Autumn Craft: DIY Leaf Relief Painting

DIY leaf relief painting

This month’s Craft Challenge theme is autumn. My goal is always to create something different and exciting for each of these challenges and this month is no different. I struggled a bit with this one because I’m not quite in the mood for fall yet. It’s sunny and 90 degrees in my area and leaves are still green. I haven’t quite hit the sweaters, boots and pumpkin latte craze yet.

To get there, I did a brainstorming session with a friend (thank you, Aarika). We kept coming back to leaves. Do you remember doing leaf coloring in 2nd grade? You put a leaf under a piece of paper and color over it with a crayon to bring out the texture and outlines? We’re going to make the adult version of that today.

It’s a really fun project, and I really enjoyed making it. I’m going to paint several more this week and frame them for some festive decor. Follow the tutorial below to make some of your own!

 

leaf relief painting materials

Materials needed for leaf relief paintings

  • foil
  • leaves
  • sponge brush
  • acrylic paint
  • paper towns
  • thick paper
  • craft bond / adhesive
  • light grit sandpaper or steel wool

Supply notes:
Go outside and find some leaves, flowers or other plants.

Make sure the paper you choose is pretty thick. I used paper from a mixed media notebook. You can also use watercolor paper, bristol board or some other variation.

Choose steel wool over sandpaper if you can.

 

painting workspace

Step 1: set up your workspace

Usually, this isn’t part of my tutorial because your workspace is a given. However, this one can get a little sticky (pun intended).

Make sure you lay down newspaper or paper towels all over your work area if you’re working indoors. Craft bond is pretty sticky and it takes some time to get it out of clothes, off your skin and table.

Crafter’s tip: If you’re working over wood like I am, and happen to get the adhesive on your table, dab some vegetable oil on a towel and wipe it up. The oil releases the bond on the wood. Make sure you use cleaning products to wipe up the oil when you’re finished!

 

texture for painting

Step 2: adhere paper towels to the paper

Spray the adhesive on your thick paper and cover it will a paper towel.

I used paper towels with swirl designs because I wanted extra texture for the  background. You don’t have to use a bold texture if you don’t want to.

 

leaf base

Step 3: adhere the leaves

Spray the adhesive again and press the leaves into place.

 

foil cover nature art

Step 4: adhere the foil

Spray the adhesive again and press a sheet of foil overtop of the leaves.

 

leaf relief with foil

Step 5: bring out the natural texture

Ball up a paper towel and press lightly over the veins and outlines of the leaves and their stems to bring out the texture. Be careful not to rip the foil.

 

brush painting technique

Step 6: paint the foil

Using your sponge brush, dab the paint onto the foil like in the image above. You want to lift the brush and set it back down to ensure the paint gets into all of those little crevices.

Then, pull your brush from one end to the other in a typical painting motion. Get rid of the texture the sponge brush created by dabbing on the paint.

Let it dry.

I decided, half way through painting, that I wanted to go with the red paint, so I painted over it a second time with that color only.

I suggest painting on a second layer of paint either way.

Let it dry.

leaf veins through acrylic paint

Step 7: sand down the paint

Very lightly sand down the paint on and around the leaves so that the veins and foil shows through. Be careful not to rip the foil.

This is going to be a very slow process, but it is so worth it in the end.

 

DIY leaf relief painting

When you’re finished, you’ll have something that looks like the above. I love the way the foil makes all of the lines pop!

Next time I am going to try paper towels with less texture and black or dark blue paint. I really enjoy the red but a higher contrasting color will make the leaves stand out so much more.

The Craft Challenge

This project is part of the Craft Challenge.

Be sure to check out Emily’s craft over at A Pop of Red! She will have her tutorial posted later today.

 

DIY Fall Wreath Decor

DIY fall wreath

I told myself that I wasn’t going to make any fall-related crafts until September, but I couldn’t help myself. I saw the autumn leaf decor at Pat Catan’s today and wanted to use it to make a Fall wreath.  I love the colors!

It took about an hour to make and the materials cost about $12. Not too bad if you ask me!fall wreath materials

Things You Will Need

Water
Ribbon
Burlap
Newspaper
Paint brush
Acrylic paint
Wreath base
Wooden letters
Hot-melt glue
Hot-melt glue gun

painted wooden letters for fall

Step 1

Paint your letters and let them dry.

autumn leavesfor fall wreath

Step 2

In the meantime you can wrap your autumn leaves around your wreath base and glue them into place.

burlap wreath decoration

Step 3

Cut a piece of burlap long enough to stretch across your wreath and wrap about the back.

Glue it tightly into place.

wooden letter decor on wreath

Step 4

Glue your letters across the burlap so they stretch across the length of the wreath.

DIY fall wreath

Tie on your ribbon and hang up your new fall wreath!

I’d love to know what you think! Leave me some feedback in the comments 🙂

Happy crafting!

DIY Autumn-Inspired Mason Jar Vase

autumn-inspired mason jar vase

Since it is Autumn and the leaves are finally changing, I thought I would work on some fall-inspired crafts. For the first one, I decided to replace my fall/spring-inspired vases from last year with these lovely mason jars. I wanted something decorative for fall, but didn’t want to go the Halloween route. Just something subtle. Creamy brown colors, burlap and mason jars seems like the way to go.

autumn flower vase materials

Things You Will Need
Burlap
Ribbon
Mason Jars
Acrylic paint
Burlap flower
Sponge brush

*You will also need double-sided tape or some hot glue to adhere the burlap, ribbon, and flower.

painted mason jar craft

mason jar vase

Step 1
Pour some paint into the bottom of one of the mason jars. Swirl it around until the entire jar is covered with paint.

Repeat this step with the other two jars.

Fall burlap vasesStep 2
Wrap some burlap around each vase.

ribbon burlap jar

Step 3
Wrap some ribbon around each vase in the middle of the burlap.

burlap flower decoration

Step 4
Adhere your decorative element to the larger mason jar.

autumn-inspired mason jar vase

Pop in your flowers for the finishing touches. you should have something like the above photo which is a great decorative element for the autumn season! I love them!

Let me know what you think!

DIY Fall Leaf Bookmark

diy leaf bookmark

 

I’ve made DIY bookmarks before, and I like them, but the problem was that they extend the pages of the book. I like to carry my books with me, so when I used those bookmarks and put the book it my purse, it would always fall off the pages. So, I decided to make another version. This one is obviously fall inspired. I considered using scrapbook paper, but then decided to use leaves since there are so many of them on the ground outside this time of year. Let me know what you think!

 

diy leaf bookmarkThings You Will Need:
Leaves
Scissors
Mod Podge
Paint swatch
Paint Brush(es)
* Hot melt glue is optional but recommended. If you are impatient, like I am, it makes the process go a bit faster.

 

diy leaf bookmarkStep 1:
Cut the paint swatch in half and round the edges.

 

diy leaf bookmarkStep 2:
Glue the first leaf to the paint swatch. Press down and hold for a few seconds to make sure it sticks.

 

diy leaf bookmarkStep 3:
Repeat step 2 until the whole paint swatch is covered.

 

diy leaf bookmarkStep 4:
Add a thin layer of Mod Podge over the leaves. This will act as a sealant and will leave a gloss cover when it dries.

 

diy leaf bookmark

 

There you go. A quick and easy festive bookmark. You most likely won’t lose this one in your purse either!

Happy crafting!

 

 

 

 

DIY Fall-Inspired Wreath

DIY Fall-Inspired Wreath

I felt festive today, so I made a fall-inspired wreath. It doesn’t take long to make (maybe half an hour) and it is nice home decor. The pinecones are cinnamon scented too, so it makes my house smell amazing 🙂 I don’t know how much the average seasonal wreath would typically cost, but I made this one with under $20. Probably about $16 all together.

DIY Fall-Inspired WreathThings You Will Need:
Wreath*
Scissors
Ribbon
Hot-melt glue
Fall floral plant
Felt (optional)
Cinnamon-scented pinecones

*I’ve seen people use a pool noodle in place of the styrofoam circle. You can give that a shot. I’ve never tried it though, so I’m not going to tell you it will work. If you try it, let me know how it goes.

You can find the scented pinecones and floral plant at your local craft store. Around this time of year they should be stocked up. You will smell them as soon as you walk in the door.

DIY Fall-Inspired WreathStep 1:
Fold the edge of the ribbon over and glue it to the styrofoam wreath.

DIY Fall-Inspired WreathStep 2:
Begin to wrap the ribbon around the form. I bought 10 ft. (3 m.) worth of ribbon and just barely had enough. Make sure you are wrapping the ribbon directly over top of where the last piece of ribbon ended.

DIY Fall-Inspired WreathStep 3:
If you choose to use felt, here is where you want to wrap a small piece of it around your wreath. Make sure the beginning and the end of the felt are meeting at the back of the wreath. You don’t want people to see that part.

hot-melt fall pinecones to wreathStep 4:
Here’s the fun part. Begin to glue your fall-scented pinecones to the wreath. Find a good layout and get to work 🙂

decorative fall wreathThis is the layout I used for the decoration. It works, but it a bit heavy. I may have gone overboard…

DIY Fall-Inspired Wreath

This wreath actually turned out better than I thought it would. So, I’m not complaining.

I hope you like it! Happy crafting!

DIY Cinnamon Candle Decor

DIY Cinnamon Candle Fall Decor

 

Fall is here! Kind of. Either way, I am in the mood for chai tea, pumpkin pie, and apple cinnamon candles. If you know me, you know that I typically have at least one candle burning. So, I thought I would combine my love of candles and the urge to dive head first into fall and create some DIY cinnamon candle decor. Supposedly, when the candle glass around the candle heats up, the smell of cinnamon permeates the room. I’ve seen this done before, and I’ve wanted to try it for a long time. Today seemed like a good day 🙂 I’ve seen this done before, and I’ve wanted to try it for a long time.

 

DIY Cinnamon Candle Fall DecorThings You Will Need:
Vanilla-scented candle
Hot-melt glue
Cinnamon
String

 

DIY Cinnamon Candle Fall DecorStep 1:
Run a line of hot-melt glue to your cinnamon stick.

 

DIY Cinnamon Candle Fall DecorStep 2:
Glue the cinnamon to the candle. I left the label exposed so that people can see which candle I used.

 

DIY Cinnamon Candle Fall DecorStep 3:
You would think that this step is optional, but when you burn the candle, it will heat up the glue on the cinnamon sticks and they will fall off. So, get some string and tie it around the candle.

 

DIY Cinnamon Candle Fall Decor

 

There you have it, a vanilla cinnamon candle to spice up your fall decor! Lovely!

 

 

 

 

DIY Fall-Inspired Votive Holder

diy candle holderI know its February and that I should be doing winter or valentines day crafts, but I am really longing for fall right now. I miss semi-warm, sunny and breezy days. I really want to see changing leaves, candles in people’s windows, and pumpkin pie. No idea what is going on in my head right now. Maybe all of the snow is getting to me… Anyway, all of this inspired me to make this fall-inspired votive holder. It is super easy and pretty cute 🙂

votive holder materialsThings You Will Need:
Paper stamps
Votive holder
Mod Podge
Paint brush
Tissue paper

tissue paper leavesStep 1:

Stamp out all of the tissue paper designs you want for your votive holder. I just cut out a few because I didn’t want to go overboard, but your design might look much better in excess. You decide.

leaves and mod podge

Step 2:

Get a small amount of Mod Podge on your paint brush and make a tiny circle on the glass where you want you tissue paper design to go. Place your paper design on top of the glue and lightly put another layer over the top. Remember how fragile the tissue paper is. If you add too much glue it will most likely fall apart.

Note: Wherever the glue is applied the glass will look frosted. In the picture above there is glue outside of the area where the leaves are. I cleaned this up with a dry paper towl. Do it quickly though; the glue dries fast.

Let it dry.

diy candle holder

Voila! A cute, fall-inspired votive holder. Can you tell that the candle is flameless?

Happy crafting 😀