Monday, February 28, 2011

Go Ride a Bike

This week's challenge for CAS108 on Splitcoast is 'the great outdoors'.  We've been having fairly nice weather lately...almost good enough for bike rides around the neighborhood.

I included some flowers with my papers, and along with the flowers in the basket, this seemed outdoorsy enough for me.  The wheel hubs and flower centers are bedeckled with Stickles for a triangulation of bling, and a small row of piercing echoes the holes from the border punches.

I didn't stamp a sentiment because #1 I couldn't decide where to put it, and #2 sometimes it's nice to have a sentiment-less card.  At least that's what I tell myself.

Stamps - Hero Arts
Paper - GKD PL white, My Mind's Eye calendar kit that was included with a magazine I purchased.
Ink - Tangerine Tango
Accessories - border punches, paper piercer, Stickles, SAMJ

Hope your week is off to a great start!


Sunday, February 27, 2011

Another Challenge

I was happy to take a break from my painting this morning so I could make a card for this week's Less is More 4 challenge.  I was thrilled when I read the challenge  -  a recipe to use 3 squares - because I had the perfect sets for it...the newly released Bitty Background Blocks by PTI and Quilter's Sampler that were still in my New Stamp basket.

I absolutely love how this ended up.  It evokes such a warm feeling.  The 3 squares were stamped on scrap paper and cut out with pinking deco scissors.  I used a real needle and thread to embellish.

Stamps - PTI Bitty Background Blocks, Quilter's Sampler
Paper - So Saffron, GKD PL ivory
Ink - Baja Breeze, Cajun Craze, Old Olive
Accessories - deco scissors, needle, thread

I've had a few requests from my readers to subscribe to my blog by email, and that suprises and flatters me!  Since I am severely computer and blog design challenged, I didn't know how to set it up.  So after about an hour or more of searching, reading 'help' topics that were no help, reading chat threads and such, I figured it out and now have it all set up.  I would love to have you subscribe.  And thanks to those who prompted me to figure it out!  I appreciate you!


Friday, February 25, 2011

Catching Up on Challenges

I really missed participating in some of the challenges out there, so I got caught up with some of them today.

My first card is for this week's CAS107 challenge to create your own background.  I sponged mine, and used a stamp out of my new stamp basket.  Woohoo!

I tried spritzing the background with water to get a watercolor effect, but it didn't work and just ended up warping my card.  It isn't bad now that it has completely dried.  Maybe I needed more ink to get the effect I was after.  ??

I off-set the sentiment to the left to balance the image placement on the right.

Stamps - Hero Arts Leaf  Cluster and sentiment
Paper - GKD PL white
Ink - various Memento dew drops for sponging and the image
Accessories - Nestabilities circle (to make mask for sponging), sponge, SAMJ

Next is a card for the Less is More week 3 theme challenge where the theme is spring.  Spring makes me think of planting pots of flowers, so that's what I made on my card.

Last year, I bought all new planters for our patio, and they were all blue.  I love how the blue makes the flowers seem so much brighter, so I colored my flower pot blue.

Stamps - Blooming with Love
Paper - GKD PL white
Ink - Memento tuxedo black
Accessories - Copic markers, Star Dust Stickles for flower centers

And my last challenge card for now, this time for OLW42 hosted by Jennifer Styles.  The theme is music.

Another (lame) attempt at a collage card, but I guess it's ok.  My practice scraps were much worse!  I off-
stamped the gray once so it wasn't so dark.

Stamps - Extreme Elements, Extreme Guitar, Hampton Art sentiment
Paper - GKD PL white
Ink - Memento Rhubarb Stalk, Paris Dusk, London Fog

I'm glad there are so many challenges to choose from.  They help keep my mojo flowing!


Thursday, February 24, 2011

Back to Stamping!

Yea!  I was finally able to break the seal into my craft cave and stamp a few things.  Our basement is finished as far as the construction, now I just need to paint and lay the flooring.  I still haven't decided on what color I am going to paint the walls, and since I threw my back out reaching around a corner to turn a light off (of all things!), it may be a few days before I paint anyway.  Any excuse I can use to be able to stamp is good enough for me!

I have never really been a huge fan of negative image stamps, but seeing some samples of them recently got my creativity flowing.  And I just had to use my Archiver's 30% off coupon for something!

This image was embossed on black cardstock, then colored with chalks.  (Something I haven't used in forever.)  Once the image was colored and cut out, I very gently went over the embossing with my heat tool again to remove any traces of chalk.  Just be careful not to burn the embossing.  Don't ask me how I know, I'll tell you anyway - I had to do it all over again.


Lesson learned.

Stamps - Hero Arts Poppy Background
Paper - Basic Black, Regal Rose, Rose Red
Ink - Versamark
Accessories - clear EP, heat tool, chalks, cotton swabs, ribbon, cobochons, dimensionals

This image was embossed with white on white cardstock and colored with Copics.  It was easy to remove any stray ink with my Copic blender pen.  I was amazed at what a difference this little step made.

Stamps - Hero Arts Large Blossom
Paper - Rose Red, Regal Rose, GKD PL white
Ink - Versamark
Accessories - white EP, heat tool, Copic markers, ribbon, half pearls, dimensionals

Then I decided to play.  The following images haven't been made into cards yet, but I can color them or leave them like they are, use them as the main image, or as a background.

I brayered the ink on white cardstock and stamped with Memento black.  I think this would look even better if it were embossed.

Pink embossing powder on black and white cardstocks.

Yellow embossing powder on black and white cardstocks.

Purple embossing powder on white cardstock.

I have strayed into a different style of stamp, and I really like all the possibilities there are with these images.  I like it even more that I went out of my creative comfort zone and liked the results.

What have you done lately that was out of your comfort zone?


Saturday, February 19, 2011

Basement Update

The construction crew made much progress this week, and our basement has drywall and the first round of mud and tape.  Needless to say, it is a mess down there with fine white powder everywhere.  They clean up everyday before they leave and have an evacuation fan running through one of the windows, but that powder is everywhere!

My craft cave door is taped shut, and I am almost afraid to break the seal.  I really don't want to clean white powder off of everything, even though I know I will have to do a deep clean once the basement is done.

I have a few new stamps I am dying to try, so I will be back to stamping just as soon as I can.

We are heading up to the mountains for some snowboarding in fresh powder.  Hope you have a great weekend, too!


Monday, February 14, 2011

Happy Valentine's Day!

Nothing like waiting 'til the last minute to make my Valentine's cards.  I had them made a little before 3:00 today, but haven't had a chance to post until now.

I made three cards in about 45 minutes today.  I think that is a record for me.  It usually takes me that long to make one!

First up, a card for my daughter...

I thought it would look cute for the dog to be looking at the sentiment.  The heart was an afterthought, but I think it looks cute.

She loves dogs (even though we have cats), so when I saw this set on clearance at Joann's for $2.97, I couldn't resist.  All the dogs in this set are really cute, and she'll love them all.  I love how my brand X ribbon matched my Memento ink perfectly.  When does that ever happen?

A card for my son...

Talk about killing two birds with one stone.  Same idea - dog looking at sentiment - but different layout and colors.  Twine instead of ribbon since he would think ribbon was 'girly'.

Stamps - Inkadinkado Dogs, PTI Love Birds, Amuse oval
Paper - GKD PL white
Ink - Real Red, Memento Rose Bud, Angel Pink, Danube Blue, Summer Sky
Accessories - Ribbon, Baker's twine, Post-it notes for masking

And of course, one for my hubby...

This set from PTI is so easy to use for CAS cards, and I made this card in the blink of an eye.  The heart was added by the sentiment for the third leg of my red triangle.

I was patting myself on the back after I made these three cards today.  I love them all!  *pat, pat*

Hope you had a wonderful day filled with lots of love!


Sunday, February 13, 2011

A Very Large Flower and a Prize

Here is a card I made for the Less is More week 2 challenge.  This time it was to use trees or flowers for the theme on a one layer card.

I stamped the flower in eggplant, then used my aquapainter to pull the color from the image to color the flower.  It was hard to do on regular cardstock for such a large image, and I think using watercolor paper would have been a better option.  I'll make a note of that for the next time I want to try this technique.

It's amazing what a little bling will do to 'make' a card.  All the flower needed was just a touch of Stickles.  Coloring the entire center of the flower would have been too much, but just a little bit gave it just what it needed.

I even managed to use two of my new stamps, so they won't be living in my new basket anymore. Yippee!

Stamps - Hero Arts large flower, PTI Simple Sentiments
Paper - GKD PL white
Ink - Elegant Eggplant
Accessories - Daffodil marker, aquapainter, Stickles

Our basement is almost entirely cleaned out now.  I still have a few odds and ends to get packed up, and the crew will be here first thing in the morning. 

I have a question for you.  What color would you paint a basement?  Our entire house is Shaker Beige with the exception of the bedrooms, and I don't think I want to do the same color in the basement.  I want more color, but nothing green.  Tell me what you think, and I may just have a prize for you if I use what you suggest!



Saturday, February 12, 2011

Mega-Sized Birthdays

This is my second post for today.  Please scroll down to see my first post.

I've been double posting a lot lately.  If I post before I go to bed, it's usually in the wee hours of the morning.  Then my post the next day ends up on the same day.  Oh, well, at least I'm posting!

Today's cards are for another one of PTI's sneak peek challenges.  This time it is to think BIG.  Something really big needs to be on your card, whether it is the image, sentiment, or an embellishment.

I saw the challenge in the wee hours of the morning before I went to bed, so I went to sleep thinking of these cards.  I already knew what I was going to stamp when I woke up this morning, and I really like when that happens.  I wanted to use a BIG sentiment, and had the perfect stamp for it.

This is my boy birthday card.

This is my girl birthday card.

Just by changing the blue to pink, I was able to completely change the look and feel of the card.  All the other colors are exactly the same.  The flames were rock 'n rolled which gives them a more realistic look.

Since the Nestabilities label dies don't give an even border between the sizes, I traced the sentiment panel on the colored cardstock, then cut around it adding an even border.

I have a BIG sentiment that serves as my BIG focal point, and there is lots of BIG white space.

Stamps - Fun With Shapes, Cheery Chat (both retired)
Paper - Brilliant Blue, Pink Passion, GKD PL white
Ink - Brilliant Blue, Pink Passion. Daffodil, Pumpkin
Accessories - B Blue, Pink P, Green Galore, Turquoise, and Lavendar Lace markers, Nestabilities label die, Big Shot, dimensionals

Hope you're having a great weekend!


PTI Tag & Frame Challenge

Have you been checking out the sneak peeks at PTI?  As always, I want almost everything they are releasing, but I must maintain some restraint.  I have never participated in one of their sneak peek challenges until now.  I just had to stamp something today.

The challenge is to make a tag that incorporates a frame of some kind.  Since Valentine's Day is right around the corner, I made a love themed tag.

This is about as far from CAS as I can get without it looking like my Kindergarten daughter made it.  Something about a small canvas made it much more doable, and I'm really pleased with the shabby vintage look I was able to achieve.

Stamps - Polka Dot Punches, Tiny Tags, French Script background
Paper - Crumb Cake, Real Red, GKD PL ivory
Ink - Crumb Cake, Real Red, Versamark
Accessories - Nestabilities deckled rectangle die, Big Shot, Copper EP, heat tool, dauber, Full Heart, Jewelry Tag, and slot punches, mini scallop decorative scissors, lace trim, baker's twine, half pearls, ribbon

Whew!  That took a lot of stuff, but it was worth it.

Now lets just hope I win the drawing so I don't have to buy it all!


Friday, February 11, 2011

Just Sitting Here

I made this card a while back, and forgot that I hadn't posted it.

Instead of paper piecing the chair, I stamped it onto colored cardstock, then colored right over it with brown and green markers.  I still had to cut the whole chair out, but that seemed easier than cutting out all those little pieces.  This is a great alternative to paper piecing if the other colors you are using will look ok on the colored cardstock.

I sponged brown ink around the edges of the card, but can't remember what flavor it was.  Oops!

Stamps - Hero Arts Wish You Were Here
Paper - Baja Breeze, GKD PL ivory
Ink - Wild Wasabi,  Memento rich cocoa, ? brown for distressing
Accessories - Copic markers, green rhinestones, sponge

Hope you have a great weekend!


Thursday, February 10, 2011

Less is More Challenge

This is my second post for today.  Please scroll down for my first post.

When I was posting my OLW card to Jennifer's blog, I came across her post about a new CAS challenge blog, Less is More.  I love challenges, so thought I'd check it out.  Chrissie and Mandi will post a new CAS challenge every Saturday.  Sounds like fun to me!

Their first challenge is to use black, white, and pink on a CAS card.  I have made a few cards with the set I used for this challenge, but haven't posted them yet.  I am working on different looks using the same stamp, so I came up with yet another look, and used that for my card today.  I will post all of the cards I came up with in the near future.

I just got the typewriter alphabet stamps on sale at Hobby Lobby yesterday, and they worked perfect on this card.  I omitted the "hello" on the sentiment stamp so I could stamp it below the typewriter with my new stamps.  The ellipsis was made with a marker.  I cut a slit in the typewriter so I could slip the white paper into it.  The top of the paper is popped up on dimensionals.

Stamps - Hero Arts My Type, EK Success Antique Typewriter Upper and Lower Alphabet sets
Paper - Pretty in Pink, GKD PL white
Ink - Memento tuxedo black
Accessories - craft knife, dimensionals

Thanks for stopping by!

Now I must really get going on the basement.  Hubby is giving me looks because I still haven't packed anything today.

But I have to eat lunch first!


OLW A Day Late

I was so busy yesterday, I didn't realize it was Wednesday, and time for one of my favorite challenges. Jennifer Styles is hosting OLW this week, and it was a real challenge. Use 2 (and only 2) image stamps, no sentiments, and no embellishments of any kind.

Time to step it up a notch.

Here is my first card.

I used an acrylic block for my background image. I inked the block, then spritzed it with water before stamping on the card.

Stamps - PTI Heart Prints
Paper - GKD PL white
Ink - Memento Lady Bug and Angel Pink
Accessories - Acrylic block used as a stamp, H20 spritzer, corner rounder

And just because that card was so quick to make, I had to make another one.

This card measures 3"x4" to fit in a leftover envelope I had in my stash. The image would have been lost on an A2 card.

Stamps - PTI Turning a New Leaf, Stampendous Loopy Blooms
Paper - GKD PL white
Ink - Memento New Sprout and Tuxedo Black
Accessories - Copic markers R29, C7

Now I'm off to box up the basement. Hubby is chomping at the bit to get it done, and I'm dragging my heels. My craft cave will be virtually inaccessible during the finishing of the basement, and I'll never be ready to give it up. Even if it's only for a week (or three). What will I ever do?

Monday, February 7, 2011

Whootin' Hi

What is it about a sale that makes us lose all rational thought and fork over our hard earned money?  I mentioned before about our local Xpedx store putting all their stamping items on clearance, and I got some great deals the first time I shopped their sale.

Then I found myself stopping by again.  I guess I thought I might have missed something the first time.

And I did.  I bought a few more things.  Things I really needed.


Then, you'll never believe what happened next.  I went back again!  And found more things I just had to have that I missed the first two times I was there.  What is up with that?  I was secretly hoping they had lowered their prices even more, but they hadn't.  Obviously, I didn't let that stop me.

One of my final purchases was the woodgrain circle stamp by Hero Arts.  All of a sudden it dawned on me that I could use it with my owl and bird punches, and this card was born.

One thing I love about punched animals, is you can make them any color you want, and they still look cute.  Because I'm such a perfectionist, when I color stamped images, I usually Google real pictures of whatever it is I'm coloring to make sure it is colored correctly.  But when it comes to punched shapes, anything goes.  I think that is what makes them so fun for me.

Stamps - Hero Arts woodgrain circle, PTI Wise Owl
Paper - tangerine, saffron, marina mist, black, old olive, Bali Breeze DSP (retired), GKD PL white
Ink - Memento rich cocoa
Accessories - Two-step bird, owl, and 1/8" punches, dimensionals

The best thing about my new stamp is that I only paid $2 for it.  The clerk knew I had been in three times, so she gave me even better deals on a few of my items.  That's a good way to try to get me to go back, but I think I'm done.



Saturday, February 5, 2011

Speedy the Cat's Friends Challenge #41

This is my second post for today.  Please scroll down to see my first post.

Today, I am participating in a challenge from Mark's Finest Papers.  It is to use self-made flowers on your card.  Well, I looked in my stash and just happened to have a few crocheted flowers I made a while back.  This one caught my eye because it looked like a daffodil, and I am really looking forward to spring.  Probably because it is snowing right now.

I died the center of the double flower with a daffodil marker after I had wet the flower.  This made the ink bleed into the center, leaving the outer edge a little darker in color.  I hand drew the stem and leaves with a marker, so there isn't any stamping involved on this card.  The scalloped panel is up on dimensionals.

Stamps - none
Paper - Daffodil, Wasabi, GKD PL white
Ink - daffodil and wasabi markers
Accessoried - hand crocheted flower, ticket corner punch, Nestabilities scalloped rectangle, Big Shot, ribbon, dimensionals, half pearls

I'll be back later with more cards.  I've been negligent in posting this week.


OLW 3 Things

Susan's challenge this week was to use an image, a border stamp, and bling on your one layer card.  And you could not use a sentiment. 

One of my new Hero Arts sets was begging to be inked, and since I need to clear out my new basket to make room for more new stamps, it got its wish.  I love to sew (except on cards - haven't mastered that one yet), and I loved this set.  I know it will see lots of ink.

I'm not sure why I chose these bright colors.  Maybe because it was gray and snowing outside.  I stamped the border stamps twice to frame the image, then added bling in the form of nail heads.  Quick and easy.  That's my kind of card!

Stamps - Hero Arts Sew Artsy
Paper - GKD PL white
Ink - Memento
Accessories - nail heads