Monday, October 31, 2011

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Natural Christmas card

This doily stamp is my latest acquisition from Stampin UP. I love it!! In an effort to use what I buy I decided to combine the doily stamp with Sylvia's Christmas card challenge - Natural, By Hand's Challenge of using a circle die and CST's challenge of using stitching in the creation of this card!! I am super happy with the way it turned out!!
I stamped the doily on an ivory card front and embossed it with clear embossing powder. To add colour, I used my newly acquired Portfolio water soluble pastels by just scribbling with the pastels onto the embossed image and using a paintbrush to spread the colour. I need a little more practice as I was not able to mix quite the colour I was looking for so I added some sponging once the surface was dry and that was closer to the look I wanted. Just love the way the doily pops!! I laser printed a round greeting and a poinsettia image from Birds Cards for the middle accent. I cut them out with a round Nestibilities, sponged them lightly, added colour with the pastels and layered them onto a brown scallop circle (NS). Added some faux stitching to the circle accent and the card using a caramel coloured marker to continue my soft and subtle look. Mounted them to the card front with 3D foam tape and added a seam binding bow to finish off the card.
Thrifty Tip: I created the bow using two pieces - one straight across the card and another folded in thirds tied to the middle of the other one with cording. It gives a nice bow with a very flat center which keeps costs down when mailing your cards because they will fit through the slot!!
So another 3 cards added to the stash - total count for this year so far 84!!


Friday, October 21, 2011

Wax paper resist!

One of my blog visitors wondered if using wax paper over white cardstock in an embossing folder would transfer enough wax to the cardstock to be used as a wax resist. I gave it a try because all the tools were sitting right at hand. Unfortunately, not so! You can see to the left my experiment. The second from the left is the cardstock I put through the embossing folder and painted with watercolour. It has a nice relief but it did not resist the colour. I decided to transfer the wax to cardstock using heat. I placed my embossed wax paper over a piece of white cardstock and wrapped it in white paper and applied heat with my iron. The cardstock has a VERY faint image of the design once colour is added - it is the far left. The cover paper I used had a much better image and resisted the colour very nicely - it is second from the right. On the right is the wax paper!! It looks interesting enough to be used as a layer on a card!!
My visitor does not have an embossing machine so I tried using just crumpled wax paper and created the paper on the left - wrinkled wax paper (left) and the resist paper on the right. You can create all sorts of patterns in wax paper - fold, draw, etc - that can be used for wax resist.

Thanks for asking!!

The two following scans are of the tissue I used as a paintbrush for the application of colour in the above experiment and the two sheets of copy paper I used to dry them with the iron. I did not expect the colour to transfer.

So one little experiment!! 10 pieces of paper I can use in my paper crafting!!
Everyday is a good day to play!! I may use these later today when I am working on challenge cards!!


Thursday, October 20, 2011

Fragment Charms!!

More charms for a swap on AFTCM!! Our bracelets are going to be great!!
Fragment charms was the theme this month so I used these plexiglass shapes as my base. The little rectangular ones were clear - the larger ones were red!!
These were fun to create!!
From my collage box I chose little images and papers for each side of my charms. I used Dimensional Magic to glue the focal element to the back of the plastic shape so it would show through the front.
I glued the back paper/image to the back of the focal image so it would show at the back - a double sided charm. It was fun to cut out shapes and create small collages!!

You can see here the fronts of three charms on the left and the back of the same charms on the right.

I coated the sides and backs of the charms with Dimensional Magic to nicely seal in the images. How do you do that without holding them, you ask?? I attached the front of the charm to the top of a push pin using double sided tape. Planted the push pin into a strip of styrofoam which gave me something to hang on to while I was applying the finish. Worked like a charm!! You need to make sure the charm is level to prevent the finish from pooling but you don't get your fingers gummed up and they can stay there until they are completely dry!!
I drilled holes near the top edge for a jump ring and my charms were finished!! I have mine packaged and ready to go to my partner in the mail today!!


Cardmaking - October - Handmade paper

I made handmade paper several times this year so my box is overflowing!! Several batches were such nice bright colours - yellow, blue and pinks which I created using SU cardstock scraps donated to me by several local demonstrators. The paper is beautiful and I wanted it to be prominent in my cards so I decided to use a full sheet (8.5" x 5.5") as my card base. I most appreciate the deckle edge on handmade paper but the sheets were not all exactly the right size so I pondered the task of trimming all the errant edges by hand which is how I normally do it. That was going to take a while!! After a bit of experimenting I came upon the idea of using my distress tool on any edges of the paper that had to be trimmed with my cutter. Worked beautifully!! Nice straight edges with a soft deckle look in a fraction of the time!!
I layered three embossed cardstock die cuts - Tattered Flowers TH (SX) and attached them to my card front with a brad. Trimmed my colour printed greeting and glued it into place!!
Love the way they turned out and my favorite is the pink and green combination!!


Cardmaking - October - Serendipity

I love creating serendipity backgrounds for cardmaking!! It is a process that does not require too much attention and only a few supplies - paper scraps, glue and a substrate. A great activity when you are feeling less than inspired but still would like to do something creative. You can check out these other projects I have created using this technique here or click the Serendipity Label - lower right hand side of my blog.
I created a few full sized pages earlier this year and in September dug out several kits I had prepared for a class a couple of years ago and decided to just get them made up.
I silver or gold embossed my sheets before cutting them into squares and rectangles. Each card has 4 squares and 2 half squares. There are a variety of layouts you can use but I decided I would offset the half ones - one top right, other bottom left. Because each one is like a little piece of art I usually use minimal embellishments. This time, I added a small embossed butterfly punchie!! Click on the photo and check out the cool way I made a body, head and antenna for it!! I saw this on a blog recently - sorry not sure where!! Here's how you do it - fold your cording in half, place the butterfly's midsection inside the fold, tie two knots at the top of the midsection and trim the ends. Voila!! - a body, a head and antenna!! Not sure who invented this cool idea but it works so well!!! I attached my butterfly with 3D foam tape just below its body so the wings can be folded out.
I love the glitz and bling of these cards!! Would be great for Christmas cards in red, green and gold!!
I have a couple of links to tutorials on my April 2011 blog post here!! Have fun!!


Cardmaking - October - step card

Have been seeing step cards on blogs for a while and thought I would give it a go!! I watched a few videos, checked out a few tutorials and decided for my first attempt I would create only one step. You can check out this tutorial over at Splitcoast Stampers which gives step by step instructions for a center step card. They are some times also referred to as stair cards if you want to search for a few examples or tutorials.
Once I figured out my dimensions, I designed a layout with the cutting/folding lines and printed them on the back of the cardstock which made the process of creating the cards in class much less time consuming.
We made one cut and scored three fold lines. The last fold (bottom of the step) was created during the process of getting the card to fold flat. Worked out quite well!! To decorate the front panel I cut a small piece of decorative paper into three little rectangles, trimmed the tops into a slant, and positioned them making sure there was enough room for the flames above them. Glued them into place and trimmed any over hang at the bottom. Added wicks with a black sharpie marker and glued the flames into place with 3D foam tape. The flames are actually wing punchies from the SU bird punch!! Love versatile tools! I added some colour to my flames to give them a bit of dimension. I used watercolour on the top one and chalks on the bottom one - some used pencil crayons in class. Tie fiber to the card front overlapping the candles. With no place for a regular insert in this card I decided to add a flap with a greeting so there would be a place to write a message. I created this cool digital stamp!! I really liked the one put out by SU recently in their Delightful Dozen set so I decided to create my own. I used Corel Draw to lay out all the words in different fonts. Really happy with the way it turned out!! Can see a few more of these greetings in my future. Printed them in colour on white cardstock to coordinate with the card front, folded them and glued the back flap to the back of the step. The front flap can be tucked inside the step as well.
I really like the look of this dimensional card!!


Cardmaking - October - Rainbow Wishes

Love these rainbows!! I was inspired by this card from Splitcoast Stampers!! I dug through my cardstock scraps and started cutting little rectangles in seven different colours - red, orange, yellow, green, blue, purple and pink. Made a pile of each colour and then started matching them up - some more pastel, some more muted and others very strong and bold. I made a few specialty cards with what I had left over - all pinks or blues for baby cards and this green, orange and yellow combination for a Halloween card!! We did all sorts of embossing on our cards last night - some did just the elements others did the whole card front!!
I gave each person a scrap of white paper to glue their rainbow pieces to which allowed them to emboss the rainbow as an element before gluing it to the card. The greeting is laser printed onto white and then the pieces were trimmed apart (3/4" and 1.25") After embossing the elements were glued to a black card front. A bit of ribbon, a die cut, a stamped image or a few rhinestones would all be great 3D elements to add a bit more dimension to these cards!!
These are a quick and easy card once the rainbow pieces are cut. I have a lip on my trimmer which easily allows me to cut 3/4" strips so it was fairly quick to cut the scraps into strips. I really enjoyed matching up the colours but you could easily plan your colour combination in advance and only cut the pieces you need.
Consider red and green for Christmas cards!! A simple 3D element or some ribbon and you could make a bunch of cards in one day!! Are you inspired?? Make a few cards to add to your stash today!!


Friday, October 14, 2011

Fall Fairy!

A fall fairy!! I have a swap on Just Cards for a Thank you or Thanksgiving card so I decided to use some fall colours which worked in perfectly with the Fall challenge over at Class Act blog. The challenge at the By Hand blog is to use Pennants so I decided to add my greeting using little pennant triangles. I really like how that worked out!!
There have been all sorts of options explored in the creation of this card before this one finally emerged. I created the background using my new Fancy Fan letterpress plate (SU) inked with yellow and green craft inks in a random pattern. I created a new sandwich to allow me to use my silicone mat when I put it through my Big Kick so it would emboss the design as well as print it!! Loving the look!! I trimmed this layer and added to the top of a card front in the same red colour. Added a strip of green cardstock to which I glued my little pennants. I watercoloured my alphabet punchies and added them to the pennants using 3D foam tape. I watercoloured my image (Class Act - fairy), trimmed it close and layered it to a yellow rectangle which had been distressed a bit with ink using my stipple stamp then attached it with a couple copper brads.
I am really loving the bright warm colours of this card!!


Christmas cards!!

Pink Christmas cards!! Have been wanting to make some pink ones for quite a while, so with a card swap on Just Cards themed The Letter P I decided that pink and peace would work for the month of October and made it happen. It also works for Sylvia's Christmas card challenge for September which was Non Traditional colours so I am on a roll!! Come to think of it, the challenge on CST is monochromatic and this card will work for that as well!! Wow - lots of bang for the effort. I created 7 of these - one will be sent off for the swap and the others are headed to my Christmas card stash!!
If you haven't started your Christmas cards yet, check out Sylvia's blog for her challenge - she has had a monthly challenge since January - and get started with any of the challenges that catches your eye. A few cards per week until December 1 and you will be happy!! There are other challenges available. Just do a search or check out the ones I have listed on my right hand sidebar!!
As you can see there are two versions of this card - the simple and elegant one which I started with and as I proceeded card #4 received some bling and so did a few others!! I am of two minds about whether they all should have bling or not!! It is so like me to not be able to make more than a few cards exactly the same!! I will have to sleep on it!!
I cut the ornament (SX) from shimmery pink Core di nations cardstock! I cut the wave from shimmery white cardstock (Bazzill) using a Quikutz Cookie Cutter die I recently acquired!! I also cut the hanger from the same shimmery cardstock layering them onto the main ornament with a bit of white glue and trimming the wave to the edge. I stamped Peace (Chapel Road - Class Act) onto the lower bottom corner of a piece of white cardstock in pink and embossed the whole thing with Musical Flourish (CB) embossing folder. I mounted the ornament to the embossed layer using 3D foam tape incorporating a pearly string beneath the hanger, used double sided tape to hold the free end to the back of the card and added a length of shimmery pink and white ribbon about a half inch from the top by gluing both ends to the back with double sided tape. I glued this layer to pink, trimmed it close and mounted it to a white card front. I decided to add a short piece of string to the pink ribbon. Simply tied it around the ribbon with a double knot and situated it to overlap the ornament's string. I like the look!! The last few got some bling!!
Still have one more card swap to finish and a few other projects on the go!!

Class Act has a new challenge on their blog! You could win some rubber!! Go and check them out!!


Monday, October 10, 2011

Spooktacular card!!

Another card which is not typical of the cards I usually create!! This one is for the Technique swap - TORN - on Just Cards combined with the challenge on the Created By Hand blog which is OVAL. I was perusing this on line e zine called Crafting Ireland and on page 77 found a card tutorial for a mummy which used an oval and torn fabric!! Just what I needed as inspiration for this card!!
I cut a black oval (NS) and wrapped it with torn strips of white tissue paper. Initially, the strips were about an inch wide but in the end I trimmed them down to about a half inch to be more in scale with my oval. I applied glue to the ends of the strips and started wrapping them around the oval leaving spaces for eyes and a mouth. It looked too ghoulish with just blank spaces for eyes so I decided to use my punches to make some. I started with one large black oval (SU) and glued on a small yellow one. I cut that in half and added the two ends of a large oval with the middle perpendicularly punched out of it using the large oval punch. Unfortunately, I had to use two ovals because one of the ends fell inside my punch!! Who knew there was even an opening there!! So, I now have two pieces of cardstock inside my punch. Yes, two!! I did it again!! I will have the punch doctor (DH) take a look at it and see about extricating the pieces before they get lodged somewhere that interferes with the workings of the punch!! I added the details using a black fine tip Sharpie marker. I eased them under the tissue paper a bit which made them look more real. I mounted this to a purple card front on which I had dawn a haunted house, a cemetery and some bats and added a round punchie in yellow for the moon! I coloured in the details with glitter gel pens - I am loving those!!
Lastly, I added the laser printed spooktacular greeting with mini black brads and the two letter punchies using 3d foam tape!!

Very happy with how this "one of a kind card" turned out!! It was fun to do some hand drawing right on the card and embellish it with the gel pens!!


Wednesday, October 05, 2011

Handmade paper swatches!

Handmade paper swatches - all ready to go!! I signed up for a swap where paper makers from everywhere will be sending in little swatches of their handmade papers and one blessed soul will be creating a book for each of us - 56 of us!! There will be page for each sample along with the recipe!! They had scans of previous swatch books and they looked so cool and what a resource!! So I managed to get my papers made, my swatches ready along with all the other required elements like payment and a return address label, put all the elements into a large bubble envelope and sent it on its way yesterday!! Not sure how long it will take to get a book back but I am hoping that maybe by Christmas though it may be the new year if any of the swatches are delayed for any reason! Regardless, I am sure the book will be a feast for the eyes when it finally arrives!!


Trick or treat card!

Have joined a new card group, Just Cards and the swap info came out this week. I joined four swaps so I thought I would get started!!
I created this card for the Colour Theme Swap - Orange and Black. As my DH just commented - this is not my typical card!! I downloaded the digital stamp from Robin's Art Musings - here!! She has several there including a cat, a spider and a bat!! I laser printed it and cut it out with a round Nestibilities die, coloured it with my "new to Me" Portfolio water soluble oil pastels and mounted it to a black and then an orange scallop circle (NS). I added some stenciling to the top right of the card using some punchanella (thanks, Dale) and the Portfolio pastels. I simply placed the punchanella on the card front, rubbed an orangy red pastel over the surface and took a damp paint brush and washed over the area which nicely coloured the cardstock through the holes! I can see a lot of potential for these pastels!! I washed some colour over my harlequin decorative paper as well to help it coordinate better with the orange scallop. I embossed my black torn strip with a large dot embossing folder and added stitching with a white gel pen. Added stitches to the card and on the diamonds of my decorative paper with a black gel pen. Once the decorative paper and the black strip were glued down I added the plaid ribbon which was the subtle addition of colour that this card really needed. I went "stash diving" to find this cool glittery green wired fuzzy stuff - it was on someone's discard pile at Christmas so I took it home. Perfect to add a bit of glitz to this card!! Final touch was to add some dots on the orange scallop with a glittery black gel pen!!
Really happy with how this card worked out!! I will be submitting it for our weekly challenge on CST which this week is Stitching!!
If you are a Canadian paper crafter consider joining CST - Canadian Stamp Talk. It is a great group moderated by group owner, Nancy from Calgary.

So fun to create without limits!!