With so many DIY ideas and projects we find ourselves totally inspired to get our hands dirty! Unfortunately, we often find ourselves frustrated wondering what we did wrong and why it doesn’t look like the one on the picture! I’m here to tell you that in crafting and DIY projects, sometimes things can be too good to be true! I’ve had my share of “mishaps” (if you can call them that, because technically I was following instructions!) and I will be sharing them with you under a new Category Called: Good Ideas… Bad Ideas! That way you won’t waste your time and your supplies, because there is nothing more upsetting than wasting perfectly good supplies!
If you analyze these, you’ll probably share the thought of “I could’ve told you that!” (no worries, I do it to myself all the time!) but truth be told, even the most experienced crafters might not think of these little/big details, only because they are not mentioned on the instructions. We are always so eager to get started we just don’t stop and think! Is as simple as that! But sometimes, not thinking can cause you!
#1 Cork & Hot Glue
DIY wine cork projects can be found left and right on the web, I personally love them! You can do anything with them once you master the art of cutting them. They are extremely versatile, they can hold and withstand water, cold and heat pretty well, making them great for almost any household DIY project.
Bad Idea: Cork surfaces can hold heat so well, that your hot glue will take longer to dry and remain extremely hot and liquid for longer than expected! The wonderful thing about hot glue is that it dries almost instantly allowing you to work at a fast speed. Caution, when working with cork and hot glue you can’t work at a fast speed because you’ll find yourself with a VERY HOT LIQUID glue that drips like water and can cause you a 3rd Degree Burn (…and that my friends HURTS! ).
Good Idea: The key here is to take your time, or use a different adhesive method, which ever you prefer. Cold glue guns will dry before you can really use them so they are not good for cork surfaces. Hot glue guns will work great, just be careful and remember to wait until your glue is completely dry before moving your object to avoid a burn.
#2 Elmer’s Glue on Canvas
When you search on Pinterest for this, you will be amazed as to how many things you can “do”, but look carefully. The search pulls up much more than just “Elmer’s Glue on Canvas” and if you are not careful you’ll end up with very disappointing results.
Bad Idea: Before you use “school glue” for any project, remember that it is meant for paper, it’s washable and it dries flat! Yes, it dries flat, and it is exactly why using “school glue” for the purpose of creating visible texture on a canvas is not such a good idea. You might have a “slight elevation” but to be honest, it is barely noticeable unless you are very close to the canvas. Not to mention that if you are planning on painting over the glued surface, depending on the quality of your canvas, the glue might peal off.
Good Idea: The idea behind this technique is a good one, just switch “school glue” for puffy paint. You can find puffy paint in almost all stores at reasonable prices. It is mostly washable and it’s easy to work with, if you don’t like the results you can easily peal it off the canvas once it dries. While you can willingly peal it off, it can also handle painting over without pealing! This was the original thought behind this technique, the “Elmer’s glue” must have been someones idea of ineffectively cutting corners.
Another approach to this technique is writing/drawing with a hot glue gun, it will dry quicker but is less forgiving as it can damage your canvas if you decide to peal it off and try again. It honestly depends on the quality of your canvas and your glue.
#3 Chalk Paint
Chalk paint can give your craft or DIY project a very unique touch and feel. There are three different kinds of chalk paints: furniture chalk paint, crafts chalk paint and chalkboard paint.
There is really no difference between the first two, in most cases you can use it for both crafts and furniture even if it’s not specified on the label. Just keep in mind that it is a very thick paint unlike your ordinary craft paints. Chalkboard paint is meant for any surface you want to use a a chalkboard itself, it makes it easier to write, erase and re-write!
Bad Idea: Any surface painted with chalk paint or “chalk matte finish” will show dirt and dust more than any other surface. If you attempt to clean it with a damp cloth it will show where it was cleaned, sometimes it will even looked as though the painted surface has been damaged. Even small projects can easily get “dirty” if your working area is not spotless.
Never buy furniture or craft chalk paint expecting to be able to use it like a chalkboard! Unless your painting says “Chalkboard Paint” it will not work like a chalkboard, it will only have the feel and look of it, not the functionality of it!
Good Idea: Unless you are literally using your painted surface as a chalkboard, you can salvage your furniture by painting a layer of “Wax” over it. It will make it easy to clean and will protect the painted surface. I suggest buying a wax specifically for chalk paint, the brands vary depending on where you buy them, but they will protect your surface without damaging to look and feel of chalk itself.
If you are working on a small craft project and prefer not to spend money on the wax itself (it can be pricey), make sure your work area is clean. If small areas are dirtied with glue, dust or other paints; just take a dry brush of the chalk paint and brush over the “dirty” areas. Never scrape, rub or wet the areas attempting to clean them or remove debris.
Keep an eye out for more “Good Ideas… Bad Ideas!”