Tuesday, March 12, 2019

Elysian Studios Now Closed. Please Visit My New Website

Elysian Studios is permanently closed.
For original fine art, prints, and illustrations, please visit my new website:

Saturday, February 1, 2014

DIY Broncos Sports Team Color Can Coolers For the Super Bowl

DIY Team Color Can Coolers 

We're getting ready to celebrate the big game, and cheer our Denver Broncos on to a Super Bowl XLVIII victory!  What better way to add to the festivities than with handmade can coolers for the party?

For this easy tutorial, I have used all Martha Stewart craft paints and tools, which are readily available at Michael's Arts and Crafts Stores.  These were provided to me by Plaid paints for a campaign I worked on in 2012.  You can see that post here.  All of the opinions expressed about the products are completely my own.  I made three different styles of coolers, two in each style. The foam coolers are available at any craft store. I made each cooler unique by switching up the colors a bit, so each party guest can easily identify their beverage.

Let's get craftin'!

DIY Can Coolers Supplies 

For the first style, which you can see in the front center of the title photograph, I used Martha Stewart's Adhesive Stencils, the Foam Dauber Set, Satin Craft Paint in blue, white and two colors of the Coarse Glitter Paint. I found lots of inspiration for patterns on Pinterest.  You can follow my Pinterest boards here.

Using Martha Stewart Stencils 1 

Place the letters on the cooler to spell out your saying.  I really like these stencils because they give your project unique, uniform lettering and can be reused.  I was short on the "O" for my saying, so I was able to easy move that letter around during painting.

Using Martha Stewart Stencils 2 

Pour the paint colors onto a disposable plate and use the small size dot of the dauber set to begin painting dots all around the stencils.

Using Martha Stewart Stencils 3 

Once you have dotted all of the colors around, peel off the stencils.  Rinse them in water to clean and place back on their plastic film from the package.  I thought I wanted the letters to be multi-colored, but you really couldn't read them, so I ended up re-painting the letters in solid blue.  Don't let the paint get too dry before you lift off the stencil or the paint will come off with the stencil.

Using Martha Stewart Stencils 4 

For the second style, I used the same paints, but tried out the Martha Stewart Patterned Brush Set.  These coolers are on the left side of the title photo.

Using Martha Stewart Multi Tip Brush Set 1 

I have mixed feelings about this brush set, and I'd love to hear from other crafters who may have used it.  It looks fun and full of promise, but I found the results to be underwhelming.  Using the brushes saves a bit of time because you get two or three lines per stroke.  However, I found them hard to load paint onto the bristles, and they really didn't give any more consistent lines or spacing than a single brush.  In the end, I do like the bold, simple plaid pattern of this cooler.

Using Martha Stewart Multi Tip Brush Set 2 

Using the largest two-stripe brush, first paint vertical stripes of blue and allow to dry.  I really like the Martha Stewart Satin Craft Paints, because they come in a beautiful array of colors, give nice even coverage, and dry pretty quickly.  Since I had to quickly paint over my first layer for this pattern, however, I used a hair dryer to speed along the drying process!

Using Martha Stewart Multi Tip Brush Set 13 

Next use the smaller two-stripe brush to paint horizontal stripes in white all around the cooler.  I also used the same method to paint a second cooler, but used the two glitter paints instead.

Using Martha Stewart Multi Tip Brush Set 4 

Though I really love the sparkle of glitter, I had uneven results with the Martha Stewart Coarse Glitter Paint.  The glitter is actually suspended in a clear binder, which is great because that prevents it from easily flaking off.  However, the paint doesn't apply easily and smoothly, as you can see in the image above.  The paint kind of smooshes to the sides and the glitter is unevenly distributed.  I found that with multiple coats I was able to achieve the results I was after.

Using Martha Stewart Foam Dot Stamp Set

For fun, I decided to add some blue dots with the largest dot size in the dauber set.

Using Martha Stewart Foam Dot Stamp Set 

To finish this cooler, I added white dots in the medium size dauber from the set. I really love how easily I can get consistent dots in different sizes with this set!

Using Martha Stewart Writing Nozzle Set 

For the last style, I simply used the Satin Craft Paint and the Fine Tip Writer Nozzle Set.  This set lets you simply twist on a fine tipped nozzle to any of the Martha Stewart Craft Paints.  The paint bottle on the left is a Metallic Glass Paint, which already comes with a fine-tipped nozzle.

using Martha Stewart Writing Nozzle Set 2 

I love how these tips allow you to quickly and easily create fine lines with any of the craft paints.  This finished cooler can be seen on the right side of the title photograph.  For this pattern, make three vertical lines in blue, about 1/2 inch apart, and then one vertical line in white, about 1/2 inch from the last blue line.  Continue with this pattern around the cooler.

using Martha Stewart Writing Nozzle Set 3

After you have completed the initial lines of the pattern, draw multiple diagonal lines within the borders of the vertical lines.  Alternate their directions so they form a chevron pattern.  Alternate two rows of blue lines and two rows of white lines.

using Martha Stewart Writing Nozzle Set 4

Here's another look at the completed set:

DIY Team Color Can Coolers

I am posting this shortly before the big game, but it really is a great craft to show team spirit for any sports team during any season!

We're filling up our coolers with sodas and Colorado microbrew beers, like these from Tommyknocker Brewery in nearby Idaho Springs for our Super Bowl party, and we'll use them for many more seasons to come!


Wednesday, January 29, 2014

DIY Broncos Team Colors Superbowl Felt Wreath

DIY Team Colors Wreath


See how I made this colorful felt wreath to show off our team spirit in this easy tutorial:

I love the soft texture and the bright colors of this wreath.  You can change up the colors for any team or holiday.  It's also a great craft to have the kiddos help out!

Have fun, and GO BRONCOS!

Friday, January 24, 2014

Caught on Instagram: Crafting Broncos Super Bowl Spirit

The Denver Broncos are the AFC Champions this year and headed to the Super Bowl!

It's time to get our team craft on....

Some serious Broncos crafts will be made in our house over the next two weeks as we get ready to cheer for our team at the Superbowl!
photo by @elysianstudios on Instagram

I realized last weekend, that I had not stocked up on enough Broncos gear before the big AFC Championship game.  I am from Indiana, so I've been a big Colts fan for years, and an especially big fan of Peyton Manning!  After Peyton moved to Denver, we retired most of our Colts attire, and have been slowly replacing it with Broncos gear. But now we're in the Super Bowl, and it's time to get serious!

I've raided our local craft stores and am making room for more orange and blue around our house and in my wardrobe.

First up: a crocheted scarf...

Picking up #crochet for the first time to make a #Broncos inspired scarf in time for the Super Bowl!
photo by @elysianstudios on Instagram

I've taken up the knitting needles before, but never the crochet hook.  I knew I needed a bold, cozy scarf pronto, so crochet was the only way to go.  Luckily, Michael's had a great yarn sale this week, too!  Score!

Here comes the orange! It's becoming hard to stop- Can't wait to have the #Broncos scarf finished! #crochet #unitedinorange
photo by @elysianstudios on Instagram

I followed this easy YouTube tutorial by Tracy Nguyen and just switched it from two colors to three.  I love the scarf, and I'm making the same pattern in more colors to get me through the end of winter.  I am totally hooked on crochet!  

Finally finished my crocheted Broncos infinity scarf! It is really cozy and was super easy to make! I see more colors of the same pattern in my future...
photo by @elysianstudios on Instagram

So with all the hooking and looping, the Rainbow Loom was calling my name.  We originally got one of these to craft with my niece, but we soon realized how awesome the rubber bracelets and necklaces are!  Even my boys came up with guy colors for cool bracelets.  Of course I needed a few orange and blue bracelets to add to my stack!

Adding a few Broncos colored bracelets to my stack courtesy of the Rainbow Loom....
photo by @elysianstudios on Instagram

Warning, even though Rainbow Loom Jewelry Made Easy! looks easy, one falsely looped band sends the whole project to "ppbbllllt!"  It's not too hard to get a complicated pattern to work though, and I love the way these bracelets turned out.  Don't hesitate to mix these fun,colorful bracelets in with your nicer jewelry!  I stacked mine with an artisan leather bracelet, but a sterling silver bracelet would look great too!

I love mixing high and low fashion- fun rubber rainbow loom bracelets in team colors (Go Broncos!!) look great with my artisan leather bracelet and a sparkly rhinestone wrapped bangle. The rainbow loom isn't just for kids! :-)
photo by @elysianstudios on Instagram

I have a few more team craft ideas to share, and I better get going!  The big game is only a week away!  Of course, you can be a fan all year round!

Sneak peek of the next craft:

#crafting a fun, easy #Broncos inspired #wreath in time for Super Bowl Sunday! Video tutorial coming soon!

I'm sharing how to make this easy wreath in team colors in a video tutorial ! Watch it here on YouTube, and...


Want to keep up with my crafting adventures?  Be sure to follow me on Instagram!  See you there!

Thursday, January 23, 2014

Elysian Studios Featured in The Polymer Arts Magazine

Polymer Arts Magazine Winter 2013

I'm very proud to announce that one of my original art jewelry bracelets has been published in
The Polymer Arts Magazine Winter 2013 issue!

The Silk and Stones bracelet was chosen to be featured in The Polymer Jeweler's Workbench: Creative Clasps Make for a Classy Closure article.  The Polymer Arts is a magazine for jewelry artists, and is full of inspiring articles about technique, emerging artists and art business.  I highly recommend this magazine for artists working with polymer clay.  The Polymer Arts is not available on newsstands, but both print and digital issues can be purchased online at www.thepolymerarts.com 

Here is a look at my bracelet featured in the magazine:

Elysian Studios featured in Polymer Arts Magazine

The Silk and Stones bracelet has been purchased, but you can see what bracelets are currently available in the Art Jewelry Bracelet section of the Elysian Studios online shop!

I will continue to work with polymer clay, adding unique and original components to my handmade jewelry designs.  Look for new additions to the shop in the near future!  In the meantime, I'll be exploring new techniques that I am learning from The Polymer Arts Magazine!

Friday, January 17, 2014

Celebrating the New Year with the Top Posts from the Last

Happy 2014!

There are great things in store for Elysian Studios this coming year, but it's not too late to look back at the fun we had in 2013!

These were the 10 most popular blog posts from the Elysian Studios blog last year:

Top 10 Posts of  2013

Please click the links to read the full posts:

2013 was a great year! I had the chance to really grow as an artist, and I look forward to creating more original paintings and handmade jewelry in 2014.  I will also keep snapping photos on Instagram, and will share a tutorial or two to spark your creativity and inspire you to add artful elements into your home.  Thank you so much for all of your continued support and encouragement- I couldn't do this without you!

Want to see more of the best posts from Elysian Studios?

 Wishing you all the best in 2014!

Monday, January 13, 2014

Elysian Studios at West Elm Denver January Etsy Pop-Up Shop Event

West Elm Denver Cherry Creek

It was a fun Saturday afternoon in Denver's
Cherry Creek Shopping District last Saturday when Elysian Studios had a Pop-Up Shop inside West Elm!

West Elm values handmade products and the small businesses that create them.  Every month they invite local artisans to come into their store to share their products. I was able to display my original paintings and handmade jewelry, and connect with new customers!

Enjoy a photo tour of the event:

West Elm Denver Cherry Creek West Elm Denver Cherry Creek West Elm Denver Cherry Creek Elysian Studios at West Elm Denver Elysian Studios at West Elm Denver Elysian Studios at West Elm Denver Elysian Studios at West Elm Denver

It was a lot of fun, and the staff made me feel right at home in the store.  I hope to have the opportunity to join them for more Etsy Pop-Up Shop events in the future.  I will be sure to keep you posted if I do!

Having my shop set up like this is a special treat, but it is always available online at www.elysianstudiosart.com where you can shop for original art, handmade jewelry, prints and note cards.  Shop anytime, from anywhere!

Thursday, January 9, 2014

Elysian Studios Invited to Etsy Pop-Up Shop Event at West Elm Denver Cherry Creek

Elysian Studios Pop Up Shop Invite

Elysian Studios Modern Fine Art and Accessories

I've been invited to set up an Etsy Pop-Up Shop 
this Saturday from 12-4pm!

What an exciting opportunity to showcase my original paintings and handmade jewelry in the beautiful, modern setting of West Elm-
It will be a great match! 

West Elm has made an impressive commitment to directly support artisans that use handcrafted techniques in their work.  Read more about their handcrafted stories.  I am so proud to be a little part of that story, and to have a national company with such a wonderful reputation support my handmade business.

Take a look at some of the fresh products West Elm is offering in their catalog this month:

West Elm January 2014 Catalog

West Elm January 2014 Catalog

West Elm January 2014 Catalog

West Elm January 2014 Catalog

Beautiful, isn't it?  Their store is lovely, especially set in the quaint Denver neighborhood of Cherry Creek North, which is bustling with all kinds of gorgeous galleries and home design shops.

Come down this Saturday, January 11 from 12-4pm and say "Hi!" I'd love to meet you there!