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freshly noted: December 2011


a year in review: 2011

ETA: Adding some text to explain why I chose each card...thought it would be a nice touch. :)

2011 has been a very fun year in papercrafting for me. I have made some amazing new friends and I was able to post a lot more often here on the blog. I am still thinking about goals for 2012, but posting even more here on the blog is surely one of them.

I decided to play along in the Year in Review Blog Hop that's going on right now, featuring my favorite projects of each month over the last year:

This card was made using flowers that I cut out from someone else's Christmas card. It was a pretty swanky card that was sent from one of my husband's political colleagues; I chose this card because of the joy I feel knowing those political days are behind us now.

I cased this card by Melissa Phillips, so I can't take credit for the design, but I chose it because I *love* the patterned paper and because it was one of the first cards I made using my sewing machine, this year's Valentine's Day gift from my husband. 2011 will be remembered as the year I truly fell head over heels for patterned paper and for sewing on cards.

This card stood out because of the message of "HOPE" in the patterned paper and because I love those stick pins.

The card I made for my Dad for Father's Day...I love my dad...so why not choose this one?

I was so touched when Christina MacLaren gave me a set of crocheted flowers that she made herself. They're beautiful, aren't they?!

I never would have thought I could come up with something CAS, but I just loved how this one turned out.

I chose this card as a reminder of the awesome online Summer Card Camp that I took this year.

So pretty and feminine...I don't use pastel colors often, but with the pinwheel die from Lil' Inkers, it just seemed right.

This card stood out mostly because of my love for the Jenni Bowlin ivory flower embellishments, but also because it was my first time trying Verve stamps. The Crate Paper paper looks awesome too.

I had to feature a card using A Muse Studio products, to mark 2011 as the year I joined A Muse Studio as a consultant. It has been a lot of fun, and I am still trying to figure out how far I can grow with that in 2012.

I love Lisa Johnson and I love this stamp set that she designed. And I love the colors in the patterned paper. I had high hopes for papercrafting this Christmas, and those were thwarted around Thanksgiving when my grandmother had some medical issues. This made it tough for me to use so much of what I had bought for Christmas projects this year, but everything is now neatly packed away for the 2012 holiday season. 

I love this card for so many reasons. Dawn at WPlus9 featured it on her blog, which was an exciting honor for me, and it was the card I gave my mom this year. I love the entire In the Meadow set from Papertrey probably more than any other stamp set I own, but paired with Winter Wishes from WPlus9 this card came together so well, I can only atribute it to pure magic. My mom loved it so much that she turned around and requested 75 of them for her holiday card for next year...I am still hunting for more of those rhinestone snowflakes, but Two Peas received quite the order from me for Basic Grey Nordic Holiday papers last week. LOL!

This was really fun for me to do. I enjoyed seeing how my style has differed over the last year, and how my photography skills improved, if ever so slightly. Maybe that's something to work on even more in 2012.
What are your plans for New Year's Eve? Eric and I are going out for dinner, and I will probably go to see my grandmother with Teddy.

Happy New Year, everyone!



wplus9 winter card

I admit to using a Valentine's stamp set to make this holiday card! If you look closely you'll see that the trees are the hearts found in WPlus9's Heartfelt Mix stamp set...and the ground and the stumps are the clothesline and clothespin images, respectively, from the same set! The sentiment comes from their Winter Wishes collection.

I stamped the images using A Muse Studio inks in Grass and Nutmeg; the sentiment was stamped using Raspberry Fizz from PTI. The patterned papers are from October Afternoon's Holiday Style line and Bitty Box Basics from PTI (top pink edge). I added the rhinestones and twine and called it a night!

As Christmas gets closer I am kind of sad that I will have to put away all my holiday stuff, but happy that my Heartfelt Mix will still be used as we get closer to Valentine's Day.

I hope all your holiday preparations are coming together smoothly and that you have a wonderful time this weekend with your family and friends!

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Merry Christmas, crafty friends!

I just wanted to share a card that I made with all of my crafty friends in mind, and wish you all a wonderful Christmas and happy New Year! I can't tell you how happy it makes me that you visit this blog and leave me such sweet notes, and for that I thank you! You're all so good to me!

Special thanks to all the members of the Ribbon Carousel DT, who have warmly welcomed me with open arms this year... You're all an inspiration and you make me laugh each and every day. To Jessica, Christina, Renee and all the other Paper Dolls: you're all the BEST and I'm so glad I have met you! Love you all and wish you all the best in 2012!

For this card, I used Cosmo Cricket's Mitten Weather paper and SU!'s new set called Bright Hopes, as well as a gorgeous flourish die from MFT. The ribbon is the Red/Ivory Check ribbon by May Arts, sold at Ribbon Carousel:

The red rhinestones are Swarovski Jolee's Jewels and they have to be attached with glue, which is kind of a pain, but the extra sparkle is SO worth the effort. And I have to find more of those snowflake rhinestones from Memory Box because I love them! There is no such thing as too much bling.

Pretty much all of the cards have been mailed and now I am entering cookie baking mode, so if you have any recipes you'd love to share, I'd love to have 'em. :)

Supplies: Stamps: SU! (Bright Hopes); Paper: Bazzill (Red), Cosmo Cricket (Mitten Weather), PTI (Vintage Cream); Ink: A Muse Studio (Cherry & Evergreen), PTI (chammomile tea dye); Other: Jolees Jewels (red Swarovskis), Memory Box snowflake rhinestone, PTI Mat Stack & banner dies, sewing machine, Gingham Ribbon, MFT (Flourish die)



ribbon carousel sale!

Big news!

The 8-Post Ribbon Carousel is on sale BIGTIME this weekend for $47.95...normally it's priced at $80 so I just placed my order. I've convinced myself that it's my Christmas gift to me from the dog. LOL!

What is the Ribbon Carousel? Check it out:

Maybe your New Year's resolution is to clean up all the loose ribbon you've collected over the years or to organize your craft room so you can actually see all of your supplies. Then this is perfect! I can't wait to wrap all my twine on it. I love that it's fairly narrow at about 7 inches square, so it won't take up much space. You'll probably want to pick up some wooden spools as well as some Valentine's ribbon while you're at it.

Corinna swears that this is the lowest she'll ever price these Carousels... ;) and the sale ends Sunday night.

I'll post pics of mine after I set it up.  :)

Ok. Back to making my Christmas cards. I've been going for nearly 8 hours today...


RCC #33

Danielle Daws, one of our resident CAS geniuses, is challenging you to use some twine on your creation this week! Any kind of twine is fine, just be sure to add some to your creation!

Who better to sponsor a twine challenge than Whisker Graphics Divine Twine?! One lucky random participant in this week's challenge, which will run for 2 weeks, will win their choice of 2 spools of twine.
Here is what I came up with this week, using Oyster Baker's Twine from Whisker Graphics, sold here at Ribbon Carousel:

I {LoVe} this Nordic Holiday paper from Basic Grey! I paired it with images from two different stamps sets: In the Meadow from Papertrey Ink (tree, sled) and Winter Wishes (medallion, sentiment) from WPlus9. I stamped the medallion from Winter Wishes in VersaMark without masking the tree because I wanted it to look like the tree itself was glowing rather than having the medallion look like a sunrise or sunset behind the tree. Plus, I really wanted the detail of the stamp to be seen.

The Swiss dots embossing folder from Cuttlebug is one of my favorite crafting supplies and it really helped to give some dimension to the vellum on this card. The remaining images were stamped using A Muse Studio inks in Cranberry and Eucalyptus.

Hopefully you can find some time to relax and make something twiney for this week's challenge - we'd love to have you! For all the details, please visit the Ribbon Carousel Challenge Blog here.

Supplies: Stamps: In the Meadow (PTI), Winter Wishes (WPlus9); Paper: Nordic Holiday (Basic Greay), red cardstock (SU!); Ink: Versamark, Cranberry & Eucalyptus (A Muse Studio); Other: Oyster Twine, Mat Stack, In the Meadow, and Snow Drift Dies (PTI), snowflake rhinestone (Memory Box), Janome Sew Mini

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WMSC #77

Today I am playing along in the Waltzingmouse Sketch Challenge using a WMS image from their 2011 Holiday Ornaments stamp set.

I diecut the tree from some Crate Paper holiday paper using an A Muse Studio die, and then I layered the tree over a piece of vellum that was embossed with Papertrey's polka dot impression plate and then attached it all to a piece of Sugar shimmer cardstock from A Muse Studio.

I wrapped some red baker's twine at the top and then stamped and embossed the sentiment at the bottom. Lastly, added some Swarovski rhinestones for maximum *bling* effect!

I might be making more of these - it was so easy! Thanks for stopping by my blog - I hope you have a wonderful weekend!

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shadow box decoration

Sorry for not posting any Three for Thursday yesterday. I have been busy working on this project for my grandmother, who we call Nonna Nina. She has Alzheimer's and is moving to assisted living this weekend. My mom found some old photos at her house and asked me to make something for the 8x10" shadow box that hangs outside her new place, so I got to work. :)

This is first scrapbook-like thing I have ever worked on, and it took a tremendous amount of time. Choosing the photos alone was difficult because I didn't want to cut them up too much, but I also wanted to display a good balance of the people in Nonna's life. And thus, I have a new respect for scrapbookers. I swear I could have made all my Christmas cards in the time it took me to do this...but it was so worth it. I love how this came out.

All of the papers are from Echo Park's Country Drive collection, with some add-ons (like the corner stickers) from A Walk in the Park. Their papers are so beautiful. I chose them because the color scheme is bright and cheery, and because my Nonna loves these colors.

All the stamping for this project was done using Papertrey Ink's Love Lives Here set, along with the coordinating die cuts. The houses were stamped using Pebble and Blush ink from A Muse Studio. I think glittered some Raspberry Fizz cardstock and attached it to the back of each house so the hearts would show through the little windows. I cut some extra hearts for the top of the page as well; I love how the glitter tones down the boldness of the Raspberry Fizz cardstock. I also diecut some clouds using PTI's cloud dies; I used their Vintage Cream cardstock and dry embossed them with the Linen impression plate.

In case your wondering, I chose these three photos because the top photo is a picture of Nonna with my grandfather, Nonno. The photo on the bottom right is a shot of her with my mom and her two brothers. The photo on the bottom left is a photo of Nonna (back row, in the middle) with her mom and sisters and a niece - and that's me in my great-grandmother's, Nonna Santa's, lap. :)

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christmas decorating at home

Just a couple of quick shots of my Christmas decorating at home this weekend. If you've seen these on Facebook already, sorry to overload you...but I am just so happy about how it all came out this year.

It's the first time I have decorated the stairs. I made these using supplies from Michael's; I got the idea for these from Pinterest:

We put up a real Christmas tree this year. I think part of me needed the extra Christmas "boost" of the scent of a tree when I get home at night; my heart can be heavy after visiting Nonna after work.

Every year I buy more ornaments for the tree; this year I was able to add the CUTEST knit wool sweater ornaments in a variety of colors and I just love them. If you look closely you might be able to see them. The fake tree is too tall for the star topper, which was a gift from my mom, and we don't use the garland because it's embellished with pine cones and berries...so I love how this real tree came out this year because I could use some things we haven't seen in a while. And it smells so wonderful!

If only I could be as productive making my Christmas cards...

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waltzingmouse christmas tag challenge

I am back from my very fun crafty get-together with Jessica Davis and Christina MacLaren where I made a tag for the Waltzingmouse Christmas Tag Challenge....cross your fingers that I am the randomly selected winner of the awesome prize for this one {{pretty please}}!

I used some prestamped ornament die cuts that Renee Lynch made for me using Santa's Coming to Town...isn't this such a gorgeous stamp? I normally don't go for vintage-style images, but this really is beautiful. I am glad it pairs well with the October Afternoon Holiday Style paper too:

I mounted everything on a pink tag diecute from A Muse Studio paper, which was then dry embossed with a snowflake Cuttlebug folder. I finished it all off with some A Muse Studio rhinestones, SU! hat pins, this beautiful ribbon and this twine from Ribbon Carousel...and if you haven't tried the Bow Easy for making your bows, you should. It saves me so much time because I don't have to fuss with the ribbon at all.

I hope you're enjoying your weekend so far...tomorrow my goal is to put up the Christmas tree!

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three for thursday

I am getting the hang of making cards with chipboard and stickers after last night's crafting session, so here are three of my creations using Echo Park's Season's Greetings Collection:

The cardstock bases are Vintage Cream from Papertrey Ink and the bells and seam binding ribbon were a wonderful present from Renee, but you can find the bells at pretty much any craft store and Ribbon Carousel sells seam binding ribbon as well. The red bling is from Recollections and the red twine is from Ribbon Carousel.

The red and green plaid is one of my most favorite papers ever! I added some gold Martha Stewart glitter to the stars on top of the trees on this next card:

That's it for today! How are your Christmas cards coming along? I am hoping to get way more done this Saturday at a get-together with Jessica Davis and Christina MacLaren...I absolutely cannot wait!

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