Craftaholics Anonymous Handmade Gift Exchange

Twice a year Linda at Craftaholics Anonymous hosts a Handmade Gift Exchange. This is so much fun! If you’ve never participated in one of these, I highly recommend giving it a whirl. I wanted to show you what I made for my partner Lauren, and what she made for me.

Here’s what I sent Lauren:

First I made her some of the Christmas gift tags we did for the Ladies Craft Meeting at church a few months ago.

I also made her up a set of one of a kind cards like these.

I made her up a set of cute pillow boxes. Tutorial here.

And I sent a few pieces of handmade jewelry.

A pair of coiled bracelets. Tutorial here.

A pair of silver wire wrapped earrings. “Tutorial” here.

 

I had a lot of fun making the earring card for these.

These dropped bead earrings, tutorial to come.

And I sent her a 12 x 12 pillow cover featuring the title of my favorite Christmas song.

I really hope she loved everything!

And she sent me this AH-MAY-ZING Christmas wreath!

Isn’t it gorgeous?

I just love these colors! In fact, I have a Red and Aqua Board on Pinterest, and this beauty is going straight there as soon as this post goes live!

Thank you, Lauren – I love it!

And thank you, Linda, for hosting this awesome exchange again!

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WRMK Envelope Punch Board

Today I want to talk about one of my favorite craft tools: The We R Memory Keepers Envelope Punch Board.

I got this punch board back in June, but it had been on my wish list since last summer. It has been so much fun! We used 3 of these at the Teachers of Good Things Craft Day last weekend, and several ladies mentioned that they had plans to get one for themselves. In fact, my mom has plans to pick one up at the first opportunity.

While the Envelope Punch Board may look complicated, it’s actually super easy to use, and I wanted to do a quick tutorial. First of all, the measurements you need for just about any size envelope are printed right on the board. It also comes with a sticker with the metric version of the measurements so you can adhere that on top of the standard measurements if you prefer.

It tells you the correct paper size for the card you’re using, and it gives you a measurement mark to place the edge of your paper on for scoring. You can make envelopes from paper sized up to 11.5 x 11.5 inches. These for are for 4.5 x 6 inch cards, and I just squared off some 8.5 x 11 scrapbook paper for this size.

For the Craft Day, as well as for some note card sets I’ve made as gifts, I used 6 x 6 paper to make envelopes for 3 x 4 cards.

Today I’m going to make a 3 x 4 envelope using this sweet 6 x 6 paper I picked up at Tuesday Morning. 
To make this size, you will take your 6 x 6 sheet and line it up at the 2 5/8 mark.

Once it’s lined up, push down on the button at the top to punch your first notch. It’s important to note and remember that this is the only time during this process that you will line your paper up with this mark.

Then take the handy score tool included with the punch board and score the paper down the score track.

Now this part is important. Turn your paper COUNTER clockwise, so that the notch you just punched is on the left.

Now, you want to align the line that you just scored with the little guide arm that leads off the bottom left of the punch button. If you try to line the paper back up with the 2 5/8 mark again, your notches will be off and your envelope won’t fold correctly. I bumped the contrast on this photo way up so you can see the score line a little better.
Now punch and score just like you did on the first side, then turn counter clockwise again. Repeat until all 4 sides are notched. It will look like this when you’re done. I’ve folded up the sides a bit here so you can see all the score lines. Each score line should meet another at the inside point of a notch.
Now you want to round your corners. To do this, just insert each corner into the space at the top of the punch button and punch.
Ta-da!
Next fold in the sides of your envelope.
Line the lower edges of your side flaps with the adhesive of your choice. Elmer’s Glue-All works great here, but I prefer and generally use a glue or tape runner like this one. 
Fold up your bottom flap and press where it meets the side flaps to seal the adhesive, then fold down your top flap and press flat. 
Isn’t it so cute?! I love the “just stay little” sentiment  near the point of the closing flap. Perfect for a baby girl gift! If you’re adding a card for giving, you can go ahead and do that and seal the envelope with your glue runner. If this is for giving someone to use later, you can include a sticker for them to seal it closed when they’re ready.
These little envelopes are so easy to embellish too. For this one I just added a scalloped circle and a little bow, both secured with the glue runner. My SIL Leah’s sister Deborah made one like this at the craft day and I loved it!

For this one I just added ribbon, sealed into the bottom flap and wrapped around the front.

Then I just folded a little ribbon rosette to accent it.

The Envelope Punch Board retails for $19.95, but both Hobby Lobby and Joann carry them, and there’s always a coupon for at least 40% at both. And of course you can get them on Amazon, which is where I got mine, and they’re forever going on sale there. In fact, they’re $12.75 on there right now.
Besides envelopes, you can also make gift boxes and 3d envelopes with this punch board, as well as darling little paper bows and lovely little treat boxes. For more ideas for the Envelope Punch Board as well as other WRMK punch boards, check out my Pinterest Board, Punch Board Projects.

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Teachers of Good Things Craft Day

At my church (shout out to Walridge Baptist Church!) we have a monthly Ladies Meeting for our women’s ministry, Teachers of Good Things. Up until now it’s consisted of a potluck/Bible study combo, which has been wonderful (and tasty!). But recently we have decided to change things up a bit. We’re going in cycles each quarter, with one month being focused on missions, one month a prayer meeting, and one month…a CRAFT DAY!!!

I may have been a little excited about it. Our first craft day was this past Saturday, and I was really nervous about it because Leah, our pastor’s wife (who is also my sister-in-law and married to my brother Toby, er, our pastor) asked me to head it up. We decided to do cards this month, and Leah and I went on several crazy, madcap supply runs that may have involved various milkshakes and some total geeking out over craft tools.

I was up till I-don’t-want-to-share-this-info-with-my-husband o’clock the night before, slicing cardstock, die cutting circles, and embossing all the things I could reach. Here’s what we ended up doing:

First of all, Christmas tags. These were crazy simple. To make them, I first used my Sizzix to die cut a crap-load (that’s just for Toby, who teases me because I recently stood up to give my testimony in church and managed to include the word “crap” in it twice, because I’m way classy), anyway, a crap-load of circles from cardstock. The circles were about 1.5 inches, and I used various colors of cardstock, including some pretty shimmery red and white that we got at Tuesday Morning, 25 sheets for $1.99. All of these I embossed with winter/Christmas designs using my Sizzix Big Kick and various embossing folders. I also cut scalloped circles the same size from plain cardstock. To assemble, the ladies just used Elmer’s Glue-All to glue a scalloped circle to the back of an embossed circle, punched a hole through both layers using a hole punch, and attached either jute twine, baker’s twine, or ribbon.

Next, we did note cards, both a Christmas version and an everyday use version. This is where all my paper slicing came in. Leah and I found tons of gorgeous cardstock stacks at Tuesday Morning, Joann, and AC Moore. The stacks were all 12×12 or 6×6, and we needed the cards to measure 4×6 before they were folded. So I cut the 12×12 sheets down into six 4×6 pieces each, and just sliced 2 inches off one side of the 6×6 sheets. Those 2 inch remnants were put to use as well, which I’ll tell you about in a minute.

We folded the cards in half, then punched the front edge with Marvy Uchida Border Punches, like I did for Nick’s grandmother here. I love my border punch system, and I got one for my friend Amy for her birthday last month. She was kind enough to let us borrow it for the craft day, and Leah and I found another for the church on one of our trips to Tuesday Morning. Then I found two more on another day and snatched them up for an early Christmas gift for Leah and a birthday gift for Nick’s sister Rachael. So we had 5 to go around, but honestly we could have used twice that many.

We had all 8 different cartridges on hand, but most ladies chose the ribbon stitch one, and they had so much fun choosing pretty ribbon to weave through the slots.

The border punch does 2 inches at a time, so a four inch card was perfect. Also perfect about that size is the fact that an envelope made with a 6×6 inch sheet will fit it perfectly. We had several 6×6 stacks that we used for some of the envelopes, and I cut down a couple of 12×12 stacks for the rest. We had three of the WRMK Envelope Punch Boards on hand, and I wish we’d had more of those too. But several ladies said they planned on getting one of their own, so perhaps next time we’ll have more. 🙂

The other project we did was to turn some of those 2 inch cardstock remnants into gorgeous bookmarks using the border punches and more ribbon.

I was really afraid that it wouldn’t go well, that maybe I had too many projects planned and maybe the border punch and the envelope punch board might seem overwhelming to some. But every lady there picked right up on it within a few minutes, and the mistake pile was surprisingly small. I was also afraid that maybe they just wouldn’t enjoy it, but most of them stayed over an hour past the scheduled end time!

I’m so excited it all went so well, and I can’t wait for next quarter!

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Tooth Fairy Surprise

My Lily girl lost her first tooth Wednesday! On our way to the store she told me her tooth was hurting and moving, so when we got where we were going, I checked it out, and it was ready to fall out, which was crazy since it hadn’t been loose at all the day before!

I took a few shots of the wiggly stage.


That night at dinner it came out, and she declared it the best day of her life. 🙂 Then she misplaced the tooth. She actually thinks she might have swallowed it, which I suppose is possible since she was in the other room when it happened and may have been too busy touching the empty socket to pay attention to where the actual tooth went. Anyway, this devastated her, because she was sure that the Tooth Fairy wouldn’t visit if she couldn’t pony up a baby tooth for her. I assured her that I had a picture of her smiling without the tooth, and the Tooth Fairy would certainly accept that as proof.

When I was a kid we got a quarter under our pillow, or maybe a dollar if we were lucky. But Lily is not yet at a stage where money means much to her, and I knew she would much rather have a girly accessory as a prize. But I wanted her to have the choice, so I asked her, if I happened to see the Tooth Fairy when she came, if I should tell her she wanted money or a present, and she assured me that she would much prefer a gift!

After she went to bed I got busy making a card and a bracelet for her. The card I made using my Marvy Uchida Border Punch System, which has been so much fun!

I made the envelope using my Envelope Punch Board and this fun heart motif vellum. The other day I found a little Xyron Sticker Maker I’ve had in my craft stash for years, so I used my questionable scissor skills to cut her name and a heart out of pink cardstock, then turned them into stickers and stuck them to the front of the envelope.

In the card I wrote:

Dear Lily,

        Congratulations on losing your first tooth! You are such a big girl! I heard you might have swallowed it, but that’s okay. I saw the pretty picture of you smiling without it, so I can still leave you a present. I hope you like it!
                           
                                                                       Love,
                                                                       The Tooth Fairy

I made the bracelet out of a little pre-made chain of blanks I got ages ago at Hobby Lobby on clearance and some mini bottle caps and cabochons I found at Tuesday Morning. I took a couple of links out of the bracelet, and it made it just the right size. I flattened the bottle caps using my Sizzix Big Kick. The Big Kick/Big Shot works very well flattening full size bottle caps, but I ran into some problems on some of the little ones. I’m not sure why, but some of them folded under, and I wasted probably 4 or 5 trying to get a good one of each color. I used a 1/2 inch circle punch to cut circles from scrapbook paper, then glued them to the backs of the cabochons. I just used my hot glue gun on high heat to attach the cabochons to the bottle caps and the bottle caps to the blank trays. If I’d had more time I probably would have used E6000, but I was trying to get it done so I could leave it for her and go to bed. I think this will hold up well enough, and she’s not the sort to put things other than food in her mouth, but if you’re making one for a child, make sure that they can be trusted not to put things they shouldn’t in their mouth or use a stronger glue.

She LOVED both the card and the bracelet, although she woke up upset because she couldn’t find them on the bed at first and was sure the Tooth Fairy had passed by because of the misplaced tooth. As if the Tooth Fairy could resist this face!

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Birthday Gifts with We R Memory Keepers Punch Boards

Guys, I’ve been playing with the Envelope Punch Board (and a few others!) by We R Memory Keepers, and I’ve been having so much fun! Nick’s grandmother Gail’s birthday fell the week we were at camp, so we missed the party, but we got to see her on July 4th, and I gave her the birthday gifts I made for her then.

Last year, for Mother’s Day I think, I made Gail some blank note cards. I punched out butterflies and flowers from scrapbook paper and sewed them to the fronts of the cards, and she loved them! I sure wish I had thought to snap a picture before I gave them to her. Anyway, I thought she would enjoy some smaller note cards for her birthday, and okay, I really wanted to make her something using my punch boards!

I actually made her two different kinds. One set of ten were little gift card sized cards, and each one had a different image or pattern embossed on the front. I just made these with stamps and embossing powder. These will be perfect for slipping a gift card into or attaching to a package or gift bag.

The others were a bit larger at 4 x 3.25 inches and suitable for mailing if she chooses. These were my favorite! Each card and envelope was unique in pattern.

I used fun cardstock for the cards from 4.5 x 6.5 inch stacks that I trimmed to 4 x 6.5 and folded in half. Then I used a Marvey Uchida Clever Lever Border Punch System that I got for crazy cheap at Tuesday Morning ($7.99 – score!) to punch a decorative border along the front edge.

This border punch system is ah-may-zing! You can get different cartridges, which are normally about $11.99 each, but Tuesday Morning had them for $1.99! The punch cuts exactly 2 inches in each punch, which was why I trimmed the cards to 4 inches wide. There’s no guesswork with where to line up the punch for the next cut, because the guide has little slots where the punch fits, and there’s a pretty strong magnetic bar that keeps your paper from slipping out of place.

I made the envelopes from different patterned 6 x 6 sheets, and I LOVE how they turned out! I also punched a little flower out of sticker paper so she can seal them if she wants to mail them, and also a label for each so that she can write an address. I just included those in each envelope.

The labels were a little larger than I wanted them to be, but that was the size paper punch I had.

I also used all three of my other boards in making her gift, although I forgot to get a picture of the cute little gift bag I made with the Gift Bag Punch Board. First of all, I made her up some adorable little pillow boxes using the Pillow Box Punch Board.

Some of these I made using 4.5 inch length cardstock, and some using 6 inch length cardstock. The smaller ones are perfect for something small like candy or earrings, and the bigger ones fit a gift card perfectly.

I also made her a couple of pairs of earrings, and I put them in this sweet little box I made using the Candy Box Punch Board. She had already untied the baker’s twine from one end to open it when I took this picture.

I’ll go into a little more on how to use each of the punch boards in my upcoming posts, but for now I’ll just say that they are all just the best thing ever, ever, ever! None of the links in this post are affiliate links, and these products were not provided to me for review.

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