TRASH TO TREASURES TIPS 2.....G thru N


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~~ G ~~

GIFT WRAP:  Foil papers from cigarette packages make wonderful 'wrapping paper' for presents. Foil candy wrappers purchased at a cake/candy supply store also makes great wrapping paper. They both are very thin and fold well around a block of wood.
 
GINGER BREAD HOUSES: You can use cardboard, timber or Fimo to make the houses. The last ones I made I purchased a box of erasers, as small timber is hard to purchase here. I cut up the eraser for the shape of the house and used cardboard for the roof them mixed white paint and baby powder for the snow with a sprinkling of snow glitter.  Erasers are great to cut. I also purchased erasers with red, yellow and green stripes and cut these up for gifts under the tree for small scales then you don't have to paint them.

GLASS:  Just about everything you buy these days, if it doesn't come in a box, comes in a rigid plastic "bubble".  Don't throw any of these away without first looking at its potential for "glass".  Use in picture frames, for windows in your house, on table & vanity tops, in ponds, or to cover anything to make it shiny!!  Study them all!!

GROCERIES: Cut out the colored ads on coupons in your Sunday paper....cereal boxes, aspirin bottles, cans of tuna, Spaghettios etc.  Paste these to blocks of wood and dowel pieces (painted appropriately).   Now you have little products for your house or store shelves.
 
~~ H~~

HAT STANDS:  Display your sunbonnets on golf tees!!  Stand them upside down, cut stem to various heights and glue a large round bead to the top.  Paint or decoupage to match decor.  Add hat!!
 
~~ I ~~

ICE CREAM SUNDAE:  Dimensional paint can look like ice cream and topping...some of the colors even have "ice cream" names (chocolate, vanilla, etc).  Roll a mini pom-pom or  wood bead in the dimensional paint to make the ice cream "scoop".  Drizzle the fudge (or other) topping.  Don't forget the cherry!!   I've put blobs of translucent cherry colored paint on wax paper, enhanced the "ball" shape when semi-dry, and then transferred it to ice cream.

ICE CRYSTALS for the Holidays:  Hey, my mother found this spray that does ice crystals on your window. It looks really neat! It's put out by a company that also puts out the snow spray. It's called "Santa Ice Crystals" by Chase Products and she found it for $1.99 a can at Ocean State Job Lot. You'd probably be able to find it at a craft store too.

I thought that you all could use it for holiday decorations or for the front of a Christmas roombox. It says to use on glass, so I don't know how well it would work on Plexiglas, but I would try it.
 
ICE CUBES:  I love this one!!  Get some inexpensive clear plastic canvas (used for plastic canvas needlepoint).  Cut it up with strong sheers and you have instant ice cubes!
 
~~ J ~~

JELL-O:  You can make "Jell-O" gelatin desserts (that actually wiggle) from the gel type candles. Have your "molds" ready (spray with a mold release first).  Light the candle and, as the candle gel melts, scoop up little spoonfuls of the melted liquid and pour into your molds.  You can even add "fruit" while it's still liquid.  Remove from mold when cooled and solid.
 
~~ K ~~
 
KITCHEN SINK:  Some of that plastic "bubble" packaging described in "glass" above is the appropriate size and shape for a kitchen sink, bathroom sink or utility sink!!  Paint the OUTSIDE of the sink shape the appropriate color...that way the INSIDE will still be "shiny" and porcelain looking.  Add faucets , spout. & drain hole.  A black Sharpie pen will work to draw in the drain or cut a silver circle from Christmas card and add black "hole".

KITTY LITTER BOX:  Hang on to those jelly containers from restaurants. They make great kitty litter boxes for the dollhouse pet.   Add some railroad supply 'gravel' and you have a "ready to use" litter box. ( One of our club members actually made the litter box with the kitty's 'business' in it....friends and family were really grossed out when they saw that.)

KNITTING BASKET:   Wind colored thread over small balls of clay (Sculpy, Fimo, Cernit), secure with glue.  If you want to use real yarn and have the patience...unwind each "ply" of lightweight baby yarn or crewel yard and wrap the clay ball using only 1 ply. If you can find embroidery thread in a non-shiny finish...that should give a good yarn appearance.  Place the yarn balls in a wood bowl or a basket. Add a couple of long pins which have been painted to resemble knitting needles. Add a reduced photocopy of your knitting pattern...and there you have it!!

To add a little more realism:  Drape loose end of yarn over edge of basket & in other "natural" positions. Put a little glue on your fingers and pull the yarn end thru them...then when you position the yard end, it'll stay put.  You could also knit a few rows onto the "needles"!
~~ L ~~

LAMP SHADES:   Paper cupcake holders come in sizes small enough for 1" scale!!  Use the full size cupcake papers for Barbie-sized lamp shades.

LATTICE:  Plastic canvas cut on the bias makes convincing lattice (and many other things!!).

LIGHT FIXTURE, CEILING:  Those old earrings you find at flea markets and garage sales....the big ones with all the beads on them.... make great fake ceiling fixtures.  Round ceramic drawer pulls make good ceiling fixtures too
 
~~ M ~~
 
MIRROR, SMALL:  Use a button back from the "covered button" sets and insert a small mirror or  a piece of chrome sticker.   Take an old cufflink turned upside down and glue the mirror to the little swivel thing. It makes a really good mirror to sit on a counter in a powder room or bathroom.
 
One of your old makeup compacts may have a mirror to hang in your dollhouse bathroom. You can paint this or decorate the edges with glitter, beads or anything tiny you want.

~~ N ~~

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Last modified: June 25, 2001