Monday, September 17, 2012

Time to Play!

Hi, all!  I am so happy and thankful that I have had time to play with my Counterfeit Kit this month!  Here are two pages I have already done.  (Or is it considered one?  It's a double page, so does that count as one or as two?  Hmm....)  The first challenge over at Counterfeit Kit Challenge is to use an old item in our stash.  Well, these pages have brads on them, and they are as old as they come!  Of course, the largest portion of my stash is old, so it really wasn't a stretch.  And if I can be honest, I was going to add the brads to these pages even before the challenge was issued.  So, not sure if I'm cheating or not! Ha ha!  (I also used an old tool that hadn't seen daylight in a while-my templates.  Just sayin', you know, in case that helps my cause any!)

 These pages are about my son's 2nd birthday party.  (Reminder: he's almost 21 years old now, so these are certainly not current photos!)  First, the two pages together:

And here's each page in more detail:

The number 2 used in the title on page 1 is actually a chipboard letter, a lower case "a" with some strategic cutting to make it into a number 2.  I used a combination of Spellbinder dies and an old template to cut the ovals.  I only have one set of the oval dies, and it happened that the next sized oval up was too big for the look I wanted.  I should get the other set of oval dies that has all the "in between" sizes from mine, but I just don't want to spend the money right now. So, I improvised and used my trusty old oval template to draw and hand cut the sizes I needed.  Hey, it works for me!

I'm also working on another page now, using that great sketch provided from CKC the other day.  I'm almost finished with it, so will be posting it soon!

Thanks for dropping by and happy crafting!

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Copy That & MIA

It's that time of month again!  Time to play with Counterfeit Kit Challenge.  This month's inspiration kit is the Birds of A Feather August 2012 kit:

I really like the colors and the embellishments.  And some of the embellishments look like they'd be really easy to copy.  (Bonus!)

I didn't get to play *i.e. scrapbook, craft, create, make kits, etc.* as much as I'd have liked to the last couple of months.  (More on that in a minute.)  But, because of that, my July counterfeit kit has gone completely untouched and it's too good of a kit to just put away and forget.  (August was completely skipped, but more on that in a minute.)  So, I decided to go with a small kit for this month.  Here's my version of the September kit that I call "Let's Play" (because it's time for me to get back to playing/crafting/creating/etc.):
It all started with the star paper in the top right corner.  As soon as I saw the starburst paper in the inspiration kit, I thought of this star paper in my stash that I'd been holding on to for like, forever.  I knew I wanted to do a layout of some pictures of my son when he was a toddler with this paper, but just hadn't "got around to it."  (How many things to we all have like that?)  So, I knew it was time to get it finally done! (*cough* Should I mention that my son is now almost 21 years old?  Nah, let's just move on....)  The rest of the papers were just pulled from that.  I didn't include any cardstock, because I thought the pattern papers in the bottom left hand corner can be used instead.  I will add cardstock as I go, if I find a need to.

Here are some purchased embellishments (stickers and rubons),  chipboard letters, stamps, bakers twine, and twill ribbon I hope to use up.  And, yes, you read the prices right on those two packs of stickers and rubons.  I only paid $1 each for those at a local yard sale.  (Score!)

Here are the embellishments that I made to copy those in the inspiration kit:
I used some Cuttlebug dies to cut the flowers from felt, and I went ahead and cut some stars too, since I know I mostly do boy layouts.  The "rulers" are to mimic the ruler washi tape in the inspiration kit.  I made those with  some ink and Cuttlebug embossing folders (except for the blue one which was cut from some product packaging).  The canvas banners and pennants are cut from some scrap material (my husband's old stained shirt that I knew I'd kept for a good reason!) and handsewn along the edges.  I decided to wait on adding any eyelets or brads until I'm actually using them on a page, that way I can color coordinate them if I choose to.  Otherwise I will probably just put silver eyelets on them like the inspiration kit has. The paperclips I made by just slipping some regular paperclips through some bows that I had received in a goodie package from a friend many moons ago and never used (used a spot of glue to make sure the bows didn't slip off).

Here are some journaling cards that I cut with some Sizzix and Spellbinder dies (then inked the edges of the kraft ones with white paint), and some hand made envelopes.  Not sure how or if I'll use the envelopes, but we'll see what happens as I go.

I, of course, reserve the right to pull more stamps (especially alphabet stamps) and maybe some brads or buttons as I go.

I hope to get to play with this kit, as well as my July kit (see my last blog post below for that one), and finally get some pages made for my albums.  Like I said before, I haven't got to play for a couple of months now and have been MIA.  And I certainly have missed playing!!  Unfortunately, I had some health issues to take priority, and they led to a surgery which led to some recovery time.  Thank God, and I'm thankful for the fact, it was nothing life threatening or will need no major follow up treatments.  But, it certainly caused an interruption to "Normal Life."  (Of course, that's a relative term, because is life really any thing like normal around here? Ha ha). But now, I'm at the end of my recovery where I feel ok, but not released to go back to work yet, so I can play (without the guilt) for a while.  Of course, in a week or two, it will be back to work and back to "Normal Life." :)  If I can be honest, it's a bitter sweet thing! :)

Thanks for dropping by and happy crafting!

Saturday, July 14, 2012

Counterfeit-ing Fun

Counterfeit-ing is fun!  Counterfeit Kitting, that is!  I've been lurking around over at Counterfeit Kit Challenge for quite a while now.  Each month, they profile a designer scrapbook kit then challenge you to come up with your own version of it using your own stash.  Then they give you tutorials on how to make your own counterfeited embellishments, rather than buy, and they even give you challenges to use your "new" kit.  I *love* the concept!  Who wouldn't?  But, I was just never sure if using a kit was for me.  I've been concerned that I wouldn't have any pictures to use to match the kit, or that my pages would all start looking the same, or that I would simply get bored with just choosing from a select few items.  But, I've so thoroughly enjoyed watching the design team and other followers build their kits, make their embellies, and create so many pages.  And I noticed that none of their pages never looked "all the same" but instead had lots of variety and fresh looks, and covered so many different types of pictures (events, etc.) and, more importantly, they were all having so much fun!  Well, I finally just had to give it a try!  At first, I thought I'd keep in small and simple, you know, just to try it out.  But, as you will see below, I kind of got a little carried away, and well, it's anything but small!

This month, the Counterfeit Kit Challenge's inspiration is a kit called Summer Boardwalk from Citrus Twist:
 I love the colors and the feel of this kit, and I could already mentally pick which photos in my photo box I could use it for!  I went to my stash and started pulling things!  I, sadly, am so out of "fashion" with my scrapbook supplies that I did not have any of the trendy chevrons, or that beautiful coral color, or even any of that brilliant turquoise, all of which I love so much!  But, I made do with what I do have and I think I captured the same feel.  Here is my kit, that I call "Summer Twist":

With some of the sheets, I pulled two of the same design, in case I wanted to make 2 page layouts and needed the extra, while others are singles (mostly because they were the only one left). I also added lots more cardstock than the inspiration kit because I find I typically use alot. I also included some scrap pieces and sheets from some small paper pads (seen in lower left corner). I even included a piece of repurposed packaging because it happen to be laying on my craft table and it matched (lower right corner)!  Instead of a vintage book page like the inspiration kit had, I just included some text patterned paper.

Here are the embellishments that I pulled together:

For alpha's, I pulled the unused sheet from a store bought page kit that I never used and I also pulled my ColorBok Alpha Punch Out Pad. I've had that pad for years and have used so little of it, but not sure why. It has like a dozen different color of alphas in there, all of which match this kit. So, hopefully, I can finally use some of it! If I should find that I need something else, then I reserve the right to pull out either my alpha stamps or alpha die cut sets (my "fall back" teams!). I've included some cardstock flowers, frames, jeweled brads, and journaling tags. Instead of thread like the inspiration kit, I have some old "fibers." Remember that stuff? Instead of washi tape, I just have ribbon and some border stickers. I've included some already sewn bits of cardstock (left over from another project but too neat to throw away). Instead of linen fabric, I have some scrap white sheer fabric. I thought it felt light and breezy, and reminded me of summer. I discovered I don't really have that many phrase stickers or cardstock phrases, but I just threw in what I have. The only stamp I pulled is my new Seven Gypsies journal block stamp. But, I have soooo many phrase and word stamps, and well just stamps in general!, that I reserve the right to pull from them as I go along. I included some white, off white, blue and green buttons, and even some beach themed buttons, since I hope to use this kit for some beach photos.

The inspiration kit has some really neat shaped wood pieces, of which I have nothing like in my stash. I did include a couple of phrase stickers that I found that had a woodgrain-ish background, and some heart and star shaped buttons that had a woodgrain-ish appearance. I also hope to try my hand at counterfeiting some more wood grain embellies using the tutorials that CKC has already posted.

Well, that's it for my very first counterfeit kit! I have to say that I'm quite proud of the kit I've pulled together, and I had a LOT of fun doing it! Counterfeit-ing is fun! I'm sorry I haven't tried it sooner! Now, I'm afraid I might have made a little TOO BIG of a kit, especially when you consider what little scrapping time I have these days. But, I figure it's a learning experience either way, I can always keep it together and use it even after this month is over (after all, there are no rules or expiration dates), and the worst that can happen is that I have to put all the stuff back where I got it from in a few months if not used. But, in the meantime, I could possibly get alot of use out of it and possibly/probably will use up alot of my stash and get some great pages for my albums!

Yeah, I think I like my counterfeit-ing. Now, to start using it!

Until next time, happy crafting!

Been a while.....

So, it's been a while since I've posted to my blog.  Doesn't mean I haven't been crafting and creating, because I have been.  Since I got my new job a few months ago (Yay!), I just find that I don't have as much crafting time as I used to.  When I do get the time, I want to spend it doing more, well, crafting, rather than wrestling with the dinosaur (our old slow computer) to upload pictures and post.  But, now that I'm getting back in to the swing of things with a full time job and handling all the house/family/life things, I hope to start posting some.  Plus, I have some new things I want to try......

Until next time, happy crafting!

Monday, October 31, 2011

Halloween Happenings!

Hello, and Happy Halloween! We've never really been huge on Halloween around our house for ourselves, and since we don't have any little kids anymore, Halloween has certainly lost what little pizazz or fun it used to have. But, it IS fun to see how all the neighborhood kids have grown since last year!

But, I have done a few Halloween theme crafts lately. I've made some pumpkin spice cupcakes with orange cream cheese icing. They were soooo easy, it's almost a trick!

(Sidenote: Like my make-shift cupcake stand? It's two plates with a drinking glass in the middle, ha ha! Hey, make do with what you have I say!) I, for one, don't like recipes that involve a lot of ingredients. Get too many ingredients involved and I start flaking out. But I saw this recipe floating around the internet lately and knew immediately it was right up my alley. You take a box of spice cake mix and a 15 oz can of pumpkin, mix it up and put it in the cupcake pan. Cook it at 350 degrees for 20-25 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean and you're done. See? Told you it was easy! I did put one egg in the mix as all the ones I'd seen around blog-lands looked kind of flat and I thought maybe an egg would help fluff it up a bit. Sure enough, mine are some tall cupcakes (maybe a little too tall, can't fit it in your mouth all at once!), but good and moist. I took some store bought cream cheese icing, mixed it with the hand mixer (I always do this because the added air not only makes it easier to spread but increases the size making it go farther) while mixing in some yellow and red food coloring until it became the orange I wanted. And TA-DA, Halloween-y cupcakes. You could probably doll them up even more with some candy corn on top or something, but I didn't have any. Love that this recipe can also carry over to Thanksgiving. I'm thinking I'll try it in a loaf pan or something for that? Maybe try a carrot cake mix instead of the spice mix? Or maybe throw some nuts in there? Use sweet potato instead of pumpkin? Or on one of those "bad" days, throw in some chocolate chips? Hmmm......the possibilities!

I also crocheted my next door neighbor's little boy a stuffed jack-o-lantern (you can also see him peeking around in the picture with the cupcakes above), and I crocheted their newborn little girl a pumpkin hat. I figured with the baby being born so close to Halloween, a costume for her was the last thing on Mommy and Daddy's minds so she can now at least sport around the visiting family as a little pumpkin. You'll have to imagine it on a little baby's head, though. As I've said, we don't have little ones here anymore and the dog simply refused to wear it!

I'm sorry but I don't have the sources of these two patterns readily available. I just did Google searches and these were a couple that popped up. If you need it though, leave me a comment and I'll do some digging for that info. I know I altered the one for the stuffed jack-o-lantern a little, as I didn't like the way the stem was just sewn on the top as the pattern called for. The neighbor's little boy is sweet and lovable, but let's face it, he's only 18 months old and can be a bit tough on the toys. Thought it better to have that stem as an actual part of the pumpkin and not easily ripped off! (Yes, the vine and leaf are still sewn on, but at least he'll still look like a pumpkin if they are ripped off. Ha ha!)

Well, gotta get the pounds of candy ready for handing out to the trick-or-treaters! Yes, I said POUNDS! We live in one of only a few subdivisions in the immediate area, so we can get nearly a hundred trick-or-treaters. I usually have to buy about 12-15 pounds of candy, to be sure to have enough. We used to be the ONLY subdivision, it was more like 30 pounds of candy every year. Geesh....for once, I was kind of thankful when "urban sprawl" started working it's way into our area. At least now, the other two subdivisions get to share the candy-load! :)

Happy Halloween!

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Love Forever with a Color and Sketch Challenge

My in-laws had an incredible love for each other, one that lasted them well over 60 years! I am so thankful that I got to know them and I'd rather hear their stories of trials and triumphs over the years better than reading a romance novel or watching a chick-flick any day. Probably because they are real people, and I figure most novels and movies are not! Ha ha! Sadly, my mother-in-law passed away almost eight years ago, and my father-in-law's health has been steadily declining over the last couple of years, but his face still lights up when he talks about his sweetheart! My sister-in-law shared this picture of them taken about 35 years ago. It was a candid shot taken at a relative's wedding reception but, like alot of candid shots, it really captured "them" as a couple. The look on his face says, "I'm a lucky devil and don't I know it!" while her face just shows joy for the moment. Awww, it's such a sweet picture......I HAD to scrap it, of course! And true to my usual way, it's laid on my desk for a while now, just waiting on the right inspiration and muse, which I finally found in the combination of the color challenge at the CR84FN Color Challenge and the sketch challenge over at PageMaps.

Here's the inspiration for the CR84FN challenge:

And here's the sketch at PageMaps:

And finally, here's my page:

I obviously moved some things around from the sketch, but that's the great thing about sketches, right?!? :) I used gray acrylic paint with my stamps to get the two hearts at the top. I stamped the "Love" and fussy cut it out, then edged it with more gray paint and popped it up on foam tape. The quote at the top center is a vellum piece, and I always seem to struggle with how to attach vellum pieces without the adhesive showing. So, I usually end up using brads or eyelets, or my Xyron X sticker maker if it's small enough. This piece was too big for the X, and I didn't want to use brads or eyelets, so I set out to find a new way. I took a square of vellum scrap, which I had cut off the quote piece to get it to the size I wanted, and ran it through my Xyron X, took the clear film off and turned it over and ran it through the X again, which put adhesive on both sides of the vellum piece. Then, I took my 1/4" hole punch and punched out four circles which I used on each of the corners of the quote. When I stuck it all down, the adhesive backed circles just disappeared. Ah ha! I love it when a plan comes together! The hardest part of the process was taking the backing off those little circles to expose the adhesive! Hard to do when you don't have finger nails! :) Back to the page, I used a border stamp to stamp the ribbon. I wanted "Forever" to only show once, as part of the title, so I just took a Post It note to block that part of the stamp off when I inked it up, stamped the diamond shapes along the ribbon until I got to where I wanted the word Forever to show and then I inked up the entire stamp. Things were going according to my plan, until I got to the flower. This is not how I wanted my flower to look, at least it's not what I had visualized in my head. I tried all different techniques, searched the web for tutorials (I'm SURE I saw a flower on the web like I had visualized it my head, my brain is not THAT originally creative, after all), but after two days of struggling, I gave up. I hate when my brain sees something, but my hands are inept to create it. But, I did end up with this flower that I liked so I glued it down quickly before I had a chance to talk myself out of it. After all, as I have to keep reminding myself, I'm not trying to create a Mona Lisa or a Sistine Chapel here, I'm only making a scrapbook page! :)

Anyhow, I hope you enjoy my page and thank you for dropping by. Hope you have a great rest of the weekend, and a very safe and Happy Halloween!

Saturday, October 22, 2011

"C" With a Bit of Thrift!

Over at Scrapbookers Anonymous, they are on their third month of the A to Z challenge. You can check it out here. So, this month we were challenged to use a supply that starts with the letter C. I chose to use some of my crocheting. I love to mix my two favorite hobbies like that!

And where's The Thrift part? Well, you see, the patterned paper I used as the background on this layout is two sided. And I wanted to use the other side as a mat for a photo on another layout, it was just too perfect a match not to. But, I already had the floral side of the paper picked out to scrap this picture of my husband's grandmother. And, of course, I only had one sheet of it. I mean, seriously, what's a scrapper to do in a situation like this?!? So, with some careful planning and measuring, I cut a piece out of the interior of the paper to use as my mat on the other layout, which left this big hole in the paper. I then simply cut a square of the basket weave brown patterned paper, which I had already picked out to use as a mat for the grandmother picture, and adhered it to the BACK side of the hole. Voila, problem solved! I got to use the patterned paper on BOTH layouts, the exact way I wanted to and didn't have to compromise! Ha! Sometimes, it helps to be thrifty!

Thanks for stopping by!