Archive for December, 2010

Religious arts & crafts

Religious arts & crafts allow artisans and crafters the opportunity to showcase the symbols of their faith, and the opportunity to craft an expression of their faith into tangible form. In this manner, religious arts & crafts provide a way for the faithful to proudly acknowledge their beliefs, and profess their love for their god or gods. Religious arts & crafts usually do this by referring to their religion’s main textual tenants or predominant symbols.

Which religions use arts & crafts to express belief?

Religious arts & crafts, as commonly thought of in western society, is concerned primarily with Christianity. For this reason, the common symbols of Christianity – the cross, fish and loaves, angels, Jesus Christ, etc. – are commonly incorporated into American arts & crafts. Another popular theme is to incorporate scripture quotations. Of course, Christianity does not have a monopoly on religious arts & crafts; arts & crafts are well known within the Jewish tradition, for instance. Jewish arts & crafts typically focus on the most widespread symbols of Judaism, and include the Star of David, menorahs, and other icons of the belief. Jewish sayings are also frequently featured on Jewish arts & crafts.

Ideas for religious arts & crafts

Religious arts & crafts are designed to serve as decoration for one’s home, office, vehicle, or church. Although religious features could be showcased in virtually any type of arts & crafts, these are some popular ideas for religious arts & crafts used for decoration:

1. Beaded Crafts: With a set of beads and string, pipe cleaners or safety pins, the devotee can create cute, creative religious arts & crafts. The possibilities for these crafts are almost endless, and are great for the whole family. These beaded crafts can be designed as jewelry, decorations, and other adornments. Virtually any religious symbol is possible with this versatile craft idea, from the Star of David to the Shroud of Turin.

2. Paint Your Own: Try to let your creative side out and paint your religious items for decoration and display or even for use in a religious service. Special ceramic paints are great to use for painting, decorating, and personalizing ceramic crosses, angels, and even scenes from the Bible. Personalize these paintings with names, birthdays, and scripture to make wonderful personalized gifts.

3. Cross Stitch & Embroidery: While it may take more skill and expertise, with a bit of practice most devotees can become experts and creating needlework arts & crafts. Religious needlework is especially noteworthy as it can combine both graphical images of crosses, angels, doves, and Bible scenes, as well as scripture, Bible verses, and other words of inspiration. Some more popular options for religious arts & crafts using cross stitch and embroidery include religious pillows and Bible covers.

4. Stained Glass Arts & Suncatchers: Stained glass art is popular for religious arts & crafts since stained glass is usually associated with churches and places of worship. This does not mean that you need to be a church to afford stained glass art. Far from it, inexpensive stained glass kits are readily available in most hobby and craft stores, and can be used by those without any previous experience.

5. Ornaments & Window Hangers: Ornaments and window hangers are often quite simple to create – in the absence of specialized skills, all you need is some imagination and a dash of creativity. Ornaments may be designed specifically for the Christmas season, or may be year-round crafts that can be hung anywhere, even from your rearview mirror. Look on the Internet for some fun ideas for religious ornaments, hangers, and other crafts.

6. Handmade Jewelry: Most religious people will happily wear the symbols of their faith as a personal reminder of their faith and devotion. Handmade religious jewelry is very popular, and can include anything from resin angel earrings to homemade metal crucifixes. Brooches, necklaces, and bracelets are also very popular, and while they are generally designed for women, men are becoming increasingly comfortable wearing fine handmade crucifix necklaces.

Looking for resources for making religious arts & crafts

Many arts & crafts shows will feature quite a bit of religious crafts and artwork. While there are rarely shows designed specifically for this niche market, a very high percentage of artisans & crafters feature work that includes a religious focus. If you are not able to attend any shows, do not give up hope. When looking for other ideas for religious arts & crafts, head to your local Christian bookstore or specialty shop. These stores will almost always maintain special sections dedicated to arts & crafts supplies of a religious nature. These stores also typically have arts & crafts ready for purchase and gift giving. If you are more adventurous, go to a hobby and arts & crafts store and convert a secular hobby kit into a testament of your faith.

Mary Amos loves arts and crafts and has been creating beautiful projects for years. See her exciting new ideas for religious arts and crafts at Religious Arts and Crafts, and be sure to visit Arts and Crafts for more fun projects !

Author: Mary Amos
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Are you looking for ways to keep your kids busy during their summer holidays? Keep them creatively entertained for hours with these easy, yet engaging craft activities:

1. Painting Rocks: Your kids will love staying outdoors in your garden or backyard busy painting rocks of garden stones. Supply them with acrylic paints and brushes and let them use their own creative ideas. They could either paint little objects and scenes on larger rocks or paint smaller stones in single or multi colors.

2. Photo Frames: Photo frames can be made and/or decorated in many different ways. Ask kids to choose their favorite summer photos to be framed and supply them with plain plastic or wooden frames. Now ask them to embellish each frame with a theme that matches the photograph. A picture taken on the beach can be displayed in a frame embellished with sand and seashells. A birthday photo can have a frame embellished with birthday clipart, cutouts or stickers.

3. Wrapping Paper: Let your kids make different types of wrapping for use throughout the year to wrap presents for their friends’ and teachers’ birthdays. Give them paint and different household supplies that create various patterns on paper. For e.g. sponge, cut vegetables, carved buttons, jar lids etc. They can also make and store some for Christmas.

4. Bead Crafts: Assorted beads in different colors, shapes and sizes make for interesting craft supplies. Kids can create themed jewelry, bead art, pins and little decorations by stringing beads on to wire and then bending wire to create shapes.

5. Playdough: Homemade playdough is one of the oldest and still the most effective of keeping kids busy. Give the kids a ‘summer project’ to complete before the day ends in which they can make a summer scene or a number of summer themed objects.

Giving these crafts a ‘summer’ theme will not only give the projects an interesting twist, but it will also make your kids enjoy the season and wait for it to arrive soon next year!

For many more crafts for kids, homemade gift ideas and free craft projects, visit

Author: Lata Tokhi
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Jewelry making is one of the finest crafts. It is a great hobby to get into because it will not only give you an opportunity to enjoy fabulous accessories at a cheaper cost but also open a chance at having your own business.

The first and most important thing that you need to think about when planning to start a bead crafts hobby is to find a wholesale supplier of your materials.

Finding a Supplier
Beads wholesale suppliers are widely available. There is no need to be confused about which is better than the rest. You simply need one with all the good stuff you will need for the kind of accessories you are looking to make. But of course, you need to be careful. As a smart shopper, you must ensure that you are getting real good value for your money.

Obviously, you need to single out a concern for quality, durability, and beauty. One will not work without the others. For your beads wholesale quest to be ideal, your purchased items must be long lasting and would not possibly loose their shine in the years to come. Do not let your eyes fool you. A thing for beauty is not enough. You need to be sure that your bead supplies will last a long time of use.

Tips on Finding Bead Suppliers Online
Bead jewelries are in thing now, which is quite good news for aspirant jewelers. Since it is in demand, you have a wide variety of resources to look at, especially online. Naturally, beads wholesale suppliers would claim that they have the best stock. It is your decision and your judgment, however, that really matters. Here are a few tips on how you can find a reliable beads wholesale supplier if you are using the Internet as your prime source:

* Make sure that your source is reputable. A good store to trust is one with a secure checkout.

* See if the items are reasonably priced. There should be a balance between price and quality.

* Examine the stuff in stock. If it is wide and various, you are in good hands. That means, you will have endless choices of styles to make.

* Check out the delivery charges. Make sure that you will not lose savings and profits paying by high amounts in distribution.

* Good customer support is a sign of efficiency. If there will be problems along the way, make sure that there is someone from the supplier’s end who will attend to your concerns.

* Always ask for discounts in case of bulk orders. Haggling, even online, is favorable for your budget.

Follow these links to read more about beads craft or putting up your own beading kit.

Author: Ronny Eriksen
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It is fairly simple to sell your bead crafts for profit on a small scale, as you will likely give some of your creations away, have others on display around your home, or (in the case of jewelry) be wearing some of your favorite pieces out and about. As word gets out, it’s altogether possible that someone will ask you to undertake one or more beading projects for them. This kind of organic growth will produce occasional profits and leave you hungering for more, and while gleaning occasional profits for your hobby is relatively easy, it is significantly more difficult to take it to the next level and turn your hobby into a cottage industry.

I say this not to dissuade you from trying, but only to make clear that selling your bead work for profit on a regular basis is harder than you might think. As with anything worth doing, putting your hobby on a paying basis takes persistence and work. Having said that, if it’s something you’re interested in, I’ll walk you through some of the things you need to be thinking about in order do just that.

If you’re serious about making money with your hobby, the first, best thing you can do is not spread yourself too thin. Settle on 3-4 beading projects you can execute well and feel reasonably sure you can make a respectable profit at. Below, we’ll examine some of the more popular beading projects, and their suitability for your purposes.

Necklaces: Probably the most popular of the beading projects people attempt for profit, and also one of the most difficult to succeed at. If this is where your primary interest lies, then you should know that in order to succeed, you’ll really need to work at carving out a niche for yourself. Try to keep some common, underlying theme to your work. Stay consistent so that your portfolio has a similar “look and feel.” If simple elegance is what you do best, don’t stray far from that in your “for profit” beading projects. On the other hand, if your preference runs to zany, over the top designs, stick with that. Bear in mind that you’ll want to be able to produce your designs in quantity, so keep your patterns simple but unique. A tall order, but by studying the market, you should be able to find a niche.

Bracelets: A smaller market than necklaces, but these beading projects can still be a challenge to break into. One popular niche in the bracelet market is the “mother’s bracelet” A crowded market now, but if you have an innovative approach, that particular line of beading projects can be profitable indeed!

Earrings: Another fabulous line of beading projects, and this one lends itself nicely to profitability. Once you’ve perfected your designs, you can typically produce several pairs of earrings a day, and some capacity for mass production is essential to profitability. Again, however, earrings are a crowded market, so your beading projects will have to have some unique aspect to them in order for you to find profits.

There are other beading projects well suited to profitability, and those will be covered in part two of this article series. To learn more about this and related topics, see Bead Craft

Chris Hartpence and his wife, Christina, live in a small seaside town in South Carolina. Both are lifelong artists and die-hard do-it-yourselfers.

They jointly run the Bead Craft Ideas website, and can be reached at

Author: Chris Hartpence
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Although presumably you can use any kind of needle as a beading needle, if you are serious about the craft you should buy one that is specifically for beading. These types of needles are designed for both simple beading and elaborate beading, and they come in all different sizes and materials. For serious beaders, the types of needles they use can make the difference between a good finished product and one that is anywhere from slightly to very inferior.

To get your needles, visit a craft store, or even better, a beading store. A beading store will have exactly the types of needles that you need for your specific projects and designs, and the people there should be able to help you find the right beading needle for each of your projects. Don’t be afraid to go in and ask questions; these people want your business, and if they give you the right kind of help the first time, they know that you’ll be back when you need more supplies.

Although it may seem strange to you at first, wooden needles often work very well for beading, and well-made wooden needles can last a long time. A stainless steel beading needle can work well too – it really all depends on your preferences. If you are just starting out but are serious about your beading craft, you may want to buy more than one type of beading needle, so that you know that you’ll have the right one for each project that you will be working on.

You can find this article and more like it at []

Author: Renee Flowers
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Making your own beaded cards is a rewarding and fun bead project. Have you been to the bookstore and searched for the card that’s just right for a special occasion, but it’s just not there? There’s an easy solution of course, and that is to make your own.

If, like me, you enjoy bead craft even just adding beads to the ordinary card you find on the shelves can be a quick solution.

There are certain materials you need for your bead project cards, starting with heavy quality paper or card. This can be purchased in many color ranges and can be embossed or patterned. And what is a craft without glue and scissors? These are necessary items for any project. Adhesives available are: glue stick, glue dots, double-sided adhesive tape or adhesive foam pads.

If you are new to beading it won’t be long before you find yourself looking for beads of different sizes and shapes – it’s very addictive. Why not use buttons and bows for your design? If you’re like me and hate to throw things away, that ‘may be useful one day’ item could be just the right thing for your project. You’ve no doubt got a box of old buttons lurking in your sewing box. These can make useful additions to your greeting card too.

Make a collage of different fabrics, stitch them with running stitch in different colors and place beads throughout the design for interest. There are many fabrics you can use such as pieces of old curtain, off-cuts of lace etc. While beads can be glued to your cards you can make small items such as hearts, wedding cake, bell, crown, a vase and so on. Make these small decorations with beads and 28-gauge wire. Attach these to the card with one of the adhesives.

Making beaded cards are your own little masterpieces of art. Have fun coming up with ideas and enjoy the delight on the recipient’s face…it’s sure to stay on the mantelpiece longer than most!

Margie Bell finds beading a satisfying craft and enjoys sharing her passion with others. You can find more ideas at Bead Projects.

Author: Margie Bell
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