Today I decided just to make a card front, but since I love interactive cards I added a shaker element to it.
This is definitely a scrap stash project. The paper was in my scrap bin and the snowflakes and baubles were in my embellishment bins.
I used the Ring Accordion die to make the circle cut-out in the patterned paper and then the stitching die that comes in the set to add stitch lines to the transparency window. The ornament top was cut from silver Shimmer Sheetz, rounded and put on with a pop-dot. I tied a piece of ribbon through the top.
After adding decorator trees cut with the Evergreen Pivot Card die to the background behind the window, I went diving into my embellishment bins to find beads and baubles in blues, greens and silvers to fill the shaker. I also added some snowflake buttons.
The Reindeer stamp is one called "Dasher" from Stampin' Up! I stamped it in silver ink onto dark brown cardstock and then embossed with clear powder. Then I went over it with a silver paint pen to add more silver to the piece. I used a craft knife to fussy cut the reindeer, purposely cutting a little jagged in places to maintain a rough cut look. I also roughed up the sides of the paper before gluing onto my white card.
I was inspired by a card by Karen Aicken to use the wreath from the Holiday House die over the reindeer's neck. I cut the wreath from white cardstock with double-sided adhesive on it and then glittered with Soft Green Silk Microfine Glitter. I cut the wreath to weave it around the reindeer's neck so I didn't have to try and get the antlers through it.
ECD supplies are listed below.
Today is the LAST DAY for the 25% Discount on all Silk Microfine Glitter and Elizabeth Craft Designs Double Sided Adhesive using coupon code SPEC25. (Offer ends December 12th)
My apologies for not getting this up last night. We hunted the clues late because Emma had a hair appointment with Tina to get her hair rePixied. (What? It's a word.)
I was at the salon earlier this week getting my hair deGrayed, (What? It's a word.) and Tina and I were talking about Christmas decorations. I am woefully behind getting my tree and decorations up and have only managed to do most, but not all, of a new white/silver mantle decor. I also ordered three gorgeous poinsettias from Emma's band.
Tina is unable to have real poinsettias at home because she has cats. She also mentioned that she hadn't done much to decorate the salon for Christmas. Armed with those two pieces of information, I felt that the perfect Christmas gift for Tina would be either a fake poinsettia plant for home OR a piece of decor for the salon.
I chose to make a little hybrid of those two ideas - using fake silver poinsettias, frosted twigs of white glittered berries and silver balls to decorate a styrofoam tree.
I really haven't made very many trees over the years, so I was a little unsure if it would come together, but in the end I liked it how it turned out, although it did create a huge mess and I burned through about 5 hot glue sticks getting everything on there.
Here's where Tina chose to put the tree in the salon. Looks great there!
Once we got home I quickly hid the clues and the loot, but the light was gone and the photos aren't great. (You'll just have to use your imagination while I bring the scene to life with my words) Heh.
KARL: "First word: 'It was the best of blank. Not down, but blank' With pantomimes!" Huh?
EMMA: I think it must have something to do with that game we were playing the other night.
KARL: It was the best of what? Friends?
ME: Dad is an acceptable reference.
JOHN: It's from A Tale of Two Cities "It was the best of times, it was the worst of times"
EMMA: OK, so that first blank is "times". Not down, but "up".
KARL: Time's up!
The game was sitting on the sofa table, along with Emma's library books, one of the pretty poinsettias, Karl's $5 Explosion Box gift (exchange is today) and some rolled up white paper that I was using as a backdrop for photographing some CHA samples.
Did I mention that the light was fading fast? No time for tidying.
They found the next clue inside the box. This one went so fast that I didn't even get a chance to photograph them reading it.
EMMA: (opening the clue) Oh there's a photo in here. "Are you observant? I couldn't say - " OH! It's that picture in the breakfast room.
She dropped the clue and went straight to the picture.
ME: Hey! That was too fast. Find it again!
She reenacted, ever so naturally, finding the clue atop this little art piece of New Orleans that was given to me by my Barriere Construction coworkers when we moved from New Orleans to Colorado fourteen years ago. I've always loved this little framed piece of New Orleans, but I wasn't sure if the kids ever really noticed it.
Apparently at least Emma has.
JOHN: What just happened?
KARL: I'll tell you what happened. We hadn't even finished READING the clue and Emma ran right over here to this picture and found it.
JOHN: Well what was the second line of the clue?
KARL: "Are you observant about stuff you see each day?" or something like that.
ME: But rhyming, of course.
ME: BUT RHYMING, OF COURSE! My clues always RHYME!
EMMA: "The candy's close, so be astute. You load this, but it doesn't shoot." Hmmm. That's interesting. What's something that you load but doesn't shoot?
KARL: (thinking) The washing machine? The dishwasher?
EMMA: (impressed) Wow! I bet you're right. You check the dishwasher and I'll check the washing machine.
Now it probably should have clued them both in which one was right, since I followed Karl into the kitchen.
The candy is under that colander, but he didn't see it. He closed up the dishwasher.
EMMA: (returning from laundry room) Wasn't in the washing machine. How about the dishwasher?
Uh oh. This presented a problem.
ME: Well a second set of eyes is always good. How about you switch and Karl checks the washing machine and Emma checks the dishwasher?
EMMA: (puzzled) Uh, OK.
Again, I feel that since I stayed put in the kitchen they should have known which place was right, but I don't think they did. Karl went off to the laundry room.
Emma was a much more thorough sleuth. She found the candy.
I had purchased various chocolates from around the world - chocolate twigs, sardines, umbrellas and Kinder Santas.
JOHN: Wait - THOSE were in the dishwasher? How did Karl miss that?
EMMA: I know, right?
KARL: (with dignity) They were hidden under a colander.
We are planning an all-out blitz of decorating on Saturday, so next week's hunt should have more festive backdrops. (Plus new potential hiding spots! Whoot!)
Karl has a $5 gift exchange at school this week and thanks to a candy sale at CVS I was able to stay within budget to make a candy sleigh.
If ever there were a time for an explosion box, right? I cut lightweight chipboard into the panels I would need for a 7" x 4.5" x 4.5" box. The lid is 7.25" x 4.75" x 1". I attached ribbon to the box lid, hiding the ends inside the lid underneath the interior paper panel. The bow is hot glued to the top.
The video will show three different ways to achieve seamless backing cards for Pivot Card dies. You can use these techniques with any of the Pivot Card dies and to prove it, I used three different Pivot Card dies for the video samples.
The first card in the video is the Congratulations card featuring the "full panel" seamless backing card technique.
When I need to make a card quickly I choose patterned paper. It's a great space-filler and there are so many beautiful designs out there. This card uses paper from a 6x6 Teresa Collins Far and Away pack. (Shopping Links below each card)
Since Congratulations cards are often related to some sort of new "journey" - graduation, new job, engagement, promotion, etc. - travel related papers are a great base for Congrats cards.
I had a lovely older script stamp in my stash that read "All journeys have secret destinations of which the traveler is unaware" and fit the theme perfectly.
The decorator dies from the Katie Label Pivot Card do not duplicate the decorator dies in the Katie Label Accordion die set but they are designed to perfectly coordinate. I used the largest solid KLA decorator die plus the KLA stitching die, plus two labels from the KLPC.
Stitching dies are becoming very popular now. Did you know that most of my stitching dies are on their own die so you can use them independently? Notice how I used just the stitching die to add interest to the bottom portion of the card. On one side I added the Congrats peel-off sticker and on the other side I will write my personal message.
You can find these items at your local independent craft stores or by following these shopping links:
The next card in the video is the Evergreen Pivot Card, using the "outside border" seamless backing card technique.
This card, once again, relies heavily on the patterned paper. I simply die cut the decorator trees from the patterned paper, inked the edges with brown ink, then pounced them with Versamark Ink and embossed with Ultra Thick Embossing Enamel. A bit of twine on the trunks and my decorator trees were done.
I also used some glitter lines for sparkle and a Season's Greetings peel-off sticker. This card would be easy to reproduce in multiples and would work with many different patterned papers.
You can find these items at your local independent craft stores or by following these shopping links:
I used the grass border die from the Outdoor Edges to add grass pieces to the pop-up. I've also been getting a lot of use out of my Modeling Paste/Embossing Folder backgrounds, in this case, to make a picture frame for the Home Sweet Home greeting. I stamped a "Home Sweet Texas" stamp by Deadbeat Designs twice and cut out the words to reconstruct a Home Sweet Home greeting.
You can find these items at your local independent craft stores or by following these shopping links:
So there you have it! Three techniques for making seamless backing cards for Pivot Cards. Which is your favorite technique?
By the way, I always love to see what you create from my videos so feel free to send me an e-mail (link in the sidebar) or a private message on the Facebook Page with a photo and/or link to your creations.
Are you following along with Shelly Hickox's 12 Days of Ornaments? She is posting a new ornament tutorial every day for the first 12 days of December.
Her Day 2 Ornament featured Poppy the Owl looking extremely cute as a stitched/stuffed ornament.
I also fell in love with her Day 3 Ornament featuring a faux galvanized metal Noel ornament made with letter dies. I really wanted to give that technique a try, so I created a triple evergreen tree ornament using the decorator dies from the Evergreen Pivot Card die.
I followed Shelly's instructions, with the exception of the sides, which I painted with a silver leafing pen and then Viva Ferro Special Effect Paste in black. The emboss feature is built-in to the dies themselves and since I had used thick foil-covered cardstock with ECD Double-Sided Adhesive on the back, the pressure from cutting the dies also embossed them.
I used a wire hanger instead of jute. To give it the spiral effect I wrapped it around a pencil and then slid it off the end, stretched it into an arch and twisted it onto the wire loops.
Shelly has an excellent supply list and shopping links on her 12 Days of Ornaments Day 3 post for all the paints and foil and chipboard and such. I only added these items:
In case you missed yesterday's post, I explained that my twins *thought* they outgrew this tradition of the Christmas Clues. They voted not to continue and I had to bribe them to do once-a-week clues for sweets this year.
Today was the start and then we'll do the next 3 Wednesdays ending on Christmas Eve.
For the inaugural day I conconcted candy sleighs and then realized that I will have to come up with bigger hiding spots this year. Luckily I'm chaining the clues, though, so mostly I'll be hiding little wax-sealed envelopes.
For all of their nonchalance about the tradition Emma pounced on the clue as soon as she walked in the door.
EMMA: Hey Karl! Let's do the clue!
KARL: Are you reading it?
EMMA: Yeah, but you can read tomorrow's clue.
ME: Ahem? Don't you mean next Wednesday's clue?
EMMA: Oh yeah, right.
EMMA: "Measuring, cutting, sanding - such fuss! It takes stringers and struts, but mostly a ______!" OK, this definitely has something to do with my bridge project.
KARL: Is that missing word supposed to rhyme with "fuss"?
EMMA: Not necessarily.
ME: Hey! Don't my clues always rhyme?
KARL: I wouldn't say they're perfect rhymes, but they do have a lyrical quality to them.
LYRICAL QUALITY?! Chocolate-covered-brussel-sprouts for you next week, kid!
KARL: I guess it has to be somewhere around this bridge -
EMMA: Yaughergh! (or something like that) Be careful!!!!!
Emma's Physics group slaved over those trusses all day on Sunday. The books were on top to keep them from warping while the glue was drying. They plan to complete construction tomorrow.
After carefully extracting the clue from under a book it was Karl's turn to read.
KARL: "My first is a dozen, then seven times three, next three, then a quarter, what can it be?" OK, so the numbers are 12, 21, 3 and 0.25.
ME: Point Two Five?
KARL: Yeah, a quarter. If you're being accurate.
They puzzled over this one for quite some time. Emma asked if they could have a secondary hint.
ME: It's a cipher.
They debated what that meant for a while and then Karl had an epiphany.
KARL: Maybe it's an alphabet cipher, Emma. These could be letters of the alphabet.
EMMA: OK, let's check. A-B-C-D-E-F-G-H-I-J-K-L - the first one would be L.
She counted up on her fingers.
EMMA: Second letter U.
KARL: The third one would be C. What's the 25th letter of the alphabet?
EMMA: X. Could it be Lunch?
KARL: Lucx - does it mean Luck?
ME: Are you joking? How many letters are in the alphabet?
EMMA: Oh! The 25th letter would be Y, Karl. It's LUCY!
By the way, while they were puzzling over this clue I had heard Lucy go through the dog door and run around outside for a while. When she came in the clue was no longer on her collar so I had to go search the yard. Emma had followed me out and asked what I was doing.
ME: Never you mind.
I managed to get the clue back onto her collar before the clue was solved. After they figured out the clue Emma said "Oh, NOW I know why you were outside looking for Lucy!"
Karl, the most staunch of the "anti-Christmas Clues gang" certainly changed his tune, huh? He read the third clue.
KARL: "The move from Colorado was long; a two-day drive. We brought lots and lots of items and these are still alive."
I thought this clue might take them a while. I figured they would think it was the dogs, although we only brought one dog from Colorado (Lucy) and acquired one in Texas (Katie). So I was shocked when only a couple of seconds passed.
EMMA: I suppose it must be those plants in the dining room.
To quote The Princess Bride: "Mostly dead is slightly alive"
It is true that these plants have seen more glorious days of long tendrils (coinciding, I believe, with regular water) but they hold on despite my black thumb.
The Oboes section in Emma's band had tee-shirts made. They say "Reed it and weep" with a dolphin with a double-reed as a nose.
I started this tradition back in Colorado where the kids solve a rhyming clue each day from December 1st through Christmas to find prizes. When they were younger it was Dollar Store trinkets. In Texas we changed to money - at least half of the money has to go to charity and I will match the amount on Christmas day. Emma usually donates all of her money. Karl pretty much sticks with half.
The kids are now 16 and Juniors in High School. It's a busy time for them with school and finals and we haven't made it to the end of the clues the last couple of years. On Thanksgiving we discussed whether the tradition would continue and the kids voted . . .
What?! Hazzuh? Did they mispronounce "We love this tradition, darling mother!"?
I asked whether it would be OK to just reduce the number of clues and Karl was sticking firmly to "no" but I swayed Emma with a plan to hunt clues only once a week, with 3-5 chained clues, and they'd be hunting for sweets. (Emma has a serious sweet tooth!)
The answer turned to:
YES! (for Emma)
I guess. (for Karl)
I'LL TAKE IT!
We settled on the 4 Wednesdays in December, hunting after school, so the clues will start tomorrow. At some point I'll figure out how to introduce some origami-folded charity money into the hunt.
In honor of our change to hunting for sugary sweets and snacks, I made this card featuring the Evergreen Pivot Card decorated like frosted cookies:
I am working on a new video, by the way, for how to make seamless backing cards for the Pivot Card dies. Expect that to go up by the end of the week.
For this card I used green cardstock as the Evergreen Pivot Card base and then cut the pivot card again into silver foil. I trimmed out just the pivoting trees section from the foil and attached it to the green one to look like a cookie sheet underneath the cookies.
Modeling paste made excellent frosting. I tinted my four colors using acrylic paint and used a popsicle stick as a frosting spreader. For the little lines and dots I put the modeling paste into a plastic baggie, snipped a hole in the corner and squeezed it out, decorator style.
Decorating cookies is not a special skill of mine. These fake cookies look pretty much the same as real ones when I'm in charge of the frosting. Notice the splotchy uneven blobs on tree #2 - I thought about fixing them, but then thought - nope! These look like "real" cookies in how imperfect they are.
I found a small little wooden spatula in my stash. I have no idea where it came from, but it worked perfectly on the card.
I knew I wanted the title to be "Have a Sweet Christmas" but I didn't have any stamps with that greeting so I made the greeting on the computer, printed it onto white cardstock and then die cut with a label from the Fancy Accordion set. The Holly Border die was cut from the same "cookie colored" cardstock and then the holly leaves "frosted" to match the cookies.
This side view will show how I layered a couple die cuts together to make them thicker and more cookie-like. I added Double-Sided Adhesive behind the cardstock before die cutting the decorator trees, making them easy to attach to each other and to the cookie sheet.
Want to make your own cookie card? You can find these products at your local independent craft stores or by following these shopping links.
Have you seen the new Tags & More dies by Els for Elizabeth Craft Designs? They are so fun - they cut just the top of the tag and you can make the height as tall as you want. They also include fun overlay dies that will cut a decorative knock-out into the tag.
Because they only cut the top of the tag it's very easy to make a tag-shaped card, as I did here.
Then, simply cut the Evergreen Pivot Card die into the card in the usual fashion. You'll have a tag-shaped Pivot Card. Fun!
For my card I cut the decorator tree dies from the Evergreen Pivot Card out of white cardstock that had ECD Double Sided Adhesive on it. Then I peeled up the liner to make them into sticky trees and covered them with various sized hearts. I used the heart dies from the Spiral Circle Pull Card, Oval Accordion and Poppy the Owl dies.
I cut all the hearts out of one of my Modeling Paste Embossed Backgrounds and then inked some of them green. After covering each sticky tree with hearts I dumped Warm Diamond Silk Microfine Glitter over each tree to use up the rest of the sticky. (The trunks were done in Antique Gold glitter)
To finish out the card I used the Outdoor Edges along the bottom and added twine bows to the top of each tree. The greeting is stamped on a decorator label from the Katie Label Pivot Card die.
These products are available in independent craft stores worldwide, or here are shopping links:
Happy Thanksgiving! We had a nice low key holiday with just the four of us, and after our feast, games and pumpkin pie it was time for everyone to scatter to do whatever they wanted for a while.
I chose to finish the editing of my panda video and get it uploaded.
I'm going to be making more YouTube videos next year since I am reducing my travel schedule to be able to focus on the kids as they finish high school and prepare for college.
This week I got the wild hair to see what modeling paste in an embossing folder would do and ended up loving the results so much that I filmed my process in case you want to try it.
Here's a close-up of what the "Pass 1" background loks like - lots of fun dimension and ridges.
Now I know that I normally make interactive cards and even John immediately opened them to see what was inside.
ME: They're not pop-ups.
JOHN: Yeah, the inside is pretty boring.
Sheesh. Tough crowd!
I've also been messing around with Character Transformations. Scroll down or click here to see Dutch the Fox and Honey the Bear styled as woodland animals. You'll also see Hoppy the Frog dancing interpretively.
I didn't want to leave out Chilly and Poppy, so here are two cards using the Pass 2 and Pass 3 backgrounds and different stylings to the remaining Characters.
For the Chilly card I used the Outdoor Edges to make a curvy banner for the top with the ECD Merry Christmas die. Then I used the Outdoor Edges again across the bottom with a tree from the Evergreen Pivot Card and then my altered Chilly the Penguin. All I changed were his beak and eyes. I used the pupils for the eyes and layered the beak shadow layer with the beak die. A white gel pen for the catch lights and a light pink marker for the cheeks finished off Chilly's transformation.
Next I used a Pass 3 background for this woodsy owl card. Poppy the Owl perches on the All Seasons Tree, which makes a great branch for the Characters. The heart is from the Spiral Circle Pull Card die.
For Poppy it didn't make sense to use just the pupils for the eyes - owls have big eyes! Instead I used the Shadow Layer, the positive lines to define his wings, the positive feather pieces, and the eyes, beak and feet. His features can be scrunched together a little closer when you eliminate the detail layer like this, so it gives him a different look.
Want to make Honey the Bear into a Panda bear? No problem! You'll just need white and black cardstock and here's a video tutorial:
It's amazing how different the Characters look when you change out their colors, expressions, etc.
Here are some shopping links for the items used in the cards:
Happy Thanksgiving week! Today I'm sharing a video tutorial for how to convert the Katie Label Accordion album from portrait style to landscape style. You'll also see a version of this technique using the Oval Accordion (photos and supply lists are further down in this post).
Start by watching the video:
Here are photos and additional notes about the video project.
For the front, I added the Katie Holly Frame Edges in the same color cardstock as the page for a subtle tone-on-tone embossed look. Since I had a little sliver of white showing along the bottom of the page (from the back of the patterned paper) I chose to align the Frame Edges with the outside edge of the page and just leave a gap in the mitered corners. (click the photo to enlarge to see that closer)
The leaves are felt shapes from Creative Impressions, added with small brown brads.
The video goes over the technique for styling Dutch and Honey as woodland creatures. I love that the Character dies give you so many options.
I used Cream crepe ribbon from Creative Impressions and brushed it with the same colors of ink as my Fox before tying it onto Page 2 in a knot.
Other supplies: Echo Park "This & That Christmas" woodgrain paper, brown mini-brads, white gel pen, light colored woodgrain paper from my scrap bin
Let's talk about doing this Landscape technique with the Oval Accordion. It's just one extra step because the center of the Oval doesn't have a little point like the Katie Label to line up with the pivot point. Instead, just measure to the center of the oval (2.75") and put a little pencil mark to line up with your pivot point.
For my Oval Album I was basing the design around the Funny Bones stamp I wanted to use. Hoppy the Frog is the easiest Character to change his pose by simply chopping off his legs, gluing them to a shadow layer and then trimming around the shadow layer to make a black-shadowed leg. To make a solid torso area just cut two shadow layers - one green, one black. Trim out just the torso area of both. For the green one, cut a little bit smaller so you get the black shadow when you glue them together. Do the same with the head, deciding if you want a black shadow along his chin line (my Frog #2) or whether you want just green along that edge (my Frog #1). Now you've got a bunch of frog parts to assemble into any pose you like!
I also used the hat from the Props 1 die set in one hand and an Agatha Flourish in his other hand to be his ribbon wand.
To elongate Hoppy for his Page 3 dance pose I flipped his torso the other way:
Here are the Supply Links for the Hoppy/Sarcasm album: