Tag Archives: Arts

Christmas for the Girls

This year I have decided to make as many of the Christmas presents as I can this year.   For some of the girls I have made these journals with a coordinating bracelet.


Is there a girl in your life who would love a pretty journal like one of these?  Instructions on how to make your own can be found in the Art Journal Tutorial.

Find the supplies you need to complete your own journal, and all your paper crafting projects at Home and Garden Welcome.


In the meantime, Happy Holidays and may you find plenty of moments to craft!



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Guest Design Team Call

Do you have a passion for creating?  Like to design unique projects that are unpredictable and amazing?  We are looking for three designers to create projects using our Mystery Craft Kit.

How does it work?

You will receive a box of goodies with a retail value up to $100 (if purchased by an actual contestant the cost of the kit is $50).  You must keep the contest of the kit confidential during the month you are the guest designer. You must use all the items in the kit in a prominent way in your final project. (If a pack of paper is included you do not have to use EVERY pattern in the pack.) Write a short tutorial on how you created the project and how you incorporated the items that came in your kit. Return the tutorial with high quality images to Home and Garden Welcome no later than the 15th of the month you are designing for, I am currently looking for designers for October, November and December 2012.

You must post your project on your blog with a link back to both http://www.homeandgardenwelcome.wordpress.com and http://www.homeandgardenwelcome.com.  Details and information for links will be included in information sent to the guest designer.

Who should apply?

I welcome entries for all crafting types, from card makers and scrapbookers to mixed media artists I encourage you to apply. You must have a blog you update regularly (at least 1 time weekly) and be willing to link both the Home and Garden Welcome blog and online store to your blog.

How do I apply?

First, check the Home and Garden Welcome Mystery Craft Contest page for information on the contest as available to paying participants (as a guest designer you are not eligible to participate in the contest).  You can get an idea of what may be in the kit as well as what others have created with the past kits.

After checking out the Mystery Craft Contest page send an email with the following information to ngillette@homeandgardenwelcome.com with  “design team call” as the subject line. Please include images of 3 projects you have completed in the past, trying to keep in mind the types of products you saw on the Mystery Craft Contest page and answer the following questions:

  1. Why do you want to be a guest designer for the Mystery Craft Contest from Home and Garden Welcome?
  2. What design teams do you currently participate in, or have participated in over the past 12 months? (Prior design team participation is NOT necessary for this call.)
  3. What is the address of your Blog?
  4. Please include your first and last name, e-mail address and mailing address and what month you would be most interested in designing. (October, November or December)

~All applications due no later than midnight EST Aug 31st, 2012~

How will the winning designers be notified?

The three people who are selected as guest designers will be notified by September 5th by email.  You will receive information at that time as to what month you will be designing for and when you can expect to receive the mystery kit.

Good Luck!  I am looking forward to seeing all of your fabulous creations!



Filed under Artistic Expression

Embellishments beyond the crafting isle

Usually when looking for embellishments for our scrapbooks or handmade cards we stroll down the paper crafting isle in our local (or online) stores. Sometimes we may venture a little way out from the edges of these isles.  Maybe looking in the sewing notions for unique buttons or interesting ribbons. And maybe even in a stretch you may head down the wood crafts isle for paints, wooden letters or stains.  Some won’t even venture that far.  I am giving you all a personal challenge – use something WAY out of the ordinary in a scrapbook layout!

Here is a two page layout I made after a humorous incident that happened on a hike during last summer’s family vacation.

Do you see that there?  Yes it is, I used a crushed water bottle to embellish this page.  My daughter got a water bottle at lunch (much like the one on the page) and took it along with her on a hike.  Climbing up a set of stairs she tripped and her water bottle went tumbling down the side of the hill.  As you can tell by the pictures, she was as crushed as the bottle on the page at the loss of such a great friend.

Here is the water bottle on the page.  I used my sizzix machine to crush it (I am not recommending the sizzix as a tool for crushing your recyclables and if you so choose – do at your own risk.  There is great potential to damage your machine.) and my Xyron machine to appy the adhesive. (Again, heed above warning.) And of course the bottle is not complete without the cap! I used a liquid craft glue to attach the cap to the opposite page.

Finally, because I had a lot of the brownish colors on my page, and not much of a place for journaling I decided to use a photo as the base for my story.  I cut my daughter out of the photo then matted it on a piece of cardstock.  Next I measured my photo and the placement of the photo and mat on the original image.  Using those measurements I created a custom text box in my journaling program, wrote my story and then printed it on vellum.  After trimming my vellum to fit the picture and applying it as a covering I layered the matted cutout back in place trying my best to make sure all the lines would match up.

After adding my title and a few other little snippets of journaling my page was complete! Take a closer look at the pages….

I felt the crushed water bottle helped tell the story.  Looking at the dejected slump of the shoulders you would assume that the water bottle that was lost was something special, maybe one with her name on it or a gift from grandma, but having the disposable plastic water bottle on the page adds the humor we all found in this situation.  Okay, not all of us.  Katie still does not find much humor in these photos.

Next time you have a story to tell look for unique embellishments that will not only accent your page but help tell your story.  Went to the beach?  How about adding some glass bottles with some of the sand you collected? Or attaching some small shells?  I’ve used a fishing lure on a page, and made a ‘raft’ out of barbecue skewers on another layout.  Push yourself a little and see what you can create!

If you have risen to my challenge go ahead and comment with a link to your blog.  You may find your art featured here!

Happy Crafting


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Rainy Day Inspiration

So, it was a rainy day in Northern Michigan and I was feeling like creating something.  I just didn’t know what.  After I got out some supplies and started thinking about things I’d like to have but don’t want to buy an idea came to me.  I have nowhere in our travel trailer to keep our coffees, teas and hot cocoa mix that is cute and easily accessible.  Cool! Now I know what I want to make, but what is it going to look like?  Reaching for what sparks imagination like nothing else (the bottle of wine in the pantry) I spied this and knew what I’d make.

No, I am not going to make a loaf of bread.  I am going to make a decorative box along the lines of a bread box to match the interior of our trailer.










Istarted with chipboard.  I knew this was going to have to be pretty sturdy so I planned on doubling up the chipboard for the sides and the top.  I rough sketched an arc on one sheet of chip board and cut it out with a craft knife.  Using the first side piece as a pattern I cut out the second side.  Next I cut  a strip about 1/8″-1/4″ out to create the base of the groove the lid will move in. Then I glued the pieces I cut out onto another sheet of chipboard.  I cut 1/8″ off the  back and bottom of my side pieces so they would fit together better later in the process. Finally I cut a flat edge off the top of each arc so the top to my box would fit nicely.  The last image is not correctly oriented – it shows the top of one side and the bottom of the other.  Make sure when you are gluing your pieces together you have 2 mirror images, NOT exact copies!!!









I set the sides aside (see what I did there?  Pretty funny, eh?) to dry and began working on the door of my box.







I began with 2 sheets of chipboard, cutting them into 1/2″ strips.  Once the strips were cut I aligned them as perfectly as possible and glued a piece of flexible fabric to the back side.  This held the strips together as I was working on the front of my box.









As this sheet is drying I began to work on the front of my box.  I wanted a toile-ish look to the front of my box but did not have any paper that had what I was looking for so I decided to make it myself.  Starting with a sheet of white cardstock I stamped images on the paper in red and brown ink and embossed them using different shades of red embossing powder.  Next I used an inkssentials blending tool to add Tim Holtz distress inks in scattered straw and brushed corduroy to the background.  I was very pleased with the result.










After my paper was finished I glued it to the cover of my breadbox (opposite of the side my fabric was glued on) and added stitching detail with dark brown memory floss.  I was very happy with the way things were coming together at this point in time. I had a glass cabinet pull just waiting to be used in a project like this.  I punched a hole in one of the slats and used a small bolt to tighten the cabinet pull in place. (It doesn’t show up in these pictures, look for it later.  It is PRETTY, I promise!)


Once my sides and covers were dry I began fitting the pieces together trying to see how the box was going to work.  Noticing that I needed a deeper groove for my door to fit in I cut 1/8″ strips of chipboard from my scraps and glued them along the inside and outside edge of the track I had created earlier.  Then I glued one side of my box to the base and the back.  Once the glue dried I painted the inside of the box with Tim Holtz Distress Crackle paint in Brushed Corduroy.  After all, the inside of the box has to be as pretty as the outside!

















The next part was a test in patience.  Aligning the cover in one groove and setting it in the opposite groove while keeping everything square and straight.  I’d advise buying any children in the vicinity some ear plugs so they are not exposed to the outbursts that may occur during this step.

Now that the back and sides are glued securely and the front is nicely seated in its track I made a small shelf/top to add some strength to the box and a little extra storage area.  It also hides the ‘rolling’ features of the door.  I did this by doubling up a few pieces of chipboard and wrapping the shelf in a coordinating paper.







Finally I added some paper to the outside of my box to finish it off.  I also added a leather strap along the middle of the arc.  I did this for a few reasons.  First off, it gave me a place to hang things like coffee scoops or tea balls inside the box.  It also added some strength to the sides of the box, the movement of the lid wanted to push the sides out allowing the lid to pop off its track.




After a few coats of a sealant here is the final project in place.  Perfect, don’t you think!






All the materials I used in this project, or at least very similar materials, are available from Home and Garden Welcome.  Stop by and find what inspires you. I’d LOVE to see what you can create!

Happy Crafting,


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Introducing the August Mystery Kit

It’s the dog days of summer. The sun is shining, the mercury is rising and small town celebrations are happening all over. Create something with this August Mystery Kit and enter it to win! Visit the Mystery Kit Contest page for full contest details. Happy Crafting!

Recommended tools:
Stamp sets and inks
Heat tool

There is still time to enter the July Mystery craft contest, and get a start on your August project, too!  Save on shipping if you order both kits together.

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June Mystery Kit

This is the June 2012 Mystery Kit available at Home and Garden Welcome.

Birds are singing, flowers are blooming, Spring Has Sprung! Use the elements in this kit to create a one-of-a-kind project showing off your talents!

Suggested tools:
Acrylic mounting blocks (6×6, 2×2, 1×6, 3×3)
Assorted inks and paints

For details about this contest visit the Mystery Craft Contest Rules page.

Kit includes:
Wire Writer & Jewelry Jig Kit
Inkadinkado Cling Stamps, Insect Amalgam
Green Stack Recycled Chipboard Embellishment Box
Flower Soft, 30ml-Spring Mix

I’ve posted this so you have an idea of what MAY be included in a Mystery Kit.  You are free to create and submit projects with this kit, however you will not be eligible to win.  The July 2012 Mystery Kit will be available soon!

Happy Crafting,



Filed under Artistic Expression