Saturday, March 31, 2012

Okay, I know it is weird...

You know that saying about your mouth writing checks your rear can't cash, well that is me and this layout in a nut shell.  I made a smart aleck comment about black and white going with everything. My child said no and I ended up being challenged to make a layout with these pics and these papers. They so do not go together, but I had to make it work since I was a big mouth. I wanted to enter the Chattering Robin's Challenge, so I used their sketch and this odd combo and here is what I came up with. They don't show well in these awful pictures, but I used some light blue dew drops that look green sitting on the yellow paper. I really like the sketch, so I am sure I will use it on another layout, but I promise to use photos and papers that go together next time.

Friday, March 30, 2012

Scrapbook Challenge

Every two weeks there is a new scrapbook challenge over at Erica's Craft Room. I have to say I procrastinated and am down to the wire. Only three hours left and I am just now getting mine posted. Here is the sketch that had to be used and the colors were pastel yellow, pastel green, and another color of your choice. I chose pink.
I was actually looking for some other photos this morning and came across these from Easter 2005. Nick was so cute, I had to use this sketch and get them scrapped. Here is my take on the sketch. The lighting is awful as it is raining here, but I wanted to get this posted in time for the challenge.
I can't give you all the details, as I used CCR to lay it out. The bunny and grass are from everyday paper dolls, the letters are Don Juan, and the eggs are A Child's Year.
I journaled on an egg and decorated the other eggs with stickles. You can see I added a little peeled paint distress ink to the grass.

I also added a bit of distress ink to the letters and edges of the paper. Over all I like it. It was a quick easy layout. There are still a few hours to get in on this challenge, so head on over to Erica's Blog and enter. The winner of the challenge will win a Cricut Cartridge. Feel free to leave me comments.

Thursday, March 29, 2012

A Little Card Set

Hi everyone! I could hardly wait to share this project with you. I got the cutest papers from the Erica's Craft Room Store. They are from the BoBunny Sweet Tooth Collection. I made a couple of birthday cards and a couple of notecards.

On the first card I did a fussy cut around the cake and added a Jillibean Soup Label that I also got from Erica (did I tell you she carries some great products and has super customer service?). How is this for a quick easy card?

For the next one, I used a stamp amd my Zing embossing powders. I am still not great with embossing, but I am getting better.
This one uses the embossing again and a few fussy cut flowers from the back side of the polka dotted paper.
The last one has a cricut cut flower from Forever Young, I added some stickles and called it done. These were super easy and super quick. All four only took about 15 minutes. It literally took longer for the stickles to dry than it did to make the cards. I hope you like them.

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Would You Ever Guess Wednesday

It is Would You Ever Guess Wednesday over at Erica's Craft Room. On Wednesdays we feature projects using the Feature keys on the cartridges. I will admit these are keys I often forget about when using my carts. It is too much of a hassle to pull out the book and flip through the pages. Yes, I admit to being lazy. Anyway Cricut Craft Room has changed that for me. I didn't think is would make a difference for me since I have a Gypsy, but being able to see the mat and the images to choose from make it so much easier to use. It is also nice to look at it on my big laptop screen. Anyway... I am getting sidetracked. The carts I used the feature keys on were Twinkle Toes and Lyrical Letters, but I hope when people look at this project they aren't thinking Independence Day either.

Here is the completed project, but be sure to read on to see what I did and get a few easy tips to make using your Cricut even more enjoyable.
The wreath came for The Dollar Tree. My Dollar Tree normally has these wicker wreaths and for a buck they make a great base. I knew I wanted some flowers and a little banner, so I started flipping through papers. I came across these gorgeous papers I purchased from Erica's Craft Room Store. They are Kaisercraft papers from the Bonjour Collection.
The papers are double sided and these are the backs. Both sides are just gorgeous.

I already have a saved file in CCR that I use to make my crumpled flowers that I want to lie relatively flat. I used a flowers off the Mother's Day Bouquet cartridge, but you could use any scalloped circle from any of the carts. A friend asked why I would do this in CCR and not just use the cart alone. Well I positioned the scallops so that 2 each of four different sizes would fit in a 6x6 area of the mat. This allows me to use the papers out of the 6x6 stacks. Since I am not much of a card maker, I don't really use my 6x6 stacks and I have been given several and this has me using them. I then cut the paper for the flowers and went ahead and made them. Now it was time to start making the banner. I do not own the banner cart or any of the carts that have the cute little banners, but I was sure I could find a way to make one. I opened CCR and started searching through the images. I found a banner in Independence Day, but it didn't have a top layer. I just resized it in CCR. It was very simple to do. Erica is going to have a CCR tutorial on Ustream very soon, but in the meantime if you can't figure out CCR go through the tutorials in the program. There is a tutorial tab in the upper right corner once you are logged into CCR. I wanted a little scallop across the top of my banner pieces and thought I had seen something in Twinkle Toes that would work. I used the layer of the stage curtain and used the hide and contour option to hide the actual drape panels. I then lined it up to resize it on the mat. I ended up with three layers on my mat, but in CCR you can see all of them at the same time. Here is what my screen looked like.
I then just glued the pieces together using Scotch Quick dry Adhesive. I love how it works on projects like this. I needed letter and needed them small. I used to hate cutting small letters because they would rip or not cut well. I finally found a font that is my go to font for itty bitty letters. Lyrical Letters has a feature called Jumbo and it is perfect for really small letters. These were cut at 1/2 an inch and they cut beautifully.
Now is was time to attach to the wreath. I pulled out some bakers twine and hot glued the pennants to it. I simply made a line of glue on the top part of the pennant and then pressed onto the twine laying on my nonstick mat, so I didn't burn my fingers. Then I hot glued the twine and the flowers to the wreath. I used a sheer ribbon to hang it. Here are a couple of close ups.

I hope you enjoyed my project. Feel free to follow me as I will have a new DT project every week. I love comments, so don't be shy. Have a super Wednesday!

To see more projects like mine head over to Erica's Craft Room and check out all of today's projects.

Sunday, March 18, 2012

How I Got Started With Cricut or Confessions of a Scrapjunky

Erica has challenged everyone to share how they got started with Cricut. Being the incredibly generous person that she is, she is giving the people that link up their story a chance to win the incredible Sophie cartridge. If you haven’t been to Erica’s site, head over there now. You can read my story later. Trust me you need to see all the incredible challenges and projects posted there. She is also part of a Blog Hop this weekend and giving away another cartridge for that.
                Okay, back to my story. At the time people I knew were first starting to buy Cricuts, they were the personal cutter. Back then our local scrapbook store, Lisa’s Angels in the Attic, was still open. There was a group of us that gathered most Friday nights and scrapped. We had a fabulous time. A couple of the ladies bought the personal cutter and I was not impressed. They tore so much paper and spent three times as long cutting out a word as it took me to whip out my Sidekick and sizzlet alphabets. I couldn’t understand what all the fuss was about. Now keep in mind I have only watched HSN once in my life and that was for 15 minutes during a National Scrapbook Day event. I don’t watch it because I know I will want things and am too cheap to buy them. So, I went ages without sad about not having a Cricut. My husband and daughter are infomercial junkies and he kept asking me why I wasn’t getting one. I told him I wasn’t wasting my money.
                Okay, fast-forward a couple of years. The LSS closed down and one of my old scrap buddies invites me to a retreat. I really needed a getaway and it was amazing. One of the most incredible things that happened was I saw ladies using the Expression effectively. These ladies knew what they were doing.  They understood speed, pressure, and blade depth. I was amazed. I wanted that flexibility. I decided right then that I was buying an expression. There was only one problem…I am such a cheapskate. There was no way I was spending that much money one something. The retreat was in November and that Black Friday was the 1st one where Walmart had the Expressions and carts. I still wouldn’t spend the money. I did buy a cartridge though. I had seen ladies using the paperdolls cartridge and knew I would want it.
                I still didn’t know how I was going to get a Cricut for what I was willing to spend. I started watching Ebay. I bought a couple more carts at a REALLY good deal. I haven’t found those deals in a long time though. I finally ended up with a brand new machine and four carts for about what Walmart was selling it for on Black Friday. By Christmas I had a Cricut and was in love with it. I use it at least a couple of times a week. It stays out. She never gets put away. She doesn’t like the dark cabinet, so she stays out on my counter. I got tired of lugging her back and forth to my classroom, so I convinced my principal to buy two for the school. One of them lives in my classroom, so I can use her whenever I want.
                I can’t believe I once thought a Cricut was a waste of money. It is one of the best investments I ever made. My husband even bought me a heat press because of the Cricut. I have made baseball uniforms and coach’s shirts. My kids use it. My hubby is even the master of Design Studio in our house. He designs things in it for his baseball and softball teams. I didn’t have a font with the right H for the front of their batting helmets, so he went in and designed one using pieces of different letters. They team loved them. I can’t see our house being without a Cricut ever again. My husband replaced the TV within an hour of it going out. I think he would be even quicker with my Cricut.

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Viva las Vegas Design Team Audition

Well, do you ever do something and then go what the heck was I thinking? Well, here I sit going what the heck was I thinking? I know what I was thinking. I was thinking, "Wow they have fabulous images!" "Oh, I want to work with Terri." "Oh, I want to be on the design team." I forgot the part where I don't really like to color and I didn't have any Viva Las Vegas. I have some now because they sent me some for having their link on my blog. Anyway... add to the being rear ended and not being able to move much less craft and my audition projects did not come to fruition. I had planned to get my project done this weekend and then I decided to sweep. That was not the smartest thing after the accident. I literally could not straighten up. I was stuck hunched over. I went back to the doctor yesterday. They gave me physical therapy exercises and new muscle relaxers and a brand new anti-inflammatory drug that my insurance doesn't cover. I am able to move now, but leaning over my craft counter was more than I could do tonight. So, long story short is that I do not have a new wonderful project to share. I figured I would repost an old one that I think best captures my stamping style. I hope everyone has a wonderful day and good luck to all the people trying out for the Viva Las Vegas design team.

Monday, March 5, 2012

Monday Magic

Okay, I am going to try something new. I want to post something each Monday. I want to play with something I already have on hand and make a little crafty magic. I hope to do it ever Monday, but you never know with me. I decided to start with flowers. I have been suffering from cartridge envy recently. It seems like everywhere I turn someone is doing a project with the Art Philosophy cartridge and I don't have it. It bothered me for a while, but I decided this weekend that I need to pull out the cartridges I already own and make some magic.

I have the Mother's Day Bouquet Cartridge and don't use it nearly enough. I decided to pick one of the flowers on it and play a little. I picked the flower that is the third key on the top row. I cut it at 2 1/2, 2, 1 1/2, and 1 inches. I used a dry embossing tool to cup the center a little. Then I kind of rolled the petals back a bit to give it more dimension. Then I glued the layers together.
 You can see it is still pretty flat. Blah would be a good description. I looked over my counter and immediately saw stickles. I looked at teh colors for a few minutes and decided on Waterfall. I just added it along the edges of the petals and then made a center out of stickles.It makes the flower much more interesting.
 That made it nice and glittery, but the whole point of magic is to see how it changes things. I decided I needed to try another look. I grabbed a French Blue cats eye chalk pad and hit the edges of the petals before gluing them together. I love the depth it gave to the flower. I added some stickles just to the center.
You can see these are the same color paper, same cuts, same curling of the petals, but they look completely different. Here is a pic of all three side by side.
I couldn't stop there. I had to try it in a different color. Here is the same flower, but in yellow. I used Mustard seed distress ink and applied it direct pad to paper. I then glued it together and put a gem in the center. I love how it came out.
If you are like me, you have a ton of supplies sitting around not using them. Get them out and play with them. Things you already have sitting around can make a huge difference in your projects. I took one layer and lined it with several different colors of stickles. Think about how much that would change the look of the finished project.
So go play with some of the things you already have and make some crafty magic.

Sunday, March 4, 2012

A Card, Yes you read that right... a card!

Okay, I don't consider myself a card maker. I have decided it would be beneficial to become a card maker and keep some cards on hand. I was doing some blog surfing this weekend and came across one of the best blogs I have visited in a while. It is My Cricut Craft Room: Erica's Craft Room . There is so much going on at this blog. Daily postings, Challenges, Swaps, and more... I decided to create the card for their current card challenge. I used two cartridges to make this card: Forever Young, Twinkle Toes, and Cricut Craft Room Basics. The two actual carts had never been used. They were still wrapped in the plastic shell. They probably still would not have been used it it were not for the free Cricut Craft Room. I went into CCR and started designing the card. It is really an easy program to use. Anyway... I laid out the card and then did the cutting. When I was looking for a rectangle with rounded corners, I found one on Twinkle Toes. I was looking for a person or animal to put on the card and found one in Forever Young. I was excited, because I was going to use not one but two carts I hadn't used before. It is one of my goals to use my cricut more.

Those of you that know me know I LOVE Echo Park papers. I wanted to use the Be Mine collection again they are great papers even though it is not Valentine's Day. I cut out the individual layers. I made the base out of Recollections black paper, as well as the lady and the word. Once I had it all layered, I added some black diamond and diamond dust stickles. What do you think? Head on over the Erica's blog and join the challenge yourself.
Have a super week and check back soon. I will be posting things more often.

Friday, March 2, 2012

The Happiest Place on Earth

Okay, before you expect a post about Disney Land shift mental gears. Have you ever walked into a room and met someone that you thought had to be one of the kindest most genuine people you have ever met? Well, that happened to me times two. I walked into a scrapbook store before it even opened and the owners Faith and Arnie welcomed me with open arms. They are two incredibly wonderful people. They have created a crafting oasis. A place where you can go to buy scrap supplies, crop, or just stop and chat. Not all of you can run to Haughton,LA to meet them, but you can stop by their new online store. They have just recently opened their e-doors, but they are adding tons of product and have some of those items other places are sold out of already. So head on over to The Haughton House and tell them Kathy Ritchie sent you.