Thursday, December 29, 2011

I Invite You To Make A Goblin Plushie With STAEDTLER Fimo.

Some things you will need:

STAEDTLER Fimo soft in desired colour
STAEDTLER Fimo gloss varnish
1/4m of fun fur
Basic sculpting tools
Paint in pink and brown
Fine paint brush and soft mop brush
Sewing thread and needle
Beacon Adhesive's Fabri-tac

Here is a tiny smattering of tutorial snapshots. Follow the link after the pics to see the full video tutorial.

Follow this link to my youtube channel for a full video tutorial!


Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Some Christmassy Gift Highlights

It was a quiet and snow-less Christmas this year. We had a very restful couple of days here at home sharing too much food and some pudding made with Bailey's.

Auntie J and the A man sent this very cool and gonna stay out all year round ornament that is a mercury glass whale. I think I'm going to make it a tiny pot of geraniums to hang beside it even though Mr. Jimmy says it's the wrong kind of whale.

The lovely Deb has gifted us this "perfectly us" hand hooked rug made by her pal Patti Armstrong. She uses dyed nylons instead of wool to hook her pieces because she is allergic to wool. This piece was completely unexpected and I love it! It's also going to be an all year round piece.

I made this little guy for Maggs. It was almost impossible to keep it a secret. She kept walking into the room while I was working on it and I had to keep quickly covering up the pieces. She was surprised though and I think she was pleased.

Christmas day Maggs cracked open the clay I got her and started to make her own doll design like the goblin I had made her. She got this far and has decided it will be a pink elephant. I'll keep you posted on the results.

Hope you guys had a rest too.

Monday, December 26, 2011

Holiday Hilarity

We do enjoy ourselves.
Hope you get to spend the Holidays with folks you enjoy too.

Merry Christmas.

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Fimo Buttons for Knitting Projects

These button are so much fun to make. I really wanted to be able to use up some of the clay I have in the studio left over from old projects. I also really loved the idea of making my own buttons for my knitting projects. These look organic, almost like they're made from stone or bone. They were fun to make and only took a few minutes per button. They are addicting though and I spent almost two days playing with the process.

Here's how I did it.

To make these buttons you will need:

STAEDTLER Fimo in colours to match a knitting project (Keep it simple with no more than three or four colours)
Basic sculpting tools
A pasta roller for use with polymer clay or a clay rolling tool

STAEDTLER Fimo gloss varnish
Black pigment powder or eye shadow
A soft round paint brush

This is the project the left over clay came from. There is little wood canes and some turquoise and stone clay mixed. To see this project and the instructions for creating it. Grab a copy of PolymerCafe June 2011. Any clay colours that you like together will work. Try to match a knit project or use up some old clay and see what you come up with. Try to limit to no more than three or four colours.

I rolled out a light colour clay to a 1/4 cm thick sheet. Here I used Fimo effects 003 marble and some Fimo soft 39 peppermint that was previously mixed with marble to lighten it and a cane made from Fimo soft 7 caramel and 70 sahara. I cut up the clay into small shards and sprinkled them over the light coloured sheet.

I rolled this out in the pasta machine on the largest setting to blend it.

This is what it looks like after it had been folded and sent through the pasta machine five or six more times.

I tore off a piece of the almost blended clay and rolled it into a ball. I flattened the ball out with the palm of my hand against the table and shaped it by rolling it gently in my flattened palms until I liked the shape.

I picked a side to work on for the top of the button and started to make designs following the patterns in the clay colours. I used a stylus tool but a pencil or knitting needle tip would both be great tools here.

I kept adding lines and dots until I thought I was done. Then I used the end of a paint brush to push holes through the button. I pushed down through to the table, turned the button and remade the holes from the back to clean them up a bit.

I brushed some pigment powder in a shimmery black into the buttons surface with a soft brush. I dusted off the excess powder and baked the buttons for 15 minutes at 230 degrees F. Let the buttons cool off before the next step.

I used a medium grit sponge block nail file to sand the entire surface of the buttons. This sanding removed coloured powder from the high points of the buttons texture but left the colour in the grooves. It made them look old instantly. It was like finding treasure or being an archaeologist and discovering a specimen no one had ever seen before...... ok..... maybe I'm overstating. But it was very cool to see what happened when your design finally emerges. This would be a fun craft to do with little kids....... I might have to borrow some.

I finished the buttons off by adding a nice even coat of Fimo gloss varnish and letting it dry before coating the other side. I can't wait to add these to some of my knitting projects.

Sunday, December 18, 2011

Annual Holiday Crafting Session Begins..... or..... A Great Fimo Ornament Tutorial

Every year about this time, for the past eighteen years or so......

Oh..... has it been that many years? Oh my!

My girlfriend and I get together for a crafting day to finish up family gift making and get together for a good old chat. We had our Craft Session today and it was wonderful!

I finished up some presents that I will show a little later and Lynne made these gorgeous tree ornaments by embellishing clear glass balls with STAEDTLER Fimo.

Here are the things you will need to make six ornaments:

STAEDTLER Fimo soft in the following colours
white # -0
cherry red # - 26
emerald # - 56
lemon yellow # - 10

Fimo varnish in gloss
Fimo push molds Christmas design # -8725 06
6 clear glass ornaments
glitter in yellow, red and green
basic sculpting tools
Green mineral pigments or eye-shadow.
Soft paintbrush
Sanding block medium grit or spongy nail file

We started by cutting out some basic plaque shapes. You can make your own or print some templates from the Internets. We made them about 1/4 cm thick and made them fit on the balls we had. We rolled out worms of red green and white clay and twisted them together to make a candy cane worm to trim our plaques edges. We also used the Fimo Christmas push mould to create pine boughs and stars to decorate the ornaments.

After we had the plaques all cut and wrapped in candy cane worms, Lynne pressed a plaque onto each ornament's front. She pressed firmly but made sure not to leave dents and fingermarks.

Then it was time to decorate each ornament with the Fimo push mould bits. Lynne chose stars for one set and pine boughs for the other but there are many designs to choose from this one push mould set. She also added some little balls of red clay to the pine boughs and poked them in the middle with a pointy tool to set them into the clay pine boughs.

Lynne used a stylus tool to write messages onto the white plaque part of each ornament. Some have the year on them and others have names. If you aren't comfortable free handing this you could print some words out and trace them on first.

Next we rubbed some green mineral pigments onto the unbaked clay plaque part of each ornament. We made sure only to get the pigment powder onto the white part and really got it into the grooves of each letter.

We baked the ornaments with the plaques right on there. We put them on the wire wrack in the oven so they wouldn't roll around. We baked them for 15 minutes at 230 degrees and allowed them to cool off before the next step.

We used a sponge file to sand off the top layer of clay from each plaque and remove the pigment powder. It allows the pigment powder to stay in the groves made with the stylus tool. Dust the piece off well.

A nice even coat of Fimo gloss varnish on the plaque part of each ornament will make sure the pigment is permanent. Let it dry before moving on to the next step. Should only take as long as it takes you to drink a cup of coffee.

Next we added some Fimo gloss varnish to the berries and then sprinkled them with red sparkles. Let them dry and repeat with the green sparkles on the pine boughs and add some yellow sparkles to the stars on the other set of ornaments.

We let them dry in their plastic bulb holder.

But some juice glasses worked too.

We even hung a couple on the tree to see how they looked there. I think today was a pretty big success. I really love these ornaments! They were super fast and simple to create. Plus I got to spend a day with one of the sweetest people I know!

I love you my Lynnie!
Merry Christmas folks. I hope you get to spend time with some sweet people too.

Monday, December 12, 2011

Frosty Stiletto Nails

I've been pretty busy lately. So busy I haven't had time to do my nails. Today I made time. I wanted to have some frosty Stiletto nails to match our weather.

Here are the steps I took to make them.

I prepared and disinfected and primed my natural nails as usual. Then I put on the foils and reverse applied some transparent pink to my nail bed. It sticks up a bit at the edge of my nail and makes a little ledge at the smile line to keep the coloured acrylic from invading that space later. I added a very thin layer of clear and speckled it with some iridescent Mylar and some confetti sparkles.

I made some little balls of clear acrylic and laid them on the sparkle layer. I tried to keep the balls separated and sticking up as much as I could. You'll see why in the next few steps.

After the clear balls cured I added some white acrylic over them and packed it right on in there to make sure it hugged each little cranny. I also paid attention to the smile line and keeping that crisp.

Next I removed the foils so I could file the tip area to shape and take the lumps off the tip area exposing the clear sections or balls I made earlier. You can see right through there to the sparkle layer I made at the beginning.

I needed to smooth everything out and create a curve to strengthen the nail so I coated the whole works with a thin layer of clear acrylic and let it cure.

I gave it one final file over to make sure everything was smooth and shaped prettily.

I used white acrylic paint and a Heinz Jordan mini script liner to make some swirls on my thumb nail and ring finger nail. I dotted some swirlies there too and the rest of the nails got a dotted smile line.

I coated the nails in a clear UV gel top coat and cured it in the UV lamp for 2 minutes.

I kind of like these ones, even if they do make me think of chilly cold snow and icicles.

I kept them a nice short to mid length stiletto so I can get work done.

I can't wait to show you everything I've been working on but I have to keep some presents secret! Prying eyes you know!