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The contents of this web site including all text, graphics, photos and design ideas are my own. If you use any of my designs, please provide a link back to this blog page.

If you use my poems in any way, would you please comply with copyright rules and give credit by providing a link back to this page if posted online: gracenotes4today.blogspot.com.

If you use my poetry for UNPUBLISHED projects, please type a byline under the poem's title or somewhere in the description stating Grace M. Baxter as the author. Thank you.

About Spelling

If you follow my blog or know me at all, you will soon realize that I spell certain words differently from what you are used to seeing on most web sites. This is because I am Canadian and I am a spelling NUT. It drives me crazy when things are misspelled. So naturally, it would rub me the wrong way to purposely leave out letters from words that I know need them. Canadian spelling is actually a blend of British and U.S.

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March 12, 2012

How I Got Started With Cricut

The folks at My Cricut Craft Room Blog are having a new contest. And because I am always up for anything Cricut related, I jumped at the chance to win the exclusive "Sophie" cartridge. Here is MY story.

I first saw the Cricut baby bug in an infomercial. This was way before the Expression came out and long before the Imagine. Provocraft has come a long way with all their newer, wonderful cutting machines. My WANT for the Cricut came from my NEED to send out several thank-you cards.
You see, I had been singing in many churches throughout Michigan and Ontario. And after each engagement, I would send a thank-you card to the churches. All the thank-you cards I saw in the stores were soooo ordinary and plain. I began by making my own hand-made designs (before having a Cricut). You have no idea how excited I was while watching the infomercial on TV. The Cricut was the perfect answer to my card-makiing needs.
I ordered my baby Cricut online and excitedly waited for it to arrive. Before it came, I visited my sister who already had her Cricut, and together we were giggling like school girls as we cut out our first simple shapes and lifted them off the mat. From that moment on, I was hooked! And you know something? I am STILL using that same small Cricut. Yes, there have been projects I've done since then that would've been easier with a larger sized mat, but so far I have managed to get by with the little guy.
 I have made dozens of cards since then, and have enjoyed making all kinds of other projects, including vinyl wall art I created myself, with the help of my Gypsy. I wouldn't be without my Cricut now, and I would certainly love a fabulous new cartridge. There is no such thing as having too many cartridges, and I'm looking forward to hearing the good news about having won the exclusive "Sophie" cartridge.
For details about the contest, and to link up to the contest, be sure to visit http://mycricutcraftroom.blogspot.com/2012/03/how-did-you-get-into-cricut.html.

March 8, 2012

St. Patty's B-Day Card

Shield with St. Patrick's Crest
What kind of card do you make for a guy whose birthday falls on St. Patrick's Day? All his life his birthdays have been a combined celebration featuring all things green and St. Patty-ish. Though cheerful and well-loved, this time I went for a unique theme... one befitting his personal interests.

In designing this card, I thought about the recipient's interest in jousting, archery, and reading books about characters from the King Richard and "Robin Hood" era. Of course, the verse HAD to be in Old English style. More on that later. 

It starts with the card shape. I needed it to be long and lean to accommodate the design, 9-1/4" x 4" which is perfect for a number 10 business envelope. The theme of this card is "Old World". Beginning with cream-coloured cardstock, I covered the front with a crackle paper that resembles stone. Then I aged the edges with ink in black and brown (Tea Dye).

The crest and lions are from Indie Art. These are cut from taupe shimmer CS. I love the smoothness of this CS and the slight sheen.

Shield with three layers plus the clover (shamrock).

In the pic above the shield, the largest shape is actually an outline that did not add any extra thickness. It sits snugly against the smaller shield. For this piece I sponged black ink over the taupe CS. It does darken the colour but doesn't turn it totally black since the CS is non-porous. The top shield is attached using foam dots. There are 4 layers to the shield including the shamrock.

I composed the verse and changed the font colour to dark brown, then printed it on regular white paper. Next, I went to town aging the look of the paper. I used the same black and Tea Dye distress ink around the edges, then stamped more distress all over the page, keeping the typed area fairly clean. One more shamrock finished the inside.

Old English Birthday Greeting
This was so much fun to create! I thought about using very old English but after listening to a few clips from a Robin Hood movie, decided to leave out the "thees" and "thous" and use PROPER English. In my opinion, proper English never goes out of style. I even added some subtle humour into the second stanza, which I know won't go unnoticed.

This has to be one of my most creative pieces. I loved coming up with the perfect verse to suit the genre and era of this card. I can't wait for the recipient to open his card.

Cartridges Used
Indie Art - Lions, shield, clover (shamrock)
Storybook - Frame

I have entered this card in the BBTB2 Challenge for March. The theme of the challenge is shamrocks. I hope they like my "Old World" shamrock.

I'm excited that this card was featured in this week's CHIRP, March 13th, 2012 · Vol. 361.

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My Christmas Blog

My Christmas Blog
Christmas Cards, Downloadable Graphics, Poems

About Me

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I guess you might call me a "right brainer", loving all things creative. Cardmaking is the perfect hobby for me as it allows me to be totally creative, combining design with poetry or verses I can compose myself. With Christmas being such an important occasion for cardmaking and crafting, I decided to create a separate blog just for Christmas projects. "It's All About Christmas" will host all my Christmas items. "Gracenotes For Today" will still feature items every other occasion of the year. I hope you'll drop by often and stay awhile!