Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Tutorial; Making Sponge Blocks for your Distress Inks

 Step by Step Instructions

A couple weeks ago I was on a blog (click HERE for Tracy's Treasures) and watched a video on her favorite crafty tools.  On that video one of her favorite things was her Tim Holtz Distress Inks, but it was her sponges that caught my attention.  She had each sponge on it's own wood block.  If you use these inks then you know how pricey the TH Applicators are and having one for each colour would be nice!  She used the Michaels $1.50 stamp blocks.  Well, I gave all mine away.  However I do have loads of SU stamps still mounted.  So here's what I did at very little cost. 


Here, I have my TH sponge applicators.  The issue with having only one.  I was destroying my sponges by changing them so much.

Step 1: Unmount your rubber stamps. Try to use a block around the same size as the sponge.

Step 2: You'll need an Industrial Staple Gun, Industrial Velcro and a hammer. 

Step 3: Trim the Velcro to fit your block and it has a sticky back. 

Step 4: Now that you have stuck Velcro on trim if you need too.

Step 5: Here's where the staple gun is needed.  Pop a staple in at the top and bottom.  If the staples don't go on the whole way (I'm not strong enough) use your craft hammer (I used my TH) to bang them down flat.  We just want the velcro to stay.

Step 6: Now, stick your sponge down.

Step 7: Next, I printed all the TH Distress inks out with a lable maker.

Step 8: Trim them and stick it on your sponge block.

Step 9:  Print all the colours out even if you don't have them yet.  These I don't have so now I know what to get.

Step 10: Now it's time to match lables to colours and get them onto the blocks.

Step 11: Once the labels are with their colours start adding them to the blocks. 

It's starting to come together.

Here I have all my Stampin Up blocks ready for sponges. 

If your blocks are used like mine be sure the inked, messy or sticky part is where your sponge will stick! 

Step 12: Next you'll need some packing tape and a square punch.  I inked the square with the colour.  I went heavy on one side and lighter on the other.  Doing dark to light on each square gives you an idea of the ink for future projects. 

Step 13: Tear off a strip of packing tape and stick on your inked up square.  Place it evenly on your sponge block and be sure to get out air and bubbles for a clean look.

Here are all my colours.  You can see where I went dark to light.

No more changing sponges.  You'll save money as they will last longer.

Step 14: STORAGE...You can store your sponge blocks upright so they are easy to see and grab.

 Thanks to Tracy for sharing her great idea and inspiring me to get organzied.  This took me about 3 hours to do.  Now as I collect more colours I will build these blocks as I go.

The cost was pretty low as I already had the staple gun, velcro and blocks.  I would say each sponge block cost me about $0.30.  That's a huge savings since the TH blocks run about $8.50 at Michaels and maybe $6+ at your LSS.

I hope you found this tutorial helpful. As I was collecting colours I started noticing what a pain it was to use the sponges and store them. Now they are neatly stored, easy to use and I'll go through less sponges.

Happy Leap Year
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Tuesday, February 28, 2012

11 Things...


I was tagged my bloggy BFF Kellie .  The goal here is to learn more about us and pass it along.  Here goes... 
There are five rules:


1. Post these rules.
2. Post a photo of yourself and 11 random things.
3. Answer the questions set for you in the original post.
4. Create 11 new questions and tag people to answer them.
5. Go to their blog/twitter and tell them you’ve tagged them.

{look no Jack ears}

11 Random Things about Me...
  1.  I never know what to share about myself...
  2. My husband and I have been together for over 17 years and he still gives me butterflies
  3. I am finding parenting 2 teens and one (teen) on the way an EPIC challenge
  4. I work REALLY hard at not being as shy as I really feel
  5. I am NOT a shopper and hate malls
  6. I really love to cook and bake for my kids
  7. I have a lip balm all over my house, in my JEEP and always in my purse
  8. I started skiing when I was 2 years old, my grands were ski instructors
  9. I'm pretty handy and have built 2 basements and reno'd my kitchen/ main floor.
  10. I deal with stress by not eating...that's not healthy
  11. I think my kids are pretty cool and they entertain me greatly

**KELLIE'S QUESTIONS TO ME**
1. Do you have a pet?
I have 2, a cat (Cheyenne, 16 yrs) and Golden Retriever (Chaos 1 1/2 yrs).
2. What is your natural hair colour?
I'm a brunette.
3. If you could have just one wish what would it be?
I would wish to be debt free.
4. Are you a girlie girl or a tomboy-ish girl?
I am more tomboy for sure with moments of being girlie.
5. Why do you blog?
I was so inspired by other blogs I wanted to share what I was learning.
6. Favourite song or band at the moment?
 Paul McCartney's new album and that Video Games song
7. Where were you born?
I was born on Vancouver Island, British Columbia
8. Favourite blog?
 I have been visiting Tim Holtz blog to learn.  I visit a lot of blogs but I am horrible at leaving comments. {SORRY}
9. What is something you look forward to every week?
Getting together with my crafty GF's and Thursday's when my husband gets home from travelling.
10. If you could live anywhere, where would you choose?
In Canada for sure, I am so Canadian and deeply proud to be.
11. Something embarrassing about you?
A lot of things but I blush easily.
{MY QUESTIONS TO YOU}
  1. ANY TRAVEL PLANS THIS YEAR?
  2. WHAT'S YOUR FAVORITE BOOK YOU'VE READ?
  3. WHAT DO YOU LOVE TO EAT?
  4. COFFEE OR TEA...WINE OR BEER?
  5. WHERE IN THE WORLD WOULD YOU LIKE TO VISIT AND WHY?
  6. YOUR FAVORITE BLOG TO VISIT?
  7. WHICH DO YOU PREFER, SNOWY MOUNTAINS OR SAND BEACHES?
  8. WHAT CRAFTY THING DO YOU WANT TO LEARN THIS YEAR?
  9. WHO INFLUENCES YOU AND WHY?
  10. MORNING PERSON OR NIGHT OWL?
  11. WHICH ERA SHOULD YOU HAVE BEEN BORN IN?
Who do we want to know more about? 

*** BE SURE TO POP IN AND LEAVE ME A COMMENT TO LET ME KNOW YOU'VE SHARED YOUR 11 THINGS SO WE CAN LEARN MORE ABOUT YOU.***
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Monday, February 27, 2012

Instagram Monday

My week in Instagram
It was a quiet week since I spent most of the week cleaning and crafting.  I did take a couple of pictures here and there. 





Chaos (my Golden) loves to play in the snow.  Today he's out playing in the backyard, sniffing, running and attacking his soccer ball.  It was a super cold morning but now that it's warmed up 25 degrees it's nice and warm to have a play! 
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Thursday, February 23, 2012

12 Tags of 2012- February

Finally I got my 1st tag done for 2012.  

 As you may recall I don't have a ton of Tim stuff, infact I had no stamps, folder or die required for this tag.  Here is my version of Tims first tag of 2012...plus a bonus tag.  I'll show you how I made this tag work with almost no goodies used in Tim's tag. 

I don't have the cupid die used.  I went to the $1 Store and found these jelly cupids.  Not what I wanted but I thought I would give it a shot.  I traced the jelly's onto a cereal box and because they are jelly they kinda do ok sticking.


I found these metal hearts at the same time and thought they would be good to use instead of the honeycomb.  It was Valentines day so the LSS was out of red honeycomb.  I used a page from the dictionary and tore off stripes.  I cut the hearts by hand using a cereal box, then used spray adhesive to apply the ruffled paper. 


Instead of the border die, I used scrap ribbon.  But really any boarder punch will do if you don't have the Vintage Lace die. 

My 2nd Variation

On both tags I stamped a background stamp, SU Tres Chic inked with Snow Cap.  I embossed both tags with Elegant Bouquet embossing folder and then sprayed with a pearl.  I kept the tags similar.  The ruffled heart wasn't as nice as the other one as I was learning on this heart.  But it turned out OK.

For this sentiment I wanted to use "Love Stuck" my SMS Crazy for You set.  I wanted to make mini banners.

Here are my 2 tags together.


Scrappy Moms Stamps challenge this week is TAGS.  So, be sure to pop in HERE and TAG along.



Are you going to craft along?  I know I am. 

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Monday, February 20, 2012

Instagram Monday


Another week on Instagram.  I take A LOT of photo's and always have.  It's hard to narrown down what I'll post. 

Here's my Instagram Week... starting with Valentines










Want to Instagram your week and share it, click HERE to go to Kellie's Blog.

Thanks for checking out my Instagram Week.   Happy Family Day:)
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