29 Jul 2017

Design Your Own Bokeh Backgrounds


If you enjoy using bokeh patterns as much as I do you'll love the tutorial that I have over on the Silhouette UK Blog today.

Surprisingly I couldn't find any bokeh designs in the design store, but it is easy to make your own if you have the Designer Edition of Silhouette Studio.  Using the Silhouette software, the tutorial shows you how to create your own digital bokeh backgrounds. They can be used for cardmaking and other papercrafting projects. 
The design only needs to be made once and then the overlay can be saved and used in combination with any colour or combined with other backgrounds, and used over, and over again.

You can use the pattern as a background, as a fill for digital elements or print out the patterns on your home printer to cut out later. They can be printed onto plain paper, textured cardstock, pearlescent card and even vellum. The printed vellum in the top right of this picture. I'll be using the paper version (top left) to make a quick card in a later post.

I love how these bokeh patterns turned out, they look even prettier in real life.

26 Jul 2017

Terrier Pin Cushion using Simply Crafty SVGs Dog Box Set

Hiya, Today I have a wacky 3D project for you using the fantastic Dog Box Set from Simply Crafty SVGs.

The file makes a fabulous lidded box with Chihuahua and Terrier variations. I fell in love with the terrier version, but thought it wouldn't be too difficult to make it look a bit more like my own pet, a feisty Lucas Terrier. Now comes the wacky part - with a few simple design changes I adapted the design to become a pin cushion and needle case with a small storage compartment for sewing accessories.

The file is designed to be cut from cardstock, but I made my box from felt-covered chipboard with some additional felt elements.  I've included details on the adaptations I made, but this is one of those projects that you can truly make your own.  I used my Silhouette Cameo® 3, but of course the SVG files can be used with other desktop die cutting machines (details here).

Materials Used:

Silhouette Chipboard (light-weight grey board)
Coloured Felt/Flannel 12" x 12" Squares in blue (1) & beige (2)
Black felt scraps or Flocked Heat Transfer Material
Heat N Bond Ultra Hold Iron-On Adhesive, or similar
12" x 10mm/0.75" Tartan Ribbon
Snap Fastener
Card Scraps
Toy Stuffing & Wadding
Beacon 3-in-1 Glue
Silhouette Cameo

Select and Cut the Pattern Pieces

Cut all pieces from the Box1 file, and the leg reinforcement pieces from the Box 2 file in Silhouette Chipboard. Cut selected pieces from the Terrier file (I cut the head twice, and one set of those fabulous eyebrows).

Covering the Pieces in Felt

Apply the iron-on adhesive to the back of a beige square of felt using a domestic iron following the manufacturers instructions. Draw around the board pieces shown on the adhesive side of the felt, cut them apart then trim and apply felt to the board pieces. Re trim the more intricate parts.

Ordinarily, I cut the felt on the Silhouette, but because only selected parts of these pieces need to be covered, it is quicker and easier to cut them with scissors using the Silhouette-cut board pieces as guides rather than edit all the pattern pieces in the software.

Strengthening the box

Design and add a leg at each corner to be partially hidden by the leg parts of the original box sides (all the parts are labelled in the PDF Instructions which accompany the file).  Adhere the legs once the box sides and re-enforcing pieces have been assembled. The box bottom needed to be trimmed before fitting. I just did this by eye with scissors.

Terrier Customisation

Cut and apply features from felt/heat transfer, adapting them if you wish.

I changed ear and eye shape, and added a mouth and card eye detail.

I made a 'neck' with a stack of board circles covered in beige felt which sat between the head and the body. The head and neck were adhered at a slight angle as that is how our terrier often stands.

The chest piece is an enlarged snout piece and the tail is an enlarged eyebrow!

The Pin Cushion

Make a sausage of stuffing wrapped in wadding and wrap a piece of blue felt around it. Secure along the length and at the ends with liquid adhesive. Cut a rectangle of board to fit the dog's back and cover in blue felt, securing with glue. (Optional) Trap some thin ribbon to form a handle between rectangle and 'sausage'.

Adhere the 'sausage' to the rectangle leaving it to dry under a heavy weight (I left mine in a cold heat press overnight).

The Needle Holder/Dog Coat

Add a shaped piece of blue felt folded over the side of the box (I used a bracket shaped square). Adhere it to the inside of the box only, leaving the outer part free. Add a smaller beige felt shape folded in half to serve as a needle holder. Adhere only on the folded edge. repeat on the other side.

Adhere ribbon to a narrow strip of felt, cut into two pieces, one longer than the other and attach a snap fastener to each end.

Adhere these straps to the blue squares so that one piece passes under the box so the fastener meets at one side.

The Storage Compartment

Line the compartment with a blue felt scrap, trimmed to fit.

... and that completes the terrier pin cushion.

Have you used your pets for crafty inspiration? I recommend it - it's a lot of fun!

Bye for now,
Janet, DT Member Simply Crafty SVGS

Blog: https://CraftingQuine.blogspot.co.uk
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/craftingquine

Simply Crafty SVG Files:
Dog Box Set

21 Jul 2017

Alcohol Ink and Vellum Butterfly Card - Faux Stained Glass Technique

Hiya,  I'm featuring a card using one of my favourite card-making techniques on the the Silhouette UK Blog today - faux stained glass!  The Silhouette cuts great frames to show off the pattern variations and rich colours of decorated vellum paper.  I've adapted the card design so that  light can pass through and display the inked vellum to best effect. I used self-adhesive cardstock to give a clean, smear-free finish.

To make the card I used the following:

Butterfly Card #124784 file download by StudioIlustrado

Butterfly Mother's Day Card #59805 for the little butterflies

Silhouette® Cameo 3

Pearlescent vellum from Create & Craft

Tim Holtz Alcohol inks & blending solution

Black medium-weight cardstock

Liquid craft glue

Black Silhouette Adhesive Cardstock

On the full post you'll find details on:
  • Preparing the vellum,
  • Adapting the card base,
  • Making an independent frame for the stained-glass,
  • Aligning the vellum insert, and
  • Finishing touches.

Oh, and don't forget to use the vellum scraps from around the butterfly to make smaller butterflies to use for other projects. Even the bits rescued from the bin!

I hope you'll try this out - the stained glass effect is beautiful in real life.

10 Jul 2017

Quick Cork Coasters

Hiya, over on the Silhouette UK Blog today I have a FAST gift tutorial. I've decorated blank cork coasters with smooth heat transfer vinyl. The Silhouette Heat Transfer material is easy to cut and fast to prepare.

You'll need:

Silhouette Smooth Heat Transfer Material

Blank Cork Coasters/Circles (95mm diameter, 6mm thick)

Tea Cup Pennant Files by Nic Squirrell #73419

Heat Press or Iron

In the post I show you how to prepare the design, and how to cut and apply the heat transfer material.

Hope you'll try this - I think they turned out great!

P.S. If you have any queries I won't be able to repsond right away as I'm holiday-ing on the beautiful Isle of Skye (this post was scheduled ahead). If you leave a message here I'll get back to you as soon as I can after my return!

3 Jul 2017

Fringed Flamingo Card with the Free File of the Week

Hiya! Today I'm bringing you a quick card using the FREE file of the week form the Silhouette Design Store. I did challenge myself to make something with the free file every week, but I'm ashamed to say that the last one was back in March. Shame on me!

This week's FREE file is a Fringed Flamingo from Simple Stories. It accompanies an offer of 25% off all Simple Stories designs in the Silhouette Design Store.

I made most of this card with Print & Cut, printing the flamingo layers in different shades of pink on white Silhouette Vellum.  The flamingo body and sentiment were a Print & Cut too.  The cut pieces are shown in the photo below together with a sheet of patterned paper and a square card blank.

The card was a quick make, but I decided not to use the line around the original print and to add a fringe at the base from vellum scraps with a scrap of paper from the patterned paper.

I'm not sure if want to add a little more to it. I'll think on it and let you know!

I've entered this card into the following challenges:
Make My Monday: #49 Summer Brights

1 Jul 2017

Make Custom Insets for Your Gift Boxes and Gift Cards

Hiya. Today on the Silhouette UK Blog I have Part 2 of the 'Decorate Your Phone Kit'. Last week, in Part 1,  I shared a tutorial on making small decal sheets from re-coloured Print & Cut designs. Today I have 3 mini tutorials, completing the gift box, showing how to;
  1. make a custom box insert,
  2. make a gift card or sheet holder, and
  3. scan the gift (to use in customising the box insert and making phone cover sheets).

Pop over to the blog if you think you'll find any of these mini-tutorials useful. They can easily be adapted for all sorts of presentation boxes and gifts.