Personalized Packaging

A wise Grinch once observed that the greatest gifts come outside of packages, boxes, and bags—and that’s the truth! The best gifts you give are your time and your love, neither of which can be caught and wrapped. But a tangible gift is an attempt at expressing your feelings, and once you’ve put your heart into planning, saving for, and preparing special presents, you want to make sure they draw the attention of the intended recipients. You need something unique and heartfelt for the special people in your life. How do you achieve that? Pull out your stamps and inks, of course! What better presentation can there be than one of handmade love?

Wrapping

To take your packaging from bland to becoming:

  • Stamp it. Add elegance to your brown paper-wrapped gifts with a few stamps! Dancing images on a neutral surface will give wrapping color and class. This advent bag was decorated with the My Acrylix® Magical Days stamp set in Topiary, Cranberry, and White Daisy inks. You can even add stamping to plain tissue paper for a colorful addition.
  • Put a bow on it. Bows from the store are a dime a dozen—and they look it, too! So get creative with yours. Back your washi tape with paper and then shape it into a bow. With the help of a little Liquid Glass, the entire piece stays put. Or, for a bolder look, loop some Cranberry striped twill ribbon into a plump bow to top off your gift.
  • Tag it. Tags are not an afterthought—they’re your chance at saying it just how you mean it. Don’t depend on a store-bought sentiment to do the trick. Cut a fitting tag from the Cricut® Art Philosophy or Artiste collection, then stamp it with a fitting heartfelt sentiment. Add hand drawn borders for a cozy touch.
  • Transform it. A box shape is what they expect, so step away from traditional and draw some attention. Small gifts are especially conducive to unique packaging. A My Creations™ muslin drawstring bag makes an excellent home for smaller items, and it is 100% ready for decoration. You can stamp on the bag without the ink running, and your sentiments will stand out nicely on the neutral background. It’s unpretentious and very attractive. (Such a good combination should go down in history.) Another great option: the triangle box! Cut one from the Cricut® Artiste cartridge, then add golden embossed stamping for a truly unique presentation.

The wrapping you use shouldn’t come from a store; let the wrapping you use mean a little bit more! We wish you a very merry time playing with your favorite Close To My Heart products to create new and charming ways to present your treasures.

Recipes:
4 ½” Merry & Bright Box
1386 Black Cardstock, Z2163 White Daisy Exclusive Inks™ Pad, Z1920 Gold Polka-Dot Washi Tape, Z1686 Cricut® Art Philosophy Collection, Z3017 Cricut® Artfully Sent Collection (stamp set), Box, Paper

Cricut® Shapes:
Art Philosophy
1¾” <Rctngle 8> (p. 65)

4″ Wise Men Still Seek Him Triangle Box
D1614 My Acrylix® Reason for the Season, 1386 Black Cardstock, 1388 Colonial White Cardstock, Z2118 Desert Sand Exclusive Inks™ Pad, Z891 VersaMark™ Ink Pad, Z1921 Baker’s Twine Neutral Metallic Assortment, Z2066 Ranger™ Princess Gold Embossing Powder, Z1790 Cricut® Artiste Collection

Cricut® Shapes:
Artiste
5¼” 3D Object <p> (p. 50)

Merry Christmas Muslin Bag
B1456 My Acrylix® Born to Roam, C1591 My Acrylix® Merry, Merry, Z2501 Adventure Exclusive Inks™ Mini Pigment Pads Set, Z2503 Basics Exclusive Inks™ Mini Pigment Pads Set, Z1822 My Creations™ Muslin Drawstring Bag, Z1861 Mini-Medley Accents Ruby Collection, Z1807 Pink Glitter Gems, Shredded Paper

Advent Bag
D1552 My Acrylix® Magical Days, C1591 My Acrylix® Merry, Merry, 1388 Colonial White Cardstock, Z2155 Topiary Exclusive Inks™ Pad, Z2116 Cranberry Exclusive Inks™ Pad, Z2163 White Daisy Exclusive Inks™ Pad, Z1987 Cranberry Striped Twill Ribbon, Z1979 Marvy® Uchida® LePen™ Journaling Pen, Z1686 Cricut® Art Philosophy Collection, Z3017 Cricut® Artfully Sent Collection (stamp set), Paper Bag

Cricut® Shapes:
Art Philosophy
2¾” <Tag2> (p. 40

Close to my Heart Santa Claus Stamp Set

You know Dasher and Dancer and Prancer and Vixen, you know Comet and Cupid and Donner and Blitzen.

But do you recall that Rudolph and the rest of this stamp set can be yours for only $10 this December?

(C1567 Santa Claus)

You know Dasher and Dancer and Prancer and Vixen, you know Comet and Cupid and Donner and Blitzen. </p>
<p>But do you recall that Rudolph and the rest of this stamp set can be yours for only $10 this December?</p>
<p>(C1567 Santa Claus)” width=”480″ height=”376″ /></p></div>
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Close to my Heart Crush Book Ideas

December is well underway and we are now officially justified to be completely and unashamedly obsessed with Christmas. Is there a better time to get extra creative and crafty? We don’t think so. With our hearts turned toward holiday crafts and projects, we’re finding ourselves crushing more than ever on our favorite My Crush™ Holiday Happenings book and assortment. The possibilities with this book are magically endless!

If you look beyond the obvious uses of the book, you’ll notice that what’s inside can be used in a multitude of ways that extend well beyond the original purpose. Think of this book as a Russian nesting doll: The pieces work great together AND individually. The 30 pages of whimsical designs and textured finishes are the perfect ingredients for baking up some crafty Christmas masterpieces. So go ahead, rebel against every librarian in history and take the pages out of the book! Only then can your creativity be set free to create something wonderful with all the festive bits and pieces.

To get your cogs of inspiration turning, we’ve picked three of our favorite ideas to highlight below.

First up is a new spin on a classic form of memory keeping. Enhance your traditional 12″ x 12″ pages by using the beautiful patterned papers in this mini album. They provide a lovely finishing touch of Christmas and the holidays to precious memories.

The envelopes that come in the assortment are just the right size for holding gift cards! Stick an envelope onto one of these simple cards, made from a mix of papers from the book and the assortment, and then add a little ribbon and trim. You’ll have everything you need to create a unique stash of holiday cards ready for gift giving.

How about a one-of-a-kind beautiful banner to adorn your mantle for the holidays? This banner came together in minutes by simply using Cranberry striped twill ribbon to string together the papers and vellum pages of the book along with a few cards and embellishments from the assortment. It’s so simple, but it lights up the entire room!

With decorations and gifts as cute as these, your home is sure to have an extra dose of the Christmas spirit this year. You might want to add a few extra cookies to Santa’s plate because when he comes to your house, he’s definitely going to want to sit and stay awhile.

Paper Pinecone Parade

Bring the woods into your home this holiday season by creating your own whimsical paper pinecones. It’s a project that looks difficult, but is secretly super simple. In this post, we’ll show you how to make your own paper pinecones with a festive Christmas twist. Once you’re done, these lovely paper creations can be displayed in a basket on your dining room table or hung as ornaments from your Christmas tree. For a more unique usage, try draping them from your doorknobs or adding them to Christmas gifts for a personalized touch that is sure to impress and delight!

So put your Christmas music on, pull out your paper, and let’s get started.

What You’ll Need:
(Makes 1 Pinecone)
2 – 12″ x 12″ sheets of B&T Duos™ paper (We used X7187B Yuletide Carol.)
½” metal pins
1 – 2 13/16″ x 3 7/8″ styrofoam egg
Z679 Liquid Glass
Z1937 Score Board
Z1783 SureCut™ Deluxe Craft Paper Trimmer

1. Choose a pattern of B&T paper to use for your pinecone. It’s important to use B&T because it will be much easier to fold than regular cardstock.   2. Next, cut two 1 ¼” circles from the corner of one of the sheets of B&T.   3. Using the scoreboard, score all remaining paper (including the paper you cut the circles from) every ¾” both vertically and horizontally to create a pattern of scored ¾” squares across both B&T papers.   4. Now cut all the scored B&T into 1 ½” x 1 ½” squares. This means you will have four ¾” scored squares on each cut 1 ½” x 1 ½” paper square.

5. Fold all the 1 ½” x 1 ½” squares in half and then in half again in order to form a ¾” folded paper square.  6.  On the top point of the egg, adhere one of the paper circles using liquid glass and straight pins. Keep the pins close to the outside of the circle so they can be easily concealed.   7. Layer the first five folded paper squares around the paper circle, adhering with pins and drops of liquid glass. Point squares toward the center of the top of the egg and insert pins at the bottom point of the square.

8. Continue layering folded paper squares, working in a circular pattern around the egg. Make sure you cover the raw edges of the preceding layer with each succeeding layer.   9. Once you have reached the bottom of the egg, finish it off by adhering the remaining 1 ¼” circle of paper with liquid glass to cover the raw edges and pins at the bottom.   10. Revel in the beauty of your paper creation.

Nice work! You might just give Mother Nature a run for her money.

Seasonal Expressions

Artwork for All Seasons

The release of another great idea book means we have an excuse to share even more artwork! When it comes to memory keeping, we know that each person takes a unique approach. We love to see beautiful, high-level artwork, but we know that it isn’t always realistic to add all the bells and whistles to every layout. After all, soccer practice, piano recitals, family meals, and all those other demands are important, too! Today’s artwork celebrates a style of memory keeping that is less elaborate, but no less lovely.

The beauties below are all done with just a few ingredients: B&T Duos™ papers and selected embellishments—no stamping required!

Heartstrings layout

12″ x 12″ You Had Me at Hello Layout
Magic: Card Trick™, X7193B Heartstrings Paper Packet, X7193C Heartstrings Complements, Z3015 Heartstrings Assortment, Z3024 White Shimmer Trim

The charming papers of the Heartstrings paper packet make beautiful layouts devoted to those you love.

Journaling spot

Did you notice that the journaling spot on this layout is really a Heartstrings Complement in disguise?

Heartstrings layout

12″ x 12″ Love These Moments Layout
Make It from Your Heart™ Vol. 2: Pattern 2, X7193B Heartstrings Paper Packet, X7193C Heartstrings Complements, Z3015 Heartstrings Assortment, Z3024 White Shimmer Trim

This layout is made of White Daisy bases accented by pieces of B&T from the Heartstrings paper packet.

Washi tape Complement

Aren’t these strips of washi tape fitting? Surprise! These aren’t washi tape strips at all—they’re stickers from the Heartstrings Complements. Their coordinating colors make them the perfect fit for this layout.

Hopscotch layout

12″ x 12″ Love This Layout
Make It from Your Heart™ Vol. 1: Pattern 6, X7194B Hopscotch Paper Packet, X7194C Hopscotch Complements, Z3016 Hopscotch Assortment, Z1752 Sparkles Clear Assortment

This layout is a fun combination of the Hopscotch paper packet and the coordinating Complements.

Hexagon Complement

This Hopscotch hexagon sticker is a nice design element that is ready-to-add. It makes a beautiful page border as it is, but can also be trimmed to fit differently-shaped spaces on your layouts.

Hopscotch layout

12″ x 12″ Fun Day Layout
Make It from Your Heart™ Vol. 2: Pattern 10, X7194B Hopscotch Paper Packet, X7194C Hopscotch Complements, Z3016 Hopscotch Assortment, Z1752 Sparkles Clear Assortment

You don’t have to add a lot to a layout to make it complete! The clean and classy look of this layout is very attractive.

Hopscotch title Complement

The size of a title isn’t the only feature that can make it stand out. This sentiment from the Hopscotch Complements captures the right tone of the layout and draws the eye right away. It achieves the same look as a stamped image without getting your fingers inky!

Christmas Shopping

How’s Christmas shopping going? Anyone finished yet? Or are we all still bustling around like a bunch of snowflakes in a snowstorm?
Photo: How's Christmas shopping going? Anyone finished yet? Or are we all still bustling around like a bunch of snowflakes in a snowstorm? :)

 

Close to my Heart Cut Above Kits

Cut Above™ kits are perfect for this time of year! Christmas cards and neighbor gifts can be done in a fraction of the time, yet still bring all the joy of crafting. Santa approves.

Cut Above™ kits are perfect for this time of year! Christmas cards and neighbor gifts can be done in a fraction of the time, yet still bring all the joy of crafting. Santa approves. 󾔓

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