Connie Hanks // // Christmas tag on kraft with red tinsel Stampendous Joy, EK Success tree punch, Stickles Christmas Red, Hero Arts Magical Background

Christmas Tag {Feeling Crafty}

Connie Hanks // // Christmas tag on kraft with red tinsel Stampendous Joy, EK Success tree punch, Stickles Christmas Red, Hero Arts Magical Background

I know, it’s not even Thanksgiving and I’m already thinking Christmas?! But I just wanted to share this cute  tag I made for a make-n-take at Cool Scrapbook Stuff this week. Are you getting ready for Christmas already, too? I’d love to see what crafts you’re working on, so please share in the comments!

As always, thanks for stopping by. Have a joyful, creative, blessing filled day!
Live creatively!

PS. Part of the inspiration for this tag came from the Advent Calendar Banner & Mini Book I’m teaching at Cool Scrapbook Stuff. If you’re in the San Diego area, and want to make a unique banner full of family experiences for the holiday season, sign up for my class. If you’re not in San Diego, you can buy a kit – they can mail it to you!

A F F I L I A T E  L I N K S  //  P R O D U C T S   U S E D
Ranger Kraft Tag #5
Hero Arts Cling Stamp, Magical Background
ColorBox Pigment Ink in Frost White (background stamping)
Stampendous Joy Mix Cling Rubber Stamp
Versamark Watermark Ink
Recollections Red Tinsel embossing powder
EK Success Slim Christmas Tree punch
Bo Bunny Vintage Double Dot in Kiwi (background paper)
Stickles in Christmas Red (ornaments on tree)
Uni-ball Signo White Pen (for faux stitching)

Also linked at The NY Melrose Family Whimsy Wednesdays link party and Little Red Wagon Challenge #210 – A Christmas Tag

Connie Hanks Photography // // You've Always Had the Key to My Heart card, embossed, gradient, distressed, manly, metal key embellishment

Key to My Heart Card {Feeling Crafty}

Connie Hanks Photography // // You've Always Had the Key to My Heart card, embossed, gradient, distressed, manly, metal key embellishment

Recently I received a text from my best friend, confirming she was able to watch my girls for a little romantic getaway for my husband and I! Talk about elated! I decided to make a card for my hubby, letting him know. At first, I envisioned making him an “invitation” to getaway, but as I started pulling supplies to make the card, I decided I really wanted to use the teeny tiny 7 Gypsies Mini Key on my card and let him know he had the “key to my heart”. From there, I pulled my KaiserCraft key stamp. I absolutely LOVE this stamp! I’ve used it on several projects; it really adds the perfect vintage vibe.

Based on my drive to use the “keys” theme, I pulled a pre-scored Kraft card to stay with the vintage look. I knew the stamp wouldn’t cover the width of the card, so I started stamping with VersaMark watermark and moving and staggering the direction of the starting point in order to vary the pattern.

I decided to emboss using two different turquoise-ish embossing powder colors (Recollections in Marine and Glacier). I started by covering the top two-thirds of the card with the lighter color – Glacier – and tapped off the excess powder. Then I took the darker embossing powder – Marine – and placed it over the bottom half of the card, overlapping the middle area. I was trying to create a bit of an ombre effect on the card. Heat set the powder, distressed the edges using a blending tool and Tim Holtz Distress Ink in Vintage Photo; then set the card aside.

Next I grabbed a piece of scrap paper that would cover a portion of the left side of the card. I wanted something that I could add a few words too, so not too busy of a background, but still in the vintage/distressed theme. This cream colored piece was perfect for the job! Tore it at an angle and distressed the edges. I grabbed another piece of scrap paper, this one in the turquoise/blue color, to add my handwritten sentiment “You’ve always had the key to my heart”; cut the strips out and distressed the edges. Since I was already looking through my scraps, I grabbed a red piece of card stock to punch the heart, and distressed the edges there too. As I was grabbing twine for the key, I remembered the Tim Holtz idea-ology Chitchat words I have and found the words I wanted to add to the heart.

Connie Hanks Photography // // You've Always Had the Key to My Heart card, embossed, gradient, distressed, manly, metal key embellishment

Now all my pieces were ready to assemble. Using a tape runner, I adhered the cream paper to the Kraft card. Using foam adhesive (for dimension), I adhered the sentiment strips to the card. I placed the chitchat words on the heart, then added twine to the key and stapled it to the heart using the tiny attacher. Some more foam adhesive and the heart was placed on the card. Once all the pieces were placed, I distressed the edges of the card again, just to unify it and make sure the distressing was cohesive. And voila! Custom card completed : )

Thanks for stopping by and have a joyful, creative, blessing filled day!
Live creatively!

Easter Cards {Feeling Crafty}


I’ll be honest… I never appreciated handmade cards or gifts until I started making them myself! I was always about store bought, particularly name brands. I think as a kid of super young and divorced parents, I just really wanted to be “normal,” “mainstream” and “just like everyone else.”

Now that I’m an adult, and have a love of all things crafty and handmade, I love making custom cards for loved ones. Sometimes they’ll take quite a while as there are many layers and details, but usually figuring out my design is what takes the longest. I’ve recently started challenging myself to make cards in 5 to 15 minutes, especially when I’m trying to squeeze in crafting time before picking up my daughters from their schools.


I made a few different cards for the Easter holiday. These first cards with the eggs took a bit longer to make. I picked my patterned cardstock and papers. Using patterned cardstock, I cut the egg shapes and adhered them to patterned card stock on a plain card. I added a few embellishments to the eggs (bling, felt flower and bling, stickles) and adhered the decorated eggs to the cardstock using foam squares for a little depth.


The “grass” was hand cut (fringed using regular scissors) from patterned paper, and I added two levels of it – one layer of grass glued down to the striped cardstock behind the eggs; another layer of grass on top of the eggs.


The “happy Easter” sentiment was cut using my Slice electronic cutter and glued onto the striped card stock. I love the way these came out and hope my recipients do too!

I also made some “5-minute” cards. I wanted to challenge myself to get some cards done quickly, but that were still pretty and had a few different elements. So this is what I came up with…


Starting with craft cardstock cards, I wanted something that would pop. I embossed butterflies with a couple different embossing powder colors, and added a couple of strips of patterned paper. I also embossed the “Blessed Easter” using Pearl embossing powder for a there, but subtle look.


Inked the edges with Tim Holtz Distress Ink in Vintage Photo, and I was done. This may have even taken less than 5-minutes!

If you’re looking for other Easter craft inspiration, check out my “dyed” Easter egg banner here.

Thanks for stopping by and have a joyful, creative, blessing filled day! Hope your Easter is a joyous one!
Live creatively!

Doctored Note Cards and Journal {Feeling Crafty}


For many years, pretty stationary was my addiction. I always had the greatest intentions to write notes to friends and family. But even with such great intentions, I have to admit, not very many were actually ever sent out. As such, I have a huge box of unused note cards, journals and notepads.

So what’s a crafty girl to do? Reimagine them of course!

2012-09-05_1964I had these pretty square, pink cards beckoning me to do something with them. So I pulled out my “Big Ticket” stamp set from Hero Arts. Using VersaMark waterstamp, and two embossing powders (black and pink), I created the ticket on plain white cardstock. I used black embossing powder on the outer portion of the ticket and pink for the sentiment in the middle. Using my go-to blending tool and Tim Holtz Distress Ink in Shabby Shutters, I added a little color to the ticket as well. I popped on some foam squares and set it right in the middle of the white border on the card.

It still needed a little more oomph, so I used a scalloped heart punch on the bottom right corner, added some doodling, little heart stamp, and hand-written sentiment. Voila, custom card created!


Here’s a super cute journal I had on hand and decided to doctor it up for a birthday present for a dear friend. The journal was from Michael’s dollar bins, and although it had a cute screen printed flower detail, I wanted to customize the journal for an upcoming trip my friend was planning.


Out came my Tim Holtz Visual Artistry “French Market” stamp set. I love the blue print of the Eiffel Tower. Using a vintagy/newspaper print paper scrap I had left over from the crafts we made for my sister’s wedding, I stamped the design, again using VersaMark, and this time I used a copper embossing powder. I used a fun little corner punch to give it a little more oomph. Looking at it now, I should’ve distressed the edges to make those pop, but that’s what’s so great about this craft, right? Learning, learning, learning!


I used my Fiskars scalloped punches in Large and X-Large to create the little button on the bottom right. And using typewriter font stamps to create my title, I layered the pieces and added a little bling to finish the project.

What kind of “doctoring” have you done to take pre-made note cards all your own? I’d love to see!

Thanks for stopping by and have a joyful, creative, blessing filled day!
Live creatively!

Organizing some favorite crafting supplies

Earlier in the week I was able to spend some time organizing a drawer of embossing powders and I can’t tell you how much I love seeing these!

now I know what the powders will look like!

now I know what the powders will look like!

I absolutely love thumbing through the swatches to find the color that’s going to work with my current project. I used two cute stamps, 2 circle punches (one for the swatch book, the other for the lids of the containers), versamark watermark stamp pad and each color of embossing powder. On the back of each tag, I added the color/name and manufacturer.

This week I created Valentine Tag samples for a class I’ll be teaching later this month. Having these swatches made it fun to find the perfect color and finish for each tag!

I have to be honest… every time I’ve gone into the embossing powder drawer, I’ve had to pull at least 5 (okay, 10) containers in search of the color I’m looking for.

this makes me happy!

this makes me happy!

Now I won’t have that problem anymore! And considering I have taken to embossing on everything – layouts, tags, cards, etc. – I know this will be totally worth the time it took!

Last January Michael’s cleared out their supply of Slice products. I got a steal on the Slice machine and a ton of design cards. Over this past year, I’ve used the machine to cut some great elements to use on all my crafts. Everything from words, to frames, to shapes for an art lesson in my daughter’s kindergarten class. Knowing the company is no longer producing design cards, I’ve been on a quest to find the design cards at deeply discounted prices.

at-a-glance view cards for the slice design cards

at-a-glance view cards for the slice design cards

Now I have a nice stash and created a quick, at-a-glance-ish book of all the designs on each card. Each card comes with a booklet, but I wanted a quick and dirty way to find what I was looking for. I scanned each booklet, then took the components into Photoshop and created a template to create the collage. This might be totally nerdy, but this type of organizing makes my heart sing!

Hope you are making time for your creative joy as well! Creative souls need to be fed, too! Happy crafting!!!



Ever have one of those days that’s creative, inspired, productive and calm? They’re so rare, so beautiful. And lucky for me, I had one of those marvelous days!

I had the house to myself this morning – which really, truly, absolutely NEVER happens! My amazing husband took our kindergartener to school, and took our pre-schooler to the zoo for the day. He did this so I could get some much needed me time. And what did I do with that precious time? I should’ve been running around the house like Tom Cruise in Risky Business, but alas, I dove into my craft space, organizing and listening to a scrapinar, ”Live Your Life On Purpose!”

I’ll be participating in Layout-a-day (LOAD) next month, so I thought it would be perfect to get some items in order. My desk and craft/office space in general are a mess, still not squared away post-Christmas. I can’t imagine starting February’s LOAD in this state. So I took time to catch up with some tasks. Felt great to indulge my crafty and organizational sides, creating a swatch book of all my embossing powders, and made an at-a-glance booklet of my Slice Design Cards. Over the top? Of course! But totally works for me!

I could’ve spent the afternoon cleaning, organizing and crafting, but had to rush off to my kindergartener’s school for Fine Artist Training workshop. I wasn’t thrilled to give up my personal agenda, but did it for the kids’ benefit. But really? I totally benefitted from the lesson. Learned about Vincent Van Gogh – did you know he was only 37 when he died? totally thought he was so much older! and did you know he was an artist for only 10 years? most of his art was created his last year of life? so much to learn! – and created an art piece, a landscape with crayons and watercolors.

Today was one of the calmest days I’ve had in a long time. I wish everyday could be so calm, rejuvenating and nurturing. I’m always so focused on time, as in “hurry up, or we’ll be late to school,” “get dressed now, before we’re late,” “we’ve gotta hurry, mama’s gotta get some studying/work/homework done before dinner”, etcetera, etcetera, etcetera… It’s days like today that help me remember to slow down and savor the moments. Here’s to a year filled with flavorful, savored, wonderfully fulfilling moments!