Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Bow Tying 101 - My First Video Tutorial! (heehee)

Good morning stampers!
Today, I'm trying something new here on the ol' blog! I've filmed my first ever tutorial video with the help of my amazing husband, cameraman and editor, Mark. So, for all of you who have asked me questions about tying the bows I use on cards, etc. and for all of you who have done this in my classes - you now have a resource for whenever you need to practice! Just try to not to laugh too hard! I already have some improvements in mind for the next one! :)

Thanks for stopping by and I hope the video was helpful (and amusing!). Remember, it was only my first try so I'll hopefully get better as we go along! :)

Have a great day everyone!

Monday, March 29, 2010

Subtle Sympathy Card

Well, hi there everyone! Yesterday was the first day of Spring Break here and my plan was to spend all day in the studio stamping ahead of schedule for later this week, but did that happen? NOOO, I spent most of the day cleaning up after my sick doggie and fighting with Blogger trying to post this card I did manage to make. Apparently Blogger was having trouble yesterday which would explain why I couldn't comment on my fellow Blogger's Challenge girls cards from last Friday. We also had to go to Costco (never a fun trip) to get Emma's passport photo taken so we can go stand in line for 3 hours tomorrow in DC at the passport office - or she doesn't go on the cruise with us. And, at 10 pm last night, Mark was trying to help me film my first video tutorial for the ol' blog here. All I can say is that we should have started earlier! hahaha!
Ah well, one really good thing did happen yesterday - Mark ordered our new gazebo for the deck and it's going to be delivered on Monday! Doin' the happy dance! :)

More good news too, my Dad came home from the hospital Sunday night! He still needs the surgery, but they are waiting up to 8 weeks to do it so his heart will get stronger, but since he had started taking food by mouth on Saturday, they thought he would rest better at home! Definitely a Praise God kind of Day! Thanks again for all the prayers sent our way!

Today's card was inspired by three things - the Saturday Sketch Challenge at Stamping 411, the Color Combination Challenge at Just Add Ink and the Late Night Stampers Sympathy card challenge. Here is my card that meets all three challenges:

I saw this color combo on another blog I visit and was intrigued by it since these are colors I rarely work with together - especially the Cameo Coral. But I was really happy with how the final project came together, soft, earthy and subtle.

Here is a close up of the masked focal point image:

I stamped the cross from Refuge and Strength first, then masked it with a post it note mask, stamping over it with the daffodil from Abundant Hope in Blush Blossom ink.
The cardstock layers are Very Vanilla, Blush Blossom, Vellum Cardstock, Cameo Coral, Close to Cocoa and Kraft.
Here's a close up of the greeting:

I used Cameo Coral to stamp the greeting from Teeny Tiny wishes, adding a piece of daffodil to the left side of the greeting stamped in more Blush Blossom. All the cardstock layers including the greeting were sponged with Blush Blossom ink for a subtle shading effect. I used Kraft Taffeta ribbon for that element and the greeting is popped up on Stampin' Dimensionals. After I finished the card, it still needed something and bling just didn't belong on a sympathy card, so I used my Color Spritzer tool with the Close to Cocoa marker and added the speckles - all better!

So hey, about that video tutorial - ya'll have been asking me about tying those bows I've been doing lately, so THAT is what the video is about. We are going to try and post it tomorrow - it needs editing, trust me! And just go easy on me, ok? It's my first one!

Have a great day everyone and I'll see you tomorrow!

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Blogger's Challenge - Another Sketch!

Hey stampers - I know that I usually post my Blogger's Challenge on Fridays, but it's hard to post a card when it's not MADE yet! LOL! :) But I was able to sneak in some time in the studio today and finally create with paper what had been in my head.
This week our challenge Mom, Lisa, gave us a cool sketch to work with:
And here is what I came up with -

Yes, my friends - yet ANOTHER card with Orchid Opulence in it! I am not kidding when I tell you that I am lovin' this color this season! It's almost like I have a new In Color to work with! Which pretty much means that I'll get over it soon and move on to something else! hahaha!
I'll add my supply list at the bottom of this post, but for now, here's just a few details:
I sponged all the exposed edges with Creamy Caramel ink, including the Orchid cardbase. Creamy Caramel was also rubbed all over the Kraft cardstock layer to bring out the dry embossing I did with my Big Shot and Texturz plate.

The butterfly started out as Whisper White cardstock, but I sponged a combo of Creamy Caramel and Orchid Opulence all over that then added bling with some Dazzling Diamonds glitter. The body and antennae are done with Linen thread wrapped around several times and tied off in a double knot. It's attached with a Stampin' Dimensional.
The flower was made with Shades of Spring DSP and my Flower Trio Punch, I just punched out 4 mid size flowers and one small one then crumpled them up, flattened them out, punched a hole in the middle and threaded them onto an Old Olive brad. It was fluffed up and then sponged with a little Creamy Caramel ink too. It's attached with a Stampin' Dimensional as well.

The stamped swirl background is a SNEAK PEEK of a new Summer Mini Stamp Set called Elements of Style - you will love this set! I cut my Whisper White circle first with the Big Shot, stamped the image, layered it onto the Big Shot cut scalloped circle of Orchid Opulence and used SNAIL to attach it to the dry embossed Kraft cardstock.

For the greeting, I used Teeny Tiny Wishes and punched it out with the Small Oval punch. It was overstamped with a shadow of the swirl - 4th generation ink from the original impression. That is popped up on dimensonals too.

And I didn't want to leave a naked inside, so I stamped the swirl again in the lower left corner of a piece of Whisper White cardstock and sponged it as well, then adhering it to the inside of the card.

So that's it folks! Taken step by step, it's a really easy card to put together and pretty too! Be sure to check out all the other Blogger's Challenge players and their take on the sketch by clicking on the link in my sidebar. There's sure to be some great ideas with those gals!

Have a wonderful Palm Sunday weekend everyone!
Hosanna to the King!

Supplies Used (all SU!):
Stamps: Elements of Style (sneak peek!), Teeny Tiny Wishes
Cardstock: Orchid Opulence, Kraft, Whisper White
Inks: Orchid Opulence, Creamy Caramel
Accessories: Big Shot with Circles #2 Die, Scalloped Circles #2 Die, Texturz Plates, Beautiful Wings Embosslit; Flower Trio Punch, Small Oval Punch; Dazzling Diamonds Glitter, 2 Way Glue Pen; Chocolate Chip Double Stitched Grosgrain ribbon; Shades of Spring DSP; Earth Elements brads; Stampin' Dimensionals, Stampin' Sponges

Shimmer Spray

Hi again! I'm just popping by because I've gotten a few questions about the Hand Sanitizer Shimmer Spray I used on my Stamping 411 card today. And since it's easier to post a photo and show you as opposed to responding to all the questions separately - that's what I decided to do.

Here is the photo of the two supplies you need:
Spray Hand-Sanitizer and a jar of Shimmer Paint (any color will do, but I used Champagne Mist)

The hand sanitizer I used was available at Memento Mall during Leadership and I'll never forget how after Shannon West showed us how to make this spray from Main Stage - there was a hasty exit by MANY demos rushing to get downstairs to buy them up! I passed a friend of mine on the escalator who was joyfully holding a bag over her head saying "I got some of the last ones!".
The bridal gown run at Filene's Basement has nothin' on determined SU! Demos.
Fortunately, I'd purchased a few of these babies the day before - granted, it was for the traditional use, but hey, at least I had some!

Anyway, you can use any spray hand sanitizer and they are readily available at most drugstore chains. All you have to do is unscrew the spray top and drain out just a little of the sanitizer. Then slowly pour in a little of the Shimmer Paint. The paint will sink to the bottom, so just drain off sanitizer and add paint until you have the mix you want. I probably added too much, but then again, you can never have too much bling, right?

When you are ready to spray, just shake up the container, hold it back a little bit from your project ( I recommend testing the spray power first, some will spray more forcefully than others) and spritz until you get the blinginess you are looking for! It helps keep your work area bling free if you use a piece of Grid Paper to catch the overspray. And if you happen to get some on your hands, well then, they are clean and shimmery!
Since the sanitizer sprays are alcohol based, they dry almost instantly - awesome!

Have fun with your Shimmer Spray and be sure to share your creations with me and the other Operators at Stamping 411!

Friday, March 26, 2010

Stamping 411 Saturday Sketch Challenge - and a Bonus!

Wow, what a week it's been! So glad you guys are hanging in there with me - I hate not posting like I regularly do, but I have had a lot of time in the car to PLAN projects, does that count? haha!
Just a quick update, my Dad is stable and we are still in a wait and see period regarding his surgery. Long story short, he has a hole in his gall bladder, it needs to come out, but his heart isn't strong enough for him to survive the surgery - scary stuff, but we know that God is in control and will take care of it in His time. That, and praying friends like you are my greatest source of comfort, so thank you!

So here we are with another fabulous sketch from Stamping 411 - Selene does a marvelous job creating these sketches for us and I love how they stretch me creatively. This one seemed very simple at the outset, but once I started working on my card, it went in a totally different direction than I'd planned - NOT that this ever happens to you, but I think some of you might be able to relate! :)
Here is this week's sketch:

Oh yes, I almost forgot, I gave myself the additional challenge of incorporating Patti's Color Challenge from the 411 this week as well! If you read her blog entry, she talked about seeing Robin's outside her window and you know I HAD to play along! Now she can see a Robin on her computer screen too! heehee....

Actually, it was this color challenge that sent me on my creative detour - I was thinking cutesy and springy but if you look at the finished card - it's anything but!

Yep! I told you so, it's definitely different! But I REALLY like it!
I call this style Neo-Bordello - ok, maybe not, but what then should I call it? Any suggestions?
Here, take another look: I know, ooooooh, sparkly!

In retrospect, I think I would change one thing on this - MAYBE - and that would be to put Basic Black behind my greeting. But then again, I might not because it might make it look too....hmmm....serious (or morbid) and I definitely don't want that look! Well, maybe some of you crazy Twilight people might like that black there and maybe change the greeting to something not involving your Mother, but I'm really digressing here, eh?

Actually, this is the perfect time to mention that I have a friend in Arizona - Diana - and she is one of those crazy Twilight people (I still love ya Di!). Well, we got into an e-mail discussion about Twilight vs. Pride and Predjudice on Thursday night (actually it was about the male leads, but that information reveals my secret crush and I can't put THAT on here - well, I guess I just did!). Anyway, I contended that P&P and that certain Mr. Darcy in his rain scene and the sunrise scene at the end beats the heck out of Mr. white-face vampire boy any day. Di disagreed with me as any self-respecting Robert fan would do - but it did make her dust off her copy of P&P to watch it again! Yeah, it's just the best movie EVER! Guess that makes me a crazy P&P person, huh?
Now, don't go all hatin' on me if you are a Twilight fan, just love me anyway because my heart belongs to Darcy......I mean MARK!~ That's my wonderful hubby. Yeah. :)

Oh, hey, I was talking about a CARD here wasn't I?
Guess I'd better get on with it, huh?
And to make it easy, I'll put my supply list at the bottom of this post along with measurements for the cardstock and paper, ok?

So, starting with the folded card base I used the swooshy stencil from the Decor Elements Vintage Ornaments I set to create the super cool background. I simply laid it on the Rose Red cardstock and used my Sponge Dauber to add Basic Black Craft ink to it. (The craft ink is more opaque and looked better against the darker cardstock.) The swoosh was done twice, just turning it the opposite way for the other corner. I didn't heat set it, but just let it dry while I worked on the layers, greeting and embellishment.

My layers are pieces of Regal Rose and Basic Black cardstock, a piece of Old Olive Patterns DSP and that yummy-licious Old Olive Satin Ribbon! Love it!
I wrapped the ribbon around the three paper layers and secured it on the back, then attached them to the card front.

I tied one of those fun poofy bows and then got out my Pretties kit and used the elements to make my hat pin. I actually ran the pin through the bow and then added the bottom two pieces and end cap. It's attached with Stampin' Dimensionals to the card front. Next I added the greeting that was stamped with Teeny Tiny Wishes in Rose Red ink then punched out with the Word Window punch. It's layered on a piece of Regal Rose punched out with the Modern Label punch then popped up on more dimensionals.

For the final touch, I got out my spray on hand-sanitizer mixed with Champagne Mist Shimmer Paint and spritzed it all over the front of the card. It came out a little fast, but can we have too much bling? I think not. And if it gets on your hands - bonus! You have shimmery clean hands!

So that's it for this one! I know this turned out to be a really long post, but I think I've been away too long and I just wanted to talk to my friends! I've missed you!
Now, if you are still awake, go check out what the other Stamping 411 Operators did with this sketch and then it's your turn to play along, ok? We LOVE seeing your creations every week! And this week is special because we have a brand new Operator on our team - Kerin Sylvester! She is an amazing stamper and we felt she would have something different and fun to bring to the stamping table! So be sure to give her a warm welcome, ok?

Stamped hugs,

Supply List: (all SU!)
Stamps: Teeny Tiny Wishes
Inks: Basic Black Craft, Rose Red
Cardstock/Paper: Rose Red (8 1/2" x 11" cut down to 5 1/2" x 8 1/2", folded to make an A2 card - 4 1/4" x 5 1/2";
Regal Rose: 2 3/8" x 4 1/4"; Basic Black 2 1/8" x 4 1/4" ; Old Olive Patterns DSP 2" x 4 1/4"
Accessories: Decor Elements Vintage Ornaments 1 Stencil; Sponge Dauber; Old Olive Satin Ribbon; Pretties Kit; Champagne Mist Shimmer Paint; Word Window Punch; Modern Label Punch; Stampin' Dimensionals

Thursday, March 25, 2010

UDI Inspiration Challenge - Has Anyone Seen My Mojo?

Hey folks! Well, I finally had some time to get back in the studio yesterday and managed to get one card made - the one for this post. In my defense, my time was cut short by a lot of interruptions including a quick trip to the grocery store - yeah, my favorite thing to do too! But I digress, as the title of my post implies - I have left my stamping mojo laying around somewhere and can't seem to find it! I haven't stamped in almost a week - yes, sad, but true- and boy was my lack of creative starting points evident yesterday.

Well, I might as well get on with it and show you my attempt at this challenge photo (be sure to visit the UDI Blog to see what the rest of the design team created, ok?):

And here is my card:

Now, before you ask, "Where are the butterflies?", let me explain that those butterflies in the photo did nothing for me, no, not one thing. BUT, that color combo was really intriguing so I went with that and still managed to add a little butterfly love to the bow accent.
This card is very basic and I'll give you the supply list below, but I did want to point out that there IS glitter on the flowers and the little butterfly - gotta have a little bling! Doesn't that make it all better?

Anyway, don't be too harsh with this one - I'll find my mojo somewhere - or if maybe you have some extra, you can send it my way?! Pretty please?!

Mark and I are headed back to Richmond today to see my Dad - after seeing him on Tuesday, he seemed to be improving, but I spoke with him last night on the phone and he was not himself and in obvious pain. Since he couldn't tell us what his doctors are saying, we need to travel the 2 hours to him and find out what is going on. I thank you again for all the prayers, keep sending them, we need every one.

Stamped love to you all,

Supply List:
Stamps: Awash With Flowers (sneak peek)
Inks: Black Staz-On, Rose Red, Pretty in Pink, Lovely Lilac, Almost Amethyst (I used markers directly on the stamps for the flowers) Garden Green
Cardstock: Ballet Blue, Whisper White
Accessories: Beautiful Butterflies Embosslit, Big Shot, Dazzling Diamonds Glitter, 2-Way Glue Pen, Brocade Blue 5/8" Grosgrain ribbon, Mini-Glue Dots

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Mambo Upsy Daisy

Hi Stampers! Another quick post for you today - I have lots to catch up on in the studio today since I haven't stamped since last Friday! A quick update for you on my Dad, he is still in the hospital but improving after one procedure. We are still waiting to see when his surgery will be, but after seeing him yesterday, he looks and sounds 100% better than he did on Saturday. All my plans for the week are still on hold until we know more, but since he is stable, I'll deal with that!

Today's card was heavily cased from one of my stampin' friends Kay Kalthoff who is also one of my GoDivas swap group. When you view her original card at this link here, you will see that I didn't change much about this card at all - it was really eye-catching just like it was! Plus the gals at Just Cards class and my workshop last week just loved it!

Here is the supply list: Stamps: Upsy Daisy; Cardstock; Melon Mambo, Basic Black, Whisper White; Inks: Melon Mambo; Accessories: Black Gingham Ribbon, Modern Label Punch, Word Window Punch, Clear Rhinestone Brads, Stampin' Dimensionals

Have a great day everyone! I'll be working in the studio today, sticking close by the phone, so I should have some new creations for you to look at for my design teams over the next few days, so be sure to come back!
And thanks for all the prayers for my Dad - we feel every one of them!

Monday, March 22, 2010

Fun Floral Birthday

Good Monday morning everyone! This is going to be a quick post today - just a fun little card that I cased from my friend Barbara Dondero. She is a great stamper and part of my GoDivas swap group too. I saw the card at this link here and just had to case it for my Just Cards classes last week.

If you look at both cards, you can see that I made a few changes, but it is very close to the original - why mess with a good thing? :) I'll put my supply list at the bottom of this post for you.

Just a note to let you know that my posts may be a bit sporadic this week - on Saturday when we went to Richmond for my cousin's memorial service, my Dad had to be admitted to the hospital there and he is expected to be there through the week at least. We will be traveling back there tomorrow and probably again later in the week, so my stamping will be catch as catch can. Thanks so much for all your thoughts, prayers, comments and e-mails - it is wonderful to know that there is a community of friends who care~!
God bless,

Supply List:
Stamps: Happy Moments (SAB)
Inks: Black Staz-On, Stampin' Write Markers: Melon Mambo, Bermuda Bay, Crushed Curry, Pretty in Pink, Green Galore
Cardstock: Whisper White, Melon Mambo
Accessories: Big Shot with Circles #2 Die and Perfect Polka-Dot Embossing folder; 1 3/4" Circle Punch, Word Window Punch, Whisper White Taffeta ribbon, Linen Thread, 1/16" Hole punch, Scalloped Edge Border Punch (SAB), Corner Rounder Punch, Dazzling Diamonds Glitter, 2 Way Glue Pen

Friday, March 19, 2010

Stamping 411 Saturday Sketch Challenge

Hello stamping friends - since it's Friday night it's time for me to post this week's Saturday Sketch Challenge from the Stamping 411 blog. The sketch this week I think has a lot of fun possibilities, and I have another idea for it that I will post later next week. But today I used it to make a very special card for my Aunt Theresa and Uncle Eddie.
Here is the sketch:

And here is my card: (details are at the bottom of this post)

I don't make sympathy cards very often, and I'm glad for that, but this card is for me to give to my aunt and uncle on Saturday at the memorial service for my cousin Tina. She passed away a couple of weeks ago and I have to say it's hit me harder than I thought it would. We were extremely close growing up, but in our late teens, we went our separate ways, living entirely different lives. She had a difficult life to say the least, but I believe she is happy and whole now and in heaven with our Grandma who loved us both so dearly. So if you would send a few prayers our way on Saturday, that would be great - I have a feeling that the service will be a difficult one and my heart is breaking for my aunt and uncle. I know they feel the loss tremendously.

Tina's favorite color was blue, in fact our bridesmaids dresses were a lovely shade of sapphire blue satin, so I used the blue ribbon and cardstock to honor her. The little butterfly is placed on the cross right in the middle because I choose to believe that she is resting in Jesus' arms right now.

I know this post has been more than a little personal, but my artwork comes from my heart and that is what is on my heart and mind today.
Hug the ones you love today and keep them close if only in your heart.

Stamping Supplies and measurements:
Cardstock: Not Quite Navy 5 1/2" x 8 1/2" - folded to make an A2 card 4 1/4" x 5 1/2"
Very Vanilla 4" x 5 1/4" texturized in the Big Shot with the Texturz plates and sponged lightly with Barely Banana ink
Not Quite Navy 2 1/4" x 3 1/4"
Very Vanilla 2" x 3" sponged on the edges with Barely Banana ink
Barely Banana scrap cut with the Butterfly Embosslit

Ink: Chocolate Chip, Old Olive
Stamp Sets: Refuge and Strength, Vintage Vogue, Thoughts and Prayers
Accessories: Ribbon from Elementary Originals Pack; Stampin' Dimensionals, Big Shot

Blogger's Challenge - Think Spring!

"It's a sunshine day!" Ok, quick, who sang that song on a popular TV show? If you know, you'll be showing your age - maybe - but that line is SO appropriate for this sunny Friday in VA! It's going to be over 70 degrees today and just perfect weather to go out and get a smoothie and drink it from an outside table! Yep, that's my plan anyway - wanna join me? :)

So, today's Blogger's Challenge was to Think Spring - that's not hard when it's beautiful outside! The project I created uses some unusual colors together, but the combo reminded me of the transition from winter into spring, mixing deeper tones with a touch of soft color just starting to peep out.

I created this little gift set for my hostess last night and she just loved it! These cute boxes made with the Big Shot Scallop Envelope Die have been so popular to make but they are just really stinkin' cute and make a great little gift set holder. Let me know if you'd like me to put together a photo tutorial for it - there is probably one already out there, but I can do one if you'd like to see it here.

My first photo is a close up of the cute box and satin bow on the front:

Once I cut the envelope pieces, I ran them through my Big Shot again with the Perfect Polka-Dot embossing folder and then sponged Barely Banana ink on the Barely Banana cardstock that I'd used to bring out the texture. I also sponged the scalloped edges too.
The ribbon for the bow is that yummy Old Olive Satin Ribbon that is in the Mini Catalog right now. Love it so much! You need an 11" length to make your bow this size. (on a side note: I've been asked by some of my clients to do a ribbon share for this satin ribbon - if you are a client of mine and would like to be part of a share, e-mail me and let me know - that way I can plan for the right amount to order!)

This photo shows one of the cards with the Kraft cardstock base. I used the DSP from the Welcome Neighbor pack that is a Sale-A-Bration Freebie until the end of March. My color combo is Old Olive, Bermuda Bay, Barely Banana, Kraft and Very Vanilla. Again, unusual, but I really like the earthy blend of them.

The edges were all sponged with ink and I used the Upsy Daisy stamp set for my focal images - that's been seeing a lot of use in my studio lately! I have a card to show you later next week that I cased from my friend Kay Kalthoff that uses it too. It's really very versatile!
The greetings were stamped with the Short and Sweet stamp set and Teeny Tiny Wishes - more versatile sets!

For the simple Kraft Cardstock cards, I stamped the greetings on Very Vanilla cardstock, punched them out with the Small Oval punch and layered them on cardstock pieces punched out with the Large Oval punch. The were popped up on dimensionals for some oomph!

I hope you liked the project and the cards today - be sure to leave me a comment and let me know what you think! And while you're at it, check out the other Blogger's Challenge members and their creations by using the button on my sidebar. They never fail to inspire me!

I'll be back later tonight with the Saturday Sketch Challenge from Stamping 411! Be sure to come back so you can check it out and play along with us!
Happy Stamping and enjoy the sunshine!

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Daisies Awash - UDI Inspiration Challenge

Hey there everyone! It's that time again - Thursday's UDI Blog Inspiration Challenge! This week our challenge mom, Maria gave us this picture of a daisy bouquet that honestly reminded me of weeds. I love daisies, but this particular photo with the dark background just didn't appeal to me right off, but that's why it's called a CHALLENGE, right? :)
So, here is the inspiration photo:

And here is my card:

I chose to go the Clean and Simple route and incorporated the colors, but in different percentages than the photo. My card base is Whisper White, with a layer of Basic Black and a layer of YoYo Yellow (another color that I NEVER use! I was so proud of myself!).

My card creation was made easier by the timely arrival of my pre-order of a sneak peek stamp set from the upcoming NEW Idea Book in July! This stamp set, called Awash with Flowers will be available next month as a little warm up for all the fabulousness that's coming with the new catalog! It is a beautiful set that is super easy to stamp with! I only used the outline images for my card today, but it is actually a two-step set with solid stamps to use for fill ins. Very cool! If you want it early, you have to get in April AND if you are a party hostess - you can get it for FREE!

So all I did for this card was ink up the outline images in Black Staz-on ink and stamp them on the Whisper White top panel. I then used my Stampin' Write Markers in YoYo Yellow and Garden Green to add a little color before stamping the greeting with the Hope Happens stamp set.

Now, I had to add a little bling, so I used my Big Shot and that adorable Butterfly Embosslit Die to make the two tiny butterflies. I sponged them in YoYo Yellow and added Dazzling Diamonds glitter with my 2-Way Glue Pen. The larger one in the lower right corner had it's wings curled slightly and was adhered with a Mini-Glue Dot.
And that's it! Clean, simple and EASY!

Be sure to check out all the other UDI Inspiration Team's projects by using the links provided on the UDI Blog. I know they will inspire you!
I'll be back tomorrow with a fun spring project for the Blogger's Challenge group!
Stamped blessings everyone!

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Blue Vintage Toile

As I had hoped yesterday, the sun came out in all it's glory and gave us an absolutely gorgeous day. I'm watching it rise again right now as I type this and am so glad we won't have any rain for at least a few more days - the weatherman even predicted a 70 degree day for Friday! Hmmm, what excuse can I come up with to be outside on Friday?
I know, if I'm outside, I won't be stamping, but if I get busy and make a card as simple as this one today, I can have the best of both worlds! How's that for a segue?!

The card I'm sharing with you today is not green, but for you stampers that are celebrating St. Patrick's Day - "Erin Go Bragh!" I'm not sure what that means, but I just wanted you to know that I'm thinking of you so please don't pinch me, ok?!
This card is one that we made in Just Cards classes yesterday - aren't you sad you missed them? You'll just have to come next month, ok?
This beauty uses the Bella Toile Background stamp, inked in Brocade Blue and stamped on Whisper White Cardstock. I then used my 2-Way Glue Pen to highlight some of the thicker areas of the image and added Dazzling Diamonds to make it pop! This was then layered on to a piece of Brocade Blue cardstock and a piece of Basic Black 5/8" Grosgrain ribbon was wrapped around the front and secured behind the panels. Next I adhered them to a folded Whisper White cardstock base then I moved on to the greeting.

I am LOVING the Vintage Labels stamp set - which is a FREEBIE during Sale-A-Bration through the end of March - and I used it again here. The label was stamped in Basic Black ink on a Whisper White scrap and then I added the greeting using Brocade Blue ink. This was so easy to do using the New Clear-Mount stamps! I love being able to see where I'm stamping! Once I'd stamped this, I punched it out with the Wide Oval Punch.
To create the Brocade Blue cardstock border, I just used my Ovals Die and my Big Shot to cut the layer. These two were adhered together and mounted to the card front with Stampin' Dimensionals.
Now, could a card be any easier than that? This is definitely a less than 10 minute card! When you need something lovely in a hurry, think about your background stamps and just pair them with a bold color mixed with white - your card will be finished in no time and will be gorgeous to boot!

Have a wonderful Wednesday everyone! I hope you'll come back tomorrow to see what I've designed for the UDI Inspiration Challenge this week. I'd give you a clue, but since I haven't made it yet, I can't! :)

Stamped blessings,

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Charming in Orchid

Hey there everyone! As I look out my window this morning, I see the sun attempting to come out from behind the clouds - boy I sure do hope it succeeds! We need some light therapy around here! :) Come on SPRING!
Along that train of thought, I'm bringing you a springy card today - and more Orchid Opulence! Are you sick of this color yet? It's so funny, I have rarely used this color over the past 4 years, in fact, I've just finally used up my first full pack of 8.5 x 11" cardstock! But hey, color is cyclical and probably by the end of the summer, we will put this one back on the shelf and turn to the next gorgeous trend! That's fine with me - bring it on!

My card today was inspired by this card here that I found on my friend Dena's blog early in February. I haven't used my Charming stamp set nearly enough and I loved the simplicity of this layout! It is also one of the cards you'll be making at Just Cards today and tonight!

For my version, I ran the card base through the Big Shot with one of my Texturz plates (card front only) and then emphasized the embossing with some Orchid Opulence ink sponged over the top and edges. The cardstock layers are Very Vanilla, more Orchid Opulence and Elegant Eggplant. And that gorgeous ribbon is the Old Olive Satin that is in the Occasions Mini-Catalog! Love it sooo much!

The focal image is just simple stamping, I stamped the words first in Orchid Opulence and then used my Stampin' Write markers to color directly on flower spray stamp - Elegant Eggplant and Old Olive. But wait, don't clean the stamp after you've stamped your focal point! Look at what you can do on the inside!

Yep, I just added a piece of Very Vanilla cardstock to the inside and 'huffed' on the still inked stamp to remoisten the ink. That gave me a softer version of the cover image for the inside panel. Cool, huh? :)

All in all, a very simple card, but oh, so pretty and spring-like!
Have a wonderful day peeps - I'm off to set up for card class!

Monday, March 15, 2010

March Just Cards - Space Available!

Just in case you needed something FUN to do tomorrow (3/16)- I have room in both my 10 am and 7 pm Just Cards classes for YOU! Here is a sneak peek of the five fabulous cards you'll be creating and the best part is all you need to do is be here! All the supplies (and yummy snacks!) are provided for you!

You'll enjoy the five projects I've planned for you, I'll be sharing some great ideas from a few of my stamping friends and a couple of my own designs as well! The class is just $15 total and you either call, e-mail me or comment on this post to hold your spot!
Can't wait to stamp with you all!

Vintage Butterfly - More Creative Serendipity

Well, hello there stampin' friends - it's a rainy Monday here in NOVA - a perfect day to stay in and stamp! Which is exactly what I'm gonna do as soon as I finish posting this quick card share for you. You may recognize the layout from this post I showed you a while back, but what you may not realize is that I actually made today's card first and it came about because of a test card gone wrong! Not a mistake, but a decision to change the orientation of that particular card. Since I already had the center panel stamped and it was good, I just decided to make it into something pretty instead of throwing it away!
I was casing myself on this card here for a swap I was participating in and instead of stretching the center panel vertically, I went with horizontally for the swap. So, what to do with my leftover......

Not too shabby, eh? I loved that the butterfly from the Very Vintage Wheel was showing so prominently in the panel, so I pulled out my Simple Friendship stamp set and inked the butterfly image with Bordering Blue and stamped it on Naturals Ivory cardstock. Once I trimmed it out I added Dazzling Diamonds glitter to it and curled the wings with my Bone Folder. I added more glitter to the center panel and finished it off with the polka dot ribbon and bow and a few pearls from my Pretties Kit.
The background is just dry embossed with my Big Shot and the Finial Press folder and sponging was done on all the layers with Soft Suede ink. Again, it's a pretty easy card to create, the layering makes it appear rich and elegant. Cards don't have to be over the top with techniques and fancy folds to be beautiful - a few simple layers, added ink in a contrasting color and simple embellishments can make it really something special. And something you'd love to give away to someone special!

Have a great Monday everyone and go stamp something beautiful today!

Friday, March 12, 2010

Stamping 411 Saturday Sketch Challenge - A 2 Fer!!

It's a rainy Friday evening here in Virginia. My hubby and daughter are making homemade popcorn on the stove and we are getting ready to watch Planet 51 on dvd - a perfect family evening! But, I needed to get this post done first so you all could see the super fun sketch that Selene gave us to work with at Stamping 411 this week! I officially LOVE this sketch! In fact, I loved it so much that I did two cards with it, so you get a 2 FER! :)
Here is the sketch:

And here is my first card:

I KNOW! It's so different! But isn't it cool?! Honestly, I'd been trying to figure out what to do with this sketch all week and after I'd watched Semi-Homemade on Food Network today, my inspiration hit me! Yeah, crazy, but true, ya'll know I don't cook! Sandra Lee used a vibrant blue/white Asian theme for her decor today and it made me think of Brilliant Blue - which I NEVER use! But I thought how fun it would be to use three vibrant cool colors together on a simple white background. Then I thought about how I hadn't used Upsy Daisy in like, forever, so voila - a card was born! :)
My cardstock is Shimmer White for all the pieces and I used not only Brilliant Blue, but Glorious Green and Tempting Turquoise as well. I stamped the image in all three colors separately on pieces of cardstock cut at 2 3/4" x 3 3/4" - the same size as the wood block on the stamp. Once I had my images stamped, I trimmed them to overlap each other like the layout and used SNAIL and Stampin' Dimensionals to adhere them together and mount them to the card front.

The ribbon is 1/4" White Grosgrain and I added a piece of Silver Hodgepodge Hardware to fill that spot. The greeting is from Wow Flowers and is stamped in Brilliant Blue. I so wish you could see this in person - it has such a WOW factor with the bold colors on that shimmery cardstock! So Cool!

Now, for my second card, I'd been wanting to use my Thoroughly Modern DSP for a while now - love that color combo - and I thought this sketch would be great for using up little scraps of dsp that I just can't bear to throw away. Here is that card:

I used Bermuda Bay cardstock for my cardbase and added the textured text background with my Big Shot and the Texturz Plates. A little sponging with Bermuda Bay ink was added to bring out the raised background a bit more.
Again, I used a combination of SNAIL and Stampin' dimensionals to add the dsp pieces to the card.

The ribbon accent is just more of the 1/4" Grosgrain Whisper White and I added a little clip with a tie of the ribbon to accent it.
The greeting is from Wow Flowers once again and was markered in Rose Red and Bermuda Bay. I added one of the large Chocolate Chip brads to the "o" to make it stand out and this piece was then popped up on a dimensional.

So, that's it! Easy, peasy! Don't you just love this sketch? Doesn't it just make you want to go stamp something right now?! Well, ok - let's get to it! But be sure to share your pretty projects with us at Stamping 411! You can use the Mr. Linky widget provided to upload your art and who knows - you might just get picked to be in the showcase next Friday! Come on out and PLAY with us!
Happy Weekend everyone,

Bold Bright Happy Birthday!

Not only is it Friday, it's time for our weekly Blogger's Challenge AND I've also decided to play along with the Color Inspiration Challenge over at Stamping 411! Ya'll know that we operators do the Saturday Sketch Challenge each week, but one of our gang - Patti Chesky - is the color guru and posts a Color Inspiration each Thursday. This is a just for fun challenge, we don't pick a showcase or have Mr. Linky for it, but it's always cool to try out a combo that you normally wouldn't gravitate towards. That was the case with me for this week. Here is the color combo:

Now, I took one look at that and said "Man, that's Bold!" and immediately thought it would be great for a 'fun' card. Since today's Blogger's Challenge is all about Birthdays, that seemed like the perfect opportunity to try it out! And our challenge Mom, Lisa has a birthday on Monday, so "Happy Birthday Lisa!"

Here is my card creation:

If you guys follow my blog or come to my classes, you know that the fun, cute, bright style is not normally my strength, but my daughter liked this card a lot and she is all over that style so I figured it was ok to show you!
I used the color combo of Real Red, Basic Black and Green Galore combined with Whisper White for this card. The stamp set is Happy Moments which is one of the great FREEBIES with Sale-A-Bration through the end of March! The dsp I used is retired Real Red from one of the great Hostess Paper Packs that are available in each catalog. The punched border at the bottom was done with the Scallop Edge Border punch that is also a FREEBIE during Sale-A-Bration!

I like layering texture on texture and the pattern in the paper is a nice foil for the polka dot texture I added with my Big Shot. The two different ribbons added even more texture and I love the layered look so much!

I added even more to the tactile experience of this card by placing the brads on the ribbon - love those polka dot Epoxy Brads! My favorite part of this card didn't photograph very well, but maybe you can spot's the paper pieced gift in the stack! I not only used dsp for one of the gifts, I painted Crystal Effects on it to make the wrapping paper shiny! Take my word for it, it's very cool up close!

So that's it! My fun birthday card with a super color combination! Be sure to check out all the other Blogger's Challenge birthday projects by clicking on the icon in my sidebar. Lots of inspiration for you there!
I'll be back tomorrow with this week's Stamping 411 Sketch Challenge card, so ya'll come back now, y'hear? Oh, man, don't know where that came from....I was watching Andy Griffith reruns last night so my ya'll's are a little more pronounced than normal! LOL!
Love and stamped hugs to you all!

Thursday, March 11, 2010

UDI Inspiration Challenge - A Field of Green

It's a GREEN Thursday on the ol' blog today - thanks to this Inspiration photo from our UDI Design Team Mom, Maria:

Now, I'm not a St. Patrick's Day kind of girl. Yeah, sad, but true. I'm not Irish, I don't drink beer and I don't like corned beef and cabbage (bleech!). Now, I do like those little gold wrapped chocolate coins and I love Lucky Charms cereal - "they're magically delicious!" and I love the color green - that's gotta count for something doesn't it? Well, I hope so because green is the direction I took my card today - not much choice based on the photo, eh? :)
So, here is what I was inspired to make after looking at all that gorgeous clover in the photo:

Yep, it's GREEN! But I really like it! And if you really like it too, we will be making this card next Tuesday at both of my Just Cards classes! Be sure to RSVP so I know you are coming!

For this card, I pulled out a stamp set that hadn't seen daylight in oh, so long, Pocket Silhouettes. I was originally going to use Glorious Green cardstock and ink, but the color match in the photo was very close to Garden Green, so I went with that and accented with Certainly Celery and Whisper White.

The card base is a folded piece of 5 1/2" x 8 1/2" Certainly Celery cardstock, creating an A2 size card 4 1/4" x 5 1/2". I sponged this lightly with Certainly Celery ink on the edges. Next came a layer of Garden Green cardstock cut at 4" x 5 1/4". I ran this through my Big Shot with the Polka-Dot Texture Plate, spritzing it with a bit of water to make the impression deeper. I then sponged some Garden Green ink on the edges and across the front to really highlight the texture.

Next came a layer of Whisper White cardstock cut at 2 1/2" x 5 1/4", sponged lightly with Certainly Celery on the edges and it was layered with a piece of Certainly Celery cardstock cut at 2 1/4" x 5 1/4". I ran that piece through the Big Shot as well with the Perfect Details Texture Plate, repeating the spritzing and sponging to bring out the detail on that piece too.

Three of the foliage images were stamped on Whisper White and then punched out with the Large Oval Punch. I layered them on Garden Green cardstock that had been punched out with the Scalloped Oval Punch.

My stamped and layered ovals were mounted on Stampin' Dimensionals and popped up above a piece of Whisper White Taffeta Ribbon. I added a simple bow with Mini-Glue Dots to the right of the images. For the greeting, I stamped it with Garden Green on a scrap of Whisper White, shadow stamped one of the foliage images in Certainly Celery and sponged the edges once I'd punched it out with the Word Window Punch. This was layered on a piece of Certainly Celery cardstock punched out with the Modern Label punch. I added a Gold Brad accent - thinking of those gold chocolate coins! - and popped it up on more dimensionals.

So, that's my card - be sure to pop over to the UDI Blog and follow the links to the other designers projects, you'll surely find something to inspire you to play along with us!
I hope your Thursday is fabulous and full of warm, sunny skies! I'll be out most of the day getting my sunshine therapy!
Stamped blessings,

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

My Heart Album Project

Good morning everyone - I am glad to be back to sharing with you all today. As some of you may have read, last week was a difficult one for my family as we dealt with two deaths, on top of that we were experiencing an emotionally draining situation at our church and I also discovered someone plagarizing my photos and text from this blog. But I do have to give glory and praise to our faithful God who saw us through it all, provided perspective and resolved the tough situations. I am truly blessed!
Thanks to all of you (you know who you are!) who prayed, e-mailed and called - God knows what we need right when we need it most!

Now, let's get back to CREATIVITY! :)
The project I'm sharing with you all today is a Mini-Album that I designed for a special class last month. It's the "My Heart" Mini-Album and was designed especially for holding cherished photos, quotes and memorabilia. I haven't yet added to mine as this is meant to be a deeply personal book and I wanted the class attendees to be led by what meant the most to them.

Here is the front cover with the pages all stacked up:

For this project, we used the On-Board Heart Chipboard albums from the Occasions Mini Catalog and the Welcome Neighbor DSP pack that is FREE in the Sale-A-Bration brochure. That paper has some great neutral patterns that were perfect for this project!
My cover design is done with the Sticky Cuts Letters - "r" for Robin, and covered with the Chunky Glitter. I used the Sweet Pea Felt Pieces for an accent. The ribbon tie is a piece of Old Olive Wide Striped Grosgrain trimmed at the ends in a flag. I knotted it twice around the bead chain connector.

Here is a photo of the pages all fanned out from front side:

and the flip side:

The only stamping in the entire project is the Dot, Dot, Dot stamp on the chipboard butterfly!
The pages were done by spreading Tombow Multi Adhesive (the green one!) on the blank chipboard, then placing the 6" x 6" squares of dsp overtop, smoothing them out with our hands and a Bone Folder. Then we used Paper Snips to trim around the shape and smoothed out the cut edges with a Sanding Block. That gave it a pretty edge and a little vintage look at the same time.

These next photos are of the pages, two by two:
this set uses Crushed Curry Polka-Dot Ribbon and Old Olive Satin Ribbon. The satin ribbon was attached with a length of Sticky Strip and just pleated along the exposed adhesive.

On these two pages, I used a heart shape from the Sticky Cuts Letters and coated it with the Galaxy Fine Cosmo Glitter. The two little hearts are actually from some retired chipboard that I had a ton of in my stash! We covered them with scraps of the Welcome Neighbor dsp and added them with Mini-Glue Dots. You could substitute any chipboard shape here or even a punched shape.

Next, comes more ribbon scrunching with the Pretty in Pink Satin ribbon and Sticky Strip, then the facing page used more scrap dsp from this pack punched out with the Five Petal Flower Punch. I added a Rhinestone Ice Circle Brad to the center then curled the petals with my Bone Folder before attaching it with Stampin' Dimensionals.

To make the Butterfly here, I used the chipboard packaging that came with the Mini-Album and cut a piece to use with the Beautiful Butterflies die and my Big-Shot. Yes, it cuts through chipboard like buttah! It was then stamped on with Melon Mambo ink, sponged around the edges and I added a small piece of Chocolate Chip Taffeta Ribbon for the antennae. It's attached with Mini-Glue Dots. A double Chocolate Chip Ribbon bow was added to the bottom of the opposite page to connect the two.

For these two pages, I used my Floral Fusion Felt Flowers (say THAT 5 times fast!) along with Silver Brads. Everyone had different flower shapes and combinations but they were all equally lovely! These were attached with more Mini-Glue Dots.

Here I used a piece of Bermuda Bay Polka-Dot Ribbon for the bow and made some paper lace with Whisper White cardstock for the opposite page. The paper lace has Bermuda Bay ink brushed lightly over it after I attached it using more Sticky Strip. How Fancy!

The last two pages utilized more Sweet Pea Felt accents on one side, and the other had more ruffled ribbon, this time with Old Olive Wide Grosgrain. I added a corduroy brad and button accent made with Chocolate Chip and Pretty in Pink pieces and this was attached with more Mini-Glue Dots.

Now, for the final touch!
I added Clear Rhinestone brads to the edge of each chipboard page in a graduated fashion. The brad acts as a page turner of sorts, but adds some special interest to the edges too!
To do this, I first used my Paper Piercer to start a hole in the page edge. Then, I inserted the brads into the hole with the flat side horizontal with the edge. Once I had made the space for the brad to rest, I removed the brad, dipped the end in Crystal Effects and re-inserted it into the hole. After letting it dry for several hours, they were there to stay!

So, that's it! The project was time consuming - about 3 hours start to finish, but really worth the end result, don't you think? I am excited to now get my personal thoughts and photos in it to finish mine up. I was so happy to be able to share it with you all today - let me know what you think by leaving me some comment love, ok? I really enjoy hearing from you all!

Stamped Blessings,