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Monday, November 28, 2011

PTI MIM #42

So I finally do a Papertrey Ink Make It Monday, and then I realize that I probably did it slightly wrong. I watched the video on Monday but didn't make the card until Thursday or Friday. I was already thinking of doing this card when I saw the video so I got really excited when I saw it! So, I made the background with the sentiment stamps, but I didn't layer them...at least not on purpose. There was a bit of overlap here and there but I like how it turned out. I used a Spellbinders Nestibilities die to cut the bottom edge of the strip I stamped.

Stamp: PTI Mazel Tov

Paper: PTI rustic white (base), DCWV shimmer stack (blue layer & focal), Staples 110 lb card stock (white layer)

Ink: ColorBox (not sure what color but it's from one of those strips with lots of colors), Martha Stewart silver

Other: silver cord (stash), Stampendous clear embossing powder

Monday, November 21, 2011

Ornament!

Once again, I didn't get around to doing the Papertrey Ink Make It Monday (maybe next week?). I am super excited about the project I did tonight though. Not only is this my first attempt at an ornament. It's the first time I saw something in the store, looked at it and thought, " I know exactly what I could do with this" and then came home and did it. I also really like it because there was a bit of beading involved. I haven't beaded since last year, around this time (when I learned how to bead), so I'm pretty pleased with what I accomplished. This little penguin is going to a friend, and I hope they really enjoy it. Thanks for stopping by!

From my happy place to yours,
Debbie

Monday, October 3, 2011

zebra matchbox birthday note

Here with another card that should have been pretty quick but took longer than it should have because I didn't know what I wanted to do. Next time it will be super fast since I know what I'm doing. :) I made this one entirely from scraps (love challenging myself like that).

I started with a 2.75 x 9 strip of brown for my base. I scored it at 1" and again at 5" (creating two 4" sections and one 1" section). You can do this with any length of paper. Just score at 1" (or whatever length you want your flap) and then score again at halfway of whatever is left. I glued a white insert into the card to write on. Then I glued the sides of the 1" flap down and added a brad. The brad shows through the back, I just glued a coordinating strip or blue on the back to cover it up.

In order for the top 4" flap to go into the bottom flap, I trimmed the corners from the 4" flap.

Before gluing everything down, I glued the blue strip on the main base and on the flap. I didn't measure. I just glued it down, cut at the edge and then repeated on the flap. Then I stamped the sentiment (Papertrey Ink) and created dots with my VersaMark pen. It was my first time using the pen (even though I've had it for a few months)...totally worth it. Get one.

The flower is a Fiskers punch. I had a bunch of these punched from a previous project but never used them. The zebra was cut from the gypsy, but I don't remember the size and I didn't save the file. (I really need to get better at that.) If you have a gypsy though, use one layer to create a visual template the size of your card. Then use a second layer to size your cut to fit the way you want on the card. Since you're working with layers, make sure all the layers are grouped when you're sizing so you know they will fit together properly. The zebra is attached with dimensional foam adhesive so it could easily overlap the bottom flap and still close.

The only other thing I did was color the black portion with a black glitter gel pen to add a little shine. You can't see it well I'm the pictures, but you can see it in person. It's very subtle. Another thing I tried that had a nice effect was cutting the white layer from photo paper. I like the gloss effect. You should try it. Just be careful handling it when working with ink, but that's good advice for any white paper. I'm a messy crafter so there are some ink smudges. No worries though. That's part of the handmade charm. ;)

Give it a try and challenge yourself to do an entire project with scraps. I always feel more accomplishment and pride with my scrap projects than I do with my other ones because they are more challenging.

from my happy place to yours,
Debbie

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Birthday seahorse

I just had to post this cute little seahorse card I made. Here's what I love about it...
1. I made it entirely from scraps (including the card base)
2. It has a seahorse on it...and it's purple!
3. I got to try a new technique (crackle embossing) that I've wanted to try for a while now.

The card is about 3.5 x 5.5 (a strip left over from a 5.5 x 5.5 card I made for something else). I'll let you in on a secret, when I'm testing inks and embossing power, I'll test on the strip that's left over from when I cut my card base. The base of this card was the left over strip so there are all kinds of stamping and embossing samples under that blue paper! I'll try to remember to take a picture next time. 

The blue strip runs from the front to the back of the card. I adhered it to the base and then scored both to make the folding easier. Then I trimmed the edge with a scallop paper trimmer (not an edge punch). The paper has a big floral print, I thought with the white lines of the flower and the variation of the blue, it looked pretty ocean-y. 

Finally, the seahorse was cut using my gypsy and the Doodlecharms cartridge. I cut the base and the layer to fit the card (I made a rectangle the size of my card so I could size the seahorse to fit). Both were cut in the same purple paper. Then I embossed the layer with Versamark (just press the entire piece into the stamp pad or vice versa) and extra thick embossing powder/crystals 3 times. After the third time, I bent the paper in different directions to get the crackle effect. Depending on how this turns out, I sometimes apply a thin coat of glossy accents. That does two things, (1) seals the crackle so little bits don't fall off and (2) makes is glossy. To top it off, I used a thin layer of glossy accents on the bottom layer so it didn't look too boring against the cracked layer. (It was also really thin paper so it didn't look so great without a little extra touch.)

The sentiment is from Papertrey Ink's very first stamp set, Papertey. I cut the circle from the Cricut as well (probably Alphalicious, but there are tons of circles on many cartridges) and tied it with some thin rope I picked up from a floral design center. 

Hope you enjoy this "under the seahorse" card!

Friday, July 29, 2011

motivation & time saving

this is my first video post, but i didn't shoot it. my sister and i were talking (texting) tonight. i was telling her how i don't feel motivated lately to make anything. because we have our own business, it sometimes just feels like one more thing i have to do. she shot and sent me this quick video that some of you may find helpful. it's a pretty simple idea, but I hadn't really thought of it before. when she doesn't feel like committing to a whole project, she just stamps and stores extra sentiments. it's kind of a nice way to do something small and productive without making a huge commitment...and have some fun with your stamps! i do mostly paper crafts, but i bet this can work for all crafters. if you sew, maybe do some cutting. if you knit or crochet, make some sample blocks to measure the gauge for a future project. if you paint, prep a canvas or play around with mixing some new colors. at least you'll feel like you got a little something done.

ps - i <3 my sister. she's pretty awesome.

video


from my happy place to yours,
debbie

Saturday, July 16, 2011

Papertrey Ink July 2011 Release

Once again, Papertrey Ink has released beautiful stamps. I've never really followed Nichole Heady's blog, but I may have to start. I usually just check out the Make it Monday (still haven't made anything for that, but one day!) and check out what others have made for MIM. However, right before they release new stamps on the 15th of every month (I can't even imagine how much work that is), she and her design team (DT) make projects to reveal and show you ideas for the upcoming stamps. Her DT is phenomenal! They really show you what you can do with the stamps, and they make me want to get them. Come to think of it, maybe I shouldn't follow the blog. ;)

I don't know what her policies are, so I'm not going to post pictures here, but I will post some links to the new stamps and some of my favorite projects from the DT so you can check out their sites and blogs. Everyone wants a little traffic thrown their way, right?

July 2011 release can be found on the Papertrey Ink homepage.

At first glance, Tranquility Trinity is not my favorite. I usually prefer circles over triangles, but check out these great projects!

  • Erin Lincoln does a take on the fun of baby gender reveals. Also, her blog title, Procrastination Station, was the nickname of my college ResHall [dorm] room for the first two years of school, so I knew I would like her right away.
  • Check out these cute little straw flags Jessica Witty put together for a kids party! The card on her page was also very nice. I own a sewing machine, but I haven't learned how to use it yet. Maybe one day I can create something like that.
  • Maile Belles may be my absolute favorite! She combines layers of embossed images over stamped images for a very elegant finish!
I'm not going to post about the other stamps and their projects because there are so many, but you should definitely check them out at www.papertreyink.com. Be sure to take a closer look at:
  • Hanging Out stamp set. If you even know someone who knows someone that might be having a baby, you have enough cause to buy this insanely cute set! Once you see what Melissa Bickford did with this it, you'll know you must have it.
  • I really like the projects the designers did with the Peaceful Garden set. Lisa Johnson at Poppy Paperie created some cards that actually made me pause. They truly are peaceful. You also need to check out what Nichole Heady did with this set. Just click this link, and scroll down to the cards with the blue card bases. Jaw dropping. 
  • Half & Half, Little Labels, Think Big Favories #6, and Congrats All Ways stamp sets could easily become staples that you go to again and again. They would totally be worth the investment!
  • Dies! They look pretty plain at first glance, but check out how Maile Belles uses the Leafy Vine Border (very bottom of page) die, the Half & Half Die Collection, and the Woodgrain Impression Plate (6th one down). Can you see why she's becoming my favorite Papertrey designer?
If you have any projects using stamps or dies from the Papertrey Ink July 2011 release, post a link to your project in the comments section so folks can see what can be done.

I hope you found this helpful and that someone is guarding your wallet because these will be hard to resist!

From my happy place to yours,
Debbie

Saturday, June 18, 2011

Copics!

So I took my first Copic marker class tonight at Cool Scrapbook Stuff in Poway (San Diego), CA. If you're local, you may know it. I'm not quite sure how I feel about it yet. I thought our instructor was pretty good (I'll add a link to her blog later...posting from my phone right now). She was really energetic and was willing to take time with us individually, so that helped. All of her samples were beautiful, but I felt like I was back in kindergarten again trying to color inside the lines...and failing miserably. I'm going to blame the ink though. It has a life of it's own and actually moves around, which is what makes the markers so cool!

For those of you who aren't familiar with Copics (hope that didn't sound snotty), here's a little background. I didn't know much before class besides the fact that they are blendable alcohol ink markers that are really expensive. I think they were originally used by Anime and Manga artists, designers, etc., so you know they're good. The sketch markers run $5-7, and from what I can tell they seem to be the most popular. It seems the value comes in that they last a while and they create beautiful images. The ink can sit unused for up to 3 years (but at that price you need to use them). They're refillable, and from what I can tell a refill is about the same price of the marker but can refill a sketch marker 6-8 times. That's a great value when you consider the price of the marker. There's lots more to know like how to understand colors and other useful stuff, but it may be better to take a class.

Have any of you used Copics? I'm thinking about taking a blending class or a card making class next to try a variety of techniques. I would love any advice or resources you know of. I'll probably be scoping the web for tutorials this weekend and searching for places I can get the markers a bit cheaper. Can't wait to hear what knowledge you all have about this!

From my happy place to yours,
Debbie :)

Sunday, April 3, 2011

New DCWV Stacks!

Not that I need anymore, but DCWV has new stacks out! Check out the DCWV blog to see a video of the new stacks. They're going to be available at JoAnn Stores and www.joann.com in the next few weeks. They're also giving you the opportunity to win some of the stacks! You can enter up to four times and the details are on the blog. I'm hooked on Lemon Flower and Royal Garden. What are your favorites?

By the way, they now have project ideas on the back of the stacks. Genius!

Friday, March 18, 2011

Planning for Scraps

Hey folks! Again, it's been another long stretch between posts. I promise I'm going to try to get better at this. A warm welcome to my new followers! I hope to visit your blogs soon to see what you have going on. This is a kind of quick post about something so simple, but so vital...scraps! I am a huge fan of scraps and using scraps. Sometimes (lots of times actually) I challenge myself to make entire projects from scraps. My favorite part about scraps? They save you money!!!!

Most of you are veterans in the crafting game, and you know all about this, but I recently got my sister into cardmaking and scrapbooking. It's really great to have conversations with folks who are new to paper crafting (I'm still pretty new myself) because there's a lot you know that you take for granted. I sometimes forget that I had to troll blogs and make mistakes to know what I know, so I thought I would share this quick tip:

When cutting, especially for a mass production project (like the wedding invites I'm doing now, that I will post soon...no I'm not getting married), plan your scraps. Figure out how much of your 12x12 or 8.5x11 paper you will need for your project and make your first cut the cut that will leave you with the largest scrap. The largest scrap is the most versatile scrap because you have more options with how you use it or cut it down. When you're left with lots of little scraps, they can only be used for layers, punches, die cutting, etc. Still not a bad deal, but how awesome is it to have a scrap that can be used as a base for an entirely different project?!

For example, I'm doing 5x7 flat (meaning they don't fold) invites from 12x12. paper. I could cut the paper at 5" two times to create two 5x12 pieces and one 2x12 piece. I could then cut each of the larger pieces at 7" to create two 5x7 pieces, which would leave me with two 5x5 pieces. So, that would give me the two 5x7 pieces I need, plus a 2x12 piece and two 5x5 pieces for my scrap drawer that will eventually get used. Or...

I could figure out that if I'm going to get two 5x7 pieces from a 12x12, I need to create at 7x10 piece that I can cut in half! That means I should cut my 12x12 at 7", leaving me with a 5x12 piece and a 7x12 piece. I would cut 2" off the 7x12 to create the 7x10, and then cut it in half (at 5") to create two 5x7 pieces! But wait...I still have a 5x12 piece. Cut that at 7" to create a third 5x7, leaving you with one 5x5 scrap. It leaves you with fewer scraps, but more invitations. If you don't need the third invite, you can leave the 5x12 piece as is because it is large enough to make a card (possibly a thank you card that coordinates with the invitation) or a layer or border for a scrapbook page.

For my invites, I'm making a belly band to go around the invite so if I leave the 5x12 piece as it is, I can cut it into strips for my belly bands. It's also large enough to run through my printer if I want to print the couple's names on the belly bands before cutting. So many more possibilities there than with a bundle of small scraps.

This is also useful when deciding between 12x12 or 8.5x11 paper. Sometimes 12x12 is more expensive, but you can get more items from it so the cost per piece makes more sense.

I hope someone finds this helpful. It takes a few extra minutes, if you're not good at math like me, but it definitely stretches you materials. Happy scrap planning!

Monday, February 14, 2011

Happy Valentine's Day & Big News!


It's been exactly one month since I last posted! I'm so sorry I haven't been around. Work picked up, and I'm in the middle of selecting our student staff for next year. We're hiring 21 bright & shining faces so there's a lot of time involved, and I'm not even doing the bulk of the work! I'm hoping I can work on some projects and get them up here over this extended weekend.

Here's the exciting news though...
My sister & I started our business! She finally gave me the kick in the butt I needed to make this happen...and by that I mean she set up everything and then said, "ok, go make some cards." We're called "Palmetto Peaches," which represents our South Carolina turned Georgia roots. Our Etsy shop is www.palmettopeaches.etsy.com. We're also on Facebook. Find us at http://www.facebook.com/pages/Palmetto-Peaches/172160169495687 and "like" us! We have pictures of our projects and more info about us. We are selling through Etsy and direct emails/messages. Very exciting times ahead!

Happy Valentine's Day everyone!

From my happy place to yours!
Debbie

Friday, January 14, 2011

Extra 20% off at Michael's

Click below for an extra 20% off of your entire purchase. Did you know you can usually use these in combination with the 40% & 50% off coupons? Some of the clerks will do it, no problem, but with some you have to be a bit more persistent. The computer does accept it. Just ask! Unfortunately, I don't have a link to a 40% or 50%, but there are some blogs that post them. Happy shopping!
20% off Michael's Coupon

From my happy place to yours,
Debbie

Thursday, January 13, 2011

twine wrapped card tutorial

First of all, a big huge welcome to my new followers! Am I a dork for being super pumped about having more than 10 followers? Oh well, call me a dork. Won't be the first time. Please leave comments. I especially love suggestions and feedback...especially if you have cool tips and tricks to save time or take my work to the next level! I'll be sure to check out your blogs as well.

This is my first real tutorial! I don't have a tripod (and I don't know how to edit video yet) so this is just pics & instructions for now. I'll get on the video thing sooner than later, hopefully.

These cards are small cards made from scraps (I love scraps!) that I'm delivering with no envelopes. Some of my RAs (Resident Assistants) did really well last quarter academically and I wanted to recognize their hard work with a special card and little treat. On to the tutorial!

Materials I used:
Card base - Friendly Forest patterned paper cut 6x4
Layers - Friendly Forest 1x4 coordinating scraps (2 each)
Border punch - EK Success (not sure of the name, but it's a "notebook sheet" punch)
Circle punch - Fiskars 1" punch
1/8 hole punch - Martha Stewart (I only used this because I don't have an SU! slit punch)
"Hello" stamp - Studio G
Large brad from Staples (as with all the other items, any brad will do)
Twine from my stash from the Dollar Tree - about 9.5" or what ever size will go around your card 2 times plus an extra couple of inches
Adhesive - Scotch ATG (anything you normally use to adhere paper will do), Glue Dots (you absolutely need some form of a glue dot. I wouldn't use dimensionals for this because your twine might get caught in it and pull it off.)

Stamp your sentiment on scrap paper and punch it out with the circle punch. Set it aside. Score and fold card base at 3"to make a 3x4 card. Punch one of the layers with a border punch, and glue the two layered pieces together. Make sure the punched sheet is on the left and under the unpunched layer. Use a hole or slit punch about halfway down the top layer near the edge. I used a 1/8 inch punch and just punched a few holes side by side to create a slit.
At this point, or sometime before, you should write your message in your card. You won't want to try to do it after you attach the top layer. Add adhesive to the back of your attached layers and insert brad. Before bending down the prongs, tie the twine around the base. I did it twice because I'm paranoid about my cards falling apart. :)
Bend down the prongs and press them as flat as possible.
Attach to the front of the card. The edge where the brad is will not lay flat against the card. If this is going to bother you, I suggest using dimensional adhesive to attach the layer to the card. Attach a glue dot to the head of the brad.
Attach your sentiment. This is why you need the glue dot (or some other adhesive that attaches paper and metal). Wrap your twine around the card and around the brad. You may have to push up at bit on the brad from behind to get the twine around it.
Try it out and have fun. Use your scraps, and don't worry about sizes and materials. Challenge yourself to just use what you have without cutting any new paper for the entire card and do your own thing!

From my happy place to yours!
Debbie

Saturday, January 8, 2011

Cricut Addiction?

Just in case you were wondering...this is what happens when cartridges are ridiculously cheap and you have five Michael's stores near you. The sad part? I only went to four of them. :-/ My wallet & I are safely at home now so, no worries. :)

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Quick card. Quick post.

It's already been a long week! First week back at work means longer hours, and I feel a little bit like a zombie when I get home. I'm really glad I get to work with such great students though!

This card is a quick card that only required cutting & punching. Pretty sure the black & white paper is s.e.i. (I'll double check tomorrow). It's cut at 6 x 7 and folded in half on the 7" side so it ends up being around 3.5 x 6. It's from a really cute 8x8 pack that I hoard. Patterned/textured paper is my secret weapon. It's like a great dress. It looks like you put in a lot of effort when you really didn't. :)

The pink is from Stampin Up!, and I think it's an old In Color so I don't know the name. That's cut at approx. 2.5x3.5. Black & white strip cut at approx. 1x3.5. Silver rick rack is by Celebrate It (from the holidays) from Michaels. I punched the butterflies with a Marvy punch out of the strips left over from cutting down the original 8x8 sheet. Love using scraps!

Thanks for stopping by! Please follow and/or leave comments. :)

Sunday, January 2, 2011

MPS Design Team

Long post alert!!!! Feel free to skip my banter and start reading just below the picture of the card. :)

Happy New Year! I'm am so excited! Robyn over at My Pink Stamper (MPS) is doing a call for her 2011 design team through a challenge. To be considered for the team, you must do a project using your favorite Cricut cartridge and the colors: pink, green, and brown. Those are her favorite colors. I grew up with tons of pink & green (because of my mom's sorority and the only colors we were allowed to decorate the house with), and my favorite neutral to craft with is brown. That's got to be a sign, right?

I'm a novice Cricut user. I got my Cricut Create over two years ago, but didn't use it much until I moved to San Diego because I didn't have the space to keep it out. Trust me, you use it far less when it has to live in the box! I just got my purple Cricut Expression on Black Friday! Love it!  This is a pretty simple card, but there is one slightly complicated part that I'm very proud I've figured out. Those of you with more Cricut experience may think this is easy, but I'm still pinning a feather in my cap!

I made a baby shower invitation with the Wild Card cartridge. I've yet to make a card from the cart, but I'm constantly using the images on it! Totally worth purchasing!!!


Materials list:

  • Wild Card Cricut cartridge (You can find similar images on the "In a Child's Year" cartridge).
    • Duck image: <SaftyPin> icon
    • Umbrella image: <Shower> icon
  • Card stock: Stampin' Up! Crumb Cake (card base), Recollections (Michael's) card stock in pink & green (I don't know exact colors because they aren't listed on the package, but they come in the same pack). 
  • Sizzix Dots embossing folder (can also use Cuttlebug Swiss Dots or any other desired pattern).
  • Cuttlebug, Big Shot, or other die-cutting/embossing machine or dry embossing technique
  • 1/8 in. brown satin brown ribbon 
  • ATG Adhesive
  • Foam dots or dimensional adhesive
  • Punches: Stampin Up! Word Window and Modern Label

Making the Card
  • The card base is cut at a standard A2 size (4.25 x 5.5).
  • The green layer on top is cut at 1/2 inch smaller on each side (3.75 x 5).
  • The duck is cut at 1.5 in. (real dial size turned off) and attached with the dimensional foam adhesive.
  • The umbrella is cut at 6 in. (real dial size turned off) using the center point feature (instructions below).
  • The ribbon is attached using the MPS Cheater Method.
  • The sentiment is printed in brown ink and then cut using the SU! word window punch.

Center Point
Most of the tutorials I've seen use center point to cut a picture or printed journaling into a shape. I'm going to tell you how to position an image using the center point feature so you can strategically position an image and use the negative space of the image (the hole left in the paper after you cut the image) like I did for the umbrella. Using the negative space from the cut out is one of my favorite things to do! I think it's a different and interesting way to use the Cricut.

Please note: You will need a Cricut Expression or a Cricut Create to do this. If you have a gypsy, there are lots of great tutorials on-line about setting up templates, which would let you create this card  very easily without the center point feature, using any Cricut!

For this card, I decided I wanted the umbrella cut in the bottom 3 in. corner of the card, therefore the center of my cutting area was 1.5 in. from the bottom and 1.5 in. from the right side of the card. Here's how I did it:
  1. Place 3.75 x 5 in. card stock in the top right corner of your cutting mat. The 5.5 edge should go along the side of the mat that will be fed into the machine.
  2. Position your blade so it's 1.5 in. from the bottom of your card stock and 1.5 in. from the right. (When I say "bottom & right," this is in reference to how the layer will be placed on the card. If it's helpful for you to use the way it's placed on the mat as the reference for orientation, it would be 1.5 in. from the left and bottom.) This is my center point.
    1. The left/right coordinates on your screen will be 3.5 & 2.25 respectively.
  3. Turn on your center point feature.
  4. Select the image (<shower> icon) and cut! Below is what you get. :)

Trial & Error FYI - You can't use the center point function if the Real Deal Size feature is selected. I'm not sure why, but when I tried it didn't work. That meant I had to do a few test cuts of the umbrella to find the size I wanted it because on the Wild Card cartridge, all elements are cut in proportion to the size of the card. For instance, I instructed you to cut the umbrella at 6 in. Clearly, this is not a 6 in. umbrella. This is the size the umbrella should be to fit a 6 in. card. Hope that makes sense.

Go use your scraps to play around with the center point feature and try using negative space from your cuts. It's great for words...especially if you want to do smaller letters! Leave comments & questions. I promise to respond. :)