Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Goodbye 2013...Hello 2014!

Whoa!  So, let me begin by apologizing for my lack of blog posts this month.  I will be honest with you all, I was not prepared for the holiday season with everything going on.  This was my first year with a blog AND my Etsy shop.  Add daily life during the holiday season and something is bound to go on the wayside.  Unfortunately, that was my blog.  

BUT, I have learned a lot this holiday season about how to juggle my lovely blog, my Etsy shop, my personal life, etc.  It has really helped put some things in perspective for me, as well as open my eyes to the fact that I need to be super organized, prioritize a little better, and PLAN AHEAD!  

With that being said, I will not be doing a Project Life album for 2014.  I know, I know.  But as you all know from previous posts, as 2013 went on, I dreaded having to do PL spreads.  Even when I switched to a monthly set-up, it was still terrible for me.  I will finish my October spreads and get my June spreads in my album, but that is it.  I'm not even doing the month of November and December is documented in my Christmas album.  So, I have decided not to do Project Life in 2014.  I have plans to still do some kind of monthly documentation, but I still have more planning and experimenting with these ideas before I let you guys know about it.  I want to make sure I can actually do something and deliver before getting your hopes up.

Now, for some fun stuff...my plans for 2014! I have been brainstorming and thinking and getting super excited about this coming year.

One Little Word:  I decided to pull the trigger and sign up for Ali Edwards' One Little Word year long class. I picked a word this year and started out 2013 scrapping about it on my own.  That stopped about mid-February.  I want to be more intentional with my 2014 word.  I thought actually taking the class would help me get perspective of my personal life and just help make me, well, a better me.  I have a good idea of what my 2014 word will be, but I want to take a few more days to reflect.  I will post my 2014 OLW on Monday, January 6, 2014.

Just Two Midwest Girls Scrap Challenges:  Yes, Kelly and I will be continuing our adventure together, using up those scraps and getting creative.  I cannot tell you all how extremely thankful I am to have met Kelly this past year.  We started out as penpals from a facebook group and have grown to be friends.  I'm pretty sure we were sisters in another life.  We are very excited to be continuing our scrap challenges and will be Skyping pretty soon to discuss some plans for 2014!  Get excited!

Speaking of the Just Two Midwest Girls scrap challenges, we will be posting another challenge this Friday, January 3, 2014.  You guys have until 8pm CST January 2, 2014 to link up your holiday cards you made this holiday season.  You can get more details about this challenge here.  You can link in my comments section or in Kelly's comments section.  We love it when you all play along, so show us what you've made!  You may win a $5 gift card to Two Peas in a Bucket!  

Knitting Projects:  I was knitting like crazy this holiday season and LOVED it!  I don't want to stop doing this kind of creating, so I'll start posting about my knitting projects.  I don't have a set day or blog series I will devote to my knitting projects; they will be more spontaneous throughout the year.  I already have my first knitting project post in the works!

Pinterest Crafts Blog Series:  This is something completely new for my blog, as well as for myself creatively.  If you guys haven't caught on yet, I love to make things, but I've only ever dabbled with papercrafts until my knitting adventures recently.  I have a whole Pinterest board devoted to crafts.  I obviously have intentions of doing these crafts, or I would not have pinned them.  2014 will be the year I challenge myself creatively.  I don't have a name for this blog series yet.  This series will be a monthly posting on the 15th of each month showcasing one completed craft I found on Pinterest.  I will provide the original link, supplies, instructions, photos, and my thoughts on each craft.  This is going to be a fun project!

Me on the 27th:  **This will not be my banner for this blog series!  I just really love this photo and I don't have a good selfie of me currently.**  This blog series is a spin off of Corrie Jones' 2013 Monthly "Me" Layouts.  She documented herself with a picture and 8 things about herself on the 8th of every month.  This year marks the year of my golden birthday-I'll be 27 on February 27th.  I wanted to do something special for my golden birthday, so I decided to really focus on me, in the moment.  On the 27th of each month, I will take a selfie and note how I feel, what I'm doing, dreams, aspirations, achievements, etc.  I will then make a layout!  I won't be journaling 27 things about myself each month, because, let's face it, that's a lot.  I want to focus more on what makes me at each moment.  I will be sharing the layouts at the beginning of the following month, i.e. January's "Me on the 27th" layout will be shared in the beginning of February.  I haven't set a date for that layout share, but I will.  It helps me get stuff done if I have a "deadline."  

Layout Shares:  I will continue to post my layouts I do throughout 2014.  Because I won't be doing a Project Life album, I hope to tackle more layouts.  I'm planning on STARTING my wedding, honeymoon, and childhood albums.  These projects will be ongoing and I'm not going to put any kind of deadline or schedule on these. I am starting to get excited to tackle these long-term projects, so I figured I better harness that excitement and just scrap it!

Okay, there are my plans for 2014.  I am very excited about them!  What do you guys think about my plans for the new year?  Are there any particular series or projects you're looking forward to?  What are your plans for 2014?

Happy New Year,

Monday, December 9, 2013

My Journal Your Christmas Album Supplies

Happy Monday morning readers!  As promised, here is a video showing all of my supplies for my Journal Your Christmas album.

Part I

Part II

**I had to split the video in half, so you lose a few seconds between the first one and second one.  Sorry abut the train you can hear; I cannot do voiceover at this time, so I have to talk on the video.  And, my camera stopped recording before I realized it, so you guys missed out on the stamps I'll be using throughout my album.  I may try to make another video of the stamps I'm using.
Just a little update on my album, I've been keeping up with the journaling prompts.  I've also been pretty good about capturing photos that coordinate with the daily In Focus prompts. When I do projects like this, I really, really wish I had a photo printer at home.  I don't necessarily want to send photos to a printing lab every week, let alone every day.  I like to print a month's photos at a time.

I've made my title page, pages for Prompt #1-#6.  These still aren't completely done because of the lack of photos, and that bothers me!  But I'm happy that I'm working on it.  

Are you making a December album?  How are you doing on yours?


List of Supplies

Patterned Paper:  Bundled Up by Crate Paper 6x6 Paper PadHello December by Glitz Design 6x6 Paper PadPeppermint Stix-Believe by Heidi SwapPeace Love Joy by Lawn Fawn Collection KitPeace Joy Love by Lawn Fawn Petite Paper PackOh Tannembaum-Magical by Studio CalicoMerrymint Gold Star Kraft-Magical by Studio CalicoMaking A List-Magical by Studio CalicoAll Is Bright-It's Christmas! by Allison Kreft for Webster's PagesReindeer Flight-It's Christmas! by Allison Kreft for Webster's PagesNutcracker Court-25th and Pine by BasicGreyChevron-Santa's List by Teresa CollinsNorth Pole-Reflections Christmas by Lori Whitlock for Echo Park Paper Co.Silent Night-It's Christmas! by Allison Kreft for Webster's Pages

Stickers:  Titles and Accents Sticker Sheet-Hello December by Glitz DesignIndustrious Border Stickers by Tim HoltzGood Tidings 6x12 Label Stickers by Chic Tags

Embellishments:  Good Tidings Clear Acetate Tags by Chic TagsGood Tidings Photo Toppers by Chic TagsNoel Bits & Pieces by Elle's StudioNoel Frames by Elle's StudioNoel Lil' Snippets Labels by Elle's StudioNoel Cutouts by Elle's Studio; Citrus Twist Kits Exclusive Christmas Labels; Merry & Bright Flair Button by Two PeasStar Ornaments Flair Button by Two PeasHello December Wood Veneer Tile Set by Two PeasWhite Christmas Lyrics Wood Veneer Card by Two PeasNatural Bark Stars by Prima Marketing; Citrus Twist Kits Exclusive Wood Veneer Letters, Stars, Peppermint Swirl Shapes; Peace Joy Love Flair by Lawn FawnPeace Joy Love Mixed Sequins by Lawn Fawn; rhinestone gems; Citrus Twist Kits Exclusive Flair; Hello December Giant Rhinestones by Glitz DesignChalkboard Wonderland Silent Night Washi Tape by October AfternoonSanta's List Chipboard Buttons by Teresa CollinsBundled Up Photo Overlays by Crate Paper; "Dear Santa" Mini Bag from It's Christmas! Mini Bags Assortment Pack by Allison Kreft for Webster's PagesBundled Up Journaling Cards by Crate Paper; crocheted snowflakes; white doilies; gold doilies; 25th and Pine Jumbo Die Cut Numbers by BasicGreyHome for the Holidays Sprinkles by Doodlebug Designs

Alphas:  Hello December Alphabets and Words Sticker SheetTomato Red Alphabean Cardstock Stickers by Jillibean SoupAmerican Crafts Thickers-Reindeer Font in RedGood Tidings Gold Letter Stickers

Friday, December 6, 2013

Just Two Midwest Girls Scrap Challenge: Holiday Cards!!

And....we are back with another fun challenge for you all!  We had three people play along with us for our Kill A Kit challenge.  All three readers had just awesome projects!  If you want to check out their projects, all three are linked in the comments section on Kelly's blog.  Drum roll please....the winner is...Heather Adams!  I used random.org to select the winner.  Heather (great name, by the way!), please email me at heather.sweet12@gmail.com so I can get you your $5 gift certificate to Two Peas.

This challenge round comes at the right time (funny how we planned that!):  holiday cards!  I love making cards!  I've definitely gotten back into my card-makin' roots in the past few months.  For those that do not know, I finally opened up an Etsy shop to sell my cards, which was a goal of mine for 2013.  You can browse my little shop, Sweetly Made Designs, anytime you want.  Bare with me on the storefront though, I'm completely behind in creating my holiday banner and getting more holiday cards up.  I'm a newbie, but I'm learning and will be ready for the next holiday seasons.

Anyways...back to the challenge.  As you know, from this post, I decided on the Christmas cards I would be making to send out to family and friends.  I do not even have those started yet, so I will not be showing you those today, but they are on my blog schedule for next week!

Enough of me talking, here are my cards!

Yes, these cards are in my Christmas tree!  I was experimenting a little with lighting and embracing the holiday season.  Forgive me if it's not your cup of tea, but I kind of like it.  This card is a gift card holder!  The card sits in the white fold inside.  This design comes from my Stampin' UP! club I belong to and it's super simple to make once you figure out the theme of your card.  I will post a tutorial on gift card holders this weekend or early next week.  So, if this is something that peaks your interest, do not worry, I will provide more details on another post.

This card would be excellent to send in the mail because of it's minimum layers.  I love the look of stamped white images on kraft cardstock.  It's just gorgeous!  This card could easily be made in mass production.  The only thing that would make the process a bit longer is having to heat emboss the "Merry Everything" sentiment.  So, I stamped various snowflakes all over my card front, cut a banner from vellum and heat embossed the sentiment in gold (LOVE LOVE LOVE GOLD), and then added a few gemstones to a few snowflakes.  Simple, but gorgeous.

I obviously did not do a good job with the lighting on this card.  Dang man dang!

This card is super simple to make!  I really like the look of Maile Belles' cards:  clean, simple, lots of white space.  This card was inspired by her style.  "dashing through the" is stamped in silver ink through the "SNOW" stamp.  It's so clever!  And the snowflake is punched from silver glitter paper using a Martha Stewart punch.  You could make a ton of these in 30 minutes.  I used this stamp set from Papertrey Ink.  There are some other words or phrases you can use along with the big "SNOW" sentiment.  

These are easily, my favorite holiday cards I've made this season.  I don't know what it is about them, but I am in love!  These can also be made in mass production, but it would take a just a bit longer to complete because of the white embossed wreath, the circle that is die cut from the middle, and the coordinating envelope (if that's something you're interested in doing).  I just sold a custom set of these (with various sayings in the middle of the wreath) on my Etsy shop.  People really love them!

And here is just a simple, mini holiday-themed "Thank You" card.  I have actually never written any thank yous for Christmas, but this year, I just may.  This cute, mini, square card is something I include in my holiday-themed orders from my shop.  

Okay, there you have it!  Lots of holiday card inspiration!  Don't forget, I will have a tutorial up soon on making gift card holders.  Gift cards are popular during this season and what better way to dress up one than with a handmade "home" just for that card!

Play along with us this time!  Link up your holiday-themed cards.  You have until Thursday evening, December 19th to link up your projects in my comments section or in Kelly's comments section.  Remember, those that play have a chance of winning a $5 gift certificate to Two Peas in a Bucket!

Now, go check out Kelly's holiday cards!  They are super cute and she has a little bonus project included in her post!

Happy card-making,

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Hello December!

Happy December everyone!  Can you believe how quickly this year has flown by?!  I certainly cannot believe it.  I'm looking forward to using this time of year as a way to "take back" the Christmas season.  If you are familiar with that phrase, than you must be taking Shimelle Laine's Journal Your Christmas.  Let me tell you, I am so excited to be taking this class!  

Last year, I "participated" in December Daily.  I still haven't finished my 2012 album.  It was extremely difficult to take a Christmas/holiday-season picture a day.  I was doing Project Life at the same time and didn't want to combine my December Daily and that album.  There would be days I was struggling to find something holiday to photograph.  My husband and I do not have kids yet, so we don't do too many holiday-themed activities, certainly not enough to document daily.

When I read about Shimelle's class a couple months ago, I knew this was the type of Christmas documenting I wanted to do.  I wanted something that helped capture new traditions with my husband and our current family gatherings with our childhood memories and how the Christmas season has changed over the years.  Just typing this makes me so excited for my album this year!

Now, I promise I will blog about my kit I'm using for my album this weekend.  I may do a video because I bought a small tripod during my Black Friday shopping!  I did want to show you guys some pictures though of my start up process for my Christmas album.

Here is the actual journal I will be using to write about the prompts.  I will be putting together a mini album, but I know that I won't be able to scrapbook everyday.  I didn't want to set myself up for disappointment right off the bat, so I got realistic.  I didn't want the "not being able to scrap daily" aspect of the holiday season to get in the way of me doing the journaling and documenting the season.  Enter in my homemade Christmas Journal!

 I am so proud of myself with this journal!  I didn't buy it!  During my lunch break yesterday, I went out looking for a slim journal.  I wanted something I could take with me pretty easily and something slim enough to put into a page protector at the end of the project.  I couldn't find anything.  And I was so angry because I used my whole 30 minute lunch looking for one.  I was going to stop by Target on my way back into Springfield, but as I was driving I remembered I had some paper at home. I had an "aha" moment!  I'll make my own journal.  I have a graph paper pad, in the legal size, that was perfect for folding over.  I folded 15 sheets in half and tucked them inside one another to make a booklet.  Then, I took some paper from Lawn Fawn's Love, Peace, Joy collection and cut it 1/4" bigger than the pages.  I then sewed everything right down the middle fold.  Voila!  A simple, handmade journal!  I decorated a little bit with the tag and label on the front cover and a 4"x3" Crate Paper Bundled Up journaling card on the inside cover to hide my stitching from adhering the layers on the front.  The bark stars and sequins are not adhered, but added as a prop, just for you guys!

Here's a little peak at my work space last night.  This was the first time I actually dug out my kit supplies.  I was able to make my journal (shown above) and the title page for my album.  I was pleased with myself for getting that far.  I didn't think I'd be able to get anything done last night, but I did.  Tonight, hopefully I can get my Christmas Manifesto page done.  

As I go through this journey, documenting my Christmas, I'll post more on my blog.  Also, if you're interested in seeing other Journal Your Christmas-ers, check out #christmasjournal and #JYC2013 on instagram and Twitter.  If you want to see what I'm doing this Christmas, follow my instagram @hsweet12 with the hashtag #asweetchristmas.

Also, you guys have until tomorrow (Wednesday) night to link up how you "kill" a kit for the Just Two Midwest Girls scrap challenge. Details for the challenge can be found here.  Those that enter have a change of winning a $5 gift certificate to Two Peas in a Bucket!  Come play along!

Happy December,

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

On My Wishlist Wednesday

Happy Hump Day everyone!  I hope you all are gearing up and ready for Thanksgiving.  I know I am!  I'm excited to help my mom in the kitchen and eat food all. day. long.  Now, with Black Friday a couple days away, I wanted to share with you a few more items on my wishlist.  Hopefully, there will be some big sales so I can get a few things! 

The item on the top of my list for the past 10-12 months....drum roll, please...

Silhouette Cameo from Silhouette America
I mean, who doesn't have this on their list that doesn't already own one?  I currently have a Cricut Expression 2, but I just don't use it.  I have 5 or so cartridges, but 90% of those images I don't use.  I love that with the Cameo, you can cut words from fonts already on your computer-for FREE!  I love that you can buy single images.  I love all the free digital cuts out there, or those cut files that come with scrapbook kits/classes, or the inexpensive ones, like these from Two Peas in a Bucket.  I would use the Cameo.  I already use my laptop with the Cricut Expression 2 because it's easier for me to size images and weld them together, so having to use my laptop all the time with the Cameo would not be a con for me.

The Art of Modern Calligraphy, online class on Skillshare
I have totally be loving the look of modern calligraphy. It's just gorgeous.  This class, on Skillshare, sounds really fun.  The class itself is affordable-$20.  There is a list of materials, i.e. the pen holder, various nibs, ink, etc. that are affordable as well.  I added everything up and it would be $16-$18 plus shipping, which I don't think is too bad.  Especially if the nibs will last for awhile, the ink is the only item you'd have to get frequently.  Maybe after the holidays, I'll take this class... And if I do, I'll be sharing my projects and practice lines here, with you all!
Zig WINK OF STELLA Fine Point Glitter Pens, Pack of 12 at Simon Says Stamp
So, you all have heard about those super popular Wink of Stella Glitter Pens?  Well, these are a pack of FINE POINT glitter pens!  The regular glitter pens have a nice brush tip, but these particular pens are fine point, making it easier to go over thin lines, small letters, or to fill in small images.  The colors included in this pack are just awesome!

Viva Decor Paper Pens, Simon Says Stamp

I know this only shows one color-silver, but I want all the colors!  These snazzy little paper pens can be used to make your own enamel dots!  This video, by Jennifer McGuire, shows you how she uses these pens from Viva to make her own dots.  It seems pretty economical to me!  One pen is about $5, but it would last forever!  Where as one package of enamel dots, would only last for a handful of projects.  Yeah, I want one of these pens in every color!

Okay lovely readers, I hope you found some fun things to put on your wishlist.  Hopefully there will be some great sales coming up this holiday season to spoil ourselves.  I'll be back on Thursday to wish you all a Happy Thanksgiving!


Tuesday, November 26, 2013

"Year One: 2013" Layout

I know, it's supposed to be Project Lifein' It Tuesday, but I haven't completed a Project Life spread.  I do apologize.  But, I have a layout for you instead!  I haven't shared a layout in awhile, so I'm excited!  As you guys know from my video here (go check it out!  It's my first one!), that it's been quite the creative challenge for me recently to make a layout...

This layout here, came together so quickly!  I am so happy with it.  I didn't feel rushed in putting it together.  I didn't feel doubt about doing certain embellishing.  

Elle's Studio, Sketch Thursday

I used this sketch from Elle's Studio.  As you can tell, I followed it very closely.  What drew me to this particular sketch was the triangle cluster on the left side of the page and the banner cluster on the top of the page.  I LOVE BANNERS, so of course, I had to make a layout based on this sketch.  

I recently purchased the Maggie Holmes Flea Market by Crate Paper and the Amy Tangerine Cut & Paste 6x6 paper pads.  I wanted to use them right away.  I thought this sketch with all those triangles (23, to be exact) would be a great way to dig into my new paper pads.  I made my own triangle template/stencil to cut out all my triangles.  I then sewed them down with metallic gold thread (which I am loving right now too).  I love how well these two, very different lines, go together.  The photo is mounted on papers from these paper pads as well.  

This banner cluster was also made with papers from the same 6x6 paper pads.  I used two of my handmade embellishments I made with my Citrus Twist Kits October Main Scrapbook Kit.  The best thing about those pre-made embellishments:  they're made with papers from the Maggie Holmes Flea Market collection (well, except for the ampersand circle...)!  The light pink/dark pink striped ribbon is from a previous CT kit, I think from earlier in the year.  And the anchor flag is from a Studio Calico printable I believe from a class in March or June.  The light blue ribbon is from a Dear Lizzy collection, I believe 5th and Frolic, but I don't know for sure.  Those few things I've had sitting on my desk, waiting to be put on a layout.  The final touch was a splattering of Heidi Swapp Color Shine in Primrose.

Other supplies not mentioned above:  AlphasBegonia Cut Outs Rubber Thickers-Amy Tangerine Cut & Paste; Stamps: Citrus Twist Kits September Main Scrapbook Kit; Ink:  Stampin' UP! Smokey Slate; Turquoise Arrow: Recorded Heart & Arrow Paperclips by Allison Kreft for Webster's Pages  (all supplies listed here, except for ink, are from CT main scrapbook kits)

In October, my husband and I celebrated our first anniversary!  This layout is to document our year one together.  We had my best friend take some pictures of us at the park where we were supposed to get married.  Long story short about our wedding day, it poured down rain all morning and we weren't able to get married outside at this gorgeous gazebo at this particular park.  So Michael and I decided that we'd visit the park each year on our anniversary.

Alright friends, that is it for me today.  Come back tomorrow to see more on my wishlist.  Black Friday is in a few days!


Thursday, November 21, 2013

Just Two Midwest Girls Scrap Challenge: "Kill" A Kit!

That's right, Kelly and I finally figured out our official name for our blog challenge series!  AND we have a banner!  Look how adorable we are?!  Kelly designed this banner, so make sure to stop by her blog to let her know how much you love it!

Okay, so, big bummer, no one played along with us for our last challenge, so no one won the $5 gift card to Two Peas in a Bucket.  But, if you guys want to play along with this challenge, you could win a $5 gift card to Two Peas in a Bucket!

Our challenge:  "Kill" A Kit!

Citrus Twist Kits' "Celebrate" October Main Kit

Kelly recently started subscribing to Citrus Twist Kits.  We both get the main scrapbook kit each month. We decided it would be fun to see how much we can create with our September and October main scrapbook kits.  Now, I only worked with the October kit, but I believe Kelly killed her September and October kits.

  Lately,  I've been having a difficult time making layouts.  I've been super excited about starting my December mini album and I've been making Christmas cards, so layouts haven't really been on my creative front burner.  Luckily, I know from past experience that watching scrapbook, card, or Project Life spread process videos, especially Glitter Girl videos, gets my creative juices flowing.  And, to be honest with you guys, I didn't even touch the October kit until last Thursday!  But that night I finished 2 layouts, 2 cards, and started another layout.  Friday I had off work, so I was able to work on "killing" this kit.

I could have made at least one more layout than the three I completed, but as I mentioned earlier, I was having a difficult time getting layout inspired, so I did what I could and didn't push myself.

Something cool I did with the "Playtime Kitten" layout:  the cat die cut is from the Dear Lizzy Polka Dot Party Die Cut package.  The die cut itself was cute, but it was outlined in pink and had "true friend" written in the middle.  I wanted the cat to look more like my cat, so I heat embossed it with gray embossing powder (which I purchased recently, on clearance at Hobby Lobby!).

Also, I'm really getting into making homemade embellishments to have ready for future projects.  I watched this video on YouTube by Ashley Laura where she makes a bunch of homemade embellishments using scraps on her table.  I thought that was a genius idea and a great way to use up your stash and save time in the future.  As you saw in the video, I made a handful of my own embellishments based on what I have been loving at the moment.

So, your challenge this time around is to show us how you recently "killed" a kit.  It can be a monthly/bi-monthly kit you subscribe to or a kit you put together yourself from your stash or during a trip to your LSS.  Link up a video, blog post, and/or photos to my comments section or to Kelly's comments section on her blog.  Anyone who plays along has a chance to win a $5 gift card to Two Peas in a Bucket.  You have until Wednesday, December 4th at 8pm CST to play along!

Happy scrapping!


Wednesday, November 20, 2013

On My Wishlist Wednesday

I figured I better get back to adding things to my wishlist what with the holidays coming up...*wink, wink*!  

Brush Strokes Stamp Set by Hero Arts

I want this stamp set so badly!  Ever since I saw this video by Nichol Magouirk using this set to make a Project Life embellishment gift set, I haven't stopped thinking about it!  Not only would I like to make a gift set like this, but I can think of so many fun things I could do with this set!  

Tim Holtz Distress Markers, Full Set of 49
I've always been kind of weird about Tim Holtz's Distress line.  I always thought of grungy and dark projects, which is definitely not my style.  Now that I've been in the craft world for a little over a year, I've watched tons of videos, seen hundreds of projects, and seen all sorts of Distress products make pretty things.  And as you all know, I've been super obsessed with watercolors, and these markers make it pretty easy to achieve that watercolor look.

Inside and Out Sayings Stamp Set by Simon Says Stamp
I love making cards.  I'm liking it more and more considering I opened an Etsy shop to sell my cards!  (Go check out my shop, Sweetly Made Designs!)  I have always struggled with sayings for the inside of the card.  This stamp set would be perfect to add to my collection.

Okay lovelies, there are just a few more products you can add to your wishlist as well!  And just in case you don't know, Jennifer McGuire is doing a blog and youtube series, My Favorite Crafty Things 2013, over the next 10 days.  She showcases all of her favorites!  I love Jennifer McGuire's work.  She's very inspiring.  She also has a list of all the products she mentions on each day with links, so it's easy to add to wishlists or shopping carts!  

And a reminder, you all have until tonight to link up your take on the challenge with my dear friend Kelly.  We will randomly pick a person who entered the challenge to win a $5 gift card to Two Peas in a Bucket. Come play along!


Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Project Lifein' It Tuesday

Happy Tuesday lovelies!  We're getting closer to Thanksgiving (aahhh, next week!) and Christmas!  So pumped!  Anyways, I'm back this week with some Project Life.  I have the end of September and beginning of October to show you all.

This side is the end of September.  I haven't been good at journaling daily or taking any pictures. I've been slacking. The end of the month is completely random.  There were two big events that I didn't document at all.  I'm so disappointed in myself.  Michael's birthday was on the 26th and my last day with my friend before she moved to DC was on the 30th.

I didn't even have dates for these pictures.  Totally slacking.  I used Dear Lizzy's Polka Dot Party for this spread.  I am in love with this collection.  

I tried to keep this really simple mostly because I had no idea what to document! 

The right side is the beginning of October!  I "documented" the first 12 days, but I really only have pictures and a story from UMSL family weekend.  I have also come to the conclusion that I take too many pictures of my feet.  

I've been loving circle cluster embellishments.  They are so easy to create and so versatile.  I don't think I'll ever tire of them.

Okay, so there's some Project Life to inspire you all to document your daily life.  It may be simple, but at least it's done!

Also, don't forget about the challenge I have going on with Kelly over at her blog.  We're challenging you to use the same product(s) as used on a project and create your own project.  Details can be found here.  Those that link up their take on our challenge will be entered to win a $5 gift card to Two Peas in a Bucket.  Come play along!


Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Inspiration Wednesday

Good Morning my lovely readers!  Sorry that I have been MIA lately.  This past weekend I had a friend in town, unfortunately for something not too happy.  I have been pretty behind in my scrap projects, hence no Project Life post yesterday.  I'm hoping to "work" overtime in my scrap room in the next few weeks to get on top of stuff.  

So now, for some inspiration!  This post will be a bit shorter than last week's post, but it's still focused on Christmas.  I have serious Christmas fever!

Starting in the top left corner and moving clockwise:

This Christmas card from Kristina Werner is part of her Holiday Card Series 2013.  She has tutorials on these holiday cards up on her YouTube channel every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday.  I love every card she creates, but this one is particularly inspiring as she uses Perfect Pearls to "color" the stamped image.  I have a set of Perfect Pearls I bought on clearance at Michael's at the beginning of 2013.  I've never used them.  I didn't really understand how to use them.  Kristina's tutorial showed me how!  Now I'm looking forward to getting in my scrap room tonight and busting out my Perfect Pearls, if only I can find them...

I love this floating shelf Christmas decor idea.  Michael and I got a set of these types of shelves for our wedding.  We finally got them up sometime this past summer.  Right now, I have some cute fall decorations on them.  For Christmas, I'm definitely going to do something like this on our longest shelf.  I think I'll do the word "Joy" or "Peace" depending on the space.  I really like the idea of using a wreath as the "O," so I may stick with "Joy."  I like the rustic look too.  Last Christmas season, I tried to incorporate more of that rustic look into our decor, so this idea will work well!

Chalkboard is so super trendy right now.  And I LOVE IT!  These chalkboard gift tags from Jess at The Examined Life are awesome!  For these, she painted inexpensive wood shapes with chalkboard paint.  You could find these at most craft stores.  You could also get some thin wood to die cut custom shapes.  You could do this with chipboard.  You could put them in your December albums, on scrapbook layouts, on cards.  You could make tree ornaments or decorations!  Love this idea!

Last but not least is this adorable felt quiet book.  I have been wanting to make something like this for my niece.  I don't have any sewing skills except for on paper.  I have done some embroidery, so hand stitching is a basic skill of mine.  But when it comes to using a sewing machine, I have no idea.  I found some patterns on Etsy for quiet books using hand stitching after I read this blog post from Stephanie Bryan on her older blog, Playing House.  I now have tons of ideas and want to start on a quiet book, like, right now!

Hopefully, you all have gotten some inspiration from my post today.  What's been inspiring you lately?  Let me know in the comments section!


Thursday, November 7, 2013

Sweet & Kelster Challenge: Using the Same Products-Treat Bags!

Hello lovely readers!  Welcome to another Sweet & Kelster Blog Challenge!  Congratulations to Heather Adams on winning the Halloween challenge.  Kelly will contact you about your $5 gift certificate to Two Peas in a Bucket!

Are you guys ready for this challenge round?  This time, Kelly and I decided to create something using the same product!  We both had different takes on this challenge, but that's the beauty of a challenge!  Kelly sent me these adorable treat bags she had purchased from The Plaid Barn I believe last year.  This site is one of those daily deal websites for crafty stuff!  Can't go wrong there!  Anyways, she mailed me 9 treat bags:  5 orange and white striped glassine bags and 4 brown and white striped glassine bags.  

I got these cute babies in the mail Saturday afternoon.  I was already holed up in my scrap room and my mojo was high.  As soon as I opened the package and saw these treat bags, I knew what I was going to do with them.  It was really a spontaneous idea:  a "Thankful" mini album!  The colors were screaming autumn/Thanksgiving, so it was perfect.  And, I save all my paper treat bags from kits, so I definitely had enough bags to cover the 30 days of gratitude.  Now, I didn't plan to make a gratitude album this season.  I get a little overwhelmed with mini albums (I still have one that I've cut the paper for and printed the pictures and haven't done anything since), but I was already feeling the craft-high, so I just went with it.  I was definitely going to journal daily about my gratitude, but a project was not an intention.

So, here's the finished project...

I knew from the beginning that I wanted to hand-paint my title, like in this layout by Garden Girl Kristina Nicolai-White.  And, if you read my post yesterday, you know that I've been obsessed with gold! I just had to try this technique and I love how it turned out.  

I really wanted to challenge myself beyond using these treat bags, which was to use my stash for embellishing my mini album.  I wanted to stay with the traditional autumn color scheme of burnt orange, deep red, darker/mustard yellow, deep green, and brown.  I pulled everything in that color scheme from my stash.  And let me tell you, there wasn't much.

I do have to let you guys know that I cheated a little.  You see that cute felt leaf, the green sequin leaf, and the fall-themed stickers?  I got those from Michael's Saturday night.  Again, not intentionally.  Michael and I went to get him some sketchbooks and I happened to see a display of fall-themed craft stuff for 80% off!  I got felt leaves, sequin leaves, and fall-themed stickers each under $1! I couldn't say no.  So, I was able to add some fall-themed embellishments to my mini album.  Something I am thankful for!

I had a lot of fun putting this mini album together.  It's simple, but cute and all I have to do is write down what I'm thankful for each day on the piece of cardstock in the pocket and slap a photo on the bag side of each day.  As you guys were hopefully able to see in the tutorial, each treat bag was folded in half to make 2 pockets.  Each pocket will represent a day.  Journaling goes on the pull-out cardstock and a photo will go on the back of the day.  I'm doing a photo daily journal #mythankful30 using a list from @lilgik at feedyourcraft.com.  I am not documenting every photo on Instagram, only because some photos I'll have to pull from my photo library because some of the prompts may not match up to the day (i.e. a bright sunshiny day on November 23rd may not be sunshiny).  

Here's a picture of some of the plain paper bags I used in my mini album as well.  

I still haven't decided how I'm going to bind it.  I did punch small holes in everything, but it's really thick, so I don't know if rings would be a good idea.  Right now I have it all bound with twine, but I don't know if I'll like it.  

Now, it's your turn!  Share a project of yours and someone else's using the same products or kit. Make sure to include the link to your project and the other project in the comments section or Kelly's comments section for a chance at the prize.  Remember, the prize is a $5 gift certificate to Two Peas in a Bucket!  You have until Wednesday, November 20th to link up your project!  Now, go check out Kelly's take on our challenge.  You won't be disappointed; it's super cute!