Saturday, December 31, 2011

Out With The Old and In With The New Blog Hop - Day 1

Welcome to the Out With The Old and In With The New two-day New Year's Blog Hop! We're so happy you could join the Made Especially For You design team in celebrating the new year. Day one of the hop will feature some of our favorite projects we've created this past year, and day two of the hop will feature a New Year's themed project. If you've come from another blog in the hop and are looking to start at the beginning of the hop, you're in the right place. :) 

Since I've only been blogging since June and just got my Cricut last week, it was hard to choose a few favorites since my card making has improved a lot since I first started over the summer. After taking a quick trip down memory lane, I found a couple of cards that I remember feeling really proud of after making them.

This card was made using inspiration from a Mojo Monday challenge sketch and was created especially for a design team application. I love the colors and the simplicity of it. It's one of the few cards I've made that I felt turned out almost perfect.

 This card was made just for fun, and is also one of the only cards I've ever decorated the inside of just for fun. Normally I only decorate the inside of the card if I'm actually giving it to someone, but I liked the idea of finishing the quote on the inside for this one. The front of the card reads 'shoot for the moon' and the inside says 'even if you miss, you'll land among the stars.'

There you have it! Two of my favorite cards from 2011. I hope to have many favorites in 2012. 

What fun is a blog hop without blog candy? I'll be giving away the following crafty goodies:
- 1 spool of pink ribbon
- 1 clear stamp set
- 1 set of gold/silver rhinestones
- Assorted chipboard pieces
- Paper Bliss scrapbook accent frame
- 1 package of green, wooden buttons
- 2 pre-made cards and envelopes
- 1 rubber stamp

Entering to win is easy! Here's what you have to do:
   1.) Become a follower (if you aren't already)
   2.) Comment on a post either day of the hop (you'll be entered twice if you comment both days) 
   3.) 'Like' the Made Especially For You Facebook page

The winner will be randomly chosen and announced on Tuesday January 3rd

Your next stop is Jamie's blog - she has some wonderful projects to share with you! Make sure to stop by for the second day of the hop, too! :) 

Sunday, December 25, 2011

Merry Christmas & Exciting News!

Merry Christmas, everyone! I hope you have a great holiday with your loved ones. My family celebrated with our extended family on the 23rd and the 24th, so today we're just relaxing around the house. Well, they might be, but I'll be playing with my brand new Cricut Expression! :) My camera isn't charged and I'm too impatient to wait to take pictures, lol, but here are the cartridges I got with it:

- Winter Lace
- Luau
- Happy Graduation
- Father's Day
- Mini Monsters
- Groovy Times
- Winnie the Pooh Font Set
- Destinations

I can't wait to get started on all of my upcoming projects. I've been holding off on making them in case I got a Cricut for Christmas, so I'm glad the waiting paid off. It's been nice taking a few days off from crafting, but I'm ready to start playing again!

I hope Santa was as good to you as he was to me, enjoy the rest of your holiday! :)


Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Gift-Wrapped Envelopes

Hi everyone! I can't believe there's only 5 days until Christmas - time has gone by so fast! My family starts celebrating Christmas on the 23rd, and it's even harder to believe that it's only 3 days away. The weather here in northern Illinois hasn't helped much either, we've had temps in the 30's and 40's lately and with barely any snow, it sure doesn't feel like Christmastime. Today I'd like to share with you the envelopes I made for my coworkers that contain their Christmas cards. I've been working on this project since October, and it feels so good to finally have completed it.

I handmade the 5 in x 5 in envelopes using papers from the SugarPlum Recollections paper pad (the cards are made from these papers also). I tried to make sure that the same paper on the card wasn't used for the envelope, and if there was more red on the card to use more green on the envelope, you get the idea. I then created tags (with a glitter border) and chose a bow and ribbon color for each card based off the colors on the envelope paper. Here are a few samples:

The envelopes were made using a 5 x 5 envelope template, a scoring tool, two-sided tape and glue dots. They're super easy and fun to make! 

I made a total of 21 cards/envelopes for my coworkers this year. I put them in their mailboxes last night, and I'm excited to hear what they say about them. I loved the idea of giving the envelopes a gift-like appearance because it makes receiving only a card more exciting than just receiving a card in a plain envelope, at least in my opinion.

All 21 of the cards. I couldn't find a good place to take the picture other than my bed, so I apologize for the poor quality. :/ One new year's resolution I'll definitely be working on is taking better pictures! You can at least see the variety of paper/ribbon combos used. 

Thanks for reading! :)


Saturday, December 17, 2011

**Sponsor Call!**

Have a digital stamp store, etsy shop, or simply want to show off your own handmade talents? Become a sponsor for the newest feature of Made Especially For You - weekly challenges! Made Especially For You now hosts weekly challenges that ALL bloggers are welcome to enter.

Our design team is looking for sponsors for 2012 to provide a sponsorship for one or more of our weekly challenges. 

What exactly does being a sponsor entail?
  - Offering a prize for the winner of the challenge (the prize is 100% up to the sponsor, they can choose whatever they would like to give away, whether it correlates with the challenge or not)

- Promotion of the sponsor's blog through the challenge, Made Especially For You's Facebook page and also through the blogs of the other ten design team members

- The design team is also willing to incorporate your offerings into the challenge, for example if you own a digital stamp store and are giving away a particular set of digital stamps, we would love to use those in our design team challenge sample creations!

Interested in becoming a sponsor? We'd love to have you! Send an e-mail to regarding this post and I'll go ahead and send you the available challenges that you can choose from as well as answer any questions you may have! :)

Made Especially For You DT Leader

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Photo Inspiration by Perfect Sentiments

I just drank my first cup of hot chocolate of the season and am ready to settle down and write this post. :) Tonight I'd like to share with you the card I made for this week's Perfect Sentiments challenge. 

The flowers look coral-colored in the picture (I'm so sorry!) but they really are pink like the flowers in the inspiration photo are, I promise. 

The challenge was to create a card reflecting an anniversary sentiment based off the following picture:

When I first saw the picture, I automatically knew I wanted to use the colors in the photo, white and black with a hint of blue. I also knew I wanted to use some form of lacy ribbon to match the curtain, but then I didn't know where to go from there. After contemplating for a while, I decided to use the flowers in the picture and found the 'perfect sentiment' (no pun intended) to match the card. I handmade the flowers using a flower punch and watercolor paint, and added the pearls around the border of the die cut shape. I'm actually really pleased with how it turned out! :)

Thanks for reading! :) 


Monday, December 12, 2011

'Happy Birthday' Snowflake Card

Happy Monday, everyone! :) The weekly challenge here at Made Especially For You this week is to create a card or scrapbook layout featuring snow or snowflakes - my favorite! The timing between this challenge and my cousin's birthday worked perfectly, she had a sweet sixteen party over the weekend that was decorated with snowflakes, penguins, etc. I made her a birthday card featuring snowflakes to match the theme of her party: 

The card is 5 in x 5 in.

The card was also based off the same Mojo Monday sketch that the card in my previous post is based off, which you can view here. For those of you who saw the exploding box I created for a challenge a while back, these are the same winter papers from Little Yellow Bicycle that I used to create the box.

Materials Used:
~ Winter papers by Little Yellow Bicycle
~ Green ribbon by Studio G
~ 'Happy Birthday' clear stamp with black ink
~ White cardstock
~ Silver glitter
~ Glitter snowflakes and a white button
~ Pop dots, double-sided tape, tacky glue and glue dots

Make sure to check out the weekly challenge if you haven't already. Our sponsor, K 'n K Designs, is giving away the winner's choice of three digital stamp sets! 

Once I'm finished with my last two finals tomorrow, I'll have an entire month to catch up on crafting and regular posting - I can't wait! :) I'm looking forward to having time to craft without trying to make a card in a time crunch, it'll be so nice.

Have a great week! :) 


Thursday, December 8, 2011

Perfect Sentiments Challenge Entry

Hi everyone! I'm super excited I have time for a post during the actual week this week, lately it's come down to posting my weekly challenge entry on Mondays and occasionally a card post here and there. Today I'd like to share with you a card I made specially for the Perfect Sentiments challenge - to create a Christmas card and make it sparkle! I'm a total glitter girl, so this challenge was a lot of fun for me. :) There's glitter on the border of the ribbon, in the cardstock and also around the sentiment. 

The card was based off last week's Mojo Monday sketch, which unfortunately I didn't have time to enter. This sketch is so cute, I'll definitely be using it as inspiration in the future!

Thanks so much for stopping by, have a fantastic Friday! :)


Monday, December 5, 2011

Ornament Challenge & My First Digi Stamp Card!

Happy Monday, everyone! Today I'd like to share with you the ornament I made for the weekly challenge here at Made Especially For You and also the first card I made using a digital stamp! :) 

The ornament I used for the challenge this week is actually an ornament I made last year. I made about thirty of these for my fourth-grade TA class last year for Christmas - they loved them! I bought clear candy bags and put them in there with some candy and tied them together with a ribbon and with a tag that had there names on it - I wish I had taken pictures so I could share them! :/ I ended up having an extra penguin ornament because one of the kids moved so I saved it for my own tree, and was able to take a picture of it this year. :)

The ornament is made out of wood pieces that I painted using acrylic paint and hot-glued together. If I remember right, I believe I used one large heart for the body, two ovals for the wings, two stars for the feet, one small circle for the head, and one small heart for the beak. I used pipe cleaners to make the candy cane and then a red pipe cleaner and pom pons for the earmuffs. I attached a red loop of ribbon on the back so it could be an ornament. I "scraplifted" the project idea from the Michael's store website, I tried finding a link but couldn't, I found it over a year ago so I wouldn't be surprised if it wasn't posted anymore.

The sponsor the challenge this week is the super cute Digi Doodle Shop, and I couldn't resist using one of their adorable digital stamps. I found this cute penguin to match the ornament, and also realized there was an ornament on the card to match this week's challenge - how perfect! :) I colored him using colored pencils (I don't own any Copics, and this was my first time using a digital stamp) and made a really simple card.

I added some cotton to the fur trim on the hat to give it a more 3D effect.

Thanks so much for reading! Make sure to stop by the challenge page and enter an ornament if you haven't already - your creation will be entered for a chance to win a $10 gift certificate to the Digi Doodle Shop!

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