Cross Stitch Heart Valentine Box

8 02 2017

Cross Stitch Heart Valentine Box DIY With A.I. Friedman

Valentine’s Day is only a week away, it’s time to break out the hearts. We have an easy project for you that takes less than an hour but is a great way to add a handmade touch to a Valentine.

The only things you need are:Materials needed to make Cross Stitch Heart Box

  • A paper box (ours is a 3″ square)
  • Red embroidery floss
  • An Xacto knife (or pushpin)
  • Sewing needle
  • Pencil
  • Ruler

 

 

The heart design we are using is 7 squares wide so you need to divide your box into 7 equal sections. If you have a 3″ square box like us, then you can just use centimeters! Make lines across the box (we are making a grid). Remember to use a pencil, we are going to be erasing these lines later!

Marking seven equal sections on your box

Then turn your box 90 degrees and make lines perpendicular to the ones you just made. You will now have a grid set up on your box.

Grid set up on box

 

We are going to use this simple heart design as our cross stitch pattern. The next step is to take your pencil and mark off where the heart is going on your grid. This way we won’t make holes across our entire grid, just where we need them for the heart.

Cross Stitch Heart PatternMarking where the heart will go on our grid

The box we’re using is pretty sturdy cardboard so I had to use an Xacto to cut the holes. If your box is a little flimsier than ours you can use a pushpin to make holes really easily.

Poke holes in your box so we can cross stitch along the top

Once you have all your holes poked, make sure you look at the back of the lid to make sure they got all the way through, it’s better do that now than have to do it while you are cross stitching.

Holes poked in the lid of the box

Now you can erase all of our pencil grid lines and where you marked off the outline of the heart.

Erase all pencil lines off the box

Thread your needle and get stitching! If you have never cross stitched before, the important thing to remember is to always start your stitches the same way. So come up with the needle from the bottom right corner then go down through the top left corner.

Starting to cross stitch on the box

Then to form the “X” come up from the bottom left corner and go back down through the top right.

The first cross stitch on the box!

Continue doing this in the same way until you have completed your heart pattern. It’s good to not have to deal with too long of a thread, 18″ is a good starting point. You will run out of thread but that’s okay just rethread your needle and keep stitching.

Creating the heart out of cross stitch

Once you finish, trim any long ends hanging off the back of the lid and then sit back and admire your work.

Cross Stitch Heart Valentine Box

You can put a small gift like jewelry or chocolate in your cute new box. It’s also a great way to deliver a love note. And if you couldn’t think of anything to get your Valentine aside from a gift card, one of those will totally fit in as well. Plus, no one can call you lazy or thoughtless if you took the time to make a custom handmade box.

DIY Cross Stitch Valentine Box

Be sure to tag any projects you make with #DIYwithAIF and happy stitching!

 

 

 

 





Two Views: Father and Daughter – Paintings by Sheldon Snyder and Tova Snyder

26 01 2017

Our February show in the A.I. Friedman Gallery is going to be special. Instead of featuring just one artist, we are featuring paintings by a father and daughter! It will be an interesting study of art throughout a family and the generations.

Sheldon Snyder - Church in Port Chester

 

Sheldon Snyder is the father of Tova Snyder and he has studied art at the High School of Music and Art in Manhattan, the Brooklyn Museum, and Syracuse University.  From the 1960’s through the 1980’s, Sheldon and his wife, Ruby, owned and operated Katan Toys in Provincetown and in Rye. During that time he designed and made original wood toys. Sheldon has exhibited his paintings, silk screens, and stencils through out Westchester County.

Tova Snyder - Harrison Fire House

It’s clear that her father’s creativity influenced Tova Snyder. After graduating from Rye Country Day School, she received a B.A. in Fine Arts from Yale University, and an MFA in painting  from Tyler School of Art. Tova focuses on public art and painting. Her most visible public art projects include the permanent MTA/ArtsForTransit installation, “Railways and Rooftops” at the Harrison Metro North station, and the “trompe l’oeil” painted windows on the “Waterfront” building complex on South Main Street in Port Chester. She is currently working on two large scale community murals sponsored by the City of New York’s NYC Mural Arts Program.

The show will be up for the entire month of February, and we will be having an Opening Reception Saturday February 11th from 1pm to 3pm. Don’t miss your chance to see some excellent work by local artists.

 





Holiday Fun – Employee Ugly Sweater Contest

22 12 2016

We had some holiday fun at both stores this week with an Ugly Christmas Sweater Contest!  It really helped to get the holiday spirit flowing!

At Port Chester we saw lots of great sweaters, but we had to shout out to Kat who made her own abstract art piece out of her sweater! Also Gary won the official title of “Ugliest Ugly Sweater” for this little beauty of Christmas festiveness:

Handmade ugly sweater and official Ugliest Ugly Sweater

Heather won the “Funniest Ugly Sweater” award with her awesome fireplace ensemble! Complete with her phone playing a crackling fire video. Also, bonus points for including a frame!

Crackling fireplace ugly Christmas ensemble

Carla, Dottie and Sarah are rocking these classic ugly sweaters. We especially love the pompom snowmen decorating the tree!

Carla, Dottie and Sarah in classic ugly Christmas sweaters

This lovely tinsel masterpiece won Holly the award for “Most Creative” also it’s very appropriate to feature a wreath as Holly is Port Chester’s Floral Department Manager!

Surprise tinsel wreath!

Luis won the big award for Best Ugly Sweater! Also we think John’s Festivus sweater deserves an honorable mention.

Best Ugly Sweater Winner at Port Chester

Great job Port Chester! Thank you for helping make the store get into the Christmas spirit. You all look super merry and bright!

Port Chester Store's Ugly Sweater Participants!

Our NYC store couldn’t be left out of all of the ugly sweater fun! Anthony’s full out elf outfit is on a whole new level of festiveness.

Anthony's elf outfit for the ugly sweater contest!

Cynthia did a great job customizing her own sweater with all sorts of fun doodads!

Cynthia's custom ugly Christmas sweater!

Anna gets bonus points for having a light up sweater! What a fun way to spread holiday cheer.

Anna's awesome light up penguin sweater

Reindeer antlers always get you extra credit in an ugly sweater contest. Also how cute is the pug on Rhoda’s sweater?

Rhoda's cute Pug sweater!

Brian is representing Hanukkah with his ugly sweater choice, it’s Hanukkat!

Happy Hanukkat from Brian.

And last, but definitely not least, the big winner is… Andrew! No one could complete with this entire suit of Christmas wonder. Congratulations Andrew, you earned it.

Andrew's amazing Christmas Suit

Thanks to everyone who participated in the contest at our 18th Street Store! You all look fantastic and we hope you had fun!

All of the ugly Christmas Sweaters at 18th Street

Remember that both stores will be closed on Christmas Day and have special hours on Christmas Eve. You can check the hours on our Store Page. We hope everyone has a great holiday weekend!

 





Make Your Own Candy Cane Ornaments

19 12 2016

Make Your Own Candy Cane Ornaments

Christmas is just around the corner, and time is running out to make handmade presents! If you know you are short on crafting time, but still want to make something, give these Candy Cane Ornaments a try! The only materials you need are polymer clay, tin foil, an oven and a baking sheet. You can make them in between all of your caroling, wrapping, and cookie eating.

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Quick Holiday Mug DIY Gift Project

7 12 2016

Quick Holiday Mug DIY Gift Project by A.I. Friedman

If you are anything like me, then every year after Christmas has ended you think, “Next year, I’m going to make EVERYONE a handmade present.” Then next year rolls around and it’s a week before Christmas, you are up to your elbows in glitter and it is just not happening. Well, I have the perfect project for you! This Quick Holiday Mug lives up to it’s name, it won’t take you hours of crafting.  Plus, everyone loves a good mug! You only need a couple things;  A blank mug and some DecoArt Glass Paint Markers (we carry them at our Port Chester Store).

Things you need to make the Quick Holiday Mug DIY Gift Project

These markers a great because after curing the paint in the oven, they are dishwasher safe!   Super easy to use and easy to care for afterwards. When you first open your markers, you will notice the tips are white.  With the cap on, shake the marker a lot. Then using a scrap piece of cardboard (I used the packaging from the markers), press the tip of the marker straight down to the cardboard.  You’ll notice that the tip retracts inward, hold it there for a while, it’s getting full up with the paint.  Once your marker tip is the right color you’re ready to go!

Using the DecoArt Glass Paint Marker

I decided to write “Have a cup of Cheer” on my mug because I thought it would be a cute present wrapped up with some nice tea or hot cocoa.  You can be completely creative and do whatever you want with your mug! Make a Santa’s Milk mug to leave out with your milk and cookies, a personalized mug, draw a picture, or whatever you can think of!

Writing on the mug with the Glass Paint Markers

You don’t need to press very hard to use the markers so just take your time and have fun! I really liked the look of the shiny gold marker and might need to make a mug with just the gold paint next! I added some extra little snowflake details on the handle of my mug.

Mug handle with snowflakes!

Once you have finished your creation you need to let the paint set for 8 hours.  If you are planning on making multiple mugs I would do all the drawing in one sitting and then let all of them rest for 8 hours together.  Yes, I know I said this was quick, but you don’t need to do anything to the mugs during this time, so it doesn’t count. Go use this time to wrap other presents!

Quick DIY Mug Project

Next we need to bake the mug in the oven. This is what sets the paint and makes it dishwasher safe for the future, so it’s important! Set your oven to 375 degrees, pop your mug in (don’t preheat, just put it right in!) and bake for 40 minutes.  After that is over your mug is completed! Stick a bow on it and move onto your next Christmas To-Do List item. Or, just sit down and have a nice cup of cocoa instead.

Finished Quick Holiday Mug DIY Gift Project

We would love to see all the festive mugs you create! Share your projects with us using #DIYwithAIF and Happy Crafting!

 





Holiday Crafts at Westchester Children’s Museum

5 12 2016

Stocking craft at the Westchester Children's Museum

Every month on the first Saturday  we host a free craft workshop at the Westchester Children’s Museum. We love working with WCM and it’s one of our favorite events every single month. This past weekend was our December workshop and we did a special festive project to get in the holiday spirit!

Our workshop helpers worked with the kids to make paper stocking ornaments! We brought lots of fun red, green and white papers to decorate the little Christmas stockings! Other materials we used were; scissors, fun shapes, string and glitter glue galore.

 

We thought it would be fun to check out some of the stockings the kids made here on the blog.  One of our favorite parts of doing these workshops at the Westchester Children’s Museum is getting to see all of the different creative ideas the kids have about their projects! We saw everything from super clean traditional stockings:

Kid's paper stocking Christmas craft

To a little more free and loose “messy is fun”stocking:

Messy is fun stocking craft!

We love how the paper patterns were matched on this one!

Patterned paper stocking craft for kids

Thank you to all of our workshop helpers who work to make our craft projects a huge success! Don’t miss out on our future workshops, keep up with them on our Events Page. We hope this helped you get into a festive Christmas crafting mood!

Kid's stocking paper ornament craft project

 





10 Artists You Should Be Following on Instagram

16 11 2016

Instagram isn’t only a great platform for selfies and pictures of that delicious burger you ate last night, there are also tons of amazing artists posting new content everyday!  Following these artists will help turn your feed into a mini gallery show that updates all the time.

  1. Friends With You (@friendswithyou)

Friends With You

Friends With You is made up of two artists, Sam Borkson and Arturo Sandoval III.  Their mission is to spread “Magic, Luck and Friendship.” Friends With You is known for their large, fun, colorful installations and following their Instagram account will definitely add some cuteness to your feed.

 

2. Subway Doodle (@subwaydoodle)

Subway Doodle

Subway Doodle lives and works in Brooklyn, New York.  He adds whimsy and fun to the New York Subway by adding monsters into everyday situations.  He uses his iPad to make these drawings and is a cool example of an Instagram artist since social media is the main outlet he uses to show these works.

 

3. Derek Myers (@derek_the_deliman)

Derek Meyers

Derek Meyers is an illustrator from Ohio who posts amazingly tiny detailed doodles and illustrations. Most of them are inspired by nature and combine geometric framing with intricate linework.

 

4. Rika Harimulya (@mulyahari)

Riki Harimulya

Riki Harimulya is an Art Director but the reason to follow his account are the beautiful photos he posts of his fantastic hand lettering. We love typography and meticulous hand lettering is our favorite.

 

5. Becca Clason (@beccaclason)

Becca Clason

Becca Clason is another typography artist but she creates her lettering out of objects instead of drawing.  Her work is creative and so fun, we want to jump into her pictures.

 

6. Katie Marks (@anotherseattleartist)

Katie Marks

Handmade ceramics amaze us and there are tons of great ceramic artists out there on Instagram.  Katie Marks’ is a great account to follow because she shows all the parts of her process including sketches, mixing, throwing, sculpting and glazing.

 

7. Danielle Fisher (@danielleportraits)

Danielle Fisher

If realism is your thing then you are going to love Danielle Fisher’s Instagram.  She creates amazing animal portraits with colored pencil and pastels. She posts both works in progress and finished pieces.

 

8. Mark Lobo (@oakandink)

Oak and Ink Creative

Mark Lobo of Oak and Ink Creative has a really cool project going on his Instagram account. He is working his way through the Pantone swatch book in photos.  Each photo posted lists the Pantone color it is inspired by.

 

9. Danielle Clough (@fiance_knowles)

Danielle Clough

These embroidered portraits are so painterly, we can’t take our eyes off them.  Danielle Clough creates her beautiful embroidery work on mini hoops, tennis rackets, and shoes.

 

10. Zener Peled (@zemerpeled)

Zemer Peled

These awe-inspiring contemporary sculptures by Zemer Peled are made up of thousands of ceramic shards. She creates the ceramic pieces herself then fires them and breaks them before combining them into these sea anemone like sculptures.

 

We hope your Instagram feed will be infused with creativity by following these awesome artists.  If you need more great art content in your feed don’t forget that you can follow us on Instagram @aifriedman