Hello, friends.

I am so excited to share something new especially for my scrapbooking and papercrafting friends. I have recently created a VIP Facebook Group just for you! I can hardly wait for you to be a part of the fun we are going to have.



In Michelle’s CTMH VIP Group you will enjoy creative inspiration, learn more about Close To My Heart products, find tips and techniques, be first to know about upcoming classes, workshops, and events, and get in on exclusive specials and give-aways. Yes, there are give-aways! In fact I just gave away a new Sugar Rush Paper Packet, so you are going to want to jump in. There are more coming! I’m even going to do occasional Facebook Live videos and having some special online events. This is closed group, just for my customers, so I can share a some extra special VIP treatment with you. It’s going to be great fun!


Here’s a little sneak peek of my February Sugar Rush Scrapbook Workshop that I posted in the group a couple of days ago. As part of Michelle’s CTMH VIP Group, you will get first looks at what I’m designing and what’s coming next. There are lots of fun things coming!





You can join the group by going to Michelle’s CTMH VIP Group  on Facebook and clicking the “Join” button.


Feel free to invite your friends who might enjoy some creative inspiration, learning new DIY tips, and a place to connect with other people who enjoy scrapbooking and papercrafting. I am looking forward to sharing some creative moments with all of you. If you like scrapbooking, card making, or papercrafting of any kind, you will enjoy being a part of this Group.


If you have questions or need help joining the group, email me at Michelle@SomethingAboutSharing.com.


Note: While I love connecting and sharing ideas with other CTMH Consultants, this VIP group is specifically for my customers and their friends only. Thank you for understanding. 



I have really enjoyed making the new Happy, Happy Christmas album and projects that Close To My Heart has available this month. With one Workshop Guide, one core set of supplies, and a choice of add on project styles, I can make five different personalize Christmas projects. If you have not heard about this fabulous special, you will want to read on to see what it’s all about. Even though these workshop projects are only available in November, there’s still time to get in on this holiday crafting goodness.

The Happy, Happy Christmas special begins with a bundle of goodies and all of the instructions you need to complete five beautiful scrapbook layouts, that’s ten 12″ x 12″ pages. By using a unique set of products to make the pages, they are like nothing else you will have in your scrapbooks. They have a classic, sort of nostalgic, look to them that is really quite fun.

The bundle includes your choice of a D-Ring or Post Bound Album in this gorgeous red, Memory Protectors, and all of the supplies you see shown below. It’s only $69.95 for everything.





These are the five scrapbook layouts that you can make using the supplies in the bundle and following the Happy, Happy Christmas Workshop Guide.














I can see so many different types of photographs on these pages, including old family photos and black and white prints. Talk about scrapbook pages that are perfect for pictures of Christmas present, Christmas past, and Christmas yet to come, these are great.


After making the scrapbook layouts, the Workshop Guide has complete instructions for creating four other optional gifts. I made one of each project style and added photos, so you could see what they look like all put together.



Holiday Display Tray – The Display Trays can hang or sit in easels on a shelf or mantel. They can hold 3″ x 4″ photos or 4″ x 6″ photos that you cut and spread across two sections.






“Tis The Season” Hinged Display Tray – The Hinged Display is terrific for smaller spaces and adding holiday decor on book shelves, desks, fireplace mantels, college dorm rooms, office cubicles, etc. It was so easy to decorate this project. It could be a great gift for lots of people on your Christmas list. I really liked the way this project turned out. (I especially like the picture of Sophie with snow on her nose.)





Magnetic Chalkboard Frame – These frames are really very versatile. I like the chalkboard also being magnetic, so I can write on it and also use magnets to hold things in place. The instructions for this project have you glue everything to the chalkboard, however I put some magnetic sheeting behind a couple of my project pieces to make the whole thing removable and reusable every year. This way I can use the chalkboard all year long. And, if red is not your color, the frame can be spray painted to fit the color scheme you need.





Everyday Life Album – These are fantastic mini albums with easy My Crush pages and pocket Memory Protectors for adding photos and holiday memorabilia. This is a simple slip on cover made from the supplies left over from the bundle and there are lots of pages inside for memory keeping.




These Happy, Happy Christmas scrapbook pages and holiday projects are available in November in a special pricing package, saving 10% on the album bundle and 30-40% on the frames and decor items. That can be really helpful for your own personal memory keeping projects, and great for gifts, too.

On a side note, if you are giving something like the Hinged Display Tray as a gift, you can either add photos to it as you are making it, or you can just put White Daisy Cardstock where the photos would go and let the person you give it to add their own photos.


There are only a couple more days in November, so be sure to visit my website and order your Happy, Happy Christmas Album Bundle while it is still available. The Workshop Guide that goes with it is something you can download from my website, too.  Click here to shop online.


Enjoy your holiday crafting and memory keeping. If you have any questions as you are creating, contact me at Michelle@SomethingAboutSharing.com. I am happy to help.





Can you believe October has already come and gone? It was a very busy month here, but it’s one of my favorites. Every October, since 1994 I host a Close To My Heart Holiday Extravaganza to share DIY project ideas for Halloween, Thanksgiving, and Christmas festivities. For weeks before Holiday extravaganza I create new projects, so that I can share as many new ideas for gift giving, decorating, gift wrap and tags, table settings, card making, mini albums, stocking stuffers, and scrapbooking as I can. It’s my favorite event of the year, complete with Christmas trees, lights, Candy Cane Cookies, and holiday music. I invite my Close To My Heart customers, family, and friends to come enjoy their first Christmas party of the year to kick off the season, and we have so much fun.




Here is just a sprinkling of some of the projects at Holiday Extravaganza this year.























Over the next few weeks, I will be sharing many of these projects with you here on my blog. There will be Workshops in the Boise area that you can attend to enjoy some creative time here making your projects.  For those of you who live long distance, watch for Workshop Kits and Workshop Guides that will be available for many of the project shared at Holiday Extravaganza this year. I am really excited to keep the merriment going and share some projects to help with your holiday celebrations, too.


All of these projects feature Close To My Heart products. You can shop for your crafting and scrapbooking supplies online 24/7 at michelle.closetomyheart.com.



Thanks for visiting my blog, today. If you have any questions, contact me at Michelle@SomethingAboutSharing.com. Watch for more creative inspiration for the holidays coming very soon.




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Recently I shared a project with you creating personalize and customized burlap bags in different sizes for the holidays. It is amazing how many different ways I have seen burlap used in home decor’ projects lately; pillows, wreathes, table settings, advent calendars…just everything this fall. And it looks like it is going to be big into the Christmas holidays, too.

I thought for today I might share tips for creating your own burlap banners. I have been in several quaint little gift boutiques recently and found where you can purchase individual pennants with different letters on them to spell out whatever message you would like to have on a banner. Typically each letter costs about $7.00 each. So to do the banner you see below it would have cost me $49.00.

Knowing how easy it is to create stencils from the negative space left when you cut letters out on a Cricut machine I was sure I could make my own banners with Close To My Heart products that would be much more affordable. The “Give thanks” banner that you see below is the first banner I made. I love it. It was so easy. There’s no sewing required. It’s a quick do-it-yourself project that I’m excited to share with you.


Thanksgiving Burlap Banner


Making the banner myself was a whole lot more cost effective. I spent $1.50 on a half yard of burlap, which was a lot more fabric than I needed to this one banner. The other Close To My Heart supplies I used are Base and Bling Adhesive Strips, Pigment Inks (with 40 colors to choose from), Sponge Daubers, Baker’s Twine or Hemp, and a letters cut from my CTMH Cricut Artbooking Cartridge of choice.


Here are the steps to making your own burlap banner.


STEP 1: Make a triangle out of cardstock that will be the pattern you use to cut out the pennant shapes that will hang from your banner. I used an 8″ x 10″ piece of cardstock, folded it in half lengthwise, and then cut it diagonally from corner to corner. This makes a nice even triangle shape.

STEP 2: Use the cardstock triangle pattern to cut the burlap into pennants. You need one pennant for each letter or word that makes up your final message.

STEP 3: Place a strip of Base and Bling Adhesive all the way across the top edge of each pennant. (See photo below.)  The Base and Bling strips have adhesive on both sides. Once you have placed it across the top you just peel the backing off, fold it over about an inch, and press it down to make the pocket. This is the pocket you will run the Baker’s Twine through to hang the banner. No sewing needed.


Burlap Banner Step 1


STEP 4: Cut the letter stencils using a CTMH Artbooking Cricut Cartridge. The stencils are simply the negative space that you usually throw away. The cutting size for the letter or shape that you use will depend on the size of the pennants you choose to work on. My letters are about 4″ for this project. If you are going to put a whole word on a pennant (like the word “give” on this banner) then that will be cut smaller to make room for the whole image.

STEP 5: Put a piece of waxed paper or scratch paper behind the burlap pennant before stenciling. Place the stencil shape where you want the letter to be and then fill in the letter shape by sponging black pigment ink onto the burlap with a sponge dauber. (See photo below.) Set the letters aside to dry.


Burlap Banner Step 2


STEP 6: After the letters are dry, set the pennants out so that they are arranged in the right order to spell your message. Thread Baker’s Twine, or Hemp, through the pocket at the top of each pennant. This is what the banner will hang from. I attach one end of the Baker’s Twine to a safety pin to give me something larger to hold onto as I am threading it through the pennant pockets.


Burlap Banner Step 3


STEP 7: Add embellishments. I made simple rosettes out of the Close To My Heart Burlap Ribbon and added them in between each letter. The Burlap Ribbon is great to work with. I wanted these flowers a little smaller so I did cut the ribbon in half and gathered the ribbon along the finished edge. (This is important. If you are gathering on the unfinished edge, the ribbon all unravels. Trust me…I speak from experience.)


Banner Step 4


That’s it. Your banner is now ready to hang. Pretty easy, right? You can custom make the size of your banner, personalize the message, mix fonts, and embellishments. I hope you will have fun trying it out and enjoy sharing the project as well.

And just a little reminder, you can stencil with CTMH Cricut Cartridge shapes and pigment inks on just about anything…cork, bags, fabric…so many options. The picture below shows some more ideas. “Autumn” is cut from the CTMH Artbooking Cricut Cartridge and “HARVEST” is stamped with the CTMH Urban Alphabet font using the same pigment ink.


Autumn Harvest Burlap Bag

Autumn Harvest Burlap Bag


If you missed the post about making personalized drawstring bags for the holidays, just click here.


I hope you enjoy adding a little personal touch to your fall and holiday projects.  Add your email address to the “Stay up to Date” box on the left to receive updates on new projects, tips & techniques, workshops, and special offers. There’s a lot more to come for the holidays. 


Happy Holidays and welcome to our Simply Inspired CTMH Blog Hop! This month we are highlighting handcrafted holidays. If you have come here from Krista Hershberger’s Blog, you are on the right path. The blog hop is a great big circle, so you can start here and work your way around to see all of the inspiring artwork. If you get lost along the way, you will find the complete list of participating consultants here.

It’s easy to hop along with us – just click the link at the end of each blog post to move to the next one. Enjoy!


The holidays are a fabulous time to pull out all the stops and get creative with decorating, gift giving, and memory making. However, getting creative does not mean it has to get complicated. I still love faster, simpler, easier, and making the most out of the resources I have to create with. Close To My Heart’s My Creations Burlap Drawstring Bags are terrific for making personalized ornaments, gift bags, decorations, and adding a festive touch to your holiday tables. Combine them with the incredible variety for stencil shapes from CTMH Cricut Cartridges and 40 colors of Pigment Inks and you can tailor your projects for any setting. It’s quick, it’s easy, it’s affordable, and the possibilities are endless.  Here are a few different ways I have incorporated them into my holidays.


Burlap Bag Ornaments


I use the burlap bags like ornaments on my Christmas tree. I personalize the bags by stenciling the first letter of each person’s name on the bag using the negative space from a letter I cut out on my Close To My Heart Artbooking Cricut Cartridge. Then I put a little gift inside, tie it closed with CTMH Black Striped Grosgrain Ribbon, and hang it on the tree from the drawstrings that are already on the bags.


Burlap Bags Christmas Setting


I have also used the same monogrammed burlap bags on table settings for holiday meals. This is kind of like you would use place cards for each guest. There is a monogrammed bag with a goodie inside for each person sharing the meal. If breakfast includes hot chocolate on Christmas morning, then slipping candy canes in the Burlap Bags can be fun. When you stir the hot chocolate with the candy cane you get instant peppermint cocoa…my favorite.

You will notice in the photo shown above that I use different shapes or words cut from my Cricut machine, too. Really, any shape you can cut from your Cricut machine makes a stencil you can use in different sizes and colors to make adorable custom projects. The CTMH Cricut cartridges give you 700 designs to choose from in each collection. So many fabulous options.


Burlap Bags Thanksgiving


Here’s the monogrammed burlap bag one more time used on a Thanksgiving table, shown above. The burlap bags are the perfect size for holding your dinner napkin and the flatware for each place setting. Instead of a monogrammed letter you could choose a fall shape like a turkey silhouette stenciled in Cocoa Pigment Ink or fall leaves to coordinate with colors your table setting. Again, you have 40 different colors of Pigment Inks to choose from with Close To My Heart so you have lots of color options.



  • My Creations Burlap Drawstring Bags
  • CTMH Cricut Artbooking Cartridge
  • Pigment Ink
  • Sponge Daubers


Burlap Bag Project Supplies



I start with my CTMH Cricut Artbooking Cartridge and choose a shape, letter, or message to cut out. This will make a stencil that you place on top of the burlap bag. Using a Sponge Dauber, sponge your choice of Pigment Ink colors in the stenciled area. Then set it aside to dry.

TIP: Before you sponge the Pigment Ink onto the burlap bag put a piece of waxed paper inside the bag to keep the ink from bleeding through and making spots on the back of your bag. Burlap is a very loosely woven fabric. The ink can go through the holes when you are sponging so you will want to put something inside to protect it.


There really are a lot of different ways to use these great little My Creations Burlap Drawstring Bags in your holiday decorating, gift wrapping, and celebrations. They come in packages of three and are a very affordable way to add some festive flair to your holiday projects. I will be sharing some other Thanksgiving projects with burlap banners and burlap ribbon tomorrow. Come back and visit to see other ways you can use this stenciling technique for quick do-it-yourself projects.


Now “Hop” on over to Diana Veenendaal’s Blog to see what she has created to share with you. Be sure to visit all of the Consultants in the Handcrafted Holidays Blog Hop to get some great ideas for your holiday projects. Thanks for stopping by and Happy Holidays!


New to the Close To My Heart products this spring is a line of fabrics designed to coordinate with and compliment two new paper packages. Each of the textile sets includes three sheets of different cotton fabrics that measure 14″ x 24″each and have pinked edges. This makes them the perfect size for many project including adding to scrapbook pages, cards, sewing pillows, and covering boxes. There are so many terrific options for these coordinating textiles.

For Always Textiles



Chantilly Textiles



Here are some ideas from Close To My Heart on ways to use fabric on a project.


To see other projects I have made using the “For Always Textiles” revisit the scrapbook pages that I shared with you in a post from March 23 called, “The Beautiful “For Always’ Collection.” This post show three different ways to use fabric on scrapbook pages. Click here for a direct link to that blog post.

You will find all of the textiles, the paper packets they coordinate with, and matching accessories on my website at michelle.ctmh.com. You can view a current Close To My Heart Idea Book on my website by  clicking here. In the Idea Book you will find lots of great artwork and project ideas where you will see the fabric incorporated into many different creative ways.



Looking for a quick and easy project to personalize for your home or share as a gift? I’m really excited about a new Canvas Art Workshop On The Go Kit that makes creating unique home decor pieces so easy. The new Canvas Art available in a Workshop On The Go Kit from Close To My Heart is amazing. Start to finish the project is complete in about an hour and it is simple to customize into your own color scheme variations using the variety of full color Dimensional Elements that are included in the kit.

The kit comes with instructions and all the materials you need to create a 12″ x 12″ canvas display. The Canvas Display has a terrific chevron background printed on the canvas so you just add the art shapes, flourishes, and accessories on top. You can follow the instructions just the way they are or use the parts and pieces to create your own design.

Watch this to see how simple it is to create this great canvas art.


I think the Canvas Art would be a terrific gift idea for baby or bridal showers. The colors work well for a baby boy or girl. They also work well for home decors that are warm colors or cool colors. Perfect! If you don’t have a photo to include, just put all the parts and pieces together ahead of time would be easy and then the new mom or happy couple could add their own photo later. How fun would that be?

Click here to visit my website where you can order your own Canvas Art Workshop On The Go Kit. You can also see other great home decor project ideas in the Close To My Heart Idea Book.

I’ve got my Canvas Art Workshop On The Go Kit here and am ready to put it all together. I’ll share a picture when I’m finished so you can see how I personalized my project, too.



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