• Live Life Inspired. Dream With Possibility! Donna Downey
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Butterfly Photo Holder

Another Michael’s unfinished wood find – $2 and because it’s basically just a block of wood – SUPER quick to alter!  If you’re looking for a beginner item to get your feet wet on altering, this would be an ideal project.   Simply cut your patterned paper (I used some Basic Grey) to the sizes of the sides and top.  

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Adhere them using Helmar Professional Acid Free Glue.  Cut out a couple of butterflies from more Basic Grey paper (or whatever embellishments float your boat for your project), do a little bending for dimension and adhere using Helmar ScrapDots for even more dimension.  A little bit of Scribbles action to get things glittery, of course.  A quick bow out of ribbon, a few Prima flowers and a teeny tiny button brad (Making Memories – I just love these!) and it’s done.  Really.  It’s that easy!

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Bittersweet Storage House

This piece was one I featured in an article in the February issue of Scrapbook News + Review on altered items for your craft room/studio.  I gave up on buying pre-made storage for my craft supplies ages ago.  I’ve found that by thinking outside the box I can come up with something custom-fit for just about any supply PLUS I get to alter it – woohoo!  I pretty much stalk the unfinished wood section of Michael’s.  Hobby Lobby is my other option, but I’ve found I don’t like their selection quite as well (or their quality – always check each piece before purchasing!) and they don’t change out their stock as often as Michael’s does.  When I came across this house shadow box (I think it was $5), my mind just raced with all the possibilities for what might fit into those cute little sections!  

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I’ve pictured here a variety of things that fit into the sections, but I actually use it solely for my Stickles and Glossy/Crackle Accents.  I like having those out and handy plus being able to see the Stickles colors at a glance.

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First I painted the whole thing with black acrylic paint (Jo Sonja’s by Chroma – it’s a nice, thick paint in a tube.  Step above craft grade, step below artist grade).  Then I started playing with the papers from the Bittersweet line from Basic Grey and just filling in all the spaces.  Paper packs are awesome for projects like this where you want a variety of papers – they’re all pre-coordinated!  I used an Xacto knife to cut out a few strips from one of the papers to decorate the “attic” area.  Then I just started dotting away with Scribbles (Duncan) in a shiny pink to make the edges more interesting.  Even with drying time on the Mod Podge and paint, I think the whole project only took me a couple of hours.  

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So next time you’re out at your local craft store, wander through the unfinished wood section and think outside the box!  Take a piece over to the scrapbook section to see what might fit – you might be surprised!!!

Anti-Valentine ATC

Obviously, despite loving to make projects for Valentine’s Day, it’s not exactly my favorite holiday, lol.  I made this ATC to temper all the lovey-dovey stuff I was making but not “feeling” this year.  Patterned papers and sticker from the Basic Grey Bittersweet line.  I cut the sticker and inked all the edges of the sticker and the ATC.  The epoxy hearts were actually one of the puffy ones from Making Memories that I simply split in half and used both sides.  The metal letters were originally gold and I covered them with alcohol ink to change the color.  I used the Around the Block tape embosser to do the wording.

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Love is All You Need Magnet

This was a quick little project that pretty much just came from the need to play with the Basic Grey Bittersweet line some more.  😉  I used a chipboard heart from Making Memories and covered it with the striped paper.  Then the hearts and quote are both stickers I layered and then edged with Distress Stickles (Ranger).  The dots around the edges are more Distress Stickles.  Added 3 small button magnets to the back using Helmar’s 450 Quick Dry Glue and voila – instant love for my fridge.

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Bittersweet Hearts Canvas

Ready for the late Valentine’s Day flurry?  I know.  You usually get the bulk of my holiday items right after the holiday, lol, but it’s because they’ve been in Scrapbook News + Review magazine and I can’t post them here until the month following the issue debut!  This is a 16″x20″ canvas I did using the new Basic Grey Bittersweet collection and a couple of fun techniques.  Oh!  And I’ve also got another Valentine project (a small dollar store frame) up at the Helmar DT blog today – be sure to check that one out for another fun technique!

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Let’s start with the canvas itself.  I knew the effect I wanted, but on a canvas this size, knew I didn’t have enough Glimmer Mists or even the right shade to make this work.  So I made my own spray.  I took a spray bottle (actually it was the one I was using to spray the cat when he did something bad so now I need to get a new one for that purpose, lol) and mixed several shades of Lumiere paint (Jacquard), Pearl Ex (Jacquard), walnut ink crystals (to tone it down when it was a bit too bright) and water.  I couldn’t begin to tell you how much of what colors because I looked like a mad scientist – add a bit of this and a lot of that – until I got it to spray the way I wanted.  Then I layered it onto the canvas.  The first couple of layers I sprayed then wiped with a soft cloth (first one direction then the other, alternating as each layer dried) then started letting some of the droplets remain so it didn’t look so precise.

Then there was the issue of the hearts.  I do have a heart punch somewhere, but only about a 1″ size and I wanted a much bigger one.  So I looked for one.  For a week or two.  In every store within an hour of here.  LSS’s, craft stores – NO ONE had a heart punch in anything over about an inch.  A month before Valentine’s Day.  I was livid, lol!  When I was a distribution buyer, I always made sure we had those in stock well in advance of the holiday so that when the stores began prepping for Valentine’s Day we’d have them ready for them (so I had them in stock back in early December).  Well apparently with the influx of diecutting machines (which I’ve still never broken down and bought), no one carries much in the way of punches anymore – even basics like a heart.  Sooooo, I dug out my old trusty Coluzzle.  Yea, I’m old school, lol!  And proceeded to cut almost 200 hearts out of each sheet out of the Bittersweet pack (I still have a TON of this paper left too – just no full sheets).  Then I used Scribbles to outline the edges of every single heart with a clear glitter to get a subtle sparkle.  I usually don’t spend this kind of time on projects, but this one took several days to complete.

I finished up by tracing one of the 8″ Making Memories chipboard hearts from a couple of years ago (watch for the heart itself to show up as a magnet I made) onto the canvas and began layering the hearts into a heart shape.  I built up layers using Helmar Liquid Scrap Dots.  These are so cool!  I used an entire tube of them on this but just couldn’t stop myself from layering them higher and higher, lol!  They do take some time to dry so I could only do a few layers at a time then would have to stop to allow them to dry so that I didn’t inadvertently flatten them when I pressed on the next layer.  But it was addictive, lol, and I loved watching it take shape as the layers built up!

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New Helmar Project – Bittersweet Bracelet

I have instructions for this bracelet up on the Helmar Adhesives DT blog this morning!  🙂  Come check out the picture of the whole bracelet and find out how to make your own

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And don’t forget the Helmar USA giveaway ends Saturday, January 31,  as well, so make sure you’ve entered here!

Just spread the word about Helmar USA’s fabulous adhesives (seriously, they really are!) and you could get this in the mail to keep you busy!

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Here’s the details on how to get your chance at one of TWO prize packages that will be drawn tomorrow:

Here are the guidelines.  Post a message, photos, links, information, etc. (be creative) on your blogs/message boards/etc. about your excitement for Helmar Adhesives.  Leave a comment attached to this post with a link to your post.  Let us know your favorite products!  How you heard of us, a link to our website (www.helmarusa.com), which product are you most excited to try.  Tell the world we will be at CHA Winter 2009 in Anaheim booth #2260 and have them stop by and see the Helmar Team!  Every individual post counts as an entry so the more posts increases your odds of winning (please leave one comment with a link to your post for each individual post).

Catching up – Love Blocks

Wow.  I keep sitting down to blog and just can’t seem to get it done, lol!  Re-discovered Twittering though, lol, so if you REALLY want to know what’s happening in the oh-so-exciting life of Jenna, you’re welcome to follow me!  I’m michaelcsmommyj on there, since I can’t for the life of me figure out how to put one of those cute little feeds in my sidebar (WordPress has issues with different kinds of code being put on their blogs – apparently the version I tried wasn’t well liked…).  🙂

Meanwhile, I have all kinds of things I need to get caught up on here!  Some projects that I can share (hehe, and some I can’t!), news, several weeks worth of Shout Outs, lol!

So let’s start with a project I made for the Helmar Adhesives DT.  Have I mentioned how much I love their adhesives?  I’m waiting for our DT coordinator to send out new boxes of everything I’ve already run out of, lol!  This started out as just four little unfinished 1.5″ wood blocks (Lara’s Crafts).

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I painted all the edges pink (Making Memories) then trimmed the Basic Grey paper to fit.  I used the Helmar Professional Acid Free Glue to adhere the papers to the wood – this really works well for this purpose and dries fast so you can keep moving right along!  I used the Helmar 450 Quick Dry Adhesive to attach the letters.  The letters are actually old L’il Davis Designs clay letters.  They were originally gold and silver but I dabbed on some of the Making Memories paint then added some glitter (Art Institute Glitter) over the top of the wet paint.

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I spritzed some Prima flowers (using flowers to mimic leaves as well) lightly with Glimmer Mists and attached them and the rhinestone centers (Westrim) with the Helmar 450 Quick Dry Adhesive as well.

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The final step was to use Swarovski beads (Cousin Corp) and Helmar Gemstone Glue to build up the final tower.  It makes a nice little decor item for a tabletop.  🙂

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