Faded Shabby Blogs

28 August 2011

Fabulous at 40

In August I had a couple of different friends who joined me in the Fabulous at 40 phase of life. I won't name names...but I thought I'd share the cards I made for them. For both of these cards, I utilized the new Cricut Art Philosophy cartridge. You're probably getting the idea that I LOVE this cartridge. And I do!

It's getting late, and I've got some laundry to move around (really, the only work involved in the task and yet it always seems so challenging!), so I'll be brief and just show you the pictures. :) Hope you like!

20 August 2011

Key To My Heart Banner

Was it three years ago that CTMH had as its National Scrapbooking Month collection the Key To My Heart papers and stamps? I think so. Which means that for three years, I've been hoarding paper I just love so much. I love the colors (Juniper, Sorbet, Tulip, Creme Brulee - these all played a part in my Renaissance garb too, so don't think I'm a Johnny-Come-Lately to them). I loved the texture.

But I'm trying to Use It Up, as you well know! I'm also trying to be the thoughtful person I'd like to be. You know, the one who sends a little note to a friend just because. Well, my friends are getting a little more than notes these days (when I actually get around to creating something and shipping it!).

My dear friend and first college RA (yes, she is forever my RA), Lisa, is someone I have admired, turned to for support and laughter, and just loved from the first moment. She understood I needed a bit more human connection than my first college roommate was able to give, and she provided that. We had such fun times, gathered in her little RA room with her very romantic ideal bed drapery. She got a book with quirky things written for each day of the year, and we all had a grand time looking up our birthdays and remarking about them. Memories of those days are more vivid than something twenty-some years ago ought to be. And the memories continue to flow: I was a bridesmaid for Lisa, and she was one of the Cornellians who attended my wedding too. I truly feel blessed to call Lisa my friend.

So I thought to make her a banner to adorn her home. It occurred to me well into the project that I've never been to her home in Cedar Rapids, Iowa. I don't even know if there is any wall that can sustain this banner, let alone a window which would display both sides at once. So she might have to take the time to turn it around from time to time. Or it might just be something she looks at once and thinks, "That crazy JuliAnne!" Either way, it was fun to make this and I think it will get a little more action than the latter. Here are some of the photos (I won't bore you with too many). I must apologize, as I took the pictures at night and this rental house really lacks appropriate lighting. I have tried to fix colors and such digitally, but I have failed to make these look high quality. Hope you enjoy them nonetheless:

Did I mention that I cut all these shapes (letters, 3D flowers, other shapes, triangle banner pieces and little flag banner pieces) all with the new CTMH Cricut Art Philosophy cartridge? Well, I did and if you couldn't tell from this, I am LOVING it!! Contact me today to come play...or to snag one of your own!

12 August 2011

Give Away!

I really love it when PDub gives away things on her blog. Let's try a little experiment here on mine.

I can tell you absolutely that I find myself more in need of a little recognition of my efforts than ever before. Perhaps this stems from days when Mr. V tells me, "Don't you remember what a HORRIBLE mother I told you you are?" (this after I have said no to a request, no doubt) or when Ms. V lets me know, "I don't need any help! I can do it myself!"

I sometimes find myself scrolling down my posts to the end to see if anyone has left me any feedback. I get a little giddy when someone has clicked "love it" or even "CASEing it". Because then I know that someone has looked and has taken some time to give me feedback. Thank you, button clickers. I really do appreciate it.

And then, of course, I wonder who might have clicked. Was it someone who knows me or has some random onlooker stumbled on my blog and thought enough of it to read and click?

So today I shall encourage a little commentary on the part of the onlookers. Perhaps even the followers. :) Be so kind as to leave a comment and I will enter you in a drawing (optimistic, aren't I? Oh, to have multiple comments!) for something paper crafted with purpose by me! Thanks in advance for your feedback, critiques, suggestions. I really do appreciate any time you give me!

10 August 2011

Some of My Art Philosophy Fun!

I really have been playing a lot with the Cricut Art Philosophy cartridge and components of its collection for Close To My Heart. My Cricut has not seen this much action in the three years I have owned it! And I'm not likely to stop, especially when Ms. V comes into my craft room, finds one of the 3D flowers I've made with this and coos and goes on about how beautiful it is.

I will admit: I've been making some cards for friends, facebook promises, and have also begun my Use It Up challenge in earnest. I am currently taking all the paper I've been hoarding and the special boxes or other items to find new purpose and am crafting some pieces for an open house I plan to have within the next couple of months. This will be a fund raiser for Operation Smile, as well as terrific way to get me to live up to this challenge: make it for someone else! I will post some of my projects for that as I get closer to the day, as well as information about the open house as it gets closer too. No firm plans.

Actually, all plans are really wobbly right now as we still don't know if there is or is not the opportunity to go to Luxembourg. Whether or not there is, we have moved forward on finding a house and are waiting somewhat less than patiently on news of the paperwork, closing date, and opportunity to move. (Of course, Luxembourg would mean stuff moves into storage and we try to rent our lovely new home to someone else while we are gone!)

But I'm babbling. I'm wont to do this, as many of you know. Right now, I'd like to show you some of the things I've created lately. Product may be new or old. Many use shapes from the Cricut Art Philosophy Collection. Here they are:

Above is the new Roxie paper pack. That ribbon itself did require some "fussy cutting" but there are some awesome shapes that don't. :) Like below:

The bracket card (oh, yes! LOVE these) and the fancy bracket on which "merry christmas" is stamped are our shapes. Even the holly leaves (with coordinating stamps to perfectly fit inside them) are part of the collection. And CTMH hasn't made much fuss over the circles since any Cricut cartridge might have circles. But I measured that holly berry stamp. It was 1/4 inch. So I cut as many as I needed for my swap at 1/4 inch (the smallest setting on the Cricut) and then (hot tip, although it may seem obvious) I left the cut circles on the Cricut cutting mat, put that on my Versamat and stamped the cranberry colored berries while they were stuck to the cutting mat. Because I can see through My Acrylix stamps from Close To My Heart, I could line up the stamp image exactly with the cut circles. No chasing them all over the page. No cutting the circles by hand after the stamping. I embellished the light dot with a Bitty Sparkle to add a little bling to this simple yet festive card.

The bracket shape above is another shape, and the stamp is one that comes as part of the Cricut Art Philosophy Collection with CTMH. I used some of the new Bronze Glitz Glitter Glue to embellish the bottom/side of the card and to mark the occasion for congratulations. It is a simple card too. But I think the unusual shape gives it interest. Having just one element like that makes it a lot more "achievable" to create something hand crafted. Faster. Simpler. Easier. That's the CTMH way!

The cartridge has a ticket tag, but I simply stamped the ticket "Thank You" sentiment on one piece of card stock. I had originally just had the scalloped circle shape on the card. Showed it to my loving husband and he told me it looked like a badge. That wasn't what I was going for. Found the stem with leaves image on the Art Philosophy cartridge, and suddenly my badge became a flower head.  

Despite my just having mentioned utilizing one special shape or effect being sufficient at times, there are also times when a little over the top is what you want. On Facebook earlier this year, I promised to send five people who commented first something handmade at some point throughout the year. This is the third person's something. I made a card box (pattern can be procured from Vicki Wizniuk as a bonus with the purchase of a hand-crafted card by her!) and used a few 3D flowers, two other shapes from the Cricut Art Philosophy, and a whole lot of bling. There are even sparkles inside the flowers. The box itself has two compartments, for cards and envelopes. Once this set of cards is gone, Lisa (my friend and recipient) can keep putting other cards and envelopes in it. Or she can use it for something else. I suspect that she is going to keep this for a bit, because she replied to me that she doesn't know if she'll send any cards for a while and when she does, the person must be extremely worthy. Thanks, Lisa, for such a compliment! But USE them! That's why I sent you CARDS!!

Here is an example of the cards inside the box. Each one had a Bitty Sparkle to dot the "i" in Splendid. Each one had a slight variation on the embellishment on the right. On these cards, unlike the above cards done for my swap, I used Sorbet card stock as an accent color. The Roxie paper pack comes with Smoothie (and Tulip, with accents of Desert Sand and Black). I just don't have a lot of Smoothie on hand. I think both colors look good with this fun zebra B&T paper (its backside is the subtle leopard with Desert Sand base).

Here's another example of the different embellishments on the side. I am literally trying to use up stuff I've been storing for way too long. :) It's a terrific exercise for me. I have loved looking at embellishments, and finally I am just using them with what feels like reckless abandon. It's so much FUN!! Let me know if you feel like coming over to play...

Here's another card frame that can be cut with the Cricut Art Philosophy. Some of the cards are entirely the shape of the bracket, oval, or circle. This one creates a rectangular card and cuts out the bracketed image from the center. I random stamped the leaves and stems from a stamp set and adhered some 3D flowers I had cut with the Cricut and then folded over the paper or card stock before rolling and securing. It takes up less depth but adds a distressed look to the flowers. In some ways, I think it can make them look more like real flowers. I'm playing with folding before the flowers are wound, spritzing with water to make them soft and rolling down edges after the flowers are formed. It's been fun.

With the tag that was cut out of the center of the card shape, I embossed "celebrate" in Cocoa and then sponged Crystal Blue ink all over the piece. (It is the exact piece that came out of the card...a frugal way of utilizing that piece but not having to have it the same color!) I sponged the edges with Desert Sand ink. And then I adhered it to the center of the card with 3D foam tape. Just a little more dimensional play. I thought this was a better way to celebrate my friend's 40th birthday than black balloons or pranks!

Hope you like what you are seeing so far! Let me know if you want to pick up your own collection! Now is a great time...JuliAnne.MyCTMH.com