Saturday, August 10, 2013

50th Anniversary Garland

Yesterday I posted photos of the gorgeous waterfront property where my dear friends held a small 50th anniversary party.  I made them a garland out of tags that said "50 Years of FAMILY".  The couple were married on the Central Michigan University campus and had the CMU flag flying.  When they asked me to help "stage" the party, they had already purchased plates and napkins in CMU colors so instead of fighting it, I decided to run with it.  According to "tradition" the 50th anniversary is "Gold" so I added touches of metallic gold along with the mustard yellow/gold and maroon that represents CMU.
We interrupt this blog for a special announcement:  I have a laser printer...Yes. I.  Do.  How did you get that you ask?  My husband has sort of become obsessed with a few local auction places that get random, and I mean RANDOM items from business and estates.  It's all online and bidding and 
Ebay-ish.  And like Ebay, one can get some amazing things at a steal.. .IF one is CAREFUL.  We got a beautiful sink and vanity for our cottage for less than $100 and a bunch of surge protectors for $15.  They are old and UGLY, but they work and again the cottage needed them.  A few weeks ago he picked up this beautiful laser printer for $20 (Yes, that is TWENTY dollars) and a big honking typewriter (like every business had right 20 years ago) for $5.  The typewriter needs a ribbon but the laser printer is read to go.  Well, actually it keeps warning me to get more toner because there is only 1700 pages left on the current one.  How many years do you think it will take for me to print 1700 pages?  I'm so thrilled that I can print black and white items and no longer have to worry about my printed pages will run when I add ink.  (I'm doing the happy dance).  You will see in a project later that I was able to get a great patina because I added a lot of ink and wiped it off with a baby wipe- something I would never ever do with an inkjet copy.   

Ok....we now return to our regularly scheduled blog post:  Now that I am sitting down again it is time for a tiny pity party.  We no longer have any local scrapbook stores anywhere near me :(  I do have a Michael's and a JoAnn's that are close and a Hobby Lobby that is a 30-minute drive (lucky me...a brand new Hobby Lobby is opening next Monday, literally between Michael's and JoAnn's so I will at least be able to hit all three at once).  I usually stop in to Tuesday Mornings as well because they often carry Tim Holtz products at KILLER prices.  But Tuesday Mornings is very hit-or-miss and not something you can count on for a specific project.  I'm whining because when one has to accommodate a color scheme like maroon and mustard yellow with only the big chain stores... it is Tough.  A nice local scrapbook store would have had a MUCH better selection.  

Ironically there is a HUGE scrapbook store called Arnie's in Houghton Lake, Michigan, about 30 minutes from our cottages.  If you are EVER anywhere near, you must stop in.  This store is porn for crafters; especially crafters like me who dabble in a lot of different crafts.  Arnie's always has the latest and greatest before it is even late and great.  The store itself is HUGE... I've watched it grow from a small store to overtake the entire strip mall around it.  Literally you walk from store to store to store and you can see exactly where the old store walls were.  In it's current configuration it houses: 
  1. a large yarn section
  2. the biggest selection of basket weaving supply I have seen anywhere
  3. a humungous scrapbooking area with everything you can imagine and rubber stamps and inks
  4. a yummy coffee shop with rustic log furniture so you remember you are "Up North"
  5. a small gift/candle section
  6. a large selection of raw wood; both fine & craft painting supplies as well as leafing and faux finish items
  7. a large hobby area with models and kids craft kits
  8. the biggest custom embroidery and graphics area I have ever seen
  9. a big framing section
  10. smaller but well stocked areas for things like leather crafts; sequins, beading, and felt kits for the church bazaar crowd; candle making supplies; soap making items; felting; latch hooking kits; macrame (which is making a comeback according to home-decor fashionistas and NO, they don't work at Arnie's) and much more.  It's Paradise really.
As I said, Arnie's is a MUST STOP if you are near, but you can also check out their website.

It would have been perfect to shop at Arnie's, but it didn't work out because of timeing-it is on the way home but it takes about 20 minutes to get around Houghton Lake to the actual store.  I don't have any crafting supplies at the cottage so trying to hit the store on the way back up would mean a LOT of preplanning.  I am not good at this at all, I need everything close and make a lot of rash design decisions.  It would also mean a lot of crap to haul up there and my car isn't that big.  My point? Oh, point was I had to use what I could get in my home town and that is Eeeeh, Not Much! 
I used my favorite size tag, a #12.  I LOVE how big they are especially for garlands.  I struggled with what to actually put on the garland.  I didn't want to be cheesy and I wanted to convey what is important to them all in maroon and mustard yellow.  In the end, I went with "50 years of FAMILY" cuz I love what it says and I love what it means.  

To hang it up, I used decorated clothespins (more below) and I tied big tulle and seam binding bows on each end.  I added the two poms on either side of the garland.  I hung it all by the food tables.  
The #12 tags were covered with patterned or colored cardstock.  I used my favorite wet adhesive, 3M Quick Dry to glue the cardstock to the tags.  I often use Tombo Monoadhesive (a dry adhesive) but since it was going to be outside I didn't want the weather/humidity to interfere and sometimes the Monoadhesive doesn't hold up well.  After the glue had a few minutes to set up I trimmed down the cardstock, punched a whole at the top and inked all the edges.  I always use a Distress Ink for inking the edges of cardstock and 99.9% of the time I used Vintage Photo or Walnut Stain but this time I added Black Soot.  Why? Because there is a lot of black in the project and I wanted to keep that graphic look.  Some papers got both brown and black inks while some just the black or just the brown.  There are really no rules here's only paper.
 The letters are all Tim Holtz Grunge letters.  I mixed and matched the sizes and fonts to add a playful element.  I suppose it is no big surprise that I added know how much I am OBSESSED with Rosettes right now.  I am planning on having some to sell in my Etsy shop so stay tuned for that.
It is hard to see but the heart (and some of the other embellishments used throughout the garland) are covered with Dry Stickles Rock Candy Glitter.  It is so gorgeous in person, especially when the edges of the piece have a brown Distress Ink on them.  Something about the brown ink and the glitter itself is just nirvana.  Speaking of glitter....and I am always speaking of glitter....I received my order of Tim's new Distress Glitters.  I bought the entire set because, who are we kidding? My life is all about the GLITTER.  So it is here but I haven't had time to get it out and play...instead it is taunting me from my studio "come down and play with us....come down and play with us..." (read with a scary creepy voice).   Paula Cheney promised I would "love it" so I am excited to get to it.  Hopefully....tomorrow.....

You can see that I made each and every tag unique.  That is me...I like details and I like the challenge.  But you could easily make them all exactly alike or make one design for the "50", one for the "years", another for the "of" and a final one for all of the letters spelling "FAMILY".  Whatever makes you happy.
I painted the letters and numbers with a Gold Paint Dabber but instead of using the dabber, I opened the bottle and used a paint brush.  The edges are distressed with Black Soot.
This "50" is another item that was inked with Vintage Photo Distress and glittered with Distress Rock Candy Dry Stickles.  I used Ranger's Glue N Seal as the wet adhesive to hold the glitter.
I fell in love with the antiqued pearls from Recollections when I used them for Brandin's wedding.  I love the vintage edge they give to everything and I ended up grabbing another box of the multi sized pearls the last time they were 40% off at Michael's- they go on sale a lot so don't pay full price.  They look so perfect on this project.  
The clothes pins were decorated quickly as a last minute project.  I used Inkssentials 1/4" Wondertape  on each clothespin, pulled the red liner off (I grab the edge with my X-acto knife) and added a piece of decorative paper though you could easily use cardstock as well.  Since I used dry adhesive there is no drying time so I immediately added the gold Stickles glitter glue along the edges.  I do this by squirting a small amount- maybe  a 1" line- on the back of my hand and run the edge of the clothespin through the glitter glue trying to get the straightest and thinest line possible on all the edges.  It takes awhile for Stickles to dry so leave overnight if possible.  That's it!  

I have several more things to show you that I made and/or "staged" for the party so come back.

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