Little Bird Advent Calendar

Let the Countdown Begin

by Roni Johnson

Handmade advent calendar made using Hand-cut Monterey Pine birds and old paellet board by Roni Johnson.

Can you believe it, it’s that time of the year again…time to start the countdown to Christmas! This year why not count it down with this darling little bird advent calendar? It’s easy to make and oh-so-stylish.

Skill: Intermediate
Time: 2-4 hours

Directions

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Step 1

Purchase  or build a small decorative pallet. I chose to make my own using wood scraps salvaged from my woodworking father’s scrap pile. To do so, I cut (14) 1” strips of wood 12” long. I also grabbed (2) 2” wide pieces that were 15” long. The 2” strips of wood were placed vertically on my craft mat. The 12” long pieces were spaced evenly along the runners. Once the spacing was even, each cross member was glued in place with a hot glue gun.

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Step 2

Arrange 24 birds on the pallet in the shape of a Christmas tree. Once you are satisfied with the layout, place a small dot above each bird for nail placement.

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Step 3

Remove the birds and set aside for now. Hammer in 24 finishing nails, one for each dot you made in step 2.

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Step 4

Use scrap paper to mask off the area around the nails. Use Fireworks! spray inks to color the tree. Pear Tart, Bamboo Leaves and Cottage Ivy were used in the example. Let the sprays dry completely. Spritz with Bamboo Leaves irRESISTible Texture Spray for a bit of dimension.Remove mask and let dry.

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Step 5

If desired, use a paintbrush to add additional ink around the outside of the tree to soften the hard masked edges. Spray the entire pallet with Sparkle Shimmer Spritz. Set the pallet aside to dry.

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Step 6

Decorate the 24 wood birds as desired. This is where you can really let loose and have fun. You can use Memento Dye Inks, StazOn inks, Radiant Neon Inks, Delicata, Brilliance, Fireworks! sprays, Studio Glaze; the list goes on and on. In addition to adding color you might choose to stamp designs, create patterns with irRESISTible Pico Embellishers or Texture Sprays, pouncing inks through stencils, and so much more. Use a single color palette or the entire rainbow, just have fun! Don’t forget to let them dry between layers, and when you’re done decorating.

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Step 7

Insert a tiny eye screw into the back of each bird to allow for hanging. Make sure your eye screws will fit over the nail heads!

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Step 8

Attach a piece of twine or ribbon to the pallet for a hanger. If desired add dots of irRESISTible Pico Embellisher, faux gemstones, half pearls, sequins, etc. to spruce up the tree. The star on the tree was created by inking a piece of chipboard with Gold Delicata ink and hand cutting a rough star shape from the chipboard.

Hang one bird for each day during December. Once the tree has been filled up you’ll be ready for Christmas Day. Merry Christmas to all!

Supplies

Imagine
Other
  • Wood pallet or wood scraps
  • Finishing nails
  • Hammer
  • Eye screws
  • Hot glue gun
  • Large pieces of scrap paper
  • Stamps or stencils (optional)
  • Faux Gemstones, sequins & pearls (optional)
  • Ribbon or Twine

 

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Top 10 Products For Christmas

christmas-wish-listArtists do not like to be limited by their tools. When discussing which products we thought crafters and artists would get the most use this holiday season, the staff at Imagine decided on highlighting ten products that give you this flexibility. 
It is quite possible we’ve missed your favorite. Let us know what your favorite product is when you are busy making winter projects!

In no particular order:

All-Purpose Ink Mini Workstation – Deck the Halls

Very diverse kit that will give an artist plenty of inspiration. We love this set of inks—Vegas Gold (070), Platinum (071), Red Delicious (092), Heritage Pine (094). The complimentary colors and two metallic inks each stand well on their own, can be blended to create new colors or diluted to produce a watercolor effect.

A gold tinted paper wreath on a red paper door made with All-Purpose Inks.

Use an ink dropper to pull one drop of Vegas Gold and mix onto a color palette one drop of either Red Delicious or Heritage Pine. Stir the ink until it is fully blended. The ink diffuses perfectly creating a well-incorporated shimmer color. Dip the Fantastix into the new mix and color as you would with any marker.

Delicata – All the colors!

These very popular metallic inks dry faster than most metallic inks and come in great colors for the holidays. Our Artists in Residence all agreed- you need all the colors to add a bit (or a lot) of just the right bling to your projects.

Sheer Shimmer Spritz 2-pack – Frost & Sparkle

Great for creating a dazzling effect on paper. These two spritzers will be just the right tone to add some shine to your snowflakes!

Amplify! – White

The airy and light texture of Amplify! could just be the best representation of snow out there. Would also be great as Santa’s beard!

This wee snowman was created with Amplify! in White, his hat was tinted with Delicata in Black Shimmer. The background elements were stamped with VersaMark and Memento in Tuxedo Black.

irRESISTible Pico Embellisher – Clear

Anytime you need a little glassy texture (snowglobes, ice, berries, or windows of a tiny house) this texture application will create a quick and easy glass effect.

Brilliance – Gamma Green

We took a look at all the green inks in our stash, and couldn’t get over this rich and stunning green.

Embossing Powders – Candy Green, Candy Red & Gold

Embossing powders are must-haves in the crafter’s kit. These bright red and green versions will stand out on any project. Don’t forget the VersaMark!

Hand-Cut Monterey Pine 6-piece pack – mitten, tree, and star

Light weight and super cute, these little woodcuts could be used for anything really—small ornaments, garlands, scrapbooking embellishments…the possibilities are endless.

This Monterey Pine ornament was colored with Brilliance in Gamma Green. VersaMarker was used with Candy Red Embossing Powder, while the star was embossed with Gold powder.

Memento DewDrop 4-Pack – Gotta Have

Lady Bug, Cottage Ivy, Tuxedo Black and Rich Cocoa are all solid holiday colors. It’s the perfect base inks to have for all your Christmas cards.

Fireworks! – Desert Sand

We know—you think we’ve lost our minds! But this gorgeous and subtle gold shimmery craft spray can enhance any project. The beige ink base transforms the gold shimmer into a subdued gold that balances somewhere between a yellow gold and a rose gold. It is not bright like the Dandelion Fireworks! and not colorful like Angel Pink, but is very attractive in its subtlety.

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This beauty takes less than 15 minutes to make. Stamped and watercolored using the Gotta Have It Memento set, a simple spritz of Desert Sand Fireworks! makes this simple card really stand out.

 

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National Park Centennial

The US National Park system turns 100 today! Many people have fond memories of traveling to different parks in the system in their childhood and/or as adults. Some of the Imagine staff has those fond memories, and we thought we would share some of our scrapbook pages about our favorites with you!

Marketing Designer Marcie loves Mount Rainier because as a Seattle resident we experience the grandeur of this giant on a near daily basis. “I love Mount Rainier and feel a special connection to it. Often times it reminds me of purple because I often see when the sun is setting and the purple hues are cast on the side. It’s a strange experience to go to Mt. Rainier National Park because close up the mountain appears as a series of peaks and you feel like you are in a mini mountain range. The air is thinner, colder and snow is everywhere even in the middle of summer. It is quiet an experience!” Marcie used All-Purpose Inks with Fantastix to make her page.

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Another very popular and wonderful park in Washington is Olympic National Park. On the peninsula which makes up the western most regions of our state is a living and breathing (and dripping) rainforest. It is a temerate rainforest, not tropical like some might picture. Katie, one of our Customer Service Specialists, tries to make a trip the Olympic National Park every summer. She says “It’s the place that makes me feel the most alive. It’s beautiful, and fun to explore.” Katie used Memento Luxe, StazOn Studio Glaze, and a Monterey Pine piece in her layout.

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Director of Marketing Amanda did not choose a park in the great state of Washington. She took a trip to Utah last year and found out why they call it “God’s Country”. She says of Zion National Park “It is completely awesome to be down at the bottom of a canyon with these giant red cliffs surrounding you. I was there in the spring and all the colors of the park were just gorgeous!” She used Kaleidacolor, irRESISTible Pico Embellishers and Fireworks! in her layout.

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What’s your favorite National Park? Have you made a scrapbook page about it? The National Park system is using this landmark birthday to kick off a second century of stewardship of America’s national parks and engaging communities through recreation, conservation, and historic preservation programs. Whether you already have a favorite, or you’ve never visited a National Park before, entrance fees are waved this weekend in celebration. Hope you get to visit one soon!

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Sparkling Background with Tear It! Tape

We Are Family – Scrapbooking Layout

by Katharina Frei

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I had this picture of my two boys and me on my craft table since Mother’s Day. They both gave me handmade cards, which brought tears to my eyes because they know me so well ♥ I wanted to store those cards somewhere on the layout. Therefore I used a white paper bag at the bottom of all the layers.

Skill: Beginner
Time: 1 hour

Directions

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Step 1

I chose one of my beautiful BoBunny papers as a base for my layout and added multiple stripes of Tear It tape. The tape is double-sided adhesive and easy to hand tear, which makes it very comfortable to use.

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Step 2

After removing the backing, I sprinkled sequins in blue, yellow and white all over the tape. The Tear It tape provides a strong adhesion, which keeps all the sequins firmly in place.

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Step 3

To cover the sticky areas between the sequins, I also added some white glitter.

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Step 4

After adding various layers of more BoBunny papers, my photo, and embellishments to my bag and adhering to my scrapbook page, I finished it off with stamping a few highlights using Memento Tuxedo Black.

Thanks for stopping by and happy crafting!!

Supplies

Imagine
Other
  • BoBunny – patterned paper
  • Sequins
  • White glitter
  • Paper bag
  • Various design stamps
  • Yellow twine
  • Heidi Swapp – clip

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Game Themed Best Dad Scrapbook Layout

Spray – Stencil – Stamp

by Katharina Frei

Katharaina Frei's final Father's Day Scrapbook video game themed layout using Fireworks! Spray, BoBunny Papers and Creative Medium.

The bright Bo Bunny papers from their Toy Box collection inspired me to create a multi-layered mixed-media background which matched the colors of the papers. A perfect way to celebrate Father’s Day this weekend!

Skill: Beginner
Time: 30-45 minutes + dry time

Directions

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Step 1

Here is a fun technique to bring splashes of color to paper. Simply spray Fireworks! onto a piece of clear foil  a few times. Lightly press the piece of foil onto your cardstock. You can either press down the complete piece, or only parts of it. The effect gets even prettier if you use various colors. Simply remove colors from the foil with a damp cloth before applying a new one.

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Step 2

After the foiled Fireworks! is dry, apply the next element using Creative Medium and a stencil. Apply a little bit of the creamy paste here and there, not all over the background.

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Step 3

For the final addition to the background, randomly stamp the lovely ampersand with VersaFine in Blue Lagoon.

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Step 4

Now it is time to get those pretty BoBunny papers, embellishments and stickers on the background. And of course the photo of Dad!

I love to add large titles on my pages in different sizes and fonts. I handcut the large “10” from paper and typed “for being the best” on my old typewriter. Below the “father”, there is still some room for me to fill in some journaling.

I added a bit of paper on top of a Handcut Monterey Pine star. A true eye-catcher!

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Supplies

Imagine
Other
  • 12×12 cardstock – white
  • BoBunny papers – Toy Box Collection
  • Simple Stories buttons
  • Heidi Swapp – paper stencil, stickers
  • Scissors
  • Adhesive
  • Typewriter
  • Photo

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A Happy and Cheerful Character

Happy 30th Birthday Card

by Katharina Frei

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My lively and cheerful cousin turned 30 last month. I wanted her birthday card to represent her character and decided to create a watercolor background with Radiant Neon inks.

Skill: Beginner

Time: 30 minutes + dry time

Directions

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Step 1

I started with a piece of heavy watercolor paper (300g). To add additional shimmer to my background, I sprayed the paper with Sheer Shimmer Spritz multiple times.

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Step 2

I took the color directly from the inkpad with my stipple brush and started to paint random stripes onto the wet watercolor paper. I had to apply more color multiple times, until the intensity matched the one I had in my mind.

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Step 3

In the end, I not only painted stripes, but also added a few dots to get a more interesting look.

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Step 4

A special highlight on this card is the large Monterey Pine bird, which I painted with Neon Amplify.

I heat set only parts of the bird to get a scattered appearance of the popped ink.

Love how it turned out!!!

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Supplies

Imagine
Other
  • Heidi Swapp – “happy” metal die
  • AC number stickers
  • Watercolor paper
  • Black cardstock