Saturday, September 21, 2013

Hot, hot, hot...

Disney Fantasy cruise ship arrives in Port Canaveral, Florida to prepare for maiden voyage on March 31
Well I hope it is, because I am writing this on Monday September 16th but you are hopefully reading it whilst we are cruising on the Disney Fantasy.  Thank you Lisa for introducing us to this style of vacation!

Decided to post this blog a little early as the scheduling doesn't always appear to work.
It's  ten in the morning, we've breakfasted and had a swim, now doing the last minute rearranging of suitcases before our shuttle arrives at noon.  We can look out of our hotel window and see our ship docked waiting for our arrival at twelve thirty.
Weather is amazing....going to be a great cruise I'm sure.

So did I inspire you last week to try a new craft or help out a charity after reading about all those charities that need our help? 
We love to hear your feedback as we did with Pauline and the slippers she made from a link I gave you.

Today I want to focus more on the paper crafters in our midst, in particular the scrapbookers as they prepare for their weekend getaway.

They will by now be busily sorting through the photos that they want to preserve in a scrapbook album. 
Don't forget scrappers, that even the bad photos are worth using if that's all you have.  They too will preserve a memory and take your mind back to that moment in time when the photo was taken.

For those of you that don't know the difference between a scrapbook album and a photo album, it's simple. 

If I was to show you the photos in a photo album of our Disney cruise for example.  Very soon you would get bored of page after page of 4x6 photos that I have to explain to you who, what, where, when and why they were taken.  

scrapbook album you are able to look through the very best photos of a trip or event where the five "w's" are taken care of in an interesting manner. 

Every page would be a different design, colour and along with that would be a short "story" of what you are seeing on that page.  The "story" can be in depth or very simply told by strip journaling, short multiple lines of information.

This is a great example of a scrapbook page where you can see a variety of different sized photos that add to the interest of the page.   
The title on the banners to the right tells you where it was, the tickets on the left tell you when it was. The journaling, telling of the story, is to the right side, which after you read it you will know those involved in the page and why they were at Wonderland in August of 2012.  
Don't you love the bright colours too.

Here's another lovely page with vastly different colours and again with all the information readily available for the reader. 

This time the "story telling" is done by way of strip journaling.

That in a nutshell is what makes scrapbooking so much more interesting to the eye than a photo album with 4x6 photos in sleeves on a page.  Though perhaps those photos will have labels to identify the people and places in the photos.  

Every time you turn a page in a scrapbook album you will see something uniquely different to not only catch your interest, but to keep it so that you simply have to keep turning pages to discover what else there is to see.

Of course that's being said to you by a scrapbooker and I'm more than aware that not everyone has the same tastes as me, but WHY NOT????  

I would invite you to drop into the Rotary Centre for Youth on the weekend of the Mega Crop (October 18-20th) and see for yourself the beautiful work of the thirty five ladies who will be enjoying their art.  They come from all different walks of life, therefore having many different styles, but all enjoy the same craft and are happy to teach, learn and share with one another. So why don't you take a few minutes out of your busy day, drop in and see what they are up to.

And for the card makers in our midst.  I've been asked a number of times about the pop out flower card I made here for Emily. Scroll down a little to see it.  I found a Martha Stewart tutorial for you so that now you can make one for someone special too.

Until Later....Happy Crafting


Monday, September 16, 2013

The Season it is a Changing

We have lots of activity at our bird feeder right now and the squirrels are busily stocking up for winter too. Won't be long now before we are raking up the leaves instead of cutting the grass.  Have you ever thought about that?  Winter we shovel snow, Spring we pick up the winter debris, Summer we cut grass and Fall we rake leaves, hmmm condo living almost sounds attractive. Operative word...almost.

Did you go to the Fall Fair this weekend?   My hubby and I went on Friday night with Linda's family.  The girls were most excited to find out how their fall entries fared.  As you know Rachel entered the doll that she made recently and Emily entered some art work, a scrapbook page and bracelet. We bumped into Jonathan there too and he had entered some of his photography.  

He's been getting lots of pointers from his Uncle Randy, Linda's husband.

Well you can imagine they were all pretty pleased to find they had ribbons on their various works of art. 

Emily had a first in her age group and category for her bracelet with an honorable mention for her scrapbook page.  

Rachel and Jonathan both had a second in their age group and categories. Their age group went from thirteen to nineteen (they are fourteen) which is quite a wide age range, so they were very happy with their results.

All in all there were many entries and although I have to admit I much prefer to look at the needle art and crafting type categories, there were some pretty nice looking food entries there too.  Linda and I were able to recognise a number of cross stitch items that had been sold from our store and beautifully worked and then matted and framed.

I'm very much a fall person and was really taken with a cross stitch fall scene that was quite stunning.

Though not a quilter I can very much appreciate the art form and the hours that go into making a quilt, so they were a pleasure to look at too.  I do hope you had the opportunity to wander around the exhibits as I did and along with that to meet your friends and neighbors there too.

Very soon now Linda and I will be off on vacation for a short time.  When our daughter Sandra's boss asked her what she was doing for her vacation and where she was going, her response was the best  of what we like...a cruise and Disney all in one.

I've been busily working on the cards ready for the Christmas Card classes when we return and Linda's been creating the samples for the Scrapbooking weekend.  
I do believe there is only one spot left for the weekend, so if you're sitting on the fence....get off it before the gate is closed!

All in all we will have our feet down running when we get back, but we will be ready.

We mentioned last week that all the Christmas Card Classes were filled now, but we're still been getting inquiries about them.  If you missed out on the three classes but would like the opportunity still, then get in touch with either Elaine or Judy and have them put your name down on a waiting list.  
If there's enough interest we will open up a fourth class on a Saturday in November, though don't know a date yet.

It always interests Linda and I how many long distance customers we have. On Saturday I had a customer from Saskatchewan phone me wanting us to send some pillowcases and dressers scarves out to her.   We've done this a number of times as she's unable to source them around her and she was vacationing here a couple of years ago when she came into the store and saw what we carry.

Early last week we had another couple of ladies in from PEI saying much the same thing, though cross stitch was their passion.  They went out with a number of projects and a business card.  We often don't appreciate that which is on our own doorstep until we hear from others what we have that they can't access.  Made me do a mental walk around our town and realise we have a nice variety of shopping experiences here.

This is the cross stitch that I so admired at the fall fair (not the actual one, an image of the design).

Does it make you want to learn to cross stitch?  We have some lovely beginner pieces in the store and would be happy to get you started.

I think at least two of us will be cross stitching as we journey down to Cape Canaveral this week.

Or if embroidery is what you would like to learn then we have stamped pillowcases like this, along with many other designs.
If pillowcases aren't what you are looking for, then there are quilt blocks to embroider, tea towels, dresser scarves to name a few.
You won't be bored this winter if you learn a new craft. Keeping your hands busy will make the long winter will fly by.

For the knitters that come into our store I thought you may like to know about this.  I subscribe to Leisure Arts website and every Friday they put out a free knitting and crochet pattern.  The other week their free pattern was the most delightful Pierre the Beret Bear.  You can see him here, though unfortunately he is no longer free...still cute though and he has a sister too.

I had told another customer who was knitting some lovely bears for the Christmas Shoe Box program of a doll my mother used to make for the same reason.  Our customer had said, lovely though the bears were...and they indeed were, they were very time consuming hence she couldn't make as many as she would like.

When I linked her up with these comfort dolls, she was thrilled because now she can make and donate so many more dolls. 

Here's the link for the easy doll pattern, just scroll down a little to read the pattern many more dolls. 
Although the pattern shows them as one piece, our customer knits them on a knitting loom in the round. She changes colours as she goes and then simply sews in the arm and leg placement after they're stuffed.

This is the teddy bear that my sister-in-law in England has been knitting for the Fish and Chip baby charities. 
So many people in Africa have so little that they are taking their babies home wrapped in paper and have been dubbed "Fish and Chip" babies.  Many groups are knitting for these babies.

How can anyone say they're bored or have nothing to do when there are so many worthwhile charities out there just looking for help.

I hope that once again I've inspired you to try something new, or use the skills you have to keep your hands busy for yourself or others.

Until Later....Happy Crafting


Tuesday, September 10, 2013

What a Whirlwind Couple of Weeks!!!

With registration for the crop weekend at the end of August and then registration for the All Day Christmas Card Classes, I feel like I've been in the middle of a whirlwind!  On top of that our family holiday is fast coming upon us as well.

Here's some of what my daughter Sandra has been busy making on her Silhouette machine.  
These will be put on the doors of our cabin when we sail on our Disney cruise.
Aren't they great? 
She's also made a number of plain black Mickey heads as fillers.

Each one of us has a particular Disney character as well.  I'll show you them a little later as there's still some detail work to be done.

She didn't stop there though.  She went on to make us all lanyards to hold our cabin keys.  The heads are made from two small and one larger metal washer.  Sandra then coloured them with nail polish, wired them together to make Mickey heads and with good old Glossy Accents, attached them to the ribbon lanyards.  The photo shows eight and there are nine of us going, so one more to go before she's done with these. Hard on the hands as she wires the metal washers together.

Amazing what a little creative thinking can achieve isn't it.

We have many talented scrapbookers in our midst too(see a sampling to the right and more here) and as the scrapbooking registrants prepare for their busy weekend in October, they have been asking a number of questions on how best to prepare for the weekend.  (Only two spots left in this weekend, so get moving if you think you want to participate in a weekend of fun, learning and laughter).

Last week I directed you to this article on preparation, just scroll down a little to read the article. 

Another question we've been asked is how to find a "catchy" title for the pages that are created.  Well here's another link I've directed you to before, but well worth looking at again and maybe even bookmarking it for future reference.  
On the left hand side you will see Titles, Quotes and Sayings.  If you click on one that seems pertinent to the page you are creating, for example, Beach. Then a list of ideas for beach pages will be displayed down the middle.  
Even if they don't quite hit the mark for you, chances are they'll get the juices flowing and you'll come up with your own unique title.

We also have card makers gearing up for the Christmas season as they registered for the All Day Christmas Card Classes. Can you believe that in just a little over five days all three classes were totally filled? It leaves us reeling in disbelief sometimes I can tell you.  
That's sixty ladies that have signed up to these classes.

On the left you will see one of the cards from last years Christmas Card Class.

One of the questions I was asked by a card maker was, where do you get the verses for inside your cards?  Well I do have a file of verses that I've compiled over the years by looking in store bought cards I've received, but I've also have found some websites that have been helpful.  
Here's one that I bumped into just recently and though I haven't had much time to browse through it thoroughly, on the surface it looks interesting.  
It's in alphabetical order and first you need to find the category that interests you, for example, anniversary.  Then simply click on the red arrow and a series of ideas will scroll by for you to use.  You would then have to type them up into a program such as Word and print the verse.

So how did all you Mommy's make out in the first week of school?  
With mixed up schedules or lack thereof to begin with, High School is a new experience for both Jonathan and Rachel.  
For Emily this is the first time she's been in Public School without either her big sister or cousin, so different for her too this year.  

Back to School : Dry Erase Chore Charts. Get the free printable at
I came across these two crafts for school that you may find worth exploring to help keep you and your children organized. This one to the right can be found here and Desiree has created two printable files to make this lovely dry erase board in a frame. Just scroll down a little and you will see a place to click to take you to the file.

The other craft I found showed how with a little stitching you can alter a plain ordinary binder into a very functional and attractive storage binder. 
Hop on over here to see a clear tutorial.

Speaking of sewing, I'll have another doll to show you soon.  

Rachel has been busily creating a "sister" to Sunflower, scroll down a little and you will see the doll she mad and gave away to her cousin in England.  Just a few little touch ups to her hairband and she will be ready to be entered into this year's Fall Fair.  With a busy summer working at Santa's Village, Rachel has diligently tea dyed, cut and sewn this doll again from scratch.  Thanks to her Aunty Marta giving her a mop she made the hair with some of the mop strands.  She was surprised how easy it was to make after looking at this tutorial here

I heard from Pauline this week that she took advantage of a link for the crochet slipper tutorial that I gave you a couple of weeks ago here.  She told me they were very quick and easy to make.  It's always interesting to hear back from people as they make use of the links  I put into the blog.  There are some wonderful, creative, sharing people out there in blog-land who simply love to craft!

Did you see in the newsletter the Distress Ink card that we made in class last week?  How I love the magic of those inks.  A plain white sheet of cardstock, an inking tool and very little effort will change that sheet of cardstock into a magical colour of your choice. Here are a few more samples that were created with the Distress Ink and Scotch Glue technique.

Until Later...
Happy Crafting and Remember to..........


Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Short and Fast Week

That's the way it seemed to me anyway, how about you?  Part of my day off on Wednesday was spent baking fifteen zucchini loaves, my how we do like zucchini bread.  Many thanks to Tracy for the zucchini she gave me. She had a very full harvest this year and was kind enough to share with a number of people.

Then of course we had the registration on Thursday for the Mega Crop weekend.
With some ladies waiting at the door for us to arrive and each of them signing up for themselves and perhaps a friend or two, the early bird special was gone in no time!
By the end of the day we had thirty two people registered and now there are only two spots left.  So if you were thinking about registering but haven't yet, don't delay or the Mega Crop weekend will begin without you.  

Don't forget too that the class we offer at the weekend Mega Crop is open to others even if you aren't able to attend the whole weekend.  Just drop in and register for the class only.  I know there are a few spots left in it and for just $20.00 it's a great value.

Sunday we celebrated Emily's 11th birthday with a lovely barbecue.  She was really happy with all her gifts of course, but I think Mike Wazowski found a special place in her heart.
Today she sent me the photos she'd taken of Mike and the card her Mommy made her and the one that I made for her.  She thought I'd like to put them on the blog she said.

First let's introduce you to Mike....
Now you can see that Mike has four tiny fingers and four tiny toes.
My oh my they were a challenge to crochet.  With just three stitches for each finger or toe, to crochet in a round was to say the least, a little compact.
However whilst travelling last weekend I was able to make both legs, then one of them vanished so I had to make another....just so much fun!!!

All worth it when I saw the look on Emily's face.  Also as she realised I had tricked her into choosing the yarn colour for me under the pretext of making something else.

And here is the card that Linda made for Emily.  
Some of you ladies may remember making a card similar to this one in a Thursday technique class.  Linda took the same idea and personalised it for Emily.

Can you guess two of her favourite colours?

Here's the outside of the card I made for Emily's birthday.
The tag on the outside is a bookmark as well because she does love to read.
She took two photos of the flower burst inside the card so that you could see the full effect.  

The flowers burst open as she opened the card and such an easy pop out card to make. 
She does like the action cards...LOL.
Don't you think she did some lovely photography too of all the things she wanted to share with you?

I haven't had a lot of time this week to browse the web for many crafting ideas for you as we begin the prep work for not only the Mega Crop weekend, but of course the All Day Christmas Card classes which are coming up soon.
Did you see in Linda's newsletter that registration has opened for the Christmas Card Classes now?  If you've asked us to pencil your name in for a particular week, make sure you call and confirm with your class payment to secure your spot.

Here are a few links that you may like though.

I found this free pattern for a really smart looking masculine scarf.  I would suggest it's not a beginner knitters pattern, but I believe if you want to make something be it hard or easy, you can do it.

If you're an embroiderer how about  this fun free design.   There are some great photos here showing you how to use an embroidery hoop and great tip at the end of the article too.

Or maybe you like to keep your "stuff" organised so that you know what you have and can see it at a glance.  

Well then how about making this mini swatch book of all the Cuttlebug folders that you own.  A great way to see them at a glance and perhaps use them more frequently.

One of the ladies that signed up for the Mega Crop Weekend was asking the best way to prepare for the weekend to be the most productive. 

I always tell people of Barb who attends the Mega Crop weekends and for a couple of weeks prior to the weekend will come into the store with her file folder or page protector that has a page sketch she intends to follow, along with the photos she will use for that page. Between us we choose the papers that she likes for that sketch and they go into the folder too.
Not only does this help her to be super productive, it's the best way to purchase paper, rather than pads that you may only use half of, or papers that you fall in love with when you see them but can never quite put them to use.
I also mentioned how we had included an article in the spring with great tips to enable a scrapper to do just that which also made some suggestions as to how to pack for a weekend too.

So thought I would link you back to that again, especially as I know there are a group of scrappers coming from a distance who have to do some "creative packing" in order to get themselves as well as their "stuff" into the vehicle.
Anyway the article is worth the read to be well prepared for this Mega Crop, just scroll down a little on the blog post to read it.

Until Later....Happy Crafting