December 2, 2013
A California print (part of her studio’s wall gallery) called out to me, and seeing that it was a commissioned piece from a friend, I thought up some ways I could make a similar poster for my home. As much as our family is starting to really enjoy (dare I say love? what?!) NC, our roots will always be in California.
Since the poster would hang somewhere in my living room, I knew I wanted my version to be a little more buttoned-down and tried to stay true to the actual outline of the state instead of a more interpretive, abstract look. Going off a printout, I freehanded the outline onto a velvety, black substrate I had on hand (old samples from a printing company) but still managed to mess up a few areas, most notably, my hometown — sorry Bay Area and San Jo!
With a sponge brush, I filled in the outline with size, a gilding medium that adheres the gold leaf to whatever surface you’re working on. You can find gilding kits at any craft store. Just make sure to pick up a sponge brush or two if you don’t already have that on hand.
Once the size is dried, carefully lay down your leafing sheets over the size, overlapping the edges of the sheets as you go. Smooth down with your hand or press with a completely dry sponge brush. Rub off the excess with your fingers and gently burnish the borders of the state.
With a clean, dry cloth, sweep off the gold dust and flecks from your print (vacuuming is the best way to clean off your floor and workspace). If you like, you can apply a thin layer with the protective coating that comes with the kit. I skipped that part and went straight to framing my finished print instead.
November 26, 2013
And…here are my final two projects for iVillage’s 30 Days of HoliDIY!
It’s no secret that I love most things modern and geometric so I came up with an easy way to make unique ornaments out of shrink film. If rustic simplicity is more your thing, check out my tutorial for a simple, wooden advent tree.
November 24, 2013
Like many of you, we have a big week ahead of us as we get ready to receive family and host Thanksgiving at our home here in NC. This will be our first time hosting and prepping a big dinner, which makes me excited (place settings!) and nervous (brining?!) all at once. But already having a giant turkey all snug in the freezer and plans to mix cream cheese into our T-day mashed potatoes gives me some peace of mind.
It’s been a while since I’ve made anything with kids not having to do with a Rainbow Loom, but Thanksgiving break will give us time for fun, seasonal hands-on crafts and activities. Crayola has put together an inspirational slide show of some easy projects. Check it out below!
This post was sponsored by Crayola.
November 21, 2013
My second project for iVillage’s 30 Days of HoliDIY is up today! Visit here for full instructions on making your own holiday card display. This DIY is much less intense than the dollhouse, but still in keeping with a simple, modern aesthetic!
September 26, 2013
To end the week, I have a fun giveaway for you. Hot Wheels recently sent us their car maker to try out and I can’t tell you how excited the boys were over creating and designing their own cars. It’s like the perfect collision (eh, accidental pun) of two worlds; cars and crafting!
The kit comes with enough supplies to make 10 car bodies. Only three chassis were included, but the kids enjoyed switching out the different bodies. Two types of molds output a car shape and a truck, all easily customizable with various decals.
The process was really simple; insert a plastic stick into the top of the car maker (a purple stick is already placed so the first car is inevitably purple), slide one of the molds into the car maker base, and (get this!) follow the voice instructions because the machine talks. And plays music, which only adds to the drama of the artistic process.
The car maker takes about 7-10 minutes to melt down the plastic stick (all done safely inside the car maker) after which you’re prompted by Mr. Hot Wheels himself to push down the lever. You’ll have to wait another 10 minutes for the plastic to cool down enough to handle, but everything is self-timed and the door at the base will pop open when ready.
A little tool helps you easily pop the car body off the mold. This part was a tiny bit messy, but overall it was a low-trash/debris project. Obviously the plastic isn’t as durable as its die-cast metal counterparts, BUT you get to add your own stickers — which the boys enjoyed.
This is definitely a favorite toy of ours. You can purchase directly from the Mattel website, but Mattel was generous enough to offer one lucky reader a kit of their own! To enter, simply leave a comment at the end of this post. Edited: Wanted to add that I just created a Facebook page for Ambrosia Creative. Feel free to leave a second comment/entry for yourself for liking my new Facebook page, thank you!
Giveaway closes October 7, 2013 and I will contact the winner by email. Good luck!