Simple Cafe Parisian Card

I’ve been busy packing up the house for the upcoming move this Friday, and haven’t had much time for crafting nor blogging. But I wanted to finish a present for a good friend as her birthday falls during my unpacking period and I doubt I can locate most of my craft stuff by then. So after creating her present, I came up with this matching card to jot down my birthday greetings for her.

I was lucky to have won the Cafe Parisian papers previously during the Facebook Monthly challenge, and the beautiful papers made cardmaking a breeze. This quick card was created simply by matting a piece of Postage Patisserie paper on a 4×6 card base created using an orange Patterns & Solids paper.

Then I fussy cut images from the Cherry on Top paper and prop them up on foam pads. In an attempt to soften the background, I added some Tattered Rose Distress Oxide behind the images, but my blending technique is still raw and instead of the light pink I envisioned, the area behind the sentiment looks like a dirty smudge instead! Oh well, it’s the thought that counts, right??

I also created a matching envelope easily using my trusty WRMK Envelope Punch Board, and used the paper scraps to decorate the front. Later I’ll add some cardboard letter stickers to form her name on the envelope and the card will be ready to go!

 

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Mintay Paradise Mini Box

To hold the mini tag album I created earlier, I decided to custom make a box for it. As the papers from Mintay are quite thick, I decided to make the box directly from a sheet of 12×12 PAR-4 instead of using cardstock. I cut the sheet in half to form the top and bottom of the box respectively.

The bottom box measures 5″ x 3.5″ x 1.25″. The top cover was made to be 1/8″ longer than the bottom for both the length and the width. I double-folded the width and the corners so as to ensure a strong box.

The box cover is simply decorated with lots of fussy cut images from the Elements paper. I usually like to keep my outer designs relatively flat, so that it’ll be easier to dust and store. Thus I only used a couple of layers of foam pads. Luckily, with the thick Mintay papers, even with just gluing elements on top of one another, there is some dimension to the project.

It turned out the cover was a bit too loose for the bottom half. So I covered the outside edges of the bottom box with MT tape – this would increase the thickness slightly, reinforce the edges and add some decorative detail.

With the leftover scraps, I added 2 layers of paper strips to each of the inner long edge of the top cover – a wider strip that effectively blended with the other edges, and a thinner strip that narrowed the width sufficiently for the box to close snugly.

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My mini tag album now sleeps snugly in its new home!!

Decorated Traveler’s Notebook Cover

Of the 3 traveler’s notebooks I created from my son’s half-used school exercise books, one was still left plain. I had originally thought of decorating it only when I decide what to use it for, but with the upcoming move, I thought it would be better to decorate it first so that I won’t have another WIP (work-in-progress) added to my pile again.

This time, I decided to decorate the notebook cover with a fussy cut floral cluster from the Garden Cut paper of the Chasing Dreams collection.

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The butterfly fussy cut from the Blissful paper of the Sunny Days collection blends perfectly with the Chasing Dreams papers. I propped it up slightly on foam pads, keeping everything relatively flat so that it’ll be easy to write on both sides of the notebook in future.

To add more layers and interest, I added glitter washi tape and gold foiled stickers. I chose a more neutral sentiment so that the traveler’s notebook can be used for almost any occasion in future.

Decorated Mini Notebooks

Using scraps leftover from making notebooks using my son’s half-used exercise books, I created mini notelets (10.5 cm x 10 cm), again using papers from Maggie Holmes collections to decorate the covers.

As usual, I kept the cover designs relatively flat, so that it’ll be easy to write on both sides.

I added washi tape over the staples over the spine, so that it’ll be smoother and less likely to cut myself when using the notelets.

Glitter washi tape and gold foiled stickers add interest while keeping the design flat. Doodling along the borders create layers without adding bulk.

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Can you believe it, I still have more notelets to decorate!!! I must take care not to buy so many exercise books for the son again this school year!!!

Mintay Paradise Mini Tag Album

It was only a few months ago did my favourite local craft store Papermarket started stocking Mintay papers, and am I hooked!!!! Although every series has only a few paper designs, I love how one sheet would consist of 3×4 cut aparts, while another would be full of design elements to fussy cut. Thus I was able to create a Paradise mini tag album using just 2 sheets of 12×12 papers: MT-PAR-06 and MT-PAR-09.

The papers are thick and sturdy and thus I just used them directly without adding cardstock. I simply cut up the entire sheet of MT-PAR-06 into the individual 12 pieces of 3×4 cards. Each cut apart has a frame on the reverse that would fit a mini photo 5.5 cm x 7.25 cm. So I simply punch a hole in the top left corner to join up all the pieces. Then I fussy cut all the elements from MT-PAR-09 to use as embellishments.

For the album cover, I chose to decoupage the parrot using one of the fussy cut images. Then I added flowers, stamens and enamels from my own stash.

For the binder ring, I added various ribbons & twine in green and blue tones, and added several charms, choosing colours that would complement the cover design.

Some of the designs are rich enough for me, so I just added a couple of fussy cut images and perhaps a wooden sentiment from Kaisercraft Flourishes.

To add more interest to the album, I rounded opposite edges of each tag and edged lightly with Distress Ink.

The holes are reinforced on the reverse side with self-made reinforcement rings – I punched holes in a wasted cut apart and then punched half inch circles over them, created rings to paste over the tags.

I used to be afraid to add on to such richly detailed panels, but I’m learning to overcome my fear of cutting into my pretty papers (having a second copy of every paper helps!) and give the artwork my own spin with embellishments from my stash.

There are several cut aparts designs I did not really like, so I tried to create a new look by layering on more fussy cut images. I did not create too many thick layers as I like my albums to be thinner, for easier storage and ease of adding photos in future.

For two of the cut aparts, I simply used the reverse design and cut out the centre of the frames. One I fussy cut and used foam pads to raise it over another cut apart piece, creating a photo frame effect.

For the other frame, I used it to create a shaker tag by combining with another cut apart. I had originally planned to keep it simple by relying on the background paper design itself, but the glitter kept sticking to the plastic whenever I shake it, obscuring everything, so I added the wooden sentiment right smack in the centre to create a different look.

After creating 9 tags for my mini album, I still had a lot of fussy cut elements left from paper MT-PAR-09. For the smaller pieces, I’m keeping them in a little plastic bag, to embellish the photos once they’re added on the reverse of the tags. I don’t want to add them now, so that I have the flexibility of adding larger, 2R photos in the album.

For the larger pieces of fussy cut elements, I plan to use them to decorate the box I’ll be creating to hold the mini album. Then all it takes would be 3 sheets of 12×12 papers to create a full project!

Decorated Notebook Covers

Just realised I have yet to put up the pictures of the upcycled notebooks I’ve decorated with Maggie Holmes papers. These notebooks were created with my boy’s half-used exercise books earlier in the year, and I’ve been working on decorating the covers on and off for months now. I’ve posted photos about the two I’ve completed earlier, these are the other four of the same size I’ve embellished recently:

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Again, I’ve chosen to keep the designs rather flat, so that they can fit easily in my bags and would be easy to write on.

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Glossy Accents and Nuvo Aqua Shimmer really makes it easy to add dimension without bulking up!

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Glitter washi tape and gold foil stickers also add sparkle to the designs quickly. Paper scraps are great for adding layers.

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I’m now left with mini notelets to decorate. Looks like I have enough notebooks to last me for several years to come!!!

Triangular Exploding Box Card

Last weekend I attended the Paper+65 event at Papermarket and managed to get myself a place in the free Exploding Bak Chang workshop, which was sold out. Bak Chang refers to a pyramidal shaped glutinous rice dumpling we eat during the Dragon Boat Festival, or Duan Wu Jie (端午节) in Mandarin. It’s usually filled with savoury spiced meat or sweet mashed red beans, and the entire dumpling is wrapped in bamboo leaves and boiled.

Papermarket had created a triangular-shaped explosion box card which resembles this iconic foodstuff. The use of Doodlebugs papers and French Kiss ephemera pieces make this a super cute project!

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The outer card base is made out of an equilateral triangle of sides 23.5 cm long, created from the Summer Paradise paper from the Sweet Summer collection. The inner triangle base has sides 17.5 cm long, made of plain cream cardstock to offset the bright pink.

I added fussy cut flowers from the Just Rosey paper provided to reinforce the holes punched at the top of each triangular side, before tying up the box with the ribbon provided.

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Like all explosion box cards, the inside can be decorated in any way you want. I simply used the ephemera pieces provided in the workshop to create different scenes for each facing, propping up some pieces on foam pads.

For the bottom of the card, I thought it would be nice to prop up pieces to fill up the blanks when viewing from different facings, but I’m afraid the result wasn’t as good as what I expected.

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This is by far my favourite: doesn’t the sentiment of Get Out and Go match the flying plane well?? My only grip is that, the length of the die cut is a trifle too long and peeks out of the card when closed. I had to curl both ends of the plane /cloud in order to enclose everything in the bak chang.

 

This is the close up of the other 2 panels. As usual, I couldn’t finish the project within the allocated one hour. The #ta-dah scene was completed at home after another half hour of agonizing over the choice and positioning of the ephemera pieces.

Overall, I find the papers/die cuts provided in the project pack a trifle too pink for my taste, but I’m glad the sentiments provided were neutral enough. The workshop instructor was friendly and helpful – when I lamented about all the pink in the die cuts, she pointed out that the reverse of the Just Rosey paper provided was dark blue and would alleviate the problem. Why didn’t I think of that?! So I traced out one of the die cut hearts on the paper and that’s how I had blue hearts to work with.

I’m really pleased with this take on an exploding box card – I’ll definitely be making more on my own!!!