Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Hey Everyone!  It's Merilee here, back after a long absence.  I hope you are all enjoying this busy holiday season.  We've been especially busy here.  In the last month we found out we are going to be transferred from our home here in Atlanta to Nashville, Tennessee!  We lived in Tennessee six years ago, but we were on the eastern part of the state.  This time we'll be living in a suburb of Nashville.

We were happily living our lives working on home improvement projects when we got the news.  We were not expecting it at all; so, needless to say, my husband and I have been frantically finishing up our projects around the house in order to put our home on the market.  We accomplished almost everything on our list and we now have a big sign in our yard and are on constant alert in case prospective buyers are interested in touring our home.

I haven't had a lot of time for creating until now, and it's hard to do much since I don't want to make much of a mess.  I don't know about you, but my work space gets super messy when I'm working, lol!  Not only that, my art studio has been moved from the formal dining room down to the basement.  I wasn't happy about that at all, but we wanted our home to appeal to as many buyers as possible--not just the artsy ones, lol!  :o}  Since the weather has gotten a bit colder, the basement (which is unfinished) is a bit chilly.  So I've been hauling things up as I need them and I now have half of my art studio on my kitchen table, lol!  (I told you I was messy!)

The project I'm sharing today is my Christmas wreath and new little tree I made for my front porch.  I saw these darling trees made from cones covered with glass ornaments in Target and thought..."I can make that!"  So that's just what I set out to do.  The problem is that I ran out of ornaments before I got to the bottom, so I filled in with holly leaves.  Those little glitches along the way always turn into happy accidents at the end--as if they were always meant to be!

I also bought a wire-rimmed wreath at Walmart and decided to create a new wreath for our front door.  I wanted to make a nice presentation for prospective buyers.  (Not to mention the fact that I seem to have buried my Christmas boxes when I moved my art studio downstairs.)  :o}

I picked up a bag of those cinnamon scented pine cones and attached them to the wreath, along with some pretty silk flowers and a red velvet bow.  I also added some twisted glass ornaments for a bit of sparkle.

It was fun creating something new for my front porch this year.  We've been so busy going through boxes, getting rid of things and consolidating things, as well as otherwise preparing our home for sale, I needed a good project to work on to bring me back the pure and simple enjoyment of this holiday season.  This project was just what the doctor ordered.

So we are officially moving...something I really hadn't grasped until the sign was finally erected in our yard.  I will certainly miss Atlanta--we had hoped our moving days were over and we would someday retire here, but life is an adventure always changing.  We will trust in The Lord and gladly go where He wants us to be.  So...Tennessee, here we come!  :o)

I wish each one of you a wonderful holiday season!  I hope to make another post before Christmas, but if I cannot, I send you all the very best during the holidays--my favorite season of all!


Monday, October 31, 2011

Happy Spooky Halloween!!!

Hi Everyone!  Happy Halloween!  Hope you enjoy a S-P-O-O-K-Y night filled with costumes, candy and fun!

This is a card I did for a client a year or so ago, whose friend happens to celebrate her birthday on Halloween.  It is an easel card featuring the Bride of Frankenstein which I think is worthy of an encore.

Traditional black and orange just didn't work since it was a birthday card as well as a Halloween card.  I had so much fun making it grungy and spooky!

I used the Happy Hauntings Cricut Cartridge to cut all of the spooky pieces.  Frankenstein's wife has lots of fun extras but, unfortunately, the camera failed to do her justice.

The lovely Bride was cut from a pale green cardstock and shaded with a darker green colored pencil.  If you look closely, you'll see that she has earrings, a necklace and a ring--she is a bride, after all.  The "mirror" was cut from metal and mounted underneath a spiderweb frame.  I shaded the mirror front in various places and adhered a scary face, as if she were speaking to "Mirror, Mirror on the Wall".  And, of course, she IS the fairest of them all!!  LOL!

Her eyes were layered with the Cricut cuts and then filled with glossy accents.  (You all know how much I LOVE Glossy Accents, lol!)  In this case, it added depth and made them look especially eerie!  I also hand cut long, full eyelashes and applied them just as I would false eyelashes.  After all, this lovely lady needed perfect makeup for her wedding!!  Her lips were also filled with Glossy accents, as I was certain the bride of Frankenstein would have nothing less than blood red, dripping wet lips!

You really cannot see it very well, but I fussy cut a corset for this little lady and outlined the tiny details with Glossy Accents so it would have a "patent leather" appeal.  I also carefully shaded her body and her dress to emphasize her assets, as well as the detail in the gown.  The flared sleeves at the wrist were not a part of the original gown design, so I fussy cut them separate and applied them with pop dots so her hands beneath were still visible.

In this photo you can see the detail in her lovely coiffure.  I detailed her hair with colored pencil and used electric blue hologram paper to highlight her streak.  After I cut the hair using my Cricut Expression, I chose to fussy cut the hair further in order to fit around her ear in a specific way.  I wanted her earrings to show, of course!

The words at the top of the card were creepy as they were, but I added Glossy Accents to the drips to make it look a little bit creepier!

The bottom of the card was accented with a row of ribbon and old lace.  And I couldn't forget an extra change of shoes!  The spiders are her lovely pets and are with her at all times.

The background paper was embossed, inked and ripped in various places to featured old, tattered lace sticking out here and there.

I wish these photos were a little more clear.  This card was far spookier in person than it appears in these terrible photos. I apologize for my bad photography.

This is, by far, one of my favorite cards ever!  Thanks for joining me again today.  Have a happy Halloween!


Back-to-School Backpacks

Happy Monday and Happy Halloween!!  Since it is Halloween I should be posting something festive for the occasion, but since I'm playing catch-up these days (sorry...my bad...), this will be a quick post featuring the back-to-school backpack project I promised in my last post.

These backpacks were made from the Tags, Bags, Boxes and More cartridge.  I cut them in my grandchildren's favorite colors and covered them with back to school paper.

I added a little handle at the top, as well as the shoulder straps in the back, with coordinating ribbon.  Then I attached a matching brad from which I hung a small name tag.

Each backpack was filled with tiny goodies and mailed, along with a coordinating card and treat bags.  The kids loved them!

Hope you enjoyed today's post.  Have a happy Halloween!


Friday, October 28, 2011

Back-to-School Spinner Card - III

Hi! This is my last post in a three-part series of spinner cards.
This little girl features a cute little grin, bows on her pigtails, as well as a bow around her waste.  This card was also cut with the Wildcard Cricut Cartridge and the little girl was cut with the Everyday Paper Doll cartridge.  The backpack was filled with goodies and sent to my granddaughter along with the card.  It will be featured in a separate post.

As you turn the wheel, her darling little grin turns into a cute smile.  Colored pencils were used to shade her body and fill in her face.  Glossy accents filled her eyes, lips and nails, and little seed pearls act as buttons.

In one more turn of the wheel, she has gone from happy to sad!  Her tears seem so real, filled in with glossy accents.  As before, her backpack is filled with goodies and will be featured in another post.

I was quite pleased with how these spinner cards turned out.  Because I was careful to create a very loose fit with the cardstock that covered the inside, the wheel was able to turn with ease.

I hope you enjoyed this series and I look forward to seeing you again soon!


Back-to-School Spinner Card - II

Hi everyone!  This is the second in a three-part series of spinner cards.  This card is a little girl and was made for my granddaughter.  As I mentioned in my previous post, I sent it along with a box of goodies to begin the school year.
The card and envelope was made using my Cricut Expression and Wildcard cartridge.  The little girl was made using my Everyday Paper Doll Cartridge.  For the faces I used one of my Peachy Keen stamp collections.  Isn't she too cute?  She reminds me of my granddaughter.
The first face is a cute little girl's grin.  I colored her face with colored pencils and filled in her lips and her nails with red colored pencil, topped with glossy accents.
This expression is a smile, plain and simple.  Her eyes are penciled in with brown, topped with glossy accents, as well.  I just love that stuff--it makes everything come to life!  I used ribbon and tiny little seed pearls for her buttons.
As on the previous little boy, I filled in her tears with glossy accents.  I also used my white opaque pen to add a little detail to her shoes.
 The inside of the card features a vertical strip of the designer paper, as well as a few dimensional sticker embellishments.

The spinning wheel turns quite nice and my granddaughter got such a kick out of turning it to see all of her expressions.

I was very happy the way the card turned out.  The little backpack was filled with goodies and will be featured in another post.

That's it for the second in this series.  There is one more to follow.

Thanks for visiting my blog today!


Back-to-School Spinner Card - I

Hi everyone!  TGIF and happy upcoming weekend!  

Today I'm featuring the first in a series of three back-to-school spinner cards that I made using my Cricut Expression and Wildcard Cartridge.  I made these cards for my grandchildren and sent them along with a box full of goodies to begin the new school year.
I used faces from one of my Peachy Keen stamp collections.  The little boy was cut from the Everyday Paper Doll Cricut Cartridge.
This little fella has three faces.  First is his smiling face...
Next is his frowny face...
And last the poor little fella is crying.  I think he misses his mommy!

I used glossy accents on the eyes in the first two faces.  I also used it over the tears in this last face.  I shaded in various places on his face, his hands and his body using my colored pencils.  I used clear accents for the buttons on his shirt and also used my colored pencils on his collar and sleeve cuffs, as well as his blue jeans and tennis shoes.
For the ties on his tennies I threaded some white embroidery floss through and tied it in bows.  He's also got cute little patches on his jeans!
The inside of the card is decorated using some fun dimensional stickers.

The envelope was cut with the Wildcard Cartridge, as well, and I lined it with matching designer paper.  I also cut a backpack and filled it with goodies, but that will be featured a different post.

Hope you enjoyed the first in a series of three matching spinner cards.  The next two will follow!

Thanks for joining me today.  Have a great weekend!


Thursday, October 27, 2011

Origami Diamond Tuck Card - III

Hi all!  This is my last post for today and my last post using the Origami Diamond Tuck Card base.  I just had to share one last variation.

On this card I used some pretty punched trim and slipped it inside the upper flap.

The flower embellishment was made from small circles I cut using my circle punch.  I folded each one twice and glued them together, inserting a pearl in the center.  I then attached a side bow to give it a different twist.

The cardstock I used for the punched border wasn't very sturdy, so I added an acrylic panel underneath for support, which I upcycled from my Cricut cartridge blister packaging.  I just love reusing things in unexpected ways!

The inside is rather understated, with a simple phrase and a sparkly leaf.  

And that's it for today's post!  Have a wonderful Thursday and I'll be back soon with more creative fold cards!


Origami Diamond Tuck Card - II

Hello everyone!  Thanks for visiting my blog today.  This is my second post using the Origami Diamond Tuck Card base.

This is a birthday card for my sister.  The paper color combinations are a bit unusual, but I like them very much.  They suit my sister's personality perfectly!

As you can see, the card top tucks inside the diamond to hold it securely closed.

I combined flowers--one sugared flower with a paper flower on top.  I pulled the stamens through the center.

The bow is attached in separate pieces underneath the flower.  I wanted to follow the lines in the paper.

I added a bit of hand sewing to the inside rim, along with a metal embellishment.

The inside is embellished with another flower, as well as a small card tucked inside...

This is a view of the backside of the card.

And, of course, a pretty envelope to match.

I hope you enjoyed this card.  I have one more to follow soon!

Have a great day!


Origami Diamond Tuck Card - I

Hi again!  This is another creative fold card.  I decided to name this card "Origami Diamond Tuck Card" because I thought that best describes this particular card, although I did not design the fold myself.  This card base is made from one 12x12 piece of cardstock intricately folded into this wonderful shape.  I loved it so much that I decided to make more than one variation on the same card fold.  This is the first of three postings, all with different themes.  So let's get started!

This is a birthday card I made for my new son-in-law.  The papers and embellishments are neither masculine nor feminine and could be used for any kind of greeting.
These are photos of the card when it is closed.

The upper fold slips inside the diamond to hold it closed.

Each side panel opens to reveal something new. (I just love unexpected surprises!)  :o)

This was a darling stamp I found in the dollar bin--perfect for this application, don't you think?

I used some paper scraps and punched some small leaves to embellish the inside panels.  I hate to waste any beautiful patterned paper!

Of course, I simply HAD to make a cute envelope to go with the card!

That's it for this one!  

I hope you enjoyed this post.  I have a couple more variations on this card base that I will share with you soon.

Thank you for visiting my blog and have a wonderful day!