Thursday, December 31, 2009

Welcome, 2010!

The kiddos are set to ring in the new year with their silly, sparkly 2010 glasses. Made with pipe cleaners - easy peasy!

Hope you and your family have a fabulous New Year's Eve, also!

Thanks to Make and Takes for the idea.

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Digging Myself Out

Decided to clean out and reorganize the attic. Be back in a few days. Happy New Year!

P.S. Like my new blog header? I do. :)

Friday, December 25, 2009

The Christmas Spirit

Children's crafts are the best. Merry Christmas!

Note: If the screen settings don't allow the video to play at its intended width, please click here to see it as it should be.

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Craft Fail: Magician's Cape

Craft Fail: A Magician's Cape. a.k.a. A Christmas Present Gone Wrong

Brighton the Magnificent has taken an interest in magic. For Christmas, Aunt and Santa are bringing him new magic tricks. So that Brighton the Magnificent looks magnificent, I purchased a top hat and am sewing this spiffy magician's cape, bow tie, and cummerbund - all to be wrapped and ready on Christmas morning. A cape. Easy enough, right? Note the cape's clasp, situated comfortably just below the bow tie.

Here's my progress with the cape. Such smooth, silky satin and evenly rounded curves!

Now, here's the problem. This is the neckline. For perspective, I've set it beside a regular size orange - not even a big one. An orange, you say? I know, work with me here. It's almost 2 a.m. I'd try to fit it around a baby doll but, as the mother two boys and zero girls, we don't have any dolls in the house. Zero dolls, lots of oranges. So an orange it is.

That cape barely wraps halfway around that orange. Think it's going to fit around my child? Nope, me neither.

This is the collar that's supposed to attach to the cape. I'm 99.9% sure I cut the collar right. It looks large enough to fit around the neck of a five-year-old. But - um - it's never going to work with that cape. For the non-sewers out there (of which I now include myself), the black U-shape and the red U-shape are supposed to be the same size.

Do I go to the fabric store tomorrow...Christmas Eve...and stay up all night to re-make the cape? Uggh!

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Shower Invitation and Recipe Box

I've got a lot of pictures for you today. :) We're still in full swing with Christmas preparations, but I'm taking a break to post some projects that fit today's Moxie Fab World Tuesday Trigger. The challenge: using the colors black, white, and green.

Last year my mom hosted a bridal shower for the daughter of one of her friends. I, as family cardmaker, got to help with the invitations. All of the photos are from last year, long before I started blogging, so please be kind about my bad lighting and busy backgrounds. :)

Guests were asked to bring a recipe to share with the bride-to-be. Above, you'll see the enclosure - a prepared recipe card with a note explaining the request. See that paper clip with black gingham and green ribbons tied to it - love it!

Here's the recipe box I made for the bride. In choosing the color palette for the shower, I snooped at the bride-to-be's gift registry. She asked for appliances in stainless steel, gadgets in black, and linens in green. Thus the black, white, and green palette. Clever, eh?

Here's the inside of the recipe box. Hopefully it should blend in nicely with the rest of the kitchen.

The recipe dividers.

Please ignore the almonds! I told you I was helping my mom. I made samples, photographed them, and emailed them for her approval. My mom used these tags and cellophane bags to wrap the party favors, but I assure you she used something much cuter than natural almonds! This was a mock-up and almonds were all I had to work with at the time.

I drafted three sample invitations for my mother. I mocked up the layouts and emailed them over for her selection. My mom chose to use the foldover style pictured at the top of the post because of the enclosure, but here are the other two designs I made. This square one has received over 4000 hits on my Splitcoast Stampers gallery - whoa!

This was my favorite. I think because it's a less traditional shape for a card. I think it was also the most cost effective because it used so much less ribbon. Go figure that we'd opt for the most expensive design instead - LOL.

Last but not least, a friend of mine graciously donated piles of paper with patterns in black, white, and green to use in conjunction with the shower decorations. Some of the papers she donated also included a lot of sky blue - beautiful, but didn't work with the decor. So I used those leftover blue patterned papers to make a thank you card for her (above) ...

and a stack of blank cards in these two patterns (above) as a thank you gift.

The supply list for all of these projects is ginormous. I posted everything in my SCS gallery last year along with supplies. Please click on each project's link to read the details. see below

Now, back to wrapping Christmas presents!

Foldover invitation with black flower.
Inside of invitation and insert.
Recipe box: here and here and here.
Favor tag.
Draft of square invitation.
Draft of narrow invitation.
Friend card.
Other two cards made using blue patterned paper.

Monday, December 21, 2009

Christmas Notepads and Pencils

Here are the Christmas gifts for our neighbors. We covered notepads with Christmas-y paper, personalized them with each child's name or initials (if the name didn't fit), and added fun jingle bell pencils, made by my boys. We made notepads in red...

and in blue.

Our family receives so many wonderful sweets this time of year, I wanted to make something sugar-free and zero-calorie. I also wanted to involve my children in the gift making process. The bells came as ornaments, with strings for hanging, so Lincoln was in charge of ripping off the strings. We play to our strengths around here - if ripping things apart is your forte, that's your job!

Brighton wrapped pipe cleaners around pencils to make the pencil toppers. My boys LOVE the jingly pencils!

For the babies who are too young for pointy pencils, we bought plush snowmen and added a tag personalized with the baby's initial. Here you see a big brother, little brother gift combo.

We ran out of notepads, so we're giving some families bouquets of jingle pencils and jars of homemade apple cider.

I think my boys' favorite part is delivering the presents. They have to take turns ringing doorbells, deciding who hops out of the car first - all of that. I'm glad they're joyful givers. :)

Hope you're enjoying your holidays! I know we're ready to wind down and start focusing on family time. Take care and merry Christmas!

Friday, December 18, 2009

Fill This Day with Joy

The Christmas cards and done and in the mail. Hooray! Here's what we made this year. It's an oh-so-close knock-off of this beautiful card by Lisa Johnson. Didn't Brighton do a great job with all those red ribbons? He started to fizzle out after about 2/3 of the stack, but he pushed through and boy is he proud of himself!

We're working on neighbor gifts right now. Here's a hint - LOTS of bells jingling in our house today. :) I bet the neighbors are going to LOVE us for giving their children noisy presents - lol.

Paper: Stampin' Up! (Kraft, Always Artichoke, Whisper White).
Stamps: Papertrey Ink (Rustic Branches, Everyday Button Bits), Stampin' Up! (Polka Dot).
Ink: Stampin' Up! (Real Red, White Craft, Chocolate Chip, Kiwi Kiss).
Ribbon: Papertrey Ink (Pure Poppy).
Other: silver brads, hemp twine.

Monday, December 14, 2009

Warmest Birthday Wishes

This has to be one of my favorite cards I have ever made. I love all things felt and those fuzzy mittens turned out really cute, didn't they? I made sure to save the pattern I drew so I can make more of these cheery little mittens later on.

The red felt is glittered - hence the little speckles in the photo.

Happy birthday (tomorrow) to my stepmother! {big hugs from all of us}

Paper: Stampin' Up! (Bashful Blue), Bazzil Basics (white).
Ribbon: Papertrey Ink (Pure Poppy).
Button: Papertrey Ink (Spring Rain).
Other: Stampin' Up! (linen thread), red and light blue felt, white embroidery floss, computer fonts (Honey Script, Times New Roman).

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Peace and Joy

We're still making piles of Christmas cards around here, but I took a break from mass-production to make some clean and simple cards with these fuzzy flocked stickers. Some days you just need a change of pace, you know? Hope you enjoyed a peacful Sunday in your neck of the woods. :)

Paper: Bazzil Basics (caramel and green), not sure where I got the ivory.
Stickers: K&Company (BW Evergreen Flocked Stickers).
Punch: Stampin' Up! (scallop border, corner rounder).
Ribbon: Offray (cream 3).

Friday, December 11, 2009

Busy Little Elves

Our household is in Christmas card mode right now. I say "household" because (a) it overtakes half the kitchen, and (b) everybody pitches in. Ben cuts paper. I stamp and tie ribbons and all of those things. Brighton helped this year by threading ribbon and adhering the dimensionals (foam adhesive). Even my friend Heather came over last night to lend emotional support while we worked. :)

We're making almost six dozen cards this year. Phew! But I guess we're blessed to say we count that many families among our friends and loved ones.

Moxie Fab Winner

Guess what! This card was one of the challenge winners over at Moxie Fab World. I'm flattered. The other winners obviously took a long time creating each of their cards - I'm not quite sure how my card with rub-ons snuck in, but I'm sure happy about it. Plus Moxie Fab contests have prizes - tee hee! Can't wait to see what lands in my mailbox.

That's my happy news for the day. :) Hope you've got something good goin' on too!

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Coal Again?

For my slightly-snarky, cat-loving mother-in-law. :) I'm sure she'd love any card with the ever-mischievous Fluffles on it.

ETA - the newest Moxie Fab challenge is up. This challenge theme is all creatures great and small. I have a few Christmas cardinals waiting around begging to get used! However the timing of posting this Fluffles card worked out so well, he's getting entered too. :)

Here's a picture of our own furry friend and his first bought of mischief. Believe me, there have been many! We have the vet bills to prove it. My husband and I had just had a new house built. We hadn't lived there a full week when our pug, Chester, chewed open a ball point pen. Argh! Because he held the pen with his paws while chewing on it, Chester got black ink all over himself. As soon as he got caught, he knew he was in trouble and took off running! Those little paws hold a lot of ink! We had black paw prints stamped all down our hallway and into our living room. Our brand new carpet. *sigh* We now love ChemDry - LOL.

What about you? Any funny or mischievous pet stories to share? I'd love to hear about them. :)

Paper: Stampin' Up! (Creamy Caramel, Naturals Ivory). Making Memories (FA LA LA collection). Bazzil Basics (olive and deep red cardstock).
Stamp: Fluffles the Cat Stocking
Ink: Black StazOn, watercolor pencils .
Other: Stampin' Up! (linen thread). Making Memories (holly berry brad and leaves).

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Leftover Rub-ons

What do you do with all those leftover rub-ons? Group them together to make a focal image. Clever, eh?

See that supply list? Can't get much shorter than that!

Paper: Bazzil Basics (white).
Rub-ons: KI Memories (Good Tidings).
Other: Stampin' Up! (corner rounder).

Monday, December 7, 2009

Christmas Tree

I love this sweet little Christmas tree. It's one of the reasons I bought the pack of rob-ons in the first place.

If you look closely in the bottom corner of the photo, you'll see I finally learned how to add my name and blog address. Yes, I have stepped into the 21st century. :) It makes me realize, though, I really need a better (shorter) blog address. Hmmm...what to do about that?

Paper: Stampin' Up! (Whisper White, Kiwi Kiss). I don't know where I got that yellow - sorry.
Rub-on: KI Memories (Good Tidings).
Other: ribbon, corner rounder.

Saturday, December 5, 2009

Top o' the List

Hey, guess what! Go HERE and see whose card is featured smack dab at the top of the list. Not that they were posted in any particular order, but still. :) This was my first time playing along with a Cards challenge. I'm flattered.

Paper: Stampin' Up! (kraft), Bazzill Basics (white).
Ribbon: Stampin' Up! (red gingham, linen thread).
Other: buttons, red thread.

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Lincoln's Room

Ben gets the credit for Lincoln's room. See those stripes on the walls? Hottie Hubs taped and painted all 124 of them (more about that towards the bottom of the post).

Since I couldn't stand back far enough to get a full room shot, I tried to overlap portions of the photos to walk you around the room, starting with the top picture.

We painted Lincoln's initials and found a cool model prop plane to hang near the crib.

You can see that Lincoln has quite a few airplanes in his room. Does that make them the theme? I'd say his room is decorated more around a color scheme. Anyway, I like it. :)

Notice the lack of changing pad and basket-o'-diapers on that dresser? Ahh, makes me happy every day!

Here's the fun wall...

Magnetic chalk boards for drawing and sticking stuff to it, cork boards and peg boards to display all his other favorite finds.

To make the wall look balanced, we had to hang the chalkboards at a certain height. So I bought these short bookshelves for the boys to stand on so they can reach the top halves of the chalkboards.

This is one of Lincoln's favorite things in the room - his dinosaur bank. He loves to put coins in the dinosaur's mouth and watch them slide down into the stomach. I think there are a few Lite Brite pegs, buttons, and Battleship pieces in there, too. :)

It took Ben a LONG time to paint all of the stripes. (They were a lot of work!) He started losing steam mid-project, so I decided to give him a pep talk to cheer him on. :) When you look at the side of the chalkboards, you can see that Ben (1) painted the walls light blue, (2) added the white stripes, then (3) added all the thin dark blue stripes. The dark blue stripes you see are the paint tape he used to outline where he wanted the dark stripes.

I'm not sure that you get the effect in the photos, but there really is enough white in the room to balance all of the color - the closet, the door to the hallway, the ceiling, etc. It's just that a pair of bi-fold doors don't make for a very interesting photograph. :)

I'm glad the room is done ... I know Ben is! Here's to hoping Lincoln will love his room for a long time, too!

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Brighton's Room

Ta-da! Okay so really we finished Brighton's room earlier this summer and I'm just now getting around to posting pictures.

Here are some of my favorite things in the room:
  • The felt crocodile that's longer than Brighton is tall.
  • The wall bookshelf keeping Brighton's favorite bedtime reads within easy reach.
  • The orange monkey jumping over the top bunk.

  • The wicker basket in the shape of an elephant. If you look really closely, you see the little trunk and tail in that picture.

  • That little orange camping lantern. It's a regular light bulb-style lamp, just designed perfectly for a safari-style room.
  • The TENT! Only the corner peeks out in this photo. Scroll on up to the top of the post for a better view. Sometimes Brighton keeps his kid table in the tent and uses it for his art space. Other times we move the table into the hall and Brighton piles pillows on the floor so he can read in his tent, or sometimes even sleep there.
  • Corkboard space for Brighton to display all of his cute art projects.
  • I made those animal prints using prepainted wooden cutouts from JoAnn's. I just mounted them onto scrapbook paper and framed them - easy peasy.
  • The baskets under the dresser are labeled for Brighton's art supplies.

Last but not least, here's a closer look at the awning. I found these grass placemats at Pier 1 Imports for $2 each. I tied them together with twine and my hottie hubs built a frame to hold them. I love the pop of color and texture. The total cost of supplies and hardware was less than $25 - can't beat that!

We found the bedding, wall decals, tent, lamp, and crocodile at Pottery Barn Kids. I like how everything works together, but isn't completely matchy-matchy. Hopefully Brighton will like it for a long time, too. :)