3D Thursday: Easter Pillow Boxes

Pillow boxes. An ‘in and out of fashion’ item, I think, for crafters. Actually I don’t know if they are in or out right now, but I do know I was for some reason possessed by all the devils of craft to make some this week.

I was also convinced that somewhere I had an one on an embossing board – crafters will know what I mean. A big slab of some science-y compound or resin or such, with grooves and channels to score the lines, to then be cut out.

A craft hunt! Hurrah! I NEVER do one of those, right?? So, donning crampons and grabbing belaying thingies I tackled the craft mountain. Like A-ha, I hunted high and low but could not find a scoring board. BUT, after a bit of pondering and some much needed Kendal Mint Cake I remembered an ancient purchase, back when the internet was in short trousers, of a bunch of Anna Griffin templates. Back to the north face! The templates had survived their spell in the wilderness and I could get going. Of course I could have downloaded one, or used my Cricut, but you know how it is when you get a bee in your bonnet. Oh, no, I have just reminded myself of the bridesmaid bonnets. On reflection I am quite surprised we weren’t attacked by a swarm of bees, actually, mistakenly thinking we were a good pollen source…

Anyhoo, back to the pillow boxes. I used quite a few things on these. The base is an old pad of Kanban card and the rabbit is from my Rabbit’s Tea Party digikit. The other bits and pieces are just from stash.

easter pillow box paireaster pillow box spottyeaster pillow box floral

I know the ribbon has fallen in a rather unfortunate place on this one – I only noticed after I had taken the photos!! I’ll go fix it…..

 

 

 

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I blame Doris Day. And Julia Roberts.

Little gift bags. Don’t you love them? I do, slightly to the point of obsession, in truth. I think it is due to all those movies where you see someone out on a shopping spree. We watch a montage bit, with nods and smiles to the shop staff, an impromptu catwalk show for one and some uplifting ‘what good fun this is’ music. Then the immaculately dressed star appears tripping daintily along with an unwieldy haul of beautifully presented packages, boxes and bags.

Real life isn’t like that. Doris and Julia didn’t shop in the rain, having forgotten their umbrella, thus ending up with lank hair plastered to their heads and a whiff of damp wool or anorak about them. Or with a streaming cold that made their nose go red and render them nearly incomprehensible to the assistant. They didn’t have to lug badly made plastic carrier bags that, once stuffed with your practical purchases, weigh a ton and cut into your hands. Only you didn’t realised this was happening because your hands are so darn cold (your gloves are with your umbrella, at home, in the warm) you have lost most of the feeling anyway. Doris and Julia didn’t have to choose sensible shoes over kitten or stiletto heels because the hours of tramping the aisles or pounding the pavement would make their pretty ankles swell like swiss rolls. Theirs was a very different shopping experience, one I am yet to emulate.

Aaaaanyway, back to the reason for the rambling. I have made a simple card and gift bag using the same stamp. I have had this La Blanche stamp for years and love the fine detail of it, but am not much of a one for the traditional sunflower colours so decided to go for grey and black.

sunflower-bag-and-card-1

My fabulous WRMK Gift Bag Punch Board was used to make the bag from plain white card, which I punched and scored to see where the panels would fall, but did not assemble. This meant I knew where I needed to position the stamp to get it bang on the front. I also die cut ovals to make the handles, then a larger oval frame from black to reinforce them. And to make the bag fancier! Then I went mad and blinged up a small wooden peg with holographic gold tape from The Works. Doris and Julia don’t get all the fun!

To make the card a bit more interesting I just cut a section of the image from the bottom and layered onto black mats. An old trick but it works a treat! The oval shape for the stamped sentiment is the one I cut from the gift bag, to tie everything in, hopefully nicely. And a few pale orange Nuvo Drops for a tiny splash of colour.

 

3D Thursday: not Teas-day then?

Gift wrapping is an obsession for me. Not to the extent it used to be before I got into paper crafting, but still, any present I am giving has to look good or I, and it, cannot leave the house. I don’t always go to these lengths for every gift, but I do like to have a small stash of interesting and/or pretty bags, boxes or other containers on hand. Things that will hold a couple of those hand creams that look like tubes of paint, maybe a pot or two of nail colour or some makeup. Or even tea, come to think of it! Things that are a pain to wrap, or seem more like a pampering gift if they are presented together.

This tea cup was made using my new-ish Cricut. I still haven’t played with it all that much so I’ll do a mini review some other time, but as I had the Tags, Bags, Boxes & More 2 cartridge I figured I would browse through that for a suitable 3D project. This cartridge is jam-packed with exactly what it says – boxes, bags and tags, and I chose the tea cup.

There were a couple of teething problems (and three wasted sheets of good cardstock) before I got the cutting achieved. I will say here and now that I did not help this situation. I don’t have things set out very well at the moment: you need to use your pc/laptop with the Cricut Explore and currently my Cricut is positioned behind my desktop screen, so I keep having to walk between the two to follow the steps. Once I sort this out I expect it will go a lot more smoothly! Another issue was that this image required use of a scoring tool first, but I couldn’t actually see that mentioned on the screen anywhere. I may have missed it in all the wandering about of course. Anyway eventually I worked it out and I got what, I have to say, is a great cut, and in my opinion much better than I achieved on my old Cricut. Cue the happy dance.

Construction is pretty obvious, although you have two different sized circles and had to work out which was for the cup base and which for the saucer. The physical cartridge came with an assembly guide, and again I couldn’t see this on my screen anywhere, but I am sure you can get help with the more complicated shapes from Cricut’s site or YouTube if you need it. For my plain white test run version (should really have done this first rather than waste pretty card) I used the large circle for the saucer and smaller for the tea cup, but it should have been the other way around. Obvious, really, but there you go…

When I felt I knew what I was doing I moved on to a spotty Tim Holtz paper. It was a bit of a struggle to get the larger circle to fit the tea cup properly and in the end I just stuck it on and trimmed it down once dry. This worked fine and has given a neat finish so no worries.

Now for some decoration. I have cut into some doilies and snipped out the centre circle to give me a curly strip. This is stuck to the inside of the cup and underside of the saucer using double sided tape, pleating it as I go to make a frill. This also helps to ease it in and cover up where you join the next strip.

If I had more time I might have added flowers or something, but the deadline is upon me and 3D Thursday cannot run over to Friday. It’s the law. I made do with a little tea cup shaped tag I cut from the reverse of the Tim Holtz paper with a Spellbinders nesting die set.

Typically the only tissue paper I could find was spotty red, but actually I like the contrast. Sorry it is a bit wrinkled but I don’t crave blogging photographic perfection enough to get the iron out.

These are great for favours, or a shower, or work colleagues for Christmas, and they look really cute if you make lots in different colours and patterns and pile them together. Cellophane or large cello bags (the kind we put cards into) are also really handy if you want to have them all enclosed but still want to show them off. And of course you don’t need a cutting machine to make paper or card tea cups, there are plenty of templates available.

 

 

 

 

3D Thursday: something advent-agious?

A few days ago a friend told me she had bought herself an advent calendar with a difference. Instead of pictures, or chocolates, it would give her daily presents of a favourite cosmetic brand. I have to confess to a touch of the green-eyed monster here as it is also made by one of my favourite brands, but at nearly £70 including delivery it is not in the budget for this year.

However, the idea of a daily treat for adults through December sounded pretty attractive. Why should the kids have all the good stuff? I think it would be fun to make an advent calendar for your other half, sister, brother, parent(s) or friend. Anyone, really!

So I pulled out my Tonic Advent Treat Squeeze Box die set. I have had this for a long time now – from whenever it first came out, I think. It is one of my all-time favourites, and still available. The box takes moments to make and all the recipient has to do is gently squeeze two opposite corners for the treat to fall from the bottom. And of course you can keep them plain or gussy up as much as you like.

squeeze-box-tgrio

If I am meeting girlfriends for lunch at Christmas I will make a few up and load them with a swanky truffle or wrapped sweets. You can also use them for small gift items such as makeup or jewellery, but maybe not for anything too precious as one squeeze and it could be lost! Also you don’t need to confine their use to Christmas or Advent: just leave the numbers out and you have year round table favours or dinner party treats, or just gift wrap. I have seen them, or something similar, made into Santa, or Rudolph, or a bee, a pig, a cow…Pinterest has loads of ideas for novelty triangular boxes.

This one is the simplest. Just gold card, a scrap of red I had previously embossed and a ribbon loop. You can omit the loops of course if you don’t plan on hanging them on the tree. I just like the extra texture and detail!

squeeze-box-plain-gold

This one is made from a scrap of Anna Griffin card. I wanted to use invisible thread to hang the jingle bells, but I can’t see it anywhere! Clearly it is living up to its name. I made do with white thread, which then broke on me once I had the bells in place, so a bit of keyhole surgery was called for. I had added a second holly leave but then decided it looked like the box had aspirations to be a windmill, so I removed it.

squeeze-box-silver

This third one is a bit more vintage looking. The paper is from Trimcraft’s North Pole collection. I bought it last year but I have seen it still around this year too. Personally I like a bit of glitter with vintage, but I know it is not for everyone. I had tried the number 4 in one of the other papers from the pack but it just lacked impact, so I cut another from red and glued it over the top. Maybe those last three words describe the effect well!

squeeze-box-north-pole

Of course if you fancy doing something like this you don’t need a die. Any small boxes, bags or envelopes can be adapted and decorated, ready for your advent treats!

 

Easter is early, so I am late.

Fail to prepare, prepare to fail. Totally true, but who wants to hear it?? I think ‘flying by the seat of your pants’ sounds like so much more fun. Picture it, literally. Fun, right? Dangerous and possibly catastrophic but what a buzz!

Here is my paper folding equivalent, rustled up today. A small milk carton type box to house one familiar gold chocolate bunny and some mini Easter eggs. I could have fitted two bunnies in, but we all know that is not a good idea.

bunny box

 

Easter Treat Favours

These little pouches are very easy to make, even at the last minute. You just need some small plastic bags, which cost almost nothing (mine are self-seal but it’s not vital), strips of card or thick paper, ribbon or baker’s twine, double sided sticky tape, a hole punch and a small die, or you could use a punch. Mine are for mini eggs, hence the cavorting  bunny, but you could use hearts for valentines or weddings, stars or reindeer for Christmas etc.

Mini egg favours

Cut your strip of card about .5cm wider than your bag and twice the length, plus 3 cm. Confused? This is to allow a 2cm flap to fold over at the top and a little clearance at the bottom once you stick the bag in. All will become clear.

So my bags are 6cm wide and 7cm tall and my strip of card is 6.5cm wide & 17cm long. I score the long side at 2cm and 9.5cm and crease well on the score lines.

If you want a die cut window, now is the time to do it. Remember to cut it from the section between your two score lines, with the 2cm ‘flap’ at the top. If you are using punches, or the die cut rather than the negative, you can stick it on now too, or later if you wish/forget.

Stick a narrow strip of double-sided tape on the inside of the same (front) section, close to the 2cm score line. Use a strip a bit smaller than your plastic bag. Stick the top of the bag to this. Fold up the bottom or back section, and fold the flap over to cover it at the top.

Punch holes in the top, making sure they are within your 2cm flap. Wide apart or close together, big or small, depending on your choice of closure. I like the sweetie bow look, which for these took about 23cm of ribbon, with a little wiggle room for trimming afterwards.

Do it in stages and they are very quick. They look really nice in a mix of cheery patterns and embossed card in spring colours. This year I went gingham crazy but anything works and if I had more time I would dilute the gingham a bit! Always last minute…