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Pine Cone Bird Feeder
Dandelion Wreath
Decorative Paper Chains
Basic Melt and Pour Soap
Homemade Pet Treats

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Recent Arts and Crafts by PonchoMeg: The Modern Bohemian

I have been super crafty lately.  Here are some of my recent creations.

First, we have a Winter/Holiday Centerpiece I made in mid-November.  I made about 5 total, and had enough materials left over to make a wreath! Fun stuff.

Then we have the paper chains that A. and I made to help make our home that much more festive!  We cut the strips from old magazines like People, Glamour, Cosmopolitan, and Marie Claire and then fashioned them together with scotch tape.  It was lots of fun and a nice project to collaborate on.

Then we have this crazy picture I edited in paint! haha  I was feeling super excited about my Cloud Magic t-shirt so I created this fanciful, crazy, pretty picture of me blowing magic energy out into the universe.  Deep, I know.

Finally we have a picture that I painted on a piece of cardboard from an old box we had.  I wanted to do something with lilacs and I wanted it to be a bit impressionistic, in tribute to one of my favorite painters: Monet.  What do you think?

Lately, I have also been big into crocheting again, and I made a great Scarf/Neck Warmer, but I haven't taken any pictures.  I am also working on a blanket.  And of course, I have some jewelry in progress.  Ah... creativity.  I love it!

Monday, December 28, 2009

How to Make a Dandelion Wreath for your Head

If you are a hippie, bohemian, free-spirit like me, you know that there is a lot of joy in having flowers in your hair.  It connects you to the Earth, it helps others to notice your natural beauty and the beauty around you, and it is also a cheap, easy, and "green" way to be pretty and fashionable.

So here, I give you a step by step guide for making a great floral wreath out of dandelions.

(Because I am not very good at details sometimes, as I just DO things and experiment, I will be referencing The Hippie Handbook by Chelsea Cain.)

First, you need to gather your materials.  This is a project you will have to do in the spring and summer months if you live in Michigan like I do if you are looking for fresh materials.  You CAN make floral wreaths with fake flowers, but not with the method I am going to show you today.  If you want to make a floral wreath with fake flowers, check out this article by Melissa Howard.

25-45 blooming dandelions (yellow)*
A rag or washcloth
Your fingernails or a small, sharp object

*Make sure you pick your dandelions as close to the root as possible so that you will have a lot of stem to work with.

1. Using your fingernail (or your small sharp object) make a 1/2 inch long slit all the way through each stem.  Make this slit close to the flower itself in order to have a thick, lush wreath.

2. Pick a dandelion to start with.  Then, take another dandelion and insert it into the slit in the first dandelion stem.  Pull through gently, but make it tight.  Then take your next dandelion and slip it through the slit in your second dandelion.

3. Continue this process until your chain is the length you will need to have it fit comfortably on your head.

4.  When the chain is the right length, take your last flower and increase the slit to about 1 whole inch.  Fit the entire head of your first flower through it and pull gently to tighten it.  You should have a dandelion wreath now!

5. Using your rag or washcloth, wipe all the dandelion goo from your hands. (Or you can wash them, if there is water available.)

6. Wear your beautiful, handcrafted dandelion wreath with pride!

Sunday, December 27, 2009

Pine Cone Bird Feeder

Here's a fun craft that is great for people of all ages to make and enjoy: A pine cone bird feeder!  It's great to make in the winter months as you can make it indoors, hang it up outside your favorite window, and then sit by your cozy fire and watch the birds enjoy the treat through the window.

Here's how to make it:

First of all, gather your ingredients.  You will need:
A large, open pine cone
vegetable shortening, lard, and/or suet
uncooked oats
bird seed
chopped dried fruit
sunflower seeds

Tie a few feet of string to each pine cone.  In a mixing bowl, combine a roughly a 1/2 cup shortening, lard, and /or suet with roughly 2 and 1/2 cups of uncooked oats and blend well, until you have a thick, paste-like mixture.  Apply mixture to the pine cones.  In a bag, combine bird seed with the chopped dried fruit and sunflower seeds.

Close and shake bag until well mixed.  Open the bag and gently place each pine cone in one by one.  Coat each one in the birdseed mixture. Let them sit on some waxed paper in the fridge for about 20 minutes, then hang them outside on the branches closest to your window. :)