Since I have never been very good with photography, and I was getting tired of asking my poor husband to take pictures of my cards, I decided to invest in some assistance. In the summer, I have decent success taking pictures outside on our deck. But in the winter, when I cannot go outside, I am moving from one spot to the next trying to find a suitable location, trying to avoid kids' toys in the background, trying to get rid of shadows, etc. So after looking on Amazon, I decided to try a Photography Table Top Photo Light Tent Kit by Limo Studio. I was able to convince my husband to set it up permanently in his workroom downstairs, so I thought I'd take a picture of the actual space (above) to show its true surroundings. Once inside the tent, the surrounding mess disappears and I am pleased with the results (below). Now, taking pictures does not become the chore, and I can spend more time creating!
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I love the look of stitching on cards, but since I don't own a sewing machine and I can't even sew on a button, this technique seems quite out of my league. I had perused online for a sewing machine that I might be able to start with, but it just seemed like such an investment for someone who really has intentions no more than to add a few stitches to a card. I then came across a low cost option called the Sew Crafty Mini which they claim is meant to "sew accents onto your scrapbook pages, make fabric envelopes, add stiches to cards, sew outlines on paper projects..." Yes! I threw it on my Amazon wishlist, despite glancing at the low star product rating.
A Christmas came and went and no one purchased this for me, probably because they thought it was a true sewing machine and they know me well. But when I saw a local friend posting one brand new in box on Facebook for $6, I went for it.
Before reading the directions, I went back to the reviews to see what people were saying: "This machine is horrible. I tried to sew a few pieces of paper together. It worked for about 5 minutes." Well, I hoped for the best, but expected the worst. Last night at Craft Night, I asked my friend Amy (who owns a $600 sewing machine) to help me try it out...The first stitch went pretty well...
Then, we cut the thread to remove the paper and tried to set up again. The second stich, well, didn't go so well. I cut it off, flipped the cardstock over and tried again...
So yes, it worked for about five minutes. I don't even know how to pinpoint the problem, but for me, I don't think the hassle would be worth the results. Moving on to plan B, if anyone sees a better model at a garage sale, let me know! If that doesn't work, I might have to invest in a real sewing machine and force myself to learn how to sew on buttons and maybe even hem some pants!
So these days, everyone knows what DIY means: Do It Yourself. Probably not everyone knows what DSP is, but in my papercrafting world it refers to Designer Series Paper. And I have a lot of DSP! Every year, Stampin Up! releases about 16 packs of DSP which are current for just one year. During that year, you will see several paper craft projects floating around Pinterest featuring these papers. And then after the year is over, SU retires those DSP packs and you can usually find them in the Clearance Rack for as low as 2.19 for a pack of 12 sheets!
Since I am getting excited about the new 2014-2015 Annual Catalog coming out June 1 (and May 1st for demonstrators), I started digging through my old DSP packs and decided to put them to a different use. I have always thought my light switch plates in my bathroom were a little plain, but never got around to doing anything about it. When I saw this beautiful blue and white DSP from 2007 (the year I first discovered Stampin' Up!) which matched my bathroom, I decided to try covering my light switch plates.
First, I took the light switch plate off and traced it on the back of the DSP I wanted to use. Second, I used a cutting blade with a cutting mat underneath to cut the shape out of the DSP. Third, I used Mod Podge to cover both the back of the DSP and the front of the plate. Then, I pressed the DSP down on the plate and wrapped the DSP around the edges and put another thick layer of Mod Podge on it; I have also seen some people who do not try to wrap it, but instead paint the edges. After letting it dry for about 10 minutes, I put on another layer of Mod Podge and repeated about 4 times. Finally, it was ready to mount on the wall!