31 January 2014

Primitive Grungy Chocolate Easter Bunny

I was poking around in my office the other day, which also is a hiding place for some of my primitive goodies, and I came across some plain Chocolate Easter Bunny wax melts that I had tucked away. They really did look like chocolate too. Well I decided to hand rub them with some cinnamon, because that's just how I roll.

Primitive Grungy Chocolate Easter Bunny Melts

You know how much I love Grungy Goods, so why not grungy up some "chocolate bunnies?" I think they look super cute. I doubt the cinnamon will stay on there forever, but I was just doing it for fun anyway. They still smell chocolatey too. :) I'm not gonna melt them. I'm just gonna put them out for Easter because they'd look cute sitting in a basket, don't you think? Amazing what I can find in this office of mine!

24 January 2014

Spring Eggs Hang Tags Freebie

I don't know about you all, but in my neck o' the woods it's been downright C-O-L-D! And all I can think is, hurry up, Spring! So with that in mind, I've created these Primitive Spring Eggs Hang Tags.

Primitive Spring Eggs Hang Tags

For your download, which is in PDF format, you will get 4 of these hang tags on the sheet. There is a small watermark on the nest part of the tag in the printable version--but the blue watermark near the top of the jar is not on the printable. Just click on the image and that will take you to the download page. You may use these tags on your personal and/or commercial products--BUT, you may not sell these tags or claim them as your own. You also may NOT download the above digital image and use it--the image in the post is for preview purposes only. You may only use the printed version of these tags. Let me know if you have any questions on that.

And lets hope that Spring will be on its way soon. I've had just about enough snow and cold this winter to last me for quite awhile. But seeing that it's not even February yet, something tells me that Old Man Winter isn't done with us yet. Stay warm, folks!

20 January 2014

Primitive Sheep with Hearts

I had these two plain, resin Primitive Sheep sitting around and I wanted to do something with them to make them more interesting, and that could also tie into Valentine's Day. So I did some thinking and...

Primitive Sheep with Hearts

I decided that Mod Podge was the answer! I printed out some Primitive Hearts onto paper and cut them out, and then just Mod Podged them onto the primitive sheep. Voila! Instant Valentine's Day decor! Love my little sheep. :)

18 January 2014

Craft Pricing Worksheet for Handmades

I came across a blog post recently on the Aeolidia blog that has some very helpful information on how to price handmade goods for Wholesale and Retail. It's a whole post about Wholesale Pricing Tips and Formulas. Since I have a lot of followers who make primitive handmades to sell, I thought I'd share that link with you because I think you'll find it quite helpful.

I also wanted to share a downloadable worksheet freebie that I created when I had a business blog. I don't have that blog anymore, but I thought the worksheet is still a good tool for calculating prices for handmades. And seeing that Aeolidia blog post just made me want to share the worksheet here as well. 

Craft Pricing Worksheet Download

Just click on the preview image above and that will take you to the downloadable document, which is in PDF format. It's yours to download free, and I hope it will be helpful to you.

Just remember, there are lots of ways to compute prices for your handmades. If you don't like one, you can do a little Googling and find others that may work better for you. And be sure to check out the Aeolidia site a bit more as well, because they have other articles that may be helpful to you. They have another article called Wholesaling Handmade Items, and others that are full of great information.

13 January 2014

Grungy Valentine Treat Bags

With Valentine's Day fast approaching, I guess it's only appropriate to create some heart-themed goodies. So I've created these primitive Grungy Valentine Treat Bags to share with you.

Primitive Grungy Valentine Treat Bags

To make these Grungy Goods, you'll need some grungy'd up muslin bags, and you'll need some primitive graphics printed onto iron-on transfer paper. Just as a reminder, you can make your own Grungy Sauce using my Grungy Sauce Recipe. Create any designs/word combinations you'd like and print it onto your iron-on transfer paper. Be sure that if you use words you use the option to reverse the text when you print--otherwise your text will print backwards! I chose a cute prim gal holding some hearts, and also a primitive sheep with a heart on my bags.

Easy, peasy to make and great for gift-giving this Valentine's Day!

08 January 2014

Valentine Mason Jar Bowl Fillers

My head is sort of leaping ahead to Valentine's Day. I have some heart-themed goodies to share soon, but I wanted to share something also that doesn't involve hearts, but could still be a great Valentine's Day gift anyway.

You know I love Mason Jars, and I love coming up with new ways to create Primitive Gifts with them. So this time I've created some Valentine's Day Mason Jar Bowl Fillers. And while there are no hearts in this jar, the colors of the items inside are perfect for Valentine's Day.

Valentine's Mason Jar Bowl Fillers

There are three layers of primitive bowl fillers in this jar. The first layer, on the bottom, is bleached cedar roses. I love these because they are so rustic looking--but also very pretty. Then the next layer has some burgundy-red colored, grungy-looking balls. I happened to have some in my studio and I loved the color so I poured some in. Then I added some 1" cinnamon sticks for a nice, warm color on top. I topped the jar with a rusty tin lid, added a homespun tie, and added a longer cinnamon stick on the jar for a final touch.

This is all ready for gift-giving, and all the recipient has to do is pour them in a bowl and enjoy them! The cinnamon sticks will give a nice little natural scent too, which is an added bonus. I didn't add any fragrance oil because of of the burgundy balls; the oil would likely either eat away the color or make them run, and that wouldn't be any fun. But these aren't really meant to be scented anyway--they are pretty just as they are, don't you think?

You can make so many gifts with Mason Jars--just layer in your favorite bowl fillers, or even vintage items (buttons, lace, spools, keys) and do them up with a heart-shaped tag or something, and there is just no end to the ways you could make a gift for someone.

07 January 2014

Primitive Rusting Recipe

Sorry that I've been kind of absent of late. The holidays tend to take my attention to family, so I was not as active with my blogging as I normally am. I thought I'd start the new year though with a Primitive Recipe for rusting metal.

There are lots of recipes to rust metal. Some involve the use of bleach, which I prefer not to use. So the recipe I like uses simple ingredients you usually have on hand, and that aren't going to be too nasty to use. It will still smell gross, but it's a lot safer than using bleach. Although I still wear rubber gloves when I use this, just to be safe. I urge you to wear rubber gloves as well.

It's also important to note that not all metals will rust at the same rate. Iron rusts the best--but how often would we have iron items we need to rust? Just know that if you're rusting various items, they won't all look the same amount of rusty when this process is complete.

  • 1 16oz Bottle of Peroxide
  • 1 Cup Distilled White Vinegar
  • 1 TBSP Kosher Salt (iodized "table" salt just doesn't work right)
  • Items for rusting (safety pins, bells, nails, etc)
  • 2 Plastic Containers for the mixture--one container should have a lid
  • Old cookie sheet you won't use again (or a piece of cardboard) lined with paper towels
  • Plastic Spoon (not metal!)
  • Rubber Gloves

1. If you're using a plastic container like I do to do your mixing, poke holes in the lid. Your other container doesn't need a lid, but one of them does because it will serve as a strainer later on.

2. Add your Peroxide, Vinegar, and Salt to your container and stir. The vinegar and salt are going to be doing the rusting, by the way; the peroxide adds oxygen, which helps to speed up the oxidation process.

3. Add your metal items and stir again, then cover with the lid. Then set your container somewhere, away from pets and humans. It's going to smell, and you don't want pets or kids getting into it. It's good for it to get some direct sunlight, if possible. Leave the container set for a day. Stir your solution a few times during the day.

4. Put on your gloves again and then strain your metal items by pouring the liquid out thru the plastic lid of your container into your second plastic container. Once empty, spread your metal items onto your cookie sheet so they are in a single layer.

5. Let the metal items dry for a few hours, then turn them over to make sure they dry completely on both sides. Drying in the sun is very helpful--but do NOT put these in the oven. You don't want fumes from items to get in your metal oven. The items should get more rusty-looking as they dry.

6. Remember that not all items will rust at the same rate, nor will they all look the same. If you're unhappy with the finish you can repeat the rusting process. 

Here's an example of a variety of safety pins that I rusted:

Primitive Rusting Recipe

Now, what do you do with your leftover rusting solution? That's a good question. I've researched this a lot, on a variety of websites--from chemistry boards, to artist sites, to hobbyist-related and all sorts of sites in between. And the options I have found are varied.
  1. Dilute the solution with a large amount of water and pour down the toilet. I have done this in the past, and since my husband is a plumber, he said it was fine since the solution has been so diluted, and because we do not have any copper/metal pipes. If you're not 100% sure about your pipes, I would avoid this option.
  2. Pour into the solution a large amount of kitty litter. Once the liquid is absorbed, put it into a zip-lock bag and put in your trash.
  3. Pour into the solution enough Baking Soda to absorb the liquid; this will serve to neutralize the solution and solidify it so you can then put it in a zip-lock bag and throw it away.
  4. Seal the solution into a small container or jar and throw it away. 
Which disposal method you use is really up to you. I think you should use your best judgement or do some more research on your own. I personally also do not re-use my rusting solution. I feel that after the products are combined and their chemical reaction occurs, the solution isn't quite the same anymore. So I just do a lot of rusting at one time, and make new solution each time.

I also found another method of rusting using the same ingredients. So I'm gonna share that here. I haven't tried it, but at least it gives you another option.
  • With a spray bottle, spray items with white vinegar and allow to dry. Repeat on other sides.
  • Mix - 16oz hydrogen peroxide, 2oz white vinegar, and 1/2 Tbsp of salt in a spray bottle
  • Spray and watch the rust appear, allow to dry and then repeat for desired effect
If any of you try that particular method, please email me and let me know how it went. I think that would be great for doing a small number of items at a time. Happy rusting, everyone!

UPDATE: One of our readers (Marcia) wrote in to share some tips for rusting items that she uses with great success. Marcia suggests that you soak things in toilet bowl cleaner first, before rusting them. She says it takes the zinc coating off the items and they then rust a lot better. She also says she uses the cheapy The Works brand, lets the items soak for a few minutes, then rinses them off and dries them before putting them in the rusting solution. Marcia also uses an old toaster oven in the garage to bake her rusting items in for about 15 minutes. Thanks for your great tips, Marcia!