My blog is called "Creative Smiles" because my designs are the result of incorporating mistakes. With fumble fingers that drop whatever they are holding - repeatedly, it takes a lot of giggles, smiles and creative patience during my crafting process. xx

Monday, June 30, 2014

Craft Room Redo and African Marigold Experiment


Happy Monday, everyone! A special greeting to new Google Followers Dawn and Lorraine.

Today I'd like to share two things with you, my sweet blogging friends. Since I am home-bound, it gives you an idea of "my little" life in this tiny corner of the world.

May I invite you into my modest craft room? It is barely 12x13 feet, and where I spend much of my time.

Recently Jacky surprised me with a craft room redo. It's nice to play in a fresh new place which is far more organized. (Many thanks to my Facebook friends who made great suggestions!)

Before and After photos are here
While some new furniture was purchased, we recycled some furniture, too, trying to keep costs as inexpensively as possible.

Also today I'm sharing something called AFRICAN MARIGOLDS

Ever heard of them? I had not.

Most of the photos were taken 
with the camera held above my head. 

Previously, I'd only seen Marigolds that were 6-8 inches tall.

Their foliage is really beautiful - fern-like in appearance.

Having quite a green thumb,
it is with shame I hang my head -
growing marigolds has always produced disastrous results for me.

I received some freebie seeds in the mail and scattered the seeds here and there in pots without even bothering to cover them up.

After all, Marigolds don't grow for me.

This marigold pack apparently contained 4 varieties of African Marigolds.

African Marigolds typically grow to 18-24 inches tall. 

My friends will attest that for some reason,
 these giants grew to 3-5 feet tall! 

Their stalks are super thick, as big around as my fingers! 
There is a 100% germination rate. 
If only I had kept the seed envelope so I could purchase them next year.

(with pot, these are 6-7 feet tall)

Does anyone from HOT HUMID AREAS know of a great brand to purchase in the future? 
These grew in EVERY POT I scattered them in.

Thanks for sharing my "little world".

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Happy The Car {Sparkle N Sprinkle}

Greetings! And Welcome to my humble blog home. 

Today I am featuring a masculine card using

A special welcome to new followers: Sandra van Blaricum and aussie aNNie.

This masculine card used several embossing powders listed below, and this fun Happy The Car Rubber Stamp Set.

TIP:  Depending on the thickness and/or layers of EP applied, metallic EPs can look smooth and shiny, or they can highlight textures and details, making them look like real metal, rather than applied to paper.

Shade unexpectedly, like above the "smile" to create the illusion of a mustache, adding humor to your artwork!

Speaking of Humor, this month at Path of Positivity Challenge, the theme is HAPPINESS.

  • Perhaps Happiness is a very subjective emotion/feeling/state of being. 
  • To me, Happiness is definitely tied into our state of being, and comes from within. 
  • Many people depend on others to bring them happiness. I wonder if those individuals ever truly enjoy a true state of Happiness, since it would be so fleeting. 
  • Others seem to bring it with them, regardless of their circumstances. 
  • Probably, like a good relationship, Happiness requires cultivation and a little hard work at times. 
  • But you cannot "fake" true happiness. Contentment and Gratitude often work hand-in-hand with Happiness. 
  • Sometimes we have to make difficult choices in our lives in order for Happiness to overcome Unhappiness.
  • It's important to always make time in our lives for a little "Happying Up" so that the rest of our time is more productive, enjoyable, and free.

One thing is certain, thank you, dear blogging friends, for bringing happiness into my life -by sharing your lives with mine, and making me a better person because of it.

My first ever step card! 

TIP:    Create 5x7 step card in white card stock. Use walnut ink and distress all the edges and folds so that the white will not show on the edges. Cut Brown Authentique DP pieces to layer on top of the white CS as desired.

Thanks for stopping by today!

Crafty Bloggers Network June Challenge uses this bingo card:

Column A (Die cuts, Image, Patterned Paper) is on my card.

Products Used:

Challenges this Card was submitted to:

  1. Crafty Bloggers Network - June 2 2014 - Bingo Card (shown in my blog post uses Column A (Die cuts, Image, Patterned Paper) on my card - see blurb in my blog post. 7/2
  2. Path of Positivity Challenge - #15 "Happiness" - See paragraph above 7/2
  3. Party Time Tuesday - #178 Anything Goes - 6/30
  4. Through the Craft Room Door - June 24-30 Anything Goes 6/30
  5. Cards Galore Encore - June - Anything Goes 7/1

Thanks for visiting today!

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

I'm So Sweet {My Besties Images}

Hi, Everyone! Things have been a bit rough health-wise. I'm sorry for not being able to visit blogs and share friendly hugs these past several weeks. But... I am happy to finally be able to present a card.

Also, a VERY hearty welcome for new followers Gertrude Heimetsberger, Helga, Marrie, Lizzi (Les Fleurs), and Dorothy.

Bringing out the little girl in me, this darling "big-eyed Besties girl" by Sherry Baldy should be named "I'm so Sweet". She can be purchased here.

Colored with Copic Markers, this Sweetie Pie enjoys accessorizing her hair with her clothing. Brilliance inks were used around the edges of the Spellbinders Die. (products listed below).
It has been a while since making an easel card, so it was especially fun making one for Sweetie.

The Sentiment is computer generated. The butterflies are a hidbrid of Spellbinders and EK Success, with 2 colors of SNS embossing powders. There is a little distressing around the edges with SNS "Magic Speckle". It is big pieces of EP featuring an iridescent, pearly appearance, matching any colors used on your card.

The Flowers are part of my new easy-peasy tutorial. Hundreds of these single-layer flowers live in my craft room now that Terry brought hers over to stay.

Here is a closeup of the sentiment, pretty lace, and satiny ribbon.

Sweetie would enjoy living in your digital stash, so drop by and pick her up soon! 

The products used on this project are listed below.

Sweetie Pie is submitted to the following fun Challenges:
  1. Clear It Out Challenge - June 17 - Anything Goes with old stash - The flowers are VERY old - several years. I have used them in a new way and created the tutorial shown in my blog post for them. Also used extremely old SU punches and very old EKS punch. 6/23
  2. Digi Choosday Challenge - #24 In The Pink - Use Pink 6/20
  3. Shopping Our Stash - #156 Oldest Die or Punch - My scallop and circle SU punches are probably the oldest remnants in my stash - the EKS Butterfly (top layers) are almost as old - 7 years? 6/23
  4. Through the Craft Room Door - June 17 - Anything Goes 6/23
  5. Craft Your Passion - #218 Three or More Embellishments 6/22 (ribbon, lace, flowers, butterflies
  6. Crafting From The Heart - #23 Anything Goes 6/22
  7. My Besties Challenges - #12 Flowers - flowers in and around the image 6/21
  8. My Besties UK Challenge - June 16 Anything Goes with a Little Sparkle (the butterflies have embossing powder which contains glitter) 6/28
  9. My Besties Norway Challenge - #20 - Charms and/or Punches - The butterflies are "hybrids" - composites with EK Success Butterfly Punch on top. 6/21
  10. Scrapbook Stamp Society - #43 Anything Goes 6/21

Products Used:
Sherry Baldy My Besties darling image #IMG303
SNS Princess Rose Glittery Cosmic embossing powder #EP387
SNS Pink Lady Cosmic embossing powder EP337
SNS Magic Speckle embossing powder EP175
SNS Ribbon
Paper: K and Company Jubilee designer Paper, Lime, Pink, Vellum, Neenah Solar White
Ink: Lime and Orchid Brilliance, VersaMark
Copic Markers
computer-generated sentiment
Stampin Up! round punches
EK Success Butterfly punch
  • Labels Twenty-Five S5-077
  • Grand Labels One LF-161
  • Grand Decorative Labels One LF-018
  • Butterflies (retired)
Please visit my easy-peasy flower tutorial, too. 
Thanks for stopping by!

 Stamping Hugs,

Easy Flower Tutorial (Prima, single layer flowers)

Let's Talk Flowers

Do you have lots of those paper flowers that came out several years ago? Paper crafters purchased them in darling display bottles to adorn their craft rooms. My friend Terry recently cleaned out her craft room and brought a box full of these Prima flowers to my house, knowing I'm a flower fiend.

What to do with all these flowers? Especially if the petals are all the same size? It needs to be something easy because of my fumble fingers. There has to be an easy way of using these flowers in a manner useful for "today's style" of crafting, right?

Get creative - there really are a lot of uses for them, and I'll show more in upcoming posts since the flowers are rather prolific at my house right now.

Let's make inexpensive dimensional flowers that can be added to scrapbook pages, cards, frames, papier mache, and other projects, using what is already in your stash. To make it REALLY simple, how about all those tiny brads -- I know they lurk in your craft room if you've been papercrafting for any length of time.

Make it easy peasy, or use inks, glitters, prills, embossing powders, sprays, etc. Mine are easy peasy.

Step 1 - select 3 flowers. Turn the middle layer upside down from the other two layers. Insert the tiny brad through the middle.

Step 2 - Hold the prongs of the brad. With your other hand, apply the Quick Dry Glue (available at any big box store).

Step 3 - begin pushing the layers together. Put a little glue between the 2nd and 3rd layer if desired and squish those together until the shape is pleasing. Let set about 1-2 minutes until dry.

Apply paint, sprays or glitter if desired.

If you enjoy "flower arranging" on your card, add one step by using florist wire. This will enable you to place the finished blossom at angles on your card.

Use pliable florist wire.
Wrap it around the brad.

Straighten the wire to go in the same direction as the brad prong.

Thread the flower so that the middle layer faces the opposite direction of the first and third layers.

Thread the flower layers through the wire.

Another advantage of the wire is that the prongs can be flattened against the flower during the gluing process.

Apply the Glue

Scrunch the petals to achieve your look. It may be preferable to put glue between the 2nd and 3rd layers, too, depending on the look desired.

The glue will dry clear.

Make several at one time so they can be ready for use. Use single layers of flowers and scrunch them up with glue to create tiny buds. Use two layers (each facing different directions), and glue them together to create smaller, partially opened flowers. 

Have fun using your stash!