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Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Whimsical Wednesday Challenge: Back to School Project!

Happy Wednesday, my sweet crafty friends! I hope your day is off to a sparkly start. :o)

The Whimsical Wednesday challenge this week is Back to School! Our fabulous Design Team member Faith came up with the idea. How fun is that? It's always nice to break out of the norm and create a project as opposed to a card or layout. There are so many exciting options for this challenge, and after much debate, I decided upon a teacher's gift. You can never have those too early, right? With a specific educator in mind, I created a drawer box and topped it with an easel card (my first!) that functions as a picture frame instead of a card.

"A smile is the reflection of a joyful heart."

The sentiment came about as I reflected on one of the things I most love about this teacher. It's the fact that her sweet demeanor encourages so many smiles. There are few things as beautiful as a child's smile. She continuously and effortlessly draws them as she fills their hearts with such joy, making the most of every opportunity to brighten their lives. It's also fitting, seeing as it rests below the frame that will soon hold cherished memories.

Suited to her personal preferences, I styled it to merge two of her favorite things: sparkly, swirly patterns used as the canvas to display her love for her kiddos. Displaying goofy photographs of her students on an elegant 'easel' is right up her alley. The scallop frame is trimmed in light turquoise (which doesn't really show) and is permanent. Tucked inside the drawer she'll find slightly smaller scallops ready to embrace a treasured picture, to be attached with small pearl brads. The frame is pop-dotted, so there's space to secure the tiny brad without wrinkling the papers. As a separate gift, I'll be making coordinating scallops containing little tidbits of encouragement, silliness, and observations to interchange with her personal photographs.

My love of sparkles and ribbon only intensified while I was away, so when I stumbled upon sheer glitter organza ribbon and a flower tutorial... jackpot! These are beautiful and easy as (eating) pie.

For the fastener/knob, I used one of my favorite buttons. Though the design is not hearts, it somewhat resembles them enough to make me think of them every time I see it. (Not that I'm sappy or anything.) Perfect for this project. :o) 

To finish it off, I adhered a rhinestone heart to the side because love needs to be a part of everything for this sweet teacher whose desire in life is all things beautiful. (More sap. I know.)

Tutorials used:
 * Drawer Box: Splitcoast Stampers (Note: I recommend making the drawer a little taller. I had to do some willy nilly things and improvise to lessen the gap.. next time I'll certainly increase the drawer height.)
 * Organza Ribbon Flower: My Butterfly Kisses 12 (Note: I had to use significantly narrower ribbon to suit this project and it was not wired, so your supplies need not be precisely as stated. Fabulous!)

I hope you'll join us this week in celebrating the beginning of a new school year! I'm excited to see what you all create. Visit the Whimsical Wednesday Weekly Challenge post to see what lovely prize is being offered. Also be sure to skip on over to the rest of the Design Team's blogs to see their incredible projects. :o) Thank you for stopping by and have a blessed day!

Key Recipe Components:
 * Cricut cartridge: Elegant Edges
 * Paper: DCWV
 * Ribbon: Casa Collections Special Occasion
 * Button: Tim Holtz Fanciful Buttons
 * Miscellaneous: iRock, Pearls



  1. I am home for just a brief moment before I head back to the new house for more cleaning and moving. So what do I do? I check out my favorite blogs! And naturally, your are one of the first friends I visit. Imagine my delight when I see you've created something new!

    What a beautiful teacher gift! One of the things I love most about crafting and card-making is how you can make each item PERSONAL. How much more special will this gift be to the recipient, because it was created with her in mind?

    The whole idea behind this gift is BRILLIANT. Who wouldn't love a beautiful box to store their precious memories? And of course, blue being my favorite, your colour choices are top notch. :) And my favorite part? Your ribbon flower. Oh, how I adore that ribbon flower embedded with pearls!

    As always Karen, you have outdone yourself. Thanks for bringing a smile to my face this morning. :)


  2. Karen you have once again created something special for your friend. She is going to love this Picture frame-memory box! You always put so much of yourself in everything you do. I pray everyone of our blog friends have at least one Karen in their lives. Hugs, Pam at

  3. This is just gorgeous!
    Lucky recipient. The colors and details are just so lovely.
    Great job!!!
    Crafty best wishes,

  4. I love!!! What a wonderful teacher gift! Love the sentiment and the easel card on the top! How wonderful of you to share the tutorials you used and give those that created them the proper credit. I will be trying the ribbon flower one! Melanie

  5. Beautiful, Sweets!!! Your teacher friend is absolutely going to love it. I know my favorite part are the shimmery, pearl flowers - absolutely fantastic. I'm sure her students will have a great time admiring it in her classroom too. <3

  6. Oh this is just beautiful!!! I really love all the details you used on these!!! Its really gorgeous! TFS

  7. You project is GORGEOUS!AMAZING job with it,I LOVE every details on this BEAUTIFUL project!!:)

  8. My dear, super-sparkly friend, you have simply created a masterpiece!! Wow, this is fabulous! Karen, you put so much thought and detail and love into every project you create - it is amazing and awe-inspiring and downright stunning! I can't believe this is your first easel card, and to put it on top of the box...genius! You are such a genuinely happy soul and an inspiration to me and I'm so thankful for your friendship :) Big hugs,


  9. Wow! This is so gorgeous! I love how the card is also a picture frame. The ribbon and bling look so awesome too! So pretty! :)


  10. Wow!! This is absolutely stunning Karen. You have thought of it all:) I love the beautiful sentiment, paper, ribbon and all the gorgeous details to this project! I have to try and make one~thanks for the inspiration. Amazing work!!
    Thanks so much for sharing!
    Sherrie K

  11. Karen, your project is stunning as always. You did not miss a detail, and everything was so well thought out. You did such a wonderful job personalizing this can tell by your post it was made with love in your heart. This special teacher is going to love this beautiful piece you have created for her! You certainly have added spectacular inspiration to the WW challenge:)

  12. This is BEAUTIFUL! I love the gift idea and the way you decorated it is just so pretty!

  13. karen this is absolutely beautiful. i think that special teacher is going to KNOW she is special when she receives this gift.

  14. GASP!!!!!!!!! It's AMAZINGGGGGGGGG!!!!!!!!

    *grabs you and gives you the most monsterous super squisher of all time*

    OMJ Sunshine! Are you proud of yourself today? I am just beaming from ear to ear in pride over you. I know how much heart and time went into this stunning project and honestly sis, it couldn't have possibly turned out more gorgeous.

    Just look at those stunning flowers and accenting and colour choices! And OMJ! I can't stop staring at how you made the drawer Sunshine! It is just genius! I soooooo lurve the knob. *hugglers it tons cause you know how much I love buttons* Only you Sunshine would think to use a button like that so strategically.

    Having taught, I know how much this is going to mean to your sweetest friend, sis. She is going to just adore it to bits and pieces. When I think about all the incredible memories and treasures your box will soon hold, I get all teary Sunshine. God bless you sis. Your love is just surreal.

    *squishers you with all my heart today* I LOOOOOOOOOOOVE YOUUUUUUUUUU!!!

  15. This is just so amazing. I'm a teacher and this kind of present would help make the difficult days fly. I love that it is a photo frame too. Teachers spend so much time with their students, they become so attached and love displaying photos. It is just so elegant and gorgeous and would bring a little piece of beauty to a chaotic room of chatterboxes. Love it!

  16. What an absolutely beautiful gift!! I love all the wonderful details and bling. :) Tfs and have a great day. :)

  17. I am sure this is going to make that very special teacher feel very special! It is a gorgeous display and would brighten anyone's day! Such a stunning project Karen with all those beautiful details! You are so talented! Thanks for sharing it with everyone!

  18. This box and card set are absolutely beautiful Karen! I know your friend is going to love it. The colors are so pretty and all of the little details like the pearls and rhinestones are so delicate and sweet! xo


Thank you for leaving some love! Have a beautifully blessed day. :o)

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