Saturday, October 31, 2009

Happy Halloween

Ghoulish greetings to everyone! We're hosting a party tonight, so today's note is going to be short and sweet because I've still got a loooong list of things to do. (Yep, that's loooong with four O's. LOL! Good thing I've got help, huh!)

But, as you know, Halloween means costumes (I'll show you photos of ours tomorrow)...and this got me wondering about what YOU have dressed up as? Let's do some BLOG CANDY, too! No tricks on this one, only treats. Just leave a note in the comments section of this post telling me about your favorite costume you've worn in years past (or will be wearing today). I'll accept entries until Monday, November 2nd, at midnight Central time. Two winners will be randomly chosen on Tuesday morning, and each person will receive one 10918MC Gobbles Turkey Clear Stamp Set:

Remember, if you post anonymously (in other words, without signing in), be sure to add your name or we won't be able to include you in our drawing. It will be the winners' responsibility to contact me via email no later than November 6th. If we don't hear from the winners, we won't be re-drawing...so please remember to come back and check. Good luck!

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Clear Stamp Set Organizer

Next month, we're having a great clearance sale on our discontinued alphabet clear stamp sets. I started working on that website page this morning, and I got a little sidetracked...which resulted in a project I thought I'd share with you!

As I pulled out my sets from my messy supply drawer, I realized I needed a way to organize them better. So I pulled out some Clear Cardstock, cut them into eight 5 1/2" x 8 1/2" pieces, and punched them on the long edge with the CarlaCraft Binding System:


Then I cut two sheets of blue cardstock, added some patterned paper for the front cover, and punched those:


I decided to add a ribbon closure, so I placed red-lined tape across the front cover:


And I put my ribbon over it. Since the ribbon overlapped one of the binding holes, I used a 1/8" punch so I'd be able to run the coil through it:


After assembling the pages and covers and inserting an 18mm Olive Green coil, I trimmed the coil and crimped it with my pliers. I decorated the cover with 10633J Creative Stamper that had been cut with a Nestabilities Labels Large die:


Here's how the inside looked once I filled the pages with my clear sets:


Seven sets fit comfortably in this organizer. I used the eighth clear cardstock page as a protector for the first set so it wouldn't rub against the paper cover.

Using the 8 mm or 9mm coils, I think this would make a cute presentation for giving a clear set or two as a gift. (Can you believe the holidays are just around the corner!) Or you could make one for yourself with the jumbo coil to hold LOTS of sets. (Maybe all the ones you receive for Christmas, LOL!)

Now I'd better get back to my original task, huh? Details on that clear set sale will be posted online Sunday, so keep your eyes peeled!

Monday, October 26, 2009

Gift Certificate Book

My girlfriend's birthday is coming up, and I thought it would be fun to give her a little booklet of coupons that she can redeem for "chick flick" night, dinner at her favorite restaurant, a pedicure, and other fun activities we can do together.

I stamped and colored 6519L Gift Certificate onto white cardstock several times and decorated each with an image from Med. Cube 10315 Sweet Delights. Then I trimmed them to measure 3" x 5 1/8". For the covers, I cut one 3" x 5 1/8" piece and one 3" x 5 3/4" piece from Darcie's PAC1075 Pastel/Brown Stripes printed cardstock.

On the longer cover piece, I used my Scor-It Board to score at the 5 1/8" and 5 1/4" marks. Then I bound the certificates and covers with the CarlaCraft Binding System and an 8mm white coil. Finally, I folded the scored flap around the right side of the booklet and added a pair of Basic Grey Magnetic Snaps to hold it closed:


I decorated the front cover with 0034G Cake Slice Monkey, which was cut out with a circle Nestabilities die and layered onto the coordinating scalloped circle:


And there you go...instant homemade birthday gift!

Thursday, October 22, 2009

New AGW Website

I'm excited to announce that we've launched a brand NEW website for Art Gone Wild!, one of our sister companies:


Please stop over to check out all the stamps and other products, along with a ton of samples. I especially like the Simple Circles clear stamp sets, which are really innovative and unlike anything I've ever seen. You can use them on their own:


Or combine them with the Clever Cutts Layered Circle Card Template and Starter Kit to make wonderfully unique projects:



Happy browsing and shopping...and please let us know what you think!

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Another Box In A Bag

One of the classes I'm teaching at the One of a Kind convention in Madison next month is called Double Slider Box & More. (Registration is still open, by the way, in case you're interested in taking this...I'd love to have you join us!)

This class includes materials for the Box in a Bag as a bonus make-at-home project:


I like this project and the two others so much that I've made a new set to reflect an all-occasion theme, which I'll be offering as a class at several of the shows we attend in 2010. Here's the revised bag, created with 0780F Turtle's Flowers and Darcie's PA1146 Sherbet Polka Pink printed paper:


I'd originally posted instructions back in January for making a Valentine version:


I'm not sure why, but I get a kick out of seeing different takes on the same project. I think it's neat how the same thing looks completely fresh just by changing up the stamp images and papers!

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Dimensional Candy Card

Yesterday I designed the projects for December's display board, which is a special store program we offer that I'd first told you about last month. I especially like how this one turned out:


The stamp image is 0696F Fido & Fluffy's Heart, and the saying is a new one that hasn't yet been released. I used Darcie's printed cardstock in PAC1328 Verona and WorldWin ColorMates in Light Berry Red.

This unique card features a pull-up goodie bag. I taped Clear Cardstock behind the cut-out heart to make a window, and the ribbons were stapled onto the bag with a Tiny Attacher:


Below is a close-up view from the top of the card. You can see how I layered foam tape along the sides and made a "bag stopper" halfway down the inside:


I didn't cover the edges of the foam tape with anything, but you could use ribbon or even shimmer chalks for a more finished appearance. I think the next time I make this, I'll substitute mini M&Ms...mmm, chocolate!

Thursday, October 15, 2009

More SSAT Blog Candy

There are new project ideas posted on the StampScrapArtTour blog, along with some HOLIDAY BLOG CANDY. Head on over to sign up, and you just may be one of the three lucky winners of a stamp and tag prize set. Good luck!

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Sprinkled With Love

We watched a DVD movie the other night, and Steve had ice cream. (Never mind that it's 40 degrees here and it snowed this week...he says that any time is ice cream time!) That got me thinking about our 1 1/2" round aluminum tins. Wouldn't they be cute filled with ice cream toppings to give as a gift? So I rummaged around in my pantry for some sprinkles and chocolate chips:


Then I attached ribbon to the sides of the tins with red-lined tape:


I set those aside and cut a 6 1/2" x 7" piece of clear cardstock to make a box that would hold the tins. On the 6 1/2" side, I used my Scor-It Board to score at 1", 2 3/4", 3 3/4", and 5 1/2":


The blue solid lines show where I cut into the scored marks:


I used StazOn Opaque Ink in Blush Pink to stamp 0670D Solid Heart Background repeatedly:


Then I placed my red-lined tape where indicated in the same diagram from above:


I folded up the box along the score lines, peeled off the release strips on the red-lined tape, and adhered the box together:


After putting the tins inside and tucking in the box flaps (which can be trimmed a bit so they fit in more easily), I was ready to finish decorating my box. I stamped the sundae from Med. Cube 10315 Sweet Delights and 10256D Sprinkled With Love onto scrap white cardstock. The sundae was colored with Prismacolor Pencils and blended with Gamsol.

The image was cut with a circles Nestabilities die, and I cut out the saying free-form with scissors. Then I layered the image with a Nesties scalloped circle die cut from scrap pink cardstock. Again, I cut the matting for the saying tag by hand. Finally, I added a brad to the saying tag and adhered both pieces to the top of the box:


If you'd like to download a PDF copy of the instructions, you can do that by clicking here.

I think this would be a fun project for bath confetti (available here and here) to make a little spa set. Or mini M&Ms to give as party favors. Each tin holds approximately one tablespoon of "stuff." What ideas can you think of?

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Sorting Paper

Neither of us felt very energetic today, so we had a pretty quiet Sunday. But I did get my paper stash cleaned up and rearranged (with Steve's help, which was very nice). Now all the colors are in order:


Don't they look pretty? And I know this is going to save me lots of time as I work on future projects. Now if I could just get up the energy to do the same with the other two cabinets and three drawers, I'd be all set...LOL!

Did you have a weekend project that you accomplished? If so, I'd love to hear about it!

Friday, October 9, 2009

Clear Envelope Photo/Card Book

The other day, I was telling my dad about how Steve & I are planning our 2nd annual Halloween party. He asked if I'd take some pictures and send them to him after the event. That got me thinking...why don't I whip up a little photo album that I can put them into? So I did!

I pulled out my pack of Clear Envelopes and cut 1 1/2" x 5 7/8" pieces of patterned cardstock to make reinforced edges for them:


After pulling the self-stick release strip, I adhered my patterned piece along the edge of the first envelope:


Then I turned the envelope over and put adhesive on the back of my second patterned piece, so I could stick that on the reverse side:


I punched holes into the double-reinforced edge with the CarlaCraft Binding System:


Once I had prepared several envelope sleeves, I set them aside. Then I colored 0210J Me 'n Frank using Prismacolor Pencils and blended it with Gamsol. Since some of the areas had a lot of white space to fill, I added a light layer of color in the center of the image in addition to my darker lines around the edges before blending:


I cut four pieces of brown cardstock measuring 5 7/8" x 5 7/8" and glued them together to make two double-ply covers. After punching holes into them, I decorated the front cover with patterned cardstock, ribbon, and my stamped image. Then I put the photo pages in between the covers and assembled the book with a 9mm CarlaCraft Coil in Olive Green:


I slipped a couple of photos from last year's party into the first two pages and glued 3/4" x 5 7/8" pieces of white cardstock on the reinforced edges so I could write photo captions:


The rest of the book is empty for now...but it won't be long before I'm ready to fill it up and send this project on its way!

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Crazy For Coupons & Samples

Over the past couple of years, I've become a self-proclaimed Coupon Queen. Last night I went to the grocery store and saved 40% off our total bill, just by doing a little research and clipping. It really helps stretch our budget, and I find it rewarding to see those pennies really add up.

I've also turned into a Free Sample Junkie. I have received all kinds of trial size (and sometimes even full size) items by filling out online forms. It's fun getting little surprises in the mail!

For example, here's one I signed up for today after reading this post on the Common Sense With Money blog:


It's through S.C. Johnson's Right@Home website, so it's legitimate and I don't worry about sharing my address with them. And below is a coupon/rebate combination I'll be doing this week so I can nab some candles for free:


You can find a post about this on the same blog here. What a deal, huh? That leaves more money for stamps and accessories...yay!

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Vikings Triumph

I'm not really a big sports fan (hah, that's actually a real understatement...although I didn't ask what inning it was like one of my girlfriends did during last night's football game, LOL). But I have to admit that I was pleased when the Minnesota Vikings defeated the Green Bay Packers. Maybe that's because both of Steve's brothers-in-law are from Wisconsin and always tout the virtues of the green and gold. I just have to laugh when they all razz each other about their teams.

We watched the game at a friend's house. (Well, okay...Steve watched and I glanced at the TV from time to time, in between yakking with the ladies about other stuff.) Of course, that meant a food-making opportunity for me! I decided to try this recipe, which looked very "guy friendly" to me:

And it was. I liked it okay, but Steve practically swooned over it, and he said he would definitely request it again. I found the original recipe and above photo on Allrecipes.com, and my adapted version is posted below.

Buffalo Chicken Dip

1 rotisserie chicken
2 8-oz. packages cream cheese, softened
1 cup blue cheese dressing
3/4 cup pepper sauce (such as Frank's Red Hot®)

1 bunch celery, washed and cut into 4-inch pieces
1 8-oz. box chicken-flavored crackers

Remove and shred white meat from rotisserie chicken, reserving remainder of chicken for another use. Heat chicken and hot sauce in a skillet over medium heat, until heated through. Stir in cream cheese and blue cheese dressing. Cook, stirring until well blended and warm. Transfer the mixture to a slow cooker, and cook on low setting until hot and bubbly. Serve with celery sticks and crackers.

Thursday, October 1, 2009

On The Road Again

I was planning to write this entry from Ted and Michelle's house tonight. Jan and I are staying with them this weekend for the Strongsville convention. However, I received notification this afternoon that our flight had been cancelled due to inclement weather. We've been rebooked to leave tomorrow morning, so now I'm posting from home.

Looks like we'll be scurrying to get the booths set up in time, but I'm sure it will all come together in the end. Sometimes we run into these kinds of glitches. A few are bigger problems, such as rescheduled flights. Others aren't so bad...just small blips that add a few extra minutes onto the day. For instance, Lee's daughter Cheri had a little mishap with the Distress Crackle Paint rack at the Westminster show last month:


She dropped it by mistake, and half the paint jars fell out. I think they were only smiling because Cheri told her 13-year-old daughter, Coretta, that she'd pay her five bucks to put it back into order:


Meanwhile, Cindi was busy pre-arranging the Tim Holtz Cling Mount Stamp Sets for the Stampers Anonymous booth:


She was super thrilled (not) that I took her picture. Oops, I think that was a warning look for me to move on:


Ted and Joyce didn't mind my paparazzi mood, though:


But soon they were back to work on the Darcie's booth:


It's quite a production to get all our booths ready, and it often takes up to 12 hours. But the shows aren't all just about grueling labor, LOL. You never know what will happen...you may see a cocker spaniel driving a car (or parked outside a restaurant, if you want to know what really happened here):


Or Darcie might have yet another birthday in the same year (yup, she was ecstatic about this unexpected event, which was thoughtfully arranged by Ted):


Or you could view the beautiful autumn leaves on your drive home (albeit through the dirty windshield of the big truck):


Maybe have a chance to spot Groundhog Phil:


Or not, ha ha! But it's always an adventure, and I'm sure I'll have more stories to share with you in the future as our stamping journey continues. See you on Monday after I return, and hope you have a great weekend!