My December Adventures!

Its the last day of December. Isn’t that crazy? I’m doing this on the last day instead of tomorrow since we have 2020 business to take care of then so shifting things up a little. We’re going through the very busy December and all kinds of recap and seemingly a bunch of shopping and gifts and fairs and outings, etc.

Fingers crossed that all will go as planned as writing in December has been a bit all over the place… (it hasn’t because this is going up much later than expected)

CRHS Annual Craft Fair (December 1)

DIY Christmas

You can see the post on it HERE.

Marbled Ornaments

Next up, I went along and tried out some Marbled Ornaments as well! Which was mostly a failed attempt in general but did decide that its a project to further pursue and figure out. Plus, its some nice way to use up old nail polish so that its not just thrown out without some form of recycling/repurposing. You can check my post on that HERE.

Marché Casse-Noisette & Mini-Comiccon

Marche Casse -Noisette took place from November 28 to December 8 at Palais des Congres which happened to overlap with Mini Montreal Comiccon held December 7 and 8 also at Palais des Congres just one was in the main hall and the other was upstairs. With that said, it made sense to go and check out both at the same time. While the haul wasn’t particularly a lot, it was a first time visit for both place for myself. Some nice discoveries to be found. I will definitely go check the Marché Casse-Noisette again but probably not the Mini Comiccon as its rather lackluster.

Salon des Metiers d’Art 2019

Salon des metiers d'art 2019

  • Coach House Shortbread Company: Dark Chocolate & Salt; Almond & Rose; Ginger
  • La Nougaterie: Salt Flower Caramel; Dark Chocolate; Christmas
  • Nutra Fruit: Chocolate Covered Cranberry; Dark Chocolate- Cranberry Spread
  • Cidrerie du Minot: Des Glaces
  •  Choco Chocolat: Dark Chocolate; Dark Hazelnut

A lot of the SMAQ 2019 sales is about the same as previous years, the exception being that I bought the spread from Nutra Fruit and the chocolate from Choco Chocolat, which I believe is a new booth this year at the Salon. Most of this stuff is for festival party time and gifts and whatnot.

Ottawa Day Trip

Mavericks Donut

We took a quick trip with a friend to go to Ottawa to do some quick errands. We had a nice lunch at Fatboys (post about our first time HERE) and then finally found time to go grab some donuts at Mavericks Donut, which they had 4 dairy-free flavors and the husband and the friend each chose 4 to get a dozen. After that, I finally brought home Pumbaa from Disney Store to join Timon at our place and then picks up some wine at LCBO and some food in preparation for NYE dinner plans at T&T Supermarket.

Holiday Festivities: Christmas Dinners & NYE Hotpot

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Christmas Eve dinner was a ton of fun with a lot of people at the in-laws. It was a fun little event with some surprise gifts for ourselves which we didn’t expect to get anything in the first place. My mom wanted to have a turkey feast (as shown above) so she held a dinner and invited us and some of her own friends for dinner and here we have the overzealous food galore. Everything was delicious as usual. NYE is a hotpot meal and part of the Battle of Ingredients festivities so a separate post will be done for that.

Boxing Day Shopping Haul

Boxing Day this year has been a little less exciting. It has to do a lot with the fact that we’ve been trying to decrease expenses and its truly changed the spending habits into being very cautious with our expenses. Its not going to seem it since we’ve done a lot of shopping this past month…seemingly..but then its all useful things or food. Either way, without further ado (as this is the last part before this post ends)..the shopping haul from Boxing Day.

  • Adidas outlet: Running Shoes
  • Dynamite: Sweater and 3-pack scrunchies
  • Steam Sale: Life is Strange 2: Complete Edition, Detention, Gris, The Infectious Madness of Doctor Dekker, Glass Masquerade
  • Playstation Holiday Sale: Overcooked 2, Assassin’s Creed: Odyssey
  • Amazon: Playstation 4 Controller Charging Dock
  • Walmart: John Wick 2

Cute Kitty Pic

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That’s it for this December Adventures!
How was your holidays? Had a lot of fun with family? Did you do some Boxing Day shopping?

DIY Crafts: Branch Wreath (Take #2)

Probably the last crafts post (although I am trying to squeeze in one more thing before Christmas comes around) for the holidays and its a Take 2 of Branch Wreath. We’ve been having some really crappy weather so its rather gloomy. To cheer up my in-laws, because I do that every once in a while when I have something fun to share, I decided to make them a new wreath, specifically a branch wreath (since that is apparently my new obsession).

This one is definitely more for my mother-in-law who likes angels (according to my husband) so we found the only angel decor and built the wreath around it.

Here’s our shopping haul at Michael’s:

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  • Gold Branch Wreath
  • 1 Mistletoe
  • 1 Fir and Pine Cones
  • 2 Angels
  • 2 Holly Leaves with Birds
  • 2 Eucalyptus and White Berries
  • 2 Snowy Branches (I don’t know how to describe them but its the long white ones)

After a lot of deliberation and moving things around and a floor full of gold sparkles and branches, this was the final result.

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In my opinion, I actually think this one beats my own (which I am not working on fluffing up a little to give it more volume). This is where this one has more of and works pretty well also. It feels more dimensional and has some depth with layers of different decors. I did hot glue the pieces into the wreath so that my in-laws can store it without anything breaking off.

Improvements to this one (because what crafting wouldn’t have that in my opinion):

  • I’d have added another angel to give it a row which would make it an obvious centerpiece.
  • Would have gotten some wire to tie down some of the stems that are embedded in the wreath as I had to twist it forcibly and then glue it to the wreath and hopefully it won’t come out

Other than that, I’m pretty happy with this one. It highlights the theme I’m going for and adds the greenery and the color scheme works pretty well. I like the symmetry but also the parts that stand out are the ones where its subtle changes with the mistletoe on one side and the fir and pine cones on the other, giving it subtle differences. Its an improvement in my opinion from the previous one because it adds some three dimensional feeling to it.

I’m not quite sure that I’d work with a gold wreath again though because its a very dominating sort of backdrop color palette that very few things seem to work with. Maybe I’ll try out the silver wreath next time (or maybe the red which is the remaining option, I think, but that might also be hard and not easy to decorate the house with).

Future wreath themes to think about: North Pole or Rustic Woodland

You can check out my previous wreath post HERE.

DIY Crafts: Marbled Ornaments

It seems crafts are definitely in the air as I tackle on something that I’ve seen around the Facebook feeds and Youtube front pages over the past year and while it was for some other things like car aesthetics and such, I decided to try to do it for ornaments as I did some research and some people do it as well.

This was a learning process so most of it was a failure BUT, I think I had one that turned out okay and the other ones, I’m going to redecorate so that they can be used for tree. As for why its a failure, I’ll talk about at the end. The process in general works but its more the execution…

Anyways..let’s check it out!

Craft accessories

Marbled Ornaments

  • Old nail polish
  • Clear baubles (mine are glass, but they do sell it in plastic..not sure how that would end up though)
  • Room temperature water
  • Old container (not reusable for any edible items)
  • Toothpicks
  • Cotton swabs

How to do it:

Marbled Ornaments

  1. Fill the container with room temperature water. Take the nail polish color(s) you want to use and drop it into the water. It should float and expand.
  2. Quickly, use the toothpick to make the patterns (if its multiple colors). I believe you can for single color also but I haven’t tried before.
  3. Use a glove if you want to cover the entire bauble or dip it half way to wrap it up. Remember to use a cotton swab to pick up any left over colors from the water before re-emerging the bauble from the water.

Marbled Ornament

Voila! That’s the final and most successful one (at the sixth try)!

But I’m not going to cheat all of you out of all my failures as well so here’s all six of them…

Marbled Ornaments

Look at it like how you’d do a C shape and that’s the order of how it was done.

  • The first was the result of not having a cotton swab to pick up the excess so it dragged all over it creating a huge thick smush. The colors aren’t bad but that blob doesn’t work with it.
  • Two and Five has the issues of mostly choosing bad colors so it just blended together into a whole lot of nothing.
  • Three and Five suffers a bit from the first issue I had but also had these issues of the toothpick dragging too late and it had already formed the film so the colors moved all into a bunch
  • Six is by far the best one both in marbled effects as well as the color combination

There you go! That’s the little DIY Marbled Ornaments that I did! Its really a lot harder than it looks. I wanted to try it to get rid of all the old nail polish that I can’t use anymore because its separated or whatnot. I wonder if using not so separated one would be better even if I did shake it to make it work. There is a big nail polish fumes emitting from the bauble though. So you will want to air them out a lot before using these DIY Ornaments.

Other than that, it is pretty fun to mix and match colors and work on this. Like I mentioned above, I will probably find some way to incorporate other old things and add some stuff to these failed ornaments so that they can be used one way or another to hide the issues on the surface. I’ll see what I can do. Maybe I’ll do an Instagram post on it or something when I’m done.

Have you tired marbled ornaments with nail polish?
If you have, please tell me whether you were successful and where you see my issues are. Any tips and suggestions will be highly appreciated!

DIY Crafts: Branch Wreath (1st attempt)

Signs of the early years of Tranquil Dreams is coming back into shape this December as I get through some housekeeping for the blog going on in the background, I’m having this sudden urge to get back into doing some DIY crafts and also some cooking and baking planned as well. Its going to be (hopefully) a fun little December that will get back on track on all the positive things that I’ve always liked doing as a crafty and creative outlet that is a very wonderful release for me when I manage to put together something nice.

First project to tackle is a branch wreath. I’ve put together all the wreaths at our current home and while it might not be as economical as a store-bought one, all of mine are unique to what I want on there and how I want it to look like. Feeling like a bit of a change, I went for a branch wreath at Michael’s during the Black Friday Sale and picked up a bunch of wreath decorations to see what I could do.

Here are all the supplies that I had bought:

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  • Branch Wreath
  • Wreath Decorations

There’s something very different from doing a branch wreath than doing a pine wreath. It has to do with the whole messy elements of trying to put all the elements in. Putting in the decorations is trying to find that spot to hold them in place while hiding the sticks holding them up also. I didn’t use any wire which you could get or go with using hot glue to keep them all in place. With that said, designing branch wreaths are more minimalist in some ways where less is more.

Here’s my first trial which didn’t quite look like how I wanted so it was quickly pulled apart to rethink and redo…

Branch Wreath

Back to zero, I did some research on Pinterest on how branch wreaths usually are structured and then thought about a new structure where I would go find some supplies that I had bought before but never used. There some gold hollies and berries that I had picked up a year or two ago at Michael’s at a previous sale but never found a way to implement in anything else.

The final branch wreath turned out like this:

Branch Wreath

The final one looks like this.

It is a very simple first attempt and I can see some places where I can improve at filling in the gaps and making it feel more full and giving it some more volume as well. Overall, I am fairly happy with it as it does have the fun little elements of Christmas that I like and its along the lines of what I wanted to do.

Branch wreaths are this very interesting element to discover because of the whole fitting the pieces into a more classy style and it also has this less is more element to it while giving it space for the branches to have its compliment to whats put on it. I’m definitely having some more ideas on what themed wreaths to do. But there’s still time to maybe spruce this one up as nothing there is set because I also like my wreaths to have the chance to change it up when I get tired of looking at it. This version doesn’t have any glued elements and just held from strategically placing them to hold in place by the branches under and some of the wired holders on the wreath decorations.

*As a side note, I am working on a second one as a gift so expect a post on the new one (along with an update if I do change something on this one). That one is looking a lot more refined than this first one in my opinion so far but the theme isn’t fitting in as well as I’d like it to so its still in the making. *

Making Yarny from Unravel!

Happy Sunday!! Today, I’m here with a fun little crafting project. Maybe you know what Unravel is or maybe you don’t, but that doesn’t matter. Yarny is the darling little yarn boy in this independent game called Unravel. We covered on the debut episode of Game Warp and even had a little challenge to make one of our own. Its been almost two months but its only right to get it done before our next game review podcast comes out sometime next week.

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Here’s the video of how to make Yarny if you want to give it a try:

Here’s just a picture trail of how mine was done along the way!

Yarny

Materials

Yarny

Yarny Skeleton

My Yarny

My Yarny

What do you think? The head kind of is a little off but I think it was okay. But to be honest, I had to rework the skeleton/frame one for the arms, legs and the head. In face, my Yarny might have two skeleton frames to give it that shape. Crafting skills is a little rusty. However, I have never worked with wire before so I think it was okay.

Now, I have a ton of red and white yarn left. What crafts to do with them now? Any suggestions?

Christmas: DIY Ornaments!

Man, it seems like I make ornaments every single year! I was gifting them. Then I made some for my own tree last year.  This year, the tree is done but I still had some leftover glass ornaments that I could use so I figured that I’d start making it for next year. I had found a really simple DIY ornament on Pinterest and it had me intrigued.

Let’s make some ornaments! 🙂

DIY Ornaments

What you need: 

Glass ornament balls (not sure if it works on plastic)
Acrylic paint (whatever color you want)

Acrylic paints I used: Gold, Silver, Frost

Acrylic paints I used: Gold, Silver, Frost Translucent & not shown here: Extreme Glitter/Silver

Making this is super easy if not a little time consuming. But once you figure out the technique that works for you, it’ll be a breeze.

Pretty much, you put some paint into the glass ornament ball.  Then you shake so that it covers the entire interior. My suggestion is to cover the top with a kleenex or paper or something so that when you shake it won’t come flying out and dirtying your furniture or clothes, etc. At times, shaking doesn’t work so you can try tapping it on the table.

 I started with the batch with small ornaments for the first night and then tried out the big ones the next day. Here’s how it turned out:

DIY ornaments

The first batch was all clear cut.  Two of each: metallic gold, metallic silver and translucent frost.

The next night when I decided to give this another go.  I did one more metallic gold as I thought their effect was the nicest but tried out the Extreme Glitter ones.  In the back row, you see that I got a little more creative and started mixing.  You can actually see it here.  The top right is a mix of told and silver. You can’t really see it because of the glare but it swirls in the bottom and the middle. The one right above it was a mix of Glitter and White (which I also didn’t list up on top).  The effect isn’t too bad.  If I could only figure out how to make it a little more structured.  Maybe with paintbrush strokes or something.

This year making these is really in preparation for next year since we’re done with ornaments and the tree.  And, I was cleaning up the boxes in storage and found these sitting around waiting to be decorated and crafted. I have two more packs. I’m sure I’ll figure out some fun way to decorate them next year 😉 For now, back to the storage they go.

Do you like to make your own ornaments? 

A Word A Week Challenge: Metallic

Sue`s A Word A Week Challenge is to open her dictionary and choose a random word. This week`s word is METALLIC.  The first thought I had when I read this is exactly what I`m posting about after a whole week of thinking about it.

If you all don`t know, I love jewelry.  Other than summer dresses and romantic comedies, its probably what makes me quite girlish.  However, I don`t like any kind of jewelry.  I`m actually not into super fancy bling types but rather very metallic ones.

Every year at the Montreal Arts and Crafts show right around Christmas time, I always reward myself with a little something or if I don`t, I always make a stop at my favorite handcrafted jewelry store called Christophe Poly.  The designs are just super awesome and its pretty inexpensive.  I`m not trying to promote for them.  Just thats the style I love!

Metallic bracelet

Metallic bracelet

Thats one of my newest additions and one of my absolute faves.

Another type of jewelry I totally love is those ones where its DIY and you have to buy the pieces one by one.  As much as I`d like the real thing from Pandora (or whichever), my boyfriend went with me to Walmart and we got similar gems and put together a necklace that I love and make use of it for all sorts of events to match my clothes 🙂 The focus is on the main charm which he chose as a metallic key!

My own Charms necklace!

My own Charms necklace!

I also have this weird love for hair accessories, and it goes along with an occasional desire to be young and cute.  Last year in Hong Kong at Ladies Market, I got this one with a little bow on the side and its one of the few that have a metallic lining on the bottom for support. I love the background I used with one of my favorite quotes!

Hair bands

Hair bands

On top of that, I love little handcrafted decorations. When I was in Hong Kong last year visiting Lamma Island, an elderly woman was selling her beautiful fishes made with simple material that you would never guess.  It all had different colors and lined with colorful metallic wire tails.

Metallic tails on hand crafted goldfish

Metallic tails on hand crafted goldfish

Last showcase is a last minute addition I thought about right before bed, the model is my cat and her beautiful collar that she has two of that are similar but not the same because she keeps losing one and then we find the other one somewhere else and then exchange it on her neck.  As much as I want her to be free and it does make her even prettier than she already is, its more of an alarm to know when she`s going to pop out of nowhere and jump on me.  She`s playful but sometimes she forgets that her claws actually do hurt.  I mean, last time she already left permanent light claw marks on my shoulder.

Metallic bell on my cat`s collar

Metallic bell on my cat`s collar

Whats does the word Metallic remind you of?

DIY Vase Project!

After the glass ornaments (which you can find HERE), the next night I went straight to work on the Vase Kit Project that I had bought. I provided me not only with the vase but all the tools I needed to decorate it.

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The supplies with the kit

Step 1: Using a sponge, apply the Vitrail transparent Parma colour on the previously degreased and dried surface.

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Step 2: Apply the Vitrail opaque wheat yellow colour followed by the Vitrail transparent old pink colour with a sponge.

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Step 3: Allow to dry 1 hour. (I needed more than that for it to completely dry…so expect at least 2-3 hours)

Step 4: Decorate the surface with the cerne relief.

They gave me circular patterns however, I had some newly bought Martha Stewart votive candle stencils so I tried to copy 3 of the patterns onto the vase.  Normally, you’d stick them on and them just dab on the colour, but this one, I couldn’t stick the stencil on or else it would’ve ripped out the paint under it.  I tried to imitate it as much as possible but my art and cerne relief skills are a bit lacking…so this is how it turned out.

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Thats the final project.  I’m planning on giving it as a vase or candle holder.

Another gift completed.  What do you think?  Good for a first shot? Lets hope whoever gets this doesn’t cringe in disgust..haha…thats my only hope.  Wish me luck!

Only one more gift before I’m done everything.  For now, I need to take a break and head out to shovel snow!  🙂 Promise you I’ll be back with another post soon…I’m having a bit of traffic jam in posts to cram in before Christmas comes by.

Handmade Necklace with Swarovski Elements

I did about 3 hours of shopping for craft supplies this past weekend in preparation for the gifts I was going to make for Christmas.  Luckily, on Sunday, after being overwhelmed at everything sitting in the bag, I sat down and got straight to work on the first gift.

Its not completely handmade but I did have to stick on all the individual crystals and arrange it myself.  I thought it looked pretty nice.  I think I probably spent an hour arranging and rearranging the crystal beads on the pendant to see how it looked.

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This was testing phase and final choice

Originally, I was going to make a semi-precious necklace but seeing as my local Walmart didn’t have anything I particularly needed and was overloaded with people.  I managed to find the pendant and crystals to put on.  I thought it would be pretty  nice thought.  I started regretting immediately that I didn’t go to an arts and crafts supplies store right when I got home.

If you are at all interested in making this, which I think is a pretty nice thought, here are the supplies I used:

– 18 inch (45.72cm) nylon cord necklace

– Create Your Style with Swarovski Elements Pendant

– Swarovski Elements Flat Back Non-Hot Fix Crystals

– Crystal Glue Pen

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This is the final product.

You need to give it a little time to dry though. The gluing might have taken me an hour or so.  Glue pens I actually don’t regret doing this because when my boyfriend saw it, he gave me the approval.  You can’t see it clearly with the reflection but I used two different shades of blue crystals and white/clear crystals.  The blue ones were somewhere along the lines of aqua and sapphire.  The clear crystals are the ones that are looking  a bit pink in the light.  It’d say its pretty.

Also, you don’t have to get this at Walmart or whatnot.  I was researching this online and saw that the Create Your Style with Swarovski Elements is actually something you can customize for different events and more choices are available online.  Here’s the link if you’re interested: http://www.create-your-style.com/Content.Node/index.php?  I’m not advertising for them but they seem to be nifty design projects that I’m definitely going to look into for future reference.

One day, I will actually get that jewelry making skills down.  I am quite pleased with this one and it was really fun.  I’ll probably go ahead to learn more complicated ones eventually.

My Christmas Decorations are UP!!

**Note: If anyone caught this before multiple times, I apologize, the tablet was giving me a hard time with the pictures and the video.  It should be all fixed now.**

Christmas used to be a lot more festive and then there were a few low season years when we didn’t even own a Christmas tree.

For the last few years, Christmas has been a lot more fun since my boyfriend has a lot of family here so we have a big gathering including my mom and me and his sister’s in-laws family. It gets quite fun.  We usually do the whole Christmas eve celebrations. My boyfriend’s dad actually is the most festive of all.  He has a collection of Santa Claus and some move and sing different tunes.  The last few years,  I’ve given him penguins and an elf for decor as well.  The lights are lit and then the Christmas trees are put up.

Check out both of our Christmas decorations!

These pictures are taken with my tablet, so hope the quality isn’t too bad.

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This beautiful tree is my future in laws. Isn’t it absolutely beautiful? You see that ladder with Santa on it? That Santa can climb up and down the ladder. I find that extremely cool.

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This Christmas village is placed at the foot of his Christmas tree. That’s all I have of his for now. If I get some videos of his Santa collection, I will post it up later.

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This is the elf decoration that we both have. This blue one is mine, and he has the green one. It moves but unfortunately, I haven’t gone to get batteries for it just yet. It’s actually really cute because it moves like a busy elf running around.

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My moms favorite addition is poinsettias. The second day she came back home from her trip and she already had bought it. Even before all the other stuff was put up.

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When all of our relatives moved away, we gave away our big Christmas tree. The year after, I couldnt handle it and went out to get this small tree lit with colorful LED lights that change colours. Unfortunatly its hard to capture it, but I did add a candy star on the top and little cute decorations. As for that circular ornament, I made that two years ago at a cookie swap. It’s the only one that survived my cat’s paws.

And to end things, one of my favorite decorations with a little video, also with my tablet so please the shaky hands.


Is your Christmas decor up? A lot more festive? Do you buy a real Christmas tree?