Saturday, December 26, 2009

Just Us Girls Challenge #13

Merry Christmas everyone!  I know, yesterday was the big day, but we type these posts in advance so as I sit here typing, it IS Christmas.  A nice, relaxing evening with my family...tummy full of ham and pie, and watching Christmas movies.  I love the holidays spent in peace

So, today my daughter and husband made my Christmas very special.  My daughter bought me a scarf I have been wanting and some expensive VS perfume that I've been eyeballing for a YEAR, with her own money!  I cannot believe she spent that much on me!  She is so generous...such a sweet girl :]

My husband bought me the one big thing I really wanted - a sewing machine!!  YAY!  No more hours of hand stitching...that's for the birds!  Now I just have to figure out how to use this thing ;o)  LOL  Wish me luck!!  I'm sure I'll be googling tutorials.

I'm excited to announce that Just Us Girls decided NOT to forego a challenge over the Christmas holiday!  We did this primarily because this is one of those holidays that a lot of people find some relaxing craft time away from work!  So, we went forward with the 3-D/Template challenge.  This week is extra special, not only because sweet Dana is hosting but also because we have our first sponsor, Kelleigh Ratzlaff!  We all used one of her templates from the Digi Chick for the challenge.  They are so much fun!  BIG thanks to Dana for making the arrangments and Kelleigh for her generosity!!  Our challenge to you is to use one of Kelleigh's templates, another company's templates, or create one of your own.  An optional twist is to use the color blue!

You'll see that I kind of forgot about the blue part until after I finished my project :|  Whoops!  Sorry Dana :[  I chose Kelleigh's Hexagon Box for my project and created a Santa!  He's holding lots of my favorite treat - Reese's Peanut Butter cups!  YUMMM.

For the middle layer I printed the large box at 85% the regular size.  I printed it onto some MTME Pretty Printables paper that I designed.  I thought the red/gray Throw Me A Line paper would be perfect for his "pants" and the red That Hit the Spot paper would be fab as his shirt!  I was so happy with the end result!  It turned out just as I had imagined :O)

I drew an arm and mitten on cs, cut them out and just held them on felt and trimmed around them twice to get both arms/hands.  I glued the mittens to the arms with Zip Dry and glued some Bernat Lu Lu yarn around the wrist.  I did the same for the hat :]  Isn't it cute?! 

The beard is actually a section of chenille stems from Michaels.  I trimmed one and glued the chenille using Zip Dry.  Added a red, felt nose, some googly eyes and pink cheeks, and my "head" was done!  After I added the belt, buttons and arms to the middle and bottom layers, I was finished with those!  So super easy :O)

We certainly hope you can play along this week!  Kelleigh is offering some goodies over at sure to check it out and add a link to your project using Mr. Linky to be in the running!  You will also be in the running for our next Chic of the Week also!!  If you upload to any online galleries, please use keyword JUGS13 so that we can see your creations in one place!

Don't forget to stop by the team members' blogs for some awesome eye candy!  Seriously, you won't believe what these ladies came up with this week!  SUPER inspirational!!  Kelleigh is a guest designer this week so please stop by her blog and give her some love also :)

I hope that you and yours had a relaxing, warm, peaceful Christmas with those you love.  Thanks so much for stopping by today.  Happy Holidays!  Be safe ♥

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Just Us Girls Challenge #12...and more My Time Made Easy

Happy Saturday everyone!!  It's so hard to believe I only have 6 more days until Christmas!  UGH.  I left this weekend open to finish up my shopping and to send what are sure to be belated Christmas gifts to my family in Michigan...BUT as luck would have it, we are expecting 15-24 inches of snow tonight and tomorrow!  Keep in mind I'm in Northern Virginia and we didn't have ANY snow this morning...We're already working on about four inches as I type (I think).  So, I suspect I'll be snowed in all day tomorrow which is kind of a mixed blessing.  I love "snow days" where we just relax and enjoy spending time together, BUT...that pesky shopping is weighing on my mind!  ;]  Anywho...enough about my woes :)

Today marks week #12 over at Just Us Girls!!  Hard to believe we are finishing up our third month already.  Seems like just yesterday we decided to branch off on our own and start this new challenge blog.  We are so THRILLED that you all seem to enjoy our variety of challenges and on the flip side, we LOVE seeing your gorgeous creations each week!!  Soooo, why not keep up the eye candy and play along with our awesome color challenge this week?!  Tracey is our host and selected this STUNNING palette:

I decided to use one of Lauren's new templates being offered through her store, My Time Made Easy ™ LLC instead of making a card.  I chose the Holiday Sled© template and made it into a gate to hold my wreath! 

I cut my gate from kraft paper and smeared Tim Holtz' Vintage Photo Distress Ink using the edge of the ink pad.  To create my bolts and the handle for my gate, I ran black cs through my paper crimper in two directions to give a wrought iron look.  I punched the handle using the SU! Round Tab Punch and trimmed a vertical section from the middle.  I adhered the two pieces side by side on a smaller piece of cs and rolled it around the fat end of a stipple brush to make it "pop up".  I attached it using small black brads and two tiny pieces of Scor Tape.  Looking back at this project, I have to say I'm most proud of this silly handle :O)  LOL 

I used a pipe cleaner to shape my circle for the wreath and tied bits of PTI New Leaf satin ribbon around it.  I added some "berries" using red, wire, craft stamens, added a big, red polka dot bow with jingle bells and hooked it over my gate.  If you're wondering where I incorporated "raspberry" into my project, you see that little bird nestled in the center of my wreath?  You guessed it!  It's stamped in raspberry ink :O)

On the back I did use the sled rails but I trimmed the curved edges off so that I could use my gate as a wall hanging also.  I love the vintage look of an old gate with a fresh wreath on it.  I think I'll display it with my holiday decorations this year ;]

Well...that's all I have to share today!  I'll be back in a day or two with my Cutesy Cover© project that coordinates with my In A Pinch© project from yesterday :O) 

Please be sure to stop by the rest of the girls' blogs and leave some love!  They're sure to inspire you with their amazing projects!!  All of their links are in my left sidebar <-------

If you play along be sure to link your post over at JUGS using Mr. Linky and use keyword JUGS12 if you upload to any online galleries!

Thanks for stopping by today!  Hope you have a wonderful, safe, relaxing weekend :]

Friday, December 18, 2009

BIG ANNOUNCEMENT...My Secret, Behind the Scenes Work ;]

So, today is the day!!  My BIG announcement about all of my work behind the scenes!!  Many of you are aware of Lauren Meader's new venture in starting her own online store called My Time Made Easy ™ LLC. is also the day that Lauren is launching her store!  YAY!!!  Finally ;]  Be sure to grab her blinkie and sign up for the newsletter if you haven't yet!  That's where you will receive the code for a FREE template ;]  If you are signed up for the newsletter, make sure you find it in your email so that you can grab the code and use it before it expires on Christmas!!

My Time Made Easy

Lauren is offering Pretty Packaging© (her AWESOME templates), Pretty Impressions© (her NEW, ADORABLE stamp line), and Pretty Printables© (digital paper packs) designed by yours truly, ME!  OMG!!!  Yes, Lauren asked ME to design her digital paper line for My Time Made Easy ™ LLC!!!!  PINCH me, please ;] 

Speaking of pinching me, one of Lauren's AWESOME templates being offered for sale is "In A Pinch©"!!  She debuted this template last month on her blog and received a HUGE response from her readers...with good reason!  Just LOOK at this adorable, "pinched" box!  Isn't it cute?
It looks difficult to put together, but that's the amazing thing about Lauren's templates!  She does all the hard work so that we don't have to!  This went together in a jif!  Oh, and it holds a TON of stuff!  Look at everything (minus the coffee mug) that fits inside of this!  2 bags of Ghiradelli chocolate and caramel flavored coffee, 2 vanilla cookie sticks, and a pouch of Ghiradelli cocoa...AND I had room to spare.  I could have easily added a little bag of chocolate chips or caramels to go with the coffee!  When you untie the ribbon the pinched area expands to the same dimensions as the rest of the box, so it's no trouble adding those things that JUST fit (like two small bags of coffee).

I used eyelash yarn to single-crochet a length that I glued to the curved lines of my striped panel.  I also crocheted a flower using the same yarn in the hopes that it would turn out looking like a big snowflake.  I think it looks more like a snowball than a snowflake, but it's different and cute so I went with it!  LOL

Sooo...check out that striped paper and the snowflake punched from the blue snowflake paper!  Oh, and check out the top of my box, you can see a peek of my blue polka dot paper. Isn't it striking?! I LOVE it!  Yep...that's the paper I made! 

We are releasing three, 12-page sets of Pretty Printables© digital paper packs today:

The 12 Days of Snowflakes©
That Hit the Spot©
Throw Me A Line©

The 12 Days of Snowflakes© is being offered as a permanent FREE download, so be sure to grab it and whip up those last minute projects just in time for Christmas!! All three packs coordinate perfectly with each other. That Hit the Spot© is being offered for only $3! That's a 50% discount!!! Be sure to scoop that up before it reverts back to regular price! Throw Me A Line© is a striking collection of complementary colors that are sooo versatile - especially when coordinating with The 12 Days of Snowflakes© and That Hit the Spot© papers!

Oh and don't forget to check out the amazing templates!!! Cutesy Cover© is a permanent FREE template as well and you can view Lauren's gorgeous sample using the snowflake paper in the store ;] Isn't it pretty?! Let me tell you, it is by far the easiest template I've ever put together! I have so many ideas for this can view one of them in a few days if you keep up with my blog ;]

If you create anything using the paper I designed, please feel free to send me an email so that I can view it!  I'm so excited to see what others do with my Pretty Printables© paper! 
If you haven't read the big announcement on Lauren's blog yet, make sure you swing by to get all the deets and to check out the ultra talented design team ♥
This is a HUGE, exciting venture for me!  I hope you join me and show me what you can do with the Pretty Printables© paper and the coordinating Pretty Packaging© and Pretty Impressions©!  Thank you for allowing me to share my excitement!!!  Hope you all have a wonderful holiday and are over-prepared for the big day ;]  I for one am BEHIND! 
See you back here tomorrow for another fun challenge from Just Us Girls!

Saturday, December 12, 2009

Just Us Girls Challenge #11

So, it has been another week since I've posted, which lately means it's time for another challenge over at Just Us Girls!  LOL  My time has definitely been consumed in a GOOD way - behind the scenes ;]  That will all become transparent soon enough...but for now, let's get into the challenge I'm hosting at JUGS this week!  It's week 2 of the month which means technique time!  I chose the Chalkboard Technique!  I've never done this technique and it's easy enough, so why not?!  PLUS, who uses those chalks we bought from Stampin' Up! ages ago?  Seriously, mine have been sitting patiently on the shelf for years...just as quiet as can be...totoally ignored.  I thought it was high time to break them out!

The Challenge

My Card

I used a stamp set I won from Unity while I was at Stampin Around Philly.  Cool, huh?  I used the colors in my patterned paper and chose a nice chocolate base because I LOVE brown, especially when paired with pink or red (or in this case, BOTH).  How about that felt, saddle stitched ribbon?!  I LOVE it!  I bought it for a dollar at Michaels on sale in the holiday ribbon section.  I WISH I had grabbed more.  I might have to make another trip to see what their supply is like ;]  Hopefully I can find some more colors as well.

The rest of the card is pretty simple...and self-explanatory, so I'll spare you the details!  Looking for MORE inspiration?!  Swing by the rest of the teams' blogs and check out their beautiful creations! {<---- links in my left sidebar} They're STUNNING!!  Also, if you are able to play along this week, please link your card using Mr. Linky over at JUGS and also use keyword JUGS11 in any online galleries.

Saturday, December 5, 2009

Just Us Girls Challenge #10

Wow!  It has been a whole week and I haven't posted anything?!  OMG.  I've been busier than I thought!  I'm doing some hush hush stuff behind the scenes plus I have been studying for a big promotion test I took on Wednesday.  Now that the test is over, hopefully I can get AHEAD of the game and play along with my favorite challenges regularly!  Wish me luck on that one!  LOL

Today marks the 10th week over at Just Us Girls!  Today's challenge is an awesome sketch hosted by Pam!  So many options with this one...especially with Christmas right around the corner.  Those circles could be turned into a LOT of things ;]  I won't give you ideas...I'll just peruse your original creations as they pour in :O)  Here's Pam's sketch:

...and here is my take on it:

I stamped the outlined poinsettia's from Melissa Bickford's PTI Peaceful Poinsettia set, using SU! Chocolate Chip ink on some awesome, vintage pink and red damask paper that my sister sent to me!  I cut out 6 layers of poinsettia's in three sizes and layered them using dimensionals.  I adhered brown pearl rhinestones from Michaels in the centers and added some cool olive and artichoke colored branches using a Martha Stewart punch.  I cut out my rectangle using a long rectangle Nestability and sponged it with SU! Pink Pirouette ink before removing it from the die.  The sentiment is from the same Peaceful Poinsettia set...I stamped it using Memento, Tuxedo Black ink.  Isn't it striking?! 

The background paper is from the same pack of Basic Gray Nook and Pantry, that Tammy gave me in Philly :O)  Boy am I making good use of it!  I am having a hard time holding myself back from buying a collection of different packs for my craft room!  The brads are American Craft (I trimmed the backs using wire cutteres and adhered them with a double layer of glue dots so that I wouldn't have unsightly prongs on the interior of my card) and the ribbon is PTI Dark Chocolate Twill.

My color palette came from the AMAZING Color Throwdown challenge (CTD71) Danielle presented to us on Wednesday!  Isn't is a fab combo?  RIGHT up my alley...

Okay, that's all I have for you tonight.  I JUST got home from my daughter's gymnastics meet in PA, so I'm beat!  Hope you can all play along with our JUGS challenge!  If you do, be sure to:

1 - Check out the incredible inspiration from our talented DT.  <---- links are in my left sidebar
2 - Link your card using Mr. Linky over at Just Us Girls
3 - Use keyword JUGS10 if you upload to any online galleries