Saturday, October 29, 2016

Nativity Vinyl Glass Ball Ornaments

Seven nativity designs in delicate silhouette style
to cut from vinyl, attach to cut acetate or vinyl 
insert shape, roll into a tube, and place inside 
a 3" glass ball, add artificial snow
if desired, add bow or other decoration,
then feature on Christmas tree or other displays.
These scale-able vector graphic (svg) downloads
are available from SnapDragon Snippets,
SVG Attic, and Silhouette America's online store,
to work with digital cutting systems such as
the Silhouette Cameo (our favorite) as well as
Cricut Design Space and others.
Here is the set of designs:

ASSEMBLE: 1.Obtain glass ball ornaments.
Designs are sized 3.1" size which work well 
with the  "Celebrate It" balls from Michael's Crafts; 
also included are the slightly reduced designs 
for the 2.6" balls.

2. Cut the selected size design from vinyl.
Since these designs are very small, several may
be set up in one or more rows when 
preparing to cut. Allow space between the
designs for trimming. Trim each with a small
margin around the component cuts, like the area
of white backing shown on the "Holy Family" design
being modeled in the image below.
NOTE that a good choice is "outdoor vinyl" 
such as Oracal 651 which has a stronger adhesive 
to help keep tiny pieces attached to backing 
during the weeding procedures.

3. The tiny details of these designs will require careful
and slow weeding to remove all excess around
and within the design components. 
Refer to the thumbnails
which appear with the downloads, 
or to the image above to preserve only the design.

4. Cut the ball insert shape from clear acetate.
5. Cut a piece of transfer "tape" paper,
remove backing, and place over the weeded
vinyl design.
6. Use a "scraper" to "burnish" the transfer paper
over the vinyl pieces to ensure they will be picked
up correctly and completely.
7. Carefully peel away the vinyl carrier sheet
leaving ALL vinyl pieces attached to the
transfer paper.
8. Position the vinyl on the front of the 
clear ball shape.
One way to do this is (without a lot of inadvertent sticking
of transfer tape) to place the clear ball shape
ON TOP of the carrier with vinyl and 
adjust the vinyl design compared to the ball shape
up/down and side-to-side.
Once desired position is determined, trim away the 
transfer paper even with the clear ball shape.
Next, move the clear shape to be in its final position
 BEHIND the vinyl/transfer paper, aligning the lower
edges of both, and visually adjusting before
allowing the transfer paper to "stick" in final position.
9. Burnish with scraper tool to attach the vinyl
shapes to the front of the clear ball shape.
10. Carefully peel away transfer paper,
making sure that each tiny detail of vinyl
remains in position attached to the acetate.
Here is the completed acetate shape.
11. Remove the top cap and wire loop of glass ball.
12. Carefully roll the completed design side-to-side
with vinyl on the inside . . .
. . . then insert the roll through the ball stem.
When the acetate unrolls, make sure that it
self-adjusts to be in the center of the ball
with the "stem" extension in the ball's neck.
Straighten, if necessary, with tweezers.
13. Replace cap and wire loop.
14. If desired, add some fake snow flakes
into the bottom of the ball prior to
re-attaching the cap and loop.
Embellish with ribbon at stem as desired.

Sunday, October 9, 2016

Skeleton Card Box Envelope

Spooky yet sophisticated, this A7 (5x7) card
has a dimensional front that is built up
with rosette and circles layers,
centered atop a "wall paper" overlay of
skulls in oval "windows".
Its thickness requires special consideration
if you wish to enclose it for sending.

That is why this sized-to-fit box envelope
is just the ticket. It can be used for any dimensional
A7 card, closed with disc and twine wrap.
Skull emblem and tag help it coordinate to the card.

1. The A7 card featured in this tutorial will NOT be explained
in detail. Here are the basic steps:
A. Identify and cut the shapes
B. Fold the card base. Position (centered) overlay on base front.
C. Position (centered) and attach skull cutouts 
over the oval "windows".
D. Prepare the "31" front disc by threading perle cotton
or other soft twine on smallest darning needle possible
and thread up from back, down from front, etc.
to complete stitching details; hide tails on backside --
or use non-stitched front.
E. Layer "31" disc with contrast disc, sawtooth disc,
large disc into a unit, using center circle as alignment.
F. Prepare rosette: review steps in similar project
by searching "rosette" in this blog.
G. Layer front medallion assembly onto rosette, then
mount over the hole punch in overlay.
H. Prepare the banner by attaching "Halloween" and
"happy" word cuts; attach to bottom area of card.

1. Identify and cut the shapes:
A main box body (2-3 panels joined at side seam)
B circles closure build up: 2 large & 2 small for each
C tag assembly: base, oval, skull, bar
2. Layer the two closure discs by gluing the two
large circles together. Take care that edges line up.
3. Layer the two small closure discs in the same way.
4. Align the small stack under the large disc stack,
and glue together.
This provides a little clearance to wrap twine.
5. Prepare to attach the flap disc by cutting 
a length of twine (or perle cotton as used in model),
gluing it in place at the circle punch, then
gluing the disc assembly over the twine in place
Also position and attach the second disc assembly
on the body.
6. Position and attach the regular size eyelet or stud
to secure each disc in position.
7. Assemble the skull tag by layering
and attaching the bar at top of tag where
edges align, disc over bar where upper
edges align, then center skull in place.
8. Position and attach assembled tag on the
"front" of the box body.
9. Fold the sides around to back, overlap
to guide hash marks (small cuts at upper
and lower edges of panels), and glue in place.
10. Complete box assembly by bending
bottom side tabs inward, bending and tucking
large bottom flap into box behind back panel.
11. To deliver card, insert into the box top,
fold side tabs inward and top flap down.
Wrap the twine in figure 8 to secure.
Here is the completed envelope box.

Jack O Lantern Hidden Gift Card

Grinning Jack has crescent layers front 
with top layer recesses or shapes to allow 
smile and crinkle eyes to fit in. 
Built up layers front and back allow for a hidden gift card 
holder with stem at top to slide inside. 
Measures approx. 5.75" wide x 5.875" tall when closed. 

ASSEMBLY: 1. Identify and cut the shapes:
A main card back panel   B main card front panel ("F" cut)
C main card build up shapes (5)
D slider back   E slider build up (3)
F stem back build up  G stem front build up
NOT SHOWN: stem accent build up shapes (5)
H stem accent front
I accent front base (show-thru)  
J crescent accent bases
K crescent, eyes and smile accent fronts
2. Assemble the main build up shapes by layering
one by one and attaching together, taking care
to line up all cut edges as precisely as possible
as each is joined into the stack.
NOTE: it will be helpful to press these under
a flat weight during the drying process to
minimize or eliminate curling and warping.
3. Position and attach the backside of the buildup
assembly on the backside of the main card back shape,
taking care to line up the edges that correspond
as precisely as possible (continue this attention
to edge alignment throughout).
4. Position and attach the main card front
over the buildup/back assembly.
5. Position the side accent crescent base shapes
onto the front of the accent base (show thru) shape,
lining up curved outer edges, and attaching in place.
Position and attach the center "crescent" in place
evenly centered between the side crescents.
6. Position and attach the top side crescent shapes
over the previous accent assembly. Then . . .
. . . position the upper front accent in place over
the middle crescent base, position and attach smile
tucked snugly into the corresponding cut edge
of the upper middle crescent, then
position and attach the lower portion.
Doing the assembly in this order will assist
in ease of fit of the smile.
Position and attach the eye accents into
their respective depressions.
8. Position and attach the accent front assembly
onto the main card assembly, with even
offset margin of main card showing all around.
9. Prepare the slider build up by aligning
and attaching the three window shapes
in the same manner as the main card
build up, taking care to line up cut edges.
10. Position and attach the build up over the
backside of the slider base.
12. Position the front and back
stem build up shapes onto the assembly,
aligning the edges that correspond.
13. Position and join the stem accent shapes
into a stack, all edges aligned.
14. Position and attach the stem stack to the
slider assembly, lining up the lower edges
with the bottom edges of the slider stem build up,
and offsetting evenly at other edges.
14. Position and attach the surfaces that touch
of the accent stem onto the stem accent build up.
NOTE: this stacked stem build up will allow
the stem of edges of the slider to
slide into place with clearance for the top of
the jack o'lantern accent build up.
15. Complete final assembly of the hidden gift card
holder by inserting the bottom of the slider into
the channel of the pumpkin assembly . . .
. . . and slide into place with the stem accent
lower edges overlapping above the surface
of the crescent accents.
While the slider is in "open" position,
insert card into slider recess,
then re-close the card.
Here is the completed Jack O'Lantern
with stem and slider in closed position.