WOYWW 130 – card play and more

A little play on my desk, using some very old stamps – not sure if it will work how I want, but we shall see.  I wanted to use the Spellbinders diamond dies in a certain way and went looking for a few Christmas stamps.  These cute ones seem to fit the shapes, but as the lines aren’t connected I’m not sure if the Copic colouring will work well or not.  I had a quick, rough go and it MAy be ok but I’ll have to try a few more of the images to be sure.

And we often have a laugh over on UKS about using scrapbooking stuff for other purposes.  The silvery tinsel?  It’s a pair of hair adornments for DD and her ice skating Christmas show!  I took some tinsel and some package bows, my hot glue gun, a couple of hair bands and created them for her.  She loves them, I just hope they will hold up for the dress rehearsals and all three performances!

Now off to wander thru cyberspace and see what’s on your workdesk this Wednesday.  Pop in to see the most excellent Julia and the list of links for inspiring desktops all across the world!


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Christmas Card done

My goal was to arrive at a card design that would enable my DD to assist in the process, given her limited physical abilities.  I wanted the ornament to be a part of the design, and fiddled around with a few different methods for hanging it on the card, but in the end the simplest solution was the best one, a small slit in the top edge that would hold the yarn hanger.

I used a number of things that I had on hand and that haven’t seen the light of day in ages.

– plain white untextured card blanks.  I bought them on sale, on a whim, and haven’t used one yet.

– Making Memories magnetic stamps.  They only go up to 2009 for the year stamps, but had all the numbers so I was able to combine the Christmas word and the year on the magnetic holder to stamp as a unit.  I figure DD can stamp them a bit spread out on a shee of white card and I can then punch them so they are centered.

– Hero Arts Christmas words background stamp.  NO idea when I got this but it must be 15 years ago.  Don’t think I have ever used it.

-Kaleidacolor ink pad, variegated greens.  Used this one a lot, but not since I got my Distress inks.

– PM adhesive stones, the little stars that are on there.  I’ve never had a use for the stars (or the hearts for that matter) but this is a good way to use them up! I think I have tow or three that have nothing but the teeny round ones, the stars and the hearts left.

So there you have it.  Simple, cute enough for kids, and basically at no additional cost at all.

If I cut the slit, with help DD can hang the ornament and she can do some of the stamping and sticking as well.  She might manage the background stamp if I set each one up with a stamp positioner but I may have to accept that some of them will be slightly wonky.

It may not be the most elegant of cards, and it’s still so dark and gloomy here not brilliant photography, but it certainly hits all the requirements.  I can even set up a printing press stamp set I have to let DD stamp For Your Tree, from me or something like that, for the inside.  That way she feels part of the process and can say she helped make the cards.  I think she’ll enjoy that.

Now back to tidying up in preparation for ANOTHER visitor for a few days, then blissful peace.

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Origami Wreath Ornaments

Just because I don’t send Christmas cards doesn’t mean that I stop the kids from doing them.  DD has quite a small class, maybe 10 people plus 5 more helpers, so I like to do something more than just a store bought card when I have the time.

At some point I thought I might take these little origami stars and turn them into a wreath, but then I thought it would end up with all the other wreaths, and we have, ahem, a few holiday ones, so I went off the idea.  Then I thought of another idea – turning them into DDs holiday cards and turning them into removable ornaments for her classmates.

So I’ve been working on converting them.  Simple enough, just a hole punched, a bit of ribbon or yarn, a center stuck on to make sure they hold their shape and don’t pull apart (since they are interlocked, not stuck together) and that’s it.  I will attach them to plain card blanks with a printed explanation, and that’s it – simple, cute, and fun for the kids (I hope) but if they end up in the bin there is no great expense lost. Some of the plain ones I Cosmic Shimmer-ed, the centres vary a bit, but overall they simply use up stuff I have.  DD loves them and likes the idea of giving them to her mates, so it’s all good.

They aren’t hard to make and there are instructions all over the net for them, but this one is as good as any.

Have fun – they can be any size, but mine are about 3″ x 1.5″and the final wreath is about 3″ across.  Perfect size for adding to a card.



WOYWW 129 – a printable card

What’s on my workdesk this week is not a lot.  DD is still unwell and last WOYWW she was in the throes of it.  I really shouldn’t have bothered to post at all because I knew getting to even a few desks was going to be a challenge.  But this week she is on an antibiotic and perking up a bit.  Still campaigning to stay home for the rest of the week (NO WAY!) but not quite so much wanting me with her.  That means my decks are cleared for blog hopping, which is good because I ALWAYS miss seeing what everyone is doing.  I may have to scroll back a bit too, to see what I may have missed! Hopefully the lovely Julia will forgive me my sins against WOYWW.  Believe me I am beating myself up about it enough for both of us. I wonder if a nice big tamale pie for the December crop will make amends?

On to slightly more crafty bit. It’s more my desktop than my workdesk, and it’s a printable card.  I was struggling to sort out the sizing, so it would print on one from a bag of card blanks I got in a Hobby Craft sale.  I fiddled and fiddled, trying to make the file size and the print match, but it will insist on putting a margin around it and shifting it all too far left.  It should work as a PDF but it simply doesn’t.  Hence the series of slightly different sized images in .jpg and .pdf form on the right monitor and the Google search for UK card sizes n the left.  I hate it when what seems logical to me doesn’t work the way I think it should.  I’m sure there is some stupid box that needs ticking or unticking to make it right, but given I can only snatch a few minutes at a time to try to sort it, I am giving up. So here is what it looks like.  I’ll add it as a download although suspect it is of limited interest.  It works for me, I hope if you like it and can use it, it works for you too!

One thing that I’ve noted after all these years in the UK is the differences in Christmas.  In the USA we do Santa, rather than Father Christmas (and fat, rather than thin – does that say something? not sure LOL!)  No one I know does a goose, this despite having JUST had the whole turkey-with trimmings the month before (TOMORROW!) for Thanksgiving.  Figgy (steamed) puddings may be popular someplace in the USA, but not for us – fruitcake is close, but cold, not hot.  Merry not Happy, never in all my youth was a sprout in evidence, and I had never heard of Boxing Day except when reading, and always wondered what and when it was.  So I thought for the very few limited cards I send with gifts back to family in the USA, it might be fun to highlight some of this.  Hence the card design.

As it’s a .jpg, not entirely sure what might happen with it.  I think either it will download automatically or, more likely, it will appear in a new window, in which case you can right click to save the image.  It should then print by just popping a 10 x 7 (more or less) card blank in just as you would load a piece of printer paper.  But, hey, give it a go and LMK what happens.  I tend to print things I’m not sure of first on cheap printer paper, on an economy setting, just to see what happens.  Maybe do that. And as it’s a .jpg you can ope it in PSE and fiddle with the size – I think it’s hi-res enough, at 300 dpi, to take a bit of resizing.

I’ll be desk-hopping while pretending to watch either another of the endless Barbie movies, or an episode of Glee for the 500th time.  Forgive me it I am less than clear in my comments.

Happy Thanksgiving for any US visitors.


Blog re-org

Hi all.

Those of you on UKS may have seen my post on Maddie and her infected toe.  Too, too yucky.  Poor little lamb has been home on the sofa for just about a week.  She is finally on an antibiotic, but it’s meant me, dead in the water, so far as any serious crafting goes.  I finally managed a quick set of gift tag printables and some Christmas printables links over the weekend, and a You Tube video for both the embossing techniques (glittery glue and chalk ink) but it’s nothing you won’t have seen here already. And the rest of it will have to wait till she’s up and about and not calling for me every 5 minutes.

But I have been looking at this blog and wondering if it is all just that little bit too cluttered.  I like the idea of having the thumbnails of the various projects in the sidebar, to make it easy for people to see and select ones to download (and I do get a ton of downloads every day, so in that sense it does seem to work) or linking to a post with more info.  But I thought I might make the time to add a page bar at the top, so the stuff would be on a dedicated page.  I think this would be easier for me to keep it up to date, adding new stuff to the page when I add it to the daily blog part, and limit the sidebar clutter a bit – maybe even utilizing the entire middle section for the post.

I just wondered if anyone had any thoughts on that?  I know a lot of people visit without commenting, which I have no problem with, but I would love to hear from you if you like the info all there on the main page, even if it means the sidebar is a bit chaotic, or if a page link at the top that houses all the downloads (and is always bang up to date) is better, even if it means an additional click to reveal it.

Not the usual inspiration (or at least I hope inspirational) crafty post, but these housekeeping things are needed occasionally to keep the blog relevant and interesting.

So comment away if you have an opinion.  And wish DD a speedy recovery so I can get back too it.  I still have two layouts in mid-completion stage, my Daily Life mini still needing the inserts, and lots in my head, as well as a printable still in the creating stage, so I hope to get back to all that very soon.


Sunday-someplace-else (Christmas Printables)

I’m just starting to collect links for Christmas printables and thought I would share a few of them now.  As I may have mentioned, as an American, it’s hard for me to even entertain the thought of Christmas before Thanksgiving, but I know if I wait till after then I may find to many to house in one post, so dribbling them out is a better plan.  And I know lots of people are already working on their cards and gifts so this will get you started!

First, one from Domestifluff:



Very graphic and not at all twee so just my style.

Remember the Grab Your Balls card?  Same people offered this printable card a couple of years back.  Still cute.

Mad About Pink has a variety of goodies.  Cute Gnome Notecards and a sweet little set of tags.

Lots of stuff in the link for all her printables too, so have a browse.

Super simple but cute and effective and in many colours.

This one is a nod to the twee. I like a few of them a lot, so I thought I would include them.

And for a more ambitious project, check out this adorable printable Christmas Village.  Just the one house for free but it looks like she may still have more. It’s originally from 2009.


Printable gift tags

OK, I’ll admit it.  Although I really shouldn’t feel like I have to apologise for going AWOL over the last few days, because my poor little DD has done some sort of damage to her toe and has been tucked up on the sofa but pleading for me to spend time with her, I feel a bit guilty.  My WOYWW performance was rubbish (non-existent, really) this week, and I’ve not managed to blog even an excuse.  While some days I feel like I am talking to myself here, but I hate to be the blogger that disappeared. So I thought I’d just pop on really quick and post some gift tags I was mostly working on for my own use, but that someone may get some use out of.

I’m working on better set, but got side-tracked by the cries to come watch Barbie: A Christmas Carol.  Ugh.

I’m not into the super Christmas-y look, all elves and holly and big fat Santa.  I tend towards the simpler, more graphic style and these tags suit me.  Not totally Christmas colours, even, but the first two are at least a nod in that direction, they are easy to use.  Slice them up with a trimmer, and if you want to take the extra step, round the corners, then punch a hole.  The hole isn’t even hinted at, so no struggle to line up a punch or your Cropadile.

I did find what I would TOTALLY send as my Christmas card, if I sent Christmas cards.  It doesn’t really work with the British variation, but my crop-mates will get the joke here cause I am ALWAYS saying BALLS! when I mess something up and they have taken to mimicking me, with an American accent.


WOYWW 128 – as yet unfinished

I have a layout in my crop bag, have had it there for two crops, and it is still unfinished.  I meant to finish it up last Saturday but got side-tracked by the mini-book.  I am determined to finish it up TODAY!  But small problem. DH is off in Austria and DD has injured her foot in some way.  I think she had her toe curled under into her brace and walked on it all day yesterday, or somehow gave it an almighty bash and never told me, because I can see a bruise under her toenail.  I had to piggy-back her off the bus (no mean feat, let me tell you!) and then wheel her around on a rolling desk chair all evening.  I decided to keep her home today as it is clearly too painful to walk on.  So I will have her at home, tucked up on the sofa, expecting service with a smile, if you please.  So that’s my day.  Want to take bets I DON’T finish the layout?  {sigh}

Sorry for the dim and dismal photo – so dark here now for so much of the day.  I should have pre-planned better to take the photo in the mid-morning sunlight yesterday!

Oh and lest I forget…do pop over to see Julia and the rest of the WOYWW crowd.  Such fun and a day chock full o’ inspiration.


Progress made – Life is so Daily minibook

I got a fair bit done at the crop (after getting sidetracked teaching the construction of the sliding book to the rest of the ladies) and while I am not totally done, I thought I would post an update of where I am so far.

Two big images showing the pages, the added photos (with space for more stamping and quotes) and the book slid out.

I actually attached the pull tab to the back page, just allowing a little bit of an extension to show on the front, so I have a good space to write “instructions” for DS there.  I don’t really have  great deal of hope that he will use this as I intend, but maybe at some point in his like, perhaps long after I am gone, he’ll look back on it with fondness and hear me whispering in his ear.  Actually, I must be hormonal, cause the idea brings a bit of a tear to my eye. How much of these sorts of projects do I actually do for me, and how much for the recipient?  Is it more than 50/50?  It may very well be, but I get the joy of creating, and frankly, unless he throws it in the bin (which even on my worst day I doubt would ever happen) I suppose I’ll be happy.

I do quite like the little grid circles, which I made by glueing a sheet of plain grid paper from a tablet to white cardstock then punching them and smudging black soot ink on the edges.  It sets off the small letters well. I really didn’t want to use a different font or bigger letters due to the size of the envelope flaps, but they were too small and indistinct on their own. A good solution.

So now only the little quote strips to add, and the rest of the text, which I may just write, around the photos.  I think I’ve been quite restrained, keeping it from tipping over into the girly/pretty look that a project for DD calls for.

Not sure if there is any interest, but I may add the quotes I’m using as text that can just be copied and pasted for you.  I do tend to think quotes are a personal choice, but I found some I really like (starting with the Life is so daily title – it just sums it up so nicely!) so maybe others will appreciate the list even as a starting point.


Life is so daily mini-book

I’ve sorted out what I want to do with the inserts so I thought I would quickly share them.  I think I should finish it at my crop tomorrow, providing my back holds out.

I am printing a series of quotes on paper.  I am choosing plain paper, with just and inked edge because I am looking for maximum readability and my handwriting is pretty rubbish.

On the flip side of each I am writing my own thoughts on the quote.

The ends of each slip will get a black circle and a smaller circle on the front, plain black circle on the back – the reason for this is so DS can take out a slip, read it, and then slip it back in, reversed.  This will be an indicator to himself that he has already read it. Clever, hummm?

The other benefit is I can easily make additional strips at any time and will not need more of the paper to do so.  He can collect a new set, or I can mail them to him, at any time so there will always be words from Mom for him to dip in to  – yeah, like that’ll happen…

Anyway, I titled the book Life is so Daily (which is a quote from Inez Turley) and the cover will look something like this – not quite done, but close.

I avoided loads of dimensional elements as it’s for DS so kept it quite grungy and graffiti in style, which will appeal to him more than lots of pretty touches – I’ll save that for DD.

The back of each envelope will have a family photo, ones that I think will make him smile.

I am loving it and enjoying the process – I just hope he does as well. Anxious to finifh it up now to make sure the final construction works. I’ll update on that next week.  Off to crop tomorrow.  Hope you are doing something crafty with your weekend!