I have an infatuation with matchboxes, especially when they are repurposed into something else, like a little cute box for packaging my handmade earrings.
I had some glitter, some paint (yes, oil-paint for furniture), acrylic paint, white glue, and a stamp. And this is what I came up with.
The oil-based paint actually makes the matchboxes much more sturdier than they are. The stamped bird is made with foam. This stamped side of the matchboxes is actually painted with white acrylic, so that the ink would stick.
Here are some ideas for embellishing matchboxes. Some are shabby chic, some are not… but they’re all so beautiful.
Things to use upcycled matchboxes for:
- Packaging small jewelry items, like earrings and pins, broaches, and a strand of pearls – and using them in craft shows, for instance.
- Organizing tiny office supplies – like clips, tacks, push-pins, rubber bands, etc
- Stationary: You can put a stack of sticky notes (Post-it notes) on top of the matchbox and place a tiny pen in the “drawer” to make a quick notebook
- Gifts: Wrapping a cute little gift (of candy, maybe) for a loved one
- Miniatures: Making miniature drawers for small toy houses
One can come up with as many ideas as one can with this little drawer-shaped box. The possibilities are endless…
If you have any matchbox ideas or projects, please do share them. I created a Pinterest board for them, and I’m always on the lookout for cute little matchbox ideas…
In the spirit of continuing the theme of pretty organizing, I noticed that when I place things in beautiful containers and storage solutions, they get an instant promotion around the craft room: From being a merely functional “thing” to a piece of “love” that you want to place in a prime location.
In this DIY, I basically upgraded 3 magazine files by attempting a wall-paper look. This is inspired by the lovely bird magazine files that are at the bottom of this post, and which I mentioned previously.
This is how these poor black files got their promotion up into a much nicer shelf at my workspace. The files are a bit unsteady since they are old, and I did stack up more magazines than they could hold, so they are puffy at the edges.
I had a difficult time deciding whether to decoupage the files or paint them. I had some nice damask wall-paper, but it looked too patterned, too well-finished for the look I was looking for.
So I decided to use:
- Acrylic paint (white, pink, green)
- Foam stamp (Motif: Grapes)
- I started by free-handing the shape of a pink bird, as if perched on a branch. I found an illustration of a bird and placed it in-front of me to help me keep the proportions right while I painted. I decided to paint the bird on two magazine files (I just had to hold them real tight as I sketched the shape). This is so that the final image would give the impression of a whole big painting that was cut into 3 parts (just like the original wall-paper idea was).
- I stamped the grapes around the bird arbitrarily after dabbing acrylic colors on the foam stamp (pink on the grapes, green on the leaves), but the lines were too thin, so I decided to take advantage of this and add a vintage-y touch by dabbing paint here and there, on the leaves, around the grapes themselves, and around the bird.
- I touched up some areas with light pink or white to hide mistakes.
Yes, here it is… the beautiful inspiration that got me thinkin’ about changing the look of my files.
The design of the files in the above pic is by British stylist Marie Nichols, whose blog is so inspiring.
The other day I spotted this photo tutorial for making a wax stamp. I thought that maybe I can make one for paper… and even fabric. So here is my version of a burnt-wood stamp using soldering gun and a few other materials.
- A piece of wood
- Soldering gun
- Craft foam sheet
- Sponge brayer
- Acrylic colors
- A plastic plate for the acrylic paint
Trace the stamp text or image with a pencil on the piece of wood (make sure it’s in reverse). Heat your soldering gun and start burning the wood using little dots, then connect them as the gin gets hotter. Apply some acrylic paint to the plastic plate and roll the brayer with the paint until it gets covered evenly. Apply the paint even over your wooden stamp.
Place a piece of foam under the paper you intend to stamp, so that you get all the nooks of the stamp; this isn’t a rubber stamp, so it won’t leave a good print if you use it on a hard surface.
That’s it! I love the end result. It’s not clean and shiny, but it’s got lots of character. I’ve used my stamp to label some of my craft work. I basically stamp the signature on paper, cut it to size then mod-podge it to the back of my craft project to label it. I haven’t tried this on fabric yet, but I think applying the right amount of paint and using foam under the fabric might get me good results.
Happy stampin’ everyone :)
I just found this video over at Scissors Paper Wok (S.P.W). I love this tutorial for making your own paper pencils, and I thought I’d share it with you.
I’ve seen other tutorials where you wrap an ordinary wooden pencil with paper using white glue as adhesive, but this one is different. You’re actually wrapping the inside lead (the writing part of the pencil, also known as Rsas in my dialect) with paper and creating an all-paper pencil.
How to Make Paper Pencils (tutorial) - Via S.P.W
And if you find the passion in you to create more paper pencils, here is a great idea for you:
Use layers of different colored paper to create a layered effect every time you sharpened your parer pencil!
Use layers of different colored paper - Via S.P.W