Create*Bloom*Grow

Growing through life creatively…


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Masquerading at the school auction

Recently I had the opportunity to do a very fun project. The theme of the auction at our school was Masquerade Ball. They brought someone in to sell masks which was nice for most people, but was never going to fly for me as I did not want a mask that could possibly look like someone else. Throughout my life I have definitely had the need to be unique. Heck with worrying if someone else would have the same dress at my Junior Prom, I did not want anyone else to even have the same color! I opted for bright purple which in the end was only worn by one out of probably 300 other girls. Anyhoo…

I also love to make things which meant this was the perfect time to stretch my creative muscles. Luckily, I had a few partners in crime. 3 of my girlfriends and I went on a road trip to visit the new Hobby Lobby on my birthday followed by lunch at Fenton’s. What could any 42 year-old birthday girl like more than a morning of crafty inspiration followed by a super yummy lunch and amazing ice cream with like-minded friends? We picked up supplies and inspiration all over the store.

We met a few days later to put together the masks. I did do a little bit of prep work to my mask as I wanted it to be glittered (a tremendous shock for anyone who has been reading my blog). I also decided that the base should be painted black before I glittered it. My husband assisted by spray painting it with left over paint from a Pinewood Derby car.

The basic base painted black:

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Then I gathered my glittering supplies:

  • Mod Podge
  • Bowl
  • A little water
  • Black glitter
  • a straw to stir and a brush

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Next I worked in small sections painting some of the Mod Podge, water, glitter combination over the mask and then pouring more glitter over each section. I like things really sparkly…

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Part of the reason for wanting to make our own masks was that most of the masks sold were the type that attach to your head with an elastic. I would go nuts having something in my hair like that. It seemed much more elegant to hold it on a stick. We got together and the glue guns went flying. I love that they are all so totally different. Here are the final results:

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A few notes on what it took to create mine:

  • Think about the sizes and proportions of the different embellishments. I had to go back to the store for additional trim as I found the original ones I selected were all the same size.
  • I used a rhinestone clip on earring for the embellishment at the forehead. Wish I had a bigger one, but I worked with what I had.
  • Don’t be afraid to go big.  In the end, I loved mine, but it was not as over the top as I would have liked.

We brought a vase to the auction, so we had someplace to put our masks the night of the event.

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And finally, a better view of my mask as featured on the lovely face of my daughter dressed up in my old Senior Ball dress. In my effort to be different, I ditched the color craze and made the dress myself.

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Happy crafting!

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Lenten Crafting

I gave up something for Lent every year when I was growing up. For those of you not familiar with Lent, it is the 40 days before Easter in the Catholic Church.  A time of waiting and preparing. Eventually, it became more popular to “do” something instead of “give up” something.  Truthfully, I have not had my act together to even do that over the last few years, but this year I am going to make it happen.

I’ve decided to make sure I take time to “do something crafty” each day.  I was inspired by a woman at a quilt show a few years ago who quilted for 1/2 hour per day.  Some days she did little projects and some days she did a little bit of a bigger project. I think I would be so much happier (which will make me a better person) if I took time to do this each day.

Yesterday was the 1st day of Lent and I made a tutu.  I will actually be doing quite a bit of this over the next few months as I am going to have a tutu booth at a vendor fair in May.

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This one is not totally done, so I have a little more work ahead of me tonight. This may actually be one of the first tutus I sell. A lady online said she was looking for some tutus locally and someone referred her to me.  I would love to have some sales under my belt before I set up a whole booth of this delightful tullishness. I make my tutus fairly simply by sewing an elastic waistband and then tying on the tulle.  This particular tutu is kind of interesting because I did 2 red, 2 black, 2 red and so on.  Depending on how you fluff the tulle, it can look mostly red (as it does in the picture) or black.

How many tutus will I make for my booth?  I am planning on about 100 (20 or so in 5 different sizes).  Just like with my OCD cookie baking, I put together a spreadsheet of color combinations and how much tulle each size takes.  I just ordered 85 – 100′ rolls of tulle from my favorite website, Papermart.  Who doesn’t need 8,500 yards of tulle lying around their house?!??!?!

Can’t wait to update you on my progress!


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Olympics are almost here – Go Team USA!

I LOVE the Olympics.  I get so excited about cheering for the good ol’ Team USA.  This past week, I decided to use some of my left over scrapbook paper to make a Team USA Banner with my Cricut.  I’m going to give you a quick overview of products & techniques I used to make it.

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I had used the BoBunny “Liberty” papers to do a scrapbook of our Washington DC trip a few years ago.  I had a bunch of different patterned papers and the solid Dark Denim & Paprika “Double Dot” papers.

I made rosettes in contrasting color to the background of each pennant.  There are a bunch of different ways that you can make the rosettes.  I have always found it best to use hot glue as it is really strong and dries quickly.

I used a banner from the “Pretty Pennants” Cricut cartridge to make the base and the letters are from “Storybook”.

I used silver glitter craft foam cut on my Sizzix Bigshot for the stars.  At first I was going to put the stars in the middle of each rosette.  Then I decided to mix it up for the rosettes with letters and keep only the solid star rosettes symmetrical.

I finished it up by punching holes with my slot punch and stringing ribbon through the whole thing.  I figure that I will also be able to use this banner again at the 4th of July, but just taking off the TEAM part.  Double duty!

It is hanging right under my TV and once I get my Olympic flag up out front (and maybe my red, white and blue bunting if I am feeling really crazy), we are all ready to watch the Opening Ceremonies!  Go TEAM USA!


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I am a Fontaholic…

I cannot lie.  I am a fontaholic.  Happily addicted to letters in their many forms.  I am also a huge Disney fan.  I was actually introduced to my husband only because my step-sister knew we were both single and both liked Disney.

I’m just dropping by quickly this morning to share some of my favorite “Disney Park Inspired” free fonts.

Disney Fonts

Enjoy!  Feel free to share any other ideas for fonts that remind you of being at the Happiest Place on Earth…


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Our California Mission Mission

Today’s creative inspiration is not so much a craft project or something I made as how we are creatively teaching our children about their roots.  I think I’ve mentioned that my children are 6th generation Californian on 3 sides.  There are not a lot of people whose California roots stretch so deep.  California school children study California history in 4th grade.  A big part of how modern California was founded was through the construction of the Mission system (unarguably at the detriment of the Native Americans who were the first inhabitants). Studying the Mission system often involves the inevitable “Mission Project” where children are required to construct one of the 21 California Missions.

My husband and I decided that as Native Californians our kids needed to have a good understanding of that part of our history so we set out on a family Mission Mission.  Yes – we were crazy enough to visit ALL 21 of the California Missions stretching from San Diego north to Sonoma.  This endeavor was started the summer before our daughter entered 4th grade and ended this past weekend just days before our son was to build his Mission.  32 months of creatively working Mission visits into our other travels throughout the state.

As a scrapbooker I took just a few (that is an understatement) pictures on our adventure which of course will be made into a fabulous album (eventually).  One common site at the Missions is a statue of the founder of the Mission system, Father Junipero Serra.  We made a point to get a shot of this statue at each site.  Here they are compiled into a single snapshot:

Junipero Serra

The astute mathematician will notice that there are only 20 images in the above combined image.  Sadly, one of the Missions had significant earthquake retrofitting and construction going on (this is California after all).  #irony is that this is the Mission my son is constructing for his project and therefore one that is near and dear to our hearts – San Luis Rey.  Here is the best we could do at that location:

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So close and yet so far away…

I thought it might be fun to throw in photos of the Mission projects my children did in school. It has almost become a joke among school parents that you can always tell who really did the kid’s Mission when they brought it into class. At some schools, it has become a contest among the parents. To combat that idea and actually give the kids the opportunity to build the project themselves, at our school, the Missions are created in class. Parents send supplies and may volunteer to help, but are not allowed to do all the work.

Mission San Antonio de Padua

Mission Projects - Page 001

Mission San Luis Rey

Mission Projects - Page 002

At any rate, we love teaching our children through travel.  Other travel bucket/checklists we are working on:

  • Taking our children to all 50 states (they are 9 and 11 and have 10 and 11 states under their belts respectively)
  • Visiting all the California State Parks
  • Visiting all the National Parks
  • Visiting all the Presidential Libraries (we’ve only done Reagan so far)

We were lucky enough to find a “National Park Passport” at the first National Park we visited and have been having it stamped ever since.  Same thing goes for the California State Park system and the Presidential Libraries.  A fun way to keep track of your progress.

We haven’t been everywhere, but it’s on our list.  Happy travels!


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Thought for the Day

I love quotes.  I think they can be powerful and help you make sense of things, see things from another way, validate your feelings or just entertain you.  I also love fonts.  So it only makes sense that the creative side of me really wants to make signs.  I had seen a quote recently that I have been dying to do something with.  “Not my circus.  Not my monkeys.”  Apparently, it’s origins are as a Polish Proverb.  This speaks to me as I tend to get wrapped up in and worry about family dramas (and which family doesn’t have these!?!?!?).  This tells me to step back and try to worry less about things that are: a) not my business and b) out of my control.

I am playing around with different mediums of signs – canvas, wood, burlap, etc.  I recently discovered pre-made black canvases which seem like a bit of a time-saving step to me as I am almost always going to feel the need to do something with a white canvas before doing a quote, but may skip that step with the black background.  I picked one up at a recent excursion to Hobby Lobby.  These are new to my area and the closest is 45 minutes away.  We are getting our own in March or so and I can’t wait!

I love working with vinyl, so for this sign I decided to use the mask of the vinyl and paint the inside.  Here goes

Materials:

  • Black 12×12 canvas
  • White paint
  • Foam paintbrush
  • Vinyl
  • Pampered Chef Scraper (the little brown thing used to clean your stoneware)
  • Cricut & Gypsy
  • Storybook Cricut cartridge

I started by playing around on my Cricut Gypsy/Craft Room looking for the perfect font.  I wanted something “circusy”.  I played around with Storybook and added the embellishments to the letters.  Perfect, but after I cut them out I realized I was never going to be able to use the mask of the vinyl to paint them.  I ended up throwing them on a piece of paper and we’ll see what I end up doing with that.

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I then dialed back the fanciful font to one of the basic, slightly fatter ones on the cartridge.  I got a little too excited and ripped off the mask that I needed for my painting project – ooops.  My husband would describe this as 1, 2, GOOOOOOOOOOOOO.

Fail

I finally hit my stride and ended up with a simple finished product.

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On to the next project!


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Halloween/Christmas….Holiday Swap

Well, I originally made the following project as part of a Dorothy from the Wizard of Oz Halloween costume (more my costume creations later because I ROCKED my son’s first ever request for a homemade costume) for my daughter, but they didn’t end up getting used and now they are Mommy’s holiday fun shoe!

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This was my first foray into Modge Podge and glitter and I have to say I was HOOKED!

Supply List

  • Canvas shoes (I found these at Michael’s)
  • Mod Podge
  • Glitter
  • Tape
  • Paper to protect your work surface
  • Paintbrush
  • 2 Bowls

I started by covering my counter with paper so that it would not end up glittered and clean up would be easy.  I used tape to mask the areas of the shoe that I did not want to cover with glitter.  I used clear tape which made it a little tricky to see exactly what I did, but you can use your imagination…

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Then I mixed up some Mod Podge, a little water and a bunch of glitter in a bowl.  Adding glitter to the Mod Podge gives you better coverage in the long run.

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Then you just start “painting” your shoe with that mixture.  After I would paint a small section, I would hold the shoe over the other bowl and pour more glitter on it.

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Keep going until the whole thing is covered.  Let it dry and remove the tape.  Enjoy your cute new shoes.

Disclaimer – the glitter can be scratchy around the top, so you might want to make sure you have socks between the shoe and your skin.  This was PART of the reason my daughter refused to wear them on Halloween. We originally thought these would be better for trick-or-treating.  The truth is that she is 10 and I’d also purchased sequin heels for her Dorothy costume.  She would have slept in those if she’d had the opportunity…