Saturday, July 31, 2010

Welcome Christmas

OK, so I'm not really welcoming Christmas in July, but over at Our Creative Corner we are! Jennifer is finishing her month as hostess with a Christmas in July challenge. I actually made this card a couple weeks ago when my upline had a Christmas shoebox swap.

All the images on this card come from the new stamp set called Welcome Christmas. I just love it - of course, I do have a thing for Christmas stamps and could never have too many, but that's beside the point... Anyway, I chose River Rock, Cherry Cobbler and Early Espresso for my colors. The wreath was stamped on naturals white card stock; I colored over the berries for a pop of color. I stamped the sentiment twice so I could cut out the middle and mount it on dimensionals. Some rounded corners, the JOY stamp down the side, sponged edges and espresso satin ribbon finished off this clean and simple card.

I always feel happy after making a Christmas card so I hope you'll join in the challenge and share the holiday spirit! Thanks for stopping by - it's going to be a busy month so my posts may be few and far between, but I always appreciate your visits and your comments!

Friday, July 30, 2010

Informal poll: Card Kits of the Month

I've had my card kits on hiatus for the summer but I'm hoping to bring them back in October. In preparation for that, I wanted to ask for some feedback.

With the increase in card stock prices, I am considering making a change to the card kits and would like to know which option you would prefer:

- keep the price at $15 but make the cards simpler (fewer layers)

- keep the price at $15 and offer cards similar to those in past kits, but only 10 cards (5 of each design)

- offer 12 cards similar to those in past kits, at a price of $18

If you have purchased or have considered purchasing a kit in the past and/or think you might purchase in the future, I'd love to hear from you in order to gauge demand for the kits. Please let me know what you think of them and what would make them appeal to you. Thanks so much!

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Colors of summer

Good morning! Sorry I've been absent this week. I'm actually on a trip with my kids right now for a few days, and it was a crazy week getting ready. But I'm here with my card for Our Creative Corner's challenge this week. Jennifer gave us the challenge to use watermelon colors: green, red, white and black. I got my layout from Pals Paper Arts and their sketch challenge for this week.

This card came together really quickly. First I went to my new designer papers and picked the green from Woodland Walk and the poppy from Sunny Garden. I layered those strips onto black card stock and separated them with black satin ribbon. The image panel uses grass from Inspired by Nature, stamped in Garden Green, and a popped-up butterfly in Poppy Parade from Butterfly Prints. The sentiment is from A Word for You and the button is from my stash. I tied it with hemp twine and that was the finishing touch!

Thanks for visiting my blog and be sure you go check out the rest of the work from our fabulous team. We love to see what you create so come and play along with our colors this week!

Saturday, July 17, 2010

Life's a Beach

Here's my card for this week's challenge at Our Creative Corner, which is to use a beach theme. These colors are really similar to the flap card I posted the other day, but that is coincidental because I actually started this card a few weeks ago and never finished it. Thanks to Jennifer for giving us the perfect challenge for me to pull it out and do something with it!

This started out as a one-layer scene card. I used reverse masking to cover everything but where I wanted the sand to be, then I sponged Crumb Cake onto my white card base using a paper towel - I wanted to get the texture of the towel on my card. (If anyone is wondering, we only use Bounty towels in my house, LOL!) The palm trees come from the Tropical Party stamp set and were colored with Early Espresso and Wild Wasabi markers. Next I used a dry Aqua Painter to add the water, using a drop of ink from my Marina Mist reinker. That's as far as I got with the original card.

Fast forward to this week. I had originally set the card aside because I didn't know how to finish it. It looked too plain as a single-layer card. This time around I added the sentiment using the Rough Type stamp set. I got this set in clear mount so that I could mount the letters onto a single block to stamp them all at the same time. It's a little tricky but it does work - you just have to go slowly and make sure the letters are really stuck down. Tip of the day: Although I usually use the labels that come with the clear-mount stamps, this time I didn't, in order to make them cling to the blocks better. I did the sentiment in two groups since I needed to repeat the "e" and "a", and there isn't an apostrophe in the set so I just left a space and drew in my own.

I wanted to have some kind of sun on my card. There were a couple other attempts but this is what I ended up with: a cog punch topped with a 1" circle punch in Daffodil Delight. I don't know if this was clever or crazy, but it's what I went with. I also ended up trimming the beach scene off the original card. It cut down the amount of white space and that really made a big difference here. I added a strip of Marina Mist designer paper at the top and adhered both to a daffodil card base with a layer of Early Espresso card stock behind the beach scene.

I don't know about you but I'd be pretty happy to be at this or any beach right about now! Be sure you go see what the rest of the OCC team has done for their beachy creations. I'm sure they'll be amazing as always!

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Printed Petals flap card

Here's a card we'll be making at club this weekend. I was inspired by this card by Dawn Olchefske. I think this turned out pretty cute! These cards are hard to take photos of, especially if your front is heavy. And you know me and layers - of course mine is!

First I made a card base from Pear Pizazz and rolled the Petite Petals wheel on the left side. Next I cut a panel of Early Espresso, folded it, and ran it through the Big Shot with the scallop square die. One side of the folded square was glued to the inside of the card (see below), then the other side of the folded piece ends up in the front, over the card base.

I wanted to feature the Printed Petals stamp set, which is in the new catalog. The large flower was stamped in Daffodil Delight, and I made the stem with pear card stock punched with the extra large bird punch (two branches with the leaves trimmed off and one wing for the leaf). The center of the flower is a 3/4" punch of Marina Mist and one of the flowers from Itty Bitty Bits. To finish I added the sentiment from Perfect Punches, a daffodil layer from the Lots of Tags dies, and a marina button tied with linen thread.

I actually stamped on the inside, although I think it took me longer to figure that out than it did to do the front! I just used another white panel and added the row of flowers (another image from Printed Petals). I hardly ever do anything to the inside of my cards so maybe that's why I had such a hard time, and it's embarrassing since it's so simple! LOL!

I have one more club project to finish and hopefully I'll have time to post it. I don't know where this week has gone!

Divine Diva Inspiration Challenge #32

It's challenge week again so here is this week's inspiration piece. I found this wrapping paper (and many other gorgeous choices) at the Container Store. Aren't the orchids gorgeous? I just loved the richness of this paper.

When I sat down to make my card the first thing I thought of was watercoloring. I haven't done it in a while and this seemed like the perfect chance. Of course, I don't have any orchid stamps, so I chose Elements of Style for my image. To be honest, I spent a lot of time experimenting with different layers of colors, so by the time I finished that, I had one section of the image that I was happy with and not enough time to do the whole thing over! But I thought it might work to just take a panel out of the image and feature it like a stained-glass window. That's my story and I'm sticking to it. The colors I used were Old Olive, Pink Pirouette, Pretty in Pink and Regal Rose, and I used reinkers and an Aqua Painter.

I kept the background simple in order to feature my "window" as much as I could. The base is So Saffron stamped with the new background stamp called Wonderfully Worn. I added a sentiment from Occasional Quotes and a Pretty in Pink satin ribbon and bow. I debated whether I should add anything else but I decided not to - sometimes it just seems like the right decision not to add everything under the sun.

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






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 DDIC32. Have fun and look for the next challenge on August 5!

Saturday, July 10, 2010

Cottage Cork

Here's my card for this week's challenge at Our Creative Corner. Our hostess for the month, Jennifer Meyer, has challenged us to use cork this week. This is a first for me - although we do have cork in the new SU catalog, I don't have any (yet?) so I picked some up locally. I will admit I found this a real challenge, and I don't know if I like my card or not... you'll have to tell me what to think!

I'm having so much fun breaking out my new catalog stuff. This card uses the stamp set Cottage Garden - remember those flowers from the Cottage Wall paper? Well, now we have stamps to match, and we also have the paper redone in new colors. I don't have that paper yet, but I did kind of channel the new version in my color choices of Poppy Parade, Peach Parfait, and Pear Pizazz. I cut my ovals with the Big Shot ovals die and the cork letters with the Alphabet Simple die set. I cut the letters down a little, mostly to make them fit better, but I kind of like the funkier shape they have in this size. The poppy card stock strip was embossed with the new vintage wallpaper folder. The border punch is by Martha Stewart.

Now I'm going to see what creative uses the rest of the team came up with for their cork projects - I'm sure it'll be fabulous stuff! I hope you'll do the same and then play along with us!

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Somebody stop me

I know, I know... I'm too busy to be making cards. But I couldn't help it! My new stuff kept calling to me. I got this idea and had to run with it. I stayed up way too late last night because this card just wouldn't let me stop. The upside is I have club next week and we'll use this for our technique card.

I wanted to feature one of our brand-new tools: the distressing kit. This is just an awesome little bundle of goodies: four ink spots and a solid stamp to use them with, plus a sanding block, emory board and three precision files for sanding and distressing just about anything. I was most curious about the inks, so I first took a scrap of naturals ivory card stock, crumpled it up real good, and tested all four inks. The technique is to ink the stamp and then rub it onto the paper. You can see the four colors in the photo. I'll have to play with these more because the inks are blendable and I'm sure there are tons of cool effects you can achieve.

OK, on to my card. I know it looks a little Valentiney (is that a word?) but I'm going with it. The first thing I did was stamp the large image from the new set Notably Ornate with Basic Black ink on Very Vanilla. I let it dry a little - not long enough because when I crumpled the paper it did smear some. But hey, that just adds to the distressed look. I used the charcoal distress ink and then cut the image out.

Next I tackled the chipboard. I don't have any of the new chipboard yet, so I made my own accents with our plain long board and the hearts and brackets die. Now, once upon a time I might have been scared to tackle covering these chipboard brackets, but with the distressing kit it's super easy. I glued on the paper (from the new Love Letter collection), cut out the shapes, and sanded with the emory board. If you need to get into an even smaller space, such as the holes in letters, no worries - the precision files are the answer. So fear the chipboard no more!

All right, let's finish this baby off. I added one more print from the paper pack on the vanilla card base, and on top of that I used a strip of Riding Hood Red card stock trimmed with the Chantilly crochet trim. Love this stuff! I put one of our new black buttons (black buttons! yay!!) on the heart, tied with hemp twine. The die-cut letters (made with Timeless Type dies) added the final touch.

This was really, really fun and I think my club members will love it. They are all experienced enough to handle this, but honestly it's pretty easy. Try it for yourself!

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

In with the new!

Today was a great day - my first order from the new catalog arrived! It even came a day earlier than I was expecting, so YAY! for UPS! I have a million things to do but I couldn't resist playing with some of my new stuff.

This week at Always Playing with Paper the challenge is a baby theme. Wouldn't you know, I had some new baby stuff in my box, so I was off and running. And can I just say how honored I was that they picked me as the headliner for my easel card in last week's challenge? Thanks so much, ladies!!

OK, so here is my card. Let's count how many new products I used, shall we? :) I first stamped the Baby Steps elephant [1] with Basic Gray ink. The stamp has a mama and baby elephant but I just used the larger one so it would fit in the scalloped rectangle Sizzlit [2]. I stamped the elephant again on Blushing Bride [3] card stock and cut out just the ear to pop it up, and instead of the stamped heart that goes with the image, I used a punched Melon Mambo heart with a pearl jewel [4] in the center. I mounted the scalloped rectangle on a Basic Gray panel with rounded corners.

Now, for the background. First I cut a panel of new Melon Mambo designer paper [5]. Below it I added a strip that I punched with the double scallop ribbon punch [6] - only half the punched piece is showing. Over that I added Blushing Bride ribbon [7]. I am way impressed with this ribbon - it's great to work with, a really nice weight, and super cute! The Whisper White card base was covered with Blushing Bride designer paper [8]. Finally I added a sentiment from the new hostess set Occasional Quotes [9], which I punched with the 1 3/4" circle and mounted on a 2 3/8" scallop circle punch [10]. Now maybe I lost my mind at this point, but I decided to add the tiniest of the adhesive pearls on each scallop. I wouldn't do this for club or a swap or anything, but I do love how it looks.

Holy cow, ten new products on a single card. I think that's a record for me! This was a really fun card to make. I have a long to-do list for the rest of the week so you probably won't see me again until the OCC post on Saturday. Hope everyone is having a great week and staying cool!

Sunday, July 4, 2010

A Flower for All Seasons class kit

These kits are sold out - thanks!

Recently I held a class where we made this great set of cards and a coordinating box. I have some of the supplies left over, including the designer paper, which is now retired, so I'm offering the class as a kit. The cost of the kit is $15. It features the stamp set A Flower for All Seasons, which you can order for the discounted price of $10 if you purchase the class kit. The kit itself can be purchased here; if you need to order the stamps or anything else, please contact me at Please note that I am able to offer four kits at this time. Since the quantities are limited I am asking that customers purchase no more than one kit.

Click on this button if you are a local customer and do not need the kit shipped to you.
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Click on this button to have the kit mailed to you (includes $3 for shipping).
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Here are the individual cards. I hope you'll have fun with this kit! Here's a list of additional supplies needed to complete the cards and box as shown.

A Flower for All Seasons stamp set
Sincere Salutations stamp set
Basic Black and Rich Razzleberry Classic ink pads
Markers: Real Red, Really Rust, Old Olive, Rich Razzleberry, Summer Sun, Orchid Opulence, Going Gray, Barely Banana
1” circle punch
Scallop border punch
Scoring tool
Bone folder
Sticky Strip
SNAIL adhesive
Stampin’ Dimensionals
Glue dots

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Divine Diva Inspiration Challenge #31

Welcome to our first challenge for July! Here in the U.S. we're coming up on our Independence Day holiday on Sunday, so for this week's challenge I chose something that could be patriotic if you choose but doesn't have to be. I hope you find lots of fun inspiration in this photo. It came from this fun blog that I'm sure I'll be coming back to for more challenges.

For my card I decided to use the little boat as my jumping-off point. The colors here are Cherry Cobbler, Not Quite Navy, Crumb Cake and white. The layout comes from Clean & Simple Stamping's Fall-to Layout 95.

The sailboat is from Nursery Necessities, and I mounted it on a 1 3/4" white circle and a 2 3/8" scallop circle (in the new catalog) in cherry. I made the scallop layer with the Pennant die, which I had out from my last card, and added a strip of cherry cardstock with faux stitching and a button from my stash threaded with white cardstock. The sentiment comes from the same stamp set, and with that my CAS card was complete.

Be sure to check out the cards made by all the Divine Divas for this challenge! Chris is taking this week off, so we have a special guest from the OCC: Dana Grothaus. And the rest of our regular team:





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 DDIC31. Have fun and look for the next challenge on July 15!