Welcome to my NEW BLOG!

Cindi Bisson - Fat Cat Creations is now Cindi McGee - Behind These Eyes™. Since I've been on this creative journey for over 18 years - I have a LOT of project links out there in cyberworld! If you are looking for a particular project you have found on Pinterest, Facebook, FaveCrafts, HomeTalk, Twitter, etc. and the link is not working for you, please feel free to email me at cdjb11@yahoo.com and I'll be sure to get you the new link to the instructions. Have a creative day and remember to DARE TO BE DIFFERENT!

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Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Busy, busy, busy!

Hope everyone survived the holidays!   Things are in high creative gear here in my studio - I've cleaned and reorganized and am now busy preparing for the upcoming CHA in LA where I'll be doing a make & take project at Makin's Clay, my project for the Designer Craft Studio, and especially preparing for all the awesome things When Creativity Knocks has up it's sleeve for the event!   I'm also working on a piece for donation to the charity auction to be held at CHA.  Mix in my weekly Simple Solutions articles and Product Reviews, and you have creative madness :0). My recent Simple Solutions articles include creative holiday tablescape displays and lots of mini hand-made tree options.  New Product Reviews include Teresa Collin's Noel Collection, Graphic 45's Christmas Past Collection, Scor-Buddy, and Creative Beading, Vol. 5.   View them all at http://www.whencreativityknocks.com/

The two most recent episodes of When Creativity Knocks offer creative holdiay fun - but SantAna's Caramel Corn is so delicious it would be a crime to limit it to the holidays!  Check them out here:

SantAna's Caramel Corn:  http://tinyurl.com/3aepfxk
SantAna's Clever Ornaments:  http://tinyurl.com/35s9dl8

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Holiday Balls!

My latest appearance on When Creativity Knocks is in this week's Cindi's Holiday Balls episode!  Learn the thrifty secret to creating decorative balls for almost any season......http://tinyurl.com/34z74f8

In Simple Solutions this week I share another idea for creating "natural" holiday mini-trees, and my product review is of Teresa Collins Noel Collection! http://www.whencreativityknocks.com/

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Sizzix Triple Play Blog Hop Week #7 - Eileen Hull's Treat Bag Toppers

I, like all the other designers participating in this amazing Sizzix Triple-Play Blog Hop, can’t believe it’s over! Our last challenge was to create something using Eileen Hull's Sizzix ScoreBoards XL Die - 656774 - Treat Bag Toppers - http://www.sizzix.com/product/2484 

I know these are supposed to be treat bag toppers, but my mind, (gee, what a surprise) went a bit out of the box on a couple of them! The first project is a card for a friend – I saw this piece and my muse instantly thought – PURSE! Gift card holder! Oh boy! Steampunk Debutante papers from Graphic 45, combined with some tan snake-skinned textured paper used to cover the “purse” inside and out (and beneath the verse on the front), and a few buttons – were all it took to transform this into a silly card to surprise a friend. I mounted the back portion of the die (without the handle) to the back top inside of the card, which allowed the front (with the handle) to flip up to reveal a pocket for the gift card.

Next, I created an “almost” treat bag……The scalloped edge and overall shape of this reminded me of a rooftop – which lead to this folded cardstock gingerbread house, embellished with colorful candy-toned papers from Junkitz.  This fun card is a easy way to create a unique holiday greeting using just the treat bag topper, cardstock, patterned papers and just a few minutes of your time.  It flips open in an upside down matchbook style to reveal a hand made gingerbread dough ornament (but you could also include a real gingerbread man inside a baggy instead!).

Lastly – my muse was thinking of animals again…. At least this time it wasn’t FEET – it was the whole animal…… when I saw this little oval with the “scalloped” edges, the absolute first thing that came to mind was MOUSE! It looks like a MOUSE! I cut off the left pointed/scalloped edges to created a rounded mouse butt (yes, I said mouse butt). I covered the mattboard die with gray glitter cardstock from DCWV, and popped up the ears a bit using Elmer’s foam tape. A glitter cardstock nose, thread whiskers, giggly eyes, a red yarn tail, and a Santa hat made from fabric scraps finished him off. He matches this adorable paper from Nikki Sivils Scrapbooker North Pole Nights collection just perfectly! I used a Sakura gel pen to write “Merry Christ-Mouse” on the front and layered the patterned papers with green glitter cardstock. Absolutely silly, I know – but I couldn’t resist!   (Especially when I photographed the card next to this little Christ-Mouse ornament I made when I was about 10 years old!)

There were more great pieces included in this set of dies – but I’ve horded those away to save for future projects……. If you need even more creative inspiration visit the other 60 designers participating in this blog by following the Sizzix Triple Play Blog Hop link in the upper right of my home page. Thanks for stopping by each week to view my versions of these dies – and THANKS to the amazing designers of the dies themselves – Eileen Hull, Karen Burniston, Brenda Pinnick, and of course, SIZZIX, for offering such an amazing opportunity to experiment with these dies and share our projects with the creative world!

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Sizzix Triple Play Blog Hop Week #6: Brenda Pinnick's Sizzix Bigz XL Die - Album, Brackets

Another fun die to experiment with courtesy of Brenda Pinnick and Sizzix! 


656053 Brenda Pinnick Sizzix Bigz XL Die - Album, Brackets - http://www.sizzix.com/product/1548
Felt from National Non-Woven - www.nationalnonwovens.com
Patterned Papers from Harmonie Loisirs Creatifs www.loisirsharmonie.ca/
Elmer's Craft Bond Adhesive - http://www.elmers.com/
Cropodile Punch from We R Memory Keepers - http://www.weronthenet.com/
Blumenthal Lansing Buttons - http://www.blumenthallansing.com/
I completed three projects for this die from Brenda Pinnick - but I have another 3 still awaiting completion!  At first, I was stumped - probably because I had not LOOKED online at Sizzix.com to see exactly what this little assortment of dies was supposed to be.  I just opened the bag, pulled them out and let my creative muse run free.   The first thing I designed was a collapsable Christmas tree ornament/Christmas card - 6 of the smaller, inside "squares" cut in half diagnonally, and reattached using adhesive tape to create the individual flaps on the ornament.  Each side of each flap was covered with additional squares cut in half diagonally, made from coordinating patterns of beautiful holiday paper from a wonderful new company I discovered at CHA - Harmonie Lois Creatifs.  A stamped greeting, golden flourish stickers and decorative faux gemstone metal brads also from Harmonie were used to embellish each side of the pages.  A Cropodile was used to punch a hole in the top, and a length of gold cording serves as the hanger for the ornament. The flaps fold flat so the card can be mailed in a regular sized envelope - then the recipient can unfold the flaps for a 3-D card/tree ornament.

While creating this, I noticed that the shape of the die itself was an almost perfect match to the shape of some of the vast array of patterns of scrapbook paper available from Harmonie!  So I began cutting photo mats using the larger squares from coordinating papers to create layouts.....

A small felt inner square was used as pocket to hold "Thankful Strips" on this Thanksgiving layout (also made with Harmonie papers!) 

Then I actually went to the Sizzix site to see what this die was originally intended for - and I discovered it was an amazing mini book!  I used two felt shapes as covers for a mini book, filled with winter snow themed papers from Harmonie to create a mini book that tucks into a pocket on this layout (which also features the same shaped on the background paper!). A few Blumenthal Lansing buttons were the finishing accents.  

For lots more inspiring ideas using this fun die from Brenda Pinnick & Sizzix - view the blogs of the 60 participating designers via the link in the upper right corner of my page.   Thanks for stopping by! 

Newest holiday episode of When Creativity Knocks is here!
In this fun episode shot on site at Maker Faire in NY, Ana Araujo shows you how to create fun ornaments using DIY Bangles!  http://tinyurl.com/25moom8

This week, Ana also shares a fun way to make tiny tinsel trees, Laura Bray shares a great way to repurpose those plastic cookie & fruit boxes you get from the grocery store,  in Simple Solutions I share the next installment of my Tree Time series featuring pine cone trees from mini to unexpectly large..... and my Product Review is about a great Creative Beading book published by Kalmbach Publishing.    Check them all out via the links on our home page:  http://www.whencreativityknocks.com/

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Sizzix Triple Play Blog Hop Week #5: Karen Burniston's Gift Card Holder w/Phrase, For You 3-D

My twist for this clever pop-up give card holder designed by the ever kinetically-creative Karen Burniston is this masculine "tool time" Birthday card.  I turned the pop up gift card holder in to a red tool box which holds a gift card to a popular home building supply chain.....

The card itself is accordian style, it folds down to fit inside an envelope, then opens to stand on a table, etc.  Sizzix alphabet dies used to cut the stand up "Birthday Wishes" on the top edge.  The "For You" tool box pops-out from the last panel to present the gift card to the recipient :0).   Stamped tools on real sandpaper mats add a little texture.


Karen Burniston's Sizzix Bigz XL Die - Gift Card Holder w/Phrase, For You 3-D (Pop-Up) - 656740 -
Sizzix Alphabet Set - (Another of my trusty favorites....although not available currently, sorry!)
Assorted cardstock, tool patterned paper (brands unknown)
Elmer's Craft Bond Adhesive
Stampin Up! Tool Stamp Sets
Stewart Superior Noir Black Palette Inkpad
X-Acto Scissors
Don't forget to check out over 60 other amazing versions of this pop-up die by clicking on the Sizzix Triple Play Blog Hop link in the upper right corner!
The latest episode of When Creativity Knocks is this adorable MAILABLE Christmas stocking!     Here's the link to see how Ana Araujo created this fun option for your holiday greetings:    http://tinyurl.com/2wo8wzv

A four week series on home-made holiday trees started this week too.  See my weekly Simple Solutions article for each new installment (and learn the secret inside on December 10th!)   http://tinyurl.com/32nwsk5

Classic Chain Mail Jewelry by Sue Ripsch is the latest installment in my Product Reviews category:  http://tinyurl.com/366kahb  I  also shared a set of copper chain mail earrings I created following the instructions in this book.

Until next week........ keep creating!