Gift Box Decoration: 3D Stickers Far Better than Bows!

Did you ever have trouble finding a bow that fits the tiny gift box of a pair of earrings, brooch or necklace? Even when you get one do you find it difficult to handle the box with it? What about the ribbon?

We can surely use it in place of bow, but tying it is also complicated because of its slipperiness. We can avoid all such problems with a simple 3d sticker. Do not mistake it for the one found in a 5 year old kid’s diary.

This is the sticker made for adults and mostly used in scrapbooking. Actually, scrapbook hobbyists call it embellishment. Whatever the name is, arts and craft stores, sells it in multiple varieties. Michaels usually has them on sale. At dollar stores, they are even cheaper. No worries about quality. They all perform far better than bows.
If the gift recipient is your mom or any other older lady, try picking a flower sticker. It looks classy and also adds more warmth to the gift. For romantic gifts, mostly the roses and daisies do the magic. How you wish to use it is up to you. I noticed that the sticker can go even without ribbons. But sometimes I prefer the glossy ones beneath the flower to give the box formal appearance.   

Quick and Easy Ways to Use Nail Polish For Arts and Crafts

Have you ever noticed how nail polish is more durable than other paints? It has a silk like texture which after drying out turns glossier. Not all art and craft paints have that same capability. Just think about acrylic paint. It does not look very nice in dry form. To shine better, it needs topcoat. So can we replace it with nail polish? No, because most projects need a lot of color. Our nail paint is usually too less in its bottle.

Conversely, miniature objects can definitely be adorned with it. It has already been mentioned in one of the Girly Stuff posts, but not with much detail. We only found out how to paint a sticker with nail polish. That is why, we have this post today. Here we will take a look at other different ways through which nail polish can be used in various tiny arts and crafts projects. So let’s get started.

Easter egg for decoration:
Any egg that you want to use only for decoration purpose and not for eating can be painted with nail polish. Just take a look at the picture here. The green paint beneath the stars is actually nail polish of NYC. But yes, for this project, choose the tiniest egg. It will ease the painting task. Also do not forget to empty the egg. Do not try to paint it in one sitting. Instead start from the top, allow it to dry out and then touch the bottom portion.

Protect and beautify a tiny tree stem: 
Do you use tree stems in your arts and crafts projects? If yes you must know that in bare form they remain vulnerable to bugs. Nail polish can totally take care of this problem. So get stems painted with a nail paint of your choice. To keep their looks natural, it is best to go with either nude brown or lime shade. The top coat can also be helpful.

Floral design for greeting cards: 
Nail paint can give a completely professional touch to a greeting card. Does your plan include floral patterns? If yes nail art polish might help you achieve it better. However, on glossy greeting card papers, it will not work too well. In that case, you have to choose only the traditional nail polish.
Nail polish on polymer clay object: 
You do not require painting an entire polymer clay project with nail polish. The material already has nice color. But if you wish you can make eyes out of black nail polish for your animal or human figures. This is extremely easy and above all saves time. All you need to do is to apply two tiny nail polish dots above the nose of your figure. Do remember that you can perform this task only after the figure has come out of the oven fully baked. Another thing worth mentioning here is that nail polish’s topcoat forms a nice gloss on tiny polymer clay objects.

Tips/Warnings
  • Nail polish cannot be used on printer papers and fabric. 
  • It is important to keep all the windows in a room open where the painting with nail polish is taking place. Otherwise, the strong smell of the nail polish will keep disturbing. 
  • For arts and crafts, it is best to go for cheap nail polish.

Learn About Craft Smart Polymer Clay

Craft Smart polymer clay is produced by Michael’s itself. That is why; it is either equal or cheaper than those made by other brands. According to the label, the bar is 2 ounce, soft and non toxic. For the time being, it is available at 15 major colors. Michael’s thinks it is perfect for bead creation. But how exactly is its quality? You will know it a second from my review.

I actually, randomly grabbed the Craft Smart polymer clay in black. I did not care about the brand.  Only after using the bar I realized that it was very different from the popular ones. The texture of this specific polymer clay matches plastic. There is no way I will say that it is very soft though. The gist is that it is tougher and dryer. Unfortunately, this hinders cutting and conditioning any pieces from it especially if its size is bigger. Problems, of course, do not end there.

The material simply does not have good binding properties for which its tinier pieces fall off especially during conditioning and shaping. Absence of flexibility is next. Bending a piece from it results in breaking.  The color, on the other hand, is not dry enough. I have seen the black one leaving marks all over the project table.

As for the bead making process, it is not easy with this clay at all. I actually did try to use this Crafts Smart one to make them, but each time I tried to make holes in them they either cracked or gave off the tinier pieces. Eventually, I just had to cancel the idea of making anything with it. But yes, I did use its small pieces to make eyes, hair and other micro objects. This is where the polymer clay does not seem to display any problem.

What about the result of baking it? Well, I will not say it is bad.  The baked result is very normal. The clay just hardens properly and continues to stay durable.  However, it seems that the remaining raw clay bar has to be used quicker because over the course of time its dryness intensifies. This makes the making of tiny objects impossible.

Overall, I will never recommend anyone to buy Crafts Smart polymer clay. It is not even appropriate for those under 10 since it is tough and leaves the project table completely covered with tiny pieces and paint markings. But I am slightly impressed by the 2 ounce weight and baked quality. Only because of this, I give this polymer clay 2 out of 5 stars. 

If anyone has found a softer version of this clay please use the comment box to let us know about its quality. Your information will be greatly appreciated.

5 Best Easy to Follow Valentine’s day Gift Making Tutorials From Youtube

This is the 200th post of Forest for Women. I am going to celebrate this moment with you with helpful tutorial videos. Valentine’s Day is quite near. At the moment, one thing we have in mind is giving gifts to the ones we love the most.

Did you know that no diamond or gold can be compared to a gift we make with our own hands? Yes, it is true. But one biggest advantage of the entire homemade concept is control. When we sit down to make a gift we can practice more control over how it should be.

It does not matter if you lack imagination or creativity. Tons of gift making ideas are now floating in this virtual world. Here we will look at some of them. Thank to every inventor. You have proved that you have a big heart by sharing the tutorials with us.
 
 1. Valentine’s Day Bunny By GentlemanBunny

Why go to Hallmarks to buy a keepsake present? Look how easy it is to make such a thing right at home. If you wish to make this Valentine’s day bunny I would recommend you to use Sculpey III pastel colors for it. Avoid Crafts Smart because it is a bit too tough. Now notice that the seat of the bunny. It is made with the help of cookie cutter. If you do not have it at home just go with a square shaped seat. For this, all you will need is a knife or thin ruler.

2. Valentine’s day Puzzle By HolidashVideo

This is an extremely easy, but cute and clever gift idea that you can do right at home.  If your partner is into indoor games it will keep him busy in a romantic way. However, it might become hard for you to find blank puzzle pieces. They are not always available everywhere. Still try out HobbyTown or simply look for white colored puzzles in normal stores. Spray painting them can hide their original images.

3. Be my Valentine Keychain by xLausa

Do you wish to make a Valentine’s day keychain or necklace? Follow xLusa’s instructions. She will also show you how to put add a message to the gift. Now here is my tip, in order to save the plastic tape and thin clay from bubbling and burning in the oven do not bake the object more than 5 minutes.  Do not worry thinking that it will keep the clay raw. The heat that gets into it will keep baking it even in room temperature.

4. Valentine’s Heart Earrings (Studs) By Omoiiki

This next tutorial is done with air dry ceramic.  I have seen it at Michael’s near polymer clay bars. If you cannot find it go with polymer clay. Both the ingredients will yield to same result.  The pins and heart shaped jewels are available at Michael’s, Wal-Mart and majority of the fabric stores.

5. How to Make Cupid’s Heart Soap by GoPlanetEarth

So what if you do not like clay and paints? Can you still make a gift for your friends or lover? Of course, yes! Try out this tutorial of GoPlanetEarth to make soap gifts for them.  As you watch the video you will come across the clear soap base ingredient. Normally, it is also known as “melt and pour” soap bases. Some stores sell them in pounds. The advantage of adopting for this kind of project is that they save you from turning into a chemist! In other words, you will not have to deal with many other lab compounds that go in soaps. Soap bases are readymade and thus they are purely harmless. 

10 Ideas to take Full Advantage of Old, Faded and Torn Clothes

Like it or not, all clothes come towards an end time. While many of them no more can compete against those in the trend, others just become faded and torn. What can be done about those clothes? Can they be reused for something else? Fortunately, yes, there are actually many ways to take advantage of them.  We will discuss 10 of them in this post. 

1. Sell your old clothes online
Hard to believe, but the most exciting fact about used clothes is that they always have buyers and locations where they can be sold. The best among all is eBay. It can never go wrong. In fact, eBay can help you make $5 to $20 dollar out of your used clothes. But there are certain tricks on how to really be attractive to the buyers. It is all on the clean pictures of the clothes. If their fabrics have defects it must be mentioned under the description. Honesty is the key! Craigslist can also be taken as best if you do not want to share your profit with anyone.

2. Donate the clothes to charity organizations for tax deduction
In United States, items like clothes donated to charity are tax deductible. So if you think selling clothes at eBay or Craigslist is a hassle you can try this donation idea. This is actually much easier. Some charity organizations like Salvation Army and Vietnam Veterans of America will pick up your donations directly from your home and hand you their receipt right away. But of course, you have to make sure to give them call for this job.

3. Revamp your clothes to wear them again
If you are good with sewing you can change some of your clothes into something different so you can wear them again. Usually, a long skirt can be turned into a pair of pants or mini skirt. Similarly, a pair of pants can be turned into shorts.

4. You can always wear the old clothes at home
Feel free to wear your old and even torn clothes at home especially if you have no guests around. This is completely natural and universally accepted law of home! No trend can ever break it.

5. Make purses and organizers out of them
Some clothes can be changed into organizers for other things like pencils, scissors, and so forth.  For this, all you have to do is create pockets out of them.

6. Totally torn clothes can be used for making things for Barbie dolls
Not much sewing experience is needed to make dresses, bedspreads and pillows for Barbie dolls. But yes, you will need fabric. Instead of getting it from store, use the one that make up your torn skirt or blouse. This is actually a fun project. My sister is the one who gave me this idea when we were kids. 


7. Save the little pieces of your torn clothes for arts and crafts projects
You will notice that many of your dresses and blouses have beads, ribbons, bows and flowers. Take them out and save them. They will become helpful in your arts and crafts projects. But this is not all. They can also be used for giving a stylish look to gift boxes. Moreover, the beads can come in handy for jewelry making.

8. Keep them for cleaning things around home
It is not practical to keep spending money on kitchen towels and wipes. Save it all by turning your clothes into napkins to clean things around home. They are washable and thus, require not to be disposed of.

9. Use them as cushions
Moving to a new house is a tiring task. So many things are need to be put inside the boxes. Some even need extra cushions. To make this job possible, instead of getting bubble wraps, you can use your old clothes.

10. Use the fabrics of these clothes on your artificial flowers
Clothes that have white fabric or nets can provide uniqueness to the flowers you have in the vase. So tear them up to stick a portion of them inside the flower vase. Apparently, they can also be turned into ribbons to tie the flowers so they do not fall of or stay disorganized.

Trick to Getting Beads At Cheaper Price for Jewelry Making

It is very strange that beads can almost have the prices of real necklaces and earrings. In fact, in majority of the stores, they can be as high as $10. That sure is discouraging for those who make jewelry right at home.

But the truth is that you really do not need to empty your wallet for them. There are simply other ways to get them at really lower prices.The information given here is extremely valuable. So you really do not want to miss it.

You might have seen the Michaels craft store in your city. It is the haven for getting beads. But a very disappointing fact is that, even in this store, their prices can be quite high. Even coupons are not available for them. Still there is a way to get them at cheaper price from this store. Just wait for the clearance sale. It always lowers the prices of your beads. But you have to make sure that you reach Michaels on time. Too many jewelry makers always keep their eyes open for this kind of sale.

But even better than Michaels is the eBay store. You cannot go wrong with this one. Majority of the beads here are available at “buy now” format. Sometimes you can also bid, but it will usually lead you to a win-win situation, for their prices can be as less as $3. Moreover, many sellers include free shipping feature for their stores. So shopping for beads is best at Ebay.

You should also keep track of what is available at dollar stores. Sometimes they can be a great source for buying beads at just $1. But they usually bring less number of packs. So if you do not buy what you like right away you might not find it next time when you visit the store.

Amazon.com is not bad either. However, you need to effectively do your search in order to find beads at cheaper price on there. If you get lucky Amazon will give you good result like 25 beads at 0.82 cents.

Again, remember, you really do not need to spend $10 on beads. That actually is called rip off. That amount of money can easily get you a fine ready-made jewelry instantly.

How to give Makeover to a Dull Looking Foam Sticker (Part 2)

This tutorial involves a bit of messy tasks. There is one thing we will use here that you might not have at home right now. So in order to follow it, you will have to do a bit of shopping.

Of course, not much money you have to spend on it. Here we go now:

Step 1: Just like before, place the foam sticker on your craft project board.
Step 2: With the help of a brush, apply tacky glue thinly over the sticker.
Step 3: Sprinkle loose glitters over the board. Color is of your choice.
Step 4: Next, place the glue filled part of the sticker over the glitter.
Step 5: Now take the sticker out of the glitters. At this point, your sticker should look glittery.
Step 6: Wait for the glue to dry off.
Step 7: Apply a coat of sealer over the glittery part of the sticker. This will prevent the sticker glitters from falling off.
Step 8: Dry off the sealer.
Step 9: Place the sticker on anything of your choice.
Note:
-If you have pumpkin shaped foam stickers use bronze colored loose glitters over them.
-Glitters of different colors can be mixed together are great for sharpening the look of foam stickers.
-Do not try acrylic paint over stickers. Otherwise, they will look duller.

How to give Makeover to a Dull Looking Foam Sticker (Part 1)

Foam stickers are flexible for all kinds of arts and crafts projects. But sometimes they can look quite dull in their ordinary colors. So it is a good idea to give them makeover. What can you use to make it possible? Perhaps, nail polish? Yes, the paint we use on our nails can be great for foam stickers.

Just see below how to do it. In this tutorial, we will use the skull and bones foam sticker.  So it can turn into a perfect décor for this Halloween.

Step 1: Place the sticker on your craft project board.
Step 2: Paint it with a nail polish of your choice. It is okay to go with 2 to 4 coats. Look at the nail paint I have chosen. It is the brown color from Sally Hansen.
Step 3: Let the paint dry on the sticker. Do not even think of touching it at this point. Wait at least 16 to 18 minutes.
Step 4: place the sticker anywhere you like after taking off its wax paper.
The sticker was too small and that is why, the pictures came bad!
Painting foam sticker with nail polish is an easy task, but the result you will get from it will be marvelous. The painted sticker will look lively and shiny. Yet if you don’t find yourself satisfied with the outcome you can  take advantage of the tutorial part 2.

What to Expect from Sculpey III Polymer Clay

Sculpey III also known as Sculpey 3 is said to be that one specific polymer clay that is great for bringing out details in any miniatures. I got myself its mulitpack 12 pastel colors. It came in a box and cost me something like $10. I thought it was a good deal. But was working with it easy? Let’s find out here.

In the beginning, I was quite excited to see the 12 colors in one box. Each was 1 ounce which I thought was not so bad. Taking them out made me more hopeful. They just did not look bright, but also glittery. Such look is actually elegant to me, for sometimes they can go without the glossy coats. But there was something different about Sculpey III. It was way too soft.

One little press just ruined the clay that I rolled into a ball. Sometimes it even got stuck to the paper on which I placed it. This was definitely troublesome for me. So that entire statement that it is great for detailing is not true. Also since they are so soft they cannot be used for making canes. But yes, once they came out of the oven baked as figures they looked just fine and durable. Another thing is that this polymer clay is great for creating realistic looking whip cream, ice cream, pie and other desserts. This basically allows me to say that Sculpey 3 does not completely lack quality.
But if you are a beginner never get it is multipack of pastel colors. The reason behind this is that the box does not include the black and red. They are quite essential in creating eyes and hair for miniatures. Also remember that by using Sculpey 3, you will not be able to master the art of giving details to whatever you make.

Because of all this, I would say that Scupley 3 is like side dish. In other words, it is best for giving tiny details to figures we make by using tough polymer clay (other brands).  And this let's it receive 3 out of 5 stars from me. 

How to Make Glittery Colorful Paper

Paper making is beneficial and at the same time fun. It allows you to be good to the environment. Think recycle! Similarly, the creative hands can get to satisfy the urge to create. Actually homemade papers can be used to make greeting cards, notebook and plenty of ornamental items. But in today’s tutorial, you will not just learn how to make those papers, but also how to make them elegant enough so that they show off your hard work and taste in your arts and crafts projects.

Things Required

Blender
Used papers (any kind)
Tissues (Patterned is better)
Medium rectangular shaped net
Plain glitters (Any color)
Water
Instructions:
1. Tear up the papers and tissues into small pieces.
2. Transfer these torn pieces to the blender along with a few pinches of glitter.
3. Pour water in them. Only half the jar of water is recommended here, for you do not want your papers and tissues to turn watery.
4. Next, blend until they have turned creamy. It is important to mention here that not all paper pieces will be mixed. Some pulps will still remain. But do not worry. Let them stay.
5. Transfer the creamy mixture to the net and spread evenly.
6. With your hand press the mixture against the net to remove excess water. As you do this make sure there is no hole in between the mixture.
7. Last, keep the net under the hot sun for the mixture to harden and turn into paper.

How to Make a Multipurpose Polymer Clay Cartoon Animal Body

Last time, we learned in two different articles how to make a polymer clay multipurpose animal head. Today, we will learn the technique of making the entire body. What is fascinating about it is that this portion can be used for animals such as lions, tigers, cats and even dogs.

Of course, in such cases, you have to make sure that the head we made in the past has been given mane (for lion), wild brown and orange marks (for tiger) or dog ears. But after what making the body today by using the head we created previously, we will get what is in the picture on the right.

 Now for the body, just follow the steps given here.
~Things Required~
Polymer clay of two different colors (the ones used for making the animal’s head and mouth before)
A paper cutting knife or thin nail file
Blank printer paper where you will work with your polymer clay
Sliced tooth pick (If you cannot make it just use the toothpick itself, but make sure you cut it off into half)
A good art and craft glue (Make-It Mosaics glue Preferably)
The head of the animal

Step 1: Take a small amount of the polymer clay (color: mouth) and roll it into a ball.

Step 2: Now just roll one side of your polymer clay ball with your finger. Keep it thicker. In other words, it should not be rolled into a long snake or anything. We are basically doing this so we get a neck for our animal.

Step 3: Make sure that your end product looks like what is in the picture. Notice that since we did not roll the other side of the ball it has turned into a cone like shape. Basically, this is what you must keep in mind. Your animal body must be of cone shape.

Step 4: Now make your polymer clay body stand with its neck area facing upward. Give the body a gentle press so it keeps standing up without your help anymore. This way you will be also make its flat which we will use in our next step.

Step5: Now with the help of your knife or file, create a small opening at the bottom of the animal body. Just follow what is in the picture.

Step 6: Then make another opening. At this point, the body must look like a ghost from Pacman video game.

Step 7: Make the body stand up again. You have just finished making the legs of the polymer clay cartoon animal. The notion is that it is sitting.

Step 8: Now take a tiny bit of the polymer clay bar whose portion you used to make the head. Make a snake out of it by keeping one side of it slightly thicker. This is our tail.

Step 9: Stick the thicker part of the tail behind the body of the polymer clay animal.

Step 10: Make the body stand up again. And adjust the tail by bringing its end part in front of the body. This step is optional. How you want to keep the tail is completely up to you.

Step 11: Stick your toothpick piece in the center of the animal neck.

Step 12: Now dab some glue to the toothpick. This is for safety purpose. We do not want the head to come out after all.  This is optional.

Step 13: Stick the head to the toothpick and press it so it adheres to the neck. Your animal now is now done. Wait 12 hours before baking it. We want the glue to completely dry out.

How to Secure a Craft Project Containing A Real Egg

Last Easter I wanted to give my boyfriend a token of 2011 as a present. My eyes were on the egg. I wanted it to be real. I knew it was going to turn into a scary present. What if it broke into pieces on his way home? But a little walk at Michael's made me discover something.

It was a very small plastic showcase that cost $1.29. I just had to bring it home.
I placed my egg work inside it with the help of glue and then just closed the case. The result was a secure present ready to stay with my boyfriend for many years.


Lesson: Your finished egg project must always be kept in a transparent container. Otherwise, you will stay with the fear that it will break anytime.

How to Make A Polymer Clay Multipurpose Cartoon Animal Head -Part 2


Today we will just give a nice face to the head we made yesterday. It is not at all difficult to do. But you will need a tool. The image below is of a file that I got from a cheap manicure set I bought just to use in my art and craft projects.

 If you do not have one like this you will need a toothpick and a thin bladed knife, preferably the one used for cutting papers. Other things you will need are polymer clay bar pieces of two different colors. One must be of darker color. The other one must be of lighter color. The ones we are using here are violet and French blue. Once you get them all,  just follow the given steps.
Step 1: Poke small hole in each ear part with your pointed tool.

Step 2: Then for the whiskers, you will simply poke two lines on both sides of the face. Make sure they are all of similar length.

Step 3: Roll a small ball from the lighter colored polymer clay.
Step 4: Flatten it. If possible give it an oval shape.

Step 5: Now place this flattened clay on the center bed of the cat's face.

Step 6: Poke a line on the this clay vertically. By doing this, you have just created the mouth of the cat.

Step 7: Take a tiny piece of your darker colored clay and roll it into a ball.

Step 8: Place it on the top of cat's mouth.

Step 9: As for the eyes, try to go for black beads or black colored polymer clay to give the cat more professional look. We used two pieces of brown polymer clay here because we ran out of the black one. Another thing you can use is acrylic paint.

As for the body of the cat, there are many ways you can make it. But another time, we will take a look at the easy technique.

How to Make A Polymer Clay Multipurpose Cartoon Animal Head -Part 1

Creativity has immense possibilities. Polymer clay is just one simple material that allows it to bloom. Almost everything can be made out of it. But one that interests everyone is the creation of  animals. Good news is that it is not that difficult to do. This is especially true for cartoon or kawaii polymer clay animal figures. However, a complete tutorial on that can seem too overwhelming.

There is just so much to learn. That is why, today, we will concentrate just on the shaping of the cartoon animal head. 

Note that this is not going to be just any ordinary head. The truth is that what we will come up with today can fit cat, lion, tiger, monkey and even a bear figure. The list is endless. So lets get started: