Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Japan Hobby Show Make 'n Take Sweets

I was so lucky to be able to attend the Japan Hobby Show in April.  Of all the wonderful things I saw, I was most impressed with the fake sweet confections created by the crafters.  For at least three years, this crafting has been very popular in Japan.  It is understandable that Japanese crafters would be attracted to this art form because of their obsession with beautiful desserts.  You can just look at the department store bakery showcases to know they are masters of pastries.  In the above photo you can see what I made in two of the make 'n take much fun and so easy.  Any interest blogland?  I bought some of the supplies and hopefully will be able to duplicate some of the fake sweets.

Real or fake?  The second photo shows the pastries from the showcase in our hotel's restaurant.  The third and fourth photos were made by crafters at the Japan Hobby Show.  Isn't the artistry is just amazing!  Even the sandwiches in the background (of the 3rd photo) are made of air dried Modena clay.  The last photo (4th one) shows pastries made out of wool fleece.  Now I wish I had purchased some of the luscious wool desserts to copy. The Japanese are masters of trompe l'oeil (fool the eye) art!  I hope you've been inspired by this post to create some food art and not to consume more desserts LOL!

Saturday, May 25, 2013

Congrats! You Got Your Diploma!

Getting a college diploma is not easy for everyone.  When someone works hard and achieves her goal, I think it deserves a big shout out!  For that reason, I made this cheerful graduation card using the smiling face of Yumi (from the Fumi and Yumi great line of stamps).  Besides the Yumi image that I colored with Copic pens (from Ben Franklin Crafts), the front has a diploma and cap that were from a generous pack of die cuts by Doodlebug Design. The handmade embroidery floss tassel and glittered blue candy dot were glued onto the cap for added dimension. The base of the card was cut from a Doodlebug Design 12x12 card stock using a Sizzix card die with an interchangable star die.

The outside star and inside one were cut using the same star die used for the pop-up element.  The inside star was cut from yellow glitter paper.  The words for this card were stamped using stamps from a Ditto set. A small inker was used to only color the word 'Congrats' from the larger stamp.  This gives the stamp many separate words to use.  The Pebbles washi tape easily gave just the right touch of color to the inside of the card.  Ben Franklin Crafts has a large selection of  tearable, repositionable, washi tape for crafting.  I hope you've enjoyed this post and that it has given you the nudge to make a card for that hard-working graduate, who deserves nothing but the best for the years of hard work.  Enjoy your crafty side.  It's a blessing.

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Ode To MOM

Okay, I know that Mother's Day has passed and I did finish this card before the 12th, but I just didn't get it posted on time.  Anyway, this card was posthumously made for my mom who was an unusual dresser (i.e.gaudy) and I laugh now when I look in the mirror and realize I am starting to resemble her 'style'.  She also was a seamstress-wanna-be but bless her heart as hard as she tried, I could never proudly wear her creations. Ah, your MOM....gotta love've only got the one and when she's gone....she's gone. These cards are dedicated to the memory of my mother.

The girl image is a stamp from La-la-land that I finally got inked up after I purchased the wood handle Hero Arts stamp, French Dresses.  I really like how the stamps paired together.  The French Dresses stamp was inked with Staz-On black ink and stamped on brown vellum to give the look of dress pattern tissue. Those of you who sew will know what I'm talking about and why I used  pinking shears (what's that?) to decorate the edges  While making these cards I also was cutting the tags off some clothes I purchased in Japan.  Sometimes I save the pretty tags to add to my travel journals because I love the graphic designs and shopping memories.  One tag off a Green Gate shirt from the Uniquo shop seemed to match very well with the pink dress image so I added it to the card. See the piece behind the's a clothing tag!  The fabric and lace tapes used on these cards were purchased in Japan.  They need to be cut with a scissors and are re-positional.  I'd like to share some fabric and lace tapes (see photo below) with the Ben Franklin Craft Club member who sends in the first comment to this post. the first! Thank you for taking the time to visit and read the post completely. Please leave a comment if you can. They make me deliriously happy!

Congratulations to Sharon Ohata who won the tapes for being the first craft club member to comment on this blog post.  I'm still waiting for Mele09 (Dori) to send me her full name and mailing address so I can send her the pack of crinkle origami paper.  Dori,  if you are reading this, send your information to or I will award the prize to someone else.

Saturday, May 18, 2013

Snap in Style Jewelry

I know that I talked about this Snap in Style jewelry before, but I just discovered the leather cuff bracelet at the Mapunapuna Ben Franklin Crafts and found the perfect southwestern style snaps to add to it.  For those of you not familiar with this line of inexpensive, easy to assemble jewelry, take a good look at this photo.  The leather cuff is completely finished, but you can snap off the elements and snap on others.  The hair clips come as a set of two, one shown with snap on.  I think I will try to figure out some way to cover the clip part as I think it is too shiny.  Perhaps leather or velvet would be nice.  I'll show it to you again if it turns out well.  The watch (at the bottom of the photo)  is nearly complete with only one more snap to add.  I chose all black and white round snaps to make it a basic easy-to-match timepiece.  Of course, the beauty of this jewelry is the ability to snap off and snap on pieces to suit any mood.  I think this jewelry is reasonably priced. Because all it takes to make them is to snap them together, there are no excuses for those of you who are always saying, "I can't make jewelry" or "it's too expensive".  Won't your friends and family be surprised if you say...."And I made it myself!"

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Thank You 'Omiyage' Tags

As most Hawaii locals know, when you go on a trip, you bring back gifts, omiyage (o-me-ya-gay)(Japanese pronunciation) for others.  My neighbors who take care of our mail/newspapers and our friends who care for our pets in our absence truly deserve 'omiyage' for all their help.  To dress up the gifts and include a message of thanks I made gift tags using a Fumi and Yumi new 'peek-a-boo' series stamp.  The character in the cute stamp has a turtle on her head which made it perfect for the tag as our pets are turtles. The tag shape was achieved with a Spellbinder frame die set (sold at Ben Franklin Crafts).  The stamped words are from a Hero Arts clear stamp set.  For the background I used the die to cut some of the crinkle origami paper I purchased in Japan.

  Would you like some paper to play with?  To win, be the first Ben Franklin Craft Club member to comment on this post and I will mail you the packet shown in the photo above. See, it's worth it to be the early bird and thoroughly read every post!  By the way, Cheryl (Life is Sweet) was the winner of the last give-away.  Congrats! Cheryl!  Thanks for visiting this blog.  I hope you enjoyed what you read and that you'll return often to this site.

Sunday, May 12, 2013

Sn@p! Album

This was another workshop project for which we were given picture instructions, so I was a good student and followed them for the cover. Inside the album were indexed dividers, photo holders, etc. If I hadn't spent so much time cutting apart the 12x12 sheets, I would have had more time to decorate inside my album.  I am undecided about whether it is a good idea to cut apart the sheets because they are two sided and I want to have the option to change my mind.  In any case, the Sn@p! items are so fresh and bright that they should appeal to all crafters, especially teenagers.  Right now Ben Franklin Crafts has an abundance of Sn@p! products to fill albums, make scrapbook pages or super clever card.
Pictured here are just a few of the pages and sticker sheets that come in the 12x12 kit package.  In the front of the photo are some of the available pockets, 3x4 cards, and 4x6 journal cards.  To me this line of paper products coordinates well with the Pebbles embellishments and new thin washi tapes sets.  The ability to mix and match the two lines adds to their desirability and extends your supplies.  Thank you for stopping to read this post.  Please leave a comment if you can spare a minute or two.  I enjoy knowing that there are real people out in blogland. LOL!

Thursday, May 9, 2013

Crinkle Origami Paper B-day Card

Before leaving for Japan I was hoping to finish a Mother's Day card and a birthday card for a long time friend.  However, as is often the case when preparing for a trip, they didn't get done.  That meant that returning home and only partially unpacked, I had to decide which card to create.  The birthday card won out as it needs to be put into the mail by tomorrow and my Mother's Day card was just in honor of all mothers.  In Japan I found some interesting textured printed paper which I used for the background, flowers, and paper pieced kimono.
The structure of this card came from a card a friend sent me. (See fan card.)  Unfolded it was longer than 12" so I altered my card to a 12" x 6" wide piece with folds at 2",4", and 8". The large flowers were stamped on the pink paper using a Bo Bunny stamp using white ink and heat set embossing powder. After cutting out the flowers they were distressed with pink ink. The leaf (from a Hero Arts Cling leaf set) was stamped on white card stock and stamped with words from a Hero Arts set.  The girl with the cupcake is a Sister Stamp and is available at Ben Franklin Crafts.
I bought extra crinkled paper (see bottom photo) and would like to share some with the first Ben Franklin Craft Club member to send in a comment.  If you are the speedy Craft Club member winner, I will contact you and you will need to send me (via email) your mailing address. Thank you for visiting this blog site.  In future posts I will show you some projects made at the Japan Hobby and Craft Show.....oh,and perhaps there will be more free give-a-ways!

Monday, May 6, 2013

Echo Park Photo Frame

Despite the fact that I bent the edges of the pieces (that extended beyond the frame) in my hand-carry luggage, I think this photo frame turned out really cool.  I partially followed the Echo Park demonstrator/teacher but in the end my need to express my own style took over and I had fun with the brad embellishments and those included in the paper kit.  The BOY kit is really good for those of us who have sons because it is sometime difficult to find the right 'stuff'.  I do however adore the Girl kit as it is sweet and sort of vintage.  It should be great for making cards and goodie containers for my vintage friends.  (Don't tell them I called them vintage.  They've been just well-loved for a very long time.)  These Echo Park products are fairly new to Ben Franklin Crafts (I think) but these two sets are really worth seeking out because they contain an abundance of usable double-sided papers and  great stickers plus you can purchase additional coordinating embellishments.....  2 CUTE 2 MISS!

Thursday, May 2, 2013

Bo Bunny Album

This was another employee workshop project.  We were given a copious amount of supplies including the album, page sets, and embellishments.  The speaker also gave us clear stamps, which are new to Bo Bunny (I think) and showed us a sample album that used the stamps effectively.  However, I found that the surface of the album was a bit slick and the cover was slightly bowed.  This made stamping difficult.  For those of you who stamp, you know that it is asking for trouble to stamp on an album cover because once it's messed up it can't be changed, only covered up.  I noticed that many of the other crafters in the workshop struggled with this part and many album covers became smudgy and over-stamped.  When I returned home, I couldn't resist tearing off all what I did at the workshop and starting from scratch.  I am 100% happier with the resulting cover which didn't have any stamping only taped down Bo Bunny papers and the embellishments I originally used on the messy version.  My vision for this cover was to convey the feeling of a fancy French boutique shop.  I think the new Bo Bunny products are absolutely gorgeous and very feminine.  You just HAVE to check them out at Ben Franklin Crafts.  There are so many items to choose from and they  will work well together, giving a vintage old world charm to your crafts.  Promise me that you'll take a look at the Bo Bunny selection at BFC.  You're going to be so happy if you do!