Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Birdie Bling

The Colour Queen is celebrating one year of challenges, so Arielle has a challenge that's too fun to resist this week: make a card with this sketch and your favorite challenge from the past year! I picked this color combo that I wanted to play with back in August but I was just too busy that week.
With this combo I wanted something cute, so I pulled out the stamp set Chic Boutique. I've had it for a while but this is the first time I've made a card with it - so sad! My bird cage was colored with markers just a bit, then cut out and mounted on a poppy circle embossed with polka dots. I couldn't help but add more dots - on the saffron Play Date paper and the poppy background. I used a strip of Bashful Blue with the eyelet border punch, and the sentiment is from Curly & Cute with a flower fusion embellishment. I just love having the basic rhinestones - it's so easy to put bling wherever you want it. So of course I had to add more!
If you've never played along with the Colour Queens, you definitely should - they have awesome challenges! I can't wait to see what they have planned for their second year!

Monday, September 27, 2010

Three of Hearts

Here's a quick little post from me - I am almost done with a big freelance project so I rewarded myself with a little stamping. I loved the inspiration challenge posted yesterday at the Paper Players and thought it would be fun to see where the inspiration took me.

I first pulled out the polka dot papers in Pretty in Pink and Basic Black. Next I wanted to incorporate some punched scalloped circles, so I played with a few different possibilities before settling on this layout. I thought the punched hearts looked super cute in the centers! Now I actually had a whole stamped image planned, but I was having trouble putting it all together. In the end I liked my little heart circles more than the image I was working with, so I decided to just go with those. There had to be a bow on my card somewhere, and preferably a pink one - but to make the pink stand out I layered the taffeta ribbon onto black satin ribbon. In the center I put a big white button from my stash, with black 1/8" taffeta ribbon threaded through the holes. All it needed was a simple sentiment from Teeny Tiny Wishes and I was done!

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Just Believe for the OCC

It's my last week of hosting for Our Creative Corner - I've had a fun month and I hope you have as well! This week it's a color challenge: crumb cake, early espresso, marina mist, soft suede, and a light neutral. I took this combination from one of my son's shirts - and I just love it!

This card is actually a stepped-up version of one of the cards in my October Kit of the Month. Come back on October 1 if you want to see that. For today here are all the details. The stamp set is called Just Believe. I first took the largest image and stamped it onto Very Vanilla - first with crumb cake and then over top of that with early espresso, offset just a little bit. This is called shadow stamping. With the help of the Stamp-a-ma-Jig, I was able to get perfect placement. Behind it I put panels of Soft Suede and Early Espresso, then I distressed and sponged all the edges and used the color spritzer tool and espresso marker to add a little more texture to the main panel. Finally I took my bone folder and curled one of the corners a little bit.

The rest of the card uses one of the stamp set's sentiments, plus a large scalloped circle in Soft Suede and a 2" circle of Early Espresso. I added basic pearls to the scallops and also to the flowers on the image. Marina Mist taffeta ribbon fills in the empty space, and for the background I used a panel of Marina Mist designer paper, a Crumb Cake card based stamped tone-on-tone with one of the smaller images in Just Believe, and (although you can hardly see it) a border punched with the scalloped ribbon punch.

I hope you'll come and play with these colors along with us - and don't forget to visit the OCC blog to check out what the other team members created. Have a great weekend!

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Flower Fold Dare

I'm back with another club project for this weekend. My other club card is a little more time-intensive, and I hadn't used the Big Shot on either project, so I pulled that baby out to make a sweet and simple(r) card. I used colors from the Color Dare challenge: Tempting Turquoise, Poppy Parade, Pumpkin Pie and Not Quite Navy. The layout is from the Pals Paper Arts sketch challenge (flipped). I think these two challenges were made for each other! I'm also entering this in the second challenge at SUO Challenges, which was to use the Big Shot.

I started out by cutting a Top Note with turquoise textured card stock and embossing it with the Elegant Lines folder. Next I made my flower with the two smallest of the Flower Folds flowers, made from retired Pumpkin Pie DP and Not Quite Navy textured card stock. I punched the centers from poppy and turquoise. (I did add the background panel to the layout - my card just seemed to need something back there.) The card is finished off with poppy ribbon and a sentiment from On Your Birthday.

I'm off to clean my studio - I'll see you on Saturday for the OCC challenge - I think it's a great one to finish off my hosting month so I hope you'll come check it out!

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

What's in your wallet?

Here's a preview of one of our projects for my club this weekend. I found the instructions for this photo wallet on Splitcoast. I also followed a couple challenges: the Stampin' Royalty challenge to make anything but a card, and the Utah Divas International color challenge: Chocolate Chip, So Saffron, Real Red and Regal Rose. I used the Printed Petals stamp set and matching wheel and stamped all the panels tone on tone. The inside panels each have a space for a small photo and journaling, and it all closes up nice and neat with a belly band. Cute, eh? I hope my club gals have fun with it! I'll keep the chatter to a minimum and just show you some more photos of the inside. Thanks for stopping by!

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Long time no Splitcoast

Wow, I haven't played a challenge on SCS in ages and ages. I probably wouldn't have today if it weren't for a color challenge that I thought could work for a card I need this week: Todd and I will celebrate our 10th anniversary on Thursday. Truthfully, now that I'm finished with it... I don't think he's going to care for these colors, LOL! But I probably won't have time to make a different card this week, and I did choose the stamp set (Artistic Etchings) specifically with him in mind, since we spent two weeks in Paris a few months after we were married. The layout is from Mercy Kerin's sketch challenge.

OK, so... the colors for the challenge were Cajun Craze, Baja Breeze and Wild Wasabi. I do like them together, I think... but it wasn't the easiest combo I've ever worked with! I wanted to put the Eiffel Tower image in the oval, and at some point I hit on the idea of the sky and the grass behind it. So I brayered the Baja Breeze and Wild Wasabi onto naturals white card stock, then stamped the image on top before cutting out with Nestabilities. The wasabi DP panel comes from the Subtles pack, with extra ink sponged onto the panel for more vintage style. I made the Baja Breeze background with the medallion stamp from the same set (with more sponging, of course). I added three (retired) copper brads and used a strip of ribbon over a scalloped border from the Tasteful Trim die. Finally I layered the sentiment on a curly label - I pulled out the Vintage Labels set from Sale-a-Bration just 'cause it needed a little something extra.

It seems like everyone is pulling out great challenges this week - but I don't know if I'll have time to play along with any more of them. I'm working on club projects for Friday night and I may have to hold off on posting those... we'll see if I can make it back here before Saturday!

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Cupcake Party

Welcome to week 3 of my challenges for Our Creative Corner! This week it's a sketch challenge. I hope you'll come play along!

I wanted to do something cute for my card. I picked out the Party Hearty set with its adorable cupcake. My colors are Blushing Bride, Melon Mambo, Night of Navy, So Saffron, and white. I used DP from the In Colors hostess pack, the Brights pack, and a retired pack that I'm blanking on the name of right now... sorry! To jazz up my cupcake I gave it a stack of three party hats and some basic rhinestones, then I layered it with a saffron circle (cut with the Circle Scissors Plus) and the extra large scallop punch. The "party hearty" sentiment seemed to be the perfect one for this card, and I added a couple more rhinestones there and some navy satin ribbon to finish it all off.

Be sure you visit the OCC blog to see what else our team has created this week, and then show us your gorgeous creations as well! Have a great weekend!

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Divine Diva Inspiration Challenge #36

Welcome to this week's challenge! I have a book cover for you - I'm not much of a gardener but I did like the cover art. Give it a try for your inspiration and join us!

I took a sort of free approach to the colors for this one - I made a list of the basic colors (blue, purple, yellow/orange) and picked the shades I liked best together. I disregarded the dark green border and pulled out Basic Black, Whisper White, Daffodil Delight, Rich Razzleberry, Baja Breeze and Not Quite Navy. Whew, that's a lot of colors! The layout is from the sketch challenge on the SU demo-only site Stampin' Connection.

Now you're probably thinking my card doesn't look a whole lot like the book... I'm telling you, I don't know when I've had so much trouble with a challenge! I must have tried 10 different things. Hours later, this is what I ended up with. It's a big card - 5 x7. The main image comes from Razzle Dazzle, and I colored it with markers. I used the Circle Scissors Plus and the large scalloped square die for my cutting, plus a square of retired Razzleberry Lemonade paper. The sentiment is from the hostess set Because I Care, and the flowers were made with the Blossom Party die. In the center I put a retired Baja Breeze corduroy button and one of the large pearls from the (again... retired) Pretties Kit. The black background was embossed with one of the texture plates - if you're doing a larger project and want dry embossing, these are your go-to tool because they're so big. You probably can't see it unless you click to enlarge the photo, but it's there! Anyway... can you see my blood, sweat and tears? LOL. This might be one for the record books!

Be sure to check out the cards made by all the Divine Divas for this challenge!

Anne

Chris

Donna

Julie

Kerri

Hope you are inspired to come and play along. Just leave a comment here with a link to your card. We can't wait to see what you create! The keyword for uploading on online forums will be DDIC36. Have fun and look for the next challenge on October 7!

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

I'm a bad, bad stamper

I am so incredibly busy that I shouldn't be taking time to play challenges... but I just loved the colors in this week's Colour Q challenge: Cherry Cobbler, Peach Parfait, Pear Pizzazz, Early Espresso, and white. The layout is from Mercy Kerin's latest sketch challenge, which was a really fun sketch to work with.

When I was choosing which stamp set to use, I knew I wanted some kind of flower stamp. It occurred to me while looking through my stamps that I just don't get enough chances to use all these wonderful stamp sets. Plus I get so focused on using brand-new stuff that I forget about all those other stamps! So I'm giving myself the challenge to pull out some current stamps that haven't seen ink in a while instead of excluding them and using only new stamps. Let's see how this goes, shall we?

For today's card I chose the set Vintage Vogue. I stamped three flowers and a bunch of leaves on a white panel, added the sentiment from the hostess set Occasional Quotes, and then cut out my panel using the out of the box technique. The flower centers were punched from espresso card stock. I used two panels from the hostess paper pack - lots of great prints in the In Colors - and cut my circles with the Circle Scissors Plus. Tip of the day: The hostess papers are only 6x6, which makes it tough to cut out the circles, so I firmly taped the sheet to the glass mat with scotch tape. It peeled right off when I was done and I got a perfect circle.

I wanted to do something different for the punched border that Mercy had on her sketch. The SU crochet trims in Very Vanilla didn't work for this card, so I pulled something white from my stash and used it for my "scalloped" border. The bottom of the card looked really naked so I added a couple more flowers cascading down and an espresso button with a little bit of peach ribbon. Don't laugh - I actually sewed the button onto the ribbon! Yes, I can actually sew on a button reasonably well, even though I say I don't sew. Don't expect me to be getting any fancier than this with a needle and thread!

Saturday, September 11, 2010

Fun with Folds

Well, I guess I didn't get back to stamping quite like I was hoping. The kids went back to school and in many other ways it was just a crazy week. But I do have my card for my second week of hosting at Our Creative Corner. This week I'm challenging everyone to do something fun with folds - make a card with an unusual fold or include something folded on your project.

I have to admit that I feel like a real dork when I struggle with a challenge that I came up with in the first place! I had trouble deciding what to do with my card, and then once I figured that out, I still struggled with the stamping. I like how it turned out, though - it just ended up a bit simple because I ran out of time!

Anyway, here's the card. The folded square idea I came up with myself - but I'm probably not the first person to do it. I chose a sheet from the Play Date designer paper and made sure to pick one with a nice pattern on both sides so the fold would show both. To get the pattern to match up correctly, first cut a 4" square, then cut that into four 2" squares. I laid them out how they would be assembled, then folded up one corner and matched the other three corners to expose a diamond in the center. The stripes were useful in making sure my folds were straight and also in lining up the four squares. I taped them together for placement before I adhered them to the Chocolate Chip layer. I guess you could do this with a craft knife so that you wouldn't see the seams between the squares, but I usually can't be bothered to go to that much trouble, LOL! And honestly I think the seams look worse in the photo than they do IRL.

The stamps I used come from the hostess set Cute by the Inch. I was able to make a nice medallion in the center by using my Stamp-a-ma-Jig and one of the stamps - even though I have these in clear-mount, I couldn't be quite precise enough for my taste without it. The "friends" stamp then went on top with dimensionals. I didn't have a lot more room on my card so I just finished off with a scallop border made from the Tasteful Trim die - after I got my die-cut strip, I cut it in half to make two narrow border strips. At the bottom I added three (retired) Old Olive buttons threaded with tiny strips of white card stock.

I hope you'll find a fun way to use folding this week and play along with our challenge - and be sure you check out what the rest of the OCC gals have done this time around. They never disappoint! Thanks for stopping by today!

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Stamp set giveaway!

Here's a special offer just from me for the month of September. Place an order with me (not associated with club or a workshop) by September 30 and you'll be entered in a drawing to win this retired hostess set, Of the Earth. This set is brand new and is wood mount style. You can either contact me or place your order directly through my SU site. This offer is only good for customers in the U.S. Thanks for your support and good luck to everyone!

Monday, September 6, 2010

Divine Diva Inspiration Challenge #34 rewind

So I'm back from vacation, and looking forward to getting back to stamping! There is one little thing I need to take care of first, though... Remember the DDIC post where I forgot to include my card photo? Oh, so embarrassing. Well, here it is. I won't put all my chatter back in a second time, but you can click the link to read it!

Saturday, September 4, 2010

ABCs and 123s

All this month I'll be the hostess for the challenges at Our Creative Corner. I think I have some fun stuff in store so I hope you'll come check it out! To kick off the month, I'm celebrating the fact that my kids will finally be starting back to school in a few days. Here in New England we start later than most of the rest of you so I'm a bit behind. Anyway, the challenge is to feature letters and/or numbers prominently on your card or project. I can't wait to see what you all come up with!

This is probably one of those cards that if I showed it to Todd, he would have some smart-aleck comment about why all those different letters mean "thank you" - I confess that I thought long and hard about what sort of sentiment to use, but I think for some reason this one works. I did have this card by Brandi Wiggins (a fellow So Shelli contest winner! yay!) in mind when I thought of using Broadsheet Alphabet on my card. It was quite easy to take letters and fit them as closely together as possible on one large clear block, then I just colored them with markers.

The color combination came about in a random way - I looked through my markers to find colors I hadn't used recently and laid them out to see if I thought they looked good together. I used Soft Suede, Daffodil Delight, Poppy Parade and Pacific Point. I wasn't sure if I was going to like the combo, but since I had prearranged my stamps I could color them once to test it out and then clean them all at the same time. And you know, it's probably one of my wackier combos but I happen to like it! To finish I added a panel of poppy designer paper (from the hostess pack, which is a must-have), a sentiment from A Word for You, and two word window tabs in Soft Suede with daffodil brads.

Be sure you go and visit the OCC blog to see what the rest of the team has done for the challenge, and then come and play along with us! We always love to see what you create!

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Divine Diva Inspiration Challenge #35

It's a brand new month and time for another inspiration challenge! Can you tell I'm starting to think of fall colors? I loved the textures in this photo - it was from a catalog, maybe Sundance? Anyway, I hope you find something here that inspires you.

I picked my color palette from some of the colors that jumped out at me: Baja Breeze, Cajun Craze, Early Espresso, Pear Pizazz and So Saffron. I think this combo captures the same softness the photo has. I chose an image from the hostess set Fast and Fabulous and colored it in a sketchy style with markers. To add some texture I embossed pear card stock with a texture plate and sponged espresso ink over it. The background uses the new stamp Teahouse, which is gorgeous. It's done in Baja Breeze with extra ink sponged on top of the whole panel, and then I went back in with the espresso and dirtied just the edges (as I did with everything else). I kept the accents simple: three Cajun Craze brads, a border done with the eyelet punch, and a sentiment from Occasional Quotes.

Be sure to check out the cards made by all the Divine Divas for this challenge!

Anne

Chris

Donna

Julie

Kerri (sitting out this week)

Hope you are inspired to come and play along. Just leave a comment here with a link to your card. We can't wait to see what you create! The keyword for uploading on online forums will be DDIC35. Have fun and look for the next challenge on September 16!

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Out with the old and in with the new

Just a quick business-related post while I'm finishing up my vacation! The holiday mini catalog is now in effect, with tons of great new stamps, papers and accessories. You won't want to miss out! Click here to shop from the holiday mini online.

Also, while you're checking out all the new goodies, stop by the Clearance Rack for last-chance retired items. Some of the retired card stock (old colors) is up for sale this morning - if you're looking for any of those colors, get over there quick because I'm sure they won't last long! For the Clearance Rack click here.

If you're one of my regular customers, stay tuned for the monthly newsletter once I'm home from vacation!