How to create a cute little Party Ant for your BBQ

Party Ant 9648

Sometimes in the midst of all my creative endeavors and the business of everyday life,

when I need a break from all the seriousness.

I like to stop and make something fun and a little bit silly. 

It’s one of my ways of procrastinating.

Honestly, I would never invite real ants to a BBQ, but, this one is dressed up, too cute and

ready for a party.  (a great little conversation starter)

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To make a Party Ant you’ll need a few supplies…

  • Three 1″ Smoothfoam Balls
  • Black Acrylic Paint and Paintbrush
  • Craft Glue
  • Bamboo Skewers (or small dowel rods)
  • Wire and Wire Tools
  • Adhesive Pearls (or googly eyes)
  • 1″ Round Piece of Scrapbook Paper
  • Tiny Black Pom Pom

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  • Dip the end of the bamboo skewers into craft glue and insert into the balls.
  • Paint balls with black acrylic paint.
  • After the paint has dried, cut the ends of the skewers approx. 3/4″, dip into glue and attach body and head of the ant together.

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  • Cut six 1″ pieces of wire, bend the ends as show, dip in craft glue and insert into body of the ant.
  • Cut two more 1″ pieces of wire and curl the top of the wire with wire tools before inserting them into the head of the ant for the antennas.

Ant Eyes

  • Add two black dots to the center of the adhesive pearls to use as the eyes.
  • Punch a 1″ circle from decorative scrapbook paper, cut a notch from the circle and glue together to form a party hat.  Glue onto the top of the ant.  Top off the hat with a teeny tiny pom pom.
  • Cut a strip of adhesive pearls to use as a necklace.

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Mine is fairly small, but, wouldn’t a giant one make a cute centerpiece?  (think real big!)


How to Mist and Stencil a Mixed Media Pillow

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I enjoy making pillows.

Especially when it’s a quick and easy “no sew” pillow with a twist.

How about a little misting and stenciling with Tattered Angels Glimmer Mists?

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I started my project off with a 12″ plain canvas pillow cover, versatile check stencil (see end of post),

Tattered Angels Glimmer Mists and large iron-on embroidered letters from Joy.

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Using removable painter’s tape, I taped the stencil onto the canvas.

I wanted my pillow to have a subtle background so I lightly sprayed with Tattered Angels

Crushed Shells Glimmer Mist.

Because the pillow is decorative, I’m not worried about the spray being washable.

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I used large Iron-on letters from Joy to spell out the word “Home”.

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To customize the plain white letters, I sprayed them with Coffee Shop Glimmer Mist for contrast.

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Allow the letters to fully dry before arranging onto the pillow.  Cover the letters with a cotton cloth

and iron for about 30 seconds.  I ironed it again from the back of the fabric for another 30 seconds.

Burlap Flower

I added an old button to the center of a burlap flower from Canvas Corp Brands

and glued it onto the corner of my pillow with Fabri Tac Glue.

I used a 12″ pillow form from Fairfield World to stuff the pillow.

Deco Art DECADS.20 Americana Decor Stencil Versatile Checks*


This project was created for the Creating with Joy Blog and was sponsored by Canvas Corp Brands, Deco Arts, Fairfield World, Beacon Adhesives and Joy SA.

*This post uses affiliate links.

I actually made it to the ocean this year.

Myrtle Beach Layout 09768

Going to the Ocean is one of my favorite things to do…

and it had been three long years since we last visited.

It was long over due.  The beach was calling.

Long daily walks on the beach, soaking up the sun, ocean breezes, good food, reading and relaxing.

It was hard to come back.  I needed another week.  (I need another week!)

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During our week there, we allowed our teen-age son to visit and stay with his best friend who lives

an hour away from where we were staying.  Giving him those few days to re-connect also gave

my husband and I a few days to re-connect as well.

Charleston Collage

After we picked him up we headed to Charleston for the day.

Charleston is one of the most beautiful and one my all time favorite cities.

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Charleston is steeped in history and gorgeous homes.

I enjoy walking along the harbor, taking pictures and checking out the architecture.

Sweetgrass Baskets

Another favorite is visiting the Market Place where I am always fascinated by the Sweetgrass Baskets,

a true Charleston tradition.   (I’ve invested in a few baskets over the years.)

The baskets may seem a little pricey, but, when you consider the tedious hours of labor that goes into

each one, they’re probably underpriced.

Myrtle Beach

Luckily, we had a few more beautiful days of sunshine together before heading home.

It’s never enough time for me.

(If you’d like you can read last year’s post about not going to the beach here.)

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I created my beach layout using Paper House Productions

At the Beach Paper Crafting Kit and the New Beach Mixed Card Pack.

I layered three different patterned papers to mimic the color of the water on the horizon line

and the feel of the sandy beach.

Beach Life Close Up 9781

I love the New Beach Mixed Cards, the pack comes with a variety of pictures, overlays and frames.

(I added thin 3-D foam mounting squares to the back of the frame before attaching it to the picture.)

The Myrtle Beach Sticker (for decorating your phone) was found at a local beach shop.


Here is a list of the Paper House Productions products used:

You know that feeling when you get the Urge to Purge?

I first got the feeling sometime in late January or maybe it was March…

You know… The Urge to Purge!

It happened while I was looking at the Christmas Crafting Hang-Over still lingering in my office.

It had been quite the party and no one had stuck around long enough to really clean it up.

Time to organize again.(The above picture is a picked up version taken before I started in Jan. or was it March)

Something needed to be done.

So…I started the slow process of digging out.

I purged, I tossed, I gave away, I cleaned, I dusted, I organized and I purged a little more .

I even purchased a new lamp and picture for my desk.  (a reward for a good job)

In the end it was a lot of work mixed in with deadlines and a lot procrastination.

I took my time.

Since I’m done for now (always a work in progress), I thought I’d to share a few pictures.

My Workshop measures only 8 1/2′ x 10 1/2′.

It has a large sliding patio door that leads out onto an upper balcony, a door into the master bedroom,

a closet door and a door into the main hall.

Size alone is a challenge, not to mention working around all those doors.

That’s why it’s real important that I manage a little bit of self-control.

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This is My Desk…

I love sitting down to a clean and organized space.  (If only it looked this way all the time.)

My desk holds my office supplies, files, embellishments, my favorite inkpads, samples, photo albums,

computer and a whole lot of misc.  It’s large a little over 6 feet with a built in bookcase.

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I love this picture and had to get it the moment I saw it.  (I found it at Homegoods)

Being a lover of the color red, I found the lamp on sale at Target for $20.  It’s perfect for this spot.

Ikea Shelf

To the right of my desk is the sliding patio door.

(Next to that door is the door that leads into my master bedroom.)

In front of the patio door, I have a shelving unit which I bought from Ikea.

It holds a plethora of goodies.  Ribbon, Big Shot, Metal Dies, Samples, Paintbrushes.

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Next to the Ikea unit, I put my small black cabinet…a.k.a. my fabulous thrift store make-over,

that cabinet holds small paint bottles, tattered angel mists, misc. hardware pieces and more.

You can read about the cabinet make-over here.

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Next to the bedroom door is my large red stamp rack that holds more embellishments than stamps.

It holds the stuff that I grab often.

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I love old drawers, tiny baskets and jars.

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What can I say… “I love Ribbon!”

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Next to the red rack is my closet door.  (kind of boring)

And…next to the closet is a set of cabinets that holds my go to cardstock rack and die cutting station.

I like closed door storage for the things I don’t access regularly.

Across from these cabinets are white storage cabinets.

In between is a super short hall leading to the main hallway.  (I told you my workshop was small.)

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My white storage cabinets are to the left of my desk.  They store the bulk of my paper and stickers.

Because I work with several different manufacturers, I have them sorted by company.

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Above my white storage cabinets is my inspiration board that holds some of my favorite family pictures.

I had to include it in the tour because it makes me happy.

And with that…I’m now back to my desk and that concludes the tour.

If you stand in the middle of the room you can spin and see everything.  (only one at a time please)

SO…. one big question.

Did I inspire you to do a little purging of you own?


Introducing a New Class: Echo Park’s Happy Summer

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I  have a New Class for August at The Paper Forest in Washington, Illinois.

Echo Park’s Happy Summer

Summer Fun doesn’t have to end just because the kids are going back to school.  
There’s still plenty of time to enjoy the sunshine and play. 
Create a 4” x 6” Sunshine Frame, a cute little Mini Scrapbook and fun cards to capture and remember those fun summertime memories.

Saturday, Aug. 27th from 10:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.

Cost:  $26.00

Contact The Paper Forest at 309-745-3440 to sign up or for more information.

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This cute little album includes flips and flaps to highlight those fun Summer Memories.

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We’ll create a couple cards including “life is better in flip flops”.

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This Sunshine frame is so fun and happy.  You can replace the saying with a cute picture.

This collections comes with so many cute sayings to mix and match.


Remembering Birthdays 7gypsies Style

Remembering Birthdays 7gypsies style

A Clever and Creative Way to Remember Birthdays.

I come from a large and always expanding close knit family.  With all that family,

there’s a lot of birthdays to remember.  As a solution, I decided to make a small desk

top monthly reminder with a funky vintage vibe.

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I started with these cute little Heirloom Calendar Months that come on one 12″ x 12″

sheet of paper.  You can cut them up and add them to your journals, fold them to make

a mini calendar or birthday book or cut the month artwork to make your own daily or

monthly journal.  Each month features a little piece of art and you can color them to

match your style and journal theme.

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I used the Heirloom Months along with a variety of Tags, Printed Paper and Ephemera

from Canvas Corp Brands Seven Gypsies Collections.

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The base for my Birthday Reminder is a 4″ x 6″ clear craft frame from Deflecto Craft Solutions.

I drilled two holes in the top of the craft frame to hold the antique silver binder rings and

gather everything together.

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This project was created for and sponsored by Canvas Corp Brands and Deflecto Craft Solutions.

I would cross the Ocean for You…

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When ever I see a Lighthouse, I think of my sweet Mom.

Mom loved all things Lighthouses.

Knick knack’s, postcards, t-shirts, sweatshirts, you name it.

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And… she’d cross the ocean for you.  She was that kind of Mom.

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My Mom was also a card maker and loved using stamps and stickers to make her cards.

Isn’t it great that the supplies we use as Scrapbookers are perfect for creating Quick and Simple cards.

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One tip that Mom and I learned at a Mrs. Grossman’s class (back in the 90’s) was…

to make a sticker non-sticky, apply baby powder on the back of the sticker with a paint brush.

My favorite tip for making dimensional cards.

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For this card I used the Nautical Collection from Paper House Productions.

Paper House KTSP-1029E Nautical Paper Crafting Kit, 12″ by 12″, Multicolor**


This card was created for and sponsored by Paper House Productions.

**This post uses Amazon Affliate Links.


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