Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Happy Holidays!

Happy Holidays from all of us at the Pursuit of Craftyness. We are spending time enjoying the holidays with family and will be taking a short vacation from our blog. However, we'll be back after the holidays. Many holiday blessing to each of you.

Thursday, December 18, 2008

My name is Miki and I'm a link-a-holic.

Yes, I collect links. Links to everything & anything that I love on the internet. My favorites, folders & desktop are filled with links. Most of them are links to crafts that I would love to do someday. I have enough cute craft links to last me a lifetime. There's just too many talented people out there who are willing to share their craftiness with others!

So I thought I would put some of these links I have collected to good use. I thought maybe our readers would like some links to easy, last-minutes holiday gift ideas. If your a crafter, then chances are pretty good you might have the supplies on hand for some of these. But if not, I did try to keep the list to supplies you could find locally.

Here's what you'll find in my list of crafty links:

1. Had to be quick & easy.
2. Needed minimal supplies that were (hopefully) easy to find.
3. Couldn't cost a fortune.
4. Anyone could do them!

I thought I would start off with some food gift links. Who doesn't love receiving yummy treats during the holidays? Some of these are perfect for doing with your kids too!

Homemade Toffee from French Knots

Check out the adorable packaging on this one! Homemade Peppermint Bark from Martha Stewart

Chocolate Dipped Candy Canes from Make and Takes

These are way too cute! Oreo Cookie Snowmen from According to Kelly

I made this one this past weekend & it really is yummy! Funky Monkey Bread from Mish Mash

Marshmallow Snowmen from Speckled Egg

Here are some crafty gifts to make that you could use your scrap supplies for.

Stamped Dish Towels from Design Sponge

Framed Paper from JCaroline

Marble Magnets by Not Martha

This one uses fabric, but you could easily use scrapbook paper too! Decorated Office Supplies from How About Orange

I don't know about you, but this would take me hours...HOURS to do myself. And that's assuming I could figure out what images I wanted before Christmas was even here. Totally worth the $5 price! Print and Give 2009 Mini Calender from Little Brown Pen

If you can sew, then you might want to check these out. These wouldn't be quick & easy for me, but in case you can sew in a jiffy, you might like these.

These first two are downloadable (is that even a word?) patterns I found. Super cute and well worth the pattern cost if you make a few.
Wristlet PDF Sewing Pattern by Jenna Lou Designs

City Tote PDF Sewing Pattern by keykalou

Ribbon Key Fob from JCaroline

I made some of these last year and you don't have to be an expert to sew them (I promise!). They are also a great way to use up fabric scraps. Raggedy Quilted Coasters

And for us slow-sewers or non-sewers, here are a few no-sew patterns I found.

This one is fabulous! Simple but Chic, no-sew scarf by Little Birdie Secret

No Sew Fleece Blanket & Pillow from Joanns

Tiny Pincushions from How About Orange

These final ones are just plain fun!

This one would be perfect for your kids to make & give to Grandparents, Teachers or anyone else! Doodled Notepad from Martha Stewart

Baby Onesie from Joanns

Easy Wine Glass Charms from Not Martha

I want to make these just to have sitting on my counter in their pretty jars! Homemade Bath Salts from Martha Stewart

Fabric Fridge Frame from How About Orange

Hopefully I didn't just waste your whole day surfing the net oohing & awwing over these great gift ideas. I seriously could go on & on with these links. But I am hoping that it will maybe solve a last minute gift idea or maybe help with that hard to buy for person on your list.

Enjoy this great list of links and don't forget to check out the list of tutorials we've done here (and there's been some really great ones!). You can find it right there down the right side of our blog.

A big THANK YOU to all the crafters out there who share their talents with us over the internet each day!!

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Christmas past & present...

I just love this time of year and always feel so inspired to create! I thought I'd just share a bunch of creations today some I created this year and some from a few years back. :0)

I found these 3 plaques for $1, they were green and gold with hideous flowers, lol. I painted over the green with crackle medium and white paint, added some Webster's Pages paper, chipboard letters covered in glitter and now have them sitting over my fireplace mantel. ;)

Next is a little tin ($1 again) that I added Jenni Bowlin paper, a bird image (Cavilinni paper co.), Melissa Frances sticker and a little nest. Perfect for dislaying or giving a treat in.

A card a treat bag set using Crafty Secrets vintage images, Queen & Co. felt, stickles, and glassine bags.

And lastly a tree from last year, this was in Paper Trends. I took a tree form and sprayed it with glitter. I wrapped it in various Queen & Co. felts and added rhinestones. The base is actually a Pringles can wrapped in sugar coated cardstock.

Thanks for stopping by. Wishing you a wonderful holiday. :)


Monday, December 8, 2008

Coloring with Pastels is a Hoot!

I know I'm probably the last person in the scrapbook world to actually do this, but I just recently discoverd how fun it is to color stamped images with pastel chalk. What is so unbelievable is that I have owned pastel chalks for about 3 years. I have tried to color things in the past, but using Q-tip type applicators never did the trick for me. In my previous crafty-life, I was an avid watercolorist, and loved the fine tips on expensive watercolor brushes. I could get color in the tiniest places with one of those brushes. So - I quickly abandoned using chalks. That is until recently.

I recently got my hands on a Stampin Up blender pen, and with a little instruction, I learned that you can use the blender pen just like a watercolor brush. Boy, was I excited to try this. Now, the technique doesn't look exactly like watercolor, and the chalk technique gives an imperfect look, but with all the distressing I do - it suits me just fine.

I made some step by step photos to show you how easy it is. Even tho most of you probably already know this, maybe you can just smile and say "Atta girl" as you read.

You will need:
-Chalk Pallete
-Smooth Cardstock
-Dye Ink
-Stampin Up Blender Pen

Stamp your image on cardstock.

To color, dip the end of the blender pen into chalk cake.

Apply directly to your stamped image. Apply more chalk if you want the color to be more saturated. For less color, scribble your blender pen on scrap paper until desired tint is achieved.

To clean the tip before changing colors, scribble on scrap paper until pen no longer shows color when used.

That's it!! This is so simple and gives the effect of watercolor quick and easy.

I trimmed my stamped image and used it on this card.

Supplies: Owl Together Now Stamp Set; Very Vanilla and Craft Cardstock, Bella Rose Designer Patterned Papers, Chocolate Chip and Riding Hood Red Ink, Stampin Pastels, Baja Breeze Striped Grosgrain Ribbon, Blender Pen (All from Stampin Up). Other Supplies: Button, Candle Wicking Thread, and Martha Stewart Border Punch

And, well, I couldn't stop creating. I had to make another card.

Supplies: Owl Together Now Stamp Set; Very Vanilla Cardstock, Bella Rose Designer Patterned Papers, Chocolate Chip and Old Olive Ink, Stampin Pastels, Blender Pen (All from Stampin Up). Other Supplies: Button, Jute, Martha Stewart Border Punch, Worldwin Cardstock, Cricut Die Cut Tag

What I like about this technique is the ability to color my images but not have them screaming "look at me". I love markers, too, but sometimes I want the color to be more subtle without having to purchase all the various colors and hues in the marker world. I like the ability to apply the color soft and muted..... pastel and chalky - just like their name.

I hope you have been inspired today. For those of you going "You are just now learning that technique" - well, maybe you have some secrets you can share with me. I'll all ears. Have a wonderful day and thanks for stopping by.

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Mini Albums can be QUICK and EASY!

Take a little photo shoot with some Christmas accessories and a few supplies and you can have a quick and easy gift or remembrance of a Holiday.

I just love putting together a mini album. I love that it is usually centered around one theme or occasion and it doesn't have to have a whole lot of photos to still pack the "wow" factor.
I started with a very simple paper mache' accordian album by Melissa Frances. All of my supplies were from my I Am A Scrapaholic November club kit. I love kit clubs because someone else has done all of the work to put supplies together that match and go together. All I need to do now is sit down and use them.
I wanted this album to be very simple in style so I used a large photo for each fold in the accordian. Then I only had to add one piece of patterned paper to each fold, adding the photo on top of that. I kept the front very simple with mostly my photo being the focus.
My main decoration is the first, inside page. The chipboard snowflake was coated with Platinum Stickles and I put a swath of white paint on the patterned paper so that my rhinestone word, Wonder, would show up against the patterned paper.
I didn't want any journaling but I did use alphabet stickers and some rub-on accents to be my finishing touches on the pages.

Thank you for visiting Pursuit Of CraftYness, Linda
Materials list:
4”x6” Paper Mache’ Foldout book/Melissa Frances
Rhinestone word WONDER – KaiserCraft
Patterned papers – SEI Alpine Frost collection
Printed Poinsettia – Making Memories
Glitter alphabet stickers – Making Memories
Glitter flourish sticker – K&Co.
Journaling sticker – American Crafts
Chipboard snowflake – My Little Yellow Bicycle
Platinum Stickles - Ranger
Ric-Rac trim
White paint

Monday, December 1, 2008

It's Beginning to Look Alot Like Christmas...

everywhere around my home! I can't believe that we are just 24 days away from Christmas! This weekend I started pulling all the holiday decorations out. It's a massive job. And to add to the decorations this year....I decided to add another Christmas tree to our home. And that's to our 4 or 5 others we already put around!!

Each year even though my house is filled head to toe with holiday decorations...I'm always anxious to make some new ones for the house. This year I decided it was time to make on of the big stars for my front door.

Here's what you'll need:

5 papers of your choice - I used Bo Bunny Believe papers
Mod Podge
Large Tin Star
Stickles Glitter
Colorbox Chalk Inks

To start I use a thin piece of paper to create a template. I run my hand along the edge of the paper to crease it to the shape of the star. Then I cut this shape out for a template for the star. Next it's important to decide how the papers should be positioned and what point of the star it will look best on. Then trace the template onto the backside of the paper. Once the papers are traced, it's time to adhere them. I add a coating of Mod Podge to the star and then onto the paper. Once glued, I press the paper onto star smoothing it out as I go. Once all the points are glued I then ink the edges with Colorbox Chalk inks.

For this star since it was a holiday one with snowflakes and such I thought some touches of glitter would be nice. I used Stickles in white and green to add little of sparkle to the various papers.

Then for the last step I coated the entire star with another layer of Mod Podge to seal it. When'll have a beautiful holiday decoration to hang over your fireplace or on your front door! The possibilities are endless!

Happy Holidays to you!