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Saturday, March 26, 2011

It's that Time! The Pursuit for 250 Followers!

I have a plan & I need your help to make it happen.

I am on a journey to reach 250 followers. I promised that when I reached 250 followers, I would give away a Cricut cartridge. Well, I am holding to that promise & I am taking it up a notch.

SO FAR, I have 2 cartridges to give away - brand new, in the package, reward points in tact, never synced to a Gypsy.

So, the plan is this - when I reach 250 followers, I will use a giant bowl (easiest method with all the entries I hope to get) to pick the lucky winner who will get to choose which of the 2 cartridges they would like to have. If I reach 350 followers in that same week, I will pick another winner and they will get to have the other cartridge. Sounds fair enough right?

So how do you win?
1. You must be a follower of my blog - that's the whole point of all of this right?
2. Leave a comment on this post to let me know that you are supporting me in my quest to 250 followers.

But, I think these things work best when there are more ways to win:
a. You'll receive 1 additional entry for every post you comment on in the week leading up to my reaching 250 followers. So if I post on Sunday, Monday, & Wednesday and reach 250 followers on Thursday, you will get an extra chance to win if you posted on that Sunday, Monday, & Wednesday... hope that's not too confusing.
b. You will receive 5 additional entries if you create a post on your blog about my giveaway. Once you create the post, be sure to come back here and leave a comment letting me know you did it & your blog address.
c. You will receive 1 additional entry for every new follower who leaves a comment letting me know you sent them. (Be sure that they include your name and/or blog name in their comment.)
d. You will receive 1 additional entry if you "Like" me on Facebook - M.M. DeZigns Fan Page. Be sure to come back here & leave a comment letting me know you did it (include your real name so I can verify it).
e. You will receive 1 additional entry if you add my Facebook page as a "Like"d page on your own fan page. Leave a comment on this post to let me know you did.
f. You will receive 3 additional entries if you follow me on Twitter @MMDeZigns and tweet about this giveaway. Comment under this post that you are a Twitter follower (include your Twitter account name so I can verify it).

Winner(s) will be chosen by random draw. There is no limit to the number of entries one person can receive. All entry options will be verified before entry. Winner(s) will have 48 hours to respond once announced; should the winner not respond in the specified time, another winner will be drawn. Should the goal of 350 followers be reached in the specified time, the first winner will not be allowed to win twice. Shipping is limited to the contiguous United States :(

Oh, and the cartridges are:


Thinking of You Cards

The death of my soror was a very trying time. To help me get through it & to support the others dealing with this rough time, I made a few cards.

I used my Gypsy & Expression to create the sentiments. Both cards measure 5" by 6.5".

Monday, March 21, 2011

Craftin' Sistahs on Facebook - Challenge #3

Last week's challenge was to use your biggest ticket crafting item to make something other than a card or layout... boy, did my sistahs step up to the plate!

Christel over at Scrappin' Sista created an Explosion Purse and it is so cute:

April from The Purple Scrapbook was thinking along the same lines as Christel and made a purse too... except her purse is designer & comes baring gifts! She made a Faux GUCCI Purse gift card holder:

I used my Cricut Expression & Gypsy to cut vinyl for an etched glass project. I used Cricut Cuttables Adhesive-Backed Vinyl in Raven (black). Using my Gypsy, I set up my design ~ "In God's Hands" ~ from the Printing Press cartridge - I love the mix of this font & how it doesn't have to be perfect.

I am out of transfer tape, so I used a few strips of my wide width masking tape to help transfer the vinyl (including the little "circles" in the As, Os, & Ds) to the glass.

When I removed the masking tape, the vinyl was in the proper position for me to add the etching cream.

As I removed the tape, I noticed the vinyl had bubbled in a few places. I took a minute with my burnishing tool (you can also use the popsicle stick that comes with the vinyl) to make sure that the vinyl was completely smooth - the etching cream will run under the vinyl & mess up your design if you leave the bubbles in there.

I used Armour Etch Glass Etching Cream (leaving it on for about 3 minutes).

After I washed the cream off, I removed the vinyl & viola! I have my faith/prayer jar. My daughter & I will use small slips of paper to write things/people we're in faith for or praying to the jar & we will pray over the jar every night. Every once in a while, we will go through the slips & see what we can now thank God for and for what we need to keep praying.

(The jar is from Hobby Lobby and was on sale for 50% off this past week. The tissue paper is used to help you see the etching.)

This week's challenge is to welcome the season with a Spring-themed project of your choice! If you're up for the challenge share your link with us! This challenge is open until 11:59pm on Saturday, March 26th.

Saturday, March 19, 2011

With a Heavy Heart...

I realized I haven't updated my blog in a few days & I am sad that this is the first update.

On Thursday night, a friend & sorority sister of mine was murdered by her ex-boyfriend. She had dated him for about 5 years and had broken up with him a few months ago. He didn't take the break-up very well & when she finally changed her relationship status on Facebook, that was the last straw for him. He went to her home and, from what we can tell, when she answered the door, he shot her multiple times. Her 7-year-old son & 12-year-old niece were in her home at the time, and even if they didn't see the incident occur, they were the first to see her body. Before the police could catch up with him on Friday, he killed himself.

There have been many things said & lots that have stuck with me. Power & Control are very serious things - when a wo/man shows you who they really are, believe them. If it feels wrong, it probably is & it is best to get out of the situation early. Don't "date down" and don't date people who have nothing to lose.

I've been praying a lot & what came to me is that God should be your everything & your mate's. If you are someone's everything, when they no longer have you, they have nothing... and, therefore, nothing to lose or to live for.

Please keep those friends & family members who have mates that you think are "just not quite right" lifted in prayer.

I believe that God's plans trump any wishes or thoughts that I may have, so I am moving toward being able to move on, but I ask that you pray for the Ramey family, her friends, and her sorority sisters as none of us could have expected that this 28-year-old mother & teacher would be gone so soon.

The LORD is good, a refuge in times of trouble. He cares for those who trust in him... ~Nahum 1:7

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Craftin' Sistahs on Facebook - Challenge #2

Last week's challenge was to choose three Bs - items, colors, etc. as long as it started with a B - to create a card or a layout. The ladies who participated in the challenge really rocked it!

Cassie at Cassie's Crop Corner created two cards. The first using black, blue, & bling and the second using brown, blue, & buttons. Her cards are beautiful:

Cynta at Living According to the Master's Plan whipped up this musically inspired card:

I chose for my Bs, brown, blue, butterflies, and a bonus of BLING! I pulled out my DCWV Blossoms & Butterflies stack and found a super cute brown & blue sheet with silver foil detail in the corner.

To make this tall card, I cut brown American Crafts cardstock at 8" by 9" and scored it at 4" the long way to form a 4" by 9" card. I cut white Georgia Pacific cardstock at 3.75" by 8.75" to form the mat for my DCWV cardstock (which I cut at 3.5" by 8.5"). I used my Corner Chomper to round the corners at 1/4". I inked the edges with Tsukineko Brilliance in Coffee Bean and I used my Sakura Souffle #950 for the butterfly trails. I had fun making this card & all my co-workers loved it.

The butterflies were cut at 3", 1.5", and 1" from the Cake Basics Cricut cartridge. The butterflies have flown off to one of our team members who is on her way to new & exciting adventures in California.

Thanks so much to everyone who participated in the challenge!

For week three, the challenge is to create something other than a card or layout (could be an altered item, another paper craft, a canvas, etc.) using you biggest crafting investment! Let us know if you're in - All are welcome!

Friday, March 11, 2011

So sad... the winners didn't come forward :(

So the winners of my 125 Follower wonderful happy time didn't come forward to claim their prizes :(

So, back to the drawing board I went and now... drumroll please... the new winning # is

Translation ~ Congratulations to PinkBlingCrafter & Charvonna Stackhouse!!! (If you are confused as to why there are two winners, click here to read the previous winner announcement post)

Please send me an email at mycraftz (at) aol (dot) com with your name & mailing address along with your favorite color & favorite craft (scrapbooking, cardmaking, crochet, knit, quilting, etc.) by 11:59pm on Tuesday, March 15, 2011. If I don't hear from you, I will choose yet another winner.

I can't wait until the winner gets to claim their prize when I reach 250 followers & give away a Cricut cartridge - I'm so excited!!!

Thursday, March 10, 2011

The Thursday Test - White Pens

So, I decided to add a new "segment" to my blog called The Thursday Test.

At least twice a month on Thursdays, I will try to explore products in my stash & in the stores. I will let you know what I think and invite you to chime in with your thoughts too!

Today, I am exploring white pens/markers. I have been intrigued by projects, cards in particular, with the faux stitching and white accent marks. I polled my sistas over on the Cricut Messageboard and found that most of them use the elusive Uni-Ball Signo White Gel Pen... well, the only place I have seen that online for a decent price is at JetPens, but unless I buy a case of them, the shipping is a bit much.

So I turned to my specialty pen/marker collection. There I found four different white pens & markers - Marvy Memories Opaque Stix, Sakura Glaze Pen #800, Sakura Souffle #950, and Marvy Extra Fine DecoColor Opaque Paint Marker.

I got the ink flowing in all four pens/markers and tested them on bright orange cardstock, royal blue cardstock, black cardstock, & deep purple cardstock. I did a line or so of dashes and a line of dots (what I see on most of the projects that feature the white ink).

The Marvy Opaque Stix showed up pretty well, but didn't come in as opaque as I expected. The Sakura Glaze pen turned out to be the clear one and had no opacity at all. The DecoColor Paint Marker reminded me of yellow chalk on a used blackboard - it was very pale and, again, not as opaque as I would  have liked. The Sakura Souffle, however, was the standout in the test group... though it goes on clear-to-milky, it dries solid white.

I pulled out my card stash & found this Joy card I created many Christmases ago. I added the faux stitching to the corner & the dots around the sentiment with the Sakura Souffle. I think this will be my go-to pen until I can get up the, uhm, nerve to purchase a box of Uni-Balls. Next up, I will make a card with one of my newest cartridges & be sure to use my Sakura Souffle pen.

What type of white pen/marker do you use?

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Diamond Ring Card

My cousin commissioned me to make a birthday card for her spiritual mother. Her prerequisites were to include fuchsia, lime green, and a diamond ring... I said ok.

I pulled out my Gypsy to search for a diamond ring & found one on the Sweethearts cartridge. I decided to make the entire card in the shape of the diamond ring - easier said than done.

I found a circle card on the Wild Card cartridge and decided to add the diamond ring to the front of it. This helped the card base be a little more sturdy.

I didn't think the ring had enough "bling" to it... can't be a diamond ring without the bling! So I pulled out some Joann's Holiday Inspiration gold ribbon, some Core'dinations silver cardstock, some hotfix rhinestones & my hotfix applicator and blinged it out!

I adhered the blingy ring to the front of the card ~

But there still seemed to be a little something missing... I added "For You" from my Sentimantals cartridge ~

My cousin loved it & has reported that her spiritual mom loves it too!

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Craftin' Sistahs on Facebook - Challenge #1


A few months ago, I started a group on Facebook to bring crafty sistahs together. I am so pleased with the response & love I have felt from the members of this group. So far, we have hosted a Blog Hop (click here for that post) and have began to support each other in all things crafty & some not.

Last week, I started weekly challenges within the group. The challenge is posted on Monday and the group members have until noon on Saturday to post their projects.

Challenge #1 was to create a card, layout, etc. with black & white as the primary colors and one accent color.

When I am able to choose a color, I always go with my favorite - ORANGE!

Here is my take on the challenge:

The orange ribbon - which has been in my stash for what seems like forever - was really what got me going on this creation. I used DCWV patterned paper, black cardstock from Recollections & a white Recollections card for the base. The card base measures 6.5" by 5". I cut my black cardstock at 6" by 4.5" and used my Martha Stewart Punch Around the Page to decorate one edge. I cut my patterned paper at 5.75" by 3.75" and used my ColorBox Fluid Chalk Cat's Eye in Tangerine to add a little something to the edges. I tied a bow & used my ATG to secure the ribbon on the back of my card front. Lastly, I pulled out my Gypsy and tapped into my Forever Young cartridge. The "d-lish!" phrase jumped out at me & I cut it & its shadow at abot 1.75". Don't you just love it?!?!?

Monique at Mix-on the Memories also participated in the challenge & this is what she whipped up:

Christel over at Scrappin Sista put her own spin on it & came up with this:

Thanks so much ladies for lending your talent & craft genius to this challenge... can't wait to see what you come up with this week!

Challenge #2 - Use 3 Bs on a card. You choose three Bs - they could be buttons, birds, butterflies, brads, blue, bling, or whatever "B" thing you come up with!

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Valentine's Day Swap on the Cricut MB

In February, IslandV of Scrap InnoVations organized an altered container/box & mini album swap for the Sistas Scrap Too forum on the Cricut Messageboard. I jumped in & then realized I was not a scrapbooker! LOL!

I searched my saved videos on YouTube and came across an album I thought I could work with where I could use my card-making skills to make the pages.

Fo the mini album, I started with three sheets of black Recollections cardstock cut at 8.5"x8.5". Each sheet of cardstock was scored at 4.25", turned, and scored at 4.25" again (forming a cross in the middle of the page & 4 equal squares). Each sheet of black cardstock is then folded in half diagonally. Creasing on the folds & caving the diagonal folds in, gave me three accordion sections that I interlocked & secured with my ATG gun to form the album.

To decorate the inside of the mini album, I cut 10 squares of cardstock in complimentary colors/patterns measuring at 3.75"x3.75" (depending on your liking for a border, you can go as large as 4"x4" squares). Six of the squares can be cut in half diagonally to decorate the triangle pages. Here's a look at the inside of the album:

I decorated the cover of the album using my Sweetheart (Love), Jasmine (s), Base Camp (of my), and Stand & Salute (Life) cartridges to create the title "Loves of My Life". I used leftover blocks of the paper I had from the inside of the album to link the design together...

I left the back of the mini as a clean slate for my swap partner to decorate.

For the altered container, I found a tin I purchased from Hobby Lobby after Christmas. My swap partner let me know her favorite colors, so keeping in line with that, I chose to spray paint the tin black. I pulled out my DCWV Summer Dreams stack and found the perfect paper. Using Mod Podge, I adhered 3" strips of the patterned paper to the middle of the tin. I added ribbon (same used on the mini album) and diecuts - my swap partner's initials & her crafting moniker - to the tin. I finished off the lid with flowers & more ribbon. I just love how it turned out!

 My swap partner, Nubian Crafter NC, has received her items ~ and a few special craft-time goodies ~ and she is in love with them! I am so happy!

Here is a link to the YouTube video that helped me make the mini album.

Thanks for stopping by!

Thursday, March 3, 2011

And the award goes to...

Angie from My PaperPassion has given me the The Liebster Blog Award! Thanks so much Angie!

You make me feel so special!

The Liebster Blog award is given to bring newer blogs into the light. It's a great way to share blogs that might not otherwise have been noticed and should be!

As recipient you must share the love and pass it along to others. As well as these four things:

1. You must post on your blog and tell a little about the award and announce your 3-5 picks.

2. Let those know you have chosen them.

3. Copy and post the award on your blog for all to see.

These things are always hard for me... but, I’ve decided to pass this award on to the following wonderful blogs:

Michelle at NowStampThis

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

We did it! We did it! We did it! Yay!

I reached 125 followers!

Thank you all so much for following my blog. I am so excited & inspired even more to share my work with you.

As I move into reaching my goal of 250 followers, I will be sharing more of my inspiration with you - the videos I watch, tutorials I try out, blogs I follow, etc. So definitely stay tuned to see what is to come.

As I mentioned before, on my quest to 250 followers, the winner of the Cricut cartridge will be an active follower - so make sure that you are commenting on my posts at least once a week so that you can have a chance at this sweet blog candy.

And now, for the moment you have all been waiting for... drum roll please...

The winner of the special blog candy is...

Follower #66 - who is that???

I figured out after I did the number-picking that I had no way of knowing who my 66th follower was (or, I should say that if there is a way, I don't know how to do it). After much searching, I did find that I could print a list of my followers, but that it would not be in the order in which they followed - whew!

So... I went through the list as printed & numbered starting at the beginning (the newest followers, I guess) and ended up with lucky number 66 and then I numbered from the end (the longest followers, maybe) and found follower number 66... realizing that these were two totally different people, I decided that it would only be fair to send candy to BOTH of them!

So the winners of my special celebratory blog candy are: HBrown005 & Brigitte (SE. Louisiana)

Congratulations to both of you!

Please send me an email at mycraftz (at) aol (dot) com with your name & mailing address along with your favorite color & favorite craft (scrapbooking, cardmaking, crochet, knit, quilting, etc.) by 11:59pm on Friday, March 4, 2011. If I don't hear from you, I will choose another winner.

Thanks again to all of you for your continued support!