Thursday, June 30, 2011

lucky devil!

and now without further ado... according to the fine folks at, the winner of the "handsome devil" is:


so congratulations and a happy hooray to:


please contact me via llaurenb @ hotmail [dot] com with your snail mail address, so i can ship this little baby out to you ASAP! many thanks to everyone who played and especially for the cool APP suggestions which i LOVE!

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

hope is the thing with feathers...

...but... another thing with feathers is my version of this month's pixie dust paperie design team group project! pixie-in-chief kirsty vittetoe provided us with these cool 5" wooden embroidery hoops and told us to go crazy. so i did, see?

i based my entire project around the beautiful and whimsical feathers that came in this month's kit, SUMMER OF LOVE. the first thing i thought of when i saw them was my favorite emily dickinson quote, which i thought would make a nice mini wall hanging. i printed the text on a clear label, affixed it to some of the kit's gorgeous teresa collins paper, and hand-embroidered around word "hope" to make it stand out.

i "stained" the hoop black with a permanent marker; paper-pieced a clipart bird image with scraps from american crafts, pink paislee and more teresa collins, leftover from other projects this month; and finally layered on loads of embellies: a pebbles' pearl flourish, teresa collins lace, a gorgeous black gem, and finally the feathers that inspired everything else!

complete product list and kit details for SUMMER OF LOVE in the pixie shoppe; more "hoop dreams" (lol) on the pixie blog! ♥

Monday, June 27, 2011

hey, leslie!!! ♥♥♥!

ok, i'm a bit embarrassed, here: my lovely blogging friend ♥leslie has been on the DT of the fabulous shopping our stash challenge blog for agggggggggges now, and even though i marvel at her creations--and the very clever & creative prompts they give us--each week, this is the first time i am participating! but better late than never, right?! this time (#5) the brief is to use a neglected or unopened tool, for which i cop sheepishly to the latter. i excitedly bought one of these cool BHS multi-shaper magnetic punches several months ago, and then promptly froze whilst reading the instructions. as it turns out, of course, it's VERY easy to use, once you take the thing out of its packaging and just try it!!! thank you leslie & friends for making me do that at last!!! :)

in combination, i've also worked in...or i think i did... city crafter's current challenge you're number one; re-reading the instructions i realize we were supposed to use the numeral one or the word "first" on our projects. i've used the word "one". so i may not quite qualify, which is ok! in any case, i thank miss cheryl and the ladies for getting me started!!!

finally, i used this gorgeous sketch from simon says stamp challenge blog:

...but... i didn't actually stamp on my card. reading the rules, i don't think one HAS TO; if i'm wrong about that, again, i will happily disqualify myself and thank them for the sketch!

ok, so after all that, here's my card, hooray!

(vintage: book paper; patterned paper & transparency: glitz designs; cardstock: core'dinations; cardstock diecuts: k&co; dimensional cupcake sticker: mambi; flower stickers: sticko; gem circle: heidi swapp; film strip tape & distress inks: tim holtz; brads: my mind's eye; labels: dymo; circle border punch: bhs; straight border punch: recollections; ink: colorbox; adhesives: tombow monorunner, uhu gluestick, 3m foam tape, sewing machine)

ps: scroll down and enter my fun amigurumi dragon giveaway, if you like amigurumi... or dragons... or giveaways... ♥♥♥!

Saturday, June 25, 2011

"banner day" birthday card

it's hard to believe that i'm already showing my last project from june's pixie dust paperie kit, SUMMER OF LOVE... where exactly did this month *GO*?

this might be my favorite card of the whole month, though, actually; it was definitely the most fun to make:

i stenciled and misted and sewed the fun star background... (which, being tone-on-tone-on-tone, doesn't show up as well as i'd like in the photo, but is quite cool irl) ...then i paper-pieced and hand-embroidered the cupcake... and then i WENT NUTS with the fabulous sassafras flag banner stickers in the kit! well, you get an entire 12x12 sheet of 'em, so i could afford to go crazy; i used a few on maddie's gift bag, as well, and i still have two-thirds of the sheet leftover!

more details on the pixie blog, where it's well worth scrolling through the rest of this month's GORGEOUS pixie goodness!!! :)

Friday, June 24, 2011

JB26: opus gluei in the house!!! :)

as you may have noticed, we ♥JINGLE BELLES♥ are happiest on the weeks when we can invite our friends along to hang out with us! this week is especially cool since stef and i have teamed up with rosemary and jana at the order of the opus gluei for a special "crossover event"!

this week we're making tags AND cards, and you've got a shot at not one but TWO fab prizes if you make both and link them up at both places!!! awesome, right?! catch the details at JB or OG!

here's my card:

(btw, i used LAST WEEK's sketchy thursday sketch on all my items, it totally rocks!!!)
and my tag:

and here's a little EXTRA something i whipped up whilst i had all my gloriously well-hoarded "love elsie" pink and green goodness out:

yep, it's one of those 12 x 10 x 4" document boxes they sell in the "plain wood stuff" section of michaels.

i’m VERY happy with this thingie, partially because I think it's really “ME” but also because, for weeks and weeks, my gorgeous collection of JINGLE BELLE inspired holiday cards has been housed in a large *TUPPERWARE* container ...since it was the only thing big enough to hold them all!!! but i’ve been craving a prettier storage solution, and WOOHOO, here it is!!!

(supplies for this set: patterned paper: love elsie & ki memories, dcwv, recollections; chipboard embellies: fancy pants; giant (antique!!!) monogram letters: ki memories; diecut cardstock borders: k&co; flowers & pebble: prima; stickers: oriental trading & dcwv; border punch: recollections; labels: dymo; metallic embroidery floss: dmc; fibers: basic grey; inks: colorbox, stewart superior; wooden box: michaels; adhesives: xyron, tombow monorunner, 3m foam tape, glue dots, aleene's fast grab tacky glue & sewing machine)

and finally, here's a group shot with box, card, and tag all posing prettily in their coordinated "outfits"! i hope you'll hop on over to JINGLE BELLES by next wednesday and "tag along" for a chance to ♥WIN♥!!!

(oh yeah and scroll down for my latest ami giveaway... it's devilishly good, if i do say so m'self!) :)

Thursday, June 23, 2011

APP-solutely ♥devilish♥ amigurumi giveaway!

it's been too long since we've had an amigurumi giveaway, dontcha think?! so let's have one NOW!!! this handsome devil was made with an excellent & easy-to-follow pattern from simple arts planet:

i did the crocheting on my california trip, the finishing on our drive down to visit LHJ's parents, and the mouth sitting on my couch last night. the backdrop in the photo is made of harley-davidson papers that i brought to make a card for my b-i-l; the little toolbox is from home depot and intended to hold a giftcard... i'm planning to put little candies in it for nephew matthew's birthday. don't ask me why i thought these items would make for a nice picture, but i did. i also have AC/DC's "highway to hell" stuck in my head now. go figure.

at the moment, my favorite thing in the world is my early-birthday-present ♥i-phone♥, so to be eligible for the giveaway, howsabout you leave me a comment recommending your favorite APP? if you don't "do" apps, you can leave me a link to a blog or website, instead; or if you're realllllllly old skool, you can tell me a book you love. although if you're THAT old skool, it's hard to see what you'd be reading this post on! :)

enter as many times as you like, we'll keep this open until... let's say wednesday, june 29th at midnight? and i'll announce the winner (via random draw) on the 30th.

♥good luck, darlings!♥

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

i think you'll agree...

...i'm a formidable master of disguise... :)

& yeah, i've got eyes on your burger*
consider yourself warned, ok?!


*your fries/chips might also be at risk. especially the really crispy ones. just sayin'... ;)

Monday, June 20, 2011

june pixie challenge

this month's pixie challenge is a bit of a change-up, pixie-in-chief kirsty vittetoe has set us a photo inspiration, we can make any sort of project we'd like using whatever aspects of these photos speak to us:

i set myself the further challenge of only using items leftover from my various pixie dust kits, because despite the fact that i make at least six projects every month--and you KNOW i am not shy about piling on the product, lol!--i've still got tons of things remaining in every category: cardstock, patterned paper, embellishments, ribbon, etc; because these are some seriously GENEROUS kits!

so here's my card:

i used blue cardstock and blue-misted pink paislee patterned paper to capture the cerulean in the photo; i've got a gorgeous glitz design rub-on frame serving as a "window" and loads of grunged and layered diecut flowers spilling out from it; the frame and a bunch of free-form machine stitched swirls are standing in for the wrought-iron flourish; and a vintage greyish monotone photo is standing in for the concrete cherub in the style board. i confess to "sneaking in" the pink sticky-back pearls from my own stash. because flowers NEED centers, and cards need texture, and grungy flowers need elegant pearls, imo! :)

so i *THINK* i covered all the bases. but really the best part was playing around with all of the elements in the photos and seeing how many of those i could incorporate while using things i HAD... and my own sort of funky style... to make something cool.

won't you come along and have a go? we'd love to see what you come up with, and as always on the pixie blog, there's a cool prize up for grabs to one lucky participant! this challenge runs until july 5th; complete info in today's pixie post!

Saturday, June 18, 2011

PDP-cameo card

the SUMMER OF LOVE kit is--as all pixie dust paperie kits are--full of deliciousness! here's a glimpse of some of the lovelies inside:

you can see right away there are gorgeous "posh" teresa collins papers and trimmings, pebbles' felt roses, whimsical feathers, glamorous crystal stick-pins, awesome heidi swapp acrylic embellishments and some divine crinkly signature pixie seambinding. there's actually loads more, as well, but those are some of my favorites this month and i've managed to work most of them into one sliiiiiiiiiightly heavy card!

luckily this rather bulky (but in a GOOD way, lol) birthday card is for my sister, and i can just hand it to her, along with her present; however it must be said that i am well known at the post office as the lady who mails A LOT of birthday cards in padded jiffy mailers, and that is fine with me, too! :)

more photos on the pixie blog today, including one of the DECORATED INSIDE... a concept almost unknown in the laurniverse!!!
enjoy, darlings!

Friday, June 17, 2011

JB25: all bundled up

this week at ♥JINGLE BELLES♥ our lovely guest star candy blake of stampin' with candy has invited us to be "all bundled up" by making cards with as many layers as possible. awesome, no??! we're stipulating that you must have at least *3* layers, but the sky is the limit, you can take this as far as you'd like, in any direction that appeals to you!

i used a sketch i found at allison fillo's blog, stampin' when i can. i love that she compiles ALL the great sketches each week, because when you're trying to do something specific... (like, saaaaaay, make a "many-layered" card!)'s a real time-saver! this one is from a blog called "try stampin' on tuesdays" ...don't you just LOVE the name? i did not, in fact, use any stamps, and i missed the deadline; but that does not dim my admiration or gratitude for their cool sketch:

here's my card:

(patterned paper: creative imaginations, k&co, autumn leaves, love elsie + vintage xmas card & poem from ideals magazine; diecut snowflake border: k&co; epoxy holly stickers: around the block; stacked chipboard "joy": creative imaginations; inks: colorbox; adhesives: tombow monorunner, uhu gluestick, 3m foam tape, sewing machine)

i reckon i've got 11 layers just of paper and cardstock here, and then if you count the sentiment, border and stickers i'm up to 14; but if we get realllllly creative and count techniques like inking and sewing... just call me SWEET SIXTEEN, baby!!! :)

so can you *beat* that? eh??! or maybe you'll go the other direction and show me how cooooooooool your own "bundled" card is with only the requisite three. it's up to you, just get creative, HAVE FUN, and link up at jingle belles by 6pm next wednesday! ♥♥♥

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

happy (early) father's day!

due to lovely husband jeff's work schedule next week, and a couple of other commitments this past weekend, we actually celebrated father's day LAST weekend. we went down to his parents' house in maryland, took them out for a nice lunch, and for ice cream*, and just generally had a great visit.

obviously, i made a card. because it's WHAT I DO!!! (& photo-ed it with great mediocrity b/c THAT'S what i do, too!) (sigh) :)

(patterned paper: mustard moon, prima paintables; cardstock, chipboard and regular stickers: dover, sassafras, k&co, girls' paperie, heidi swapp; vintage-look items: the ephemera book; paper clip: making memories; crown: tim holtz; inks: ranger & colorbox; adhesives: tombow monorunner, 3m foam & double-stick tape, diamond glaze, sewing machine)

i am quite pleased with this one, although i confess that i started out with a very different plan that changed completely when i found this cool knight in a dover sticker book i got at a garage sale. the background is an old prima paintable that i have enhanced with distress inks, mostly around the edges b/c the sticker has a border of white. the rest of the embellies are a mishmash of stash-based goodness including the exceedingly elderly mustard moon "phone book" paper that i bought in every color and still adore, perhaps all the moreso, as my supply dwindles.

we took a present along, as well, that i'm only showing because i'm proud of the RIBBON INNOVATION i thought up at the verrrrrrrry last minute:

YES! that *IS* a strip of denim that i snipped and tore from the leg of an old pair of jeans i saved to use for sewing essperiments. i LOVE how it looks and seriously it took like 3 seconds to do! expect to see denim popping up again at some point... i think i may be starting a new obsession... ♥♥♥

*secretly, although my f-i-l LIKES ice cream, when we visit, i believe he mostly *pretends* to have the massive craving that is my default state, just to be gallant, so that we can go to the local dairy he knows that i love. which kind of gives you an idea whence lovely husband jeff's loveliness comes, doesn't it?! :)

Saturday, June 11, 2011

♥MADDIE♥ gift bag

i think pretty much everybody has sussed by now that i looooooove fancy gift-wrapping generally, and that i make A LOT of fancy gift bags. to me they're yet another great way to use our paper-crafting supplies, (especially our pixie dust paperie kits--this one was made with the gorgeous stuff in the SUMMER OF LOVE kit!) and i love that i can make something just as cool... and infinitely more PERSONAL... than the expensive store-bought ones.

here's my latest gift bag effort, it's for niece madeline, as you'll've guessed from the photo. :)

sometimes people wonder at the thought of making such a fancy bag, seeing as it'll only be used once. well, for one thing, i really do *LOVE* making them; but also, i have a little secret i am happy to reveal to my fellow crafty types... it's on the pixie blog today... check it out if you have a minute! :) :) :)

Friday, June 10, 2011

JB24: gettin' sketchy again!

i know you already know this, but three things i really realllllllllly ♥LOVE♥ are: card sketches, JINGLE BELLES, and pixie dust paperie! so how excited am i that this week all three come together thanks to the talent and generosity of my dear pixie-in-chief kirsty vittetoe, who is not only providing this week's fabulous jingle belles sketch...

...she's also sponsoring this week's prompt!

yep, there's a $15.00 gift certificate to the PIXIE SHOPPE up for grabs to one lucky cardmaker. and *ALL* jingle belles can take advantage of TWO awesome and exclusive coupon codes:

50% off the christmas-themed SNOW SHOE kit when you use the code "jingle-belles"

25% off the december, january, febuary and march pixie kits when you use the code "christmas-in-june"!

how's THAT for bargains, eh? thank you miss kirsty, you have certainly done us proud!!! ♥♥♥ of course, apart from anything else, the sketch itself is a corker, don't you think? i had a blast making my card, and i'm really pleased with it:

(patterned paper & chipboard button: love elsie, sei, the paper co; cardstock: core'dinations; bingo card: jenni bowlin; tag: american crafts; ribbon & cardstock sticker: my mind's eye; baker's twine: pixie dust paperie; floral: michaels; adhesives: tombow monorunner, 3m foam tape; gluedots, sewing machine)

be sure to hop over to JINGLE BELLES and check out stef's gorgeous card, and of course kirsty's beautiful one, as well! then print out that sketch and GET CRACKIN' with your own fabulous masterpiece by next wednesday, june 15th!!!!!!! :)

Thursday, June 9, 2011

the same, but different

you may remember the superheroes birthday card i posted recently, which relied heavily on one of my favorite all-time my mind's eye papers? well, luckily, i purchased several sheets of that, and can now definitively report that it works equally well when rotated 90 degrees and placed behind just one superhero. see?

(spiderman stickers: sandylion; patterned paper: my mind's eye; ta da creative studios; glitter paper: dcwv; glossy black cardstock & plastic letters: ranger; glitter chip letters: anna griffin holiday collection--probably the only time they will ever share billing with spiderman! ;) inks: colorbox; adhesives: tombow monorunner, 3m foam tape, sewing machine)

this card is for my young friend carlos, who is a big fan of spiderman. i bought a large sheet of sandylion's licensed spiderman stickers, and used ALL of them--inside the card, on the back, and upon the envelope; unfortunately, being a ninny, i forgot to photo the rest, so you'll just have to trust me: they were CUTE!

the largest one can be seen here, on the front of the card, with three of his arachnoid friends. it was not until after i had made --and mailed-- the card, that it occurred to me that it might be possible for a four-year-old person to simultaneously LOVE spiderman and also be afraid of *spiders*; so i wrote and warned his mama; but luckily it turned out ok and they loved the card! but i relate the story as one of those "lessons learned" thingies; and next time i would probably leave the little hairy dudes off the card! :)

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

tea for two!

i realize that mother's day has come and gone, but we pixies are always working a month AHEAD, so my project today is a pair of pretty cards i've already sent to my mother and mother-in-law. see those flower bouquets sitting in their teacups? well the flowers are sassafras dimensional diecuts, and if you pull them straight up, they slide out of the cup to reveal a little message. mine happen to be mother's day greetings, but you could use the same idea for a graduation, a birthday, or even a get well card!

the idea for these came partially from this clever card that the lovely june made last month... with a little bit of a lauren twist... and ingredients from this month's awesome pixie dust paperie kit, SUMMER OF LOVE, which looks like this:

you can read more about the making of these cards, see additional photos--including the "insides" of the cups, learn more about our kits, and even enter a fabulous giveaway... ALL on the pixie blog, of course. check it out, darlings! ♥

Sunday, June 5, 2011

CCCB- back to basics!

ths week over at the city crafter challenge blog, my lovely friend ros is asking us to go "back to basics" by incorporating some paint (acrylic or watercolor) AND some recycled cardboard into our projects. meanwhile, at skipping stones design, where the fabulous miss amy is ROCKIN' the cards, they've given us a rather divine sketch #78:
with all that inspiration, how could i possibly go wrong??!

(blue cardstock: core'dinations; black glossy cardstock: ranger; plain white cardstock: staples; foam alphas: american crafts; stamp: hero arts; inks: ranger & colorbox; adhesives: tombow monorunner, sewing machine; other: cardboard from a bit of packaging, staples, watercolor paints)

it's not often i start out with a sheet of nekkid white cardstock, but i was in the mood to play, so i got out my watercolors, made a couple of quick die-cut heart masks, a text stamp (from a cool set that june gave me & i don't use enough!) and some distress inks and just fiddled around for a bit and this whole card just sort of materialized surprisingly quickly!

and now that i'm in "paint mode" i wouldn't mind taking those watercolors for another spin, but this time... i think i'll go PINK... :)

Saturday, June 4, 2011

happy mail... i ♥ it!

there's nothing quite as cool as opening one's mailbox and finding a wonderful ♥SURPRISE♥ is there? and i've had a couple of especially nice ones recently!

my lovely friend linda, who knew i was quietly coveting a couple of new tim holtz masks, after taking jen starr's class of inky goodness (of which i shall post more, later!) sent them along, with one of her AMAZING and beautiful tags:

speaking of tim-based goodness, miss marisol suspected i'd love to play with this cool re-arrangable mini printer's tray... & she was so right! :) oh and there are cool heavy, inkable, dangly wall panels for me to go crazy on, too; as well as what i secretly feel might be the MOST GORGEOUS of mari's beautiful fairy cards:

and then there is the very clever amanda, who not only ROCKED the felt with this adorable bumble bee... and quite possibly found the BEST USE EVER for some lovely vintage buttons (!!!); she also sent me a selection of very cool "smash" goodies which i've been seeing around t'internet and quietly lusting for:

and now i know you will excuse me, since CLEARLY i have a lot of playing that needs to be done RIGHT NOW, lol!!! do feel free to talk amongst yourselves, i may be some time! :) meanwhile, may i say, to the ladies in question:

thank you,
thank you,
thank you,

Friday, June 3, 2011

JB23: let it sew, let it sew, let it sew!

eagle-eyed JINGLE BELLES who peruse the blog via a reader may have noticed there was a bit of a premature post situation on wednesday afternoon when a certain silly someone (-->ME!<--) in the course of putting the finishing touches on today's post, and being under the (-->INCORRECT!<--) impression she had already set the date for midnight, 6-3-11, hit "publish" and the whole thing went live. embarrassing??!?! ummmmmmm, YEAH! sorry folks, i apologize.

well, anyway, if you got a little bit of a head start then it's all the more reason to come along and PLAY, right? and if not, lemme just say that this week's theme--perhaps quite obviously from my post title--is to incorporate a bit of sewing into our holiday cards. you can hand-stitch, embroider, use the old sewing machine, or even add a bit of faux stitching by pen or rub-ons or... whatever!

here's my card:

(patterned paper: k&co, paper company, core'dinations + vintage sheet music; stickers: stick-o; poinsettia button: michaels; ribbon: american crafts; embroidery floss: dmc; alphabet dies: cuttlebug; adhesives: tombow monorunner, uhu gluestick, sewing machine)

as you can see, i've covered a few bases: there's machine stitching around the perimeter of my card; hand-cranked machine stitching around the "merry"; and i've embroidered a computer font again (using this method) to get "christmas" on there. sew far... sew good, right?!!! :)

and now i cannot wait to see what you will do this week! just remember to link up over at JINGLE BELLES before 6pm next wednesday, so we can come and admire your handiwork! ♥

Thursday, June 2, 2011

are these the worst pics EVER??!?!

yeah, possibly. (sorry!)

my justification/excuse is: banners are HARD to photograph at the best of times! add to that the total absence of a 6 foot stretch of straight, unadorned wall in my house; and the fact that i brilliantly waited until 9pm on the night before i needed to mail this thing. so yeah--the pictures *STINK* but please allow me the vanity of saying that irl, this is an adorable project and not even terribly difficult to make; and although there's quite a bit of cutting, it's not particularly fussy. you may recall i made a similar project for nephew matthew in the fall, and this is roughly the same procedure, but i'll re-cap.

for my "paper piecing" patterns i used a digital set called kiddie conveyance from designer digitals, which sadly seems to have gone out of print, but you could use any set of digital vehicles, or even an iron-on pattern or a coloring book! the important thing is to find some not-too-complicated cars and trucks you like, and format them to a good "banner size" (mine range from 3" to 6" wide; the tallest is about 5"). i printed them onto plain cardstock which i used to cut the pieces from my patterned papers.

when i had all the bases put together it was time to embellish: i used varying sizes of circle punch for wheels, with brads and epoxies for hubcabs.

i used some old basic grey chipboard monograms to spell carlos' name; each has had a couple of quick coats of black acrylic craft paint with glossy sealer on top.

this "banner" is actually a little bit of a cheat: because i elected to use all different sizes and shapes of car, there is not a natural "balance" that lets it hang properly from the ribbon to which i have sturdily hot glued it by sandwiching the patterned cards with plain black cardstock backs. if you want a "real" banner, choose one car, cut out as many as you need to spell the child's name, and affix a letter to each!

in this case, i just informed carlos' mom of the "design flaw" and sent along a pack of aileen's craft tack to stabilize each letter when she hangs it on his wall! :)

and now, having reached the end of the banner, coincidentally, my post is done, too. nice how that worked out, isn't it?


Wednesday, June 1, 2011

what's a "business card purse"?

it's one of these, o'course! i think i might have invented it! :)

i made this one with the june pixie dust paperie kit, SUMMER OF LOVE. it's for my sister amie, who's an "initials inc" consultant; she sells their gorgeous line of personalized and monogrammed handbags, totes and accessories online and at home parties, so obviously she NEEDS a little purse-shaped box in which to keep her business cards, right?!

there are more details and pics on the pixie blog today, i hope you'll enjoy seeing them as well as the full list of fabulous supplies and goodies in the cool new kit!