Wednesday, March 31, 2010

It's My Birthday and I'll Share If I Want To.....

You would share too, if it happened to you..... 

I don't know where that came from but I've got some sharing to do.  Today is my birthday and I just wanted to show you the wonderful handmade cards and other goodies that I've received from some of my very talented friends.

Carol is my friend from work and she's taken classes with me from my upline.  She always surprises me with her sweet cards.

Marilynn, Dawn, Judi, and Kim are friends from SCS - fellow teapotters.  I don't need to tell you what a talented group of ladies these are.  Every week they amaze me with their teapot cards and more.

Sunshine and I met through our blogs - she lives in New Zealand and takes wonderful pictures as well as making cards.  She made me that cute snowman too.  You know it's going on winter there now.  Hard to grasp.

My SCS friend Sabrina (another wonderful photographer, cardmaker and you'll see soon..... expert needlecrafter) sent me a package from Ireland.  I was so excited when HWNSNBP e-mailed me at work and told me I had a package from Ireland.  Inside was some delicious pig candy (she knows I celebrate Pig Day), a gorgeous card and a mysterious package with the cutest "robin" tag.

Inside the carefully wrapped package was the robin again, but not on paper.  This time he was framed.  She hand-stitched him on fabric.  He took my breath away....

Just look at the detail of the stitching.  Sabrina, you are so very talented!

I know I've highlighted my handmade cards and gifts here, but I am so blessed to have many friends who have wished me a happy birthday in their own special ways.  Thank you to each of you.  It's been a wonderful day. 

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Teapot Tuesday 87

Awww, look at this cute little bunny teapot!  Isn't he adorable?  But, you guessed it, it's not what it seems.....

According to Cindy this is Brutus and Brutus is conflicted.  He doesn't like Easter.  He doesn't like hiding the eggs and delivering the Easter baskets.  He dislikes it so much so that he has taken up behaving like a dog.  Yes. That's right.  A dog!

Our job is to get Brutus back on track.  Afterall the Easter Bunny needs all the help he can get.   How is he going to hide all those eggs and deliver all those baskets all by himself?  He really needs all the help he can get.  He needs Brutus.

But you see Brutus, much like Santa's elf Hermey has another desire.  He has a need to create, not just hide those darn eggs and hop around carrying baskets of jelly beans and plastic grass.  He wants to weave the baskets.  Deep down inside he is a basketweaver.  He has practiced his art secretly using cast-offs that he has found and saved.  You should see his stash.  He's got twine and rope, grass and hay, paper and plastic, pine needles and paper bags.  You name it, he's used it. 

This week he found some scraps in my stamp cave and lucky for me he got busy weaving this wonderful background for me.  Doesn't he look just great up against that background with all those coordinating flowers? 

The other part of this Easter thing that bothers Brutus is that darn pink ribbon.  Well Brutus, if you paid attention at Easter Bunny Helper Orientation you would know that all beginner bunnies wear pink.  Once you finish all your Easter Bunny Helper courses and actually help out for one Easter you get to move on to your yellow ribbon.  Then it's blue, and then white.  So on, so forth, etcetera! 

So now that Brutus has leveled with the Easter Bunny authorities about his real desire I think they'll be asking him to use his weaving talents to help out with Easter.  Yes, he'll still have to workout so he'll be able to heft those jellybeans around, but he's bound to be happier about it now that he can create to his heart's content. 

If you have no idea what I'm talking about you need to visit the Teapot Challenge thread this week to find out the scoop.  Or go take a gander at Cindy's glob.  Either way you're sure to be entertained by some fine fiction and even finer creativity.  Don't miss the gallery either.  (Pssst, if you're reading this on a Tuesday, make sure to come back for the link later in the week when everyone has had a chance to post their cards.)

Oh yes, the details of the card.  Stamps used:  Chocolate Bunny and Whimsical Words.  Ink:  Chocolate Chip and Close to Cocoa.  (The bunny was stamped in Chocolate Chip onto Whisper White cs and then colored with my Close to Cocoa marker.)  The paper strips are from Kaleidoscope and Tea Party dsp, along with So Saffron, Gable Green, Green Galore, Cool Carribean, Pretty in Pink and Lovely Lilac cs.  The flowers were punched with the 3 For You punch, the sentiment from the wide oval, and the grass was a leftover from the Fancy Favor die.  I used the eyelet punch on the dsp for the ruffle around the oval and I filled in the centers of the flowers with chunky glitter.  And lastly the pink taffeta ribbon.

A Walk on the Beach in March

I have to admit that I have never, in my life, taken a walk on the beach in March.  Two weekends ago we had some gorgeous weather for this time of year - 70ยบ.  HWNSNBP and I took a drive to Barnegat on that Friday and stayed overnight at our friend's house.  We all went out to the lighthouse on Saturday morning and had a wonderful walk. 

The sun was warm, the water was calm, and the company was perfect.  We parked the car and took the path to the end where we climbed over the rail and down to the sand.  We walked along, parallel to the inlet and took note of all that had washed up the previous weekend during the storm that devastated many areas.  In fact, we had noticed on our drive to the lighthouse that many of the private beach entrances were unaccessible as the water had pushed the sand up so high as to block most of them.

I am always intrigued by the composition of the shells and flotsam in the sand.  The sun shining on the sand cast shadows as well as illuminated the sand crystals.  We walked and picked shells as we did and were even lucky enough to find some sea glass though I suspect that others before us had done the same.

Here are a couple of pictures of the lighthouse from the water's edge.  Notice the clear azure sky.  It was amazing.

There were boats going in and out of the inlet and fishermen on the rocks.  There were also photographers with some serious photo equipment taking pictures from the rocks on the inlet.  We think they were photographing the birds in the water.  It was interesting to watch some of the diving birds take their dives while we tried to guess where they would come up.  It felt like they were underwater for an eternity.  I only took a few pictures as my camera card is pretty much still filled up with pictures from the Philly Flower Show we attended earlier this month.  I will try to get those posted soon.

From the lighthouse we traveled further south to Tuckerton and the stamp store One Little Spark.  I hope to show you soon something made with the stamps that I bought there.  Then we headed back north on 9 to have lunch.  We ate at a Sonic - the first time for all of us.  It's a drive-in fast food chain that recently has come to New Jersey.  The servers come out to the car on roller skates. 

We spent some time looking at homes and then a quick trip to the $ store, Michael's, and on our way home.   It was kind of a whirlwind 24 hours, but enjoyable nonetheless. 

Saturday, March 27, 2010

White Elephant

Today was the day for the annual rescue squad White Elephant sale.  It was nippy this morning but that didn't deter the crowd from lining up early to get in the doors promptly at 9. 

Once through the door, I bee-lined for the table with dishware looking for bargains.  It was only a matter of minutes before I found my first purchase - a small white basket weave teapot for 50¢, right around the time that my box man (HWNSNBP) showed up with a box.  He had been parking the car.  After I added my find to the box he wandered off and called over to me as he found something he thought I might be interested in.  A lovely white teapot with roses for $4.  I told him to put it in the box. 

Then I found this interesting teapot for $1 that has two different looks depending on the side you're looking at.....

On the other side of the table there was a basket with four cups and saucers and five dessert plates for $3...

As I rounded the corner of that long row of tables, I found myself at a log jam of people.  When I looked down, I saw that I was at the end of the craft table.  Believe me when I say that I had no intention of looking through this stuff because I could have a very profitable white elephant of my own with all the stuff that I've accumulated.  However, this little blue case caught my eye because it had a 25¢ sticker on it.  At quick glance it had someone's sewing scraps inside, but I wasn't really interested in that, just mainly the case.....

Upon closer inspection at home, I found some old zippers which I am going to try to make some jewelry out of, some crewel yarn which I am hoping to find a good home, the strap for the case, an empty wooden spool, some buttons and needles.

There was also a box on that table that had some sewing tools in it for 25¢ each and a bag of buttons that I couldn't resist......

I did pass up a couple of jars and boxes of buttons that years ago would have come home with me, but I need to use what I have instead of just collecting them now.

Down the aisle I went when these little gems caught my eye.  The glass salt cellars were, again, only 25¢ each......

As the box, and basket were filling up fast, I made one more pass by where I had started and found this teapot and cups for $3.....

So, for less than $20 I think it was a pretty good white elephant!

Friday, March 26, 2010

F4A5 - The Great White Way

Today's Free For All Challenge is called The Great White Way, and for this challenge we were to create a card inspired by our favorite Broadway musical.  Do I have a favorite?  Well, I do have a couple of favorites, but let's see if you can guess what this represents.................. (if you click on the picture you can see it close-up)

Need help?  Okay.  We have trees.  Is it A Tree Grows in Brooklyn?  No.  I think that was a play, but I never saw it.

Is it Sunday in the Park with George?  No, although I'm sure you can find trees in the park.

Four trees?  Four seasonal trees.  Four seasons.  Four Seasons! 

Yep, that's right -  the musical is Jersey Boys.  Give yourself a good pat on the back if you figured that one out.

The trees are from A Tree for All Seaons, and the sentiment comes from Season of Friendship.  The trees were stamped in Basic Gray on Whisper White and then colored with my SU markers.  I added blue sky background with my pastels and a Q-Tip although I know you can't really see it in the picture.  I punched them out with a 1 3/8" square punch and then mounted them on Ruby Red cs. 

The card base is Chocolate Chip and the sentiment is stamped in the same color on Carribean Blue cs.  I ran the top portion of the Carribean Blue panel through the Big Shot with a texture folder.  The last touch is the Riding Hood Red striped grosgrain. 

The second part of this challenge was that it had to be an unusual size.  This is 4 x 8 and should fit in a #10 business envelope. 

As a Christmas present to ourselves HWNSNBP gets us tickets to a show to see during the Christmas/New Year break.  A couple of years ago he managed to snag some tickets to Jersey Boys - it had been sold out for a long time.  We still listen to the soundtrack in the car!

Want to see the rest of the challenge cards?  Click here.

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Thursday's Throw Aways - Tip Week

Well there is a throwaway involved, but this is more of a tip because I'm not creating something with it, just using it to help creating something else. 

What you see is the leftover sheet from stamp labels.  It's a glossy paper that you peel the labels off of which is how I got the idea to use them in this way.

I removed all the excess sticker pieces and take my red line tape and lay it out in rows.  I load up the paper and then when I'm doing a project I can just go and cut the paper and tape all at once to the size that I need.  It does help things go a little faster. 

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Cleaning Up

I went up to clean off my workspace yesterday and found some pieces of things and just started playing with them.  Of course I had to add more than what I already had going! 

Started with the lattice (I think it's real name is Trellis, but I kind of like lattice better) and added a solid background behind it.  The background was a leftover piece of Tea Party DSP I had in a box.  The vines were directly stamped to the background paper.  The flowers, leaves and vines are all from Vintage Vogue. I used So Saffron, Pretty in Pink, and Regal Rose for the flowers and Certainly Celery and Glorious Green for the leaves.  The centers were punched with the 1/4 and 1/2 inch circle punches.  Some of the flowers were popped up to give it some depth.

The base is So Saffron and the finishing touch is the pink taffeta ribbon and bow. 

I am sorely in need of some birthday cards.  That's what I will put this aside for. 

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Teapot Reject?

This was my first endeavor for Teapot Tuesday this week.   I went through all the papers in the recyling pile on Sunday morning and pull out all the crossword puzzles so I could make that fluffy flower.  It's really quite easy.  Punch 20 scallop circles.  Use the crop-a-dile to make a while in the center and insert a brad.  Then you just crumple up the layers towards the center one layer at a time. 

The sentiment slides in and out of the black panel.  So what do you think - reject?

Monday, March 22, 2010

Teapot Tuesday 86

Take a look at this splendid teapot.  This is our inspiration for Teapot Tuesday 86.  There's a wonderful story that goes along with it and it can be found on Cindy's glob or at the Teapot Challenge

Christopher Spelling is in a crossword competition and he's stuck.  He's about to win $42,000 but he just can't get that last word. Wouldn't you know the word is TEAPOT!  Crisanne his fiance needs our help to send him some subliminal messages (and maybe some hard hints) to get him to win, win, win. 

So I did some research and yellow is the color that's most likely to help you remember.   So I placed my new yellow teapot on a crossword grid that's hanging out on a checkered yellow background.   Whew!  I hope that helps him remember the word TEAPOT!!!

Let's check out the gallery and see how the other teapotter's are helping.

I used my new Rubbernecker Teatime stamp set that was sent to me by none other than our Teapot Queen herself!!!  Thanks Cindy.

Engagement Birds

A friend at work asked me to make an engagement card for her son and future daughter-in-law.  I had originally planned to make a card similiar to the medallion card I made for the VSN Olympics but I realized that I didn't have a nice envelope that large.  So, on to the next thought. 

The only stamping on this is on the inside (see below).  The base is Very Vanilla with a Finial Press embossed panel of Kraft.  The heart is in Very Vanilla and embossed with the scalloped heart embosslit.  The two birds are punched with the two-step bird punch in shimmery white and the wings and birds are popped up on dimensionals.  The ribbon is Old Olive satin and I used a stickpin, pearls and beads from the pretties kit with a Very Vanilla taffeta bow.

The inside is stamped in Old Olive with a sentiment from In My Thoughts.  The panel was cut using the Top Note Die and then embossed with the flowers. (I stuck it down better after the picture, trust me!)

She loved it and I hope the couple will too!

Friday, March 19, 2010

March Downline Meeting Projects

My upline Debbie called a meeting for last Friday night and at the last minute it became a meeting of just the two of us.  She always comes up with such great projects.  We had fun creating these and gabbing away.  Thanks for the conversation, the pizza, and the creativity Deb!

An easel card with calendar using Totally Tess from the Occasions Mini.  This one went right on my desk at work!

This two-story birdhouse uses two of the mini milk cartons.  You leave one open and insert the other in the top.  And it went right on my counter at work!

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Easter Blessings

Ooops, oh well, you weren't supposed to see this today.  This is a card I did for a workshop this weekend.  We used the new Abundant Hope Easter set from SU and the scalloped corner punch.  The ribbon is from last year's ribbon promotion.  We stamped the flowers in Chocolate Chip and colored with SU markers.  The Kraft cs is really nice to work on with your markers.

Inside I gave them a square of So Saffron to highlight the punched corner and also a So Saffron Top Note cut out for the message page on which they stamped the sentiment from that stamp set.  It was easy enough for even a 10-year-old to do (if only she hadn't taken the pink ink and stamped ALL the other sentiments from the Whimsical Words set ALL over the front of the card!). 

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Happy St. Patrick's Day

The fancy favor die makes a great little bag.  Here it's punched in Green Galore and I added a 1" wide handle.  The front is decorateed with the lattice die.  I punched one each in Glorious Green and Hunter Green and layered them to make a medallion.  The points were trimmed and then the medallion was added to the front of the bag.  The center of the medallion used the SAB Vintage Labels and the shamrock from Year Round Fun (I think) both punched with the scallop circle punch.   (I got this idea from Kay Kalthoff - thanks Kay for your inspiration!)

This box is filled with green things.  Spinach seeds, a box of green jello, Andes Mints, and some green foil wrapped caramels.

Hope you have a greet St. Patty's Day!

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Teapot Tuesday 85

This week's teapot is a hoot!  This is Flat Footed Booby Ruby and to get the whole story you must check out Cindy's glob and see her museum quality work. 

This may seem a little bizarre but it goes with the story, sort of.  Ruby the Flat Footed Booby is looking for some shoes. Some stylin' shoes.  She'd prefer if they weren't green.  So she'll be steppin' out and doing some major shoe shopping and the teapot partyers are going to bring her more shoes to choose. 

Well, while she was out her booby baby Bobbi was being booby babysat by her baba and was very good.  Ruby had found these booby baby slippers that looked liked baby booties which reminded her of her booby baby Bobbi and they were so comfortable she knew they would be perfect to relax in after all that shoe shopping so she bought them. 

Bobbi on the other hand (or should I say foot) hopped into the slipper and refused to get out.  So Ruby, being the good booby mother that she is, made a little nest inside the booty for Bobbi to sleep in. 

You see the shoes that Bobbi is holding in her mouth, well they're part of a memory game that one of the tea partyers made for her. 

So, you're probably wondering how I came up with this story.  I have no idea.  I think the time change had gotten to me!  But I can tell you how I put it together.

I found the shoe pattern on the internet. You can find lot's of shoe patterns if you google "paper shoe pattern".  I chose a baby girl shoe.  I thought the birds on this dsp would be perfect to go along with the stamped bird from the SU set Good Friend.  The shoes are from Year Round Fun II. 

The bird is stamped in Pacific Point on Whisper White cs.  The wings are punched from the 2-step bird punch, outlined with a white prismacolor pencil and layered.  The dots on the tail feathers are hand done with a black marker.  I punched a 1/4" circle in white and added a black brad for the eye.  The beak is stamped in Glorious Green and the shoes are all colored with markers and blender pen.  I added two toothpicks to the back of the bird to get her to stand in the nest material which is just crimped packing material. 

This little shoe, sans bird, would make a cute little baby shower favor filled with some candy don't you think?

Okay, I'm heading over to the teapot gallery to take a look and make some comments - care to join me?

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Thursday's Throw Aways - Coffee Sleeve

Raise your hand if you like coffee.  I like an occasional cup of coffee though I'm more of a tea drinker.  And it definitely has to be decaf.  My particular favorite is Decaf Hazelnut and I usually get it at Wegman's.  Or, I should say, HWNSNBP usually picks it up for me.  Most of the time he forgoes the cup sleeve - being a man you know he would prefer to tough out holding that hot as hades cup.  But not me.  If I'm not wearing gloves, there has to be a cup sleeve. 

Recycling paper coffee cups is out of the question, but not the cup sleeve.  (At least not when you have a blog feature that needs recycling ideas!)   The cup sleeves are usually pretty sturdy and stuffing it back into your purse would probably suffice, but why not make it your own by decorating it.  I've seen some pretty nice ones recently that were made out of fabric, but not having a working sewing machine at this time and having a seemingly unending supply of lovely paper, I chose to use the nice cardboard sleeve that Wegman's provides. 

I gently pried it apart at the seam and used it as a pattern, cut it out of a piece of DSP and glued the DSP onto the original with glue stick.  The seam was reinforced with red sticky tape.  Then with a coordinating patterned paper, I made a flower and used a brad to adhere it to the sleeve.  I also put a patch that consisted of a circle of cardstock over the brad prongs on the inside of the sleeve so the prongs wouldn't accidently puncture a cup.  Wouldn't that be a mess!

These flowers are pretty cool and pretty simple.  They're made with a 12" x 1" strip of dsp punched with the eyelet punch and then run through a paper crimper several times to make it pliable.  Then you take a circle of cardstock (I used a 1 1/2" circle), cover that with red sticky tape and starting at the outer edge, gently gather the paper while attaching it to the circle. 

So now I can keep it in my purse right along side the folded up shopping bag.