Blue Cricket Designs Halloween Flash Back

If this is your first Halloween here on Blue Cricket Design You are in for a treat! I am featuring the hottest Halloween craft ideas on the web.

Last year at this time I was knee deep in Halloween Ideas! Halloween is by far my favorite time of year! Please enjoy a few of my favorite post from Halloween ’09! Classic projects that I am excited to share with my new readers! Click the photos to be taken to their original full length tutorials!

More new and exciting Halloween Projects BY ME to come!

Severed fingers! Nothing cooler then a fake finger to freak someone out with! These were so much fun to make! My kids have already started begging me to make these again!

“Something to sink your teeth into!” This is a yummy treat, Raspberry Bars, packaged in a fun Halloween gift box! Perfect gift idea for teachers and neighbors!

Paper Fall leaves and fabric scraps make for the perfect Fall garland!



These black bleeding candles are simple and easy! They add the perfect spooky touch to any mantel! They are not for burning but for decor!

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Denver love affair Part 2: Thrifting! Yes…well worth a trip just to buy others people crap!

It’s no secret I have a special place in my heart for Thrift Stores! It’s kind of sort of a weekly adventure. Hey…it goes with the job title! As a creative gal on the hunt for trash to treasure finds and other inspiring things I’ve grown accustom to thrifting! I know exactly how to tackle my favorite Thrift Stores! I do the same exact loop. Starting in the furniture section first, then the yard, Knick knacks, books, shoes, and cloths! It’s a lovely routine I must say! Some times I score loads and other times I just get to stretch my legs!

My sister in law, Karrilynn, has been tempting me for years to come to Denver! She talked of thrifting like no other! There was actually a thrifting season in Denver and I finally made plans to catch the tail end of it!

Holy Mecca of all thing thrift worthy!

We had our two days mapped out in a loop. Hitting three stores on day one and a handful more on day two! We ditched the kids and hit the streets like professional shoppers on a mission!

These stores were incredible! A few known for selling new, unused clothing from stores like Gap, Banana Republic, Ann Taylor, American Eagle and more and most of the clothing still had tags on them! Most of the shoes were all new and in perfect condition many still with Nordstrom tags still on them! New Toys, Dishes, and brand name gently used items had my eyes bugging out of my head!

Leadpad Learning systems for $2! GAP jacket for $6! I was in Heaven!!!!!



Brand new Hush Puppies and Nine West Shoes for $10! I bought two new pair of Crocks for $3 each and a pair of new Kenneth Cole Shoes for $4!

This was our cart after two hours of thrifting joy! It was hilarious! When you thrift your mind switched gears… If you were in Banana Republic and you found a Jacket for $8 you’d never let it go right? But our minds were in cheap mode and it was so funny to hear us talk ourselves out of a great $8 find becasue everything else was so cheap! Man I loved that!

So once again Denver knew how to draw me in! First with amazing food and secondly with Thrift stores that now grace my dreams and beg me to come back!

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Stenciled Book Cover: Creating a stencil from scratch!

Stencils can be super expensive and they often come in sizes that are a some times too small or just barely too big! When I got my Silhouette cutting machine last month I was wondering if I would be able to make my own custom Stencils! And the answer is YES!!!!!

If you go to the Stencil section of most craft stores you can find sheets of Mylar, the plastic material that stencils are made from. A small 12 x 12 sheet is only $1.99. I cut mine to the 8.5″ with to fit my machine and was then ready to create!

I picked out the shape that I wanted to experiment with and was able to make it the exact size I wanted!

I used the Pink cap that is used for cutting through the thickest material and pressed cut!

I did have to push out the design but it still had clean and crisp edging making my stencil perfectly ready to use!

Next I gathered my paint, book, stencil and paintbrush…

I held my stencil in place and painted a single layer of paint on my book cover.



I love how it adds just a tiny little detail! I can’t wait to get busy making more and more stencils! There are thousands of designs I can upload from the Silhouette collection on line! The trick is using a design that is solid and will punch out in one piece! This entire project took me like 10 minutes start to finish! I love this new toy of mine!

HINT HINT HINT!!!! I’m pretty sure you won’t want to miss tomorrows BIG giveaway! I’m just sayin!

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Denver love affair Part 1: D Bar….will you marry me?


There’s nothing like amazing food to put a place on the map and in this case Denver ought to send D Bar a nice thank you note for gettin’ the job done and putting me into a food coma!

D Bar
1475 E. 17th St. Denver, CO

Memorize this address becasue if you ever get to Denver add it to your list and thank me later!

I recently flew to Colorado for a weekend of Sister in law madness, thrifting and food! Let’s just say I wasn’t disappointing in any department!

Today I’ll reminisce about my inappropriate love affair with a Panini and bowl of French fries! First let me set the stage! My Sister in Law, Karrilynn, calls me a few days before our adventures and tells me she found the perfect restaurant we MUST visit! Being the foodie that I am I was all on board! Who wouldn’t love a restaurant that has these 3 major highlights…

  1. Serves only Appetizers!
  2. AND Desserts!
  3. And is owned and operated by Food Networks own Keegan Gerhard of Food Challenge!

First things first! The menu is the only bad thing about this place (wink wink!)! It’s next to impossible to narrow in on what you want to devourer so I suggest going with friends, ordering a ton of stuff and sharing! There are that many tempting choices!

We started off with:

the monika
roasted asparagus ∙ prosciutto ∙ fontina ∙ small arugula salad

and the

b.a.c.t.
applewood bacon ∙ avocado ∙ white cheddar ∙ tomato ∙ small salad

Both Paninis were out of this world! It was a toss up on which one we liked the best! The salad was the perfect partner in crime with its light and flavorful vinaigrette!

WARNING!!!!!

Our next indulgent will tempt you to lick your monitor so resist with all your might!

Meet Crue Fries. I’m convinced theses bad boys should be added to the 7 Deadly Sins! They are heaven on earth and highly addictive!


garlic parm fries · mac sauce · melted cheddar jack · bacon · ranch · chives….I LOVE YOU! Honestly…could there be a better combo of goodness? I cross my heart and promise there isn’t!

The after math!

Dessert time was almost as euphoric as dinner! ( AGAIN…those fries!!!) D Bar is known for it’s heavenly plated desserts! We saw so many amazing dishes pass our table and it took all that I had in me not to dive across the patio and steal a donut hole or sneak a spoonful of Creme Brulee off a perfect strangers plate!! “Quick! Look over there!”

I’m a sucker for lime or lemon anything so this Lemon Tart had my name on it! Yes please! May I have another!


Karrilynn had to try the highly recommended Chocolate Cake and Milkshake! From the moment we took our first bite we knew exactly why it was a top seller! If your weakness is chocolate then I tell you what! This will for sure do you in! Is that little milkshake not the cutest thing ever!


The entire restaurant was beautiful! Classy and simple! Comfortable and inviting! We never wanted to leave!


And just our luckKeegan himself was on site making the whole experience all the more incredible!! When we first meet him we were blown away at how amazingly kind he was. He joined us at our table and indulged us in conversation! He recommended dished, talked about the menu he was working on and then invited us behind the line to see the kitchen, meet his beautiful wife, Lisa, and take a sneak peak at a Challenge Cake they are working on for a Toy Story 3 themed episode of Food Challenge!

Ummm yeah! Did you just hear all that! We got the V. I. P. treatment…or so I think ! I wouldn’t be surprised if Keegan is that nice to all his guests! Seriously he was amazing!

Hello there Toy Story crew! Nice to meet you!

So the moral of the story….

D Bar is a must when visiting Denver! If you pass through this beautiful state without stopping in it would be like visiting France and not seeing the Eiffel Tower or listening to your favorite Michael Jackson CD and not trying to do the moon walk! Do your stomach a favor and hit it hard! No holding back! Order three appetizers and 4 desserts! Trust me…you’ll love every bite!

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Lunch Time Love Notes

We’ve been loving our back on a schedule routine around here with kids back in school and life marching to a different beat! I have a first grader this year and that means ALL DAY school! She has lots to look forward to like riding the bus both ways, two recesses and eating lunch at school!

When I got my new toy, the Silhouette Cutter, in the mail a few weeks ago I knew exactly what I wanted to create first…

Lunch time LOVE NOTES!



Theses sweet little note cards make the perfect back drop for words of encouragement, I love you’s and “good luck on today’s spelling test!”

They were fun to create and with the help of this awesome new toy it was incredibly fast and open to endless possibilities!

After uploading and setting up my machine all I needed to do was pick my designs, place them where I wanted and push “cut!”



I loaded the fun card stock and watched these shapes come to life! I cut the flower and snowflake shape in half to get more of a design look then shape look! Next I was off to create my cards…



Ribbon, stacked scrapbook paper and gems finish it all off!


I wish you could have seen my daughters face when she got home from school! I got the biggest hug ever! She saved her special card and I could tell she adored her special acknowledgment that she found at lunch!

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