Sunday, August 11, 2013

A little bit of lovin'

I had so much fun at the Utah Teacher/Blogger Meet-Up just last week.  I came prepared to give a little something to all the new friends I knew I would make (teachers bloggers are so fun and friendly).  Just a little something.

I was not prepared for all the ohhs and ahhs I got over my little pens and magnets.

Seriously they were easy to make and not to terribly time consuming.  I started with the magnets because I had made them before.  You can see my alphabet ones here and here.  Some were scrapbook paper, some were clip art (and someone suggested fabric, so I experimented when I got home).  I started with my pile of supplies.

I used a 1 inch circle punch for some.  Others, I traced around the stone.  Not all stones are the same size, those got trimmed up after the magnets were on.  I used clip art (and fun fonts when I made the alphabet), because it is digital I inserted them into a powerpoint presentation.  I checked the size of the picture to be sure it was one inch.  Then I filled the slide with the images, printed, and cut them out.

Now that I have a stack of little circles I am ready to glue.

1.  Brush Mod Podge on the stone
2.  Wiggle the circle picture side down on to the stone making sure it is flat.
3.  Brush Mod Podge on the back to seal.
4.  Let it dry (overnight or I left mine for a week while I went on vacation...haha)

Now it's time to glue the magnets on the back.  I've used tacky glue, but this time it was hot glue.  Much quicker.  :)

Just a couple of tips....The Keep Calm clip art is from FlapJack Educational Resources.   I like when the entire stone is covered, so I sometimes glue right to the paper and then cut when it is dried.  It is a little trickier to cut, and it takes extra time because you have to let it dry, then cut, then seal the back, and dry again before you can put the magnet on the back.  I do like the way it looks.  I think it is probably worth the extra time.

Now for the pens....

You need:
pens (now is a good time to get them with all the Back to School deals)
That's it

If you are making more than one, you have to think a little bit about your "order of operations", and what works for you.  It will go quickly if you do it like an assembly line (get all the parts prepped and then put them together).

I hadn't made pompoms in years so I did some google research first.  Here is what I found:

Then here is what I decided to do.  I wrapped my poms first, then wrapped my pens, while the pens were drying I cut and fluffed the poms.  Finally I hot glued the pompom to the top of the pen and trimmed the long strings (or not).  There you go...cute pens.  Can anyone say google eyes?

Let me break that down a bit more....
First I esti-measured 12 yards of yarn (nose to outstretched arm for each yard).  Next I wrapped it around and around three fingers, then I took another piece of yarn and tucked it between my middle and index finger (right there close to the knuckle) and wrapped it around the yarn.

I tied a loose simple knot and slipped it all off my fingers.  I wiggle my string to make sure it was in the middle, tighten the knot, flipped it over and tied a second knot.

Bezinga...on to the next one.

The pens need to be the smooth kind (no clickers).  You don't need the lid, so throw that part away (I know there should be a use for them, but I haven't been able to think of one).  I found it works best to start at the point.  First I put a ring around where I want the yarn to start and more glue down the barrel of my pen.

I placed a short tail along the glue and started wrapping, covering over the tail as I go down the pen.

When I get to the end of my glue line I just add more glue (I found it to be too much to put all the glue on at once).

I have a tendency to put on too much glue, so mine needed a little bit of time to dry.

While my pens were drying, I made my yarn balls into the pompoms.  You just need to hold those long strings, and cut along the bend.

Once it is cut, fluff it up with your fingers.

Now is the brave your pompom a haircut.  Do it over paper (it will be messy).  The more you cut the tighter the pompom looks.

Finally hot glue those pompoms on to the tops of the pens and you have it!

Thought I would try adding a little jingle bell action to one of the pens.  Next I was thinking I might try beads.
 I actually have one of my to dos....done!  Since I made these not once, but twice I definitely want to link up with 4th Grade Frolics and Monday Made It!  I love looking at everyone's crafty-ness.


  1. Your post reminded me that I bought some of the clear rocks to make magnets and haven't done it yet. Thank you for sharing; they turned out really cute!
    Rockin' and Lovin' Learnin'

  2. Thank you for the step-by-step for the magnets! LOVE, LOVE! I went straight to our local dollar store and bought a bundle.

  3. so cute! thanks for sharing@!!!!!

  4. Have fun making your magnets! Once you get started it's kind-of hard to stop. I am going to start a new batch today myself. I found more fabric I thought would be cute, and I want to try a new font for alphabet rocks.

  5. Those magnets are so cute! I'm gonna have to make those ASAP! Thanks for sharing!

    The Land of I Can

  6. Super cute! I've made the magnets before, and they really are easy which makes them even better. The pens also look awesome!

    1. Come visit and we can make more together! I have to say Rachel how much I am missing your help this year. :)

  7. Replies
    1. They are the stones you find in the floral department to put in vases. Sometimes you have to look around to find the clear ones that are big enough. I got mine at Jo-Anns (but I have gotten them at Michael's, WalMart, and the dollar store before).

  8. Those pens are so cute. They would make great prizes in my library. Lov'n!!!
    Mrs. Brown Loves Bookworms

  9. We loved everything you brought!!! So fun to meet you!!!!!

    1. It was so fun to come! I loved putting faces and names to real people. I feel like I have met a lot of new friends. Bringing stuff....that's the Girl Scout in me. :)