Sunday, October 17, 2021

Gemstone Bead and Crystal Necklaces

While taking a break from paper crafting, I decided to make some necklaces for gifts and for sale in my Hilo locker box.  The top necklace consists of aquamarine beads on a sterling chain. The second one down is labradorite on a gold filled chain, The third one is chrysoprase on a sterling and gold filled chain. The last one has multi-colored moonstone beads on a gold filled chain.

These last three necklaces have amethyst, blue labradorite, and green labradorite crystals on gold filled with sterling and sterling chains.  I am happy with the result of my jewelry making and liked the last one so much that I made a similar one just for me....*wink*wink*! Which one is your favorite?

Wednesday, October 13, 2021

The Purrfect Birthday Card

I usually try to tailor my birthday cards to the recipient so I knew that this one had to have cats and cactus. My daughter-in-law has grey sister cats who will not allow her to have cactus (or any live plant) in her house so she has fake potted cacti on a shelf...sad huh?  Anyway, I designed this card for her birthday.  I ended up using three stamp and die sets because I couldn't decide which of the cute images would make her smile.  I started by stamping the Hero Arts background image onto white watercolor paper with green waterproof ink.  Then I dabbed on some Hero Arts reactive purple and turquoise ink before spraying with water. The cats and other images were stamped on marker paper (with waterproof ink) before coloring them in with Copic pens.  It was easy work to cut out the images with matching dies and adhere them to the card with foam dots.  
For a finishing touch, I stamped the words (from My Favorite Things set) and heat embossed it in white. The strip was hand easy to need for a die.  For the inside of the card, where the hand written message will go, was further embellished with two of the cute Hero Arts cat images and a birthday cake. ((The Hero Arts stamp and die sets were in one of their monthly kits so may no longer be available from HA but perhaps you can find it for resale.)  Of course I had to decorate the envelope too because I have an enormous collection of cat themed washi tapes...and I don't even own a cat!  Luckily, I know many cat owners so all my 'cat' craft stuff will get used eventually. LOL!


Saturday, October 9, 2021

Halloween Cats on Trick O' Treat Bags

One of the best things about flying on an 11 hour Hawaiian Airlines flight is the snack bag....NOT the snack (I refuse to eat it) but the sturdy bag with the neutral colors and woven handle.  The bags have a small logo on the top front and back of the bags. These are easily covered up with printed card stock. This is a good way to use up leftover Halloween paper.
The new Lawn Fawn Halloween stamp and die sets have adorable cats whipping up a secret potion.        The images were stamped, colored with Copic pens and die cut before adhering them to the bag with foam adhesives. (The cats were colored grey because these bags are going to a family who have grey sister cats.)                                     

I used a different card stock paper on the backs of the bags and added tags cut from leftover card stock. Since the backs of the tags were plain I added stickers.  (I'm never going to use up all my Halloween stickers.  Who should I will them too? They will be antiques soon!)  Okay, going to work on some more fall and Halloween ideas or should I do the laundry...wink*wink*???


Tuesday, October 5, 2021

Cape Cod Thank You Card

This is the third day since we returned from Cape Cod....jet lag day.  I am having a hard time focusing on crafting but I really did need to send out a thank you card to some dear friends who made us a fabulous fresh lobster dinner complete with appetizers and homemade dessert! This card (like the last posted one) didn't show up well in my photo.  I kept it simple and started with a card stock that was printed with a photo scene that looked a bit like Cape Cod.  I stamped the words with blue ink and dusted with sparkle embossing powder before using a heat gun.  I stamped the shells on watercolor paper before coloring them with Gensai pearl watercolors and die cutting them. Foam dot adhesives used under the shells made them more dimensional. Wow, that was so simple even with jet lag!

 While digging around for an envelope for the Cape Cod card, I happened upon an envelope that exactly matched a tie-dyed washi paper scrap on my desk  so I glued the paper scrap onto a card blank and added a die cut foil 'thank you'.  ( I had the foil words already cut because I always cut 'extras'  so when I'm in a rush the words are there in the package with the die...a time saver! )  This thank you card goes into my stash for future use.  Even though tired, I had a good crafting day!

Friday, October 1, 2021

Bridal Shower Card

I assumed that my niece's bridal shower would be cancelled because of Covid, but surprisingly it was not.  Therefore, I had to hurriedly put together a card for the bride-to-be.  Looking through my stash of appropriate bridal stuff, I chose a few dimensional stickers and some decorative pieces.  I had to color enhance the card front with Photoshop so that you could see the details. (For some reason my photos are washed out...perhaps it was the time of day or the change of light bulbs.)
To fancy up the card I added an envelope liner using the Paper Accents tool I purchased at HM Ben Franklin Crafts. The package has four templates so other sized and shapes can be accommodated. Even though the papers from the Kaiser paper pack are not exactly the same on the card and envelope liner, I think they look good together.
Since I'm planning to give a gift card to the bride-to -be, I decided to create a pop-up element using the Lawn Fawn die.  I used more Kaiser Craft paper for the card holder and the inside liner. The card base was too rough for writing on so an inner liner was needed.  Although not easily seen, I rounded the liner corners using my trusty corner clipper tool so that they would match the scallop edge of the card holder.
Although barely visible, the envelope front was enhanced with some 'old' Martha Stewart embossed sticker strips.  I think they add extra elegance to the card as well as covering a small dot on the envelope.  (The stickers are so old they didn't stick well so I had to glue them on...LOL! This craft hoarder is not embarrassed.)
I thought you might like to see the pretty silver flecked card blank back which doesn't show much on the card front.  Choosing interesting elements for your cards can really elevate them and disguise the fact that you had to compose the card in a short time. Okay, I need to get cracking on some Halloween and Autumn projects.  Please visit again to see what I've created for the fall season. Hugs!

Monday, September 27, 2021

I don't usually make my holiday cards this early and usually I do something with hand coloring and die cutting but this year I spied some Simple Stories papers (at HM Ben Franklin Crafts) that were so charming that I was inspired.  One of the 12x12 sheets had a set of tags which I was able to cut out, punch holes and tie on some twine. Combined with assorted fall themed papers I was able to make a cornucopia of cards to send with my annual family newsletter.
To make these cards unique, I punched holes in the card front (not through the whole card) and tied on the tags upon which I affixed mini Vippies calendars ( I haven't received my 2022 ones yet). I melted sealing wax on a slick heat proof flexible surface like parchment and impressed it with the metal stamp. Once cool the wax was glued (with 3 in 1 Beacon glue) to the card leaving an edge free so that the tag can be inserted underneath. I plan to tell the recipients that the tag  twine can be untied and the calendar tied to a place where a calendar is needed.  Under the calendar is a space where I will write something like 'Live Aloha' or 'Share the Aloha'. Small strips of autumn themed paper from my scrap pile were added for interest and to whittle down my ever-growing stack of 'too-good-to throw away' small paper pieces.  The wax for the melted seals are sold at HM BFC as well as the metal stamps.  It might take several tries to get the puddle of melted wax (use a heat gun) just right so that the resulting impressed wax is somewhat round.  I used a scissors to cut off small pieces of wax to melt rather than heating the stick of wax which can be unpredictable. (The metal stamper used on these cards impresses a pine sprig and was given to me as a gift...source unknown.) Blogger Yvonne (Do More With Less) uses wax seals on her cards so she was my inspiration for this cool add on.  Okay, so I have enough greeting cards to write a short message to friends and family and to enclose my yearly family newsletter update.  Yay!  I'm early this year!!!!


Thursday, September 23, 2021

Halloween Swirl Trick o' Treat Card

It's sad that because of the pandemic most kids won't be going trick o' treating this year.  Since my grandsons deserve some Halloween joy, I decided to make cards with gift card holders.  At least with a gift card the boys can find some treats of their choice.  I love the new Whimsy 'taffy' slimline papers.  The bright colors remind me of yummy candy so it seemed natural to use them to make Halloween themed cards. The Whimsy die cut windows were cut from plaid paper and simply glued over the swirled papers.  Lawn Fawn Halloween characters were stamped, colored, and glittered (with fine crystal glitter) before adhering with foam adhesives.  (Adding glitter with a glue pen covered up the shading I did but I think kids always like sparkle.)
This photo shows the use of another colored sheet of Whimsy slimline paper.  It changes the look a bit but I think it will still be attractive to the boys.  Beneath the card is the back of the other card which shows the  corner gift card holder made from the Lawn Fawn die.  The words (from the Halloween fox set) used on these cards were stamped and then cut out with Whimsy label dies. Usually I make my own slimline envelopes, but I was so happy to discover slimline envelopes at HM Ben Franklin Crafts.  There were several colors including black, kraft and white with speckles.  I chose the speckled one because it seemed the most 'Halloweeny'. LOL!  "Trick O' Treat to all kids big and small!"


Sunday, September 19, 2021

I decided I wanted to decorate a box as a kit for making s'mores.  This box was the right size but it was a bright yellow.  After covering the top of the box with the last of my tie-dyed washi paper, the box was still too yellow and had some words here and there.  Papering the inside cover, box bottom inside and out it looked a little better.  To pull in the yellow color I cut a moon and put it behind the Lawn Fawn colored and die cut critters.  A little glitter was added to make the fire sparkle and a label was added to hint at the box's contents.
Inside the box lid I glued on a die cut S'more character just for fun.  It was a bit tedious to put together the figure as there were many little pieces and I kept changing my mind on the colors...LOL!  Over all I really like how this box turned out and can't wait to fill it with the ingredients and instructions for making my favorite fall treat.  Yay for Autumn!


Wednesday, September 15, 2021

Autumn Shadow Box Cards

I had more ideas for autumn shadow box cards so I decided to test them out. I really like the little scenes that I can create with such simple stamp and die sets.
Because I just purchased the Lawn Fawn campfire stamp and die sets, I had to make something cute, immediately!  For sparkle I added a little glitter to the fire but unfortunately, it barely shows up in the photo.
This is the shadow box card that I will probably make for the base of my calendars (if I get around to making them this year).  Because the Mama Elephant stamped scene is not really seasonal, I think it is suitable for use all year long.  Also the sentiment is appropriate for tucking into any gift or passing out for most occasions.  All the shadow box cards fold flat for easy giving or mailing. Oh yes, I added some clear sparkle glitter on the dandelions just for a little magic fun.
I bought the Lawn Fawn stamp and die set last Halloween but it was too late for creating something with it so I had to wait a whole year to use it.  LOL!  I really like the costumed foxes and plan to make lots of cute Halloween paper crafts with them.  The fox's cupcake costume has Nuvo pink dimensional paint on it which acts as a glue for the fake candy sprinkles.  Anyway, I thought you'd like to see what I've been working on recently.  Hope you'll post your holiday creations on your blog site.  I love hearing from you and seeing your creative craft work.


Saturday, September 11, 2021

Squirrel Shadow Box Card

I love making shadow box cards because they remind me of the shoe box dioramas we made in elementary school for library week.  The parts for this shadow box card were cut with dies from the Lawn Fawn Shadow Box Card Park Add-Ons.  You will need the Shadow Box Card die set too to make the base.
This view shows the dyed/stenciled cloud background that was made from paper leftover from a previous project.  The trees, sides and back of the card were die cut from brown card stock that was first stamped (using dark brown ink) with the Hero Arts woodgrain large stamp.
The two strips of grass were adhered to the sides of the box using the tabs that are formed with the die.

The 'thinking of you' banner was made by stamping the Hero Arts sentiment onto a Lawn Fawn Fancy Fold Banner.  This shadow box card folds flat for mailing. I may write a message on the back with a white gel pen. Perhaps this year I will order more mini calendars and attach them to the back of shadow box cards.  Because this card was made with dies it would be easy to duplicate and/or make similar ones.  We'll see what time will allow me to do this year.  I'll keep you posted...LOL!


Tuesday, September 7, 2021

Tie Dyed Washi Paper Box with Gift Enclosure Cards

After having success with tie dying washi paper (see previous post), I decided to tie dye washi paper with autumn colors and cover a box.  I covered only the top of this box because the inside of the box (which once held Japanese treats) was in pristine condition and had a neat partition.
I looked for tiny envelopes but after an unsuccessful search, I decided that I could make cards that didn't need envelopes.  Sticking with the autumn theme, I stamped the Hero Arts woodgrain onto brown paper and cut them into cards that would fold up to fit in the box compartments.  
Next yarn/ribbon (from HM BFC) was tied around each card. (Don't cut the ribbon too short because it will be difficult to tie it into a bow.) I had leftover tie dyed washi paper so I decided to use it for the leaves.  Plain white card stock was glued behind the washi paper before die cutting the leaves.  (Washi paper by itself is too fragile for die cutting.)  
To give the leaves more color, I dabbed on some autumn colored ink pads and sprayed the leaves with water before patting them dry.  Once the leaves were dry, each one was glued onto the front of each card to hold the ribbon in place.  I think this recycled project was very successful.  I love the way it looks and know that it will make a perfect hostess gift to take to a holiday party.  Will we ever have  holiday gatherings again?...hopefully soon?


Friday, September 3, 2021

Squirrel Friend Card

My youngest grandson has a stuffed toy squirrel that is his favorite thing to carry around.  It's his sleep aid and thumb-sucking friend.  Because Mr. Squirrel sometimes likes to 'swim' in the toilet, my grandson's parents wisely bought extra squirrels who take turns spinning in the washing machine.  It doesn't seem to bother my grandson to see all the squirrels together.  However, he always seems to be sniffing each squirrel until he finds THE one that makes his thumb taste 'just right'!  In honor of Mr. Squirrel I decided to make an Autumn card.  
I started with a Kraft paper card with envelope and stamped the front with a Hero Arts woodgrain design.  Next I hand cut a freeform tree hole door.  After stamping the Lawn Fawn squirrels, coloring them with Copic pens, and die cutting them, I used foam sticky dots to adhere them to the card. I did the same with the large  Lawn Fawn acorn. I stamped the words and hand cut the strips before applying double stick tape.  This squirrel card was super simple to make and I hope my 1-year-old grandson likes looking at it....maybe he'll even recognize his best friend!


Monday, August 30, 2021

Tie Dyed Washi Paper Upcycled Container

Can you guess what this was before I papered it with hand-dyed washi paper?  It originally held caramel popcorn.  Because it was so sturdy and clean inside (the popcorn was in a plastic bag), I decided that it had to be repurposed.  I also had some old large sheets of plain mulberry washi paper which unfortunately were slightly stained and had tiny bug holes which made them perfect candidates for my tie dyed experiments.  (These papers were purchased at Ben Franklin Crafts many years ago but you should be able to find large sheets of natural colored washi paper at Celebrations (next door to our Mapunapuna HM Ben Franklin Crafts store).   
Here is another view of the same container.  With tie dying every part of every paper will come out different.  To get the tie dye pattern aligned along the container's opening, I first made watercolor paper (the only really large paper I had) templates of the side and two ends.  I used double stick tape to adhere the templates to the tie dyed sheet before cutting out the pieces.  The part that goes around the top of the container was then cut apart from the lower side piece.  

All four pieces were then glued onto the cardboard container with 3 in 1 Beacon glue. 

I am very pleased with how neat and clean this project turned out despite the messy paper dying process which left my hands 'lovely' for days.  Reminder: Wear gloves while dying washi paper!

I used Ken Oliver powder dyes because it is very potent so a little goes a long way.  It's best to put a tiny bit of powder into water and then dipping the paper into the colored liquid or painting on the dye to specific places.
I'm not sure what I will put in this container but most likely it will be a gift container because then I won't need wrapping paper. Hahaha!
I even papered the bottom of the container because there were a UPC code and price sticker which couldn't be removed.  The odd looking paper below is what the washi paper looks like before I apply the dye.  Each little wrapped point of paper is wound up with waxed leather sewing thread which maybe found in the HM BFC leather or beading department.  Normally, when I tie dye fabric I use rubber bands but they would be too abrasive on paper (even though washi paper is very sturdy).  Even if you don't choose to upcycle a cardboard container, tie dying paper is fun.  You never know what the result will be but the pretty papers can easily be used on cards or in scrapbooks. Give it a try....wear gloves!  LOL!