Monday, December 7, 2009

Be Merry Banner

I made a super cute holiday banner to hang on my fireplace this year... So much fun to make, and yet again... another project where I made a ginormous mess and covered myself with glitter!

To make this I used leftover cardstock from my paper chain project (so it would match!), white cardstock, glitter, 3-D dots, glue, ribbon, a sharpie, scallop edge scissors, and some sheets of scrapbooking paper (that I painstakingly took FOREVER picking out at the craft store, only to cut it up into little letters where you can't see the pattern anyway... HAHA yup! Go me!)

I traced circles of two different sizes, and used the shaped scissors to cut the larger circle. I covered the white paper with glue and glitter (in my "I need instant results" manner, I used a quick dry glue... Next time I would just suck it up and wait for the regular glue to dry. I wasn't quick enough with the glittering, so the paper is only half as sparkly as I hoped!!)

The letters I drew freehand, cut them out, and traced them with a black sharpie. The "spacer" in between the words is a tree covered with glitter. I used 3-D glue dots to make the letters and the white circles pop a bit.

My living room is kind of dark, so it was tough to get a good photo.. It looks so much better in person! Make one, and you'll see ;)

Stay Crafty! :)

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Paper Snowflakes and Glittery Pinecones

I thought it might be fun to get a whole bunch of random art supplies and have my son craft some stuff with me. Glue, pom poms, pipe cleaners, tons of glitter, popsicle sticks... You name it! We ended up making a huge mess, and eventually he went off to play while I continued covering myself with white glue and glitter lol

It has been so many years since I made paper snowflakes, I didn't remember how to do it! (sad) This is reason #3482 that the internet is your friend... I found this great sight that teaches you how to make some cool snowflakes... Check it out!!

My son had a little trouble with the scissors, so I started making some and let him decorate them any way he wanted. Pom poms and glitter were the tools of choice ;) He had a blast doing this!
You may also notice that my snowflakes look in no way like the nice ones on the website... I didn't really get the hang of until later, when I started practicing after my son went to bed! haha!

We had also collected some pine cones from our yard (before we had all of this snow!), in the hopes of making some glittery pinecone ornaments to give as gifts. Although our yard has about fifty pine trees in it, they only seem to be the kind that produce tiny pinecones! Turns out, they look just as pretty as the big ones with ice flake, sparkling white, and lime green glitter on them! (They are still waiting to be turned into something giftable...)

What do you like to make with your kids? Any cute ideas for holiday gifts? Please share!
Stay Crafty!

Saturday, December 5, 2009

Chocolate-Peppermint Sticks YUM! YUM!

Today I made some SUPER easy and DELICIOUS holiday treats!! I even enlisted the help of my husband, who admits he had fun making them! (Then, of course, we had more fun eating them!)

You need:
pretzel rods
chocolate chips (We used milk chocolate, but white or dark would be delicious!)
candy canes
wax paper
hammer, rolling pin, or back end of a maglite flashlight!(Guess which one we used!?)
plastic baggy
spoons and dish

This whole process went really fast and was so easy with two people. I got excited and started melting the chocolate before I had anything else set up (insert help from husband HERE!)... I'm sure it would go fine with one person if you set everything else up for yourself beforehand!

Lay out a sheet of wax paper on the table.
To crush the candy canes, put them in a sealed baggy (take alot of the air out) and put it on a hard surface. Break the candy canes with the rolling pin... Try not to pulverize the candy! It looks prettier (I think) when its in small chips. P.S: This step is extremely satisfying!!! haha
Put the crushed candies on a dish and set aside.

I melted the chocolate chips easily in the microwave... In a container, do one minute at a time... take it out and stir in between until completely melted.

Dip a pretzel rod in the chocolate and use a spoon to spread it out about halfway down the rod. Try not to make it too goopy, or too thin!

Bring the chocolatey pretzel over to the crushed candy dish, and (I used a spoon) sprinkle the candies all around the pretzel.

Lay the finished treat on the wax paper to harden. There's no need to refrigerate. They harden in just a few minutes (yay!).... This certainly isn't a new concept but it so fast and easy... and it looks like a gourmet treat! (especially if you use really GOOD chocolate!!) Try it with crushed nuts, dried fruit, jimmies/sprinkles, other crushed candies (butterfinger?? MMM! I'm trying that next!!)

We had some left over melted chocolate, so I spooned the rest in one-two inch circles on the wax paper. We sprinkled the rest of the crushed candy canes onto the circles and let them harden! Little choco-peppermint candies!! When they are hard, they peel right off the wax paper.

These would be great to put in pretty packaging and give as little gifts... I know I'm doing it this year! Yum! :)


Stay crafty! Enjoy ;)

Paper Chain Garland

It took me about thirty minutes to decide on the perfect package of cardstock for this project!! The paper crafting supplies at Michael's are sooo much cooler than when I worked there, what seems like ages ago.... I would have spent my paycheck on paper!!!
Making this chain took no time at all! I cut the sheets into strips (three sheets at a time), and glued them with a glue stick! That's it!!

It looks so cute! I LOVE IT!!! :)

Monday, November 23, 2009

Meeting Rosemary Wells at the Eric Carle Museum! 11.22.09

On Sunday, my son and I traveled about an hour and a half to Amherst, MA to the Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art. We went to meet Rosemary Wells, author and illustrator of tons of kids books (such as Max and Ruby! My son's favorite!!) It was a really great day, and I am a HUGE fan of this museum!!

Rosemary Wells was there to give a talk and celebrate 30 years of Max and Ruby (amazing!)... We headed into the spacious and colorful art studio where everyone was encouraged to make a party hat for the "bunny party"! (My son was a little disappointed there was no cake... but there were decorations and balloons! haha)

It is incredibly fun to sit down with a bunch of brightly colored scrap paper and ribbons, and all sorts of other odds and ends, and make whatever you want out of it! "Grown-ups" don't get to do this often enough!!!

So, we made our hats...

Then we modeled them:

Next it was over to the auditorium where we sat and listened to Mrs. Wells give a talk about her artistic process. She showed some slides of her studio and artwork... and even her favorite paints and supplies. This part was especially enjoyable for me, because she also works alot with watercolors, as I do, and it was fun to hear her naming her favorite colors to use (I believe "scarlet lake" was one of her favorites). :)

My son sat so quietly and listened to her talking. He was so interested, even in the slides of the paints and brushes! (yay)
She read one of her stories (Yoko Writes Her Name) and described her thought process for writing the book and illustrating as she went along. Her dog Sophie was sleeping at her feet the entire time, obviously used to traveling around and giving talks in front of large groups of people. :) Mrs. Wells described how Sophie is the inspiration for her McDuff books.

We didn't actually have a Max and Ruby book for her to sign, because we usually get them from the library! So, we went to the absolutely awesome museum store, which is just FILLED with any children's book you can think of, as well as tons of other goodies and toys. (They also have an online store!) We ended up buying the book she read at the presentation... Then it was off to wait in the big line!
Sporting our party hats, of course:

She signed the book with my son's name in it...

Then she chatted with him for a moment. He made her laugh and it was very cute. :)

We will definetly be back to the museum for the upcoming celebration and exhibit of original Golden Books art!! (I took a sneak peek in the closed off gallery - through a window - and it looks amazing! I can't wait!) Read about it HERE!

Friday, November 20, 2009

Holiday prints are here! Yippee!

I finally finished my prints and they are now available IN MY ETSY SHOP! They are all "choose your own sets" in quantities of 4, 6, 10, and 20! Pick the ones you like and send them to your friends! Yay! :)

p.s. The set of 20 has free shipping to the U.S. and Canada! Sweet Treat!


Monday, November 16, 2009

Christmas Prints!

Coming VERY soon to my online shop... Printed Christmas and Holiday card sets! Yippee!! Here's a little sample:

(How cute are these?! I love 'em!) :)

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Oh So Cute!

I love how these are turning out! Hee hee!!

Works in Progress - Spring, Summer, Winter

Sneak Peak...

Work in progress on some really cute elfy holiday cards... yay!

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Holidays on My Mind...

I am loading gifts and Christmas cards into my shop... I can't seem to stop making new holiday designs! I'm going to try some printed sets of Christmas cards too, with a few super cute designs I came up with tonight. I was, of course, working on something else at the time but as usual that's when I get my ideas! I ended up working on about six things at the same time, and I'm anxious to finish them up (after this quick blogging break)! :)

I am absolutely determined to have a fun and happy holiday season this year! I always love Thanksgiving and Christmas... but it also never fails that I have my annual holiday breakdown! I am normally making things right up until the night before... often wrapping presents IN THE CAR on the way to the family party! (Who does that!?) There's usually crying involved...
Its not happening this year. I'm pledging it now! I want to enjoy my holidays! I can't wait to spend time with my family and friends... and all the other fun stuff that comes along with this time of year! Anyone with me? :)

Stay Crafty!

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Ornaments Now Available in My Shop! :)

I have a few of the larger ones listed, and the smaller ones are still to come. Each is one-of-a-kind... so if you like it, remember its the only one!! I had alot of fun making these, and each one is very special to me... I hope you enjoy them too! :)

See the ornaments HERE!

Blog Feature! (Vote for me!)

I found out today I am one of a few Etsy artists to be featured on the blog of Fantazya! She also has a cute Etsy shop which you should check out.. I see a journal on her site that I'd love to have right now!!!

Anyway, visit her blog and choose your favorite holiday card! She has a little survey going... (I hope you pick me!) :)


Sunday, November 8, 2009

Ornaments Are Coming!

I spent a while today, while the sunlight was good, taking photos of my ornaments. I'm kind of nervous about shipping glass through the mail, but I think the humongous roll of bubble wrap I bought will help me out on that! :) (I'm hoping - fingers crossed!!)


Part of the Process :)

Friday, November 6, 2009

Checking In...

Hi everyone... I just wanted to let you know that I haven't forgotten about ANY of you! Things have been totally crazy at my house, and its just starting to die down now (I wish I had some wood to knock on!!) My little son has been quite sick for a while, but he's much better as of today (Yippee!!) and I'm eager to get back to a normal schedule... (as normal as it gets around here haha!)

On this note, I've decided not to do anymore craft fairs this season, and I'll be attempting to sell my handpainted ornaments online! (I just got my shipment of boxes and bubble wrap in... giant rolls of bubble wrap are AWESOME! haha!) I love doing the fairs, but I really need to de-stress right now. In fact, as soon as I made the decision not to do the fairs, I felt like a weight had been lifted! Its really hard to say no sometimes, and think of your own well-being but it really feels good to just make time for yourself! I recommend it!!

SO... I'm going to be finishing my huge custom orders this weekend and taking photos of my ornaments and some other goodies to post online. That's the plan anyway... we'll see how it goes!

Hope you're all well...
Stay Crafty! ;)