Link Love #10

2353470227_cf37943a16_zImage by Alicenwondrlnd

I’m visiting my parents over the weekend, it’s nice to have a little time off since the last two weeks felt quite chaotic. I’m not sure why. Probably it’s me.

  • I love T-Shirt restylings. This is an idea I haven’t seen before.
  • Maybe these Stone Statement Rings aren’t very practical, but they surely look beautiful.
  • I want to have a Polka Dot Wall, too! Preferably in red and white, of course.
  • This article on willingness by Jess Lively is a great reminder that you have to take action to get the things you want.
  • I’m not that into easter decoration but I like the idea to use paper scraps to make a bowl. I think the big round one could be used all year.
  • What a fun idea: a Yarn Wrapped Stool.
  • I keep on bird watching, This time at the Bird A Day ART Blog. I especially like the Inkblot Test Bird.
  • Speaking of inkblots:

Have a nice weekend and Happy Easter!

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You can make this! Kitchen Clock Upcycling Tutorial

tut-clock-finishedI told you on Monday that I wanted to do something with our old kitchen clock – here’s the result. You can see how it looked before here.
I took it completely apart and only kept the clockwork and the clock hands.

I used:

  • cardbord from a packet
  • compass
  • cutter
  • wrapping paper
  • glue
  • scissors
  • Modpodge and brushes to apply it
  • foam rubber
  • lacquer pen
  • pencil
  • set square
  • Needle
  1. First I used the compass to draw a circle onto the cardboard in the size I wanted the finished clock to be and cut it with the cutter.tut-clock-2
  2. Than I glued some wrapping paper onto the cardboard and cut around the circle, leaving enough paper overhanging.tut-clock-4
  3. Next, I cut into the overhanging paper, the cuts going towards the cardboard circle and ending a tiny bit away from the circle’s edge.
  4. Then I folded the overhanging paper stripes over the edge and glued them onto the cardboard. I folded the paper really tight to avoid getting little corners along the circle.tut-clock-3Here’s how the nice side looked after I glued all stripes:tut-clock-5
  5. Afterwards I covered the whole circle with a layer of Modpodge.tut-clock-6
  6. Next I drew the numbers onto foam rubber. I drew them freehand, but you could use a stencil, too. Then I cut the numbers.tut-clock-7
  7. I added some white lines inside the numbers using a lacquer pen. I like that it’s  looking like I used crayon.tut-clock-8
  8. I first measured the exact positions of the numbers on the back of the clock face using a set square and transferred them to the front, using light pencil marks. I also drew a light circle onto the front to mark how far inside the numbers should sit.tut-clock-9
  9. Finally, I glued on the numbers, punched a hole in the middle of the clock face and attached the clockwork and the handles and added a hole to hang the clock. tut-clock-10

I had a lot more ideas, but I had to keep the clock as light as possible, since the house I live in is quite old and the walls don’t hold nails very well. Perhaps one day I’ll make another one, until then this will do.

Thanks for reading and have a great day!

Projects: Yes, I’m keeping this old kitchen clock!

clockAs I told you before, our kitchen was renovated last week and as part of this we did a little bit redecorating, too. I guess there won’t be much difference since we kept our (mostly slightly shabby) furniture, but at the moment it’s looking much more organized, clean and bright (because the clutter isn’t back in, I guess).

I also thought this would be a good time to get back to a project I wanted to do for a long time and to convince myself that it’s really reasonable to keep everything and not to throw anything away.

I’m a little bit exaggerating here, I am able to throw things away, but what I tend to keep is old clothes, old magazines, things that I don’t really like anymore but which aren’t broken, every kind of paper I stumble upon and somehow like, scraps of fabric, old books, and so on. Mainly it’s the stuff I think I still can make something of. And while I sometimes think it’s silly, I actually reuse a lot of these things and very often I am happy I kept them.
A lot of times I can start immediately with my projects because I have everything I need. Also, it saves me a lot of money to use (at least partly) the material I already have. I guess it’s keeping me more creative to think about a way how I can use the things I have than just to go out and buy new stuff, too. And finally, I like the idea that the things I reuse aren’t wasted and that doing something myself using materials I already have is an easy way to sometimes take a step back from consumption (which I find a lot harder when I see these jeans I really really have to have).

What I kept and what I’m talking about is our old Ikea kitchen clock. When I bought it I painted the frame because I thought it was boring before and we try to keep a kind of red and white colour scheme in our kitchen (at least I do). But the paint has started to chip of and the clock hands couldn’t move anymore because the clock face has crimped, so I decided to give it a little makeover. Due to the whole renovating I didn’t have as much time this week, so the clock isn’t finished yet – that’s why today I leave you with a before picture and a little bit more talking than usually. I will show you the finished clock on Wednesday, so until then you can take a look at former projects I made using materials I already had, like Notebooks, Paper Birds, the button bracelet shown in this post and the button earrings shown here.

Thanks for reading!

I would love to know your opinion, do you rather throw stuff away or keep it? Which projects have you made with things or materials you already had or didn’t throw away?

Link Love #9

3762676738_673e9f8863_zImage by stevendepolo

This week was a little bit stressful, since our kitchen was renovated. Now it’s all beautiful,  the walls are white again and the plastering isn’t crumbling down from the ceiling any more, but unfortunately at the same time our boiler broke so we only have cold water now. Brrrr!
Anyway, here are some links to look into over the weekend.

  • I not only like to make my own books, but also like to buy cheap ones and decorate them. I guess next time I’ll make a Fabric Bound Notebook.
  • Learn how to bind an accordion book.
  • Even though I often skip breakfast because i don’t have the time and can’t eat directly after getting up, it’s my favourite meal of the day if I’m not in a hurry and can enjoy it in peace. These 25 breakfast recipes sound great for a weekend morning.
  • I found this Summer Prayer to be very inspiring. I think I will do my own!
  • Another thing I want to try is a new things list. I read about it on a few blogs, but really enjoyed to follow Sarah’s adventures.
  • I guess I wouldn’t dare to wear it, but I think this Cat Ears Bowler Hat is adorable!
  • Another really pretty DIY using stuff you already have is this Butterfly Bracelet made from Paperclips.

Have a relaxed weekend!

Art Journaling: Altered Images

alter-imagesIn my last Art Journaling Post I shared a page includeing an altered image. Today I’m going to show you what I did to the image. I use this technique when I don’t want to draw something (usually faces) but don’t want to use an image out of a magazine, either. Above you see the altered image on the left and the original one on the right.

Here’s how to do it:

  1. Chose an image you want to use and cut it out. You probably could first alter it and cut afterwards, but I find it easier to do it this way, since like this, I can see the outer lines of the image. DSC02271
  2. Thin down some Gesso with water, since you don’t want full coverage but still want to be able to spot the image.alter-images3
  3. Paint over the image using the gesso-water mixture, let dry. While drying, gesso usually brightens, so you have to decide if you’re satisfied with the opacity. If not, add a second coat of gesso and let dry again.alter-images4
  4. Paint and draw over the image however you like. I started by drawing the outlines with ball pen…alter-images5then I added some shadows and some colour to the face and the hands using watercolours….alter-images6and afterwards I painted the clothes using watercolours again.alter-images7Next, I used coloured pencils for some more colour and depth and drew the outlines, lashes and pupils with black felt pen. I also added some shadows with a ball pen.alter-images8Then I stupidly thought I needed some more colour pops and grabbed my oil crayons, which are usually great (thanks, Frau Koch!) but for this, they were just too much (in my opinion) and I liked the image better without them. But that’s how Art Journaling sometimes goes, so I’m sharing this step anyway.alter-images9

And that’s it!

The only thing that’s a little bit impractical is that you can’t draw or paint over the gesso with every kind of colour. Some kinds don’t really adhere to the gesso and even with watercolours and coloured pencils you have to use a lot of colour.

Do you like to alter images before using them? What kind of techniques do you use? If you know any other techniques or have some tips for me, please leave a comment!

The Small Things: Paula and Victor

pauli-und-victor This post is long overdue, since these two green fluffy guys may be small but for me, they are great. Their names are Paula (usually called Pauli) and Victor, so obviously Paula is a girl and Victor is a boy. I adopted them from my former room-mate, together with a third one, Kiwi. Kiwi has died in the meantime (he was older than these two, I guess), and even though I was very sad when he died, I have to say that Paula and Victor are better of without him. I know this sounds hard, but he wasn’t very nice to them most of the time, he definitely was the alpha animal and clearly domineered over the two little ones, so since he’s gone they seem to be much happier. I once tried to separate Kiwi from Paula and Victor, but they kept on calling each other so this didn’t work out either, and they rather seemed to be a little annoyed by him than being seperated.Now they kiss and feed each other all day (which wasn’t possible when Kiwi lived, since he always disturbed them and shooed them around) and seem to be madly in love with each other. victorVictor is the more agile one of them, he’s jumping around and singing all day. In the picture he apparently isn’t satisfied with his apple. They like cucumber way better, they love it!

pauliPaula is a little bit bitchy, but this apparently is normal for female budgies. Here she’s sitting on one of their swings, which is one of her favourite places.

They both aren’t able to fly, due to an illness called “Französische Mauser” in German, but I couldn’t find an English term. This means that they loose their feathers during the first moult like every other budgie, but in case of the illness the feathers don’t regrow properly or at all. I guess that Paula and Victor have less or deformed remiges, since this is the only part of their feathering where I can see anything unusual, apart from that they look fine.
They live in a cage landscape build from two cages, which is long, but rather shallow, so it’s not too bad when they fall (what sometimes does happen).
Actually, they can’t do anything, they aren’t tame (since they were too old to tame them when I got them), they can’t speak and they can’t even fly, but I can’t help it, I just adore them and could watch them all day long being cute and go on and on about them. I would love to do a regular series about them, but I think this would get boring soon for everybody else but me (but if you think otherwise, please let me know, I would love to tell you more about them. I’m actually fighting hard to keep it kind of short in this post).

The pictures are actually old ones, but since they hate everything unusual around their home, I spared them (and me, I always suffer along with them) to take new ones. And they look young as ever anyway.

If there’s anybody who’s the owner of budgies or likes to talk about budgies or wants to share his thoughts on Paula and Victor (aren’t they cute?), please leave a comment!

Link Love #8

5883409870_f2be84c162_zImage by athomeshesatourist

This week it was totally winter again, but since yesterday the sun is coming out, leaving me eagerly awaiting spring (again). Therefore amongst other things this week’s roundup includes some spring inspiration (meaning paper flowers) (again).

What left me a little bit lost the past days was the news that google reader is shutting down. I used it every day and for me it was the reader that met my demands best. Now I’m trying Bloglovin, which seems to be fine. Do you have any other recommendations for a good reader?

Have a good weekend and hopefully see you again next week!

You can make this! Washer and ribbon bracelet

tutbracelet1As I showed you on Monday, I have made quite a few bracelets over the years. One of my favourites is the one made of different ribbons and washers from the hardware store because of the combination of edgy and delicate materials. I put together a tutorial so you can make one, too.

You need:
tutbracelet2

  • About 15 washers from the hardware store, I used three different sizes
  • Three different kinds of ribbon; I used a wide flat leather strap, some kind of chiffon ribbon and a piece of black wool
  • Scissors
  1. Cut your ribbons to the same length, the length depending on how often you want to wrap the bracelet around your wrist. Mine was about 1m, but I think it’s best to try it out.
  2. Knot the ribbons together, close to one of the ends. If the overhanging ends are too long or not the same length, cut so it’s neat.tutbracelet3
  3. Pull the leather strap through the hole of the first washer, from bottom to top (see the picture).tutbracelet4
  4. Grab both the other ribbons and pull them through the hole of the washer, too, but this time from top to bottom (see the arrows in the next picture). This secures the washers but still lets you adjust their positions.
    tutbracelet5
  5. Add the next washer in the same way: first pull the leather strap through the whole of the washer, from bottom to top, than both the other ribbons from top to bottom.tutbracelet6
  6. Keep on adding washers until you’re satisfied with the amount. I like to alternate the different sizes.
  7. Add a last washer at the end where you didn’t make the knot before. Pull the leather strap through the washer and knot the leather strap with both the other ribbons. Cut off any overhanging ends.tutbracelet7
  8. Tie a second knot to the end where you made a knot at the beginning. The distance between the knots should be just large enough to pull  the washer you tied to the other end through.tutbracelet8
  9. Spread the washers evenly along the length of the ribbons….and your new bracelet is finished!
    tutbracelet9If you have any questions, please let me know! Which colours or kind of ribbons would you use? If you have any thoughts on this, I would greatly appreciate it, if you leave a comment!

Projects: Bracelets

bracelet2I noticed that my collection of selfmade bracelets is even bigger than my collection of selfmade earrings, which I showed you here (and a tutorial here).
All of the bracelets were quite easy to make.bracelet1The first one is finger knitted using stripes of old t-shirts. You can find a tutorial here. For number 8 I threaded different black buttons onto two thin elastic straps.bracelet3For number 3 I threaded black and red glass pearls as well as silver pearls onto a red and a black leatherstrap. All the pearls were remains from other projects.
I had a set of different red glass pearls which I used for number 4. I especially like the red polka dot ones, of course.bracelet5Number 5, 6 and 7 are just different little pearls threaded on elastics.bracelet4Number 2 consist of different straps and washers.bracelet6I’ll show you how I made number two in a tutorial on Wednesday. If you have any questions concerning the other ones, please let me know. bracelet7Which of the ones above is your favourite?
Have you made any bracelets?

Link Love #8

4607454800_03c383b79c_zImage by bigglesmith.

This week the sun came out for the first time since weeks, and yesterday it smelled like spring for the first time this year. While I actually enjoyed it, my relationship to the sun isn’t always that easy. As somebody wise said about the sun (freely quoted from Mr. mnerb, hello! :-)): “it promises you everything, but keeps nothing”. This doesn’t sound as good as it actually did as he said it in German, but anyway. Here are a few things to look at for the next rainy days.

Have a sunny weekend!