Sunday, October 14, 2018

Soaps For Holiday Gift Giving

 If you've been to HM Ben Franklin Crafts recently, you probably noticed all the wonderful supplies for making beauty products. It really is super easy to melt a soap base in the microwave, add some fragrance and colorant, then pour the mixture into a mold.  Voila! You have beautiful handmade soap bars to give to your lucky friends. In the photo above, the pink is a citrusy grapefruit, the yellow is a refreshing lemon (I added finely grated lemon peel for texture and scent.), and the green is a yummy melon scent.
For a Thanksgiving dinner favor, you might want to wrap the soap in unbleached wax paper,burlap cloth and fiber ribbons, then embellish with a pine cone, a cinnamon stick and a feather.  All of these items can be purchased at HM Ben Franklin Crafts.  The soap under the burlap has a sweet almond fragrance to which I added some raw oatmeal for texture and its skin-soothing quality.
 For the soaps in the first photo, I used these items.  The soap blocks are available in goat milk, avocado and shea butter.  There are many scents and colorants to choose from at HM BFC.  I truly enjoyed the ease of making these soaps and I'm very pleased with the quality of the finished product.  I hope you will try your hand at soapmaking. It will leave you bubbling over with joy!

Wednesday, October 10, 2018

Halloween Monster Cards

 The Sizzix 'Birch Trees' die was the start and inspiration for these Halloween cards.  I visualized the idea of monsters in the forest during Halloween.  The Bo Bunny monsters were stamped on watercolor paper with Momento black ink. Then they were sprayed with water before applying Ken Oliver powder colors. More water was sprayed on and blotted off to get the desired color effect. After the monsters were dry, they were cut out and color pencils were used to highlight the details.
 I like the randomness of the splotches on the monsters and how they remind me of the creatures in the Wild Things book.  Both cards are similar but the background papers (from a 6x6 Halloween paper pad) give them a different appearance.
 Another Sizzix die was used for the words which were cut out from silver sparkle paper.  The monsters also have a bit of sparkle due to the application of silver metallic ink.  I will be using the birch tree die in the future to make autumn and Christmas cards.  Please stop by this site again to see how easy it is to change up the paper and die cut a different seasonal scene.  Trick or Treat! Don't get caught by monsters with smelly feet!

Saturday, October 6, 2018

Halloween Finger Puppet Cards

While shopping at HM Ben Franklin Crafts, I purchased the cutest Darice Halloween Finger Puppet kit.  This kit makes 3 adorable felt finger puppets. These peel and stick puppets are so easy to make that even a young child could make them.  If you have a far away child or one that can't eat sugar, these puppets are a 'sweet' Halloween gift.  I simply added some printed paper to a solid card and die cut labels for the sentiments.
 Aren't the puppets awesome even on my old fingers?  I love the googly eyes that come in the kit too!
 Here is a view of how I placed Darice Velcro dots on the card and puppet so that the puppet can be worn and wiggled.  For extra strength, I put a dab of glue under the dot on the felt side as the dot sometimes comes off the felt. I hope you'll go to HM Ben Franklin Crafts and see all the spooky, cute Halloween items for sale there.  Happy Halloween shopping!

Tuesday, October 2, 2018

Hello Kitty with Bear Balloons Birthday Card

 Recently, I saw a card in blogland that had a really great cloud background. Simple instructions explained how to achieve the look using Distress Oxide Ink (Ranger), a cloud die and a water spray bottle.  After one non-cloud try, my second attempt was acceptable enough to make into a card.  Because my daughter-in-law and I are Hello Kitty fans, I decided to dig up my old Hello Kitty dies to make her a birthday card.  The dress and bow were paper pieced and rather than deal with the tiny eye, nose and whisker pieces, I glued a piece of black paper behind the face and penciled in the whiskers.  The dies for the bear balloons came from a different die set and I used two die cut pieces to represent my newborn identical twin grandsons. For the balloon strings I glued on Nipoly wire that used to be sold at HM Ben Franklin Crafts.  If you don't have any colored, flexible wire in your stash, you can substitute twine.  The sentiment was stamped with a very old Stampendous wooden handled stamp and Kaleidacolor ink.  Also in the photo are packages of 3D foam squares (my favorite brand from BFC) and Lawn Fawn 'Just For You' stamp set (to fancy up the back of your handmade cards). I hope this card encourages you to try your hand at making cloud backgrounds. If you need a detailed explanation, write to me at lsakami@aol .com and I will be happy to answer you.

 "I've looked at clouds from both sides now, from up and down and still somehow, it's cloud illusions I recall,  I really don't know clouds at all"....Joni Mitchell.

Friday, September 28, 2018

Life Is A Rollercoaster

While magazine perusing at Barnes and Noble, I spied some really cool dies that came FREE with a magazine. I snapped them up and intended to use them this summer, but alas the summer is over. Before I put away my summer craft supplies, I just had to use this set.  For me, summer fairs mean eating gobs of goodies, so the background paper for this card seemed appropriate.  It was super simple to die cut the pieces from red and yellow striped card stock.  The words took the longest to apply because I had to write away to England for the sentiment stamp set. As soon as it arrived, I used my MISTI tool (purchased at HM Ben Franklin Crafts) to guarantee that I stamped the words exactly where I wanted them to be.  This finished card makes me very happy because to me it captures the excitement of a fair and the sentiment is something I feel almost everyday!

Monday, September 24, 2018

Halloween Treat Box Tree

Even though we don't get many trick-o-treaters stopping at our house, I still like to make treat boxes to pass out to friends and family.  This year I found a new treat box Sizzix die at HM Ben Franklin Crafts.  It has a cute shape and is small so you don't need to go overboard on the sweets.  

I was very happy that the small size of the box allowed me to use up scrap Halloween papers from previous years.  Also I have lots of leftover Halloween ribbons, stickers and other decorations so it was satisfying to add them to the boxes.
If you don't have a stash of Halloween stuff, HM Ben Franklin Crafts has many delightful items to satisfy your crafting sweet tooth.  This year I will put homemade lip balm in some of the boxes because it is a no-calorie treat many friends would like more than candy. Hope you have spooky fun decorating and giving treat boxes this year.  Happy Halloween! 

Thursday, September 20, 2018

Lip Balm Madness!

 I was extremely excited to see the lip balm, bath bomb, and soap making supplies at HM Ben Franklin Crafts.  I used to make soaps years ago when the stores carried the ingredients but making lip balm is something new for me.  Before adding the lip balm to the containers, I decorated them with washi tape or dried flowers.  With my finger I rubbed on liquid LED resin over the washi tape or flowers and set it with a LED light. Then, it was actually super easy to melt the lip balm mixture in the microwave (just a small amount in a paper cup) for about a minute. Next, you just need to add a tiny amount of colorant and few drops of scent. Stir and pour the fragrant liquid into the tube or small round container. My favorite flavors of lip balm are yummy strawberry and  refreshing mint.
 This lip balm container has mint scented lip balm so I opted not to add a colorant.  I found it very satisfying to make lip balm for myself and to give away as gifts.  They will be great alternatives for candy in my Halloween treat bags.  Please visit again to see some of the cool treat bags I will be passing out this year. Leave a sweet comment to this post if you want to make me smile. ;)