Friday, May 30, 2014

Apple of My Eye Card (last chance for the May Stamp of the Month)

It's nearly the end of May - how did that happen?  This month is always a busy one and this year it was busier than usual for us.  We were away for 10 days and there were lots of changes for our family (all good things - new job, new apartment for our younger son and a first home purchase for our son and daughter-in-law).  So I have not been a daily blogger this month but I have lots of things planned for June.

When the Spring/Summer Close to My Heart catalog came out earlier this year, I found a lot of things that I liked.   Beautiful papers, new products for pocket scrapping, jewelry items and lots of stamps sets.  You can see all of the sticky markers I put in the catalog that my friend Joy Tracey sent to me!

One of my very favorite things was this stamp set - and I had to wait until May to get it!  This is the Stamp of the Month for May and you can only buy it in May.  The nice thing is that you can buy the Stamp of the Month for just $5 if you spend $50 on other items (not hard to do!). These are always the large stamp sets that sell for $17.95, so it is a great deal!

This month there is a double deal because, in celebration of National Scrapbooking Month, you can also buy a very nice set of papers for just $5 with that same $50 purchase (regular price $11.95).

This set does not coordinate to one of the CTMH Cricut cartridges (Art Philosophy, Artiste and Artbooking), so I created my own cut files by scanning the cover sheet into my Silhouette software and tracing the images to create outlines (for details on how to do this please see THIS POST).

I created a file with several of each stamp shapes and cut it from an 8 /12 x 11 sheet of white cardstock.  Here is the cut preview of the shapes.

The shapes cut perfectly (don't mind my dirty mat - and yes I do sometimes use my Cricut mats in the Cameo, you just have to place your cardstock slightly higher on the mat to compensate for the difference in mat size).

I like the chalkboard look of these images and my absolute favorite is the "apple of my eye" stamp.  My husband's family has an apple farm and we have a great affinity for all things apple!

I remembered this cardstock from an older DCWV stack (the Sweet Stack - I bought several of them when it came out and still have lots to use up!).  The apples along the bottom work perfectly for my card.  I matted the stamped apple sentiment on two scalloped circles cut with Nestabilities petite scalloped circle dies.  The top layer is also cut from the Sweet Stack and the lower layer is Core'dinations Core Couture glitter cardstock (to match the glittery apples along the bottom of the card).

I used foam dots to raise the top circle and the stamp just a bit.  Once you have created the file for the stamp mats you can use them over and over.

If you love these stamps too - you need to hurry over to Joy's Close to My Heart site because when May is over they will be gone.  So that means you have to shop today or tomorrow!  Remember, you can buy this set for $17.95 or get it for only $5 with a $50 purchase.  You will add it to your shopping cart after you have spent $50 or more to get the special price.

Have a great weekend - we have a big birthday celebration this weekend (more about that soon...)

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Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Cricut Memorial Day Sale Extended

Memorial Day is a time to remember those who gave their lives in service to our country.  The poppy has become the sympbol for remembrance on Memorial Day.  I am sharing this photo in honor of all of the brave men and women who serve.

I hope you had a great weekend.  We enjoyed time with family and our neighbors.  I have been tied up with a new project and a few classes that I have been taking that are just finishing up so I haven't been posting quite as frequently as usual.  I also am trying to sort out the problem with some of your email subscriptions - several people have notified me that they are no longer getting the emails with blog posts.

There were a lot of sales over the weekend - did you get any good deals?

If you didn't shop over the weekend (or even if you did) the Memorial Day sale on the Cricut website has been extended and now ends today.  I am an affiliate for Cricut.  This means that if you use the links on my blog to go to the site and make a purchase, I will receive a commission.  Your price will not be affected.  I appreciate it when you support my blog by using these links.  

Digital and physical cartridges are on sale for 40% off so it is a great time to add to your collection - particularly if there are some cartridges that aren't included in the image subscription that you have had your eye on.   (The list of cartridges that are included in the subscription is HERE).

All of the clearance items are 75% off.  You can find them on the Deals Page.  Some sets of Cuttlebug folders are only $2 for four folders.  I stocked up on these last time and got some of the Companion Sets that were made to coordinate with certain Cricut cartridges.  These sets are either $2.00 or $4.50.  One of my favorties in the Once Upon a Princess set - the rose folder (dark purple in the photo above) is lovely for wedding cards.  I used it for the card below (and many others).

Check out the Yudu mats - two mats in the package for just $3.25.  The mats are the same size and thickness as the Cricut mats but they are blue and not as sticky as a regular Cricut mat. You can easily add adhesive (I use the Zig wide two way glue pen).

There are also covers for the Cake machine HERE for just $2.50.  (If you don't like the Cake logo, you could add an iron on design to cover it).  These covers will fit the Expression and possibly the E2 but not the Explore machine.

Take a good look through the Clearance section on the Deals Page - I am sure you will find other bargains that you can use. 

If your order is $35 or more, you can get free shipping with the code FREESHIP35 (I believe this is for the continental US only).

Here is a little peek at some of the things I have been creating in the digital design class I am taking.  It is a lot of fun but very time consuming to create the patterns and textures.  There is some overlap in designing digital elements and cut files but I still have a lot to learn!

Have a great day!

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Friday, May 23, 2014

Congratulations Card (Free SVG File)

One of the things I like about designing is that you can create a basic design and then use it in many different ways.  This card is made from the same file as the card I posted yesterday but it has a totally different look.  I think it would be great for a graduation card - use the school colors to coordinate the look.

Here is a photo of the first card - just to make it easier to compare.  I am sharing the SVG file for this card topper - you can add as many circles as you like to change to look of the card (some below the topper to show through the cuts and some in the center).

If you are using the Cricut Explore and Design Space, you will need to upload the file to Design Space. If you use a Silhouette machine you will need the Designer Edition of the software to open this file.  You can also use this SVG file with other software programs and machines.  I am including some screenshots to show how to upload the file to Design Space.

After you download the file and save it on your computer, choose "Upload Image" on the left side of the Design Space screen.  This screen will appear.  Click on Browse and then find the location where you saved the file on your computer and select it.

Once you select the file to upload it will appear on this screen.  The title of the file will automatically appear in the "image name" box.  You can add tags if you would like - they will help you search for the file later.  After you add your tags, just click on the green button to save the image.

Select the image from the list of uploaded images, click "Insert Images" and it will appear on your mat.  It will be black and smaller than it should be.  You can resize it to whatever size you like - to make the same size card that I made, use the edit menu to change the size to 5.25 inches.  As long as the lock icon is closed, you just have to type 5.25 in one box - the height or width will change automatically.

I can't make any sense of the order that the machines use for cutting shapes.  Sometimes they seem to go top to bottom through the design but this shape cut in a random sort of pattern.

I cut two of the toppers and the Explore did a great job with the file.  The red cardstock at the top was a thick one from Martha Stewart and most of the cut out shapes stayed on the mat.  The thinner blue cardstock cut nearly perfectly and lifted cleanly with only a couple of small triangles stuck to the cut (they brushed off easily).

The cardstock I used for the topper was a white core DCWV from an older Winter stack.  The white core is not very noticeable when there is a white card base below but it really shows up against the red layer behind the inner circle.

I don't like to ink too heavily on the front of the card, so I turned the topper over and used a blending tool with some Distress Ink in Chipped Sapphire to color the edges of the inner cuts.  I also inked the four sides of the topper.

After inking, I added a line of adhesive to each of the oval sections in the inner ring.  I cut a ring of red cardstock by cutting one circle inside another one.  You can add circles and play with the colors while you are working with the file in Design Space.

I adhered the ring to the topper and then it was ready to add to the card base.  The card base is 11 x 5 1/2 inches, folded in half to create a 5 1/2 x 5 12 inch square card.  You can change the size to suit your project.

Here is the card with the topper and backing layer added.  Now you just have to decorate the center.

I wanted to use this circular stamp that says "Congratulations" for the center.  This stamp set is from Close to My Heart and it is part of the Art Philosophy Cricut Collection Bundle.  You can find this on my friend Joy's CTMH website HERE.

I find it a little tricky to stamp on a circle that is already cut so I stamped the "Congratulations" circle on white cardstock and then use a 1 3/4 inch punch to punch it out.  You can look at the edges to center it very easily this way.  This is my largest circle punch so for bigger stamp images, I do cut the circles with the machine and stamp on the cuts (I just make extras to account for bad stamping!).

I added a two inch punched scallop circle behind the stamped circle and used thin foam dots to raise it up just a bit.  I cut two more circles, one red and one white, and layered them directly on the card front.

Try all sorts of combinations of circles and stamping or add a different shape to the center of the card.  The possibilities are endless.

You can download the SVG file HERE.  I'd love to see how you adapt my design for your projects.

I hope that you have a lovely holiday weekend (if you are in the US).  I know that everyone around here is really ready for summer to arrive!

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Thursday, May 22, 2014

Framed Flower Card

This card is simple to make but it looks rather complicated.  I designed it recently while I was away from home and my die cutting machines.  Yesterday I had a chance to test cut one version of my design.  I cut this with the Silhouette Cameo and I plan to cut it with the Explore next to compare the cuts.  With the Cameo, the tiny triangles cut fully but I had to poke most of them out.  I have found the my cuts with the Explore almost always lift cleanly from the mat so I'll let you know if this one works nicely.

The topper with the cut pattern is cut from Core'dinations Pearls cardstock which has a beautiful shimmer.  I had some flowers that have been sitting around in my craft room for years so I decided to layer a couple of them with a jewel brad in the center.

Here are all of the pieces for this card.  The base is 5 1/2 x 5 1/2 inches (11 x 5 1/2 inches folded in half).  The card topper is 5 1/4 x 5 1/4 inches with the design centered and cut.  I created this design using some "leftovers" from a doily design that got a little too complicated.

I used my very old, but still quite functional, Creative Memories circle cutter to cut the color backing for the inner ring at about 3 1/2 inches.  Since this would only show through the inner ring of the design, I cut another circle from the center at about 2 1/8 inches.  This is a great way to save paper and reduce the weight of layers on a card.

I put adhesive on the back side of the card topper and set the green ring into position.  The ring was cut from a two sided paper with slightly different shades of green.

Once the green ring was set in place behind the card layer, I adhered the layer to the card base.  You could use the center area to stamp a sentiment instead of adding the flowers.

Here are the layered flowers on top of the green circle.  I thought the green was altering the color of the flowers and that it was distracting.

I punched a two inch scalloped circle and added it between the flowers and the green circle - I think this looks nicer.

After I glued the scalloped circle and plain circle together, I used this pick tool to punch a starter hole in the center of the shapes.

Then I inserted the jeweled brad through the center of the flowers and the circle shapes to hold everything together.

The green circle below the flowers gives the illusion that there is another circle cut into the card topper since it is the same color as the ring layer that is backing the inner circle.

This pretty card could be used for lots of different occasions.  It would be lovely as a wedding card made using the color scheme of the wedding.

 If you missed the photos from the Botanical Gardens in yesterday's post, just scroll back to see them.  The final photo was taken somewhere in San Francisco - any guesses where I took it?

Do you have plans for Memorial Day?  We will be staying close to home after all of our travels.  Happy weekend if you are taking Friday off too as a bonus day!

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Wednesday, May 21, 2014

A few photos to share


We have been away for the past week or so and I took a bit of a break from blogging.  I promised some photos from our trip and here are a few from California.  We visited our son and daughter-in-law at their new condo, took a day trip up the coast and also went to the Botanical Garden at UC- Berkeley.

There are so many types of plants that we don't have here in the Northeast.

The textures of the various tree barks were so interesting.  Here are just a few...

This praying mantis sculpture took me by surprise - it is on the roof of one of the small buildings.

Here are just a few photos from the coast.

I wonder if anyone can guess where I took this photo...

When we left California, we went on to Colorado to see more family.  I will post some photos from that part of the trip later this month.

I hope you have had a good week.  I'll be back in the craft room today - I need some paper play time!

This post may contain affiliate links. If you purchase a product using the link I may receive a commission. I only participate in affiliate programs for products that I use or can recommend without reservation. Subscribe to Capadia Designs if you would like to have new posts delivered directly to your email.