My 4 year old daughter is currently obsessed with Elsa, one of the sisters in Disney’s latest movie, Frozen. Unfortunately, the dresses are sold out until March. That’s a long time in a little girl’s world so I thought I’d make her cape to play with until the dresses are back in stock. I found this gorgeous sheer material (I think it’s organza) with sparkly silver detailing at Joann’s.
I took the fabric to my Mom’s house and we set out to make this cape. And by making it together, I mean, I told her what I wanted and she made it. The end result looked great but was far from ideal. It turned out looking more like a super hero cape than an Elsa cape. I also had big concerns about the safety of the cape. I didn’t want the fastener to hang at her neck because I was using a ribbon tie instead of velcro closures. The cape was designed to lay over her shoulder with the tie around her chest, which would have worked great if she just, you know, stood still. But it turns out little girls like to run around so they can see it flowing behind them and sure enough the tie would eventually end up around her neck. Not good. So it was back to the drawing board.
Maybe attaching elastic rings at both ends so she could slip her arms through it and sort of “wear it” would solve the problem? No need for ties and the cape would drape much more like Elsa’s, starting near the top of her back. Then crazy thoughts started flooding in. Wouldn’t it be great to add sheer sleeves to this? What top would she wear with this? A tank top? And what about the skirt? Make I can make a skirt too. And before I knew it, this “make a cape” project turned into a full blow “make the entire ensemble” project. I’ve never sewn a garment in my life but I wasn’t going to let that deter me. That’s not true. I made a dress once in my high school home economics class. (Do they even offer that in high school nowadays? Man, I’m dating myself here.)
I made a sloppy mockup out of muslin, pinned all the pieces on Madeline to make sure it fit and sent a photo of it to my mom. She called me and said (in Chinese), “The back looks great. The front….needs work.” I asked her if she could teach me how to fix it, or rather, make it properly and she replied as she always does with my sewing requests, “Yes.” I thought back on past projects we’ve undertaken. They all started with the best of intentions – me wanting to learn from my mom – but somewhere along the way I would get impatient or scared I would mess up and she always ended up taking over and finishing the project for me.
I don’t want this project to end up like the others. I want to see this through to the end. I want to do everything from beginning to end. I want to learn this trade from my mom. I want to learn as much as I can from her.
Armed with the muslin pieces and drove to Downtown LA to shop for fabric. It took me two hours to make all fabric selections, 5 in all just for the Elsa dress. (I also got material to make an Anna dress for Audrey. )
The following day I got a crash course in sewing. My mom taught me how to turn the muslin mockup into a proper pattern, she taught me how to cut fabric properly (I was handling it the way I would cut paper and my cuts were jaggy) and she taught me how to sew gathers. Cutting fabric is hard. I have to unlearn my paper cutting habits. Sewing straight lines? Even harder. I lost count how many times I had to rip out my work and start over.
The dress is almost done. This weekend’s project? Add sheer sleeves, cape and I need to figure out the best way to bustle the train.
Hi everyone! Kelly here bringing you this month’s picks from the press gallery. I cannot believe the first month of 2014 is already coming to an end! Talk about flying by. But here we are again, at the time when we search the paislee press gallery and instagram looking for those projects that really stand out. I hope you are as inspired by these picks as I was.
First up we have a digital layout by kimberleyemma. She used several paislee press products to create this gorgeous layout including Oh Dearie, Huntington, and For the Record. It’s the way she used the frames from For the Record that makes this page so unique and amazing.
Next we have another digital layout. It is by crazycat1126 and she used Press Plate 21 and Magic Hour to create this beauty. That photograph is just amazing and absolutely prefect paired with the magic hour kit.
Next we have a project by Alli_Cherry. She used the 2014 calendar kit to create calendar insert pages for her filofax organizer. How is that for completely brilliant!? She also used the Roadtrip kit papers to back the inserts. So gorgeous!
And finally we have an amazing Project Life title page by Annetteharing that we found on instagram. She used press cards no. 23, press cards no. 29 and the you are loved journaling cards. I love everything about this title page.
That’s it for this month’s picks. We would love to see your projects and layouts made with Paislee Press digital products! So please share what you’ve created either in the Paislee Press gallery or on instagram using the hashtag #paisleepress. Have a great weekend!
Hi Everyone! My name is Trisha Harrison, I can’t express how excited I am to be here and a contributor on the Paislee Press blog.
Today I am sharing a little fun project and a spin on the lovely Calendar Cards that Liz has created, I have used these in the past year 2013 for my PL album and it was a fave for sure … really it was my go to card to start the new month.
This time around I wanted to experiment and play with the design to create something different with it, turns out I love the results.
Step 1 : In Photoshop I had opened the calendar file and one of my own photo’s.
Step 2 : resize both to 3×4 and 300 resolution
Step 3 : pull/drag photo onto the calendar file then find the layer to your right and hit your masking tool and mask together!
You will end up with a really cool calendar image and I love how it all turned out & how I can personalize each month! I can also use this to put up on our fridge or magnetic board once I place a layer of sticky one side magnet on the other ( dollar store has them ) paper. Thanks for reading!
Trisha Harrison (TrishaHarrison)
creative team member / project life-pocket page artist
I am a Wife & Mama. Lover of photographs + writing, documenting our life is my passion. I am a lover of crafts, blogger, Project Life documenter.
Design Motto: I believe in just keeping things simple, and create whatever makes you happy!
One Day I’d Like to: Meet my favourite life documenting guru’s in person!!
Good morning everyone! It’s Carly here today to share more from my Letters to my Daughters book project. Last year I used a Smash book and shared some pictures here of the book, but this year I thought I’d change things up a bit.
First, I wanted to keep the book very simple. I loved last year’s Smash book, but by the end of the year I found that it was too hard to keep closed with all the embellishments I had added. I did add an elastic band around the book to help keep it together, but felt this year I’d go with a less is more approach.
The book’s purpose is still the same. It’s where I share all my favourite photos of my girls, write monthly letters to them and share personal stories about them, our family and our life together. It’s also a place for me to share special quotes and words of wisdom that might be interesting to them as they get older.
The book has been such a rewarding project and one that I feel will be such a wonderful gift to give to my girls when they are old enough to appreciate it.
This year my approach is all about clean and simple. First, I decided to go with a simple white paged book instead of the Smash book. I am also using larger photos this year, definitely flat embellishments (if any) and a lot more journaling. I actually have a number of pages already that just hold full letters that I wrote to my girls over the Christmas holidays.
Don’t get me wrong, I loved my Smash book and the finished book turned out really pretty, but this year I felt I needed a bit of a change and keeping my approach clean and simple fit the bill!
I really hope that my share today has inspire you to start your own “Letters to” book and even if a book seems a little too daunting the project could be as simple as a box of letters to your children, husband, parents, or anyone you want to share with. What a wonderful gift your words will be!
If you have any questions about this project, or how to get started, please leave me a comment, I’d love to help!
Hi there, it’s Jamaica. Today I thought I’d share my “big” calendar with you. I decided to make my own wall calendar this year after not being able to find one I liked. When the Today Journal Cards were released in December, inspiration struck. The cards hang from a tiny nails so that it can work as a perpetual calendar. Each new month I simply rearrange the cards. It took a bit of work to set-up—printing, trimming, punching holes, measuring and nailing—but I love the effect and the versatility.
Here are the tools you’ll need to hang your cards —1/2″ nails, a small hammer, pencil, eraser, washi tape, and a level. A large level would be perfect for this project but in a pinch you can use a tiny picture hanging level and a yard stick like I did. Also, the 1/2″ nails were teeny tiny. So small that I could barely hold them while hammering them into the wall. Something slightly larger might make it easier, just look for one with a small head.
Looking at a calendar for the year, I realized I would need a grid of nails 7 wide by 6 tall. Before I started hammering anything, I taped practice cards to the wall 7 across and 6 down to get a feel for the spacing. Once I determined where the top row should begin, I leveled and traced a quick line across the wall roughly the width of my calendar. Then I made tick marks every 3 1/4″ so that I’d have 1/4″ between cards.
After each row of nails, I hung a few cards (because I was dying to see how it was going to look) but also to add a quick piece of washi as a guide for my next line/row of nails. I used a 1/8″ hole punch to make the holes at the top of the cards, about 1/4″ from the top. Because the card starts above the line you need to compensate for that when measuring the distance between rows of nails. My washing tape is roughly 1/2″ wide so I’ve got a generous 1/4″ between cards. To me, the tighter spacing between cards helps make them look more cohesive.
After 63 nails, a lot of nailing and endless erasing of pencil marks, I was finally able to hang the full set of cards. And was so excited—it turned out better than I imagined. The small variations in nail placement or hole punches aren’t noticeable and the way the cards hang slightly in front of the wall give it depth.
While I absolutely love the bold black and white, graphic look of the calendar, I quickly realized it wasn’t very functional. So I began playing with different ways to add dates and appointments. Post-its peel right off, keeping the original date card intact which I like since I’m planning to use the same set for the whole year. Plus they add a fun pop of color. The blank Today cards that come in the set are another great option. Just print a few extra of those to keep on hand. Really though, any extra Project Life journaling card will work. Just punch a quick hole in the top, jot a quick note and add it to the calendar.
I hope this project inspires you to look at your scrapbooking supplies in new and fun ways!
I’ve got three new products in the shop this weekend, all are 30% OFF during this weekend’s 7th Birthday Bash Sale at The Lilypad.
First is a set of layered templates featuring bold geometric shapes. Use them to create custom background papers for digital layouts, as a starting point for 12×12 pages. These templates can also be used to create one of a kind 12×12 Project life/pocket page layouts.
Second is a set of hand drawn wordart that coordinate perfectly with the layered templates. The wordart pieces are available as geometric shaped stickers, wordart stickers and also wordart stamps that can easily be recolored.
And third, a set of 12×12 papers featuring colors and patterns that I’m currently obsessed with – gingham checks, florals and crosses.
There’s also an exclusive presslist offer – purchase all three as a bundle and enjoy a savings of 50%! Look for details in the latest presslist newsletter that went out this past Thursday. Not yet a subscriber? You can sign up HERE.
inspiration from the creative team
(click on individual images for artist credits)
I’m a bit behind on my year end pages, so I decided to play with all digital pages and it ended up being so much fun! This is my first attempt, so I kept it simple. November was fairly uneventful for me (school takes over my life when finals hit) so I used a photo of my overflowing desk, my hair in it’s constant messy bun and a few shots looking down. Also included the “in pursuit of magic” display because that photo was taken on a very interesting night. The glitter stars gave this otherwise straightforward layout a bit of it’s own magic, don’t you think?
(paper and glitter stars from brightside)
Next up is December. The diagonal grey stripe somehow reminds me of giftwrap so I thought it was perfect for this page. I got fancy and used two different papers, and even added some text! look at me go!
By now I am feeling sort of gutsy, ready to really pile on the embellishments!! My favorite thing about going digital is how versatile everything becomes. Shrinking and stretching are my new best friends, and I love that I’m not peeling pictures up off of cardstock when I inevitably change my mind about their location. This page is documenting my recent move to a neighborhood I love, and I am so happy to be back in Greenpoint!
Once I get some ink in my printer again, I plan on printing these out and then adding some stitching and handwriting on top. I absolutely love the idea of filling in the outline letters with some puffy paint. Thanks for coming by to see my latest work!!
Peppermint was in town for a few days last week and it was awesome to be able to catch up with her in person for two whole days. One of those days was spent at Disneyland checking things off her must-do list. Eat fried pickles. Check. Eat bacon wrapped asapragus. Check. Ride the Tower of Terror. Check. Check. Get a Dole Whip. Check. And ride the Matterhorn. Check. Though the Matterhorn was one of the agenda items that we should have left unchecked.
The following day we spent a few hours walking the CHA Mega Show. Yes, we were polka dot twins that day. Totally unplanned.
Stopping by the Project Life booth was a must. This is Man’s World, the mini kit I designed! It debuted at the Summer 2013 CHA Show but I hadn’t seen the physical product until now. I got to take this one, signed by Becky, home with me!
I also scored on this pair of bamboo knitting needles. I attempted knitting a few (maybe 8) years ago and I hated it. I was using a pair of metal needles and it was too slippery and hard to maneuver, I gave up after a week. I’m hoping I’ll have better luck with bamboo. And Peppermint suggested I try the continental method. I’m cautiously optimistic that I might actually get somewhere with this knitting thing this time around. Now I just need Peppermint to fly back out here. I sure could use a few knitting lesson sessions and really, I just miss her.
One of my goals in 2014 is to carve out more time to create just for fun. Here are a few pages I’ve made recently for the Month of Challenges event at The LilyPad.
click on image for product info
If you’ve been in a rut or in need of something to help get you back into a creative mindset, definitely check out the Month of Challenges at TLP!
Here are some of the exciting details:
- Every participant who completes all 31 challenges will receive a $20 gift certificate to The Lilypad’s store! You have until February 2nd to complete them.
- One participant who completes all 31 challenges will earn a permanent spot on TLP’s creative team.
- Every challenge will have its own winner of $3 store coupons. Even participants who don’t complete all 31 will be eligible for the daily coupons.
Visit the forum to find out more.