Monday, December 20, 2010

Merry Christmas!

My last post for Christmas.  Hope everyone has a beautiful holiday. 
I am posting just a few cards to share (now that they've been mailed away)...

and have one last hanging gift idea to share - that includes a a sneak peek at stamp available in January (shown on the magnet seen on the left from set called "Eat Chocolate!").

I enjoyed making this little magnetic board for a relative who loves cats & chocolate.

I wanted to give something personal, but had few other gift ideas for her this year.  Magnets are a lot of fun to make and I even cut a piece of magnetic backing for the Post-It notes that she can re-use (if she wants).
Again, Merry Christmas, everyone!

Sunday, December 12, 2010

PPA72 - Inspiration card

This week's challenge at Pals Paper Arts is a wintry inspirational challenge-
lots of beautiful bling & snowy scenes appear in the inspiration photos.

I decided to combine elements of the images with an easy snowflake card.  Love the felt snow flurries (they were a great SU! Clearance Rack discovery), but to make them sparkle a bit more, I added a rhinestone center & some dazzling diamonds glitter on the middle and edges. 

I painted a bit of frost shimmer paint on some scrap Crumb Cake cardstock to match the retired dsp I used and punched it with the modern label punch to use for the layered sentiment (phrase from retired More the Merrier hostess set was stamped in Crumb Cake & punched with the word window punch, that too has some frost shimmer added to it; the sentiment was adhered with dimensionals).

As long as you have time for the glue to dry on your felt snowflakes, this is also an easy to duplicate holiday card!  I've just finished a few more crafty gifts (you can see them on my earlier posts - decoupage frame & hanging decorations), so a quick and easy card to wrap things up is just what I needed.  It also was not hard to be inspired with wintry images as we look out our windows this beautiful Sunday morning.  Just under 3 inches of beautiful fresh powdery snow have covered everything.  
Happy Handmade Holiday, everyone! Enjoy!

Another Crafty Gift Idea: Decoupage Frame

Okay, I'm hooked on decoupage now... An unfinished wood frame from your local craft store is an economical & fun base for a personalized gift you can make with any patterned paper on hand.  For the frame above, I used some Karen Foster Old World Map scrapbook paper that served as a perfect background for the added international stamps I've collected over the years.  I made frames like the one above for my friends who I met when I worked with international students at our local university (that's where I got most of the stamps over the years, from our office mail!). 

I popped up a few of the stamps with dimensionals to give the frame some additional interest.

Only thing I stamped on this was the Friends embellishment (from SU! Vintage Vogue stamp set).  I covered the entire circle with Versamark then embossed it with clear embossing powder using my heat gun to add some sheen and texture.  Note, decoupage medium makes water based dye ink bleed if it is not protected by something like the heat embossing I used.  Instead of adhering the embellishment directly on the frame, I chose to attach it by some twine which I felt gave it a similar look to a unique package to coordinate with my international mail & postage theme. 

You cannot tell from the photos, but I cut a clear window sheet (any thick, clear, clean plastic would work) to fit the photo opening to make my own photo protector.  The unfinished frame does not come with any type of acrylic or glass for a photo, so this may be optional, but I liked the addition to use for a photo frame and was happy to have some on hand.

Hope you, like me, are having fun with your own handmade holiday this year, too!

Saturday, December 4, 2010

Hanging around, waiting for Christmas?

Here are some hanging decoration gift ideas for you! 
I've been working like one of Santa's elves trying to get some handmade gifts completed and I think I may be half way there.  The first hanging shown is one for my friend living in Sweden.  God Jul is their traditional Christmas greeting.  An added plus with this phrase is it's easy to make 6 letters into a hanging decoration! 

I punched some dsp with an extra large circle punch then layered those on circles of cherry cobbler cardstock.  The red circles were adhered to alternating chocolate chip and always artichoke cardstock that was adhered to some thin chipboard and die cut with a Sizzix scallop circle die.  I covered all the circles with a decoupage finish that I hope will help the hanging decoration stay in good shape over time.

The letters were die cut in cherry cobbler cardstock using the Serif Essentials Sizzix dies.  Each letter had the edges lightly sponged in brown ink then I applied a thin layer of Crystal Effects to give the letters a glossy look.  The middle circle I decorated with some hand cut holly leaves from the package of Deck the Halls designer series paper. 

Antique brads also accent the first, middle and last circles. 

I punched holes in my covered chipboard circles with my Crop-a-dile then thread a long strand of felt ribbon (retired SU! Alpine ribbon) thru the holes to attach the circles.  I added an extra loop on top and added another accent of ribbon on the last circle. 

The close up pics of my holly center did not turn out, but here are some more images of the words (after seeing these close ups, I also realize it's time to re-paint our front door!):

For another idea, as a Pre-Christmas present, I made the magnetic hanging decoration shown below for my sister.  It's not just for Christmas, as everything on the board (except for the Chalkboard vinyl) is attached by magnets!

If your house was like my house, then I'm guessing you are familiar with the phrase, "If Mom's not happy, nobody's happy!"? I thought as a motivator for good behavior for my niece and nephew, my sis may have fun using this board to express her feelings.

The board is a piece of galvanized metal flashing (so popular with us crafters) that has been covered with some DSP.  I adhered a bit of chalkboard vinyl to it so she can use it as a list board if she wants to.
She can replace the "naughty" & "nice" magnets with something else after the holidays, of course.  And the kids' pics are on magnets, too, so they can be moved to either category (if needed!).

She can even move the cardstock dial to suit her mood
(or remove the dial when she tires of it- yes, it's on a magnet too). 
Of course, I'm sure that my niece & nephew are just angels all the time, so I went ahead & pre-set the dial at the happiest setting. 
Happy Birthday, sis!

Love my craft buddy!

Love my craft buddy!
Dog's view of the Craft-a-torium!