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A Spring Travel Layout with Authentique’s Dreamy Collection!

We don’t get much resembling spring here in Florida, so it seems a waste to buy a collection that is spring themed. But that doesn’t mean that I don’t get the itch to use create some projects with spring colors.

[Disclaimer: Authentique Paper, Buttons Galore, and Cricut provided some products used in this article but this is not a sponsored post. Scrapbook Update is a participant in the Amazon affiliate program. Some links in this article are affiliate links that pay this site a commission at no cost to you if you make a purchase after a click.]

Authentique’s new “Dreamy” collection was the perfect solution to that dilemma this year! It’s filled with spring shades, and pretty butterflies and flowers. But the flowers aren’t spring bulbs and the rest of the  designs are various geometrics and graphics. This means the Dreamy collection is usable for a wide range of topics, such as gardens, babies, and cute kids.  Authentique Dreamy collection

I did decide to pair Dreamy with spring blooms for this first layout. These spring bloom photos are from a college spring break trip to Callaway Gardens in Pine Mountain, Georgia.

Authentique Dreamy spring layout

Supplies Used:

These photos obviously have a lot of color in them. That meant I had to be careful what other colored elements I used with them or it would both drown them out visually and end up looking like a circus.

I decided to use a very neutral blue print for my background and then use more bold prints to create pops of color in certain areas.

Authentique Dreamy spring layout

I used full sheets to plan the general concept of what colors I wanted where. Then I measured the areas that I wanted to fill and cut pieces. The idea was to fill some of the white space without making it feel crowded, and to balance photos in other areas of the page.

Authentique Dreamy spring layout

I actually ended up cutting that flower piece twice. After I cut it I decided that I wanted to create the title on it with a pen in my Cricut Maker. So I set up the cut shape in my Cricut Design Space and added the text.

Before I glued down all the paper blocks, I inked the edges of all of them to help the layered patterns stand out from each other.

Authentique Dreamy spring layout

I no longer have a record of the exact dates of the trip, so I just put the year and “spring break” on the date label. I decided to use the black label because it was the perfect size and added some black to balance the dark photos to the huge expanse of light color in that bottom corner.

Authentique Dreamy spring layout

I had some awkward blank spaces I wanted to fill – above the title, a square area in the center of the layout – but I didn’t want to be heavy handed about it and compete with the photos. I settled on creating these white and gray stamped flowers as a subtle fill for the areas. I highlighted the title block by using foam tape to apply the flower there.

Authentique Dreamy spring layout

Even though I’m a simple scrapbooker, the patterned paper blocks by the top two photos looked a bit bare to me. I selected chipboard embellishments to add to them. The chipboard adds some dimension, and the sentiments add a touch of journaling as well. Authentique Dreamy spring layout

Want to see more Authentique Paper layout fun? Drop by our sister site Chasing Dust Bunnies to see a travel layout I made with their beautiful new travel collection, Quest!

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Scrapping with Photo Play Paper’s new Belle Fleur collection! [Giveaway]

Today I’m playing with the gorgeous new Belle Fleur collection by Becky Fleck for Photo Play Paper…and I’m giving one away to a lucky Scrapbook Update reader, too!

[Disclosure: Some links in this article are affiliate links that pay this site a commission when a purchase is made after a click. Some product used in this article was provided by Photo Play Paper, Cricut, and Plaid but this is not a sponsored article.]

As soon as I saw the Belle Fleur collection from Photo Play Paper in the Creativation sneak peeks, I knew I wanted to use it to scrapbook some pictures of my daughter! It was perfect for this favorite photo of my daughter modeling a fascinator I made for my Chasing Dust Bunnies website. (Click here to visit Chasing Dust Bunnies and learn how to make it!)

Beautiful layout with Belle Fleur collection

Supplies Used:

To learn how I made this layout, including how I used my Cricut Maker machine and the new Mod Podge Ultra spray, watch the video below:

So, now that you’ve seen how much fun I had playing with the Belle Fleur collection, who wants to win one of their own? Thanks to Photo Play Paper, I’ve got one of these beautiful collection kits to give away to a lucky reader!

Photo Play Paper Belle Fleur Collection Pack

How To Enter: All you have to do to have a chance to be the lucky winner is leave a comment on this entry before 3:00 AM US eastern time on Monday, February 25th, 2019. Make sure you include your email address in the line reserved for it on the comment form (for your own protection, don’t put it in the text of the comment, where it will be visible to the public – just in the line labeled “email” in the form where only Scrapbook Update staff can see it). We will need it to notify you if you are a winner. Winners will be drawn by random drawing from all eligible entries. One entry per person. Sorry, US delivery addresses only.

Best of luck to all who enter, and happy creating!

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Update | Cuttlebug, Copic, Hobby Lobby, Michaels, JOANN, & More!

With the start of the new year and trade shows happening, we have lots of catching up to do with the craft industry news! So let’s get started!

[Disclaimer: Some links in this article are affiliate links that pay this site a commission at no cost to the reader when a purchase is made after a click.]

Cricut Cuttlebug

Cutting. Cricut has made two big product announcements recently. Fans of the Cuttlebug will be disappointed to learn that the die cut machine and its accessories are being discontinued. Those still wanting one (or supplies for one they already own) can shop while supplies last at Cricut.com.

Files from one of the most popular sources of SVG files for use on die cutting machines are now available in Cricut Access. Miss Kate Cuttables has launched several new collections in Cricut Access, including Spring Has Sprung, Springtime, All You Need Is Love, Be Mine Valentine, Love Letters, and Valentine’s Day.

Closing. Furniture chain Hemispheres, which was founded in 2001 by Hobby Lobby’s David Green, will be closing. The company’s vendors have been told the store will be placing no further inventory orders. Hemispheres’ eight stores in Texas and Oklahoma will close later this year after selling through existing and already-purchased inventory.

Closing 2. Impress Cards + Crafts has been serving Seattle-area paper crafters since 1987. But on February 23rd it will close its University Village store in Seattle, leaving only its Tukwilla location.

Closing 3. Scrapbook Store & More in Greenfield, Wisconsin will be closing their doors on March 31st. The owner, citing health problems and a changing scrapbook market, has announced plans to open a craft retreat house in late spring or early summer 2019 that will sleep 10-12 people.

Every store closure is a loss to the industry, of course. But this particular store is noteworthy as the store that started the scrapbooking career of a young Stephanie Hunt (aka Stephanie Smokovich) – now known to scrapbookers worldwide as the founder and designer of Bella Blvd.

Changes. In yet another sign of the decline of the popularity of pocket cards, Kelly Purkey has announced changes to her  monthly subscription club. The subscription traditionally included pocket cards and an exclusive stamp set. A second subscription option will now be made available moving forward that includes only the stamps, without the cards. The new stamp-only subscription will cost $16/month for a 12 month subscription.

Direct. Too Marker, the manufacturer of Copic markers, has announced that they are discontinuing their distribution agreement with Imagination International in the United States for the popular markers. Instead, the company plans to sell the markers directly themselves to the U.S. market.

Channels. Tonic Studios announced this week that they are changing channels. The company, which has long partnered with Hochanda for TV shopping sales, is jumping to Create and Craft TV starting in March 2019. Click here to see the full announcement.

Legal. After settling their patent infringement lawsuit against Tonic Studios in July, My Sweet Petunia moved on to another target in October: Stampin’ Up. In a widely anticipated move, My Sweet Petunia filed suit against Stampin’ Up in October 2018 alleging the company was infringing its patents on the MISTI tool by selling its Stamparatus tool. Stampin’ Up! has filed counter-claims against My Sweet Petunia challenging, among other things, the validity of one of My Sweet Petunia’s patents.

stamp-n-storage magnet sheets

Stamp-n-Storage magnet sheets in use

Wholesale. Stamp-n-Storage, which produces storage options for scrapbookers and card makers, is entering the wholesale market with its popular magnet cards for storing thin metal dies. All four sizes of Stamp-n-Storage magnet cards (5×7, 6×7, 8×7 and 8.5×11) were on display to retailers at the recent Creativation show in Phoenix. The company had previously marketed its products only via its own website and at consumer craft shows such as Stamp & Scrapbook Expo.

Adjustments. Facing a shrinking market for her company’s core Project Life products, Becky Higgins has shared with fans some major changes being taken to help ensure the health of the company moving forward. The company’s physical office space has been shut down, with all staff working from home now. The Good Life product line – the company’s foray into lifestyle products – is also going away. And they are also stopping exhibiting at consumer shows and shipping product internationally from their online store. Finally, they are discontinuing their affiliate marketing program.

In the email to consumers discussing the changes, Becky promised fans would see more video content containing Project Life projects soon, along with more online courses for the Becky Higgins classroom. The company also is planning what she described as “an adjustment in how we offer / package the Project Life product,” which may be a welcome change to many scrapbookers if it includes fewer duplicates of the 3×4 cards. Too many duplicates of those cards is a common complaint among Project Life core kit purchasers.

Chains. Michaels has announced it is closing all of the 36 Pat Catan’s stores in Michigan, Ohio, Pennsylvania, and West Virginia. The company acquired the Pat Catan stores three years ago when it bought Lamrite West, the parent company of Darice and Pat Catan’s. At the time of the acquisition, Michaels’ public statements pointed to Darice as the motivation for the acquisition, so the announcement of the retail stores’ impending closure is not particularly surprising. Michaels says it intends to rebrand up to 12 of the stores as Michaels stores and reopen them in the 2019 fiscal year. The company will also continue to maintain a warehouse for its wholesale business in Strongsville, Ohio.

“After a comprehensive review, we have decided to close all of the Pat Catan’s retail stores. We expect to rebrand and reopen up to 12 stores as new Michaels stores in fiscal 2019, and we will continue to maintain a support center and distribution center in Strongsville, Ohio to support our growing wholesale business. We believe these changes will provide more value for customers and shareholders by enabling us to leverage a more consistent merchandise assortment and eliminate duplicative retail operating expenses,” says Chuck Rubin, Chairman and CEO of The Michaels Companies. “This was not an easy decision, and I am grateful for the contributions of our Pat Catan’s Team Members. As we work through the closing process, we intend to provide employment opportunities or transition support for all Team Members.”

People. JOANN Stores has a new CEO to replace Jill Soltau, who left for JC Penney in October 2018 – and it’s a familiar face. Wade Miquelon, who had been serving as interim President and CEO since Soltau’s departure, was appointed last week as her permanent replacement. He was also given a seat on the Board of Directors as well. Miquelon joined JOANN as EVP and CFO in March 2016, and came to JOANN from The Walgreen Company.

Cruising. Michaels is partnering with Carnival Cruise Line to be their exclusive arts and crafts provider for their fleet of 26 cruise ships. Onboard ship, Carnival Cruise Line customers will have access to a variety of “Make It With Michaels” craft experiences that will rotate seasonally. And this spring, Michaels will host Carnival Cruise-themed classes in their stores.

“As we continue our mission to make it easy for parents to provide their kids with more mindful, screen-free fun, we are excited to partner with Carnival Cruise Line to inspire creativity at sea,” said Steve Carlotti, Michaels EVP of Marketing. “Carnival carries more than 5.2 million guests every year, including 800,000 kids, and this program will give guests of all ages a new and creative way to interact with our brand. As the number one player in the arts and crafts space, we are the preferred destination for making and creative play, and this new partnership is another way we are solidifying our leadership position.”

To celebrate the program’s launch, the companies are giving away five Carnival Cruises between now and April 30th. You can enter to win on the Carnival Cruise website.

Dates. Speaking of getting away, Jenn Shurkus has announced the 2019 dates for her Creative Journey Art Retreats on Cape Cod. The spring retreat will be April 27th-28th, and the fall retreat is November 2nd-November 3rd. Registration for the spring retreat opens February 17th at 9am ET.

Sold. U.K.-based Coats has sold its North American Crafts business to Spinrite, the Canadian manufacturer of yarn brands such as Caron, Bernat and Lily Sugar n’ Cream, for initial cash consideration of $37 million. The acquisition brings brands like Red Heart, Susan Bates, Aunt Lydia and Coats & Clark to Spinrite.

Reading:

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Make DIY Holiday Gift Tags with Cricut Maker

I’m a big fan of the convenience of gift bags for my holiday gifts. (And they are environmentally friendly too, since I reuse them year after year!) Extra special DIY holiday gift tags are the perfect way to punch up simple gift bags and turn them into something fabulous!

[Disclaimer: This post is sponsored by Cricut.]

These wood DIY holiday gift tags that I made with my Cricut Maker machine each have only three pieces to cut. But with this much style, no one will notice how simple they are!

Cricut DIY Holiday Gift Tags

These DIY holiday gift tags are really simple to make, because what makes them special is the material that is used. With the Knife Blade, the Cricut Maker is able to cut Basswood and Balsa Wood that is up to 3/32″ thick. The look of natural material, and the dimension that can be created, takes these tags to a whole new level!

Supplies Used:

Start your DIY holiday gift tags by using your Cricut Maker and the Cricut Knife Blade + Drive Housing to cut out all of the wood parts from the projects.

Cricut Maker cutting wood

Cutting the 1/16″ basswood with the Knife Blade requires using a Cricut Strong Grip Mat. You also need to fasten your wood down to the mat with plenty of painter’s masking tape. Don’t skimp on the masking tape, and make sure that it is pressed firmly down!

(Don’t forget to slide the white rings on your rollers to the right to get them out of the way of your wood as it passes under the rollers.)

Cricut Maker cutting wood

When you are done cutting the wood pieces, switch to the regular blade and a light hold mat to cut the two patterned paper pieces for the DIY gift tags.

When you are done, you should have these three pieces to make the Christmas tree gift tag. Use a glue like Mod Podge to assemble them into a sandwich in the order shown.

DIY Holiday Tag parts

You will also have these three pieces for the Christmas ornament DIY holiday gift tag. Paint the ornament base with black chalkboard paint, and paint the frame red.

(Here’s a great idea to customize this ornament tag – Instead of using chalkboard paint, paint the base with regular paint and cut a photo to fit in the center of the frame!)

DIY Holiday Tag parts

Use glue again to assemble these pieces with the patterned paper on one side of the ornament base, and the red frame on the other. (The patterned paper is optional, but sure brightens up the back of the tag.)

After the chalkboard paint is cured, rub it with a piece of chalk to prepare the surface for writing. Then you can write on your tag with chalk over and over!

DIY Holiday Gift Tag with chalkboard

Since they are made of wood, these durable DIY holiday gift tags can be used again and again. Or, after you use them, hang them on the Christmas tree as ornaments!

DIY Holiday Gift Tag

Attach your DIY holiday gift tags with a  loop of baker’s twine or ribbon and enjoy all the compliments that will come your way!

DIY Holiday Gift Tags

This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Cricut. The opinions and text are all mine.

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Easy DIY Holiday Cards with Cricut Maker

Hello Cricut lovers! The snow is flying up north and cooks across the country are prepping their Thanksgiving turkey menus, so that must mean it is time to talk DIY Holiday Cards!

[Disclosure: This is a sponsored post written on behalf of Cricut, but all opinions expressed are my own.]

Today, I’m bringing you two clean and simple DIY holiday card designs that, with the help of Cricut Maker and a few of my favorite Cricut tools, will make easy work of your handmade holiday cards without sacrificing creativity or style!

Cricut Merry Christmas house card

Supplies Needed:

The first step to making this handmade holiday card is to cut all of the pieces out on your Cricut Maker machine. The card base requires the use of both a Cricut pen and the single Scoring Wheel.

Creating Card Base on Cricut Maker

When you peel the card base off of the mat, some of the waste from those tiny faux stitching spots will cling in the holes. That just happens when a cut is so tiny. The piercer from the Cricut Papercrafting Tool Set is the perfect solution for getting rid of these hangers-on! Just use its tiny point to poke the pieces that need to be removed, and they will pop right out!

Using Cricut Scraper Tool

This homemade holiday card can be infinitely customized to create different looks using different cardstock and patterned papers…and it’s a great way to use up your scraps!

DIY Holiday Cards with Cricut Maker

Using the knife blade to cut basswood is simple if you remember a few simple things. It will cut up to 3/32″ thick, and your cuts can’t be smaller than 1/2″ in size. (That includes interior cuts in your shapes.)

To do the actual cutting, tape your basswood down to a purple (Strong Grip) Cricut cutting mat with masking tape. Make sure it is in the upper left hand corner of the measurement grid, but not outside it. See those little white wheels spread along the middle area of the steel roller bars? Slide those white wheels to the right so they are outside of the area where your basswood will pass under. Then you can load your Cricut Knife Blade in the adaptive tool system, and follow the on screen prompts in Cricut Design Space to select your material and load the mat into the machine.

Cutting Wood Veneer with Cricut Maker

After you have completed cutting all of your pieces, you should have all of these elements, ready to assemble your homemade holiday card! Layer your house together, and adhere it to the front of your card. Your DIY holiday card is complete!

DIY Holiday Card pieces

Mid-century modern, and the pastel Christmas that goes with it, is very trendy. The same techniques and Cricut tools that I used to make that cute country Christmas card above can be used to bring a taste of retro mid-century to your Christmas cards.

Retro DIY Holiday Cards with Cricut

Supplies Needed:

(If you like the design but aren’t a fan of pastel Christmas, try making this DIY holiday card with a dark background, and dark green or silver trees for a midnight on Christmas Eve look.)

To make this card, first cut out all of the elements of the handmade holiday card design using your Cricut Maker machine and the project file. (Follow the instructions above on how to cut out the wood tree from basswood for the left side of the card.)

Once all of the elements are cut out, paint the wooden tree with Plaid FolkArt Pickle Wash following the instructions on the bottle. (I chose that particular paint because it allows the grain of the wood to show through, so the person receiving your DIY holiday card can see that the tree is actually wood!)

Painting wood veneer for DIY Holiday Cards

While your paint dries, grab the Distresser tool from the Cricut Papercrafting Tool Set and get to work rubbing it along the edges of the tree with the sentiment on it! Distressing that edge gives it more dimension, and adds interest to that tree so that it can hold its own in the design with the other two elements.

distressed edge on diy holiday card

Once all of your elements are prepared, you can quickly assemble them.

Cutting the stars out of the Cricut Adhesive Foil means that these small items are easy to adhere. (Plus the foil cuts so beautifully at these miniature sizes!) The paper piercer from the Cricut Papercrafting Tool Set is your secret shortcut for getting perfect placement of tiny sticky items like this! No more getting them stuck to your fingers, or to each other… just pop the end of the piercer under them and use it as a tiny wand to lay them down with! Place them, put your finger on top to hold them in place, and slip the piercer out from underneath. (Do this carefully, because it is a piercer, after all!) Then just press and rub firmly to make sure the foil adheres well!

Cricut paper piercer

I can’t wait to see how you all customize these DIY holiday cards for your family and friends! Tag me at @scrapbookupdate on Instagram to share yours!

This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Cricut. The opinions and text are all mine.

 

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Cricut Maker FAQ (& Paris Pillow Project too!)

Everyday life is just what we do while we are waiting to go on our next amazing adventure, right? I decided to bring my favorite city – Paris – home with an easy pillow project. I’m going to show you how to make it, along the way I’ll answer some of the most frequently asked questions about the Cricut Maker machine!

[Disclosure: This is a sponsored post written on behalf of Cricut, but all opinions expressed are my own.]

Paris Pillow Cricut Maker FAQ

I’ve been playing with my new Cricut Maker machine for a few months. Even with all of my experience with previous machines, some things have surprised me. And there’s some things I didn’t learn from the information I gathered about the machine before I got it that I know now.

Here’s some of the things that I wish I knew before I got my new Cricut Maker machine:

  • Fabric Cutting: Even though I was super excited about the fabric cutting ability of the Maker’s rotary blade, I assumed that it would have limitations based on my experience with a rotary cutter for quilting. Boy, was I wrong! I’m still experimenting with its capabilities but as you can see from the flowers on this pillow, it can do way more than a regular rotary cutter.
  • Cartridges: I knew the Maker didn’t have a cartridge slot, but what I didn’t know was that it has a cartridge adapter! The adapter plugs into a USB slot on the Maker or your laptop so that you can load new cartridges into Design Space. All of my cartridges are already loaded in Design Space, but hey, I like to know that I still have the option to load more!
  • Tablet Support: The design of the new Maker machine is really pretty…but I had no idea it was functional too! That groove along the top of the machine, under the cover? It turns out it will hold your tablet in place while you use it with your Maker! And for those all day crafting sessions, you can plug into the USB plug on the side of your Maker to recharge your tablet. (Note to self: Add that to my list of reasons to buy a new iPad!)

Those are some of the things I’ve learned about the Maker in my time with it. But let’s take a look at some of the most frequently asked questions about the Maker:

Q: What makes the Maker different from other Cricut machines?

A: The biggest difference between the Maker and the previous generation of Cricut machines is the Adaptive Tool System. That’s the “gear wheel” that you see in the right hand tool holder when you look at the front of the machine. This gives the machine the ability to create 10x more power with new tools like the scoring wheel, knife blade, and rotary blade.

Q: What materials can I cut?

A: The Adaptive Tool System opens up a whole new world of materials that the Maker can cut. It can cut thicker leathers, balsa wood, matboard, and the one I’m most excited about – fabric without a backer!

Q: What types of fabric can I cut (without a backer)

A. The answer is…pretty much anything! Cricut now offers packages of coordinated cotton fabrics to use with its machines, or you can hit the fabric store and grab whatever suits your fancy (and your project).

Q: What kind of DIY projects can I make?

A: A better question is what can’t you make? With vinyl for making seasonal and home decor items, iron-on for tshirts & totes, fabric cutting for quilting…and did I mention that Riley Blake and Simplicity have an entire library of sewing patterns in the Cricut Design Access subscription now? Sew gifts, doll clothes, and seasonal decor without the hassle of hand cutting (and know it will be perfect every time).

Q: Will I use the machine enough to justify the price?

A: From DIY parties to DIY gifts…the Cricut Maker makes it easy to finally do all of those things that you’ve been wanting to do. Impress your friends with handmade gifts, make tshirts for the kids sports team….the possibilities are endless!

So, onto the project! Paris is always a good idea, right? This adorable pillow is way simpler to make than it looks. The best part is that the envelope pillow sham is easy to take off to clean – or swap out for something seasonal.

Paris Pillow Cricut Maker FAQ

Supplies Needed: 

I love working with coordinated fabric collections for the same reason that I love working with coordinated paper collections! It makes it so easy to do a project with a variety of patterns without the hassle of coordinating. This Sweet Prairie designer fabric by Riley Blake for Cricut is so beautiful! I’m sure I’ll be using the leftovers for other projects!

Cricut Sweet Prairie fabric

With my pink fabric cutting mat and the rotary blade, the Cricut Maker sliced through the cotton fabric like butter. It also cut my wool felt that I used for one of the flowers beautifully.

Cricut Maker cutting fabric

After I cut out all of the pieces of the design (a process that is simple but just requires some patience with the many different colors), I started adhering it all. I worked pretty close to the middle of the 16″ by 36″ fabric strip. I started with the big pieces, and then worked down to the smaller ones. This process went so fast with my Cricut Easy Press 2!

Cricut Easy Press Eiffel Tower pillow

Getting the leaves positioned is a bit tricky since they are kind of floating in the middle of space and their placement needs to be accurate. I positioned them in place with the flowers to get the whole design right, and then lifted the flowers off and pressed them in place.

Positioning Iron-On to Apply

Next I ironed on the center elements of each flower. When they cooled down, I sewed them down using buttons to hold them in place. I could have sewed all around the outside edge to attache them. But by pinning them down in the centers, the outside edges pop up off the surface, giving them some realistic dimension.

After the flowers were attached, I used invisible thread to sew down a few sequins around them. This step is optional but I like the detail it creates!

Close up of finished flowers

With everything attached, it’s time to sew up the pillow! On each short end of the fabric, I rolled the fabric over twice towards the backside and then stitched close to the turned over edge.

side hems on pillow case

When I started laying out my design, I made small marks near the edge of my fabric to mark the maximum width of my design. As you can see below, I accidentally started my design outside the mark on the right. So I found the center of my design, and made new marks on each side to show where to fold the sides so the design would be centered. For this 16″ pillow, I made my marks about 15.75″ apart.

Marking the fold for pillow

Once you have your marks, fold first one side in over the design, and then the other side. (If you look real hard, you can see the word Paris inside my pillow.) Pin the raw edges together. Stitch 3/8″ from the edge along both of those raw edges.

Pinning Envelope Pillow Cover

And that’s it! I turned my pillow cover right side out and stuffed it with my pillow form. (Tip: Don’t forget to get your form all the way down into the corners!) Now thanks to my Cricut Maker we have a beautiful addition to our bedroom!

Paris Pillow Cricut Maker FAQ

This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Cricut . The opinions and text are all mine.

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