Guerilla Glue

Born to DIY

Sam & Dean & Castiel & Crowley: Supernatural Saturday

I’ll be the first to admit: I’ve been dragging my heels on this one. When you are a perfectionist who is also constantly overwhelmed with ideas, that is generally the result. But I’ve got it sorted, and I’m happy to present the first of (hopefully) many Supernatural assemblages.

This is sort of a Winchester starter kit.



Each box is about 2.5″ x 3.5″ – easily pocketed or perfect for display.

The outside has been distressed, because you know no one in this show ever has something brand new. It’s inscribed with the Enochian sigil of protection.

Inside, you’ll find all the basics: an ampule of holy water, complete with rosary and crucifix that can be used in a variety of ways (say, dropping it into the water main that feeds all the sprinklers in town).

There is a small vial of rock salt, for loading shotgun shells, creating protective circles, and sealing off an area from demons.

The cast iron skeleton key – I know they boys always have lock pick kits, but cast iron? and a universal key?

Then we have a small vial of phoenix ash, a human tooth, and two small animal bones.

All that’s missing are a devil’s trap, maybe a vial of dead man’s blood… but you can expect to see all those in future incarnations.

Now for the business (I promise you won’t have to seal the deal with a kiss): I’m selling each of these kits for $35, shipping included. I’m also taking custom orders, so if there is something special you want, please don’t hesitate to get in touch.

Upcoming assemblages will be based around main characters (mrowr!) or certain themes – vampirism, demons, ghots, jinn, etc. I will be posting those here and on my instagram (guerilla_glue) so you have lots of ways to get in touch. If all else fails, send me an email: laviniashort at gmail dot com.


Mehndi Patterns

These are just sort of a little side project that I’ve been working on. I’m not sure anything will come of them, but they are so soothing to work on that I dont even care!

I pull out projects like this when I’m feeling especially anxious or just need to stop thinking for a little bit. Concentrating on drawing the lines is almost meditative. They are far from perfect, and definitely not symmetrical, but I love them anyway.

And I just happened to get my paws on some old paper – mostly envelopes from India. You can see some of the stamps and writing through the drawing.

Caveat: if you decide to try something like this with old paper, be very sure to use a bleed-resistant pen, like a Micron.

Literally waiting for the paint to dry.

Or, if you are Chris Traeger: lit-rally waiting for paint to dry!

So, while I wait for the paint to dry on those tins I’ve been working on, I thought I should probably go ahead and finish a silly little painting that I’ve been putting off forever!

twin peaks

Are you in love with Twin Peaks? Me, too. I’ve got another Twin Peaks-themed project almost finished. As soon as I get it to the point where it’s worthy of showing, I’ll post it.

Final, final distressing results

I’ve finally reached a place where I’m entirely happy with the three tins that I’ve been soaking in the rusting solution. I think they look like, oh, I don’t know, maybe something you’d use when summoning a crossroads demon?


To come later today: a little more work on the bottle project, if I don’t freeze to death first! (Doesn’t the world know it’s almost June?)

Tin Distressing Results!

If you were following the tutorial I posted yesterday, you’ll know that I am currently distressing/rusting some tins to be used in an upcoming project. And today I have results to show for all that (easy) work!


Here is a close-up shot of one of the tins – you can clearly see which part was submerged overnight, and which part was exposed to the air. I’m kind of digging the rust pattern on that one section, so at this point, I’m taking them all out of the solution. If they air dry in a manner that I like, awesome. If not, back into the solution they go!

Long time, no blog.

What’s it been? A year?

No! A year and two months-ish. This is most definitely not how I expected things to go here. But, as I’m sure you’ve all experienced, sometimes life just decides to happen all at once.

I’ve moved three times in the last year. I’ve re-acclimated to Richmond, the city of my heart, after being away for almost a decade. I’ve found an old friend who I thought was lost, and made new friends. I still haven’t been to a show, but that will be remedied next month. Occasionally, my bipolar has kicked my ass in only the ways that bipolar can – but I’m still here, and I think that counts for a lot.

But most importantly, art is back in my life. I’m finally settled in a place where I can unpack my supplies and start new projects – and get this blog going again!

I’ve started two new projects – one is kind of a public art projects and the other is an altered tin project. I have no details for you yet, because I’m still working them out in my head, but I do have a mini-tutorial for you, as well as the beginning shots of each work.

Public Art Project 1


I’m sure all you smarty-pantses will see where this is headed.

Since my other project involves altered tins, I thought I’d show you my favorite method for quickly rusting them.

First the materials:


This is by no means an exact science and I am by no means an exact scientist, so you’ll have to go with the flow here. The good news is, you really can’t screw this up.

Step 1. Gather your materials. You will need blank tins, hydrogen peroxide, salt, and some kind of acid – white vinegar is cheapest, but I had lemons that needed to be used, so that’s what went in the mix (beauty bonus: all that juice on your hands? rub it into your face – instant AHA exfoliation). You’ll also need a container to hold everything, and possibly something to weigh the tins down so that they are completely submerged.

Step 2. Prep your tins. Not pictured here is a sanding block, but you can see the difference in the two tins above. On the left is an unaltered tin, on the right is one that I sanded. The etched parts allow your rusting solution to permeate the top coat and helps speed up the rusting process, as well as creating a really cool texture.

Step 3. Mix your solution. Combine a few tablespoons of salt, another few tablespoons of peroxide (eyeballing this is perfectly acceptable in my world), and your acid. I used the juice of two lemons – so maybe a quarter to half cup of vinegar, if that’s what you are using. Use a container of your choice – I’m currently using a smallish Gladware container.

Step 4. Rust, baby, rust. Completely submerge your tins in the solution – weigh them down if you need to. I like to flip mine around a few times during the process, just to make sure everything is exposed to the solution.

Step 5. Wait. Sit back and let your concoction do its thing. When your tins achieve the desired level of rust, take them out, rinse them off, and do what you will with them. I do recommend applying some sort of sealant – gel medium is great, but even a general paint sealant will work.

Note: These tins will start to rust within 20 minutes (told you it was a quick method!) so if you really want to control the outcome, definitely keep an eye on them and remove them from the solution once they reach the desired level.

Easy peasy. Now if you’ll excuse me, I have to go watch some metal bits rust.


Mixed Media Samples

Lately I’ve had a lot of people asking to see samples of my work. Because, apparently, trying to actually explain what materials you use, how you love the use of texture above all else, etc. just doesn’t translate well into a mental image. Go figure. 🙂

So here I’ve posted two finished pieces and one work in progress (oh, please pretend that last photo is not fuzzy!).


This piece, obviously is of a saint. I’ve always been completely taken with religious iconography, and in my millionth re-reading of Jitterbug Perfume, I came across a quote attributed to Elbert Hubbard: “Every saint has a bee in his halo.” Instantly I became interested in creating a fairly straightforward illustration of the quote, and thus, this piece was born.

Some of the more obvious materials used here are:

  • paint
  • image transfer
  • ink
  • variegated metallic leafing
  • tulle
  • small brass bee charm

My bff Glossy Gel Medium played a huge role (as it does in almost all my work). I use it as an adhesive, to achieve different textures with paint, and even to create the image transfers in my work.



This piece still doesn’t have a title – it may never have a title! But for months I had been imagining this creature/woman in a sort of woodland environment. It sat on the back burner for a while and then, as is often the case, I found a material that set the whole process in motion. In this case, it was the cork and the metallic textured papers underneath the beading. There are aspects of this piece that I’m not in love with (the woman’s dress, for one) but overall, I love the way the textures and colors interact with one another.

Here are the materials used in this piece:

  • scrapbooking paper
  • beads
  • dried and pressed daylily petals
  • embroidery floss
  • sequins
  • paint


This fuzzy beast of a picture is a piece that I’m currently working on (although I’ve been seriously held up by an out-of-state move). It’s just a super quick picture I took to be able to show where my head was taking me and hopefully receive feedback from friends and other artists. It’s inspired, in part, by Dante. After re-reading The Inferno, I started researching medieval ideas on purgatory – and there are so, so many. I could probably do a painting a day on the subject and never run out of ideas.

The materials used so far:

  • dried and pressed fall leaves
  • found metal objects
  • paint (so many layers of paint!)
  • gold and copper leafing
  • image printed on acetate

There are many pieces left to add in – flower petal flames, more leafing, beads, sequins….

Once I unpack, I will have more pieces to show you, and some upcoming posts on some of the processes I tend to favor.

A few bits of one of the pieces currently in the works:

20150730_132827(0) (1)

Praying To the Gods of DIY

Today the boy and I started out on another DIY venture, one that is not without peril, fear, or threat of constant doom. So we knew we had to do what every good DIYer does: we made an offering to the Gods of DIY.

primer offering

Then, with our faithful companions by our side, we set off down the long, mysterious path towards an end which even we cannot predict. Pray for us, dear friends, and the tutorial that is to follow.

Draya, forever on guard.
Bronx, always at the ready.

Free Recipe Card Printables

It never fails: Spring approaches and so does my urge to cook. Usually my recipes are scribbled haphazardly on whatever scrap of paper I can find and then tacked to the fridge using whatever scrap of magnet I can find. It’s not the greatest organizational system and, you’ll be shocked to know, it also isn’t all that attractive.

So this year, in an attempt at organization, I drew up some little 4×6 recipe cards, and I want to share them with you! Each one is a little different. I don’t know if you are like me, but sometimes I need a few extra lines to squash everything in, so one of the cards is made to reflect that. The other is a little more spacious. Both are totally cute.

recipe car printable

recipe card printable

As I said, each card is 4×6, so you can arrange them to fit two on a page and print as many of each as you want (or as few!). They will also fit into a standard card box, or if you use photo protectors in a notebook they will fit there as well.


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