I love quilting and enjoy spending a great deal of time every day creating virtual quilts using Electric Quilt. However, I decided I needed to spend a little bit of time away from quilting to explore expressing my creativity in a new medium.
So, this last year I have taken up card making. I am finding that card making allows me to play with different colors and textures. Some of the same things I love about quilting.
I have become hooked on Stampin Up and have watched a ton of You Tube videos where demonstrators share various techniques to create works of art in their cards. I've purchased a fair number of stamps and the entire collection of current ink pads (because who wants to be missing a crucial color in the midst of card design).
I was so excited when I discovered that Stampin Up offers kits -- which they call Paper Pumpkin.
What is Paper Pumpkin?
Paper Pumpkin is a monthly kit that includes all the supplies necessary to create a series of cards around a different theme each month.
Just like in quilting I found it easy to feel overwhelmed by some of the projects I found on YouTube. Paper Pumpkin solved that overwhelm, because everything you need for your project is included in your monthly art box. All you have to do is open it up and get started. You’ll be able to make cards, treat bags, and so much more from this monthly subscription. It even includes the envelopes for mailing your cards.
Among the items in each Paper Pumpkin monthly craft kit is a set of reusable rubber stamps. So after you’re done creating your monthly craft, you’ll have a valuable stamp to add to your collection. You even get a free clear stamping block with your first craft box. Plus, you get a different color small ink pad every month as well.
January 2022 Kit - Kisses and Hugs
The January kit was Kisses and Hugs. The Kisses & Hugs Paper Pumpkin Kit contained trifold heart-shaped cards. The printed gold foil designs added a timeless touch to these cards that you could use year-round as this kit isn’t bound to just Valentine’s Day—it works for all love occasions like anniversaries, weddings, birthdays, or those “just because” days.
I made one of each of the cards following the instructions in the kit. (There were enough supplies to make 5 of each.)
These were beautiful, but I really wanted to see what else I could design with the remaining supplies from the kit.
To add to the kit, I decided to draft a series of hearts in Electric Quilt 8. And then transferred the designs to Cricut Design Space to save time cutting everything out. My free video this week will take you through the process of drafting a group of hearts using Electric Quilt 8 along with the transfer process. Bonus -- there are two options for transferring the designs.
No Electronic Cutting System: If you don't have an electronic cutting system (Cricut, Silhouette, or Brother Scan and Cut), you could still print out your hearts created in Electric Quilt on cardstock. Just color everything white in Electric Quilt 8 before printing. And you will want to turn on outline patches. Then use your favorite paper snips to cut the designs (never use those fabric scissors for this). :)
The extra piece of software I used for creating the SVGs is Inkscape. Inkscape is a professional vector graphics editor for Windows, Mac OS X and Linux. It's free and open source.
Inkscape can seem overwhelming to use when you open it for the first time. However you only need to use a couple of tools within Inkscape -- so this really is a piece of cake. You can download Inkscape here.
Inkscape will allow you to create an SVG file which may be used in any electronic cutting system (Cricut Design Space, Silhouette Studio, or Brother Canvas Workspace).
So what is an SVG file? An SVG file is a graphics file that uses a two-dimensional vector graphic format. Unlike raster formats such as JPG, GIF, and PNG, an SVG image remains crisp and clear at any resolution or size.
My Paper Pumpkin Alternative Cards
The first two alternatives primarily used supplies from the kit. The only items added were card stock and ribbon.
The remaining cards used some pieces from the kit -- but I added some of the Electric Quilt designed hearts (cut out in a variety of cardstock). I also had some fun with both heat embossing (the sentiments) and dry embossing (the added texture to the paper). Notice that I even cut some of the EQ hearts from some of the card stock in the kit.
I still have a lot of extra supplies from the January kit. I will be doing some additional playing this week before mailing off my Valentine day cards.
If you would like to start card making, I suggest starting with Paper Pumpkin. You don't need to think through a huge list of supply options to figure out what you need first. Everything you need to get started will be in your box. Subscribe by the 10th of any month to receive that month's kit. The first box will even include a mounting block that will work with all the stamps.
Stampin' Up offers both monthly subscriptions and prepaid subscriptions. In both situations, you can pick the months you want to participate. It is super easy to opt out of a month that doesn't interest you.
Stampin' Up prices for Paper Pumpkin will be going up on March 1st. As a result the prepaid subscription is a great value. Essentially you are pre-buying a number of boxes at the current price. Then you can decide which months to apply them to. Click on the links below to purchase any prepaid subscription. The prepaid subscriptions are non-renewing unless you elect to renew.
You may also make any other purchases of Stampin Up products while you are on the Stampin' Up website. If you purchase Stampin Up product using my host code during February 2022, you are eligible for a special thank you gift from me, plus purchasing bonuses from Stampin Up.
Kari's Thank You Gift
Being a quilter, I really love the look of stitched lines around a shape. It could be one of the heart shapes from today's tutorial. Or a square, rectangle or even oval shape for stamping a sentiment. Learn my process for adding those stitched lines to your shapes with an exclusive tutorial for those purchasing with Host Code W7FGRTYW. You must use the host code when checking out with Stampin' Up to be eligible for the bonus.
Tutorial will be sent to you the first week in March.
Bonuses from Stampin' Up
My first card from this set was a "fun fold". It folds up to 5-1/2 x 4-1/4 (standard card size). The bottom section folds down, which means the card can stand up for display purposes. The bird was colored with alcohol markers. The personal sentiment goes on the back. Inspiration was a tutorial by Cindy Brumbaugh.
'Stampin' Up Check Out Process
This quick video will walk you through the check out process. Make sure to enter the host cost W7FGRTYW when checking out. This will ensure you are eligible for the free Inkscape tutorial on adding stitching lines. This will also explain how to add your Sale-a-bration rewards to your order.
Please feel free to send me an email with any questions on your Stampin' Up order. I can be reached at Kari.Schell@onpointquilter.com
If you use Electric Quilt to design either the hearts (or another image) for cardmaking, I would love to see your designs or cards. Feel free to post in the Learning EQ Facebook group using this link.
I was recently made aware of sublimation. Sublimation is a process that mixes specialized ink within the fabric fibers. Think of it as a variation of printing and/or using vinyl on fabric. However both of these other examples put the material on top of the product. With the sublimation the product is infused into the material.
I am doing a deeper dive into the process in the TKQ Masters class this month. However I though I would share a simplified process in this post.
In the video, I decided to decorate a 9 x 7 cosmetic bag. I had purchased some cosmetic bag blanks from Cricut that I used for this project.
Since I own a Cricut Maker and am most familiar with Cricut Design Space, I will include information at the end of the tutorial on my process for transferring the design from EQ to Design Space along with the process for cutting out the design and using an EasyPress 2 heat press from Cricut for the actual sublimation.
The one area that did not work super well for me was the actual transfer of ink from the transfer sheet to the the bag. In hindsight, I should not have included the zipper the pressing area. That caused heat to escape and I ended up needing multiple transfers to finally get the ink infused on the bag.
Here is my infused cosmetic bag.
Do you have experience working with infusible ink or infusible transfer sheets? I would love to hear your thoughts and recommendations on the process.
If you chose to create a sublimation friendly design in EQ8, please fee free to share in the dedicated post in the Learning EQ Facebook Group.
In 2020 I joined a couple of memberships to expand my own crafting capability. I also found it useful to have an opportunity to experience the online learning experience as a beginner. In addition to learning new skills, the experience is helping me enhance the experience for beginners in Tech Know Quilters -- my online program for Electric Quilt 8.
I purchased a Cricut Maker in 2020 principally to work with fabric. I quickly learned that Cricut Design Space is fairly basic software and as a result it can be a challenge to create your own designs with it.
I found that those who wished to create their own designs are using software called Inkscape. Inscape is a vector graphics program that is free. There are versions for both MAC and PC. And it allows us to convert a pdf document into a svg file. You can read more about Inkscape and download a version here.
SVG files can be used by all the major cutting systems including Silhouette Cameo, Cricut Maker, and Brother Scan n Cut. This means if I have any of those systems, I will be able to cut out Electric Quilt blocks and quilts that are printed to a pdf file.
The Inkscape class I am taking is from a company called SVG&Me.
Greeting Card Design
I stumbled across another membership toward the the end of the year on learning to create your own greeting cards. The instructor is big into Stampin' Up products. But I have been challenging myself to take her concepts and apply them to the tools I already have -- Electric Quilt and Cricut Maker.
Today I will share how I used the concepts I am learning in the Confident Cardmaker membership to design my own card using Electric Quilt 8.
The video is focused on creating the EQ card design.
Here is the card/quilt from the video.
After creating the EQ design, I saved it to a PDF file. Imported the PDF into Inkscape. Deleted the stuff I didn't need and saved it as an SVG file. The SVG file was opened in Cricut Design Space and I cut the necessary pieces for my card.
I used glitter cardstock and added a few embellishment in the final card.
I hope this inspires you to design some non-quilt items using Electric Quilt.
Shoot for the Stars with EQ8
Are you just getting started with Electric Quilt 8 and need some help?
Shoot for the Stars is designed to get you started with Electric Quilt 8 through training delivered straight to your inbox. This series includes 14 short (ie. 5-10 minute) videos delivered over the course of a month allowing you to learn the basics of this complex program in bite size increments.
The class is currently on sale for one week at $30 (regular $49). Join now.
In this blog, I will share with you how I turned my virtual quilt into a "real" quilt during a mini-quilt retreat..
I used 2-1/2" squares of five different ombre fabrics and some English Paper Piecing templates for the hexagons. The background is a grey Kona cotton (Dove) . I added a grey ombre for the binding.
Hexagon Templates from EQ to Cricut Design Space
With EQ and an electronic cutting system of your choice, you will never need to purchase English Paper Piecing templates again -- and you will be able to have complete control over the sizes.
I printed the hexagon template from Electric Quilt to a pdf file.
Then I used Inkscape to convert the pdf file to svg. Inkscape is a professional vector graphics editor for Windows, Mac OS X and Linux. It's free and open source. You can download the most current version of Inkscape here.
Once I had an SVG file, I could import it into Cricut Design Space and cut out all my templates using my Cricut Maker. This process would also work if you use the Brother Scan n Cut or Silhouette Studio.
This video will take you through the process of going from EQ to Inkscape to Cricut Design Space.
Modern Hexagon Quilt Construction
I used a number of new techniques (at least for me) to construct my quilt.
This video will take you through the major steps of my process:
Here is an Amazon link to the glue products used in the video.
Here is my finished project (100% completed at my mini-retreat). It feels so good to have had some sew time along with a chance to catch up with some quilting friends. And I could get really spoiled with the four tables per person -- to help us with social distancing.
Last week, some creative modern hexagon designs were shared in the Learning EQ Facebook group. Great job ladies!
I am departing from my normal Electric Quilt post this week. My tutorial will focus on using Cricut Design Space to prepare and cut out my applique block that was created in Electric Quilt 8.
I am now ready to bring the SVG files into Cricut Design Space where I will cut all of my fabrics. I also decided to draw the embroidery lines on my fabric using a washout marker before doing the cut. Adding the embroidery lines made the process much more complex. But the video will show you how to work through issues when what is showing in Cricut Design Space isn't exactly what you thought you sent it.
I then will share actually cutting the pieces on my Cricut Maker.
Before purchasing the Cricut Maker, I was google searching "how small can I cut fabric patches with the Cricut Maker". All the videos I could find on cutting fabric were doing mega large pieces. However, as a quilter, I wanted to be able to do really small pieces. I definitely put Cricut Maker to the test on figuring out how small was "acceptable".
Watch the entire process (with some speed up sections) with my Cricut Maker in this video.
Here is my finished 6" fish motif block. I am heading off to a very small retreat this weekend, where I plan to get a lot of critter applique stitching complete.
And if you were wondering -- I am able to cut pieces as small as 1/4 inch with the Cricut Maker. I could even cut smaller pieces, but when I went to remove them from the mat, they disintegrated as they are only a few threads wide.
Electric Quilt Expert and Educator and Pattern Designer.
On Point Quilter