Month: December 2015

yay 2015!

As usual, the end of the year is approaching way too quickly, but what a year it’s been! I started this blog almost one whole year ago. Thank you for following my adventures in craft and explorations throughout the year! Since I’m feeling nostalgic, let’s finish off this year’s posts in Throwback Thursday Top Ten fashion. (10) I started at a new job. It’s almost my one year anniversary. (9) I created an eggcellent egg decorating workshop for West Elm Emeryville and have since thrown a few crafty events in store. Talk about crafting in fabulous places. (8) I was approached numerous times so people could take pictures of my feet, ahem, Lego shoes. Fan club much? (7) I played hooky (ok, fine, I took vacation days) to craft with Zelma Rose on the Creative Live set! (6) This past summer I was Guest Craftmaster at the cutest Alameda shop – Modern Mouse. (5) I took a watercolor lettering workshop with one of my favorite artists when she was visiting from the Philippines! (4) I learned …

garcia garden: winter edition. 

Home for Christmas means more time admiring the garden and it’s bounty. Here are some lovelies from the front yard. ‘Twas a sunny 59 degrees. This sago palm has been growing in same spot for 30+ years. I have a picture with it the day after it ‘snowed’ in Duarte. No more functioning fountain because of the drought, but it makes for a beautiful succulent garden. Tall palms live here, too. And poinsettias because Christmas. My Dad ‘reddened’ them by keeping them in the sun during the day and in complete darkness (i.e. covered with a cardboard box) at night everyday for over a month. More succulents and colorful blooms! What blooms in your garden? Share below! And check out the backyard, too.

tag, you’re it. 

Looking for a fun way to sparkle up your Christmas gifting game this year? Try your hand at heat embossed gift tags. For this DIY you will need: Festive stamps Watermark stamp pad Embossing powder in assorted colors Embossing heat tool (I have Paper Source and Martha Stewart brand heat tools; they both work great.) Tags (Create your own or purchase them precut.) Coordinating twine/ribbon Scissors Tray/scratch paper (to catch the extra embossing powder) Instructions are simple: 1. Stamp Using a watermark stamp pad, apply ink to your stamp of choice. Press firmly on your tag. When it comes to heat embossing, using stamps gives images clean, crisp edges. Handwriting or drawing can be a little tricky, especially since the ink from the pens tends to dry more quickly than the ink from the stamp pad. Experiment with it! 2.Powder Cover your design in embossing powder and shake off the excess. If you are using more than one color, apply one color at a time and shake off the excess in between colors. You can reuse the …

Christmas treasures. 

Let’s be honest, I will travel for all things crafty. Now, Berkeley isn’t much of a trek, but I convinced my friends that we should visit uBe Art on San Pablo and Dwight for their holiday party and ornament decorating station. What a lovely art space! The gallery is filled with all kinds of art (watercolor, collage…) – each piece inspiring.  The owner, Winn, is major friendly and all smiles. She had sweets and warm beverages for all, and a full buffet of craft supplies to create handmade ornaments. I loved all the gold and textures. I created a glittery acorn and a golden tag. My friend created a fuzzy snowman, which she gifted to me and is now the angel atop our Christmas tree. Head in to peruse the art, enjoy some conversations, or to get crafty — uBe has a line up of workshops, too. Are you creating your own ornaments this year? Share below!

lined and noted.

Snail mail is the best. Here’s a fun way to add a little fancy to your Christmas greetings this year…or any greeting any time of year! All you need are: envelopes decorative paper (I really like washi paper) templates (you can make your own or get these nifty ones from Paper Source) a pencil scissors glue stick Choose the template that fits your envelopes of choice. Trace onto your decorative paper and cut. Ensure the template fits in your envelope snugly. Fold and glue. No need to glue the entire piece of paper, just the flap. Open up the flap and press down to secure. Fold the envelope and crease. And viola! Now you have a lovely lined envelope for an extra pop of handmade. You’ll never look at envelopes the same… Are you hand making your Christmas greetings this year? Share below!

wrap it up.

Oh boy! It’s that time of year- time to wrap up pretty little gifts with the most adorable packaging! Darby Smart teamed up with Gap to create a gift wrapping set, and as a Darby designer I got a sneak peek to get the party started. (Yasss!) It’s full of all the things to add a handmade touch to any gift.  – Get your own here! The kit comes complete with kraft paper, a set of gift tags by Darby designers, wooden tags, candy cane bakers twine, silver sparkle decorative tape, and a silver marker. And if you’re like me, you consider the shredded paper filler part of the kit, too! First off, can I say that I looooove kraft paper. It’s simple and clean, but has so much potential and can be dressed up in so many ways. Here, I’ve just added a wooden ornament to add some shape and dimension to the package. Easy peasy. And next up, I was inspired by the snowflakes on one of the gift tags and drew my own abstract versions …