Blog Hop Winner Plus Friday's This & That

Happy Friday everyone!  While many of you are doing your "TGIF" dance, I am making a road trip.... Ian's fall break is over so I am returning him to Atlanta today.  Classes start again on Monday and this will give him a couple of days to settle back in to life in his apartment.

I did remember that today is BLOG CANDY WINNER day.  Once again I would like to thank CUSTOM CROPS for sponsoring this month' s Bitten by the Bug 2 blog hop!!  I used to generate a random winner.

And the winner is: 

Jill (who) said...
Love the quote "Piles of Smiles"! So cute! Nice card!

Congratulations Jill, you will be hearing from Custom Crops soon!

Some of you may recall that several weeks ago I photographed my daughter in our backyard, using a side and corner of the house as backdrops/props for the photographs.  While I had Ian at home, he too agreed to a 10 minute backyard photo shoot.  Seriously, he only gave me 10 minutes!

I photographed Ian on the same side/corner of our house where Bethany was photographed.  Then we moved further into the backyard.

Ian brought out his Gretsch guitar (which he loves) and allowed me to grab a few more shots of him and his favorite toy!

I thought the photos turned out well for a 10 minute photo shoot!  I wonder how well we could have done if Ian had given me a half an hour??!!?

I hope you all have a great Friday!

Sympathy Card for a Friend

This card was originally from a class I took at the Creating Keepsakes Convention in Charlotte, NC last month.  It was part of a Heartfelt Creations class.  We completed one 12 x 12 layout in class using Spellbinders and stamps, as well as learning to make templates to use with nestie stamps.   All of that being said, I finally dug out the class kit and decided to make the card. 

I had to shape the flowers and assemble the card.  I also had to add a sentiment to the nesties label on the front. 

I forgot to take a photo but I added a white rectangle and stamped a very pretty sympathy sentiment on the inside of the card.  I know that this card probably was not designed to be a sympathy card, but I have a friend who recently lost her husband to cancer and I thought she would appreciate a pretty card.  She is the sweetest woman and hate that she is going through this.

Now that I have depressed you, remember that as part of the BBTB2 monthly blog hop I have BLOG CANDY up for grabs below.  Just be a blog follower and leave a comment under MONDAY'S BLOG HOP post.  I will be drawing a random winner on Friday. 

Libby's Wedding and Card

Last Saturday we celebrated my friend Beth's daughter's wedding.  Libby and her beau Alton were married here in downtown Aiken with a lovely reception afterwards at the Aiken Art Center.  I have previously shared how my scrapbook girlfriends and I helped Beth create tags for the favors and the hospitality bags, as well as a few other details.  It was nice to see the finished results of our efforts.

Libby's wedding colors were navy blue and light blue with a touch of red.  I used the same color scheme to create a card for she and Alton.

I started with a basic white card.  Using Spellbinder's Nestabilities I cut label number 18 for the front of the card.  I also used my favorite edge nesties, including using leftover cuts to create the corners. 

I embossed a piece of white cardstock and matted it on navy cardstock for the front of the card.  I then added the edging and the label.  

I used a stamp set from Michael's to create the word art stamp on the front of the label.  I applied the stamps to a acrylic block, filling in the negative area with the tiny bride and groom.

The roses, the touch of red from Libby's colors, were created using the 3D roses on the Art Philosophy cartridge.  I edged the roses with accent leaves and some stickles highlights.

The inside of the card was stamped with a generic Congratulations stamp. 

After I took these photos (yes, really, after....) I went back and added light blue Copic to the edge of groom stamp and to the edges of the white label. 

This is my friend Beth and her Mom, Ms. Sally, looking lovely at the reception.

Diana (MFK's daugher), Peggy, MFK - My Friend Kathy, and Toby at the reception.

Doug and I having a quick snuggle at the reception.

And dancing to a sweet love song.....

And me, having a lovely evening with my friends celebrating the marriage of a wonderful couple.

Congratulations Libby and Alton!!!

BBTB2 September Blog Hop

Welcome to the September Bitten by the Bug 2 blog hop!   If you are following the blog hop you probably arrived here from the blog of our very talented Penny, PennieAnnies.

If you are a follower who is stopping by my blog, when you finish here be sure to go to the BBTB2 blog and start the hop as you will not want to miss a thing!

Our BBTB2 challenge cut of the week was selected by my awesome fellow Michigan State Alumni, Donna of Popsicle Toes.  Donna selected the wheelbarrow cut from Walk in my Garden cartridge.  I do own the WIMG cartridge, but I wanted to be different so I chose to use the wheelbarrow image with the little girl from A Child's Year.

I used three cartridges to create this card:  A Child's Year, Art Philosophy, and Cheerful Seasons.  I designed the card in Cricut Design Studio.  The base card and front matting were cut using Art Philosophy.  I used Cheerful Seasons to cut extra maple leaves to fill my wheelbarrow and to scatter around.

So now on to the blog hop:  Yes, yes, I do have blog candy for the blog hop!  Custom Crops is generously sponsoring my blog for this monthly blog hop, and they will be awarding one blog hopper with a $20 gift voucher to spend at their site!  How cool is that?  All you have to do to be registered for the blog hop is leave a comment under this post and be a follower of this blog. 

If you have not been by Custom Crops in the last few days you are going to be overwhelmed with quantity of new products they have in stock.  There are over 1,000 new products on the Custom Crops web site.  Additionally, there is a special Halloween/Autumn category for all of your fall and Halloween decorating and scrapping. If you love fall as much as I do, you will want to head right over and check out all of the cute autumn crafting products!!!

I am the last stop on the BBTB2 blog hop.  We hope you decided to create your own wheelbarrow project and play along with us this week.  Just post your project at the BBTB2 site to enter.
Thanks for hopping by today - I will be back tomorrow with a new project to share - along with a few photos of a weekend event!

Playing with Stamps, Embossing Powders & Shrink Film

My Cricut had a HUGE work out on Wednesday - three and a half hours of constant cutting.  I had designed bulletin board borders and fill for my future daughter in law's classroom.  Crissie is a theater teacher so I used tickets as the theme.  Most teachers need a word wall - words that apply to their area of study.  For part of the border I cut Crissie's theater words in the tickets, backing the tickets in a contrasting color, filling in the negative areas (middle of D, P, O, etc), making the words readable.  I also made large, super-sized tickets for Crissie to use a mats for her photos of Broadway shows.  There were more cuts, some very detailed and some very simple. 

My son was in town for two days and I wanted to send Crissie' bulletin board cuts home with him to save myself a trip to the post office (I hate going to the post office!).  To wind up this long tale, I taught Aaron to use my Cricut with Design Studio.  I had to cut one page in my design over and over again so I decided Aaron could do this.  He did great, and cut the ticket borders while I worked on the word wall tickets. 

Aaron left for home a bit later than he planned, but with all of the materials for Crissie's bulletin boards in tow. 

After that work out I decided that my Cricut had earned a rest.  Actually I intended to cut pieces for a card and use an older set of Close to My Heart stamps, but I started playing with the stamp set and never used the Cricut.

I was using an older fall stamp set.  I begin by stamping a solid pumpkin in embossing ink onto textured cardstock.  I then used three colors of embossing powders to highlight and define the shape.  I used scissors to cut out the stamped image. 

I used oval nestabilities and cut out matting for my pumpkin.  And at this point I took a serious detour through - play - with - toys - in - a - new - way - land!

I came across a package of shrink film and decided to play with that.  Actually at first I wondered if I could stamp on acetate and let it dry.  It never dried nicely.  So I moved on to shrink film.  I stamped the pumpkin shaped word overlay stamp (the same size as the embossed pumpkin) onto the film.  I cut out the pumpkin and then used my embossing gun to shrink the film.  It looked good, except it needed color. 

I stamped the base pumpkin and colored in the shape with orange Copic marker.  I then stamped the words over the marker.  After shrinking the pumpkin with the heat embossing gun I had created the pumpkin charm on the front of the card!

Basically I spent three hours playing with embossing powders, stamps, acetate, shrink film and ink... And ALL I managed to create was one Thanksgiving card.  (Shaking my head at myself) ....  I am a bit amused and a bit annoyed with myself.  On the other hand, I did have a learning opportunity with the shrink film.

Cricut Banner Contest Entry #2 (My Favorite But Don't Tell #1)

I had originally planned to wait to share my Cricut Banner Contest entry until closer to the contest date, but it seems many of us are sharing on the Cricut Message Boards.  So once I shared this project on the MB on Tuesday, I decided I should post it here also. 

I used two Cricut machines and five cartridges to complete this banner:  Cricut Imagine and the Imagine Black & White cartridge, Cricut Expression with Straight From the Nest, Elegant Cakes, Calligraphy, and Everyday Cricut.

I had such a good time making this banner; it just seemed to all come together for me.  I began by printing sheets of cardstock in my Imagine machine.  Using the Black and White cartridge I printed the cardstock for the back layer using white cardstock with black print.  Next I printed the pink and black cardstock by printing on pink cardstock. 

I had previously created a cut file in Cricut Design Studio.  I used Calligraphy to cut the base pennant layer using the black and white I cardstock I printed.  Next I cut the solid pink pennant layer.  And finally I cut the black and pink pennant layer.  I used my ATG and adhered all three layers together.  

Next I cut the white scalloped pennant tops.  At this point I moved on to the Elegant Cake cartridge cuts.  I started with the elegant scroll cut at the top of the pennant pieces.  I used a Xyron to apply adhesive to the scrolls and then attached the scrolls to the pennants. 

I cut the two piece elegant scroll frames with the Elegant Cakes cartridge.  I used solid black and solid white cardstocks for these cuts.  Again I used the Xyron to apply adhesive to the scrolls before attaching them to the white base layers.

Using bright pink cardstock and the Everyday Cricut cartridge I cut the word "Cricut".  I also cut to green, white, and black Cricut logos.  Using liquid glue, I glued the Cricut Logo pieces together and glued them onto two of the scroll pieces.  I glued the Cricut letters to the remaining scroll pieces.  I used pop dots to affix the scroll pieces to the pennant sections.

Using diamond bling, I added highlight of bling to the letters and scroll pieces.  I did not want to over do with diamond bling as I planned to add the pink crystals.

I am going to admit that I had to go on-line to find the pink crystals.  I knew what I wanted to do with this pennant, but had trouble finding the right crystals.  Finally I got lucky and found the pink crystals on ebay!! 

The crystals came with gold tone hardware to attach them to the pennant.  Sadly, gold tone did not work with my color scheme.  Then I remembered that I had a silver leafing pen!! Woo-hoo for the silver leafing pen.  It completely covered the gold as simply as coloring with a marker.  I will use this technique again!!  After the coloring, I pierced the pennant tips and attached the crystals.

The last step of the project was to add ribbons.  I used 1.5 inch wide white organza ribbon to tie the pennant pieces together.  I then added solid black ribbon as well as pink and white ribbons to the pennant.

I will admit that I am quite pleased with this pennant.  I viewed some fabulous banners on the Cricut MB, but I still like this one.  And while it may not win the contest, it made me happy to create it!!

Cricut's Banner Contest - "Warm Up" Entry

Just as when I am playing a sport, I often need a warm up with a big project.  I know that sounds crazy, but I find that I do better on the second project if I "warm up" and get the creative mojo flowing.  The Cricut Banner Contest was no exception.  This is my warm up contest entry.

I began with with several sheets of acetate - clear plastic-like material - and using the Cricut Expression set on 4 multi cuts, I cut the bottom layer for my banner sections.  Three Cricut cartridges were used to create this banner:  Art Philosophy, Cricut Everyday, and George & Basic Shapes.

I used the new Art Philosophy cartridge to create the banner main structure pieces - the acetate base layer, the pennant shaped colored layers, the background shape under the rosettes, the scalloped topper, and the scalloped circles.

George and Basic Shapes contributed two shapes to the banner - the circles in the middle of the scalloped circles and the long rectangles used to create the rosettes.  The circles were sized to fit the middle of the scalloped circles and to be just a bit larger than the letters. 

To create the rosettes, I looked at my Tim Holtz Sizzix rosette die and decided to create a Cricut version.  After all I could not use a Sizzix die on my Provo Craft project!  Using Cricut Design Studio, I cut eight rectangles measuring 11.5 inches tall by 1.5 inches wide.  I place score marks (created by shrinking the rectangle down to a tiny dash) every 1/4 inch along the length of the rectangle.  After cutting the rectangles, I used my score pal and scored across the width of the rectangle on each hash mark.  I then folded on the scored lines and glued the ends together.

I assembled the banner in layers beginning with the acetate pennants, followed by the colored pennant, then the light green matting, followed by the rosettes, then the scalloped top piece and finally the scalloped circle, regular circle, and letters. 

I added Stickles to the bottom of each pennant section in colors to match the individual cuts and to all of the letters and Cricut heads. 

I completed the banner by with coordinating ribbons.  I used 1.5 inch white organza ribbon to tie the sections  together.  I then used green, pink and aqua ribbons tied to the organza ribbon to add additional festive colors. 

This banner was a lot of work as warm up projects go.  However I think it was worth it.  My second banner turned out really well.  And while it may not win, it is still very pretty and something that had fun creating.

Time For Fun Halloween Set

Happy Monday everyone.  Today's Bitten by the Bug 2 project was selected by our Design Team leader, Heather.  Heather choose the "Time 4 Fun" cut from Cricut's Cutting Up cartridge.  I do not own the Cutting Up cartridge so I chose to create my own welded phrase using Happy Hauntings

I used four cartridges to create this project:  Happy Hauntings, Forever Young, Art Philosophy, and George & Basic Shapes.   Using the Happy Haunting alphabet I welded the characters to create the "Time 4 Fun" phrase that the design team is using this week.  I created a two layer tag using the Art Philosophy card and affixed the two layer word phrase to the tag.  I added black ribbons and tied them with variegated orange twine.

The base box was created using Forever Young.  I placed two identical sheets of 12 x 12 inch cardstock placed side by side on the 12 x 24 inch cutting mat.  After completing the cut I adhered the two halves of the box together with ATG tape.   I had to do this because I did not have any 12 x 24 inch Halloween cardstock.  I scored along the score lines and creased the folds, but left the box open so that I could add the decorative cuts to a flat surface.

Using George and Basic Shapes I welded circles and ovals together to create the orange and silver inlaid matting on the side of the purse.  The edges were inked with black ink before adhesive was added and the mat was affixed the box/purse side. 

 Continuing to use the Happy Haunting cartridge, I cut Dracula at four inches tall and the lady "monster" at 3.6 inches tall.  I created hand cut cocktails for each of the creatures - Dracula is sipping a bag of blood while his date has a deep red cocktail. 

Above and below are close ups of my Halloween dating creatures!

For the purse handle I cut the layered BOO! cut from Happy Hauntings.  I adhered the cut to top of the purse handle.  I also cute several spiderwebs.  I used the same damask print that I used on Dracula's cape and his date's dress to cut the spiderwebs.  I like the effect of the two color print on the spiderwebs.

I forgot to mention that most of designer paper used on this project (and used as a background for the photographs) is the new Halloween line by SEI.

Thanks for stopping by today.  I will be back with a few additional projects this week.  Midweek I will share photos of the two banners I made for Provo Craft's E2 Banner Contest.  In the meantime, if you have not already done so, please go by Bitten by the Bug 2 and check out the other designers' takes on the "Time 4 Fun" cuts.  Also, consider making your own Time 4 Fun project and playing along with us this week. 

Spooky Halloween Labels For Everyday Cricut

Happy Saturday!  It is the third Saturday of the month and that means it is my day to share a project with you at Everyday Cricut.  This week I am using Cricut's Happy Hauntings cartridge to decorate bottles/decanters/canisters for Halloween entertaining.  For more details and to see more photos visit Everyday Cricut.

I also have news to share.... Beginning Saturday, October 1st, I will be designing for Everyday Cricut twice a month.  From now on I will share projects on the first and third Satrudays.  I am super excited and very appreciative of this opportunity for additional work with Melanie and Joy!