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Sizzix Triple Play Blog Hop Week 1: Gingerbread House

Welcome to the Sizzix Triple Play Blog Hop!

Halloween is over, so Christmas is just ahead!  Ok, not really.  In fact, I have a personal rule about not decorating for Christmas until after Thanksgiving.

Except…when I saw this cute house die designed by my friend Eileen Hull, I knew I had to make it into a gingerbread house.  Oh well, rules are made to be broken, right?    Happy Thanksgivmas!

gingerbread house christmas craft

For this project, each of us started out with the following Sizzix products:

#65279;Sizzix Scoreboards Pro Die – House, 3D, by Eileen Hull
Sizzix 12×12 matboard, white
Sizzix Big Shot Pro die cutting machine

I started by assembling the house base using double sided tape and brads.  I like to assemble the Scoreboards dies before painting so I can get the edges covered without touch-ups.  I applied two  quick coats of a 1:1 mixture of DecoArt Texturizing medium and Americana acrylic paint in Light Cinnamon, leaving the tops of both roof pieces, the fence, windows, and door frame white.

To get a fun faux-snow/icing look to the roof pieces and window frames, I applied Marvy Puffy Velvet Fabric Markers and heat set the pieces when dry.  I made the peppermint candies for the roof with a quick swish of white paint on some wooden discs and some red glitter glue, with a coat of Diamond Glaze for a smooth finish.  The red glitter glue also added the perfect peppermint touch for the door frame.

sizzix gingerbread house craft door

Of course I can’t just leave well enough alone, I’m a detail girl.  I glued on some premade glittery candy cane and gumdrop buttons, and used one of the brad punch-outs for a doorknob.

sizzix gingerbread house die side view

The matboard fence made its way over to the side of the house, surrounding a lollipop tree made with white cardstock and Clearsnap’s Design Adhesives.  The fence also gets a holiday makeover with a Clearsnap Smooch garland and a tiny red ribbon bow.

sizzix gingerbread house detail

I finished up with some pale yellow cardstock to give a warm glow inside the windowpanes, and an itty bitty foil and Smooch decorated tree peeking out to show some holiday spirit.   Did I mention that I love details?

To check out the next of 60 blog hop projects, use the navigation buttons at the top of the sidebar over there ————————>

or use the master list here:  Sizzix blog hop master list.

Thanks for hopping by!  Tune in next week to see Karin Burniston’s Pop-Up Cube!

Until next time…


November 4, 2010 at 11:55 am 27 comments

Back from the CHA Summer Show

Why yes, I do remember I have a blog!  Not that you’d be able to tell from looking at it.  The blog guilt has been eating me alive!

I took a little break to finish up the school year and have some fine family fun during the summer, but as the kids gear up to return to school (AAK! -Already?) I’m gearing up to return to the internet.

Those of you who are crafters may know that the Craft and Hobby Association (CHA) held its summer trade show in Chicago last week.  I normally work the show in some capacity as a freelance designer, and this year was no different.  I had the opportunity to demonstrate the new Designer Foils, Design Adhesives, and Archival Dye Inks for Clearsnap.  Can I tell you how incredibly wonderful it is to work in the Clearsnap booth?   It is truly a great company filled with great people (and great products!).

Have you ever volunteered for something, only to think immediately “Yikes! What have I just done?”  I did that this week too.

I had the pleasure of meeting Tiffany Windsor, host of Cool2Craft, in Chicago as well.  When she had an unexpected cancellation in her Thursday show line-up and came to Clearsnap to fill it, guess who offered to help.   Yes, the person who hates the sound of her own voice volunteered to broadcast it live for 8 minutes. Many thanks to Lisa Fulmer for putting me at ease!

My Cool2Craft Clearsnap Foil Segment is about 32:00 minutes into the show.

I also taught three class sessions in the Clearsnap booth.  We created a 6×6″ mini scrapbook page filled with stamping, heat embossing, glitter, Smooch Illuminate, Design Adhesives, and a host of other things.  I wanted to make sure everyone left having experienced a variety of techniques and products.  The classes were videotaped, and will be edited down to a short demonstration to appear on Clearsnap’s website.  I’ll be sure to link when it is available, assuming I can stand to link to my own voice again.  🙂

Also thanks to Lisa for taking one of the only photos of me at the show (Demo-ing for Clearsnap at Peterson-Arne).  For the first time ever, I didn’t bring my camera to the show.  I think I took a few on my iphone, but those were mostly with friends.  I came home thinking there wasn’t much that caught my eye, and as I looked around at other designer’s blogs I realized why.  There was an influx of vintage at this show.  And while I appreciate vintage, I don’t like working with it much.  I’m more of a bold and bright girl than a soft and frilly one.

I lean more toward the bright geometrics of the new Echo Park collections and Jillibean Soup’s Atomic Soup collection.  These two companies managed to stop me in my tracks and take a second look.  And frankly, Atomic Soup is the kind of line a nerdy girl with two biology degrees and a career in crafting can really get behind!

And of course, I loved seeing all my designer buddies again.  The show is never long enough to really catch up the way I’d like.  And thanks to all those wonderful designers who taught the Monday education classes, I’m excited about taking a new fork in the road!

That’s it for now,

Until next time…

August 3, 2010 at 2:32 pm Leave a comment

Sizzix ScoreBoards Blog Hop–Rectangle Box

It’s Sizzix ScoreBoards blog hopping time again, this time featuring an adorable rectangle box with a lid!  My friend and ScoreBoards designer Eileen Hull sent me this sweet little box to work with and my brain started racing with possibilities.

The box measures 3 3/8″ x 1 3/4″ x 1 7/8″ when it is assembled, which makes it a great size for all sorts of things.  While I could have filled it with candies or other treats as a favor box, or kept it for the doodads that collect on my dresser (I was tempted!), I decided it would become an extra-special gift box for the earrings I made for a friend’s birthday.

I wanted to give the box a metallic look with a little bit of texture, so I used Watermark ink, a stamping wheel and clear embossing powder from Clearsnap to emboss a circle design onto the box.   After heat setting, I used a paintbrush to rub in Antique Silver Pearl-Ex powder and give the metallic sheen.  What I failed to consider, however, is how the metallic would photograph.  Whoops!  It looks fantastic, trust me!   The feet are beads, attached with glue to each corner, and the sentiment is stamped and embossed.

I was super-happy with the dry embossing on the lid that I did using the Sizzix Dots embossing folder and my Big Shot. I’ve never tried dry embossing mat board before, and the results were fantastic.  I love it when that happens!  A quick embellishment cluster of a printed sentiment, a glittered bookplate and leaf, and a Prima flower finished off the top of the box perfectly.  I used a small velcro dot to secure the lid closed.   Voila!  A special gift box for a special friend!

Don’t forget to hop around to the other artists’ blogs to see the other fabulous takes on Eileen’s ScoreBoards design!  If you enjoyed seeing these ScoreBoard projects on the hop, please leave a comment here or on Eileen Hull’s blog so we know you stopped by.   This makes you eligible for a random drawing for a ScoreBoards die!

See more projects here:

Stop by again for our next hop on May 12, we will be making cakes!

Until next time…

April 27, 2010 at 9:40 pm 18 comments


I love downloading photos.

Well, let me rephrase that.  I love looking at the photos I’ve downloaded.  The actual downloading process is, frankly, less than exciting.  And because of that, I don’t do it as often as I should.  Coupled with the fact that I most often use 4gig cards, it may be several weeks before I fill up a card enough to bother with the download process, and often makes the subject matter a bit of a surprise.   Which in a rather circular manner brings me back to my original thought:

I love downloading photos.  🙂

Today’s long-overdue downloads are brought to you today by my oldest child, who inhereted my old G3.   Nearly nine, he loves snapping photos almost as much as I do, and I love looking at the world through his eyes.  In this case, his eyes were taking in this summer’s Disney vacation.

There were a few shots remarkably similar to ones I had taken


and some that were close, but taken from kid-height:


There were some that were better than the ones I took with my DSLR:


and some that captured moments I missed:



Of course, there were multitudes of photos of his favorite subject:



He took 216 photos over the week we were there.  Yes, several were blurry (he’s an impatient boy and it’s a slow camera), and some are unflattering, to say the least.   But he had some great shots and, most importantly, a record of our vacation through his eyes.  From his perspective.

Until next time…

September 8, 2009 at 1:38 pm 1 comment

Creating frenzy

I mentioned last week that I was on a massive creative streak, spending night after night in the craft cave pulling my Designer Showcase table display together.  After late nights and buckets of caffienated beverages I’m almost there.   Two more projects left.  Sleep is overrated, right?   The creative binge is fun, but the aftermath leaves a little to be desired.

Here’s one of the late-night projects made for Helmar Adhesives:


I finally got my gallery up and running this weekend.   To see more projects, click on the “Gallery” tab up top.

In other news, while preparing for our upcoming adventures, I made sure all the memory cards from our cameras are empty and ready to go.  In the process, I found quite a few photos I had forgotten about.  Here’s a little gem from our recent NASCAR race at the Kentucky Speedway.  Kid #1 was super-excited about being able to stay up late and go along.   He was fun to watch.


I’m still lamenting the lack of photos from the NKOTB concert last weekend.   We got a random upgrade to pavilion seats.  Total retro cheesy fun.  Completely different from *coughcoughtoomanyyearsagocoughcough* when I was 13 seeing them the first time.  It was a ball.

Off to head back to the cave.  Those projects aren’t going to make themselves!

Until next time…

July 6, 2009 at 10:22 am 1 comment

Wait…what? July?

I turned the calendar page to July yesterday.

Usually, I enjoy turning the calendar.  A fresh new page of possibilities before the commitments get scribbled all over.  But today I’m wondering where the summer has gone.  I’d swear the last day of school was just yesterday, and here it is almost mid-summer already.   Between chasing the kids and craft assignments, it has been a busy month already.

The CHA summer show in Orlando is just a few short weeks away, and I’m waist-high in preperations.  My friend Niki is visiting from North Carolina, and we’ve been crafting fiends over the last week.   Because of some other prior commitments, I have to have everything ready for the show by next week.   My usual pre-show panic has set in early, and I’m scrambling to make sure everything is in order.  It doesn’t matter how early I start prepping for shows, I always end up finishing 5 minutes before my deadline.   Luckily, my deadline is earlier this year.   I’m imagining the night before the show to be relaxed and calm.  I won’t know what to do with myself!

I wanted to share a project I did a few months ago that became a product header.  The layout features “Smooch”, an accent ink from Clearsnap.  I love that ink, the brush lets me color even the tiniest spaces.


I’ll be sharing some more of the work I’ve been creating for the show as I photograph it this week.

Until next time…

July 2, 2009 at 10:12 am Leave a comment

The bear hunt proves fruitless


Each fall we try to carve a few days from the crazy family schedule to spend in the Smokies with the in-laws.  Each fall we hope to catch a glimpse of a bear.    And each fall we leave without a bear sighting.   It has come to be quite the joke in the family, since everyone who has ever come along on this trip has managed to spot one except us.  This year, my sister-in-law managed to catch a cub (a peek, not the actual bear!) near Laurel Falls.

We, on the other hand, were treated to views of that rare woodland creature known as the ground squirrel.   Fascinating!

Oh well!    Next time it has to be us.    We’re the only ones left!

With the kids in school is gets harder and harder to get a few days away, so we ended up with a long weekend trip this year.    It wasn’t a long time to take in the sights, so we had to chose a few specific spots to see.   In the end, we stuck with some old favorites – a few kid-friendly trails, the Dixie Stampede, and driving the Cades Cove loop with a few thousand of our closest friends.    Despite the Cove being packed (though not nearly as bad this year as some previous years), the kids always love exploring the cabins.    They also had a great blacksmithing demo we hadn’t seen before.    The light inside the cabin was fantastic.   I’m hoping I got some good photos, but I haven’t downloaded them from the camera yet.

I did realize that I’m still not over the near-squishing of my car by a semi-truck a few months ago, though.   The highway driving made me shaky.    Worth it though, to have a great family weekend, bears or no bears!

Until next time…

October 27, 2008 at 3:26 pm Leave a comment

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Material disclosure: As an independent craft designer, I often receive product at reduced or no cost for use in my work. A list of companies with whom I have current or past relationships is listed on my "About Me" page. I am not compensated monetarily for posting about any products mentioned on this blog. Please feel free to contact me with any questions pertaining to my relationship with manufacturers or products used in posted projects.