Friday, November 28, 2014

Triangle Christmas card

This is truly a triangle card!!  It is triangular on all three sides and the amazing thing is that it can be folded and mailed in a regular
envelope!!  I started with three 4.25" squares of red cardstock each scored and folded diagonally.  I cut the decorative paper to 4" square and trimmed it diagonally - a perfect fit on the large triangular areas.  The little pieces (back side of paper) were cut to 1.5" square and cut diagonally.  I added faux stitching to the large triangles using a black gel pen.

The front features a vellum greeting which I folded over the edges of the paper and secured with double sided tape.

I added a length of black cording which I also adhered to the back with double sided tape and tied on a short piece to simulate a bow.  The scallop accent was glued over the cording and features layered punchies - the watercoloured poinsettia (Beccy's Place) over a green circle (SU) over a black scalloped circle (SU).  I hand cut a half circle to tuck the back flap of the card into so it would stand nicely.
You can see here what the card looks like open flat. It will be folded down the center, inserted into the envelope and sent on its way to my swap partner.
Below you can see the individual pieces before I glued them together.  The white strips is double sided tape before I peeled off the release paper.

My card will not fit into an A2 sized envelope so I will have to find a larger envelope.  To make one to fit into an A2 envelope use 4" squares for the cardstock and reduce the sizes appropriately for the decorative paper.  If you decide to make some of these for A2 envelope consider using 12" x 12" cardstock - it would yield nine 4"x 4" squares which would make 3 cards.
Really enjoyed making this card!!  Love swaps for stretching my creativity!!


Giftie Mingle on By Hand group

These are my little gifties all wrapped and ready to go to my partners for the 2014 Giftie Mingle on the By Hand group.  The contents will be revealed here after Christmas once everyone has received and opened their little gifts.  It is always fun to participate in this mingle.  I have received some wonderful little pieces of art and lovely little gifts from this swap in years past.  
For packaging my little gifts I used a tag die to create an envelope.  I cut a strip of green decorative cardstock to 3 1/8" and folded it in half.  I was sure to place the fold above the bottom of the tag and the two sides within the sides of the tag on the die.  When I ran it through my Big Kick I cut both the front and the back to the crescent tag shape and because the fold did not reach the bottom of the tag my fold stayed intact.  I used alphabet packing tape to seal up both sides, inserted my little gift, added a bit of tissue paper on top and tied closed the envelope with red fiber including my little tag.  I stamped JOY (Quietfire) on the front of the tag in red and the back of the tag reads DAY 8 which is when my little gifts will be opened by all my swap partners.  


Heart calendar

 Another calendar for the holiday season!!  I used heart photos from The Morgue File for this calendar.  I downloaded and cropped them to really highlight the hearts.  I am really happy with the selection I found on the site.  All the photos are free to use in all sorts of projects.  I converted them to black and white in Adobe Photo Elements by clicking on "Enhance" and then "Convert to black and white". You can make more adjustments with the sliders in that window until your image is exactly as you want it to be.
In Corel Draw I sized the images to fit inside the 4" x 4" inch black frame I made leaving just a slight gap of white which really helps to frame the images. Once all the images had been adjusted I printed them on white cardstock and trimmed around them using a ruler and exacto knife.  I used a black sharpie marker on the edges so the white core did not show.  I used the calendar I created in Word Perfect for this calendar on this one as well.  I glued my images to the top portion of my red 8.5``x 5.5``pieces of cardstock and the trimmed calendar pages to the bottom portion.
I added black rick rack to the area in between them using glue dots to adhere the two ends to the edge of the cardstock. It needed a bit of something so I added a length of white thread which I intertwined with the rack rack.  Really like the look of it!!  I used white glue to adhere the ends to the cardstock. To add a bit more texture, I added a tied off length of red seaming binding below the rick rack and a silver heart punchie above with a large glue dot.
Here are all the pages I created.  This calendar is double sided - January to June on one side and July to December on the other!!

I have created a few more calendars this season.  Here are links to them:
Birdie calendar, handmade paper and pressed botanicals and one that features tarot card images.
Are you creating some gifts for the holiday season??
Would love to hear what you are creating!!

Leave me a comment and link to your creations if you have them online!!


Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Cards featuring beautiful botanical paper

Cards for my stash!!  I created the decorative paper I used on these cards while I was working on this calendar.  I sandwiched pressed flowers and foliage between two layers of tissue paper with matt Modge Podge.  I love the way it turned out so I decided to make some cards with it!!  I trimmed the edges to be square and even then cut the large sheet down to 3.75" squares.  I created some ivory layers (4" x 5.25") with a variety of coloured printed greetings and stitched my
beautiful paper to the top portions of them using ivory thread.  To embellish these layers I used ribbon, bakers twine, seam binding, sequins and brads.  It was fun to make them different and yet very similar.  Once I was finished, I glued these layers to coordinating card fronts to finish off my cards.  I have a few pieces of this decorative paper left and a few long scraps as well.  They may show up in cards in the new year.

Here is how I made this decorative paper. I folded a large sheet of white tissue in half to give me a mark for the middle.  I opened it up, placed it over a silicone sheet and applied Modge Podge to the left half, a few areas at the time adding botanicals (blue hydrangeas, vetch, delphiniums and some yellow flower petals) as I went.  Once the whole half was covered with botanicals and glue I applied Modge Podge to the other half and folded it over to completely cover the left hand side.
I continued to apply Modge Podge to the top surface until everything was well coated and left it to dry over night.  Voila!  Some beautiful botanical paper!!


Tarot card calendar

 Another calendar for the holiday season!  It is a gift you can give anyone!!  Overnight, I remembered I had these wonderful image in my stash so yesterday morning I went searching and was lucky enough to find them straight away!!  They come from a glossy publication that I purchased years ago at a thrift store.  At the time, I thought they were wonderful images and would certainly work into one of my projects somewhere along the way. They are images of very old tarots cards - from a time when they were all hand painted and used by royalty to play a game. I trimmed the images leaving a slim black border.  I cut kraft cardstock to 3.5" x 8.5" (6 of them) and stamped a flourish background (IO) on the top portion using black ink then mounted my image.  I punched a ribbon border (SU) out of black cardstock and mounted it below the stamping using a glue stick.  I adhered my trimmed 2015 calendar page (12 to page from which I sponged lightly around the edges below that using a glue stick.  This is a double sided calendar - January to June are on one side and July to December on the other.  I did the one side first and then when I was doing the back sides I positioned the ribbon borders back to back.  I pierced through a hole on each end so I could align them exactly over each other.  Once they were dry, I pierced all the holes with a push pin over foam and used gold embroidery thread to add stitching to the ribbon border. Love the way it turned out!!!  I created straight stitches on one side and diagonal ones on the other.

Thinking they needed just a bit more texture I added gold coins using large glue dots.

Just enough embellishment!!  Here are all the pages I created!!  I do have a few images left over for another project!!

You can check out the other calendars I have created here and here!

 One uses handmade paper and pressed botanicals and the other, little blue bird collage photos  

reused from a 2014 calendar.  

These are quick and easy!!  You
can use themed paper, printed digital images, printed clipart or old calendar images as 

  your focal elements.  Just work out your cardstock size by laying out your images, calendar pages and any 
other elements you would like to add for texture and interest. 

I hope you are well on your way in preparing for the holiday season!!  
I am very happy with the calendars I have created and am looking forward to getting my Christmas cards out the door!!


Sunday, November 23, 2014

Pressed botanicals and handmade paper calendar

 Another calendar for this season's gift giving!!  I created this one from handmade paper I made a while back and some pressed botanicals which I pressed many years ago.  I went through my stash of pressed botanicals yesterday.  Quite a few of the flowers have faded losing most of their colour so they will have to go into the compost bin.  The few who are still beautiful will be sorted and stored for another day.
I started by tearing sheets of white handmade paper into twelve 4.25" squares and choosing 12 different pressed botanicals to use - one for each month.  I used thinned Matt Modge Podge to adhere the botanicals to the handmade paper then coated a piece of white tissue paper and laid it "glue side down" over the botanicals applying yet more Modge Podge to the outer surface until everything was nicely sealed.  I left them to dry and then pressed them between parchment paper under weight over night.

I chose cardstock (8.5" x 5.5") that coordinated with my botanicals and stamped them on both sides with a coordinating ink using a flourish background stamp (IO).  I glued my printed calendar pages to the bottom section of each piece of cardstock and applied a strip of double sided tape just about in the center and adhered some small pieces of ribbon to it which creates a fun textured border between the main element and the calendar page.  Once the ribbon pieces were in place I used double sided tape to
hold my handmade paper elements in place and then sewed all the way around to attach them to my cardstock.  These are double sided pages - January to June are on one side and July to December are on the other.
Once they were all finished I wrote the names of the botanicals on the handmade paper elements by hand using a fine tipped Sharpie marker. Really happy with this calendar!  Subtle backgrounds, lots of texture from the handmade paper, flowers and ribbon and a cohesive look overall.  Here is a look at all the pages I created.

 I created a similar calendar last week which you can view here using little birdie collage photos.  I am really loving this format and appreciate that the pages can be held together with a bull clip for easy hanging.  This calendar is somewhat thicker than the last one
 because of the many layers of handmade paper.  I am glad to be using some of my handmade paper as I have quite a stash of it from the last few years.   A person can make many sheets of paper in a day so it doesn't take long that you have more than you can readily use.  I will be

making an effort to include it in more of my creations in the new year.

I hope you are all getting your Christmas cards ready to go and getting around to any Christmas gifts that you make for family and friends.  Thanks to my group swaps I have been exploring some gift giving options for this holiday season.


Saturday, November 22, 2014

Calendar with collage photos

I created a calendar this afternoon using 4"x 4" photos trimmed from my little bluebird calendar.  The calendar was a Christmas gift from my sister last year.  She creates 4"x 6" photo calendars for sale using her photographs.  She photographed my little 4" x 4" collages last year and created a calendar with them.
I used the originals on a swap calendar last year and thought it would be really cool to reuse these little images and give them another go around in the world.

I started with six half sheets (8.5" x 5.5")  of black cardstock and stamped a flourish background (IO) on the top portion using silver pigment ink on both sides.
 I trimmed the calendar portion off of my 4"x 6" calendar pages which left me with 4"x 4" photo images.

I created these little buttons for my embellishments.  They are a digital image which I laser printed, punched out, sponged on the edges and added white thread through the holes I punched in the center.

I used double sided tape to glue my blue bird collage images over the stamped backgrounds and used glue stick to adhere my printed calendar pages. The pages were created in Word Perfect inserting numbers into a table.  January to June are on one side and July to December are on the backs.  I wrapped white thread around the calendar between the two pieces and tied the ends off on the left.  I covered that with one of my little buttons using a large glue dot.  On the back, I simply tied a piece of the same thread on the left hand side to simulate a knot and added my button the same way.

 Here are all of the calendar pages I created.

They can be held together with a bull clip at the top and hung on a nail OR stuck to a magnet on any metal surface.

They could also be punched with a small hole punch in the top center and hung on a pin OR strung on a ribbon or cording and hung almost anywhere.
I am in the process of producing several calendars - a couple for swaps I have joined and several as gifts for the holiday season.  I have not yet decided which calendar will go where!!


Thursday, November 20, 2014

Birthday card with wood and chevron background

I made this card for my Dad who is turning 85 next week!!  We count every day a blessing that he is still with us and that my parents are still living independently.
I started with a green card front which I stippled (SU) with brown ink in an all over pattern. I created two pieces of background paper by gluing 3/4" strips of green decorative paper diagonally to a half sheet of cardstock.  I cut them into 1" strips and then glued them to each other using cello tape to create a chevron pattern.  I glued five strips together matching the pattern to which gave me 3 pieces of background paper.  I cut each one of these in two which gave me 6 pieces of chevron paper.
To embellish the one on this card, I used a 90 degree corner of cardstock to mask off the chevrons and sponged on some brown ink to give them some dimension.  I added some faux stitching on one edge using a brown fine tip Sharpie and glued it to the left side of my card front.  I used a digital image of tools from Beccy's Place which I laser printed, trimmed, watercoloured and sponged a bit on the edges after I had distressed them.  I glued it to my card front with 3D foam tape overlapping the background a bit.  I mounted my sponged and watercoloured oval punchie greeting to a thin piece of walnut wood and tucked it under my image and glued it in place using double sided tape.
I like to use actual pieces of wood on my Dad's cards because he was a carpenter all his life.  In my mind, he and wood are very connected.  I am fortunate that DH is a wood worker and brings in any thin pieces of wood that he creates in the course of making projects in the garage.  This particular piece comes from a cross grain cutting board that he and my son worked on a while back.


Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Altered glasses case

 I finally refurbished my glasses case this morning!!  It has been a while since I noticed that it was wearing and either needed to be refurbished or replaced.  I am super happy with how it turned out and it will be easier to find in my purse now because it has more contrast!!
 So, this is how it looked before I started.  It had fabric glued to the metal case.  Have to say that it was fairly durable because I bought it used probably 10 years ago.
The covering was fairly easy to peel off.  The inside was a bit corroded but it is in fine shape otherwise.  Mechanism still works properly and is not too complicated.
 I managed to get all the glue off and sanded it down inside and out which removed most of the roughness of the corrosion that had occurred on the inside.  It looked pretty neat as it was but thought it would look more interesting with a bit more attitude!!
 I used fabric tape for the inside.  It took four strips of tape to do the whole inside. I started with the lid and then did the bottom.  The two middle strips overlapped nicely to cover the mechanism.  I trimmed the tape to the edges of the case.
Then I covered the outside with this cool lettered packing tape!!  It took four strips to cover the outside as well.  I did the lid first and then the base with the strips overlapping at the hinge.  I trimmed the packing tape on the inside to leave an even overlap to the inside.
I am super happy with how it turned out.  If and when it wears through or starts looking rough again I will consider removing the tape with a heat gun, spray painting it and creating a little quiltie for the inside.  For today, this project has been time efficient and I really like the look!!