DIY Stamp & Die Storage From Dollar Tree

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Easy storage for stamps, dies, embossing folders, and stencils!

If you’ve been paper crafting for a while, you probably have quite a few stamp sets/dies, and will be in need of some sort of storage system. I recently noticed that I was needing a better way to store my stamps and dies… so, I went online shopping for a better storage system. I liked the products offered but did not like the high prices. I decided that I would make my own stamp and die storage system myself – I am a crafter, after all! 😉

Below, I have linked the supplies for you, just to give you an idea of what to purchase. It would be best to purchase in person since the Dollar Tree website is for bulk orders only. Also, I linked to some Dollar Tree items which are available to order on eBay. In the event that your local Dollar Tree does not carry the supplies needed, you can find them for a comparable price elsewhere.

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Storage Bin

Jot Clear Tape

Jot Report Covers

Locker Magnet Sheets

Instructions:

Note: I will post the basic written instructions here, but will have more detailed images and instructions on my YouTube video which is posted below.

STEP 1: The stamp & die storage is very easy to make using the items from the Dollar Tree as well as some craft items you probably already have. Begin by removing the plastic spine off your report covers. One end is already sealed, so be sure to leave the sealed end intact. Use your scissors or paper trimmer to cut the report covers to the desired size needed to house your stamps and/or matching dies.

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STEP 2: After you have your plastic report cover sheets cut to size, use your clear tape to seal the two sides (leaving the top open to insert stamps & dies). If you have a Fuse Tool, this would be ideal – but if not, the clear tape works like a charm!

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STEP 3: At this point, you can slip your stamp sheets into the storage pockets you’ve just created and call it done… but, I added some cardstock with tabs into my pockets so I could label the stamp set. Also, some of my stamps had matching metal dies. In order to keep the dies with the stamp set, I cut some magnetic sheets to size and affixed the dies. The stamps and dies (both) fit nicely into the storage pockets! I filed mine in a Dollar Tree storage bin for easy access.

dtsbQuick Tips: If you have loose stamps without acetate OR some that you’ve unmounted from wood blocks, you can use acetate or clear overhead projector transparencies (cut down to size) to affix your stamps to. This way, they will be protected and slide into your storage pockets easily.

Another great idea is to use these storage pockets to store your dry embossing folders, stencils, and more! You can label/file them in the storage bin for easy access.

To see the video of how to make the storage pockets in today’s blog, please be sure to check out the video below. Have a happy crafty day! 😉

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5 Ways to Fake Good Handwriting

5 Ways to Fake Good Handwriting

I have a theory. My theory isn’t scientifically-based – it’s just a theory I have to console myself for my poor penmanship. Here goes… My theory is that most artists have bad handwriting. See – there’s no way I can validate that; but it does make me feel a bit better about things! Haha!! 😉

If you’re like me and do not excel in the handwriting department, then this post is for YOU! When I started Bible Journaling a year or two ago, I knew that I’d need to improve my handwriting for this art form. The tips and tricks I’m going to share with you are from what I’ve learned over the past couple of years.

You can use your new and improved handwriting for more than Bible Journaling alone – it may also be used when addressing envelopes, writing in handmade cards, in your planner or traveler’s notebook, and even for gift tags. In random order, some things to try are…

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1.) Letter Stencils: They are affordable, easy to use, and make your handwriting look amazing! Check out this amazing stencil HERE!

2.) Graphite: Yes, it’s true – the graphite (pencil lead) technique can help you as you practice your handwriting. What is it? Well, let’s say you have a fast food paper sack with a nice font on it… simply cut away that portion of the sack and color graphite all over the opposite side. Then, when you flip the paper around and trace/outline the text on front, it will transfer onto your paper underneath. Similarly, you can also use graphite paper or copy paper. Check out my video below to see this technique in action!

3.) Calligraphy Stamps: Many stamp companies have beautiful, alphabet text stamps. You can find a variety of fonts available – from stick letters to calligraphy! This is a great way to get the look of good handwriting in a pinch, but also a nice way to learn how to write in a calligraphy style. You can study the letters and trace them to build good muscle memory and teach yourself how to write beautifully. I will list a few calligraphy options for you: Kelly Creates, Recollections, Sweet ‘n Sassy Stamps, Crafter’s Companion, or Concord & 9th.

4.) Use a Ruler: A lot of what makes our handwriting look bad is that our letters may be wobbly or crooked. You’d be amazed at the improvements you can see from simply taking your time and using a ruler when printing (doesn’t work for cursive). This technique is ideal for making tall, narrow stick letters. I prefer a T-Square Ruler that doesn’t shift.

5.) Enhancing a Basic Font: Let’s build upon the previous idea of making stick letters with a ruler – but take it a step further. Now that you have the stick letters, you can practice enhancing your basic font to make it something different. For example, you may want to thicken the lines or add horizontal lines to the bottoms and tops of the letters. A good pen (like the Sakura Micron or DoCrafts Pens) helps this process a lot! The possibilites are endless.

Out of all of these tips, the best advice I can give is to practice and take your time writing! I hope these tips will come in handy for you. Please consider following my blog and YouTube channel for more great content. Until next time, enjoy practicing!!

 

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Maymay Made It Craft Haul & Announcement!!

Hello everyone, it’s Maranda – coming to you today with a fun craft haul AND a very exciting announcement! Let’s begin with the announcement…

First off, let me set the stage… If you love to watch craft YouTube videos – you are probably familiar with the channel called Maymay Made It Crafts. Not only is she a very successful craft YouTuber with over 160k followers, but she has her own line of awesome stamps and dies. Plus, she has a craft store with lots of great products! Amy Helms, better known as Maymay, is a very down-to-earth, talented, and fun person. She has gained many followers on Instagram where she features crafty creations by her design team.

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Now, onto the big news… I have been asked to be on her Instagram Design Team!! I was so honored to join her team since I admire her faith, talent, and charisma! So, you will be seeing projects from me (and other talented team members) weekly posted on her Instagram page HERE.

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I also have a craft haul from Maymay’s store. Check out all of the wonderful products in my video below. Thanks for stopping by today… I hope you have a happy, crafty day! 🙂

Space Saver Tip: How to Unmount Wood-Mounted Stamps

Let’s face it – the majority of us need to save space in our craft area (so we can shop for more goodies! Just joking, of course). One great way to minimize clutter is to unmount those big, bulky wood-mounted stamps.

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It’s quite an easy task to unmount and store your wood-mounted stamps. All you really need is a heat tool, a Zig glue pen, and some acetate (or clear overhead projector transparency sheets will work). For added assistance, a craft spatula might even come in handy – but not required.

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You’ll begin by using your heat tool to melt/loosen the glue that is holding the stamp onto the wooden block. Don’t burn yourself or melt your stamp – just leave on long enough to soften the bond. Once it’s loosened, you can either peel it off the wood with your fingers or use your craft spatula – as mentioned above.

Sometimes, the stamp will come off with the entire foam backer and remain all in one piece. Other times, the rubber stamp will separate from the foam. Don’t worry – either way, the stamp can still be used and is NOT ruined.

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To store your newly unmounted stamps, I recommend sticking them to a sheet of acetate or overhead projector transparency sheets – as we discussed earlier. Sometimes, the back of the rubber stamp will still have enough stickiness on it to stick directly to the acetate with no problems… other times, it won’t stick. If your unmounted stamp is not sticky on the back, simply use your Zig glue pen (linked above) to add a little tackiness to the back. Allow to dry a moment before placing onto acetate sheet.

All done!! Wasn’t that easy?! Check out the Before & After picture below to see how much space I saved by unmounting my wood-mounted stamps! The acetate sheets on the right are stacked, so it may be hard to see all the stamps; but that is ALL of the stamps unmounted… amazing, huh?

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P.S. I plan on showing how I organize all of my stamps in a future video (possibly next month), so be sure to follow my blog and my YouTube channel so you don’t miss out! For more details, you can also check out my companion video below. Thanks for stopping by today! Have a happy, crafty day!

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DIY Alcohol Ink Shimmer Spray + Ideas

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Only a few supplies needed!

If you’ve been a paper crafter or mixed media artist for any length of time, you will most likely be familiar with ink sprays such as Dylusions. If you’re not familiar with ink sprays, they are basically spritzer/mister bottles filled with fast-drying colorant that are great for all types of projects – from mixed media projects to wood, canvas, or paper projects! They are also great to make custom backgrounds for cards, gift tags, and all types of art!

Today, I’m going to show you an easy and inexpensive way to make your own ink sprays – but we will take it up a notch and add shimmer!! I will be showing you how to make colored shimmer sprays today – but you can also make them without a color base to have a clear, shimmer spray. The beauty part is – these sprays are fast drying, versatile, quick, and inexpensive to make. I have the recipe below to make your very own alcohol ink shimmer spray – so let’s do this!!

Supply “Ingredients” List

(Click for links if applicable)

Tap Water or Bottled     Mini Spray Mister     Metal Mixing Ball   

Liquid Hairspray     Acrylic Paint     Isopropyl Alcohol     Small Funnel

Shimmery Mica Powder     Small Measuring Scoop


Recipe for Alcohol Ink Shimmer Spray

20180622_232052_wmStep 1: First off… RELAX! This is not an exact science – just get the right size spray mister bottle and you’ll be set. Begin with a 0.68 oz. mini spray mister bottle (linked above, also). Pour your Isopropyl Alcohol into the bottle using your small funnel. The higher the percentage of alcohol, the faster drying your ink spray will be (but most any percentage will work). Fill the bottle with alcohol about 3/4 full.

Step 2: Add a quick “dash” of liquid hairspray. This is added in order to suspend your shimmer spray so it will mix in nicely and not all sink to the bottom when in use. If I had to estimate, I’d say a quick “dash” would be about 1/2 to 3/4 of a teaspoon. Again – not an exact science. The brand doesn’t really matter too much – but I have the kind that I used linked above.

Step 3: Now it’s time to add color! If you want a clear shimmer spray, skip this step. If you want a colored base to your shimmer spray, simply choose the acrylic paint in the color you desire. Put in enough acrylic paint to fill about 1/4 of your mini spray mister bottle. If I were guessing, I’d say that’s approximately 2-3 teaspoons full.

Step 4: Ready to add the shimmer?! For this step, be SURE you have shimmery mica powder and NOT chunky glitter. The chunky glitter is too large to spray properly and can clog your mini mister bottle. If you don’t have a shimmery mica powder, you can use a loose, shimmery eyeshadow in the color of your choice (since most eyeshadow is essentially made from mica powder). I used my small measuring scoop and put a couple of scoops in. If you don’t have a small scoop to measure with, just add the amount of shimmer to your liking (but don’t overdo it or it will be too chalky). If you want it less shimmery than mine, simply add less.

Step 5: At this point, add enough ROOM TEMPERATURE water to top your mini spray mister bottle off. It will probably only take about 1/4 or less water at this point to fill your spray bottle. Before shaking up your mixture, you might want to add a metal mixing ball which will help your color to mix nicely. This is optional, though. Go ahead and swirl, shake, and mix your spray until it appears well mixed. You’re now ready to use your spray! Always be sure to shake it up really well before use.

20180622_231418_wmTIPS: Depending on how close or far you hold your mister to your project determines the look of the mist. If you want a fine mist, simply hold the mister bottle further away when spraying. Alternately, you can unscrew the lid and use the stem of the sprayer to drip splatter onto your project, if that is the desired look you’re going for. If you don’t want shimmer in your spray, do not add the liquid hairspray or shimmer.  Also, remember to protect your work surface from overspray. If you want to see how I made my shimmer spray AND see some ideas of things you can do with your shimmer spray, check out my video below!

 

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[UNEDITED] Husband Does My Voiceover for DIY Birthday Card Video! :~)

Next month, my husband (Josh) and I will celebrate our 17th wedding anniversary! So, I thought it would be fun to feature him on one of my YouTube craft tutorial videos doing my voiceover for me! Thankfully, he was a good sport and agreed. This was all in fun, but I must say – he did great for his first voiceover! 🙂

↓ In the video, I am making this very quick and easy Birthday card ↓

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If you want to make a similar card, I have provided you with links to all of the products you’ll need. And if you’ll scroll to the bottom of this post, I will include the fun video for you to watch! Until next time, keep on crafting!


Supply Links:

Cardstock     Gina Marie Scallop Die     Stamp     Acrylic Block     Foam Tape    

Ink Pad     Scissors     Ribbon     Glue Runner     Circle Punch     Glue Dots

 

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