Ring of Daisies-Part II

Happy Friday, my friends, and thank you for coming back for Part II of my series. Today I get to show you the coordinating daisy candle rings that I created for our table. I’ve never made candle rings before, but after having so much success with the napkin rings, I was anxious to give them a try!

When I pictured this project in my mind, I envisioned white candle holders and taper candles so that the candle rings would really stand out. I didn’t want to use traditional candle sticks, but wanted to repurpose and paint a jar or glass of some kind to add some charm and interest to the table. I also wanted the holders to be low profile, so that my husband and I could still see each other over the candles. With these criteria in mind, I went “shopping” around my house and I finally settled on using wide mouth half-pint mason jars. These jars have a great shape, but I was a little concerned about the wide mouth. I didn’t know whether I could make a daisy big enough to cover the entire opening, without distorting it’s shape. I guess I was about to find out!

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I have painted a lot of mason jars and I prefer using the chalk paint pictured above. It provides excellent coverage and I love the opaque look it gives the jars. I put 3 coats of paint on each jar and then sanded the surfaces with extra fine sand paper to expose some of the words. I finished off each jar with a coat of the cream wax paint, which softens and smooths out the chalky finish. After you apply the cream wax, let it dry and then rub the jars with a cotton cloth to bring out the shine. Before I put the jars aside, I stuck the tapers in the middle of the jars with this candle adhesive that we purchased from Current many years ago. It really works and a little bit goes a long way!

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With the candle holders finished, I now needed to concentrate on the actual rings. When I initially thought about making the rings, I figured that I would just cut the flowers in half and wrap them around the taper candle. Wrong! I off set the petals as I add each flower layer, so if I cut the flowers in half, the entire flower would just fall apart. Once again, making these candle rings proved more challenging that I originally thought. I have got to stop coming up with these complicated ideas!

Instead of wrapping the flowers around the candles, I needed to make a ring to just slip over the candles. I measured the tapers and discovered that the candles were about 1″ in diameter where the candle ring would sit. I also measured the opening of the jars and determined that using the enlarged flower would cover the opening perfectly. So I put on my engineering hat and went to work. It took a lot of thought and failed attempts, but I finally figured out a way to create an open ring in the middle of the flowers while keeping them intact. Here come the pictures!

 

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And here come the circle punches again! I created rings by punching a 1″ circle out of  both a 1 1/2″ and a 1 3/4″ circle, and these rings helped hold the flower layers together when I cut the middle out of each flower. I ended up just using 2 size layers for each flower, and used a larger scallop circle for the flower center.

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I started out by making 8 enlarged flowers and punching out 8 of the larger daisy punch. I applied adhesive all around one of the 1 3/4″ circle rings and also added a little adhesive to each individual flower petal just beyond the circle edge. I centered a flower on the circle ring and pressed it down. Then I turned the flower over and snipped out the middle of the flower. As an aside, what does the picture above remind you of? You’re right; a ship’s wheel. You might be seeing that return on a future project. But I digress…..

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I then added another flower, offsetting the petals and then turned it over and snipped out the middle again. It would have been much quicker to just put all four layers on and then use the 1″ circle punch to remove all four layers at once, but the hand punches can’t cut through more than one layer of card stock at a time.

I followed this same process until I had all four flowers layered together. Here’s what one flower size layer looked like at this point:

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Look at that–I did it! I created a flower layer that stayed together even with the middle cut out of it! Pretty impressive for a non-engineer!

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I then started over with the next flower size and followed the same process to complete all four flower layers using the 1 1/2″ circle ring. When this size flower was finished, I put some foam dimensionals on the larger layer and attached the two sized flowers together.

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For the inner ring, I carefully snipped each scallop and glued 2 rings together, offsetting the scallops. I’m not planning to attach this ring to the flower layers; I’m just going to slip it on over the flower.

And now for the moment of truth–what does it look like when I put everything together? Will the flower ring stay together after I slip it over the candle? Let’s find out:

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What do you think? I absolutely love them, and I think they turned out even better than I imagined! The shape of the jars add so much charm and interest without detracting from the flower rings, which is exactly what I set out to accomplish. Now let’s see what they look like on the table along with the napkin rings:

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Notice that my husband and I are practicing our social distancing! I kept the table settings plain and simple so that the napkin and candle rings would stand out. The woven placemats bring in some texture without adding color, and the lace trim on the cloth napkins compliments and highlights the sweetness and charm of the daisies.

These rings weren’t quick and easy to design and make, but they were definitely worth all of the time and effort. I absolutely love having the kitchen table decorated for Spring, and the overall effect is simple, soft and charming. It makes me smile every time I walk by or sit at the table.

It’s been great to spend some time together these past two days, but I am ready to take off my engineering cap; step away from the daisy hand punches; and move on to easier projects. All of this shelter in place time is perfect for crafters like me, so I am sure we will be together again soon. You are in my thoughts and I hope you stay healthy and safe. Until next time, remember:

“May the waves kiss your feet; the sand be your seat; and your friends out-number the stars.”

-C-

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Rings of Daisies–Part I

I am still making paper daisies here–I can’t seem to put these hand punches down! Once you get a rhythm going, they come together so quickly and are addicting! While I was making all of the flowers for my Spring frame (see post here), an idea popped into my head to try and make daisy napkin rings and candle rings. I could just picture how sweet the kitchen table would look all decorated for Spring. Turning the picture I had in my head into a reality proved to be more challenging than I would have imagined, and required much more engineering that I am used to or good at. I have worked on these projects for two weeks and am finally ready to show you what I came up with. I decided to divide the “big reveal”  into two parts, as each post will be very photo heavy. So, are you ready for Part I? Then let’s go!

Part I is all about the napkin rings. I thought that this would be a quick and easy project–all I had to do was make the daisies, and then velcro some ribbon onto the back of each flower; much like I had done with my Easter napkin rings posted here. Wrong! I discovered that the flowers as is were too small to use as a napkin ring–they really needed one more layer.  If I had a third larger daisy punch, this would have been a piece of cake, but there isn’t such a punch. So this meant that I needed to figure out another way to add one more layer to each flower.

I soon realized that there were two issues that I needed to solve in trying to add on to each flower–not only did I need to lengthen each petal, but I also had to make sure that all of the petals were lengthened evenly. After a lot of trial and error, I finally came up with a process which my pictures will help to explain:

In order for the process to make sense, let me show you what supplies I used to make a 2-layer flower as pictured on my Spring frame:

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The only thing you need to take away from this picture is that you need 4 flowers of each daisy punch size to make up the bottom and middle layers of the daisies like I used on my picture frame.

To make a third, longer layer you will need an additional 8 flowers from the large daisy punch, plus (4) 1″ circles and (4) 1 3/4″ circles. I have punched the 1″ and 1 3/4″ circles out of navy card stock for visual effect:

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I used the different sized circles to ensure that each petal and flower were lengthened evenly. The next few pictures will explain this in more detail.

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The first thing I did was to glue the 1″ circles to the middle of 4 of the daisies, and then I cut off each petal beyond the 1″ circle, so that each petal was approximately the same length as all of the others.

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I then placed a 1 3/4″ circle in the middle of another daisy, and glued all of the petals pieces onto the shorter petals by placing them just beyond the circle edge. This is what it looks like once all of the petal pieces are glued on:

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I continued following the above steps until I had 4 lengthened flowers. This definitely was “futzy” and time-consuming; but worth it! I put an enlarged flower next to the smaller, original sized flower for comparison:

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You get an even better idea when you see the size comparison on actual napkins–I used rubber bands to gather the napkins and just sat the two flowers on top.

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The third layer makes such a difference, don’t you think? The smaller flower just gets lost  on the napkin–it just isn’t commanding enough to stand out.

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To create the actual ring, I used 6″ pieces of a white textured ribbon and 5/8″ white velcro dots.IMG_7556

I joined both sides of each dot together and stuck one in the middle of each ribbon and another on one end. I placed the flower on top of the middle dot and then brought the ribbon around and joined the two ribbon ends together to make a ring.

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And the napkin rings are done. Whew–thanks for enduring all of those pictures! As a reward, here is the picture you have been waiting for–the table all set:

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Well, I can’t show you the entire table yet, but here’s a sneak peak of a table setting. This will have to hold you until tomorrow, when I will post Part II–the candle rings.

Until then, I hope you are all healthy and safe, and that you are adapting to the new normal in our daily lives. It sure is a challenge, isn’t it! You are all in my thoughts, and until tomorrow, remember:

“May the waves kiss your feet; the sand be your seat; and your friends out-number the stars”.

-C-

 

Mum’s The Word–Part 2

Good morning and welcome back! I’m excited to share the second half of my post with you.

Here’s where I left off yesterday:

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My plain black gift bag was all dressed up and ready to go.

Now it was time to focus on the fuchsia bag. My plan was to keep the design elements the same, so all I needed to do was change out the color scheme and I would be done in no time. Or so I thought! It wasn’t as easy as that, because I discovered that I didn’t have any patterned paper that coordinated with melon mambo, and using this paper was the whole crux of my design.

I now was faced with a decision: I could either change the entire design plan, or I could try and find patterned paper in a complimentary color to use. I chose to do the latter, and got right back to work. It took some time to find that perfect color–I needed to make sure that I had several different patterns of paper for whatever complimentary color I chose, and, equally as important, the color I selected needed to maintain and/or enhance the vibrant personality of the flower. My final choice was ……

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Navy! I think it ended up being the perfect option because it has the same color intensity and weight as melon mambo, plus it enhances the color and just makes the flower pop. You even get a better sense of that when you see the adornment on the bag:

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In the end, I couldn’t be happier! I was able to keep the same overall design while creating  a fun bag that matched the flower’s vibrant personality. Check, check, and check.

I’ll close with a picture of both of the gift bags:

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I hope you have a wonderful weekend, and, as always, remember:

“May the waves kiss your feet, / the sand be your seat, / and your friends out-number the stars”.

-C

 

 

 

Mum’s The Word–Part 1

I’ve been taking inventory of all of my basic supplies this week, and, as a result, I have found all kinds of things I had forgotten I had. One of the finds I am most excited about discovering is some plain gift bags. I love to dress up plain bags by making what I call gift bag adornments–the decorations for the outside of the bag. I feel like an artist each time I make them, because they literally transforms plain bags into beautiful works of art.

Creating these particular adornments is going to be somewhat challenging for me, as the bags I found are black and fuchsia. I hardly ever use these two colors, and, if I do, it’s as an accent color only. Since I’m already going to be out of my comfort zone by needing to work with these bold colors, I decided to really stretch my limits by making some paper flowers to use as part of the adornments. I’ve always been intimidated by paper flowers, so I’ve never attempted to make them. That is until I saw this recent video by Linda Parker, a Stampin’ Up! demonstrator from the UK, on how to make a paper chrysanthemum:

I think these flowers are so pretty, and I can’t wait to see how amazing they look on the front of a gift bag. So I watched the video several times; and then proceeded to make my very first paper flowers.

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Given that this was my first experience, I’m pretty excited about how they turned out!  I made the flowers out of watermelon wonder (left) and melon mambo card stock, and what’s surprising to me is how each flower took on a different personality, just by color alone. The watermelon wonder flower looks elegant and classic, while the melon mambo flower looks vibrant and cheerful.

The best part, for me, about making these adornments is that there are no rules or restrictions, like there are for cards. In designing cards, you need to be careful about how many layers or embellishments you add, as the card will be going inside an envelope and potentially mailed. The more layers and embellishments you add; the more money you spend in postage. With adornments, however, you can layer and embellish to your heart’s content, as you put them on the outside of a gift box or bag, rather than inside an envelope. You can just let your creative juices flow and have fun. That is exactly what I did, and here is the adornment I came up with using the watermelon wonder flower:

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Stampin’ Up! released some new designer paper to coordinate with the new colors they introduced in June, and I used several coordinating prints to create some banners as the base of my adornment. I like to layer banners for my adornments–it’s a great way to use up some of my paper scraps, and they add weight and visual interest to the overall design. I kept things pretty simple to allow the flower to take center stage, and mounting the flower on a black circle just made it pop and stand out even more.

With the adornment made, it is now time to turn my attention to the plain gift bag. It doesn’t take much to dress up the bag–even something as simple as adding some coordinating strips of paper can make a huge difference. The last step is to clip the adornment to the gift bag with a mini clothespin, and the project is finished; the gift bag is all dressed up and ready to go.watermelon wonder tag & bag_1 It’s truly amazing how some strips of paper and a few simple embellishments can totally transform a plain bag into a work of art! And this color combination is just stunning. Color fascinates me. Black, on it’s own, is a very strong, powerful color, and yet in this instance, it takes a back seat and just enhances the beauty of the watermelon wonder.

One bag down; one to go. Tune in tomorrow for Part 2.

I hope you’ve had a good day, and, as always, remember:

“May the waves kiss your feet, / the sand be your seat, / and your friends out-number the stars”.

-C