Monday, October 24, 2011

And the winner is...

 I decided to go straight-up old school for the drawing because the excitement and anticipation are just so much greater when you get to draw a random slip of paper!  Way better than some online random number generator.

Anyway, without further adieu...

...the winner of the My Memories Software Giveaway is...

Catherine:  I'll be sending you the winner code.  :)

For those of you who are super-bumbed you didn't get to win this giveaway, you can still purchase the software and use the $10 off software AND a $10 off coupon for the My Memories store by using  STMMMS45229 at checkout.

Monday, October 10, 2011

My Memories Software Giveaway!!

Liz, from My Memories, contacted us to see if we wanted to do a digital scrapbooking software giveaway.  We couldn't resist!

The my memories suite software is easy to use, has great layouts to choose from, and various free elements to get your creative juices flowing.  The software isn't limited to just scrapbooking either.  You can create cards, videos, and photo books too!

So here's the deal:  My Memories would love to give one of our readers their own FREE DOWNLOAD for their my memories suite software.  And, as a special deal for all of our readers, they gave us a Share the Memories coupon code STMMMS45229 that provides a $10 discount off the purchase of the My Memories Suite Scrapbook software AND a $10 coupon for the store!  There are loads of fun scrapbooking kits and album templates choose from.  

I created the following scrapbook layout using one of the easy layout templates and some of the free elements which are included with the software.  Oh, and some wonderfully-dated photos from my high school days.  :)

I also made this Christmas Card:
So how do you win this incredible giveaway?  There are a few different ways to enter.  Choose one, or multiply your chances by completing all five!

  1.  For entry #1, go to the My Memories site and browse through their adorable paper packs and layouts.  Then, leave a comment here on our blog telling us which one(s) you love!
  2. For entry #2, follow the My Memories Blog, then leave a new comment here letting us know you're their newest follower.
  3. For entry #3, follow us here at This & That Creative and leave a comment letting us know you're our newest follower!  Already a follower?  No worries, just let us know in a comment.
  4. For entry #4, "like" My Memories on Facebook and let us know in another comment!
  5. And finally, for entry #5, "like" This & That Creative on Facebook.  Don't forget to leave another comment.
This giveaway will end Friday, October 21, 2011, 11:59 PM MST.  All comment entries must be posted before then!  The winner will be announced the following week, so stay tuned.  Good luck!

And don't forget, even if you don't win the giveaway, you can still use the Share the Memories coupon code STMMMS45229 that provides a $10 discount off the purchase of the My Memories Suite Scrapbook software AND a $10 coupon for the store!

Friday, October 7, 2011

DIY Christmas Stockings

What's that you say?  It's not Christmastime yet?  Well, at my house we prepare for the holidays virtually year-round because then, when November and December come, we can relax and enjoy the holiday season rather than become self-loathing hermits who refuse to go out in public because of the craziness.  My shopping is finished (just waiting to be wrapped), I'll be making candies soon, but the stockings I was able to do over the summer!  I digress.  

I wanted uber-cute-personalized-trendy-not-too-christmasy Christmas stockings. Pipe dream?  NO.  First, I had to find the right "shape."  See, we're big stocking-stuffing people and I needed it to be large enough to accommodate my visions of stuffing grandeur!  So I did what any great, creative mind would do...I went rummaging through my mom's holiday decor boxes to find my childhood stocking (which is large and sturdy enough to hold an orange in the toe, followed by an apple, banana, bottle of shampoo, and other trinkets-galore).  I set the stocking on my cutest-ever chocolate and white damask fabric and cut out my stocking shape.  Remember to cut two!
 Next step was to cut the lining for my stockings.  Again, remember to cut two!  I wanted my family's stockings to be all matchy-matchy, but still personalized.  Enter:  lining fabric!  I love red and brown together, and those just happen to be the colors my living room is already decorated with, so I chose different red fabrics which showcased both my personality and my husband's.  He got baseballs, I got hibiscus flowers.  One day, when we have babies, they will have different red linings.  But don't you worry that I've already cut out four more brown damask shapes in anxious anticipation!
 Furthermore, I wanted my stockings to be heavy-duty enough to take the wear-and-tear of the ceremonial stuffing-hanging-all-around-holiday-merriment, so between my damask and red lining, I also cut a piece of quilt batting.  I stacked my pieces accordingly to get ready for the sewing.
Because I was planning on binding the stockings with personalized bias tape, there was no reason to sew the pieces right-sides-together.  Easy, eh?  Therefore, I just serged the exterior fabric/batting/lining pieces together.  It was pretty slick and much quicker than having to turn them afterward.
Next came the bias tape adventure.  I had never made my own before, but it turned out to be MUCH easier than I expected!  I used the same lining fabric and created this tutorial (posted earlier) if you're interested.  If not, any ol' bias tape will do!

After attaching the front and back of the stockings together using the bias tape, it was time to work on the minky cuff!  That's right, minky.  See?  You know you love these stockings.  I used the heaviest interfacing I could find to put inside the minky.  Seriously, this stuff was like cardboard.  It wreaked havoc on numerous machine needles, but it definitely keeps the shape nicely!  I just measured the stocking opening, doubled its length (for the front and back), and then left a 1/2" seam allowance.  I cut the interfacing and then wrapped it in the minky.

 I serged the two ends together, and then inserted a hangy loop (extremely technical term).  Hint:  If you insert the loop the way I did, it make the stocking hang at a lovely angle.
Sew up the loop edge and pin the minkly closed (nice and tight) around the interfacing.

 Then, slide the cuff over the stocking opening and match pined edge to the opening.  Sew around the edge to attach the cuff to the stocking and...voila!...

 ...You have a broken needle...A LOT of broken needles actually!  I had to include this photo purely because I've broken plenty of needles in my day and have never seen one bend in such a fashion before snapping.  Amazing.
 Anyway, what you REALLY have (besides broken needles) are uber-cute-personalized-trendy-not-too-christmasy Christmas stockings.  I added some layers of grosgrain ribbon and little floral button embellishments.
 But wait!  There's more!  I also found these  silver monogram pins which made them even MORE personal!  I pretty much love how they turned out.  Now go make your own.  You know you want to.  Get it done before the holiday season so you can enjoy that time of year rather than stress it!
Note the cute, personalized bias tape?


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