Sunday, November 29, 2009

Knowing When to Stop (Not)

I am of the confused generation. Never heard of it? That's the generation between the Depression-era people (my parents) and the high-tech people (my kids). On the one hand, I was raised to save, reuse, economize. On the other hand, they don't make things to last like they used to, so every 2 years you toss your phone for a new one.

I would see my own confusion all the time at the grocery store (when I used to go to the grocery store). I would compare the price per ounce on two products and get the one that was a penny less per ounce, but I would buy a $14 steak for no other reason than I wanted it. See, I am a bag of mixed signals. (Did I just call myself a bag?)

Where am I going with all this? The past three days I have been faced with a growing pile of Basic Grey Figgy Pudding paper cuttings. Not scraps, because this paper is precious to me. No, I have 3 or 4 packs (6x6) of the stuff, and I save all the cuttings for later. Why? Because I just know I'll be able to use them somehow, and it is so wasteful to toss them. But I do not even blink to throw away the same size piece of white or Kraft.

So today I took those packs of paper and emptied them of all cuttings, then I put the packs away. I DID! I was left with two main piles of scraps cuttings: thin strips, about 3/4" wide, and 2"-wide strips. I took the 3/4" strips and laid them side-by-each to make new background paper, then I cut them out with a Nestie and used them to make these:

Niiiice, huh? I am very proud of these. Not only did I use the strips of paper, when they were all assembled, there was a big empty in the top left corner, and I thought to use my snowflake punch to fill it! It is punched from shimmer white and has a faux gem from Mike's in the center. I immediately posted these for sale in my etsy store.

Next, I took a break from those paper pieces and used this one instead to make a gift card holder:

I don't know about you, but even though my favorite color is green, I tend to get a little weary of it this time of year, so I embraced the cool blue of Winter and used the snowmen to make this one. I actually made two of them.

This is the inside. Again with the scraps clippings: I had two small squares left and instead of tossing them, I punched out the photo corners and used them to dress up the white panel.

This card would also work for those who celebrate the Winter Solstice and not Chanukkah or Christmas. It would ALSO work for someone with a Winter birthday!

Okay, back to the clippings. Since these are 6x6 papers, when I made that card above, I trimmed off a bunch of 3/4" x 2" pieces. Yep - you guessed it - I made some 2" x 5.25" strips with them! I wanted to use this punch to shape the edges:

... but it failed me, or else it was never meant to punch through multiple layers of card stock. What to do ... what to do ... I used my Nesties, of course!

Notice the placement. I selected a die that was too long so the card stock fit completely inside of it (see the handsome right-side arrows pointing out the gaps between the ends of the card stock and the die). Then I laid the cutting edge right up against the edge of the card stock (see left-side arrow for that). And I got a perfect cut!

Isn't she a beauty?! I proceeded to cut the other two pieces the same way, and I ended up with three 2" pieces with nice scalloped edges on one side.

But wait! I would not need a full 2" to use as a border, so ...

... I cut one in half with the same die! Look how it turned out:

Sweet! I had two more to cut, so I did a double-barrel!

Wham, bam, done! I now had 6 edges, so I could make 6 cards. Nice! After much futzing and playing, this is what came out:

The new 1" scalloped pieces are along the bottom, and a plain strip of paper is pieced along the top. I've found the SU Cranberry and Artichoke papers work nicely with the BG Figgy Pudding. I also posted these in my etsy shop.

I still have a pretty sizable pile of 2" strips of these papers. Only time will tell if I get out of this rut or not. I have a few more weeks to decide what to do. For now, I think I'll take at least a break from them for a while. So I have not stopped, just paused. :-)

And to show you I've made other things the past few days, both of these papers have been sitting in my To Do pile and I have refused to put them away. Since the side heaps are growing in there, I used them last night.

This card says it all. YOU ARE OLD! That is some double-sided paper and I used both sides of it! I paired it with SU Cranberry and So Saffron.

And then there is this one:

I have had this paper and card stock cut for about 2 months, now, and I HAD to use it or go stark-raving mad. I really liked it with just the Not Quite Navy fancy tag cut-out, but since this was all about accessorizing, I felt I needed to accessorize the card. Those buttons were a royal pain in the patootie, they were! I ended up sewing them on! And I tied that yellow ribbon at least 12 times, and this is the best I could do. I am sorry. My customers think I do perfect bows all the time. Let this be a lesson to you all that I do NOT.

In closing this evening, I would like to say that sweet tea is the most disgusting thing ever invented. I asked for iced tea at a drive-through earlier today, and they gave me sweet tea. Blech! I have had it for over 4 hours now, and every time I take a sip, I gag. Throw it out, you say? Why, that would be wasteful (there it is again). Plus, I'd need to get up off the couch to toss it and/or get something else, so I keep taking sips of it and gagging.

Don't forget to shop handmade on Cyber Monday! See my etsy store for details!

Thanks for stopping by!


  1. I can totally relate, sister! I have scraps galore and teeny scraps! I would also nurse that sweet tea as you are doing. YECH!

    Hey, Heather the Mooselover is now home!!! Only about 3 miles from ME!

  2. lol i love sweet tea. I drink it by the gallon. Ok not really gallon but still. Love how you used those paper remnants... clever!

  3. Exactly my generation! You said it Leslie!!! Such stunning creations. And I love love LOVE your brilliant thrifty tricks. Couldn't agree more about "cuttings" vs. scraps! P.S. I love reading your playful posts. GF you can sure WRITE! (and your tags. Pure Hilarity!) :-D

  4. Fab post!!! I love ALL of the cards. I am of your generation too. Conserve, take care of belongings so they LAST...

    Sweet tea makes me gag; imagine my life when I lived in NC. It can be difficult to find unsweet tea that you can sweeten yourself instead of the gag stuff that will likely cause type 2 diabetes :)


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