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Thursday, August 24, 2017

Tie up Your Cre8time with a BOW... DecoFun™ Bow Maker Challenge with Designer Crafts Connection

Hello friends! Today I am part of a special bloghop with the Designer Crafts Connection as we explore all the fun ways to decorate with ribbons and BOWs. Today's challenge is taking us over the pond with DecoFun™ Bow Maker - the original British bowmaker. Learn in minutes... fun for a lifetime!

I don't know about you, but I use bows on just about anything and everything... cards, gift boxes or baskets, wreaths - you name it! Bows are the finishing touch and how wonderful is it to have a tool to make bows quick and easy out of any color or size ribbon to match ANY occasion. I love making my paper ornaments, so today I'm going to share how I complete one of my handmade creations and get a jumpstart on my handmade holiday giftwrapping too!

No more fussing about trying to tie a perfect bow... the DecoFun™ Bow Maker makes bowmaking so easy... and FUN! This easy bow making tool is better than a bow-making machine and I figured out that I can also use it to make tassels, too. I was provided with the DecoFun™ Bow Maker Basic Kit and an assortment of six lovely ribbons to make bows with.

I started by finishing a folded paper ornament that I started a while back. I followed a pattern from "The Origami Handbook" by Rick Beech. When I made the smaller version I knew exactly what I wanted to do with this style. I want to make an oversize version where I can dangle a vintage ornament inside. This is made from 12 folded segments  a metallic green cardstock and NO-GLUE. 

With the base shape complete and ornament installed from center with a thin piece of wire fed down from top... I'm ready to start embellishing!

I start winding the 1 1/2" red/white stripe wired ribbon around the DecoFun™ Bow Maker. Visit the DecoFun™ Bow Maker YouTube Channel for ideas.

Wrap ribbon through the prongs following the simple directions in sort of a figure 8 fashion until I use all of the ribbon on spool. Just three steps and you are done!

I use a provided silver twist tie wire to wrap around center and secure. There is even a little recessed area in the center where you can slide it right underneath the ribbon. Remove ribbon bundle from tool.

I set this aside to make another layer with other colors.

I layered two ribbons into the DecoFun™ Bow Maker -- a 5/8" sparkle green satin layered upon a 1 1/2" red wired satin ribbon. Then I gently opened up the prior ribbon bundle and layered it at the back and twisted them altogether. I trimmed the loose ends and pulled all the sections apart to form a puffy bow. I will fluff it more when I place it atop of my ornament.

Now to make the tassel! I remove the supports and move out the prongs to the match the desired length of my tassel. I just eyeball how long I think the tassel should be in relation to the size/scale of my ornament.

I wrapped the thread around and around the prongs, using the entire skein. Before removing, I fed a reserved strand to tie off a hanger at the top of the tassel and added a few coordinating beads from my stash.

To complete the tassel, I took another reserved thread to tie off the "puff" on the top of my tassel. I wrap the thread around both sides of the wrapped thread about 1/2" from the side I tied the beaded hanger. I tied a tight knot, then wrapped thread around several times, then tied knot. I gently slid the thread off the prongs and trimmed the bottom. After straightening all threads and giving a little trim my tassel is complete!

I fed the thread of the tassel up through a tiny hole made in the bottom point of the ornament, secured within the folds with a small piece of tape.  

The finishing touch is to tie the bow on top with the wire I attached to suspend the vintage ornament, then give a final fluffing. WOW!!! Because of the large size of this ornament and I don't want to disturb my beautiful bow, I'm using clear fishing line suspended through the middle of the ornament so that it hangs level.

A diamond full of holiday cheer!

What a statement piece this is!! I have a corner in my living room where I can hang a cluster of these, I'll just need to install a few ceiling hooks when the holidays arrive. Even paired with another lantern from a sheet of folded 12x12 patterned cardstock looks so lovely... and the puffy bow on top makes complete.

CLICK HERE to pop on over to Designer Crafts Connection for more ideas and inspiration using the DecoFun™ Bow Maker... fun for any and all occasions!


Thanks for dropping by and I would love to hear how you embellish with ribbons and bows! :) Sb

** This is a sponsored post. The Ribbon Place has provided the DecoFun Bow Maker and ribbons for use in this project in exchange for my creative ideas, views and opinions. My ideas and opinions are my own.

Tuesday, August 22, 2017

#Cre8time + Coloring = DIY Mini Composition Journals

I love coloring and I love having notebooks everywhere to jot down Cre8time ideas as they come to me. I have loads of notebooks and mini journals around... many that can certainly use an artsy touch. I've transformed these plain notebooks into something beautiful with a handmade touch! With a few supplies and a little time spent coloring, I have a beautifully colored mini journal and a second that I can be colored on the go. 

Enjoy the creative relaxation of coloring and turn your finished coloring pages into FUN-ctional mini composition journals! 

First select a design from a coloring book of your choice. My particular book is by Leisure Arts and it has perforations in the center for easy tear out. I removed a page and colored in with colored pencils - filling in the patterns and building up layers of color. This is the fun part! I took my time and enjoyed the relaxation of the coloring process. I only colored half of the sheet and left the other half of sheet uncolored.

I take a few minutes to prepare the surface of the store-bought mini composition books. With back-to-school time here, this is a great time to stock up on these.

I gently sand the glossy surface on the front and back covers and wipe away dust with a cloth. Measure size of cover then trim a double-sided adhesive sheet slightly larger than needed using paper trimmer {this step can be skipped if you'd rather use a glue stick - I've done both ways}. I normally use a gluestick, but I happened to have some adhesive sheets on hand {they don't last long in my crafty cave}.

Follow by trimming the colored Kaleidoscope coloring sheet into sections to same size as adhesive sheets. The books I used are approx. 3 1/2" x 4 1/2" so I trimmed everything about 1/8" larger. 

From just one coloring sheet I can cover two (2) mini journals. I will cover one using the top section of the page that is colored; and use the remaining uncolored half for another. I will need four (4) sections of adhesive sheets to cover both books.

Color spine of each book using a Permapaque marker - this is a permanent marker with matte, opaque color. It has nice coverage and dries fast. When ink is dry, remove backing and adhere adhesive sheets to front and back of each book, trimming overlap with scissors.

Burnish adhesive sheets to ensure secure adhesion and to remove air bubbles. Remove backing and place trimmed sections of coloring sheet to front and back covers of book. I like to do the application in two steps by adding adhesive to book, then colored sheet after so that I can be more precise in my placement. Backtrim edges as in previous step. Use Permapaque pen to edge covers and color outside edge of pages. 

*Optional: Add decorative washi tape trim or ribbon to spine edge {I added a thin diamond patterned washi tape to the uncolored book version}.

My mini composition books are complete. They are so cute!! I will add one extra step for the book covered with my hand-colored page. 

I painted on a layer of Mod Podge Outdoor for added durability and to protect the surface coloring from smearing or rubbing off. Make sure to reserve a few days to let the "outdoor" Mod Podge dry completely before using. You'll be able to tell when it's fully dry as it will no longer feel tacky to the touch.

This project can even be bundled together and make a great gift to pass on the Cre8time enjoyment of coloring. Stack a coloring book, colored pencils and both colored and uncolored books and tie with a organza ribbon... and add a nice pen to complete this wonderful gift with handmade flair.

With all the themes and patterns of coloring books available you can customize a gift for anyone... anytime of the year.

What will you embellish
with coloring sheets?

I would love to hear what you create with your hand-colored pages. Thanks for visiting! :) Sb

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Materials Used:
  • Tonic Studios Paper Trimmer
  • Tonic Studios 5" Mini Snips Scissors
  • Mini Blank Composition Journals
  • Leisure Arts "Art of Coloring - Kaleidoscopes"
  • Leisure Arts Colored Pencils - 24 colors
  • Plaid Mod Podge Outdoor
  • Scrapbook Adhesives Permanent 4x6 Adhesive Sheets
  • Sakura Permaopaque Blue Pigment Marker
  • Sakura Micron Archival Pen
  • Pencil
  • 1/8" diamond washi tape
  • Paintbrush
  • Ruler
  • Square of sandpaper
  • Organza Ribbon
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