Lace for Your Jewelry: Resin Pendant Tutorial

Resin can be a fun hobby or business for the crafty miseducated diva in all of us. The possibilities are endless, allow your creativity to run wild and create pieces that are quite unique and fun. With some initial prepping steps, you can suspend just about any material in resin.

In this basic tutorial I will be casting jewelry pieces with resin, but you can use resin for whatever else you would like to make like paperweights, coasters, soap dishes and many other things. There are even many different types of resin that can be used, for different types of desired uses.

I myself use a two part casting resin that is pretty user friendly. I am a novice at resin, just learning as I go and getting better each time. Its fun and I thought I would share some basic tips and give crafty divas something new to try…cause like me I know with all this creativity you have inside of you, you always want to try something new. So this is something for you gals who are aching for a new creative outlet.

I chose to cast fabric for the purpose of this tutorial. I have played with sprinkles, glitter, and candy before. So I thought I would try something new, so here goes….

resin

Supplies

  • Easy Cast Resin
  • 2 Plastic Cups
  • 2 Stir Sticks
  • Wax Paper
  • Paper Towels
  • Resin Molds
  • Fabric of choice
  • Mask
  • Gloves
  • Timer

Before hand I prepped my pieces of fabric by cutting them a little smaller than mold shape, and sealed them off with mod podge, or you can use an acrylic sealer if desired.

Instructions

    1. Take a plastic cup and pour in 1 oz. of resin, then pour in 1oz. of the hardener in the same cup, so you end up with 2 oz. total. (Easy Cast has a ratio of 1:1)

    2. Take one of the stir sticks and gently mix the concoction, make sure not to whip as it causes air bubbles. Scrape the sides periodically and mix well for 2 minutes. The mixture will look cloudy at first but this will clear up after resin and hardener are mixed together thoroughly.

    3. Take this mixture and gently pour into your other clean plastic cup. Stir gently again for 1 minute this time. The mixture at this point should be clearer than before.

    4. Set mixture aside for 5 minutes, so the resin can self-degas. Take this time to clean up a bit and get your mold and fabric piece(s) ready.

    5. When ready, pour a little bit of resin into each mold, about a quarter full.

    6. Then place cut fabric, right side down into resin. You can use a toothpick to position and press fabric. This will also help remove any air pockets trapped underneath the fabric that can caused some bubbles.

    7. Then this is where you will need to practice some patience…let the piece(s) rest overnight or for several hours until cured. You can check if it is cured with a toothpick, this way no fingerprints will be left behind.

What I covered in this tutorial are the basics, but you can get more creative by adding different layers. Below are photos of some layer pieces I created, I hope you find them inspiring.

After your pendants are cured, you can jazz them up by drilling holes, adding jump rings, gluing on bails, posts, brooch settings, what ever you like, let your imagination run wild, its all up to you! Your end result will be beautiful and unique pieces.

A great source of reference and inspiration of mine is a book that I turned to when first approaching resin after multiple searches on Google, a book called “The Art of Resin Jewelry” by Sherri Haab. In this book she goes over in detail all different types of techniques with resin, like the so fun and yummy candy jewelry.

Athina’s Creations

See more in my shop here.

Originally published on 12/08/2009.

The Beauty Benefits of Bathing in Tea [Part 2]

Bathing in tea is not only beautiful and extravagant, it feels good. I’m a big tea and coffee lover in general and I can’t often use scented bath products as they aren’t the best for my skin or feminine health due to the chemicals they have. Bathing in herbs and teas is certainly a much better relaxing, decadent choice for most of us than sitting in bubble bath!

I still get messages from readers about our “The Beauty Benefits of Bathing in Tea [in Australia]” post by Michelle Walker and I decided it was finally time to do a beauty update! For one, many of you explained that you don’t have access to take baths so I’ve given you some more options for “bathing in tea.” Enjoy!

Great Teas to Bathe In

  • Chamomile: A great choice if you suffer from break outs or just want a glowing complexion. It’s no surprise that chamomile is also stress-relieving and relaxing, as it is commonly enjoyed to calm down before bedtime, so also try it as a relaxing bath before going to sleep.
  • Peppermint: A great refresher after a long day and a great choice to get you going. I even love simmering peppermint leaves on the stove as a winter blues pick-me-up and it’s a great scent to clear your sinuses if you’re feeling under the weather. I have also found peppermint is is very helpful if you’re feeling nauseated or sick to your stomach.
  • Green Tea: Green tea is also great for your skin as it contains antioxidants and a high amount of vitamin B, It’s a great choice for relaxing muscles and sweating out toxins. Also, as it has caffeine, it’s a good morning ritual.
  • Lavender: The most relaxing aroma (in my opinion) that helps you destress and will even improve a migraine. I keep a sachet of dried lavender beside my bed for just those reasons alone.
  • Jasmine: Jasmine is moisturizing and is said to improve stretch marks. The scent, to me, is intoxicating and one of my favorites to bathe in at the start of my day.
  • Rose: One of the prettiest teas to bathe in, of course you can toss in rose hips, rose buds and rose petals and feel like Marie Antoinette herself. What’s even better is this makeshift rose water tightens pores without drying them out and is also full of antioxidants. Rose water is a great toner–your skin will certainly thank you for this one!

Cream or Sugar?

Of course you can’t add sugar to your relaxing bath (a yeast infection waiting to happen!) but milk is a great addition to bath teas.

  • Milk Tea Bath: Milk contains a lot of fat and protein that leaves skin feeling supple. Lactic acid in milk helps to exfoliate and soften the skin leaving you with a glowing complexion. Add teas for more benefits.

Only Have a Shower?

You can still “bathe in tea!” Shut the bathroom door and let a steamy shower run for a few minutes on some teas and herbs placed within muslin, cheesecloth or pantyhose prior to getting in. Leave the tea bags in the shower while you bathe.

Steam Treatment

Another option is to heat the herbs in a simmer pot on the stove and do a steam treatment on your face. You’ll simmer the herbs in the pot, remove it from the stove and then cover your head in a towel while you hold your face over the steaming pot — be careful the steam is not hot enough to burn! Make sure you stay far enough from the simmering water or it will harm your skin (or mood!) more than improve it.

Happy Valentine’s Day! from POOCHIE

Valentine’s Day reminds me of the 1980s for some reason…
Perhaps it’s because I was born the day before Valentine’s Day and that happened to be in the 1980s.
So for many (the jewelry, candy and greeting card companies would hope) Valentine’s Day is a time to celebrate love.
For me it is a time to celebrate pastel hearts and the 1980s and all of the cute, pinkness splashed through the stores.
What does Valentine’s Day mean to you, if anything?

I was also inspired to add a couple of new love-inspired items to my shop!

One of them is a Lolita POOCHIE pin because I have always been a big fangirl of Poochie.

The other is a reprint of my Micro Zine (6 pages plus a front and back cover), 5 Reasons Why I Love You. It’s a “Valentine” for anytime, much like Poochie!

So my little Valentine gifts to you are…

and I would totally put these in the Valentine mail box you decorated and sat on your school desk

scanned 1980s Rainbow Brite Valentine’s~

a cute conversation heart coloring page~

Twin Stars Valentine wallpaper by Sanrio that I’ve had saved for years~

xoxo

Egg Mask Recipe & Face Steam For Clean, Tight Pores

One of my best friends, Emi, has a go-to recipe for improving and detoxing the pores on your face. My added secret is using the fresh laid eggs from my own backyard flock. I like to think that eating or using animal products by abused animals cannot be nearly as great for your skin. Do you agree? I know it’s a bit of a “radical” opinion in this day and age where both human beings and animals aren’t often treated as they deserve.

First fill a pan with water, add herbs and oils of your choice (I prefer mint, lemon peels, sage, lavender, tea tree oil). Heat the water until boiling.

In the meantime (while waiting for that blasted water to boil) crack an egg and separate the whites and yolk. Place the yolk as a mask on your face and décolleté.

Place the egg white in the fridge to cool it.

Wash the mask off when dried and tight on your face.

When the water is boiling take it off the stove. Place a towel over your head and over the pot, not too close (you don’t want to BURN the skin after all) and sit there at most for 10 minutes breathing and allowing the steam to cleanse your pores. Do not feel obligated to do 10 minutes, 5 is fine, just do not do more than 10 minutes. Feel free to play meditation music or a great Podcast while you’re at it!

After the allotted time remove the egg white from the fridge and use as a mask. It should be cold. The egg whites and the coldness will tighten your face. Wash off gently.

After you’ve finished with these steps please add your favorite facial moisturizer and voila! You’re now ready to go about your day.

I Love Contemporary Macrame Designs

Get this DIY set at Wool and the Gang!

Get this DIY set at Wool and the Gang!

As a kid I remember my mother having quite a lot of craft projects she was in the process of completing. My mother was always into making/reworking things, cooking, gardening, crafts. I distinctly remember a 70s mushroom rug she made that I would die for today, macrame tapestries and planters, layered candles with a 70s color palette. Of course when I came along things took a more cartoon-y feel with care bear pillows, pastel bunny paintings and bright rainbow everything. I didn’t appreciate all of the 70s beauty as a kid because I had been jaded by the bright rainbow hues I had grown accustom to being surrounded by. I despised quite a bit my polkadot brown, orange and yellow mushroom bed skirt, the psychedelic carpet, the orange velvet chairs. I started to hate brown, orange, yellow, green and red. I steered from the palette and wanted nothing more than bright pops of color, neons and pastels. I proceeded to cover myself and my room in these colors. I absolutely gagged at macrame; the hemp-y natural browns and mustard owl tapestries.

I partly feel that the time (1980s) I was born (both design wise and technology wise I lived in both worlds, pre-tech natural and post-tech digital) is one reason I have a constant battle going on within my brain of palettes and designs for my personal projects and home decor. Do I stick with 60s or 70s hues and keep loading my shelves with vintage, psychedelic beauties? With mushrooms and daisies? Do I cut back on the brights and pastels? Do I lean more towards my preference for modern Japanese-esque decor or my appreciation for the antique and ornate French decor? Do I engulf my home in the modern, minimal Swedish designs or run to the psychedelic bohemian love nest with drapes, floor pillows and tapestries? Will it ever just work together? If you know me you know my closet is the same. I do not and have not ever “matched.”

And here I find this visually-overloaded attention deficit again.. I have such an appreciation for crafts and handmade goods. I cannot seem to stick with crochet, knitting or sewing long enough to decide “that’s the one!” and so here I find myself admiring macrame and wondering why I once despised it when now I cannot imagine a better “fun” goal than taking on a project such as making a macrame chair or an advanced tapestry. This came about as my love of gardening has grown and expanded to the point that now I have plants here I cannot keep outside because of this (WACKY) Indiana weather. All of these plants would love being hung from the hooks in the dining room while the color pop of a macrame string excites me to a point I can hardly communicate. It’s likely because of the macrame goodies you can find on a quick google image search, the kind of search that sends you into a rabbit hole of, “I HAVE TO BUY, OWN OR MAKE THIS. It is my destiny.” So there I am. Color charged and obsessed. As obsessed as I still am with my recent hobby of raising chickens and learning enough about wood working to build a colorful coop with my husband.

What new craft or hobby are you finding interest in? Can you relate to the inability to pick one and stick with it? Are you always wanting to do more?

Photo from A Beautiful Mess Blog

Photo from A Beautiful Mess Blog

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Get this beauty at Niroma Studio

Get this beauty at Niroma Studio

macrame chair

Macrame Tutorials

  • Macrame Cushion (complete with pompons!)
  • Macrame Straps for Tube Top
  • Macrame School
  • Macrame Wall Hanging
  • Macrame Plant Hangers
  • Wool and the Gang Tutorials
  • The Low FODMAP Diet Helps With Bloating

    FODMAP diet

    First of all, I’m sure we can agree that diet fads are usually lame. They have little to no health benefit other than the diet-marketers making money and you being attracted with unrealistic body expectations and weight loss dreams. However this diet is not about losing weight.. it is a diet specifically helpful for those who struggle with painful bloating, IBS, sensitive stomachs, prior intestinal surgeries (ding ding!!) and other digestive issues.

    After my emergency surgery in October of 2014 I couldn’t eat most things… my small intestine was healing and painful. However because of this, when I was physically able, I had an urge to eat EVERYTHING. I ate ate ate and especially loved sugar and carbs. I have a serious sweet tooth. My tummy did not like this.. it was more sensitive than ever and it began to look like I had a beach ball under my shirt, even more so around “that time of the month”. My whole body was relatively thin other than this big bloat! I even had people asking if I was pregnant AND touching my belly when I was out.. how embarrassingly terrible!

    So my doctor had given me this diet and at the time I was just not interested. I didn’t have hope my stomach could change after this intestinal resection. I tried the medication and it worked a little bit but not to the extent I was hoping to relieve of this bloating and pain. After trying to do things my own way I finally realized I MUST try this diet regardless of how hard it would be. After that, I noticed a gradual change even within a week. I would wake up and my stomach would be flat, no bloat. I would go through the day and although it was hard to avoid bread and cake I continued to feel like I was not struggling with bloat! Hurray! Not only that but with increase in low fodmap foods I have been losing the extra weight I put on when I was eating unhealthily. I attribute this to eating healthier and exercising.. which are the only things anyone should be doing to get in shape. Starving yourself, trying fad diet pills, etc are likely just quick fixes and are not improving your health!

    So what do you eat (and avoid) on the low fodmap diet?

    FODMAP List

    Oligiosaccharides

    Avoid: Garlic, onions, wheat, leeks, nectarines, barley, rye, lentils, pistachios, kidney beans, chickpeas, broccoli
    Eat: Quinoa, rice, corn, potato, buckwheat, eggplant, squash, pumpkin, bok choy, cucumbers, endive, tomato, zucchini, gluten-free products

    Lactose (Disaccharide)

    Avoid: Milk, cottage cheese, ice cream, yogurt, sour cream
    Eat: Feta, cheddar cheese, parmesan, lactose-free dairy (or lactaid), almond milk (ensure inulin is not added ingredient), plain lactose-free yogurt

    Fructose (Monosaccharide)

    Avoid: High-fructose fruits and foods like apples, mangos, honey, asparagus, pears
    Eat: More evenly distributed fructose/sucrose fruits like bananas, blueberries, kiwi, raspberries, strawberries

    Polyols

    Avoid: Avocado, mushrooms, cauliflower, prunes, peach, cherries, blackberries, sugar alcohols (often in candy like: xylitol, sorbitol), molasses, watermelon
    Eat: Honey dew, cantaloupe, raspberries, stevia, white or raw sugar (limited), pure maple syrup

    Many of these foods should not be completely excluded, as they can be good for you if you’re not sensitive to them. On a low-FODMAP diet you aren’t eliminating these different types of carbohydrates completely—just reducing them — so if you slip-up it’s not the end of the world, keep going.

    Some Go-To Recipes

    Because the rest of my family is not really low-fodmap and eats bread, noodles, fruits and veggies that are high fodmaps.. I get major cravings. Some things I can make for them that they don’t mind: fried chicken with corn flakes vs crackers, noodles with rice noodles, homemade pickles (remember garlic and onion are very bad for fodmappers and that stinks!!). As usual my recipes are not exact measurements because that’s how I cook (by sight and feel).

    Grilled Cheese Quesadilla

    • Corn (gluten free) Tortilla
    • Cheddar Cheese
    • Tomato (love grilled cheese with tomato!)
    • Dollop of non or low lactose plain yogurt on top
    • Directions
      Place the tortilla in a greased pan or on griddle that’s on medium heat. Put some shredded cheese on top and when it melts place a slice of tomato on top, fold in half, top with a dollop of yogurt.

    Fried Chicken

    • Corn flakes
    • Bit of Corn Starch or Tapioca Starch
    • Salt & Pepper
    • Egg
    • Thawed Chicken
    • Directions
      Oil for frying (olive oil + bacon grease for flavor!)
      Heat oil to high heat, dip chicken into beaten eggs and then into crushed corn flakes mixture (with corn starch and salt & pepper). Turn chicken when browned. Remove when internal temp is at least 345 degrees Fahrenheit.

    French Toast

    • Gluten free white bread
    • Splash of Lactaid Milk
    • Egg
    • Vanilla
    • Cinnamon
    • Maple Syrup (actual maple syrup, not the sugary brands of syrup)
    • Directions
      Dip bread into the milk, eggs and vanilla. Heat in greased pan or on griddle until lightly browned on each side. Sprinkle with cinnamon. Top with a bit of maple syrup.

    Snacks

    • Rice cakes + peanut butter (check ingredients!) + banana slices
    • Plain potato chips (you can haz!!)
    • GH Cretors Chicago Mix (a serving takes care of sugary cheesy cravings!)
    • Corn chips + cheddar cheese + jalapeños + oven/microwave to melt cheese + no/low lactose dollop of yogurt
    • Banana + lactose free vanilla yogurt + sprinkles of raw sugar + thin popsicle stick + freeze for 1 hour = banana pop (my kids LOVE these)
    • String cheese stick
    • WOW Baking Co Lemon Burst Wheat & Gluten Free Cookies
      These cookies have no high FODMAPs! They also make other flavors but the only ones that might be ok are Snickerdoodle and Peanut Butter however I haven’t checked them!
    • Snack Stops: Target, Fresh Market and Whole Foods have a bunch of snacks made for those of us on restrictive diets if you look around and check ingredients! Gluten and dairy free have been more and more accepted in other grocery stores, as well.
    • Peppermint and Ginger teas (if you sweeten use white or raw sugar, not honey) are always a good idea for your tummy!

    bagged-lemon-burst GH CRETORS CHICAGO MIX yellow gluten free cake mix

    Those should give you a few ideas! For instance you can fry eggplant for eggplant parm with the same mixture as the chicken above but remember to make your own tomato sauce because garlic and onion are in most or all tomato sauces! You can also substitute spaghetti noodles for rice noodles (MAI FUN).

    As you see above, I found a new favorite dessert/snack food that doesn’t cause me bloating and doesn’t have any major offenders in it: GH Cretors Chicago Mix! This is really a treat because most candy popcorns I found had at least one big bloat-inducer or just left me feeling those same bloated feelings. It takes care of all of the cravings in one bag.

    More Tips

    Differing Information

    You might notice after exploring low FODMAP food lists that many different doctors and people disagree on foods. I find the best thing is to check Monash University‘s app list then to read about the ingredients myself if I’m not sure in a store. It takes some getting used to and it’s confusing and tough at first but it starts to make sense soon! It’s easier when you’re going and getting more accustomed to listening to your body (belly) and what things bother YOU!

    Spices

    Beware of SPICES! Although all spices except for garlic and onion are fine many spice mixes (including yellow curry!) have onion and garlic IN them. This includes broths. These two flavorful guys taste SO GOOD but cause me a lot of discomfort especially on this diet.. I notice very quickly if they are in something after I’ve cut FODMAPs down/out. So be sure to look out for them. Green onions (scallions) and chives are safe if only the green tops are used and they’re used minimally. So your cherished fried rice and noodles can survive as long as you skip the bulbed onions and garlic!

    How Long?

    If you decide you do want to adopt a low FODMAP diet, it’s best to talk to your doctor first. If you can, try to commit to the diet for at least a month before you determine if it’s beneficial for you and your digestive system. It’s best to keep a journal (I have one on my phone so I can always easily write notes about foods) along the way to document changes and reactions to foods. I find even low FODMAP foods can give me bloating and some high FODMAP foods won’t! It’s a good idea to keep it handy.

    Introducing FODMAP Foods

    Also after you try the diet for a month you can start to introduce new foods you used to love by eating one a day or so and see how they affect you. You might be skipping on something that you find you can eat with little discomfort.

    FODMAP Friendly Sites

    If you decide to try the diet, let me know your experience and if you need support! I’ll be sure to update about my journey more in the future. xo

    Make Homemade Lollipops Without a Mold

    Stay tuned to until the end of the “cooking” part and see mine and Colette’s super silly Lollipop dance to celebrate~ this is one of her favorite songs (she loves lollipops) and she has been wanting to make this video for so long haha! She also did one of her singing a Ramones song but I guess that one might come in the future.

    I’m super silly in this but the recipe is on YouTube and our lollipops are super spicy but excellent adult lollipops! The kids decided on a different dessert after they felt they were too hot! I guess Mary accidentally put a bit much cinnamon oil in them. Oops! I’ve already eaten 3 so far! ha

    Please subscribe if you enjoy! More videos on the way for this Youtubenewb~

    xox

    Desserts that are Eye & Tastebud Candy

    So I’ve been on a whirlwind of candy making, eating, fawning over and trying. I’ve been planning what sorts of sweets I’ll make for my wedding in October and which ones will be the best ideas! If you’d like to join me on my trip down the sugar rabbit hole then please grab a cup of tea (preferably with a LID) and jump jump jump!

    meringue_kisses_9349

    Merengue kisses are all the rage these days and they’re super simple to make… Here’s a recipe for the above merengue kisses!

    Coconut ice! Cute and tasty~ Learn to make it here.

    sprinkle-coconut-ice-2

    What about a SIMPLE but adorable dessert that uses store-bought marshmallows? You can get the information about making this super easy (but cute) dessert here~ what’s better than a bouquet of marshmallow pops?

    1.-Marshmallows-Bouquet

    Don’t you love marshmallow ropes? Those are adorable! You can learn to MAKE THEM here.

    homemade-marshmallows
    Make square marshmallows here.

    I cannot imagine anything more satisfying than melt-in-your-mouth cotton candy merengue cookies! You can learn to make those here.

    cotton candy merengue

    Or what about Cotton Candy MOUSSE? i know not everyone is a fan of mousse but I have ALWAYS loved chocolate mousse (chocolate mouse if know the reference from a favorite movie!) however my spouse believes that it’s too much fluff and should be a topping or accessory to the main dessert — ha!

    IMG_0268

    With my family going on little hikes we often need bagged snacks we can munch on in between meals. My dear friend, Twinkiechan, introduced me to this amazing Lucky Rainbow Chex Mix recipe and I nearly toppled over by sugar high from only seeing the photos~

    2013-03-13-LuckyCharmsChex-586

    Now everyone who’s close to me probably knows my FAVORITE desserts are creme brûlée and CANDY APPLES. How silly is that pairing? However candy apples have taken a big fall in my experience.. the fairs and festivals tend to have caramel apples and parties usually prefer chocolate apples.. or apples coated in almond bark… and they are NOT the same! I want that hard candy shell. I want the cinnamon candy perfect pairing with the sour, crisp apple. It makes my mouth send me to the moon!

    tumblr_lvc2dp1I931r6s2pao1_500

    Neon-Pink-Candy-Apples-SWEET-HAUTE

    This is the right kind of candy apple! This recipe teaches you how to make hot pink candy apples (how cute). I would only change the vanilla to cinnamon of course~ I’ve also heard of melting the red generic cinnamon candies for the apples and that seems to go well also! As with all hard candy you have to make sure it’s been heated to the correct temperature lest you have a tacky, teeth pulling shell rather than the crunchy perfection of a candy apple!

    tumblr_macaron_pastel

    Cooking With Videos

    One of the easiest ways to find and follow cute recipes is by doing a quick YouTube search! Then you can see how the process is really done without doing guesswork. It’s a great way to make more complex sweets!

    Macarons have been and are ALWAYS a win with me. I have had a life-long almond obsession (both taste and smell!) and they’re made from almond meal (plus other scrumptious flavors!!) and egg whites as well as tasty ganache in the center of the cookie sandwiches. What better way to make them than to give them a little tint of rainbow?

    Speaking of rainbows though.. (as I can always be found doing).. let’s add some pastel rainbow to the delicious merengue and VIOLA!

    I’m saving the best for last… this is one of my all time favorite cooking videos by decocookie (her channel is amazing). In this cooking lesson she teaches us how to make a Little Twin Stars cookie house! The cutest dessert ever.

    Thanks for drooling with me! Check back soon for more inspirational delicacies and feel free to let me know what your favorite desserts are!

    I love ZINES: How to Make, Browse and Buy Zines

    zines

    What are ZINES?

    Zines are small-circulation, usually self-published, publications that come in many shapes and sizes. And I love them. All shapes and sizes of them.

    Why do I love zines?

    I wrote this article long ago but I looked it up just today and it had NOTHING of substance so I’m rewriting it. You see, when I started Miseducated as a blog it was my version of a zine because I had ignored the blog movement for so long. I kept my site solely an artistic and nonsensical web site, self-made with hand-coded CSS and HTML. After I started having odd dreams about starting a zine shop (like some hippie record store with lots of incense, shag rugs and pouffes to sit on around tons of zines to read/buy) with my wares on display, I decided this was my brain asking sub-contiously to be involved online again. To be involved in making instead digital zine-like articles with collage art via blogging.

    A lot of our OLD beginning articles are like that: a page out of a zine just pasted on here with a few words. This article was one of those. I was a woman of few words and a ton of time to create personal and purposeless art back then. I did little more at home than sit around in my psychedelic robe drinking tea and smoking while playing my ye-ye collection and collaging nonsense together for this blog. I had no kids and no motivation to do much else.

    My job made me feel like a monkey in a factory so I did whatever I appreciated at home. My home was a 2-story 60s lounge pad and when I didn’t have a few friends over I was entranced by my world of pop culture archaeology carefully collected from others like me as well as thrift stores. I am not that girl anymore but I’d be lying is I didn’t admit that sometimes I do miss her. I’d certainly like to ask her advice on a few things I’ve been planning and making. She was too sad and too lonely though. Too much of a downer to relate to anymore.

    In case you can’t tell by now, I have a major soft spot for zines. I have a cherished a big collection of them organized in my studio (they almost got ruined with our last big rain because I had them out by the open window!). I’ve collected such an array of them that I’m going to start showing some of them via you tube videos so you can view/read out-of-print zines along with me. I even have zines from Japan because I collected them while I lived there.

    Zine Methods

    Generally zines that arrive in my mailbox are copied onto white or colored paper using the cut and paste method. This is similar to scrap-booking, each page is created using printed/written text and graphics or photos and then copied and reproduced using a copy machine (it’s a plus to work somewhere with a xerox). Although today many zines just use a few sheets of printer paper and are cut and stapled in home offices. There are some (fancy) zines who use color printing and there even are a few creators who still hand write and illustrate each and every zine. <3 In fact, I even made a PDF of an old zine I used to print because the color printing became too expensive to charge for the zine and in my opinion selling ads for zines is a big no-no. Nothing can bias a special, unique, self-made zine quicker than ads for companies who are simply paying you to be included.

    Drool-Worthy Zines

    Create Your Own

    Want to create your own mini-zine? There are a few patterns to try out floating around online. You can make your first one easy on yourself (sometimes the paper layouts when putting together advanced zines can be mind-blowingly confusing at first as I found when I used to print Tulip). If you need some help or inspiration (or contributions) for your zine LET ME KNOW. I’m a strong believer in supporting small-press.

    8 Page Zine

    makeazinezine
    Learn to make a zine by printing out this template onto 8.5 x 11 paper and making it into a DIY zine thanks to Dogooder Comics~

    24 Page Zine

    24-page-zine-assembly

    Featured Zine-Friendly Links

  • LA Zine Fest
  • We Make Zines – a rad zine community
  • 24 Hour Zine Thing
  • Zine World
  • Light Gasp – San Francisco zine/underground press distro
  • Cafe Royal – UK zine/underground press distro
  • Microcosm Publishing – independent publisher
  • Stolen Sharpie Revolution
  • Zine Wiki
  • Gluestick: Indianapolis’ Zines & Small Publishing Advocate
  • Irvington Vinyl & Books – zine events and shop in Indianapolis
  • Chicago Zine Fest
  • Positive Energy Project: Selecting, Cleansing & Charging Crystals

    how to care for crystals

    Selecting Your Crystal

    • Identify your purpose.
    • Look for a few crystal varieties that seem aligned in the area your purpose lies in.
    • Look at crystals and pick one that feels right to you or attracts you the most visually.

    If you’re in-tune with your intuition and emotions pay attention to how you feel (happy, excited, drawn to it), if I’m instantly imagining the crystal on my nightstand or sitting on my mantel then I’m likely to get it.

    amethyst crystal grid

    Cleansing Your Crystal

    Crystals are a mineral that absorb energy and hold onto it until cleansed. I like to cleanse my crystals when I get them especially because who knows what or who touched them and got absorbed and if I want to welcome that into my home.

    I have read and heard a lot from people advised to do just about everything in regards to cleaning them so be sure to chose the method that makes sense to you.

    For instance I really prefer sitting my crystals in a clear jar of salt water in the sun or moon light for a day or two but some crystals, minerals and pearls are too sensitive for such a treatment. If that’s so then I will light sage and hold them in the smoke for a few minutes, best outdoors, while letting it billow out and away. Be sure to sage yourself a bit afterwards.

    A good salt water solution is about 20% sea salt and the rest water. If you have actual salt water then that is best! When you’re done soaking them, pour the water outside into the earth.

    crystal grid ocean sandy beach

    Charging Crystals

    I charge my crystals in sunlight and moonlight. I sit them on a window sill at either time and let them charge for a day.

    Sunlight re-charges crystals with ultraviolet light. When crystals are harvested from the earth they are removed from the energy they were nurtured in. The crystals have been taking energy and nutrients from the God and the universe via the ground providing nutrients to develop into a crystal. They now need to absorb energies for renewal. The full spectrum of light restores the crystal’s depleted energies. The moonlight offers and even broader spectrum of energy, especially a new or full moon.

    angels aura crystal

    Activating Your Crystal

    Sometimes, a crystal can be asleep in a sense and not know it is going to be used for healing or meditative purposes. Making a spiritual connection with the crystal helps to awaken its consciousness. You can activate your crystal by holding it, praying while holding it, meditating on your higher dreams and aspirations while holding it, rolling it in incense, communicating that it is yours for comfort.

    Because each crystal absorbs energy (like a magnet, just touch one) they can absorb new instruction. Sometimes the crystal gets filled up with unconscious instructions from people handling the crystal, unaware they are projecting energy thought forms that are picked up and stored (alas the cleaning when purchasing/finding). When we add our own energy and prayers the crystal will then resonate with that amplifying, broadcasting, and projecting the new set of energy patterns to ourselves, others and our environment (I most often use them to just enhance my environment or hold while meditating/praying).

    The way I do this is the same way I cook, which is also a meditative, prayerful and reflective state for me in connection with God and the universe. I think about love, the things I love and value, affirmations to myself and my family (and even the world) and I imagine infusing these things into the food, crystal, candle, whatever it is I am working with. Then I feel the energy of that love and healing, the energy of my higher self, emit through the crystal, the smoke, the meal when we eat. Most often I visualize healing, protection from God and love as these are the things I most appreciate in our lives.

    crystal grid

    Where to Buy Crystals

    There are usually stores that carry minerals, crystals or New Age-y materials in cities. We have a few here. However you can also find them on ebay and other online boutiques.

    crystal cactus The Playful Soul Broadripple