Being an artist is the best profession in the world! Bringing something to life with your own hands definitely has a profound and lasting effect on the soul. Getting the chance to create something beautiful with one of the best tools on the market is even more of a dream come true!
Over the last few years, we have had the immense pleasure of getting to know the team at Spellbinders. Not only are they some of the most innovative women in the craft industry, they are also a hoot to hang out with! Stacey Caron has built herself an amazing team, and we could not be any happier to know them!
When we announced our upcoming Spellbound Event (you're coming, aren't you!?!), one of the first phone calls I got was from Stacey. She wanted to be involved in the festivities, both personally and professionally. We are beyond thrilled that Spellbinders has signed on to be one of our Platinum sponsors for Spellbound (see, even the even name was a foreshadowing of our soon-to-be collaboration!!)
As an added bounus, we got the opportunity to play with a Spellbinders Grand Calibur machine, along with some of their dies, and create this beautiful home decor tutorial for you! YAY!
See...glitter and bling and linen...OH MY! What a beautiful way to spruce up your mantle display or welcome a visitor in a guest room. Using supplies that are readily available, and a little creative license, an heirloom is born!
Let's get started, shall we?!?
These are the toys from Spellbinders that I used for the tutorial. First, how stinking cute is the Grand Calibur?!? Anything hot-pink MUST be fabulous, am I right?? I have also fallen completely in love with the Grand Peony and Foliage dies. They are so incredibly versatile... they can cut, emboss AND stencil...we are giddy with the possibilities!
Here are some of the fun bits and bobs that I pulled in from my studio stash. As you probably already know about A Gilded Life, nothing is really complete unless it has vintage bling and German Glass Glitter on it!
What you will need to complete this project;
•Spellbinders Grand Calibur Machine (although their dies are compatible with all die cutting machines!! BONUS!)
•2-3 sheets of cardstock (you can even use leftover scrapbook paper. Just make sure it is a fairly heavy weight)
•Scraps of your favorite linen or fabric to coordinate with your decor
•New or vintage brooches and buttons... old broken jewelry works too!
•Assorted colors of German Glass Glitter
•Vintage sheet music or dictonary page. I used an oversized sheet, approx 11"x17".
•Several yards of 1/2" ribbon. I used washed and dyed seam binding in an oyster color for the stems of the flowers and leaves, and peony pink for the ribbon. It takes about 5 yards of each. Any silky-soft ribbon will work. We just happen to be obsessed with beat-up seam binding!!
•Heavy gauge wire. I used tie-wire from the hardware store. Floral wire would work great too. You can find this at your local craft store. 22 gauge would work best.
•Tacky Glue or Elmer's Glue.
Additional materials needed but not pictured;
•Metallic silver or gold paint. We swear by DecoArt and use it exclusively in the studio.
•Paintbrush, scissors, glue gun, glue sticks, heavy-duty wire cutters.
•Favorite picture frame. For me, it was an amazing flea market find that has been looking for its purpose in life!
•Cardboard or bookboard big enough to fit in your frame. Mine was large, so I cut up a box from the mountain of them in my garage :)
•Cotton (or poly) sheet batting.
Whew. Now that you have assembled all of the items needed...let's do this thing!
By following the basic instructions on how to use the Grand Calibur, cut out an assortment of leaves and peony petals with your cardstock. I layered three sheets to maximize my cutting time. It went through like butter! I also grabbed an 8x10-ish scrap of linen and ran it through with the peony petals. If you add a sheet of cardstock to the cutting side of the dies with the fabric, it will make the cut much more effective. Even using a fabric as fibrous as linen, I had very little clingy-stringies to deal with. Always a bonus when cutting fabric!
Next, cut the tie-wire in various lengths using heavy-duty wire cutters. My wire ranges from 4-8". I was not specific with which shape got which size. In the end, if your stem is short, you can camouflage it.
Hot glue the wire to the all of the leaves and the larger of each flower pair with a generous amount of wire going on to the cardstock. It helps the shape remain stable even after it's painted and glued.
Now, we're going to paint all of the leaves and flowers. Front and back. Including the ones on wire.
You don't need to paint the wire.
Now, to begin the glittering process!!!
First, we need to coat one side of a shape at a time with glue. My favorite glittering glue is a mixture of 3-4 parts Tacky Glue to BARELY one part of water. I always start off with less water and add more if I feel it's still too thick. Your goal is to have it "move" on the paper easily without getting streaky separations.
A really handy alternative is using Elmer's glue right out of the bottle.
Coat the entire side of the shape at once. Make sure not to have the glue bead up on the back side. It makes the glitter really chunky on the back.
Now the fun part!! I like to pour my glitter into a container and use a spoon to apply on the shape. I like the even coverage it gets, and it will also keep your glitter from getting glue blobs in it from dunking your item in it. Win-win.
So, here's the deal...I used sliver, gold, antique pink and celedon German Glass Glitter and assorted what I used on each shape. In the end, I chose not to use the celedon leaves because I really loved the vintage look the silver, gold and pink created. I have the green leaves on my desk just BEGGING to be used...and believe me, they will be!
When the shapes are all glittered front and back (and sides too, it makes a HUGE difference!!) let them dry thoroughly. When you think they're nice and cured, you can shape the flowers with your fingers. Pinch and roll each petal and leaf. It creates a little realism as well as spectacular texture for the glitter to play off of.
Keep in mind that this is glass glitter, and use due caution when handling it.
Here is everything all glittered and shaped.
Now, we will wrap the stems of the leaves and flowers using seam binding. Here is where I used the oyster color. Start at the bottom and put a tiny dab of Tacky Glue to secure. Fold over the tip before you start wrapping your way up. When you get to the very top, cut the ribbon and again use a tiny dab of glue to finish.
See how sweet they all are!!
Next, measure the opening of your picture frame. Cut a piece of cardboad to size.
Cut a piece of batting the same size. Do not wrap the batting!
Glue it down.
Cut a piece of fabric with enough width to wrap the cardboard. I used a remnant of upholstery weight linen in a spectacular burlap color.
When you are wrapping your fabric, make sure that you are pulling even and taut. I used a glue gun to secure.
Now, we will attach the fabric covered board to the frame. Making sure it is lined up evenly, secure to the frame using your glue gun. If you need more time for manipulation of the positioning, you can use an epoxy glue like E-6000 instead. Just make sure to give plenty of time for the glue to set.
*If you are using a frame that has anchors or small nails on the back to secure the artwork, simply skip the above step and use those!
Next, put a nice layer of glue on the back side of your sheet music. I loved how the piece that I chose showed it's age with a few tears around the edges. I decided not to glue all the way to the edge so that these tears would retain their personality. I equally love how this page is a little off-square. Only in the days of hand-pressed sheet music would you get so much character!
Position the paper with it centered side-to-side, but raised slightly to the top. This will allow room for the stems of your bouquet of flowers to hang down.
Ok. Let's bling up our flowers now!
First, stack the partner layers to each of your petals on the wires. Use a bit of hot glue to attach. When that is complete and they are all set, place a button, brooch or whatever strikes your fancy to the centers of the flowers. It's okay if they don't match, in fact, we prefer it!!
After you have layed out your flowers and leaves and achieved the perfect arrangement, attach them to the frame using the glue gun. I like to carefully lift each stem and tuck the glue behind rather than completely removing everything. It makes it easier to make slight adjustments as needed.
When all of your flowers and leaves are attached, if you need to manipulate your stems into a more appealing shape, do so now. You can also add a bit of glure to secure.
Next, I tucked my die-cut linen peonies behind the outer glittered flowers and attached with glue. I loved the texture that this added behind the glitter. (These weren't on stems.)
Finally, I took the 5 yards of peony pink seam binding and created a "bundle bow". Tie off the ends of the ribbons for a more finished look. We thought it was really sweet how the tendrils of the ribbons fell on to the frame.
So, there you have it!
Who knew that a tool you may already have in your craft room for cards and page layouts could go "beyond the page" in such a fantabulous way! Using items that are probably tucked away and forgotten, you can create a collage of memories by bringing them back to life. I know that my grandmother's brooch has never looked so good!!
xoxo Debbie & Shea