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Archive for the ‘papercutting’ Category

Over at Show Tell Share, there’s a challenge for February:  STASH!  The challenge is to “…use materials from your overflowing stash of stuff. …. So go ‘shop the house!’ Create something beautiful out of what you have laying around!

“You may have to go buy just a little something, button, zipper, etc. to complete a project, but extra points it you can pull it of without buying anything.

“And you don’t have to stop with one, see how much of your stash you can put to good use! You can make something completely from start to finish, or see how many of those half finished projects you can complete and show off! Then at the end of the month, you’ll have so much extra room in your craft room/closet/bins.”

This sounded like a great challenge to participate in – not only am I saving money by not buying new craft supplies, but I’m using what is on hand and creating space.  Below are some things I have made so far this month.

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I had a couple of maps that I didn’t need – one from Brazil and another from Spain.  The one from Brazil is written in Portuguese and was purchased there about a decade ago.  The other map is from a National Geographic magazine. What I like about the latter map is that there are short explanations about the significance of some of the cities or towns on the map. 

With the Brazilian map, I made folded flowers that I glued onto 5 inch by 7 inch greeting cards. 

Flower made from a Brazilian map and green copy paper

Open flower where a message can be written

The matching envelopes have a floral image from the map to tie the greeting card and evelope together.

Greeting cards and envelopes made from the Brazilian map

With the map of Spain, I made two type of miniature cards (they are 3 inches x 3 inches).  The cards themselves are made from sheets of 12 inch x 12 inch scrapbooking paper.  For some of the cards that had an interesting fact, I left the cards plain. 

Miniature greeting and thank you cards

With the cards that didn’t have a fact, I placed a hand-stamped “thank you” flower in the center.  It is affixed to the card with a 3D double-sided foam piece.

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I had quite a few vintage children’s books on hands that the girls were done reading.  They had cleaned their bookshelves about a month ago and removed all the books they no longer wanted.  Before donating them to the local thrift shop, I pulled any vintage books that could be used in crafting. 

After removing the pages that had pictures, I traced an envelope template onto each page.  I cut each one out by hand; and then folded and glued it.  I pressed the envelopes under a couple of heavy books to flatten them.

Variety of handmade envelopes from vintage children’s books

With some of the books, the pages are a bit small for standard-size envelopes, so I made gift bags with the pages.  Again, I use pages with pictures for the bags.  After removing the pages from the books, I pair pages together and then trim them so the edges match.  The edges are cut with pinking shears.  The edges are sewn on the sewing machine.

Handmade Bags with Vintage Children's Books
Gift bags made from vintage children’s books

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I have a lot of scrapbooking paper and notebooks that are taking up shelf space.  An idea to use both of these were to make letterettes.  I received a set of letterettes from someone on Swap-Bot awhile back.  I thought it was such a clever idea.  She used a heavier decorative paper (almost like a cardstock) for the exterior.  Since I didn’t have patterned cardstock on hand, I used a lighter-weight decorative paper.

Letterettes

The patterned paper is 12 inches by 12 inches.  I cut the paper into two pieces – one that was 5 inches wide and the other was 7 inches wide.  The length is 12 inches.

The inside of each letterette has 5 sheets of notebook paper that were cut into smaller sizes:
– Smaller letterette:  4 7/10″ x 7 3/4″
– Larger letterette: 6 7/10″ x 5 7/10″

Letterettes – with one open to show where it is sewed

Once cut, they pages were folded in half and placed in the folded patterned paper.  I sewed on the sewing machine along the folded line in the notebook paper, making sure to reverse sew along each of the edges so the stitching wouldn’t come out.  After trimming the thread, the letterettes are ready to use.

After writing a letter on the notebook pages, simply seal the letterette with a glue stick or decorative tape, put two labels on the outside – for the return and sending addresses – and it’s ready to be mailed.   

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I had a gift box that had a nice pattern on it, but I am now using fabric bags to wrap gifts.  So, instead of recycling it I used my tag punch and paper punch with a tiny hole to create tags.  Using a thicker embroidery floss, I cut and attached hangers so they can be used for gifts or for price tags for products. 

Tags made from a decorative box

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I had a few pages from the vintage children’s books leftover as well as some notebook paper.  So, I made some made stationery gluing a sheet of notebook paper on top of a page from the children’s book.  I had debated about painting over the image that’s under the notebook paper, but I thought that it was nice to be able to see the design of that page of the children’s book as well as the image on the backside of the stationery.
Stationery with notebook paper and a page from a children’s book

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My next focus:  using the fabric and felt that I have on hand.  I have quite a few patterns that I’ve wanted to try that use these materials. So, during the next couple of weeks I’ll start using sewing or embroidering using felt and fabric.  I’ll do another post at the end of the month with what I’ve made.

  

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Each year, the girls look forward to decorating the home for Valentine’s Day.  Last year, I made a variety of window stars that I put on the windows.  After the holiday, I packed them away to use again this year. 

It was so easy this year to decorate the main window in the dining room.  Here’s what it looks like:

As the girls and I looked through the bin of Valentine’s Day decor, we came across the paper cuttings I did last year for each of them.  One chose red paper as the backing and the other chose pink.  We hung the paper cuttings with a couple more window stars in the living room.

Since I just put out the winter nature table scene on the dresser in the dining room about a week ago, the girls and I decided to keep it up.  So this will stay up for a little while longer (perhaps right after Valentine’s Day it will be changed to another scene).

Winter Nature Table
Since we decided to keep the winter nature table where it was, Olivia suggested putting a Valentine’s scene on the bookshelf.  The table is more craft focused rather than nature focused since the winter nature table has the nature elements (e.g., rocks, sticks, pinecone, walnut shell beeswax candles). 

Valentine’s Day Items

The display on the bookcase has hand-embroidered gnomes made from wool felt and sheep wool stuffing from sheep who use to live here.  The elf clogs are hand-embroidered and made from wool felt as well.  I made a pair for each of the girls using their favorite colors.  The wet-on-wet watercolor lanterns are made from watercolor paper, kite paper, and tissue paper.  The girls made them a few years ago.  The two cards are handmade featuring origami designs made from Japanese paper. 

The picture is of Casey who died 3 years ago on the day before Valentine’s Day.  An artist painted the picture in exchange for some of my work.  It’s been a treasured picture…and one that has been the focal point of several displays.

I like to make a few new things each year, so this is a new window star I made.  It follows a base pattern that I use for another star, but I changed things up a bit to create a new pattern.  Here it is:

I also made a couple of miniature bears from a wool sweater that I felted in the washer/dryer.  The bears are holding a paper bunting with Valentine’s Day theme paper.  The bears are available in my shop, but I’m going to make another set so the girls have something else to decorate with in future years. 

Bears (made with a felted sweater) holding a bunting

The other item I just started making are bendy dolls with wire, beads, and wool felt.  I use a length of wire and two different size beads to create a miniature human form.  The clothes are hand-embroidered onto the wire frame.  The hat needed to be hot-glued onto the bead head in order to stay…otherwise it just slips right off.

I’m doing some for my shop as well as some for home.  The girls like them because they can bend and be posed in different ways.  Here is the trio of dolls that I made this weekend:

There are still a couple of weeks until February and some more things the girls and I want to do before then that relate to the holiday….more crafts, recipes to try, and activities to do.  Next week, I’ll post some more Valentine’s Day ideas.
Family room window with winter-white stars

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Dining Room Window
Originally uploaded by Pictures by Ann

Today we made paper snowflakes. Some we hung up as plain white snowflakes. For other ones, we put translucent paper behind them (the same kind of paper that I use to make my window stars).

This white snowflakes in this picture have different designs at the end of the snowflakes – roses, giraffes, trees, birds, and more. The green and red stars are made from a translucent paper.

The girls tried to make some of the more complicated snowflakes, but it was difficult to cut through so many layers of paper.  So, instead, they made circular snowflakes by tracing around a bowl and then folding the paper.  Here is the window with some of the snowflakes they made:

In addition to making the window stars, we also went to Minnesota Orchestra’s performance of “Sleigh Rides.”  It was a wonderful concert!

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This is the seventh day of the “Art Every Day Month” challenge. I made four greeting cards with various Sunbonnet Sue patterns.

Sunbonnet Sue is an old applique pattern used in quilting. After doing the much simpler paper-collage version of this pattern, I have a great appreciation for the level of work that went into the handmade quilts using this pattern.

This pattern has 8 pieces using 4 different colors/patterns of paper. The lines on the apron and the bluebird’s features are hand-drawn with a black pen.

The paper for the apron and bow came from the front of a greeting card that I received that I thought was pretty. I like when I can reuse items and incorporate them into crafting.

I made some more greeting cards – another one with the same pattern as the pink Sunbonnet Sue; and then two others cards with different patterns.

The pattern with the bluebird is my favorite one. Two of the cards I sent to someone on Swap-Bot, and two of the cards I kept. 

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Squirrel Papercuts
Originally uploaded by Pictures by Ann

I made these Valentine’s Day theme papercuts for my daughters – the red one is for Olivia and the pink one is for Sophia.

There’s a free pattern (see below) that I printed onto white copy paper and cut it out. Then, I traced around the openings onto another sheet of white copy paper and cut it out using a sharp scissors.

Glued translucent paper onto the back (red on one heart and pink on the other) – the same kind that I use for my window stars. Tissue paper also could be used.

Here’s the link to the free pattern: PATTERN.

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