Thursday, October 30, 2008

Trick or Treat! *updated with recipe*

Happy Halloween! It's our little fur baby all dressed in her costume and ready to go trick or treating. Lol...Poor little doggie...the things she has to go through now that dd is too old for all this fun stuff. Halloween is definitely right up there on my list of fun holidays together with Easter and Valentines Day. Always enjoy making goody bags and treats to share.

Really put my Cricut to work this year to help create all my Halloween surprises. Made these trick or treat bags last night for my niece and her doggy. (First time ever for me to make a treat bag for a DOG!)

I first saw Hello Kitty dressed in her black cat costume on Joy's blog earlier this month and thought it was so cute! At first I thought she had used one of the new Hello Kitty Sizzix dies for her projects, but realized later when I couldn't find it for sale anywhere that it wasn't. And since ProvoCraft's Hello Kitty cartridge still isn't available either, I decided to give it a try on Design Studio. I used the kitty from the Doodlecharms cart together with George for Hello Kitty in her costume and Base Camp for the "Happy Halloween". The flying witch dog on the broom is from Paperpups. "Happy Howl-oween" is Opposites Attract and doggy's name "Shibi" is Mickey Font.
And take a look at these skeleton cookies! Aren't they the cutest? Guess what.... actually they really aren't "cookies"... they're doggie treats! Saw these at a pet store in Ewa Beach last week and couldn't resist getting a few. They look yummy enough for human consumption, yeah. In fact the guy at the pet shop said, "They taste pretty good!" (Did he really eat them?!!!)

Anyway, for people treats, I made these little goodies. I call them "Spooky Fries"... They're pretzels baked and flavored and glazed with butter, sugar and furikake. Thought they would look cute in french fry boxes decorated to look Halloween-y. The fry box is a Design Studio cut which was created and shared by none other than the super talented Jen C. on her blog, Brain Things. Thank you, Jen! Stamped the side of the boxes with a Happy Halloween sentiment and added a Sizzix die cut kitty cut from glossy black cardstock. Tied on ribbons in my favorite Halloween colors for the final touch. Still can't believe I made FORTY of these. I must be crazy. Dh and I took a bunch to share with friends at work and I mailed a few to dd to pass around to friends at school.

And yup, I just had to try making Frankie and Frankette too, after seeing so many versions of them posted everywhere! First saw the video tutorial for Frankie on Dawn's blog, but it wasn't till I saw Cambria's version that I knew I just had to make them too. Cambria made her couple into goodie boxes that she calls a "boxy bag"... part box and part bag, I guess. She shares the instructions for it on her blog... and I was very pleased at how easily it all came together. It's quite a versatile little box, and I'm sure I'll want to try making it again for another occasion.
Wanted to make more, but only had the chance to make one set of these because I was pressed for time. Filled them with candy and sent them off to dd and her bf.
Also decorated some lunch bags to fill with more fun and silly Halloween things I had picked up. Used the ghost from the Paperdolls cartridge and Plantin Schoolbook for the font. Made these for dd, her bf and my niece. Dd and her bf probably think I am crazy for sending them stuff like this, but that's ok, cuz I had so much FUN making them! They both work so hard and often stress with all their studying so if I managed to bring even the tiniest smile to their faces, I'm happy.
Last, but certainly not least, a couple more pics of our little baby Latte in her jack-o-lantern costume, and with her new found friend.

I've had quite a few requests for the recipe for the pretzels (spooky fries) so thought I'd update this post to share the recipe. This was shared by a customer who made these for the girls at the pharmacy dd worked at this summer. The pretzels called for in the recipe are Utz brand Honey Wheat pretzels, sold in barrels at Sam's Club. Apparently these are the latest rage as an alternative to Chex Mix and the pretzels are flying out the door over at Sam's Club...better run on over if you want them!
1 block butter
1/3 cup sugar
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1/2 cup light corn syrup
Heat in a saucepan till thick and bubbly and pour over
2 barrels Honey Wheat pretzels
Toss to coat evenly and sprinkle with
1 jar furikake
Bake for 1 hour at 250 degrees, stirring every 15 minutes.

Saturday, October 25, 2008

A Clear Sentiment

Bought myself a how-to book called "Clearly Cards", full of neat samples of cards and tags made with clear plastic and just had to try one out. Made this card for mil's birthday using transparency plastic. The book actually recommends using a heavier gauge plastic but since I didn't have any I decided to give it a whirl using a sheet of transparency plastic instead. The card turned out a bit flimsy because the plastic wasn't thick enough but I guess the overall look was the same. Had fun layering the different elements on the inside and outside of the card to get a dimmensional effect.

Here's a side view of the card to show the layers.

Can't really tell from the photos but I used glitter cardstock from DCWV to do all the cuts except the butterfly. Sorta liked the way it gave the card a kind of subtle bling.
The flowers, heart and swirly green thing are all Sizzix dies.

This butterfly is definitely one of my favorite
Quickutz Revolution dies. Love the intricate and detailed cuts on this butterfly, which makes it seem so different than any other Quickutz die. Really wish Quickutz would do more like this. I adhered folded squares of a heavier gauge plastic behind its wings to give it the dimensional pop. Edges of the card were inked with black Stazon and rub ons are Heidi from Making Memories.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Everybody Was Kung Fu Fightin' !

It's Panda Po! When I learned that dd's former skating coach was planning to do a Kung Fu Panda theme for her son's first birthday party, I went to the Design Studio forum at hoping to find someone who had done a cut file and was willing to share. Woo Hoo! I was in luck because apparently many little boys want Kung Fu Panda birthday parties too...and an ULTRA talented lady created and shared her cut file for Po! She is Jen C. and she shares her incredible talent on her blog, {Brain Things...} . If you are looking for a cut file for something unusual, chances are you will find it here. You will be totally amazed at all the wonderful things she has created! If while visitng her blog you do decide to download any of her files, please don't forget to leave her a comment thanking her for her generosity and hard work. You can also send Jen special requests for cut files by pm-ing her via the Cricut Message Board.

I used Jen's Panda Po cut file (which cuts a 12" large panda!) to decorate the gift bag, then tried my best to size him down on Design Studio so I could have a matching birthday card to go with it. The cut file uses George and Plantin Schoolbook cartridges. The "Happy Birthday" on the gift bag comes from Paper Pups. The front panel of the birthday card was created by welding rectangles and the shadows for the alphas from the George cart to the downsized panda. I then cut alphas to fit the shadows from red prismatic mylar sticker paper and stuck them on. I used DCWV glitter cardstock (love that paper!) and some green patterned paper for the back panel.

I must admit, I had quite a bit of fun running with this Kung Fu Panda theme. I was asked to do a slideshow for the party, so of course
we had to include music from the movie and I found some stills from the movie online which I added
to the slideshow for some fun.
Also found a Kung Fu Panda meal set from Tupperware to include as part of our gift, and even found this adorable little plush panda at Panda's Kitchen when dh and I were there for dinner one night.

Saturday, October 11, 2008

Happy Anniversary!

Today marks 28 years since the day dh and I exchanged our wedding vows. Wow, time sure flies when you're havin' fun! I am very fortunate because dh is always so supportive of all the crazy crafts and hobbies I get in to. He's the one who pampers me with all the latest pricey crafting
tools and gadgetry... aren't I lucky? I know that dh especially likes cards that move, slide or pop up, so I decided to do this free standing pop up card for my anniversary card to him. Hope he likes it! There are several tutorials on this type of card on the web. Dawn Griffith has a video tutorial here, and here's a another over at Splitcoaststampers.

This is what the card looks like opened up. Really love the cute Mickey and Minnie cut from the Mickey and Friends cartridge! Happy Anniversary comes from the Beyond Birthdays cart, hearts from Plantin Schoolbook, and lovebirds are from Joys of the Season. Circle sentiment is a clear stamp from an Autumn Leaves set and the love you stamp is from Dandelion Designs. Scalloped circle is a Marvy Uchida punch and printed cardstock is from DCWV's Spring Glitter Stack.

Sunday, October 5, 2008

Yakudoshi Card

Here's a card I made for a Yakudoshi celebration we were recently invited to. Really struggled with this one! Cards for guys are always tough for me. Knew from the start that it couldn't be pink and frilly or too cutsey...and knew I wanted to do something with an Asian flavor.

Since nearly all the cuts on my Cricut are cutesy or girly, and I really didn't have the time to spend designing on DS, I had to resort to my rubber stamps. Busted out my old box of Asian stamps and used a bamboo stamp from Good Stamps Stamp Goods and a dragonfly stamp from Magenta.
The front and inside gold panels of this Joy fold card were embossed using Cuttlebug's new Friends Forever folder.

Cut out one of the stamped dragonflies and topped it with a few layers of Diamond Glaze to use as an embellishment to keep the card closed. Inside sentiment panel was edged with a Krylon gold leafing pen and all other panels were finished with Tim Holtz Walnut distress ink.