Cactus Bookmarks

The Story
Do you remember the time when every pin was cupcakes? There were mini-cupcakes, cupcake tattoos, cupcake stationary.  And, then, as a collective, we exhausted of it. First, the cool kids moved on to pies, then pop tarts, and then donuts.  Eventually, everyone caught on.  This is the anatomy of every trend, first a few, then so many, and finally, complete amnesia.
Right now, we are in a fever of cactus, piercing our consciousness (couldn’t help the pun).  I don’t know where it came from, and I don’t know what will dethrone them.  But, I would guess their time will soon leave.  I say this because my young daughters have been really into cacti decor, pointing out items from Ikea and Target.  This is usually the beginning of the end.
Cool kids are already looking for something new. You think I am kidding?  I remember once, years ago, my oldest daughter, walked into the workshop of a balloon artist. Yes, you read that phrase correctly.  She was all big brown eyes and braids.  Irresistibly cute, I have it on good authority.  The artist expressionlessly nodded at my daughter who responded with the most cheerful expression of commonality, “Your mustachio is the same as the ones on my dress.” In that expression, the tall, handle-barred man deflated ever so slightly.  My daughter, luckily, didn’t catch the zeitgeist of the exchange.  Instead, she hopped out of the room, balloon sculpture in hand, proud of her connection to the artist.
As I made these cactus bookmark gifts for my daughters, I thought about how I might be poking to coolness of cacti, ever so slowly deflating their hold on our aesthetic consciousness. But, of course, that means something else will be around the corner.  I am hoping for staghorn ferns, but don’t listen to me.  I am always just behind trend :>

The Dog
I warn you.  These bookmarks are tempting to dogs. I mean, like, go bonkers crazy. I had made three of these babies.  I put them down on the coffee table, exhilarated with the idea of the girls and I using matching bookmarks as we read around the fire.  I left, still luxuriating in my fantasy. When I returned, there were but two, and one was soggy to boot. Take this warning seriously, I implore you.

The Directions
This is a very simple project.  Start by cutting 3 pieces of dark green or yellow embroidery floss into 14 inch pieces.
Using a large upholstery needle, pierce the felt ball […]


Planting Seeds : Cactus and Houseplant Bookmarks

 The Story
I am a big reader.  I mean like 150-200 books a year, even now, with kids and a job.  I was the kind of teenager who feel asleep with a pile of books in her bed.  I hung out in coffee shops.  I dream of bookshelves with leather bound tombs.
A couple years ago, I decluttered (konmari-lite).  I kept some unread books and got rid of some I loved.  We donated scores to the homeless and prisoners.  I still have more books than hairs on my head, but I would say it is manageable. (More manageable than my hair, mind you.)  Instead of buying books, I became a power user of our library systems (we have two of the largest in the country in my town).  I also  moved to digital.  (Audible gasps at this point in the story are okay).
I was initially averse.  What about the action of holding your tale? Flipping the pages?  The smell, oh the smell.  Sure those things are gone.  But, now I can rent a book at 9:55 on a Tuesday night, kill it Wednesday night, and get another.  I can flip through so many options and not look like a hoarder.
But, there was a strange bi-product.  While I now have a certain ease of reading, my love of books has gone stealth.  My children don’t have the parents I did, noses in books.  They have a mom, like all the others, addicted to tech.  Studies show that lifelong readers join this pursuit in part because they see their caregivers enjoying books.  And, I wanted my girls to see that.  As further enticement, I thought we would glam it up.  Hence, the many bookmarks on my blog.  (We are flighty in our visual desires).  And, so this project was born.

A post shared by Seema r (@artplaymake) on Mar 22, 2017 at 12:58pm PDT

The Project
Using plasticine clay, start my making your cactus form (like a three-pronged fork).  Make your cactus stem slightly longer than you would like it to be in the end.  Our cactus book marks are about gold dollar sized.
Create your femo pot.  I went for striped.  You choose your pattern.
Turn both over and smooth together.
Cook at 200 for 10 minutes (or to package directions).
When cool, hot glue to a binder clip.
Put on the right page of your best book.

Cactus Earrings : Sharp Style

The Story
We don’t wear shoes in the house.  There are days where I am tempted, but I am Asian, and we don’t wear shoes in the house.  Why am I tempted?  Because I live with two humans who seem to be trying to kill me.  Sure they seem like they love me, with their handmade valentines and their wet, wet kisses.  But, all the while, they leave missiles in the form of tiny lego flowers and shopkins on the floor.  These are just in the middle of the floor, plainly visible.  These things aren’t even in their room.  They are in odd places like the crease when the rise meets the run on a step.  Places where the person walking might not think to be careful.  With the target’s guard down, the full impact of said missile is felt in excruciating clarity.
One such item that fell under foot yesterday was a lone stud earring. My younger daughter has returned home from school maybe a dozen times with both earrings still in place.  I feel lucky if the dislodged earring has been placed in a pocket or in a bag.  Most likely, it has gone to become a foot missile in her school.  What do you do with just one earring? With the preponderance of lone earrings, I have take to dressing them up.

This simple project turns a couple of mismatched earrings into a set of Cactus earrings, on trend and off the floor.
The Directions
You need two old stud earrings, 2 tiny green felt balls, 1 tiny colored green felt ball (I used pink), black thread, a needle, and epoxy.  
Start by sewing the green balls, in the way I made the cactus bookmarks.

Cactus Bookmarks on the blog today, and playing around with Stopmotion. Missing #vineapp >>> #crafts #crafted #crafting #creativelifehappylife #crafter #felted #functionalart #felt #feltballs #feltcraft #feltflowers #cactus #cacti #bookmarks #bookmark #stopmotion #stopmotionanimation #animation #stopmo #craftvideo #craftvideos #craftvids
A post shared by Seema R (@artplayspace) on Feb 24, 2017 at 10:36am PST

Then cut the pink ball in half.
Epoxy one half to each of the green balls.
Finally, epoxy the cacti to the studs.
Voila! Sharp Style.