Tuesday, October 18, 2016

Leisure Arts Holiday Craft Books Review

**this post contains affiliate links . . . by clicking on them I will make a small commission on your sales.**

It is that time of year . . . the air is getting cooler, the leaves are falling, and the stores are starting to bring out the holiday decorations and supplies.  If you are thinking of creating your own holiday decor this year, Leisure Arts has some great books to inspire you.

Every year at the holidays I think I end up making at least a few items.  Christmas stockings, wreaths, ornaments, decorations for around the house or gift to give . . . oh, and cards and gift tags . . . lots of those!  I find my inspiration in the stores, online and of course in crafting books.

Open House Merriment will help guide you as you create home decor items for the holidays, ornaments that could be given as gifts or treats for a holiday gathering.

Holiday Crafts

Each page of this book is filled with project ideas to inspire you.  You will also find a full list of supplies and step by step directions.

Not only does this book contain great holiday decor items, but it also has recipes for your holiday gatherings.  I don't do a lot of cooking, but at the holidays I always seem to find some time to bake, and I cannot wait to try some of these treats!  The Mini Pumpkin Cheesecakes (pictured above) would be perfect to bring to a party or potluck at work.  Other recipes include Lemon Shortbread Tartlets, Chocolate Mousse and Amaretto Peach Desserts . . . YUM!

There is also a whole section of this book called Christmas is for Kids, which includes projects you can make with your family.  The holidays is all about family so why not do some crafting and share your hobby with the kids!

If you are a yarn crafter, Yarn Whimsies is filled with projects just for you . . . some of them you could create from scraps you probably already have in your yarn stash!  Who doesn't love a project that uses up all of those scraps that you already have!

Yarn Whimsies

For the paper crafters, Holiday Papercrafting will give you a few new ideas for the holiday season.  I have already started working on a project from this book, and I will be sharing that with all of you once I complete it.

Holiday Papercrafting

Another feature I like about these books is that they include patterns and templates in the back of the books for some of the different shapes and images you will need for the projects.  Some of these projects are easy enough that you could complete them in an evening, or do them with your children/grandchildren for a family project.

Are you ready to get crafting?  Let's make this holiday season special with inspiration from books from Leisure Arts!

Saturday, October 8, 2016

Disney Pixar Blog Hop - October 2016! - Mickey Mouse Wine Bottle

Welcome to the Disney Pixar Blog Hop!

Disney and crafting are a magical combination, and we are so happy you joined us to day for this blog hop.  Some of the crafters participating in this event have been doing this together since 2011!  Over the years the hop has grown but one thing has always stayed the same . . . amazing crafting projects that feature your favorite characters from Disney and Pixar movies.

For 2016 we are going to have a hop every other month for the entire year!  If you missed one of the hops we already had this year, you can still go back and see the projects.  For February click HERE, for April click HERE, for June click HERE and for August click HERE. If you are on Facebook you can like the group page so that you can be the first to learn about each upcoming event.  Just click HERE to go the the Facebook page.

To make sure you don't miss any of the fun, be sure to start at Shawn's blog to see all of the projects.  Just click HERE to head over to Shawn's blog and then follow the hop line up at the bottom of the post to see everyone's projects.

For this project I decided to use up some yarn I had from a blanket I made a LONG TIME AGO and decorate an empty wine bottle I had.  Wine bottle crafts are so popular right now.

I started off by making long chains of both red and black yarn.  This was a great project to do while watching television since I could just mindlessly do the same chain stitch over and over.

Next I  used a cosmetic sponge to applied some Mod Podge to the top of the wine bottle. 

I place the end of the black chain of yarn on top of the Mod Podge and allowed that to dry.  This helped to secure and hold the beginning of the chain in place while I was wrapping the rest of the chain.

Then I applied more Mod Podge and just continued to wrap the chain around the bottle.  I worked it in sections, applying the Mod Podge and then wrapping to cover the bottle before the Mod Podge dried.

When I got about half way down the body of the bottle I wanted to change colors.  I cut and knotted off the chain, and applied Mod Podge right to the knot to help secure it.  I made sure to do this on the portion of the bottle that would end up being the back of the project.  Once this dried I applied more Mod Podge and placed the beginning of the red chain right where the black chain ended.  

I let that dry so that it was secure, and then I finished wrapping the bottle with the red chain in the same manner that I did with the black . . . apply some Mod Podge and then wrap, apply more Mod Podge and wrap.  When I got to the bottom I knotted off the red and applied more Mod Podge to secure the yarn at the bottom.

Last, I added two white buttons to the front of the bottle.

I have a display shelf/space at our house, and I have a Mickey Mouse statue that sits in this display area, and this wine bottle makes the perfect addition to the display!

Before you go, make sure to enter to win our prize for this hop . . .

We have a prize from Paper Wizard!  You could win one of their Mouse Wreaths, which is pictured in the image below!  This is perfect for a Disney scrapbook or to turn into a home decor item.

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a Rafflecopter giveaway

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Good luck, and enjoy the rest of the hop!

The full blog hop line up is below.  

Saturday, October 1, 2016

Minnie Mouse Birthday Card

This Minnie Mouse card was created for my niece's birthday.

Since I wanted Minnie Mouse's dress to be out of the same cardstock as the background, which is a pink from the DCWV shimmer paper stack, I first cut the overall piece the size I needed to cover the base of the card.  Then I made the dress cut with my Cricut inside that piece.  I knew that I was planning to place some patterned cardstock over the top of this, and that would cover the spot where I had cut the dress out.

I decided I wanted to give a little extra shimmer to Minnie's outfit, so I grabbed my lavender iCraft Deco Foil and Zig 2 way pen.  I covered the belt/sash portion of the dress with glue using my Zig pen.

Then I placed the iCraft Deco Foil over the top and rubbed with my finger.  

When I pulled the foil off, you can see that it stuck where I had applied the glue.

The finished card was one that shimmered and put a smile on my niece's face for her first birthday!

Make sure to stop back next weekend!  I am hosting a Disney Pixar Blog Hop!  We have a line up of 5 crafters who will all be sharing Disney or Pixar inspired projects.

Tuesday, September 20, 2016

Halloween Crafting Ideas

If you are looking for some great new Halloween crafting ideas, you should check out AllFreeHolidayCrafts.com!  If you are looking for trick or treat bags, costumes, home decor or even recipes for your Halloween gathering you will find it all in one spot!

Here is a sampling of some of the newest projects.  That is my Donald Duck Inspired Shirt project in the upper right hand corner of the image below.

Monday, September 19, 2016

Getting More Traffic to Your Blog

As a craft blogger, one of the things you think about is how much traffic is coming to your blog.  One great way to increase your traffic is to connect with other crafters and share your projects . . . get involved in a challenge, blog hop or link up party.

Over the past year, I have been submitting a lot of my projects to places like AllFreePaperCrafts.com

When their editors are looking to put a new collection of project together, maybe a collection of birthday cards, they will link them together in a newsletter that goes out to THOUSANDS of people on their mailing list.  If one of your cards is featured in one of these collections you will see a HUGE increase in the amount of traffic to your site that is all going towards that one project.  It is also fun when you get the email for the newsletter and open it up to see one of your projects . . . like I did with my Pop Up Birthday Card highlighted below.
My Pop Up Birthday Card on the AllFreePaperCrafts.com site . . . click HERE
You can check out my Paper Craft Designer page by clicking HERE.

Wednesday, September 14, 2016


Have you checked out AllFreePaperCrafts.com recently?  I was just over there and saw this . . .

Yep, that is MY NAME in the number one spot on the What's Hot list!  If you have not checked out my Paper Craft Designer Page on there site you can see it by clicking HERE.  Below my photo and bio, you will find links to all of the projects I have listed on AllFreePaperCrafts.com

I also have a page over at AllFreeChristmasCrafts.com . . . click HERE to see that page.

Thursday, September 8, 2016

Cricut September Mystery Box

Have you purchased your September Cricut Mystery Box yet? If not, there is still time . . . just click on the image below.


I did a little research, and I was able to find out that this box includes 5 rolls of the NEW Cricut Faux Leather!  What a great way to add the look of leather to your projects!  It also includes 3 cartridges - Home Decor Vinyl Wall Art, Home for the Holidays Fall and Winter, and Simple Cards.

Be sure to check out all of the newest products at Cricut

New Products - Faux Leather, Elmo's Play Day Digital Cartridge