Friday, October 22, 2010

Nutty Projects

This year seemed to produce a lot of natural inedibles.

And I figure.... if it's inedible, great, I can't eat it. But I can craft with it, right?

So, first up to bat: Acorns. I know... you can do certain processes to make acorns edible, but I really didn't want to hassle.

I first dried the nuts. I didn't want any funky mold or anything. I did this by just putting them in the oven at 200 degrees for an hour or so. I should have increased the time and decreased the temp, but oh well. I've heard you can also just stick them in the dehydrator.
And, if you look closely, you see my project. PAINT! I plan on gluing these suckers to something (wreath?) and painting the wreath purple. I am excited. Why purple? Well, first of all, I LOVE the color. It's "Blueberry Pie" by Martha Stewart. But secondly, I just thought it'd be different. It'd also make it more of a winter wreath than just a Christmastime wreath. And finally, acorns are naturally a little dusty-looking. Paint gets rid of the dust. So, if they look dusty with the paint, it's because I haven't cleaned.

Close-up view of the purple (below). I only bought a small sample-size can of paint, which set me back less than $3. I'll report back on the coverage of the paint for the size.

Next up? Horse chestnuts. Now these are interesting suckers. Inedible, but GORGEOUS. I mean, the striations on the nuts are just beautiful. Like well-stained mahogany or teak. But, I have a lot of these so who knows. Maybe some will get painted too. That remains to be seen.I'm not sure what I want to do with the chestnuts yet. Another wreath? Maybe. Maybe a sash to go over the windowsill, like a garland? Maybe. It all depends how these suckers look with they dry and how easily they glue down. I do have some extra wood, so building a fake garland wouldn't be that difficult. I think if I try to actually glue them together or to a sash that it would not be that structurally well-built. But we'll see!

So those are the project on the table today and this weekend. I also bought some high-heat paint and was going to (finally) paint that fireplace, but it looks like we're in for a long while of rain. Shucks! I think the plan is to eventually sell the fireplace. As much as we love it, we discovered that we don't do too many fires in the summertime, and our current large firepit really does the trick well. I also like that our firepit has the screen so you can enjoy the fire, but nothing rolls out.

However, the other fireplace was free, so if we spend the manpower and a small amount fixing it up, we should be able to sell it. We'll see!!

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