Monday, August 31, 2009

Flower Vases

Today's Splitcoast Facebook entry featured the most incredible collection of cards by Freshn'Sassy that was uploaded yesterday. I was awed at these vases of flowers that she did on a variety of cards - all basically the same, just a variety of sentiments, colors and patterns. I couldn't wait to get more details.

Thankfully she credited a tutorial by Michelle Zindorf at Freedom and Creating blog. As quickly as I read it, I was reaching for my oval punch, flowers and sponges to make one of these incredible creations myself.
This card is the result.

It's super easy and quick and is essentially punched out ovals that are cut off, sponged for the shadows and perspective, the edge they "sit on" masked and sponged with gray as vase shadows, and then flowers (I just used flowers from Prima and other sources) added. Took me longer to decide how to mat the main panel and what colors to use!

The tutorial is great and the samples from Michelle and Freshn'Sassy are not to be missed - please follow the links to their creations and leave them a comment or two!

Thanks for visiting my blog today!

Stamps - A Muse (Happy Retirement)
Paper - More Mustard, Sage Shadow, Dusty Durango, Whisper White
Ink - More Mustard, Sage Shadow, Dusty Durango, Going Gray, Chocolate Chip
Accessories - Flowers by Prima, MS edge punch, decorative brads, Marvey oval punch

Sweet Violets

Sometimes you just make a card that is one of your favorites of all time! Maybe it's the image and how you colored it, the layout you used, the colors or the technique. Well this is one of those cards for me.

I had been admiring the Sweet Violets set from Flourishes for some time now but hadn't ordered it - don't know why? Because I was to get it as a wonderful birthday gift from my dear friend and fellow stampaholic Heide! The best birthday present ever! Now every time I use this set I will think of her which makes it pretty special! Thanks Heide!

I made this card for an incredible woman at work that is retiring at the end of September. And with the pearls I used as embellishment, it qualifies for this week's Flourishes Timeless Tuesday Challenge-FTTC30! Each Tuesday a new challenge goes up on the Flourishes Newsletter Blog.

For the card, I stamped the image and colored it with my Copic markers (Flourishes stamps are perfect for the Copics). Instead of just cutting out the whole image with one of my Nestabilities dies, I thought it would be more interesting, and make the beautiful image stand out more, if some of the image was outside the die cut. So I traced from the Labels 1 die, keeping the leaves hanging over and cut it out by hand. I love how that looks! I then multi-layered the image using Spellbinders Shapeabilities Fleur de Lis with Sage Shadow cardstock and Nesties Label 1 for the Almost Amethyst and Banana cardstock layers. I like the look of the Banana layer which seems to bring focus to the image.

For the background, I used my Cuttlebug Swiss Dot embossing folder on VELLUM! With this being a 5 1/2" square card, the embossing folder didn't fit the whole piece. So I carefully repositioned the vellum in the folder for a second time through the Cuttlebug. Even then, there was a small patch that wasn't embossed, so I lined that area up in the folder and with a little hand pressure, made the final embossing on the vellum. It doesn't really take much pressure to emboss on vellum - give it a try! I just used regular adhesive to attach the vellum but did so behind the multi-layered focal image so it wouldn't be seen and the ribbon I used also keeps it in place.

So that's the story of my new favorite card. Hope you like it!

Thanks for visiting my blog today!

Stamps - Flourishes "Sweet Violets", SU Oval All
Cardstock - Almost Amethyst, Sage Shadow, Barely Banana, Vellum
Ink - Palette Noir Black
Accessories - SU organdy ribbon, adhesive half pearls, Nestabilities Labels 1 dies, Shapeabilities Fleur de Lis die, Cuttlebug Swiss Dot embossing folder, oval punch

Just For You Darlene!

I created this card for the Featured Stamper Challenge at Splitcoast yesterday. The featured stamper was Darlene (akronstamperdpk) and what an amazing gallery of work she has. There was just one problem for me - there were too many beautiful cards to choose from, they all inspired me! I must have put 20 of her cards into my "Favorites" list!

After looking through her 1300 card gallery, I chose this card to CASE. I was so excited when I saw that card because I have the exact same stamps from Just For Fun and Endless Creations in my arsenal and they are some of my favorites to work with. Especially the "Just For Fun" postage stamp templates. Making a card with these templates is fast and fun and always makes an interesting card. I used different colors, background panel and sentiment to vary my version from hers.

So Darlene and I are kindred spirits in a way with common fondness for the same stamps. So this is for her with thanks for inspiring me and with congratulations on being chosen as the Featured Stamper of the week at SCS. Enjoy!

Stamps - Just For Fun, Endless Creations Inc (H16), PTI Polka Dot Basics
Paper - Night of Navy, Brocade Blue, Whisper White
Ink - Night of Navy, Brocade Blue, Bashful Blue
Accessories - Fiskars stamp deco scissors, ribbon, curly-cue doo-dad for tying ribbon to!

Cool Cat

Happy Birthday Nic!

I had a fun time with this one. I downloaded a free digi stamp available at Hambo Stamps and printed this in the size I wanted from my own printer. I colored the Cool Cat with my Copics - only had a few tiny areas where the printer ink seemed to bleed but after that I was pretty careful. I got the DP from a friend Laura who does scrapbooking for a living (soooo talented). Pretty simple but a fun card for a 12 year old birthday! Card stock is Only Orange - his favorite color. The sentiments (outside and inside) were printed from my computer - guess I just don't have all the cool sayings in stamps - my 10-year old daughter coached me on this! Enjoy!

Stamps - None - Digital stamp from Hambo Stamps
Paper - Only Orange, Green Galore, Whisper White, DP unknown
Ink - None - Printed image and sentiments from my computer onto Whisper White cardstock
Accessories - Nestibilities deckled rectangles, eyelets, slot punch, sewing machine, ribbon, circle punches

Saturday, August 29, 2009

For Heide

I love this stamp set from Flourishes (Peaches and Cherries) and think it's the most beautiful cherries stamp of any out there. This set was a birthday gift from my dear friend Heide (see her magnificent Splitcoast gallery here). So this is for Heide with thanks and love.

I'm also posting this to the Flourishes Timeless Tuesday challenge this week - FTTC30. The challenge is to use pearls in your card. Since I already had this done and it had pearls and it qualifies, what do I have to lose - right?

It was a lot of fun to color this image with my Copic markers - in fact most of the Flourishes are. I used several different markers for each color - Reds R35, R37, R59, R22, RV29 and the Greens BG93, BG96. G94, G98, YG95. The beauty of these stamps is that when you color them with any kind of shading they look almost three dimensional. Then if you outline the image with a pale grey or sand color like I did here, they really pop off the paper!

The rest of the card was pretty standard. I chose Mellow Moss and Chocolate Chip as the main background colors because of the contrast with the red - in my eye the image popped the best on these.

Thanks for visiting my blog today.

Stamps - Flourishes "Peaches and Cherries"; SU Swiss Dot Background
Paper - Mellow Moss, Chocolate Chip, Artichoke, Riding Hood Red, Whisper White
Ink - Chocolate Chip, Palette Black Noir
Accessories - Half pearls, corner punch, Nestabilities Labels 2 dies

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Blooming With Buttons

This card uses the layout from the Splitcoast sketch challenge 243 this week. I really had fun with this sketch and with using this darling Cosmo Cricket paper.

I also adore this stamp set "Button Bits" from Papertrey Ink. Buttons on cards are so perky and this particular stamp using the buttons as flowers is divine. I mean who doesn't love flowers - especially flowers made of buttons!

Papertrey offers so many different colors of their vintage buttons and they're such a good value. And they're so pretty in my craft room in the glass jars I store them in! It's eye candy in my room!

Pretty simple card really. Thanks for visiting my blog!

Stamps - Papertrey Ink "Button Bits"
Paper - Papertrey Ink Berry Sorbet and Vintage Cream, Stampin' Up Blue Bayou, Cosmo Cricket Girl Friday DP
Ink - SU Kiwi, PTI Vintage Cream
Accessories - PTI vintage Buttons, Ribbon, Nestabilities Labels 1 dies, Martha Stewart scallop edge punch, Cuttlebug Swiss Dots embossing folder

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

"Starbucks" Card

Had a little fun naming this card my "Starbucks" card. This is for the color challenge at Splitcoast - using Chocolate Chip, Real Red, Kraft and Vanilla cardstock.

I love this color combination!

To add dimension to the stars, I scored each point using my Scor-pal from tip to the "V" opposite of the point. Then I just folded on the lines. They were mounted using double thickness foam tape.

Thanks for visiting my blog!

Stamps - Noble Deer, Aida Cloth b
Cardstock - Chocolate Chip, Kraft, Real Red, Vanilla
Ink - Chocolate Chip, Sahara Sand (for background stamp and distressing main image)
Accessories - SU Top Note die, ribbon, star punch

Monday, August 24, 2009

Bedelia Butterfly

Just a quick post tonight with a card I made last week. This features Bedelia Butterfly from High Hopes Stamps.

I personally love High Hopes images - they're whimsical and fun to color with Copic markers.

In fact, I love them so much that my friend Heide and I are in mourning that they will no longer be selling to average, everyday stampers like us (instead going wholesale only). We do however have "high hopes" that a store in SE Michigan will carry their stamps. Of course with our last order, we could open a a store of our own - if you know what I mean!!!!

This card was quick and easy. I colored Bedelia with my Copics and cut her out. I used SU Tea Party DP and bent over the corner to show a bit more yellow to coordinate with how I colored Bedelia's dress. The rest of the embellishments are Prima flowers and a bit 'o ribbon. Oh, and I stitched around the card with my new Janome Sew Mini machine that I had ordered from Hancock Fabrics online.

Hope you like it. Let me know your thoughts!

Stamps - High Hopes "Bedelia Butterfly"
Paper - SU Almost amethyst, Saffron, SU Tea Party DP
Ink - Saffron, Memento Tuxedo Black, Copics for image
Accessories - Prima flowers, brads, ribbon, rhinestone brad

Sunday, August 23, 2009

New Directions

Greetings! I've been surfing the net and stamping all weekend long and this retirement card is a result of the inspiration I received today. It's a double pocket card and I ran across this tutorial on an incredible blog Dream, Create and Share by Tammy Beaver. What I like about her version of the double pocket card is that it has a full card front. Another version of the double pocket is here at Splitcoast by Claudia Rosa at Pretty Pressings.

While the tutorials appear long they are not complicated and I got the basic card constructed in less than a half hour.

I've had this DP by American Crafts in my stash for several months. This stood out for me as I flipped through all my double sided cardstock. There are so many retirements at work coming in the next several weeks that I'm trying to get cards made ahead of time. That's what this card is for and I thought the words on the front worked well tying the paper to retirement. I actually printed the words from my computer onto white cardstock and then used my Nestabilities Sunburst dies to cut it and the black layer out. For the red arrowhead I used my star punch and then cut off the extra points. The clear plastic curved arrow that is mounted on top is from Apple Pie Memories - I've had them forever! I punched a hole in it for the ribbon using my Crop-a-dile (that is the handiest darn thing!). The matching arrow ribbon was from a local specialty scrapbook store and coordinates perfectly. I tried to make the ribbons appear to be the stalk of the arrow.

The fun part of this is on the inside. I love how this double-sided cardstock turns out for this technique. This card design is perfect for when you want to include several messages because you have the pull-out cards for the two pockets plus the inside cover to boot! I lined the back pocket with black cardstock and also used it as the base of the inside left panel. The two insert tags were done using the DP, some large eyelets and the same ribbon (I sewed the ribbon close to the tag vs. knotting it to prevent so much bulk on the inside). On the right front pocket panel I used a corner and stamped "Happy Retirement" using my new A Muse stamp (it's hidden behind the "best is yet to be" tag).

That's it. Not difficult at all and the most time consuming was the embellishing and my own indecision on what to use or not use! Let me know what you think.

Thanks for stopping by today!

Stamps - A Muse Happy Retirement; SU Define Your Life, Best Yet; Gina K Designs Kindred Greetings
Paper - American Crafts "Travel", SU Black, White, Real Red
Ink - Palette Noir Black
Accessories - Arrow embellishments by Apple Pie Memories, large eyelets, Crop-A-Dile, ribbon, Nestabilities Sunburst dies

Julie's Open Window

You might want to hop on over to Julie's Open Window and enter your name for a big blog candy giveaway. Julie has such a wonderful blog - you'll pick up a bit of inspiration while you're there. And you never know - you might just win the wonderful package she put together in celebration of surpassing 100 followers. Congrats Julie!

Saturday, August 22, 2009

Summer Sunflowers

I made this card using the layout from Splitcoast sketch challenge 242. It didn't take me but a second to determine what image I'd use - I'd just received my new Papertrey Ink order in the mail and couldn't wait to get ink on this sunflower stamp!

I stamped in Palette Noir Black and colored the image with my Copic markers. A little sponging to try to anchor the image and then I mounted it on a scalloped rectangle I cut with my Nesties dies from Papertrey's Enchanted Evening blue cardstock.

The background panel is Bordering Blue and stamped with the Aida Cloth background stamp from SU using Enchanted Evening ink (from Papertrey). Other cardstock used is Caramel and Buckaroo Blue - both SU.

I couldn't resist using buttons on this one - I love how buttons are back in style as a design element now. These buttons are from Papertrey - Enchanted Evening Vintage buttons.

Thanks so much for visiting my blog!

Stamps - Autumn Abundance from Papertrey Ink; Aida Cloth background from Stampin' Up!
Paper - Stampin' Up Bordering Blue, Buckaroo Blue, Carmel; Papertrey Ink Enchanted Evening
Ink - PTI Enchanted Evening; Palette Noir Black; SU Caramel
Accessories - PTI ribbon, buttons; hemp cord; Nestabilities scallop rectangle dies; SU scallop edge punch; Cuttlebug embossing folder

Blog Award!

Thanks to Brandy at Brandy's Stamp and Share blog for this award!

I hadn't been in my email in several weeks and when I arrived there this morning this "One Lovely Blog Award" was there from Brandy. Wow! This totally makes my day, week, month......! Thanks so much Brandy for passing this along to me!

And to think I've only had my blog up and running for about a month - actually only two weeks when Brandy picked me for the award!

Now, I get the honor of passing the appreciation to fellow bloggers which is such great fun.

The guidelines (fun rules) of this are to accept the award (yes, I do!) and post it on your blog with the person's name that granted the award and a link to their blog (see beginning of post for Brandy's blog link).

Then select 15 other blogs for this award that you've newly discovered and want to share the award with. Contact them through email letting them know they've been chosen for the "One Lovely Blog" award with a link to your blog so they can get the award image and details to post on their own blog.

So I am passing along the "One Lovely Blog" award to the following 15 bloggers who I've newly discovered and whose work is an inspiration to me and that I think are simply awesome - enjoy ladies and thanks for sharing your creativity!

Yvonne - Yvonne's

Chris - Purple Peonies

Laura - Daydreams and Dandelions

Julie - Julie's Open Window

Leigh - Sunflower Studio

Plaid Pony - My Inky Fingers

Claudia - Pretty Pressings

Frances - Stamp Owl's Studio

Kim - Paper in the Works

Geny - Madison Avenue

Rowena - Crafty Pagan Designs

Julie - The Write Stuff

Betty - Stamping to the Wright

Patricia - Stamping with Kokirose

Cathleen - Crooked Card Creations

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Cocoa Butterfly

After several weeks of a horrendous work schedule and then a total creativity block, I'm back at it in my stamping room - or my "happy place" as I sometimes refer to it.

I made this card for the color challenge on Splitcoast - had to use Close to Cocoa, Taken With Teal and Vanilla. I really like this color combo and have used it before on more masculine type cards.

With the color challenges I usually pull the color cardstock and look at them as I peruse my stamps. Usually a particular stamp/stamp set will scream out to me as the one and this time is no different. I thought this butterfly from Stamp Camp would be perfect - stamped in cocoa and colored with shades of teal. This time, though, I wanted the color to be softer. So instead of reaching for my copics (which I'm addicted to), I grabbed my Prismacolor pencils and gamsol.

I used three different colors of teal to color the image after stamping it in Cocoa. I blended the colors in and through the image using the gamsol and a blending stick. Then I picked up some purple, yellow, green and dark royal blue to blend in for a subtle variegated look and for shadows/highlights on the butterfly. When that was complete, I restamped the butterfly image again using my stamp-a-ma-jig with Versamark and heat embossed using clear embossing powder.

I had the DP already which was perfect match with the butterfly. It's hard to see in the photo, but it also has teal as a main color with all the other colors I used in the butterfly. I mounted the image on cocoa cardstock cut with the Nestabilities Labels 4 die (which is layered on top of teal cut with the same die - just offset enough for the teal to show). A few corner punch details and some dew drops on the corners and that's it.

So I'm feeling good - think I've got my creative mojo back! More to come in the next few days.

Thanks so much for visiting my blog today!

Stamps - Stamp Camp
Paper - Close to Cocoa, Vanilla, Taken with Teal, Basic Grey DP "June Bug"
Ink - Close to Cocoa, Versamark, Prismacolor Pencils and Gamsol for blending (image)
Accessories - Dew Drops, Fiskars "Heritage" corner punches, Nestabilities Labels 4 dies