Saturday, December 17, 2011

Masculine Cards

I am always in need of masculine cards at this time of year and usually there are none to be found in my card box.  So it was yesterday when I went looking.  I decided to make a few to rectify that situation!!
I used a few preprinted images from my cardmaking supply box and while I was there I picked a few pieces that I thought would be appropriate as backgrounds and some greetings as well.  It was fun to make up some cards with different designs and supplies and only have to make one of each!!  I watercoloured my images, distressed their edges and found paper and cardstock to go with them.  The boots are a digital image from Beccy's.   She has several different images that are really appropriate for masculine cards.  The backgrounds are ones I have created - green one is acrylic paint, the corrugated is walnut ink and the bottom one is watercolour with plastic wrap.  Two of the greetings are printed on transparency and the other is an oval punchie.  Added a  few brads and I had three cards ready to go!!
We are down to the short strokes for being ready for Christmas!  That feels good!!


Baby cards!

I have been busy for the last few days making receiving blankets and burp  cloths for my daughter on occasion of the arrival of our newest grandson. My niece also had a baby at the beginning of December so I decided to make a few cards for each of them using the scraps of flannelette I had leftover.
For the top one, I sewed a piece of yellow handmade paper onto dark brown cardstock with a strip of polka dot fabric placed in between which I then tied with brown embroidery floss to simulate a bow. The little patchwork horse is a digital image from Beccy's.   I coloured it in appropriate colours, trimmed it with scallop decorative scissors and pierced each scallop using a push pin on an old mouse pad.  Used 3D foam tape to adhere it to the card front overlapping the fabric strip.
For the lower one, I sewed a piece of fabric overlaid with some brown rick rack to dark brown cardstock.  I tucked the ends of the rick rack inside the card and secured them with double sided tape.  Coloured and embellished my image and secured it to the card front with 3D foam tape.
The cards will make perfect Thank you cards!!


Retirement Card

My DH has retired!!  I made him a card to celebrate this momentous occasion!  I included on it images or words to represent all the activities he plans to participate in as he finds himself with more time on his hands.  I downloaded most of them off the internet, sized them and laser printed them onto kraft cardstock.  Trimmed them to size,  sponged all the edges, laid them on the stamped card front and then glued them into place.  Used 3D foam tape for some of them just to make them pop a little more!!


Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Winter greetings card

Created a card for winter greetings for a couple who do not celebrate Christmas. A new year is always a time for reflection and in Canada also a time when we can most appreciate the winter season so I created a soft white on white card for them.
Embossed a panel with the Swirl oval embossing folder (SX), die cut an oval (NS) and embossed it with Swiss Dot (CB), added snowbanks trimmed at the bottom with the oval nestie, a 1" moon punchie from pearly paper and a little pine tree (M) all layered on a white card. Finished it off with a white and gold ribbon simply tied with gold cording.


Friday, December 09, 2011

Christmas - embossed with bling

Created another set of kits the other day using several of the designs from my last class and this one!! This is a quick and easy Christmas card. Stamp the greeting, emboss the layer (SU), add a ribbon and attach to your card front. I added some rhinestones to the center of the snowflakes as well which is a great finishing touch for these elegant cards!!

Not sure I will be posting again before the holidays so I thought I would add my wishes for all of you here.

I wish you all a blessed Christmas season and every blessing in 2012!!
Enjoy your family and friends!
Celebrate the joy and fun of the season!
Make some memories!!
Treasure the blessings you receive!!

Thanks for being here and letting me share my creative experience with you!!


Cardmaking - Dec - #8 envelope

I have seen quite a few cards online lately with elements sticking out of the sides of the card and so challenged myself to see if I could figure how to make that happen!! I know it is not that difficult to make it stick out but getting it to fit in the envelope is what I was concerned about. In the end, I decided to use a 5.5"x8.5" piece of cardstock folded into three sections, added a tab punchie to create a bit of interest and that fit perfectly in the #8 envelopes I have on hand!! So fun when a plan comes together!
From a variety of hand decorated paper/cardstocks I cut 2" panels, punched some shapes out of them, glued them to my card bases and then scored a line to give them an even border. Next, I folded the other end up to make a 3.5" card which was perfect for my envelope. I embossed the bottom flap and added the tab punchie to the top flap. Added a single layer insert to the middle section for writing a message.
Here you can see how easily this design can also be used to create Christmas cards!! I punched out snowflakes, backed the openings with packing tape, added a small rhinestone in the center then rubbed on glitter!! Used the snowflake embossing folder on the bottom flap and added an appropriate greeting on the inside!!

Very quick and easy!!


Cardmaking - Dec - flocked ribbon

I have been collecting flocked ribbon for a while thinking it would be a great way to add texture to a card so I dug out the rolls and worked out a design!! I started with a quarter sheet of designer paper that coordinated with the ribbon which I border punched and added a coordinating cardstock strip which I embossed. I cut "V"shapes on all of their bottom edges. Love the look!! Added a colour printed greeting with brads!! Done!!

It always helps to make quick work of a card when the supplies are few and quick to assemble!!


Cardmaking - Dec - fabric ribbon

I have been wanting to challenge myself to use fabric on some of my cards for a while now and decided I would give it a try for this month's Thank you cards. I created "ribbon" by cutting a strip of lame fabric and hemming both sides!! I love how reflective the lame fabric is while still being very soft and light. I did use some of my wider ribbons for these cards too. When I assembled my sample card, I gathered the ribbon and then placed the layered greeting with 3D foam tape on the back of it over the gathering to capture it. Sometimes, easier said that done!! One girl at class simply placed her greeting oval where she wanted it and then slipped the ribbon in behind!! Way easier!!!! One of the reasons I so love teaching - I learn from my students!! After that, it is a simply a matter of tucking the ends of the ribbon between the decorative cardstock layer and the card front using double sided tape!! I love the simple elegance of these cards!!
This design could easily be created as Christmas cards using a wide Christmas ribbon, some coordinating decorative paper and cardstock!! I laser printed my greeting but it could just as easily have been stamped and punched!! Those supplies will be going on sale with deep discounts in the next few weeks so consider planning ahead and getting your 2012 Christmas cards started in the new year before the Christmas feeling wears off!!


Cardmaking - Dec - Cardinal

December has arrived and most of us are counting down to Christmas hoping the to do list will be conquered in the time we have to get it done! I designed cards for this month's class that are
appropriate for expressing your appreciation for the blessings received over the Christmas season. It is more likely they will be sent if they are ready to go before the season truly gets busy!!
I saw this card on Splitcoast Stampers with its cute little cardinal and after a bit of examination, figured it was created using several punches so dug out my selection to see if I could replicate the little bird. *See below for details in creating the cardinal. I am very happy with the way it turned out!! I sponged all the pieces with black ink and then assemble it. After embossing the label (TH-SX) I added the little green sprigs (MS) punchies and sat the bird just above them. I used the slot punch (SU) to create the openings for my ribbon and glued their ends to the inside of the card. The background paper is one that I created a few years ago using acrylic paint washes and a background stamp I created by gluing fun foam snowflakes to a piece of acrylic. Once I had washed the paper with colour I simply placed the stamp on the wet surface and it moved the colour around which gave a very beautiful subtle texture to the paper which was perfect for this card. I brought along some stamps to let everyone customize their cards to their needs.

It is getting busy! I have parcels to send out, a Christmas letter to print and cards to mail!! Most of the shopping has been done - thanks to DH!!
If your list is looking too long for the time left I suggest you start deleting and/or delegating!! Get creative - no one will ever know that you had intended to make pies and goodies instead of buying them from the local bakery, (baker, friend, farmers market or bake sale)!!


*A Cardinal tutorial I found on line which is pretty close to what I did. I used a 1 3/4" punch (SU) for the body, 1" punch (SU) for the wing and a scallop punch (SU) for the tail. I used the 1 3/4" punch to create the "face" and just hand cut the beak.

Face: The photo on the left shows the creation of the beak section using the 1 3/4" punch. I first cut a 3/4" strip of black cardstock and removed a concave section from the end by placing the end into the punch and lining up both corners with the cutting edge of the punch and taking out a small slice. The next step is shown here: place the concave end into the punch until you have one edge lined up with the cutting edge and the other edge of the cardstock is about 1/4" away from the cutting edge. The little piece makes a perfect "face" for your cardinal.
Body: Use the 1 3/4" punch and fill the punch opening to about 3/4 full just off the edge of the paper. OR Punch a full circle and trim off about a 1/4 of it.
Wing: Punch about a half of the 1" circle OR Punch a full 1" circle and cut it in half to create two wings.
Tail: Punch a full scallop punchie and cut from the bottom of one scallop to center of punchie. Count two scallops and cut from the bottom of that scallop to the center. One scallop punch will make several tails. NOTE: you could substitute a heart punchie for the tail.
Beak: 3/4" x 1/4" scrap of yellow cut to a blunt point on one end
Eye: mini white brad.

Saturday, December 03, 2011

Green Gift Tags!!

They don't look obviously green do they?? They are green as in good for the Earth - rather than green in colour - because I created them to be reused!!!
I used quilting fabric with a variety of images on it, applied Heat and Bond to the back and cut them out to create the central elements for the tags. I used a heavy cotton fabric for the base of the tags and added a
backing of light fabric at the back of the top section that will show above the pocket. I added stitching on the top section to attach the fabrics to each other which also provided some texture. I had planned to do some free motion stitching but my first attempt with a new foot broke the needle so I will be going to the shop and getting a demonstration on how to use it before I try again. I have never used this kind of free motion foot before so it is possible that I had it installed incorrectly or am unaware of the finer points of its use.
I hemmed the top of the pocket, folded it up, pressed the fold and ironed on my central element leaving even margins. With everything in place I used a zig zag stitch all the way around which finished the edges and created the pocket at the same time. After trimming off the hairy bits I used cotton cording in a large eyed needle to create ties. Here is the reusable part - I created cardstock tags that fit in the pocket and can be replaced every year!!! So you can have beautiful tags on your gifts every year!! By adding a hanger instead of ties, these could easily be used as ornaments on your tree. With a bit of planning, they could also be used as gift card holders!! It is a bit of an investment of time but they will last for years!!
Do you consider green options when wrapping your gifts? Reusable fabric bags instead of paper ones? Gift certificates or coupons for services that can be packaged in reusable packaging like little metal boxes or handmade paper or fabric holders?
To keep your holiday dollars in your community consider buying local - gift certificates for hair cuts, lawn care, snow removal, craft or exercises classes, meals at locally owned restaurants, etc. Give locally made jams/baking or "meals" (the ingredients to a favorite dish) in a basket. These also require less "shopping" which will leave some time to enjoy hot chocolate and a movie with your family, visit shut ins or volunteer to help a neighbor with their tree decorating!!

I am happy to have my tags ready to go!! We will be having our exchange later this week!!