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

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Christmas Thank Yous

Before we begin, I just wanted to remind everyone that today is Veteran's Day. Thank you to those who have served, to those currently serving, and especially those who have given their lives for our country. May God Bless you and your families.

I don't know about you guys, but I still write Christmas thank you notes. My husband tells me every year that there's no need to bother but I still feel like it needs to be said. And I'll be honest, every year I forget one or two people.... but not this year as I decided to start my Christmas thank you cards early!

Maybe it's just me but I hate make the same card twice. I'm not a mass producer. If I'm using the same layout, I'll try using different colors. If I'm using the same image, I'll use different layouts.  I picked one of the images from the set Around Christmastime and did 3 different layouts with it.

One of the things I've noticed is that people tend to like interactive cards. So this year, I opted to do some as pocket cards. I used some glassine bags I have and trimmed the edges with my decorative edge scissors. And then I went to town.

They're all different in their own way -- Sometimes I inked the edges.
 
This one used a touch of a lace doily.

And who says you need a sentiment? Sometimes its the inside that counts!  (Ok and I couldn't figure out a good place to add the sentiment so sue me). 

Thanks for stopping by!





Stamps: (Around Christmastime, Frame It, Fancy Phrases) Waltzingmouse Stamps
Cardstock, Patterned Paper: PTI
Accents: (gems) Hero Arts, (doiles) Wilton, (stick pin) Making Memories
Tools: (dies) Spellbinders, (1 3/4 inch circle punch) Fiskars, (scallop border punch) Fiskars

Tuesday, November 09, 2010

Joy

Happy Hump Day everyone (or almost Hump Day, depends on when you actually read this)! Hope your week is going well so far!

Thanksgiving is fast approaching and I've finalized my Thanksgiving Menu! :) Every year I pick a somewhat healthy menu and the hubs and I battle it out. He tries to make it more fatty and I try so hard to hold my ground. 

So excited that I managed to hold my ground somewhat this year -- we'll be having a lentil and carrot salad and a butternut squash barley pilaf in lieu of bread stuffing. Some mashed taters and green beans should balance that off nicely (no matter how hard I tried, I couldn't get my hubs to let go of those for something fancier). Oh it's going to be fabulous.

I wanted to do a swiss chard and sweet potato gratin which sounded amazing, but I got talked out of it for a simple sweet potato gratin. While I know my hubs will eat swiss chard, last year, none of the other guests touched the chard - which is fine cos it's more for ME! (I adore swiss chard, actually, I adore my greens in general). However, the "me me me" mentality isn't exactly the spirit of Thanksgiving so I took out the chard (so sad).

Anyways, enough of my food woes. I have another fun card to share with you all. 

This is just another quicky card that I created using Festive Foliage. If you look closely, you'll see that the card front ends with the gold edge. The brown you see peeking through is actually the back of the card. I find these cards just kinda fun. :)

While I made this card for Christmas, it could totally work for other occassions. If you changed the sentiment, you could make this a card for any season - birthdays, thinking of you... the possibilities are endless.

Stamps: (Festive Foliage, sentiment from Vintage Ornaments) Waltzingmouse Stamps
Cardstock: (Gold, Cream, Brown) PTI
Ink: Versamark, (brown) PTI
Embossing Powder: (gold) Ranger
Fibers: (ribbon) PTI

Sunday, November 07, 2010

Waltzingmouse November Release Waltz

Welcome to the Waltzingmouse November Release Design Team Blog Waltz. Make sure to start at Claire's blog to go through the entire waltz! You should have come here from Joan's blog - if you didn't, be sure to make the rounds! There's some fabulous eye candy and prizes to be won!  This month there will be 4 fabulous sets being featured in the waltz (Vintage Ornaments, Festive Foliage, Around Christmastime. and 'Twas the Night Before Christmas)!

Remember you can win a free stamp set by leaving a comment at each blog post along the waltz, including this post! Your comment must be received by 11:59 pm EASTERN on Tuesday, November 9. One winner will be chosen from comments on Claire's blog and one winner will be chosen from comments left on one of the DT member's blogs! So leaving a comment on this blog gives you a chance to win some free goodies and by making the rounds, you can increase your chances!

I'm featuring ''Twas the Night Before Christmas today. I have a LOT of pics so bear with me! :) This is my first time making some home decor hanging but I felt that this was the perfect set to make some Christmas decorations with. So here it is hanging on my wall.

I split each verse into one piece and then tried to illustrate each piece. Each piece is die cut with a Labels 8 Spellbinders die  (I used the second to largest one). And the patterned paper is cut to 4 1/4 by 3 inches. Patterned paper and chipboard pieces are from Crate Paper.

On each image piece, I set an eyelet on the top and the bottom (this gives your cardstock more strength and I'd recommend it). Then I slowly strung the pieces onto the ribbon. I tied a knot at the bottom and tied a bow on the top. 


You can always click on a specific photo for a larger view. I know that you can't see much detail when I show three or four pieces at once so I do have individual shots for your viewing pleasure as well. I took these shots before I hung it up so there may be slight differences as I have a tendency to change my mind at the last minute.

Title page - I love this little image and I thought it'd be perfect for my title page. Added a little gem to the middle of the snowflake.

"Twas the night before Christmas" - I placed some glossy accents onto the light bulbs and it adds some fun texture.

"Sugar plums" - I love the image of the sugar plums dancing so I added some gem swirls for the concept of dancing. The candy has some glossy accents on it as well and I colored the candy cane with my clear Spica glitter pen. I love the shine!

"Tore Open the Shutters" - I created my shutters a little differently than Claire but I think  hers are a little easier to do so you should follow her how-to. There's a fun little orange candle gem for the flame.

"New Fallen Snow" - Added some gems to the snowflake otherwise this is pretty self-explanatory.

"Called Them By Name" - I placed a little red gem on the reindeer nose. The trees are covered with my glossy gel pen for some texture.

"Dash Away, Dash Away All!" - There's some gems and glossy accents on the tree. The Santa image is covered with my glossy gel pen + some glitter from the clear Spica glitter pen. In my overall shots, I realized that the tree chipboard was a little too heavy and was crooked when hung. So to counter it, I did add a small clip to equalize the weight. My engineering degree put to use! The other thing you could do is add some weight to the back.

Ok that wraps up my photo-palooza of a post. Hope you enjoyed and hope you were inspired a bit!

Thanks for stopping by! Next up is the talented Bonnie Sharp - be sure to check out the fabulous things she has in store for you! :)





Stamps: ('Twas the Night Before Christmas) Waltzingmouse Stamps
Cardstock: (Dark Chocolate, Vintage Cream, Simply Chartruese) Papertrey Ink
Patterned Paper: (Snow Day) Crate Paper
Ink: Papertrey Ink, VeraMark
Embossing Powder: (white detail) Ranger
Accents: (chipboard from Snow Day) Crate Paper, (stickers from Snow Day) Crate Paper, (gems) Hero Arts, (gem swirl) Zva, (eyelets)
Coloring Mediums: (gel pen) Sakura, (glitter pen) Copic
Tools: (Glossy Accents) Ranger, Crop-A-Dile, (die) Spellbinders, (2 inch scallop circle punch, 1 3/4 inch circle punch) EK Success

Saturday, November 06, 2010

Waltzingmouse Stamps November Preview - Day 3

Welcome to the third day of the Waltzingmouse Stamps November Release previews! The DT and I will be sharing projects featuring FOUR new stamp sets that will be available for purchase at the Waltzingmouse online store starting Sunday, November 7th. You should have spied a bit of all the sets already! Any favorites so far?

Be sure to check out Claire, Anya, Bonnie, Jennifer, Joan, Julia, Laurie, Lisa, Lynn, Mona, and Sandie who all have fabulous projects to share with you! 

Today I'm going to show you something featuring the new set called Vintage Ornaments. Vintage Ornaments set is full of FIVE unique ornaments & many other images which can be mixed and matched to create a wide variety of embellishments for your projects! Of course these beautiful ornament images can be cut/embossed using the Spellbinders 2010 Heirloom Ornament die template! 

I opted to make a fun card and money holder set. I know some people think money's an impersonal gift but you know what? It's a gift that makes everyone happy. Seriously, when have YOU not been happy to get a little cash in your pocket? If you don't like to give money, you can also put a small gift card in the ornament. If you still don't like cash gifts, don't hate on those of us who do. ;-)

So let's get started... the cash holder is more fun so we'll start with that part. ;-)

Gift Card Holder
I wanted to create a fun keepsake to give money in. This way, the recipient can still use the holder as an ornament. The ornament actually holds the money/check/gift card in the back so you could also hang this on your tree until Christmas.

This idea is adapted from Martha Stewart's gift card holder. If only I had 1/2 her staff... my house would be as clean and organized as could be!


1. Die cut two pieces of felt using the largest ornament die.
2. Cut a horizontal slit in one ornament piece. (It's ok if you forget... I did... not too hard to fix later)
3. Carefully sewed the two pieces together... even I, who cannot sew a straight line managed somehow... granted, the seam ripper was my best friend for about an hour.
4. Stamp and emboss ornament image. Trim and adhere to felt ornament (on the side you DO NOT have a slit cut into)
5. Decorate as you see fit.
6. Most importantly, stuff money/check/gift card into your ornament.

This shot is to show you how I placed the money into my ornament - doesn't it fit so nicely in there? It's as snug as a bug in a rug!


Card


You can't gift a gift card/money/check without a card right? So this is just a quick card using Text It and  a fun image from the new set Around Christmastime. Also a little more glitter never hurt anyone - I covered my entire snowflake image with some fine glitter. (You can always click on any image for a larger view)

Thanks for stopping by! :) 






Stamps: (Vintage Ornaments, Around Christmastime, Text It) Waltzingmouse Stamps
Cardstock: Papertrey Ink
Fibers: (ribbon, felt) PTI
Accents: (glitter) Making Memories, (pins) JBS
Tools: (ornament die) Spellbinders, (1 3/4 inch punch) EK Success

Friday, November 05, 2010

Waltzingmouse Stamps November Preview - Day 2

Welcome to the second day of the Waltzingmouse Stamps November Release previews! The DT and I will be sharing projects over the next several days featuring FOUR new stamp sets that will be available for purchase at the Waltzingmouse online store starting Sunday, November 7th. This is such a fun release -- lots of great all-season sets and even more fun Christmas sets!

Be sure to check out Claire, Anya, Bonnie, Jennifer, Joan, Julia, Laurie, Lisa, Lynn, Mona, and Sandie who all have fabulous projects to share with you!

Today, I'm showcasing some of the fun images from Around Christmastime. There's so many fun images in this set AND they all work with your circle nesties.


I decided to make some treat bags to hold some tasty chocolates. Every year the women in my husband's family exchange gifts and every year I'm at a loss of what to make/get. I figure this year, even if my grand plan of making something homemade fails (ala, I get tired and lazy), at least part of my gift can be handmade. ;-) But it's perfect for your co-workers, your friends, your neighbors, or your classmates! :) Whatever suits your fancy!

I hate making the same thing for so many ladies so here's a few of the ones I've started.  4 down, 4 more to go. ;-)



I love this tag the best I think -- only to be given to nice people on Santa's list. ;-)



With this one, I stamped the glassine bag with the holly leaves from Festive Foliage (also being released November 7th). The tag is coated in glitter - I know a lot of people use the Xyron machine. However, since I do not own one, I just gently tap my tag in my glue pad.


A little non-traditional color wise. My husband said blech to this but I love pink.

And a fun little blue one as well. When using Brilliance ink on glossy cardstock, make sure to be patient before gluing anything (or at least heat set first!)


Hope these little goodies will be appreciated (assuming my husband doesn't eat the candy before Christmas). Thanks for stopping by!





Stamps: (Festive Foliage, Around Christmastime, Nutcracker Sweet) Waltzingmouse Stamps
Cardstock: Papertrey Ink
Ink: (bamboo leaves) Memento from Tsukineko, (blue) Brilliance from Tsukineko, (Spun Sugar, Antique Linen) Ranger, (Pure Poppy) Papertrey Ink
Accents: (ribbon) Assorted, (silver thread), (buttons) Papertrey Ink, (doilies) Wilton
Tools: (dies) Spellbinders, (1 3/4 inch circle punch, 2 inch scallop circle punch) EK Success
Other: (glassine bags)