Photo cube ornament

smoothfoam-cube-ornament

This photo cube ornament is quick and easy to make with your favorite papers, punches and embellishments. I started with a 3″ Smoothfoam cube and 3″ squares of scrapbook paper. You can drill a hole through the center of the cube with a hot wire tool or just use a large wood skewer. Push it carefully through the cube from top to bottom, pull it out and push it through a few more times all around the original hole to make it a bit larger. Be prepared to wipe up some foam crumbs.

smoothfoam cube

You can adhere the paper to each side of the cube with tacky glue or a gluestick, but I just used pearl-head straight pins in the corners. Push them in at an angle toward the center of the cube. Cut slits or punch a small hole in the center of the papers you choose for the top and bottom. Punch out shapes from cardstock for framing small photos and embellish however you like. Fold long pieces of ribbon in half and push the folded end (loop) through the hole with the skewer from the bottom up to the top. Tie off the ribbons with knots or bows at the top and bottom to secure in place for hanging.

smoothfoam-cube-ornament-top

Birthday Party Glasses

smoothfoam birthday party glasses

My (much) older and wiser sister is turning 60. Being the sweet little sister that I am…I thought I’d make and model a pair of “special” birthday party glasses to embarrass, I mean, celebrate her.

cutting the foam 6113

Supplies:

Smoothfoam sheet
Acrylic paint
Craft knife, paintbrush
Decoupage medium
Superfine glitter
Wood dowel
Paper flowers

Print large numbers from your computer and cut them out to make a template. Tape the numbers together, then trace them onto the Smoothfoam sheet and cut them out with a craft knife, leaving them connected in the center.

Paint the numbers – I chose a lipstick pink. After they have dried, coat them with decoupage medium and sprinkle with superfine glitter.glittering the numbers 6130

Decorate the glasses with white paper flowers. Paint a thin wood dowel gold paint and push it into one side of the glasses as a handle.

60's glasses 6150 2

Tower of Blocks Centerpiece

Smoothfoam tower of blocks centerpiece

I love my new tower of blocks as a centerpiece for my table or kitchen island – it shows off all the cool monoprints I’ve been making. Create a themed tower of blocks for party table decoration!

I have been doing a lot with monoprinting on cardstock and now I have a PILE of cool prints and didn’t know what to do with them all. So this project was designed to use a bunch of prints in a creative way. Check out the monoprinting tutorials online to see all the possibilities for printing your own themed or patterned papers using acrylic paints and stencils.

Supplies:

8″ Smoothfoam cube
5″ Smoothfoam cube
3″ Smoothfoam cube
Gel Press™ Printing Plate
Acrylic paints
Stencils, paint brushes, brayer
White cardstock
Craft glue
Permanent markers
Stamps, inkpads

Mono Print

After your monoprints are dry, trim them into squares to fit each side of your Smoothfoam cubes. Treat the monoprinting like a background and then stamp your favorite focal image on top.

smoothfoam cubes

Glue a square to each side of the cube, plus the top, and let dry.

stamping on monoprinted paper

Color the corners of each cube with a marker and you’re done! Stack the cubes in a tower – glue in position if you want, or leave them loose for more versatility. A single decorated cube makes a great riser for a little statue or art piece. I love pears, so I added a faux pear to the top.

tower of smoothfoam cubes

Spring Chickadee

smoothfoam easter chick

Spring is nature’s way of saying, “Let’s Party!” — Robin Williams

Several of my neighbors raise chickens in their backyards. The anticipation of waiting for each little spring chickadee to hatch is behind the inspiration for this project to decorate your Easter table or to celebrate spring in general. It’s also a fun way to use your scraps of spring-themed paper.

You will need:
One 3″ Smoothfoam ball (cut in half)
One 6″ Smoothfoam disc
Two 12″ x 12″ sheets of spring-themed paper
One 1″ circle punch
Tacky glue
2-1/2″ googly eyes
3 yellow pipe cleaners
20″ length of 1″ wide yellow polka dot ribbon
Straight pins, scissors, toothpicks

Punch 60 circles from your spring paper. Working concentrically from the outer edge into the center, glue the circles to the disc, overlapping the circles slightly as you go.

Take three toothpicks and push them deep into the back of the half-ball for the chick’s head. Spread some glue onto the back. Center the head over the disc and push down, allowing the toothpicks to pierce into the half disc. Glue folded paper circles to cover the seam between the half-ball and the disc. NOTE: The head is brown as I had painted it for another project which I never finished. You do not need to paint the head.

Obermeyer-Smoothfoam-chickadee3

Continue to glue the circles to the head the same way as the disc, overlapping each circle slightly like feathers.

Obermeyer-chickadee5

Bend two of the pipe cleaners into feet by bending a zigzag in the middle of it and the holding the ends together and twisting. Use your scissors to pierce two holes at the base of the disc and push the twisted end of the feet into each hole.

Obermeyer-Smoothfoam-Chickee copy

Begin pinning and gluing the ribbon onto the side of the disc between the feet. Glue the ribbon all the way around the disc. Pin down any bits that seem to be curling.

Eyeball the placement of the googly eyes and glue into place.

Bend half of the third pipe cleaner into a loop. Bend the other half into a second loop and twist the ends together. Pierce a hole with your scissors between the eyes, but slightly down for the beak. Push in the ends of the pipe cleaner beak.

Your chickadee will stand up, though he is a bit wobbly as a newborn chick.

Gazebo Centerpiece

smoothfoam Gazebo centerpieceDecorate this gazebo centerpiece with your favorite colors and flowers. It makes a lovely tabletop decoration for spring occasions such as a bridal/baby shower, birthday or Easter. dinner.

Materials:

Smoothfoam discs:  one 6″; two 8”; one 10”
1” Smoothfoam ball 
7 bamboo skewers
Craft paint – white or color
1” wide ribbon
Silk flowers
1 sheet plain paper
Tacky glue
Modeling paste
Paint brush, craft knife, scissors, palette knife
Hot glue gun

Instructions:

1.  Paint all the Smoothfoam pieces and skewers, let dry.

2.  Trace a circle on paper using the 8” Smoothfoam disc. Cut out the circle and fold it into eighths. Mark a point ½” from the edge on each fold line except one. This will be the pattern for the placement of the skewers. Mark the pattern on each 8” disc using the skewer.

3.  Glue one 8” disc to the 10” disc. Trim skewers to height desired. Use pattern to push the skewers into the base; glue another 8” disc on top. Glue the 6″ disc to the top of the 8″ disc. If desired, cut a slice off the top of a 6″ Smoothfoam ball to create a dome for the gazebo. Sand the edges and glue to the top disc. Glue the 1” ball to the center top.

4.  Apply modeling paste to the seam between the top disc and dome. Add more paint to cover.

5.  Glue flowers around top of gazebo. Glue ribbon around the base edges.

Yarn-wrapped open heart frame

 

SMOOTHFOAM string art

Valentine’s Day is just around the corner, but there is still plenty of time to create a perfect, one-of-a-kind gift for that special someone in your life! Inspired by the retro resurgence of 1970’s string art, this yarn-wrapped open heart frame is quick and easy, needing no special tools, so the kiddos can definitely help. It looks great as reverse string art – or you can glue a photo on heavy cardstock to the back to peek through the heart opening.

Place this plaque on a shelf or mantle to brighten up your Valentine’s Day celebration or attach a ribbon to the back to hang on the wall or the front door. It’s a lovely way to greet your guests as an alternative to a wreath!  This project goes together in under an hour, so you could make several to give as gifts to the special people in your life.  Change the color of the yarn and the wording to match your décor – the possibilities are endless!

Materials:

Smoothfoam 12″ Scrapbook Page Mount
1.5″ Joy embroidered letters – L O V E
Dry and wet adhesives – heavy duty (I use Tombow)
8″ heart pattern
Hot wire cutting tool or serrated knife
Acrylic craft paint, paintbrush
Decorative yarn
Scissors, paper, pencil, emery board

smoothfoam sheet

Position and trace a heart pattern in the lower right corner of the Smoothfoam sheet with a pencil. I made my heart the old-school way by folding a piece of paper in half, drawing half a heart and cutting it out.

cut heart out of paper

Cut out the heart from the Smoothfoam with the knife or hot wire tool. Remove any rough edges with an emery board (nail file)

cut heart from smoothfoam sheet

Remove the heart to save for another project. Paint the front and sides of the sheet with a color to match your yarn.

paint smoothfoam sheet

Apply heavy-duty adhesive tape on the back of the sheet around the edges. This will help hold the yarn in place.

02-16 SMOOTHFOAM LOVE PLAQUE 5

Secure an end of the yarn to the back of your sheet and begin wrapping it around, through the heart cut-out. Dab some quick-grab liquid adhesive on the outer corners to prevent the yarn from slipping. Continue wrapping until the entire surface is covered. Cut the yarn and glue the end down in back.

02-16 SMOOTHFOAM LOVE PLAQUE 6

Glue your LOVE letters in place on the front.

02-16 SMOOTHFOAM LOVE PLAQUE 7

HAPPY VALENTINE’S DAY and thanks for stopping by!

Sweet Valentine Lollies

smoothfoam valentine lollipopsMy daughter and I love to create handmade Valentines for her class each year. A few years ago, we made faux lollipops with a “You Are Sweet” tag and they were a huge hit. I thought I would share a tutorial for making a similar version using Smoothfoam hearts.

Supplies:

Smoothfoam hearts
Acrylic craft paint
Glitter
Skewers
Decorative paper straws
Ribbon
Craft glue

Instructions:

Heart Step One

Insert a skewer into the base of a Smoothfoam heart to use as a handle. Paint each heart with base coat of your choice of colors. Allow to dry. Use a Smoothfoam block or disc to stick the hearts into to dry.

masking stripes on painted smoothfoam heart

Paint a design on the front of the heart with a second color – use foam stamps or draw your own doodles, or mask a heart with painter’s tape to paint stripes. Try sprinkling glitter on top of the paint while it’s still wet. You may need to touch-up some of the base color after pulling off the painter’s tape.

To assemble the lollipops, apply a small amount of craft glue to one end of a decorative straw and run the skewer that is attached to your heart through it, adhering the glued side to the heart.

smoothfoam Heart Valentines

Click here to download, print and trim out some Valentine messages for the tags. Tie a ribbon and glue a tag to the straw.

If you want to get really fancy, you can add a cello bag over the lollipop – just make sure they know it’s not real candy!

Valentine Printables

Valentine Conversation Heart Bouquet

smoothfoam heart bouquet

Oh, if it be to choose and call thee mine – love, thou art every day my Valentine!
—Thomas Hood

Who doesn’t love conversation hearts for Valentine’s Day? This bouquet is a quick craft, perfect for kids – it takes just about an hour to make, including drying time.

You will need:
3″ Smoothfoam cube
Conversation heart stickers
Pipe cleaners in an assortment of pink, red, hot pink and metallic
Sponge brush
Pink acrylic paint
Screw driver or knitting needle
Narrow Valentine-themed ribbon
Scissors, ruler
Tacky Glue, glitter glue

Let’s Create!

Paint 5 of the 6 sides of the cube. Allow paint to dry.

Glue a 14″ length of ribbon around the top edge of the cube.

Punch a hole at the top center of the cube with a screwdriver or knitting needle.

Obermeyer-Valentine-Bouquet3Prepare each conversation heart flowers by peeling the liners off of two heart stickers and pressing the pipe cleaner between them. Push the pipe cleaner stem into the hole on the cube. Add about a dozen more such flowers.

For variety, you can twist together two pipe cleaners and shape the top third into a heart to tuck into the cube.

Embellish the cube with glitter glue dots.

Smoothfoam Beads

Smoothfoam Beads Necklace

Everyone knows children love to use beads for necklaces, key fobs, and all manner of projects, but have you tried to paint wood beads with kids? It’s messy, right? The beads roll around (inevitably after they have been covered in a thick coat of paint). We won’t even mention how messy fingers get either. I believe kids crafts should be fun for the kids and not make parents crazy and that’s where Smoothfoam beads come in.

Smoothfoam Beads Keychain

If you use 3/4″ Smoothfoam balls as beads, you can stick a toothpick into them to hold while painting and poke into a block of Smoothfoam while drying to eliminate the mess.

Supplies:

3/4″ Smoothfoam balls
Toothpicks, wood skewer
Acrylic paints

Instructions:

Carefully push a hole straight through the center of each ball with a skewer. This step is best done by a parent for safety reasons!

Once you have a hole, stick a toothpick inside the ball. If you have small children, make sure the end that the child will hold is flat, not sharp!

Hand the “bead” over and let the child go crazy painting it. Encourage them to make designs like polka dots by using the end of the either paint brush handle.

Smoothfoam Beads.

When the beads are completely dry, use them to create beautiful necklaces or almost any other craft that requires beads. Make a big bag of them, all at once, so always have a good supply to use in your crafts. Bonus – Smoothfoam beads float!Smoothfoam Beads II