I though I'd better make a start with my Christmas cards so I used the Winter's Delight bundle by Lara's Digi World:
I just love the clusters in this kit and. since I saw elsewhere on the internet some very minimalistic cards, I thought I'd be able to copy the idea to make something similar.
I have been busy making Christmas goodies these past couple of weeks using the Snow in Love collection by Snickerdoodle Designs:
The collection (which can also be bought separately) can be found here:
The first thing I made was a gift bag:
The kit comes with the gift tags and money gift cards all ready for printing, so all I had to do was print the bag (I just used a sheet of A4 white card and printed the paper onto it). I just scored the sheet of A4 at 2", 5", 7" and 10" on the long side, and then at 2" and 7" on the short side, trimmed some of the end bits off and stuck the bag together. It's based on a Split Coast Stampers tutorial which can be found:
The tutorial is very easy to follow and comes with photos and a video too.
I embellished the bag with glitter glue for the snowflakes, used scalloped edge scissors to trim the top of the bag and added a wire ribbon and tag (also from the Snow in Love collection). I just need the gift to go in it now!
The gift tags I have printed ready for Christmas, and I plan on using the gift card holders either for (surprise, surprise!) gift cards or maybe some folded up money as I know our older children want money this year instead of presents. As already mentioned, since the gift cards and tags come ready made in the kit, all you have to do is print them out. I just placed the tags/cards on a sheet of A4 so I could print out more than one at a time.
These were really quick and easy to make and look really effective.
I also thought I would make a start of my advent calendars. It is a tradition now in our house that I make each of my children an advent calendar. Last year, I didn't make one for our second son as he was at University and he was so upset at being missed out, we had to go and buy him one from the shops! Well, I daren't make that mistake again, so am having to make five calendars (one for each child plus a spare one for myself, as there is no way I am missing out on the chocolates!).
I used the Snow in Love kit again for this, printing off one of the papers on A4 cardstock and then made 25 separate tags like this:
I always have trouble with the tags, as it is difficult to judge the size of the part used to stick the tag onto the card. In previous years, I stuck them onto the face of the card (and ended up having them fall off during December with the weight of the chocolate inside), but this year, I cut lines in the card to insert the tag bit through and after some trial and error, ended up using strong red double sided tape to adhere them to the back of the tag. I found Selotape wasn't strong enough to hold the little tag bits in place, Pritt was next to useless and I know from last year that the standard double sided tape just isn't strong enough. It remains to be seen whether the strong double sided tape will work as I haven't put the chocolates in yet.
This is what the final calendar looked like (minus chocolates):
I'm quite pleased with it but, like I say, the proof of the pudding (or the strength of the double sided tape) lies in what happens once I put the chocolates in. Actually, finding the chocolates will be another story in itself as I always have problems with that. I like to use Cadbury miniatures as they are just the right size to fit the tags but I always seem to have trouble finding any in the shops. You can buy the chunky Cadbury ones, but the small ones? Well, you have to hunt high and low, or at least in Shropshire you do! Generally, the only places I tend to find these are either at the local town market or at B & M if I am lucky, otherwise, I have to find some other chocolate (and really, it does need to be Cadbury's as nothing else tastes quite the same!). So, I shall have to see what I can get this year, once I have printed off the other 4 calendars. I suppose I could always resort to a tin of Cadbury Heroes or Roses, which would then leave me with the problem of what to do with the left over chocolates.......hmmm, tricky!!!
I'm also in the process of making an A4 calendar. This year, I am trying to persuade my husband to let me get them printed professionally. In previous years, I have printed about 15 calendars myself and bound them with my Bind it All, but to be honest, I end up using at least one set of cartridges, if not two. Since I can get 50 calendars printed for just over £100, the cost of 2 complete sets of cartridges, it makes sense to get someone else to do the printing and binding! I could then maybe sell the spare calendars and maybe make enough to cover the costs!
I have also got plans for a recipe book and need to get that sorted soon too. I'm going to use the Black Label Classics Country Cookbook but so far, just have the idea in my head!
I guess I am going to be busy, what with the calendar, the recipe book, more gift tags and trying to fit in some work as well. Why, oh why does the tax return filing deadline have to fall at the end of January? It always means I have to work like crazy all the way through November, December and January......