Whether you’re in need of a quick, impressive gift or you just want to make some pretty things for your own home there are lots of great projects that you can do with a hot glue gun and a few supplies. Craft departments sell mirrors in all shapes and sizes. Purchase round or square ones and glue two of them together. The best way is to place one mirror flat on a table then place a line of glue on the bottom edge of the second mirror and hold it onto the first mirror until cool.
The standing mirror will be a little shaky but to sturdy it you can add a few decorations. In the center of the base mirror glue an angel, dolphin, kitten or another novelty. Glue appropriate decorations around it, such as flowers, pebbles, or a tiny ball of yarn. Make sure that some of these decorations are glued to the base mirror as well as to the back mirror to make the back one more sturdy.
Make pillows with hot glue simply by cutting two squares and gluing them together, all but a few inches for stuffing. Check to see that there are no places unglued. Stuff the pillow well and glue shut. Attach a “dry clean only” tag if this will be a gift. Make runners to match the pillows by measuring the length and width needed, then hemming with the glue. Turn under the edges and hot glue. After it is cool turn under and glue once again.
Make a tablecloth in a similar fashion by laying the cloth on the table and cutting it to appropriate proportions. Hem with the hot glue method, allow to cool, then hem once again. Other similar projects are place mats, cloth napkins, pet beds and end table covers.
Make bed pockets by cutting a piece of fabric to a fourth of the length of the bed. Now cut the fabric to where it will be just a couple of inches above the floor but will reach at least twelve inches under the mattress. Hem this large piece of fabric by using the hot glue. Cut a second piece of fabric which should be a few inches shorter in width and a third of the length. Hem the second piece of fabric. Align the smaller piece of fabric towards the bottom of the large piece and glue into place. Now make lines of glue to form pockets in the small piece of fabric. Arrange the glue to where you will end up with three pockets to hold remote, glasses or tv guide.
Use tiles from an old Scrabble game to make all types of crafts. Glue magnetic squares on the back of them and give to a child for creativity time. He can move the letters around on the fridge to spell his name and more. Choose a tile with the initial of a girl in the family and glue a pin back on it. The pin backs can be found in most craft departments. Other quick pins are coins, shaped wooden or foam pieces, real starfish from a craft store, or even an arrangement of lace, ribbons and beads.
Make a key ring from Scrabble tiles by aligning the letters, face down, onto a table. Thread a piece of ribbon through the key ring then align the two ends of the ribbon all the way down the row of tiles. Use a tiny amount of glue to attach the ribbon into place, making sure each ribbon attaches to each tile. Now align another row of tiles, letters facing upwards, upon the first row. Lift each top tile, one at a time, squirt the back with hot glue and place it on top of the previous tile, pressing them together. Allow to cool properly before picking it up from the table.
Make a desk name plaque by gluing a name, spelled with Scrabble tiles, onto a Scrabble tile tray. The name can be just the last name, or can be a first initial with last name. Ones made with nicknames or online handles are good choices for gifts.
Use stretch cord to make a rearview mirror hanger. Measure how much cord you will need then allow a couple of extra inches. Bring the two ends together and insert them into a bead. Allow one thread to stay inside the bead and the other to hang out of the bottom a few inches. Squirt hot glue into the bottom hole of the bead, making sure the glue is sufficient enough to reach the thread end that is inside the bead. Hurriedly place two or three feathers into the open hole of the bead, making sure to keep one end of the cord hanging out. Now place a bead on the end of the long cord, then fill with glue and attach a couple more feathers.
Hot glue a saucer onto an upside-down cup to make a candle holder. Hot glue a lace piece around the underside of the saucer for a “skirt”. The handle of the cup provides a way to carry the candle around. The set is not dishwasher safe – the glue will dissolve in water.
Hot glue beads, rope, novelties, sequin or other items onto an ordinary picture frame to add pizzazz. Use hot glue to make ornaments, too. Cut a tinsel pipe cleaner in half, string beads, gluing the first and last bead in place. Shape the pipe cleaner like a candy cane and hang by the crook, on the tree.
Hot glue green tree limbs onto a bare wall. The limbs can be from your back yard or a craft store. Use the hot glue to attach silk plant leaves and flowers onto the limbs. Add butterflies, small ceramic ladybugs or even a tiny bird. This makes a unique wall decoration that’s inexpensive and easy.
Make a glass terrarium with silk flowers by first gluing raffia in the bottom. Use a pencil eraser or something similar to press the raffia into the hot glue on the bottom. The ideal planter is a clear glass jar or bottle. Choose flowers and accessories that are in proportion with the jar. Use tweezers to hold a silk reed and hot glue it into the bottom. It’s easier to add the glue to the reed than the glass bottom. Continue adding flowers, leaves and reeds, allowing some to come up and over the edge of the glass.
Plaques are really easy. Just paint the plaque the color you wish and hot glue wooden letters, plastic novelties, silk flower arrangements, photos or other decorations. Hang on a bedroom door with the person’s name or a theme they like.
You’ll be surprised at how many other crafts you can think of while making some of these. Just make sure the project you choose will not be one that requires washing with lots of water. Damp cloths are fine for cleaning most crafts made with hot glue.