October’s Magic Mirror

oct-16-mirror1

My mirror room decorating project for October was easy and simple.  I mostly let the designer series paper that I hoard  frugally keep on hand for the perfect project do all the work for me.

oct-16-mirror2

A mix of previous year’s papers, a little punch activity, and a few little plastic spiders scattered here and there and I was done in no time.


oct-16-mirror3Here’s what I used (all Stampin’ Up!, unless noted):

  • Paper: Witches’ Brew and Cast A Spell DSP (retired); Whisper White Card Stock
  • Stamps: Wicked Cool digital stamp set from the long-since retired (but I still use it regularly) My Digital Studio.
  • Tools: Triple Corner Punch (retired); Flower Medallion Punch
  • Other: My mirror that I’m recovering each month, and some plastic spiders from the halloween section at my local retail discount store.

I’ve got a zillion of those lil plastic critters and have had a lot of fun using them this season.  I am, however, just hoping they don’t work their way loose from any of the projects I’ve made with them and end up scaring me to death when I find them in an unexpected place….the blood-curdling scream you hear if I do may be mine!


–Thanks for visiting my Little Corner today!

Advertisements

Pinktober 2016 Wreath

ar-pink-wreath3

Back in June, I had the pleasure of creating party decor for the 90th birthday of a close friend’s mom. My friend wanted understated elegance ar-table-decor-2and not too expensive; her mom loved pinks and girly; and “bling” was essential for all.  So we ended up with simple white fabric cloths topped with equally simple, but stunning, vases filled with lush pink silk blossoms.  The original table arrangements are pictured here on the right.  We were all very pleased with the results and the sweet birthday girl had a wonderful party filled with friends, family, good food and fun, and much-deserved joy.

As it turned out, the 90th would be our birthday girl’s final one; sweet Annie Ruth passed peacefully in her sleep about a month after her big day. No matter the age of our moms, when they leave us, it’s always too early, always heartbreaking, and always leaves us with a gaping hole in our lives. We’d barely had time to put away the leftover trappings from a festive birthday party before my friend was planning a funeral.  No words can convey how hard this was, of course.

I wanted to do something for my friend as she grieved, as a reminder to her of the wonderful gift she’d given her mom–a token from the party that had been such a highlight of sweet AR’s last days.  So I took apart all those lovely pink blossoms from the birthday table flowers, disassembled all the lengths of pearl garland used, and determined to be creative with a dual purpose: as my friend is a breast cancer survivor, a new combination Pinktober observance and birthday-party-souvenir wreath would be born. And it would be very girly in honor of both of the ladies I adore: one is a friend (for literal decades now!) that I’m grateful is a 4-year breast cancer survivor; the other, her sweet now-sadly-gone mom whom I have learned to love with all my heart, too.  So, an AR Pinktober special it is:

ar-pink-wreath

I can’t help but look at this and think how much my own mom–who wasn’t so fortunate ar-pink-wreath2in her breast cancer battle (now 26 years ago)–would also love this creation. As my mom celebrates yet another October birthday in Heaven, this year, I’d like to think that Cissy and Annie Ruth are looking down on their girls (and all their progeny) with smiles and love … and forgiving me once again for my inability to type this without shedding a bunch of tears.

Happy Pinktober; hug your moms close. And remember that October is Breast Cancer Awareness month–and it IS a big deal.


–Thanks for visiting my Little Corner today!

A country fair and fundraising

praters-7

Every year, a friend and I craft our hearts making various items for various crafts shows in our area….all in an effort to do some fundraising for our American Cancer Society’s Relay for Life Team, which we’ve dubbed “Friends for Life”.  The Team name is a play on both the concept of Relay for Life, and the fact that we–and most of our team mates have BEEN friends for most of our lives.

This year’s crafts fair is the biggest one we’ve tried, and we had a good bit of success with our first effort there.  We had a lot of interest, a reasonable amount of sales, and I had the joy of sharing the fact that Relay for Life offers cancer-survivor activities at the yearly event with a few folks who weren’t aware of them. As a cancer survivor myself, being able to connect with others who have their own “battle-stories” and letting them know about how Relay works–it’s a very good thing.

To find out more about the American Cancer Society, go here.  You’ll find links with tons of information for you or a loved one dealing with cancer. And for more information on Relay for Life, our Team’s facebook page is here. We’ve already had our 2016 event and are gearing up for 2017–always looking forward. Getting involved with a Relay in your area is a way to celebrate life, remember and honor our loved ones with cancer, and to help fight back against this awful disease.praters-5


-Thanks for visiting my Little Corner today!

Autumn Angels

abaca-angels2

Some of this Fall’s craftiness has been very “retro” for me.  I can remember working with abaca literally decades ago.  If I search long enough, I’ll probably unearth a photo with the abaca butterflies I embellished with some ribbon and hung on my bedroom wall many, many moons ago.  And long-ago-me also crafted with pretty much the exact type of abaca items featured here today.

abaca-angels4

These abaca angels are part of the items included in this year’s crafts fair booth (in my Relay for Life fundraising efforts).  abaca-angels3These heavenly creatures have been adorned with various silk leaves and coordinating ribbons, and are now all decked out in their Autumn splendor. Each is unique, and I enjoyed designing their tiny “garments” and matching the ribbons to their leafy “skirts”.  Each Autumn Abaca Angel may be used as an ornament or will stand upright, as displayed here.  I personally envision them in a grouping of 1 taller angel, flanked by two smaller ones as a table centerpiece.

autumn-blessings-poem

 

 

The angels’ prayerful stance inspired me to write a poem that I printed out and then crafted a tabletop art piece from, to display along with the angels.  I distressed the poem panel, mounted it onto a perfect shade of orange piece of cardstock, and then mounted all that onto a burlap frame, adorned with more silk leaves, some more ribbon, and a couple of acorns. I also printed a much smaller version of the poem and included it on a hang tag with each angel.

The poem reads thusly:

Autumn Blessings

Lord, thank You for the falling leaves,Glorious colors, And a cooler breeze.

Please bless our home, and loved ones, too.  Our Autumn Blessings are falling from You.


–Thanks for visiting my Little Corner today!

March’s Mirror-Reflecting Joy

March Mirror 1

The subject for March’s “monthly mirror project”–wherein I’m creating a new decorative insert appropriate to each month–was easily chosen, since Easter falls March Mirror 6in March this year.  I also wanted to continue for a bit longer with the beautiful paper that I’d used last month (see it here).  So, since I’d attached February’s focal point very simply, because I’m lazy brilliant and believe in recycling, it was removed easily.  I will now forward this heart banner to my niece to use in her room for awhile–her favorite color is blue, too.

March Mirror 5

So, March’s project was put together with a lot more of the blues from the dsp (and a tad of the pink), one of my favorite Easter stamps (sadly retired), some minimal embellishments, and a lush bow from (the also sadly retired) most gorgeous ribbon SU ever created.  This project was a joy to make and feels like a genuine gift for my room, especially as I contemplate the great joy and indescribable Gift of which it testifies.


Here’s what I used (all Stampin’ Up!):

  • Stamps: Indescribable Gift; Flower Shop; Petite Petals
  • Ink: Watermelon Wonder, Mint Macaron, Pool Party, Mossy Meadow; Memento Tuxedo Black
  • Paper: Birthday Bouquet DSP; Blushing Bride, Mint Macaron, Pool Party, and Whisper White Card Stocks
  • Embellishments:  Antique Brads (retired); Pearl Basics Jewels; Pool Party Seam Binding Ribbon
  • Tools: Pansy and Petite Petals Punches

–Thanks for visiting my Little Corner today–and Happy Easter!

Feb 2016 Magic Mirror Love

Feb 16 Mirror Love 10Feb 16 Mirror Love 4

 

 

Last year I started what I’d intended to be a monthly thing wherein I’d decorate a mirror for display with some kind of month-specific “stuff”. I got January’s done (here), and then life intervened (as it often does in my little corner of the world) and I had to set the idea aside for awhile. Now that I’ve finally gotten (mostly) settled in from my recent move, I’m ready to pick up again with some craftiness for my mirror, mirror on the wall.  And, of course, February called for a little love.

It just so happened the January My Paper Pumpkin provided the perfect starting point for this endeavor.  Feb 16 Mirror Love 1

Among all the finery included in this month’s kit, I found hearts and banners that literally just popped out of the pages, a perfect color palette, and the stamps and embellishments that acted as the kickstart for the other items I decided to add in.

I’m absolutely in love with the paper in this year’s SU Occasions catalog, so discovering that one of my most favorite pages
was the perfect coordination was a big bonus. (Of course, that meant I had to actually CUT that paper…. which took a minute or two to get up the nerve to actually DO….but now I get to look at this lovely paper, and my mirror gets to look at the backside of it instead of ME, so we’re all happy here.)

I pulled out my “January insert” that I’d popped back in from last year’s efforts (still worked very nicely this year), and used that as my sizing guide for making my cut.
(Heck, this paper is so beautiful, I’d have been happy with JUST it in the mirror….)

But I made a rose for my center heart piece from one of the PP hearts using the spiral cut

from a circle method, and then punched some more blossoms out of a couple others to make some lovely daisy-ish flowers on the other two.  And I stamped a bunch, inked a bunch more, and–as always–threw in some gorgeous ribbon. (I LOVE this satiny-fabulous stuff!)

Feb 16 Mirror Love 10

My finished frame will adorn and brighten my room for an extra day this Leap Year, and then I hope to come up with some March madness magic to change it out again.


Here’s what I used for this project (all Stampin’ Up!):

  • Stamps: Awesomely Artistic; January My Paper Pumpkin set; Perfect Pennants; Timeless Textures
  • Paper: items (striped and solid hearts and banners) from the January MPP kit; Birthday Bouquet DSP; Metallic Foil Doilies
  • Ink: Smoky Slate, Blushing Bride, Watermelon Wonder, Mint Macaron, Memento Tuxedo Black
  • Tools: Blossom Bunch Punch
  • Embellishments: Twine and Clothespins from January MPP; Watermelon Wonder 1″ Stitched Satin Ribbon; Pearl Basic Jewels

–Thanks for visiting my Little Corner today!

Christmas Decorating 2015

Christmas Decorating 2015-2

I sometimes don’t know whether to thank my Mom–or bemoan my fate–whenever Christmas decorating time rolls around.  Mom taught me to truly celebrate events (something wonderful, of course)….but from her I also got my obsession with decorating every nook and cranny of every place I’ve ever lived (not always a good thing!–case in point: the poor little gingerbread-guy silicone potholder who got hung in my window next to the stove….he smiled the whole time, but I think he was horribly uncomfortable there!).

Luckily, 2015’s abode is small-scale, so I actually could just about decorate every inch of it with all the Christmas decorations I’ve hoarded collected through the years. (I won’t mention how many bins of UNused decorations I didn’t even have room for!)  I also got to play with some interesting and a bit different color schemes this time.Christmas Decorating 2015-6

My Christmas tree (featured in more detail here) was unique, showcasing my first-floor color choices of turquoise, bright “Grinch”-green, and a bright purple.  My living room and craft space here have been done in blues and aquas the rest of the year, so it was easy to switch out to happy holiday mode with these particular colors.Christmas Decorating 2015-3-1

 

Upstairs, I went with an equally non-traditional black and white, with some pops of red. My black and white wreath set the tone for a cool, almost icy seasonal feel, and opened into my bedroom, where I’ve happily featured favorite old photos and original artwork by a local artist, along with items that are particularly meaningful to me this time of year, choosing things that fill my heart with joy –reminding me of cherished loved ones and times gone by.

Outside decorations were truly minimal this time, but here I kept the colors traditional (to better suit the house itself) and the style warm and inviting with a welcoming wreath and lots of happy red.Christmas Decorating 2015

The only snowflakes we saw in my neck of the woods this time were in my windows–it was one of the warmest Decembers on record here! Better luck next year for a white Christmas, I guess.  2015 was decidedly more colorful!


–Thanks for visiting my Little Corner today!

Christmas Trees for Relay

Christmas Cone Trees 2015-10

My Relay for Life team captain and I sat in on another fundraiser at a local crafts fair again this year. Along with a few Christmas ornaments, we filled our table with tabletop Christmas trees this time.

These papier-mache-based “cone” trees got their start in last year’s inspiration (see post here), and then we just went a bit wild with color, paper, buttons, punches, and lots and lots of ribbon.  I think I tied about 30,000 bows again, and we likely went through a million yards of various ribbon in this process (just a slight exaggeration, though it doesn’t really seem like much of one!).

As in the past, we donated the materials and our time and all money made went to our upcoming Relay Team efforts, which in this case will go toward the 2016 event.

I think we had a gorgeous selection and it’s always good to get crafty knowing it’s also for a good cause.


–Thanks for visiting my Little Corner today!

 

Spooktacular Shadowbox for Retro Rubber #25

20151014_183137

It’s been awhile since I had the opportunity to play along, but I LOVE the Retro Rubber Challenge blog. The spooky Halloween challenge this time was the perfect opportunity to join in, since I’ve been creating a good bit lately…and all my Halloween stamps ARE very retro!RRC#25

So, for Retro Rubber’s #25 “Get Your Spook On”, I did just that–got Retro AND coined a new term for myself: “pro-craft-inator” (sorry if you’ve already seen the term elsewhere, but I’m laying claim to it here).  No, I don’t mean I’m a professional ninja crafter (a la Terminator style!).  I mean I have a habit of procrastinating on certain crafts projects. Not intentionally, but it happens often. The list of projects I’ve been “going to do” is pretty long. But I finally checked one off my list!. I’ve been wanting to make a Halloween shadow box for years now (ever since SU sold a kit of one three years ago!–where does time go??), and I finally found the shadowbox I wanted on sale at my local HL.  20151014_183137-3I used my really retro stamps from some old SU spooky sets, and the great NEW SU halloween paper–I consider this paper to be “elegantly spooky” and managed to use almost every single design in my project. I don’t know if I should call ghosts and ravens “yummy”, but I DO think this is delicious DSP! And with the addition of one of the Spider Web Doilies, I’ve got a touch of old AND new in my happily-creepy room décor.  I’m happy with the results and using it for the one spooky Halloween goody in my otherwise autumn-themed-only living room decor.


Here’s what I used for my project:

  • Stamps (all retired): Wicked Cool, Dark and Dreary, House of Haunts
  • Paper:  Happy Haunting DSP
  • Ink: Memento Black, some old yellow, orange, and green (VERY retro) SU inks to color my haunted house background, and some printed images from the old MDS program. I save everything (and then pro-craftinatingly finally use it at some point!)
  • Accessories, etc: Spider Web Doilies, and a shadowbox from local crafts store20151014_183137-3

That’s it–very easy peasy!  Now, to get back to work on other fall goodies and projects!

–Thanks for visiting my Little Corner today!

Festive Fall Wreaths

20150923_192151-3

Autumn provides my “warmest”—and one of my happiest—decorating opportunities.  Normally one who leans toward either crisp black-and-white…or to the other extreme of subtle vintage-y pastels…I love the Fall color palette possibilities. I get to play with rich browns, golden yellows and bronzes, and the yummy clarets and oranges I usually run from the rest of the year.

This is the time of year for textures, too:  rough woven burlap; scratchy grapevines; the softness of some feather plumes; the natural beauty of freshly fallen leaves, nubby acorns, and prickly pinecones. And a wreath made with one or more of those items, and with some traditional fall icons worked in—that makes my heart sing with memories of wonderful family gatherings in times past…and look forward to what this new season will bring.

20151013_191841

This year’s wreath creations are four: one larger grapevine traditional round on my entry door and three smaller square-shaped ones adorning my front windows.  The three littler guys are simply adorned with some ribbon and a focal point of either a girl or boy scarecrow or this adorable little squirrel “pick” I found at my local crafts store.

The larger wreath has quite a bit more going on—with some silk foliage and three different ribbons, both wrapped and bowed to finish it off.

This lovely grouping greets me every evening after work and has me both smiling and entertaining thoughts of pumpkin pie and hot applie cider. Yum!

–Thanks for visiting my Little Corner today!