January 31, 2012

Calla Lilies are in bloom again

EDIT: I HAD TO TAKE DOWN THE TUTORIALS SINCE THEY WERE BEING DISTRIBUTED WITHOUT MY CONSENT, FOR PROFIT. I MAY COMPILE THEM LATER TO BE A PDF FILE FOR DOWNLOAD. THANK YOU FOR YOUR UNDERSTANDING. 



Calla Lilies always remind me of Diego Rivera. I love his paintings and if I could, I would buy one of the prints. Some of his paintings had women carring whole baskets of these beautiful flowers.

And so, it is my turn to try to make my own interpretation of them out of cardstock.


I began with the heart and leaf cuts from the Cricut Cartridge Flower shop. But you can do it with any Heart die cut. There are two cuts using the same shape. The long shape at the left is used for the leaf, the one in the middle is just the tip of the leaf and it is used for the stamen.


And here is the finished product.

Make multiples to complete a beautiful bouquet.

I hope you like my version of the Calla Lily. Tomorrow's Flower is a Surprise, but here is a hint: Don't be blue, I will make flower.

Stay tuned on Saturday for a chance to win a whole bouquet of the flowers featured in my tutorials

Thanks for looking!
ALI

January 30, 2012

Fresh as a Gerbera Daisy

EDIT: I HAD TO TAKE DOWN THE TUTORIALS SINCE THEY WERE BEING DISTRIBUTED WITHOUT MY CONSENT, FOR PROFIT. I MAY COMPILE THEM LATER TO BE A PDF FILE FOR DOWNLOAD. THANK YOU FOR YOUR UNDERSTANDING. 



As promised, here is the tutorial for the Gerbera Daisies. I was going to do normal Daisies, but I just wanted to add some color to them, so I modified them a bit to accomodate my taste. As always, feel free to do them to your own liking. If you want normal daisies, just omit the inking stage.




I started out by cutting the daisy design on the Art Philosophy cartridge on my Cricut. I tried looking for one on the Flower Shoppe cartridge, but it just didn't have enough petals for the look I wanted. If you don't have AP cartridge, and have Flower Shoppe, you can still use it. You just have to layer more of them on.


Next, I used Scattered Straw Disstressing Ink to blot the flower. As you can see, I like using makeup sponges better than the daubers. Personal preference. On this flower, you only have to do one side.

I then used the Vintage Photo Disstressing Ink to color the edges of the petals, this is to make it look like it's been out in the sun too long. It helps to give the flower dimension and realism. (Is that even a word?)

And here is the finished flower.


Next up will be the Calla Lilies. I love these flowers.

Thanks for looking!
ALI

January 29, 2012

Roses are not always red

EDIT: I HAD TO TAKE DOWN THE TUTORIALS SINCE THEY WERE BEING DISTRIBUTED WITHOUT MY CONSENT, FOR PROFIT. I MAY COMPILE THEM LATER TO BE A PDF FILE FOR DOWNLOAD. THANK YOU FOR YOUR UNDERSTANDING. 



I love Swaps! For those of you that don't know what a swap is, basically it's when you make something and exchange it with someone else for something similar. Like a trade of sorts.

Well, I recently joined a flower swap. Now this swap you could do any kind of flower, but it had to be less than 3 inches and had to have at least 3 layers. I instantly thought of making paper roses.

 I just love making 3D roses either in paper or in fondant. Sooo, this week on top of making the Roses for the swap, I will do a tutorial series for everyday of the week. And Saturday I might even throw in a surprise!
I decided to make a whole bunch of the roses at once. That way, I could have some for my reserve, since it is running dangerously low. I hope you enjoy this step by step.



First off, since I was going to do many of these flowers, I had to find a suitable flower die to make them. Cricut to the rescue!!! I love the Art Philosophy cartridge from Close to my Heart. I took both images that I needed from there. The flat rose and the swirl rose. Now, if you don't have AP you can use the Flower Shoppe cartridge. The flat rose is the same, Second row third one from the left. The swirl rose, you can use the second one from the right on the top line of the cartridge overlay. Just cut the excess off so you don't get a huge center.


After I cutting them, it was time to ink them. I used Tim Holtz Distress Ink in Tattered Rose. Using a sponge or dauber, haphazardly blot the ink all over the swirls and the flat roses. I do it on both sides since it will be a 3D rose.



I assembled it.....
....And here is the finished rose!



Tomorrow I'll do the Daisy that I'm doing for the second group of the Swap.

Thanks for Looking!
ALI



January 28, 2012

......And finally the Mickey Cake


And so this is the last of the Mickey themed nightmare. Believe you me, this was a nightmare of epic proportions.

Let me start by saying that I was going to make a Mickey cake from the start. BUT, I had the notion in my mind to make the cake in the form of a mickey mouse silhouette head. Just like the cake pops. Yeah, that wasn't going to happen. Thomas has been in a Mickey Mouse Clubhouse obssession mode and he wanted the Clubhouse as his cake.

Simple, right?

Guess again.

The base of the Clubhouse itself was simple. My mother in law had given me these Betty Crocker Pans called Bake and Fill.


The center part was just perfect for the oval shape of the clubhouse. So I baked it and frosted it, and it was ready to put the red Fondarific fondant on top. (Remember the one I made the Poinsettias with?)

 
Now, once I had put the fondant ontop came the most, difficult, frustrating, and probably the most annoying thing I have ever had to do in cake decorating. That was putting the head ontop. OMG.... was that tough. Venom was sputting out of my mouth, not to meantion the ears wouldn't stay on it. I ended up putting black fondant and cutting paper circles on my Cricut to put as the ears. Then I put cookie frosting on the circles and just stayed holding the ears until they dried up and stayed up.

So this is the "shell" of the clubhouse.

The base is Green Candy Melts that I melted and added some crisco to make it flow. I poured it on the base, which I had covered with some parchment, and I let it dry. When It was almost dry I used a fork to make the "grass" marks at the bottom.


I used my Cricut Cake to make the fondant Circles used for the windows in the clubhouse. There are three.


Right closeup of the cake


Left closeup of the cake


He was just excited as can be!


The cake made it! It was a smashing success!

Thanks for looking!
ALI


Mickey Mouse Cake Pops

As promised, I have for you the Mickey Mouse Cake Pops. I did these for favors, mainly for the adults. I mean, I have to thank them in some way for sacrificing themselves and coming to Chuck E. Cheese. Really, have you ever been to Chuck E. Cheese for a birthday party? Yeah..... that's why.

I decided that Mickey was a Chocolate kind of guy. So I baked a normal chocolate cake and broke it up into pieces in a container.


Next, I added the Creamy Chocolate Frosting (in a can) and ...



Used a fork to mix it all together. Now at this point, you can start making the balls by hand, BUT I found this really useful ball maker (I am laughing silly right now) on eBay. And the proceeds went to a good cause.  

Anyway, I digress, I made 48 balls this way.


I then Melted the Candy Melts in the Chocolate Maker and Added some black candy color to make it darker.


Once it was melted, I put some of the chocolate on the stick and inserted the stick into the cake balls.


After this, they went on the freezer for an hour to set the chocolate. This is so the stick doesn't come out or the cake ball doesn't fall off when you are dunking them in the candy melt.


Next, usually I would have used M&M to make the ears, but bakerella had the awesome idea to put the Candy Melts themselves as the ears. So I dipped them into a little chocolate and inserted them into the cake ball.


After all of them were done. They went back into the freezer for another hour so when I dip them, the ears wouldn't melt off with the heat of the candy.

Once they were ready, I dipped them into the candy melt. Mind you, I had to put a bit of crisco so the melt could be more liquid. this is so you don't have any cracks in the pops. As you can see, some of my early ones have cracks because I didn't make liquid enough.




And that is it. Simple enough. I finished them with a plastic bag and tied them with a nice ribbon (Thanks Mom for helping me with the tying!)

Thanks for looking!

ALI

Mickey Mouse Overload officially over.......... Or is it?

It's been a week since my son's 5th birthday party and I'm finally over my aversion to all things Mickey. You see, my firstborn is used to getting what he wants. And he wanted Mickey. EVERYTHING Mickey. So, I obliged. I thought, how hard could it be, it's going to be at Chuck E. Cheese, so I only need to do some centerpiece decorations, the favor bags and ofcourse the cake.

What was I thinking.

Before anything else, I'd like to thank my wonderful husband, Chris, because he very graciously took care of both our boys, I was able to do our son's decorations. Thanks, Bebito, I love you!

I started with the decorations right after Christmas. Okay, Right after New Years, to be precise. I was ready to make the best decorations this side of Texas. *chuckle* Anyway, I grabed my trusty old Gypsy (Cricut companion portable machine) and started creating.

I had the Mickey Font and decided to do some banners to bring height to the centerpieces. My mother was having a carpenter do the baskets that were to be the base of the centerpiece, so I had to do the rest.

Simple enough right?


I cut out the Mickey Silhouettes from the Cricut Mickey Font Cartridge and the Letters of my Son's Name. I spray painted the Shishkabob sticks red and used some Twine that I had gotten in a share. I glued the letters together and placed the yellow mickey head in the middle to have the letters POP.



I strung it up on the sticks and drapped it.



And this is the finished basket. It contained the Mickey Head Pops that I will show you next time. I also made some familiar Icon cuts (Mickey shorts, his glove and his star) to put on sticks and have them arranged all around the basket inside. Which my Dad gracefully helped me to glue to the stick. (Gracias Papito por ayudarme a pegarlos!!!) That way, when the Pops where gone, it wouldn't look so empty. I finished it off by putting the black Mickey Mouse ribbon I found at Walmart. It was perfect!

Thanks for looking!

ALI


January 27, 2012

Key Alterations

This past summer I found a group of ladies (and some gents) that I've had the pleasure of sharing my love for my Cricut. I'm talking about the Cricut Message Boards and it's members. They are such a wonderful group of people from all across the country.

I happened to stumble upon their Swap and RAK(Random Acts of Kindness) section of the Forum and boy, has my horizon been broaden. From Altering File Folders to Scrapbooked Recipies (which I will show you in a latter post) to Keys. Yes, Keys. Those keys you have that you don't know what they belong to, those keys. It so happened that I have about a dozen keys. I seriously don't know where they go. Old apartments, maybe the store I used to work at, or the hospital locker room. Frankly, I don't know. Hence the make over.

So, I entered this swap without really knowing what to expect or how to do them. I scoured the internet hoping to find inspiration, but in the end, I just did as my heart told me, like I usually do.

I'll do a step by step later when I do some for me.





I really hate to part with them, but at the same time, I'm really excited to see what I will get. Here is the wrapping and they are ready to be mailed off tomorrow.



Thank you for looking!
ALI

January 20, 2012

Family Christmas

For Christmas this year, we went down to my hometown to spend it with my family. Every year for as long as I can remember, we celebrate Christmas Eve with my Father's side of the family. This is a major deal, because my Father has 8 brothers and sisters. They in turn have 2-3 children, who in turn most are married now and have children of their own. So it becomes quite crowded in any home we gather, SOOOO for the past two years we rent a hall and have it catered.

On Christmas Day, we always celebrate with my Mother's side of the family. Although, the family gathering is extended to my grandparents, grandaunts and granduncles, their children (my aunts and uncles) and their children (my cousins) So it gets pretty big as well. But, it is usually at one of my aunt's home. Here it is usually potluck, or everyone pitches in and brings an assigned dish. I was tasked with bringing the cake this year. So, I decided to make a single layer cake.

I decided to cut all the decorations out with my cricut cake. The flowers were cut with the Art Philosophy Cartridge and the Leaves I used Cake Basics Cartridge.

I used Red Fondarific Fondant for the flowers and White Fondant for the leaves.




Now, this color was way to bright for the flowers I had in mind, so I dusted them with Luster dust. The leaves were also dusted with Gold Luster Dust. For the flower center, I decided to use gold round sprinkles.
And here is the result!





Thank you for looking

ALI

January 18, 2012

Unique Pendants

I been working hard on my son's birthday party decorations for this Sunday, so today, I'd like to show you the different Pendants I've done.

These are done with Stones and Findings that are usually leftover or not enough to make a complete necklace out of them.

They are all Sterling Silver Soft Wire set in 16gauge and wrapped with 24gauge half-hard wire.

Tell me what you think!!

Turquoise and Pearl Sterling Silver



Prehnite and Pearl Sterling Silver


Coral Sterling Silver



Agate and Pearl Sterling Silver



Zebra Agate in Gold Filled


Gold Filled Dichroic Glass

Amethist in Gold Filled


Thanks for looking!
ALI

January 17, 2012

Angel Cake Pops

Today I'm going to show you the Cake Pops I did for my son's Baptism. The Cake Pops themselves are lemon cake with lemon frosting. I really didn't have too much time to make these, and Duncan Hines makes reeeeeeaaaalllyyy good cake mix. I did add a bit of things to make it my own, though.


To bring out the Lemon flavor of the cake, mix in some lime zest and lime juice. This will give it the tiny bit of tart that is associated with lemon cake. Next, instead of adding water, I added soy milk. This makes the cake more moist inside, which in turn makes the cake pops taste so much better.

If you don't know how to do cake pops, I suggest you go to BAKERELLA where she has the most wonderful step by step instructions on how to do the cake pops.

After making the cake balls and putting them in the freezer, I continued to make the angel "accessories"

I used my Cricut Cake to cut out the angel wings and Halo for the Angel. I love using the Cake because it just makes cutting the 50/50 so much easier than if I were to cut them by hand. I cut these in less than an hour. I think it took longer for the mix to set in the freezer and dry afterwards, than for me to cut them.

Angel Wings


Angel Halo


Next, I melted the Candy to make the noses. Now for the noses you can use pretty much anything round and pink, but I wanted to make them oval. So I added some pink coloring to the melting candy and put it on a squeeze bottle. I squeezed out a bit at a time to form the noses on some parchment paper.



After the Cake Balls were sufficiently cool, I dipped them in the candy melt and let them cool off and harden. Next came the fun part, DECORATING!!!!

I used some cookie frosting (but royal icing can work) to "Glue" the wings and the Halo on the Pops. I did have to wait until they were set. I had a couple of accidents where I didn't wait and the wings just slid right off.  


After, I had some Wilton eyes that I added and used edible pens to do the eyebrows. I used gel to make the mouth. This I do not recomend if you are going to wrap them in plastic like I did. It doesn't dry 100% and it smudges all over the plastic bags if you are not careful.


See what I mean??!!??


Just drying.


And here is the finished product.


I hope you like my angel cake pops, leave me a comment letting me know what you think.
Thanks for looking

ALI