Friday, October 31, 2014

Fab Five Friday Happy Halloween!

Welcome to Fab Five Friday. For those of you that are new to this blog, every Friday I showcase five blogs, websites or posts that I think you will enjoy. I hope you are having a Happy Halloween!

Before we get started, please click here to enter my Silhouette Portrait tote giveaway.


Be sure to check out Let’s Eat Grandpa to see more photos of this elegant luminary created using the new Cricut Explore. Beautiful!


A special thanks to my sister for sharing this stunning post with me. Check out Such a Pretty Mess for a tutorial on this gorgeous shabby chic wall art. Wow!!


If you need a last minute treat for tonight, be sure to check out how to make this very easy treat! Thanks Dreyer’s Ice Cream for this great last minute idea.


And check this out just in case you need one more treat for tonight! For more inspiration click here to see Dreyer’s Pinterest page.


I love my morning lattes and I just know I would making spiced latte hand soap. Check out A Beautiful Mess for a step by step tutorial. These would be perfect for Christmas gifts.


A special thanks to Hobby Lobby for their free Christmas idea book. I love their novel approach to an advent calendar and their star wreath!

Hope you are having a Spooktacular Friday!

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Silhouette Portrait Promotion and Silhouette Portrait Tote Giveaway!

Just a reminder that the Silhouette Sale is still going on!




Simply click here and use promo code: BOUTIQUE at checkout to receive your savings!

The Portrait Bundle for $149.99 will include:
  • A Portrait machine, 1 pack of Printable Gold Foil, 1 pack of Printable Silver Foil, 1 pack of Vellum and 1 grey dust cover.

Now for the Giveaway!


To enter to win the Silhouette Portrait tote you need to be a subscriber of my blog. To subscribe click on the subscribe box located on the top right side of my blog (if you are not there already).

Please remember to verify your email address to subscribe and to be eligible to win. Also leave a comment under this post, only one comment per person please. For additional chances to win, please help me spread the word about the giveaway. For each mention on your blog, Facebook post, or re-pin you receive an additional chance to win. Just leave an additional comment on this post that you did.

You have until midnight MDT on Tuesday November 4th to enter and the winner will be announced on Wednesday November 5th.

Have a great day!

Monday, October 27, 2014

Make it in Minutes Monday

Welcome to Make it in Minutes Monday. I thought it would be fun to feature quick and easy cards or projects that take less than 10 minutes to make, but look like you spent more time making them.


I made this card using the Bewitched Card/Invite Make it Now Project and my new Cricut Explore. This would be a perfect invitation for a girl’s night out!


I chose this project to see how the Cricut Explore performs when doing intricate cuts and it passed with flying colors. Look at the detail on the lips and eye lashes. Wow! In addition, I used a very inexpensive black card stock from my stash and it cut perfectly. I continue to be impressed with the Explore’s cutting abilities!

Have a wonderful day!

Sunday, October 26, 2014

Simply Organized Sunday

Welcome to Simply Organized Sunday…SOS for short. Every Sunday I showcase blogs, websites or posts that provide innovative approaches to organizing and designing your craft space as well as other areas in your home.


This post is part of the Where Bloggers Create 2014 series. Collage Candy's studio is  a vintage wonder.


Isn’t her map cabinet perfect? I also love the vintage suitcases and baskets.


This 5 foot tall post office cabinet makes an ideal storage place for smaller items.

Click here to learn more about this vintage craft room. It is truly remarkable!

I hope you are having a wonderful weekend.

Friday, October 24, 2014

Fab Five Friday

Welcome to Fab Five Friday. For those of you that are new to this blog, every Friday I showcase five blogs, websites or posts that I think you will enjoy.


Be sure to check out Oh Happy Day for step by step directions on how to make this spooktacular piƱata!


Dress up your pumpkins with copper leaf for a festive mantel or table top decoration. Thanks One Kings Lane for the info!



Guess what? Cricut is working on a new Apple iPad Design Space app that will allow us to do more designing on our iPad and Ken from Ken’s Kreations can tell you all about it. I am so excited and can’t wait!


Are you looking for some new fonts? If so, check out this post from I Should Be Mopping the Floor. My favorite is Blessed Day! Can you believe Thanksgiving is just around the corner?



A couple of weeks ago, I posted a video tutorial on Silhouette’s new PixScan technology and I love using it! Kelly from Finding Time to Create made this shadow box and used PixScan to cut out the elements. Click here to see her tutorial.

Have a wonderful Friday!

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Cricut Explore Print Then Cut Review


A few weeks ago I posted a review of the new Cricut Explore and today I want to discuss the new Print Then Cut feature.

I started out as a Cricut blog and I own most of the Cricut machines, including the Imagine, E2, the original Baby Bug, and the Expression. In addition, I was a design team member on Tammy Skinner’s Imagine blog and was a guest designer on Everyday Cricut. I even filmed several Cricut how to videos including some of the first Imagine videos and I was an original Cricut Circle member.

Then I purchased my Silhouette, and it was love at first cut. I loved, and yes, love is a strong word, the intricate cutting ability, the amazing and robust software, how easy it cut text weight card stock and the print and cut feature. After using the Cameo for a period of time, I became a Silhouette Blog. Now I am an affiliate with Silhouette and have the pleasure of giving away Silhouette machines to my viewers. Whew, full disclosure takes a long time to write, but I want you all to know my history and biases.

Now for the Cricut Explore Print Then Cut Review. The pros and cons are based on my personal opinion and observations only. The machine and software that best fits your needs is the machine you will want to choose. Before I get started with the actual review, I want to share a couple of examples


I used the Summer Gift Tags Make It Now project designed by Lia Griffith. I added glitter glue, a few pearls, and some twine and was done. I love how this turned out!


For this project, I used a tag from Holiday Gift Tags Digital Set and flattened the image. I love using the bleed and how accurate the Explore is! Super quick and super easy!

Cons:

Since Cricut Design Space loads from the cloud rather than your hard drive, the software can be slow to respond and there is a lag between loading the mat and cutting. I really appreciate the convenience of a cloud based system, but prefer the speed of the Silhouette Studio software which runs from my hard drive. I still like the fact that my Silhouette files are stored on my computer. We have a high speed internet connection, and Cricut Design Space still lags occasionally, so the problem does not appear to be at our end.

Before I tried the new Print Then Cut feature, I tried to load the Design Space software to my brand new Toshiba Windows Touchscreen 8.1 laptop equipped with 16GB of memory, 1 TB hard drive and an Intel CORE i7 processor. Unfortunately, I was not able to use Cricut Design space on my new lap top when I tried to use the latest Firefox version 32.0.3. Every time I right clicked, I received this error….“Shockwave Flash may be busy, or it may have stopped responding. You can stop the plugin now, or you can continue to see if the plugin will complete.” Options are “don’t ask me again, continue or stop plugin”. None of the options made the plugin work. It crashed regardless of the option chosen.

I made several calls to Provo Craft and their advice was to use a different browser. Design Space worked fine on my Windows 7 laptop when I used Firefox 32.0.3. After several days my husband and I were able to get Design Space to work on my brand new laptop using Internet Explorer 11. I am a huge Firefox fan, so we kept trying to get it to work with Firefox 32.0.3. We thought that we might be having a problem since we have a new Windows 8.1 touchscreen. We installed an older version of Firefox (31) and that seemed to stop Flash from crashing and allowed Design Space to work. We did not get Chrome to work.

My biggest concern with Design Space is that it relies on third party software such as Flash and Shockwave that can cause errors such as the dreaded shockwave error discussed above. My Silhouette software loaded perfectly the first time on my new 8.1 laptop.

Another con with Print Then Cut is that you can only print on an 8 ½ x 11 sheet of paper. The Cameo can print on a 12 x 12 inch sheet of paper. Rumor has it that the Explore will soon be able to use larger paper.

Also at this time you cannot use digital paper to flood fill images and then cut them. I have also heard that Provo Craft is working on this enhancement and I can’t wait. I use this feature and so wish it was available on the Explore.

I love the new Silhouette PixScan functionality and wish the Explore had this capability. Click here to see my post and video on PixScan.

Now for the Pros

The accuracy of the Print Then Cut is amazing. The fact that Provo Craft added a bleed to every image is terrific. This virtually eliminates any white showing when you do a print then cut. I love it! I can do an external bleed with the Silhouette, but I am limited to making the bleed one color. The Cricut Explore bleed follows the colors of the original design. I can also do an internal offset with my Cameo, but it does not have the same great effect as Provo Craft’ s automatic bleed function.

Also Provo Craft has made it extremely easy to turn an image into a print then cut and I love this functionality.

As a past Imagine owner, I was thrilled to receive an email granting me free access to all Imagine images! Wow great customer service!

Summary:

My favorite go-to machine still remains the Silhouette Cameo. It has all the features and robust software that I love and more. The software is wonderful and I love all the functionality. However, I also love and I mean love, the Print Then Cut feature of the Explore as well as how easy it is to use and how accurate it is.

As you know from my previous review of the Explore I consider myself extremely fortunate to own a Silhouette Cameo and the Cricut Explore; and I will continue to post projects using them both.

Monday, October 20, 2014

Make it in Minutes Monday

Welcome to Make it in Minutes Monday. I thought it would be fun to feature quick and easy cards or projects that take less than 10 minutes to make, but look like you spent more time making them.


I made this card using the new Anna Griffin Christmas Kitsch Cartridge. I am loving my new Explore machine and could not wait to share this new cartridge.



My Explore cut the heavy glitter paper like it was butter. I added a sentiment from Anna Griffin and was done. Stay tuned for a Halloween card I made using the Explore. The card was so intricate, but the Explore cut it perfectly.
Click here to check out the new Christmas Kitsch cartridge from Anna Griffin. This is a must have!

Have a wonderful day!

Sunday, October 19, 2014

Simply Organized Sunday

Welcome to Simply Organized Sunday…SOS for short. Every Sunday I showcase blogs, websites or posts that provide innovative approaches to organizing and designing your craft space as well as other areas in your home.


This incredible office/craft room from Faded Charm looks so inviting.


The vintage typewriter is a perfect touch.


Her desk is both functional and beautiful. Click here to see more photos and a stunning blog.

I hope you are having a wonderful weekend.

Friday, October 17, 2014

Fab Five Friday

Welcome to Fab Five Friday. For those of you that are new to this blog, every Friday I showcase five blogs, websites or posts that I think you will enjoy.


It is here, the new Silhouette Cameo! Click here to learn more about this machine and to enter to win one.

For more details on how to make these fun pumpkins, click here. Thanks DIY Show Off for this great post!


A special thanks to Maritza Lisa for this freebie. She even included a free Silhouette Studio 3 file.


I recently discovered the Grey Luster Girl website and I am so happy I did! Click here to see more close-up photos of her spooky Halloween mantel.

If you own a cutting machine and are looking for wonderful SVG files, be sure to visit SVG Cuts. And for a special treat click here to download hundreds of free files.

Have a wonderful Friday!

Linda Kaiser

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Silhouette Portrait Promotion and Winner of the Silhouette Portrait




Simply click here and use promo code: BOUTIQUE at checkout to receive your savings!

The Portrait Bundle for $149.99 will include:
  • A Portrait machine, 1 pack of Printable Gold Foil, 1 pack of Printable Silver Foil, 1 pack of Vellum and 1 grey dust cover.
I just received a Silhouette Portrait and I am loving it. In fact, I loved it so much that I made the video below.



Now for the big announcement….

The winner of the Silhouette Portrait is:

Mary Stuart said...
Oh my goodness, Linda, Silhouette Portrait is an awesome prize!
Love your blog! Thank you for the opportunity to win such a fabulous prize.
Congrats Mary! Please email your address and contact information to me at lkaisermt@gmail.com so we can send you this marvelous machine. A very special thanks to Silhouette for sponsoring this incredible giveaway!

Have a great week and click here and use promo code: BOUTIQUE at checkout to receive your savings!

Stay tuned for another fun giveaway later this week! You will love it!






Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Lori Whitlock Creative Team October Blog Hop


Hello and welcome to the Lori Whitlock Creative Team August Blog Hop! You should be arriving from Cathy’s blog or you can start from the beginning of the hop at Lori Whitlock’s blog. Before we get started with the blog hop, please click here to win a free Silhouette Portrait machine.


I made these adorable three dimensional stickers using Lori’s Layered Halloween Embellishments 2 Collection.


I cut my stickers out of glitter paper from DCWV using my Silhouette Cameo. When cutting glitter paper on my Cameo, I set my blade to eight and do a double cut. In addition, I keep a blade just for cutting glitter paper. It cuts like butter. These stickers are so easy to make and versatile. You could add them to cards, gift boxes, bags or use them for Halloween treats. All I did was add 3 D foam squares to each layer and was done.


In honor of today’s hop Lori is giving everyone a free SVG download on her blog.


Lori is also offering 30% off of all shapes and fonts in her shop through Sunday October 19th when you use the code “SPOOKY”. Be sure to visit her shop to see all the new goodies she has created!


There is also a 30% off sale at Snap Click Supply today only!

And please don’t forget to enter my free Silhouette Portrait giveaway by clicking here.

I hope you will check out all the other exciting projects at my fellow teammate’s blogs and leave them some love. Simply Tya is your next stop in the hop.

Have fun!

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