Tuesday, November 22

Plastic bangle refurbish

It's a trend these days -silk thread jewellery. After the craze for terracotta and polymer clay jewellery died down, it's been a clamour for the threads. I see umpteen posts on requests for silk thread jewellery and catalogue sales on Facebook shopping groups, again for silk thread jewellery. I understand that fashion is a matter of seasons. It changes before you know it. But it would do so much good if we kept our whims for jewellery types - terracotta, paper-quill, seed-jewellery, and the likes, diversified! Trust me it would go a long way in helping the artists and artisans who put their souls into making beautiful pieces.

I am not a fan of silk. But I love the idea of thread transforming any item into a beautiful work of art. It is why I chose to give a new look to a plastic bangle that I have around home. All that you need to transform it, is some handful of patience with embroidery thread and the bangle.

Here is a speedy method to get your own bracelet or bangle that dazzles as a result, before that party you want to rock at. This could also work well for festival-wear and your little one's school performances when you are left scrambling for those matching accessories that go with the right costumes. Alternatively, gift it to people you love. There's nothing to match that love poured into your effort for gifting.

For this project, you need:

-plastic bangles

-a pair of scissors

-embroidery or silk thread


-sticker bindis of rhinestones

Roll the thread over the bangle such that it falls along in regular lines along each other.

Towards the end, knot the ends and glue it towards the inside so that it does not protrude on the outer side of the bangle. That way, it gets hidden when you wear it will be on your hand-side.

Embellish using the sticker bindis using craft glue.


Tuesday, November 15

As real as could get: Clay flowers to decorate your home

Decorating a home is a challenge, with the thousands of choices available in the market. Have you felt crippled when you walk into that megastore only to find you did not get the vases and cloth flowers of your choice?

When my dear friend Sankgetha Sripathy introduced me to the super talented Athiya Nasreen's blog, I had reason to feel astounded. While a whole lot of crafters have been into terracotta and polymer clay jewellery sets in a trillion ways, she has chosen to make polymer clay flowers.

Athiya's runs the Facebook page Maple Mixed Media. Her clay flowers in their vases look straight out of a beautiful Zen garden. She used air dry Thai clay and a bunch of paints. The advantage with air dry clay unlike polymer clay and terracotta is that you do not need to bake it.

Can you actually believe these are not real flowers but made with clay and coloured? And before you get scared of their ornate detailing, Athiya has given a simplified picture tutorial that she published on her blog recently. Here is a big shout out to Athiya for sharing her work with Imprints Handmade.

What you need for the project:

 -- Oil colours in four colours - Crimson red, Golden yellow, Green and Orange

-- Rose flower veiners ( you get them in the market), Rose leaf veiners and Rose flower cutters

-- air dry clay in white

-- craft glue

-- a small foam ball

-- Ball tool, poking tool and frilling tool (they are clay craft tools available in the market)

-- pasta machine and flower vase

-- a fruit tray to help curve rose petals into shape

For a start, Athiya says you need to mix two parts orange and one part yellow colour to get a good blend of golden yellow.

Athiya says the next step is to place this clay between two transparent plastic sheets and flatten it using the pasta machine. After  this, you will need to use a rose petal cutter to cut out petals and use the veiner to create the petal and leaf texture.

Next step, use a fruit tray or any curvy bowl, to give these petals their spherical curve.

You will next need to start pasting the petals around the foam ball on a wire/thin stick.

The petals that you have used the veiner on you may paste for the outer layers.

Use your fingers to give curves and slightly roll the edges of the clay rose. Remember that when you do this, the wire meant for the stalk should stay intact. Give this rose flower a painted finish with shades of orange.

Use the rose leaf cutter and cut out stalk pieces. Roll these on to the stalk.

The next step is to create a separate bud, to give it the real look.

Use the leaf cutter and veiner to make the leaves, and fix them to the wire.

Paint them using shades of brown.

Fix this set to the main rose flower stalk. And add the bud to the set.

Fix a bunch of these flowers and place in a vase. Your super real looking rose flowers are ready. And they stay colourful for a long time. Check out Athiya's blog http://athiya.blogspot.in for more of her tutorials. She has incredible craft items one can learn from.

Pictures Courtesy: Athiya Nasreen

Content, re-used with permission from Athiya.

For permission to re-use from this blog, write to: radicreative@gmail.com

Tuesday, November 1

Art with vintage cassette

Remember that time when music to our ears came in the form of little plastic pieces with a tape inside them, to be inserted into a box called the cassette player? That was long before floppy discs and CDs made their way into our lives. Thousands of families still have them in their household storage or lying around, sometimes getting discarded and sometimes crying away in some corner of a shelf. 

I chanced upon a cassette last week and it brought back memories of the hundreds of hours my father and we sisters spent listening to songs - devotional, film, classic and modern. You can turn these cassettes into souvenir art, or simply reuse and repurpose them in some craft. 

I opted for a simple piece of art. You need not make something similar, just try using a cassette in different ways around home.

What you need for this project:

-- acrylic or craft paint in two colours

-- an old cassette or cassette tape

-- paint brushes, one to apply, in size 10, and another with soft bristles in size 2

-- a tissue paper or cloth

-- glue gun

-- an A4 size cardstock in plain colour (I chose the paints and cardstock in earthy tones)

-- optional, is a cup of water, but a squeeze surface for paints is essential

Wipe the cassette tape clean. You will notice there is a sticker in place to mark the contents of the cassette. Make use of it. Read on how.

I painted on the sticker with the brick red paint that I had. You can opt for any colours, even think of making faces on top of these cassettes. Do not aim to be perfect at it.

On a whim, I decided to draw eye-lashes over the two holes that hold its tape. For this I used white colour paint.

And an arch to form its mouth.

The next step was to place it over the cardstock and figure out a way to make it look, good.

My cardboard colour was Camp Green, again an earthy tone. Instead of placing it straight, it helped give it a playful feel by tilting it. I wrote the word `Nostalgia' on it.

All I had to do was, to draw some bubble clouds and place the cassette over a big cloud.

You will need to fix the cassette tape on to the cardstock. I have left it at this for now, but will think of framing it soon.

Make sure you get thick cardstock. You can also stick this up a door or a wall.

Enjoy your memories.

Pics courtesy: Radhika M B

Write to: radicreative@gmail.com for permissions