Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Christmas Ornaments

I had some help with these from my 6 year old - what a fun way to spend an evening! I apologize for the photography - still haven't figured out how to photograph these! I wish I were a better photographer!!!

This one uses paper from Hot Off the Press, rubons from EK, and glitter.

Paper from Hot Off the Press, outline stickers from Making Memories, and glitter.

Poinsettias from Hot Off the Press, glittered brads from Making Memories, and glitter.

Paper from Making Memories (really old paper!) and rubons from Making Memories (also really old!). Also, although I really love the way this looks with the little paper spirals, please be forewarned that this takes FOREVER! That's about 3/4 of a piece of 12x12 paper and took well over an hour (ok, so I was watching Dancing With the Stars too - yay Helio! Is he adorable or what!). I'll be sticking with larger strips from now on! Although I'm thinking this would look fantastic done up with some of the glittery Bazzill...hmmm.

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

The Puzzle Results!

I've been tweaking for days but finally have the pictures to show you! I ended up with 10 little projects out of my simple $1 quilt puzzle I picked up at Michael's (it's from Darice, if you're interested in that information). While there were a couple of pieces that just didn't turn out how I planned, I simply turned those into magnets - after all, you can never have too many of those! All in all, I made 2 magnets, 2 bracelets, a frame, 2 pairs of earrings, a Christmas pin, and a paintbrush rest (lol, yes, see the story below the picture!). I also went back to Michael's and picked up another handful of these as well as dug out some other wood pieces I've had around for years for more play! It's a tiny size to work with, but the possibilities (and scraps to use!) are endless - I haven't even pulled out my stamps yet!

So here again is the original...

And here's the finished 10 projects!

As you can see, I'm still in a pretty big Basic Grey Blush kick, but mainly because I pulled everything for this project out of my scraps (lol, see my post of my organizer spinner to see one of the reasons I have lots of small scraps from this line right now!). I tried to grab a few things that had been sitting around gathering dust for years too, just because!

Starting with the magnets. The pink and brown one is BG paper, covered by a clear acrylic faceted "gem" from the Tulip (think fabric paint) line a few years ago (not sure if they even still make them but there were a whole bunch of different shapes and sizes) and "grouted" with dimensional paint from PSX. Used an acrylic butterfly from the same line on the other magnet, but used glitter underneath. This looks really neat...up really close. The paper was from an old Making Memories line. Both the magnets were originally intended to go into necklaces, but I just didn't like them well enough to bother. Attach the magnets with E6000 adhesive. I promise they'll never move again! Another note on working with magnets (I used the little button type) - always test your magnets before you adhere (especially with E6000) to be sure you know which side to adhere to and which side will be stuck to your refrigerator or wherever you put it!
For the snowflake ornament. I used the blue diamond pieces as is! I glued together 8 of them - they didn't fit EXACTLY in the middle but that gets covered) and then edged the whole thing in silver Stickles. I then embossed a technique tile from Technique Tuesday in silver and glued it on top and drilled a small hole to thread some metallic string for hanging.

On the earrings. The red and yellow ones I also left their original color. They were just scattered on my table and the color combination just looked kind of fun so I went with it! I drilled through from top to bottom (more on the drill later - I used it on almost every project!) then strung them like beads. The diamond ones were covered in paper from 7gypsies and while I liked the look, I just thought they needed I dug through my embellishment drawers and came to the drawer I had full of those little spiral clips that were "in" years ago...I have a LOT, lol! These little ones added just the touch I wanted. I then drilled through the tops and created the earrings using these like beads again. I didn't have jump rings big enough handy so I grabbed some of the bigger spiral clips and they were the perfect substitute!

The pin changed forms many times. I had painted the square black because I meant to stamp on it with an interference ink. But I was being lazy and didn't feel like hunting down a stamp (again, this is a TINY size) so I dug through my scraps and found this paper from Prima. After I Mod Podged it on, I added some gold glaze over the top and sides and loved the look. Again, it needed something. I was putting away groceries and came across a bowl that for some reason got stuck in a kitchen cabinet (no idea, lol) that was full of charms...yup - back from when charms were "in" and I bought gobs and gobs of them! I found this little gold candy cane and snipped off the hanger and voila - the Christmas look for my red and green paper! I haven't attached the pin back to it yet because I'm still debating - might end up as a zipper pull or something instead!

I had several mishaps during the course of all this because I was working with several paintbrushes at a time and hanging them off the lids of the paints and Mod Podge. My table picked up a few new colors. But again, serendipity reigned while I was scooting little pieces here and there and four triangles glued together became a perfect little paintbrush rest! A little bit of Basic Grey paper and some DecoArt paint in rich espresso metallic (same as I used for the kitchen spinner - gotta have my little matching details!) and it now holds two paintbrushes handy yet off the table (and they won't roll off like they do off of lids...).

The two bracelets are by far my favorite projects out of the bunch. The Asian bracelet was actually the first project that came out of this. I had the red squares and had some paper from Zsiage that had the perfect sized characters - for the record, the symbol is double happiness - what a cute concept for a bracelet! I used an old Family Treasures punch that just happened to be the ideal size and Mod Podged them on - I used glossy to give it that lacquered feel. Side drilled them and strung them onto stretchy jewelry cord with some silver beads and blackstone. For the pink and brown one, I painted the squares with the same espresso metallic paint and also painted some wooden beads with the same to match. I covered the squares with Basic Grey paper (the squares are identical front and back) and really wanted to put rhinestones in the middle. Well, I couldn't find exactly what I wanted. The flat-backed Swarovski just seemed like overkill, yet the cheap plastic was just plastic. I was in Michael's and happened to find a cell phone sticker set with little rhinestones in the clearance section for $1! Yea, I'm all about the clearance and sale and $1 items, lol! I used an Xacto to pull single stones out and adhered them to the centers of the designs and found matching glass beads from Blue Moon Beads to finish the bracelet off (again with stretchy jewelry cord). Love it! Note to self - there's a reason I despise working with stretchy cord though - I just didn't want a clasp interfering with the design on these!

And finally, I used the base as a little dimensional frame. Same espresso paint (can you tell I really love this with the Blush line?) and also another metallic, kind of a light teal that's used on the inside edges. Added the Basic Grey paper, a photo, and a tag from the Blush collection. Then I took some of the remaining diamonds and painted them and added the letter stickers.

A few notes about supplies. When altering small items (trust me, after working with them, I think trying to line up an actual photo on them would NOT be easy!), the 6x6 pads of patterned paper REALLY are the best answer! I used full-sized patterns on a lot of the Basic Grey (just because I had all these scraps!), but have a lot of my trusty 6x6 pads handy for later! I very rarely scrap in 6x6 but just can't resist the cute little pads and paper packs in this size and am always glad when I'm altering something small. MOST manufacturers shrink the entire pattern when doing 6x6 and 8x8 sizes and this can really make a difference in how things look!

Now, I'd like to introduce you to the tool that really inspired most of the projects - my handy dandy hand drill. This is from Forster (they do wood dowels and such you'll find in craft stores - I know Hobby Lobby has this drill right there with them but don't think Michael's carries it) and probably the #1 best craft buy I've ever made. They're on sale right now at Crafts Etc. for $3 (regularly still only about $4) - you get the drill handle and 3 drill bits. Seriously. Buy several and keep one in your toolbox, one in your scrapbook tote, one in your junk drawer... There is a bit of a learning curve to keeping it straight while drilling, but a little practice is all it takes. It will go through wood, acrylic, chipboard, etc. It is invaluable for altering small items. I. Love. This. Tool. I have several other craft drills (such as the Fiskars that you have to crank) and real drills, but this still gets pulled out more often than anything just because it's simple and does the job.

Well, I hope you've enjoyed the fun that has come out of this little $1 find as much as I have!

Thursday, November 22, 2007

Happy Thanksgiving!

First of all, I hope everyone is having a wonderful Thanksgiving!

Next, I'd like thank everyone for playing! There were some really great ideas but I think you'll all be shocked when you see what I'm actually working on. I hope to have it up tomorrow or Saturday - think I'll finish tonight, but I'm hoping for some sunshine to get it photographed. Here's a hint though - while each of the guesses had to do with the puzzle as a whole, I actually have TEN projects that have come out of this! And it's been so much fun I'm off to Michael's again on Sunday to stock up on some more!

And on to the RAK winner! I have no idea where to get one of those cute little random number generators I've seen other blogs use so I went ultra sophisticated...I called up a friend and asked him to pick a number between 1 and 18! He thinks I'm crazy now, but we have a winner and it is comment #8! Which is A. L. Clark! While I was trying to find an email address I clicked over to her blog and I definitely want to spend some more time perusing it! I think we just might be sisters separated at birth - even our kitties have similar habits!

Go check out her blog! It is And A. L., what I did NOT find on your website was an email address! So please email me at with your mailing address and I'll get your package out to you immediately!

Well, I have several things I've got ready to post and might get to some of them this evening, but I'll start off with a scrap bin I altered over the past few days. I'm horrible about scraps. I keep my large pieces in nice, organized folders, but have all the little pieces pretty well strewn around my house, tucked here and there. So when I started putting together this cute little alterable wastebasket from Kaiser (have I mentioned before how much I love them?), it just hit me that here was my answer. It's a good size, yet because it's tapered, it leaves room at the top to do some rummaging when I am making cards and such. I used papers from the New England line from Zsiage. The striped paper was actually covering all the way to the bottom, which is how I was able to line up the stripes easily. The chipboard letters are Monica font also from Zsiage, covered in brown ink and a matte finish spray. I spent forever going through all my ribbons to find something that seemed "right" to me and came up empty handed. Most because they were just too busy or had a horizotal stripe that competed with the paper already being used. Then I came across a box I had of TWISTEL...remember that? I think I have every color ever made. When I unwraped it all, the variegation was just perfect with the different shades of brown in the Zsiage papers - I was so excited! Just for good measure I added a curling tag from Making Memories that says "create".

Know what else I have stored in that box? Every color ever made of Magic Mesh! Wow - I'd forgotten how fun this was to work with...pretty much assume you'll see something with Magic Mesh on it here on my blog soon!

Off to my pumpkin pie!

Sunday, November 18, 2007

My creative muse and my first ever RAK!

Don't you just love those days where everything you look at just inspires you? I went shopping today. Now, first you must realize I have NO need to shop. I have "stuff" in every corner of my house - just ask my son! "Mommy, where are we eating dinner tonight?" is common - there simply are no surfaces safe from my projects in progress! So anyways, I went to Michael's. I picked up a lot of things. However, it's THIS

adorable little wooden puzzle (you can find it in the $1 section!) that's got my creative juices just churning! It's a fun little piece in itself (it's about 5 1/2" square) - it's a quilt, it's a puzzle, it's the building blocks to create tons of designs (there are pictures on the back showing some examples of how you can make shapes that vaguely resemble things like bird, rockets, and I'm not sure what else. It's creativity itself, in stocking stuffer form. Or is it?

Now, since I've recently discovered my little blog actually has READERS (who'd have thunk it??!!), I've been advised to do some fun interactive things to get everybody involved and I LOVE that idea! I totally don't want to be on my own out here so I'm always excited to hear from you and what creative things YOU are doing too! So here's the deal. Leave a comment as to what YOU think I'm going to do with this or what YOU would do! I'll pick a random winner by comment number on Thanksgiving to determine the winner of this little package of things that you can alter your own goodies with!

I'm including a 7gypsies self-inking stamp (the round flower), some pink glittery chipboard letters and foam Birthday stamps from Scrapworks, a package of wooden tags from Kaiser (who I LOVE LOVE LOVE!), and some really gorgeous chunky glitter glue (there are little snowflakes in there!) from Sulyn. I've got a bunch of almost done projects I'm hoping to post this week and I've used either these items or something really similar!

Stop on by this week to see some more projects including (depending on how long this takes, lol) what's going to happen to my little puzzle!

Oh! And I also found a $1 Rubik's cube, lol! Hmmm...

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Quick Christmas Ornament

You have to love those five minute projects! This would be great for last minute gifts or even for kids to put together. I used one of the old metal frames from Making Memories (they came in packages of 3 different sizes) and simply glued on a few glittered chipboard pieces from Scrapworks (are those cute or what!!!). I then used the Crop-O-Dile to punch two holes in the top to thread the ribbon through. The ribbon is from American Crafts. Then I just used a tape runner to attach a picture to the back of the frame.

Friday, November 9, 2007

BG Blush Monogram Necklace

Ah, the things you can make with scrapbook paper! The beads for this necklace are made from paper from Basic Grey's Blush line, as is the pendant. The pendant is a blank from Plaid covered in paper and a letter sticker als from the Blush line. I then covered it in Papier Glass Finish from Plaid. The color in the picture is a little off because I didn't want to wait until morning to photograph it in natural light so this is just plain old dining room light!