Monday, November 26, 2012

Paper People Chain Card

I recently took advantage of a very good deal on a refurbished Cricut cutter and am so happy I did. I think I could waste hours just watching it cut out shapes for no other reason that to watch it. Okay, so I am easily entertained, but it is really neat. So as a first fun test project I set about making birthday invites for 'lil man C's 2nd birthday.

Not having very many patterns to pick from I thought it would be fun to make a people chain card using the Mini Monsters and Freshly Picked cartridges that came with my machine.

After I measured my envelopes and figured out the largest size I could fit, I laid everything out in the Cricut Craft Room and got to cutting. Or rather it got to cutting and I sat staring.

Then armed with a stacks of little boy cards, green overalls and little number twos, I glued everything together including a printed invite message for the inside.

I intentionally sized the pants to not fit perfectly to give everything that messy little boy, imperfect look. Just for fun I cut out tons of extra little twos on the scrap parts of paper and tossed them in the envelopes with each invite. Everything is more fun with a little confetti!


Sunday, November 25, 2012

Make your own Piñata

My lil' man turned 2 this fall and I wanted to do something fun and original for his party and for his pictures.

I decided on a piñata for both!

With very few supplies required and no special crafting skills needed, this is probably one of the easier projects out there. If you can use scissors and tape you are all set! All you need is some cardboard, tissue paper, scissors, tape (duct tape or packing tape) and if you want you could also use hot glue or spray adhesive for a few parts, but I wouldn't run out and buy any just for this.

Start out with your cardboard. Any old large box will work just fine. I cut up the box our inflatable house came in since I could never get it to fit back in the box!

Trace out your letter or number or fun shape on to one side. Cut it out and trace it in reverse to cut out your second piece. The photo is actually the reversed piece because I wanted the box label to be on the inside when it was all finished.

Once you have your main pieces cut you'll need to decide the depth of your pinata and cut several long strips of cardboard that width. These long pieces will be taped between the front and back for shape and support.

When you have all your pieces cut, line things up and start taping. I was using cheap dollar store duct tape, so I used a lot.

Make sure you leave a gap uncovered somewhere that is large enough to fit your hand in to add candy later. I would recommend the middle of one side if your chosen shape has lots of bends or curves because candy WILL get stuck and unless you have bendy hands, it's really hard to reach inside. I left a gap at the back straight part of the 2 I made. Once your entire shape is taped up you can add the candy and seal up your hole but if, like me, you don't want candy inside while taking pictures, just make sure the hole can be sealed and covered later.

If you use packing tape, or you trust yourself to completely cover the duct tape, then you don't have to do the next part. I just quickly sprayed the entire thing with spray adhesive and put a layer of tissue paper over to better hide the duct tape.

Now comes the part you'll waste the most time on, cutting the tissue paper fringe. Cut strips a little over double the width of the length you want your fringe to be. Fold each strip in half the long way and then snip the fringe. To make things go faster take the strips and loop them around your fingers before you cut. Cutting long strips will take forever.

Finally you'll take all the strips of tissue paper fringe and wrap them layer by layer from bottom to top on your cardboard form. You can use hot glue, sticky tape or fold regular tape back over itself to create cheap double sided tape. Overlap each layer of fringe with the next as you work your way to the top. If you have any areas that are hard to wrap fringe over you can twist little squares of tissue paper on the end of a pencil eraser and stick them in to fill.

When it's all done, run your hand lightly upward across the fringe to make it all stick out.

Now it's time to find a place to hang your piñata for party fun, or to use it in your photos, or both.