Friday, November 30, 2012

A Year Full Of Cards - December SOTM Blog Hop

Hello, and welcome to the December Stamp Of the Month blog hop!  If you have arrived here from Teresa Scrivens' blog, or if you are just starting out, you are in the right place!  When you are done here, you'll hop along to Carla Ironside's blog and see what she has to share with us.

This month's stamp set is Year Round Cheer, a fun set of 12 stamps perfect for every month of the year!  I chose to cut each of my stamps into two stamps, so I can easily stamp the image portion in one color/location, and the sentiment portion in another color/location.  I enjoyed these stamps so much, I couldn't make just one project; I made TWELVE!

Since making twelve cards delayed me a bit (and I have to leave for work in a few minutes), I'm just going to show you the pictures and I'll add the full details later tonight.  Stop back by if you want to know exactly what I used for a certain card.  I would like to point out that each card uses a different stamp from the set AND a different sketch pattern from Make It from Your Heart Volume 1, an awesome book full of patterns and ideas for both scrapbooks and cards.

Now, here they are:

I think a set of cards like this would make a great last-minute gift, and you can probably make most of them with scraps and a package of our cards & envelopes!  Now, don't forget to head over to Carla Ironside's blog!

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Down On the Farm Card

I know, everyone seems to be Christmas crafting lately.  But life goes on, and I needed a break from Christmas anyway!  I grew up on a farm, and I am still a country girl at heart even though I married a suburbanite and my own kids would have no idea how to deal with the chickens (not that I enjoyed that job much, myself).  I love this Country Girl stamp by Sarah Kay, so I felt the need to color her for my latest project for Cutters Creek.

I matched her up to some great papers from the Miss Caroline Dilly Dally 6"x6" paper pad from My Mind's Eye.  The frame is cut with my Cricut using the Fancy Frames cartridge.  I added a felt ribbon, paper flowers, buttons, & a brad from my stash to complete my card. I sure hope my recipient likes it!

She was a lot of fun to color with my Copic markers.  Here is a list of the colors I used:
  • R29, R39
  • Y11, Y13, Y15, Y21
  • YR000
  • BG11, BG15, BG18
  • B000
  • E00, E02, E11, E13, E15, E37
  • C1
  • W1, W3, W5
These items are all available at Cutters Creek:
Thanks for stopping by today!  I hope you enjoyed this project.

Monday, November 26, 2012

Complete! Advent Calendar Success

As I suspected, once I finally got the wood base assembled for this Kaisercraft advent calendar, it turned out beautifully!  And I hope the wood construction means that it will last for years.

I left my base plain as it came since it matched my papers, but you could easily paint it. The drawers are large enough to hold a small treat for each of my (three) kids, and I plan to put slips of paper inside some with an activity for that day (great for weekends!).

Because the joinery shows when assembled, I covered the top and sides.  I chose an allover small print because it's larger than 12" and needs to be pieced.  I used a zip strip from one of my papers along the center of the top, but it would look fine plain also.

I chose to cover the front and sides of each box with a variety of the papers & cardstocks in the Pear & Partidge paper pack.  I distressed all of the edges using the distressing tool that looks a bit like an emery board.  I also inked and gold embossed all of the edges & corners of the base boxes for bling.

I decorated the box fronts with an assortment of embellishments and the November stamp of the month set, Capture The Date.  I like that is has several sizes/styles of numbers so I could use different ones depending on how much room I had. (Sorry, the red velvet rub-ons I used are no longer available, except as part of Hostess Collection 4, while supplies last.)

This box is the easiest possible! I just used one of the Dimensional Elements In Color and stamped a "3" on it. Super quick!

This one uses a couple of rub-ons for the leaves; all of the other items are from the Antiqued Gold Mini-Medley Accents Collection.

This is another from the Pear & Partridge Glittery Rub-Ons.  I added a little extra glitter with some Pink Glitz glitter gel on the berries. These are super easy to put on using the Rub-On Tool.

This is another of the Dimensional Elements In Color.  I punched a hole in the top of the ornament and added some twine for a hanger.  I adhered the twine to the inside of the box using some Liquid Glass.

Finally, this set of three uses one larger rub-on. They can easily be cut apart and applied across multiple items.  Or, the rub-ons can also be layered on top of each other for dimension, like a bird overlapping part of a snowflake.

I hope you enjoyed this fun project! I would love to hear your comments on it. If you're inspired to make one of your own, here is a list of products I used:

* All starred items are available as part of Hostess Collection 4

Saturday, November 24, 2012

Advent Calendar and Shop Small Specials

Today I wanted to share a sneak peek of an Advent Calendar I've been working on, and I also realized I didn't post my Small Business Saturday specials here yet.  First, a quick rundown of my specials:
  • Any order placed this month will receive a free gift from me, a fun & versatile embellishment kit.
  • Shop online and join my Shop Small gathering - any order of at least $35 will receive from me a free Monogram stamp of your choice.
  • Any order placed for Small Business Saturday will be entered into a drawing for another surprise free gift. (Extended through MONDAY since I forgot to post earlier!)
Now, on to the Advent Calendar, and a bit of a product review.  This is my drawer for December 1.
(I think I need some kind of template for making those swirls, lol.  I never like how mine turn out!)

I received my Kaisercraft Mini Treasure Chest quite some time ago, but I am just now getting around to using it.  I must say that  if I had known that CTMH would be coming out with the MyCreations Cubby this catalog, I would have waited. I have had a lot of trouble assembling the Kaisercraft chest and getting it to stay together - I think I am going to have to ask hubby for the wood glue and clamps as nothing else stays put for long.  Also, since the drawers are bare chipboard, they require a lot of "finishing".  I know when it is finished it will look nice and hopefully be used for many years, but it has been a hassle for something so pricey ($29.99).

I have not ordered the CTMH MyCreations Cubby myself yet, but at $16.95 I will try it soon. (I think it will make a neat "25 things I love about you" display.)  This one includes only the base, and the boxes are cut using the Artiste Cricut cartridge.  If I leave the base blank, I could even make different themed boxes and switch them out...

I will be posting the entire Advent Calendar as I get it finished up.  So far, I have used the Pear & Partridge paper pack and rubons, a sanding kit, Almond Glitz glitter gel, and the November stamp of the month Capture the Date.

Thursday, November 15, 2012

A Christmas House - Creations by AR Blog Hop

Hello and welcome to the Home For the Holidays new release blog hop with the Creations by AR Design Team!  If this is your first time joining us, here are the details:

How to Win: One random comment from each group listed below will be chosen to receive the new template. The more you comment, the greater your chances! (Ends Sunday at midnight EST)

Visit and comment at each blog - one winner chosen from the AR Team

One winner chosen from a comment on the AR Facebook Page.

The third winner will be chosen from the comments left on PCP.
 The new template for this release is this cute House Box and Ornament.  It can also be an ornament just by stringing the whole house on a string or ribbon.  Here's my sweet & simple version:

And here it is again in better lighting:
I added the window frames to mine, but otherwise kept it simple. I used some coordinated products from Close To My Heart: Pear & Partridge paper pack & rubons, twine, and Glitz glitter gel. I also used Liquid Glass for my adhesive - it can be moved a bit then dries quickly and has a strong hold.

I love that this can be used as both an ornament and a gift box.  And they are simple enough to make that you can create a whole tree full in a short time! Now, be sure to visit the other DT members' blogs and check out their versions.

Monday, November 5, 2012

Twice the Gifts In Half the Time!

Do you love to share your photos with family at the holidays?  Do you struggle with the amount of time it takes to make gifts with those photos?  If so, then Studio J could be the answer! 

For my day-to-day scrapbooking, I am a hands-on kind of girl; digital is not really my thing.  However, after trying out the new Express Collections, I know that these are perfect for holiday gifts!  Need duplicate albums for grandparents, siblings, etc.?  Do the work just once and have multiple prints made!  And the Express Collections make it faster than ever before (which was a big hurdle to digital for me).  Choose the entire Collection of 11 2-page layouts (including intro and end pages) for a theme album, or choose just the layouts you want.  There's even a great "Year in Review" collection, which I think would be great for grandparent gifts!

Oh, and did I mention that the software is completely free? You have to create an account before you start, but there is no obligation - you don't pay for anything unless you decide to purchase your project.  Let me show you the 5 layouts I recently completed. (I think it took me about 3.5 hours for all 5; not bad for my first time!)

This layout is direct from the School Days collection.  I just dropped in my photos, addte "first day of" to the title, and added my journaling details.  It was super fast, and it was easy to crop my pictures in place.

This layout is from the Year in Review collection.  I dropped in my photos, changed the duplicates to black & white, added my journaling details, and changed the "this year in" to "first day of" in the title.  I love that even though I had fewer pictures than the layout called for, it's easy to use it anyway.  The filmstrip-style row of pictures gave me the idea to duplicate a single picture on each side and only leave the one on the end in color.  The software makes it easy to switch to black & white by just clicking a box.

This one started with a Custom Layout.  That means that I first chose the paper pack I wanted to use, then found the layout pattern.  This is the Avonlea paper pack and the Backstage pattern.  This particular layout was for a class for the CTMH Regional Celebration that I attended, so they had specific directions for us to follow for many of the steps.   You can change the color and/or intensity of any paper in the layout, add embellishments, change colors of things like fonts and buttons, and more.  Feel free to play around and change anything and everything. You can always undo anything you don't like.

This layout began with the True Friend paper pack and the Honeycomb pattern.  What do I love?  This is one of many paper pack available only on Studio J, including many of those paper packs that used to be available in "real" paper that have been discontinued.  I also love the trendy hexagon shapes on this pattern - lots of fun, and you pick the exact paper patterns you want to use!

Finally, this layout uses the Class Act paper pack and the Glimpses pattern.  I based my colors and patterns on my daughter's clothes (and her favorite color).  So I used the Kit Mix 3 and change the multicolor numbers paper to Twilight and the white background to Twilight.  I added heavy black distressing to define the edges and add interest.  I also changed colors on the embellishments.

I love how fast these all were to make - I really think it would have taken me a lot less time except that I just couldn't resist playing around with everything to see what the different changes would do!

I invite you to go create an account and try out Studio J - I think you'll be hooked too!

Thursday, November 1, 2012

Pun'kin Card Set - Creations by AR Blog Hop

Hello and welcome to the Creations by AR new release blog hop for November 1!  Today's release includes the super-cute Pun'kin Card and Party Set.  You can win your very own PUN'KIN CARD and PARTY SET just by hopping along!

Leave comments on all blogs and finish at:
PCP AR Group
AR FaceBook

AR Group on PCP
AR FaceBook

Adela Rossol:
Amy Park:
Julia Aston:
Lisa Somerville:
Lori Brown: ********YOU ARE HERE!!*********
Lyn Bernatovich:
Patti J. Gilliam:
Sue Kment:

Now, I can't wait to see what everyone did with these cute files, so let's get started!  Here's my complete set:

First up is the card.  Here is the outside:

And here is the inside:
 The smaller pumpkin shape cuts that I used on the inside can also be used on the outside (front) if you wish.  I chose to leave my outside looking "pumpkin-y", and used the smaller cuts to cover most of the floral side of the paper on the inside.  The green pattern was perfect for my sentiment, and the lighter neutral will be easy to write on.

I love that it stands, tent-style, to show off our beautiful work to all who pass by!

Next is the place card:

I used chalkboard vinyl for my name area - or you could use it to label foods on a buffet if, like my family, you're more casual in your seating.

Finally, the favor box:

From the front, this looks a lot like the place card. It's the same size and they use the same base. You could even add the smaller layered cut shape to this one as well; I chose to stamp an image directly on my pattern paper instead.  Here's what's different:

Where the place card stands tent-style like the card, the favor box has sides attached to the flat bottom.  Plenty of room for a little mix of candy corn and dry roasted peanuts, yum!  I'm already thinking about making an enlarged version of this so I can tuck in a few treats for the "little bitties" that we'll have at our family celebration.

I hope you enjoyed my take on this great set of files!  If you're interested, all of the products I used are available from Close To My Heart:
Don't forget to leave a comment before you hop along in order to be entered to win the prize!
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