Tag Archives: Club Creative Studio low cost creativity

Bread-Making vs Bead-Making

28 Dec

Being creative in the kitchen can be fun.

Being creative in the kitchen can be fun.

Club Creative Studio is sharing creativity in a different way today. We’d like to encourage you to be creative in the kitchen.  If you are a natural at being comfortable with kitchen creativity, specifically baking great. If you find it challenging to stick to a recipe and create food in a step-by-step scientific matter, then open up your world and try something new…make bread! I can appreciate making bread now because of these comparisons: Making bread, like art takes time but, in the end it is valued for the time spent and the one-of-a-kind aspects of each creation. Each loaf of bread is unique unto itself, just like Club Creative Studio art is.

I made bread and it is just as time consuming as making beads!

I made bread and it is just as time-consuming as making beads, and just as great to enjoy in the end.

I don’t really know what prompted me to try to make bread. It may have been watching many food network shows in a row that gave me the confidence to want to try to be successful in the kitchen.  Normally, this is the last place that I want to be. I am most comfortable working with a different kind of material my “dough” is most commonly polymer clay, or glass not flour and yeast.

In comparison, however, my workspace supplies and the kitchen materials do have similarities. In fact, I have many stolen tools from my kitchen that I have transformed for use exclusive to clay. For example, the cutting board, pastry cutters, the sharp pick-like tool for cracking nuts, various mint molds and cookie cutters, pasta machine, toaster oven, mini-chopper, rolling-pin, empty spice containers, spice rack, bamboo sticks and empty tin cans are all now part of my studio tools because they are most used to benefit me there.

I can appreciate knowing that there is room for adjustments and experimentation in both settings.  There is an exact science to creating items out of polymer clay and glass, as well as bread-making techniques.  I am sharing ways today that one recipe can allow for experimentation.  Incorporating your own personality into your art and baking can be an important aspect to sharing your skills in a more expressive way.

Below is the basic recipe that I followed to make my loaf of wheat bread. What I found online was wonderful. The recipe was posted and then many others posted their comments and questions. Many shared how they made the recipe their own to fit their needs or just try out their different creative ideas with the recipe.  This was interesting to me to learn the various ways that people used ingredients to change the recipe to suit their specific tastes.  It made me realize even more that we are all individuals. We may all like bread as a common love, just as we may all like jewelry but, we also have our specific needs and taste, just as we have our individual taste in jewelry fashion and needs of specific styles.

Honey Whole Wheat Bread makes two loaves 1 lb whole wheat flour 12 oz hot water 8 ounces bread or all-purpose flour 1 5 oz can evaporated milk, 1/3 cup honey 2 teaspoons salt 3 teaspoons instant yeast an additional 1/2-1 cup flour, as necessary, to achieve the desired consistency.

Making bread is sort of like making beads...

Here is a close-up of my home-made bread. Making bread is sort of like making beads, both take time to create.

 http://www.thefreshloaf.com/recipes/wholewheathoneybread

Mix the hot water and whole wheat flour together in a bowl. Cover the bowl with plastic and set aside until around room temperature, at least 1 hour. Add the milk, honey, salt, yeast, and bread flour to the original mixture and mix until well combined. Add additional flour and knead by hand or in a stand mixer until a tacky but not completely sticky dough is formed. Place the ball of dough in a well-oiled bowl, cover with plastic wrap, and set aside to rise for 60 to 90 minutes. Divide the dough in two and shape the loaves. Place the loaves in greased bread pans, cover the pans loosely with plastic (I put them in a plastic bag), and set aside to rise again for 90 minutes. During the final 30 minutes of rising, preheat the oven to 425 degrees. Place the pans into the oven and immediately reduce the oven temperature to 375 degrees. Bake for approximately 45 to 55 minutes, rotating the pans once so that they brown evenly, until the internal temperature of the loaves is around 190 degrees and the bottom of the loaf sounds hollow when tapped.

My home-made bread sliced and ready to enjoy.

My home-made bread sliced and ready to enjoy.

Here are a few things that people changed in the recipe to creatively make it their own:

~substitute milk for evaporated milk

~ add more water instead of milk

~ substitute soy milk for evaporated milk

~substitute dried whole milk powder

~add agave nectar instead of the honey

~add sugar to taste

~add molassas instead of honey

~add raisins, sun flower seeds, or oats

~reverse the flour measurements of wheat and white

~brush egg on top of bread to finish

~pour additional honey on top of dough to bake in

Let me know if you try the recipe out, adjust it, or make a different type of bread. I have learned that bread-making like bead-making takes time and patience, and the methods can be altered to express your own creativity. It was also well worth it to smell and taste a hand-made bread creation made from scratch, just as it is worth it to wear a hand-made beaded item. I will stick to bead-making for now as my “go-to” creative activity vice bread-making but, it won’t stop me from being creative in the kitchen when I have to be there.

To view more creative items made with beads (not bread), check out the evolving inventory of hand-made beaded items at: http://www.clubcreativestudio.com

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Christmas Crunch: Quick and Easy Project ll

18 Dec

Transform a plain wood item into a colorful item with a personal touch.

Transform a plain wood item into a colorful item with a personal touch.

Welcome to Club Creative Studio’s blog with the focus on creativity.  I am adding a few posts about using your creativity in a crunch-time situation. It is that time of year that many stress about the time that they do not have to be creative for the holidays.  Maybe it is a lack of innovation of gift-giving ideas, maybe it is the stress of the challenge to do something new and creative in decorating, baking, cooking or gift-giving or gift wrapping.  Whatever the creative challenge, here is another post for a suggestion to use your creativity in a quick and easy project.

It doesn’t take as long as you think it does to be creative with acrylic paints.  You can transform a wood item into a colorful work of original art with a bit of paint and patience.  While there is a time and a place to appreciate wood for its natural beauty, some items just lend themselves to adding paint to beautify a wooden item in a different way.

Today, I painted a wooden nut cracker home accessory and changed the appearance from plain to wild, crazy, festive and colorful.

It is easy to transform a wooden holiday accessory into a more decorative item.

It is easy to transform a wooden holiday accessory into a more decorative item.

The first step is to find an item or ornament made from wood that is smooth and ready to accept paint.  I applied a thin layer of gesso acrylic primer to my wooden nut cracker item.

I applied one layer of gesso to prime the surface.

I applied one layer of gesso to prime the surface.

Using acrylic paint, I applied my paint to the wood figure with ideas to make it a “non-traditional” looking item. I wanted my nut cracker to be bright and colorful, with pattern added after the larger areas were painted for a unique look.  When you see the finished product at the end of this post, I think you may agree that the mission was accomplished.

Painted item ready for the next step.  The next step is adding the details.

Painted item ready for the next step. The next step is adding the details.

I love defining areas and adding details with black as a sharp contrasting color.

To add detail to the finished painted portions, I used a black felt permanent marker to add my swirls and decorative detailed areas.  Adding pattern with my marker seemed to make this item even more fanciful and imaginative.  A light coating can be added as a final touch for gloss or a matt protective coating if desired.  I hope that if you challenge yourself to create a painted wooden project, you can be expressive and end up with a one-of-a-kind festive item.

My finished project! The details make a polished look in the completed art.

My finished project! The details make a polished look in the completed art.

Although I love creating in clay and glass creations like the hand-made art you find in the Club Creative Studio website (http://www.clubcreativestudio.com) I have another love for using paint, especially acrylic.  I love that this medium has an easy clean-up process and you can mix your own colors with ease.  The fast dry-time is also a plus for getting your project done if you feel the holiday crunch for time.

Christmas Crunch- Quick and Easy Projects

16 Dec

Welcome to Club Creative Studio’s  blog where the focus is always on creativity.  With Christmas fast approaching, I am certainly feeling the “Christmas Crunch”. It is the time many feel rushed, hunting for quick solutions.  Many of your creative endeavors do not need to be time-consuming.  In fact, sometimes is a simple display of creativeness can mean the most.

Here’s the first of a few posts that will deal with the holiday season theme suggesting project prompts that are fairly quick and relatively easy to complete.  Let’s not stress being creative.

Hand-Made Gift Tags

Let’s create simple yet fun gift tags. You can do this inexpensively and with scraps and other found objects around the house. Using the computer is a fast and easy way to make gift tags because of the editing possibilities and the quick process. Maybe you want to combine the computer with other elements to create your tags.  I used pre-cut blank tags but, making your own from scrap stock paper and using a hole punch is just as easy to customize your color choices if you have those scrap booking supplies close on hand.

Basic supplies for gift-tag making.

Basic supplies for gift-tag making.

Supplies I used in the creation of my tags were: paper tags and ribbon,  scissors, decorative tapes, permanent markers in various size points and colors, foam stickers, scrap wrapping paper, brads, double stick tape, stamps, ink pads.  Dividing the tag surface into sections will give you an area to focus on. The new printed tapes out in the scrap-booking section of your local craft stores are fun to experiment with.  Feel free to cut the tape to suit your specific design needs.

Hand-made tags with paper "yo-yo" flower added.

Hand-made gift tags with paper “yo-yo” flower added.

For the paper “yo-yo” flowers you see on my tags, you’ll need a paper strip of printed scrap paper cut in a rectangle. The size of your flower and center opening will vary in size with your cut paper width and length cuts. Using the basic accordion fold, pick a thickness and keep the folds back and forth consistent.  Glue two stop ends together overlapping slightly and your “flower” is ready to add  a brad to the center. For a finishing touch on the flowers, I marked the raised and folded sections with metallic marker and placed double stick tape on the back to adhere to my blank tag area.  Let your creativity flow as you save money and create one-of-a-kind hand-made gift tags. It is certainly part of your gift!

Club Creative studio gift tags.

Club Creative Studio gift tags.

Make It FUNtional

13 Dec

Club Creative Studio’s blog has a focus on creativity.  Today’s post features a simple transformation of art.  I have often found the need to change something based on how I want it to function and serve a purpose for me.  With specific needs in mind, almost anything can be transformed and upcycled with creatively to fit a specific desire.

I recently went on a  gallery and store hop with a friend Lauren, in an area that is full of interesting places.  To mark our memories, I purchased a small piece of art at an import store.  This carved wood piece is from Bali.  Right away, I loved it and I knew how I wanted to display and use this item in my home as a creative form of inventive storage.

Lauren and I with a creative find from Impact Imports, PA

Lauren and I with a creative find from Impact Imports, PA

I wanted a new place to display and hang some of my personal necklaces, for an easy way to locate and admire them.  This carving inspired me to use the bottom portion for this purpose.  The tricky part was to figure out how and where I wanted to place the attached screw-hooks.  As with anything you are about to drill into, you want to make sure that you are making the right decision and make your marks correctly the FIRST time.

These are the hooks I used for my project.

These are the hooks I used for my project.

In order to not deface the art by placing the hooks directly to the front of the art, Lauren had the suggestion to place the hooks from under the bottom lip of this art. That made perfect sense and left me with the option to remove the hooks at anytime, if I wanted to display this in a different manner at any other given time.  The holes could be easily filled later and for the meantime, were at the bottom of the art so it isn’t obvious when and if I removed the hooks.

Added hooks on the bottom lip of this art.

Added hooks on the bottom lip of this art.

Finished art transformed in to a display jewelry hanger.

Finished art transformed in to a display jewelry hanger.

The hooks serve as the resting place for my hanging necklaces. I love the functionality of this and the art as well. It is placed in a room that I see it often, and I appreciate the added functionality of this art. This art has now been adapted to my needs.  I made it personal to me and useful to me.

Have you had the opportunity to alter art? Tell us about your experience and success of your project!  If you are looking to do a similar project, I suggest you make sure you have a stable structure to add your hooks to, making sure that your screws do not penetrate through the wood entirely. Space your hooks evenly, secure with adequate twist, and hang over-all project in a manner similar to hanging framed art, with care and concern for strength of nail choice.  good Luck with your creativity!

Puffy Paint Recipe

3 Oct

This will probably be the shortest post ever from Club Creative Studio.  In today’s TNT (This-N-That) post, I want to share a creative recipe for “puffy paint”.  The ingredients are from the kitchen. Before you gather your mixing supplies, take some time to also recycle and collect the containers you wish to place your “paint” in.

Take time to clean out your recycled containers for this project.

Any recycled plastic bottle that is also a squeeze-type container will work the best. Those plastics from items like emptied shampoo, dish soap, syrup, ketchup. mustard, honey, salad dressings and oil containers, will work fine, for example.  Take note of the variety of lid tips because this mixture will be thick yet you want it to flow easily out of the tip of the container you place the paint in.

Try it for a fun, different and inexpensive project.  It may be exactly what you are looking for in price, texture and technique.

Here is an example of how you can focus this technique on a fall decorative creation.

Try a simple, yet striking design like Elsie Larson’s idea from the site Beautiful Mess blog or a more complex design.

Puffy Paint Recipe:

1 Cup Salt

1 Cup Flour

1 Cup Water

Food Coloring

Mix well, you really don’t want large lumps to form and you want it to flow out of your container tip. Have fun creating with this low-cost activity.

Give Me Fifty or More

24 Jul

Creativity is awesome.  Creativity can play out in all sorts of ways. As I spend a little time on the internet each morning, I often come across images and information about odd creativity. Most times that is the type of creativity that lends to having questions and amazement associated with it.  How do artists get inspired or even complete the work that is imagined in their minds?

As a “Two-Cent Tuesday” post topic today, I consider those unexpected finds on the internet to be low-cost creative finds. Today, you can even go to places where there is free-Wi-Fi or free internet connections and search-away for free.

Finding information on the internet about artists and their art in particular, can inspire us, inform us and enlighten us.  They can give us a reason or a topic for discussion and a chance to “add our own two-cent opinion” about their work.

Club Creative Studio is happy to share this creative “invention” that I first came across through my online Twitter account: ClubCreativeArt.  The creation of this double-decker bus was made to be able to do “push-ups”.  It is the brain-child of Czech artist, David Cerny.

As inspiration, David Cerny in celebration of the 1012 Olympics, has used London’s symbolic red, double-decker bus as a starting point and focal point to his artful creation.  He magically turned it into a mechanical ‘athlete’ capable of doing push-ups.  That’s right!

The first thing to come to my mind was the phrase: “Give Me Fifty” as in doing fifty push-ups on the spot but, I am sure that at this point there is only ONE of this kind of vehicle.

His creation is entitled the “London Booster”.  The electrical engine powers the vehicle’s two muscular “arms” moving up and down like the motion of doing a push-up suggests.  The bus performs the push-up motion off the ground.

Although you are not able to hear in the video clip, apparently the bus also plays sound recordings of grunts and moans to simulate ‘tough physical efforts’ of doing actual push-ups!

Want to see this creation in person? The London Booster will be performing push-ups outside the Czech Olympic House in Islington, where the artist hopes it will inspire his fellow countrymen to win medals during the London Olympics. It sure motivates me to be stronger!

I hope you are able to search a low-cost method like use of the internet to find ideas and information on creativity and the people who create it. It is a source for inspiration.

Creative on Contact (Part l)

10 Jul

Club Creative Studio likes to reserve the Tuesday post for low-cost creative projects.  Today’s Two-Cent Tuesday post is another way to use your stored up creativity in a low-cost manner.  Decorating can be costly but, there are ways to avoid that if you use your imagination.

This is a fun project with low-cost factors.

Among the many types of individuals that are penny-pinching these days are the many college bound and college dorm resident students.  You don’t have to be among is category to celebrate your creativity in this suggested project but, it is an ideal solution to decorating and personalizing your dormitory walls, or any wall.  Turn your doodles into art.

This post will feature the art of my daughter and her project intended to decorate and place her mark and personality upon her walls of her future living space.  Last year she had a focus on using post it notes to decorate her plain white walls of her dorm.  This year her space will be colorful and personal as well.  She is using clear contact paper as her medium. This sticky on one side only plastic is low-cost at less than six dollars for a roll of transparent Contact brand paper.  She also used her colorful Sharpie brand permanent markers.  It would be helpful to also use a flat long surface to work on.

My daughter used clear Con-Tact Brand in this decorative project.

To begin, gather your Sharpie brand markers, they work best because they are colorful and adhere nicely to the slick surface of the Con-Tact paper.  You may wish to use additional paper underneath the ends of the paper so that the markers do not damage your work surface. Sharpie brand markers are permanent markers.

Unroll and begin at one end of the paper and start your decorative doodles.  You can letter quotes, draw illustrations, write down positive affirmations and mantras and stick photos or cut outs under a section of the clear paper.  Whatever you put on or under your sheet of paper will show up nicely through the transparent and protective adhesive plastic sheet.

A section of my daughter’s wall art project.

Consider your designs to coordinate with the color of your wall.

It took a while to add to the entire roll. So you may want to do this project as a group art project or invest time if you do this as an individual.  My daughter intends to use her entire decorated roll as a wall border.  She will place it as a wide strip across her focal wall at eye-level to add a splash of color to her over-all decorated wall.  If there is additional left over after fitting to the space she wants covered, she was thinking of also placing a strip or sections onto her floor.  Con-Tact paper will be easily removed later and can be used on many type of surfaces safely.  She has used it on her mirrors to decorate the corners of them, on her desk-top to decorate that work space, on cabinets as cut-outs like decals or stickers would be used and she has also used this method of decorating on her windows.  A whole lovely theme could be incorporated with this very low-cost method.  Best of all, when removed, you can change out your theme or decorative written focus.

In this section: My daughter incorporated ovals as “fill-in-the-blanks” for others to add their “two-cents” to her wall mural creation.

This self-adhesive is a little tricky to apply alone if you use a whole sheet, so have some help on hand when applying.  Make sure that you have an idea of the total length you wish to cover, do some measuring or cutting.  apply to a clean, smooth surface. You can use a squeegee or wall paper smoothing tool to aid in getting bubbles out of paper when you flatten it to the wall.  Your hands rubbing across the surface will do well enough however, if you take the application process slowly.

It is NOT recommended to apply to wood or any water-based paint unless it is given a coat of varnish or shellac because it will stick and be removed with residue from this type wall. Test the wall if you have concerns.  For best results in application, the manufacturer of Con-Tact suggests that the surface be above 55 degrees farenheit  or  13 degrees celsius for best results.  They also mention that some shrinkage may occur so overlapping can be done.  This is also helpful to do if you are concerned about edges being touched or rubbed.

Draw directly on the Con-Tact paper to create your unique designs.

When you peel off the backing, you want to try to do this evenly.  For covering a wall which is a very large section, it is best to have help and peel small sections.  We will be doing this together in a few weeks so I will be sure to blog about how this turns out at a later date.

For now, I’d also like to share that one technique of application could be to begin at the middle (center) of your wall and press outwards towards the edge.  You may also use a ruler or cloth to smooth out the bubbles that may form when applying. We like this material because it can be lifted to reposition easily and get out any wrinkles that are formed. It is fun to see your wall “come to life” with your art. I can hardly wait to see what my daughter’s art looks like up on her wall.

This material is plastic so you should be aware that pulling too hard will stretch and distort your paper and in turn your images. Use care to place your finished project on the wall of other surface you wish to adorn.  If you are planning to cut your paper at any point, it is nice to also know that the back of Con-Tact brand paper they have pre-marked straight lines to follow to ensure a straight cut, they have also marked with measurements, so that is such a handy-dandy element to help you adhere and alter your paper art.

Make your banner art as long or as short as you wish.

Be sure to visit the blog again in the near future to see how her project looks in her living space.  I’d also love to hear if you try this method of low-cost decorating yourself.  Good luck and happy creating. We are CREATIVE EVERY DAY and hope that you experience fun as you attempt this project sometime yourself.

The One Dollar Shirt

29 May


Club Creative Studio offers ideas for creativity weekly and today we hope that you have a few bucks to spare for creating today’s Two-Cent Tuesday challenge.

Take the advice and guidance from these informative videos as you practice making a unique dollar bill shirt just in time for the upcoming celebration of Father’s Day! Even though this project does cost more than a few cents, it certainly does not cost more than a few bucks to create! Happy folding.

Plastic Painting Project Part l

18 May

Daughter’s contribution: acrylic painted background.

Club Creative Studio art has a main focus on bead-making, jewelry making and using hand-made clay and glass beads in interesting ways. But, because creativity is limited only to one’s imagination, it is natural that other materials take center stage from time to time.  This post informs you of a group project using mixed media on a painted canvas.

Exploring the uses of a variety of supplies opens your mind to new techniques and use of materials. Sometimes the most unconventional materials used, make a project extra interesting. There is a growth and a new-found appreciation to be found in using new materials. In our mother/daughter art project we used primed canvas, acrylic paint, permanent markers in black and metallic silver, heavy gel gloss medium, recycled plastic soda bottles, ink and hand-made polymer clay beads.

This post is part one of a two part explaination of what we created as our group project.

Many enjoy the challenges of recycling. There is also the thrill to know that you have not only helped develop a creative mode but, you have used throw-away objects in a new and exciting way.

Recently my daughter and I joined forces to create an inspirational painting for the new studio space of Club Creative Studio. I knew that I wanted to incorporate many texts within our canvas because I love being inspired by creative quotes. And my daughter knew that she could contribute by painting the background of the canvas for me to use as a colorful backdrop for whatever was developed on top.  To begin we set up the easel and let her go with the flow for the painted background portion.

acrylic painting swirls of color help create the feeling of movement.

Next, we added the quotes about creativity throughout the entire canvas, using permanent markers and varied the are thickness and font style of each quote applied.  Glossing over the entire surface, we added protection and a slight sheen to the canvas surface. Adding a gloss seems to also intensify the paint tints too so it is a double pleasure to use it.

Inspired by quotes about CREATIVITY.

Finally, we added some unexpected elements by adding recycled and melted plastic bottle flowers, with a hand-made polymer clay bead for each center bloom on the canvas.

Melted plastic bottle formed to be a flower bloom.

Follow this blog post on Two-Cent Tuesday for Part ll of this Plastic Painting Project. I’ll show the completed creation and explain how we made the recycled plastic bottle blooms.

Creativity: Pass It On

15 May

Club Creative Studio shares information about CREATIVITY.

Today, is Two-Cent Tuesday and that means I blog about low-cost creativity.  I’d like to share a suggestion that is also a “no-brainer” activity for the one that is somewhat crafty or artistic already.  If you look upon your artistic time as a place to experience personal serenity or creative growth as a creative outlet for personal growth, take some of that time to consider sharing your passion for the arts.

There are opportunities for creative growth in sharing the passions for arts you have with others around you or in the community.  There are opportunities for sharing your trials and errors by blogging about your experiences, teaching your craft, being an active participant in a formed group supporting the arts or allowing someone to work alongside of you while you physically create art.  Help the visual learner experience creative growth from your artistic expressions.

Share the love, and reasons why you create.  Pass the ideas of creativity along.  Show someone else how your passion makes you feel. Pass on the creativity bug, and you may find that you grow in appreciation and idea-flow as well.  Watching the wheels turn from other creative people is contagious and inspiring.

Creativity: Pass it On. Share your passion with others.

If you are busy being creative in your space anyway, just invite someone to explore your supplies alongside of you. Having creative company gives you someone to get instant feed-back from if you are sharing questions and experiences.  Creating along side someone, gives you on-the-spot ideas that turn into motivation and courage to try something new in technique.

Helping make beads with Club Creative Studio.

You can be the model and mentor and not even realize it by merely allowing someone to work along side you.  As an example of being a creative model, take into account the times that you sit near a child simply “playing” with clay.  Perhaps the very young do not know how to make a “clay snake”.  By offering a “copy-cat” situation, seeing becomes doing and thus, you have shared creativity.

Creativity: be a creative model.

By sharing time when you offer unstructured guidance, you give the gift of confidence to someone exploring their own creativity.  How will you nurture creativity in others today?

Hand-made gift idea framed scrapbook page and mini-photo book.

As school days end with summer vacation near, the art classroom does not have to disappear until next year.  Nurture creativity around you and encourage, inspire, prompt and challenge creativity to be explored in everyday life.  Creativity is indeed contagious.  Pass it on, and see how it spreads!  Happy creating to you and yours!

For more creative prompts, please check out past blog posts.  And follow the creativity on Facebook http://www.facebook.com/ClubCreativeStudio Push the like button and you’ll see additional ideas on how creativity and the creative process is explored.  I share creative creations at http://www.clubcreativestudio.com You will want to check that out, as the creative ideas are plenty!  Have a great time as you are inspired or inspire others to Be Creative Everyday!

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