Friday, July 31, 2009

It's my Blogiversary -- time for blog candy!

Wow, I just realized that July marks my two-year "blogiversary," so I thought before the month is over I'd better do something to mark the occasion! Blogging -- both keeping up my own blog and hopping around to so many others -- has really become an important part of my life, and I'm so grateful for all the friends I've made because of it. I'm also coming up on 50,000 hits, so we've got all sorts of things to celebrate. So to create a fun-for-everyone type of party, I'm offering a pick-your-prize blog candy!

Option 1: Scrap goodies, of course! I've got a little prize pack together with some cute stamps, chipboard letters, and a whole slew of flowers and embellishments. Ooh, and a zig glue pen, which is a must have for gluing small bits.

Option 2: a $25 gift certificate to my etsy shop. If you're a Sure Cuts a Lot user, this is the prize for you! I have a ton of cute, completely original cut files perfect for use with your Cricut and SCAL. I also have some adorable fabric flower accessories and very unique wooden snowflake Christmas ornaments (those will be up by the end of August).

Option 3: If you're not a paper-crafter at all, I've included this option so you don't feel left out. With this option I'll send you 10 of my favorite handmade cards for your own personal card supply, or you can make your mom or grandma very happy by giving them as a gift. :)

All you have to do to enter this drawing is leave a comment telling me which prize you'd prefer, and if you have a blog, leave a link to where you've posted about the blog candy (you can also post to Facebook or Twitter). This blog candy offering will run for the next two weeks (until August 15th), and I'll pick a random commenter to win the prize! Thank you very much to all you wonderful friends in the blogosphere!

I (heart) vintage...

Well, I'm realizing I'm a total geek for vintage! I love all the vintage-with-a-modern-twist elements that are so fashionable right now. As I mentioned a couple weeks ago, I have totally fallen in love with vintage hot air balloons, so of course I had to design some cut files so I could cut some out with my Cricut! This is one of the fancier versions, and I love how it turned out. (I think if I had it to do over I would have made the balloon a little bigger on this card, but I found these scraps in my drawer and they were pleading with me to be used for this card, so I was a little restricted on size...) I used this week's sketch from 2 Sketches 4 You. The PP is from Chatterbox, and I used scallop scissors for the smaller rows in the middle and the SU scallop-edge punch for the borders top and bottom. I think a little stitching is always a perfect touch for a vintage look, as well. The sentiment stamp is also from SU. TFL!

P.S. If you're a SCAL fan, the files for my vintage hot air balloons are available in my etsy shop.

Thursday, July 30, 2009

Blog hoppin' fun

Well, I've been so honored to receive a few different blog awards over the past couple of weeks, but I've been terribly slow about getting them posted here. Life just gets so crazy, doesn't it? But here they are, and I hope you take a few minutes to check out these other bloggers -- there is so much amazing creativity out there!

The first one I received was from my awesome friend Amy. This blog hop asks you to post your first scrapbook page, share what you were feeling at the time, and pass it on to 5 others.

I think this is my first official scrapbook page -- I had gone to a Creative Memories party for my cousin who was starting as a rep with them, so I probably did a page there that has disappeared somewhere, but then I went to Roberts to check things out and totally fell in love with the wall of patterned paper. I had just come back from study abroad in London, so I got a big stack of patterned paper and my big stack of pictures and went to town. I was big on the shaped pictures and cutting out the backgrounds of everything. I did all the lettering by hand (I was so bummed when the title on this pretty silver paper smudged). I think I was mostly feeling excited when I did this -- a whole new world was opening up for me!

Okay, for this one I'd like to nominate:

This second award was from the amazingly talented Diane. If you own a Cricut and you haven't checked out Diane, you reeeeeeeeealllllyyyyy should -- that woman is totally amazing with Design Studio. For this one I need to tell a few things about myself, so hmmmm... trying to think of something you don't all already know. I love music and singing, and I LOVE to sing. I don't get much of an opportunity to do it nowadays, but I sing to my kids all the time and I hope they inherit my love (and talent) for it. I love all kinds of different music, but I really love accoustic folk-sy type rock. I really wish I could dance, but I'm terribly uncoordinated. My hubby is an excellent ballroom dancer and I would LOVE to be able to keep up with him on the floor. Let's see, one more thing... I love to cook and I'm starting to get adventurous with making up my own recipes. I think I've been watching too much Food Network -- the biggest clue was when I heard my 3-year-old yell from another room "3-2-1, time's up! Step away!"

This last award really makes me feel all warm and fuzzy. Thanks for including me in your circle of friends, Lisa! I love love love all my scrapbooking friends I've found during the past few years. I've learned so much from each of them -- I know I'd still be stuck in the same-old, same-old rut I'd fallen into, thinking I was alone in the scrapping world, without my wonderful scrapbooking friends. Thanks for everything, y'all!

Okay, I couldn't decide who to nominate for what, because I really wanted to see all these people's first pages AND learn some random things about them AND let them know they are important in my circle of friends, so I thought I would just list some of my most amazing scrapping/blogging friends and let you decide which one you want to pass on. Is that dumb? Oh, well!

Carol -- love the happiness and fun I always feel from your cards and layouts
Sonja -- we've been through lots together and I always feel like you are there for me, for inspiration and for friendship
Jason -- one of the brave, the few, the male scrappers -- I love your unique style!
Brittany-- You are so fun and bright and always make me laugh
Tonya -- I love chatting with you about our girls, and you always make me feel so great about myself! Your cards and projects are always great and get better all the time!
Lori -- girl, what would I do without you? I look forward to every time I get to see you. Your projects always blow me away -- you have such a creative approach to the world and think of things I would never have thought of in a million years.

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

More cards for cakes!

My sister who made the gorgeous cake last week has decided to make a side business of it, and things are already going like gang-busters! We loved the cake/card connection so much that we've decided to team up, and I'll be offering coordinating paper crafts to her cake clients -- invitations, cards, party decor, favors, all that sort of good stuff. I decided to make a few projects to go along with some of her other cakes, just so she'd have some examples to show prospective clients.

Here is another totally gorgeous cake she made:

And I made this invite and gift bag to go along with it:

I used my Cricut and Plantin Schoolbook to create the gift bag, George for the shapes and letters, and Celebrations for the party hats.

Amy also made this completely lovely cake after being inspired by this mini-album I made last year:

So I made this cute card/favor combo to go with it:

These use the same Crate Paper combo as I used for the journal. I used my Cricut and the New Arrival cartridge for the "sweet pea" word and image, Mini-Monos for the scalloped circle, and TBBM for the little favor box. I also used a Martha Stewart hydrangea punch for the flowers on the box, and the Stampin Up scallop punch for the brown border on the card.

I'm so proud of my sister for finding something she has a gift for and just going for it -- she's a great example to me of being willing to take risks and try new things.

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Completely amazing!

My amazing, creative sisters Amy and Ange had a surprise for me at family dinner this evening -- they'd been experimenting with decorating cakes, and used a couple of my favorite cards as their inspiration. I was so touched that they did that, and the cakes are abso-freaking-lutely amazing. These pictures hardly do them justice, but I knew I had to post them for all to see!

This is the first one, created by my baby sister Ange:

It's based on this card, which I originally made for my dad to give my Mom for Valentine's Day.

This completely amazing piece of culinary art was created by my sister Amy.

It was based on this card, which I made for my sister Emily's birthday last year. I am SO in love with all the details she captured -- I felt like crying when we cut it up and ate it!

Here's me with my amazing sisters! Thanks, ladies -- I don't think you even know how much it means to me!

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Up, up, and away!

Lately I have been so drawn to images of things that fly, so it's little wonder that they're showing up in my cards! I created this first card for this week's sketch at 2 Sketches 4 You. I really love this sketch; my wheels started turning immediately with different ideas for how to use it. I just loved the image of this whimsical birdie bringing a bunch of balloons. The fun, vibrant paper is from We R Memory Keepers. The birdie and label shape are cut with the Cricut Home Decor cartridge at 2" and 1 1/2" respectively, and the balloons were cut with the George cartridge at 1" and 1 1/4". The scallop edge was done with the Fiskars Threading Water punch. The stamp is from Imaginisce, and the balloon string waxy flax.

This second card showcases the first in a series of vintage hot air balloons I'm designing to cut with Sure Cuts a Lot. I saw some vintage hot air balloon stamps used on someone's blog and they totally inspired me, so I spent some time searching google images looking at all the fun vintage hot air balloon shapes. So keep an eye out, because I'll have the collection listed in my Etsy shop within the next week or so. Inside the card it says "I really needed the lift!" I like this particular card because it's fun and totally appropriate for a man or woman (can never have too many of them, am I right?).

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

A pretty little birthday card

I've had these supplies sitting patiently in my stash since February, just waiting for me to have a brainwave about how to use them. I know all you paper-crafters have supplies like that hanging around! But when I was looking for some pretty, ladylike, happy supplies to create a birthday card for my Grandma (who answers that description herself), I knew these were just the ticket. Everything here is from Stampin' Up. Thanks for looking!

Sunday, July 12, 2009

An explosion of color!

I decided to try my hand at the Mojo Monday contest this week, and wow, using this paper collection really created an explosion of color and pattern. So fun! I was also thinking about the current contest over at the fabulous Bitten By The Bug blog and decided to give it a go, so I chose a summery theme and created my sun with yellow buttons. The pp is from SEI, and the little buttons for the sun are mounted on a clear acrylic circle. I cut the tag and the S with my cricut (TBBM and MM cartridges, respectively). I cut the little gift bag with TBBM (love the bigger size with my new Expression!). I think this little set will be perfect for my cute little cousin turning 12!

Here's a close-up of that cute sun:


Saturday, July 4, 2009

For the Birthday Queen!

My fabulous sister Amy's birthday was this week, and this card is for her! I had a lot of fun playing with trim from the clearance rack at Walmart, glitter, and my new Home Decor cartridge for my Cricut (for the crown). I loved the sketch from 2 Sketches 4 You this week. It's the last week of the card showdown and you have got to check out the finalists' cards -- totally amazing and inspiring!

The pp is from Kaiser Scrapbook, and I cut the big A with SCAL, using Fontleroy Brown. TFL!