Tried It: Strawberry Pompom!

I had to try. Pom poms are the perfect combination of uselessness and frivolity that I look for in a craft (time-waster). Plus, pom poms evoke the sweetness of sixth grade when my friends and I twirled yarn on forks and glued on google eyes to make pom pom creatures that lived inside our desks.

strawberry pom pom by

I followed the instructions at the Mr. Printables blog. But make sure to review the Mr. P instructions for making flower pom poms first–they include the basic steps you’ll need.

pom poms by

I also made some regular pom poms.

pom poms by

Then I gave them to my favorite middle schoolers to live inside their desks.

pom poms by



Make: Scandinavian Cross-stitch Hama Bead Coasters


Call ‘em what you like: Hama, Perler, fuse, melty. These little plastic beads are weird, but I dig them. I like how traditional cross-stitch patterns translate perfectly to melty-bead peg boards.

I sketched a vaguely Scandinavian pattern on graph paper, and then tried it out with different color schemes of melty beads. The plastic squares turned out to be a good size for coasters, and they have a satisfying chunky density to them.


Pinterest Round-up: Paper Chandeliers

Paper chandeliers (and some pom-pom varieties) are popping up on all my favorite Pinterest bulletin boards. They are so celebratory, so cheerful. I can imagine the paper creations draped decadently all over my apartment–or the big-windowed, high-ceilinged library where I work. The chandeliers are pajaki, literally “spiders of straw,” a holiday folk art that originated from the Lowicz region of Poland.

I found a DIY from A Beautiful Mess. The instructions call for wooden straws, which seem hard to find, but apparently Swedish straws will do–you can purchase them at Imagine Childhood.

The super-fun pom pom chandelier comes from Small for Big, which offers complete DIY instructions.

Or you can buy one! They ain’t cheap but would make a happy purchase, I’m sure. I found some on Ebay for $150 or at the Polish Art Center for $125.

Renew: Before and After Card File Drawers

I’m not patient enough to take a Before Photo. Once I have a project-induced adrenaline surge, I can barely pause to snap a decent photo or two. So here’s my best:


You get the idea. Vintage black card file drawers. Actually, I think they were originally army green, and I painted them black a while ago when my husband and I were going through a “drag any old discarded file cabinet off the sidewalk” phase. Does everyone go through this phase? Is it developmental? It’s definitely a pre-kids condition. Anyway, I was inspired by this Land of Nod item to dig the old thing out of the closet and give it some new paint.


After spraying the file drawers with enamel white paint (and then laying down for a while due to resulting asphyxiation), I got to work on the fun part. I used tiny bottles of model paint to color the drawer fronts.

The After Photos:

I don’t know if you can tell but there are actually two different file boxes with two file drawers each. The top box is made of wood, the bottom of metal. They sit on top of each other nicely though, and their differences add to a general funkiness, I think. I haven’t quite figured out where to put the drawers–they are 17″ deep!


Creative Kid: Miniature Still Life

still life fruit

Still Life with Fruit. Or Fruit Series #1.  Or Strawberry on Blue. I’m not sure how best to describe these mini masterpieces. These petite paintings were a product of a craftathon weekend with our cousins. Our fruity theme inspired a modeling-clay cornucopia of summer produce as well (and one slice of pizza, above).

Except one cousin, a true artiste, who went his own way. May I present to you: Man with Scythe.


I bought the 2 x 2″ canvases at my local craft store, but you can get them online here at Blick Art. The canvas comes prepped for acrylic paint (or oil paint if you have a lot of chutzpah/hubris). You can also purchase little easels for display–very sweet.

tiny easel and canvas