Men's Faux Leather Birthday Wallet

This birthday wallet was inspired by one I saw in CardMaker magazine (January 2010).  I used the same dimensions but I made mine differently.  For the base of the wallet, you'll need 1 3 1/4" x 8 1/2" piece of brown cardstock.  For the inside liner, you'll need one 3 1/8" x 8 3/8" piece of coordinating brown cardstock.
For the window pockets, you'll need two 2 7/8" x 3 3/4" piece of brown cardstock (same color as cover).  I die cut an oval in the middle of each using my Creative Memories oval cutter.  To give mine a faux leather look, I inked the cover and the window pockets with Distress Ink, sanded them lightly, then covered the top with VersaMark.  I added clear embossing powder and then heat embossed them for to get the shine.  When cool, I lightly sanded the tops again for a slightly worn look.

Before adhering the liner to the cover, add a tab...cut two 2" x 3/4" pieces of brown cardstock.  Round one end of both pieces.  Put a brad through one piece, then adhere the pieces together to hide the brad back.  Adhere the tab between the layers of the wallet.  You can leave the top open if you want to insert money into the body of the wallet.  Adhere the pockets to the inside by applying adhesive to the bottom and sides of each window pocket...this allows the contents to be removed.

Mine holds a picture of my kids in one pocket and a giftcard to Home Depot in the other...for my dad's birthday.  I added a strip of cardstock with a stamped "Happy Birthday" on the outside of the wallet, held on with a spiral paper clip.  It's hard to come up with crafty things to make for a guy, but I think this is super-manly and I hope he'll like it!  :)

Thanks for looking and have a creative day!


Paper Orchid

I found a tutorial by a really crafty lady named Tarah Faulkner on YouTube on how to make a paper orchid.  She cut the petals for each flower by hand and used cardstock to wrap  the stems.  Since I'm "busy" (read: "lazy") I decided to use my beloved Cricut to help me make one of my own!

For this project, I used the following Cricut cartridges and sizes for my flowers:
1.  Accent Essentials: Accent33 (+shift) at 4" for narrow petals
2.  Storybook: "B" (+shift, +Accent/Blackout) at 2" for wide petals
3.  Walk In My Garden: Leaf1 (+Blackout) at 1 1/4" for ruffled petal

Using the Cricut took only a fraction of the time it would have taken to cut these petals by hand.  Additionally, I did not attach each petal to a piece of floral wire, as was shown in the tutorial for this project. I simply curled each petal with my stylus and then hot glued them to the center piece (which is attached to floral wire).  And instead of using dampened cardstock strips to wrap the stems, I used floral tape!  This also cut my assembly time tremendously!

Hope you enjoy this project!  Have a creative day!!!  :)


Fantabulous Cricut Challenge #7: For Mom

The challenge over at Fantabulous Cricut Challenge Blog this week is called "For Mom":  make something for Mother's Day.  I went with a card because my mom loves my handmade cards.  :)

I used a pink and green flourish/floral paper for the card mat and inked the edges in pink and rounded  the corners.  The green strip in the middle is inked and embossed (Cuttlebug--Birds & Swirls).  It's backed by two scallop edge white strips (EK Success punch) and adhered to the card.  I also added two white brads on the sides of the green strip. 

For the "M"s, I used Opposites Attract, with the upright shadow feature on the dark pink and the standard upright on the light pink.  Both are inked, adhered together and then popped with adhesive foam dots.  The flower in the center is made with layered multi-sized flowers cut from Walk In My Garden.  The edges are curled with a stylus, inked and then they're adhered together.  I threaded narrow white ribbon through a pink button, tied a knot and adhered it to the center of the flower.  The flower takes the place of the "O" in the word "MOM".

So that's it!  Hope you enjoyed my project for FCCB's challenge #7!  Head on over and check out the other fabulous projects by the DT and let us know what you think!  And don't forget to link up your own Mother's Day project by next Sunday night!

Have a creative day!  :)


My work was featured at Love To Know: Scrapbooking!!!

I recently contacted a super lady named Dana Hinders about featuring some of her ideas for using the Cricut in scrapbooking.  She has some fabulous tips here

She asked if I would be interested in an interview, as a Sr. Design Team member of a Cricut Challenge Blog (Fantabulous Cricut).  Of course I said yes!!!

She wrote the article and it's posted along with some of my work samples, all made with my Cricut.  The article can be found here:  Love To Know Scrapbooking Interview.

So excited!!!  Thanks for looking and have a creative day!  :)

FCCB #6: Faux Carved Wood Plaque

This week's Fantabulous Cricut Challenge is called "Winged":  Create a project using something that flies (butterfly, bird, dragon, etc.).  When I saw the word "winged" I immediately thought of butterflies so that's the subject of my project.

I recently saw an episode of Paint, Paper & Crafts on TV and saw a wooden photo frame being customized by using chipboard die cuts adhered to the frame and then painted over.  It gave it the look of hand-carved wood!  I decided to try this technique using a simple wooden plaque...and it worked!

I used my Cricut Home Accents cartridge to cut both butterfly cuts and their shadows (using the deep cut blade and the "Multi Cut" feature.  I adhered each die-cut to its shadow and then used Modge Podge to adhere them to the wood.  Once dry, I applied one more coat of Modge Podge and then one coat of white paint.  When that was dry I applied my taupe paint.  To "age" it, I mixed antiquing medium with one drop of Chocolate (CTMH) re-inker and brushed over liberally, then wiped off the excess.  Once dry, I sanded the edges and over the top, including gently sanding the die cuts.  I then inked the sides with Timber Brown Staz-On ink to give it some definition.  I cut the word "dream" out of brown vinyl from the Home Accents cartridge and applied it to the bottom corner.

The finished plaque has a very "aged" look...kind of looks like it's been sitting around in a shed for a while (I LOVE that look) waiting to be rediscovered!  I love that it looks like it was actually hand-carved, and not just created with cereal boxes...HAH!  Not sure where I'm going to put it, but I'm sure I'll find the perfect spot!

Head over to FCCB and link up your "winged" project!  And be sure to check out all the fabulous DT projects while you're there!
Thanks for looking and have a creative day!  :)


"Lori & Lizzy"...I'm spending a year with Elizabeth Kartchner!!!

Okay, so maybe I'm not spending a year with her "in person".  :)  But I AM going to spend a year with her book, "52 More Scrapbooking Challenges", completing one challenge a week from now until next May!  I just got the book today and can I just say that it is FABULOUS?!?!? 

For those of you that don't know me very well, this chick is what I refer to as my "scrapbooking idol".  I just LOVE her work!  So when I found this book, I was soooooooo inspired and absolutely hooked.  Since there are 52 challenges, I decided to take one challenge per week, for the next year....think "Julie & Julia", only it will be "Lori and Lizzy".  :)

I plan to blog once a week on my weekly challenge...not sure where this will take me, but hopefully it will encourage me to take risks and try new things in my scrapbooking.  I'll start the first week in May and will complete one layout a week through May 2011.  I'm going to think of it as a "slightly" late New Year's Resolution to get me creating more layouts...hee, hee.

Soooooo excited to get started...stay tuned!  :)


Get Staz-On Ink Off Your Acrylic Stamp Blocks!

If you haven't received the newest edition of Creating Keepsakes Magazine, you're in for a treat!  I got mine in the mail yesterday...woo hoo!  I must admit that I am a papercrafting magazine addict (really).  But CK is by far my fave.

Anyway, as I was browsing through the pages I noticed an article on acrylic stamping blocks.  It said that you could use the Mr. Clean Magic Eraser to get Staz-On ink off of the blocks!  If you don't know what Staz-On ink is, it's a super-permanent ink that will stamp and stay onto almost anything...including the acrylic block your stamp is on.  Why I never thought to try this before is beyond me.  DUH!

So, I gave it a try, since I had a couple of blocks that looked pretty rough after a Staz-On project a while back.

Here's the before:
Here is the Magic Eraser at work:
And here is the result:

How cool is that?  They look brand new.  Great, something else I have to find a place to keep in my scrapbook room.  Hee, hee, hee....


Vegetable Garden Stakes For My New Garden!

We've been out of town for a couple of weeks so I haven't had a chance to post photos of my new vegetable garden!  Compliments to my dad who basically did the whole thing thanks to my lack of muscle strength and inability to effectively shovel dirt.  :)
More on the vegetable stakes I made in a minute...
Now keep in mind that I was just thinking about a basic wood box with dirt thrown in...but, if you know my dad, you know that nothing (I mean NOTHING) can be a simple project.  I suppose it's the engineer in him.  Due to concerns that untreated wood might be a lure for termites and that treated wood might have chemicals that could seep into the vegetables, we went with stone pavers to contain the garden.  I must admit it looks nice, but OMG it was a LOT more work.  :)
The CFO was 100% against having a garden, which he describes as "work".  I, on the other hand, consider a garden to be FUN.  I obviously won the fight.  :) 

As you can see, the Mess Maker was in favor of a garden, too, because she wanted to "grow the vegetables" (aka water them).

We decided to go with tomatoes (two varieties), carrots, onions, bell peppers, radishes and cucumbers along with some herbs: basil, oregano, sage, thyme, parsley and rosemary.  The cucumbers are in a whiskey barrel next to the fence...I didn't want them to completely take over my little 4x8 foot garden. 

Now for the stakes:
Not that I can't identify the vegetables just by how they look, but I thought it'd be fun to "jazz" it up a bit by adding the garden stakes.  I used my Cricut, of course, some inking to make the signs look weathered, and LOTS of piecing together to make the individual vegetables.  For durability, I laminated each sign and then hotglued them to a stake to insert in the ground. 

Here is a rundown of what I used:
Sign:  Walk In My Garden (WIMG)
Lettering: All Mixed Up
  Tomato: pumpkin and palm tree top from Doodlecharms (DC)
Radish: bee from WIMG
Pepper: popsicle from DC
Carrot: pine branch from Joys Of The Season (JOTS)
Onion: bulb from JOTS
Basil: leaf from Blackletter
Sage: leaf from Blackletter
Rosemary: branch from Storybook (SB)
Parsley: branch from SB
Thyme: vine from SB
Oregano: branch from SB

And here is the finished result:
Thanks for looking and have a creative day!  (And if you have any tips on keeping my currently green vegetable plants alive, please, do share...I'm not exactly known as a green thumb!)  :)


Fantabulous Cricut Challenge #5: "April Showers"

This week's FCCB Challenge is called "April Showers": use a water theme on your project (i.e. preserver, hat, umbrella, etc.).  I knew the moment I read the title of this challenge what I wanted to do...I took these photos of the Mess Maker several weeks back and just had to get them on a layout!

For this layout, I used Graphically Speaking for the clouds, All Mixed Up for the title and Paisley for the umbrella.  I used the shadow feature on each cut to make them pop off the patterned background papers.  I incorporated yellow, pink, black and gray which were the focal colors in the photographs.  The journaling was printed from the computer and I added three clear flower buttons at the bottom with coordinating pink ribbon.

Hop on over to Fantabulous Cricut and check out the other design team members' work...there are some awesome projects this week!  Happy crafting!  :)


Sunshine Award!

Thanks sooooo much to Debbie over at Debbie's Scrappin' Corner for this awesome award...thanks so much for thinking of me!  I really appreciate it!!!  Head over to Debbie's blog and check out her awesome work!!!  :)

Fantabulous Cricut Challenge #4: Word/Shape Theme

The fourth challenge at Fantabulous Cricut begins today and it's a shape/word theme: use a flower shape and the word "happy" somewhere on your project. And you have to use at least one Cricut cut, but it doesn't have to be the word/shape in the theme.

My project this week is a Mother's Day card. I used CTMH's Boom-Di-Ada papers for this one. I cut two flower shapes from the George cartridge and layered them, addind a button for the center. This is my main embellishment on the card. For the word "happy", I stamped the sentiment "Happy Mother's Day" (CTMH) onto a thin strip of cardstock and attached it to the bottom of the card.

The stamped background on the right side of the card base is made with a flourish from the Limited Edition Felicity CTMH stamp collection....which also happens to be the prize for this week's winner of the FCCB Weekly Challenge!!! :)

If you haven't already, head over to FCCB and enter your project today...and be sure to check out the other DT members' projects...they're FANTABULOUS! :)

Have a creative day!


FCCB Scrappin' Saturday #3: Custom Word Books

Today's FCCB Scrappin' Saturday topic is making your own, custom word books with your Cricut!  This is a mini album word book I made a couple of months ago for a workshop.  I had no idea how to make these until I found this AWESOME, step-by-step tutorial over at ACherryOnTop.  Once I read through the tutorial and tried it for myself, I realized just how simple these are to make!  Note:  You'll need Cricut Design Studio to weld the pages for these albums.

You can pick any font, word, shape or theme from the cartridges you own and make any size mini-album you want!  I just love the flexibility this gives and ESPECIALLY that I don't have to sand or trim my papers to fit on top...just cut them just like you cut your chipboard for the pages and they'll fit perfectly on top!  WOO HOO!!!

If you try one of these albums, let me know...I'd love to see your results!  Head over to FCCB for more information and to check out the other fabulous projects featured there each week!

Happy Scrappin'!