Upcycled glass bottle SNOW FOLK

Lots of assorted collected bottles.  Time for a project to use them!


I decided to make them into ‘snow folk’.

P1230906Assorted styrofoam balls, covered with a layer of paper because glitter does not stick to styro very well.  I painted on some ‘pink cheeks’ and covered the balls with white glitter.

P1230911I filled the wider mouth bottles with artificial snow.


For the bottles with really small holes that the snow wouldn’t fit into, I used white sand mixed with a little glitter for sparkle!


A batch of ‘carrot noses’; toothpicks cut in half and painted orange.

P1230919Poked a hole with a nail for the nose in the middle of the face then glued the glittered heads to the show filled bottles with tacky glue.

P1230920Put a dot of tacky glue into the nose hole and push the nose in place.


Time for eyes!

P1230923I used little black upholstery tacks for the eyes.  Poke a tiny hole with the same nail used for the noses, squirt in a dot of glue, the push the tacks in.

P1230926And here they all are!

P1230928I decided to make them ‘party hats’ out of old sheet music.  Cut circles into thirds and glue.  (circle size varies, as do the sizes of the styro balls used for the heads).  I made little ‘pom-poms’ for the tip of the hats.


The pom-poms are made from 1/4 of a chenille stem, rolled into a ball with just enough of the stem left to stick into the top of the hat.  (snip off the tip of the hat, add a dot of glue and push the pom-pom in)

P1230929Then I added a bit more glue from the underside to be sure the pom-poms were nice and secure.  Let the glue dry for 15 minutes or so, with the hats upside down.

P1230930 Put a generous line of glue around the inside rim of the hat and plop it on his head.  Press it down after a few minutes if it starts to loosen.

P1230936For the trim for the hats I used a while gold chenille stem.  Sized it to the hat that is already on the head, and twist the ends to make a circle.  Wrap the rest of the end around your circle.


Put a line of glue around the outside rim of the hat and slide the gold rim into place.


 Hold it in place for a few seconds to be sure it doesn’t slide up.

P1230940Lots of snow folk in hats!

P1230935I used a couple of gold chenille stems to wrap around the neck; embellished with a rusty jingle bell.

P1230937The smaller bottles just needed one chenille stem around the neck.

P1230938And here they all are!

Burlap wreaths

I LOVE the ‘loose & fluffy’ look of burlap wreaths!P1230233I’ve been ‘intending’ to make one ever since they first started popping up a few years ago.  And I’ve accumulated all the supplies, over the years, to do so!

P1230266I even ‘did the research’ (looking on Pinterest!) for tutorials.  And THAT is as far as I got before discouragement set in and my supplies were left to gather yet another layer of dust.

P1230238Do you love/hate Pinterest as much as I do??  Love all the ideas and inspiration, but HATE all the DIFFERENT tutorials for making the same thing!  aaaaarghhhh!!!

In my burlap research I found tutorials that said to use pipe cleaners, to attach your burlap to your wreath form.  Another said to use zip ties.  Another wire.  Even one that said to use SCOTCH TAPE?!?!?  So, after all that ‘research’ and the subsequent complete confusion, I just went with what ‘sounded’ most logical to me.  Pipe cleaners, cut into 1/4’s,  Wire cuts up your hands too much and scotch tape, just NO!

P1230240So, this is hoe my first attempt turned out.  And even with having pre-cut all my pipe cleaners to length, it took me a good TWO hours to complete this baby.  And I really was not totally happy with it.  I wanted more ‘fluffed out’ areas. All the folds were just laying too FLAT.

P1230234I tried ‘hand fluffing’ them, but they just flattened right back out.  So I grabbed a roll of brown package wrapping paper and made some ‘wads’ of it and stuffed them into various places.  You can see a few of them in the above close-up photo.   THAT is how I imagined it would look!

P1230235And it breaks up the folds a bit, and looks more ‘random’ to me.  So I waded up a bunch more paper balls.

P1230239Here you can see a few more of the places where I added the paper.  But you really don’t notice it if you don’t know it’s there.  I think perhaps my ‘problem’ with not being able to ‘fluff my folds’ without adding something is that the burlap I used was only 5″ wide.  Wider burlap, folded in half, would probably fluff better.

SO, after I made that first one, I ventured back to Pinterest to look over some more tutorials to see if there was a FASTER way to make them.  Can’t make any money selling them if it’s gonna take me over TWO hours to make one!!

Found a Pin that led me to a you-tube video touting that you could make a burlap wreath in 20 minutes.  TWENTY minutes???  Seriously?  I HAD to watch it.  It’s only a 2 minute video, so worth the time to watch.  Here’s the link:


Interesting, and most definitely a FASTER way to make a burlap wreath, but personally, I would NEVER make on using that method. Not even just to keep for myself.  Why?  One snag and your entire wreath will come apart!  There is nothing ATTACHING the burlap to the wreath form.  No thank you.  I’ll stick with my more labor intensive, but PERMANENT method; and only make a very FEW of them.

P1230305This is the back of the one with the gold bells.

P1230304Each ‘loop’ of burlap is secured to the wreath form with a cut piece of twisted pipe cleaner.

P1230265This is my second one’ on which I used some printed burlap ribbon interspersed.  The printed ribbon was wired and fluffed out nicely.  I did NOT add the brown paper to fluff out the rest of this wreath . .  .yet.

P1230268Still pondering whether or not I need to.  I used MORE burlap on this one, so it’s fuller, and I guess with the printed ribbon ‘breaking it up’, the layers of burlap with no fluff don’t bother me as much.


Which do you prefer?  The larger ‘fluffs’ or the one with more ‘folds’?


I really don’t have a ‘favorite’.  Each looks good to me in its own way.

P1230315I decided to embellish the first one with a gold bow and a gold glitter “Noel” ornament.   I just ‘hung’ the Noel over one of the burlap loops, and did NOT permanently attach it.  That way it can easily be removed, and the wreath can still be used beyond the Christmas season.


Forgot to show you what kind of ‘form’ I used for these.

P1230314I bought this batch of rusty metal wreath forms at a garage sale a long time ago.  To prevent the rust from ‘shedding’ onto the wreath, I spray painted them with clear spray.  And I sprayed one white for an up[coming project.

P1230341AFTER I made those two burlap wreaths, I found these wire wreath forms at DOLLAR TREE!  These are the kind used in the video, twist and tuck method, and should make for a fuller wreath.  I haven’t used them yet, and in fact, I still have several of the rusty ones left.  But I did buy a few of the Dollar Tree ones because I KNOW that if I don’t buy it when I see it . . .they’ll be gone when I DO need them!

P1230976This one has gone to my booth at Stars.  Still trying to decide if the other one ‘needs something more’.  Will probably save it for spring.

P1230975It’s hanging on my re-done ‘holiday wall’.

P1230977Here’s a closer look at some of the other holiday wall decor items.

P1230979Bought these little gold frames at the bazaar last week.  The ‘Merry Christmas’ ornament is just ‘tied on’ with ribbon and can be removed so the frame can be otherwise used.

P1230980Same with this one.

Book pages star wreath revisited. Did I ruin it?

So, I played around with some different materials to use as a bow on my book pages star wreath.P1230876

It DOES need ‘something’, but none of the bows I tried looked right.

P1230913I had some ‘Joueux Noel’ strips of printed paper from a previous project that I thought I’d try.  But it didn’t show up very well against the book page stars.  So I glued on a silver snowflake, and put the Noel across it.


 But just ONE silver thing on the wreath looked odd, so I added three silver glitter stars.  I don’t really like the silver stars in the middle of the big stars, but they didn’t look any better elsewhere.  (and I played around with positions for them for about 5 minutes?!?)


NOW I’m thinking I should have left well enough alone!!  Oh well, we’ll see if it sells, I guess.  I’ve got enough stars to make several more!

Old book pages stars wreath

I am soooooooooooooooooo far behind on my Christmas craft projects!   In fact, I’m wondering if maybe I shouldn’t just take everything that I’ve finished in the last week and ‘pack it away’ for NEXT year!?!  (which I HAVE been know to do in the past.)   It’s such a nice surprise to pull out a box of craft supplies and find a bunch of projects already DONE!  Plus, I always seem to come across a bunch of really cute Christmas craft and decor ideas the week before Christmas, which is entirely too late for the current year, and I’ll have forgotten about them by next year . . . so I make up a few and stash them for next year!

I guess this next project isn’t necessarily Christmas themed, but it has a Christmas ‘feel’ to it.  Here’s the ‘inspiration photo’ from Pinterest:


And below is MY rendition:

P1230876I did a few more layers that it looks like the original one had; and I made my stars in four sizes, and some smaller than on the original.  Here’s how I did it:

While it’s really a very simple looking wreath, and easy enough to figure out ‘how to construct’ on your own; it was MUCH MORE time consuming than I had anticipated.  Putting it together is fairly ‘quick & easy’, but the PREP work is very labor intensive!  You have been forewarned!

:: First you have to hunt down for of five different shades and prints of book pages, and tear out a bunch of those.

:: Then go to your scrap cardboard stash  (What?!?!  Doesn’t everyone have a stash of cardboard scraps?!?! Mine are mostly cut up cereal boxes) and find some good size pieces of cardboard.

:: Next, it GLUING TIME!  Grab your bottle of tacky glue (regular school glue is a bit too ‘wet’ and will cause your paper to warp more) and start gluing your paper to your cardboard.  I spent well over an hour doing this.  *** (IF you are using reclaimed cereal boxes, BE SURE to glue your paper to the PLAIN side, not the printed size; as the pictures may show through some of the papers.)  Put your glued pages under a stack of heavy books to dry and flatten over-night.

:: The next day, or however long it takes your glued pages to completely dry and harden; find a star shape you like and trace out a cardboard template.  I used a plastic star ornament to trace, then cut a few down to smaller sizes.


:: Now that you have your templates, START TRACING!  Trace as many stars per page as you possible can, and be sure to make each star size out of each paper pattern.  I did enough for multiple projects, so not I have a stash of ‘ready to use’ stars whenever the creative mood strikes!  I also always do my craft project prep work ‘assembly line style’.  IE trace out ALL the star pages, then cut out ALL the stars.


::  Which, coincidentally is your next, and the most time consuming step; cutting out the stars!  I ‘pre-cut’ each page of stars by cutting away each one so that I can ‘detail cut’ them one at a time.  Then once I have my pile of individually ‘rough cut-out’ stars, I go back and cut along the lines.  Since the ‘points’ tend to get bent up easily, I just went ahead and rounded the tips of all of mine.


I ended up having to ‘press’ my cut out stars under those heavy books overnight again.

NOW FOR THE FUN PART.  I didn’t look at the inspiration picture until after I was done, as I did not want to ‘copy it’; but mine did come out very close to the same!

P1230862:: This next step WOULD have taken me an additional day (to make and let dry) if I hadn’t had a stash of them pre-made and ready to use.  I cut up circles of corrugated cardboard, glue two together, then glue strips of paper bag paper around it to make it nice and strong.  Press under heavy books overnight.


:: I put ‘stripes of glue’ all the way around my circle wreath form; added the biggest sheet music stars, evenly spaced out first.

P1230866:: Second layer of dictionary page stars between the sheet music ones.

P1230867At those two layers, my star ends started curling a bit for the moisture, so I decided to stop and re-press under those books overnight.


:: Next were the smaller sizes of stars and I wanted to be ‘raised’ a little.  I cut up small squares of scrap corrugated cardboard and glued them to the backs of the small stars before I glued them to my wreath.

P1230873:: Gluing on the raised stars.  I’d glue a few, then step back and look at it.  Add a few more and step back again.  this is the best way I know to prevent ‘over embellishing’.


First layer of ‘raised’ stars complete.


Adding a few more ‘layers’ of smaller raised stars.


Close up.


LOVE the vintage Japanese pages!

P1230876I think I’m done!!


One last peek at the inspiration photo.  So I need to add a bow to mine too?

EDITED TO ADD: Someone asked how I hang these; and since it took me several ‘trials and errors’ to come up with this simple way to hang my flat cardboard wreaths; here is how I do it:

P1240027I attach a piece of jute BEFORE I add the stuff to the front of the wreath.  I glue it in place, then glue (tacky glue) a few strips of paper over the ends to be sure they don’t pull out.

Upcycled crochet thread showmen

For a long time, old spools of crochet thread were really popular, and sold well ‘as is’.

1-30-13-stars-projects-029I’d put hand stamped tea stained labels on some, and just toss them in a big old bowl!

5-10-12-etsy-stars-projects-045Sometimes I’d add other embellishments.

dsc00011When I could find smaller spools, I’d toss them in a big glass jar; those always sold fast.  The cones of thread and yarn always sold well too.  I used to create entire displays of old spools of yarn and crochet thread.


And I still have a pretty good stash of the crochet thread.  I had to come up with something different to do with them.

p1070454I thought these crochet thread ‘mini cakes’ were a creative way to use up some of the odds and ends.


They were really fun to make.


And I thought they looked adorable on my upcycled cupcake stands!  Alas, the ‘shoppers’ did not share my vision.  Back to the drawing board!


I usually only buy white and cream colors, but occasionally there are some other colors mixed in with the big bagfuls at the thrift store.  I used up the orange ones to make some Jack-o-lanterns a few years back.

p1090771So, a couple of years ago I came up with these guys.  (Those hats are made from ‘cooked’ styrofoam coffee cups!   They melt down into cute little hat shapes!)  I wanted to do something a little different this year though.

P1230858I mostly only had this one size of spools, so I decided to only stack two of them this time.  Here’s how I made them.

P1230763Some of these spools were fairly ‘bare’, so I put the fuller spools on the bottom.  glued them together with some tacky glue.

P1230764I had seen these little ‘hat’ ornaments at Dollar Tree and decided they would look cute on my snow-dudes.

P1230766The top part of the hat is just styrofoam, and when I pulled the hanger out, it left a hole.  I filled the hole with tacky glue, and waited for the glue to dry to add glitter.  But all the glue dripped down into the hat and the hole was still there!


So, I stuffed some tissue paper into the hole, then more glue; then silver glitter.


Since the top spools were pretty ‘bare’, I decided to cover the spools with some vintage style mica flakes.

P1230770I just thinned down some of the cheapo Dollar Tree school glue; brushed it onto one spool at a time, and rolled it in the mica flakes.   You really have to be sure your spool is really SOAKED with the glue solution because the thread absorbs it.

P1230772The mica flakes added just enough sparkle, but you can still see that they are made from spools of crochet thread.  I thought about using glitter, and I suppose it would work fine; but it would probably cover the tread and hide it quite a bit.

P1230771I let them dry overnight.

P1230887I glued a round piece of cardboard to the bottom to add some stability.

P1230857I glued the hats on with tacky glue, (Oh! I added a band of black ribbon around the hats) and made them a scarf from the same ribbon.  Glued on mis-matched black buttons.  Made charcoal eyes and a carrot nose out of sculpey clay (baked to harden before gluing on)

P1230880Just for comparison, and to see which sells first, and because I just happened to have three spools in graduated sizes; I made one without the mica flakes.

P1230886I gave this one some little rusty bells instead of buttons, and a strip of tea stained muslin for a scarf.

P1230885And tucked one tiny rusty bell onto the hat.

P1230888Which do you like better?

P1230890These guys will be headed to Stars next week.

My newest collection

I have a new little collection going.

P1230515Of long neck apothecary bottles.

P1230516I wasn’t really collecting them ‘on purpose’.  I just like this style of bottles and had stashed away a few while I was packing to move.  Then bought more before I unpacked those; intending them to eventually use for craft projects.


I didn’t really have any room in my craft room to stash them; so I displayed them on a shelf in my living room.  Once I saw them all grouped together like this, I decided I really liked them ‘as is’ and all clustered together like this!

I just found a new one to add that is teeny tiny; only about 1/4 the size of the smallest brown bottle!  And THAT is about the height of excitement in my life!

Prettied up prayer candles

Here’s my newest batch of prettied up prayer candles.

P1230512In the past I’ve used vintage sheet music for the background paper.  This time I decided on old dictionary pages.

P1230514There are SO many pretty colors and styles if paper doilies available now.  I love this turquoise and kraft combination.  The center medallion was punched from some wrapping paper I bought that has assorted vintage looking handwriting on it.

P1230650I don’t care for the look of the plain white paraffin wax that these are made of, and they always have at least an extra inch of wick.  So I top them off with some scented candle was.

P1230649I tied a couple of reproduction keys around the rim with some turquoise/white bakers twine.

167532You can find prayer candles at just about ANY grocery store, but the plain white ones like this can sometime be more difficult to find.  Dollar Tree always has them in stock.

P1230513My booth at Stars is SOOOOO packed with Christmas stuff right now that I am probably going to set these aside until the first of the year, or maybe spring.
P1230521I made this altered bottle at the same time as the candles.  Just an old glass bottle and some of the wrapping paper glued around it.

P1230520The ‘padlock’ came from the craft store.

P1230519As did this key with ‘MEMORY’ stamped into it.  (I think the key was from a Tim Holtz set.)  I put a band of tea stained muslin around the neck of the bottle, and tied the key on with bakers twine.  I’ll set this one aside too, until I get a whole batch of altered bottles made to take in.

Now, back to watching Christmas movies on the Hallmark channel, and ‘resting up’ for craft show delivery and set up.

Every Husband’s Nightmare at the Washington County Fairplex; Tuesday – Saturday.

Country heart shelf – AGAIN!!

I’ve lost track of how many of this EXACT type of shelf with the heart cut-outs I’ve made over through the years!

P1230198The hearts are TOTALLY dated and have to go!  But the shelf style, by itself, is really a very timeless style.  I just get rid of the hearts and add backing.  Adding the backing is optional, but I really prefer to always add backing.  Items just ‘show’ better against a backing.

P1230219I painted it my ‘new blue’ of course.  HELPFUL HINT: Paint the shelf and the backing separately before attaching the back.  It will be much easier and faster that way!


Since it’s not really possible to ‘remove’ the heart cut-outs, the best option is to COVER them up.  I just cut a piece of ‘luan’ the same size as the top piece and glue it on.  Once the glue dries and add a few finishing nails at the corners.

P1230226The added piece over the hearts could easily be left plain; I decided to add these decorative elements.


 They are made of resin (originally they were ornaments) I cut off the wire loop and glued them to the luan.   Once the glue was set, I just did a little ‘dry brush’ painting over them.

P1230227I hand sanded the edges a bit so some of the original white paint showed through.


As soon as I have for ‘room’ in my booth; I will be taking it to Stars.

Christmas Crafting Chaos!

The Christmas Crafting Chaos has begun!

P1230399I am not EVEN kidding!  This is what my living room looked like two days ago!

P1230400And there are stacks of bins BEHIND me as I took this photo.  sigh.  It’s not usually THIS bad.  Typically I start working on my Christmas stuff the first of October.  With my carpal tunnel surgery the end of September this year though, I had to put it off for nearly a month.  Sorting inventory between Stars and Farmhouse Rustic, crafting new items and STILL purging stuff I haven’t used for years all at the same time made for quite the mess.

P1230481HALF of the mess in my living room is now gone and has turned into THIS, in my booth at Stars.

P1230425Thanks to my son and his new bride, and the Michael’s gift card they gave me for my birthday, I was able to splurge on a new pre-lit 7′ pencil tree.  Sooooo much skinnier than my old tree that took up about 1/4 of my booth.

P1230418I decided on gold and a ‘woodlands’ theme for my tree this year.

P1230419Gold glittered churches and little cold cherubs aren’t entirely woodland, but the rest of the ornaments are.  See the little gold pine-cone ornaments?Clip pn nests

P1230420Clip on nest ornaments that I made.  Hard to see the color of the eggs in this picture, but they are painted gold then dusted with pixie dust glitter (the really fine iridescent white glitter).

P1230421Gold glitter reindeer.

P1230422A slightly better picture of one of the nests; and gold acorn and pine-cone orns.

P1230424Clip on gold glitter birds, with crowns of course!

P1230423A few over-sized gold and glitter to break up all the small decorations; and some shiney brown glass balls.

P1230427A few extra bird ornaments nestled in a vintage gold urn.


A bowlful of brown pine-cone ornaments and a vintage owl creamer.
P1230413A bowl of big gold jingle-bells and another with mercury glass balls.  How cute is that silver plated nutcracker salt shaker?

P1230415Another vintage owl creamer and owl salt and pepper set.
P1230416Pretty gold trimmed vintage casserole dish and a small dove topped dish.

P1230428Vintage Santa punch or egg nog bowl.

P1230431Lots of boxed sets of vintage glass ornaments.

P1230430Music box; top lifts off with a candy dish below.

P1230435Santa head glass ornaments.

P1230449Under the tree, a basketful of assorted ‘extras’, gold glitter stars, printed ribbon/garland and more of the sheer gold tulle ribbon that I used as garland on my tree.

P1230425The gold tulle ribbon garland is very ‘subtle’ and barely even noticeable in the photos, but it adds a shimmery softness to the overall look of the tree.  I always use tulle as garland in my trees.

Here is the order that I add things to my tree: Lights first of course – tulle garland – bead garlands – BIG ornaments evenly spaced – medium size ornaments – then lastly fill in with your smallest orns.

P1230451Vintage candle stand holds extra ornaments.

P1230452In keeping with the woodland theme, I made several of the gold owls with crowns in the top larger opening.  I filled the rest of this huge cubby shelf with vintage Tom & Jerry mugs, Santa mugs, footed hot toddy mugs  . . .

P1230426A gold Christmas crown of course!

P1230444Vintage baby dolls on a vintage child’s chair.

P1230468Gold decorated vintage ice skate.

P1230436Vintage milk glass serving platters.

P1230437The largest one is embossed with a turkey and gold-rimmed.  What a treasure!

P1230462A set of vintage hand painted turkey salt and pepper shakers with the original box.


Headed out to do some major ‘treasure hunting’ tomorrow, then deliver to Farmhouse Rustic in Oregon City next week.  Last weekend she moved her shop around the corner to a BIGGER space, so I’ll have LOTS MORE stuff to take pictures of to show you!

More cubby shelves

No such thing as too many cubby shelves! P1230210I actually found two of these at the same time.P1220428  Because the cubbies are pretty small AND they already had backings, I opted to spray paint them to save time.  I hand distressed the edges just a bit.

Took one to the new ‘Farmhouse Rustic’ in Oregon City, and one is set aside for Stars . . . as soon as there is room for it.  I just took Christmas stuff in today, so  I probably won’t have room for it until after Christmas.

THANK YOU ALL FOR THE GREAT INPUT ON THE KEURIG!  I am now officially on the hunt for a Keurig Mini Plus, in Red or Turquoise.  

Published in: on November 5, 2015 at 8:56 pm  Leave a Comment  

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