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Monday, May 31, 2010

Origami Greeting Cards

Happy Memorial Day!

Hope you have had a nice weekend. I did some cleaning, had some fun with my friends, Toni and Susan, and will be having our second cookout for this weekend in about an hour.

Meanwhile, back in Papercrafting Land, I made a few cards this weekend. When I was at New England Book Fair the other day I purchased the book Origami Greeting Cards by Isamu Asahi. I have always been fascinated by origami and dabble in it from time to time. Some origami books just have pictures and symbols for each of the steps and I find them to be confusing. I like the book I purchased because it has pictures of each step along with symbols and text directions that explain the steps.

Origami paper is lightweight and comes in solid and metallic colors as well as in patterns. Sometimes I use lightweight wrapping paper in place of origami paper. I often practice folds with large pieces of copy paper until I fully understand the instructions.

If the instructions call for pieces of paper that are too small for you to comfortably handle, just increase the size of the paper and follow the directions. If you study my photographs you will notice that I have made the same flower in different sizes. Look at the flowerpots. First of all I hadn't made a flowerpot previously, but found it easy to make. I am excited about the paper I used for each of them. See the leaves on them. Doesn't it look as if the leaves are hanging in front of the flowerpots?

Okay, time to start the grill. Will be back tomorrow with other cards to show you.

Saturday, May 29, 2010

Quilts to Cards

Hi Everyone!

I'm taking a break from cleaning to post some more cards. A couple of my friends mentioned they might make some cards during this 3 day weekend so I thought I'd share some ideas with them and with you.

If you live in the Boston area and haven't been to New England Book Fair in Needham, plan to go there when you have time to browse. Robbie and I went there yesterday. I wandered into the Remainders Room to look through the Crafts and Cooking sections. One of the books I found and purchased is Cute as a Button Quilts by Joni Pike. It was marked down to under $6 and yes, Janet, there are more copies of it still on the shelf.

The full size patterns are a little large for a card, but I scanned a couple of them and reduced them and then they were perfect for an A2 card. If you've been following my blog you know that I love quilts and I love paper piecing and many quilt patterns can be used for paper piecing.

I embossed the papers for this house before I cut them. I think the embossing gives the paper a quilted look. Added a heart brad for the door knob and a scrap of felt for the smoke that's coming out of the chimney.

I created this heart flowers card in less than 20 minutes. I cut the 3 sets of stems and leaves out at the same time and did the same thing with the hearts. This time I glued the leaves and flowers to the background paper before I embossed the paper.

The other patterns in the book will have to wait for another day.
Back to cleaning....bummer!


Sky, Water, and Sand

Good Morning!

It's a gorgeous day. The sky is blue and the air feels just right. I am sitting here at my work table watching the birds eating their breakfast. I just saw the most amazing blue jay. He was so "blue"! He was one beautiful bird.

This week's Tuesday Trigger from Moxie Fab World is really sticking in my mind. It's because I love cards with "grids" on them. I constantly create cards with 3, 6, or 9 images mounted on little circles, squares, etc. The card I created this time reminds me of the little 8 piece puzzles I used to play with years ago. The ones where you had to move the squares around to get the numbers in sequence or put the picture together.

I am calling the card, "Sky, Water, and Sand". If you study my background squares you will see starting at the top there are 3 sky squares, followed by 3 water squares, followed by 3 sand squares.

Some of the embellishments I placed on the squares are store bought and I put the others together. The balloons were created from a Martha Stewart balloon punch. I added gold jewelry wire to them for the balloon strings. I was surprised to discover that I don't have a sun stamp or a sun punch so I created the sun from a Martha Stewart cornflower punch. To give it some dimension, I stacked 2 punchouts on top of each other, but sandwiched a pop dot between them. The clouds are cut from felt scraps.

The beach ball is a Recollections sticker. I cut a "wave" and placed it in front of the ball to make it look as if the ball is floating in the water. I used a Fiskars triangle and a Fiskars oval punch to create the sailboat. The fish are Favorite Findings buttons.

The umbrella was created from a circle and scalloped border punch. The seashells are Favorite Findings buttons. The pail is a Recollections sticker and the sea star was cut from an EK Success paper punch. I pressed the sea star into a glue pad and then dipped it in fine glitter to add a little sparkle to it. "Best Fishes" is a stamp from River City Rubber Works.

And that's my card. I am thinking of using it as a retirement card for a friend of mine who loves the beach.

Have a great weekend!

Friday, May 28, 2010

Happy Friday!

Happy Friday Everyone!

Tonight's post is going to be a quick one, but I plan to write some other posts this weekend. The
inspiration for today's card came from a blog that is filled with ideas that I am dying to try. The blog's address is and Carolina is the blogger for that site.

You can see Carolina's card if you click here and scroll down until you see a valentine. I can see all sorts of possibilities for that technique, but for today I created the birthday card that you see here.

I put a small sheet of white tag in the dotty embossing folder and ran it through my Cuttlebug. Then I used a one-inch circle circle punch to cut the white circles. I used a 1.75" scalloped circle punch to create the red circles. I used a Fiskars Rectangle hand punch to punch a hole in each of the circles and then threaded a piece of ribbon through each hole. I put some Scor-tape on the back of the ribbon so that it will stay in place and won't flip over.

The ice cream cones are buttons that my friend Toni gave me. Thanks, Toni! I think they are adorable. I used glue dots to attach them to the circles. "Happy Birthday" is stamped from a clear stamp from a Hampton Arts set of stamps.

Expect to see other cards that use this format as it's quick, easy, and appealing.
Talk to you soon.

Thursday, May 27, 2010

Tuesday Trigger in Card Creations Week

Hi Everyone!

One of the blogs I follow regularly is Cath's Moxie Fab World. I decided to enter her challenge for this week's Tuesday Trigger. This week's challenge is to create a paper crafted project that was inspired by cards created by Betsy Veldman and Jessica Witty.

They both stamped a grid on their cards and embellished the squares they had stamped. I used one of my stamps from the PaperTrey Ink Quilter's Sampler Additions set and stamped onto a sheet of paper from the DCWV Songbird block.

I trimmed each square and mounted them onto a sheet of green tag. I then placed the "quilt" I created in an embossing folder and ran it through my Cuttlebug to give it a textured look.

I stamped the flowers with a daisy stamp from Purple Daisy Designs, embossed them, and then punched them out with an EK Success punch. Purple Daisy Designs designed a series of stamps that work with EK Success punches. I used mini glue dots to attach the flowers to the quilt and then placed a rhinestone in the center of each flower.

The scissors and thread stamps I used are from PaperTrey Ink's Quilter's Sampler set. I wrapped embroidery floss around the thread to add dimension to it. I stamped and colored the scissors to make them look like the Fiskars scissors that are sitting next to me. I added a tiny brad to the scissors.

The "Thank You SEW Much!" stamp is from Stampabilities. I added a blunt needle and some embroidery floss to it.

Hope that you enjoy the card and hope that you will add Moxie Fab World to the blogs that you follow.

I've been very busy creating lately so stop by tomorrow to see more cards.


Thursday, May 20, 2010

Make Your Own Embellishments

Hi Everyone!

I hope that you will be as excited about today's tips as I am. I have some embellishments that I picked up at Michaels that were intended for a child to use. They are very cute, but are a little on the flimsy side. Still, I have used them on some children's birthday cards and they have been well-received by adults and children. While I was planning a class the other night, I took one of those embellishments apart to study it. It was made from a lightweight piece of paper, then a pop dot, then another lightweight piece of paper, then a pop dot, and then a tiny cutout. I decided it would be easy to create similar embellishments, but would make mine sturdier than the ones I purchased.

Here's a photograph of a card I made with dinosaur embellishments that I created. I used my paper trimmer to cut some yellow one-inch squares and my blue Marvy Uchida square punch to cut the green ones. I used my Martha Stewart dinosaur punch to create the dinosaurs. I glued a green square to my card. I put a pop dot in the center of the green square and then put the yellow square on the pop dot. I added a pop dot to the center of the yellow square and then put the dinosaur on the pop dot. I was very happy with the results and how easy it was to create that effect.

Then I studied some of the other store-bought embellishments I have in my stash. I discovered that many of them are made by stacking the same shape on top of each other with some foam or pop dots sandwiched between the shapes. So that is what I did on this card. I used my Martha Stewart butterfly punch and punched out 3 "purple" butterflies. I put 2 small pop dots on the first butterfly and then carefully placed a butterfly on top of those dots. I placed a glue dot in the middle of the second butterfly and then pressed a piece of thin folded green jewelry wire on the glue dot to create antennae for the butterfly. I also added 2 small pop dots to that butterfly and then placed a butterfly on those dots. I put some tiny rhinestones along the middle of the top butterfly. I am excited about the way the butterflies turned out and plan to use that same technique with other shapes.

The nice thing about making your own embellishments is that you can create them from that pile of scraps that you are reluctant to toss out. I have a thin clear storage container that is filled with flowers I punch out when I am too tired to be productive and too awake to go to sleep. I've decided to use other paper punches and punch out lots of dinosaurs, butterflies, ducks, etc. so that I can create more embellishments like the ones I described to you today.

If you have any photographs of embellishments, cards, or other papercrafts that you have created that you'd like to share with us, please e-mail them to me, and I will post them on the blog.

Monday, May 17, 2010

Popsicle Monday

Hi Everyone!
Last night I decided to use some of my sparkly papers to create cards. This "Happy Bird-day to you" card is backed on a paper from the DCWV "SongBird" block. Instead of centering the images I decided to set them off to the side for a change. I also used a larger card than I do most of the time. This time I used a 5" x 7" one. I used one of my square Nestabilities to cut and emboss the white squares.

The Decorative Bird stamps are part of a set of 4 bird stamps from
Hero Arts. I used Twinkling H20s to color the birds. Those paints are easy to use and dry very quickly. The "Happy Bird-day" stamp is from Stampabilities.

The colors of my sparkly yellow, orange, lime and blue papers reminded me of the colors of the popsicles we used to buy at "Charlie’s" when I was a little girl. I looked through my copy of Paper for All Seasons by Sandra Lounsbury Foose and found the popsicle pattern that I wanted. Don’t these cards look good enough to eat? I think they’d make great party invitations.

When the beige paper I used is folded it has beige on the front and back of the card and white on the inside. The author suggests that you cover the front, back, and insides of the beige base with fruit-colored paper, but I chose to only decorate the front. That means there is white inside of the card for stamping and/or writing.

I recently rearranged my work table and ended up adding my small cupcake holder to it. I'm storing some of my brads and buttons on it in the silicone muffin cups that Toni bought for me. I just pick up the muffin cup that I want and place it near me as I work.
Have a great night.

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Paper Quilts

Good Morning Everyone!
I have always admired and loved handmade quilts. I love their vibrant colors and their bold geometries. I love learning the names of the patterns and the stories behind the quilts. I love the idea of quilting bees. Of women (and men) sitting together talking as they stitch.
I’ve never made a real quilt and I probably never will. I am not a seamstress. My mother was a seamstress and my sister, Jeanne, inherited the patience and talent for that skill. That doesn’t stop me from reading about quilts and sometimes purchasing quilting magazines just so I can "ooh" and "aah" over their beauty.

When I was a Kindergarten teacher I made paper quilts with my students at least once a month. When I present a 5 hour teacher training we often make a paper quilt related to the theme of the training.

As I searched for books for my papercrafting passion I was thrilled to discover that Sandra Lounsbury Foose (author of Card Shop and Paper for All Seasons that I wrote about a few blogs ago) wrote a book called Paper Quilts. That is now one of the dog-eared books in my collection as I have torn the patterns out from the back of it to make them easier to photocopy and I have studied the photographs of the quilted cards over and over again.

After Robbie and I had taken our walk yesterday we went to the Concord Bookshop which has become a tradition after we have walked in the Concord area. Need to give that store a plug as their staff is incredibly friendly, helpful, and enthusiastic. In addition to their wonderful collection of books, the store also carries an awesome collection of note pads, bookmarks, postcards, and note cards. I picked up and ended up purchasing a bound collection of postcards called "Amish Quilts". Had to buy it. The photographs of those quilts will inspire many a card for me. It turns out that the patterns for some of the quilts on the postcards happen to be in Paper Quilts book.
So late last night and early this morning I created some quilted cards. The paper I used is once again from the "Citronella" collection for K&Company. This particular pattern has limes and strawberries all over it. I would love to have a tablecloth that looks like that paper. I would love to own an outfit like that paper or a purse or beach bag. Had to make an Around Town Tote from PaperTrey Ink with 2 sheets of it. I think those totes have become my fantasy purses!

I papercraft with Toni more than I do anyone else. As we craft we talk and I remember one of our conversations being that sometimes when we make a card we put patterns together that you’d never think about wearing together, but they look great on a card. That was the case with these cards. One side of the paper (I’ll call it "Side A") has limes and strawberries on it. The strawberries are bright red. The other side of the paper ("Side B") is red with tiny white dots on it. That red is a darker red and I wasn’t sure that the two reds worked well together. I quickly searched for some red paper with white dots that I thought I had in my collection, but I must have used it up. So I decided that if K&Company thought the 2 shades of red worked well together that was good enough for me.

Tips for today’s cards.
If you like quilts, buy the Paper Quilts book. Pull the patterns from the back of the book out of the book and make an extra copy of each page just in case you lose one of the original pages. Store the pattern pages in the back of the book. Store the copies someplace else.

Use a paper trimmer to cut your paper. It’s the easiest way to do it. Some of the squares that you will be cutting are 4.25" or 3.75" and a paper trimmer is marked with those measurements.
When I created this card I put strips of ScorPal tape across the card and then laid the small squares on the tape. It was easier than putting tape on the back of each square.

These cards are smaller than an A2 card. Most of them are 4.25" square cards. They fit in an A2 envelope.

If all of your pieces don’t fit together perfectly, get over it. Your card will still look great and no one will study it as much as you do. (Talking to myself here!)

That’s it for today. Thanks for stopping by. Please leave a comment!

Saturday, May 15, 2010

Saturday's Post

Hi Everyone!
Happy Saturday to all of you.

What a GORGEOUS day! Robbie and I walked along one of the paths at Great Meadows Wildlife Sanctuary in Concord. We walk there often. I always feel as if we are going on a treasure hunt. We never know what we’re going to hear or see.

Today we saw 3 snakes, 1 frog, some butterflies, lots of red winged blackbirds, some baltimore orioles, robins, and geese. When we walked about a month ago we saw a turtle and lots of skunk cabbage.

Meanwhile, back at the ranch...I’ve continued to play with my "Citronella" paper from K&Company. I like to create sets of 4 cards and store them in an Around Town tote from PaperTrey Ink. Now that I’ve made at least a couple of dozen of those Around Town totes I have some "tips" to share with you.

I start out by cutting 2 sheets of 12" x 12" double sided tag weight paper down to 8.5" x 11". Double sided tag paper means there is a Side A and a Side B. Two sheets of paper that are 3.5" x 12" are leftover from the original paper. As the directions state I run off 2 copies of the main pattern for the large tote. When I put the paper in my printer I make sure that the pattern prints onto the sides of the paper that will become the inside of the bag. I run the pattern for the side pieces of the bag off onto one sheet of copy paper instead of using another piece of tag paper. (Toni, Pattye, MaryEllen, and Janet you may remember that it bothered all of us when we ran the sides off on the tag paper because they only use a part of the paper.) I am able to cut both side pieces out of one of the leftover sheets of 3.5" x 12". When I put the bag together the outside of the bag is "Side A" from the tag paper and the side pieces are "Side B" from the tag paper. On the bag shown in the photograph I used a daisy paper punch to cut some daisies out of the remaining 3.5" x 11" piece of paper. I attached the "daisies" to the bag with glue dots. I tied some cord through some buttons and attached the buttons to the daisies with glue dots.

A2 cards measure 4.25’’ x 5.5". When I am making cards I cut 6 pieces of 3.75" x 5" paper from a 12" x 12" sheet of paper and attach those papers to six blank A2 cards.

If you look closely at this "Hello" card (click on the image to enlarge it) you can see that I used a scalloped circle paper punch to punch a hole through the pink patterned tag before I attached it to the A2 blank card. I used a circle Nestability to punch out and emboss the white circle that has "Hello" stamped on it.

Now look closely at this "thank you" card (click on the image to enlarge it) and you will see that I glued the scalloped circle that I had punched out from the first piece of patterned tag to the tag on this card. Remember the tag is 2 sided so you are seeing the second side of the tag instead of the pink flowered side.
Keep looking. The scalloped circle on the "Happy Birthday" card was punched out of the pink paper before it was glued. The punched out circle was glued to the "Just Because" card.

The scalloped circle on the "Feel Better Soon" card was punched out of the pink paper before the paper was glued. The punched out circle was glued to the "Hi" card. What I am trying to say is that I was able to use the "positive" and the "negative" parts of a sheet of paper to create 2 cards.

I’ve read that odd numbers are more pleasing to the eye. You can see that I added dimension and interest to the cards by adding an odd number of silk flowers to each of the cards.

I hope this post has helped you and not confused you. A few people have e-mailed with questions and I was trying to answer those questions and share that information with other readers at the same time.

Talk to you again soon.

Thursday, May 13, 2010

"Citronella" from K&Company

Hi Everyone!
Okay, I admit it. I am a papercrafting junkie. I just cannot help myself. Yesterday, I stopped at Michaels to purchase some glue dots. I wandered over to the clearance section to see what was there. Well, there was a block of paper sitting on one of the shelves calling to me. I picked it up, flipped through the pages, and it was love at first sight. I HAD to buy that paper. HAD TO!

The paper is called "Citronella" and is from K&Company. Find some, Janet, you’re going to want it! So will all of the other readers of this blog. The paper is double sided and is tag weight. As the name suggests the papers are citrus colors.

Look at this bag I made. Wouldn’t you just love to have it as a beach bag! Seriously, aren’t those colors the yummiest you have ever seen! I cut out 2 extra flowers and attached them to the bag with 3D dots.

I’ve finished 2 of the 4 cards that I plan to put in the bag. I added some orange Stickles to the flowers. I cut out a few extra flowers for each card and placed them on top of a matching flower. They are attached with 3D dots to help them pop out from the cards.

The "Happy Birthday" stamp on this card is from Hero Arts.

Not sure who will be the recipient of this all occasion "Best Fishes!" card, but I am happy with it. The fish are buttons from Favorite Findings. The "Best Fishes!" stamp is from River City Rubber Works. I stamped with one of the new ink pads that Marie gave me for Mother’s Day. The color is "Surf"! Perfect for this card.

I saw a card similar to this one at InkAbout It. The turtle has fallen over and landed on his back. I may cut out some orange leaves and use 3D dots to pop them out on this card.
The paper with these lemon slices on it was among my favorites in the block. The paper that I have backed the lemon slices on is the reverse side of the lemon paper. Inside the card as you might guess it says, "Make lemonade" and you can see the glass of lemonade epoxy sticker.

Robbie’s Mother’s Day gift to me arrived in the mail today. He bought me adorable Owl stamps from PaperTreyInk. Robbie and I have some ongoing jokes about owls so those stamps are meaningful to both of us. My Holiday Button Bits stamps from PaperTreyInk also arrived today.
New paper and new stamps along with the new items I purchased at the conference a couple of weeks ago. Fun! Fun! Fun!
Talk to you again soon.