Thursday, September 22, 2011

Yes, I am the worst blogger ever.  As soon as real life starts, blogging gets dumped.  Spring break?  Great time for blogging.  Long weekends?  Also great.  Summer holidays?  When could be a better time to devote myself to regular posts.  Back to work in September? .....  Is that the sound of crickets I hear?  Might as well be.

In between going back to work, teaching a new course, prepping for craft fairs, and putting on workshops, I have had very little time for blogging.  My apologies to anyone in cyberspace that actually gives a you-know-what.  But, here I am, cramming in a post when I really want to be cramming baked goods into my mouth while sitting in front of the fireplace watching The Borgias.

Last weekend I had an awesome workshop with all new ladies, and had a blast.  We were quite the bunch.  Lots of giggles and some beautiful cards were the result of our morning.  These are 2 of the cards we created.

The first one was really the first time I'd attempted emboss reveal on such a large scale.  I love how the white medallion stands out against the Island Indigo.  It's a little hard to see the background image that lies beneath the medallion, but it's lovely French script, courteousy of En Francais.  I inked EF in Daffodil Delight and stamped the image.  Then I inked the heck of of the Medallion with Versamark (wonder-ink extraordinaire).  After that it took a little plunge into come clear embossing powder and ran over it with my heat tool.  I used a brayer to ink the rest of the card, and wiped off the Medallion when I was satisfied with my coverage.

This card was a snap to put together.  I don't think it really needs any explanation, but I guess you could do some stamping on the Crumb Cake if you really wanted to.  I didn't.  Obviously.

Stamps:  Medallion, En Francais
Ink:  Daffodil Delight, Island Indigo
Paper:  Daffodil Delight, Island Indigo, Whisper White, Crumb Cake, Wiseria Wonder, Elegant Eggplant, First Edition DSP
Extras:  Clear embossing powder, heat tool, Fun Flowers die, Crumb Cake buttons, Wisteria Wonder ruffled ribbon, hemp twine

Sunday, September 4, 2011

Table Favours

This weekend my favourite cousin came down to hang out and help me get some stuff ready for the craft fair.  (It's next weekend - ask me if I'm ready.  The answer is no.)  Along with helping me Mod Podge about 4000000 tiles, she helped me cut and stick together these cute little place savers for Thanksgiving dinner. I really liked this idea, so I thought I'd go to the trouble of showing you how to do it.  You're welcome.  If anyone actually tried making these as a result of this post, please leave me a comment!

Step 1:  Cut a piece of pretty paper 5 1/4 X 4 1/4 and attach a sticky strip along the shorter side.

Step 2:  Use a punch of your choice to make a window at the half way mark of the long side.  You want the window to be about 1/3 of the way into the short side so that when you pinch the ends it has room.

Step 3:  Attach a piece of clear plastic behind your window (I got mine from a craft store, but I think you could use overhead transparencies as well) on the OPPOSITE side of the sticky tape.  (Tape on front, plastic on back.)

Step 4:  Remove the backing from the tape and roll your paper up into a tube, using the tape to adhere the sides together.

Step 5:  Line up the window so it's in the middle (your seam should be right underneath it).  Pinch the sides together and create a crease about 1cm long.  Attach a piece of sticky tape in here and close it up.

Step 6: On the other end, pinch the ends together in the opposite direction.  In the above photo, I've pinched together the horizontal sides.  For the other end I pinch together the vertical sides.  Apply sticky tape, but don't close it yet.  Fill with goodies and then tape shut.

Embellish however you like!

Thursday, September 1, 2011

Tiles Tiles Everywhere

Ok, so here's my post about these awesome tiles.  This is definitely not my creation, but I'm too lazy to find where the idea came from, and I'm sure about 500 other people have also posted about it, so whatever.

You will need the stuff in the picture above (Modgepodge, 4 x 4 tiles - glossy finish is just fine, 3.75 x 3.75 pieces of scrapbooking paper, a sponge brush, acrylic sealer, and some felt for the backs).  Extra tools include cup of tea, stack of cookies to dip in tea, and chocolates to nibble on once your cookies run out and you're still waiting for things to dry.

Cut up your paper (I did mine in sets of 6 - 2 pieces of coordinating paper will give you 3 sets of coasters) and lay down some newspaper so you don't wreck the place.

Using your sponge brush, cover the surface of the tile with MP.  Don't be skimpy on this layer since you really need the paper to stick so it doesn't lift up.  That said, be sensible.  It shouldn't look like the kids from the daycare next door are making these things.

Once you've covered your tile with the MP, line up your paper so that all sides are even.  Gently press down on your paper and then starting from one corner, apply pressure with your fingers so that the paper is applied evenly, and there are no air bubbles.  Air bubbles = headache and cursing later on.

After the paper's down, put on another layer of MP.  Once this dries, you're going to do another layer or two, depending on how ambitious you are.  On the second layer, you'll be able to see the MP a little bit, but it dries clear, so don't freak out.  Again, I'll remind you that it shouldn't look like a four year old is in charge though.

Once your MP is dry (I left mine over night just to be sure) apply a nice generous coating of acrylic sealer to your tiles.  They should be nice and shiny.  Don't skimp here either.  The bottle is about $10 and it will easily cover about 150 tiles.  This is the layer that makes them water resistant.

Make sure that you spray your tiles in a place that you can leave them over night.  The can I used said you could handle them within an hour, but I'm not taking any chances.

After you're sure the sealer is dry, apply felt backing so they don't scratch up your table.  I bought the sheets of sticky-backed  stuff at Wal Mart for about $4, and cut it into 3x3 pieces.  One package took care of 60 coasters.  Once you're done, tie 'em up with a pretty bow and voila!  Instant present.

You can go gonzo like I am and make a whole lot in one sitting and then give them to everyone that you know for Christmas.  Of you can be like an ordinary person and just make a few for some close friends.

Oh, speaking of paper.  The thicker paper required more layers of MP than the thin stuff did.  

Hope you like this one!