Day of the Dead Dollar Tree Wreath

I made a Day of the Dead wreath from Dollar Tree materials, including the mesh tubing. I love how it turned out but it was a big one and took literally all day to make the wreath and paint the skull. See pic of it at the end. I used this tutorial to make the big one: https://gracemonroehome.com/how-to-make-a-deco-mesh-loop-wreath/

I had a pile of left over pieces of mesh tubing so instead of throwing it away, I used it to create a smaller version. I think it turned out pretty darn cute!

I had a small Dollar Tree Day of the Dead skull painting kit I used for this one. It is approximately 3 1/2” x 5”. It comes with several craft paints, but I chose to use our Missouri Limestone Paint Company chalk-style paint colors instead. I love how vibrant they are, but many chalk paints would work, too, as well as the paints that came with it.

I also made about a 9” wreath form out of 18 gauge wire we had here.

But, if you were going to use new pkgs of the DT mesh tubing, I would get maybe 3 pkgs (1 of each color). DT also may have a heavy wire that you can mold as shown below, and you will need the 3 1/2”x5” Day of the Skull paint kit. You will also need a pkg of pipe cleaners. I chose to use black.

I cut a piece of wire about 22” long.

I formed it into a circle about 9” round, then wove another row around in and out to make it a bit more sturdyand cut off any excess. I crimped the ends so they wouldn’t be sharp.

I wanted to make sure my skull would fit inside. I had already started painting it here. I also ended up removing the little stand as I didn’t need it.

I then cut the black pipe cleaner as needed into 4 equal pieces.

I cut the wire mesh pieces into about 6” lengths. I didn’t have enough purple, so I only did 3 of them to spread out. But if I would have had enough, this is the pattern I would use.

I put 3 colors together and then made 3 loops. I used the pipe cleaner piece and put it around and twisted them tightly together.

I then started attaching them to the wire form. I alternated the cut edges so they weren’t all going on the same direction.

I stopped adding when I got to a point where the skull would fit on the side with no wire showing.

I then painted the skull with colors that would go well with the mesh tubing. I used the black already on it as an outline, painting the face and teeth white, and painted colors inside the black lines. I also painted the back black.

I sealed it front and back with Mod Podge acrylic spray and Mod Podge Pearlized spray to give it a little shimmer.

Danny drilled tiny holes, big enough for the pipe cleaner to to through on the top and bottom and I used the pipe cleaner from the last pieces of attached mesh to hold the skull in place.

And there you have it. A mini Day of the Dead wreath next to the big one I made earlier.

Sharpie Paint Pen Coffee Mugs: It does work…..but….

This has been an experiment on how to decorate Dollar Tree mugs.

I’ve decorated mugs in a couple of ways. For example, I used Dollar Tree mugs and permanent adhesive vinyl. That works great. I have washed these By Hand numerous times and they are still going strong.

But…..put them in the dishwasher and they become a mangled mess. Washing by hand is fine, but one of these days someone is going to forget and put them in the dishwasher and all will be lost.

So, I went back to researching. This time I read and watched videos on what others had done. I finally chose to follow this method on my Dollar Tree mugs.

1. Of course, the first thing to do is always clean well and then wipe down with rubbing alcohol to get rid of any oils.

2. I make stencils from contact paper, which does well as it fits so tightly to the mug and is easy to remove. For this leaf pattern (purchased from the Silhouette store) I made my stencil, put it on the mug and colored it in with a brown Sharpie paint pen. It has to be the oil-based paint pen. The regular Sharpie permanent ink one won’t work.

3. Then I let it dry for 72 hours. Once dry I put it on parchment paper on a cookie sheet in a cold oven. Set the temp. For 250 degrees F turned it on and baked the cup for 20minutes. I then turned the oven off and left it in there untouched for an hour or so, until it was cool to the touch.

My mug turned out great. I experimented with it and washed it with hot soap and water by hand several times. It came out perfect every time! Yay! A success for creating painted mugs to hand wash!

But! What if I forgot or if someone buys a mug from me and they forget I said to hand wash?

So, now it was time to possibly say goodbye to my cute fall coffee mug as it might get ruined in the dishwasher.

I did make sure I put it in the top rack. When it came out, it was still in one piece and looked great. However, a change has taken place.

The leaf was now lighter, the yellow tones looked gray and the mug itself took on a creamier color.

It still looks great! I’m happy it is not ruined…but…I was a little disappointed in the color change.

I did learn that if I do want to sell these, I will need to run them through the dishwasher before I take a photo due to the color change.

Here’s a before and after. It is a noticeable difference.

Now, I’m going to be trying something else. I learned, in my research, that Mod Podge makes a dishwasher safe sealer. I’m going to try that next and will let you know what happens.

Be watching this space. Also, be sure to follow my blog to be notified when I post something new!

The Flowers of Summer Forever in Bloom

Sometimes I will do anything to keep from cleaning the house…..so I went in search of projects on Pinterest.

One that caught my eye was using flowers to create art. I kept reading and knew I had to try this. it involved pounding the flowers with a hammer. 😳

Yes, my vase is a black antique doorknob painted a navy blue and distressed. The flowers are a type of miniature petunia called Millionbells.

I actually saw two different tutorials. One was to use watercolor paper and wax paper. The other was to use a piece of fabric and tape. They used a white paper-like tape. The only thing I had was wax paper and packing tape. And no watercolor paper or fabric that would work.

I started looking around and my eyes fell on some storage boxes I bought at Dollar Tree. Those collapsible fabric type ones. I’m not sure they are exactly fabric, but I figured they would work to practice with. I didn’t have white tape, but I did have some packing tape, so I thought I’d try it, too.

The storage container had two different weights of material, so I thought I would try both.

I have to say straight up, my practice became art. I am so amazed! I wish I had known about this at the beginning of summer. Anyway….on with the tutorial.

I gathered my supplies, including a hammer.

For my first try I used wax paper, the lighter weight material, and a bunch of flowers and stems.

I covered the flowers with the waxed paper and turned it over so I would be pounding on the material itself.

When finished, I removed the wax paper and the flowers and let it dry. It was like a beautiful, muted watercolor.

I then used the heavier material and this time used the packing tape and taped the flowers to material, trying to make sure the flower head was face down as much as possible. I then turned it over and started pounding again. I pounded until it looked like I got most of the flowers and stem.

The photo above shows what it looked like when I turned it back over and started removing the tape. Beautiful!

Shiny tile from Home Depot

So then I had to figure out what to do with them. I cut around the flowers on the first one and decoupaged it to a tile. When dry I sprayed it with a couple of coats of spray matte lacquer. I can display it or use it as a coaster. For the other one, I framed it in a vintage frame I had. It looks like it has always been in that frame. It looks so vintage!

Close up of the framed print
Close up of the tiled print

My house is still not cleaned, but now my curiosity is satisfied, I am ready to tackle it ….. tomorrow.

Decoupage Napkins in a Faux Galvanized Tin Holder

Here are the steps I took to create the coasters:

1. I purchased these stone tiles as part of a package at Home Depot. I cleaned the them thoroughly.

2. I usually paint the tops and sides with our Missouri Limestone Paint Company chalk-style paint in “January” as white paint will really help the print stand out. But these coasters were already white on one side so I skipped this step.

3. I chose areas of the napkin that would look good centered on the tiles and cut them a little bigger than the coaster. I peeled off the two white layers of the napkin so that I was left with only the printed part. Sometimes napkins will only have one white layer.

4. For the decoupage medium, I used Mod Podge on this set. I applied a layer over the white paint and while still wet I applied the napkin. I used a piece of plastic wrap to press the napkin into the stone, making sure I had no bubbles.this plastic wrap helps to keep the napkin from sticking to my fingers.

5. Once dry, I used 220 sandpaper to sand the edges.

6. I then used 2 coats of Rustoleum spray lacquer on the tops and sides to seal the napkin. Using lacquer will not reactivate the poly, so no bubbles formed.

I used a painting technique to create a faux galvanized tin look to a plain black coaster holder.

You can see how I did this technique in another blog post, found here.

I enjoyed doing this technique so much I have used it on a variety of items.

Paint a Pair of Leather Shoes in Less Than an Hour

I am not a newbie when it comes to painting shoes with chalk-style paint, specifically the brand we own and produce “Missouri Limestone Paint Company”. I’ve painted shoes made of quality leather as well as those that are from cheap man-made materials. Then I’ve worn the heck out of them. This latest pair I painted two coats and applied two coats of salve – all in less than an hour.

Oh my! These look ready for the trash! But they are so comfortable! Especially when I’m on my feet painting, apparently. Lol
But no more painting in this beautiful pair of shoes! They look brand new, don’t they?

Would you like to know how I did it? First, a sneak peek to see the transformation in progress.

I started out by cleaning the shoes well with Windex. This is my go to cleaner for many things I paint.

All the added color on this pair is from our chalk-style paint. This paint is on there for good, trust me. Cleaning didn’t remove it, nor could I scratch it off. I didn’t want to sand it or use chemicals on it, so…. I painted over it. 😏

Missouri Limestone Paint Company chalk-style paint Color: Gray Goose
I painted the elastic on the strap, too.
I even painted the soles!

I also know from experience, our paint does very well on rubber. I painted a Rubbermaid mailbox several years ago….no sealer….and it still looks brand new today. So, I also painted the soles of this pair of shoes, but did not seal them.

Needs a second coat of paint

I painted the first coat. It dried quickly, but so also helped it along with a hair dryer. You can see the reddish look coming through along with the spots from the original paint splatters. But look! No brush strokes! Our paint (when applied in thin coats), does not leave brush strokes.

2nd coat covered well

It is time to apply the salve. I love Wise Owl Salve and keep it on hand for projects like this.

Can you tell which shoe has had the Wise Owl Salve applied? If you said the left one, you are correct!

As you can see, I applied the Wise Owl salve on the left shoe so you can see what a difference it makes.

Wow, right?

I applied the first coat of salve and buffed it. Then, I applied a light second coat and just rubbed it in, but did not buff. Remember, I DID NOT use the salve on the soles.

And there you have it! Another pair of shoes given a new life. I promise not to paint in these! I will periodically apply another coat of salve and buff it in.

A Faux Galvanized Tin Hanging Pendant Light

https://sharsumpaint.com/2020/08/06/a-faux-galvanized-tin-hanging-pendant-light/

I found a great tutorial for creating faux galvanized tin using paint. I repurposed this brass plated hanging pendant light and it looks like the real thing.

The tutorial shows it on a cardboard box. Since I was painting on metal, I used a spray primer first.

https://shellyhickox.blogspot.com/2015/04/decoart-media-faux-galvanized-canisters.html?m=1

This is what I did:

1. Took the light apart and scuffed up the pieces. Cleaned well.

2. Sprayed all pieces with primer.

3. Painted with Metallic Silver waterbased paint. I put a small amount in plastic cup and painted out of it. I even painted the cord.

4. Added a little Medium gray color chalk-style paint to the metallic, stirred it in, and using a piece of natural sponge, I dabbed it on each piece. I used our brand we own and produce: Missouri Limestone Paint Company.

5. Then I added a little white and dabbed again all over.

6. Then I added some black and dabbed again.

7. Finished by dabbing a little silver metallic with a brush, making sure there wasn’t much paint on the brush.

8. Sealed with Wise Owl Salve.

Repurposing a Faded Rubber Mat

I have been seeing people painting these worn out rubber mats. I even have one of my own I’ve been planning on painting. But mine was always black with a geometric design so I hadn’t been that motivated yet. I’m sure it will stand out, though, once painted with beautiful colors.

But then, this week, I found two faded flower ones for $1 each at a yard sale and I snatched them up!

We also picked up a couple of grandkids for the weekend so mom and dad could celebrate their anniversary. While the grands were content watching TV and playing on their devices, I thought I would just start on one to see what it was like. I am very impressed! They paint up great and are easy to paint.

I used our brand of chalk-style paint, Missouri Limestone Paint Company, in a variety of colors. I know rubber usually does well outside curing without sealing, but because this will get walked on a lot, I will seal it. I am leaning toward using a matte spray lacquer.

I was working on it on the dining room floor and one of my grandsons came over to see what I was doing. He wanted to help me and so he did. He’s not even in Kindergarten yet and he works so carefully. He is really a good painter. He also wanted to make a how-to video like his cousins had done so he has videos here, too. Of course, I would lose my helper until I changed colors. Then he’d be back again.

When we finished, he wanted to show how painting tired him out. Lol

Not only is he a good painter, he’s a comedian, too. 😂🥰

Here is the 2nd one. I used jewel tone colors on it. Sure missed having my little helper here as I worked on it.