Sara Stars

trying to be creative ever day…

Graphic Two Tier Cake with Cake Crystals® and Fondant Bow

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I have admired beautiful tiered cakes forever.  I always wanted to make one.   My sister was throwing a fashion show birthday party for my niece and I thought that was the perfect occasion to try out my skills…or lake of cake decorating skills… I don’t know how to use the icing bag that well, so I needed to design the cake without any piped icing requirements.  I had found these Cake Crystals® online, and they were an absolute requirement for my design.  Here is the result:

Graphic Cake with Cake Crystals and Fondant Bow

Graphics, Cake Crystals and Fondant!

Brief synopsis of how I did this:

I purchased these fabulous Cake Crystals®, they were the catalyst for the inspiration…

I found these  Edible Image® Designer Prints™ and I thought they would give a lot of style to my cake, without me having to cut out intricate fondant, I also noted how the designers used these prints on fondant update it a little.

I watched several videos on YouTube.

How to add a 2nd Cake Layer


Thank you ExpertVillage

Assembling a Wedding Cake – I watched several videos on how to make a two tier cake, but I got the most out of this one.


Thank you Epicuriousdotcom!

How to Smooth a Cake – Now this one I watched about 10 times to get the technique, my Iphone sat next to me on the counter and I referenced it over and over again!!


Thank you SeriousCakes (You should check out her YouTube vids they are so good!)

Again, armed with my iPhone, rolled fondant, ruler and pizza cutter…I referenced the CakeBoss’s blog post: How to Make a Fondant Bow

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Written by sarastars

August 3, 2010 at 4:23 pm

Hummingbird Embellished Godiva Truffle Box Favor

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This is the first time I used the Sure Cuts A Lot software with my Cricut Expression.  I am thrilled with the endless possibilities.

Hummingbird Favor

Hummingbird Favor

I embellished Godiva’s 4 piece truffle box around the theme of my mom’s 60th birthday.  She love hummingbirds and I wanted to tastefully showcase this.   The Godiva box is already elegant and tasteful on it’s own, so I didn’t feel compelled to change it.  I simply cut a scalloped oval that fit nicely between the gold embossing on the box and then added the hummingbird on a foam pop-up dot on the knotted ribbon!   For the hummingbird I sprayed it with Tattered Angels Glimmer Mist in midnight blue.

Thank you to Freeillustrotor.org for the beautiful hummingbird vector!

Hummingbird for SCAL and Cricut

You can use this hummingbird with Sure Cuts A Lot and your Cricut

Written by sarastars

December 2, 2009 at 10:25 pm

Handmade Godiva Favor Boxes for Under $5

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I know that I cannot be the only one met the challenge of creating, making birthday, baby shower or bridal favors on a regular basis.  In our family we rarely have birthdays or showers that require less then 40 chic favors, in this case I had to make 100 for all the family that would be coming to visit my newborn son – Maxen.

I feel strongly that there is a undeniable elegance in a  fine chocolate favor.  I came up with this idea for using the Godiva Pearls because they contain little confections of chocolate perfection!   I thought the tin was a great blank canvas to do something fun and the dimensions work perfect with standard 12×12 scrapbooking paper.  In addition I needed to make a hundred so I couldn’t go over a budget of $5 each.

Chic Welcome Baby Favors using Godiva Chocolate

Chic Welcome Baby Favors using Godiva Chocolate

The Godiva Pear tin is 3 6/16″ high and the diameter is 5″.  You can easily wrap 3 tins with 1 12×12 scrapbook paper.  I cut my strips to 3 6/16″ x 6″.  My ribbon was cut to 5 1/2″.  I used McGill’s punch for the vellum envelope, but you could easily cut a an envelope with your cricut or use a different embellishment all together.

Let me know if you decide to make these, I would love to post your work here!

Written by sarastars

December 2, 2009 at 9:29 pm

Halloween Party Invitations with the Cricut

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I finally finished my Halloween party invitations…they were some work, but I think well worth the effort.  Using my Cricut Expression with the Fabulous Finds and Storybook cartridge, I created this great looking 3 fold out invitation, with the details of the party hidden behind these great little doors.

See below for more details.

Halloween Party InvitationsHalloween Party Invitations

Here are some basic steps to how I created these:

1.  Use the Cricut and the Fabulous Finds cartrige.  Cut a gray or black bazzil cardstock <trialbm2> at 6″

2.  Cut <trialbm2> at 6″ with blackout option from Halloween print paper  (I used  Making Memories Spook Alley collection).  This year the paper collection is double sided so you can use that duel sides to save some time.

3.  I cut 3 <trialbm2> at 6″ from various Halloween print paper with the inserts option.

4.  The Halloween print cutout is your backing, adhere the 3 different inserts to the wrong-side of the Halloween paper.

5. Print the location of “where” you are going to have the party on a small strip of vellum and adhere on top of the left most insert.

6.  Print the location of “When” you are going to have the party on a small strip of vellum and adhere to the middle insert in a centered location so when you place the solid cardstock over you can view it through the “window”.

7.  The “RSVP” information gets placed in the same fashion as “When” but in the bottom centered location.

8.  The right most insert should just have an embellishment element that fits the “Beware” theme.  I just used a variety puffy vampire, witches or bats.

9.Adhere the plain cardstock on top of the 3 inserts.

10.  Cut a 1″ strip of paper from Halloween paper and glue that to the top of the solid cardstock.  Use scissors to trim the strip around the top.

11.   Storybook <crnrSwrl> with Accent/Frame option and cut at 2.5″ from black cardstock to create the accent on the left most window.

12.  Storybook <crnrSwrl> with Fancy/Corner option and cut 2.25″ from black cardstock to create the accent of the right most window.

13. Fabulous Finds <tab6> at 1″ and cut out 4 tabs from the maroon paper for each invitation (these were really tricky – if you can think of a better way to put the labels on – I advise this is the area to be more simple and save yourself some time.

14.  I printed the text “Where”, “When”, “RSVP” and “Beware” repeated on green paper then used Fabulous Find <tab6> at 1″ with the insert option and used the center point option to align the blade in the center of the text.

15.  Adhere the inserts to the back of doors of each section.  Fold them over.  Align and ahere the inserts.  Then close the tabs and adhere.

16.  I used Making Memories spook alley embellishments to embellish each tab.

17.  Use a embosser tool to fold each section properly.

18.  Add an embellishment to cover each hole that is on the backside of your invite (mine are from the Making Memories Spook Alley)

18.  Wrap with raffia or twine.

19.  Use another embellishment to tie of your work of art 🙂

20.  Feel free to ask any other questions…enjoy!

Written by sarastars

October 22, 2009 at 3:17 am

Posted in Halloween, Invitations

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Cricut Explosion Box – Mini Scrapbook Album

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There are lots of explosion box tutorials and examples out and about on the net.  I saw the Bo Bunny Birthday Explosion Kit in my local scrapbook store and fell in love with it.  I had to make one, but on my terms (I just can’t buy someone else’s kit, and I was on mission to make something for my sis’s upcoming Pink, Black & White Birthday Party).

This was the first project I did when I got my Cricut Expression.  My sister was having a Pink, Black & White birthday party – her first birthday party in a very long time.   I wanted to make a mini scrapbook album that had a lot flair and matched the theme of her birthday.

Scrapbook Explosion Box - Mini Albumi

Scrapbook Explosion Box - Mini Album

There is a great Scrapbook Explosion Box Tutorial at Scrapbook Crazy that goes over the basics of creating this album, however my inspiration piece used the four corners for photo mats, embellishments and journal entries.

Scrapbook Explosion Box Diagram

Scrapbook Explosion Box Diagram

Instead of cutting out the corners of your outer layer, you will be cutting one side of each corner and scoring the other.  By  following the diagram on the right, you can take advantage of your corner space to use for extra photos, journal spots and embellishment.

In addition if you cut the inner to the 11″x11″ and 10″x10″, you get left with really small square mats, and actually adding photos is tricky enough with a square matte.  I made the second layer another 12″x12″, but with this on has the corners cut out.  The inner-most layer was cut to 11″x11″ and the square were scored and to be 3 3/4″ squares.

I used my Cricut Expression and Storybook cartridge to embellish and add the flair to this mini album.  For added personalization I added my sister’s monogram to the middle square.  Black ribbon, pearls and brads were used to embellish.

The black and white papers I used were from a paper pack I got at Target.

Upon writing this post I found another scrappers photo album that many beautiful examples of these explosion boxes.  Check it out at Explosion Box Albums by Syrena.

In addition there is a Cricut Design Studio cut file here, that will cut your inner layers, you could probably modify it to cut the way I have in the diagram above.

Written by sarastars

October 11, 2009 at 12:34 am

Halloween Boo Treats – Free Boo Poem and Boo Signs

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In early October a few years ago, my kids and were relaxing in the evening when the doorbell rang….when we opened the door, there were two little treat bags and this cool Halloween poem that brings the “secrete santa” spirit to the Halloween season.  My kids loved it, and every year since we have been upping our game and creating treats to “Boo” our friend, neighbors and cousins.  I have included the instructions and the poem on how to “Boo” and the “Boo” sign you will need to print both of these out and include them with your treats.

Boo Poem – Free Download (no advertising!)
Boo Ghost Sign (no advertising!)

Halloween Boo Treats

Halloween Boo Treats

Admittedly this is almost the same project as my previous post, but since we were in the rhythm and we weren’t giving these to same group, so be it.

Inspiration for these came from – http://monkeydoodlecricut.blogspot.com/

For these handmade card stock popcorn boxes I used my Cricut Expression with the Tags, Bags and More and Stretch Your Imagination cartridges.  I cut them at 6″.  I printed the card stock my self using Atomic Cupcake’s Haunted Twilight Scrapbooking Digital Kit (I ran it through my printer twice to get the double side effect.  I used the scraps and the non-pattern side of my printed card stock to create the spider.  The hat and shoes for the spider were just had colored in by me and the kids using a black marker.  The corners are embellished by my daughter using crystals we got at Michael’s.

I bought all the stuff at Target, but since they don’t have most of it online, you could complete this project from your craft room with out going to the by getting everything at Oriental Trading Company, I have put links to what I would substitute with (in fact I kind of wish I had done my shopping there.

For the candy we used the following (but there shouldn’t be any shortage of ideas in that department!):

  • Trolli Frite crawlers
  • Wonka Spooky Nerds and Sweettarts
  • Sour Punch Twists
  • Hershey’s Halloween Wrapped Mini’s – I loved these because they were wrapped in green, orange, purple and black foil – really shiny!
  • Palmer Double Crisp Monster Munny

Happy Booing!!

Please leave follow up questions or comments!

Written by sarastars

October 9, 2009 at 8:12 pm

Almost Candy-Free Unisex Birthday Favors

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Unfortunately I have been really sick the last few weeks, and my daughter’s birthday was on the 6th.  This is the first year I am not doing full on birthday bash.  We decided to take her to Disneyland and that I would do fun treats that we would work on together for all her friends.

It seems like most of my craft projects are always invites or favors and the way my family is I am always making at least 25 of the same thing.  So I like to hybrid the projects with scrapbook digital elements and paper to save costs and trips to the craft store.  Sara’s class has 30 kids so I needed to make 30 unisex birthday favors!!  In addition I don’t like giving just a bag full of candy, one type of candy/chocolate that was my guideline.  Here is what we came up with for goodies and the box.

Candy Free Kid's Birthday Favors

Candy Free Kid's Birthday Favors

I love the Tags, Bags and More cartridge for my Cricut Expression and I was intent on using one of the boxes on it, but being able to cut 2 on 12×12 card stock and still have a decent sized box.  The popcorn box could cut 2 at the 5 1/2″ setting and still be about 4 1/2″ high.

I downloaded the Affair To Remember and Perfect Party Pack digital scrapbook kits from ShabbyPrincess.com. We used the Perfect Party Pack to print out 60 mini candy bar wrappers, and I printed the striped pattern paper from the Affair To Remember.   Sara loved wrapping the chocolates – we had to remove the Mr. Goodbars, so we didn’t have peanuts.  We cut the Birthday Party Hats and Presents from the Potpourri Basket Cricut Expression Cartridge.

Goodies we included:

  • Z Wind Up toys in assorted colors and characters – fish, frogs, robots, dinosaurs.  I got mine at Kitson Kids, but I found them online here – http://www.tintoyarcade.com/brands/Z-Wind-Ups.html
  • 2 different colors of modeling clay and directions on how to make a little clay characters – by Roseart @ Target (not available online)
  • Bright colored mechanical pencils – Target (not available online)
  • Camoflouge Chapsticks – Kitson Kids online at Patina Stores
  • Fruit Tape – Target
  • Hershey’s Minis wrapped with the candy wrappers – Target

Popcorn Box Supplies

  • Bazzil Cardstock from the Tropical Paper Pack
  • Diagonal Striped Paper from digital scrapbook kit: Affair To Remember
  • Cellaphane Baggies
  • Assorted Ribbon
  • Cricut Expression with the Tags, Bags and More and Potpurri Basket cartridges
  • Cellophane Bags are by Highland Supply Corp.  I get them a wholesale floral supply place called Shinoda Design Center in Orange County, CA

Written by sarastars

October 8, 2009 at 2:19 am