Saturday, November 22, 2008

Christmas uses for the Graphically Speaking Cricut Cartridge

I really like the Graphically Speaking cart - almost as much as the Wild Cards cart! Just browsing through it, I came up with a list of cuts we COULD use for Christmas cards, altered art, tags, and LO's. Here's my list - have fun playing!

Christmas Cuts from the Graphically Speaking Cartridge

Bare Tree Imag01-s

Together (word) Image02 using TYPE feature

Heart Image02 using ICON feature (two sizes available)

Gas light Image04 using ICON feature or ICON Blackout feature

Memories (word) Image04 using TYPE feature

Man in the Moon Imag05-s using WORD feature

Moments (word) Image06 using PHRASE feature

Remember (word) Image06 using WORD feature

Bordered frame Imag09-s

Scalloped frame Image 10 using ICON feature or ICON Blackout feature

Heart outlines Image11 using ICON feature or ICON Blackout feature

Stars in an oval Image15 using ICON feature or ICON Blackout feature

Oval bordered frame Imag15-s using ICON feature or ICON Blackout feature

Star outline Imag16-s using ICON feature or ICON Blackout feature

Oval frame Imag21-s

Dotted frame Imag24-s

Open book Imag24-s using ICON feature or ICON Blackout feature

Readers holding book Image24 using ICON feature or ICON Blackout feature

Cup Image28 using ICON feature or ICON Blackout feature

Steam Imag28-s

Circle bordered frame Imag29-s

Snow in square (word) Image29 using WORD feature

Brrr… (word) Imag20-s using WORD feature

Snowflakes Image29 using ICON feature or ICON Blackout feature

Shhh…. (word) Image32 using WORD feature

Rectangle sign shape Imag37-s

Circle with edge dots Imag46-s

Elegant frame Imag49-s

Elegant frame Imag50-s

NOTE: I've made a Word document with this list, if you cannot cut and paste the list from the blog, e-mail me and I'll send it to you.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Christmas Doings

Goodness! Before we know it the big day will be here. Look below for an entry about how to make Christmas-time serendipity squares. I used Christmas cards (not handmade!) that we received last year for the holidays. Meanwhile, I've been making a few Christmas cards which I will share with you here. One that's been popular on the Cricut Messageboard is a round card, with a patterned paper Teddy Bear on front. I hope you are well on your way to making cards for the holidays, too!

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

In Love with Cricut's Wild Card

I've been studying the Wild Card cartridge, and decided to make a list of all the sayings available on this cart. I'm ecstatic - FINALLY - a cart that has "Happy New Year" on it!!! If you're a card maker, you'll for sure want this cart. Janet and I plan to place an order in the next few weeks, if you want to pre-order and pay up front, we'll sell you the cart for $45.00 plus your shipping (by the way, $45.00 is what WE pay for it!). Call it about $52 with shipping in the US (we do ship internationally, at actual cost).

But - forget about the sale right now - I just want to talk about the expressions ON the cart. Three of the features have sayings. There is the always-present "to" and "from" - (how MANY of these do we need??).....but there are lots of new, cool sayings, too.

I've made an alphabetized list of all the sayings. If you'd like it (in a Word file) e-mail me ( I like "Cold Hard Cash" and "Snail Mail" and "Miss Talking to You" and "You Make My Heart Sing" (makes me want to do a "Wild Thing" card).

Besides the many useful sayings, the cards and matching envelopes are totally darling! Wild Card - a truly COOL cart!

Here's the LIST of Wild Card Sayings:

#1 Teacher

A Change of Address

A Lovely Easter to You

Be My Valentine

Bloom Where You’re Planted

Bon App├ętit

Cold Hard Cash



For the Graduate

For You


From Our House to Yours

From the Heart

Get Better

Hand Made With Love

Happy Birthday

Happy Father’s Day

Happy Halloween

Happy New Year

Happy $hopping

Happy Thanksgiving



How Thoughtful

I Like You

I Love You

I Missed Your Birthday

It’s a Bridal Shower Baby

It’s a Girl

It’s Your Day

I’ve Been Missing You


Just Because


Merry Christmas

Miss Talking to You

New Arrival

Oh Happy Day (in a circle)

Our Wedding

Par Avion

Season’s Greetings


Snail Mail

Special Delivery

Stamped with Love

Thank You


Thanks (a second style)


Thinking of You


With Sympathy


You Did It

You Made My Day

You Make My Heart Sing

You’re Invited

You’re Simply the Best

Have fun with Wild Card - great for cards, useful for LO's too!

Thursday, August 21, 2008

This is an invitation that I made for a shower that I am giving. I used the Cricut and my Design Studio Software to create it. The tag and the bells are from the Wedding Solutions Cartridge.

The envelope is a combination of the same tag and a scalloped edge card from the New Arrival Cartridge welded together. The edge around the tag is cut out of the Rose Red and attached on the top of the white tag. The envelope is Stampin' Up double sided Designer Series Paper.

Monday, July 28, 2008

Altered Art from the Medicine Cabinet

You know you are a true scrapper when everything you touch is looked at with wondering eyes - what could you make with that thing you are just about to throw away? For months now, I've been sticking an estrogen patch on myself twice a week, and noticing the little semi-circular clear transparent backing tabs. Perfect shape, perfect material for LO's and cards. So, I started saving the clear backing and thinking about what I could do with them.

Believe it or not, I dragged a handful of them all the way to Mexico for a week of scrapping with Janet. She laughed pretty hard at my idea to alter the perfect little semi-circles....but I thought they would make perfect little tabs. So I sat around and played - and came up with quite a list of things to do with these remains from estrogen patches.
  • Ink the edges and write words inside with a Sharpie pen
  • Use alcohol ink on one side, flip it over and add a rub-on or a stamp
  • Put perfect pearls on the back
  • Back the tab with patterned paper
  • Stamp on it using Staz-On ink and tiny patterns or designs
I'm betting YOU could come up with even more ideas for how to alter the pull-tabs from the back of estrogen patches. The question is, have you ever altered anything weirder? If so, leave a comment and let me know - we'd LOVE to see a picture! Look to the right for a slide show of my altered patch backings.

Sunday, June 1, 2008

Making Serendipity Square Paper with Recycled Christmas Card Fronts

Our June 2nd edition of The Scrapbook Spirit's e-zine (click here to be added to our e-zine list) will feature an article about making Cricut cuts on serendipity paper. Here's a tutorial on how the paper was made:
Step One: Gather up left over or about-to-be-tossed store-bought Christmas cards and tear off the fronts. (Top right picture.)
Step Two: Tear the card fro
nts up into various sized pieces and shapes. (Second picture, right.)
Step Three: Run the torn pieces through a Xyron, or use another method to put adhesive on the back side of your torn pieces. In the picture at left, you can see my torn card pieces after I have put them through my Xyron 510.
Step Four: Pick a pick of 12 by 12 scrapbook paper in a solid color that will coordinate with the
torn pieces. For Christmas, it's easy to use a green, red, or white paper. Do not use cardstock as it makes the resulting Serendipity Paper too thick to be cut easily by your Cricut.
Step Five: Begin to adher
e your torn card pieces to the 12 by 12 piece of scrapbook paper, in any random fashion. You can leave small areas of the background scrapbook paper showing through, you do not have to completely cover the background paper. (Picture at left shows my paper almost covered by the torn card fronts.)
Step Six: Once you have covered your background paper with the torn strips, you can also randomly stamp designs on top of the torn card pieces (in this case, I used two or three Christmas themed stamps and red ink.) This step is optional. The end result is to give the Serendipity Paper a more distressed, antique, or collaged look. The picture at right shows the ink pad and one of the Christmas stamps I used to randomly stamp over the torn card fronts.
Step Seven: To further give your paper a collaged, artsy look you can also randomly place letter stickers in a coordinating or contrasting color on top of the torn squares. This is a great
way to use up letter stickers you no longer want or use. Again, this is an optional step. The second picture at right shows the letter stickers I used on this Serendipity Paper. They were left over from another project and it was great to put them to good use!
Step Eight: Your Serendipity Paper is complete and is ready to trim and cut. From the back side, you'll see that your card pieces hang over the edge of the 12 by 12 scrapbook paper, but no worries, you will just trim these edges off using a paper cutter or paper trimmer.
Step Nine: Create! You can trim your paper into the tradition two inch by two inch Serendipity Squ
ares and use these on cards, tags, scrapbook pages, and altered art. You can put the 12 by 12 sheet of your paper into your Cricut (E-bug) or cut a 6 by 12 piece and use your smaller Cricut. Cut shapes out to use on cards, scrapbook pages or tags. The picture shows a snowman I cut from the Christmas Cheer cartridge with my Cricut. See our June 3rd issue of The Scrapbook Spirit e-zine for pictures and how to work with your Circut and your Serendipity Paper.

Making Serendipity Paper is like making a crazy quilt. You can use up all sorts of paper scraps and end up with interesting pattern, texture, and design. Have fun playing with your paper scraps, and be sure to send us a few picutres, we'd love to see!

Friday, May 16, 2008

Embellishing the Stitched Spine Tabbed Album

I had such fun deciding how to embellish the front, spine, and inside pages of my stitched spine tabbed album. (See instructions for how to assemble the album in the blog post below.) The idea of putting the album's title on the spine pleased me, so I experimented with letter sizes, ending up with letters cut from Cricut's Zooballoo (ZB) cartridge at 3/4 inch from patterned paper (CTMH's Boom-Di-Ada paper and card stock). The letters are shadowed using hollyhock card stock, which matches some of the inside pages of the album. To help the eye distinguish between the words "On Our Lake" I put a dot of bling between each word. (The bling was from some Heidi Swap bling I had on hand, which matches the hollyhock colored card stock.)

On the album's cover, I cut a one-inch strip of the "rick-rack" patterned paper from the Boom-Di-Ada paper collection and adhered it to the right edge of the album cover. Next, I used coordinating CTMH fiber, wrapping it around the cover twice so that two strands of fiber show on the album front. Inside, the fibers are tied in a bow. This helps make the embellishment for the inside cover page, as well.

Using the Fabulous Finds (FF) cartridge with my Cricut, I cut Tab 4 at 2 1/4 inches Real Dial Size (RDS) to make the tab that goes on top of the tab on the album cover. It is cut from another patterned paper from Boom-Di-Ada, and the center is a solid coordinating card stock. I cut the tab in half so that it did not actually wrap around to the inside of the page. Using coordinating colored small brads, I attached them first before adhering the tab to the cover (I didn't want the brad's legs to show on the inside cover). The words "Good Times" are stamped inside the tab using Sweet Leaf ink from CTMH. The "Good Times" stamp is also from a CTMH stamp set.

The flower on the album front is Accent 46 from the Accent Essentials (AE) cartridge cut at 3 inches Real Di
al Size (RDS), from patterned paper. It is backed with the yellow from the Boom-Di-Ada collection. In the center I used a patterned chipboard flower from Prima with the CTMH fiber tied through the button holes. I used the center part of the Accent 46 cut to make the little flower that is on the "vine" and put a dot of bing in the flower's center. The two "vines" are Accent 20 (using the shift key) cut at 2 inches RDS.

Decorate your tabbed album pages with the remaining patterned paper and card stock to suit your pics and journaling. Here
's a pic of the inside cover and first page of my tabbed album: I used the Spiral from Accent Essentials (cut at two inches RDS) on the corner of the top left picture on the left page. The waves on the bottom of the page are from the Going Places cartridge and are cut at 2 inches RDS.

I'd totally love to see your creations so please share your tabbed album by sending us pics (

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Sue's Stitched SpineTabbed Album

I've been experimenting with sewing on card stock, inspired by the many fantastic cards and LO's by Teriberi and others on the Cricut Message Board. This stitched album is made using the new Close to my Heart (CTMH) Boom-Di-Ada patterned paper and cardstock. I love this stuff! It's SO darling (no pun intended, LOL).

To make the tabbed album pages, I used card stock in two colors (from the Boom-Di-Ada pack). Three tabbed pages are inside the album, the fourth tabbed page serves as the wrap-around album cover. As you can see from the picture at left, this album has a spine, onto which the individual pages are sewn. The title on the spine "On Our Lake" was cut using Cricut's Zooballoo (ZB) cartridge (3/4 inches tall, and shadowed).

The tabbed pages are cut using the Fabulous Finds (FF) cartridge, at 7 inches Real Dial Size (RDS). Two pages are filefld1 cut using blackout feature, two pages are filefld2 also cut using blackout feature. I didn't want the tabs to stack on top on each other, so by using both filefolder cuts I avoided that problem. Here are a few more pics of the album pages before scoring and stitching them to the spine. At left you can see the inside three tabbed album pages after all 3 were cut. And at right you can see the three pages laying on top of each other with the tabs lined up on the right.
(The wrap-aroun
d cover is not yet cut.)

After I cut the 3 inside album pages I worked on making the spine of the album. I cut a piece of cardstock 1 inch wide and 7 inches long. Onto this spine I needed to stitch all three album pages. The picture at right shows the spine. With a pencil, I marked three stitching lines across the spine. One mark was in the middle of the inch-wide strip, at 1/2 inch. The other two marks were 1/4 inch from either edge of the spine. So, I ended up with 3 lines down the length of the spine, at 1/4 inch, 1/2 inch, and 3/4 inch.

Next, score each of
the three tabbed album pages down the exact center line of the page (see picture at left). Alternate the page colors and stitch each page to one of the lines you have drawn onto the one-inch wide spine. Since I had two pages of hollyhock and one page of sweet leaf, I started with the middle page (sweet leaf) and matched the score line in the middle of the page to the drawn pencil line in the middle of the spine (at 1/2 inch). Sew straight down the spine, matching the score line to the pencil line all the way from top to bottom. Your first page is sewn on!

Next, close the middle page you have just sewn on so that the pencil line on the right side of the spine shows. Pick up a second page and carefully sew it to that mark, matching the score line to the pencil line as you stitch. Then, in order to sew your third page, fold the other two pages over to the right side. Stitch page three along the left pencil mark on the spine, again matching the score line in the center of the page to the pencil mark on the spine. All three pages are now stitched to the spine. Here's a picture of how this will look when you are done (at right), showing the spine with the three pages stitched to it. The second picture shows the pages from the front.

Now it's time to cut the album cover. You will cut most of it on the Cricut using the same filefld1 cut you used to make some of the album pages EXCEPT you will extend the width of the paper by one inch (to make room for that one inch spine). So, you will still cut at 7 inches Real Dial Size (the height of the album) but you will stop the cut and manually add one inch to the width of the page, on the side opposite where the tab is. Here is a picture that shows the album cover, and this page is one inch wider (not taller!) than the width of the other album pages. Just for purposes of illustration, I have set an "extra" spine on this album cover so you can see that it needs to be that one inch wider to wrap around the spine. To do this, stop the Cricut from cutting that left side (opposite the tab). I used one of my other album pages, laid it on top, slipped it to the left one inch, traced around the left side of it onto the green album cover page, and then cut it with scissors.

After cutting the album cover (it's just like the album pages but it is one inch wider), I drew a pencil line down the exact center of the paper (see right, the pencil is pointing to the center line). You will be adhering the exact middle of the spine (the 1/2 inch mark where the middle page is stitched) to the pencil line you just drew on the album cover.

To a
dhere the spine to the album cover I used the adhesive from my ATG gun. As you can see in the picture at left, I ran about three "lines" with my ATG so that the entire spine was well covered with adhesive. Just "open" the album pages and page them face down on your table, so that the "back" of spine shows, and apply your adhesive. Next you will adhere the spine to the inside of the album cover. Lay the cover "face up" so that the pencil mark you made down the center line shows. Take the rest of the album, turn it over so that the sticky spine is face down, and carefully line up the center line of the spine to the pencil line that is on the album cover. Your album will now look like the picture to the right.

The next step is to score the album cover so that it
will fold nicely around the spine. To do this, lay the album down flat on your table and make two score lines, running each one right next to the edge of the spine (one on the left side of the spine, one on the right). Here's a picture with a pencil pointing where you will make the score line - right where the two colors of card stock meet. Do this on each side of the spine.

To cover the raw edge of card stock where the spine meets the album cover, I used a piece of coordination ribbon (see pic at left). You could also use a strip of the matching patterned paper. I liked the finished look that the ribbon gave, and it was just wide enough to cover that edge up. I used ribbon on both of the spine's edges.Youralbum is now complete and ready for embellishment! Here's a few pictures of the completed album.

Do you want to use this design to teach a class? You are welcome to use it if you add this blurb in its entirely to your written instructions: Designed by Sue Painter for, May, 2008. Used with her permission.

I'll show you how to embellish the album cover in the next blog post. I hope you have a lot of fun creating your tabbed and stitched spine album!

Sunday, May 11, 2008

Happy Mother's Day & We Have Winners!!

The contest to re-create Janet's Mom's Day Card is over and we are pleased to announce TWO winners. Why two? We decided to award a winner in two categories - one for a card made using the Cricut, one made without. The winners are Deborah Sanderson (for her Cricut-made card) and Teresa Gentry for her non-Cricut card. Congratulations to both! Each winner will receive a package of Queen and Company self-adhesive laser-cut felt ribbon.

Deborah's card used a cereal box instead of chipboard. Her paper is by Jitterbug, she inked it with Color Box Dark Brown, there are Skittles on the centers of a few of the flowers, and she used an oval with ribbon to keep her card closed. Here's the pics of her card - darling!

Teresa used a font downloaded from the Internet to create her non-Cricut card. Teresa says, "I made the MOM stickers using the font and glued them to each side of the insert card. The front is d
one with textured pink cardstock and a green grosgrain ribbon glued down the middle, with five rhinestone hearts. The Happy Mother's Day tag is stamped on light green paper and then glued to a patterned paper that matches the paper used on the insert cards. The three insert cards are cut 6 3/4 by 3 inches from light weight cardboard and covered with two different patterned papers. I cut three cards measuring 2 1/2 by 3 1/2 inches out of green cardstock and glued these to the insert cards for pictures. For the back, I cut three more cards that same size, from the same green cardstock. I also cut three smaller light green tags for journaling." We think Teresa's card is an awesome recreation of the Cricut made card.

Thanks to both women for joining in the fun. Look for another contest announcement soon!

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

A Word Book for a DGD

Janet used the Plantin Schoolbook cartridge to make her word book. You will need Design Studio Software to lay out the pages for the book.

Janet says:
With the shift key engaged, I used the rectangle on the bottom row, second key from the right. I sized the first rectangle 11/2" wide by 31/2" tall. Each additional rectangle was sized 1" wider than the one before it by the same 31/2" tall. I sized the letters 2" wide by 3 ½" tall. Be sure to check the weld box for each rectangle and letter. Position the letter half on the rectangle and half off. Cut the pages out of chipboard. Each page will be 1" longer than the one before it.

If you choose to make your book larger than the size I have done, each rectangle will increase in width by half of the width of the letter. Example: if your letters are 3" wide, increase the width of the rectangles by 11/2".

Next you will choose the paper to cover your chipboard book. I cut the rectangles out of patterned paper and the letters out of a solid color.

Next, go into your DSS program and remove the letters from the page. You will cut 2 of each size rectangle, one for the front of the page and one for the back. Next, create a page with the letters on it. Size the letters the same as before, 2" x 31/2". You will need 2 of each letter, checking the flip shape box for one of each. This will give you one letter turned backwards for the back of the page.

After cutting all the rectangles and letters out of paper, you will apply adhesive and attach the rectangle and then the letter to each page. The letter will overlap the rectangle. I used my Zyron 510 to apply the adhesive to the paper. You can also use a solid stick adhesive if you prefer.

You can bind your pages using a Bind-it-all. If you don't have one, you can punch holes with a rectangle punch and lace ribbon through the holes to create a binding.

Here's a link to the .cut file used to create this book.

Sunday, April 27, 2008

Contest! Make Janet's Card and Win!

It's a contest! Make your version of Janet's Mother's Day card (see below for instructions and pics), send the pics (include one of yourself) to us before Saturday, May 10th at NOON Eastern Daylight Time, and get a chance to win a package of Queen and Company laser-cut felt. The winning entry will be judged by Janet and Sue, and pics of the winner's card will be posted here on the blog.

Angelia Wigginton's Between The Two Album

A Completed Album!!

Janet and I took Angelia's class at the recent ScrapEtc event in Nashville. Here's a few shots of Sue's finished album. To view a slide show of the entire album (8 pages) click here.
What I liked:
  • The Basic Grey paper (of course, I'm a BG hound)
  • Putting sequins on paper and rub-ons, a new twist for me
  • Angelia's teaching style and excellent instructions
  • The theme of being asked to contrast two things, or scrap about the relationship between two things (thus her title, Between the Two).
My album contrasts two places my DH and I both love, even thought these two places are at the opposite ends of the earth - literally, a world apart. I'm talking about East Tennessee (where we live currently) and Bali, a small island in Indonesia.

Thanks to Angelia for the idea of this album. Slide show

Saturday, April 26, 2008

Cricut Design Studio - Survey Results!

Survey says! So far about twenty people have taken our survey (see bottom right) about the Cricut Design Studio software. One person has 'fessed up that she has it but is too afraid to use it, another that she has it but hasn't installed it yet. For those of you who are "Design Studio" wannabes, check the Cricut Message Board for a lot of help and tips. And come back here for new designs and .cut files that we will share with you from time to time.

And if you are ready to put your toe in the water, check our website and order the Design Studio software for yourself - our price is nearly half what is charged on the Provocraft site, and shipping is low.

Monday, April 21, 2008

Janet's Mother's Day Card

Just subtitute the letters DAD and make it a Father's Day Card.
We promised the complete instructions for Janet's accordion and pull tab card honoring moms, and here they are. We can't think of a mom or grandmother who wouldn't love this card, which has spaces for pics and journaling.

Accordion Pocketbook Mother’s Day Card

Supplies you need:

  • Chipboard
  • 1-12x12 double sided Paper
  • 2-12x12 Patterned paper (This does not need to be double sided)
  • Embellishments for decorating


Take the 12 x 12 double sided paper, score at 4”, turn paper over and score at 4” from the other side. Turn paper sideways and score at 4” from bottom. Fold up making a pocket. Apply a thin strip of adhesive at each fold and on both ends to form pockets.

Use your Cricut and Design Studio Software to make your letters and weld them to rectangles to make the cards to insert in the pockets. (We have three .cut files available for you that takes care of this step.)

Settings for DSS:

Letters - 3” width, 3” length

Rectangles - 3” width, 4” length

Line the letters up on top of the rectangle so that the letter overlaps the rectangle. Be sure and check the weld box for each letter and each rectangle. Cut welded letters/rectangles out of chipboard.

Next cut just the letters (same size) out of patterned paper.

Cut two of each letter, using flip image feature for the second one.

This will give you a letter for the front and the back of the card.

Then cut just the rectangles out of patterned paper. This does not have to be double sided since it will be attached to the chipboard. You will need six rectangles cut from the patterned paper, one for the front and one for the back of the chipboard.


After cutting all elements, it is time to put the cards together. I used my Zyron 510 to apply the adhesive to the back of the letters and rectangles.

You can also use a good solid adhesive stick. Liquid glue will take too long to dry and may cause the paper to pucker.

Put pattered paper rectangles on the chipboard first and then put the letters on top. This is so the letters will overlap the rectangle. Add embellishments, pictures and journaling. You're done! Be sure to send us YOUR version and we'll post it here on the blog. You can mail your pics to


  • Three .cut files are available to help you make this card. Click here to access the .cut files.
  • Janet says "This can also be done with the letters DAD for Father's Day."