Tag Archives: arts and crafts

Watercolor Painting Class

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Watercolor Painting Class

Hello!! This past Saturday I took a really fun watercolor painting class at the Quirk Cultural Center with my mom and sister. The class was led by the wonderful Ana-Joel of Falcon Grove Studio and she taught us how to paint different herbs inspired by an English country garden. To begin, Ana showed us the different techniques to paint rosemary, sage, mint, and basil and then we got to create our own masterpieces:

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My mom, sister, and I would definitely not fall under the category of artistically skilled and have never painted with watercolor before. However, we all jumped at the opportunity to take this class because it was local and seemed like something we could enjoy together. I am so glad that we did and left the class with work that we were proud of and an eagerness to take more classes with Ana again.

Ana is an amazing local artist who founded Falcon Grove Studio during the pandemic to help promote a feeling of safety and wellness at home through art. She is so gifted, kind, and genuine and we all felt lucky to have her as our teacher. Her words inspired each of the students in the class and I loved how she told us that art is special because it’s the way your own body moves to create something. As someone who isn’t good at art, it was so encouraging to hear that you are still making something meaningful.

As I said, I had never painted watercolor before and I had a blast. It was such a unique experience and I was blown away by this whole world that I knew existed but never tried for myself. Ana taught us how to mix colors and use the water to enhance our art and it was so cool to see colors transform from something as simple as adding a touch of yellow or red and a “juicy brush” loaded with water.

For my project, I chose to paint basil and sage and I couldn’t be more pleased with how they turned out. Are they museum level works of art? No way lol. BUT, I thought that it was a pretty damn good first try. Not only did I feel proud of what I painted but I also felt excited to try painting more and I think that definitely qualifies as a GREAT SUCCESS (Borat voice).

Ana offers a variety of different courses in person and online and I simply cannot wait to work with her again. I also have ideas swirling in my head for some commissioned pieces by her! Please check out her social media and Etsy page at the following and support this fabulous local artist:

What is your favorite medium of art? Have you ever taken any art classes before? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

Tips For Boosting Your Creative Confidence

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Tips For Boosting Your Creative Confidence

Do you often feel like you’re not good enough? Do you feel like your work is never good enough? If so, you’re not alone. Many people struggle with feelings of self doubt and insecurity when it comes to their creative work. However, there are things that you can do to boost your confidence and improve your creative output. In this blog post, we will discuss some tips for boosting your creative confidence:

Believe In Yourself:

This may seem obvious, but it’s important to remember that you are the only one who can control your self belief. If you don’t believe in yourself, no one else will. Remember that you can do great things and don’t be afraid to put yourself out there. Think about how you’ve come this far and all of the things you’ve achieved.

Believing in yourself is the first and most important step to taking control of your creative confidence. You are the only one who can make yourself believe that you are good enough and that your work is worth putting out there. So, start by convincing yourself that you can do it!

Be prepared:

One of the best ways to boost your confidence is to be prepared. It will show in your work if you know what you’re doing and you’re confident in your abilities. Make sure that you take the time to research and plan before you start working on a project. This way, you’ll have a clear vision of what you want to achieve and you’ll be less likely to second guess yourself.

Take Risks:

To grow and improve, you need to be willing to take risks. You’ll never progress if you’re too afraid to try new things or step outside of your comfort zone. Sometimes, the best way to learn is by trial and error. The risks that work will create a significant confidence boost that you can carry into future projects. Experimentation will help you learn and expand your creative intuition. A good example of this is Michael Treco, who does various art exhibits following his intuition.

Maintain A High Level Of Output:

You can’t be confident in your work if you’re not producing any! One of the best ways to boost your creative confidence is to maintain a high output level. Make sure that you’re regularly creating new work and don’t be afraid to share it with the world. The more you create, the more confident you’ll become in your abilities.

Confidence in your own creative ability takes time to nurture and that’s okay. Use the tips above to help jump start the process so you can be your best creative self.

Featured Image By: Pexels

Paint By Numbers Misfortune

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Paint By Numbers Misfortune

Hello! My best friend, Lea, gifted me with everything that I needed for my own personal wine and paint night for my birthday. She got me a paint by numbers kit, which I have heard of before but never tried and was eager to give it a shot. This past weekend, I decided that I would get started on my project before a friend showed up for a game night. Unfortunately, it was way harder than I could have ever imagined:

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After unboxing the paint by numbers kit, I was surprised by how difficult it looked but was hopeful that I would be able to complete it. The kit included the canvas, three paint brushes of various sizes, numbered paints, and supplies for hanging it up. With everything that I needed provided, I was still under the impression that once I got the hang of it, it would be easy. That was, however, far from the case.

I had a few hours to kill and I thought that I would start with the biggest task on the canvas first, painting the background and small details white. I began working on one of the vases and even with the smallest paint brush available, I was getting paint in the wrong places and covering up numbers I would need later left and right. After the epic failure of attempting one color on a vase, I started painting the background because that should be easy, right?

WRONG!!!!

The biggest paint brush that the kit had was hardly making a dent in the vast spaces on the canvas that needed covered up. Not to mention that you had to perfectly outline the vases and flowers with the white paint too. I switched back and forth between the biggest and smallest brush to accomplish this and was constantly covering up other spaces that needed painted. You seriously almost needed a toothpick small brush to get into all of the tiny nooks and crannies and the smallest brush was way too big for the task.

Of course, I am so thankful to Lea for her super thoughtful gift but I can’t say that this project is one that I plan on finishing. After my first effort, I essentially shot myself in the foot since so many areas got painted over. I am sure that other easier paint by numbers kits are a lot of fun and would happily try one of them. I just don’t have the surgeon steady hands to successfully complete this canvas!

Have you tried a paint by numbers kit before? What did you think of it? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

Best Friend Birthday Gift

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Best Friend Birthday Gift

Hello! I had a blast celebrating my birthday last week and had plans to hang out with people almost every night. Needless to say, I am exhausted and am done socializing for the next couple of weeks lol! On Friday, my best friend and her husband came over for a game night and I was gifted with this super thoughtful prezzie from Lea:

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Lea and I have been best friends since freshman year of high school, which is fourteen years of celebrating birthdays and holidays together. We absolutely love to spoil each other for special occasions and it has been that way for as long as I can remember. For my birthday, Lea outdid herself with a paint by numbers kit and a delicious looking bottle of blueberry moscato. Yum!

I have heard of paint by numbers projects before but have never tried one and I can’t wait. It looks like such fun and is a delightful nod to the many craft nights that Lea and I have shared together. In fact, several of the canvases on my apartment’s art wall are from said best friend craft nights and I can’t wait to complete and hang up my new painting… If it turns out good lol. And, of course, the bottle of wine is the perfect compliment to make it a wine and paint night – which we have also participated in together! 😀

Lea is one of the most incredible people and we have been there for each other through thick and thin. Boyfriends, college, new jobs, and marriage are all things that we have tackled together and I wouldn’t want anyone else by my side. Fourteen birthdays are almost officially in the books after her special day in late August and I can’t wait for fourteen more. I love you!!!

How long have you and your best friend been friends for? Have you ever tried a paint by numbers kit before? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

 

Completed Art Wall!

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Completed Art Wall!

Hello! At mine and Johnny’s old apartment, I had a vision of an art wall going up the staircase. It never fully came to fruition because I ran out of Command strips, never bothered to get more, and didn’t want to put nails in the wall to hang things up with. Fast forward into our new digs and I began the art wall project once more with the full intention of completing it. And, I am pleased to say that it is finally done with Johnny’s help! It only took about three and a half years but, hey, better late than never:

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Johnny and I have been working hard in the new apartment to prepare for our housewarming/birthaversary party and have been diligently checking things off of our to do list. Completing the art wall was a huge win because it cleared up lots of space where all of the pictures you see above were just sitting there. In fact, this masterpiece allowed us to fully move the furniture we wanted to put in the game room, making us about eighty percent done with our unpacking.

I was so tickled that Johnny helped me finish this project that I started and I could not have done it without him. It also went by much quicker than when I was trying to hang everything up by myself! Johnny was my handy helper and he basically did everything, which was very nice for me. All I did was come up with the layout I wanted and he did the rest. What a guy!

I am beyond thrilled with how our art wall turned out and it is exactly what I had pictured in my head. I catch myself admiring our effort constantly when I’m at home and I am so happy to have our art collection on display. Thanks to Goodwill hauls, crafting nights with my bestie, and the pieces that Johnny contributed, we have a wide assortment for all of our guests to see. My personal favorite? The autographed picture of Randy and Mr. Lahey from Trailer Park Boys! Can you find it?

What kind of art work do you have hanging up at home? What is your favorite thing on my art wall? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

Turning Your Art Hobby Into A Side Hustle

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Turning Your Art Hobby Into A Side Hustle

So you’re looking for a side hustle, and you love art. Or, perhaps, you need to find ways to inject more creativity into your life while also bringing in some money. If either of those statements rings true, then maybe an arts and crafts side hustle could give you the creative outlet you’re looking for while also helping you create a financial plan for the future. Here are five ways that you can turn your passion into a cash cow side hustle:

Create And Sell Digital Art:

This is one of the most straightforward arts and crafts side hustles to start. You don’t need to buy any fancy equipment to create digital art, and you can sell it online to clients from anywhere in the world. In fact, there are tons of digital art marketplaces out there, including Etsy, Zazzle, and Society6. You can also take your digital art a step further by creating video tutorials that show your clients how they can use their new products. This not only allows you to get some extra content out there but also gives your clients added value.

Turn Your Art Into Home Decor:

If you create more traditional art, you can still sell it to customers as home decor. Frame Your Art allows you to list your art pieces for sale online and each frame comes with a free print of your art. You can also partner with local shops that sell home decor to display your framed art in their stores or sell your art on Amazon through the Merch by Amazon program. The catch is that you’ll have to print it yourself (or outsource it to a company), box it, and ship it out to customers. But if you have the time, this is a great way to instantly create passive income from your art.

If you make art yourself, stock up on supplies from King’s printmaking supplies and get to creating. It’s an easy way to turn your hobby into a side hustle.

Start An Etsy Store:

Art is a great way to keep yourself busy. It can also make you money and Etsy has become a go-to marketplace for handmade goods. There are plenty of ways for artists to sell their artwork and crafts to the public. However, if you want to start an Etsy store as a side hustle, make sure that you’re abiding by the company’s guidelines.

If you’re a creative person, chances are you have plenty of ideas for new products to sell. You can either create your own designs or source items from other designers. No matter what, you’ll need to make sure that your product is high quality. People tend to be very selective when purchasing handmade items. Take the time to do things right so you don’t have to worry about returns or poor reviews on your page.

Create Handmade Jewelry:

If you love to make jewelry but don’t want to sell your creations online, you can still make money with them as a side hustle. You can turn your jewelry-making hobby into a profit-making business by hosting small craft fairs in your neighborhood. Just make sure that you have permission to sell goods on public property.

In addition to craft fairs, you can also sell your goods online through marketplaces like Etsy, Amazon Handmade, and ArtFire. Keep in mind that this side hustle is more than just creating jewelry. You’ll need to set up your booth or display, attend events, and promote your business. You can also sell your jewelry at local shops. This allows you to get more visibility for your products, and you may even be able to negotiate a percentage of the sales.

Open A Print Shop:

Are you a Photoshop pro? If so, you can use your skills to create all sorts of designs for clients. Many companies outsource their printing to individuals who have the necessary software and knowledge to create the perfect design. You can find these jobs on sites like Upwork and PeoplePerHour.

There are also online print shops that allow you to design customizable products such as T-shirts, posters, tote bags, and more. First, you’ll need to create a shop through the website and upload your designs. You usually have the option to use a template or you can upload your own designs. Once you have the shop up and running, all you have to do is wait for customers to order your products.

If you have a passion for arts and crafts and are looking for some extra cash, a side hustle will be just right for you. How cool will it be to see other people enjoying your one of a kind pieces?!

Featured Image By: Jess Bailey Designs via Pexels

Moving On Up: Art Wall

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Moving On Up: Art Wall

Hello! This past Wednesday, I was hanging out at home while Johnny was at band practice and wanted to spend the evening relaxing instead of unpacking. That changed tunes pretty quickly, though, because of an unfortunate mishap with the video game I was playing. Basically, I accidentally loaded a previous save point and everything I did after that point got deleted. I was SO upset!!

Rather than wallow in my frustration, I decided to get started on a new unpacking project: Creating an art wall. It’s looking very nice so far, if I do say so myself:

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^^^ There’s still a ways to go but it’s getting there!

Between an endless supply of paintings from Goodwill, crafts with my bestie, and Johnny’s own artwork collection, I had a lot to work with for my art wall. This was a project that I had wanted to do in my old apartment and just never got around to finishing it… Probably because I never bought more Command strips to hang the paintings with lol. Johnny had actually bought several packs of them during his last trip to Walmart, which is how this first go at the art wall was possible.

The end result will have artwork hanging up all the way along the stairs and it is going to look so cool! I’m really happy with how it’s looking so far, though, and it was the perfect project to sink my teeth into after an epic gaming failure. The concentration it took to hang everything just so definitely kept my mind off of three hours of Paper Mario getting lost in oblivion!

Progress with unpacking has been pretty good but it has slowed down because we need more shelving for a lot of the remainders. In fact, I was feeling a bit down about it and this project helped perk me up and kicked my motivation back into high gear – especially with our housewarming/birthaversary party right around the corner. 😀

Although my project isn’t complete yet, I can already picture the end result and I can’t wait to show all of you. This is how I always wanted the staircase in my old apartment to look and it feels good for that vision to finally come to life!

What have you been crafting lately? Have you been working on any home decor projects? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

5 Tips For Creating The Perfect Jack-O-Lantern

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5 Tips For Creating The Perfect Jack-O-Lantern

Before we visit a pumpkin patch or farm, we might want to brush up on our pumpkin decorating skills. A well decorated front yard for Halloween is a joy for children and adults alike so why not go all out? If you are looking for an activity that extends beyond choosing a pumpkin and decorating it, which will happen too, then click here. Let’s get started:

Select the Right Pumpkin:

A thorough inspection of the pumpkin should include checking for soft spots. This is to make sure that you do not end up choosing a pumpkin that has already begun to spoil. Also avoid pumpkins with deep ridges and go for a smooth-surfaced one. At pumpkin farms, there will be plenty of choices as opposed to you trying to pick the best among limited options within a grocery store, when customers have already bought the best ones.

The design that you have in mind should also dictate the pumpkin that you choose. In other words, do you need a short and round pumpkin or one that is skinnier and taller in terms of its shape? Know in advance what you are looking for.

Prepare Your Design Before Applying to the Pumpkin:

Draw out your design and then use tracing paper to transfer it onto the pumpkin. This can be a design that you have approved yourself or that has been checked with someone else first. However, it is nice to surprise people by not showing them your design until it is carved on your finished pumpkin.

With your design, think beyond just a traditional triangular face and consider creating other Halloween symbols such as bats, stars, or moons. More adventurous still, you could attempt a graveyard scene or a spooky forest. If designing your pumpkin further down the line, perhaps at Thanksgiving in November, then think about alternative creations of say puppies, cats, or rabbits. Children tend to prefer animals because of their familiarity and the cute factor.

Know How to Hold Your Pumpkin:

It is a good idea to hold the pumpkin in your lap as you are carving it. This is the most supportive and safest way to carve a pumpkin. Have the right equipment of a serrated kitchen knife for the main carving and a small saw for the more intricate parts of the design.

Consider Shaving:

We are not talking shaving your legs or facial hair, but the alternative of not cutting right through the pumpkin with every stroke. Instead, sometimes deciding to just scrape pieces of pumpkin away to allow just enough light to glow through your open-design creations. It is always important to be patient when creating any pumpkin design. The best designs have taken much thought and a good deal of carving, and your other technique of shaving should make for a design that is more dynamic than it might otherwise have been.

Incorporating Scraps Within the Design:

Do not waste anything because you can incorporate your scraps or discarded pieces of pumpkin within your design. The ones that you do not intend to cook, that is. For example, you could make hair, a tongue, a pipe, or a chimney from these spare pieces. This will make your pumpkin into more of a character with a personality, a more sophisticated structure, or make it more three dimensional in form. You can be as artistic as you like, creating something for your pumpkin that merely started as a basic idea on paper. Think as creatively about your scraps as you do about the main part of your creation.

Turn your ordinary pumpkin into something extraordinary with the tips above and you will delight your whole neighborhood with your creation!

Self Care Hobbies That Can Be Done From Home

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Self Care Hobbies That Can Be Done From Home

Hobbies that can be done from home are so much more likely to be practiced often. And if they are much more likely to happen, then it can be such a good thing for your self care and mental health. Looking after yourself and finding something that you love to do, outside of work or school is important. So with that in mind, here are some hobbies that you can try from home to help you relax. Which are you going to try first?

Knitting:

Knitting is a wonderful hobby to try. The reason being, is that it is not only a mindful and relaxing activity, but it also gives you an end result. Want to create a scarf or make something for your friend’s new baby? Then get knitting. Seeing that you have created something by yourself can be a real confidence boost.

Painting:

Painting is something that can be really relaxing and mindful, and you don’t need very much equipment to get you started. You can go wherever your imagination takes you or take inspiration from your favorite artist or pieces of artwork. You could look here for some inspiration: https://davidhartgalleries.com.au/pro-hart/. You could choose paint, acrylics, watercolors, chalks, or other mediums, it is all about being creative and making it up as you go.

Baking Bread:

Another hobby that is practical, as you get something good to eat at the end of it, but that is calming and relaxing at the same time. Baking bread in a traditional way, such as by kneading the dough by hand and waiting for it to rise can be therapeutic and so, so rewarding. You can get creative with the types of bread and the flavors like sourdough, which will need a starter, as stated here: https://feastingathome.com/sourdough-starter/. So there are a lot of options for you to play around with.

Reading:

If you don’t think that you have much time for reading, then you might not have been putting as much emphasis on it as you have in the past. Reading can be pure escapism, as well as a way to learn new things. If you want to read more, then block out the time in your schedule and it will make sure that it happens.

LEGO:

Building with LEGO is not just for kids! You can get proper sets and kits to create something as it is meant to be or you can use what you have to create anything else that you can imagine. Some kits can take a while to build, so it can be a real labor of love. The perfect solution when you’re looking for something to do to relax at the end of the day.

Everyone needs a hobby to enjoy so why not try some of these ideas? Have fun!

Featured Image By: Pixabay

Keep Yourself Busy With These Ideas

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Keep Yourself Busy With These Ideas

Hi there! Idle hands are the devil’s play thing or however that saying goes and, if you’re like me, then you might like to keep your hands busy too. There are so many amazing things that can be created with our own two hands from building with LEGO to constructing a house! Today, we are going to look at a few ideas that will definitely keep your hands busy when you are feeling fidgety or need to destress. Let’s get to it:

Build Something New:

People who are gifted in the art of construction, wood working, and welding simply blow me away and it is an awesome skill to continue to practice if you are so inclined. Being able to make something out of nothing must be so satisfying and is a great way to get creative as well as decompress. Before starting your next project, make sure you have all of the proper building supplies and tools and see what magic you can work to make it happen!

LEGO:

So maybe actual construction isn’t your thing and that’s okay! But have you ever tried building with LEGO bricks, instead? My husband and I absolutely love to build with LEGO and are very much looking forward to receiving our Seinfeld set in the mail any day now. Building with LEGO takes time, focus, and a lot of imagination if you are not building an actual set. It is a great way to break up the monotony of your regularly scheduled programming as you spend some time building something brick by brick. Be sure to check out the competition show, LEGO Masters, too because it is a hoot. 😀

Puzzles:

I really enjoy putting puzzles together and there is nothing better than when you get into a good flow and the pieces just seem to come together themselves. While I couldn’t imagine doing anything beyond a five hundred piece puzzle, some people are gifted enough to put together one thousand plus puzzle pieces! Put on your favorite tunes and see how much puzzle progress you can make in one sitting.

Arts & Crafts:

Knitting, crochet, needlepoint, and sewing are all fabulous skills to have and it can be done anywhere! You can dream up something knew while you’re killing time on a long car, train, or plane ride or just hanging out at home and watching a movie. I live for the scarf that my mom knitted for me and can’t wait for the weather to cool down so I can wear it once again!

Creating something new is exciting, fulfilling, and can be done with your own two hands! What will you make today?