Friday, March 17, 2017

St. Patrick's Day Box Card

The holiday of St. Patrick's Day is a funny one. I want to celebrate it, but I'm only a tiny bit Irish so it doesn't really hold a lot of meaning for me. Rather than "celebrate" it, I enjoy making St. Patrick's Day cards for my Irish friends. And although the box card craze is probably passé by now, I still enjoy making them from time to time. Today I'm sharing a quick tutorial on how I made my St. Patrick's Day box card.

My box card started with Graphic 45's "Off To The Races" papers, both the Patterns & Solids, and the 12" x 12" paper pad plus one sheet of bright green cardstock. I've used an SVGCuts file for my cutting from their Box Cards Kit, but you can make box cards easily with a trimmer and scoring stylus. You won't get those cute bracket cuts on the flaps, but it'll still be pretty in the end. Simply cut your cardstock base 11 3/8" x 5 3/4". Score vertically at every 2 3/4" until you have 3/8" left over. Turn the piece a quarter turn and score one long score at 2 7/8" all the way down. Cut away 1 1/8" from the tops of three of the flaps and make a slit between each until you get to the score line.

If you're using the SVG file, the paper pieces are all included. Simply choose the papers you want and send them through your cutting machine. I use the Cricut Explore and always use the German Carbide blade for the cleanest cut. If you're cutting your own papers, cut three at 2 1/2" x 2 5/8", three at 2 1/2" x 1 1/2" for the flaps, and one tall one at 2 1/2" x 5 1/2". Adhere these to the base as shown. This will be the outside of your box and the flaps will fold down.

Flip the whole thing over and cut more papers for the inside of the box. I didn't cut any of the squares on mine, but you could.

The two inner supports are also included in the SVG file, but if you're cutting your own, simply cut two cardstock strips at 4 1/2" x 1" then score 7/8" from each end. Fold inward as shown. The SVG file I used had flowers, but I wanted clovers, so I searched and found that I owned these clover clusters in my purchased images. They came from Close To My Heart's newest cartridge called "Flower Market." I cut three and assembled them. Now is also the time to do any fussy cuts or added elements. You'll see that I punched some additional clovers to fill in spaces later.

I added a quick tracing of green silk microfine glitter from Elizabeth Craft Designs around my clovers. I used a green marker for shading and I inked the edges of the white buds with Vintage Photo Distress Ink.

Now it's time to assemble the box. See that green tab on the inside? You won't see that once you fill in all the stuff later, but if this bothers you you could always adhere that large paper over the top of it after you've assembled, rather than beforehand like I did.

After you've adhered some elements to the back wall of the box, you can add those "supports" to the inside. I found it easier to adhere the supports separately, then add the "filler" elements to those supports afterwards so I could see where things needed to stagger. But you may prefer to adhere them to the supports first. Up to you.

Keep layering elements and checking the fullness until you're happy. The four-leaf clover punch I used is from Martha Stewart Crafts. (I just checked and looks like this punch is rather old and therefore rare. Saw it on eBay for as much as $88! So use whatever you have available to you.) To finish up, I stamped a sentiment, added some ribbon and then some green gems.

The best part about this box card is it folds FLAT and can be mailed! I gave this one to my parents yesterday, as they treated us to a delicious Irish meal of Corned Beef and Cabbage. I loved the look on their faces when they popped open the card and it turned into this pretty box!

Oh, and by the way, the envelope is also included in that SVG file. I can't wait to make some more of those great projects in that bundle. Stay tuned because some of those are perfect for Springtime crafts and Easter projects. 

Meanwhile, have a great weekend, and as always, thanks for stopping in today.

Thursday, March 2, 2017

Will I be in your area this year? 2017 Travel Calendar

We're already into March of 2017 and it's gonna be a busy and fun-filled remaining 9 months. Already I've been to Creativation in Phoenix in January, and taught two classes at one of my favorite Florida scrapbook stores Scraporium in February. I'm teaching here at my home in March, then it's off to visit possibly YOU at your local scrapbook store. Check out my schedule below to see if I'll be in your area this year. Details and photos of each location's classes are posted in my Calendar tab above. Contact the stores directly to sign up or get more information. Don't see a store near you? Let your local store owner know you'd like to have me teach there in 2018!

APRIL 7 - 9
Alberta, Canada

MAY 5 - 7 
Indianapolis, Indiana

JUNE 2 - 4
Greenfield, Wisconsin

JULY 14 - 16
Tampa, Florida

Kent, Washington

OCTOBER 26 - 29
Echo Mountain Inn
Hendersonville, North Carolina

Annual Holiday Workshop
Brevard County, Florida (Exact location TBA)


JANUARY 20 - 22
Phoenix, Arizona

JANUARY 25 - 29
(Hosted by Scraporium)
Royal Caribbean Brilliance of the Seas (Port of Tampa)
Western Caribbean Cruise to Cozumel, Mexico

Monday, February 27, 2017

Pop-up Card Tutorial with Midnight Masquerade

I had such great response to my Dimension Card series the other day, I had to make another card to share today. Many of you asking for a tutorial, and while it wouldn't be fair to share a tutorial for ALL the cards (why would anyone pay to come to my class if I gave away the farm on my blog?) I thought I'd share the techniques and a tutorial for one of the most popular cards in that series, this time using Graphic 45's new Midnight Masquerade collection to show a variation.

My card measures 4" x 6" when folded flat. I like this size for a couple reasons. One is, the card and a coordinating envelope will fit inside Graphic 45's regular book box. So you can make a whole card set and some matching envelopes, decorate the box with leftover papers and, voila! you've created an amazing gift. The second reason is it makes cutting elements for the card easier, especially working with the cut-apart pages in Graphic 45's collections. Every paper pad includes these cut-aparts in standard sizes of 4" x 6" and 3" x 4" which is ideal for pocket scrapbooking too.

The inside of the card is where the surprise is. Lots of dimension and space for elements! This card couldn't be simpler to make. Take a look...

Cut a piece of cardstock 12" x 6" and score at 4", 6" and 8". Fold as shown.

Cut coordinating Midnight Masquerade paper as follows: Two at 3 3/4" x 5 3/4" 
and two at 1 3/4" x 5 3/4". Ink edges, if desired. I used Dusty Concord Distress Ink. (My papers are from the Midnight Masquerade 12" x 12" Patterns & Solids which are great for card backgrounds.)

Adhere the papers to the inside like this.

Cut a cardstock strip 8" x 2" and score at 4" and 6". Cut coordinating papers 3 3/4" x 1 3/4" and two at 1 3/4" x 1 3/4". Ink edges.

Adhere the papers to the cardstock strip as shown. For a space to write your message, cut apart a journaling card from the paper collection and adhere on the right panel. Keep it toward the top of the panel so you don't cover it up in a later step.

Place double-sided adhesive tape on the back of two ends, careful not to go past 2" from each end.

Peel and stick the unit in place like this.

Here I'm sharing the cuts I made from the cut-aparts in the collection. You could also do this with the Midnight Masquerade Ephemera Cards if you'd rather save your papers for other projects. The imagery is the same. The top row shows the cut-apart, and the bottom shows the elements I cut.

Now for the fun! Start adding elements to your card. The banner across the top is made from the Patterns & Solids again, cut with the Banners die set from Elizabeth Craft Designs.

Fussy cut several masks. I love the Venetian Carnival page in this paper collection because it's full of these fun masks.

Adhere the masks to the inside. I adhered some flat, some with foam tape, and a few others with a double-thick strip of cardstock to serve as a "post". These were adhered to the inside back of the dimensional flap. You have to be mindful when adding elements to the flap so your card will still close properly and not crush them. Just keep closing and opening your card as you add things to check them for placement.

Do a few more fussy cuts as desired and assemble the front of your card.

Here's a better view of the dimension of the fussy cut elements. Just a bit of foam tape does the trick.

My card needed a little something more, so flowers came to mind. And to fill in around the flowers, I decided on some simple punched leaves of very non-traditional colors to match my card. I inked them and shaped them a bit before adhering.

Some Petaloo velvet hydrangeas with a touch of purple were perfect. Then I just added my leaves around them.

Here's another look at the completed card front.

And the inside after adding a stamped sentiment to the left panel.

It's a deceptively simple card with a very impressive look. I hope you give it a try and let me know what collection you used. Have fun and enjoy your creative journey.

Monday, February 20, 2017

Two New Classes Coming in March

Hi and Happy Monday everyone. I've got two fun class offerings coming up that I wanted to share with you today.

DISTRESS OXIDES • Sunday March 5 •  2:00 - 4:00
$10 • Space is limited to 20

First up is Demo/Mini Class on Distress Oxides. I'll share their unique properties, demonstrate different ways to use them, and compare them to Distress Inks. Guests will each create 3 tags each.

DIMENSIONAL CARD CLASS • Sunday March 19 •  1:00 - 5:00
$45 • Space is limited to 15

Second is my Dimensional Card Class with Graphic 45's Off To The Races collection. As you'll see from the cards, this is not just a horse-lovers paper collection. I've used the patterns and solids and the B-sides of many of the papers to show how versatile it is. I've got a great little video on each card below. (Sorry about the quality. I uploaded this from my phone. Still learning I guess...)

Wednesday, February 8, 2017

Creativation Recap - a new perspective

Creativation, formerly known as CHA (Craft & Hobby Association), was held in Phoenix a few weeks ago. I've been to the show every year for the past handful of years but this year was from a new perspective as I was invited to teach in Graphic 45's first in-booth class. Classes are always offered at the show, but typically in classrooms away from the show floor. This year, Graphic 45 wanted to test out a 12-student mini-class right in the showroom booth as an added offering to retailers. Today, I thought I'd share a bit of my experience with you.

I always arrive at the show the Thursday beforehand, leaving plenty of time to meet with friends for dinner and to wrap up some loose ends on Friday before the show starts. My hotel roomie Linda Ledbetter and I met up with Graphic 45 gals Ginger Ropp and Maggi Harding. The two I'm doing the Creative Mountain Retreat with in October, so of course we had lots to talk about. We usually talk via Skype, so it was great to actually meet in the flesh. And the dinner was delicious!

Friday morning, after coffee, I headed over to the showroom floor to the Graphic 45 booth to deliver my samples and do some last-minute preparations for my in-booth class. It's a crazy scene on Friday because EVERYONE from every booth is setting up. This is how things looked when I walked into the G45 booth. They take hours and hours to set up and it's fabulous when they are finished.

Friday evening was the New Product Showcase which needs little explanation. It's a great time to mingle with others, grab a cocktail and get a glimpse at some of the hottest new releases.

Although I didn't snap this photo myself (I grabbed it off Instagram) I just had to share. David Tutera has partnered with Sizzix and was debuting his new wedding-themed dies and accessories. You can check them out here. My daughter Jamie and I use to watch his show all the time, so I made sure to send her this photo. She flipped!

Finally Saturday was here and I was ready. Since the Graphic 45 family always dresses to highlight a specific paper collection each day of the show, I was thrilled to be able to join in too! First up was Midnight Masquerade. Jamie and I did a little thrift store shopping when she was home for the holidays and we picked out some pieces for the show together. I did some tailoring and adorning for my outfits. What fun this was. 

From the time I got to the booth and taught four classes back to back all day, it was all a blur and absolutely a thrill! No time for a single photo, but the classes went smoothly and I met a bunch of great people.

Sunday's theme was Portrait of a Lady. Graphic 45er Maggi Harding was working in the Petaloo booth, so she was a busy girl too. We snapped this quickie before all the excitement began.

The outfits the Graphic 45 family are so beautiful and perfect. They layer and accessorize, and look absolutely stunning. Here Charee is chatting before the show. 

Charee's brother Jeff and sister Aimee are pretty casual before the floodgates open for the day.

And there's sweet Joanna Hardy, who was just as beautiful as can be in her gorgeous attire.

I can't even describe to you how lovely Graphic 45 creator (and Mom to Charee, Jeff and Aimee) Diane Schultz looked in person. I had to have my photo with her. Her layers, her jewelry, her hat... she was perfect! And such a warm and genuine person she is.

I can't wait for Portrait of a Lady to arrive in your stores. You all are going to LOVE this collection. The booth was just fantastic down to every single small detail.

Sunday evening was such a JOY. The entire Graphic 45 team, including family, designers and ambassadors had dinner together. It was so great to see Yumi again, and to meet Magda and Kaitlyn in person, and of course to have a chance to chat with Charee, Jeff, Aimee and Diane.

I had to grab a quick group selfie just for fun before everyone went back to their hotels for the night. The lighting is terrible, but I'm happy I got this fun shot.

Finally on Monday, I was able to walk the showroom floor to check things out for myself. This is the best day because many people have already gone home and it's not as busy. And I get the chance to visit with people and get some photos. Like this one with Heidi Swapp, who always inspires.

And I was happy to see Tim Holtz was still doing demo's in the Ranger booth because I really needed to see those new Distress Oxides in action for myself. Guess what? Yep, I ordered all of them.

I'm trying hard not to giggle too much here. Tim was goofing around while taking this. (We had to take a few.) I stopped taking photos after that and just enjoyed walking the floor with Maggi and placing my orders. It was quite different than in year's past where I took a ton of photos. But teaching in the Graphic 45 booth was a thrill and I would do it again in a heartbeat if they asked me. 

And just like that, the show was over. I returned home to Paul and Suki on Tuesday after a fantastic time in Phoenix. I booked many teaching gigs all over and my 2017 calendar is now full! (Stay tuned for info on that soon.)

Thanks for stopping in today. I can't wait to continue on my creative journey this year and share it with you. 

Tuesday, February 7, 2017

Oops! Correction to May 2017 mini calendar

I was recently informed by a sharp follower that I made an error in the month of May on my free printable mini calendar. I've made the adjustment and updated the accessible PDF. You can find it here. Sorry for any inconvenience. (Some of you probably didn't notice yet.)

Enjoy your Monday and I'll be back tomorrow with some recap photos of my trip to Phoenix for Creativation!

Monday, January 30, 2017

Cafe Parisian Bakery Shoppe Sweets

This weekend I'll be teaching two Graphic 45 classes at Scraporium in Tampa. One of which is a Nature Sketchbook planner/album and the other is a Cafe Parisian Bakery Shoppe. I've been prepping for weeks and sharing teasers of these cute little sweets on my social media along the way, so I thought I would share how I made them today.

A handful of years ago, the Decoden hobby was all the rage in Japan. It tried to catch on here in the states, but I'm not sure if it ever did. Japan teenagers seem to love "super cute" anything. If you don't know what I'm talking about, click this Google search link for Japanese Decoden. Basically, it's the hobby of "frosting" items (like we alter items) and then pressing cute gems, figures, molds into that frosting, then sprinkling with glitter to max out the cutesy factor.

At the Craft and Hobby Association show back in 2014, I was first exposed to this cute hobby in the Plaid booth, featuring some very fun Mod Melt Molds and Melts (glue sticks). Keep scrolling through this post to the end to see the cute projects I made with them.

When designing a project to teach using Graphic 45's Cafe Parisian collection, it naturally came to mind to create a bakery shop. And what better to fill that shop than with little French baked goodies? The Mod Molds immediately popped into my head.

Check out how easy they are to make...

To start, you'll need a hot-glue gun (mini size) and the Mod Podge Mod Melts. I like the Milk Glass White because I like to paint mine, but there are multi-color and glitter sticks to also pick from. I found these at both Joann's and Michael's craft stores.

Then you need molds. The orange one above is an actual Mod Podge Mold (of which there are many choices and themes) and the brown one is from the candy-making aisle of the craft store. You would normally melt chocolate wafers and pour them into this type of mold, so I thought "Why wouldn't they work with my hot glue?" And I found that they did.

It only takes a few minutes for them to cool in the molds, then you can pop them right out. The molds are made of flexible silicone rubber, which makes them super easy to release.

The great news is if you overflow the mold a little, and you have this extra stuff hanging off the edges...

It cuts off easily with basic crafting scissors. No special tools required.

Then you can have fun painting them with acrylic paints. I like Satin finish (or glossy) paints, and especially like FolkArt satin finish paints for their single-layer coverage and slight gloss. If you can't find the right paint color you like in satin, you can always use matte. Just follow up with a coat of Mod Podge Gloss Luster. 

Since my students will be focused on the assembly of the bakery shop and it's mini album (rather than the making of the baked goods) I prepared everyones in advance. Yes, it's a lot of painting of very small pieces, but I found it therapeutic. (My husband thinks I'm crazy.)

These cute little "cinnamon rolls" were made from the lollipop mold, from which I simply eliminated the stick.

Students will put together four little cake stands (which I created on my Cricut machine in Design Space) then adhere their baked goods on top.

Each stand will get adhered inside the bakery window. I purchased a small LED light for mine which I will show the class Saturday. 

Here are my first tries with the molds a few years ago. An altered picture frame, make-up compact, and cellphone case. This would be a very fun craft with younger kids through teenagers. But really, as we crafters know, we don't ever outgrow these things. Age isn't a thing when it comes to crafting. Right?

Thanks for popping in today, I'll be sharing a bit about this year's CHA show, now named Creativation, next week so stay tuned. I had the greatest time teaching in the Graphic 45 booth this year. I'll share that project I taught as well as lots of photos. 

Have a great week!