I Like to Make Pinatas!

It’s true, I do. There is something very satisfying with turning cardboard (destined for the recycle bin) and leftover party streamers into something beautiful:

 

Best of all you can make a pinata to go with any party theme and match any color scheme! Here’s how:

 

So, earlier in the week I promised to share my funny pinata story. Well, I assembled the cardboard base while my kids were in school and the cheap dollar store masking tape I was using was lifting up at the edges and I wanted to make sure the pinata would hold up to 12 8 year olds whacking it with a wiffle ball bat (I wanted every kid to get a turn hitting it) so I reenforced a couple of the seams with duct tape. At the party the kids all gave the pinata a couple good whacks and nary a dent was made in that sucker! So they went around again without a blindfold, no hole, no dent, nothing! Parents took turns and still nothing! So finally the string broke and I calmly walked over to it, picked it up and starting smashing it against the tree from which it was hanging. I whacked the heck out of that sucker, not unlike a rock star smashing a guitar on stage. Everyone was silent, they thought I had finally lost my mind, and then all at once the other grownups broke out laughing and the kids dove for the candy. Good times.

 

The moral of that story is do not use duct tape to build your pinata! Thanks for stopping by and til next time happy crafting!

Craft a cute post office playset {for kids!}

It looks like we have a rainy weekend in store for us in New England, I’m glad I have this new project for my kids to play with. I don’t pay for chipboard anymore. I have found that I can simply use the stuff in my recycling bin, namely cereal boxes and they cut great in my electronic die cutter! I used the SVG file from my 3D Mailbox template to make the box and new postal stamps from Pink Persimmon to make stamps and envelopes and other goodies for this play set for kids:

 

Are you ready to get started? Here is a video to show you how it’s done! I’ll even show you how to make your own lick and stick envelope glue,”air mail” bakers twine and custom envelopes!

I did not share how I assembled the mailbox (I used hot glue) but I have a video on this post that will show you how.

Envelope Glue Recipe:

2tbs white glue (not washable)

1tbs white vinegar

2 drops flavored oil such as peppermint

Mix the above ingredients in a jar and brush on envelope flaps or back of paper to make stickers or stamps and let dry before using.

 

I hope you enjoyed this project! Here is a look at the brand new Pink Persimmon Stamps I used:

 

 

 

Here is the 3D Mailbox template from Lindsay’s Stamp Stuff:

 3-D Mailbox Template

Thanks for stopping by and til next time happy crafting!

Get your SHINE on!

Sometimes there is nothing better than glitter…am I right!?! I had seen some lovely cards around the blogosphere with what looked like stamping done on a sheet of glitter. When I was tidying up my cardstock stash the other day I came across 3 packages of Score Tape sheets hiding under a pack of cream cardstock! I grabbed some cardstock, a stamp and some markers and started experimenting and came up with this:

 

I tried this a few different ways but the result I liked best was when I stamped on the cardstock, then placed a sheet of adhesive on top, sprinkled with glitter (and rubbed it down good with a bone folder) then colored it with Sharpie markers. Here is a video to see how it’s done:

Here are some close-ups of the glittery goodness:

 

I’ll have another video for you tomorrow (am I on a roll or what!) Til then happy crafting!

I’m a Chalk Chick & WOYWW!

Boy, I love Wednesdays because I get to snoop around to other crafters desks and not feel one bit self conscious of my housekeeping skills! :D Yes, it is time for my weekly “Craft Hoarding Enablers Group” AKA What’s on your Workdesk Wednesday! Last week I was taken aback by some beautiful PanPastel work done by Jackie at Scrap Bang Wallop (love that name!) and I wanted desperately to get that look…the problem being that I do not have Pan Pastels. They are expensive and they look absolutely brilliant but alas, the do not reside in my stash. No worries, I have regular pastel chalks though so I decided to try to get a similar look with them:

The trouble I was having with my cheap student grade pastels (SMI brand I paid $15 for a box of 48) was that they would not stick to my smooth cardstock (well, duh, I always use pastels on rough paper) so I had to use fixative (OK ,I used hairspray :) ) but the color was still not bold enough. I reckon the pan pastels are just super saturated and they would color anything but I never tried them. So I decided to play around with a damp sponge and it worked! Check out my video to see the technique…I’ll warn you, I’m a little more giddy than usual in this video!

Was that fun or was it just me? You can also stamp with clear embossing ink and use a dry sponge or pom-pom to apply chalk over the stamped image and it will stick to the stamping, that technique is called poppin pastels. Also you can stamp an image and pick up color with a water based blender pen and use that to pick up chalk and paint with it. Chalks are awesome! Here is a look at the chalk backgrounds I made:

 

Thanks for stopping by and if you want to see what other crafters are up to check out WOYWW! Til next time happy crafting!

Want Some Whimsy?

Howdy folks! I had a great weekend, my twins celebrated their 8th birthday with a themeless {gasp!} party. I’m telling you, it was the easiest darn party I have ever thrown! We kept the guest list small (10), it was a breeze and I think everyone had a great time! Since it was a smaller party I wasn’t overwhelmed so I could do a craft project with the girls. I wanted the girls to make some cute photo props that they could pose with and also take home with them.  I used my die cutter and SVG files from Photo Booth Props, Masquerade Masks and my new Royal Whimsy template kits.

I stocked up on sequins, rhinestones, glitter and feathers at the craft store (actually get the glitter and rhinestones at the dollar store, it is way cheaper and you won’t feel bad if a jar of glitter ends up spilled on the floor) and placed them in cute bowls around the craft table (AKA my basement pool table with a piece of plywood on top.) I manned the hot glue gun and helped the girls put the bamboo skewers on the backs of the masks, mustaches and crowns. I had lots of glue sticks and sticky squares on the table for the kids to help themselves to. I was so please at how respectful and polite the girls were. There was no fighting over colors or rudeness whatsoever….did I mention before that this party was a breeze?

I had everything out and ready to go before the kids got there, you DO NOT want to be setting things up while the kids are there, a stitch in time saves nine when kids are concerned!

After the props were finished the kids got to sit outside in the “photo booth” to have their picture taken with their creations!

You know how moms of twins say their kids are opposites? Well, it’s true in my case, before the party both girls were in pretty dresses, 2 minutes before guests arrived Maizy pitched the dress and threw on an old T-shirt and a pair of cutoffs, LOL! True to form :)

I cut a bunch of photo frame cards from the Royal Whimsy kit ahead of time and after I took all of the guests pictures one of my best friends (Thank you Kath!) cut out the photos and assembled these cute thank you party favors to go home with the guests.

While Kathy was crafting the photo frame cards I supervised the piniata…and that is a story for another whole blog post! Here is a look at the kits I used:

Royal Whimsy Party SVG

Photo Booth Props!

Masquerade Mask SVG

My kids had a blast, of course the biggest entertainment of the afternoon was chicken chasing, we teased the other moms that the girls would be coming home with chickens as party favors (can you imagine…come to think of it that might be why many of the moms stayed-they did not want their daughters coming home with livestock LOL!) The girls also left with one of the party favors I showed you in yesterday’s post. I am trying to get away from the candy and crappy toy party favors…trying :) I hope I gave you a few ideas for your next party and til next time happy crafting!

Look What I Made with a Slim Jim Box!

No box is safe around here, LOL! When my kids finished up the box of Slim Jims (Yes, I know, not healthy) my son asked me if I wanted the box. I did! And here is what I made with it:

 

A party favor dispenser! I used YES! paste to adhere this lovely American Crafts paper (It is a couple of years old from the “Dear Lizzy” line) to the box. It was really easy. I did not cover the inside of the box or the little tabs that you can see when the door is open and I think it looks just fine. I stamped “party favors” using the Soda Pop large alpha from Pink Persimmon and the die cut mat is a leftover cutout window from mt Royal Whimsy SVG set.

 

Believe it or not I try to have a healthy household, that’s why for my daughters’ birthday I wanted to give out a party favor that was not candy OR cheap plastic toys that would fall apart before the kids even got them home. I found a box of foil wrapped packets containing a small coloring book, box of crayons and stickers. Eureka! The perfect party favor and it fits in my altered slim jim box!

 

This project took about 15 minutes and I can use it over and over again. I like to make party stuff that I can build on and use again year after year and this box is not too young-looking. One note, you might want to cover the box so you can fill it from the top. I did not think of that until I was done and I had to fill it from the bottom. This would be great done in more neutral colors and could be used to dispense packs of trading/baseball cards! Have a great Sunday and til next time happy crafting!

Feeling Guilty?

Our local library decided to banish overdue book fines, I for one am glad having found the occasional 6 month overdue book under a bed and then doing the mental calculation wondering if it would be cheaper to pay the fine or buy them a new book LOL! So when the librarian asked me if I could make a “guilt jar” I jumped at the chance. You see, this way guilty parties (ahem…like me) could drop in a few bucks to cover our indiscretions and the library still gets the funds it needs for postage. I used a funny disuse guy face from the Slap Happy kit from Letting delights and if you like it I have a 50% off coupon on any purchase over $5: IamBack and I hear they have some new freebies there too!

 

I wrote a little poem to go on the jar because I was afraid nobody would be familiar with the “Guilt Jar” concept. You have my permission to copy it :) If you post a project with it on your blog a link back would be awesome!

 

The pencil background stamp is one I had coveted for years and I snagged it from Lost Coast Designs at the Heirloom Stamp Show in June. It comes in two sizes and This is the large one. I used my Mega Mount to stamp it on fadeless art paper, a curved stamp block will give you a better impression with detailed photo stamps like this. If you don’t have a curved stamp mount try a warped die cutting plate!

That’s all for today, the house has been neglected long enough, it is time for some extreme cleaning…yes I am having people over this weekend…how did you guess? :D Til next time happy crafting!

WOYWW & Gelatoes VS Gel Sticks

Howdy folks! I have no project to share with you today. BUT, since it is What’s on Your Workdesk Wednesday here is a shot of my desk:

 

I have a lot of things started. I went to a crop Friday and scrapped 8 layouts! I might need an embellishment or two on some and I want to photograph them before I put them in my album so there they sit. I have some stamped backgrounds I have been making ready for future cards and I have my Gel Sticks AND Gelatos out. After the tutorial I did on Faber Castell Gel Sticks/Gelatos 2 weeks ago Faber Castell sent me some real Gelatos (look at me with “big girl” supplies) and I decided to try them out next to the less expensive Gel Sticks they also manufacture. They say they are formulated differently, well, they are both lovely products but YOU be the judge. Here in this video I will bust these Gelatos out of the package and try them out side by side with the Gel sticks:

Interesting…Please remember that I am not a chemist or scientist and I have no knowledge of the chemical make-up of either product (although they assure me that both the Gel Sticks and Gelatos are non-toxic) I am judging them on their feel, performance, look and working characteristics.

***Edited to add that I spoke with a lady from Faber Castell and she said that they worked with chemists to improve the gelatos (that were inspired by the kids Gel Sticks) so that they would not fade over time. Also they chose the colors in the gelato line to reflect current color trends. I will add lightfast info as it becomes available.***

Pros to the Gelatos are: More colors: 22 regular shades and 6 metallic. The 4 pack ($10) comes with a brush and clear stamp. (I have more brushes than Carter has pills so it is not a biggie for me-I’m even worse in the stamp department LOL!) I also like how they list the color name on the cap. They are sold in packs color families to coordinate with the other products in the Design Memory Craft line marketed to papercrafters to take the guesswork out of matching.

Cons to the Gelatos: Price. The 2 packs are $3.99, 4 packs (with brush and stamp)are $9.99 and the full 28 pack is $59.95

Pros to the Gel Sticks: They seem every bit as good as the Gelatos. The coverage is great, they are smooth and creamy and they blend well. You can’t beat the price at about $1 each! I bought the 12 pack of regular colors on Amazon for $11 and the 6 metallic for $7. You can get them for less if your local Joanns has them and you use a coupon too!

Cons to the Gel Sticks: Color range. There is only 18 colors and they are not labeled on the tube.

Thanks to Faber Castell for sending me the samples to review. Thanks for stopping by and til next time happy crafting!

DIY Washi Paper Tape {video} & “Best Day” winner!

OK, First, the moment you have been waiting for (drumroll please…) Congrats to Carmen L who won the “Best Day” stamp set from About Art Accents! Woohoo! Carmen, I will email you for your address and I’ll pop that in the mail for you tomorrow.

Speaking of About Art Accents I just got a sampler of beautiful Washi paper from them and let me tell you it would be a crime to cover any portion of that patterned goodness under a layer on a card so I used my Xyron to apply adhesive to the paper then cut it into tape sized strips and used it on this card:

 

This is a votive screen. You place an electric tea light (or safely contained jar votive-we’ve got paper and yarn here, it is a wee bit flammable!) behind the screen and it glows through the vellum panels. Here you can see it with the lights off. The lucky neko cat is from About Art Accents too! It is from this really cute set of kokeshi dolls.

 

I turned almost every pattern I had into washi paper tape, it is so rich in color and pattern:

 

Here is a video showing you exactly how to make it, it is very fun and addicting!

So, what do you think? If you want more ideas I have other tutorials on making your own patterned tape:

Here using sticker paper and stamps and Here using masking tape and gelatoes.

Thanks for stopping by and til next time happy crafting!

Simple Scene Stamping!

Building a picture using only rubber stamps is a lot of fun! Last year I saw these cute sets of stamps from inkadinkado and I could not resist! I hadn’t used them though because I am not that great at scene stamping. So to get over my unease I grabbed some tags and started stamping:

It was really fun and quick, I can’t believe these stamps sat on my shelves uninked so long! Here is the city scape set:

And the Cafe set:

I used my color spritzer tool to add bursts of color to the tag:

They also had a farm set that I wish I bought, oh well, I guess I wait for the next big sale for that one:) Have a great weekend and til next time happy crafting!

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