Sandy's Crafty Creations » Sandy's Crafty Creations is a blog featuring handmade cards, mini albums, mixed media art journals, scrapbook page layouts and tutorials created by Sandy Trefger of Weatherford, Texas.

For the Graphic 45 booth at Creativation (CHA) show in January, I made three different types of folded cards.  The cards were sent off to the Graphic 45 office and I did not take notes on how I made them. Oops.  Never do that!  I've had several requests from followers on how I made the gate fold one.  It was a bit embarrassing to say I didn't know.  The cards are still at the Graphic 45 office so I didn't have them to look at.  So over the weekend while I was at a retreat at the Compass Centre in Mt. Calm, Texas, I decided to have a go at reconstructing this one.  After MANY attempts with cardstock in the trash, I figured it out!  I took photos and immediately did a Snapguide tutorial on it.  If you were one of the ones wanting to make this card, here's how:
Check out How to Create Graphic 45 Gatefold Cards by Sandy Trefger on Snapguide.

I added some pretty flowers from my stash that I had with me for the card above.  This would be one you'd hand deliver or have hand cancelled so it wouldn't get damaged in the mail.  The one below is flatter and could be mailed easily.  Both are made out of papers leftover from a bigger project with Graphic 45 Cafe Parisian.  Both of these are tied closed with ribbon, the same as the instructions in the Snapguide tutorial; however, if you wanted you could make them close with magnetic snaps. Just be sure to put the magnets on before adding your patterned paper.

These are really quick and easy to make, once you remember or learn how. Ha, ha.

Happy Crafting!

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Yes, we had a Tortie cat named Portia.  Or maybe I should say she had us.  Because can you really ever own a cat?  I think it's more that they own their people.

At first I wasn't going to blog this nor share as it's really hard to do.  But maybe I need to even if it's just for myself.  It's no secret to most that we own many cats.   Some we chose and they stayed and some chose our house and they stayed.  We love them, feed them and take care of them the best we can.  But Portia was special.  If you've ever had a Tortie that loved you, I think you'd understand. She was unique.  Possessive.  What was hers was hers including her people. Mischievous.  Adventurous.  And so many times we could have lost her because of her adventurous nature. She had stowed away in the bed of my husband's truck and ridden over 20 miles to the airport on the highway through many red lights and stop signs and never jumped out. She made herself known once he got out of the truck that she was there with her meow.  That time she got to spend the entire day in the hanger with all the guys laughing that she'd be lost forever. Not true.  All you had to do was call "Portia, let's go" and she was there ready for the return ride home (in the cab of a truck) and a quick stop at Dairy Queen for a shared ice cream cone.  She stowed away in our construction Bobcat Tractor, sitting happily in the seat while the Bobcat was on a trailer being towed to a job site. Again, through many stop signs and red lights to end up looking innocently at my husband as he went to unload the equipment.  She spent that day in the cab of the work truck.  She stowed away in the fishing boat as it was towed to the lake.  There she was standing on the deck of the boat as my husband backed it into the lake.  She spent some time riding along and "fishing" until someone arrived to pick her up and take her home.  Portia stowed away once again in the trash trailer, hidden down under the junk that was being taken to the dump yard.  Causing quite a commotion when it was thought that she was a big rat.  She was saved and brought back home.

Portia could open closet doors so she could spend quiet time in the dark alone away from all the other cats.  She could also open cabinet doors for her weekly if not daily "cabinet meetings." Water.  If she heard you turn on an outside faucet she'd suddenly be there waiting for you to fill her water can so she could drink and drink and drink.  Ice. As much as she loved water, she loved water with ice even better.  Your drink was never safe.  Many times we'd turn to see a Tortie's head stuck way down in the glass drinking away.  Or she would demand fresh water in her bowl along with a couple of cubes of ice. Portia.  A kitty with a loud purr when cuddled in your lap or lying next to your head at bed time.  Soft whiskers in your face late at night to check on you or maybe to let you know you were snoring a bit too loud.

Portia.  She would have been 17 years old this coming September.  Four weeks ago she came inside and my daughter noticed a bubble of blood on her lip.  We immediately took her to the vet only to be told she had a tumor on her jaw. Surgery would have been costly and difficult for her to recover due to her age.  So we brought her home and cared for her and watched her carefully. Allowing her to roam when she wanted, sleep where she wanted and provided her with liquid type cat food and lots of ice water.  We gently washed her mouth and even washed her fur with a damp cloth.  She would sleep for hours lying on my chest or on Eddie's lap in the recliner.We allowed her to spend time in our camper because it was one of her favorite places as she was the only cat allowed to go camping with us.  She spent hours in the shop while my husband worked as that was a favorite place too.

Friday night, March 17th while I was away at a crafting retreat 2 hours from home.  She began to bleed more and we knew it was time because we didn't want her to go into severe pain from the tumor breaking her jaw or to choke to death on the knot in her throat that was getting bigger or the blood.  My daughter and her husband took Portia to the Emergency Vet Hospital.  They were her first "human parents" and wanted to be there.  (The story on how she became "ours" is a whole other story.)  But we all loved her.  They called me at the retreat and put on the speaker phone and I talked to her and told her I loved her and how good a kitty she was.  She was purring and rubbed the phone.  Our Portia.  Now she's gone and  buried under a big pecan tree on our property behind  our house with Ava (Brandy & Brandon's Chocolate Lab)  who had to leave in August and Piper cat who left us last month plus others--Jules, G.W. and a couple of unknown cats that we feared were ours.

I miss her.  Portia. Our Tortie cat.  There's a poem about the loss of a dog.  In the end it says "a heart bent by a dog."  My heart has been bent by a cat.


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  • ValerieMarch 22, 2017 - 11:18 am

    Oh, Sandy, I am so sorry! I loved your post about her. I am sad with you. I remember when I blogged about my horse when he died I cried all the way through it. Hugs my friend. I understand 🙁ReplyCancel

    • sandytrefgerMarch 22, 2017 - 1:44 pm

      Thank you Valerie! Now don’t get me to crying again. Oh what am I saying I’ll cry every time I see her photo at least for a few weeks I suppose. Only those who love animals and have had a special one like your horse truly understand. Thanks for your kind words. I miss you!ReplyCancel

  • Tracy MartinezMarch 22, 2017 - 12:19 pm

    So sorry for your loss. Some animals become so much more than mere pets and it’s so hard when they leave us. Hugs to you.ReplyCancel

    • sandytrefgerMarch 22, 2017 - 1:43 pm

      Thank you so much Tracy for your kind words. It’s true they do become much more. It’s hard when they leave. I sometimes feel foolish for being so sad as she was just a cat but she was our special cat. I knew this day was coming because of her age but still..not ready. Thank you for reading her post and commenting. It means a lot.ReplyCancel

  • Patti WyattMarch 22, 2017 - 8:45 pm

    So sorry for your loss. I loved reading your story and all the wonderful memories you have with her. We love our animals dearly and it hurts when we lose them. We have “elderly” animals right now with a large 12 year old dog and 11 year old cat. We will love and cherish each day we have with them. Thank you for sharing your sweet story.ReplyCancel

    • sandytrefgerMarch 23, 2017 - 11:33 am

      Thank you Patti! I appreciate so much your sweet words. It does hurt to lose them but then it hurts more to see them sick and not be able to help them. We knew her years were numbered but hoped we’d have at least a few more. Hugs to you and your elderly pets. They are the sweetest.ReplyCancel

  • TrishaMarch 23, 2017 - 7:36 am

    I’m so sorry for your loss, Sandy. What a wonderful story about a beautiful girl 🙂 No animal is ever just an animal, they are always part of your family 🙂 I have to dogs, sisters, who are my youngest children. They make the day much brighter. Sending hugs to you!ReplyCancel

    • sandytrefgerMarch 23, 2017 - 11:34 am

      Thank you Trisha! She was definitely a part of our family. We have the other cats and one that’s in the house exclusively but each has a different personality and mannerisms. Portia was so unique. She loved us so much and we her. But she’s not hurting now. And that’s good.ReplyCancel

  • Lynne SmithMarch 23, 2017 - 7:55 am

    Sandy, I am so sorry for your loss. I have 3 cats and 2 dogs all rescues. I love them all dearly. My children are grown and out of the house so when the animals greet me at the door when I get home from work they make my day complete.ReplyCancel

    • sandytrefgerMarch 23, 2017 - 11:35 am

      Thank you Lynne. Portia was rescued from the no kill shelter as a kitten so she has been a big part of our lives for almost 17 years. We sure miss her. Give your cats and dogs a hug from me. They are all special.ReplyCancel

  • Marilyn ShannonMarch 23, 2017 - 10:39 am

    Sandy, I am very sorry you lost your sweet kitty. I know how much our pets mean to us…as my pup sleeps here in my lap as I type this.

    • sandytrefgerMarch 23, 2017 - 11:37 am

      Thank you so much Marilyn. They do mean a lot to us though some times they are a little pain. Ha, ha. I’m having a difficult time remembering that I don’t have to cover my drinking glass to keep it safe on my desk as Portia always would sneak up and drink out of it. Heck I wish she was here one more time to do it. It was always so funny to see how far she could get her head in to the glass. (I use big tall ones). Give your pup a hug for me.ReplyCancel

  • Sherry HMarch 23, 2017 - 11:22 am

    Hi Sandy. I’m so sorry to hear that Portia is in kitty heaven, but what a delightful eulogy you gave her! She lived a bold and fiercely loving life; she obviously only wanted to be with the people she loved. I know it’s like losing a member of your family and I send a big hug.ReplyCancel

    • sandytrefgerMarch 23, 2017 - 11:39 am

      Thank you Sherry. She was indeed a bold kitty. All those stow away adventures were only because she wanted to be every where my husband with. She absolutely loved him. In fact, she’s the one that converted him from a so-so animal lover to a cat lover nearly as bad as me. Truthfully I guess she was his cat. And I know he feels sad though he doesn’t show it quite like I do. Thanks for the big hug and I send one back to you.ReplyCancel

  • Shelia GrayMarch 23, 2017 - 8:58 pm

    I’m so very sorry about Portia. We lost our Sylvie to kidney failure 9 months ago, and I know all too well that your loss cuts deeply. I’m praying for you and your family, and hope that your memories of sweet Portia will be comforting to you. Thank you for sharing your lovely memories of Portia with all of us.ReplyCancel

  • Carol LMarch 24, 2017 - 6:04 am

    This is the most beautifully written, heartfelt tribute to your precious Portia! I read it with grins, giggles and sadness with her passing that only a pet owner can truly appreciate. You were blessed to have her for so many years and those wonderful memories will never be forgotten. We lost all 3 of our dogs within a 2 year period and it’s been such a void in our lives ever since, so I understand what you’re going through. Sending hugs and sweet memories to carry you through the coming days.ReplyCancel

I am so in love with the new Vintage Hollywood collection from Graphic 45!  I designed this mini Passport Album to capture all the vintage vibes of this wonderful paper design.  You can see lots more of this mini album on the Graphic 45 blog and a Snapguide tutorial on how to create one of your own.

This will be one of the projects at my Graphic 45 Workshop Retreat April 6-9th along with a matching train case that you can store your album in!  Contact me for more information about attending the workshop.

Happy Crafting!


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  • Sherry HickeyMarch 21, 2017 - 1:53 pm

    Wow, Sandy! This looks amazing! I am going over to the blog to see your stunning album! I would love more than anything to come to one of your workshops–maybe one day!!ReplyCancel

Hello and Happy  Monday!  Today we have started a new card challenge over on Cards in Envy  for Black and White cards with a smidge of color.  To make sure I didn't go overboard on the "smidge of color" part, I kept this card simple like the ones we did for the last challenge.

Here's a list of what I used to create this one:

  • Black Cardstock
  • White Cardstock (I cut an extra layer of the white and scored it to give it the lines you see)
  • Heidi Swapp 6x6 Favorite Things patterned paper
  • Celebrate Teal Braid Ribbon
  • Teal Flat Flower, Petaloo
  • Acrylic Sentiment from my stash (sorry I don't know the name of this set)
  • Prima Chalk Ink in Teal Damask

I really like how this turned out in the black & white with just that bit of color pop.  I hope you'll join us for this challenge going on until April 2nd over on Cards in Envy.

Happy Crafting!

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I've always loved putting my photos into scrapbook albums.  Way back when I was a teenager, I helped my sister put all our parents photos into scrapbook albums and spent a summer, labeling and documenting the stories they had told us about their families, courtship and marriage.  And then as an adult I discovered Creative Memories and got hooked using their techniques and products.  Each year my scrapbooking style changed and evolved with the latest trends and before long I was using almost everything in my scrapbook albums that was available in the scrapbook store.  When I discovered the beautiful Graphic 45 paper collections, I began to add them into my layouts too.

I received the Deluxe Collectors Edition of the Olde Curiosity Shoppe from Graphic 45 and immediately decided to design a quick and simple layout for the January CHA show.  With a favorite photo, a couple of sheets of the paper collection, a Graphic 45 metal embellishment, ribbon and flowers; I quickly had a finished page.  One trick for doing layouts with Graphic 45 papers is to use solid cardstock to mat the photo.  This helps to bring the focus back to the photo espeically if the patterned paper you've chosen has lots of detail like the butterflies.

You may feel hesitant to use the thicker flowers and metal on your layouts and if you are putting it into an album, you might want to go with something flatter.  However, I will be putting this layout into a shadowbox style wall frame for display.

This layout is featured today on the Graphic 45 blog along with Pam's Midnight Masquerade invitation that she designed for the show.  Please go over and check them both out and leave a comment to let me know you were there.

Happy Crafting!

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  • HeidiMarch 17, 2017 - 8:37 am

    That is a gorgeous layout! I am a big fan of the graphic 45 paper pads. They have such gorgeous designs.ReplyCancel

  • Karon HMarch 19, 2017 - 9:50 am

    Beautiful design and love that butterfly paper. TFSReplyCancel