Thursday, September 18, 2014

We made a Paper Mache Elephant!!!

Last month end we attended a convention where around 5000 people from all over US had gathered. All US based organizations representing my home state in India participated in this convention.

My friends at local non-profit organization wanted to showcase one of the historical and popular festival celebrated in my homestate (Karnataka, India) called Dasara. Dasara procession is incomplete without the elephant(s) as elephant carries the gold studded howdah or seat on elephant (ambari in kannada) with the goddess idol.

While I was on vacation, I learnt that they decided to get the inflatable elephant. I was little sad for a lost opportunity to make a life size (ok almost lifesize) young adult male elephant. Since there was a little delay in the shipping of inflatable elephant, we started working on the elephant just 10 days before the event.

You will see me saying "we" thru out this posting as lots of my friends and their family helped in building the elephant. Stuffing, Paper Mache, Painting and decorating him (elephant) wouldn't have finished quickly without their help!!

Here is how the elephant looked during the procession. (Photo credit : Pooja)

Me and the elephant with howdah (this is also hand made) on top during the procession. (Photo Credit : Sri)

Front view

Close Up: (photo creadit Veena G)

This is how he looked before boarding the Uhaul truck :)

We all enjoyed the whole process of making elephant. It was a wonderful feeling to create one and finish it right on the night before Vinayaka Chaturthi (The day most Indians celebrate the birth of lord Ganesha (elephant head god))

Just to give you an idea how tall elephant is, here is the picture of my son (who is almost 5'10") along with elephant

Thanks for stopping by and Stay tuned for the details on how the elephant was made!!

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Friday, September 5, 2014

Magnetic Picture Frame

Sorry for disappearing from blog land!! After coming back from vacation, got completely busy with paper mache elephant project (will post the details soon).

We both love traveling and exploring new places. Hubby loves to collect the fridge magnets as souvenirs from every place we visit. It was fine while we were in rental apartment. Once we moved to this home, we couldn't put these on the stainless steel refrigerator. Couple of ceramic ones broke when slipped from the fridge, so I packed them nicely in a box and put them away. He was sad that his collection was biting the dust in the box. I surprised him with this quick and easy project.

I did this project long time back but sharing it on the blog today :)

All that you need for this project is Galvanized Metal Sheet (I got 12" by 18" sheet from Lowes), Fabric, Picture frame and duct tape. One good idea is to carry the magnet with you while shopping for the galvanized metal sheet. I picked up the frames (without glass and back cover) from Michael's with 40% off coupon.

Please be careful while handling the metal sheet, edges are pretty sharp. I covered the edges with the duct tape to save my fingers.

Wrap the fabric on the metal sheet, just like gift wraping. I secured the fabric ends to the metal sheet using duct tape.

 This is how it looked from the front. I selected a neutral color fabric as the magnets are colorful.

I was planning to hang these without the frame (you can see the two holes I drilled for looping the ribbon on the right side).  After placing the magnets, realized it was heavy, so, used the frame. Since I was using no back cover and no glass frame, after placing the metal sheet there was a gap at the back. Foam-core board (lying around after some school project) was cut to size and used to fill in the gap. Yes, you guessed it right ;) , I secured with duct tape.

Voila!!! Magnetic Picture frame is ready.

Now time to adorn the frame with magnets :) 

Since we had many magnets, I ended up making two of these. Looking at the way collection is growing, I might have to make one more soon.

I love the projects which are quick and deliver satisfactory results. This is one of those projects which you can finish in less than 30 mins, excluding the shopping part :)
 What do u collect as keepsakes from your travel??

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