Terrorific Tuesday: Halloween cup labels

I don’t know about you guys, but I’m starting to really get pumped for fall, y’all. I love, love, love all things Halloween from decorations to party planning to Halloween food. I guess if you’ve been reading my blog, you already knew that!

Anyway, today, I wanted to present an idea that I came up with a couple of years ago for a Halloween Bridal Shower. Now I realize that it’s a bit early to have a Halloween party, but it is never too early to start planning and getting ideas and plans in order so you are ready for the big event!!! For this project, I wanted to have fun cup labels (they can also double as name badges if you’d rather do that) for the guests to get them talking and mingling. It turned out to be a hit and everyone had fun picking out their very own label. Here’s a quick photo I shot of the ones from that party (not my best photo ever, but it shows the basic idea)…

coaster and personalized cup

The ones I made for that party were done on the fly, but I decided to offer you, my swell blog readers, some cool designed ones that I made up this evening in Quark. Click on the picture to be directed to my flickr stream and to download it at it’s biggest size for best resolution. Then print it out on your home printer and cut. It’s easy as pumpkin pie!

 halloween name tags-cup markers

halloween name tags - cup markers 2

I wanted them to reflect classic Halloween characters and movie horror classic icons. I think they are fun!

One of the other major reasons I’m getting psyched about Halloween is that this arrived today at the office:

halloween bhg mag

I even noticed our products being used in a photo article about having a kid’s halloween craft party (I designed the label on the Foam Paint bottle):

decoart foam paint

Whee! I also wanted to share today a few of my favorite Halloween site discoveries for you to check out…

This Christmas Traditions site is the most fabulous site if you love vintage Halloween decorations! It will make your mouth water!

My friend Lorilyn directed me to this fabulous site called Fancy Flours. There are so many ideas for making funky Halloween sweets and treats! Check it out!

Over at DecoArt, we are gearing up for a great season of crafting with great projects like these (click on the title above the photo to go to the project page)…

Bone Appetit Tray
Bone Appetit Tray

Celebrate Halloween Frame using Laurie Speltz’s Instant ImagesCelebrate Halloween Frame

Egg-Shaped Mummy
egg-shaped mummy

I’ll try to feature atleast one project each week now until Halloween from the DecoArt site on here. The DecoArt designers are the best and do such a great job coming up with innovative ideas!

Until next time Swellions!


All content/photos of cup labels copyright, © Alexa L. Westerfield, 2008

?#@*%! Bleepin’ Bleach Bag

bleepity bleep bleach bag

Grocery stores have their annoyances. Whether it be that slow-paced old woman in the frozen foods section or the unpleasant clerk who clearly doesn’t believe that the customer is always right, a shopping trip can strain your last nerve. So, the solution? Create this bag that says exactly what you are thinking, without saying anything at all. It’s a quick and uncomplicated project that you can whip up in an evening. Here’s how…

– Recyclable cloth bag (I got mine from www.reusablebags.com)
– Clear contact paper – 12″w x 8.5″h
– Black dimensional fabric paint (I used SoSoft dimensional writer)
– Bleach
– Exacto
– Scissors
– Freehand pattern (or pattern printed from the internet, see link below)
– Ruler
– Pencil, permanent pen
– Tracing paper
– Spray bottle
– small bowl
– Foam brush
– Self-healing cutting mat
– trash bag or cardboard


1. Draw out your design or click on the picture below for a free pattern to print off and create one like mine. If you are using your own pattern, don’t make it too complicated, as this will not transfer well during bleaching process.

2. Measure and cut out contact paper sheet. Seperate sticky part of contact paper sheet from backing. Slide in paper pattern.

3. Using Exacto,on self-healing cutting mat, cut out bubble design on contact paper.
cutting out

4. Peel off contact paper backing and place contact sheet sticky side down in center of bag. Press firmly into place.

5. Place cardboard or trash bag inside of bag to protect from bleaching through bag

6. Dip brush in small bowl of bleach. Dab inside bubble design sparingly, especially around outer areas, to prevent seepage. You can also just sparingly spray inside bubble using spray bottle, if you prefer.
bleach fill in, spray

7. Using spray bottle a couple of feet above project, mist all over front of bag and handles. Let dry.

8. Peel back contact paper to reveal finished bleached design.

9. Using pencil, trace and transfer explatives from printout into center of bubble design.

10. Outline bubble design and letters using SoSoft Dimensional Writers. Let dry.
fabric paint

Special thanks to my friend,Retta, who provided me with the materials and idea to get this project rollin’! I think it turned out fun and is a great way to make a bag a lot less blah, and a lot more ?#@*%! cool!

Also, here’s an alternative idea: My friend Chris, made a sumo wrestler shirt (he placed it on the side of the shirt). At first, it was so intricate and seeped so much that it looked like a blob, but Retta saved the day by going over the stencil again with SoSoft fabric paint (not the dimensional kind I used). It made for an interesting effect…

sumo image

Have a totally, ?#@*%! awesome day , Swellions!


All content/photos copyright, © Alexa L. Westerfield, 2008

not too pure to be pinky and other fun news

not too pure to be pinky mini lunchbox

I made this last night for my friend Kristy who is moving away. Kristy is one of the most genuine, fun, laugh out loud girls I know and I wish her luck as she makes her way in the big state of Louisiana! Her name on flickr was Pinky, so hence the nickname. She is also called “Posey” as well. Hmmmm, I bet you can’t tell it by that pic (my friend Chris took it by the way.

So, got my project on Craft Magazine’s blog. It’s my first time to be featured! Hopefully it won’t be my last 🙂 Been trying to get some exposure online and in some mags as of late. Not having as much success with the mags, but I’m going to keep trying. The editors must be overworked, on deadline, or short-staffed, cause most times when I send a submission in, I hear absolutely nothing back. I guess I expect that with the scrapbooking mags (they even tell you a lot that they may not contact you about your submission), but I guess I thought I would have better contact with the smaller mags. There’s still lots of time, so no worries.

So I’ve been thinking about a redesign as of late for my web site. I really need to revamp it and make it more current. I like the look of this one, but I did it all in html and I have no clue how to design any other way, and that is a problem. I need to read up, consult with a friend on some ideas, and layout some general content and a ladder for how I want it to flow. If you’ve never created a web site, you really have to think of all of this stuff before you begin or it is a nightmare to go back and fix. Everything on your web site is an extension onto something else and you have to not only concern yourself with the design, but also with the navigation and flow of the whole entire site. I think I have a good eye for layout, but as far as executing it, that’s a whole other story. I think for the content, I’d like to incorporate more of my sites, my blog, my photos, and my crafts, rather than it strictly being a graphic design site. I think I’ve evolved a lot in the 3 years or so since I designed it and I’d like it reflect my growth and knowledge. I still like the overall concept (me as different roles). I think just needs to be expanded upon or tweaked. So stay tuned.

And finally, here is the packaging I have spent the past 8 months of my life art directing, laying out, photographing (the whole shebang)…it’s for Laurie Speltz’s Instant Images. It’s a fun, new painting program that we are offering at my company, DecoArt. By the way, it is available now at Hobby Lobby. For more info on the line, check it out here.

i designed this packaging

OK, off to bed. Until tomorrow, Swellions.


All content/photos copyright, © Alexa L. Westerfield, 2008

I wear my heart on my hand

Hey guys! Just wanted to share my pottery creation I showed you a few days ago unpainted…

I wear my heart on my hand

I like the way it turned out. I think I’m going to use it as shows and stuff. I just might have to velco it down to something though. I think it could break pretty easily, if not.

Photo Box Purse

My latest project…



I did this over the past 3 nights. This is a photo/digi design purse I did for Carey (she doesn’t read my blog -or- atleast I hope she doesn’t get a wild hair and decide to peruse it this week before I see her – but I highly doubt she will).

Anyway, I designed the images (her cats, Puzzle and Waffle) in Photoshop. I had this great distressed sign image that I incorporated into the images of the cats. I wanted the images to be grungy and kinda gritty looking- but colorful. If you can’t tell, Waffle (the yellow cat) is laying in a sink and quite content. Anyway, I took the wooden purse apart and painted it all with Decoart paints and a stain. I then adhered my images (that were printed on a Laserjet color printer – this is key so that they don’t smear or get blurry…inkjet images do this when coated). I then taped off the sides and mixed up Envirotex Lite (my new favorite craft medium) and poured it on top. I let the Envirotex lite cure for about 48 hours, then I pulled the tape off (drips pop right off the tape). I sanded the sides, inked them, then added another copper stain to the sides (it is reddish/coppery looking in nature with distressed qualities). I then created the beaded handle using heavy duty wire and random beads. This is the only part of the process I’m a bit concerned about. The purse came with a bamboo handle, but in an attempt to unscrew it from the box, I accidentally stripped the hole, so I couldn’t put the original handle back in. So, I have wire in place. I tried to jam it in there good and tied where it won’t pop out and I tried to even super glue and glue gun it in place, so hopefully Carey won’t be walking along and suddenly the handle pop off. I’ve got my fingers crossed.

This is my first attempt at using the Envirotex Lite and making a custom handle, so I def. have some things I learned, but overall, I think it turned out cute. Next time, though, I will leave the handle on so I don’t have to worry about it.

If any of you guys are interested in a purse like this, I will make a one-sided purse for $40 and a two-sided purse for $50. I think this would be a neat idea for a vintage photo or childhood photo. I would like to do one of me over the years in different stages of my life. I think that would be a conversation piece. Everything…design/manipulation, construction will be included, so think about it…Mother’s Day is right around the corner and I honestly think it is so customized that someone will just ooh and ahh over it.