Monday, November 17, 2014

Creative Blogger Tour

Creative Blogger Award
The other week I was asked to be part of the Creative Blogger Tour - talk about an honor and a surprise!  The tour is an invitational hop where you answer questions about your creative process, kind of a quick peek into the minds of creative CTMH bloggers!

When you check out the blogs of the previous nominees you'll see why I was so gall darn pleased to be asked - these ladies are some of my creative heroes!

Becca Whitman

What am I currently working on?
I just finished up my monthly Card Buffet classes tonight - look at that bit of crazy in the picture below!  These classes are tons of fun but a lot of work to create!  This month I had 12 new holiday themed projects and brought back 22 previous general themed projects for a whopping 34 different items people could make during a 2 hour all you can create buffet.  These boxes are the ones that still had a few projects left at the end of Sunday's class.
My next big project will be getting items ready for the Si View Holiday Bazaar on Saturday, 6th December.  I have lots of ideas, a stocked Pinterest board and tons of supplies ready for me to go on a crafting binge and about 2 weeks of actual crafting time to get it all done!

My daughter is coming home from college for Thanksgiving break and I'm thinking I won't get much crafting done while she is home so this coming week is going to be full of sock cupcakes, gift card holders, Santa and Snowman Hershey Bar Sliders, Christmas cards, Elf Chocolates, Base and Bling Pendants and more!

How does my work differ from others in its genre?
Ask a girl a hard question!  I think most CTMH girls have a great eye for color and design so beyond that I think my specialty is using our Cricut cartridges and creating projects that can be made in a class setting.  I adore seeing creations that obviously took hours to create but most of what I create winds up in a class later on so I try to keep to things that can be copied by a range of crafting levels.

For the past couple of years I've been designing online using CCR and now Design Space so I offer a lot of free cutting files using our amazing CTMH cartridges.  I like to think of it as putting a little good out into the world and I love it when people send me notes letting me know they've used a file I created!

Why do I create what I do?
I think creativity is an essential element for people to have in their life for their mental well being.  Creativity doesn't have to be crafty - it can be cooking a meal or building a stone wall or making Lego sculptures with your kids - anything that engages your hands and your brain in creating something new.  I always joke that there are two things that keep me happy and sane - doing Martial Arts and doing papercrafts.  If I miss either for more than a few days I start feeling a bit cranky.

One of the reasons I love being a Close to my Heart Consultant is because I get to bring wonderful ladies together and offer them an activity that nourishes the creative part inside so they always leave with a smile on their face and in their heart.  My crafting helps make my corner of the world a little bit brighter and cuter and I get to spread the joy with friends.  Who wouldn't love a job like that?

How does my creative process work?
Another tough one to answer!  Necessity is the mother of invention and a lot of times it is what spurs my creativity too!  I can spend hours looking at Pinterest and blogs and get nothing done.  When I have a hard deadline for something to be finished then my creativity goes into drive.  I am by nature a very practical person so my best work is spurred by having a specific person or event to create for - there is nothing that gets my creative juices flowing better than a party to decorate or making a gift!  Beyond that I often find myself paging through the CTMH Cricut handbooks to pick out cuts I haven't used yet or flipping through my stamp collection and picking out a theme based on a stamp.  I love looking through our Idea Books (I have them going back to 2006!) and our How-To books for ideas on color combinations and layouts for projects.  Sometimes I'll just flip through my paper collection and pick out a paper that I want to use and let the project flow from there.

So that is a look into my messy, fun, practical mind and now I get to nominate the new blogger on the Tour!  It is my great pleasure to announce Dawn Ross has agreed to be the next stop on your tour!  Be sure to visit her next Monday for her post!

Thanks so much for stopping by today and spending some time with me!  Stay crafty my friends!


Monday, November 10, 2014

Holiday Themed November Card Buffet - Thursday, 13th November 12:30-2:30PM OR Friday, 14th November 7-9PM

Who:  Anyone 12 and up!  All pieces are pre-cut and ready to stamp/assemble so new to advanced crafters are welcome!

  Card Buffet - all you can "eat" in 2 hours

Cost:  $15 Flat fee for a fun and productive girl's night out!

Option 1:  Thursday, 13th November from 12:30-2:30PM
Option 2Friday, 14th November from 7-9PM  at my home in Snoqualmie (arrive 15 minutes before the start time to view and be ready to go!)

What to bring:  Adhesives like a glue pen, tape runner and pop dots.  Basic tools like bone folder, scissors (shared tools will be available).

What is it:  This round of Card Buffet will have new projects with a holiday theme including Christmas pop up cards and gift card holders.  These new holiday themed projects will join a large selection of previous projects in various themes so if you aren't doing holiday items yet you'll still have plenty of other cards (around 20) to choose from. 

All projects are pre-cut and boxed with all the tools and inks you need to complete.  You choose the box that contains the card you want to make and then take the box to your seat and put together as many of those cards as you'd like.  When you are done, return that box to the table and pick your next project.  You work at your own pace on whatever projects you choose and can do as few as one or as many as you like of the same card within the 2 hour time limit.  The only rule is that you have to finish each project before you move to the next one (no bringing supplies home to finish).

RSVP:  call/text (425)260-6965 or e-mail

Discounts:  Place a $30 CTMH order and get $5 off your Card Buffet!  

There is something for everyone at this buffet whether you are ready to get into the holiday spirit, just want to get some gift card holders ready for the season or need a few birthday or thank you cards! RSVP today!

Thursday, November 6, 2014

Artfully Sent Blog Hop

Welcome to our Artfully Sent Blog Hop!

Today we have well over 40 CTMH consultants sharing projects made with our new Artfully Sent cartridge! If you have come here from Melissa's Blog you are on the right track!  This hop is a big circle so if you continue on eventually you'll come back here but if you get lost along the way, you can click here for a full list of all the participants.

I created a missing you card for my daughter. She hasn't been back home since we took her to college in mid-August so we are counting down the days until Thanksgiving Vacation!  I can't even express how much I miss having her at home but I know she is growing and loving college.

I used my Explore to write our names on the front of the card in silver marker.  I picked the fox theme as I just sent her a fox mask for her Halloween party and used the same Scaredy Cat papers.
On the inside of the card I added a bit of color layering to give more detail to the cuts - I added blocks of green for the leaves and pink glitter paper for the bird to match the heart on the front of the card.

I even used tiny scraps of Pixie Pink between the Champagne overlay of the deer and the solid black backer I created for the pop up section.

Here is the Cricut Explore file I created to make this 5x7" card with pop up liner - I changed the names to Me and You to make it more generic for sharing.  To edit these names just Detach the writing and replace. Some of the tiny pieces like the fox tail and the ears I didn't create squares for - simply tear a tiny piece of the color to cover those areas.  I hope you enjoy the free file!  I truly appreciate the patronage I receive of my CTMH business which allows me the ability to create and offer so many free files!

I absolutely LOVE our new Artfully Sent cartridge for making cards!  Pop up cards are my favorite and this cartridge makes them so easy to create and to customize!  If you are ready to join in the fun you can order your cartridge today from my online shopping site:

Now hop on over to Michelle's Blog and see what she has created to share with us!

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Artfully Sent Bouquet of Roses Card - Free Explore File!

One of the things I love about the new CTMH Artfully Sent Cartridge is how easy it is to make great looking cards that are flat for mailing!  Now that I'm sending off a whole lot of happy mail each month, making cards that don't require a lot of extra dollars for postage makes ME a happy camper!  Every penny counts when you have a kid in college - LOL!

This simple card is big on color contrast.  Love our Glitter Paper for adding a dash of sparkle with the cute bow!

Here is the free Explore Design Space file so you can make this card too with your Artfully Sent CTMH cartridge.  If you don't have this awesome new cart yet, hop on over to my online shopping site and get it for yourself!  I truly appreciate your support of my CTMH business which allows me to freely share files on my blog!  Likes on my Facebook business page are always welcome too!

Thanks for stopping by today!  Stay crafty my friends!


Friday, October 31, 2014

November Stamp of the Month Blog Hop - It's the Little Things

Welcome to our November Stamp of the Month Blog Hop! 

We will be featuring November's SOTM, It's the Little Things.  If you have come here from  Haley's Blog, you are on the right path! The blog hop is a great big circle, so you can start here and work your way all around.  If you get lost, click HERE to find the complete blog hop list!

When I saw this group of stamps I thought how fun it would be to random stamp an entire sheet and then cut a gift ensemble from it!

I used analogous color families like blues and greens, yellows and oranges, and purples and pinks to layer inks while keeping them from looking muddy.

To give things a bit of sparkle I added dots from our Silver Metallic Marker on all the tiny orange flowers and the centers of the purple and pink flowers before cutting with my Cricut.

Our thin Thistle Diagonal Striped Ribbon was perfect to tie up the gift card holder and add the tag to the bag.  I did use a small velcro dot on the bag to keep it closed as well.

Here is the Explore Design Space file for this ensemble.  It uses one 12x12 random stamped or patterned paper and one 8.5x11" sheet of white cardstock.   

Here is the list of colors and stamping order I used:
Purple Flower:  Thistle and Gypsy
Pink Flower:  Pixie and Thistle
Yellow Flower:  Canary and Goldrush

To purchase the SOTM for just $5 with $50 purchase or any of the other items needed to make this project, visit my shopping site!

Now hop on over to Jilena's Blog here and see what she has created!


Monday, October 27, 2014

White Rabbit Halloween Costume

My son was invited to a Mad Hatter Halloween Party right after I made the two masks for his sister in college.  As soon as he told me about it I had an idea in my head based on the rabbit mask in the Cricut Animal Mask digital file.  I added a couple of extra props and this costume came together pretty quickly - design plus cut and assembly took me a morning.

Close up of the mask - the nose is covered in a couple of layers of Liquid Glass to give it shine and dimension.  The gray nose area is silver metallic cardstock to catch the light.  I cut an extra black backer and sandwiched the black grosgrain ribbon ties between the two pieces.

I used the Ace of Spades card from our CTMH Artiste cartridge and replaced the spades with a hearts.  I had the Explore draw the A on and filled in the outline with gold metallic marker.

I absolutely LOVE the way the oversized pocket watch came out!  I added a front piece and hinged it so it opens to see the inside of the watch.  The letters are drawn onto silver metallic cardstock by the Explore - Black then outlined in Copper.

The front of the watch is held in place by a small dot of velcro.  We threaded the watch ribbon/chain through the button hole of his suit jacket so he could pull it out to show the time.  Too fun!

He thought his costume was awesome when he saw it and it was a bit hit at the party too.  It makes me feel like a Mom Superhero when I knock it out the ball park for one of my kids!  Have I told you today how much I love my Cricut Explore???

Thanks for stopping by today!  Stay crafty my friends!


Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Fox and Cat Halloween Masks with free Explore File

The other day I got a call from my darling daughter who is off at college asking about Halloween costumes.  Her dorm is putting together a fun party for the kids and she wanted a little something cute to wear.  I pulled up a couple of the cartridges from my new Cricut Subscription that my husband bought me for my birthday this year (thanks Mark!) and asked her which cuts she liked the best. Here is what she picked and what I created.

These came out so cute!  I used some metallic paper I had on hand for the reflective silver (just in case they are doing outdoor stuff for the party) and lots of dots of Glitz Glitter Gel to accent.  The orange fox paper is from our Scaredy Cat Paper Pack. The noses are both glitzed and then I added a layer of Liquid Glass on top to keep the glitter on.  The cat's eyelashes are outlined on the tops only with Liquid Glass too - tres chic! 

Since I had to figure out the sizing for these cuts for an adult face I figured I'd share the file here so people don't have to go through the sizing process like I did - LOL!  To make them into a wearable mask I also added 18 inches of grosgrain ribbon to each side and cut a second black base layer to sandwich the ribbon between two black layers making the masks pretty sturdy.  I did use liquid glue for all the layers to ensure a really good bond and a strip of Score Tape under the ribbon tab on each side.

Now I need to make one of these cuties for me!


Monday, October 20, 2014

Signup today - Next Card Buffet Friday, 24th October from 7-9PM!

Our next Card Buffet is this Friday, 24th October from 7-9PM!  Don't miss out on 2 full hours of all you can "eat" cardmaking fun for just $15!  RSVP your spot at the table by sending me a note to or give me a call at 425-260-6965!  

Just check out this TOWER of projects waiting to be put together by YOU!  Each box has everything to create one project.  The double stack is almost as tall as I am!

One of the good things about doing Card Buffets is that I always have tons of artwork to share on my blog!  This sweet card was insipred by a fellow CTMH consultant Amy Moore - you can see her original here

Inside detail showing a fun washi banner to decorate the interior.  

I hope to see you Friday night!


Thursday, October 16, 2014

October Card Buffet - Thursday, 23 October from 10AM-12PM and Friday, 24th October from 7-9PM

Who:  Anyone 12 and up!  All pieces are pre-cut and ready to stamp/assemble so new to advanced crafters are welcome!

  Card Buffet - all you can "eat" in 2 hours

Cost:  $15 Flat fee for a fun and productive girl's night out!

Option 1:  Thursday, 23rd October from 10AM-12PM 
Option 2Friday, 24th October from 7-9PM  at my home in Snoqualmie (arrive 15 minutes before the start time to view and be ready to go!)

What to bring:  Adhesives like a glue pen, tape runner and pop dots.  Basic tools like bone folder, scissors (shared tools will be available).

What is it:  I have 18-20 different cards in a variety of styles and sentiments with everything cut and ready for stamping and assembly.  You choose the box that contains the card you want to make and then take the box to your seat and put together as many of those cards as you'd like.  When you are done, return that box to the table and pick your next project.  You work at your own pace on whatever projects you choose and can do as few as one or as many as you like of the same card within the 2 hour time limit.  The only rule is that you have to finish each project before you move to the next one (no bringing supplies home to finish).

RSVP:  call/text (425)260-6965 or e-mail

Discounts:  Place a $30 CTMH order and get $5 off your Card Buffet!  
The cards shown here are just 2 of the 19 projects available including some from our new Artfully Sent cartridge!  We'll have thank you, birthday, thinking of you, condolence, feel better soon and more themes - something for everyone!

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Artfully Sent Explore Design Space Sizing Cheat Sheet - download a FREE copy!

Artfully Sent was designed around the E2 machine and older so for people with those machines - use the sizing as indicated in the handbook.  Cards can be adjusted in size but some of the details in the cuts may lose their sharpness at smaller sizes.  If it looks pretty intricate, cut it at the sizes shown.

For those of us with the new Explore machine, the sizing has to be adjusted to create the size cards we want.  The Explore has such detailed cuts that really you can make your cards at any size so a 5x7" card can easily be changed to a 4.25x5.5".  I've spent several hours putting together a document with the guiding principles for adjusting the sizes of cuts to get any size card as well as specifics for using vertical and horizontal fold cards, envelopes and liners, Pocket Cards and the Sleeve cards.  I love getting feedback on my documents to make them as useful as possible so feel free to drop me a note. 

You can download this word document from my google drive here:

I always appreciate your support of my business which gives me the time to create fun and useful freebies!  

You can shop with me at:

You can give a like on my business page at:

Thanks for stopping by today and stay crafty my friends!


Monday, October 13, 2014

Tri-Shutter Guy Card with Hats Off

I love making cards with a surprise element to them like this fun tri-shutter style card.  It fits into a regular envelope but when you pull it out it becomes a stand-up display! 
This vintage themed stamp set is one of our fabulous Hostess Rewards sets called Hats Off.  To get it (at a discount no less!) host a party of $150 online!  

Love the dimension on this fun style of card!

This card was featured at my September Card Buffet and I'm already hard at work designing for October's class.  I know guy cards are always the most difficult to design so come to class and get some great ideas and create samples to take home!

October's Card Buffet
Date:  Friday, 24th October 7-9PM
Cost:  $15 for 2 hours all you can create
RSVP your spot today by sending me a note at!

Stay crafty my friends!


Card base Explore cut file created by Narelle at the Non-Crafty Crafter.  See her file here.

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Thank You Card with Gift a Lift and Balloon Ride

Sign up today for the October Card Buffet!  
When:  Friday, 24th October from 7-9PM
Where:  Snoqualmie, WA
Cost:  $15 for 2 hours of all you can "eat" cardmaking!

All the hard design work and cutting is done ahead of time.  You show up, stamp a bit, assemble your cards and have fun!  All you need to bring are your adhesives!  Come this month and make cards as cute as the one below!

Here is another sweet card we made at last month's Card Buffet. This one uses the adorable Give a Lift stamp set.  There are multiple sentiments that fit inside the banner piece on the balloon - love that flexibility!  Check out that gorgeous Bronze Shimmer Trim giving this card some extra special sparkle! 

Thanks for stopping by today!


Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Embossed Alcohol Marker Colored Foil Scene Card

I had so much fun making the embossed alcohol marker colored foil background for yesterday's post that I decided to try it with a scene embossing folder.  Our new Shinhan Touch Twin Alcohol Markers are perfect for this technique!

Click HERE to see my quick tutorial on how to create a tin foil dry embossed piece for your projects.

These cards are SO shiny and pretty in real life!

 I love techniques that are super easy but full of visual pop!  I hope you'll give this one a try! 

Stay crafty my friends!


Monday, October 6, 2014

Shinhan Touch Twin Marker Blog Hop - How to Emboss and Color FoilBackgrounds

Welcome to the Shinhan Marker Blog Hop!  Today our group of CTMH Consultants will be showcasing our new Shinhan Touch Twin alcohol markersIf you are coming from Wendy's Blog then you are on the right track!  This blog hop is a big circle so keep going and you'll head back here.  If you happen to get lost along the way you can find the complete list of hoppers here on Melinda's Blog.

I wanted to try something new for this hop so I made a card with a dry embossed marker colored foil background.  I had this technique kicking around in my head and couldn't wait to try it with our fun Chevron Embossing Folder.  I have a brief How-To for this technique at the end of this post so be sure to scroll to the end.

I colored my Cricut cut words with my Shinhan markers to match the background exactly. Then I added a splash of our retired Pink Glitz Glitter gel to give the heart a little umph.  You could also use our Pink Glitter paper to give it some sparkle!

This one is going off to my college girl for her weekly happy mail.  I miss her so much and I know she gets a boost each time she gets a bit of love from home in her mail box.

Now hop on over to Haley's wonderful blog to see what she has created for you!

Edited to add colors of markers I used:
Cherry Pink then Tender Pink 

Marigold then Leaf Green

Green Stripes: 
Vivid Green then Sap Green 

Peacock Green then Turquoise Blue 

Lavender then Peony Purple

How To Create Tin Foil Embossed Papers:

1.  Cut a sheet of Heavy Duty Tin Foil the size of the piece you want to create.  I used Reynolds Wrap Heavy Duty Foil and made a full 12x12" sheet so I could have extra to play around. 

2.  Using a sheet of plain CS, apply a thin layer of Bonding Memories Glue all over the CS.  Be sure to get the edges and corners.

3.  Place the foil down on the CS and gently press down to avoid major wrinkles.  A brayer might be helpful at this step. Minor wrinkles will disappear with the dry embossing.

4.  Trim your pieces to fit your embossing folder and dry emboss.  Check your corners and edges and apply a little glue under anything that lifts.

5.  Using your Shinhan Touch Twin marker, color your designs in.  I found the high relief sections were easier to color than the lower debossed sections.

6.  Sit back and admire your fun handiwork and then add it to a project to WOW someone!

Friday, October 3, 2014

Big Top Birthday Celebration Card

This is one of 17 different cards I had available to make at my Card Buffet last week.  

Now that you've seen this adorable cuteness, I know you want to sign up for my next Card Buffet on October 24th from 7-9PM!  Its just $15 for 2 full hours of all you can "eat" cardmaking!  To RSVP your spot at the table, contact me at:

Check out the Gold Polka Dotted Washi tape - isn't it awesome?!?

I fell in love with this adorable circus stamp when it debuted in the last Idea Book.  All my crafty friends know I'm a sucker for critter stamps!

Hope to see you on Friday, 24th October for my next Buffet!

Stay crafty my friends,


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