Sorry there haven’t been any updates in a while. Andrew and I have some good news, though: We are engaged! We will be married in June. We are registered on Amazon. 🙂
For our save the date cards, we wanted to include our cats, since they are very much a part of the family. We love our kitties. We adopted Peach first, from PAWS last May. She is a very vocal cat, around 10 or 11 years old. Just a few weeks after that, we adopted Koopa and Goomba together from Andrew’s friend, who couldn’t bring the cats with her in a move. They are said to be brothers, about six years old; Koopa is very protective of Goomba. Goomba loves cuddling almost as much as treats; Koopa loves to eat but also enjoys playing with his rattling mousey toy. They are named after Super Mario characters.
The first step in making our cards was to photograph our cats! From left to right, we have Goomba, Koopa, and Peach. Andrew was inspired by pictures like these on Pinterest. The cats were not terribly cooperative, and we knew we wouldn’t be able to get them all to sit still for one picture, so we took pictures of the cats individually and I combined them in Photoshop. Besides, we have only one little chalkboard! We took about 160 photos of the cats, propping up the chalkboard with cans and baiting the kitties with treats. You can view some of our favorite individual kitty shots in this Facebook album.
The front of the card nearly the same as the Embossed & Sanded Butterfly Card Andrew wrote about in September. The butterflies are held onto the card with brads. I am always nervous mailing cards that have brads in them, since these little bumps can cause the cards or envelopes to become damaged in the post office’s machinery. But they seemed to make it just fine through the mail. To make the cards stand out a bit more and give it a little more of a fancy flair, we sprayed some shiny metallic mist on the gray and blue panels. We decided that gold spray looked better with the gray and silver looked better with the blue.
Inside is the cat photo and another of Andrew and me, held in place with little clear adhesive photo corners. When people received the card, they told me what a great picture was inside! I was usually disappointed to know that they were talking about the one of Andrew and me, and not the one of our kitties that we worked so hard on.
I had to make a card for a coworker’s birthday, and I decided I wanted to make something that was blue and gold. I really like those colors together; I think they match really well. I also like butterflies, so I wanted to combine those two themes together.
I was flipping through one of our special cardstock stacks and I saw that we had a sheet of blue cardstock with shiny silver polka-dots. I ran that through our paper embosser; I chose a floral Indian-style print, because I really like Indian designs. After that, it didn’t have quite enough edge to it. It was hard to see the embossed design because of the polka-dots. So I took some sandpaper and sanded over it, exposing the white core inside the paper, to help emphasize the embossed edges. This gave it a nice old-age look; it was kind of a secondary effect that I wasn’t intending, but I liked the rustic Indian style.
Then, I made a gold band, cut it in half, and used our corner puncher to make it curved around the edges. I wanted a butterfly, and I did the same thing with the butterfly: I took gold paper—a different style—and also embossed that with a different embossing pattern, kind of a swirly pattern. I also went over that very lightly with sandpaper. It tied it together with the blue paper it was going to sit on.
To affix the butterfly, and to keep with my gold theme, I took a gold star brad and fixed the butterfly on with it. Then, I had to mount this panel onto a base card, because right now, I had only the embossed panel, and you can’t really write on the back of an embossed sheet of paper. I went through our paper stacks and found a lightweight, faint yellow that had little fibers in it, which I liked. It paid homage to a regal Bollywood style with some western influences. It matched the gold band I used in the middle.
Andrew made this card for a coworker.
The front of the card has a panel with a large hole in it, behind which Andrew can slide or glue in a photo. The panel was embossed in our Sizzix Big Kick embossing machine. Andrew punched five butterflies out of some beautiful paper from India; he really loves using his butterfly punch. The butterflies are held on with brads.
As it was the last day at the company for Andrew’s coworker, Andrew decided it would be nice to print a collage of his coworkers’ faces to slide into the card.
After Andrew made me an expanding shutter card for Valentine’s Day, which he cut out by hand, we created a few shutter cards with my die-cutter as a sort of experiment. After that, I was waiting for the perfect opportunity to make a shutter card for somebody’s birthday. It happens that my cousin celebrated her birthday this past month, so I made her a card for her birthday.
You can view Andrew’s post, linked above, to see how such a card is made. It’s actually pretty straightforward. I had the die cutter cut out all of the pieces, then I used my bone folder to make the creases. I used the Old World Stack of paper to make this card, which I think has a subdued but colorful selection of paper.
I used a dab of glue in the center of a little butterfly on the right hand side, lifting its wings gently to give it a little dimension. However, as elegant as the design was, I felt that the card looked a little bare still. Reserving the center panel for our sentiments, I stuck on a few little flowers that I punched out with our daisy punch tool. After five or six flowers, I realized I would need many more flowers to keep it from looking bare, so I decided to add 32 flowers, since my cousin was turning 32. It’s fun to throw in little subtle references to the recipient’s age.
For the baby shower that Brandon blogged about a few posts ago, I also created a butterfly mobile to gift to the expectant mother. We saw this beautiful mobile on Pinterest and I wanted to re-create it.
So we set out to gather materials. We already had a great butterfly punch that we use quite often. We went to Jo-Ann for over an hour to find everything needed for the mobile. I got a metal ring that was about a foot in diameter, a white feathered boa to wrap around it, two types of paper (white iridescent cardstock, and white paper with gold and silver flakes) from which to punch out butterflies, and clear thread to hang the butterflies with.
I wanted a white halo on top, so I wrapped the feathered boa around the metal ring, and then tied the ends of the feathered boa together where they met. I then created a criss-cross of the clear thread across the halo from which to hang the butterflies. Please see the figure to the right. I tied string to each of the points as illustrated by the dots in the picture. The outer edges of the mobile had strings dropping down that were shorter than the inner-most string, which was longest, at about three feet in length.
I then punched out 60 butterflies from the iridescent paper, and 60 from the white paper with gold and silver flakes. I found that the paper with the gold and silver flakes tended to tear when I tried to punch butterflies out from it, but I found that by putting the iridescent cardstock on top, the butterfly punch was able to punch through both without any tears.
I then used glue dots to stick one iridescent butterfly and one gold-and-silver-speckled butterfly onto the string, and I put four of them on the string for the outermost, then five for the inner-most string. I also staggered them so that they wouldn’t overlap, and it looked like there was a large group of butterflies. What made this particularly unique was Brandon’s great idea to use clear thread, which made the halo and butterflies look like they were floating in mid-air, giving it a more magical touch.
We hung it as a centerpiece for the dining table at the baby shower, along with the animals on sticks and pinwheels. The guests liked the mobile a lot, and we gave it to the expectant mother as a gift.
After the success of the baby shower we decorated for last weekend, one of the party guests asked if we could do some decorating for her daughter’s birthday party. We unfortunately didn’t have as much time to devote to the birthday party decorations as we did the baby shower decorations, but at least we were able to make a cute banner.
This banner is not unlike the onesie baby shower banner we made. It’s essentially the same, except with flowers instead of onesies. It even uses the same font. We used construction paper because I bought a huge stack of it at a garage sale. The flowers are held onto a string with tiny clothespins.
We sure do use Andrew’s butterfly punch a lot. We used the butterfly between the words “HAPPY” and “BIRTHDAY” as a sort of space. At first, I got out the butterfly punch and thought I would glue little pink butterflies onto the edges a few flowers, but it wound up looking messy. I’m glad I was inspired to glue a red butterfly onto the space; otherwise, it would have been a blank flower, which would have been okay, but the butterfly is cute and matches the theme.
We saved the extra letters cut out from the flowers so that the mother of the birthday girl could make another sign, if she wanted to. It takes a little while to cut out all of the pieces, but it makes for a very cute design that’s pretty easy to make.
We like making these butterfly cards because they’re quick and easy, and people like them. They’re good for pretty much any occasion.
They’re very easy to make. They take only 5 minutes each. All you do is punch out a butterfly with a butterfly puncher, cut a strip of gold paper, and a strip of flower paper. You cut the strip of gold paper in half, use a corner rounder puncher to round the edges of the gold strip in the center, leaving a gap. Then you fasten the butterfly on with a brad.