Pages

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

From die cut machine to HUGE banner + Tutorial!

One of the many things I created for my #1DS and DIL's wedding party in October was a huge 8 foot banner (approximate size). The party was on our screened porch/pool area and I really wanted to dress up the porch with lots of fun visual details. Of course, I browsed Pinterest every chance I got to find inspiration.


I found the saying on Pinterest painted on a small canvas that was framed in wood. Loved the saying, but I wanted a large banner...oh what was I to do?

I spent many, many hours thinking how exactly to create this. I knew my Expression could make a freezer paper stencil, but the largest mat is 12" x 24".  Yep, I had one of those.

Using the Cricut Craft Room, I created a file to make a stencil. I cut the freezer paper to the size of my mat and cut the stencil.
 
Freezer paper cuts very nicely with the Cricut. Peel the paper gently off the mat. Make sure to save all your pieces...the outer paper is the "stencil" but you'll also need the letters and little inside pieces.



Press the shiny side of the freezer paper to the fabric (I used bleached muslin) using a dry iron.  For the letters that have the open areas, like P, B, A, R, etc., you will need the centers, too.

 See in the photo below how the "B" and "R" are missing the centers? That's what needs to get put back.

For letters that need the centers, press the stencil to the fabric, then add the letter. Now use the letter as a guide to place the centers of the letters. In the photo below I am pressing the "O" into the pressed stencil, then I will press the center of the "O", take out the "O" and will now be ready to paint.

 
TIP: Press everything into place and check placement before painting anything. You can lift off the freezer paper that is already pressed, adjust as necessary, then re-press.

TIP: Make sure all the edges of your stencil are pressed well. You don't want any paint to seep under the stencil!!


Protect your work surface with plastic sheeting or similar.
 
Because I didn't care if this banner was ever washed or used again and I didn't need to keep the hand of the fabric soft (the "hand" is the way fabric feels), so I just used regular acrylic paint. I didn't bother to use my good textile paint or any fabric medium.
 
Paint inside all of the letters using a paint brush or sponge brush, whatever you like the best. Start with a little bit of paint on your brush. Pouncing up and down seemed to work better than painting back and forth. It will also help keep paint from seeping under the stencil.


 
 I masked off the edges of my banner with some old Kraft paper that was originally used as packing material. Newspaper would work fine, too. I was deathly afraid that I was going to get paint where I didn't want it. Seems like I'm always battling that!
 

I only used one good coat of paint, but if your project looks like it needs another, let it dry first and then add another coat.
 
Once everything is dry, it's time to peel the stencil from the fabric. I didn't bother trying to save the stencil. It's just thin paper and you can cut another one if you really want to do this again!
 



 
This last step is to heat set your paints. Lay down a piece of parchment paper beneath and on top of your banner and press with an iron. You really don't need to do this unless you will be washing your project. Check the bottle of paint for heat setting instructions. Some will recommend you let it sit for a certain amount of time or heat set with an iron, etc. If you won't be washing your item, you probably won't need this step.
 
 
 
I stitched a little seam at the top so it could hang from a curtain rod. I didn't bother finishing the edges. 
 
 
 It was a big hit at the party. I had people wondering how I did it. (I like that!)


Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Bridal Shower Scrapbook Layout

I'm really on a roll now. Three total layouts for the wedding album! YIPPEE. Hopefully I can keep up the good work. :-)


Basic Grey Sugared Papers, title cut with Cricut Calligraphy Collection cartridge, silk flowers, Maya Road Resin Blossoms, velvet leaves.

All that's left is to journal. :-)

Sunday, January 26, 2014

It's all about the Cupcakes!

I'm working on the wedding scrapbook for my #1DS and DIL. I have just a few layouts done, but I'm making two identical albums...one for them and one for me.  This layout is of the bridal shower. My good friend Yvonne made a cupcake bar for the bridal shower in September. See the post HERE.


 
 
I'm using my really old stash and NOT buying anything new. I've taken the "My Creative Life 2014" challenge. Bazzill cardstock, Basic Grey Sugared papers.

Thursday, January 16, 2014

What's that gentle hum in the background??

Do you hear it? It's really not that gentle of a hum. It's more like a gnawing, grinding sound. It is, of course, my Cricut Expression. I will probably be hearing that sound all day long as I work through my Cricut cartridge (cart), Edge to Edge. I am making stencils from every key on the cart.



 
I'm using some stencil films I have and also cardstock. I am truly loving these images! I can't wait to get creating with them. I'm cutting them at 8" and then will cut them all again at 12" or as large as my Expression will allow (that darn mat cut line!). Stay tuned to see what gorgeous things I'll make with them.
 
Oh, and don't forget to get in on the giveaway. I'm giving away a free seat to my brand new online class, "Cricut: Crafting with Stencils", which begins Jan 27th.
 
Course Description

I love to create art with stencils, especially ones I can make myself using my Cricut machine!
Come join me for this 5-lesson class to learn how to design Cricut Craft Room files and cut stencils using Cricut Cuttables Stencil Material, cardstock, and freezer paper. Students will create astenciled artist canvas, stenciled card backgrounds, and a stenciled fabric item of their choice. Take your crafting to a whole new level!
Students will learn about other stencil materials you can use with your Cricut and will will receive nine CCR files to download and use in class projects. Use any Cricut machine and any cartridge you own. Students must have basic knowledge of their Cricut machine and the Cricut Craft Room (CCR).

Lessons include:

Lesson 1: Introduction and Inspiration
Lesson 2: Designing Cricut Craft Room Files
Lesson 3: Stenciled Artist Canvas using Cricut Cuttables Stencil Material
Lesson 4: Stenciled Master Board for Cards using Cardstock
Lesson 5: Fabric Item Stenciled with Freezer Paper


The course materials and projects in this class are totally new and different from the lessons in "Crafting with the Cricut: Beyond Paper".
 
************************************
Hop on over to the My Creative Classroom blog, My Creative Life 2014 and comment ON THIS POST. There are several ways to increase your chance of winning. Giveaway ends Monday Jan 20th at midnight. Winner will be announced on the My Creative Life 2014 blog in Tuesday Jan 21st. Someone's gonna win...it might as well be you, right?! ;-)

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Creating Stencils with the Cricut + Giveaway!

I love stencils. They really go along nicely with my deep need for lots of paint, and sprays, and inks.... :-) They are great to add to your arsenal of art tools. They are lightweight, flat, and easy to store.



Did you know stencils are super easy to make with your Cricut? I have a made like a "gazillion" stencils with my Cricut cartridges, some straight from the machine and some using the Cricut Craft Room (CCR). The stencils below were made from the Paper Lace cartridge (cart). Every key on that cart makes a wonderful stencil. I usually make mine at 12" x 12" or as large as the Cricut mat will allow.




Another great stencil cart I recently purchased is Edge to Edge. AMAZING!!!
 


I am, at this moment, waiting for my Cricut Expression to finish a firmware update (grrrr!) and then I will be creating a stencil out of each one of these fabulous designs. :-)

You can use stencils with any coloring tool like acrylic paints, fabric paints, spray paints, spray inks, dauber paints, watercolor paints, markers and more. I have lots of ideas for using stencils especially on fabric. Now if I could just find the time for all my ideas!! 

Here's a photo of how I organize my Cricut carts...alphabetically, of course. I like to keep them in the original box with everything all together. But they do take up quite a bit of room. Luckily I have my own craft room (aka the dining room) to house all of my creative passions.


The Solutions and Seasonal carts I keep together in a wire basket. If you're counting, I have about 50 of them. GASP! I didn't think it was that many!
 

Here's a scrapbook layout I just finished today. My #1DS and DIL were married in October of this past year. This marks the first layout completed in 2014 and now I can check off one of many pages I need to make. I'm creating a bridal shower/wedding album for the couple as well as one for me. Exactly the same, so it will be easier on me. My DH asked how long it will take to make the albums, thinking I'd be done in a week or so. I told him that if I finish within this year I'll be happy! He was rather surprised. LOL!! :-)

 
I was originally going to use the stencil below for the layout, but it just didn't end up looking the way I wanted it to. My DIL is a graphic designer and likes things very straight, structural and architectural.


Spraying through stencils can sometimes give you hazy images and letters like in the photo below. This would be fine for me, but the way my DIL likes things it needs to be more crisp and not so grungy. I'm tying to keep things to her liking. But I'm afraid it won't be all that easy!!



I have a brand new online Cricut class starting January 27th. Bet'cha can't guess the topic?? You're right - STENCILS!! On the My Creative Classroom blog, My Creative Life 2014, I am offering a free seat to the class, "Cricut: Crafting with Stencils" to one lucky winner. Head on over to THIS POST and get in on the drawing. There are extra ways to increase your chances of winning! Giveaway ends Monday Jan 20th at midnight. I'll post a winner on the My Creative Life 2014 blog on Tuesday Jan 21st.

Just in case you don't win the free seat, make sure to register for class. It begins on Monday Jan 27th and it is sure to be a crowd pleaser! If you're the winner and you've already registered, we'll refund your tuition. So you really can't lose!



Course Description

I love to create art with stencils, especially ones I can make myself using my Cricut machine!
Come join me for this 5-lesson class to learn how to design Cricut Craft Room files and cut stencils using Cricut Cuttables Stencil Material, cardstock, and freezer paper. Students will create a stenciled artist canvas, stenciled card backgrounds, and a stenciled fabric item of their choice. Take your crafting to a whole new level!

Students will learn about other stencil materials you can use with your Cricut and will receive nine CCR files to download and use in class projects. Use any Cricut machine and any cartridge you own. Students must have basic knowledge of their Cricut machine and the Cricut Craft Room (CCR).

Lessons include:

Lesson 1: Introduction and Inspiration
Lesson 2: Designing Cricut Craft Room Files
Lesson 3: Stenciled Artist Canvas using Cricut Cuttables Stencil Material
Lesson 4: Stenciled Master Board for Cards using Cardstock
Lesson 5: Fabric Item Stenciled with Freezer Paper


The course materials and projects in this class are totally new and different from the lessons in my previous class, "Crafting with the Cricut: Beyond Paper".



Wednesday, January 8, 2014

Valentine's Mini Book with Square 1 Masterpiece Printable

I love to create things with fabric. I think I like it better than paper! I don't have too large of a fabric stash...yet, but give me a little while and I'm sure it will grow! ;-)

I recently created a small mixed media Valentine book using fabric, paper and Square 1 Masterpiece Inkjet Printable.  

The book pages are about 6" x 6" with Fusible Stabilizer as a base and fabric covering both sides. I printed out some clip art photos onto Square 1 Masterpiece Inkjet Printable media.


This stuff is great as it goes right through your home inkjet printer, prints a great image and it is adhesive-backed. So even if you don't want to sew a single stitch, you can still have the look of printed fabric on your projects.


Front cover: 
Image printed onto Square 1, decorative tulle as background, pink rickrack, floral trim.
 
Pages 1 & 2:
Images printed onto Square1, papers, trims, flowers, stickers, etc. 
 
Pages 3 & 4:
Images printed onto Square 1, decorative tulle, fabric, trims, stickers, transparency over felt. 
 
Pages 5 & 6:
Images printed onto Square 1, papers, decorative tulle, silk and paper flowers, dimensional paint
 .
 Back cover:
Images printed onto Square 1, decorative tulle, trims, silk flowers, acrylic heart embellishment.

 
The book is bound with book rings and tied with decorative tulle and ribbons.
A Crop-a-Dile punches through the fabric, trims and stabilizer so easily!
 
 
ETA: I have collected a lot of clip art images from various places. Most of my images are from:
 


Thursday, January 2, 2014

One Little Word - REFRESH!

Many people choose One Little Word to define or infuse their coming year. I have not really done it but feel like it's time. It took me quite a while to figure out which word I want to define the year 2014. I had several ideas:
  • encourage
  • rest
  • grace
  • build
  • grow
but I think I've settled on.....REFRESH! I see this as refreshing others. I see this as refreshing my body, my mind and my spirit. I'm super excited about the word and making 2014 the year of refreshing.

"A generous man will prosper. He who refreshes others will himself be refreshed."
Proverbs 11:25 NIV

What's your word?

Wednesday, January 1, 2014

Creative JumpStart 2014




Creative JumpStart 2014 is under way! 21 instructors, videos, forums giveaways and creative fun. You can join in, too. Head on over and I'll "see" you there!