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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!!


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.


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Facebook group – Play Along’s Paper Bag Mini Album Challenge

Recently, I signed up for a group on Facebook called Play Along, which offers a bunch of challenges. Some are for prizes, some for fun, some have deadlines and others are open-ended. It all started out because of YouTube!

A couple of weeks ago when I was home, sitting on the couch, I looked to YouTube for inspiration. I came across this YouTube channel called My Sister’s Scrapper. Ginger, the woman running the channel, was making these paper bag mini albums. So, I thought, I could do this once I get better and get back to my craft room. And, that’s as far as I got! Until the other day.

I also subscribe to a blog written by a woman named Janis. Her blog is Pause Dream Enjoy. I found her blog from a YouTube channel that I follow called CardzTV. Anyway, in this blog was a link to the Facebook page and on that page was the challenge to make one of the Paper Bag mini albums. I figured that since I saw the challenge, I should at least attempt to make one. 

So I did. I went through my house and gathered up the necessary items and then started watching all the parts to her videos. Her directions are so clear and precise – I was amazed that even I could follow them!! It does take a while to construct the basic form of the album, but I was really impressed with how mine turned out. I have a few things to keep in mind for the next one, but the simple fact that I said I will make a “next one” shows you how easy it was to follow along with the videos.

Just a couple of tips if you are going to play along. Janis says that the albums take a lot of paper and they do. I used a My Mind’s Eye paper pack called Lost & Found. I also supplemented with some plain colored card stock that I embossed (both dry and powder) or used punches to add decorations to, as well as some coordinating card stock. She also suggests that you go through your paper pack (if you are using one) and pick the cover paper first. That way, you don’t use those pages on something else. The cover is one of the last things you will do.

Here are some pictures of what my paper bag mini album looks like so far. I have a lot more to do – make tags for inside the top of the paper bag part and tags for the pockets inside and work on the embellishment parts of the album. I’m not sure if this is going to go up on Etsy or not. SInce it’s the first one I’ve done, I am not sure if I want to keep it or not. Let me know what you think. 

The cover:

ImageThe front inside cover:

ImageThe back inside cover (with a waterfall feature):

ImageThanks for stopping by and checking out my paper bag mini album. Once I finish this, I will post an update with more pictures. I am hoping to work on it this weekend, so hopefully you will be able to see the finished product soon. Feel free to leave a comment and subscribe!

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!

Challenge # 8

I was curious to see how much I could do with an embossed image. When I was watching the YouTube and TwoPeas videos, there were a lot of different ideas. As I started going through the ones I wrote down, I found one I thought I could use on this page.

I used a couple of different embossing folders on this layout. I used two different swirled ones to create hearts to compliment the hearts that were on the page already. I used scraps of grey and pink which are two of the main colors in the background page. I used my Fiskars small and extra-large heart punches to create the hearts after I ran the paper through the Cuttlebug.

The last embossing folder I used comes from the Sizzix wedding set. It says Together Forever in a script font. This is where I used a new technique. I took a light grey piece of scrap paper and ran it through the Cuttlebug using the Together Forever folder. Then I used VersaMark and covered the entire surface of the embossed image. Once the VersaMark was on the image, I used clear embossing powder and the heat gum to set the powder. This technique gives you a slightly darker image than the original with a little bit of a shine. I think it makes the embossed image stand out more than if you just left it.

To finish off the page, I took a scrap piece of pink paper and wrote in silver ink a line from a song. I also took a rectangle pink scrap paper and embossed it with the same swirl folder I used on the pink hearts. I placed the Together Forever embossed piece on top of that paper and decided it needed a little something so I took the design scissors and cut a fancy edge around the image.
Embossed phrase
I then glued all the pieces down and added the pictures. I had placed the pictures side by side with no spacing in between and matted them on the same grey paper I used earlier. I also used a grey chalk ink to lightly ink the edges of the mat.

Here are the results:
Full layout

Hope this gives you some ideas for new techniques! As always, feel free to comment.