Mason Jar Pincushion


For Christmas this year, I made my future daughter-in-law a mason jar pincushion to go with her new sewing machine. The idea originally came from Pinterest, but when I tried to follow those directions, it failed. So I ripped it apart and started fresh with my own way of doing things …


I found a circle die that was about the same size as the lid and cut out two thin chipboard pieces from it. (I actually used the thin piece of chipboard that was in the fat quarter of fabric I bought. You do not want it to be too thick because then the jar will not close properly — that was the problem I had the first time. I also neglected to use the jar lid this time around in order to make it thinner.)


Then I used a circle die that was about 1/4″ larger all the way around than the lid. By using it with the Sizzix Precision Base Plate, I was able to cut out the fabric easily with it. (If you have a Sizzix machine and do not have this plate, you need it!)


Next, I placed one of the chipboard circles in the center of the fabric circle and used Elizabeth Craft Designs’ Transparent Double-Sided Tape to adhere it. (Scor-Tape or Red Line Tape would also work. The initial attempt used a hot-glue gun, but it was messy and thick and lumpy, so I opted for a strong tape the second time around.)

Then, I added strips of tape all along the chipboard circle and folded and pressed the fabric over the tape, leaving a few inches for stuffing. I added a bit of stuffing, and then sealed off that final part.

I added the second circle on top to cover all of the edges and give it a clean, finished look. Since my chipboard was white, I left it plain, but you could paint the circle first, if you liked.


Finally, I filled the jar with ribbons, fibers and lace (but you could fill with buttons, pins, candy or anything you wanted). Then I put the jar’s ring over the little cushion I made, carefully pulling all of the stuffed area through the center of the hole, and then screwed it on top. It was a tight enough fit that I didn’t feel adhesive on the ring was necessary.

I love how it turned out … what do you think?!

Paper Tile Storage

Paper Tiles are pieces of cardstock perfectly cut to fit Mosaic Moments pages.

008They come in a package with 4 8.5×11 sheets of tiles that you just punch apart. They are quick and easy to use and I love them.

ptgrapefruitbliss_thumbnailThe problem comes when you try to put a partial sheet back into the package. Sometimes it works, but most of the time the border sticks and tiles crinkle and it turns into a huge mess.

Since I use Paper Tiles when I teach Mosaic Moments classes, my issue with them seems even bigger. But I have finally created a system that stores them, makes them easy to grab and is user friendly. (I’ve tested it and it works well!)


I punched out all of my Paper Tiles and placed them in storage bags (I used freezer bags since they are stronger). I wrote the color on the bag, so I can remember them (this is vital when you post things on a blog!)

011Then I used my Crop-A-Dile to punch holes in each corner of the bag.


And attached it with a binder ring.

It now hangs on the side of my desk so I can grab them when I need to use them or when I am off to a class!


Storing It All

Storage is an important topic when dealing with paper-crafting supplies.

For me, it is usually the frustration of not being able to find something that leads to a storage solution. Take yesterday, for example, I was looking for Globecraft & Piccolo Real Rust Embossing Powder (one of my favorite colors). I keep them all in an Art Bin “tackle box” storage container so I can transport them easily for classes. The problem comes when I need a certain color and all I can see is a sea of black-lidded jars.

004After pulling out about six bottles, my frustration reached the point of no return and I decided I was going to label the jars right then and there. I shoved my project aside, pulled out all of the jars and grabbed some white cardstock and a 1″ punch.

I punched out a bunch of circles, wrote the color name on top and then stuck them through my Xyron machine.

005I stuck the labels to the top of the jars and now I can find what I am looking for quickly and easily!

006Ah, peace …

This, by the way, is the project I was working on

chicken2_Candy_spiegelClick here for a better look and directions on how to make it!





A Storage Find

One of my favorite blogs is Vicki Chrisman’s This Art That Makes Me Happy.

Vicki has a wonderful vintage, scrappy chic style that I adore. I began following her when I discovered she was the designer of an Accu-Cut die that I fell in love with and I have been following her ever since.

In addition to her creations, Vicki often shares her flea market finds and how she alters, displays or uses them. Since there aren’t many flea markets in my neck of the woods, I enjoy hearing about her adventures and seeing the treasures she discovers.

So, inspired by Vicki, I have started searching for my own treasures at our local Goodwill store and a couple of resale and antique shops. Most of the time, I leave without finding anything (which is OK because the hunt is part of the fun and it makes my husband happy when I don’t spend any money), but sometimes I find awesome storage pieces for my studio.

A few weeks ago, I discovered this old canning jar. I fell in love with the lid and knew it would be perfect for the hardware I recently collected. Jars are pretty easy to find, so I’m sure it will have companions before long. In fact, there are a pair at the antique store that I have my eye on …

Yesterday, I found the most adorable little black metal bucket. I love that it is rectangular and that the sides are straight (unlike baskets that are usually larger on the top than on the bottom.) I thought it would be perfect for my Tim Holtz dies, so I brought it home.

It holds my dies perfectly — with space for a few more. My previous die storage was awkward and traveling with it was difficult. But with this, I can just grab the handle and go!

My husband thinks it might be an old minnow box that someone painted. I would like to know so I can search for another, but in the meantime, I am loving my little black box.

My Scrapbook Room

I love to look at other’s scrapbook rooms. It’s fun to see how people decorate, store products, etc.

I have been asked to share mine, but since it is ALWAYS messy because I am always in the middle of multiple projects, have to unpack from a crop or bought new stuff and then threw it in my room, taking photos isn’t easy.

On this day, I decided it was clean enough and photographed it …

Welcome to my room …

It’s a small room — about 10×12 — but it has everything I need — including two large windows to let in the sunlight. (click on the photos to see a larger version)

It’s put together with repurposed and second-hand stuff — the armoire was part of my son’s bedroom furniture; the desk was purchased when a scrapbook store went out of business; the computer desk was put in here when my husband got a different one …

The animals on top of the TV are some of my favorites … I never have outgrown dolls and stuffed animals! The teddy is dressed in a track outfit. He was bought to remind me of my son. The moose I bought on my honeymoon and then proceeded to take photos of him visiting all over the UP!

This little shelf came with my house. It fits perfect above the window and holds my Tim Holtz dies.

I hung a shelf by 3M to hold my Robin’s Nest Dew Drops. I like the way they look and I use them all the time, so it works better to keep them in view.

The Kaiser binders hold my larger thin metal dies by QuicKutz and Dies Direct. I covered the inside with QuicKutz magnetic adhesive sheets to hold some dies. The 4×4″ dies fit perfectly in the zipper holders that KaiserCraft rub-ons come in. I love the system since it is easy to find exactly what I want.

My cling/acrylic stamps, catalogs and idea books are also stored here.

What used to be a rack for CDs is the shelf I keep my buttons, flowers and other embellishments on.

My Big Shot, Cricut, photos waiting to be scrapped, Copic markers (obviously I don’t have it all!) and other stuff all lives on the desk.

The basket is where I put stuff that I don’t feel like putting away or don’t know where to put until I use it. It’s messy, but it works for me.

The white shelf was here when we bought the house and seems to be permanently attached, so I just work around it.

The closet doesn’t open all the way, but the door holds my punches, extra adhesives and other stuff …

I bought this wooden cabinet at a craft show years ago. It holds my wood mounted stamps — well, at least the ones I don’t leave out to enjoy looking at!

I’ve had this little shelf for a long time, too. I got it for about a dollar on clearance. I covered the red drawers with paper and took the bottom three drawers out to hold some of my ink pads. I keep bottle caps, extra screw posts, rings, extra blades, staples and other “spare parts” in the drawers.

This is my favorite storage container. It’s a spice rack that mounts to the wall. I covered the jar lids with the color of the brads that I keep inside.

The KaiserCraft box I covered with Tim Holtz paper and a Ranger Paint Dabber sits prominently where I can enjoy it. It holds my Texture Fades Embossing Plates, Adirondack Color Washes and a few dies. I haven’t filled the drawers yet.

Also in this photo, although you can only see an edge, is my pink bag. I keep the tools I use all of the time — rulers, scissors, journaling pen, adhesive, piercing tool, knife, stapler, etc., in this bag. It’s easy to grab and go for a class or crop, too.

I have storage under my desk on both sides. This one holds paper and stuff to scrapbook (I have one for each kid, one for Christmas, etc.). The one of the other side of my chair holds tools, templates, stamp blocks, adhesives and other things I use all of the time.

My Ranger Craft Mat and heat gun stay on top, since I use them on almost every project.

I even stash stuff on top of the armoire!

Inside the armoire, I store cardstock, papers from my favorite companies, specialty papers, stickers/die cuts, page protectors, etc. My glitter and embossing powders are in the tackle box. Paints and reinkers are in the container in front. There is room for a shelf up top. I’ve been waiting for about 10 years for someone to make me one.

And, finally, my scrapbook companion. She thinks my room is her room, too. She gets mad every time my husband comes in the room and she sleeps in my chair every day. Often times when I get up, she’ll cry at me and get me to follow and she’ll take me from bedroom (at one end of the house) to my room (at the other end of the house). She thinks it is my job to crop! Someday, Winnie, someday!And, just to be fair …

You should never leave an empty Karen Foster bag laying around … you never who you might find inside!

I hope you enjoyed this peek into my scrapbook room.

Storage options

Compared to the studio photos I see online and in the magazines, I do not have an over abundance of scrapbook supplies.

Yes, I have a lot, but I don’t have it all — not even close. ┬áBut, my room is full. And, whenever I go to a crop, I feel like I am moving in and my truck is packed with supplies.

I do not have a lot of paper or stickers. It’s the ink, paint and other things that take up all of the space. So, I started looking for alternative storage solutions that would take up less space (and weigh less) while still being easy to access.

This is what I came up with ….

The case in the back holds all of my embossing powders, glitter, flock, Perfect Pearls, etc. It is a recycled fishing tackle sort of box I got from my husband.

The front case holds all of my paints and reinkers. It is slightly bigger than a shoe box and was about $3 at Wal-Mart.

And, my favorite new case is the tackle box in front. For about $15 at Wal-Mart, it holds all of my brads, buttons, charms, pins, hinges and other embellishments. Best of all, it still has space to add more!

These three new boxes have replaced quite a stack of stuff in my room ….

From seven containers and a spice rack down to three boxes is pretty darn impressive!

Distress Ink Holder

This idea was not mine … I “stole” it from a friend and class instructor. But, I think it is so wonderful, I wanted to share it.

It is made with a plastic storage container by Plano. (Look for them in the sporting goods department … they are often near the tackle boxes). I put the dividers in to fit my inks.

I had my husband glue two wooden blocks at the bottom for legs, since it will fall over otherwise. He also attached a handle to the top … mine is from my Cricut box, but you could use one from laundry detergent.

Then, I printed the label list of Distress Inks off of the Ranger website and colored them with my Distress Inks before attaching them.

I don’t have all of the inks, so I had plenty of room to include my Ranger Archival Inks at the top, which is perfect, since I often use them together.

This solution may not be fancy, but I believe it cost about $7, including the labels!

Storage Tips — Ribbon & Fibers

Aside from the hobby itself, scrapbookers share one huge problem — how do you store it?

There was a time when I fit most of what I owned in a bag or two that traveled from location to location.

Then I discovered rubber stamps, ribbon, brads, chipboard, ink, paint and other “supplies.” They started coming in bigger packages and I found myself only using a portion of whatever it was on a project, which left a lot for storage.

I have been scrapbooking for about 15 years. Over that time I have witnessed many trends come and go and each one has had its own unique storage issues. Needless to say, I have wasted a lot of money on storage items. Some were perfect for travel, but didn’t work at home. Others took too long to open and close or too much space or just didn’t work the way I thought they would.

Whether you are new to scrapbooking or have been around a while, you can always learn from another’s storage systems. Every time I find a magazine or blog with storage ideas, I always pay close attention. I still have products that I have yet to find the perfect way to store. But, I have others that I have been using for some time that I think work pretty well.

Of course, no solution is right for everyone. Just like there is no right or wrong way to scrapbook, there is no right or wrong way to store things. It all depends on the space you have, the products you use most often, the way you crop and the way you think. For instance, some products I forget all about unless I have them in view. Others I keep out because I like the way they look. And, there are some that can be out of sight, but never out of mind and I don’t mind moving mountains to find them when I need them.

Anyhow, I thought I would share a few of my success stories, starting with ribbon and fibers.

I generally buy ribbon by the yard, so storing it in canning jars is a great solution. I love how it looks on the shelf, it’s easy to access, I can see what I have and it costs less than $20!

I also love buying the mini spools of American Crafts ribbon. They sell for about $1 a spool and always have coordinating colors and patterns. I like looking at them, so I keep them in a Kaiser Craft storage bin I made. But, once open, the ribbon doesn’t stay nicely attached to the spool and it seems silly to unspool it, rewrap it and put it in a jar.

My solution? Removeable Glue Dots! Place one at the end of the cut ribbon and attach it. It easily peels off with no residue. I suppose it would work if you keep your ribbon on a card, too.

I keep my fibers on embroidery/cross-stitch cards. Many of them are leftovers from a previous hobby. Others were purchased when such things were available and placed on cards made by Cropper Hopper. I keep them all in a box by Cropper Hopper. It has space on the reverse side for other items and has a handle, which makes it easy to carry to crops.