Thursday, April 14, 2011

A different kind of sunburst

Well, I've been promising and promising and I am finally here to deliver!

That, right there was my craft for "dollar store week" at SYTYC.

If you're like me, you're pretty much over winter.  Over the snow.  Over the cold.  Over the bundling up.  Bring on SPRING!

My dollar store project is the perfect way to welcome spring onto your wall.

Now, I admit to you.  This project started out in a completely different direction.  COMPLETELY.  But once I started putting it together, it just molded itself into this wall art, and I decided I loved that more.  So I went with it.  (When my crafts start making themselves, I just go along.)

So, first off, you will take three placemats.  I liked these green bamboo pretties.

Now, you'll take some coordinating "braiding thread"which is really just some super sturdy kind of waxed embroidery floss or skinny twine.  (I had the perfect color in my stash, how fortuitous is that?)

So, you'll start at the very end of one of the placemats, and locate the middle row of threading.  Stick your twine down just above the threading, right in between the first two slats of bamboo.  You'll have to really work it in there - I used my thumbnail.

Then you'll poke that back up through those same slats, but just underneath the threading.

And tie a knot around the threading.  Trim the end a bit, but not too much or your little knot will come out.

Pull that twine over to the second placemat,

And do the same thing at the same middle point of threading.  Poke it down through the first two slats, just above the threading,

Then poke it back up through the first two slats, just below the threading.

Pull it tight (but not TOO tight, you don't want bunching.)

Tie a knot.

Now, work your way down the placemat, doing this at each row of threading.

When you're done working your way down, you'll have to do the top rows.

It looks like this when done.  Just dab a little bit of hot glue on those knots and push them down onto the slats to secure the knots more.

Do this with the third placemat as well, so you have one long "frame" for your sunbursts - er, grassbursts if you will.  (this would make a good table runner, too... just sayin'.)

Cut a circle out of felt.

Dismantle your grass.  Peel off the first layer along with the floral tape.

Unwound, it looks like this:

And your stem now looks like this:

Pull all those little pieces of grass off and get rid of all the plastic chunks.

Unwind them.  They look like this:

Now, spread a layer of hot glue along that flat bottom edge.  It will melt the plastic grass a bit, so you need to move quickly.

Press it down onto your felt circle.

And continue doing this with four other pieces, until you have a star shape.

Now, go back and hot glue more grass pieces in the empty spaces.

And continue layering in the empty spaces, building the layers up, until you like how thick it is.  Then add one last layer, this time, gluing the grass to the VERY CENTER of the felt.  You don't want ALL of the grass in the very center (see in those pictures up there how there's a little circle in the middle?) because the middle would be too bulky.

Lay a plate over the top of it to use as a pattern for trimming.  Just follow the edge (you don't have to cut right up against the plate... unless you have a large plate, which I did not.)  I did cut some pieces shorter than others for more dimension.

And you'll end up with a pile of grass, like this.

Which is not at all part of the tutorial, but I did think I should warn you so that four weeks from now, when you are vacuuming and come upon what you first believe to be pine needles from the Christmas tree, you won't freak out about the horrendous job you've done vacuuming since they've been hanging around for a good 6 months.  No, no, you'll remember - right away - this grand pile of grass and know what really happened.  You will also find this grass in your bed, shoes and, dare I say it, cleavage.  Consider yourself warned.

Now, the happy accident I came across.  This grass curls!  Just run your finger nail down the end of the grass,

And voila!  A curl!  You can press lightly with your nail or apply more pressure, vary the starting point along the grass pieces, and curl to the front or back of the grassburst to make sure the curls are random.

Obviously, repeat this for each grassburst.  I did three, and I wanted the middle one to be slightly larger than the other two.  I glued this thicker plastic grass pieces to the middle and curled them up with a pencil.

Now, just take your little circle mirrors (which I can't find at the dollar store anymore, by the way, but you can find them at Hobby Lobby for about 1.97 for 4 or 5) and smear hot glue all over the back.

Stick it on the front of the grassburst in the middle.

And then hot glue them up on your "frame" - or your bamboo placemat wall runner thing -

For a lovely bit of greenery that will hopefully coax out the sun and living green things.

I paired mine with the lollipop flowers I made for my Yarn it all! series, and a few other colorful accessories.

Now that we've painted our family room, this decor must go.  I just can't see this working against the red.

Fortunately, I CAN see it working in our white/pale yellow/pale green bedroom.

Have YOU ever looked at unattractive faux grass by the fraying flowers and wondered what in the world it could possibly be good for?  With a few bunches, and just a smidgeon of other dollar store products, you can create a focal point on your wall that screams Spring.

It's a BURST of spring, if you will.


lisbonlioness said...

they are freaking awesome!

Julia said...

How springy and happy! Thanks for sharing!

Donna @ Snowbound said...

I like that a lot! You come up with some pretty interesting crafts, I love following your blog. Thanks.

Michell @ Girl In Air said...

OMG! That is soo stinking fabulous!!!

I'm pinning it to Pinterest!

Mom said...

I love the way the grass curls... This is awesome...

Unknown said...

i thought these were super cool!

my dad said they looked like squashed bugs.

but hey, he's my're my competition.

plus he's a man and has no sense of style anyway.


My Dream Canvas said...

Wow, Wow, This looks lovely, hope to see you at My Dream Canvas.

Jen @ said...

WOW - adorable. I love your ideas!!

I shared this on my TT&J facebook page :)


Unknown said...

Love this!! Seen your link on tatertots and jello...and new I had to come follow you! Thanks for posting!

Spunky Junky said...

Wow! These mirros look amazing on your wall. Such a great project! I am featuring them on SJ tomorrow~


terri said...

We are sisters at heart, I think. Just found your blog today and I was laughing so hard at the way you describe your projects. That's exactly what my blog is about too. I'm now a follower:)

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