Tuesday, November 29, 2016

Felt plushies

Hello people,
Its Lekha with my project using the new Itsy Bitsy thin cut dies and felts.
Itsy Bitsy has a huge color palette of these felts for you to choose from.
(Few of the colors available at Itsy Bitsy)

It was my childhood hobby to make cute felt plushies. These are cute, little, fun tiny miny things to make on a weekend.
I have used the thin cut heart dies in different sizes to cut through felt. And these dies cut the felt like butter. 
Lets start making these....
I have used blanket stitch to sew together the bigger pieces and fill the plushie with cotton. Blanket stitch is the easiest when it comes to putting these little pieces together.
You can either choose a same color thread or shaded thread for a cool effect.

                                  Image result for blanket stitch steps
                                   (pic courtesy Google Images) 

For the base of each plushie cut 2 large heart pieces in yellow, pink, blue colors.

Notice the intricate scallop design in the smallest heart also. That is how fine these dies cut.


 For the blue felt plushie I have white crochet lace between the two pieces. The little bee sticker is turned into a resin embellishment.

These days there is an ongoing shaker mania, so here is a cute little felt shaker.
For this have cut the center using the second largest die in the set and used ohp sheet and filled granules & sequins. Have used blanket stitch to sew the edges.
The best part about shaker embellishments is you can pretty much put anything inside the belly. 

 Here are the little felt plushies...

 Hope you enjoyed these and would love to hear more from you.

Supplies Used:
thin cut dies
heart dies
pink crochet lace
white crochet lace
satin ribbon
ohp sheet

Saturday, November 26, 2016

Decoupage & Resin

Hi friends, Gopi here after a long time. Hope u guys are doing great...
These days I'm super addicted to decoupage. Decoupage not only helps to create beautiful home decor items but is also useful to re-cycle old items likes vases, furniture, crockery, etc.
Today I'll be showing you how to decoupage wooden articles and then sealing & giving a final touch to it using Craft Resin.

Let's get started...

I will be using Wooden decorable coasters & serving tray.


1. To start with, sand the coasters using a fine sand paper (readily available at any local paint store) to smooth the surface and edges.
2. Then give a generous coat of white gesso using a wash brush. Let this coat dry well (for about 4 hrs) and then give a second coat of white gesso, this time using the sponge daubers.

3. Next step is to select the Decoupage Napkins. I will be using Oriental Art.
4. To give a soothing contrast, I will paint the sides and the bottom of the coasters with baby pink gesso using sponge daubers. To make baby pink gesso, mix white gesso and Pearlised metallic paint - Carnation Pink. 

5. Next is to get the Decoupage napkin ready. Cut it slightly bigger than the required size from all sides. These napkins usually come as 2 ply or 3 ply. For decoupage we just need the top most printed ply. So once cut to size, peel off the unwanted ply.

6. Next apply a coat of Decoupage Glue - Matt to the top side of the coaster using a flat brush. Make sure the glue is applied well at the edges & corners.

7. While the glue is still wet carefully lay the napkin making sure no air bubbles are formed inside.

8. Now again apply a coat of decoupage glue, this time generously and carefully not tearing off the napkin. Let this dry overnight.

9. The next day once the glue is dry tear off the extra napkins at the edges using the sand paper. Now the coasters are ready for final touch of resin.

10. Using Silicon glue stick flat pearls(used from my stash) around the edge. Then wrap washi tape around the sides of the coaster. this will stop the resin from flowing down the edges.

11. While the silicon glue is drying lets prepare the Resin. I have used the fantastic transparent Craft Resin. The Itsy Bitsy's resin & hardener pack should be used in a 1:1 proportion.
I always prefer using disposable glasses to measure the resin & hardener and mix then in a disposable container. Use a popsicle to prepare the mixture. You can either prepare the mixture for 1 coaster at a time or all together. If all together the make sure you are quick enough to pour it.

12. Gently mix the resin & hardener using a Popsicle stick. This will prevent forming of air bubbles. Now using a disposable spoon start pouring the resin equally on all the coasters and spread it to the edges using the stick.

As visible here the coasters are placed elevated so any resin flowing out will not make coasters stick to the bottom.

Don't worry about any air bubbles formed while pouring the resin. They will eventually burst.
Let the resin cure overnight. 
The coasters are ready.

See the clarity...

Check the glaze...

Finally paint the edges with Carnation pink.

Serving Tray

Repeat step 1 & 2.

3. For the serving tray I will be using Vintage Roses decoupage napkin.
4. To give a soothing contrast, I will paint the sides (in & out) and the bottom of the the tray with baby pink gesso using sponge daubers. To make baby pink gesso, mix white gesso and Pearlised metallic paint - Carnation Pink.

To protect the bottom white from staining, cover the sides using 1 inch masking tape. Once the colour dries remove the tapes.

5. For the serving tray I'm using a different technique of decoupage. Apply a generous coat of Decoupage glue - Matt and let it dry. Once completely dry, apply second coat. Second coat will help cover up any spots missed in the first coat or glue. Again let it dry, this time overnight.

6. Now cut the exact size of the napkin unlike the coasters. Lay it within the serving tray and using wet sponge (just wet, not dripping water) gently press the napkin to the base. Decoupage glue being PVA glue reactivates when in contact with water and turns sticky. This will help the napkin to stick to the base. Let this complete dry

7. After the napkin is dry apply a generous coat of Decoupage glue and let it dry overnight. 
8. The next day, once the glue is dry start preparing the resin & hardener mixture same way as shown above. Pour it directly and by tilting the tray spread it across the base. Let it cure overnight.

Look at the glaze and clarity after the resin cures.

9. For the outer side I will be using Cake decorating stencil - Flourishes and modelling paste. I mixed Pearlised metallic paint - Mint to the modelling paste and using palette knife stenciled it on the tray. Let it air dry for around 4 hrs.

 To give a final touch paint the top edge & handle holes with Pearlised metallic paint - Mint.

The serving tray is ready...

Few things to keep in mind while working with Resin

1. Prefer to use disposable measuring cups, containers & spoons.
2. For every mix prepared use new containers.
3. Prefer to wear disposable gloves will working.
4. Always read the instructions and ratio before preparing. Every manufacturer has different Resin : Hardener Ration. For Itsy Bitsy Resin it is 1:1.
5. If you have resin on your hands, then wash it with Utensils Detergent Cake. Use the detergent generously.
6. While drying the resin make sure the article lays absolutely flat. A slight tilt with make the resin flow that side and dry tilt.
7. While drying the resin prefer to keep the article in a place dust free otherwise a layer of dust will lay over resin and kill the clarity.
8. Lastly by any chance if u find fumes & bubbles forming or resin getting too much heated, pls dont use it. Either the propertion is wrong or the product is too old.

The serving tray and coasters made can be cleaned using wet cloth but not under running water.

And the Final look...

I hope after this post you too will be addicted to Decoupage...

Happy Decoupaging!!!

Supplies Used:

7. Decoupage Napkin -  Vintage Roses
8. Decoupage Napkin - Oriental Art
16. Flat brush.

Thursday, November 24, 2016

Crafter in The Spotlight 25 - Itsy Bitsy

Hello Crafter friends, I am delighted to introduce & feature yet another Crafter this week ! This week’s crafter in the Spotlight for November 2016 is “NANDINI KARMARKAR”! 
A qualified Textile Engineer, this very talented crafter has even done costume designing for films & ad films! Way to go Nandini!

Primarily a card maker, Nandini also loves Origami, Crochet & Quilting! She is also passionate about teaching & has been teaching kids for several years. “Clean & Simple” she says is her style & I find her creations as lovely as her gorgeous smile! J

What really inspires Nandini, her tips for fellow crafters, her favourite quote, how would she contribute to crafting world if she had magical powers ? To know all these & to know more about her interesting journey & to see a step by step project of hers, please do visit our blog & leave some love for her:

Here are excerpts of my interview with Nandini :

Rashmi Closepet, MD, Itsy Bitsy : Tell us a bit about yourself & your background?
Nandini Karmarkar  : Hi! I am so thrilled and excited to be featured by Itsy Bitsy!

I come from a family of talented women who were always into all sorts of crafts. I never remember my mother, grandmother and aunts without some project or the other in hand. I learnt crochet from my grandmother. My mother conducted sewing classes for years and learnt stitching and embroidery from her.

I qualified as a Textile designer and ended up working as a costume designer for films and ad films. I quit work when my daughter was born and ended up doing a one year Art & Craft course. At the end of the course a group of us got together and started holding exhibitions of hand painted articles. But then I had my son and decided to stop commercial work for some time.

Though I am primarily a card maker, I also love origami, crochet and quilting. I also like teaching and have been holding workshops for kids for several years.

RC: How did you get into crafting?
NK: During the Art & Craft course I was introduced to quilling and that got me interested in paper crafts. I started making cards and money envelopes for sale during our exhibitions and had a tremendous response. I slowly started learning the card making techniques through blogs and YouTube and got hooked to card making.

RC: What is your favourite type of craft?
NK: I love all sorts of paper crafts. I also love quilting and sewing. Hopefully I will have more time to devote to those hobbies once my son is a little older.

RC: What are your favourite products at Itsy Bitsy?
NK: That is a tough question! There are so many that I like! I love the heat embossing powders, dies and stamps at Itsy Bitsy. I am also very keen on trying the new colour sprays.

RC: If you had magic powers, how would you contribute to the Crafting world?
NK: If I had magic powers I would make craft supplies accessible to all! The more you craft, more supplies will be available. So everyone will have an incentive to craft more!

RC: Your prized possession in your craft stash from Itsy Bitsy?
NK: It has to be my Big Shot! I bought it several years ago and use it in almost all my projects. I am also excited about the new dies that Itsy Bitsy has come out with.

RC: How would you describe your style of crafting?
NK: My style of crafting is very clean and simple. I am not comfortable with too many layers or embellishments. Other that sequins and pearls I rarely add much to my work.

RC: How do you organize your time for crafting?
NK: I believe that if you really love something, you will find the time to do it. That being said, I do find it tough to find large stretches of time for crafting. I normally work when my kids are in school. We are a no television family. So that saves me a chunk of time.

RC: Tips for people who want to craft
NK: I would say – just start! Many people feel that they need loads of stuff before they can start. That is not true. You can start with the most basic supplies and then build your stash over time.  Do invest in good quality craft tools though. Because they will last you a very long time. For card making invest in a good cutter, die cutting machine and heat embossing tools.

RC: Your all -time favourite quote?
NK: My all-time favourite quote is by the famous American poet, writer and civil rights activist Maya Angelou – You can’t use up creativity. The more you use, the more you have.

Here is a gorgeous project by Nandini & step by step description :

I started with a piece of watercolor paper, some inks and the new stamp set from Itsy Bitsy called Dream.

I stamped one of the blooms with orange ink. To create a mask, I doubled up some paper tape, stamped the bloom and then cut it out with my scissors.

I stamped the leaves with light green ink first, masked them and then stamped with dark green ink.

I then stamped another bloom with yellow ink and added pale green leaves.

I felt that the spaces looked empty. So I added some dots with pale brown ink.

Once my stamped panel was ready, I cut it with rectangular dies to get a frame. The idea was to create two cards from a single panel.

This is what I ended up with

I created the sentiment panel by die cutting a scrap of watercolor paper. Since I didn’t have the matching orange embossing powder, I stamped with the orange ink and immediately covered it with clear embossing powder. I then mounted the frame and the sentiment panel on some foam tape.

As a finishing touch I stamped the yellow bloom and flowers on the sentiment panel.

For the second card I used a green card base and a sentiment cut out of some metallic gold paper.

I mounted the stamped panel on some foam tape and added the sentiment.

Here are the final cards

Here are a couple of Nandini's other awesome creations:

Many congrats Nandini for being the CRAFTER IN THE SPOTLIGHT – ITSY BITSY

You will receive Rs.500/- Itsy Bitsy gift voucher :-) :-) & a Crafter in the Spotlight badge, which can be proudly displayed on the side bar of your blog and other platforms. Looking forward to many more creations, Happy Crafting!