DIY: Photo Album Pop-up Ornaments


Okay. I’ll admit it. I have possibly been making too many ornaments.

The floor is covered in little bits of paper, the ribbons are everywhere, and cat is oh so happy. (Happy and thus in the background of many of my photos.) I can’t help it. I’ve given myself over to the ornament bug, and even though I’ve told myself that these are ‘just this year’s ornaments’, I’m not sure I’ll have the self control to throw them all away.

I need a crafter help line… or maybe I can just spread the decoration disease and have you all join me in the madness. (*evil laughter*)

My sister recently handed over a large bag of family photos, and after the proper period of mortification I decided that I needed to do something with them. The best part about being in charge of photo projects is that you can include only adorable pictures of yourself, and edit out the slightly more awkward times.

I pulled together a selection of photos of family that yelled “HAPPY HOLIDAYS, Y’ALL!” Scanned and shrank them, then pulled out a few basic tools to turn the faces I love into ornaments I’ll cherish.

IMG_3792_photoalbumornaments

SUPPLIES

  • Resized photos printed on medium-heavy weight paper
  • Extra colored paper or cardstock
  • Medium to large hole punches– any symmetrical shape will work, I used circles and ovals
  • Ribbon or string
  • Buttons, bells, or beads
  • Paper glue or adhesive

IMG_3802_photoalbumornaments
To begin I punched my favorite people out of my favorite photos, and the same number of circles out of cardstock. Then I chose between 4 and 6 of my favorites, the same number of solid circles, and folded each in half– top to bottom.

IMG_3806_photoalbumornaments
I chose a button than matched my cardstock, then cut about 16 inches of string and fed it through the button.

IMG_3811_photoalbumornaments
I used my Scotch ATG gun to apply adhesive to each folded piece (glue works too).

IMG_3817_photoalbumornaments
I attached each piece to the one before it in a stack, alternating photos and cardstock. (Make sure that you don’t accidentally glue your sister in upside-down. She wouldn’t like that. All photos should point the same way.)

IMG_3823_photoalbumornaments
I laid the string and button across the spine of my stack (button on the bottom), added a little adhesive to one of the folded pieces, and attached the top and bottom piece to form a ball shape.

IMG_3825_photoalbumornaments
Then I fed another button on above the ball, tied a knot, and fluffed open all the pages.

IMG_3827_photoalbumornaments
I love how simple they look from far away, but each page is a memory of the holidays and of my family.

IMG_3842_photoalbumornaments
I did a few variations, using different punches, and combining shapes on one ribbon; but they are all put together the same way which means I could spend more time remembering good times than obsessing over the process.


It also means it’s a great project for kids, who might get a thrill out of punching holes out of photos.
IMG_3898_photoalbumornaments
and keeping them forever.

DIY: Playing Card Ornaments

IMG_3564_playingcardornaments
An old deck of cards in one hand, and the perfect Christmas Tree outside… something weird’s gonna happen.

We love games at this house. Card games, board games… you name it. I don’t love worn-out cards, though, so I’ve been looking for a clever way of getting rid of a couple of our older decks. After playing with strips of paper as Christmas ornaments, I started thinking about ways to turn flat cards into 3-d shapes. Internet searches gave me a few options, including this great tutorial for making ornaments out of MTG playing cards. After following the tutorial, I made a couple of tweaks and ended up with another great collection of ornaments for our outdoor holiday tree.

IMG_3459_playingcardornaments

Supplies

  • A deck of cards
  • Thin-ish wire: I used 22 Gauge floral wire
  • Assorted beads or buttons: Make sure the wire will fit through the holes.
  • Wire clippers and pliers
  • Craft knife or paper cutter
  • Awl or large needle for piercing cards
  • Ribbon or string

IMG_3465_playingcardornaments
To begin you will cut several playing cards into 1/2″ strips. Choose 16 of those pieces to turn into your first ornament.

IMG_3471_playingcardornaments
Poke a hole, at the bottom and top of each piece, approximately 1/4″ from the end. (You should be able to pierce through multiple cards at once.)

IMG_3543_playingcardornaments
Trim a length of wire, approximately 10″ long, and put a small loop in one end. String at least one bead as a stopper, then start feeding your card pieces on, one at a time. This will be the bottom of your ornament, and the side showing from the bottom (shown above) will be the side of the card facing out on your ornament.

IMG_3527_playingcardornaments

The red side will be hidden on the inside of this ornament.


Once you have all your card pieces fed on the wire, add about 1-1/2″ of beads as spacers.

IMG_3544_playingcardornaments
Starting with the bottom piece of card, gently feed the wire through the pierced hole at the other end.

IMG_3545_playingcardornaments
Do the same with the next lowest piece of card, letting it rest against one side. Repeat with the next lowest piece of card EXCEPT let it rest on the other side of the center.

IMG_3547_playingcardornaments
Repeat this action on each piece, going back and forth between each side of the ornament. It should begin to form a sphere.

IMG_3538_playingcardornaments
There should be just enough space to feed the last (most interior) piece through. If you feel like the pieces are too cramped, you may want to gently tear a piece or two off your wire.

IMG_3550_playingcardornaments
When you have all the pieces wrapped back around, add another bead or two, make a loop in the wire, and trim. Feed a ribbon through the loop, and you have a nifty ornament!

IMG_3606_playingcardornaments

IMG_3569_playingcardornaments

Other things to try

  • Make the spacer inside the ornament longer for a more spherical ornament, or make it shorter for a more compressed “space saucer” ornament. The different shapes will need a slightly different number of card pieces, but I’ve found that they all use between 14 and 16 pieces.
  • String two ornaments on the same wire for a more complex shape.
  • Mix and match back pieces and front pieces for a striped pattern.
  • String an extra piece of beaded wire or string to the bottom of the ornament for even more decoration.
  • Go crazy with bead spacers and see what happens.

IMG_3576_playingcardornaments
What do you think? Trash to treasure?

DIY: Scrap Paper Strip Ornaments

IMG_3203_paperstripornament
Up until the last couple of years, Safety Husband and I would go home to Texas for the holidays, and we never felt the need to decorate for the season. For the last couple of years we’ve talked about decorating the “Christmas Tree” that just happens to be growing in our upper yard, and this year we’re making it happen. I’ve been putting my brain power into making ornaments that are either weatherproof, or are meant to be thrown away in January. It’s been a great chance to work through some of the materials I’ve been… ahem… collecting.

I love vintage ornaments and paper, and after a couple of years of experimentation I was ready to combine those two loves in this one ornament design. Super quick, because they are held together by staples, a couple of basic techniques can build a whole tree’s worth of decoration.

IMG_2828_paperstripornament

Supplies

  • Stapler
  • Ribbon (3/8″ to 1/2″ wide is great)
  • Scrap Paper: I used leftover 12×12 scrapbooking paper, but catalog or magazine pages would work well too! If you’re using thin paper, you might want to double up on the number of strips per ornament.
  • Clips: binder clips work great for this, but a clothespin will work in a pinch. (Pun intended.)
  • Scissors

IMG_2867_paperstripornament
To begin, cut about eight 1/2″ strips off your paper. (You can vary the number, just make sure you have an even number of strips.)

IMG_2871_paperstripornament
Cut a length of ribbon about twice the length of your paper strips.

IMG_2900_paperstripornament
Fold the ribbon in half, and stack half the strips on each side. Staple near the bottom of the stack, away from the loop of ribbon.

IMG_2904_paperstripornament
The staple will go through all the paper and the ribbon, securing that point. (Staples must be cheating, because they make this too easy.)

IMG_2921_paperstripornament
Put a clip about halfway down the paper, clamping the whole stack of paper and ribbon. With one hand, hold the clip, and with the other gently pull on the loop of the ribbon.

IMG_2923_paperstripornament
This should cause the paper to pooch out a little on the other side of the clip. Repeat the holding and pulling step, but this time grab the ribbon loop and the two strips of paper closest to it on either side.

IMG_2926_paperstripornament
Repeat again and again, adding another strip on either side, until you reach the outer strip.

IMG_2927_paperstripornament

IMG_2931_paperstripornament
Then carefully put a staple through the area the clip was holding.

IMG_2934_paperstripornament

IMG_2936_paperstripornament
Trim any excess paper with a pair of scissors.

IMG_2950_paperstripornament
If you want, you can curl some of the extra paper to add a little decorative detail. Simply roll the paper around a small pencil or paintbrush to curl it.

IMG_2959_paperstripornament
Once you get the hang of the whole pull method, you can shake things up by doing a similar technique, upside-down.

IMG_2977_paperstripornament
Staple in the middle of your ornament, and turn each strip back down. Once you’ve turned each strip, staple them at the bottom to form a heart shape.

IMG_3014_paperstripornament
Using these two techniques you can make a whole range of funky vintage ornaments.

IMG_3448_paperstripornament
If you get sick of looking at the staples, you can replace them with a couple of stitches. Simply poke a hole in the middle of the stack, and make stitches back and forth to secure the ornament.

IMG_3457_paperstripornament
Remove the staple, and you’ll never know it was there.

IMG_3130_paperstripornament
Or spend that time making a whole army or ornaments. It’s up to you!

IMG_3271_paperstripornament
One set down, more to go.

DIY: Simple Trees for Your Chipboard Forest

IMG_3721_chipboardtrees
Even before I was done building little chipboard houses I knew they would need a little setting to live in. I wanted to come up with a simple and flexible tree template that I could make a whole forest out of. Inspired by my old paper bird project, I used strips of chipboard to build these trees.

IMG_3354_chipboardtrees

Supplies

  • Scrap chipboard: from the backs of notepads or boxes. My pieces were 8.5×11″
  • You favorite paper glue
  • Clothespins or clips
  • Craft knife
  • Scoring Tool: a bone folder or dull knife work great

IMG_3356_chipboardtrees
I began by making two score lines along the long side of the board, at .5″ and at 2.5″.

IMG_3374_chipboardtrees
Then I cut two pieces, 1″ wide, off the other side for the trunk of my tree. The remaining piece of chipboard had my score marks on it, and I trimmed it into 1″ pieces (each piece has the same score marks).

I applied glue to the trunk pieces, and clipped them together to dry.

IMG_3380_chipboardtrees
While the trunk glue was drying, I folded each of my small pieces along the score marks, forming an L.

IMG_3387_chipboardtrees
Piece by piece, I applied glue to the .5″ flap and the top of the L…

IMG_3392_chipboardtrees
then clipped them to the trunk. In this picture you can see that I folded the two pieces of the trunk away from each other at the base; this will allow the trees to sit by themselves.

IMG_3400_chipboardtrees
I continued to add tree pieces until I liked what I saw (typically between 2 and 4 tiers), holding each piece with a couple of clips.

IMG_3405_chipboardtrees
When I was happy, let the glue sit overnight, held by the clips. (Happy little trees, as the man said.)

IMG_3707_chipboardtrees
On some I trimmed the top a bit, some I left tall. I love the way the variety turned out. These would be great with snowy glitter added, or paint. I’m just happy to have a forest for my little chipboard houses.

IMG_3701_chipboardtrees
Trees for the little paper world.

 

Yes, I know I sound crazy. Now go make something!

(;

DIY: Chipboard Village with Free House Template

IMG_3735_chipboardvillage
You might have noticed things have slowed down a little over here at A-I-M. Life goes in cycles, as we know, and unfortunately it’s been tripping us up lately. I’m still making things (some of them more therapeutic than others- like the DIY below), but the timing is tricky, and sometimes things don’t make it online as quickly as they should. We’d like to ask you to be patient with us, and give us time to refresh and collect ourselves. We’ll be back to full speed before you know it.

I’ve been trying to simplify my life because I have accumulated too many “things”; and I’ve made a resolution to truly embrace the making of things, rather than the buying or the keeping. (Our house is getting smaller by the second. Someone’s cursed us, I swear!)

So rather than storing ornaments, sparkles, trees and lights, I’m making new temporary baubles from recycled materials.

With that in mind I sat down to make my version (sweet and simple) of a winter village. I built a template that you can use to start your own winter wonderland, and I hope you’ll get as much peace and joy out of it as I did.

IMG_3286_chipboardvillage

Supplies

  • Scrap Chipboard: I like to save the backs of paper pads for projects like this, or you can grab a food package out of the recycling.
  • Pen and pencil
  • bone folder or scoring device
  • Craft knife
  • Paper glue: Elmer’s works great!
  • The printed template: click here or on the pdf below.

chipboardvillage_template

IMG_3287_chipboardvillage
Chipboard is great because you can mark it simply by pressing down hard on it. To trace the template on my piece, I clipped the paper down, then…

IMG_3300_chipboardvillage
used a bone folder and ruler to score the dotted lines (that will eventually be folded).

IMG_3308_chipboardvillage
Then I traced over the rest of the lines by pressing down firmly with a pen.

IMG_3312_chipboardvillage
Once I finished tracing all the lines I had a faint guide to work with. (If you like, trace the lines lightly with a pencil to help when you’re cutting.)

IMG_3316_chipboardvillage
Like most cutting projects, it’s easier to start by removing the small pieces of the template. In this case that meant cutting out the windows, the notch on the back, and two sides of the door. (Refer to the template to make sure you are cutting only the solid line pieces.)

IMG_3322_chipboardvillage
When I had the building and roof all cut out, I used a bone folder to score the folds a little more deeply. Then I began folding each flap gently away from the score mark. (Including the roof piece.)

IMG_3333_chipboardvillage
When I had the main part of the building folded, I applied glue to the flap (shown in gray on the template sheet) and held the pieces together until the glue held firmly. (You can also use clips or clothespins to hold it closed for a bit.) Once the base of the house was holding firmly, I added glue to the roof flaps (also shown in gray) and aligned and attached the roof. (You will want to hold this together by putting your hand into the house-box and pressing the flaps against the roof.)

IMG_3414_chipboardvillage
To frost the windows, I took a piece of cello tape slightly larger than the window, and attached it to a piece that was even larger. Then I taped that frosted pane right into the window-sash. I left the door bent slightly in, to welcome little chipboard guests!

Now that you’ve got the hang of home-building, you can reuse this template by resizing it, or come up with your own design!

IMG_3347_chipboardvillage
For my second building, I used the natural folds in a cracker box, and drew windows and a door with a pencil before trimming it out. Remember to leave flaps to attach the roof! (But in a pinch, a piece of tape will work as well.) Simply erase the lines, glue everything together, and plop it into your village… and when it gets dark…

IMG_3438_chipboardvillage
slip a few LED Christmas lights under your buildings for ambiance. (The notch I included in the template is super handy for running the wires out the back of the house.) Make sure to use low-heat lights, since they will be surrounded by paper!

IMG_3730_chipboardvillage
If you’re anything like me, you won’t be able to stop at chipboard houses. I really want to add some chipboard critters… These little houses make my imagination run free.

One thing that’s for sure, they need to be surrounded by a forest. Next week I’ll show you a quick and easy way to build your own magic woods.

 

One note: I’m a big fan of letting the materials show in my projects, but remember you can camouflage the materials quickly by adding a little paint (spray or acrylic would work great) or by using it as a base for decoupage or collage (like our shadowbox project). Go crazy!

DIY: Season’s Greetings Printable Herb Packet Gift

Season's Greetings Printable Herb Packet Gift Idea
I recently created this fun holiday printable idea for Garden Therapy and thought I would share it here on A.I.M for you to enjoy! -Rachel

Quick and easy holiday gifts are essential for surviving the holiday season. This free printable “Season’s Greetings” Herb Packet is perfect for small gifts and can easily fit into the mail with your holiday greeting cards! Use herbs harvested from your own garden to create flavorful seasoning mixes paired with a simple and delicious recipe.

CLICK HERE to for the full tutorial and free printable download over at Garden Therapy!

Season's Greetings Printable Herb Packet Gift Idea

DIY: Finger Crochet a Round T-shirt Rag Rug

IMG_2201_roundtshirtrug
Despite my sister’s best efforts I’ve never been able to make sense of real crochet. The “finger crochet” method I describe below is something that came out of a lot of experimentation, but I’m guessing you fiber wizards could whip up something even better! If you’ve done a similar project, or have suggestions to make this DIY more clear, please feel free to tell us about it in the comments below.

When I finished re-weaving my t-shirt rug (updated photos at the bottom of that post) I figured out two important things.

  1. There is better way to cut a t-shirt into strips (fewer, longer strips.)
  2. Once you know how to cut t-shirts into long strips, no t-shirt is safe.

IMG_1957_roundtshirtrug
Which translates to: I had a lot of leftover strips of jersey, and wanted to use them up! I started braiding, tying knots, and eventually settled on a method that can best be described as the frumpy cousin of crochet.

PREP: Cutting one long strip

Knotting small strips of jersey (demonstrated in the woven rug post) is time-consuming, so the longer the strip the better. After digging around a bit I found this video that shows how to turn a loop into one long strip.

IMG_2100_roundtshirtrugI started by cutting the large loop of the shirt from the top, and sliced across from one side, stopping about an inch from the other edge.


Then I slipped the loop over my arms, and starting at the end of one cut I cut diagonally towards the end of the next cut on the other side of the fabric. Then the whole thing unwound in a continuous strip.

MAKING THE RUG


To begin I tied a slip-knot near the end of the string by making a loop, reaching through and grabbing the strip, pulling it though and gently pulling to tighten. (There’s a great demonstration of a slip knot at the beginning of this video.)

IMG_1975_roundtshirtrug
Then I reached through that loop, pinched the strip, and pulled it through to create my first chain stitch. (See steps 2 thru 4 on this Red Heart blog post). This whole project breaks down into pulling a new loop through an old loop.

I repeated this chain stitch about 5 times, then…


tucked the loose string end through the last chain stitch to loosely close the first set of chains into a circle.

IMG_2045_roundtshirtrug
To connect the next ring of chains I pulled the next strip (navy) through two existing loops– the one I just made (pictured here closest to my thumb), and the inside of an earlier chain that lined up with my new one (closer to my fingertip).

IMG_2047_roundtshirtrug
This way my newest loop connected my existing chain to the one inside of it. I then started a pattern of 3 chain stitches, 1 connecting stitch, 3 chain stitches, 1 connecting stitch, 3 chain stitches, 1 connecting stitch, 3 chain stitches, 1 connecting stitch, 3 chain stitches, 1 connecting stitch…

IMG_2070_roundtshirtrug
going around and around the circle.

IMG_2073_roundtshirtrug
When I ran out of strips, I pulled the end of my string through the last loop, and tucked it into the rug– because one day I will have more t-shirts to dismantle, and this rug will keep getting bigger!

IMG_2253_roundtshirtrug_1

TIPS

  • As you are working, make sure not to pull your loops too tight, or stretch your chain when you’re doing a connecting stitch. The looser you work the flatter the rug will sit.
  • Different shirts will make thicker or thinner strings based on the thickness of their fabric. I opted for a very irregular look with lots of inconsistencies in my strips (width ranging from 1″ – 2″) but if you want a more regular look, stick with shirts of a similar weight, and cut your strips about 1.25″ wide.
  • If it’s looking weird, pull out your loops and start over! Once you get the hang of this version of finger crochet you’ll fly through this project, so you will quickly make up the time redoing it. Practice has never been more fun.
  • If you can, work for longish stretches to keep your tension consistent. This is a great “while watching tv or daydreaming” activity.
  • As always, plan to make one more rug than you have cats.

IMG_2196_roundtshirtrug_1

DIY: Spookily Free and Easy Ghosts

IMG_1479_spookyghosts
When I was a kid my mom came up with all sorts of awesome crafts for us to do, and being a typical goth-in-the-making I loved the halloween crafts most of all. One year we made cheesecloth ghosts with balloons and glue and it’s a project that has haunted me to this day.

I decided that I really wanted some ghost friends, but lacking balloons and cheesecloth I decided to make some up, Alison style. (IE: Free, Quick, and Fun.)

IMG_1396_spookyghosts

SUPPLIES

  • At least a couple of feet of sheer or thin fabric – old sheets or window sheers work great!
  • All-purpose flour
  • Bottles: Soda, water, or wine. Glass or plastic.
  • Wire or wire coat hangers
  • Plastic bags
  • Rubber bands
  • Scissors
  • A bucket or bin to mix your flour paste in

Step 1: The Form

IMG_1417_spookyghosts
To begin will make a simple armature out of wire (or out of a wire hanger). Cut a piece about 24″ long, and twist it together to form one big loop.

IMG_1426_spookyghosts
Slip the loop over the neck of your bottle, and twist the arms slightly so that they sit securely on the bottle and point slightly upwards. Using a scrap piece of fabric or paper, form a ball shaped head over the neck of the bottle and secure it with a rubber band.

IMG_1440_spookyghosts
To make the armature (form of the ghost) easier to remove, cover it with a plastic grocery bag, and secure it with a rubber band.

Measure the height of your ghost form from the base, across the head, and to the base on the back side. Cut a square of fabric this size to cover your form. (This is a great time to tear your fabric instead of cutting, if you want. Frayed edges are a bonus!)

 

Step 2: Stiffening and Forming the Fabric

IMG_1447_spookyghosts
Although flour may not last forever when used as a paste, it works perfectly for a ghost that will only haunt your house for a year or two. Combine 4 parts water with 1 part all-purpose flour in a large container and mix well with your fingers. Soak your ghost fabric, and wring it gently.

IMG_1448_spookyghosts
Spread the fabric over the ghost form, with a corner of the fabric pointing forwards.

IMG_1450_spookyghosts
Using your creativity (and maybe a clip or two) shape the cloth as creepily as you want! (I loved adding a fold along the “hair line” so that it looked like my ghost was in a cloak.)

IMG_1456_spookyghosts
If you’d like, remove some of the excess fabric from the “arms” of your ghost. (Make sure to leave fabric puddled at the front and back; this will ensure that your ghost will sit up when it’s all dry.)

Leave your new little friend to dry overnight, with a fan blowing if you can. When it’s completely dry, gently pull the bottle form out of the stiff fabric. (If it’s not firm enough to stand, you can mix up some more of the flour and water and paint it onto your fabric while it’s still on the form. You may want to use a higher ratio of flour to water.)

IMG_1477_spookyghosts
Boo!

IMG_1485_spookyghosts

IMG_1505_spookyghosts
If you’re feeling extra crafty, you can paint right on your ghosts with watercolor or acrylic paints. I have some scary plans for one of mine.

IMG_1482_spookyghosts

Use What You’ve Got!

If you don’t have scraps of fabric lying around, this project is also fun with thin paper, tissue paper, or even paper towels. Just make one adjustment: instead of soaking the paper in your paste, lay the paper across your form and paint the paste on with your fingers or a craft paint brush. Saturate the paper slowly and let it fall again the form. You can add multiple layers of paper for more texture (like the tissue paper ghost above) and even cut out a mouth and eyes!

Stick an LED “candle” in it, and things get even creepier!

IMG_1626_spookyghosts
Scary Ghost Sound!

What’s frightening you this season?

DIY: Glitter Pumpkin Candles

DIY: Glitter Pumpkin Candles  #autumn #fallcrafts

Fall is my absolute favorite time of year to make things. There’s something about the crisp autumn breeze that makes me want to spend an afternoon with a hot cup of tea and a craft project. I’ve been collecting small pumpkins for the past few weeks and drawing inspiration from this post by Hello Natural, I decided to make my own pumpkin candles.

DIY: Glitter Pumpkin Candles  #autumn #fallcrafts

Supplies Needed

• Small pumpkins
• Soy wax flakes
• #2 candle wick
• Wick tabs
• 30 drops clove essential oil (optional)
• Glitter

Additional Tools

• Carving knife
• Spoon
• Pliers
• Tin can (or double boiler)
• Popsicle stick
• Clothes pins
• Scissors

Cut the top off of each pumpkin and use a spoon to scrape out the insides.

DIY: Glitter Pumpkin Candles  #autumn #fallcrafts

Prep your wick with metal tabs (alternatively you could also use pre-tabbed wicks). Cut the wick to size and insert it through the metal tab with the end of of the wick lining up to the bottom of the tab. Use pliers to pinch the metal tab tightly around the wick. Place into the center of each pumpkin. Use a clothespin to hold the wick into place.

DIY: Glitter Pumpkin Candles  #autumn #fallcrafts

Using a double broiler, melt soy wax flakes over medium heat. Use a popsicle stick to stir the wax. Once completely melted, add the essential oil (optional).

DIY: Glitter Pumpkin Candles  #autumn #fallcrafts

Pour melted wax into the prepared pumpkins. Allow wax to dry almost completely, then sprinkle glitter over the top. Use a hairdryer to ‘hot top’ the glittered wax. The wax should remelt slightly and allow the glitter to set on the top. Allow to dry completely and trim wicks.

DIY: Glitter Pumpkin Candles  #autumn #fallcrafts

Simple as that! Now you can light them up and enjoy a hot cup of pumpkin spice.

DIY: Glitter Pumpkin Candles  #autumn #fallcrafts

SHOW+TELL: Mounting a Phone to a Tripod Using Sculpey

IMG_1329_tshirtrugWhen I was working on the rag rug post I had to finally face up to the fact that I need a tripod for my phone. In a crunch, I decided to try my hand at making one, using an extra phone case and other materials I had around.

IMG_1147_tshirtrug

SUPPLIES

 
IMG_1282_tshirtrug
First I rolled out a 3/8″ piece of clay and cut it into a fun shape. I pressed the nut into the bottom portion to give me a template to cut out with my craft knife.

IMG_1289_tshirtrug
I placed the nut into the hole, and pressed the clay firmly around it.

IMG_1293_tshirtrug
I worked the clay form around the camera case, and squeezed it into a speech bubble shape. (Why not?)

IMG_1296_tshirtrug
Since I was going with a speech bubble, and had some lead type on hand, I pressed a cheery little message into the clay before baking it.

Afterwards I remove the clay from the case, and added a couple of pieces of wire across the bottom to reinforce the form. Then I popped the whole thing into the oven at 275˚ for 22 minutes.

IMG_1299_tshirtrug
When it was done cooking and cooling, I used pieces of double stick mounting tape to attach it to the extra phone case…
 
IMG_1305_tshirtrug
and bolted it onto my tripod mount.

IMG_1309_tshirtrug
A quick project that let me record some videos of the trickier parts of the weaving process.

IMG_1329_tshirtrug
Now, to admit the reason this is a “Show+Tell” instead of a “DIY”. This little guy worked great in a pinch, but I am scared to death that it will break if I’m not careful enough. I tried my best to reinforce it, but it’s just light weight polymer clay.

Have you seen or made a custom mount for your phone that can withstand repeated use? Any advice for making this design work?