Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Club Scrap's Homestead Meets Darius Rucker

Howdy Club Scrappers and Friends,

Howdy seems especially appropriate for this month's kit "Homestead"!  Thanks for stoppin by for the October Blog Hop.

(At any time if you want to start at the beginning of the hop just stop by The Club Scrap Blog.)

So this month I made something for your enjoyment...yup, pick your jaw right up off the floor because I actually made something and I even used some of the actual Homestead kit items!  Shocked aren't you?  I felt the kit was super great for my redneck Southern down home personality!

So to start I need to get you in the mood for this little card I whipped up.  Are you familiar with Darius Rucker?  Former front man for Hootie and the Blowfish turned county music superstar.  He sings a fun little ditty called "Wagon Wheel" and if you haven't heard it or want to hear it again just click here!  (The video features back-up singing by Lady Antebellum as well as some appearances from some of my favorite rednecks from Duck Dynasty!)  Now that you've heard it feel free to sing and hum it for hours, all day, for days...you're welcome!

I decided that with the Rockin, rocking chair stamp and the Wagon Wheel stamps (all from the Unmounted stamp sets) that I'd make a special Wagon Wheel card for my mom (dear Mom, I was going to mail this to you before the blog came out but I forgot so act surprised when it comes!)

I wanted a card with a pull-out wagon wheel on the top.  It's kinda hard to explain so I'll just walk you through it.

Step 1 (for me)-Pick an envelope you already have and size your card to it.  Try to figure out how big your card needs to be.  You might want to sketch it out, there might be multiple drafts.  I decided to make a "pocket card" but since my envelope was longer than 6" I had to use two pieces of paper to make it.  I have included this helpful diagram.
Ok well that sort of didn't work out right.  So here is a bit of a guideline.  Measure envelope and cut a piece of solid paper the exact size you want your card.  This will be the back of your pocket.  Cut another piece of paper to be 1" wider across (1/2" for either side) and 1/2" longer than you want your finished card.  This is the pocket front.  (But don't actually do this yet because you might need to adjust, see below NOTE)  You are totally following this so far right?

Step 2.-Score the card front at 1/2" from each side and 1/2" from the bottom.  I needed some help with this step, obviously.
Step 3.-Draw and pencil line across the bottom corners of the pocket and cut along the hashed lines.
Step 4.-Fold in along the score lines to make a pocket and use some kind of fairly decent adhesive on the folded flaps to stick your back cover onto your pocket.  (I might use 1" wide flaps next time.)

Step 5-I stamped the wagon wheel pull out on a scrap paper and cut it out to determine how large I needed the inside page.  (NOTE-After doing this I realized if the inside page was the same size as the pocket and you have a rounded wagon wheel on the top that the entire card won't fit in the envelope-don't be me.  I trimmed down the entire pocket by about an inch to make the wheel fit into the envelope.)
Step 6-After cutting out the inside pull out panel I went about decorating all my pieces.  I used the splatter stamp from the Oopsie Daisy set to add some background to the pocket and back piece.

I also stamped, embossed and then fancy cut out the large Wagon Wheel stamp.

I stamped the front of the card with the Rocking Chair and used the UM Expressions font for my "Rock Me Momma" sentiment.
Step 7.-Stick everything down and find a nice picturesque place to photo your finished card!

And here is what it looks like when you slide the inside panel inside the pocket!

Nifty huh?  I'm so glad I was able to exactly show you how to make this neat card...sort of.  Now I'm sure there are lots of great formulas and diagrams for making pocket pages, next time I might consult one. =) 

Thanks from me and AJ and MaryAnne for stopping by and have fun hopping along to your next stop at  Tiare Smith's Blog.






Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Organization-The Blueprint for Success!

Howdy folks and welcome to the blog hop!  If you get lost along the way feel free to drop by The Club Scrap Blog to catch up on anything you might have missed.
I've been on vacation and am playing catch up here at home and at work but I couldn't miss out on the blog hop so keep your hands and arms inside the blog at all times.  There will possibly be eating, drinking and flash photography on the blog today, but please no smoking!  (Sorry I told you I'd been on vacation?)

Instead of a fancy project (come on you didn't think I would actually make something did you??) I'd like to take a few moments to discuss something near and dear to all of our hearts...organization in the crafting room.  I know I know, you probably don't need any help with this right?

 Your room doesn't look like this?

You don't have buckets of unfinished junk everywhere like this do you?

I don't know about you but my supplies are busting at the seams so I wanted to go over a couple ideas for organization because...


Let's start with kits.  I keep my kits in 12x12 plastic folders.  Each folder easily holds one regular kit, one lite kit and one stamp kit.  Not that I would know but it might also hold an extra full paper pack from the regular kit as well.  As you can see by one of the above photos I had run out of space for the actual folders so I purchased some new shelving units to go in the spare bedroom (aka the cat's room.)  I purchased a Kallax shelving unit from IKEA.  These used to be called XPEDIT units and are basically the same inside dimensions.  They come in a 1x4, 2x4, 4x4 and 5x5 cube size.  In this situation I ended up with a 4x4 cube (around $80) which I was able to assemble myself.  Just a note, try to put it together in the room you want to use it in.


Have someone help you stand it up as they are sturdy (aka heavy.)  Also PLEASE anchor it to the wall.  I don't need anyone coming back to me and saying that they had one fall on them and crush an important body part.  Here is mine finished and I purchased 3 ea $5 "basket" inserts.  (I wish I had bought a couple more.)


Please excuse the litter box, I told you it was the cat's room!  So now you have your finished new storage area.

Each of the cubes can hold around 12-14 folders (even more if you don't have all three monthly kits in each folder.)  So that means each cube basically holds a year of kits, including a special release or two.


I also have some of my kits in older wire cube storage which I do still use but if you go this route make sure you zip-tie every SINGLE connection.  I'm not kidding here.  You don't want to know what it looks or sounds like to have one of these puppies collapse in the middle of the night dumping about 8 years worth of kits on the ground.  Not that I would know.


So now you have organized and packed up all your kits.  Now let's discuss these little babies...


Call em POPs, call em HPOPs, we love em!  And We (I'm using the royal We here) have a TON of them.  I started to do some calculating but once I hit 300 POPs I quit counting.  So I have a couple of suggestions for you.  First off you can use an insert in one of your new cubes to hold a good many of them like this.  I keep my most recent ones here for easy access.


I also like the old over the door shoe organizers for some of my older POPs which I store at another house.  (yeah I know I have issues)


My current craft loft doesn't have any doors though so it's a tough spot for storage.  I also don't have a closet but if you do you can use these closet shoe holders for POPs as well (including the older strip type that we used to have.)


Finally I have a good many POPs in some storage holders called "Shoes Under"  Now these work well under the bed for storage but are fairly hard to get out and carry to the other room to use.  I actually have to get help to carry one around because they are "floppy" not sturdy.


So now you have a place for your POPs!  Next up we have the Greetings to Go.  I actually just started trimming, scoring, folding my GTG and storing them in another one of the cubes.  Ok so I scored and folded one of them.  The rest are a work in progress.


Here is my new cube system mostly filled up in the spare room...I left a couple non-craft cubes for things like cat supplies, and our poker stash.



I also use a similar 2x4 cube upstairs to store albums and ALSB pages waiting for photos.


I hope some of these ideas will help you save your craft space, I know I have a hard time creating when I'm surrounded by chaos and...

Looks like a have a couple cubes left empty, time to go buy some more supplies!!  I hope you enjoyed this little blog today and before I forget...

AJ approves of this month's kit!

Hop on over to Tiare's Blog for the next stop today and everybody keep on hoarding...I mean...crafting!! 



 


Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Something out of Nothing-Cinema Blog Hop

Howdy blog hoppers!!  Welcome to the August Club Scrap Cinema Blog Hop...
Are you in the right place?  If you just came from Debby's Blog then you are following along perfectly.  If you hopped over from Facebook you might want to check out all of this month's projects over at Club Scrap Creates!

So today we are going to make a cute little card...
I know, can you believe I made something so crafty and cute??

After stressing about what I was going to make (for days) and not coming up with anything (as usual) I turned to Pinterest.  I knew I wanted to use the "Stars" quote from the unmounted stamp set so I just did a simple search of "star card" and ended up with this!  Here's a quick tutorial...

Start with 4 colors of paper (I picked from the POPs that came with my kit.)  Cut each piece to a 2.5" square.
Next up stamp one side of each square with the stamp of your choice, I think a pattern of some kind would work best.  I picked the Workbench wood mounted grid stamp.  I used the black india ink on the light paper and the white pigment ink on the dark paper.  Be sure to heat set if needed before moving onto the next step.
So flip one of your squares over and mark lightly with a pencil halfway down each side of it.
Grab either a Scor-Pal or just a bone folder and score each corner from the pencil mark to the next pencil mark.
Fold each corner up so that your pattern shows at the top.
It really helps if the cat sits on top of your finished product, trust me!  If you do not have a cat you can skip this step.  If the cat destroys your prototype you must start over.  Sigh.

So after you have created (or re-created) each of your 4 base squares you can cut 4 small white squares for the insides of each little "box".  Now any good crafty blogger would have this measurement but I don't have the card with me and I didn't write it down.  Probably because I was peeved at having to start over since AJ ate my first box.  Anyways.  4 little squares.  I decided to stamp the insides each with a star image (this one from Time and Space UM's) in coordinating colors from each piece of paper like this.

I added a little bling to each inside paper (a star brad from Bright Lights, Big City.)
Firmly attach each inside to the outside and then nest together on the front of your card.  (I just used a basic 8 1/2" x 11" piece of paper cut in half, and folded in half.)  Try to position the "boxes" as high as you can on your card to leave space for your sentiment.
The Hydrangea Zig Zag UM was a perfect touch for the bottom of my card.  Add your sentiment and maybe a little more bling (large star brad is from Equestrian kit) and you have your finished card!!  Oops, don't forget the rest of your sentiment on the inside of the card!!

I especially like that the card has dimension but also folds flat for mailing.

I hope you enjoyed my little card today.  Your next stop on the Blog Hop is with Tiare over at http://www.tiaresmith.com/  Be sure to tune in next time for the Blog Hop and in the meantime I'll be blogging this Tuna Tartare in the next few days so come back by to check it out!!
 








Monday, August 18, 2014

A Different Sort of Pizza

It's been such a long time since I did any foodie blogging but I have been trying some new things in the kitchen and wanted to start posting them...

First up an excellent pizza with an unusual cast of characters...

My recipe was based on this one from Epicurious, I was searching for a savory recipe with fresh figs (which was more challenging than I thought.)  Around here you can only get good fresh figs from the regular grocery store for about 3 weeks of the year.  They happen to be 1/2 off at Publix this week in case you have a hankering to re-create my creation!

You'll need this cast of characters...(I was so psyched I actually remembered to take this photo for once!)
Not pictured are some caramelized onions (which was not in the original recipe but a couple of recipe comments suggested adding them and I'm glad I did.) 

So your first step is to caramelize your onion (this is just one large onion sliced and then cooked for approx. 45 mins on low in a little olive oil.)
The original recipe called for 2 cups of some kind of blue cheese but I only had about 3/4 a cup so I subbed in some other cheeses (goat and fontina) that I had on hand for the total of 2 cups.

So after your onions are done, go ahead and cut up your prosciutto and figs (which will marinate for about 15 mins in 1 Tablespoon of the balsamic.)

Lightly flour your work surface and roll out of the pizza dough to some random shape that fits on the pan you want to use (either round or this lovely rectangular/oval shape I have here.)
Sprinkle some cornmeal on your pizza pan and crank your oven to 450 degrees.
Carefully transfer the dough to the pan (note there is a reason there is no picture of this step, let's just say there was some re-rolling after the pizza was dropped on the stovetop.)

Once your pizza is on the pan brush the dough lightly with some olive oil and then add the cheeses and bake for between 12-15 mins.  It really depends on your oven.  You want your pizza to be about 90% done.

Pull out the cheese-y dough and add the onion, strips of prosciutto and the fig slices (this is what it looks like before you put it in for the second baking.)

Pop it back in for around 2 mins, you want to soften the figs and slightly crisp the prosciutto.  While it is cooking use the bowl that the figs and balsamic marinated in and add one more tablespoon of balsamic and about the same amount of olive oil and whisk.  Toss this dressing with your arugula in a large bowl (I'm not sure I used the full 8 cups the recipe called for-Leslie was pretty skeptical about the greens on the pizza.)

By now your pizza should be done, pull it out to rest and slice and top with the arugula salad on each plate.
This would be the perfect place in the blog to post a photo of a perfectly topped piece of the pizza on the plate...
oops.

Needless to say we both enjoyed it a lot!  So grab yourself some figs and make a pizza.  It really was pretty easy and very tasty!