Monday, May 30, 2011

Guest Designer at Paper Dolls! and a Giveaway!

Thanks for coming to visit!

If you just came from the Paper Dolls then keep reading for all the details about my guest designer project.

If not, GO visit them right away, then come back! Lol!

So anyways,

I feel especially honored to be one of the first guest designers on The Paper Dolls blog! Tamara and Thienly are seriously amazing and uber talented women! I have stalked admired their blogs and creative projects for quite some time now. Seeing as how they ARE the "paper" dolls, I didn't even want to try to compete with their paper crafting skills so I went another direction with this challenge. The point is to show people ways they can use SVG's right.

Many people don't realize that you can actually cut fabric on your Cricut machine. I'm gonna show you how to do it! Bear in mind, it can be a little frustrating, and the settings that I use may or may not work for your type of fabric, but if you really want to do it, it's worth the adjustments and test cuts to get it right.

I wanted a way to "Thank" these dolls for letting me be a part of their new adventure, and also help them get the word out about their new blog. So I decided to make iron-on fabric appliques for t-shirts and I'm sending each "doll" a shirt of their own! When they wear it they will be getting free advertisement for their blog and at the same time showing off all the fun things you can make with your die-cutting machine.

**Here's the fun part, there is a shirt in it for one of you lucky followers as well!! (I'll explain at the bottom of this post)**

Now let's get down to business!

How to Cut Fabric with Your Cricut:

You will need:
Light cotton fabric
Heat n Bond - iron on adhesive ( I used a no sew, ultra hold type)
    (available at Joann's or local fabric store)
Brand NEW Cricut cutting blade
SVG's, cut files, or Cricut Cartridges

Okay, got my fabric. Check.

Got the Heat n Bond. Check.

Super Cute SVG files. Check.

STEP 1: Cut a piece of Heat n Bond to your desired size. I cut it into a
12 x 12 square to fit onto my Cricut mat.

STEP 2:  Read the Heat n Bond directions and apply (with an iron) to the wrong side of your fabric as instructed.

STEP 3: Then cut your fabric out around the square. (Ironing the Heat n Bond on first helps eliminate the amount of fraying you will have along your fabric edge.)

STEP 4: Replace the blade in your Cricut cutting machine with a NEW blade.That's very important! Adjust your settings. (For my fabric weight and Heat n Bond thickness I had to use a blade depth of 5 and pressure at MAX.

STEP 5: Load your fabric onto the cutting mat, fabric side up, and Press firmly to adhere. (Helps if you have a fairly new mat also.)

STEP 6: Load the mat into the machine and press cut. It really is THAT easy!

(If this is your first try I would recommend doing a small test cut first, checking to make sure it cut all the way through your fabric before cutting out a whole bunch of stuff.)

When it's done cutting, take out the mat and carefully lift off the pieces. I LOVE my little hook tool that came with my Cricut tool set, so I use that for just about everything. (It's even better than the spatula!)

I pulled the fabric pieces right off the Heat n Bond backing, so I had to later go back and remove all that paper backing from my Cricut mat.

I FILLED up my mat with cuts and after about the 3rd fabric my blade was already dulling. I continued using it however, and just had to snip away a few spots that didn't cut all the way out. You can see them in between the doll's dresses.

Although you could really go through blades quick doing this, I actually got a LOT of stuff cut out with one blade, and it will still be plenty sharp enough for cutting paper.  See all the cuts I got....

You could really have a lot of fun with this stuff! Now all you do is figure out where you want to apply your applique and iron it on. (Again, refer to your Heat n Bond instructions for this part.)

Here's just a few of the designs I came up with, but the  possibilities are endless!

I even made these cute fabric flowers to go on the shirts with some leftover fabric!

Looks cute on bags too!

Like my shirt?!! Now here's the cool part! You could win a Paper Dolls shirt of your own!!! All you have to do is become a follower of my blog, and leave me a sweet little comment on this post telling me you did!  I also have a facebook page, and if you come "like" me over there too you will get an extra entry for the drawing (just leave me another comment telling me you did)! See how much I like comments! Lol!

I will pick a winner (at random) next Sunday before "the dolls" kick off their next challenge, so you have to either come back to see who I announce the winner is, or leave me a way to contact you.

Thanks for stopping by! Hope you like what you see, and let me know if you have ANY questions!! Hugs!

Oh, and did I mention how much I "heart" paper dolls?!!!!!!!  :-)

Sunday, May 29, 2011

The first of many....

Re-upholstery projects that is.

We scored these great kitchen bar stools on Craigslist but they were in desperate need of a makeover. Plus, they just didn't match my kitchen colors. And lets face it, I'm a matchy-matchy kind of girl.

Now if I could just finish painting my kitchen I might actually let you see a picture of the stools in all their glory by my hideous tile countertop.

 They have this cool textured metal for the frames and they are surprisingly sturdy (and heavy). I love the details on the chair backs too!

 Ugh! Those cushions are quite NASTY if I do say so myself.

I was very impressed with the spray paint that I got, it evenly covered the textured metal very nicely. I bought it at Joann's since that's where I was when I decided I needed spray paint and didn't want to make the extra trip to Home Depot or Lowes. It's called American Accents by Rust-oleum. I got the Canyon Black in a smooth satin finish.

  And now the Reveal....
They turned out so beautiful! Now they match my kitchen perfectly!

The drapes on my sliding glass door were from Target and I loved the color, so I bought an extra set of panels and used the fabric to recover the cushions with. Pretty inexpensive way to get an exact fabric match!

Thanks for stopping by! And stay tuned because I have something VERY EXCITING coming up to share with you on Monday!

Linking up here:

Saturday, May 28, 2011

The Paper Dolls

If you are familiar with lots of paper crafting blogs, and namely ones that use SVG files, then chances are you might have heard of these two AMAZING gals.

Tamara @ Happy Life, Crafty Wife
Happy Life, Crafty Wife


Thienly @ Mod Paperie.
Mod Paperie

Well they have ventured out and decided to start up their own fun svg challenge blog! These two women seriously are DOLLS, who love playing with paper, hee hee. Hence their new blog,

The Paper Dolls
The Paper Dolls!

They also have a facebook page:
Paper Dolls

I am constantly amazed at the talent these women possess and the serious attention to detail they put into their work. I don't want to "steal" their photos, so I'll give you the link to some of my favorite projects they have done.

Teacher Book Cabinet
Summer Fun Table Decoration
Father's Day Workbench
Thanksgiving Decorations

Teacher's Desk
Party Decorations
Our Family Explosion Box
Halloween Crackers

You need to go check them out. Now. Really. Do it.

Okay, then make sure to come back on Monday to hear some really exciting news about The Paper Dolls first challenge!

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Cookie Gifts

Seems like when you don't have any money, the best gifts to give are edible treats! People still know that you care and that you took the time for them, and they remember how amazing your treats tasted!

Well, a bunch of events just happened and I just didn't have the funds to splurge for gifts. It was Mother's Day, and my friends birthday (on mother's day), and my sister graduated from High School, and of course Teacher Appreciation week, plus a baby shower I offered to help with. I decided to make them all some yummy decorated sugar cookies! These literally take 6-8 hours of active working time if you make this big of a batch, with this many colors of icing, and so so many tiny shapes!! I hope they all know how much I care about them, even if I couldn't get them some amazing gifts that they so deserve.

Since my last post was about Teacher Appreciation week, I'll start with these.
But I should be honest.... these didn't actually make it to the teachers. We kinda ate them instead. I had every intention of making some new ones to give them, until my family got sick and I don't feel right about giving away our sick germs along with some cookies. 

And now, in true Anna Dawn fashion, I'll bombard you with a million unnecessary pictures! Enjoy!

These little lambs were for the baby shower. I made 58 of them!! I forgot to take pictures of them displayed all cute at the shower, and I also decorated some with little dots that was probably the cutest design of them all but didn't take pictures of that either... oh well.

Thanks for stopping by my blog! I love comments so don't be shy!! Plus when you leave some love, I visit you and return the comment love! Same with followers! I've been getting a lot of new ones lately and it's GREAT!  Love you all!


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