Sunday, January 27, 2013

Toadally in love -- with cutting SVG files

Hi there!

I'm swinging by with a quick post to show a card that ... umm, wasn't so quick, but I think is adorable.  The cutting file is from Miss Kate Cuttables. It is an SVG file, and in order to use it, I needed to first figure out -- which wasn't that hard -- how to use SVG files with my Silhouette Cameo. 

I watched one YouTube video and was in business. 

The reason the card took so long is that I'm in a card swap -- and I made 10 of these complicated cards with lots of layers. Silly me!  Well, they're done now, and I think my fellow card swappers will enjoy them.

Are you making Valentine's Day cards this year?

Back at you soon!

Thursday, January 24, 2013

My Next Adventure in Life ...

Yesterday, I promised an exciting announcement, and here it is: Now that I have retired and can spend more time crafting and teaching papercrafting techniques, I have decided to re-enlist as an Independent Consultant with Close To My Heart.

I first became an Independent Consultant when CTMH partnered with ProvoCraft to bring out what I believe is the absolute best Cricut cartridge, ever: Art Philosophy. Frankly, I enrolled to sell CTMH to get its products -- especially this cartridge -- at a discount.

The Art Philosophy cartridge is my go-to tool for cardmaking.  Just look at all these card shapes that are on the cartridge -- already welded and ready for your creative enhancements:


Today, I spent the morning using Art Philosophy for both the card shapes as well as the embellishments on a group of cards. I made all these in about 2.5 hours, from scratch without any ideas stirring in front of me other than the cartridge:

I started with this one, a 6x6" square card with a lacy border and heart.
All of the images are on the Cricut Art Philosophy cartridge.

Next, I made this scalloped card, with a lacy, swirl pattern.
I embellished the tips with pink pearls in various sizes.
The pink paper is from CTMH -- and it cut like butter
on my Cricut, with settings at 5 speed, 5 pressure.

What to do with the "off-cut" from the card above?
Well, make another card, of course!  I just made the
ivory card base 3/4" larger than the lacy cut.

Moving on, I love this romantic doily heart also on
Cricut's Art Philosophy cartridge.  I cut it in a Bazzill red
at 5", and mounted it on CTMH White Daisy cardstock.
I hand-trimmed the heart card shape, just because it was easy.
I trimmed the heart with LoveBug Creations' Rumpled Ribbon
in Dark Chocolate.

Finally, a little different -- but still using Art Philosophy.
I cut the butterfly card using seafoam dotted swiss cardstock.
Then, I lined it with a floral paper from a 6x6" stack I had handy.
I repeated the same cut of the butterflies from the floral stock
and put some of the butterflies on the outside of the card, to
show movement.  Inside (yes, I should have shown it!), I
have white cardstock liner, from which I cut the butterflies
again, and added a strip of the floral paper. I love this look!

If you haven't yet purchased your Art Philosophy cartridge, there's no time like the present, and no one who'd love to sell it to you than me!  And exclusive to those who order with me, if you order it within the next week (by January 31), I will reward you with a free January Stamp of the Month set, a $17.95 value!  Look at the projects in the CTMH Idea Book that were made using this beautiful set:

Click HERE to order the 
Cricut Art Philosophy bundle directly from me!

Let me show you all of the 700 images on this extensive cartridge including boxes, bags, tags, banners, borders, a font, cards, envelopes, flowers (3-D and flat), and all of the incredible images that coordinate with CTMH stamp sets!

Art Philosophy is offered exclusively through your favorite CTMH consultant (and I hope that's me!)  The bundle comes with not only the Cricut cartridge shown above, but also three coordinating CTMH My Acrylix stamp sets, and three coordinating sheets chipboard dimensional elements. The value of this bundle is over $124, but is available for only $99.

As a new Independent Consultant (or shall we say, "re-newed"), I'll be receiving the new Idea Book with my kit very shortly, and I look forward to sharing!!  

You can shop on my CTMH site by going to: 

And if you ever have any questions or if I can be of any help in stimulating your creative mojo, please don't hesitate to contact me! 

Thank you in advance for supporting me on this new adventure!

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Super Bowl party planning: The Big Game is February 3

Are you thinking about having a Super Bowl party, whether or not your team made it to the Big Game? I have some resources for you.

First of all, the game is Sunday, February 3 at 5:30 p.m., from the Mercedes-Benz Superdome in New Orleans, Louisiana. 

Even if you're plum out of luck in terms of getting your tickets and enjoying the game live and in person, you still have some time to get creative for your party at home.

Allow me to reprise a project I created and showed when I was adrift on last season's Paper Craft Island*. 

I made these projects (the card/ticket holder, the tickets, popcorn container) when I was wistfully hoping that the Philadelphia Eagles would pull out a miracle season. HA! NOT!!  OK, so we ended up with one of the worst records in football and fired our coach, Andy Reid. But watch out for next year...there's a new coach in town!

If you want to decorate with the logos of the teams that DID make it into Super Bowl 47, here they are:

The source for both of these is Wikipedia, where they have these available in SVG files for those of you who use a Silhouette Cameo, Make The Cut, or Sure Cuts A Lot. 

For more Super Bowl party ideas, why not hop over to Pinterest.  Do you use Pinterest?  I have a lot pinned to my Super Bowl Party Pinterest Board at

Here are a few "pins" that I think would be easy and fun for us paper-crafters to make to enhance your theme:

Cover a juice box to look like a football:
Source: Crystal's A Pumpkin and a Princess Blog.

.. or use the same design (either made with tape, cut paper, or paint) to make silverware containers out of up-cycled tin cans.
Source: Michelle's Rust & Sunshine Blog.

OK, I hope y'all have fun at your Super Bowl Party, and if you're heading to N'awlins for the big game on Feb 3, why not stick around another 9 days for Mardi Gras?!  Now there is a P-A-R-T-E-E-E-E!!!

(* About Paper Craft Island:  The call for contestants for Season 2 is continuing through February 15, 2013.  I had a super-great time participating in the challenges throughout Season 1, and ended up winning the game. I hope you'll play along in Season 2.  For more information on signing up, go to the PCI blog at, or contact Kimi at  

DeFiaNtLy DiFfeReNt & CreAtiVeLy Yours,

Monday, January 21, 2013

"You Are Amazing" CTMH card, and CANDY winner!!

Those who are my Facebook friends may have seen this card I posted there first. I made it using a sweet stamp set called "Love Blooms", from Close To My Heart, stamping the base images of the rose petals with CTMH White Daisy pigment ink onto kraft cardstock.  

I then stamped the rose petals atop the White Daisy ink, in Hollyhock ink, and also stamped the rose outline stamp atop that using the same Hollyhock. (It looks darker because there is no white underneath).  

The butterfly is from a stamped image swap I received from a Facebook friend, that I colored using Copic markers. The ribbon is the FABULOUS new "Rumple Ribbons" from LoveBug CreationsThe white ribbon is edged in Panther Pink ... so pretty....   The sentiment stamp is from the "Just the Right Words" collection by Becca Feeken for Just Rite Stamps. 

Now that I am retired, I will be going back to being a consultant for Close To My Heart. So if you're looking for this stamp set, beautiful pigment inks, kits, papers, or the EXCLUSIVE Cricut Artiste or Art Philosophy cartridges, I'd love to help you out!   

..... and now I have the pleasure of announcing my blog candy winner from this weekend's Disney-Pixar Blog Hop:

Congratulations to the winner of my blog candy, offered during this weekend's Disney Pixar Blog Hop.  The prize is a $25 Disney Gift Card to use to shop, dine, stay, or play Disney!  

The winner was picked by Random.Org from the 30 unique comments left on my posting.  
From them, Randy picked:

The winner is VICKIE, who on January 20, 2013 at 7:27 p.m. wrote:

"Love your Disney Dream Mini Album. Your Charlotte is Beautiful.  My first memory was 101 dalmatians also. I love the puppies."

Vickie, I left a message on your blog (and became your newest follower!).  Please contact me privately by e-mail (to with your mailing address.


DeFiaNtLy DiFfeReNt & CreAtiVeLy Yours,

Saturday, January 19, 2013

Disney Pixar Blog Hop -- Dreaming of a Family Vacation in 2013

If you are here for the STT Valentine Treats Blog Hop, please click HERE.

Welcome to the original, and best, Disney Pixar Blog Hop!  I have been a participant in each of these very special hops since their inception oh-my-gosh-HOW-many-years-ago?!, and it is always my pleasure to participate with this great group of gals, including my "Sistah" Shawn Mosch, the Hop Hostess.

For this very special occasion, I made my first mini-album:

Tigger and/or Charlotte, same description: "unstopapabibble."

I have a dream, and I'll let you in on it.  I'm hoping that one day soon, I'll be able to take my hubby, our daughter Emily, her husband Josh and their daughter (my granddaughter), 2-year old Charlotte, on a special trip to Disney World. It will be Charlotte's first trip to the Magic Kingdom! We're hoping to go in May if we can swing it financially.

So I figured if I sprinkle some magic fairy dust on the wish and if I dream big, and make a mini album to capture the memories, the trip will happen this year. Will it?  I don't know yet ... but just in case ... in case Dreams REALLY Do Come True ... let's pretend that it's happening this May ...

The image at right is from a Google search. I printed it using my ink jet printer, then
enhanced it with gold Stickles. I added the flying Dumbo, popping him up with pop-dots.
There's room for a family photo on the inside cover.

Charlotte: "Love me some sketti!", age 2

Charlotte is our family's little pixie, so what better way to honor her spirit with a Tinkerbell layout on the next page?

The Tinkerbell at left is cut using Cricut's Tinkerbell and Friends cartridge.  The saying at right (glued onto
a pocket flap), "Small is the new Big", was cut also using the cartridge. I didn't like how the "is the new" cut, so
I set that using my computer and glued it over the cut letters.  I enhanced the letters with white gel pen.
There's room for photos under Tink's left hand, which is left loose, to tuck the photos under.

I'm not sure how many rides we'll be able to go on in the week we'll be in Orlando -- Charlotte's little, and I don't do roller coasters as I've had several head injuries (including one on a Disney roller coaster, the Rock'n Roller Coaster!). But I'm sure they'll evoke some screams, hoots and laughter!  This layout celebrates that shouting -- and leaves room for a 4x6" picture under the circles at right.

Pull the Mickey head from the pocket (above) and you'll find a park map of the Magic Kingdom:

I found the Magic Kingdon map on Google. Just search: "Image - Magic Kingdom map".

The following page allows room for writing or photographs of our stay in Orlando. We're planning on staying in a family villa nearby, so we'll have details about it here, and photos of course!

There's plenty of more room for fantastic memories to be recorded on the next 2-page spread (with side pocket) shown here:

The reclining Mickey Mouse is cut using Cricut's Mickey and Friends cartridge,
as is the "Mickey" on the flap at right. There's room for a photo tucked behind
Mickey's right ear, and more "stuff" in the pocket.

There's room for souvenir copies of our boarding passes and maybe Charlotte's pilot wings ... for saving our week-long Park Hopper tickets which don't expire, and other collectibles in pocket space (at right) in this layout, too:

While in the park, I'm sure we'll want to collect character autographs, so there are a few pages with color blocks for this purpose:

Pull the parading Donald Duck tab at top, and there's more room for autographs in the insert:

The inside back cover also has room for autographs!

Finally, when it's time to relax, dream and simply believe this is all happening, finally, a family trip to remember, let's visit Cinderella's castle and dream:

I'm hoping for a pretty Charlotte portrait at right, taken during a planned visit to the Bippity-Boppity Boutique!
A little Glossy Accents makes the
bubbles in Ariel's ocean seem real!

I certainly hope you had fun Dreaming Big with me. Maybe, just maybe, with a bit of glitter and pixie dust, wishing upon a star, the wish will come true. We'll see!!


What is your first Disney memory? Is it of a particular character, an event, a television show, a movie, or a visit to one of the Magic Kingdoms??  

I'll tell you my oldest Disney memory: It was July 1961 and our local drive-in movie theater had a special showing of the animated "101 Dalmatians". I was five years old, and my sister Janet was seven, and we were in the back seat of Dad's Dodge DeSoto station wagon. I was petrified of Cruella deVille, and somehow my sister decided to call me "CruEllen DeSoto" ... grrrrr....!  S-i-s-t-e-r-s!!!  

To win my blog candy ...

In a comment to this posting, share with me your first Disney memory, and be a follower of my CardMonkey blog, and you'll be eligible to win some special DISNEY BLOG CANDY!  Want to know what it is??  It's a $25 Disney Gift Card that you can use to "shop, dine, stay or play" ... at a Magic Kingdom, online, or at a Disney store!  How cool is THAT!?  In your comment, please be sure to leave a way for me to contact you when you win. Everybody's eligible, even non-US citizens!  

So now it is time for you to mosey on over to the next stop on today's Disney Pixar Blog Hop: Go to JAMIE at her Little Bits of Paper blogspot. Her blog is simply fantastic, and I can't wait to see what Disney project she has for us today!

In case you get lost along the way, here is a complete line-up of the blog stops today and tomorrow:

Day One - Saturday, January 19th
Shawn ~
Amy ~
YOU ARE HERE:  Ellen ~
Jamie ~
Jenny ~
Kathy ~
Lori ~
Madison ~

Day Two - Sunday, January 20th
Shawn ~
Amy ~
Bobbi Jo ~
Jenny ~
Kathy ~
Tami ~
Claire ~
Kim ~

Until next time,