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November 2016

DYI metallic foil cardstock tutorial.

This is one of my all-time favorite techniques! I love adding shimmer and shine to my projects and the faux metal look is really fun to work with. From shiny Christmas ornaments to steam-punk grunge, this is something every paper crafter should try at least once! You can use it to add silvery elements to your projects or color it with alcohol ink to create stunning metallic embellishments and backgrounds.


Embossed Die cuts 2

Foil motorcycle embellishment

Orange Leaf Card 2

 I created a quick video to show you the basics of making this fabulous cardstock for yourself. You'll need 80# cardstock, heavyweight aluminum foil, extra-strength spray adhesive and a die cutting machine. I also like to have extra cardstock or paperboard for creating shims to make a "press" sandwich.

Part I: Making your own metallic foil cardstock.

I've added links below to some of the supplies and equipment I used to make the die cuts and card backgrounds you'll see in this post and video. I'll be posting a new tutorial soon showing you how to color your metallic foil cardstock to make stunning, lustrous projects!

Much love & happy crafting!


Make it Monday with DIY Foil Cardstock

For my submission to Papertrey Ink's Make-it-Monday challenge this week, I created an "assembly line" card using DIY foil cardstock I made and colored using alcohol ink. Although it's an easily duplicatable card and I made several of them, I couldn't resist trying different color and sentiment combinations. Papertrey's Wonderful Words Holiday die set was perfect for this task!



Once I got started, I couldn't resist switching from foiled cardstock and metallic embossing powder to glittered adhesive paper and glitter embossing powder. Any excuse to use glitter works for me - although my husband remarked that I looked like a disco ball when I was done and my daughter accused me of getting glitter on her dog. All's fair in love and paper crafting!




This was a really fun design to work with and can be done in literally any color combination. I'd been dying to use the dangling stars set and was super pleased with the way the cards turned out. They were deceptively quick and easy to make, but yet they look quite detailed and striking. I think I've finally found my Christmas card for the year... time to start crafting!


Much love & happy crafting!


Papertrey Ink Star Search Video Contest: Card-in-a-Bag Treat & Gift Bags

I'm so honored to have been chosen as one of the 5 finalists for the Papertrey Ink Star Search video contest! I'm even more excited to finally be able to share all of my fun treat holder and gift bag ideas will all of my Crafty Friends! If you like my video and project idea, please head over to the Star Search voting page and submit a vote for me. While you're there, check out the other 4 great winter project ideas from talented Papertrey crafters. I've added a photo gallery of the assembly steps and project design ideas below and will be posting more detailed instructions and another video soon. If you decide to create one of these fun projects yourself, please don't forget to enter it in my November Blog Challenge!



The back of the "Card-in-a-Bag" is a perfect place for a family photo or stamped sentiment!



There are many alternate closure styles you can come up with! 

Using the Front & Center dies from PTI is relatively easy & straightforward as far as creating the front and back panels. Just simply cut the panels and then add a bottom by cutting a piece of paper the same width as the base of the die but leave it at least 1 inch longer than you'd like the bottom to be. That leaves room for scoring at least 1/2 inch on each side to adhere to the bag panels.

I found it easiest when using the edger dies to cut my patterned paper and then cut two "backer" panels to make the bag more sturdy. Patterned paper tends to be thinner than plain card stock. You don't have to use white, you can use a solid color that coordinates with your patterned paper or stamp some paper yourself to create a fun coordinating liner! I like to cut the backer panels longer than my bag panels so I can simply fold them in and glue them together:


The next step is to cut your handle being careful about placement! It's hard to cut through 4 pieces of paper at once, so I tended to cut one, then put the next layer under the first one and align the die in the open hole. Be careful to make sure you cut the back panels facing the direction they will be assembled so that the hole matches up when the panels are glued back-to-back! I learned this the hard way when I cut these two panels and then flipped the back around to discover my hole wasn't perfectly centered. Oops! 


The smallest half-circle in the Hoopla Stitching Die Collection and the smallest oval from the Noted die collection seemed to be the best sizes for handles. I frequently use use a Crop-a-Dile to punch holes for ribbon or string instead as handles take up a lot of space I can use to decorate or add windows. I also had a lot of fun cutting out 4 panels and attaching them to each other to create a fun treat box with plenty of room for a family-sized bag of caramel corn! 

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The plain circle from the 2 1/2" Limitless Layers Circle die set fits beautifully on Tag Sale #6. One again that little half circle from Hoopla came in handy and nested onto my tag like it was made to fit! The caramel corn I made for the photo shoot sure didn't last long around my house! Neither did the cookies I made for this cute little number:


These are so easy and fun to make, you can be sure you haven't seen the last of them on my blog. You can literally make these for any occasion using any stamp & die set you have on hand. I love to cut windows into my bags, but that's certainly not a requirement. My plans for future bags include a wrap for a wine bottle, a treat bag with a gift card envelope on the bag and a gift holder for a dangling ornament you can see through the window. I'll be coming up with some measurements to cut gusseted sides so that you can create a traditional gift bag if you choose. I cannot wait to see all of your designs and I truly hope you love this idea as much as I do so please share them with all of us on the November Challenge page!

Much love & happy crafting!


November Challenge, Crafty Comments Contest & Blog Giveaway!

November Blog Giveaway

I am so humbled and grateful for all of my new Crafty Friends here at Heartstrings and I want to give something back to all of you to let you know how truly blessed I am to have found this outlet for my creativity. In the Spirit of Christmas and giving, I will be giving a brand spanking new Tinsel & Tags Make it Market prize package to one randomly chosen subscriber to my YouTube Channel on the 30th of November. If you've already subscribed then you're already entered in the giveaway! This prize includes the main kit, the accessories kit (yes... complete with the little house die!), and even the extra "cabin" stamp set for the T&T house. This is Besty Veldman's most famous and sought after Holiday kit and it's valued at... well, just like my followers: it's priceless! 



T&T Main Kit

T&T Accessory Kit

November Crafty Comments Contest

Comment anywhere on my blog during the month of November to win the sold out October 2016 Monthly Hero card kit from Hero Arts! Just in time for Christmas. :) One winner will be chosen at random on November 30th and announced here on this page. Don't miss out! Leave as many comments as you'd like.


November Heartstrings Ink Blog Project Challenge

Create a project using inspiration from any of my blog posts or tutorial videos and post it using the link below. While many of my contests are random, I believe in rewarding hard work and creativity... so be sure to vote for your favorite project. The project with the most votes on November 30th will win a $50 gift certificate to the craft supply company of their choice. 

Much love & happy crafting!