Back in March 2020 when our world turned upside down I started rediscovering my well established neighborhood just outside of Baltimore, Maryland. It is a fantastic collection of older homes with diverse architectural components. I called these hood-hikes-Seeking Signs of Life, Hunting Hints of Hope, and Beholding Bits of Beauty. I discovered a love for photography and would post ten images I collected from each of my jaunts. I unfortunately developed foot issues and had to stop my walks in my little wonderland. I spent time making these picture patchwork squares from my collections. They are the inspiration for these tiles. They now stand a monument to our time there as we have recently moved into a 55+ community less than 10 minutes to where I teach. I still have foot issues and will explore what our new neighborhood has to offer once fully healed. I’m hoping by summertime.
Supplies: Gypsy Soul Laser Cuts-4 Inch Trading Coasters, Gypsy Soul Laser Cuts-2.5 Inch Trading Coasters, Prepared, Sized and Copied 4 inch and 2.5 inch Patchwork Picture Squares, Scissors, Weldbond, Paintbrush, Deli Paper, Sanding Blocks, Matte Gel Medium, Sari Ribbon, Miniature Screws, Screwdriver, Awl, File, Foamie Moroccan Tiles, Embossing Ink, Clear Embossing Powder, Heating Tool, Gold Leaf Rub'nBuff, StazOn Saddle Brown Ink, Ink Applicator,
1. Prepare Picture Patchwork Squares using an editing tool. Then resize and print for your tiles.
3. I like to use Deli Paper to rub images making sure they are secure to the coasters.
4. Use a fine grade Sanding Block to easily round the corners of the coasters and to assure no extra paper is over the edges.
5. Use a rougher grade Sanding Block to add vintage and interest to your coasters.
6. Choose Tiles that will be stacked on top of each other.
7. Add a quick coat of Matte Gel Medium on each of the trading coasters.
8. Next, Choose a piece of complimentary sari ribbon to sandwich between coaster layers.
9. Once layered use an awl to punch holes in 2.5-inch Trading Coasters, then use miniature screws and a screwdriver to secure the two pieces together.
10. Sometimes the screws come through the backside. Use a file to flatten these sharp points.
11. Next use embossing ink and Foamie Moroccan to add texture to the tiles.
12. Spread Clear Embossing Powder on inked portion and cure with a heating tool.
13. Gently rub Gold Lead Rub'nBuff to the elevated surfaces.
14. Now use an ink applicator to add Saddle Brown StazOn to the Coasters giving them a rich vibrant look.
Some Final Thoughts.
This is a simple project to create and allows you to showcase some of your own photographs if you can figure out how to download them for your device. One thing that Covid taught us is that simple pleasures can be immensely satisfying. Some people learned to slow down and take time to appreciate what they have long taken for granted. Some folks discovered a new talent or took up a new hobby. As we look forward in hope to the upcoming month I hope the lessons we learned along the way are not forgotten. I am slowly able to get back to taking short walks through my every changing neighborhood as seasons pass from one to another. May we always have eyes to see the simple gifts being offered to us each day, hearts to heal what is wounded, and hands to hold as hugs return and the human touch is restored slowly but surely!!
"When I'm in turmoil, when I can't think, when I'm exhausted and afraid, and feeling very, very alone. I go for walks. It's just one of those things I do. I walk and I walk and sooner or later, something comes to me, something to make me feel less like jumping off a building." -Jim Butcher
"There comes...a longing never to travel again except on foot."-Wendell Berry
"If you seek creative ides go walking. Angels whisper to a man when he goes for a walk."-Raymond I. OD Myers
'If you pursue happiness, you an ordinary person. If happiness pursues you, you are an extraordinary person. Do not chase happiness; let it chase you!"-Peter Deunov
I liked how taking walks through my neighborhood never going out father than a couple of miles offered such riches and treasures. I was fascinated how many people asked me where I lived because I was able to capture the charm of a countryside village but in the shadows of major US city.