Thursday, November 29, 2012

A little box for a 7-year old girl

Hi everyone!

Xmas is coming and I have a few gifts to make. This year I have someone new on my list:  my niece's 7-year old stepdaughter, Riley.  I made her a little box where she can keep her treasures.

I used a wooden champagne box. These boxes have carved lettering and I filled in the small ones on the bottom with Spackle. I decided to cover the large ones.

A thin piece of plywood does the trick. I used glue to attach it. Riley loves Hello Kitty, so I decided to paint the little cat's face on it and her initial on the other side.

I first painted around the figures.  The little balls on the right are going to be the feet.

Masking tape to the rescue to finish the edges.

I thought the green added a nice touch.

The feet are screwed on from the inside.

This is the finished box. Notice that I went over the cat face and the initial with magic marker.  I then polyurethaned the  box.

Some inexpensive metal corners, a shiny hasp and lock, and you have it.  I added the polka dots with a store-bought stencil. I thought it needed a little more decoration. 

The tassel was only fifty cents at a trimmings store.  I used to make my own!  No more.  

Pretty paper glued over a piece of cardboard, covers the bottom of the box.

See you next time! Lola

Saturday, November 17, 2012

An oriental "rug".

Hi everyone.

I have been working on my rug and have not posted for a few days. It is painted on my hallway floor and it has both Islamic and William Morris designs. When I design something, I look through Google images and then adapt whatever I like to make my design work. After all the trouble I went through with this rug, I wish I had just copied the design from a real Oriental, of which we have several. I cut all new stencils for this one and I made it up as I went along! I didn't even measure, I eyed everything. You should have seen me trying to make the arabesques look like they made sense on both sides of the rug, since the spacing was off.  I doubt that anyone is going to look that closely!

This is not the first rug I have painted on this spot.  The old one, below, was painted over to make room for the new one!  I used stencils that I had used for other designs. We had it for many years and I wanted a new look.

The spider plant is painted on my kitchen door. The plant's leaves served as a decoration for this rug.

All I did was turn the stencil sideways. Another stencil that I had used in a bedroom worked well on the edge.

I started this "new" rug" two years ago, and never finished it.  Since my blog was not in existence then, there are no pictures of how I started it. However, I took enough pictures as I was finishing it so you can get an idea of how it was done.

For this rug I chose to paint the wood planks two different colors, since it looks more realistic.

 Let's focus on the red diamond below.  Each color was painted separately, the white, the red and then the green, in that order.  The different bands were not pre-planned. I just went with what looked good to me.
Of course, I decided ahead of time what colors I would use in the overall design.

Notice that the arabesque design around the red square is stenciled only on the right side. I then flipped the stencil and painted the left side.  See below.

The stencil was hard to manage because it was large, and the lines of the arabesque were thin.  I had to cut it twice since the first one tore. Notice how wide the "bridges" are.  Bridges in a stencil are the uncut pieces that connect the parts so the stencil does not fall apart.  I had to connect the pieces freehand. You do what you have to do.

 Before and after connecting the bridges in the light and the dark gray arabesques.

On another one of the squares, I had to paint a blue line and stencil diamonds on the dark green space. First, I painted the blue line using painter's tape. Then I used a stencil for the diamonds. It is the same stencil I used for the edge of the rug.

To complete the rug I stenciled a fringe on both ends. The rug is colorful and both my husband and I are happy with it!  Are you going to paint a rug in your apartment?  It does take time, but it is fun and a great way to cover a hallway.