Comparison of Colored Pencils and Paper When Blending with Gamsol

Comparison of Colored Papers and Pencils when Blending with Gamsol

Earlier this week I shared an overview of Gamsol, an odorless mineral spirits used for dissolving the wax in colored pencils so that you could blend and shade them the same way you can with oil paints. Naturally, though, my curiosity got the better of me and I wondered if better (artist-grade) colored pencils really had an edge over cheaper, student-grade ones. And did the paper really matter? Well, I set out to answer those questions!   I tried five […]

PRODUCT REVIEW: irRESISTIble Pico Embellishers

08-2014 irRESISTible Pico Embellishers 1

I love painting and drawing, so seeing a product that I could both paint and draw with, intrigued me. I was sent 10 of the 29 colors of Tsukineko‘s irRESISTible Pico Embellishers, to test out and do a product review. These are a resist, designed to work with their Texture Spray. It can be used with watercolor paints, and likely water based inks and sprays. I’m not familiar enough with alcohol based products to test them with this too. Description from website: […]

Jellyfish Wind Sock Tutorial

Jellyfish Windsock Tutorial from CraftTestDummies.com

I shared some BIG NEWS with you all last week, and I teased that I was going to make a Jellyfish for one of my segments. Well, I did. But I decided not to wait to share it with you. You all get first peeks! This is a fun project for a party, kids’ room…heck, I’d love a whole school of them in my studio. For real. Materials List: 5” Styrofoam ball rubber band plastic knife acrylic craft paint/brush (optional) […]

Scrapbook Soup 403-1; Making a Card Using Custom Stencils and Masks

You may remember that earlier this spring I visited the set of Scrapbook Soup and filmed two segments. If you follow along with me on Twitter or Facebook, you may know that last spring I was a guest on Scrapbook Soup for a few segments. I demonstrated how to use the Brother Scan N Cut to make stencils and masks with the rubber stamps you already have and then made a card. It’s an idea that I’ve shared on my […]

BOOK REVIEW: Foxy Epoxy by Kristal Wick

FOXY EPOXY BOOK cover

I was send a copy of “Foxy Epoxy: 44 Great Epoxy Clay Projects with Serious Bling” by Kristal Wick, to review. To properly review the book, I was sent some Swarovski Ceralun Epoxy Clay too. You can see the review for the clay, here. This is an advanced jewelry making book, focusing on the use of epoxy clay for various designs. Many of the jewelry making techniques are not basic, requiring existing jewelry making skills. The book is publish by Lark […]

PRODUCT REVIEW: Swarovski’s Ceralun Epoxy Clay

CERALUN EPOXY CLAY - finished projects Collage

I received a sampling of Swarovski’s Ceralun Epoxy Clay to test out. I don’t make a lot of things with clay, since I normally manage to ruin it during baking. However, this clay is self-hardening! Got to love that! This particular clay was formulated to use with the Swarovski chatons, when making jewelry. The chatons have a cone bottom and faceted top. Though it was made for the chatons, you can use it with various small objects. I tested it […]

Review of the Simon Says Stamp Card Kit of the Month

Simon Says Stamp Card Kit of the Month July 2014

Sometimes you just need a little creative kick in the pants, and I’ve found that a kit can do just that. I have ordered some Simon Says Stamp products recently, and decided to take the plunge and try out the Card Kit of the Month. Since July is my first one, I thought I’d share the contents- and my results- with you! Here’s a peek of what was inside the box! First,  a video:   And here’s some detail photos […]

“Firecracker” Rice Treat Pops

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The other day I saw a super cute cookie treat idea  for the 4th of July on CakeSpy– you make cookies with Pop Rocks Candy and then roll the creamy filling with more Pop Rocks for a “firecraker” type of effect when you eat them. I loved the idea- but I needed to crank out my own lazy-and-cheap version. So what’s a gal to do? Hit the Dollar Store, of course! There I picked up the basic necessities: craft sticks […]

Product Review: Ranger Ink and Tim Holtz Distress Marker Spritzer

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Hello crafters!  I am so excited to show you the new Distress Marker Spritzer from Ranger and Tim Holtz!  When I first saw Tim demoing this at CHA last January I was ecstatic!  It works so well with masks and stencils and you can pretty much use any marker in your crafty stash with it.  I was so excited about this tool I just couldn’t resist doing a video about it!  See it below to become familiar with the basics […]

Doctor Who Inspired Galaxy Shoes

Doctor Who Inspired Galaxy and Tardis Shoes- video tutorial on CraftTestDummies.com

My little girl is a full-on Doctor Who super fan. She watches the shows obsessively and had started requesting more clothing and craft projects that center around the Tardis, sonic screwdrivers, weeping angels and daleks! So be prepared, folks- there will be more Doctor Who crafts showing up here soon. But back to today’s project. We were attending a Doctor Who live event at our local movie theater and she needed some shoes to accent her Tardis Dress from Hot […]

Book Review: Never Been Stitched by Amanda Carestio

apron from never been stitched book

I have been sewing a long, long time. More than half my life. But that doesn’t stop me from keeping my eye out for books for beginning sewers, like this book “Never Been Stitched” by Amanda Carestio, with the contributions of others. I have lots of friends who want advice on learning how to sew. And since I can’t send them to my mom’s house to learn on a hand-crank Singer like I did, I like having some basic books […]

Personalized Tablet or e-Reader Case- Gift for Dads and Grads and More!

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It was just Father’s Day here in the US, and I’m always stumped. I have a husband who doesn’t want or need “stuff.” He doesn’t collect anything, abhors tchochkies and knick-knacks, doesn’t wear ties or drink coffee or drink liquor. So my gift options are kind of limited. But he does like to read on an e-reader and he likes English Premiere League Soccer- but those kinds of fan items are hard to find in the US. Lucky for me, […]

Upcycled Mint Tin Craft Inspired by Alice in Wonderland

Upcycled Mint Tin Inspired by Alice in Wonderland using Collage Clay from Plaid

Remember that part in Alice in Wonderland when she finds the little cake that says “Eat Me?” Well, that passage sparked my creativity this week and, paired with my new love of Collage Clay by Plaid, I was inspired to upcycle a mint tin and create today’s tutorial for you! For this tutorial you’ll need: MOD PODGE Plaid Collage Clay OR Golden Artist Colors – Light Molding Paste palette knife OR old gift card piping bags and tips candy-themed buttons […]

AnyHero Cards for Operation Write Home- Sketch 266 (Patriotic Cards)

AnyHero Patriotic Cards for Operation Write Home- sketch 226

If you follow me on Instagram, you’ve already gotten a sneak peek. Monday was Memorial Day, and I committed a good 2 hours to making AnyHero Cards for Operation Write Home. For those of you who maybe don’t know, I make cards out of the supplies I get here to review on CTD and then donate them to a wonderful organization who ships them out to the troops so that THEY can send cards home to friends and family. Because, […]

Clay Extruder Comparison on Polymer Clay Tutor

One of the things I love about the world of crafters is that there is SO MUCH good information out there! Recently I came across a great video comparison of the Walnut Hollow polymer clay extruder and one that is manufactured by Makin’s. I actually have the Makin’s one and LOVE it- but isn’t it great to know that Cindy Lietz has compared the two for us? You can see her whole post here, but all of the pertinent information […]

Review: Clover Bead Loom Kit

Review: Clover Bead Loom Kit

  Not too long ago I wrote a Review of the Clover Bead Loom and in it I said that I’d always admired beadwork but that I was intimidated because of the intricate designs. If I had known how relatively easy weaving on a loom could be I would have checked it out sooner. But then, the Clover Bead Loom Kits make it easy to get started with bead weaving.     Here is what the kits include – instructions along with […]

How-To Recycle Plastic Eggs into Musical Shakers (Sensory Craft)

How-To Recycled Easter Egg Shakers

Yes, Easter has come and gone. How would you like to use up those plastic eggs instead of saving them for next year? I’ve got a fun sensory/music craft for you today that will probably cost you ZERO dollars out of pocket AND is Earth-Friendly, too! That’s a three-fer craft, folks. Recycle those plastic eggs!  You’ll need to first do a scavenger hunt around your house for: plastic eggs old tissue paper, comics, gift wrap, or thin, flexible handmade paper […]

Decoden Zipper Pull/Luggage Tag Tutorial

Decoden Zipper Pull Tutorial

As I mentioned in my review yesterday, Decoden is HUGE right now- and lucky for us, it’s a really easy and fun craft for anyone who has the “more-is-MORE” aesthetic. So let’s get started! Disclosure: Links below are affiliate links and I will receive a small commission on your purchase. Thank you for supporting my blog! You will need: a laminate sample chip (like at the home improvement store) Decoden Bling or Collage Clay Spray mist (optional) Fine glitter Rhinestones Theme […]

Card Share- OWH Sketch #218

OWH Sketch 218

Last week I was traveling- and while I loved being on vacation with my family, that meant there was NO TIME for  crafting! I was eager to get back into the studio and when the Operation Write Home Sketch Challenge of the week hit my email box, I was ready to rise to the occasion. LET’S MAKE A CARDS! Here’s the sketch: I took a look through my supplies and put these together: I love the variations you can get […]

Making Stencils and Masks with the Brother Scan N Cut

Cutting Stencils and Masks using Rubber Stamps with the Brother Scan N Cut

Last week I was watching my friend Christine of ScrapTime use Wendy Vecchi stamps that came with their own stencils and masks for adding layers without over-spraying the background. But then I got to thinking- why couldn’t I do that with my Brother Scan N Cut? The answer is YOU CAN. And it’s EASY. You only need a few things: A stamp with a good outline (no interior spaces) stamped in thick black ink A Manilla folder or some plastic- […]