I had half-heartedly tossed out the idea of doing some simple DIY projects and here I am, actually following through! I also have a giveaway and a story at the bottom of the post if you’re interested. Anyway, many moons ago, I got this idea to make magnets and in my enthusiasm, I ordered a bunch of supplies. I probably don’t need to elaborate that my magnet-making scheme didn’t pan out so well, and now I have quite the surplus taking up room in my basement.
So, just in time for the holidays, I thought I’d create a little tutorial for making your own magnets. Actually, “tutorial” seems to be a rather overblown description of what I’m offering, since I’m sure anyone can figure out how to do this. However, here’s a list of materials and a visual step-by-step:
– E6000 glue, magnets (I used 3/4 inch or 19mm size, similar available here)
– Glass or plastic cabochons (I got my plastic ones from here)
– Decorative paper or fabric.
– The metal case is just a cute packaging idea for the magnets (you can find similar here and here – I can’t remember where I got mine from).
– Disposable gloves (not pictured)
2. Either trace the magnet onto decorative paper or fabric and cut out, or use a circular punch. I happened to have a 5/8-inch size punch but a 3/4-inch one would have worked great too as it would have been the same size as my magnet. I would suggest using thicker paper and fabric as the glue may bleed through and sometimes blur the design if the paper/fabric is too thin. I wrote the letters onto card stock, and I didn’t mind how the ink smudged a bit. I’ve also used photos minimized and printed on photo paper for these and they look fantastic.
3. Place a very small amount of the glue onto the magnet and adhere the paper/fabric. Make sure you are working in a well-ventilated area. This glue can make you feel light-headed, and it’s also a good idea to wear disposable gloves.
4. Place another small drop of the glue on top of the paper/fabric. You’ll need to work quickly here.
5. Press down firmly onto the cabochon to get the air bubbles out. You might also need to wipe some excess glue off of the sides. Try to spread out the glue evenly while pressing down. Let dry 24 hours.
And that’s it!
Because I have quite a few extra, and in the spirit of Thanksgiving and general giving, I thought it would be fun to do a giveaway. I have five “kits” that include 8 magnets, 8 cabochons and a metal tin. The giveaway is open to one and all (that includes you international folks). This means FIVE winners.
Before I ask you my usual giveaway question, I want to tell you a story first. When I was 19, I got into a massive car accident. It was the day after Thanksgiving, and I was driving down the 405 freeway in Los Angeles, on my way to meet my best friend. It was raining — not too hard, but it was a steady, rhythmic patter. No one knows how to drive in the rain in LA, and that clearly included me that frightening day so many years ago. What I remember is that a white car suddenly nosed its way into my lane, inches from colliding into me. I panicked and swerved, but because of the rain, the road was excessively slick. My car spun out of control. I was FACING oncoming traffic, blinded by all the headlights. Continuing to panic, I recklessly turned my car again, and this time I fishtailed off to the side of the freeway and crashed. I felt my head and body ricochet, and I could see that I had flattened the front of my car against the off ramp wall. I dizzily turned my head and saw two other cars silhouetted in the rain, right next to mine. I started crying and heaving, trying to remember how I had hit two cars. I was afraid to move, though at that point, I wasn’t sure that I could. I watched with dread as one of the car’s door opened and a man stepped out. Then another man from the other car sprinted out.
I was thoroughly confused as one man bent down to place small objects on the ground. The other man rushed over to my side of the car and knocked. I was still immobile so he tried the door and it was open. Out of the corner of my eyes, I could finally see that the small objects were flares, and this man looming above me was holding out a blocky, rectangular, calculator-looking thing. Back in those days, not many people had cell phones (I’m old, people) so I didn’t know what it was at first. I found that I could move my limbs, but had no clue how to use the phone so the man dialed my best friend for me and explained the situation to her. When he handed the early-model cell phone to me, all I could do was keen like an animal into the receiver and my friend dashed out in her pajamas to come get me.
I hadn’t hit the cars. They had stopped out of kindness, protecting me and shoring up much needed help. I totaled my car, and logically, I shouldn’t have survived the accident. The men told me that they saw how I turned a full 360 degrees on the freeway and couldn’t believe I was alive and that I managed to avoid hitting any cars. I didn’t touch a steering wheel again for nearly a year and I still hate to drive. And every Thanksgiving, I remember those men, and their acts of selfless giving, and I am beyond grateful. Because without the bright blanket of flares, without the connection that the rare cell phone provided, I probably wouldn’t have lasted that night. Where would I have gone? What would I have done? It was, by every definition of the word, a miracle.
So my question is this: is there a memorable act of kindness in your life? It can be the smallest of small: perhaps an understanding pat from your child when you were feeling particularly sad or an unexpected compliment from a stranger. Or the grandest of grand: a windfall of epic proportions, an unforgettable soiree thrown in your honor. Anything.
The giveaway will be open until next Friday, December 6th. Good luck!