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coloring

  • Incorporate Pantone's Color of the Year - Living Coral- Into Your 2019 Life

    Pantone has done it again. They've churned out a rockin' choice for 2019's color of the year: Living Coral! We didn't know how we'd ever get over 2018's Ultra Violet, but lo and behold, here we are, admiring another bright, beautiful, and bold color. Pantone drew from nature and intimacy in their color choice this year, hoping that the warmth from Living Coral will "provide comfort and buoyancy in our continually shifting environment." Too much of our reality today has become digital, and Pantone hopes that the fresh and inviting hue of this color choice  will inspire you to unplug and unwind this year. When the time comes for your own designing, here is the color code and shade range of Living Coral (16-1546).

    Living Coral

    Check out what the executive director of Pantone's Color Institute, Leatrice Eiseman, had to say about Living Coral.

    "Color is an equalizing lens through which we experience our natural and digital realities, and this is particularly true for Living Coral. With consumers craving human interaction and social connection, the humanizing and heartening qualities displayed by the convivial Pantone Living Coral hit a responsive chord."

    The color has already become a popular shade that's being incorporated into living rooms, clothing, art, and home decor. We love it so much, we've already started using it around the office. We all know that the best way to a fresh start is a fresh space, and it couldn't be more true for us makers. Here are some great Leisure Arts tips and tricks on how you can incorporate Living Coral into your 2019 life.

     

    Living Coral + Diamond Art = The Perfect Kit for 2019

    Living Coral Diamond Art by Leisure Arts - Lotus Advanced Kit

    We love how effortless and easy Diamond Art is, and it totally goes along with Pantone's theme of unplugging from media and unwinding with color. Our Advanced Lotus Diamond Art Kit (above) has the perfect shade range to satisfy your new hunger for Living Coral. The 13 faceted gems make the flower stand out in any room, and give your space that relaxing feel that will put you in the perfect creative state.

     

    Paint The Year Away With Happy Abstracts

    Living Coral Happy Abstracts - Book 7412
    Living Coral Happy Abstracts - Book 7412

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    Most Pantone shades start with painting a room, or adding an accent here or there. So why not kick it up a notch and go beyond that color on the wall? Happy Abstracts helps you be bold and beautiful with color, and what better color to start with than the new 2019 hue? Go beyond the classic still life and play with abstract shapes and sizes as you follow the projects in this how to abstract painting book. The best thing about abstract painting is that you can make it your own! So this year, liven up your space with bright and brilliant paintings (above left). Just look at how nice the paintings look against that lighter shade of coral (above right)!

     

    Live It Up With Coral Accents in Crochet

    Living Coral Quick Crochet with Flowers - Book 75684
    Living Coral Quick Crochet with Flowers

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    If you're looking to use coral as an accent only, these home decor pieces from Quick Crochet With Flowers is definitely the way to go. Tune into nature when you create these wild and wonderful floral designs with mixed media materials and fine weaving techniques. Go rustic with a lighter shade of coral like the branched out wreath shows (above right), or even vary the shades of coral in your designs, as the dream catcher (above left) does.

    Living Coral Lacy Afghans - Book 7199

    If you want to accent your home with a nice afghan instead, try out this beautiful Lacy Afghan (above)! Perfect crochet patterns for any season, and comfy for every occasion! You can even change out the darker coral shade for a brighter yarn if you wanted to, the choice is yours!

    Living Coral Honolulu Pink Yarn - Lion Brand

    If you're having trouble finding yarn colors similar to Living Coral, we have a yarn from Lion Brand's Hometown USA collection, labeled "Honolulu Pink" (above) that you can try! It's vibrant and bold, and almost exactly like Living Coral.

    Knit Yourself A New 2019 Aesthetic

    Living Coral Dishcloth Dresses - Book 75615
    Living Coral Knit Color Block Blankets - 7224

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    For the knit obsessed crafters, we have some great versatile patterns for you try. Knit Color Block Blankets may be a book about simple baby blankets, but you can always tweak the pattern to make the blanket bigger! This contrasted and color blocked pattern (above right) is a great example. Contrast this navy blue an bright turquoise with a complimentary coral block or two.

    If you're looking for something quirky for your kitchen decor, we have inventive little helpers for your dish soap bottles (above left)! If you want to show your guests that you're trendy and pay attention to details, then knit yourself little kitchen dishcloth dresses!

     

    Quilt/Sew Fun With Embroidery Hoops

    Living Coral Hoops Hooray 7251
    Living Coral Home Decor Using Grommets - Book 7342

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    2019 will have one thing in common with 2018 : The desperate desire for easy breezy life hacks. Last year, our go-to book was Home Decor Using Grommetswith it's neat and functional craft space hacks (above right). This year, we have Hoops Hooray, a book that takes embroidery hoops to the next level. Play with swatches of fabric and felt as you reinvent home decor with these simple sewing accessories. Take the effortless and stylish storage pouch made from this adorable patterned coral fabric (above left). This project is the perfect mix of fashion and function, and there's plenty more projects just like it in this book.

     

    Living coral was chosen by Pantone to rejuvenate your year and bring you comfort and warmth. Hopefully, we've given you some inspiration for your new 2019 setup. Start the new year with bold, bright, and creative choices!

    Leisure Arts will be posing more inspirational posts about color throughout the year based on Lion Brand's Colors Of The Year! Our first post might even be appearing soon (hint, hint). Stay tuned!

     

    Happy Decorating!

    -Leisure Arts Team

  • New Year, New You! Find Your New Year's Resolution In Crafts

    Crafters! It's 2019. Can you believe it?! We can't either, because we just finished the first week of January, and have no New Year's Resolutions.

    Are you in the same boat? Have no fear! Lucky for you, Leisure Arts is starting off 2019 right with a "New Year, New You" craft campaign. We want to help you be the best version of yourself this year, and in order to do that, you need goals. We've compiled a list of our favorite long craft projects that are destined to become your New Year's resolutions for 2019. Read on and pick your favorite!

     

    Crochet - New Year's Resolutions

    New Year's Resolutions Homespun Comfort Afghans - Book 75686
    Homespun Comfort Afghans - Book 75686

    Yarn is the most popular medium here at Leisure arts, so why not give you the best projects to choose from this year? We've adored these books and patterns from the moment we saw them, and we think they would be great long term projects! Take this yellow afghan from Homespun Comfort Afghans . The color of yarn is vibrant, the pattern is whimsical, and it looks like it could be the perfect companion to a Netflix bingefest. What makes this book shine (besides the majorly awesome patterns) are the variety of patterns and colors that you have to work with. So if this afghan isn't your thing, check out the others! There's a pattern that fits every style in there.

     

     

     

     

    New Year's Resolutions Fair Isle Crochet - Book 7236
    New Year's Resolutions Fair Isle Crochet -Book 7236

    If you're looking for more traditional resolutions, then you'll fall in love with these sets from Fair Isle Crochet. With traditional color changing line work matched with deep ceruleans and forest greens, there's no other style of crochet as mesmerizing. This book has a variety of rustic comfort patterns that works for even the coldest of environments, so you're set for looking cute and comfy to boot!

     

     

     

     

     

    Knit - New Year's Resolutions

    New Year's Resolutions Mitered Square Knitting - Book 7101
    New Year's Resolutions Mitered Square Knitting - Book 7101

    Knit! It can be an easy or a hard craft depending on the pattern. For 2019, we went extra hard on the details and line work when looking for the perfect resolution project. Mitered Square Knitting has the perfect balance of patterns that range from home decor to kitchen aid. Take on the challenge of the bright blue color blocked living room set (left), or the warm and geometric ribbed pillow and blanket (right). If you want a resolution that will help you out while you cook, check out the other spectrum of this book! You're sure to find something that will match your style.

     

     

     

     

    Arts and Crafts - Creative Resolutions

    New Year's Resolutions Hand Lettering - Book 7326
    New Year's Resolutions Double Ended Markers - Item 50495

    Maybe your Resolution is to be more elegant this year, and what better way to be more elegant than to teach yourself fancy lettering? Hand Lettering is our go to book for styled lettering and faux calligraphy. The workbook gives you step by step instructions, and has 3 different styles, numbers, and flourishes to learn. Hand Lettering is a great way to elevate your invitation, or take that wall art just that extra step further. Author Kathryn Erney says that hand lettering is as simple as a fine tip felt marker, and lucky for you, we have our finest Double Ended Markers to offer you! You can never stop practicing and improving with hand lettering, so this is a great resolution to pick up, because it has the opportunity to become a lifetime hobby.

     

     

     

    New Year's Resolutions DIY Fairy Gardens - Book 7364
    New Year's Resolutions DIY Fairy Gardens - Book 7364

    If Lettering isn't your thing, the why not try to architecture? At it's smallest level, of course. DIY Fairy Gardens is the book that sparks your imagination as you create adorable little homes for fairy garden friends! These designs vary by environment, style, materials, and textures, so you'll never complain about a lack of inspiration. Afterwards, you can create and concoct your own little fairy universes! This is a fun way to start the new year, and you can continue to create new places as the seasons change. If you want extra accessories for your gardens, try our exclusive Fairy Supplies!

     

     

     

     

    Quilt & Sew - Unique Resolutions

    New Year's Resolutions Upcycle Quilts - Book 6724
    New Year's Resolutions Upcycle Quilts - Book 6724

    Quilting is a well loved craft that yields long lasting, lifetime memories. So naturally, making a Quilt is a great New Year's Resolution! Try making these quirky and cute patterns from Upcycle Quilts. Not only do these patterns utilize memories you don't want to let go of, like the Sweater Throw Quilt (left), but they can be multifunctional like the Beach Blanket Quilt (right). There are tons of tips and tricks for working with all the different mediums incorporated in the patterns too. The book is essentially a quilting encyclopedia!

     

     

     

     

    Diamond Art! A Dazzling Resolution

    New Year's Resolutions Peacock Diamond Art Kit - Item 49940
    New Year's Resolutions Peacock Diamond Art Kit - Item 49940

    Diamond Art became one of our most popular products of 2019. Everyone took to Diamond Painting like a fish to water! Unplug and unwind as you paint your year away in luxurious 13 faceted diamonds on quality fabric canvases. You'll feel so relaxed that you'll hardly even realize you're working. Our Advanced Peacock Diamond Art Kit is the ultimate challenge to take on for 2019, with the canvas at almost a full drill (fully crystallized) capacity. At the end of your diamond painting quest, you'll have a Royal Monarch to hang in your living room, to show off your hard work and dazzling dedication.

     

    Regardless of what you choose as your Resolution for 2019, you need to make sure to stick with it so you can show off your hard work at the end of the year! There's always time to fit in your new favorite hobbies.

    Stay tuned this January for the next blog post in our "New Year, New You" campaign. We'd love to follow you guys in your new crafts and creative journeys for 2019! Keep posting to our visitor page so we can see all the awesome stuff you make in your studios.

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    Happy New Year!

    -Leisure Arts Team

     

     

     

     

     

  • A Feast of Creativity! Fun Projects to Get You in the Thanksgiving Spirit.

     

    Halloween is over, Makers. The skulls and cauldrons are being put away until next year, and turkeys and cornucopias are taking their place! Thanksgiving is a holiday that's meant for endless conversation over great food, and even better company. But there tends to be one thing overlooked every year when you plan for your grand feast : the decor! Decorations make or break the ambiance of a dinner, and for a meal as important as Thanksgiving, you definitely don't wanna drop the ball. Which is why we've got your back! We've put together a few fun projects in all types of mediums that will make your Thanksgiving environment so mesmerizing, no one will even notice that you almost burnt the sweet potato pie.

    Look for your category, if you're craft specific, or dive in and try out a project in a new craft! The choice is totally yours.

    Give Thanks With Crochet Goodies

    Thanksgiving Crafts Nature's Gifts For Baby Pattern

    As any great craftsman knows, the best way to give thanks during the holidays is through home made gifts and trinkets! If you're a crochet lover at heart, then you've come to the right blog post. We've got some nifty patterns for you to try out, and give out to the people you love. Just look at the adorable fox hat and matching blanket pattern that you can make for the little ones in your life (above). This getup from Nature's Gifts For Baby  will be sure to get loads of attention for Fall, and your baby can be cute and comfortable as they're showered with cheek pinches and waves of "awww".

    Thanksgiving Crafts Little Animals Headgear - Turkey Beanie
    Thanksgiving Crafts Little Animals Headgear - Turkey Headband

    If you've got someone a little older that you're making for, check out these Turkey Transformation patterns from Little Animals Headgear (Left). These cute and functional headband and beanie patterns are sure to be a big hit with the family during Thanksgiving Dinner. Plus, if you're not dying of cuteness overload from these pictures, then your heart is made of stuffing, and you didn't eat enough cranberry sauce. The pattern can be adjustable based on how big or small the person you're crocheting for is, so this pattern can be made for a wide age range! It's holiday gift patterns like these that really show that you're thinking outside of the oven for Thanksgiving this year. Not that there's anything wrong with thinking inside the oven, of course. Thanksgiving is supposed to be a day for eating! Which is why we have these next few patterns just for the kitchen.

     

    Thanksgiving Crafts Crocheted Lace Trimmings - Quick Thread Projects

    If you've always been known for your upscale Thanksgiving soirees, then this is the project for you. Quick Thread Projects (above) is known for its fun and trendy projects for any occasion, and this Lace Trimming project certainly takes the cake (or pumpkin pie). The lacework can elevate the decor of your event, or give a little extra oomph to that store-bought Jam that you're trying to pass off as homemade (you can't fool me with that unmarked mason jar).

     

    Thanksgiving Crafts White Lace Runner - Filet Table Runners

    This project is specifically for the table. Though your guests might not notice it immediately -because they're focused on the delicious buffet in front of them- it has been a traditional part of Thanksgiving decor for decades, and we can't not include tradition in a classic holiday like this one. We're talking table runners, makers! Specifically, this White Lace Filet Runner from Filet Table Runners (above). They've been the perfect pairing to that apple print tablecloth that everyone remembers they had for at least one Thanksgiving, I'm 89.9% sure of that.

     

    Knit Some Handy Kitchen Helpers for Thanksgiving Dinner

    Don't be fooled by all of our cool crochet crafts, we have some awesome knit stuff too. These Thanksgiving themed projects make the perfect handy helpers that are festive and functional!

    Thanksgiving Crafts Dishcloths for Special Days
    Thanksgiving Crafts Corn Cob Dishcloth - Make In A Weekend Potholders and Dishcloths
    Thanksgiving Crafts Apple Potholder - Make In A Weekend Potholders and Dishcloths

    These crafty potholders and dishcloths from Make in a Weekend Potholders and Dishcloths (right) will brighten up any kitchen space, and make it look like you have an eclectic taste in home decor. That corn cob dishcloth looks good enough to eat! Let these little baubles be your good luck charms when cooking Thanksgiving dinner. If the funky patterns aren't up to your speed, then try these simple and subtle designs from Dishcloths For Special Days! Modern or Classic, you choose which style is best for you and your family.

    Festive Coloring - Fun For Everyone

    Thanksgiving Crafts Bountiful Wonders Coloring Sheet

    Coloring! The craft that makes you feel like a kid again, but in the best and most relaxing way possible. Adult coloring has become one of those mindless and relaxing crafts that you can enjoy whenever and wherever you want. Which is why you need these festive coloring books for the upcoming Thanksgiving Holiday. No one ever thinks about the down time during family get togethers - when you're waiting for the food to be finished. Even if you did think about it last year, it was probably already too late, and then you became stuck in between channels of boring small talk between your aunts and uncles that will just be repeated when Christmas comes (don't worry, we have Christmas coloring books too).

    Thanksgiving Crafts Color On The Go - Welcome Fall
    Thanksgiving Crafts Color On The Go - Gather Together

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    Adult coloring was made for down time, so this Thanksgiving, when you feel the need to be creative, check out the beautiful content in Bountiful Wonders (above header), Color on the Go - Fall, and Color On The Go - Gather Together (above).

    If you're looking for ways to repurpose those pages after they're colored, check out our DIY Coloring Decor post we did for National Coloring Day.

     

    Bonus : Thanksgiving Fun with Plastic Canvas

    Thanksgiving Crafts Holiday Fancies - Give Thanks Napkin Holder

    This is for the festive turkeys that want to go the extra mile this holiday. Plastic Canvas is a fun and addicting craft to start, and what better project to start with than this adorable napkin holder, from Holiday Fancies, perfect for any table. Pair this with your table runners and lace trim, and you've got yourself a swanky Thanksgiving.

     

    Share Your Projects With Us! 

    Which of these projects do you want to try, Makers? Give us a shout out in the comments or on our Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter. We love to see what you're working on!

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    Happy Decorating!

    -Leisure Arts Team

  • Bountiful Pencils

    My favorite time of year is here -- sort of; fall is having a difficult time arriving with above-average temperatures and little rain! So to encourage all things autumnal to surround me, I pulled out my Bountiful Wonders Color Art for Everyone coloring book (one of my favorites) to decide which page would be my next to color.

    Blank page of pumpkins and gourds to be colored using Premium Colored Pencils (48581) and Watercolor Colored Pencils (48582) by Leisure Arts. Blank page of pumpkins and gourds to be colored using Premium Colored Pencils (48581) and Watercolor Colored Pencils (48582) by Leisure Arts.

    Coloring is so much fun especially when the design is themed around something you love. So coloring a fall-themed design was easy for me. I've been using and loving the new pencils Leisure Arts has to offer. There are two choices; they are the 30-Pack Premium Colored Pencils and the 30-Pack Watercolor Colored Pencils. Both of these new sets of pencils give an extra "wow" factor to a picture!

    As with most pictures I color using colored pencils, it is the layering and blending of colors that bring an image to life.

    Close-up of the colors and blending started on a section of the page from Bountiful Wonders (6993). Close-up of the colors and blending started on a section of the page from Bountiful Wonders (6993).

    Think outside-the-box when it comes to your color palette; don't think you should only use the "traditional" or "natural" colors for the pumpkins and gourds.

    Larger section showing traditional and non-traditional colors chosen for the leaves, pumpkins and gourds (from 6993 - Bountiful Wonders by Leisure Arts). Larger section showing traditional and non-traditional colors chosen for the leaves, pumpkins and gourds (from 6993 - Bountiful Wonders by Leisure Arts).

    Another step to my creation of a 3-D look to a 2-D drawing is the use of a second medium. To aid in this dimensional effect, I introduced some watercolor pencils to my coloring.

    Adding the watercolor colored pencils over certain sections of the premium colored pencils already rendered on page. Adding the Watercolor Colored Pencils over certain sections of the Premium Color Colored Pencils already rendered on a page.

    The final incorporation of both the Premium Color Colored Pencils and Watercolor Color Colored Pencils comes after the water-dipped paint brush blends those layers together. After the pumpkins and gourds are colored, I move on to coloring the falling leaves. I will first use the watercolor pencils on a few of the leaves and highlights on some pumpkins and gourds.

    After the water was added to blend the layer of watercolor pencils over the already existing colored pencil colors. After the water was added to blend the layer of watercolor pencils over the already existing colored pencil colors.

    Working on my page for a little while every day was very convenient for me; morning coffee and coloring. I always enjoy seeing an image come to life with each added color!

    The combined effects of using both the Premium Colored Pencils and the Watercolor Pencils to the page from Bountiful Wonders (6993 by Leisure Arts). The combined effects of using both the Premium Colored Pencils and the Watercolor Pencils to the page from Bountiful Wonders (6993 by Leisure Arts).

    Here are some of the selected pencils that I used on this page. In the below image, the silver pencil shafts are the Premium Colored Pencils on the left, and the gold shafted pencils are the Watercolor Colored Pencils on the right.

    I am very pleased that I used both the 30-Pack Premium Colored Pencils (48581) and the 30-Pack Watercolor Colored Pencils (48582)! I am very pleased that I used both the 30-Pack Premium Colored Pencils (48581) and the 30-Pack Watercolor Colored Pencils (48582)!

    All I have to do is find a nice frame in which to place my completed page. I very much want to keep this page protected, yet share its bounty with my guests.

    Page of pumpkins and gourds from 6993 - Bountiful Wonders Color Art for Everyone by Leisure Arts. Page of pumpkins and gourds from 6993 - Bountiful Wonders Color Art for Everyone by Leisure Arts.

    Happy fall decorating using Bountiful Wonders Color Art for Everyone!

    Martha

     

  • Clothespin Crafts from Kids to Adults: Egg Carton Flowers & Scented Caterpillars

    I was amazed at how many clothespin crafts for kids to adults there were available when researching on Pinterest. But, as always, Pinterest searches open a treasure trove of information. How to cull it down is the key. What really caught my eye were some creative uses of fairly common materials in kids' crafts: egg cartons and pom-poms. Include some clothespins, and an additional magnet, and many hours of crafting can result!

    The wide, wooden clothespins carried by Leisure Arts are fabulous for painting, gluing and decorating. The smoother and larger surface area make it easy for younger and older crafters to create.

    Large, natural wood clothespins measure approximately 2.875" long x 0.625" wide; four per pack. Leisure Arts item #48165. Large, natural wood clothespins measure approximately 2.875" long x 0.625" wide; four per pack. Leisure Arts item #48165.

    The younger crowd, with some assistance, can make egg carton flowers. I loved these cherry blossom flowers because of the incorporation of make-believe egg carton flowers with the real branches. Since I wanted to use the materials I had, I decided to make the flowers with the egg cartons and then glue them onto my clothespins.

    If assistance is needed, it may come with the formation of the flowers' petals. The flowers do not have to be exact or perfect; the petals are formed by tearing the shapes. However, depending on the age of the child, your youngster may need assistance with this step.

    Cardboard egg cartons; each section separated and "petals" are formed by tearing. Cardboard egg cartons; each section separated and "petals" are formed by tearing.

    The fun comes with the painting! Most kids can do this on their own with some guidelines regarding usage and cleanliness -- what they may/may not paint! Use your judgment when it comes to your choice of medium and make adjustments as needed. I used acrylic paints to paint my egg carton flowers.

    Acrylic paint applied to cardboard flowers. Some flowers will be glued onto large, natural wood clothespins. Leisure Arts item #48165. Acrylic paint applied to cardboard flowers. Some flowers will be glued onto large, natural wood clothespins. Leisure Arts item #48165.

    I started preparing for my next craft: pom-pom caterpillars. Why was I excited about these so much? I was blown away with the ingenious use of essential oils and pom-poms to scent the air in a car; I just had to try -- especially since I only recently purchased three essential oils to make shower melts and hand scrub, I was looking for more uses!

    The large wooden clothespins by Leisure Arts are 0.625" wide - that's like a mini palette! Kids can paint, glue and decorate more easily using these! So, I gathered my paints, pom-poms in various sizes and textures, bought some wiggly eyes and was set to go!

    Collection of supplies for clothespin crafts for the younger kids to make. Egg carton flowers and pom-pom caterpillars will be glued to clothespins. Collection of supplies for clothespin crafts for the younger kids to make. Egg carton flowers and pom-pom caterpillars will be glued to clothespins.

    I don't have white School Glue so I substituted E6000 glue; again, use your judgment according to the age of the group of kids or other individuals with whom you are working!

    Egg carton flowers can have one or two layers of "petals". Add a pom-pom or other embellishment(s) to center. Glue some to clothespins backed with magnets. Egg carton flowers can have one or two layers of "petals". Add a pom-pom or other embellishment(s) to center. Glue some to clothespins backed with magnets.

    As adults, we can over-think too much, even when it comes to fun crafts. I almost fell into this trap regarding the pom-pom caterpillars and their looks; then, I laughed out loud! Most little kids won't be self-criticizing. Let them have fun with different colors and sizes of pom-poms. I even had some pom-poms with a few extra-long shimmery fibers which added a nice touch (literally and figuratively) to the caterpillar.

    Caterpillars get wiggly eyes added either to the clothespin, or to the first pom-pom. Magnets can be added to the back of the clothespin. Caterpillars get wiggly eyes added either to the clothespin, or to the first pom-pom. Magnets can be added to the back of the clothespin.

    Leave room at the end of the clothespin for the wiggly eyes if you decide to glue them there. After the glue is set, place one or more drops of essential oils onto one or more of your caterpillar pom-poms.

    Extra versatility to these caterpillars: add a few drops of an essential oil to one or more pom-poms. Attach caterpillar clothespin to a fan for soothing aroma-therapy! Extra versatility to these caterpillars: add a few drops of an essential oil to one or more pom-poms. Attach caterpillar clothespin to a fan for soothing aroma-therapy!

    You may prefer less of a scent if planning on using your aromatic caterpillar in a car attached to the air conditioning vent, rather than attached to a room fan.

    A fan gently distributes Lavender's essential oil's scent from the pom-poms throughout the air! A fan gently distributes the scent of Lavender essential oil throughout the air; one drop of Lavender was placed on each pom-pom.

    Older kids and adults can be creative with these large natural clothespins, too. Extra detailing using paint, buttons, brads, coloring book art, artificial floral and fauna all are great to add a special theme to the clothespins.

    Paint and other embellishments are added to clothespins that older "kids" and adults can make; magnets can be added to the backs. Paint and other embellishments are added to clothespins that older "kids" and adults can make; magnets can be added to the backs.

    Gathering my clothespin crafts and other items that I want to make into magnets; this adds versatility for my clothespins.

    Younger kids can make egg carton flower clothespin magnets and pom-pom caterpillar clothespin magnets (*adults can add a few drops of an essential oil to one or more pom-poms and attach to a fan). Younger kids can make egg carton flower clothespin magnets and pom-pom caterpillar clothespin magnets (*adults can add a few drops of an essential oil to one or more pom-poms and attach to a fan).

    All magnets are not created equal; even when they are the same diameter. Here are packaging examples of three magnetic "buttons". The magnet strength nor thickness/height are list; only the diameter as 0.75 inches. I chose to use the ProMAG Ceramic Magnets (the yellow packaging pictured in the upper right-hand corner of the image).

    The difference in magnet buttons: thickness and adhesive backing! The difference in magnet buttons: thickness and adhesive backing!

    Here's a close-up of the magnets themselves.

    Close-up: the difference in magnet buttons clearly shows the difference in thickness. Close-up: the difference in magnet buttons clearly shows the difference in thickness.

    Now to decorate! But I think I'll need more room than one portion of my refrigerator's side. I don't have anything else that is readily available; do you? If not, stay tuned for my next installment and what you can do to create a board for your new clothespin magnets!

    Bye for now,

    Martha

  • Vintage Adult Coloring Book Clip Magnets

    A themed coloring book magnet became my gift to those who helped me for the past two years. As a member of P.E.O., I completed a two-year term as a local chapter President. P.E.O. is an international women's organization supporting the education of women. I wanted to give the women who served as my officers a remembrance gift as a thank you for their time. 

    I decided to make a small remembrance gift using a coloring book page. P.E.O. has the Marguerite Daisy as one of its icons. I knew I found the right design when I saw the daisies in 7041 - Art of Coloring Vintage Collection by Leisure Arts.

    A daisy repeat pattern from Leisure Arts #7041 - Art of Coloring Vintage Collection. A daisy repeat pattern from Leisure Arts #7041 - Art of Coloring Vintage Collection.

    I wanted a playful look to the daisies as if one was running through a field of flowers. I used splashes of color with markers, with added blotches of white soft pastel chalk. Did you know there are many hues of white in a pastel chalk collection? I chose one that was not too gray, and not too creamy in hue.

    During last fall, I made a few magnets using both mini stretched canvases and board panels, you can read my earlier post here. I wanted a variation of this theme by including a clothespin to make this project a clip magnet. With this goal in mind, I purchased a pack of 2" canvas board panels. The board panels provide a solid flat back onto which I could securely glue both a clothespin and magnet.

    The coloring book page was "loosely" colored with markers and a soft white chalk pastel. The yellow squares are painted 2" canvas panels. The coloring book page was "loosely" colored with markers and a soft white chalk pastel. The yellow squares are painted 2" canvas panels.

    I wanted to determine how much of the colored daisy page I would use decorating eight board panels. For an easy visual determination, I placed the painted board panels on top of my colored page. That's when I decided to turn the canvases so that instead of presenting as a square, each would become a diamond. For the clip, I would glue a 1.5" clothespin on the back of each panel with each clothespin's opening facing down.

    The daisy page was cut into 2" sections. The design was placed "en pointe". Glued onto the backside of each canvas panel, was a painted clothespin and magnet. The daisy page was cut into 2" sections. The design was placed "en pointe". Glued onto the backside of each canvas panel, was a painted clothespin and magnet.

    Thank goodness for Mod Podge® Gloss sealer! A wonderful -- and easy -- method of sealing a project on all sides. I definitely wanted a glossy sheen for these flowers! I added a date on the back and was ready to wrap!

    Here are several examples after Mod Podge® Gloss Sealer was applied. Here are several examples after Mod Podge® Gloss Sealer was applied.

    I decided to put each magnet in a small box; I didn't want the clothespin or panel board corners to break through a paper gift bag. Instead of wrapping each box in gift wrap, I decorated each white box lid with another daisy and a little glitz. The little glitz ribbon I found as I was rushing through my local Dollar Tree store; here is the ribbon I used on their website.

    Gift boxes were decorated with Diamond Wrap Ribbon and a daisy; both were purchased at a local Dollar Tree store. Gift boxes were decorated with Diamond Wrap Ribbon and a daisy; both were purchased at a local Dollar Tree store.

    These coloring book clip magnets were a perfect expression of my love of coloring and appreciation to the women in P.E.O. who assisted me during the last two years. It was a great way to share myself and say thank you as part of this remembrance gift keepsake. Another organization for which this daisy gift could be used is the Girl Scouts of  the United States of America. The daisy-themed project would be great to give the leaders or parents of any Daisy Girl Scout troop! Because of their age, the Daisy Girl Scouts would need older girl or adult help making the final project, but what a delight the leaders and/or parents would get when they received such a memorable gift!

    Enjoy all that you do; the resulting gift will show the care that you share!

    Martha

  • Dress Up Your Sweet Treats This Valentine's Day!

    Hearts, flowers, and candy galore usually define Valentine's Day. Make your celebration even more heartfelt by including thoughtful special gift wraps or decorative embellishments as additions to your gifts and sweets.

    My idea was simple enough; I wanted to make some animal cut-outs using pages from my coloring book stash. Then I got serious when I saw these super-cute animal shapes by Lia Griffith and just had to do them for Valentine's Day.

    These animal templates for DIY Candy Huggers by Lia Griffith found on Pinterest served as my inspiration. These animal templates for DIY Candy Huggers by Lia Griffith found on Pinterest served as my inspiration.

    My first step was to choose one book from my coloring book collection. I chose Leisure Arts' item #6903 - Art of Coloring Nature after I saw several pages with heart-shapes incorporated into the designs. Plus, I wanted nature-themed pages for my animals.

    A wonderful collection of imaginary and realistic flora can be found in Leisure Arts #6903 - Art of Coloring Nature. A wonderful collection of imaginary and realistic flora can be found in Leisure Arts #6903 - Art of Coloring Nature.

    Here's an example of one page whose heart shapes were very well incorporated into its design.

    The heart shape can be found peeking out among the flowers and birds on this page from Leisure Arts #6903 - Art of Coloring Nature. I've lightly colored some for you to see more easily. The heart shape can be found peeking out among the flowers and birds on this page from Leisure Arts #6903 - Art of Coloring Nature. I've lightly colored some for you to see more easily.

    After enlarging and printing the original templates by Lia Griffith, I modified one so that my three animal shapes included a cat along with the bunny and bear shapes. Once I had a master set of my own templates, I set out arranging them on a coloring book page; I could trace and cut three animal shapes from one coloring book page!

    I arranged my animal templates to ensure all three shapes could be cut from one coloring book page. The red construction paper had already been glued to the back of the coloring book page. I arranged my animal templates to ensure all three shapes could be cut from one coloring book page. The red construction paper had already been glued to the back of the coloring book page.

    I found some heart-shaped candy that I thought would fit under the animals' arms once crossed into a hug; I was anxious to see this project come together!

    Each animal had a foam sticker placed on its body. Then a non-edible treat like a Valentine's-themed eraser, or a piece of heart-shaped candy was place over the heart. Every animal had a foam sticker placed on its body. Then a piece of heart-shaped candy, or a non-edible treat like a Valentine's-themed eraser, was placed over each animal's heart. 

    Now I wanted to place a decorative tie around the arms instead of permanently gluing them together. Because the arms could be uncrossed, and the candy eaten, I always wanted a heart shape to be seen while the paper animal was being used. I adhered heart-shaped foam stickers to each of my paper animal huggers.

    Next, each animal's arms were crossed and held together in a hug by a removable silk cord. Next, each animal's arms were crossed and held together in a hug by a removable silk cord.

    I knew I had to find another type of treat instead of candy. Not every treat has to be edible; sometimes there are dietary restrictions that must be followed for children and adults alike. Don't take the celebration out of the party, just find a suitable fun treat that can be used instead of candy. You can see my solution was a fun mini-eraser!

    Instead of a heart-shaped candy, try using a different treat like this eraser for your "animal hugger". Instead of a heart-shaped candy, try using a different treat for your "animal hugger" like this eraser.

    Here are my animal huggers all in a row atop some festive Valentine's Day paper doilies.

    Here are four of the six "animal candy huggers" made by using two coloring book pages from Leisure Arts #6903 - Art of Coloring Nature. Here are four of the six "animal candy huggers" made by using two coloring book pages from Leisure Arts #6903 - Art of Coloring Nature.

    If you prefer not to make animal shapes, consider dressing up a rectangular-shaped chocolate bar. Look what you can do with some Paper Shaper Craft Scissors and paper flowers (like the ones I made in my earlier post Birthday Coloring Cards & Tea Light Cake).

    Wrap a candy bar, color a few shapes, secure with a band made from construction paper and add some paper flowers. Now that's fancy chocolate! Wrap a candy bar, color a few shapes, secure with a band made from construction paper and add some paper flowers. Now that's fancy chocolate!

    If you have a photo taken every year on Valentine's Day, or have a favorite one in mind to give in a personalized frame, try combining a few decorative ideas into one gift. Because I found a modestly-priced wooden frame it had no glass in its frame's opening to cover a photograph, nor did it have a wooden back to more securely hold an image in place.

    So now I needed to use a coloring book page that could act as the frame's back, as well as, to serve as a nice-looking image place holder until a new photograph was inserted. The page I planned on cutting was from Leisure Arts' item #6905 - Art of Coloring Designs.

    I call this page "Hearts Aplenty" and I used it with my painted frame. This design can be found in Leisure Arts #6905 - Art of Coloring Designs. I call this page "Hearts Aplenty" and I used it with my painted frame. This design can be found in Leisure Arts #6905 - Art of Coloring Designs.

    I painted my inexpensive wooden frame red. Then I glued a wooden ampersand symbol painted black, with a white outline, onto the frame to help signify the unifying feeling of love on this day. As part of the frame's presentation, I placed one of my animal huggers on top of it.

    I painted two inexpensive wooden items and combined them to make a very nice Valentine's gift. The frame with heart-shaped opening along with the ampersand were painted with acrylic paint and then sprayed with an acrylic sealer. A photo can be added later but until then, I chose to use a coloring book page as a placeholder. The bunny is not attached to the frame. I painted two inexpensive wooden items and combined them to make a very nice Valentine's gift. The frame with heart-shaped opening along with the ampersand were painted with acrylic paint and then sprayed with an acrylic sealer. A photo can be added later but until then, I chose to use a coloring book page as a placeholder. The bunny is not attached to the frame.

    Wonderful ideas come together with a little inspiration - and coloring book pages! How do you try to incorporate your coloring into other gifts, stationery, and/or decorations?

    Happy Valentine's Day to all!

    Martha

  • Birthday Coloring Cards & Tea Light Cake

    Celebrate the next birthday with a card and cake made by you. Birthdays are celebrated all year long and can come when the weather is preventing you from leaving the house. Don't despair; you can make a personalized card -- and cake -- in advance of that special birthday celebration!

    Grab your package of Birthday Coloring Cards (#48232) and choose one of three designs to color. The weather can be challenging during many seasons, so lighten the stress by coloring one of these fun designs. I tried to make my letters deep and bold, while still being playful. I used colored pencils and markers, then added some glittery color with gel pens.

    Color a birthday card! Experiment with different hues, techniques and media. One of three pattern designs found in a package of six cards with envelopes (#48231). Color a birthday card! Experiment with different hues, techniques and media. One of three pattern designs found in a package of six cards with envelopes (#48232).

    My colleague, Pam, colored the same design as I did. It's a great comparison to see another's finished work with their use of colors and media. I really like the different way her card makes the word "Birthday" POP off the page!

    Personalize a birthday card by coloring it using your favorite media in the recipient's favorite colors! Try using gel pens, markers and/or colored pencils (#48231). Personalize a birthday card by coloring it using your favorite media in the recipient's favorite colors! Try using gel pens, markers and/or colored pencils (#48232).

    Another birthday card has a design for you to color without the birthday greeting printed as part of the design. Don't ever feel like you have to color the entire design area for your coloring to be complete.

    Choose one of three designs in a package of six cards with envelopes. Some have a "Happy Birthday" inscription; all are blank inside (#48231). Choose one of three designs in a package of six cards with envelopes. Some have a "Happy Birthday" inscription; all are blank inside (#48232).

    Prepare for some added fun -- it's time to get your make-ahead birthday cake ready now! I was so intrigued by making a cake out of a tea light that I had to give it a go. I was first inspired by these photographed steps showing how to easily make spiral flowers and spiral paper flowers here. Then my wheels began turning...

    I started gathering items I would need which included a new craft supply for me, Paper Shaper Craft Scissors (#47596). I grabbed one of my tea lights (#47150) from my stash, and since I enjoy using my paper supply from my coloring books, I tore a page from one of my recently obtained coloring books, Art of Coloring Vintage Collection (#7041). 

    Gathering supplies to make paper flowers on a tea light birthday cake! For a decorative edge on your flowers, choose one of the 12 shapes found in the Craft Scissors Value Pack (#47596). Gathering supplies to make paper flowers on a tea light birthday cake! For a decorative edge on your flowers, choose one of the 12 shapes found in the Craft Scissors Value Pack (#47596).

    Reviewing the images of the spiral flowers, and spiral paper flowers, I cut my spirals using the pink-handled scissors. I then curled each flower by holding the outermost edge with my needle nose pliers. NOTE: depending on which way you curl the paper, the printed design may appear on the inside or outside of the flower petals. I chose to curl in different directions to add more dimension to my final birthday cake.

    Don't forget the necessary tools to be used: a pair of needle nose pliers and hot glue gun. Don't forget the necessary tools to be used: a pair of needle nose pliers and hot glue gun.

    Each flower had a dab of hot glue placed at its base. I used Washi Tape to decorate the outside edge of my tea light birthday cake. Then I hot glued each individual flower around the flame on the top of the tea light. This was so much fun! As I worked, it dawned on me to make a two-tiered cake. Since I wasn't sure I wanted to keep forever multiple tea lights with the same pattern from one coloring book page, the additional tea lights on the bottom cake tier only had a removable paper circle placed over each flame (see the cut slits in each flower pattern center).

    Here's a close-up of the stacked tea lights. Only the top tea light has the flowers permanently glued around its flame. Here's a close-up of the stacked tea lights. Only the top tea light has the flowers permanently glued around its flame.

    Make the birthday person's place setting extra special with your colored birthday card and tea light birthday cake presented on a plate!

    I stacked four tea lights to give it an appearance of a two-tiered cake. Present your "cake" on a plate with your card for a special presentation. I stacked four tea lights to give it an appearance of a two-tiered cake. Present your "cake" on a plate with your card for a special presentation.

    Here's a different look for announcing the birthday honoree...

    All aglow with happiness - anyone would feel special with such a nice presentation! All aglow with happiness - anyone would feel special with such a nice presentation!

    Even with the flames turned off, the tea light birthday cake stands out announcing someone's special day!

    A different way to present your tea light birthday cake is on a plain footed base. A different way to present your tea light birthday cake is on a plain footed base.

    The tea lights are not permanently glued together. They are stacked and can be moved until the perfect setting is acquired for the Birthday Boy or Girl.

    Here's a super-close image of the tea lights. Another decorative option is the add a little color to some of the edges of each flower. Here's a super-close image of the tea lights. Another decorative option is to add a little color to some of the edges of each flower.

    No matter how you choose to celebrate someone's birthday, you will make it stand-out by adding your special touches with a personalized colored birthday card and everlasting tea light birthday cake!

    Have a happy day!

    Martha

     

  • After the holidays, thank you notes!

    Now it is time to write some handwritten thank you notes. New Year's Day is behind us and most seasonal celebratory activities and get-togethers are over. Show your appreciativeness for those few individuals who made your holiday experience extra special by coloring them a handwritten thank you card!

    I do take advantage of using electronic means to write notes; messages, invites, updates, and notes of appreciation. But there are times when even a brief handwritten message means so much more to the recipient than an "e" message. Now add another special feature to your holiday thank you cards by coloring! The perfect solution is Leisure Arts' Thank You Coloring Note Cards (item #48231).

    Each package of Thank You Coloring Note Cards (#48232) contains six cards with envelopes; two each of three designs. Each package of Thank You Coloring Note Cards (#48231) contains six cards with envelopes; two each of three designs.

    There are three designs, two cards per design, and six envelopes contained in each package. This set offers a nice variety of designs so that you can vary the use of each depending on the age of the recipient, or your artistic mood at the time of coloring.

    The package of Thank You cards has three designs, two cards per design (Leisure Arts #48231). The package of Thank You cards has three designs, two cards per design (Leisure Arts #48231).

    Spend a little extra time by adding some coloring pizzazz to your note -- wow, what a pop your handwritten message will have!

    Color your own Thank You cards! Colored pencils and markers used on one of three pattern designs (Leisure Arts #48232 - Thank You Coloring Note Cards). Color your own Thank You cards! Colored pencils and markers used on one of three pattern designs (Leisure Arts #48231 - Thank You Coloring Note Cards).

    Now I can't wait until later this month for my friend's January birthday -- yes, Leisure Arts carries Birthday Coloring Note Cards, too!

    The package of Birthday cards (#48231) is also available! The package of Birthday cards (#48232) is also available!

    We'd love to see some of your colored cards. Share your finished coloring note cards on Leisure Arts' Color Art for Everyone Facebook page; we'd love to see them!

    Happy 2017...

    Martha

     

  • Make Seasonal Magnets from Bountiful Wonders Coloring Book

    It's great fun to bring out seasonal decorations; let Leisure Arts' #6993 - Bountiful Wonders Color Art for Everyone help to brighten your home with an autumnal theme! The familiarity of old treasures combined with a new season can get one excited for many annual celebrations.  This year, why not try incorporating some newly made decorations along with your love of coloring? Using and sharing your creativity makes your craft come alive! Enjoy your coloring and pass it on: love it, make it, share it!

    If you haven't seen Leisure Arts' new Bountiful Wonders Color Art for Everyone coloring book you haven't seen some outstanding designs. It has gorgeous thematic pages filled with drawings that include leaves, pumpkins, turkeys, gourds, and beautiful decorative patterns. I fell in love with it and knew right away that I must incorporate my coloring in to a new seasonal project. I had saved a pin from Pinterest that was the perfect answer to my search for something new to create.

    Fabulous fall foliage plus harvest homage add a special homecoming for this season of giving! Leisure Arts #6993 - Bountiful Wonders Color Art for Everyone. Fabulous fall foliage plus an homage to an abundant harvest add a special homecoming theme for this season of giving! Leisure Arts' #6993 - Bountiful Wonders Color Art for Everyone.

    My new seasonal creation were magnets using at least one of my completed coloring book pages from #6993 - Bountiful Wonders Color Art for Everyone. But to make it a bit more fun, I liked the idea presented in this pin by Average But Inspired showing how to use small paint canvases to help create your magnet.

    Colored leaves using markers. Add more depth to your images with extra dots and strokes. Colored leaves using markers. Add more depth to your images with extra dots and strokes.

    Small paint canvases shown below are 2-inch square board canvases, or 2.5-inch stretched canvases. The board canvases came in black; the stretch canvases were unpainted.

    Two different types of mini canvases. On the left, a board canvas and on the right, a stretched canvas. Two different types of mini canvases. On the left, several board canvases and on the right, one stretched canvas.

    I got the idea of cutting out some of the finished colored leaves from my page instead of cutting a square section of the page for adhering to the canvas. Having individual leaves lets you decide how the leaves will be positioned on the canvas.

    Images from my colored page were cut and measured for each canvas. Images from my colored page were cut and measured for each canvas.

    Having imagined the finished product, I experimented by painting one of my stretch canvases first with acrylic paint before mounting any of the colored leaves onto it. I adhered my coloring book leaves onto the canvases using Mod Podge® by Plaid. Add at least one more coat of Mod Podge® over the canvases; let each coat dry in between applications.

    Now to make your canvases into magnets...turn them over. You can see by their very construction that they are different from each other. The stretch canvas is truly stretched over a wooden frame. The board canvas is a solid piece of board covered with canvas. Purchase your magnets from a craft store.

    On the back of each canvas, one or two magnets were glue on using E6000. On the back of each canvas, one or two magnets were glued on using E6000.

    Helpful hint: The placement of my magnets differ between the stretch canvas and the board canvases. Why? It wasn't a functional reason; the stretch canvas isn't heavier requiring two magnets. It was a visual reason. If I placed one magnet centered on one side of the wooden frame, I could see the top of it when I turned the frame over facing right-side up. It just bothered me to see the round magnet showing above the canvas. So before the glue set, I repositioned the magnet to one corner and then added another magnet in the opposite corner.

    Pretty and useful home decor with a seasonal touch - marvelous leaf magnets! Pretty and useful home or office decor with a seasonal touch - marvelous leaf magnets!

    This project made me happy; it made me smile because I transformed a coloring book page that I truly enjoyed creating into something else that could be shared. Even if the magnets are not given as gifts, by using them in your home or office setting you are sharing them. You are giving a bit of your artistic self to others for everyone's enjoyment.

    Now I have my eyes set on making more themed canvas magnets. Can't wait for the next season coming up!

    See you next time -

    Martha

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