Welcome to my NEW BLOG!

Welcome to my NEW blog! For many years my projects could be found at my previous blog - www.fatcatcreations.blogspot.com. Since my business has evolved and is now known as Cindi McGee - Behind These Eyes™ instead of Cindi Bisson - Fat Cat Creations - I thought this was the perfect time to launch a new blog. Since I've been on this creative journey for almost 16 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!

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

The Chill of Winter - Faux Ice and Snow!

Faux dimensional snow and sparkly ice - these are altered trading card ornaments (with adorable spinning center elements) but these techniques would work for any winter themed project!   Some of my favorite crafting materials came together for these - TaDa Creative Studios Frozen Tozen paper, Epiphany Craft toosl, twine from The Twinery, ICE Resin, Plaid Extreme Glitter and Elmer's products!  Find out how on Rubber Road Adventures - http://rubberroadadventures.ning.com/page/spinning-atc-ornament?xg_source=msg_mes_network



Thursday, December 22, 2011

Peppermint Straw Wreath Ornaments

Inspired by the full size version on the front of Woman's Day magazine - introducing mini Peppermint Straw Wreath ornaments - 

This was truly a SIMPLE project - the most difficult part is cutting the hard plastic straws - and that was made super simple and quick using Midwest Products Easy Cutter tool.   If you use regular striped drinking straws, regular scissors would work just fine.  

Three $1 bags of 12 peppermint striped hard plastic straws from the local dollar discount store were enough to create 7 of these ornaments.   

To make the ornaments, punch or cut a 3” circle from a fun holiday paper.  The paper will show on the back of your ornament so using something festive adds to the fun.   Cut the center from each circle to create a ring approximately 1/2” in width.

Cut several straws into 1" pieces.     Apply Beacon™ Tacky Glue to paper ring, and begin placing pieces of straw around circle as shown.  

Cut several straws into 1/2"  pieces.   Mount smaller pieces of straw over longer pieces on each mini wreath.  

Tie on a length of red & white twine from The Twinery and you’re ready to add your ornament to your plate of festive cookies.   Make a fun coordinated holiday card or tag to share even more cheer. 
 

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Fresh from the oven?


Catch me if you can!  Cork gingerbread men ornaments get a new twist with a  fresh from the oven color thanks to Rit - Find out how to give yours a little oven-baked at the Rit Dye website:  http://www.ritdye.com/blogs/posts/catch-me-if-you-can-gingerbread-man-ornament

Attach him to the front of a hand-made holiday card made with adorable papers from TaDa Creative Studio's Jolly Holly collection and you've got surprise to sure to bring a holiday smile.










Front without ornament 
Inside of card










Sunday, December 18, 2011

Getting Holly Jolly with Rit & JudiKins!


I've got another holiday project featured on the Rit Dye home page - this holiday card shares a couple of techniques for paper crafting with Rit - including a new technique I discovered with two of my favorite materials - Rit Dye and JudiKins Diamond Glaze!

Find the tutorial here:

http://www.ritdye.com/blogs/posts/holly-seasons-greeting-card

Friday, December 16, 2011

Rit and a Reindeer Holiday Card

The Holiday Glitz & Christmas Magic 2011 edition of Rubber Road Adventures ezine is now live - and I've got a project featured.    Rit and a reindeer come together to create a non-traditional card with custom colored card stock to match the Basic Grey patterned paper.    Find the complete instructions here.



http://rubberroadadventures.ning.com/page/rit-dye-technique-reindeer-christmas-card?xg_source=msg_mes_network://rubberroadadventures.ning.com/page/rit-dye-technique-reindeer-christmas-card?xg_source=msg_mes_networkfile://localhost/Users/fatcat/Desktop/RitRedBlueReindeerInside.jpg

Saturday, December 10, 2011

Feathering my Christmas Nest

While looking through holiday issues of some of my favorite print magazines recently, I noticed a few trends.  One was a trend I spotted last January at CHA - birds are still everywhere - even in holiday decorating.  Second, white, shades of blue and silver seem to be quite popular this year.   Following those guidelines I created my Cindi's Simple Solutions project for the most recent When Creativity Knocks Creative Journal Newsletter.  You can view the complete directions on how to make this easy feather tree and mini sparkling birds made with paper from The Robin’s Nest and Silver Roxs and Diamond Glaze from JudiKins here:  

     http://www.whencreativityknocks.com/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=296&Itemid=265  

Here’s a peak at a just a small sampling of the projects that set my creative mind in motion for this project -

From the December, 2011 Issue of Family Circle Magazine


From the December, 2011 Issue of Better Homes & Gardens Magazine 




From the December, 2011 Issue of Real Simple magazine 


If you need some ideas on creating a blue, white & silver tablescape for your holiday celebrations this year - check out one of my Cindi's Simple Solutions posts from last year A Tale of Holiday Tablescapes Past .

Monday, December 5, 2011

Sock Monkey Goes MEOW (or ROAR!)


“Okay....here’s my plan.  If I sit really still, I’ll blend in well now and she might not  notice I’m not a FELINE!”

Anyone who knows me well knows that my favorite color is TEAL and I am obsessed with all cats - domestic and large wild cats like leopards, lions, cheetahs, and tigers.  Combining the two?   Uhhhhh, what?  My motto has always been “Dare to be different” and true to that, my new studio space is painted a lovely shade reminiscent of a tropical sea.   Valance curtains made from Shannon Fabrics Cuddle Fabric in a turquoise blue and leopard print, along with a fun accent pillow, a bulletin board and a mouse pad further pulled together two of my favorite things.   Mix in an eclectic mix of antique furniture (and a few newer pieces out of necessity) and you have a peak at my happy place!

Enter Sock Monkey!  He fit in my studio space just fine as he’s a fun retro toy which goes along with my antique furniture.  But he felt sort of outnumbered among all my cats - pillows, leopard print accents, framed layouts of my cats throughout the years, glass and porcelain cats I’ve collected, and stuffed wild cats given to me as gifts.  First, he sneaked into my stash of Rit Liquid Dye and dyed himself TEAL!  Then, my monkey decided to take the “if you can’t beat them, join them” philosophy and whipped himself up a head to toe leopard costume out of extra leopard print Shannon Fabrics Cuddle fabric from my vintage trunk full of fabric.   Complete with a hat with kitty cat shaped ear covers, a tail cover, and a little nose mask with whiskers, he fits right in now with all my themes, yet maintains his individuality with his fun loving monkeying around! 



This whimsical holiday card was created using JudiKins adorable Sock Monkey rubber stamp - a definite must have item for anyone whose heart sees the charm of these vintage cuddles.  I used the leftover sock scraps after making the monkey and assorted black Blumenthal Lansing buttons to embellish the card.   The teal card stock was made by crumpling a piece of white card stock, unfolding, and then placing into the leftover dye after I dyed my monkey.   I do this every time I dye with the leftover dye and now have quite a stash of colorful custom colored card stock.  Prismacolor watercolor pencils were used to color the stamped monkeys.  The front of the card features a removable sock monkey holiday ornament - made from an oval of natural colored Makin's Clay, stamped with the monkey image, and trimmed with more of the sock scraps.




The Designer Craft Connection blog hop this month is sponsored by When Creativity Knocks, FoxRiver, Rit Dye, and Judikins!    27 Designers received a package of goodies including WCK’s Sock Monkeys Go BanAnas VideoBook, Rockford Red Heal socks, a Judikins Sock Monkey rubber stamp, and up to 3 shades of Rit Liquid Dye of their choice - then their creativity was unleashed and they were challenged to create 27 unique sock monkeys!   The timing of this blog hop is perfect - Sock Monkeys seem to be popping up everywhere - while shopping recently I spotted them taking over the local Cracker Barrel restaurant gift shop!    Yes - that's Santa Monkey on the very top of the tree! 


Click on the Designer Craft Connection link on the right to see all the amazing designs they dreamed up!    But wait, there's more!   You could be a winner! 



Prize Package for One Lucky Reader: 
-Sock Monkeys Go BanAnas WCK VideoBook 
-One (1) sewn Sock Monkey body ready to be stuffed
-One (1) pair of original Rockford Red Heel Socks
-Button Eyes, needle, floss and stuffing
Prize package worth over $40.00
FREE 2012 WCK Sock Monkeys Go BanAnas eCalendar 
Any blog hop reader who goes to When Creativity Knocks and orders: Sock Monkeys Go BanAnas WCK VideoBook will receive a free copy of the eCalendar to be created featuring some of the sock monkeys from this amazing blog hop! 

Things to know about: Sock Monkeys Go BanAnas WCK VideoBook 
  • A history of the Red Heel sock monkey 
  • A new and easier way to make sock monkeys
  • Timesaving hints
    • A detailed sock monkey worksheet
    • Tips on personalizing your sock monkeys
    • Printable PDF directions
    • 26 Full-size sock monkey body and clothing pattern pieces including “Sock Pants”
To enter to win go to When Creativity Knocks.  In the Member Log-In box, click "Create An Account".  Enter the code Sock Monkey.  There is also a discount coupon to purchase the WCK VideoBook Sock Monkeys Go BanAnas.

    Wednesday, November 30, 2011

    Holiday Cards - Many Options

    Have just a few holiday rubber stamps, and a small assortment of cardstock or ink pads?   That does not mean you can’t create a variety of fun holiday cards for your friends and family!   This set of cards uses just one set of stamps (this great floral stamp was from The Stamping Studio), two colors of inkpads, white and one color of coordinating card stock.   Keep it simple with just basic supplies, or take it a step further like I did and use a Krylon gold leafing pen, some gold tone Toner wire, a bit of gold trim, Ranger Inkssentials Crackle, and some twists on shapes and sizes to add interest.  

    Simple square with a pop - plum cardstock cut into a square card, edged with a gold Krylon leafing pen - layered with the flower (used as a poinsettia here) stamped with black and plum ink on mottled off white card stock also edged in gold.  The plum petals are layered with Ranger Inkssentials Crackle for a bit of shine and texture. A coiled wire center adds dimension, as do the bottom petals which were cut from the card stock with an X-Acto retractable craft knife and then allowed to extend over the gold ribbon and stamped verse.

    Tag time!  Create the same flower as above, then cut it from the backing for a poinsettia tag.  Add a stamped verse on a card stock mat an a gold ribbon tag topper.
    Curving door - The card was made with the off white mottled card stock, edged in gold leafing pen.  On the inside back of the card, the image was stamped and embellished as above.  From the front of the card, cut the top portion and remove so the flower shows, leaving a small front to open.  Add the stamped verse and gold ribbon.







    Backwards action - Create the card using mottled off white card stock.  Add a layer of plum card stock to the inside back.  WITH THE OPENING ON THE LEFT, from the front of the card, cut into triangle as shown.  Edge front and back with gold leafing pen.  Stamp floral image and embellish as above.  To back inside of card, add gold ribbon trim and stamped verse.







    Tri-flold - create a traditional tri-fold card (8 1/2" x 5 1/4"high - fold in two ends to meet in center, creating opening.  Edge with leafing pen.  Layer onto plum card stock mat.  Stamp and embellish image as above, allowing the coiled wire to extend over the opening and help hold the card closed.  Add gold ribbon and stamped verse.

    Wednesday, November 23, 2011

    Here Come the Seasonal Decorations!

    papertreesThis was the first of a series of 4 articles I did last year for the WCK Jingle Bells Journal - as we head into the season of seasonal decorating again - I thought I'd take a minute to share it here too - It's a simple, affordable way to add to your stash of holiday decorations! 
    Time for holiday decorations, and time for my creative muse to go into major overtime!  While shopping with a friend this past weekend, some of the decorations at the local mall inspired me to get creative at home.  For WCK's annual Jingle Bells Journal series I’ll be sharing a new version of these fun, simple, holiday trees each week to inspire your creativity!
    Over the years, I have amassed quite a collection of old-fashioned Santa’s and ornaments with the darker tones of burgundy and evergreen being prominent.  I wanted to create some fun, whimsical trees for my mantle, but they needed to stay within the overall color scheme of my other decorations.  Out came my Graphic 4’s Christmas Past collection of papers and I got busy.  Three different sized cones were decorated to create this trio of trees.   (Hint….. these cones have a secret inside…… I’ll reveal the secret on December 10th!)  Begin by selecting double sided paper and cutting it into 1 ½” squares.  How many squares will depend entirely upon how large your cone/finished tree will be. If you are purchasing paper I’d recommend getting a few sheets of each of your chosen patterns.  Gently roll one corner of each square outward/upward to reveal the pattern on the back side (I used a pencil to roll my corner).   Then simply begin at the bottom and hot glue them to your base, overlapping each layer above the one beneath slightly as shown.    If desired, spray finished tree with a clear sealant, give it a coat of Plaid Extreme Glitter for a little shimmer, or add additional charms and embellishments as desired. copy of lollystrees
    I found these fun, colorful whimsical trees created by fellow designer Lolly Chessie on her blog recently (www.LollyChops.com) Lolly created her trees using Brenda Pinnick’s Flower - Beauty Bloom Sizzix die and a combination of fun, colorful papers.  I just love Lolly’s version of these trees!


    Sunday, November 20, 2011

    Ice Resin - Super Star Saturday

    I am honored to be featured in this week's Ice Resin blog in their Super Star Saturday feature!


    You can read my interview here:  http://iceresin.com/icequeen/2011/11/daring-to-be-different-with-cindi-bisson/

    If you haven't tried Ice Resin - try it!  Amazing resin, easy to use - a million creative opportunities

    Ice Resin - Super Star Saturday

    I am honored to be featured in this week's Ice Resin blog in their Super Star Saturday feature!  

    http://iceresin.com/icequeen/2011/11/daring-to-be-different-with-cindi-bisson/

    If you haven't tried Ice Resin - try it!  Amazing resin, easy to use - a million creative opportunities

    Sunday, November 13, 2011

    Feeling Thankful!


    I've got a new project posted on the home page at Rit Dye - Custom dyed burlap, string and buttons coordinate perfectly with autumn patterned paper - Find the full instructions here.

    http://www.ritdye.com/blogs/posts/thankful-you-thanksgivings-day-card

    Feeling Thankful!

    I've got a new project posted on the home page at Rit Dye - Custom dyed burlap, string and buttons coordinate perfectly with autumn patterned paper - http://www.ritdye.com/blogs/posts/thankful-you-thanksgivings-day-card

    Saturday, November 12, 2011

    Mixed-Media Workshop at CHA in Anaheim!

    I am thrilled to announce I am hosting a workshop at the upcoming CHA show in Anaheim this January.  I am working the Independent Manufacturing Partners group and am combining products from 8 manufacturers to create a unique mixed-media art project.  Registration for the class was sold out for 75 participants the first day.  There is a chance that it will be opened to 100 participants, if you are attending CHA and would like to learn sign up for the waiting list to attend - click here:

    https://www.craftandhobby.org/eweb/dynamicpage.aspx?webcode=CHASessionDetail&ses_key=ED0805BF-AFAD-42E8-91AB-8DEC925B6FE0


    This workshop will provide an exciting hands-on experience exploring the broad range of possibilities working with products from eight different manufacturers! Participants in this workshop will create a mixed media keepsake using an extensive collection of high-quality art and craft products. Cindi Bisson has designed a perfect project which is ideally suited for prominent display in your home, office, or for retail display. Participants will be working with products from the 2012 Independent Manufacturing Partners: ClearSnap®, Globecraft Memories, Justrite Stampers, Makin’s Clay®, Robin’s Nest, Rubber Stamp Concepts, ScraPerfect, Westcott Brand Cutting Tools. Professional artists/designers Cindi Bisson, Becky Conley and Deborah Mahnken will be facilitating the workshop, sharing with participants distinctive highlights of the products, and will demonstrate the many creative ways these products can be used collaboratively. This workshop is ideal for retailers aiming to increase sales by cross promoting inventory, and those who would like to learn about a wide range of innovative products from the sponsors.

    Capturing Autumn

    Capturing Autumn - My latest Cindi's Simple Solutions project for When CreativityKnocks is published.  See how simple it is to capture a bit of the season with Ranger Inkssentials, Tsukineko Kaleidacolor inks, rubber stamps, foil tape and more....and share it with a friend -

    Here's the link:

    http://www.whencreativityknocks.com/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=296&Itemid=265

    Enjoy!

    Thursday, November 3, 2011

    Flannel & Corduroy Leaves

    flannelleavesHere's a warm & cozy fall project from a WCK Creative Journal last autumn - but since it's time to start thinking warm and cozy again this year, I thought I'd share for anyone who didn't see it the first time.  The first thing that always pops into my mind when I hear the words warm and cozy is flannel!  I love curling up in flannel pj’s in front of the fireplace (or woodstove when we lived in Maine!) and reading or watching a movie with my family.  I love hugging my sons and husband when they are wearing a flannel shirt.   Since raiding my husband’s flannel shirt stash was highly discouraged (I did try…trust me), flannelleaves1I decided to check out one of my favorite sources for items to repurpose – the local Goodwill Industries Store!  As always, I wasn’t disappointed and came home with two cozy baby shirts in great flannel plaids, a  girls flannel plaid skirt, and a pair of tiny brown corduroy pants I couldn’t resist adding to the mix for a bit more texture.  For less than $3 I had enough fabric to make a lot of leaves and I helped out those in need!
    Once home, I sketched maple and oak leaves onto scrap paper and cut them out (you could  print off a pattern from the internet, or even trace a real leaf!).   The paper patterns were pinned to the fabric, and flannelleaves2then the leaves were cut.  I purposely cut some of the leaves on seams, included buttons, etc. for added homespun texture.   Once the leaves were cut, I used extra embroidery thread I have staflannelleaves3shed in my studio (see, keeping scraps of everything does pay off!) and roughly stitched approximately ¼” from the edge of each leaf, and to create the veins in the leaves.
    The result is a set of almost whimsical, homespun decorations with a warm and cozy feel.  They look great mixed in a basket of pinecones collected from our yard and set outside our front door, or displayed around a pumpkin in our entry way.
    flannelleaves4While this project would work with any fabric – I think the flannel and the corduroy just add to the warm and cozy fun!