Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Scrapbook Paper Covered Skulls

This project took a little bit of patients and a lot of Mod Podge (probably because one of the cats spilt half the bottle on the rug).

But I think the results were worth it (even the crunchy dry spot in the area rug now hidden under the ottoman).

Because I'm so happy with how it turned out! These skulls are exactly what I pictured when I decided to do this project.

I started with paper mache skulls (which were super cheap at the craft store), some sheets of scrapbook paper (I used only a black, white and gray pallet), and some bright colored craft paint.

The only problem was that the inside of the skulls wasn't finished. It was just bare newspaper and I didn't like that at all. But I couldn't finish the inside because the bottoms were sealed.

So first I used a craft knife to cut hole into the bottom of each skull.

Then covered the holes in the face with some low-tac tape, so the paint wouldn't run out. And painted the inside of each skull a different color.

Once they were dry I decided which paper I wanted to go on each skull and started in with the Mod Podge.

I'm not going to lie, this was some seriously meticulous decoupaging. Probably the hardest I've ever done because I really tried to make the patterned papers look seamless.To do that I cut the paper into small pieces and was careful to place them so that the edges matched as best as I could. Like a jigsaw puzzle. I also cut lots of little darts into the pieces of paper so they would lay smoothly over the curves in the top of the cranium and face.

No doubt about it, I definitely worked my podging muscles. But they're stronger now than they were before, and I feel like I could do a big decoupaging project with no problem!

After all the skulls were covered I used craft paint that matched the base color of the paper to fill in any bare spots showing through. If I did this project again I'd definitely paint the entire skull before I covered it with paper. No matter how hard you try, tiny slivers of the skull underneath are going to show. Filling them in afterwards was harder than just giving the entire thing a base coat in the first place.

If you're not into this much decoupaging you can also just partially cover them with paper, and draw in some details with a permanent marker. That's what I did with this guy, he's got some paper details on the top of his head and face, but most of the facial details were done with marker.

I planned to display these on the dining room table but they creep The Mister out, so I might have to find a less conspicuous spot for them.

Monday, September 26, 2011

Coffee Filter Spiderwebs and Banners

I first posted this project last year. But I'm making more of these super easy webs and banners this year so I thought I'd post the idea again. Hope you don't mind a rerun!

This is an easy technique similar to making a paper doll, and I love the results. The slightly translucent coffee filter makes the perfect cobweb.

Here's how you do it:

First fold a large filter in half, then in half again, and in half again so you end up with a wedge.

Starting at the tip of the wedge lightly draw curved bars across the filter with a pencil.

Make more bars until you get to the back of the wedge. I usually make 4 bars going across.

Then I mark out the edges. This just helps me to keep where I'm going to cut on track.

Now that your web is marked out you'll need a craft knife to cut out all the areas in the center.
The areas that are scribbled in are the ones I'm going to cut.

A sharp knife blade really helps get through all those layers of the filter cleanly.

Once you have all the areas cut out with the craft knife take your scissors and round the outside edge to match the arms of the web.

Now unfold and you have a great web to decorate your house for Halloween.

You could stop there, but these also make an awesome banner.

To make a banner, start by cutting each web in half with scissors.

Glue each section of web to a piece of white thread (or string).

I placed a dot of glue on each edge and in the middle of every web section and stuck the thread into the glue.

Keep going until you have a banner as long as you need. And that's all there is to it. I love how this came out and can't wait to hang them all over the house!

P.S. You can use large industrial coffee filters to make really big webs too!
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