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Merry Christmas!

Hope everyone had a great holiday. I just wanted to share with you real quick the cards and the ornaments that my super creative nieces made. For the past two years, I have been taking both of them and helped them make cards and gifts for their parents and grandparents. This year, my younger niece, Bella, requested to come on her own and it was much easier. SInce they are two different ages, it was easier to tailor the gifts and card making to each one’s abilities and styles. Last year they did a joint gift for their Nona and Pop-Pop, but this year I had them make separate things.

Allie wanted to do all three cards the same – one for her Mom-Mom and Pop-Pop, one for her Nona and Pop-Pop and one for her parents. I also gave her two choices of presents (leaning more towards one because, well, I kinda wanted to see how they would turn out more than the other! HAHA). Bella, however, wanted to make two completely different cards for her Nona and Pop-pop and her parents. I found the idea for her presents on Pinterest. (What would we do without Pinterest, by the way?? LOVE it!)

So, here are the things that they created. I think that they did an amazing job and I am always fascinated at the ideas they have for their gifts and cards. Great job girls!!

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Supplies used:

Penguin Ornaments – Plastic ornaments from Michael’s, Fake snow from Dollar Tree, Cricut images, Cricut Explore, Snowflake paper from Hobby Lobby, colored card stock from Michael’s, Tombow glue, Pop dots from Michael’s dollar bin

Snowman and Reindeer Ornaments – Popsicle sticks from Michael’s, acrylic paint from Michael’s, card stock from Michael’s, hot glue gun, Circle punches from Fiskar’s

Cards – Cardstock from Michael’s, Cricut images, Cricut Explore, glitter glue from Studio G, MFT Stamps and dies, Crayola crayons, embossing folder (Divine Swirls), Cuttlebug for embossing and die cutting

Thanks for stopping by! Feel free to leave comments or questions and subscribe.

Michele

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Sketch Sunday #17

Hi everyone! It’s Sunday again. Boo. Sadly, it means another week of work. Luckily, my work week only consists of two day this week. Even so, I am dreading this Sunday night. The hours of the day are going too quickly and I still have a To Do List a mile long. And somehow, with each thing that gets checked off, at least one more thing replaces it. Ugh.

However, one of the (only) good things about Sunday is that it’s the day I get to do my Sketch Sunday videos. I really look forward to making them! As I have the past couple of Sketch Sundays, I used the My Favorite Things Sketch for my card. Their blog info is http://www.mftstamps.com/blog/category/wednesday-stamp-club/ if you want to go over and check out the sketch!

Today happens to be my Sister in Law’s birthday. I know that I should have made her card before now, but with the craft shows, work and just trying to get things done around the house, there isn’t much time left to do things ahead of time. So, I decided to use this week’s sketch to make her card. Not a bad idea – two birds with one stone, right?and

I found the stamp set from My Favorite Thing that I wanted to use for her card. She loves cats so I decided to use the stamp set Pure Innocence Kitty Costume. First, I took a Nestabilities die and cut the shape from 65 lb white card stock from Recollections. I then stamped the main image in Momento Tuxedo black ink (because I don’t have the MFT black ink – yet! It’s on order!!!) I die cut a larger die from the same collection in a light blue paper, also from Recollections. I took a sponge dauber and some Distress ink in Broken China and inked around the edges of the two shapes I cut out, as well as the background and the patterned paper.

I colored in the girl dressed as a cat using Promarkers, distress markers and Studio G markers. I stamped the girl again on patterned paper and then cut her dress out so that I could paper piece it to the image on the cut out shape. I did this by using a Zig Two Way Glue pen.

I took a piece of 110 lb white card stock and cut it down to 7″ x 10″ and folded it in half to make a 5″ x 7″ card base. I cut the blue piece of card stock for the background to an 1/8″ smaller than the card base. The patterned paper that I used is from the American Crafts Hip Hip Hooray paper pad. I used that as inspiration for the color pallet for the rest of the card. Her dress came from the paper pad Oh Darling by Crate Paper. The last pieces of card stock that I used were some scraps that I had lying around. They all come from Michael’s Recollections line – all open stock paper.

I used several My Favorite Things dies. The first is the letters dies and the second is the party hat accompanying pieces. The latter was not in the YouTube video – it was added after the video was done because I looked at the card and it seemed like it still needed a “little something”. I also used some clear glitter glue on top of the letters to give it a little sparkle.

Here’s what the card looks like all finished:

IMG_2520

What do you think? Here’s the link to the YouTube video so you can see before I added a couple of things:  http://youtu.be/p9d-vtj1wYo

Thanks for stopping by! Feel free to leave comments or questions and subscribe. I love hearing from you!

Michele

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Washi tape and dies

I was designing some new cards yesterday and I used the Simon Says Stamp numbers dies to cut out a bunch of numbers for the front of the card. The sentiment said on a 1-10 scale you’re an 11 (or something to that effect) so I thought it would be cute to have numbers floating around on the background. I took my dies and cut the numbers out of patterned paper. THen, I had to glue each one to cardbase individually.

After I was done that, I thought I might try some washi tape on the front to hold the sentiment down. I decided against it because it didn’t look right. But then I thought, why not use washi tape to cut the numbers instead of card stock? This way I can skip a step as they would already be sticky enough to just put on the card front?

Genius! Why hadn’t I thought of this sooner? I use washi tape to hold dies in place in my Cuttlebug, but never did I think to cut things out using the tape. So, I started a little experiment.

First, I used my thicker washi tape because the thinner rolls weren’t wide enough to cut the whole number out. I used my Genius platform (no pun intended!!) and stuck the die down to the base so that the cutting blade was face up. Then I put the washi tape over the number 3, sticky side facing up. After I ran it though the Cuttlebug, I nervously lifted the top off and saw it cut through. Success!! I essentially had a sticker “3”!

So, then I decided to be brave and try the die from Simon Says Stamp that says “baby”. It’s a very intricate die and a little wider than the washi tape so I put it at an angle. It wasn’t staying put so I used some smaller pieces of washi tape to hold the tape down. Unfortunately, the results weren’t as good as the first time. Since the die was so delicate, it was tough to get the washi tape off the top of the sandwich. The washi tape tore a little.

Using washi tape and dies in the Cuttlebug is something I will experiment with again. I will try it with less intricate dies, like the numbers and border dies to see the results. I haven’t actually made anything with the washi tape, but I plan on it! It was a fun thing to try and I encourage you to use your supplies in a unique way. You never know what you will come up with!

Michele

Explosion box

A couple of months ago, I stumbled upon a video on how to make an explosion box. Since it was a step by step video, I used that to help me make my first one. I didn’t go crazy decorating it, but I still think it turned out cute.

When we were trying to come up with an idea for my sister and her fiancé’s wedding gift, we decided to get them a gift certificate to the hotel that they were staying at. This way, they could use it for dinner, drinks, the room, sightseeing or whatever else they wanted. If you know me (or have read some of my other posts), I couldn’t just give them a gift card or a card saying that the gift card is waiting for them in Hawaii.

So, I decided to make them an explosion box! I thought that I could decorate part of it with wedding related icons and the other part with Hawaii related items. I started off with the outer most layer. I knew I wanted this to be the wedding part, since it was for their wedding! I created the bride from the Everyday Paper Doll cartridge. When I tried to cut the flowers out for the bride, the paper kept ripping since it had to be cut so small. Instead, I cut them out in blackout and then ran them through my Cuttlebug Swiss Dots folder. This gave the effect of the center of the flower and then I was able to just draw the outline of the flowers around them. I used Frosted Lace Stickles around her veil to give it some shine. Jackie

I used the same cartridge for the groom, but since this was a beach wedding he wasn’t going to wear a tux. I chose the prom boy suit and then made it tan. I added some white gel pen stripes to the tie to help it stand out from the suit. Andy

The next side I did was the Mr and Mrs and rings side. I cut these pieces from my Sweethearts cartridge. When the rings were cut out, you couldn’t really see the lines in the diamond, so I went over them with my teal pen. Then I decided to use my silver stickles to go over the bands and then my Diamond stickles to go over the diamond. I used one of my blue stickles to go over the words Mr and Mrs. Ringsoutside 1

For the last side of the outside of the box, I chose a sticker that I already had of a wedding cake. It looked a little plain to me so I added Cotton Candy stickles over the flowers to give it some color and some white stickles to the frosting on the layers to give it some more dimension. After that was done, I had the four outside panels of my box done. Cake

The next step was to create pockets on the backs of the outermost layer. I did this by taking patterned paper and cutting them down to the same size as the layer and then taking my scallop punch and punching out a little lip in each pocket top. I decided to use wedding words and icon stamps I had in my collection to go on the inserts. I stamped the images in VersaMark and then heat embossed them with white powder. Embossed image inside layer 1

The other layers of the explosion box were created in the same manor. I used cartridges Pack Your Bags and Life is a Beach for the majority of these images. I also used a couple of the embossing folders I had that said love and together forever. I used some clothes pins that I picked up on clearance at Michaels. Stickles were used to enhance some of the words or images. I tried to use a variety of techniques when I designed the explosion box. Here are the results:

Layer 3 side 1Layer 3 side 2Layer 3 side 4Inside

For the last layer’s pockets, I found a quote that I was able to divide up into four parts. I used the clothes pins to number each paper and then added an envelope to the bottom of the inside layer. In that envelope was a message to the bride and groom explaining that their present from all 8 of their siblings was waiting for them in Hawaii.

Here is what the final product looked liked on the night the siblings gave the present to the bride and groom. Unfortunately, the lid didn’t fare so well in its travels. (It had to be put in a carry on all the way to Mexico – I’m surprised it made it at all!! )

As always, feel free to leave questions or comments. Thanks for stopping by!

Using Kate’s ABC’s to make an Easter card

This year I decided to make everyone an Easter card. When it came time to make one for my goddaughter, I wanted to do something less traditional than an Easter bunny or some Easter eggs since most of my other cards are going to feature those images. I looked at my Cricut cartridges and saw Kate’s ABC’s. Never having used it, I thought maybe this was the perfect opportunity.

Kate’s ABC’s has classic girl images. They almost remind me of Holly Hobby type images – sweet little girls and cute accessories. It features shoes, hats, purses, animals little girls love (rabbits, cats, goldfish) and cute phrases. If you are doing an alphabet scrapbook, this one has phrases for every letter (s is for shoes – my favorite!!).

As I went through the images, I found a little girl sitting on a patch of grass, wearing an overcoat and a hat holding a bunny. It had a very spring feel to it and with the bunny I thought it would be perfect for Easter. Using Girl4, I cut the base out of brown, Girl4 shift in green, Girl4 layer 1 in dark pink for the under part of her coat and hat, Girl4 layer 1 shift in light pink for the  for the outer part of her coat and hat, Girl4 layer 2 in beige for the skin tone, Girl4 layer 2 shift in yellow for her hair and the center of the flowers. All of the cuts were made at 4 inches. There are some intricate cuts around the grass so I used medium speed.

Once all the pieces were cut out, I started to assemble them. First you place the green layer over the brown layer. The flowers from the brown layer are separate and you don’t have to use them. The next step was to glue all of the skin tone pieces on, starting with the face. You can glue the hair directly to the face or glue the face to the brown piece and then the hair to that. Place the feet and the one hand on the brown piece. It’s nice because when you cut the layers, there are little marks that get cut to show you where the next layer’s parts will be placed.

Before I attached the coat, I ran the light pink through the Cuttlebug with the Swiss Dots folder, just to give it a little dimension. I then glued the light pink pieces to the dark pink pieces for both the coat and the hat. I assembled all three flowers (two go above the grass and one goes on her hat). The image was complete!

My next step was to apply it to the card. When I was placing it down, I thought that there needed to be something underneath her. I chose a blue strip of Bazzil card stock that I had in my scraps. I also used the same ribbon I used on the other Easter card – it says Happy Easter and each letter is in an egg. I may add a small sun to the top right corner, but I haven’t found one I liked yet. For the envelope, I took my maroon chalk ink and inked up the large Easter egg stamp I have and placed it on the flap. All that is left now is to write a message to my goddaughter on the inside of the card.

When I got this cartridge, I was a little hesitant to use it because of some of the designs like this one. They are intricate and time consuming to put together. But once they are done, the image is adorable and well worth the time that it took. Usually I spend so much time on the concept for the card that I go with more simple images from the Cricut. I really like the way this turned out and I think I will be using Kate’s ABC’s to make more cards. I like that the booklet uses a different color for each layer so that when you are trying to figure out what color to make each layer, it’s much easier. With some of the cartridges, I have to guess and I don’t always guess right. That leaves me frustrated. But ProvoCraft seems to have changed that on the newer cartridges and it makes completing a project much easier. If you are looking for a really sweet cartridge to make images for anything for a little girl, this is one I would recommend. The boy version of this is Nate’s ABC’s.

Here is how the card turned out – I’m very happy with it!Card and envelopeCard

As always, please feel free to leave a comment. Thanks for stopping by!

Using the Cuttlebug for program fans

I have been starting to use the Cuttlebug more and more for projects lately. When I bought it right after Christmas (thanks to some gift cards that were given to me by my sister and future brother-in-law!) I wasn’t sure how much I would use it. I think I tend to have an obsession – I buy something and then use it a lot and amass lots of its accessories. Then I tend to forget about it and come back to it months later.

So lately I’ve been on a Cuttlebug kick. I guess you can say its thanks to the two who originally helped me buy it! My sister purchased the program fans from AC Moore and was trying to figure out what to do with them. The groom’s mom and the groom both agreed that they would look better with a picture in them. My sister, her fiancé and I all took a trip to AC Moore to try to find a punch that would work with fans. But, most punches only come up a couple of inches from the bottom of the paper and the Martha Stewart punch around the page punches don’t have openings large enough for a picture. What a dilemma.

I came up with a solution that I thought would work, but my sister’s fiancé wanted to ask the lady who worked at the store. She came up with a circle template and circle cutter that would cost almost $30! Then someone (not me!) would have to sit there and cut out 44 circles. He said he would do it – but everyone knows what that means! I can’t see him sitting there cutting out all those circles.

So we went back to my solution. The Cuttlebug. Sizzle makes these Nestabilities dies that will cut or emboss shapes and gives you a range of sizes (usually 5 to 8 die cuts in each package). I took them back over to that section and they decided that they wanted the oval package. Normally they are $24.99. It was one of AC Moore’s Midnight Madness sales where they offer 20% off everything and the dies were already 40% off.

First, they printed whatever they wanted on their fans, leaving room for the picture. Then they punched the fans out and taking the paper trimmer, cut down the folding line. I was given the front half of the fan to be run through the Cuttlebug with the correct size oval. Even though I had to run 44 of them through the machine, it only took me about an hour. If we had gone with the circle cutter and template, who knows how long that would have taken! (Plus I can never seem to get a good circle cut out of those things. Could be user error though!)

They asked me to do one more thing before giving the fronts back to them, but I will wait until after the wedding to reveal the final fan!

Hope this helps you find another use for your Cuttlebug! Happy scrapping!

Wood grain

I just love the look of wood grain. I have several different background papers that feature it – even a purple wood grain one! So when I saw an embossing folder by Tim Holtz for Sizzix that had one brick wall and one wood grain folder, I immediately got it.

Once I got the folders home, I wasn’t sure what to use it with. I typed in wood grain embossing folder into YouTube and there were a couple of good videos that came up. The one I liked most was Britta Swiderski’s where she creates a floor pattern from the wood grain embossing folder.

I tried to emulate what she created in the video. First, you cover a piece of plain white card stock in tea dye ink. Next you run that through the Cuttlebug with the wood grain folder. Then you take vintage photo and use the ink blending tool on the paper.

The next step is to score the paper. First you turn the paper over and line it up on the scoring board. I made score marks every half-inch. Once the paper was completely scored, I turned it so that the lines I made were now horizontal as opposed to vertical. Then I put score marks in to make it look like hardwood floors.

After all the scoring is done, run the Vintage photo ink direct to paper and the lines really pop! If necessary, use your ink blending tool to smooth out any areas where there might be too much ink.

The only problem with that is that the Tim Holtz embossing folder looks like one piece of wood enlarged, where as the paper tray ink one Britta used looks more like the true grain so that if you are making a door or pieces of the floor, it looks more realistic. I guess that means a trip to Hobby Lobby once I can drive far again! (For those of you that don’t know, they opened up a Hobby Lobby in Vineland, NJ right across from where the ShopRite is located. I can’t wait to go check it out – I hear people talking about it on their YouTube videos, but I’ve never been to one. So excited!)

Anyway, here is a look at what the final piece looks like. I will attach it to a card or scrapbook page soon! Thanks for stopping by! As always, feel free to leave comments or questions.