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Monday, March 31, 2014

March 31st Topic: Charms!

Happy Monday!

It's Monday and that means we have a brand new topic.....charms!  And I don't mean theses charms.

I mean these charms!

One of the wonderful outcomes of this year's challenge is that I am rediscovering some of my favorite embellishments, tools and techniques.  Charms fall into that category.  While they are not as popular as they once were....I still love them.

So what older embellishments do you still love?

Sunday, March 30, 2014

Stickers: Project #25

Happy Friday!

This week are working with stickers.  I only managed to get one project done this week.  Trying to wrap up work on taxes.....crafting is way more fun.  But I don't the IRS would let me off the hook. :)

Project #25-Christmas Cookie Layout

Supplies:  Stickers (Karen Foster), card stock, pattern paper, journaling card and pocket, brads, ribbon, star charm, black pen, Prima flower, heart punch and pop-dots.

Thanks for stopping by!

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Sticker Storage

Happy Wednesday!

For as long as there has been stickers....there have been storage issues and solutions.  Today there are many options on the market and many different solutions.  I find none of them to be perfect, but all of them have their pros.  The trick is the find the one that works for you.  You know it works when you can find what need and use it on a regular basis.  Your storage solution doesn't work if you find you are never using that supply.

My stickers are stored in several places.  The majority hang from one of my trusty shoe racks. :)

My themed and letter stickers are in a file drawer.  And finally those stickers that were a part of a kit or package generally stay with the paper they came with.  I don't tend to use stickers as much right now, but that is not a reflection of my storage solution.  Most of my stickers are meant for scrapbooking and I have only just started to re-discover my joy of scrapbooking.  I imagine over the coming year I will use them more and more.

I also updated the My Creative Live Organizing Pinterest board.  Lots of cool ideas if you need some inspiration.  So how do you store your stickers?  Is it working or is it time for a change?

Monday, March 24, 2014

March 24th Topic: Stickers!

Happy Monday!

Time for a brand new topic.  This week's topic is an oldie but goodie......stickers.  Paper crafters have been collecting stickers since the very beginning.  I remember having a huge collection of Mrs. Grossman stickers when I 1st started scrapbooking and a binder to store them in.  We have come a long way baby!

Many of the stickers I own are pretty old....but I still love them.  I only kept what I truly love.  But I still don't use them as often as I would like.  This week should be a lot of fun and I hope you join me.  I am going to continue working scrapbook pages and Project Inspiration.

So what about you?  Do you have a secret stash of stickers you can't give up?

Friday, March 21, 2014

Button: Blog Hop

A couple of the MCC instructors are joining me this week as we explore buttons.

Creative Arts with Shirley Pando

Stop by Shirley's blog and check out her clear button project.  I love clear buttons....and seeing her work makes me want to pull out mine and get busy.

Pearl Maple by Mandy Collins.

Mandy posted her button project right here on the My Creative Life 2014 blog.  I am always inspired by Mandy's work and I encourage you to stop by her blog for even more mixed media inspiration.

Thanks ladies for sharing you awesome work.

Buttons: Projects #23 & 24

Happy Friday,

I hope you are having a very crafty day....and weekend.  It is time to share our button projects.

Project #23: Project Inspiration
One of my favorite ways to use buttons is to enhance shapes or create them solely from buttons.

Supplies:  Buttons, card stock, pattern paper (Die Cuts With a View), floss, die (QuicKutz), paint, ink stamps (Papertrey Ink) and black pen.

Project #24-Christmas 2013 Title Page
I am happy to say that I got a little scrapbooking done.  This is the title page for my 2013 Christmas mini-album.  And I even manged to organize a few additional pages to work on this week. :)

Supplies:  Pattern paper and stickers (Simple Stories), buttons, charm and burlap.  Die Cuts with a View has a brand new burlap stack....which I LOVE. But I still have not idea why burlap become so hot.  I guess everything old does become new again. :)

I have finish my 1st Project Inspiration ATC tray.  I can't wait to hang it on the wall and start on the next one.  Seeing it when I go into my craft room inspires me to continue creating.  So I guess it is successful project. :)

Thanks for stopping by!

Wednesday, March 19, 2014


Happy Wednesday!

Time to talk organizing and storage.  This week we are focusing on buttons.  I am in the process of updating my button storage.  Which I think is a theme for crafters.....we are constantly re-organizing.  Most of my buttons are organized in the trays pictured below.  This are deep drawer organizers intended for office supplies.  But that never stops us, does it.  We can always re-purpose items.  Plus they are pretty inexpensive.  I believe I purchased them for $5 a piece at Walmart.  I have 6 of them and they are housed in a shelving unit that supports my desk.

Years ago I started organizing by color and I am so happy I did.  The only buttons that are not in these drawers are my white buttons.  Because I have toooooooo many of them.  Imagine that.  LOL!

So I have been weighing my options.  I have these metal buckets....which I love, but also hate.  Why do I hate them?  Because I can't see what is in them.  Currently they house a variety of embellishments and multi-colored ribbon.  But because I can't see what is in them I never use anything housed there. UGGGGG! Time to make a change.

While updating the MCL Pinterest Board I found many, many photos like this one.  I am planning on swapping out my buckets for Mason jars.  Now I just have to figure out what to with the buckets.....don't know if I can part with them. :)

Now it is your turn.....how do you store your buttons?

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

And the winner is....

And now, the winner of a free seat to the brand new online class, "Cricut: Crafting with Vinyl" with Shirley Pando is.....

I have tried using chipboard on my Cricut and have not been successful. I even used the heavy duty blade. I would love to be able to do more with chipboard.
Congratulations, Tigerberry, please email us at support.mcc@gmail.com so we can get you into class right away.


If you didn't win, there's plenty of time to register for class. CLICK HERE TO REGISTER.  I hope to "see" you there! ;-)

Remember that during the month of March at My Creative Classroom we are celebrating National Craft Month where you can earn free seat(s) to our online classes. Click here to find out about National Craft Month

Button Love

Got to love the theme of buttons
Almost every crafter will have a few buttons in our stash to use as a decorative element on our projects.  Did you ever think about the history of buttons?  Recently I read a book titled Button(ware) by Amy Barickman that gave me a whole new attitude to buttons.  The pages of her book are packed with colourful inspiring projects using buttons in all kinds of new ways.
In our house the button jar was like a little treasure box for my mother who's childhood was rationed through WWII and grandmothers of the depression era. Those were times when their stash of buttons were salvaged and recycled many times.  The City of London is also home to Pearly kings and queens that decorated their outfits with pearl buttons. Mum was very fond of their local Pearly and many of her childhood stories included funny games they would play or how they lead the community to care for reach other.

Reading Amy's button book I was blown away to learn buttons have been around since the beginning of time but mostly as a decoration or embellishment. It was not until the 13th century Europeans invented the buttonhole as a way of securing clothing. wow, cavemen invented the wheel but it took centuries to figure out how to make a buttonhole work?
Vintage buttons are sometime little works of art that use high end materials including gold and silver set with jewels and highly collectable. In Europe they call collective of craftsmen and artists a Guild and there was even a special guild for buttonmakers. The industrial revolution brought early versions of plastics and many more options for affordable buttons for everyone.

Now our local haberdashery stores are stocked with all kinds of beautiful buttons in unique shapes and colours.   Toggles for your Paddington Bear page, little airplanes or train shapes for a project with a travel theme and too many cute little flowers to choose from.

Many project challenges use colour themes and this is where I always find and excuse to add a button and paint.  With a little splash of colour little white buttons can take on a whole new life and be the perfect embellishment to finish off a challenge project.
The team here at My Creative Classroom love seeing what you are working on and invite you to share with us your button themed projects. 

You can see more of my work (usually with a button or two) here on My Creative Classroom and my Pinterest board and more recently a fun e-book that Catherine Matthews Scanlon and I have just published on Issuu.

Looking forward to seeing what you are getting up to with your button collection soon.

Mandy Collins


Monday, March 17, 2014

March 17th Topic....Buttons!

Happy Monday!

Shirley did a wonderful job taking care of the blog last week while I was on spring break.  But it is good to be back and it is time for a brand new topic.  This week we will be focusing on BUTTONS.

Buttons are one of my all time favorite crafting item.  They are so versatile and come in so many colors, styles and sizes.

This week I will be focusing solely on scrapbooking.  I had hoped to get a layout done each week....but I have fallen behind.  Maybe I will even get two layouts done. :)

Do you love buttons too?  What will you be working on this week?

Friday, March 14, 2014

This week's projects and a mini blog hop!

Did you get a chance to make anything using tags this week? I have a few things to share.

Check out my blog:
  Creative Arts with Shirley Pando
for a few cards I made this week...one using a tag



and a second one here on a different post
make sure to help me with this card...head to my blog and you'll understand.;-)


Here's a super elegant tag by MCC instructor, Donna Maligno. I just love that black lace and I'm a sucker for a postage stamp!


I also want to share a scrapbook layout that includes tags that I made for one of my online classes at My Creative Classroom, Cricut: Scrapbooking Through the Year, that I teach with Cara Miller and Karen Hunter.

My photo will go in the yellow area with the green frame and "Mom" title on top. The tags below can house journaling, more photos, or embellishments.


Don't forget about my online class giveaway...comment ON THIS POST. Giveaway ends Monday March 17th at midnight and winner is announced Tuesday March 18th.

Have a great weekend!

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Mission: Organization!

Hello Wednesday, Shirley here! Today we talk about organization.  Your mission, should you choose to accept it, is to organize those tags.

Some of you may want to keep them visible so you'll remember to use them. (Out of sight, out of mind, right?) Others, like me, have way too much stuff to have everything visible all the time. Maybe you store them in boxes, or pockets , or trays, or on a book ring.

Check out our Pinterest Organization Board. Below I share two organization photos from the board that are my favorite. 

This is such a cute tray storage idea, below. It makes me want to collect pretty tags like this! I like the cellophane wrappings, too!

This adorable dress form is from an ETSY seller, BlissfulElements. But of course it is sold already. I think I may "need" one of these!


My storage is no way as cute as the ones above, but I'll have to be grateful that I have stuff and a space to put it all, right? ;-)  I store my tags in a frosted clear lidded box that measures 10.5" x 9" x 8" deep on a shelf in my art studio. I feel more like an artist if I call it a studio! ;-)

Inside the big box are tags in bags and boxes and some loose tags. I will admit to reorganizing the box before taking photos! There are Avery brand manila tags I've purchased, cork tags, wood tags, die cut tags, tags I've distressed with tea and walnut ink and many more. I even have tags from clothing that were just too darn cool to throw away. I'll use them someday, I really will! :-)

Also in that box is another little box with little tags...round, oval, long and skinny ones, too. Again, I do admit to a little organizing before taking the photo!

How do you store your tags? Do you have a super cute way. Please let us know so we can be cute AND functional, too. :-)


Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Online class giveaway!

Hi, I'm Shirley Pando, instructor at My Creative Classroom and part of the website support team. In fact, if you email the MCC help desk (support.mcc@gmail.com), I'm the person you'll hear back from. :-)

For each of the first four months of 2014 I'm introducing another brand new online Cricut class:

I call these mini classes, but if you  know me you know I don't do anything in a "mini" way. All my classes are packed to the gills, and these will be no different. A lesser price, sure, but no less info and projects. You just can't lose! :-)

Our third class in the series, "Cricut: Crafting with Vinyl", begins on Monday March 24th. and I'd love for you to join me.

Course Description

There are loads of ways you can use your Cricut machine to create projects with vinyl and vinyl-like materials. Choose a self-adhesive product in just about any color or pattern. Put it on your walls, a glass votive, or an artist canvas. You can even cut an image
with heat transfer vinyl in either a matte or fuzzy texture and iron it onto a fabric item like a T-shirt or tote bag. The possibilities are almost endless.

In this class, students will l
earn how to cut adhesive vinyl, contact paper, heat transfer vinyl, and flocked heat transfer vinyl and create a project with each of these materials. Students will receive downloadable Cricut Craft Room files for the various projects, but I'll also share tips on how I create my files. Lessons offer several project options!

Use any Cricut machine and any cartridge you own.
Students must have basic knowledge of their Cricut machine and the Cricut Craft Room (CCR).

Lessons Include:
  • Lesson 1: Introduction to Vinyl and Other Vinyl-Like Materials
  • Lesson 2: Adhesive Vinyl/Cricut Vinyl/Oracal 631 - Project #1: Subway Art Canvas (several options)
  • Lesson 3: Contact Paper - Project #2: Refrigerator Chalkboard/Menu Board
  • Lesson 4: Heat Transfer Vinyl and Flocked Heat Transfer Vinyl - Project #3: Your choice T-shirt, tote, etc.
The course materials and projects in this class are totally new and different from "Crafting with the Cricut: Beyond Paper".


Enter for your chance to win a FREE seat to the brand new class, "Cricut: Crafting with Vinyl".  There are three ways to participate in the Giveaway. Do all three and increase your chance of winning!

  1. Leave a comment on this post below and let me know what other type of materials you like to use with your Cricut...besides paper. Is there a super project you've made with fabric or chipboard? Let me know.
  2. For another chance to win, head to MY BLOG and follow me. Just click the little blue "Join This Site" button on the left column. If I see you in my list of followers, your name goes into the hat another time.
  3. Comment on ANY POST on my blog and get another chance...your name goes into the hat once again!
So what are you waiting for? It's as easy as 1, 2, 3! ;-)

This giveaway ends on Monday March 17th at midnight. I will post the winner on Tuesday March 18th...in plenty of time for class, March 24th! Already enrolled in class? No worries! If you are the lucky winner we'll refund your tuition.

Good Luck!

Monday, March 10, 2014

Punches: Projects #21 & 22

Happy Friday!

Ok....I know it is Monday, but for a moment let's pretend it is Friday. :)  Here are my punch projects!

Project #21: Note Card

I love the card....I think it will probably be one of my favorites for the year.  I know for some it is hard to focus on just one tool or product and that some of you find it limits your creativity.  For me it is the exact opposite.  I have never used the the postage stamp punch I used for this card and I really love the look.

Supplies:  Punches (circle and postage stamp), ink, stamps (background/unknown), card stock, pop-dots and baker's twine.

Project #22: Project Inspiration

Supplies: Punches, card stock and ribbon.

Thanks for stopping by,

March 10th Topic: Tags!

Happy Monday!

Hi, I'm Shirley Pando, instructor at My Creative Classroom and part of the website support team. In fact, if you email the MCC help desk (support.mcc@gmail.com), I'm the person you'll hear back from. :-)

 Jeri' is on vacation this week, spending a little more time with her son while he's on Spring Break from school, so I'll be filling in for her.

We have a brand new topic.  This week we will be exploring tags.

I love tags but it seems that I don't use them as often as I'd like. Once I pull them out, I remember how great they are. You can distress them, color them, stamp on them. They come in great shapes and color. You can make them or buy them. They are just so versatile.

Most all of us know about Tim Holtz's 12 tags of Christmas. Now he also does 12 tags of (fill in the holiday!) and 12 tags of (fill in the year!). Check out his blog and look at the categories list on the right hand side bar for loads of inspiration!

So come along and create with me this week using tags. What are some of your favorite ways to use tags?


Friday, March 7, 2014

Blog Hop-Punches!

Happy Friday!

It is time to talk punches.  This week two MCC instructors are joining me as we explore punches.  So today we are doing a punch blog hop.  I will be posting my projects this weekend.  Enjoy!

Check out Deena's beautiful card using negative punch space.

I love the fun and funky look of her punch border.  I am definitely going steal this idea. :)

Thanks for stopping by!

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Organizing: Punches

Hey Craft Lovers!

It is Wednesday....so it is time to talk about storage and organizing.  This weeks topic is punches. :)  I must admit my punches are scattered around my craft room.  My border punches are in the plastic cart pictured below.  My basics shape punches are stored on my work table and all other stamps are in a separate plastic cart.  This would seem not to work, but it does.  I don't have very many punches anymore so it is easy for me to remember what I have.

I did find a number of wonderful storage ideas online and I have added them to our Pinterest Board.  Most of them fall into two categories.....behind the door shoe racks or shelves with doles on them to hold the punches.

For me how I organize my stamps is not as important as knowing what I have, especially when it comes to my basic shapes because those get the most use.  Last year I make this set of templates so I would know if  a punch would work with a specific stamp or embellishment.

I punched each of my basic shapes into a thin piece of plastic and then I labeled them.  I used blank quilter's template material for my think plastic....which you can purchase in any fabric store or the fabric department in a craft store.  You probably could also use product packaging...just make sure it is not too thick.  This saves me so much time.  I have a large selection of stamps and sentiments that work with circles or ovals and I can size them up easily.

Now it is your turn.  Do you have any tips or tricks to share?

Monday, March 3, 2014

March 3rd Topic: Punches!

Happy Monday Morning!

We have a brand new topic.  This week we will be exploring paper punches.

If you have been paper crafting for long....then you know how popular punches were at one time.  This was before the advent of electronic die-cutting machines and other dies.  

I used to have a HUGE stash of punches, including letter punches.  Most of them are now gone.  I still have a collection of basic shapes, which I use all the time, and border/corner punches.

Do you love punches too?

Washi Tape Blog Hop!

I have one last catch-up post from last week.  Two MCC instructors also had Washi tape projects to inspire you.

Check out Karen's post for even more ideas for using Washi tape.

Check out all of Donna's cards using Washi tape.

Thanks for stopping by!

Sunday, March 2, 2014

February 28th: Projects #17-20

Hey Fellow Crafters,

Here is this Friday's post.  It includes my Washi tape projects and color/watercolor pencils.  I learned a lot the past two weeks.  I learned that I have much to learn regarding color pencils.....much to learn.  I will definitely be checking out Marie Browning's classes for additional help.

Project #17: Note Card Using Washi Tape
This was a fun card to create.  I found many examples of artists using Washi tape to fill in cut-outs.  I already had the base card, which I cut out using my Cricut.

Supplies: Card stock, Cricut (base card), stamp (Club Scrap), Prima Flowers, ink and brad.

Project #18: Project Inspiration-Using Washi Tape
I also discovered that Washi tape embosses very nicely.  I realize now that the fact that some Washi tape is also transparent adds a nice touch this project.  After embossing the two almost become one.

Supplies:  Card Stock, Washi tape, embossing folder and ink.

Project #19: Project Inspiration-Color Pencils.....Epic Fall
I have always promised to show you the good, the bad and the ugly.  This is NOT good.  I have a set of soft lead Prisma color pencils.  They are supposed to blend quick nicely.  I don't know it it was my blending solution or the pencils.  The colors also seemed to get muddy the more I tried to blend them. UGG!

Take Two:  After doing a little research I discovered that Prisma also makes a colorless blending pencil.  I purchased one and the results were much improved.  I still have much to learn, but I am making progress.

Supplies: Color Pencils (Prisma), stamps (Tim Holtz), ink and card stock.

Project #19: Project Inspiration-Watercolor Pencils
This is my watercolor Project Inspiration ATC card.  My 1st ATC board is almost full and I love the way it looks. :)

Supplies: Card stock, stamps (Tim Holtz), watercolor pencils and ink.

Thanks for stopping by,

Organizing: Washi Tape

It's time to organize!

First....I wanted to make a quick note.  Yes, these two posts are a bit late.  Thanks to everyone who sent me a note.  Somehow the week just slipped away.  I will endeavor not to let that happen again.

So let's catch up today!  This is the storage/organizing post.  I have updated the Pinterest MCL Organizing Board.  

I only have a small stash of Washi tape, so at this point it is in a plastic container.  Pretty boring!

But then I found this on Pinterest....I love it.  I am totally doing this and I even have the wall space for it.  I hope that being able to see what I have will help me from buying more.  At least I hope. :)