Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Cuts are Cooler with Color

Lincoln was over at a friend's house and, as the mother said, "Lincoln battled the back patio steps. And the steps won." He has a good set of scratches on his forehead and a scab that covers the distance between his lip and his nose.

My boys look for any excuse to wear a band-aid. My rule is no blood, no band-aid. But now that Lincoln has a legitimate reason to wear one, the fact that wearing a band-aid above his lip makes him look like he has a moustache makes it even better.

The bandages on the front of the card are permanently adhered as decoration. The bandages on the inside still have covers over the adhesive and are simply tucked into the pocket, ready for little hands to use them.

While this may not be the most attractive card I've ever made, its recipient loves it. And that's what matters most. :) Happy healing, my little one!

Supplies. Cardstock: Bazzill Basics (white), Stampin' Up! (Tempting Turquoise). Ribbon: Stampin' Up!. Brads: Stampin' Up!. Punch: Corner rounder by Stampin' Up!. Other: paper piercer, adhesive bandages, computer font.

Monday, September 28, 2009

Appliqued Crowns

Still no camera, so another oldie but goody. :) I volunteered to help make crowns for the craft sale at Lincoln's soon-to-be school. I let the ladies know this was my first attempt ever at appliqueing, so I think they gave me all of the odd colored crowns and scraps just in case - LOL. Admittedly it doesn't get much easier than felt, but I'm really pleased with how they turned out!

Apart from that cute little owl, I designed all the appliques myself! (The owl is from a bookmark at the super cute, warm, and fuzzy Wee Folk Art.) I'm really happy with what I came up, especially considering the supplies I was given.

The "jewels" on the green crown are made from glittered felt, which doesn't show up in the photo but definitely sparkles - as jewels should - in real life.

The more experienced seamstresses will work their magic to finish the crowns (I just decorated the front panels), which will be placed for sale at our farmer's market booth or the fall Harvest Faire.

Brighton's already asked me to make a lightning bolt crown for him to keep. I may even make him a matching cape to boot. Wouldn't that be a fun dress-up combo?

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Cupcake Gift Card Holder

Yesterday the boys and I enjoyed a birthday party hosted by a good momma for her little cupcake. We mommies love to give our kiddos cute little nicknames, don't we? Though this photo is of a gift card holder I made a while ago for my mother-in-law, I've got cupcake on the brain and thought I'd share.

Isn't that little felt cupcake adorable? If you saw it in person, I promise you'd run your finger over its cute pink fuzziness! It's from Martha Stewart Crafts and makes the cutest little birthday cards and tags.

On the outside, this looks like a card. I've decorated card fronts similar to this. But this little gem is actually a gift card holder. I learned how to make it from Stampin' Up! demonstrator Amy Hatch. In case you'd like to make one, I searched YouTube to find a video tutorial to share here. Dawn Griffith posts measurements and supplies on the screen as she goes, so if the music's not your style, I'm pretty sure you can mute the volume and still follow along. I don't have the window punch she uses (the long skinny one), so I improvised with a square punch. You could also use an X-acto knife. I know I'll be making more of this come Christmastime! With a Christmas theme, of course. :)

Supplies. Cardstock: Bazzill Basics aqua ("aqua" isn't the correct name, but that's the best name I can think to give it). SU! Whisper White. Stamp: SU! Sweet Little Sentiments. Ink: SU! Baha Breeze. Ribbon: SU! Baha Breeze and Regal Rose. Punch: SU! curly label. Embellishment: Martha Stewart felt cupcake.

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Trendy Trees Card

Autumn officially began this past week and the leaves here are starting to change to their beautiful autumn colors. My camera is still traveling the world alongside my husband, so I can only post a card I made and photographed a while ago. Those rusty orange leaves are perfect for a card this time of year!

Sometimes I struggle with how to make small stamps (or any small decorative element) look well-proportioned on a full-size card. I tend to use them in multiples, and still either frame them or mat them to fill out the space.

Supplies. All supplies from Stampin' Up! Stamps: Trendy Trees. Cardstock: Kraft, Not Quite Navy, Chocolate Chip, Kiwi Kiss, Naturals Ivory. Ink: Chocolate Chip, Kiwi Kiss, Pumpkin Pie. Ribbon: Kiwi Kiss. Other: paper piercer, Coluzzle, staple. I also used a Stamp-a-ma-jig to line up the tree tops with the trunks (one of the most helpful tools ever!).

Friday, September 25, 2009

Amy Butler Birdie Sling

Naturally I decided to kick off my craft blog just as my hottie hubs headed out of the country with our camera. Since I can't take a picture of what I've been working on lately, I thought I'd post some old faves.

A friend watched our boys earlier this year while Ben and I snuck away for a night to celebrate our anniversary. Since our anniversary was in April, I thought I'd make her a big ol' bag ('cause we mommies need those!) in some lighter spring colors.

I'm always a bit nervous making something that someone might wear, carry, or otherwise display becaues I don't want them to feel obligated to use it if it's not their style. Anyone else ever worry about that? But since I knew this friend is an Amy Butler lover, I used only Amy Butler supplies - pattern and fabric - and crossed my fingers!

This was my first time using an Amy Butler pattern and I have to say that I loved her instructions. This wasn't a totally beginner pattern, yet everything was explained in very basic terms. (Though I still tripped up on that top band - had to take that sucker off two times before I finally got it right!)

Here's a shot of the interior. Thanks for looking!

Monday, September 21, 2009

Make Today a Play Day!

Another card for my super cute kiddo. I think he's my favorite person to make cards for. He loves anything I make for him, regardless of how it looks, so there's no stress to impress - I just relax and really get to enjoy creating for my son.

I bought several items from this cute monster line by Daisy Bucket Designs to make cards for my boys. Monsters are right up their alley!

I had fun dusting off my watercolor crayons and Aqua Painter for this one. As for the polka dots, since this critter is just as round as can be, polka dots seemed like the way to go.

Supplies. Cardstock: Stampin’ Up! (Basic Black, Orchid Opulence, Perfect Plum). Patterned paper: Bo Bunny (Wasabi Dot). Decorative scissors: Provo Craft. Circle punches: EK Success (1” and ¾”). Stamp: Daisy Bucket Designs (Play Day). Ink: Staz On (black). Watercolor crayons: Stampin’ Up!. Other: watercolor paper (made by Arches).

Friday, September 18, 2009

Birthday Bicycle Card

I made this card for a dear friend of mine who's been sending not-so-subtle blog hints about her wish for a new bicycle. My friend and I have been running together for several months. I think our running days are nearing an end and we're ready to move on to something else. I don't have a bicycle either...the kids always seem to need a new one more than me - LOL...but someday we mommies will both have bikes and we'll have to go for a belated birthday ride.

Supplies. Inspired by this beautiful card. Cardstock: SU! Groovy Guava and Whisper White, PTI Aqua Mist and Ocean Tides. Stamps: SU! Polka Dot background, PTI Everyday Button Bits. Ink: SU! Soft Sky, StazOn black, SU! Groovy Guava. Ribbon: SU! Groovy Guava, American Crafts aqua. Buttons: PTI. Other: SU! scalloped border punch, SU! corner rounder.

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Too Easy Tutu

I made these little tutus for my niece. She's celebrating her second birthday and should be coming up on that too-cute dress-like-a-fairy-princess imaginative play age. At least that's what I'm hoping - ha!

My sewing machine and I have been having fits lately, even after a trip to the repair shop. I wasn't about to try sewing tulle until we were on better terms. Thankfully I found patterns for no sew tutus here and here.

Since I only have sons, I have to channel my girly craft energy into other people's daughters. Their gifts are almost always a first run, for better or worse, and usually involve a learning curve. Thankfully this project was easy, but I did store a few tid-bits to remember the next time around.

I used three yards of tulle per tutu (2 yards of regular tulle, 1 yard of glittered tulle). Remember, my project was for a two-year-old; an older child's tutu would need more fabric. Here I tied three layers of tulle per knot (2 pieces of regular with 1 piece of glittered on top). The glittered tulle was stiffer compared to the plain colors and made for larger knots that I anticipated. I would buy more yardage the next time around so I could squish the knots closer together.

In addition to the tulle, JoAnn's also carries paper mache wands, so I bought two and painted them to mach. While the paint was wet, I added ultra-fine glitter to the star. I then tied a few strands of ribbon and tulle just underneath the stars to make pretty streamers. (They're hard to see in the photos, but show up better on the black/purple tutu.)

Since my niece lives across the country, I had to try fitting these on my own two-year-old son. The poor boy ran away screaming. But as soon as my older son challenged him to a fairy wand sword fight, all was well again. (Too bad I had to confiscate the wands so they didn't break - they were meant as part of the gift, after all. LOL.)

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Teacher Gift Basket

Today's post is more assembled than made, but the gesture is still there. The felt basket is from the $1 spot at Target - love that place! I fancied it up with crinkly paper, added a few teacher-friendly gifts, and voila! Easy peasy.

I gave this basket to Brighton's new kindergarten teacher and assembled an identical basket for the other afternoon kindergarten teacher. The other teacher is doing a great job, but my heart goes out to her because she's a young teacher at a new school and this is her first year teaching kindergarten. Not only does she have a million things to do to get her classroom up and running, last week's parent hallway gossip was "She looks so young!" and "I hope she has some experience."

I remember way back when the PTA threw a welcome back luncheon for the school faculty during preplanning. I stood corned by all four PTA officers saying, "Oh my goodness, you look so young! I can't believe you're old enough to be a teacher. I would have guessed you're still a student." I was excited about finally having my very own class - but also nervous - and those ladies did not help. So I guess the second gift basket was my attempt to not be one of those ladies. And hey, what teacher couldn't use a little more love?

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

The Reason Why

Welcome to my craft blog! Most of the things I make are gifts for other people - those closest to my heart and most important in my life. I enjoy making things for them. It's both a fun challenge for me to try something new and a heartwarming experience to devote a portion of my time and resources towards someone I care about (who in most cases has performed many acts of kindness for me as well). I want to remember both what I make and the person I make it for. That's one of the reasons why I started this blog.

Of course there are times when I create something just to make myself happy. That's a good thing, too. :) And though I get to keep the item to enjoy, there's still a part of me that has never outgrown the "Hey, Mom, look what I made!" enthusiasm of my childhood. I've stumbled through many-a-project trying to teach myself a new skill or technique. I've ripped out seam after seam, scrapped countless card fronts, and laughed at all kinds of "craft fails". So when things do go well, sometimes I'm just so dang proud of myself that I want to show someone else! And believe me ladies - if I can make something, you can too!

With that thought, I'm happy to share my work and I'll try my best to list any supplies, tutorials, or templates used. Feel free to copy anything for your own personal use. And if you do use any of my work as inspiration, please drop me a line! I'd love to see your handiwork!

Now on to the card, a project worthy of my first post because of its recipient. My son is starting kindergarten this week (sniffle, sniffle), so I made him a little happy for his first day. This Shel Silverstein poem is included in a book my mother gave me when I younger, so is it any wonder I'm feeling a bit sentimental? Good luck, my little one! I love you.

Supplies. Cardstock: Bazzill Basics. Patterned paper: Bo Bunny (green polka dot), Daisy Bucket Designs (stripes). Rub-on sentiment: Daisy Bucket Designs. Die cut stickers: Stampin' Up!. Spiral punch: Stampin' Up!. Other: staples.