Father’s Day Card with Treat Box

Father’s Day has passed but I wanted to share a Father’s Day Card with treat box that was published in the June issue of Die Cut Crazy. Thanks Stephanie for letting me share my project! I used Cricut’s Tags, Bags, Boxes, and More 2 for the card and shirt box.

TBBM2 - Father's Day Card and Treat Box

Shirt Box - TBBM2

TBBM2 - shirt treat boxes

TBBM2 - Tie Tag Father's Day Card

Here are some exciting updates happening at Die Cut Crazy (DCC):

  • The digital magazine is now available for the iPhone in addition to the iPad.
  • It’s being tested for the Android platform.
  • A PDF version is in the works and will be available soon at their website: http://diecutcrazymag.com/.
  • They’re offering a two month free subscription. Click on the link for more details, but hurry, the code is only good through July.
  • They’re hosting a summer themed challenge. Submissions are due in 2 days – sorry for the late heads up. The winning entry will get a Sizzix Texture Boutique embossing machine!
  • Die Cut Crazy now offers card and scrapbook galleries to showcase your projects. If you would like your project to be published in DCC, send them an email at diecutcrazymag@gmail.com.
  • Die Cut Crazy is on Instagram. Their name is @diecutcrazy. If you tag your posts with #diecutcrazy, they’re happy to share them with their followers and in the magazine.
  • Follow Die Cut Crazy on Facebook to receive further updates.

Mother’s Day Goodness

I hope everyone had a lovely Mother’s Day! My husband and I spent the day with my Mom and Dad. After Mom opened her gifts and her card, we had a lovely time sitting outside enjoying the gorgeous weather, looking at birds, and reminiscing.

I wanted to share some lovely creations my sister, Paula, made for our Mom and Mother-in-law. Paula has been creative since childhood. I didn’t enter the world of creating until much later in life – at least when it comes to arts and crafts. I wrote songs on my keyboard starting in 5th grade and I still enjoy creating songs, but I didn’t start working with paper until 2010. That’s when I received a Cricut Expression from my husband for my birthday. My sister can draw, paint, crochet, knit, make flower arrangements, design, sketch, cross-stitch, sew (clothes, curtains, pillows, etc.), and you get the point! 😉 She’s very talented in all mediums and I like to think my cardmaking came from her inspiring work throughout our life together!

Paula and her husband visited us for her birthday recently and we spent a wonderful day at Michael’s picking out items for Mother’s Day. My mother had mentioned that she wanted to get an orchid for the formal living room. I mentioned this to Paula at the Michael’s store and we found life-like orchids in a gorgeous purple hue and a fitting ceramic pot. I was leaning on my sister to make this a beautiful arrangement and she succeeded! She even removed the taped up leaves to separate them for a more realistic look. I can’t believe it’s artificial and Mom can display this for many years to come!

Purple Orchids Arrangement - artificial

Close Up - Orchids

Paula also made a silk hydrangea wreath as a gift from her to Mom. Our Mom loves hydrangeas and has a blue hydrangea bush in her yard and so did our Grandmother (my Mom’s mother) who has since passed away. Paula found some beautiful hydrangeas in soft blue and cream and added smaller cream and light blue flowers for interest. She found a nice wreath base, some lovely textured ribbon for the bow, and added three butterflies for the finishing touch. This is my favorite wreath Paula has made – it symbolizes the lovely women in our family and continues the tradition of our shared love for hydrangeas.

Hydrangea Wreath

Close Up

Close Up View

And last but not least, here is a bird cage flower arrangement Paula made for her mother-in-law. I love the various shades of pink! Isn’t the bird cage a nice find at Michael’s? It’s so pretty and the butterflies are the perfect complement! I’m amazed that Paula was able to complete all three gifts in one evening. She made it look so effortless!

Bird Cage Flower Arrangement

Bird Cage Arrangement

Close Up

Thank you Paula for making Mother’s Day so special for our family!

Love you sis!

Vanessa

Many Thanks to “The High Note” – Giveaway Goodies

Darilyn is the creator of The High Note blog and a talented crafter of beautiful creations using vintage sheet music. She recently celebrated her one year blogiversary and over 100 followers! For this special occasion, she offered a give-away of goodies she’s made over the past year on The High Note such as:

  • Shredded Antique Sheet Music
  • Custom Note Cards
  • a Music Wrapped Candle

I was the lucky winner of these awesome goodies and received a bonus set of heart and flower die-cuts! Darilyn has been so gracious in letting me share with you what I received.

Darilyn's Vintage Sheet Music Creations

Darilyn's Vintage Sheet Music Creations

Shredded Vintage Sheet Music

Mom Note Card

Heart and Flower Die-Cuts

I look forward to using the shredded paper in my 3-D projects from the Tags, Bags, Boxes, and More 2 (TBBM2) cartridge and the die-cuts for my cards! The lovely candle will be displayed on my piano, and the Mom Note Card will be given to my sweet Mother who also plays the piano! Thank you so much Darilyn for these wonderful items! I love how your creations were carefully packaged! It was so much fun opening the box and looking at each beautiful piece!

Darilyn sells her creations on Etsy at http://www.etsy.com/shop/TheHighnotedotnet.

Southern Cricut Lady is on Facebook!

PicMonkey Collage Spring

I finally took the time to upload 100 photos of my paper creations to my Southern Cricut Lady Facebook page. If you’re on Facebook and would like to check out the album, here’s the link: https://www.facebook.com/SouthernCricutLady. Then just click on photos. I’m still working out the kinks and learning my way around. 🙂 Many thanks to the 9 lovely people who have clicked “Like” :). I appreciate your support so much! And Arin thanks again for the PicMonkey link to make my Facebook collages! I love the cool effects this website offers!

Thank you!

Vanessa

Have You Ever Wanted to Design Your Own Stamp Line?

I did some rigorous research recently on creating your own line of stamps. It was frustrating, and admittedly, angered me a bit. I finally had a break through on Google when I (in my best estimation) entered the right word combo or maybe the perfect key words. Who knows, but at least I found a result.

This curiosity all began when I started seeing some of my favorite crafting blogs getting their own stamps made. They sell their own line of stamps on their blogs through PayPal. I don’t think I’m ready for that kind of venture but I thought it would be nice to know for the future – in case my little craftiness took me there down the road.

So the Googling began and I couldn’t find any hints on my personally favored craft blogs on how they got started or who manufactured their stamps. So I gave up on Googling their blog names combined with stamp manufacturing key words and just started looking for stamp manufacturers. Most of the results took me to office supply stores for custom rubber stamps for addresses or monograms. That’s not what I need. I’m talking about 4×6 sheets of clear stamps. So I searched on clear stamp manufacturers and I hit the jackpot. The manufacturer that I found says exactly what I was looking for on their stamps page: “Interested in developing a clear stamp product line? Give us a call – don’t go to market with anything less than Superior ClearTM”. So if you’re interested in your own line of stamps, check out Stewart Superior. Or keep this tidbit in your back pocket for future use.

Once I had the manufacturing name, I Googled for stamp sellers that actually use them and I only found two sites that were kind enough to share their crafty secrets regarding their stamps: “My Time Made Easy” and “My Sentiments Exactly”. Here are the links to their statements about using Stewart Superior:

  • http://mytimemadeeasy.com/about.html Excerpt: I am so proud to announce that we went to the BEST for producing our images-Stewart Superior! I invite you to read about them. They have been a dream to work with the last couple months. This company is used by all the top companies, and now we are part of that lineup! You can have the best quality images for an affordable price! Our images are ready to use! They are packaged on 4 X 6 acrylic sheets, with the images/stamp set name printed onto the acetate sheets you store them on.
  • http://mysentimentsexactlywoodmountp19.blogspot.com/2012/09/my-sentiments-exactly-wood-mounted.html Excerpt: Mse stamps line uses only superior clear photopolymer by stewart superior. This reactant liquid compound is hardened into a stamp through exposure to uv light. The great advantages of superior clear is that the stamp is formed in the size and shape of the image so you will never need to spend extra time cutting or pulling apart each image. There will be no over stamping from excess plastic around the image.

Stewart Superior talks about their customer list on their site: “We used to list out all the companies using Superior Clear.  However, we found that it became a prospecting list for our competitors.  Therefore, we will just say that many of the best companies offering the best designs on the best quality photopolymer – are our customers. Give us a try… you won’t be disappointed.”

In some more digging, I found a message board that says Papertrey Ink (PTI) uses Stewart Superior for their stamps but this was posted by an anonymous user of the site so this can not be confirmed and I’m sure PTI won’t disclose either! 🙂

Please feel free to share with your crafty friends in case they want to start their own line. If this was helpful, please leave a comment. I know there are other crafters out there that have wondered the same as me on how these stamp lines evolved, especially from crafting blogs-turned-entrepreneurs.

~Vanessa

I’m a Winner ~ 30 Days of Holiday Giveaways

Hello all! Sorry for the long hiatus. It seems this always happens after Christmas until I feel refreshed again! My husband got me some awesome crafting items for Christmas, including a new Cricut cartridge – Tags, Bags, Boxes, and More 2 (TBBM2)! Here is a pumpkin gift bag I made. I haven’t embellished it yet but thought I would show how it looks after cutting and assembling.

Pumpkin Bag - TBBM2

I plan on making the tea cup next. Hubby also bought me the scoring tip and my lovely sister and brother-in-law gave me the Cricut gel pens for my birthday to print the card phrases from TBBM2! They also got me a nice selection of stamps, Martha Stewart punches, and paper!!! I feel a bit spoiled! I can’t wait to dig into these items and start crafting again!

On top of this, I won a giveaway through Northridge Publishing’s “30 Days of Holiday Giveaways”. The box of goodies came a week after Christmas! I had never one a prize before so this is quite exciting! Northridge Publishing banded together with Provo Craft to create Cricut Magazine. I became a follower of Northridge Publishing’s Create blog a few months ago because they have card challenges and giveaways throughout the year. During December, they hosted their 30 Days of Holiday Giveaways where you can enter each day’s giveaway by leaving a comment. This particular prize package was hosted by American Crafts and included paper and embellishments from their different lines: Dear Lizzy ‘5th & Frolic’ (my favorite), Pebbles ‘Seen & Noted’, Crate Paper ‘On Trend’, Studio Calico ‘Darling Dear’, and a few embellishments from ‘Yearbook’. Here are pictures of the goodies that arrived. The items were separated by their design lines in 4 big “zip loc” bags.

Box of American Crafts goodies

4 bags of goodies

Dear Lizzy Line

On Trend Line

Studio Calico Line

Pebbles Line

Even though the 30 Days of Holiday Giveaways is over, there are still other giveaways they host each week. And with their new monthly Cards Blog Challenge, there are more opportunities to win some lovely scrapbooking and card supplies! I am not a paid endorser of their site, just a fan 🙂 and I just wanted to share this with others so you too can win. It would be exciting to hear of blog followers winning their own goodies and seeing what you make! If you want to follow the Create blog, here’s their address: http://create.northridgepublishing.com/.

Hope you all had a lovely Christmas holiday and a wonderful New Year so far!!!

Vanessa

2012 in review

The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2012 annual report for this blog.

Here’s an excerpt:

4,329 films were submitted to the 2012 Cannes Film Festival. This blog had 55,000 views in 2012. If each view were a film, this blog would power 13 Film Festivals

Click here to see the complete report.

Not quite ambidextrous but…

So I’ve had a revelation about myself.  Recently, I noticed myself cutting vegetables with a butcher knife and it was my right hand wielding the blade. Please don’t ask why it took so long to realize this after the many years I’ve been cooking! For most people, using a knife with a right hand is not strange at all since a lot of people are right-handed. Well, I’m left-handed. It’s true that I’ve known for a long time that I use scissors with my right hand; but, I never put much thought into what other things I did with my right versus my left until the “butcher knife awareness event”. So I started thinking back on all the activities I’ve ever done and have concluded that I do more everyday things with my right hand than my left, but yet I’m considered left-handed because of two primary activities: eating and writing.

I feel a chart is needed to explain my unusual quirkiness concerning my choice of hands so please refer to the one below. When I looked this list over, I first thought that all things done with precision are done with my left hand, but what makes this statement untrue is the fact that I only use scissors with my right hand. I can’t cut paper at all with my left. And in sports, precision is just as important and I use my right hand for all things sports-related. It looks like precision-related items fill both columns.

According to Merriam-Webster’s definition of ambidextrous (http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/ambidextrous), you have to be able to use both hands with equal ease. Well, that’s a little ambiguous to me. Does this mean I have to be able to cut with scissors using both hands at the same level of skill? Or does it mean using hands interchangeably but for different tasks? So if I’m not ambidextrous, then what am I? For now, clueless and curious…

If by some chance, I ever broke my left hand, I at least can write with my right hand in a passable manner. I used to practice when I was younger because of my earlier obsession with this hand issue. It’s not an obsession anymore, but rather a quirkiness that makes me “me” and that’s alright.

An Answered Prayer

It’s been a month since my last post but yet it seems like yesterday we heard the news that my father needed open heart surgery. He had a heart catheterization done in mid-January and by early February he was scheduled for surgery to replace his aortic heart valve. After consulting with his surgeon, Dad also learned he needed to have a by-pass done to improve blood flow to his heart. Knowing the seriousness of this type of surgery, Dad chose to have it completed at Tampa General. We stayed with my sister and brother-in-law and were able to commute to the hospital each day while Dad recovered. The surgery was successful and with relief and gratitude I can report that he is recovering and doing very well.

It’s times like these that show the power of family and the love and support they have for each other. Prayers were answered and blessings were bestowed. I spent a lot of time thinking of family memories and praying that we would be able to have more. It really puts living each day to the fullest in the forefront of one’s mind. I thank God for answering my prayer for Dad’s successful recovery and allowing us more time to spend with him and Mom. I also thank our supportive extended families and my sister’s husband and my husband for their loving support during this difficult time. It’s getting better and Dad’s improving each day. His doctor said that before the surgery he was on the edge of a cliff and it was a matter of time before he went over. And now, with the replacement valve and by-pass, he has gained another 25 years! With heartfelt appreciation I thank Dr. Sheffield, the gifted cardiac surgeon, and the wonderful staff at Tampa General who treated my father with caring hands.

Blessings to you and your families.

~Vanessa

Liebster Blog Award

Now that I have gotten my Christmas shopping and card making completed, I can finally acknowledge with heartfelt appreciation the Liebster Award granted to me by one of my most favorite bloggers and followers, The Island Traveler at “This Man’s Journey”. Thank you so much Island Traveler for bestowing this honor.

Liebster is German for beloved or dearest. The Liebster Award is granted to a blogger who has less than 200 followers but the awarded blog stands out to the grantor as being valued and appreciated. To fully acknowledge the award, the recipient then passes it on to five of their favorite inspirational bloggers who deserve recognition. This is a wonderful way to spread the love and share in this gift of appreciation, especially at Christmas!

Liebster Award Rules:

  • Thank the blogger who awarded you and link back to their blog.
  • Post the award on your blog.
  • List 5 other bloggers you want to recognize.
  • Inform your top 5 by leaving a comment on their blog.

The Liebster Award goes to…

Sophia at “Just 4 Crafters” ~ Sophia is my favorite blog follower and fellow crafter. She has beautiful crafts and cards on her site and has a caring heart. She offers techniques and detailed instructions so that anyone at any skill level can complete a beautiful craft with ease. I find much inspiration from her blog and her website. She is also a wonderful blog friend and I am happy to have met her in the blogosphere.

Helen at “Helen’s Journal” ~ Helen is a photographer and shares her extraordinary photos on her blog. She provides inspirational quotes for her photographs that serve as unique captions. The combined presentation helps the reader see the point of view from the photographer. She has a wonderful “eye” for images and scenery and has taught me that “less” means so much “more”.

Scarlett at “Blue, Purple, & Scarlett” ~ When I think of Scarlett, I think “Talented Artist”. I found her blog by visiting Sophia’s site. Scarlett shares crafts, drawings, paintings, Christmas crafts such as hot air balloon ornaments and jarred winter scenes with powdered sugar, and so much more. If you want to be inspired, you should check out her blog. I am always in awe when I see her handmade cards using her own drawings.

Lindsey at “La Georgia Paperie” ~ Lindsey’s blog is one of the first crafting blogs I followed when I first started my blog in February of this year. This is also when I delved into my love of cardmaking. Lindsey’s blog was so helpful to me because I learned of cardmaking tools that have proven to be invaluable for this hobby. I also gained inspiration from seeing her lovely creations. Lindsey has had a new arrival, the birth of her first child – a beautiful baby boy, and readers can follow along at her other blog “The Accidental Wallflower“.

Lindsay at “Craftymonster81” ~ Lindsay makes beautiful, detailed cards using PanPastels (painting with pure artist pigments). All of her designs are intricate and you can see the amount of time each labor of love involves. Truly inspirational creations. I also enjoy seeing her card designs such as easel and pop out cards. Lindsay provides step by step tutorials to her readers so that they too can try these unique cards.

One Last Thank You

I must share my heartfelt appreciation for the Island Traveler at “This Man’s Journey“. If I could award the Liebster Blog Award back to him, I most definitely would. To find a kindred soul in the world today that shares your values and your hopes for a better world is a true blessing. The Island Traveler is a kind and genuine family man. You can hear the love he has for his family in his words and you can feel his kindness to others by his support of fellow bloggers. I have been blessed to be able to follow his personal story and to share in the wonderful photos of his family’s adventures. He has a truly inspirational blog and is most definitely worth a visit!