Monday, 19 February 2018

Hang in There!

Sometimes a stamp set with dies comes along and you know you just have to have it.  That's what happened when I saw the monkeys.  And what luck to have a challenge come along that is asking for clean and simple with dies.  I can do that with this set.

I used a base of Heavy Whisper White and then added a die-cut piece of Whisper White.  I love the cross-stitch pattern along the perimeter of that die-cut!  Just to make a break between the base and this layer, however, I added a very narrow matte of Pear Pizzazz.  Then it was time to begin using those monkeys.

I stamped my images on Whisper White using Memento Black ink and then used the matching dies to cut them out.  Once they were cut out, I used my alcohol Stampin' Blends to colour them.  Since the card was supposed to be clean & simple, I just attached the image of the monkey hanging from a vine to the card using Dimensionals and then added the second vine by gluing it using Tombow.

Stamping on the sentiment using Memento Black finished up the card nicely, don't you agree?

I'm entering this card in the CAS on Sunday Challenge #126 - Use a die on your card

I'm also entering the card in the HLS February Anything Goes With Dies Challenge

Sunday, 18 February 2018

Turn Back the Clock

Creating ATC's is something to which I'm definitely becoming addicted.  Having to create something so small (2 1/2" x 3 1/2") and yet make a statement is really a challenge.  And, as you know, I love challenges.  The theme over at the HLS February ATC challenge is Hearts.  This was a fun ATC to create.

I began with a base of Berry Burst, added a lovely piece of Designer Paper which had the look of watercoloured paper and then stamped a few random semi-solid circles in gold ink.  Once done, I put that aside to dry properly while I got to work on the rest.

I used the fun, swirly heart shape from the Sunshine Wishes Thinlits to cut a piece of slightly patterned Berry Burst paper from the Color Theory Memories & More pack and then also fussy cut two flowers from the same pack.  I used Tombow Mono Liquid glue to adhere the heart and flowers to the card, added a few random gold foil hearts which I had lying around, and then stamped the lovely sentiment from a set of Gina Marie stamps using Berry Burst ink. 

I absolutely love that sentiment, don't you?

This ATC is being entered into the HLS February ATC Challenge with the Twist of Hearts.

I'm also entering it into the 613 Avenue Create Challenge #201 which is Anything Goes with an optional twist of Love.

Time Out for Crafting

I have a lot of hobbies but of them all, crafting takes up the majority of my time.  One of the reasons, of course, is the weather which we experience in this area.  With a good 5 months of winter (sometimes more), the temperatures outside make working inside a real pleasure.  Papercrafting, wirecrafting and painting are among my favourties. 

I created a one-layer card to show off some of these hobbies.  The container of paint brushes could easily belong to my papercrafting or to my painting hobbies.  The scissors, well when don't we use scissors?

After creating a subtle background of Distress Oxide spotches, I stamped the container of brushes and then, after masking the container, stamped the scissors.  I used a combination of alcohol inks and metallic pens to colour everything.  Finally I added a bit of dimension with a "grungy" stamp and also the pencilled-in end to the work table.

I've created this card for the Time Out Challenge #103 which is all about Hobbies.  I chose to do their optional twist of a one-layer card.

Wednesday, 14 February 2018

Live With Passion

When I saw a friend's card for the CAS Colours & Sketches challenge, I knew I wanted to try the sketch for this week.  It's funny how sometimes a sketch or a combination of colours can "speak" to you and make you want to use them, isn't it?

This is the sketch to which I'm referring:

Very simple, right?  And the samples by the DT show such a variety of interpretations.  It simply made me want to try it myself.  And so I did.

First of all I took a scrap piece of Heavy Whisper White and played around with two Distress Oxide colours:  Cracked Pistachio and Broken China.  I kept the colours simple and didn't layer them very much.  After I had dried it well, I used the plain dragonfly thinlit from the set of Detailed Dragonfly Thinlits to cut out my image.

For my base I used Heavy Whisper White.  After masking off a rectangle at the left of the front, I stamped the grass from the retired Inspired By Nature stamp set using the Tranquil Tide ink.  Then I stamped the sentiment from the same set using the same ink in the bottom right corner.  Once the ink was nicely dried, I attached the dragonfly which I had previously prepared to the grass using small dimensionals.

I'm entering this card into the following challenges:

CAS Colours & sketches #259

HLS February Anything Goes With Dies Challenge

Tuesday, 13 February 2018

When a heart isn't a heart

Last month the Twofer Challenge gave us Feathers as a theme.  The challenge?  Make two cards using them in different ways.  Well this month we have Hearts.  Appropriate, I guess, since February is the big, filled-with-hearts-and-love month, right?  What really threw me for a loop was the fact that I don't seem to have much in the way of hearts.  And then I noticed the Lift Me Up stamp set and coordinating Up & Away Thinlits had the perfect heart.  Like they say, one is enough.

For my first card I decided to heat emboss the heart onto Sweet Sugarplum cardstock using white embossing powder.  I did that twice.  Then I cut both hearts out using the matching thinlit and put them aside while I created the rest of the card.  I began with a base of Heavy Whisper White, a layer of Sweet Sugarplum, and then another layer of Whisper White onto which I did my stamping and also attached my hearts.  For my stamping I mixed and matched a number of sets including the Lift Me Up set, High Tide set and You've Got This set.  Along with the White, my colours are Sweet Sugarplum, Pool Party, Black and Smoky Slate. 

For the second card I took a scrap of Whisper White and three colours of Distress Oxide inks, the Fossilized Amber, Worn Lipstick and Wilted Violet and proceeded to smoosh, spray, dry, and repeat again and again until I had a combination that appealed to me.  Then I cut out four hearts using the Up & Away heart thinlit and put them aside.  I used Heavy Whisper White for my base again but kept it simple this time.  Using a rounded stitched rectangle, I cut a piece of Whisper White and then heat embossed the sentiment from the Butterfly Basics sets onto it using Copper embossing powder.  Then I took the small body from the Watercolour Wings set as well as the antennae from the same set and stamped those onto the base as well as onto the smaller heat embossed piece.  After attaching the rounded rectangle onto the base using Dimensionals, I used small Dimensionals to attach a heart to each side of both bodies, creating two pretty butterflies.

As required by the Twofer rules, this is both cards photographed together.

My cards are, of course being entered into the Twofer Challenge

Card number one is also being entered into the 

Card number two is being entered into the following challenges:

Thursday, 8 February 2018

Lakota Prayer

Sometimes two challenges converge and ask to be played together.  For me it is the current Addicted to CAS challenge which is all about Teal and the City Crafter Challenge which is all about Feathers.  The reason these challenges converged for me is completely due to a stamp which I bought the last time I visited Calgary.  It's by Impression Obsession Rubber Stamps and has no name.  I have to admit, however, that from the first moment that I saw it, this stamp left an impression on me.  Considering that blue tones (including, of course, teal) are my favourite colours, it came as no surprise that when I saw the challenges, I also saw this stamp in teal.

I used Island Indigo ink to stamp the image.  Then I went to work with my alcohol inks (I used the current Bermuda Bay Stampin' Blends as well as the retired Coastal Cabana Blendabilities).  Then, when the colours looked right to me, I let them dry completely and then added some clear Wink of Stella.  Finally, since the Lakota prayer is all about finding balance and love, I die-cut a "love" at the bottom right but left the negative pieces intact.

To finish, I mounted the stamped and coloured piece on a very narrow matte of Island Indigo and then a base of Heavy Whisper White.

I'm entering this card in the following two challenges:

Addicted to CAS #129 - Teal

City Crafter Challenge Blog Week 398 - Feather


Monday, 5 February 2018

My Heart is Perfect...

Valentine's Day is coming up soon.  How can you tell?  Check out people's blogs and you'll find romance or hearts or both.  Am I going to be different?  Nope!  This is the one time of the year that I haul out all those hearts and sweet sentiments.  Are you ready to see what I've done?

There is a really odd looking heart in the Sunshine Wishes thinlits die set which is all scribbles.  That's the heart for which I reached when I decided to create this clean and simple card.  First, however, I took a base of Heavy Whisper White cardstock and attached a die-cut cross-stitched rectangle of Whisper White.  Then I proceeded to add some Brilliant Red Brusho crystals and a spray of water.  To get a bit more of a controlled look, I took a medium sized artist's brush and moved some of the colour around.  Once that was done, I took the card and used my heat gun to thoroughly dry the layers.

I cut two images with the scribble heart die.  One image is Whisper White, the other image is Basic Black.  I glued the Whisper White heart on top of the Basic Black one, allowing it to overlap just a tiny bit to show both colours.  Then I glued the die-cuts to my prepared card and added the sentiment using Basic Black ink.

Don't you just love the simple lines?

I'm entering this card in the following challenges:

HLS February CAS Challenge - with a twist of Hearts

CAS February 2018 Watercolour Card Challenge - Heart

Friday, 2 February 2018

Meowy Christmas!

A few weeks before Christmas, I stamped an adorable little kitten holding a stocking.  I had planned to colour it and use it to create a Christmas card for one of my cat-loving friends.  Other demands were made on my time, I put that adorable stamped image aside and, until yesterday, forgot all about it.  As I've mentioned, I'm doing some tidying and sorting and what did I find?  Well, you know all about the kitten by now. 

I decided to use my image for a challenge, knowing that otherwise it might disappear for good before I used it next Christmas.  Looking through my lists, I found that the Merry Monday Christmas Challenge is all about creating a Christmas card using pastel colours.  Okay, so pastels it would be!

I used my Soft Sky, Mint Macaron, Sweet Sugarplum, Peekaboo Peach, So Saffron and Smoky Slate inks and my AquaPainter to colour in the little kitten and stocking.  The soft colours worked beautifully.  For my base I used the Heavy Whisper White and then a layer of So Saffron and Soft Sky before adding my stamped layer.  After stamping my sentiment using Basic Black, I stamped the little paw-prints across it using Smoky Slate.

Don't you just love the expression on the kitten face?

I'm entering this card in the following challenges:

     Merry Monday Christmas Challenge #275 - a pastel Christmas
     Addicted to Stamps & More #277 - Make Your Mark (inks and watercolouring)

     Fab & Funky Challenges #379 - Christmas

Thursday, 1 February 2018

The Best is Yet to Be

It really excites me when I find something special while doing mundane and boring things like going through my stash.  Too much stuff!  How did I ever accumulate so much?

But then, among designer papers which I know I won't use, I find something special.  About four or five years ago we had some wonderful die-cut specialty paper for Valentine's.  I remember thinking that if I used it all, it would be gone.  Such a silly thing to think because here it is, just stashed away when it should be used for something to give me and others pleasure.  And I had the perfect project in mind, too.

The Paper Players' sketch challenge would be perfect for the die-cut heart.  And I had just the paper and images with which to combine it.  The black and white watercolour images of the Petal Passion Suite were begging to be used with it.  And so I used some of the Designer Paper from the Suite, cut out some images from the Petal Passion Memories & More Card Pack and created my card.

Don't you just love the Real Red with the black and white?

I'm entering this card in the Paper Players Challenge PP378.

I'm also entering this card in the Mod Squad Challenge - Valentine/LOVE with something red.

Wednesday, 31 January 2018

HLS February Watercolour Challenge - Love You

Ooooh!  It's February and Valentine's Day is coming up soon.  Of course our HLS February Watercolour Challenge is going to have a twist with hearts.

I decided to use my Scarlet Brusho for the watercolour background.  After getting those bold brushstrokes and drying my paper well, I splattered a few drops of water over the red and then, after they had begun to react on the red brushstrokes, dried my paper again.  Love the final effect!

What did I want to put against that bright red?  Some gold foil, of course.  And so I took one of my hearts dies, slipped my script "love" die into the inside space, and cut the whole thing at once.  I love the way the script leaves a negative space that lets the beautiful red show through, don't you?

To finish up, I cut another heart, this time a tiny one, out of white cardstock and put the "you" on it before adding it to my gold heart, propped up on foam dimensionals.  Then I hand cut an arrow from some scraps of gold foil, added that, and my card was done.

I hope you'll check out the awesome cards created by the others in the HLS team HERE.

Our winner for this challenge will receive a $20 coupon to spend at the shop! Check out all the details HERE.


Saturday, 27 January 2018

High on Life!

Some people are easy when you're getting ready to create a birthday card for them.  You know what their hobbies and/or passions are and away you go.  That's pretty well what happened when I sat down to make a birthday card for my nephew.  He has a lot of passions but one which has been with him since he was a little boy is planes.  He truly can't get enough of them.

As it happens I've had a stamp waiting to be used.  I've gone back to it a few times but each time I went with another stamp, another theme.  This time, however, inspiration came instantly when I opened the stamp case and everything came together beautifully.  Don't you absolutely love it when that happens?

This is a 2014 Art Impressions set which is unnamed.  It's one of those cartoonish sets poking fun at the older crowd and the images are pure fun.  What makes it perfect for this card is the vintage plane and the vintage flying gear the elderly pilot is wearing.  Of course in the stamp there was an elderly lady sitting right behind the pilot.  I had to virtually cut her out of his life to make room for the dog.  In the stamp set, this pup was parachuting but without that parachute he's the perfect companion for this pilot.

I used my alcohol Stampin' Blends to colour the images.  I shaded the edges of the stitched clouds by sponging them with Smoky Slate ink.  Yes, there are three sentiments, but somehow they work together beautifully.

Oh, and yes, he absolutely loved the card.  Yay!

I'm entering my card into these challenges:

Seize the Birthday - Alas, not the single layer of the topping, but an anything goes

Tuesday, 16 January 2018

There's a new kid on the block!



Those two words came to me when I discovered the brand new Twofer Card Challenge introduced by Darnell this month.  One image.  Two cards.  Two totally different designs.

Well, you know I had to try it, right?

Since the prompt word for the challenge is "feathers", I turned to a retired set by Stampin' Up! called Fine Feathers.  The peacock feather in the set gave me some ideas. 

For the first card I stamped the feather several times in a circle, always touching the sides.  Can you see it?  There is a little creature that was simply begging to be created.  I coloured the stamped areas using my Stampin' Blends, the Smoky Slate, Crumb Cake, Daffodil Delight and Pumpkin Pie.  The little creature really began to come to life.  Since I only wanted part of the stamped area to show, I created a tree with a hollow from which he could peek out.  Perfect!  I'm thinking Owl, but it could be anything.

My next card shows off that wonderful feather in all its coloured glory.  I used a mixture of Stampin' Blends and Stampin' Markers for the colours.  Bright!  And so different from the little creature in the other card.

Now Darnell wants the cards photographed together and so here they are.

I hope you'll go over to the Twofer Card Challenge for a look at all the other creations.

Monday, 15 January 2018

Pink and White and Roses --There's Music in the Air!

Woo Hoo!  I got Top Pick at Inkspirational for this card!

Sometimes a challenge can be more than a challenge.  Sometimes it is an inspiration that just won't let you go until you've created something.  That's what happened to me when I saw the lovely pink and white inspiration photo at the Inkspirational Challenge.  I knew what I wanted to do and hoped that I could somehow translate my ideas into a card.

I began with simply heat embossing a section of the background stamp set, Sheet Music.  I used white embossing powder but I think that's going to have to be replaced because it's taking on a more vintage, yellowish tinge.  In other words, it's ageing gracefully.  I used a piece of Shimmery White cardstock for that but the shimmer seems to be lost to the camera lens.  Once the heat embossing was nicely cooled and hardened, I randomly covered it with a wash  of Powder Pink ink and then sponged the lower section to make it a bit darker pink.

After that I cut two roses using my Rose Garden thinlets, one from Powder Pink cardstock and the other from Dazzling Diamonds Glimmer paper.  I also cut a small "love" from Shimmery White cardstock and sponged that to give it an ombre look.

I think the pearls and vellum leaves which I added are the perfect finishing touch, don't you?

I've entered this card into the Inkspirational #152 - Violin Photo Challenge.

I've also entered this card into the Addicted to CAS #127 - Music Challenge.

And finally I've also entered this card into the Let's Craft and Create Challenge #133 - Option Love is in the Air.

Friday, 12 January 2018

HLS January Christmas Challenge - Winter Wonderland

It's not hard to create Christmas cards when there is snow everywhere and the temperatures are hideously cold.  I decided to use a Stampendous stamp which really fit into the scene that I see when I look outside.  Oh, maybe there are more houses around, but the white stuff is there all right. 

Looking further into my stash, I found just the right sentiment in a set by Fiskars. 

All the colouring was done with my alcohol pens, the Stampin' Blends by Stampin' Up!  I decided to use a Smoky Slate cross-stitch die-cut matte to accent the light grey in the scene.  Otherwise I've used Whisper White.

I'm playing along with the HLS January Christmas Challenge which is CAS.

Thursday, 11 January 2018

HLS January ATC Challenge - From a Tiny Acorn

Well, I'm entering 2018, already having learned something new.   It's a bit of a thrill to both solve a mystery and to try something new as a new year begins.

What is this new thing I've learned?  Well I've been seeing "ATC" here and there and have even seen whole challenges featuring ATC's.  Finally I began doing a search and discovered that this is a new and novel way to showcase one's art.  They are "Artists' Trading Cards", in case, like me, you've been wondering.  They are always 2 1/2" x 3 1/2" but outside of the size, there aren't any rules.  Well, except for having one's name and a run-down of techniques/products used on the back.  So, instead of giving out business cards, artists have begun doing this.  So cool!

Of course I had to try my hand at making one of these ATCs.  Since my newest and most fun technique of the moment is using Brushos, that is the first thing that came to mind in creating this ATC.  After deciding that, it was just a matter of having fun.

It's all about trees for the January HLS ATC Challenge and so I decided to use my Lovely As A Tree Stamp set.  That one remains my favourite when it comes to trees.  Using the "mighty" Oak tree as well as the branch with the Oak leaves and acorn, I stamped the images on a piece of Whisper White backed with Soft Suede.  Then I used my alcohol Stampin' Blends to colour the scene.  Turning to the tiny Labeler Alphabet, I spelled out "GROW" in the upper right corner.  And I was done.

I hope you'll check out the HLS January ATC Challenge like I did. 

Wednesday, 10 January 2018

Thanks a Latte

Sketches are fun.  They challenge one to keep within the parameters of a set design and still come up with one's own fun creation.  Well with the sketch by Crystal Komora over at the Paper Craft Crew I knew right away I wanted to use my Coffee Cafe stamp set.  Strangely enough, the only stamp which I used out of the set was the sentiment "Thanks a Latte" and, actually, I cut the "Thanks" away. 

The Designer Paper for the Coffee Break Suite is awesome.  I love the colours.  I love the designs on all the papers.  I can't say enough about it.  It rocks!  So I cut out some of the awesome images, such as the coffee pot and the three little "to-go cups" and, along with the strip of coffee bean Designer Paper, I used that for the card.  My colours?  Keeping with the colours in the paper, I used a base of Whisper White, an embossed layer of Crumb Cake, and then some additional bits of Garden Green and Early Espresso.

I used a large "Thanks" die to cut into the embossed Crumb Cake and then bumped it up on three layers of Early Espresso "Thanks" before adhering it back onto the card.  Cutting into the little stamped oval with the "Thanks" die allowed me to push the "A Latte" portion right into the "Thanks".

I'm playing along with the Paper Craft Crew Challenge #275 (PCC275).

I'm also playing along with the Simon Says Wednesday Challenge Blog which is all about using patterned paper.  Since all my images are from patterned paper as well, I'm in.

Tuesday, 9 January 2018

Dies, Dies, and Love!

I've been buying a fair number of dies over the past few months.  They don't correspond to a stamped image but they have taken my fancy.  Time, however, to begin using rather than collecting.

I've been going through my drawers, finding products and even kits which I've forgotten.  Time to use or lose.  It's a new year.  I don't like resolutions--too easy to break.  I do, however, like the idea of refreshing my life.  I need to empty those spaces which hold all the unused things I've hoarded and this I've begun to do.

What fun to discover several challenges which I could combine and from which I could get inspiration.  Here, then, is my card using new and old dies, retired punches, assorted inks and bits and pieces of varied papers.  It evolved as I used each product and took on a life of its own.  I'm happy with the results.

Stamps:  Timeless Textures (SU!)

Papers:  Soft Suede, Early Espresso and Very Vanilla cardstocks; Copper Foil; Dazzling Diamonds Glimmer Paper.

Dies:  Trellis from a retired Simply Sent kit (SU!); Words and Flowers (unknown companies) from a source in Saskatchewan; Punches: Confetti Hearts Border (retired SU!)

Inks: Vintage Photo, Wild Honey, Peeled Paint Ranger Distress Oxides; Antique Linen Ranger Distress Ink; Encore Gold Ink.

Et Cetera: Copper Thread (SU!); Dimensionals; Tombow Liquid Glue; Fast Fuze.

I've entered the following challenges:

Let's Craft and Create #133 (Anything Goes with Option "Love is in the Air")
Grab Our Badge
4 Crafty Chicks #384 (Anything Goes with Twist Dies and Punches)
Play Badge
City Crafter Challenge #394 (All You Need is Love)

Friday, 5 January 2018

It's a Dog's Life!

I don't have any stamps that resemble the two canines I'm looking after at the moment.  But I do have these Tim Holtz mutts which make me smile.  There's something about a dog that makes him want to be your friend.  They look at you with those huge eyes.  They grin that big canine grin with that long tongue hanging out. And they're saying "be my friend".

I decided to colour the little Tim Holtz mutt in brown because it reminds me of chocolate and brownies and all sorts of sweet things.  Because dogs are sweet.  Under that messy, barking, shedding exterior there is a heart so filled with sweetness that it will forgive anything as long as you love it.

I'm entering this clean and simple card in the HLS January CAS challenge which is all about friends and friendship.  

I'm also entering the adorable little chocolate dog into the City Crafter Challenge which is all about colourful dogs.