Special Guest Blogger: Deena Wuest

03/12/2010 at 3:49 pm | Posted in guest blogger, technique | 9 Comments
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Hey CKers! Deena Wuest here. Just dropping by today to drop off a quick and fun project for you all.

We all look for ways to help the environment—recycling, taking shorter showers, switching to florescent lightbulbs, etc. And while these are all important steps, they don’t necessarily fall into the category of “fun.” Well, today we’re taking the three Rs (Reduce, Reuse, and Recycle) and applying them to our home turf. And guess what? They not only reside under “fun,” but they help the environment and keep *your* green in your wallet as well! It’s all about using what you have in fresh and creative ways.

Today, we’re looking at fabric. If you’re one of those multitalented gems who not only scrapbooks but can sew up a storm, then you’ll no doubt have lots of fabric remnants in your craft room. Take a look at them with a fresh set of eyes, and put them to work in your albums or craft projects! If you don’t have fabric scraps lying around, do what I did and ask your local home-design store for expired fabric swatch books. On the day I went, the store had more than my family could carry! And they were 100% free! So we not only rescued the books from the landfill but had a blast flipping through all the fabric and thinking of the fun projects hiding within them.

Swatches come in so many cool designs, and they are the perfect size to make handmade gift bags or treasure bags. For my first project, I created a simple, long, narrow bag to hold old love letters.

Supplies: Bags: Fabric from recycled swatch book; Tag and pink button: Pink Paislee; Metal-rim tag: Making Memories; Ribbon: C.M. Offray & Son; Other: Button.

To create this bag:

  1. Cut two pieces of fabric in equal sizes, and sandwich the right sides together.
  2. Press a fold of about 0.5″ to 1″ along the top of each fabric panel.
  3. Run a straight stitch along the sides and bottom.
  4. Turn the bag right side out.
  5. Hem the fold along the top of the bag, if desired.
  6. Embellish with buttons, ribbon, or other accessories.

I have to be honest here. I can’t sew to save my life. It’s true. But if I can manage to figure out a simple straight stitch, anyone can! Don’t have a sewing machine? These projects work great using fabric-adhesive tape or any stitch-less sewing products.

Here are a few more projects I created from old fabric swatches.

Supplies: Bag: Fabric from recycled swatch book; Cardstock: Katie Pertiet; Scallop: Anna Aspnes; Word art: Ali Edwards; Binding: Zutter Innovative Products.

This little bag was created from an eyelet fabric swatch. To keep the edge detail, simply press the fold to the outside instead of the inside, and then stitch up the sides. Super simple! This bag was created to hold a mini album I carry in my purse. Not only cute, it keeps my album from getting scratched.

Supplies: Bags: Fabric from recycled swatch book; Paper and brushes: Mindy Terasawa; Font: Avenir.

We made these little bags and loaded them with favors and candy for my son’s birthday party. Photoshop + a fun robot kit = quick and easy bag toppers. Super simple, and the kids all had a fun keepsake from the party.

Supplies: Denim fabric: Recycled swatch book; Die-cuts: Sizzix; Chipboard accents and ribbon: Little Yellow Bicycle; Font: Avenir.

And don’t limit these fun little fabric swatches to just bags! I ran denim swatches through my die-cutting machine to create this little fabric album. What was once going to be thrown away I now hold as a treasured keepsake. How cool is that!

Try these other ideas too!

  1. Use a fabric swatch as photo mat on a layout.
  2. Create an interactive mini album from old denim pockets. Bind and fill each pocket with a journaling tag or a photo.
  3. Cut a large monogram from fabric for a unique accent on a layout.
  4. Create fabric flowers to use on a page.
  5. Run fabric through a die-cutting machine (or use good-old-fashioned scissors) to create fun fabric tags.
  6. Create a fabric scrapbook by covering chipboard or cardboard with fabric and stitching around the edges.
  7. Create a fabric pocket to hold memorabilia on a page.
  8. Some fabrics can even be run through your printer! Just use a temporary adhesive to adhere fabric to paper first so it won’t jam. (And check your printer capabilities first.) Lots of possibilities here. Print journaling, titles, and photos. Even entire layouts can be printed on fabric.

What other fun and creative ways do you have to use fabric scraps in your projects? I’d love to hear (and see) them! I don’t know about you, but this whole recycling thing just got a lot more fun! Happy Friday everyone!

—Deena Wuest

P.S. Don’t miss Free Font Friday! You can download CK Shadowed Block for free here. Check back next week for another new font.


Adhesive Basics

10/20/2009 at 3:20 pm | Posted in Uncategorized | 48 Comments
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Hi there, blog readers! What do you get if you mix a shiny new BMW and the kitchen sink? I don’t know, but I’d love to find out! Mixing amazing new products with already-have-lying around-the-house items can be so much fun. But  since everyday objects aren’t necessarily made with crafters in mind, one thing I rely on is good adhesive—something that will make my item attach exactly the way I want, perfect look included.

I’ve found that some hard-to-adhere items include:

  • fabric
  • vellum or clear components
  • ribbon
  • metal


Maggie Holmes solved one of these problems in her You layout, shown on page 94 of the October issue of Creating Keepsakes magazine. Notice that she has included fabric squares with a multipurpose adhesive, such as Helmar’s Craft Glue, in this cute fall-themed layout. Fabric adhesive is available in both liquid and spray forms as well as temporary and permanent forms, so be sure to read the back of the bottle carefully when you make your selections.

Tip: Use fabric adhesive to prevent fabric edges from fraying. Dab a little around the edges of your piece, and the fibers will stay put.

Vellum or clear components 

What do you do when the product you are using is see-through? Suzy Plantamura used a spray adhesive which dries clear to keep her patterned transparency in place on her Glamour Girllayout, also in the October 2009 issue, page 95. Notice that there is no adhesive glare competing with the sweet photos and the bling.

Tip: Another option to securing see-through items is to use a glue dot and place a fun embellishment (like a flower or a chipboard shape) on top of the transparency to hide the adhesive. 

Metal and Ribbon

Supplies: Patterned paper: Ronnie McCray, Chipboard: SEI. ; Ribbon: Cosmo Cricket; Stickers: Dee’s Designs, Karen Foster and SEI.; Rub ons: Glitz Design; Adhesive: Fiskars, Judikins and 3M; Other: brad, nails, patterned paper and screwdriver head.



I took the challenge on myself to see just how far I could take my adhesive with metal. In this ‘for the mechanic in your life’ themed card I included nails and a thick double-sided screwdriver head. I really wanted to know if that head could be made to hold.

I figured a liquid adhesive, such as Aleen’s Tacky Glue, was a must for this type of job. When the card was dry, I shook it and shook it. I’m pretty sure that after an earthquake that metal piece will still be found glued to its paper.


In this card I also played with ribbon. I figured that a tape or roller adhesive would have the real stick-to-it power I needed while keeping a bumpy, wet look out of the picture. I chose  double-sided scrapbooking tape for both my thick and thin ribbon. Not only did it go on easily and smoothly, but it kept both ribbons in place, regardless of weight.


Tip: When selecting a glue for ribbon, be sure to select a glue with enough stick-power. Therm O Web has some fun options in varying sizes. Perfect for lots of different sizes and types of ribbons!

So while combining BMWs and kitchen sinks may require lots of duct tape and super glue (and some muscle action!), completing a scrapbook page made with accents of many different materials can be easy and fun if you have the right adhesive.

Tips from the front lines:

*Reinforce your stickers as needed with extra adhesive. This is especially good if your sticker has lost its sticky due to repositioning or an encounter with a toddler or pet!

*If you want a brad in your layout but don’t want to punch it through the paper (maybe you have something on the other side that can’t have a hole and brad legs sticking through), remove the prongs from the brad and use small dimensional adhesive squares, such as these from Scrapbook Adhesives by 3L. You get the same look and texture without disturbing the other side of the paper.

Dorathy Gilchrist, Associate Editor

P. S. Thanks for the warm welcome last week. I loved hearing from you. I think I’ll stick around!

An Insider’s Look: CK’s July Issue

06/09/2009 at 10:17 pm | Posted in Insider's Look | 75 Comments
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maurianneHello CK friends! I’m here once again to tell you a little more about our July issue. This was so much fun to work on. (Do I say that every month? It’s true!) This was the first issue where we started incorporating some of the Simple Scrapbooks philosophy (hello SS friends!), and we’re excited to be bringing you those ideas every month. Here are just a few of the ways we’ve incorporated that idea this month:

* “Artsy Made Easy” by Mou Saha. Mou always uses fun, artsy techniques, and here she shares some of her secrets. The techniques aren’t as difficult as you think!

* In “Creative Spaces” this month, Elisha Snow shared some of her organization secrets, which also incorporate a simple style. She proves that you don’t need a large room to effectively organize your supplies.

* “Just the Essentials” by Brittany Beattie embraces part of the Simple philosophy—that it’s important to focus on the essentials when scrapbooking. Don’t let the nitty gritty details get in the way of preserving your story.

Here are a few more tidbits about this month’s issue:

* The fantastic paper/stitched sun on page 65 was stitched together by our very own Erin Bayless. There’s a reason she’s the Creative Director! It’s currently displayed in the Design room at the CK office.


* The fabric that Megan Hoeppner used in her book on page 106 was designed by Heather Bailey. In the scrapbooking world, she’s known for her paper line with Autumn Leaves, but she has many fabric lines (all of which are beautiful) as well.


* One thing many people don’t know is that the title “editor” for CK includes many different roles. One role which more than one of us has held is “furniture builder.” Lori Fairbanks, our resident fashion and trend expert (you know it’s a good day when she compliments your outfit), got to experience this role when she received the chair featured in “Hot Spot” (page 113). Let’s just say it was harder than it looks. (It took more than one of us to figure it out).

Now, we’d like to hear from you! Leave a comment telling us what you liked about the July issue by June 14, and I’ll randomly choose a winner to receive some fun summer products! Check the “giveaways” tab at the top of the blog on Monday, June 15 to see if you’re the winner!

-Maurianne Dunn, Associate Editor

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