Category Archives: Holiday Crafts

Fall Table Runner with Wired Burlap Ribbon

Fall table runner with felt appliqué leaves
Fall table runner with felt appliqué leaves, enhanced with embroidery thread, sequins and beads

This project is inspired by memories of sewing kits that I used to work on when I was a kid. I remember one kit in particular was a calendar printed on burlap with certain areas of the design accented with sequins attached by running thread through seed beads. Here is an original design of mine that reminds me of all that fun!

Tools and Materials

Fall leaves
Scissors
Scrap paper
Heavy books
Marker
Scrap chipboard
Fabric scissors
Ball point pen
Masking tape
Wide burlap ribbon with metallic threads in it – about 9 inches wide
Harvest gold color wired burlap-look ribbon – 1 1/2 inches wide
Felt in a assorted fall leaf colors
Washable fabric marking pen
Gold metallic embroidery thread – six strand
Embroidery thread in off white, rust and dark brown
Assorted size sequins in fall and earthy colors such as ochre, brown, bronze, copper and gold
Copper or bronze colored seed beads – select ones with holes big enough for a threaded needle to pass through twice
Scrap fabric in a rustic color for the ends
Needles – tapestry and embroidery

Directions

Chipboard leaves made as templates
Chipboard leaves made as templates. Leaf veins were drawn on for future reference in designs.

Walk around your neighborhood and collect leaves to use as templates. Choose leaves more for their shape than their color – you want ones that will flatten easily and are roughly the size of your hand and smaller.

Place your leaves on a hard surface like a table between pieces of scrap paper. Stack books or other flat heavy objects on top and allow to sit for several hours to press leaves for easier handling.

Place leaves on scrap chipboard and trace around with marker. Loosely draw where the leaf veins are on the cardboard for future reference. Discard leaves in the compost if you don’t want them for another project. Cut out the chipboard leaves.

Cut a piece of wide burap ribbon the length that you want for your table runner, plus about 4 extra inches for hemming. Before cutting, tape a piece of masking tape just inside where you plan to cut. The tape will help keep the ends of the ribbon from unraveling.

Pin down the hems on the ends but don’t sew yet.

Fold wired burlap ribbon lengthwise and pin along the long sides of the ribbon.

Use tapestry needle and full thickness of the gold embroidery thread to sew the ribbon in place with a running stitch just inside the wired edge.

Trace around the chipboard leaf shapes with a ball point pen on the backs of various colors of felt. Cut out leaf shapes.

Place felt leaves on your runner in an arrangement that you like. Pin in place.

Split lengths of the six-strand gold embroidery thread lengthwise into pieces with three strands each. Use the three-strand pieces to sew a running stitch along the edges of the felt leaves, attaching them to the wide burlap ribbon.

Stitch leaf vein marks using a running stitch with the various embroidery thread colors. For example try rust color thread for the veins on the light brown felt, off-white thread for the ochre felt and dark brown for the gold and orange felt. If it helps to figure out where to sew the leaf veins, refer back to your chipboard leaves and draw the veins on the felt with the washable fabric marker. After you’re done sewing on the leaf viens, dab any washable marker marks that show with a damp cloth to get rid of them.

Accent the leaves with a few scattered sequins on each nestled among the embroidered leaf veins in a manner that suggests the spots and color variations that you find on natural fallen leaves. Hold the sequins on by bringing a thread from the back through a bead, around the side of the bead then back down through the sequin. Go back through each bead at least twice for durability. Sew a few beads by themselves among the sequins.

Pin and fold strips of fabric to the ends to cover up the raw edge of the ribbon. Sew in place with the metallic embroidery thread.

When the fall season is over, store your table runner rolled up so that the wire in the ribbon does not kink.

Make Four Different Valentine Cards

I have four free templates you can download to make these card designs!

Tool and Supply List:

Cardstock
Clean scrap paper
Bone folder
Metal ruler
Craft knife (X-Acto or something similar)
Palette (could be a real ink palette or plastic lid, piece of freezer paper, etc.)
Cutting mat
Pencil
Eraser
Rubber stamps (Valentine themed, postal themed, alphabet stamps)
Stamping ink pads and re-inkers in the following colors: Black, dark brown, rust brown, red, lt. ochre, hot pink, lt. gray, lt. tan
Acrylic stamp mounting blocks
Scoring tool
Double-sided tape
Paper cutter
Heart shaped punches
Alphabet stencil (optional)
Markers (optional)
Colored pencils (optional)
Standard hole punch
Scissors
Decorative scissors with postage stamp perforation pattern or deckle edge pattern
Glue stick
Masking tape
Unused white plastic eraser with flat sides (like Magic Rub)
Small heart cookie cutter (for Card 4) or heart punch or stencil

vcard_4_web

Card 1 – Faux Postage Valentine

    • Download template “Faux Postage Valentine” and print out on cardstock if you are able, otherwise print on text-weight paper.http://www.carolynsstampstore.com/catalog/members/valentines_2016_1.pdf
    • Cut out the two viewfinders and if you printed out the template on text-weight paper laminate to scrap cardstock or chipboard with a glue stick for durability. Cut out the two centers and keep for tracing.
    • stamped_strips_webStamp background stamps in a variety of light to medium colors on light colored papers. For my samples I used inks in the neutral range on pastel and neutral papers.
    • Use the viewfinder labeled “Viewfinder for inner piece” and trace in pencil on the backs of your stamped pieces a number of rectangles for the inner pieces. Make more than you need in case you make any stamping mistakes and need extras. Cut out pieces.


inner_pieces_web

    • Choose ink colors for the edges of the inner pieces. Squirt a little ink onto a palette and use your flat-sided eraser to apply to all the edges. A color of medium intensity or darkness is a good choice.
    • Next we will be adding the letters L, O, V, and E to these pieces. An easy way is to stamp the letters with alphabet stamps in black.
    • A variation is to stamp a plain heart stamp in red and pink in the pieces first then stamp a smaller alphabet set in black. Make sure the heart ink is dry first before stamping the letters or the ink may blur (see below).


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    • Another option if you want to use a smaller stamp set is to stamp hearts in brown then glue on heart shaped punch-outs that have been stamped with letters in black (see below).

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    • If you have an alphabet stencil in the right size range you could also add the letters by tracing with marker and coloring in with marker and colored pencil. Markers can make some rubber stamp inks smear so test first before coloring (see below).

vcard_3_web

  • Next select some patterned papers that would make good edges for your lettered pieces. This is a good way to use up some scraps if you have them in harmonious colors. Use the viewfinder labeled “Viewfinder for edge piece” and trace in the window in pencil on the backs of your patterned papers. cut out an assortment of rectangles with patterned scissors – stamp perforation and deckle edge patterns are particularly effective for simulating the look of a postage stamp. See what inner pieces look best on which outer pieces and glue down when you’ve made your choices.
  • Arrange your letter pieces on a piece of scrap paper and stamp some accents with small stamps that reinforce the postal and Valentine themes.
  • Choose a piece of cardstock that would make a good ground for your card and cut it into an 8″ x 5.25″ piece. Score it down the middle and fold in half. Flatten well with bone folder.
  • Choose a background stamp that is about 3″ wide and stamp it on the front of the card at an angle according to the sketch. If you don’t have a suitable background stamp you can glue on a piece of decorative paper instead.
  • Cut a 1″ wide strip of light colored paper with decorative scissors and glue it across the card front according to the sketch. Trim off the edges.
  • Glue down letter pieces on front of card as indicated on sketch.
  • Stamp a faux postmark in a dark color at the upper right, or a different stamp that fits the theme if you don’t have a postmark stamp.
  • If you like, stamp a credit stamp on the back of the card.

Card 2 – Valentine With Three Postal Collages

trimmed_card2_web

  • Download and print out template.
    http://www.carolynsstampstore.com/catalog/members/valentines_2016_2.pdf
  • Cut out and make viewfinders as you did for the first card.
  • tag_bg_webTake half of an 8.5 x 11 piece of cardstock and stamp all over in a light neutral color with stamp that fits a Valentine or postal theme.
  • Glue down four real Love themed postage stamps. If you don’t have any real stamps you can make some Valentine Faux Postage or use Valentine themed stickers. Some faux postage is here: http://www.chasenfratz.com/wp/valentine-faux-postage/
  • Punch eight small hearts out of variety of paper scraps in harmonious colors and glue down.
  • tag_collage_bg_webStamp a variety of postal and Valentine themed stamps in a medium color such as rust brown. This type of collage can be used in a variety of projects so while you have all the parts out you might want to make several collages.
  • Use viewfinder to choose and cut three pieces (1.25 x 1.5 in) out of your collage.
  • Glue these onto three pieces of paper (1.5 x 1.75) cut out with decorative scissors.
  • Stamp edges in a dark color with the flat sided eraser.
  • Highlight with postal themed stamps in a dark color.
  • Choose a piece of cardstock that would make a good ground for your card and cut it into an 8″ x 5.25″ piece. Score it down the middle and fold in half. Flatten well with bone folder.
  • Glue a 5.5 in x 2.25 in piece of decorative paper across the front of the card.
  • Stamp a border accent stamp above and below the paper strip. You could also use a sticker or a rub-on.
  • Glue your collages down.
  • Stamp credit stamp on the back if you want to.

Card 3 – Valentine Tag Card

Valentine Card by Carolyn Hasenfratz

  • Download and print out template.
    http://www.carolynsstampstore.com/catalog/members/valentines_2016_3.pdf
  • Cut out tag and envelope templates.
  • Trace tag onto back of collage and cut out tag piece. Punch a hole where indicated.
  • threetags_webStamp edges of tag with dark colored ink with a flat eraser on both front and back of tag.
  • Stamp around hole in a dark color with small heart stamp or a circle stamp if you have one.

  • iloveyou_tag_webStamp a light colored heart on the back of the tag followed by a sentiment in a dark color.
  • Tie a piece of string or ribbon onto tag.
  • Choose a piece of cardstock that would make a good ground for your card and cut it into an 8″ x 5.25″ piece. Score it down the middle and fold in half. Flatten well with bone folder.
  • Cut a 1″ strip of decorative paper and glue it down the left side according to sketch. On this strip or any of the other paper strips you can use decorative scissors if you want to.
  • Cut out a wider strip of contrasting paper and glue it down at an angle across the top of the card.
  • Cut out another 1″ wide strip in a light color and stamp a sentiment on it. When ink is dry, glue in the middle of the wider angled strip.
  • Use pocket template to trace on decorative paper and cut out. Trim if needed and burnish glued pieces well.
  • Fold down flaps on pocket.
  • Trace the small heart cookie cutter with pencil (or use a punch or a stencil) and cut a small heart shape out of the front of the pocket.
  • Put double-sided tape onto flaps, trim if needed. Press pocket down on the front of the card. Burnish with bone folder with a piece of clean scrap paper between.
  • Stamp the back of the card with a credit stamp if you want to.
  • Slide tag into pocket.

Card 4 – Collaged Heart Card

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  • Download and print out template.
    http://www.carolynsstampstore.com/catalog/members/valentines_2016_4.pdf
  • Cut out the two hearts on page 2 to use as templates.
  • Make a collage of Valentine themed paper scraps on cardstock.
  • Cut a heart shaped piece out of your collage using the inner smaller heart on the template as a guide.
  • Choose a piece of cardstock that would make a good ground for your card and cut it into an 8″ x 5.25″ piece. Score it down the middle and fold in half. Flatten well with bone folder.
  • Choose a piece of decorative paper that contrasts well with your collage and the background of your card. Trace around the larger heart and cut out.
  • Glue the smaller heart onto the larger heart and glue all to the front of the card.
  • Trim card and stamp the back of the card with a credit stamp if you want to.

My Handmade Greeting Cards are Available at Schnarr’s in Ladue

Carolyn's cards on the rack at Schnarr's Ladue
Carolyn’s cards on the rack at Schnarr’s Ladue

The Schnarr’s Hardware store at 9800 Clayton Rd., St. Louis, MO 63124 has a very active shipping department that does UPS shipping and sells a selection of shipping supplies. Greeting cards are also offered and I have some of my own cards on the rack there for sale now. They are all handmade and blank inside. The current selections include cards for Valentine’s Day, St. Patrick’s Day and Easter, as well as Birthday, Thank You, and multiple occasion cards. I decorated the cards with a variety of paper craft techniques including collage, stenciling and rubber stamping.

Some of my cards are also available with other handcrafts in my online store in the Handmade by Carolyn section.

Easter Card Tutorial

Easter card with rubber stamped and stenciled decoration
Easter card with rubber stamped and stenciled decoration

Here is a project that will help you use up some paper scraps!

Tools and Supplies
Scissors
Decorative paper scraps in pastel and spring colors
Pencil
Paper cutter
Corner rounder
Cardstock
Scoring tool
Folding tool
Masking tape (low-tack type is best)
Sponges
Stencils with interesting background textures
Rubber stamps, including small letter stamps
Rubber stamping ink – black and assorted colors
Heat tool (optional)
Clean scrap paper
Glue stick
Small hole punch
Eyelets
Eyelet setter
Hammer

Instructions

  1. Draw an egg shape 1 3/4″ tall on the back of decorative paper. If you have a die cut, punch or stencil that is around that size you can use that. Cut out egg. If you need inspiration for color schemes, scroll down to the bottom of this article for more samples.
  2. Cut some thin strips out of a contrasting paper and glue them on the front of the egg. Trim the stripes around the edge of the egg shape with scissors.
  3. Cut out a piece of paper 2 1/4 x 2 1/4″ for a background to the egg. Round the corners with a corner rounder. Stamp a textural stamp on part of of the square. In my sample I used a stamp from 7gypsies. Make sure the ink is dry, use a heat tool if necessary to speed it up. Glue the egg onto the square.
  4. Cut an 8 1/2″ x 4 1/4″ inch piece from cardstock for the body of the card. Score down the middle and fold in half.
  5. On the front of the card, sponge some rubber stamping ink in complementary colors through some interesting background stencils. For my samples I used stencils from The Crafters Workshop. Hold the stencil and card in place with masking tape on your work surface if necessary while working.
  6. When ink is dry, stamp a textural rubber stamp along the top and bottom edges in a complementary color of your choice. In my sample I used a stamp from 7gypsies.
  7. Glue the square with the egg on it to the middle of the front of the card.
  8. Stamp two large brackets on either side of the square in black. I used stamps from the set “Memory Craft Helpers” from Carolyn’s Stamp Store.
  9. Cut two strips of paper 3/8″ x 4.25″. Using black ink stamp the word “Happy” in the center of one and “Easter” on the other. I used a stamp set with interchangeable letters to form the words. Randomly stamp a design in black here and there on one or both of the strips. For my samples I used a stamp from 7gypsies that looks like ledger paper. Glue the two strips in place above and below the square with the egg on it.
  10. Punch four holes in the ends of the paper strips and insert an complementary color eyelet in each. Set the eyelets.
  11. You’re done! If you want to make a matching envelope for the card, the free downloadable template “Square Envelope Template” will fit.
Easter cards in a variety of color schemes
Easter cards in a variety of color schemes

Biodegradable Easter Basket Tutorial

Biodegradeable Easter Basket
Biodegradable Easter Basket

Would you like to make an Easter basket that you can cut apart and bury in the garden when you’re done with it? If growing conditions are right you might even be able to grow some wildflowers!

Tools and Supplies
Biodegradable Easter Basket Template
Laminating sheets (optional)
Scissors
Pencil
Cardstock
Folding tool
Masking tape
Plantable seed paper
Rubber stamps
Rubber stamping ink
Clean scrap paper
Yes Paste
Piece of cut-up credit card
Stiff, short-bristled paintbrush (can be an old one – it’s for spreading glue)
4 clothespins or clips
Small hole punch
Raffia
Gift basket shred

Make the Template

  1. Download and print out the Biodegradable Easter Basket template.
  2. Laminate the parts for durability if desired, and cut out.

Make the Basket

  1. Trace the piece labeled “cardstock piece” on cardstock, and cut out. Make folds where indicated.
  2. Cut a 3″ x 4″ piece from clean scrap paper to use as a mask. Make a loop from masking tape and use it to temporarily tack down the mask piece to what will be the bottom of the basket.
  3. Rubber stamp the basket sides.
  4. Remove mask, and fold up the sides. Apply Yes Paste to tabs and press to the insides of the basket. Hold tabs with clothespins or clips until the glue dries.
  5. Trace the piece labeled “seed paper piece” onto a piece of plantable paper. Fold at the base of the basket. At the top of the flaps, fold in the opposite direction to make a liner.
  6. Spread Yes Paste onto the inside bottom of the basket, and press liner into the bottom.
  7. Spread Yes Paste onto underside of flaps, and press into place on the outside of the basket.
  8. Cut out a piece of cardstock or seed paper that is 1″ x 8.5″. If using cardstock, stamp it with the same color you used on the bottom of the basket.
  9. Cut out a piece of contrasting color seed paper that is .5″ x 8.5″. Glue this strip down the center of the 1″ wide strip to make your handle piece.
  10. With a small hole punch, make holes in lower part of basket and handle piece where indicated on the template.
  11. Line up holes and glue handle to basket. Hold in place with clips if necessary.
  12. Take egg tag template and place on back of seed paper. Trace around with pencil and cut out. Punch two holes in egg where indicated on the template. Fold in half.
  13. Thread raffia through 1/2 of the basket starting at the outside by one of the handles. Leave some trailing ends of raffia. Take another piece of raffia and thread the other half of the basket. Run one of the raffia pieces through the egg shaped tag. Tie ends of raffia together in a bow at the outside of the basket where the handles connect.
  14. Fill with compostable gift basket shred and goodies, and you’re done! After you’re done with the basket, if you want to you can bury it in your garden and if growing conditions are right you might get some new wildflower plants from the seed paper!

Make a Biodegradeable Easter Basket! Class on March 19, 2016

Biodegradeable Easter Basket
Biodegradeable Easter Basket

Are you interested in celebrating holidays in a more eco-friendly manner? I hope you can join me for my next class at my new Studio! Learn rubber stamping and other paper craft techniques as we make Biodegradeable Easter Baskets. We will use plantable seed paper and other compostable materials to make Easter baskets that you can bury in the garden after use! If growing conditions are right you may be able to grow some flowers too! Supplies are included in the class price.

I will have paper, cardstock, seed paper, templates, rubber stamps, ink, stamp pads, paper cutters, stamp mounting blocks, tape, glue and other tools and supplies available for you to use during the class. If you have any of the following tools or supplies, it would be helpful to bring them – there will be less wait to use tools if participants bring some – but it’s not a requirement. If you bring tools please mark them to indicate ownership.

Optional tool and supply list:
Clean scrap paper
Bone folder
Metal ruler
Pencil
Eraser
Rubber stamps
Stamping ink pads and re-inkers
Acrylic stamp mounting blocks
Double-sided tape
Paper cutter
Small hole punch
Scissors
Glue stick
Masking tape

If you have any questions about the class please feel free to contact me.

Class: Biodegradeable Easter Basket
Date: March 19, 2016
Time: 1-4 pm
Location: Studio:art, 7403 Manchester Road, Maplewood MO, 63143
Cost: $17 if paid in advance, $25 day of class
Signup form: www.carolynsstampstore.com/catalog/class_signup.php

If you choose to pay ahead of time to get the discount for pre-paying, I will send you a PayPal invoice via email. Alternately if you prefer to pay by Square I can take your information over the phone. Credit card processing at the studio will be with Square. Beginners are welcome. Children under 18 must be enrolled with a parent as I think parents are best able to judge their child’s ability level and what tools they should be allowed to use.

Supplies for the class are included in the class price. I will have some paper crafting supplies available for purchase the day of the class in case you see anything you want to add to your stash but you will not need to purchase anything additional to make the class project.

Upcoming Class with Carolyn on March 5, 2016: St. Patrick’s Day Cards

I hope you can join me for my next class at my new Studio! Learn rubber stamping and other paper craft techniques as we make St. Patrick’s Day cards. Participants will be provided with enough paper and cardstock to make at least two cards, two different card sketches and written instructions to take home.

St. Patrick's Day Card with paper flower embellishments
St. Patrick’s Day Card with paper flower embellishments

I will have paper, cardstock, templates, rubber stamps, punches, decorative scissors, ink, stamp pads, paper cutters, stamp mounting blocks, tape, glue sticks, tracing paper, embellishments and other tools and supplies available for you to use during the class. If you have any of the following tools or supplies, it would be helpful to bring them – there will be less wait to use tools if participants bring some – but it’s not a requirement. If you bring tools please mark them to indicate ownership.

Optional tool and supply list:
Clean scrap paper
Bone folder
Metal ruler
Craft knife and blades (X-Acto or something similar)
Cutting mat
Pencil
Eraser
Rubber stamps (St. Patrick’s Day or Celtic themes if you have any – spirals are good too)
Stamping ink pads and re-inkers in the following colors: Dark brown, shades of green
Acrylic stamp mounting blocks
Double-sided tape
Paper cutter
Awl or needle tool
Small hole punch
Scissors
Decorative scissors
Glue stick
Masking tape

If you have any questions about the class please feel free to contact me.

Class: St. Patrick’s Day Cards
Date: March 5, 2016
Time: 1-4 pm
Location: 7403 Manchester Road, Maplewood MO, 63143
Cost: $17 if paid in advance, $25 day of class
Signup form: www.carolynsstampstore.com/catalog/class_signup.php

If you choose to pay ahead of time to get the discount for pre-paying, I will send you a PayPal invoice via email. Alternately if you prefer to pay by Square I can take your information over the phone. Credit card processing at the studio will be with Square. Beginner stampers are welcome. Children under 18 must be enrolled with a parent as I think parents are best able to judge their child’s ability level and what tools they should be allowed to use.

St. Patrick's Day Card with collage
St. Patrick’s Day Card with collage

Supplies for the class are included in the class price. I will have some paper crafting supplies available for purchase the day of the class in case you see anything you want to add to your stash but you will not need to purchase anything additional to make the class project.

Upcoming Class with Carolyn on February 6, 2016: Valentine Cards

Upcoming Class with Carolyn on February 6: Valentine Cards
Upcoming Class with Carolyn on February 6: Valentine Cards

I hope you can join me for my first class at my new Studio! Learn rubber stamping and other paper craft techniques as we make Valentine cards. Participants will be provided with enough paper and cardstock to make four cards, four different card sketches and written instructions to take home. I’m not sure if we will have time to go through all four cards step-by step as a group, but once you know the techniques for the first card you will be able to complete the other cards on your own if you want to.

I will have paper, cardstock, templates, rubber stamps, punches, decorative scissors, ink, stamp pads, paper cutters, markers, stamp mounting blocks, tape, glue sticks, colored pencils and other tools and supplies available for you to use during the class. If you have any of the following tools or supplies, it would be helpful to bring them – there will be less wait to use tools if participants bring some – but it’s not a requirement. If you bring tools please mark them to indicate ownership.

Optional tool and supply list:
Clean scrap paper
Bone folder
Metal ruler
Craft knife (X-Acto or something similar)
Cutting mat
Scoring tool
Pencil
Eraser
Rubber stamps (Valentine themed, postal themed, alphabet stamps)
Stamping ink pads and re-inkers in the following colors: Black, dark brown, rust brown, red, lt. ochre, hot pink, lt. gray, lt. tan
Acrylic stamp mounting blocks
Double-sided tape
Paper cutter
Heart shaped punches
Standard hole punch
Scissors
Decorative scissors with postage stamp perforation pattern or deckle edge pattern
Glue stick
Masking tape
Unused white plastic eraser with flat sides (like Magic Rub)

If you have any questions about the class please feel free to contact me.

Class: Valentine Cards
Date: February 6, 2016
Time: 1-4 pm
Location: 7403 Manchester Road, Maplewood MO, 63143
Cost: $17 if paid in advance, $25 day of class
Signup form: www.carolynsstampstore.com/catalog/class_signup.php

Four of the eight available spaces are filled, so don’t wait too long to reserve a spot if you are interested! If you choose to pay ahead of time to get the discount for pre-paying, I will send you a PayPal invoice via email. Beginner stampers are welcome. Children under 18 must be enrolled with a parent as I think parents are best able to judge their child’s ability level and what tools they should be allowed to use.

Supplies for the class are included in the class price. I will have some paper crafting supplies available for purchase the day of the class in case you see anything you want to add to your stash but you will not need to purchase anything additional to make the class project.

Valentine Card by Carolyn Hasenfratz


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Christmas Journaling and Icebreaking Activity Cards

The front sides of some of the Christmas journaling cards.
The front sides of some of the Christmas journaling cards.

A few weeks ago I listened to a great podcast by the Scrap Gals in which guest Amy Sorensen discussed prompts for journaling about the holidays. Some of the prompts were in the form of questions and they reminded me of the activities my Mom used to like to do at Christmas parties. I was inspired to make some cards with prompt questions to use on our Christmas Day gathering and perhaps to later use as prompts if I ever decided to make Christmas journal or scrapbook. If you celebrate a different holiday you can adjust the questions and decorations to suit.

If you want to make cards like these here is what you will need:

Cardstock (plain will do since it will be covered on both sides with decorative paper)
Lined paper or journaling spots (journaling spots are small decorative pieces of paper or cardstock that are usually lined and are designed to be incorporated into a scrapbook or journal layout and written upon)
Decorative paper in holiday colors – a good opportunity to use up scraps!
Paper cutting system of choice
Glue sticks
Bone folder
Clean scrap paper
Marker or writing tool of choice
Holiday stickers
Decorative scissors
Rubber stamping ink
Small word rubber stamps
Corner rounder
Chipboard (optional)

1. My first step in this project was to decide on the size of the cards. I had a quantity of journaling spots that would work so I let those determine the size. If you want to fit your cards into a pocket page let that determine the size of your cards.

2. Cut pieces of cardstock to the size you determined.

3. Using a glue stick, glue the journaling spots or lined paper to the cardstock pieces. After gluing place a clean piece of scrap paper over each card and rub with bone folder to get a nice tight seal on the glue.

4. Glue decorative paper in holiday colors to the backs of cards and burnish. Make as simple as elaborate as you want and embellish with holiday stickers if you want to.

The back sides of the Christmas journaling cards.
The back sides of some of the Christmas journaling cards.

5. Trim the cards.

6. Cut a selection of light colored scrap papers into strips with decorative scissors. Stamp them with small words that fit the theme. I chose the words celebrate, Fiesta!, party, living, culture, spirit, living, holiday, joy and truth from four different word sets from my Carolyn’s Stamp Store collection. Set these aside to make sure the ink dries thoroughly.

7. Write prompt questions on the front of each card. For ideas I searched online for “Christmas journaling prompts” and used some of the questions I found plus I made up a few of my own. Feel free to use these or your own choices.

What are some of your favorite holiday traditions?

Do you have any New Year’s resolutions?

Is there a new holiday tradition that you would like to start?

If money was no object, what would you give to each person in your family?

What was your favorite Christmas outfit?

Are there any traditions that we’ve let go that you’d like to bring back?

What is your favorite Christmas memory?

What is your favorite holiday food?

What does the “Holiday Spirit” mean to you?

What is one of your favorite Christmas gifts?

How did you find out there was no Santa?

What are you most grateful for this season?

What are your favorite decorations?

What is your favorite holiday song?

What is your favorite Christmas book?

What is your favorite Christmas movie?

What is your fantasy Christmas dinner menu?

What is your most spiritual holiday experience?

What gift did you most enjoy giving?

What do you normally do the day after Christmas?

8. Once you’ve written on all the cards, you’ll have an idea how much room is left for embellishments. Glue on your strips of stamped paper and add other embellishments of your choice such as stickers, rub-ons, and anything else you have that you’d like to use.

9. Round off the corners with the corner rounder if you want to.

10. If you like you can make a matching box for the cards out of chipboard and decorate it accordingly.

I spent Christmas Day with my Dad, my brother and my boyfriend. This was my first Christmas with my boyfriend Ray, and while he had met my Dad and brother before I thought that if we asked each other the questions on the cards it would be a good way to get to know each other better and also be a good conversation starter. I think it worked well, I learned a lot I didn’t know and we had a great conversation. Thanks to Dad, Larry and Ray for being open minded enough to tolerate the experiment! I gave Dad a set – they make a good host/hostess gift!

These cards could be a great prompt for other holiday activities such as a daily anticipatory activity for December or a family journal or album. Use your imagination and have fun!

I’ll have one extra set of 15 cards for sale at the studio shortly, so if you want dibs on it please contact me.

Make a Shadow Box Ornament

Shadow box ornament featuring a Santa rubber stamp
Mixed-media shadow box ornament by Carolyn Hasenfratz.

The Holiday 2015 issue of RubberStampMadness is out and I want to let you know about it because my article “No Ordinary Ornament” is published within! If you want to read it check the newsstand at your favorite craft retailer or go to the RubberStampMadness web site to order a copy. My four-page article contains step by step instructions and templates which you can copy and enlarge. Here are some other highlights of the holiday issue – Current Issue.

Some of the rubber stamps I used in my samples are from other stamp companies and some are of my own design and are available in my online store, Carolyn’s Stamp Store.