Sunday, December 14, 2014

The most wonderful time of the year

I love Christmas! The lights, the music, the decorations. People are nicer, they smile more, they greet you with a pleasant Merry Christmas or Happy Holidays. The whole season fills me with happiness.

I made a promise to myself this year that I was not going to stress during the holidays. I would take each day as it came and get done what I could and just enjoy it.

I am happy to say that it worked!

My cards were mailed on December 1.
My shopping is done.
Everything that needs to be shipped is wrapped and packed and sitting by the door to go out tomorrow.
My tree went up last night.
My house has been decorated since the weekend after Thanksgiving (inside and out).

The only things left on my list are to bake the Russian Tea Ball cookies my husband loves and to make the Chex Party mix. Oh yeah, and make a Christmas card for my husband (let's hope I don't forget that one lol)

With 10 days left to do them, I think I am in very good shape! :-)

I hope everyone else is fairing as well as I am this year.

AND....I made a few things over the past couple weeks. I make sure I get lots of art room time. I think that makes a huge difference in my stress levels. :-)

When decorating the inside of my house, I had to put away my Autumn glass block and wanted a to replace it with a Winter one. I searched on etsy to see if I could find a file that jumped out at me (nothing I put together from Design Space was really rocking my socks).

I found SparkelDigitalDesign. She has lots of wonderful glass block designs. I chose this one. I had planned on using navy blue but didn't have enough so opted for dark red. I love how it turned out.


I think it is adorable and fits in with my decorating style, of vintage and antique toys, really well.
She offers a deal of buy 3 designs get 1 free so I see some shopping in my future. :-)

Vinyl is an addicting thing. You start seeing places all over your house that could use a little bit of sprucing up or just a touch of whimsy.
Vinyl also makes a very nice stencil.

I used my Explore to cut out vinyl stencils for use with Amour Etch.

I always regretted not buying the glasses that matched my Christmas dishes. Each year for Christmas I have to use my everyday glasses (or a set of maroon wine glasses...don't ask).
I was in Dollar Tree and they have glasses.....green glasses.....for Christmas.
I light bulb went off and I now have a set of green glasses that look beautiful with my dishes.


Each glass is etched with a different image. (I etched 4 but only had 2 done at the time I took the picture) I wanted them all etched but thought having them all the same would be boring. Besides, my dishes are fun not serious with a big Christmas tree and train and gifts (Pfaltzgraph Christmas Heritage) So why shouldn't my glasses be fun too?

The images are from Anna Griffin's Christmas Kitsch cartridge. (I will try to remember to get a picture of the other 2 lol)

And finally, I finished up my last Christmas present on Friday night.

My mom collects little boxes. All types and shapes and styles. I search for cute and different ones for her all the time. I don't think that I have ever made one for her. Although she has been collecting them for over 30 years so I probably have made her at least one or two over the years but cannot remember lol

I took an old mint tin, lightly sanded it then sprayed it with Rust-Oleum's white Clean Metal Primer.
I sponged alcohol inks on the edges to create a nice finish.


Does this door make you want to look inside? I hope so because this is the front of the tin.
I used the Explore Print Then Cut to make the door. I added a fancy glass bead brad for the door knob and mounted the door on chip board so it stands out a bit.
I found a stone wall image online and used that for my background on the front and back of the box.
I used Distress Inks (Tea Dye and Walnut Stain) to darken the edges.


This is the back. I added the little dandelion growing at the bottom. It leaves no hint of what might be inside.


Everything inside was cut with the Explore, including the blue background pieces. I wish I had thought to measure and cut them this way with my first tin. It was such a pain trying to get a good fit just eye-balling it!

There is a lovely rose trellis on the left. I used a grid background cut from the CTMH Artbooking cartridge.
The roses came from Picturesque.

One the right we have gorgeous sunflowers and fuchsia tulips from Walk In My Garden. The purple tulips are from Create a Critter.
There is a little white picket fence separating the sunflowers from the tulips. The full image has a rooster sitting on the fence. I used the slice feature to remove him. The fence is from Wall D├ęcor & More.
And finally there is grass growing behind the fence from CTMH Artbooking.

I needle felted the bunny using some tan alpaca fleece with little bits of merino for his tummy, nose and eyes. He looks very happy in his flower garden home.

I hope she likes it. I finished it Friday night and packed it up Saturday morning. I must have gone and opened that little tin a dozen times to take 'one last look'. I finally kissed the bunny good-bye and wrapped it up. :-)

Just in case I don't get back here beforehand...




Merry Christmas to you all and happy crafting in the New Year!





Sunday, November 30, 2014

It has been a BUSY week!

This past week was a very hectic week. I am not talking about Thanksgiving, I only had to supply the pie and rolls. And Black Friday was probably the most relaxing day I had (and I was out shopping! lol)

This past week was my annual Christmas baking week. I try to take this week off from work every year so that I can get all my Christmas cookies baked and stored in the freezer.

Some years I am more productive than others but this one wasn't too bad. :-)

I baked 6 varieties of cookies and a batch of scones!


We have molasses Scottie Dog Spritz, Pumpkin scones, Chocolate Chip, Miniature Peanut Butter Cups, Traditional Shortbread, Christmas Tree Spritz and Molasses Crinkles. Yum!!!

I know what you are thinking,  6 batches of cookies is really not that many spread over a week. And I agree. But I got bored with baking about halfway through the week and parked my butt in my craft room for a while. I was on vacation after all!


Cricut was having a huge sale on digital cartridges AND I had a $10 off coupon for digital so I picked up the Winter Woodland cart for somewhere around $5. And played! These 2 cards are made entirely from that cartridge. And I added glitter! I very rarely use glitter but these just seemed to be begging for it. :-)

The backgrounds are both embossed with Darice folders. On the left is the Snow Background, on the right is the Snow Swirl. I then lightly rubbed them with CTMH White Daisy pigment ink to make the snowflakes stand out. I love them and I hope the recipients do too. :-)


Have you noticed that owls are back? They were really popular in the 70s. You saw them everywhere....and I couldn't stand them! But they have flown back into fashion and now I love them. Cricut has lots of adorable owls in their images like this little guy on the left from one of the Create a Critter carts. I used Crystal Lacquer on his (her?) ornament to make it shiny.
And how about this CUTE little guy from Miss Kate's Cuttables on the right? Hoo can resist those eyes?


I worked on a gift too. This is a small glass block (only 5 inches) that I made for my parents. I frosted the block with Armour Etch and then applied the vinyl. I want to mail it out in the next couple days so they can display it during the holidays. The lights are battery powered and only 15 lights on the string which is nice for such a small block.

But I am not done yet!

In a moment of relaxing, I decided to browse Pinterest. Within a few moments I saw a pin from a friend that sent me running back into my craft room. The pin was of a Christmas card I think....although I am not entirely sure as it was a dead link so I couldn't read about it. But it triggered me into a vinyl project.


Here is my front door. I think it looks great. Hubby likes it but is bummed that he can't hang up a wreath (because it would almost completely cover the vinyl). Oh well, too bad. Maybe next year lol

You would think that would be enough for a week (well not even a full week.....from Saturday to Wednesday!) but NO. That darn Pinterest!!!

A friend keeps pinning altered Altoid tins....and they are so cool! I had to give it a try.


I created the interior first (thinking I would probably damage the exterior if I did it first)

I used my Cricut Print then Cut feature to cut out the tree. No more fussy cutting by hand for me!
The window is from the Christmas (Noel) cartridge. I used black paper for the background and splattered it with white acrylic paint for snow.

I needled felted the teddy bear and the gift box is cut from the Sweet Tooth Boxes cartridge. I was amazed that the Explore could cut it so small. The box is under an inch tall! ( I ended up remaking the box as it was too large to close the tin. I recut the same image but now the box is about 1/2" tall!)

The tree and Santa images are from Victorian Images Volume Two clipart CD from Summertown Sun. It is full of thousands of Victorian images and cards for Christmas, New Years, Thanksgiving, Halloween, July Fourth & Patriotic, Devotional and Religious images. If you ever see it on eBay (which is where they sell all their CDs) grab it. You will not be sorry! You can find their eBay store here. No affiliation, just love their stuff! Very high quality!



This is the front of the tin. Do you have any idea how hard it is to photograph shiny metal? lol

I used foil tape (found in the furnace duct work department of Home Depot and probably other hardware stores). It is really foil or tin tape (the edges can very sharp so watch out). It is super sticky on the back. You can read a tutorial on how to apply it to your lid here.

I embossed a portrait of a vintage Santa (another image from my clipart CD).

I love how it all came together and I am thinking I need to get busy and create some of these for gifts.

I guess I better go get busy crafting! I hope everyone has recovered from too much turkey and too much shopping. Now get back in those craft rooms and get those presents done! ;-)




Friday, November 14, 2014

I am addicted to Pinterest!

My muse has been on vacation for the past few weeks. I blame the training at work. I know I didn't want to stick around so it's no surprise that my muse took off on a holiday.

All week I have been longing to get back into my art room and create. And yet, lately, I haven't been able to come up with anything new and different.

That's is where Pinterest comes in. I get bored and uninspired so I begin browsing, hoping something will jump-start my imagination.

I came across this pin from http://lescrapdaligali.over-blog.com

A clear tag! How cool is that?!
I figured I would make one after work today....but this turned out to just be a jump-start for me.

I have lot of Cricut cartridges. And they all come in plastic boxes that you have to cut open. I save the plastic from the front and back of the boxes. You just never know when you might need some clear plastic....like today :-)

I came up with an idea that instead of a totally clear tag, I would create a scene with a window.


I cut out 2 tags. One for the front of my tag, the other for the back and sliced a rectangle out of each one to create a window.
This is the front tag, the front window frame and a piece of the packaging plastic.

I centered and glued the window frame then used my ATG to place the plastic.


I am creating a winter scene and I want snow building up on the window panes.
I used painters tape and taped off the panes. I then pounced acrylic paint onto the plastic. (the X is to remind me which side of the window I want the snow)


Still working on the back of the window I headed out into the storm to gather more snow.
Ok, I grabbed an old paint brush and splattered up a good blizzard. :-)

But I realized that if the tag is handled much the 'snow' can scrape off the plastic. So I taped down another layer of plastic for protection.

Doesn't it look like a snowy night?



Time to add the back tag. I first embossed it with the stripes folder from Cuttlebug's Retro Kitchen set. And then splattered it with snow.


The tree also received a dusting of snow as well as some shading on the branches which will be seen through the window.

Time to assemble the back.
I free-handed the snow on the ground and lightly shaded the bottom layer (although you can't see it very well).
And I added the cute little bird.


Now to assemble the front!

I dry brushed some acrylic gold paint to the layers of the tree.


Then decorated it, gave it a cute pot to stand in and added Minnie relaxing and taking a bath.

I free-handed the baseboard and floor (which was embossed with CTMH stripes folder).


I can't decide if it looks better against a dark or light background as different things show up against each.


I am on the fence about the tree. I think I need a more realistic looking one. But other than that I am really happy with it.

Here is a list of all the cartridges I used:

Tag: CTMH Art Philosophy
Window Frame: Christmas
Christmas Tree: Winter Frolic
Outdoor tree: Mini Monsters
Bird: Straight From the Next
Cat: Meow
Pot: Walk in My Garden
Holly (which is up under the bow): Joys of the Season

Here is my Design Space file if you want to try one yourself
https://us.cricut.com/design#/canvas/project/22130102

And if you would like to purchase the Art Philosophy cartridge you can do so here.

I hope you all find some creative time for yourselves. It keeps us sane as the holiday rush begins. (and I have not even begun shopping yet!!!!)

Until next time.... :-)








Saturday, November 08, 2014

So glad to be back!

I told you all about my computer issues the last time I was here.
Well, right after that my employer had me go through training for a new skill set. UGH!

Don't get me wrong, I love learning new things and the more I know the more secure my job is BUT....3 weeks of sitting and listening to lectures, taking tests and being audited on my performance makes for very LONG and STRESSFUL days!!!

I have had almost zero art time!

But yesterday training ended so now I am FREE!!!!!

Hubby's birthday fell right in the middle of my training time so I had to squeeze in a few minutes every day for a week to complete part of his gift.


My husband collects, restores and uses vintage and antique 35mm cameras so I thought this box from SVG Cuts would be the perfect gift.  It comes from the Instant Memories kit. I thought it was going to be difficult but it went together really quick (it would have been much quicker if I had more than 30 minutes to work on it each day but such is life).  BTW hubby LOVED it!  :-)

I didn't have time to make anything else during my training time....until this past Thursday night. I was so stressed out from class that I told hubby I was going to lock myself in my craft room or punch something. He agreed that I needed some major ME time and didn't argue. :-)

Over on the Let's Learn Cricut Explore facebook group they are having a challenge for the month of November. You have to use the new Slice feature in your project.  I like the slice feature and have used it off and on since it was released over a month ago so I decided to make something and enter the challenge.


I used the slice 3 times on this card.
I used a circle from the Celebration cart to slice a hole in the top of the snowflake to turn it into an ornament.
I then used an oval from the Cricut Craft Room Basics to slice the opening in gold ornament.
And then I sliced an oval in an oval to make the blue frame on the gold ornament.

Slice Slice Slice....I feel like a ninja!  heehee

The cuts from this card are:
Gold Ornament: Anna Griffin's Seasonal Soirees
Snowflake: Christmas
Blue on Blue ornament: Anna Griffin's Winter Wonderland
Oval: Craft Room Basics
Circle: Celebrations (but Craft Room Basics has one too)
Rectangle: George and Basic Shapes (and again, Craft Room basics probably has one)
Holy Family: SVG I made myself :-)

I embossed the background with Darice's Snowflake background and the bakers twine comes from Close To My Heart.

Turns out that making one card was not enough to completely relieve my stress....so I made another!


And since I was slicing, I sliced all those snowflakes out of the blue background. No gluing down all those little points :-)

I couldn't tell you where all those snowflakes came from. I just searched through My Images in Design Space for 'snowflake' and came up with dozens. (I own something like 10 Christmas carts lol)

The snowman is from A Quilted Christmas. I will say that I had to do a little tweaking on him. The image groups his nose, scarf and buttons onto one cut (thus 1 color) which I thought was ugly and boring. Beside, who's nose is the same color as their scarf and buttons??? (it isn't really obvious in the photo but his nose is orange and his scarf is bright red....not the same color! lol)

So, I used the Hide Contour feature and split them apart so that I could make each part a different color.

I embossed his scarf with a Cuttlebug border folder from the Organic Flourish set.

Yesterday I was FINALLY released from training (I had 100% accuracy on all my audits and tests in case you were wondering lol)

I celebrated by making a fun card....probably just for me since the subject matter is one of my all time favorites.


Rudolph and Clarice!

I have been watching Rudolph every year since it first began. I can even remember my dad plopping me in front of the TV all excited about a Christmas show that was coming on (it was a totally new thing back then). I think I was 4.

No Christmas season is complete without Rudolph! I own it on VHS and 2 different DVDs (I don't like to take any chances of missing it lol)

The reindeer and tree all come from Miss Kate's cuttables.
They were each the freebie of the day one day this week but you can still get them from Miss Kate. They are now 50 each....still a bargain!

The tree is actually part of the Glittery Trees set which has 3 trees not just this one. :-)

I used Tattered Angels white Chalkboard Glimmer Mist on the snow mound and snow drape on the tree. I also misted the bright green under layer on the tree to tone it down a bit and give it a little shimmer. Tone it down it didn't, give it shimmer it did lol

I then used chalks to add a little faint blue shadowing under the tree and reindeer to ground them.....no flying around yet Rudolph!  (BTW why do only the male reindeer fly?)

Don't forget to mail your Thanksgiving cards! You worked so hard on them you want to make sure you get them sent.  :-)

Remember, as we move into the hectic holiday season, to take at least a few minutes a day to just relax and enjoy the moment.

Until next time. :-)





Sunday, October 19, 2014

I have a love/hate relationship with computers

This has been a very stressful week!

Tuesday night, while I was asleep, Windows did an update....and crashed my computer! AAAAAGGGHHHHHH!!!!!

It took several days of trial, error and cussing for hubby to finally determine the only way to restore me to the modern age was to reset my computer back to factory settings. You have no idea how much you rely on your computer or how much info you have stored on there until it is gone!

Thankfully we do back-ups on a regular basis and as it so happens my computer had been backed up the day before so I lost passwords and such but none of my pictures or documents. THANK GOODNESS!

We are slowly reinstalling programs but right now I only have the bare minimum going on.

My biggest loss? My contact lists. For some reason, hubby never set it to have those backed up. So, if we are friends and I normally email you from my Tunnel13 account, unless you email me, you will never hear from me again. Sorry. :-(

Since everything I have been doing has been on my Cricut Explore which has to have the computer to work, I was out of creating mode for several days. I could have gone old school and used my Expression but I have to admit that I am not sure I could even do that. I was so used to using the Cricut Craft Room on my Expression that I haven't used handbooks and overlays in over a year! lol

Instead I spent time thinking about what I would like to make. And my brain moved to the Print then Cut feature and how I am not as giddy about it as everyone else and why is that? Well, it just seemed to not be something I would ever use. That is until I had one of those V8 moments.

If you have been around here for a year or more then you know I used to make lots of ATCs and such (damn Cricut for distracting me all this time! lol) And I used clipart A LOT! Well, DUH, my Explore can send those to the printer and then cut those out for me! Why didn't this dawn on me before???

I counted, I have 23 clip art CDs! I need to haul those puppies out and get busy!  :-)

As soon as hubby got the computer working again I reinstalled Cricut Design Space and had him install my Photoshop Elements and the printer and I was off and running. Yay!


 

Both of these angels come from the Victorian Images Volume Two CD by SummertownSun. I think they now sell on eBay under the user name of Lunagirl. If you like Victorian era cards and photos you need to check them out. The image quality is wonderful and their prices were always very good.

The Volume 2 CD has holiday cards and images for Christmas, New Years, Thanksgiving, Halloween, July 4th and Patriotic, Devotional and Religious images. The have other holidays on different CDs.

These angels were stand alone images (no background) so I thought they would be an easy place to start. The explore can accept jpg and png files. The CD has all jpgs so you can load them right into Design Space or, in my case, I lightened the color a bit first in Photoshop Elements, because my printer prints really dark, and then saved them and moved them into CDS.

I think the Explore did a fantastic job cutting them. It cut every little bump and ruffle far better than I could lol

And last week I lied, not intentionally. lol  I realized that I still needed another Thanksgiving card. I was so sure I was done with Thanksgiving. Obviously since I have already started my Christmas cards (see angels above lol)


I found this step card file at Pretty Paper Pretty Ribbons.
The Turkey is from My Community and the 'Thanksgiving' text is from Close To My Heart Artiste

It was a quick and easy card that looks really cute on display.

I have one more goodie to share.


The new Anna Griffin Christmas Kitsch cartridge arrived while I was in computer limbo. Talk about chomping at the bit to cut something!
This adorable snowman and the Merry Christmas text are both from that new cart. It has lots of wonderful vintage (30s-50s) images and card designs.

I thought he would enjoy a good snow storm so I embossed the background with Darice's Snowflake folder and then lightly sanded to expose the white core of the cardstock.
I love it!

I hope I get a few minutes of crafting time this week but I'm not too sure it will happen. My employer is sending me into a training class for the next 3 weeks. Ugh! Wish me luck. lol

I hope you all have a wonderful week.

Sunday, October 12, 2014

How can I be behind if it is only October???

It bugs me that all the stores have put out their Christmas displays and we haven't even celebrated Halloween yet?  Christmas ornaments mixed in with the Halloween candy is just wrong!  It makes me feel like I am behind and I have to stop myself from going into panic mode. Hmm, is that it? Are they pushing our subconscious into thinking we are running behind to send us into a panicked shopping frenzy? OMG I think that's it!

Well I am NOT behind! As a matter of fact, I am ahead!
I mailed my Halloween cards this past week and last night I finished the last of my Thanksgiving cards and have already begun designs for my Christmas cards. (my card list only has around 20 names so I have plenty of time to get them done).
Shopping...well that is another story but you can't go shopping if you have no idea what to buy people lol

So I have a few cards to share today. (of course I do, it seems like that is the only creative outlet my mind has these days)

I found out that my college roommate went and got married (secretly) so even though it happened over the summer I still wanted to send her a little something.


This is the Cake box card from the SVG Cuts Autumn box card set.  When I bought this set I honestly thought I would never use this design and yet, here it is lol

Just like the Thanksgiving box, it has gorgeous battenburg lace cuts. And the little flowers add just the right simple yet elegant touch.  I tinted my flowers using watercolor pencils and glitter glue dots in the centers.
I hope my old roomie likes it.

For Halloween I adopted the practice of just making a stack of cards. An idea came to me, I created a card. So everyone got something different. I really liked that. I didn't get bored with making them (as I have in past years....the same card over and over and over UGH!) so I am using that idea again for Thanksgiving and Christmas.

Here are my last 2 Thanksgiving cards of the season.


Again from the SVG Cuts Autumn box card set this is the Fall Leaves box card. It is a mixture of printed and plain cardstocks and I shaded the leaves with chalks....none of which shows in the photo lol


And my favorite of the week....from the same box card set, the Apple Crate box. Isn't this adorable?!
I used several printed cardstocks for the crate and sign and I shaded all the apples with chalks and added highlights with a white Prismacolor pencil. This one is going to be really hard to let go. I may have to make one for myself!

But we have more than just Thanksgiving coming up. My sister's birthday falls on Thanksgiving day this year.


Sometimes she likes cute, sometimes not so I have no clue how this card will be received lol

This gift box image comes from Birthday Bash. The text is included in the image but they show it as horizontal. I thought it looked better on an angle....maybe because of the dots on the paper. Also, I noticed that I hadn't glued on the dot for the 'i'. I finally found it this morning and got that sucker glued on! lol

The text didn't have a shadow but it really needed one to stand out with those dots so I duplicated the layer, did 'hide contour' to get rid of the bow and cut the words from black cardstock and used them like a drop shadow.


So here is the cute part that I am not sure how she will handle lol
The card base is from the new Close To My Heart Artfully Sent cartridge. I wanted to make a birthday pop-up card. The cartridge has full card images but you can mix and match or delete parts completely as I did here. The card had 3 cupcakes.

I removed the cupcakes and added my smiling birthday cake which comes from Simply Charmed. I embossed the icing to give it that swirl and added shading to the cake and candle flames with chalks. I then attached him to the pop-up square using a wobble...yeah I might have gone too far with the cute on this one lol

The confetti is called 'party horn' and also from Simply Charmed. I duplicated it a couple times to get extra confetti to toss around. :-) 


So, now onto Christmas....well the cards anyway. :-)
Enjoy your week, don't go into panic mode and make time to create!

Sunday, September 28, 2014

Creating keeps me sane

I have found that if I am stressed out the best thing to help me relax is to jump into a project. And if I can't get home to my art room? I create in my head....I have assembled so many cards in my head that if I could have actually been making them I could open my own card store lol

I thought that I hadn't really had time to make anything over the last 2 weeks and yet when I downloaded my pictures I found out that I had been busy after all....yay me! And yay you if you like seeing what I have been making. :-)

Hubby wants to start decorating for Halloween so I knew I needed to get this little gem made before he started so I would be sure to have a place to display it.


This is haunted housed from the Elmhurst Hollow set at SVG Cuts.  It is 8 1/4" tall including the little points on top. It looks really complex and yet I put it together in just a couple hours (that is including picking the papers which is always the hardest part!)


It is assembled in 3 sections and has openings in the back so you can add battery operated tea lights.
You can see in the photo that I added embossing to the chimney and window boards.
I also rubbed distress inks over all the corners and edges to give it more of a dark look but that doesn't really seem to show up much in the pictures.


A couple weeks ago my friend Helen told me if I made one of the SVG Cuts haunted houses that she wanted to see the ghost of a woman peering out of one of the windows.

I stamped this Stamp Clinic image of a Victorian era cleaning woman, on the back of the vellum, using ink that was almost the exact same peachy color as my vellum. When the house is not lit it is very difficult to see her. She really shows up when the candles are glowing....just as any good ghost should. :-)


I think I am becoming addicted to SVG Cuts designs. They are just soooo cool!
This box card is from their latest set Autumn Box Cards. It can be an invitation, place card, greeting card or just a cute decoration. And the file comes with an envelope for mailing this gorgeous card!


I love all the little details like the trim on the plate and pitcher, the layers on the pumpkins, even the battenburg lace on the sides!

I embossed the top layer of the pumpkins slightly so they would have a bit of roundedness (is that even a word? lol) and look a little more 3D.

I had so much fun digging through my papers for this one as these are some of my favorite colors to craft with. :-D



I told you I actually made stuff these past two weeks! lol

I found a couple glass blocks at a yard sale this past summer. $1 each! I couldn't pass them up....but also couldn't decide on what I wanted to put on them. (one of them is still sitting in the garage waiting for inspiration)

I finally decided I wanted to create a fall scene on one so that I could leave it out from September through November.

I frosted the front and back panels using Amour Etch so that the lights wouldn't be glaring when I turned it on.

Here it is unlit so that you can see the details.
The tree is from the October 31st cartridge. I think that is probably the coolest tree image I have! I just love it!!!
The fence, which is actually 2 of the image welded together, is from Happy Hauntings.
The pumpkin comes from Close To My Heart Artbooking.
And the leaves are from Disney Mickey and Friends, Disney Dreams Come True and Close To My Heart Artiste.

I had originally planned to use colored vinyl so that it would look colorful when not lit but went for the silhouette effect instead as I think it is more striking.


And here it is lit with orange mini lights.

Notice the diffused light because of the frosting. It creates a soft glow in the corner of my living room.

I have other blocks I use at Christmas that we have to put in strange places because the glare is so annoying. Guess what I will be doing once I unpack all the Christmas stuff this year?! lol


And lastly, I finally got a chance to try out my new Close To My Heart Artfully Sent cartridge.

 It was just released a couple weeks ago. It is totally geared toward card making so if that is what you like to do, you should check it out.
It has the bases for 5 different card types, Scenes, Pop-ups, Sentiments (which is what the one above is), Sleeve and Pocket cards.

And they are so versatile! My card originally said "Dream" and it was cut out of the base piece. I removed that and had the Explore 'write' Happy Thanksgiving. BTW this card is made with only 2 pieces of paper. The red is red on the front and brown on the back. The little frame is cut from the red piece and how you fold it creates the brown frame. Then you have the cream inside panel with the writing. It is very cool and yet goes together in just a couple minutes.

If you are interested in this cartridge you can check out the link above or click here.
The kit includes the cartridge with over 700 images, 3 exclusive coordinating stamp sets and a full package of White Daisy cardstock!

Happy Crafting!










Saturday, September 13, 2014

I am soooo ready for it to be fall already!!!

I am loving these chilly nights. The temperatures dipping down into the low 50s. Windows open all night. Burrowing down into the blankets and feeling all warm and snuggly. Struggling to make yourself climb out of your warm cocoon every morning to go to work.

But what is up with it going clear up into triple digits in the day time?!!!

I love fall! It is my favorite season. But it needs to just get here already!!!  I do not like how Mother Nature toys with us. Teasing us with these lovely, cool nights just to harass us with these sweltering days.

But I guess I should stop and savor what we have because soon it will be winter and we will all be begging for this hot days again. lol

I really did pop on here today to share my latest project (not just to complain about the weather haha)

If you have been here before you know that I just recently began making 3D projects with my Cricut. I bought my first Cricut in 2007....what on earth took me soooooo long to get into 3D???  Well I will tell you.....the projects just look very intimidating!  But it turns out they really aren't!. Wish someone had told me that years ago! lol

And do you know which projects look the MOST intimidating? The ones from SVG Cuts! They have these amazing houses and boxes and teapots and typewriters and ...  You look at them and your brain says No Way! How on earth do you take simple cardstock and turn it into THAT???

Well they had a big sale for Labor Day and since I had just started 3D and found out that it wasn't as tough as I thought, I took the plunge and bought a few of their kits.

I took yesterday off from work (no not just to play although that is what I ended up doing all day lol) and decided it was time to start a project from one of the sets I had purchased. :-)

I wanted to make something fairly simple since I wasn't sure how easy their pieces might go together and didn't want to waste paper (cause with my lifetime stash heaven forbid I waste a sheet or two! lol)

I picked the Keeper's House from the Seaside set. You can view it here. Hubby and I love lighthouses so that was a natural choice for one of the sets I bought. But I also saw so much potential for the house for any season or holiday.

Today it is no longer a Keeper's House but an Autumn Cottage.

I dove into my stash and found some warm colored papers and cardstocks (that took about an hour! lol) I then loaded my mats and cut everything out and assembled the pieces. I did take about a 20 minute break at some point but from start (picking papers) to finish I think it only took me about 2 1/2 hours. I was not rushing, I had the video on to be sure I was doing things correctly. And it went together even easier than I expected.

Oh, did you know that SVG Cuts has videos showing you step by step how to assemble their projects? How cool is that?!

So here is my house.


Cute isn't it? No clue where the papers came from. I haven't bought printed cardstock in years and then usually from the clearance section after every season lol

But you know I couldn't stop at this point. Now comes the really fun part! Embellishing!!!!!


I added a climbing vines adorned with red, orange and yellow roses. The vines are from the free Creativebug files on Design Space. I had never even heard of it before! But it popped up on my search for vines so either it has always been there and I never noticed or is just free for the week. Either way it was exactly what I needed.  The roses are from Flower Shoppe.
And of course I added pumpkins. The left one is from Disney's Happily Ever After. The one on the right comes from Close To My Heart Artbooking.
Tucker always loved pumpkins so I thought he would like to be included. The cat image is from the Pet Shop cartridge and I colored it to look like Tucker using Prismacolor pencils.
The fence corners are from Picturesque. I think next time I will make them slightly bigger.
The door knob is a brad from BoBunny from the Bugs & Hisses ICandy brads set that I bought at least 5 years ago....probably more lol


This is the left side of the house. Kitty insisted that if I included Tucker that he wanted to be there too. :-)
He is also from the Pet Shop cartridge.
His set of 3 pumpkins is a single image from the Pooh and Friends cartridge.


Here is the right side....and of course Minnie said "Me too" lol
She comes from the Meow cartridge and her pumpkin is from the Thanksgiving cartridge (minus the vines that come on that image).


And finally the back. I think I need something more on the wall but haven't decided what yet. Maybe a window frame? Just to fill the blank space.
Again, more of the pumpkins used on the other sides.
And a tree from Create a Critter. I scored the trunk and folded it so that the tree could be glued to the corner of the house. I think I should have done some shading on the large leaf mass (I did shade the individual leaves but it doesn't show very well in the photo) but I like the effect of the tree on the corner.


Here is a close-up of a couple of my pumpkins. I shade them first with Prismacolor pencils. I then score the lines in the pumpkin from the front using a small stylus. I then flip them over and emboss them with a larger stylus to give them a rounded, 3D effect.


Here is a close-up of Tucker. I still miss that little guy. Smartest little cat I ever met and the best friend I ever had.


Here is Kitty. He really has 1 yellow and one gold eye and is a big fluff ball lol
He is almost 19 years old and still going strong. :-)


And my baby girl, Minnie. She poses like this when she wants to be petted....up on tip-toes, back arched. Cracks me up every time.  :-)
For some reason I forgot to paint her white chin and chest....oops. Sorry Minnie.


And finally, another cool feature. Because this is a box (the roof lifts off) you can put in a battery operated tea light! Isn't that awesome? I had it lit all evening and the lights flickered softly in the windows made me wish I lived there all warm and cozy and ready for fall. :-)

Thank you for stopping by and if you made it this far....I'm sorry. I sure was extremely wording this week wasn't I? LOL 

Have a wonderful, craft filled week! :-)