#436

As an example of art imitating life, here is a picture of my ribbon box from a few days ago. I love ribbon, but it’s always hard to find the right one when your organisation system is simulating the nearest landfill. I saw an idea online for a storage solution, which I adapted to my own situation, and have been sorting out my ribbon collection. Unfortunately, my past attempts at sorting this pile included pins. This lead to a few puncture wounds from diving into the box, in search for that one ribbon at the bottom, that would be perfect for a project. Enter:the cardboard.

Now, I’ve tried cardboard before, in the form of embroidery thread holders, and disliked the results, as it made fold lines in the ribbon. I have now decided this would be preferable to a stabby, messy pile of unraveling threads. Making it both easier to see, and safer. As you can see in the image, I used a hexagon punch to cut half shapes out of the sides of a piece of card stock. I doubled over the card for added stability, and wound the ribbons, securing each with a paperclip. I originally tried miniature pegs, as they were cute and the right size, but they kept falling off as I wound the following ribbon, and I gave up on it. Paper clips are also cheaper and easier to get at the local shop when I figure out I have much more ribbon than I thought.


The process is taking some time, but is working out nicely so far. I still have a whole bag of elastic, lace and ribbons still on their spools, too long to fit on the cards, or are unopened, to sort and find a storage solution. I have a bag of ribbons too short to bother putting on the cards. These will be good for making tiny bows, or if I want to buy more of something as a swatch.

Looking at my ribbon collection has made me see all the pretty ribbons that I have… But also makes me feel like buying more :/

It takes all SORTS…

#260

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It’s a heart.. No really.
Well it started as one. It was only a test, so I wasn’t trying hard to keep the shape. I only used the branch punch and two colours of paper. By only gluing the stem down, it left bits to stick out and looks nicer. It think it looks rather autumny, which is fitting. It will be fun to  find colour combinations that look realistic or maybe make a full size wreath with heaps of layers.

#252

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I went into the city to have lunch with my partner and go to the craft shops. I set aside two hours to shop, but I ran out of money in half an hour. I bought green and black fabric for the beanbag chair and also a zip for it.
I’d seen a few cards lately using a branch punch, so I wanted to see what I could do with one. Apart from wreaths and foliage behind flowers, it could be used for reindeer antlers, distant large trees… Or close up small trees. I was going to get the large one, which cost almost double, but this one is quite a nice size still (2.5cm/1 inch high.) If I need a larger amount of branches, I can just add more pieces.
I’m the kind of person who is rather clumsy, especially with food and always gets stains on my shirts. One of these shirts is a lovely white batman shirt with a lovely chocolate stain on Batman’s face. In an effort to cover this stain, I thought I could add a little artistic flair and add some yellow fabric marker to lessen the noticeability of the stain. I had a packet of sharpie fabric markers, but I didn’t have any yellows, which would suit not only this shirt, but a Transformers Bumblebee shirt that I’d like to add some colour to.
The only problem with buying this stuff today is, when I got home, I found out we have yet another inspection (a month early. :/) So my plans of completing my craft room properly, along with any other plans will be put on hold, and rushed to be tidy.
I don’t think they’ll believe we have two junk rooms…

#246

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I was browsing the internet, adding to my wish list of craft supplies, when I was thinking how awesome stamps with matching punches are. Due to lack of availability, cost and the fact I like making things, I decided I could do this myself. I’ve been wanting to carve some stamps and I definitely need to practice more, but I like the rough style that came out of it.
I began by punching the shape I wanted, from card, and traced it onto the carving rubber. I then cut the shape out using a blade, and began carving away. The grooves don’t need to be too deep, just check if it needs to be deeper by inking it on an ink pad. Anywhere the colour touches will likely stamp onto the paper, so cut these unwanted parts off. White erasers can be used to do this, but I find the rubber from the art store carves much easier and cleaner, and it’s cheap.
The only thing to be wary of is make sure you carve within the line that you traced, as it will be slightly larger than the punch itself, and it won’t match well. Don’t forget you can make negative and positive patterns, have multiple stamps matching each punch and die, or even have two step stamping.

#225

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Today I had the thought to punch or die cut shapes out of white card, then colour them in with copics. I know this isn’t the thought of the century, and everyone must come to realise it on their own, in their lifetime, but now was my time. I thought about colouring he paper before punching, but this way you can put colours specific to the shape, like shading. Also this doesn’t leave the chance of the white core of the paper showing. You could always make it one colour and use it to match coloured images on a card or something. I think I’ve seen people do that, on YouTube, but they didn’t do much blending which was more what I was focussing on here. The colours that I put on the butterfly reminds me of a rainbow ice cream that I love. Now I need ice cream.
I spent a part of today looking up craft room inspiration, as I’m going to buy a nice couple of cube storage shelving units. I drew up a diagram of what to put in each square, and where to put the fabric drawers so I could figure out how many I’d need. Because of my bad health, I need to plan everything out exactly, because I won’t have the energy or strength to change my mind or play around with furniture in the midst of cleaning. I’m hoping there’ll be enough storage. I’ll likely use some large containers for boxes, construction, wool and maybe fabric. I’m excited to the room to be finished. But its going to take a lot of time and effort, but hopefully I can earn the right to use an awesome room, by making it an awesome room.
My craft room is meant to be my sanctuary, but at the moment, I can barely get in there.

#190

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I made this card the other day for my partner. Our nine year anniversary, so there’s nine hearts on the front. I actually punched out all the hexagons from black card and used foam adhesive for the middle section, and stuck the edge ones on flat. My partners favourite colour at the moment is green, and I felt as though it would look nice with the pink. Lucky he likes pink, or this wouldn’t have worked as a manly card. You may think that a biohazard symbol is weird for an anniversary card, but it is the logo for the gaming site we built together. I created it by punching circles of different sizes. Firstly punching the smaller circle, then the larger circle off centre, making moon shapes and gluing them to a base made the same way, but centring both circles to make a ring.
I didn’t measure the card for the sentiment, so I had to tilt the words slightly, as the first letter going up didn’t fit with the last letter hanging down.
The first question he asked me was how long did it take to make. I replied, not as long as you’d think. Once I’d thought out the design while trying to sleep one night, I had figured out most of it. The hexagons punching and placing probably took the longest, and playing around to make the biohazard symbol.

Day #166

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Mini shopping spree. Took more time travelling than shopping, but I wanted sushi from a particular place.
So I got another sticker alphabet. These seem to have formed a collection in my stash, because I never had the right one for the job, and they are so useful. This one is very small, and is nice and bold. The good thing is the smaller the letters, the more you get on a sheet for the same price :P.
I originally set out to buy a cleaning brush for my new sewing machine, because it didn’t come with one. I couldn’t find any, but I bought a box to put all my needles, bobbins and anything that goes with the machine.
In the remnants bin, I found a metre of denim that would be great for bags or cat toys. It was only on the way home that I remembered that I’d need a different needle in my machine to use it. By the time I get to washing the fabric, I’ll probably have bought some.
While thinking up designs for a bag, a couple have drawstrings, so when I saw the eyelet setter, I thought I might as well try it out. No harm of having it on hand, as it’s a useful tool.
I got a small leaf punch, which is the perfect size and shape to pair with the paper roses that I make sometimes.
Lastly, I got a vanishing fabric marker. While I was watching YouTube videos about sewing, I was shocked that they were using pen on the light coloured fabrics. It wasn’t until today, in the shop, that I read the pen disappears after 48 hours or so. I wonder if the ink ever disappears while in the pen. Maybe that’s why it says to keep out of the heat.
I’ve been watching videos about thrift store fashion transformations. One girl in particular, Coolirpa, is very talented. The only problem is that all the videos seem to show how to make clothes smaller to get them to fit. I need one that enlarges them. There’d be a huge audience for that (pun kind of intended.)

Day #92

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Busy in the craft room today 😀

I set my laptop up to play videos under “how to make your own craft supplies” on YouTube, and kept the creativity flowing. I brought a few new craft supplies lately, including a balloon punch, a large butterfly punch, and some stamps, so I had to have a play today.

I meant to sort out some things, after watching a craft organisation video, but when I go to the room, I needed to create.

When I brought the balloon punch, I thought it might be good for birthday cards, and it almost looked like a fish when sideways, so I made a fish with it. The idea of using it to recreate the “Up” scene hit me suddenly, and I had to see it through. I haven’t added any balloon strings yet, as I am unsure on how to do it without overloading the look with a hundred lines. I may leave it as a minimal piece. My Dad would like this, but his birthday isn’t for months.

Many of the videos today were about making your own enamel dots, or something called flairs, which are like domed images for card making and scrapbooking. Last year I picked up some clear domed sticker for that exact use, and I also had the clear vase pebbles that I played around with.

So, between refereeing kittens and crafting, it was a fairly fun day 😀

Day #88

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Finally got myself a hexagon punch! Yaay! Honeycomb for all. I was playing around with it, having some fun. There are loads of possibilities for this punch. It’s going to be fun finding them all.
So, as I said in another post, I like to buy a few things with a lot of uses. The way I would do this is investigating. Sure I buy things on a whim, maybe when they are cheap or seam like a good idea, but when I plan, I tend to not only save money, but increase creativity.
So, what am I talking about? Say you buy a die cutting shape for a project. You get a shoe themed die. You may have one or two friends that like shoes, and it’s not very suitable for many occasions like Christmas. Once you’ve made a card for those friend with this die, unless you want to sell cards, you may not use that die again. Alternatively, you could buy a small amount of diecut shapes online or friends that may have it. Or think creatively and cut out your own.
Flowers, swirls, circles, basic shapes and leaves are versatile, as a lot of the time you can modify them to change the look, and any amount of rearranging can be done to change the feel of the card. Flowers and butterflies will fit almost any occasion from sympathy to birthdays, weddings and Christmas. Just change the paper and colours. Shapes such as squares and hexagons can be used to make geometric backgrounds and suit male orientated cards. Flourishes and swirls can be cut or added to for endless embellishment options. Try and figure out reusability, modification options and whether its worth the money you are paying for it.
Just be creative with the basics. Like lego, using the simplest building blocks, your imagination can build anything. It isn’t the amount of tools you have, it’s your skills that make the work amazing.