Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Hello, 2014!

Happy New Year! Well, in a few hours, at least. :)

No projects to share today, but rather, I'd like to share with you what's up and coming for myself and my little blog in 2014. 

The start of a new year is always exciting, and also a great time for change. I'm one of those people who embrace change and enjoy changing things up here and there. 

So, what's coming in 2014?!

1. A new blog design! Yay! I'm excited to announce that at the end of January Made Especially for You will be receiving a makeover by Kim from 733 Design! I love her clean and simple, yet professional style and am excited to see what she has in store for my blog.

2.  Personality. My most favorite blogs dive into the life of the blogger rather than simply sharing the blogger's fabulous projects, and I think it's time my readers get to learn a little bit more about me and my life, aside from my hobby.

3. Resources! As a certified Copic Instructor & Designer, I'm looking into putting together resources for the classes I teach, so stay tuned for those! A class schedule will also be found on my blog for local crafters interested in taking one of my classes.

4. New features. I've taken a step back from some (though not all) of my design team work, and am looking forward to bringing new features to my blog, such as "What I'm Loving Wednesday" where I'll be sharing things I'm currently drooling over! :) 

5. Project Life! I have already started working ahead on pages for 2014 and cannot wait to begin sharing my layouts on a weekly basis! Hint: My first PL layout will be shared this Friday. :)

I've decided that 2014 is also the year of planning. With my new Erin Condren planner, this will be a piece of cake!

Okay, so, this planner cost $50. Now, before you go judging me, it is TOTALLY worth it. I'm not one to throw down $50 on just anything (especially as a college student) but I'm an organizing/planning/OCD freak and feel much better when I write things down to help keep my life in order. If you're nodding your head along with me, I highly suggest taking a look around her site!

P.S. When you create an account on the Erin Condren site, you automatically receive an email with a $10 off coupon! That's how I convinced Santa to buy this for me. :)

There are SO many different designs to choose from, and most everything can be personalized. How fun is that?! 

My planner is organized into morning/day/night, which works well with my class schedule. There's also room underneath and on the side for weekly goals. 

The planner holds A LOT and is laminated so you don't have to worry about destroying it! Well, it wouldn't be an easy task, at least. :)

I love the random, inspirational quotes found throughout the planner.

The fun, bright, colorful nature of the planner totally matches my personality, and there are TONS of different designs to choose from! If I could have them all, I would. :)

What are your crafty/blogging plans for 2014? I'd love to hear! :)

Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Merry Christmas!

Merry Christmas! Hard to believe it's already here... I feel like I just finished creating Christmas in July projects! Time flies when you're having fun. :)

Today I'd like to share with you the place cards I made for our Christmas dinner tomorrow that are also my challenge entry for this week's photo inspiration challenge at Peachy Keen Stamps:

How pretty is this color combo?! It obviously lends itself nicely to something Christmas-y, so I used the colors as inspiration for our Christmas place cards, which worked out nicely since I was able to kill two birds with one stone. :) Aside from the colors, I also added some sparkle to match the ornament using Champagne Stickles. 

The place cards are rather simple, but I like that they still have a touch of elegance. I computer generated everyone's names, and then printed and cut them out of cream colored cardstock. I used a Fiskars corner punch for a more decorative look, and added some gold cardstock behind the cream to tie in with the colors on the table itself.

An Instagram shot for fun :)

The small (snowflake?) stamp is from Peachy Keen's November stamp set of the month. Regardless if it's a snowflake, I turned it into a poinsettia and colored it with Copics R56 and R59, and added a dab of Champagne Stickles in the center for a bit of sparkle. 

I am off to get a bit of cleaning done and then settle in for the evening, we are just having a quiet family dinner tonight, and tomorrow we are having company over. I hope everyone has a happy holiday with their loved ones!

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Tiny Tags

Good morning! Today I'm sharing with you all a design team project I made for Two Berry Creative using their fabulous Rectangular Blank Tags! (Their Scalloped Top Blank Tags would also look great with the project I'm about to share with you!)

Over the summer I made a Christmas tag that I absolutely loved, and decided to recreate the concept, only this time, in miniature version. Here's the original post, but I'll share a picture with you as well:

And now for the tags I created using Two Berry Creative tags:

Since I find this a really cool technique, I decided to put together a mini tutorial so you can try it yourself! Here's what you'll need:

Two Berry Creative Rectangular Blank Tags
Tim Holtz Fired Brick Distress Ink
Tim Holtz Aged Mahogany Distress Ink
Tim Holtz Walnut Stain Distress Ink
Tim Holtz Peeled Paint Distress Ink
Tim Holtz Forest Moss Distress Ink
Ranger Inkessentials Ink Blending Tool
Heat Gun
Embossing Ink Pad
Black Embossing Powder
Metallic Gold Embossing Powder
Small Snowflake Stamps
Sentiments of Your Choice

Keep in mind that you are more than welcome to try this technique using other colors of ink and embossing powder of your choice - these are just the colors I used. :)

Although I made both a red and a green tag, my tutorial shows the red tag being inked and at the end you'll see both tags together. 

1. Gather your supplies!

2. Ink your tags! Start with the lightest color first. 
(Lightest color on my green tag is Peeled Paint).

3. Then apply the medium color.
(Medium color on my green tag is Forest Moss).

4. Lastly, distress the edges with your darkest color.
(Darkest color on my green tag is also Walnut Stain).

5. Next, stamp and heat emboss your sentiment.
Sentiments are from a retired Whimsical Designs stamp set.

6. Heat emboss snowflakes wherever you desire.
Silver embossing powder would be pretty, too!

7. Add some ribbon or twine to the top of the tag, and ta da! (Two Berry Creative's Silver Metallic twine or Gold Metallic twine would be a great tag topper for these!)
Crinkle ribbon is from 3 Girl Jam

These tags are going to look fabulous on gift bags this year! You could also use this technique for other seasons as well... I'm thinking I might try a blue/wintery one in the future, as long as I remember to pick up some silver embossing powder. :)

Thanks so much for stopping by and Happy Holidays!

Monday, December 16, 2013

You're Such A Dear

What a busy day of crafting I've had! Feels great to be able to craft without feeling guilty about not doing homework, studying, or anything else school-related. This afternoon I finished up a card I made for Peachy Keen's current glitter card challenge:

I love me some glitter! When in doubt, add sparkle. :) The background of this card is embossed with a snowflake embossing folder using my Cuttlebug and I used a Copic clear Spica glitter pen to highlight the embossed snowflakes even more.

The birch trees are dies from Impression Obsession that I embellished with Glitter Frosting (Hint of Green) Flower Soft. The deer and sentiment are both of course from Peachy Keen's December Stamp Set of the Month, and I colored the deer with Copics E25, E27, E29 and R20. 

I'm off to get a bit of Christmas shopping done before going back to hiding in my craft room! Thanks for stopping by. :)

Sunday, December 15, 2013

Mistletoe Magic

Happy Sunday! I can officially say I am done with finals and classes for the semester as of Friday afternoon - yay! I've spent the past two days simply relaxing and not doing very much, and honestly, it felt great to be a bit lazy for a change. :) But now I'm ready to spend the next 3 weeks crafting my butt off!

Today I'd like to share with you design team projects I made for The Scrapbooking Studio using the new "Mistletoe Magic" collection by My Mind's Eye. At first I thought it was a tad bit vintage for me, but I immediately fell in love with the patterns and the colors!

Project #1 - Happy Holidays Card
Items Used:

 Project #2 - Merry Christmas Tag

Items Used:

Project #3 - Altered Treat Box

Items Used:

Project #4 - "Exploring the Christmas Tree" 12x12 Layout
Items Used:

There are so many fun embellishments that go along with this collection and it was a blast using all of them! I love how this line incorporates traditional Christmas colors with a touch of aqua/turquoise to give it a more wintery feel as well.

The full "Mistletoe Magic" collection can be viewed on the My Mind's Eye website, and purchased at The Scrapbooking Studio both in store AND online!

I am off to get some crafting done (finally!) have a great rest of your evening!

Sunday, December 8, 2013

Snow Much Fun!

Happy Sunday evening! Did you all have a great weekend? I taught a Copic class yesterday at The Scrapbooking Studio - so much fun! Since returning home I've been working nonstop on final exam projects, this week is finals week - the most dreaded week of every college student's semester. Thankfully my finals are all projects instead of tests, but it's still a lot of work. 

During a homework break I decided to get started on the new Peachy Keen Challenge and their December Release challenge, and thought I'd share both with you here to save me some time so I can get back to my schoolwork.. only 5 more days and then I'm FREE!

The December Release Challenge is to create a birthday card... here's my take:

Isn't this snowman cupcake the cutest?! It's from Peachy Keen's "Yummies" stamp set. The papers are from Echo Park's "Take a Note" collection and the sentiment is from Get Inky Stamps. I colored the cupcake with Copics E25, E47, E49, R05, R08, B91, B95 and B97. I also added a few dabs of Bisque Liquid Pearls as a final embellishment. 

This week's regular Peachy Keen challenge is a 3D Ornament challenge, here's what I came up with:

Snowflake ornaments! Last winter at Michael's I found some chipboard snowflakes in their dollar bins and grabbed a few packages. I painted them with white acrylic paint and stamped faces with the smallest faces in Peachy Keen's "Snow Cuties" stamp set. I also brushed on a layer of clear glitter paint, and used twine from Two Berry Creative to hang them on the tree.

Here are a couple of close-ups:

Well, enough play and time to get back to work. I'm creating a board game that involves using the Print and Cut feature on my Cameo, so at least my next project is somewhat craft-related!

Have a lovely rest of your evening and a great start to your week! :)

Friday, December 6, 2013

Happy Holidays Blog Hop

Welcome to 3 Girl Jam's Happy Holidays Blog Hop! 

We're so glad you can join us and sneak a peek at 3GJ's new products! If you've come from Nicole's blog, you're in the right place. If you've just come across the hop and would like to start at the beginning, please visit the 3 Girl Jam blog. :)

This weekend 3GJ is having a special on their new products!

Use the code: HOLIDAY to save $10.00 off your order of $20.00 or more when you buy one or more of the 3 new products!

You can also comment on ALL the stops for a chance to win a Ribbon Candy Crinkle Ribbon Bundle, Christmas Flair, and a Jute Ribbon Pack. 

I created two projects for the hop using 3GJ's fabulous new products:

(I apologize for the shadows in my pictures - it has seriously been cloudy here ALL week and this was the best I could do with the little sunlight we had yesterday. Darn Mother Nature!)

The first project I made is a tag using the new Ribbon Candy Bundle and a super cute Christmas Flair button. I cut a tag using my Silhouette and embellished with Lawn Fawn's "Peace, Joy, Love" collection. I created a small library card pocket also using my Silhouette and included a smaller card with a sentiment. 

For my second project, I created a simple card using Jute Ribbon. I cut a Christmas tree with my Silhouette, distressed the edges, and glued pearls on the tree to act as ornaments. I covered the star on the tree using Champagne Stickles. The Kraft cardstock is embossed with snowflakes, and I used a Copic clear Spica pen to add glitter to the embossed flakes. I love the subtle sparkle effect this gives the card, and think my Spica pen will be an often used tool this winter. :)

Here's the entire lineup in case you get lost along the way:

Guest Designer Ashley - http://especiallymade.blogspot.com <--- YOU ARE HERE
Jessica B. - http://jessicascraftshaque.blogspot.com/ <--- NEXT STOP

Thanks so much for hopping! :)

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Tis the Season with Two Berry Creative!

Hey crafters! I hope you all had a great holiday weekend! Today I'd like to share with you some Christmas cards I made using the fabulous twine from Two Berry Creative!

Every year I tell myself to start my Christmas cards early, but as usual time slips away and they usually get made right after Thanksgiving. True to form, that's what happened this year and what I spent most of the past week working on, well, after I got over a cold - not fun! Thankfully, I had found my inspiration over the summer on Pinterest (and now I'm cursing myself for not actually pinning the photo!) so that made the process a bit easier.

I like to make my Christmas cards assembly-style so that the process is quicker considering I usually have to make quite a few of them. This year I made 6 versions of the same card, all with twine from Two Berry Creative and papers from Heidi Swapp's "Believe" collection:

Using Forest Green Two Berry Creative Twine

Using Silver Metallic Two Berry Creative Twine

(The dark green bows look almost turquoise in these pictures, but I promise the green matches the green buttons and it's just the lighting). 

Using Gold Metallic Two Berry Creative Twine

Using Forest Green Two Berry Creative Twine

Using Silver Metallic Two Berry Creative Twine

Using Red Riding Hood Two Berry Creative Twine

These cards were are super simple yet super fun to make! They are 5.5" x 5.5" and the ornament is about 4.5" and is cut from a Silhouette store file. The tiny tag was also cut using my Silhouette, and the Tis the Season stamp is from an old Whimsical Designs stamp set. Both the buttons and bows were purchased at Michaels (bows are unfortunately my worst enemy, and I knew that trying to tie many of them was only going to cause frustration!) The ornament is adhered to the card base using pop dots for extra dimension, and that was the finishing touch!

Have you started on your Christmas cards yet? Do you start early or wait until last minute like me? :) 

Have a wonderful rest of your week!

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