Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Christmas Stocking Gift Card Holder

I was just telling my husband it's lucky I married his family. I wouldn't know what to do with my crafty self around Christmas time otherwise... my family isn't as into Christmas. Of course, in typical Belinda fashion, nothing was done beforehand despite the best of intentions. Oh well. Sometimes it's ok to let a few things slide... that's what I learned this Christmas.

For those people who travel during Christmastime, sometimes it's just easier to give a check or a gift card. Especially with those pesky luggage fees... but no one said that you can't make your packaging super adorable. Claire to the rescue! ;-)

Claire has a fabulous and free stocking shaped gift card holder template on the Waltzingmouse Stamps site for your use. I *adore* it and I hadn't had a chance to make anything with it yet, so when I realized at the last minute that I didn't have anything for S, I realized this would be perfect.

I used the Compliments of the Season set for the sentiment on the outside and the inside. The ribbon slides off and it's what is holding the the top down. You could use magnets or something instead, but I like the ribbon trick. I included a pic of the inside but my husband hasn't written the check yet, so it's empty right now. 

Secretly, I will tell you that I've been shaking my stocking every 5 minutes. The bells amuse me and I think my husband is getting more annoyed with each ring, which of course amuses me even more. Hah.

Monday, December 27, 2010

Poo and other things

I know I shared with some of you that my husband's family does a Christmas grab gift exchange. So far, my husband and I haven't partaken in the madness. This year, I suppose I was feeling a little less grinchy so I agreed we should partake this year. 

But in true Belinda fashion, it's no fun to bring a normal gift. I searched high and low to find something unusual, I asked everyone for ideas, and nothing was striking my fancy until we encountered this fabulous gem:


Ah poo! I couldn't resist....

I'm 27 and I still find toilet humor hilarious.

Sorry...

Since I don't think you're supposed to know who gave what until the gift exchange is over, I'm placing this in a store-bought bag (ok, one I saved from last year). But I just couldn't resist a crafty touch...


So we added a little Christmas poem about reindeer poop...

"Christmas is coming and so are the deer,
Listen carefully and you will hear,
and 'long with those comes a special treat,
Reindeer droppings for you to eat"

Granted the card game is about monkey poo but eh... little details....


We picked up some chocolates at Trader Joes for the edible poo portion of the gift. Chocolate covered blueberries, chocolate covered almonds and some chocolate mint creams - yum.

At the time of this post, I was still deciding if I should include a roll of toilet paper too. After all, I like to promote hygiene. But I'm not sure I can sacrifice a roll of my 3-ply... especially if not everyone appreciates my sense of humor...

But as of right now, I think I'm gonna go for it. ;-)

Friday, December 24, 2010

Merry Kiss-mas

Merry Christmas to you and yours! Hope you enjoy the season and have many quality memories of family and friend time. :)

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Noel

Just popping in now that I finally finished my Christmas wrapping. And I am exhausted... I will say the last few gifts got the shaft... ok, more than just the last few. But it's not like anyone's going to notice...

The only wrapping paper I had was this Martha Stewart wrapping paper (that's probably more appropriate for a baby shower, but shhhh). And in case anyone is curious... I'm not a fan of her wrapping paper. I'm not a good wrapper to begin with and her paper is so thick it doesn't allow for many mistakes. Oh well, I bought the paper on sale eons ago and it's high time we used it.

So I have some shots to share... 

I actually kept the gift in the original Starbucks bag. I believe in being green and it's not a bad looking bag... actually if any gift came in a reusable bag (aka a brown bag of sorts), I didn't bother re-wrapping it... Not sure if that makes me cheap or environmentally friendly...


So the stocking was my way of not feeling so bad about being so lame with the gift wrapping. The stocking holds an extra little gift card in addition to the coffee beans so the recipient can go get more of his favorite blend. And because try as I might, I couldn't find one of the blends he listed... and we went to quite a few Starbucks and confused quite a few employees.

Clare has made this lovely stocking shaped gift card holder template available on the Waltzingmouse Stamps site for FREE! The template makes it easy to whip these little suckers up - assuming you don't stupidly decided to add some hand stitching...But it does give it a nice homey touch, don't you think?

For some actually decorated bags, I give you these:

Here are some decorated baggies with my leftover papers. And some fun little ornament tags using Vintage Ornaments! Just a fun burst of non-traditional colors and I love it! The best thing, it takes maybe 5 seconds to whip these puppies together!

Now if everyone could ALWAYS request gifts that fit into these little white bags I'd be forever grateful. Hah!

And one more quickie card to share, one of the ones you can churn up when you realize that T sent you a card and you didn't send him one... whoops!

Yet another quickie with some stickers, a ribbon, and some simple dry embossing.I love simplicity.


Ok, off to get a Christmas drink! ;-)

Monday, December 20, 2010

Joy

One more week until Christmas. We finally finished our Christmas shopping -- and we have a few packages en route that I'm hoping will get here in time for Christmas. Just a few more Christmas crafts to finish up and let me tell you, it's not the end of the world if I don't get to it...

Is everyone done with their Holiday cards? I just finished addressing my envelopes as I type this... and I apologize to all my friends and family. The later it got, the worse the insides look. Some of you guys are lucky if I signed my name. Hah.

When it comes to last minute cards, there's nothing like a few sticker, some patterned paper and ribbon to do the trick! I love stickers... always have, always will. Sometimes when I'm bored, I'll stick one on the hubs and see how long it takes for him to figure it out. Hah.

Hope you guys are all enjoying the time with your family and friends. :) 

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Best Wishes

I love weddings. I love them, big or small. I love them, elegant or crazy fun. I love them even more when I don't have to plan them or be a part of them! So when I recently heard the fabulous news of my friend's nuptials, I was shocked, then excited that I didn't have to be a part of the wedding and then just plain happy for the two newlyweds. Yes, I'm horrible... but being a bridesmaid is an honor I'll happily do without.

So I have a card ready to send her. I'm a little slow in sending it to her as well, that's me. I haven't actually mailed this card out yet as I'm on my way home today from a business trip. But I hope the little gift on the inside will make up for my tardiness.

Since I didn't have a wedding color palette to work with, I opted to go with a Tiffany's inspired color palette. At worst case, it's definitely a neutral wedding color motif. I stamped the flowers from Big Blooms - Chrysanthemums. I wanted to create a "link" between the white and aqua color so I stamped 1/2 the flower in aqua on the white and 1/2 the flower in white on the aqua. I think it's a fun effect but maybe it's just me. :) The sentiment comes from Fancy Phrases.

In case she's reading this, congrats on joining the Mrs. club! ;-) 

Thanks for stopping by!

Monday, December 13, 2010

Winter Wishes

SNOW! :) The first snow of the season where I can't see grass! Except it's more like "ugh, snow" since I'll need to drive today (rather than just take the bus). It's been snowing still although less so maybe by the time I need to head out and come back, it'll be much better...

This year, I opted to just send everyone a UNIQUE card rather than try to mass produce. So starting around October, I've been creating some fun holiday cards. I figured since we are in the process of addressing our holiday cards, I can share a few. :)

In honor of snow:
Here's a little card I created as part of my Christmas "set". Just some patterned paper, a chipboard girl that looks like a little Eskimo Belinda, and some button "snow". Quick and dirty since it's a busy week.

Thanks for stopping by and have a fabulous week!

Friday, December 10, 2010

Waltzingmouse Twelve Days of Christmas

ETA: I created the hat from paper. Added some more details to step 6


Hi there! I am pleased to be your hostess this morning for Day 5 of the Twelve Days of Christmas, Waltzingmouse Style! Be sure to check out the WMS Blog for the past few days and for the upcoming days!

Normally at this time we would be previewing new stamp sets for release. However, this month WMS is taking a break from releasing new stamps to allow us (all!) to enjoy the holidays with family and friends, as well as to focus on some fantastic things happening behind-the-scenes! It is all very exciting, and we appreciate your enthusiasm!

In lieu of a release this month, we are instead coming together to bring you some ideas and inspiration for holiday crafting (and beyond) which we are calling the Twelve Days of Christmas, Waltzingmouse Style! Each day will showcase a different Design Team member, so be sure to check the WMS Blog daily through December 17th for the links.

So on the 5th day of Christmas, I present a fun little gift for your friends, family and neighbors.

I present to you snowmen spa tubes. :) They're something you can make for the young at heart or even let the little ones help. I know most of us are super busy around this time so I wanted to create something relatively easy to mass produce as well.

I filled some test tubes with bath salts -- after the stressful holidays, the recipient can relax in their own tub. To make the tubes festive, I decided to make my tube a snowman. And what snowman can go to his new home without a snazzy carrier?


Just because I used bath salts, doesn't mean you have to -- you can really fill it with anything. You can fill it with hot cocoa, bath salts, jelly beans, nuts, the list goes on. Since it's chilly outside, I made some hot cocoa ones (layers of hot cocoa, chocolate chips and marshmallows) as well - yum!

I took some pictures while making this little snowmen in case you'd like to try them as well.

1. Gather your supplies.
  • Test Tube(s) - Mine are 6 inches with a 1 inch diameter that I got from Etsy (In the Clear).
  • Gems
  • Ribbon
  • Adhesive
2. (Optional) Color your gems. I don't have black gems so I used a Sharpie marker to color my gems black.

3. Adhere gems to your test tube (which I had already filled with bath salts (so you can see the gems)

4. Cut and color your snowman nose. I used the end of a wooden skewer which I made my husband saw for me which then caused him to curse all things craft as he hurt his finger. Carrie told me that I should have used garden shears instead (if only we owned such things).

5. Tie ribbon around snowman. You can see right now that one end sticks up...

6. With a glue dot, adhere the ribbon down. Finish decorating the snowman as you see fit.
For the hat, I wrapped a thin strip of black paper around the tube. The hat lid is created by creating a ring with my circle punches (outer diameter is 1 3/8 inch and the inner diameter is 1 1/8).

If you run out of time, you could just tie a tag to the snowman's scarf and stop here.

7. Create box. Cut a 8.5" by 5" cardstock. (This means you can create 2 boxes with one piece of cardstock). Place it in the landscape direction and score at 1.5", 3.5", 5", and 7".

8. Turn it in the portrait direction and score at 1.5" and 3.5".

9. Make 1.5" cuts from the top of the page and from the bottom.

10. Use the nesties to cut a circle.

11. Assemble the box. Cut two 2" by 8.5" pieces of acrylic cardstock for the sides of the holder. I used the SU! word window punch to punch handles for my holder, scored my acrylic sheet one end at the 2 inch mark (for the base) and the at the other end at the 1 3/4 inch mark and the 2 3/4 inch mark.

12. Decorate your box as you see fit and place your snowman in. For the box, I stamped the pattern from Pic-Nic Patterns and created a simple little band with the let it snow sentiment from Compliments of the Season. I created a little tag for the top and tied it with a bit of silver twine.

Hope you enjoyed the 5th day of the Twelve Days of WMS Christmas. Thanks for stopping by!


Stamps: (Compliments of the Season, Pic-Nic Patterns, Half Baked, Around Christmastime )
Accents: (gems) Hero Arts
Fibers: (ribbon) Craft Supply, (silver twine) Jewelry Essentials
Tools: (Word Window Punch) SU!, (circle die) Spellbinders
Other: (tubes) In the Clear Etsy Shop, (skewers)

Tuesday, December 07, 2010

Ahoy Sailor

To help with your Christmas inspiration, all the WMS DT members are coming together for 12 Days of Christmas Waltzingmouse Style! Each day will showcase a different design team member, so be sure to check back Claire's blog through December 17th for the links... and enjoy! I will be posting my project this Friday so I've been busy behind the scenes.

Some of you may have seen this already but I never actually blogged about it. I created this for a friend who had a baby boy. :) I used some brads to give a fun "water" texture. Sweet and simple.

I had intended to make some matching onesies, but those never materialized...  maybe one of these days...



Cardstock, Patterned Paper: Papertrey Ink
Stamps: (Bitty Baby Blessings) Papertrey Ink
Accents: (brads) Making Memories
Tools: (Swiss Dots Embossing Folder) Provo Craft

Thursday, December 02, 2010

September CARDS

This doldrum period hits my crafty desires as well so we're going into the archives to find a card to share. This card was published in the September issue of CARDS Magazine.  (Thanks, CARDS!) Lots of great inspiration as usual! Be sure to check it out!

The spools are cut out from patterned paper. You know I'm not normally a fan of cutting out images from patterned paper but I've been enjoying it more and more. It's quite calming to do so. The buttons on the left are some fun rubons -- love that they turned out so vibrant even on kraft.

Monday, November 29, 2010

The new Paper Crafts special issue Card Creations: Favorite Occasions was released recently and I was lucky enough to have a card picked up for it (Thanks Paper Crafts!). Make sure you it out. It's filled with great ideas for the common card making occasions!


A little typography, a lot of stamping and a cute little love card. :)

Thanks for stopping by!

Monday, November 22, 2010

Out of this World Birthday

Last year I made our friend D a birthday card per request of the hubs. When we went to go visit him in the summer, he pulled out my card (that he had saved for at least 6 months) and showed it to everyone in attendance. With that kind of love, how do you not give D a personalized card this year? With that act, he single handedly insured himself a fabulous card every year. 

Since D is a big Star Trek fan, I thought that the spaceship from Half Pint Heroes would be perfect. Now I had tried to come up with some pun relating to trekkie-ness. However, try as I might, nothing was coming to me. I asked the hubs to help but he just had a grand time laughing at my attempts.

Ok, given that I couldn't come up with a pun, the next logical thing is to create a shape card. So I opted for a moon shaped card, which in retrospect wasn't the grandest of plans. It's actually quite a small card given that my largest circle die was 4 1/4 inches wide. I cannot wait to get my hands on a Grand Calibur and some larger dies... That said, I'm very good at writing small and luckily D isn't old enough to need bifocals yet.



A bit of coloring to attempt to personalize the face in the middle and some glossy accents on the windows adds some fun details. Although this is a "winter" version of him... I couldn't get his face dark enough although I did give him some stubble on his chin. ;-) Figured that after studying so hard for his crazy exams that I probably wasn't too wrong on the stubble.  (Also it was when I realized the color I was using was a bit dark for his skin... but shhhhh!)

Happy Belated D! (Sorry we're always late as we just put this card in the mail earlier today..)



Stamps: (Half Pint Heroes) Waltzingmouse Stamps
Cardstock: PTI
Ink: (Tuxedo Black) Tsukineko
Coloring Medium: (markers) Copics
Accents: (gems) Hero Arts, (glossy accents) Ranger
Tools: (star punch) Fiskars, (circle die) Spellbinders

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Love you

My hard drive died recently and with it, all my craft pictures. Since I travel often and usually with only a few day's notice, I have a pile of cards that I use for blog fodder when I'm not around. So for the next few weeks blogging might be a little slower as I need to build up my arsenal of fodder again. I'm also slowly reinstalling all my software. Sigh...  As a public service announcement, be sure to backup your files! :) Although the only thing I really didn't back up is my craft files and I managed to recover most everything else.

Luckily I have the entire next week off -- woohoo for Thanksgiving! :) Although given the state of my little abode, I'm spending most of next week cleaning and then the rest cooking and then cleaning up after my cooking mess. Ah, Thanksgiving.

With the recent holiday stress, it's nice to remind your friends and family that you love them and all the talk about Thanksgiving/Christmas is just temporary. I'm pretty sure my husband wants to rip his ears out right now and would prefer I talk about things aside from turkey. Perhaps I'll give him some earplugs for Christmas...

This is a simple quicky card with a little stamping and some scraps.  I added some pearls to the swirls and to the scalloped border. I really love the look of stamping over stamps but I just don't do it enough. Perhaps that should be remedied.

Anyways, have a great rest of the weekend!

Stamps: (Sweethearts) Waltzingmouse Stamps, (Flourish, Polka Dot Basics 2) PTI
Cardstock, Ribbon: PTI
Accents: (pearls) Hero Arts
Tools: (border punch) Fiskars

Friday, November 19, 2010

Nov/Dec Paper Crafts

I'm just sharing a card I was lucky enough to have picked up for the November/December 2010 issue of Paper Crafts (Thanks Paper Crafts!). Make sure you check out the current issue. It's filled with great holiday ideas!


My project is an online bonus feature so you can see it here. Since it's time to ring those Xmas bells soon, I felt it was time to share this little project on the blog as well.


Thanks for stopping by and have a fabulous day!

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

WMS November Customer Waltz - Candle Tutorial

ETA: I have never had issues with burning the tissue paper -- if you are worried, I'd suggest punching a slightly larger hole where you thread the wick

Welcome to the WMS Customer Waltz! You should be sure to check out all the fabulous projects at the WMS forum! :) And as usual, there's a fun game as well. Spot all the watermarks in the WMS DT member's photos and you could win a fun prize. We might have 0 watermarks, 1,2, 3 or more!

This month's theme is Christmas so I figured I'd share a Christmas gift idea. I made a set of candles the other weekend and I thought I'd share the process. I'm one of those people that needs to hand out "perfect" candles... so I had my husband dig through our mini tea light candles to find perfect ones for this gift set.

That said, I don't have enough to create one for each family member as I originally intended. Perhaps... I'll get my bum out to pick up more or one lucky person will just get this "Belinda" original. It's really starting to look like the later as the Xmas season stresses me out. My perfectionist tendencies are not optimal for the gift frenzy season.




So let's get started shall we? These are actually really quick to make and they look fabulous. It always amazes me how much you can do with a little tissue paper and some wax.

 1. Gather your supplies - I used a 1 3/8 inch circle punch, snowflake from Seasons of Love - Tags, ink, tissue paper, and candles


2. Stamp the snowflake onto the tissue paper. I usually test an image by placing it onto my candle to see what works best.


 3. Punch out your snowflakes. To give my tissue paper more umph, I slip a post-it note behind so that I get a clean punch.


 4. Punch a hole in the middle of your snowflake


 5. Thread the tissue paper snowflakes onto your candle.


 6. Using your trusty heat gun, apply heat until the wax starts to melt. It'll pull the tissue paper in (and I keep a paper piercer nearby that I use to help it along). Be careful not to hold the heat too long or it'll burn the tissue paper.


 6. Ta da! You have pretty candles. Now wrap them up all nice and tight. Add some pretty decorations and you have a great Xmas gift.

 7. I'm going to admit, I usually eye the boxes. I place three candles on the paper, mark the edges and score them. Then I measure the height of the candle. I determined it was 6/8 inches so I scored two lines in each direction 6/8 inches apart.

 8. Using some oragami skills, I cut some corners, folded and created a box.  (Ok, I apologize for this part of the tutorial. If there is interest, I can do a better box tutorial. Unfortunately, I tend to just use a little simple math usually to get my box and never write down measurements).


9. Decorate the box as you see fit.


Stamps: (Seasons of Love - Tags) Waltzingmouse Stamps
Cardstock: Bazzill, (acrylic) Office Max
Patterned Paper: (Colorful Christmas) My Mind's Eye
Fibers: (ribbon) American Crafts, (silver twine)
Accents: (button) Making Memories, (gems) Hero Arts
Tools: (circle punches) EK Success