Tuesday, June 21, 2011

My Favorite Things

I have a few favorite things that I use in almost every project, layout and card I make! They are:

Inkssentials Glossy Accents
Tim Holtz Distress Ink in Walnut Stain
Tim Holtz Design Ruler
Sakura Quickie Glue Pen
Scor Pal Scor-Tape

Everyone already knows I love my Cricut, and I can't do a project without at least a few cut elements, but this time, I decided to show how using these simple products can make things easier, or prettier.

I started with some paper in my stash. I used two similar patters in different colors, to give a similar effect that can be seen in the photos. To separate and soften the line between the papers, I found a matching ribbon in my stash. I learned from the group that Scor-Tape is easier to use if you put the adhesive on your paper FIRST...then put the ribbon down on top of the adhesive. (It's really tough to keep your ribbon straight if you put the adhesive on the ribbon first...trust me!)

I cut my border from the Martha Steward Holiday Cakes cartridge. I used my Gypsy to weld several of the elements together to make a 12" border. I had to cut the border on my 12x24 mats in order to get a full 12 inch border. I attached the border to the top of each page, and then accented the little holes that didn't really cut out with an Inkssentials White Gel Pen.

The next step was just putting down my pictures on the page. I really like my photos to line up just right - so sometimes, I will use my Tim Holtz ruler to measure out the spaces between my pictures. The grid pattern on the ruler makes it really easy to measure the space between photos.

Another thing that I use a lot of is chipboard. The Grafix Medium Weight Chipboard cuts very nicely on the Cricut, without having to use the deep cut blade. I find that using the blade depth of 6, with high pressure, and two or three cuts, usually gets the cuts I need. I don't recommend cutting very intricate detail items on the chipboard though, unless you have a brand new mat, and a lot of patience! I cut the bracket pieces and the little arrows on the chipboard. The brackets are actually a frame on the Elegant Edges cartridge. I just it in half lengthwise, and used both halves on opposing pages! This part gets really messy, so I suggest scrap paper or some other tossable surface. I inked all over my chipboard pieces using my Distress Ink. In order to get complete coverage, I had to stamp multiple directions, on and off the surface. I didn't make it a solid brown, however, so that it still had a distressed look. Next, I covered each of the chipboard pieces with Glossy Accents. This part is really messy. I used a thin layer of product, making sure to cover all the way to the edges. This product is fairly thick, so it doesn't spread out, as long as the item being glossed stays flat! So, make sure to use enough to cover it entirely, making sure to pop any little air bubbles that may come up. The smaller arrows didn't have any problems. The large bracket pieces, however, curled up with the moisture from the medium as it dried. I used a pin to pop the bubbles, and hold the chipboard down while it was still fairly wet. There was still a fair amount of runoff as it dried because it curled out toward the edges. Allow the product to spread on it's own as it dries, to keep the surface smooth and glassy. If you want to add some distress to this, use your finger or craft blade to spread the product around after it has dried somewhat, but is still tacky.

As the chipboard pieces continued to dry, I began to distress my journal sheet. I used a piece of kraft-colored, lined cardstock to make the journal box. Using a punch, I created the torn notebook edge on top. I roughed up the punched area by gently pushing and folding them to make them uneven. Then, I very lightly crumbled the paper, but not enough to make any hard creases. Finally, I used my Distress Ink pad to stain the outside edges. I used quick, light motions to stain the edges of the paper. This speedy method frequently causes 'mistakes' as the pad slips around the sides, causing the ink to catch on the lightly creased pieces. This gives the paper more character!

After the chipboard embellishments were dry, the larger pieces were still curled up slightly. I used several pieces of Scor-Tape along the back of the chipboard, which helped the chipboard flatten out on the page. To dress these up even further, I used my white gel pen to make some detail that would continue the repeated patterns in the paper and embellishments. I used dots on two of the arrows, similar to the dots in the curved border, as well as the bottom patterned paper. On the brackets, I used some more dots at the points, but then also added some random stitching, to enhance the lines in the paper, ribbon and photos. The stitching is easy to create using the metal edge of the Tim Holtz ruler and a gel pen. The ruler keeps the lines straight, and the metal edge allows the pen to slide easily against the edge of the ruler.
A simple title, welded on my Gypsy, was the final touch, overlapping the embellished chipboard. Any time I have smaller letters to glue, the Sakura Quickie Glue Pen is my go-to adhesive. This pen allows me to get in all the tiny spaces, around all the curves, and even makes a perfect 'dot' of glue to put the dots for 'i' and 'j' letters on the page!

I have to give a shout-out to Pagemaps! I used a sketch from their monthly newsletter from May 2010 as the base for this layout. I hope you get a chance to try out a few of my favorite things!!

Friday, May 27, 2011

Simple and Elegant Congratulations Card

When you need a card in a hurry, the Cuttlebug is a great, easy way to put a simple and elegant card together.

I started with a standard white A2 card. I used the Cuttlebug Emboss A2 Musical Flourish folder to emboss the entire front of the card. Next, I found a paper print I liked from the Echo Park Splash 6x6 Paper Pad.  (I love the prints on these new paper pads - they're smaller, so they work well on cards!)

As soon as I saw the little whale print, I knew that was the one! I found two solid coordinating papers, and made two nested rectangles with a slim 1/8" border. I then nexted my whale paper within those rectangles, with the same slim border. I wanted this ribbon-like strip to stand out, so I attached it using 3D Foam dots.  To give it just a little more pizzazz, I added some Star Dust Stickles to three of the whale images...not too much, but enough to make them stand out!

Next, I pulled out my Gypsy, and created a title using the Quarter Note cartridge. I thought it would be fun to do a play on words with the print. The title "Whale Done" was cut on plain coordinating card stock. I attached it with my Sakura Quickie Glue Pen.

The result is a quick and easy card, that can be used for any job well done!

Thursday, April 28, 2011

Mother Daughter Layout

I am more of a scrapbooker than a stamper, but I wanted to take an opportunity to show that stamps aren't JUST for cards. You can use them in your scrapbook too!

Our family took a cruise two years ago, and we enjoy getting professional pictures taken by their staff. (This is typically some of the only photos of ME, since I'm usually the one with the camera!) As we're coming up to Mother's Day, I thought this picture of me with my daughter would be appropriate.

This is a large 8x10 picture, so I didn't want to overwhelm it with lots of fancy papers. I started with a plain white piece of cardstock, and dressed it up with Inkadinkadoo Sketchy Flourishes stamps. I used an embossing ink, like the Tim Holtz Distress Ink Pad and stamped the image on my page. Next, I sprinkled an ample amount of Ranger Super Fine Embossing Powder over the stamped image. Once the image is covered in powder, gently lift the paper, and lightly tap the paper to get rid of the excess powder. I have a tidy tray that works WONDERS in helping me collect all the excess powder, and funnels it back into the container!  Definitely a must have for anyone who uses glitter or embossing powder!  Finally, using a heat tool such as the Heat It Craft Tool, warm up the stamped and powdered image on the paper. It's important not to get too close to the paper with the heat gun or your paper will discolor! It's amazing to see that embossing powder turn into a shiny stamped image. Don't keep the heat gun on too long, or it will actually over melt the embossing powder. I did two images in black, and a third image with some red glittery embossing powder from my stash.

I actually did make a mistake - and had a fourth image embossed - but it didn't turn out at all...so instead of starting over, I artfully hid that corner with paper! I used a black Bazzill corner, and topped that with a piece of American Crafts Foil Cardstock.

To finish this off, I made a title on my Gypsy, using one of my new favorite fonts from Quarter Note. I welded the words Mother and Daughter, and cut each of these on more metallic cardstock in silver and red.  Welding is so easy with the Gypsy!  It was no problem to weld the word "Daughter" vertically instead of horizontally.  Also - this font makes the prettiest script I've ever used on my Cricut - and it cuts wonderfully!

I am really pleased with the way this simple layout turned out. Hopefully, my daughter will treasure it for a long time!

Thursday, April 14, 2011

New Two-Page Layout

I was lucky enough to attend a weekend crop last weekend, and I was able to get 19 pages done in 2 days!  Now that may not sound like much to some of you...but I put a lot of thought and effort into each of my pages, so I was pretty pleased with my totals.  Plus, I got lots of chatty time with my big sis, made some new friends, and got to have a bed to myself without DH and the fur-friends! 

Here is one of my two-page layouts, using my Cricut and my Gypsy.

The page base is a tan Bazzill cardstock, and I added some printed paper from my stash to fill the bottom of the page, and the top and center stripes. My photos were mounted on a coordinating sage cardstock.

After I laid out the photos, it was time to add the title and embellishments. On my Gypsy, I used the bracket from the Disney - Hannah Montana cartridge, and welded it to a simple rectangle from George & Basic Shapes, to give it a more solid shape. I cut two of these brackets in the same paper as the top stripe. Since the trees in the photographs was lacking most of its leaves, I selected one of the bare trees from Paper Doll Dress Up. I cut that in a chocolate brown, but it didn't stand out against my printed paper enough, so I cut a large circle from the same shade of paper as my base pages. The Peek-A-Boo title was welded from the Quarter Note cartridge. If you are looking for a nice script font that welds together easily, this is the cartridge to do it! I used my Zig Glue pen to glue the title to the page. I added a journaling box to balance out the layout, and used the bracket cutouts to highlight both the title and the journaling box.  I used some neutral buttons, held down with glue dots, to give some dimension to the second page.

To make the brackets appear as if they were sewn on the page, I used a brown Sharpie to draw stitch marks on each of them. I also outlined each of the brackets with the same marker, after they were adhered to the page. Finally, to bring more continuity to the page, I wanted to place a dotted line along the sides and bottom of each page. I'm a little bit of a perfectionist, and I didn't want my dots to appear too haphazard, so I pulled out my Tim Holtz ruler, which has awesome holes evenly spaced all the way down the ruler. Using a paper piercer, I lightly pierced every other hole all the way around the pages. Then I went back afterwards with marker and placed a dot on each of my piercing marks.  It was tedious work, but I think it really made the pages look more interesting!

Cricut Cartridges:
Paper Doll Dress Up
George & Basic Shapes
Disney - Hannah Montana
Quarter Note

Friday, March 25, 2011

Cutters Creek Design Team Spring Blog Hop

Welcome to the Cutters Creek Spring Blog Hop! All of our designers have created some wonderful Spring projects featuring products that you can purchase at the Cutters Creek Store! If you would like to start from the beginning head on over the the Cutters Creek Design Team Blog. Each blog along the way will have a link to the next blog in the chain. Don't forget to make sure you are following each of our personal blogs and leaving comments along the way to enter to win a box full of CHA Swag!!!!

You should have just hopped here from Lori's Blog.

My project is a simple spring-theme card, and what better says "Spring" than the Easter Bunny?!

The base of my card is a standard white cardstock, cut at 10" x 6 1/2".  I put a simple fold down the center with my Scor Pal.  I cut a piece of grass-looking paper at 4 1/2" x 6", leaving a quarter inch of white around the outside. 

The title was cut from my Cricut, using a Creative Memories cartridge.  The paper used was from a piece of paper that I found rather ugly as a full size print of purple, pink & green pansies.  However, when cut into the title, the print actually is not quite as obnoxious, and gives the title a soft, colorful feeling!  I adhered the title to a piece of coordinating, textured cardstock from my stash.  Although I used a different brand, the corners can be embellished with any of the We R Memory Keepers Crop-A-Dile Corner Chompers.  I adhered the letters to the cardstock using my favorite glue pen - the Sakura Quickie Glue Roller Pen.

I wanted it to look like my bunny was sitting on a field of flowers.  I happened to have a stamp in my stash that looks like mounds of snow.  I stamped that several times on the bottom of my green paper, using my Memento Tuxedo Black Ink Pad.  On all of the black lines, I dabbed on my Flower Soft Glue, making sure to fill in some extra spaces.  I immediately sprinkled on some Flower Soft Spring Mix, and pressed it into the glue lightly to make sure I had plenty sticking.  Then I tipped my card up and tapped off the excess, saving all the Flower Soft to put back in the pot.  I set the card base off to the side to allow it to dry thoroughly.

Next, I cut my bunny and basket from the Cricut Paper Dolls for Everyday cartridge.  I sized these items on a single mat on my Gypsy, which reduced the number of times I had to put the mat in for cutting, and ensured that everything was sized proportionately.  I wanted to have some of the cut lines in the body and face of the bunny stand out a little more, so I accented them using my Copic Sketch Marker E00 Skin White.  I colored the center of the ears with R20 Blush.  Once again, with my Flower Soft Glue, I dabbed glue all over my bunny, avoiding all the lines I had just highlighted with my Copics.  I sprinkled Flower Soft Diamond Range Polar White all over the bunny, again, pressing it down into the glue lightly, to make sure he was all filled in, fluffy and sparkly!  Since there was a lot of glue used, I had to let him sit several hours to make sure everything dried up nicely before I tried to finish my card!
Of course, the bunny needs to "HOP" off the card, so I adhered him using Glue Dots 1/2 Inch Pop Up Dots.  The basket was also popped up off the page, so that I could add tiny eggs inside of it.  The eggs are actually Twinkly Jewels Birthday Mix, each adhered by a single spot of Glossy Accents.

I hope you enjoyed my little taste of spring!  I would love to hear your thoughts of this card, and let me know what kinds of things remind YOU of spring!

After you leave your comment, hop on back to the Design Team Blog and let us know how much you enjoyed the blog hop!

Here's a list, if you get lost along the way:
Cutters Creek Design Team Blog - http://cutterscreekdesignteam.blogspot.com/
Mandie's Blog - http://mandiesscrappin.blogspot.com/
Kim's Blog - http://kreativekim.blogspot.com/
Mindy's Blog - http://www.scrappyandpiggy.blogspot.com/
Laura's Blog - http://scrapaddict4life.blogspot.com/
Melissa's Blog - http://www.ourmadhouseof4.blogspot.com/
Lori's Blog - http://savingmine.blogspot.com/
Vicki's Blog - http://scrappyleopard.blogspot.com/

Friday, January 7, 2011

Thank You Card

Here is a simple but pretty card made with my Cricut and a few simple embellishments. I used some coordinating papers from my stash to make the card & envelope. When making cards with Wild Card, I always make my envelope first and set my Cricut to the 'Fit to page' option. If you watch the display screen as it calculates the correct size, you will see what size to make your cards to coordinate the remainder of your cuts for the card. In my case, the largest size envelope I could make on a full sheet of paper was 6.10. When I started cutting the card base, I turned off the 'Fit to Page' option and set the dial size to that size. I cut the liner and the words in the small window at that same size. Many people get frustrated with the phrases on this cartridge because they often get confused with the odd sizing. Just keep the dial size set the same as your card base and you'll be ok!

My paper didn't have enough sparkle, so I took out my Frosted Lace Stickles and accented all the little dots on my paper. While that was drying, I cut a few snowflakes from the Gypsy Wanderings cartridge. I cut the base of each snowflake from solid red cardstock and the tops from vellum. I used a Twinkle Jewel in the center of each snowflake. I find that these stick best with either a Mini Glue Dot or Glossy Accents.

Now I have a nice Thank You card for a very special holiday gift!

Monday, December 13, 2010

Blog Hop Winner Announcement

What a wonderful weekend!!  We had so much fun with the blog hop - did you?  The Cutters Creek Design Team made some unbelievable projects.  I hope you were inspired by one or several of these projects.

So - remember the prize I was giving away??
This is an awesome set of markers - I am jealous!

So, there were a couple of people that commented twice, and one comment that was deleted, so the overall number of people to choose from was 68.

True Random Number Generator

Min: 1
Max: 68
Result: 32

Powered by RANDOM.ORG

And the winner is...........................

Kim said...
Receiving my Cricut Expression last year for Christmas!! From my HUBBY! I was THRILLED! and a bit SHOCKED!!

Thanks for the chance to win. Have a GREAT Day,

Me-Ma Kim

December 11, 2010 1:06 PM

Congratulations Me-Ma Kim!!  Please send me an e-mail with your contact information, so I can get your prize shipment coordinated.  If I don't hear from Me-Ma Kim within 48 hours, a new winner will be selected.

Thanks all for participating!!