Category: Art

ArtDIY: Paper Flower Key Holder

If you’re anything like me, you lose your keys. Every. Single. Day. No matter how hard I try, they always go missing just seconds before I am running out the door, already five minutes late. In fact, I even have a spare backup key stashed in my makeup drawer for when they’re really MIA.
 
Finally,
after many tears,
enough was enough.
 
It was time to make a permanent resting place for my keys.
 
Hence, the
Paper Flower Key Holder!
 
 
What You Need:
 
Scissors
Cardboard
Wire Coathanger
Hot Glue Gun
Nail
Stapler
Book or Magazine Pages
Krylon Clear Coat (or any other kind of clear spray paint)
Needle nose pliers
Wire cutters
  
How You Make It:
 
* Cut out a small circle of cardboard, about an inch around. You can vary the size of the cardboard circle depending on how big you want your flower to be.
 
* Cut a piece of coat hanger about 10″ long with the wirecutters. If you use one end that’s already bent, that will save you a lot of trouble rebending the wire, but whatever is easier for you.

* Using the picture above for reference, shape the piece of wire to have two loops at each end: a rounded section for the key hook, and a twisted section to glue onto the cardboard circle.

* Glue the twisted section onto the cardboard circle. (You can feel free to use a ton of glue if need be. Nobody is going to see this part, so be as messy as you want – just make it stick!)

* Next, cut out six big flower shapes from your book or magazine. Consider cool pictures from a travel magazine, or pages from your favorite poet. If you don’t want to ruin a good book or your favorite new magazine, hunt down old books at thrift stores or pretty ads from the pages of your mom’s old Marie Claire magazines – be creative! I used a combination of ads from Glamor and Cosmo magazines I had lying around my apartment because I wanted something colorful and inexpensive.

* Stack all six layers on top of each other and rotate them so the petals stand out at different angles.

* Staple them all together in the center with an “X” shape. By stapling one over another, it makes them stronger and prevents the petals from coming detached from the others.

* Pull up all the layers so they stand up in a 3D shape.

* With another page or scraps of a page you’ve already used, make another smaller “flower” shape with thinner strips for the center of the flower. Hot glue it in the middle to cover the staples and create a full center.

* Before gluing the flower onto the cardboard, coat the flower with a layer of clear spray paint and let it dry.

* Add a few more coats of clear spray paint until the whole flower is crisp and strong. (Note:  I used the glossy kind of spraypaint, and it turned out with a really neat finish. Consider experimenting with different finishes for unique looks.)

* Glue the whole flower to the cardboard circle. Because I happened to have glitter glue, I also decorated the “petals” with some squirts of silver glitter just for fun.

* Once the glue is dry, hang the key holder on the wall.

Ta-da! Enjoy no longer hunting for your keys (for a day or two anyway – lets be realistic).  Not only is this a great way to store your keys, it’s also a wonderful homemade present. It’s quick, cute, and quirky, and the fact that it’s homemade is even cooler.
 
I got the original idea for trying this out from fiskars.com, so check out their own tutorial for more tips and pics! 

ArtPhotoshop Touches Up on Some (Alternate) History

 
There are some things that the U.S. government doesn’t want us to know about, but Pittsburgh-based, NYU film grad Matthew Buchholz is finally clueing everybody in. Well, that’s actually not true, but Buchholz does dream up some pretty convincing re-imaginings of history, with a fantastically off-beat and brilliant sci-fi vision.
 
Map of Washington, DC

The Defeat of General Frankenstein at Bunker Hill
 
Homestead Robot

Photoshop is his medium of choice, with a healthy backdrop of witty, deadpan captions detailing the sci-fi’d, pseudo-historical events depicted in the images. The descriptions alone pack as much punch as the clever pictures; check out his hilarious explanation of the Floating Saucer Crafts and the Chicago Fire, below:
 

“The Great Fire at Chicago, Oct 8th, 1871. The Great Fire commenced on Sunday evening, Oct 8th and continued until Tuesday, Oct 10th, consuming the Business portion of the City, Public Buildings, Hotels, Interstellar trading depots, Newspaper Offices, Rail-Road depots, and extending over an area of Five Square Miles. The fire began when Immigrant Aliens, feeling cheated in a business transaction, took to the skies in their Floating Saucer Crafts and employed their Destructo-Ray. Interstellar Trading was suspended in Chicago soon after the fire.”
 
The Burrowing Beast in Hollywood
 
Prints of his work can be purchased via his Etsy site, as well as cleverly campy greeting cards to brighten up those special days.
 
An Unidentified Floating Craft Above Fifth Avenue
 
Inauguration of Vilnar the Destroyer
 
The Signing of the Declaration of Independence
 
Pittsburgh Zombie Outbreaks: A Map
Zombies in Schenley Park
 
This is just a taste of Buchholz’s willdy entertaining collection, so check out his website to witness beer-guzzling sea-nuisances, monstrous, banana-loving ape-creatures, a giant Andrew Carnegie wreaking havoc on his beloved Pittsburgh, and good old-fashioned zombies galore.
Now I just need someone I know to get pregnant so I can send her this awesome card.
 
 (images courtesy of renegadehandmade and alternatehistories)

ArtLashing Out: These Falsies Aren’t Fooling Anybody

 
I’ve worn my fair share of fake eyelashes in my day, but the new paper eyelashes by Paperself are a whole new genre of eye enhancement.
 

 
Inspired by the Chinese art of paper-cutting, these intricate beauties will definitely get you some attention. Very Lady Gaga, no?
 
 

 

 
 

My two favorites have to be the “Deer and Butterfly” and “Peacock” (above). I kind of love how the antlers mimic real lashes, with a touch of whimsy.

These one-of-a-kind faux lashes come in two sizes; the bigger one goes for a dramatic lash line takeover, while the smaller one, below, lets you get creative. Keep it classic(ish) with an outer corner application, or go bold with a full set on top and the smaller size on the bottom outer corner for über-drama.
 

Now, the Paperself site recommends using the little guys to “accentuate the corners of your eyes…for a subtle daytime look.” I would never choose subtlety as a descriptor here. Unless your day job is under the big top, let’s stick to costume parties.
 
DJ duo The Broken Hearts modeling their “Under the Sea” collaboration 

I’ve got to ask, is this a trend with staying power, or just too bizarre for non-Fame Monsters?

 

ArtOff the Wall: Art by Shawn Smith

 
Do not adjust your screen; you are seeing this just right. Why, it’s just the work of Shawn Smith, the Texas based sculptor!
 
Using everyday imagery trapped inside a pixelated view, Smith works as a human 3-D modeling system. By meticulously putting together small blocks of ink-stained wood, the fragmented images are full of movement and a computerized sense of life.
 

 
  The close-up on “Schrodinger’s Hat” (2009) is absolutely incredible. At only 22″ tall, you can imagine how tiny these little blocks are!
 
 
This fox is one of my favorite pieces by Smith; the wide range of tones are so perfectly placed that the image seems to flatten into 2D.
 
A close-up of “Everett” (2008) reveals a network of color that is bewildering, but absolutely wonderful.

ArtTattoos: Inspirational Body Art

From the bronze age to the 20th century, tattoos and piercings have been a form of self-expression for centuries. Their meaning and impact varies from culture to culture; and by their very nature, they are a timeless art. Each individual tattoo or piercing sets you apart from every one else in the world and lets you show your creativity and express your emotions and ideals.

 
 
The source of inspiration for this blog were the many examples of body art floating about the Lulu*s warehouse. I simply had to show them off!
 
Check some of our employees’ tats below: 
 
 
 
  Anna, Packer
“My feather tattoo represents my heritage and background. I am part Aztec Indian, and this tattoo represents a part of who I am and reminds me where I came from.”
 
  
 
Anissa, Processor
“The tattoo on my ankle is the Chinese symbol for strength. It represents the strength I was forced to develop when I was a teen mother and preparing myself for all of the responsibilities associated with that role. It reminds me of how strong I was during a time when I was very overwhelmed with how fast life was approaching me and how that courage was worth everything.”
 
  
 
Nikki, Shoe Inventory Specialist
Nikki wanted to focus on two of her tattoos for this blog. The first is the series of roses on her left arm. “Three has been a very symbolic number in my life. In a way, the number symbolizes me being a strong woman and how I became the person I am today. I chose red because it symbolizes power and that color brings the whole tattoo together of representing my powerful self.”

The second tattoo Nikki wanted to share was a large one on the left side of her torso. “This is my mom’s senior portrait. She will forever be part of me and she has played an important role in my journey of life and discovering who I am. The quote below my mom is from ‘The Great Gatsby,’ and it basically symbolizes being who you are, never being ashamed of where you come from and the importance of self-worth.”
 
 
 
Kellen, Operations Manager  
“The words on my right wrist say ‘Caller 10.’ It is a song by Punchline and is about how fate leads you to your soul mate and how important it is to never lose sight of this. I found my soul mate, and my husband has this album cover tattooed on him. These tattoos represent the meaning of love and the beauty associated with my marriage.” Aww :)
 
 
  
Liz, Shipper
“Kurt Vonnegut Jr. is my favorite author. His writings have changed my life in many profound ways, so I got this tattoo to symbolize how much his writings have influenced my life. It is dedicated to my favorite author.”   
 
 
 
Matt, Receiving Manager
“The tattoo on my left arm is of two eagles and a tree. The two eagles represent strength and courage and the tree represents creation. I love nature and all things pure, so I thought it would be great to get a tattoo that brings together all of the sides of my personality.”
 

Holly, Customer Service
“On the left side of my torso, I have a large dragon fly. When I was younger, I was very sick and my mother gave me a dragonfly necklace to keep me strong. Since then, every time something catastrophic happens to me that I survive from, I get a dragon fly tattooed on me. I currently have four.”
 
 
Stephanie, Blogger Relations
“I wanted to talk about a tattoo on my left arm that represents a very meaningful relationship in my life. My best friend’s last name is Fox, and I got a picture of a fox to represent the important role this friend has had in my life. She is not only a best friend, she is a sister to me.”
 
 
Cara, Blog Coordinator & Stylist
 “I choose the tattoo behind my ear because it’s one of my most meaningful tattoos and it represents someone who has changed my life for the better. I got it as a friendship tattoo - she got a fox because that is my last name, and I chose a crown because her name means ‘crowned.’ I couldn’t ever imagine her not in my life, as she is truly part of my family.”
 
 What great stories! For those of you who want some self-expression of your own, you can always consider the less permanent approach of henna and realistic temporary tats.
 
Do any of you have any tattoos?