DIY Plexiglass Painting

 

My infamously non-functioning fireplace felt like it needed a little pizzazz after the holiday decor came down last month. I’ve left a strand of battery-powered mercury lights up for the rest of winter and a dozen prayer candles in the firebox, but it didn’t feel like enough. So then I relocated a plant (that I brought all the way home as a carry-on from Palm Springs!) to the hearth and that helped a little bit more. But then whole time I knew what would really perk it up would be art.

 

 

Plexiglass is one of my favorite surfaces to paint on, a little unusual I know. But you can’t beat the way the paint effortlessly glides around the surface and I love the way it feels so light, whether placed on the floor or hung on the wall with a large bulldog clamp.

 

 

Supplies

plexiglass (this piece measures 16 x 20″)
craft paint
palette or paper plate
large round brush
• water jar

 

 

I flipped through a few of my Pinterest boards for inspiration, and settled on an asymmetrical design using three colors – pale pink, soft grey, and olive green. After peeling off the protective film all plexiglass should have, I began in the southwest corner with the pink and worked my way up and out, making curved swoops with my brush and leaving plenty of space in between. Sort of spastic motions really. After the pink dried I went back in with the grey and did the same, filling in about half of the gaps and when that dried I filled in the rest with the green.

 

 

As always with our DIY projects, this is just a loose idea of what you could do with these materials. I love creating abstract art because it helps me get my emotions out, but maybe you like landscapes or portraits. Go with it.

(If you missed January’s project, check it out here.)

 

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Feel Good Valentine’s Day Printables

 

This month we partnered again with Vivian Kvitka, aka The Good Viv, to bring you two printable valentines to spread the love. The world needs as much as it can get, and a sweet sentiment or piece of mail (that’s not a bill) has the ability to make people genuinely smile! These print two to a page and can be mailed like a postcard – just write on the back, address, and add stamp – or handed out in person. I think the thing I love most is neither is actually Valentine’s Day specific, they’re all about love and support so print out a bunch and share the good feels!

Download Heart + Might here

Download I Think You Are Magic here

 

 

 

 

 

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Decked Out for Valentine’s Day

LOVE IS LOVE! Valentine’s Day is a favorite of mine, even though I’m almost always single when it rolls around. To me the day is about love in all its many forms and any reason to celebrate it is a good one, especially lately. Check out these printables, recipes, accessories, and more for a super decked out February 14th!

 

ROW 1: Printable Valentine Stickers // Printable Hot Tea Pyramids   ROW 2: Stripe Shirt with Heart Collar // Sugar Cookie Bars // The Love Spell Cocktail   ROW 3: Valentine’s Day Almond Cake // Valentine’s Day Treat Bags // Woman of Many Hearts Shades   ROW 4: Printable Tags for Valentine’s Day // Marbled Raspberry Dark Chocolate Valentine’s Day Bark // Red and Spotted D’orsay Flat

 

ROW 1: Acrylic Heart Frame // All Around Giant Heart Towel // Always and Forever Bunting   ROW 2: Arrow Cocktail Stirrers // Brass Heart Box // Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Valentine’s Hearts   ROW 3: Chocolate Pots de Crème // Coffee Lover Mug // Conversation Heart Ice Cream   ROW 4: Heart Necklace // DIY Hugs & Kisses Garland // DIY Pompom Heart Wreath

 

ROW 1: Rose Painted Valentine Cake // DIY Rose Petal Bath Salts // DIY Valentine Bouquet Wraps + Printable Love Quotes   ROW 2: DIY Valentine Heart Magnets // DIY Valentine’s Day Wall Hangings // Gold Heart Earrings   ROW 3: Graffiti Painted Clutch // Heart Print Sweatshirt // Heart Shaped Double Wall Glass Mug   ROW 4: Heart-Shaped Rose Tart // Jute Heart Rug // Love Potion #9 Martini

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DIY Abstract Embroidery Hoop Art

 

Welcome to our second new series of 2017! After nearly ten years of sharing the creativity of others, I thought it was high time we started creating more ourselves. These projects are just as much for me as they are for you. Working in a creative industry tends to have the opposite effect of what you might expect, and my own personal art has taken a backseat. I aim to change that starting with this post.

So, what can you expect? A loosely guided art project once a month that leaves plenty of room to explore and make your own. I’ll share my own take on it and leave you to the rest with a list of supplies and your own hands.

 

 

 

Supplies
• embroidery hoop(s)
• embroidery fabric
• acrylic paints
• palette knife (a disposable plastic knife will do in a pinch)
• acrylic paint brush
• jar with water for rinsing
• paper towels
• paint palette (or paper plate)
• scissors

 

 

I began by finding two color palettes I liked that could be easily mixed and matched – mainly blues, corals, goldenrod, and grey. I also knew that I wanted my three hoops to be related in style to look cohesive when hung together, and I accomplished that in two ways. First I made sure to use colors from the first two pieces together in the third, and second I made each painting slightly more organized in style than the previous. (Can you tell the order?)

 

 

Begin by disassembling the embroidery hoop and stretching the embroidery fabric over the inner hoop before pulling the fabric taut and replacing and tightening the outer hoop. I waited until the end of the project to trim off excess fabric from the back, but you could do that now as well.

Next you’ll want to pick up that paint brush and paint the entire “canvas” background however you see fit, making sure to paint over the top edge of the embroidery hoop as well. (Sidenote: this is the only time I used a brush throughout)

 

 

After the background is dry it’s time to put that palette knife to work. Squeeze each of your chosen paint colors onto your palette, and if you’re mixing a new color remember that it’s always better to mix too much than too little because it’ll be nearly impossible to recreate that color again. Load up the underside of the knife with a dollop of paint and use it as though you’re icing a cake. I didn’t bother waiting for colors to dry in between, just used a gentle hand to avoid mixing. The paint should be thick enough on the fabric that you can see definition, no need to refrain.

 

 

Once finished I let these guys hang out for a solid 24-hours to dry. Those thick layers of paint will take at least that long to set up fully. I then used some small finishing nails to hang them on the wall, just under each hoop closure.

I hope you love this new series and will join me in bringing more creativity into your life! And if you complete any of the projects I’d love to see – just tag @designcrush.

 

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An Easy Holiday DIY for You + Your Cat

 

If you share your home with a cat (or three) they’re in the Christmas tree half of the time it seems. I took a cue from them and created this two-for-one DIY project inspired by their antics and Fancy Feast Feastivitieshandmade gift guide for cat lovers.

Fancy Feast Feastivities is a celebration of the ultimate ways to delight cats and cat lovers during the holidays. This year’s theme is all about inspired holiday entertaining, so you’ll find the gift guide contains plenty of gifts for the cat-loving hostess in your life. The creativity of the makers involved pushed me to come up with something I knew my cats would love playing with, rather than buying something they’d probably bat around for five minutes and never look at again (like real kids!).

 

 

Your cat can play to their heart’s content with their mega glitter pom pom toy, while just the addition of ribbon turns it into a sparkly decoration that can bring a festive touch to a doorknob or tree branch in your home. I plan on making a few more of the smaller ones to add to the outside of gift boxes as well because they’re just so happy looking!

 

 

Supplies
• glue gun and glue sticks
2-inch styrofoam ball (for the cat toy)
• 3-inch styrofoam ball (for the decoration)
• various sizes of glitter pom poms
• ribbon
• catnip

 

 

After heating up your glue gun, start by distributing the largest of the pom poms evenly over the ball’s surface and gluing down. Work progressively through the other sizes (I used three different ones), using the smallest pom poms to fill in any leftover spaces. If you’re working on the larger decoration, make sure to leave a small space to attach a ribbon for hanging with the hot glue as well. Allow to cool for five minutes before placing in a closed ziploc bag with catnip for a few hours. Your own ornament should be ready to hang after those five minutes as well.

 

 

My cat, Peanut, especially loved this toy. He batted it around the room for at least ten minutes, picking it up in his mouth and giving a good shake before putting it back on the floor and running around the room like crazy again. I may need to make two more for the other cats! And if you have any of the larger pom poms leftover I guarantee your felines will go crazy for those on their own as well.

This post sponsored by Fancy Feast Feastivities. All words and opinions are my own, as always. Thank you for supporting the brands that help Design Crush create fresh content!

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DIY Wooden Modern Bell Ornaments

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This holiday I’ve opted to keep things minimal, and from what I’ve seen online a lot of you are choosing to do the same. The living room has a simple live potted tree that’s about four feet tall, decorated with a handful of ornaments and lights. The rest of the first floor has a few decorations here and there – a poinsettia, a few wreaths, not too much. And my office has this little silver tree that’s followed me from my last design firm job over five years ago. Since I spend a good part of my days here it only makes sense for it to feel festive as I dig through my inbox and comb the internet.

 

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Inspired by the colors in my workspace and traditional wooden ornaments I came up with these modern bells. Covered in bright paint and fresh patterns, they’re a great match for the sparkle of the tiny tree.

Materials
• wooden cones with pre-drilled holes
• wooden balls with pre-drilled holes
• craft paints
• paintbrushes in various sizes
• jute twine

 

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This little project took me about an hour and was a great respite from what’s proving to be a hectic month. I sat down with a roll of paper towels and a cup full of water for cleaning my brushes and got to work with Christmas music playing in the background.

 

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Once all of my cones and balls were painted, patterned, and dry I cut roughly 14-inch lengths of jute twine. I doubled each up in length and tied off a loop about 1 1/2-inches long, then pushed the loose ends through the cone and ball, tying them off once pulled through with a knot or two. If the jute got hung up I just used a wood skewer to help it through.

And tada! An instantly festive artful tree.

 

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20 Ornaments to Buy or DIY

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1/ Celestial Iridescent Glass Ornament   2/ Leather Stag Ornament   3/ DIY Beaded Gift Toppers/Ornaments   4/ DIY Clay Pot Ornament   5/ DIY Glitter Dust Filled Ornament

 

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6/ Clear Glass Bubble Ornaments   7/ Crackled Globe Ornament   8/ DIY Marbled Tree Ornaments   9/ DIY Metallic Wooden Ball Ornaments   10/ DIY Pinanta Ornaments

 

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11/ Crystal Quartz Ornaments   12/ Gliding Swan Ornament   13/ DIY Recycled Sweater Ornament   14/ DIY Snowflake Pattern Ornament   15/ DIY Color Block Wood Ornaments

 

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16/ Handblown Metallic Glass Globe Ornament   17/ Monogram Glitter Ornament   18/ Porcelain Stamped Tree Ornaments   19/ Quadrilateral Glass Ornaments   20/ DIY Fabric Covered Tree Ornaments

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