Summer Pasta

Thanks for joining me again! Today I have a delicious summer pasta dish to share. It can be a meal or a side dish. It’s perfect for a get together or as an alternative summer meal. Prepare ahead of time and keep refrigerated or make and serve, it’s versatile. Let’s get started!

The summer months in Southern California can be long and hot so its nice to take a break from traditional cooking. Let’s start with the ingredients I use. First, I start with a rainbow rotini pasta but tortellini works great too! Next up I use fresh from the garden cucumber and tomato (cherry is a favorite but not required) if you’re not a gardener the stores are plentiful during the summer months. Don’t forget the onion and garlic if desired. Depending on who I’m serving. I may add some sliced black olives. I also use an Italian dressing (wish bone robusto or olive garden Italian is a win for me). If you’d like to make a complete meal out of this dish, you can add some protein such as chopped ham or chicken. Let’s prepare!

Boil the pasta in lightly salted water until soft but not too much, al dente is perfect. Drain and set aside. Now it’s time to chop the veggies and dice the onion and garlic.

Transfer the pasta to a large bowl. Add the veggies and lightly toss. Next up is the dressing. I add 1TB of dressing at a time, lightly tossing in-between until my desired amount is added. Cover and refrigerate or serve immediately. Top with shredded parmesan or chopped parsley as desired. TADA! You’re done. Quick, easy, filling, and refreshing!

Comment below what your favorite summer dish is. If you make this family favorite don’t forget to comment and tag #sewmuchglitter on your social media. Check out my other creative ideas@sewmuchglitter on Facebook/Instagram/Pinterest. I can’t wait to see how this dish inspires you.

See you soon!

Blending Tools

Welcome back! In my last post I said I’d be back soon with my favorite blending tools, so let’s get started!

First off, there is no right or wrong blending tool. There is a better technique but tools are a personal preference. Use what you’re comfortable with and use what gets you your most desired results. The market is overwhelmed with crafting products and I admit that I also fall prey to buying the latest and greatest.

My most preferred blending tool is a blending brush. As you can see, mine are color coordinating. Using similar colors on brushes helps with ease of use and cleaning (or lack of cleaning). The brushes give me the smoothest blends and can fade as desired. These bristles hold color well and clean off well. Their soft providing a smooth blend. I got mine on Amazon.com and they were inexpensive (under $15), not bad for repetitive use.

Next up there’s a blending tool with foam Velcro (on the back) heads. I have a flat attachment and a rounded attachment. Both are for the same purpose but from different companies expecting different results. I find the flat head to leave a harsher line but I’ll discuss techniques later. These are foam and need more ink to get a fuller blend. They do serve a great purpose on smaller projects. The rounded attachment is also a foam but not as porous as they seem to have a slicker surface. These blend over my papers more smoothly than the flat heads. I still find myself reaching for more ink mid project and I DO NOT with the brushes mentioned above. I still use these in color families. The blending handles can be purchased at any major crafting store or my personal favorite, Scrapbook.com. The flat foam attachments can be purchased with multiples in a pack at your local craft store or the rounded attachments at Scrapbook.com as they are a Scrapbook.com exclusive. Both have great price points and both clean well. Let’s talk technique!

Techniques. Start off the project 1st to avoid harsh lines. Remember I prefer a glass mat or a craft mat for easy cleaning. Next, I start small. DO NOT BLEND LARGE AREAS AT ONE TIME. You’ll never get the results you want. Once you get a smaller blend, move out to larger areas. Before you know it, you’ll have a fully blended project! I learned this the hard way and gathered my inspiration from Tim Holtz and experience. Don’t stop here, there’s more!

Color coordinating. As I stated in a previous blog post, I use Distress Oxide and Distress Inks. I stated the formula difference in simple terms. Go check out my blending post. I use Distress Oxide and my other inks aka. Other brands, with the same tools. Clean in-between by simply rubbing on a paper towel or baby wipe. TA-DA cleaned! May be stained but won’t contaminant each other. Remember Oxide is a hybrid. Now, my Distress inks are a little different. I only use specific tools on that formula (not hybrid) they can get contaminated. For the purpose of cost, I use my Velcro heads for this. I’ll show you how I store them in another storage post coming up. Subscribe so you don’t miss that!

I hope this helped inspire you and answered any follow-up questions you may have had since my last post. DON’T FORGET to check out my other forms of social media: Facebook/Instagram/Pinterest @sewmuchglitter Let me know you were there and what you would like to see more of. If you are inspired by any of my projects or techniques please tag me on your social media #sewmuchglitter

Don’t miss out and subscribe to my blog. You’ll be notified of new posts, which could contain great inspiration and ideas for your creative side. Leave me a comment and let me know which blending tools you prefer.

SEE YOU SOON!

Blend it out

Thanks for joining me today! If you’ve missed any of my previous posts, go check them out and leave a comment to let me know what you think. I think it’s important that we inspire each other and let our creative sides show! My last post focused on my favorite (and not so much) papers for different mediums. This one will focus on ink blending. So, let’s GO!

Let’s start with the latest Distress Oxide release……SPECKLED EGG! Distress Oxide is one of my favorite inks to blend with because it blends so well and looks great (it also has some special talent that I’ll share later). Color technique escape me sometimes but I do have a color wheel to cheat (this tells me what colors compliment each other, but ultimately when in doubt. YouTube! These color combinations were inspired by Kristina Werner, one of my go to YouTubers (when I’m in doubt of my color combos). The color combo on the left is: speckled egg, seedless preserve, and picked raspberry. You may notice my two ink cubes are distress ink and not oxide, but I used what I had and they blended well. Distress inks: dye ink, dries quickly. distress oxide: dye and pigment making it a hybrid, dries slower. The color combo on the right is: speckled egg, peacock feathers, and chipped sapphire. This color combo blended more smoothly because they are all similar colors but both combos will be great backgrounds. I did use my Canson XL mixed media paper and color blending brushes. Let’s see what’s next!

For these next backgrounds I used heavy card stock (80lb) from The Stamps of Life, this tends to pill (paper peel) because it can’t handle water or being worked over multiple times. I wanted to experiment how it would hold up, and it didn’t completely disappoint me but I will save this paper for other card making techniques in the future. For these backgrounds I used a stencil in two different ways. Remember I told you that Distress Oxide has a special talent….It’s water reactive! Let’s start on the right side: ripe persimmon and peacock feathers. I blended these two colors together then placed the stencil over the paper (secured with washi tape) and pressed a wet paper towel (a baby wipe works well too) over the stencil, as much as my paper could handle. When I removed the stencil, this was the result. It added another dimension to my background. The right side: twisted citron, worn lipstick, and dried marigold. For this technique I secured the stencil on the paper first and then blended over it. I like to use a glass mat or a craft mat when blending because it is easy clean up and I can start off the paper first for a seamless blend.

I hope you enjoyed these techniques sprinkled with tips and tricks. Let me know what your favorite color blends are in the comments below. If you try these techniques don’t forget to share to your social media and tag @sewmuchglitter and hop on over to Instagram @sewmuchglitter to see what I’ve been creating, leave me a comment and let me know what inspired you.

Oops! I almost forgot to share the details of my last technique. I used Distress Crayons on my mixed media paper and blended them out with my fingers, used the wet stencil trick on top and then die-cut the background. Making backgrounds in bulk is fun and satisfies my creative itch. Die cutting my creations creates extra elements for my projects and allows me to stock up for future card making.

Thanks for stopping by and I will be back soon with my favorite blending tools! You don’t want to miss out so remember to subscribe to the blog and find me on Facebook/Instagram. See you soon!

Let’s talk paper

Thanks for joining me. I hope everyone is safe and well. Just as we thought 2020 couldn’t get anymore challenging, we are faced with sad circumstances. On a positive note, it is great that we can still still come together to witness the revolution of space exploration. I grew up during a time that NASA was embraced and it’s exciting to see that become a reality again.

I’m not here to create a forum about our differences but here to create a place where we can share our creativity and gather inspiration. So, on that note……LET’S TALK PAPER!

We all create things differently and have different design tastes, but we still use the staples, like paper! I am a big paper crafter and have realized that not all paper is created equal. We see some retailers or influencers tell us that the paper doesn’t matter but the other products do, and we have some tell us only the paper matters. So which is it? We kind of have to figure that our on our own. I am here to share my experience with you and hope it helps guide you the next time you are walking the craft store isles.

FIRST, let’s talk watercolor paper. In my experience, this DOES matter. Water generally breaks down paper and eventually rips it. The thicker the watercolor paper, the better. There are different textures, hot or cold pressed. I’m not a scientist so I will share that Strathmore watercolor paper cold pressed 300 series is my favorite. It is thick enough to take on a lot of water and allow the colors to remain as vibrant as you want them. I am a stamping water-colorist because my free hand skills aren’t great. This paper can handle it all and remain intact. Water coloring on regular card stock, no matter how thick can be a mess. This is my best recommendation. The price point is a bit higher but so is the quality (get your coupons out!)

NEXT up let’s discuss mixed media paper. There is a world of mixed media paper to be discovered. I don’t just watercolor, so mixed media papers are my go to. Especially when Michael’s has BOGO! I’ve experimented in this area a lot. My work horse has been Canson XL mixed media paper 98 lb. I can watercolor without the paper pilling as long as I do not stay in the same area for too long (it’s not Strathmore but it’s versatile). I can use my prismacolor pencils and gamsol on this paper and I can use my alcohol markers without a problem. The price point is great too, that’s why it’s my most used.

Another mixed media paper I have tried is also a Strathmore, but mixed media (98lb) I got this at Target. Now that Target has spruced up their craft section I always have to look. This price point is a little more than the Canson XL and the quality does NOT hold up. I was very disappointed. The paper pills with very little water and it smears other mediums. I do not know if the quality was subpar because it was sold at Target or if it is just that paper. Either way, there are plenty of other products to spend your money on. Let’s talk about those!

As we keep moving along, lets address marker paper. I’m specifically referring to alcohol markers when discussing this paper but the marker world is large, so please share your experiences with me in the comments below. Ok, We’ve rounded back to Strathmore again. I LOVE their marker paper 400 series 50 lb. It is smooth, spreads the color beautifully and does not soak it in. Your projects remain vibrant and clear. Again, another great Micheal’s BOGO opportunity! This price point is comparable to that of Canson XL, so even without a sale, you get your money’s worth. On a side note, I have used Crafter’s Companion alochol marker paper and really enjoy that too. It is harder to find in retail but is sold online and HSN. I feel the better deal is the Strathmore because Hey, I make mistakes and throw things out sometimes. I don’t feel like I’m loosing with the Strathmore when that happens.

OK, those are a few of my favorite papers. I hope this helps you. The options can be overwhelming. Please share with me your favorite papers in the comments below. Don’t forget to checkout my Instagram/Facebook: @sewmuchglitter for the projects I have completed with these papers. And tag me #sewmuchglitter in the projects you have used or tried because of my recommendations. I realize this was long-winded but chats can be that way.

If there’s a project you’d love to see, tell me in the comments below. I’ll be back very soon! Checkout Instagram for sneak peeks.

Welcome back! Even with life slowly opening up, it’s been a busy time. Graduation season is in full swing and college prep is starting to take center stage. Whatever the future will look like, it’s important to celebrate our accomplishments and spread positivity. I am going to share a simple project that is a great gift with multiple uses. It is a great sparkly focal point that is functional. Let’s gather our materials and start creating!

First you will need some rubbing alcohol, I keep mine in a dollar tree spray bottle. Mod podge, foam brush, and your favorite fine glitter. Not pictured here, you will also need something to seal your project with. I use art deco triple thick (found on amazon or any local craft store). You also need a glass cup of your choosing (I find the dollar tree perfect for finding what I need). I apologize about the sizing of my picture as I had difficulty editing it. Next, it’s time to start creating!

NEXT, wash and dry your cup. Now spray the inside of the cup with alcohol and wipe clean. We will be applying the glitter to the inside as my project was intended to use for make-up brushes. Apply a coat of mod podge and immediately pour the glitter into the cup. Swirl it around so it is fully coated and drop the excess onto a plate as shown. Let dry (don’t worry the white streaks will go away once fully dried) Depending on your environment, it normally takes about an hour to dry. Repeat this step TWO more times. After the third time, let sit for a few hours before applying the triple thick. Once the triple thick is applied to the dry cup, let sit over night. Now it is sealed and ready to go or ready to embellish.

I stopped here as the recipient just loves the sparkle. If you choose to embellish the outside of the cup using a sticker or vinyl with your cutting machine (such as a cricut), wipe the outside of the cup with alcohol to remove any oils. Let the cup cure for about 48 hours. Now it’s ready to be gifted or used! I included a bag of decorative sand (dollar tree strikes again) to pour into the cup so the make-up brushes could stand. This is also a great cup for pens/pencils etc…Get creative.

I hope you enjoyed this quick project. Please let me know what you would use this cup for in the comments below. Don’t forget to checkout my Instagram: sewmuchglitter for other project ideas and inspiration. Please tag me #sewmuchglitter if you create a project inspired by me. I can’t wait to share my next project with you, so follow me to get notified.

Have a great day!

Sunday Dinner

Hello and happy Sunday! I hope everyone finds themselves well. With a light at the end of a tunnel there is still a ways to go. If you are like me, you are sick of cooking and cleaning up during this time at home. I miss a few favorite resturants, and we also find odd things in our pantry or the fridge after stocking up. Let’s get creative! I love soup and I could eat it for any meal. My favorite soup when dining out comes from the Olive Garden but my family does not feel the same way. This prompts me to get creative. I enjoy using my crock pot or insta pot for this reciepe, there is less clean up, those odd foods find a purpose and it satisfies my taste for the Olive Garden.

Minestrone soup is my favorite soup and has many variations. Please enjoy this recipe and substitute aspects as you like. The basics of minestrone soup are tomatoes, vegetables and pasta or a variation of. Here are the ingredients I use for my soup:

  1. Ground Turkey 1-2 lbs
  2. Onion, Garlic, Salt, Pepper, Italian seasonings and Bay leaf
  3. Chicken stock 2-4 Cups (broth, bullion or water will work but season accordingly)
  4. Red Kidney beans drained
  5. Can diced tomatoes ( I choose seasoned)
  6. Vegetables! 1/2C-1C as desired: chopped celery, sliced carrots, chopped zucchini, chopped frozen spinach
  7. Pasta: elbow macaroni, tortellini and shells are all great options. We are ready to get cooking!

Whatever cooking method you choose, remember that you want the flavors to marry so it has that home cooked (I’ve been cooking all day) kind of taste. I use my crock pot and simmer on low for about six hours. I have a ninja crock pot that also has a stove top function.

  1. chop the onion and garlic toss it in the pot to let sweat on low. Add the ground turkey and brown. Start adding the seasonings (I start with 1 teaspoon of each) Stir together but don’t add the bay leaf until the end.
  2. Add the chopped vegetables followed by the tomatoes (not drained) kidney beans and stir.
  3. I now add my chicken stock, stir and let simmer for about 5-10 minutes.
  4. I turn my crock pot to low (remember I was on low stove top function) and add the pasta, stir and top off with 1 bay leaf. If you desire, add more seasonings. Set a timer for 4-6 hours and walk away!

This is a perfect Sunday dinner or midweek pick me up meal. It’s great to serve with garlic toast and/or salad. We love Parmesan cheese so we top our bowls off with shredded Parmesan. The leftovers are a hit and I mix up my ingredients so it feels like a new recipe when my love of soup isn’t shared. Some great substitutions are frozen vegetables, no meat, pancetta, cheese stuffed tortellini or rainbow rotini.

Don’t foget to check me out on Facebook/Instagram for other projects. Leave a comment and let me know what your favorite easy recipe is. If you try this delicious minestrone soup, show me (tag me @sewmuchglitter) I can’t wait to see yours!

HAVE A GREAT DAY AND STAY WELL!

Carrie F.

sewmuchglitter

2020 Graduates

Happy Saturday! I hope everyone had a good week and things near you are opening. It has started here in Southern California, in phases and slowly. The positive side is not everyone rushes out at the same time and we are beginning to feel less trapped. I hope this is the case all across America in the coming days.

I wanted to share a project idea that can double as an act of kindness. I have a graduating senior this year, who is feeling discouraged about missing out on all she has accomplished. She is also feeling overwhelmed regarding the college selection process and her upcoming journey. I know that my 2020 graduate is not alone and I wanted us to be able to support those special graduates in our lives. I have been busy during this quarantine making cards for seniors and other organizations that donates cards to those in need. I hope we can all show acts of kindness to our 2020 graduates by sending encouraging cards regarding their accomplishments.

This can be a home made gesture or a card that celebrates their accomplishment. The 2020 graduate doesn’t have to be a high school senior either. A kindergarten, middle school or college graduate is just as important and they are all missing out on important milestones. Leave a comment with the graduate you are celebrating and your address, if you are comfortable. If not leave an email address or find me on Facebook/Instagram: sewmuchglitter and we can private message. This will be done via the postal service because our graduates need some happy mail. There are several groups on social media doing similar things and I think it is important to show acts of kindness during this time. We are in this together! This can be a group effort and we can all share handmade kindness, so don’t forget to leave a comment on how we can contact you.

I look forward everyone’s response and don’t forget to check out my Facebook/Instagram: sewmuchglitter for card making ideas. I previously shared a fun and simple card making idea on my previous blog post that would be perfect!

See you soon! and HAVE A WONDERFUL MOTHER’S DAY WEEKEND!

I’m Back

Hello and Happy Sunday! I took a very long break due to life situations that kept me occupied. My creative space is now a classroom, my dining room is now my creative space and my early retirement due to injury has brought me on a new journey that has finally started. My high school senior has also been facing difficulties as many others and adult children never stop being children. I hope everyone and their loved ones are well. I am sure everyone still finds themselves at home or working an essential job. As summer weather is approaching, we are getting restless. I am grateful for our health and those working everyday to keep us all save and well. I have faced some creative slumps during this process and been inspired by those who never stop creating.

Today, I want to share a card that I made for an organization (Cardz for Kidz). They also donate hand made cards to senior living facilities around the country. If you face moments of creative block, I hope this inspires you. I made about a dozen cards to give to the organization and mail them off according to their website guidelines. Scrapbook.com also has a similar donation system. I also have been trying to make happy mail cards for friends and family that we cannot see right now. Do what makes you happy or less anxious during this time and hopefully we will be at our favorite spots visiting soon!

This card is a monochromatic type card and simple. I started with a standard A2 size card base (4.25 x 5.5), I chose black, I like a heavy base (110 lb card stock) I find the paper at Joann’s (when their open of course, but online has similar selections) I then trimmed down kraft card stock slightly less than the base, so there is a border.

I dug through my stamp stash and found mandala stamps that would be easy to color. I stamped directly onto the kraft card stock with versa fine black ink. This ink is great at fine details, perfect for colored pencils and water coring images. I used my stamp positioner but an acrylic block will work as well. Once my image is stamped I simply colored spaces in with a white colored pencil (keep it sharp, something I learned from Kathy at the daily marker) I use prismacolor premier colored pencils as they blend well when I use gamsol. You can randomly color spaces in or color in a pattern.

Once I was satisfied with my colored image, I made a sentiment tag. I used the scrap paper from my project and stamped a sentiment (also in versa fine ink) I then popped up the sentiment with foam tape and I was done! These would be easy to mass produce or fun for a quick card.

Let me know in the comments below if you enjoy the monochromatic inspired look and how you are keeping busy and healthy during our trying times. I PROMISE I will be back very soon. Don’t forget to check out my other projects on Instagram or Facebook: sewmuchglitter

Stay safe and well! Carrie

Boredom Busters

Happy Saturday! As this situation progresses, more of us are finding extra time at home. Sometimes it isn’t always quality time. We just have to remember that we are all in this situation together. We can help and inspire each other. Be kind in the grocery store or pharmacy. I would love to hear what everyone is doing to bust through the boredom. As I know I have promised a glittery project, I have been having trouble finding all of my supplies in the stores or online but……My friend did reach out to me and has some of those supplies on hand. I tend to use up my “pretty” supplies first. Just know that is still coming.

MY BOREDOM BUSTERS. I have found during this time that keeping a daily schedule helps with productivity. Spring is coming and now is the perfect time to start our gardens. For those kiddos stuck at home driving you crazy, home made play dough or a nature hunt are fun ways to occupy their time and minds. I remember the days of struggling to keep them entertained (and that was when we were allowed to roam free). The internet is a perfect educational tool as well. There are a lot of museums and zoos offering free looks into their worlds via webcams. My daughter and I have checked a few out and it is worth a look. I love baking, so now is the perfect time to experiment with my recipes. Spring cleaning is always a good option too, especially with the kids. They like to feel productive too. I had to make a game out of it or the kids weren’t going to help me clean.

On the crafty side, I am still making cards for seniors who are alone during this time. My last blog post highlighted some great organizations who accept card donations for just this occasion. Take a look and let me know what organization you like the best. The daily marker 30 day challenge is still happening through the end of the month, kids can partake as well. Check out my Instagram (sewmuchglitter) for some great ideas and how you can hop into the fun. Check out some new crafting techniques on Youtube, I like to watch Melody Lane, Jennifer McGuire, Scrapbook.com, or May May made it to name a few. Tim Holtz is even doing some fun Facebook lives. It’s great to learn new things and keep entertained at the same time. Let me know if you enjoy YouTube or interacting on Facebook during this time.

KEEP HEALTHY! As part of my daily routine, I have been exercising and continuing my daily vitamins. This helps with positive attitude and feeling better. Plus don’t forget the hand washing ritual, 20 seconds never felt so long but Alexa is there to count down to keep things interesting. Or good old fashioned counting or singing. Anything to get to 20 seconds. Check me out on Instagram or Facebook to keep up with my boredom busters and let me know in the comments what you have been doing.

AS PROMISED. My next blog project is coming very soon. I just need to grab the supplies from my friend’s front porch (social distancing). SEE YOU SOON!

Spread Kindness

Everything just keeps getting worse and more drastic changes are required for our daily lives. As this virus keeps progressing and more of us are forced to stay home, imagine how the senior citizens of our communities feel. I live in an area where there are a lot of retired people residing in assisted/senior living. Some of these retirees live there by choice and some do not. Just like us, they are used to their daily routines and socializing is a huge part of their lives. Now, they can no longer socialize as they are used to, which is sometimes detrimental to their health. We can still leave our homes and go for a walk or shop in the dreaded grocery store, wave to our neighbors. Their only interaction is with staff, which are spread thin and cannot always sit and chat as a loved one would.

During the daily marker 30 day coloring challenge, it has made me realize that crafting for a purpose is rewarding. Why not share that during such times like these, or all the time. As Jennifer McGuire has brought to the crafting world’s attention, card making is her super power (and she’s a great super hero!) She is encouraging everyone else to share handmade kindness.

Why not create cards or write letters to those in need. This could be the “visit” they need today. There are a lot of organizations that spread this kind of joy to seniors and beyond, I have found a list of them from a reliable source: scrapbook.com. Check it out and discover how you can help during this time. If you also find yourself home bound, it can help you too. If you are in a highly retired area, reach out to your local nursing homes and see if they are accepting such items like a handmade card. USPS is still running if they will not accept such offers at the door.

Hop on over to my Instagram: sewmuchglitter to see the cards that I have been working on as well join in on the daily marker 30 day, the kids can even join in! Say HI when you are there.

In such uncertain times we need to reach out to others, if you know of a senior give them a call or send them a friendly hello card. Let me know in the comments below if you find an organization on scrapbook.com that you want to reach out to. Let me know if you need help or how you can help someone else. I chose scrapbook.com because they are a reliable online craft retailer who support reputable charities and I have encountered other artists who have had great experiences with these organizations.

I am excited to share more projects with you and some creative meals for all of our at home time.