Wednesday, August 31, 2011

An Oldy but Goody

If you've been crafting awhile you probably have made these coasters. They are 4" square marble tiles. Staz On ink works best on nonporous surfaces including tile, glass, and acrylic. I colored the flowers with my Stampin up pastels and blender pen. Then I sprayed 4 coats of acrylic sealer. It does take a couple of hours to apply the coats of sealer and let it dry. I glue felt to the back. I have never used anything other than the pastels (chalk)  to color the images. I know that Copic Markers are not recommended to use with Staz On ink. I guess I will need to experiment!

 When I first made the coasters, I gave them to everyone. A couple of years ago I wanted to make something for some coworkers and I remembered the coasters. For some reason I had not made them for this one friend, so the set of coasters will be part of her birthday present!

Sunday, August 28, 2011

Finding time to Craft

I'm trying to change one limiting thought - I don't have time to craft during the week. If that holds true, the weekend is the only time to craft. I know I'm not the only one who uses the weekend to clean the house, do laundry, and get ready for the next week. Then, I'm too tired to craft. The big thing is I feel so much better when I craft, or even just spend time in my craft space. I am able to get lost in what I'm doing. I'm sure the people around me might benefit from my better mood. But it's really not about others. It's about taking time for yourself to do something that makes you happy. I'm sure the tips I'm going to offer are not new. I believe it's all about timing, when we receive the information can be almost as important as the information itself.

Timers are your friend

I set the timer when I pick up in the evening during the week. Fifteen minutes a day makes a huge difference. I also set the timer when I craft. Pick the amount of time that works for you 15 - 30 minutes is a good place to start. What can you accomplish in 15 to 30 minutes? Plenty!

Stamp images to color
Color an image
Stamp some of your favorite background images
Sort a stack of photos
Plan a scrapbook page
Select embellishments for a page
Put supplies back where they belong
Paint a background for an art journal page
Cut some die cuts
List topics for blog posts
Look at your calendar. What celebrations do you need cards for?

Part 2 of this tip is: have a designated place or container for the in progress projects. It can be a zip lock bag or file folder. It's all about finding a system that works for you to make your life easier.

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Back to Work

After the first few days of school, I remembered I wanted to make a sign about walking in the hall, or turtle speed . I wanted something cute that maybe wouldn't get ripped down. Granted I could of just made something on my computer, but what fun would that be! So I actually used several things I had purchased a while back.

Fringe scissors
Create a Critter Cartridge
Puffy Clouds Die

I like my Cricut but I also like to use dies, especially if it's a stamped image, or in this case printed from the computer. The words on the clouds are the school expectations. I cannot explain why I just had to buy the fringe scissors. I've had them for months and just now used them or grass. I love gadgets and tools. I inked the edges of the cloud. It's a very simple thing that really helps die cuts stand out.  If I were using the  clouds on a card I would  use  foam tape. I thought anything sticking our even a little might be tempting to little hands!

Friday, August 12, 2011

Another Door Closes

One of the first rubber stamp stores I found in my area is closing. The owner has another business she is going to focus on. My local scrapbook store closed in the spring. A store 20 minutes away closed this summer. This economy is hurting my hobby and some very nice people. The latest store is one of those places where you feel happy when you enter. I happened to find the store when I read an article about their first anniversary. My friend and I went to the demonstrations that day. That trip started our field trips (regular craft shopping trips). I've also taken classes there. I understand that some items are cheaper online. Someone greeting you by name, and the service you get from a local store can't be replaced by an online store. I realize I need to spend more money at the few remaining local stores that are left, and less at the big box stores. I know the 40% coupons are so enticing!

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Time to stock up

This is the time of year school supplies are on sale. For paper crafters two things I like to have on hand are glue sticks and composition books. Many brands of  glues sticks are acid free. Sometimes I am in a hurry and somehow manage not put the cap back on the glue. I've learned it's better to buy the small ones and have several on hand. Composition books are great to cover for a quick gift. Sometimes you can find the mini composition books that are also great to cover.

A couple of other items that you might find useful are pencil grips and a label maker. I have a friend with arthritis and she puts pencil grips on her colored pencils. I use my label maker everywhere! Organization makes crafting easier. Containers of all sizes are often on sale too! Let's face it you can alter almost any item to make it personal including - but not limited to  pens, pencils and  Post-it notes.

If you're planning on buying any big items. Check to see if your state or a nearby state has a tax free weekend. The more money you save the more money you have to spend on craft supplies!!!