Clay: It Molds With Your Hands.

March 25, 2012 § 6 Comments

I recently stumbled upon a huge collection of high grade oven-bake clay (YES!) on sale (YEESSS!!). You guys have no idea how much I like working with clay. As a child I’ve interacted with Play-Doh and other alternatives and I think most kids did too. Even later on when I enrolled in summer art classes; I interacted with putty erasers (as shown below).

I guess it’s not really a surprise for me to use something like clay during an art class but it was definitely a mistake for me to use that type of eraser in school. As you can imagine, it didn’t help me at all academically speaking. If any of you have actually been fortunate enough to have an awesome eraser like that, you would know how distracting it is. Bottom line is that clay has a total nostalgic factor.

I actually have a few projects I’ve wanted to do for a long time now, but I just never had clay at hand. So the first one is this awesome Wands in Harry Potter Style by username Sigrunelise at Cut Out + Keep. I know It says that it uses hot glue instead of clay, but I just like how yielding putty is compared to hot glue and that will allow anybody the capability to shape intricate designs. Though it wouldn’t be as pliable as the wood and hot glue combo(but that’s a risk I want to take).

Second on the list is also from Cut Out + Keep and is this super simple Polymer Buttons posted by user Creativemind. Though I like bottons probably more than the next guy, I like this project more because of how clay can be used to be an accent to a much bigger project. This project shows that clay doesn’t always have to be the center piece to a project but just a minor detail.

Lastly is the best book mark I have ever seen… of all time. The Ruby Slippers/ Wicked Witch Of the East Bookmark by Kira Nichols who runs Oops, I Craft My Pants( I just love that title). She actually sells her bookmarks on her Etsy if you’re too lazy to make your own( and to support artists and their crafts, of course), but the downside is that, it’s pretty much sold out every time she restocks(That’s how amazing it is). There actually is no tutorial for the bookmark and I actually was planning on making one, but lets be honest, it’s not a very complex project. The details might take some time, but it’s still not that difficult to imagine the procedure behind it.

So go ahead and go to your local craft-store and pick up some clay and create something.

4 Steps to DIYing.

March 11, 2012 § 2 Comments

Let’s make this a DIY year. If you haven’t noticed, there is a green movement that focuses on reusing items. Those items could be something that’s been left in the back of your closet, garage or workshop, and it might even be something previously owned. If you’ve been one of those people who has been oblivious or just a hoarder sentimental person, then these tips are perfect for you to join the movement and at the same time, make the most out of your time, save money, and get inspired along the way.

1. Get inspired.

Inspiration is where it all starts (duh!). So collect inspiration whether from a blog, from people on the streets, or a local café you enjoy lounging in. Wherever. Get a small notepad or maybe even just use your smart-phone (you could do almost anything on there). Sketch, write, and do whatever you need to collect ideas. Put it all down. Good ideas are hard to come by, and sometimes bad ideas are pretty good in retrospective.

2. Get the necessary tools.

No matter what your medium is and countless brilliant ideas you have, you will more than likely need tools to operate. DIYing is all about saving money but don’t go cheap on the essential tools, that’s why it’s called essential (duh again!). Not having the proper tools can lead to inefficient work which wastes a lot of time, and it can even lead to injury (I learned my lesson). So if you’re starting out, go grab the essential items for your medium (Sewing: needles, thread… etc. Woodwork: hammer, saw… etc).

3. Learn. Always.

Never stop learning. If you’re really into your craft, you should know that there is always room for improvement. Learn new skills whether from Youtube videos to an actual enrolled lesson. Spending some time at this may in return save you more time in the future. Learning new techniques may also lead to new inspiration, so take that step to bettering your ability.

4. Make time.

This is one of the most important part of DIYing, and maybe a reason why there’s not more people doing it. Since doing a project you’ve never done before always comes with challenges, it takes a bit of time to get from start to the end and that should be accounted for. Make a list of the projects you want to do and try to arrange that with your schedule. The allotted time should also include the time you need to source out your materials and the time to experiment with different techniques to approach the project. While you’re at it,  add the time to learn new skills.

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