Tuesday, July 31, 2012

A {New} 30 Second Card Video!

Hello, Friends!

It's time for me to share the newest episode of a 30 Second Card {in Five Minutes!}.  If you are new to these segments, please watch the first episode here.

I do these videos to show that not every creation needs to be a masterpiece.  Sometimes, it's fun just to PLAY!  :)

Can't see the video? Click Here!

The Stamps of Life
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Monday, July 30, 2012

Simple treat bags using eCal and eclips

Hello! Tamara here! If you're like me, you always seem to need a quick treat bag of some sort. I have three kiddos and there is always some sort of party going on. We don't always have time to make 25+ of some time consuming treat bag designs, right? So today I've decided to share a simple treat bag design using your eCal software and Sizzix eclips cutter!

These bags are based on a 'tear open' design that is very popular. You just stitch a bit and then stuff the candy in, then stitched them closed. The recipient tears the packaging to get the goodies. Well, I don't like my stuff all ripped to shreds, lol! So, I decided to make a little 'door' in the back that tears out easily!

I've taken a screen shot to show you how to change the line style in eCal to create the 'perforated' square that tears out. Simply open the 'basic shapes' window and create a square that is 1.25". Change the squares line style in the drop down menu as shown. You'll also need to make a circle that is 4.00".

Now you'll layer the square over the circle as shown above. It's best not to use super thick paper for this, as it won't pull open easily and just rip all the packaging anyways.. Cut as many as you need with your eclips and set aside.

Next you will need to cut thin acetate sheets into circles to layer over the front. Mine are about .30" smaller than the 4" circle. Stitch around the edges a bit leaving an opening just large enough to add in your candy; stitch closed. Emboss your acetate sheets if you'd like to give a fun texture to them.

Then, just embellish and decorate as you'd like! You can leave them simple, or go all out! Wouldn't these be darling as ornament gifts with a string hanging from the back? Yes, I'm thinking Christmas already!

I hope you've enjoyed this tutorial showing you how to make these simple treat bags with eCal and the eclips! It's fun to 'explore' a bit in eCal and see what different things you can do to customize your projects! Happy crafting!



Patterned Paper: October Afternoon- Cakewalk 
Embellishments: October Afternoon- Cakewalk; Candy
Misc.: Acetate sheets
Tools: Sewing machine and thread
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Saturday, July 28, 2012

Eileen Hull Weekend and Give Away

This weekend we are celebrating all things Eileen Hull by partnering with Craftside for a fun giveaway!  There are two different prize packs that are fabulous and contain dies from Eileen's brand new Sweet Treats collection as well as books from Craftside.

Prize pack #1 which is available on the Craftside blog includes Eileen's Candy JarsSweet Treats for You SetSizzix Little Sizzles Mat Board in cream and the Craftside book 1,000 Artists' Books: Exploring the Book as Art.  Craftside is offering three different chances to win on their blog.  Check out their blog for entry details.

Prize pack #2 which is available here on the Sizzix blog includes Eileen's Cupcake Stand with Pennant, Candy Cup, and Labels and Buttons, and the Craftside book Water Paper Paint: Exploring Creativity with Watercolor and Mixed Media.  To enter here on the Sizzix blog, simply leave us a comment below telling us what your favorite Eileen Hull die is (you can see her current collections on our website HERE).  We will select one random winner from the comments received to receive the prize pack.  

Our design team loves Eileen and her dies and wanted to get in on the fun too!  They have joined in by creating some fun projects featuring Eileen's dies.  You can click on each of their names to visit their blogs to learn more about their individual projects.

Don't forget to visit the Craftside blog to enter their giveaway and to also enter here by leaving a comment below telling us what your favorite Eileen Hull die is for a chance to win a prize pack of Eileen's products from Sizzix!  You have until midnight PST August 4, 2012 to leave a comment here.  We will contact the winner by email.
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Friday, July 27, 2012

Imagine Art Journal Pages

Hello Ronda here.  I am so excited to share with you today how to use die-cuts, Textured Impressions, and Texture Fades in your art journals.  I love that I can mix in different techniques using these pieces to create something I totally love.

To start this particular page, I added gesso to my watercolor art journal page. I like to use paper tape or  washi tape on the seams to give them added strength.  I also use this time to add in bits & pieces tissue paper or patterned paper on the background.

Once i have a nice thick coat of gesso, I use a Textured Impression to push into the gesso to give the page some texture.  Here I am using a beautiful one called Blossom, Circle, Leaves, & Diamonds Set.

You can use either the raised impression or the recessed impression to create the texture.  Or even use both sides of the impression template.  Make sure you wash off the gesso immediately from the Textured Impression.

Once I painted the background, I wanted to add in some pops of color.  I used the Pocket Watch Texture Fade with some Fig Magenta Spray ink to add in those pops of color.  You can spray the fades and stamp down on the page to transfer the images.  You can even add a few spritzes of water to reactivate the spray ink and stamp again.

I used a the Dot Matrix & Gridlock Texture fade on some manilla cardstock pieces and then die cut them using the Tattered Florals die.  I absolutely love the combination of these two pieces.

After painting the background, I like to lay out out my shapes to see where I am placing them and to see what color i want to paint them.  I used the Sizzlits Flower Branches and Leaves set to cut some leaves out of newsprint patterned paper.  After seeing it next to the flowers, I knew I needed some color on the tattered florals.

Blue is a nice complement to the yellow-orange background so i painted the tattered flowers in an light aqua color.  It also happens to be my favorite color too! You can add a little or a lot of paint.

After seeing everything in place, i wanted to use some touches of dark brown/black to ground everything together.  I added a few sprinkles of Espresso mists on the background.  I used the Sheet Music texture fade and some archival black ink to stamp on the background of my page.

I am so happy with the completed pages.  I think the die-cuts and texture fades & impressions added the perfect touches to my art journal page.  Break out those pieces you have and use them on your next art journal piece.

Surfaces: Watercolor Journal Page; Manila Cardstock; patterned or tissue paper
Mists: Maya Road Maya Mist- Fig Magenta, Sunflower Yellow, Espresso Brown
Paint: Claudine Hellmuth Studio Paints
Ink: Ranger Ink Jet Black Archival Ink
Gesso: Claudine Hellmuth Studio Gesso
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Thursday, July 26, 2012

A happy accident...

Hi everyone! I hope that you have been enjoying your summer thus far! It's hard to believe that it is half over... I have been trying to enjoy every moment as I know that in only a few short weeks, leaves will begin to turn and dreaded snow is sure to follow (being from Canada... that is a harsh reality!).

My family and I went on vacation to go visit my Dad and step mom on Vancouver Island for a few days and I was blown away at the beautiful view from their deck of the sunset each evening. It is a sight I will never grow bored of. I managed to get some fantastic shots that I wanted to scrapbook and this is one of them! I started with the Authentique Paper "FRESH" Collection Kit of stunning papers and embellishments to create the foundation of my layout. But I couldn't stop there! I am all about incorporating texture and dimension into my designs so out came my Vagabond and a couple of fabulous Sizzix Dies!

I started with the Sizzix "Hanging Sign" die and heavy weight Bazzill Chipboard. I painted the "hanger" with Ranger Snow Cap Paint Dauber. Once dry, I added a touch of "Weathered Wood" Distress Ink with my Foam Blending Tool.

It was then time to paint the sign. I pulled out my "Pool" Paint Dauber, opened it up and took a phone call. OOOOOOPS- big mistake! I had left the cap off and got totally distracted for awhile. My paint was practically dry in the bottle by the time I came back! I was NOT impressed with myself as it was the only one I had. I had to at least try to make it work. I stuck a popsicle stick in to scoop out the virtually dry paint and attached it to my sign die cut.

Well... it worked out okay as the dry paint actually cracked as I was trying to apply it. I was happy that it had a weathered look! I added a touch of Picket Fence Distress Stain over top to tame down the blue paint and VOILA! A very realistic looking sign. Cool, eh? Sometimes those mistakes can become "happy accidents" and this was definitely one of those times! I attached the two pieces together with chain and jump rings before attaching it to my layout with foam squares.

Now I want to share with you another quick trick to add texture and dimension to your projects Using the Sizzix Bigz XL Die- Card, Scallop die. I love to create ruffles on just about everything nowadays it seems! In this case, I actually used a shopping bag (yes, a plastic shopping bag!). I liked the frosted look of it and thought it would look pretty cool on this project.

I started by cutting the bag in one long 5" strip. I folded the bag in half and placed the crease one scallop in from the edge of the die.

Typically, if you were to die cut this card you would have scallops on all four sides.

By only doing the 3 sides, it allowed me to almost double the length of the plastic die cut strip.

Next, I folded the strip nearly in half, lengthwise. I wanted it to overlap slightly.

 I then placed a strip of super strong adhesive to the back of the paper I was creating a ruffle on. I thin "puckered" and "gathered" the scalloped strip while pressing it into the adhesive to secure it in position.

When I flipped the piece over, I now had a great ruffled trim hanging down. I LOVE this technique and use it often! I have created ruffles from tissue paper, crepe paper, fabric, paper bags, the list is endless!

Sometimes looking at your Sizzix Dies with a different set of eyes, you can come up with a completely different use for the shapes you cut that what they were initially intended for. I just love those "happy accidents", don't you?!

So there you have it! A couple of fun techniques to add some fabulous flair to your paper crafting projects! I hope you managed to take a bit of time to enjoy the summer and preserve those memories in your albums and try something new while you are at it.

Have a great summer (what is left of it) and Happy Scrapping!


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