Friday, January 19, 2018

Puppy dog leash holder

How to make a crafty little leash holder for your beloved fur-buddy.

Guess what?   We got a puppy!  Well, she has been with us a couple of months now but seems like she has been a part of this family forever.  Time for her to have a place on the wall.  You would not believe how much stuff she has already collected...   Not spoiled though.....nah....   Jellybean is a Yorkshire Terrier cute little thing.  Behavior wise however, I think she is a Yorkshire terrorist.   But we go to school every week to learn manners and she is learning..... slow but sure.
I want to show you how I made this little wall hanging to keep some of her accoutrements handy.

This is a fun and easy project.   With proxxon tools it is super simple.

Equipment and Supplies:

Proxxon scroll saw
Proxxon OZI/E detail sander
Drill with drill bits..
3 cup hooks
embellishments of your choice
spray adhesive
Plaid paints
spray sealer of your choice.  I used krylon triple thick glossy.

The first thing I did was to draw a pattern of my bone onto the piece of wood..  This was easy enough to just freehand it.     Then I cut it out using the Proxxon scroll saw.   I sanded it smooth using one of my favorite tools, the Proxxon OZI/E detail sander.   I like my edges slightly rounded and this is easy to do with this tool.

Next step:   Personalize it:
My handwriting is not the greatest so I used my computer to design the "Jellybean" I will cut out.  Once I had it how I liked, I printed it onto regular paper.   I used adhesive spray on the back of the paper, waited a few seconds until it got tacky and stuck it on the "bone".  

Then I cut it out using the Proxxon scroll saw.   This is an inside cut so it is necessary to drill some starter holes to slip the blade through.  I drilled the hanger hole at this time also.

Scroll sawing is relaxing to me.  The Proxxon scroll saw has two speeds so it is easy to control at the speed that works best for you.  After the cutting be sure to sand the edges if there are rough spots or splinters.   Using a fine toothed saw blade pretty much eliminates the need to do that because it really cuts clean.  I drilled two holes at the bottom where I will fit some pegs.

I painted the little stars and put the pegs in the holes.   

Wednesday, January 17, 2018

Floral Dare Sign

Hi everyone, Steph Ackerman here today with a new sign for 2018. 

My word for 2018 is Dare.  Why not take this year and try something use existing create something connect with someone you've lost sight of, etc, etc........

Begin by taping off the edges of a metal edged sign, then painting it with Plaid paint.

Select embellishments of choice and adhere to the sign.  This is a great way to use items in your stash.  Remember, this project is a Dare.......or a do something different.

Selecting assorted clay elements created with Makin's Clay, I used the Pensander to sand the rough edges.  I added a flower atop clay branches and added leaves created from Rinea foiled paper.  Then I added Dare to the corner.

This sign will hang prominently in my craft room reminding me of this year's challenge.

What is your Dare this year?

Thanks for stopping by.

Sunday, January 14, 2018

How to Make a Pair of Toast Tongs

Don't get burned!! Use these toast tongs to remove slices of bread or a bagel from the toaster to keep your fingers away from the heat. These handy tongs can also be used as ice tongs or to toss a green salad.

Equipment for Making Toast Tongs

  • Length of ½" hardwood for tapered block (see pattern for finished measurements)
  • Two 7" x ½" x 1/16" pieces of hardwood wood for tong blades
  • Two 1¼" x ½" x 1/16" pieces of hardwood for accent on tapered block (OPTIONAL)
  • Wood glue
  • Clamps

Instructions of Making Toast Tongs

  1. Use the table saw to cut a 1" strip of hardwood (I used oak, but cherry or maple are suitable alternatives) that will be used for the tapered block that is set between the blades. Set the blade height so that the saw blade extends above the piece of wood that you're cutting.
  2. Use the band saw to cut the blade lengths and optional accent pieces for the tapered block.
  3. Scribe lines on the 1" strip of hardwood for the tapered block and kerfs according to this pattern.
  4. Use the band saw to cut the tapered block and kerfs. Be sure not to over cut the kerfs; the blades need to fit snugly.
  5. OPTIONAL—Use a strong wood glue and clamps to attach the accent pieces on tapered block.
  6. Use a strong wood glue to glue the tong blades in place in the kerfs.
  7. When the glue is thoroughly dry, sand all edges smooth and even using the disc sander.
  8. Using the disc sander, sand an angled edge on the bottom of each tong blade.
  9. Ta Da!! No more burnt fingers!!

Saturday, January 13, 2018

A Niche made with Love

The word that I've chosen for the year is Love. In this year why don't we share some love and kindness with someone who might need a little encouragement, an outstretched hand, a lift up or something material to help them to survive in this world?  The Niche that I've created will remind me to do that each day this year. 

The Materials Needed for this Project are:

Assorted pieces of wood
Wooden Balls (for the feet)
Small nails (I used a nail gun)
Assorted Papers
Assorted Embellishments
Balsa Foam
X-Acto Knife
Paint Brushes
Hinges and a Latch

I started the project by drawing out my pattern. I cut two of the arched pieces and one backing piece. I also cut a small piece to use as the base.
I've been trying to use wood that I have on hand and not purchase more until I've used up what I have.
I cut out the door using a thinner piece of wood than the arch so that I could leave as much room as possible inside the niche to place my embellishments.

I used the Proxxon Table Saw FET to cut all the straight lines and the Proxxon Scroll Saw to cut the arched pieces.

Once I had my wood pieces cut out, I drew a heart unto the balsa foam and cut it out in a rough style with an X-acto knife.
I then took the two pieces of arched wood and using wood glue, I glued and clamped them together.
Taking care to wipe off any glue that had squeezed out when I clamped the two pieces together. lol By cutting out the two pieces it made my niche deeper. I let the clamped pieces set overnight to dry and then used my Proxxon Belt Sander to even out any pieces that might have been uneven.
That Proxxon Belt Sander is as handy as a pocket on a shirt! Talk about sanding both pieces level with each other! It is just an awesome tool, as are the table saw and scroll saw. I had a friend stop by the other day who just drooled over my Proxxon Table Saw FET. I attached the back of my piece to the arched piece with some very small nails and a nail gun.
Here is the pieces of wood put together and sanded. I used black gesso to cover the heart for a base coat.

Once all these pieces were ready, I used Plaid Mod Podge to adhere all the papers ( I used wallpaper, scrapbook paper and napkins ) and lace to the niche. I then added the saying, heart and embellishment to the inside of the niche. I used Plaid Color Shift Paint to paint the pieces not covered by papers. I then put on the latch and hinges with the screws that came with and glued the wood balls unto the bottom for feet. These were also painted with Plaid Color Shift Paint.

I was so happy with the way everything turned out. Yes, you probably could have made this with some lighter materials ( stryofoam perhaps ) but it certainly wouldn't have been as sturdy as this niche is. I want to say that I appreciate the Proxxon Company for providing us with all the tools that we get to use and also Plaid for providing all the new paints that we've had the pleasure of using in our projects. You need to check out the tools from and also the paints and other things from Plaid


Friday, January 12, 2018

How to make a recipe stand

wooden clipboard
2 small nuts and bolts preferably with rounded heads
1 x 3x 10 inch board.  I used cedar
2 small 4" long 1/4" dowels
Plaid's coastal paints  I used Largo blue and lemonade.
gesso paint for priming the board
Krylon matte spray  (optional)
Mona Lisa film sanding sheet.

Proxxon OZI/E detail sander
Proxxon mini table saw FET
Drill and drill bits  1/8" and 1/4"
Plaid's special design roller
Paint tray

The first step is to prepare the clipboard.  I took the clip off of the board to facilitate painting it as a flat surface.  I did this using the 1/8" drill bit.  It came off easily and left 2 small holes which we can use later to refasten it.

 Next I painted both sides with white gesso and let this dry well. Then sanded it with a really fine  piece of Mona Lisa film, sanding sheet.

I chose to paint my back ground with Plaid's lemonade yellow coastal paint. It is a beautiful color!   I used two coats and then let it dry completely.

Here comes the fun part.  Using Martha Stewart's Largo Blue coastal paint I used the design roller to roll on the beautiful design.   Instructions come on the package are super simple to follow.

Use the Matte spray (if desired) to seal the paint.   This paint does not require a sealer, however since I will use it to hold recipes I used it so that food splatter could be cleaned off easily.

Now put the clip back on.  I used the 2 small nuts and bolts.   The nut should go on the front side but will be under the clip and not cause any problems.


Now to make the stand.
First cut your wood to size using the Proxxon table saw FET

We need a slot for the clipboard to rest in.  To do this you will make a slot (dado) to fit the clipboard.  The splitter and the blade cover on the table saw need to be removed for this.   I adjusted the blade to approx. 1/4" depth and set the blade to tilt to 15 degrees.  This is so the clipboard will lean slightly.   Using the fence set about 1/2 inch from the blade run your piece of wood over the blade.  Important the blade should not cut completely through the wood, but about halfway   This is going to make you a narrow groove.   This groove is too thin for the clipboard to sit in so you will need to move the fence just slightly farther away and run the board through again to widen the groove.  After you do this check the fit with the clipboard.  You may have to run it through a third time.  You want it to slide in easily but not be overly loose.  

Sand all your sides and edges using the Proxxon OZI/E detail sander.    Seal the wood with sealer of your choice.

I noticed that the clipboard wanted to tip over backwards but I did not want to make the stand any bigger so I drilled 2 1/4" holes 1/2" deep into the back edge so that I could insert the dowels to stabilize it.  These can be removed when storing to save space.   

this is the backside

I would like to thank  and Proxxon Mini Tools for their support and for supplying tools to make these projects
I would also like to thank plaid paints  
  For sending paints and new products and Patterned Rollers to do these projects.  
Plaid has some new and exciting paints to try. 
Last but not least Terri Sproul our point of contact , coach and leader. Also the person who jumps in to help whenever and wherever it is needed.
I also want to thank all of  our supporters who come and visit and like the blogs.  Without you this would not be possible. 

Friday, January 5, 2018

How to make a cute little train from yard scraps

Hey everybody, welcome to winter.!  Now that Christmas is over I thought it was time to get a head start on spring and do a little yard work before it gets too darn cold. We have a giant boxwood bush that was just getting out of control.  So time for pruning.  This left me with an abundance of limbs of all sorts and sizes.  
Hmm..... what can I do with this?

How bout we make a train?

Supplies and Equipment:

Wood pieces (limbs) of various sizes
wood plank (for mounting train)
wood glue   (I used gorilla glue for wood)

3 LED tea lights  (optional)
1 1/4" forstner drill bit  (optional if using tea lights)

OK, first thing to do is to cut our pieces to size.   I did not measure anything, I simply cut the pieces to sizes I liked and that looked pretty good together.   I made some flat sides so that they would sit well.  I cut a tall piece and a smaller piece for the engine plus a smokestack.  Then I cut 3 pieces for the cars.

I cut a whole bunch of wheels using the Proxxon mini table saw.   In the end I think it needs 16 wheels.  This was fun and so easy.  This table saw is amazingly quiet which I feel helps take out the fear factor of a big table saw.   And, the cuts are extremely smooth.    But, you still have to watch your fingers as it is very sharp.

The smoke stack sits atop the curve of the engine part so it needed a little adjusting to make it sit flush.  This is easily done with the Proxxon scroll saw.  Just make a little concave cut in the bottom.  This can be fine tuned using the Proxxon OZI/E detail sander

I used a 1 1/4" forstner bit to drill some recessed holes into the top of the "cars" because I wanted to put some tea lights in them so that the train might be used as a night light.  This step is purely optional.  A person might want to glue some rocks on top, paint them black like coal,  or flowers, or ...  This could easily be decorated for Christmas.   

OK,   now glue everything to the wood plank and let dry well.  If this is for a child I would advise maybe adding some screws in the bottom for stability, but glue works just fine if it is not going to be handled roughly.  

All done..  paint or decorate as you choose. 
toot toot....

From trash to train.   This was fun and made so easy with Proxxon tools.   If you haven't already, you really should check out their line of tools at  They are built especially for the crafter in mind, smaller in size but accurate to a fault.   Have a happy and safe New Year everyone.!