Friday, February 25, 2011

Card Set

One of my favorite craft magazines, Paper Crafts, had an article once in which there were card projects requiring a few pieces of paper, some ribbon, and a few embellishments. The result was 5 cute cards made in no time.

I figured this was a quick way to use up some of my materials. Here is what I chose for this 5-card project.

And here is what I ended up with:

"Everything is Satisfactual" card

"Just Wanted to Say Hello" card

"Thinking of You" card

"Happy Bird-Day" card

"Congrats to You" card (my favorite of the group.)

I stayed pretty true to the original patterns on these. Sometimes it's nice to go on autopilot!

Monday, February 21, 2011

Why I haven't been getting a lot of sleep this week...

Only in the last week have I really started to figure out Photoshop Elements and how to use it for my digital scrapbooking quest.

I still have a long way to go. But it is a lot of fun.

And very addicting.

I used several digi-sources on this one. If you are interested, let me know.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Have you tried...

This wonderful tool is called a Silpat.

(Look closely, you can see the outlines of my football/helmet cookies!)

I first heard about it on one of Martha Stewart's shows. It is a silicone baking sheet which essentially eliminates the need for cooking spray and is much easier to use than parchment paper.

They are sort of pricey so I have never been able to justify getting one. But when my aunt gave us money for Christmas this year, I knew exactly how I was going to spend it! It ended up being on sale at Spoons 'n Spice so I was able to afford a new cookie sheet, too!

Try one. You'll love it. Happy baking!

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Valentines Box of Chocolates

I saw this idea from somewhere, some time ago...except for the chocolates were lined up in a cellophane bag with an embellished bag topper. I thought it would make a fun Valentine gift for the grandparents and my sweetheart. And I put mine in boxes.

If you want a tutorial, keep reading.

I bought a few bags of the Hershey Nuggets chocolates. This shape lends itself well to the project.

Take any pattern of scrapbook paper that you would like. I chose Valentine's themed, of course. Cut into 1-inch strips.

Then cut those 1-inch strips into 3-inch sections.

This size fits perfectly around the candy bars. It took awhile for the glue to dry so I had to set each one in a clothespin, but they turned out pretty cute.

Then I found these Wilton treat boxes at Michaels.

I started decorating them a bit. Then my daughter got a hold of the paper and started coloring on it. My inner OCD began to panic until I realized it was, after all, a present for the grandparents and would be treasured that much more.

Here's my cute little helper. She sure loves mommy's craft room! And she's pretty good at this stuff for only being a year and a half old.

I lined 24 candy bars up in each box. And again after my daughter took them all back out.

Here are the finished products! (The orange crayon is my daughter's artwork. She also contributed with the hearts and flowers.)

And a close-up again of the finished product.

This was fun but a little time consuming. I think next year I'll go back to my cookies :) But I did like how the little candies looked peeping through the window.

Sunday, February 6, 2011

Go Steelers! And have a cookie.

I married into a big Steelers family, so it is fun to have a reason to watch the superbowl this year.

I thought I would celebrate by making cookies. Cookie decorating is one of those things that I love to do but haven't quite mastered yet. I look for tips anywhere I can. This time around I found some new recipes for the cookies and frosting from my favorite baking blog. (Check her out, she's awesome!!)

Once my cookies were baked and cooled, it was time for the fun part!

First I found a picture of a Steelers helmet (that wasn't black--I cannot figure out how to make a decent black frosting.) I printed it out (only to realize that our non-photo printer doesn't have any color ink in it) and made some sketches and notes. This was the first time I'd done real prep work; I usually just wing it. It made a big difference having a map to follow.

Here's a picture of all of my cookies lined up and ready to go. I've found it helps to keep them on the cooling racks. They are slightly elevated so that, if frosting does run off, it won't pool around the cookie.

And here are the finished products.

The football:

And the helmet. Due to size limitations, I ended up opting to do only the red star on the helmet.

And here they are all together! Ready to be gobbled up by some hungry Steeler fans. I'm very proud that only one didn't make it to the party. I could have done some serious eating last night!!