Wednesday, December 15, 2010

ColorNook + Gypsy + Cricut = awesome!

I received (obviously early) a ColorNook for Christmas this year. I have loaded the pdf cartridge booklets for my linked cartridges on my ColorNook. I have not yet loaded the jpeg versions -- which seems to be the format for the solutions cartridges. Talk about simplify!! Crafting now involves 3 devices - my gypsy, my cricut and my ColorNook. It is wonderful to look at the cartridge booklets from 1 device. Certainly a computer or Net book would work too, but the Nook is a much smaller size and more convenient for me. I like the Color version of the Nook too because I can see the images just as they appear in the cartridge booklet -- plus I can enlarge the size of the image if I want to. Can you spell "awesome"? Other ereader devices will work too for loading your cartridge library so give it a try if you haven't yet done so. It is freezing here so what a good time to snuggle with your Gypsy and plan your next projects. Stay warm and enjoy the holidays.

Monday, December 13, 2010

January 2011 project and other thoughts

Ok the instructions are done. I am working on March and April project designs and samples. It sure would be fun to have a flip video and then to be able to tape some of the techniques or design inspirations. No flip video yet so that will go on the wish list for 2011. A personal challenge: use all my cartridges and explore new techniques. Hope everyone's holiday season is going well. Stay safe and healthy!

Monday, December 6, 2010

January 2011 Cricut Project

Yes, the project is done. I do have to write up the instructions. This was a project that went together without any fussing. I really enjoyed creating it. Fingers crossed that it will appeal to others and there will be enough students to run the class. We will go green and will create our own chipboard PLUS do some multi cutting. Hope you are able to join me for class on January 4. I will post some pictures just to get your creative juices flowing. We are using Designer Calendar and Cindy Loo cartridges. Let's start the New Year off right and do some Cricuting!!!

December 2010 Cricut Workshop

I was tuckered out for planning a December class. It seemed like it took forever to plan each card, and then forever to select the papers, and then forever to rework paper selections if those papers were no longer offered in the store. Thank goodness I had completed the 10 cards in November and just needed to write up the instructions - huh? Ok writing instructions is not a fun task but it is very important because it is the only way someone can complete a project once the class has concluded. Tonight I am updating/revising the class instructions for tomorrow's class. Fingers crossed all will go well. I thought developing January and February class content might be an issue but I am pleased to say that the projects for both are completed. I do need to write up the instructions but that is a job for later this week. Now that I have this blog updated I can share with each student to help them complete their projects. It hasn't quite been a year since I began creating these workshops but I am satisfied that I have done my best to keep the content varied and feature new and different techniques.

November 2010 Cricut Workshop

Holiday Cards. A woman at the store suggested I create a Holiday Card workshop. It seemed like a good idea. Over the summer I began to think of cartridges and structure for the class. I thought it might be fun to have everyone just bring their machine and then we would pass the cartridge to create the cards. Since the maximum number of students for the class was 8, I thought we would have 8 cards. Did I mention I "overfill" class content. There were a few neat holiday cartridges out in the summer, but the Thanksgiving and Christmas Cards were not released. As with all the classes, I began the process to create the card designs and new cartridges and new ideas began to ferment. I realized that everyone works at their own pace so to make the ability to create a card dependent on another seemed a bad idea. I ended up developing 10 different Holiday cards, 2 of them for Thanksgiving and 8 for the Holiday Season. In November we created the 2 Thanksgiving cards and 4 different Holiday Cards using the following cartridges: Thanksgiving, Christmas Cards, Winter Woodland, Joys of the Season, and Create a Critter. Boy the elves were busy making Holiday Cards in the workshop. Everyone completed their cuts and some sent me pictures of their completed cards. I loved how each one personalize the card to reflect themselves. We will be completing the remaining 4 cards in the December workshop plus making an etched glass vase.

October 2010 Cricut Workshop

Ok, I thought this will be a Halloween themed something. When I originally envisioned this class there was no "Happy Haunting" or any 2010 Fall seasonal cartridges - the best cartridge with Halloween content was Paper Doll Dress Up. I had wanted to do something with magnets and clothes for magnets but with a twist. The store offers Darice magnetic canvas so I decided to create magnet with this material. Also, I wanted to use the markers to create the detailed skelton costume - showing off all this detail. Once I saw Happy Haunting I wanted to create a layout. The result is the 2 page Halloween Delights and Halloween magnets with costumes. As you can probably see, I "overfill" the content of these classes. While we may not finish everything within the 2.5 hours, the students have advised the instructions are sufficient to complete the projects at home. The featured cartridges for this month were Paper Doll Dress Up and Happy Haunting. Did I say again how much I love teaching!!! Thank you to all who take my classes and give me this opportunity.

September 2010 Cricut Workshop

When creating the September projects my inspiration was a recent trip up north. There were fantastic fields of sunflowers and I knew that would be the theme of this workshop. I also had an idea of using seed beads as embellishment and the result was the sunflower bouquet. In addition I thought it would be good to use some older cartridges. This was the first time I used 2 cartridges for the projects but it would not be the last because it offers needed variety for the workshop content. The featured cartridges for this month were Accent Essentials and Stretch Your Imagination. The class was well attended and we had a great time.

August 2010 Cricut Workshop

Did you ever just get pulled, compelled to create a layout? Well that is how the layout for this class began. There was a wonderful photo of my 2 grandchildren at the ocean. This seemed to epitomize the phrase "Life is a Beach". I began to play on my Gypsy to create the design. Once I had the draft, then the paper selection process started. I knew I would use the cartridge Life is a Beach. The second project was a to cut fabric letters and place on a bag. Sometimes the creative process for me is quick and other times dreadfully slow. This makes it very hard to give alot of advance notice to potential students because my creative process may take many twists and turns before I am satisfied. As luck would have it I did have sufficient students to run this class and we had a great time! Students showed me their interpretations of the projects which I just love!! Life is a beach and I'm glad I get to play in the waters.

July 2010 Cricut Workshop

Patriotic theme for July, naturally. Originally I had planned to use the Stand and Salute cartridge, which I think is wonderful, but the store where I teach does not offer this cartridge so on to plan B. The seasonal cartridge, Independence Day, was available at the store so I decided to develop a project with this cartridge. The Cricut Newsletter arrived as I was in the project crafting stage and I just couldn't pass up the July 4 layout which was published in the newletter. Of course I gave credit to the author and tweaked the instructions to make it possible for those with a Personal Cricut to create this layout. The other project for this class was to create a vinyl template to fabric paint on an apron or t-shirt. Well, unfortunately, July is a busy vacation month and there were insufficient students to offer this class. Major bummer. Since this class was just getting started I wondered if this class would generate enough interest to be continued.

June 2010 Cricut Workshop Projects

So, as I began the workshops I was trying to focus on only 1 Cricut Cartridge. The cartridge for this workshop was Wildcard. I wanted to explore creative options that someone may not have pursued as yet plus use some new techniques. In June, we used freezer paper to create the template for a fathers day t-shirt and make a father's day card. Once I find the t-shirt I will post it. Of course, many students wanted to create a unique phrase for their t shirts and had fun with different colors of fabric paint too. The workshop at that time was only scheduled for 2 hours and that was really insufficient to complete all the projects. I have since expanded the workshop to 2.5 hours. Most participants were surprised to find an alphabet on the cartridge and also liked to use the markers to enhance the look of their father's day card. Class attendance had picked up from May, so it was off to a good start.

May 2010 Cricut Workshop Projects

In May the workshop started with 2 projects, an etched glass vase and a card using the Mothers Day seasonal cartridge. The card was a project that had been featured in a Cricut Newsletter but I never found any directions, so I created my own. As much as possible, I try to create projects that can be produced with any of the Cricut machines. I realize the etched glass is a bit hard to see from the photo so I am continuing to seek better ways to display the projects. Let me know what you think.
Here are some pictures of the projects I have been doing in the 2010 Cricut Workshops which began in May. It has been so much fun. I really love teaching. Best of all I can meet alot of great people and see their unique creations.

Sunday, November 7, 2010