Monday, February 25, 2013

Soda Can Rubbing Plates

Transfer images onto aluminium soda cans to create rubbing plates.  Use images of any theme - favourite characters, letters and numbers, nature prints, textures, etc.. Create a collection and use as an indoor creative activity.

Upcycle soda can rubbing plate

You will need the following materials.
1. Clean, empty soda can.
2. Cutting tool.  I used shears I purchased from the dollar store.
3. Masking tape to tape down the finished plate and prevent cuts.  Duct tape would work as well.
4. Printed images to be transferred to plate.
5. Ball point pen.
6. Recycled cardboard.  This will be used as backing when transferring the images and also for the finished plate.

Caution.  Please work carefully with tools and materials to avoid injury.

Upcycle soda can rubbing plate

Remove the top end of the soda can using a cutting tool or can opener.  Cut down the side to the bottom of the can.  Remove the bottom end of the can.

You should now have a rectangular piece of aluminium.  Flatten out this piece and tape, design side up, onto a piece of cardboard. Lay your image over the aluminium and secure with tape.  Using a ball point pen, begin to trace the design, pushing down with heavy pressure.

Upcycle soda can rubbing plate

Remove paper image after tracing is complete.  Go over any lines that may need additional detailing.  Remove the aluminium rectangle from the cardboard backing and trim it down to the size of the image, maintaining the rectangular shape.  Flip the piece so that the clean inside of the can is facing upward.  Tape the piece on all four sides onto a piece of cardboard.  Please ensure that all edges are sealed to prevent cuts while using the plate.

Note.  For letters, words, numbers and other writings, reverse the image prior to printing them out.  This is to ensure that the resulting rubbing plate will be printed in the right direction (unless you intentionally want mirror image text).

Your plate is now ready for rubbing.  Place a piece of paper on top of the plate and rub over the image with a drawing tool.  This process works best with broken crayon pieces that has the wrapper peeled off.   Lay the crayon flat on its long side and rub across with even pressure.

Upcycle soda can rubbing plate

Upcycle soda can rubbing plate

Thursday, February 21, 2013

Gold ChocolateTreasure at End of Candy Rainbow

There's gold at the end of this rainbow.  Make a rainbow with colourful candies and place a gold coin on a fluffy marshmallow cloud at the end.

Gold ChocolateTreasure at End of Candy Rainbow

Here are the materials you will need.

1. Rainbow colored candies.  I used Skittles.  You can play with candies of different colors, shapes, and sizes.

2. White marshmallow.  If you do not have this, you can leave it out or use tissue paper.

3. Gold wrapped candy, chocolate, or a copper or gold coin.

4. Clear cellophane wrapper.  I used a pretzel wrapper because that is what I had on hand and the narrowness of the bag helps to hold the different colors of candies in place.

Skittles Candy, marshmallow, gold chocolate

Sort your candies into the colors of the rainbow.  Place the marshmallows at the bottom layer.  Add the "gold".  If you want to hide the gold, then add some more marshmallows.  Add the purple candy to to the top of the marshmallow.  Repeat this process until the last group of candy is added. 

While adding the candies, I left my bag at the horizontal position to keep each layer from blending in to the next layer as much as possible.  Slide each group of candies towards the bottom of the bag until it is snug against the next layer.

Skittles Candy, marshmallow, gold chocolate

Tie a ribbon or gift tag to seal the bag and keep the candies snug inside.

Skittles Candy, marshmallow, gold chocolate

St. Patrick's Day is such a fun day and you don't need to be Irish to join the fun.

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Pretzel-Rollo-M&M Valentine's Day Treat

Here's a quick last minute Valentine's Day treat you can whip up quickly.  A friend of mine made this for our kids and I had to share this neat idea.

Pretzel Rolo m&m valentine's day treat

Here are the ingredients.

1. small pretzels.  Can be the traditional, square of any other shape.
2. Rollo's - because they are the perfect shape and they have yummy caramel inside.
3. m&m's - include these in any treat and they just make them more special.

Stack the ingredients in the given order from top to bottom on a cookie sheet.  Bake at 350 for 10 second intervals to melt the three layers together.  Please keep an eye on them so they don't over heat.  Let stand at room temperature to solidify.

I also tried experimenting with the microwave and put the treat in for 10 seconds the first time and at 5 second intervals each subsequent times.

This treat has just the right contrast of savoury and sweet flavour and chewy and crispy texture.