Wednesday, August 31, 2011

For Those of Us Without GPS and Smart Phones - Altered Notebooks

Hello Everyone!

Today I have a simple and fun little project I whipped up.  I purchased these cute little notebooks at a good price during a back to school sale.  I altered them using the We R Memory Keepers Tiffany's collection and some Hard Coat Mod Podge.  They are the perfect size to fit in my purse confortably and still be big enough to be very useful.

I don't have a smart phone or a gps, or a palm pilot, etc.  So, I do all my stuff the old fashioned way.  I thought it would be nice to have a notebook for directions.  There are some parks, friends houses, etc. that I have a general idea how to get to, but need reminders of some of the street names and such, so I thought I'd just put everything in this Directions Notebook.  

The other one is just for helping me make lists, which I am positively obsessed with.  It might also end up with to do lists at times, but Shopping List looked so cute on the front of it I decided to call it that, even though it might not always be accurate!  *LOL*

If you are cooler than me and have all that fun technology you can always alter these for your kids in school or something.  Actually, I think it could make kind of a funny gift to give a Directions Notepad with a map to someone who wants a GPS system, assuming they have a good sense of humor of course ;)  You could package it up in a box and write "Low Tech GPS" or "Poor Man's GPS" or something silly like that.

Monday, August 29, 2011

My Daughter's Stocking, FINALLY done

I cannot believe that this is actually done!  Seriously, this is a project I started forever ago.  I would spend several weeks working for many hours a day, and then fizzle out and forget about it for a few months.

I am so proud to finally have finished my daughter's stocking!!!  Now, I have to start on my son's!  *LOL* 

This is a felt kit from Bucilla.  They make BREATHTAKING designs.  I cut, sequined, beaded, embroidered, did some hand sewing, and wa-lah!  It's not really very creative since I used a kit, but certainly TONS of hours of work and a lot of love.  No one will ever stitch it exactly the same.

I don't have much else to say about this one.  I'm super proud, and relieved I finally completed it.  If you like this and would like to try some felt kit projects of your own I buy my kits from Herrscheners.  I have done some ornaments before and they were SO much fun.  So, if you want to try this out that would be a good place to look.  I'm sure there are others too, I just happen to start ordering from them a few years back and like them.

Friday, August 26, 2011

Glittery Butterfly Card

Happy Friday!

Today's card came together pretty much by accident.  This isn't at all what I set out to make.  *LOL*

I am entering this into the Birthday Bash challenge over at Fantabulous Cricut.  The challenge is to make a birthday project.  
I went through looking at my usual birthday images of cupcakes and such, and nothing was inspiring me.  I happened to find this pretty butterfly on Cake Basics and decided to use it.

I cut the top layer in black, and a back layer in white.  

I took the top layer and carefully added some thick Red Line Tape all over it.  Then I dumped some loose Martha Stewart Glitter over the exposed tape.

I attached the white layer behind it and then cut away the excess tape

This would have been easier if I had a full sticky sheet to cut out as the solid butterfly, but I didn't.  You could also kiss cut a material like that so that you could remove each section separately and more easily get a variety of colors.  I'd love to try that sometime, but today I used what I had on hand.

I took the butterfly to my Martha Stewart Score Board and made lines where the wings started so I could fold them up easily.

I went with a square card base.  The corners are all rounded on a 1/2 inch setting.

I went around the edges with one of my Chomas Creations Gel Pens.

Along the bottom I used my EK Success Open Scallop punch on some pretty cardstock that is somewhat metallic looking.

I added some black satin ribbon.

The sentiment was spelled out using 2 different SP & Company stamp sets from their Mix & Match line.

Thanks so much for visiting me today :)

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Hostess Card

Today I have a hostess card to share with you.  Since I didn't put a sentiment on the front I could also end up using it as an invitation to dinner card instead.

All of the patterned papers are from My Mind's Eye from their Lime Twist collection.  This is the Happy Go Lucky 6 by 6 pad.  I used 5 different patterns from that paper pad on this card.

The adorable image is from a set called Hostess With the Mostess by Amber Ink.  I've been looking for a set like this for a long time and was so excited to find it.  She has it available as a clear stamp set, which is what I bought, or a digital one.  There are several little items that can go on her tray and a sentiment too.

I used some Copics and a couple Stampin' Up markers to color his skin, hair, eyes, and mouth.  Everything else is paper pieced using my patterned paper.  Lots of hand cutting so it did take awhile.

I added some Ranger Liquid Pearls in Petal Pink to the top of the cake to be the frosting.

I layered her onto a couple Nestabilities dies, and went around the white one with some Crystal Stickles.  

Along the bottom of the card I used my EK Success Open Scallop border punch.  I placed a small strip of white cardstock behind the scallops because I thought it looked too busy to have the pattern showing through them.

I added a bit of satin ribbon from Stampin' Up.

The top two corners are rounded on a 1/2 inch setting using my Corner Chomper.

Thanks for stopping by today :) 

Monday, August 22, 2011

Trio of Mini Halloween Cards

Hello Everyone!

I am so excited for Halloween coming up.  My husband and I really enjoy the holiday, so I figured I'd start nice and early on some fun projects.

This fun little trio of cards is my last project as a design team member for Scrapbookaholic By Abby.  It's been SO much fun!!!  Be sure and head over there today to see the rest of the design team's fabulous creations.

The cards are all 3 by 3 black cardstock.  

I went around the edges with my Sakura Gelly Roll pen.  It writes so smoothly and really showed up well against the black.

All of my images are cut from the Cricut Cartridge called Happy Hauntings.  I cut them all at 2.5 inches, but I had to use real dial size for the bride of Frankenstein head because she was a tiny part of a larger frame.

I used three fun colors of twine from The Twinery in Lilac, Mandarin, and Stone.

The images are all attached with pop dots to give them some dimension.  I used some Stickles for Bride of Frankenstein's hair and a did some inking and embossed lines on the pumpkin (but they didn't show at all in the photograph *LOL*)

Thanks so much for stopping by!  Being on this design team has been a lot of fun :)  I've been glad to share the fun with the rest of the team, and would like the thank the lovely Abby for having me as part of it!

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Baby Girl Card

It's time for another fun and fabulous Whimsical Wednesday Challenge.  This time the challenge is called Three Times a Charm.  You need to use 3 colors, 3 Cricut cuts, and 3 of an embellishment such as a button, brad, bow, etc.  This time around I actually came up with the challenge, so if you think it stinks you can blame me ;)  *LOL*  Actually I do think it's a bit tricky - but sometimes it's good for force yourself to think a little harder.

I used the Baby Steps cartridge and cut these adorable little shapes out at 2 inches.  I hid some details on the bottle and bib to avoid other layers that required more colors.  I used a My Pink Stamper stamp to stamp "Sweet Baby" on the bib, but it showed up very pale so I went over it with my Sakura Gel Pen.

The embossing is done with the Spots and Dots Cuttlebug folder.

I hand cut a little banner and stamped Congratulations using an SP & Company stamp.

I added 3 buttons, some faux stitching lines using my Sakura Gel Pen, and plenty of beautiful Stickles.

Be sure and head on over to Whimsical Wednesday today!  The rest of the design team will have lots of fun projects to share and you'll be able to share your own creation for the chance to win an awesome prize :)

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Art Table Layout

Hello Everyone!

Today I just wanted to share this layout I made of my daughter getting an art table last Christmas.

The paper is by DCWV I think it's from the Blossoms and Butterflies Stack.

The photos along the top are cut to 4 by 4.  The other photo is 4 by 6.

The crayons are from Simply Charmed.  I added some Peachy Keen Princess Faces and some Stickles. 

I just layered them onto a blue piece of cardstock and cut it down to look the way I wanted, leaving a little room for me to note the occasion using my Sakura gel pen.

I have to say that I was totally inspired to make this layout because of Cindy!  She does beautiful things and I just love visiting her blog :)  Recently she has made not one, but two posts using these adorable crayons from Simply Charmed and some Peachy Keen faces - so I couldn't resist and had to do something fun with them too.  Be sure and check out her blog.  You'll love it!

Monday, August 15, 2011

The Dress I Sewed

I did it!  I did it!  I sewed myself a real dress that is actually presentable enough to wear in public.  Nothing short of a miracle I think.  I've always been terrified of my sewing machine.  I have dabbled in little projects like aprons, but nothing this involved.  It was a real challenge and one heck of a learning experience. 

For those of you that might be sewers here is the link to the pattern I used.  It's for knit fabrics.

I'd like to take a moment to note.  It isn't perfect!  There are some mistakes.  I can tell it isn't even in the shoulders and tends to slope to one side.  But oh well.  Still a wearable garment, and very comfortable too.  I am pretty short, so buying a dress like this would have been hard.  In fact, the pattern came with 3 lengths, and I took the "mid length" one and still had to shorten it a few inches.  I can only wear it with high heels even after that adjustment.  *LOL*  I'm about 5 foot 1 and 1/2.

That's it for today!  Just wanted to share.  I worked pretty hard on this for several days.  Honestly there isn't anything crafty I don't want to know how to do.  Sewing my own clothing has been on the to do list for a very long time.  So, it feels good to have finished my first dress.  Now that I have a bit more confidence I hope to try and do more sewing in the future.

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Clear Crayon Box

Hello everyone!

I have a super fun project to share with you today :)  I created this for the Back to School Blog Hop hosted by Jovan.  If you are hopping along the trail you should have arrived from Theresa's Blog.  If not, head on over to Jovan's Blog to start the fun.

My daughter isn't school aged yet, so back to school doesn't carry as much meaning for me as it does for some, but it is a reminder to make sure I keep working with my daughter to help her learn and grow each day.  My son too, but he is a bit younger with a far shorter attention span!  *LOL*

I purchased some transparency sheets that print in a laser printer, they also make them for inkjet printers.  I bought a huge box at a local office supply store.

I used a graphic set from Lettering Delights called Smiley Supplies.  I set the crayons up near the middle of my paper and spelled my daughter's name so it says "Tiffany's Crayons" since the picture says crayons on it.

I printed this out in the center of my transparency sheet.

I determined that I wanted my box to be about 3 and 3/4 tall by 4 inches wide, and about 1 inch deep.  I did a little math and figured out that I wanted to cut my transparency sheets at 5 and 3/4 tall by 6 inches wide.  Then I used my Ultimate Crafter's Companion to make the box.  It has a box lid and a box base section, so it automatically makes the lid a bit larger.  If you don't have one of those you will need to make the lid slightly bigger or adjust your score marks.  I scored on the second line all the way around, which is about 1 inch for the Crafter's Companion.

It was hard to get the plastic to score nicely, but I did manage it.  I used Score Tape to secure the box together.  It does show up a lot, but I figured any adhesive would show, and this stuff is REALLY nice and strong to hold the plastic together.
I just placed a paper there behind the image so you could see a little better, I didn't adhere it.
The box holds 24 crayons right now, and honestly I could fit another layer if I wanted to.  I really only needed to make it 3/4 inches deep - but those measurements would have been harder so I just went up to an inch.

I'll be giving this to my daughter as a special way to store her crayons.  She loves to organize and arrange things so this is perfect for her.  If you want to give these as gifts it would be a good idea to secure them closed with a nice ribbon since the lid comes off so easily.

Thanks for stopping by!!!  
To continue the hop please head on over to Carri's Blog!  
Don't forget to join in on the challenge at Jovan's blog back where you started as well :)

Friday, August 12, 2011

Sew Stylish Card w/ A Video

Happy Friday!

I wanted to do a sewing themed card, and actually used my sewing machine to stitch on it.  I had lots of fun making it :)  

Here's the video for you with all the details.

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Pretty Bat Card

Here's a simple, but very pretty card.

The paper is from DCWV from their Midnight Spell Stack.

The stamps are from Close to My Heart from their Beware Set.

I stamped in Versamark ink and used Stampendous Pearlustre embossing powder in Amethyst.  I think it is really stunning on black cardstock.

I just cut around the flourish of bats by hand.  For the circle I trimmed the tips of the bats wings and then grabbed a circle Nestabilities die.  To avoid cutting the wing tips I put them on top of the die, away from the cutting blade.  This is easy and it works great.  The only thing is that you have to cut deeper into the wings than the Nestability cuts, so you do end up with tiny cut marks on your finished piece.  Honestly, they aren't really noticeable.  If that doesn't make any sense you can watch this video from Paper Prairie & Ink that explains and demonstrates it very clearly.

Halloween is my favorite holiday and last year I barely got a chance to make anything for it.  So, this year I'm starting early :)

Thanks for visiting and have a crafty day!

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

My First Stamp Made with the Teresa Collins Stampmaker

Hello everyone!

Today's post is basically a product review to share my experience with the Teresa Collins Stampmaker.  It is a long post, but I wanted to be very thorough about exactly how it went for me.
I have been wanting one since it was announced, but I watched and waited.  Listening to all the feedback.  A lot of people had complaints and problems, but some people were making gorgeous stamps and I heard that the customer service was amazing.  So, I took the plunge and ordered one from HSN that came with some extra stuff to get me started including a DVD from Above Rubies Studio.

Here's the deal!  I'm glad I bought the product.  It does work.  I am pleased with the stamp I created.  I am going to tell you about the whole process and what I did and didn't like about it.

First thing that happened was I was confused about how to get my negatives to print black enough.  Apparently laser printers are not good for this, so I used my regular inkjet printer.  I was able to get good results.  I set it to use the maximum amount of ink and all that.  Took a little playing with, and was actually the hardest part of the process for me.  Now that I know the settings that worked on my printer it will be easy for all future projects.

I was pretty paranoid about exposing my polymer packets to much light since it is possible for them to harden if exposed to certain lights.  I actually turned the lights off in my kitchen while I was prepping my stamp packet.  I had enough light in the room next to it that I was able to see.  I don't think this level of paranoia is necessary, but I wanted to be safe and not sorry.

I spent awhile really pushing the clamp together.  If the polymer isn't "smushed" evenly I could end up with a part of my stamp being higher and then it wouldn't stamp as well.  Because I had the lights off I figured I could spend as long as I wanted and it wouldn't hurt anything.

I turned my stampmaker on a couple minutes before I inserted the packet.  That way it had a chance to warm up.
I did use the "flash process" which is where you put the stamp in the wrong way for a very short amount of time to get a thin layer of polymer all over.  I heard this was good for intricate words and tiny stamps.  I counted 1, 2.  Very quickly!  Then removed it.  VERY short flash time was perfect.

I set my timer before I placed the stamp in so all I had to do was push start the second I put the stamp in.  I just used the timer on my microwave.

Cutting into the polymer packet was freakin' gross!  *LOL*  It smells, and it's SUPER sticky.  DO not use your favorite scissors.  Yes, it washes off, but eww.  My hands felt SO nasty.  I really hate being sticky so I did hate this part of the process.

ABSOLUTELY do this over a sink.  It is supposedly possible to do this with a bowl of warm water.  Honestly, I can't imagine doing that.  I spent several minutes at this even with super hot running water.  
First I rinsed the stamp to get a lot of the excess off.  Then I gently rubbed my fingers over it while still running the water.  I added a little dish detergent.  I found that kind of stuck to the polymer and was messy, but needed.  Finally I grabbed the brush that comes in the kit and went to work.  I used sort of a circular motion.  I focused on using one end of the brush and doing tiny sections at a time.  The stamp I made was small and delicate.  I didn't want to scratch it up or tear it.  So, I took my time.  No rush, just VERY slow and careful.  I held the stamp up many times to look at different angles and check for extra polymer in the tiny spaces in between the letters.

The last step was super easy.  I just put a little water in the plastic tray they provide.  Then I used the timer setting on the machine for how long to harden it.
Here's my stamp used a couple times.  Once in Craft pigment ink and once in a Classic Stampin' Up pad.  The photo isn't the best because the camera focused incorrectly.  It did stamp well.  Not 100% perfect, but very well.  WAY better than the cheap clear stamps.  Not as evenly as the more costly photopolymer stamps I have purchased, but pretty close.  I think a lot of that has to do with user error too.  The scrubbing didn't exactly feel natural to me.  I may have over scrubbed some sections.
Here's the breakdown of my opinions at this point.

I am glad I purchased it.  I think it was worth the cost, and the refills are pretty affordable.

I don't think it is as easy as they acted like it was on HSN.  The mess the polymer packet makes it pretty bad.  My hands took forever to wash.  I did have luck cleaning polymer off my countertop with minimal effort but my poor hands had to be scrubbed half to death.  I might try gloves in the future, but I suspect they may stick worse and make the process more difficult.

Timing is everything.  You have to pay attention to what you're doing.  The machine has lights, but really you do a fair amount of work too.  If you want instant gratification and no mess this probably isn't the product for you.

So yes, it works.  I'm a happy camper :)  It isn't mess free or only a 5 minute process.  However, it doesn't take hours either.  Now that I know how to get my negatives to print I imagine that once I had a design ready I could print the negative, cut it, and do everything else to create the stamp in under 20 minutes counting getting everything out and putting it away with full cleanup time.

I hope maybe this review helps some of you that maybe have considered this machine.  Truly I would recommend it, but only if you are willing to deal with a bit of a mess and some effort on your part. 

Monday, August 8, 2011

The Write Stuff Layout

Click on the Photo to See it Enlarged.
Today's layout is one that I whipped up for the latest challenge over at Scrapbookaholic By Abby.  It's a Back to School Challenge.  Be sure and head over there to check out what she and the other ladies made, as well as be able to link up your own creation.

I started off with a 6 by 6 inch sheet from the Echo Park Summer Days pack.  The lines sort of reminded me of lined paper for writing.

I layered it onto an burnt orange colored piece that's 6 and 1/4 square.

I added a pencil from the Simply Charmed cartridge.  I embellished it with some Sakura gel pen, some Stickles, and some googly eyes.

I spelled out "You've got the write stuff" using some flat letter stickers, my gel pen, and some Thickers.

I finished off this area with some green and pink buttons in the corners.

All of my photo mats are 3 by 5.

For the pink strip along the bottom it's about 1 and 3/4 inches wide.  I punched it using the EK Success Open Scallop border punch.

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Girlie Zebra Card

Just popping in with a fun little zebra card to share.

The background paper is from Me and My Big Ideas, cute huh?!

I used my Cricut to create this card.

The little zebra is from Create a Critter and is cut at 2.75 inches.  The flower in her hair is part of a K & Company embellishment.  Simple googly eyes, and then for her nostrils I added Black Diamond Stickles.  For her ear and her mouth I used some Liquid Pearls in Petal Pink.

Emma is cut from Ashylyns Alphabet at 1.15 inches.  I covered it in lots of Stickles.

Is is from the same cartridge, using the skinny font at 1 inch - very tiny letters were hard to work with!

The three is from Sweet Treats, I just wanted a super fat 3 and knew there were fat numbers on that cartridge.  It's cut at 2.25 inches.  I cut it using some paper from the My Mind's Eye Lime Twist Happy Go Lucky pad.  I outlined it with some Stickles.  It's layered on a scalloped circle cut with my Nestabilities, but you could easily cut one from a cartridge.

There's my card!  I love being able to make personalized ones like this that include a name and an age.  Kids cards are the most fun :)

So, the reason I've been MIA this week is that I've been sewing!  I am actually attempting to make myself a dress.  I go back and forth between being excited about my progress, and wanting to throw the thing out the window.  *LOL*  Of course I've been doing other things too, but the sewing is the reason I haven't done my usual crafty projects and postings this week.  Glad I got to whip this card up today and had something fun to share.  Not so sure the dress will be worth sharing.