Welcome to the Imagine/Precious Remembrance Blog Hop!

In The Studio

It’s so much fun when Imagine teams up with other companies–sometimes it’s brands I know and other times it’s brands new to me, like today and the Precious Remembrance Shop!

They were kind enough to send each of the Imagine AIRs the same two stamp sets, so get ready to see how the same sets can be used in different ways over the next two days!

For today’s project I upcycled a drink container–carrier? holder? pack? I’m really not sure what you call the box they came in–into a fun gift box with built-in handle. Thanks to the School Days stamp set, it’s perfect for end of year gifts to teachers or congratulatory gifts to your grads.

Direct link for the feed readers: https://youtu.be/P4eIFgLt_mE

Of course, swap out a different stamp set and you’ll be good to go with any other theme or occasion you can dream up!

Imagine Supplies:

StazOn Opaque – Cotton White
Memento Luxe – Nautical Blue, Dandelion, Love Letter, Olive Grove
Memento Marker – Rich Cocoa, Rhubarb Stalk
Tear It! Tape

Other Supplies:

Empty drink carrier
Cardstock – White, Blue, Red, Yellow, Green
Fiskars – Paper trimmer, Scissors
Precious Remembrance Shop – Totally, School Days stamp sets
Acrylic Blocks
Helmar – Zap Dots

Since this is a blog hop, you know there’s gonna be a giveaway at the end, right? Here’s what you need to know to have a chance to win:

Giveaway Details:

– Hop Along and leave us some comments on each blog. 
– Show us some love!:) Like & Follow both companies on Facebook & Instagram
– Have fun & Good luck!

Precious Remembrance Shop: Facebook , Instagram
Imagine Crafts: Facebook , Instagram

1 Winner : School Days & Totally stamp sets (Precious Remembrance Shop)
1 Winner : $30 Gift Certificate from Imagine Crafts

Today’s Links:

Precious Remembrance Shop Blog
Lisa Elton
Kelly Lunceford
Greta Hes
Helen Gullett
Rosemary Dennis
Steph Ackerman
Melissa Andrew
Nadine Carlier
Martha Lucia Gomez
Roni Johnson
Jowilna Nolte
Kyriakos Pachadiroglou
Iris Rodriquez
Elina Stromberg
Kassy Tousignant
Jennifer Vanderbeek <– You Are Here
Imagine Blog

Imagine That: November Projects

In The Studio

For all my US-based readers, I hope you had a lovely Thanksgiving. Non-US readers? I hope you had a happy Thursday. We’ve gotten into such a groove with the Thanksgiving prep over the years that it’s become quite relaxing to host my family for dinner each year and I really do think it was our best turkey yet (for more on how we do our turkey, check out this vintage post all the way from 2010! Todd’s Turkey).

I have a lot to be thankful for this year with the new job, new friends being made here in Thomasville, and I recently got the all-clear on a health issue that’s been hanging over my head for the last two months (more on that another time, perhaps). Todd and I celebrated 10 years together at the beginning of the month, too, and my heart couldn’t be more full of love. I’m also grateful for the opportunity to create projects for Imagine/Tsukineko and share them with not just my own readers but theirs as well!

Another thing I’m not only grateful for but excited to get to do is that I’m going to Creativation in January! I’ve wanted to go to this trade show for as long as I’ve known it existed (which has been a good long while considering how long I’ve been knocking around the craft world in one way or another) and this fall I just decided I was going to make it happen. And, yes, I’ll be hanging out quite a bit at the Imagine booth, so if you’ll be there please stop by and say hello! Until then I’m counting the days and happily removing links from my paper chain!

And now here we are in Christmas build-up with the end of the year hurtling towards us. Last year we had a very quiet Christmas just the three of us (Todd, Duncan, and I) with minimal fuss. We barely even did presents, as well, concentrating on stockings instead, and it was glorious. Of course, if you’re in the mood to give a simple gift to friends, teachers, coworkers, etc., consumables are the way to go, and a little bit of pretty packaging goes a long way to make a simple gift seem like so much more.

Warmest wishes to you all and a Happy Holiday season!

12 Days of Blogmas: Random Acts of Kindness

Just for Fun

One of my favorite parts about the holiday season is not the presents, it’s the general cheeriness and goodwill the season inspires in many. That idea that, yes, we really can be a little nicer to one another when there are twinkling lights and sprigs of holly around. That’s the part of Christmas I would hate to lose.


Today’s Blogmas topic is RAKs, or Random Acts of Kindness, and opportunities abound this time of year.

The other night at dinner, a friend was talking about a local fundraiser that was asking for money, not any sort of physical donations, and she was a little apprehensive about that. After all, how do we know how much of those donations actually make it to those in need instead of going to administrative costs? On the other hand, larger organizations have a lot of buying power and can usually make arrangements with suppliers to get the most from those donations (not to mention donated goods may not fit all needs).

One way to feel a little better about giving money to a charity, if that’s your preferred method, is to check them out! Non-profits, in exchange for the benefits that status gets them, are required to make certain records public. You can request these records directly from the charity, or use IRS form 4506-A to request them. Of course, if you don’t want to wade through their tax forms, you can check out certain watchdog sites that will do the analysis for you. GiveWell and Charity Navigator are two companies that evaluate charities for their overall impact. There are undoubtedly more.

But what if money just isn’t what you have to give? A lot of people are on tight budgets and it’s easier to give time or something small. That’s why I want to share a couple of opportunities for giving that you may not know about but that can have a big impact.

I read and enjoyed MODG for quite a while, then the posts stopped showing up in my feed and her blog got lost in the shuffle of what shows up in my dash. Recently, though, I was reminded of her WANA program. WANA stands for We Are Not Assholes and is a way for readers to help readers. In it’s 4th year, you can find this year’s post here (http://modgblog.com/2015/12/02/5417/) and if you see a need that you can fill, you’ve just done something to make the end of the year a little brighter for another person. I know some requests were for simple things, like diapers; something you can add to your next shopping trip or maybe your baby just grew out of a size and you have a whole package just lying around.

It’s all about finding a need your are best suited to fill.

Another blog-prompted opportunity that truly is a small thing but can mean the world to the people on the other end is Operation Christmas Cheer, hosted by The Whatever Mom. On the facebook page for OCC there’s a pin post with names and addresses of kids who are seriously ill. All she asks is that you send them a card to make being sick over the holidays a little bit easier to bear. Right now there are 4 names and it’s easily one of the simplest outreaches that I can think of.

Spending the holidays in the hospital is no fun, both for the sick kid and for their family. I remember visiting my baby sister (who passed shortly after her first and only Christmas) in the hospital this time of year, back when I was 5 years old. Cards wouldn’t have healed her, but they would have made us all smile a bit. So, yeah, this one is special to me and I was happy to find out about it in time to participate. You can also contact your local hospital to find out if there are any kids in their pediatric wards who could use some extra cheer if you want to do something a little close to home.

Spread the cheer and love this time of year, friends. And maybe make it a resolution for next year to keep it up for the other 11 months of the year, too?


The 12 Days of Blogmas is a link-up hosted by The Coastie Couple and The Petite Mrs. Check out either of their blogs to see what everyone else has to say on today’s topic!

Helmar Share: Veterans Day Shadowbox

In The Studio

I’ve got my second project up over at the Helmar blog today getting creative with another one of their fabulous adhesives. This time around I’m highlighting ZapDots: 3D Double-Sided Adhesives that come in different sizes as well as in black, white, and clear. I took one look at the black ZapDots and knew they’d be just perfect for creating shadowboxes!

Some behind-the-scenes shots of the shadowbox process.

Some behind-the-scenes shots of the shadowbox process.

This shadowbox is in honor of my friend, Lyssa’s, military service. With Veterans Day/Remembrance Day just next week, it’s a quick project you can put together to honor a current or former service member. Click over to see how it came together: Shadow Box of Service

Two Birds, One Stone Card Box

Wedding Planning

We’re not expecting many gifts brought to our wedding, but I figure cards might be a bit more common so wanted to include something to hold them in and just set it on the same table as our guest “book” set-up and call it a day. From what I can tell, it’s fairly common to include a picture of the couple (another use for that engagement session) on the table with the guest book–and that’s when I worried said table might become a bit cluttered.

Since our guest book is actually a cork cage, I thought a card cage would be a bit much even if they are one of the prettiest options out there. The mailbox idea is cute, but it’s tough not to look at them and see the montage from UP! and that leads to instant waterworks. A suitcase wasn’t right and while the cardbox monsters are absolutely adorable, it was a little more levity than I had in mind.

But something needed to be decided, so I picked up one of those generic patterned paper boxes at the craft store with the intent to paint or otherwise cover it.

I’d used one of these at a shower I threw a few years back and just inserted a skewer to keep the lid propped up. It was functional if nothing else.

However, this was right around the time I was making the mini-books for our centerpieces so I started looking at the box from a different angle and decided if I could fashion a way to keep it open without losing the cards inside when the box was moved, why not do that instead? And if it’s standing up like a book (or a picture frame, ahem), why not put our engagement picture there instead of on it’s own?

‘Why not’ indeed!

I even had some of the envelope liner/mini-book cover paper leftover, enough to cover most of the “cover” of the card-box book and create a mat for our photo on the front.

I love it when a plan comes together.

First things first, I had the gold paint out again and decided to go ahead and paint the narrow sides of the box/book. It probably would have been best to prime it with a layer of gesso, first, so that it wouldn’t take four coats of the metallic gold paint, but it eventually got where the pattern wasn’t showing through so no harm, no foul.

Not that I'd consider trying to color the entire side of the box, but, hey, for edges it works!

Not that I’d consider trying to color the entire side of the box, but, hey, for edges it works!

For the edges where paper coverage was less likely, instead of getting the paint back out I opted to use my metallic sharpies and they worked amazingly well covering up the patter on the edges and dried much quicker, too! I liked the ease of the marker so much that when it came time to create the shim to hold the box open/create a base for the box, I colored over the paper with the bronze marker, too, and it worked wonderfully.

And it was around this time I realized I'd fit the shim to the wrong end of the box--oops! Good thing nothing was permanently adhered, yet.

And it was around this time I realized I’d fit the shim to the wrong end of the box–oops! Good thing nothing was glued down, yet.

By adding a couple of metal washers to the shim, the flap of the box will serve the same purpose: keeping the lid (that’s now the front of the book) in place! In this case enough that I don’t have to permanently adhere the shim to the inside of the box so we can use it to store the cards or other memorabilia after the wedding.

Rather than cut tiny little strips to line the inside edges of the box/book, I used ribbon to cover those areas, mostly it just needs to blend in more than anything, so the darker color of the ribbon works better for that than the patterned paper would have anyway!


Then it was just a matter of cutting the paper to size and adhering it to the box, then using 1″ strips to create a mat around the edge of the cover before attaching our photo. Preferring the look of finished edges, though, I decided to take a bit more ribbon and frame the photo and then dressed it up with some self-adhesive pearls.


The final touch was to mat a little “cards” sign on a scrap of the patterned paper then create little legs for it to stand on at the top of the book. I colored the flat portion of the legs to match the gold paint it’d be sitting on, but left the other half white so it would blend in with the paper. Minor details, sure, but it’d be far more noticeable if I’d left them out.

(Okay, probably only noticeable to me, but one less distraction for the bride is never a bad thing, right?)