Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Patriotic Tulle Wreath

Last year, I made a quick {Tutu} for my daughter to go with her Patriotic outfit for the Fourth of July.  Over the almost year, I constantly saw the Red, White, & Blue tulle in my cratt drawer and knew there was something to be made with them.

About a week before Memorial Day, it came to me.  A wreath!  But, it couldn't be a plain wreath, there had to be something else to go with it. (Seriously, though, I didn't see THIS other fabulous wreath until I started mine--- AND I picked up the Family Fun magazine and they had a different Tulle wreath as well.  I swear I had the idea too and didn't copy.)

Then, when we went hunting for a flag to hang outside our house, I had another idea--- a flag...

Since I'm currently in a 'delicate condition,' I had just enough energy to finish this project yesterday... a few days late for our Memorial Day celebrations.  Good thing I've got the Fourth of July AND the Olympics coming up!  Now I have TWO excuses to keep it up all summer.

Gather It:
  • Wreath form: Styrofoam, wire, straw--- still wrapped, you get the idea
  • Red, White, & Blue Tulle (I got mine at HL  25 yd rolls for 2.99 or 3.99--- use coupons over a couple of weeks or watch out for whne the tulle is on sale)
  • 99 cent American Flag
  • White paint
  • scrap plywood, wood plaque
  • red vinyl or paint
  • Mod Podge
  • Glue Gun & Stick

Create It:
  1. First, cover the wreath.  I cut my tulle as a went with lengths between 12-18 inches, this is completely personal preference.  If you want a more uniformed look, cut your tulle, at the beginning all the same length.
  2. After you have some cut tulle, start wrapping,  I folded my tulle in half, looped it around the wreath, and then pulled the ends through the loop of the tulle.  Then, to keep it in place, I tied a knot.  Continue until the whole wreath is covered.  This process takes a little while, so it wouldn't hurt to do this while chatting with friends, watching your kids play, listening to a book... you get the idea.(Sorry for the lack of pictures, one of these days I'll remember... hopefully it won't take me giving birth before I remember...)
  3. If you don't want the flag, then TA-DA, you're done!  If you do, now is time to pull out the wood.  Mr. Nag had some extra plywood in the garage, so he cut one to the length of the flag I found.  I wanted my wreath to have a saying on the bottom, so we added 2 inches to the width.  Paint the wood white, front and back.  Let it dry.
  4. Remove the flag from the pole it came with (or have your 2-year-old 'accidentally' break it) and prepare to mod podge it to the wood, once the wood it dry.  Only apply MP to the part of the wood under the flag.
  5. While you wait for the first layer of MP to dry, cut out the vinyl saying, or paint it on.  I have a Silhouette, so I quickly whipped up what I wanted it to say.  As always, I'll send you the file, if you have one.
  6. Transfer the vinyl, then apply one last coat of MP to the whole plaque.
  7. Hot glue the plaque to the wreath, and a ribbon to the back for hanging.
  8. Step back and break into a chorus of "God Bless America" (it was in my mind because of the quote.)

I thought about going back and making it look more uniform around, but honestly I like it in it's non-perfected state.  Plus, I can say it looks more like a firework that way, right?

I link up {HERE}.


Thursday, May 24, 2012

Master Makeover: Repurposing Lamps

UPDATE:  These lamps were chosen as one of the Top-Ten for The CSI Project in the Lamp Challenge.  Thank you!

First master bedroom post {HERE}.

Our lamps, pre-master re-do, were from IKEA.  Nice & functional, but didn't give out a lot of light, so I knew they would get replaced, eventually.

When we got the furniture set, it also had 70s-style gold lamps (with pleated shades) to go with it.  Definitely NOT going to fit the feel of the room.  However, with a little bit of spray paint and the right fabric remnants, I was able to help them fit the decor perfectly.

I LOVE how they look now.  It was super-simple too.

  • old lampstand
  • spray paint
  • spray primer
  • plain white lamp shade (I got mine at Target)
  • fabric (I needed roughly a 1/2 yd for two medium-sized shades)
  • spray adhesive
  • scissors

  1. Prime & Paint the stand.  We got Valspar gray primer & Rust-oelum Hammered Metal paint.
  2. While that's drying, work on the shades.  I wanted the crisp lines of a square-shade, so keep that in mind, as we go.  If you have a cylinder shade, skip to step 6.
  3. Spray one side of the shade with spray-adhesive.  I worked on the long sides first.  Then, place it on the wrong side of your fabric, preferably near an edge, so you don't waste any fabric.  Cut a 3/4 inch border around the glued side, so now you are just working with the bit of fabric on the shade.
  4. Spray the corner of your shade and press the extra fabric, gluing it down to the shade.  Repeat on the other side.  Then work on the top & bottom seams, spray the shade and wrap the fabric around the little metal bars.
  5. Repeat steps 3 & 4 for the other long side.  Then repeat for the short sides, however, there is ONE BIG difference.  When you go to do the corner seams, tuck in your extra fabric underneath itself, then glue it down to the corner.  This makes the seam flush with the corner & not frayable (it might be a word).
  6. FOR A CYLINDER SHADE:  Congratulations!  You will not have to piece it together.  Simply, spray the adhesive onto the shade, sections at a time.  Then press the fabric onto the sprayed section.  Continue the whole way around your shade.  Just before the last section, measure out the fabric you need to finish the cover, add 3/4 inch to that, then cut.  Continue, by cutting a 3/4 inch border around the top & bottom.  Tuck in the extra 3/4 for the seam, then spray it on the shade.  Finish the top & bottom seams by spraying the shade  and wrapping the fabric around the small bars.
  7. Step back and admire your ability to make something old... new again!

Super simple and it adds so much to a room!

I link up {HERE}.


Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Master Makeover: The Bed

So--- my excuse THIS time (for not blogging so much) is that I'm pregnant.  I'm actually almost 24 weeks along, which is why all of my blogging (including our family one) has suffered dearly.  He's a boy and due mid-September.  We're really excited, especially since I had two miscarriages last summer.

I haven't stopped creating (you could even say my body is doing the ultimate of creating right now, ha), so I have A LOT of past crafts to share (including travel ideas & a Star Wars Birthday Party).

Today's is actually a recent story.  Since Mr. Nag and I got married (EIGHT years this summer--- whoa), we have never had a great Master Bedroom.  In college, we started off with a full-sized mattress, rented from the school.  A few months into that we bought a barely-used queen-sized mattress for super cheap, since the couple we bought it from didn't want to lug in across the Atlantic (completely understand).  As of two weeks ago, we still slept on that mattress.

When we moved into our first home, one of the first things on my list (besides organizing my pantry) was to work on, little by little, our Master Bedroom.  I really like the Oriental-style of design, especially for a room that's supposed to take me away from the chaos of every-day life.  So, keep that in mind as we go.

Last summer, we painted.  Took the standard 'toasted almond' color out and brought it two shades of blue.

It made a world of difference.

Then, in March, we found out that Mr. Nag's step-mom was moving across the country and wanted to give us the California-King Master Bedroom furniture set my father-in-law and mother-in-law bought when they got married... 30 years ago.  It was even complete with a waterbed.  Totally 70s.  We really wanted it, but were slightly discouraged at how DATED it was.  Deep dark brown stain, brass/gold hardware, the works.  But, we were determined, all we had to do was chemically strip and sand the stain.  And by we, I mean, Mr. Nag because I was barely out of my first trimester and banned from helping.  My part of the help was picking out the stain color. :)

Here's the bedroom after the paint, but before updates. 
Megan--- Mule--- painted the kanji above our bed a couple years ago.  The color palette of the room comes from a Japanese picture we have hanging on the wall opposite our bed.

After a couple months of many nights in the garage, he completed the bed two weeks ago.  Here's the  in progress after (ignore my pregnancy body pillow on the floor):

We absolutely LOVE it.  He still has an armoire, dresser and nightstands to re-do; it's his 'before the baby comes' project.  When he does, I'll hound him more about tips & tricks he has to re-finish furniture.

A close-up of the stain:

To fix the bed, because we weren't about to keep the waterbed, we just updated the plywood-base and bought a new memory-foam mattress on Amazon.  We let it poof up right in the frame, so it fits perfectly.

Next: The new lamps.

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Disney's 10 Princesses

I should have posted this a while ago. The Princess Merida charm that I made started a new adventure. I decided that I wanted to make Disney's 10 Official Princesses. And I say "Official" because there are plenty of princesses that get snubbed by Disney. (Eilonwy from Black Cauldron, Kida from Atlantis, etc.) I may get to the 'unofficial' ones eventually, but these sure took a lot longer than I thought they would! There were a few of these that I figured would be super easy to make, but they turned out to be deceptive! Especially since I'm using colored polymer clay. The only painted things are the faces. I'm pretty happy how they turned out. It sure was fun. ;)

Sorry about the column of pictures. I couldn't get them to sit side-by-side since Blogger changed their settings. It's really weird. If anyone can tell me how without needing to write a bunch of code, I would appreciate it.

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Mule's Crafting Once Again!

Hey, everyone! This is Mule of Mule 'n Nag Crafts finally posting again. And why am I blogging again? I've graduated college and now have free time. What a concept. =O

I thought that I would go ahead and show everyone what I have been up to since I've been home. ART. Yeah, I now have time for art again. Hopefully I'll be able to find a nice balance between that, reading, writing, and other things that I want to do.

This is an acrylic painting triptych based on the movie My Neighbor Totoro. I've had the idea for some time but it wasn't until a few days ago that I could finally get to painting this. I'm glad that I did, but now I don't have a spot for them. Oh well.

I follow an artist on deviantART who goes by DragonsAndBeasties. Not too long ago she put up a video tutorial on how she makes her dragons. I decided to take a crack at it. The blue one was my first attempt but I ran out of navy clay to do the wings. The next dragon is done in a glow-in-the-dark clay and since it's considerably smaller than the other I was able to do the wings. I like how they turned out and hope to develop my own item that can transcend ages and groups that I can make and sell from what I've learned.

I'm pretty excited about this Friday. While I was messing with clay yesterday I thought it would be fun to make a couple of things that I could wear to The Avengers. I decided to make an Iron Man pendant to wear as a necklace and the A from The Avengers logo as earrings. They should be fun to wear whenever I see it. We're still not sure if we're going at midnight, yet.