i’m back…

HI there! I know it’s been a LONG time since I posted anything, and you may have forgotten I’m here. I hope not! My life became so busy that I did not have any time to blog. (I’ve fixed that part.) Here is my first post in what I hope will be a regular series from now on. I’m still doing crafts, but my interests have expanded to include word art.

Here is a free download for you to try: a 4th of July word art poster. I designed it to use 8 1/2″ by 11″ paper because that is what most people are able to print. The poster uses music and songs that are associated with 4th of July. You can download a PDF of the poster by clicking on the title below.

I hope you have a wonderful 4th! I’ll be spending the holiday on the National Mall, singing in “A Capitol Fourth” for PBS. Please tune in and share the holiday with us!

4th of July Subway Art by Annie V24th of July Subway Art by Annie V2

one more time with feeling….

I just got an email that Scrapbook News and Reviews will publish another one of my card designs in this month’s issue. This came at just the right time.  Work has been especially challenging and I needed a creative validation.

Please go to their site and see what they chose.

I guess I should get more designs up here, too, while I’m thinking about it.  First, I need to make the actual cards so I know the designs cut well.

Some things come at just the right time.

i’m not late…really

Here is the first in a short series of last-minute Christmas cards designs. I always get motivated right before the big day and here is one result:

Sleigh ride, anyone?

PAPERS: Bazzill Metallic card stock in Silver (framed bell.)  This was not the mirror card stock I was hoping for, but it has a nice soft shine and looks like matte silver (or could pass for pewter with the right background.) It cuts beautifully so this might lead me to buy more paper from them. The red mat is American Crafts Specialty Foil card stock.  I never get tired of AC foil and love the texture.  This photo looks like it is a bit distressed but is not in reality. The vibrant emerald-green mat is from Colorbök (available at Target.)  I’ve used a few papers from this company lately and really like their colors. As usual, I used Staples 110 lb. card stock for my card base, but I chose gray this time to coordinate with the muted silver of the top layer.

Would you like the svg file for the framed jingle bell?  Please help yourself right HERE.

I just thought of a wonderful use for this design: thank you cards.  You should be able to re-size this panel to fit any square card you like.  See, I’m not late.

I’m going to the Mall now to do some last-minute shopping.  Wish me luck with the crowds.

i have a little dreidel

I couldn’t resist making one more group of Chanukah cards. Here is the first one.

This card was very difficult to photograph well because of the high shine of the gold mirror card, but I love the look.

MATERIALS: Best Occasions Metallic card stock (gold), American Crafts Specialty Foil card stock (turquoise textured mat), American Crafts Glitter card stock (turquoise glitter mat).

Here is the other version of this card:

This one is a bit easier to see because the contrast is greater.

MATERIALS: Best Occasions Metallic card stock (gold), DCWV glitter card stock (cream mat, light green mat).

Both cards have a card base of Staples 110 lb. card stock (white or cream colored.)  You can’t beat the price on this stuff and it cuts and creases very well.  And of course, I used Scor-Tape to adhere the layers.

Would you like the svg files for these?  Please click HERE for the single dreidel version and HERE for the panel with the dreidel trio.

For those of you who are celebrating Chanukah, may your candles burn brightly in the circle of your family.

it’s Christmas time again

I’ve been working on a set of Christmas cards and wanted to show you what I came up with.  Here is the first one.

Can you see the reflection in the front of the card?

My one problem with these is that I can’t seem to keep the mirror card stock completely clean and undamaged. Does anyone have any ideas about this?

If anyone knows where to buy more mirror card stock (especially in silver), I’d be eternally grateful. Wal-Mart doesn’t stock this any longer.

Would you like the free svg files for these cards?  Please CLICK HERE.

Just to give you a peek at what’s coming, here’s a screen shot of the four cut files in SCAL 2. All four come in the same svg, and you can cut all four at once by using 6 inch square pieces of card stock in different colors. They are four-inch square panels. You can mat them on anything that suits your fancy.  I thought of using these for coasters or small framed holiday pictures to decorate your house.  I think they might make neat gifts for friends or relatives who invite you in for the holidays.

One design, four variations

Please come back and see the cards I made using the other versions of my design…and tell me how you like them!

spinning top

Several people sent me some wonderful comments about my Menorah Card (Thank you!!!) so I’ve been motivated to design a few more Chanukah cards and files for you. Here they are:

I found that this was a great way to make use of tiny scraps of card stock. The file contains the panel with dreidel cutout on one side of the mat and the embellishments on the other.  I put all four Hebrew letters in the file and you can choose how many to use.  HERE is the svg file.

Once I got the dreidel cutout part done, I thought I’d do a variation with four of them on one card. This design was inspired by the work of artist Andy Warhol.

The file contains the embellishment panels for each dreidel and all four Hebrew letters. I decided that I’d rather not use the tiny letters and just let the minimalist shapes speak for themselves.

HERE is the file if you’d like it.

If you’d rather just make the cards without the tiny embellishments, HERE is a file with two of the card panels but no embellishments.


Single Dreidel card: DCWV Shimmer Stack (blue mat with cutout), Best Occasions Prismatic Paper Pack (gold mat), American Crafts Specialty Foil Card Stock (Silver mat, Silver letter cutout), AC Foil (tiny black embellishments)

Four Dreidel card: American Crafts foil card stock (black mat), Recollections glitter card (Marine Blue mat), American Crafts foil card stock (silver mat), Best Occasions Mettallic paper (hot pink embellishments)

Anybody up for a game of Dreidel?

festival of lights

The birthday card with candles that I designed made me think of the upcoming holiday that (part of) my family will celebrate: Chanukah (or Hanukah, or Hanukkah.)  The eight-day celebration is filled with traditions that include fascinating history lessons (about the Maccabees who were freedom fighters against the Romans in the 7th century B.C.E.), delicious foods (latkes!) and fun (the Dreidel game.) The holiday commemorates a miracle that occurred many centuries ago. The story of Chanukah also symbolizes hope in the face of adversity, and that concept is timeless.

For those of you who observe Chanukah, here is my take on one of its important icons: a menorah. The modern Hebrew word for this is Chanukiyah. The menorah has eight candles that symbolize the eight days during which the Eternal Light in the synagogue burned when there was only enough purified oil to last one day. The ninth candle in the middle (called the Shamash) is used to light the others.  Each night, one more candle is lit, until on the last night of Chanukah, all eight candles are burning brightly.

brightly shining lights that celebrate the season

DESIGN: I did this entirely in SCAL 2, using the available shapes in the software. The more I experiment with this program, the more I want to discover what is still unknown to me. It is really a fun adventure.

MATERIALS: Top layer (American Crafts white 80 lb card stock), Blue layer (Recollections Marine Blue Glitter card stock). Silver layer (American Crafts Specialty Foil card stock), Card base (Staples 110 lb card stock, lots of Scor-Tape to secure the menorah cutout panel to the glitter mat.  If you haven’t tried Scor-Tape, I highly recommend it.  It comes in many different widths, and the 1/8″ tape is fantastic for getting into tight places (like between the candles.)

I generally belong to the “less is more” school of design, but I’m thinking of adding a small clear gem to each candle flame.  What do you think?

I’ve discovered that there are not that many Chanukah cards out there, so here is one that you can share with your loved ones.  Please CLICK HERE to download the Menorah Card Panel I designed. If you do use it, I’d love to see the results.

No matter what holiday you celebrate this season, may it be filled with joy and peace.

brotherly love

Today is my brother’s birthday. So, of course, I had to make him a card but I didn’t’ mail it yet.  (Work does tend to get in the way of life sometimes…)

Anyway, here it is:

Not enough candles, but who's counting?

I sent the photo by email with a note that said “hard copy to follow.” Please don’t laugh.  At least I remembered his birthday.

The front panel is 4 1/2 inches square and designed to take 1/4″ wide ribbon for the candles and the flames. The card stock is from American Crafts (silver and black textured foil) and Colorbok (royal blue mirror card stock.) The ribbon is from Michaels and the pink metal stud is from Joann’s.

Want to join the celebration? Please  CLICK HERE to get the birthday and candles panel. The file contains the panel as well as the extra “y’ so you can cut that piece in a different color.

making the season merry

Here is the second of this series of cards with a single word on the front.  I like this way of focusing on a single thought that has to do with the holidays.  Depending on how you view the card or where you mind chooses to go, there are unlimited ideas that can spring from that one greeting.

I’m finding the bright red foil a bit hard to photograph and I admit that I’m too lazy to get out my photo studio and lights.

The papers I used for this card are all from American Crafts (red, green and gold foil and white glitter.)  I used Pops Dots to create another layer for the tree. I couldn’t resist adding a tiny bit of bling with the royal blue star (from K&Company.)

All the pieces are contained in the svg file.  Please CLICK HERE to download it.

I’m really getting in the mood for the holidays by crafting.  It’s good for my soul.

celebrate the season

Where did the time go?

It seems like yesterday I was wondering when the temperature would drop out of the high 90s, and here it is November already.  I’ve already started rehearsals for my favorite Christmas shows and am looking forward to hearing holiday music on my I-Phone.

Before it gets any later, I thought I’d better get more Christmas cards done.  This design is an all-purpose one that could be done in a variety of color palettes for whatever holiday you and your loved ones enjoy.

The red and silver card stock comes from the American Crafts Specialty Foil line.  AC is one of my favorite craft supply companies. Their paper cuts so well, even with small details.  The wide ribbon is from Michaels and is left over from a roll I bought last year. I love all the different metallic hues running through it, like lights on a Christmas tree.

I attached the panel using (my usual) Scor-Tape, but also used a small amount of spray adhesive on the back of the letters to make sure they stayed flat on the mat.

This is the first of s series of similar designs I’m working on, so please come back and visit again soon.  I’ll have more.

If you’d like the svg “Celebrate” file, please CLICK HERE.

Let the celebrations begin!