Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Bobble Hearts

Well, yesterday was a craft day at MOPS, and I thought I'd share the project we made. I'm always on the lookout for items that are affordable, useful, suitable for a variety of styles/personalities, and simple enough that self-professed "non-crafty" people won't be overwhelmed. When I ran across these bobble hearts I knew I'd struck gold. I kept these pretty simple (we had to be able to complete them in under 30 minutes) but you could do so much more! We traced the heart shape onto the back side of various printed papers, trimmed, and adhered with modge podge (thin layer brushed onto the paper). I then put out a variety of final embellishments: ribbon, buttons, flowers, gems, pearls, etc. and set everyone loose.

They're great for holding photos (my sample has our adorable kidlets from two years ago), recipes, lists, receipts, whatever! They're small enough that they won't take up too much space, but they can hold quite a bit. And wouldn't these make great gifts? I'm thinking about letting the kids decorate a couple for their grandparents. One little note: I used ink on my samples, but there is some sort of finish on the hearts, so it was a rather messy endeavor. Paint would definitely work better (but just wasn't feasible for us to do in the time allowed). Everyone had fun making these, and I was thrilled to hear little squeals of delight throughout the room as the ladies admired their handiwork.

Papers from DCWV; ribbon from SU; buttons, gems, and rub-on were just from my stash so I'm not sure of the source

Saturday, October 27, 2007

Lace and Distress Ink

I haven't taken much time lately to play with my stamps and inks, but I did throw together this quick card. I started with some printed papers (7gypsies), crinkled them and layered on some distress inks. The lovely lady (Art by Moonlight) was stamped awhile ago, and I finally added a bit of color and trimmed the panel. I do wish I'd been more careful when I swiped it with more distress ink - I love the effect but don't care for her dirty face :) I finished it off with some stitched ribbon, lace, and a prima flower.
Hope you're having a great weekend!

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Tea & Cookies

Well, today we're kicking off a fun new tradition - a Tea Party with the smART Cookies Design Team! Dina provided our first sketch, and this is what I came up with. Do not adjust your screen - the colors are very bright and there are a lot of them :) I did tweak it just a bit, as my main panel isn't quite square, but it's awfully close! I used the sets Standing Tall and To Life! along with BasicGrey Stella Ruby Paper. I'm definitely getting more comfortable mixing patterns, and this sketch gave me an excuse to use six on a single card. I know that several of them aren't exactly vivid prints, but hey, I'm growing! So here's the sketch if you'd like to play along, too. I'd love to see what you come up with!

Check out the other creations at In the Works, Mama Dini's Stamperia, Dee's Studio, Sweet Somethings, and Susiestampalot.

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

How addicted are you?

The "tea party" I mentioned in my last post was rescheduled, so I'll be posting a new card tomorrow. But in the meantime, I am shamlessly copying this funny quiz (that I found at Ruby Slippers Stamping) Give yourself a point for every yes and then total your score (analysis at the end)

1-I own 5 different brands of punches.
2-All my ribbon tied together would reach from my stamp room to my mail box or beyond.
3-I have at least 10 shades of green ink.
4-I know at least 3 ways to make my images look grounded.
5-I have at least one stamp in my collection that is a vehicle without wheels.
6-I have at least one stamp that has an image of some sort of antique.
7-In my stamp room is a needle, a bottle cap, and a piece of fabric (remember Let's Make a Deal when Bob wanted to see what was in your purse?).
8-I use some form of make-up in my stamping now and then.
9-I know at least 3 ways to make paper glittery.
10-I have shaving cream, rubbing alcohol, and bleach in my stamping supplies.
11- I have at least 5 kinds of adhesive.
12-In my stamp collection I have all three: an eagle, an owl, a hummingbird.
13-I have at least 15 kinds of flower stamps (tulips, roses, etc.)
14-I have more designer/decorate paper than I could use to make 200 cards.
15-I have at least 8 colors of silk/fabric flowers.
16-I have embossing powder that is at least 5 years old.
17-I have used an iron in my stamping more than once.
18-I have 10 or more background stamps.
19-My stamp collection includes a jar, a telephone and a typewriter/computer stamp (all 3 for the point!).
20-I have 3 or more pair of straight edged scissors or cutting tools.
21-I have at least 6 shades of blue cardstock.
22-I know 3 ways to attach a ribbon to a card.
23-I use transparencies in my stamping.
24-I know how to paint with reinkers.
25-I have at least one card in my stamp room that has 8 layers on it.
26-I have done paper piecing or paper applique before.
27-I have made a card with at least one element that uses origami.
28-I know how to resist emboss.
29-I store my markers horizontally.
30-I have at least one stamp or stamp set that is about chocolate.

28-30: We will have to bury you with your stamps when you die. You need inpatient treatment.
23-27: Yep, you are addicted, Without an intervention soon, you will quickly reach the level above this one.
18-22: Come on, you can do better. Take a few weeks off work and stamp!!!
17 and UNDER: There is still hope for you. Spend a bit more time reading blogs and shopping in stamp stores and you will make progress.

Anyone wanna guess my score? ;)

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

The Gift of Prayer

I haven't had much time to stamp these past few days, but I thought I'd share this card I made a couple months ago. You may have noticed that I like BasicGrey papers - I generally go for the 6x6 pads (I like the smaller prints for most cards) but sometimes a design calls for a large scale print. This card is very simple - it's all about the words (Auntie Amy's). I stamped them onto a corner of the paper where the colors were softest, then trimmed it. I layered on some organdy ribbon and fancy slide (Maya Road), then matted that onto some black. The black was also dry embossed with the CB tiny mosaic folder, so there's some additional texture. Finally, I covered the card front with more of the paper (Scarlet's Letter line, by the way) and then mounted the panel. The final touch was just a couple flourishes on the envelope (Autumn Leaves).

Things will be fairly quiet around here for another week or so - my folks are visiting, plus we have some other events we're involved with. I will be back on Saturday, though, as I'm taking part in a Sketch "Tea Party." Check back then!!

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Big News from Stampin' Up!

So didja hear yet?!? SU is changing its angel policy! I'm sooooo excited about this announcement! Effective November 15, hand-stamped items made with SU images can be sold in fixed retail locations. And yes, that means online as well. Wooooo Hooooo!! This was one of my beefs with SU, and I'm so thrilled that they're making this change. FYI: You still need to stamp each and every item with one of their copyright images to be in compliance. But happy selling, people!! :)

Saturday, October 13, 2007

Colorized Girls

Well, this is going to be my last "One Smile" card for awhile. I have just recently started to really use my Prismacolor pencils, and I decided to have fun with them on this card. I was going for the vintage, hand-tinted photo look. (And why is that every one of those photos seems to have robin's egg blue in it somewhere?!) Anyway, I had fun coloring it in, and then roughed up the edges, attached a fancy paper clip, and mounted it onto some BasicGrey paper. BTW, the cool script on the background is another image from the set. I'm telling you, it is a great set full of potential!!

OK, off to the more mundane tasks that require my attention. Have a great weekend!

Friday, October 12, 2007

One Smile...

I think by now everyone is aware that I really like the One Smile set from smARTworks - and I just realized that I have two more cards that I never shared! This one uses the sentiment that comes with the image (thus the name of the set). This time I paired it with some BasicGrey papers I found at the bottom of my paper stash (Black Tie line). I also did a little something special with the girls themselves; I've had microscope slides and metal tape for over a year now, but I had yet to actually use any of it. But these darling girls were deemed worthy of the fancy treatment :) I need to practice a bit more with the metal tape (it's really hard to get everything smooth), but it's not bad for a first try. The final touch was a bit of ribbon and a tiny buckle - which makes me think of a belt over a plaid skirt.

Gotta run - I'll post the second one sometime this weekend.

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Retirement Benefits

I love the Emerson line from American Art Stamps! I stamped this fun lady over the weekend, but couldn't decide what exactly to do with her. Well, today's sketch on SCS provided the answer! I decided to pair her up with BasicGrey papers (Scarlet's Letter), and just pulled my colors from that. I colored her in with prismacolor pencils, and then a silver metallic pencil on the necklace. I originally just layered the papers onto my card base (River Rock cardstock), but decided to trim the edge off the front just to add some interest. I really like the result, and need to remember to use that little trick more often! It needed just a bit of embellishment, so I used some black organdy and a silver button.

Now to get her mailed off!!

Tuesday, October 9, 2007

Make Each Day Count

Another fun card with the Leaves #1 Set from smARTworks. I started by stamping the leaf on plain white cardstock with Ancient Page ink, and then I coated it with Ranger Crackle Effects. I used a piece of scratch paper to spread it pretty thin, so I'd get fine "crackling." I let it dry overnight, and then went to work on it this morning. I rubbed in three different Distress inks, then layered it onto a piece of burgundy cardstock (darkened with ink). I also distressed the edges on that, and then accented the panel with a round clip and ribbon (SU). But now what to do for the rest of the card? I settled on the pretty patterned paper from Rusty Pickle; it reminds me of a calico print. I used just a small piece (with the edge distressed, of course), and then adhered it to the card base (SU River Rock). The final touch was the sentiment (from To Life!) which I split using my SAMJ. I'm very pleased with the final result - I think it showcases the gorgeous leaf quite nicely.

Monday, October 8, 2007

Birth Announcements

I did stamp a bit this weekend, but only to finish up these 100 birth announcements. And no, they're not for me!!

I don't enjoy mass production, but I just kept plugging away at these. Although they're quite simple there were a lot of steps. I computer generated the inside info, and stamped a baby hand over the birth info. I then sponged the outside, then layered on the blue gingham paper, photo, and sentiment (that was stamped, punched, and then accented with the ribbon). It felt so good to finally finish them!

Welcome, Josiah!

sentiment from SU

Saturday, October 6, 2007

Vintage Birthday

One of my dearest friends happens to be turning 30 in a few days, and her hubby is throwing a surprise party for her this evening. She loves all things vintage (her house is absolutely gorgeous - all decorated with garage sale finds that I would totally pass by but she sees the potential!) so I wanted to use some more of the K&Co Classic paper, but I hadn't decided exactly what to do. I saw this week's sketch challenge on splitcoast (SC144) and I had my starting point.

The hardest part was choosing which patterns to use - I finally settled on this paisley as the focal point, then layered it with several others. The final touch was the buttons. I wouldn't normally think to do this, but I had my button tin out (from the teeny little one on the flower in my "joy" frame) so I played around a bit. Love the result, although not exactly practical if you're planning to mail the card. But this one will be lovingly hand delivered, so it's all good!!

(sentiment from SU Small Sayings set)

Friday, October 5, 2007

Salt: Joy

The current Salt challenge is to create something about joy. There are so many wonderful verses about joy, but I chose this one because frankly I've been struggling with my attitude lately. When I encounter trials (and it seems there have quite a few lately - nothing major, but just day-to-day stuff that keeps chipping away at me) I certainly have not been considering it joy. So now I have a little reminder to keep in my kitchen.

This cool frame was a find in the dollar aisle of my favorite grocery store, and I think I bought ten of them. It's pretty small; the clipped piece is 3x3. I've made quite a few gifts for other people (I'm down to 2 frames), but this one is definitely staying here. I computer generated the text onto some BasicGrey Phoebe paper, and matted it with another print from the pad. I added the Prima flower and teensy pink button as the finishing touch. I originally was planning something a bit more elaborate, but I really wanted the focus to be on the words. Plus the corrugated brown backdrop and metal clip on the frame set a great stage that didn't need much else!

May you have a joyful day!

Thursday, October 4, 2007

Techniques Galore and freebies, too!

You might have guessed that I love playing with different techniques. I just loving seeing the different effects you can get when you combine ink, paper, and everything from plastic wrap to rocks! :) For this reason, I am a long-time subscriber to the Technique Junkies Newsletter. I seriously cannot say enough good things about this resource. Fresh inspiration arrives every other month, complete with step by step photos! It's especially valuable if you happen to teach classes, as it helps you stay one step ahead of your students. Please check it out! Even if you're not a subscriber, the site has some free tutorials (here and here) as well as some fabulous galleries (listed along the left side of this page). Oh, and if you do happen to sign up, I wouldn't mind if you gave my name as your referral. Commercial over.

This month happens to mark the five year anniversary of the TJ Newsletter, and Pat is offering up some fabulous give-aways throughout the month. Check her blog each day to see what stamp goodies are up for grabs! For example, today is a $20 gift certificate for Hearts in Touch (and coincidentally, that's also the price of one of their gorgeous sheets of rubber!). So be sure to check in daily and leave a comment.

Tuesday, October 2, 2007

Scarecrow - plus a chance to win free rubbah!!

I must say I'm having a ball with my "work" (I almost feel guilty calling it that!) for the smARTworks design team. Each of us received this fun scarecrow set back in August and had to create one project. I had a lot of fun with mine, and even got all crazy and decided to do some detailed cutting and layering (which is definitely not my "norm"). Here's a peek at my straw guy, complete with some raffia bits - and that's a dollhouse fence on the other side. See the full card, along with the other lovely creations, here!

And how about a chance at winning a set of your very own? Check out Susan's blog, and take a guess at where she does the majority of her cutting and packing smART rubber.

Monday, October 1, 2007

Sweet Pea

Some friends of ours just had a baby girl; I'm taking them a meal tomorrow, and made this card to accompany it. I wanted to make something cute without being overly girly, and this green polka dot paper (7Gypsies) was just perfect. I added some rick rack, layered on the pea (complete with wire accent), then stamped the sentiment. Simply adorable!
(all stamps from Wordsworth)