Saturday, June 25, 2016

Secret Garden Tea

Welcome.  I had a great afternoon tea with some very special, and dear girlfriends today.  {smile}  We ate delicious, delicate, tiny morsels and drank perfectly paired tea.  Devine!
I had such a lovely time, I simply can't stop smiling.  So, in my hand-made style, I crafted some 'Thank You' cards to send to these ladies.  {smile}
I stopped by a 'new to me' sketch challenge site, to get a direction.  I went to Your Next Stamp to play along with their sketch challenge.  

I wanted to make a card that is feminine, and pretty.  So, this is what I came up with:

Recipe:  This is a typical A2 size card (4 1/4" x 5 1/2").  The card base is Lost Lagoon from Stampin' Up!.  I used this pretty pattern paper from Belle Vie and the Julie Nutting collection.  I added some machine stitching.  I also added some purposefully short trims:  a vintage cream, cotton eyelet trim, and an antique rose seam binding.  I tied a simple bow and adhered it to the card front.  I hand-stamped the sentiment and used a hand held decorative label shape punch.  I added two black brads to hold the sentiment to the card front.  I wanted some bling, so I added a trio of flat back rhinestones.  Viola!  Quick, easy, and super pretty!
Thank you for looking.  I need to get back into my craft room and create 11 more. {smile}  I hope you have been influenced to play along with this sketch challenge!

Monday, June 20, 2016

Vintage Charms

Howdy!  So, I wanted to share a few projects I have been working on.  As you may know, I am hosting Bunco next month, and I make all the prizes (and dinner, of course {smile}).  I typically make all of their prizes out of paper.  But, this year, I wanted to try something a little different.  Still hand-made, but a bit more versatile.  So, I have decided on jewelry.  I know what you are thinking, 'what?' that's a bit more complicated.  All of these ladies have several black greeting cards (from me), and I wanted to change things up.  
I came across some jewelry making supplies, when I was looking for a specific vintage cotton trim, and so I decided to continue to use what I have, and not spend more money.  (my husband will love that part {smile})

my first bracelet:

and my first necklace:

I know what you are about to say, 'where are the jump rings to hold the charms on?'.  Well, I know I have a package or two around here somewhere, I just haven't located them, yet.  But, I wanted to share with you, my progress.  {smile}  The oval charms, are from a jewelry making kit I purchased probably 3 years ago (ok, maybe longer) Craft Fantastic.  I just never gotten around to crafting them {frown}.   The various charms I already had in my stash.  I use charms on several crafts.  They make great little additions and pretty surprises to packaging (gift card holders, small boxes, fancy cards, etc.).
Recipe Love Bracelet:  The bracelet strand is from a big box craft store (HL).  The pink resin blossom is from another big box store (M).  The key and heart charms are retired products from Stampin' Up!, when they use to do a jewelry line.  And the round pink rhinestone charm is from wally world.  The image inside the oval pendant tray is from Crafty Secrets, from their Heartwarming Vintage Creative Scraps sheet.
Recipe What I Hold in My Heart Necklace:  The chain and the rhinestone cross are from a big box craft store (HL).  The heart lock charm is retired from Stampin' Up!, when they use to do jewelry.  The image inside the oval pendant tray is from Crafty Secrets, from their Heartwarming Vintage Creative Scraps sheet.

My plan is to make 10 necklaces and 6 bracelets.  At this point I only have 4 bracelets 'done'.  And 6 necklaces 'done' and 3 in the works (I can't decide on the image inside the pendant trays).  And whatever jewelry doesn't get selected by my fellow Bunco ladies will go in my Etsy shop for sale.  So, look for those items around mid July.  Thank you for stopping by.  I hope you have been inspired to use the various materials you already have, and make something beautiful and unexpected! {smile}.

Sunday, June 19, 2016

B - U - N - C - O

Howdy! and welcome to my little slice of heaven.  Yeah, crafting is what keeps me going!  I love the whole process.  I'm not too sure my husband loves 'my process'.  But, he doesn't have any household chores, so he doesn't get to vote.  [wow, that sounds kinda mean.]
I belong to a Bunco group.  If you don't know what that is, it is a group of 12 people [ladies in my group] who get together once a month to socialize and play a dice game.  We, each take turns hosting [so everyone comes to your house] and the hostess makes dinner, and provides the 'prizes'.  My turn to host is July 7th.  So, I have already started making stuff, and getting stuff organized.  I am also a theme party planner.  [once my daughter's children are all in school (in about 3 years), we are going to start our own party planning service.  It will be awesome!] I love themes for parties.  I think it helps keep the party organized and focused.  My theme this year, is 'vintage Paris hot air balloons'.  Yep, that is a theme.  Vintage, to help keep me focused as to the over-all look and feel of the decor.  Paris, because who don't love romance, sparkle, and great food!  Hot air balloons, to give the decor a little flair.  It all works.   I purchased my invites from Impressions Paperie @ Etsy, HERE
here are the invites I purchased from Etsy:

I selected my invite first.  That way I would have a more exact color scheme to go with, but you can always select the color theme first.  This is how my prices went.  I knew that I wanted hot air balloons, and I'm a super big fan of shabby chic,  and I love mint and pink, so this is what I decided on.  Super happy with my purchase.  
Since my invite has dictated my exact color scheme, I can proceed on!  So, I decorated some plain ugly letters to sit on the mantel: B, U, N, C, O.  Here they are:

I purchased the letters from one of those big box stores.  They were about $1.49 each.  But, if you shop during a sale, you can get them for 30% off.  Bargain!  and since I plan ahead, I waited for them to go on sale.  I used an opaque gold paint I had on hand (gold, because that is the accent color of the invites).  A quick coat of paint while I was watching TV with my husband.  And then, I grabbed some seam binding that went along with my color scheme (colors found in the invite).  I matched various paper and fabric blossoms I already had on hand.  And the final touch was to add a trio of various 'sparkle' pieces: flat back faux pearls, rhinestones, and enamel dots.  I simply hot glued the multi-loop bows and blossoms on to the letters.

Thank you for stopping by.  I'll share with you more of my Bunco items, soon.  I have a great dinner planned, and the prizes are precious!  Stay tuned!

Wednesday, June 15, 2016

Happy Birthday Charlotte

Howdy, and welcome.  I've been a bit busy.  I have three parties in the planning: an afternoon Friendship Tea in just over a week,  a Dinner @ my house in 3 weeks, and a huge surprise birthday party for 100 guests in August.  So, if I say, that I feel that I am being pulled in a hundred directions, that's true!  Between invites, floor plans, menus, and party favors, my head feels like its swimming and I'm not making any ground.  Oh, and 4 birthday parties for grandchildren.  Whew!  I'm still working full time, taking care of a husband an ex-large dog (159#), cleaning house, cooking dinner every night, laundry, taking call at the hospital, oh yeah, working out at the gym and running.  Prioritizing tasks have now become my homework for the next day.  The cupcakes and cake I made for a friends daughter's wedding over the past weekend were a hit!  So much so, I have a new customer who would like to place an order for a party in July!  Yahoo!  All this hard work is paying off!
But don't fret, I am still here, making beautiful things out of paper!  You know me, a die hard crafter.  {smile}
A special girl friend is having a birthday today, so I decided to make her a card.  (It was mailed yesterday, so it should arrive in her mailbox today!)  I don't care what marketing says, hand made sweetness that arrives in your snail-mail, mail-box is happy mail!  And I still believe that folks LOVE it!
I stopped my a few different favorite challenge sites and decided to play along with the super talented ladies over @ Retro Sketches, with their sketch challenge.  Typically, these ladies do CAS (Clean And Simple) cards, and so my style typically doesn't go with their themes.  But today, I hope I have nailed it.  Maybe it's because I didn't have 2hours to make a card, or maybe I just wanted to do something a bit different.  Anyways, my card isn't my typical shabby chic, vintage-style, extra layers and embellishments.  But, I still like it {smile}!

here is what I made:

Recipe:  I used a Crisp Cantaloupe (retired) card stock by Stampin' Up! for the base.  I love the softer color version of Calypso Coral.  The pattern paper is Charlotte by Close To My Heart.  I love the colors and the different patterns.  It was very easy to work with.  And that's a huge plus in my book.
The black pattern paper is cut to fit the front of the card (4" x 5 1/4").  I simply cut a white floral pattern paper 3" x 5 1/4" and adhered it right on top of the black pattern paper.  I used my Tasteful Trims die (retired) from Stampin' Up! to cut the rick rack piece of silver glitter paper by Stampin' Up!.  I adhered the rick rack to the left side of the card.   For the scallop shaped piece at the top, I used the Tasteful Trims die to cut that piece as well, from a creamy taupe pattern paper.  I adhered that piece to the top, and wrapped some grey seam binding around the top piece.  I tied the seam binding into a simple bow.  
For my sentiment piece, I stamped the greeting in basic black classic ink, onto a scrap piece of shimmer white card stock, all my Stampin' Up! and matted it with a scrap piece of Crisp Cantaloupe card stock.  I cut this piece the same measurements as the floral pattern paper.  It is tucked under the rick rack.  I thought it looked more 'finished' that way.
I did sew my trio of buttons to the card front.  The black button is retired from Stampin' Up!.  The coral color button is from Amuse Studios.  And finally, the grey button is from an old paper collection by My Mind's Eye.
My card didn't look 'done' to me, so I added a flair button to the top of the card, just under the bow.  Its a light grayish blue flourish pattern, that I thought looked very similar to the over all look of the card.  
Well, I hope my friend loves her card.  And I hope you have been inspired to play along with this current sketch challenge.  I'm off to work my day job.  Have a great day, and make something beautiful for someone, even if that someone is YOU!

Wednesday, June 8, 2016

Fast Time and Thanks

Howdy!  As some of you may know, I have started running again this year.  I have also started exercising and eating better.  Yeah, a New Year's Resolution.  I'm not incredibly over weight, but I'm not happy with my weight.  So, I decided that I needed to do something about it.  I joined a gym, lost 13pounds.  Not crazy.  I also learned what to eat for a healthy diet, a clean diet, and what foods actually make me feel better.  
My New Year's Resolution was for my happiness.  I have had several rough years at work.  To the point that I thought about quitting every single day.  But, I'm stubborn.  So, I decided, that I needed to do something for me, for my sanity.  And I am super happy I did.  {smile}  
Anyways, back to what I started with: running again this year.  I did a quick and 'dirty' training (6 weeks) for my first half marathon this year - May 1.  Not the greatest time, but one I am happy with.  {smile}  Well, that whole experience has only made me hungry to train harder, run faster, and feel better at my post runs.  So, I signed up for the local Summer Race Series, in Albuquerque.  I did a charity run this past Saturday - Polly's Run.  A quick pace, a quick distance.  5K [3.1 miles @ 36 minutes (11:16 min/mile)]  I also did this race with my bestie - Nichole B.  She has supported me and my 'pacing' since we started running, and I wanted to say 'Thank You'  to her for her enduring support this past Saturday.  So, I made her a card.  She is also a fellow crafter, so she can appreciate the effort and work that goes into making a card.
I stopped by Mojo Monday to use their current sketch, and get my creativity flowing.

here is what I created:

Recipe:  I created a A2 size card (4 1/4" x 5 1/2")  I used Bashful Blue card stock (retired) by Stampin' Up! for the card base, and the matt.  The navy blue and floral pattern papers are from the same collection: Think To Remember collection by Photo Play Paper Co.
I wrapped a white doily around the upper left corner of the main panel.  The sentiment is from the water color trio stamp set (retired) by Stampin' Up!  I stamped the sentiment onto a scrap piece of white card stock.  I hand cut the flag end.  I adhered the sentiment banner with a single staple.  I tied a triple loop bow with pale blue crinkled seam binding and adhered the bow over the staple.  To add a little sparkle, I added a trio of silver sequins.
Clean.  Simple (for me).  And beautiful.  Just like my bestie!  I hope you find some inspiration and play along with the current sketch challenge from Mojo Monday its 'contest' week!

Tuesday, June 7, 2016

Read, Drink (tea) & Be Merry Card

Good Morning! I hope all is well in your home.  Here, doing ok.  I have a few errands to run today, along with a few chores to accomplish.  But, all in all, it should be a productive day.   As I sit here, getting coupons together, and making my lists, I notice that I forgot failed to publish a blog post.  UGH!  A bit late, and I missed a few challenges, but, here it is.  {grimace} The card that I created did make it into my Etsy shop, HERE.
I need to create a card for a special friend who is hosting an afternoon tea for me and a few (ok, 10) of my girl friends.  She is super talented, creative, and an all around dear lady.  And I stumbled upon a few challenges, that will help get me creating!  So, here we go!
My first stop is Mojo Monday. This sketch is for a tall and skinny card, but I love the layout!  this challenge is currently closed.  I missed their deadline.

My next stop is The Card Concept.  The inspiration for their current challenge, a tea cup with a gorgeous blossom inside.  How stinking cute is that?  Did I mention the color of the tea cup? Vintage blue.  Yeah, and the blossom is this pale pretty pink.  Who could have asked for a better color combo?  The title for their challenge:  Sweet Tea.  this challenge is currently closed, as well.  UGH!

My next stop is Crafting By Designs.  This group of talented ladies really know how to craft a card.  The design team is inspirational and super creative.  Their current challenge:  Anything Goes!  Awesome!  
here is what I made:

I made a typical A2 size card. (4 1/4" x 5 1/2").
I used a single sided card stock, in Latte by Amuse Studios, for the card base.  
The card was then created with scraps of various pattern papers I had on hand.  The beautiful worn wood pattern paper is Paper Studios, County Floral.  The text pattern paper is Melissa Frances.  I added a scrap piece of white cotton trim and did some machine sewing.  
The 'tag' piece is actually a journalling card from the Coffee Break collection by Prima.  I simply trimmed it down and added a banner end.   I added an embellishment from the same collection and adhered it to the 'tag'.  Just to give it a focal point.  The words are in gold.  So, that added some sparkle.
I wrapped some seam binding around the top of the card.  Adhered it to the card front with machine stitching.  {smile}  It is an antique rose color.  But I wanted some bling, so I added some retired silver bakers twine from Stampin' Up!  

I tied a simple bow with the seam binding, but it appeared to need something more, so I also tied a simple bow with my pale pink tinsel.  I think it helps add some sparkle, some vintage flair, and help balance the card.  I tied a tea cup charm onto the stacked bows with some of the bakers twine.  A hidden treasure!
And finally, I added several flat back faux pearls to the card front.  To give it, a feminine touch.   I sponged all the edges with crumb cake classic ink, from Stampin' Up! to help give the card some aged charm.  I thought the stark white edges looked to 'modern'.  
Well, thank you for stopping by.  I hope you have been inspired to play along in these challenges.  I did use the sketch challenge from Mojo Monday for the layout.  However, I missed the deadline to that challenge.  Have a great day, and craft something beautiful!