A mixed bag of musings and a couple of cards.

If you read here often, you may recall my disappointment about a set of journal cards I made. I’ve posted them a few times, but have now removed them from most places while I have a think and maybe re-work them. I mean it could be as simple as a name that doesn’t make people want to look at them or the foreign language text or who knows what else.

When I posted them I mentioned that I felt they would make nice cards. And threatened to do that myself. Have done.

I think you can see how I was thinking. The one at the back and the thin strip I redid without the text, and printed on a creamy cardstock, while the bright ones were printed on bright white coated cardstock. The cards ended up nice enough.

I love the swirl pattern within the blocks of colour and the embossing folder really echos that, even if the pattern is not exactly the same.

And the other card uses the same folder at the back, so only bits peeping out.

So I have thoughts of how I might alter these and will probably have a bash at them again. I really don’t like abandoning stuff, so maybe one last go….But I said the same about the Language of Flowers set – I made one that was great, worked and worked on another and was never happy, then found another book and made that one, loved it, but I just keep looking back to the middle one and thinking surely I can sort this out…”and don’t call me Shirley…”



The Flexagon Card

I was asked, before life all went a bit mad, about a tutorial for the Flexagon card. I did want to do another step-by-step, given that I did learn a few things while making the last one. So I made one and tried to capture the steps. What the photos don’t show I hope I can explain verbally. I do have a bit of an idea, but we’ll see if it comes to fruition.

OK. What you need for this is thinner, single-sided paper. Not that you can’t use double-sided cardstock, but if that is what you have, I would go back and look at the previous posts here and here. Looking at trying to make the different areas of the card from different patterns, so the flips all worked how I wanted, the simple solution was to fold the circles in half!

Let’s look at the card:

This one begins with the split in the middle horizontally. The sample offers a variation, where the split in the top piece is Vertical. Either works. What you need:

  • single sided patterned paper
  • a big circle die

First, you will cut four circles. I used a 6.5 inch die, but smaller and you might be able to use a pre-made envelope. Something to consider.

I chose to do two the same and two different because this is a two-event card. The first thing you have to do is fold each circle in half and glue the wrong sides together. If your circles have real directional prints, try to get them in line. I find a lined mat, glass, self healing, whatever, helps. Just position the pattern (in this case, the line of dots) along the grid line.

Once you get that done, fold the sides in to not quite meet in the middle. Leave a hair’s breadth in the middle and do NOT overlap.

This part is really the only slightly tricky part! Stack the half-circles as full circles, one with the folds as Valley folds, split horizontal across the middle:

the other set on top, split vertical and the folds as Mountain folds.

You can maybe see that the bottom folds in that last photo look like Valleys. That is because the next step is to flip the four areas above or below those folds out of the way so you can glue the four pieces together.

It is only that tiny small area to the (in this position) RIGHT of the fold on the stripy paper and BELOW the fold on the dotty paper, that gets the glue. Use wet glue that grips fast. Art Glitter Glue has never let me down! I clamp the two bits together to keep them from sliding around, then remove the clamp, do each tiny area and replace the clamp, then rotate till I have all four done.

And that is it. You can now decorate your card.

I like to add text to the top layer. The first card had the recipients name, with the HAPPY’s on the next flip and the occasion the flip after that. This card I had the HAPPY x TWO on the front

then the occasions you are celebrating on the next, and the TO YOU on the one after.

That left the last flip with space to add a handwritten message. I hope this will show you that you have a lot of scope to arrange the card as you like. Also to get creative with the paper choices if you want, or go very simple if you prefer.

To be fair I am not super happy with the colours and fonts here, but I struggled to find thinner single sided paper and have only a few celebration dies. It works to demonstrate the double-event celebration in a single card idea, but better paper, better dies for the sentiment, and I think it would have been a better card! I much prefer the single-letter dies I used in the original than the full-words in this sample. Live and learn LOL!

But now you know the actually fairly simple method to make this sort of card, you can have a go yourself. And do share! I have always loved my version of the Endless Card, starting with a circle, so I hope you try it.


Slight deviation – A multi-event card

Dear Son’s lovely girl has her birthday on Valentine’s Day. He asked for a card that was clearly for BOTH events and said he was sure I could figure something out.

In the end I went back to the old flexagon idea. It’s a variation of the endless card, but round rather than the usual. I’ve done this before, both as a card and as a scrapbook layout, so it wasn’t super difficult, although sorting out the best way to do the papers was trickier than I hoped. MOSTLY the clear direction of the papers was not an issue but you will see the hearts ended up upside down in one flip. Oh well.

I did have to make an envelope, but just a square so not super difficult.

Annoyed with myself, because I worked out where the words needed to go in order for them to be hidden until the flip that revealed the page and I screwed it up because I liked how V-Day looked across the middle of that section. So yeah, you can see DAY was too low. Typical.

The last section is where DS could write a message. Tricky, too, because some of the areas would be on show. Not sure how he resolved it, but I trust he did.

You can see with the exception of the Birthday/V-day flip the hearts are upright in every other case. I did learn some interesting bits of info for using single-sided papers and getting the placement of the half-circles right in order for the card to truly seem like it was clearly covering two special days. I may blog that at some point, if I find time, but this is the first card I have made in AGES so I am out of practice with the whole documenting part. DS is convinced that there should be a market for cards that cover more than one event. I had an Uncle who was born on Christmas, but that is the only other person I knew who had a double-day. How about you? Are there more of them out there than I think?


Sticking tricky sentiments and weird Scan & Cut issue?

I created the Merry Christmas sentiment and when I tried to send it to my Scan&Cut, it refused to recognize the fonts! It was very strange. All the other elements seemed to be fine but not fonts used and saved as an SVG in my program. Now, I do need to try a different program to see if it is the program that is the issue or if it is the fonts but it was a bit annoying.

The workaround for me is to use the online SVG converter found here. I’ve mentioned it before. I waved the image as a .jpg then converted it to an SVG using the online tool, and that transferred

and cut just fine, even the fairly thin font at 5 1/2 inches

More experimentation is needed.

I just thought I would mention how I like to stick tricky, thin sentiments like this. I used to dot glue or matte medium on the back from a bottle, but it’s time-consuming and annoying to do. Instead I like to use my gel plate – I roll out a thin coat of the matte medium, lay on the sentiments. then pluck them off and stick them to the card front. Adding a weight over them will usually ensure a good stick.

You can do what you see here and take up the extra matte medium with deli paper but usually I cover the plate with sentiments and pluck them off one at a time. If the cards are all ready to go, I can usually get them on quick enough for it not to dry on me, even this sort of fiddly one.

The matte medium works great as a glue so they are well and truly stuck when they dry.

I realize I have not added any tags! Only because this weekend I know I will be wrapping a LOT of gifts so will need some new ones myself, I need to do some for me. And when I do, I always share. So look for them tomorrow, all being well. I have a few ideas for a design, but we’ll see if I can find the resources to make that vision real.

Watch this space!

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Cards – the woven one too, although…

…not a massive success.

The original one I did, from the white-on-white paper turned out really sweet, I think.

I had a lot more to work with, frankly, because I had the foresight to scan the paper and work with that from the beginning. Note to self: even if you don’t LOVE it, SCAN IT! With the Green+Red I only had the bits trimmed off from the 12 x 12 sheet to create the weave. Now I think of it, if I could have cut a smaller card front, I bet I could have covered it – I just didn’t think of it!

I stuck the sentiment down too far to the left on the actual card so the white touches the white background, which is annoying, but this is one that goes in the emergency stash – when I need a card quick and am out of the top tier ones. It happens. Someone shows up with a card and you have to dash upstairs to “get the one you made” just for them but, well, you didn’t. A stack of pre-signed and with-envelope cards that one need a name scrawled on the front can be a lifesaver. So while this one may look a bit like the ugly step-sister of the group, it will do in a pinch!

They look quite arty, really, so happy enough.


Resticking my S&C mat and cutting sentiments

I used one of the tips online for re-sticking the mat (spray adhesive) and it worked OK. Honestly, the more I read about how crap the Brother mats are and the more I use them, the more I agree. I am tempted by the tutorials that suggest using a Cricut mat cut and stuck to the brother one. I suspect you would need to do a test cut to get the pressure right but it sounds like it might work. I designed and cut a sheet of sentiments for cards using the Red & Green paper from last week. I think these will end my card-making or the holidays. I should have enough. These used the actual paper, not a scan. I really wanted the texture and painterly feel to be there, showing them as actual physical art, not an image of art.

In one area of the mat I had some bubbles from the spray adhesive, and that sentiment cut perfectly but would not let go of the mat. Not bad to have only one sacrificed to the cutting Gods. The big sentiment looked good on the background and there was enough to cover four cards

Simple enough. I designed the MERRY to be straight across, and used that to keep it aligned nicely.

It can be really hard to get them straight sometimes. Anyway I added a trio of gold sequins as well, just for that little bit of extra bling

If this had been a die, I might have cut a fun foam duplicate to pop it up a bit, but these might well be mailed (yeah, takinga chance there, given the state of the global post services lately) so lat is where it’s at!

There are some strips trimmed off to get to the 5 1/2″ square chunks I wanted to fit the card fronts, so I will play around with them to create a 5th card, I think. Might be OK, I’ll have to see. I did make a woven background from strips of the white-on-white scan and I really liked that a lot, so if I can, I may try that. I’ll share both if it turns out well. If not….crickets!

Dithering over what I will do over the holiday week between Xmas and New Year. I might go dark, I might bring back some old posts, I might have a massive spurt of creativity. I honestly don’t know. This year more than recent years, with Dear Son in residence, I feel like it will be precious family time to enjoy together. Between that and surely a ton of family Zooms or Facetimes, arty time might be in short supply. Not gonna lie, I’m looking forward to chilling out with a ton of sappy holiday movies (and Die Hard, much to Darling Daughter’s chagrin LOL!) and getting some cat cuddles in front of the tree. One more skating event before the big day, a Teams meeting for DD about a new project she might work on, a Holiday lunch with friends and a Dr. phone call. so not the most restful week.

Enough moaning. Cards!

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Using scans of my White on White challenge piece

Crikey. This worked so much better than I expected it to!! I scanned the piece and printed it on my laser (left, a bit pale) and inkjet (right) printers and they looked pretty good to me.

Now, the laser only prints A4 and because I wanted to capture a different piece of the whole, so I could play with the different areas, I flipped it. Clearly I forgot there are letters on there. But to be honest I’m not sure it really matters, as the letters are more a design element than actual text IYKWIM. I did then tart up each piece with gold paint, as the shimmer of the original gets totally lost in the scanned and printed version.

Love them so much. I cut them into chunks to top the card bases I really want to use up, then stitched around the edges. Where the first card had a lot of elements, these came together in a flash. The only slightly tie consuming part was the stars. I used a combination of gold mic powder and some old UTEE in gold, to give a really distressed look to it.

The final card is still really pretty but a lot less work and a lot less textured, because the scan is flat. Obviously LOL!

And just a quick side-by-side

I do think I really prefer the simpler one. Quick to make but still really nice and less…cluttered maybe. And using scanned papers, I can make a ton of them because I am not limited to how many I can get from my single 12×12.


Tree goes up this weekend. Worried about the cat – will she want to scale it? Not sure. Son tells me they never put up a tree in the States so it could be interesting…


First Card. Forst of a few or first of many?

I have never been one to send out stacks of cards. I just never really go into the habit of it and carried on the same. Recently, I feel the draw of holiday cardmaking more than before. I have a small (and I mean very small, probably less than 10 people) list that is 90% family (and not even all of them) and a couple very very close friends. So the cards from my one masterboard will probably make 80% of the cards I need. The design is pretty simple, but with a lot of parts.

The card bases I have that I want to use up are actually embossed with a large rectangle in the middle. I am covering that with a bit of the W-on-W sheet

The sentiment is a die cut from a sheet of cardstock covered in sparkly gold tissue.

The tag has some gold stenciling then is topped with a couple of stars. The smaller stars are hand cut using the same stencil as the stars on the masterboard and the bigger ones are a punch.

That goes on top of the card front and… Ta Da!

I really like it, and while it is perhaps more time-consuming than is ideal for someone making 50+ cards, for someone making 10, it isn’t so bad.

I am still hoping to experiment with my scan, to see if I can print something that looks decent enough and embellish it. I don’t have enough of the sparkly paper the stars are cut from to make a lot more, so I need to consider altering the design. I might hold that for the weekend, and work on that long sheet of packaging paper. Still not sure what to make of it but something will reveal itself at some point – or someone will suggest something and I will slap my forehead and say Of course!

Collaborative projects are so much fun ….

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Just a quick one while the house is in chaos

I was working on Easter cards for the family and as I made them, I figured I might as well share them, as the painting and minor repair etc. will mean the house is chaotic and getting to do actual crafting is tricky.

I am also experimenting with a new way to add the PDFs. Not sure how much I like it but we will see when it publishes how it looks! Sometimes, “improvements” are not!

Anyway, easy peasy. Print and cut the quadrants then pop them on a cardfront. These fit an A5 card but should be easily trimmed to fit a 1/4 US letter size or perhaps even a few others.

Darling daughter is mad keen on anime, and she has been missing her annual trip to HyperJapan for the last few pandemic years. They did hold it online in 2021, but it’s just not the same. Anyway, kawaii cute cards are perfect for here, and these bunnies made me smile. Hope you find them useful if you need a quick card!

I’m curious – is it better to do a card with the front arranged so all you have to do is print and fold on plain printer paper? I always cut the high-quality printed PDF images then stick them to the front of an actual card base, either a commercial one of one made from quality cardstock leftovers. But I always wonder if more people would prefer the easiest and most basic option. LMK!

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My card stash came in handy….

As I am still not really going out, obviously I would hand-make cards rather than buying them. I suppose I would do that anyway, but sometimes you might see a fab store-bought card that is so perfect you just have to buy it – or pilfer the design + words for your next handmade attempt! For Valentine’s Day I had a few cards pre-made, from my a-card-a-day efforts last year, so I had lots to choose from.

I picked two that were in a similar vein:

What I was reminded of was the technique I used of cutting the intricate Cherry Lynne die into different shapes for the focal points:

Yeesh. Sorry about the hot spot reflecting off the silver mirror card heart! The interesting thing is the post that outlined my experiments with this die is old – 2012 to be exact – and these were only a few of the options I played with back then:

I still love this die and loved using it again. Maybe you have one and this will make you want to drag it out and use it!