Archive for September, 2013

Day 273: Island Lager Card
September 30, 2013

I woke up this morning feeling pretty miserable, so inspiration was not overflowing. I did what I used to do whenever I needed to find inspiration and headed over to Mojo Monday. Their sketches can usually kick start my creativity, and seemed to do the trick today.

Here is their sketch for this week:

I am not really strong with round cards, so I decided to go with a square card:

Landshark Island Lager Card

I originally thought about doing a soft, feminine card, but then I saw the Landshark beer bottle caps on my craft table and remembered that I had the perfect sentiment to go with them: “Beer is proof that God loves us and wants us to be happy” ~Benjamin Franklin.

I grabbed a couple of the bottle caps and set to work. Seeing as I am really not feeling great, I think my card is pretty darned inspired.

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Day 272: Adjust the Sails Framed Cross Stitch
September 29, 2013

Much earlier in the year, I decorated a serving tray with the quotation: We cannot direct the wind, but we can adjust the sails. I love this quote and have been looking for another way to incorporate it into one of my crafts. Yesterday, I figured out how.

Adjust the Sails Cross Stitch

When I was at the craft store yesterday, I saw a cross stitch book that had a bunch of different alphabets. I saw another one with small motifs. I decided to buy both and use them to create this cross stitch featuring the quote. I also bought the red frame which determined which color to use for the text.

I will admit that I spent some time yesterday playing around with which alphabet to use and how to arrange the letters – basically creating my pattern. But, I did all of the stitching since I got up this morning – with breaks for household chores.

Day 271: Now, With Seashells
September 28, 2013

The other night, when I went to the bookstore with my son, I bought a bookmark that used ribbon and charms. The charms on the specific bookmark were a sailboat and an anchor so obviously it caught my eye. The next day, I made my first interpretation of the style of bookmark. I followed the theme very closely and even used a sailboat and an anchor to really mimic the inspiration piece. But, I knew that there were endless possibilities.

Today, I decided to play with a different spin on the same style of bookmark:

Seashell and Ribbon Bookmark

Okay, so I played up my nautical theme by selecting Mutiny on the Bounty to include in the photo.

For this bookmark, I selected 2 seashells-one a little larger than the other-and shell pink ribbon. I started out by drilling small holes into the seashells. I found some head pins in my stash and inserted them into the holes that I drilled in the shells and created a loop to hold the head pin in place and to provide a way to connect the shells to the rest of the bookmark. I then added closures to the ends of the ribbon using my crimping tool. The closures each had a tab with a small hole for attaching it to a jump ring, so it was simply a matter or using jump rings to attach the seashells to either end of the ribbon.

I have to admit something. I was really excited about the bookmark that inspired these projects when I thought maybe it was hand-crafted. Then, I read the small print on the label that came with it. While it was designed by an artist in New York, it was manufactured in China, probably in a factory or maybe even a sweat shop. It made me even more determined to explore the medium and make truly hand-crafted unique bookmarks myself.

Day 270: Get Whale Soon
September 27, 2013

I got the call that my son is out of the hospital after having suffered a stress fracture in his femur. He is doing well, but he still has a long road ahead of him to get back into his training and to earn his Eagle, Globe and Anchor. While he is recovering, we plan to send him lots of cards to encourage him. Today’s card, might just find its way to him.

Get Whale Soon Card

The card itself is really pretty simple. I created a white card base. I then covered the front with black/grey paper and then with a smaller piece of watery blue paper. I cut a whale out using my Cricut and the Life’s a Beach cartridge and just cut the tail off for on the front of the card. Inside, it says, “Get Whale Soon.”

Keeping a card this simple can be more challenging than adding ribbons and brads and all other sorts of embellishments. But, since this one is likely going to my son, I didn’t want to do anything to make it feminine. What do you think?

Day 269: Why Buy It When You Can Make It
September 26, 2013

Last night, I was at the bookstore with my son. While he was tracking down the next book in the series he has been reading, I took a couple of minutes to check out the book marks that they had available. I have been toying with an idea for one, but I’m not quite sure how I am going to do it, so I was hoping to find some inspiration. I didn’t find anything that will help with the idea I have been playing with, but I definitely found some inspiration.

I saw this bookmark and had to buy it:

Ribbon Bookmark from Barnes and Noble

Obviously, I loved the nautical theme, but I also knew that I could make something similar at home. So this morning, I set out to make my own version:

Ribbon Bookmark with Sailboat and Anchor

I used charms that duplicated the feel of the original bookmark but that were a bit smaller (mainly since that was what I had in my stash).

Here you can wee both:

Side by Side Ribbon Bookmarks

So, now I have to ask the question: why buy it when you can make it yourself?

Day 268: Ships’ Wheels and Anchors
September 25, 2013

For those of you who have been following me since the early days of my 365 challenge, you may remember that I did several coasters back when I was first starting out. Today’s project goes back to those early days but with a new spin.

Chevron Coasters with Anchors and Ships' Wheels

So, I combined ideas from those early projects with ideas from a project I did last week.

Truth be told, the inspiration for this project hit me at 4:00 this morning. I think I dream about nautical projects that I can do. It started out with different colors and graphics but as I laid there, trying desperately to fall back asleep, I remembered that I had leftover papers from last week’s Anchor Wall Art. I wouldn’t want those supplies to go to waste.

So, I got up early and dug out the last of my stash of tiles and my cork backing. I cut the chevron print paper to size and used spray adhesive to adhere the cork to the back and the paper to the front of the tiles. While they were drying, I used my Cricut to cut the anchors and ships’ wheels. I used Mod Podge to put them onto the prepared coasters. I let them dry again and then I applied a coat of acrylic spray sealant. After a little more drying time, these coasters are ready to be used.

Day 267: Right on the Button
September 24, 2013

Today was one of those days where I woke up not having a clue what I might do for my craft. When I went into my craft room the first thing that caught my eye was some buttons that I had bought that had anchors on them. So, I had my inspiration.

I decided to make earrings using the buttons. My first idea just didn’t work, so I went back to the drawing board and came up with these:

Anchor Button Earrings

I used some beading thread that I found in my stash and ran it through the top set of holes on the buttons. I carefully tied the two loose ends behind the button to keep it in place. I then attached a jump ring to the back using the tails of the thread and another knot. I attached another jump ring and and earring post to complete the look. Now, if I want to wear these, I do have to find the earring backings, but other than that, they are complete.

Not sure if these are actually earrings I would wear or not, but I think that they are kind of cute. What do you think?

Day 266: Back on Track
September 23, 2013

After the craziness of the weekend, my husband and I are taking a day to recover. But, that doesn’t mean that I don’t make something.

Under the Sea Nursery Art

I mentioned yesterday that babies are on my mind. Both my baby who is recovering from a stress fracture in his femur, and my brother’s baby who is getting ready to have a baby of her very own. My son is 18 and training to be a Marine, but no matter what he will always be my baby. And, my niece is an adult, but she will always be my brother’s baby girl.

My niece decorated the nursery with owls, so this won’t work in that nursery, but I think it could be cute in a baby girl’s nursery.

Under the Sea Wall Art detail

I started out by seeing the fish and octopus iron-ons. I just fell in love, particularly with the octopus and her little bow. With the bow being bright pink, I thought that the sea critters would look cute on a pink background. (You can see why I started thinking that this would be cute in a nursery.) I found a pink bandana that I used for my background. I also found pale pink/almost white flocked iron-on letters. When I bought everything, I wasn’t quite sure what message I was going to put on here, but decided to go with the more generic “Under the Sea” lettering.

I have seen a lot of artwork lately that includes a frame within a frame so I decided to try making one using this project. The opening in the larger frame measures 9×12, so I cut a piece of cardboard to that size and adhered the bandana with the iron-ons to my backing. I then trimmed down the bandana and glued the edges to the back of the cardboard. A second piece of cardboard behind it hides any sloppy edges if you look at the back of the finished piece. I then glued the interior frame around my completed design. Let the glue dry and the piece is ready for hanging.

Days 264 & 265: Quick Cards
September 23, 2013

So, this weekend did not go as planned. I have an 18 year old son who is down at Parris Island for USMC Basic Training. Thursday evening, he called home to inform us that he was being prepped for surgery to insert screws into his broken femur. My husband spent most of Friday trying to find out if we would be allowed to see our son while he was hospitalized after the surgery. We were, so after we got things under control at home Friday evening and I got some craft supplies together, we set out to start the 9 hour drive. After a few hours, we couldn’t go any further since we were both dog-tired, so we found a hotel to stay in for the night. Saturday morning, we got up and hit the road before 6 a.m. so that we could get down to the Naval hospital and see our son. We got to spend a little while with him Saturday afternoon. He is doing well. He will be on crutches for 4 weeks and then hopefully he can begin physical conditioning and then return to a training platoon.

So, I said that I had gotten some craft supplies together. Well, when you pack for a weekend in about 5 minutes, you tend to forget things. After our visit with our son, we went to our hotel and I had every intention of working on a card. Unfortunately, I had forgotten my cutting mat and my paper trimmer. Both of which were really necessary if I was going to make any cards. That being said, I didn’t technically make anything on day 264. However, to make up for that, I made 2 cards today.

For day 264, I had planned to make a baby bib card with sailboats:

Baby Bib Card with SailboatsThe inspiration for this card was twofold. First, my first-born was in a hospital facing surgery at the ripe old age of 18 years and 3 weeks. Second, my niece is due to have her first baby next Sunday. With those thoughts in my mind, it seemed like the timing was right for making a baby bib card.

For Day 265, I knew that I wanted to use some more of the cute stamps that I got the other weekend at the scrap and stamp expo.

Octopus Hugs Card

The sentiment reads, “I can’t wait to wrap my arms around you” and nothing could have been more true this weekend. I just wanted to get to my son and wrap him in a giant hug. I used some beach-themed printed papers and an octopus stamp that came with the sentiment stamp. If you follow me, you may recognize the card layout from the seahorse card that I did a couple of weeks ago. The stamps were from the same set, so it seemed to make sense to use the same card layout.

I feel badly about having missed a day, but under the circumstances, I hope that everyone can be understanding.

Day 264: Oops
September 21, 2013

So, we learned Thursday evening that our son was having surgery to repair a stress fracture in his femur. The catch being that he was 600 miles from home at USMC boot camp. We weren’t sure if we would be able to see him. We learned on Friday afternoon that we could. We packed up and hit the road that evening. I grabbed some craft supplies but failed to grab some supplies that would be necessary. Long story short, I don’t have the right supplies and won’t be able to do a project today. But, I will do 2 tomorrow.

By the way, my son is doing very well and we are optimistic that he will be able to return to training in a couple of months.