Monday, March 27, 2017

Under the Sea

Today's card was inspired by the sketch from over at the My Favorite Things challenge blog and will also be applied for challenge M2217 "Anything Goes" @ The House that Stamps Built blog, the Simon Says Stamp Wednesday Challenge "More Than One Die or Punch", & the Artistic Inspirations challenge #175 "Just for Fun".

This watercolor technique was one I have been wanting to try out for a while now, because I want to share it in my library class in the month of I pulled out all the supplies and got to work. Using the Kaleidacolor Caribbean Sea rainbow ink pad made achieving the color gradation super simple. All I needed then was a mini-mister, an acrylic block and some watercolor paper. I also made good use of some old circle punches I had in my stash, along with a standard office hole puncher. The stamps are retired and from several sets I have left from my days with The Angel Company.

To achieve that beautiful background look, I "closed" the stamp pad to join the colors together and then stamped my acrylic block directly with the ink pad as you can see below. The top sample was my trial run, and then I did it several more times to see the variation that could be gotten-depending on how much water you used vs. how much ink was on the acrylic block.

After inking up the block, I misted it with water from the mini-mister and then stamped it onto my water color paper. Easy-peasy way to get a beautiful Under the Sea background for my fishie.

I sped up the drying process a bit with my heat tool and adhered the water-colored background to the top of the card after I splashed some Silver FSJ Silk across the front of the turquoise card base. I stamped the sand in tan die ink onto a scrap of kraft cardstock, tore along the top for texture and adhered that to the bottom of the background. (the other half will be used inside the card later-see last pic below)

I outlined the punched circles with a Uniball white gel pen to turn them into bubbles, stamped "hi" in the rainbow ink on a white, punched circle and popped it up on to the largest aqua circle with foam dots. I stamped the fish in the rainbow ink also and fussy cut him out so that I could use foam dots to pop him up right above the sand.

To finish everything off, I used the other half of my sand cardstock scrap on the inside of the card and stamped several pieces from the sealife stamp set along with the "You Make Life Fun" sentiment in black ink. I hope the ladies at the May library class enjoy making this one and trying something new with this water-colored background technique.

Mix It Up Design Team Announcement!!!

I am so very excited to announce that I was notified just yesterday that I have been chosen to be a member of the "Mixed Up Girls" design team over at the Mix It Up Challenge Blog. This is a brand new challenge blog where we invite you to play along with us every month. Our challenges run from 6am EST on the 1st to 6pm EST on the last day of the month. You can enter up to 5 projects and combine it with as many other challenges as you'd like. All of our challenges are Anything Goes -with an optional Twist...each month we will feature a Technique as the optional Twist and you may choose to participate or not. Create a 3-D, mixed media, scrapbook or card project...the choice is your's. Just get started on your creative journey and then please share it with us! Our first challenge begins on May 1st, 2017...hope to see you there!!! :)

Saturday, March 25, 2017

Birthday Balloon Chickie

Today's card was inspired by the sketch @ Reverse Confetti but will also be applied to the Birthday theme for Andrea @ the SIP Challenge and Anything Goes @ Word Art Wednesday. In April, I will send this card to one of my niece's to celebrate her 7th birthday!

I began this card by laying down some light blue ink thru a Tim Holtz Stencil using my sponge dauber tool and some stencil tape to hold everything in place while I worked on the front of a side folded A2 white card base.

I chose a pastel glittery striped cardstock from the DCWV mat stack and stamped the retired TAC "Happy Birthday sentiment on blue scraps I trimmed up from my stash.

The adorable little chickie is from a small stamp set I just got from Unity Stamp Company that is called Bright Little Chick. I joined the Stamp of the Week Club at Unity and this little cutie was the first one I received. Now, once a week, I am sent a gorgeous, brand new, cling mounted red rubber stamp set for less than $8 (including shipping!) + I get a discount on all the past Stamps of the month = LOVE, LOVE, LOVE Unity Stamp Co!!! They are a small, family owned & operated company in Minnesota and your stamps will be "cooked to order".  I can't say enough good things about these folks -so please go check them out for yourself!

The balloon stamp is from a retired hedgie set from TAC, but was the perfect size for this card, so I stamped it twice in black ink on white scraps and colored them up with my Spectrum Noir markers. I did the same with the chickie, but then masked him so that I could stencil behind him on the circle I punched out.

 I used the scallop scissors to trim a vellum circle layer to go behind him and after trimming the balloons, I covered them with Crystal Lacquer and sprinkled them with clear glitter. I used some twine for the balloon strings (the ends were secured by a mini glue dot) and popped up the chickie and balloons with foam pop dots...the other layers were adhered with my ATG gun. (man, I love that thing!)

I outlined the chickie with a clear Wink of Stella marker for a bit of shimmer and traced over the sentiment and the pink bow-tie with a clear Sparkle Dust Gelly Roll pen.

For the inside, I punched more circles out of scraps and after die-cutting the number 7, I ran it thru my Xyron sticker maker -facing down- so that I could apply prisma glitter to the surface. A little bit of multi glue to adhere it and this card is now ready to go out in the mail!

Friday, March 24, 2017

2017 Spring Coffee Lovers Blog Hop

Today's card is one that I made for my oldest niece's teenagers go, she is already addicted to her coffee and partial to Starbucks, at that, lol! But I am totally OK with that ;)

I don't have many photos to share for this one, but I still wanted to be able to link it up for the Coffee Lover's Blog hop and I plan to have at least 1 more coffee/cocoa/tea themed card to share with you before the hop is over next Friday. I used a retired Stampin' Up! stamp set along with a retired Latte sentiment set from The Angel Company. The card design was made using a Shutter Card Template from Hot Off The Press. I love working with these templates because the sizing for all the layers is already laid out for you. You don't have to do any math...just choose your papers, trace, cut and assemble! Be sure to visit Coffee Loving Card Makers for all your coffee loving card inspiration -Enjoy!

Tuesday, March 21, 2017

Spring Basket Birthday

Today's card was inspired by the sketch challenge @ PCC235 and by the Spring themes @ the heARTful stamping challenge, the oh-la-la: Spring is in the Air  challenge & the Great Impressions monthly blog challenge.

My Grandma's birthday falls pretty close to Easter this year, so I went with this pretty spring basket stamp from the *free* Fun Stamper's Journey Bloom This Way mini catalog gift with purchase Bloom Benefits ATS stamp set called "Happy Eggster" (Bloom Benefits are free with a $50 order)...only available through March 31st. 

I have been using this Old World Mat Stack paper pad from DCWV quite a bit lately -I just love the variety and the colors/patterns are very much a vintage style that I love. The size is great -I just trim a tiny bit off the long side and the part that I end up trimming off the short side always ends up inside my card -really ties it all together nicely. I used a white A2 size top folded card base and punched the circle from scrap after stamping the basket with Black Licorice ink. I rubbed the Ballet Blue mini ink pad along the edges of the circle to give it some definition too.

My Grandma is a very talented crafter -she sews, knits, crochets and has made scrapbooks and cards with paper, ribbon and stickers for as long as I can remember. The skinny, light blue Offray ribbon actually came to me from her crafty stash during her last move, so I am being sure to put it to good use, lol! The Scrapper's Floss I used to tie a knot through the teal button I chose from the selection shown above and the mini glue dots will hold the button onto the card front.

I ran a piece of kraft cardstock through my embossing machine in the Basket Weave folder to create the dimension on the left side of the card and tied the ribbon around it before adhering it to the card front with my ATG gun. Choosing  blue and teal scraps of textured cardstock from my stash, I trimmed them down into thin strips that are about 3/8" wide and stamped Happy Birthday on the right side of the blue one. I used the large scallop scissors to trim the left over piece of patterned paper that I adhered to the inside of my card -see photo below.

 I colored the image with Spectrum Noir pens and one BIC marker (for the green leaves and flower stems) and lightly sponged more of the light blue ink around the basket. I layered the focal circle on top with foam squares for a bit of dimension and the final step was layering clear rhinestones on top of the Sparkling Clear Sequins Mix from Pretty Pink Posh and adhering them to the card front with CTMH Liquid Glass.

And the inside...

This card is all ready to go out in the mail in a few weeks -hopefully by then it will have begun to feel like Spring here in south-central Pennsylvania, lol!

Sunday, March 19, 2017

Lovely Plum Rose: CFC169

Today's card was inspired by the "Off the Edge" challenge over @ the CAS-ual Fridays blog  and by a tutorial I saw on Split Coast Stampers a while back that I've been meaning to try...they called it a "tent topper card". What I love best about it, is that it finishes up to be a standard size 4 1/4" x 5 1/2" card- so it mails easily in a regular A2 size envelope. I will also be applying this card to the Anything Goes Challenge RRCB58  over @ Retro Rubber, since the rose stamp I've had in my stash since the early 2000's. 

Once I got started, I decided that this card will also be one that the library gals get to make during the month of May. So when I gathered my supplies, I made sure I had enough to make up kits for at least 10 more cards. After choosing my pattern papers and the script embossing folder, I cut a white card base of 4 1/4" x 8 1/2 " and scored it in half at 4 1/4" to make a top folding square card. I cut the white and dark plum circles using my Creative memories circle cutting templates...the plum is about 1/4" wider than the white one is- around 3 1/8" across.

I first stamped the Antique Rose (retired stamp from the Angel Company-circa 2003?) on a scrap of cardstock to get a feel for where I wanted the image to fall on my circle and then cut it out. Once that was done, I  fussy cut around the rose to use as my mask for inking the background later and saved the negative outside of the circle to use as my template when stamping my final image...I left it in the base of my Stamp Perfect (held down by the magnets and tucked tightly into the left corner) laid my white circle in the hole it provided, inked up my stamp (keeping it attached in the same spot on the lid) in black ink and got a perfect impression. 

Using repositionable sticky dots, I laid the fussy cut rose piece over the rose on the white circle to mask it off and keep it white, then applied Antique Linen Distress Ink with a Ranger blending tool to color the background that soft creamy tan color. Once I removed the mask and rubbed off any remaining adhesive, I colored the rose and leaves with eyeshadow/makeup sponge applicators & 2 colors of Stampin' Up chalk pastels...using Perfect Plum and Garden Green...and layered the rose circle onto the plum circle.

Next, I ran two colors of the plum patterned paper through my embossing machine with the script folder, sanded it to reveal the white and cut them to fit the card front and meet in the middle. Using tape runner, I added the layered rose circles to the top of the card...lining it up so that the length of the card reached 5 1/2" from top of the circle to bottom of the card. This leaves about 1 1/4" of the circle hanging freely off the top of the card, so I had to be sure not to add any adhesive to the top of that circle, lol! 

 I tied a lilac organza bow along the seam of the patterned paper that fell just under the bottom of the circle and diecut an ornate label in white to stamp my "With love" (clear stamp- origin unknown) sentiment on, using a dark purple dye ink. The sentiment I then popped up on to the card front with foam squares. Inside, they will have the option to stamp either "Happy Mother's Day" or "Happy Birthday". Thanks for reading along with me and I hope you'll give making a Tent Topper Card a try next time you sit down to craft!

Friday, March 17, 2017

Kraft Santa

Today's card was inspired by the sketch @ Christmas Card Throwdown and the theme @ the Merry Christmas Challenge. I will also be applying it to the March Anything Goes Christmas Challenge @ Happy Little Stampers.

The stamp set I used is from A*Muse Studio and is called "Santa Claus is Coming to Town" the time of writing this post, it is on sale for 50% off for only $15 and it is a huge set with 2 different santas plus a ton of sentiments! (Don't mind the reflection of the twinkle lights in my photo below...I have them strung around the bulletin board that is hung above my desk to help illuminate the wall above my stamping area, lol)

  I used a top folded kraft A2 size card base and Black Licorice ink for all the images. To make sure the presents lined up exactly where I wanted them to a -sitting perfectly in the santa's hands, I stamped the santa first using my new Stamp Perfect tool on my both my scrap of kraft and on white typing paper. I then removed the santa stamp and stamped just the presents on the typing paper -one at a time -to check the placement and when I got it right where it needed to be, (which happened on the first try because these stamps are so awesomely indexed and cut!) I left those 2 stamps on the lid of the Stamp Perfect, swapped the white paper out for my kraft paper with the santa already stamped on it and stamped the presents one final time.

I then colored up the santa with colored pencils...accenting the silver buckle and the ribbon on the presents with a clear Stardust pen, a silver gel pen and silver Wink of Stella. I used the clear Wink of Stella to add a bit of sparkle to anything that was white. I closely trimmed around the santa with my micro-tipped scissors so that I could pop him up in the card front later. The small strips of red and green were trimmed using my paper cutter, the ornate label was diecut and the HoHoHo sentiment stamped in the middle. I then used the silver Wink of Stella to also color the outside edge of the sentiment diecut.

Next came the details of card assembly and adding just a bit more 'bling" to the card front. The card stock strips were adhered to the left side of the card and a strip of thin silver glitter washi tape was added to the center of the largest green strip. I cut a piece of the silver metallic trim and coiled it into a circle, securing it to the back side of my cut out kraft santa with the same foam dots I use to pop it on to the card front. I then decided it was still missing "something" I trimmed around the typing paper santa from earlier and used it to mask my santa while I splashed my Fun Stampers Journey Silver Silk across the card front. That was exactly what the card needed to be complete!

Now that my project is finished, it will go on the small pile of cards that I hope to continue to add to  all year long, so that I am prepared when the Holiday season rolls around in 2017!