Fornasetti Inspired Tattooed Plaster Hands

I finally decided to make a set of Fornasetti inspired decorative plaster hands using a tutorial I saw with rubber dishwashing gloves.  These would be great for displaying jewelry or just to have as a conversation piece on your table.  Either way, they are super fun to make and I think they look fantastic!  Hey, when you get a chance, google Piero Fornasetti and see his amazing body of work.  I think you’ll love it.

My trio of tattooed hands!

I can’t decide where to put them in my house

Some pieces by Fornasetti (one of my favorite designers)

Plaster of Paris
Clip art images
Staple gun
Rubber gloves

 Draw a 3″ diameter circle on the scrap wood
Drill a hole on the circle’s edge so that you can insert the jigsaw blade
Cut out the circle with the jigsaw
Staple the rim of the rubber glove to the cut out hole

 Fill the matching glove with water and pour it in a mixing bowl
Add the plaster until it is the consistency of pancake batter
Pour it in the glove, squeeze out any bubbles, and let dry overnight
Cut out the clip art images

 Remove the plaster hand from the rubber glove *You’ll have to cut it off
Paint the plaster hand with the Americana Multi-Surface Satin in Cottonball (white)
Spray the images with the E-6000 Spray Adhesive
*Clip around the images so that they lay flat on the curved areas of the hand
Coat everything with Minwax Polycrylic and let dry


Tony Duquette Inspired Faux Coral

Not sure if you know this, but Tony Duquette is one of my all time favorite designers.  He loved coral and malachite and was an incredible designer.   Today we’re taking twigs from the back yard to create beautiful faux coral centerpieces perfect for your next dinner party.  When they’re not in the middle of the table, put them on your mantle and enjoy their beauty!  Now get outside and grab some twigs.  You’re going to love making this project.

Tony Duquette also loved malachite 

I decided to have a little absinthe while I was taking my photos (kidding)

Fish tank rocks
Large plastic lid
White glue
Hot glue gun
Pearls (optional)

Score your lid with a sharp object like a craft knife
Hot glue your twigs to the base with a generous amount of glue to create your coral
Apply a generous amount of white glue to the twigs with a paintbrush
Sprinkle with fish tank rocks and let dry

Paint the coral with the Dark Scarlet and Lipstick
Using E-6000, glue seashells and pearls to the base of the coral
Paint any exposed lid with the Glorious Gold metallic paint


Art Deco Inspired Jewelry DIY

Dig around your tool box (or head to the hardware store) to make these fashion forward, art deco inspired necklaces.  I used cabochons, but you could use gems or even semi-precious stones.  Put it all together with 
E-6000 and you’ll be right on trend!

Super chic necklace with turquoise cabochons

….Another in pink and purple!

Corner brackets
Jump rings and lobster claw closure
Wire cutters
Piece of scrap wood

Drill a small hole on the corner of the corner bracket
Cut 7 to 8 pieces of chain about 5″ long
Attach the chains to a jump ring and then to the hole on the corner of the corner bracket

Add chain to the sides of the corner bracket to create your necklace
Experiment with your cabochons to create your design
Glue on the cabochons with E-6000 and let dry for at least 2 hours



The Cutest Button Jars DIY

With just a little chalky finish paint and some black cord, you can have an entire set of button jars to organize everything from your sewing accessories to your beading supplies!   Why not make an extra set to give as a gift this holiday season.  I’m sure your friends will love it!

My new sewing supply jars

This set of jars is cuter than a kitten riding a puppy.

Scrap wood
Jars with metal lids
Sanding block or sandpaper
Black cord

 Hit your lids with a hammer to give them an aged/beat up look
*Not too much, they still need to fit on your jars
Mark your holes and drill them
Paint the lids with black chalky finish paint

After the black paint is dry, rub wax along the edges and dents on the lid
Paint the lids again in different colors
Lightly sand the lids to expose the black paint on the dents and edges
Thread with the black cord
Tie a knot on the underside of the lid


Danielle’s Beautiful Butterfly Cape DIY

I’m not sure if you know this (how could you?) but my assistant Danielle LOVES capes!  The other day she came to work wearing one with feathers.  That’s how we roll here at Mark Montano Inc.  This cape is not only chic, it’s one-pattern piece for both the fabric and lining, so it’s super easy to cut and sew.  Oh, all of the butterfly appliqués are put on with E-6000 Stitchless and Fabri-Fuse.  If you’re looking for a smashing piece for your fall wardrobe, look no more!

Danielle wearing her new cape

Sewing machine
1 1/2 yards of 60″ wide fabric
1 1/2 yards of 60″ wide lining
1/2 yard of butterfly print fabric
Straight pins
Measuring tape

 Fold your fabric in half lengthwise
Fold down one end 13″
Measuring 4″ from the corner, draw a 1/4 circle and cut it out
*This will be your neckline
Unfold the fabric and cut up the 9″ fold

 Place the cut fabric on top of the lining and pin all the way around
Cut the lining so it matches the cut fabric
Stitch both pieces together using 1/2 seam allowance and leaving an 8″ wide hole
*The hole is so that you can turn it right side out
Clip all of the corners and around the curve of the neckline
Turn right side out and press flat

Cut out several fabric butterflies
Figure out your placement on the cape
Coat the backs of the butterflies with E-6000 Stitchless and iron in place

Glue sequins on the butterflies with E-6000 Fabri-Fuse to give them more sparkle
Glue a 2″ long piece of Velcro the to cape for a closure
Hand stitch the 8″ long hole closed
Let everything dry overnight



The Cutest Acorn Dish Toppers (diy)

Make these super cute acorn dish toppers in any size or color for pennies using cardboard and twigs from your backyard.  It’s time to start decorating for fall and these would look wonderful on your table!  Make a few extra and fill them with treats for the holidays to give as gifts. Have fun!

My acorn candy dish trio (of course I’ve eaten all the candy already)

I use them on top of 99c store candles and I LOVE the way they look

Try mixing candles and candies for a fun table setting

Craft knife
Cutting mat
Glass dishes
Pinking shears
White glue
Hot glue gun
Brown fabric or faux suede

 Cut about 15 1/2″ wide strips of cardboard
Rub them along a table edge to give them a curve
Hot glue the end of a strip to a small twig
Wrap the cardboard around the twig to the end, tape on another piece and continue until you have the lid size that you need.
*Usually about 1/4″ larger than the mouth of the glass piece you’re pairing it with
Hot glue the end of the last piece on the coil

Gently press the center of the coil upward to create a dome
Paint white glue on the inside of the dome/lid to keep it in place
When dry, paint the lid in Burnt Sienna and then dry brush it in a Rich Espresso Dazzling Metallic

When dry, cut out fabric leaves with pinking shears and hot glue them to the twig.

Perfect Decoupage Wall Art

Need some new art for your pad and can’t afford the real stuff?  Maybe you want a holiday gift you can personalize for people?  These decoupage art pieces couldn’t be easier to make and the chalky finish painted boarders are the perfect way to accentuate the colors your favorite works of art.  I’m also going to share with you my fail-safe decoupage method which will  insure that all of your images are perfectly flat every time.  Have fun!

A collection of my favorite paintings

One of my favorite artists….Heather Galler
She has an Etsy shop and sells her amazing prints

Print out of your art
Pine wood pieces that fit your art
Sanding block
Krylon Metallic Paint Pen

Mark evenly around your wood piece and with your Dremel, create a scalloped design along the edge
Rub wax along your design
Paint the top of your wood piece in chalky finish
Paint the scalloped edge in another color of chalky finish

When dry, sand the edges of the scallop to weather and expose the wood
Figure out the placement of your print out
Spray the top of the print out with water
Spray the back with E-6000 Spray Adhesive

Carefully place your print on your painted wood and press it flat
Draw out your stencil pattern on the top and bottom of the print
Fill it in with DecoArt Dazzling Metallics
Edge the print with a metallic gold Krylon Short Cuts pen


Beautiful Handmade Paper DIY

Many of you have asked how to make handmade paper since I started posting photos of my own.  Well, here you go!  I have two friends who inspired my paper making obsession. The first is Arnold Gummer who is a paper making genius!  The second is my friend Robert Mahar who gave me the skinny on how to create

my own screens from inexpensive
Ikea frames and by-the-yard plastic screen from the hardware store.

A rainbow of colors

My favorite color… using marigold petals and leaves from my yard

Golden yellow and pinks with flower petals, large chunks of newsprint and gold flakes

2 flat frames
2 rubber bands
Newspaper or any recycled paper
Americana Acrylics (to color your pulp)
Plastic screen (1 yard should be plenty)
Large bin
Staple gun
Glitter, leaves, flower petals, gold leaf flakes

Remove the glass and cardboard from your frames, you only need the frame
 Cut two pieces of screen the exact size of your frame
Staple one piece of screen to the flat side of one frame making sure it’s taut
Sandwich the stapled screen in between both frames with a rubber band
*Flat sides together

Rip up about 2 sheets of newspaper or several sheets of copy paper
Fill your blender 3/4 full with water
Add Americana Acrylic Paint to the water
Blend until the paper becomes pulp
*It will look cloudy

 Pour the contents into a bin and add more water if you want
With the plain frame on top, scoop the pulp from the bin catching it on top of the stapled screen
Carefully remove the top frame and place the extra piece of screen on top of the pulp
Using a sponge, remove as much water as you can from the pulp
Carefully peel the flat, wet pulp from the screen and place it between two sheets of newspaper

Place a pressing cloth on the newspaper and iron the flat pulp until it’s dry and becomes a sheet of beautiful paper
*You can also let your pieces dry naturally overnight


Striped Pom Pom Scarf DIY

Need a fun scarf to spruce up your fall wardrobe?  Why not make one in minutes with stripes and pom poms!  These are so easy to make, you might want to make a few and wrap them for the holidays.  No need to sit there and stitch on each pom pom either.  E-6000 Fabri-Fuse makes it as easy as 1-2-3!

Danielle sprucing up her basic jean jacket!


Sewing machine
Pom Poms
E-6000 Fabri-Fuse
2 yards striped fabric

 Fold your fabric and measure 12″ to 14″ inches along the length

 Cut it out

 Zigzag stitch along the edge using a wide stitch

 Glue pom pons along the edge of the scarf

Allow to dry overnight


Easy Marbling For Halloween!

I love anything marbled….ANYTHING!  This year I decided to share my secret technique for marbling and show you how to use it on some real and fake pumpkins.  Once you master this, I promise you’ll be addicted.  Happy Chic Halloween!

My Halloween table setting


5″ deep plastic bin
Glass dishes
Krylon metallic gold spray paint
Rubbing alcohol

Paint your pumpkins with the Americana Decor Chalky Finish in Carbon (black)
Clean your glass dishes with rubbing alcohol
Paint the dishes with the black Americana Gloss Enamel
Bake the glass dishes twice for 30 minutes letting the oven cool in between baking times
*This will make them dishwasher safe

Fill your bin with water
Spray a small amount of Krylon metallic gold spray paint on top of the water
Quickly roll your object from one end of the water to the other to pick up the gold paint
Let everything dry on newspaper