Christmas [Cards] in July!

In The Studio

We all have that friend, you know the one, who starts posting __ weeks ’til Christmas posts on their Facebook wall starting in, oh, February? Or maybe you are that friend? Either way, for those of us not preternaturally tuned to the Christmas countdown, such posts strike a frisson of fear down deep in our bones.

Or maybe just me.

But this year, I’m ready. I’m ready because last year I ordered both the regular Simon Says Stamp monthly card kit AND the additional, deluxe, Simon Says Stamp kit.

And did absolutely nothing with them.

Okay, that’s not 100% true, I opened them up and oohed and aahed over the cute stamps and the pretty papers. That counts, right?

But I didn’t make the cards.

And not only did I not make the cards, I ended up going to the store at the last minute and purchasing assorted pre-printed cards to send out to our nearest and dearest.

Crafter fail.

This year, though, I get to redeem myself because, hey, there will always be another Christmas, and so now those kits have been dragged out and put to good use.

With the addition of some card bases (purchased in a multi-pack from Tuesday Morning), a few spools and/or bottles of adhesive, and a couple additional ink pads, the cards came together over a couple of weekends.

To see how the different cards came together (there are only a handful of the 33! that are actual duplicates), watch the video of me putting them together:

It’s at ludicrous speed, but still helpful. (I had to do something to squeeze 6 hours of footage–and that didn’t include all the coloring–into a theatrical release!)

Thinking Cool Thoughts

In The Studio

And I’m not talking about when our downstairs a/c died this weekend…

Since moving into the Dollhouse I’ve had an image in my head of how it needs to look come Chirstmas-time. That image includes a lot of hand-crafted touches, naturally, but what it doesn’t account for is the small window of time to work on everything. Each year I’ve purchased supplies for at least one project only to stash them until the next fall rolls around. And it just snowballs from there (pun unintended, but we’ll go with it).

Not this year.


To catch up on some of my Christmas crafts I’ve decided to take the Christmas in July cliche and use that as my excuse to get a jump on those rollover projects in the hopes that I will be ready and rarin’ to go and decorate once the Thanksgiving dishes are back in the china cabinet.

(Of course, I’d also planned to start on this over the holiday weekend but, well, didn’t. So this might stretch into August at this point.)

I have three main projects I want to accomplish:

  1. Cone trees for dining room “runner” display
  2. Antiqued Christmas village for hall console table
  3. Christmas cards
It's a good start, but needs friends...

It’s a good start, but needs friends…

The cone trees are pretty simple, really. I already have the papier mache cones in different sizes that will flank the flocked tree I decorated last year. I’m going to use the white glue + shaving cream “snow” technique as seen on Learn With Mrs.B’s How to Build a Snowman Video:

Cute and simple. I’m so there.

Next on the list are some papier mache houses we picked up at Hobby Lobby last year that I want to turn into my own holiday village. I was inspired by a set of verdigris, antique, house-looking lanterns we saw in a store at Disney Springs after our cruise last November.

Aren't they just absolutely charming?!

Aren’t they just absolutely charming?!

They weren’t for sale, of course, just display, but I took pictures to maybe create my own. After buying the blank houses I then found the same lanterns in the Acorn Online catalog under Architectural Lanterns. They’re not ridiculously priced or anything, but by now I’ve committed to crafting my own with some faux finishing techniques, etc. Acetate will work well for the windows and I can still add battery-operated tea lights inside for a pretty glow.

A few cards from Christmas 2015 (from the Winter Whimsy card kit)

A few cards from Christmas 2015 (from the Winter Whimsy card kit)

Finally, I’d like to get a head start on my Christmas cards. We don’t usually do photo-cards but if we wanted to, now would be a really good time to decide. And even if not, I’d like to have more time to craft them. Last year I had a great boost because I put together two card kits for The Crafty Branch and I had to make the samples for the kits anyway. We still have those kits in inventory (more on that in a moment) but I don’t want to do the exact same cards as last year, you know?

This is actually one project I have started on, drawing out some images and typesetting some sentiments for a digital stamp kit to complement the card kits at The Crafty Branch. They’re not quite ready to go, yet, but I hope to have the first set in the store by the end of this weekend.

And speaking of the store, this is a good time to mention that we’re having a big Christmas in July sale over at The Crafty Branch…


So, you know, head on over and pick up some of our kits. You’ll be getting a head start on your own holiday to-do list and supporting a small business, too!

As of today, thinking about Christmas and cooler weather hasn’t had any sort of effect on the summer swelter going on, but it’s at least comforting to know I won’t be starting the holiday season behind!