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I haven't really gone fishing – though I'll be seeing the Pacific and Atlantic Oceans and the Gulf of Mexico while I'm gone! And there may be some fish on a dinner table now and then!
I'm putting my blog on a bit of a vacation while I take my own, visiting family all over the United States Mainland. I'm sure that, while I'm gone, there will be news from Stampin' Up! as they're having their Spring 2017 gatherings during April, and news will be filtering out shortly after that. To keep you up-to-date with that, I'll be posting on my Facebook Page, RobinsCraftRoom. So check things out there – and Like my page! – while I'm gone. To get to my page quickly, just click on the word, Facebook, over at the left.
See you in May!!!
Aloha means many things here in Hawai'i. When I use it to greet you each time I write a blog post here, I mean it as a sense of wishing you an affectionate, "Hello." When people speak of "living the aloha spirit," they are talking about the sense that we should live in peace and with love and compassion.
But today, I'm using it in another way, as I'm saying goodbye to you – but just for a very short time! My husband and I are taking an extended vacation during the month of April to visit family all over the United States mainland, including attending the wedding of one of our nephews in the Washington, D. C., area. Of course I've made a personal card for the bride and groom, and my last post until I return is featuring that card.
When I first saw the Lucky Elephant Stamp Set in the Stampin' Up! 2017 Occasions Catalog, I wondered if it would be appropriate as a card for this wedding, especially as our nephew is marrying a woman of Indian heritage. Surely I'd be able to use it! Then, when my sister-in-law said that the bride was going to be wearing a "stunning gold tunic with a red gown" for the wedding reception, I knew JUST what I was going to do with this elephant – Emboss it in Gold on Real Red Cardstock.
After that, I tried to use all kinds of other gold products in the Stampin' Up! catalogs. But every time I tried to add something such as the Gold Foil Doilies or the Gold Ribbon or Gold Twine, the card just started to look too gaudy. And gaudy wasn't what I wanted. I wanted something simple and, hopefully, elegant. I do think that the final card has that feeling.
The gold embellishments, both the circles on the rug on the back of the elephant and the hearts in the background are from the Metallic Enamel Shapes assortment. After I matted the main stamped layer using Gold Glimmer Paper, I felt that was all I needed.
The sentiment is from another stamp set in the 2017 Occasions Catalog, Beautiful You. I seems to fit right in. There is a bit of fussy cutting work with the rug on the elephant's back. For that, I stamped and embossed just that part of the Elephant stamp on Pacific Point Cardstock. I then cut it out along the outside edge of the elephant stamp and just above the bottom part of the rug. (My first try was to stamp/emboss on Whisper White and then on Very Vanilla Cardstock, and color in the empty spaces with the Pacific Point. After not liking what I ended up with, I had the "duh" moment that led me to stamp/emboss on Pacific Point cardstock itself. Well, duh!
Here are the products I feature in this card. Even though Robin's Craft Room will be on vacation, don't forget that my Stampin' Up! store is open all year, regardless of my personal plans. Just click on any of the pictures below to go to that store, learn more about any of the products, and then buy them if you'd like!
Aloha for a month!
I've been really busy getting ready for a long trip that will begin on April 3rd, and I've not had much time for crafting at all! But I have had some time in my craft room, and this week it's mostly about getting ready for my next newsletter – which will be early for a change. I'm planning to have it ready to e-mail out by Saturday, April 1st.
This Diamond Fold card is one I've been meaning to try out, and I thought it would be a fun project for Springtime. I have written a short tutorial explaining how to make this fairly simply fold and I'll be including it in my upcoming Newsletter. As you can see, you can use any cardstock and/or Designer Series Papers for this card, so you're certainly not limited to those in this sample. But I'll give you all the measurements for all the layers you see here, along with cutting and scoring instructions!
Anyone who signs up for my newsletter will not only get a link to the tutorial for this card, but will also find a link to a darling and quick-to-make gift box for Easter or other Spring treats. So sign up for my newsletter by March 31st! There will be other Stampin' Up! news as well!
Today's blog post is not just about a stamp set. It's also about a fun Sizzix Edgelits Set that goes with it. I definitely haven't heard the word, "edgelit," in a while, and I didn't even realize how this one worked until I got it in my hot little hands last week. The edgelit can be used by itself, but it's really a Blast when it's used the the Birthday Blast Stamp Set!
When I put the shape that the main die in this set cuts out over the starry image from the stamp set, the effect is amazing! Before I go into some hints for making a card like this, I'll share some details about the other parts of the card.
First of all, the colors in this card are both in the 2016-2018 Stampin' Up! In Color set – Emerald Envy and Peekaboo Peach. The greeting is also a part of the Birthday Blast stamp set – it's all in one stamp, so there's no need to stress over lining the two words up. The stars underneath the greeting are from the 2016-2018 Enamel Shapes Set. The final element on the card is the bow made with the Emerald Envy 1/8" Taffeta Ribbon. One of the nice things about showing off a card made with colors in a specific group is that there is usually a set of cardstock that you can buy that includes all the colors in the set. In this case, there's a pack of 8-1/2" x 11" Cardstock that include both of these colors as well as the other 3 colors in this In Color set.
Now about my trial and error in making this card. Die-cutting the top layer is not much of a hassle at all. I cut a piece of cardstock 4-1/2" high and 4-1/4" wide. I stamped "Happy Birthday" so that the top of the stamp is about 2-1/4" – 2-1/2" up from the bottom edge of the cardstock. Then I placed the edgelit across the cardstock, placing it about 1/4" above the top of the greeting and ran it through the Sizzix Big Shot.
I set that aside and went to work on the stamped image. For this part of the project, I cut Whisper White Cardstock 5-1/2" high and 4-1/4" wide. Then I stamped the star blast image so that the top of the arch is about 5/8" from the top of the cardstock.
Finally, I glued the top layer to the stamped layer. I applied adhesive only to the bottom rectangle of the top layer. Then I carefully placed the large center star over the stamped center star and made sure I got the left and right slashes so that they showed through the die-cut slashed leading up to the other two stars. Once I had that arranged, I (again carefully!) laid the lower rectangle down onto the stamped layer, adhering it securely.
What you have at that point may look like a mess! But not to worry. What you want to do is to cut this grouping into a rectangle that's 5" high and 3-3/4" wide. I began cutting the grouping by making sure that the bottom edge was parallel with the greeting on the top layer. Once I had that edge the way I wanted it I used that edge as much guide to cut the other sides, starting with either the left or right side. I made 3 of these cards, and I found that I trimmed them in a different order each time. One time I made sure I had a squared-off rectangle before I worked on getting the whole thing down to size. There are probably as many ways of doing this as cards I would make. But it's really worth the effort – and it's not really that much effort!
When it came to the ribbon, I just tied a small bow and adhered it to the base of the star "blast." But, when I had some of my downline make it in a class I had for them, some of them tied the ribbon around the die-cut base and then tied the bow. I think it looked good either way – whichever you prefer!
Here's a recap of the products I used for this project. Click on any of the photos to get to my Stampin' Up! store to find out more about any of them and even to order them right away! If you have any questions, you can always call me at the phone number shown up near the right top of this page.
Next Saturday I'll be co-hosting a Valentine's Luncheon for one of my service organizations. One of my jobs as the co-host is to make favors for everyone. This isn't a very large group, but it's still enough people that I need something quick and easy to make and that will hold something fun in the way of a treat.
This little box is made just with folds! There's no cutting or gluing to construct the box at all. How simple is that??!!! Of course, you have to use some adhesive to adhere the piece of Sending Love Designer Series Paper from the stack of the same name. But that's it!
The good news is that those on my mailing list get a tutorial for this project! If you're not already on my newsletter mailing list, you'll get a tutorial for making this card when you sign up between now and February 12th of this year. If you are already on the list, you will have received a copy of this tutorial with my early February newsletter earlier today.. I really hope you enjoy it! It's not an original design, but I think my tutorial will make it especially easy for you to make this little darling!
Oh, and my Newsletter Sign-Up form is up at the top left of this page!
Since late last year, I have had a bit less time for my paper crafting, but not because I'm too busy with chores. I've been learning how to crochet a breast prosthesis called a Knitted Knocker. How these got their name is a fun story, but I'll leave it for you to research that online at KnittedKnockers.org. What's more fun for me is that I now am able to make these breast prostheses for women who have had breast cancer and have not had reconstructive surgery. I feel as if I'm really doing something to help with those who have had breast cancer and not just by donating money to research. This was especially true yesterday when I gave a friend my very first completed set of Knitted Knockers (which, in my case, were crocheted, not knitted).
Isn't that a delightful color of blue?! It's a color that my friend picked out from a box of yarn I'd ordered and received just a few weeks ago. No matter where you are around the world making these, they're made with soft yarn and either knitted or crocheted very tightly so that they can be stuffed with polyester fiber fill. The yarn that our group uses is Cascade Ultra Pima 100% cotton yarn. For this set, and for any that I give to someone directly, I stuff them as full as I can and then the person who is going to use them can remove however much she wants to make them comfortable.
The group to which I belong that started making these in our area of East Hawaii not only gives these to friends and neighbors, but also distributes them to oncology and other cancer treatment centers in our area. Those, too, are stuffed and ready to wear, with slight adjustments as needed. The group also sends knitted and crocheted items to the national Knitted Knockers in Bellingham, Washington, because that is where most requests for these are received. But wherever and to whomever we give these, we do not charge one cent for them. So if you, or someone you know, would like to have one or two of these, just get in touch with KnittedKnockers.org, and they'll help you get your order placed.
Of course, my Stampin' Up! stash helped with the packaging of this delivery! That bag is a gusseted cellophane bag from Stampin' Up! And I punched the tag that went with this using the Scalloped Tag Topper Punch. I really can't make anything these days without pulling stuff from the paper-crafting side of my craft room! Click on either of the pictures below to learn more about the products AND to purchase them from my Stampin' Up! store.
Here I am with a different twist on my usual posts – I'm asking YOU for your ideas!
My specific need right now is for a quick and easy favor for a friend to make for a convention that will take place on our island early in the summer. So here's what I am faced with: I don't know what the budget is; I don't know how many volunteer crafters there are or even if they're experienced crafters; but I do know that the favor has to hold something. Oh, but I don't know what it's supposed to hold. Hmmm. The idea, though, is that my friend will present an idea or ideas to a committee next week with a proposed budget and ideas of what could be in the favor.
Here's the first idea I gave her, and I should hear back in a day or two about whether it's what she had in mind. But it would really help if I could give her another idea or two. Yes, I've searched Pinterest, but, outside of having something that holds a glassine or plastic bag with a tag topper, nothing grabbed me except the box that I made.
I made this somewhat origami-style box using two sheets of paper from the Playful Palette Designer Series Paper Stack and Peekaboo Peach 3/8" Ruched Ribbon, both from the Stampin' Up! 2016-2017 Annual Catalog. The sheet for the top is the full 6" square that comes in the Paper Stack. I trimmed the sheet for the bottom to 5-5/8", so the top fits snugly over the bottom. It took me about 9 minutes to make one box, and I estimate the cost of materials to be about $1. That seems reasonable to me. If we have 20 people making boxes for 4 hours, given that we'd certainly spend time chatting and not necessarily be focused on the box making, we could knock out at least 300 boxes in one afternoon.
So – do you have anything comparable that I might try out? If so, please send me an e-mail, and even include a link if you know of any ideas that are shown on the internet!
The past few days, I've been sharing projects that use quite a few new products that are in the brand new TODAY Stampin' Up! 2017 Occasions and Sale-a-bration Catalogs. Now I'd like to share links to the products that I used for these projects so you can learn more about them – and purchase them at my Stampin' Up! Store!
Sunday, January 1, 2017
Monday, January 2, 2017
Tuesday, January 3, 2017
This is the time of the year when everything seems like it's last minute! I've been making Christmas and other Holiday Greeting Cards since the summer, and I've even made a few gifts to give to local friends. But wouldn't you know that I got the bright idea to make favors for those who will be coming to our Duplicate Bridge game on Sunday! Yes, my husband, who is the director of the Hilo Bridge Club, asked if anyone wanted to play bridge on Christmas Day as it's one of the days when we have a regular game. Sure enough, we have 14 people (he and I included) so will have a 3-1/2 table bridge game on Christmas Day. I couldn't go without something festive to put on the tables!
With so much else going on this weekend, I had to do this quickly – and I didn't have much time to get too creative! The good news was that I had two bags of Ghirardelli Chocolate Squares in the house, so little chocolate square holders would be the thing. I found some unused Presents and Pinecones Designer Series Paper in my stash, and, not wanting to take the time to use my Big Shot, I pulled out a couple of punches to decorate the outsides – one old, one new. The Medium Star Punch is in the current Stampin' Up! catalog, but the Tree Punch is retired. There are some punches that I just cannot bear to give up, and the Tree Punch, as well as the retired Word Window Punch, are two of them. I like punches for projects like this because everything goes so much faster!
The inside of the holder is really quick and easy, too. Under normal circumstances I'd have done a bit more decorating, both inside and out. But this will do just fine! See how nicely the Ghirardelli Chocolate Squares fit in the pockets?!
As I'm in a bit of a hurry (last minute Christmas gifts, too!!!), I'll not go into too much more detail. BUT I'll include a tutorial for making this in my next Newsletter, right after the first of the New Year. And, no, it won't be using Christmas papers! It will be for Valentine's Day. It's a FREE TUTORIAL, but you have to be on my newsletter mailing list to get it! Sign up form is up on the left at the top of the page!
Happy Holidays everyone!
I cannot believe it's already Sunday of Thanksgiving weekend! I've had a blast this weekend, starting with a great Thanksgiving Dinner, a workout at the gym on Friday, and a visit to my local scrapbook store for Small Business Saturday (yes, I succumbed to the sales she had!).
So this is my last chance to promote Stampin' Up!'s annual Online Extravaganza! Mostly I've promoted this in my November Newsletter, but I would be remiss in not showing off some of the fun products that are included in this sale. In fact, what I'm showing off today I myself bought as part of the sale. I wasn't ready to buy either product before this, but the sale pushed me over the edge. And am I glad it did! I wish now I'd introduced you to this whole project sooner.
It's the Stitched With Cheer Project Kit and the accompanying Stitched With Cheer Stamp Set.
If you've checked out the project kit in the Stampin' Up! 2016 Holiday Catalog, you might see a few changes in my layouts – but not many! I was determined not to make the exact card shown in the catalog and elsewhere online. But I didn't make as many changes as I'd thought I would. Before I go a bit into each individual card, I thought I'd pass on some of my thoughts about the kit as a whole.
- The kit has SO MUCH STUFF! Yes, you can make all 18 cards that the catalog promises. But there are tons of pieces in the kit that you won't need to make the cards, and you'll be able to use for lots of other cards!
- While the stamp set really does help add to the features on this card, I can easily see using other stamp sets to make these cards just as nice. So if you might be interested in buying just the kit – 40% off!!!! – you can make it without the stamp set. I won't have time to make the substitute cards before the Online Extravaganze is over – but I will do that in the next week or so to demonstrate if you'd let me know you'd like me to do that!
- The sewing is SO SEW EASY! I was hesitant about something that required me to take needle in hand as I long ago gave up counted thread needlework as taking too much time to complete a project. But I'm going to be very happy sending these cards to my old counted thread buddies (yes, we go back to the original Delphi days, continued into AOL forums, and still keep in touch today!) No, they're not hand-stitched ornaments, but they're STITCHED!
- When it came to the stitching, I made things easy on myself, and didn't back-stitch. I made a running stitch forward and then a running stitch backward. It worked just fine with all of the stitching. Don't know what I'm talking about? No worried – just follow the instruction book steps!
First, I used my own 5/8" Burlap Ribbon for the back layer behind the star. I had originally thought to cut notches in the large burlap ribbon that came in the kit. But as I was getting the ribbon out, I found that it was wrapped tight to the point that there were creases across the ribbon, and I wanted. to. do. it. now! I didn't want to wait to spritz the ribbon with some water and lay it out to dry. And I don't know where my iron is (sigh).
Next, I'd already decided to use the Christmas Joy banner stamp in one of the other cards, so I used the Merry & Bright stamp for this card. I also am SO not stamping Holiday Sentiments in black (unless I'm using that fab black/vanilla snowflake pattern in another Designer Series Paper set!). So I used Emerald Envy Classic Ink for this stamp.
First, I was so not seeing the Kraft circle as one that went with this card front. Besides that, since the Holiday Catalog was published, we had a short time where we could order the Stitched Shapes Framelits. What the heck – why not use one of the circles from that set, and mat it with a colorful doily from the 2015-2017 In Color Doilies set – Watermelon Wonder, to be exact. Doesn't that go well with the Mint Macaron color of this card front?!
And then I was being told to stamp in Basic Black again – and I chose the Emerald Envy, which is the same color as the sparkles stamped around the card.
Third, I have a tip for the star stitching: Don't start/stop in one of the points. One of the things you'll want to do with all of the stitching is to tape down the ends at the start and finish. If you're up there in the point, there's really no place to tape. So start in one of the sides or at the bottom of a point.
Finally, I really do not like bumps as thick as the gold half-circles were going to make on the card front – I mail my cards, after all, and I want them to arrive in one piece without a ripped envelope. So I added some of the star-shaped sequins from the Brights Sequins Assortment. But you can certainly use the gold embellishments if you wish.
First of all, both the instructions with the kit and the videos I've watched state to punch through the holes on this card and its trees before stitching. I did that with the first tree, but found that I was stitching as if my needle was looking for the holes. So I saved myself the trouble of poking out holes prior to stitching.
Next, I totally did not like the die-cut shape or the sentiment planned for this kit card. So I chose to use one of the extra (yes, there are extras!) banners and stamped Christmas Joy using Emerald Envy ink NOT black. Why not keep the holiday colors!?
Here's all you really need to make this project (well, add some ink, adhesives, scissors and tape)
And here are some of the other products I mentioned using when I made my own projects from the kit: