Saturday, December 31, 2011

New Years Resolution: Paper Style

I have been thinking a lot lately about new years solutions, recording the best things about 2011 and what I hope to be the best things about 2012. Which means with all of this thinking I have been searching on the internet for inspiration…a lot… and I wanted to share some the great paper projects I found with you!

AnniesBlueRibbonGeneralStoreCredit{Image Credit: Annie’s Blue Ribbon General Store}

If you have a New Year’s Party every year then how great are these letterpress drink coasters? Guests can fill them in as the party happens and you can place pictures and journaling on the back and bind them with a small hole in the corner to make a tiny mini-album. Great to bring out at next years party for laugh’s, and possibly a little crying (ha-ha) as you talk about what everyone experienced in the past year. They are available in packs of 8 from Annie’s Blue Ribbon General Store.

designspongecalendarjournal-08{Image Credit: Design Sponge}

This is a fun, and easy way to create a “Best of the Year”or 365 Calendar developed by the Design Sponge for vintage fans. Each index card represents a day of the year to record your favorite daily happenings on with each month separated by a vintage post card. I thought, why not even add little photos, ticket stubs and other favorite things? You can read more about the project and directions at the Design Sponge.

sweetpapertreatswordpress{Image Credit: Brenda Weaver, at Sweet Paper Treats}

How about a New Years Resolution mini-album like this 2010 album by Brenda Weaver? Take a visit over at her blog Sweet Paper Treats to see all the great pictures and project notes she has developed to make your own great mini-album.

RunLucasRunNewYear{Image Credit: Run Lucas Run}

I love this New Years Printable kit by Lindsay over at Run Lucas Run! It features several printable downloads designed to get you thinking about new opportunities for 2012 and also where you are in the present. The image, dear me is a letter to yourself on what is special to you on New Year’s Eve 2011 to be opened on New Year’s Eve 2012. All I can say about this letter writing is what a great idea! Make sure you head over to Lindsay’s blog to read about this project, and download your own free kit!

UndertheSycamoreBestofMyDays{Image Credit: Ashley Ann, Under the Sycamore}

I discovered Ashley’s site via Pinterest the other day and love it! Under the Sycamore is a great place to read about adoption, family and fun DIY projects. Her Best of My Days 2012 notepad is a great project to start and track one statement that captures your day every day of the 2012 year in a fun printable download. Best part? The download is free! So check hop on over to her blog and grab your own Best of My Days Notepad.

AliEdwardsE_OLW{Image Credit: Ali Edwards}

If you are not into the idea of making resolutions, or are perhaps disillusioned by all the resolutions made and never fulfilled you should really check out the One Little Word project by Ali Edwards. The idea is to choose one word to live your life by for the year. You can choose Peace, Love, Reality, Go, Adventure the word is completely up to you. In 2011 Mr. C and I chose the word Eliminate. This word was chosen because our move overseas and the subsequent stuff both physical and emotional that accompanied us was just too much and was preventing us from living our lives the way we wanted! If you want to read more about our Elimination project you can check it out on our blog here.                

AnnaLantsPinterestNewYears{Image Credit: Pinterest}

To help you get started with ideas, and inspiration to reflect and think on where you are in life and your goals for the new year then take a look at Anna Lants Pinterest board for some needed inspiration. Have you used Pinterest before? If not feel free to look around and visit my pinboards at and request a Pinterest invite!

So now that we have all been inspired I just have one thing to say…


Happy New Years Eve from Mr. C., Katie and our little puppy Eggs.


Friday, December 30, 2011

Happy New Year’s 2012 Projects

I am still so surprised that the new year is coming! This last year has been full of so many changes, adventures and love that I sometimes feel like my heart wants to burst with happiness.

Do you ever feel so happy that you feel scared? Scared that you will become used to this feeling and then one day it will disappear and you are left with nothing but thoughts of how happy you once were? This is where I smack myself. If you feel the self negativity of the above statements oozing into your computer screen feel free to reach out and smack me (gently please!) as well.

I smack myself because happiness is something inside of yourself. It is sometimes hard to find, and sometimes so hard to find you are positive that you have lost it but it is there. And one lesson I have learned the hard way? Looking back on some of the happiest times in your life and feeling depressed because you feel like those times are gone and will cause only one thing…unhappiness. So as you read this message know that I am writing it for one purpose to remind myself as we welcome the year 2012 to keep this wisdom close to my heart and to simply…

Be Happy.

One thing that makes me happy? Pretty girls dressed in New Years Day duds! Have you decided on your party accessories for the your New Years Eve Bash? You may be thinking “Katie, I plan on welcoming the New Year by laying on my sofa, eating a giant cheeseball and watching cartoon re-runs…” and I will say…

I hope your laying on that sofa wearing your giant purple 2012 tiara!

Our home party last year included these fabulous numbers below, stitched by my little sister Emily.


The barrettes are so easy and fun to make! All you need is felt, embroidery thread and a small barrette, the metal kind that clamp closed flat. The first step is to stitch the front of your New Year’s Eve felt and then using thread attach the barrette to the back piece of felt pulling taught to ensure it is secure. Finally, attach the front embroidered piece to the back piece of felt using a decorative stitch.

The barrette above used medium blue for the back piece of felt and aqua blue for the embroidered front. The decorative stitch used was a blanket stitch with purple embroidery thread.

You can find more about my sister Emily’s and other family members arts and crafts projects at Five Sisters & Co. And remember…

Champagne even when drank out of a plastic cup on your sofa is still champagne…



Happy New Year!

- Katie

Sunday, December 25, 2011

Merry Christmas 2011!


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Wishing you and your family a wonderful holiday season, and that your Christmas morning is as wonderful and warm as possible!

- Katie

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Paris Field Guide Travel Journal

So I shared yesterday my absolute and surprising love of Paris. One of the things I really loved about the city was the shopping! A shop I really enjoyed this little shop…
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The shop was full of washi tapes, scrapbook papers, books and other fun paper items. It was in this store that I found most of the items that I used in my Paris Field Guide travel journal.

For the cover of the travel journal I found a reprint of an old cashier book and altered the front with mists and washi tape collected from the trip. Our you a Studio Calico fan? Do the other elements look familiar? They are from the Studio Calico Field Guide kit, I thought that the Field Guide kit was appropriate for my one day travel guide of Paris.
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This journal was so fast and easy to make. I took the found book and removed the staples holding the pages in. I then used various sized papers from the Studio Calico Field Guide kit along with the pages that were removed from the book and painted, misted and stitched to my hearts content! I then reassembled the completed pages within the book cover by stitching a center seam to form the binding. To help stabilize the binding I applied washi tape along the outside binding. I also used washi tape to cover the insides of the front and back cover to hide my stitching and it ended up looking great.

My favorite part of the Paris Field Guide travel journal?

I love the personality I was able to convey in the book. Even though some pages don’t have words the color choices and photo finishes are all soft, and romantic like our day in Paris. I also was able to add humor to the book such as this page with the little puppy in the corner, reminiscent of how he looked waiting for his owner.

Next time I go to Paris? I am bringing my sisters!

(see example below *grin*)
- Katie

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Must. Love. Paris.

Will I have readers boo if I state that I have never really had a dream to go to Paris? I want to walk the Great Wall of China, go on Safari, stand at the top of the Grand Canyon and marvel at the wonder of Russia. Paris just seemed…slightly over-done.

Can we say I am now eating my words?

Mr. C. and I went on a 24 hour day trip to Paris and were so impressed! The architecture, the history, the perfect tree lined streets and warm croissants.


You may now be wondering if we had no real desire to see Paris why go? Well …

If an adventure presents itself then go on the adventure!

We had such a wonderful time, we cannot wait to go back! The best part? While the moving overseas process was hard I love that we can now leave home in the morning, visit Paris and be back home on the same day!


When we returned home from this fabulous city I just had to create a custom travel journal with all of the little finds from the city…washi tape, vintage journal prints and fun little travel items. Make sure you to stop by the blog tomorrow to see all the travel journal details!

DSC_0198    Mr. C. and I together…enjoying the best croissants ever and enjoying a day simply being together.

- Katie

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

In the Madness of the Moment

Do you ever find yourself at an event, or in a store when something that you never thought you needed or even wanted suddenly becomes your most immediate desire? Like the girl who goes to a party where all the women enjoy reading mysteries and immediately stops on the way home to buy a mystery book. She awakes the next morning only to wonder, why did she buy a mystery book when she hates mysteries? Or the girl while content and happy with her $20 purse at home, upon travel to Milan, Italy realizes that her life won’t be complete without a designer bag. Suddenly her nose is pressed against the glass staring at the Louis Vuitton, Prada and Gucci stores brimming with delights that she is sure will fit the bill instead of seeing the beautiful city sights she had been waiting for.

Why do we do this? From the time we are kids wishing, hoping and pleading on a whim for the Barbie our girlfriend at school has, to the future where we are still repeating the same pattern of behavior. Is it because not having these immediate gratification items causes us to feel less “worthy” than the others around us who possess them? Is it because standing out from others makes us uncomfortable? Or is it simply us, becoming lost in the beauty and desires of the moment?

Whatever you call it jealousy, group think, ego, pride, lack of will power it is something I want to fight. The feeling inside when I leave an event where I compromised my values simply because, “Everyone else was doing it!” The sick feeling in the pit of my stomach when I realize the immediate gratification purchase put me over budget for the month. The simple fact that my need to stop at the store for some momentary need caused me to be late for someone important to me. These feeling are, 

just. not. worth. it!

Me holding up my $20 purse in front of the Louis Vuitton store, a visual aid to always remind me of what is really important. Family, love, kindness and living your life by your values and dreams…not by the madness of a moment.

Monday, December 12, 2011

Fiber Shopping in Lithuania

I was excited to visit Lithuania, one because it’s a foreign country and a member of the Baltic states (can we say beautiful architecture?) and two because of this article Lithuanian Knitting Traditions in Knitting Traditions 2011 by Interweave Press. The magazine features patterns of Lithuanian origin and details the travels of Donna Druchunas and her fiber shopping adventures. Have I mentioned how much I love knitting?
I immediately visited, checking their knitting store database for places in Lithuania…reflecting back on this, it was unnecessary. Upon arriving at the airport I picked up a city map and on it saw a big advertisement for Vilnos Namai. This store is great the color selections, and raw wool was great…but the best part was the price. We are talking over 1 kilogram (which is 50 gram skeins x 20) of various wool types and colors for less $45 dollars (35 euro)!
I visited the first day, and the second day and really wanted to go back the third day but managed to hold myself back. I could make the excuse that the location was the main reason I was attracted, sitting right in the heart of the old town next to the Vilnius Cathedral and the beautiful Christmas tree but this would be a lie. I am simply very, very obsessed with fiber.
If you are a not a knitter but love the look of wool garments and art you should check out the various wool art shops. I spent a good hour (ok probably hour and a half) in one of these shops laughing with a friend and according to the shop girl exclaiming “oh wow,” at crazily frequent intervals. Hats, jewelry and even clothing are on display for amazing prices.
In the end I am very thankful that I was able to visit this wonderful city to see their wool fiber crafts first hand. If you have the chance to visit this city make sure that you take the time to stop in some of the stores for a wool adventure!
- Katie

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Pretty Little Studio Giveaway Winner!


The winner of the Pretty Little Studio Holiday Blog Hop giveaway, picked by is…

Number 22, PerezMom

perezmom said...

Great project!

Thanks to everyone who came by for the blog hop and left a nice comment, and especially to everyone who started following, I really appreciate it!

If you did not get a chance to check out the great projects in the Pretty Little Studio Design Team blog hop you can check it out here.

Have a wonderful day, and congrats to Perezmom at Some Scrap Sugar!

- Katie

Monday, December 5, 2011

December Daily on the Road

I find that taking the time to record your day, is always a challenge, but taking the time to do it every day while traveling?

It’s extra-challenging, super-dangerous and really fun!

Ok, maybe not dangerous though the security inspectors at the airport may find some of the sharp scissors I own dangerous so I am not stretching that far, right?

DSC_0152blogDecember Daily on the Road, In Progress

While not entirely dangerous journaling on the road can limit your creativity in the traditional sense. No large craft table, sewing machine or paints available. You log into the internet using free internet at the airport or hotel and find the multitude of beautiful December Daily journals being created…and you feel…discouraged. This is not the time to be discouraged! Journaling on the road is a great way to take your creativity to the next level and think outside of the box. So if you are on the road a lot this December, or are simply feeling discouraged looking over other December Daily creations don’t give in, keep creating.

The important part of this project is not to create the perfect December Daily, but to record your daily activities and traditions to laugh over, reminisce and reflect upon in future years.

Here are some ways that I have used to create and journal on the go:

1. If you are really limited on time and luggage space use your computer to type a quick summary of your day, or record a conversation with a local national that meant a lot to you. File the jotted notes into the same location as the photos you are taking. When you arrive home you can print or hand-write the items into your scrapbook.

2. Leave your supplies at home…only bring the basics, a scissor and a pen. This will encourage you to scour the city looking for items to use in your creation. My recent trip to Paris resulted in a old Post ledger, washi tape and some postcards, I will be posting the awesome creation I made with these supplies later!

3. Create a pre-made journal, such as my Italia week journal and bring washi tape, scissors and a few pencils and pens to create a travel smash book/art journal.

For my December Daily entries this week I chose to bring my completed ring binder, washi tape, hole punch and scissors to Lithuania. My goal is to journal on the go and hole punch various brochures and tape in receipts and other fun items I find. Then when I arrive home I can add pictures and it will be complete!

Some items I have collected so far include the brochure from the Prague Christmas market.


I did not hole punch this one as I need my sewing machine to complete this page! For the time being it is carefully tucked into the album while traveling.

I also picked up several great items here is Vilnius, Lithuania. You can see in the photo below that the top ten Vilnius book was hole punched and added.


By the way, we are having a great time in Lithuania so far…I even got my picture taken with a Lemur! At least I think it was a Lemur, poor stuffed little guy!


- Katie

Saturday, December 3, 2011

Prague Christmas Markets

Wow…I cannot believe how many of you stopped by during the Pretty Little Studio Blog hop… If you have not had a chance to check it out, please go here and enter to win a Pretty Little Studio Gift Card by leaving a comment. You have until December 5th to enter!

Today I am out walking the streets of Prague with my friend Elizabeth… we will have bags with knitting, a thermos with cocktails and pockets full of money for Christmas market shopping fun.


Have I mentioned how much I love the city of Prague? I am pretty sure I have…in fact I think my post during my last visit to Prague, here about sums up my feelings. I have never been to Prague for the Christmas markets before and am super-excited! If you want to learn more about the Prague Christmas markets visit the Prague Experience or My Czech Republic or come back to visit my blog later this week for lot’s of fun photos and reviews.

P.S. Next time I post will be from Lithuania next week, cannot wait to share!

- Katie

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Pretty Little Studio Blog Hop + Giveaway!



Mr. C. and I are going to be traveling a lot this December. Poland, Czech Republic, Lithuania, Italy and the list continues. To capture all of these adventures I decided that it was time I catch…

…December Daily Fever…


Are you familiar with the December Daily concept? The idea, developed by Ali Edwards is a small book meant to contain a journal entry, photo or scrap from each day in December to remember how you spend the days leading up to Christmas each year. The variations on this idea or as vast as the imagination. Journals, digital books, binders and handmade papers. For my book I chose a 7x9 binder, two 12x12 papers by Amy Tan, various letter stickers and the Pretty Little Studio Jingle Bells Collection.

DSC_0507 copyDay 5

DSC_0512 copyDays 11 & 12

DSC_0513 copyDays 13, 14 & 16

DSC_0515 copyDays 17, 19, 20 & 21

Ready for some more Christmas inspiration from the Pretty Little Studio Design Team girls and chances to win?

Visit each of these blogs for additional holiday projects, and be sure to leave a comment at each stop. Each Design Team member will be giving away a $10 gift certificate to the Pretty Little Studio store, and there will be a grand prize $25 gift certificate awarded to one lucky person who comments on the Pretty Little Studio blog!

Leanne Allinson Blog:
Irit Shalom Blog:
Elise Lindsey Blog:
Kate Codina Blog:
Robyn Schaub Blog:
Jen Chapin Blog:
Katie Cavanaugh Blog:
Karen Lim Blog:
Laura Achilles Blog:
Celine LeGuay Blog:
Mary Jo Johnston Blog:

While you’re here remember to check out the other Pretty Little Studio Projects + Tutorials here on the blog. And remember, if you like what you see please follow!

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- Katie

Friday, November 25, 2011

Italia Week Day Four: Florence

Happy Thanksgiving! Ok…I know technically this post is a day late…but if you have a chance to dance with your husband in Italy vs. working on a blog post…what would you choose?

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Thanksgiving this year was different, no turkey

…just flaming beef at the "I tre pini” restaurant.  Live Italian music, singing, dancing unlimited wine, food and fun.

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We spent the first part of our day in the city of Florence (Firenze in Italy) and it was beautiful!

DSC_0084 copyBrunelleschi’s Dome in the Duomo was simply awe-inspiring.

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The statue of David, the tombs of Michaelengelo, Galieo, Machiavelli and the “Doors of Paradise.”

Then we took a trip to a local leather store, where the demonstrated various leather techniques. Did you know Florence it known for it’s gold and leather crafts? While they tried pretty hard to sell us on items I was asked to be their “model” for the store which was fun,

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how many girls can say they modeled clothes in Italy?

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Some of the tombs in the Santa Croce were so poignant and tragic, simply beautiful.


Happy Thanksgiving from Italy!

- Katie

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