Tag Archive | Ideas

Budget Crafters Essentials

There are a few things that are either free or minimal cost that every budget crafter should have in their stash

So here are some of mine

  • Tissue paper in white (I get 5-10 sheets at a local cheapie shop for $1)- this can be used to make everything from grass to water. To add texture, to create clothing and pretty much a whole heap of other things you will find a myriad of uses for it once you start experimenting.
  • Food Colouring- which I get at my local supermarket for 99c a bottle in 5 different colours. If you mix it with a little salt and water in a misting bottle you get a very cheap way to make your own Mists. You can blend them for your own custom colours or experiment with adding a drop or two of a black re inker to darken/deepen the colour
  • Thin Chipboard- the type that comes as packaging on cereal, crackers, and other such things. Is great for die cutting and saves a fortune on buying actual chipboard. You can also stick layers of it together to create thicker chipboard items. Good for the enviroment and your bank balance
  • Plastic Packaging- of the sort dies come in. It is perfect to alcahol ink over. You can use it in place of Acetate. You can die cut it to create your own custome stencils/ stencil elements and you can use it to cut out small patterns. Which I do with some of my smaller bears. You can also use soft drink bottles, milk bottles and icecream containers for the same sorts of things. Milk bottles are great cause they are opaque and give you a different colour to work with.
  • Old Sheet Music/Music Book- I managed to pick up an old book of music for $1.50 at my local Vinnies (for non Aussies St Vincent De Pauls a second hand or op shop). It pays when looking at things like this to look for the thickest book you can find. So you get the most bang for your buck so to speak after all for a budget crafter ever cent counts
  • Old Books- from old paper backs to coffee table books. You can use them to die cut and create pretty flowers, create funky embelishments, use the pages to create a background, cut out the pictures, and also re purpose them into mixed media journals or boxes. There are so many things you can do with books never throw one that is falling appart away.
  • Aluminium Cans- Which can be cut up (carefully) and used to emboss and die cut for funky metal embellishments for your projects.
  • Textas, pencils, crayons and chalks- of the cheap variety all can be used to colour, do resist techniques and other such things for your projects. You can get them cheap and still get some wonderful effects colouring with them.
  • Corrugated cardboard boxes- if you wet one side with a mister or paintbrush you can remove the top layer and use the corrugated card to create albums, embellishments and other such things.
  • A Roll of Brown Paper – great for giftwrapping for both genders, great to die cut and make flowers from, and also for creating cutsom pp.
  • Butchers paper- I often recycled the outer piece and use it in my crafting, it is great inked, stamped, misted, crumpled etc and its another free item you can get multiple uses out of.

These are some of the things that have not only helped me ‘pad’ out my stash for little or no money. But that are things I use regularly.

With a little creativity and imagination you can create wonderful things without feeling like your stash is lacking.

It is sometimes hard to watch others use tons and tons of pretty products and embellishments on their work, especially when you just can not afford to follow suit. However there is something to be said of the imagination required when you have a limited stash and are on a budget.

Don’t look at it as lack look at it as an opportunity to stretch your Imagination, and to create your way!

Thoughts, finished projects and ideas.

So this has been a creative couple of weeks. Yet sadly I cannot share with you some of the things I have been creating. They are for a commission and I am unable to share them until they arrive at their destination.

I am awash with creative ideas; however my creative space is a bomb site. Worse since containers fell over out of nowhere (all sorted again now). The Commission bear turned out better than I had hoped. Especially after the whole safety eye debacle (took me 3 tries and a lot of needle sculpting to get the eyes almost even)

Also created were some inchies for an Artistic Document Swap, I had E and V and the theme was storybook, a bit worried mine will be to plain a my printer is being painful and I know that loads of people printed out little micro images and such.

In the meantime Doodling with Jim Henson is sitting there waiting for me to actually start doodling with Jim (I have read the book it is amazing and I can’t wait to play). Also arriving last week a book called how to draw anything. I have had a look at it; read some am not convinced it is for me. Not sure I am the copy everything type of person but then again perhaps I will be in the mood for it at a different point and also my how to draw fairies and mermaids arrived. So now onto my wish list goes some different sized fine tip black markers (like the Pitt set), water colours, some books to use to practice in, and some new lead pencils. I swear that list always gets longer rather than shorter. Then again there are so many new things to try and techniques to play with.

This year is filled with creative potential. It is the 10th anniversary of me as a bear artist. So along with the unique one of a kind creations each bear made this year bears a very special place as a 10th anniversary bear. Amongst my bear plans are a Mama Umbridge (for those of you who have no idea who that is Might I suggest watching A Very Potter Sequel by Team Starkid), a set of popcorn bears complete with popcorn container, a Marilyn Monbear (from diamonds are a girl’s best friend) and perhaps I will even get my teddy bears picnic scene done, or even my tangled in the Christmas lights on a ladder bear, there is a list of ideas I have floating around here somewhere and quite a few various props floating around. I also have ideas for a 2012 runway collection.

To date I have made over 200 bears. I am looking forward to the challenges some of my new bear ideas will bring.

This is the first non commission bear of this year. Yet to be named (if you have any ideas feel free to comment). The Recycled Curtain fabric has been hand doodled and then hand coloured in using sharpie markers. It did bleed a touch in places but I think it adds to the arty look of the bear.

From the side

Other Side


And of course from the front


As you can see each time you look there is something new to discover. That is the beauty of the hand doodled fabric there is so much to see and delight in.

Not only this but I am determined to aide my inner artist to flourish. In any ways I can be it scrapping, drawing, mixed media, or other things.

Also received some wonderful washi tape this week(my first and I love it). Had a play with it by making a card for a friend. Also I revamped a friendship book I had made a batch of a couple of  Christmases ago from some Martha Stewart wedding programs I got cheap and immediately thought oooh these would make awesome little books or mini albums ($5 for 20 of them on clearance no brainer). So here is the card and the revamped cover. I used the same washi tape so that they would go together. The beauty of the Wedding programs is that not only were they cheap but also as long as you do not use bulky embellishments they fit easily into a card to post. So make a wonderful and thoughtful gift without adding the added expense of extra postage especially when it comes to posting overseas.

So here is the Card very ‘Raindrops Keep Falling on my Head’


and here is the Card and Friendship book together.


I cannot wait to share the commission bear and the card I made for the new parents. It will however be a few weeks before I can do so.

In the meantime create up a storm

For me I will be cleaning up my craft and other spaces as I have new storage here that is yet to be put together as it needs spaces to go into. Can’t wait though as now I should well and truly have a spot for all my craft needs including my bear supplies. This should also help me reduce the amount of stuff that is lacking homes. After all I will have 32 cubes of storage that can all go together to form a wall of craft supplies. The more I sort things the more in some places I realise I need more containers and other such storage bits and pieces to maximise what I can fit in them. Although I am not sure they will all be filled as yet. It is great to be able to look and see where things are as well as it means I am also using more of the stuff I do have as I know where it is.

Well that’s me updated for now. Hope to have more to share with you soon.

May your inspiration flow