Merry Christmas!

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Just wanted to wish you all a Merry Christmas.  I hope you have a fun, safe, special Christmas – whatever way you celebrate.

Today is my Mom’s birthday too so I’ll be going to visit her before we have our Christmas dinner.  I wish she was going to be with us at dinner this year but she broke her hip a couple of weeks ago and will be spending some time in rehabilitation at the hospital.  Poor thing.

I’ll leave you with a picture of our tree…can’t wait to see what Santa’s brought! (though, I will admit, the stocking is my favourite part!)

Hybrid Hot Chocolate

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With just 2 more sleeps until the big day and a work day in between (boo, hiss!), I’m running out of time to finish up everything I *want* to do for Christmas (I’ve done all I *need* to do…it’s the wants that kill me!).

The situation in my craft room was dire.  Christmas paraphernalia everywhere (including glitter!) and no space for other projects that need to be done.   I had to box up my craft supplies and put them away but still had a couple of projects to  do.

I decided to keep out only the scraps of paper that I used this season and some stickers in the event I needed to whip up a quick card (they’re 3D stickers – I do have SOME pride!).

Once I’d packed everything away I remembered that I needed to make a couple of hot chocolate pouches to go with a little gift I have for my cousin’s 2 daughters. 

Here’s what I came up with using the limited items that were left out:

Not too bad all things considered.

Anyway, now that the room is a bit tidier I can hem my jeans and a pair of pants I bought a couple of weeks ago and I can alter the new dog coat we got for Jack. (he doesn’t normally wear clothes but it can get pretty wet walking him in the Winter)

Not spending a ton of time stamping also freed up some time today for me to make my desserts for Christmas Eve and Christmas Day:

The cake is a Cherry Cake (very traditional for NL Christmas) and it reminds me of when I was younger and Mom would make cherry cake at Christmas – she wasn’t much of a baker but she did a good job on this cake every year.

The dessert in the pan is something I never made before so I hope it’s good.  I couldn’t decide between making one of my two “traditional” desserts – apple crisp or pear torte.  This is kind of a compromise – Apple Crisp Cheesecake bars.  I hope they’re good!

Shiny Snowman

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Today’s card (and final Christmas card for 2012) was commissioned by my manager at work.  He has the sweetest wife who also happens to be a talented artist so I was a bit nervous for her to see my colouring but I made the card extra blingy so that should distract from any colouring errors:

This guy has LOTS going on…I stamped the image twice then cut out all the trim on the hat and the robe and glued the extra trim layer to the top of the original image.  I then glued all the trim and sprinkled generous amounts of Martha Stewart coarse glitter over the glue.

Here’s a close up:

In the close up picture, you can see some of the snowflakes I made at the beginning of the Christmas project season.  They’re made using punches.  To give them more character, they have been rubbed or sponged with distress ink and then covered in snow glitter (a la Anna Wight! )  I usually make a dozen or so in 2 sizes to have on hand for my projects.  Any leftovers are saved for the next year because they’re a great finishing touch on almost any Christmas project.

My final touch was to add some tiny, super sparkly rhinestones on the upper left and on either side of the stamped sentiment.

Incidentally, this is a larger 6.5″X5″ card.

Must go wrap some presents!

Winter Hugs

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I had a request for a Baby’s First Christmas card so I dug around and found this cute Whipper Snapper Designs stamp that I felt would be appropriate (and later saw a Baby’s First Christmas card using the SAME image on the WSD Facebook page – I must have seen it and subconciously chose the image for that reason!)…

I kept the card soft and light with “baby” in mind…If I’d had any pink snowflake patterned paper left in my stash, I might have used that instead of blue since it’s a little girl but the blue works.

You can’t tell in the picture (how often do I write those words?) but the snowflake was punched out, inked with some cream ink and then covered in Martha Stewart snow glitter – which I am completely out of and cannot find it anywhere – did they discontinue it? 

Not many Christmas projects left to do around here…I have all my Christmas cards made (just made more of the same designs I already had going on) and have to make a couple of beaded pens and some tags for a gift set then I can clean up the Christmas supplies (major sad face – I really enjoy making Christmas stuff the most!).

Once my craft area has space on it again I have FOUR pairs of pants/jeans to hem and a new dog coat to alter (Jack has a barrel chest and a “normal” neck so I had to buy a large coat and alter the neck area – last coat had to be shortened too but I think this one will be okay “as is”). 

After the alterations (I can’t really sew and I don’t like these projects) I will start working on my Valentine’s Day inspiration station. 

Enjoy your week!

Bottled Moose

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Okay, it’s actually boxed moose but who ever heard of that?

WARNING – I don’t think my Aunt reads my blog but if she does and she’s reading right now, please come back after December 25th as one of your gifts is in this post.

Is she gone?

Good…

So, I needed to make an ornament for my aunt even though there is a handmade item in her Christmas gift this year as I make her something for the tree just about every Christmas.

I didn’t really have anything new to whip up this year so I had to come up with an idea from scratch.

I decided to make a felt ornament but didn’t know exactly what I could do that I hadn’t done before.  I finally went with something pertaining to life in Newfoundland so I made a moose ornament. (you could just as easily say it’s a reindeer – when you make them from felt they don’t really look that different)

Here’s the little guy I came up with:

Of course, I had to make a cute package to put him in so I quickly whipped this up:

…and here’s what the little guy looks like on MY tree (though he didn’t get to stay there…why don’t I ever make ornaments for myself?)

NOTE: If you want to try your hand at felt ornaments, it’s pretty easy.  I just drew on some paper until I got the right shape/scale that I wanted and then glued the shape to some cardboard that I cut out for tracing.  I then googled how to blanket stitch and found a helpful tutorial.  I kind of garbled up the antlers but I think it’s pretty good for a first attempt!

Believe

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Four more Christmas cards made.  That leaves me with 5 to go.  Today’s cards are all “mail outs” and I tried so hard to make them Canada Post friendly but couldn’t resisit breaking out the foam dimensionals and a rhinestone for some sparkle.

I made 2 red cards and 2 kraft cards.  I even played with my Mr. Huey spray (still trying to get the hang of it and I have varying results thus far).  The design was inspired by a card that limedoodle (see sidebar) made recently and one that Anna Wight made last year that was rustic yet beautiful.

Zero patterned paper on these cards.  Which is a shame because I have lots and lots of patterned paper.

On the plus side, I’m getting lots of use out of my baker’s twine so I know it’s okay to buy that particular consumable as opposed to so many other items I’ve bought with the foolish idea that I’d actually use them.  Prima Flowers? Meh.  Brads – double meh.  Buttons, yup, love me some buttons.  Baker’s twine?  Awesome with and without buttons….you get the point.

Now, what do my last 5 Christmas cards look like?  If you know, let ME know!

Is This Thing On?

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Just checking…pretty quiet out there lately…

I’ve been trying to use the “leftover” patterned paper from various Christmas projects for at least a few of my remaining required cards but most of the cards I make these days don’t use as much patterned paper as they used to.  Something to try to remember next time I place an online order…I think my card-making style is shifting again.

Anyway, just to get the mojo going, I made a few 3X3 cards (a fave technique of mine when I don’t feel creative – make a tiny card or a tag – some smaller scale paper craft as there’s less pressure to fill that space!) to go with some “just a thought” gifts I’ve prepared.

I made three of these – the stocking is a small Anna Wight stamp from the “Her Favorite Things” cling set.  Amazing how few stocking stamps I have (and I’m DESPERATE for a cute Santa that’s easy to paper piece or fussy cut).

I coloured the image with copics and fussy cut it.  It’s pop dotted (is that a verb?) onto the card so even though it’s a tiny card, it does have some dimension.

Now to take the plunge and crank out a few “full size” cards!

Banner Birthday

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After today’s card, I only have 1 more birthday card to do (I think – it’s possible I’m forgetting someone!).  That would be my mother’s birthday card – her birthday is on Christmas Day.

Today’s card is for my best friend who lives literally on the other side of Canada…it would be difficult for us to live further apart and still be in the same country.  She lives over 7000 km away (or, just over 5000 as the crow flies) and I miss her the most in December because of Christmas and both of us having December birthdays.   She doesn’t really surf the net so it’s pretty safe to post her card before her birthday.

This has to be mailed so I couldn’t use buttons or anything a little more “fabulous” for the bow embellishment.

It does look quite nice in real life except that the yellow flower is begging to have a pearl or a button or something attached to the middle.

I used patterned papers from 2 different paper lines.  They were in my “quality” scrap pile (i.e. newer lines of paper with large pieces left from a previous project).  I don’t like saying I used scraps because it makes it seem like I didn’t care enough to cut into a new piece of paper but that’s not the case.  I just happened to have lots of coordinating papers in the sizes I needed to make the card.

I used a soft pink cardstock for the base and the scallop as I didn’t want the colours competing for top billing.

The twine is Doodlebug from a Christmas assortment but the green was pretty close to my turtle’s colour so that was the winner.

Switching back to Christmas cards now but they’ll have to wait a day or so as tomorrow is my birthday.  I won’t divulge my age in this post but it’s fair to say that it’s 39 plus tax!  (not quite the HST but close enough!)  I’m taking the day off to go shopping (for me, not for Christmas) and then DH and I are going to our favourite restaurant for supper.  I’ll be too tired/full to think about setting foot in my craft room tomorrow.

Switching It Up

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While it’s certainly Christmas craft season in my messy craft room, I had to take a break from Christmas to work on some birthday cards (some commissioned and some for my own use).  I find it hard to switch back and forth because I keep my seasonal supplies segregated from my “everyday” stuff and having both types of supplies going at once makes my room more disorganized than usual.

However, it wasn’t much trouble to whip out some Paper Smooches stamps and make this cheerful, masculine birthday card:

I used one of my favourite lines of paper (Echo Park!) and a couple of die cuts I had left over from another card I made earlier in the day.  I paper-pieced the car which serves the purpose of matching the patterned paper exactly plus it solves the difficulty in colouring on non-white cardstock.

I was tempted to accent the “smoke” with a grey copic but didn’t want to cut more die cuts if I made a mistake as I’d already put the dies away.

As you can see from the last few cards I’ve made, I’m loving this technique of popping a panel of the same colour cardstock on top of the card base.

Snowman Hat Trick

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11 to go!

I made 3 Christmas cards yesterday (and I’m switching over to birthday cards today as some of those dates are fast approaching!) and the only time-consuming part was colouring and fussy cutting the images.

I reduced the amount of time I spend fretting over my layout by sticking to a simple design and switching up the colours/elements a little on each card.  This is a great way to “mass produce” without getting too bored and still have a different card for everyone on your list.

Here’s all three:

Of course, you can only really see the front card (which was number 3) so here are all the cards individually (note: I coloured all three images a little differently and deliberately mixed non-traditional colours with just a pop of traditional red and green):

Number 1:

Number 2:

…and number 3 (I had more space for the sentiment so I chose the same wording with a larger stamp):

I’m giving myself bonus points for using a Prima flower on the last card.  Geez, I’ve got a gazillion of them and I’m not even a flower person.  I’m just a sucker for cute packaging.

On to the birthday cards but I still need lots of Christmas cards ASAP for the people I have to mail them to – must come up with a mail friendly design for those – I used a LOT of dimensionals on the cards I made yesterday”!



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