paper as an organizational tool

office companions

So here it is! My new bulletin board. It doesn't looked lived in just yet because I still need to figure out a way to hang it. This was originally a black cork board (really ugly!) that has the hanging hardware on the long side. So I have to figure out what to attach to the back in order to hang it the long way. Covering it with linen was something that was long overdue. I couldn't be happier with the results!

The plan is the make the area where the trees are the inspiration side of the board. I will probably be hanging color and pattern studies. I made the bottom pockets using the same Office Companions file that I used for the business card holder that's close to the center. That's what I love about cutting files—resizing is so, so easy which makes all projects so versatile. Lastly, I need to look for a picture of my kiddos and Mr Z. That's what I want to place in the frame that has the blue paper right now. The trees will eventually get framed—I think.

This is a small but good start. I'm hoping to have the rest of the studio in better shape soon. It was getting out of control for while there.

• • •

Throwing out my back and being in bed for more than a week has really thrown things of course around here! So here are the videos that I had planned on posting before all the chaos ensued and when I first posted about the Office Companions set. I hope they help.

It's always so strange to hear my own voice... 

Friday Tidbits
- Pinterest and it's policy issues have even affected the founder. Read about it here. Interesting, very interesting.
- I read about Twig Terrariums in this week. They seem so enchanting.
- My Easter Eggs and Basket are on Lettering Delights!

A big thank you to Babble for including me in their 2012 Top 50 Mom Craft Blogs list for the second year in a row! I'm so honored to be included in such a talented group of women. Get yourself a cup of your favorite beverage and dig into the entire list—just make sure you have time!

Have an awesome weekend everyone!

floral trio

3d flowers

Although I call myself a non-flowery person (more in the decor side of things) I actually do really like flowers. I enjoy making them and I definitely enjoy the occasional vase full of fresh cut flowers (specially if they happen to come from my Mr Z!).


So far my flower sets have been very graphic and not really specifically resembling any plants. That why this Floral Trio set is quite unique. It includes a passion fruit flower, a magnolia and a poppy flower. In addition to these three flowers you can mix and match the pieces to make your own variations.

passion fruit flower

One of the fun parts of working on a project like this is doing research and that's when Google images comes in really handy. I only look at photos or biology diagrams of the real thing. I don't like to look at illustrations or other paper creations because I want the design to be my own interpretation—to have my own flavor.

I'm really happy with the way they turned out. In particular I know that as a crafter I would appreciate the fact that they can go further. All the petals can be used in a mix-and-match type of way, so you'll end up with quite a floral collection—not just three samples.


Here is a short video on how you can put together the files for the magnolia and passion fruit flower. I hope it helps you out!

The Floral Trio is now in the shop. Enjoy!

playing catch up

office companions

Considering the week I've had a catch up day is badly needed. So... today will be all about cleaning up and putting us in order again.

It seems fitting that my most recent update in the shop is a group of Office Companions files. I made a recycling version of the Hanging Note Holder in the past but I'd never thought of making it an SVG cutting file until now. I can't wait to get my bulletin board updated with this set. I'm going to make myself a new rolodex card holder and these templates will also help me with that.

Optional idea - add magnets or magnetic strips to the back of the Hanging Holder or Hanging Pocket and you can place them on metal bulletin boards or your refrigerator.

Another new file— a set of Four Lattice designs: houndstooth, knitting pattern, petals and flowers. I'm working on some ideas for those too! And no, I haven't forgotten about the tutorial (cutting mats) that I was going to post this week. It's coming! Hopefully next week things will be back to normal.

• • •

Friday Tidbits
Only one today... 

Foxtail Creek Studio: I wasn't online much this week but as soon as I saw this shop I felt so enchanted by it. It has such a fairy tale feeling and the work is beautiful! 

Have a great weekend everyone! 

easter lily


I haven't been around because like I mentioned in passing on Monday I've been having some back problems—and that's putting it mildly. I have never been so unable to move very much in the last few days. Crazy and very painful. The good news is that it seems like I'm on the mend—(just in time so that I don't go crazy and/or drive everyone around me batty too!) but I feel like I'm walking on egg shells—any false move and I may be back to square one. Here's hoping that that won't happen again. I was feeling better yesterday and decided to cut something on my Silhouette. Bad move. Just rubbing the paper on to the cutting mat shot a sharp jab up my back that sent me crawling back to bed. Fun times!

So enough of my pity party...

The Easter lily is a small decoration paper project that I made for Jennifer Ackerman-Haywood's Craft Sanity magazine. She was kind enough to invite me to contribute to the 6th edition of her magazine which is now available for pre-order.

By the way, if you enjoy listening to interviews of other creative people you should listen to Jennifer's podcast as well. It's always a fun and informative show!

easter eggs - svg files


After a few days off with the kids it's so hard to come back! But as is always the case, when I take a break inspiration for other projects kicks into high gear. Now if I can get rid of the back issues I'm having (I messed it up pretty bad—don't move furniture alone! ugh) then I'd be doing great.

For now I do have a little something new to show you—Easter eggs and bows. I'm quite proud of these because not only are these Easter eggs cute for decor (like mobiles, ornaments, place holders, etc) but the same files can be used as gift toppers and bows. Once Easter comes and goes you can use the same holiday decorations for gifts. How's that for a bigger bang for your buck?

eggs turn into bows

Can you believe this is the first time I buy brads? This could get dangerous!

Happy Monday!

• • •

Before I forget...
I've opted out of Pinterest. As much as I enjoyed creating my pin boards and seeing what the rest of you were pinning from my sites I've decided that I can't continue. The terms of service are actually quite ridiculous and as users we are the ones running all the risk. There are many articles out there but this is the most recent one I read and it finally did it for me. I deleted my account and I have installed a "no pin" code (found here) on my blog and site. I hope you understand.

the best way to get inspired is...


To get away! That's what we did for the last few days. We were in San Antonio (3hr drive from here)—it's always great to visit friends. The second best way is to go away without your computer—which I didn't do (to much going on)—it'll happen next time for sure.

We had all had a wonderful time and this week we're just taking advantage of sleeping in a bit later than usual—except the one day the kids woke up at 5am while out of town (Holy moly!).

I hope all is well with all of you!
• • •

Today is the last day you can vote for me to be part of the Top 25 Creative Moms on Circle of Moms. Even if you've already voted (thank you!) you can vote again (it was a one-vote-per-day thing). Every vote counts!

Please vote here! It's only one second... one click. Thank you!

Just caught this guy by chance (on a tree just outside our window in SA). Isn't he beautiful?

easter baskets - svg and dxf files

easter baskets

She asks and she receives (well, not always). My little C has seen the Easter decorations pop up everywhere and she mentioned that I should make an Easter basket. Hmm... why not? So, here are the Easter baskets that I'll be using for little treats.

We use big real woven baskets for our Easter egg hunt but I like giving them something a little extra so these baskets will be perfect.

Speaking of an Easter egg hunt. How old where you the last time you participated in one? I was surprised that both the kids said they'd like to have one even though I was almost sure our DS would turn me down. I'm so glad that we still have interest in innocent fun. How long will it last?

• • •

Remember that there is a 20% discount in the shop until March 12th!
Add the code craft2012 in the Shopping Cart page.

• • •

I'm still in the running for Top 25 Creative Moms can I get your votes? You can vote once every 24 hrs. until March 15th. I'm so close to the top 25 but I still need your help. If you have a second, please vote here. Thank you!

Have a great weekend and spring break!

top 5 questions about the silhouette cameo

easter boxes

Ever since I started using the Silhouette CAMEO I've been getting more and more emails that ask similar questions. So, putting some of my answers in one place just seems logical and hopefully helpful to some of you. These are only tips for beginners and I cannot guarantee they will work for everyone. if you have bigger issues with your machines be sure to contact Silhouette. I've heard that they are quite responsive with questions.

Here we go...

1. How do I import A Little Hut files into the Silhouette Studio library?
  • Download all the files to your computer. 
  • Open your Silhouette software. 
  • Click on File>Import to my Library and import the files one at a time. You can name them anything you’d like in the pop-up window and add keywords if you prefer.
  • Be organized from the start! Create folders such as “flowers”, “borders” etc. That way you can find the files easily next time you need them. 
2. How do I create new folders?
You can do this two different ways. 
  • Click on the folder image in the second row of icons in the top left hand corner of the software window. If you need a sub-folder, highlight the "parent" folder and then click on the folder image. A sub-folder will appear under the "parent" folder.
  • Right click on the My Library folder and click on "New Folder" from the pop-up window. A new folder will be added to your list of folders. To create a sub-folder click on the "parent" folder you'd like to add a sub-folder to and right click on it. Click on new folder in the pop-up window.
3. How can I make my mat less sticky?
Place a clean piece of fabric over the mat and pull it on and off a few times. Don't overdo it or you'll be asking the opposite question!

4. Are DXF files compatible with the Silhouette Studio software?
Yes. SVGs can be imported directly to the Silhouette Studio Designer Edition for which there is an additional fee. They cannot be imported to the free version of Silhouette Studio.

This leads into...
Do A Little Hut files work with the Silhouette Cameo?
Yes! I include SVGs and DXF files in all my products.

5. How can I lift my paper without tearing it?
Use a spatula. I have never worked without one. I don't own the Silhouette version (I still use my old Cricut spatula) but I assume it would work just as well. I don't see how anyone can work without this tool and why it isn't included with the machine. It's a must!

This is a goofy one that I hate to admit to. It had me stumped for a few days when I was a newbie. 
- Check the Silhouette Cameo screen and make sure that you have the "Load Cutting Mat" highlighted if you intend to use the cutting mat. If you have "Load Media" and you're using the cutting mat instead of vinyl the image will cut right into the transparent part of your mat (where it shouldn't!).

If you have any more we can certainly keep adding to the list!

I don't consider myself an expert on the Silhouette Cameo at all—I'm still learning too. Please refer your more involved and/or technical questions to the machine manual or to the Silhouette support team.

• • •
Photo - My Easter boxes are updated with additional pieces to give the images more detail.

• • •

Starting Jan. 2013 I only sell my SVG Single Images in the Silhouette store. Everything else including my sets are sold in my A Little Hut shop

three birdcages - svg and dxf files


So here is the new Three Birdcages set! There are two different styles (round and square) and as always you can make them as simple or embellished as you'd like. The SVG and DXF files are obviously included—and by popular demand (already!) I've included PDF files for those of you that would like to to make them by hand.

In all honesty cutting them my hand shouldn't be too much trouble. Aside from the bases of the round birdcage almost all the lines that need to be cut are straight—just print the pages, grab a ruler and an Xacto and you'll be ready to go.

I have to say that I'm really enjoying working on these 3D projects. They are a lot of fun to make. I always feel so relaxed when I'm putting projects like this together. It really is like therapy.


In order to celebrate that it's National Craft Month from March 7th to March 12th there is a 20% discount on all items of the shop. Use the code craft2012 and make sure to add it to the Shopping Cart page (the link is one of four on the top right side of the site).


behind the scenes


This is what happens when you have to make and remake prototypes until all the measurements and or designs are just right. They're multiplying!

mission style: like going back in time

mission style

Well hello again! Last week was just all about work. I couldn't even think of what to put on the blog so I opted to stay quiet—much better than some bland bla, bla, bla. This week promises to be just as busy but at least there is a lot on my plate.

I'm into the the 3D paper work lately. I really enjoy coming up with new shapes. It's more challenging and exciting to see the results.  

After I finished the Moroccan party set I thought that it would be nice to counterbalance it with something more masculine and less ornate. That's when I thought of Frank Lloyd Wright and how he was a big influence on me when I was in college. I think in some way his work still is. Somehow it feels like "comfort design" to me—it's so familiar. 

I said this is more masculine but there is no reason why this can't be turned into something more feminine. This lantern design can be used as is or as a base to customize in many ways with flowers and ribbon. You get the idea right? 

The whole Mission style party set is now available in the shop. Enjoy!

mission style

Happy Monday!