Thursday, October 19, 2017

My Cookie Jars Extravaganza - Let's Get Hopping, Round #2

Welcome to the "Gift Jar" blog hop. You might be hopping already and arrived from the previous blog. If you starting here, no worries, just use "Next Blog" arrow at the end of my blog to hop to another one within the theme.

Every year there is Michaelmas Day at my boys' school and this will be my third year running a cookie jar stall. It starts with a trip to IKEA to buy 100 jars, organise a collection of ingredients, put together a group of friends to fill the jars and decorate them. Bada boom, bada bam. 


Actually, it wasn't bada boom, bada bam the first year, let me tell you! And there weren't 100 jars either; only 25 but the details that went into the decorating... 
I didn't have to fill them but I did all the decorating by myself. I didn't really know what I was going to do. It is difficult to ask for help when unsure yourself. I was very happy when I put together these. The jars were beautiful and they were a hit. All sold within 15 minutes!

Not that it would balance the work put into these though. Only the flower on the top consist of three different layers, all cut out manually with scissors. The tags consisted of three layers, all backed with matching DSP (so had to cut six circles just for the tags).


Only naturally, the following year I looked for ways how to make it all a bit easier. I was a tad wiser in a sense of what has to be done and what can be omitted.

First thing I did was to find a partner in crime. I wanted to have several different designs and we came up with two each. We split the load and each took care of fifty jars.

It was a great cooperation of two crafters who worked well side by side and gave each other support. The tops were punched and big shotted, the tags were simplified but still functional and gorgeous. 

I was very pleased with the final look and overall outcome. Same as the previous year, the jars were a huge hit and they all sold with a great profit into the PTA bucket.


And so we are coming to the current year. 
I only have two prototypes so far as Michaelmas is taking place next month. 
In my opinion, they both look great, don't you think? I feel the decoration will be a breeze. I remember in the previous years it took me ages to figure out the colour coordination. I sorted that out by using one design for the top as well as the tag.

I tried to use punches rather than dies which cuts time considerably. I still use dies to cut circles for the top but, to be honest, because I am working on a different project that uses a big shot a lot as well I am combining each run so it feels I'm making a great progress on my monthly plan. 
I'm also cutting time by using the tag punch and the instructions are printed on a label and stuck on the second sheet of that tag.

The ingredients list is hidden on the big scalloped circle on the top and is visible when the jar is opened. I was very excited to use the new SU! blends to colour the images. The scalloped tag is decorated with little jingle bells I found the other day in a local store. The tag is attached to the jar by a colour matching ribbon. Now, only 98 more to go!

Feel inspired? Make your own cookie jar. Click here for a step by step.

Thank you for stopping by my blog. I hope you liked what you saw. Enjoy the rest of this blog hop. Click on the arrow below to visit Cathy Caine's post.

Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Jingle Bells

This past weekend I ran a workshop in the Christmas spirit. It was a learning curve for me as the group was large by my measure and even though prepared I felt anxious how it would go. 

I felt such a responsibility when preparing the packs for everyone. Do I have everything? Is everything the right dimension? Is it all cut straight? And don't forget the instructions! It was my first time giving out written instructions and let me tell you, it's not that easy to write these! 

Everyone made two beautiful cards, one with a matching tag. And then a box for a tealight with a little message inside. 

When I was preparing the materials I thought of the reindeer card as more complicated as there were many elements put together but actually now I think the Santa was maybe more involved. I pre-cut all the bits for the reindeer so it was more an assembly then stamping project. But everyone in the group finished their Santa card with a tag unaided and the results were great. They all put a little personal touch into it and at the end there were many different takes of the original cards. 

I wish I took photos of all the final creations but I was concentrating on all the participants being comfortable and happy with their crafting that I kind of forget to document everything. It is something for my learning journal... Oh, well, I guess I will have to run another workshop!

Saturday, October 07, 2017

October Class

Ready - Steady - Punch, Cut, Score

Little Santa

Little Santa card is very cute and quite fast to make. I used several different Christmas theme DSP (designer series paper). The used set is from the last year, called This Christmas. I embellished it with a couple of washi tapes. Santa is sprinkled with Diamond Dazzle glitter. The bonding agent is the fine tip glue pen. Basically, you just fill the bits where you want the glitter with the glue and voila. A little sweet touch was to use Q-tip dabbed onto a light pink pad to highlight Santa's cheeks. Then using the markers to colour the Santa image. I enjoyed this colouring part. It's so calming.

Tool highlights

Dazzling Star

The second card is the small format (3x3"). 
I got the Diamond Dazzle paper some time ago but without a real plan. Who doesn't like to have some glimmer paper, just in case? 
When I finally picked it up to work with it, I looked at it and watched it dazzle for a bit. And then I just reached for coloured cardstock I saw in the sparkles - pool party. I wanted to use Stitched Shapes dies on a project this month so I did and the rest just clicked together.

Tool highlights

Halloween Box

The 3D project of the class is this cute Halloween box. I made some of these already, last month, for MacMillan coffee morning. Everyone liked them so much that I decided to share them in my October class. I followed this great tutorial of Julie DiMatteo to make them. 
Halloween used to be my big thing when living in the USA but not so much here. It was nice, nevertheless, to brush my old "witching" set to make nice tags. Bellow, I am showing 2 super cool tools I used. Simply scored made the box super fast and easy to make. No measuring involved! Brilliant! In no time one punch made the decorative closing. When creating the boxes, these two tools became my new crafty besties. 

 Tool Highlights