Los Carnavales

carnival (2)One thing on my check list is to check out Carnival. Joe and I drove down to DC 2 years ago, some how we missed the West Indian parade. Maybe it was a blessing in disguise, turns out there was a shooting that went on. Yikes! But the after party was just as exciting.

One of the biggest and most festive Carnival in the world was just celebrated in Colombia; Carnaval de Barranquilla. Upbeat music and dancing filled the streets of this industrial port city north of Columbia. The high energy festivities lasted 4 days showcasing decorative costumes and headpieces covered in vibrant feathers, beads and all things shiny.

Even though I couldn’t make it to the lively streets of Barranquilla, doesn’t mean I have to miss it completely. Libation down in LES will be dedicating this Friday to the fun festivities with a New York twist featuring Que Bajo. I love nothing more then the excuse to dress up! My head piece is ready to go. Saúde, to the fun things in life!carnival (4)carnival (3)carnival

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Stark Visual Contrast

black & white stripes (2)A classic pairing of black and white stripes is “Oh, so chic!”  Not only trending in apparel but also lends a great decorative touch in the world of interior. Let’s make a statement piece with a DIY painted black and white stripe canvas. It’s “Oh, so simple!”

What you’ll need:
Stretch cotton canvas (I have a 10″ x 12″)
Flat paint brush
Black acrylic paint
Paint palette
Pencil
Ruler
Masking tape

I’m painting an even 3/4″ black and white stripes.
1- Using your ruler and pencil make 3 tiny marks from the sides and the center. This will be the indication of where you will place your masking tape.
2- Place tape right under pencil marks.black & white stripes (3)3- Continue process until you get to the bottom of the canvas. You should be creating an alternating pattern of stripes with the tape and the exposed canvas.
4- Squeeze out some acrylic paint onto the paint palette.
5- Apply paint with a flat brush onto the exposed canvas.black & white stripes (4)6- Allow 1st layer of paint to dry.
7- Apply 2nd coat.
8- Once paint is dry, remove masking tape carefully.black & white stripesTaaaAaaa-DaaAaaa… Your master piece is complete. My stripes are a little uneven, but I like how it gives the canvas a more playful painterly look.

Black and white stripes will give your place a POP and a modern day chic aesthetic. Have a little fun with it by incorporating the canvas to a collection of frames on the wall, it can be  a back drop to your accessory collection, on a vanity table with a vase of fresh blooms, against a book shelf or even by your mini bar. The possibilities are endless.

Daydreaming

profile doileWhat a loooOoonnnnnng week… anticipating Friday gave me the urge to daydream a little. We’re just a day away! I haven’t used my markers in a while and thought it would be fun to doodle. I’ve always been so inspired by the delicate touch of doilies. Maybe I can make this into a collection of profile art? What do you think. Any suggestions?

Unraveling Love Ball

Over a period of time, I have collected so many images through the lens of my camera from film to digital. Capturing these ever lasting memories that will last a life time. Wouldn’t it be a wonderful idea to compile some of theses photos onto a storage space that can be shared? There are many websites that I’ve uploaded my albums onto but the quality is just not comparable. Here’s the perfect gift that would be great for not only a birthday, but can also be for an anniversary or just because. I recently found the cutest little Lego fireman flash drive from Staples when I got to the register. Wrapping goes along way to make a gift unique and extra special. I was inspired by Rubyellen’s Love Ball from Cakies.loveballI had a stash of crepe paper rolls from my previous projects that worked perfectly for wrapping the ball. The layers of colors added so much joy. What a fun project! Inside the ball of love was a little note that read “I feel like I know you so well.” What did you think of the gift? Would it bring a smile to your face?

Hello Domo

domo1Such a large gift to wrap. What should I do? I had a roll of brown kraft paper laying around which I thought would be fun to decorate. The shape of the quilt reminded me of a giant marshmallow. I pulled out my acrylic paints, brushes and paint palette and went right at it. I had so much fun putting this together. Domo was large enough to keep me company for the rest of the afternoon. She really did make my day shine a little brighter.

domo2First wrap the quilt. Slash the ends to help fold a nice rounded edge. Tape accordingly. Cut a circle for the top to hide the ends.domo3Let’s add a splash of color onto the neutral ground. I made Domo a crown and added some tinsel. What’s a celebration without something shiny?domo4Well, Hello there!domo5

Pottery Painting

painting pottery2Pottery painting at Mudd Works with my sister-in-law and the kids. A fun group activity for young and old. The ceramic pieces are premade and lined up against the shelves as you enter the shop. There are many options to choose from over 300 choices: various bowls, plates, piggy banks, jewelry boxes, mugs, frames & more. After you choose your colors  you’re ready to paint your master piece. All brushes, sponges, paint palettes and aprons are provided. The piece is glazed and fire up in the kiln for the finishing touch. It’s a great idea for a kid’s party.The people there were so friendly and helpful.painting potterypainting pottery1pottery

Sugar Flower Workshop

sugar flower Last Christmas my husbie got creative and gave my sister and I a gift to Sugar Flower Cake Shop. We took a sugar flower making class creating garden roses from scratch using gum paste and painted with edible pigment. The technique was fairly simple. But the challenging part was working with the delicate petals once they’re dried. A couple of my petals fell off the wired stem as I was painting them. We had such a great time and the instructors were so nice. Sugar flowers can last a life time as long as they’re keep in cool temperature. Isn’t that wonderful? sugar flower1sugar flower3sugar flower2My appreciation for sugar flowers have increased after learning the technique and hard work put into each bloom. The shop had some gorgeous cakes displayed near the brightly lite windows. I would love to go back and take more classes in the future. It was such a great experience!

Sleeping Mask

cat mask7-8 hours of sleep sounds mighty good to me. But I always find it difficult to crawl into bed early enough to fulfill those hours. Especially when my mind is churning so quickly with new ideas for my next project.

This sleeping mask will be a good reminder to work 24 hours a week 7 days a month and take frequent cat naps. My new creations was made for the recent slumber party with my girlfriend. If you’re ready for a challenge here’s the step by step instructions below.cat mask1

Supplies needed:
Poplin- 1/4 yd multi print stacks from Purl Patchwork
Silk- 1/2 yd lining fabric from Mood Fabrics
Quilt batting- 1/4 yd from Daytona Trims
1 yard of flat metallic soutache

Metallic lamé
Framed glasses
Pencil
Ruler
Scissor
Satin pins
Iron
Fusible
Magna tac
Safety pin
Needle and thread
Sewing machinecat mask patterns

1 Create a pattern

A- Create pattern for the front. Trace around frame of glasses for your guideline of the width and the length of mask. Fold paper in half, around the arch of the nose. Sketch 1/2 of the mask. Then transfer to other side with a light-box or against a lite window. Add 1/4″ seam allowance around edge of pattern. If you understand pattern making you can create different sections for contrasting fabrics to create a patch work look.

B- Create lining pattern. If your front pattern is just one piece you do not need to recreate another pattern. If not, create one pattern then add 1/4″ seam allowance around edges.

C- Create separate pattern for the interfacing; quilt batting. This is essentially the same as the lining but without seam allowance.

D- Create a pattern for eyelash and ears,no seam allowance necessary.
E- Lable all pattern pieces so you know what you’re working with and how many you’ll need to cut with each specific fabric.
2 Tada …were done! j/k
We’re at lease done with the patterns.cat mask the making

2 Choose fabrics. Poplin for the front and silk for the lining. If you’re going with the challenging patchwork look choose two contrasting fabrics that will sit well together. If not, one will be just fine.

3 Take poplin, lining & lamé fabric and iron on fusible to the back of the fabrics. Use a scrap piece of fabric between iron and fusible to prevent adhesive from melting onto iron. Fused fabric will give your fabric more body, control and stability. (Note: Adhesive on fusible is the rough side of the fabric. Which should iron on to the back side of the fabrics.)

4 Place patterns on fabric. Pin and cut out.

A- Floral printed fabric for front of mask.

B- Silk for lining, so it’ll be smooth when mask is against your face.
C- Lamé for eyelashes and ears.
5 Use Magna Tac and glue eye lashes on to pattern.
6 If your front printed mask has multiple patterns, piece them together either by hand stitch or by machine and iron the seams flat.
7 Place cut pattern of polyfill onto back side of the patterned poplin fabric. Center the polyfill leaving the seam allowance of the patterned fabric exposed.

8 Pin polyfill in place.

9 Pencil in a couple of  lines on the polyfill. These lines will be hand stitched. Using a blind stitch technique. This will hold the polyfill in place. If you have seams from the front of the mask.You can blind stitch in the crack of the seams.

10Take your yard of flat metallic soutache and cut in half.

11 Looking at the front of the mask. Place1/2 the soutache at both sides of the midway point (Fullness of soutache s/b in the inside of the mask.) I coiled the excess and safety pinned it in place.

12 Hand stitch the soutache in place. Stitch onto the seam allowance of the front mask.

13 Place lining and front of mask together (right sides facing each other.)

14 Sew together with sewing machine. Leave about 3″ unsewn on top of mask.

15 Flip mask inside out and hand stitch the remaining closed with the blind stitch technique.

16 Use iron and steam the mask so that the edges will look nice and crisp.

17 Use Magna Tac and glue on Lamé ears.

18 If this wasn’t enough you can decorate the ends of the soutache with gold tassels.

cat mask2

Are you still with me… if so, Congratulation! What do you think was it worth the effort? This can also be used as a blind fold for various games like pin the tail on the donkey. It can also be used for surprising your friend with a gift or leading them into a surprise party or dinner. I just love the little touches.

Here Comes the Bride

A couple of months back my cousin got married and asked me for a favor, to make her a sign the read “here comes the bride.” I’ve never encounter one before so this was something new for me. She gave me colors to work with and the rest was up to me.  The mint/ sage color she chose reminded me of leaves or the woods. The flower girl gets the honor of carrying the sign out right before the bride makes her grand entrance down the aisle. I wanted the font to be more playful. Incorporating some flowing ribbons that flutter from the bottom of the sign was just what it needed for a touch of whimsy.  The beautiful trims were so inspirational from my last visit to M&J Buttons. I found this tulle ruffle adorned with a gold chain that had applied pearls at the center. It was just perfect for the finishing touch.I painted the wooden rod and backed my sign up with foam-core boards. Then put it together with my best crafting friend Mr. Glue gun.  So helpful when it come to late nights.
I figured why not make double use with the sign. After she walked down the isle I quickly changed it to “just married.” The bride dance her way into the reception hall waving the sign. Gorgeous and Brilliant! What other ideas have you seen in the past?