Thursday, January 31, 2013

Teen Girl Breakfast at Tiffany's Birthday Party

First off, congratulations Ann for guessing the theme of my daughter's 17th birthday party - Breakfast at Tiffany's!  Please e-mail me at paigedolecki(at) with your mailing address so I can get your prize sent out to you!

I created almost the entire party with the CTMH Cricut Artiste Cartridge.   I saved a ton of money by creating the party items but more importantly - there wasn't anything like them that I could even find locally regardless of price.  Cricut Artiste is a must have for doing parties!

It all started with the Tiffany blue and Silver Shimmer Trim invitation.  I used our new black pigment ink to stamp the front on inexpensive cardstock.  What did I discover?  Pigment ink doesn't bleed on cheapie pre-made cards that you can buy in multi-packs at Michaels so the invites came out great!

This was the first project we did as the girls arrived - a fun, personalized party hat for them to take home!
I used Cricut Craft Room to remove the stars from the birthday hat on Artiste and cut these at full page size. I cut the black roses at 5.5" for 4 per page.  The crepe paper rosettes were edged with silver glitter and pre-made as the glue took a little while to dry.   The girls folded the hats, added the crepe paper trim, the baker's twine ties and glued the bow and rosette/rose embelishment on.  These were SO cute on the girls!

Here is the scrumptious desert / candy bar I set up.  My boys were looking forward to chowing down on the leftovers.  Little did they know how much a group of teen girls can eat....

Check out the awesome 3-D chandelier I made by cutting 4 of the 2-D cuts from Artiste, scoring down the centers and gluing them together.  I added some white gel pen lines to define the candles, silver glitz for the gems and yellow pigment inks/Stardust glitz for the flames.  I adore this piece and will probably shift it to my craft room!

I cut 27 white roses at full page size and rolled them up - they are about 9" across finished size.  The giant rosettes are (4) 12" segments of Cherry-O paper (the blue reverse) all put together in one big circle with a silver (only non-CTMH paper I used) metallic center circle.  These are about 18" across.

I found these awesome zebra striped cupcake liners at Michaels and put my chocolate dipped GIANT marshmallows in them.  They are on rock-candy wooden sticks and tied up with adorable baker's twine bows.  I used dark chocolate and a light blue chocolate on these - they were delicious and adorable!

To get the delicate blue chocolate swirls on the marshmallows, I put some of the melted chocolate into a plastic sandwich baggie and cut a tiny tip from the corner to make a quick piping bag.  Worked GREAT and no-mess clean up as I threw the bag out when done.

I baked Ghiradelli brownie mix in these shiny foil liners and added a flower of blue frosting on top.  I found light blue pre-made frosting at Target (I think it was Pillsbury) for $1.99 and it was the PERFECT shade of blue!

Yummy carrot cake muffins with cream cheese frosting and colored and clear sugar crystals.  Don't you love those chalkboard labels?  Its black cardstock cut with I think the Artiste cartridge and then I used our Chalkboard Marker to add the words.  I loved the look - it was like a French pastry shop!

Even regular Hershey bars got a pretty update by wrapping them and adding a black CS cut out plus a beautiful rolled rose.  The girls took those home with them in treat bags I had for them to fill up at the end of the party.

I placed some of the giant rolled roses around the treat table to give it some pizzaz.  The soft carmels were a Costco find.  Soooo yummy!

Absolute hit of the party - homemade caramel corn!  I found the recipe HERE but after reading the reviews I cut the butter in half.  It was the best caramel corn I have ever had in my life - seriously!  I made a double batch which was good as my boys nearly cried when they saw this huge bowl was almost gone after the party.  The girls were scarfing this stuff down!

Giant flower balloons - aren't these fun?  I used blue 11" balloons and blew them up about 3/4 full.  I tied two together and then took another set of two and crossed them over to create a four petal flower.  I added a fifth petal by simply tying one to the center and then added a 5" black balloon to the center.  At this point they looked like giant molecules - they weren't even sitting flat and looked nothing like a flower.

Here comes the magic - I tied a loop of curling ribbon to the back and then used 3-M command hooks on the wall and attached them to the hooks.  The hook allowed the puffy balloons to stick to the wall (they were too puffy to stick with blue tape) and the wall pushed all the petals out evenly.  Once they were hung I went in with a silver sharpie and added polka dots to the black center balloon and some curling ribbon stems.  ADORABLE!  The party store was charging around $13 PER FLOWER to do this with helium!

Close up of my cutie-patootie flowers.

And, last but not least a re-posting of my earlier prize post of the picture frame we made.

Whew!  Thanks for sticking through all the photos!  I used a ton of my scrapping stash (yay!) for the party decorations so it was mostly buying the cupcake liners, ingredients for food, black plates and napkins, the frames and balloons for cost.  Somewhere around $50-$60 with enough non-perishable supplies left for another party.

I hope you find some inspiration in all of this!  Like I said, my Cricut Artiste and Art Philosophy cartridges created pretty much ALL the stuff - from the picture frames to the party hats, the chalkboard labels, the giant flowers, the rosettes and anything else papery - it was all on the Cricut.  If you have a party to plan, the CTMH Artiste cartridge is truly your go-to source for everything from holidays (Easter, Valentine's, Thanksgiving and Christmas, etc.) to boy and girl birthday parties and more.  There are 14 themed holiday keys and an incredible number of images (700+) you can use for party planning. 

 If you don't have this little beauty yet, head over to my website at and pick it up for your next event - it will pay for itself with the money you save by creating your own party stuff that is WAY better than anything you can get at the store!

Thanks for sticking with me through this LONG post!  The party was a blast and I hope you find some ideas to use for your next bash!  Stay crafty my friends!


Monday, January 28, 2013

Glittering Picture Frame with new CTMH Glitter Paper and Artiste for H2H Challenges

Hi there friends!  Don't you love it when what you have been working on perfectly ties in with something you needed to do anyways?  I made this project last week but saved it because its just right for this week's challenge at Heart2Heart Challenges - All that Glitters!  Make sure you get to the bottom of this post because I have a PRIZE for you this week!

As I mentioned a couple of posts ago, my little crickey bug and my Artiste Cartridge got a SERIOUS work out when I was prepping for my daughter's 17th birthday party.  I made ALL the decorations, all the party favors, party hats, treats and just about anything else I could think of with paper, glue, a serious amount of glitter and a ton of love.  I poured a lot of creativity into the party which helped keep the cash flow down (funny how that works hunh?).  

This is one of the party favors that I made with the girls so it did double duty - it was an activity to do plus the girls took theirs home to remember the day.
Here is my glittery part - I cut all the crowns from our new Silver Glitter paper!  Wowzer!  I'm a big fan of our Silver Glitz Gel and have used it to cover a lot of stuff but this paper tops even the Glitz for shimmer and shine.  Its shimmers like a thousand diamonds and cuts like butter with the Cricut!
Add a couple of rolled roses with a few dollops of Glitz in the centers.
I stamped the acrylic photo cover with our Archival Black Ink using one of the stamps from Whoo's Your Valentine.  There is another clear cover on the back that I stamped with another saying so the girls can switch the photo caption out.  I found these frames at Ikea a couple of weeks ago for just .99 cents each!
 Can you guess what the theme of the party was?  

Leave a comment and tell me your guess!  I'll be sharing the full party later this week and I'll pick a random winner from the comments on this post!  The prize is a flat pack of all the elements you need to decorate your own picture frame - one crown, the leaves and roses plus a fabulous zebra bow! (US/Can only please) 

So leave a comment and then head on over to  and see what glittery goodies the rest of the Design Team has for you and then put a little sparkle in your life by getting YOUR glitter on for this week's challenge!  

What went into this project?
Paper:  Black and Heavenly Blue Cardstock, Silver Glitter Paper (available Feb 1st)
Frame:  Ikea 
Zebra Ribbon (Costco about 2 years ago)

Thursday, January 24, 2013

Eiffel Tower Card with CTMH Artiste and La Belle Vie

The beautiful La Belle Vie paper pack is retiring at the end of this month so I thought I'd use it to make a quick card to show off its loveliness one more time.  I used the Artiste cartridge to cut the Eiffel Tower shape as well as the doily and the banner shapes.  Some quick stamping with the La Belle Vie WOTG stamp set (Magnifique) and our Jardin stamp set (the rose and text background on the doily) and I was pretty much done!  Elegant, quick and simple - oooh-la-la - just my kind of card!

What's in this card?
Cuttlebug Embossing Folder

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Art Attack - Everyday Embellishing

Things are CRAZY busy for me this week as I prepare for my darling daughter's 17th birthday party!  My daughter is hard working, artistic, witty, sarcastic (in a funny way), intelligent, beautiful and grounded - basically she is an absolute gem so we are going with a Tiffany Blue party theme to celebrate the diamond that she is.  My Circut E2 has been humming for days with cuts from Artiste and Art Philosophy for party decor and some crafts to make with the girls.  I will take pictures as I finish things off and share here after the party but in the mean time I'll share a wonderful article put together by Close to my Heart Corporate Art Department full of beautiful artwork and tips for you on embellishing!  I hope you enjoy it as much as I did!


Everyday Embellishing

It’s easy to incorporate chalk, metallics, and bling into your artwork with a few embellishments you can use on your everyday papercrafting projects. Let us show you how!

This Merry & Bright page uses dots created with the gold metallic marker to add extra sparkle around the edges of the page. Notice the scalloped accents with outlines in gold marker which adds dimension and draws your eye. Our metallics markers will make your artwork sparkle!

Add heart to your art with an extra touch of bling—cover your Dimensional Elements with silver Glitz™ glitter gel, a clear Sparkle or two, or a touch of silver from the metallics marker! Your heartfelt messages will bedazzle your loved ones.

The chalk marker and 12" × 12" chalkboard sheet are a perfect pair for creating a unique project. Journal and embellish your memories with the quaint look of a chalkboard—minus the dust—and a lot of freehand fun, perfect to display in your albums or on your walls!

If you haven’t had a chance to scrapbook your Halloween photos yet, here’s a great idea for a spooky page. The Haunted assortment with its cute skull brads, spider badge buttons, and more, is the perfect go-to for scary Halloween memories. It also coordinates nicely with the Moonlight paper packet and Moonlight Complements Dimensional Elements.

Tell your story with papers and accents that complement your unique tale. The Memo assortment’s little note tags are great for embellishing and journaling all in one, and the tiny epoxy numbers mimic old typewriter keys. Pair the Memo assortment with our Scholastic paper packet and My Stickease® assortment for your school-themed memories and more!

This elegant layout is tied together by antique elements from the Baroque assortment, Avonlea Complements canvas shapes, and the beautiful Avonlea papers. Add a timeless quality to your memories with graceful keys, broaches, and buttons from the Baroque assortment.
Whatever your project, embellishing will bring your artwork to life. 

Monday, January 14, 2013

Heart2Heart Challenge - Hot Cocoa

This week's challenge at Heart2Heart Challenges is to create a "Hot Cocoa" themed project to warm us up in the chilly winter!  You can interpret the challenge any way you want - create a hot chocolate themed project OR to use the CTMH colors Cocoa or Chocolate.  I did a bit of both!

I've had the stamp set "Cup of Cheer" for a while now and hadn't had an opportunity to ink it up.  This challenge gave me just the right project for it - a tri fold card cut from our Artiste Cricut cartridge using Cocoa cardstock.  I was thinking about Fiesta Ware because of the flower on the pot so I made my card using some fun and funky colors - not my usual softer pairing with Cocoa but I like the vibrant pop.

Here is the card flat as you would pull it out from the envelope:
And here is what it looks like when its standing and the tri-fold part opens up a bit.  I like how the pot looks like its just finished pouring into the cup!
I think this will be a fun card to send to my parents this winter to give them a long-distance hug.

Click this link to join the fun at Heart2Heart Challenges!  Just remember to use some CTMH product in your project and link up to us using our new thumbnail photo linking tool!  If you need to pick up some CTMH products then visit my website at and shop our wonderful lines!  I can't wait to visit you and see what you create!

Products Used:

Friday, January 11, 2013

Playing with new CTMH Alcohol Markers

I made this card a little while ago using a REALLY old retired CTMH stamp set that I think is called Groovy.  I love the shape of the flower - retro and it reminds me of doodling in my notebooks at school.  I stamped in our new Cocoa pigment ink and then used the Sweet Leaf marker set to fill in the flower.  You can see there is a lighter rim around the outside of the flower and the darker inside.  This was my first attempt at the alcohol markers so its nothing to write home about but I am enjoying the blending aspects of these little beauties.
I used a Martha Steward button punch with Lagoon cardstock and then dosed the whole thing with some Liquid Glass to give it some shine. 

Here is a funny, I have no idea which CTMH set the sentiment is from.  I've looked through the sets on my desk and I must have already put it away.  I just finished looking through about 8 books and wasn't able to find it so its driving me crazy!  Anybody know which set this sentiment is from???

Thanks for stopping by today!  Stay crafty my friends!


Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Clear Acrylic Dry Embossed Winter Card

I made this card for this week's Snow Much Fun challenge at Heart2Heart Challenges.   There were so many beautiful samples from Team A that I just had to play along even though its not my Design Team week!  Go check it out by visiting

I used one of our recently retired acrylic cards and put it through my Cuttlebug to give it some swirls of snow.  After I embossed it, I put some Silver Glitz Glitter Gel on the inside of the swirls and backed that with some of our retired Wonderland paper, the reverse side of the paper is the blue I used for the snow drift.  The trees were cut from the old Jingle paper pack using my new Winter Woodland Cricut cartridge that my kids gave me for Christmas.   A bit of cheery red baker's twine and some Stardust Glitz on the tree tops and snowy hill tops this one off.

I had so much fun using these acrylic cards!  I picked up several packs when they were in the clearance section on my website at because I wanted to play around with embossing on them.  

Thanks for stopping by today!  Stay crafty my friends!


Friday, January 4, 2013

Heart2Heart Challenges Design Team!

Hey!  Check it out!

I'm so excited to announce that I am back in the saddle again over at the Heart2Heart Challenges blog as a Design Team member!  I was offered the opportunity to join in again and I jumped on it because there is nothing like a Design Team on a challenge blog to stretch you and focus your creative energies.  Not only that, the blog is all about Close to my Heart products and you KNOW how much I love CTMH!

I'll be part of an All-Star Alumni design team - these girls are so super talented that I'm completely pumped to join the fun and I'm sure we are all going to get loads of inspiration each week!  Stop on over and check Heart2Heart Challenges out, bookmark the site and get ready to play along with us!

What a great way to start 2013!

Stay crafty my friends,


Blue Ribbon Scholastic card with School Rocks and

Going through my photos folder I realized I had a couple of projects I hadn't posted yet.  This clean and simple one was created way back in August for my Idea Book release art boards. The layered book paper in this set is one of my favorites which probably stems from my first job working at a library.  I also worked at a book store and I was an English major in college.  Yeah, I'm a bit of a bookworm...
I used black embossing powder on the image of the kids walking to school.  I needed something really dark as I was stamping on patterned paper and wanted the image to pop against it.  Now that I have our new mini Pigment Ink Pads, I would use those instead as the ink has almost a raised appearance and has fabulous coverage.

Thanks for stopping by today!


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