Tag Archives: Paper Crafts

Red, White, and Blue

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In the U.S.A., Memorial Day is today, June 14 is Flag Day, and July 4 is Independence Day, so you can’t go wrong with a bit of patriotic decor this time of year. Here is my restyled Shantilly frame, a free art print on a hand-quilted table runner my daughter-in-law Tiffany gave me for my birthday, the 1776 pillow I made last summer, and a pinwheel bouquet (also a free printable!). Happy summer! ♥

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Peeps Garland!

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I recently hung the Peeps garland I made last spring (out of felt, not the candy!). Here are the super-simple directions:

(1) Draw a simple bunny shape or find a free template online.

(2) Make the bunnies from felt, fabric scraps, construction paper, or scrapbook paper.

(3) Add the eye and nose dots with fabric paint, permanent marker, or embroidered French knots.

(4) Attach the bunnies to ric-rac, ribbon, rope, string, or twine using glue or hand or machine stitching.

You’ll soon have a cheery pop of color for your spring décor. Have fun! ♥

February!

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My Shantilly frame got a makeover for February! The inspiration was this fun suit-on-a-hangar bookmark from my BFF Susan, and the words are letters snipped from alphabet fabric glued onto rectangles cut from last year’s February calendar paper. Here are the ones for November, December, and January. Happy new month! ♥ February

Let It Snow!

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In autumn I bought a fun chicken-wire frame at a craft show from Shantilly, and since then I’ve had fun restyling it for different holidays and seasons.  November’s design reminded us to give thanks, December’s spoke of joy, and January’s is all about snow . . . a clip-art mitten illustration mounted on scrapbook paper, letters snipped from alphabet fabric, and tiny clothespins to hold everything in place. ♥

January_letitsnow

J-O-Y

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Besides my felt peppermint wreath, another favorite decoration at our home is this set of decoupaged J-O-Y letters . . . I made them from upcycled Christmas cards! Click here for complete instructions as well as links to lots of other fun, crafty Christmas projects. ♥

j-o-y

Sleepover!

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Did you love sleepovers when you were a little girl? They were my favorite! Last weekend some fun girls in my family drove in for a “Crafty Cousins Slumber Party.”  We went out to eat, chatted, crafted, slept, ate breakfast casserole and cinnamon roll-ups, went to a big craft show (where my lovely daughter-in-law Shannon launched Shantilly!), and ended with lunch out with my dad. We made fabric flower brooches, Christmas cards (thanks Margo!) and earrings (thanks Karen!). If you heard laughter floating through the air Saturday night, now you know why. ♥

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“Runs With . . . Scissors”

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I found a cute brown and pink “saying” t-shirt for $1 at the crafter’s sale and just had to buy it to make into a pillow for a fun-loving scrapbooker I know! One of my handmade flowers covers up a small bleach spot on the fabric and adds a bit of a-la-mode. Easy peasy! ♥

Scrapbooking Pillow

Craft Day!

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Saturday I had a fun craft day with three lovely ladies . . . my daughter-in-law Shannon, her mom Debbie, and her friend Lori. First we went to a “crafter’s sale” where very friendly people sold their gently used or leftover craft books, supplies, and tools for REALLY REALLY low prices. I came home with a delightful bag of goodies! Then Debbie taught us to make these fun ornaments . . . perfect for decorating packages or hanging on a Christmas tree. Click here for a detailed how-to video and here for a shorter version.  As someone who has never scrapbooked before, I had a LOT to learn about terminology and how to use the equipment and tools, so I appreciated my very patient teacher. We all love our finished projects . . . thank you, Debbie! ♥

Ornaments

The Green Crafts Lifestyle (and their special promotion starting this Friday . . . and a new call for submissions!)

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Book CoverIn June, I wrote in this post about our crafty upcycling friend Mahe (aka MZ) that included a call for submissions for her new upcycled craft book. The Green Crafts Lifestyle is now out, and it’s amazing! It includes sections on paper, plastic, wood, metal, and fabric and has projects from 20 artists around the world, including four of my bloggy friends:

Along with 35 projects detailed on nearly 200 pages of photographs and step-by-step directions, you’ll find author bios and photos with links to their blogs, websites, and other online contacts.

Now for the promotion! To provide all crafters with a chance to learn from these techniques, Mahe’s Altered Upcycling business will provide unlimited FREE Kindle copies of The Green Crafts Lifestyle this Friday, August 16 through Sunday, August 18! Kindle doesn’t restrict you to its device; you can read the book on any PC machine or tablet with the free Kindle App. Simply click HERE for your free copy.

AND . . . drum roll . . . MZ is looking for MORE submissions from MORE of you! In her words: “We need talented artists, crafters, and upcyclists to provide projects and tutorials based on upcycling and green crafting. Altered Upcycling will take submissions for Part 2 of “The Green Crafts Lifestyle” series, and the project submission deadline is August 31, 2013. Please make sure you send tutorials that upcycle wood, plastic, paper, glass, or fabric. The tutorials must be in MS Word format with the pictures embedded in the doc file. I will also need a photo of you as well as an artist bio and links to your blogs, Etsy shops, etc. Please email tutorials to thecraftycan@gmail.com. Let’s save the world one craft project at a time!”

Thank you, Mahe! ♥  P.S. If you haven’t entered my “Catch-up Giveaway,” please click HERE!  

Retro Oven Cupcake Box Party Favors

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CupcakesHow cute are THESE???

They were SO much fun to make, and they’ll be even more fun to give away as gifts . . . with a cupcake or muffin tucked inside!

I first saw them on Pinterest, which led to the amazing Amy Powers’ Inspire Co. blog, which led to the Etsy shop of Claudine Hellmuth.

The downloadable kit includes all five oven colors, a removable cupcake tray, cupcake flags (on which you can type your OWN message!), and adorable oven mitt gift tags.

You can read about Claudine here . . . what an IMPRESSIVE resume! And check out her other fun downloadable kits, too!

I invite you to click on Claudine’s shop from this post or anytime from my Shop Love! page above. Thank you for the lovely find, Amy and Claudine! ♥

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The Upcyling Queen Returns!

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Adventures.Mixed.Media.CoverIn the past, I’ve shared reviews of two of Mahe Zehra Husain’s fabulous upcycling books, The Ultimate Guide to Upcycling and Make a Card Awesome. So, when she asked if she could send a preview copy of her newest publication, I was more than happy to agree! This one is called Adventures in Mixed Media: A Step-by-Step Guide to Creating Beautiful Pieces of Art. It includes chapters on:

  • Materials (Paper, Coloring Mediums, Found Items, and Art Stores)
  • Techniques (Making Mixed Media Art Paper and Making Mixed Media Collage Paper)
  • Projects (A House Journal, Altered Art Organizer, Paintbrush Book, Mixed Media Canvas, The Earth Without Art, Idea Journal, Mixed Media Memories, Art Around your Neck, . . . And Now ‘Round your Wrist, Birds, My Imaginary Flight, and Believe)

I love the way Mahe describes how she organizes her craft room to store “found” items, and the sections on “7 Unusual Sources of Paper” and “Let’s Go On a Treasure Hunt” had my creative juices flowing! Mahe includes YouTube videos for each of her techniques, as well as complete written directions and photographs of all papers and projects. You’ll love Mahe’s friendly, conversational writing style, too! You can get your copy by clicking here at Amazon.com or any time from my Shop Love! page above.

Oh, and remember that Mahe’s first book is ALWAYS available for FREE at her web site, Altered Upcycling. Thank you for all you do to care for Earth as you create, Mahe! ♥

Two Purple Couches

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GiveawayThank you to Emily of Two Purple Couches for the fun gift I received in her recent first blogiversary giveaway!

Look at this cute handmade owl!

And pretty DIY Washi-tape notebook!

And hand-punched glittery confetti!

If you haven’t already made Emily’s acquaintance, you MUST check out her fun home DIYs, starting with a house tour.  (Yes, she really DOES have two purple couches!)

Some of my other favorite posts are Create Your Own Container Garden, A Welcoming Bouquet, and Placemat Project.

Congratulations on your first year of blogging, Emily . . . and thank you for all the fun and creativity you share! ♥

Birthday Banner!

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SideThe main occasion for our big family gathering over Father’s Day weekend is my husband Dave’s *milestone* birthday. Since Dave has been a teacher, principal, and Superintendent of Schools throughout his career, we’re using a school theme for the party.

The Book Page Banner designed by Lauren of The Thinking Closet (one of the sweetest, most talented bloggers I know!) sparked the idea of using bunting shapes and book-page letters for the birthday banner. My version included:

  • measuring, drawing, and cutting the shapes from black cardstock with a ruler, pencil, and scissors,
  • adding an inch at the top of the 5″ x 7″ size and folding it over to give a little extra strength to the punched holes and help the letters stand out from the wall,
  • Googling “printable alphabet template” for the letter patterns, tracing and cutting them out from an old book I save for just this purpose, and using a glue stick to attach them to the cardstock, and
  • threading baker’s twine through the holes for hanging.

It was easy and fun and will be a perfect complement to our other decorations. And, if you haven’t checked out Lauren’s amazing banner (complete with detailed tips, a C.S. Lewis quote, a free cut file for your Silhouette, and POM-POMS!!!), then click HERE right now! And follow her blog and FB page, too! Thank you for the inspiration, Lauren! ♥

T-Shirt Garland Kit

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TopWhen our whole family gathers in over Father’s Day weekend, I want to have some fun crafts that work for *kids* from pre- schoolers to 80+. My latest idea is a decoration that everyone helps create—T-shirt garland! To keep everything handy, I decided to make a kit with all the necessary materials. Then I can simply hang some baker’s twine across the windows and we can pin on our paper T-shirts as we “customize” them.

Box GluedTo make the kit, I first found an empty box that was just the right size. (This one once held a chocolate cake that came in an order one of our kids sent us from Omaha Steaks . . . yum!!!) I cut off the lid and then cut, folded, and glued the lid cardboard to divide the box into four compartments. Here it is with clips holding everything in place while it dried. When the inside was ready, I traced around the outsides and covered them with scrapbook paper, then made a simple word-processed label for the front using clip art and a text box.

Pins and ShirtsNext, I googled “printable t-shirt template” to find a pattern I like and watched a couple of movies while I traced and cut them out on light-colored paper. I also shopped for tiny clothespins and found these at Amazon.com. They’re REALLY tiny—about one inch long—but perfect for hanging paper items. I also found a small empty jar in the pantry to store them in since we’ll need to keep them safely away from the babies and toddlers. (I later glued three of the pins to the lid for a-la-mode.)

Finally, I added markers, crayons, and colored pencils for creating the T-shirt designs. Since I already had these and the paper on hand, my only expense was the clothespins—and they’re so cute I probably would have bought them anyway. :) I’ll be sure to show you a photo of our garland after everyone is here!   P.S. I think this would be a fun way to commemorate family activities over the summer, too . . . books the kids read, trips to the beach and zoo, special treats they get to eat, and that sort of thing. If only I’d thought of that when MY kids were little! ♥

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Monogram Father’s Day Cards

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9-hole buttonsHave you ever heard of 9-hole buttons? And did you know you can use them for words and monograms??? I didn’t until I read this fun post by Nicole on Diary of a Mad Crafter! And Nicole is so clever that she even made her OWN buttons!!!

I found mine at the yehuting Etsy Shop . . . only $4.98 plus shipping for forty. This lovely shop owner has TONS of other amazing notions, too. Do pay her a visit!

We’re having a big family reunion in June that falls on Father’s Day weekend. I wanted to make cards for all the dads who’ll be visiting, and the wooden buttons on plain kraft cardstock worked perfectly for a masculine monogram. I have quite a few left over, too . . . so more projects to come! ♥

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Easy-Peasy PEEPS Garland!

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PEEPS Garland

I love PEEPS . . . even though they make most of the rest of my family go “Ewwwwwwwww . . . !”  But who could resist some adorable PEEPS garland? It’s super easy, and as I made it, I realized I had lots of choices.  So here’s a chart!  Simply pick one thing from each column (which you probably already have around the house!), and soon you’ll have your finished garland hanging among your other spring decor. Here is mine with felt, fabric paint, ric-rac, and machine stitching. (Click on the photo for a close-up.)  Oh, and you can find lots of free templates for the bunny shape on Google images. Have fun! ♥

PEEPS Bunny
Eyes and Nose Garland Attachment Method
  • felt
  • fabric scraps
  • construction paper
  • scrapbook paper
  • brown fabric paint
  • brown permanent marker
  • brown embroidered French knots
  • ric-rac
  • ribbon
  • rope
  • string
  • twine
  • machine stitch
  • hand stitch
  • glue

Trixie Lixie (Don’t you just LOVE that name?)

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I was the amazingly lucky winner of a recent giveaway on the Trixie Lixie blog . . . a beautiful fabric covered journal! I just love it, and it even has a pocket on the inside back cover. Then, as if that wasn’t enough, Tracy also sent me one of the new knicker kits she sells in her shop! Just look at this pretty fabric and elastic! I can’t wait to try this project! Following are LOTS of links you can follow to check out Tracy”s creativity from this post or anytime from my Shop Love! page above. Thank you, Tracy! ♥

  • Click here for the Trixie Lixie blog.
  • Click here for a tutorial on making fabric-covered journals.
  • Click here for a knicker tutorial.
  • Click here for the Trixie Lixie shop.
  • Click here for the Trixie Lixie FB page.

Knicker Kit

FREEBIE ALERT: The Upcycling Queen Strikes Again!

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Book CoverIn my “Meet an Upcycling Queen” post last month, I introduced Mahe of Altered Upcycling. Many of you picked up the free ebook she offers from her blog and loved it! Now Mahe has another free offer starting TOMORROW, February 23 and running through Wednesday, February 27—a card-making ebook available here on Amazon.com.  (If you don’t have a Kindle, you can download “Kindle for PC” from Amazon.com here, also for free.)  Mahe was kind enough to send me a preview copy, and I found:

  • cards featuring paint chips along with items many of us already have around the house,
  • cards for lots of different holidays, seasons, and occasions,
  • step-by-step directions and photographs,
  • links to youtube video demonstrations,
  • and much, much more!

Please take a moment to help yourself to this lovely gift which is regularly $2.99 but ours for free for the next five days. Thank you, Mahe! ♥

Charlotte’s Fancy

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I recently won a 2013 Art Calendar by Blue Sky and Egg Press in a giveaway sponsored by my blogging friend Molly of Charlotte’s Fancy. It’s PERFECT for my home office! Then, generous person that she is, she also added a whole BAG of cards and labels—some artistic, some crafty, and some cute.  I put a few of them in the collage below . . . I just love them all!  If you’re not already acquainted with Molly, please check out her blog, including the “About” page where you can find links to her projects that have been featured on other blogs and even in magazines! Thank you Molly! ♥

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From Scraps to Crafts

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See these beautiful flowers? They’re painted on a vinyl record album!!! I love it! This work of art was created by my friend Kristin and her parents. Kristin was a student teacher in my school and is now a full-fledged teacher, newlywed, and brand-new Etsy shop owner. I’d like to invite you to check out Kristin’s blog here and her shop here—featuring painted glassware, handmade cards, candle holders, and more—or anytime from my Shop Love! page above. Thank you again for the lovely gift, Kristin! ♥

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Clouds of Colour

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As you know, I LOVE writing to people on notecards with original art. My New Zealand blogging friend Bec of Clouds of Colour has gorgeous prints in her Etsy shop, and when I asked her if she could transform this beautiful pink doily crochet watercolor into cards, she jumped right on it! I know you’ll enjoy checking out Bec’s work from the links in this post or anytime from my Shop Love! page above. Thank you for the lovely purchase and customer service across the ocean, Bec!

  • Click here for Bec’s blog.
  • Click here for Bec’s FB page.
  • Click here for Bec’s Etsy shop.

P.S. Please help yourself to Bec’s adorable and FREE downloadable, printable gift cards, perfect for Valentine’s Day and other special occasions. Just lick HERE! I can’t wait to use them . . . thank you again, Bec!  ♥

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More Art Card Love!

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Ooohhh . . . MORE cards with reproductions of original art!  And they’ll be PERFECT for invitations for a big birthday party I’m throwing this summer for the head cowboy in our family, thanks to my blogging friend Beverly of Beverly Dyer Fine Art and Stationery, who also sells her beautiful creations in many stores in the Chapel Hill, North Carolina area.  She even added this beautiful memo pad to my order!  Click here for Beverly’s web site, here for her blog, and here for her Etsy shop featuring painted art prints, cards, pendants, and pillows, or find her links anytime in my Shop Love! page above.  Thank you, Beverly! ♥

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Gone Rustic and Stitched Up Mama

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I absolutely love to send people cards made from original art and photography reproductions, so I was very excited to find these in the Redbubble Shop of my blogging friend Rita from Australia! Rita has her own studio and gallery, teaches classes, hosts exhibitions, and has MANY creative irons in the fire including quilts, fibre and textile art, mixed media, and collectibles. Here are Rita’s links, which you can locate anytime in my Shop Love! page above:

Thank you for the beautiful cards, Rita! ♥

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Birthday Card Love

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Mobile FramedFramed in frameRemember the beautiful birthday cards I received a week ago today?  The fabric postcard is framed (Laura wrote a how-to post about it and I even commented . . . never knowing what she was up to! :)), twenty are on my photo mobile, and the rest are displayed in a beautiful bowl. Thank you again for the wonderful surprise! ♥

Meet An Upcycling Queen!

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Free BookDo your New Year’s resolutions include using more of what you already have in your crafting, gift-making, and home decor?  Then you’ll want to meet Mahe at The Altered Upcycling Blog and Altered Upcycling. Mahe explains that she has a Master’s degree in Operations Research, works at a software house, and is an avid altered artist who is constantly looking for ways to make the world greener one small craft project at a time.  And, if you sign up on her blog or web site, you’ll receive her FREE pdf book called The Ultimate Guide to Upcycling  for one-of-a-kind jewelry, cards, gift bags, wall art, and more.  Mahe sends out free ideas and how-to videos in her email newsletter as well, such as how to make a beautiful card from a dinner napkin, old dictionary page, leftover ribbon, and glue!  Mahe writes in a friendly, conversational style as if she’s sitting right beside you, includes what worked and DIDN’T work for her, and supports her ideas with step-by-step directions, photographs, and alternatives.  You can get your copy by clicking on the link in this post or any time from my Shop Love! page above.  Thank you, Mahe! ♥

J-O-Y to the World!

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J-O-Y

Welcome to the “JOYFUL” edition of Collectively Creative, hosted by Kelly of Cobwebs, Cupcakes & Crayons! My project is easy and fun . . . similar to the Instagram collage letters I made this summer. . . . and I love how it turned out!

(1) Purchase some wooden letters at a craft store. Mine are 12 inches tall and were on sale for around $2 each.

(2) Optional: Paint the letters and let them thoroughly dry. I spray painted these with the green paint left over from my antique milk bottle project.

(3) Get out Christmas cards you received and saved from last year and cut out pictures and words to fit the shapes of the letters, overlapping them as in a collage. Attach these bits with Mod Podge. Or, if you don’t have cards available, use images and words from holiday magazines.

(4) When each surface is covered to your satisfaction, coat the entire letter with Mod Podge and let it thoroughly dry.

(5) Display your letters on a shelf or drill small holes or attach hanging hardware to the backs and hang them on the wall. Mine are now over the stairs along with my peppermint wreath where they’ll greet our Christmas Day guests at the front door. ♥

P.S. Before I link to our other Collectively Creative posts, I’d like to give a shout out to some other amazing bloggers who have shared their J-O-Y this season. Thank you to ALL of you for your inspiration!

Daisey Jane

Alana Jones-Mann

My Latest Project

Diary of a Mad Crafter

Our Next Great Adventure

Made in a Day (and here!)

The Joyful Edition Logo 2012COLLECTIVELY CREATIVE:

More Shop Love!

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Today I’d like to highlight three more of our WordPress blogging friends who have lovely handmade items you’ll want to check out! Read about them here today and anytime on my Shop Love! page above.

(1) I Love Cards & Design: Click here for Patricia’s lovely blog and here for her Etsy shop. I LOVE these chevron cards! You can choose your own colors (or a mixture like these) and get any name or message on the front. I asked for “Happy Birthday” so I can use them for extra-classy greeting cards in the new year. Patricia also has other fun items, such as calling cards, favor boxes, and birth announcements. Plus, her customer service and packaging are SO professional! Thank you, Patricia!

(2) Jewels for All: Click here for Stefanie’s fun, creative blog and here for her Etsy shop. These gorgeous red earrings will be a gift for someone special . . . if I can part with them! :) Stefanie also has many other one-of-a-kind earrings, bracelets, and necklaces. I really love your work, Stefanie!

(3) I’d Rather Be Crafting: I just met Eleanor, a new WordPress blogger here, but she makes the cutest coin pouches and matching keychains (along with other crafty items) that she sells on her Eleanor’s Creations Facebook page. To order, simply write “Sold” in the comment section and message her the email address associated with your PayPal account, and she will email you an invoice. I’ll have fun gifting these to some girls on my list, Eleanor! ♥

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3-Evelyn's Bags

More Shop Love!

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1-CalendarLast week I put out my first “Shop Love!” post.

I wanted to start promoting our blogging friends’ small businesses.

I’ve done a little more shopping . . .

and I won a giveaway . . .

so today I’d like to highlight four more bloggers and stores.

Once again, each one impressed me with both their BEAUTIFUL products . . .

and their QUALITY customer service.

Here are their contact links!

You can also check them out ANYtime on my new “Shop Love” page above. ♥

(1) The Original Thread: I fell in LOVE with this inspirational 2013 calendar, which is designed by Melanie of The Original Thread blog and sold as a fabric panel in her Spoonflower shop at Madex Designs. She has many other gorgeous fabrics as well!

2-pdf Patterns(2) Terri’s Notebook: I recently won a lovely giveaway from Terri’s Notebook—two pdf patterns. I was going to wait until I made the items to share them . . . but that hasn’t happened yet, so I’ll share what they WILL look like. :) The first pattern is for Stuff Baskets and the second is for a Checkerboard Set, and both are for sale at her Patchwork Trails Etsy Shop. You can also visit Terri’s portfolio here and her paper goods shops here. Terri’s motto is “Explore. Dream. Create.” Don’t you love that? ♥

3-Apron(3) A Kitschy Kitchen: I’m just starting to make aprons myself, but I know someone on my gift list who will LOVE this one! It’s from Megan of A Kitschy Kitchen: The Life and Studio of an Apronista who sells her creations at her Etsy shop. Notice, too, the adorable fabric gift card holder! Stressing quality as well as beauty, Megan’s motto is “Buy Well, Buy Once.” She also has some other lovely items in her shop, such as embroidery, cocktail napkins, and coasters.

4-Tags(4) TheHighNoteDotNet: I’ve followed Darilyn’s lovely blog thehighnotedotnet for a long time now and was so excited to receive my first purchase from her Etsy shop, which specializes in vintage music projects. Darilyn even included a little gift . . . a copy of my favorite quote, which I embroidered on a pillow and she offers to all of us for free to make an iron-on transfer. She graciously provides tutorials for her projects as well. And check out her craft room . . . it’s amazing!

 

Debbie Does Doodles

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Yes . . . I was the very lucky winner of another blog giveaway! Debbie of Debbie Does Doodles made these fun and lovely tags and labels and included a sweet note on a vintage postcard that made me smile. Isn’t her work amazing? THANK YOU, Debbie! I appreciate you! ♥

Handmade Cards

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I know . . . I’ve been winning WAY more than my share of blog giveaways lately!  But . . . they’re so much fun! :)   And look at these BEAUTIFUL handmade cards I received in the mail from my new friend Vickie of Horsemark Cards!

Please take a moment to get acquainted with Vickie by clicking here for her blog, here for her FB page, and here for her store.  Vickie—they’re spectacular, and I can’t thank you enough for such a lovely gift. ♥

Mrs. Hetherington’s Thanksgiving Pageant

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Welcome to the “THANKFUL” edition of Collectively Creative! Today I have a giveaway for all of our blogging friends . . . one of my children’s stories from Pockets magazine for you to read, share, and/or use to introduce a creative writing activity about holidays.  Simply click the first link for a printable word document or the second link for a printable pdf.

Mrs. Hetherington’s Thanksgiving Pageant (word document)

Mrs. Hetherington’s Thanksgiving Pageant (pdf)

I hope some special kids in your life will enjoy meeting Mrs. Hetherington and her Portland Elementary School Drama Club this holiday season! But first, please pour a cup of tea and take a few minutes to savor the rest of this month’s Collectively Creative posts. Each one has something special to enrich our lives. Happy Thanksgiving! ♥

P.S. If you’re a parent, grandparent, children’s book reviewer, librarian, or teacher, please check out the new kids’ Thanksgiving book called Sarah Gives Thanks by one of our fellow WordPressers, Mike Allegra at heylookawriterfellow. I bought a copy, and it’s a keeper!

COLLECTIVELY CREATIVE:

That Kara Lynn is SO Creative!

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I got the sweetest giveaway gift in the mail today . . . stationery, notecards, and a memo pad designed by the fabulous designer Kara of Karalynn Creative . . . plus, the most amazing pencil I’ve ever seen made by Anthropologie! Besides Kara’s WordPress blog, she has a lovely Etsy shop for you to visit, too. Thank you, Kara! ♥

How Cute Are These???

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I met my super-crafty, super-sweet, and super-pretty daughter-in-law Shannon for coffee, and look what she made for me!  Tiny easels with paint and ribbon a-la-mode and tiny art canvases with paint and paper decoupage (and tiny spools for Frankenstein!) for my Halloween decor!  I LOVE them!  THANK YOU, Shannon! ♥  P.S. Click here to see an example of Shannon’s mixed media “She Art.”

Owl Treat Bags

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My crafty friend Debbie gave me a fun gift. . . a sample of her new Halloween treat bag! Isn’t he cute??? Mine is filled with paper to use as a decoration, and he looks right at home beside my bowl of giant fabric candy corn! I’m going to try my best to make some for our trick-or-treaters this year. Thank you, Debbie! ♥  P.S. If you love owls, remember that you can get a free David Bromstad owl art print by following the link you’ll find here!

Instagram Collage Letters

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I was so intrigued when I saw some wooden letters decoupaged with maps on House of 34 and decided to make a set for a gift. However, the birthday guy is an amazing photographer who creatively explores the city of Philadelphia with all of its amazing architecture, landmarks, murals, and street art. So . . . I printed off some of my favorite Instagram photos he’s shared on FB and cut out different bits to create a “Mod Podge collage” on each letter instead. I love that I can show him how proud I am of him . . . and it was fun, too! ♥  P.S. You can follow on Instagram at mr_fisher. And Ashley Bollinger has some other fun Instagram art projects here.

Artists I Admired On Our Trip

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On our recent trip to visit Baby Katy, I saw some adorable creations in her nursery! I also discovered the most amazing fabric art at the Philadelphia International Airport—Kay Healy’s “Coming Homelife-sized fabric mural in Terminal E. (Click on photo above for a larger view).  I couldn’t stop looking at all the intricate details!

Now for those fun nursery ideas . . .

(1) The top picture is “She Art” lovingly created by Katy’s Aunt Shannon. Visit Christy Tomlinson’s blog (the founder of She Art) to learn more about this art form.

(2) The owl and flower paper collages are by a lovely interior designer and friend of Katy’s mom and dad. Please check out her web site at Ashley Heath Design. (And we loved how the flowers coordinate with Katy’s new mobile!)

(3) Katy’s mommy, author of the delicious cooking blog Consumed: My Culinary Adventure, made this beautiful curtain “gift-wrapped” with ties sewn from a coordinating fabric. I love it! ♥

Stylin’ in the Kitchen

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Lucky me . . . I won the giveaway from Kelly at Boomdeeadda, a lovely handmade apron, mitts, and card! I’ve displayed the card and tucked the apron and mitts away for Thanksgiving so I’ll be stylin’ when all our family is here. Thank you, Kelly!  P.S. Click here for my last apron post. ♥

Class Reunion Garland

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In my spare moments this week, I’ve been standing at the kitchen island turning the scrapbook paper circles I cut out on our recent road trip into garland for my class reunion this weekend. The first string I made was plain blue and gold, but I decided to have fun with this one and add some designs. Oh, and I also found some pretty blue and gold fabrics for the tables. It seems like only yesterday that we were wearing these colors for our high school activities! But I love “now” WAY more, don’t you? ♥

Dragonfly Mini Notebook

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One of my teacher/writing group friends just got her first publication acceptance, so I wanted to give her a gift that includes the dragonfly on her business cards. I traced the dragonfly on a small scrap of sheer fabric, triple-folded it for strength, and embroidered over the lines. Then I cut it out and glued the body onto a flower on the cover of one of my mini-notebooks, leaving the wings free. Oh, and I wrote a message for her to discover on the first page. I’m SO happy for Pam! ♥

5-Minute Project

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If you, like me, keep many of your sewing/crafting supplies out in the open in decorative containers, you’ll love this quick-’n-easy project from Dianne Faw! Simply take the cover out of a tape dispenser, use it as a template to make a new, pretty one (from scrapbook paper, gift wrap, a map, whatever you have on hand), and put the new cover in. So cute! ♥

P.S. I’m keeping my new dispensers in this fabric basket that I fashioned from an “oops” while making my first bracelet purse. And if you haven’t tried a bracelet purse yet, click here. They’re so much fun to make and give for little girl gifts!

Birthday Card Garland

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I’ve been trying to think of a fun way to display greeting cards rather than taping them to the frig (HO-HUM!).  Seeing LOTS of garland (a.k.a. bunting) on Pinterest gave me an idea for our fireplace mantel.  It was super-easy! I used some of the scrapbook paper from my mini-notebook project and the peanut butter lid from my road trip flowers project to cut out circles.  I then folded them in half, unfolded them, dabbed them with a glue stick, and folded them back over some twine. I love how festive and colorful Dave’s birthday cards look now . . . I think I’ll leave them up for awhile! ♥

 

Mini Notebooks

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The next best thing to pretty fabric is pretty paper! Although I don’t scrapbook, I love to walk through that department at my favorite craft/sewing stores and couldn’t resist buying this beautiful collection when I saw it marked down from $19.99 to $9.99. (Click on photo for a larger view.) Of course, then I had to come up with a project for it, so here it is! Start by buying some mini composition notebooks. (Target has two-packs for 99 cents.) Then . . .

(1) Use a notebook to make a pattern on a piece of cardboard. Leave a little extra on both sides to fold over the front and back notebook covers, and mark where all the folds should go.

(2) Use the pattern to cut out the scrapbook paper and to draw the fold lines on the back.

Inside Front

Inside Back

(3) Fold on the lines the wrong way and then the right way, making firm creases. Then glue the cover onto the notebook starting with the spine, then the covers, then the flaps.

Following are three additional options you can use to “dress up” your notebook . . . choose one, two, or all three. For me, what I chose depended on the cover design. For example, one has cute little birds on it and a spine cover would have hidden one of them, and another has words on it so I didn’t want to cover them with a label.

OPTION 1: BEFORE gluing on the cover, put a colored brad about ½ inch from the middle of the edge on both the front and back cover. Put a small coated ponytail rubber band  around the back-cover brad and fasten the brad as tightly as possible. Leave the brad on the front cover a bit loose. Then, after you glue the cover onto the notebook, pull the rubber band from the back and loop it over the front brad.

Back

Front

OPTION 2: Choose a contrasting or coordinating strip of paper for a spine cover, prepare the folds, and glue it onto the spine, holding it for a bit until the glue dries.

OPTION 3: Make a small name label out of another scrap. If you like, make “stitches” around the edges with a colored pen.

Your notebook is now ready to toss into your purse or give away . . . perfect for a small hostess or gal-pal gift. Or, turn it into an extra-special greeting card by writing a happy birthday/get well soon/congratulations/thinking of you message on the front page of the notebook for the recipient to discover and putting it in a colorful envelope.  Now, what to make with the rest of this fun paper . . . ♥  UPDATE: Click here for MORE mini-notebook!