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Christmas Countdown: Advent Calendars

Christmas Countdown: Advent Calendars


It’s almost here! And, the countdown will soon begin. It’s the 25 day period before Christmas. One great way to celebrate the season is with an Advent Calendar.

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Antique Advent Calendar   ( Advent Calendar from Germany )

 

It’s almost here! And, the countdown will soon begin. It’s the 25 day period before Christmas. One great way to celebrate the season is with an Advent Calendar.

 

Here’s an easy and fun way to use a candle as an advent calendar. Each day the candle is lit and burned down to the next number. You can make one by using craft paint on the candle itself.

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Happy Thanksgiving: 15 Ways to Show Thanks With Color

Happy Thanksgiving: 15 Ways to Show Thanks With Color


Of all the things to be thankful for, color is at the top of the list. Color is saturated into every fiber of our lives. It gives variety to our days, our moments, our very lives. It is there in our darkest moments and happiest memories. It can influence moods and reactions. It is there for us when we brainstorm inovative ideas, new marketing techniques, or complicated craft projects. Color is simply inspiring. So, on this Thanksgiving Day, remember to take a look around you and notice all the beautiul colors that this season has to offer.

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How are you celebrating color this season?

Fall Leaf Garland from Maureen Cracknell Handmade as a part of Celebrate Color 

Celebrate color this season with a leaf garland made of felt and yarn. Incorporate a gorgeous color palette into your home's decor without the crunchy mess of real leaves.

Project by Triple Play

Dazzling. Do you think these sparkly aqua-blue accents steer a little bit away from traditional fall colors? You have to admit, it adds a nice depth to the overall setting and complements that traditional orange nicely.

Thankful Tree" by Simply Vintage Girl

Elegant. Bring the outdoors in to create thankful bits of autumn pastels and pattern mixtures combined in a "Thankful Tree."

Parents.com

For the kiddos. Shades of brown add warmth and provide an earthy feel in this Turkey centerpiece. Choose a fun and colorful palette for the thankful feathers.

Tradition, (What Are You) Thankful Four?

What are you thankful...4? A great excuse to use color in so many ways! Write what you're thankful for on colorful number fours cut from scrapbooking or construction paper and share. Turn them in to ornaments to display all weekend. Keep them around as reminders.

"...one year I cut large 4s from paper and placed one on each person's plate. Just before dinner, we wrote the things we were thankful for on our cutouts, then took turns sharing our lists..." - Candice Steelman (reader at Disney Family Fun)

By Holiday Crafts and Creations

There's always room to go classic. Traditional autumn colors make a space warm and inviting. These edible place settings using M&M's to imitate Indian Corn are quite fun!

KABOOSE.com under Thanksgiving Crafts

Create a three dimensional palette with blocks and display an appropriately thankful message.

Design Sponge - DIY Project Autumn Leaf Bouquet 

What better way to say thank you to the beauty of color than to use fallen leaves to create vibrant autumn roses.

avery & anderson - Fall Decor' Part 4: THANKS be to upcycling wine bottles!

Get funky, use a few recycled wine bottles, a bit of paint and some other odds and ends to create and display a thankful word.

Crafty Katie - Fall Burlap Wreath

What would fall be without a wreath? Burlap offers a very earthy-happy texture, while adding a mix of traditional or non-traditional colors livens it up.

FineCraftGuild.com - Abundance Seed Balls

Blending tradition with innovation - did you look close enough? I took a double-take after realizing those were bean-balls in the cornucopia! How creative and fitting to the season. A gentle reminder of warm soup on chilly fall evenings.

INKspired Creations - Paper Pumpkins | Teresa Collins - Paper Thanksgiving Pumpkins

Autumn wouldn't be autumn without a couple of paper pumpkins leftover from Halloween. Another way to utilize a mix of patterns and palettes.

PLAID - Thankful Art Collage

The paper flower on this thankful journal has a nice whimsical feel to it and reminds me of autumn leaves. Writing down what you are thankful for is always a great way to reflect and come back to on days when you aren't feeling so thankful.

 Kind Over Matter - Thanksgiving Fortune Cookies

This simple, yet unique idea encompasses the idea that being thankful can also remind us of the good things that are yet to come.

Incorporating autumn colors into our homes and Thanksgiving celebrations is a special way to recreate that warm feeling we experience when we start listing all the things that we are thankful for. This reason, above all, is why color should be remembered on Thanksgiving Day.

A big Thank you to all of you COLOURlovers for loving color and making our community flourish with so many beautiful creations! Be safe and colorful on this holiday! - The COLOURlovers Team


Creations Used:

Celebrate_AutumnThankful_SeatingAutumn_Thankful_TreeFeathered_TurkeyAlice_in_ChainsHexagonalAutumn_MMsThankful_BlocksLeaf_RosesAutumn_WineFall_Burlap_WreathBean-BallsWeightless_PumpkinPumpkin_PaperelliThankful_JournalThankful_JournalDotty_distressedThankful_FortunesFall_FortunesWheels_within_wheels


header credit: Leaf Garland

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Halloween Colors: Where Did They Come From?

Halloween Colors: Where Did They Come From?


Pumpkin orange and midnight black—the predominant colors of Halloween combine the Autumn season with darkness and scary entities.

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(source)

But how did these colors really come to dominate this most unusual holiday? The truth is, when it comes to the question of the origin of the Halloween colors, it can be hard to separate the opinions from the facts.

Unbleached beeswax candles (source | source)

The most common opinion about where the colors originated is steeped in the rich history of the Celtics and the Druids, with the burning of unbleached beeswax candles (orange) and ceremonial caskets draped in a black cloth.

Feng Shui candles are said to help create peace in the center of your house (source)

Now, let’s step into the world of Feng Shui, where a balance of energy reigns supreme. Believers of Feng Shui feel that the colors of orange and black were chosen because they are on opposite sides of the energy spectrum: orange is warm, happy, lively, and brings to mind the bounty of the fall harvest, while black represents mystery, void, power and protection (source).

(leaves source)

The most obvious answer to this question is that the classic color of Autumn is orange, while black can be equated with the approaching darkness of winter.

spider glasses | felted toysnapkinsBunting 

And, if you want to get really extreme, some people claim that black and orange were the only colors left after Christmas took red and green, and Easter took all of the pastels.

Of course, Halloween colors are not just limited to orange and black, you will also see a lot of blood red, eerie green, ghostly white and deep purples. So, where do these colors come into play? Here is a plausible explanation.

Celtic wheel of the year (source)

Going back to the Celtic festival of Samhain in 700 B.C., it signified the end of the harvest and the approaching of winter, or the end of one year and the start of another. The Celts believed that ancestral spirits joined them on this day when the past and the present are about to cross paths, which is why it was also considered a “day of the dead.”(source)

goblin | bat necklace | brooch | Boo

All of the Halloween colors seem to implicate some kind of connection to death and dying. Red is a classic implication of blood, fire and demons, while green represents goblins, monsters, and zombies. Purple draws in a bit of the supernatural and mysticism, while white reflects ghosts, mummies and a full moon.

Stepping away from color for a moment, Halloween is also dominated by an abundance of Jack-o-lanterns and children out trick-or-treating. These traditions also have an interesting origin.

Stingy Jack (source)

Jack-o-lanterns trace back to the Irish myth of Stingy Jack who died and, finding himself rejected by both heaven and hell, was forced to roam the darkness seeking a resting place for his soul. Legend has it that he hollowed out a turnip and used it to carry a coal to light his way. This said, the first Jack-o-lanterns were carved in turnips, and only changed to pumpkins when the tradition was brought to America.

jack-o-lanterns (source)

Trick-or-treating came about during the Great Irish Potato Famine. On Halloween, peasants would beg for food from the wealthy. They played practical jokes on those that refused to give them something. So, to avoid being tricked, the wealthy gave out cookies, candies, and fruit. It is easy to see how this turned into modern-day trick-or-treating. (source)

bracelet | plastic mustaches / lips | zombie clips | toy

No matter what history tells us, the Halloween color palette we see today is warm, bright, fun, and sometimes a little spooky. Each color has a place in the holiday and can find a place in your life as well, whether you are wearing it, eating it, decorating with it, or simply reading about it. So, have a happy, safe and colorful Halloween!


header credit: purple bats
Happy_Halloween!


Halloween Colors

Trick_or_TreatOctobers_EndTrick_o_TreatPumpkin_Moon_IF23toxic_psychedelicHappy_Halloween!halloween_treatPumpkin_Moon_IF23Nuclear_HalloweenHALLOWEEN_SOCKShappy_halloween!Retail_Halloweenho_ho_ho-lloween!!This_is_HalloweenHalloweenspooky_stuff

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Project from Sharing Stitches: Amazing Artist's Apron + Giveaway

Project from Sharing Stitches: Amazing Artist's Apron + Giveaway


In two previous posts—one for the Market Bag and the other for the iPad Sleeve—I shared with you some techniques I love to use for painting layers on canvas and then using the canvas to sew projects with. Well this time, I wanted to kick it up one notch by adding some hand stitching to my painted fabric. I chose the Amazing Artist’s Apron from the book, Sharing Stitches by Chrissie Grace. Liz Lamoreux—one of 15 contributing artists in Chrissie’s book—designed this project.

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I was already of fan of Liz’s aprons, so I was excited that she shared how to make one in this book! The yummy palette I was inspired to draw from for my apron—How To—comes from lover Phoenixfire. So, with my palette in mind, I headed to Michael’s for paint and embroidery floss and found it easy to find all of the colors in both instances. Having the ColorSchemer app on my phone made this super handy, as I could just pull up the palette and have it in my hand as I visually scanned the products.

How_To

I started by painting plain pieces of light-weight cotton (I only used a small amount of duck canvas this time) with the five basic colors, then had fun layering them with spatters, drips and, of course, lots of stencils. After my fabrics were dry, I cut all the pieces I would need, according to the directions in the book. The focal point of this apron is the pocket, which is a mini quilt of sorts, made up of strips and squares of the various painted fabrics. The pocket is lined and divided into four sections—making it like four different pockets—but before I sewed the patchwork pocket to its lining, I went to town having fun with hand-stitched doodles (or embroidery if you prefer).

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Painted Canvas: iPad Sleeve + Giveaway

Painted Canvas: iPad Sleeve + Giveaway


How exciting—I get to give something away! Several people liked the Market Bag that I posted last time (thanks so much for the love, lovers!), so I thought it would be really fun to make something to giveaway this time. The palette—Sirus IFRC—that provided the inspiration for this project comes from napkin guy and I loved working with this combination of colors. The pattern comes from Sew4Home and was designed by Alicia Thommas (edited by Liz Johnson). With the exception of omitting swivel hooks (instead I used center-release buckles), using a concealed magnetic clasp instead of a nickel one (and, of course, using my own painted canvas and a coordinating fleece), I made the project just as it was presented.

Sirus_IFRC

It’s really a lot of fun to make projects from canvas that you have painted and made your own mark on. The person who first got me excited about painting layers on canvas with this approach is Roxanne Padgett. I took her Luscious Layered Canvas class last spring and have been having a grand ole time ever since. I continue to experiment and try new things and new ways of making each piece uniquely my own. You’ll be seeing more projects from me where I take this path using a palette, so I thought you might like to see briefly, how I go about painting the canvas. And if you don’t want know all that, just skip to the bottom and leave a comment if you’d like to try and win this bag. I’ll never know the difference.

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Project from Mixed and Stitched: Palette Inspired Market Bag

Project from Mixed and Stitched: Palette Inspired Market Bag


Hi Lovers! I’m super excited to have the opportunity to share my projects and musings with you here on COLOURlovers. Who am I? My name is Tonia Davenport and I am the Acquisitions Editor for North Light Craft Books. I have to admit, I really love my job because not only do I get to learn so much from the books I edit, I get to meet so many talented artists in the mixed-media community and I get to play with all sort of products and projects so I can share them with the visitors of our Web site, CreateMixedMedia.com and now here, too, with the lovers at COLOURlovers.

I’m still a bit new here and learning my way around, but so far I am having a really wonderful experience getting inspiration for my creative projects from the palettes here. Last month, Miaka’s palette Curiosity Killed inspired me to make a pencil case (see above).
Curiosity_Killed

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Artist Interview: Laura Berger

Artist Interview: Laura Berger


I discovered Laura Berger's work very much by accident. I was visiting some close friends in Seattle and I wandered into a home store that carried her prints. The print I purchased was called Be Nice to Yourself (still available on her Etsy shop). Something about the design and the little creatures she created really captivated me, and I never forgot it. In fact, I held on to her business card, which was neatly tucked into the back of the bag the print was sealed in, and when I looked her up online I discovered a whole world of work she'd created, from paintings on wood to precious little dishes. In short, I wanted to buy everything -- and that's when I knew I had an artist on my hands that the world needed to know about.

Lucky for us here at COLOURlovers, Laura had time to speak to us for an exclusive interview in which she speaks about her creation process, inspirations, dreams of one day seeing her creatures as collectible figures and more. If you're as capitivated as we were, you can keep up with Laura on her Flickr page, through her blog (listed above) or on her Etsy page.

COLOURlovers: Do you remember the first time you created art? When was it?

Laura: I distinctly remember bringing home a giant fish that I made when I was in kindergarten.  It was made out of two pieces of fish-shaped brown kraft paper that we painted fish faces onto, stapled together, and stuffed with something or other to make it three-dimensional.  I showed it to my mom and then I watched Mister Roger's Neighborhood & ate a sandwich.


I_feel_weird

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Earth Day Book Giveaway & Recycled T-Shirt Flower Pin Tutorial

Earth Day Book Giveaway & Recycled T-Shirt Flower Pin Tutorial


To celebrate Earth Day today we have, Tiffany Threadgould of RePlayground.com and Terracycle.net, here to teach us how to re-purpose an old t-shirt to make these adorable flower pins. Tiffany just launched her first book, ReMake It! (by Sterling Publishing). It's super adorable and is a pretty fun book to have on hand whether you have kids or you just love to re-purpose. We'll be doing a giveaway for 3 of these books at the tail end of the tutorial with a BONUS PRIZE, so stay tuned!

T-Shirt Scrap Flower Pin

MATERIALS:

  • T-shirt
  • ruler
  • washable marker or pencil
  • fabric scissors
  • twist tie
  • button with two holes
  • pin back or safety pin

Use one T-shirt to make a single color flower, or mix it up and use strips from a few different shirts for a flower with different colors.

INSTRUCTIONS:

1. Measure and cut ¾-inch wide strips from the bottom of a T-shirt. From those strips, cut eight 8-inch long pieces.

2. Pull on the ends of each strip and stretch them until their edges curl. Snip three holes into each strip—one in the middle and two more, each ½ inch from the ends. Be careful not to cut across the whole strip, just to make small holes.

3. Slip the ends of the twist tie through a button, and pull it through so it is snug across the front of the button. Twist the ends of the twist tie together tightly until they are completely twisted at the back of the button.

4. Thread the end of the twist tie through the hole at the center of one of the T-shirt strips. Then, thread the twist tie through the holes on the ends of the T-shirt strip. Repeat this for all the rest of the strips

5. Holding the T-shirt strips and button together, untwist the twist tie ends. Insert them through the holes in pin back or wrap them around the safety pin (whichever pin you decide to use). Adjust the twist tie until the flower and pin are held firmly in place on the pin back. Remake a whole bouquet of flower pins and grow a garden on your shirt!

More About The Author

Tiffany Threadgould is a design junkie who gives scrap materials a second life. She's the head of design atTerraCycle, a company that collects and creates products from waste. She also keeps up her own green biz,RePlayGround, where you can find ReMake It recycling kits and oodles of DIY projects. Tiffany thinks that garbage has feelings too and can sometimes be found talking to her pile of junk at her design studio in Brooklyn, N.Y.


THE GIVEAWAY!

Tiffany was so kind to send us three (3) books to give to you! We are going to do another random pick from the user comments on this one. So if you'd like a cool copy of ReMake It! You must do the following:

Leave a comment telling us what your favorite art/craft style is be that a link out to your most favorite craft blogger(s) or just list your top 1-5+ most favorite things to work with be that modge podge, sewing, quilting, re-purposing, scrapbooking (traditional or digital), card making, painting, etc. The sky is the limit in the craft world!

BONUS PRIZE!

Bonus Prize is a $25 Gift Card at COLOURlovers partner, Spoonflower.com.

I will be posting this article on the COLOURlovers Facebook wall. All you have to do is:

  1. 1) LIKE the COLOURlovers Facebook Page
  2. 2) SHARE the article on your facebook wall
  3. 3) Leave a comment on the article I posted on our fb wall which should include your COLOURlovers USERNAME.

We will be conducting a random drawing from the facebook post commentary. As long as you followed the steps, you will be included.

If you have already LIKED our facebook page, then that step is done. You won't be able to see the SHARE or COMMENT on the COLOURlovers facebook wall until you have LIKED our page.

I've posted THIS (the above image shows what it will look like) blog article to our facebook wall. Re-Post it to your wall by clicking the link on it, SHARE (see red arrows in the image). And then make a COMMENT letting me know you shared it, and let me know your username on COLOURlovers. The facebook contest is ONLY for the $25 at Spoonflower.com. If you want the book you must ALSO comment on the blog post here.


You may play and qualify for BOTH prizes (ReMake It! book AND the $25 at Spoonflower.com). The contest will run from today, April 22nd, 2011, until Thursday, April 28th with winners announced Friday, April 29th, 2011. You must be a COLOURlovers user to qualify for either prize. So register if you need to!

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RAW COLOR - Design

RAW COLOR - Design


The work of Daniera ter Haar & Christoph Brach, who have become better known by the name of one of their projects, Raw Color, is highly prismatic, covering the spectrum between art, design, photography and color research by mixing the powerful colors of vegetables, innovative color harvesting processes, with unique applications for print and textiles. Each project is created with an astute design sense and captured with stunningly composed photography.

The Eindhoven, Netherlands based team uses color as the 'connection between their different practices' posing questions like, 'what is the nature of a color and what is the connection to its physical state?' This post focuses on their design work. In a pervious posts we covered their research on vegetable pigments, and in an upcoming post we will cover their use of photography.



This is Basic

Planes, shadows, hues and reflections are subject of this research. For this study we have chosen for paper because this material has all appropriate qualities we were looking for. Paper is both flexible and stiff , it has colour, structure, it reflects and absorbs the light. Besides that it is one of the most natural materials for us to work with. By means of folding and cutting two-dimensional sheets are transformed in three-dimensional shapes, that form abstract images and shaded illusions.

The series of posters is part of the installation 'This is Basic'. The big pop-up shapes are triangles, circles and squares, by unfolding the poster the shapes open up and become three-dimensional. This transformation highlights the effect of shadow and reflection on the surfaces and shades.

The series is limited to 8 basic colours, both used for the shapes and the background, that makes 192 possible combinations. For those who are interested, they are for sale!

The booklets were sketches and starting point of our research at the same time. They are based on paper planes, their relation and interaction with each other. The contrasts of cut paper planes form new compositions every time you turn a page.


StrijpX

StrijpX is a design platform established in Eindhoven, showcasing emerging talent in product, fashion and graphic design. The core of this visual identity is the special developed dessin, composed of geometric shapes relating to the letter X. Every layer makes efficient use of the C,M,Y based offset printing process. During the printing the colours are turned on and off to reach a maximum diversity of transparencies, overlaps and colour combinations. The four basic combinations were created in one print run, C/M, C/Y, M/Y, C/M/Y. All on papers from 90, 120 and 250 grams. The offset printed sheets are finalised by a black information layer, adding the specific information of every exhibition. The black is added by the usage of silkscreening, hereby the C,M,Y,K is completed.


Keukenconfessies

For the food design studio 'Keukenconfessies' we searched for a mixture of moods, prints, colours and printing techniques. We were asked to design a ‘logo’ that could change, for this we came up with different, independent shapes coming from food and cooking, some more abstract then others. With these shapes you could mix endless combinations. For the business cards we added a stamp layer, to make the identity a bit more rough and playfull. The identity is based on a simple and strong shape language. For the typography is chosen a black and bold lettertype, it gives a robust feeling next to the colourful shapes. For all the printed matter we used uncoated paper. The stationary paper is only printed on the back site, here the overview from all illustrations are visible, in this case they can use the paper for different occasions.


Other Design Work

kunstlicht grafiek

 

 

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RAW COLOR - RBP Printing with Vegetable Ink

RAW COLOR - RBP Printing with Vegetable Ink


The work of Daniera ter Haar & Christoph Brach, who have become better known by the name of one of their projects, Raw Color, is highly prismatic, covering the spectrum between art, design, photography and color research by mixing the powerful colors of vegetables, innovative color harvesting processes, with unique applications for print and textiles. Each project is created with an astute design sense and captured with stunningly composed photography.

The Eindhoven, Netherlands based team uses color as the 'connection between their different practices' posing questions like, 'what is the nature of a color and what is the connection to its physical state?' This post focuses on their research on vegetable pigments. Two other posts to follow will focus on their design and photography.


“Color is a really nice connection between those disciplines. We use it almost as a material, and it’s transformative the way it can make something seem hard or light or heavy.”

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