August 30, 2007

Something Marvelous

A few months ago I just had to have the Metallic Art Pencils from Stampin' Up! because I felt the need to have them. Then they sat on my shelf for a few months and I got the nerve to experiment with them last week. I learn by playing, so when the Ways to Use It Challenge for today was to color with pencils I had another opportunity to teach myself something.

I've heard that people color with Prismacolor pencils and use Gamasol to blend, and I've heard that people use Odorless Mineral Spirits as well. This is all Greek to me. I don't own Prismacolor pencils or blending stumps. I decided to make due with what I have. I do have Odorless Mineral Oil that I got for under $1 at Walgreens. I use it to keep my cutting board nice and conditioned so that the wood doesn't dry out and warp or crack. I got the bottle out of my lazy susan spice rack and grabbed a few Q-Tips before I headed downstairs to my stamping space. Have I mentioned when I win the lottery (which I don't play) I am adding a second story onto my home and in that 2nd story I will have a nice loft space with walls of windows to do my stamping in? My husband thinks I am just joking but it will happen some day.

I took a piece of Shimmery White cardstock and stamped the Dragonfly from Something Marvelous in Basic Gray. I really don't know when the stamp set came out or retired, but my Sister-in-law loaned it to me when I became a Stampin' Up! Demonstrator and I only owned 2 sets of my own. When I recently moved all of my stamping stuff from two tables along the wall into cabinets I rediscovered the stamps she sent over to my house and I thought this would be a perfect image to color in with the Metallic Art Pencils. I simply colored along the outline of the wings in blue and went over it with my Q-Tip that I had stuck into my Mineral Spirits. It colored the image so easily and smoothly. I did the same with the greenish color on the dragonflies body. After I was done I outlined it a bit in silver and pulled the color a bit more to add some nice shading along the "drag" lines of the stamped image. I heat set the image with my heat gun to make sure the mineral spirits were dry. I then matted it on Mellow Moss and Ruby Red before setting it aside.

I took a piece of 4 1/4 X 11 piece of Blue Bayou and scored at 5 1/2". I used my largest Priceless flourish and stamed in Blue Bayou before adding the flowers in Whisper White craft ink. I then colored in the centers of these flowers in Ruby Red when the ink was dry. I then matted a piece of Soft Sky designer series paper with Mellow Moss cardstock and tied a length of Blue Bayou Double Stitched ribbon around it. I added the sentiment from Something Marvelous in Blue Bayou on Shimmery White cardstock, matted it on Mellow moss and added two Vintage Brads. I then set the sentiment up on dimensionals before adding all of the elements to my cardfront. I always get all of my elements together, placed loosely on my cardfront before I commit to placing them there permanently. That way I can change anything down to the last second. I am really pleased with my second coloring attempt with these pencils and I hope you like it too.


Blog Candy Winner

I used to pick a winner. Today's lucky winner is #1

Emily said...
Jenn, Congratulations on 25,000! Thats awesome! My favorite color combo is So Saffron, Rose Red and Chocolate Chip, but I'm sure thats going to change when I get a better feel for the In Colors =).

Emily, please e-mail me your snail mail address and I will get your goodies out to you.


August 29, 2007

Wedding Card

This weekend we are taking the boys to my parents house while I go to a meeting with my upline and sidelines to have some stamping fun. My parents have a wedding to go to on Sunday so my mom asked me to whip up a wedding card if I had time to do it. Well everyday I make time to stamp, so that was my task for today. I combined it with the SCS Sketch Challenge and I was on a roll.

I love Groovy Guava and Close to Cocoa together. I threw in a little Very Vanilla and I think it made for a cute wedding card. The base is a 4 1/4 X 11 piece of scored at 5 1/2". I then stamped a piece of Groovy Guava with Tres Chic and then again with Aida Cloth. I just figured out I'd been calling my Adia Cloth background Linen in the last few posts. I guess in my cleaning spree I switched boxes. I didn't realize my error until I was leafing through my catalog looking to see what I wanted to order next. Sorry about that. After my stamping was done I sponged the edges with some more Grooby Guava ink. The next layer is a piece of Close to Cocoa 3 7/8" X 2" and is sponged with Chocolate Chip to give the edges a bit more definition. I then cut a piece of Groovy Guava 1/4" smaller, stamped it with the dill looking stamp from Garden Silhouettes and again sponged the edges. After I paper pierced my edges with my tools from the Crafter's Tool kit.

I love hemp twine. I love the texture of it and the slightly masculine look it gives a card. A wedding card is traditionally for a male and a female, so I wanted a hint of both masculine and feminine touches. My main image layer uses a piece of Very Vanilla cut to 3 3/4" X 2 1/4" with each subsequent layer being 1/8" larger. I stamped the image in Groovy Guava, stamped off on some scratch paper and then onto my image panel. I like the subtle look that comes from that. I paper pierced the bottom corners, ticket corner punched the top corners and added two Vintage Brads. The sentiment is from Hugs and Wishes and was stamped in Close to Cocoa.

To finish off the card I added a piece of chipboard from OnBoard Blossoms and Basics. I ran it through my Groovy Guava ink pad, dried it with my heat gun and then rolled the outside edges in Close to Cocoa ink. To give a little sparkle I outlined the heart with my 2 way Glue Pen and added some Dazzling Diamonds glitter. I attached it to the card with Dimensionals. I thought it needed a bit more definition to make it stand out from the card so I added a few polka dots with my White Gel pen.

I hope my mom likes my efforts and that the couple enjoys thier card.


Quick Update

If you want to enter my 25K Blog Candy contest you have until tomorrow morning. I will draw a winner when I get back home from taking Colin to Preschool. To enter leave a comment HERE with your favorite color combination. I will use to pick my winner. I am also taking note of the color combos you suggested and working them into my stamping time. If I use your combo I'll be sure to let everyone know and will credit you for it.

I guess I never updated my ATC Box Blog Candy on my blog. I did contact the winner and got her the goodies before I went on vacation. The winner of that drawing was

CAKVD said...
Hello! Awesome tutorial! I made my box, here it is:

Thanks so much! It was lots of fun!
Cheryl KVD

Sorry for the late update. Packing for vacation and getting 2 kids under the age of 5 from Illinois to California was a bit hectic.

August 28, 2007

The First Noel

This is the very first card I made with Big On Christmas. I knew I wanted this set the minute it came out, but I still don't really own it. I have this set, like a lot of them, on loan from my mom and sister. I started out with an entirely different idea about this card and this is what I ended up with.

The colors are from today's color combination and are Purely Pomegranate, Pretty in Pink and Old Olive. The base of the card is 5 1/4" square made from Purely Pomegranate cardstock. I have a 5" X 2" piece of Old Olive cardstock that I stamped with the Linen background stamp and sponged the edges with Old Olive ink. The right side is a piece of Pretty in Pink that is 5" X 3 1/4". I stamped it with Tres Chic in Pretty in Pink and again sponged the edges. When I was done I used SNAIL to attach the two pieces together (they overlap by 1/4"). I then ran them through my sewing machine instead of pulling out All in a Row again. The center panel changed shapes and stamp sets several times. I finally decided to turn it into a Christmas card and I think it looks pretty even though the colors are a little non-traditional.

Noel is stamped on Whisper White in Jetblack Stazon. I used my AquaPainter to color the letters and ornament in with Old Olive, Pretty in Pink, Purely Pomegranate and gave the top a bit of Summer Sun on the hook piece. I colored another ornament, cut it out and layered it with dimensionals. I also used a bit of Bashful Blue to outline the letters and ornament. I then tied on a piece of Pretty in Pink grosgrain ribbon. Finally to finish off the card I added 2 flowers in Purely Pomegranate from the Three For You Punch and added silver brads in the center.

August 27, 2007

Fabulously Irresistable

A few days ago I asked on my 25K Blog candy post what some of your favorite Color Combinations are. I don't ask questions just to get you to post. I honestly want to know. Jackie W said that her favorite color combination was from a Level 3 Simply Scrappin' Kit and was surprised that it's not on the Stampin' Up! In Color Chart. Her color combination was Purely Pomegranate, Mellow Moss, Soft Sky and Groovy Guava. That is what I used on this card.

This card meet several challenges and it is for Beate's Weekend Sketch Challenge, Jackie W's Color Combination and Try a New Technique on SCS.

This card has a 5 1/4 X 10 1/2 base and is 5 1/4 square when folded. The Mellow Moss layer is a 5" square and I stamped Tres Chic in Mellow Moss before sponging the edges in the same color adn using the ticket corner punch on it. I added a strip of Soft Sky Designer Series paper that is 4 7/8" X 2 1/2" and I stamped each of the sides with my All in a Row Argyle in Basic Gray to add Faux Stitching. The bottom corners are also punched with the ticket corner punch. The Groovy Guava strip is 5" X 1 1/2" and is stamped with the Linen background stamp in Groovy Guava and then the edges are stamped with the All in a Row polka dot stamp. I tied a piece of Basic Gray Taffeta Ribbon around the strip. I really love the Taffeta Ribbon and I have to get some more of the colors. The circle elements are made from my Scallop Punch in Purely Pomegranate and each scallop is stamped with the asterix from All in a Row in Whisper White Craft ink and layered with 1 1/4" circle in Mellow Moss that was stamped in Versamark with one of the flowers from Fabulous Flowers. I cut off part of each circle element to line it up with the background of my card base.

The main image layer uses a piece of Glossy White cardstock that is 3" X 3 1/2". I stamped the various flowers from Fabulous Flowers in Soft Sky, Groovy Guava and Mellow Moss. I then stamped the largest bloom in Versamark and heat embossed it with Crystal Clear Embossing Powder with my heat gun. After it was cool I brayered over the image in Purely Pomegranate ink until I was satisfied with the deepness of the color. Taking a tissue I wiped the ink off of my embossed image before adhering it to a piece of Groovy Guava and then Basic Gray cardstock. Each layer is 1/8" larger than the original. I used the ticket corner punch on each of the corners of the top two layers, and then added Vintage brads to finish off the layer.

Using my large oval punch I added the sentiment layer from Priceless that was stamped in Mellow Moss on Glossy White cardstock. I then used SNAIL adhesive to adhere it to a scrap piece of Mellow Moss cardstock and freehanded with my paper snips around the edge. This layer is set up on dimensionals.

I really like how this color combination worked out and thanks to Jackie for suggesting it!

August 26, 2007

Rockin' Around the Christmas Tree

Today I spent the day with my mom getting some cards ready for some holiday events I have coming up. I learned to make this tree last year from my upline. The card was presented at a Stampin' Up! Regional event. I didn't get to use this card at any classes or events last year since I was so new and just starting out with Stampin' Up! I however filed the directions away and when I needed to make some Christmas cards I pulled it out. My mom and sister had gotten some Wintergreen paper and my mom and I played around with it today. We already decided we have to order some more. All of the cards use the same layout with a tree fashioned out of Wintergreen paper. This first card uses a Soft Sky base and is layered with Always Artichoke, Certainly Celery and Whisper White. The stem is from Bravo Burgundy. I stamped the sentiment from Punch Pals and added a Ice Rhinestone brad to the top of the tree for some decoration. The inside is stamped in Always artichoke as well and says "From our house to yours", which is also from Punch Pals. I used my stamp-a-ma-jig to line up the sentiments on both the inside and outside of the card.

This second card uses Sage Shadow as the base of the card and the sentiments are stamped in Mellow Moss. The card is on a 4 1/4 X 5 1/2 inch base. The Always Artichoke layer is 4 5/8" X 3 5/8" and the Whisper White layer is 4 1/2" X 3 1/2". The tree trunk is a 1/2" X 1 1/2" piece of Bravo Burgundy.

This last card has a Certainly Celery cardstock base. All in all we got 4 each made of the 3 cards before we moved onto other projects. We had a nice quiet afternoon while Daddy and Papa took the boys to the park and ran a few errands. We also covered Picture frames from the Target $1 spot that need to be embellished and have a cute idea for Christmas Tree Ornaments. I just have to figure out how to seal the ink onto the ornament as they are smearing a bit at this point in time.

Here is a profile of the tree so that you can see the dimension it has. They are so easy to make my mom is deciding if she is going to make these for her Christmas cards this year and she makes about 150 cards or more each year.

Lastly here are the folding diagrams if you are interested in trying out the card for yourself. You will need 4 squares measuring 3", 2 1/2", 2" and 1 1/2". Fold corner to corner to make a triangle and do the same for the other side. Then fold directly down the middle (see folds marked 1, 2 and 3). Next flip in the corners as shown in the 2nd picture. Finally fold down the front two sides toward the middle to make your tree 3 dimensional.

August 25, 2007

25,000 Hits Blog Candy

I can't believe I have so many hits already! I have some neat surprises in store for you. One of the items the winner will receive is the Daily Note Pad holder from my tutorial below! I also have some scrapbooking embellishments, Designer Series Paper and some retired Organdy Ribbon from Stampin' Up! that the winner will receive. All you have to do to enter to win is post in the comment section your favorite Stampin' Up! color combination. If you want two chances to win, complete my Daily Note Holder Tutorial and post the results in the thread below this one and you will be added into the mix twice. I will use to pick the winner on Thursday August 30th. Good Luck!


Daily Notes Holder Tutorial

As promised I took step by step pictures of my Daily Notes Holder so that you can complete one on your own. If I had a video camera that could take quality pictures I could have added that for you. I guess I can ask Roger to buy one. *wink* However, I think that video tutorials are not allowed by Stampin' Up!

Office Max Scratch Pad
Small Pen
Cardstock cut to 5 1/4" X 7 5/8"
Designer Series Paper cut to 3 1/8" X 23/4"
Sticky Strip
Bone Folder
Scrap cardstock for decorations

I hope you enjoyed this tutorial. If you have any questions please feel free to contact me, by clicking on the link in the right had side of the tool bar. I'd love to see your version of the Daily Notes Pad Holder. Just post the link to your creation in the comments section of this post.

August 24, 2007

Experiencing Technical Difficulties

Yesterday we had several Thunderstorms come through out area, flooding our neighborhood, taking out flag poles, privacy fences and trees. We even ended up in the basement for a bit when the Tornado sirens sounded and a storm was showing severe rotation in the clouds. A few power surges later and our desktop hard drive got zapped and bit the dust. Unfortunately that means that my computer I use to download camera images is being restored at this point in time so I don't know if I'll be able to get a card up today or not. Sadly I lost my pictures I took of Colin on his first day of school this year. Our computer backs everything up to an external hard drive at midnight but the storms hit around 8:30 pm. We got 3 inches of rain and are expecting the same today. Many schools are closed due to extensive storm damage and luckily we escaped most of it, some of our neighbors are not so lucky.

Tomorrow I plan to make up for a lack of a project today with a tutorial on how to make my Daily Notes pad with pen. Cross your fingers that everything works out and have a great Friday!


August 23, 2007

Do I hear Thunder?

Today started out as a nice steamy 96 degree day and I think I saw on the Weather Channel that we hit a record high. Right now we are sitting in the nice confines of our paritally finished basement because the wind is whipping against the windows and Colin thinks a tornado is coming because he heard one mentioned on the television. There is a tornado spotted but it is about 35 miles north of us and we seem to be at the tip of the storms.

I started to stamp yesterday and I actually ended up ditching my first attempt at the SCS Sketch Challenge. I don't know if it was the colors I chose, but the layout just wasn't working for me. I was going to attempt to do it again this afternoon, but luck wasn't on my side.

We got home from picking up Colin at preschool and Evan was asleep so Colin and I headed out to try to get the lawn cut before our yard turned into a prairie. I did cut the lawn before we went on vacation but for some reason the 6 or so inches of rain mixed with sunshine while we were gone made the lawn go wild. Colin painted on the sidewalk with his crayola sidewalk paint and got more on himself than on the actual sidewalk. He told me that his glasses and watch were a "true work of art" to quote him. They were and it took me a while to wash them off as I gave him a bath. I did have a tragic lawnmower accident that Colin will probably tell everyone for the next few days. Apparently while we were gone a rabbit had a litter of bunnies in a nice size hole in our lawn that was well concealled. That is all of the details I will give, but after a lot of crying and Roger having to come home to help for a bit we are much calmer here. Although Colin did tell me that "Today is the day you killed the Easter bunny". I guess that is one holiday he won't believe in at the ripe age of 4 1/2. I have also sworn off cutting the lawn for a while and will let Roger take over.

I made this card yesterday and it follows Beate's Weekend Sketch Challenge. Since I was gone all weekend I decided to try it out. I used some retired stamps that I have in my closet that belong to my sister-in-law. Since moving she doesn't seem to want them to move into her condo and said something about lack of space. I couldn't let the stamps feel neglected so I pulled them out. When she mounted her stamps she didn't include the name of the set on the side of all of the cases. I know I used Oriental Paintings and a Bamboo background stamp, but the name is missing on the case. I also used some Basic Gray paper I got from Wish RAK on SCS with Basic Gray, Basic Black, Shimmery White and Real Red. I also used some retired Black Organdy Ribbon and my metallic pencils. This was the first time I colored with these pencils and I obviously have to practice to get any type of technique down.

I'll leave you with a picture of the storms rolling in.

August 22, 2007

Dare to be Fabulous!

I am home from vacation and we are jumping head on right into the school year. Colin had his 1st day of his second year of preschool today and I can tell he is happy to be back with his friends. He isn't talking my ear off nearly as much as he normally does. Evan is still adjusting to the time change and was up before 6 am this morning. All in all we had a good time, but I am glad to be home with no airplane rides in our immediate future, as a family at least. For those of you who have braved two hour flights with young children you must know what this is like. Colin loved the entire trip, but melted down near the end after many early mornings and late evenings without nearly enough sleep. Evan was not too thrilled with take offs and landings and we rode on 4 seperate planes so we had our share of those. I'll be sure to share a few pictures here and there as the week goes on. I am downloading them all right now and hopefully I can get prints soon to start my vacation scrapbook. We spent several days in South Tahoe, California, Reno and Carson City, Nevada and ended up in Truckee, California after a house fire burnt down about 15 acres of forest and closed the roads around the lake. We also took a Gondola ride up the side of the moutains to 9,000 + feet.

I made this card before I left for vacation. Roger was running a few last minute errands and the kids were asleep. I had to stamp at least one more card before I called it quits for almost a week. This uses the colors from Color Combo 127, which was Blue Bayou, Chocolate Chip and Sahara Sand and uses the same sketch as in my post before vacation. I used Fabulous Flowers to make this card and outlined each petal in Dazzling Diamonds Glitter. The glitter does not photograph well at all, but I promise it looks fabulous in real life.

Stamps: Fabulous Flowers, All in a Row
Cardstock: Chocolate Chip, Blue Bayou (regular and textured), Sahara Sand
Ink: Blue Bayou. Chocolate Chip
Accessories: Blue Bayou Double Stitched ribbon, 2 Way Glue, Dazzing Diamonds, Ticket Corner Punch, Dimensionals

August 15, 2007

A True Outlaw and Vacation Break

I had to get one more post in before I left for vacation and it is going to have to be a quick one as the kids are screaming and we have to get a few things to finish packing. I stole away for a few minutes to try out the Sketch Challenge today at SCS. We will be back late Tuesday evening and Colin starts school again the very next day. As soon as we are settled in I know I will be dying to hit my stamping room again.

Have a fabulous week and I'll see you all soon!

Stamps: True Friend, Boho Friend Wheel

Cardstock: Chocolate Chip, Outlaw Designer Series Paper, Really Rust, Creamy Caramel, Sage Shadow, Shimmery White

Ink: Chocolate Chip, Really Rust, Old Olive

Accessories: Crop-a-Dile, White Grosgrain Ribbon, Photo Corner Punch, Vintage Brads, 1/16" hole punch, Dimensionals

August 14, 2007

Simple Pleasures

I actually sat down today and started a scrapbook page. I am so rusty in my scrapbooking skills. I got this layout from Scrap Maps and went from there. The only 12 X 12 cardstock I have is the textured InColors so that is how I picked my color scheme. I used some Soft Sky designer series paper, Jumbo Outline Alphabet, Big Deal Alphabet and Define Your Life.

I took these pictures the other day on one of the cooler days we have had this summer and when we actually got to play outside. Colin and Evan had fun splashing in their swimming pool. I used the Simple Definition from Define Your Life and stamped in Wild Wasabi. The Outline Alphabet is stamped in Basic Gray and cut out. The & sign is from Big Deal Alphabet and is stamped in Blue Bayou.

Would you believe this took me most of the day? I really need to work on my scrapbooking a tad more so it gets to be an easier process for me. I am finally getting around to organizing my pictures in Fotki and I plan to actually have some printed out when I get back from vacation.

My journaling block says:
This summer has
been so very hot.
We have not had
much time to
play outside
in the pool,
but on a
rare occassion,
water play can
bring such
simple pleasures.
Simple Pleasures
August 2007

August 13, 2007

View Finder without a View

Today I got another shipment from UPS and in it was my True Friend stamp set. I am really loving these die cut stamps. They assemble in no time at all and I was stamping right away. I decided to try out the View Finder card as part of the SCS Try a New Technique Challenge. The tutorial is here.

However I went wrong somewhere along the way and my card doesn't really have a working view finder. I will have to try it out again in the near future as it is a neat technique. I used Chocolate Chip, Really Rust, Creamy Caramel, Sage Shadow, Whisper White and Outlaw Designer Series Paper. Now this is my kind of color scheme. I sanded the edges of the designer series paper with my sanding blog to distress them a bit. I also added metallic eyelets that set so well with my Crop-a-Dile and strung hemp twine through them and added a piece of HodgePodge Hardware. The flower is stamped in Tempting Turquoise and Old Olive and is surrounded by a Scallop circle that was punched out with the 1 3/8" circle punch. The entire layer is set up on dimensionals.

Featured Stamper: Jen70

Yesterday was the Featured Stamper Challenge over on SCS. After the kids went to bed I decided to stamp a bit more. I picked a card - this one, to be exact and then I decided to push myself a bit farther. I decided to use a color I am not that comfortable with. I am more of a earthy tones girl, not a purple girl. So I chose Lavendar Lace as the base of my card. I stamped the largest firework looking flower from In the Spotlight in Almost Amethyst onto it. I then used a piece of Basic Gray and added the scallop border with my Slit Punch as my corner rounder is retired, but I did get the brand new one today from UPS! I then stamped All in a Row in Whisper White craft ink on the scallops instead of adding eyelets like Jen did. I also chose not to use the scallop punch and cut out flowers in Lavendar Lace and Green Galore instead. This is by far not one of my favorite cards, but I decided to post it anyway. I am sure I have readers who like purple. It is just not my color of choice.

August 12, 2007

Birthday Wishes

This is one of the first weekends we have had two days to spend at home. We planned on having a lazy weekend, but as things always happen we tend to do a bit more than we planned. Yesterday the kids did get to spend a bit of time in their blow up pool, but it was too hot to even be out in the water. We also ran our normal errands and we watched Flushed Away as a family. Colin told us it was funny, but we shouldn't get it again. I'm not sure what that means but he must not have been too thrilled with it.

This morning we planned to go to the Pancake breakfast that was a fundraiser for Colin's school and from there go to church. Evan ended up making a total mess of his clothes so Roger took him home to change while I took Colin to church. He wanted to see all of his friends at children's church and like me he doesn't like to walk in late for anything. Afterwards I scrubbed down my house like a mad woman. I don't like the idea of having to come home from vacation and clean, so I'm on a good start to that. Now I just have to be organized enough to get all of the clothes washed and packed before we have to go. Needless to say I will still forget something along the way and we'll have to run out and buy something when we get to our destination. It never fails.

I needed a stamping breaks so I sat down to make this card for Lauren's Sketch Challenge. I wanted to use my Outlaw Designer Series paper and from there I picked my color scheme (Chocolate Chip, Creamy Caramel, Not Quite Navy, Sage Shadow and Whisper White) for my cardstock. I am not good at making many masculine cards so I decided to challenge myself to do just that. I think it has a pretty masculine feel to it. Especially since I don't have any masculine stamp sets.

The creamy caramel layer is stamped with the paisley from Polka Dots and Paisley, then with Adia Cloth. I wanted a distressed feel so after I inked up my stamp in Creamy Caramel I went and hit my stamp with some smudges of Close to Cocoa and then sponged the edges after I had stamped the cloth background. Finally I distressed the edges with my Cutter's Tool kit. That tool is a must have in my book. I have to reach for it all of the time. To break up the stripes in the designer series paper I folded over 1/4" border at the top and stamped All in a Row in Sage Shadow. The other layers are pretty self explanatory. I stamped in Timber Brown Stazon images from Double Line Doodles and colored them in with my AquaPainter with Really Rust, Not Quite Navy, Sage Shadow and Creamy Caramel. To finish it off I stamped Birthday Wishes which are both from Fundamental Phrases and added some hemp twine and a piece of HodgePodge Hardware.

Now I can hopefully relax a bit before Monday hits and everything gets crazy again.


August 11, 2007

Butterfly Garden

I've mentioned over the last week that we are taking a family vacation. We are going to visit my great uncle who lives in Reno, but we are actually staying at my parent's time share in South Tahoe. The vacation has been in the planning for months and for whatever reason I didn't think to check school schedules before we decided to go away. I just thought of that a few day ago, and of course we are flying back on the first day of school. Colin doesn't seem too upset that he will miss his 1st day back, but I feel like this is something I should have looked into months ago. Oh, well.

After going to pay our first months preschool tution we ran a few errands, went out to lunch and I got a head start on dinner before I sat down to do Jen's sketch challenge. I love her blog i {heart} 2 stamp, and you can often find a sketch challenge here on weekends. I knew I wanted to use Soft Sky and Basic Gray. I mentioned that it is now my favorite neutral, but I can't say that it replaces Chocolate Chip for me yet, but maybe it will.

I started with a Close to Cocoa base and then I have a layer of Groovy Guava over that and I stamped it with Adia Cloth. I then layered Basic Black and Soft Sky and used the largest swirl in Priceless to stamp a pattern onto the layer. From there I used Basic Gray and Soft Sky designer series paper and I added a row of vintage brads to the left hand side of this layer. After I had all of these layers together I used SNAIL to adhere them together. I then took my Crop-a-Dile on settings A1 to dry emboss the 3 dots above and below the Soft Sky designer series paper layer. Lastly I added the Groovy Guava butterflies onto my Whisper White layer that is matted on Basic Black. I stamped them twice onto the layer and then twice onto a piece of scrap paper. I added the sentiment in Close to Cocoa. I used my paper snips to cut the two scrap butterflies out and then folded them in the middle to make them have a bit of dimension. I adhered them with a glue line that I found at Michael's. It works much like the glue dots, but comes in strips that are nice and skinny. I think it works pretty well for the small bodies of the butterflies. When I had them in place I pressed them onto the paper with my tweezers to make the wings pop.

All in all I am very pleased with this card. I love the colors together and it all fell so nicely together.

August 10, 2007

A new bag of tricks!

We all know that a certain blogger has gotten us all hooked on the All in a Row stamp set *wink*. But I always use the same argyle stamp out of the set to make "faux" stitching.
Well tonight I was working on another card for Beate's Weekend Sketch Challenge and I had a wonderful idea! Who would have ever guessed that. LOL! I knew I wanted to try out the sketch with my Garden Whimsy stamp set and I had heard wonderful things about the Jumbo Outline Alphabet and Fundamental Phrases used together. I wasn't lucky enough to attend convention, so I didn't get to see all of the great samples with those two sets. I figured I could come up with something all on my own. So after finishing the Garden Whimsy part of my card and still needing another element I decided to make a scallop with "friend" on it.

This is when my genius moment happened. My scallop looked too plain with the whisper white cardstock, but it was too dark when I tried it in Purely Pomegrantate. So I decided that the scallops needed a little bit of attention. I wished for a moment that we had a scallop stamp like some of the new ones you have seen on PapertreyInk or GinaK. Little did I know that we have our very own Stampin' Up! Scallop stamp. I used All in a Row and just inked one of the small images and carefully stamped it in each scallop. It was super easy and I am probably going to be using this a lot! Now if you weren't completely hooked by Beate's use of All in a Row you have a new way to use the set too.


For You

I tend to do more Card Sketch Challenges than any out there. I like experimenting with different layouts to see which ones I like the best and sketch challenges are fun because some of the hard work is already done for me. This is for Beate's Weekend Sketch Challenge.

I had my sketch challenge in hand and I knew I wanted to use my LeJardin papers, so the card just sort of fell together from there. I used River Rock, Basic Gray (did I tell you it was my new favorite neutral?), Soft Sky and Very Vanilla along with a piece of LeJardin designer series paper. From there my stamp set of choice was very easy? Since LeJarding coordinates so well with Carte Postal I immediately reached for it. I stamped the small flower in River Rock over the base of my card. I then thought about using the other flower image in this stamp set but it didn't seem large enough for my main image panel so I grabbed the Level II hostess set Garden Silhouettes. I think that this flower image resembles Carte Postal a lot and goes very nicely with the size of the image panel.

To stamp my image I inked it up in Old Olive and Regal Rose stampin' write markers. I stamped my main image once with the freshly inked image and then twice more right after it had been stamped off. I think it has a very feminine vintage feel. I then stamped "Carte Postal" in Basic Gray and added a Photo Corner in Basic Gray cardstock. I stapled the corner on instead of using brads. I then stamped "For You" from Fundamental Phrases in Blue Bayou and then stamped off the Fluer de Lis (I think that is what it is, correct me if I am wrong) in River Rock before stamping it over my sentiment. I then punched it out with my 1 3/8" circle punch and layered it on a Basic Gray scallop before stapling on a piece of Basic Gray taffeta ribbon. The circles are set up on dimensionals.

I do have a few things to update today. Last week I posted my ATC box holder and a blog candy contest for those who completed the box. I got a few comments on liking the tutorial, but no completed boxes. I will save my blog candy and post it while I am on vacation. That way you will get some of my overloaded supplies and I'll have some cleaned up stamping space when I get home. LOL!

Secondly, someone asked if the Control Freak swap cards are posted online anywhere. ChiChi Allen has some of the Fall-Winter Preview Swaps posted on her blog. Here is the card I made for the swap. I also know that in the past the swap cards have been posted on SUDSOL. You can find that by clicking on the blinkie in my sidebar. You do have to be a member to view the gallery, but it is a great tool for Stampin' Up! Demonstrators. Most of the swap cards are posted by the Control Freaks swap members in their SCS galleries too! So they are out there for all of you to see.


August 9, 2007

Let It Snow!

The heat and humidity here is just awful. It has been in the 90's and it feels like you step into a sauna the moment you open the door or go outside. We have been spending a great deal of time indoors. The kids break into a sweat from only being outside and not even exerting themselves. They want a drink as soon as we get out and then we have to treck right back in. I know it's summer and with summer there is warm weather, but this is getting to be old already. So to cool off I made a cute little chilly Christmas card.
As soon as I saw the sketch challenge on SCS I knew what set I wanted to use. I love my scallop punch and I have to pull it out on a daily basis just because I now own one. I used Punch Pals and All in a Row for the card. The Wild Wasabi and Purely Pomegrante is textured cardstock. I layered Basic Gray under the Pomegranate and I am in love with this gray color. It goes so well with everything. I used the Basic Gray ink to add my "faux" stitching to the edges of my cardstock. I really like this effect. Unlike Beate I wasn't brave enough to do the stamping around the curve of my cut on my Soft Sky Designer series paper.
I love that the Punch Pals set works with so many of the punches I own. As you see I have used my Scallop Punch, 1 1/4" cirlce Punch, 3/4" circle punch and Word Window. The images also coordinate with the tag punch, Three for You punch box and many others. I used a lot of colors with my AquaPainter to color in the penguin, trees and presents. The main colors for the penguin were Going Gray and Basic Gray. I was afraid he'd look too drab, but I wanted a more realistic penguin for this card.
It's been a long day and I'm looking forward to some fun stamping day ahead. I finished both of my Control Freaks swaps and have them boxed up and ready to go. I stamped 87 cards if I remember correctly. It is a HUGE box, but I had fun. But now that I have my obligations complete I can stamp just for me again. It is a huge relief to have them done before we head out on vacation next week.
I might now be able to post while on vacation. I'm not planning on taking my laptop and I don't know what type of computer situation I have available, so I may be MIA. I promise to update until we leave though.

August 7, 2007

Trick or Treat

I decided to play around a bit more with my possible swap cards and I think I have a finalist! On the first card I thought I may have needed to add a few more pumpkins, so I stamped the pumpkin 3 times onto the main image panel. I colored in my pumpkin with my Pumpkin Pie, Chocolate Chip and Old Olive Stampin' Write Markers. I added the bat in Basic Black and kept the layout and color scheme exactly the same as in my last post. I did add a bit of Apple Cider paper to the More Mustard strip. However I wasn't completely sold on my swap card and I thought I might change things up a bit.
I took a break, fed the kids lunch and then returned to the coolness of our basement which doubles as my stamping space and the kids playroom. I played around with a few different color combinations until I got one that I thought both worked with the Apple Cider Designer Series Paper and that had a Halloween feel to it.

I think that this is going to be my swap card and I am really happy with this card. I started with a Not Quite Navy cardstock base and stamped the polka dot from the Three For You Punch Box in Not Quite Navy and used the same ink to stamp the Happy Halloween sentiment at the bottom of the card. The strip across the middle is made with Apple Cider paper and Elegant Eggplant cardstock and I tied a bow with Pumpkin Pie grosgrain ribbon. The main image panel is made with Basic Black, Pumpkin Pie and Very Vanilla cardstock. I cut my main image panel larger than I needed it, stamped my bat in the corner and then cut the image down with my paper cutter until I got to the bat's wing. Then I used my paper snips to cut around the wing so that it sticks over the edge of the layers below it. I stamped my Pumpkins as I have been on my last few cards. The largest pumpkin is cut out and popped up on a dimensional.
I don't know about you, but I am great at smearing my white craft ink. It's probably because I am impatient adn try to move on too quickly and I don't give it enough time to dry. However, I decided I'd use my crystal clear embossing powder and emboss the "Boo" sentiment. It looks so nice and shiny in real life. Now it's just down to finalizing my card and actually committing to making 37 of them by next Thursday. I have no clue what I am going to mail my 87 swap cards in?!?!? But I can't wait to get them back.

Peek a Boo!

I am playing around today trying to come up with my Holiday Mini swap card with my Autumn Apparitions stamp set. I know that I am going to keep the dangling "Boo" Element, but I am still playing around with the main image panel for this card. I like the layout, but there are a few things I still need to tweak. I leave a week from Thursday for vacation and I have to have my swaps done and mailed before that. Luckily I have a free weekend to work on them.
I used Old Olive for the base of the card and used the same color ink with my Autumn Leaves wheel. The left hand side of the card has Basic Black and More Mustard cardstock and is stamped with the Polka dot from the Three for You Punch Box in More Mustard. The main image panel uses Basic Black, Really Rust and Very Vanilla cardstock. The pumkin is stamped in Pumpkin Pie, Old Olive and Chocolate Chip ink. I did cut out the larger pumpkin and stamped a face on it before I popped it up with a dimensional. The bat is stamped in Basic black. For the sentiment I stamped in Basic Black on Very Vanilla and punched it out with my 1 1/4" circle punch before I matted it with basic black punched with my 1 3/8" circle punch and then a scallop cirlce in Really Rust. I added a silver eyelet in my main image layer and tied the sentiment on with natural hemp twine and dressed it up with a piece of pumpkin pie grosgrain ribbon.

August 6, 2007

One Sketch Endless Possibilities

One of my favorite challenges in making cards is to do Card Sketches. A sketch is simply a layout that can be modified in many ways to change the feeling of a card. You can add additional layers, embellishments or anything you desire to make the sketch your own. This sketch is from CPS and is sketch #25. The bottom card is the one I did orignally and the top card is one in which I added another layer to the card to change it up a bit.

The first card uses Soft Sky cardstock and designer prints double sided paper from Stampin' Up!, as well as Basic Gray and Shimmery White cardstock. I used Soft Sky ink for my background stamping with the smallest flower in Double Line Doodles. The larger flower is stamped in Jetblack Stazon as is the stem. I used my AquaPainter and Regal Rose classic ink to color in the image. After it was blended the way I liked I used a drop of Regal Rose ink from the reinker to make the outline stand out a bit more. The stem is colored in Wild Wasabi and uses the same technique as the flowers. I added some paper piercing, Basic Gray taffeta ribbon, my ticket corner punch, white gel pen, 1/16" hole punch and silver Vintage brads. I love the Basic Gray, Soft Sky and Regal Rose color combination.

The second card has a completely different color scheme and feel to it. I used my Baroque Motifs stamp set and stayed with the sketch a little more as it was drawn. The cardstock is Chocolate Chip, Always Artichoke, Brocade Backgrounds designer series paper and Very Vanilla Cardstock. I used Close to Cocoa and All in a Row for my faux stitching. The sentiment and background is stamped in Always Artichoke ink. To make the flowers stand out a bit more I used Not Quite Navy and Pumpkin Pie. Vintage Brads are used in the center of each flower and they are popped up on dimensionals.

Now I challenge you to see how many possibilities you can come up with one card sketch. I could keep going, but unfortunately I have to cook dinner. I will try to make a some more cards later tonight.


August 4, 2007

Happy Halloween!

Halloween has to be one of my favorite holidays, next to Thanksgiving. What is better than walking door to door and getting free candy and goodies. Now that I have two young boys they can collect the candy for me! Hahahaha!
I am playing around with my newest stamp set that will not be available until September 1st in the Holiday Mini Collection. It is called Autumn Apparations and happens to be the set I signed up in my latest Control Freaks Swap. I can "see" the possibility of making this my swap card, but the cutting is a little intensive. I'll continue to play around until I make my final decision.
The colors on this card remind me so much of fall and I see my next few orders being for a lot of Earth Elements cardstock. Number 1 on that order is going to be some more of the fabulous textured cardstock. Anyway, the colors I used for cardstock are Old Olive, Basic Black, More Mustard, Really Rust, Very Vanilla and a nice tiny piece of Apple Cider Designer Series Paper. Why so tiny? Simply because I can only Preorder 1 of each item from the Holiday Mini Collection and if I turn this into a 37 person swap I like to be able to put all of the same paper on my cardfronts.
I got this sketch from this week's sketch on Card Positioning Systems and it is sketch #24. I absolutely LOVE this sketch and I can see myself referring back to it a lot. I wheeled my Autumn Leaves wheel in Old Olive on my cardstock base, used Polka Dots on my More Mustard layer in the same color ink, and stamped Happy Halloween in Basic Black. The cat is also stamped in Basic black and is cut out like the pumkin and popped up on dimensionals. I did color my pumpkin with my Stampin' Write Markers in Old Olive and Pumpkin Pie so that I could use two different colors.
Well it's about time to make dinner. Have a nice relaxing Saturday. We are taking full advantage of this "cold" front before it gets back to 94 tomorrow.

August 3, 2007

Absolutely Fabulous

I just got around to doing another Dare To Get Dirty Challenge over at SCS. They challenges are up until late August, so if you missed any, and I certainly did, there is still time to complete them and check out the fabulous gallery along with it. This is for Lauren's aka MyTime sketch challenge. I had started out on a completely different route and when it came time to assemble my card I changed the image panel. I had tried to use In the Spotlight but it just wasn't working for me. I think it was too busy and I tend to lean towards nice and neat. My carstock is Wild Wasbi, Very Vanilla, River Rock and Blue Bayou textured cardstock. I used Purely Pomegranate for the flowers. I am so happy with my new punch box, I can already tell I will be using it a lot.
I stamped the dot from the Three for You Punch Box in Wild Wasabi and then opted for the smaller Polka Dots from the new background in River Rock. I then stamped the flower from Heartfelt Thanks in Groovy Guava, used a baby wipe to clean off the stem and then used my Wild Wasabi stampin' spot to ink the stem. The 2 step coordinating stamp is in Purely Pomegranate and I should have used my Baby wipe again and a deeper green color, but I will if I remake the card. Then I'd probably use Old Olive or Always Artichoke to color the tiny stem in. The sentiment is from Absolutely Fabulous and I adore that stamp set. The script and sayings are just perfect. To give my flowers more dimension I punched them out, stabbed them in the center with my stylus and then added a touch of white gel pen before I used glue dots to adhere them to the card. I really like this color combo and layout so I am sure I will be using it again.
PS. I couldn't just leave you with my CASE'd cards so you lucked out with a few projects today.

One for Me and Three for You

Mr. Brown arrived at my house this afternoon with some new goodies for me. I wanted to dig right in and stamp something and I wanted some examples that showcased exactly what was in the Three For You Punch box. Since Stampin' Up! was so kind to do some of the hard work for us I decided to CASE thier samples. Let me tell you that they are so much cuter in real life than on the website. These little 3 X 3 Love Notes come FREE with the punch box in the month of August and they are so pretty. The textured cardstock is so amazing and I am really pleased with it. I ordered one package to check it out and I know I'm going to have to order more because it gives your cards so much more definition.

I love these cards so much I think I am going to incorporate them into my class on Sunday along with my 3D project. Besides the contents of the Three For You Punch Box the Wild Wasabi card also makes use of a staple, vintage brad and Blue Bayou Ribbon. The Purely Pomegranate card uses the 1" circle punch, a staple and the Crafter's Tool Kit. The So Saffron card uses a staple and a white gel pen.

Off to play some more! Have a great weekend.


August 2, 2007

Box Tutorial and Blog Candy

I felt so bad for not posting yesterday that I decided turn my version of the ATC Box into a tutorial for all of you. I was stamping away to get my 1st set of swap cards done before my preorder arrives tomorrow so I can get started on the second set. I can't wait to have a chance to play with my new Punch Box and Autumn Apparations stamp set.

First you will need the following supplies:
1 piece of cardstock 4 1/2" X 5 3/4" for the bottom of the box
1 piece of cardstock 8 1/8" X 5 3/4" for the top
1 piece designer series paper the same measurements as the top (optional)
Paper trimmer
Scoring Tool
Sticky Strip
Stamps and Embellishments for the top

Using your paper trimmer and your 5 3/4" by 4 1/2" piece of paper score each side of the paper at 1".

Clip the inside corners to make the box flaps.

Trim a little bit off of each corner so that when you fold your box the tops line up evenly. About 1/16" to 1/8" is perfect.

Use your bone folder to fold all of the creases.

Adhere sticky strip to the flaps.

Form the bottom of your box

Score your piece of cardstock for the top at 1/2", 1 9/16", 4 5/16" and 5 3/8". Use your bone folder to crease all of your score lines

Adhere your designer series paper to your top and rescore. Glue sticks work the best as glue gives the most when folding.

Add a strip of sticky strip to your top and form your box.

Decorate the top with a piece of ribbon and a tag.

I would love to see your version of the ATC box. Simply post your creations in the comment area. I will leave this open until next Friday and I will use to pick one person to send a surprise to in the mail.

Have fun creating!