Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Holiday greeting card

A holiday greeting card for a couple we know who does not celebrate Christmas. I used textured shimmer paper for the poinsettia, added some detail to the petals and leaves using a stylus and used a brad to hold all the layers together. Added the leaves and a swirl to the back and mounted it on an embossed (Swiss Dots - CB) layer along with a piece of silver ribbon. Mounted this embellished layer to a white card front.
I have very little prep left for Christmas - most of the cards were mailed on Monday, parcels mailed last week and only a few last minute items to prep!!
Remember the spirit of the season - peace and love - when you go about your life this coming week and if possible leave some "stuff" aside and spend time with the people you love - make some memories!!


Friday, December 10, 2010

Photo album

A photo book for my grandson! He is just over a year and likes to carry things around so I made him a book with photos of his family - Mom and Dad, sister, pets, grandparents, aunts and uncles and cousins. I used a commercially made album and changed up the front and the back to personalize it and filled it with photos!!
Am on the home stretch of having my Christmas gifts ready for sending out in parcels. Christmas letter today!! Parcels should be out today!!
Cards are just waiting for the letter so by Monday I should all the cards on their way!!


Tuesday, December 07, 2010

Christmas tag

Christmas tags for my exchange tonight!! Bought this Sizzix die at Sweet Sentiments last week and wanted to use right away so I decided to use it for my tags. I cut two - one red - one green and put them back to back. I used red glitter on the green one and green glitter on the red one. I cut two sticky label when I cut out the ornaments which I used to make the glittery ribbon. I like using labels for glitter because it is a dry glue and does not make a gluey mess with glitter. Once the glitter is applied the sticky side of the label is not longer sticky and has a paper back. I just glue it in place with regular glue. I added glitter to the bulby ends of the ornament as well. I glittered the center using labels as well. I cut the tree - removed the backing selectively - first the tree stem - glittered that, then the snow - glittered that and finally the tree and glittered that (MS). I cut a sticker oval just larger than the opening in the ornament and applied it to the back of the oval opening in the red ornament, placed the glittered tree in the middle of the sticky oval and applied blue glitter all around it. I used a simple white oval in the back of the green ornament/tag to give a place to write and added a red cotton string!!
The rounded oval from the middle of this die is a perfect match to the large SU oval so it will be great for layering!!!!!! I love it when tools coordinate!!
Hope you are well on your way to being prepared for Christmas. We have a bit of shopping to do, some wrapping and a few parcels to prepare for shipping. Hopefully by the end of the week it will be all done!! If your list is too long, check it and see if there is anything at all that can be reduced or completely eliminated. If so, take a break and enjoy the sights and sounds of the season!!


Thursday, December 02, 2010

Altered heart ornaments

A challenge to alter "something" was put out on one of my groups so I decided to see what I could find around the house. I found this small heart shape chipboard board book and it seems perfect for making altered ornaments for a community project called Evergreen Memories - similar to Festival of Trees elsewhere. I cut the binding off and trimmed the pages to round them out nicely. I covered the edges with red tissue paper and used gift wrap - red with snowflakes - on the front and back. I traced the hearts, so, after cutting they were just a bit big to fit really nicely so I crumpled them up and glued them down with wrinkles in them which gave them lots of texture and alleviated any issue of not having a perfectly cut outside edge. Once both sides were done I pressed them under weight to make sure the paper was well glued and to keep them flat. I decorated them today using colour printed vintage images, snowflake punchies, and scraps of lace, tulle and ribbon.
I am very happy with how they turned out and I am sure they will make a welcome addition to the tree. There are over a dozen trees that will be decorated by different organizations on the theme of Peace and will be on display at the museum for a couple of weeks. Over the course of the two weeks the public can drop by, enjoy the sound of music provided by local groups along with a tasty treat and get dose of holiday spirit. After wandering through the display they can choose to buy tickets for the ornament raffle. All the ornaments on all the trees are raffled off at the end of the display in support of local charities and programs. So these ornaments are off on an adventure which will ultimately find them a new home. I send them off with blessings!!


Cardmaking - December - sanded and resist!

Love the look and feel of this sanded embossed cardstock!! Sanding highlights the embossing and gives the cardstock this wonderful texture similar to suede!! It works only with cardstock that has a different core colour. Check out Core' dinations which a cardstock with a coloured core - very effective for this technique. Several different companies - Close to My Heat and DCWV - sell white core cardstock which is what I used. Just emboss as usual and then sand the embossed side with a bit of sand paper. Do as much or as little as you like!!
Thrifty Tip: you can easily make your own white core cardstock by painting a sheet of white cardstock with any colour of acrylic paint. Once dry, just emboss and sand!!
The main element features a clear thermally embossed flower image that has had a watercolour wash added to it! Once the watercolour has dried you simply buff the embossing with a cloth or tissue to remove any that may have dried on it and the image "pops"!! Great little technique!! Added a colour printed greeting punched with the SU word window punch!!
Love the simple elegant look of this card!!

It is the beginning of December and we had a wonderful snowfall yesterday!! Huge fluffy snowflakes falling gently to the earth!! What a treat to see the great snowman built by the neighbors and their kids when I got home from class!! Went over and took a couple of pictures after I shoveled the drive way!! I may take another couple today in case he melts away in the next couple of days!! So it is, life is filled with little blessings, everyday!!


Cardmaking - December - glittery!!

Glittery cards!! This sketch features textured paper, a corner rounded embossed rectangle, three flower confetti with glittered centers, some fiber and a decorative strip that was created using blue pigment ink and Star Dust embossing powder!! I created the decorative paper to help the turquoise paper to coordinate with the sparkly fiber, and then, the flowers were screaming for some glitter of their own!! In the end, it all came together but it was a bit of a process to get it there.
The confetti was selling at the craft store last fall as part of a Paula Dean table ensemble. The little bags have a lot in them!! I used only half the bag on this set of cards - I have another bag!! So come spring there will be more cards created with these little turquoise flower confetti!! I added blue glitter glue to the centers. The fiber I added as the last element by centering the glittery accent in the middle of the strip and wrapping the two ends around the brads trimming off any excess afterwards.
Cards with glitz are just fun!! Some of the girls brought their own shimmer spray to class so theirs got an extra layer of shine as well.


Cardmaking - December - tag cards

Another shaped card!!!! I trimmed the corners on the decorative paper first, glued it to the card front and then trimmed the card!! Much easier than cutting the card first and trying to get the decorative paper right!!
This sketch features a decorative paper background (right hand one is pieced from scraps), a ripped greeting "snow" layer and a tree die cut!! I love this little tree - Marianne Design - which you can get at Ecstacy Crafts. It is so versatile!! I will be using it for Christmas cards next year!! I added double layered circle punchies (3/4" and 1/2") punched with a 1/8" hole at the top of the card, punched through the card front and threaded through some fiber which I tied on the front with a double knot. This gives less bulk at the top of the card which makes it easier to insert into the envelope. Again, if you preferred not to make this a thank you card you just could reverse the greeting layer and glue the plain side up.


Cardmaking - December - pleated paper

At my cardmaking class last night we made thank you cards for blessing those who will bless us over the Christmas season!! It is really nice to have your cards ready to go so you can immediately acknowledged a gift, a great meal and the thoughtful gestures that will come to you over this wonderful time of year!!
This card sketch features a piece of decorative paper, some pleated tissue paper, ribbon and a stacked flower embellishment attached with a brad. I provided coordinating colour printed greetings as well which allowed the participants more flexibility - without it the card can be used for another occasion!!
Thrifty tip: I have seen quite a few cards with pleated ribbon lately and love the look so was wanting to add this accent to one of my cards. I read on Andrea's blog that she had used brown paper from lunch bags to pleat so it started me thinking about using paper!! I finally decided on tissue paper because that is what I had that was the right colour and it is super flexible. I crumpled the tissue, ripped it into strips - some thin others a little wider. I layered the thin ones over the wider ones and used my sewing machine to sew them together adding pleats as I went along. I created a very long piece by just adding pieces where I needed them as I went along and cut it into smaller sections later. FUN!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I will definitely be doing that again!!!!!! It is great because tissue paper comes in so many colours and designs and is relatively inexpensive!! Be sure to be saving any of the great tissue paper that shows up over the holidays for your cardmaking!! So versatile!!

Be grateful for everything in your life - friends, family, getting together, gifts, kindnesses, love, laughing, joy, fun and all that happens!! Christmas is a special time of blessing - both in what you give and what you receive - do both!!


Saturday, November 20, 2010

Altered CD - vintage Santa

An altered CD for a swap in one of my groups!! The theme was Vintage Santa so I dug up some scraps of decorative papers and got started. First thing I did was make a sketch of each section - front cover, inside cover, inside back and back cover. I decided which elements would go in each section - images, decorative paper, cardstock, etc. After working out the layering on each section I started cutting paper and gluing it into place. I used LOTS of double sided tape to make sure all the pieces will stay put. The front cover features a colour printed vintage Santa, a stamped "memories", decorative paper, a little strip of lace, olive ribbon with a burgundy "bow" and a piece of burgundy cardstock. The lace and ribbon wrap to the back of the cover and are hidden by the pieces on the inside front which is why I worked out all the layering before I cut and glued anything to the CD.
To the left you can see the front and back in one scan. The back features coordinating decorative paper, an ivory cardstock strip trimmed with scallop scissors and embellished with dots and a line in burgundy marker, a strip of olive cardstock and some burgundy cardstock at the very top. Went with cardstock because I wanted the back to have very little that would interfere with the CD laying flat. The inside cover (left) features burgundy cardstock, a scallop border punched piece of olive cardstock embellished with burgundy ribbon and a layered strip of decorative paper. I cut little notches for the plastic edging so that all the piece fit in neatly. The back cover (right) features a layer of decorative paper, a burgundy strip of cardstock trimmed with scallop border punch and an accordion book which has been embellished with some decorative paper and a little boat sticker which I received this week from my Secret Santa and it was the perfect colours for this project!!!!!!!!
On the left a photo of the accordion book inside the CD. Four and a half pages in ivory cardstock embellished with decorative paper and two more stickers!!
All of the pages and sections were stippled with ink to give them a nice vintage feel.
The recipient will be able to add a few photos and have a cool little album for her 2010 Christmas memories!!
I loved the challenge of creating this project and am very happy with the finished product. Would make a wonderful gift for grandparents filled with photos of their grandchildren. Certainly done in other colours would make a cool little brag book for any event!!


Thursday, November 18, 2010

Home for Christmas tags

Created these house tags for a swap on one of my groups. Theme was Home for Christmas so I searched for images on a clipart CD until I found a couple that spoke to me and I created tags using them as inspiration!!
The first one reminds me that Christmas, at one time, was all about the basics - friends, food and family!! People were grateful to be home with a fire burning and loved to prepare good food and plenty of it so when friends and family dropped they could share from their bounty. Stories were told, experiences were shared and a year's worth of blessing would be acknowledged. It was all about getting together and sharing!!
To create this tag I applied white gesso to a book page and stamped it with a large background stamp to add texture. Glued it to the house shape and trimmed it to the edges. Outlined the house with a black Sharpie and added yet more texture with a fine tip Sharpie marker to the interior surface of the house. Added the heart and framed photo with 3D foam tape and wrote the words and hearts by hand.
The second one reminds me of Christmas when I was a kid. It was always exciting to see cars pull into the yard one by one spilling people, food and presents as they came. Often, people had traveled distances in cold and less than desirable weather to be part of Christmas at our house. Cars would be plugged in or run several times during their stay so they would start, in the well below freezing temperatures, when it was time to head home. We would go to church and open presents when we got home. We always hoped that our one big present would be one of the items we had picked out of the Sears catalogue after months of perusing and making lists. We played board or card games, ate sweets, played outside and went for walks or ice skating!! It was about family and getting together.
For this one I added a bleached navy cardstock to the top and bottom and layered colourful scraps in between. Over the center section, I added a strip of sheet music. I coloured the frame black, mounted the image and added it to the tag with 3D foam tape. Added stitching with a black sharpie on the light areas and with a white gel pen on the dark areas. The heart is also mounted with 3D foam tape and the words are hand written.
I am getting into the Christmas mood. Have been creating Christmas card all year long and just all kinds for classes during the month of November. This was a fun little project and I am happy with the way they turned out!!


Cardmaking - November - Christmas Santa

I love this swirl embossing folder (Crafts Too)!!! You can check it out along with several others I have used at Ecstacy Crafts!!
I do find that you have to cut your cardstock just a slight bit over the 5.5" so the swirl pattern doesn't fall off the edge of the card but it is such a versatile design!! I used it last month for this card. I colour printed a vintage Santa from a clipart CD that fits nicely in the opening. Created the scallop greeting using a scallop punchie (SU) and a 1 3/8" punch (SU) to cut out the colour printed greeting. The metal embellishment used to be a brad but getting it properly positioned was going to be difficult so I snipped off its tangs and added 3D foam tape to the back which worked perfectly!! Another quick and easy card!!


Mitten card template!!

If you would like to make your own mitten Christmas cards here is the template I used to create mine. Click on image and download to your computer and print on a 8.5"x 11" sheet of cardstock!! Enjoy!

Angel policy: you can make cards for sale with this template. Please send your friends to this post on my blog to download their own copy for their use.

You do not have permission to copy and distribute this file in any manner and/or claim it as your own when submitting cards for publication!!


Cardmaking - November - Christmas mittens

Mittens!!!!!!! Have been wanting to make a shaped card for quite a while and finally just did it!! I created the mitten shape in a layout program (Corel Draw) and printed it on the back of the cardstock. Folded the card with the printing on the outside and cut out the shape. Added an embossed rectangle to create a cuff and added a snowflake border in white to jazz it up a bit. The colour printed greeting was distressed and mounted with 3D foam tape. Added snowflake punchies and a stitched border to the edge using a white gel marker!! Love it!!!
To top it off I added a "snowball" (white cardstock circle) to the inside where you can write your message!!
These are cute!! It is a real change from the standard Christmas card and would be great for those who are young at heart on your list!!


Cardmaking - November - Christmas snow scene

I have been using my new tools!!
Here I used my largest Oval Nestibilities to cut out a winter scene I stamped in brown on white cardstock. I added a bit of chalk and a dotted border around the edge to just define the oval and highlight the image. Layered the image over scrapbook paper on a warm red card and added a colour printed greeting layered on brown with two silver brads!! Quick and easy!!
Themed packages of scrapbook paper are great for creating cards that have a coordinating look for making sets of cards!! Consider making a few sets for giving to those on your list that are hard to buy for or have everything. We all like to send special Christmas cards to our best friends and handmade ones certainly fit the bill!!


Cardmaking - November - Christmas poinsettia

Christmas cards!! Had a great class last night and they loved the cards!!
For these ones, I started with decorative scrapbook paper, added a red layer below, an ivory decorative strip trimmed with decorative scissors and a green ribbon!! The poinsettia is stamped in red and clear embossed on an ivory scallop (N)*. I added some green watercolour to soften the image a bit. The top one also has gold glitter glue added to the center of the flower and on each scallop for a bit of bling. It is mounted to the card front over the ribbon using 3D foam tape. The NOEL greeting (Quietfire) is gold embossed and punched out with an oval punch (SU). They are also embellished with watercolour to soften their look.
I like the soft muted look of these traditional Christmas colours!!
*Thrifty Tip - to save time when prepping for this class I embossed the poinsettia images in the oven!! Heat oven to 325F and place your stamped images with embossing powder on the back of a clean cookie sheet. Place in oven and 30 seconds later they are all embossed - a dozen at a time!! You have to watch very closely because if left too long the embossing powder will melt into the paper!! Great if you are embossing images for cards made in lots - Christmas, invitations, etc.


Christmas exchange cards & contest

Decided to create a card for Class Act's contest and while I was at it made several - one for my group exchange on Tuesday and a couple for my CCE card exchange!
I love this snowflake image!! It is a Class Act image and they are having a Christmas card contest right now!! You just need to create a card with a Class Act or Chapel Road stamp and send in a scan. The prize is a rubber stamp - so in the end it is a win-win situation. You have one more card for your Christmas card stash and you could win more rubber!!
I stamped the snowflake on a white circle, embossed it with Stardust embossing powder, used my fun foam stamp* to add colour to the center and layered it on a blue scallop (Nestibilities). Started with a white card and added a greeting. The "let it" is a font to which I added a flourish and then colour printed on the white card. The "snow" is a Quietfire stamp which I stamped and embossed with the same Stardust embossing powder. I layered over that a decorative paper which I created. I first printed an all over pattern of snowflakes in blues like the one I used for this card and added blue watercolour washes using ink from my stamp pad. I ripped the bottom edge to reveal the greeting on the card. I added a layered white snowflake border (MS) over the scallop accent to finish off my card.
*Thrifty Tip - you can create your own stamps using fun foam!! Just cut out any shape, mount to wood or acrylic with double sided tape and use with your ink pads!! For the snowflake center I stamped the image on fun foam and cut out the center section. Works really well for highlighting that area. Consider using the precut fun foam shapes - snowflakes, snowmen, stars, hearts, etc!!

I am well on my way for having all my Christmas cards made for this year. There is lots of inspiration here if you need some quick and easy ideas. More coming in a bit!!


Tuesday, November 09, 2010

Christmas Zentangles

Another fun swap on one of my lists!! I spent a couple of hours quietly drawing - adding lines to create shapes into outline letters I printed with a chunky font. It is great to have a good outline to follow. After that, it is all about deciding where the lines need to be, adding texture and varying the light and the dark for good contrast in the overall image. I have never zentangled words before but I have created zentangles in letters for monogram cards and some in squares!!
I am sending these off to my partner for this holiday themed swap and look forward to the ones I will receive in return!!
Christmas is a great time to be creating zentangles!! I have created these large enough to be framed so she can use them as art in her home every holiday season!! I have not added any colour because it keeps the art more graphic and black and white can be framed in any colour to coordinate with the current decor. So I challenge you to create a few zentangles for the holiday season! Print a whole bunch and add them to your holiday cards, frame a few to adorn your home or make a set of cards or some framed art as gifts for those who have everything!!

Be creative this Christmas and add a bit of your art in your home!!


Monday, November 08, 2010

Heart Ornament

Thanks to a friend of mine I have a few of these die cuts to play with - adorned heart Nestibilities!!
I created this ornament using two die cuts - there are three in the set - and simply inserting the red into the white and adding a backer to keep them nested. White embossed the word love on the red heart.
The Love stamp is a new one! Won it at a class on Quietfire's community two weeks ago!! Suzanne makes rubber stamps from her wonderfully calligraphed sayings!! I am looking forward to incorporating the rubber stamps I won into my projects in the next little while!!
Sending off this little heart with some love to a special person!!


Sunday, November 07, 2010

Christmas - tags

Tags are always fun for Christmas!! Here I have teamed them up with a little bit of ribbon and some snowflake punchies!! The background paper is decorative paper - light blue and white - which has been colour printed with an all over pattern of snowflakes!! I also added stitching with a white gel pen. The snowflakes are a font (WWflakes) which I cut and pasted one at a time, duplicated, coloured and resized to create this all over pattern. The embossed greeting has been cut from cardstock embossed with the greeting embossing folder from CraftsToo from Ecstasy crafts!!


Christmas cards - Queen Anne's lace

I love the look of pressed Queen Anne's lace for Christmas!! These surely are the snowflakes of summer and once pressed can present your holiday greetings most elegantly!! I created this card so the central scalloped element can be removed and used as an ornament on a tree!!
The main element features an ivory scallop (Nestibilities), a pressed flower attached with a single glue dot in the center and a clear scallop, cut from packaging, that protects the flower. I have attached the clear scallop using a small piece of double sided tape beneath the hanger (green crochet thread) which securely attached the two scallops. I punched a 1/16" hole at the top of the card to pass the hanger to the inside of the card where it is attached with invisible tape. This will allow easy removable once it has arrived at its destination. The two snowflake punchies (MS) help to keep the scallop ornament situated on the card and provide a link to the colour printed greeting. The background is gift wrap that has been stamped with an all over snowflake pattern.
So consider using pressed botanicals in your Christmas greetings - small cedar branches, small ferns to simulate Christmas trees or small red oval shaped leaves (euonymus or contoneaster) to create poinsettias!! They are really great combined with handmade paper!!


Christmas cards - Shimmer and Glitz

The main feature of this card is the shimmery fabric!! It is similar to vellum when it comes to attaching it - you have to do it discreetly so the adhesive does not show through. In this case, I used some double sided tape behind the greeting and several tiny pieces behind the snowflakes which pretty much disappeared once they were well burnished from the front. The ribbon which is attached to the inside of the card front fortunately keeps the left hand side of the fabric secure and the brad through the fiber snowflake on the right mechanically adheres the fabric to the card. I used shimmer paint on the cardstock before I embossed the greeting with a little embossing folder!!
The shimmery fabric is often featured as a gift wrap at this time of the year and I have purchased it with several different designs including snowmen and script holiday greetings!! Follow this link for information on making your own shimmer paper using supplies you probably have at home!!


Christmas cards - batik snowmen

These cards are part of ones I created for the girls that requested kits for my last class!! Wax resist - I am still on that kick!! I used the embossing folder (crafts too - Ecstasy crafts) open, placed the paper on the "bumps" and rubbed on clear wax to which I later applied a wash of watercolour!! Once dry, you just have to wipe the waxed areas to remove any colour which really makes the image pop. Because this image takes up so much of the card front I chose to add a simple colour printed greeting at the top. I mounted the greeting with a small piece of 3D foam tape in the middle, punched holes through all the layers on either end and inserted the ribbon, wrapped it around the card and tied the ends in a double knot on the front. Quick and easy and can be made up in a wide variety of colours!!


Saturday, November 06, 2010

Christmas cards - let it snow!

A cute little snowman embellishment is the 3D element on this card!! Can you tell I got a new border punch!! It just seemed to work so well for this batch of Christmas cards!! The background paper features a digital stamp - one I created myself!! It was fun to do and I am happy with how it turned out!! There is very little contrast in the paper - light blue and white - which makes it the perfect candidate for printing on!! I laser printed the greeting, cut the sheet into quarters, stamped on some mini snowflakes and then ripped the pieces in two!! Glued the two pieces on the card front leaving a gap to give the look of a snowbank!! Attached the snowman with 3D foam tape and glued on a random amount of snowflake punchies. I highlighted them with glitter glue and added some to the border as well. Always add your glitter glue the very last thing and set the cards aside to dry!!
There was a lot of creative use of glitter glue today!! Some highlighted the swirls and others attached their little punchie snowflakes with it - gave them little blingie halos!!


Christmas cards - three trees

Lots of white and texture on this one!! The background features dots created by the Swiss Dots (CB) embossing folder. I glued a layer of white tissue over the bottom third of the card to simulate a snowbank and added an embossed greeting with 3D foam tape which works the best with very dimensional elements. I used a Crafts Too embossing folder to emboss the greetings - 6 greetings at a time!! You can check out Ecstasy Crafts to find a variety of versatile embossing folders!!
I used a Sizzix Movers and Shapers die to cut the little trees and then embossed them with the D'vine swirl embossing folder (CB). I borrowed the die from a friend which is a great way to make the best use of your tools and supplies and provides some very nice quality crafting time!! The top of the card features a ribbon which looks like it has a bow tied in it but, in fact, it is an illusion. I came up with this option because some of the girls have trouble tying bows and this technique gives you the look in two easy steps. Attach a straight flat piece of ribbon to your card gluing the ends to the inside of our card with double sided tape. Now, take a smaller piece, 3" or so, slip it under the flat ribbon and tie a single knot, pulling tight. Voila!! the look of a bow without the fuss!!
Some of the girls used markers and chalks to highlight the embossing on their cards which adds yet more dimension and interest!!


Christmas cards - heart

I really like the contrast of red and white in this card!! It features a metal heart embellishment which I attached to the greeting layer using glue dots and features a simple little snowflake in the center oval to finish it off. The little red snowflake is a punchie produced when I created the snowflake border. I created the greeting in a layout program (CorelDraw) and colour printed it!! The white layer below the red snowflake border is actually flocked ribbon which I cut with a Borderabilities die by Spellbinders. The back of the ribbon was a bit shimmery and had been embossed by my cutting plate which made it interesting, so some of the girls used that to the front instead of the flocked side. Love that others think differently and are willing to do what works for them.
I really love these hearts and it took a while to come up with a design that I was pleased with and showed it off nicely!! Mission accomplished!!
The border punch (MS) is actually called a daisy punch which was a surprise to me when I took it out of its package because I bought it thinking it was a snowflake punch so I guess it will be more versatile than I originally had thought it would be!!


Christmas cards - little pieces of art

We made Christmas cards today!! A whole room of girls - big and little!! It is so fun to design card kits, have people add their own creativity to the supplies and end up with so many different looks by the end of the day!!
This card is simply elegant. I used Mary Engelbreit 3D stickers with glitter as my main element and simply added ribbon to make it look like a little piece of hanging art!! The background is embossed and the little bow is added with a glue dot!! I find that the "bunny ears" technique for tying the bows works the best when you want a nicely shaped bow that lays flat!!
I am always on the look out for interesting supplies for making cards. I bought these stickers after Christmas last year when they were being cleared out at Michaels. This design worked well because it accommodated the variety in sizes of the stickers. I chose cardstock colours that coordinated with the image so we ended up with cards in rather non traditional colours! It was a great opportunity to make good use of my collection of embossing folders.
A quick and easy Christmas card! Something we need come this time of year!!


Saturday, October 30, 2010

WoW bookmarks

Decided to take a break from the class prep and get my white on white bookmarks made up for a swap on one of my groups. White on white requires a bit of creativity. I like to use texture to add interest. I dug out everything that was white - handmade paper, cardstock, embossed paper, netting, fiber, etc. from my box of collage materials (scraps from projects that can be reused). I created a serendipity collage background by just gluing a variety of ripped up pieces from the pile to a piece of embossed cardstock. I used a lot of glue to make sure the items would stay in place, so I let that dry overnight. This morning I cut two squares from my collage to use as the bookmarks' backgrounds.
For the top one, I die cut butterflies (SU) from some wonderful flocked ribbon and three flowers from handmade paper. I added pearly flower stamens for antenna and some covered wire for a body to the large butterfly. Added pearl cotton for bodies and antenna to two others. The flowers I embellished with sequins, a die cut snowflake and a brad and added leaves hand cut from the leftover flocked ribbon.
For the second one, I embossed a little tree die cut (SX), added some glue dots which I rubbed with glitter to add a bit of bling and two snowbanks created from ripped embossed cardstock.
All the elements on these bookmarks were added with glue dots or double sided tape to make sure that all they would remain in place while the bookmark is in use. I also sprinkled baby powder over them and rubbed it in so any remaining glue would be neutralized. Necessary to enausre the bookmark would not stick to the pages of a book when in use.
I glued my little squares to triangles of folded cardstock to create the bookmarks. They sit on the corner of a page. I did add a bit of folded ribbon between the square and the triangle to make removing the book mark from a page easier.
All of the embellishments help add texture to the bookmarks as does the slight variation in the colours of the white papers used.
Another successful project!!

Here is a link to a tutorial on Splitcoast Stampers for making corner bookmarks!!
Here are a few more serendipity collage tutorials - technique zone, scrapjazz, artduscrapbooking (french but great photos) and mixedmediaarts.



Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Handmade paper!

Here is the stack of paper I made over the weekend. I taught papermaking on Saturday afternoon and then finished up the leftovers from the batches over the next day or so!! Great fall colours!!
I love making paper and it is so fun to do!! Imagine reusing/recycling paper scraps into new sheets of paper for crafting with!! It is so WIN/WIN!!
If you are a paper crafter consider becoming a paper maker as well. You will be able to make use of your scraps - any size works - and create very unique and one of a kind papers that will give your projects a very original and distinctive look!!
If you can't get into making your own paper then consider donating your scraps to someone who does!!


Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Quick and easy embossed cards!

These are quick and easy!! The embossing folder is one that is so versatile, manufactured by Crafts-Too and sold locally at Ecstasy Crafts!! My head is spinning with the options but for tonight's class I just went digging into my stash for colourful papers that would best show off this beautiful swirly frame!! I cut the pieces of decorative paper just the size I needed to fit inside the embossed frame, stamped and/or embossed them in black and glued them in!!! That easy!!
So get creative and see how many ways you can use your embossing folders!!


Clear embossing powder resist

Another resist technique!! In this case, I used clear embossing powder as the resist. Stamped the image with Versamark on white coated paper and clear embossed. After some experimentation, I went with Distress inks on these backgrounds. I applied the ink in a circular manner with the pads directly to the paper, rubbed it lightly with a dampened paper towel which softened the inks very nicely and somewhat removed the ink from the clear embossed image. I did go back in with a barely damp paper towel and remove yet more ink from the embossing powder. I think classic dye inks might have worked better for this purpose but I was really liking the look of the distressed inks!!

Thrifty Tip: I did spritz the paper towels after I was done and wadded them up to disperse the inks which works so well with the distress inks. Colourful decorative papers to be used another time!!
I layered the birdie images with a white cardstock layer to which I attached, with double sided tape, a little piece of eyelet trim. Finished it off with a colour printed greeting attached with 3D foam taper. I created the greeting in a layout program (Corel Draw) so it could be punched with my large oval punch (SU). It is a great way to create custom greetings and gives you a wide variety of colour options especially useful when you have a limited amount of stamp pads!!


Glue resist technique

Here is a close up of the decorative paper I created using the glue resist technique described here!! I "printed" with the glue several times on this sheet and the areas blended very well and did not leave obvious edge marks.

So experiment with your embossing folders!! Be sure to scan the paper you create for use in your digital art!

Just another way to use what you already have!!


Glue resist and tag cards

These cards feature background papers created with a glue resist technique!! Yes, I was on a resist technique kick!! In this case, I used my embossing folders, again, to create the resist. I spread glue onto the "bumps" of my open embossing folder with a brayer (be sure to wash both before the glue dries), laid my mustard gold paper on it and rubbed the back to transfer the glue!! Repeat until your paper is covered. Worked very well!! Once the glue was dry I used washes of acrylic paint to add colour to the paper.

After experimenting with a few options I discovered that the easiest way to remove the colour from the glue was to place a sheet of bond paper over the wet one, rub the back of it and pull it off. If you keep using the same paper to remove the colour from the resist you get a bonus sheet of decorative paper you can use at some other time. It may have been the type of glue (wood glue) I used but I found it difficult to remove the acrylic wash from the resist areas once it was dry. I expect white glue would give better resist results. In the end, I am happy with the grungy look of this paper and it suited my colour scheme very well.
The paper is ripped in the middle to give some interest and texture to the background. I added an embossed tag that features a coloured image and attached the whole thing to the card front using 3D foam tape which adds dimension. I love the rick rack which adds a touch of country to these cards and really works with the colour scheme.


Wax resist backgrounds

Here is a sampling of the wax resist backgrounds I created for my class!!
I spent a few hours playing with this technique and finally settled on using coated paper as the substrate because it gave a nicely defined resist image. You can certainly use cardstock or even thinner paper for a different look. Experiment with what you have. You can read the instructions for this technique here!
I used clear wax but you could certainly use what you have for a different look - coloured wax crayons would add a very different dimension to the look of this technique.
I am very happy to have found yet another way to use my embossing folders!!


Wax resist and postage sticker cards

Another successful evening of cardmaking!! Lots of new people and a fairly large group but we managed to get out in good time!!
These cards feature wax resist backgrounds which I created using my embossing folders!! Check out this post for more information on how I did it.
The images are postage stamp stickers made by K&Company which I bought at Michaels when I was there last week. They are all the same size which works well for a class but a variety of designs which I find works well for me in my classes. I like to change up the element and cardstock so everyone willl have
different looking cards.
This is a fairly versatile sketch as the card can be landscape or portrait and the 3D element can also have either orientation which gives several options with the same supplies!!
So, the sticker is mounted on coordinating cardstock and trimmed. The ribbon is attached to the back of the decorative paper and then this element is glued to the card front. I used 3D foam tape to attach the sticker element to the card, overlapping the ribbon, because the decorative paper is a bit waxy!!


Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Birdie exchange card

I am meeting with my card making buddies tonight and this is the card I made for the exchange.
I have been playing with ways of doing resist for my class tomorrow night. Check out the background - it is one of the resists I came up with. A wax resist technique that uses an embossing folder and clear wax!! I placed my paper on the "bumps" of the open embossing folder, rubbed over it with clear wax crayon then added a watercolour wash!! Voila!! A great looking background!!
For this card I mounted my background on a white card front. The bird is also a resist technique - clear embossing powder on white cardstock - to which I added a watercolour wash. They compliment each other. Layered the bird on white and added a bit of lace below that and a colour printed greeting!!
Thrifty Tip: Where do you get clear wax crayons??? I am sure they exist but I created my own by cutting up a bar of paraffin into little bars with a hot knife and then rounding them on griddle surface covered with foil. Works very well. You could use a white wax crayon on white paper, or a yellow crayon on yellow paper, etc which would allow you to use the crayons you have on hand for this resist technique. On the other hand, a crayon of a different colour would give you a totally different look!! Will have to investigate that later!! I found that the rubbing was more defined on paper - I used coated laser printer paper - but you can use paper or cardstock. You can use anything with a textured surface for rubbing as well - fabric, lace, woven mats, screening, texture plates, etc, etc - but I was happy to find another use for my embossing folders.

So play a little today and see what you can do using this resist technique!!


Monday, October 18, 2010

Halloween contest card

Another Class Act contest card!! I received the mermaid as a prize in a previous contest and with this contest's theme being Halloween I decided to see if I could make a card with the mermaid!! I am happy with the card but I think it might need a greeting or something in the lower left hand side but, for the moment, I have left it without.
Stamped the mermaid in black, embossed her with black embossing powder, coloured her in with pearly watercolours in deep green and orange and trimmed her close! Printed off the scary house - internet find - and trimmed it close as well. Added a large punchie in orange - moon - behind the house and cut out a bat from glossy cardstock to add to the sky. Used some pearly gold cardstock for the water and a piece of torn grey cardstock for a rock for her to sit on!! I laid all of these onto a black background and then onto a bright orange card front!!
Halloween is a stretch for me artistically!! Keeping it simple helped me to create a piece I am happy with!!


Thursday, October 14, 2010

Transportation - Steampunk ATCs

Have been working on ATCs for the last day or so!! The theme is Transportation in the Steampunk style!! I first had to do some research to figure out what Steampunk was and then do some searching around on the internet for images!! I did find some free images that would suit the theme so I resized them and printed off my sheet and got busy!! The backgrounds I downloaded from Cemerony - Freebie 11 which is a colourful map of Paris that I thought would be appropriate. The gentleman I downloaded from this Flicker collage group from an artist - artbychristi. The train is a Dover clipart image. The car is just one from the internet somewhere. The lady's dress is from a paper doll image - thought it had credits on the page but, alas, no!! I will see if I can find it and link it when I do. The lady's head is from one of Kelly Burton's collage sheets - I just cut out the head and layered it onto the dress. The woman's face is also cut from somewhere ages ago and I do not know where I got the original.
For the left one I printed the background to which I had added the gentleman's face then using acrylic medium I glued the transparency with the car over it. I surrounded the woman's face with an open metal ring and added some clear acrylic medium to glue them to each other and give it a nice glossy look. The round letters are a set of typewriter letters I created for myself before there were fonts that would do the same thing. I just punch them out with a 1/2" punch. The word " journey" is printed on label using a Dymo font. I added an A inside a black cogged washer - no idea where it came from. You can find star washers - toothed lock washers - at a hardware store and colour them with alcohol inks or Sharpies that would give you the same look.
The one on the right has lots of layers. I coloured the dress and added the head and collar from another image. I trimmed the oval gentleman, glued him to the altered tag, added twill with a safety pin and a little gold heart charm. The train is trimmed close, coloured and glued to the bottom edge. I did add a bit of a book page behind the lady so she would stand out more from the busy background. The little metal disc - $1 store years ago - seems to just belong there!!
So now onto the rest of my day!!


Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Leafy card

Needed a large card - big enough to hold a CD!! I remembered I had purchased a set of the large card and envelopes at the craft store (M) a few years ago so I went searching and found them.
These stamped punchies from my stash worked perfectly for this card!! I layered the nine punchies on green and stamped a greeting which I attached with brads below them. Added some texture to the card front by stamping in light green with a script stamp and added the embellished rectangle to the card front.
Quick (not counting searching time) and easy!!


Thursday, October 07, 2010

Flower ATCs!

Flower ATCs!! I just received my envelope from a flower swap and got a cool little supply of handmade flowers!! Two of them were just what I needed to add to these two ATCs in a trade with Beth. She sent along some Japanese paper in trade for this little house ATC I made a while back!! She always makes great ATCs!!
ATCs are very cool because they are so small they don't take a lot of supplies to make and usually not too much time as well.
For the left hand one I added a black border on my pink ATC blank. Linda often adds these kinds of markered borders to her journal pages and I think they are so neat so I gave it a try. Added an embossed layer and then this layered punchie flower!! Added a black stem with a marker, cut out the colour printed words and glued under the flower!!
For the second one, I found the saying in my stash of goodies gleaned from items that are headed to the recycling bin. Glued my flower on the left of my mustard ATC blank and layered on my saying after I altered it with a bit of yellow ink to help it coordinate with my flower and background. Added a sticker to the lower right hand side and some piercing at the flower's edge. Stippled a bit of green over everything to help give it a cohesive look.


Glittery blue tags!

Worked on these glittery tags yesterday afternoon!! These are for a swap and I am not sure if they are appropriate so I will ponder that for today and see if something else comes to me!!
I started by die cutting the snowflakes (SU SX) from adhesive backed paper and adding fine blue glitter to the sticky surface!! I cut the scallops from mirror card and added Spirelli with blue glittery thread to the edges. I punched out a large snowflake (MS) from the center and backed it with foil (yogurt top) which contrasted nicely with the mirror finish then added the blue glittered snowflakes with a silver brad. For the other side I stamped a little saying in blue all over white and die cut my scallop circles from that. Glued my other two blue glittered snowflakes to these then glued both of the sets to either sides of a larger scallop cut from medium blue cardstock. The last thing I did was add blue Ice Stickles to the scallops on the white and blue layers and left them over night. I have scanned both sides for you to see.
These will be great for the silver challenge on the By Hand challenge blog for this week!!


Wednesday, October 06, 2010

Autumn Leaves Swap card

Got creative this morning!! Worked on a card for an Autumn Leaves swap on one of my groups!! I started with the background paper - it arrived in the mail this week - gorgeous leaves in red, burnt sienna and olive - on a flyer for a vehicle!! I added a black border on all the sides with a marker and all over stamped it with a script stamp in chocolate brown. Before I cleaned my stamp I rubbed the inked rubber on the edges of my green cardstock to just antique them a bit. I stamped three leaves in brown, watercoloured them and added some acrylic sealer to just give them a bit of a sheen. When I used my heat gun to dry them the sealer bubbled a bit and gave them a bit of texture - bonus!! I ripped apart the vellum quote, stippled the pieces with red, green, yellow and brown ink, wrapped them around the background paper and attached this layer to the card front. I added punched leaves which I had embellished with watercolour in an all over pattern and then glued down my large leaves with 3D foam tape in a pleasing arrangement.
Thrifty Tip: I always check my incoming mail for anything that would be good for including in my art - backgrounds, coloured glossy, letters to be cut out, text that can be over stamped, interesting images, etc. Worthwhile checking your recycle bin for items that can be reused - tissue boxes - great for making ATC blanks, clear plastic for die cutting shapes, foil tops from yogurt, etc that can be embossed, newspaper text to be used as backgrounds, boxes that can be used for chipboard, envelopes that can be ripped open and stamped or die cut, an old phone book that can be used as a gluing surface (glue and rip out when too gunky), magazines pages for making paper beads or faux cloisonne, etc.
The weather is cooling and leaves are changing colour!!


Thursday, September 30, 2010

Exchange cards - autumn flowers

The Canadian Card Exchange is back up and running thanks to MJ who has stepped in to handle the next six months!! It is a fun exchange and I enjoy sending and receiving the handmade cards!!
As a background I used printed photos which I received in one of my goodie packages this week in exchange for a little house ATC , added some coordinating ribbon on the bottom edge, a cut out flower embellishment and a distressed colour printed greeting!!
The flower embellishment features white core cardstock which has been embossed (SX) and then sanded.
I acquired some white core cardstock (CTMH) at a garage sale last week and am now going to see how many techniques I can come up with to highlight its unique white core. Did a bit of an internet search for techniques which yielded several ideas I had not yet thought of!! There are several other companies out there that create white cardstock - DCWV (Die Cuts With a View) is one of them and it is available at quite a few different locations including Michaels.


Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Another little house ATC!! I made this one for an "ABC - Anything but a card" challenge on one of my groups. I changed up my house - made it brick instead of wood siding and also created a new front door for it!! Colour washed the siding and the roof and added a little wreath and a new saying "From our house to yours!!" so it would be appropriate for sending as a Christmas card. For someone crafty you could send it ready to be assembled or you can send it as a folded ATC that they get to transform into a little house ornament for their tree!! Would be great to include a tag with the year on it!! So many possibilities!! If you are interested in trading for this little house check out my posting here for the details!!

Thanks to those who have already traded!! I hope you enjoy the little house and get creative with it!!


Saturday, September 25, 2010

Reindeer - Christmas card challenge

More Christmas cards!!
Karen's theme for September's Christmas card challenge is reindeer, so that is where I started. This 4.25" x 4.25" card will also satisfy the "anything but an A2 sized card" on Christmas Cards All Year Round, the "distressed " theme over at Sparkles blog, the ribbon and bows theme over at the Quietfire blog and the "bling" theme over at Crazy for Challenges!!
I used my distressing tool on both layers on the front and stippled the edges with brown ink for a soft distressed look. Layered the scallop circles and mounted it to the card front over the ivory ribbon.

Check out the close up of my "bling". I added some dots of iridescent glitter glue on each scallop and on the lower right hand side and sprinkled on yet more glitter for a very sparkly look!!

I made five of these tonight and have four more in the works which I will finish tomorrow!!

I am really enjoying making Christmas cards!!

Have a great day and thanks for dropping by!!