Continuing from where we left off in the previous post, we did some more work on the Craft Room Re-do.
We added a piece of plywood across the top of the two cabinets, which we planned for the TV and VCR/DVD player to sit on, and nailed up some primed, sanded and painted molding to cover the raw edges. Skip put together a brace made of some strips of plywood, nailed it to the back of the plywood shelf, and fastened the structure to the wall stud.
We’ll have to make sure the electronics line up with their remote controls, to be accessed from the sofa/bed directly across from it:
And, from the point of view of folks whose eyesight can use a boost, Skip added not one, but two lights under the shelf for the workspace:
It looks very utilitarian–and it is! The cabinets are roomy and can be closed and locked, making all those sharp blades, tiny objects, and fume-y chemicals out of the reach of curious grandkids! And everything on, under, and including the table can be moved somewhere else.
As I’ve mentioned before, certain paper crafting supplies are not cheap!
The market for such items is huge, though. A few companies that sell fancy papers, paints, inks, die-cutters and the like, are in extreme demand among the multitudes of folks who want to DIY their own greeting cards.
At our crafting class the other night, a few of us were talking about the monthly card kits we subscribe to, which run about $30 to $60 per month.
“I subscribed to [so-and-so’s] kit, but I refuse to subscribe to [such-and-such’s] because it’s way too expensive,” said one of our members.
I agreed. I also have a lot of stuff I’ve accumulated from the 3 months I’ve been a subscriber, that I haven’t used much of yet. However, I had been looking at that particular expensive kit, because its current offering has some equipment in it to make pretty gift card holders for Christmas. After a few days of mulling it over, I decided maybe I wanted to buy into just this one-off kit. But, in the few days it took me to get to that realization, the kit sold out! The only option was to buy a 3-month subscription, which was $97, not including shipping costs which would come to another $12 or so. Well, I darn sure wasn’t going to pay that…but then again, it was very unique, and it would only average out to $33 per month or so…I tentatively looked at the 3-month option again, and in just a day’s time, it was sold out too! Unreal!
Meanwhile, the company whose kit I do subscribe to, gives a mystery freebie item away with each order (separate from the kits). Which brings me to this item I received a few months back:
Can you tell by looking at it, what it’s supposed to do/be?
The title of it is “Monstrocity.” And inside the envelope are some metal wafer dies in the shapes you see in the image above.
I threw it in a drawer and stopped thinking about it until recently, when I began to get interested in making cards and stuff for Halloween, reasoning that maybe it could fit into the Halloween festivities somehow. So I went to the company’s web site and tried to find a stamp set that coordinated with the dies. No luck. It was not even listed anywhere on the site. I tried Googling it, and I did find a few images someone made using the stamp set back in 2015. On eBay, I found one used stamp set that fits these dies, and it was for sale for about $35, not including shipping and handling. So the freebie is pretty much unusable–destined for the Island of Misfit Card-making Paraphernalia— unless I want to buy the stamp off someone who bought it from the company back in 2015. Or, I could die-cut the little monsters out of paper, then draw and color them in while eye-balling a picture of the stamps so I’ll know what they’re supposed to look like? What would you do, dear reader?
In the interim, I did have some fun making Halloween cards.
Welcome to that time of year when we live in suspended activity for just a few days/weeks before the academic year kicks into high gear.
We survived our 5th Annual Family Beach Weekend and the recuperation of it, but we’re technically still “on vacation.”
Still doing cards, and becoming more acquainted with the burgeoning world of card crafters on Youtube and the blogisphere. A few of us in the Wednesday Night Knitting Group are making cards and papercrafts. And even Skip is getting in on it, providing “sentiments” (as the text components of greeting cards are called) of a funny and sometimes better-left-unsaid nature; e.g. “Tanks for all you do” or “I’m flushed with happiness”–with a picture of a toilet, and others….
Here are some recent projects:
This has been one of my favorite projects. I ripped up a few pieces of paper that were ready to go in the trash, and just “painted” them down on large index cards with gel medium, applied with a large paintbrush. First, I brushed on a thin layer to the card surface, and then just began layering strips, brushing more gel medium on top. Some of the paper is ratty, crumpled tissue paper that was balled up in the bottom of a gift bag. The crumpling just adds to the texture. These cards are the backgrounds for a few finished projects:
Then I made a few quick, easy beach cards using some Heidi Swapp laser-cut basswood lettering that was in little packages on the clearance rack at Joann’s, but we have already been experimenting with laser-cutting our own letters and motifs, too. It’s a whole new world of little bitty things to make! The pattern paper beach scenes are cut-outs from the Simon Says Stamp July kit.
For these next projects, I viewed a Bluprint (formerly known as Craftsy Unlimited) video of Shari Carroll (of Simon Says Stamp) teaching a card-making class, and tried my hand at some of her techniques. I seriously doubted I could pull off anything close to the beautiful projects she made out of–let’s face it–trash! But I’m somewhat happy with these…
The focus here is the corrugated cardboard background, which is derived from a box that was in the recycle bin, embellished with other 3D elements, which may or may not also be from the trash. This girl image and the ones below, were little cut-outs I found in a box of my mom’s stuff. I don’t know why she cut out these images and saved them, and I don’t know what she cut them out of in the first place.
Would you believe this bulky card, with its oversized bouquet, does fit into its envelope, although a tight squeeze. ANW/Crestwood made in the USA value pack blank cards and envelopes.
Hope you’re having a great transition time before school, football, cooler weather, and the (yikes!) march toward the holidays.
As a crafter/maker, you know that you must keep on producing…something, whether on a lathe, with hardware, the written word, paint, a sewing machine…something! Right?
We’ve revived the Knitting group once a week, and expanded it to include other crafts as well.
One focus that has come forth in the group is the making of greeting cards, mostly by Tricia and me. She went to a Papercrafting Expo and came back with some great ideas and a resolve to make all her own greeting cards.
Papercrafting is BIG! The amount of tools and materials available for such pursuits is staggering. Several companies sell monthly kits with items that, they advertise, you can make at least 10 cards. With all the scraps and options you probably have around from previous projects, you can probably churn out way more than 10 from a kit (which costs about $40). But when you go to the store to buy cards for an occasion, you’re going to probably spend $5 a piece, or more, if you can’t resist the really ornate ones. And several super You-tube makers vlog about the cards they made from the monthly kit, which can give you so much inspiration and ideas.
Here are a few that I have made in the past couple of months:
I learned how to use the leftover strips of card stock (hating to throw anything cute away) courtesy of Shari Carroll’s “Lovely Layered Cards from Top to Bottom” class on the Craftsy platform.
These were made from 1) plain cards (the pink and blue “borders” in the photo above are the actual pink and blue cards that the decorative papers were glued onto) and envelopes that came in a big package of 80 sets from Michael’s on sale for $5, 2) two 6×6 pieces of card stock that came with the SSS kit, cut down to size so the background paper looks like a border, 3) the sentiments came from a couple of clear stamps and Archival jet black ink, 4) some large sequins I had leftover from my grandmother’s sewing stash, 5) floral butterflies from Hobby Lobby that came in a pkg of 4.
The package of four floral butterflies and the package of 80 sets of cards and envelopes were each the same price; go figure!
Anyway, loads of fun!
Using current technology to create 19th Century crafts