Thursday, December 29, 2016

Happy Hanukkah


Die Cut Divas' challenge this month is "Layers or Layer It." I created another Hanukkah card for this challenge. The woman I'm giving this card to is blind, so I wanted layers & texture, so she can get a tactile experience from the card.

I cut the Star of David from chipboard, using a template I'd made. After coating it with gesso, I painted it with a Ranger Adirondack Silver paint dauber. I let that dry, and then used the Tim Holtz "Dot Fade" stencil & Golden Extra Heavy Gel (matte finish) to add some texture. Then I set that aside to dry for a few hours.

Once the gel had dried, I cut pieces of silver wire. I taped one end on the back of my star, threaded some seed beads on, and then wrapped the other end around to the back of my star & taped it in place. I repeated this until I had several beaded wires. I adjusted the beads, so they were in smaller groups along each wire, and used dots of Glossy Accents to hold the groups in place.

I die cut a dark blue panel with the largest "Decorative Labels One" die by Spellbinders, and glued my Star of David to that with Perfect Paper Adhesive. I also die cut a greeting strip using one of Pretty Pink Posh's "Stitched Borders 3" dies. I stamped "Happy Hanukkah" on that in Versamark, using the "Basic Alpha" set from Ellen Hutson's Essentials by Ellen line. Then I heat embossed that in Ranger Silver embossing powder.

To finish my card, I cut a panel of silver embossed paper from Michael's to 4.25x5.5". I adhered my greeting strip & Star of David panel to that, and mounted my card front to a white A2 card base.

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

Simon Says Stamp Wednesday: "Anything Goes"
Simon Says Stamp Work It Wednesday: "Use Dies"
Pile It On #123: "Any Holiday/Celebration"
Through the Craft Room Door: "Anything Goes"

Wednesday, December 28, 2016

Happy Hanukkah


The Lawnscaping Challenge is coming to an end today. It's been going for 5 years, but this is their last challenge. The theme this time is "Holiday Cards." I need a couple of Hanukkah cards, so I created this one for this challenge. I got the idea for the stamping from this video by Yana Smakula.

I have a Star of David template that I'd created for another card a couple of months ago. I traced around it onto a piece of masking paper, and enlarged my tracing slightly before cutting it out with a craft knife. I cut a piece of white cardstock to 4.25x5.5", and adhered the negative portion of my mask to that, centered side-to-side. I stamped snowflake & heart images from "Winter in the Park," "Deck the Halls," & "Peace Joy Love" (all by Lawn Fawn) to stamp inside the opening in my mask. I used Hero Arts Soft Pool, Tide Pool, & Pool inks, as well as Delicata Silvery Shimmer pigment ink for my images. I heat embossed the silver ones with Recollections Clear Detail embossing powder. To make the Star of David stand out even more, after I'd finished stamping & heat embossing, I inked lightly with Broken China Distress ink. Then I removed my mask.

For the greeting, I used Lawn Fawn's "Claire's ABC's" & my MISTI to stamp with Versamark. I heat embossed that with Ranger Silver embossing powder.

To finish, I inked a scrap of white cardstock with Pool ink, and cut two 1/8" strips. I glued those to either side of the card front, and adhered the card to a white A2 card base.

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

Through the Craft Room Door: "Anything Goes"
Pile It On #123: "Any Holiday/Celebration"

Thursday, December 15, 2016

Wonderful Holiday Wishes


A friend of mine always does a painting of a poinsettia for her Christmas card. When I saw the card Nina-Marie Trapani created for Simon Says Stamp's Studio Monday this week, I knew I had to try something similar! I used 2 stamp sets: "Mondo Poinsettia" for the flower and "Mistletoe & Holly" for the greeting (both Essentials by Ellen).

I began by determining where I wanted my greeting to go, so I would be sure not to stamp any flowers there. I stamped it very lightly on my A2-size panel with Colorbox Putty Archival ink, just to act as a placeholder, since I wasn't really sure whether I wanted just to stamp or heat emboss the greeting. I then stamped the poinsettia randomly around my panel with Hero Arts Red Royal ink, being careful not to overlap the greeting.

After I'd finished stamping, I used masking fluid to mask each flower. I wanted to do an ink-blended background, and considered using paper masks for the poinsettias. But I could tell it would be impossible to cut around all the details towards the center of each flower, so there were no gaps. I was reticent to use masking fluid, since I have kind of a bad history with it. But I figured I'd give it a try anyway.

After applying it to all the flowers, I let it dry for a few hours while I did other things. When I came back to it, I blended Cracked Pistachio, Evergreen Bough, & Pine Needles Distress inks over the background to create an ombre effect. I then ever-so-carefully removed the masking. Thankfully, it did not rip my paper up! Then I watercolored my flowers with a Zig Clean Color Real Brush Marker (Carmine Red). I used a damp paintbrush to spread & blend the color on each petal. I also colored the flower centers with a gold gel pen. Then, just for a little more pop, I flicked droplets of Heidi Swapp Gold Color Shine mist over the panel.

When the panel was dry, I used the coordinating "Mondo Poinsettia" die to cut each flower from the panel. I blended the same 3 Distress inks onto another panel, cut to the same size as my first, and glued the negative portion of my original panel to that. Before adhering my poinsettias back in place, I went ahead and heat embossed the greeting with Ranger Super Fine Detail Gold embossing powder. Finally, I adhered my poinsettias into their original positions, popping them up on foam tape. After mounting it to a white A2 card base, I added drops of Gold Stickles to the centers of the flowers, and this card was done!

I'm entering my card in the following challenges:

Through the Craft Room Door "Anything Goes"
Craft Your Passion #342 "Anything Goes"
Pile It On #123 "Any Holiday/Celebration"
Die Cut Divas "Layers or Layer It"
Simon Says Stamp Work It Wednesday "Use Dies"
Creative Knockouts #172 "Winter Wonderland/Festive Fun"

Wednesday, November 30, 2016

Two Christmas Cards


I'm getting down to the finish line on our holiday cards--FINALLY!!!! These are 2 more that I made.

For my first, I took inspiration from one of Debby Hughes' lessons from Online Card Classes' "Holiday Card Workshop 2014." (OCC is not having a holiday card class this year, so I pulled this one out of my vault.) I die cut a tag from 140 lb. watercolor paper with Pretty Pink Posh's "Stitched Duo 3" die. I stamped the greeting, from "Very Merry Christmas," (apparently retired) and a crystal from "Christmas Crystals" (both Hero Arts sets) in Versamark onto the tag, and heat embossed with Ranger Liquid Platinum. I also added a line from the top of the crystal to the "M" with a fine-tip glue pen, and heat embossed that. I wet the tag with plain water, and used it to soak up Festive Berries Distress ink, which I'd applied to an acrylic block and watered down. I was going for a "dyed" look, but may have gotten a little carried away with the ink. I think it still looks good, though! :)

I created a tag reinforcer by punching some red cardstock with a 1/2" circle punch. I glued that to my tag, let the glue dry, and punched through both layers with a 1/4" hole punch. I backed my tag with fun foam, to give some dimension.

For the background, I cut a mat from white cardstock, and inked around the perimeter with Festive Berries. I let that dry, then adhered a piece of patterned paper from my scrap stash. I had rounded the patterned paper's corner with the 1/2" side of my Corner Chomper, to mimic the curve of the tag and give that area a bit more finished look. I adhered my tag, and mounted the card front to a white A2 card base. Finally, I rounded the upper corner of the base/mat.


I used Sketch #SC571 from Splitcoaststampers.com for my second card design. I printed the "Gingerbread House" digi image from Jane's Doodles onto a piece of Canson XL Mixed Media Paper, and colored it with my Prismacolor colored pencils. I fussy cut the image, and glued it to a piece of blue cardstock. I used a white gel pen to add dots to the background.

For the Polaroid look, I cut a piece of white cardstock to the size in the sketch. I also cut a piece of black cardstock, and layered it behind the white, slightly offset, to give a shadow look. I stamped my greeting, from Lawn Fawn's "Deck the Halls" set with Colorbox Chestnut Roan chalk ink. I added another piece of black behind my focal image, and then adhered that to the white mat.

I cut a piece of kraft cardstock to 4.25x5.5", and inked around the edges with Tea Dye & Gathered Twigs Distress inks. I wanted to give a "slightly-burned gingerbread" look to the background. I adhered my main panel to the background, added some striped washi tape pieces to create the look of a taped-up photo, and mounted it to a white A2 card base. I added a bit of sparkle to the gumdrops with my clear Wink of Stella pen, and Diamond Stickles to the frosting on the roof, chimney, & trees.

Wednesday, November 23, 2016

Blessings


I am so happy with how this card turned out! I got the "Stain Glass Nativity" stamp from Hero Arts (discontinued) at Michael's last year, and had never inked it up. I was going through my holiday stamps recently--again--and came across this one. I decided it was finally time to make it into a card.

I stamped the image with Versafine Onyx Black ink onto a piece of Strathmore Smooth Bristol paper, and heat embossed it with Recollections Clear Detail embossing powder. Then I colored it with my Zig Clean Color Real Brush Markers. I did do a tiny bit of shading on the faces, but otherwise kept the colors flat, to mimic the look of stained glass. When I finished coloring, I fussy cut the window out.

Then--what to do for a design??? I knew I wanted to keep it simple, to let the image shine, but I wasn't sure exactly what direction to take. So I pulled out a white A2 card base, just to see what sort of area I had to work with. I do this sometimes, since it helps me visualize the space better.

I decided to use Simon Says Stamp's "Christmas Blessings" die for the greeting. I backed gold glitter paper with black fun foam that I'd applied Stick It adhesive to. I applied more Stick It to the other side of the foam, and die cut the words. In the end, I felt like the "Christmas" was just crowding the design. It also seemed kind of redundant anyway, since the image is a nativity scene. So I left off the "Christmas" word, and just kept "Blessings."

I cut a piece of dark blue cardstock to 4.25x5.5". I wanted there to be kind of a glow around the window, so I inked around the perimeter of my cardstock with Chipped Sapphire Distress ink. I followed that with Black Soot Distress ink, to increase the contrast even more. I adhered my window to the panel, and put my greeting below it. Finally, I mounted the panel to my white card base.

I'm entering this card in A Blog Named Hero's November Challenge: "Holiday Themed."

Tuesday, November 22, 2016

Merry Mice


I'm furiously working to get holiday cards done. I've finished probably 2/3 of them at least, but I am still working. Of course, it's now bordering on an obsession/compulsion, so I may not quit even after I finish. 😊 When I showed this one to my mom yesterday, she took one look & just burst out laughing at these cute little mice! Hopefully it will do that to whoever receives it, too.

I chose Sketch #SC585 from Splitcoaststampers.com for my design. I stamped the "Bow Tied" image (apparently discontinued) from Stampendous in Hero Arts Wet Cement ink onto a piece of Canson XL Mixed Media paper. I colored it with my Inktense pencils, using a damp paintbrush to pull the color off the pencil leads and apply it to my paper. I went over each mouse a few times, to get the shading just right. I also added in a sky & grass. I know, usually holiday scenes have snow, but here in Texas, it's usually greenish grass even this time of year! After I finished the painting, I added the facial features back in with a black fine-tip pen. When I did the mouth on the right mouse, the pen slipped, and made a bit of a mess that I could not fix! I was frantically trying to figure out what to do short of starting over. I finally ended up painting a thin coat of gesso over the face, and repainting with the Inktense pigment. I wasn't sure if the color would even stick to the gesso, but I figured at that point I had nothing to lose. I'm happy to report that it worked! I was a lot more careful when I drew the mouth in the second time! I did use a black glaze pen & white gel pen to highlight the eyes on the middle & right mice. Once the panel had dried completely, I went over the bows with the clear Spectrum Noir Sparkle Overlay pen.

I cut 2 pieces of patterned paper from my scrap stash for the bottom panels. For the greeting, I used one from Lawn Fawn's "Peace Joy Love" stamp set. First I cut a 1/2" wide strip of blue cardstock. I wasn't sure what color of ink I wanted to use, so I started with Hero Arts Charcoal ink. I didn't think it looked especially good, though. So, without removing the strip or the stamp from my MISTI, I stamped over the greeting with Memento Danube Blue dye ink. This has got to be one of the best features of the MISTI--the ability to save you from having to cut more paper and restamp!

To finish the card, I adhered my patterned paper pieces & image panel to a piece of dark green cardstock I'd cut to 4.25x5.5", leaving a 1/8" border on all sides. I glued my greeting strip in place, and mounted the card front to a white A2 card base.

I'm entering this card in the following challenges:

Simon Says Stamp's Wednesday challenge: "Christmas Critters"
Simon Says Stamp's Monday challenge: "Trio-Tastic" (I do have 3 mice! 😍)

Saturday, November 19, 2016

Fleas on Earth


I haven't entered a challenge at Catch the Bug Challenge Blog for a long time now. We have sent a Petsmart gift card to Northeast Animal Shelter every year for Christmas, and I always try to come up with a unique card to put it in. I saw the current sketch for the Stella Says Sketch challenge, and a light bulb went on! I decided to group 3 animal digi stamps from Bugaboo Stamps ("Christmas Mouse - Ornaments," "Meowy Christmas Cats," & "Rottweiler Puppy - Pile of Bones") on the focal panel to create a cute holiday card.


I opened up all three images in Photoshop, & created a blank "canvas" the size of my focal panel. I sized & placed my images onto the canvas, overlapping them to create a cohesive grouping. Because the puppy isn't really a holiday image per se, I decided to put a Santa hat on him. Not having a hat image, I downloaded one off the Internet, and used the pencil tool in Photoshop to trace around the hat. That gave me just the outline image, rather than the full-color graphic that I had downloaded. I positioned the hat on the puppy's head, and digitally erased the portion of his head that would be under the hat. Finally, I printed the image on a piece of Canson XL Mixed Media paper.

I used my Inktense pencils & a damp paintbrush to color the animals and their accessories. I also added a bit of shading to the bones, and some grey underneath the animals to ground them.

For the greeting, I pulled inspiration from a Hampton Art stamp set I have. It has a stamp that says "Fleas on Earth," but it is on two lines & I wanted a one-line greeting. There was no way to cut the stamp to have all the words on one line, & I decided trying to mask it and get the words to line up would be too difficult. So I got out my Lawn Fawn "Claire's ABC's" set, and used the letters to spell out the greeting. I stamped that onto a strip of green cardstock in Versamark ink, and heat embossed it with Ranger Super Fine Detail White embossing powder.

To assemble my card, I cut three different patterns from "Christmas Basics" & "A Very Merry Christmas" 6x6" pads, both from The Paper Studio. I especially like the cardinal pattern, since it helps tie in the animal theme of my card. I adhered them to an A2 size panel of blue cardstock. I punched a border strip from the same green cardstock I'd used for the greeting, using Fiskars' "Scallop Sentiment" punch. I glued that to the back of the focal panel, so just a bit peeks out from the bottom, and then adhered my focal panel in place. I adhered my greeting strip, and finally mounted the card front to a white card base.

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

Simon Says Stamp's Wednesday "Christmas Critters" challenge
Through the Craft Room Door: "Anything Goes"
Doodle Pantry Ants in My Pantry Digital Challenge: "Anything Goes"

Holly Card


I decided to create one more card for the "Sketch It Out" challenge at Incy Wincy Designs. This time, I used the holly stamp from the "Christmas Blueprints 4" set by Stampers Anonymous for my focal image. Again, instead of a square card like the sketch, I made mine an A2 size card.


I decided to use a technique I'd seen Jennifer McGuire demonstrate in a video maybe a year or two ago. I stamped the holly onto a piece of 140 lb. watercolor paper 3 times: once for the whole image, once for just the berries, and a third time for a couple of leaves. I heat embossed all three images with Ranger Super Fine Detail Gold embossing powder. When that had cooled, I applied Distress inks in Candied Apple for the berries, and Pine Needles & Lucky Clover for the 2 leaf images, using the direct-to-paper technique. Then I spritzed them generously with my homemade Perfect Pearls mist, and dried them with my heat tool. Once the ink was dry, I fussy-cut the pieces.

I layered the 2 smaller leaves over the corresponding areas on the leaves I'd colored with the Pine Needles ink. I used foam tape in the middle of each leaf, and adhered the ends flat, to give a bit of interest. I popped the berries up on foam tape, and then adhered the holly to a square of blue cardstock I'd cut with a My Favorite Things "Pinking Edge Square" die.

For the layers on my card front, I used patterned papers from Authentique's "Believe," The Paper Studio's "Old World Winter," & Graphic 45's "Christmas Carol" 6x6" pads. I cut the pieces to size and adhered them in place on my card base, tucking my focal panel under the upper triangle piece. And that finished this card. I really like the pearlized shimmer that I achieved on the holly. It doesn't photograph well, but it's a nice, subtle touch in real life.

Friday, November 18, 2016

Soft Snowman


Incy Wincy Designs' current challenge theme is "Sketch It Out." The design they provided is for a square card, but I altered it slightly to make it a portrait-oriented A2 card.

I stamped my image from a Penny Black set (name unknown) onto a piece of white cardstock, and die cut the panel with a DoCrafts Xcut "Scalloped Square" die. I colored the snowman with colored pencils, using a bit of Gamsol on a paper stump to blend the subtle shading for the snowman's body & head. I felt the panel needed a little something more, though, so I lightly blended Tumbled Glass Distress ink in the upper portion, and Hickory Smoke ink around the lower edges.

Once I had my focal panel done, it was time to decorate the card front. I cut several patterned papers, from both the "Dear Santa" 6x6" pad from BoBunny, and The Paper Studio's "A Very Merry Christmas" 6x6" pad. I also cut a panel of light blue cardstock to layer behind the focal panel. I adhered my base layers to a white A2 card base, and then adhered the additional pieces in place on top. Finally, I glued down my focal panel, and this card was done!

I'm also entering this card in Through the Craft Room Door's "Anything Goes" challenge.

Tuesday, November 15, 2016

Ombre Joy


Today is the final day for Hero Arts' Holiday Cardmaking Challenge. So I made one final card, using the "Joy Burst" stamp from Hero Arts.

I got the idea for the coloring on my focal panel from somewhere on the Internet, but unfortunately can't remember where I saw the card! I did use Operation Write Home's Sketch #258 for my design, though. I stamped the image onto a piece of Strathmore Smooth Bristol paper with Versamark ink, then heat embossed it with Ranger Liquid Platinum embossing powder. I took 2 blue Zig Clean Color markers, and colored the darker one at the bottoms of the letters. I blended that out with the lighter marker, and finally used a water brush to blend out to the lightest shade at the top of each letter. I left the rest of the image plain, to make sure the letters are the star of the show. After the color dried, I die cut it with the largest of Spellbinders' "Classic Ovals LG" dies.

I used the same die to trace an oval onto navy blue cardstock and cut that out with scissors to create a mat for my focal panel. I embossed a panel of light blue cardstock with the "Snowflake" embossing folder from Darice. Then I used 3 patterned papers from my scrap stash to cut the banners, and adhered all my elements to the background. Finally, I used Perfect Paper Adhesive to glue down 3 buttons in a cluster. When the glue had dried, I used silver embroidery floss to stitch through the buttonholes. I adhered my completed card front to a white A2 card base, and I now have another holiday card for my stash!

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

A Blog Named Hero "Holiday Themed"
a2z Scrapbooking's November Challenge: "Embellishment"

Monday, November 14, 2016

Non-traditional Wreath


I've been drawn lately to more non-traditional color schemes for holiday cards, at least for some. For this one, I decided to go with purple, teal, green, & pink.

I began by stamping Hero Arts' "Color a Wreath" image onto a piece of Strathmore Smooth Bristol paper with Delicata Silvery Shimmer ink. I used that paper because I wanted to color with my Zig Clean Color pens, which I've found blend best on the bristol. I heat embossed the wreath with Recollections Clear Detail embossing powder, and colored the baubles and bow with my Zigs. I did use a water brush to help spread the color and provide some shading. I let that dry, then die cut it with a Spellbinders "Standard Circles SM" die.

For the background, I used Hero Arts' "Capture Prism" background stamp, & a technique I saw Kristina Werner demonstrate recently. With the stamp in my MISTI, I inked the top portion with Hero Arts Bubble Gum ink. I dabbed off a bit of the ink along the bottom edge with a dry rag, to give a soft edge, and stamped it onto a piece of white cardstock. Without moving the stamp or my paper, I inked up the next portion with Hero Arts Soft Lilac, dabbed the top & bottom edges with my rag, and stamped so that the purple overlapped the pink a bit. I did the same procedure with Hero Arts Soft Pool & Lime Green inks to finish my panel. I really like the soft gradient this gives.

After cutting a mat from pale blue glitter paper with the largest of Spellbinders' "Standard Circles LG" dies, I glued my wreath circle to that. I assembled my card, following Sketch #SC572 from Splitcoaststampers.com. I added strips of silver glitter paper & pink cardstock behind the circle, & adhered the stamped panel to a pale blue mat, leaving a 1/16" border. Finally, I mounted the card front to a white A2 card base, and added some clear Spectrum Noir Sparkle pen to the larger baubles on the wreath.

I'm entering this card in the following challenges:

Hero Arts "Holiday Cardmaking" challenge
A Blog Named Hero's November challenge: "Holiday Theme"
Through the Craft Room Door: "Anything Goes"

Sunday, November 13, 2016

Season's Greetings


Hero Arts is having a holiday cards challenge. There are only 2 requirements: it has to be a holiday card (obviously), and it needs to use one or more Hero Arts products. I created this card with the "Color Layering Cardinal" & "Vintage Christmas Post" stamp sets.

I used Sketch #SC590 from Splitcoaststampers.com for my design--with a twist. Instead of having the circle element be a layer, I die cut it from my card front to make the rest a frame.

For the cardinal, I used Hero Arts Fresh Peach ink for the base layer, Hero Arts Pale Tomato for the middle layer, Memento Rhubarb Stalk for the top, and Memento Gray Flannel for the "black" accents on the face & eye. I also used Rhubarb Stalk for the feet. When I had finished the stamping, I die cut the body & feet with the coordinating dies.

I stamped the branch with Gray Flannel first, then inked up the stamp with Hero Arts Cup o' Joe, and dabbed off the ink in some spots with a rag. Then I stamped the branch again, right over the first impression, to give it some subtle shading. I used my MISTI stamp positioner tool, which is invaluable for a technique like this, especially on such a small & relatively detailed stamp. Then I die cut my branch.

To create my card front, I cut a piece of pale blue cardstock to 4.25x5.5". I cut a strip of patterned paper from my scrap stash for the bottom, and a strip of white cardstock for the greeting. After adhering both strips to the blue, I positioned my die (Spellbinders "Standard Circles LG") onto the panel, just to check for where to stamp my greeting. Then I stamped the greeting, from "Vintage Christmas Post," in Gray Flannel ink. Finally, I die cut the circle from the panel.

I cut another A2 size panel of the blue cardstock, and traced the circle from my front panel onto that. I lightly erased the pencil line, so it was still visible, but faint. Then I inked up the top part of the panel that would show through the circle with Broken China & Peacock Feathers Distress inks, fading the Broken China out towards the bottom so the pale blue showed.

When I placed my bird & branch on the background, I decided it needed something more underneath, because the space was just a bit too bare. So I stamped and die cut the 2 smaller branches and several pine needles from "Color Layering Cardinal." I glued all my elements in place with Perfect Paper Adhesive. After adding my card front with foam tape, I mounted the panel to a white A2 card base. As a finishing touch, I added some black glaze pen to the cardinal's eye, and, when that had dried, added a catch light with a white gel pen.

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

A Blog Named Hero November Challenge: "Holiday"
Craft Your Passion Challenges: "Anything Goes"
Through the Craft Room Door: "Anything Goes"

Sunday, November 6, 2016

Chickadee Holiday

The current challenge at Our Daily Bread Designs is a color challenge. I used the purple, blue, red, & brown from the inspiration palette.


I stamped the "Chickadee" from ODBD onto a piece of 140 lb. watercolor paper with Hero Arts Soft Granite ink. I die cut it with the largest of the "Floral Ovals" by Spellbinders, and colored the image with my Inktense pencils, using a damp paintbrush to pick up the color & blend it on the paper. (This is my preferred way of working with Inktense pencils, as I find it gives me the most control.) After I'd finished coloring, I added the eye back in with a Sakura black glaze pen, and added a highlight with a white gel pen. Then I placed the die cut back into the die, and used a sponge dauber to blend on Tumbled Glass Distress ink for a sky, leaving a halo of white around the image.

For the background, I first cut a panel of watercolor paper to A2 size, and applied a coat of gesso to the whole panel. When the gesso had dried, I stamped the "Small Snowflakes" background from ODBD (discontinued) in Versamark, and heat embossed it with Recollections Clear Detail embossing powder. Then I scribbled blue & purple metallic gelatos over the background, and blended them with my finger. I finished the background by buffing the color off the embossing with a very slightly damp paper towel. I used Perfect Paper Adhesive to glue my focal panel to the background.

Unfortunately, I discovered that gelatos take a LOOONG time to dry! I suppose especially when you apply them over a gessoed background. So when I later checked on my card, the focal panel popped right off. :( I remedied the situation by using a baby wipe to wipe the color off the background, just behind the solid part of the die cut. Then I reglued my oval on, and set an acrylic block on top until the glue dried. I was contemplating spraying the card front with a matte varnish, but didn't want to lose the sheen of the gelatos. Thankfully, after a day or two, the gelatos had dried sufficiently that the color didn't rub off! I used a fine-tip applicator bottle to squirt tiny dabs of glue under the detailed edges of the die cut, and set that under an acrylic block to dry, which it thankfully did. Crisis averted! :) I finished my card by adhering my card front to a white A2 card base, and rounding the corners with my 1/2" Corner Chomper.

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

Craft Your Passion #336: "Anything Goes"
Through the Craft Room Door 2nd Annual Blog Hop

Monday, October 31, 2016

Be Merry


This is yet another card I did for Splitcoaststampers' Falliday Fest. The challenge was to make a card with an owl. I've had Hero Arts' "Curious Owl" stamp for at least a few years now, and I just get a hoot out of the expression on his face! Did you catch the pun there? :) I thought, since I'm in holiday card mode, it would be fun to put a Santa hat on him. He just has this "Good grief" expression--it seemed like a perfect combination! LOL

I stamped my owl onto a scrap of 140 lb. watercolor paper, with Hero Arts Cup o' Joe ink. I colored him with my Inktense pencils, using a damp paintbrush to pick up & blend the color. When I finished, I let him dry, then fussy cut him out. I glued him to a red oval I'd cut with a Spellbinders "Classic Ovals SM" die. I also went over his pupils with a black glaze pen, and when that had dried, I added catch lights with a white gel pen, just to make his eyes pop.

I cut strips of patterned paper (from my scrap stash), and adhered them to a red card front, leaving a 1/8" mat on all sides. I stamped my greeting, from My Favorite Things' "Joyous Christmas Sentiments," in Versafine Onyx Black ink onto the dotted patterned paper. I figured, with such bold letters, it would stand out on the patterned paper, especially stamped in black. So I didn't bother adding another layer for the greeting. I then adhered my owl oval in place.

For the Santa hat, I just freehand cut one from red felt. I had to do a bit of fiddling to get the sizing right. I cut a brim from white felt, and glued it to the red with fabric glue. I glued the hat to my card, and added a white pompom, using fabric glue for everything to make sure it would stay stuck. I laid some acrylic blocks on top, to hold it down while the glue dried. After everything had dried for a few hours, I adhered the card front to a white A2 card base. I really love how this turned out, and hopefully whoever gets it will too! :)

I'm entering this card in the following challenges:

Simon Says Stamp Wednesday "Anything Goes"
a2z Scrapbooking's October Challenge: "Layer It"
Aud Sentiments: "Cute + a Sentiment"

Joy


This is another card I did for Falliday Fest at Splitcoaststampers.com. The theme was "Blue Christmas." I used Hero Arts' "Joy to the World" stamp set for the triangles, and My Favorite Things' "Joyous Christmas Sentiments" for the greeting.

I started by stamping my background. I traced a 4" circle onto a piece of 140 lb. watercolor paper. Using a hexagon template I got online & my MISTI, I stamped the triangle 6 times around the circle in Versamark. Then I heat embossed those with Ranger Silver embossing powder. I inked the circle with Faded Jeans Distress ink (in the center), and going out to Blueprint Sketch, & Chipped Sapphire around the edge. I used a water brush to "paint" some of the smaller triangles with plain water, and blotted up the water/ink to bleach the areas, just for some added interest.

For the greeting, I stamped the "Joy" onto another scrap of watercolor paper, and heat embossed it. I die cut that with a Spellbinders "Standard Circles LG" die, and inked it with Faded Jeans. I went around the edges with Blueprint Sketch, just to help tie it in with the background. I then popped it up over the center of my background. I die cut a silver shimmer paper mat with a "Nesting Scallop" die from Lifestyle Crafts, and adhered my inked circle to that. I die cut another scalloped circle, scored 1/2" from one edge, and adhered the top to the back of my card front to create the card base.

I'm entering my card in the following challenges:

a2z Scrapbooking's October Challenge: "Layer It"
Die Cut Divas "October is the Time to Emboss"

Sunday, October 30, 2016

Peace Cardinal


The past couple of weeks, I've been participating in Splitcoaststampers.com's Falliday Fest. It's a series of 30 card challenges & 10 tutorials, and has been a lot of fun. This is one of the cards I created for that.

I recently got Hero Arts' "Color Layering Cardinal" stamp set & dies. We had a friend some years ago who loved cardinals, and I guess she passed that love on to me. So when I saw this stamp set, I knew I had to have it!

For this card, I stamped the cardinal on white cardstock, using Hero Arts Fresh Peach ink for the base layer, and Memento Lady Bug & Rhubarb Stalk for the second and third layers, respectively. I stamped the face & eye in Versafine Onyx Black, and the feet in Rhubarb Stalk. I must say, not having much experience with color layering stamps, this one is not too hard to work with. The only part I messed up was the black, and mostly because I wasn't sure what to line it up with. Thankfully, I had stamped 3 birds, so I just "ignored" the one I messed up! :) After I'd finished stamping, I die cut the body & legs with the coordinating dies, and added a bit of white gel pen to emphasize the highlight in the eye.

To create the sky area, I blended Distress inks in Stormy Sky, Faded Jeans, & Chipped Sapphire onto a panel of Strathmore Smooth Bristol paper. I spritzed the panel with water from my Distress Sprayer, let it sit for several seconds, and blotted up the water. I dried that, inked over it again, & repeated the water "bleaching" process. I really like the effect doing this twice gave. I think it really adds more depth than just inking and bleaching once.

I cut a piece of white cardstock to A2 size, and die cut an oval from the center with the smallest of Spellbinders' "Grand Ovals Nestabilities" (no longer available) Then I ran it through my die cutting machine again, with the "Snowflakes" embossing folder from Darice.

For the greeting, I stamped the "peace" from the same stamp set in Rhubarb Stalk, and die cut it with one of the "Labels" dies from Sizzix/Tim Holtz. I inked the edges with Stormy Sky. I stamped & die cut the berry & small pine needle images with Memento Lady Bug & Cottage Ivy inks, and die cut them as well. I layered those behind the greeting, and added foam tape to the back.

I marked the position of the oval on my inked background, and used that as a guide to stamp the branch in Hero Arts Cup o' Joe ink. I adhered my frame to the background, and glued the cardinal on top, "sitting" on the branch. Finally, I added my greeting, and mounted the card front to a white A2 card base.

I'm entering this card in the following challenges:

a2z Scrapbooking's October Challenge: "Layer It"
Die Cut Divas "October is the Time to Emboss"

Monday, October 17, 2016

Thoughts and Prayers

My mom recently learned that a member of her writers group passed away. So she asked me to make a sympathy card that the other members could sign to send to his widow.

I decided to do a white-on-white card. I cut a piece of white cardstock, and embossed it with a Cuttlebug embossing folder. (Sorry, but it's not labeled & I don't know the name.) I then machine stitched around the perimeter with white thread.

For my greeting, I stamped the prayers & 2 coordinating greetings from Hero Arts' "Prayers" stamp & cut set onto vellum, using Versamark ink. I then heat embossed it with Ranger Silver embossing powder. I trimmed the vellum into a strip, and adhered the ends to the back of my dry-embossed panel.

I cut another piece of white cardstock to slightly smaller than A9 size. I used a Prima stencil (name unknown) and Golden Light Molding Paste to create a pattern at the top right & lower left corners. I let the paste layer kind of fade out, by leaving the edges ragged. After that had dried thoroughly, I adhered my focal panel to the center, and mounted the whole thing on a white card base.

I'm entering my card in the following challenges:

a2z Scrapbooking's October Challenge: "Layer It"
Die Cut Divas: "Time to Emboss"
Through the Craft Room Door: "Anything Goes"

Saturday, October 15, 2016

Merry Christmas Cardinal


The theme this week for the Merry Monday Christmas Challenge Blog is "Retro/Vintage." I just got the "Vintage Christmas Post" stamp set & dies, and figured they'd be perfect for this challenge! I also used one of the banners from the Avery Elle "Build a Banner" stamp set, as well as its coordinating die. I got the inspiration for the card design from Dawn Olchefske's tutorial for the Falliday Fest event at Splitcoaststampers.com.


I stamped my cardinal in Charcoal ink onto a piece of Strathmore Mixed Media Paper. I also stamped the greenery in Forever Green, the banner in Charcoal, the pine cones in Cup o' Joe, & the greeting in Red Royal (all Hero Arts shadow inks). I colored the cardinal with my Inktense pencils, using a damp paintbrush to apply the color. I discovered, looking at a photo of a cardinal for reference, that the black area around his face wasn't large enough as drawn on the stamp, so I extended it with a black Inktense pencil. After I finished coloring, I let that dry, and then die cut all my images with their coordinating dies.

I created my card base, following Dawn's instructions, from burgundy cardstock. I cut my patterned paper from one of the "Christmas Carol" 6x6" papers by Graphic45. The paper is double-sided, so I just flipped it over for the other triangle panels. After I adhered my paper panels, I went ahead & glued on my elements, with the banner overlapping the opening in the card. I made sure not to apply glue to the point that I would adhere my card shut, however!

Inside of card
For the inside, I cut a panel from more Mixed Media Paper, and stamped a greeting from Hero Arts' "Joy to the World" set in Red Royal ink. I adhered that inside the card, and this was done!

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

a2z Scrapbooking's October Challenge: "Layer It"
Through the Craft Room Door: "Anything Goes"

Wednesday, October 12, 2016

Happy Birthday - with a Surprise!


Online Card Classes' "Wild Card" class is winding down this week, but I still found time to create a card inspired by Jennifer McGuire's lesson on Day 3.

I created my A2 card base from Simon Says Stamp's Fog cardstock. I placed it in my MISTI, and stamped the front with the "Painted Diamonds Background" stamp from Hero Arts. I then heat embossed that with Ranger Silver Pearl embossing powder, to give a subtle, shimmery tone-on-tone design.

I used Essentials by Ellen vellum for my belly band. I die cut a balloon with one of Lawn Fawn's "Party Balloons" dies, and attached that to the vellum strip with temporary adhesive. Then I stamped the greeting, from "Big Birthday Wishes" (Simon Says Stamp), in Versamark ink over both pieces, and heat embossed with Stampendous Sapphire PEARLustre embossing powder. Since the embossing powder didn't stick "cleanly" where the balloon overlapped the vellum, I removed the balloon, touched up the blank areas with a glue pen, applied more powder, and melted it. Finally, I glued the balloon in place permanently.

Inside of card
I die cut more balloons from paper scraps using another "Party Balloons" die. I adhered them to the inside, and tied lengths of crochet thread around the bottoms. To secure the thread, I added a dot of Perfect Paper Adhesive to each balloon, and after that dried, cut the strings. And that finished off this card!

Thank You Flower


My mom had a birthday recently, and received gifts from several people. So she asked me to create thank you cards that she could use to send to them. I have been taking Online Card Classes' "Wild Card" class, & decided to make a shaped thank you card, based on Debby Hughes' lesson on Day 1 of class.

I used the largest of DoCrafts' Xcut "Flower Bloom" dies to cut my card front & base pieces. I cut the front out of 140 lb. Strathmore watercolor paper. I then stamped the greeting (Stampabilities' "Thank You Circle Seal") in Versamark ink in the center of my flower, and heat embossed it with Recollections Snow embossing powder.

To color my flower, I used fingertip sponge daubers. I blended Crushed Olive Distress ink over the flower center first, spreading the color a little beyond the greeting. Then I blended Wild Honey Distress ink, starting from the outer edges with a heavier application, and getting lighter as I went towards the center. I had thought about spritzing it with water, but liked how it turned out so well that I just left it as is. Finally, I created my card base and adhered my main panel to the front of that.

Monday, October 10, 2016

Merry Christmas Pop Up


Day 3 of Online Card Classes' "Wild Card" class was all about pop-ups! I created one based on Kelly Marie Alvarez's & Laura Bassen's lessons.

I stamped my elements for the inside of the card, using the Christmas tree & snowman from Hero Arts' "Joy Snowman" & trees from Hero Arts' "Winter Cheer" stamp sets (both discontinued). I colored the ornaments on the Christmas tree with a red marker, the green doodads with a darker green marker, and added dots around the ornaments with a silver gel pen. I then die cut my images with the coordinating dies. I also die cut 2 snowy hills using Lawn Fawn's "Stitched Hillside Borders" dies.

For my background, I blended a sky with Tumbled Glass, Broken China, & Salty Ocean Distress inks. I let that dry thoroughly, then stamped my greeting, from Hero Arts' "Joy to the World," in Versamark ink. I heat embossed that with Ranger Super Fine Detail White embossing powder.

Side view of inside
I created my pop up, following the instructions in class. I didn't have any pop-up dies, so I used a ruler & craft knife to cut the mechanisms.

Front of card with belly band
For the outside of the card, I cut & scored a piece of green cardstock. I ran it through my die cutting machine with Darice's "Snowflake Swirl" embossing folder, to emboss just the front of the card. I created a belly band from a scrap of patterned paper I had in my stash. I die cut a snowflake from white cardstock using one of the "Paper Snowflakes, Mini" dies by Sizzix for Tim Holtz. I backed it with a dark blue circle I die cut with a Spellbinders "Standard Circles LG" die. Finally, I adhered it to the belly band.

I'm entering my card in Through the Craft Room Door's "Anything Goes" challenge.

Birthday Surprise Shaker


This is another card inspired by Online Card Classes' "Wild Card" class. I have a friend who has a birthday this week, and decided to create a card for her based on Laurie Willison's shaker card lesson on Day 4.

I didn't have the die she used for the main panel, so I had to improvise. I die cut a panel from green cardstock with the largest of Simon Says Stamp's "Stitched Rectangles." I cut a flap into that with my craft knife, using an old Notch & Die tool for the tab.

I stamped one of the large images from WPlus9's "Spring Blooms" set onto white cardstock, using Memento Cottage Ivy ink for the leaves & Cantaloupe for the flower center; and Hero Arts Pale Tomato for the flowers. Since there is no coordinating die for that particular image, I fussy cut it. I die cut a panel from white cardstock using one of the "Small Stitched Rectangle" dies from Lawn Fawn. I stamped my greeting, using the "It's Your Birthday" set by Simon Says Stamp, in Versafine Onyx Black, & adhered it to the flap on my card panel. Then I glued the flower cluster in place.

Inside of front shaker panel
I created a backer sheet for my shaker part by blending Twisted Citron & Mowed Lawn Distress inks onto a piece of Canson XL Mixed Media Paper, to create an ombre effect. I spritzed it with water from a Distress Sprayer, and blotted up the water, creating "bleach" spots in the ink. I created my shaker, adding some stamped & die cut images from "Spring Blooms," and sequins & seed beads. After assembling my shaker, I adhered it to the front of a white A2 card base.

Saturday, October 8, 2016

Thanks


This is another card inspired by Wild Card, from Online Card Classes. Jennifer McGuire had a lesson on Day 1 on gatefold cards. My mom is in need of thank you cards, so I decided to make one based on Jennifer's lesson.

I stamped the "Mondo Magnolia" from Essentials by Ellen onto a piece of 140 lb. watercolor paper, using Spun Sugar Distress ink. I then did some no-line watercoloring with Worn Lipstick Distress ink & a water brush. When that had dried, I die cut it with the coordinating die. I also die cut my greeting using Lawn Fawn's "Scripty Thanks" twice from teal cardstock. I used Perfect Paper Adhesive to glue the die cuts together, just to give the greeting more substance.

I created my card base, and adhered purple cardstock to the front panels. I cut 2 pieces of lace from my stash and glued them along the open edges. Finally, I mounted my flower to one side with foam tape, and glued my die cut thanks on top.

I'm entering my card in the following challenges:

Through the Craft Room Door: "Anything Goes"
Craft Your Passion Challenges #332: "Anything Goes"
Virginia's View Challenge #24: "Focal Point"
Creative Knockouts #162: "Thankful Thoughts"

Friday, October 7, 2016

Wild Card - Day 1


I've been taking Online Card Classes' newest class, "Wild Card," this week. The focus of the class is on shaped & interactive cards. Debby Hughes had a lesson on Day 1 on making shaped cards. My card was inspired by hers.

I used the largest of DoCrafts' Xcut "Butterflies 1" dies to cut a piece of 140 lb. watercolor paper. I inked it with Distress inks in Mustard Seed, Ripe Persimmon, & Candied Apple, and spritzed it with my homemade Perfect Pearls + water mist. When that had dried, I spritzed it lightly with my Distress Sprayer, to get larger water drops on it. I let that sit for several seconds, then blotted up the water, which bleached the color underneath.

For my greeting, I used Hero Arts' "Acts of Kindness" stamp set. I stamped one of the greetings on a vellum strip in Versamark ink, and heat embossed it with Recollections Gold Detail embossing powder. I also used a heart from the stamp set for the butterfly's body. I stamped it in Versafine Onyx Black ink, so I could more easily keep track of where I had stamped, and heat embossed it with Stampendous Marcasite embossing powder. (This is a black embossing powder that has sparkles in it. It's hard to get the glitter to show up in the photo!) When that had cooled, I adhered my vellum on top, and trimmed the ends of the strip to follow the outline of the butterfly.

I finished my card by creating a card base from white cardstock, and adhering my card front to that. I really like how this mini card came out! I will send it to Darlene at Live Love Cards, to send a note of encouragement to a Meals on Wheels recipient.

I'm entering my card in the following challenges:

Simon Says Stamp's Work It Wednesday: Use Red, Orange, Yellow, and/or Brown
Pile It On Challenge #118: Sparkle
Die Cut Divas: Time to Emboss
Incy Wincy Designs: All that Glitters

Wednesday, October 5, 2016

Happy Birthday Wishes


My mom's 80th(!) birthday is this week, and the school where she teaches is throwing her a party today. One of the guests she invited is a good friend of ours, and I offered to make a card for her to give my mom. I wanted something extra special, so I found this tutorial on Splitcoaststampers.com for a card with a detachable bookmark. My mom loves to read, so I figured this would be perfect!

After I created the card base from teal cardstock, I used my sewing machine with no thread to "stitch" the piercing line to make the bookmark detachable. I matted a piece of patterned paper from Echo Park's "Simple Life" 6x6" pad with green cardstock, and adhered that to the card front. I also matted a smaller piece to adhere to the coordinating bookmark.

Bookmark
To finish off the bookmark, I created a hole reinforcer by punching through a piece of green cardstock with a 1/4" hole punch, then punched around that with a 1/2" circle punch. I cut that in half, and glued it to the top of the bookmark, butted up against the green mat. Then I punched a hole through all layers with my 1/4" punch, & threaded through some fibers from my stash.

I chose the "It's Your Birthday" stamp set from Simon Says Stamp for the greeting. I stamped it in Versafine Onyx Black onto a strip of white cardstock, using my MISTI to help me place the words.

To add a special touch to the front of the card. I stamped one of the flowers & 2 leaves from Simon Says Stamp's "Summer Garden" set (discontinued) onto a scrap of Canson XL Mixed Media Paper. I used Abandoned Coral Distress ink for the flower, and Peeled Paint for the leaves. After stamping, I used a damp paintbrush to blend the color on each piece. Then I die cut them with the coordinating dies.

I glued the leaves & flower to the greeting strip, and trimmed the strip so that it stopped behind the cluster. Finally, I adhered that to my card front, & added some Gold Stickles to the flower center.

Inside of card
For the inside of the card, I cut a piece of white cardstock to 4x5.25". I stamped the same flower & one of the leaves I'd used for the front in the corner, masking to get an overlapping cluster. I used a black fine-tip pen to draw lines all around the panel. I found a sentiment on this website, formatted it in Photoshop, and printed it on my panel. Then I adhered that inside the card, and it was finished!

Tuesday, October 4, 2016

Thinking of U


I recently saw this tutorial on a "faux stamped leather" technique, and decided to give it a try. I wanted to make a specifically masculine card to send in my package to Darlene at Live Love Cards, to go to a Meals on Wheels recipient.

I didn't have any really suitable stamps in my collection, so I went through my dies. I came across the "Foliage 2" set from Paper Smooches, which I had yet to use. I decided one of those would be perfect to make a stamp. So I die cut it from 3mm thick craft foam, and stuck that on an acrylic block.

First, I die cut a piece of kraft cardstock with the largest of Spellbinders' "Labels Eight" dies. I stamped the leaf image multiple times around the panel with Hero Arts Cup o' Joe ink. I tried to keep it looking random by turning the stamp in different directions as I worked. Once I finished stamping, I put my panel on a mouse pad, rubbed over it with wax paper to make debossing a little easier, and traced loosely around each image with my stylus.

Next, I placed the "Labels Eight" die over the panel, with the cutting line face down, and traced around the inside of the die lightly with a pencil. I used my paper piercer to poke holes along my pencil line, then erased the line. This created stitching holes.

To ink the panel, I began with Fossilized Amber Distress ink, blending it over the entire piece. Then I blended Rusty Hinge, followed by Vintage Photo & a touch of Ground Espresso (all Distress inks). As I got darker, I added ink over smaller areas of the cardstock, finally blending the Ground Espresso only around the perimeter. After I had the "leather" look, I chose a light tan embroidery floss, and did a back stitch around the perimeter, using the holes I'd pierced before inking.

I used Hero Arts' "Year Round Sentiments" for the first part of my greeting. I masked off the "you" on the stamp, inked it with Cup o' Joe, removed the mask, and stamped the "Thinking of" on a strip of kraft cardstock. I die cut the "U" from more kraft with one of Simon Says Stamp's "Big U" dies, and inked it with Cup o' Joe to make it stand out more. Then I glued the banner to the "U," weaving it into the letter, and cut off the excess banner so it stopped behind the "U," before gluing everything to my card front panel.

For my card base, I cut 2 pieces of white cardstock with the same "Labels Eight" die. I scored one at 1/2" from the end for the back of my card, to create a hinge. I applied ATG adhesive above the score line, and adhered my other white panel to that. Finally, I glued my main panel to the front of my card base.

I'm entering this card in Simon Says Stamp's Wednesday "Anything Goes" challenge.

Saturday, October 1, 2016

Sending You Prayers


Our Daily Bread Designs' current challenge theme is "Dots or Dashes." A woman I know has a sister who is under hospice care. So I decided to go ahead and create a sympathy card to send to her whenever her sister finally passes.

I cut a tag from 140 lb. watercolor paper, and rounded the upper 2 corners with my 1/2" Corner Chomper. I also created a hole reinforcer from the same paper with 1/4" & 1/2" punches. I backed the tag with Scor-Tape adhesive sheet, and ran it through my die cutting machine with the inside die from ODBD's "Fancy Fritillary." Because the paper & Scor-Tape were so thick, the die did not cut completely through, which was exactly what I wanted. I stamped my greeting, from Hero Arts' "Prayers" stamp set, in Versafine Onyx Black ink, and heat embossed it with Recollections Clear Detail embossing powder. Finally, I added some fibers from my stash through the hole.

To color my tag, I used Fossilized Amber, Crushed Olive, & Broken China Distress inks. I applied areas of each color with a fingertip sponge dauber, and then spritzed the panel generously with water. I dried that with my heat tool, being careful not to "overcook" it, and applied another layer of the same colors. I spritzed the tag again to get some slight "texture," and dried it.

For my background, I cut another piece of watercolor paper to 4.25x5.5", and inked it thoroughly with Black Soot Distress ink. After I had covered the panel, I spritzed it lightly with my Distress Sprayer bottle, so I would get large water drops. I let that set for several seconds, then blotted it with a paper towel, to lift some of the ink. I just felt, since quite a bit of the background shows, this would give it a bit more interest, while still not detracting from the tag.

I removed the release paper from the Scor-Tape pieces I'd put on the back of my tag. I adhered it to the background at a slight angle, and used a black pen to add some faux stitching lines around the tag. After mounting my card front to a white A2 card base, I used some Ranger Multi Medium Matte to glue down some black Doodlebug Designs sequins.

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

Simon Says Stamp's Wednesday Challenge: "Anything Goes"
Simon Says Stamp's Monday Challenge: "Powder Power"
Incy Wincy Designs: "Things That Fly"

Friday, September 30, 2016

Thank You


Ellen Hutson is having their September Pin-Sights Challenge at The CLASSroom blog. Actually, today is the last day, so I'm getting my entry in kind of just under the wire! :) I used all the images from the Essentials by Ellen "Mondo Hydrangea" stamp set, as well as its coordinating dies. The greeting is from Stampendous' "Happy Messages" set.

I stamped the flowers & leaf with Hero Arts Soft Granite ink on Canson XL Mixed Media paper. I needed a waterproof ink, but wanted a softer look than black, hence my choice of ink. I stamped the individual blooms multiple times, and the large cluster & leaf just once. Then I watercolored them with my Winsor & Newton Cotman watercolors and a water brush. After they had dried completely, I cut them with the coordinating dies.

I liked the "weathered wood" background I used in this card so much, I decided to do another version for this card. This time, instead of leaving the paper white, I lightly inked a panel of 140 lb. watercolor paper with Hickory Smoke Distress ink first. Then I applied lines of Perfect Paper Adhesive over the panel, and let that dry completely. After scoring the panel with a stylus to create the look of boards, I went in with more Hickory Smoke and a mini ink blending tool and just blended the ink lightly. Then I blended on Mermaid Lagoon Distress ink. I went back & forth a couple of times with each color, until I had the look I wanted. I finished by wiping off any residual ink from the glue lines with a damp paper towel.

I stamped my greeting on a strip of vellum with Ranger Archival Jet Black ink. Because my background would be so busy, I really needed my greeting to pop. I set the ink with my heat tool, and cut the left end of the strip into a V-shape.

After I glued all my die cut images in place with more PPA, I positioned my greeting banner. I held it in place on the front of my panel with a couple of pieces of painter's tape, and wrapped the right end of the banner around to the back of my watercolor piece. I adhered that in place with my ATG adhesive, and removed the tape. I applied tiny dots of PPA behind the greeting on the back of the banner, then put an acrylic block over it to adhere it to the background panel. Once that had set up, I added a bit of sparkle & shine with some Darice 5mm & 8mm Crystal sequins, and glued 3mm clear gems from The Paper Studio in the center of each. Finally, I adhered my card front to a white A2 card base.

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

Simon Says Stamp's Wednesday Challenge: "Anything Goes"
Craft Your Passion Challenge #331: "Anything Goes"
Through the Craft Room Door: "Anything Goes"

Monday, September 26, 2016

Happy Birdday


A Blog Named Hero's current challenge theme is "Texture." I decided to create one more card for this. I will send this to Darlene at Live Love Cards, to go to a Meals on Wheels recipient. She has a few opportunities if you like to donate cards. You can read more about them at her site.


I used Sketch #10 from Operation Write Home--an oldie but goodie! I first cut 3 tags from cream cardstock, and stamped the owl from Hero Arts "Missing You" set on each, like he's peeking in from the sides. I colored the owls with Prismacolor colored pencils. Since this is a birthday card, and the owl looks kind of funky anyway, I colored him in bright, funky colors! I colored the whites of the eyes with a white gel pen, and used a black Sakura glaze pen on the pupils.

For the background, I used Penny Black's "Dotlets" stencil & Ranger Texture Paste. I taped my cardstock down and taped the stencil in place over it. I then spread the paste over the stencil, trying to get kind of an uneven texture, but not too wild. I removed my stencil and cleaned it & my knife, and set my panel aside to dry. After it had dried, I replaced the stencil, and inked the dots with Squeezed Lemonade Distress ink. For the strip behind the tags, I ran a piece of green cardstock through my Fiskars crimper tool, just to give another bit of texture & interest.

I stamped the greeting, also from "Missing You," on a strip of cream cardstock in Versafine Onyx Black ink. I cut it into a banner shape, and inked the edges with Squeezed Lemonade.

After I inked the edges of my tags with Squeezed Lemonade, I glued my crimped piece to the background, and then glued the tags to it. I punched a hole in the top of each tag, through all 3 layers, with my Crop-a-Dile II Big Bite. Then I set a gold eyelet in each hole. To continue the metal motif, I used my Tim Holtz Tiny Attacher and staples I'd painted with liquid gold leafing to staple the greeting banner. I squirted a bit of glue under the banner, just to hold it down. Finally, I mounted my card front to a white A2 card base.

I'm also entering this card in a2z Scrapbooking's September Challenge: "Make It a Tag!"