Canada Day Decorations

One of my clients had seen this design on the Web and asked if I could recreate it for him in the form of vinyl sheets so he could use them on his store windows for Canada Day this year.

Canada-Day-ideas(pp_w515_h675) This was very simple to recreate with MTC because I really only needed to trace the maple leaf. I thought I would take the design a bit further and made something he could sell in his store.

I had seen lots of nice designs with vinyl on chargers and decided this might do well.

Here is the design I came up with for him.

2013-06-11 07.20.27 pm Cut out of bright red vinyl on a silver charger, it looks quite stunning.

IMG_3721 Canada Day will be on July 1. Happy early Canada Day!!!



Free Fallin’

I made this layout so I could film a video as a video response to a pop culture challenge. I am not really concerned about winning a prize, but definitely interested in getting more YouTube subscribers 🙂

IMG_0294 There is some background to this layout. My daughter and I I’ll be going to the Tom Petty concert in London, Ontario on June 18th.

Her all-time favorite song, the one she always requests, is Free Fallin’ by Tom Petty. I took drumming lessons for about 3 years and when I was at the stage to start learning songs, my teacher was telling me some of the things I should look for in a good song to start with. While he was talking, Free Fallin’ was on my mind because it has a fantastic, easy-going beat. At the end, he suggested Free Fallin’. It was just all too coincidental. I never planned to do anything with my drumming other than play along to songs for fun so when I developed an unrelated shoulder problem, I stopped taking lessons, but I do still practice this song often.

When I saw the announcement of Tom Petty’s 2013 tour on Facebook (I am a fan of his page), I asked my daughter if she would be free to come with me — I knew she would jump at the chance if school allowed it. She is in the Education program at McGill. It does work out and we were lucky enough to get tickets so we will be going to the concert. Of course, I had to remind her that he will only play the song once, IF he plays it … but we can play it as often as we like during the 8-hour drive to London (and back). We are very excited.

IMG_0295 I searched for a shape that would highlight the “Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers” star and then adapted it to work with my layout. I imported it into MTC and cut the pieces of glitter paper with my KNK Maxx.

IMG_0297 This is just a picture of the hearts next to Tom’s picture on the first page. We loooove Tom Petty 🙂

IMG_0296 This picture shows the grungy circles I found and cut with my KNK. The multiple circles embossed on the background paper inspired me to find these circles.

Note the drum notes and lyrics on the background paper. I copied them from my notebook — they are the actual music notes my teacher wrote in my notebook.

IMG_3622 IMG_3620 Finally, below is the video that shows how I used MTC to trace and cut my shapes for this project.

As requested, to subscribe to my YouTube Channel, just click the Subscribe button while you are watching the video above or go to and click the Subscribe button. Thanks for all the wonderful comments!!


Making my own stencils

I have had my eye on a particular stencil for some time, but cannot get it locally and it just doesn’t make sense to pay shipping to Canada for such a small and inexpensive item. I decided to try tracing an image of the stencil and cutting it myself with my KNK Maxx.

It looks to me like I might just be making lots of stencils for myself from now on.

Below is the image I imported into MTC to trace.

2013-03-08 06.48.18 pm


This is the result of the trace.

2013-03-08 07.41.45 pm It turned out a bit less clear, but I think that adds to the look of the stencil so I am very pleased with the result.

Some time ago, I had purchased many sheets of stencil material when I found it on clearance at a local Walmart. You just have to love clearance sales!!!

It was a very detailed cut, but the result was fantastic and now I have the stencil I have wanted for some time. I look forward to using it with mists to create a background for cards.

I used a cutting force of 132 and cut the design twice.


Turning a hobby into a business

They say that necessity is the mother of invention. This is absolutely true and it’s funny that I should mention an expression at the start of my post. Or maybe it isn’t so funny.

The truth is that my friend and I are both looking for work and since we weren’t finding much because we are both in our 50s, one of us doesn’t speak French (which is a necessity in Québec) and neither of us have a university degree, which is what everybody seems to want, we decided to make our own jobs.

My friend started brainstorming. Her husband told her she would find something right before her eyes. Sure enough, it WAS right in front of her eyes.

She has a beautiful home and has used vinyl decals with expressions as decorations in her home. She thought about me and the fact that I have a KNK cutter, experience cutting vinyl, nearly 1,000,000 fonts, and lots of ideas. She called me up and we started brainstorming and that day we decided to start own business as a partnership.

So you see, having a KNK cutter isn’t only for hobbies, or for fun — it can be a source of income.

We were very lucky because she is friends with the publisher of a local newspaper. When he heard about our venture, he suggested sending a reporter to conduct an interview with us and the article is in today’s paper!

The pictures show below show some of the samples I have been working on for our business.





We have Facebook pages at Vinyl Expressions and Cutting Edge Designs if you are interested in seeing what we have done.

Oh, and BTW, we have had our first paying order 🙂

Buffalo in the Badlands

In July 2005, my daughter and I visited my sister in South Dakota. My sister took us to the Badlands to see the sunset, but we got to see much more than we bargained for. It was quite the night!!!

My layout below is a very calm representation of the herd of buffalo we got stuck in that afternoon.

IMG_3389 IMG_3390 IMG_3391 IMG_3393 If you would like to hear the whole story, see how eerie it was and learn how I made the pieces for my project, please watch my video on this adventure on my YouTube channel. While you’re there, please subscribe to my channel. I plan to post Freestyle Friday videos every Friday and others as interesting things come up.

If you would like to download my cutting files for this project, there is a long on my ScrappyDIVA blog.

Buffalo in the Badlands video