Archive for the ‘Hobbies and Crafts’ Category.

How to Design Postcards to Meet Standard Postcard Sizes

When it comes to designing postcards, there is more to just coming up with a great, eye-catching design. Anyone who wants to design postcards that will actually be used needs to be familiar upfront with what the standard postcard sizes are.

This is because you want to make sure that the design you come up with will actually fit onto the card well. You probably know that if you have designed advertisements in the past that if you worked out the design on one rectangle, you will need to do some rearranging in order to have it fit a slightly different shaped rectangle. The same is true when it comes to postcards. Many of the standard sizes, such as four by six or five by seven are simply larger versions of the same shaped rectangle. But there are other popular sizes, like the four by nine, that are a completely different shape altogether. These are going to need either a different design, or a very much rearranged version of the design that you created for the first card.

When submitting your design for people to use, you will want to label what size it is intended to be used with. You might just make a design that can only work with one sized card, or, if you want your work to be more widely used, you can create several versions of the same design that will work with a variety of postcard shapes and sizes.

There are many people who are looking online for readily made postcard designs that they can use for their own postcards. Creating designs for people to use is a great way of getting your name out and letting people know who you are and what a great designer you are. Just make sure you make your design usable!

Developing Your Artist Ability

Despite what you may have heard or experienced, you do not have a natural artistic ability to be able to draw well. Becoming a good artist, like most things, requires the right attitude, determination, and state of mind to succeed. People of any age, ability, or occupation can learn to draw, even if it has been years since you last tried.

Perhaps you have been told that the only thing necessary to draw well is to look closely and simply draw what is visible in front of you. This is not always useful. You must have some other motivation and direction.

The best place to start is to find subjects that you actually enjoy drawing. If you are bored with the drawing, you will likely not finish or it may seem like a chore. It helps to have an understanding of the subject itself before you begin to reproduce it on paper. For example, if you would like to learn how to draw a face, it is helpful to understand proportions, bone structures, and muscles in the face. Drawing is a learned skill and it requires a knowledge of whatever you are trying capture on paper.

As you find what you are interested in drawing and learn about those subjects, your drawing will improve with practice. Everyone makes mistakes as they learn. This can actually be a great learning tool and is often just a step in the process.

Buying expensive pencils or equipment will not make you a better artist. Before you spend a lot of money, you should spend some time practicing. Perhaps the most important part of having success in drawing is self-motivation. With study, practice, motivation, and persistence your drawing ability will continue to improve. If your goal is to develop your drawing ability, do not let your age or ability stop you from improving.

Choosing Yarn For Knitting

When you are first learning how to knit your yarn choice should be something fairly inexpensive. When I teach people how to knit I tend to stick with acrylic or cotton based yarns. While acrylic yarn is the most inexpensive yarn to work with, many people find the texture of cotton yarn easier to handle when just starting. As you progress you will want to invest into natural fiber yarns. These yarns are much more expensive however, they last longer.

Many people make the mistake of knitting afghans or clothing out of acrylic yarn. This can cause problems with your project over time. Acrylic yarn tends to "pill". Pilling is when the yard brakes apart and the fibers fuzz up. Often times acrylic yarn can only be hand washed and will need to be shaved. Shaving a knitted garment or blanket is a way of removing the accumulated fuzz. The other problem with acrylic garments is that acrylic tends to be a very rough material. It does not make for comfortable clothing.

If you are looking for inexpensive yarn to knit clothing or large projects you should try an acrylic blend. Acrylic can be blended with a natural fiber to give it a softer texture. It will also pill less. There are many wonderful natural fibers that can be blended with acrylic or cotton. Natural fiber yarns come from two sources. Animals and plants are where you will find most natural yarn. Llama fur and sheep's wool is what makes up most animal based natural yarn. These yarns tend to be very expensive but they last much longer. Some of these fibers can be machine washed and do not pill as much as acrylic.

When using new yarns be sure and knit a gauge swatch before starting on the project. This will save you a lot of time and money. If you're interested in sewing, then be sure to check out Pfaff 260 about Pfaff sewing machines, you can also see my review on Pfaff embroidery machines.

Decorating With Daisy Flowers

Silk flowers look very attractive when used strategically. It is very easy to beautify a dull or plain décor by simply using them resourcefully. These are capable of adding color and character to any simple decoration. Silk daisy flowers are beautiful and exquisite and have no less charm than real flowers.

The market is flooded with wide options of silk daisies in myriad colors and sizes. It is available in single sticks or like a whole bunch. People may embellish with the lone stick or may create their own bouquet using single or multiple colors. When positioned appropriately, the arrangement is sure to make an impact.

Artificial flowers are a very inexpensive way to give a quick and proficient makeover to any room. They can very easily cheer up any monotonous setup and give an incredibly dazzling effect. The flowers lend a very summery feel to a regular and boring room. The room instantly gets a vibrant and refreshing new look.

Nowadays they are being used in weddings even more than fresh flowers. Natural flowers tend to wilt after a certain point. But the fake flowers look fresh all through yet have no difference with the genuine flowers when it comes to looking good. Also, they are easily available throughout the year and their price doesn’t fluctuate seasonally.  In addition, there is more information about daisy flowers and other flowers at
When using in homes or office, they are very easy to maintain. They may be arranged in glass or porcelain vases with or without water. They need dry dusting regularly and occasionally need to hand or dry washed to remain radiant and clean. They may be easily washed at home using a mild detergent. It is hard to disregard the beauty or ignore the appeal of silk daisy flowers. They may be purchased from any artificial flower shop or even online. It is as if the flowers are just waiting to be acquired and placed at the right spot to brighten up any place.

The Work of a Paper Folder Extended into Space

Did you know that there are applications from origami techniques used in space?  There is a particular fold that enables the rapid expansion and contraction of paper like material, which is used in satellites.  Some interesting things have been happening in the world of origami since the invention of the computer that have enabled calculations to create very complex models without the need to fold the paper to test it out.  It is interesting that an art form with as much simplicity and history as origami could benefit so much from modern methods of calculation.

What a computer enables the paper folder to do is look into possible folds without having to test and retest the folds with paper.  With a computer model, one can create incredibly complex models like insects by having the computer calculate the limits of the how the paper can be folded.  It might seem simple to figure out how to fold a single sheet of paper into something, but in reality this is one of the biggest challenges.  Folding some like a limb out from the sheet of paper while allowing the remaining part of the paper to be folded into other limbs or the body can be extremely challenging.

Along with the use of computers to help model origami techniques, paper folding has undergone some impressive changes in the past century.  This includes one of the most prolific paper folders in history with a backlog of over fifty thousand origami creations.  While the art may have dealt specifically with the simple in the past, people have dedicated their lives to the art in recent time to address ways of creating some incredibly complex things like a person playing an instrument with moving parts.  In addition to these creations, some major advancements have occurred in the way that people document and outline the way things are created; allowing other paper folders to recreate things much more easily.  It's truly an amazing thing to see what some of these masters have managed to create with simple paper - one of the most familiar things to all of us, but not one that we imagine turning into a person or animal with precise folds.

Looking For A Playhouse?Wooden is the way to Go!

It is a dream come true for children to have their very own playhouse. A miniature version of the real thing, children can have their very own special place where they are able to use their imaginations to the fullest. An adventure awaits when a child gets a playhouse. It is the perfect place for the minds of little ones to come alive!

Playhouses are available constructed of plastic or wood. They are sold in several different sizes, holding between 4 and 10 children at a time. Playhouses come in simple designs and luxurious designs and can even be custom built to your specifications.

When choosing a playhouse wooden built playhouses are the best choice. A wooden built playhouse is more durable than plastic, and can offer a much longer life span than plastic. They are also designed to handle more types of weather, and even offer warmth in the winter and coolness during those hot summer months. In addition a wooden playhouse is made to handle the wear and tear of everyday use.

Playhouses can be put atop a tree for a fun tree house, or be placed on the ground. A nice playhouse can add character to any home. Additions such as slides can be added, and furniture is sold to create the perfect place for the little ones to hang.

These playhouses will cost a bit more than a plastic playhouse but offer options affordable for most. With all of the benefits of wooden built playhouses they are worth the extra few dollars you will spend. The cost will depend on several factors, such as design and size, but a quality wooden playhouse can start around $500 and go up well into the thousands of dollars.

A playhouse is a wonderful “toy” for children of any age. Choosing the perfect one for your little one is just the start!

How to Create Your Own Party Invitations

It's amazing how many free printable party invitations are available online these days. It used to be that you'd have to buy whatever invitations the local stationary or drug store had on hand, or, if the occasion was more formal, you had to go to an expensive printer and get custom invitations. But now there's a whole world of alternatives when you're throwing a party, because printable party invitations have changed the way invitations are made.

If you have a computer and a printer, you can now make your own party invitations at home. It helps if you have a paper cutter, too, but you can work around that if you don't have one by having your invitations cut at a local printer or copy shop. You can also cut them with a ruler and a craft knife, but that can be a bit grueling if you have a lot to cut.

The really great thing about downloading free printable birthday party invitations is the diversity of choices. There are not only different designers who create diverse styles, but there are also an unbelievable number of niche types. This means that whether you're throwing a 50th anniversary party for yourself or your parents, a Quinceanera (a traditional formal birthday party thrown for 15th-year-old Latin American girls), a summer BBQ and luau pool blow-out or a Halloween party, there are invitation designs available. You just have to make sure that the quality of the art is sufficient, so you end up with good results. To ensure this, an image should be at least 100 dpi (dots or pixels per inch), and 200 or 300 dpi are even better.

Before you run all the invitations, you'll want to print a test to make sure the artwork looks clear in its final form. Run this test on the card stock you plan to use for the invitation, not just on regular bond printer paper. That will give you the most accurate picture of what you'll end up with. If the image looks at all "pixelated" (either blurry or choppy), don't use that particular piece of art. There are so many free printable invitations on the Web, you can always just go out and look for another!

Sewing Thread

Superior Threads is your one stop shop for all things thread. They have a large selection of products including sewing thread, needles, patterns, kits, prewound bobbins, silk ribbon, bobbin savers, dissolve, machingers, snippers, steamers, stitch outs, thread storage, and more.

Superior Threads is the only company that stands behind every spool of thread they offer. They guarantee that their sewing thread will work or they will buy it back from you! They have these amazing color charts that are made with the actual thread they sell to help ensure you are getting the exact colors needed. And if you don’t see a particular item that you want on their website, they will make every effort to get that item for you, or, they will help you find it elsewhere. How many companies are willing to do that for their customers?

Superior Threads has an amazing self help section on their website. It’s an education index with over 100 pages of helpful tips, hints, how-to’s, and more. They have a reference guide, bobbin information, thread information, sewing machine information, and other helpful instructions. They even have a library of educational videos that provide step-by-step instructions for using different types of thread. They have a new video posted every couple of weeks so it is a great way to stay on top of the latest in the thread and sewing world.

Superior Threads even has amazing seminars which teach you everything you need to know about thread. They also have a workshop called the “Open Thread Bar.” This workshop teaches quilters the many methods and ways for using specialty threads.

Superior Threads has excellent customer service. You can contact them with any questions or problems you may be experiencing and they will do whatever it takes to help you out. They are truly sewing thread experts!

Online digital scrapbooking

Scrapbooking has been a popular hobby for decades. With the advent of new software for digital scrapbooking, the age-old activity is no longer limited to traditional scrapbook kits such as  paper, scissors and pen. It is also no longer restricted to physical location – people create scrapbooks on the way to work, in the garden, in school, and are capable of producing high quality scrapbooks in a fraction of the time. From the camera to the computer, creating a digital scrapbook is so fun and easy people regard digital scrapbooking as a way of life.

Scrapbooking is no longer just about putting a few photos together in a book. It's become an incredibly exciting and rewarding art form. Users can include images, videos, text, music and most importantly, share it online with friends and family across continents. Some have changed the name from ‘scrapbook’ to ‘scrapblog’ because they use it more like a blog with frequent updates and more text and pictures.

The following digital scrapbooking software enables you to create the most amazing scrapbook content that you can imagine from your photos, videos and music.

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To display Amazon results, you must first enter a keyword or keyword phrase. Please consult the user manual.

To display Amazon results, you must first enter a keyword or keyword phrase. Please consult the user manual.

To display Amazon results, you must first enter a keyword or keyword phrase. Please consult the user manual.

The availability of thousands of digital scrapbooking materials can easily spark the creativity of users and turn their memories into beautiful displays they can be proud of. Frequent updates of scrapbooking layouts and embellishments that go with the book theme, and video tutorials  that teach users how to achieve stunning effects keep users engaged and returning for more. Users can take articles from various sources and make their own magazines, create and edit video montages, design photo calendars and then turn them into print, or simply share them online with the option for people to leave comments.

There are virtual communities for users to share their digital scrapbooks, tips and tricks on creating books, new ideas for books, upload their own designs for others to use, and interact in social forums the scrapbooks people published.

So whether you are getting caught up with baby photos, getting ready for your child’s graduation or putting wedding photos together, there’s a reason why scrapbook should work for you too.

Things To Look Out For When Creating Your Own Perfume

If you are sick and tired of buying perfumes and cologne from the retail store, you may want to try one of those do it yourself fragrance.  But before you start jumping into getting yourself some essential oils to create that perfect perfume for yourself, you may want to take a look at the following few pointers that may save you a lot of troubles when handling essential oils.

Essential oils are powerful and highly concentrated; they can be toxic when used incorrectly.  Essential oils may smell nice and tasty, however never take essential oils orally and avoid all contacts with the eyes and mouth.  Always wear a goggle when working with essential oils and be sure to use a small amount base oil to dilute the essential oil and absorb this with a soft cloth before rinsing your eyes under water for at least fifteen minutes if you accidentally got essential oils into your eyes or mouth.

Essential oils are normally distilled from naturally occurring essences in aromatic plants.  When concentrated, majority of them can cause some kind of skin irritation if they are applied to the skin.  If you are thinking of testing the essential oils with your skin chemistry, make sure you dilute the essential oils before application onto the skin.  However when skin irritation do happen in the course of your experiment, apply some base cream or base oil, such as almond, to the affected area and place a cold, wet cloth on the affected area until the redness or itchiness disappears.

Never misjudge the potency of the essential oils that you are handling and always seek medical help when a large amount of essential oils accidentally come into contact with you.  If you are looking for perfume making guides, be sure to search the webs and you will definitely find some outstanding perfume and cologne guides that will provide you will some wonderful tips on perfume making.

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