Saturday, December 29, 2007

Showing Gratitude

Now that Christmas is over and the presents have been opened, it is time to say "Thanks" to those who made this holiday season special.

When I sat down to make some thank you cards this afternoon, I decided to make them bright and cheery. The days are very gray and dreary here this time of year.  They are short and the weather is usually overcast and rainy so I wanted to make something to remind me of summer sunshine and flowers.

Here is what I came up with:


Equipment used:

  • Sizzlits Bounce alphabet
  • Cuttlebug Asterisks (Flower)
  • Cuttelbug 2x2 sliders
  • Red  and white trim
  • Xyron Sticker maker
  • Sticky Dots Die-Cut Adhesive
  • Card blank - 4 1/4 x 5 1/2
  • Red and Yellow card stock
  • Red decorative paper - solid and print

Thursday, December 6, 2007

General Instructions for Embroidery Patterns

Occasionally, someone will ask me if I have additional instructions for my embroidery patterns.  The short answer is, No.  I rarely stitch a pattern the same way twice and it is even rarer still that I actually write down how I stitched something.

I realize that answer won't fly with most people, so here is the long answer:

There are many possibilities for stitching most of my patterns. After choosing a pattern, you will need to decide how many layers you want to stitch.  After determining the number of layers, you then need to decide how many holes you want to skip for the first layer.  A lower number of skipped holes will fill in less of the area of the shape and a higher number of skipped holes will fill in more of the area of the shape.

For the following example, I skipped 22 holes for the first layer of stitching, 16 holes for the second layer and 10 holes for the third layer.  The pattern is the medium ornament from I did the stitching with DMC silver embroidery floss #5283, Metallic pink embroidery floss (brand unknown) and DMC blue rayon embroidery floss #30798.

For other patterns, you may need to skip more or fewer holes depending on the size of the pattern.

  1. Starting at any hole, bring the needle up from the back of the card to the front (your first "up" stitch).
  2. Count clockwise 22 holes and pass the needle from the front to the back (your first "down" stitch).
  3. Count clockwise ONE hole and stitch up.
  4. Count counter-clockwise 22 holes (this should be the hole right in FRONT of the "up" stitch from step 1) and stitch down.
  5. *Count clockwise one and stitch up.
  6. Count clockwise 22 and stitch down .
  7. Count clockwise one, stitch up.
  8. Count counter-clockwise 22 and stitch down.
  9. Repeat from the * until you have stitched all the way around the pattern.

Your stitching will eventually overlap so that when you are completely finished each hole will have two stitches in it forming a "V."

For subsequent layers, repeat steps 1 through 9, decreasing the number of holes skipped between each stitch for each layer (for example, skip 16 holes for the second layer instead of skipping 22).

Hopefully that all makes sense! Once you get the hang of it, try using the same procedure but skip a different number of holes.

Diamonds, squares and other straight edged shapes are very similar, you just have to make sure that you skip enough holes so that you will not be making two stitches on the same side. For example, if you're stitching a diamond that has 10 holes per side, you should skip at least 11 holes.

Saturday, December 1, 2007

Christmas Ornaments from Old Cards

Do you ever wonder what to do with those old Christmas cards? When I was growing up, my mother taught me how to make ornaments from circles cut from old Christmas cards. It was a great way to keep us busy on rainy winter days.


It takes 20 circles to make an ornament. I recommend using a circle cutter like a Coluzzle template, a Fiskars Circle cutter or a Circle Scissor. If you don't have one, you can download the circle and triangle template from:

You can find complete instructions at:

Monday, November 26, 2007

The Artful Mama

I was chatting with my friend, Susan this evening about her blog.  Wow! she has done some fabulous craft projects!  Check out The Artful Mama to see what she's been up to.

I wish I possessed half her talent and creativity, not to mention her patience!  I have a very difficult time working on projects where I have to wait more than about five minutes for things to dry.

Sunday, November 25, 2007

3-D Decoupage from Dollar Store Cards

One of my favorite things to do for 3-D decoupage is buy packages of cards from the dollar store.  I look for cards with well defined lines so they are easier to cut.  Here are a couple I made this afternoon.



These were made with only three layers.  I usually like to use more layers, but I needed these to fit into an envelope for mailing.

If you've never done 3-D decoupage before, using cards is a great way to start.

Friday, November 16, 2007

Stamping Day

Stamping is something I haven't been doing for very long at all.  Right now, I'm really into heat embossing.  I love anything sparkly or shiny, so the metallic and holographic embossing powders are my favorites.  Here are some cards I finished this evening.


The stamps are from two sets I bought on sale at Michael's after Christmas last year. I used holographic embossing powder on the snowman and the Let it snow card.  You can't see it in the scan, but they really sparkle!

Thursday, November 15, 2007

A Creative Way To Use Flower Punches

A couple years ago I bought a Cornercopia.  It is a device that works with most punches for punching corners.  I played with it a little bit, but I soon lost interest and it found it's place on the bottom shelf and there it has stayed, largely undisturbed until recently.

I was cleaning my craft area last week and stumbled across it again so I started experimenting with various punches.  Here is my latest creation.


This card went together very fast and I'm really pleased with the way it turned out.  I punched the corners of the red foreground paper using my Cornercopia with a one inch flower punch.  After I glued the red foreground onto the green background,  I thought the corners looked rather bare, so I took the punch outs and glued them into the corners of the green background paper.  I really like the way it turned out.

The frame around the reindeer is made from four punched flowers, cut in half.  The two green flowers were punched with a Marvy one and one half inch flower punch and the two red flowers were punched with All Night Media's one inch flower punch.

Other items used:

  • Reindeer stamp (manufacturer unknown)
  • Merry Christmas stamp from Inkadinkadoo's Holiday Expressions stamp set.
  • Stampendous detail silver embossing powder
  • Marvy Embossing Heat Tool.

Saturday, November 10, 2007

More Embroidery Patterns!

I love the look of embroidery on paper, especially when it comes to Christmas cards. After making the red ornament using my Coluzzle template for the shape, I thought it would be fun to come up with some shapes of my own, so I opened up my favorite drawing program and went to work. This is one of the ornaments I came up with.


When I created the pattern, I used extra fine lines and I used gray for the pricking pattern so that it can be printed directly on the cardstock. I used metallic floss for the stitching on the ornament and green rayon floss for the tree branch.

I finished the stitching first and then cut the ornament out. After I cut it out, I thought it looked like it was missing something, so I found a darker purple to mount it on and cut it out leaving a 1/8" border around the ornament.

The top of the ornament is made from a short piece of silver ribbon and the bow is made from 1/8" gold wired edge ribbon.

Thursday, November 8, 2007

General Purpose Cards

I like to keep a small stock of general purpose card on hand so I am always prepared for life's unexpected events.  One day a short time back, I sat down with some paper scraps and made several variations of this card.


It's a quick and fun card that is easy to assemble and is also a great way to use up scraps.

Here is what I used:

  • Coluzzle nested raindrop template
  • Coluzzle nested rectangle template
  • Sizzlits buton die
  • All Night Media flower punch
  • Paper Shapers leaf punch
  • Paper Shapers 1/8" circle punch
  • Thinking of You stamp from All Night Media
  • Blue stamp pad

I cut out the petals for the flower using the smallest size raindrop and glued them onto some yellow background paper.  I cut out around the petals, leaving a 1/8" border.  The center of the flower is a button shape cut from the same paper as the background using the Sizzlits button die.

After assembling the flower I used a black pen to draw stitches around each petal.

The card title was stamped with gray-blue ink on a piece of white card stock. I cut it and the background rectangle with the Coluzzle nested rectangle template.

Tuesday, November 6, 2007

Embroidered Ornament

I started with my Coluzzle shadow shapes ornament template for this card.  After I had the ornament cut out, I decided I wanted to use embroidery on it.  Normally I would do that before cutting the ornament out.


I used DMC metallic silver and 30321 red rayon embroidery floss for the stitching.  I love using rayon floss because it is so shiny.  Unfortunately, that does not show up in the scan.

If I make another one of these, I think I will increase the spacing between the holes and I will definitely do the stitching before cutting out the ornament.

Monday, November 5, 2007

Christmas Cards

OK, I'll admit it.  I am WAY behind on making Christmas cards this year.  I have made a grand total of four.  This is largely due to the fact that after 25 years, I decided it's time to go to college, so I've been a little busy lately.  Fortunately, for my first term, I only took one class and it ended last Wednesday night.  I should be able to find some time now to sit down and make some cards.  Next term is when the fun really begins and I will find out what it's like to go to school part time, work full time and attempt to keep the house and family in order. 

Last Monday, my best friend and I went shopping at Michael's and I found some cute Christmas sayings stamps that I just couldn't resist.  Normally, I'm not much of a stamper, but I do like to use the stamps with sayings on them.

Here is my most recent creation with one of the stamps:


Materials Used:

  • Snowflake iris fold kit
  • The Let it Snow! stamp from the Inkadinkadoo Holiday Expressions stamp set.
  • Blue Pigment Ink
  • Ranger holographic embossing powder
  • Marvy snowflake punch
  • Fiskars Lace corner punch
  • Metallic silver and light blue giftwrap

Friday, November 2, 2007

Home Sweet Home

Our new preacher and his family just arrived from Mexico so I made a welcome card for them. The technique I used is called paper piecing. I based the house on some free clip art I got from PCCrafter.

my cards 001

The flowers were made from punches. You can find instructions for making punch flowers at Go to the Free Projects and patterns section and look for the punch workshop.

Tuesday, October 30, 2007


I got into the holiday spirit and created this pumpkin card using the cut and fold technique. You can get a pattern for it at Go to the Cut and Fold Patterns page to find it.

my cards 001

I used Making Memories double-dipped orange card stock. If you're not familiar with it, it is card stock that is different colors on the front and back. I then put yellow card stock behind the cut out portions to brighten it up.