Friday, April 22, 2011

Anniversary cards

No anniversary cards in my stash so I made a few!!
Had a friend over last night and she brought along her MS heart lattice punch - a nice large punch. So I dug out my red paper scraps and punched out a LOT of hearts!! It is nice to visit and craft - time goes by so quickly!!
I started without a plan, so first, decided to use two hearts on each card. The lattice seemed to be calling for glitz so I added

double sided tape to the back of each of them and applied glitter to the front. I layered them onto white in different configurations to have some variety and added a border of dots to three of them. Layered them onto a coordinating red and decided they needed white below so I cut the layers and embossed each one differently. Added ribbon to three of them and black lace trim to the last one!! Layered onto red and the last one I layered onto black before layering it to the red card.
Do you ever just start creating without knowing where you are going? I don't usually, but, after a relaxing day and no time pressure to get these done, just starting and going with the flow worked for me today. Four cards in less than a couple of hours - that is good for me!!


Thursday, April 21, 2011

Cardmaking - April - used greeting card

We all have greeting cards that we have received and saved because of who sent them or because of the occasion that was being celebrated!! This technique reuses images from used greeting cards!! I trimmed the card fronts to 3.75" x 5" and embossed them with a stitched plaid embossing folder. I sanded the embossing lightly until the white from the card beneath started to appear - nicely highlighted the stitches. You could use any embossing folder but I would recommend one that is not too busy - lines or polka dots would work well. For those without embossing folders consider embossing the image using your scoring tool. Scoring lines in a grid pattern from the back will emboss them on the front. I added a ribbon and my butterfly accent. The butterfly is a digital image I downloaded from the internet. I laser printed it onto cardstock, watercoloured and trimmed it. I attached it to my card using a modified (stretched to a thin line) glue dot which allowed me to lift the wings for a 3D look!!
Thrifty tip: Don't have a scoring tool - create one. Take two pieces of cereal cardboard the same size - cut one in half and glue the two pieces to the other leaving a slight gap (1/16" to 1/8"). Place your image upside down over the gap and use a bone folder or stylus (crochet hook, knitting needle, pen cap) to score the lines you want. It is easier to line up the score marks if your tool is longer than your image.
This card reuses an paper image and features a digital image both of which are earth friendly!!
Have my cards have inspired you to be more earth friendly??
I encourage you incorporate a few new techniques in your art - it will reduce your impact and kick start your creativity!!


Cardmaking - April - serendipity

Serendipity is a collage technique that uses paper scraps!! You simply glue a variety of small paper scraps to a cardstock base and embellish it once it is dry. In this case, I over stamped the collage with silver pigment ink, thermally embossed it with silver embossing powder and added just a bit of colour using a flourish stamp with permanent ink in a coordinating colour. Using my paper trimmer, I cut the collage into 1" strips, then trimmed the strips to 3.5"!! They are little pieces of art!! I combined three of them onto a layer, added a couple of flower punchies with a silver brad and stamped a greeting. At class, I gave everyone the opportunity to silver emboss a greeting if they wished!!
Serendipity is a earth friendly technique!! You can use ANYTHING for your substrate!! You need light weight cardstock - consider junk mail, a card front or layer discarded because of a mistake, packaging from the recycle bin, covers from annual reports, catalogs and paperbacks, etc. The smallest I would start with would be 4.25" x 5.5" and 8.5"x 11" is plenty large!! For collaging onto this surface almost anything goes!! You need scraps about 1" in diameter preferably ripped so the edges are soft and easily glued down. In the way of paper, you can use old greeting cards, calendars, catalogs, junk mail, gift wrap, tissue paper, napkins, decorative paper, envelopes, paper bags, packaging, instructions, manuals, artwork, labels, etc. You can also consider adding lace, fabric, mylar, foil, tyvek, mesh, etc.
For these pieces I chose similar coloured papers from my "box for collage" - turquoise and blue for the one and purple and pink for the other. I ripped all the scraps into smaller pieces (1" or so) in uneven and random shapes. Armed with a tray of scraps, a glue stick and some discarded cardstock I started applying glue to the back of the pieces and gluing them down. Lay them next to each other or overlap them - whatever works!! Sometimes I tear the pieces smaller still to fill in gaps. Don't worry about going over the edges - that can be easily trimmed later. Really mix up the colours and texture - like pieces should not be adjoining!! Once you have covered the whole surface, double check that all the edges are well glued down and leave to dry. I would recommend over night to ensure all the glue has dried. It may not look fantastic when you are done -no problem because you can embellish it by stamping with colour, embossing with embossing powder, colour washing with acrylic paint, adding glitter, spritzing with shimmer mist, etc!! My favorite is to stamp with a script stamp and emboss with metallic embossing powder!! Works every time!! Once your collage is finished you can use it to make accents for your art by cutting it into any shape - rectangles, squares, hearts, circles, snowflakes (use a die) - whatever you want!! Straight lines means no waste!!
If you need a visual you can find tutorials here and here! If you would prefer a video tutorial check one out here.
So this weekend consider doing your bit for the environment and create a Serendipity collage while you are watching TV or listening to your favorite music!! Should you also be enjoying some chocolate, incorporate the wrappers into your collage - no evidence!!


Cardmaking - April - corrugated cardboard

These cards feature corrugated cardboard from a box that was retrieved from the recycle bin!! Removing the top layer to expose the corrugations was a learning experience which I will delve into in a layer post.
The flower elements were created using corrugated cardboard punchies - SU flower punch - and layered cardstock buttons - two circle punchies, two holes and a double knotted thread. The leaf is also a punchie! The greeting is a digital stamp - SU Salebration CD - that I embellished with another word, placed in a square frame and laser printed. They were trimmed with decorative scissors.
I arranged all the elements onto the card front which had already been layered with am embossed layer. Once I was happy with my layout, I simply glued all the elements in place.
My previous post has more information about the earth friendly benefits of using digital stamps!!
Reusing items, in your crafting, that would normally be disposed of is also a way of reducing - less new supplies which costs you less and may even save on gas because it is one less trip to the retail outlet. It also introduces a new way of thinking and introduces more creativity which may give your art a new look!! Think about it and do one little thing today to reduce, reuse or recycle something in your art this week!!


Cardmaking - April - woven handmade paper

To honour Earth Day I have incorporated some aspect of the Three R's into my cards this week for cardmaking!
These cards feature woven handmade paper scraps!! I created the handmade paper by recycling paper scraps left over from my paper crafting - cardstock bits along with used bond paper and anything else I thought would make the paper interesting including grass, petals, fiber, threads, etc. Fun!!
For this card I needed strips to create the woven paper background. Most of my scraps were already strips which had been trimmed from larger sheets for previous projects so most of the work had already been done. I trimmed the strips to size - longer ones for going across and shorter ones for weaving in between. It is easier to weave in the short strips when one end of the long ones have been stabilized so I applied a piece of double sided tape to the short end (left hand side) of the card front and placed the ends of the long strips onto the tape. Then, it was just a matter of inserting the short pieces over and under each long piece and alternating the over and under process until I had woven a piece large enough for the card front. I gently lifted the weaving, applied glue to the card front, repositioned it and applied firm pressure to adhere them together. I love the soft subtle look of the woven handmade paper!!
The images are laser printed digital stamps from StampinUP!! I chose the CD of images that was offered during Saleabration as one of the freebies. It contains digital images of all of the Saleabration freebies - paper, buttons, ribbon, stamp sets, etc. Using Corel Draw I was able to import the digital stamps, resize and combine them to create what I wanted. I simply laser printed the images onto cardstock - voila! images for my cards!! A little watercolour and some 3D foam tape and I had beautiful accents to layer over my woven handmade paper!!
In the spirit of the Three R's, making handmade paper is a win win!! You recycle your paper scraps into wonderful paper which you can incorporate into your creations!! I am a fan of making your own paper but if you are not, please consider donating your paper scraps to a friend that is!!
Using digital stamps is very earth friendly!! No wood or clear mounts, no rubber, no foam, no storage problems and no packaging if you download them!! I use Adobe Photo Elements to change the colour of my digital stamps and you can certainly create full layouts there as well!! The digital stamps are far less expensive and many are available at no cost. I have used several in the last few days for creating this cupcake card and this masculine birthday card. Digital stamps do have some limitations. They require a computer, software and a means of printing what you create. And, you can not thermally emboss them on cardstock!! It is best to use chalk or pencil crayons if you use an ink jet printer. You can use watercolour and copic markers as well with laser printed images.
So consider investigating digital means for some of your cardmaking and scrapbooking!! I am enjoying the new digital stamps I have acquired. I have created folders on my computer for each company I download images from so I can find them when I want them. If you decide to start using digital images organize them right away - create the folder BEFORE you download the images!!


Star card - reuse

With Earth Day coming up I thought I would see how much I could incorporate the three R's - reduce, reuse, recycle - in my card designs this week.
On this card I am reusing a piece of corrugated cardboard (1) from a box that was in the recycle bin. It took a bit to get the knack of undoing the laminations of the cardboard to expose the corrugations but more about that in a different post!!
It has a neat kraft look so I decided to use that as my colour theme. For my main element I designed a star, made myself a template and cut one from the corrugated cardboard. For the top layer I used an old music sheet (2) to create another star - another reuse item because some of these booklets are in poor shape to be used as music sheets. I traced my cardboard star onto the paper and cut inside the lines to give me a perfect star layer. I found this perfect metal button (3) - another reuse item - in my button stash and tied in some coordinating string to finish off my accent. The embossed background (4) is my next reuse item - it was sitting on my desk because it was rejected when I was creating this card. I added some mesh (drywall tape) and a leftover birthday greeting (5) layered onto a scrap of cardstock (6)!! Six reused items in this card!!
I challenge you to incorporate some reuse items in your creations this week!! I will be using this theme for my cardmaking cards this week as well.


Monday, April 18, 2011

Special card!

A special little girl is turning 4 next week!!! Her new favorite colour is purple so I incorporated it into her card along with this wonderful cupcake!! The cupcake image is a digital stamp from Beccy!! Her images are wonderful!! I needed four candles so I printed more than one image, cut out an extra candle and added it with 3D foam tape. Watercoloured them and added just a bit of glitter because cards for little girls (and big ones) look best with a bit of bling!! I mounted the image to the card front, which was already layered with an embossed layer, using eyelets. Added the greeting with 3D foam tape.
She will have a happy day with friends and family, cake and surprises because she has a great Mom. She will enjoy our gift once spring arrives!! It is always fun to make cards for those special people in our lives!!


Sunday, April 17, 2011

Embossed card

A variety of embossing on this card! Used a new embossing/die cutting die to create the heart oval on this card! I embellished it with purple ink and afterwards added some white Brilliance ink to give it a bit of pearlescence. I traced the edges onto a coordinating decorative paper and trimmed it inside the line so it would layer nicely behind the oval. I tied on a short piece of white ribbon with a single knot, added double sided tape behind the little heart and added some coordinating glitter for just a bit of bling before I layered them. I used a new Tim Holtz embossing folder - Regal Flourishes - to emboss the edges of the card by inserting the sides in different sections of the folder at an angle and partially embossing the cardstock until I had embossed all the edges. I slipped in the little greeting - colour printed and punched with the word window punch (SU) - in under the swirls at the bottom.
This oval is the perfect size for cardmaking and I really like how this card turned out!!


Wednesday, April 13, 2011

DH Birthday card with digital image

DH's birthday is next week and I thought I would get his card made early as we are celebrating on the weekend!! I incorporated a lot of texture by using dyed fabric tape, mesh and corrugated cardboard!! He has treated himself to a new tool so I thought this image was appropriate!! I downloaded the image from Beccy's blog. She has some really great digital stamps!! Her newest one is a cute bunny which would make great Easter/spring cards.
This scrap of corrugated cardboard was headed to the recycle bin but instead I ripped the paper off one side to reveal the corrugations and distressed it with some walnut ink. The fabric tape was also distressed with walnut ink - just painted it on and dried it with my heat tool!! I painted the laser printed image with walnut ink and added silver pencil crayon to the metal parts - perfect!! Once I started layering the pieces on my card I added a piece of mesh (drywall tape) which is so appropriate!! Added a small round layered greeting with 3D foam tape!!
It is great to have such a perfect image for making this card!! Be sure to check out Beccy's blog!! I have added a link under Online Digital Resource on the right hand side of my blog!


Sympathy card

Needed a sympathy card this week so I decided to use my newly acquired Sizzix tree embossing folder. I embossed the tree on dark green cardstock, trimmed the edges, rounded the corners and distressed the edges. Cut an ivory layer and did the same then layered them. I mounted this element to a card front which I had previously embossed with a Cuttlebug embossing folder. I added a ribbon tied with a double knot and a layered greeting.


Friday, April 08, 2011

Christmas skinny

I started this project wanting to create a Skinny - 3x5" for an exchange on one of my groups. I started thinking about a theme and what I would like to create and in the process checked my to do list to see if there was any inspiration there. Christmas cards - I am behind on the challenges on Sylvia's blog so I decided to see if I could combine this challenge and the skinny swap. It was a done deal once I established that the skinny would fit in a #8 envelope!!
I also discovered that cards that fit in #8 envelopes also make very efficient use of 12x12 scrapbook paper - 8 layers per sheet!! So I started with the scrapbook paper layer, chose some taupe cardstock that coordinated and cut them to size - 11" x 3.5" scored and folded at 6.25". Another efficient aspect of this process is that the scrap -11" x 1.5"- that is left from cutting the two cards from one piece of letter sized cardstock is the perfect width for completing the front of the card. So I trimmed the leftovers to 3.5" x 1.5", attached them with double sided tape which also helped to adhere my decorative paper to the card front and left the inside nice and neat!! I added a piece of paper lace that I created with my new SU punch - perfect little scalloped border with the holes already punched!! Next, I went looking for an image that would coordinate - this SU snowflake with the Peace greeting was perfect with its somewhat distressed look. To fulfill the requirement for the February swap there had to be some musical element - so I stamped a strip of cardstock with SU musical wheel stamp. I distressed the top edge, cut the bottom edge with scallop scissors and pierced a hole in each scallop. Now I needed embellishments!! I added a snowflake punchie in white attached with a mini white brad and a metal snowflake layered onto a string bow and attached with glue dots.
I used my sewing machine, a needle dedicated to paper and some white thread to add a lot of stitching - to both sides of the musical strip, to attach the scallop paper lace to the bottom of the decorative paper and then all the way around it as well. I added the snowflake punchie, the stamped image and the metal snowflake over the bow!! I distressed the edge of the card with ink. The edges of the decorative paper and the image, as well as, the top of the strip were all distressed with my SU distress tool (fancy thread cutter as used in sewing).
So in the end, I have a skinny for the swap and 7 Christmas cards to add to my stash!!
Have you started on your Christmas cards? You will be a happy camper come November when they are all done!! Check the links I have on the right hand side of my blog that lists some of the Christmas card challenge blogs that I use as inspiration.
I am off to add inserts and envelopes to these before I add them to my box!!


Wednesday, April 06, 2011

Criss Cross card

Created this card - a criss cross card - for a swap on AFTCM!! I love the way it turned out!! I started with a 5.5" x 11" strip of cardstock which I scored at 4.25", 8.5" which left about 2.5" on the end which I folded to the front on the left hand side. As this card evolved I thought that I should have considered making it 4.25" x 11" so that the wonderful edge of my inside card would always be visible. Alas, I did not have the complete vision when I started! I used my new (last night - Thanks Diane!) Sizzix die - Ornate Frame to create the inside card - love the little corners and the bit of a scallop on this die!! I added a border punched layer, some die cut decorative paper and a stamped scallop circle (Nestibilities) with a little rhinestone!! The stamp is from Quietfire - love those flourishes!! They are having a Blog Hop today and tomorrow and are giving away rubber stamps and Spellbinder dies so follow the link, click on "Blog" on their home page and check it out!!
For the outside I layered on decorative paper and created a band for the lower section. For the band, I started with a strip of pink cardstock to which I glued two pieces of this beautiful pink fabric embellishment - one on each side. I used my new scallop ribbon border punch (SU) to create a short piece of paper ribbon with ivory cardstock. I cut a slot between the holes at every second spot and threaded through pink 1/4" ribbon - love the look. I think this punch has huge potential!! I wrapped my strip around the card, trimmed the ends to be even and glued them to each other. I glued the paper and ribbon layer over that which covered the joint. I created the metal accent by gluing an embossed metal button (cut off the shank with a hacksaw) to a filigree scallop using a large glue dot. I also used a large glue dot to adhere it to the band.
Voila, a Victorian inspired card to cheer someone!! I really enjoyed taking the time to make this a special card! It was great to use some of my new tools as well.


Tuesday, April 05, 2011

Grunge background!

I created this background in response to a grunge challenge on one of my groups!!!!!!!
I have never created a full fledged digital collage before though I have dabbled with graphics. I am very pleased with how it worked out!! It has been a time consuming task because I am not very familiar with all of my graphics programs and I needed to find all the elements I included. Most were scavenged from picture fonts because they automatically come with transparent backgrounds!! I did start with one of my glue resist backgrounds which I used when creating these cards.
So I challenge you to download this background, create some art with it, come back and leave me a comment so I can check it out!! It is so cool!!


Monday, April 04, 2011

Card Holder and template

Created this cool little holder that fits 4 cards!!
Needed a bit of a gift for a woman who has been gracious and so I made up this holder so I could present her with a few cards to express my appreciation!! The design is based on the Create-a-lope way of making envelopes. I bought the template many years ago and have created digital files based on the original concept several times for different projects.
I printed my file on the back of the cardstock, scored and folded the lines, trimmed the corners and added a few glue dots to keep the holder together. Added four cards and tied it closed with a length of ribbon (26"or so)!

Great way to package a set of cards for gift giving!!


Angel policy: You can download and make holders 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!!

Zentangle cards!!

More zentangle cards! In an effort to have cards on hand and keep cut up supplies from accumulating I made up these cards this past week. The supplies were extras from this class. I will add greetings to them when I am ready to use them!! I did have a morning of creating Zentangles to have enough to make up all the kits I had. I love to create these little interesting pieces of art - all originals!!