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Monday, June 27, 2016

Create with love...

This is another little craft booklet.  Let's just call them idea books - that's kind of what I use them for - little ideas and notes for crafty things.  Lists of supplies, etc.  This may be my favourite though.  I love the little patterned papers used here, including the one with the little bird, and the various die cut patterns.  I love the blues used, and the browns that make the blue pop more, and how bright the red heart is.

That red heart looks super red, tucked under the blue painted chipboard.  I used a bit of pearl paint daubed over the iridescent blue acrylic paint to make the letters shimmer a bit too.  Love that look.

The back is full of pattern and colour too, and a little bird peeking out as well.

I had so much fun making these little idea books.

I will be entering this as another entry into this week's Challenges at the SimonSaysStamp blog, for the Monday Patterned Paper Challenge, and the Wednesday Add Some Shimmer Challenge.

Simon Says Stamp Wednesday Challenge Blog Simon Says Stamp Monday Challenge Blog

Whoops - a bit late for the patterned paper challenge.... maybe I can enter it into the new challenge when it gets posted <sheepish grin>...

Sunday, June 26, 2016

Cranberry Chocolate Chip Cookies

Another baked treat I made this weekend, for the Saturday workshop day we had for the Craftster Canada Meet Up in Toronto.  These are cookies that I adapted from a Bon Appetit recipe, that my family has quite enjoyed several times.  They seemed pretty popular this time too so I thought I would share in case any of my new friends would like to make more!

Cranberry Chocolate Chip Cookies
makes 4 dozen

1 cup unsalted butter at room temperature
1 cup packed golden brown sugar
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1 tsp vanilla
2 large eggs
2 cups old-fashioned oats
1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
6 oz (1 1/4 cups) dried cranberries
4-6 oz white chocolate chips
4-6 oz semi sweet chocolate chips
(I put 6 oz of each into this batch, it does depend on how much chocolate chips you want, and you can certainly use all milk chocolate, or semi sweet chocolate if you are not a fan of white chocolate chips)

Pre-heat oven to 375F.

In a large bowl, beat the butter with sugars until creamy and fluffy, with mixer.  Add vanilla and eggs and beat until well combined.  In a separate bowl, combine flour, oats, baking soda, and salt, and mix well.  Gently mix into butter mixture until well combined.  Mix in dried cranberries and chips.

On parchment covered baking sheet, using two tablespoons, drop dough onto sheet, about 2 inches apart.

Bake in middle of oven until tops are golden brown - about 18 minutes.  Let cool on sheet about 5 minutes and transfer to rack to cool fully.

*** these can be made gluten free by subbing in gluten free oats, and baking soda, and using a gluten free flour mix, but I found that it made for a softer, cakier cookie.

Easy Lemon Berry Tarts....

These are very zesty, and super easy lemon tarts.  I love lemony things - and goodness knows I love easy too!  I have made these with many berries, including ripe mulberries right off my tree and they have been zippy and tasty each time.  But I especially love them with blueberries.  I made a batch of these for a recent Craftster Meet Up in Canada and they seemed to go over well, so I am re-posting the recipe with the modifications I made before.  The only thing I wonder would be if they would be better if I par-bake the shells for 10 minutes before hand and let them cool, for a nicer crust.

Lemon Berry Tarts
makes about 20-22

2 dozen 3" frozen tart shells
2 large eggs
3 egg yolks
1 pint berries (I have made these with either blueberries, raspberries, or mulberries)
3/4 cup sugar - scant
2 large lemons

Preheat oven to 400F.

Lay tart shells out on a baking sheet, covered with foil or parchment paper.  Place cleaned berries on the bottom of each shell, and set aside.

In a medium bowl, beat eggs and yolks with sugar.  Clean the two lemons and dry.  Zest the lemons and add to egg mixture.  Juice the lemons to make about 1/2 cup of juice and add to egg mixture. Beat mixture with whisk until frothy.

Gently pour mixture into each tart shell until about 1/4 inch below tart edge.  Depending on how full of berries your tart shells are, you should have enough mixture to make about 20-24 tarts.

Bake in center of pre-heated oven until mixture set and cooked.  About 20 minutes.  Let cool on rack. Can be refrigerated up to 2 days.

Tip - to get more juice from ctirus when juicing them, try giving them a bit of a zap in the microwave for maybe 20 - 30 seconds, then rolling the fruit against the counter or cutting board, and the palm of your hand to give a gentle squeeze to release the juice, before cutting and juicing.   

Pendent packaging...

I recently gave in and bought some dies from Simon Says Stamp - they are the Tammy Tutterow line from Spellbinders, and are the little mini envelope dies.   They are teeny and are great for little whimisical messages or mini bits of art to add to a card, or mixed media piece or what not.

I have enjoyed playing around with them and found them to be a great size to make for packaging scrabble tile pendents and that is what I used this particular set for.  This is the window mini pocket - so it cuts an envelop with a window and a little card to fit inside.

I made the little envelope, and used the little card inside to hold the pendent so it would dangle through the window.  The bamboo pendents are a bit too large and awkward for this, but the tile pendents are perfect.  I added some stampings, to decorate.

There is a little hole cut into the flap, so I used that to make a little wrap around tie for some bakers twine.

I am happy how they turned out... and then turned around and bought some more from her line!  Can't wait to get them here... and now tempted to get a Big Shot Plus so I can get some of the larger envelope dies!

Saturday, June 25, 2016

Happy Father's Day...

These are the two Father's day cards I made this year.  I find it so hard to make masculine cards that are still elegant, and not making me think of the popcorn card I made when I was 8, and hope this hit the mark.

I wanted something with lots of texture, and chose two patterned kraft papers - the stripe, and the graph paper.  I inked up the edges in Pumice Stone to take away that cut raw edge look.

To add a bit of elegance I took a large Tim Holtz flourish stamp and stamped over the graph paper with Versamark ink and sprinkled a champagne gold powder over it and heat embossed.  I quite like how the champagne gold looks on the kraft paper brown.

I thought about black, or copper, and it would have worked probably too - but I thought the gold would be softer and lighter.

I made an A2 sized base card from textured card stock in a muted olive green and a burgundy red, and layered the patterned paper over the face, leaving about an eighth of an inch all around.  I made the stronger pattern a bit smaller, and layered some washi tape in between to break up the edges and add a bit of visual interest.

For the one, I used a couple of patterns of washi paper and set them on more of an angle.  For a dimensional element, I wrapped some gray-brown striped bakers twine several times around and tied it over a vintage brass button, over the washi tape.  Then I made some stamped banners and layered them over each other for the sentiment.

The dads appeared to like them - they are both the silent types - but I always hear from my niece how my mother and father talk about how handy I am and how they like that... that always gives my crafty little heart a glow and a smile :)

Anyways, the budget could always use a little boost to help it in the craft supply department, no matter what the hubs may say, so I am also entering this in this week's challenges at the Simon Says Stamp Challenge blogs - the use patterned paper challenge at the Monday Challenge blog, and adding some shimmer, at the Wednesday Challenge Blog... wish me luck!

Simon Says Stamp Wednesday Challenge Blog Simon Says Stamp Monday Challenge Blog