Google+ House Revivals: October 2015

Thursday, October 29, 2015

Easy Last Minute Sugar Skull Decor!

Here is an easy last minute Halloween Sugar Skull project! This sugar skull project is suitable for bigger kids or adults. Basically, if you can use scissors and fold paper, you can do this craft.

I made my sugar skulls into an All Souls Day bunting, but you can use your sugar skulls singly, as well.

Tuesday, October 27, 2015

Make a Pretty Garland for Fall

This post originally appeared on House Revivals in 2011, and is being re-published because it is easily adapted to fall decor. While the inspiration was a Japanese Magnolia, this process will lend itself to chrysanthemum inspired projects, as well.

While we remodel our house, we're living in a tiny city apartment with a rooftop garden.  The garden has some beautiful blooming shrubs.  They are really lovely right now and inspired me to create this simple spring garland.

The shrubs look a bit like a Pussy Willow, but the branching pattern is different.  With some research, we discovered they are a variety of Japanese Magnolia.

The buds are velvety soft, and open up for these lovely white flowers to emerge.  Eventually, the entire shrub will be covered in these white blossoms.

The garland interpretation is not literal -- it's just inspired by the simple exuberance of the blooms.

I wanted to keep the form simple, adding interest by layering texture. This was done by using a combination of vintage crepe paper, crinoline, and vintage book paper.  You don't need to use exactly what I used to create a similar effect -- just use what you have on hand.  Maybe you have an old silk blouse, some cheesecloth, and a binder of old hand-written college notes?   You could even use your junk mail!

Begin by cutting your materials into strips and cutting a fringe into both long sides, as shown here.  The size you use will depend on the width and fullness you want for your flower.  I used pieces about seven inches long by about two and one-half to three inches wide, depending on which layer I was cutting.

You can stack your strips, cutting several layers at a time, if you wish.

Then tie each strip into a little bundle, using string or thread or wire.

Layer your bundles as desired and tie them together.  Then fluff and coax your flowers into shape.

I actually added the book page layer last, gluing it to the back perpendicular to the other layers to sort of "fill out" the flowers.  The centers are simply tiny scraps of crepe paper, about three-quarters of an inch square, snipped into fringe and glued down.  You could use bits of fabric, string or yarn -- even a button or bead.

The flowers were glued to lengths of finger crocheted thread to create a garland.  Again, you'll want to use whatever you have on hand for this -- it could be torn strips of fabric, selvages, twine, even wire -- just use what's handy.

I layered my garland with lengths of torn draped crinoline.

On a difficulty scale between one and ten, I'd give this project about a three (owing mostly to having to clean up all the little snippets of string and thread and paper -- I had it all over my clothes, on my desk, and on the carpet before I was finished)!

 This is a fun, forgiving craft.  Imperfectly inspired by nature -- not a perfect imitation of nature.

What inspires you to create?

If you enjoyed this post, please subscribe to House Revivals in the sidebar, so you won't miss the fun projects we have planned. Find us on Facebook, too, so you can catch all the "in between" stuff, and see what I'm working on daily on Instagram. Feel free to link today's project to your favorite social media sites.

Thanks so much for stopping by!

Tuesday, October 20, 2015

Make Your Own Paper Bead Roller!

This article for appeared on House Revivals in May of 2014.

If you love rolling paper beads -- or you just want to give it a try, here is a quick and easy way to make your own bead rolling tool using items you have around the house.

I was rolling my beads using the old school method, and it was seriously cramping my hands. I thought there had to be a better way, but didn't have the willpower to wait two days for a bead roller to come in the mail. 

Tuesday, October 13, 2015

Ideas for Pretty Painted Beds

This post originally appeared on House Revivals in October of 2013.

In a couple of days I'm heading back to the beach house -- hopefully to paint some bedroom furniture! For inspiration I've been scouring catalogs, websites, and furniture stores. I don't know about you, but I love color. I have these conflicting voices in my head, saying "paint your bed a cheerful pretty color" and "paint your bed a safe color"....  Guess which voice is winning?

I know, I know, it's been two years since the major part of our remodel, and I am still working on finishes and furnishings......  

Tuesday, October 6, 2015

Decorate and Organize With Repurposed Trunks

This post first appeared on House Revivals in January of 2014.

I think I will never get tired of dusty old trunks and chests. They all have stories hidden away inside. As a kid, I loved looking at the old newspapers that had been used to line some old trunks that my mother had. I used to have a hump-backed trunk that was lined with lovely old wallpaper.  I used it to store vintage linens. Another trunk was used as a bedside table. We no longer have the hump-backed trunk -- it was a victim of a cross-country move years ago, but the other trunk still serves as storage. These days we use it to store Christmas ornaments.

That's the wonderful thing about trunks. They can live so many lives.  They start out going on grand adventures, and later retire to life as an end table or are tucked away in an attic, storing treasured items.