Tuesday, January 19, 2010

My first quilt

I decided to try and make a quilt for my youngest son for Christmas. Seeing all the quilts that Jill Olsen has made with her Big Shot has inspired me greatly. Never mind the fact that I've never made a quilt before.
So I went to my local quilt shop and was instantly overwhelmed upon walking in the door. I think I now understand how someone who has never stamped feels when they open up a Stampin'Up! catalog! I was able to overcome my initial feelings and walked around the store several times looking at all the gorgeous fabrics. I picked out some bright, fun fabrics that I thought my son might like.
Once I got the fabric home, I got out my Big Shot and my Scallop Square die and started cutting away.One thing I didn't mention before is that I decided to take on this task approximately a week before Christmas! Without the Big Shot I probably would have been cutting the fabric for days! I was able to cut all those squares in minutes. It was really fun rolling the fabric thought the Big Shot and seeing all those perfectly cut scallop squares come out. I intended to make my quilt a rag quilt like the purse I made. But then I decided to see how the squares worked sewing them into a traditional quilt pattern. I am quite happy with the finished product, considering this is the first quilt I've ever made. My son loved his Christmas gift and my oldest son asked me to make him a quilt too.
Don't be intimidated. If I can sew a quilt, I'd say anyone can! I've got at least 3 or 4 more quilts that I want to make. Be careful, you might just be bitten by the quilt bug too!

Saturday, January 9, 2010

More Big Shot Quilting

I hope everyone enjoyed wonderful Christmas and New Years celebrations with family and friends. It seems that we prepare for so long and it's all over in an instant!
We had a house guest Christmas week and it was exhausting!
After Christmas I decided to try and make one of the quilted purses that have been popping up all over Stampin'Up! blogland. A few weeks before Christmas I bought a new sewing machine. So I was all set to give it a try. I used my Big Shot and the Scalloped Square die to cut out my fabric. The Big Shot honestly slices through that fabric like a hot knife through butter! I think cutting the fabric is the most tedious part of sewing. I believe I had all my fabric cut out in a matter of minutes!
Making these bags is so addicting. They come together really quickly and would make a fantastic gift for anyone. I think the most difficult part of making one is choosing the fabrics. There are so many beautiful fabrics out there. I have renewed my desire to sew. I have another project I made with the Big Shot and the Scallop Square die. I'll show you that next time. It was a very special item for a very special young man. Nope, not a purse!!


Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Flower Pin Card

I have a friend who recently had some surgery, and I wanted to send her a flower pin to cheer her up. I didn't want to just stuff the pin in an envelope and send it off. So I made a card to attach the pin onto. It's a very basic, simple card. The only real embellishment is the scallop border on the right side of the card.
I pinned the flower to a small piece of cardstock, and then used glue dots to adhere the pin onto the card front. My friend simply had to pull the flower off the card front and the pin was ready to wear.

Thanks for looking!

Friday, December 18, 2009

Decor Elements Chalkboard

SO what do you do when you have a piece of artwork hanging in your dining room and you no longer like it? Throw it out and go buy something new? Not anymore. I had a picture that I bought over 7 years ago when we moved into this house. It's pretty big, measuring 42"x 30". At the time, I was just "filling walls". The picture was ok, but I didn't love it. Well fast forward to 7 years later, and I still don't love it. In fact, I'm pretty sick of looking at it! So I got out my trusty spray paint and painted the frame white. Then I bought some chalkboard paint and rolled that on the glass. I rolled on 3 coats of the chalkboard paint. Right over the glass. The picture is still under the glass in fact. I purchased a Decor Element with this project in mind. After the chalkboard paint cured for about a week, I applied the Decor Element. And this is the final project. It is hanging in my dining room and we love it! I must say we don't have a formal dining room, and most people probably wouldn't want something like this in their dining room, maybe a kitchen. I didn't have any wall space in my kitchen, so it's here in my dining room. I will probably use it as a menu board for my family.

The Decor Elements is a Stampin'Up! product.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Lovely as a (Christmas) Tree

I have a super easy card to show you today. A perennial favorite stamp set by all is Lovely As A Tree. And I am no exception. It will be a sad day when/if Stampin'Up! retires this great set. Let's hope it's a long ways off!
This card is pretty self explanatory. I did add Dazzling Diamonds to the focal tree, not sure if that will show up on the blog post. All supplies are Stampin'Up! as always!

Friday, November 20, 2009

Big Shot Flowers

I've been busy making flowers using the Big Shot and Sizzix Dies. Once you start making them, they are addictive! I've made mine into pins you can wear on a jacket or a tote bag or even a purse. I've seen smaller versions made into hair accessories for little girls which are too cute! I plan to make some of those soon. I first saw the idea from Shelli Gardner, the Founder of Stampin'Up! She had worn one to the Stampin'Up! Convention last summer. Shelli doesn't usually provide instructions on things she creates, but so many Demonstrators asked her how she made them, she decided to break her own rule just this once for us. She graciously provided directions for us on her blog. They are SO super easy to make. You just need a die or two and the Big Shot, some fabric and you're all set!

This is the first flower I made. Shelli made her flowers using the Flower Folds die, which I didn't have. So I improvised and used my scallop circle dies. I used the largest Scallop Circle as well as the Scallop Circle #2 die. I cut several circles of each size out of my fabric. Then I started folding and layering the Scallops. I used a needle and thread to tack them together as I went. I can't remember how many layers I used in this flower, but it was alot! When I had enough layers sewed together, I washed and dried the flowers in my machines to fray the edges a bit. Then I hot glued a pin back on the backside of the flower and on the front I hot glued a covered button I made using a button kit I purchased at a local sewing goods store. And that was it. Super simple!

For this next flower, I finally got my Flower Folds Die and I cut out lots of flowers in different fabrics. I folded them into quarters and just started layering them in a circle. I again tacked them down with a needle and thread as I went. I only used 1 size of flowers for this pin. Again, I used many layers of flowers. I finished it the same way with the pin on the back and the covered button on the front.

This last flower is the flower that Shelli wore and gave the directions to on her blog. I used 3 different sizes of flowers from the Flower Folds die. These flowers are folded and half and kind of weaved together layer by layer. I still tacked them together as I went. I finished with the pin on the back and the covered button I made on the front. I think this one and the first flower pins are my favorites. I love the first one because I improvised using a different die than what was originally called for. I like that it has a bit more dimension than the other flowers too. I'll definitely be making some more of these little flowers. I want to make some in a much smaller size for little girls and even babies as hair clips. I think they would be adorable!
I'm also about to start making the scallop square quilted purse that Angie Juda has had on her blog. And then onto a real quilt! All with the Big Shot! Who knew it was so versatile and definitely for more than just paper!


Tuesday, November 3, 2009

My first Christmas card of the season

I made this card a few weeks ago when I was making the cards from my last blog post. I guess I was in a "square" mood. This one sure has ALOT of squares on it. I suppose this card does qualify to be a clean and simple card. There wasn't any extra space on the front to add anything else.

I do like the inside of the card. I stamped the Santa using the same stamp I used from the front of the card in the 3rd generation using Ruby Red ink. Then I overstamped that with a sentiment from Heard From The Heart in Always Artichoke ink.

All supplies Stampin'Up!
Stamps: Christmas Punches and Heard From The Heart
Ink: Ruby Red and Always Artichoke
Cardstock: Very Vanilla, Ruby Red and Always Artichoke
Accessories: 1 1/4" Square Punch, Scallop Square Punch
Have a wonderful day!

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Moving on

Time to move on to Thanksgiving. I'm not sure how many people actually send Thanksgiving cards, but I try to send them to family members I won't see.
For the first card, I thought I'd try a grid layout. I don't think I've ever done this style of card before. It can be somewhat tedious to line up the elements evenly. I "think" I came pretty close!
This first card uses the acorn image from The More The Merrier and the sentiment from Loads of Love Accessories. Probably not your usual choice of sets to use together! I used classic fall colors, Pumpkin Pie, Soft Suede and Very Vanilla.

I'm trying to get in the habit of showing the insides of my cards. Here I used the pumpkins from Loads Of Love Accessories all across the bottom of the card.

This next card I really like alot. I stamped my own background papers. I used the large oak leaf stamp from Lovely As A Tree. I used the rock and roll technique to get the color variations on the leaves. Then on the More Mustard layer, I stamped the small leaf image from the same set.
The turkey image is from Voila To Go. I watercolored it with inks and blender pens. The sentiment is from Holiday Best. I did pop the sentiment up with dimensionals.

For the inside of this card, I stamped the oak leaf image again in Always Artichoke for a tone on tone look.
I don't make many square cards, these are 5" square. I had fun making these ones.
Thanks for looking!
All supplies are Stampin'Up!

Monday, October 12, 2009

Halloween Notecard Tote

I made this notecard tote from the Sizzix Box#2 die from Stampin'Up!
It's made from 2 boxes placed back to back and sticky stripped together. I made 4 notecards with envelopes to put inside my tote, but you could easily fit several more.

Here are the 2 card designs I made for the tote. The notecards measure 3x3", just the perfect size to tuck into a little Halloween gift for your favorite ghost or goblin.

I randomly stamped the small spider image from the Eat, Drink and Be Scary stamp set onto Pumpkin Pie textured cardstock.

You can see how much room is left in the tote for extra notecards. I also used the oval punch to punch a hole for the handle in the tote.

Close ups of my 2 card designs.

Thanks for visiting!

Monday, October 5, 2009

A Sympathy card and an experiment

Recently I needed a sympathy card to send out to the family of a friend that had passed away unexpectedly. I suppose nobody likes creating sympathy cards, but I feel handmade ones are so much more meaningful to the family members who receive them. I kept this one pretty simple. I used the Inspired by Nature stamp set as well as the sentiments from Close As A Memory. I also stamped the inside of the card, but didn't think to photograph that before I sent it out. I did use a retired background stamp Canvas. I love the texture it adds to the card base. For anyone that reads my blog on a regular basis, you've probably figured out how often I use Confetti White cardstock. I love how it adds interest to any image you stamp on it.
Now for something totally different. I've decided to take up another craft! Call me crazy.....one of my friends has.....you know who you are! I wanted something to do at night when I'm spending time with my husband while he flips through every channel our Direct TV receiver gets.....*rolling eyes*. Years ago, I used to do counted cross stitch. I loved doing it then, but I don't have the patience or eyesight for that anymore LOL So I decided on embroidery....simple embroidery. I got the idea from a blog I visited that offered a free pattern that you transferred on a flour sack kitchen towel. That got the wheels in my head turning. I wondered how I could fit stamping into this new found craft. So this is my experiment. I stamped the Baroque Border wheel onto my washed and ironed flour sack towel. I used Bashful Blue ink because I didn't want a dark color to have to stitch over. I plan on stitching in a single color. I didn't heat set the ink, because after I'm done stitching I hope the ink will wash out and it won't be visible under my threads. I'll update the process as I go along. I have high hopes that this will work! Hopefully some people on my Christmas list will be getting some of these stitched flour sack towels come Christmas morning!

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Covered notepads with tutorial

Today I have 3 different notepads to show you. The last 2 are stepped up versions of this basic covered notepad.
For the first one, I used Soft Suede, More Mustard and Whisper White cardstocks. I used the Sanded Background stamp on the Soft Suede cardstock, and then used the It's Beautiful Jumbo Wheel in Soft Suede ink on the More Mustard cardstock. The acorn stamp is from The More The Merrier set. I watercolored the acorn with Soft Suede and More Mustard inks and blender pens. I used circle punches to cut out the images, popped the acorn on Dimensionals and mounted them on a Soft Suede Scalloped Circle Punch which I pierced at each scallop. I used a piece of Soft Suede Dotted Grosgrain Ribbon to embelish the front.

Open the cover and here is the notepad. I repeatedly stamped the acorn image in Soft Suede ink on a piece of Soft Suede cardstock to cover the top of the notepad. This is a very nice notepad that is still fairly quick to produce.

This one I made using Bermuda Bay cardstock. I'll be honest, I'm not thrilled with this one. I think the bright color just threw me off. Anyone that knows me personally, knows I am more of a "muted color" person. I had a real hard time with this one! I stamped the background with an image from Boho Backgrounds in Bermuda Bay ink. The flourishes are die cut with my Big Shot and the Swirls Scribbles Sizzlet die. I stamped It's All in the Details from the Favorite Things stamp set onto Kraft cardstock with Chocolate Chip ink and punched it out with the Oval Scallop punch. The image I stamped in each of the scallops is from Boho Backgrounds as well. I mounted that on a larger oval scallop cut out from the Punch Windows Movers and Shapers dies. I made a closure for this notepad with Hemp Twine and a 5/16th inch White Jumbo Brad and a button from the Button Latte collection.

Here is a close up of the closure. The Hemp Twine just wraps around the button and the brad.

Inside the notepad, there is a pocket on the inside cover. Handy to stash coupons. The Hemp Twine is secured under the notepad before sticking it down to the cardstock. When glueing down all the notepads to the cardstock, I always use Sticky Strip. You need something really strong to hold these together. "A Note" is a portion of A Note of Thanks stamp from the Thank You Kindly stamp set which I inked with my Chocolate Chip marker.

*Edited color of cardstock and ink.....sorry, I was on pain meds last night when I wrote this!! *

This last one is my favorite. I used Always Artichoke, Mellow Moss and Very Vanilla cardstock. I used alot of background stamping as well. Stamps include: Baroque Border Wheel on the Always Artichoke base. Then Pocket Silhouettes on the Mellow Moss layer. I pierced all around the perimeter of this layer as well. I used the small branch image from Always to stamp on the Very Vanilla layer. The monogram is from the Lovely Letters Alphabet. I embossed it with Always Artichoke and Clear Embossing Powder. I punched it out with the Designer Label Punch and framed it with a Vanilla Hodgepodge Hardware Raised Dots Designer Holder. The closure on this one is a bit different from the last one. I adhered 1 piece of Mellow Moss Grosgrain Ribbon behind the notepad before I stuck it down and also behind a 5/16th inch Vanilla Jumbo Brad. Then I tied them closed to form the double bows.

You can see that detail close up here.

Inside there is another pocket. I stamped the Always Artichoke cardstock with the Baroque Border wheel as well.
I typically stamp the backside of the notepads as well. It adds a nice finish to the project.

Here are the dimensions for cutting your cardstock if you'd like to make one for yourself.
For the notepad base:
Start with your cardstock cut to 8 1/2" x 8 1/4"
Score at 2 3/4", 5 7/16" and 5 11/16"
Fold to the first score mark for your inside pocket. Use sticky strip on bottom and right edge only to form the pocket. Fold on 2 other score lines to form spine of notepad. Use sticky strip to adhere notepad to the right of all score lines.
For the notepad header piece:
Cut a piece of cardstock to 2 1/2" x 2"
Score at 5/8" and 7/8"
Fold on score lines and adhere to notepad with sticky strip
I hope you'll give these a try. I'd love to hear any comments you might have.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Pumpkins in a row

I've been busy putting the finishing touches on the stepped-up version of my note pads. I actually decided to also do a stepped up, stepped up version LOL So in the meantime while I finish working on those, I thought I would post a quick little Halloween card.
This card uses The More The Merrier hostess set. It's a pretty simple layout. It really needed some wider ribbon on it, but I didn't have anything appropriate for Halloween besides the Black Gingham ribbon. It's a narrow ribbon, so I decided to use two strands of it across the front of the card. I used the green Chunky Glitter to add a little "bling" to the pumpkins.The black mat under the Pumpkin Pie layer was an after thought. I'm glad it came to me before I snailed it all down, the black layer was really needed here. I used the Flourish texture plate on the Pumpkin Pie layer, though it doesn't show up real well. Click on the picture to enlarge and you should see it better. I thought the Flourish looked like the vines a pumpkin would grow on.

Next time I'll definitely have those note pads for you to see. They are different from the ones in the last post, so you'll want to come back to see for sure!

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Are you a list maker?

I am a big time list maker. I call my lists my paper brain. So when I went to a downline meeting recently and made this project I was very happy!! So super simple to make too. The first notepad uses Christmas Punch stamp set (hostess set). We used Old Olive and Whisper White cardstock. I'll give you a little tutorial on how to make these further down, so scroll on down.

This second note pad is a bit larger. I bought some junior legal pads at national office supply retailer and had them cut them in half. They charge you $2.00 per cut to do this. I got a bunch of them done for $4.00. I'll have plenty of note pads for awhile!

I cut my Creamy Caramel cardstock at 8 1/2" x 3". I stamped it all over with Circle Circus stamps in Creamy Caramel ink. I stamped both sides of the cardstock because I wanted it to look pretty on both sides. Cut another piece of Creamy Caramel at 2 1/2" x 2". Stamped that as well with Circle Circus stamps in Creamy Caramel ink. Score this piece at 5/8" and 7/8". Set this piece aside for now. I used the Big Shot and the Mover's and Shapers die with the Punch Windows Scallop punch and Whisper White cardstock to get the scallop oval. Then I stamped the image from Favorite Things stamp set in Creamy Caramel ink. I attached the stamped oval to the small stamped 2 1/2 x 2" piece with black brads. Attach this piece to the notepad to cover up the glued binding. I used sticky strip. Apply sticky strip to the whole back of the notepad and attach it to the large piece of Creamy Caramel cardstock. And that's it. Super quick and easy. Go on and make some. They make fabulous hostess and teacher gifts. You could make these for all different holidays too. I have another variation that's a little more involved to show you next time.


Monday, September 14, 2009

Come on in!

So, I thought I'd take you all on a tour of my stamp room. I did one a long time ago and a few things have changed since then. So I thought an update was in order.
This is the view from the doorway of my room. My room is small, measuring approx. 12x11. I use every square inch of the space I have. I've refined my storage and organization over the years to meet my needs. Let me take you through it.

This is a shot of my counter height work surface. I'm a standing up stamper. So this is my main work area. As you can see, I like all my tools close at hand. I keep my cardstock in 8 1/2x11" clear craft keepers. I also keep all my cardstock scraps in them as well. I have more cardstock on a shelf under my countertop that you can't see. It works very well for me. I keep my current favorite stamp sets right over my work surface too. My ink pads are on a little shelf unit that I re-purposed from a thrift store find years ago. My punches are on curtain rods I bought from Target. The drawers hold all my adhesives, miscellaneous tools, embellishments, business supplies, etc.

When I turn around from my counter top, this is my other work surface. I do my cutting, scoring and die cutting here. I also keep my stamp cleaner on this table. I have a rolling stool I can sit down on if I need to take a break from standing up. You can see it in the lower left corner of the picture. It was covered in red vinyl. And I re-covered it with the same fabric I made my ribbon board out of. Much prettier! And as an added bonus, I don't slide off of it LOL
A close up of my punch storage. I have alot of punches on each of those rods and they hold up very well!

On each side of the hanging wall unit, I have these magnetic strips from Ikea. They are supposed to be used for knife storage in the kitchen. I'm using them to store all my SU embellies. If I don't see them, I don't use them! Can't miss them now!

What stamp room would be complete without a pair of giant scissors? I got these at World Market and paid entirely way too much money for them. But it was a rare splurge for me, or maybe a moment of insanity....it's a fine line.

On the other side of the room I have more stamp storage. This is one of those cube units from Target. It's perfect for storing stamps. The little shelf unit on top is near and dear to my heart. My husband made is many years ago to hold baby food jars when my youngest was a baby......way too many years ago!! Who would have thought it would find a second life storing stamps?

The hutch holds mostly non-SU embellies. The jars are full of ribbons and buttons and other goodies left over from my scrapbooking days. They still make me happy when I look at them even though I rarely use them.

I hope you enjoyed touring my stamp room with me. This is the one room in the house that is all my own, and I have many hours of enjoyment here. I think I'll go create something!

Thursday, September 10, 2009

They're just like pototo chips!

These Tri-Shutter cards are addicting I tell ya! You can't make just one. This one is a full front Tri-Shutter, and I think I like this one a bit better. On the outside it looks like your typical card.

But once you open it up.....wowzers! Definitely not your typical card! And I think it's easier for the non-card maker to fold back up LOL

I used NO DSP on this card......that's right. I stamped the flowery paper using the Bella Toile background stamp. So pretty!! It's also hard to tell unless you enlarge the picture, but the Pretty In Pink layer on the card front is embossed with the small dots texture plate.
Here's all the details:
Certainly Celery (textured)
Rose Red
Pretty in Pink
Confetti White
Certainly Celery
Rose Red
Pretty in Pink
Bella Toile Background Stamp
Great Friend
Hope Happens
Small Dots Texture Plate
Silver Elastic Cord
Certainly Celery Grosgrain Ribbon
Eyelet Border Punch
Silver Brads
Green Circle Ice Brads
Rose Red Floral Fusion Flowers
Thanks for looking. I'd love to hear your comments.
Designed by Lena Graphics by Elie Lash