Friday, July 15, 2011

HEY! Hi there!

Wow, I've really been neglecting the old blog haven't I? Sorry folks. It seems that when I havetime to make cards these days, I want to enjoy the process of making cards. I just don't have the enthusiasm for photographing and blogging TOO.

But, this past weekend I went on a wild tear and did some major reorganizing of my craft room, thanks to the inspiration from my friend Mary.

It started out looking like this. I made sure to
take photos when it was good and messy!!!

To the left here you can see a close up of my old
ribbon storage method. I loved this - 7 years ago. Now its just a mess and in all of the other before photos, you can see how the ribbon is always
hanging down onto other stuff, including my work table. Just not working for me.

Also on the left you can see my scrap storage, just literally bursting at the seams. Again I loved
this when I first made it, and now its just not working for me. The box is two of PTI's "From the Desk Of" templates without the center inserts.

Next up you can see my paper storage - left to right:
Black magazine holders hold idea folders, PTI paper stacks and watercolor papers. The two larger black magazine holders hold 12x12 paper. To the right, three clear magazine holders hold PTI cardstock. Not much about this has changed, but I did tidy it up :-) Just to the right of the
magazine files are my CD rack for PTI sets, and to the right of that is my inkpad storage, made out of balsa wood (which was cut with scissors and an xacto knife and glued with Aileene's craft glue) following, loosely, this pattern.

Here you can see just a small part of my wood mount stamp storage. This used to live on mywork table, but I was forever knocking them off the little stand (a spice rack stand from Target). So then I moved it over to the top of my Expedit shelf, which is my sewing station, and guess what happened every time I tried to sew something?

Sooooo... I made some changes. Want to see?!! :-)

I bought an old printers drawer from a flea market for $5. Yes, I said five bucks! G added some picture framing hardware and mounted this to the wall for me. Its just inside the door, on a blank space of wall that needed 'something', and it is both out of the way AND easily visible from my chair. It also holds a lot more wood-mount stamps - nearly all I own except for 3-4 Stampin Up sets that live in their storage boxes in a drawer. (I didn't want to split those setsup). You can see the slots are fairly small, so my background stamps just live on top. Also, see that art up there? I took Christy Tomlinson's She Art workshop, after seeing Nicole's GORGEOUS work, and this is the only one I actually finished! I don't love it, but its growing on me! Also, that green wall paint? Seven years ago it
was a bright pea/kiwi green, but I get so
much sun in this room, it faded to a more muted sagey kind of color - weird.

Below is my work table - the cleanest its EVER been since G built it for me when we moved in. The top is his work; the legs are sawhorse style from IKEA. Notice the cleaned up paper area?And, the ribbons, ink pad and PTI CD cases are all gone? More room for my laptop to live while I'm working, and much tidier. Yes, those are two Ott lights. I cant work at night without them,since the room has no overhead lights and the other lamps are terrible. Also see the big square on the table surface that is darker than everything else? That is where my big self-healing cutting mat lives. He was drip drying in the shower after a
good scrub down when I took this photo ;-)

OK, so now you see a great shot of the place where the ribbon dowel rods USED to live! SO much tidier! And I moved the CD rack of PTI stamps and the ink pad storage over onto this little (ugly!) green dresser that lives next to the old microwave cart that lives to the left of my table. See the basket in the top shelf of the white cabinet? All of my small jars of buttons live in there! And, that green box on the microwave cart shelf? I used that for all of my lesser usedribbon spools. (I put about 1/3 of my ribbon in here, another 1/3 went to the yard sale box, and the final 1/3 is coming up in a photo below!)

Alright last but not least! Back in college, I was a poor art major. I bought this plastic cart to keep all of my supplies in my dorm room. Its been with me ever since! It fits perfectly under my table. The top two drawers store pens, post its, small embellishments like brads, etc. Its especially handy for those kinds of pens that don't like to be stored vertically. But its the bottom two deeper drawers that are most amazing!

Every time I buy a PTI set, like many PTI fans, I save the clear acetate box that the sets come in. Some are about an inch thick, while others are about 1/2 inch. Well, I found a use for them! I took every one I had and cut off the top flaps. I think I had about 20 total. They stand up PERFECTLY in the larger bottom drawers of this little plastic cart. So I put 10 or so in each drawer. In the bottom drawer is all of my PTI and frequently used ribbon. I cut pieces of mat board down to 3" x 6" and wrapped each ribbon around a piece of mat board. I secured the end with a paper clip, but I'm going to try rubber bands if the clips leave a mark. I can fit 4 standing wrapped mat board pieces in one of the larger PTI boxes and 2 in the smaller PTI boxes. The photo doesn't do it justice, but I am pretty darn proud of myself and this idea!

So the ribbons are in the bottom drawer. In the 3rd drawer down, I made the same 'pockets' from PTI boxes, this time sorting my cardstock and patterned paper scraps! I have one for patterned paper, one for white/cream, one for black/brown, one for other neutrals (mostly kraft), one for pink/red orange, one for yellow/green, and one for blue/purple. Already I find myself reaching for scraps instead of cutting into another full sheet, because its so much easier to find what I need!

Behind the ribbon and scrap paper pockets you can see I stashed some embellishments and things that needed a home close to my table, but didn't need to live ON it :-)

So, if you're still here, thank you :-) I hope this little tour inspires someone. If you have questions or would like to see more detailed pictures, just let me know!

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Countdown to Christmas - Day 12

Here are a few variations on a theme that I did this year - probably about a dozen in total. They were a great way to use up some scraps!

The cards are small 3x5 cards, which I've really been into this year. The circles are popped up on dimensional adhesive (I get mine from Jody), and the frames are hand drawn. (I made these cards before I got the new PTI 'Framed' set. But let me share - Claire's frame set is very similar in size to PTI's and I like her sentiments more. Plus, the opening in her frames is a little larger, leaving more room to use OTHER sentiments as well!)

Nothing else fancy in these cards. Tonight I'm making this for dinner and hopefully writing out my last batch of cards so I can post them tomorrow. Happy Sunday!

Saturday, December 11, 2010

Countown to Christmas - Day 11

So yesterday I mentioned that PTI get-together in Ohio. I made a couple of THIS design that day too. Stamping Idol (yes, she really is an IDOL!), carpool buddy and my new friend Belinda also brought along her Waltzingmouse stamps for us to play with. I combined the text background and sentiment from WM with some more of those punched-and-stamped snowflakes from PTI.

I just received the latest Papercrafts magazine in the mail and learned that I may be ahead of the curve! According to one of the features in this month's issue, grey is the new black, especially when combined with a pop of another accent color. Listen, this was an happy accident - I have never been trendy in my life! :-)

Friday, December 10, 2010

Countdown to Christmas - Day 10

Back in October I had a chance to get together with a bunch of ladies from the PTI forum at the Archivers in Fairlawn, Ohio. We had SOO much fun, its a miracle we got any stamping done at all! But my new friend Pat brought her PTI Snowfall, Additions, and corresponding punches for me to play with and I made a couple of this particular design. Its one of my favorites of this year, I just love everything about it - the color combo, the gems on the punched-and-stamped snowflake, the bit of twine, EVERYTHING! And of course, I love snowflake images so it was fun to play with some new snowflakes, too!

I thought it would be fun to share our group photo too! We had so much fun, we have decided to get together regularly - I was so bummed that I couldn't make the December gathering, but I am totally looking forward to February already!

Back row left to right:
Me, Pat, Kirsty, Lindsay, Rebecca's mom

Front row left to right:
Rebecca, Stephanie, Belinda

Wednesday, December 08, 2010

Countdown to Christmas - My Anniversary

Our family has a lot going on in December - lots of birthdays on top of the holidays. Then 9 years ago, G and I went and got married in December and so we have one more thing to celebrate this month.

I created this little 'love' card in honor of our 9th wedding anniversary today, using PTI's On My Couch, Couch Additions and I think the dog and lamp (made into a ceiling light!) are from Chairished. The red-orange cardstock is from Paper Source, though it is very similar to PTI's Terra Cotta.

Monday, December 06, 2010

Countdown to Christmas - Day 6

OK so technically I skipped day 5. And I PROMISE to stop with the stripes soon - it just happened that I used them a lot this year, apparently!

Just a quickie today. Sorry for the dark photo but I think everything is self explanatory. Several PTI sets, inks, dies and papers here!

Saturday, December 04, 2010

Countdown to Christmas - Day 4

For the past couple of years my boss has been trying to do a staff holiday dinner at her house. And every year - its snowed and no one has made it! This year we're on, come hell or high water :-)

So I picked up a bottle of wine I know she and her husband will like, and made this little 4x4 card to go with it. I just got PTI's First Fruits and Warm Hospitality recently, and this is the first card I've made with it. I really like this set - its fun and so many possibilities! I just need to get my head around some colors for it other than brown and green :-)

Friday, December 03, 2010

Countdown to Christmas - Day 3

This is one of my favorites of the year. I borrowed a few ideas from different cards I've seen published lately, and combined them to make it my own. Again with the PTI distressed stripes, and of course my FAVORITE set ever - Snowflake Serenade.

Hmm. Not much else to tell, so we'll keep it short and sweet today.

Three in a row - its a Christmas miracle :-)

Thursday, December 02, 2010

Countdown to Christmas - Day 2

How about a little holiday packaging today! I used this template from SCS, but modified the size a bit to make it more like a tote bag. This is a perfect size to hold a small note set, or - as I'm planning to do - two boxes of Starbucks VIA coffee!

This is, I believe, American Crafts paper from a couple of years ago. I recently purged a ton of my patterned paper since I use it so rarely, but I did hang on to most of my holiday papers.

The ribbon is a stitched felt from Michaels. No clue what brand it is but I'll tell you - like most felt, it is tough to get it to stay stuck down!


Wednesday, December 01, 2010

Countdown to Christmas!

The past two years, I've intended to do a '25 days of Christmas' thing here on the blog, where I post a new holiday card every day in December. But both times, its completely fallen apart before Christmas!!!

So this year we're just going to call it the Countdown. And hopefully I'll get something posted every day, but if not, don't shoot me :-)

First up is a little card that looks more simple than it is. I stamped the background using PTI's distressed stripes, then filled in the gaps with a brown Copic multiliner and a white gel pen. The white block is stamped with the Season's Greetings frame from PTI's Peaceful Poinsettia and the stars are from Believe. I like the idea, but the distressed stripes are a little hard to line up - I wish they were each a little bit longer.

OK friends, hoping to see you tomorrow!