Glue-Resist Spider Web

smoothfoam spider web halloween decoration

Halloween is my favorite holiday. It’s a chance to be mysterious and a little scary. I love the decorating part more than the dress-up part! Last year I turned half my garage into a haunted house for the trick-or-treaters. It was simple with few effects, yet dark and unknown to the kids and adults. It was a hit! Since then I have been dreaming up new ideas and props, like this spider web idea – enjoy!


Any size Smoothfoam disc
Tacky glue
Black acrylic paint
Baby wipes or damp paper towels
Small paintbrushes, foam brush
Rubber spider
Straight pin, ruler

Processed with Moldiv

Use your ruler to press line indents into your disk creating even pie shapes. Cover those indents with thick lines of glue. Starting at the outer edge of the disk, draw the webbing detail in glue, working around toward the center. You can find spider web images online for reference. Let glue set until it is no longer soft and sticky. The tacky glue seems to work best as you want a ‘raised’ web when dry. Other glues either dry to a flat finish or remain sticky, and a hot glue gun could melt the Smoothfoam. When ready, paint the entire surface black.

Processed with Moldiv

Working quickly before the paint can fully dry, use the wet wipes to pull some of the black off the dried glue. Next, fill in the background with the paint and smaller brushes. When dry, push the straight pin through the rubber spider and attach onto the spider web. Display on a bookshelf, wall or in a haunted house! A black light will make the web glow ever so spookily!


Haunted House Halloween Decoration

Smoothfoam haunted house plaque

It’s never too soon to start thinking about Halloween decorations! The nights will start getting shorter, the leaves will be turning yellow and orange, and before you know it all the little trick-or-treaters are at your door! Here’s a fun haunted house decoration you can make that’s great for getting everyone in the mood Halloween!

Here’s what you will need for the haunted house:

Two 12″ x 12″ Smoothfoam scrapbook mounts
12″ x 12″ cardstock – Black and orange
HotWire Foam Cutter
Die-cutting machine
Dies – haunted house, scary trees, bat
Chipboard ghost sticker
Yellow acrylic craft paint
Paintbrushes, wedge sponge
Orange ink pad
Adhesives, pencil
12″ x 12″ shadowbox frame (optional)


Die-cut one haunted house using the setting, “fit to page.”

diecut haunted house

Punch the house out of the sheet and place the open negative image over one Smoothfoam sheet and trace around the inside edges onto the foam with a pencil.

Smoothfoam August 2


Cut along the pencil lines with the foam cutter. Cut large pieces away first to make handling and cutting easier. I cut just the overall shape of the house from the Smoothfoam, no need to try to cut all the tiny little details along the rooflines.

cutting Smoothfoam with hot wire

Glue orange cardstock behind the die-cut paper house to peek through the doors and some windows as shown, then glue the die-cut on top of the cut-out Smoothfoam house.

Cut a crescent moon with the hot wire from a scrap of the Smoothfoam and paint it yellow. Let dry.

Die-cut some spooky trees and a bat from the black cardstock.

Glue the orange cardstock sheet on top of the second Smoothfoam sheet for the background panel. Adhere the house, ghost, moon, trees and bat to the panel as shown.


Fairy Garden House

smoothfoam Fairy Garden House

This tiny DIY fairy garden house is a perfect way to add a bit of whimsy to your potted plants. So let’s invite the garden fairies to move in and stay a while!


Smoothfoam  3″ foam craft house
Makin’s Clay – Brown, White, Black, Green, Grape Leaf, Merlot, Yellow, Neon Pink
Makin’s Texture Sheet Sets: A and D
Makin’s Ultimate Clay Machine and Tool Kit
Cutting Mat
Tacky Glue
Green craft paint
Metallic Lustre – Iced Expresso
Scissors, paintbrush, craft knife, emery board, skewer

Mix small amounts of black and white clay to create gray. Roll through the Ultimate Clay Machine on setting #3 (slightly more than 1/8”). Place the cobblestone texture sheet over the flattened clay and press gently to transfer the texture to clay.

Smooth any raised seams on the Smoothfoam foam craft house with an emery board. Place the house onto the gray clay and cut around the house with a craft knife. Glue the clay to the back of the house and trim beneath roof line as needed.

Trim more pieces of cobblestone clay to glue to the sides and front of house. Smooth any seams in the clay with your fingertips.


Mix a small amount of Grape Leaf clay with Green and roll it through the machine. Press it with the wood grain texture sheet. Cut out the door shape and press it in place – if the clay is still moist, no adhesive is necessary, otherwise use glue. Roll a tiny brown ball of clay to add for a doorknob.


Roll out some brown clay and press with the shingle texture sheet. Cut strips to glue to the roof on the sides and front edge.


Roll out some Merlot clay and press with the brick texture sheet. Cut and glue pieces to cover the chimney.

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Use the skewer to make a hole in the bottom of the house. Glue a piece of grey cobblestone clay over the bottom, reinserting the skewer into the hole. Apply a light coat of Metallic Lustre over the entire house with your fingertip.

Paint the skewer green and let dry. Push it into the hole with a dab of glue

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Roll tiny strands and leaves of Green clay and press to the front of the house on either side of the door (if clay is still moist, no adhesive necessary; if dry, use glue.)

Roll small 3/8” balls of Yellow clay. Use the circles detail tool to impress the clay into flowers and add to stems on the house.  Use the clay pointed stylus tool to make small slices in the clay to resemble flower petals. Add tiny balls of Neon Pink to the centers of the flowers. Proudly display your DIY fairy garden house in a flower pot or in the ground!

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Lollilop Flower

smoothfoam lollipop flower

As summer comes to an end, I see the last of the flowers coming up. A friend of mine asked me for a kid-friendly flower project, so I thought using Smoothfoam to make this lollipop flower was the perfect idea! The kids LOVED it – it was fun and easy to make. Ages 3 and up can do this with help!


10″ Smoothfoam disc
6″ Smoothfoam disc
12″ Smoothfoam rod
2″ X 4″ X 4″ Smoothfoam block
3/4″ Smoothfoam balls
Acrylic craft paints: red, orange, yellow, dark green, light green, bronze
Craft glue, wood skewer, toothpicks
Chunky white frost glitter

I started by painting all of the Smoothfoam – the block is bronze, the rod is two blended shades of green, and the discs/balls are blended with red, orange and yellow. To make it more fun for the kids, I put two colors of paint in a plastic bag and just squished the 3/4″ balls around inside until coated. Set aside on a paper towel to dry.

While the two discs are still damp with paint, sprinkle on the glitter.

glittered smoothfoam discs

Once all is dry, layer and glue the two discs together. For the base and flower stem, glue the rod to block – for extra security, I used a long skewer to hold the two elements together, inserted from the bottom of the block. Use toothpicks and glue to attach the stem to the back of the flower. Glue a few metal washers or coins to the bottom of the block if needed to weight the flower so it stands straight and balanced.

Glue the balls to the outer rim of the larger disc to make “petals!”

The Very Hungry Caterpillar

The Very Hungry smoothfoam Caterpillar

Have you read the story of The Very Hungry Caterpillar who ate and ate and ate…and then turned into a beautiful butterfly? My Smoothfoam Very Hungry Caterpillar craft project is inspired by this book by Eric Carle.

My hungry little caterpillar was made using:

Six – 2″ Smoothfoam balls
Fine sandpaper
Acrylic craft paints – Olive green, aqua blue, red, gold, brown
Bamboo skewers
Craft glue
Craft knife
Mod Podge medium

the very hungry caterpillar



Lightly sand away the center seams of each Smoothfoam ball. To help the caterpillar sit without rolling, cut a slightly flat side in two of the balls. Use them as your first and last green balls in the caterpillar body.

Paint five balls olive green. For added dimension, stipple or sponge some aqua blue on top of the green. Paint the last ball red and add a cute little face with the gold, aqua and brown as shown. When all the paint is dry, seal the balls with a coat of Mod Podge.

Cut a bamboo skewer into 1″ pieces. Connect the balls together using the skewers and white craft glue. Cut the tip off of two skewers, paint brown, then insert into the top of the caterpillar’s head for antennae. Find other fun foam crafts for kids with Smoothfoam!

Charming Cottage Bookends

smoothfoam Cottage Bookends

Make that shelf in the reading corner more special for the kids with this cute little bookend – it’s a plain metal bookend you can find in an office supply store, altered with Smoothfoam! Use wood pieces, stone tiles, craft foam or stickers and decorate it to fit your style.

1″ Smoothfoam sheet 
Metal bookend
DecoArt Snow-Tex texture medium
Acrylic paints in your choice of colors
Stone mosaic tiles and small wood tiles or craft foam
Bead for doorknob
Tacky glue, double-sided tape
Toothpicks, cotton ball, sandpaper
Craft knife, palette knife, paint brush

Cut a rectangle from the Smoothfoam sheet that will cover the upright part of the metal bookend. Mark the center of the top and cut off the corners to create a point for the peak of the roof. Cut a rectangle that will cover the base of the bookend. Sand the cut edges of the Smoothfoam as needed to smooth out.

Cover the front and sides of the house shape with DecoArt® Snow-Tex. Let dry and paint blue. Paint the base dark green and sponge or dab with cotton ball in a lighter green. Paint a tan path on the base and a light blue door and windows on the house. Paint roof shingles in yellow. Glue the house to the base using toothpicks for extra stability. Glue the painted pieces for the shutters, window frames and bushes to the house and yard. Add more items if you like, such as a fence or flowers.

Glue stone tiles to the path and around the door. These tiles are a cast stone that you can shape with scissors. Use double-sided tape to adhere the house to the bookend.

Summer Travel Map – Oh, the Places You’ll Go!

DIY-Travel-Map-of-California-using-Smoothfoam-Sheets-JPriestHello! Today I’m sharing a idea for a DIY push pin travel map made with Smoothfoam sheets. Maps have been trending in home décor and I’ve seen cork maps and cork cutouts of maps in stores with pretty hefty price tags. I love the idea of customizing your décor to reflect your own life, not what a magazine or showroom tells you your home should look like. This summer travel map project is inspired by this trend, but also by my love for customization; you can make the map be about any part of the world where you’ve traveled!

I chose to make a map of my home state, California. We plan to move out of state in a few years, so we’ve been trying to visit all of the landmarks in California as much as possible. A fun way to remember your trips is to create a hanging display of them on the wall.


Using a Smoothfoam sheet as the base of this map makes it highly pinnable, not just to Pinterest, but you can also put pins in the Smoothfoam to mark the places you’ve visited. Add flags to the pins with the location name, date you visited, and names of the people you traveled with.

To create a custom DIY push pin travel map, gather the following supplies:

– 6″ x 12″ Smoothfoam Sheet
– Acrylic craft paints
– Paint brush
– Printed or diecut map of the area
– Pushpins

I used an electronic cutter to cut the outline of California from a piece of paper, creating a stencil that I used to paint the image of the state onto the sheet. If you don’t have an electronic cutter, print out a map from the internet, sizing it to fit on the 6″ x 12″ sheet. Cut out the map, trace onto the Smoothfoam, and then paint within the traced lines. Use pins to hold the map or stencil in place while painting or tracing. Click below for a slide show of each step.

Cut out little flags to adhere to pins to mark all of the places you visited. Place extra flag pins in an envelope on the back of the map to use as you visit more places. Attach your travel map to the wall with removable adhesive strips.

If I ever go to Europe, I am so making one of these again!

Thanks for stopping by the Smoothfoam blog today. For more crafty goodness, visit my blog at Just JP.


Show Your School Pride!

Smoothfoam School Pride signOur schools here in Brighton, Tennessee started this week, so it’s time to show our school pride! I thought I would make a display piece for my young friends Ethan and Preston, who attend Austin Peay Elementary School, home of the Patriots.

Smoothfoam sheets made this project quick and easy, and although this mascot is in primary colors, using the Creme Wax on top gives it a rustic look that will be attractive in any boy’s room. The hand-carved effect also allows you to be a little less-than-perfect when applying the lines and stars.

This really is an easy-peasy, get-it-done-in-an-afternoon project. The hardest part was trying to decide if the mascot colors on the school website were true, especially since the patriot’s hat was purple, and the blue on the drum was actually teal. I took some artistic license and made both of them a nice patriotic blue, which made me happy.

Now, go make your own School Pride sign for your kids. I guarantee they will love it!


1/2″ thick Smoothfoam sheet
1″ thick Smoothfoam sheet 
Craft paints in school colors
Americana Décor Creme Wax – Espresso
Walnut ink
8.5″ x 11″ white copy paper and cardstock
12″ x 4″ blue cardstock
Tracing paper
Paint brushes
Black permanent marker
Hot knife
Dimensional paint markers – black, cream
Extra-strength craft glue
Gel medium
Pencil, masking tape, sand paper


1.  Print out your school mascot on white copy paper. Tape the image to your table top and tape the tracing paper on top. Trace the image onto the tracing paper with a black permanent marker.

2.  Lightly shade the back of the tracing with pencil (to make it easier to see) then tape the tracing, face up, to the 1/2″ Smoothfoam sheet.

Smoothfoam School Pride tracing back CWindhamSmoothfoam School Pride tape tracing paper to SF CWindham

Trace the image on to the Smoothfoam, being careful not to apply too much pressure. You won’t get a perfect outline, but you’ll be able to see the lines.

Smoothfoam School Pride trace lines onto SF CWindhamDraw over the lines on the Smoothfoam sheet with the black permanent marker.

Smoothfoam School Pride tape trace Sharpie onto SF CWindhamCut out the image with the hot knife. Use a piece of sandpaper to remove any rough edges.

Smoothfoam School Pride cut with hot knife CWindhamPaint the mascot image with two coats of craft paint, including the edges, allow to dry and then apply a coat of gel medium and allow to dry again. The gel medium ensures that your colors won’t absorb too much of the Creme Wax in a later step.

Smoothfoam School Pride Paint imageCWindhamPrint out your title on white cardstock, then mount to blue cardstock. Sponge the edges with walnut ink.

Smoothfoam School Pride sponge image CWindhamMeasure how much of the 1″ Smoothfoam sheet you need for the sign backer by placing the mascot and title on top. Cut out the backer with a craft knife.

Paint the sign backer red (or whatever color matches your mascot), allow to dry and then apply the Creme Wax with the foam paintbrush. Wipe it off with a paper towel before it dries. Repeat the waxing process with the mascot.

Tip: I used a small 6″ fan with a clip to attach it to my table edge to dry things quickly.

Go over the lines of the mascot image with the black dimensional paint marker, including the edges. Draw the stars around the drum with the cream paint marker. Allow all to dry.

20150809_175438Smoothfoam SchoolPride Stars CWindhamGlue the mascot and title block to the sign backer. Display on a small easel or glue a ribbon loop to the back of the Smoothfoam to display on a wall.

Back to School Teacher Gift

Smoothfoam teacher gift pencil holder

“I like the process of pencil and paper as opposed to machine. I think the writing is better when it’s done in handwriting.” —Nelson DeMelville

With the arrival of August comes the back-to-school supply list. Why not send your child off to school with a great teacher’s gift – a creative DIY foam pencil holder using a Smoothfoam cube! The teacher will appreciate it, and you and your child can squeeze in a little last-minute summer crafting fun. Learn how to make your own back to school teacher gifts below.

You will need:

3″ Smoothfoam cube
Acrylic paints – dark chocolate, tomato red and antique gold
3 foam paintbrushes
Stencil of fall leaves
Orange glitter glue
12 pencils
Knitting needle

1.  Paint the cube brown. Allow the first coat to dry and paint a second coat.

2.  Position the stencil on the cube and dab a bit of yellow and red paints over the stencil.  Allow the colors to mix together a bit. Once dry, touch up with a small brush if needed.

3.  Add the veins of the leaves with glitter glue. Do one side at a time and allow to dry before adding veins on another side of the cube.

4.  Determine the top of the cube and punch 12 aligned holes with the knitting needle, or a screwdriver works too. Add the pencils and you have an adorable teacher’s gift!