Friday, December 31, 2010

SOTM Blog Hop ~ Find your Style

Welcome to our first Stamp of the Month Blog Hop of 2011!   

  If you have come here fromTamera Pope's Blog, you are on the right path! The blog hop is a great big circle, so you can start here and work your way all around.  If you get lost along the way, you’ll find the complete list of participating consultants here on Helen's Blog.

We have bunches of Close To My Heart Consultants sharing their creations using this month's SOTM and other great CTMH products on their blogs. To keep on hoppin' just click on the link at the end of the post on each blog to move to the next one!

Here we go!

January 's SOTM, which is called Find Your Style, is a beautiful set of  9 stamps. How versatile is this set? I can see so many possibilities and I absolutely love the bird, the butterfly, the dress form, the shoe and that friendship sentiment.  I can't wait to play with this one even more. 
 

Here is what I made using this set.




This is the front of the card unopened.
   But it has a surprise, it is a stand up easel card that I made into a desk calendar for 2011.


  Here it is shown standing up. I got the great little calendars at Stamp On This.

The roses are made with rolled ribbon. I love these, 
they are all the rage right now and they are so easy to make. 

The bottom portion has a sentiment that I think is perfect for a calendar. It says,

Yesterday is history, 
Tomorrow is a mystery,
Today is a gift. 
That's why we call it the Present.


Products Used:
Paper: Wings Level 2 Paper Pack
Inks: Olive, Juniper and Vineyard Berry 
Stamps: Find Your Style, Dreams Come True, and The Present
Accessories: Hollyhock Twill Ribbon, Pearl Opaques, Mini Medley in Black, Bitty Sparkles

 Now "Hop" on over to Jean McNulty's Blog to see her work! Be sure to visit all the Consultants' blogs to see some awesome artwork and fun ideas! Share the love and leave some comments as you go.

Remember, the January SOTM is only available until January 31st! There are two ways to get this beautiful set for free as well as get some awesome discounts on more new products. For more information on the Inspirations promotion and how you can get this beautiful set, Find Your Style free click HERE.


Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Card Club info and January Classes

I hope that you are all enjoying the holiday season, I cant believe that Christmas is only a few days away. Since that is the case I know that January is literally just around the corner. I have some fun things planned for January so I wanted to get this out to everyone so you can plan for some fun crafty time after the hustle and bustle of the holidays are over.

First of all I will be starting a card club in January. Here is how it will work. I have a few people interested already but we need a few more to make it work so come on and join us, you won't be sorry.

Card Club Details

  • Card club (still looking for a better name) will meet monthly. The first meeting will be on Friday night January 22nd from 6-9 pm. We will then decide on the date for the next meeting as a group.
  • To join the club all you need to do is commit to spend at least $20/month on any products of you choice (that's very EASY to do). What you spend your money on is up to you but I will let you know in advance what we will be using at the next meeting so you can order your own products to go along with our projects if you want to.
  • At our first meeting we will draw names for each month's hostess. The hostess for each month brings snacks for the group and gets the hostess rewards products for that month's group order.Each hostess is guaranteed to at least $25 in FREE products during their month, and more if the order total is higher. Hostesses also benefit from whatever monthly campaign happens to be running during their month.
  • At each monthly meeting (usually at my house unless a hostess wants it at hers) we will create at least two cards at no additional charge to group members. Some months we will make other things like 3D items, gifts or home decor.
  • Joining the club means that you commit for the duration (8 months) so that everyone has a chance to reap the hostess rewards. At the end of the 8 months we will start a new round and members can drop or add at that time. 
Let me know soon if you would like to join, I promise you it will be fun and who can't use some once a month scheduled "me" time.


Other January Classes

Saturday January 15th - 1:00pm -  Calendar Class -

Create a beautiful scrapbook/calendar that you will use all year. Each month will have a calendar on one side and a scrapbook page to add your own photos to on the reverse side, all packaged up neatly in a 6" x 6" flip album. When we are finished you will have completed 24 beautiful pages in a cute calendar/album. This class will be done in three parts, meeting once a month in January, February and March. The other two dates will be on Saturday, February 12th and Saturday, March 12th. In the first class you will receive the  6" X 6"  12 page display album. We will create a cover and four double sided pages for January, February, March and April. February's class will pick up where we left off and complete May, June, July and August's pages. Then finally in March we will finish it all by doing pages for September, October, November and December. You will take your calendar home after each class and bring it back the next month to add the additional pages. Cost for this one is $20 total. $10 for the first class that includes the album and $5 for each of the next two months. Only the initial $10 needs to be paid in advance so that I can order albums for everyone. If you would like to do this but can't commit to the dates let me know and I can make you a kit to complete at home for the same price.


Valentine Class - Friday, January 28th 6:00-9:00pm  OR Saturday, January 29th 1:00-4:00pm
-
Cost is $12 for 8 cards (2 each of 4 designs). 
  In this class we will make 8 fun Valentine cards using lots of the products from the new Idea Book that comes out February 1st. Price includes cut papers, embellishments and envelopes.

New Catalog Open House - Friday Night February 4th- 5:00-9:00pm- 
Stop by my house anytime from 5:00-9:00 pm for a FREE copy of the brand new bigger and better CTMH Idea Book. I will have snacks, drinks, a free make and take project and door prizes. Plus, anyone who places an order at my open house gets a free petite perks stamp set and 10% off of their next order.

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to all!

I hope to see you in 2011.

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Interactive Santa

 I love interactive cards, ones that "do" something and I had been looking for this book by Annie's Attic unsuccessfully for a while.

 When I was in Estes Park at my favorite Scrapbooking retreat this summer we took a field trip to a local scrapbooking store. Imagine my surprise when I found the book I had been looking for there. 

When I got back to the retreat i looked through the pages trying to decide which card I was going to attempt first. As always seems to happen at retreats it ended all too soon and I never got a chance to try one out. 

Fast forward a couple of months to October when I was working on my SOTM swap using the Share The Magic Set. I decided to try a card with a hidden pop up. 

Here is the card.

I went all out on this one.
I think this card has more techniques
on one card than I have ever done before.

Santa's suit is colored with copics. 
His beard is Liquid Applique. 
The fur on his suit is fun flocked.
His boots are and belt are covered in Liquid Glass for that shiny touch. 
His Belt buckle is embossed in silver
and his toy sack is paper pieced...
whew...and all of that is before I even get to my favorite part...the hidden surprise!

When you pull on the little tab with the snowflake 
at the bottom of the card Rudolph pops up
and wishes you Happy Holidays. 

This is by far my favorite Christmas card I have created this year. Thanks for looking!

Sunday, December 5, 2010

More bang for your buck

CTMH has a great deal for December.


  Place an order of $20 or more on my WEBSITE from December 1 (9am MST) – 31, 2010, and we’ll reward you with a popular, retired D-size stamp set for FREE! Talk about getting more for your money - the free stamp set is valued at $22.95! We’re sure you’ll be thrilled with the set we pick out for you. We’re also giving you FREE shipping/handling and tax on your free stamp set. That’s a lot of Plenty for your Twenty!

*Excluding tax and shipping/handing. Qualifying purchases must include shippable products (Studio J® layout purchases excluded, Studio J memberships and 5-packs will count toward a qualifying order only if shippable items are also ordered). Limit one free stamp set per qualifying order.  Please be sure to wait until at least 9am MST on 12/1 to order!

There's no need to enter a code or add anything to your cart.  Your free stamp set will automatically be added to your order when it is shipped!  You might even get a stow away sticky boy. He is jumpimg into random packages all month long.


If you have never heard of Sticky Boy check him out

I'm in the Friday Five!

I have been trying to participate in the Heart 2 Heart Challenges found here.
They are great for a little burst of creative inspiration.
This is the second time one of my creations has made it's way into the Friday Five. 
First it was for my Halloween mini album found here
And this time for my Thanks card.

Heart 2 Heart




There are some really talented and creative people who participate in the challenges, I am so honored!

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Take Note

Here is another great idea for a cool gift this year.
I love dry erase boards. They come in very handy for 
messages, reminders, shopping lists etc.
BUT
They are usually so gosh darn UGLY. 

By altering a picture frame you can create your own 

F~A~B~U~L~O~U~S

Dry erase note board. 

Here is one I did with the Maginfique papers from CTMH. 
Isn't it pretty?

 

For this one I used the Cherry-O papers (also from CTMH) and some 
of the coordinating My Stickease stickers. 



The grocery lists for both of these were printed on the computer. 

Both of the frames are 11" x 14" and  were found at a thrift store for $2.99 each. 
Of course you could go out and buy new frames but for me this was so much more cost effective 
and I  love re-purposing something and making it new again. 


Just remove whatever is inside and create your inside just as 
you would any scrapbook page only in the 11" x 14" size.
I used a piece of poster board as my base.  Be sure to use only flat 
embellishments since the glass still needs to go on top.

Once you have created your note board page just replace the glass 
and use any dry erase marker to write directly on the glass. 

I found colorful dry erase markers at Target and attached them with velcro
so they are handy whenever you need them.

I love how you could make one of these to match any decor. 
If you make one send me a link so I can checck it out.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

How to make your own glitter ornaments using reinkers.

As with many of the things I create I cannot take full credit for this idea either. I saw this for the first time last year on another blog. I wish I could remember where so I could give credit but I read so many craft blogs I really have no idea where I saw it originally. 


This is a fun an easy way to create custom glitter ornaments
in any color you want.
The possibilities are truly endless. 
Here is what you need:
  • Clear Glass Ornaments 
  • CTMH Re-Inker in your favorite colors
  • Prisma Glitter
  • Funnel
  • Paper Towels
  • Opaque White Stazon Ink
  • Small stamps and clear blocks
  • Toilet Paper Tube
Remove hanger from ornament. Fill with 30 drops of re-inker in the color of your choice. Remember that the re-inker is very concentrated so colors will be darker that when stamping with the inks. You may need more or less depending on the size of your ornament. 
 Roll ornament in a circular motion with your hands 
to swirl the ink evenly over the entire inside. 
Be sure neck of ornament is facing down and you have paper towels
over your work surface to catch any drips.


Continue rolling and swirling until ink has covered entire 
inside surface including the neck. A toilet paper tube cut into thirds makes a perfect stand for your ornaments 
while you are working on them.

The ornament shown has an opal type finish.
Clear ornaments are available in truly clear or with the opal finish. 
Both varieties work well for this technique. 
I have a couple of the non opal ones shown below.

Using a funnel, add about a teaspoon of prisma glitter. 
This works best when done immediately while ink is still wet.

 Hold a small piece of paper towel over the opening and shake well until glitter covers the entire inside surface.

 


This is what your glittered ornament will look like.


Dump any extra glitter into a small cup and save for another project. The glitter will be tinted so do not try and dump it back into the original container, but I ended up with some fun
multi colored glitter to use later.

You COULD stop here and have a plain glittered ball. 
But it is even more fun to decorate the outside too.
I used Stazon Opaque White ink and a small snowflake from the Snow Flurries set. Stamping on the round surface of the ornament takes practice so have some stazon cleaner on hand to remove any smears or smudges.
It was hard to get a good picture of the stamped image with the light reflecting off the glass but you can kind of see it here.
Here are three ornaments I did in about 10 minutes time. The colors I used are from left to right Lagoon, Pacifica and Pear. The Lagoon one on the left was done with the opalized ornament and the Pacifica and Pear are plain clear, just so you can see the difference.

Allow them to dry several hours or overnight 
before reattaching the hanger. 

So what color will you try? There are SIXTY Close To My Heart colors to choose from so you can make these ornaments to match any decor.

To order prisma glitter or re-inkers click on the link to my website on the right sidebar. 
Enjoy!

Saturday, November 6, 2010

Got Gift Cards??

This is a repost of a tutorial I did on my old blog from November 2009.
I hope it comes in handy again this year.

Everyone loves a gift card. They are great to give and to receive. What I don't love is the tacky packaging most of them come in. Here is a way to dress up your gift cards and make them much more presentable and fun.
Follow my little tutorial to learn how to make your own.

Pop Up Pocket Gift Card Holder




Supplies-
Card Base- cut 2 of cardstock measuring 7” x 4 1/4"
Pattern 1 – 2 ½ “ x 4” (front), 2 ½” x 4 ¼” (pocket cover)
Pattern 2 – 2” x 4” (front), 1 ½” x 6” (reverse side for flap)
Flap – 1 ¾ “ x 6” cut from cardstock
Inside stamped image - 1 5/8” x 1 5/8”
Image frame–1 ¾” x 1 ¾” of coordinating colored cardstock
Strong adhesive – I use what I call “red line tape” but it goes by several names.
Corner rounder
Stampin Up word window punch
Circle punch

Score both card base pieces at 4 1/4”.


Fold flaps towards inside of card. Use the red line tape to hold the two flap pieces together on three sides

with the top remaining open. Attach the 2 ½” x 4” piece of patterned paper on the front side of the pocket close to the open edge. There will be a small space between the edge of the paper and the fold. Use a circle punch to punch a half circle out of the top of the pocket through the patterned paper and both layers of cardstock. This makes it easier to remove the gift card from the pocket.

Stamp desired image on the 1 ¾” x 1 ¾” white cardstock. Back with the 1 5/8” x 1 5/8” of coordinating colored cardstock and attach to pocket front. Stamp desired sentiment to the right of the gift card pocket. Add two pieces of patterned paper as background on front of card. I use the Stampin Up word window punch for the slot and punch through all layers about ¼ “ from the edge. If you don’t have the punch cut a 1 5/8” slot through all layers using a craft knife.


To make the flap closure, center the 1 ½” x 6” piece of patterned paper onto the 1 ¾” x 6” strip of cardstock and ink the edges. Round the corners of one end. Score through both layers at 4 ¼ from the straight edge. Insert the rounded corners through the slot and line up the score line with the edge of the card. Add adhesive from score line to straight edge and press firmly to back of card.
Complete the gift card holder by adding stamped images and embellishments of your choice.



I used the Ms. Holiday Cheer stamp set from CTMH. I think this is a perfect way to present a gift card to your favorite shopaholic.
All papers, inks, stamps and embellishments are from Close to My Heart. To get them visit my website.

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Thanks

Every year at this time I try to pause and reflect on all the things I am thankful for. And more importantly I try to remember to say Thank You to all those in my life I appreciate.


This year Close To My Heart is helping us out with this awesome Stamp of The Month, A Little Thanks.
      
Here is the card I created for our consultant swap using this set and Magnifique.
 
 
Here is a tutorial I found online to show you how.
And here is a close up of the rose. I used a 2" x 2" square of colonial white cardstock to make these and the inked the edges with Sky ink and added a gem from the Blue/Green sparkles. I see a lot of these little beauties in my future.

Click HERE to see a slideshow of my group's creations.


Sunday, October 31, 2010

Washer Necklace Tutorial

I just realized that Christmas is less than two months away! Since I am a big crafter and my budget is VERY tight this year I am always looking for easy and inexpensive gift ideas. I have seen these on several blogs and on the Splitcoast Stampers and the CTMH message boards for a while. I am not sure who to credit the original idea to but it was a good one. This weekend I decided to make some of these beauties for an upcoming craft fair and for Holiday gifts. They were quick and easy and very inexpensive to make!

This is a picture of my first batch of washer necklaces.

I found a few different tutorials online but I didn't follow any 
of them exactly so here is my own little tutorial to show you what I did. Please excuse the pictures that may not be extra clear, it is hard to get good pictures with one hand inside at night.

This is what you will need ~
  • Washers (found at your local hardware store in different sizes for just pennies)
  • Scraps of Scrapbook paper
  • Circle punches
  • Scissors
  • Craft Knife
  • Finishing Files from CTMH or emery board/sanding block
  • Liquid Glass, Glossy Accents, Diamond Glaze or Crystal Effects (same stuff just made by different companies)
  • Silver Spacer bead
  • Cording
  • Clasp
  • Jewelry pliers
Start by punching circles using circle punches is sizes closest to the sizes of your washers. If you don't have circle punches then you can always trace the washers and cut them out by hand. For a double sided necklace use two coordinating papers.

 
  If you are doing a double sided necklace like the one I am showing here it doesn't really matter which side of the washer you use. For a one sided necklace be sure to adhere the paper to the flat side of the washer leaving the softer beveled side to be close to the skin when worn. Using the Liquid Glass (or your brand) apply a light layer to the washer and spread evenly using a small paint brush or even your finger. Add the paper circle and set aside paper side down to dry for 5-10 minutes.

If your circle punch is not exactly the size of the washer use scissors or a
craft knife cut the circle even with the sides of the washer.
 Use the round finishing file to punch through the paper covering the center hole and
file in a downward motion (not back and forth as that may tear the paper)
around the center hole to remove the paper or use a craft knife to cut out the center hole.
Repeat for second side if doing a two sided necklace. Once the paper is adhered and dry use the finishing files to sand any rough edges or excess paper around the outside or in the inside hole.
The CTMH finishing files are perfect for getting into the center holes.
Use a sanding block or emery board to sand the outside edges as well.

At this point you can add gems or pearls if you want them (see photo above). I didn't add any to this sample necklace. 

Now comes the fun part. Use the Liquid Glass and apply a generous coat covering the entire washer. If you have added gems or pearls go right over the top of them. Set aside for at least 24 hours without touching until completely dry. If you are doing double sided you will need to wait the full 24 hours before applying the Liquid Glass to the second side and then set aside for an additional 24 hours until both sides are dry.

To finish off your necklace cut a 36 inch piece of cord in the color of your choice. Cording is available from most craft stores in a variety or colors, materials and thicknesses. Here I am using satin cording I found in the ribbon section of Hobby Lobby. Fold the cord in half. Put the center loop down over the front of your washer covering the hole. Pull the ends up and over the top edge and back around through the hole in the washer and the loop of cord. Pull tight. 

Add silver spacer bead (or any other bead with a hole large enough) over 
both cord ends and push towards washer.
Using both sections of cord together tie a simple knot above the bead to hold it in place.

To make an adjustable length overlap top of necklace by about 6 inches. Tie ends over each other making square knots, one on each side. Knots can then be slid closer together for a longer necklace or farther apart for a shorter one.
There are also clasps available that easily pinch over the edges of the cord using jewelry pliers available at most craft stores. Here is a pic of one of the styles I have used. 
Here is the finished project. A double sided washer necklace!


Special Tip: After taking these pics I used my hair straightener to straighten out the cord. 
Worked like a charm!

These were super simple and I love how they came out. 
Try it for yourself, or if you are interested you can always buy one of mine. Special orders gladly accepted.

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