- You may feel silly wearing protective wear, but your eyes, skin, and lungs will thank you. When using any supplies that states use in a well-ventilated area–wear a dust and filter mask that covers your nose and mouth. Also wear when sanding and cutting with power saws. The fine dust particles are bad for your lungs. Wear goggles when working at close contact with spray paints and power tools. Also don’t forget the rubber gloves when working with chemicals, dyes, and other products that can irritate skin.
- Work in a circle: Have items you use all the time including your tools like scissors in the front part of the circle within easy reach. Other items can fill in the circle. This set-up is less stressful and not as exhausting as having to hunt down the items you need.
- Storage of supplies is always a problem– store up, down, here and there, but NEVER on the floor. It’s an accident waiting to happen and very frustrating.
- Always get up every hour (when sitting for a long time) and stretch–your legs, neck, back, and arms.
- Lighting is very important–even if you have to make an investment in new fixtures and bulbs. Avoid eyestrain and mistakes (especially when matching colors) with good lighting. Mother Nature is best so if possible set-up near a sunny window.
- Never completely relax when using power tools or anything that uses electricity. Mistakes and accidents happen when we take these tools for granted.
- If it smells…it’s probably not good for your respiratory system. Buy non-toxic glues, paints, and sprays. Unscrew the lid of a liquid and smell for fumes. No room is ventilated well enough for some of these products.
- Rotary scissors are wonderful to relieve hand and wrist stress, but buy one with a retractable blade. Always replace the cover of sharp, pointed tools to avoid accidents.
By Home Decor Contributor Jennifer from Brave New Home.
When we went to a museum on our last family trip, my toddler became engrossed with this little weaving loom the museum had as part of their hands-on kid section. Even though his little fingers weren’t quite able to weave the yarn, we couldn’t pull him away from trying.
When we got back from our trip, I thought about ways to make a weaving loom that would be appropriate for his level of hand-eye coordination. For this project I used a wood frame that I picked up for a dollar, yarn, paint, hot glue, and wire.
I started by removing any frame bits from the frame (like the metal brackets that keep the photo in place). I marked where I would drill holes for the wires to fit through. After drilling my holes, I sanded over the entire surface.
The wood frame received a coat of paint then I started inserting the wire through the holes. I suggest covering the ends of the wire with hot glue or some sort of tape as a safety precaution.
I was planning on using a craft stick to thread the yarn but the wooden dowel that came with the frame ended up being an even better fit so I got glued the end of my yarn to it. I did a few rows of weaving as an example before explaining it to my toddler.
By General Crafts Contributor Monica from the blog Mon Makes Things.
Now for the braiding…
- Place your base cord over the midpoint of your side cords (the fold if using one color OR the point where your colors are linked if using two colors). You want your side cords down just far enough so that they create a loop the size of your wooden bead at the top of the base cord. If it helps, tape the loop to a book or table with washi tape, or pin the loop to your jeans with your safety pin.
- Place your left cord over your base cords, leaving a loop on the left side.
- Place your right cord over the length of the left cord that is now on the right side, slide your right cord under your base cords, under the loop created by the left cord on the left side, and through the loop.
- Pull your cords tight. **Refer to the animation above for reference!**
- Now do the same thing in reverse:
- Place your right cord over your base cords, leaving a loop on the right side.
- Place your left cord over the length of the right cord that is now on the left side, slide your left cord under your base cords, under the loop created by the right cord on the right side, and through the loop.
- Pull your cords tight.
- Repeat steps 2 – 8 until your bracelet fits your wrist.
- When your bracelet is your desired length, slide your wooden bead onto the base cords (if not all the cords), and tie a knot using all the cords. Using your lighter, carefully melt the cord ends and parts of the knot to keep it secure.
- To wear, slide your knot and bead through the loop!
I have three different styles pictured here. The orange and pink bracelets are done with different colored side cords, the larger white bracelet is done using two long strands of white cord over a thicker purple cord for the base (finished with a knot and no bead), and the white bracelet with beads uses a single strand of long white cord with beads strung onto the base cord ever 8 knots! Get creative with your designs!
This is a fun and easy craft for kids, too — sort of like friendship bracelets! If you whip some up, I’d love to see what you come up with!
By Crafts-a lot Contributor, Mable who is an avid reader of craft blogs & magazines and has aspirations to improve her crafting skills. Join Mable on Facebook to socialize and share with other crafters!
Celebrity Craft Professional Mark Montano’s latest book the Big-Ass Book of Bling is full of enough projects to cover you in bling from head to toe! This necklace is just one of the many accessory projects you can make with household items and imagination. Visit our friend Mark Montano’s website for even more crafty and DIY bling ideas!
I think this actually looks like a key to another dimension. If you were to neatly place the smaller stones you could perhaps make your astrology sign? Just a thought.
WHAT YOU NEED:
- 22” of small to medium gold or silver chain
- 90 1 1/2” long silver or gold safety pins
- 1 silver or gold lobster claw
- 15 silver or gold tone jump rings
- 7” of medium gauge wire
- Needle nose pliers that can also cut wire
- 1 large flat back crystal rhinestone
- Several small flat back crystal rhinestones
- E-6000 glue
- 1 ½” diameter circle of aluminum flashing
Read the Directions after the Jump…
By Yarn Crafts Contributor Joselyn
Finding your dream pair of gloves, mittens, or arm warmers is very tough. With all of the patterns out there, you’d think there would be at least one that fits all of your needs. Don’t feel alone if you haven’t found the right pair or even knitting pattern yet, the same thing happened to me. I invented this pattern to be adaptable and something I could do while watching TV without too much counting. I’ve made tons of versions of these since I wrote up the pattern, some shorter, some with different cables, but always with the stretchy ribbing on the parts without a cable.
Here’s What You Need:
- Size 8 Double Pointed Knitting Needles
- Stitch Holders or Safety Pins
Here’s the Pattern…
By Crafts for Learning Contributor, Danielle from the blog Crayonbox Learning.
© Danielle Westvang – Crayonbox Learning
- Tissue Paper (different shades of blue)
- Small (clean) empty glass baby food jar
- Mod Podge (Gloss Luster)
- Paint Brush
- Grosgrain Ribbon (coordinating colors)
- Tea Light
- Take a small clean (and dry) glass baby food jar and put it into your work space.
- Cut different shades of blue tissue paper into small squares.
- Using a clean paint brush, paint a thin layer of Mod Podge onto the glass jar. Do not paint the Mod Podge onto the whole jar at one time.
- Begin adding the blue tissue paper onto the thin layer in Mod Podge. The Mod Podge will act like a glue and hold the tissue paper in place. Staggering the pieces of tissue onto the glass jar (see picture) gives the jar a stained glass look.
- Use your finger to smooth the edges on the tissue paper as you’re placing it onto the jar.
- Keep adding Mod Podge around the jar and add the tissue paper pieces until the jar is completely covered.
- You will want to leave a small space uncovered at the top of the jar where the lid would have screwed on.
- After the jar is covered completely, use your paint brush to apply a thin coat of Mod Podge onto the jar.
- Let the layers of Mod Podge dry before adding a new layer.
- Add one more layer of Mod Podge to create a seal on the jar. Let dry completely.
- Add Grosgrain ribbon around the top of the jar. Glue down to give the candle holder a finished look.
- You can add embellishments as desired, but be mindful of the fact that the tea light may warm the jar so you won’t want anything added on that may get too warm.
NOTE: Always practice safety when lighting candles. Do not leave unattended, or in the reach of small children.
By Crafts for Learning Contributor, Danielle from the blog Crayonbox Learning.
As summer draws to an end, students will be heading back to school. The Bus Key ring is designed to put the important information for each student in one location in the event the student becomes lost, or forgets what bus they need to get on, or who their emergency contact is.
The Bus Key ring was designed with safety of young children in mind. Most children carry backpacks or some sort of bag to carry their books and papers back and forth. The Bus Key ring template does not put the child’s name on the outside of the key ring. The purpose of the name being placed on the inside of the key ring is so that persons coming up alongside the child will not be able to call their name. (The same principle applies to not putting the name of the child on the back of shirts/sweatshirts).
The 4 page template includes a yellow bus cover, blank bus covers with lines to write information on, and a blank bus template for you to add your own information.
- Binder Ring
- Lamination film
- Felt (permanent ink) Marker
- Hole punch
- Click to Download Bus Key Ring Template
- Print the bus templates onto cardstock.
- Use a permanent ink felt marker (non-bleed) to write the specific information for each child.
- Cut out the individual bus pieces.
- Laminate using a heat seal laminator. (Hint: cutting out the pieces before lamination provides a better seal around the individual pieces.)
- Use a hole punch to punch out the ring hole in each bus piece.
- Add binder ring and secure on student’s bag or backpack.