Friday, August 5, 2016

Summer Flowers

Here in the great white north the days are already getting shorter. I am always amazed by how quickly our short summer passes! I decided to hang on to the sun a while longer by creating a cheerful birthday card covered in flowers!

I use partial die cutting a lot in my crafting, and I used it on this card to create a colorful floral border. This technique really adds versatility to my die stash, and I love the interest it gives to this design.


I am off to bask in the sun with a good book while I can! Lots of love, my friends!

Wednesday, August 3, 2016

Summertime Veggies!

I adore Papertrey Ink's Vegetable Garden stamp set, and I've been religiously pinning great ideas using this set for a long time. I finally decided to jump in and actually make two projects off my Pinterest board. (Yay me!)



This card design by Melissa Phillips has all the things I love: a collage of images, cheerful colors, and a big girly bow. Love at first stamp.


This design by Heather Nichols reminds me of a vintage advertising label. I love the subtle layers of white and brown that create visual interest while keeping the design clean and simple. Heather and Melissa always prove that a good design outshines a complicated one!

Thanks for stopping by today! I hope your heart and garden are full on this fine summer day!

Monday, August 1, 2016

Fiesta!

Once in a long while there comes the opportunity to create a perfectly silly card. In this case, a card featuring a googly-eyed cactus and a photobombing llama. I introduce to you ...

BIRTHDAY FIESTA!


This irresistible set of festive images makes me giggle with child-like joy! Seriously.


I started this simple-to-create card with a piece of watercolor paper measuring 4 x 5 1/4". I sprayed a layer of Crushed Curry Ink with a spritzer, let it dry fully, and then sponged a bit more around the edges for a brighter color. I inked up my sentiment in Crushed Curry as well and colored the bottom half with my Pumpkin Pie marker. Then it was time to stamp and die cut my main images. I assembled and adhered the banners and cactus, then added it all to a Tempting Turquoise A2 card base. The llama peeks up off the front of my envelope for a little extra silliness.

This project will make someone's special day, and the cute imagery made mine! Happy stamping!

Friday, July 29, 2016

Something Foxy ...

I did a little happy dance when I saw the new set called Foxy Friends in the annual catalog! I ADORE the fox "thing," and even though I already own three fox stamps, this collection had to come to my house. After all, it's not just a fox ... it's a cat, raccoon, reindeer, skunk, and so on and so on!

Anyone who has been around my blog knows I adore 3-D scenes, and so this little fox needed his own little foresty place to live. Of course he had to be a diorama card!


This card is a simple 1" diorama that fits into a standard A2 envelope and folds totally flat for mailing. Isn't he so cute?


Here are directions to create your own diorama card!

A2 Horizontal Diorama

1) Cut two pieces of card stock to 5 1/2" x 4 1/4". Score both pieces ½” and 1” from each edge on the 5 1/2” side. Pre-fold along each score line.

2) Die cut a circular window in one piece of card stock to serve as the front window. 

3)Decorate or stamp the back layer to create your scene. Decorate or stamp around the front window.

4)Assemble the front and back of the diorama by taping the two layers together along the outermost 1/2" score lines.


Thanks for getting foxy with me today!

Wednesday, July 27, 2016

Retired but not Forgotten ...

Every now and then I like to take a walk down a stamper's version of memory lane and pull out old friends that haven't see the light of day in a while, and today I have a little collection of projects made with these oldies-but-goodies.

The first is a card I made with the retired set called Aviary. It has a whole bunch of sweet little birds and bird cages, and I thought it would make a cute little blank note card.


Why do I always neglect to use stamped backgrounds? They are so easy and create instant coordination for the main focal point of cards. These bird cages were just perfect for creating a repeating pattern.

The next old set making its return today is called Baby Blossoms. I must admit that I always have trouble finding a use for this set as it dates back to Stampin' Up's pre-photopolymer days and is comparatively a lot of work to layer. I went old school with my stamp positioner though and used it to create this card cased from a design by Colleen Dietrich:



These flowers would make great fillers in a stamped bouquet, which would lend them some much-needed new life!

 Last but not least is the now-retired set called Open Heart that I just had to add to my collection this spring before it retired. I confess that I really only bought this set in order to case many copies of this design by Sylvia Nelson:


I love stamp collages, and Sylvia's design is just a perfect incarnation of everything I love about them. Thanks, Sylvia!

That's all for tonight, my friends! Thanks for visiting!

Monday, July 25, 2016

Summer Sunsets

     Hi, friends! Today I'm back to share the project that I taught at my June craft club meeting. We recently marked our five-year craft-aversary! These amazing women have brought so many laughs into my life, and each month it's a treat to get together. Sometimes we get a lot done and sometimes accomplish nothing tangible at all other than laughing together and decompressing for a while.

     For our project this month, we created a summer sunrise behind the trees in the gorgeous Woodland embossing folder from Stampin' Up. After experimenting a little on my own, I found a few effective ways to approach creating sky effects.


     For our card project, I chose a messy watercolor effect with ink and aqua painters. We used a versamarker and clear embossing powder to create a resist on our trees first, then we painted away with a combination of Baja Breeze, Pool Party, Pistachio Pudding, and Calypso Coral Inks in the background. When the ink was dry, we used a Crumb Cake marker to darken the indented bark on our trees to add a little extra contrast. The effects were all different and just beautiful!


     We hand cut a few gold leaves for more sparkle and then embossed our sentiments in gold on a strip of vellum. What could be more perfect than a little gold thread "nest" and little wooden bird to top it all off? Here are projects by Gia, Stacy, and Lindsay!




(This was Lindsay's first time paper crafting. Like ever. What?)

     In experimenting with the sky for this class, I also tried a version with an ink sponged background. This also turned out nicely, so I used this experiment to create another card with that technique. I added a little red birdie, another strip of vellum, and a sentiment die cut on gold washi tape. I can't wait to use this technique on some winter-themed projects!


     I will bring this long and rambling post to a close! Thanks so much for visiting!

Wednesday, June 8, 2016

Copper is the New Gold

Hi, friends! I want to share a quick card with you today using the "Bitty Bouquet" stamp set from Papertrey Ink, and the latest on-trend product in papercrafting (apparently), copper embossing.

Gold has been the in thing for a while now, but recently I've seen copper popping up all over. On my project this week I decided to add a touch of copper embossing to an otherwise simple card to dress it up a bit.


I die cut and stamped the floral sprays in Lucky Limeade, Blushing Bride, Melon Mambo, Pool Party, and So Saffron, then layered the bouquets over one another with dimensional adhesive. Some little pearls add a touch of pretty.

What do you think of this new copper trend? I would love to see your projects!

Saturday, June 4, 2016

Dinosaurs!

My daughter has been obsessed with dinosaurs since she started school. Yep, my daughter. And I think it's great! When she was in second and third grade she checked out every book in the school library about them, and we began our annual subscription to our local dino hot spot, the Museum of the Rockies, where they have outstanding collections of fossils on display. I don't know what sparks her interest and imagination, but as she grows older, she continues to love dinosaurs.

At school this year, her 7th grade social studies teacher assigned something called a "Passion Project." The kids are supposed to spend one class period per week working on a project they are interested in that they think would make the world a better place. Her second project for the year has been working up scientifically accurate drawings of commonly mis-imagined dinosaur species using current scientific research. Yup, really. I'm not sure how it makes the world a better place, but maybe she makes it a more interesting one!

The stamp set from Stampin' Up called "No Bones About It" is so cute, and it's great for dino obsessed kids of all ages! Since her friend group has similar interests, I made up a few birthday cards for the dino lovers in our lives!


The first is a catalog case that is super simple! I used the brights paper stack and a simple collage stamped panel on Whisper White. I stamped the dino and sentiment twice, then fussy cut and layered one over the other with dimensional adhesive.

The second card is just magic! The two step stamps in this set are perfect for layering and for fun color changing or window projects. Pull the tag on this card and a colorful version of the image appears!



My favorite tutorial for creating magic cards can be found on Splitcoast Stamper's YouTube channel here. Their channel contains great tutorials on all kinds of fun card folds!

Thanks for visiting my blog today! Hope your day is dino-rific!

Wednesday, June 1, 2016

Partial Die Cutting

In my last post I talked a bit about partial die cutting and what a fun technique it can be to expand the usefulness of dies. Stampin' Up has a lovely set of butterfly dies in the current catalog that are great for this technique, and I just found out that they are going to be in the new catalog as well! 

I used the sweet stamp set called "Watercolor Wings" to create a card using partial die cutting and a fun interior pop up element! The possibilities are endless for these butterflies since stamping in different colors will create a whole new look each time!


I stamped my sweet little butterflies in Pear Pizzazz and So Saffron and added a few elements from "Timeless Textures" for interest. A pop of Pool Party on the interior creates a contrast against the butterflies when the card is closed.

Here are a few pictures of the pop up element, which is super basic but a fun surprise when the recipient opens the card.



My interior butterfly uses So Saffron and Blushing Bride for a bit of a color change that is still soft and pretty. Directions for creating this pop up can be found at Julie Davidson's blog here. Julie has a tutorial for a vertical pop up as well! Thanks, Julie!

Jennifer McGuire has a great tutorial on partial die cutting here if this technique is new to you. She has a wonderful YouTube channel with tons of useful information!

Thanks for stopping by today!

Saturday, May 28, 2016

Time for Teacher Gifts!

I have a tremendous appreciation for teachers. My sister is an incredible (and nationally recognized - brag, brag) elementary school teacher, so I hear all about the heartbreak, hard work, and amazing successes that come with her job. Now that my girls are in middle school, we have to spread our appreciation through gifts a little more widely than we used to, but I always try to send a special thank you at the end of the year for all the hard work these amazing people have put in to teach my kids.

To get started on this year's end-of-school cards, I pulled out my PTI Teach and Inspire stamp set. This set has some great heartfelt teacher-themed sentiments, and since you can't have a teacher card without an apple, I also grabbed my Apple Prints set and coordinating dies.


This card layout was originally created by Nichole Heady, and I have made several incarnations of it over the years. I adore scrunchy seam binding bows, and the partial die cutting along the edge is an easy technique with a fun wow factor. 

To create a border using any die, position your top cutting plate so that it is part on and part off your die. The section sandwiched between the two cutting plates will cut through, and the section without a top plate will remain attached. Then trim with a trimmer or craft knife in a straight line between your cut images. Hard to explain but easy to do! Here's a card I did using the same technique and some Halloween pumpkins a while back:


Partial die cutting is an easy way to make dies more versatile. Anyway, back to the topic at hand! My second teacher card uses the images from Teach and Inspire. I love this cute tree, and the sentiments in this set are some of my favorite in all of my extensive stash. (Insert guilty grin.)


I plan to create a nice card for each teacher to pair with a modest thank you gift or treat. I am so grateful for the teachers in my life who inspired me to pursue the things I still love today. What a gift they are to the world!