Wednesday, July 31, 2013

SPARKS, Players, and LOTS of photos!

OK! You ever have one of those weeks where you just cannot settle into your usual routine? That would be this week. Up too late, not sleeping well, at loose ends all day long like I've forgotten to do something...argh. Anyway, since most of you are here for cards, first I will do that, and then I will show you a whole bunch of pictures from today.

Annnnnd, I jumped on the bandwagon not too long ago and started a Facebook page - if you'd like to 'like' it the link is here.

Paper Smooches SPARKS has a week five "Anything Goes" challenge - yay! and The Paper Players have a sketch this week.  I was searching through my (enormous) stash of papers and found this Bo Bunny pad, and this came together:

Supplies: papers from Bo Bunny; sentiment from Paper Smooches; Colorbox Frost White pigment ink; Stampendous white detail EP; circle punches - 3/4" and 1"; Sakura Stardust glitter pen

I wanted to highlight the little butterfly, so I sketched over it with my glitter pen & then made a little frame for it. It's a happy little butterfly :) 

Here's the Paper Players sketch:

And now, a jump in case you want to skip the personal stuff :) 

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Shopping our Stash #112 - Your Oldest Punch/Die

Back to our intermittent theme of using your oldest supplies at Shopping our Stash! This time we want you to use your oldest punch or die (that you still have, of course!). I imagine a lot of you were like me & bought cute little shaped punches when you started out...that don't work all that well, and ended up being passed on ;)

Of the ones I still have, two Martha Stewart punches are the oldest - the hydrangea punch, and the butterfly. I still use the butterfly one quite often, so I thought I'd give the hydrangea a turn, and rebuild my wedding card stash at the same time:

Supplies: papers from stash; Hero Arts wedding cake stamp; Spectrum Noir markers; classic small oval Nesties; Liquid Pearls; MS Hydrangea punch

For a change, instead of shaping the flowers first, I glued them on first, and then lifted the petals. That wasn't really a plan so much as a -whoops, forgot a step - but hey, it's over now. Stop living in the past ;) 

Come & play along with this challenge until next Monday, August 5th - hop on by & leave the rest of my teamies some love!


Tuesday Morning Sketches #209 - Your Next Stamp!

Good morning lovelies! I'm coming off several days of very little sleep - anyone got a line on a caffeine drip? Please share! It happens now & then, but man, do the days ever drag until I get back to normal.

So, Tuesday Morning Sketches has one more sketch from the archives for the last week in July - and we are being sponsored by the super cute Your Next Stamp store! 

Here's my card, featuring Madison: (thank you to Laura for the images!)

Supplies: Madison image & sentiment from Your Next Stamp; Bic & Spectrum Noir markers; Amy Tangerine papers

And here's the sketch:

Don't forget to visit the rest of my teamies!
Wendy (joining us from the YNS team!)


Monday, July 29, 2013

Better late than never, right?

I had meant to have this go up on Saturday, and time got away from me. On Saturday, my gramma turned 80 - this woman has lived an amazing life, at times a heartbreakingly difficult one, and yet she is still around, still sassy and saucy, and I am so proud to have her to lean on. Here's my card for her - it's the same size as the ones I made for my mom & sister to give her, so that the three of them together form a sort of a set.

 *remember, you can click the pictures to view them full-size*

Supplies: lots & lots of stitched grosgrain ribbon; miscellaneous buttons from stash; heart buttons from Dress it Up; AC Thickers number stickers; Tim Holtz design ruler, paper piercer, and black embroidery thread.

The box - afterwards tied shut with a black piece of matching ribbon.

To make the flowers, I used the tutorial that my Tuesday Morning Sketches teamie Laura posted a few weeks ago - it is super easy to follow, and once you get the hang of it these are very quick to make. I cut a mat slightly smaller than the card base so that I could stitch the flowers & buttons on, and then used double-sided tape to add the folded leaves. Finally, I pierced along the edges of the mat with the Tim Holtz ruler as a guide, and stitched the border. 

Happy birthday, Gramma!

Friday, July 26, 2013

Carol of the Sleigh Belles

Here we are, week two of the current prompt over at jingle belles, where *I* am the lovely guest star! Such a warm fuzzy I have :) So, a brief reminder:

For this fortnight's prompt Jessi came up with "Sleigh Belles Ring" and of course, always mad for a fab title, we jumped on it! We debated for a bit whether the brief should be, "Make a card with a sleigh on it" or, "Make a card with bells on it"... the latter encompassing either the real jingly kind, or just the image of a bell. Finally we decided we'd allow *either* (or both?!) of these ideas... and for anyone who finds those too challenging, we threw a third possibility, "Make a card using sheet music". So basically, if you cannot find SOMETHING you like in this one, you're just not trying, lol! :)

This week I decided to go COLOURFUL! 

Supplies: paper from Crate Paper; Hero Arts sentiment; Brushed Corduroy distress ink; K&Co deer die cut; classic small oval & circle Nesties; scrap of pink glitter paper; pink & orange twine; Bow Easy; multi-coloured bells 

The sentiment, an olllllld one from Hero Arts, is one of the first stamps I ever bought on Ebay. It came in a mixed lot, and I am fairly certain that it's the stamp that inspired me to use bells on a card for the very first time. And, once again, I wanted to use something that would whet your crafty appetites for the prize - this time some of the multi-coloured bells:

So, why don't you go see what the lovely Miss Lauren & Miss Stephanie have created, and then go & link up your own Sleigh Belles Ring card HERE by Wednesday for a chance to win some yummy goodies! 


Thursday, July 25, 2013

Monochromatic at the Pink Elephant!

Monochromatic cards are some of my very favourites - and looking through my recent cards, I've apparently been in a monochromatic creative mood of late. The current challenge at The Pink Elephant is to make a monochromatic card/page, so here are a whole bunch! Turns out that my favourite monochrome themes are baby, sympathy, and thank you ;)

Supplies: striped paper from Stampin' Up!; sticker from Echo Park; buttons from stash
Lots of dimension for this baby card - and buttons are generally a favourite on those too!

Supplies: stamps from Unity; Memento Gray Flannel ink; Versamagic chalk ink (Aegean? I think?); patterned paper from Making Memories; Corner Chomper; pearls.
 I stamped the bird 'cameo' onto white cardstock with several inks before deciding on this one. I then fussy-cut around it, and added it to the card with foam tape.

Supplies: paper from Amy Tangerine; sentiment from Paper Smooches; rub-ons from Basic Grey (I think?); Memento Tuxedo Black ink; Corner Chomper
Another super simple card - the doodly paper from Amy Tangerine was perfect for using up some random rub-ons left over from another project and shoved into a random package. 

Supplies: All stamps from Paper Smooches; Labels 5 Nesties; Peacock Feathers distress ink
All the stamping was done with the Peacock Feathers ink - this card was inspired by this card that I made several weeks ago. 

Supplies: more pink striped paper from Stampin' Up!; onesies fussy-cut from Echo Park paper; sentiment from PTI; Memento Gray Flannel ink; pink pearls; classic small & lacy circle Nesties; crochet mat
Another twins card! The 12" Echo Park paper has motifs large enough to fussy-cut and use as focal images. Love that!

Supplies: all stamps from PTI; Memento Gray Flannel ink
Butterflies are an image, like birds, that I reach for over & over again for sympathy cards. Grey is appropriately soft without being as harsh as black. 

SO! If you too feel monochromatic, link up over at the Pink Elephant by Sunday :) I'll be back tomorrow with my second card for this round over at Jingle Belles, and Saturday will be a special post for me as well!

Papercraft Star turns 3!

Happy birthday, Papercraft Star! Have you visited their blog lately? They had a redo, and my goodness it's gorgeous :) Just like we girls feel fresh & pretty after the salon, it feels good to change up your online look once in a while too! Congratulations!

They have a gorgeous beach inspiration photo this week, and I took that prompt and ran wild with it, getting super messy, inky, and sticky. I've really gone quite loosely with the 'ocean' theme and used up my very last mermaid sticker from PSX. *sniff*

Supplies: mermaid sticker from PSX; polka-dot stamps from PTI; Versamark & clear embossing powder; Distress inks: Dusty Concord, Mustard Seed, Mowed Lawn, Tumbled Glass, Salty Ocean; Tattered Angels Glimmer mist in Turquoise, Blue Skies, and Key Lime; clear 'dew drops' from dollarama

I made several of these inky backgrounds at the same time by sponging on  the distress inks, then spraying VERY liberally with the Glimmer mists. Once they were dry, I 'splatted' again with the mists, and a bit of water. Once they were dry again, I stamped with the polka dots & embossed. 

The Papercraft Star inspiration photo:

The challenge is open until Monday, so hopefully you get a chance to play along too!

Kraft & Twine Birdie

There was a large part of my goofy self that wanted to turn this into 'Tie ONE on' but that bout of food poisoning is in the recent enough past that adding adult beverages still seems like a very bad idea ;) SO, The Kraft Journal  would like to see us interpret the theme 'tie IT on', and CAS on Sunday would like us to use Kraft + Twine - could two challenges go together better?

Supplies: stamps (bird, sentiment) from PTI; Vintage Photo distress ink; Paper Smooches twine; kraft & white card stock; printed vellum from Hot Off The Press (talk about ancient stash...ahem...); classic small circle Nesties

Finding the torn piece of kraft cardstock in my stash got this whole card going - finding that that sentiment fit perfectly across it - the die cut circle was already on my desk from another project...seriously, this was a great big bouquet of happy coincidences here! And as for that vellum - it's from a book of vellum papers put out by Hot Off the Press, and for fun I looked for the copyright on the book - 2001. Wow!

The Kraft Journal's challenge ends on Sunday at 6 PM Central.
CAS on Sunday's challenges run for 2 weeks, so you still have until August 2nd to enter this one. 


Summer Lovin' at Catered Crop

Summertime, and the livin' is easy...

Even though summer really isn't my favourite season, there are still some things you just can't do other times of the year! Catered Crop's current challenge is called Summer Lovin', and I suppose I can bring myself to enjoy summer for just a little bit to fit in ;)

This is a Mo Manning image & sentiments that were offered by her as freebies ages & ages ago, and this is the first time I've coloured it with markers.

Supplies: Mo Manning digi image & sentiments; Timeless Twine (denim); Amy Tangerine papers; Bic and Spectrum Noir markers; 1/4" hole punch (for tabs to wrap twine); polka dot ribbon from stash; classic small circle Nesties

I tried to shade her hair with colours that were too far apart - I'm happy with the end result, although it is definitely not what I attempted, lol! And the 'pointillism' background is such a fun one - absolutely perfect for me, and I've been using it more & more. 

Be right back with a number of posts - I am definitely a creature of habit, and my 'habit' does not include having my husband on vacation from work & wanting to do STUFF. Sheesh!


Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Shopping our Stash #111 - I do not need another...or maybe I do?

Pre-scheduling once again...I don't know how people do this regularly! I much prefer live-blogging. 

So how's that title for you? Clear as mud? Well, here's what we mean by this week's Shopping our Stash challenge: 

something you buy a lot of, like every butterfly stamp, or every Magnolia stamp, every pad of paper by a certain company, or every color of washi tape...


Obviously this item will be different for each of us, so be sure to tell us what YOUR item is in your post. I waffled - I have a number of things that I buy too many of, but in the end I went with the item you all might have guessed - BUTTONS. I do not need another button, but even though I have many, there are still times when I don't have the *right* one. I store them, by colour, in Ziploc bags. Riley loves to sort them for me :)

Supplies: buttons! 62, to be exact, all sewn on; PTI sentiment; Memento Gray Flannel ink; Paper Smooches clouds die; miscellaneous rhinestones in matching colours

I purposely chose a mix of sizes & types of buttons - clear ones as well, as they'd show up better on the white paper than they do on colours/patterns. It makes for a wonky rainbow, but I can tell you - although I didn't sell it, it got picked up off my table about a dozen times! It's just so HAPPY.

Come & play along with this challenge until next Monday, July 29th - hop on by & leave the rest of my teamies some love!


Tuesday Morning Sketches #209 - CC Designs!

Good morning! A new Tuesday Morning Sketch, and some Paper Smooches stamps, make Jessi a happy girl :) This week we're being sponsored by the awesome CC Designs again:

Supplies: Paper Smooches Party Posse; Memento Tuxedo Black ink; Bic Markers; Ranger white gel pen; Mod Podge Dimensional Magic; Wplus9 banner die; Amy Tangerine papers; corner rounder (for scalloped edge); Timeless Twine; classic small circle Nesties; googly eye

Every time I use this little turtle, I *have* to gloss up his shell & toenails. I was also inspired to try getting him all speckly by Pamela Ho's card for the PS SPARKS Ocean Challenge a few weeks ago. My white gel pen wasn't particularly up to cooperating, but I do like how it turned out. Different!

This one is for Tuesday Morning Sketches PLUS the Seize the Birthday 'anything goes' challenge & the Moxie Fab World "birthday card" challenge. I definitely make more birthday cards than anything else!

Here's the sketch:

For once I'm not live-blogging early in the morning - we're off to Miramichi for a visit with Grammie. It's going to be a busy week!

Sunday, July 21, 2013

Before & After for little red wagon

Well, the gals at little red wagon have a tough one this week - they want us to 

Take a project you've made but never felt satisfied with, and make-it-over!
  It can be as simple as adding/removing embellishments or doing a complete gut job, keeping only the basics.  Be sure to show us both the BEFORE and AFTER photos!

Although I photographed it, I never shared this card on the blog because I really wasn't all that happy with it. I was trying to use up some scraps (which is good), and using a fun new stamp (which is good), and practicing with my alcohol markers (which is good)...and then the bling happened. Not good.

Supplies: Paper Smooches stamps; Memento Tuxedo Black ink; Bic Markers; Basic Grey papers; classic small oval Nesties; Mod Podge dimensional magic; bling strips

It's just Meh. I still have it. It's even in my card basket, but I really don't like it. I DO like the feel of the scraps layout, though, so I tried again:

Supplies: paper scraps from Bo Bunny & MME; stamp from Studio G; Memento Tuxedo Black ink; Mod Podge Dimensional Magic; googly eyes; 1.5" circle punch; Bic Markers; Corner Chomper

I think what makes me like the second card more is that it's got more white space. There are still 4 different patterns, lots of colours, and the little details like googly eyes & glossy bits - but they are balanced. The variety in the strip widths makes me happier too.

Oh man, I think I might have stepped over to the CAS side. I did NOT see that coming! 

I could likely play this challenge another 100 times...there's always something I'd like to change about my cards, especially looking at them months/years after making them! 


A little romance...

I haven't ended up playing along with the Tuesday Trigger lately, but that lacy made me think of this medallion stamp from Stampendous again. You ever get in a rut of sorts with stamps? Not so much that everything looks the same, but that you're reaching for the same supplies over & over? No? 

*crickets chirping*

OK then, here's my card:

Supplies: Stampendous medallion stamp, and clear detail EP; Shabby Shutters distress ink; Versamark; Tonic edge distresser; sheer green ribbon; pewter brad from stash

To emboss in green, I inked up the stamp first with Versamark, then again with Shabby Shutters; then I used clear detail powder. The fun flowery doo-dad was made by cutting circles from wide sheer ribbon & heating them with my heat gun. I made sure to fray some of the edges before heating to keep the threads fluffed up. There are 7 layers altogether. After heating, I used my paper piercer & mousepad to poke a hole in the centre of each one for the brad to fit through. After distressing the edges of the panel, I inked it directly with the Shabby Shutters pad, and then mounted the panel to the base with foam tape.

The deadline for this Trigger is tonight, so chop chop! One more post coming up :)

Cool & Sparkly, How I like my beverages.....

So I'm recovering from what appears to be a bout of food poisoning...which I believe is Karma's way of getting back at me for not being sympathetic enough to Rob's food poisoning a few weeks ago. Without getting TOO into detail, let me just say....ew. It was not a great way to spend an afternoon where the humidex was in the 40s Celsius.

Prior to my utterly unpleasant experience, I managed to get a whole bunch of cards made up - and since we're off for a visit to Grammie's I'm just going to post them all in a row. Grab a cuppa :)

This first one is for Crafty Creations Challenge - Sparkle!, and for the CASology prompt: COOL. (Which made me think of the Outkast song 'Hey Ya' - what's cooler than cool? ICE COLD!)

Supplies: silver shimmer card stock; Versamark; Moonstone (silver) embossing powder, Stampendous; Snowflakes stamp from PTI; Sentiment stamp from Stampendous; silver tinsel thread; bells

Four colours of silver on the same card? And yet it works :) The tinsel thread is some I picked up in a package at the dollar store, and let me just say....I will not be trying to sew with it any time soon. Not the best quality stuff, but it is pretty, and SPARKLY :) And of course, snow is cool. How I miss winter :)


Friday, July 19, 2013

Jingle Belles - Sleigh Belles Ring!

Oh em gee, today is finally here! I am so excited to tell you that *I* am a guest star at Jingle Belles this fortnight! What makes this even more exciting for me is that way back in January I set one resolution for myself - to play along with the Jingle Belles EVERY CHALLENGE this year. Take back December! And, quite possibly for the first time ever, I've stuck with it all the way. Lauren & Stephanie have made it fun to get a little Christmas spirit throughout the year :)

So, here's the prompt:

For this fortnight's prompt Jessi came up with "Sleigh Belles Ring" and of course, always mad for a fab title, we jumped on it! We debated for a bit whether the brief should be, "Make a card with a sleigh on it" or, "Make a card with bells on it"... the latter encompassing either the real jingly kind, or just the image of a bell. Finally we decided we'd allow *either* (or both?!) of these ideas... and for anyone who finds those too challenging, we threw a third possibility, "Make a card using sheet music". So basically, if you cannot find SOMETHING you like in this one, you're just not trying, lol! :)

Here's my card:
Supplies: Unity image & sentiment; Memento Tuxedo Black ink; Spectrum Noir markers; Sakura Stardust glitter pen; Echo Park paper; bells from Michaels; classic small circle and lacy circle Nesties; Corner Chomper; crochet mat by me - available here. 

I knew I wanted to show off a crochet mat to whet your crafty appetite for the little prize packet I put together - and that awesome glittery bell - and the rest of the card just came together! I'd never inked up this Itty Bitty combo from Unity, so it came to play along with Friends with Flair :) The colour palette was completely inspired by the glitter bell - once I'd coloured the ornaments I knew I needed to find some matching paper, and wah-lah! 

OK, now, head on over to the Jingle Belles blog & see the prize you could win just for playing along & getting a little bit ahead of your Christmas panic! 


ETA: For those of you who might be interested, my friend expecting twins? Two healthy little girls were delivered yesterday afternoon, at 37 weeks. 5lb 7oz, and 6lb 7oz. I am so happy for their family! 

Thursday, July 18, 2013

Another card for Gramma!

This card is for my sister to give our Gramma - she turns 80 next weekend. Sarah asked me to use quilling, and since I wanted all 3 cards (the first one is here) to be the same size & have the same sort of presentation box, I decided to do something a little different - quill with 5/8" paper.

Supplies: 5/8" quilling paper in rose & pink; AC Thickers; bling strips from Dollarama; Bazzill card stock; button from stash

I used 12" long strips to quill each petal, shaping the rose ones into tear drops and the pink into marquise. Once they'd dried in place, I glued on the awesome sparkly button (with the shanks removed) for a super-sparkly centre. The edges just wanted to be sparkly too! 

The box is shown here in the background - simple velvet flowers attached with a rhinestone brad from my ancient stash, and a length of ribbon to hold it closed. The box directions are quite simple - they're available here. 

With the pink, the quilling, and all the sparkle, this couldn't be a more perfect Feminine Birthday Card - so I'm popping it in over at The Pink Elephant, and also in at the Moxie Fab Birthday Card challenge.

I'm SUPER stoked for tomorrow....crafty surprise coming up :)

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Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Shopping our Stash #110 - Strangest/Weirdest Craft Purchase

Today's a pretty exciting day for the team at Shopping our Stash - we are welcoming a new member! Please pop over & say hello to Chana, aka Redora Lee,  of CARD-D-OLOGY. (Love that blog name!)

This week's challenge is a fun one - 
we are asking you to perhaps put aside your pride, or at least 'fess up about the strangest or weirdest purchase you have made for the purposes of creating something!  You know how sometimes you are out shopping, and you spy something that you think will be perfect for a particular project, or to try this technique, or to CASE some other style?  Maybe you bought a ton of a particular embellishment, or a pack of something you thought was cute, but then later you are wondering why you did it- now is the time to use it for our new Challenge!

I have a confession of sorts to make - I had a really hard time choosing something to work with for this challenge! It is not that I don't make strange purchases (after all, sale items often call my name, come home with me, and then collect dust.) It's that they all seem like such REASONABLE things to have in my stash! I finally went with sprinkles. You know, cake sprinkles? I bought them because JJ Bolton made a really cool card a while back using sprinkles  to make patterned paper. 

That didn't work out for me ;) So, attempt #2:

Supplies: stamps from The Cat's Pajamas; Memento Tuxedo Black ink; Bic Markers; papers from Bo Bunny; American Crafts yellow ZING glitter; Liquid Applique; yellow crepe paper; sprinkles

While the Liquid Applique was still wet, I added sprinkles. Instead of waiting for the LA to dry, I heated it right away. The sprinkles melted a little bit, but it looks pretty cool. Next time I would take out the white ones - they are there, but they blend right in & make it look like there's a patch missing. 

Come & play along with this challenge until next Monday, July 22nd - hop on by & leave the rest of my teamies some love!

And, don't forget to check out my pal Barb's sale page - still lots of awesome bits & bobs there!