Arkansas Fall Painted Wood Sign

I love browsing the internet for new projects.  Lately I have seen lots of painted wood signs that signal the beginning of the Fall season.  I thought about what fall meant to me and my family and then created a sign that reflected why we love this time of year.  I did my best to take pictures of the various steps in the process so that you can see how I got from the plain sign to the finished design.  

Supplies:

  • Cricut Explore (plus regular blade and regular mat)
  • Wood sign (unfinished)
  • Paint in your choice of colors (I used acrylic, but many people like chalk paint too)
  • Contact Paper (white and clear)
  • Scraper (or old credit card)
  • Pick for weeding vinyl (weeding, just means picking out the parts of the design you don’t need)
  • Matte Modge Podge (only needed if you are going to allow the wood to show through)

1. Paint the wood in the base color of your choice and let dry according to the directions on your paint bottle (if you want the wood to show through leave it unpainted).


2.  Create your design in Cricut Design space, cut the design on the Washi tape setting on the white contact paper and weed out the vinyl you don’t need.

*Special note:  If you don’t have a Cricut Explore electronic cutter you can do this by hand by printing out the design on your computer, cutting it out with scissors, tracing your design onto the contact paper and cutting it out with an exacto knife.  It won’t be as fast, but is totally doable!  If you do use an exacto knife be careful to just cut through the contact paper, but not the paper backing.  You will need the backing when you transfer the design onto the wood.  After cutting out either by Cricut or by hand the rest of the instructions are exactly the same.


3.  Cut out a strip of clear contact paper, place it on top of the design and use your scraper to rub across the clear contact paper.  Lift up a small corner of the clear contact paper to see if the white contact paper lifts with it.  If it does, great job!  If it doesn’t, try turning it over and rubbing from the back side.  You will be using the clear contact paper to transfer the design to the wood.


4. Lift the clear contact paper (the white contact paper should be attached to it) and carefully, starting from left to right, place the design on the wood. Use the scraper to smooth out any bubbles or wrinkles and then lift the clear contact paper (the white contact paper should be left on the wood). If some of the white contact paper is still stuck to the clear contact paper lay the clear contact paper back down and rub again. Repeat this process until the clear contact paper is lifted completely off and the white contact paper design is left on the wood.


5. Paint over the wood and the white contact paper design with your base color.  If you didn’t use a base color, paint over the wood and contact paper design with the matte modge podge.  Allow to dry according to the directions on the paint/modge podge bottle.


6.  Apply two coats of your top paint colors, allowing the paint to dry after the first coat (according to the directions on your paint bottle).  Allow the second coat to dry until it is tacky to the touch, but not all the way dry.   Use your pick to carefully remove the white contact paper design (you will be able to see the outline underneath the paint).  Let the second coat dry completely.  Go back and touch up any areas.  Seal (or not) according to the directions on the paint bottle.  Since my paint was exterior paint I chose not to seal it.  *Side note:  If you are a messy painter like me you might want to slide strips of cardstock between the boards so that you don’t get paint on the other boards.

Here is the finished sign!

If you try this project drop me a note to let me know how yours turned out!

Bye!

Heat Transfer Vinyl Tshirts (w/Cricut Explore)

ARE YOUphoto-20150711085016326 READY FOR SOME FOOTBALL!!?? I know we are more than a month away, but football camp and 7 on 7 season is here. What better way to support our son/brother than to sport his school colors/player’s number? These only took a couple of hours using the Rhinestone Wizard, my Cricut and my handy dandy heat press (I’m so glad I have this — it really speeds up the process). However, you could totally do this project with just a cutter and vinyl.

I used magic templates from The Rhinestone World and then imported the design into design space (for the football designs). I was really afraid that the font for the stadium seat wouldn’t cut or weed properly, but it actually turned out easier than I thought – plus since its a grunge type font no would know if a piece was missing. 🙂 Anyway, a super fun way to kick off the “early” football season! As for the wild-card shirt in the photo…I also pressed a track shirt for my hubby that was LOOOONG over due.
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Bye!

 

Fun With Freezer Paper

16317036176_e6465e3b85I’ve been on a T-shirt making kick lately. I think its because it’s a craft that almost anyone can do. When my nieces and nephew were visiting we decided to do freezer paper T-shirts. I asked them and my  kids what they wanted on their t-shirts. I designed the layout in Cricut design space and cut out the freezer paper with my Cricut Explore (remember to put the freezer paper shiny side down on the mat).

For those who don’t have an electronic paper cutter you can totally do this project by printing or dr16155393258_d9cfd576eaawing your design on the dull side of the freezer paper and cutting out the design with an exacto knife. Remember to keep the small pieces that will give your design definition (like the inside circles from letters)
 
Here’s what you’ll need to do your own freezer paper shirts:
  1. Freezer Paper (found near the foil in your local grocery store)
  2. Electronic paper cutter (like a Cricut) or an exacto knife
  3. T-shirt or other garment/item of your choice
  4. Fabric paints (I use the weekly 40% coupon at Hobby Lobby to cut costs here)
  5. Sponge brushes (found in the craft section of your local discount or craft store)  
Once you have your design cut out of the freezer paper just iron the freezer paper to your T-shirt (no steam), shiny side DOWN – if you mess this part up you’ll ruin your iron (ask me how I know)! 
After you have the freezer paper completely ironed down, put a piece of heavy cardboard inside of the shirt so that no paint bleeds through on the back of the shirt. 
16341238171_c1abdcac17Now you can use a sponge brush and T-shirt paint to color in the stencil. One tip here, don’t try to do a really heavy coat. It’s better to do light coats on top of each other (no need to dry between coats) so that you don’t have unevenly painted areas.
Lay the T-shirt aside to dry for a few hours. When the paint is dry to the touch pull off the stencil (don’t forget to remove the little pieces too). As long as the shirt is dry to the touch it is ready to wear. However, you shouldn’t wash it for at least 48 hours (or for whatever length of time is listed on the fabric paint package). When you do wash it turn it inside out and wash with like colors.
I hope you have as much fun making your shirts as we did! Toodles!
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Dino-Mite T-shirts!

16151848087_5803582ec0My youngest daughter’s daycare does theme days each Wednesday. This week the theme was dinosaurs. I was super excited because Claire didn’t have anything dinosaur themed so I knew craft time was coming! Now, for those who know me you know I am a procrastinator, but this time I vowed to do better. I designed the layout in Cricut design space and cut the design out of heat transfer vinyl on my Cricut Explore. I used vinyl and a shirt that I had in my stash…Yay me!

Anyhoo, back to the story…so in my quest to fulfill one of my New Year resolutions (being timely) I finished the shirt in record time. Claire was super excited about her new shirt and was making dinosaur sounds all the way to school (’cause that’s what two year olds do). 😉

We walked into the building and got oohs and ahhs from the staff and she was grinning from ear to ear. However, what happened next was not as funny.

One of the staff members said, “Oh, I love your dinosaur shirt Claire, but dino day is tomorrow”! Wait, what!? Tomorrow!? The staff member looked at me with understanding (and some sympathy) and said, “You can just wash it and let her wear it again tomorrow”. I thought, yeah…I could, but where is the fun in that!? So…we made another top with a little more bling!16151847827_f21c57de69 16337728275_66122fff0c

P.S. Next time I do a “bling” shirt I’ll be sure to use either darker vinyl or a darker shirt so that everything “pops”!

Toodles!

 

 

 

 

Two tote bags using the Cricut Explore!

It has been a while so I figured I’d better catch you all up on what’s been going on in my world! I made quite a few handmade gifts for Christmas, but in my haste I forgot to take pictures of many of them! Arrggh! However, I did take pictures of these super cute bags that I made for my secret santa and for my child’s teacher. They were both super easy to make with my Cricut Explore (it took me less than 20 minutes to make both bags)! I used the inexpensive tote bags from Hobby Lobby and Cricut heat transfer vinyl. You just iron it on when you are finished cutting and weeding (weeding is taking away the extra vinyl you don’t want to iron onto the finished product).

The first bag was made by using an existing graphic from the Cricut subscription library and then using a rectangle and the slice feature in Cricut design space to get rid of the words and graphics I didn’t want and then typing in the new words and inserting a basketball. I L.O.V.E. the slice feature!

 

The second bag was made by selecting a graphic from the library, typing the teacher’s name, overlapping the two just a little and then welding the graphic andd the letters together. It sounds complicated, but it is literally just a few clicks to make this happen.

 

Thanks for checking out my post!

 

Toodles!