How To

HOW TO: Make a Tiny Pumpkin

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WHAT YOU NEED:

  • Orange polymer clay

  • Green Polymer clay (or brown)

  • Toothpick or clay pick

  • Oven

Let’s Get Started:

  1. There are two routes to take when creating your pumpkin, you can choose to use orange clay, or white clay ,and add paint later

  2. Preheat your oven to 275

  3. Start by making 8, equal logs of clay - the clay should be approximately 1” long and ¼” wide

  4. Pinch the ends of each log slightly to taper.

  5. Carefully bend the logs to make a crescent shape

  6. Begin connecting the logs to form a sphere

  7. Press together gently to seal

  8. Use a toothpick to smooth any connections and add additional detail

  9. Roll another small piece of clay, appx ¼” long, and 1/8” wide, this will be the stem

  10. Taper one end, and insert into the top of the pumpkin.

  11. Use the toothpick to smooth the connection

  12. Bake the pumpkin for 15 minutes

  13. Remove, and let cool

  14. Finish with modpodge

  15. Looking for another creative project? Check Out ChelseaMakes Simplekits!

HOW TO: Make a Tiny Moleskine notebook

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How To: Make a Tiny Moleskine notebook

WHAT YOU NEED:

  • 1 sheet of brown kraft paper

  • Sewing needle

  • 1 sheet of white printer paper

  • Thread

  • Scissors/exacto knife

Let’s Get Started:

  1. Cut 1 - 1.5” x 1” piece of brown kraft paper

  2. Gently score down the middle of the paper with x-acto knife, be sure not to cut all the way through the paper

  3. Fold in half

  4. Cut 3 - 1.5” x 1” white paper

  5. Fold in half

  6. Open the folded papers and place the white papers inside of the brown paper

  7. Using the sewing needle, puncture 6 wholes through the cover and sheets

  8. Sew the sheets together through the pre-punched holes.

  9. Trim any overhang of the white pages

 

Wondering where that tiny Moleskin would look best? Because I love it on the table of the San Francisco Living Room! So Cute.

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FIVE WAYS: That crafting helped me heal from depression

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My Depression:

I’m not a professional, but knowing my own battles, and I hope this will inspire you to do whatever you can to get out of your rut.

I frequently get caught up in the blues, whether it’s an off-day or a few bad weeks. When I’m feeling in a rut, I’ve learned that one of the best ways to snap myself out of it, is to be creative. Here’s why:

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1. A sense of accomplishment - Creating something new makes me feel like I achieved something. Whether its a quick sketch, an organized to-do list, or a full on craft, making something, especially when I don’t have to leave the house or even get out of bed, is a way to make me feel motivated even when motivation is low.

2. A sense of community - The first time I was depressed I knew I needed to find a way to get creative. That day, in the mail, came the local community education guide. I signed up for my first woodworking class and immediately was surrounded by some of the most supportive, creative, and excited people. They checked in on my projects, checked in on me when I was feeling blue, and were supportive about my goals and learning.

3. A renewed purpose - I love my job, but when a client is being particularly pesky, it helps to have a creative project of my own to rely on.

4. A reason to learn - When you’re out of school, you so infrequently get an opportunity for organized learning. When you give yourself a challenge, you’re giving yourself a distraction, a purpose to take time to explore something new.

5. A form of meditation - Getting in the zone lets you distract yourself from whatever might be making you blue, whether you know what it is, or not.

 

…just getting started?

Here are my tips for you:

1. Start small. When depression is in full swing, sometimes even getting out of bed is a struggle. If you choose too big of a project, you’re more likely to get overwhelmed, give up, or get distracted. Whether it’s writing a quick journal entry, sketching a quick doodle, or working on a Simplekit- choosing something that you can start and finish in one sitting will give you an instant sense of accomplishment.

2. Try something new. Scan your local papers, advertisements, and schools for community Ed programs. These programs tend to be affordable. Learning something new is a great way to kick-start a new passion with some guidance. 

3. Start with a kit, book, or tutorial. If not knowing where to begin is holding you back, start with something that has a step by step guide. This will keep you focused and make it much easier to finish the project. I love miniatures, so my go to is the Modern Miniatures here: Miniature Kits

4. Make time for it.  Even if it’s just 10 or 15 minutes a day, hold yourself accountable, and give yourself the time to create.

5. Remember that it doesn’t need to be perfect. Iterations are part of the process. Don’t get caught up on details, just let your mind relax and enjoy the moment to create.

HOW TO: Make a Tiny Cactus

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Plants, in general always add a little something special to a room. This plant might be tiny, but its petite size and handmade look are sure to put a smile on your face.

This tiny plant looks great in any room, but I think it really shines in the Chelseamakes Simplekit dollhouse: The Mill Valley



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WHAT YOU NEED:

  • Green Polymer clay

  • Brown polymer clay

  • A toothpick

  • Wire

  • Wood or metal bottle cap

  • Oven



LET’S GET STARTED:

  1. Find yourself a clean surface.

  2. Pre-set your oven to 275 degrees

  3. Begin by rolling the polymer clay in your hand to soften. Work with clean hands to make sure your cactus is free from dust and debris

  4. Once soft separate and roll to create 6 balls – (1) Large – 3/4”, (2) Medium - 1/2”, (3) Small – ¼”

  5. Gently press on each of the clay balls to flatten to approximately 1/8”

  6. Pinch on end and re-flatten as necessary to form the paddle

  7. Using the toothpick, make light indentations to make the cactus spikes!

  8. Insert the brown clay into the bottle cap

  9. Insert a piece of wire so that it sticks out from the bottom of the largest cactus paddle

  10. Insert the paddle into the brown clay

  11. Cut two small pieces of wire an insert into the medium sized paddles

  12. Insert into the largest paddle

  13. Repeat the process with the smallest paddles

  14. Bake at 275 for 15 minutes

  15. Remove from oven, let cool

  16. Coat with modpodge to finish

For an added bonus, I coated the brown clay of the plant with black seeds and added some little red flowers. You can also experiment with different cactus styles!

Enjoy!