Monday, April 28, 2014

Today, I scrapbook.

If you've ever created for a living, you know two things to be very true.

1. You're remarkably blessed to earn money by doing a hobby you love. I mean, how many get to say that playing with paper helps pay their bills? It really is a dream opportunity.

2. Creativity on demand can be. . . well, demanding. There's no magical switch to hit while on a deadline, and sometimes those ideas simply don't want to come. For some, myself included, this can suck the fun out of crafting. Take it from being a hobby to be enjoyed o a task that needs accomplished. This isn't always the case, but it has been known to happen. Just like if you work in a Snow Shack. You don't necessarily want to come home and eat snow cones for fun . . . actually, as a former Shack employee, I realize this isn't the best analogy, but you get where I'm going.

This brings me to my point. Finally. I haven't scrapbooked for myself since losing my job back in Sept. My crafty heart is still healing, and I just haven't had the desire to touch my scrapbooking supplies. This doesn't mean I haven't. I've created several layouts for various assignments I've been blessed to receive (per aforementioned item #1), but I haven't sat down just to let my scrappy juices flow . . . until now.

On Saturday, my Facebook update was simple. "Today, I scrapbook."

These three little words received over 100 likes. It's almost as if you felt their significance without my having to elaborate on what an accomplishment this was. Thank you for getting it.

And now, I have projects I've created that bring me joy. And I created them simply because I felt motivated to do so. Isn't that something? It sounds silly, perhaps, but it's something special to me.

So, today, I scrapbook!

And with Nat'l Scrapbooking Day this Saturday, the timing is perfect. I'm participating in Big Picture Classes' big Nat'l Scrapbook Day10K event this week, which means I'll be posting some of my pages to my Instagram account as part of a group effort to get 10,000 layouts uploaded. Isn't that great? More on that soon. In the meantime, my baby girl is spending the day with her grandparents and I have a date with my craft room. Simply because I want to be there.


Thursday, April 17, 2014

Out-of-the-basket Easter Giving

Tired of the same ol' basket business? When it comes to Easter giving, why not switch things up with a few beyond-the-basket ideas? I'm a bit of an egghead, so I had much fun putting together these special surprises, which I'll be sharing today on Studio 5 (1:00 PM on Utah's channel 5).

A Tisket, A Tasket; It's an Easter Hat-sket

I love my man, but he can be difficult to buy for. With that in mind, I decided to opt out of the traditional bunny basket and fill a hat with treats for him instead. Loved taking this approach, as it helped guide my entire buying experience from the "basket" inward.

Possible Gifts for Him
* T-shirt
* Boxers
* Fun socks
* Watch
* Wallet
* Candy (of course!)
* Gift Card
* Belt
* Beef Jerky
* Bottle of Soda (one of those pretty glass bottles is always nice)
* Whoopie Cushion (what guy can resist a good gas joke?)

How Does Your Garden Grow Box

For the gardner in your life, look at replacing traditional Easter treats with a basket of bloomin' goodness. I got this adorable crate at Maison Boutique in Sugarhouse. It's heavy-duty and perfect for containing some budding basket ideas. Plus, it has an adorable chalkboard front, just right for personalizing!

Possible Garden Gifts to Include:
* Seeds
* Watering Can
* Gloves
* Shovel
* Herb Picks
* Garden Friend (like my bunny above, purchased at Target)
* Solar Lights
* Patio Lights
* Water Ball (the glass globe above, also purchased at Target)


The tiny tots don't need much. Heck, my Mags would be happy with an empty Easter egg at this age. Thus, I decided to go small and fill a little berry basket with a few sweets for her. The berry basket is from a local shop called Zurchers *love*, and you can get a big stack of them for around $4. Perfect if you're hosting an Easter gathering a want a little something for each guest!

Possible Tot Treats to Include (for ages 6-24 months, approximately)
* Stuffed Friend (rabbit shown above from Target)
* Jumbo Crayons
* Bubbles
* Rattle
* Small Pack of Candy (Don't need a sugar rush, but a little sweet treat is nice.)
* Cars
* Bouncy Ball
* Sidewalk Chalk
* Play Dough
* Cute Socks

Teen-y Basket

Okay, so this is a basket, but it's bitty, so it's a bit atypical in that sense, right? I picked it up at Jo-Ann for a single buckaroo. That's right; $1! Knowing the teens in my life, I knew I wouldn't need much to make 'em happy. They like to do their own buying, so I simply opted for this teeny, teen-y basket, which is just right for containing a gift card (or cold, hard cash) and some candy.

Do It To It
Here's how I transformed the basket into a completely unique treat holder.

1. Apply coat of Mod Podge (or other decoupage).

2. Press tissue paper into Mod Pod, smoothing out any air bubbles. Note: I used the AWESOME tissue from Hazel & Ruby, which was so easy to work with for this type of craft!

3. Once Mod Podge is dry, position stencils on basket. I spelled "L-O-V-E" using the Hazel & Ruby stencils, which are... yes, AWESOME! ;)

4. Apply a thin coat of white paint over basket.

5. Remove stencils and wipe clean with a wet wipe; apply a top coat of glitter Mod Podge (or regular, if you'd like) to seal.

6. Add washi tape to handle and basket rim to complete. Note: You may want to add top coat of Mod Podge after you've added tape. I used the lovely Hazel & Ruby tape on my basket. Oh, why yes, it IS awesome. How'd ya know?

This may seem like a bunch of steps, but this process actually comes together quickly. Hope you'll give it a try. It's fun to get those fingers dirty once in a while, and your basket recipient will L-O-V-E it.
Note: This is also a great way to customize baskets with names.

Over the River and Through the Woods Suitcase

Don't forget the Grands. Wanting to show my parents how much their love and support always means, I put a little extra energy into making their "basket." It's actually a little paper suitcase I picked up on clearance at Target. I then used the amazing stencils and tissue paper from Hazel & Ruby to completely customize the outside, following the same basic techniques outlined above for my Teen-y Treat.

Possible Goods for the Grands Include: 
* A Picture of Your Little Bunny (a must! they'll love this most of all! my pic was taken by the talented Misty Lane Photography.)
* Their Fav Treats (For Meemaw, it's a small pack of Milano cookies; for Granddad, it's a good ol' bag of GORP [aka trail mix])
* A Game or Activity They Can Enjoy with Your Children (bubbles, sidewalk chalk, etc.)
* Hand Towel or Other Holiday Linen
* Drawings by Your Kiddo(s)
* Tickets to a Movie or Play

Bunny Business

Are you one who likes to keep things simple when it comes to Easter giving? No worries at all. In fact, I fully support scaling the holidays back a bit overall. So, if candy is your preferred approach, why not bag it in a way that is both adorable and fun to make? Inspired by this well written tutorial (and super duper cuteness), I decided to make some felt buns.

Possible Bunny Business to Include
* Candy
* Candy
* Candy
* Or you can fill them with beans, as the tutorial suggests, and they act as a decor piece instead. AKA A Beanie Baby!

EOS = Easter O' Style
I shared this Studio 5 teaser on my last blog post, so you'll find more info on it there.

Meh... What's Up, Doc?
Well, I have a few things coming up, which I'll tease briefly on Studio 5. Here is more info on those happy happenings:

1. CreativeLIVE

Excited would be an understatement. I've over-the-moon about this opportunity to teach with CreativeLIVE. My class is this July, and I'll have more info to come soon. In the meantime, you can check out the deets here. Oh, and guess what! It's $free.99! Yup! If you watch it live, you can stream it for free online, just like watching a TV show. Or you can pay a reasonable $49 for two full days of jam-packed instruction. Either way, it's a screamin' deal! :)

2. Beehive Bazaar

This is for the locals. I'm thrilled to be participating for the first time ever at the popular Beehive Bazaar next month (May 8-10)! Hope you'll come on down and see what I have to offer. You're sure to find plenty of gifts for Mother's Day at this sweet shopping spot, including my floral rosette bracelets. Want a bracelet but aren't in town or can't attend the bazaar? No problem! Simply shoot me an email at m2e2g @ (no spaces), and I'll get you taken care of!


Whew! Lots happenin' in this neck of the woods. Hope the I've inspired you to get your egghead on and do Easter a little differently this year.

I'm wishing you and yours many blessings this special weekend. All of the hoopla aside, it's a time to celebrate rebirth and fresh starts. Here's hoping you start off on the right foot (unless the left is more your speed).

Warmth and love!

P.S. Check back tomorrow for more info on my second Studio 5 segment that aired today, which is all about brush script. I'll link you to some awesome free downloads and share a few shopping secrets I hope you'll love.

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Sweet Easter Treat (and it's even zero calories!)

You might say I have a crush on this Easter goodie. Nope. It's not Rainblow Eggs, but I share almost as much love for these, which is odd, considering they're not even edible.

What's inside this carton, you ask? Well, let's pry it open and take a peek.

It's EOS lip balm! Betcha thought E.O.S. stood for Evolution of Smooth (or you didn't know what it stood for, like me). Nah. Not here. Now it stands for Easter O' Style!

Available in many flavors and colors, these little lip eggs look so pretty filling up a paper carton. Surprise your best friend, coworkers, or other special gal. Or give that special guy a less-than-subtle hint. *wink wink* 

Of course, I'm all for adding a personalized touch, so I put some paper on the lid and added a washi-tape bow by pleating the tape. The gold rub-ons are by Maggie Holmes for Crate Paper, and they're some of my favs. They even worked ON washi!

The cute carton? Why, it's from Shop Sweet Lulu, an adorable online store. No time to order? No worries. Just slice a regular carton in half. Or, if you're feeling egg-stra generous, give someone 12 balms. I assure you they will not be disappointed to have a lifetime collection. 

I'm sharing this and many more out-of-the-basket Easter giving ideas this Thursday on Studio 5. If you're local (UT), tune in to channel 5 at 1. Or you can watch it stream online at 1:00 MST right here! Hope you'll hop on over. 

I'm always seeking fun and unexpected gift ideas. What gift would YOU put in this bitty egg carton?


Monday, April 14, 2014

Eggs-tra, Eggs-tra! Read all about it!

Shake things up this Easter with a sequin-filled, semi see-through, Eggarland! It's fun to make and will add color to your world!

I decided to make one a few weeks ago, after my friends at Doodlebug surprised me with this package of divine vellum and sparkling sequins. (I have the kindest friends!) Upon opening it, I immediately knew I wanted to incorporate it into my home decor, and the Eggarland hatched!

Do it To it!
Here's how to hatch your own sparkle-filled eggs:

1. Cut 3"x12" strips from 12x12 sheets of vellum.

2. Fold each strip into thirds.

3. Fold thirds in half and position egg shape on bundle to be used as cutting template.

4. Cut out around egg.

5. You should now have two sets of mirror-image eggs (when placed back to back).

6. Sew around majority of egg pair (again, when it's placed back to back) using sewing machine or by hand stitching.

7. Fill egg with sequins.

8. Sew remainder of egg closed.

9. Cut around sewn egg using pinking sheers.

10. Spell "Easter" on six of your eggs using sequins to create letters. Stitch around letter to secure and then stitch egg to mirror image (back to back) without filling it with sequins.

11. String your Eggarland up in front of a door or window where it will catch the light.

Shake, shake, shake! Easter is in the air!