Wednesday, May 23, 2012

use your scraps week 2 | mixed border strips

Hola, everyone, and welcome to the first of today's two posts in this week's Use Your Scraps 2 series...or, as a reader called it yesterday "The Scraps Strike Back." You know I love that, right, Nat? As I sit here in my Domo Chewbacca t-shirt while writing this post...

Today we're going to work with one of the scrap groupings that I suggested you gather in Monday's organization post- strips!


And this is also where all those cut-off strips that I hinted that you might want to save will come into play. Yup, we try to use everything around here!


The inspiration for today's project hails from Michelle Wooderson's lovely blog. Her genius idea for cutting and creating massive amounts of decorative border strips ahead of time set off all manner of crafty sparks in my head, and as soon as I saw it I knew I wanted to make it a part of this week's festivities.

Michelle started her borders by cutting down full pieces of paper into strips that she then die-cut, but we're going to use our scraps for them instead! Michelle also used border dies from Papertrey Ink for her borders. I don't happen to have any of those on hand (not that I wasn't sorely tempted to order some!), so I turned to my trusty Silhouette Cameo instead and found a plethora of border files available in the Silhouette shape store. If you're a Cricut user, many cartridges have border shapes or shapes that can be turned into borders, and if you use Make the Cut or Sure Cuts a Lot with your machine you can of course find a multitude of free border SVG files around the web. And if you're not a digital cutter at all? Have no fear! This can easily be done with border punches or even decorative scissors, and a little later today I'll have a special post showing how to use some of the new Spellbinders tools for this project, too!

Just as I did for yesterday's Project Life layout post, I'm going to start with a color palette (this one is from Photo Card Boutique) to help pull something cohesive out of the random chaos that is my scrap pile. In a "bad blogger" moment, I forgot to take a photo of the pile of scrap strips that I selected before I started cutting them, though, so please use your imagination and visualize my pile of scraps in your mind, have a look at the pretty color palette, and then scroll down for the assembly and project ideas. :)

The Silhouette software made it very easy to place and size each border on the cutting mat in the exact area covered by my paper scraps, so I designed up several mats and cut them out. You can see one of the mats below- I'd already peeled off the excess from one border, and the others are cut and waiting to be lifted off the mat.


After several cutting passes (I made one mat for each color group), I ended up with a stack of individual borders that looked like this, all ready to be turned into fabulous layered pieces. As I said earlier, you can do this with any type of border-y tool you have on hand, just as long as you wind up with a pile that looks vaguely similar to mine.


I used a cutoff strip (you know, the barcode thingy) as a base for each layered border. Since it'll be completely covered by the finished product, it doesn't matter what this base strip look like, and it's the perfect width to accomodate a pass or two of adhesive from my ATG gun.


After applying the adhesive to the base, it's simply a matter of laying down one border strip with the non-bordered edge on the base...


...and then aligning another against it.


And for the top pieces I added a border strip that was cut on both sides (the Silhouette store has a good mix of both types available), making sure to cover the seam in the middle between the first two borders.


Then it's just later, rinse, and repeat until you have all the border strips that you want (or run out of scraps!).


As a finishing touch I stitched them all together, just like Michelle did.


And at that point they're ready to be used on projects! You can add these to layouts, cards, gift bags- the possibilities are endless! Michelle has some great ideas for using them here and here, and I used some of mine to make a couple of cards to share with you.

You may have read my Geek Girl post on Sunday where I mentioned the monster (fun, but still crazy) weekend that I had- with three birthdays, a late Mother's Day celebration, and a graduation, all of which I needed cards for. I did get to combine some of those celebrations, like my cousin's graduation and birthday that happened so close together that his mom threw one party for him for all of it. And I knew that Jake, being and 18 year old guy, wouldn't care at all if I combined his birthday and graduation card into one (I did, however, include twice the gift inside ;-) ). So out came my Studio Calico ampersand misting mask, and it along with some Lawn Fawn stamps and a border strip combined to make this card!


Oh, and the base of Jake's card? It's a scrap, too! It's a chunk of Tim Holtz's Kraft Core cardstock (left over from a mini album) from Core'dinations and is actually yellow on the inside- I just folded it so that the kraft back became the outside of the card. So many uses for scraps!

I cut one of my border strips down the middle to make it a bit narrower for the card below, which I've actually already given to Beth (my siste-in-law) for her birthday (along with a Project Life kit that she asked for- yay!).


Cards are just one of the many places you can use these border strips, and the Silhouette is just one of many tools that you can use to make them. I'll be back a bit later this afternoon to show you another fun way to make these- see you then!

Supplies (click on images for product links):