Wednesday, November 25, 2020


Keeping true to a promise I made to myself when our granddaughter was born, this is the Thanksgiving card I made and sent to her this year. Now that she is 3, she enjoys interactive cards, and I of course enjoy making them for her! 

Here's a quick video to show the fun pop up surprise that I put into her Thanksgiving card.

The body of the pop up turkey is actually a rubber band activated hexagonal "ball" created with Karen Burniston's "Surprise Ball Pop Up" die.
I have to admit that when Karen Burniston first released this hexagonal pop up ball die a year ago, I really didn't think I would be buying it. But within a few weeks of its release, creative Karen Burniston fans and crafters began creating and sharing  the cutest little pop up critters, from unicorns to Baby Yoda and more using this hexagonal ball on Karen Burniston's Facebook fan page. It didn't take too long for me to realize I really NEEDED this die after all!

To create my turkey, I used parts from the turkey in Cuddly Cute Design's "Pilgrim Cuties" and glued them on to the hexagonal ball. The ball was then attached to the card with a brad, which allowed the turkey to turn and swivel inside the card. I glued an extra panel of cardstock to the backside of the finished card to hide the brad.
Then to keep the turkey flat and the card closed, I added a flap to the right side of the card and inserted  thin but strong neodymium magnets  in between the layers of cardstock of the flap and front of the card.

Cutting file for the paper pieced Pilgrim teddy on the front of the card comes from Cuddly Cute Design's "Pilgrim Bears".  She was adhered to an oval panel which was run through the "Three Dots" Sizzix Textured Impressions embossing folder from Birthday Set #2. A double layer of ovals was added behind this to create a frame. "Happy Thanksgiving" greeting was created using Expose font and the print and cut function on the Silhouette.

For the Indian teddy on the inside, I used the same teddy bear from the Cuddly Cute Designs "Pilgrim Bears" cutting file together with the Indian costume and corn from another Cuddly Cute Designs file called "Indian Mouse". I really had fun putting this card together and playing with the hexagonal ball pop up. I'm looking forward to experimenting and trying to create many more fun pop up critters with this ball!

Thanksgiving will be a little different  this year since we'll be limiting our celebration to our bubble of just three of us. Even so, I felt the need to connect with family so I decided to make a batch of Cheetos, Bugles, Fritos snack mix to share with those we'll be missing.

I put the snack mix into recycled  half gallon mayo and nut jars that I had been saving and decorated them very simply with just a band of printed paper and an oval matted label adorned with a cute paper pieced turkey. Slid the bottles into cello bags and added a bow as a final touch to make them look festive. Only had time to make half a dozen of these; really wish I had started earlier so I could have done a second batch.

Before I close, I want to share a couple sweet surprises I received from crafty friends this week...

I got happy mail! This adorable Thanksgiving mini shadowbox created by my sweet friend Bev really helped to brighten my day. Cute little squirrel and coordinating fall themed images were created using the print and cut function on her Silhouette and added to to struts inside and on the front of this fun shadowbox card. So darned cute!

Isn't this Pilgrim's Hat treat box created by my dear crafty pal Lorna the cutest ever?   I love how Lorna made this hat box designed by Snapdragon Snippets extra special by adding  the pretty paper pieced sunflower and polka dot hatband to add a touch of whimsy. "Thankful for You" was sketched onto the flower center by using the pen holder and sketching function on her Cameo... so cool!

Coping with all the changes and precautions needed to keep safe and healthy this year has been a bit stressful at times, but thankfully,  my passion for crafting and keeping in touch with close friends and family has helped a lot. Feeling so thankful and blessed. Happy Thanksgiving, everyone!

Sunday, November 15, 2020

In the Cookie of Life...

I recently made this fun card and matching gift card holder to send to a dear friend for her birthday.

While looking for fresh ideas for a birthday card, I came across this quote by author Salman Rushdie. Being that my friend happens to work part time at a bakery that bakes yummy gourmet cookies (that she sometimes shares with us!), I thought this would make a cute theme for her card.

I started my card by lightly blending distress oxide inks onto white cardstock to create the panel you see in the window. I added a paper pieced teddy from Marjorie Ann Designs' "Me and You Forever" cutting file and cookie jar from Kadoodlebug Designs' "Cutie Katoodles Cookie Jar Bear".

The cookie quote was done with Ballerina and Arial fonts as a print and cut with a label shape from Cricut Lacy Labels cartridge. Cutting file for the chocolate chip cookies were created in Make the Cut design studio, and window and frame were cut on the Silhouette. Digital patterned paper for the inset is from Phantasia Design's Teddy Bear Digital Pack on Etsy.

I adhered the panel with the teddy and cookie jar onto a Karen Burniston Rockin' Rectangle mechanism. Yup, I'm really making good use out of this die!

As the card is opened, the panel with the teddy and the cookie jar pops forward and rocks to the right  to reveal another teddy holding a cookie underneath.

Then, just for fun, I enlarged the cutting file for the cookie jar just enough to fit a gift card. I cut and pieced together two sets; one for the front and one for the back and adhered them together at the edges, leaving a pocket to slide the gift card in. Hope my dear friend enjoyed her birthday card and gift as much as I did putting it together!

Saturday, October 31, 2020

Have a SAFE Halloween!

Here's the card I created to send to our granddaughter for Halloween this year. Can you guess who she chose to dress up as? 
Just like so many little girls her age, she wanted to be Elsa from Disney's Frozen movie. Our daughter sent us a few pre-Halloween sneak peek photos of our granddaugther trying out her new costume, and it was so heartwarming to see the joy in her face as she modeled Elsa's glittery gown. I knew right away that I wanted to make an Elsa Halloween card!

I used a coloring book image of Elsa to render into a cutting file using Make the Cut design program and added a paper pieced jack-o-lantern from Miss Kate's Cuttables placed in front. I used glitter and pearlescent cardstocks flatback rhinestones and Stickles to give Elsa lots of sparkle (because that's what little girls --and me-- love, right?).

I put Elsa behind a clear acetate card front, and used Karen Burniston's Rockin' Rectangle mechanism to animate the card. I attached my sentiments to the front and inside of the acetate panel as a print and cut using Christie ttf and a fancy label cutting file.

As the card is opened, Elsa moves forward and little Olaf appears from behind! 

And finally, I used the back of the card to add our Halloween wishes for our granddaughter. 

I also made a second batch of cookies but with not enough time to spend making anymore treat boxes,  I simply packed them in cute Halloween cello bags tied with satin ribbons and added a fun tag.
My original plan was to make paper pieced tags, but after spending much time creating a cutting file for my design, I realized I would be cutting and piecing 6 layers of cardstock to create each tag. Yikes! I quickly had a change of heart and decided to switch it over to a print and cut file by stacking each of the layers in the correct order on the design screen. I thought printed image on the tags were cute enough, and it was much quicker to put together!

Before I go, I'm excited to share a  couple sweet and spooky cute treat boxes I received from my crafty buddies, Kris and Lorna. Kris put together this adorable Dracula and coffin treat boxes filled with yummy candies and antibacterial gel!

And how about Lorna's amazing Halloween rendition of children storybook characters from"Where the Wild Things Are" for this fun treat box! 

Thank you for stopping by! Please have a SAFE and Happy Halloween!

Friday, October 30, 2020

Halloween Cookie Boxes

These are the " Cat in a Pumpkin" treat boxes I put together for friends and family to share cookies I baked for Halloween this year. 

The original idea for this fun box comes from a very similar box I immediately fell in love with at the Silhouette Design Store designed by"Little Luxuries Loft". I purchased the print and cut file for it from the Silhouette Design Store site, but to my dismay, the file automatically downloaded into my Silhouette Design Studio Library. Normally, this is probably a good thing, but for me, not so much as I have not yet learned even the basics on how to use Silhouette Design Studio. I immediately emailed support, requesting an SVG file instead of a STUDIO file but did not get a response for almost a week.

Meanwhile, with Halloween fast approaching I was getting a little anxious so I decided to do a screen print of  the STUDIO file and imported it into Make the Cut Design program (my safe place) to try and create a similar template. After some trial and error, I finally came up with this paper pieced version. Not as cute as the original, but that's okay because I was able to create a template for a box that was 3 times larger than the original 2 inch tall treat holder, which is a good thing since I needed my box to be large enough to hold my cookies!

I put together a dozen of these cookie boxes; painted the Jack o Lantern face with yellow Stickles for some bling and stamped the back of the box with a "Happy Halloween" stamp from Dandelion Designs as a final touch. 

 I really liked that the shape of these boxes reminded me a lot of the little curvy keepsake boxes which were all the rage a few years ago. This larger size is fun too, and I've been seeing quite a few creative takes on it, which I hope to try soon.

Sunday, October 25, 2020

Game On!

When I first spied the free svg cutting file for a Sony PlayStation game controller created and shared by Jennifer Maker's Craft A Life You Love DIY website, I had to download it right away, knowing I wanted to use it to make a birthday card for my "gamer" son in law. Jennifer Maker has also included an  easy to follow tutorial for a pop up gift card holder to go with her game controller svg cutting file.
For my card, instead of a gift card holder, I chose to showcase the game controller on a Surprise Pop Up Slider card. 

Pulling the tab on the top of the card allows the front panel of the card to slide up like an easel...

... to reveal the message underneath.

Here's a view from the top which shows the pull panel which was done as a print and cut with my Happy Birthday greeting. My original plan was to attach a gift card to the pull panel, but unfortunately I forgot to use foam tape when atttaching the front panel which would have created the needed extra space for the gift card to smoothly slide in and out from the top of the card.

But it's just as well because as I was putting this card together, I was informed by my daughter that the game system my son in law uses is the Nintendo Switch. Honestly, all of this is Greek to me so I googled "Nintendo Switch" it to see what a Nintendo Switch controller looks like.

I'm sure my son in law would have been happy with the old school PlayStation game controller birthday card, but this was a challenge I couldn't resist! Luckily the design of the Nintendo Switch is pretty simple so it wasn't too hard to design a cut file for it. 

I wanted this to be a gift card holder so I designed it so the game controller screen was a pocket with a clear acetate front. I found a Super Mario game backdrop on the internet and personalized it in Print Shop with a Happy Birthday greeting, sized it,  printed it onto glossy photo paper, and adhered it to a piece of folded cardstock just large enough to hold a gift card. Then I added a small tab to the back of the card so it could easily be pulled out of the pocket.

Last thing... everyone wants to open a  present on their birthday, right? So I made a little gift box to put the Nintendo Switch gift card holder in. This turned out to be a fun project... and I learned that not all game systems are the same... !

Sunday, October 18, 2020

Happy "Birdie" Day

While perusing the internet for fresh ideas for "guy cards" I came across some adorable images of golfing mice which provided the much needed inspiration for yet another golf themed card for hubby's birthday this year.
I paper pieced a mouse and a few birds and put them into a card with a large acetate window front together with Karen Burniston's Rockin' Rectangle mechanism to make this fun interactive pop up card.
When the card is opened, the rectangle panel with the golf mouse pops forward and moves to the right to reveal the flagstick and birdies underneath.

To create the golf scene on my card, I put together paper pieced elements from several different cutting files. I used the cute little mouse from Marjorie Ann Designs "Cookies and Milk" set; golf ball and tee are from Little Scraps Of Heaven's "Golf Mouse"; and birdies are from Cuddly Cute Designs' "Cuddly Critter Birds" (now retired).

Golf club image from Pixabay and coloring book images of the flagstick and golf cap were rendered into cutting files in Make the Cut Design program. Just for fun I added a Nike swoosh to the front of the cap, which may have been a mistake because hubby noticed and commented... "Hey, I don't have one like that!" Was that a hint or what?!! 
I used a Die-namics border die for the grass and and added tiny flowers punched from a mini Punch Bunch paper punch.

Here's a view from the top which shows the Rockin' Rectangle mechanism which is really simple to put together to easily animate and make fun interactive cards. I think this is my new "Go To" easy pop up mechanism to to use.

Monday, October 12, 2020

Sending Big Hugs

 No matter how many times I keep telling myself not to buy any more stamps, it seems every year when Mama Elephant announces their Anniversary Sale, I cave in. This year was no different; I just couldn't resist picking up this "Little Girl Agenda" set, especially since these adorable little girls reminded me so much of our granddaughter. When they arrived in the mail, I could hardly wait to ink them up to create my very first Slimline card.

This was my first set of Mama Elephant "Little Agenda" stamps and I was a little surprised at how tiny the images were in real life. At first I thought I'd surely need a magnifying glass to color these, but it actually wasn't too bad. The nice thing is they hardly use any ink at all and color up super quick!

Cutting them out was a little tricky, though... now I understand the reason behind the coordinating dies for these stamps! After cutting, I mounted the little girls onto square panels that I had lightly colored with Tim Holtz distress oxide inks.

Rounded rectangle shapes in Make the Cut design program were used to create the four window Slimline card front, and Arial Black font was used to for the alphas for "hugs". I cut four sets and stacked them to give it some chipboard-like dimension.

And on the inside, a simple message completes my card to accompany a surprise box of goodies sent to our sweet granddaughter.