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Sunday, February 28, 2010
So we just had a huge Swarm yesterday with 57 ladies and their Cricuts. It was a blast. But one of the coolest things was that my sister-in-law, Becca, came for the Swarm - all the way from Texas!!! Becca is super duper awesome, and I just adore her. So what better way to show someone you love them than to make cute stuff for them, right?

Becca bought this black Ott Lite today on sale at Michael's, and we decided to dress it up. I got out the vinyl, and we went to work.

We decorated both the front and the back using the Storefront cartridge as well as Storybook. Hmmmm, I think I like it too much and want to swap Ott Lites tonight while she's sleeping. By the time she notices, she'll be back in Texas! Should I do it?

I also made Becca this silly scrap shirt. Yes, it really does say "Scrapbooger". She loved it and wore it to the Swarm.

It says "Scrapbooger" because my sweet daughter called us that when she was about 3, and she was cranky at us for scrapping too much, LOL!

Since then, Emily has had a change of heart and now wants to scrap with us! She's learning to use the Cricut, and I let her use it all by herself today for the first time. She's only 5 1/2, but she did a fabulous job!

It's been a crazy fun weekend - thanks for stopping by!!
Tuesday, February 23, 2010
Here's one more layout that I posted over at Hallmark Scrapbook as a Guest Designer. Since this one was kind of a bonus project, I'm going to just go ahead and post all of the pics here. If you want more details, though, such as sizes, paper used, etc, please pop over to Hallmark Scrapbook to check it all out. Btw, this is not going to be available as a kit. It was a "just for fun" project, but feel free to scraplift!

Btw, this uses just the Paisley cartridge, and it's available at the Hallmark Scrapbook store HERE.

Thanks for visiting! I've got more stuff coming soon - promise!!
Monday, February 22, 2010
Guess what! As of today, I am a Guest Designer for the Hallmark Scrapbook Ladybugs!!! I created a very special layout just for the occasion, and you can check it out HERE. But since I'm a big ol' tease, I thought I'd at least share one little picture of it, just to give you a taste. So pop on over to Hallmark's blog and let me know what you think.

Thursday, February 18, 2010
I just drew the winner for the Basic Grey Sugar Rush paper pack, and it is Melissa S.

Melissa S said...

Adorable cards!! I {heart} Basic Grey paper!! Thanks for the wonderful giveaway!

And since she left me her email address, I will email her right now. Congratulations, Melissa!!!
Tuesday, February 16, 2010
Can you believe it's almost Easter? It's probably a little easier to believe if you're here in California enjoying this amazing sunshine with me!! Well, ready or not, here comes my latest class/kit, a "Happy Easter" layout - with a fun 3D bonus project too!

This sweet layout is perfect for pictures of your favorite boys or girls, enjoying Easter Day - chocolate faces and all! It uses the new Easter mini cartridge, and adorable papers from Three Bugs in a Rug. See details below.

This layout will be available as both a class and a kit. For you NorCal locals, the class will be held Wednesday, March 10th at 6pm here at my home in Rocklin - AND you'll get to learn how to use the I-top brad maker from Imaginisce if you're in the class, as well as the Center Point function on your Expression. Class is $25, including materials.

Kits are also available for shipping, and will include all of the patterned papers, cardstock, ribbon and a pre-made super snazzy I-top brad. Plus you'll get my detailed, yet easy to follow directions with Cricut Cut Chart that shows you line by line exactly what you'll need to cut on your machine with all of the settings. There are also well-organized written instructions and plenty of color photographs. Kit is $25. Shipping is $5 in CA, and ranges $6 to $9 for the rest of the US, depending on location. Kits will ship out on March 12th.

To sign up for the class or order the kit, email me at Be sure to include your zip code or state if ordering the kit, so I can calculate postage. I also have other kits - just check out the slide show at the very top of my blog to see what's available, and I'm happy to combine shipping. I accept PayPal, checks or money orders.

To complete this project as shown, you will need the following supplies:
Cricut Expression and mat, Easter 2010 mini cartridge, green and light brown chalk ink (optional, but helpful), Crop-a-dile or hole punch, 3D pop-dots, white gel pen, adhesive and standard tools such as paper trimmer, scissors, etc. If you don't yet have the Easter mini cartridge, it's adorable, and you can get a great deal on it from Hallmark Scrapbook
HERE. It's a pretty inexpensive cart, and super adorable!

And check out this fun and simple 3D bonus project! You'll get to make this as part of your kit, and then fill it with your favorite Easter candy. Mmmmmm!!

Speaking of candy, be sure to check out yesterday's post below as there is some BLOG CANDY going on, so don't miss out!
Monday, February 15, 2010
It's been a wild week here, and yesterday - Valentine's Day - I realized that I hadn't made any cards for my family. Whoops! So I got this fun yet simple idea in my head, opened up Design Studio and went to work. I was able to whip up these 5 cards in about an hour and a half. Not bad for me!

The card base itself is from Stretch Your Imagination at 5 1/2". And then I used the Shadow feature from HK Greetings to cut the windows into the card base, and did the same thing with the HK Font cartridge. I then cut out each image at the same size, without the Shadow feature, and did the same with the font. I folded a white 10x5 piece of cardstock into a 5x5 card, and glued it inside, and then attached the non-Shadowed images to the front of that inner white card. Ta-da! So simple! And yes, I really did give my hubby and my Dad Hello Kitty cards, LOL!

And ummmm, didn't I mention something about some blog candy? On these cards (and on my earlier Hugs & Kisses layout), I used Basic Grey's Sugar Rush paper line. This is honestly my favorite paper of all time. I'm in LOVE with it - it just speaks to my soul!!!! The colors, the patterns, everything - it's perfection! So that will be my blog candy - one pack of the Basic Grey Sugar Rush papers. It's 18 sheets of pure double-sided bliss, valued at over $20. To enter, just make sure you're a follower of my blog, and leave a comment on this post. Tell me about your Valentine's Day, or about your favorite line of paper. And don't forget to leave me your email address or messageboard name so I can reach you if you win. I still have an unclaimed prize from my previous blog candy (ShawnfromMN)!! I'll do the drawing on Thursday, February 18th at about 10am pacific time.

Thanks for stopping by. Tune in later this week as I'll be introducing my next class project/kit very soon!!

Tuesday, February 9, 2010
Ok, here's a little something for all of you blog candy lovers. A lady is giving away a $100 bill on her blog! Yeah, baby!!! I'm going to enter, but I figure if I don't win it, then one of my peeps needs to win it, right? You can go check it out HERE. Let me know if you wind up $100 richer. Woohoo!!
Monday, February 8, 2010
Drumroll please! I've got the winners here for both blog candy giveaways, and here they are...

Winners of the Above Rubies "Cricut A-Z" DVD:

keKreations said...

Thanks for the chance to win. I'm off to read the review now.

Melannie said...

Please, please, please pick me to win the DVD. I have a new cricut expressions which I love, but I'm sure that I don't understand half of what it's capable of doing! I could really use the instruction. Love your blog! :)

And the winner of the Cricut Project Kit is:

ShawnfromMN said...

Love these projects!! I am always looking for altered items!! Very nice!

Winners, you have 2 weeks to claim your prize. I will try to reach you, or you can email me at with your shipping address. Congratulations!!! And thanks to everyone who participated!!
Friday, February 5, 2010
Introducing my very first Guest Designer, Wendy Lawrence!! The name may sound familiar to you, and you've no doubt seen her in many of my pictures from CHA. You've probably even met her if you've been to a class of mine. Wendy is my best friend, amazingly devoted assistant, and a brilliant designer. She's incredible with altered projects, and loves to distress and bling things out. Check out this fabulous project that she has created just to share with you today. Nice! You can see more pictures on her blog HERE, so please pop over and check it out. Her blog is fairly new, but we are going to be beefing up the Bling Queen's site with many more projects to come.

Here's what Wendy had to say about this stunning project:
"First off-I love to alter items. This was a Bare Elements-Maria Purse-Half Moon (made by Creative Imaginations).

I covered the purse with the New Websters Paper Line "Life's Portrait" and distressed it with Tim Holtz "Black Soot" distressing ink. And all the cuts were made with my bug using "Forever Young" cartridge. A few of the items were embossed using my Cuttlebug and various folders then pop dotted. And to put the final touch on this I used the black cord ribbon purchased at Jo-Ann's.

The frame was covered the same way also used the distressing and cording. (The frame was just $1.00.) The flowers were embossed and pop dotted to give it a little more definition."

So, how CUTE is Wendy's project??? Oh, I want to steal it when she's not looking!! Here's how to enter for the blog candy today. Leave a comment here and let me know what you think of my lovely Guest Designer. Be sure to become a follower of my blog, and leave your email address or at least your messageboard name in your comment so I can contact you if you win. And for another chance, you can leave a comment on Wendy's blog, and do the same thing. The blog candy is a Cricut Project Kit. You'll get your choice between the Warm Hearts kit (uses A Child's Year) OR the Christmas Morning kit (uses Joys of the Season + a font). You can see and click on the pictures at the top of my blog in the slide show. I'll draw the winner on Monday morning, February 8th.

Huge thanks to Wendy for your gorgeous project today!!!
Thursday, February 4, 2010

So by now, I'm sure most of you have heard of Above Rubies Studio, and the DVD that they put out, "Cricut A-Z". Well, a couple of weeks ago I had not yet viewed this DVD, but kept hearing about it and wondered what all the fuss was about. When I went to CHA recently, I got to meet Megan Gravener, the Creative Director of Above Rubies Studio. Not only did I get to meet her, but we got to spend some time together and I have to say that she is fantastic - very sweet, down to earth, hard-working, and thoughtful. And fun to hang out with too! I asked her if she would mind if I did a review of her DVD, and not only was she kind enough to give me a copy, but she also gave me a couple of extras to give away as blog candy. Woooohooooo!!!! I love being able to give you guys some free stuff now and then!!! To enter to win, just make sure you're a follower of my blog and leave a comment on this post and let me know what you think of my review - or what you think of the DVD if you've seen it. Be sure to leave me your email address or your messageboard name so I can reach you if you win. I'll draw the two winners Monday morning, February 8th, at about 10am pacific time.

I may be the last one in on the secret, but yes, it's true - this is a great DVD!!! I've been teaching Cricut classes for over 2 years now (and a Cricut user since it first came out), and I can't even tell you how many times I've met people who are just taking their Cricut out of the box for the first time. And yet, it's always been impossible for me to have enough time in a class to actually cover everything that somebody needs to know to get the most out of their Cricut. The cool thing is that, because this DVD is soooo comprehensive, it's actually perfect for that just-out-of-the-box Cricuteer, all the way up to the advanced user. It pains me to admit this, but I even learned a few things!

"Cricut A-Z" really does cover everything. There are several different chapters to choose from, or you can just play the whole DVD and soak it all in like I did. But in the beginning, she literally goes through all of the basics like where to plug your cord in, how to turn your machine on, how to change your blade, the dials, functions, modes, creative features, you name it. And I have to say that I love the close-ups!!! The production is fantastic, and it's incredibly helpful to see a perfectly steady close-up when learning how to do such detailed processes.

One of the most frequent comments I used to receive when I taught my basic Cricut 101 classes, was that people were thrilled to finally learn how to use the booklet that comes with each cartridge. Many people had no idea that there were so many extra images on a cartridge that you can't see when just looking at the keypad overlay or even the back of the box. You've gotta make friends with that booklet, and Megan does a great job of showing how that works with close-ups and examples. That right there will make it worth the money if that's something you don't know how to do!!

Besides the basics, which an advanced user still may want to brush up on, there's plenty of meat for us die-hard Cricut addicts. She shows how to do several different "out of the box" Cricut techniques such as making your own stamps and your own Cuttlebug folders with your bug. Plus I personally really enjoyed seeing how to use "Shrinky Dink" material in the Cricut, and then what on earth to do with it next. Very cool - I'm totally going to give that a try! And once your brain is good and full, there's a fabulous Project Gallery section with tons of creative ideas by different designers, along with a "recipe card" to go along with each one so you could easily scraplift and put your new skills to the test.

So, in case you're still wondering what I really thought of this DVD... it's awesome!!!! Rave, rave reviews, 2 thumbs up, encore, flower-tossing, the whole bit. I will be recommending this to all of my clients, and consider it a must-have for every Cricut user!!!!! Now we've just gotta convince Provo Craft to include a copy with every Cricut!!

Be sure to check out the Above Rubies Studio website HERE. Or go directly to THIS page of the website to order your DVD. Btw, they will soon be coming out with a Gypsy A-Z DVD. OMG, how COOL is that????? I'll be first in line to get it!!
Wednesday, February 3, 2010
Whatever you do, Bee Happy!! Welcome to a wonderful Wednesday! And here's my latest Limited Edition Kit, "Bee Happy". I will have a limited number of these kits, and once they're gone, I won't make more. In fact, the kits are already half gone, even though I sent the preview pics to only 20% of my customers (the ones who ordered the Hugs & Kisses kit got priority ordering). So if you'd like to get this kit, I wouldn't recommend waiting too long. Details are below...

This layout is super bright and happy - perfect for your spring pictures! It uses the Walk In My Garden cartridge, and the brand spankin' new papers from the Imaginisce Lucy Bird collection. Oooh, I just wanna give Imaginisce a big smooch for consistently coming out with such gorgeous and cheerful papers (plus they're glittered!).

To create this layout as shown, you will need the following supplies:
Cricut Expression or Cricut Create, mat, Walk In My Garden cartridge, Cuttlebug with Divine Swirls embossing folder (optional but cute!), white gel pen, brown marker, light brown chalk ink, dark brown chalk ink, Stickles (Diamond or other clear color), 3D pop-dots, adhesive and standard tools such as scissors, trimmer, etc.

This is a Limited Edition kit, which means that it will not be taught as a class, and numbers are very limited. It also means that it's only $20. Or if you order the Hugs & Kisses kit that I posted a couple of weeks ago, you can get this kit for only $15 (but I only have about 8 of the Hugs kits left). Shipping is available, and ranges from $5-$6 in CA, and $6 to $9 for the rest of the US, depending on location. If you'd like to order this kit, please email me at and include your state or zip code so I can determine what your shipping charge will be. I accept PayPal, checks or money orders. Bee Happy will ship out in mid-February. I have other kits available if you'd like to combine on shipping. Just see the top area of my blog as I will be updating the available kit list today.

In case you are wondering what is included with this kit, here's the scoop. You'll get all of the patterned papers and cardstock needed to create the layout. Plus some of the non-Cricut cuts will be pre-made for you, including the background pieces and double photo mats. You'll also get my very detailed, yet easy-to-follow directions with my Cricut Cut Chart. This chart shows you line by line exactly what you'll need to cut on your machine with all of the settings. And the cuts are grouped by color so it's very efficient. There are also well-organized written instructions and plenty of color photographs.

Don't forget to tune in tomorrow as I'll be reviewing the Above Rubies Studio DVD "Cricut A-Z", and will have blog candy to go along with it. Yay!!!! Plus coming soon is my first Guest Designer, Wendy Lawrence, Queen of All Things Girly! Thanks for stopping by, and have a BEE-utiful day!!!

Tuesday, February 2, 2010
As promised, I'm going to post 5 more layouts today. Most are simple, but a couple of these may look familiar as they were past classes or kits that I finally got to add pictures to for Emily's scrapbook.

But first, I thought I'd post this simple man(ish) Valentine card that I threw together. It's for a soldier that Emily's kindergarten class has adopted. I actually timed myself making this card, and from zero ideas to totally finished, it took me 40 minutes. And that is FAST for me as I am notoriously sloooooow!!! This was super easy, and the details are below the pic.

Manly Valentine card. The card itself was cut from A Child's Year at 6 1/2". So many great card options on that cart!!! The winged heart and "Valentine" were cut from Love Struck. Winged heart was cut at 3", and "Valentine" was cut at 1 1/2". I inked everything, and added a blue and white frame on the inside, which Emily got to write on.

Pumpkins, Pumpkins layout was made with my GYPSY!!!! Aren't you proud of me? Most cuts were from Gypsy Wanderings. The journal box, though, was from Storybook. And now I'm blanking on the font, which I welded. It may have been from the Calligraphy cart.

Boo Crew layout may look familiar. I did this as a class and kits this past fall. (I still have a few kits left.) I used Paper Doll Dress Up for everything except for the title, which was the HK Font. I love that font since it's bubbly, and has a nice chubby shadow to it.

This was a Limited Edition kit that I released on Halloween, and sold out in less than a day. Bunch of crazy Halloween junkies out there! All cuts are from A Child's Year. Have I ever mentioned how much I LOVE that cart? Mwah! Paper is SU.

An ancient kit I released long ago, which I think looks much cuter with pictures in it.
Most cuts were from Stretch Your Imagination, including "Autumn". The word "Days" was from Printing 101.

Apple Hill layout made with Speaking of Fall. Pretty sure I've never before spent so much time making a title for a page, LOL!

Don't forget to check back tomorrow as I'll be introducing my latest Limited Edition Layout "Bee Happy". And happy it is!!! Plus Thursday I'll be reviewing the Above Rubies Studio DVD "Cricut A-Z" and will even have a giveaway to go along with it!!!

But wait - there's more! I will also soon be introducing my very first Guest Designer, Wendy Lawrence. Yup, that's Wendy who went to CHA with me and is in all the crazy pictures. She's a brilliant designer in her own right, and I can't wait to show off what she's making. Wow!!!
Monday, February 1, 2010
If you know me or follow my blog, it's no huge secret that I like to go all out when it comes to my Cricut projects. But in reality, that's only when I'm designing for classes or kits, guest designing, etc. People often say things like "oh, your daughter's scrapbooks must be amazing." Ummm, nope. Not really. They're decent, but pretty average. I'd still be scrapping the first month of her life if I did every page like I do for a class, LOL.

So here are some examples of my simple scrapbooking. These have all been made recently for Emily's 5 year album. I'll post 5 more layouts tomorrow. And keep watching this week because on Wednesday, I'll post my newest Limited Edition kit "Bee Happy". Plus on Thursday, I'm going to do a review and a giveaway that I'm very excited about. Bring on the free stuff!!

Above: Emily's 5th birthday party. Carts used: Hello Kitty Greetings and Hello Kitty Font.

Cake time. Used HK Greetings and HK Font again. Oh, I NEEEED a Cricut Cake machine. Can't wait to get mine!

A little bit of rain, and a whole lotta shine. Both HK Carts used again. I'm getting my money's worth out of those!

Two days after her birthday, she started Kindergarten. I'm going to add "First Day of" above the Kindergarten title. Used Plantin Schoolbook for title.

Emily with her best friend, Ashlynne. I used Storybook for their names, and HK Font for "Best Friends". It's hard to see, but there's a journal tag that tucks into the border strip on the right page.

Super simple layout of the day we surprised Emily with a big play structure. The only Cricut work was the title, made with Cuttin' Up, and welded with Design Studio. And yes, I'm bad about journaling, but I will do it - promise!!

Thanks for stopping by. Check back tomorrow for more layouts!

About Me

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Monique Griffith
Rocklin, CA, United States
The Monique Griffith Design Team consists of 4 Cricut Designers: Monique, Wendy Lawrence, Susan Rees and Becca Rees. We specialize in making Cricut Project Kits that you can make on your own with your Cricut, learning more about your bug in the process. You just need your Cricut Expression, the required cartridge(s), and a few basic tools. The directions come with a Cricut Cut Chart that shows you line by line exactly what you'll need to cut on your machine, with all of the settings for each cut. There are also well-organized written instructions and color photographs. We pride ourselves on our detailed designs, and on teaching others how to most effectively design with the Cricut. Currently, we have have downloadable directions on sale for only $5, and there are over 50 projects to choose from.

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