Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Defeating Crafty ADD

It has been one of those weeks.  We lost a sweet family member and now another is far away and in critical condition in the hospital.  All of our heads are just spinning.  I made it home for one funeral and now am waiting on healing for another.  I am need of some serious healing and focus at this moment.  So I craft.

Isn't this cross stitch from andwabisabi adorable?  I might need to make it.

I'm pretty sure we have all had moments when we have sat down to craft, but our brains are all over the place.  Not the best recipe for creating something you love.  It can be done, however, with a bit of refocusing.

I want to give you some ideas (and refocus myself) on how to make the most of your crafting time.

Idea #1:  Make your space work for you.

My crafting space can either help or hinder me when I want to create.  I am a neat freak.  I own it.  I just can't focus when things are messy.  For me, it is important to keep things put away when I am done using them.  Now I am NOT a keep things completely hidden away kind of girl, but I do like my displays to be intentional and as neat as possible.

Idea #2:  Decide what you want to do.

What kind of things do you want to create?  What kind of holidays are coming up that might need a card or a decoration?   Getting things gathered and having an overall goal for the month can help keep some momentum in your crafting.

My September To Do List:
~Cards:  Uncle G., Amy, mom
~Holiday:  Halloween decorations for the mantel; cards for nieces and nephews
                  Christmas:  Notecards for Isabel's teacher
~One month finished scrapping (project life and layouts)

**I try to work a BIT ahead and have a general idea of what I want to make farther, out, but putting them on this list would just feel overwhelming, so I only add a reasonable amount that can be finished.

Idea #3: Get stuff ready

It is no surprise that I am going to tell you that you should make your own kits out of your supplies.  LOL  I am the Counterfeiting Original.  Take a look at the list of things you want to do and start pulling what you need to get it done.  When you only have a few minutes you will have half the battle done and will be able to make progress throughout the month.

For my list this translates into:
1.  Making some kits for cards
2.  Pulling anything I might want to use for Halloween decor and cards
3.  Putting together a "box" of project life supplies for the month.

For my cards, I know I need something general for a man, a birthday card and something geared towards my mom.  I looked through my box of pre made cards to see if I have anything that will work.  I actually found two that will be perfect (sometimes I make cards for fun based on challenges or sketches.  If I don't have a recipient in mind then I store them for later).

I was excited to dig around for my Halloween Decorations (although I suspect I will also dig into my regular stash of paper when the time comes to create).  I also made sure my Silhouette files were sorted so I could easily find my Halloween digital purchases.

I then had the almost daunting task of pulling some stuff to make my Project Life easier.  I flipped through my photos to see the theme and then pulled some cards, embellishments and stamps that seemed to fit.  I will probably pull more stuff, but this at least gets me started.

And because I can't help myself, I went ahead and put together a kit from CSI's Casefile No. 137.

Idea #4:  Get rid of distractions.

What is it that holds you up when you sit down to create something?  My biggest issue is my computer.  I get SO distracted since I also work from my office and often end up doing "just one more thing" before I get started.  My new goal is to shut it all down, so I can create uninterrupted.  Let's see how that works.  LOL

What is distracting to you?

It was good for me to write this all out and have a plan going forward.

Monday, September 1, 2014

Back to "School" for mom!

**Be sure to check out the awesome birthday party that used these props!

August was swept away with back to school shopping, an unexpected trip back home to say goodbye to my Aunt, another trip home for her funeral lead to an over stressed and now sick heap for the last few weeks.  I am on the mend, although my heart is still sad, and ready to get back into some sort of crafting groove.

What better way to get some crafting on then Paper Trey Ink's Stamp-A-Faire?  I am coming at it a bit late for entering anything, but at this point, I just need a jump start of Mojo and am happy that there are so many entries to help inspire me.  Plus the pressure is off to get these done in any sort of time frame.  (I am typing this as I 12:40 in the afternoon.  I am determined to have one day where I don't feel the need to lie down.  That probably means I will want to go to bed around 7:00, though.  LOL)

I am starting with their Timer Challenge (since I am OCD about doing things in order).

First up is to pick one of their color schemes:


I love the soft pallet of this one, although I am going to let some of my pinks punch it up a bit.  I am DETERMINED to use up some of my 6x6 pads.  Seriously.  I collect those stinkin' things, but use them up?  LOL

I pulled my papers (I will show you in a minute) and checked which sketch I wanted to use before I pulled some embellishments.


**I am ignoring the instructions for my first card and just going off the sketch.  LOL  I am living dangerously, except now I feel the need to pull more stuff and do a second card following the directions.  I have a problem.

I started with a great sheet of blue paper with roses in different shades of pink.  It hit the entire color scheme in one sheet of paper.  I added an additional plain blue paper, a light pink pattern and a tone on tone white/cream pattern.  I love my enamel dots, so I had to add those and some labels.

I thought the flowered paper would be fun for the focal point, but it was too busy for any sort of sentiment.  A die cut with a sentiment on it solved that problem nicely.  A bit of layering and this card came together very quickly (well under the 20 minute goal...more like 7 minutes).

Alright!  I completed something!  Now to get it into the mail instead of putting it in a box to sit for a year.  We make cards for a purpose, right?

Thursday, July 31, 2014

I am in LOVE with August's Counterfeit Kit!

That might sort of...kind of...maybe be why I picked it!  Sometimes being the "boss" has it's perks!  I will admit that normally I am not a Studio Calico girl.  Sure, I generally like some of the elements of the kits, but the hype and exclusive vibe put me I don't like paying high way robbery to get a stamp I love just because it has their name on it.

But this kit.  This kit was worth bending some preferences for, don't you think?

Unlike last month, my kit came together beautifully.  And in multiples, because I couldn't stop at just one.  I can't wait to share them with you!

Penny Arcade...the very name makes me think of old timey carnivals and fair rides.  I love the colors in this kit!  They are a nice mix of NOT traditional jewel tones.  Just off the color wheel enough to make it interesting.

I found some great papers from Echo Park, Dear Lizzy, October Afternoon and *uhem* Studio Calico to make up my kit.

I even threw in a Fair themed stamp to get me going! Love it!

The one thing I was missing was that silver doily.  It might seem silly, but I became a bit obsessed about that doily and even tried cheating a bit and went to buy one.  Not a silver doily to be found in my city!  HUMP!  Luckily, sweet Master Forger Lisa saw my dilemma and sent me some happy mail!  Look at those beautiful doily's and stars!!!  My heart is happy!  The doily's will be living happily in my kit...although I have an idea for them already...

Next up is the add on Skeeball (which, by the way, is a game I am VERY good at).  I tried to not get hung up on the lovely start burst paper that I have nothing like and went with a nice yellow sun pattern instead.  I am looking forward to using that one.

My last Add On kit to Counterfeit is Fortune Teller.  I love the colors in this one, too.

I have never used Bokeh paper before...I hope I can do it justice!  I threw in some awesome stamps this month, too!  I can't wait to play with them!  I did not do a lot of counterfeiting with my kits, but I did use my Silhouette quite a bit to make some great cuts.  It is about time I put it to good use.  

Here is the Hop List so you know where to go...I sure hope Jemma had something nice to say about me...if you missed her blog post, go back and check for me, okay?

Guest Designer:  Sherri:
Bethany:   <<<
That means the lovely LESLIE is up next so scootch on over there and be impressed!

After that you can head over to the Counterfeit Kit Challenge Blog to see what else we are up to and how YOU can play along this month.  Lots of changes going on over there!  We are upgrading for you!

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Rockin' it this month! Challenge #3: Panel Card

I do not remember the last time I had this much time to just create!  I let my kids and DH hit the yard to do yard work and fix the pool and did not feel guilty one little bit.

Challenge #3 was different for me.  I love the idea of making a panel card, but my dislike of my kit this month was making it hard for me to pull one together that I liked.  Here is my first attempt:

I really like the speckled blue paper and it made me think of sky...which led to the hot air balloons...but the orange background?  Eh.  And I didn't have any paper that I wanted to mat the mini card with, so I used vellum.  It was okay, but didn't pop at all.  I decided to give it another go with some chalkboard paper I have been hoarding.  Immediately my Dapper Dan Glitz stamps came to mind.  I love the mustache and bow tie, but never had an idea of what to use them for...until now...

I'm glad I gave it another try.  I really like this second card.

What do you think about Panel Cards?  I hope I get to see one of yours at the Counterfeit Kit Challenge Blog.  I could use some more inspiration.

Saturday, July 12, 2014

Technique Crazy! Counterfeit Kit Challenge #2

Our next Counterfeit Kit Challenge for this month is deceptively hard.  At least for someone who is OCD (raising my hand).  I woke up early this morning **thanks so much neighborhood firework rule breakers for setting them off HOURS after the curfew** and thought I would jump right into this challenge with a card.  Easy Peasy, right?  NOT!  My Easy Peasy card took me 2 hours.  Yep.  2 hours.  I am just that awesome as I am trying to figure out a new to me technique.

Challenge:  Combine Techniques:  Use at least 3 techniques on your project

I do have to say that normally my brain is full, so I like to lean on sketches a bit too much, but focusing on the techniques developed into a completely Bethany Original card that I love.

I'll walk you through my process, but feel free to skip down and just look at the card.  I will never know.  LOL  I highlighted my Techniques.

#1:  Picked a focal piece of paper (hearts) and layered it on yellow and black
#2:  Cut out a heart layered shape on a piece of white card stock
#3:  Cut the negative space and layer it on the heart paper, off setting it a bit so it goes off the card
#4:  Use Gloss Medium Gel and paint it thickly over a stencil that says Hello on the bottom of the negative heart space..let it dry
#5  Spray Mist over the negative space card and wipe off the mist from the HELLO...glue it to the right side of the card
#6  Take the inside heart and stamp a background on it
#7  Leave the outer layered heart white and glue it into the negative the stamped heart in last negative space
#8  Stamp a shape to layer over the heart (I picked an owl that I paper pieced)
#9  Stamp another heart to layer over the owl
#10  Use washi tape to make a pleated "ribbon" and attach to the side of the card
#11  Attatch a button with twin to the pleated "ribbon"
#12  Add some enamel dots around the edge of the heart

Gel Medium is completely new to me.  I have seen a form of it on different blogs, but could not find the product they used.  I did find (at Hobby Lobby) Liquitex Basics Gloss Gel Medium and am happy to find it works well.  You can use it as is or mix it with some paint to color it.  It dried quickly and was pretty easy to use.  I know I will have fun using it on more projects to add some texture and interest.

I was pretty happy to have pulled out my washi and used it in a bit of a different way.

So, overall I am happy with how my challenge came out.  It took some time, but it came together really quickly and easily.

Make a challenge project of your own and don't forget to:
1.  Link it to Mr. Linky
2.  Save it for our end of the month blog hop and e-mail us at to let us know you want to participate at the end of the month!

Friday, July 4, 2014

Once again I have Challenged myself...Counterfeit Kit Challenge: Triangles

So, do you ever wonder how I pick the challenges for the Counterfeit Kit Challenge?  I have all of my favorite blog stops on my Blog Lovin' feed and go through them every few days.  Any blog post that makes me pause or inspires me I "like" so it will save it for me.  Those are what inspire our challenges.  I try to not pick anything that looks too easy for me.  In fact, I usually pick things that I really don't like to do or am not good at.  LOL  I am a glutton for punishment!

Triangles.  UGH!  Love banners, but ask me to use a triangle (other than a visual one) another way and I am stuck...stuck...stuck!  So here we go!  Starting with a sketch is a MUST for this one!

I LOVE this photo of Isabel and Billy.  They are such good buddies and have so much fun together.  I feel a bit left out, I must admit, from time to time when we go places just the three of us.  Often I start off with them and then end up hanging back and taking some photos.  Usually Isabel runs and gets me, though, so she can hold BOTH of our hands.  I love my sweet girl and I love that she has such a good relationship with her daddy.  I definitely needed the sketch above to pull off this triangle challenge.

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Grading my July Counterfeit Kit

It is the first of the month and that means a brand new Counterfeit Kit!  This has been a busy month.  School is out and the kids are home which is always fun.  I happen to have some pretty great kids.  We have had a great time fishing, swimming, going to some fun library programs and just having fun together.   Near the end of June it dawned on me that I did not put together my July kit.  YIKES!  LOL  I had barely thought of scrapping for the month of June.  I decided to not be frustrated about my lack of time and just put it out of my head instead.  Time to get cracking!

This month we are getting some inspiration from Noel Mingnon's Balboa Kit.  It has a lot of fun colors and some great embellishments.

Balboa Kit

With my last minutes pulls and a raging headache, I'm afraid I ended up with a kit that I hope will grow on me.  LOL  I have a feeling that I am not the only one who has done that before.  Since my head was spinning I decided my best bet was to write down my first impressions and just focus on those.

Here is my list:
Teal, red, orange, green, chalkboard
stripes, dots, frames
washi, labels, chipboard, tags

Then I clicked off of the photo and just focused on pulling things that fit my list.  My kit has some papers in it that are not my favorite (they came in collection packs).  My first impulse was to pull some specific papers from Echo Park, but I REALLY love them and am not ready to use them yet...LOL...dumb, huh?  Maybe the papers will grow on me.  Because I still have May and June's kits, I decided to just go with it.

If I had to give myself a grade, I would probably give myself a C.  I like some of the pieces of the kit, but all together?  I'm just not feeling it.  BUT I am going to keep it together and try to use it.  Why?  Because we all have days like this and it is JUST PAPER!  LOL  

I have a feeling I will be in love with more than one of the Master Forger's kits.  Maybe they will swap me?  LOL

Here is the list, so you can see some A+ kits:

Order of the Hop:
Guest Designer:  Jane

Make sure you look at how YOU can play along on the CKC blog!  We would love to have you join us this month!

Friday, June 13, 2014

Finally pulled one out!

I have despaired the last few weeks of doing ANYTHING with my June kits.  I pulled something in my back, so sitting for much time at all has been a pain.  Literally.  LOL  It is still hurting, but I was able to put together one layout today.  Typing up this post is killing my back again, so I will keep this brief.

My girl is VERY into rainbow loom.  I snapped a few photos of her hard at work on her creations when it struck me that I used to be the same way with my potholder loom.  I remember making so many of them.  My poor grandma had a drawer full.  LOL  I think people may have ran when they saw me coming.  I thought it was a fun connection and wanted to document it.  I pulled out my June kit and snuck in some extra enamel dots.  Shhhh...don't tell!

Jennifer Grace had a great sketch on her blog for her event last weekend.  I was not able to participate because of my back, but was happy to be able to go to her sketch for some faster scrappy results!

Now to go sit with a heating pad.  LOL  At least I can get some of my cross stitch caught up!  Can't have me just lazing around not being creative!  Hmmm...another idea for a layout?

Sunday, June 1, 2014

I'm in love with my June Counterfeit Kits!

Did you see it?  The "s" on the end of Kit in my title?  Yep.  I made TWO kits this month because, well, I just couldn't pick.  Which is the same reason we have a choice of kits to counterfeit in the first place.  LOL  They both had a similar feel to me and are a great jump off from our Wonderful World Of Color NSD Event from last month.  (Seriously proud of my fabulous team for pulling that off so well.)

So let's jump right into checking out the kits for this month!

Scrapbook Circle Shop has a great kit for May:  High Five!

I threw caution to the wind and decided to not be so literal with my interpretation (I wasted a whole day trying to recreate that circle paper...epic fail).  Instead I just started pulling some fun, colorful paper and embellishments and let that direct me.

Next up is the Summer School Workshop Kit from Clique Kits!  What a fun concept and what a great kit!

More random paper pulls!  I loved just digging in and picking papers I liked.  My embellishment hunt led to some fox stamps (by Close to My heart), so I will have a great time with that direction!

I pulled some great colorful embellishments (dots, mists, sequins) that will work well with either kit as well.  I am eager to try out some gloss gel medium (like a stencil paste) as well this month.

My office looks like Rainbow Bright has been visiting me.  LOL

I am really excited to see what kits the design team has put together for this month.  Angela is up next with a super kit to share with you!


Now, how can YOU participate?  Go to the sidebar and use Mr. LINKY to link us to YOUR kit or project using your kit so we can leave you some love!  We will make a brand new Mr. Linky for each month, so get your blog posts linked ASAP!

To make Mr. Linky a little easier for us to use, please type your name and then a description of what you are linking (ie: kit, mini challenge, ect).

We also have a Flicker group, if you don't have a blog, but would like to share your creativity with us!  CKC Blog Flicker Group

We also have a new twist on our Follower Blog Hop for this year!  I hope you like it!

End of the Month Blog Hop:
On the 24th of each month we offer a blog hop opportunity to all of our followers!  A chance for you to show off a special project made with your counterfeit kit for that month.

Here is how it will work:
Your Blog Hop Project may be from any of the 3 challenges we offer throughout the month.
Your project must be something new that you have not shown before and only post for the hop.

To be a part of our blog hop:
1.  E-mail us your name/blog address/promise to participate at  BY THE 18th!  (No late requests will be able to join this time due to the work it takes for us to get it put together.)

2.  You will receive  an e-mail from us by the 20th with a list of the hop participants.

3.  You will need to schedule your own blog post showing your project based on this challenge and links to the person after you in the hop.

4.  All Blog Hop posts will need to be scheduled to go live on the 24th at 12:00 A.M. Mountain Standard Time (Arizona)

Friday, May 16, 2014

Happy Mail

happy mail

Send a card.  Today.

As crafters, we love to create beautiful things.  We make cards by the dozens.  When is the last time you mailed one out?  I have a box full that I made because it was fun.  It is time to start putting them to good use.  Today I am mailing some cards to several people I barely know because I know it will brighten their day.

Let's send some happy mail, friends!

Thursday, May 15, 2014

My creativity has a cold


It is amazing how being sick can drain all of the creativity from your body.  I finished up with work early this week so I could have some time to play...and promptly got a cold.  LOL  Between the medications and symptoms and lovely asthma issues (thanks to both the cold and the constant rain), my brain just will not work. 

I am still trying my best and sitting in my now cleaned up studio (I could think enough to get that done) with some soup and a hot apple cider (my go to sick drink).  Yawn.  LOL  I would nap, but my brain will not let me sleep unless it is night time, so I know I will just lie there and stare at the ceiling.

I find myself mindlessly browsing for scrapbook supplies online.  Not good!  Let's see what Blog lovin' has right now to inspire me.

I love this sketch by Sam Simpson on Cas(e) this Sketch.  It looks simple enough that some stamping alone should just about do it for me.  Not much strenuous thinking required, which is perfect for today.  I happen to have someone who could use a nice pick me up card right now, so this will be perfect.

I pulled out a great Paper Trey Ink set (Up, Up and Away) and did a bit of stamping/coloring.  I like the results.  I could add a lot more to it to make it really a WOW card, but I think it is sweet the way it is.  In fact, I might be making a few of these to send out today.  

I also, in my mindless wandering, stumbled across an I-Phone app that might be just what I am looking for to track my supplies.  I cannot tell you how many times I have been at a store (with a coupon) and thought I should get a new Copic, or some Mists, but do not remember what colors I still need, so I put it back.  I have a great memory for stamps/paper, but some of my coloring things always escape me.

I'm going to go crash in bed and try out this app.  I"ll let you know what I think!

Thursday, May 8, 2014

A little sketchy fun!

Scrap 365 has a wonderful sketch up on their site for May.  I love the simplicity of it and have JUST the right photo I want to use.

I rotated the sketch and found a photo of Isabel and her snowman for this year.  Her favorite movie right now happens to be Frozen, so the direction I wanted to take was obvious.  My favorite bit is the cloud raining down dots and hearts.

Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Introducing May's Counterfeit Kit!

We are jumping into May with a wonderful kit by Paper Camellia.  Since there is a Main Kit, Add on and a Pocket Page kit for May, I decided to go a little bold and make a 12x12 kit based on the Pocket Page Kit.

HERE is the kit that inspired me this month:

I also decided to do something a bit different (for me) and take a quick inventory of the kit and then not look at it again while I make my own kit.  I made a list of the things that struck me in the kit, so I could free style it a bit.  Crazy?  I hope so!

My notes:

Colors:  Blue, Orange, Pink, Green, Yellow, Black
Embellishments:  Cork, wood, metal
Shapes:  Stars, Globes, Cameras, Words
Theme:  Travel/Adventure

 Now comes the brave part.  I got out the box.  Don't YOU have a box?  A box of special papers that you are hoarding and don't want to ever use?  Yes.  I got out that box.  My special box is full of October Afternoon.  You know that October Afternoon is hard to come by around here.  My friend Pam has sent me some and I was able to snag one of their boxes this past Thanksgiving.  I tried pulling other papers for my kit, but knew that the perfect papers were in that box.

See that Map paper right there on top?  Sigh.  I love that paper.  Most of what I picked is October Afternoon with a bit of Crate Paper thrown in to round it out.  I LOVE the colors and it came together pretty quickly with no patterns to try to match up.  

So here is my complete kit I like to call Oh, the Places I'll Go.

Next on our hop is our Guest Designer, Laura.  You are in for a treat so head over there next!

If you get a bit lost on our hop, here is the list to keep you going:

Lisa H.

Don't forget to check back in at the Counterfeit Kit Challenge for a special two day Event for National Scrapbook Day!

Make sure you stop back by The Counterfeit Kit Challenge Blog to see how you can participate this month in our challenges and end of the month blog hop!