Tagged: upcycle

My Little Black Book

I’m going to let you in on a personal secret. I have a little black book. It contains information about some very special people I know. Some I have known for quite a long time while others I’ve only met once. Some I may have only been with for 5 minutes, but a girl has to keep up with all these people, right? Well, let’s just say that until two nights ago, I had a maroon book and it looked like this… 

Very Old Maroon Book

Very Old Maroon Book


This book is at least 20 years old and contains a very dirty secret. I’m going open the cover so you can see something extremely disturbing and shocking. Ready?




Okay, I’m busted. For a long time I have been stuffing business cards into this address book in absolutely the laziest, sloppiest way ever. “My name is Helen and I am a business card hoarder and stuffer.” Well, no more people. I am reforming myself and my method of business card storage. I hemmed and hawed about how to properly store all these cards so I can find them easily. I had not come up with any great solution until I found this at Dollar Tree….

Business Card Holder

Business Card Holder


Who knew that for just $1.00 I could solve my business card laziness? End of story right? Of course not. Anyone who has read two or more of my blog posts realizes that there is a major problem with this little black book. Have you guessed it yet? Hello people, it’s black. Just black. Plain black. Boring black. And you should know by now I don’t do plain and boring, right? So I grabbed some supplies and got to work.

Black and White Supplies

Black and White Supplies


Surprisingly I was able to pick the papers and image in less than a minute which truly is a record for me!

Lots of Pretty Embellies!

Lots of Pretty Embellies!


Then I looked through my treasure chest of embellishments and chose this set. These are beautiful 3-D stickers with glitter and rhinestones. There is just one tiny sticker I used but it makes a big impact on this project. 

The Chosen Embellies

The Chosen Embellies

Ready to see the final result? The Helenized version of the little black book? Okay, here it is…

The Helenized Little Black Book

The Helenized Little Black Book

Oh, but that’s not all. I’m going to bare it all. Here’s the inside…

No More Dirty Secrets

No More Dirty Secrets


This little project took less than 30 minutes and that included filing all the business cards into categories. I am so excited because now I will be able to locate the card I need without having a major guilt trip over my dirty little secret. I have been reformed people and you can be too. Just go to Dollar Tree and shell out $1.00 for the card holder ($2.00 if you include the 3-D sticker set) and set yourself free from your sloppy ways!











The Art of Raisins

Catchy title, right? I couldn’t think of anything that was closer to the truth but just as enticing. So be prepared…this post is not about making art with raisins. So you may jump ship now if you really had your heart set on dried fruit art.

Usually I don’t buy the single serving size packages of food because they tend to be expensive. There is always and exception, though, and in this case it is these little boxes of raisins.


I bought these as a snack to eat on the way to or from the gym. When I had devoured all the raisins I remembered an idea I got from this blog post:


I decided to give this little box a second life. First I covered the whole thing with masking tape.


I wasn’t too careful here, I just made sure all the torn ends were on one side, which I made the back. Then I covered the whole thing with gesso.


Once the gesso was dry I went to town with paint, stamps, graphics, rub-ons and stickers. This is what I came up with.


I like the result. So I encourage you to splurge on the single serving size boxes every once in a while and enjoy some dried fruit while saving big on art supplies!

P.S. I don’t recommend using stamps or rub-ons in the middle of the box as there is too much “give” and your image won’t come out well.

Can “Do”

Every once in a while I mention her in my blog posts.

Miss Holly Golightly

Miss Holly Golightly

What I have never mentioned before is her preferred dining choice, which is this.

Buju and Ziggy Cat Food

Buju and Ziggie Cat Food

Miss Golightly only eats 1/3 of a can of wet food a day, but we still seem to put a lot of her cans in the recycling bin. So of course I’m thinking, “What can I do with these empty cans? This is the first idea I came up with. After washing the can out really well (ewwww!) I lined the inside and out with interesting papers.


As you can see from this picture the papers don’t match, which was intentional and not just an error because I wasn’t wearing my glasses.

buju2Then I stamped some text on old ledger paper and glued it to the bottom of the can with an additional piece of ledger paper “just because”. Please excuse the darkness of these pictures. I seems my photographer, poor dear, is still being challenged by her new camera. Maybe one day she’ll catch up to 21st century technology, however, I don’t have my fingers crossed.
buju3Graphics were also randomly added to the outside of the can. I made this one look like a tag from a nature journal, at least that was my intention.

buju4A piece of twine and a button were inserted through a hole I punched in the edge of the can to make a hanging loop. Some sticks left over from my post “Cardboard, Twine, Stick” were glued to the back and some lace and sticks were glued to the bottom edge. You can see what’s coming next, can’t you?

buju5A fancy little bird wearing a rhinestone necklace and some flowers to complete the Can “Do”.

Now, I understand that not everyone is going to like this particular look, but the possibilities are endless for decorating your cans. So the next time you are about to throw away or recycle a cat food or tuna can (isn’t it the same stuff?) dust the cobwebs out and think of a way to create your own can “do”!!!

A little post script –  next week I will reveal the studio/office makeover!!!


Cardboard, Twine, Stick

Today I decided to write about a little project anyone can make. And unless you live under a rock, I’m going to assume you have the materials necessary. Hmmm, crafting with rocks, that may be my next post. Anyhow, here are the basic things you will need.

tagCardboard, twine and a stick. Anything else I show you can be altered or made with whatever you have on hand. So first you need to cut out some tag shapes from the cardboard. I chose oval because the template happened to be on my desk and I was too lazy to get up and get another one. (They say honesty is always the best policy!)

tag1I’m not sure why I included this picture. I believe if you’re smart enough to read my blog, you’re smart enough to trace and cut out some shapes. Next you are going to peel off some of the paper from one side of your tag in any old fashion. Just try not to peel it all off.

tag2Doesn’t this kind of look like a potato chip? You think I wouldn’t have said that considering I spent 1 1/2 hours at the gym today AND I just finished a big dinner. What am I thinking?  Okay, next you are going to stamp (or write) something on the back of the tag. And punch a hole for the twine.


OOOPs! I punch the hole on the wrong end. What a moron. Let’s try again.tag4Turn the tag over and paint the front any way you want. I brushed on a robins egg blue and then followed with a white wash. Do not paint too carefully unless you are going for a really “finished” look.

tag3Doesn’t that look like a potato chip with icing on it????? I know, finish the project and stop dreaming of food. Next stamp a picture onto the paper of your choice. I chose music because it suits the theme I wanted.

tag8Cut out the pictures. I like to leave a little of the white around the images because, well, I’m not that good of a cutter and it’s easier to leave some white. (Remember the honesty policy thing) Now attach pictures to the tag.


It’s cute, but it just needs a little something more. That’s were the stick comes in. Perch your bird on a stick and add a flower if you wish. Tie it with some twine and Ta daaaa.


Cute little handmade mixed media tags that cost you probably $0.00 to make! So don’t throw out that cardboard. Spend a few minutes “playing” with it and turn it into something cute and functional!