Saturday, December 29, 2012

Hogs & Kisses - Make It Monday #97

Whoa... this ended up more pink than I originally thought, even with adding the brown, but hey, spotted pigs?  Well, they just need to be pink, right? 

Check out all the videos of different techniques on the latest Make it Monday #97 A la Carte.  It's a great post to see the year in review of different technique videos shared in 2012.  I chose the technique Colored Kissing #57 for my square Hogs and Kisses card.  I used the solid hog image & sentiment from Papertrey Ink's On the Farm set and Stampin' Up's Dot, Dot, Dot background stamp for the spots on the pigs.  At least the pink I used helps me get into a Valentine mode, I think...  Happy crafting everyone!

Monday, December 24, 2012

Handmade Gifts are Best...

Okay, I'm biased on this subject, but I love making handmade gifts for birthdays and Christmas, so thought I'd share a photo of one of my favorite creations today.  This is a fun project for Valentines Day, too.

An unfinished wood frame was decorated by adding some scrapbook paper to the frame with decoupage.  I sanded the edges and just added a few details. I also handmade the paper flowers by crimping the paper then punching the shapes and curling the edges and adhering together.  I cannot find the original tutorial right now, but found this fun Pinterest page you may like to see to find a flower you may like to make. 

I typed the sentiment and printed it on vellum and layered it on a punched piece of coordinating paper.  My lace ribbon was my final touch that made it easy to safety pin my sentiment on the front.  I sent the frame with another sentiment just in case my friend wanted to change out the photo or thought the saying was too cheesy.  I packaged it securely in a TON of bubble wrap and I'm pleased to say it travelled overseas intact!

A very Merry Christmas to my friends in blogland.
Take care and happy crafting! 

Thursday, December 6, 2012

My Digital Studio - to the rescue!

Well, I messed around trying to come up with a cute custom Christmas photo card on all the sites that offer's time consuming trying to find a style you like that you can personalize to "look like you."  All the time I wasted trying to find just what I wanted was silly, since I have My Digital Studio software...duh!!! 

I cannot wait to see what the real card looks like when it arrives in the mail... I'll update this post with a photo so you can see & compare this digital image with the "real thing" that arrives professionally printed.  I'm anxious to see them.  I made a couple different styles, so it'll be like opening a gift to me!

Late night again... I really have a hard time sleeping during Christmas crafts and projects season.  Hope you are getting some shut eye (instead of reading this post late at night)!

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Snow Much Fun - Merry Monday Year in Review

It's this time of year that I wonder "why didn't I make more Christmas cards in July?"  Well, I'm not alone, there are a lot of crafters that create Christmas cards year 'round, or wish they did.  Many smart & talented folks follow and participate in the Merry Monday challenges.  I'm late to playing along with the group, but it's a start!

  This week's Merry Monday challenge lets you use any past sketches.  There are a lot of great sketches to choose from, and this is the one I selected for my Snow Much Fun card, with just a bit of a flip.

I used Stampin' Up set Snow Much Fun that was a GREAT buy during after Thanksgiving sales.  Rest of my products used are also SU!  I felt especially inspired using that snowflake punch as a layer behind my sentiment (I assume the star in the sketch was just a suggestion).  Expect to see that snowflake more often!

Enjoy & happy stamping!

Saturday, December 1, 2012

Crafting for a Good Cause...

Operation Write Home has a Valentine card drive going on right now.  My sister inspired me to get busy & send some - all she had to do was tell me she already sent her pack of cards to OWH, so I had to make some, too!  You can find more information about the card drive by clicking on the link I added on the right side of this blog.

It's always fun to play with some new toys, so I used my new Freckled Fawn Washi tape, Hearts and Clouds.  I bought the tape especially for Valentines day as it is perfect to use when "love is in the air"!!!

Heart & Cloud

The textured hearts I created using my Stampin' Up! heart punches, Scalloped Heart of Hearts die and Adorning Accents embossing folder.  The sentiment is from Paper Trey Ink and the baker's twine is from WeR Memory Keepers.

Thanks for looking today!  Have a wonderful weekend!

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Happy Thanksgiving!

Finally... I made a one layer card. Whew.  It's harder than you think.  I did add the twine on the side, but that doesn't count as a layer, right?  I used Stampin' Up sets French Foliage and retired Handpenned Holidays and grunged the sides with some Soft Suede Ink.

Must share with you that I'm grateful I have this fun hobby to share with my friends and family...  Spending time at home is a rare treat, too...I am also very grateful we have such a nice, quiet place to call home. 

Hope everyone enjoys a lovely Thanksgiving!

Saturday, November 17, 2012

Pocket Full of Cheer - Make It Monday #91

This week's Make It Monday challenge was to create a faux pocket card.   I was up late in a creative sleepless mood, so the challenge helped give my sleepless night some focus.  I didn't have foam adhesive on hand (like in the video) so I used some skinny Scor-Tape type adhesive on the three sides of the pocket attached to the card.  That seems to work well, too.

A pocket card is a great design for Christmas.  Despite the late hour, I was alert enough to remember I have some neglected Nestabilities dies & used one to help me decoratively cut some scrap white cardstock into a nice tag (slip your piece of card stock in the die so you only cut the top and not the entire piece). I slipped the tag in the pocket so the recipient can re-use that feature on a package of their own if they liked. 

The Papertrey Ink stamp sets I used are Peaceful Pinecones (including the matching die) and Happiest of Holidays (great sentiments in that one).  Little heart is from Stampin' Up set Lovely Little Labels. Colors used are Dark Chocolate, Fine Linen (PTI) and Cherry Cobbler from Stampin' Up!.  Hope you get a chance to play this week.  Enjoy & happy stamping everyone!

Saturday, November 10, 2012

Wishing You Joy... Make It Monday #90

This week's Make It Monday challenge at Papertrey Ink was to showcase diecut letters.  I had these precut words from Stampin' Up! in my craft stash for some time.  It is so nice to use things that have been waiting to fulfill their craft destiny... 

 I followed the video pretty closely in my example, at least as far as using the word as the focal point and the smaller sentiments around the word. The images and sentiments are from the Peaceful Pinecones stamp. 

Card making confession time... 
Since I struggle with getting things straight, I created the little banners for the smaller sentiment words on the front of the card.  They cover up my crooked attempts from stamping directly on the paper... I just wasn't patient enough today to do otherwise.

The rest of my pine boughs and pinecones were stamped in Stampin' Up's Baja Breeze and Early Espresso inks using the Peaceful Pinecones set.  I popped up a couple of pinecones with dimensionals.  My mini stapler had some "issues" so I added a little twine bow to cover up some stapler boo boos... but isn't that what embellishments are for?

Hope you have a chance to play this weekend.  Happy stamping everyone!

Sunday, November 4, 2012

Pursuit of Happiness

Chin up, during election year... tough times and hard to bear some of the rancor that comes with the U.S. election cycle, but during times like these, this down to earth saying from the Stampin' Up! stamp set, "Pursuit of Happiness," makes me pause, take a deep breath, and remember the finer things in life.

Good luck to the election candidates!  May the winners live up to everyone's best expectations.
Take care everyone & have a great week!

Saturday, November 3, 2012

Window card - Make It Monday #89

This week's Make It Monday challenge was working with windows for floating images.  I think if you try this technique , you'll enjoy it, but it is hard to want to cover up the images or sentiments on the inside of the card... so as you can see, my little floating hearts barely cover any of my heart shaped window.  

A clear piece of acetate makes a perfectly clear window.  You can buy these as clear window sheets from several retailers, or use some stiff plastic packaging from something in your plastic recycle bin.

I used Papertrey Ink's Heart Prints Sentiments stamp set for my card, and other ribbon, cardstock and papers from Stampin' Up.

Happy crafting everyone!

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Happy Halloween!

Trick or Treat!

This seems to be the only time of year I pull out the mini milk carton die to use in my Big Shot. It's fun to make the little carton with a die cut window to show off these funny googly eyeball candies.  This is the only time of year I see these funny chocolate candies and I'm not sure what they taste like, but the packaging is hilarious, so I cannot resist buying some.  I tucked a few standard candies in the box, too, so if someone was too disturbed to eat the eyeballs, they can still have a treat.

I'm still trying to learn how to take a nice photo with my husband's loaner camera (thank you, honey, for trusting me with it!). Here's a close up of the grey box with a googly-eyed spider decorating the clip holding the box closed...

Hope you have a safe and fun Halloween.
Happy crafting to all my spooky, crafty friends!

Saturday, October 27, 2012

Just sit back & relax...

Ah, retirement envy... does anyone else suffer from this?  I have had a lot of opportunity to make retirement cards lately, so I guess that's what's given me the bug.  I'm not wishing my life away, but it will be nice to come to a point in my life when I'm ready to do what I want, when I want, craft the day away, and spend a lot of quality time at home...

Here's a close up of my Framelits "window" with the texture and patterned paper layered on top & bottom.  I added a Vintage Trinket button brad to the center of my "flower pillow."

I like the Cajun Craze and Soft Suede color combo (above) the best, but I also love combining brown and blue (in the card below, Soft Suede and Baja Breeze)...

Hope you have a great weekend.  Happy stamping!

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Christmas Swap

Yep, it's not even Halloween, and already there are Christmas images on the web and in the stores!  It gets earlier every year, and while some can complain, I won't... for me, nothing wrong with feeling a little Christmas spirit a little early this year.

I made this for a Christmas card swap a few weeks ago.  I love the sentiment and while you cannot tell from the photo, I stamped the sentiment in Versamark & heated it with Cherry Cobbler (red) embossing powder to give the sentiment an even more polished look (the stamp is from latest Stampin' Up! holiday catalog).  I only wish I had had enough of the green cardstock (I was low) to re-do my scallop edges as I couldn't get them lined up equally on each side, but then again, a handmade card lends itself to a little bit of asymmetry once in awhile, right? 

Enjoy & happy stamping!

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

So blue... (a sketch challenge should cheer me up!)

Yeah, I'm blue today... both my card and my mood...

Well, at least I can be distracted by this week's Freshly Made Sketch challenge #56.
Here's the sketch:

So, why am I blue?  Pretty sure I goofed up my digital camera last night, and still not sure if it's fixable... but I charged up the OLD camcorder that has a photo shooting option, so here ya go!  It's the best pic I can take for now...A CAS sketch was in need, too, so glad to find this one. 

I'm having some friends over to make some cards and sure enough, one person expressed interest in "funky trees" and "blue" as two choices for the style & vibe for what they were interested in making.  Lucky me, I have big supply of blue cardstock, and the retired Stampin' Up! Patterned Pines set seems to fit the bill for a non-traditional looking Christmas tree.  Plus I'm always on lookout for ways to use my leftover tinsel garland string - hooray!  Silver, white & blue & funky Christmas trees it is!

Happy stamping everyone!

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

How Now Brown Cow? Make It Monday #86

This week on Make It Monday, the focus is on including some stamping on the inside of a card.  I  hesitate adding an interior sentiment until I know who may be getting a card, but for a "ready on hand," all occasion birthday card, it's pretty easy to pick out a sentiment from Paper Trey Ink's Birthday Basics and it is fun to decorate the inside, especially when a plain, stark white interior is begging for some attention.  

I inked up my On the Farm set for my card above.  I love the casual country images in this set and they are fun to layer.  I used Stampin' Up! inks, Crumb Cake, Cherry Cobbler and Early Espresso on the card here. 

Here's a peek at the simple interior stamping I did to complete the card.The checkerboard pattern matches the small amount of checkerboard on the front, but I got to use the longer image on the inside...

Well, I am lucky to get a chance to post this as right after I took my card photos, my digital camera went on the fritz! EEK! Hate that... now of course my hubby (my Mr. Fix It) can only suggest I pull out the instruction manual myself to see what may be wrong... darn... boo... Wish me luck!

Enjoy! Happy Stamping everyone!

Saturday, October 6, 2012

World Card Making Day - It's a Polar Party!

Woo Hoo! World Card Making Day Operation Write Home blog hop

I thought a Polar Party was in order for this World Card Making Day, so I pulled out my Stampin' Up! set of the same name featuring this cute, gift bearing Polar Bear...

This will make a great winter birthday card, too (I just need to change the sentiment).  Off-center, "askew," or crooked layers make me feel so much better, as I don't have to worry too much about getting things "straight."  The design of my card loosely follows this OWH Bonus Sketch:

(find more OWH sketches by clicking here)

I love making cards for our heroes as it gives my obsessive card making hobby a real sense of purpose.  The chance I'm bringing a smile to the face of a loved one that receives one of the cards mailed home by one of our soldiers is a wonderful feeling. 

 Regardless if you're visiting from the hop, or just stopping by my site, you should be able to see the entire blog hop by clicking here to the main site, or on the OWH link here or at the top of this post.

Hope you have a chance to check out the blog hop and get a chance to create & send a few cards of your own to your local OWH shipper!  Happy crafting everyone!

Saturday, September 29, 2012

Reflected Statement - You've gotta try this technique!

So many crafty ideas and techniques to try this week, I'm not sure I'll get them all finished over the weekend along with the rest of my household chores, but I'll check one off this morning.  Here's a card I just finished showing off the fun & easy "Reflective Statement" technique shared this week at Make It Monday for Paper Trey Ink.  I've taken a close up so you can better see what this is referring to...

  Check out the video on the site for instructions on this technique.   It's really quite simple... stamp your phrase on your cardstock, then stamp it again (or in my case stamp just the word you want to highlight again) on a piece of clear acetate (a/k/a window sheet).  Then flip the acetate over lining it up directly under the other word and press it down to "stamp the word" below the phrase, creating a word reflection below...  Easy & fun!

I chose to stamp my reflected statement in a lighter color (PTI Aqua Mist) than the original dark blue ink (SU! Not Quite Navy), as I thought it made it look even more "other worldly" for a spacey effect to my Rocket Ship card.

The stamp set I used here is from Paper Trey Ink, Boy Basics "Out of this World."  I paper pieced a few silver elements on my rocket ship before I realized I could also add some silver accents with Stampin' Up's Platinum shimmer paint, but at least I remembered that for the top of the ship!

Well, gotta get movin' on... or else my chores will last to infinity and beyond!!!

Have to add a new photo of my craft buddy... He's been so happy playing with a "forgotten" squeaky toy today... Love to see the dog smile on his face!

Happy Weekend everyone!

Nuts! I forgot!

Oh my, this week I was a bit stressed... Got sick, then got distracted by a bunch of things & I FORGOT to mail a very important card!!!  Darn it!  Well, that at least inspired me to pull out this fun stamp set from Kitchen Sink Stamps.  The Autumn Squirrel and all the sayings are so cute!  Surely this will help grant me a little forgiveness...

The image from this set was "triple stamped."  There are layers of stamps that help create the image (in this case 3 layers).  The first layer is stamped in a light color, then the other layers are stamped in increasingly darker ink colors. Following the color recipes for most KSS sets is pretty easy, and it's also pretty easy to substitute for what you have on hand.  For my squirrel I used SU! River Rock, Soft Suede and Early Espresso inks.  Then I used similar cardstock colors for the rest of my card.  I used an SU! woodgrain stamp and embossing folder as well, and a little twine to embellish the tag & acorn.

Well, better get on my way to keeping on track with everything else that I need to do!
Enjoy your weekend everyone & happy stamping!

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Celebrate Today!

I know my fellow bloggers can appreciate the joy in knowing a project you posted gets a little recognition.  I'm so proud to be among the week's royalty court over at Freshly Made Sketches.  Thank you, Rita, for the compliment...I regard it very highly.

See more info for my card, Mainspring of Happiness, from my last post.

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Mainspring of Happiness FMS53

Ah, apparently it's "Use Your Scraps" day, and scraps are something I have no shortage of.  Why on earth should I just hoard my favorite patterned papers when if I truly like them, I should just use them and use them a lot??  Lucky for me, this week's challenge at Freshly Made Sketches is perfect for using my scrap papers.  Here's a look at the fun sketch for this week:

I again used my latest fav DSP, Orchard Harvest. I snipped and curled a few of the edges on the strips of paper and wanted to add a little texture, so added a few Argyle embossed thin strips of Rose Red cardstock.  Oh, yeah, the strip of More Mustard cardstock in the center was stamped with a woodgrain I did do a little stamping, other than the sentiment that is. 

Here's a little close up so maybe you can see the details better...

Hope you find time to do a little crafting today!  Enjoy and happy stamping!

Get Well Soon!

Well, I'm feeling under the weather, so what did I do?  I made MYSELF a get well card!  Silly, I know, but therapeutic nonetheless.  Reminds me that when I feel better I should make a few of these to have on hand... it will be flu season soon, if we're not already there, right?

Riley & Co also has a challenge going on, so my "Sick Riley" stamp came in handy combining my desire to feel better & post a challenge card.  This is a "scrapling" card, my card is only about 2.25" x 4" in size, using some Stampin' Up! Orchard Harvest DSP scraps.  Since I am "Copic-ally Challenged," my coloring skills are far from superior, I did the next best thing & paper pieced my Riley image.  That means I stamped my image several times on different papers, then hand cut the pieces and reassembled them to create the finished image. 

 I also stamped a woodgrain pattern on the footboard of the bed, and popped up Riley's congested head on a dimensional, maybe you can see that better on this close up...

Time to head back to bed & rest now, just like Riley's doing here...
Take care, friends & don't forget to get your flu shot!

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Birthday Elephant

Something about this circus elephant from Stampin' Up!'s set, You're Amazing, just makes me smile... I'm not sure why, I guess it's the hat...??

Anyway, in the card I made above, which I expect to use for a birthday card, although it could be used for any type of celebration, I also used some of the Festival of Prints DSP you can find in the SU! Holiday catalog.  Island Indigo and Raspberry Ripple are the main colors I used.  It think the colors seem so bright & cheerful.  A bit of Island Indigo bakers twine was fun to use, too.  

Holiday papers don't have to be used just for Christmas!  Gotta love that... Here's a peek at the papers and stamps included in the SU! items I used.  Hope they inspire you today!

Festival of Prints Designer Series Paper Stack

You're Amazing Clear-Mount Stamp Set

Happy stamping, friends!

Sunday, September 16, 2012

Freshly Made

Freshly Made Sketches is having a One Year Anniversary celebration so I decided to play along.  If you haven't been by this site before, it's a terrific place for inspiration and a fantastic place to find some very clean and simple sketches.

I chose Sketch #12 for my weekend crafting fun.  Here's a look at the original sketch:

Orchard Harvest DSP is my latest favorite patterned paper, so I grabbed it first and then chose my stamps & colors from there.  I stamped my sentiment and punched it out with the Curly Label punch to tuck it under the layer. The leaf, from Stampin' Up!'s set "Wonderfall," I stamped in More Mustard then rolled the edges in Cajun Craze ink.  I handcut the leaf & popped it up on dimensionals. 

I love this time of year (it's almost fall, hooray)!  Enjoy and happy stamping, everyone!

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Angelic Christmas

Oh my insomnia got the best of me the other night... but I made use of my restless night and got out of bed to work on Christmas cards!

I think the angel from this retired Stampin' Up! set, "Angelic Joy," is very serene.  Although her image didn't lull me back to sleep, I enjoyed creating the card.  I added some champagne shimmer paint to her halo and wings.  Since it was very dark outside (3am-ish), I had to make due with indoor photos, so sorry they are not the best.  The close up views below at least catch a bit of the glimmer. 

I used patterned paper from the new SU! DSP, Festival of Prints, and stamped sentiments, both on inside & outside of the card, from a current SU! set call More Merry Messages.
 Here's a view of all the images included with the More Merry Messages set:
More Merry Messages Wood-Mount Stamp Set

Lots of holiday sentiments to use on the outside & inside for greetings help make a variety of "ready to sign" cards. A tip for you- if you stamp the interior sentiment FIRST, before you adhere a card front or decorate the front of the card, you'll have a chance to "re-do" if the inside stamped poorly.  For me, that was an issue stamping at 3am...when I wasn't pleased with my first stamped inside greeting, I just turned the card over & stamped on the other side & hid my boo-boo with pasting my card front on top of my first try. 

Happy Stamping everyone!

Monday, September 10, 2012

Vintage Saint Nick

I struggle with finding "my style" of stamping.  For example, I'm often torn between making "old-tyme-y," vintage look Christmas cards and clean, modern cards.  In my indecision, I just make a variety and keep experimenting.  How about you?  What's your style, and how did you find it?

For my latest take on a vintage Christmas card, I found this very cool stamp from Stampendous, Saint Nick.  The image is fairly large, so it's easy to stamp and use as the focal point for a card. For the card above, I stamped my image in SU!'s Always Artichoke (dark green) ink, and then cut it out with a Labels Framelits shape.  I sponged the paper and edges to give the paper an aged appearance. 

The sentiment is from SU! Bells & Boughs (a great set for making classic Christmas cards).  I also used SU! background stamp, Netting, on my green layer.  That is my "go-to" background stamp to add texture to an otherwise plain piece of cardstock.

Well, only a few months away to Christmas, so I'll keep plugging along.  I've got another card to share later this week, so check back soon.  What a fun break from Halloween crafts, but I guess I better start working on those, too!  Happy stamping, friends!

Love my craft buddy!

Love my craft buddy!
Dog's view of the Craft-a-torium!