Posts Tagged ‘Painting’

I really enjoy giving handmade gifts (like the fabric napkins that I posted about last December.) Those gifts are usually made by me. One of my nieces has a birthday at the end of November. In fact it was just a few days ago so I had to wait until it was passed before I posted about her gift this year.

Since she was very very young I have always made her pillowcases. A pillow case for each season plus summer, winter, fall, spring themed ones as well. I can still look into my magic ball and see more pillowcases in her future, but wanted to come up with something different for this birthday.

As I was snooping around a thrift store a few weeks ago, I saw a small jewelry box. It was pretty plain (sorry, I completely forgot the “before” photo) but it had potential. I knew I could give it a facelift, but it also appealed the the frugal and thrifty side of me as well.

My original plan was to paint the entire jewelry box white and then “white-wash” it with a metallic silver to give it some pizazz and sparkle. I started with the white. I found a can of white spray paint in our garage and decided to use it to make quick work of covering the whole box. It needed two coats and even then the spray paint wasn’t covering the wood very well.

not covering the wood very well at all

I decided to get out my acrylic paints and go for better coverage with those. That worked a lot better, but the spray paint left a glossy finish and the acrylic paints left a mat finish, so I knew then I would need to apply a clear glossy top coat in the end.

Once the paint was on it was time for the silver metallic “white-wash.” I started wiping the silver on and instantly was not happy with the look at all! It was not looking all shiny and sparkly like it was in my vision. As I wipe it off for the full “white-wash” effect, it even looked worse. Again, sorry, no photo because at this point I knew I wanted to get as much of the paint off as I could and needed to work quickly.

So I just took one huge step backwards and needed to paint those surfaces white again and come up with another plan. By the way, this was Tuesday and I intended to mail the box on Wednesday. Nope, that didn’t happen! Not with another coat of white paint, plus dry time, plus what ever design I was going to paint, plus dry time, clear coat, dry time – you get the picture. I knew if I wrapped it up in one of my fabric gift bags before it was completely dry that the bag would be stuck to the box when my niece went to open it – not good.

The jewelry box did have a cut design into the wood so I felt I was a bit limited and so I decided to follow that pattern with dots. Dots are super super easy to do, if you know the trick. Use the end of your paint brush – the end without the bristles. Dip it in your paint and then touch it the surface you want the dot on. The size of the end of your brush will determine the size of your dot. Be sure to do a few test dots before you do this on your actual project and depending on the medium you are using you may get 1-2 dots before you need to reload the end of your brush, or you may only get 1 dot. The silver metallic paint I was using was pretty thin, and I wanted a substantial dots with a sparkly impact, so I needed to dip the end of my brush in the paint for each dot.

I did get the front and top of the box done and was going to move onto the sides, but time was not on my side.

I hope that my niece will like her new jewelry box.

Have you ever given something old a much needed facelift?

Sincerely, Emily

You can see what else I am up to over atĀ Sincerely, Emily. The topics are varied, as I jump around from gardening to sewing to making bread or lotion and many things in between.




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Recently one of our autumn projects was to make these nifty painted leaves. I found this awesome tutorial via Pinterest, created by Little Wonder Days. We had all of the items available in and around our house and it was completely doable for a 7 year old with minimal guidance, and easy enough for preschool age. Of course we thoroughly enjoyed ourselves. But as we were looking at our pile of shaving cream leaves, a bulb went off in my head.

shaving cream painting

Candy canes and Christmas tree ornaments!!

These are some of the cutest and easiest decorations I’ve made. It seriously took us less than an hour to cut out and “paint” these little guys.


candy canesWe used red and pearl acrylic paints and pink cardstock for the canes. The ornaments were made with off-white cardstock, two different blues and pearl acrylic paints. Use whatever colors and designs you can dream up!

Start with shaving cream. Smooth out a pile of shaving cream, drizzle some of the paint on top, then swirl it around with a toothpick (reminded me of those brownies I used to make…).

Lay your cut-out flat on top of the paint, and press lightly. Allow to rest for a few seconds, then remove. Do about 4-5 at a time so the paint has some time to adhere to your paper. Then, take an old spatula (that you’ll no longer use for cooking) or a palette knife and gently squeegee the extra paint off.

When you drag the paint across with the squeegee, you’ll affect the pattern, so be mindful of the direction you choose to pull your paint.

Allow to dry and choose what to decorate! I even doodled some hardware with silver metallic Sharpies on the ball ornaments.

The Kid and I will probably be making hundreds of these and some tree over the next two months as Christmas gift tags.



Jennifer can be found at Unearthing this Life where she blargs about food, homeschooling, and life away from her farmette.

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