Traveling Centerpieces

I was put in charge of the centerpieces for my sister’s June wedding. She wanted everything super simple, so I designed a two-sided card, made from photos of her travels around the world.

For each table, she selected two photos from her trip to that location.

I took each one, made it into a 5×7, pulled it into Microsoft Word and added the location and the year she visited and then printed them out.

Together, we cut a sheet of black cardstock and then adhered a photo to each side.

Some were horizontal and some where vertical … we didn’t care which was which as long as both photos on that table went in the same direction.

Once complete, we tucked each one into a strong photo clip and placed it in the center of the table.

We surrounded each one with blue lights, keeping the centerpieces elegant, but simplistic.

This is one a guest took of their table, with the coordinating placecard.

There is only one continent my sister has not visited …

She is going here, along with her new husband, in December for their honeymoon. I “borrowed” these photos off of some online travel sites and we put them in the trunk that held the card box, to show the guests what their generous gifts were going to pay for …

My sister and her husband loved the centerpieces, as did the guests. She told me later that a few took them home as souvenirs from the big day.

Just goes to show you, art doesn’t have to be time consuming to be beautiful!

Wedding: Pen Jar

My sister had a theme wedding. As a world traveler (she’s been to all but one continent and all of the states), she wanted to bring her passion to travel to her wedding.

We made place cards using map paper to help people find where in the world they will be sitting. Each table was a different place she has visited … (more on the centerpieces to come).

In leu of a guest book, she bought a map and pens for guests to sign. Naturally I couldn’t let the pens just “hang out” on the table, so I made her a coordinating little jar to hold them in.

The label was a little large for the jar, so it had a few wrinkles, but it turned out really cute, don’t you think? Here’s how I did it:

My secret weapon is Elizabeth Craft Designs Clear Double Sided Adhesive. If you’ve followed me before, you know how much I love this stuff. It sticks to anything, is crystal clear and comes in all sorts of sizes. I applied it to the back of the map paper (Authentique) and then ran it through my Big Shot with a Tim Holtz label die. This way, adhesive wouldn’t show from one side of the jar to the other.

I then added a black stamp die cut, also from Tim Holtz/Sizzix, to each label. I topped it off with a sticker from Little B.

And, on the other side …

I finished it off with a bit of ribbon from American Crafts and some travel charms from Art C.

I sure hope she enjoys this journey!

Honeymoon Fund Jar

My sister is getting married this weekend. The bartenders’ gratuity is already figured into the cost of the reception, so she thought it would be fun to collect donations to her honeymoon trip (in Australia!) at the bar. So I made her this jar … I was, of course, finishing it at the last minute, so I just took quick pics with my phone, but it was a fun project filled with tecniques and I wanted to share them with you …

I started with a Gordon Food Services’ pickle jar … I threw out the lid, cleaned the jar and got ready to etch the glass.

I wanted the jar to last beyond the reception. Since my sister is always traveling, I thought it would be nice for her to be able to remove the wedding stuff and keep it as a change jar for whatever trip she is planning in the future. So, I decided to etch a monogrammed heart on the front.

I cut out both a heart and a monogrammed S from etchall® etchmask using my Cricut. etchmask is a sticky vinyl … personally, I find it works much better for etching than a traditional vinyl since it is thicker, sticks better and doesn’t stretch as easily as vinyl does.

My sister likes things simple, so after I applied both the heart and the monogram, I trimmed off the fancy swirlies on the letter with a craft knife.

After making sure all of the edges were tight, I added my leftover pieces of etchmask to the edges of the design to make sure I didn’t etch anything I didn’t mean to.

Then, I applied a thick, even layer of etchall® etching crème to the design and let it sit for 15 minutes. I scraped the crème off and put it back in the bottle (it’s reusable) and then washed the jar with soap and water, removed the stencil and washed it again.

The metal tags are from Art C. My husband used sandpaper to remove the sharp edges and then stamped the words Honeymoon Fund into one of them (they are a pretty thick steel and I wasn’t hammering hard enough). I then used a fine-pointed Sharpie to make the letters dark and prominent.

Since the wedding colors are University of Michigan blue and gold, I used the chipped sapphire Distress Crayon to color the heart and the word love. I used my finger to smooth out the color on the heart … I love the streaking effect it gave.

I used a sticker and label set from Tim Holtz to add their wedding date. I tied gold ribbon to the top of the jar and used jump rings to adhere each of the tags.

Since the banquet hall is pretty dark, I figured the tags can sort of layer over each other and the etching on the jar during the reception and then she can remove the tags and ribbon and just have the jar with her new last initial monogrammed for later.

The entire project, because I already had most of the supplies on hand, was® inexpensive. The only thing I purchased were the tags, which were on sale at JoAnn Fabric and Crafts for $2.39 each — and they come three to a pack, so I have quite a few left for additional projects. Oh, and I figured it was bad luck to give a tip jar without any money in it, so I threw in a few $1 bills to get them started.

A Fox in a Pot

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Karen Burniston came out with a great die for Elizabeth Craft Designs … The Flower Pot Pop Stand comes with 12 dies and costs only $21.95 … a great value, in my opinion.

The package includes the dies to make this adorable flower pot, a piece that attaches it to a card base, and a variety of flowers, leaves and a butterfly. The flower pot folds flat and can be placed in a card or stand on its own.

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This one was made using only the dies in the package … (paper is from Ken Oliver; Glitter Dots are from ECD)

christmas_fox_candy_spiegel3but then I wanted to have a bit more fun, so I put Dutch the Fox (a die from Elizabeth Craft Designs) in the pot and added some of the holiday props to him. I mean, who doesn’t love a fox in a Santa hat with wire rimmed glasses!?

I attached the fox pot to a card.

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Here’s the front … (the paper is from Authentique and the stamps are also from Karen Burniston and Elizabeth Craft Designs.)

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Here’s how it would look if you opened it the way a card is traditionally opened. You can see I had a lot more space to add stuff, but I stuck to just the fox and a few pieces of holly (also an ECD die).

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And, amazingly, this is the card folded flat for mailing. You just open it and

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here he is! I love it!

Here’s a great video that shows you how easy it is to make

And, once you make the pot, you can add anything you want to it! Amazing!

Let It Snow, Let It Snow Banner

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Since things were so busy before the holidays and I had so many plans for the new year, I decided to make my holiday banner a winter banner, so I could leave it up on my tree all season. Of course, I still have the holiday stuff up, so this photo shows the banner with all of it’s holiday attire, but I assure you, the ornaments and Christmas cards will soon be packed away…

snow_banner_Candy_Spiegel3I started with a 6×6 paper pad from Michael’s and cut out tags using dies from Elizabeth Craft Designs to make the banner. I added a few cut outs from the paper pad, as well.

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Then, I embellished with silver glitter paper using dies from Impression Obsession and a deer punch. I used the Sizzix Precision Base Plate to get the thin metal dies to cut through the glitter paper.

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Then I added ribbon and buttons and strung it up with a bit of twine … since the tree is in my hallway where the lighting is poor, the photos on the tree never look great, but you get the idea!

Seasoning the Holidays

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Spice up the holidays a bit by turning vintage, clear, glass salt and pepper shakers into holiday decor. These little jars are perfect for displaying holiday photos or cards. Or, make a bunch and use them as place cards at the table. Here’s how I made them …

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First, punch out a circle or oval shape using etchmask. Stick the etchmask to the jar, smooth out all the bubbles and make sure the edges are stuck down tight.

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Place the shaker in a plastic container and fill the container with water to the point you want the glass etched. Remove the shaker and mark the water on the outside of the container. (This is how you know how much etchall dip ‘n etch liquid to use).

Dump the water and dry everything off, then pour the etchall dip ‘n etch liquid in the container to the mark you made. Now place the shaker in the container again. NOTE: It will float, so be ready with something heavy to place on top or place some pennies in the shaker, like I did here. Wait 15 minutes.

Remove the shaker, wash it off and remove the etchmask. Pour the etchall dip ‘n etch back into the bottle (it is reusable) and wash our your container to use next time.

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I love the soft etched glass … the trees really pop in the area that was covered by the etchmask. Although the photo does not show it well, it reminds me of looking into a diorama and you feel like the inside is much bigger than it really is.

Back to the tutorial … adhere the tree to the bottom of the shaker (I used silicone). Add faux snow to cover the base of the tree.

I also went around the unetched areas with little dots of Liquid Pearls.

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Trim a cork down to fit inside the lid of the shaker and adhere it. (I used Art Glitter Designer Dries Clear adhesive).

I coated the small shakers with glitter and the larger ones with Indigo Blue Mega Flake.

etchall_etched_glass_photo_Candy_Spiegel4Once dry, carefully insert a memo pin from Tim Holtz into the center hole.

Add a bit of twine or ribbon and you are ready to go! I really wish you could see these in person … nearly everyone who came by my booth at a recent craft show commented on these. They really are spectacular because of the etching!

etchall_etched_glass_photo_Candy_Spiegel5If you are ready to try your own, etchall is ready to help … use the code CANDYS and you will get 10% off your entire order! Click here and get etching today!

NOTE: I received compensation for this post.

Holiday Candy Jar

xmas jar by candy spiegel8I know it’s 85 degrees outside, but I was in a bit of a holiday mood and etchall was calling my name … I recently accepted a position as an elite etchall ambassador so you will see plenty more etchall projects to come ….

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I love to reuse food containers — especially jars. This one was previously filled with artichoke hearts.

xmas jar by candy spiegel2I used a die from Elizabeth Craft Designs to cut vinyl (this is from Cricut) to create the design. However, since I wanted the trees and landscape to be snowy and etched, I used the leftover part of the vinyl, rather than the part the die actually cut out. (I hope that makes sense) I adhered it to the jar and made sure all of the edges were firmly adhered.

xmas jar by candy spiegel3Then, I added a Peel-Off Sticker, from Elizabeth Craft Designs. Carefully use the squeegee from etchall (in photo below) to make sure everything is secure and there are no air bubbles.

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Next, I applied a thick layer of etchall. I pour some into a plastic container and apply it with the squeegee from etchall. A paintbrush just does not seem to get it on thick enough.

Once it is all on, let it sit for 15 minutes.

Then, use the squeegee to scrape it off and put it back into the container (it is reusable!). I then take a paper towel and wipe off as much as I can … this is an acid and it can “etch” your sink if you are not careful. Next, take the jar to sink and run the water and wash off the remaining etchall and remove the stickers and stencils. I then quickly wash the jar with dish soap. It is that easy!

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I did the lid while waiting for the etchall to work. First I cut out a circle from patterned paper and used my Xyron machine to adhere it to the lid. Then, I drilled a hole in the lid for the screw and attached the knob (from Hobby Lobby).

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Once the jar was completely dry, I added Glittered Peel-Off Stickers from Elizabeth Craft Designs. I love these deer and I scattered them around the etched landscape. If you carefully wash the jar, they will remain adhered.

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Then I added a ribbon from Stampin’ Up and some candy and the jar is complete.

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It took less than an hour and used mostly leftover products, so it was practically free! I think it will make a beautiful little gift. What do you think?

(NOTE: I received product from etchall in exchange for this post).