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Ruckus in the Radiant + Rare Rainforest

Happy forever fall! October days in Colorado have been most beautiful, filled with sweet sunshine and warm weather! Our studio just wrapped up our first six weeks of a fresh + new school year and we’re excited to announce SESSION II STARTS THIS WEEK! We have just a few spaces in our art workshops offered on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, or Thursdays! Jump in and join us if you’re in the Roaring Fork Valley!

We’d love for you to a peek at the most recent project dreamed up + designed + created by creative children in our workshop ~ Ruckus in the Radiant + Rare Rainforest! You might just be inspired to make your own! Tag your creations @handmakery on Instagram!

SUPPLIES FOR ~ RUCKS IN THE RADIANT + RARE RAINFOREST:

  • black & white imagery for inspiration
  • heavy-weight white paper
  • India ink
  • paintbrushes
  • scissors
  • pencil & eraser
  • tempera paint
  • permanent marker
  • cardboard
  • white school glue
  • pattern & solid papers
  • foam core
  • posterboard
  • egg carton
  • hot glue
  • embellishments: pom poms, buttons, glitter sticky foam, stickers
  • drill
  • twine

A SIMPLE PROCESS FOR ~ RUCKS IN THE RADIANT + RARE RAINFOREST:

ONE Read The Great Kapok Tree: A Tale of the Amazon Rain Forest as a fantastic introduction to rainforests. Get inspired using simple black & white imagery for discovery, inspiration, and reference. Imagery may include rainforest plants, flowers, leaves, and trees. Use a thin brush and black India ink to “draw” on a large scale, filling a large paper with a variety of observed + organic habitat. Illustrations should remain separate so they can eventually be cut apart. Dry.

TWO Using tempera cake paints in neons and fluorescents to bring color into the rainforest habitat. This semi-transparent paint will allow the black lines to still shine through. Dry. Cut plantlife apart, leaving the exterior black line.

ART WORKSHOPS FOR KIDS!

ENROLLING: SESSION II ~ FALL

WORKSHOPS + CLASSES + CAMPS + EVENTS

Early online enrollment at HANDMAKERY is highly encouraged as seating is limited!  Start making + creating + connecting in a colorful community focused on a creative + collaborative childhood!

STAY CONNECTED @handmakery ON INSTAGRAM!

THREE Use pencil to lightly sketch rainforest creatures. Start with simple shapes like circles and ovals, eventually moving to smaller shapes and detail. Use simple black & white imagery for animal inspiration. Move to a permanent black marker to outline, detail, texture, and to bold each creature. Cut out each animal with scissors keeping the exterior black line. We did most of the cutting so young artists would have more time drawing and painting.

Each artist selected their own creature combinations to incorporate into their rainforest. Creatures included poison dart frogs, snakes, exotic birds, sloths, leopards, monkeys, and more! It was exciting to see the different combinations of animals each artist selected to personalize their piece.

FOUR Explore lightweight cardboard and white glue construction for additional plantlife popouts and to add additional dimension. Paint cardboard pieces using solid body tempera paints in neons and accent with tempera paint pens.

Detail dry painted cardboard pieces with glitter sticky foam or smaller mixed-media components such as pom poms, circle stickers, buttons, oil pastels, washi tapes, patterned papers, and more.

FIVE Layout the cutout “creative collection” of rainforest plants, black & white creatures, and dimensional habitat on a horizontal, pre-painted, black cardboard, backed with a smaller piece of foam core for strength and stiffness. Arrange pieces considering foreground, middle-ground, and background. Pieces can flow off the black cardboard to allow more space and to add dimension.

A beautiful rainforest flower painted in paint pen to pop out.

A birds-eye-view of rainforest animals accented with eye catching patterns. Creatures remained in a black + white color scheme for a brilliant + bold + contrasting statement.

SIX Use three to five, precut egg carton pieces to pop out selected pieces. Use white glue to attach a low profile egg carton piece to add height and a bit of pop.

SEVEN Arrange finished pieces on the pre-painted black cardboard, again, that has been backed with foam core for added durability, flatness, and strength. Use a light amount of white school glue to tack down pieces so they’re not fully glued down, so pieces still have a flex & flow. Use a neon poster board to create a vibrant frame to finish off and showcase. Drill holes in the top two corners and add a piece of twine to display.

A peek at a few pretty pieces in progress as artists were planning and popping with a unique perspective, point of view, and of course a powerful punch, all part of the process and on point. Now say this three times!!!

Having a project with “several separate pieces” allowed artists to move around pieces to the puzzle, to build, and to layer their one-of-a-kind ~ Ruckus in the Radiant + Rare Rainforest so it was unique to each artist. Keeping all animals black & white created a wonderful contrast to the colorful habitat.

Every artist walked away with a one-of-a-kind creation with a collection of creatures they were proud of creating!

A little hand-stamped + black & white saying we printed for each artist to frame using materials of their choice. Little wooden clothespins were used to clip onto the twine of their projects. We discussed how this piece was truly an artist statement to ~ RISE + RALLY + RESECT + RADIATE YOUR HEARTS for the RUCKUS in the RADIANT + RARE RAINFOREST to remind humans to protect and preserve this special land!

The week wrapped up with our traditional recognition ceremony + mini art show as makers took home ~ a most marvelous mini-masterpiece on Main Street in the majestic mountains!

Tag us @handmakery with your creations on Instagram!  Follow our blog for more inspiring process-based art projects!  As always, thank you for following our artful adventure on Main Street in the heART of the Carbondale Creative District!  Send us a note anytime!  We’d love to hear what you’re thinking, dreaming, and envisioning!  Much love and happiness creating in this creative + colorful world filled with collaboration + connection + community + arts & crafting!  Ami

DIY Carnival Circus in Colorful Chaos

Happy Back to School! Hope you’ve had a wonderful time slowing down, celebrating, and soaking up summertime under the sun and stars!

Our studio artists recently showcased ~ A CARNIVAL CIRCUS IN COLORFUL CHAOS! This was our final + full-week workshop of the splendid summer! It was F-U-N and completely filled with construction, creativity, children, color, creatures, cheer, childhood and of course, a teeny-tiny bit of chaos! Take a peek at this delightful process combining circus + carnival + celebration + childhood + construction + collaboration + community + color! We were inspired by Up Warsaw’s beautiful + handmade furniture and wooden circus tents @upwarsaw on Instagram! Be sure to tag @handmakery on Instagram if you give this process-art project a GO! Take a peek below!

ART WORKSHOPS FOR KIDS!

SIMPLY ENROLL:   

WORKSHOPS + CLASSES + CAMPS + EVENTS

Early online enrollment is highly encouraged as seating is limited!  Start a new school year making + creating + connecting in a colorful community focused on a creative + collaborative childhood!

STAY CONNECTED ON INSTAGRAM @handmakery!

SUPPLIES FOR ~ CARNIVAL CIRCUS IN COLORFUL CHAOS:

  • Box with lid
  • Dowels
  • Thin cardboard
  • Cardboard circle pre-cut
  • Tape – masking + duct tape
  • Scissors
  • Newspaper
  • Paper-mâché mixture + bowl
  • Paint (tempera and acrylic) + pallet + brush
  • Clay
  • Glues – white glue, cool temp glue gun + glue and hot glue gun + glue {adult use}
  • Paper straws
  • Pipe cleaners
  • String + yarn + wire
  • Wood parts and pieces {assortment}
  • Wooden peg dolls
  • Poster board
  • Sparkle foam
  • Fabric
  • Paper and markers for signs + flags + garland
  • Embellishments- sticker stars, pom poms, and more!

A SIMPLE PROCESS FOR ~ CARNIVAL CIRCUS IN COLORFUL CHAOS:

BUILD + CONSTRUCT

ONE Construct in pairs using 4 – 12″ dowels, masking tape, duct tape, and a 12 x 12″ heavy-weight box with a separate lid, to create an initial structure for the circus tent. All four tent poles should angle towards the center, to connect together at the center point of the tent.

TWO Use light-weight cardboard, ex. cereal boxes, to draw, cut, and create the curtain elements on the upper front and front sides of the tent. The top curtain can be sketched scalloped and cut. Tape all three cardboard pieces onto the box so they’re secure and frame the stage.

THREE Coat the above structure with newspaper and paper-mâché mixture. Dry overnight.

FOUR Use the box lid as the circus stage. Place the dry circus tent onto the stage. Line up the back of stage and box lid so they’re flush. Tape in place using duct tape strips. Add a round cardboard cutout on top and center on the stage. Mark where the circle overlaps the box sides with a pencil. Cut this overlap so the stage sides are squared off and the front only rounds.

FIVE Paper-mâché connection points so the tent and stage become strong and one unit. Paper-mâché all four sides of the upper tent so the dowels are enclosed. Dry overnight.

PAINT + EMBELLISH

SIX Paint the entire dry tent and stage unit white using acrylic paint to get a solid covering on top of the newspaper. Dry overnight. Use a ruler to draw pencil lines from the center tip of the tent down to each curtain scallop. This will create the red and white divisions for the tent stripes. Mark the red stripes with a light “x” so children know which sections to paint red and which sections to keep white. Use red acrylic paint with a small brush for tent stripes. Encourage young artists to take their time and travel slow to get crisp + clean lines.

SEVEN Move into dreaming up, sketching, and constructing both carnival and circus creatures using clay. We used an airdry clay to create 3D figures. Dry figures before painting using acrylic paint. Children painted their animals solid before moving into smaller details.

EIGHT Once your circus tent is fully painted and dry, move into stage construction. We precut silver sparkle foam for the stage base and hot glued this piece on top of the spark-tacular stage. Cut a piece of black poster board to bend and set into the stage background. Tape in place. Sticker stars can be added to the black poster board for sparkle + shine + a little stage magic! Children used cool temp glue guns to create their stage structures using patterned paper straws, painted wood pieces, yarn, string, fabric, and more! Precut strips of striped fabric were attached by artists using cool glue around the stage for added color, texture, and stage-like appeal!

NINE Painted people (aka wooden peg dolls) and creatures were added to the stage to complete the ~ CARNIVAL CIRCUS IN COLORFUL CHAOS! Artist amazed and awed as they created tightropes, trapezes, lyras, acrobats, magicians, imaginary animals, and more! These ringmasters also made the most detailed signs to sell tickets, announce the event schedules, direct guests to tasty cotton candy, popcorn, and candy stands! The imagination and creativity of these artists… truly over-the-top bright + beaming + brilliant!

TEN We added face paint, carnival hats, and popcorn to enhance the full-circus experience for our community art show celebration!

How fun are these traditional popcorn boxes!?!

JOIN US AT HANDMAKERY!

Celebrate childhood + creativity + color + community by creating and collaborating!

My artful friend, Bar Rucci, created an incredible DIY ~ Circus Tents Made By Kids (photo above) on her lovely ~ Art Bar Blog and over on Handmade Charlotte for another fantastic way to bring a circus experience into any creative environment! You’ll definitely want to take a peek at this project and ALL her gorgeous goodness by following her @artbarblog on Instagram or visiting her on Art Bar Blog!

Tag us @handmakery with your creations on Instagram!  Follow our blog for more inspiring process-based art projects!  As always, thank you for following our artful adventure on Main Street in the heART of the Carbondale Creative District!  Send us a note anytime!  We’d love to hear what you’re thinking, dreaming, and envisioning!  Much love and happiness creating in this creative + colorful world, filled with collaboration + connection + community + arts & crafting!  Happy School Year! Ami

Sculptural Springtime Sloths

Hello there! Excited to give you a little springtime inspiration in your day! Our artists recently showcased their ~ SCULPTURAL SPRINGTIME SLOTHS in a sling, sporting stylish sandals + sunhats + sunglasses + scarves, while sipping & sun-basking in the sunshine in our early spring + six-week + school-year art workshops for ages 5 & up! We have a feeling these creatures will “slowly” steal your heart! Sharing a list of sweet-n-simple, go-to-supplies, to get your very own sloth started using several upcycled material you might already have on hand! Be sure to tag @handmakery on Instagram if you give this project a GO! Take a peek below!

SUPPLIES FOR ~ SCULPTURAL SPRINGTIME SLOTHS:

  • Newspaper {upcycled}
  • Paper bags {upcycled}
  • Tape- masking + duct tape
  • Scissors
  • Paper-mâché mixture + bowl
  • Paint + pallet + brush
  • Driftwood
  • Fabric- fleece
  • Fishing line
  • Embellishments for sandals, hats & sunglasses

A SIMPLE PROCESS FOR ~ SCULPTURAL SPRINGTIME SLOTHS:

BUILD + CONSTRUCT:

PAPER MÂCHÉ:

PAINT:

ASSEMBLE A SIMPLE SLING:

EMBELLISH: Sunhats + Sandals + Sunglasses + Scarves + Sips

A STUPENDUS + SUSPENDED + SLOTHFUL SHOWCASE:

Did you know sloths are the most trending animal of the year? Would you believe the sloth has replaced the unicorn!?! Indeed, it’s true! Read about their debut as “the most trending creature” of this year. Would you also believe a baby sloth was just born, right here in Colorado!?! If you’re looking for some amazing + simple sloth facts for kids, to go along with this DIY, take a look. Artists loved learning all about these cozy and trending creatures! We even hosted a sloth birthday party right in our very own sweet studio!

A sweet + sisterly + sloth-selfie sent in by one of our amazing HANDMAKERY families! Thank you for tagging #handmakery on Instagram with your creations!

SUN BASK, SIP, SIT BACK & RELAX INTO SUMMER:

TAKE A SPLASH & JOIN US THIS SUMMER:

1. JUMP IN AS SUMMER ART CAMPS ARE QUICKLY FILLING!

SIMPLY ENROLL:   WORKSHOPS + CLASSES + SUMMER CAMPS

Early online enrollment is highly encouraged as seating is limited!  Jump into summer making + creating + connecting in a colorful community focused on a creative + collaborative childhood, in the heART of the Carbondale Creative District on magnificent Main Street!

2. FAMILY BLOCK PARTY ~ FIRST FRIDAY MAY!

Free Art Making In Our Outdoor Art Studio First Friday ~ May 3rd, FAMILY BLOCK PARTY, 4 - 8 PM!

You don’t want to miss this event! If you’re local to the Roaring Fork Valley, be sure to join us for our 7th year hosting a ~ FREE art-making booth for ALL AGES! We’ll be making & creating in our outdoor art studio which will be located in downtown Carbondale |Colorado, at the heART of the Carbondale Creative District! Join us for the much-anticipated + annual + artful ~ FAMILY BLOCK PARTY!

3. LET’S CONNECT ON INSTAGRAM!

JOIN US ON INSTAGRAM!
@handmakery

Tag us @handmakery with your creations on Instagram!  Follow our blog for more inspiring process-based art projects!  As always, thank you for following our artful adventure!  Send us a note anytime!  We’d love to hear what you’re thinking, dreaming, and envisioning!  Much love and happiness creating in this creative + colorful world filled with collaboration + connection + community + arts & crafting!  Happy Spring! xo Ami

Spring + Summer Art Workshops

HANDMAKERY WORKSHOP BROCHURE SPRING + SUMMER 2019!
Enroll Today!
FREE Art Making In Our Outdoor Art Studio First Friday ~ May 3 FAMILY BLOCK PARTY 4-8 PM!
Join Us On Instagram @handmakery!

You + Me + a Teepee Alpaca My Bags

HAPPY NEW YEAR!  We’re onto 2019, hip hip hurray!  Excited to share with you our latest workshop ~ You + Me + a Teepee ~ Alpaca My Bags ~ DIY Artful Adventure a project dreamed up in the studio and created with children, ages 5 – 13, over an 8-week session!  The best part of this project you ask?  It’s multi-layered, dimensional, full of exploration + experience, completely artful + action-packed, personalized, and even A-G-L-O-W to light up a stargazing night!  Take a peek!

NEW ART WORKSHOPS BEGIN JANUARY 8TH!

JUMP IN AS WORKSHOPS ARE QUICKLY FILLING!

SIMPLY ENROLL:   WORKSHOPS + CLASSES + CAMPS

Early online enrollment is highly encouraged as seating is limited!  Start a new year making + creating + connecting in a colorful community focused on a creative + collaborative childhood!

STAY CONNECTED @handmakery ON INSTAGRAM!

A proud + confident artist feeling aglow and over the moon with a stargazing smile!

Mini-exhibits were truly aglow.  It was our first show with gallery mood lighting, definitely the best ambiance of the year!  Artists were anxious and animated to show off their colorful creations to family and friends.

On a little side note:  Be sure to find us all around the Roaring Fork Valley in The Scout Guide Aspen, Volume 6!  A beautiful + NEW publication just launched!  THANK YOU for featuring HANDMAKERY in ~ Ones To Watch Aspen, via Amy Groom & Erin Jones | Owners/Editors of The Scout Guide Aspen!  Pick up your very own copy of this beautiful guide in our art studio, around the Roaring Fork Valley, or even read online!

SUPPLIES FOR ~ You + Me + a Teepee Alpaca My Bags DIY Artful Adventure:

  • Pencil + eraser
  • Canvas- stretched/framed
  • Watercolor pallet
  • Liquid watercolors + brush + sponge + water container
  • Salt
  • Tempera paint + brush + pallet
  • India ink
  • Glitter + metallic confetti flakes, metallic circles & stars + metallic sticker stars + snowflakes
  • White school glue
  • Gluestick
  • Modge Podge
  • 1″ utility paint brush
  • Black construction paper
  • Scissors
  • Wooden skewers and tiny wooden dowels
  • Masking tape
  • Papier-mâché + white light-weight paper + plastic cloth
  • Tealight candle (battery/non-flame)
  • Heavy-weight watercolor paper
  • Fine-point permanent marker
  • Gel pens- shimmer, metallic, brights
  • Faux alpaca fur
  • Googly eye
  • Peel + stick glitter foam sheets
  • Hot glue (adult use)
  • Embellishments- pom-poms, pom-pom ribbon, felt, tissue circle confetti, and more!

PROCESS FOR ~ You + Me + a Teepee Alpaca My Bags DIY Artful Adventure:

ONE  Begin with a galaxy sky on a stretched framed canvas.  Focus on using cool colors to stain the bright white canvas.  Work light to dark. Experiment with staining, dripping, splattering, movement, and layering techniques using a paintbrush, a watercolor pallet, liquid watercolors, and even build up to adding a tempera paint layer.  Use salt for additional experimentation and effects.  Dry.  Relayer to go darker.  Eventually, even incorporate some black.  Dry.  Splatter using metallic liquid watercolor and dip a tiny wooden stick with white tempera to stamp for distant stars in the galaxy sky.

TWO  Fully dry canvas.  Draw mountains using a pencil in the lower half.  Paint in mountains using India ink.  Dry.  Embellish sky with glitter, metallic confetti flakes, metallic circles and stars, metallic sticker stars, and even tiny snowflakes. Attach using gluestick and/or white school glue.  Use matt Modge Podge to lightly seal embellishments with a 1″ utility brush.

THREE  Draw and cut a small + simple paper silhouette which will become the “you + me” of this piece.  The silhouettes may include people, animals, trees, or even the combination.  Attach silhouette and seal with Modge Podge.

FOUR  Use wooden skewers to form a simple teepee frame with a flat back.  Assemble using masking tape and partners.

A peek at teepee armatures ready for a doorway and then a single layer of papier-mâché.

FIVE  Move onto adding a doorway that is front-facing with a horizontal crossbar and two lower sticks running verticle made out of tiny wooden dowels.  The doorway is a great addition to personalize the teepee but be sure it’s large enough for a battery tealight candle to be placed inside.  Doorways can be triangular, square, or even arched!

SIX  Papier-mâché the teepee armature using light-weight paper similar to copy or butcher paper, so the finished teepee will glow when the tealight candle is inside.

Dry teepee overnight.

A completed teepee just before being embellished.  Add a tealight candle for a lovely nighttime glow.

SEVEN  Sketch out bags for travel on watercolor paper.  Did you get the workshop title?  Alpaca my bags… I’ll pack my bags!  Gear for travel may include suitcases, stuffies, plants, firewood, gifts, coolers, and more!  Once sketched, outline with a fine point permanent marker and color using sparkle gel pens.  Carefully cut out.

EIGHT  The much-loved alpaca is smaller than a llama.  Simply sketch and cut an alpaca from faux alpaca fur.  The alpaca is best drawn from a side-view and embellished with a bag using fabric felt, pom-poms, and any other exciting decor.  The fabric alpaca can be attached to the canvas using white school glue or hot glue.

If you like alpacas, you’ll also love our DIY Llamas in Pajamas!

NINE  Attach the teepee to the canvas using hot glue or Gorilla Glue (adult use).  Dry.  Artists can then embellish their attached teepees using glitter sticky foam pieces, pom-poms, pom-pom ribbon, large tissue paper confetti circles, felt, yarn tassels, and more!  Repeat a design around the three sides of the teepee sculpture to create a little radial symmetry.

An alpaca artist at our mini-exhibit!  Love at “furry” sight!

Oh là là”… the nighttime glow just before the mini-exhibit + recognition ceremony.  All lights were on deck.

Probably one of our favorite exhibits with an amber glow and all-round ambiance into the night.

Galaxy skies aglow…

… a night to celebrate and remember!

THANK YOU to everyone for joining us in the studio for an artful evening to celebrate!

Are you yet following @handmakery on Instagram?

Tag us @handmakery with your creations on Instagram!  Follow our blog for more inspiring process-based art projects!  As always, thank you for following this artful adventure!  Send us a note anytime!  We’d love to hear what you’re thinking and dreaming!  Much love and happiness creating in this creative + colorful world full of collaboration + connection + community + arts & crafting!  Happy New Year!

xo Ami



Candy Cottage Captures

FIRST FRIDAY we hosted our annual + traditional ~ Candy Cottage + Golden Ticket Event!  It was a cozy evening as every seat in the studio SOLD OUT several weeks in advance.  Artists spent two hours in the art studio dreaming up delightful + decorative details using candies and other exciting embellishments downtown in the heART of the Carbondale Creative District.  Earlier in the evening many families visited Santa over at Carbondale Arts for a festive photo and join in The Annual Tree Lighting Celebration on Main!  Take a peek!

Love how this candy cottage has an elegant “squishy stained glass” appeal.

This event was offered as a “drop off” so parents could stroll downtown and dine, while kids could come together in a creative community focused on colorful cottages and candy!

A detailed roof captured in color,  pattern, repetition, and texture, yet oh so tasty!

Shimmery smiles of sugar plums.

Surprise and wonder with a hint of maker magic!

The workshop was buzzing with Santa’s elves hard at work.  Even a few reindeer were making their way around to artfully assist!

Tiny hands making BIG art + accomplishments.

Love how the elements used in this candy cottage compliment one another for a eye-catching contrast.

Lots of thought went into how each artist was going to design and decorate their custom candy cottage!

The entryway of this sculpture was complete with a marshmallow arch and tiny rainbow balls to detail.

A sticky Friday night with “Visions of sugar plums dancing in their heads”…

There were many tasty temptations.

Another delightfully detailed rooftop, could you guess her father’s precise profession?

Many artists focused on spectacular landscapes to surround their clever + crafty creations.

A lovely rainbow pattern to define and detail!

The hunt for the perfect treat to tailor.

The magic of the makers felt a bit like mingling in Santa’s workshop!

A gorgeous straw rooftop made by this mini maker.

The creation of a landscape architect!

Making memories as makers that were m-m-m good!

The delightful details of kids as creators.

All was calm.  All was bright!  We truly had a wonderful night!

This artist received a special recognition for ~ The Most Delightfully Detailed, but it was not an easy decision for the reindeer judges with all the impressive candy cottage creations!

A close up of the cottage selected as ~ The Most Delightfully Detailed.

It was pretty peaceful as parents came to pick up, just as the clock struck eight!

Another mighty fine cottage with a fantastic landscape to compliment!

Discover our recent article ~ DIY CARDBOARD CANDY COTTAGE in the MOUNTAIN PARENT to create your own 2-D gingerbread house with children!

ART WORKSHOPS FOR 2019:

Enrollment for January is currently underway!  Join us in the studio as art workshops are quickly filling!  We’ll be adding more offerings with time!

WORKSHOPS + CLASSES + CAMPS

handmakery  A pretty peek at a priceless + perfect + on point pairing when it’s purely your painting party! Photo popped seconds before a parade of lil’ people were about to pour in for possibilities to ponder, and you’re the party person to please!

Are you following us on Instagram!?!

Happy Holidays! Tag us @handmakery with your creations on Instagram!  Follow our blog for more inspiring process-based art projects!  As always, thank you for following along on this artful adventure!  Send us a note anytime!  We’d love to hear what you’re thinking and dreaming!  Much love and happiness creating in this creative + colorful world full of collaboration + connection + community + crafting!  

xo Ami

DIY Cardboard “Candy” Cottage + First Friday Crafting

Happy December + Happy Holidays!  Save yourself long hours in the kitchen spent mixing, rolling, cutting and baking gingerbread dough – use cardboard instead for a ~ DIY CARDBOARD “CANDY” COTTAGE!

This fantastic upcycled material is abundant and easy to use.  Plus, you can avoid a sugar melt-down by skipping the temptation (and expense) of supplying bags of candy, sprinkles and royal icing – and sculpt your own candy cane columns and gumdrop windows using modeling dough.

This open-ended, creative process is fun for ages 5-12 (or, say, age 35+, if Mama is so inclined).  These cottages can be used as holiday ornaments, wall hangings, or added as a 3D element to a canvas painting, as shown here.  You can even make a village; a timeless, long-lasting heirloom, completely made by – hand from the heART!

Traditionalists who want a classic edible gingerbread house (complete with candies galore) can skip the inevitable sticky cleanup at home, and instead, deliver their children to December’s FIRST FRIDAY ~ CANDY COTTAGE WORKSHOP at HANDMAKERY, where crumble-proof walls and every sweet adornment will be provided.

See the full CARDBOARD “CANDY” COTTAGE article in Winter Edition | Issue 10 of the MOUNTAIN PARENT magazine offered FREE throughout the Roaring Fork Valley in print (oh SO beautiful) and/or online throughout the world!

SUPPLIES FOR CARDBOARD “CANDY” COTTAGE:

  • Printable download
  • Pencil + eraser
  • Cardboard
  • Scissors
  • White school glue
  • Hot glue (adult use)
  • Clear wrap
  • Masking tape
  • Modeling dough: Crayola Model Magic (white)
  • Tempera paint + brush
  • Glitter (fine white)
  • Chalk markers (optional)
  • Embellishments- white pom-poms, red & white paper straws, striped cupcake papers, wire stars, & white string.

PROCESS FOR CARDBOARD “CANDY” COTTAGE:

ONE  Download a FREE printable template on handmakery.com/blog.  Prepare a cardboard cottage cut-out ahead of time by cutting out two shapes:  one will be the cottage, the other will be the roof. Using white glue, attach the cardboard cottage to the cardboard roof by overlapping just a bit and gluing in place.  Dry.

TWO  Have a mixture of smaller pieces of cardboard scraps available that can be cut and used for pop out details.  Lighter weight cardboard is ideal as it’s easier to cut. Corrugated cardboard adds a wonderful texture and is also easy to cut.  Architectural pieces can be drawn and cut to create doors, windows, porches, fences, shed roofs, steps, a chimney, and more. Draw, cut, arrange, and glue down detail pieces using white glue.  Dry. Cottages will become one-of-a-kind mini-relief sculptures!

THREE  Cover completed cardboard cottage with clear wrap and use masking tape on the back of the cottage to temporarily secure.  This protected surface will allow modeling dough pieces to be placed on the house to dry without attaching to the cardboard cottage and will keep the cardboard protected from paint.

FOUR  Keep cottage covered with clear wrap.  Move into making accents using Crayola Model Magic which is a fantastic product for use, flexibility, and simple drying.  Start by rolling coils to imply snow and icicles. These pieces will take on the look of white icing. These snowy details can run along the edges of the roof, cottage, above the door + windows, and atop the chimney.  Use modeling dough to also make candies such as gumdrops, mints, candy canes, and other savory + sugary treats. Wreaths, snowballs, and snow piles can also be fun additions. Allow pieces to air dry in place, on top of the clear wrapped house.

FIVE  Paint dry modeling dough candies using paint and a small brush.  Allow painted pieces to dry on top of the clear wrapped cottage.  Pieces that are to remain white are beautifully painted with white glue and sprinkled with fine white glitter for added sparkle.  Dry.

SIX  Carefully set all modeling dough piece aside and remove the clear wrap.  Arrange pieces in place for gluing down onto cardboard. Most dough pieces can be glued with white glue.  It can be helpful for an adult to hot glue fragile icing pieces for strength and a quicker dry time.  Use chalk marker to add small details of color on the cardboard cottage.  White chalk marker can imply small areas of icing and colored chalk marker can add vivid details to the cardboard pieces.  Now, you can add your embellishments including,  white pom-poms, red & white paper straws and striped cupcake papers, wire stars, and white string for lights.  Most embellishments can simply be glued in place onto the cardboard. 

Be sure to tag @handmakery on Instagram with your Cardboard “Candy” Cottage creations as we’ll be featuring your work on our feed! #candycottage

A peek inside the studio at a mini-exhibit + recognition ceremony for our Winter-IE Wonderland Workshop as family and friends gathered to celebrate Cardboard “Candy” Cottages atop a wintery landscape!

JOIN US IN THE STUDIO ~ FIRST FRIDAY, DECEMBER 7TH:

>>>>> RESERVE TICKETS for DECEMBER 7TH!

Happy Holidays! Tag us @handmakery with your creations on Instagram!  Follow our blog for more inspiring process-based art projects!  As always, thank you for following along on this artful adventure!  Send us a note anytime!  We’d love to hear what you’re thinking and dreaming!  Much love and happiness creating in this creative + colorful world full of collaboration + connection + community!  

xo Ami

Art Making + Lindsay Jones Exhibit

A peek into our studio on First Friday in the heART of the Carbondale Creative District celebrating Dia de los Muertos in downtown Carbondale | CO!

Click to see all the artful action as artists created “in the style of” our guest artist ~ Lindsay Jones!

A collection of 30 pieces on our gallery wall created by local artist ~ Lindsay Jones!  This collection will display through December!  Lindsay is a contemporary artist, surface pattern designer, and graphic designer. She works in a variety of media including drawing, painting, digital art, sculptural constructions, and installations. Her fine art work reflects on ideas of landscapes and environments that are built, altered, shaped, and manipulated, while using playful patterns and abstracted imagery. When Lindsay is not working, you can find her outside camping, exploring remote lands, mountain biking in the desert, or racing cyclocross, all of which inspire her creative work.

A sculptural piece created by Lindsay Jones in her Pattern Recognition collection.  Artists of all ages created “in the style of Lindsay” as they made flags in her unique style and color pallet.

PHOTOS OF THE OPEN STUDIO ART MAKING:

Discover more about Lindsay Jones and pop into her shop to purchase her beautiful pieces featured in our gallery located at 449 Main Street in downtown Carbondale | CO in the heART of the Carbondale Creative District!

Tag us @handmakery with your creations on Instagram!  Follow our blog for more inspiring process-based art projects!  As always, thank you for following along on this artful adventure!  Send us a note anytime!  We’d love to hear what you’re thinking and dreaming!  Much love and happiness creating in this creative + colorful world full of collaboration + community!  

xo Ami

ABC Flower Safari Exhibit

Thrilled to introduce you to Gina Vide of  Willowday!  Gina is an amazing (…and oh SO talented) artist living in Sweden, between the sea and the city!  She’s flower-inspired, a maker of miracles + magic + moments, with an ornate eye for “delightful detail in the delicate” captured through design and illustration!  Her style is whimsical + wondrous, and completely full of woo + wow + wonder!  She loves creating + crafting with children and exploring a creative + colorful childhood.  So honored to have Gina’s ABC Flower Safari and Fir Fox + 24 Flower Friends travel to our studio for a little collaboration!  Literally, they came by airplane into Aspen, for First Friday ~ September, to celebrate our One Year Anniversary, in our NEW location on Main Street!  TODAY, Gina launches her ABC Flower Safari Art Prints!  Next month she’ll launch her NEW book ~ ABC Flower Safari!  The timing is just perfect to celebrate a sneak peek of her creations through a hands-on artmaking experience inspired by the artist herself!  Enjoy peeking into Gina’s amusing animal alphabet as a little tasty treat this Thursday!  Enjoy the joyous journey!

Our First Friday artmaking event ran from 6 – 8 PM.  Early birds anxiously waited outside the studio, with faces and hands pressed to the glass!  Happy faces were peeking in and excited to get creating with Gina’s ABC Flower Safari!  Yes, a true artful adventure for all ages!

Gina Vide creates magic with her whimsical creatures made from paper, paint, cardboard, and flowers.  Here you can see “Fir Fox” and a few of his furry friends as they take off by airplane from Sweden to visit the Rocky Mountains, landing in Aspen | CO, just before we picked them up for the ABC Flower Safari Exhibit!

Every letter of ABC Flower Safari is inspired by an animal and a coordinating flower.  Meet “Fir Fox” pictured above.  Can you even believe Gina created a full alphabet connecting an animal to a flower?  We have her ABC Flower Safari Art Print in the studio and we’re happy to announce these original prints are now available in her Art Print Shop!  You can also read more about our collaboration on Willowday!

A favorite photo of a little artist completely inspired by Gina’s “Fir Fox”!  Children used cardboard, paper, paint, and flowers to create their very own Willowday inspired masterpiece on First Friday!  Gina’s imagination runs wild, can’t even think about how whimsical her NEW book ~ ABC Flower Safari will be!  Love this must-see, “Fir Fox” Adventures | No 4 | ~ “Once upon a Friday, Fox read a fairytale in the fern fort.” #willowdayfoxtales

Gina’s “F is a Fir Fox” is part of a series she developed to spark imagination in kids and the world around them, using flowers, paper, cardboard, and animals.  You can use #willowdayproject to share some of your very own creations part of #willowdayflowersafari on Instagram!

Gina started this series with kids in mind.  It grew from her long interest in children, teaching, nature, play, and parenting with a fun crossover to illustration.  She loves the simplicity of elements and imagination found in nature walks with children that evoke a story.

We met several years ago on Instagram (@willowdaygram + @handmakery) and became part of the Rockin’ Art Moms.  Over the years we’ve kept in touch and have formed a friendship afar…someday we’ll meet!  Gina started a summer series, Friday Flowers for Kids, on Instagram.  She was able to complete her delicate + detailed series by September as the perfect highlight to welcome fall and First Friday!  It all came together and the gallery wall went up with ~ ABC Flower Safari handcrafted by Gina Vide!

A favorite letter is Gina’s “Lilac Llama”!  We weren’t able to get ahold of lilacs this late in the season but how this artist so lovely improvised!  Discover Gina’s 3D Lilac Llama with template to make your very own.

The studio was alive and in full bloom as children of all ages shuffled through the studio (sneak peek) with their families.  Picking flowers, painting cardboard, cutting and gluing paper, assembling parts and arranging pieces.

Look at this delightful dog inspired by Gina’s letter D “Daisy Dog” created by a nine-year-old, aka my daughter!

A most mastered “Hydrangea Hedgehog” inspired by Gina Vide’s letter H!

Love how this family formed a team of makers.

This sweet-sisterly duo spent the evening inspired, emulating Gina’s letter P “Peony Pig” for a priceless + pink + pair of pigs on parade!

This family “art affair” definitely brought community, closeness, collaboration, creativity, color, and craft to a complete circle!

Meet Gina Vide more in-depth in a Maker Mom interview over on hello, Wonderful!

A couple of happy zookeepers in the studio of safari!

Another F is for “Fir Fox” mastered by this maker!

Meet E is for “Eucalyptus Elephant” definitely a most favorite in the ABC Flower Safari collection!

This artist must have known she’d need to wear red to compliment, and really make her gorgeous green elephant pop in this priceless photo with a little P-O-W-!!! and polka dots!

Many artists were intrigued and inspired to create their own creations and unique combinations!  Love this delightful D for dolphin!

With our logo being the owl, couldn’t conclude without adding Gina’s letter O is an “Oxypetalum Owl” handpainted in one of our most favorite tints of turquoise!

Love how this mini maker matches her eyes to her owl’s eyes in a wide-eyed expression!  Hooo!

Next month Gina Vide will be launching her NEW book ~ ABC Flower Safari!  We look forward to celebrating with her!  Be sure you’re on Gina’s Willowday Mailing List!  Excited to announce HANDMAKERY will be highlighting a very special “fox celebration” inspired by Gina’s “Fir Fox”  which is perfect as we welcome fall, the changing seasons, and Gina’s NEW book!

In the studio, Gina also creates the most beautiful pieces using petals, leaves, and other items collected from nature during her walks in nature!  Definitely pop into her Art Print Shop and say hello!  Thank you Gina Vide for bringing your inspiration all the way from Sweden!  So LOVE all you do!

Tag us @handmakery with your creations on Instagram!  Follow our BLOG for more inspiring process-based art projects!  As always, thank you for following along on this artful adventure in beautiful Carbondale | CO at 449 Main Street!  Send us a note anytime!  We’d love to hear what you’re thinking!  Much love and happiness creating in this creative + colorful world full of collaboration + community!  

xo Ami

DIY Pet Portraits with Personality

My fabulous art students created a project personally dreamed-up and designed called ~ Pet Portraits with Personality.  With moving our studio to Main Street last summer, life got a little beyond busy so thank you for your patience with just getting this project out!  With fall in the air and back to school really here, thought it would be the perfect time of year to share this fun favorite with you!

Pet Portraits with Personality was a huge project created with children ages 10 – 14!  The artwork, 120 finished pieces, were then used for a local circulator bus (yes, a REAL BUS!!!) and a collection of 35+ community “bear-proof” cans.  Both the bus and can projects were designed to bring more art to the heART of our historic downtown!  So proud of each artist and their unique creation, contributed to both of these colorful community projects!  So happy to see our community come together to support both kid-friendly + child-focused art projects!  The artwork has brought a great deal of humor, color, and a whole lot of creativity to our community of Carbondale | Colorado at the heART of the Carbondale Creative District!  Don’t you just love how childhood and creativity completely collide, to completely capture community and collaboration!?!  Take a peek!

ENROLLING at HANDMAKERY.COM!  

FALL ART WORKSHOPS START IN 7 DAYS!!!  

WORKSHOPS + CLASSES + CAMPS

COMMUNITY BUS COLLABORATION:  Project Details

HIGHLIGHTS:  Unveiling Ceremony

COMMUNITY CAN COLLABORATION:

Read a fantastic article highlighting all the details about these upcycled Bear-Proof Cans wrapped with student artwork located throughout downtown!  Would you believe there are over 35+ cans throughout our community!?!  A huge thank you to the Town of Carbondale for taking on this project.  This particular can is located right across from our studio at 449 Main Street!  The day the install happened was just beyond exciting to watch out our windows!

SUPPLIES:

  • Pencil + eraser
  • Scissors
  • Gluestick
  • Realistic animal face photos for inspiration
  • Sketch paper + final paper + tracing paper + watercolor paper cut to size
  • India Ink
  • Watercolors including both liquid and traditional pallets
  • Watercolor brushes + water container
  • Lightbox or window
  • Colored pencils, permanent markers, acrylic paint, colored paper for additional details!

PROCESS:

ONE  Select a realistic animal and dream up your animal’s expressive personality.  Create several mini sketches focusing on the face, head, and shoulders.

TWO  Finalize your favorite sketch selection into a drawing, again with a focus on the face or upper body. Humanize your animal by adding human-like features, ex. eyes, mouths, shoulders, costuming and fun accessories, yet keeping a bit simplified, as individually drawn pieces will need to be drawn and cut out.

THREE  Finalized your favorite animal drawing to a specific vertical paper size, fill the space by going big and focused in.

FOUR  Trace each section of your drawing onto tracing paper at a window or lightbox.  Separate out each layer.  For example, the glasses would be a separate “drawn and cutout piece” from the face, to then overlay on top of the face.  Start with the largest shapes first, such as the face, neck, and shoulders.  It is very helpful to create bigger shapes to smaller shapes, working background to foreground.

FIVE  Place the tracing paper shapes behind the final watercolor paper at the window or lightbox.  Trace images onto heavy-weight watercolor paper in pencil.  Again, all individual pieces that make up the complete animal, will be all drawn as separate pieces.  The photos, above and below, should help with the visual understanding.

SIX  Before cutting apart, use India Ink and a small brush to outline all the separate pieces.  Remember to vary the line quality to keep your pieces more painterly so they capture both thick and thin for a more handcrafted flair.  Dry.

SEVEN  Plan out a color scheme- complementary, analogous, warm or cool, intermediate, triad, or monochromatic for the overall piece.  The color scheme should include the background.

EIGHT  Using watercolors, which could be liquid or traditional pallets style, paint each piece remembering to dry between colors.  Dry all pieces.  Cut apart all individual pieces following the outer edge ink so the varied edge lines are preserved.  Use a heavier weight watercolor paper to create a vibrant wash for the background.  Dry.

NINE  Assemble all the separate cutout/painted pieces using a heavy duty glue stick.

TEN  Onto delightful details!  Add highlights in eyes using white acrylic paint.  Add swirls using colored pencil or permanent marker by using a similar color.  Add texture and additional delightful detail.  Use cut paper shapes, ex. stripes or polka dots to create a contrasting background to pop the creature!  Most importantly, create a pet with personality and humor that comes to life with color, contrast, and human-like features!

A PEEK:  Into the Planning Process of the Bus

BUS

bus-color

A HUGE THANK YOU!!!

CPAC Carbondale Public Arts Commission

RFTA Roaring Fork Transportation Authority

Town of Carbondale

Carbondale Middle School

… for making these two community projects, completely focused on kid art, come together for our community!

Tag us @handmakery with your creations on Instagram!  Would love to see your ~ Pet Portraits with Personality!  Follow our BLOG for more inspiring process-based art projects!  As always, thank you for following along on this artful adventure in beautiful Carbondale | CO at 449 Main Street!  Send us a note or contact us anytime at hello@handmakery.com!  Much love and happiness creating!  xo Ami