Thursday, December 3, 2020

Holiday Tags

 This is a slightly different post from me, since I'm not writing about a card. Instead, I'm sharing 6 holiday tags I made for the 10th annual "25 Tags of Christmas" challenges.
Tracy McNeely's tag on Day 26 inspired my first tag. I didn't have the same dies she used, but I have Sunny Studio's "Merry Sentiments" stamp set & coordinating die, which I figured is a good substitute. I first die cut 3 bulbs, keeping the negative cardstock as a stamping template for my MISTI stamp positioning tool. I put tape behind one of the die cut openings, sticky side facing up, & stuck one light bulb into that spot. I positioned the most solid stamp, and picked it up with the MISTI door. I used Lawn Fawn Jalapeno, Memento Lady Bug, & Hero Arts Tide Pool inks for this lightest layer. For the darker layer, I used Memento Cottage Ivy, Love Letter, & My Favorite Things Blu Raspberry inks. I stamped the base of each bulb with Memento London Fog & Gray Flannel, and silver heat embossed the filaments.

I die cut my tag with a "Nested Tags" die from Strathmore Mixed Media paper, and cut another from plain white cardstock as a backer. I inked the main tag with Shaded Lilac, Dusty Concord, Blueprint Sketch, & Chipped Sapphire Distress inks, and added a bit of Black Soot Distress ink around the edges for some drama. I spattered the tag with silver pearlescent watercolor. I glued on my bulbs, & used a silver paint pen to draw in the "cord." After I adhered the tag to the backer, I used metallic silver embroidery floss to tie on 3 small silver jingle bells at the top.

My second tag was inspired by Carol Mayne's penguin tags on Day 1. I printed Sweet 'n Sassy Stamps' "Festive Penguin" digital image onto a piece of Canson XL watercolor paper, and painted it with my watercolors. I die cut it with a scalloped circle die, & used another die 2 sizes larger to cut 2 green scalloped circles. I glued the green circles together for greater stability, & then glued the image circle on top. I punched a hole with a 1/8" hole punch, and threaded through a length of baker's twine.

 The inspiration for my 3rd tag came from Ardyth Percy-Robb's tag on Day 3. I die cut the poinsettia bract & leaf pieces from red & green cardstock scraps with the Poppystamps "Blooming Poinsettia" dies. I used Aged Mahogany & Pine Needles Distress inks on finger sponge daubers to add shading to the pieces. After curling the petals & leaves by running them over my bone folder, I adhered the center of the smaller flower layer to the larger with a tiny glue dot. I used more glue dots to adhere the leaves to the flower.

I embossed a white die cut tag with one of the "Bloom" embossing folders (discontinued) from Lifestyle Crafts, and glued my flower to that. I added red organza ribbon, & tied it with metallic embroidery floss. Finally, I glued some gold sequins in the center of the poinsettia for some bling.

Kim Heggins' tag on Day 1 inspired my 4th tag. I printed the "Winter Birds Trio" digital image (discontinued) from Bugaboo Stamps onto a 1-1/2"-tall strip of Canson XL watercolor paper, and painted it with my watercolors. I die cut a tag from a patterned paper from my scrap stash, & another from mint cardstock to go on the back. After adhering them back-to-back, I die cut the bottom with one of the "Stitched Borders 3" dies from Pretty Pink Posh. I then adhered my image panel with ATG tape. I stamped the greeting, from Lawn Fawn's "Winter Sparrows" set, onto the same mint cardstock, & added that under my image panel. I decided the image panel blended in to the background at the top too much, so I added another strip of mint above it. I threaded some cream satin ribbon through the top hole, and that finished this tag.

This tag's inspiration came from Carol Mayne's elegant creations on Day 4. I heat embossed the Essentials by Ellen "Mondo Poinsettia" (discontinued) in gold on white cardstock, and cut it out with the coordinating die. I heat embossed my greeting, from Hero Arts' "Color Layering Christmas Tree" stamp set, with the same gold onto a panel of burgundy cardstock. I matted that with a gold foil patterned paper from my scrap stash, that I had backed with white cardstock for more stability. Finally, I glued on my poinsettia.

For my 6th & final tag, I used Karen Bull's tag on Day 13 for my inspiration. I stamped the truck & presents from Stampendous' "Truck Tidings" (discontinued) onto Canson XL watercolor paper. After I painted the images with watercolors, I cut them out with the coordinating dies. Because the truck die also cuts out the side window, before I removed the paper from the die, I added double-sided tape behind the window to keep it attached to the truck body. I used the same tape to adhere the presents "into" the truck bed.

I die cut an oval from blue cardstock with a We R Memory Keepers die, & added a strip of brown cardstock to the bottom for a dirt road. I positioned that in my MISTI, and stamped the greeting. I ran the oval through my die cutting machine again with the same die, to cut the overhanging piece of the brown strip. I glued the truck in place & added the oval to a red mat. Finally, I used my Crop-a-Dile II to punch a 1/8" hole & threaded through a length of red satin ribbon.

Wednesday, December 2, 2020

Deck the Halls


I got the inspiration for this card from this one I saw on Pinterest. I have the same snowflake die, from Spellbinders' "2013 Snowflake Pendant" set (discontinued), so figured this would be a perfect time to use it.

I began by die cutting the snowflake from a paper from The Paper Studio's "Christmas Basics" 6x6" patterned paper pad. I positioned that panel onto a piece of white cardstock that I'd cut to the same size, & lightly traced the opening with a pencil, to guide my stamping.

I placed the panel in my MISTI stamp positioning tool, and used the penciled guidelines to place the jingle bell stamp from Sunny Studio Stamps' "Holiday Style" set. I stamped the different layers to build up what is a really realistic image. I used Memento London Fog ink for the base layer, and Hero Arts Charcoal & Black inks for the subsequent two layers. I also used London Fog for the hanger. I stamped the branch image from the same set multiple times across the top of the panel with Lawn Fawn's Noble Fir ink. Finally, I used a silver paint pen to draw a hook from the bell hanger to the branch.

I added my snowflake die cut panel to the white panel with foam tape. I mounted that to a green mat, and adhered my card front to a white A2-size card base. For the greeting, I used Lawn Fawn's "Deck the Halls" stamp set. I stamped it on a white strip with Noble Fir ink, and adhered that to my card.

I'm entering this card in the following challenges:

Ink Smooshed Season's Greetings


I recently made several cards for Send a Smile 4 Kids. One type they are always looking for is teen cards. I thought the rough-and-tumble look of this would make a good one for a teenager. I got my inspiration for this card from this one I saw on Pinterest.

I began with the ink smooshing on the background, using Picked Raspberry, Mustard Seed, & Peacock Feathers Distress Oxide inks. I pressed the ink pads--one color at a time--onto my non-stick craft mat, and spritzed lightly with water. I picked up the ink with a piece of clear plastic sheet protector, and pounced it onto a panel of 140 lb. watercolor paper. I focused the inks mostly around the edges, leaving the center more white with just a few splotches. After I finished with each color, I dried the panel, so the colors wouldn't get muddy.

Once I had finished the ink smooshing, I used a few stamps from My Favorite Things' "Sophisticated Snowflake" set (discontinued) to stamp with the same colors of Oxide inks. Some of the snowflakes I spritzed with a bit of water after stamping, and a few I stamped on the paper after I dampened it a bit, so they would melt into the background somewhat. Others, I stamped on dry paper & left them alone for a crisper feel.

I use Simon Says Stamp's "Season's Greetings" die--and oldie but a goodie--for the greeting. I die cut it from green shimmer cardstock, and a few times from white cardstock. To help me get the words positioned correctly, I also used the die to make an impression in my background panel. For that, I just positioned the die on my panel, & ran it through my die cutting machine with a light pressure setting, so it didn't cut through. I glued the first white die cut onto that impression, and glued the rest to that, stacking each one to make a thicker greeting. Finally, I glued on the green die cut. I even layered the apostrophe & tittle! Finally, I matted the panel with dark green cardstock, and added it to a white A2-size card base.

I'm entering this card in the following challenges:

Friday, November 13, 2020

Jingle All the Way


The November Sketch challenge at Christmas Card Throwdown inspired the design for my card.

One of the challenges for this year's Falliday Fest event at is "Let it Snow in Technicolor." Basically, use snowflakes on a holiday/winter card, and make them any color(s) BUT white. I had a technique piece that I'd done in a class at a recent online retreat. It didn't turn out exactly right, but I saved it, because it was still a pretty, colorful background. So I decided it would be perfect, paired with the Black Magic technique, to make Technicolor snowflakes!

I clear heat embossed several snowflakes on my panel, using My Favorite Things' "Sophisticated Snowflake" stamp set (discontinued). Once the embossing had cooled, I blended Black Soot Distress Oxide ink over the whole panel. Because the panel surface was a bit slick, the ink coverage ended up pretty streaky, and a lot of the background color showed around the snowflakes. But, I figured I'd keep going, and tried coating the panel with black acrylic paint. Same streaky result. So I wiped off the paint, and applied more Black Soot ink, this time going direct-to-paper with my ink pad. Some of the background color still showed through, but I decided the contrast was close enough for jazz, and so just dried the panel with my heat tool. Finally, I wiped off the ink that was on top of the embossed snowflakes, to reveal the bright colors underneath.

I used one of the greetings from Hero Arts' "Merry Christmas Message" stamp set (discontinued). I triple-stamped it on a scrap of white cardstock with Hero Arts Tide Pool ink. (I thought that went well with the Peacock Feathers Distress Oxide ink I'd used on the original background.) I die cut that with a Waffle Flower "Nesting Squares" die, oriented to make a diamond. I die cut another slightly larger square, with an "Additional Squares" die (also from Waffle Flower), from the same white scrap, & inked it direct-to-paper with Tide Pool. I used that as a mat for my greeting.

I cut a panel of patterned paper, from Bo Bunny's "Candy Cane Lane" 6x6" paper pad, to 4-1/8x5-3/8". I adhered that to my white A2-sized card base, leaving a 1/16" mat on all sides. I cut my snowflake panel into 2 narrower strips, and adhered them in place. Finally, I glued on my greeting, using my T-square ruler to make sure I got it straight.

I'm also entering this card in 613 Avenue Create's November "Anything Goes" challenge (not playing the twist).

Thursday, November 5, 2020

Season's Greetings


The October technique challenge theme at Christmas Card Throwdown is "Fancy Folds." I decided to make a cascade card for my entry.

I found a tutorial by Beccy Muir through Pinterest for how to do this sort of card. I used a heavyweight cream cardstock for the card base, and patterned papers from The Paper Studio's "Happy Holidays" letter-size pad to decorate.

For my focal image, I die cut a circle from more of the cream cardstock. I stamped & die cut images from Lawn Fawn's "Deck the Halls" set, and glued them around the perimeter of the circle. I also used a holly leaf from WPlus9's "Be Merry Florals" (discontinued) & the bow from "Holiday Style" by Sunny Studio.

My initial idea was to have the greeting stamped directly on the circle base piece in the middle of the wreath. But I messed up the stamping, so I had to figure out another option. I used the "Season's Greetings" from Hero Arts' "Vintage Christmas Post" stamp set (discontinued) and one of the "Build a Banner" stamps by Avery Elle (discontinued). I first stamped the banner, then curved the greeting stamp to fit the curve of the banner & stamped it. Finally, I die cut the banner with the coordinating die.

I used an old Fiskars border punch to punch strips of blue cardstock. I figured the present theme of the punch went well for a holiday card. I trimmed the punched strips with my paper trimmer, leaving a 1/8" edge along the bottom. I glued each to the backs of my card folds, adding the glue to the front of the unpunched edge of the strips. I added one more strip along the bottom of the front, as per the tutorial instructions, and glued my wreath in place. I will add a panel to the back for the "inside" sentiment. This card was really easy to put together, thanks to Beccy's excellent tutorial!

Saturday, October 31, 2020

Meowy Christmas

Janis at Her Peaceful Garden has been hosting her annual Cat Lovers Hop this week. One of the options to participate is to create a cat-themed project. I created this Christmas card using the new "Christmas Tree Cat" stamp set, illustrated by Anita Jeram for Colorado Craft Company.

I double-stamped the image onto a panel of Strathmore Vellum Bristol paper with Simon Says Stamp's Fog ink. I wanted a no-line look, but still wanted faintly-visible lines to guide my coloring, hence my choice of ink. I used my Prismacolor pencils to color it. I colored the cat to look like our middle cat, Barney. I did have to refer to the stamp set's index sheet frequently to see what all the little bits & bobs on the tree were, so I knew how to color them.

After I finished coloring, I stamped the greeting in Versafine Clair Morning Mist ink. I chose this because it's a mid-tone cool grey, which complements the colors I used for the cat. I played around with placement a while, and finally decided to tuck it in next to the cat's head. It seems like that location was made for that greeting to nestle. Finally, I cut 2 narrow strips of red cardstock, adhered them to both sides of a white A2-size card base to frame my panel, & adhered the panel on top.

I'm also entering this card in the following challenges:

Friday, October 23, 2020

Merry Christmas Penguin


The current Christmas Card Throwdown challenge has the theme of "Winter Sweaters." I decided to pull out an old Hunkydory Crafts, Ltd. stamp set that I got in a papercrafting magazine a couple of years ago for my card. My design is from an old Operation Write Home sketch.

I began by stenciling the panel to go behind my image panel. I used the "Holiday Knit" stencil by Tim Holtz. I figured this reinforces the "sweater" theme even more! :) After I sprayed the back of the stencil with Krylon Easy Tack, I positioned it onto my cardstock piece. I used Worn Lipstick, Faded Jeans, & Bundled Sage Distress inks over the stencil. I masked adjacent sections of the design with yellow Frog tape as I went.

To tie into the theme yet again, I used a piece of Lawn Fawn's Knit Picky 6x6" patterned paper--a freebie I received with an order--as the background of my card. I cut it to 4x5-1/2", & adhered it to a white A2-sized card base. I layered a piece of sage green cardstock from my scrap stash over that. I matted my knit-stenciled panel with a narrow black mat, and adhered that in place.

I stamped the reindeer antlers head piece first on my Strathmore Smooth Bristol paper panel, then masked it. I stamped the penguin on that panel, and stamped the sweater on another scrap of bristol. I colored the images with my Tombow markers, using the blender pen to add highlighting. Finally, I fussy cut the sweater, "painted" the edges with a black marker to hide the paper's white core, & glued it over my penguin.

I chose a greeting from the same stamp set, & stamped it in black on a strip of light blue cardstock. After I matted that in black, I added 3 Bottle Green Nuvo Crystal Drops to the one end. I let that dry overnight, before adhering that & my image panel to my card.

I'm also entering this card in the following challenges: