Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Wonderful Wreaths.... An Easy How To!

So I decided to throw in a quick and simple craft to give you a break from the hand made ornament work :P

This Craft is simple, fairly inexpensive, and will have all of your friends wanting to know where you got it!

The wreath has now become a symbol of Catholic and Christian faith. The symbolism of evergreen is the continuity of life and the prickly holly is a reminder of Cross. The circle of the wreath is without beginning or end meaning that God is eternal, soul immortal and life everlasting. The wreath is decorated with nuts, pine cones and other seedpods which symbolize resurrection and life.

~To Start~

You Will Need:

1 Evergreen Wreath ( i prefer to use artificial materials, so they can be used year ofter year)
Several different types of artificial poinsettia, leaves, holly berries etc. (Michael's and Walmart have lots)
1 Roll of Ribbon (choose a color that goes well with your flower choice)
1 String of Indoor Lights (a string of 35 is plenty)
1 Hot Glue Gun (and lots of glue sticks!)

Step One:

Fluff out the wreath so it looks nice and full! You don't want to have a wreath that looks small and sickly!

Step Two:

Start wrapping your wreath with the string of lights (always test them first to make sure they work). Start from the end of the strand (where the plug is) and wrap the lights through the wreath, making sure all of it is covered!

Step Three:

Make sure that the part of your wreath that has the plug , is the bottom. You do not want to have the plug at the top, it makes it difficult to plug in, and looks silly!

Step Four:

Start wrapping your wreath with the ribbon. make sure to leave space in between each wrap to let the greenery show. You can tie the two ends together to finish it, or hot glue them together. (make sure this is done on the back of the wreath, and not the visible front part)

Step Five:

Take some time to go through the different flowers, leaves, berries and pine cones that you have purchased for the project. Pick out your favorites, and pop them off the plastic stems! I usually take all of the flowers apart when I buy them, and mix and match with leaves and berries from other bunches.

You have a glue gun for a reason, so don't be scared to get creative. The more creative you get with your arrangements, the nicer they look!

Step Six:

Lay out your flower arrangements, and other pieces onto the wreath. DO NOT GLUE ANYTHING UNTIL YOU HAVE LAID EVERYTHING ON THE WREATH AND DECIDED ON A FINAL PLACEMENT. Trust me, if you start gluing to early, you'll end up tearing it apart and re doing it a bunch of times, it's a huge piss off, and a waste of time and glue!

Step Seven:

Once you have found the perfect placement, start gluing! Use lots and lots of glue to ensure a secure hold. (Make sure to only glue onto the evergreen, and not your strand of lights!)

Step Eight:

Plug it in, and let the beauty of your creation fill you with the "Christmas Warm and Fuzzies" :)

***If you have made a wreath of your own, I would LOVE to see pictures and post them in a later entry***

"To send light into the darkness of men's hearts - such is the duty of the artist."  ~Schumann

Monday, November 15, 2010

Paper Ornaments Part 1

Well, It;s been a few days since my last post. I decided to have a craft free long weekend :P...

Now that we are past Remembrance Day, the next big event is of course....Christmas. So keeping with that upbeat spirit, this week is going to be a week of Christmas Craft How To's. These are great little things you can make for yourself, or to give to others.

Every year for the past 3 years, I have given hand made gifts to my family for Christmas. I like it because it is a little bit less expensive than buying gifts, and much more personal.

One of my favorite crafts (and the most time consuming) is my paper ball ornament. There are a few different designs that you can do with this, but I'm going to show you one of the nicer ones.


You will need:

1- Pair of Scissors
1 - 2 3/4" Styrofoam Ball
2 - 150 pack of Straight Pins
2 - Rolls of Wrapping Paper (different colors)
1 - Roll of Ribbon
1 - Thimble

Once you have all of your supplies, you are ready to start your prep.

To make this ornament, you need to cut out 40 - 50, 1.5 inch squares of wrapping paper (of each colour).
In total, you should have between 80 - 100 wrapping paper squares. **They do not have to be exactly 1.5 inches, this is just a guide line.

Once you have your squares cut out,now it is time to fold them! You are going to be folding them into triangle shapes. The way that I do this is to fold your square in half, then on the creased edge, fold your two ends into the middle.  They should look like this when you are finished.

When you have folded all of your squares, you are ready to start pinning!

To start, you are going to choose one of your colors of triangles. For this ornament, I started with my silver wrapping paper.

To Begin, you are going to take one of your triangles and pin the top point into your Styrofoam ball. Gently stretch the bottom two points down on to the ball and pin those in as well. (Now would be a great time to mention that you should wear your thimble on your index finger to push in the pins. Unless you have super callist fingers, it is going to be uncomfortable and painful by the time you are done!)

When your fist triangle is pinned on, move on to your second. You are going to line up this new triangle to the last, so that the top points are side by side, and the side edge is touching. Pin this triangle on the same way you did the last. When this is pinned on, your Styrofoam ball should look like it has one large triangle pinned to the top.

You are then going to pin on two more triangles in the same way you did the last, until it looks like one large square is pinned on the top.

It's OK if there is a bit of over hang from the wrapping paper
it will be covered up with more layers soon.

You now have your ornament started... Tired Yet? :P.... I know it seems like a very long process, but trust me, it is worth it to see your finished product!

Now you are going to use your second color of wrapping paper for the next layer (they will alternate back and forth from now on) we'll call this color #2 for reference

Taking one of your #2 colored triangles, you are going to pin the top corner a fer centimeters below one of your #1 colored triangles already on the ball. Make sure that the point of #2 is centered under #1, or it will look funny. Pin the other two corners of the triangle down, and repeat the process for the other three #1 triangles.

When you have finished this step, your ornament should look like this.

You should have an X shape of #1 colored paper visible under the #2 color.

Now comes the tricky part. Take one of you #2 triangles, and pin in in the space between the other #2 triangles. The top point should be centered in the middle, and lined up with the other two points on either side. (the three points lined up should look like a W shape). Pin the other two points down, and repeat the process until the other three spaces have been filled. When this is done, there should be a small portion of #1 paper showing at the very top, in a star shape.

Star shape at the top of the ornament.

You've now got two layers of your ornament done.  Check back in tomorrow, and I'll show you the next steps to complete your hand made paper ornament!

"Crafting is the hand print of all culture" ~ Unknown

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Day 3..... Never Forget

It's now day 3 of posting (day 4 technically, since this is being posted much later than i wanted it to be)

Today's project, a pencil drawn tribute to our veterans.

Honestly, the picture speaks for itself. So instead of going on about it, I'll leave it up to you to draw your own thoughts and conclusions. I took several pictures while completing the piece, so you can see it in all the stages to completion.

This is dedicated to my Pepe, Jean Paul Landry. Love you Pepe :)
(hopefully someone with computer skills will eventually show him :P)

Canadian Armed Forces Crest

Adding in the Poppies

Adding in the Air Force, Navy, and Army Silhouettes

Finished Picture, with shaded in silhouettes
and words.
"Always & Forever, We Will Remember"

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Day 2... November Lillies

Here we are at Day 2, and as promised, I have a painting to unveil today. This acrylic painting was commissioned for miss Chantelle as a house warming present for her new apartment.

This is what I've titled "November Lillie's". It is a painting of the Stargazer and Calla Lily flowers. I chose these two flowers quite simply for the reason that they are mine and Chantelles favorite flowers (Hers being Lillie's in general, and mine being the Calla Lily).

When I was working on this particular piece, I decided to check into the meanings and significance of each flower. The common description for the lily family as a whole, is purity and beauty. When I looked into these flowers specifically, the meaning of the Stargazer Lily (the pink and white flower in the painting)  is that of Prosperity and Aspiration. I found it rather fitting that this was the flower I chose to represent Chantelle, because she is such a strong person with so many things she aspires to do.

In first choosing the Calla Lily, I had no idea what its meaning was. I just thought it was a really beautiful flower, with a simplistic design. It turns out that the meaning of the Calla Lily is "Magnificent Beauty".

So, having found these meanings, I decided that this piece wouldn't be complete without the true significance for each flower depicted on it.


***I'm sure you're wondering if there are any pieces that aren't for Chantelle, and I promise that tomorrow is something completely different :P***

Tomorrows piece is a pencil drawing, for Remembrance Day. It is dedicated to all those men and women who have served for their country in the past, those who are serving in the present, and those who will come to serve in the future.

Enjoy your Wednesday!

And remember, "An artist cannot fail; it is a success to be one." ~ Charles Horton Cooley

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Day 1, Here We Go...

And so we begin,

So this begins my daily chronicle of my daily art projects.

Today's work, pub crawl Tshirts... I know it doesn't sound very "Artsy" or complicated, but it is for my friend Chantelle's 19th Birthday. For my 20th birthday her and three friends threw me a very epic and detailed "Surprise Pirate Party", so i figured planning a pub crawl was the least i could do to repay the favor.

So here is the design, the two pictures are of the front and back of the shirt.

The front being the "Chantelle's Finally +19" side, and the back being the "Live it Up..." quote with the logos of the different clubs we will be hitting up that evening,

The plan for the tshirts is to be an iron on template (and yes i have a copy with the images and words inverted so they wont be backwards on the finished product! :P )

So here it is... my pub crawl tshirt for my girl Chantelle!

Stay tuned for tomorrows upload... an acrylic painting :)

Happy Crafting!