Monday, November 12, 2018

Twelve Days of Tags

We had another challenge on the Sizzix Eclips/Ecal FB page, this time to make 12 tags from any source using our Eclips cutting machine/software. We were to post one a day for the first 12 days of November. We posted our 12th tag today. I chose to do all of my tags using cutting files from SVG Cuts. I used multiple files types: cards,  boxes, bags,  box cards, flat collections, then took a single element (or two) and turned them into Christmas tags. The tags range from 3-1/4" to 6" tall.

Tag 1 (Reindeer) is from a card found in the Mistletoe Manor SVG Kit. I powder embossed the silver snowflakes in the background, and used Wink of Stella on the harness and antlers.
Tag 2 (Trees) is from a box card found in the Christmas Box Cards SVG Kit.
Tag 3 (Vintage Santa) is also from a box card from the same place, Christmas Box Cards SVG Kit.
Tag 4 (Snowman) is made with a cut file for a bag in the Happy Holidays SVG Kit.
Tag 5 (Wreath) is made from a card in the Silent Night SVG Kit. The wording and to/from elements were added in Photoshop, and then I used print-2-cut to cut it out.
Tag 6 (Stocking) is from a box card in the Silent Night SVG Kit
Tag 7 (Mitten) is revised from a box cut file found in the Santa's Sweets SVG Kit.
Tag 8 (Gingerbread Man) was also a box cut file in Santa's Sweets SVG Kit.
Tag 9 (Sled/Skates) is not so much Christmas as it is winter, but it still fits fine for the Christmas holiday. It is from a lever card found in the Winter Gazebo SVG Kit.
Tag 10 (Toy Soldier) is a gift bag from the Big Christmas Gift Bags SVG Kit. I used only one of the three, so had to do some manipulating because the three soldiers were all welded together.
Tag 11 (Ornaments) is from another flat collection, Christmas in the Village SVG Collection.
Tag 12 (Reindeer) is a combination of  two kits. The reindeer is from a flat collection called Comet's Candy Land SVG Collection, and the trees from the Camp Firefly SVG Kit.

And, that's it. This was such a fun challenge, albeit a lot of work figuring out what cut files to use, what paper to use (I used 98% scraps for these projects), and what size/design to make the tags. We always learn a lot, and enjoy every minute in our challenges. If you have a Sizzix Eclips and use the ECAL software you should join us on Facebook! We have a very supportive and great group, and always like to welcome new members,  share ideas and techniques and what we make.

(click on photo for larger view)

Time to Wrap and Tag Those Gifts!

Sunday, October 14, 2018

Travel Journal (Fauxdori)

The tutorial/design of this Travel Journal Set (fauxdori) is from Paper Phenomenon. I've been wanting to make it for a while, to the point that a few years ago I gathered the supplies to make it, but when I finally went to make it recently I couldn't find what I had purchased, so had to buy some of it again. I was curious to work with Kraft-Tex (I didn't lose that), and the idea of using Heat and Bond to cover it with cardstock was intriguing.

This journal is a version of a Midori travel notebook. It contains small insert booklets that can be used, removed and replaced. If you don't want to make them, you can buy them online.

Here's the one I made. The cardstock I used was digital paper, and I added photos of the recipient's wedding into the graphics of the paper to personalize it.
The cardstock is ironed onto the Kraft-Tex, an untearable paper/fabric you can get in different colors and sizes. Heat and Bond is used to fuse it to the cardstock and it adheres really well.

The cover is a piece that is folded up from the bottom, making the outside pockets. Pockets are added on the inside cover as well.
There are three notebooks that fit inside, held in by elastic bands. This first one contained watercolor paper, as my friend is an artist and love multi-media art. I made it so that one side of the page opens up to make for a larger work surface.
The cover of each fauxdori insert has a pocket (the bottom edge is folded up to make it).

This second insert contains artist sketch paper (lighter weight than the watercolor paper, but heavier than copy paper)

And, this third insert was made with copy paper, not so much for art, but for journaling, notes, lists, etc.
This cardstock cover (printed from digi paper by Carta Bella - Metropolitan Girl) has four rows of buildings on it. I altered it to flip the bottom row of houses so that when the book opens, the pocket folds right-side up.

Elastic bands are threaded through eyelet holes in the spine that hold the inserts in place, as well as one on the back used to hold the book closed.

The cover is a bit stiffer than I was hoping for. I was thinking it would be softer and more leather like. I'm hoping overtime the paper fibers will loosen up a bit. I was also wondering how grunge paper would work for the cover, as it is not tearable either.

Thanks for taking a look. If you're interested, you can get the pattern and tutorials from Paper Phenomenon (Kathy King). Also take a look at the amazing things she designs. And, there's an amazing Paper Phenomenon Fan community on Facebook. Kathy does live youtube video get-togethers a couple of times a week as well.

Cherish and Document Your Memories!

Halloween Pumpkin Party

It's become a "thing" between my grandson and myself that I give him "silly" cards for holidays/events. It's getting harder and harder to give him something he hasn't already received. This is my most recent card, a pumpkin Halloween card. The pattern for this card is from SVG Cuts' Barn Party SVG Kit.
This is a box card, so is about 2-3/4" from front to back, but it folds down flat for mailing.
The little treat bag on the front is from SVG Cuts' The Candy Gang SVG Kit. The pattern size is about about 4.5" tall, but I made it at 1" tall for the card. All cuts were made with my Sizzix Eclips2 electronic cutting machine.
I designed the back in Photoshop and did a print-2-cut, with a little Wink of Stella added to the flying pumpkin bats and the spider for some sparkle.
The thing that makes this one a bit fun and special is that I've added a sound chip into the back section of the box card. I took the instrumental portion of Teddy Bear's Picnic, changed a few of the words around to make it a pumpkin theme, then recorded myself singing the new lyrics. I then transferred the audio onto the chip (instructions to do so come with the chip that I purchased from Invite by Voice) Here's how it worked:

The tricky part about adding this audio chip was that the music is activated by a light sensitive sensor. And, box cards don't close up like traditional greeting cards so too much light was filtering through. It would just start playing arbitrarily, and not necessarily when I opened the card as in the video. Took a bit of sitting around, mulling my predicament. When working properly, the song plays one time and then stops. When the card is closed it won't play the music, but when you reopen it, it will play again.

It finally came to me that I somehow needed to shade the top of the sensor. I devised this very simple fix. I took a piece of scrap paper about an inch wide and 1.5" tall. I didn't measure it, so I'm guessing that's about what it was. I folded about a quarter inch on the top/short side three times, rolling then gluing the top most portion to the large area.

I glued it to the back of the second insert so that when the box card closes, the little overhang ends up just above the light sensor. Success! So glad it worked. 
When closed you can see how the insert is covering the area of the sensor.

And, that pretty much does it. Except one thing. I couldn't just put the card in an envelope without possibly smashing the electronics and the mini treat bag. I finally decided I needed a sturdy box in which to mail it. I couldn't find anything that would work, so I made a box to fit it perfectly from chipboard. The top fits on snugly, so there's no chance of it coming off.

Lastly, I need to find one very small piece of candy for the little treat bag on the front of the card.
Happy Halloween and Have Fun
Trick or Treating with Your Favorite Lil' Pumpkin!

Sunday, September 30, 2018

Vintage Airplane - Biplane

Well, here I go again. Can't believe I never posted this darling biplane that I made last spring!

This cut file comes from Cre8ive Cutz, and is called 3D Paper Plane - Vintage Biplane.  I sort of used crazy paper, but had fun doing it. It's digi paper from Snap Click Supply that I printed out myself. The paper pack is "Out of Print" by Basic Grey.
The nose of the airplane comes off, so if this is a gift you could hide a little surprise in the body. It's about 9.5" from front to back and about 4" tall.

The little cockpit actually has an acrylic window.
I think it's so cute! Thanks, Nancy, for the great cut file. My grandson has requested his very own biplane. When I make it for him, I'll be spraying it with some acrylic to give it a bit more strength.

Fasten Your Seat Belt and
Have a Great Flight!

Tuesday, September 18, 2018

Diamond Ring - Eclips Challenge

Our fun Sizzix Eclips and ECAL Facebook page has regular challenges set up in order to learn more about our cutting machines, and more particularly the software (ECAL) for such. We are regularly challenged to use the tools and effects in the software, which always leads to new ideas and knowledge. Our group leader is Jan, and she is always extremely helpful and manages the challenges. And, we appreciate her so much!

This challenge asked us to use freebie cut files from any of our three challenge sponsors (Simply Crafty SVGs, Dreaming Tree, or Birds Cards). I chose Simply Crafty SVGs for mine, and used two of her free cut files, the clamshell box and the single K-Cup holder.
I reduced the size of the clamshell box to 2-1/8" on the long side, cut it and glued it shut. Then, I opened the same cut file again and cropped out just the very top section of the box and reduce it to just barely over an inch, and glued it onto the top of the clamshell box, just to give it some extra dimension. I purchased some 2" plastic rings, which were a bit flat, so I used two of them and made a little "T" piece that fit between the two, so that there would be two tabs at the top edge, then  glued them together. After the glue on the rings dried, I wrapped it in shiny silver ribbon. This was then glued onto the bottom of the diamond (clamshell box) after I blinged it out. 

The K-Cup holder was enlarged to pretty much fill up my 12"x12" cutting mat. It ended up being 3-1/4" across. I removed the circle for the C-cup, and replaced it with a slit for the ring. I also made an extra panel for the top of the box, as well as two inserts with panels for the sides of the box, just to give it a bit more stability. The original box is open on the sides.

The little Marry Me wording on the back of the holder was made in Photoshop, and cut with my Eclips using the print-2-cut technique. I went over the lettering with Wink of Stella to give it shimmer, but it doesn't translate too well in the photographs.

And, that pretty much does it. If you have a Sizzix Eclips with ECAL software, join us on our Facebook page. So many great people there who share amazing projects and knowledge. And, all are very willing to answer any questions you might have with anything to do with the Eclips and ECAL software. P.S. The theme of the project does not have any personal connection to me. It just came to mind when looking at Sandy's free cut files, and was made solely for the challenge. So, honest, I'm not asking anyone to Marry Me!  There were no hidden cameras, and no flash mob occurred. 😃

Bring on the Next Challenge!

Monday, July 23, 2018

Shine Your Light!

I made this little lantern for my great-nephew who just turned three. He had received a Cars-themed tent and sleeping bag for his birthday, so I thought this might be a fun little addition for playtime. The cut file is from SVG Cuts' Wildflower Saloon SVG Kit, from which I had previously made the quilt box and the box card.
I printed the vellum for the light portion of the lantern, but not without its trials. My printer did not want to take the vellum. I tried two different types. After thinking about it, I took an 8.5" x 11" piece of vellum and a piece of copy paper. I used my 1/4" tape runner and added a thin line of tape around the very outer edges of the copy paper, then adhered the vellum of the same size to it. This satisfied my printer, and it went through without a hitch. The vellum came off of the tape without any problems.

I always seem to make some small alteration to my projects, and this one is no different. It was made to have an electric corded candle inside. I wanted this to be more kid friendly, and to use just a tea light. So, I closed (removed nodes) the openings for the cord so it looks the same all the way around. Also, the top fits on snugly enough that the lantern can be carried around or maybe hung from the inside of his tent.

I was just going to set the tea light in the base, but it needed to be a bit higher to illuminate better. So, I found the plastic top to a medicine bottle, and covered it in red card stock with an added ledge around the top.

At this point I noticed that the tea light was about 1/8" too high for the top section of the lantern. The tea light has some little feet on it, so I set them on my ink pad, and inked the area on the top so I'd know exactly where to drill some holes.
The tea light fits snugly into the holder now. I was going to glue the holder into the lantern base, but decided not to as it is easier to take the whole thing out to insert the tea light into the holes.
The candle insert ended up being the perfect height. 
That's pretty much it. Except for one more step that I have not done before. Before attaching the vellum to the lantern, I sprayed the base, handles and top with a Minwax water based polycrylic (polyurethane) semi-gloss. It gave the paper a very mild sheen, and stiffened the card stock nicely. Since it's for a 3-year-old boy, I figured it could use a bit of added strength.

Next, I made a rotating wheel card in the same Cars theme. I designed my own cut file for this card, which is an A6 size. Used cut-2-print for the face and the spinner wheel, which I prepared in Photoshop. The rotating wheel spins to reveal four different images/sentiments in the little window.
I used Photoshop to make the inside sentiment, as well as a couple of dies to cut them out.
Happy Birthday, Greyson!
And, there you have it.  It goes into the mail today. I hope he enjoys it. 

Let Your Light Shine Bright!