Shabby Chic Signpost

smoothfoam shabby chic signpost

Create a shabby chic signpost with chalk paint and embroidered letters.


Smoothfoam sheet
3″ Smoothfoam cube
Joy embroidered letters (I used 1.5” script and 1″ block letters)
Chalky finish paints – 3 colors
White craft paint
16″ long dowel (3/8” diam)
Wood bead to fit dowel
Corrugated cardboard coffee cup sleeves
Tacky glue
Craft knife, metal ruler, sandpaper
Paintbrush, bamboo skewers


1.  Cut sections from the Smoothfoam sheet with craft knife and metal ruler (each 2 ½” wide) at varied lengths – 7″, 8″ and 9”. Notch the ends randomly with the knife to look like torn, weathered wood. Sand along the sides to distress further.

2.  Push a skewer into the center of each sign to use as a handle (this also starts a pilot hole in each sign for assembly later) and paint each sign a different color. Paint the Smoothfoam cube and the wood dowel white. Brush the edges of cube and paint the wood bead with a contrasting color.

3.  Tear the corrugated cardboard into rough squares, smudge with paint and then glue a square to each side of the cube.

4.  Glue letters to each sign to spell a word, let dry.

5.  Use the skewers to push pilot holes through the center of each sign and then carefully thread the signs on to the dowel. Glue the bead to the top of dowel.

Snowflake Vignette

smoothfoam Snowflake Vignette

‘Tis the season for snowflakes and snowmen, Christmas trees and handmade ornaments!

I wouldn’t call this project “mini,” but it is fairly small. I added the little cardstock roof, door and window to the Smoothfoam house. I cut them out of scraps of off-white paper I had handy. Read on for the supply list and instructions!

smoothfoam snowflake

You will need the following supplies:

6″ Smoothfoam snowflake
3″ Smoothfoam mini house 
Craft paints:  light pink, light blue
Snow-Tex medium
Tacky glue
Clear glitter
Mini bottle brush trees
Cardstock scraps
12″ silver tinsel stem
Toothpicks, paintbrush, scissors




1.  Paint the snowflake light blue. Paint the house light pink. Allow to dry thoroughly.

2.  Cut a roof and door for the front of the house and any little details you want to glue on from the cardstock.

3.  Stick a toothpick in the bottom of the house.  Trim the excess to 1″ and poke into the middle of the snowflake.

4.  Follow the manufacturer’s instructions and apply some Snow-Tex medium to the top of the snowflake and to the roof of the house. Don’t have a snow storm by applying too much! Smooth on little bits at a time until you have the desired effect.

5.  Apply glitter while the medium is wet and shake off excess. Apply glue to the base of each tree and push into the wet SnowTex.

6.  Cut and make a tiny wreath from the tinsel stem and glue it to the front of the house.  Glue a little piece of the tinsel to the top of each tree.

Halloween Tombstone

smoothfoam headstone


Smoothfoam Tombstone
Heat tool
Stencil, painters tape
Acrylic paints

First I taped a large 12″ X 12″ Day of the Dead skull stencil on the Smoothfoam tombstone and used a heat tool with a pointed tip to carve out areas on the stencil. Be careful with the tool as it gets very hot and you barely have to touch the Smoothfoam for it to melt away! I like being able to control the depth of the melt. After finishing with the stencil, I went freehand with the heat tool to write RIP.

After I finished carving, I spread some paint on a flat surface and rolled the brayer in it to transfer the paint to the surface of the tombstone. By using a brayer instead of a brush, paint only went on the raised areas. The recessed areas stated white.

Day of the Dead Smoothfoam carving

When I was editiing the photos I thought it would be cool to make one black and white…gives it a creepy look. I am hoping to have several more done in time for Halloween to decorate my whole yard!

black smoothfoam headstone

Carved Inspirational Butterfly Wall Art

Smootfoam-Carved-Butterfly-by-Carmen-Flores-Tanis-mainThis DIY butterfly wall art makes a charming reminder to try new and daring things. Its simple shape makes it the perfect beginner project for carving Smoothfoam. And it is easy to personalize by adding your favorite quote or loved one’s name. You’ll want to make lots of these!

12″ Smoothfoam Scrapbook Mount
Sulky Stick’n Carve Printable Transfer sheets
Acrylic paints – black, light blue, medium blue, dark blue, metallic blue
Hot Wire Foam Factory Hot Knife & Mini-Scroll Table & Engraving Tool
Paint pens – white, black
Silver 12-gauge wire
Wire cutters
White glue, paintbrush
Picture-hanging hook

1.  Click here to download* my butterfly design.  Because it’s too large to fit on a single sheet of Sulky Stick’n Carve, I tiled it on two sheets. Print the butterfly and peel off the backing release paper, then apply the Sulky pieces to the Smoothfoam sheet, overlapping to make one continuous design. Trim off the excess transfer sheet.Smootfoam-Carved-Butterfly-by-Carmen-Flores-Tanis-1

2.  Carefully carve out the Smoothfoam sheet with the Mini-Scroll Table.


3.  Use the Engraving Tool to carve the wording and other details into the foam. Peel off the transfer sheets when finished.

4. Paint the butterfly black. Let dry.


5.  Dip the paintbrush into the dark blue, then wipe most of the paint off onto a paper towel and “dry brush” the blue on top of the black. Set aside to dry. Repeat with the medium blue and light blue paints, letting dry in between coats.


6.  Paint the banner area with a few coats of blue metallic paint.


6.  Add details with the paint pens as shown.

7.  To form the antennae, cut two pieces of wire to 5″ long. Twist one wire into a loose spiral and insert it into the top of the butterfly. Secure with a drop of white glue. Repeat for the second wire.

8.  Glue a picture hanging hook to the back or display on an easel.

* Copyright:  You are welcome to use my original artwork only for your own use or for a gift/donation. You may not use my designs for items intended for resale.

Blue Jeans Bulletin Board

smoothfoam denim bulletin board

Back to college time is here and that means organizing your dorm room with trendy and functional décor. This Blue Jeans Bulletin Board does triple duty with pins, pockets and loops to hang things from! This is a fun project to make something functional from those old jeans that don’t fit anymore. Quick and easy – so you can make one for yourself and give one as a gift.

Here’s what you will need:

1″ x 12″ 36″ Smoothfoam Sheet
Tacky glue
Old pair of blue jeans
1/2″ straight pins

Here’s how to make it:

Cut apart your jeans. I used the legs because they gave me the most fabric. Wrap each leg around the Smoothfoam sheet, securing the edges with tacky glue and straight pins.

Finish the ends like you’re wrapping a present and secure with glue and straight pins.

smoothfoam denim covered bulletin board

Cut out the pockets, leaving the back attached. Cut off the waistband, seams and cuffs to use as accents on your bulletin board, securing with glue and straight pins. Trim the hemmed bottom edge of one leg to glue and pin to the back like a ribbon for hanging.

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.

Make Gazing Balls with Glass Pebbles

Smoothfoam-DIY-Gazing-BallGazing balls can really make a garden pop, but I’ve struggled with finding a mirrored glass gazing ball that I really like. And there is always the concern of the dog knocking it over and breaking it by accident. Then one day I was in the dollar store and saw all these bags of flat glass pebbles that are used as vase filler. Maybe I can’t exactly gaze at my reflection in them, but they would look great glued onto a Smoothfoam ball!

Creating these DIY gazing balls was really very easy and they’re much more affordable than traditional mirrored glass gazing balls. Flat glass pebbles/marbles are available in multiple colors in most craft stores too, so you can make decorative garden balls that accent your garden with whatever color you like. You can even create a mosaic style pattern using multiple colors of marbles.

I laid these balls at the base of some flowers pots on my gravel side yard patio but you can put them in pots, arrange them in flower beds, and more. The larger the ball is, the heavier it will be due to the weight of the glass marbles. It’s best to bring them inside during inclement weather.


To make a garden gazing ball, you’ll need the following supplies:

Smoothfoam balls  (mine are 6″ and 10″)
Acrylic craft paint
Paint brush
Flat glass marbles (aka glass pebbles)
Heavy-duty craft glue or hot glue

Here’s how easy it is to make DIY gazing balls:

1.  Paint the Smoothfoam balls to match the color of the marbles. The marbles are still see-through, even when tinted with color, so the paint color will show through them. Allow the paint to dry thoroughly.

2.  Apply glue to the flat side of each marble and press them to the ball, one by one, until the ball is covered.

Decorative Display Board

Smoothfoam Display Board

My project started as a memo board and then…while I was looking for some push pins, I stumbled across a collection of little pretties. Tucked away in a cabinet, along with a lot of other embellishments, were these little metal frames that I’d been hoarding since my K & Company days.

I added those frames along with some other little pretties onto my board. Love!

Memo Board Products

To make my decorative display board, I used:

Smoothfoam 12 x 12 Scrapbook Page Mount
Wood laser-cut frame
Gingham fabric
Dimensional paper flowers
Cream acrylic paint, paintbrush
Craft knife, cutting mat, ruler
Spray adhesive
Fabric glue


Paint the wood frame cream and let dry.

Trim the Smoothfoam sheet to 1/4″ larger than the center opening of the frame.

Apply spray adhesive to the front of the Smoothfoam and lay it on the wrong side of the fabric. Wrap the fabric around to the back and secure with glue.

Glue the frame on to the front of the fabric panel, then decorate the top and bottom of the frame with the flowers.

Push decorative garment pins in to the foam at an angle to hang your own little “pretties.”