Sunday, April 13, 2014

Luscious Lemon Layer Cake

Lemon Layer Cake 

I'm no food photographer by any means. Nor a baker, for that matter. But my husband made me a beautiful lemon layer cake and I took some pictures just because it was so pretty!  Doesn't it look yummy?  (It was!)


Lemon Layer Cake_slice

He is a big fan of America's Test Kitchen recipes, and that's where this one is from.  Just make sure you listen to their advice about letting the lemon filling set up long enough, or you'll get something like this:
my-birthday-cake_web

(This is what his first attempt was like, two years ago. Ha! Ha!)   Have a great day!

Saturday, April 12, 2014

DIY Giant Magnet Board for Cards

Giant magnet board for cards

This is a project I’ve wanted to make for a long time, and I had to recruit my husband and his workshop to help me. He was excited about this magnet board, too, so he was very willing to help. We wanted a place where we could put up the various cards the kids and I have made for him over the years.

This magnet board is quite large to fit a very big and very bare bedroom wall. We picked up a thin sheet of 4’ x 3’ galvanized steel at Home Depot, two yards of brown fabric at JoAnn’s, and everything else was already in hubby’s garage.

He wanted to make it thick and substantial to give it depth against the wall, but not be overly heavy. He built a backing for the metal sheet by layering ¼” plywood, a narrow frame to give depth, and then another layer of ¼” plywood where the fabric could be stapled and wall mounting parts could be attached. To lighten the load, he cut out holes in the back piece of plywood which would not be seen in the finished project.  The whole thing is about 48" wide x 36" tall x 1.5" thick.

Magnet board layers

Giant magnet board back

Then he used a brad nailer to attach the metal sheet to the wooden base (the solid side without cutouts). He also used some protective tape to keep the edges from snagging the fabric.

Magnet board steel sheet

Giant magnet board before fabric

Protective wrap on edges

At this point it was ready to attach the fabric. We laid the fabric, wrong side up, on a large work surface and placed the metal side of the back board against the fabric. (We trimmed the fabric down so it had an equal amount extended beyond the frame on each side--about 6".) He pulled each edge tight as he nailed the fabric in place, saving the corners for last.

Magnet board fabric stapled

We actually cut away some of the fabric on the corners so we could make a nice, tight corner that wasn’t bulky.

Fabric corners

He attached picture-hanging hardware to the back and hung it on our wall. You can see it has some nice depth to it. We’re just using small but super-strong magnets to hold the cards in place. It has been fun to have this in our room to display and enjoy our handmade cards. Now that we have such a nice place to put them, I can make a whole bunch more for him!

Giant magnet board side view

Friday, April 4, 2014

New Silhouette Studio Software (version 3)

Have you heard all the buzz with the major upgrade Silhouette Studio has just gone through?  Version 3.0 of Studio has just been released (hopefully it will be easier by now to download it; the first day was crazy!).  That means I'll be doing my best to bring you new tips and tutorials.  Suddenly most of my tutorials for version 2 are outdated, so I'm going to do my best to show you what's new in version 3 as I learn it myself.

You can read about the changes here and here.

My initial impression is that there are some great new features we will all love.  Of course there are a few bugs at the moment, as with any major software release, but hopefully those things will be straightened out soon.  If you do have problems, Silhouette Support is ready to listen and to help.

I haven't had much time to play with it yet, but these are the things I already love:
  • Polygon tool.
  • Ability to see both basic options and advanced options at the same time. This is so great (I didn't even know I needed that one until I saw it).
  • Layers you can rename and move. Yay!
  • They brought back the custom grid colors. That wasn't a big deal, but I missed it when it disappeared before.
  • Scroll bars on the side for when all the info doesn't fit on the screen.
  • Nesting tool.  This is going to be great for both saving paper and for its design possibilities.
 If you're not excited about the new version yet, you can also watch Silhouette's YouTube video.  And as always, if you have a question about your Silhouette machine or the software, please ask me in the comments and I'll do my best to help.

Update 4/12/14:  Word on the street is that the fixes for version 3.0.293 will be released in an update within the next few days.  If you already have been using the new 3.0 version and are having some technical difficulties, help is on the way!  If you are playing it safe and sticking with a "legacy" version (2.9.45 or earlier), keep it for now and you'll soon hear when people are satisfied with version 3.

I've been using version 3 all week, and other than little glitches I like it quite a lot.  I've been working on a couple of tutorials for the Cut Settings window, but some of that is supposed to change with the updated update coming soon, so I'm waiting to see the final format before I share screen shots with you.

Thursday, April 3, 2014

Silhouette 2014-2015 Design Team

Silhouette America has just announced their design team for the next year, and I'm thrilled to tell you I'm back on it!  I have loved the past six months with the original design team, and I know I'm going to love this coming year.  Hopefully you will enjoy what I have to offer, along with these other talented ladies.

 photo 4c23b3f9-7fdd-4e4e-9ea8-27ff71c7fe27_zpsb55ba1fc.png (That's me at the top next to the logo.) Over the next couple of weeks we will each be spotlighted so you can get to know us a little better. Read more about the announcement HERE.

P.S.  Have you heard that Silhouette has released a new major update to the Silhouette Studio software?  Version 3 has a lot of changes, so bear with me while I make notes on all of my older tutorials that only apply to versions of Studio before 3.0.  You can download the new version HERE (the massive amount of users trying to download it these first few days may mean you need to be patient when trying to get it).

Thursday, March 27, 2014

Desk Organizer

Desk Organizer by Kelly Wayment for Silhouette 

Here's a desk organizer I made for the Silhouette blog as part of the design team. You can read about it HERE.  The announcement will soon be made for the new 2014-2015 Silhouette America Design Team, so you may or may not see me more over there.

I took this organizer to work this week and put it on my desk in my office.  It's such a cheerful piece to have there!  Happy crafting!

Friday, March 21, 2014

Retirement Bendy Card

Retirement Bendy Card by Kelly Wayment

Happy Retirement, Dad!

Even when searching on Pinterest (my go-to source for inspiration), I had trouble finding a retirement card that really grabbed my attention.  So I made my own with a bendy card Silhouette cutting file.  All the details and links to the shapes I used for this bendy card are on the Silhouette America blog.  (And for just one week Silhouette users can buy the whole bundle of shapes I used at a discount!)

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Fabric Wrapped Canvas with Quote

bridal shower gift_make a new ending HTV

bridal shower gift_best thing 2

Wedding season is upon us!  I attended two bridal showers this week and love making handmade gifts, so these are my gift of choice this season.  Let me tell you how I made these fabric-wrapped canvas panels with quotes.

I bought a 3-pack of 11"x14" canvas artist panels a while back to make my I Love You Because chalkboard.  They are great for wrapping with fabric and placing on an easel.  (I've seen wall-mounted, fabric-wrapped canvas that uses the canvas stretched over a frame, but the flat panels are cheap and easy for this project.)

I simply laid out the ironed fabric and placed the canvas panel on top of it (face down), then trimmed the fabric down to 2-3 inches larger than each side.

fabric wrap canvas_initial overlay

I hot glued each edge (save the corners for last) on the back side of the panel and pulled the fabric taut as I placed it down on the hot glue.  Working with one edge at a time, I put glue all along the edge of the panel about 1/2" wide before pressing the fabric down on it.

fabric wrap canvas_hot glue

Once the edges were glued in place, I trimmed the fabric down to an even 1 1/2" on each side.  You can probably do this before gluing, but I liked cutting off any frayed edges that occurred during the pulling and gluing.

fabric wrap canvas_back finished

I then focused on the corners.  I glued down the corners with more hot glue, trying to keep them nice and uniform.  I'm not too worried about what the back looks like, but I'm sure more can be done to make it look nice if the unfinished back bothers you.  I did put a square of white paper on the back with a note to the couple, which covers the orange manufacturer's label.

fabric wrap canvas_corner

I found two beautiful quotes on the Silhouette online store so I could personalize each piece.  One bride-to-be is a 30-something woman who is getting married for the second time, and one bride-to-be is a 20-something college student who used to babysit my kids, not so long ago.  They both listed grey in their home colors, so one piece of fabric did the job for both.

I used Silhouette black flocked heat transfer vinyl for one, and a pretty turquoise flocked heat transfer vinyl for the other.  The black has a little more pop against the grey background, but the turquoise has a pretty sheen to it depending on the viewing angle.  Both have a luxurious feel!  I like them both.

Working with heat transfer vinyl is very easy.  You simply mirror the image you want to cut and then use the recommended settings in Silhouette Studio to cut it.  I was able to fit my designs into a 9" wide area for this 11"x14" panel, so the 9" wide vinyl roll was great.  You can cut directly on the vinyl without a mat, but I needed almost the whole 9" area so chose to use my 12"x12" cutting mat in order to use every inch possible of the material.  (You lose some space on each edge when the rollers are moved in to grip it without a mat.)

My Cameo cut the flocked HTV (heat transfer vinyl) beautifully, but my choice of 100% polyester for the grey fabric led to a little more work in getting the HTV to stick to it.  Anything less than the cotton setting wasn't hot enough to activate the vinyl, but I was worried it would burn the fabric.  In the end I just had to press harder and hold my iron down longer to get the HTV to stick to the polyester, as opposed to plain cotton fabric.  (I did use a cotton setting.)  Once the HTV completely released from the clear backing, I ironed directly onto the HTV quote and the fabric to set it really well.  (I wouldn't use 100% polyester with HTV if it were going to be washed, but for this application I think it's fine.)

make a new ending vinyl closeup

Then it was time to decorate the plain gift bags.  For this plain kraft bag I used this fun man-woman symbol and used Ashley Horton's trick to create my own unique word art with black adhesive cardstock.  I added a little tag with a slice in the loop so I could just hang it on the bag handle.

gift bag wedding

For the second bag, I used white adhesive corrugated paper with the same man-woman symbol and an ampersand.  (It was the leftover piece from my Valentine's Day card.  I knew I would find a good use for it when I saved it!)

gift bag bridal shower


gift bag corrugated sticker

I included a simple easel with each piece, and both brides loved their gifts. These both got passed around the room so everyone could feel the velvety flocked lettering.  And the "make a brand new ending" quote nearly made the bride cry.  Yup, I'd say it was a success.  :)

best thing vinyl closeup

Silhouette Shapes:
Make a brand new ending - vinyl phrase by Kolette Hall
Best thing hold onto... layered phrase by Kolette Hall
Travel tag charms by Snapdragon Snippets
Man woman holding hand symbol by Alaa' K
Ampersand, &, and collection by Kolette Hall