Monday, December 21, 2015

How To Make A Mixed Media Past Present and Future Personal Shrine For Journaling - #CoArtCo

Hi All, thanks for joining me in my studio.  Today's project is part of a collaboration with three other Colorado YouTube creatives.  Part 2 of the collaboration has us each making a unique and individual project with the goodie bags we received.  We each created a focal which measured no more than 4"x4" and then a goodie bag with inspiring bits and bobs.  It was so much fun to exchange with each other and see all the wonderful papers, fibers, buttons, gellie prints, mixed media painted paper, rhinestones, and on and on.  Everyone was so generous I have enough for about 15 projects!

You'll see in each of our videos how we transformed the three handmade focals we received.  From Pam Tanino I received a glittery green spinner, from Shemi a mixed media tile and from Ina a custom first name initial.  Brilliant!  I loved every piece.

With all of these lovely materials I made a personal (not necessarily religious) shrine for journaling.  This is meant to be a way to express your thought about your past, present and future.  Journal on custom made tags thoughts you have about events in your past that were wonderful experiences or that need forgiveness.  Keep what makes you strong from the past and release the rest.  Move to the present where you could journal about what you are grateful for or about those you love, just remember to "be present".  We all have dreams for the future, write yours down!  I hope you enjoy this unique way to journal.  See the tools and materials list below the video links.

See all of the videos at the links below.  As you move from one to the next, just click the first link and it will take you to the next video.

Pam Tanino:

Shemi Dixon:

Ina Solsbery:

Craft knife
Paint brushes

Various mixed media (paper, buttons, gellie prints, ribbon, lace, fibers, charms, napkins, printed words, quotes, sentiments, etc.)
Tags (optional) or other for journal cards
Box - open to three parts, you can alter a box to create a box that opens from the middle
Various paints (optional)
Glue - matte medium, Mod Podge, PVA white glue
Masking tape
Inks pads (various colors)
Ink applicator

Monday, December 14, 2015

How to Make Polymer Clay Mini Mosaics #CoArtCo Collaboration with Shemi Dixon, Ina Solsbery and Pam Tanino

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Join me as I collaborate with three other fantastic Colorado YouTube artists.  We found each other through the YouTube Creative Arts Collaboration group and have met and enjoyed each other's company as we share our love of art and YouTube.  We're doing a collaboration where we each made a special, handmade item and a goodie bag of all kinds of materials for us to use in an upcoming project.   This first video shows how each of made the handmade item and the second video will show our final project.  My project is handmade polymer clay mini mosaics using acrylic paint, Pan Pastels and pearlescent powder.I hope you enjoy this collaboration.  See the links below to Shemi Dixon, Ina Solsberry and Pam Tanino videos.  See full tools and materials list for my project below the links.

Pam Tanino

Shemi Dixon

Ina Solsberry

Pasta machine
Clay blade
Baking tile
Paint brush
Cutters - optional various sizes and types

Polymer clay - Premo! black and white, each tile takes approx. one block of clay
Pearlescent powder
Pan Pastel metallic or chalk pastels
Sealer - only if the piece will get some use/wear, otherwise not needed

Wednesday, December 9, 2015

#LoveWinterArt How to Make a Polymer Clay Santa's Reindeer Necklace

#LoveWinterArt  How to Make a Polymer Clay Santa's Reindeer Necklace.  Join me in my studio and learn to make a polymer clay holiday necklace with Rudolph the Red Nose Reindeer and Dasher and Dancer, Prancer and Vixen, Comet and Cupid, Donner and Blitzen, Santa's eight reindeer.  This polymer clay necklace is a fun way to wear the holidays.  Hope you enjoy and thanks for joining me in my studio.

Check out all the other great artists participating in the #LoveWinterArt - just search YouTube for the hashtag.

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Pasta machine
Jewelry pliers - chain nose
Cutters - round 1-1/2 and  1-1/4", various mini cutters 3/4" and 3/16" tear drop, 3/16" round, leaf cutter
Craft knife
Needle tool
Ball stylus
Extruder with medium round disk
Hollow bead maker or light bulb
Texture sheet or rough sandpaper

Clay - Premo! light blue, white, burnt umber, raw sienna, red, green, black
Genesis medium or liquid clay
Jump rings - 10mm and 5mm
Chain - approx 9"
Snowflake buttons - optional
Tiny jingle bells - optional
Toggle clasp


Monday, November 30, 2015

How to Make an Advent Charm Bracelet - Special Gift for a Christmas Baby

There's a Christmas baby due - our first grandchild.  To commemorate the event and to celebrate the Christmas season, I created an Advent Charm Bracelet for my Daughter, Emily.  Learn to make this simple bracelet with various charms and green/red holiday clusters.  Use simple jewelry making tools and materials to create the bracelet and I'll also show you how to turn a dollar store holiday tin into a personalized jewelry box to keep all the charms in.  Your loved one can open a mini package for each day leading up to Christmas and add the charm to the bracelet.  Usually there are 24 surprises in a traditional Advent calendar but in this one I added the 25th as a special charm for the baby.

You can use these techniques to make a charm bracelet to count down for any special event.  This would make a really nice gift.  Hope you enjoy and thank you for joining me in my studio.


Nail - choose a size comparable to the size of the knob
Screw Driver
Stamps - number or use number sticker s
Jewelry pliers - round and chain nose
Wire cutter
Paper punch - round or ribbon type

Tin - the size I used was approx 5" long, 4"deep and 4" wide
Mini envelopes
Charm bracelet blank
Various charms
Glass beads - green leaves, 4mm red faceted
Ribbon (to tie the envelopes closed) or could use Washi tape
Head pins - 4 per cluster
Spring rings - 1 ea for each charm and cluster
Stamping ink
Jump rings - may or may not need if the charms come with them, otherwise 1 ea per charm
Clear Command mini hooks (Optional, I used them to hold the bracelet to the top of the box
Sharpie - gold metallic

Saturday, November 28, 2015

Announcing: Try It Once Series - Doodle and Collage Mini Messenger Bags

I love all kinds of arts and crafts and have tried so many different techniques over the years.  Scrapbooking - Yep.  Painting - Yep.  Jewelry Making - Yep.  Mixed Media - Yep.  Crochet, knitting, weaving - Yep.  Sewing - Yep.  Jewelry making, metalsmithing, beading - Yep.  I enjoy working with all materials and am always on the lookout for cool new art and craft products.  Some of the things I've tried, I do over and over again.  Some are a one time thing.  So, I'm starting a series called "Try It Once" where I'll try out new )to me) or rediscovered techniques.  Some I'll use over and over again, some will be a one time thing.

In the first two projects in the series we'll use doodling and collaging techniques to create custom, personalized mini messenger bags.  I was inspired by all of the collage and art journaling YouTube videos made by my fellow Creative Art Collaboration members (hey Shemi and Ina) who do so much great mixed media, collage and journaling.  I knew I would love to explore making colorful art works but didn't know what I would do with all the paper I would end up with.  So, in keeping with my mission to create wearable art, I took the techniques and applied them to something to wear!

Learn to doodle and collage these fun bags that can be used as a mini purse, cell phone bag or gift bag.  This would be a fun project for kids as all of the materials are simple and readily available.  Use painters tape, acrylic vinyl/leather paint, and fabric paints to create a splashy and bright background along with clear stamps, Sharpies and paper to doodle and collage these personalized wearable art bags.  Find the tools and materials list below the video links.

Hope you enjoy and thanks for joining me in my studio.  If you enjoyed this video, please consider giving it a thumbs up and subscribing to my channel.  I'd also love hearing from you in the comments.  Thanks for your support, take care.

Paint brush

Mini messenger bag - Dollar Tree
Paint - acrylic vinyl/leather paint (Leather Studio - Leather & Vinyl brand by Plaid), acrylic (Golden Gold Fine)
Fabric paint - sprays, dimensional (Tulip Sprays and Metallic Dimensional fabric paints)
Paper scraps - scrapbooking paper and printed tissue paper
Mod Podge for Fabric
Tape - low tack such as blue painters tape
Sponge - cosmetic sponge or can use paint brushes
Pitt Big Brush - Burnt Umber
Sharpies - various colors (black, magenta, blue, red)

Sunday, November 15, 2015

SWD How to Make a Custom Display Box Collaboration with Cheryl Row

Thanks for joining me in this video as I take Sweet Willow Designs on the road for a collaboration with Cheryl Row, a quilt and fabric artist and fellow member of the Mile High Polymer Clay Guild.  Since our guild does regular themed swaps, we talked about ways to display and enjoy these mini art pieces.

Our collaboration shows several ways to display your small art objects using re-purposed wooden items, fabric, paper and paint to create a special, customized display.

It was great to be with Cheryl in her home studio where she creates her polymer clay art, remarkable quilts, aprons and home decor items.  Such a treat.

I hope you enjoy this video and use some of the ideas to display your pieces and not keep them in a wrinkled brown paper bag!  As always, I appreciate your comments.  If you enjoyed this video, consider giving it a thumbs up and subscribing to my channel.  Thanks for your support, take care.

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Contact Cheryl Row, Designs by Cher, at:





Thursday, November 12, 2015

#Thankful4Art Give Thanks Polymer Clay Placecards

Hi All, thanks for joining me in my studio for the #Thankful4Art YouTube Creative Arts Collaboration event.  I have a project to make a polymer clay "Give Thanks" placecard for your holiday table.  This unique placecard not only creates beautiful placecard settings for each guest, it also allows your guest to write down what they are thankful for.

This not only makes a nice table setting but also a keepsake for each of your guests if you wish.

We'll use basic polymer clay techniques and tools.  You don't need to have all the cutters, you can freehand the leaves and other design elements.

I hope you enjoy this project.

P.S.  I'm using some new video techniques including more music and close up shots of the project details.  Let me know how you enjoy these new features.