Saturday, December 5, 2009

It's Snowing! (When It's Cold Outside)

It is a good thing that I got the outside lights finished yesterday - tonight it is snowing (after our 72 degree weather a few days ago).  Even better, I got my cartridges from the Black Friday sale today.  I am happy they send things by Fed Ex which means they are delivered even on Saturday.

After lengthy debate with myself over whether to get all three of the Winter limited edition mini cartridges (Snow Friends, Very Merry Tags and When It's Cold Outside), I did manage to restrain my collecting instincts and I ordered only "When It's Cold Outside."  For someone who generally "needs" to have all of the items in a set or series this was a difficult decision to make.  I looked over the cuts in Design Studio and decided that even though the 10 snow people were cute I had enough snow figures on other cartridges to meet my needs and I could dress them in Paper Dolls clothes and accessories.  I can even build my own snow people with circles and triangles and other shapes I have lying about the house (or Design Studio!).  The tags are nice but we have so many tags available on other cartridges that I didn't see the need to add even more - and, once again, I can make many similar tags myself with Design Studio or the Gypsy.

But the snowflakes....oh the snowflakes....I have a definite weakness for snowflakes and these are no exception.  If you click HERE you can see all of my posts tagged "snowflakes" - there may even be more (sometimes I am not great about tagging).  I have made lots and lots of snowflake designs using Design Studio - they are easy and fun to do.  With the Gypsy I can even group and resize them.  However, the intricate and clever details of these snowflakes were just irresistible!  Many of them are made up of winter images such as skates and reindeer.

The images of the snowflakes on the keypad are dense and it can be a bit difficult to see what the snowflakes look like.  You can place them on your virtual mat to see the shapes.

If you are not clear about the images used, just check the keyword for the snowflake.  The top row of ten flakes are Santa, tree, bird, deer, snowman, ice skate, ski, unidentified flake, gingerbread and candy.  The second row of keys are the backgrounds for the top row - each is directly below the key it fits.

The third row of snowflakes are reindeer, nativity, dreidel (see the photo above), angel, and the last six are snowflakes with no hidden pictures.  The fourth row cuts the backgrounds for the third row.  The fifth row has five 3D snowflakes in pairs - these are made to fit together with slits that are cut halfway from the top or bottom on each flake.

I was very curious to see how well these snowflakes would cut at small sizes - and very happy with the results I got on my first test cuts.  You do have to be careful lifting the snowflakes from the mat.  On this tree snowflake I broke off a bit (in the top right corner).

I didn't want to waste my cut so I decided to trim off all of the tips that were the same as the one I broke in lifting the flake.  The snowflake on the left is the trimmed snowflake and the one on the right is made up of the trimmed off pieces.

You could stick the pieces down and add a gem to cover the center and have yet another snowflake for your collection

I cut a second tree snowflake.  Here you can see the cartridge cut snowflake on the left and the altered snowflake on the right.  I think they both are pretty and the altered one is a bit easier to identify as trees.  Sometimes mistakes lead to happy results.

I cut a few more snowflakes to try them out.  I was curious about the skates with their tiny holes for the laces.  I cut a sample at 3 3/4 inches - it cut cleanly but the lacing holes are just pinpricks.

This closer view shows the tiny holes - far too small to actually remove any paper.  So I had an idea...why not try the gelly pens on these designs?

I set up the cut in Design Studio.  I decided to have the flake drawn of the front of an A2 card.  To make sure that it was centered and avoid trouble in trimming to an A2 card size, I added a rectangle from George to do the card cut after the design was drawn.  I know that I am way behind in videos (I have a list that I have mentioned but not uploaded yet) so I will try to do a video showing this process tomorrow - really, I will!

Here is the card with the drawn version of the skate snowflake.  The detail of the lacing holes is crisp and clear.  My gelly pens and holder came from Scrappy-go-Lucky.  Here is a LINK to past posts about the pens.

I also tried using "hide selected contour" to hide the outer cutting line of a snowflake (in this case the bird snowflake) and then drawing the interior details with the pens.  This will work best with the snowflakes that have more interior detail.  I then replaced the pen with the cutting blade and cut the background version of the snowflake.  This also makes a nice card - simple and fitting in well with the red and white theme that seems to be stuck in my mind these days!

If you are careful, you can trim the offcut to make another element for another card.  I think this one looks like a flower.

You can get some interesting effects by layering small over large snowflakes.  Here the ice skates are on top of the dreidel.  The designs align nicely since they are based on six branches.

The full version of the tree snowflake gets a little crowded for the reindeer.  I think they look like they are peeking out of a forest.

When the trimmed "mistake" snowflake is added it fits the reindeer snowflake nicely.  Once again I think the "wrong" version is "right" for this use.  The reindeer were cut at "fit to Page" on the Expression which resulted in a ten inch cut.

The tiny details of the reindeer faces were tricky even at the large size - I think at a small size there could be problems but this would be a great time to use the gelly pens.  The Cricut markers would be too thick and blur all of the intricate details.

If you have been considering getting any of the Winter limited edition cartridges, I would definitely put this one at the top of your list (and who knows, I may weaken and get the other two to complete my set!).  These are cartridges that have a limited supply and when they are gone they are gone.

To make matters even more complicated, these mini cartridges will be coming out seasonally (pictures of the Spring set - Valentine's, Easter and Mother's Day - are all over the internet but won't be officially announced until December 17th) and we just heard through the grapevine that there are eight new full content cartridges that will also be announced on December 17th "Hello Thursday" on wonder what they will be?


  1. Oh this is so exquisite!!! Love that cart! We were able to get much done yesterday, actually my Daughter and Husband did most of it, my back was acting up, but imagine my surprise to wake up to 12 Christmas cards expertly glittered and cuttlebugged! My Daughter has the gift!!! LOL

    We did the Simple card monday w/packing tape from Joy and the CWTC blog! My daughter was so taken with my take on the glittered ornaments, she took a try with red/green, and we put rub-ons the ornaments..they turned out very nice! I told her about how you had experimented with different colors as well.

    Thanks again for all your great inspiration Diane!!!

    Lisa Sturgill

  2. Just a note to thank you for being such a faithful poster to your blog! Don't know how you find the time! There are so many ideas, and so little time. Thanks for sharing your ideas and inspiring us.

  3. These snowflakes are wonderful! I cut every single one out just to see what they looked like and to share with my scrappin friends. I love all the details and your blog helped even more! I love the gelly pen idea so I'm off to try it.

    Thanks so much for all your inspirations!



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