Thursday, January 17, 2019

Blingy Mo Manning - Use Your Stash

“Create. Not for the money. Not for the fame. Not for the recognition. But for the pure joy of creating something and sharing it.”
Ernest Barbaric
Mo Manning digi, Bo Bunny Card Kit

While organizing my craft room recently, I found several card kits with some fun supplies in them.  I decided to take an image that I had previously colored and combine it with some of my new found goodies and see what kind of a quick card I could come up with.  Not too bad for a half hour project.  Gotta do this more often. It gets me out of my box and energizes my creative process.


One of the things I did during my purge was gather all my bling together and separate it into colors.  Now I just pull out a drawer of embellishments to match my project and I can choose from a whole variety of fun stuff.  Works for me!

Thanks for visiting.
Go forth and create something fabulous.Southern Girls Challenge
Nancy

Playing along with:
        Creative Knockouts Challenge #281
        Cute Card Thursday Challenge #565
        Fab N Funky Challenge #423
        The Paper Players Challenge #424
        Southern Girls Challenge
        The Crafters Cafe Challenge #211
        Crafting From the Heart Challenge #234
        Crafty Gals Corner Challenge #183

Tidying Up my Craft Room - Sparking Some Joy in My Happy Place



 The objective of cleaning is not just to clean, but to feel happiness living in that environment.  
Marie Kondo


Does everything surrounding you in your craft room "spark joy"?  According to the KonMari method of "Tidying Up" that's the question we should be asking ourselves.  I got on this bandwagon recently and the results have been epic. In my modified craft room version, I gathered like items together and looked at each one to determine if I really loved (or needed) it.  The result was a car load of items carted off to Good Will.  It's so liberating to know what I have and be able to easily find it.


Now that my happy place is purged, I decided to take some pictures of my mini makeover. I haven't changed the layout much, but I have made things more efficient. This is the view of my room from outside the hallway shutters.  I love being able to open the shutters and hear what everyone (my hubby) is up to. But they are closed most of the time because I like the solitude and no one is allowed in my magic space without an invitation.  😁


I try to keep my main work area open and clear of clutter, but when I'm actually working I end up with a tiny work space about the size of a postage stamp.  I love the Tim Holtz mat because it is raised and actually helps to define my working space.  The glass surface is also good for working with different mediums.  My lap top is to the left and I can slide my chair around to use it and still have room for my gangly legs.


Copic coloring is my passion and I keep my markers close at all times. It's very convenient to roll this cart back and forth to my work area.  My colored pencils are in the cart also  because I often use them with my copics. Die cuts come in as a close second to my copic obsession, so my Gemini is on my table at the ready.   


Quilting is my other addiction and I spend a lot of time on this side of my room in my sewing area.  All my sewing supplies are in the drawers below my machine and my cherished embroidery machine is to the left. My fabric is stored in another room...or two. Those are ribbon embellishments on the shelf above.  I'll post some of my storage ideas in a future blog.

This sign says it all.    I feel so blessed to have my little creative retreat.


Most of the images I color are beautiful women.  Even when I was very young, my favorite thing to do was draw pretty ladies and color them.  When I was arranging the things that bring me joy in my craft room, I remembered these gorgeous Gene dolls I had tucked away in a chest.  I brought them out so I could admire them and dress them for every season.  They really do make me happy.  And I love my sign that tells everyone who enters my space how lovely they look.  I think it's because my happy place  makes them smile. 

Thanks for visiting,
Go forth and create something fabulous.
Nancy

Monday, December 31, 2018

Conie Fong Garden Fairy - Kit and Clowder Copic Class

Fairies dance and tell secrets at the bottom of the garden. 


Copic markers, Conie Fong digi, Cricut Design Space frame, pink cardstock, gold metallic cardstock,
daisy embellishment, swirl punch

Hey everyone,

I'm hoping for a little magical fairy dust in 2019; how about you? It's sometimes intimidating to create a card for my amazingly talented artist friend's January birthday, so I usually spend some extra time coloring an image with my copics and fretting a little over the design  But I never worry if she'll like it because she's always so supportive and generous with her praise...like a true artist.  I decided  this sweet Conie Fong garden fairy that I colored for my December monthly Kit and Clowder class would work very nicely for her card. The coloring was a little more challenging on this smaller 4 x 6 canvas because I sized it to fit the front of a 5 x 7 card, allowing room for a frame.  The background also took up some card real estate, but I always love it when our teacher, Alyce Keegan, adds a background to the image because it adds so much depth and really stretches my coloring skills.

The images Alyce chooses for her classes are lovely and can stand on their own when colored, but I usually prefer to make them into cards to send to special people who will appreciate the hours of work I put into them.  I looked through all my beautiful fancy die cut frames and realized they were much too ornate for this detailed image.  Once again, my Cricut was the answer.  I found this simple frame in Cricut Design Studio, sized it to fit my image perfectly and cut it out in pink, with a small metallic gold edging.  Its simplicity keeps the beautiful forest scene in focus.  I added a little daisy embellishment and metallic gold swirl to one corner to mirror the daisies in my image and the gold on the frame.

Why did I ever imagine I was getting tired of fairies?  They're so delightfully whimsical and they're always there to lift us when we're down.  I'm a believer.

Thanks for visiting.
Go forth and create something fabulous.
Nancy

Playing along with:
        Water Cooler Wednesday Challenge #201

Friday, December 28, 2018

Machine Appliqued Lion Bib and Giraffe Self Binding Receiving Blanket




My friend was blessed to receive a very special late Christmas gift this year.  Just two days after Christmas, her daughter gave birth to an adorable baby boy, who joins three very jubilant siblings. I always keep a few of my machine appliqued baby bibs and blankets on hand for these joyful events because they happen so often!  If riding in a one-horse open sleigh is fun, then making these bibs and blankets must be a close second.  There is a huge variety of darling digital embroidery patterns on the internet so personalizing is a snap. Immediate downloading is also a perk.  Etsy is my favorite place to shop for baby embroidery files because the many and varied sellers offer the cutest original digital files and so far they have all stitched up beautifully. The cute little lion on this handmade patchwork bib was very simple and fun to stitch. You can check out some others I have created and the directions for them  here and here.


I always add an absorbent terry cloth backing and easy to use snaps on my handmade bibs.



Also waiting in my stash for this sweet little guy to cuddle in was this colorful giraffe receiving blanket  


Here are some good instructions on how to create this flannel self binding blanket.

And, of course, a matching card.  

Can't wait to bundle my handmade love in a bright package and go visit this little cutey and his  happy, relieved mom.  

Happy New Year, Everyone.

Thanks for visiting.
Go forth and create something fabulous.
Nancy







Saturday, December 22, 2018

Snowflake Fold and Flip Christmas Card - Sizzix Thinlits Die Set

Like snowflakes, we are all beautiful in our own way.


A group of my talented crafting buddies meet once a month to do parchment craft cards and I  hate to admit it, but I'm a Pergamano dropout.  I have all the tools from classes we took together, but I just can't seem to commit myself to all the hours it takes to complete these gorgeous projects.  So when I needed a card to make for these ladies for our annual Christmas lunch, I wanted something fancy and lacy, without having to take my tools out and struggle through a parchment project.


My friends would have appreciated any handmade card I chose to make, but I was surprised and delighted when I found this Sizzix Christmas snowflake thinlits die set in my stash from years gone by!  The center die cut images are meant to create a completed fold and flip card,  but I chose to mount the assembled card on my usual a 5 x 7 card stock base.  I used white and two shades of blue glitter card stock for my die cuts. Rhinestones were added to my snow flakes for added sparkle.  My white front panel needed some texture, so I embossed a chevron design to mimic some of the snowflake geometric designs.

The pretty layered snowflake opens up to reveal some die cut seasonal words in glossy silver.  Noel was included in the set, but I chose to use just the other three die cut words. 

Best of all, this card is a two-fer.  When the snowflake is opened on the front of the card, a beautiful message is revealed and then I get another opportunity  for a sentiment on the inside of the card.  Lot's of convenient card real-estate for sending good wishes.

Speaking of good wishes, I wish you all a very Merry Christmas and a blessed 2019.

Thanks for visiting.
Go forth and create something fabulous.
Nancy 

Playing along with:
        
        

Wednesday, December 19, 2018

Celebrate the Joy of the Season - Lori Whitlock 3-D Snowman SVG

Snowman Wisdom: Stand tall, be cool, accessorize, smile, make people happy just by being you, go outside, things will all turn out if you just stick together. 


Lori Whitlock svg, dotted and glitter Bazzill card stock, Nuvo Drops, rhinetones, 
Merry Christmas, everyone.

A cheerful wintry snowman scene seemed like the perfect way to wish my loved ones Merry Christmas this year.  It's  about 60 degrees outside right now in sunny California so conjuring up a white Christmas in my craft room is a fun way to get in the spirit.

I made about thirty of these cards, so I needed them to be less labor intensive than my usual cards, but I wanted them to also reflect the love and care I spent making them.  I chose this cute Lori Whitlock svg and cut the layers out on my Cricut Explore Air. I created dimension be alternating dotted and glitter Bazzill card stock for the sky, snow and card front.  The smaller pieces like the nose and holly were cut out on plain white cardstock so I could easily color them with my Copics.  This is so much faster and easier. Why didn't I think of this earlier?

The shiny black eyes and buttons on my snowman are black Nuvo drops.  I added rhinestones to the centers of my snowflakes for sparkly dimension.


A little sprig of pine and a rhinestone embellish the die cut inside message.

Thanks for visiting.
Go forth and create something fabulous.
Nancy

Playing along with:


Tuesday, December 18, 2018

Quilted Fabric Trays - Benartex Blue, White and Yellow Layer Cake

My creative tribe and I never seem to have enough storage for all our crafting paraphernalia, so I knew this quilted fabric tray would be the perfect little Christmas gift to sew for my paper crafting besties.  I had a Benartex layer cake in my stash with cheerful designs and colors that look a lot like the designer paper we use on our cards. A quick "fabric tray" google came up with a few different options for making the tray, so I combined all my favorite instructions and came up with this fun and easy result.


An old tea napkin holder that  I bought years ago at a craft fair helped me determine the size for my trays.  I was excited when I realized these dimensions were the perfect size to use with a ten-inch layer cake.  I have actually used my napkin holder many times, so I bought packages of napkins to fill my trays for a cute gift presentation. The size of the bottom of your tray will depend on the depth you choose to sew the sides.  My sides are 1 1/2 inches high and the bottom is about 5 3/4 inches square. These portable, lightweight trays are very versatile for other uses (see above).  I think my friends will enjoy using them for little crafty embellishments like sequins,  rhinestones and charms, as well as small dies and die cuts and, well, anything they want to keep track of in the sea of creativity that usually ends up in their craft space.  I can't wait  to make a few red and white ones for my craft room when the Christmas craziness is over.  Here's how I made them:


Iron fusible fleece to the wrong side of
one square.

Start with  two ten-inch squares of fabric
Sew right sides together and trim corners.
Leave a small opening for turning.


Turn right side out and push out corners
with a skewer.




Mark for quilting.
Quilt as desired.

Mark corners with handmade template
 and sew. Size will depend on how deep
you want the tray to be.
  So easy for assembly line quilting.
.




One layer cake makes about 20, so make a bunch!


Thanks for visiting.
Go forth and make something fabulous.
Nancy