Saturday, August 22, 2015

Anything Goes at CCC!

This fortnights challenge at Creative Craft Cottage is... Anything Goes! I adore digital images from our sponsor All Dressed Up and this card was so much fun to make!

Link up your creation by September 6th for a chance to win your choice of All Dressed Up digital images!

Supplies used:
  • All Dressed Up Image "To have and to hold"
  • Prismacolor Pencils
  • Spellbinders Blossom One Die
  • Spellbinders Damask Accents Die
  • Recollections 65 and 110lb card stock
  • Tea Party paper pad by Craft Smith
  • Spun Sugar and Bundled Sage Distress Ink
  • Rhinestone Embellishments 

Melonheadz Challenge - Hand Colored Image

The newest challenge at Melonheadz is: Hand Colored Image.  I love this daisy from the flowers bundle digital image set and handcolored with shades of yellow and orange Prismacolor Pencils. After blending I had to add a little copper Stickles to finish them off.

Bundled Sage Distress Ink was used for the edges and I love this cute dragonfly embellishment I received as a gift! Link up your hand colored creation for a chance to win your choice of digital images!

Supplies used:
  • Melonheadz Cassie's Floral digital image bundle
  • Prismacolor Pencils and Colorless Blender Marker
  • Copper Stickles
  • My Favorite Things "Textile Rectangle Sentiments" stamp set
  • Impression Obsession mason jar die
  • Ribbon and embellishments
  • Distress Ink in Bundled Sage
  • Tea Party paper pad by Craft Smith

Tuesday, August 18, 2015

How Much Postage to Mail My Handmade Card, Envelope or Postcard?

 ** This post is for mailing costs within the United States. For international mail, please check with your local mailing center for rates. **
I have learned quite a lot from my local post lady (thank you Judy!) and thought I would pass along some information to help you mail those postcards, letters or handmade greeting cards that sometimes get damaged in the mail.  First up, the cost.

The postal service looks at 3 important details:  1.) Size, 2.) Dimension, and 3.) Weight.

1.)  Size
Any item smaller than the minimum dimensions (in the chart below) is not mailable.

Dimension        Minimum      Maximum
Height 3-1/2 inches (8.890 cm) 6-1/8 inches (15.557 cm)
Length 5 inches (12.700 cm) 11-1/2 inches (29.210 cm)
Thickness 0.007 inch (0.018 cm) 1/4 inch (0.635 cm)

2.)  Next, Dimension (or thickness.) 
A card or letter MUST be less than 1/4" thick! (If not, it's a package, even if it's in an envelope.)
Anything 3-D that does not allow the envelope to lay evenly flat will need an extra charge. For example: a paper clip, coins, rhinestones, buttons, a decorative bow or large dimensional sticker/element. This requires a non-machinable surcharge of $0.22. (as long as it's still less than 1/4" thick! Otherwise it becomes a package rate.)

 Example of dimension, or thickness.

** Remember: Your cards and letters are sent through a machine to help aid the hard-working postal staff. Any objects or embellishments inside can get caught in the machine, causing damage not only to the machine, but also to your precious handmade greeting card! Keep these guidelines in mind, so they can treat your cards well in kind! **

3.)  Weight.  
  • If a letter weighs 1 ounce or less = cost is $0.49 cents or 1 forever stamp.  
  • Between 1oz and 2oz = $0.71 cents.  
  • Between 2oz and 3 oz = $0.93 cents. 
  • Above 3 ounces = a small package weight charge.

    Lots of information, so here's an example if you're still confused.  
    Example: You have a 1.5 oz envelope with a decorative bow inside and some half pearl embellishments. Weight cost, $0.71 cents + non-machineable charge, $0.22 cents = a total of $0.93 cents to mail your card/letter.

     Next, here are a few more tips from the post office that may answer any other questions:

    ---> For items larger in length, width, or thickness, see large envelopes or packages calculator.
    ---> For envelopes, length is the dimension parallel to the address.
    ---> For letter-sized items over 3.5 ounces, large envelope prices will be applied.
    ---> Letters that meet one or more of the non machinable characteristics below are subject to the non machinable surcharge.
    • It is a square letter
    • It is too rigid – does not bend easily
    • It has clasps, string, buttons, or similar closure devices
    • It has an address parallel to the shorter dimension of the letter
    • It contains items such as pens that cause the surface to be uneven
    • The length divided by height is less than 1.3 or more than 2.5

    Lastly, those square envelopes and postcards!
      Square Envelope
      The minimum size for a square envelope is 5 inches x 5 inches (12.700 cm x 12.700 cm).  A square envelope also qualifies for a non machinable surcharge.
      Mailing cost for a postcard is $0.35 cents. If you still have older stamps of lesser value, you can make up the difference with 1, 2, 5 or 10 cent stamps! (Lots more values are available at USPS online.


      Where is the fun part of this post?   
      Limited Edition Stamps from USPS!  These are usually available from your local post office or you can order them online for just a couple dollars shipping! I've also included links to some fun items for crafting...the magnetic page markers are so handy!

      Saturday, August 15, 2015

      Love Notes Postcard Project by Jennifer Belthoff

      The Summer round is over, but still wanted to share a wonderful project started by Jennifer Belthoff called Love Notes Postcard Project.  It encourages you to send a postcard, card or letter in the mail to a new friend you will be paired up with. The only cost was a postcard and stamp! (Plus papercrafting supplies I had on hand.) 

      The goal: Mail a postcard to your new snail mail partner once a week for 3 weeks in a row sending some positive inspiration. I wanted to share my 3 notes and prompts in case anyone needs a little inspiration of their own! The next round will start on September 25th, 2015!

      My first summer-themed postcard. I used watermelon2stamp set from The Stamps of Life. 
      My message:
             "On the road to travel you will find... lots of people busy with the daily grind. Most are much to hurried to see, how truly beautiful the small things can be. So take the time to spread a little kindness each day, and may the ripples come back to you in a glorious way!"

      For postcard number 2, I broke out some of my favorite House Mouse stamps! The front sentiment says "Happiness is a cup of coffee shared with a friend!" 
      What does the back say?"
            Choose today to... 
      • Stop procrastinating and finish what you start.
      • Believe in yourself. If you don't, who will?
      • Drive the extra mile to make someone smile.
      • Count yourself lucky. There are so many with so much less.

      Instead of a postcard for the 3rd and final love note, I decided to mail a card I had made for a previous design team project. Original blog post here. This quote is from a Graphic 45 paper pad and reads "A cup of tea warms the soul like a good friend." 

      On the inside was a quote on hope:
           "Hope is the thing with feathers,
           That perches in the soul
           And sings the tune without the words
           And never stops - at all."
      ~ Emily Dickinson

      Supplies used:
      All photos taken by AMLC and addresses covered for privacy reasons.

      Friday, August 7, 2015

      One for the Girls!

      Challenge #45 is in progress at Creative Craft Cottage and the theme is: One for the Girls! 

      I used this adorable digital stamp image from Lacy Sunshine called Kitty the Ethereal Meow Enchantress. She was colored using Prismacolor Pencils. I actually printed her twice, colored both images and then fussy cut one to put on top with foam tape.

      This gives the image a little dimension and I love how it turned out! You can view it better in the next two photos. The sentiments were stamped in StazOn Teal ink. They go well with this adorable image for a girl's birthday card!

      The die cuts were cut from pink card stock. I then used Worn Lipstick ink on a paper towel and lightly brushed over the die cuts so the embossed portion is highlighted.

      Link up your girly creation before August 20th for a chance to win digital images from our sponsor, Lacy Sunshine!


      Supplies used include:
      • Lacy Sunshine Digital Image - Kitty the Ethereal Meow Enchantress
      • Prismacolor Pencils and Prismacolor Colorless Blender Marker
      • Recollections card stock 65lb and 110lb
      • Spellbinders die - Hibiscus border
      • Distress Ink in Worn Lipstick
      • StazOn Teal Ink
      • Stampabilities Sentiments stamp set - Card Phrases
      • Glossy Accents
      • Embellishments (given as a gift)
      • White lace doily (from baking section in Michael's or your local craft store)

      Tuesday, August 4, 2015

      Sunny creativity!

      The newest challenge at Melonheadz is... Include a Sun!  Summer is in full swing, so share your sunny creativity with us! I outlined each image with a coordinating color Sharpie marker before adhering to heavy 110lb card stock. Some Patina Stickles helped with the finishing touches on the girl's bow and swimsuit.

      Link up your sunny summer creation here before August 16th for a chance to win a digital image bundle of your choice! 
      Supplies used:
      • Melonheadz digital image bundle - Alison's Feelin Beachy
      • Recollections card stock 110 lb
      • Lawn Fawn Harold's ABC's stamp set
      • Stickles glitter glue in Patina
      • Sharpie markers used to outline images
      • Zig two way glue pen