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Craft supplies, Hobbies & Collectibles

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Are You Addicted to Scrapbooking But Wish It Wasn't So Expensive?
An increasingly popular alternative to traditional paper scrapbooking is digital scrapbooking. Digital scrapbooking can be a much more affordable option than buying traditional supplies and tools. Plus, with digital scrapbooking, you can really streamline the process of scrapbooking by eliminating lengthy set up and clean up efforts, leaving more time for actually working on your pages. Scrapbooking is a fantastic hobby! It's fun and relaxing, plus you're creating a record of your family's memories for years to come. The only downsides are that it can quickly get very expensive, and of course it takes a lot of time to do!
There's no doubt about it. Traditional paper scrapbooking is expensive. All those papers, albums and embellishments really add up! You could easily be spending hundreds or even thousands on your hobby. Plus, there's this little thing called "time". We never have enough of it! Just getting out your scrapbook supplies and organizing your desk can really zap your creativity!
The first thing you'll need to do is get yourself a digital scrapbooking software program. It'll cost you less than what you're used to spending on just a handful of paper scrapbooking tools and supplies. And the best news is that it will come with thousands of reusable digital embellishments, papers, backgrounds, and shapes that you can combine with your photos to make beautiful scrapbooking pages.
You want to pick a digital scrapbook program that has a good balance between ease of use and advanced features. You want something that you can easily get started with, but then grow into the advanced features as you get more confident. There are a number of different software choices out there, and they're definitely not all the same. I'd suggest that you search for scrapbooking software that has a free trial version for download on their website. It's always best to try before you buy!
The scrapbooking software you choose should come with an intuitive interface. You should be able to add, resize, rotate, and move everything you see on your page - just like you're working with scissors and paper. There should also be options to add fancy bendable text to your pages, adjust the colors of your embellishments and photos, and even apply image effects and shadows.
The biggest concern that most traditional paper scrapbookers have with digital scrapbooking, is that the results won't be as personal or "real" as a regular paper scrapbook. However, the truth is that the best digital scrapbooking software programs let you output your pages in a variety of digital formats, plus a variety of print formats!
In fact, digital scrapbooking is a great way to make a real, physical keepsake. With a few mouse-clicks, you can make high-quality prints of your scrapbook pages on your home printer. You can even create attractive photo albums and hardbound photobooks. Plus, unlike with traditional paper scrapbooking, you can share your digital scrapbook pages as images through email, or on websites and blogs. You can even make multimedia slideshows and movies. Your sharing options are greatly increased by switching to digital scrapbooking. So, why not give digital scrapbooking a try? You'll still get the creative feel and satisfying results of traditional paper scrapbooking, plus all the benefits of a digital scrapbooking: affordability, ease of use, and lots of ways to share your memories with friends and family.

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Woodturning - What Can You Make With A Wood Lathe?
Woodworkers in particular and craftspeople in general tend to look at a wooden bowl or platter and think that it would be intriguing to make one, but realize that a wood lathe is generally needed for the task and a lathe can be one more expensive tool to bring into the workshop just for a bowl or a platter. The question then arises as to not only what can you make with a lathe but also what else can you make with a wood lathe? The answers are legion but easily found.
If you look at the wood turner's lathe as the tool of the particular craftsperson, a simple look around the shop and home provides many solutions. Many of today's pots and pans are lined with Teflon or some other non-stick surface that forbids the use of metal utensils. Wood turners can make spatulas, potato mashers and other kitchen ware suitable for use with the modern materials.
For those who like to buy things like pickles, olives or such in large jars, the jars look useful but not pretty. A few minutes on the wood lathe produces a fitting that a jar lid will glue into and now the jar becomes a canister with a decorative lid. Simple but elegant.
This of course precludes the obvious items in the kitchen that were the mainstay of the wood turner in the preindustrial villages and cities of Europe and the East. Salt and pepper shakers, pepper mills, bowls, boxes, candle sticks and on and on. Every village had a turner and not just for platters.
In the work shop there is the need for file handles and other tools handles. Files in particular are sold these days either unhandled and with a dangerous pointed tang that far too many woodworkers have driven into their hands, or with too small handles that make the tool unbalanced and awkward to use. A few minutes at the wood lathe with a piece of scrap wood and the problem is solved. Even those tools that are sold with handles may be improved or personalized with a more comfortable and efficient handle.
Many tools such as scratch awls and mallets are easily made on the woodturning lathe and are readily customized to suit the woodworker's hands. In addition they make wonderful gifts for the other woodworkers around.
A woodworker used to making flat items will also find inspiration in the wood lathe. It has for thousands of years been the tool for making round legs for tables and all sorts of parts for chairs. Simple railings for stairwells become elegant with rounded and beaded newels and banisters from the hands of the craftsperson.
If it is round it can come from the wood lathe and today's artisans are taking that to great lengths. While we can see incredible items already from the lathe, the future will continue to press the boundaries of what comes from this simple but marvellous tool.
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BlueMoon Scrapbooking
Blue Moon Scrapbooking
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The Many Qualities Of Leather
There are many different types of leather products that a person can purchase. The following list outlines some of the most fashionable leather products that a person can purchase.
1) Leather Shoes
2) Leather Boots
3) Leather Gloves
4) Leather Hats
5) Leather coats
6) Leather handbags
7) Leather tool bags
8) Leather Vests
9) Leather Pants
Numerous products that can be purchased are created by leather. For ever item that you see on an exacting list of leather products, there are many more unique that can be purchased. Leather is a unique product that normally always has a superior standard when it comes to material that it is created out of. Many people seek out leather for a variety of reasons. Many of those reasons have to do with the overall uniqueness of leather.
One of the many characteristics of leather is its durability. Leather is known to last for a very long time. This is why so many people pay the price that they do for leather products. The fact that the product will last a remarkably long time makes the price that is paid for the product worth every dollar in the end.
Health is a major stimulus for People who are highly sensitive to allergies and have breathing difficulties often obtain leather products. Leather is a material that can be cleaned rather easily and does not collect and hold dust and other harmful allergens. This makes it a perfect material for people who are susceptible to these types of things.
Leather offers a range of styles that can be suitable for any personality. This is one particular type of material that never loses its appeal. In addition to this, leather can be purchased in order to suit the unique style and personality of any individual. This is one of the characteristics of leather that make its appeal so one of its kind and well-liked. Many people do not mind paying the price for distinctive leather products. These types of products allow them to convey who they are, and what they like.
When a person buys leather products, they often find that the characteristic of leather of being easily maintained is extremely appealing. Leather can be conditioned, softened, cleaned, and so on. This makes leather a very attractive material. In addition to being easily maintained, if you get bored with the look of your leather, you can also dye it and paint it. Leather is an exceptionally easy product to use to change with your personality and unique style.
As you can see, leather is pleasing to many people because of the fact that it has unique characteristics that make it a very useful type of material. Buy your leather products in self-confidence that they will provide you with value, comfort, durability, and fashion.

Dark Figures

Action Figures, collectibles & Toys

Making jewellery and accessories with silver clay
Silver metal clay allows for an array of jewellery designs that are not possible with traditional silver-smithing techniques. Silver metal clay is made of pure silver molecules mixed with water and organic binders to form a clay. Once fired the binders burn away to leave almost pure silver, which can make stunning pieces for you to share.
You can make almost anything with precious metal clay, with silver items looking particularly high quality. You can make anything from delicate bracelets to chunky rings. Silver clay allows you to make pieces for both men and women and looks great with any stone, gem or bead. There are varying degrees of difficulty, so you can create something yourself or follow an instruction guide depending on how easy or hard you want your piece to be.
You can shape and use metal clay best on a slick, smooth surface in the same way ceramic clay is used. It can be pressed into moulds, textured using special plates or tools, made into three-dimensional work, or flat pieces. Silver metal clay can even be purchased in a paper form, which allows items, such as origami, to be made into solid pieces of silver. You don't even need specialist tools when it comes to working with silver clay. Most use things from around the house to create shapes and imprint patterns onto the clay and some say using two stacks of playing cards a few inches apart on a flat sheet of plastic and rolling a piece of clay over can help you create a smooth and flat strip. There are, of course, more professional tools that you can buy for those who are truly skilled and have a lot of experience working with silver clay.
Be sure to let your clay air dry properly before firing. This will usually take overnight to be completely dry. Then you can fire your item. You can use a specialist oven or toaster oven or you could even use a hairdryer but this may take longer. Silver metal clay will come with instructions on basic handling and proper firing temperatures. And firing techniques may also vary depending on the inclusion of other materials, such as gemstones.
Once your work is done firing it will appear to be white. Polishing it with a wire brush will bring out the silver colour and a high polish can also be achieved. Beautiful colours can also be produced on the silver by using liver of sulphur at various temperatures for differing lengths of time. Try experimenting with your own finishes to find out what works best and what you like most.
A high shine on the silver makes it look elegant and expensive but a more matte finish looks better when created jewellery for men and they tend to prefer jewellery that is less flashy. So now you can assemble your jewellery. Whether you create items just for yourself or as gifts for friends and family, you can be sure they will love the fact that you have taken time and effort to design and make something especially for them.
Lots of keen jewellery makers also sell a lot of their products, by having their own market stalls and websites. So you never know, something you make today could lead to a profitable business further down the line.

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What Makes Collectibles Worth Collecting? Tips for Collectors
What makes a collectible worth collecting? To answer that question one must first contemplate why they are collecting something.
Is it a monetary investment?
Is it a hobby?
Is it to satisfy an emotional need?
For our purposes we are only going to consider monetary investments. If you are collecting as a hobby, or to satisfy an emotional need (such as recalling your childhood), price is not much of an issue. Whether a collectible increases or decreases in value is not your concern.
Monetary Investments
Usually, when the subject comes about whether an item should be collected, money is involved. The bottom line is simple: will investing in the collectible create a positive return on the investment? More particularly, will the return on the collectible exceed the return that could have been obtained with another type of investment?
For example. If you invest one thousand dollars in collectibles and can sell them for fifteen hundreds dollars in ten years, you have a five hundred dollar profit. Over ten years that is fifty dollars per year. Based on a one thousand dollar initial investment, the return each year is five percent.
Five percent is probably better than putting your money in the bank and seeing what interest the bank pays. Five percent is also probably less than what an investment in the stock market is expected to return.
On the other hand, you know what return you will receive via interest because it is a set value.
With a collectible the future is unknown. You do not know your investments will increase by a certain amount. The collectibles could lose value. They could also significantly appreciate.
To reduce this uncertainty you can look at historical prices to evaluate what is happening with a collectible and realistically expect that to continue in the future.
Factors Affecting Price Changes
Factors which influence whether the value of a collectible increases or decreases over time include:
• The original price of each item
• How many different items are available to collect?
• How rare or common each item is. (Production run)
• How many other people seek to acquire the same items?
• Is the item trendy?
• Are the items easy to counterfeit?
Each of these factors are important. But I view actual price and sales information as the bottom line which accounts for these factors, plus any other factors you have not considered.
In other words, the market determines value and the market is never wrong.
Comparing Initial Retail/Buy Back Spreads Versus Long-Term Value
Another important issue often overlooked by novice collectible investors is the difference in value after the first sale and the change in value over time.
Let me explain.
Assume a new collectible sells for retail at one hundred dollars. On the after market, such as on eBay, it can be sold for eighty dollars. That is a common profit spread for retailers. It is like buying a new car and then turning around and selling it. Once you drive the car off the lot there is often an immediate loss in value.
Short-sided investors only consider the new price versus the immediate buy-back price.
But consider this: if you buy the collectible on the after market for eighty dollars that is often your price floor. Unless the market for a collectible evaporates, as may happen for trendy items, or products with too much quantity, you do not expect value to keep decreasing each year.
Rather, once a production run has ended and rarity established, every year should see a steady erosion in how many of the item are available because some are lost, destroyed, or hoarded. There is also a steady erosion in quality as some excellent quality items become used and their quality lessens. Thus, supply steadily decreases over time.
The flip side is, usually, demand increases over time because with population growth there are simply more collectors.
Bottom Line
My suggestion when evaluating a collectible is, if possible, to get a price history. The market creates prices.
If prices decrease over time the item is probably not a wise investment.
If prices increase over time then you can evaluate how much they are increasing and whether it is worth your investment.
While that is easily stated, in practice the issue is much more difficult because reliable price histories of sales over time are so difficult to obtain. In many cases, it may be impossible.
Fortunately, the Internet has made that task easier, and so have after markets such as eBay where you can continually monitor prices to see which way they are moving.
If you want to make money from collectibles, make sure you arm yourself with as much data as possible so you can make a wise decision.
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Silly Kids Crafts Your Children Will Love, But Won't Make a Big Mess
You need ideas for silly and fun kids crafts for your children but you don't want them to make a big mess - what do you do? You could give them a box of colors and a coloring book or grab a craft idea from this list of 20 non messy sometimes silly kids crafts.
Mess free can mean something different to each mom. For me it means no paints, no small tiny pieces of paper, no liquids, and no permanent markers.
For others it is no beads, no crayons, nothing sticky and absolutely nothing that is used as a projectile object or a weapon against a sibling.
Yarn Crafts Ideas for Children
The only supplies needed for these crafts are a ball of yarn and a pair of scissors. You can make a simple pom-pom using a fork, a piece of cardboard, or invest in a pom-pom maker for a kid friendly and stress less craft.
1. Yarn pom-pom
2. Finger Knit Bracelet (Necklace)
Mess Free Paper Crafts
Paper crafts can go either two ways - simple and entertaining or frustrating and messy.
3. Hands Across the World Garland - simply trace the child's hand, cut out, and string up to create a bunting
4. Paper Folding - check out some origami videos on YouTube for quick and easy folds like a bouncing frog, or ninja star
5. Zentangle - this craft is so simple even adults can do it. Using square pieces of paper, a pen or pencil, add lines, circles and other shapes to create a one-of-a-kind piece of art
6. Mustache - print out a mustache and hold it up to your face. For added silly fun, take photos.
7. Paper bag friends (fish, pirate, etc stuffed with plastic or blow up bag)
8. Super Hero Finger Puppet - take a piece of paper and make a little cape, tape it to your child's finger for an instant super hero
9. Paper Flowers - draw flowers and cut them out
Silly Crafts to Make Your Children Smile
10. Toilet Roll Binoculars I Spy - make a pair of binoculars and play the game "I Spy"
11. Sunglasses (googly eyes) - take a pair of dollar store glasses and glue some googly eyes to the shades for instant silly glasses
12. Add a Smile - draw a silly smiley face to a piece of paper or cardboard add a Popsicle stick and have a photo shoot with all your silly faces.
Pipe Cleaner Crafts for Children
13. Butterfly - you need a coffee filter and a pipe cleaner. Add the pipe cleaner to the middle of the filter and shape into a butterfly
14. Pipe Cleaner Bracelets, Bookmarks and/or Wands - you'll need beads and pipe cleaner. Knot one end, add your beads, and knot the other end. For a wand, shape one end (star or heart) add your beads, and knot the end.
Slightly Mess Free Sticker Crafts
15. Sticker Landscape Art - have your child draw a background, print one out or cut out a scene from a magazine. Just add stickers.
16. Duct Tape - colored and decorative duct tape and some paper is all you need
17. Sticker Books - fold a piece of 8 ½" x 11" paper in four and cut. Staple one side. Make a cover and then add stickers to each page.
Recycled Cardboard Crafts
18. Bookmarks - use old cracker boxes or cereal boxes to cut bookmarks out. Let your child decorate them and add a ribbon to the top
19. Cardboard finger puppet - with an old cereal box cut out a rectangle with two finger holes in the bottom. Let your child draw his own little friend and play.
20. Photographer (cardboard) - cut out a camera and go on a photo shoot
Crafts with children don't have to messy. Take what you all ready do and make clean versions. Given simple supplies children naturally use their imagination to make their own silly fun.
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Making Silver Jewellery
For this basic project, the craftsman will require a sterling silver sheet, a scribe, a jewellerandrsquo;s saw and blades, a bench peg, a jewellerandrsquo;s drill and access to a buffing machine. Once the basic piece has been made, it can, be embellished with silver wire or silver findings. The sterling silver sheet, if bought from a reputable jewellery supplierandrsquo;s will already have been annealed to maximise its softness and malleability. Silver sheet can be bought in a variety of thicknesses and andlsquo;hardnessandrsquo;; this will depend on your personal taste and what you feel comfortable working with. The first stage is to put your design onto the silver sheet. This can be done by simply drawing the design on paper and fixing it to the silver sheet using scotch tape. Should duplicates be made, one of the pieces can be kept as a template and the scribe used to mark the design into the silver sheet.
You are now ready to cut out the design.
Depending on its intricacy, you may want to create a cutting point with the drill; a small drill bit can be used to create a hole in the silver sheet to facilitate cutting. When you are ready to begin, start with a slightly forward tilt to the saw blade and use light and easy strokes. The onus is not on speed at this stage; it is more important that the strokes are consistently even and long. Due to the very thin blade, the saw will cut around very tight corners, as long as the strokes are consistent. You may wish to use the bench peg at this stage.
Once the design is free from the silver sheet, the jewellerandrsquo;s drill is used again to drill a hole for the ear-wires. This can be bought as silver findings or, alternatively, they can be created from silver wire and manipulated using jewellerandrsquo;s pliers. The final stage is to polish the piece, using a buffing machine and gradations of polish to achieve the desired effect. The first polish is simply designed to remove scratches and each subsequent polish improves the lustre and the quality of the piece.
Although a relatively simple project, creating silver jewellery can become as complicated as you like, dependant on the intricacy of the design and the further embellishments to be included, such as stones, silver findings or added designs using silver wire.

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The New World Of Sewing
During primitive times, survival depended on sewing skills. Keeping warm and sheltering families depended on sewing. Women did much of the sewing, but sewing skills were everyones concern. Sewing skills were passed from parent to child. These were survival skills. It was required for making clothes, tents, and blankets. Shelter, bodily protection, warmth, life, and survival relied on sewing.
During ancient times, plant vines, strips of bark, strips of animal hides, and numerous other natural materials were used as thread. Wood, bone, and early metal needles were used in often crude sewing efforts. Hides of many kinds were used much like we use fabrics today. Until 1846, virtually all sewing was done by hand. With the invention of the sewing machine by Elias Howe, and the broader industrial revolution, sewing became mechanized. Suddenly, an operator with the new sewing machine was able to produce finished projects equal to the five of the fastest hand sewers. Unlike the hand sewer, the new sewing machine is capable of working hour after hour, never growing tired. Sewing machines soon appeared in every textile factory and home. The sewing machine became a necessity. Sewing skills became essential. Economic survival depended on sewing. Clothing construction and household necessities could now be produced at home quicker and better then every before. In recent years, things have changed. Most public schools have reduced or phased out sewing instruction. Women now face huge challenges at home and in the workplace. Most women find themselves having to balance a multitude of family pressures. The rise of sports for girls, has in many ways replaced opportunities to learn how to sew. The days when girls learned to sew from mother and grandmother, are rapidly fading away. The result is a fading art. Sewing and quilting could become lost arts.
Today, however, there is a huge revival taking place in sewing and quilting interest. The tide appears to be turning. More people sew and quilt today than for many years. The workhorse sewing machine and the view of sewing have changed. Sewing is no longer the mundane work tool. Instead, users enjoy sewing as a tool of pleasure and relaxation. Sewers are passionate about sewing.
Today, sewing has changed. Now sewing is fun, easy, relaxing, thrilling, creative self expression. Now sewing is easier than ever before. The tools of sewing make sewing more accurate, easier, more productive, and much more satisfying. Modern sewing machines have features that take the work out of sewing. The design of sewing machines takes advantage of the most advanced computer technologies available. Machines have hundreds and hundred of dynamic stitches, built in alphabets, needle up/needle down, easy reverse, start/stop and slide speed control, powerful pulse DC motors, automatic threading, automatic tensions, automatic thread trimmers, even elaborate machine embroidery.
The resurgence of sewing in the modern era is mind boggling. If someone had suggested in 1900 that a sewing machine like Berninas new 830 would cost $12,000, they could not have imagined it. Yet, in spite of the price tag, our stores have already sold half a dozen, and the machine has just been released. The passion of the modern sewer far exceeds the have-to mentality of ages past. Today people sew because they want to. The demand for sewing instruction has caused the creation of thousands of sewing classes, clubs, and sharing groups. Many public and private schools are to teaching sewing again.
Finding sewing resources is usually pretty easy because there are so many people who love to sew and quilt. If you are unsure how to find them, or are interested in learning more about sewing or quilting; begin your search now.
Discover the world of sewing in your neighborhood. Look in the yellow pages under sewing, quilt shops, or sewing machine dealers. Investigate the public library, recreation centers, or school programs. Contact your local churches. Read sewing books. Take a sewing ecourse. Take a class on sewing or quilting. Get involved. Surround yourself with others whole love to sew and quilt. Share your passion and your projects. Be part of the modern sewing adventure.

Historic Rail
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Do You Know The Creative Hobbies?
Hobby is the leisure time that we regularly spend after daily works like attending office, cooking, teaching, studying, etc. It's a method of diversion from the monotony of routine. Pastime is the other name of the hobby. It can happen that the activity which is a pastime for one person can be a job to another person. For example, swimming a pastime for John is a Profession for Bush. Everybody should have a pastime in their daily schedule; because, this is the only way to relax, refresh and recharge the mind and body. Hobbies can be grouped under two heads a) Creative type and b) Entertainment type. The first category employs the creative skill to refresh and produces value in life. The latter category aims at pleasure as a tool to recharge a person. The most common hobbies of creative nature are discussed here.
This helps to memorize and enjoy the past events and moments of life after several years. One can share the photos through the social media and public forums. Digital cameras enable even the beginners to shoot like a professional. The only qualification required is the admiration of things around oneself. There are people who earn money from this hobby.
Each one of us has the creativity within us. This hidden power can be explored to pen poetry by conscious attempts at it. Observations and expressions form the essence of any poetry. Reading the verses of great poets also inspires and kindles thought process. Poems can be published online to share views and gain recognition.
As this involves patience and passion, very few people pursue this hobby. However, great works of painting bring fame and name. Painting can be in any media like canvas, compact disc, metallic sheets, glass, etc.
Anything you want to share can be done here by posting pictures, videos, snippets, articles, etc. There are many user-friendly websites providing free space and templates to start with. Of course, the netizens alone can have this hobby. The blogs with the quality contents attract more visitors. The blog authors can earn money by posting the ads of online and offline businesses.
Affiliate marketing: By merely marketing the products and services of businesses as a hobby, a person can generate income. This can be done through online and offline modes; the first requires least investment and knowledge about the Internet. The second type involves higher investment and physical handling of the merchandise.
Social service:
Free coaching, Traffic regulation, Helping the Old people, Street-cleaning, etc. are some of the social activities that can be adopted as hobbies. Rendering service to the society yields multiple gains: it provides satisfaction, confidence, growth, welfare and peace. This kind of hobby becomes effective when carried out by joining hands with the like-minded people such as friends and office colleagues.
Undertaking work from an agency or business firm has become a hobby nowadays. Journalism, Copy-writing, Data collection, Data entry, Software designs, Supplying Goods, Consultancy and photography are some examples of this hobby. Such freelancing can be free of cost or for a fee.
The Internet provides endless opportunities to both; spend the time and earn a dime. Age is not a bar. Spirit and curiosity to learn are vital for making a hobby as productive and satisfying.
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How To Get The Most Out Of Your Loom Bands
Loom bands happen to be a sort of craft that a lot of individuals take pleasure in working with because there is so much that you'll be able to do with them. While the possibilities tend to be limitless, lots of people are certainly not certain where to begin to make this kind of art project as great as it can be. There happen to be a few suggestions that you should follow to help you get the most out of your bands.
For starters, understand that some other individuals have come up with a large number of good ways to utilize these rubber bands to help to make objects, necklaces, bracelets, ornaments, plus much more with these loom bands. This is why you should do some searching online for patterns or projects. If you want something simple, look for patterns for children and can be done without a loom. If you are experienced, try to look for the harder ones.
These types of patterns will certainly give you something to work towards. Some even tell you exactly how to make the craft step by step. Certainly one of the very best spots to use is definitely YouTube. Right here you will find a large number of videos that can show you ways to create the specific project of your choosing. Seeing somebody work with the bands makes the process so much simpler.
Furthermore start out utilizing a number of loom bands so that your art projects will look even better. For example, solid color, tie dye, white dot or perhaps glow in the dark may entirely transform a design. It could look one way during the day and different in the dark. Switching up the colors can make a big difference.
Create relevant patterns. If your beloved sports team is in the playoffs, create projects using their colors. You could match your project with the colors of the clothing you are wearing. If it is near the holidays, create projects that go along with the holiday that you observe. Loom band patterns that usually are relevant could make them more fun.
Once you take time to see precisely what could be accomplished with these tiny bands, you won't ever use up all your ideas. Do the research so that you will always have a large number of amazing projects and patterns and save them for a loom library to help to make along with your loom bands.
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Woodturning - The Art of Crafting Wood
'Woodturning' or 'woodworking' is an art form that has a long history.
Basically, woodturning involves the use of a lathe for creating objects out of wood. The lathe is a basic form of machinery by the operation of which the wood is slowly shaped into different forms. The wood remains stationery; the lathe and its components give designs and intricate patterns to the wood.
The two distinct methods of woodturning are:
• Faceplate turning
• Spindle turning
Faceplate turning is the method when the wood grains run vertical to the lathe rotation. Items of wood such as bowls, mats and platters etc. are made this way.
Spindle turning is the process where the grains of wood and the lathe bed are in the same direction. Chair and table legs are usually made of this type of woodturning method.
There is a long history behind woodturning, going as far back as 13th century BC. The Egyptian civilization was the first to stumble upon woodturning using a workable lathe. This earliest model needed two persons to operate the lathe. While the first person manned the cutting tool to give the wood its shape, the second person used a rope to provide a consistent turning action which was the power behind the working of the lathe.
The Romans made their own perfections on this basic design with the addition of a turning bow to the lathe. Woodturning became a common skill with more demand for wooden pieces, ancient furniture designs and continued to be popular even after the decline of the Roman Empire. More and more enhancements to the basic lathe came from the British, French and Germans; the introduction of a pedal to maintain turning action revolutionized the lathe and it could be operated by a single person using both hands to shape and design the wood. Even today, this method referred to as the 'spring pole lathe' is in use by seasoned artisans to make exquisite pieces compared to mass production of objects.
Many of the common products used today are made by simple lathes. Baseball bats, chess pieces, pool cues and pepper mills are some of them. For mass production of items, woodturning machinery has come into existence where the machinery is aided with computer technology to produce designs and shapes quickly whereas an artisan may spend many hours or even days finely cutting and shaping an object.
The single advantage of woodturning machinery is that it can produce items at a lesser cost; a hand-crafted object using traditional woodturning method is more expensive.
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The Dangers of Wax Candles
Everyone enjoys a candle, right? Well, most of the time anyway. I used to go to the store, purchase what I thought was a high quality candle that had beauty and smelled great. Easy task if you asked me. I did this for years, no problems at all, that is until I learned a few things about wax candles. I began a career in the insurance business and my job entailed me to do inspections of rooms of a house. I noticed in many homes that either their curtains or walls were a little discolored and some were simply BLACK. I began to inquire and the more investigating I did, the more I found out that it was the wax candle that was the problem. I began to do a lot of investigating, when I was not on the job of course, but in a different way on a different subject, CANDLES!! That is how my journey began and I want to share it with you, so you can hopefully benefit as I have.
I noticed that when I would ask why the black smoke was on the wall, I always got the same answer; oh, that is where mom puts her candles to burn. I then wanted to see if the smoke was able to be wiped away, and to some degree, it was. I then became concerned, not only for the homeowners due to the smoke and the type of wax that was used, but mostly because I learned that the wax and smoke was also dangerous if burned too long in a closed room.
I then found another problem with wax candles, they tunnel. Yes, I said they tunnel, meaning that if you burn a candle for a short time which is less than enough time to allow it to burn completely to the edge of the glass jar, if it is in a glass jar, and you blow out the flame; that wax will never again in that particular jar melt to the edge of the jar, never. You see, just like the old phone batteries, candles also have a memory!! Due to the wax becoming cold prior to melting to the edge, the wax has something in it that simply does not allow it to EVER melt past the last melting point during its last lighting. That is a problem.
Another problem that I learned about wax candles that I did not particularly appreciate was that they became ugly. So ugly that I never would burn them to the bottom because I did not like the black smoke look inside of the jar, so, out the door they went to be recycled into something hopefully more productive.
Now, I was forever on this new mission to find a better candle, but what could it be? I mean, candles had been around for ever, or at least as long as I knew about. Well, I thought, maybe even candles can be made better, after all, other things have been improved upon that had a long history.
I finally changed and went to oil candles, that is what I have found to be the answer. You can make your own oil candle and there are certainly people who make them to sell, but the point is that whatever candle you purchase and choose to use, make sure you use caution and be responsible and burn it safely. With me being in the insurance business, I have seen many candles be the cause of a fire that could have been avoided.
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Few Of The Top Quality Collector figures
Unique figures, images and even characters from the motion picture or a theme are usually taken out from a distinct layout and also they may be commonly termed for collectors. Materials applied in building a collector figure are usually porcelain, clay and wood in the older times. The least complicated way is by utilizing a raw material known as PVC considering the selection of products that PVC can produce.
One of the extensively acknowledged collector figures is Swarovski Crystals. Swarovski has been around since 1895. As a consequence of its really interesting good quality, it is identified as the world leader in collectible crystal figurines and crystal jewelry. It all started off in the year 1889 when Walter Scott Lenox made Lenox Lotus Wares. He opened up a smaller craft work studio and had its whole range of distinctive art wares. Exclusive retail stores that specify in high standard pottery are allowed to carry the Lenox line.
Almost certainly the most liked could be the precious moments. The teardrop-eyed sculptures of young kids are actually alluring for young children as well as adults. By portraying the token of love, generosity, faith and joy, collectors all across the world take superb joy in acquiring a precious moments series. This would be an exceptional present. Your family as well as loved ones would undoubtedly value your own touching gift.
Luxury and also design are usually two essential aspects a Lladro collectible figure is defined. The creation started out in th city of Almacera, Spain when three Lladro brothers started developing porcelain figurines that afterwards started to be a symbol of reputation. Each and every time anyone buy a lladro figurine, it's often accompanied with an insurance coverage against breakages. Genuinely, Lladro values its genuineness.
Lastly, the styles of Hummel collector figures has been brought about by a nun, Maria Innocentia Hummel which has been put together from her drawings and also paintings of little children that depict youth and innocence regardless of what your selection is. Collector Figures are generally best for somebody who's venturing for a distinct form of collection. They can be a new means of pleasure and also an easy entry for relaxation and recreation.

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A Collection Of Diecast Model Cars
Different are people and different are their hobbies. Each one of us has a particular favorite thing that we like to do in our spare time. You can also say that people depict their love for certain things by converting them to hobbies. As I mentioned, hobbies vary with people. Where some people like gardening, some love to sing, some like to rebuild cars & computers, and some love to draw. Generally, hobbies depend upon the interest that the person has; and bring joy, information, relaxation and happiness. Moreover, hobbies can be categorized into multiple kinds, such as indoor, outdoor, collection, competition and observation hobbies.
In this article, I am going to shed light on a collection hobby that is extremely famous. Collection of die-cast replicas is another hobby that has gained popularity in past few years. Remember the good old days, when you used to get engrossed in playing with toy cars and dream of owning them one day. However, after growing up you could not get each and every car that you once desired but, with miniature die-cast cars you can turn your dream into reality, for sure. Nowadays, die-cast cars are available in a gigantic compilation of specifications and features, to fulfill the diversified requirements of die-cast car lovers.
As far as the size of die-cast cars is concerned, the range of die-cast cars can go as small as 1:148 & 1:87, and as large as 1:12 and 1:18. But, go for the 1:64 scale as it is one of the most popular and traditional scales, of all times. Especially, if you are a new collector then start with 1:64 scale because it is easily available, occupies less space, budget-friendly and easy to sell & trade. Purchase a scale size that suits your interest and make sure that you don't have to compromise at any end.
Hunt online stores to buy vintage plastic model cars for sale, so that you get your desired model at lesser price. Various websites offer a broad assemblage of diecast model cars for sale online, which are manufactured using premium quality material so that the quality is never compromised upon. Based on your wishes, you can purchase die-cast cars in several features & specifications and make your collection even more interesting. Furthermore, think of the space where you will store the collection. It is very important to plan everything, because if you are initiating die-cast car collection, it will continue lifelong.

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Candle Making - The Importance Of Temperature
Candle making is very varied and you can make many different kinds of candles. The different candle making techniques you use will depend on the type of candle you are making. The most important part of making candle is getting the temperature of each step correctly. The temperature of the candle mold, the room temperature and the temperature of the wax are all crucial.
The pouring temperature is critical depending on the material you are using for the candles. You can use natural waxes, paraffin, gel or other materials. They all will come with a recommended pouring temperature and this should be followed when making candles. Some waxes such as natural waxes pour better at lower temperatures while others will need higher temperatures.
Controlling the room temperature is important as you can do candle making at any time of the year. If you are in a room that is humid and warm then you will have a different pouring temperature then a room that is damp and cold. You will find that you will get many different results depending on the room temperature. If your room is cool then you may need to heat the wax to a higher temperature then when you make candles in the summer.
The temperature of the candle molds you are using is also important. Most molds should be pre-heated in order to get rid of any moisture. Moisture in the mold can cause air pockets and the moisture should be removed as much as possible. Dry heat is the best way to pre heat the molds and a heat lamp or heat gun is a good tool to use.
Dyes are also used to color candles. All dyes are made of the three primary colors of blue, red and yellow. You can combine these colors to make secondary colors and then you can create any type or shade of color you want. The main problem with using dyes is getting a consistent color throughout the entire candle. This is easier to achieve when making larger batches of candles as measuring the dye is much easier.
There are color blocks that can be used as dye as well as liquid dye. Liquid dyes tend to be favored as they provide more consistent color and are very easy to use. EVO makes dyes that are eco-friendly and perfect for vegetable waxes.
Pigment dyes produce a very rich and deep color for your candles but are only used when dipping candles. Powdered dyes are perfect for large batches as and are economical as you can achieve fantastic color with a small amount of powdered dye.

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8 Tips to Make Derailments on Your Model Railroad a Thing of the Past
For the beginner in the model railroading hobby there are a few problems that arise.
One of these problems are the trains derailing which can be very frustrating to the point that leads many beginners exiting the hobby. I know when I first started in the hobby I was plagued by derailments, to the point of almost giving up.
I dreamed of having a smooth running layout, and if you are reading this article then I know you do as well. The truth is it wasn't hard to achieve after a bit of attention to detail.
Here are 8 ways to make derailments a thing of the past on your own layout:
1. Check to make sure the track is laid down properly.
One of the most common reasons for trains derailing is poorly fitted track joints.
Take a second look at the joints in your track, they should feel level when running your fingers across them, with the gaps between them kept as small as possible. A good tip is to solder the track joints together as this prevents the rails from pulling apart with the vibrations of the trains running across them. After soldering the joints together take a small file or sandpaper and flatten the joint out for a level, smooth track.
Soldering the joints will also help with the conductivity of the electricity powering the trains as this establishes a better circuit for the current to pass through.
2. Ensure the gap (or gauge) between the rails is consistent throughout the track and especially at the track joints.
If the gauge isn't consistent thought the track then this can cause derailments. If the gauge is too narrow then the wheels will ride up the track and your train will jump off the track. The same goes if the gauge is too wide the wheel flanges can't span the track properly which results in too much sideways movement leading to a derailment.
You can correct the gauge of the rails by gently heating them up with a soldering iron and moving the track the desired direction, and allowing to cool off slowly. Care must be taken so you don't create more damage than there was. With a little bit of practice on an unused section of track you will get the hang of correcting the problem areas on your layout.
3. Ensure sharpness of the switch points while switching.
New switch points can have dull edges on the moveable section where it makes contact with the stock rails, which can grab the wheels and cause a derailment.
By using a small file you can smooth the transition between the rails for buttery smooth transitions at the switching points. Be sure to check the gauge at both positions of the switch as you did on the rail joints to ensure the gauge is correct.
4. Make sure the couplers on the cars and locos are smooth.
A coupler that isn't smooth can cause derailments, by the coupler snagging on rough edges. This is normally the case with new cars, due to the manufacturing process which can sometimes leave rough edges on the couplers.
To help the couplers move more freely with one another, clean off any of the rough edges that may be present on the couplers. This can be done using a small file or fine grit sandpaper. The trick here is to just remove the rough spots to make the couplers move more freely with one another.
After cleaning up the rough spots, be sure to adjust the couplers for proper centering and height. The manufactures will usually provide instructions on how to center the couplers properly.
5. Add weight to the freight cars.
Some freight cars are just too light resulting in the wheels not contacting the rails evenly. To correct this you can add a small amount of weight to the cars. Which will make them want to stay on the track better. This also helps the cars in tighter turns. Adding weight to the cars will also let the cars travel more smoothly over the track.
It is best to add the weight in the center, and as low as possible to the cars creating a lower center of gravity. This also helps top heavy cars stay on the track as well.
6. Wheel alignment can also be a possible cause for cars derailing.
Just like on an automobile if the wheels are not aligned properly, or if there are worn out parts on the carriage can result in the wheels wandering all over the place making your trains skip off the track.
Ensure that the wheels are the correct gauge (distance apart) and that there are no bent/ worn out parts in the carriages. If the pivot points on the carriages are not moving freely this can also cause derailments especially on turns. It is also important to make sure the carriages are not crabbing (crab steering/ working against each other) which can result on the flanges being pushed into the rails, making the wheels ride up and come off the track.
7. Lubrication:
Proper lubrication of the wheels and couplers are extremely important for a smooth running railroad layout. A small drop of oil can make a huge difference on a wheel or a coupler that's hanging up. If parts can't move freely where they need to then things lock up and cause problems. Those problems of course being your train derailing.
Make sure to not go overboard when oiling parts as it can get messy, as well as attract unnecessary dust. Not to mention it can also cause damage to paintwork as well.
8. Dust / debris on the track.
Not only does dust on the track hinder the conductivity of the power being delivered to your locomotive, it can also cause derailments. To avoid this problem clean the track regularly with a paper towel / cloth. You can also use a track cleaning car to clean the track while the trains are running around the layout.
When making scenery around your layout sometimes the glue can drip on the track if you don't mask it off prior to making the scenery. Small drops of glue can create bumps on the track which can derail the trains.
By following these 8 simple steps you can create a smooth running railroad without frustrating derailments. It all comes down to taking your time and setting things up properly, as well as doing regular upkeep on the cars, locomotives, and track.
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Essential Jewellery Making Tools for Beginners
Like any other craft, jewellery making has a list of essential tools that will make your hobby much more enjoyable and your results much more professional. For the beginner it can be confusing as the huge selection of tools available range from the basic to the specialist. However, there are certain jewellery making tools that should have a place in everyoneandrsquo;s studio.
The first thing to look at is your surroundings. Tools donandrsquo;t just include pliers and cutters - the definition also incorporates things such as adequate lighting, a suitable working area and good storage facilities. Ask any jewellery maker or craftsperson which is the most essential tool of all and they will all tell you the same thing: good lighting. Without adequate lighting you will find it harder to do fine work and you risk straining your eyes. If you have directional lighting make sure that it doesnandrsquo;t come from behind you, as you will end up casting your own shadow across your work, making it difficult to see fine details. Once you start making jewellery you will be surprised how quickly you start to accumulate equipment, so apart from having a good working area make sure you have plenty of storage facilities. Findings or bead storage boxes are ideal. Theyandrsquo;re strong and compartmentalised, meaning there are plenty of separate sections to keep findings and beads stored safely.
There are three basic types of pliers used for jewellery making; round nose, snipe nose and crimping pliers. Round nose pliers (also known as rosary pliers) have rounded jaws that taper to a point. They are used for bending wire and for making loops, coils and spirals. Snipe nose pliers are semi-round with the inside of the jaws being flat. They are used for bending and wrapping wire, making loops and opening and closing jump rings. Crimping pliers have specially notched jaws that are used to fold and crimp metal crimp beads.
Wire cutters, preferably flushing cutting, are essential for making clean, precise cuts on wire, beading wire, eyepins and headpins. It may be tempting to use a pair of ordinary wire cutters to try and save money, but jewellery wire cutters are designed specifically for use with the different types of wire used in jewellery making. A pair of good wire cutters is an investment that will keep their sharp cutting edge for far longer than a cheaper alternative.
Because you are using tools, safety must be a consideration. A good pair of safety glasses is a wise investment and although you wonandrsquo;t need them for simple projects such as stringing beads, cutting wire can produce small chips that can damage the eyes very easily. You will also need to consider other safety measures if you are using glues and adhesives, so ensure that your working area is well ventilated. If you are using any heat (such as kilns or gas burners) then ensure that your jewellery making equipment includes a heatproof surface to stand hot objects on.
Finding a good supplier is your next task. There are plenty of jewellery equipment suppliers, so the first thing is to find one that has a reputation not just for supplying the hobby market, but for supplying the professionals as well. You can be certain that the equipment they supply will be of the highest standard. It is a case of paying for quality, but the bare essentials such as the three basic pliers and a pair of wire cutters will give you a good starting point. From then you can add equipment as you go along, including magnifying work lights, speciality pliers, reamers and, of course, plenty of books on jewellery making!

Trophy Central

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True Model Ships
TrueModelShips - Model Ships and Nautical Decor
TrueModelShips only provides authentic, high-quality model
ships and nautical decor. We don’t provide kits; all model
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How to Make Soft Toys
Soft toys that you have made yourself to give to your children always seem to be an extra special gift with the investment of thought and care that it takes to create them.
Teddy bears have been around for over a hundred years. The name comes from the nickname of US President Theodore Roosevelt. When in November 1902 he went on a hunting trip, some of his party clubbed and tied a black bear to a tree. Roosevelt was invited to shoot the bear. He didn't want to, but asked someone else to put it out of its misery. The incident became a topic of a now famous political cartoon in the Washington Post and initiated the idea of making toy bears.
The idea obviously endured through the years but if you choose to make a bear or any other animal, the methods for toy construction are the same.
Always use washable fabric and stuffing for toy making. Fabric with a pile, this is usually fur or fleece, needs special treatment when cutting and sewing.
Toys don't have to be furry. They can be made from floral fabrics or vibrant-coloured felts. Just remember that they need to withstand wear and tear.
A beginner may want to start with a kit where ready-made pieces and instructions will be provided. Toy patterns too will have detailed instructions for you to follow.
It is very important that all parts should be child-safe, especially for a small child who will bite the toy as they have a habit of exploring their world with their mouth.
If you buy a kit, check that you have all the pieces and relate them to the instructions before your begin. Then keep them in the bag so that they don't get lost. Whether you use eyes fixed on with rings, or buttons you sew on they must be extremely secure so that they will not become a choking hazard.
These following tips should be useful whether you use a kit or a pattern with your own choice of fabric.
There are free patterns to be found on the Internet that you can download.
1. Pattern pieces will have an arrow on them. This is the direction the pile (fur) should lie towards. Make sure the pattern pieces are laid on the fabric correctly otherwise the fur on the finished item will not lie in the right direction. Lay pattern pieces on the wrong side of the fabric.
2. Push the tip of your scissors through the pile and cut the base fabric only. (Pieces in kits have sometimes been produced in such a way that the fur has been cut through at the same time as the base fabric. This is a shame because it has an effect on the finished product. )
3. Follow all instructions carefully step by step.
4. When you sew fur fabric, push the pile inside the seam with your needle as you work along it so that none of the fur will be sticking out on the inside of the toy - this will ensure that when you turn the toy right side out the seams won't show because they will be covered in fur.
5. When threading a needle from a reel put your needle on the first end and if you want to knot your thread, the knot should be at the end you have just cut.
6. Don't have the length of thread too long otherwise it will tangle and knot up.
7. Any part of the toy labelled 'gusset' is a piece of fabric that makes the sewn item three-dimensional. On a toy this is often the centre of the face above the nose.
8. Stuff through one side of the animal or doll from just under the arm. Start with the head then stuff the limbs before you start stuffing the body. A pencil can help you push the stuffing into the extremities. Stuff through the stomach of an animal on four legs. Use only small amounts of stuffing at a time otherwise it will lump up. Make sure the toy has plenty of stuffing in it.
9. To sew up the side or base of the toy after stuffing, use ladder stitch.
Traditionally teddies have a piece of good-quality ribbon tied around their necks. You can tie a gift to this ribbon such as a bottle of perfume or pair of earrings. Or you could use a necklace instead as an additional present for a girl.
If a teddy is for a little boy, you can make the teddy a scarf in the colours of the football team the boy supports.
Every toy you make will have its own personality.
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Kids Art and Craft Ideas
If you want to provide your kids a good learning experience with enjoyment at their early age, then arts and crafts are one of the best tasks to keep them engaged or entertained. Kids art and craft activities will help them to be creative or enhance their different natural abilities that could have a life changing impact on their career in the future.
There are thousands of untold art and craft ideas available for the kids of different ages, but you must choose ideas that are enjoyable as well as educational. Take some time from your busy schedule and participate in your kids craft projects to encourage their creative abilities. Here I am going to share some kids art and craft ideas that would be helpful for you to keep your kids busy.
1. Paper Snowflakes:
To perform this fun activity you only need white paper or scissor. Take the paper and fold it in half, again fold it in half until it formed as a triangle. Now cut a series of small shapes of the paper, then unfold these pieces of paper carefully and you will have a beautiful snowflake. To be more creative, kids can add glue or glitter on them.
2. Christmas wreaths:
You will be amazed that many craft ideas are inspired by nature so you can involve your kids to make natural wreaths. Collect leaves make a wreath, use gold and silver paint to decorate it. You can also make nut wreath. This is good change of commercial Christmas wreath; kids love this kind of craft projects that are made from their favorite eatables. This Nut wreath would also be a wonderful gift for any nut lover.
3. Homemade Piggy Bank:
Cover an old shoe box with construction paper of your kids favorite color. Make a small cut to put money in. Draw frog face around the cut. Take an egg carton and cut two cups, paint them and add googly eyes, then add them in the box with glue to make frog's eyes. Cut the paper and makes the legs of a frog and attach these legs to the box.
4. Recycled Cards:
This is a simple and Eco friendly Kids art and craft project. Simply cut message part of your used cards and allow your kids to glue them to make a new card. These kind of projects are good for preschoolers that they can enjoy and learn the importance of recycling.
5. Pasta Jewelry:
Take pasta in different shapes, 1 poster paint, paintbrush, yarn thread and needle. First of all decide what piece of jewelry do you want to make. Paint pasta shapes and let them dry, after the pasta is dry string it with needle and yarn, then tie the ends. Your pasta jewelry piece is ready now.
These are some of the simplest and cost-effective kids art and craft ideas that kids can perform very easily with fun. You can also use your own creative craft ideas according to your kid's interest. Don't forget to choose non toxic craft supplies for the health and safety of your toddlers.
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Why You Should Be Using Styrofoam to Build Your Model Railroad Scenery
Styrofoam is one of the most often materials used to create model railroad scenery.
Because it is so light it doesn't add a lot of weight to your layout, which makes it nice if you ever have to move your layout.
Because of its properties it is very easy to carve to create, mountains, hills, and just about any other shape you would need.
There are a few things to keep in mind while using Styrofoam.
If caution isn't used, it can dissolve away with certain chemicals. Before applying chemicals it should be tested on a piece of scrap before applying it to the part you just spent time shaping.
Fire should be kept away from it as it causes a deadly gas.
Care must be taken as it is brittle and can crumble if not protected properly.
Although there are a few drawbacks to Styrofoam it is a very suitable material to build your model railroad scenery.
To attach the foam to your benchmark it is best to use liquid nails or some other form of construction adhesive. These can be found at your local hardware stores, as well as big box stores.
When gluing the foam down, it's best to use large beads and spread the glue around so that the structure doesn't move around later down the road causing problems.
The foam should be protected to help preserve it.
It can be sealed with glazing that doesn't react with the foam.
By using craft adhesive spray you can attach cloth or plastic to form a base for painting.
Rock and dirt can be mimicked by using plaster of Paris, which also makes a solid paintable surface over the foam.
The only drawback to using a hard shell over a soft inner structure is that it can eventually crack due to the shrinking properties of the foam.
If a tunnel needs to be formed in the foam you can make an imprint on the bottom of the foam by aligning it where it needs to be and pressing down. Which will give an accurate guide to carve the foam out.
After the foam is carved out you can spray it with a sealer before painting the inside of the tunnel black which will hide the foam color and make a realistic looking tunnel.
It is advised to not use foam under the tracks cause it can give under the weight of the train.
It is better to use a more solid material such as wood that will hold up better and give you something to solidly attach the track to
Wood is the best product to use for attaching the track down. Even with elevation changes it can be shaped using appropriate wood cutting methods such as a table or band saw. If enough care is taken, then a hand saw or power saw can be used as well if you don't have access to other methods.
One of the worst parts about using Styrofoam is the mess it makes while cutting.
The little beads and dust go everywhere and you should also be using appropriate safety procedures when shaping it like a dust mask and safety goggles.
A vacuum cleaner such as a shop-vac is very handy to clean up the mess and get into all of the crevices that the foam makes its way into.
Although there are some drawbacks to using the Styrofoam it makes making the terrain for your model railroad layout much easier than other methods.
For more information and helpful tips on Model Railroad Scenery visit<
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Corgi Diecast Model Cars Make Excellent Collectables
Many people will remember the days when they were young. No worries in the world, and plenty of things to see and do. When we were kids, one of the favourite things that we could have were Corgi diecast models. These magnificent replicas of real vehicles would take up many hours of the day. With the value of some of those models these days, it is a shame that we never treated them with the respect that they deserved. Still, Corgi is still going strong, and for those looking to rekindle a bit of youth, there is a wide variety of models to collect.
Corgi produces all kinds of diecast models, including cars, hauliers, trains, buses and planes, so they have something for everyone. The most popular, and biggest sellers, are the cars, and Corgi has many different ones available, in a wide range of prices. In fact, some of them start as low as a couple of pounds, so starting a collection does not have to cost a lot of money. Even if you could only spare that amount of money each week of the year, you would still have a decent sized collection after only a year.
There are so many choices when it comes to cars it can be difficult to decide what to collect first. The best thing is to focus on a particular area, and stick with that until you have the full collection. For instance, you may have a love for Mini's, and a number of different models of this world famous car are available. Corgi manufacture one of the special Mini models, the 60th Anniversary Queen Elizabeth II Edition. This is a beautifully made diecast model car, and yet the price of it is less than ten pounds.
For those who are looking for something a little more sporty, then the range of models of fast supercars is vast in the diecast world, and Corgi do a replica of the much loved Subaru Legacy RS Turbo Series 1 in black. A lot of people will remember this version, and over the years, it has evolved into one of the best rally cars around. Of course, not everyone likes the fast vehicles, some will have a liking for the slower vehicles. Corgi make a replica of the Sentinal 6Wh D/Side Aberdeen Sea Defence, and many of those people who have retired will likely remember this vehicle on the streets a few decades ago.
There are also models like the distinct General Bus featuring the Michelin logo, which will likely bring back many happy memories for some people. The number of diecast models around is huge, even if we are just talking about the new ones available. Add in those sold on the auction sites, and collections can grow huge. The size of a collection depends on how much the owner is willing to spend, but as they are affordable, diecast models are an excellent way of putting together a nice collection of vehicles.
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How To Choose RTV Silicone When Making Resin Casting Molds
Let's discuss why you need to choose tin or platinum when buying silicone for mold making. First you should know tin cure is also known as "condensation cure silicone" and platinum cure is also known as "addition cure silicone". When you choose the wrong one it could mess-up your costly master model beyond repair. In one instance the silicone might not cure against the substrate material and remain sticky no matter what you do and in another, it doesn't cure for days because you're in an extreme dry climate giving you the impression all is lost when it probably is not. What does this mean to you? Read on and you'll know how to choose before buying avoiding potential costly issues.
Tin cure silicone is almost foolproof. Usually a 10:1 mix ratio by weight. Once mixed it will cure easily against most master model making media (oil clay, plastic, wood, stone, etc.). To cure it takes condensation from the air and gives off a byproduct of alcohol or ethanol. Since there is evaporation in the form of alcohol there is shrinkage of the same amount, usually in the 0.3-0.4% range; acceptable for most applications. Tin cure is robust, high in tear strength and a great tool making rubber. Bronze Foundries and Sculptors love it for its ability to make molds of fine detail and for the security of knowing it will cure against their precious masterpiece. Others love it for being easy to use and for its great strength.
Some companies offer two catalysts:
1. Normal / Slow, usually a 60-90 minute work time and 12 hour+ cure / de-mold
2. Fast 15-20 minute work time 6-8 hour cure / de-mold
• Some fast catalysts are not mix-able or compatible with the normal cure catalyst
Other companies offer three catalysts:
1. Normal / Slow, 60-90 minute work time and 12 hour+ cure / de-mold
2. Quick 30-35 minute work time 4-6 hour cure / de-mold
3. Fast 15-20 minute work time 6-8 hour cure / de-mold
• All three catalysts can me mixed or blended together to create the cure speed desired
Additives available are for both types of silicone and include:
1. Thixotropic additive a liquid thickener added in very small percentages. This allows for easy brush up of the silicone.
2. DMF silicone fluid thinner. Softens and thins all silicone's
3. d'Limonene solvent thinner. Special effects paint base and to thin for spraying.
With all the Tin cure advantages and ease of use you would wonder why some might choose platinum cure instead. Tin cure is used by a broad range of business and is the best choice for most hobbyists and beginners.
Platinum cure silicone can be either 10:1 or 1:1 mix ratio by weight. It is a chemical reaction cure with no byproduct or leaving group giving it the addition cure name. This means that there is nil shrinkage or less than 0.1% making it a great choice for precision parts. This silicone likes heat when curing.
Rule of thumb: For every 10 degrees above 70°F you can reduce cure time in half. For example in an oven at 140°F a 24 hour room temperature cure silicone would be ready in less than 20 minutes.
Rapid Prototyper's use Addition Cure for parts that require a high level of accuracy and parts that need to snap together and for fit and clearance studies. Platinum Cure silicone is well suited for and most widely used for the rapid prototyping industry. The mold making silicone is also best for higher temperature applications such as low melt metal alloys (lead, pewter, jewelry applications). They are highly durable when using polyester, urethane and epoxy casting resins. Platinum cure is used for FDG Food & Drug applications such as food molds. They are a bit finicky when making a mold due to surface inhibition caused by "poisonous" substrates like, tin, sulfur, oil clay, double side adhesives, synthetic rubber and a few more.
Silicone is the best mold making material in the world capturing detail beyond belief. Both tin cure and platinum cure silicone rubbers are an appropriate choice for casting resins of most types. The master model and what its made from often dictate which rubber to use. The application and specific casting resin being used to make your part can also determine which silicone to choose but the end results are the same, a great silicone mold with fine detail. Some manufacturing industries use both tin cure and platinum cure. Both come in a variety of hardnesses. Delicate parts need a softer silicone while the most commonly used mold making silicone rubber is a "25-28 shore A". For larger heavier concrete parts you may want something stiffer like a "40 or 50 shore A".
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How to Start Cross-Stitch
Cross-stitch is one of the oldest forms of embroidery and can be found all over the World.
Traditionally, cross-stitch was used to embellish the edges of household linens and there are many cross-stitchers who still employ it in this fashion; especially in Europe. Cross-stitch pictures are a more modern invention.
Cross-stitch is a popular form of counted-thread embroidery in which X-shaped stitches are used to form a picture or abstract design. Fabrics used for cross-stitch include Aida, linen and even-weave.
Although the stitching really could not be simpler, the variety of pictures that can be created is infinite, and at best can become almost 'oil painting' quality employing the subtle shading of a multitude of colours.
Projects are categorized by stitches per inch, which can range from 14 to 40 count; the appropriate fabric should be chosen. The fabric especially produced for cross-stitch is mostly white or cream but any fabric with countable threads might be suitable to use. A beginner would do well to choose a fabric with a lower count which will lend itself to holding larger stitches.
As long as you can put a needle in a hole you can do cross-stitch and it is a very good way of introducing children to sewing. There are kits available just for children. They can make colourful pictures in a reasonably short period of time.
If you decide to decorate any items that will need to be washed such as tablecloths, pillow cases, towels, aprons or children's clothes, you need to use a colour-fast thread. Some hand-dyed embroidery threads sold by specialist suppliers will not be suitable for any project save pictures that will be protected from dust under glass.
As a beginner it is probably best to start with a simple kit where everything you need except for a small pair of scissors and possibly a frame or mounting for the finished work will be provided. Very small projects can be worked in the fingers and will not require a frame to keep the fabric in shape.
When you move on to larger projects, whether from a kit or a self-initiated design, you may find the following tips useful.
1. Over-sew the edges of the fabric with tacking thread before you start to stop them fraying.
2. Work from the middle of the fabric outwards for the work to keep its shape. Find the middle of the fabric by folding it in half both ways and pinching the fabric between your fingers.
3. When embroidering a picture from a chart, first create a grid in running stitch over the piece of embroidery fabric (into blocks 10 by 10) before starting the design. Work with a good quality white or light-coloured thread that will not stain when you pull it out from the completed picture. Work your centre lines in a different colour. This preparation will be immensely useful in orientating you when you are trying to follow the chart.
4. When you start working on your design put a knot at the end of your first thread. Put the knot at the front of the fabric a little way off from where you want to start working and cut it off from behind the fabric when you have sewn enough crosses over the fabric to secure the thread in place. All the other threads can be secured into the back of the work making sure that the reverse side does not become too lumpy.
5. Make sure you always sew your crosses the same way. Crosses are usually sewn using two strands - untwist the six threads that will be cut from a skein to pull two strands out. Threads in kits are usually already cut to length.
6. Don't use lengths of thread that are too long because they will knot up when you are sewing.
7. Don't use beeswax to coat any sewing threads.
8. Outlines, often worked in black thread, are done in back-stitch usually using one strand.
9. Carry your colours across the back of your work as you move around the picture. Then secure the end of the thread at the back of the worked stitches when you have finished with it.
0. On bigger pieces of work you will need a frame. Never leave your work in a circular frame overnight. Take it off each time you stop working otherwise the fabric will be marked.
11. Big pictures take a long time to finish, so make sure you start with easier projects.
12. There are many books/magazines/charts/kits available to give you plenty of ideas for projects.
13. Always work in good light.
14. Keep your work in a bag to protect it when you are not working on it.
Cross-stitch can be very relaxing and meditative. Transferring a picture from a complicated chart to a piece of fabric can demand a good degree of concentration which is often a good way of switching your mind off from the stresses of every day life.
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How to Begin Patchwork
In patchwork, otherwise known as piecing, small pieces of fabric are sewn together to create a decorative design. This can be done either by hand or by using a sewing machine. It is only possible to use a sewing machine for stitching together certain shapes like squares and rectangles.
Sewing by hand is more popular and allows you to create more intricate designs. This method is known as 'piecing over paper'. This is because the shapes chosen for the final design are drawn onto paper and cut out. This must be done accurately for the pieces to fit together snugly. You can use graph paper or draw round a template.
Pieces of fabric slightly larger than the pieces of paper are tacked round each of the shapes and then joined together from the reverse side of the work using over-stitch. The tacking is done on the fabric only; it is not attached to the paper.
Geometric shapes are often used and even quite simple to construct patterns, like lines of squares, can create striking effects. The shapes must tessellate and so not every shape will work in patchwork. Hexagons will, but octagons have to be teamed with squares. 'T' shapes have to be constructed from two separate rectangles.
The work can then be embellished with appliqué, embroidery and even inlay patchwork. Appliqué is the application of motifs made from fabric to the front of the work whereas inlay patchwork is stitched from the underside. These techniques can be employed once the basics have been mastered.
A bed cover that has been pieced but not wadded is called a coverlet; one that has been wadded is called a quilt. Quilting is a method of stitching two layers of material together with wadding (or batting) in between. If the top layer is one piece of fabric, it is known as a wholecloth quilt; if the top is pieced it is known as a patchwork quilt. The bottom layer is usually one piece of fabric and is not generally on show. A quilt offers more warmth than a coverlet but takes more time to construct.
For beginners it may be wise to start on smaller projects such as cushion covers. If you want to create something to cover your bed you may want to opt for making a duvet cover which will be an easier project than a fully-constructed quilt. If you want to cover a ready-made cushion pad, make the patchwork to cover the pad don't look for a pad to fit your work.
Hand quilting is done on a frame. One hand is held above the quilt and the other below so that the needle can be passed from hand to hand through the quilt. Running stitch is used to secure all three layers together adding another decorative dimension to the pieced work. Working on a large quilt was traditionally done by groups of women either in a domestic or commercial setting. Quilting sessions were also often social occasions.
One of the nice things about patchwork other than the obvious use for otherwise wasted off-cuts of fabrics is that quilts often contain memories. The fabrics used could be from children's clothes or homemade curtains.
The names of the designs are often appealing as well as descriptive and often evoke thoughts of bygone days: 'grandmother's garden', 'log cabin', 'Jacob's ladder', 'bear's paw', 'flying geese', 'maple leaf'.
Of course fabrics can be bought especially for the purpose of making a quilt. Fabric for patchwork is usually sold in pieces called fat quarters and these pieces of fabric are often sold in bundles of similar coloured fabrics that complement each other. But you can buy fabric off the roll which is cheaper and of course you will be able to choose each fabric separately. When creating projects that will be washed it is important to use fabrics with similar washing instructions. If you use a pure cotton fabric, it will need more ironing than a fabric with a synthetic element.
If you choose to edge your work with piping, whether it is a quilt or cushion, bias binding can be tailor-made to match your fabrics or bought ready-made in packets. There are gadgets that can help you make your own bias binding; they are used in conjunction with an iron. Bias-binding is so called because it is fabric cut on the bias (cut diagonally) to ensure that it keeps its shape well and does not pucker when wrapped around a cord.
If you find that patchwork is the craft for you, you will probably want to invest in equipment that will help make each step of project construction easier. You can buy templates to draw round for your paper and fabric pieces, and cutting wheels and boards to make the job of cutting fabric pieces much quicker. For a huge array of fabrics, books and equipment it is well worth visiting a stitching show as well as checking out your local shops.
Then you will be well on your way to creating useful, unique and stunning projects for your home.
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Tips for Knitting Newbies
Not considered fashionable for decades, knitting has experienced a recent renaissance.
Knitting is an ancient skill from about a thousand years ago but is clearly still relevant and appealing today as it is rapidly becoming a popular social activity.
It appeals to every demographic it seems: from children to the retired, from models to grannies. Knitting can be useful, money-saving, soothing, creative and even addictive! These are appealing reasons to take up knitting in a modern and often stressful world.
Kitting Yourself Out
Kitting yourself out for your new hobby is not expensive at all.
Buying knitting needle cases full of just about every size of needle available is an unnecessary expense. Even the most experienced knitter will probably never use needles in every size that is produced. Just buy needles as you need them. They should last a lifetime.
The size of needle you need for any yarn is stated on its ball band. But if you don't knit with standard tension you will need another size. Your tension will possibly be quite tight when you start learning, but will loosen when you and your hands become more relaxed.
To knit a garment you will usually need two pairs of needles. The smaller size will be used for the ribbing. To check a size of needle is right for the tension you knit at, the pattern will recommend you knit a tension square. But this exercise is nothing to concern yourself with as a beginner.
You just need to learn how to knit; and a simple square is a good first project.
Knitting needles are made from different materials: plastic, metal, wood and bamboo. Plastic ones might feel the most comfortable to begin with and they do come in an array of colours. Types of needles are a matter of personal choice. Experimenting with different ones can come later.
You will also need a small pair of scissors and perhaps a bag to store all your knitting and equipment in.
If you leave knitting on needles for a long period of time, a mark will appear across your work. So if you have to leave a piece of unfinished knitting aside for a good while, leave it on a stitch holder or a smaller size of knitting needle ready to take up again when you are ready. But as a beginner just learning to knit, you probably won't be making any garment to wear so you need not worry about this problem at this stage.
Don't learn to knit with large needles and chunky yarn. You will need something comfortable to hold in your hands and these might prove too cumbersome to deal with.
Getting Started
It is probably best to start learning with a double knitting yarn on 4mm needles.
Double knitting yarn is manageable, not too thin and not too thick, and comes in a huge selection of colours. Don't work with very dark-coloured yarn like black or navy when you begin learning. If you drop a stitch, it will be very difficult to see.
Once you have learnt to knit you can move on to other thicknesses of yarn and become as creative and experimental as you like - but you need to make things as easy for yourself as possible to start with.
There are books and magazines with diagrams to show you how to knit, but knitting is probably a skill best learnt by watching somebody doing it.
Many knitting yarn shops now are starting their own classes and if they don't have anything so formal, they may have a knitting circle that you can join with experienced knitters at hand to help you every time you get stuck or drop a stitch.
Look out for a poster displayed in a prominent position. They will be only too glad to enrol you and if they are full to bursting, they may have a waiting list you can join.
Knitting clubs and cafes are also listed online; there may be one local to you.
Getting More Help
Otherwise, if you have nobody to help you, you can just Google 'how to knit video'. These videos will help you with the different stitches and casting on. Knowing how to knit is not at all difficult. It is just the competence and then picking up speed that takes a little practice.
Different Ideas
Don't worry about using knitting patterns to start with. Making a scarf is a good project when you are learning to knit. You can make it a stripy one to make knitting it more interesting even if you are not a Doctor Who fan!
A scarf should not be knitted in stocking stitch; so learn how to cast on and off and how to do the knit stitch and you will be away!
There is more than one way to cast on. You will choose the one that is easiest for you.
Using the knit stitch in every row is called 'garter stitch' but using the knit stitch and purl stitch alternately in rows is called 'stocking stitch'.
You will probably want to make quite a few items just using garter stitch before you learn how to purl.
Buying Yarn
Always check ball bands when you buy your yarn, all the dye batch numbers should be the same. The assistant may also do this for you as she packs your bag. Keep a ball band for washing instructions.
If the batch numbers are not the same, a line is likely to appear across your work where the colour changes, spoiling the knitting. Make sure you buy enough yarn; there are plenty of ways to use up leftovers!
Even as a beginner, anything you make will probably be unique and so you will never walk down the street and meet someone wearing a replica of your creation.
Beyond the Scarf
When you have knitted your umpteenth scarf there are easy patterns for beginners to be found on the Internet.
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Coin Collecting For Fun
Coin collecting is one of those hobbies almost everyone has tried at some point in their life. And why not? It is easy to start as everyone has some spare change. It is also relatively inexpensive. Find a penny from each of the last hundred years and it could potentially only cost you a buck.
The Problems With Investing
Collecting is also a serious investment with professional grades of coins secured in plastic so they cannot be touched or even breathed upon.
Fact is, unless your coin is rare and worth a lot of money it is unlikely to ever make you money. The reason is the wholesale versus retail spread. When you buy a coin it is a retail price from a dealer. When you want to sell the coin back to the dealer they buy it a wholesale price. The difference, or spread, is the cost to run the business and make a profit.
The spread is why coin investing is so difficult. A coin has to be worth a lot, and be rare to significantly appreciate so as to overcome the spread. Think of it this way. A $10 coin that appreciates ten percent a year (don't you wish everything appreciated that much) after ten years is worth about $25. Fifteen dollars is not going to go far. Assuming a twenty percent spread you can sell it for about $20. Then you pay federal and state taxes on your ten dollar profit, leaving you with about a six dollar profit after then years.
A $100 coin in our scenario doubles during the same time when figuring our net profit. See why you need coins worth a lot of money and which are rare so they significantly appreciate in value?
It can be depressing if you are investor.
The Fun of Collecting
On the other hand, if you are collecting for fun you do not have to worry about any of this. Sure, you want a deal with buying, but price is less of an object. You do not have to worry about the wholesale retail spread and wondering when a good time to sell is. You are not in the market to sell the coin.
All you want to do is enjoy the coin.
You are share it with your family and friends. You get satisfaction just from having it and looking it. You may not even care if a few oxygen molecules get on it because it is not tightly wrapped in plastic.
Oh yeah, about the grading of coins: that costs money. For a ten dollar coin that is professionally graded after a decade you have lost money. Even for a hundred dollar coin there is a severe bite out of any appreciation. On top of that is paying for the plastic to house the coin.
The end result? You might as well go into collecting for the fun of the hobby!
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The Benefits of a Hobby
A hobby is not always something we do that is creative. If it is then all the better, because quite often a hobby can turn into a full time job. It is something we can control as to how much time we wish to put into it so it can generate some major income and the bonus is that we own it. To me there has been nothing more self satisfying then seeing my art hobby start to become a career. Anyone can begin at any age, all one needs is the pure passion as the main ingredient to make a small hobby a big reality.
In today's economic climate people are being made redundant from their nine to five jobs while others are losing their investment money. This can easily cause a ripple effect in a persons psyche, and cause the person to spiral. When this happens, people can begin to live in the gloom of all the bad things that have happened to them in their lives, including the blow of just losing their job.
This is definitely where seeking a hobby can pull a person out of the depths of despair, and get them focusing on something else rather than reliving their past life. A person can so easily be dragged into a black hole and it ends up being their psychological home. This is very damaging to the person themselves and also to the people around them, therefore no popularity contests are going to be won while living in a black hole of despair.
Life is a roller coaster of ups and downs, and people will always let us down at some point as jobs are lost and nest eggs disappear. The good thing about life is that there are still hobbies out there that are available to anyone that can see they could make a fair to good income. All that is required to make it all happen is a build up of trust and putting in some time and effort to reap the rewards of something you can successfully own. You can always get other people to help such as family or friends. They may help you extend your hobby into a thriving business.
There are opportunities for growth in a small hobby, they have the ability to be able to stretch to great lengths if we are prepared to put in the time and effort. Doing what you love to do everyday and making an income from what used to be just a hobby is something to be proud of and you can say "I own this."
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The Main Reasons Why One Should Start Scrapbooking Today
Are you looking for an exciting new hobby to pass your time with? Do you have some pictures lying around your house or just some old albums? Do you have just some little money to spend? If so then scrapbooking is a hobby you must be looking for. <
Scrapbooking is a nice way of putting family pictures together in a form of art that you can look at for years to come and pass it over to the next generation. Below we are going to go into details why you should start this interesting hobby.
To Scrapbook Is Simple
Since scrapbooking is a craft a lot of beginners think that it's very difficult for you to create one. A lot of the crafts you see on craft markets are difficult to make but scrapbooking is not. Once you get started with scrapbooking you will discover that it's very easy to do.
In fact the part you will find difficult will be the part where you will have to choose the picture to put on the layout. So if you have a lot of pictures it will be wise to create lot of scrapbooks. This can take some time to complete but in due time you will see the wonderful memories you will have created.
When doing your own scrapbook you can buy an empty photo album and put your pictures in different positions in the pages of the album. To make it better looking you can add different kinds of embellishments to the layout and this will make all the pages look unique not forgetting beautiful.
Wonderful Hobby
With all the other hobbies you can start, scrapbooking is one hobby that can be enjoyed by the whole family and is very addictive as well. When you create your first scrapbook you will surely want to create another one soon as possible. And as your designs get better you will begin to enjoy doing this more and find it difficult to stop.
As said earlier this hobby can be enjoyed by the whole family, which means old and young children can join in the project at hand. Some parents even teach their children how to create scrapbooks so they do this on their own and make personalized scrapbooks.
Scrapbooking Supplies
A lot of hobbies are quiet expensive to pursue and can cost you a lot of money to start, well scrapbooking isn't one of those hobbies that will drain you your money. Scrapbooking supplies are very cheap and can be bought from a lot of craft markets and stores.
As you see starting this hobby is simple to do and can be done by almost anyone who has a camera or photos. When making your scraps just throw in some of your creativity and you will see yourself producing beautiful scrapbooks.
There's a lot more involved in scrapbooking designs. If you want more guidelines on how to be a creative scrapper then get yourself a copy of the one and only guide to do it yourself scrapbooking here: []
You can also get your FREE copy of our ebook "Scrapbooking For Beginners" that will give you tips on using various methods to designing beautiful scrapbooks. Download your copy here: Scrapbooking for beginners [].
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Guide to Getting Started In Scrapbooking:
The Scrapbooking Themes That You Should Know Of
Scrapbooking is a hobby that has been done for some time now. No body knows when it first started but what we know is that people use scrapbooking to make memories of events they don't want to forget. Back in the day's people used simple black and white for their scrapbook pages but now textured and colored pages are used to create beautiful pages. To make the pages even more unique creative embellishments and themed stickers are used.
There are lots of themes you can choose in making your own scrapbook page, the theme you choose can be a family event that you want to make memories of or a school event you had with your class mates.
Creative family themes:
Family scrapbooks are mostly done by a lot of families as a way to preserve particular events that may have happened. Some events can be children's parties, family gatherings or any other family special event. When creating your family scrapbook you can divide it into sections for that particular event, like there will be a section for birthdays, seasons, vacations and reunions.
If you find that your album will be too large for a particular project then cut down the themes to a specific child. The theme can be for your first child's spoken words, first walk and first drawing. Don't forget to put their first birthdays and include the friends that where there as well. You can also add baby booties to the themed scrapbook.
Once your child grows older you can create a separate theme that will include things like certificates, sports, awards and graduations. Include pictures of their school friends and teachers that you know are close to him/her.
Creative individual themes:
Individual scrapbook themes are a wonderful way to preserving your memories. They are perfect gifts and make wonderful small albums. Individual scrapbooks include things like pregnancy, a child's birth, promotions, marriage, graduations and any other wonderful occasions.
Making these albums can be easily done and less expensive if you use a "brag book' style album. To make the scrapbook more tangible you can include rubber charms and coordinating stickers. A nice example is a wedding scrapbook, for this you can put items like newspaper announcements, wedding invitations, present covers etc. And to embellish the album you can use pressed flowers, paper doilies, gift wrapping papers and laces. Just make sure the colors match with the theme of the scrapbook.
Don't forget to take good care of your albums so they last a lifetime. To do this you can use a hard cover for the album and put it in a safe place.
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