Colored Sand Craft

My 2yr old and I had fun creating these colorful fish this weekend. Here’s how you can do it to!


What You Need & Where to Get it:

Instructions:

  • Pour small amounts of colored sand into several toddler friendly containers. I used small plastic snack bowls. We had one red, one blue, one yellow and one purple.
  • Allow your child to insert the funnel into the plastic fish and dump the sand into the funnel. A little goes a long way, so as long as there is only a little bit of sand in each container, you’ll be able to create more colorfully layered fish.
  • Tip: We made several fish pretty quickly, but my son still wanted to play, so I just let him dump a fish out and play with the leftover sand. Of course the colors got all mixed up, but he didn’t care and he was entertained for a while, so it was a win for both of us!
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Handmade Holiday Gift Ideas

With the tough economical situation this year, money for the holiday gifts is tight, but a popular solution to this dilemma is to make handmade presents. If you aren’t feeling crafty, or have no idea where to begin, you can find some fabulous handmade items for sale on sites like http://www.etsy.com. Etsy offers a variety of handmade gifts that will suite any budget. However, if you do want to try something crafty, here are a few ideas that are easy to make and won’t break the bank.

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HANDMADE CHRISTMAS ORNAMENT:

Ornament Stuffed With Gold Ribbon

Plain glass ornaments can be found at your local craft store. I got a box of 4 for $2. With a little time and a few simple embellishments, you can turn them into beautifully decorated ornaments that will make a perfect gift for a friend. The ornament in the picture above I made by stuffing it with gold ribbon and then I wrote Merry Christmas on it with a metallic god pen.

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HANDMADE GREETING CARD SET:

Variety Set of Handmade Cards

You can get a set of blank cards at almost any craft shop and personalize them with stamps, speciality paper or scrapbook items. I decided to make a set of cards to fit a few different occasions. I made a few happy birthday, get well, thank you, and congratulation cards that I plan to give as a gift set to a few of my family members.

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KIDS CRAFT BOX:

DABBLE Craft Box for Kids

This gift is perfect for a child, or even a novice crafter. Get a shoe box, or a pastry box and put a few uncompleted craft projects in the box. Just make sure you’ve included all the parts for the craft kit. For instance if you’re giving wooden projects to paint, include the brush and the paints. I created a few craft boxes (like the one pictured above) that I sold through Dabble Arts & Crafts. For $15 I have included a wooden frame, ornament, paints, brush, and fun dough.

OTHER CRAFTY IDEAS:

A DATE IN A BOX:

I gave this gift a few times and each time I do it a little bit differently and I try to cater it to the couple I am giving the gift to. It’s pretty simple, get a large shoe box, or a cake/pastry box (you can find a variety of boxes at Micheal’s for $1 or less). Decorate the outside of the box with decorative paper and the couple’s name. Inside the box, you can put all the items they will need for a romantic “date night”. Some ideas are: a bottle of wine, a blockbuster gift card, a bag of popcorn, dessert mix or chocolates, a massager, oils, basically anything that will fit in the box and can be used on a date!

COOKIE INGREDIENTS & RECIPE IN A JAR:

This crafty gift has been around forever, but I just love it because who doesn’t love cookies? You can usually find a set of empty mason jars at your grocery store, fill them with all the dry ingredients you’ll need to make your cookie recipe. Type up the recipe instructions and print it on decorative paper then glue it to the jar. Wrap a ribbon around the jar with a gift tag adn your done!

HAND-PAINTED WINE OR MARTINI GLASS:

I have seen a ton of these at small boutiques from Maryland to California and I decided to try some of my own. It’s an easy way to personalize a gift not just for Christmas, but also for bridal showers, birthday parties and more. I found the cheapest set of glasses at Linens N Things, or Bed Bath & Beyond because you’ll get more for you money. They cost about $12 for 12 glasses. However, you can buy a single glass at places like Home Goods, or Ross.

Once you’ve picked the glass you like, you then need to get special gel pens that will write on glass (at your local craft store of course). Have fun and decorate the glass with the recipient’s name, the event, flowers, etc.. To set the paint, you will usually have to bake the glass for about 10 minutes or so after you decorate it (the instructions on the pens will tell you if you need to do this or not). If you’ve decorated a martini glass, it’s neat to also attach a favorite martini recipe to the glass with a special tag.

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There you have it, a few simple crafty ideas to use for gift giving this holiday season. Hope you enjoy making your handmade gifts and have a happy holiday season!

-Jeni

Dabble Arts & Crafts

http://www.dabblearts.com

Bridal Shower Party Favor

DABBLE Bridal Favor

DABBLE Bridal Favor

I have done a few bridal showers, baby showers, and dinner parties in my time… so coming up with unique party favors is one of my favorite things to do. This idea for a potted flower picture would work great for a bridal shower or a summer luncheon. It’s super easy to do and costs about $3 per favor.  You can personalize each place marker with your guest’s photo, or use photos of the guest of honor.

Here’s what you’ll need:

* Scissors

*Craft Glue

*Photo

*Circle Cutter (or you can cut it by hand)

*Stem Wire (found in the floral section of craft stores)

*Foam Ball (also in floral section)

*Small Flower Pot

*Silk Flower

* Sheet of Green Felt

PartyFavorSupplies

First, place a small amount of glue on the bottom of the foam ball and place it inside the flower pot.

Then, cut a small sqaure out of your felt sheet and glue it over the foam ball.

DabbleFavor2

Then, cut a 1 inch x 4 inch (approx) strip of felt out. Cut fringe into the strip and glue it inside the flower pot.

Cut fringe into the strip

Cut fringe into the strip

 

Measure the ribbon to fit around the top of the flower pot, cut it and use a small amount of glue to make sure it stays in place. Tie a ribbon in the front.

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Cut your picture out and glue it to the front of the silk flower.

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Coil the stem wire. You want to make sure that you have at least 2 tight coils. You don’t want to many coils because the picture won’t lay in the coil very well.

DabbleCoil

Put the flower/picture into the coil and stick the stem into the middle of your flower pot.

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That’s it! You have a personalized party favor that guests can take home.

For more craft tips or information, check out www.dabblearts.com.

Enjoy!

-Jeni

Memory Box Makeover

So I have a problem, I like to save things. It causes clutter and it drives my husband crazy, but there are just those things that I don’t want to get rid of- things that remind me of a great trip, a romantic dinner, a thoughtful card… you get the idea. Anyway, I had this ugly shoebox holding most of those types of random things from when my husband and I started dating– 7 years ago.

THIS IS THE UGLY SHOEBOX BEFORE:

Dabble Box BEFORE

I finally decided to do something about the ugly box when I was cleaning up the office, and I had an idea of a way to do a simple “makeover” without spending a lot of time or money. So here it is, the memory box makeover. Simple, Quick, and Cheap!

AFTER:

DabbleBox2

Here’s what you’ll need:

* Shoebox

* Roll of Contact Paper (I found mine at Home Depot, for $7)

* Scissors

* Construction paper, tape, & any type of embellishments to decorate your finished box.

Before you begin, here’s a little tip about the contact paper, it’s not super tacky which is great because you can peel it up and reapply it if you lay it down crooked, or if you see an air bubble. The most frustrating part of this project for me was the air bubbles. Just go slow when you are adhering it and make sure to smooth it down as you go to avoid air bubbles.

Step One: Measure the box base and cut the contact paper to fit. (Use the handy guides on the contact paper to make straight cuts).

DabbleBox3Cut the contact paper to fit the size of the box from the base up to the sides.

DabbleBox4Peel the protective paper off and pull up the sides to adhere it to the box. Be sure to smooth the paper as you apply it, otherwise you will end up with a bunch of air bubbles!

DabbleBox5To fold the corners over, make a small cut right at the edge of the corner, then fold the contact paper to the inside of the box.

DabbleBox6Now that the base is finished. Repeat the same steps for the top of the box.

DabbleBox6Cover the top of the box, then cut small incisions into the corners to fold each flap in.

Close Up of Edge Cut

Close Up of Edge Cut

Fold the edges into the box top.

DabbleBox8Your finished with covering the box. Now for the fun part, decorate it with a stamp, sticker, or any embellishments you may have lying around. I chose a MEMORIES sticker ($1) that I adhered to a piece of blue construction paper.

Memory Box Makeover Complete!

Memory Box Makeover Complete!

Crafty Candleholder

I was at the $1 store and found these scouring pads. I was going to use them to distress paper for another project, but realized when I opened them that they were not rough enough. The material was really soft and pliable. I started pulling at it and thought it could work as an interesting cover for something…

I found a plain clear candleholder that I already had and it worked perfectly. I ended up with this really cool candle holder.

DabbleCandle1

 

Here’s how you can do it to!

Supplies:

*Candleholder

*Scouring Pad/Sponge (I used a silver one from the $1 store, but the copper kind will work too)

 *School Glue

*Paint Brush

 

Supplies

Supplies

 

 

Mix the glue with a little bit of water. Paint the glue all over the vase.

 

Stretch the scouring pad out so that you can get it over the vase. Pull it over the entire vase until you are happy with how it looks. 

 

Stretch the scouring pad.

Stretch the scouring pad.

 

 

Scouring pad stretched around the candle holder.

Scouring pad stretched around the candle holder.

 

 

Let the glue dry (at least 2 hours). Although it takes awhile to dry, the school glue mixed with water is the best because it will dry relatively clear and not goopy looking. Then, put a candle in it and admire your work!

 

Candle holder complete

Candle holder complete

This craft cost me $1, because I already had the candleholder, the brush and the glue!

I’d love to know what you think! Leave a comment and let me know if you liked this craft. And, if you try it, send me a picture and let me see how yours turned out!

DABBLE Scrapbook Inspired Frame

I saw these adorable frames while I was traveling recently and I thought there had to be a way to make them myself for cheaper. It took some planning, but I figured it out, so now I want to pass on this technique to you.

Scrapbook Inspired Frame

Scrapbook Inspired Frame

First, I started with a wooden frame that I already had on hand. Price $1

Plain Wooden Frame

Plain Wooden Frame

Then, I painted the frame using Liquitex acrylic paint. I found that when painting on wooden opjects, it is best to use a foam brush because it fills the cracks in the wood frame nicely. Plus the paint turns out smooth and even.

Painted Wooden Frame

Painted Wooden Frame

Next, I picked from my assortment of scrap paper to coordinate with the color of the frame. I decided on a flower pattern that matched the color I painted on the frame. I decoupaged the paper to the frame by soaking the paper in water for 10 seconds (until it relaxed a bit),

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I applied a thin layer of adhesive (also by liquitex, but a thin layer of Elmer’s glue also works) and then I placed the paper on the frame. I smoothed out the wrinkles and let it dry.

paper adhered to frame

paper adhered to frame

Once the frame was dry, I cut the excess paper from the center of the frame with an xacto knife. I then glued  paper flowers with brads to add some decoration the other 1/2 of the frame. I like making asymetrical pieces, I feel it makes for a more interesting outcome. I let the project dry over night, then I was done!

The finished product!

The finished product!