Sunday, January 17, 2010

Valentine Shadowbox


I found this tiny shadowbox at the thrift store. It's a mass-produced blue and mauve number from the '80, judging by the colors. I took it home to use as the base for my first-ever try at shadow boxes. I figured I would start out small. (The dime will give you a size reference...)


I used
an old sheet of Valentine scrapbook paper and some small doilies, found a figural button and some ribbon, added some glitter and I was done. The most time consuming part was figuring out the placement of the items.
But I like how it turned out and maybe next time I will try for something a little bigger!
Have fun making your own,

Sunday, January 10, 2010

How to paint a Chandelier

Here is an old chandelier that someone gave me last month. I wasn't sure what I was going to do with it but I knew, at the least, it needed a paint job.

First thing was to remove the glass parts (remember in what order you unscrewed them!) and cover the "candlesticks". I usually cover them with newspaper and tape but, while rummaging through the junk-drawer I found some balloons ("Eureka! I'm a genius" I slipped them over the candlesticks. (The paint-covered balloons flaked all over the project when I went to remove them. Ugh. It made for extra clean-up work! So much for genius. I recommend masking tape and newspaper.)

Other styles of chandeliers will need other parts removed or masked and still others will require extra painting on wires or chains.

Sand any rust spots.

To spray paint, I like to put my project in a box. It contains the paint better and the paint has a "second chance" to land on the project while it's flying around in there. The box pictured is less than perfect size for this project. The chandelier should not really be sticking out of the box anywhere...but it's the only box I had on hand...

I used this Krylon Indoor/Outdoor flat. I think it worked fine. It's the first time I've used this brand and I liked it because it dried quickly, allowing for fast application of more coats. My favorite brand is Zinsser Stain Blocker. It will cover ANYTHING!
Spray your first coat. Let dry. Reposition project. Spray again. Repeat until you are happy with the coverage.

This chandelier came naked...that is...without any crystals. So, being that I had all my Christmas decorations out, I trimmed it with mini balls and pearl garland. I have used this painting method on metal, brass, wire and wood chandeliers. It's simple and for the cost of a $4 can of spraypaint (don't use the $1.99 Walmart brand...too thin), you can have a fresh new look on any light fixture. Try it!

Thursday, January 7, 2010

How to make your own Thin Mint Cookies

How to make your own Thin Mint Cookies!

This was the view out my front porch this morning so it seemed like a good day to stay inside and make cookies....

Have you ever made your own Girl Scout-style Thin Mints?

It's very simple and they taste better than the "real thing", plus I didn't even have to turn on the oven.

All you need is meltable Dark MINT Chocolate wafers and ritz-style crackers. Melt the chocolate in a double-boiler or two pots, one sitting in the boiling water of the other (that's what I do because I don't own a double boiler...)

When the chocolate is melted, dip crackers in, one at a time and coat both side with chocolate. (Sorry about the practically empty pot in this picture. I was finished before I remembered to take the photos!) Tap off the excess chocolate and place cookie on waxed paper. I do about 10 then take my fork and press a criss-cross shape on them while they are still "wet".

If you can't find the mint flavored chocolate wafers, you can use regular dark chocolate wafers and just add a tad of peppermint extract to the melted chocolate.

This recipe is super easy but time consuming since you have to make them one at a time. I suggest using a fork to dip and flip the crackers as a spoon will gather too much chocolate when you go to place the cookie on the paper. We like to store the finished cookies in the freezer for that extra minty "cold-snap" when you bite into one! Have fun!