Personal Project: Faerie House

For W's fourth birthday I was inspired to make her a faerie house.

With Pinterest's help I decided on mostly natural and some found materials.

And a few dollhouse add-ins, like the tea set.

After the lists were made and the sketches drawn, I set to work with paper food containers, masking tape and my Exacto knife.

Household items made from air dry clay and painted to help accessorize.

Real moss and faux plants cover the outside. Paper on the inside, along with more moss.

And lots of rocks. Some things stuck better with Elmer's than hot glue, but lots of it was hot glue.

Twigs for the bed frame. A little yarn for the bed 'mattress'. Scrap fabric for the windows and the bed coverlet. Popsicle stick floors.

 Shell sink and cork chair and footstool. Twig ladder. More moss.

[Lots more.]

Sliced cork and moss floors on the main level.

I had a blast making the clay items, the fireplace, saute pan, candles and holders, a few bowls and the tabletop. I've not done a project before where things were so small, it was challenging to craft little things with my regular size fingers.

Perhaps the faerie that moves in will be an artiste?

Even though this project was theoretically for the birthday girl, it turned into a time-consuming but super fun project for me. Everything about it is delicate and beautiful, so much so that she can only use it with supervision, and even then it's an imagination tool, not so much a move things around kind of place.

[She might break it. Gasp!]

And although I'm not likely to make another one, because I made it up as I went along I learned a lot about what I would do differently next time in terms of construction.

I've had many questions about where the faerie is who lives here. I'll tell you what I told W- I built it in the hopes that one might move in. If one does she will be invisible to our human eyes, but we may see some signs that she's been hanging around.

[Yes, all faeries are girls. Don't ask me how they procreate. It's magic people.]

I'm also thinking of writing up a little story about a faerie and making W a book so she'll feel more engaged with the house and the invisible faerie who may take up residence. We'll see.

What would you make sure to include in a faerie house?


Personal Project: Concevra pour l'argent.

This was an unplanned, super fun spur-of-the-moment project today.

The last time I remember using this easy freezer paper technique I was making onesies while preggers with W. She'll be 4 next week.

I don't recall ever having done it with such precise lines as this style of lettering. I was worried that the finished product would look a little '6th grade craft project'.

I did a Pinterest search for catchy tshirt phrases and came across this one:
Will Design for Money.

Why yes, I will! It totally cracked me up. So I decided to use it, but thought translating it into French first would make the shirt a bit more fancy.

I needn't have worried about the 6th grade craft project look, even though I traced it by hand and cut it out by hand, the lines turned out beautifully.

Now I just have to keep practicing the correct pronunciation so I don't come off like an idiot when someone sasses me about my pretentious French tshirt.

By the way, do you know how to say tshirt in French?

Le tshirt.


Have you done any spur-of-the-moment projects lately?


Art Print: Easter Edition

I've been immensely satisfied by the faux calligraphy projects I've been creating.

And this new one is a favorite!

I find hand-lettering is actually relaxing to me, soothing even. There isn't any crazy pressure to get it perfect because I know I'll scan it in and move things around until I'm pleased with the arrangement. I believe it's making me a better illustrator too which is an unexpected perk.

So I'm going to share the fruits of my therapy, haha, and make some available for purchase, starting with the Norwegian Table Prayer!

The art prints will be available as a digital download from my Etsy shop. Check the shop often for new prints!

What's your therapy?


Personal Project: DIY Ballet Barre

I've been taking an adult ballet class.

Yes. Really! The city offered one through Community Ed in February and a friend convinced me to go. I haven't done ballet since I was very young, but I found I was very excited.

Run-out-and-buy-ballet-slippers excited. And I-must-have-a-leotard excited.

I'm a grown-up now though, so I bought everything in black.

[Including those awesome leg warmers. Boom! Who's a legit dancer? This girl.]

After class some of the girls and I have been talking about DIY ballet barres so we can practice at home. Our class is only once a week, and only for an hour, so practicing outside of class is nice to remember the material and to prepare us for the touring ballet company auditions.

[Haha, gotcha!]

So it's really just for fun, but still you know, necessary, and a quick Pinterest search proves it's also pretty easy. So with a little help from the little brother I set to work.

The materials used are:
1" pvc pipes, tees, elbows, crosses and spray paint. 1-1/4" poplar dowels, wood stain and poly.

First I sanded off what I could of the writing on the pvc before spray painting it.

Then I sanded and stained the dowels. I intend to poly them later. Finally I took the pieces over to the tool man, aka the little brother, and he used his miter saw to cut the pipes into the necessary lengths. We tested the height, made a few adjustments, and tada:

A portable, collapsible ballet barre. One that looks fairly elegant if I do say so myself. It isn't as stable as a wall mounted version would be, but this one requires no commitment. And it cost me less than $35 dollars to make!

There's also the distinct possibility our little dancer could use the barre when she's taller, assuming she wants to stay in dance.

Or I could make her an extra special one for her very own. I'm thinking hot pink pvc and red stain for the poplar dowels?

What do you think?