Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Pure Eye Candy.....and Happy Thanksgiving!

I can hardly believe that Thanksgiving is tomorrow! How did the holidays come upon us so quickly?! Since we are all busy prepping for the holiday, I figured I would make this a "eye candy" post that requires very little ready and a lot of "ooohing and awwwing".

Altered wooden pumpkin by Stacey Stamitoles

Paper Basket by Julia Sandvoss

Tussie Mussie by Sherry Wright

Popping Thank you Tin by Julia Sandvoss

We want to wish all of you a very Happy Thanksgiving! If you have questions about any of the projects you see here, please comment or email us at pocdesigners at gmail dot com. We'll be happy to help! We will be taking off the next few days from posting so we can be with our friends and family but we will be back with some great holiday gift ideas as well as projects using our next sponsors' product (Imaginisce & Cosmo Cricket).

Also, we have had generous donations from both Glue Arts and Imaginisce so we wanted to pass along this info to our Pursuit of CraftYness readers...

Friday, November 20, 2009

Fall Pumpkins..Just in Time!

Happy Fall!

Thanksgiving is just one week away however there's still time to make some fall crafts! Perhaps for you Thanksgiving Table or to take for a Hostess gift!

Right now the craft stores have their fall crafts and decorations on sale so it's a great time to head out for some of the supplies seen here today!

Fabric Wrapped Pumpkin
Designer - Julia Sandvoss

Craft Pumpkin
Ormolu "Thanksgiving" Paper Chains
Cricut Diecut Machine - StoryBook Cartridge
Glue Glider Pro Adhesive by Glue Arts
Bo Bunny Flutter Butter Paper
Green Raffia
Colorbox Chalk Ink Olive Pastel
Hot Glue Gun

1) Measure and try out sizes of fabric before cutting. Tie fabric with raffia to secure around pumpkin. Insert straight pins into pumpkin at top to secure into pumpkin.

2) Use Hot Glue Gun to adhere paper chains around pumpkin.

3) Cut out leaves using Die Cut machine or hand cut. Ink edges and leaves before adding to pumpkin. Use Pro Glue Glider and glue leaves onto pumpkin.

4) Cut a small piece from Flutter Butter paper...about 4 by 6. Roll and bend to form stem. Ink edges and hot glue to top of pumpkin.

Fall Cornucopia

Designer - Julia Sandvoss

Cornucopia Basket from Michael's
Fall Fruits & Stems from Michael's
Martha Stewart Glitter - Heliodor & Golden Beryl
Styrofoam Block
Basket Filler
Wood Wire Picks
Hot Glue Gun

1) First hot glue wood wire picks onto bottoms of fall fruits, pumpkins, pinecones and such that you're going to use. Once a few items to glitter.
2) Using Martha Stewart glitter glue paint the items that you plan to glitter. Use a glitter tray or paper plate under your item. Heavily glitter items shaking excess onto tray. Return excess glitter to's too pretty and expensive to waste! Allow items to set.
3) Insert styrofoam block into basket. Trim to fit so it covers the basket inside opening.
4) Start adding fall picks, fruit and pumpkin picks keeping shorter items in front.
5) Add in basket fill to cover any open spots.
6) Tie raffia around basket. Hot glue leaves onto front.

Fabric Stuffed Pumpkin
Designer - Julia Sandvoss

Poly Filler
Pumpkin Stem
Bo Bunny Flutter Butter Paper
Pro Glue Glider Adhesive by Glue Arts
Cricut Die Cut Machine - Accent Essentials Cartridge
Straight Pins
Hot Glue Gun
Colorbox Chalk Inks - Olive Pastel

1)Pick a fall fabric. Cut about a 16 by 16 inch square. I placed the poly fill in the center of the fabric first, wrapped it up and then saw how much fabric I needed before cutting.
2)Once you have cut the fabric, fold and wrap it to create a pumpkin shape. I secured it at the top with pins. You're welcome to use a sewing machine.
3)Cut a base piece for the stem to sit on out of the paper. I traced a shape slightly larger than the pumpkin stem.
3) Then Hot Glue the stem to the paper base and the base to the fabric.
4) Cut out 11 2-3 inch leaves leaves using die cut machine. You can hand cut these too. Ink edges and adhere to paper base.
5)Cut 5 smaller 1 1/2 inch leaves, ink edges, crimp a bit and then adhere to leaves.
6) Tie raffia around stem.

Happy Fall!! and Thanksgiving to You!!

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

A Christmas PHOTO CARD!!

Instead of using a traditional 'family' Christmas photo this year, try looking around at your holiday decorations for a fun spin on the Photo Christmas Card!

My home is full of primitive decorations (starting on the day after Thanksgiving...I can't wait!!). I have this antique trencher (wooden bowl) on my dining room table, that I fill with primitive boughs of evergreens with pinecones and antiqued jingle bells. I added these adorable primitive stuffed gingerbread men (I got this idea at my FAVORITE store ever... Things Made Wonderful in Rhode Island).

Last year, as I was walking around the house taking photos of some of the holiday decor, I decided to take a photo of these 2 guys...and see what I could come up with using this adorable photo.

It was so easy to come up with the idea of incorporating the photo into a 'From Both of Us' Christmas Card!

I simply created my card base, added a distressed patterned paper for the background, added the photo and embellished! Easy and (I think) just so darn cute!

So, this year, after you've finished decorating your home for the holidays, grab your camera and see what inspires YOU to create a card! A couple of snowmen standing side by side would make a cute 'From Both of Us' card. Or assemble several figurines (angels, snowmen, elves, etc) to create a family photo!! Have fun and Happy Holidays!

Title: From Both of Us 5-1/2" X 5-1/2"

Cardstock: The Cardstock Stack, Die Cuts With a View
Patterned paper: Dreams; Believe Set, BoBunny
Die cuts: FaLaLa; Die-cut Journaling Stickers, Making Memories
Chipboard: Stars; Chipboard Shapes, Making Memories
Button: Apple Green; All Stuck Up Buttons, BoBunny
Brad: Apple Green; All Stuck Up Brads, BoBunny
Flower: The Bitty Bag, Prima Marketing
Computer font: 2Peas YoYo,
Photo corners: Canson
Photo: Dee Gallimore-Perry


Saturday, November 14, 2009

Gratitude Journal

We keep Thanksgiving pretty simple in our home. It's just the four of us but we all look forward to a day of being together with no other commitments, good food and later that afternoon a trip to the movies. It's become a tradition we all enjoy. To add to that day, I've been wanting create a holiday keepsake that as a family we could contribute to each Thanksgiving. I thought it might be nice if this year I created a gratitude journal. I think it's important to keep it simple so that it's not a chore but instead a small activity to do together before the meal. My plan is for each family member to have a page with their photo and a simple journal entry from them about what they are thankful for and anything else they'd like to share that year. No rules, no fuss...just a moment to record how we are grateful for all that we have together as a family.

Since I've yet to make a fabric covered mini album/journal, I saw this as my chance to give it whirl. I also wanted to play around with stamping on fabric and mixing paper with fabric and trim in a fun way.
To make the cover and back of the journal, I cut 2 - 6"x8" pieces of thin chipboard. It's important that it be thin enough to machine stitch through and to add eyelets. I also cut 2 - 6"x8" pieces of fusible fleece to give the cover a little bit of a quilted look. I cut the fabric larger (2 - 8" x 10" pieces of muslin) and then stamped my images onto the fabric.

I layered the fusible fleece onto the back of the fabric and ironed the stamped side to secure the fleece. This also heat set the ink in the process. I added my thin chipboard to the back of the fleece and wrapped the excess fabric around the edges and corners. I added a few stitches at the corners to tighten the wrap and further secure the fabric from slipping.

Once all the corners were done, I machine stitched 1/8" around the edge of each piece (front and back covers) twice.

At this point, I created a few embellishments to dress up my journal.
-The paper flower: The leaves were punched, inked, distressed and machine stitched in place. The flower is a stack of graduated punched circles that were also inked and distressed. I layered and adhered them together slightly off-center so that the different patterns and colors could still show through. I used a paper pierce tool to punch holes in the center and added the button with embroidery thread with a large needle tying the thread behind the chipboard.

-The mini blue ribbon flower: This is made using regular thread and needle stitching along one edge of the length of ribbon - about 2 1/2" long. Then gather the thread to cinch the ribbon into a circular shape. I adhered it to the cover with an adhesive square and added the gem to the center.

-The lace trim: With this I weaved the 3/8" wide ribbon through the lace, wrapped it around the cover and machine stitched across the center of the ribbon several times to secure it in place.
-The heart stamp: I created a stamp like square with pattern papers and scallop decorative scissors. I stitched it onto the cover and added punches and other embellishments.
I also added other buttons, a decorative brad to the mix as well as the printed strips of cardstock.

Once my embellishments were complete, I covered the back side of each cover with a 6" x 8" piece of cardstock to hide all the stitching and brad prongs. I adhered this with the permanent adhesive squares.

I punched holes in both the front and back covers and added red eyelets for the binder rings as well a few orange 1/8" eyelets just for fun. I kept the back cover simple with stamping only and the red eyelets for the binder rings, but this could also be more embellished if you choose. I tied several ribbon strips - each about 6" long - to the top binder ring.

The pages are slightly less than 6" x 8" and have holes punched in alignment to fit the rings. In the example page I'll be using for my own entry, I kept the decorating to a minimum. I adhered a piece of black cardstock (a bit larger than wallet size) as my photo mat and stamped journaling lines as well as adding a few paper accents to brighten it up.

As I've mentioned, each family member will get a page to decorate. I'll place the black cardstock photo mat and add the stamped journal lines but otherwise they can decorate and embellish as they like. It can be short and sweet or as elaborate as they please. I'm certain my kids will have a field day adding all sorts of things whereas my husband will keep it pretty simple.

I'm looking forward to one day looking back at this journal when we have several years' worth of entries. I think it will be a treat to especially see how the kids' entries change and grow. I know it will be something I treasure and hopefully will become a new Thanksgiving tradition for our family.

Supply List:
October Afternoon - Weathervane patterned papers
Bo Bunny - SWAK iCandy Brad
Bazzill - Kraft cardstock
Clearsnap Chalk Ink - Bisque, Ice Blue, Chestnut Roan
Staz-On Ink - Timber Brown (or textile ink)
Glue Arts - Permanent Adhesive Squares (these worked great with the fabric!)
Muslin or other cotton fabric: 2 - 8 x 10 pieces
Fusible Fleece; fabric trim/lace; ribbon; eyelets; assorted buttons; 3 binder rings; gems; mini brads; black embroidery thread

Bo Bunny - Fancy Frills and Write On! Acrylic Stamps
Fiskars Americas - Round 'n Round, That's Amore and Mint Condition Squeeze Punches; Scallop Paper Edger Scissors and Eyelet Hole Punch/Setters

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Use up the "old stuff" to build a stash of cards...

Just a few weeks ago, I bought a birthday card to send to a friend! *gasp* I guess it had been some time since I had actually bought one. I could not believe I was about to pay over 3.00 for a card!
At that very moment, I decided I had to use up some of my older supplies and build my stash of homemade cards. (And it is a good excuse to escape from the laundry and just go create a card when the inspiration hits.)

This is the most recent card I have created using older supplies and "scraps". Nothing on this card was purchased in the past year- nada! In fact, I think the EK Success straight pin is about 5 years old (or older...shhhhhh) and the rub-on is close to 4 years old. It felt great to go to the older stuff and have fun with it; try it, you just might like it!

A little tid bit about this card that you may not be able to see...nothing terribly exciting or ground breaking but....go with it! (ha ha) Basically, I made my own "bias tape" for the card. I'm what you call a wanna-be-a-sewer and other than REALLY simple stuff, I have kept my sewing "talent" confined to paper. (ha!) In fact, I'm not even certain that its called "bias tape"'s a hunch. ;-) The card base is made from kraft cardstock and the pink edges were scored and the card edges were sewn into the pink paper fold along the top and bottom. Each of the strips was also sewn onto the front.
Supplies: Kraft cardstock: unknown; Pattern Paper by My Minds Eye; Flower: Prima; Straight pin by EK Success; Rubon by DCWV; lace: unknown; Ink: Tim Holtz Distress Ink by Ranger Industries; Adhesive by Glue Arts (Glue Glider Pro with High Tac cartridge)

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Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Pre-holiday Tin Idea

Here is a cute preholiday altered idea for you! I love these little rolled cookies- and definately consider them holiday fare. So if you have a container like this- or something similar- here is a way to reuse it.

I took the liner out of the inside- and after inking the edges, I added it around the container. Glue Arts was so generous with the Pursuit of Craftyness team, I used their Glue Glider Pro gun to stick everything on! There was even a bottom liner that I used on the top of the lid as well.

I received some Basic Grey in a package from Cards Mag( Indian Summer)- so of course- I wanted to play with some new stuff! My sister Kelly came down for a visit and gifted me with this fab felt border package-( Michaels). I cut one strip in half for the top and bottom borders. I added in this funky lime green cardstock as well.

I cut a circle of the dark brown, then added punched circles to make a large flower. I added some BG leaf and letter stickers. Then a button with the twine I wrapped around the container. And a couple extra craft supply buttons.

For the perfect finishing touches- I went back to my Bobunny supplies, and found the is my favorite sticker, plus the bracket sticker layered with the colorful tag on the tin lid. I added more buttons and finished with a mulberry flower from a silk flower I took apart.
what to do with this tin? fill it with yummy chocolates, homemade goodies or a tall candle. gift it to a friend, teacher, neighbor, or coworker, or keep it for yourself!