Archive for the 'Big Projects' Category

Travels

At Mel’s request, I’m posting the finished product here that I blogged about last time with my Wicker Basket Tutorial.  It was a card for my grandparent’s sixtieth wedding anniversary! I enjoyed our visit to celebrate their anniversary so much and I took lots of pictures! SO, I have decided that I’m going to make an album for them and give it to them at Christmas.  I don’t want to post all the LOs here (I hope you don’t mind), but you can see my progress thus far here. I’ve been pretty busy with that particular project and all my preparation for work in the fall, so I haven’t had a whole lot of time to blog (or visit).  I hope to remedy the latter soon!  Thanks for reading/looking!

“Wicker” paper basket tutorial

So I’m working on a rather largish project at the moment, but I thought I’d give you a sneak peek by way of a tutorial.  One component of this project is a “wicker basket” made out of paper strips.  I got my inspiration from a quilling book, but decided to take it a step further to see if I could really make it look like wicker.  You might notice that the original number of vertical strips was reduced at the end, but that’s not that important—I think you’ll get the idea.

I started by cutting 6 5mm wide by 11.5cm long strips (vertical strips) out of white copy paper. Use a paper cutter.

Then, using a hand shredder (or you can buy white quilling strips), I made 25 3 mm wide by 7.2 cm long strips (these will be the horizontal “weaving” strips).

I placed all the strips on a piece of paper, and then rolled a brayer over them covered in distress ink–first with Antique Linen, then with Scattered Straw.  Allow them to dry.  If you use copy paper or some other lightweight paper, the paper will become quite wet, but you get good color saturation.  I didn’t want uniform color as I was going for a more “natural” look.

I arranged the vertical strips on a piece of paper, leaving no more than 1mm between them.  Glue the top edge of the strips down lightly (be prepared to trim this part off later as you’ll probably pull up some paper with the glue). Weave in the horizontal strips, alternatively starting over and under with each row. This will take some patience. 🙂 Don’t be afraid to do a loose weave and then adjust all the strips at the end. Once you have all the strips where you want them, strategically glue the strips on the perimeter so it will keep the weave in place. Reserve one or two of the horizontal strips.

Cut a trapezoidal shape (inverted) out of chipboard or other heavyweight paper (this will be dependent on the size basket you want, but mine was 3.8 cm at the top edge, 3cm at the bottom, with roughly a 4.8 cm vertical median)

Flip the weave over (inked side down) and glue down the chipboard in the center, making sure you have enough weave on all sides to fold over. I recommend using a smooth glue so that you can cover the entire surface of the chipboard .

Fold the strips up over the chipboard, trimming as necessary.  Glue and secure with paper strips. Allow to dry.

When dry, flip the basket face up and make a spiral quilled strip with one of the reserve horizontal strips. Glue this to the top edge of the basket (not pictured–yet).

Using a foam brush, coat the entire basket with a layer of Mod-Podge. Use several layers and allow to dry in order to give your “wicker” a lacquered look. 🙂

Voila! You know have a paper “wicker” basket ready for use in a project (coming soon!)

The basket here has not been “lacquered” yet and does not have the ornamental spiral edge. You’ll see that when I’m finished with the entire project. 🙂

Experiments in Window Treatments, Part I

Hmm.  Well our little venture in DIY home improvement meets crafting went OK.  About a month ago, husband and I decided we would try to make our own paper window shades a la Apartment Therapy.  In the instructions over at AT, they DO say, “You need rice paper sold by the yard on a roll.”  True, that.  However, I was reticent to order rice paper online without being able to touch and see it.  So, we headed to Paper Source, and fell in love with this chiyogamish paper that matches our green color on the bedroom walls.

EXHIBIT A

CIMG8847

The only problem is that said paper is not sold by the roll, but instead in 25 1/2″ x 19″ half-sheets.  Hmm.  No worries, we thought…we’ll bind them together.

CIMG8850

Approximately an hour of trimming and experimenting with different adhesives later (finally decided scrapbooking tape was the way to go!) we got this:

CIMG8853CIMG8854

We gave up on matching the pattern and just made sure the center seam (where we had to join the panels of paper) matched all the way down. Then came the easy part…affixing it to the roller mechanism.  We ordered ours here and cut them to size.

CIMG8855

Success, almost!  In all honesty, rolling them up is just slightly wonky and requires that you keep a close eye on the roller to make sure the paper stays aligned.  Below is sort of an eerie photo of the finished shade with the sun beating through.  We were surprised at how much heat it actually did block!!  I’ll post a picture of the shade without light shining through it so you can see that too.

I’m very much hoping that I can order the same paper directly from Paper Source without the precut.  We had to use six panels, whereas using rice paper by the yard would have saved at least an hour’s worth of time.


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