Great Finds Friday: Children’s Art Project

(Note: This information was previously shared on the Craft Ideas Facebook page, but we feel it’s important to promote efforts like this one that do social good through creativity. You can shop the Children’s Art Project website year-round, not just at the holidays. For more information, visit http://www.childrensart.org.)

Still looking for one-of-a-kind, meaningful, affordable holiday gifts for loved ones? Check off your gift list and do good at the same time. Shop online to benefit University of Texas MD Anderson Children’s Art Project (CAP). Three of our favorite crafty gift ideas are shown here. Here’s more information about the Children’s Art Project and their mission:

CAP’s in-hospital art classes offer pediatric cancer patients undergoing treatment at the Children’s Cancer Hospital the opportunity to let their spirit shine through while providing a respite from chemotherapy, needles and blood counts. What started as a volunteer project selling Christmas cards featuring the patients’ artwork operates today as a cherished non-profit and powerful million dollar enterprise with a national network of over 2,000 volunteers, 23 retail partners and almost 20,000 Facebook fans.

Most profoundly, CAP gives the young patients a sense of purpose and accomplishment, recognizing that cancer won’t get in the way of hopes, dreams and their futures.

SHOP. GIVE. DO GOOD. Merry Christmas!!!

Dawn Gehring, Craft Ideas Online Editor (www.craftideas.com)

Holiday Gift Box Stack

Craft Ideas Craft of the Day

Stack up the holiday excitement by giving three small boxes instead of one big one!

Materials

  • Cardboard boxes with lids, in assorted sizes, three
  • American Crafts Crate Paper Bundled Up Collection Paper and Ephemera Cardstock Die Cuts
  • May Arts wide cream ribbon
  • Blue shimmer twine

Tools

  • Xyron 3” Sticker Maker, 1/4” Double-Sided High Tack Tape, Adhesive Foam Squares from Teresa Collins Adhesive Kit
  • Art Anthology Fiesta Velvet Dimensional Paint
  • Ranger Tim Holtz Distress Walnut Stain ink pad

Basic Supplies

scissors, pencil, paintbrush, paper trimmer, newspaper (to cover work surface)

Directions

STEP 1

On covered work surface, paint boxes; set aside to dry.

STEP 2

Working one box at a time, cut paper panels measuring 1/4″ smaller than sides and top.

STEP 3

Ink edges of paper panels.

STEP 4

Run panels through Xyron 3” Sticker Maker.

STEP 5

Center paper on lids and sides of boxes; adhere. Repeat Steps 2-5 until boxes are covered.

STEP 6

Stack boxes as desired. Using Xyron 1/4″ Double-Sided High Tack Tape, adhere box lids to bottoms of boxes sitting above them. (Note: This allows boxes to open and gifts to be placed inside.)

STEP 7

Tie ribbon around box stack. Run die cut numbers “2” and “5” through Xyron 3” Sticker Maker; adhere to ribbon. Ink edges of mittens card. Using Xyron Adhesive Foam Squares from Teresa Collins Adhesive Kit, adhere mittens card and snowman die cut to stack. Using twine, tie Merry Christmas die cut to bow at top of stack.

Tips

  • Using these same techniques will yield a beautiful gift box from any plain box with a lid.
  • Have larger boxes? Xyron’s 5” Sticker Maker, 5” Creative Station or 9” Creative Station can be used for larger panels.

by Stacy Rodriguez for Xyron (www.xyron.com)

Great Finds Friday: STAEDTLER® Triplus® Color Fibre-Tip Pens

Welcome to another Great Finds Friday, Crafters! Today, I’m going to show you four ways to use Triplus Color Fibre-Tip Pens from STAEDTLER. These versatile markers are a perfect tool for stampers, card-makers, and scrapbookers, as well as for kids and fine artists. The brilliant, environmentally friendly, water-based ink is ideal for watercolor techniques, detail work, and coloring larger areas. Unique Dry Safe technology ensures that the markers will not dry up, even if left uncapped for days. In a home where kids frequently help themselves to mom’s craft supplies, that means added peace of mind. Here are some recent holiday tags I made using cardstock, stamps, and Triplus Color Fibre-Tip Pens.

Outline + watercolor: For the Deck the Halls Wreath Tag, I used dark gray dye ink to stamp the wreath and sentiment onto cream cardstock. I stamped the top portion of the wreath again onto cream cardstock. Using the Triplus markers, I outlined the leaves in green, both bows in red, and the sentiment in red. I dotted each leaf with two additional shades of green. I dotted the berries red. Using a water-barrel brush, I blended the color directly on the cardstock, drawing the ink from the edges to the center of each section. For the sentiment, I simply ran the tip of the brush along the outline to create a soft watercolor effect. After letting the images dry, I detail cut the second bow and adhered it to the main image using two small foam dots. Finally I adhered the cream tag to a larger kraft tag and added borders using a ruler and the green marker I used to outline the leaves.

Stamp + detail: For the Silhouette Tree Tag, I colored the silhouette stamp with an aqua marker, huffed on the stamp to moisten the ink, and then stamped onto cream cardstock. I hand drew the outline using the same marker, then added a dot border.

Watercolor background: For the Warm Winter Wishes Tag, I scribbled small puddles of three different colors – soft gray, purple, blue – onto a non-stick craft sheet. Using a water-barrel brush, I picked up the soft gray ink and applied it in random strokes over the center of the cream cardstock tag. Next, I picked up and applied blue ink around the outer edges, leaving a bit of gray visible in the center. Finally, I picked up and applied purple ink around the blue. I used dark gray dye ink to stamp the sentiment and snowflakes, and highlighted the snowflakes with Ranger Stickles Icicle Glitter Glue.

Watercolor color lift: For the Season’s Greetings Tag, I wanted a more vintage effect, so I used dark gray dye ink to stamp the bells image and sentiment onto kraft cardstock. I detailed the bands on the bells with a bit of red marker (center of bell on left, top and bottom of bell on right). Next, I scribbled small puddles of gold, red, and green marker onto a non-stick craft sheet. Using a water-barrel brush, I picked up each color and applied it to the image. I quickly blotted the image with a paper towel to prevent the color from spreading and to “lift” some of the vibrant pigment in order to create a worn look. I repeated this process for the sentiment.

The first thing you’ll notice about these markers is the nifty, triangular shape. The easy-to-hold shape means no hand fatigue when you’re doing a lot of coloring. Triplus Color Fibre-Tip Pens are particularly good for little hands, too, and the water-based, natural inks wash easily from hands and most clothing. I’m a big believer in giving kids the opportunity to use great supplies to create their own art, and these kid-friendly features make it easy to let them explore their creativity.

The markers are available individually or in sets of 10 or 20 shades, and the box doubles as a helpful stand, keeping markers at your fingertips when your creative muse calls. I know I’ll be creating more tags this weekend. What will you create?

 

Until next time, happy crafting!

Dawn Gehring, Craft Ideas Online Editor (www.craftideas.com)

DIY Rub-On Labels

Hello crafty friends, Alice here today sharing a few more details about a project I created for the Winter 2013 issue of Crafts ‘n things. I love to make homemade treats to give as gifts and am always looking for new ways to package them. When the folks at Grafix sent me some of their products to try, I was immediately drawn to the idea of creating a custom rub-on to use on holiday packaging. I loved the way these turned out and wanted to share a bit more about the process with you here.

The first thing you want to do is to design the image you want to turn into the rub-on. I used a computer to make mine, but the products also work with stamps and markers. However, keep in mind that they need to be printed in reverse, so stamped images with text won’t work. I think using a computer and inkjet printer is probably the easiest way to make these. I found some fun chalkboard labels and fonts online and used those to create my design. You can find all the details on that in the attached document at the end of this post.

Once I was happy with the way the label looked, I reversed the image and copied it to fill the page. Here is what they looked like on my computer:

After they were printed, I cut them apart and followed the manufacturer’s instructions to apply the film to the image in order to create the rub-on.

A wooden craft stick is the perfect tool to help work out any air bubbles after applying the film.

Then you need to cut out the rub-on following the outline as closely as possible so that the excess material won’t show around the edges.

From here on out, this works just like any craft rub-on. Peel off the backing and apply the rub-on to the container. I like Weck canning jars because the front of the glass is smooth and that makes it easy to apply the rub-on.

Once the rub-on looks smooth, carefully peel off the protective liner from the front.

And voilà! Custom packaging ready to be filled with holiday goodies.

Looks better all filled up, don’t you think?

Here is a peek at the other label I created for containers of my grandmother’s peanut butter fudge.

You know how magazines work several months in advance? Well, this project was created in early July… right around July 4th, and these cookies were something I made for our holiday bbq. Before the party, I pulled out all the ones with red sprinkles and used them for my photo shoot. Wonder if the cookies with blue sprinkles felt neglected?

This is my favorite sugar cookie recipe: The Best Rolled Sugar Cookies and I love this icing: Sugar Cookie Icing. You can download a pdf of the full project with instructions and a supply list, as well as a copy of my grandmother’s famous peanut butter fudge recipe HERE.

Thanks so much for visiting today. Hope you and your loved ones have a wonderful holiday season!

Happy Crafting!

Alice Golden from Golden Moments (www.alicegolden.com)

Embellished Ribbon Tote

Crafts ’n things Craft of the Day

An everyday canvas tote embellished with ribbon and lace makes a great gift or dolls up a book or beach tote. Other ornamentals such as flowers or buttons can be added for additional charm.

Materials

  • Canvas tote
  • Velvet ribbon
  • Lace
  • Coordinating all-purpose thread
  • Rhinestone button or flowers (optional)

Tools

  • VIVO™ by SINGER® Create & Repair Machine

Basic Supplies

scissors, tape measure, iron and pressing surface, straight pins, needle

Directions

STEP 1

Measure width of the tote from edge to edge; add one inch to measurement. Cut one length of each trim (lace and ribbon) from these measurements.

STEP 2

Fold under 1/2″ on each raw edge of trim to the wrong side. Press.

STEP 3

Position lace 1 inch from top edge of tote, pinning in place to secure.

STEP 4

Position ribbon on top of lace, centering horizontally; pin in place to secure.

STEP 5

Insert appropriate needle into VIVO™ Create & Repair machine for fabric to be sewn.

STEP 6

Set machine for straight stitch.

STEP 7

Thread top of machine and bobbin with all-purpose thread in color that matches or blends as closely as possible to color of lace.

STEP 8

Carefully stitch along edge on all four sides of velvet ribbon. Be sure to remove pins as you sew. (Note: The more slowly you sew the more control you have guiding the fabric while stitching.) The presser foot will help guide the fabric evenly while stitching.

STEP 9

Backstitch at beginning and end of stitching to help secure the thread in place. (Note: Backstitching secures the machine stitching so the threads do not become loose and pull out. It is done by reversing a few stitches on top of or just next to those machine stitches at the beginning or end of a line of machine sewing. )

STEP 10

Remove tote from machine. Trim thread tails.

STEP 11

For added embellishments, hand-sew rhinestone button or flowers in place.

Tip

  • If trying to choose between two colors of thread, opt for the darker color which will usually blend in better than a lighter color.

by Singer (www.singerco.com)

Machine Embroidery Gift Card Holder

Crafts ’n things Craft of the Day

Give gift cards a personal touch this holiday season. Create this fast-and-easy gift card holder using the FREE In the Hoop Gift Card Holder design from Five Star Fonts Embroidery. For your FREE download, visit www.fivestarfonts.com.

Materials

  • Cotton fabric scraps: red (package), green (bow), white (back of gift card holder)
  • Mid-weight vinyl, 4”x4”
  • Stablizers: heavy-weight cutaway, Sulky Fabri-Solvy Water Soluble
  • Embroidery thread: red, green
  • Red grosgrain ribbon, 1/4” wide, 2” length

Tools

  • Embroidery machine
  • Five Star Fonts Embroidery FREE In The Hoop Gift Card Holder Embroidery Design (FREE download at www.fivestarfonts.com)
  • Appliqué scissors
  • Sulky KK2000 Temporary Spray Adhesive

Basic Supplies

scissors, cellophane tape, iron and pressing surface, cotton swab

Directions

size

4″x4″

Gift Card Holder

(Note: Be sure to wind embroidery thread on bobbin to match top thread (green and red) since you will be able to see the back of the design.)

1. Hoop wash-away stabilizer and place hoop on machine. Run color 1 which outlines the package portion of the design.

2. Lightly spray back of fabric with Sulky KK2000. Place fabric on top of design outline with RIGHT SIDE UP, ensuring it completely covers the stitched outline. Place hoop on machine and run color 2, which tacks package fabric to stabilizer. Remove hoop when color 2 finishes. Using appliqué scissors, carefully trim around outline of design, close to stitches.

3. Place hoop on machine and run color 3, which stitches the bow outline to show bow fabric placement. Lightly spray wrong side of bow fabric; place in hoop RIGHT SIDE UP. Run color 4, which tacks it down. Remove hoop and carefully trim all around bow outline, trimming close to stitches.

4. Place hoop back on machine and run color 5 which finishes the stitches around the bow fabric. Remove hoop from machine when color 5 finishes. Fold 2” ribbon length in half with wrong sides together and press to form crease. Turn hoop to the back and place ribbon loop centered over placement line. Raw edges of ribbon should extend about 1/4” inside placement line as shown. Tape ribbon in place.

5. Lightly spray back of heavy cutaway stabilizer with spray adhesive; place on back of hoop, ensuring it covers the design. Lightly spray wrong side of white fabric with spray adhesive and place it RIGHT SIDE UP on back of hoop, covering heavy cutaway stabilizer as shown.

6. TURN hoop to front and place hoop on machine. Run color 6, which tacks ribbon in place and also stitches stabilizer/fabric to stabilizer. Remove hoop when color 6 finishes. Turn hoop to back. Using appliqué scissors, trim both fabric and stabilizer close to stitches as shown. Take care not to cut into ribbon located at top of package.

7. Place hoop on machine and run color 7 (red thread), which stitches finishing stitches around the package. Run color 8 (green thread), which stitches finishing stitches around the bow. Remove hoop from machine when color 8 finishes. Turn hoop to the back and place edge of vinyl on back of design so the edge lines up with the top of the stitches on the package as shown in photo. Tape vinyl in place. (Note: Tape vinyl on the sides of the design, well outside the design area.)

8. Turn hoop to front and place hoop on machine. Run final color 9 (red thread), which stitches vinyl in place. Remove hoop from machine when color 9 finishes. Turn hoop over so back of hoop is visible. Carefully trim the vinyl close to the stitches as shown.

9. Unhoop design and trim wash-away stabilizer as close to stitches as possible without cutting into stitches. Use a cotton swab moistened in warm water and dab gently around edges to remove excess stabilizer close to stitches.

Tip

  • Attach your gift card holder to the tree or tie it on a present.

for Five Star Fonts (www.fivestarfonts.com)

We Give Thanks Cross-stitch Breadcover

Crafts ’n things Craft of the Day

Express the sentiment of the holiday when you add an extra-special touch to your Thanksgiving table with this beautiful cross-stitch breadcover. The simplicity of the design makes it easy to stitch in one or two evenings.

 Materials

  • Charles Craft Country Oatmeal 14-count Breadcover, 18” square
  • DMC Six-Strand Embroidery Floss

Tools

  • Tapestry needle, #24

Basic Supplies

scissors, iron and pressing surface, contrasting thread

Directions

Size / Stitch Count

Size of finished design: 1-1⁄4”x5-3⁄8”x5-3⁄8”; stitch count: 75 w x 75 h

We Give Thanks Breadcover

1. Print cross-stitch chart and key. (Note: The blue words “chart” and “key” are links. To access these, select the link, then download and print items.)

2. Design will be stitched in one corner. Leaving seven rows along outer edge unworked, mark center of one corner with contrasting thread.

3. Following chart, cross-stitch with two strands of floss. Backstitch using two strands DMC 703 Chartreuse.

4. Press cloth on wrong side.

by Alida Macor

Great Finds Friday: Chic Home Dec, Fab Tools from FloraCraft®

Welcome to another Great Finds Friday, Crafters! Today, I’m going to share three exciting new creative options from FloraCraft®, makers of Make It: Fun® Foam. You’ll also get a chance to win a $50 FloraCraft® gift card, plus an opportunity to earn another $50 if a project you create with your prize gets published!

First, we have to take a look at the new three-piece Make It: Fun® Foam Tools set. I love craft tools, gadgets, etc., because I know great ones will make my creative process easier and more enjoyable. That gets me crafting more often, which is always good. This new tool kit includes three handy plastic tools for creating new shapes and textures out of craft foam. The Rasp has a rough side for gently smoothing the foam’s finish, rounding rough edges, and smoothing out cut marks. The easy-to-grip, serrated Knife smoothly cuts through foam. The Tuck & Scribe tool has a rounded end to etch patterns into foam, and a pointed end that is designed for tucking fabric pieces, felt, or ribbons into foam to create an all-over fabric finish without pins or glue. The tools are kid-friendly, too, and have a suggested retail value of $3.99 for the set of three. I think these would make ideal party favors at a crafty girls-night-in event!

One of my favorite new FloraCraft® products is the Design It:® LED Light Strand. You can add it to your dried and silk floral arrangements, even submerse it in a water-filled fresh arrangement. Place your completed floral design in a dark corner of your home to provide a soft light, or use it to bring a festive glow to the dinner table at holiday or everyday gatherings. These lights would be gorgeous entwined in evening reception table arrangements, too. Everything looks better by candlelight, and these tiny, sparkling, battery-operated lights give you that effect. Imagine them peeking out through pine boughs decorating your holiday mantle or bannister; because they have attached battery packs, finding a conveniently placed outlet is never a problem!  And battery packs can be refilled when needed for long-time use. The 34-1/2”-long LED Light Strand contains 15 warm white lights perfect for topiaries, plants, floral arrangements, and water-filled vases. Suggested retail price is $5.99. FloraCraft® also offers Design It:® LED Lighted Branches, not shown, as another creative illumination option; they retail for $7.99. You can learn more on the FloraCraft® website.

Design It:® SimpleStyle® Decorative Mesh from FloraCraft® bends easily and holds its shape, making it perfect for creating wreaths, bows, garlands, and other dimensional accents for home or special events. Metallic strands woven throughout provide extra sparkle to anything you drape, wrap, or tie with Decorative Mesh. Tie bows around chair backs for a festive event venue, loop and pin one or more colors together on a foam wreath form, or add mesh to wall hangings and gift packages. Crafts ‘n things Weekly featured this darling mesh-topped Gift Box Topiary in the October 9th issue; simply cover foam cubes with decorative paper and top with Decorative Mesh curls and bows for instant Christmas WOW! Decorative Mesh is available in 6” and 10” widths on 10-yard spools in the colors shown below. Suggested retail price is $6.99 and $7.99 respectively.

Remember to visit the www.makeitfuncrafts.com website for craft projects and the www.designitflowers.com website for floral arranging how-tos from the talented design teams at FloraCraft®, and learn more about the rest of their expanded product line. You’ll also find hundreds of easy, creative project ideas for decorating your home, gifting, entertaining, and engaging your kids in non-electronic fun.

For your chance to WIN the $50 FloraCraft® gift card, first register right now on the Crafts ‘n things  website so you don’t miss future issues of Crafts ‘n things Weekly and the Craft of the Day projects. Both are free to you, even if you haven’t subscribed to the magazine yet – and we’d love to have you as a subscriber. Next, leave a comment here telling me your favorite craft idea for holiday gift-giving. I’d love to hear from you! And be sure to LIKE Crafts ‘n things and FloraCraft on Facebook to get current news, tips, and even more great craft ideas at your fingertips.

One additional winner will win a mini prize pack of the Foam Tools, one LED Light Strand, and one roll of Decorative Mesh.

Both winners will be announced on our blog and our Facebook page on Friday, November 8th! Good luck and happy crafting!

Dawn Gehring, Crafts ‘n things Editorial Staff (www.craftsnthings.com)

Scarecrow Hot Cocoa Jar

Crafts ’n things Craft of the Day

Fill this whimsical scarecrow jar with hot cocoa or apple cider mix as a great autumn gift for a teacher or friend.

Materials

  • Recycled quart jar with lid
  • White cardstock
  • Men’s socks: brown, white
  • Felt scraps: light orange, red, white, purple, brown, green
  • Brown burlap, 6” circle
  • Buttons: two each, yellow, black, orange; one each, purple, green, brown, red
  • Black rickrack, 5” length
  • Orange polka dot ribbon, 18” length
  • Embroidery floss: black, white
  • Polyester stuffing

Tools

  • Embroidery needle
  • Hole punch, 1/4”
  • Pinking shears
  • Bright yellow fabric spray paint
  • Aleene’s Quick Dry Tacky Glue

Basic Supplies

scissors, ruler, black marker, newspaper or plastic tablecloth (to cover work surface)

Directions

STEP 1

Measure and cut 4-1/2” section from straight area on white sock. On covered work surface, spray sock bright yellow. Let dry. Position yellow sock around jar.

STEP 2

To create hat brim, cut out circle slightly smaller than jar lid in center of 6” burlap circle; set center cutout aside for future project. Apply glue to jar lid sides. Position hat brim over jar lid and pull down over edge to adhere to sides; let dry.

STEP 3

For hat, cut 5” section from straight area of brown sock. Wrap orange ribbon around one end of brown sock and tie into bow as shown. Lightly stuff hat with polyester stuffing. Roll bottom edge of hat and adhere around jar lid, covering burlap edge.

STEP 4

Using pinking shears, cut the following from felt: 1-1/2” triangle (nose) from red, two 1-1/2” circles (cheeks) from orange, two 1” circles (eyes) from white, and one 1” squares (patches) each from purple, green, and brown.

STEP 5

(Note: Use three strands white floss to sew buttons onto felt pieces; tie knot on front of buttons.) Sew coordinating-color buttons onto patches. For mouth, adhere ends of rickrack length onto centers of cheeks. Sew orange buttons over rickrack ends. For eyes, sew yellow and black buttons to white circles as shown. For nose, sew red button onto center of triangle.

STEP 6

Adhere patches onto hat. Adhere eyes, cheeks, mouth, and nose onto yellow sock on jar.

STEP 7

For tag, use marker to write “Happy Fall” on paper. Trim cardstock into tag shape around words; punch 1/4” hole in tag as shown. Insert six strands black floss through hole and orange bow; knot ends.

by Mary Ayres

Vintage Bumblebee Earrings

Crafts ’n things Craft of the Day

Fusing glass is so easy when you use Diamond Tech’s line of Fuseworks tools! Create these vintage-looking earrings to celebrate the last days of summer!

Materials

  • Diamond Tech: Fuseworks Bug-A-Boos Fuse Art Decals, Opalescent White 90 COE Fusing Glass
  • Delphi Glass Gold Plated Round Cabochon Mini Links (85435), two
  • White oven-bake polymer clay, small amount
  • Gold findings, two each: headpins, earring wires

Tools

  • Diamond Tech Fuseworks Glass Cutter, Kiln Paper, Kiln; Studio Pro Running Pliers
  • Pliers: chain-nose, round-nose
  • Wire cutters
  • Acrylic paints: gold, black
  • Microwave oven
  • Parchment-lined baking sheet and oven
  • Eclectic Products E6000 Industrial Strength Adhesive

Basic Supplies

ruler, soft cloth, oven mitts, craft knife, damp paper towel, scissors, container of water, paintbrush, newspaper (to cover work surface)

Directions

Size

3″

Earrings

1. To cut white glass, position on flat cutting surface with smooth side facing up. Starting on edge of glass and holding cutter firmly in one hand, push cutter gently and evenly across glass. Decrease pressure slightly as you reach the opposite edge of the glass; lift cutter off glass at end. Hold glass in one hand, with score facing up. With other hand, center score line in jaws of running pliers about 1/2” onto glass surface. Apply pressure to handles until glass separates into two pieces. Cut four 3/8”x3/8” squares from white glass. Clean and dry with soft cloth.

2. Cut 2”x2” from kiln paper to fit base of kiln. Place paper on kiln base. Arrange two 3/8” glass squares on top of kiln paper about 1/2” apart. Place another square on top of base square at 90º angle so corners of top square hang over sides of base square. Carefully place kiln base with glass on center of microwave oven. Place lid on top of base.

3. To achieve full fuse, microwave on high for 2-1/2 minutes. (Note: Every microwave oven and kiln will vary. If using a microwave with a lower wattage, keep the time consistent but increase the power.) When microwave time has expired, use oven mitts to carefully open lid. If glass is not fused to your liking, return kiln lid to base and place in microwave for 30 second intervals until fused. (Note: Glass is VERY hot. Be extremely careful and never touch the glass.)

4. When desired results have been achieved, use oven mitts to remove kiln from microwave oven. Set kiln on heat resistant work surface and let cool for 30-45 minutes. (Note: Do not leave the lid off the kiln for an extended period of time during this stage. Removing the lid may cause your glass to crack.)

5. While glass is cooling, create two mini beehives by rolling 1/2” balls of clay into cone shapes. Use craft knife to carve three horizontal lines around each cone. Insert headpin  through bottom center of each cone. Follow manufacturer’s instructions to bake beehives on parchment-lined baking sheet in oven. Let cool.

6. Once fused glass from kiln has cooled, remove fiber paper from back of glass by rubbing surface with damp paper towel.

7. Use scissors to cut out two bumblebee decals. Cut tiny slits around edges of each decal to help set on rounded surface. Place decals in container of water for 30 seconds. Slide backing paper off decal and set on cooled glass. (Note: The decal should slide off backing paper easily. If it doesn’t, let soak in container of water for 10-15 more seconds.) Use paper towel to pat moisture from decal and glass. Smooth out air bubbles with fingertip. Let dry thoroughly before firing.

8. Cut 2”x2” from kiln paper and place on base of kiln. Place two pieces of glass on top of kiln paper. Carefully place kiln in microwave oven. Follow fusing guide on decal packaging for best results when fusing decals. Use oven mitts to carefully open kiln lid after time has expired. If white residue appears on decal, return kiln lid to base and place in microwave for 30 second intervals until white residue disappears. (Note: Never touch the glass. Glass is VERY hot.) Let glass completely cool for 30-45 minutes before removing from kiln.

9. On covered work surface, paint each beehive gold. Let dry. Lightly paint with (1:1) mixture of black paint and water. Let dry for about 10 minutes. Drybrush beehives gold. Let dry.

10. Adhere each fused glass piece to front of cabochon link using glue. Let set.

11. Use chain-nose pliers to bend wire end on headpin in beehive to 90º angle. Grasp headpin with round-nose pliers and pull wire up and over top of round-nose pliers to form full loop. Cut excess wire off looped end on headpin using wire cutters. Open loop and attach onto bottom link on cabochon; close loop to secure. Attach earring wire to top link on cabochon. Repeat process for other earring.

by Lauren DiSanza for Diamond Tech (www.diamondtechcrafts.com)