Friday, August 29, 2008

Shabby chic greetings

This is one of this month's stamp club projects. We counted up the layers, and I think there are EIGHT layers. Whoa. The scallops are out of Whisper White cardstock and Bella Rose designer paper, cut using a new scallop die on the Sizzix. Around the white layer, I simply colored in small Chocolate Chip circles using a marker. The bird is paper pieced out of another pattern from the Bella Rose pack. Everything that was bright white paper has been sponged with Creamy Caramel classic ink to tone it down and add a touch of shabbiness to the project.

Thanks for looking! Enjoy the Labor Day weekend. :)

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Happy birthday, hubby!

Today's is Ky's birthday! He is such a wonderful guy, that ... here it comes ... his being born, is a gift to me. Awww. Or eww.

I won't go on extensively because I'm guessing he's not reading my blog today. And that's ok. And I don't want you to leave just yet. :)

This is the card I made for him using the new Stampin' Up! set, Crazy for Cupcakes. A little glitter on the flame, with some Crystal Effects on the candle and the scallops down the side to mimic the curves of the frosting. We're going to go out to dinner, and I'll either bake him a cake today or for us to enjoy this weekend. As usual, he's looking forward to a yellow cake with chocolate frosting.

Sunday, August 24, 2008

Thank you for the favor

You've heard about my dog and her ligament replacement. Well, we couldn't have gone about our daily work lives without the help of our sweet neighbor. For the first couple weeks after the surgery, she came over each weekday and let our dog out of her crate while we were at work. When Berkely was cleared to go for walks, she got taken on walks. Our neighbor even handfed our dog, trying to coax her to eat when she didn't have much appetite right after the surgery.

I made this card using the retired Stampin' Up! set, Ruff Day. In the original stamp, the dog is wearing a party hat and I loved how this dog appeared to be kicking up it's heals, I mean heels. :) As additional thanks, we tucked in a gift card for PetsMart so they could buy something for their own dogs.

The dog is colored in with more mustard and creamy caramel, and then I used the color spritzer with markers after I had put on the fun flocking to make the dog furry.

As always, please click on the photo for a larger view of the photo. Thanks for looking!

Saturday, August 23, 2008

Beaded Blossoms

This card has been done since the 7th of this month, so it's not like I'm getting new stamping done. :)

This is my Mom's birthday card this year. I was away at Convention when her birthday happened, so when I got back, I wanted to be sure to both use a new set (she's a stamper, too), and give her something special. I was so incredibly pleased with how this turned out, and it was so fun to see her really appreciate the work this card took. She reported back that she's going to frame it. :)

I'm including some step-by-step pictures for this one. Not because it's hard, but because it's very detailed. This is the new set, Inspired by Nature. In this one, I was just going for basic color, rather than adding detail. I colored the flowers with markers, working from the lightest color to the darkest, and along the stem, I added additional highlighting by drawing a marker just along the edge. The grass was stamped twice, basically in a light green, then a darker green.

Stamp the flowers a second time, adding more detail to the flower heads. Little did I know that by the end, I wouldn't even see the paper on the heads ...

Cut out the flowers and stems. Another option is to just cut out the heads.

This is where the dimensionals (foam dots) come in to making it really special. Below I show it just laying over top of the first stamped piece. You can tell that it was all cut out, and that's always a nice touch.
But, ooh! When you add the dimensionals, it jumps a whole level in wow ( ... at least I think so).
Here's a shot of all the dimensional bits that I used. Because the pieces are narrow, I used the pieces around the edge of the sheet of dimensionals (sorry, no picture of that), and just snipped out smaller pieces to fill up those tiny areas.

Then I used my edger tool to distress all the edges of the white and Rose Red paper pieces. It's mounted to my stand-by green, Old Olive as a base.

One thing I really like about how this turned out (accidentally), is how the large petal on the right hangs over just a smidge, and that one of the bottom stems is actually wrapped under the base image over onto the back. You can click on the image for a closer look.

I liked this pretty well, but to take it to a shabby-chic level, I used markers (More Mustard and Creamy Caramel, I believe) and my color spritzer. Then, I covered the heads with Tombo Mono Multi glue and poured clear micro beads over the top. It was fine, but then I unearthed some tiny pearls and pushed those into the glue, too. The pearls are the only non-Stampin' Up elements on this card. Over top of the micro beads and pearls, I dropped some More Mustard reinker and carefully, carefully dabbed off the excess with the corner of a piece of paper towel.

I had taken a picture of the whole card, but it's weirdly blurry and, well, I don't have the card anymore to take a new one. You'll have to see the one at the top for details on how this last picture looks with all the embellishing. :)

Friday, August 22, 2008

Snow already?

This card was inspired by Stefanie Summerer. She did a cute tri-panel card (and had the sidewalks in front of each house "shoveled"). I planned to do a pretty straight copy - including the watercoloring, but as it turned out, I diverged quite a bit. But that's what I think copying another stamper is most often good for.

I wheeled the image, colored it in, cut it out (not as bad as it looks - but then I always say that). Used my marker and color spritzer for some snow on the card base. Dimensionals all over the back of the houses, then I colored in some snow on window sills, door jambs, tops of chimneys, etc. with my white gel pen. Then I thought about how pretty snow is when it's that really sparkly light stuff. In my stamping world, that translates to Dazzling Diamonds glitter.
My snow along the bottom is three pieces of torn Whisper White cardstock that was layered, 2-Way Glued and Dazzling Diamonds were applied over top. The windows were Crystal Effects-ized (sure, that's a word) and allowed to dry. I tied a ribbon around the bottom of the card, and DONE!
Thanks for looking, and here's to at least another month without snow here in Colorado. Although I wouldn't mind some dropping temperatures ....

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Pink Butterflies

Over the next couple posts, you'll see some "set aside" samples that I just hadn't had time to post. I've been tearing around working the full time day job, working on design work in the evenings, trying to walk the still-healing dog (or massaging/therapy exercising her), holding a stamp camp, and trying to get Ky out the door for a men's ministry weekend.

I am VERY excited because next week, at Ky's urging, I have taken the first four days of next week off to avoid the Democratic National Convention hoopla which is occurring in downtown Denver with the main events at the Pepsi Center, about 3 (long) blocks from our office. I am extremely hopeful to get some stamping projects done during that time.

On to the stamping! This is a card we made at this month's stamp camp. It uses the set, Flight of the Butterfly. I love this set in particular, because you can make a card without using any other sets. I know as a new stamper, it's hard to feel like you have enough supplies to make a project sometimes.

This card base and the red ink is one of the new In Color colors, Riding Hood Red. The plaid paper is from the Bella Rose designer series paper, next up you see a sliver of Whisper White, and the main cardstock with the stamping on it is another In Color color, Pirouette Pink. The ribbon is some of the pink taffeta. The Riding Hood Red elements were stamped first, then some sponging was done around the edges using the Pirouette Pink ink .

The solid (no really, they're there) butterflies are also inked in the Pirouette Pink and stamped off onto Whisper White cardstock, then the dotted butterflies were stamped over that (full-strength ink). Over the dots we put 2-way glue and then Dazzling Diamonds glitter. Once the butterflies dried, they were cut out and mounted on dimensionals.

Sunday, August 17, 2008

Birthday Blooms

This was a stamp project from this week's stamp camp. The three flowers across the top are all mounted together on one block, which made this layout a natural. The dotted chocolate paper is from the new Bella Rose designer series paper. All the stamped items on the card are covered in Crystal Effects for a little more dimension.

Edited to add stamp sets used: Flowers - Eastern Blooms, Leaves - Refuge and Strength, Words - A Little Birthday Cheer.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Blind stamping at stamp club

At a recent stamp club, I did NOT show the stampers what we'd be making, and instead walked them through it step by step as we added elements. It was so fun using both the new pewter Hodgepodge Hardware AND the pretties kit pearls. This was also a sendoff to the In Color colors, Purely Pomegranate and River Rock. It was so fun to see their delight when they saw the finished product. :)

I know that I cased this layout from someone, and I'm sorry, I just can't remember who it was! If you've seen this layout before and know who I should credit, please leave me a comment and I'll update this post.

Monday, August 11, 2008

Boy's birthday card

In case you haven't heard, the Summer Picnic paper made it through to the new catalog from the last mini! That means this happy, gender neutral paper is available once more. :)

Unfortunately, this Level 3 hostess set is going away ... But in the meantime, here's a card that I'm making for one of my nephew's birthdays. I love these candles! And I try not to glitter cards for males often, but I think I can get by with it on the candle flames.

Thanks for looking!

Sunday, August 10, 2008

Feelin' sick?

I'm guessing others have made these cards before, but I saw a couple of these at Convention, and I love using sets differently, so I put this one together in a flash with my Pick a Petal and words from Fun & Fast notes.

I wanted the poor guy's nose to be a red and to use subtle greens to further imply a little sickness, without being depressing or Christmassy. I also liked the humor that's in this card without being overboard. The black eye pupils were made with a pencil eraser and small light reflection dots were made with my white gel pen.

Saturday, August 9, 2008

Another bag tag

The ribbon on this tag is from the "Theater" ribbon set from Stampin' Up! in the Spring-Summer collection 2008 catalog. The color matches the new Kiwi Kiss color wonderfully! The letter is from another We R Memory Keepers set that I got at the discount clothing store for $5 and the set is called Pewter Press.

I liked the layered daubering so much on my last tag that I thought I'd show how you can build texture and interest by layering ink on a colored piece of cardstock.

You can see the more drastic impact of the daubered colors (Summer Sun, Tangerine Tango and Kiwi Kiss) on the grid paper underneath my project.

Friday, August 8, 2008

Luggage Tag Lovelies

These were just a fun little project that came together super quickly! Now I just wish I was going on a trip so I had to attach them to my luggage. :) But no trips until September for me ... I'll just have to make a few more so that I can take some additional bags with me!

The above picture shows the front of the tag and the back is shown below. This card uses Kiwi Kiss, Summer Sun, Tangerine Tango and Vanilla. The ribbon is from Michael's from a while ago and it matches perfectly. The flowers are from the new set, Eastern Blooms (received at Convention!).

In the middle of the flower on the back, there's a copper letter S, but partly I liked it just because of its swoopy shape and copper color. The base piece of this paper is still the Kiwi Kiss that you can see on the bottom layer of the front, but it's been daubered with Kiwi Kiss, Tangerine Tango, and Summer Sun inks. I like how the color is reminiscent of the verdigris of copper that's aged.

On this next one, I've put our last name, and because we share a bag, I wanted it to be something that my husband wouldn't mind leaving on the bag, even when I'm not traveling with him. I used the set Bronc Buster, and more of the copper letters that I found on sale (randomly) at a discount clothing store. The brand of them is We R Memory Keepers and they're from the "Coppered Out" line and I got the box of them for $5!!

The paper is all Stampin' Up!, as are the inks, but the ribbon is a Michael's scrap, and frankly, the eyelets are I don't know what, but they're C-R-A-P, and they're definitely not Stampin' Up! So when you see that they're set like C-R-A-P, that's why. They're cheap, so don't spend too much time looking at them... :)

Here's a look at one of my stamping buddies. My stampers know Berkley as a MAJOR paper thief. You can see a stamping technique book there on the lower right that she's stolen and carried around. When stampers come over, they know that they need to put their purses up high, because otherwise, Berk roots through and takes her choice of items ... but isn't she cute? She's hard to stay mad at.

However, she's recovering from ligament replacement surgery, see that naked back leg? The line across the top is where the incision was. And keeping up with me while I'm stamping is apparently exhausting (see below).

Well ... she never claimed to be a lady...

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Bella Rose Gift Bag

This gift bag/box is made with the new Bella Rose designer series paper, sets Dots are Hot, To Have and to Hold, and the words on the card on front are from the set Full of Life (which I WON during Convention!), Pirouette Pink and Riding Hood Red inks and paper. Around the top of the bag that's folded over I used the new scallop punch from Stampin' Up! that will be available on the 11th. As always, you can click any photo for larger views. If you have questions about how this project was made, please leave a comment.

The bag is made with 2 sheets of 12x12 designer paper and one sheet of 12x12 white cardstock for the "lid" piece. The final box is 5" x 6" and everything is held together with sticky strip. I used two jumbo eyelets for the ribbon (Chocolate Chip 5/8" grosgrain) and the ends of the ribbon are just knotted on the inside of the bag.

The round card on the front was done with my Coluzzle template and the corner rounder punch around the red circle for more scallops which I further punched out with my 1/16" round punch for a doily effect. Some faux stitching and the words Love and Fairytale are stamped and then cut out and popped up on dimensionals.

In the picture immediately above you can see where the "lid" is partially pulled out from the bag. I stamped all over the paper before doing my scoring, folding and assembly with the Dots are Hot set. This is an alternative method to stamping tissue paper to put in with the gift (primarily because I couldn't find my tissue paper). :)

And here's the lid removed from the bag - I think it's cute even by itself! It just slides down inside the bag to hide the goodies.

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Inspired by ... new stamps!

I feel like I haven't stamped in FOREVER for just me. And I've missed it!

Today I show a card made with one of the sets that I got in my Convention bag, Inspired by Nature. These are an interesting challenge for me because I haven't used silouhette stamps before. I also have rarely used my sponge daubers before, but since using them at the Stampin' Up! Convention last week, I felt like I understood better what to do with them.

There are clear micro beads on the flower heads using Tombow Mono Multi glue with a drop of Chocolate Chip reinker dropped on top before the glue dried (please click on the photo for a closer look). Ink colors used include Chocolate Chip, Summer Sun, Old Olive, Tangerine Tango and Kiwi Kiss.

Also, I've been nominated for the Arte y Pico award. :)

Way back on July 16 my sister nominated my blog as one that embodies substance AND style to her. That is so nice. And while it's taken me a bit to recognize this honor, it really felt good to be awarded it; I just had to climb out of an overwhelming period in my life!

The “Arte y Pico” award was created to be given to bloggers who inspire
others with their creative energy and their talents, whether it be writing or
artwork in all medias. When you receive this award it is considered a “special
honor”. Those who receive it are then supposed to choose at least 5 other blogs
to honor with the award.

Here are my five:
  1. I'm pretty sure that she's already been nominated for this, but if it makes some of you visit her blog for stamp inspiration as well as a nearly perpetual good attitude, it's worth pointing her out again. Ever since Jackie came to me for banner design services, I've been checking in on her blog at The Scalloped Edge.
  2. Another blog that I enjoy visiting and admiring is that of Laurie Schmidlin at Just Give Me Stamps. She's a Montana girl with a stamping vision. So impressed by her work.
  3. Hmm, let's see. For number 3 nomination, I went to my Google reader to see who I had "starred" for an inspiration. Joanne B. at "Just a Little Something..." has a segment devoted to what she's doing to be more green in her life (in addition to her stamping posts), and I admired that enough that I donated a little graphic icon for her to use with those posts.
  4. Nancy Morgan of Paper Smiles inspires me in my stamping and in her Bible verse creations. They are another good nudge to me to remind me to think of God during the everyday.
  5. And finally, I'll list Taylor VanBruggen of Taylored Expressions as an inspiration because she has samples other than cards with stamping AND she's gone out and followed her dream and has her own online store with things she loves.
Thanks for looking! I'm glad to be back among you and able to share some of my creative efforts again. I think that my creative battery just ran low, but it's recharged now and I'm ready to go!