Thursday, July 15, 2010

FAB Teacher Gift Idea

I know, I know! It's still summer & YOUR kids are OUT of school!!
But my little one has gone year-round at a little pre-school down the street 
& today is her last day there before she enters Pre-K at the public elementary school! 
WHOA! They grow up so fast!

So, I spent the last 2.5 hours pounding out these great teacher gifts for all the teachers & staff!

It only took me about 3 hours to do 16 candles! (Funny how that worked out, me being a product of the 80's & all!!) 
I had seen these adorable cards in the dollar bin at Michaels & just knew that I wanted to use them for a teacher gift project!  Then I remembered these beautifully decorated candles I saw on the Martha Stewart site, (that & incidentally, my best gal-pal Shirley made similar one's for my 40th b-day party decor!) & bingo! I had a quick & easy idea ready to roll!!

Here's my list of supplies:
  1. 16 candles from Walmart. You will find these with all the other candles, but in the aisle with the religious candles. They were only $1.30 each!
  2. 2 sheets 12x12 white textured cardstock, such as Bazzill
  3. 2 sheets from a child's writing tablet found at the Dollar Tree (you could also use other school themed papers or even ledger paper!)
  4. Glimmer Mist in assorted, coord. colors. (I used 1 on the white paper & a combo on the tablet paper)
  5. 8 Cards from Michaels with Apples on them or simply use a stamp & 
  6. some craft colored cardstock!
  7. Good, strong adhesive - I am addicted to my ATG gun, but I did have to use a smaller tape runner on the little apple squares
  8. A ruler, paper tearing tool, trimmer & Distress Ink.
The first thing I did was Glimmer Mist all the papers & let them dry. (You can speed up the process w/a heat gun, by kitchen was already 80 degrees today!!)
Because I wanted a soft yellow & didn't have any, I used a pretty "Sunflower" yellow to change the white paper; the ledger got a combo of "Tattered Leather & Mustard Seed." 
While the papers were drying, I cut the apples from the cards...
Because I wanted to re-purpose the other parts of the cards (the odd looking craft colored pc on the top left is the leftovers!), I trimmed as close to the apple cutouts & prints as possible. I then adhered them together (a large Xyron would have been great for this part!); I also had to trim up the edges a little inking them with walnut stain (a staple around here!). I set those aside for later.

Once the papers were dry, I measured the cirumfrance of the candle - approx. 7.25 & cut my papers to that length.  I then decided to tear the edges of the yellow background paper, but I needed to figure out the width first - easy peesy - use the finished apple squares that were approx. 2.25 inches & decide what you want the band to be like! I decided that I wanted mine to be a tad smaller than the apples, but with the tearing, they turned out about the same!! LOL! And I'm fine with that!

Next, I trimmed the tablet papers to 1" strips.
(You can't really tell here, but the table paper has this nice green/gold tint to it from the "Mustard Seed" mist! Looks great w/the yellow & the reds in the apples & the candle!!)

After that, it was just a matter of putting it all together! I ran my adhesive gun down lengthwise on the torn edges of the yellow first, applied it to the candle as straight around as possible - didn't need to worry about overlap too much since the apple square would go over the seams. Then, I did the same with the tablet paper strips.  (I did try to adhere the strips together first & then to the candle, but I got some buckling.) I continued doing all of the yellow & tablet strips on the candles first since the squares took a little more glue & placement.

Once all of those were done, I applied tons of my tape to the apple squares (so the edges that curved around the candle don't lift too badly) & placed them over the seams. Viola! All done & ready to take to school this afternoon!!

You'll notice that some of them are centered lengthwise & some not - the silly manufacturer put the price label ON THE SIDE on some of the candles!!! So, in the interest of time (& frustration!) I decided not to remove them before hand & simple just staggered the placement on the each one a little. This would have really driven me bonkers if all the candles were in the same room at the same time, but since everyone was only getting one candle each, I didn't think it mattered as much!!

I hope you enjoyed my little tutorial - it's the first one I've ever done! So, let me know what you thought ok?? Maybe I'll do more!!


Monday, July 12, 2010

New Blog Design!

Please bare with me as I re-design a few things on here! Things might be a little squished or out of place right now as I play with a few things!
I am trying my hand at creating my own banners & such using some great digi elements from Summertime Designs.
I kind of like the new look, but not sure I'll keep it this dark...what do you think? 
I would love to hear from you!
After I get this blog squared away, I am planning on tackling the Scrap-a-Teeny Girls blog! We need something fresh there too!
Thanks for looking!

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Redo? Hopefully re-DONE!!

I am starting to wonder what I was thinking when I agreed to make my future sister-in-law's wedding jewelry! Not that she's been a pain. It's more that the long-distance designing has been a pain! I think that if she were right here with me, we would have knocked this thing out in a week!!

But as things stand, it's taken over a month of re-do's & countless amounts of supplies (not to mention $$!). I don't know that she fully understood that I would go through tons of head & eyepins to re-do each little change she requests. It's probably my fault for not mentioning this to her, but I wanted to do this as my shower gift to her & not ask for money! Everyone keeps telling me to either tell her I need some dough or say, "this is what you're getting" & I just can't do that! I want her to get the necklace she's envisioning - it's her day & hopefully the only one she'll ever have!!

Anyway, after the last post, we tweeked it a little more (2x) & this is what I've finally come up with...I made the cluster smaller & moved it down a bit so it looked more like one with the larger crystal. She also wanted the inner necklace to have more of a dangle, so I re-did that too.

Because she's a little concerned that the cluster will be too busy for her dress, I made it removable with some small jump rings & also sent her a photo without the cluster...
Personally, I like it with the cluster as it adds a little interest to the drop, & ties in the inner necklace better. We'll see what the bride thinks though.

Next, I offered her two earring options:
These are similar to a photo she sent me. I am not crazy about the larger pearl (on the left) & will probably swap it out with a smaller one & maybe change the bi-cone crystals with round ones. But I'll wait to see if this is the design she wants. It looks nice with the necklace (the simple necklace here, but works with the clustered one too), but I like the other earring sample better...

This one uses the matching drop-crystal with only 3 beads in a cluster. I think this ties in much nicer with the necklace (if we include the drop). She has a very narrow face & long neck, so she wants more of a "lean" look & will probably go with the first one.

It's definitely been a learning experience! I think that from now on, I will just say no to these types of requests & make the finished product for Etsy! LOL!!! I will breath a big sigh of relief when it's off in the mail to her & an even bigger one when she's wearing it down the aisle!!

I'll keep ya posted as to her choices!