Celebrate every day

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Linda Neff

I think you know how much I enjoy making these little DIY Ornaments. I made several that traveled out to California for CHA and then back home to Michigan. I picked them up last week so was finally able to take some photos of them so I can share them with you all.

You’ll find a tutorial over on the G&P Blog today and I’m gonna give you a quick run-down here as well. On the G&P Blog I show you how I made one using clip art inside and this one here shows how I used some of my vintage button stash. They’re both very different.

For this one, titled ‘Celebrate every day,’ I wanted to leave the bookboard rings their natural color. I did, however, place them in an embossing folder and run them through my Vagabond. I did this for both outer rings. It’s not necessary for the inner ring because only the very edge shows.

I then squeezed on a good amount of Glastique Gloss on both outer rings and both sides of the inner ring and spread it around to give the bookboard rings some shine. It also acts as a sealant and really makes the embossing noticeable.

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DIY Ornament: outer rings embossed and treated with Glastique Gloss.

I cut and rolled several paper flowers with the Sizzix Flowers, 3D die. I had some leaves and a vine leftover from some project so decided to use them all together. I used a small paint brush to apply Glastique to the leaves and flower edges an sprinkled them all with a light dusting of Fawn Microfine Transparent glitter. I set those aside while I figured out what else was going in this globe.

I opted to finger paint some Rose Pink 3D Enamel Gel onto the inside of the back globe. This provides a bit of dimension and texture and is still transparent while making the finished piece look good from the back. When that dried I adhered vintage buttons in a single layer to fill the back globe. Now I could start assembly. I laid the vine, leaves and flowers in until I got an arrangement that appealed to me then I glued them all in place, added the computer printed phrase and let it sit a while to set up.

DIY Ornament: back globe with vintage buttons and 3D paper flowers.
DIY Ornament: back globe with vintage buttons and 3D paper flowers.

When it was pretty stable I added a thin line of Glastique to the unfinished side of the bottom ring and set the globe into it, clipping it together with clothespins while the glue sets up. When it’s pretty much set, run a thin line of Glastique around the lip of the globe and lay the inner ring on it; clip to set up.

DIY Ornament: inner ring glued to top portion of bottom globe.
DIY Ornament: inner ring glued to top portion of bottom globe.

The Glastique dries clear so no need to fret over a little bit oozing out. Now glue the top globe to the inner ring then glue the top embossed ring over that and clip till the glue sets. I like to leave these for a couple hours or overnight just so I’m sure all my glue is perfectly dry before messing with it.

DIY Ornament with all layers together; clipped to hold tightly until glue is set.
DIY Ornament with all layers together; clipped to hold tightly until glue is set.
DIY Ornament with Glastique finish.
DIY Ornament with Glastique finish.

This one went together quite quickly and I added a Tim Holtz Swivel Clasp to the top for hanging. There’s another ornament over on the G&P Blog today from me. If you’d like to try this on your own you can order your DIY Ornaments by clicking the link below. I’ll also have a class or two coming up at Scrapbook Peddler with the DIY Ornaments so watch for that date to be added to the calendar soon. I’ll be at the Scrapbook Peddler next weekend for a Piccolo Card Class.

Lovin’ this little box …

Linda_Neff_mini_mug_shotI love looking at blogs where the artist creates adorable little gift boxes. I think gift boxes are such a lovely and fun way to present a gift to someone – in addition to the gift inside they also get to enjoy or reuse the box it came in!

I’ve never really tried to make too many boxes. I always thought it would be a bit time-consuming. Boy, was I wrong!

I made this little box in under two hours – I think it was more like an hour and a half from start-to-finish.

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I got the idea this morning when I was putting a new bar of soap in my shower. Yardley soap is one of my favorites, I especially love their English Lavender, and when I was flattening the box for the recycle bin it occurred to me that the box is the perfect size for a little gift of candy or a gift card – or both! So instead of adding it to the recycle bin I headed for my room and carefully opened the box on its side seam so I could use it for a template.

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I used a paper from my Ciao Bella Stack from DCWV and traced the soap box onto the backside of the paper (it’s easier to see the pencil lines on the white rather than the pattern paper). Cut the box by cutting on the inside of the pencil line so no pencil lines will remain that might be seen. Use a scoreboard to score lines on your paper in the same places the box has score lines. A bone folder will give you a nice smooth crease.

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I used the cut-out sheet and a coordinating paper from the same pack of Ciao Bella Stack from DCWV. I selected my title for the box and carefully fussy-cut that out, then cut about a two-inch strip of the coordinating paper to use as a wrap on the box. The Fiskars Lacy Doubles Interchangeable Border Punch was perfect to punch the edges on the wrap strip. All the edges – box, title and punched strip – are inked lightly with Vintage Photo Distress Ink.

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I added a strip of Sticky Strips to the outer edges on the punched border strip. These will easily hold Poupon 717 Microfine Transparent Glitter and help to add a bit of glitz to the wrap.

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I used my ‘glitter painting’ technique on the title by squeezing out a dollop of Designer Dries Clear (DDC) onto a palette. I take a fine-tip brush and carefully ‘paint’ the DDC onto parts of the rose on the title cut-out then sprinkle with the appropriated glitter color. I used Juicy Fruit 99 and Just Peachy 162 Ultrafine Transparent glitters along with Poupon 717 Microfine Transparent glitter on the rose to create a variegated look. The leaves are done the same way using Leaf 114 Opaque along with three additional greens from a medallion of glitters. The rim of the ‘Love’ title is ‘painted’ with Tree Bark 524 Microfine Opaque.

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I love the look from adding glitter to die-cuts or stickers for that matter. It really helps dress up a plain-Jane and adds a nice touch of glitz to what, otherwise, might be flat and dull.

While the glittered pieces are setting aside and drying, it’s time to add the glitter to your Sticky Strips. This is so easy! Peel the protective cover from the strip and pour on the Poupon glitter. I always gently rub the glitter into the Sticky Strip before tapping the excess off.

Fold the box and add adhesive to the side to adhere together. I used the Xyron Mega Runner with permanent adhesive. Only the side seam needs to be adhered but I also added adhesive to the bottom flap so it will not open. Fold the box closed then wrap the wrap band around it to see where to crease the band. Remove and score so the band will wrap and lay nicely; secure to box with ends meeting in front (the title is adhered over the ends). I wanted my title to be domed so added three strips of adhesive foam tape to the center areas then used DDC to adhere the title to the box (this creates the dome).

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Fill with some Valentine candies for a cute little gift.

I also decorated some recycled jars for Valentine’s Day gift-giving. Visit the Art Glitter Blog for the tutorial.

A simple ‘Thank You’ is all it takes …

Linda_Neff_mini_mug_shotHave you ever received that little gift during the holidays from a friend or co-worker you weren’t expecting it from? It seems to happen periodically and it can catch us off-guard and unprepared. Years ago I would feel very awkward about accepting it and not giving a gift in return, but as I grow older, I’ve learned over time to graciously accept the gift in the spirit in which it is given, smile and say ‘thank you.’

I do, however, like to acknowledge the receipt of the gift and so I have taken to making holiday-themed ‘Thank You’ and note cards. These are quickly made with leftover papers and embellishments from your Christmas cards, tags and wrappings. You can simply send the pretty hand-made thank you card to the gift-giver or even better, give them a set of note cards in a pretty little gift bag for them to use!

This is a set of four Christmas-themed cards I made using leftover papers from Authentique’s Festive line, my Xyron Mega Runner with permanent adhesive, bookboard accents from Globecraft & Piccolo and some pretty twine from The Twinery.

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As you can see, these are your basic A2 card (4 1/4 inches-by-5 1/2 inches). I basically used coordinating scraps, cut and inked them and stuck it all down on a plain white card made from 110 lb. white cover stock from Staples. I added some borders punched with a Fiskars Border Punch, popped some of the elements up with dimensional foam tape and added a few embellishments.

The Globecraft & Piccolo (G&P) bookboard pieces are left natural and coated lightly with G&P Glastique Gloss to give it that beautiful shiny finish. I love these because they’re thinner than most chipboard elements on the market and will easily go through the mail.

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I like to present them in a hand-made gift bag. The bag is made from a 6-inch by 12-inch strip of cardstock and then just add pretty papers to the front, back and sides. Tie a pretty ribbon for a handle or braid some colored twine from The Twinery. All the papers, including the gift bag, are stuck down with the Xyron Mega Runner using permanent adhesive.

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These make perfect gifts any time of the year. They’re easy enough to make that you could keep several extras on-hand for that last-minute gift for co-workers, teachers, etc. January is also a great time to take the time to sit down and make your Christmas cards for 2013!

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