Saturday, July 27, 2013

"thankful" craft blocks! {a tutorial}

So I feel pretty confident making decorative tiles from Heritage Makers individual scrapbook pages.  In fact, I think it's pretty great.  I'm sure you've noticed that from my recent posts.

But now I've branched out!  So proud of myself.  ;)

Today I'm going to show you something I just learned to do:  craft blocks.  

These are very simple, can be made to fit your own style or match your own home decor, and are inexpensive.  Like all Heritage Makers products, they can be very personalized.  You just use a Heritage Makers individual scrapbook page (or 11x14 print for larger projects), some wood blocks, and some adhesive.  So let's go!  

Here's what I'm going to make:

Yeah, sorry for the flash reflection.  This was the fourth picture I took, and it was deemed Good Enough.

This measures about 18 inches wide when it's finished.  This project cost me about $7.

Here's what you need:
  • Heritage Makers template 98402, "Count Your Blessings Blocks."  You can see it in the Heritage Makers template gallery--just type 98402 into the search field.
  • about 4 feet of a 2x4 piece of wood (found at home improvement stores; 2x4s actually measure 1.5"x3.5".  Tell me I'm not the only person who thinks that's weird.)
  • a saw (power saw recommended), or a nice person at said home improvement store who will cut the board into pieces for you--just be sure you take the measurements with you.
  • black paint (This project takes more than half of a 2-oz. bottle of craft paint.  You could try spray paint if you prefer.  You could also try a different color if you prefer)
  • adhesive of some kind, such as double-sided tape, Xyron, Uhu stick, spray adhesive, or Mod Podge.  
STEP 1:  create the beautiful part
You can always create things from scratch in Heritage Makers, but for this project I wanted to use a template since I have never done blocks before.  I used template 98402, "Count Your Blessings Blocks."  This one was nice because it had directions on it as well.  This was made on an 11x14 print.  

Once the template is in your account, you can open it for editing.  You can change those background papers or the font if you'd prefer a different style.  Or the font color.  Again, ways to do that are covered in that tutorial, or you can just ask me!  

I actually changed the sizes of the block pieces, so if you follow the template exactly, it will look a bit different than I showed pictured at the top, but not too much.

Once you're happy with your design, you'll need to preview it to see exactly how it will print, then you submit it for publishing.  

You'll get your project in the mail in about 7-10 days.  The waiting is the hardest part.  (Thanks, Tom Petty.  ..But it's true.)

UPDATE 2022:  Heritage Makers is currently being updated to a new software platform that doesn't require Adobe Flash to run (which Adobe discontinued at the end of 2020).  For the time being, it's most likely easier for you to order these items from me--meaning I make/order them for you--than it will be for you to make them in your own Heritage Makers account.  Just contact me with questions (or to order) these great items!

STEP 2:  cut your wooden blocks

Remember that 2x4s actually measure 1.5" x 3.5".  This is important to know so that you make sure your Heritage Makers design is the right size.  You can go ahead and cut your blocks while you wait for your Heritage Makers order to come in the mail, or you can wait just to double-check sizes.  

This particular project, because it's a template, actually comes with some instructions and size information right on it.  If you are doing something from scratch, you'll have to actually measure out the blocks sizes yourself.  You don't want the blocks exactly the same size as the Heritage Makers pieces--it's easiest to have a little bit of a wood border around your HM pages.  It protects it a bit.  I'd recommend that you cut the blocks with a power saw, to save time and to get a cleaner cut.

STEP 3:  prepare the wooden blocks

First, sand the rough edges.

Then paint them.  I'd suggest painting all sides of the blocks, but you don't have to.  Let the paint dry completely.  

STEP 4:  cut out the cuteness

When your blocks' decor arrives in the mail from Heritage Makers (and you're finished with your happy dance), cut out the pieces.  Use a paper cutter or scissors--whatever you'll be happy with.

STEP 5:  adhere the cuteness to the blocks
There are many ways to adhere pages when you craft.  I've heard suggestions of UHU stick, spray adhesive, Xyron machine, Mod-Podge, and double-sided tape.  

For this particular project, I'm going to stick with tried-and-true double-sided tape.  On my next project, I'll venture out.  I know with Mod-Podge you can use it as an adhesive on the back of the page, and then use it on the front as a sealer.  Some people don't like the look you get with the Mod-Podge put on the front, but others do.  See what you think.


It would look darling in your house, but it would also make a cute AND inexpensive gift!

UPDATE 2022:  It won't look exactly the same, but an other option for creating your own digital scrapbook pages or prints and making them into a craft project like this is  to use Artisan digital scrapbooking software by Forever.  You can learn about Artisan here:

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