Thursday, November 19, 2015

Blessed Creation

I was having fun with my Ken Oliver Colorburst lemon yellow, Alizarin Crimson and orange, testing the puffing method. I started with watercolor paper, wet it, then puffed, I like how it made both swirls and spots - kind of like a blustery fall day. I respritzed a couple of places to get more blending, but it was a pretty quick card, other than drying time.

The tree itself is that fun "naked" stamp from Judith, that you can dress any way you like. Looking at it again today, I am feeling a Charlie Brown Christmas version in its future! I stamped it in Tim Holtz vintage ink, allowing a bit of brown into my fall mix.  The sentiment from Hero Arts Animal Blessings stamp set was put onto a piece of "kraft" paper from a recycled shopping bag
 -- enviro-crafty Mom at work! I love it when things can serve multiple purposes and not get wasted, and can keep the earth cleaner too.

I'm participating in the Classy Cards 'n Such Challenge #111 "Thankful"

Wednesday, November 18, 2015

Richly Blessed

Thanksgiving is just around the corner, and while it's not my favorite holiday -- it allows for some of my favorite cards. I love the idea of being grateful. I personally keep a gratefulness journal to cheer me in sad times, and to even prevent them by forcing me to focus on the positive. Do you? Trust me, it's a great exercise.

At any rate, this card actually started at a MOPs crafting event where I found and cut to size this gorgeous orange paper. It isn't a color I use often - more a beach kind of girl - but I thought it was so pretty. Now I have found its use! I layered it behind a geometric die from Ellentina to create a simple yet elegant background. I stamped my Reverse Confetti Pumpkin Patch with Stampin' Up chocolate chip ink & used the matching dies to cut out the parts. I popped this up on a panel to bring in my last fall color, and tied it all together with green Queen& Co. dotties. 

This is part of the Classy Cards 'n Such Challenge #111 "Thankful"

A Swimmingly Good Birthday

I love oceans and the beach -- that's "my" place. And especially this time of year... so I'm bringing it back with a birthday card for a friend...

The card base was in a nice ocean color, which I embossed with Lifestyle Crafts swirly embossing folder to suggest waves. I then added a Memory Box Oceana corner die.  The turtle and sentiments were stamped in Versafine deep lagoon ink from a Sweet N' Sassy set "happy ocean friends" then colored with Sakura gelly roll pens. I cut them out using Die-namics fishtail flags. I used my pens to add details to the shells on my corner die, and used Stickles to add eyes with dimension. A few water drop embellishments and I was done...

This week I am playing in the SNSS 8th Birthday Party contest.

Saturday, November 7, 2015

Turkey in the Straw

The inspiration for the whole card was actually the “straw” – a textured paper I picked up at a scrapbooking expo back in the summer with Thanksgiving in mind. I love the natural look it gives the card. It also is a bit shimmery, which shows not at all in a photo. The card was quite simple actually. I die cut the little IO pumpkins from paper I sponged with a mix of Tim Holtz distress inks. Some were popped up with Joy! Foam pads for depth, while others where glued tight to help hold on my straw. The sentiment was a die from Paper Smooches, and the turkey is just a kids’ sticker made of felt. Again, I liked how it added to the natural fiber texture of the card. The red panel is a much deeper more interesting hue than it looks with the flash photo, and the folder is a nice fallish chocolate.

I’m playing in the CCNS Challenge #109 Gobble Gobble this week.

Sunday, October 25, 2015

Spirit of Peace

This card was all about experimenting with texture and shine for me. I started with a snowflake embossing folder, which I highlighted with several snowflakes punched and then colored. On one, i used my new snow marker, and heated it for the puffy effect. On another I used a clear Sakura sparkle gel pen, and on another: wink of Stella clear.  I also added a little more bling with Stickles star dust & ice blue. Finally, I white embossed my Odbd "Snowflake Sentiments" stamp. This is part of the ODBD Inspiration Challenge ODBDSLC259.

Tuesday, October 20, 2015


Y'All will never believe this, but I finally made a good one. Sweet Beverly at CCNS said so! So here you have it:
Was awarded to my Harvest Blessings card.

Thursday, October 15, 2015

Harvest Blessings

This is my third card this week for the  CCNS Challenge - #106 Colors of Fall -I used some of my "French" dies -- love that wheat -- to signify fall, harvest, and thanksgiving.

I started with a wheat stamp from Hero Arts, which I stamped repeatedly between inkings (Versafine brown) to get different shades. After giving it a bit of time to truly set, I spritzed my page with water and added a little Color burst lemon yellow to evoke the golden hues of harvest time. While that was drying, I cut my panel from MFT Blueprints 12, which is stitched at the top. I love that little detail. I added my sentiment from the Stampin Up Trust God set using Versamark and white embossing powder. I adhered the layers with Scor-Tape, as the watercolor layer in the middle was warped.

Next, I cut out my IO wheat die from paper I had colored with Holtz distress inks, and adhered it with a combo of glue (stems) and Joy! extra small foam pads (wheat fronds). Last, I added some bling with copper Stickles. Hope y'all like it!

Wednesday, October 14, 2015

Fall Birthday Wishes

This week for the  CCNS Challenge - #106 Colors of Fall - I went with a second card as well. My college roommate and one of my best friends is an October kind of girl, so I am always on the lookout for the perfect card for her. If only I had an owl and an idea how to work it in -- this would have been final in my eyes. All the same, I like how it came out. 

The stamps are from Stampin' Up, which I stamped (lightly in the case of the wreath) with chocolate ink before coloring with my markers. The papers (some from the Authentique paper pack) I trimmed and tore to make strips. I embossed one of those strips, plus a punched circle, in a burlap-feeling pattern. After adding the little bow paperclip to my wreath, I popped the whole thing up with Joy! foam pads.

Tuesday, October 13, 2015

Floral Fall Gratitude

This week for the  CCNS Challenge - #106 Colors of Fall - I went with another clean and simple design -- my personal preference. Of course it ended up a thank you -- as the mom of a young family, I find myself with a lot to be thankful for, and a whole team of people I need to thank early and often from Team Mom!

I started with a chocolate card base, then used Tim Holtz distress inks to make a fall oranges and golds panel. I ran that through with a Spellbinders floral background die. Next, I popped up (with Joy! foam pads) an embossed panel with flourishes that seemed to tie my floral backer and swirly sentiment together, plus add depth and visual interest. Finally, I added some orange bling (texture, pattern, color, shine isn't just "What to Wear!)... and I was done.

The inside seemed a little plain, so I die cut a flower out of it and added a tiny bit more bling...

Thursday, October 8, 2015

Blooming Poinsettias

This week I'm playing in CCNS Challenge #105 Holly Days. I've been making all kinds of different Christmas cards already, so I was excited for a new idea. Last year I made the same card over and over for everyone-- and that lost ALL the fun of crafting, so this year I'm doing it differently. I just hope I don't run out of ideas in only one year!

For this CAS card, I started with some fun red and green patterned papers, used the Blooming Poinsettia die by Poppy Stamps, plus some leaves from the "Layered Poinsettia." I used Joy! foam squares to pop them up, then added my sentiment inside. Quick and simple.

Friday, September 11, 2015

Comfort from Friends

Awhile back I bought this poppy die from Memory box, and I have had far too many opportunities to use it already. (And please pray for my friends Rick and Bill, who are fighting hard themselves.)  That said, I pulled this card together pretty quickly I thought. The poppies were cut from paper I had sponged in a mix of brown and red Tim Holtz distress inks. To create visual interest and tie my colors together, I adhered these to a strip of pretty striped paper, which in turn was glued to an embossed chocolate layer over my white folder. The sentiment and chocolate ink were both from Stampin' Up!, which I die cut from  our daily bread designs ODBD lacy squares. Then I distressed the edges with tea dye and popped it up using small Joy! foam pads. Last, I added a few clear dewdrops.

This week I'm competing in:
ODBDSLC253 Color Challenge
Simon Says Wednesday Stamptember Challenge
Simon Says Monday Stamp and Punch/Die Cut Challenge

Saturday, August 22, 2015

Merci Dogwood

This week, I'm competing in the CCNS Challenge #98, a color challenge. For my last attempt, I used all 5 colors, which was harder than I thought it would be, looking at the inspiration photo, which went so easily together. Turns out, it is very hard to get patterned papers to go together when they are not part of a set. I'm beginning to see more of the logic of those "expensive" sets! I pulled out my MFT blueprints-13 set to cut the stitched rectangle panel and the top layer of the tag. (The two backers for the tag were just fussy cut.) On the tag, I had stamped my Hero Arts dogwood in Stampin' Up Strawberry Slush ink then sponged around it with Jim Holtz mowed lawn and bundled sage. The French thanks is a Memory box sentiment I die cut. On the panel itself, I started with washi tape in all five colors. The remainder of the white panel was background stamped with flowers by Judith in the same strawberry ink. I adhered it all to a green folder, and there you have it.

Wednesday, August 19, 2015

Dandelion Joy

All three of my kids love dandelions, racing each other to find the best bouquet for mommy, and presenting their spoils to me as if they are the best thing in the world. I tried to capture that joy with my camera and my baby cakes. If you look closely, you can see she's surrounded by dandelions and has a full bucket.

When I saw this Quietfire Design stamped sentiment in a friend's collection, I could not resist turning the photo into a card. I stamped it with Jim Holtz mustard seed ink and distressed it with squeezed lemonade. I popped it up on a fishtail banner with Joy! foam pads.

I thought it would make a cute scene as if viewed from inside, so I used a Poppy stamps Grand Madison window over a chain link fence embossed panel in green. I then used punches from my stash to make the flowers and branches from some patterned yellow and green papers. The flowers were finished with either small pearls or orange "rock candy" embellishments.

This week, I'm competing in the CCNS Challenge #98, a color challenge, and the Citrus with a Twist challenge at Simon Says Monday (lemon and lime ahoy!).

Monday, August 17, 2015

Cerulean birthday

I've managed to squeeze in a few minutes here and there for my catharsis (creative time), but since I don't have much time with the kiddos home, I needed to focus on the cards I need -- birthday and thanks! I figure anyone looking at my little blog is beginning to notice this pattern. I look at those beautiful, ornate "hello" or "just thinking" cards out there with time envy -- who has time to write one of those to a friend?! Perhaps in my next stage of life... Instead, here is a CAS birthday card I came up with.

It started when I wanted to play with my new "Birthday" die set from Memory Box. What came next was one of my many lessons in unforeseen consequences as I start out on this card-making hobby! Surprise one: the letters all came out separately (did I mention I'm new?), which gave me a small start after I cut them. I overcame that with some grid paper and a piece of washi tape to help me line them up.  Surprise two: the set had no "happy." The only such stamp I had was a block print that did not go very well with the blocked birthday. SO now I had to stop production and go find a scripty "happy." (Little B by the way)...

Phew. All that and all I have is my sentiment. From here it got back to being CAS for me! I used My Favorite Things Blueprints 13 to cut the stitched rectangle panel, then used an Impression Obsession cloud die cut to mask clouds on with Tim Holtz tumbled glass distress ink. I used other such inks to sponge small sections from which I punched the balloons then added the twine. I chose the balloon colors to go with a the Citrus with a Twist challenge at Simon Says Monday (think lime, pink grapefruit and lemon). The green folder seemed to set the panel off the best, and then I was at last done, on what looked like and should have been a very fast card. Lessons learned! ;-)

This week, I'm competing in the CCNS Challenge #98, a color challenge, and I hope you join me!

Friday, August 14, 2015

Hoppy Birthday

This week at Classy Cards N Such there's a very cute challenge photo (CCNS Challenge #97). My second take is a bit more involved than the first:

As I  mentioned, my kids are all about bunnies since we saw them at a local lavender festival in the spring of 2014. So I borrowed a little bit of that farm vibe with the Poppy Stamps mini garden cart, which I made from a finger-painted blue I stole from my baby girl, sponged brown for the handle, and shiny black from a stamp insert for the bands and wheel. That great blue color also drove the folder I used.

This time I embossed the bricks on a white background and added more layers of Impression Obsession (IO) grasses, some popped up with Joy! foam pads, so my IO bunnies could hop in and out. The bunnies are watercolored (one) or dry brushed onto bumpy watercolor paper (two). The leaping one is also popped up to add to his motion. I tried to recreate the ivy feel from the inspiration photo with a bunch of overlapping Penny Black leaflets then some sponging with Tim Holtz distress inks. Finally, I added my sentiment (thank goodness the clear stamp and brick pattern helped me get it straight -- I always worry about stamping directly onto the card after I am so invested...

I'm also playing in the Simon Says Monday Homegrown Summer Challenge.

Thursday, August 13, 2015

Bunny Thanks

This week at Classy Cards N Such there's a very cute challenge photo (CCNS Challenge #97). My kids have been petitioning for a bunny, and truth be told, I always wanted one as a kid, but I am resisting as the overwhelmed keeper of a house, three kids, a hubby and a dog! This week's photo is NOT helping!

So my first take is truly a clean and simple version:
I embossed bricks on a grey background. Then I started with my Impression Obsession (IO) swirly tree, added an IO bunny and some IO grass, then a sentiment from Little B. I liked how the white bunny popped, so I chose him in favor of the grey, brown and black ones I had water-colored as I experimented. (You'll see them later.) I am a very visual creator, so i am never positive which direction a card will take.

Saturday, August 1, 2015

Merci Tulip

My 3rd and final take on the CCNS #95 Colors and Patterns Challenge (what can I say? This one gave me a lot to think about...) combined both the colors and the patterns.

I had three green and peach patterned papers that I really liked but would never have combined until I saw the challenge photo. To this basis, I added a white lattice die cut overlay for visual interest and a Poppy Stamps tulip that I cut twice: once from Tim Holtz distress inked peach paper, and once from green distressed paper, which I obviously layered. I used a lighter green Tim Holtz sponged paper as the background for my sentiment, cut it with a Lawn Fawn stitched oval, and added my little "merci" die cut. I'm shocked how different these three cards turned out, from simple to very ornate (for me)!

Fall Blessings

My second thought for the CCNS #95 Colors and Patterns Challenge was to use the color inspiration in a fall theme, rather than the quilting patterns. I had just gotten a new background die -- Spellbinders Leaves A Fallin' -- at my very first scrap-booking expo last month, and I was itching to use it. First, I used a LOT of different Tim Holtz distress inks to make a fall ombre pattern, from which I cut the leaves overlay. I wanted the colors to pop, so I went with the chocolate background. My sentiment is from Stampin' Up, and was stamped using Versafine ink onto another background I had sponged with a mix of Tim Holtz inks. One scallop punch, one circle punch and some brown satin ribbon stolen from a friend, et voila!

Challenge I'm playing in: Classy Cards N Such CCNS#95 Colors and Patterns.

Birthday Stack

I loved the quilted inspiration this week, so my first thought was to use my Gift Stack Cut Out die by Impression Obsession with a quilted set of designer papers. 

The sentiments were die cut from the Little B Handwritten set. Truly a CAS card!
Challenge I'm playing in: Classy Cards N Such CCNS#95 Colors and Patterns.

Friday, July 17, 2015

Berry Thankful

I told you this CCNS #93 Summer Picnic challenge had me inspired (I even have one more idea that I haven't had time to create yet. Of course it will feature another mason jar!)...

This card actually started with the strawberries. Maybe my kitchen set this one off. I have them around constantly in season.  Strawberries are one of the few healthy foods I can get all my kids -- big, little, and grown hubby -- to eat. If you knew my crew, you'd know what a miracle that is. At any rate, for my card, I cut out small hearts from designer papers, and made stems from pieces of my curly tree from Impression Obsession. I then filled a small Impression Obsession basket, made from brown card stock and stripes of sponged paper (Jim Holtz barn door, fired brick, picked raspberry, and spiced marmalade).

I needed a picnic blanket, so I used the Our Daily Bread Design "lacy squares" to cut out some checkered paper (always gingham-inspired for us southern girls!), then popped up my basket with small Joy! foam pads on top of the blanket. All of this I put on a background that reminded me of strawberries, cut with the MFT blueprints 13 stitched rectangle. I added a kraft banner, stamped with my sentiment and added one more little strawberry from the background paper to finish it off. I hope you like it...

Buzzy Thanks

When I saw the CCNS Summer Picnic Challenge #93, I had several ideas. Where to start? So what can I say? I'm a southern, mason jar kind of girl…

I made my background layer with a gingham stamp from Stampin' Up and Tim Holtz barn door distress ink, then die cut it with a stitched rectangle and attached it to a kraft base. I added a mason jar tag that I stamped with a set from Technique Tuesday, and added a die cut "thanks" from paper I had sponged with a mix of distress inks. The tiny bees on the jar were a Stamp by Judith, and the larger bees were part of the Technique Tuesday stamp set, which I stamped, colored with a yellow glitter pen and fussy cut, then popped up with small joy foam pads to give them flight.

Saturday, July 11, 2015

Mothers Always Hold Our Hearts

Mothers Always Hold Our Hearts

My mother would have just enjoyed her birthday, but she has been gone ten years now. I find that hard to believe, but I have been blessed with an angel of a MIL, so I am able to still enjoy spoiling someone for being a great Mom and Grandma.

The colors from the inspiration (ODBDSLC245 Challenge) were perfect -- she loves this color combo (though it is not at all me!)... I used dies from MFT Blueprints 12 and 13 to make the layers, plus squares from Spellbinders.  Despite not liking pink much, I loved the cheery nature of the cherry blossom paper from Graphic 45, and the subtle pink tones of the blossoms. I added some butterflies from my stash, which I adorned with my Viva Perlen Pen. Simple, but effective, I hope...

Saturday, May 30, 2015

Eagle Scout Daddy

While this is a very memorial day or July 4th type card, I actually am going for a father's day look for my beautiful, always prepared Eagle Scout of a man. But the riffs on the US flag made me grateful for all the men, and women, who serve and protect us every day. Mine makes sacrifices for his own family, and they make sacrifices for us all. I value both infinitely. In this time of life where I watch another mother figure move toward her heavenly home, I am keenly aware of life, death, and the importance of serving one another. Now on to the card...

The start to this card was actually the star panel, which was made using a Verve Christmas die that goes with a little nativity scene and which I recessed into a white panel from which I had cut other stars. I then used some red, white and blue papers from my stash to do a not quite literal flag, but the fun part was what came next.

The inspiration photo of Things 1, 2, and 3 was them on a fun ride at the beach, which I fussy cut then adhered to a panel cut with My Favorite Things (MFT) Fishtail banner (reminded me of stars and stripes bunting, no?) and sponged with Jim Holtz inks tumbled glass, faded jeans and salty ocean. The medallion background was also sponged thus. The result reminded me of Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, with them riding off to the sky in their little red car! The medallion and backer were die cut from MFT Blueprints-13 and the medallion sponged with pickled raspberry, barn door, fired brick and vintage photo. Both the banner and medallion were popped up with Joy! Foam pads for depth. This is the busiest card I have ever made, but I really enjoyed adding layer after layer.

I usually don't do much, or anything, with the insides of my cards, but this time I had the perfect stamp from prickly, which was stamped in Versafine Majestic blue ink. I used some leftover MFT Blueprints-13 stars from my sponged papers to frame it et voila!

I'm playing in the Classy Cards 'n Such Challenge #86.

Saturday, May 23, 2015

Trust in God

Trust in God

How many times has this been true for you? I know in my life, that oftentimes it is only after I really give something to God, and stop trying to tailor the response I want to hear, that I get a clear answer, a straight and obvious path.

For the ODBD239 Inspiration Challenge, All Things Bright and Beautiful, I loved the blue and black butterfly from the first picture and the vibrant green hues I saw in several of the collage photos. I took a slightly more impressionistic route. I played with my Tim Holtz distress inks until I got the juxtaposition I liked between vibrant spring greenery and a brooding sky to suggest tough times, but also hope, to go along with my ODBD sentiment, embossed in Stampin Up white powder. The panel was cut using my favorite MFT Blueprints 13 stitched rectangle and adhered to a black folder. The fussy-cut butterfly was stamped in Versamark and embossed with black detail powder. Then I colored it in with a mix of Sakura gel pens and brushed the whole thing with my Wink of Stella glitter wand. I popped her up with Joy! foam pads to suggest flight. I added the whimsical, and "uplifting" pearls and voila -- a simple card done.

Friday, May 8, 2015

Greatly Appeciate our Teachers

This week is teacher appreciation week, and in the life of my "special" kids, this year's teachers have been invaluable instruments in God's hands, unlocking minds, teaching not just academics but social skills and self-help, and truly loving all of the kids, on bad days and good. As a result, it is fitting that my most intricate, unaided, card came together so well (I think) in their honor...

I'm playing in the Simon Says Wednesday Challenge, Let's Get Sentimental (also fitting!) this week. For our teachers, I did a subtle riff of the apple theme, creating a garden scene with dies from several Impression Obsession sets. My tree was watercolored by the kids actually, then stolen fair and square by Mommy for crafting. The apples and basket rings I did myself from some scraps of papers I had sponged using Tim Holtz distress inks to get the four apple hues. I popped up the basket and two of the apples with Joy! foam pads for depth.  The ODBD sentiment was stamped with VersaMark and embossed with Stampin' Up White powder. I couldn't resist throwing in a subtle Christian message, my shy way of bearing witness, et voila!

I also tried a version with the colors inverted (see below), which I really liked with the sponged background in such a happy spring color, die cut with the stitched die from MFT Blueprints 13, but then at the last minute I made a crooked stamp and blew it -- happens to us all at some point I guess!

Hope you enjoy them.

Tuesday, April 28, 2015

Cloudy at Sea

Cloudy at Sea

The Cloud challenge (CCNS82) couldn't have come at a better time, as I had just purchased the nautical Impression Obsession Dies and some clouds, inspired by our April beach trip, but hadn't yet played with them. Here's what I came up with (sorry the picture is at such a rakish angle!):

Now that I have seen my friend's take on the same scene, I am decidedly less pleased with myself than I was when I created this... At any rate, the sky is sponged with salty ocean and tumbled glass over cloud masks, stamped with a sentiment from ODBD, and then I popped up clouds from both an Impression Obsessions set and a ODBD set. The ocean is made from torn strips of paper I had sponged with mostly peacock and salty ocean (lighter layer) or faded jeans, salty ocean and dusty concord (horizon layer). The island was torn from cappucino card stock over-sponged with tea dye. The lighthouse comes from the IO nautical set, which I punched from both black and white to get the striped. The lights were filled in with Stickles to give them texture and glow.

As a side note, while none of my designs has ever won, I found out this morning I did win a random drawing via one of my entries (April SHowers), so I'm taking that as a victory! Exciting!

I'm also playing in the scripture challenge at Our Daily Bread Designs.
Thanks for visiting!

Friday, April 24, 2015

April Showers

April Showers

This is my first ever entry into an Our Daily Bread Challenge (ODBDSLC235) -- finally got some of their great stuff in order to be able to play along (ok, this one I borrowed from a friend, but I have more, I promise!) ...

The background is sponged with a combo of Distress Inks in pistachio, pine and bundled sage to create a spring look, then die cut from my MFT Blueprint 13 stitched die. The ODBD sentiment was stamped in VersaMark and embossed using white powder. My tulips were cut from a Penny Black die, first in green, then from watercolor papers I had sponged in either Pickled Raspberry/Marmalade or Marmalade/Mustard Seed/Fired Brick and popped up with Joy! Foam pads. The smaller flowers are from a Martha Stewart hydrangea punch from designer papers and hand cut stems. I popped up the larger ones and shaped the tiny one, then added pink and green rhinestones.

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Cherry Thankfulness

Cherry Thankfulness

Today I am playing along for the first time at Classy Cards N Such (CCNS81) at the behest of a friend with lots more experience! Their concept this week was cherry or dogwood blossoms, and given the sight and fragrance of cherries all around right now here in DC, I took that path. My other inspiration was a color combo I saw while stuck watching the Masters Golf Tournament with my hubby (can you say bored if all I noticed was the juxtaposition of spring green, deep blue and hot pink in the azeleas/sky?!). Thus was born my concept.

For my background, I sponged a combination of distress inks (peacock, salty ocean, faded jeans, dusty concord, pistachio and pine). I cut the Penny Black Dancing Blooms cherry stem twice in chocolate for thickness, and once in paper I had sponged spiced marmalade/pickled raspberry to get my cherry blossoms. I added my Stampin Up sentiment in Versamark, and picked it because I thought the concept of giving a receiving so nicely fit the cherry blossom, since ours here are all a gift from Japan. Then I added blue, green and clear rhinestones (which I'm sorry to say photographed as all dark). I cut my panel using the MFT Blueprints 13 stitched border die and adhered it to a matching chocolate base I made from paper in the same family as my cherry stem. Voila! I hope you like it.

Other Challenge I am playing in: Simon Says Wednesday Challenge: Clean and Simple

Sunday, February 22, 2015

Monochrome Valentine

So when I saw this week's challenge at CASology, Monochrome, I knew one of my unused ideas from last week was just the right game to play, so I started experimenting. I must say, the monochrome makes it seem a bit "flat" to me, but...I enjoyed playing with my toys.

It was my first foray into Washi tape -- not as sticky or "thick" as I would like -- not impressed, but there are so many more patterns than ribbon from Michael's! I added baker's twine for a little more flair. I had originally used an embossed panel, but the tape just wouldn't stay stuck. I preferred that other look though.

For the sentiment, I stamped it at a friend's house (and thus don't know the collection), then die cut it with Spellbinders scalloped hearts at home. I sponged the edges with Tim Holtz distress ink Barn Door then popped it up with foam.

Sunday, February 15, 2015

Love Mobile

I did a lot of playing with this card: overlapping panels, a swirly embossing folder I don't normally use for texture, wordy designer paper on the topic of love, and stacked die cuts of the word "love." While you can't see it in the tiny photo, the word is stamped onto textured purple paper, which I then added shimmer to with a clear Sakura gel pen. I stamped the picture design with chalkboard lavender then clear embossed it while it was wet. I then used my markers to color in the hearts, and added some "shine" with a white gel marker. I thought it turned out a lot more interesting than many of my other Valentine's attempts. I hope you like it!

Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Words of Love

Words of Love

This is the latest, derived from the cute CAS(e) this Sketch challenge of the week. Thus, the layout has a simple bar down the left side, embellished with blue and white kitchen twine, and the design element and sentiment are in the lower left-hand corner.  I've been amazed at the fact that those layout sketches really do turn out well, no matter how basic my own design may be.

I've been really liking playing around with words (shocking for a writer, isn't it?!), so this card combines wordy designer papers, an embossing folder, and even a die cut.  I love it: words for texture, words for design, and words for meaning. A girl could get used to this. Throw in my favorite language (the panel is in French, bien sur) and color, and I kinda like it... I hope y'all do!

CAS(e) this Sketch #109

Tuesday, February 3, 2015

Welcome to the Neighborhood card

Welcome to the Neighborhood

For this card I obviously started with a layout from the challenge, but from there I was free to play. I had a new to me Stampin' Up set with all these cute little house and tree parts, but had previously had no idea about how I intended to use them. And suddenly I have a new neighbor moving in, so voila!

I learned a few lessons in lining up the parts (and for the record need to look up a video on how to use the Stampamajig, which was wholly ineffective in my hands!). And for the color scheme, I was trying to make a more masculine card as a mini-challenge to myself, since they all seem to end up a bit girly despite my tomboy self!

After stamping the card, I water-colored the sky and field elements using Tim Holtz (H is for Holtz! challenge) distress inks and water.  When that dried, I stamped the white clouds on, which I subsequently clear embossed. From there, I found the cute little Welcome sign and fussy cut it to simulate a street sign, then popped it up with foam.

I also added a meaningful sentiment to the inside and punched it out.

i hope my new neighbors like it, and that y'all do too!

Challenges I am competing in:

CAS(E) this Sketch #108

Simon Says Wednesday Challenge: Anything Goes
Simon Says Monday Challenge: H is for ...

Monday, February 2, 2015

CASology "Birthday" Challenge

Have Cake If You Wanna! 

I had a new birthday script die (Memory Box dies) that I wanted to play with, and a bestie with a pending birthday in March, when the CASology Birthday Challenge came up, so this seemed the time... 

I cut some sea green (reminds me of our past trips together to the shore) paper full of loving words from my Valentine's stash.  You, and she, will have to take my word for that -- I failed to see how thin the die was until I used it. Now the letters add interest, not meaning. Sad. Anyway, she's a pink kind of girl (I'm not), so I dove into my hot pink textured paper for both the panel and the cupcake punchout and added a ribbon with dark and light pink swirls to tone it down a bit. The cupcake is stamped in white ink then clear embossed. I also stamped part of another stamp to get the hot pink "it's your" for a font contrast.  Inside, I added my sentiment: Have Cake if you Wanna! to continue the theme from the front, and to play off my friend's well-known love of all things sugar.

I knew I enjoyed crafting and liked pretty stationery, but there has been a surprise in all this for me.  I'm really having fun in this brand new hobby tailoring my cards to things meaningful to the recipient or to our relationship. I've always liked snail mail, but thought I wasn't sentimental when I didn't like store-bought cards. Now I know it was just that the sentiment was wrong. Love to my friend!

Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Love Over and Beyond Card

For today's card, I was playing again with the Valentine's/heart theme. Of course, the season is upon us, but in addition, my Mom was a pediatric cardiologist, so hearts have always held a special place for me. I digress; back to my card...

I had die cut several different colors (textured violet, patterned lavender and plain red cardstock) and sizes of hearts at a friend's house (Our Daily Bread Design dies???), which looked like they would make nice balloons. I liked the metaphor of love taking us up, up, and away. I used a heart embossed panel to start, then popped the mini hearts up with foam squares and attached baker's twine and knotted them together to turn them into a balloon bouquet. I've really been enjoying my large word die, "Love." I cut it out of red foil for shimmer and interest, and stacked 4 layers to give it added dimension to match the balloons.

Challenge I'm playing: Simon Says Anything Goes

Monday, January 26, 2015

Honeybee Thanks

Honeybee Thanks

For this card, I was playing with my fun new hexagon shaped dies, punch, and embosser. Actually, I had borrowed a hexagon border die from a friend with an idea in mind, but as I played with the layout, that piece did not survive. Ironic that the inspiration didn't fit. Shows what I know! But I do know I love all things French country, and for me that includes bees, so here it is...

I tried something new on this card: I framed every element in black to add pop and definition.  I wanted to tie in a bit of the yellow from the bees and evoke a honeycomb without even more hexagons, so I added the polkadot panel. The layout was suggested by a new challenge I'm undertaking: CAS(e) this Sketch #107.

Sunday, January 25, 2015

Friendship is the Little Things Card

This time, I have tried to play along with a friend theme at CASology. I used a great new (to me) Penny Black tulip die to make green and pink polkadot cuts that I trimmed and glued together, a la my guru.  I added a matching pink dot ribbon and pink hued sunshine. For my sunshine to feed my friendship flowers, I stamped it then wet embossed it with clear powder to get shine and resist, then I sponged it with a mix of pink and yellow Tim Holtz distress inks and popped it up with foam. Then I embossed the panel to continue the dot theme. I like the fresh feel as I ponder yet another snow day here at home!

Thursday, January 22, 2015

CAS Moroccan Love Card


It's a day of firsts: my first solo card, my first blog, and my first ever online or contest entry.
I was inspired by the upcoming Valentine's Day, but wanted to avoid the typical red and pink
color schemes. Sadly, I learned the hard way that purples do not photograph well.

That aside, here's how I did it: First, I die cut the hearts using both Our Daily Bread Designs and and My Favorite Things heart dies borrowed from a friend. I used some textured and some designer scrapbook paper. I sponged several blue and purple inks together to add depth to my panel then adhered the hearts. I embossed my large panel with a Moroccan-inspired folder to add texture and interest. Finally, I die cut 4 copies of my "Love" from Little B "Handwritten" die set, stacked them, and voila! My first attempt without my training wheels (Thanks, D!).

Thanks for letting me play along with the CAS(e) this Sketch #106 challenge.