Archive for the ‘How-To’ Category

Creative Party Planning: Interactive Chalkboard Mural

Tuesday, September 15th, 2015

One of my favourite memories this summer involved creating an art piece for exclusively vinyl DJs Record Collective at their annual back alleyway party. I was given free reign to do whatever I wanted for the piece, the only parameters being that it needed to be interactive and also cover up some graffiti on a wall. I browsed the store for inspiration and landed on our bottles of chalkboard paint. I had seen a lot of DIY projects involving black chalkboard paint floating around the web, but no multicoloured murals so decided to take on the challenge.


Using one of my favourite Japanese Katazome-shi paper prints as inspiration, I drew out my own simplified version of the multicoloured mountain range, and picked up a few bottles each of our American Craft’s chalkboard paint bottles ($8,95, 250ml each) and a package of our dustless chalk ($2.95).


I began by drawing out a rough outline of my plan on the wall, being sure the design would cover the unsightly graffiti.

Next using painters tape I masked off some details within the mountain range to speed up the the process of painting the mural itself. Once dry this tape would act as a relief and expose the unpainted brick below.


After a long night of taping and painting, once I was sure the paint had completely dried, I went to town peeling away the tape, easily the most gratifying part of the whole process.


The finished result wowed and intrigued guests, who were happy to have a creative activity at the busy event. In the beginning many were hesitant to put their mark on the mural so I set up a table with chalk, a bucket of water, and a sponge so I could demonstrate to guests that the chalk would indeed wash off.


Once a few people started drawing it was hard to keep guests away and at the end of the night there were all sorts of chalk surprises to be found within the Katazome mural. My favourite was this sketch of a muscle man who I couldn’t but help think looks like our coworker Nick.

photo 1[7]

The next day I got to take a hose to the wall and wash away all the chalk, leaving behind only my original painting. A clean slate, ready to be drawn on once again. Time to have another party!




Hello Birdie!

Thursday, May 28th, 2015

Here’s a great idea for making a mobile for a baby’s room … study … or … anywhere. Using Chiyogami paper we folded these birds from the Robin pattern in Florence Sakade’s book ORIGAMI – JAPANESE PAPER FOLDING.

bird 1

Using waxed linen thread we strung the birds together.

bird 2

Not wanting to perform a “balancing act” we simply hung the winged ones from a KIKKERLAND PHOTO MOBLIE.

bird 3

Tweet Tweet!

bird 4



Origami Flower Card

Sunday, April 26th, 2015

Spring is here, and I thought I would fold some Origami flowers. I found a variety of origami flower inspiration in the book, “Origami Flowers” by Kazuo Kobayashi.

For this project I used the Morning Glory instructions found on page 23. It was a fairly simple flower to fold.


After I had folded a variety of Morning Glory flower sizes, I arranged and pasted them on a card, made of Nepalese paper.


This card was super fun and easy to make. I’m going to send it to my mom for Mother’s Day. :)




Washi Tape Keyboard

Wednesday, March 4th, 2015

A few months ago when thinking about what else I could possibly cover with washi tape next, it occured to me…laptop keyboard!

Here’s how it turned out:

Basically I chose my tapes, then made a quick template for the key sizes and went to it! I’d suggest choosing tapes that are either a lighter colour or have some white spaces (like the plus sign tape above) so that you’re still able to see which keys are which. The navy with polka dots that I chose is a bit dark, but if I put my keyboard backlight all the way up I can still figure out what’s what.

Here are some fun colour and pattern combos to try out on your own keyboard!

Fun Florals


Bright and geometric!

And last but not least…travel/airmail themed!

So go ahead and try it for yourself! We have these tapes, plus many many more in the store, and we frequently get new ones. I’m happy to report that after about 5 months of use, my keyboard makeover is still holding up quite well.

Happy taping!



DIY Bunting

Tuesday, March 3rd, 2015

Bunting is a classic party decoration and best of all, you can keep it up  all year round!


For this project I used Italian Decorative Papers, which come in 26 different and amazing patterns!

You will also need the following supplies:

-cutting mat

-utility knife


-ribbon punch

– Italian Decorative Paper

– flag template (instructions found on pages 16-21 of the Paper & Craft book by Chronicle Books).




This is an easy way to personalize your party decor and really fun to make. I made this in a snap! Check it out! :)



I love the way all the Italian Decorative paper patterns work together! Happy DIY crafting!