Friday, May 28, 2010

Frugal Friday...and Other Shimmery Ideas

Shimmery is definitely in these days, but as with all scrapping supplies, stocking up on all the colors of shimmery mists can prove to be very expensive. So I set out this week to see what recipes there were out there for homemade shimmer mists…and YouTube proved to be very fertile ground for videos. After weeding through tons of videos I tried it out and here is what I found.

The recipe is pretty basic, shimmer mist is just VERY watered down acrylic paints (definitely use the cheap stuff; don’t waste your artist’s acrylics on this project). There are two ways you can add the shimmer to the mist; by using a metallic paint or by adding Perfect Pearls (by Ranger) or Pearlex Mica Powder (by Jacquard)…I even saw a suggestion on using eye shadow! If you use Pearlex or eye shadow for the shimmer, you also need to add a fixative to the mist…here we go:


Small spray bottle (1-2oz.)

Warm Water

Acrylic Paint

Perfect Pearls – optional


Pearlex or eye shadow and white glue (such as Aileen’s Tacky Glue) – optional


Fill the spray bottle about ¾ full with warm water

Add a generous glop of acrylic paint (about 3-4 tablespoons)

If you are not using metallic paint, add about ½ teaspoon of Perfect Pearls

Shake and spray…simple!

In this sample, the pink, blue, yellow and green shimmer mist all use Perfect Pearls, the purple shimmer mist used purple paint and metallic gold paint.

The green shimmer mist is a combination of yellow and blue paints…so the possibility of colors is almost endless!

If you use Pearlex or eye shadow in place of the Perfect Pearls also add about ½ teaspoon of white glue to insure that the shimmer of the Pearlex or eye shadow does not rub off the final project. (I did not try this recipe out because I didn’t have any spare eye shadow…but I want to, to see if it works).

I also tried using ink instead of acrylic paint…it worked, but the resulting spray is far more translucent than the shimmer mist using the paint…not sure if I would waste my re-inkers on this, since they are so much more expensive than paint.

You can see how much more translucent the ink spray is versus the yellow paint spray…

And finally, here is a quick page I threw together using my sample paper…

And the tally is:

Cost: Varies…I had Perfect Pearls in my stash, but if you buy them they are about $3 for one pot, or $15 for a set of 4. I spent $1.39 on the spray bottles (from Sally’s Beauty Supply), and $0.97 on the paint from Wal-Mart. A bottle of metallic paint was $1.29.

Cats Annoyed: Not a single one! Can you believe it?!?!

Time: Less than 5 minutes to get everything put together.

Skill Level: basic

So there it is homemade shimmer mist! Easy Peasy…and Cheap! Cheap!

Thursday, May 27, 2010

Mini Vacation...and Other Natural Wonders

We spent a nice long weekend in Palm Springs...a much needed mini-vacation.

We spent time with family...saw tons of baby hares (so cute!)...I learned to play golf....

...and on our drive back home to Northern California, we drove through the Joshua Tree National Park. This is really an amazing geological area! A must see, if your ever in the south east part of California!

Friday, May 21, 2010

Frugal Friday...and Other Uses for Raffle Tickets

Throughout the year I get offered chances to win raffles…raffles at school functions, raffles at scrapping functions, even a raffle at a plant sale at the local community college. I always keep the raffle tickets to use in scrapping. They come in all sorts of colors from tan to blue to red and even yellow. Sure, they aren’t as pretty as say Tim Holtz Adage tickets, but they work…and they are free!

I use both the fronts (with all the numbers) and the backs of the tickets in my layouts, but nine times out of ten I make them look sort of vintage-y (and if that isn’t a word, it should be!).

Here’s what I do, in five simple steps…

Step One: Ink and/or distress

I usually ink the edges and sometimes ink lightly over the top with distressing ink. Chalk ink on the edges would work just as well. Additionally you can distress the edges of the ticket for a really worn look, although I didn’t have that idea until after I made these tickets…well, next time.

Step Two: Apply Glue

Next you want to cover the entire top of the ticket in glue, but be sure to use hard drying glue like Diamond Glaze or Glossy Accents. Apply a fairly thick coat of glue. On two of my samples the glue wasn’t thick enough for step #4…I reapplied glue and it fixed the problem, but required patience while waiting for the second coat to dry!

Step Three: Wait…and Wait…and Wait…

This is by far the easiest step, if you’re patient, and by far the hardest step if you aren’t patient. The drying time will vary, but it will be at least a few hours to get it nice and dry…remember you need a thick coat of glue! Patience is a work on something else in the meantime…and wait…and wait..and wait.

Step Four: Crack!

After the glue has dried hard and shiny, simply bend and CRACK! The topcoat. Don’t crumple the ticket, but rather crack it purposefully in several places.

Step Five: Re-Ink

If you like, the final step is to re-ink the ticket. I run my distress inking foam over the top of the ticket working the color into the cracks.

And here is a sample layout using my upcycled raffle tickets.

And the tally is:
Cost: $Free! (I had everything on hand…but a bottle of hard glue, if you don’t have it, is about $5)
Cats Annoyed: 2 (As usual, I had to shoo them out of the drying glue + 1 sad dog, who was scolded for trying to lick the drying glue…)
Time: Long! (The inking and cracking are quick, but plan on waiting a few hours to let the glue dry)
Skill Level: basic

So there it is vintage-y styled upcycled raffle tickets! Easy Peasy…and Cheap! Cheap!

Friday, May 14, 2010

Frugal Friday...and Other Uses for Bread Tabs

Hello is a re-posting of my Frugal Friday post over at The Everyday Scrapper...

A while ago I was surfing the net…checking out new products and I came across these cute tabs from Nikki Sivils website…bread(less) tabs…how cute are they!?!? She really has a cute line of products!

Well, at the time I was on a no spending kick and thought I would try using the tabs I had around the house…yes, really…around the house, on the floor, under the couch…as long as I could wrestle one or two away from the cats (they love batting them around on the tile floors and diving after them like they are wild prey!)

So I played around a bit and came up with these ideas…

Paper Covered: Super easy! Just apply glue to one side of the tab, adhere to paper, let dry and trim out!

Paint: Originally I used Distress Paint that has a crackle finish, but this didn’t work; the crackle shrunk the paint so much that it came right off! I re-tried painted it with a thick gloopy coat of plain acrylic, and it dried just fine.

Inked: I used Alcohol inks…pretty cool and super easy, just added a drop of each color and let them blend together.

Glittered: Just apply a thick coat of white glue, sprinkle on the glitter rather liberally and let dry. I sprayed the dried glittered tab with a matte sealer to keep the glitter flakes under control.

Here is a look at my samples (note the dark brown paint sample is still drying…but as of this morning it is dried with no signs of paint flaking!)

And here is a page layout I made, using the first sample I ever made, a paper covered tab…

(click on the picture for a bigger view....I know the tab is kinda hard to see here...)

So here’s the tally…

Cost: $2-ish for the bread (but that doesn’t count since we needed it anyway…right)

Cats Annoyed: 1 (I promise, Rooster, you can have the plastic tabs from the milk carton – ‘cause I can’t think of a scrapping use for them…yet)

Time: just a few minutes (anytime scrapping is well worth the effort)

Skill Level: basic

'Til next Friday...Cheap! Cheap!

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Exciting Morning!

Well, being a farmer isn't easy! We haven't even hit the hot part of the summer yet (not by a long shot) and I am already tired of the twice daily veggie garden watering! Every morning before work...and every evening before dinner!

But this morning I was welcomed to the garden with a lovely surprise!

After the deathly shock of planting my baby sprouts...and the disappointment of loosing all of the broccoli, most of the cucumbers, some of the tomatoes, a lot of the zucchini and so on...and so on...and so on...I planted more seeds last week. And this morning I found a nice, mostly tidy but not very straight, row of baby broccoli sprouting up through the ground! And even some new radishes! No sign of the extra watermelon, green onions, carrots or beans yet...but there are signs of hope! Yeah!



Monday, May 10, 2010

A Busy Weekend...And Other Joys!

Well, I had a pretty busy weekend...did some scrapping, some crafting and had a great Mother's Day with my mom! And I was even treated to a little rain shower on Sunday afternoon...yes, I love the rain!

I checked out my garden this morning, and it is showing some faint signs of life...and a bit of, well, death. I lost several fledgling veggies to shock, everything looks a bit sad...but I noticed some new leaves growing on the beans! Yeah!

New bean leaves!

Surviving Zucchini!

Growing radishes!

Dead cucumber...sigh!

I stopped at Lowes this Sunday to get some trellises for the beans (and when today's rain stops, I will install them) and picked up a few more veggies to fill in the beds, and to make me feel like I may actually get some harvest this year (I am already working on the 2010 Harvest mini album...I need veggie pictures!)

New veggies from, there is a couple of peppers, an eggplant (earmarked for Moussaka), a watermelon, a cantaloupe, and a basil...

New tomatoes (berry sweets and a Cherokee purple) from Solano Community College's plant sale...

On Saturday I finished some scrap layouts at an all day crop with Scrap Again...and I met a couple of really funny fellow much fun!

Jon's Birthday (although I think it needs some hand- doodling...I may work on this one some more later this week)

Easter 2010 (I wish the pictures were more in focus, but the kids don't understand why Auntie needs to take the same picture 5 times!)

Ms. Paperdolls and her Brodie (on a visit to the office a couple of weeks ago)...I hate to say this 'cause it sound arrogant, but I love how this turned out! Except, that it was framed when I took this picture of the layout...and you can see the front desk bell in the glass reflection... : (

I also finished a funny layout, but it is a surprise for a friend, so I can't divulge it here...just yet!

The birthday layout and the Easter layout are based on sketches from Scrapbooks Etc., and I have to vent that I am really disappointed that when I picked the sketches and printed my pictures to the sizes they indicated I didn't know the sketches were for layouts with a finished size of 8 1/2 X 11! So my pictures don't fill the 12X12 layouts very well...oh well...I guess I should stick to sketching my own layouts!

Friday (wow, I am really going back in time here...) I finished a cute mini album with pictures from a company event at the Oakland Zoo...the mini, a Jacob's Ladder, is based on a tutorial from Jana Eubank, that I found through the Everyday Scrapper's forum site...and by based, I mean exactly the same, except fort he overall size...and pictures, of course.

(oops! Picture missing...I will try to remember to take some tonight!)

Overall...a great weekend!

Monday, May 3, 2010

Fresh Vegtables...and Other Painful Gardening Stories

The Everyday Scrapper's NSD Blog Hop Post is here!

I finally got my raised bed vegetable garden started this weekend! Yeah! I can already taste the Pico De Gallo!

Actually, I planted the seeds for the garden back in March in an indoor Jiffy Greenhouse...and I watered faithfully, and gave them TLC...and they sprouted beautifully!

But then the rain just wouldn't stop...and building the raised beds just got put off week after week! The poor little sprouts were getting way too big for the greenhouse...

I finally got the garden site cleared a couple weekends ago and ordered the topsoil (3 cubic yards!) to be delivered Saturday it was 'go time' this weekend...

We built the beds, leveled and staked them and filled them with lovely fresh was a beautiful sight!

I planted all the little sprouts and labeled every row...and within an hour, everything had wilted!

So now I have two beautiful raised beds full of dying veggies! Sigh...I am going to give them a lot more TLC over the next couple of days...and see if they bounce back...if not, I will have to replace them with pre-started plants from the garden center...because I WILL HAVE FRESH PICO DE GALLO this year!