Curiously Strong Fireplace DIY

A fun seasonal project that may not require you to go out and buy a thing. Below is a video going through the process of making one of my favorite DIY Christmas gifts – the Mini Crank Fireplace. I’ve made lots of variations of this through the years, but the fireplace or camp fire is always a favorite. Careful if trying it for yourself – lots of sharp edges and points when cutting tin.

Some non-holiday themes have been burning hearts with found object collage on the top and recycling a greeting card of a huge cat over a city-scape to make “Kitty vs. City: Tin of Destruction”, even a refrigerator and giggling green jello salad! For the fireplace, I’ve used cards, vinyl “stone” floor tile, color prints and even celluclay (photo below) to make the hearth. In this video I choose to use a recycled greeting card and a campfire.

If a photo or print of some kind are used, you can make detachable items for the fireplace like stockings, a tree or garland with felt and attach a magnet strip. A little over-the-top, but so is Christmas. Enjoy!



Small Paintings

Holding the work in-hand while painting changes everything. The interaction is more intimate and allows for the movement of paint across the surface to be manipulated. I also tend to finish smaller paintings more quickly, so they don’t become labored and overworked. These were each given a simple wood lattice frame. Sizes are about 8 inches square and 10 inches square.

Cat’s Cradle Jewelry Holder

Several variations on the the theme of Cat’s Cradle as a holder for a favorite few pieces of jewelry. I always loved the interlaced pattern the string made at this stage of the game. Most are made to hang on the wall or rest on a surface. When resting, the necklace pegs along the bottom of some pieces become ring holders. In order to keep earring hooks from sliding around, I’ve used a variety of techniques. For the one-piece painted metal design, crimp beads were placed and set along the black cord. For others, a pleather cord was used.

A few pieces are usually available on my Etsy page.

MIX Ypsilanti July Artist

Rick Wedel – Form & Function 

For the month of July, painter and MIX Gallery Director Rick Wedel will exhibit new paintings, including figurative and abstract compositions, as well as a few wall mirrors and a table lamp being shown for the first time. Although differing in appearance, both the paintings and functional design explore space, color and texture. 
Join us for an opening First Friday reception

July 7th from 6pm – 9pm

MIX Ypsilanti

130 W. Michian Ave