Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Sizzix Storage

So today's post is on Framelit and Thinlit storage.
And trust me, it was born out of necessity.
I had Framelits that were released earlier in the year that were still in the molded plastic packaging, which is large.  I work in a small room, where storage is at a premium, so when I saw that Sizzix had introduced plastic envelopes I wanted to try them out to see if I could recoup some storage space.  

The envelopes come in a 3 pack.  They fit both Framelits, which come with rubber stamps and the "frames" to cut them out, as well as Thinlits which are only the wafer-thin metal pieces.  An easy way to remember the difference is that Thinlits cut a shape or word and Framelits always "frame" a stamped image.
I used my P-touch to add the name across the top.  My Brother P-touch is about 25 years old and it still works like a charm!
Once I had all the envelopes labeled, I went to Home Depot to get a few packages of Magnetic Vent Covers ($4.50 a package).  Each package 8 x 15" can be cut into pieces to fit the Sizzix envelopes.

NOTE: In Home Depot they can be found right next to the metal registers or vents.  I found them both on a lower shelf and hanging on a plastic 'clip strip' at eye level.  They are also sold at Lowe's.
The magnet sheets are thin which is perfect to use inside the Sizzix envelopes.  I used my roller cutter to cut the magnetic sheets, but a metal ruler and X-Acto knife would work also.  I cut 2" off one side (save this piece) leaving a piece 15 x 6".
NOTE: The roller cutter can cut at least two sheets at a time.
Turn the 15 x 6" piece and cut into three - 5 x 6" pieces.  With each package you can get NINE 5 x 6" pieces making it about 50 cents per envelope.  I don't think that's to bad!
For Framelits - the stamp is already on plastic.  I faced the stamp to the front with the label.
NOTE: the magnet sheets are white on one side and black on the other.  
Only the black side is magnetic.  

Then added the metal Framelits pieces to the magnet sheet and slipped it into the back.  Easy.
Tim's Framelits will always fit onto one sheet.  However, Thinlits do not come with the rubber stamps...just metal cut pieces and I found that many of the new Thinlits (that are being released soon) required more than one sheet.   For instance the new Holiday Words has two or three words that will not fit on the one sheet.  This is where the 15 x 2" piece of magnet sheet (the one we saved after cutting) comes into play.  Just cut to the size you need and slip it into the plastic cover.

Alphanumeric is one of the new sets that starts shipping in August.  I found it to be the hardest to control.  Once you open the package all the letters have to be removed from the backing.  If I moved them to the envelope it would be a nightmare to find the letters you need quickly.  Enter the magnet sheet - problem solved.
It took 2 magnet sheets to hold all the pieces but well worth the effort.  I can now easily find the letters I need.
Now if you are smart, maybe you saved the picture packaging and you can skip this step.  I did not.  So I created a document on my computer to print the images for the new envelope.  Drag and drop or right click until you have 4 pictures per page.  Then print and cut the images apart.  You can see I just pulled these images from Tim's blog post about the new product. 
Once cut apart, I used a small amount of adhesive to adhere the image to the front of the magnet sheet.
I currently store my envelopes in a turquoise bin that I already own.  These are made by See Jane Work, found at Office Depot. 
If you're looking for something that can stow them away, out of sight, I would suggest the linen covered box Sizzix makes for Bigz dies.  The box is super sturdy and the plastic envelopes fit right inside.
I hope this post gives you some ideas on storing your Framelits and Thinlits.  I know I am super happy I took the time to add mine to the envelopes.  I cut all the magnet sheets to size, then worked on them while I watched Project Runway.  That's a win-win situation in my book!

It just so happens that Linda Ledbetter's 
 happens to be Framelits! 
The challenge is open till Friday Aug. 29th 
so you still have plenty of time to join in on the fun 
(and maybe win a great prize).

now carry on,

Monday, August 18, 2014

Reminder to your Heart

Hi everyone!  I promised to create a project using one of the new Mini Distress Ink sets.  I chose set #10 - Iced Spruce, Squeezed Lemonade, Bundled Sage and Tattered Rose.  You know I had to pick the one with Iced Spruce right?
Lets get started:
Gather supplies - Four #8 manila tags, Dina's white Gesso, paintbrush and Tissue Tape (any pattern).
Lay the four tags out and tape them together (add tape to both sides).  Be sure to leave a 1/16" between the tags so they will fold up without buckling.
Use the paint brush to add Gesso over the tags and tape.  Once one side is dry, repeat on the back until all of the manila surface is covered.
Once finished, your tags should be able to fold up like this.
I chose Iced Spruce (of course) to create the background layer.   I used the Mini Iced Spruce ink pad to add Distress Ink directly on the surface of the tag.  Remember, the tags are coated in Gesso so the tag surface will not soak up the ink.
Next I made a puddle of Multi Medium on my craft mat, then used a paintbrush to brush the move ink around the tag.  I only put out enough MM to work two tags at a time.
Once I covered two tags, I used a wet wipe to get rid of the brush marks of the ink/MM mix until it looked like a smooth stucco surface.  So you might ask why not just use Distress Ink over the Gesso and rub it with a Blending Tool?  The answer is that Distress Ink over Gesso will never really dry because of the slick coating the Gesso gives.  When adding the MM to the wet Distress Ink, the ink color becomes part of the MM - you can manipulate it when it wet but once dry, it becomes permanent over the surface.
Once everything was dry, I used Archival Ink (which is permanent ink) - Watering Can and the large Distress Damask Stamp to create a pattern.  Love that grey Watering Can color over the Iced Spruce.
I took a piece of dyed cheesecloth and ripped it in a long strip, then stitched it to the right of the fold.
I used Remnant Rubs (Botanical) in combination with words cut from a book to add a message to the inside of the book.   After I added the words, I used my finger tip to cover the message with a bit of MM to seal it.  Once dry, I used a Walnut Stain Distress Marker to add a bit of color around the word "And", then smeared it with more MM to seal the color in.
I wanted to use some splatter using the Distress Marker Spritzer but because I have used MM to seal the booklet, using a Distress Marker is out of the question since it will not dry over the slick surface.  The solution...a Sharpie marker.  The thicker marker slips easily into the collar of the Spritzer tool and therefore can take the place of a Distress Marker in this situation since Sharpies have permanent ink.  I decided to practice on a sheet of paper before spritzing over my booklet since the ink/pen is different than what I am used to.  Always a good idea to practice first.
The Sharpie gave me a super fine spray.  Harder to see, the further away you are, but still a nice effect.
I wanted to use Crinkle Ribbon to add ties for each tag - 10" per tag x 4 tags = 40" of Crinkle Ribbon to be colored.  I used three of the colors from the set - Iced Spruce, Tattered Rose, and Squeezed Lemonade.  The ribbon came out beautifully with a muted, vintage tone.  I know I will be using that combination again.

A few pieces of metal are in order to complete this project. 
I chose a small Word Key that had the word DREAM on it.  I colored the key with Weathered Wood Distress Paint and then Mushroom Alcohol ink to create the aged appearance.  The color helps "marry" the metal piece to the paper booklet.

I also used a Swivel clasp, Monocle, and Heart Charm to create a message for the cover of the booklet. 
A ripped piece of Wallflower Vellum under the cheescloth on the cover adds another layer.
Note: you might notice that I changed the Heart Charm - I decided I didn't want to repeat the word heart, so I changed to "beyond measure".

I love how the ribbon turned out.  I was able to create this look by pouncing the Distress Ink colors next to each other on the craft mat in this order: iced spruce, tattered rose, squeezed lemonade, iced spruce.  I folded the 40" piece, 4 times (you could also pre-cut the 10" pieces), then laid the ribbon into the Distress Ink soaking up the colors and then drying.

tag one and two
tag three and four
I really like how the simple booklet turned out.  Very muted but quite lovely.  I also think the cheesecloth added the much needed dimension.  I don't have very much cheesecloth that is dyed this dark so I might have to have another dying session soon.

And on to what you have all been waiting for - 
the winners of the Distress Ink Minis!
If your name is on this list, please email your shipping information to
Thanks to everyone for stopping by and commenting!

Set #10
Leslie McLaughlin
Love these!! I really didn't think I would need them but they are wonderful!

Set #11
Karen Newhouse
Itty-bitty is so cute. I love them all. If I have to choose #11 would my choice.

Set #12
Julie Steed
Love those stenciled tags! The minis are so perfect for that technique, aren't they? I think I'd have to go with #12 as my fave.

Products used in today's tutorial.