Village scene buildings

I have been making a few more houses loosely based on some I saw by Lesley Shepherd. They’re pretty to add to a village scene but are not wide enough for an LED underneath so can’t be used as tealights but I may change that when I get some time. I wasn’t thinking about what they were going to be used for when I designed them – just enjoying making them, really.  You’ll see from the pics that they need some tweaking  –   I put things on wrong layers and the CR cut where I really meant folds and vice versa…   And the Craft Robot had its moments – it seems to re-orient the paper in the preview panel from time to time – like today!

I put the top panel on wonky and need to add one more tab to secure the roof properly but it looks okay at this stage and with contrasting window frames it will make a nice addition to the village scene I’ve made. It’s good to have have different shapes and sizes  to add interest and these stand taller, but thinner, than the others I’ve made. Once I’ve sorted out the tweaks, I’ll make another and add contrasting window sills and door frames etc. to make them look extra special and really pop!

Office tealight house GSD (€ [price])

Gabled village house GSD (€ [price])

Having sorted out the main roof tabs I sent the porch roof to a fold layer so no roof! And glued the porch on wonky! Next time, I’ll stick it down while the house is flat to make lining things up much easier. It will soon be sorted and remade then I’ll add frames around the windows and put it with the other houses. I have now some 16 or so LEDs for the tealights and a friend from round the corner who has helped make them up also has her own village scene and together we’re planning a lighting up ceremony when each of us puts our tree and decorations up in another week or so. I am starting to get excited about Christmas!

Updated December 6th 2010

I have modded the design for a three-gabled house so that it is now a tealight house. Please check the cutline settings on your machine as for no reason I can fathom, the conversion from .ai to DXF to GSD somehow translates the two colours I use for cuts and folds in Illustrator into 4 or five colours in the GSD. The blue lines are folds and the black lines are cuts!

village tealight GSD (€ [price])

I want to thank Rachel for sending me a photo of some of the tealight houses she made. Her little one gave some ‘technical help’ (haha). Well, they turned out beauuutiful and I am loving the gingham fabric trees in the background, too. Do you have a blog or template for your trees, Rachel?

Print and cut houses

Having fallen in love with my CR all over again since rediscovering the fun of print and cut, I made a few house boxes . You’ll see that various graphics have been re-used – like the birds from The Singing Tree banner and Home button icon. I also made use of various window designs created for the tealights. I’m happy to show you this little print and cut house but note it still needs mods – you’ll see that the inside of the windows are bricked up!

I get so focused on getting the graphics the way I want them then miss something obvious like that! I also drew some icicles to dangle from the window sills but forgot to switch that layer on when I sent it to print… still, you can see it’s getting there. The handle makes it useful to hang up on the tree  so I will put a few chocs and sweeties in a few and hang them up.

As you will see,  the one above is for somebody who is moving house very soon – they get the keys on the 13th December and are very  busy getting things sorted out for the move. We all know that feeling and I’m so happy for them – just hope they can get at least one or two rooms straight for Christmas. Not sure what to put in the box yet. I was thinking of some Chinese good fortune coins or a leprechaun  for good luck.

The boxes are sweet and with different graphics and text are easily modded to suit the occasion. First one I made looked lovely as I peeled it off the carrier.  As I looked at it more closely, I noticed it said ‘Good Uck…’  – checked the file – had missed the ‘L’ off!  Gah!

My thanks to Coy-Dreamer.com for the ABR floral brushes.

I am just so loving making these.

I made a couple more just recently:

Snow flake top cracker box

This gift box was inspired by Claire Brennan of the Waltzing Mouse who gave the lovely template away on the Split Coast Stampers. I have changed the top and added tabs around the top to close it up and cut out snowflakes and patterns using the CR. I gave it a  light sssst! of spray glue followed by a  quick sprinkle of glamour dust and although it’s not obvious in the picture  it catches the light and twinkles beautifully.

You could add a name plate and use as place settings for the Christmas table. It’s very pretty and would look beautiful in any setting.

Hope you like it.

PS My thanks to Yasny Chan for the beautiful floral PS brushes

Thank you for looking

Teahouses to teapots

I made a little teapot (it was one of a couple of things that was shown on Create and Craft way back – my teeny tiny claim to fame!) some time ago but since I’ve fallen in love with  the CR print and cut function since then and I’ve been giving everything a makeover.

I’m still perfecting the technique of taking the cut layer from Illustrator, turning it white or off, and pasting into Photoshop and using brushes to decorate specific elements before pasting it back into Illustrator for cutting with the CR.  I was nearly there with the teapot I did below  although alignments of some things isn’t spot on and I couldn’t tell from the outline where to ‘stamp’ on the spout so it looks a bit bare. But I  have now got it sussed and it’s just joy!

The possibilities are exciting and I can’t wait to get some A3 paper in to work with something bigger. They’re dinky and cute but I do want to use them to put fruit tea sachets in as stocking fillers so they need to be scaled up. I took pictures of them ‘clean’ then sponged the edges a bit to see how that looked. I like both.

See what you think:

This is the teapot next to a standard tea bag – you can see the small one is a bit small to do anything useful with!

Come and see my etchings…

A quick update  (Nov 27) on the jar etching I started. It’s going great. I decorated a tall jar last night and have three more like it to do and 4 small ones.

Finally got cracking on some Christmas makes that have been earmarked for some time now. I’ve bought a few Killner jars as  presents;  they’re very useful but without decoration and something nice inside, they’re dull boys to be giving. I plucked up courage to try out glass etching. This is something I’ve put off for some time thinking  it was messy or difficult but it really isn’t.  There are pictures below showing the basic stages.

There’s no limit to decorating glassware. Text, patterns… anything you fancy. Jar one is going to be filled with Roses so the word ‘Sweet’ does the trick for the decoration.  (I was going to use the word ‘sweeties’ but that imposes  limits on what the jar would be appropriate for once the sweets were eaten. ‘Sweet’ is a little more generic).

I started by measuring the area that I wanted to etch then typed out the word ‘Sweet’ to fit in that area. I put a rectangle around the text then cut it from some vinyl on the CR.  The mask was stuck down onto the jar and burnished well to make sure the vinyl didn’t have any wrinkles to let the etching cream leech under.

Next,  I put down some tin foil to catch any drips and gave the text a coating of cream. It goes on very easily and isn’t runny at all. Take care not to go over the edge of the black rectangle and keep the cream on the text and mask only. You don’t want any stray blobs or smears on the rest of the jar. This is left for 15 minutes. It looks very  like melted chocolate so I would say don’t do this while young children are around  as they might be tempted to touch or  taste it.

When the 15 minutes is up, scrape off the cream and get as much as you can back in the bottle to be used again, then rinse the rest off under the tap.

Peel off the vinyl and you are left with your etching!

The photo doesn’t do it justice  – it was a mare of a photo to take as I had to use flash (no daylight when I took this pic) then had problems with glare and then had to faff around with a filter and…. meh! You know how it is.

I’m just waiting for a batch of salt dough hearts to dry (painted and now varnished) to tie around the top of the jar with a gift tag.  Hopefully, they will be dry by tomorrow.

I’m amazed it’s so easy and can see lots of opportunities to personalise all sorts of things. I hope this encourages you to have a go as well. Thank you for looking.

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