Johnson Grass is a nightmare here, taking over whole fields
and lawns, it is so thick it will choke out the native vegitation so the
whole field is only Johnson Grass. I am trying to learn to like it. So
far I have made baskets from it that are pretty but decided to do a prototype
of a Christmas ornament with the ends of the Johnson Grass I had cut. Not
too bad but I didn't make sure it was The dry pressed leaf is from
a plant I saw hanging over a fence in California, the seed pods are pretty
on it so I took some home and planted one, pretty leaf, slow growth and
I still don't know what kind of plant it is but love the leaves. I think
I will make some permanent Johnson Grass fans now that I have tried it.
This one will go into the trash or be filled out better, it is about 6
inches long total.
Any pretty grass will do or of course feathers or twigs or corn
shuck cuttings.....hmmm what else.....
Dried Apple Slices are nice (my bow is NOT! what was I thinking!)
And Orange Slices are nice,(below) but eventually they will change
to black. The ones you buy ready made are freeze-dried so they keep thier
color. Lucily they are cheap to make and you can cut the old ones up in
the berry looking things on the orange are some tiny sprigs of the
sorgum(milo) plant, it is a crop across the nation that is largely ignored.
I watch them till they are ripe and then knock on the farmers door and
pay him a couple of dollars for me to pick a few dozen heads for crafting.
Unsually they think I am crazy! I love Milo! If you read packages you will
find that they bleach and dye it and sell it glued to wires in the floral
sections of hobby lobby etc.
It makes a beautiful wreath for the fall. You can get lots of single
milo berries in a bag of mixed bird seed. Mixed bird sees are great seed
art pieces. I love the bags of Safflower seed and will make ornaments from
it for this Christmas.
Odes of Orange Peels and String...
I had glue on my fingers and reached down to pick up a scrap of
the sisal string I had cut parts off of. I looped it up but was glued to
it, so I smoothed it out in a circle and made sure some glue was worked
in it, hung it on a wire to dry. It makes a nice shape for a natural or
western style ornament. I always make western style ornaments. I will make
many without flowers or hearts, just plain usually. In my new house I want
to put up a western tree with the yo-yos of my fathers workshirts on it,
my father was a real Texas cowboy and rancher. He was born in 1903 and
the shirt yo-yos I made cover over 50 yrs of his ranching. I will hange
the Honey Locust pods, he loved them and many other wonderful things.
On the ornament below he flowers are tops of some weeds here and
when we eat oranges in our house we save every peel, it goes well in potpourri
and I often cut out stars and hearts. I toss them into a hanging basket
to dry and I have plenty. They will eventually turn black after a few years,
tear them off and toss them into the potpourri pot and glue on some new.
This time of year is not a good time for Dusty Miller, I
always grow it and if I had decided to put them on my Christmas tree I
would harvest the tops of the plant the tip and the top row or two of leaves,
spread the top out like a snowflake and then press between newspapers.
When you get them out of the press, they are perfect snow flakes. However
you can make some fun things, it is fun curly like it is here, picked at
the end of August Texas heat.
You will see it used in some more projects further along in my crafting.
The tiny little birds are some I found at Goodwill stores but they are
only Styrofoam balls smashed a little covered with paper and glue, then
they used tiny slivers of a wood chip or sometimes a petal from a pine
cone, then they put a tiny little bent piece of cardstock on as a beak
and paint it, they dented in slightly the place where a beaded pin is placed
for the eyes.
I have replicated this type of bird before, it is fun and you can
make up new kinds of birds. The larger birds that are similar have a few
feathers added for the tail and wings. Try making some birds!
I tucked a few dried flowers from my lavender plant behind them
and found a cracked up Burr Oak acorn cap for a nest. I trimmed it with
scissors to make it a half cap.
Now lets see if they reproduce with their fine new home!
This tiny wreath is made of rattan vines and the little
apple slices are from a crab apple. I cut them up for the tiny pieces.
I dry the whole ones too, they do turn dark but are lovely nevertheless.
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