Vday gifts!

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Another post coming at you! Boom! Nothing for two years then two back to back! Amazeballs.

Every year, I make a gift for the special someone I’m dating. I’ve done a variety of projects from little books made from playing cards, to coasters, clocks and more. For valentine’s day, my gift was twofold – a small sculpture, and an offering of heart-themed finger foods.

First, I followed this tutorial to make a lightbulb sculpture (for lack of a better word). I had a box of dead lightbulbs hanging around the house (WHY?) and followed this tutorial to hollow out one of the bulbs. I of course broke the first attempt, so I fished out yet another dead bulb from the Box Of Dead Bulbs (WHY DO I HAVE THIS?! LOL). I broke the black part at the bottom (which is glass, btw!), penetrated the tube, pulled out the filaments and washed out the powder from inside the bulb. Fun fact – I always thought the glass was just frosted white that way. Nope!

Once that was done, I bought some red wire from Michael’s with a gift card, and formed the heart-shaped filaments. That was sort of tricky as the instructions aren’t quite as cut and dry as they say.

Then I headed to Home Depot to look through their offcut bins for a suitable chunk of wood. I found a really raw piece, but the guy told me he couldn’t cut it on their tablesaw because it was too short and wouldn’t fit through the guide. Safety issue. He let me leave with the piece without paying for it (technically, they’re not allowed to sell stuff from that bin anyway). I took it home and put my mom’s boyfriend to work that weekend.

We set up his workmate bench thing, the circular saw, and a belt sander and got cookin! He had the brilliant idea of using a spade bit to make a hole to sink the bulb into. It worked brilliantly – both providing a sinkable base, and a hole to mount the red wires in. Lots of sanding was done, and then I did some more for good measure.

I took the block home, and put some hot glue in the hole, and sunk the wires. Then I used a printout of the text I wanted to use across the front of the block. I printed it in reverse, then used acrylic gel media to transfer the print to the block. Once that dried overnight, I ran some water over the block, and rubbed at it until the paper came off. I manually touched up some of the lettering since more came off than I wanted, and then glued the bulb into the perfect hole we had sunk for it. Et voila! Project complete!


The second half of the project was some finger foods to snack on before our 9 PM dinner reservations. My mom came over and we worked together to make tulips out of carrots and cucumbers, heart-shaped cherry tomatoes, heart-shaped sausages, heart shaped jam sammiches, watermelons with heart shapes cut out and pineapple heart shapes put in, strawberry roses (on pilfered Starbucks stirsticks!), sugar free chocolate cupcakes with peanut butter icing, and, not pictured, heart-shaped tangerines. It turned out to be just enough to stave off our hunger until dinner.


I also made a heart-themed card. I used a goofy picture of us (where I looked adorbs, natch), and cut out a heart shape along the spine of a piece of construction paper. I glued the photo to the front of the card and the inside of the heart cutout, so that the front page had essentially two openings. In the pic, we’re both making duck lips, so it looks like we’re kissing when the card closes. I’ll spare you the actual pic, but will post an idea similar to mine:

heart card

That’s all for now, folks! Stay tuned because I have more stuff to post, and I’m on a posting roll!

Posted on February 15th 2017 in food, Housewares, Woodwork

Making a picnic table!

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I was asked to help build a picnic table on the weekend, and seeing as how I’d never made one before, I gladly said yes!

Our plans called for 2x4s, but we only had 2x6s on hand.


We decided to alter the plans and go for it anyway. First we built the table top



Then we added the legs



Next step was adding the center supports


We have a table!


Then we added the seats, and discovered that the table was really quite big. Much bigger than we had initially imagined…


Next came the supports for the seats to the center of the table


A little sanding


Et voilĂ !


The whole project took about 6.5 hours which was almost on track except that we had to redo the seats as we were off by a few inches. It made the tall folks feel normal, but it made the shorter folks feel really short. We also had a few lake breaks since it was something like 45 degrees out!

There’s talk about painting a Union Jack on it, but for now we’re all pretty pleased with it!

Posted on July 17th 2012 in Woodwork