Wednesday, August 31, 2011

School Days Photo Tray - Stamp of the Month Blog Hop

Welcome to September's Stamp of the Month blog hop!  If you are just starting out, or have arrived here from Annette's Creative Journey, you are in the right place.  When you're done here, you can hop along to Paper Creations by Wendy and see what she has made for us this month.  Just don't forget to read all the way to the bottom of my post today for a great giveaway!

This month's featured stamp set is Limited Edition, an awesome set of 21 stamps with an office-type feel and tons of possibilities!  With back-to-school upon us, I decided to make photo trays of my three kids' school pictures over the years.  I chose one with 12 spots, perfect for Preschool through 8th grade with one or two left over for decorating.  Two of my three went to 2 years of church preschool, so I am working with one spot left over (I added a birthday shot of my oldest here so they all look similar in the end.)

Only four more years to go!

~To see how I made the frame on the front, make sure you check out my video below!~

I used the Typeset paper pack and Complements, so I used matching ink colors for my stamps.  First, I cut the tag using the Art Philosophy Cricut cartridge at the size indicated on the stamp set carrier sheet.  Then I stamped the tag image in Vineyard Berry, the hand in Juniper, and the phrase in Black.  I added black ribbon through the hole in the tag, and popped up my canvas Complement sticker on foam adhesive tape.  (Remember to powder the back of stickers after applying the adhesive foam to eliminate the adhesive on the rest of the sticker.)

I added additional Complements and stamped phrases and images to enhance the smaller photos.

If you'd like to know how to make the decorative frame front, here's a video you can watch:
All products, except the photo tray, are from Close To My Heart.  You can shop for any of them at the following links (links will open my website in a new window so you can continue the hop):
The photo tray is from 7Gypsies.
     Now, for some blog candy!  I thought we could all use a prize to celebrate the new Cricut cartridge from Close To My Heart.  So, I am giving away a Cricut Tool Kit!!  MSRP on this is $24.99, so it would be great not to have to buy one, LOL.  In order to win, there are just a few simple rules: 1)US residents only please. 2)You must be a follower or subscriber of Saving My... and 3)Leave a comment.  That's it!  I will leave the contest open over the long weekend, so you have until 11:59PM Central Time on Monday, September 5 to enter.  I will announce and try to contact the winner on Tuesday.  You have 24 hours to respond or I will select a new winner.

    Thanks for stopping by.  Hope to see you again soon!  Don't forget to hop along now over to Paper Creations by Wendy - I'm sure she has an awesome project for us!

    Graphic 45 Wedding Layout

    Just a quick post to share a LO I made at the last minute for a Graphic 45 contest that ends today.

    The colors are a little washed out in the picture - in person they're beautiful pastel peachy-pink and greenish-blue, on a light neutral background.  The metal flower layers from G45 are super easy to manipulate with needle-nose pliers and I love the dimension they give!  This layout will be going in a shadowbox frame, since those flowers are too thick for my album.

    I started with a sketch from PageMaps, simply rotating it.  In addition to the flowers, I also added machine stitching around all of the squares for a quilt-like feel, and across the strip. My title is cut with my Cricut and the Nursery Rhymes cartridge.  The cardstock is from Close To My Heart.

    Monday, August 29, 2011

    Michael's Open House

    I am now a scrapbooking and paper crafting instructor at Michael's in Tinley Park, Illinois. If you happen to live in the Chicago area, this is a great store, conveniently located right off I-80 at Harlem Avenue (Rte 43).  The actual address is 7310 191st Street in Tinley Park if you want to Google Map it!

    Anyway, I am starting to offer classes at the store in September.  If you come in during our Open House on Saturday September 10, 1-3PM, there will be a special offer I can't share yet!

    If you have a group of at least 4 people, we can schedule any class you'd like at a time that's convenient for your group.  I am hoping to have classes for October scheduled  by the 10th as well, so you can receive the discount on those classes too!  Here are the classes I have scheduled for September:

    Spotted Canary School:
    Learn to scrapbook, or improve your game, with four 2-hour classes.  You will learn Scrapbook Basics, The Building Blocks of Design, The Power of the Pen, and The Final Touch.
    Thursdays 10AM - 12PM, September 8, 15, 22, 29                  $24 plus supplies (no further discounts apply)

    Sketched Out:

    Sneak Peek of my sample LO
    Don’t let your scrapbook hobby stress you out!  Make it easier with a sketch.  Spend your time choosing your beautiful supplies, not struggling with designs.  In this class, you will learn to use a sketch when creating a scrapbook layout, then repeat elements from the sketch to make two cards.  Just measure, cut, and adhere! 
    Sunday September 11, 2PM-4PM        $25 plus supplies 

    Texture WOW!:

    Sneak peek of my canvas!

    If you’re ready to take your skills up a notch and you’re not afraid to get a little dirty, this is the class for you!  Create a unique art piece for display while we apply eight different techniques for adding texture to your paper projects.  Who says paper has to be flat? 
    Sunday September 18, 2PM - 4PM      $25 plus supplies

    Cricut Workshop - Winter Frolic:
    My friend Mandie's canvas sample!
    Make three super cute Christmas gift items while you learn the many functions of your Cricut machine!  Make more at home for loads of economical gifts.  Use the ideas with different cartridges for other special occasions as well.
    Wednesday September 21, 12:30PM - 2:30PM     $25 plus supplies
    If you think you might be interested in this class, I will also be conducting a demo on Wednesday September 14, 1PM - 2PM where you can see a little more detail!

    I'll be creating a separate schedule page for my Michael's classes, so you can stay updated on new offerings.  Be sure to check back for new classes, and be sure to let me know if there's a day/time that works better for you and what class(es) you're interested in.

    Sunday, August 28, 2011

    Uncommon Layout with Authentique, Sketch Support, and Close To My Heart Cricut Cartridge

    My 8-year-old daughter Holly is a very unique girl.  Being the middle child, she gets in a lot less trouble than her older sister and younger brother.  But she is by no means a wall flower.  She dresses in crazy outfits, dances and jumps around the room, sings at the top of her lungs (regardless of her sister's opinion of her singing), is a champion litter box scooper, and a frequent hugger.  I came across these pictures that I think her 6-year-old brother took, because I sure don't remember doing it, and I just had to document her unique style & personality.

    Be sure to click on the picture to see it in better detail!
    I started with a sketch from Sketch Support and papers from the Uncommon line by Authentique.  The script font in the title is from Gypsy Font.  The scrolls, rolled roses, and rest of the title are all from the Art Philosophy Cricut cartridge from Close To My Heart.  The pink letters in the title were edged using a black marker to better define the edges.  The pom-pom ribbon is also from Close To My Heart, as are all of the stamping inks (and sponge daubers) that I used to sponge the edges of all of my papers, and the tools I used to create the roses.  Cardstocks are all from Bazzill, the leaves are from my stash, and the sparkly gems are all I-rock gems from Imaginisce.   

    Quick tip: I used the cuts on the Art Philosophy font as marks to tell me where to adhere the I-rock gems.  In this small 1" size, the cuts themselves are pretty tiny, but I liked the design element.  Also, I used Scor Tape to adhere the lumpy bumpy ribbon, and dimensional Glue Dots to adhere the roses so I could angle them better.

    If you'd like to see details on how to make the rolled roses, here's a video you can check out.

    Thanks for stopping by today!  I would love to know what you think of my layout and/or video.  I would of course also love to have you as my follower or subscriber if you're so inclined.  Hope to see you back here again soon!

    Friday, August 26, 2011

    Upcycle with Echo Park Paper

    Wow, seems like forever since I've posted a project here!  I have been busy, but can't share everything right now.  I do have a fun and easy upcycle project for you today, though.

    So, you know those little 4-packs of single serve wine bottles?  I decided to turn one into a mini charging station for my kitchen island, just for my phone and camera.  I can leave the cords right in it and pop the whole thing into the cupboard if I need it out of sight, but it looks pretty when it sits out.  Here's what I did:

    (Pardon the mess behind it - school has started an this is where the lunchboxes reside!)  So, using the For The Record collection from Echo Park Paper, I just cut strips of the floral paper to fit around the box.  I then cut pieces to size for the top, traced through the handle on the back side, and cut it out.  I used my Crop-a-dile Big Bite to punch the holes, then enlarged them with the lid of my Flower Soft Glue bottle!  I enjoy puns, so I used the phrase from the collection that says "It's down to the wire", and added typewriter key letters "D" and "C" (direct current, get it?).  Yes, I know, I AM a dork!  I topped all of the stickers with Liquid Glass for dimension and to protect them a little.

    Here's the view of the inside.  I cut out the divider on one side so my camera would fit better.  OK, that's it for today, folks!  I promise I'll be back soon with some more projects, as well as some sneak peeks of some classes I will be teaching at Michael's during September.  Thanks for stopping by, and hope to see you back again soon!

    Friday, August 19, 2011

    WINNER Post

    Just dropping in with a quick Winner post!  Sorry it's taken so long (I was sick all weekend & been playing catchup all week).  So, without further ado, the winner of the two titles from Northridge Publishing is...

    Babe O'Mara - congratulations!

    I'm off to email her now... better luck next time to everyone else.

    Sunday, August 14, 2011

    Pair-A-Phrase Blog Hop

    Hello and welcome to our special Pair-A-Phrase blog hop!  In case you didn't know, Close To My Heart is offering an awesome special for National Stamping Month, and that's what we're featuring.  If you're just starting out, or are arriving here from Mary Eisen's blog, you're in the right place.  When you're done here, you'll move along to Laura Petruso's blog and see what she has made for us.

    "TO CELEBRATE NATIONAL STAMPING MONTH IN September, we are offering our first-ever double stamp set! You can get the exclusive My Acrylix® Pair-a-Phrase double stamp set FREE when you place an order of $75 from August 15 through September 30, 2011. You’ll love this double set—two D-size sets in one envelope—which includes lots of clever phrases and coordinating images you’ll use in your handmade cards all year. And with a retail value of $35.90, this set drastically increases the value of your qualifying purchase! Have double the fun stamping during National Stamping Month with our new Pair-a-Phrase double stamp set!"

    There are lots of possibilities with this fun set, and I chose to make some favors for Thanksgiving using the stamp set with the Art Philosophy Cricut cartridge.

    I heat embossed the silverware with silver embossing powder on a round tag cut at 2" from Art Philosophy, then colored them in with a Grey Wool marker.  I curved the sentiment stamp on the block to follow the curve of the circle, and stamped it in Olive.

    I cut the take out box from a Mayberry paper at Fit to Page size, and two lengths of the border at 3/4".  My Gypsy is currently down & almost out, or I would have welded them into a single piece.  I added Cocoa ribbon through the tag and along the center of the border and adhered everything down.  Finally, to make it look a little more authentic, I pierced holed in either side of the box and added a craft wire handle.

    As a quick reminder, through the end of August, you also get an additional stamp set, A Typeface, free once you make a $50 purchase PLUS order the stamp of the month for $5.  This means you can get both free stamp sets at once if you meet the requirements of both offers, an even better deal!

    Now, if you're ready, you can hop along to Laura's blog.  If you don't currently have a consultant, I would love it if you would visit my website and take a look at all of the fabulous products available!

    Thursday, August 11, 2011

    Cards with Echo Park Paper - and a Giveaway!

    If you're new here and visiting from Cutters Creek, welcome! I'd love it if you'd take a look around at some of my other projects while you're here.

    I have been extremely lucky, and got my hands on both the 12x12 and 6x6 Country Drive from Echo Park Paper.  I immediately had a project in mind, and used some product to make three thank you cards for some very special people!

    All three 6x6 cards were made with papers from the 6x6 pad, some embellishments from the 12x12 collection and a few items from my stash.  You can see the details and supplies used over on the Cutters Creek Blog today.

    I also have a giveaway for you today!  While at CHA, the nice folks over at Northridge Publishing let us have complimentary copies of some of their beautiful publications.  Kim at Cutters Creek will be carrying several titles, so to celebrate I am giving away BOTH the August issue of Scrapbook Trends (Kim has September available for preorder) AND a copy of Cricut Cards (which Kim also has available for preorder).  In order to win, you need to leave a comment both here and on today's post over at the Cutters Creek blog.  All comments posted by Midnight Central Time this Friday August 12, will be eligible to win.  US and Canada entries only please!  Of course, we would love it if you would also follow or subscribe to both blogs as well!

    Wednesday, August 10, 2011

    Looking Forward to Halloween with Our Craft Lounge stamps

    For some reason, I have Halloween on the brain lately.  I do love Halloween, but even I have to admit this is getting a bit ridiculous!  I have to promise myself that this is the last Halloween project for a while - after all, school starts in less than two weeks so there are plenty of related projects there I should probably be doing...

    At any rate, I just couldn't resist making a fun card with some Our Craft Lounge stamps.  The Spooky Tags set would be great for simple tags on  treat bags or homemade items (have to let the neighbors know where they came from or they'll just throw them out!).  But they also make some great scrapbook embellishments and cards - here's what I made this time:

    I based my color palette on an eery sunset.  Using glossy white cardstock, I brayered on ink, moving from bottom to top of my panel.  Beginning with Sunset, followed by Spring Iris, ending with Outdoor Denim.  Next, I stamped the image, then the sentiment, over the brayered background using black Staz-on ink.

    Digging through my stash of Halloween papers, I found the perfect pattern/color combination in this Heidi Grace paper.  (Not long ago, I saw they still carry some of this paper at Joann's.)  I added some machine stitching using black upholstery thread, then topped the card with some cardstock panels and popped up my image panel on some foam adhesive tape.  Finally, I colored some clear Sparkles with a black alcohol marker and added them in a swirl design.

    I left the inside simple, with a cardstock liner and a stamped sentiment from the same stamp set.  All supplies other than the stamps, marker and pattern paper are from Close To My Heart.

    Overall dimensions of this card are 8" x 3.5", perfect for gifting a couple of dollars to a special little someone too far away for Trick-or-Treat.  Or maybe a school store gift certificate for a favorite teacher to replenish a few supplies.

    Thanks for stopping by!  I'd love to see/hear what you like to make for Halloween, or whatever your favorite holiday is!

    Monday, August 8, 2011

    Halloween Decor with Authentique, Close To My Heart, Cricut, and Tim Holtz

    While visiting CHA this year, I saw a paper company whose papers I had not seen in person before and I went a little ga-ga.  Authentique Paper's 12x12 papers are heavy weight, printed on both sides of a nicely textured cardstock.  For this project, due to the size, I chose to use the smaller 6x6 papers with their reduced patterns.  These papers are a 65 lb. weight, making them great for layering.  They also carry sticker and cardstock elements, which I don't have on hand, so I just used the papers.

    As soon as I saw these 6x6 papers from the Glowing collection, I knew what I wanted to do with them.  Of course, it has taken me until now to finish it, but I absolutely love it!  I ran out and bought a Tim Holtz Configurations box and a package of Box Feet as the base for my project.  The knob is also Tim Holtz, from part of a package I had on hand.

    Here are the details of all those little boxes:
     This was a really easy one!  I just trimmed the paper to size, traced the web with Black Diamond Stickles, and filled in the spider's body with Liquid Glass.  I adhered the dried piece to a cardstock platform to lift it away from the back of the box.

    Here's another easy one.  I stamped the cat with Black Staz-On ink and added some Lime Green Stickles to its eyes.  I also placed this one on an even higher cardstcok platform, bringing it almost to the front of the box.

    For this box, I used the new Art Philosophy Cricut cartridge (exclusive from Close To My Heart).  I cut a couple of branches from New England Ivy cardstock and distressed it with black distressing ink.  They are adhered and various points using Liquid Glass adhesive.  The flowers are also from this Cricut cartridge, using the scalloped flower cut on page 68 of the handbook.  I cut them at various sizes, from 1.25" to 2.75", distressed them with the distress ink and rolled them.  I added Black Diamond Stickles to the edges of some of the petals.

    This one was done the same way.  For both boxes, I used Liquid Glass to adhere the flowers so they could be manipulated and moved into the desired position.

    For this box, I stamped the witch hat directly on the patterned paper using Staz-On ink (I did this for the super dark color.), and I stamped the sentiment on the clear window sheet that goes in the "lid" of the Configurations box.

    These two boxes go together.  The witch legs were stamped on white cardstock using Memento ink and colored using a Copic marker for the skin, and an Autumn Terracotta marker (CTMH) for the stockings.  I cut out the image and adhered it to the pattern paper using a Quickie Glue Pen.  I cut the plaque image using Art Philosophy, and trimmed the top of it straight with my paper trimmer.  After stamping the sentiment, I distressed the edges with Autumn Terracotta ink, and adhered it to the pattern paper with two layers of foam tape.

    Another easy one, where I just traced the pattern on the paper with Black Diamond Stickles.

    I cut both the tree and the "fence" from Art Philosophy.  I adhered the center of the tree only to the pattern paper using a Quickie Glue Pen, and bent up the remaining branches to give some dimension.  I trimmed the "fence" border cut to the proper length, scored folds for the side pieces, and adhered it to the sides of the box using a Quickie Glue Pen.

    Here's a list of all the supplies I used:

    Friday, August 5, 2011

    Easy Signs with Cricut and Markers

    So, we recently had a garage sale at our house.  In an effort to spare people from trying to decipher my handwriting, I decided to make up some signs for various things using my Cricut and a black Cricut marker.

    Saving myself from tagging 30 or so oddly shaped items...
    Attempting to keep breakables unbroken!

    We had a couple more, but you get the idea.  Look pretty good, huh?  Considerably better than my chicken scratches!  Here's the skinny  on making these easy signs.  I used plain 11x14 posterboard that comes in a 5-pack at the drug store, along with my 12x24 mat. 

    You're going to want to use a Gypsy (or Design Studio, or Cricut Craft Room) so that you can get things reasonably centered and make sure they will fit in your space.  The key to  making signs like this is to be sure and pick a font that is easily readable in outline form.  I chose to use Mickey Font, but there are plenty of other good choices.  I have used one of the styles from Hello Kitty Font with good results as well.  I would also suggest keeping your letters at least 2 inches tall for good readability.

    Once you're all set, switch your blade to a black marker, load your mat, and "cut".  Unload the mat, peel off your poster and you're all ready to go!  You can bet I'll be using this again soon - our PTO Home Shopping Expo will be coming up before I know it...
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