Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Sympathy Poppy

Cornish Heritage Farms is having a summer contest, one challenge each week for five weeks. The competition is out of this world already, but here's the fun part . . .if you enter a card each week for five weeks, you get a 25% off coupon for your entire purchase at their store. You don't have to win or be the best stamper, you get the coupon just for entering. How cool is that?Check out the details here

The first week is a coloring challenge. Lots of talented stampers have colored those intricate Thomas Kinkade stamps . . . um, I tried one once. Let's move on! 

This is a wee bit simpler. I decided instead of the more traditional red poppy to color this one as a California golden poppy. First I used my SU watercolor crayons in orange and pumpkin on the poppy flower petals. Poppy petals are very shimmery, so I overlaid the crayons with twinkling H20s in Mandarin Blush and Mango Mamba. I also used a black crayon, painted with an aquapainter, for the poppy center. And here is where my botanical knowledge leaves me, but you know the center of a poppy looks like hundreds of little black balls (pistils? stamens? something). I used black diamond stickles to recreate that look. The stems and leaves are colored in with crayons and I sponged the outside of the oval with chalk.

My daughter picked up on the symbolism of the black bird, she said she didn't like it, it reminded her of death. This is a sympathy card, that is what the bird is meant to represent, so I guess it works. This is an Autumn Leaves stamp that actually faces the other way, but I wanted it to face the poppy to keep the focus inside the card and not draw the eyes outside, so I stamped it on acetate and flipped it so it faces center. Notice I have the edges under the ribbon knot and the orange panel so the mini glue dots I used to hold it down are hidden. Thanks for looking. 
Stamps: Cornish Heritage Farms Poppies, Autumn Leaves Round and Round
Ink: Graphite Black Brilliance ink
Cardstock: SU black, Garden Green, Certainly Celery, Tangerine, Summer Sun, Neenah solar white, acetate, someone's DP
Other: SU watercolor wonder crayons, SU chalks, Twinkling H20s in Mandarin Blush, Mango Mamba, dewdrops, Nestabilities, fiskars corner embossing punch, Martha Stewart edge/border punch, PTI lemon tart ribbon, gold pen

Sunday, June 28, 2009

Patriotic Birdies!

Is it just me or do we all feel a bit more patriotic as we get closer to July 4th? And I think that red white and blue together are lovely colors. 

I believe its a good idea when you can, to be deliberate in your stamping, by that I mean having a reason for everything you put in your card or creation. I chose the scalloped circle nestabilities and put the white ringed with red in that order because it reminds me of the bunting you see draped on country farmhouses on the porch railings. I chose the Martha Stewart flower punch because bright colorful flowers are part of summer, but they also slightly mimic fireworks, so I added the bright red microbeads to the blue and white flowers for centers. The red gingham reminds of of summer picnic cloths, the white vintage die cut in the corner, the gingerbread you find on older homes. The light blue panel that backs everything up on the kraft represents the blue sky you want to appear when you have a picnic. 

Even knowing I wanted to use this set in a patriotic card, I was still a bit puzzled for layout, but Clear Dollar Stamps is having a guest designer contest right now and they posted a layout that looked like fun to try, this is very loosely based on that layout. You can see the details for the contest and layout here. I liked the divide in the middle, so I could have my red checked background AND include blue! The corner of my card bent a little, it was a windy day and while I thought I'd utilize natural light to take my photo, it blew over! Thanks for looking.

Stamps: Clear Dollar Stamps Pretty Perches, Stampin' Up! Dad's Day (BG on blue panel)
Cardstock: SU Kraft, Bashful Blue, Pacific Point, PTI Poppy, Neenah Solar white, red gingham check DP from Hobby Lobby
Ink: SU Green Galore, Glorious Green, Close to Cocoa, white craft, Pacific Point, PTI Poppy, Versamark dazzle pad
Other: Martha Stewart punch, red microbeads, white lacy sticker, Cuttlebug vintage die cut, Azure blue glitter, blue rivet, white button . . . I think that's all

Blog Award

One of my fellow Ocean's 11 bloggers from splitcoast stampers awarded me this cute little blog award, thank you Dell!  You can see her blog at She chose seven ladies who according to this award show an attitude of gratitude. 
  I didn't post this right away because you are in turn supposed to give these blog awards away and I still have one from Women to Women Sharing Jesus to give away too, but this is one of those blog etiquette things where I often stumble. 
  I know I'm grateful for the friends I've made online, you all help me keep my sanity! I know I'm grateful I have the time, opportunity, resources and a wee bit of giftedness to be able to craft and create. 
I believe I would like to pass this along to:

The Mama Monkey at The Monkey Hut
Diane at Mom of Five
Joanne (Jojot) at Inky Ocean Gazer

Hope I did that right. Thank you again Dell! 

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Papertrey Ink June Blog Hop

If you say 'summer' to any one of my kids, they will instantly thinkof Empire, Michigan. Our most special family vacations have been spent there near Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore
The beaches are gorgeous, the sand dunes spectacular and the memories irreplaceable. I choke up every time I look at my inspiration photo, we always have good times there.  

For the PTI June blog hop we were to choose a picture or representation of summer and recreate that in card form. This is the sunset over Lake Michigan. You see two people kayaking in silhouette and my son walking along the edge of the water. There are no words to describe the colors in a Lake Michigan sunset, the photo shows you best. 
Add Image
I tried to recreate the mood with a variation on the wrinkle free distress technique. Using a piece of wax paper, I swiped a strip of color from Ranger Distress inks using first Broken China, then a thin strip of Dusty Concord, then a bit of Dried Marigold and Spiced Marmalade. Then you spritz it with water until the ink beads up. I laid down a piece of white cardstock to capture the colors and then dried them with a heat gun. For a more traditional technique I would have swiped the cardstock again, for a more mottled look, as I did in the CDS card in a post below, but I wanted bands of color to represent the sunset. 

The water really shimmers in the photo, so to recreate some of the shimmer I mixed my own blend of soft sky reinker drops with Perfect Pearls in water and a spray/mister bottle, masked out the top part of the image and sprayed the water portion with homemade glimmer mist. In the closeup photo you can see the shine. I used waterfall stickles for some of the wave action. Then I stamped the Life images in black craft, embossed them and did the sentiment. That was tricky I have to admit.
First I inked half of the sentiment in black and stamped it, wiped it off carefully and stamped on scrap paper to make sure the ink was off, inked the second portion of black, lined it up using the grid block, stamped again, then inked the last word 'moments' with a Kaleidacolor Desert Heat pad for the fiery yellow and orange and stamped the last word. This is one of those cases where I was soooo tempted to add ribbon or twine or a button or something and decided to leave well enough alone. Thanks for looking. 

Stamps: Papetrey Ink Life
Cardstock: PTI white, SU black
Inks: Ranger distress ink pads in Broken China, Dusty Concord, Dried Marigold, Spiced Marmalade, SU black craft, Kaleidacolor Desert Heat
Other: SU Soft Sky and Bordering Blue reinkers, Perfect pearls powder, mister spray bottle (to make homemade glimmer mist), waterfall stickles, clear EP

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Shadowbox Birdhouse

I know I've used this DP until you're tired of seeing it, but it is so happy and springy. I thought it went so well with the birdhouse images from my new Clear Dollar Stamp set. 
  Shadowbox is one of my favorite layouts and I thought it could help make a nice outdoor scene for this birdhouse. I made a sky background first, using Cindy Motherway's tutorial, sweet Cindy, thank you for sharing it! Then I stamped the branches and leaves over it. I inked the leaves in green galore first then rolled the edges in glorious green. 
  I stamped the birdhouse in turquoise and coral craft, I just liked those two colors together. Then I embossed it to give the birdhouse a bit of shine. The chain is inked with silver craft and also embossed. The birdhouse and the red bird each are popped up on a dimensional to give the card even more depth. This style card folds flat for mailing, so even though the sentiment hangs over the edge of the middle panel when open, folded flat it fits quite nicely. Thanks for looking. 
Stamps: Clear Dollar Stamps Pretty Perches and Christian Sympathy
Inks: Bashful blue, Cameo Coral craft, Turquoise craft, black, Real Red, Green Galore, Glorious Green, Close to Cocoa
Paper: Bashful blue, Neenah solar white, DP 
Other: Waterfall stickles, nestabilities ovals and . . . that other shape, prima flowers

Saturday, June 20, 2009

Butterflies on the wing

For the second challenge, we were to make a spiral cut card. First time for me and what fun! I am definitely going to make one of these again. The instructions for it are here

The first photo on the left shows the inside, my little spiraling butterflies. Easy peasy Lemon Squeezy (as the one commercial says) when you use a punch. I took my Martha Stewart butterfly punch, opened the drawer where I (hoard) keep my DP and punched five times in different colored scraps of paper. Voila! A flock of butterflies to put inside my card. (do butterflies travel in flocks, packs, or something else?) I have no idea whose DP is whose, the minutes I cut a piece of the name off, and have scraps left, I'm lost. Anyway, thanks for looking and try this technique, it is a lot of fun!
Stamps: Stampin Up Winged Things, PTI Green Thumb sentiment additions
Ink: Black stazon
Paper: SU Tangerine something, PTI lemon, neenah solar white, assorted DP
Other: MArtha Stewart butterfly punch, labels 4 nestability, orange GG ribbon, blah, blah, blah

Life in Potato Colors

We had a power outage for about a day because of strong storms. Luckily we have no damage and I think most of the food in the refrigerator survived, thanks to my DH who ran out and bought ice and put it in big bowls inside freezer and refrigerator. 
Before we lost power I started playing in the SCS VSN appetizer night. Five different challenges, so far I've gotten to two of them (there wasn't a stamping by candlelight challenge or I'd have been all over that one!)
 For the first challenge, posted by Darth Tater (I'll wait a minute for you all to catch up to the joke), we had to create a card using colors of a baked potato with toppings, including brown, green for chives, white for the potato interior, yellow for buttah! And the extra color, that had to be added in a different fashion, through ribbon or glitter, was red (like paprika!) 
I went lightly on the brown, only using it in the sentiment (I never eat the potato skin anyway), and the Life set works great in avocado and overlaid with a white embossed layer. A touch of red stickles to my green stems and voila! My potato card was done. Thanks for looking. 

Friday, June 19, 2009

Wrinkle Free Distress

I always like trying new techniques. Sherry Cheever posted a tutorial on splitcoast a few weeks ago for wrinkle free distress backgrounds. Don't be fooled, this took me at least five tries to get something halfway decent. :)
  The minute I saw the Clear Dollar Stamp set I was attracted to the silhouette images and thought they would make a nice match with this technique. 
  For the primary panel with the stamped image I used Broken China, Mustard Seed, Peeled Paint. I used aluminum foil first, but then wax paper seemed to work better instead. I think I'll invest in the Ranger non stick craft sheet soon. Watching Sherry's tutorial is the best way to learn, but basically you swipe the pads across a non stick surface, spritz them with water until the ink beads up, then press your paper down on the ink, dry it with a heat gun or craft iron, then blot the paper again until you like your results. For the back panel I used Broken China, Antique Linen and Peeled Paint. Thanks for looking. 
Stamps: Clear Dollar Stamps Pretty Perches, For Our Lord
Paper: PTI Spring Moss, SU Old Olive, black, Neenah solar white
Ink: Ranger distress inks Broken China, Mustard Seed, Peeled Paint, Antique Linen, SU black craft ink
Other: wax paper, spritzer, Martha Stewart edge punch, ribbon from Mike's

Thursday, June 18, 2009

RST Prize and a Tilda

Some people think I am the peggysue who won Vintage Picnic from Papertrey Ink. I am not that peggysue, that is a different person and I wish her all joy from her fabulous prize and much enjoyment utilizing the stamps! That set is on my wish list however.
  Here you see a prize that I did win recently, much to my surprise, from Rubber Stamp Tapestry. The company has a very helpful blog, here, which has tutorials for using their peg stamp sets. I entered a comment admiring a card and voila! won the stamp pads and stamp pegs you see above. I have to admit, I had mixed feelings about this win . . . I really had no thought in my mind of winning a set, I was just leaving a nice comment. I've been missing my dad more than ever with Father's Day so close around the corner . . . but the vintage stamps are lovely and I will put them to good use.  Thank you to Rubber Stamp Tapestry for your generosity and the tutorials which are helping me understand better than ever how to utilize my peg stamps. 
  And the card is just a Tilda using up some scraps I had lying on my desk. I have been organizing my paper into hanging file folders and trying to clear things up in general. I had colored her a while ago and had that exact size piece of DP as a scrap lying about, so I put them together and made a card. Thanks for looking. 

Monday, June 15, 2009

Cascading Leaves Socks

My friend Vikkijo heard I had green socks and told me about this marvelous new invention called 'soap.' I can hardly wait until my husband comes home from work so I have a chance to hit the stores and check it out. :)
  Feeling the need to prove that I don't wear my socks until they turn green, I'm posting the type of project I work on while traveling. Here to the left you see before you the best self-defense mechanism I've ever developed. I started knitting socks a few years ago after sitting and freezing at countless "Spring" softball, lacrosse, track and whatever meets. Spring in the Midwest can be warm and sunny and happy or drizzling and bone chilling cold. Knitting socks gave my hands something to do while sitting in those cold metal bleachers cheering on my children's sports teams AND when I got too cold, I could put my hands inside the partially knit sock, depending on my progress. Great incentive to knit FAST. This is a pair I started when I traveled to Colorado and finished during one of the many car trips I've had since. I only knit when I'm not driving, just so you don't worry about that. "Look at that crazy woman, shifting three lanes AND knitting too!"
 The yarn is a wonderful new discovery I found called Sea Wool. It is a 70/30 blend of merino wool and seaweed, nice and soft and springy. The pattern is called Cascading Leaves. 
  Right now I'm working with a purple of the same type of yarn and developing a pattern of my own, because the color reminds me of luscious blackberries.  

Sunday, June 7, 2009

Summer Tilda post it note holder

This is what you can make while the Cubs go into extra innings during a Sunday afternoon game. The game lasted five hours today and went through 14 innings, but they won! They won! 
Ahem. Anyway, while I was going through some friends' blogs, I came across a Magnolia - licious blog hop and challenge. I haven't played with my Tildas for a while and thought it would be fun. 
I also was anxious to break into this new Doodlebug Designs paper for summer. I was at Archiver's a few weeks ago and just took one sheet of each design off the rack, I had to have the whole set! 

The challenge was to make a post it note holder and little bag to carry it. So the Tilda you see is on a post it holder and there is a very BRIGHT green post it pad inside. The 'ribbon' Tilda is sitting on is actually a stamp, I have a set, I think its Hero Arts, of ribbon style stamps and my favorite has got to be the gingham. You can make it in any color and it looks like it is real ribbon. 
My favorite way to color Tilda is with an aquapainter and SU reinkers. One day I'll get around to really learning how to use my copics, but for now Tilda and I will paint together! :)
And I guess I was itching to make some layers after the no layer card challenge for PTI so my little bag has lots of them! I also wanted an excuse to use that lacy vintage cuttlebug die and it kind of reminds of this loopy, short sort of garden fence my dad used to put around strawberries when I was young. The bag looked a little plain, so I used the Martha Stewart punch to add a bit of coordinating loopiness at the top. :) And I had a wee bitty strawberry stamp set from Stampendous that sort of matches the strawberries in the Doodlebug Designs paper. Thanks for looking. 
Whoops! I forgot to put a link, in case you want to play too, you have until June 12th. Here is the link with the details:
Stamps: Hero Arts ribbon, Stampendous Strawberry Cutie, Magnolia Tilda, PTI 'Life' set (sentiment)
Cardstock: Kraft, chipboard, doodlebug Designs summer paper set, Bazill Starmist textured paper, SU pink pirouette, watercolor paper (tilda)
Inks: wide variety of SU reinkers including Pacific Point, Barely Banana, Summer Sun, Marigold Morning, Close to Cocoa, Pixie Pink, Graphite Black Brilliance archival ink
Other: SU retired ribbon (brown bag handle), spellbinder nestabilities, cuttlebug vintage die, gemstone, Martha Stewart border punch 

Saturday, June 6, 2009

Papertrey Princesses Challenges 2 & 3

The idea behind a challenge is just that, to make it challenging! I found these both difficult, but that is the point. :)
The first card is a one layer creation. I hope adding the strip of twill isn't cheating, it is one layer of paper, although I wanted to paper piece the teapot so badly! 
I was smiling the entire time I was creating as I hadn't stamped in over a week, such a great reminder of the pleasure we get from our hobbies. 
I enjoyed mixing stamp sets and I pulled out my Spots & Dots for the first time, and I used the Life stamp set too. I left it out because I want to use it again after I put up this post. 
For the second card, we were supposed to challenge ourselves to pull out a stamp set that was collecting dust. That would be my holiday tag set from 2008. I never have used it, although I like it very much, I just never feel inspired by it. I mixed four colors for it including hibiscus, Spring Moss, Aqua and Spring Rain, oh, White craft too for the polka dots. Thanks for looking.