Thursday, September 21, 2017

Thinking of Autumn

I can't believe tomorrow is the first day of Fall! How did that happen? I'm still reminiscing of beach days and sunshine. I thought I'd put myself in an Autumn mood and create a few cards that I need to send out this month. I'm slowly working my way through my birthday stamps and I chose to use the floral image from Happily Ever After and the sentiment from Fancy Floral

I chose to heat emboss the floral image onto some watercolor paper using gold powder. I have been using SU!'s "Gold Glory" embossing powder that I have had forever, but it is almost gone. Anyone out there have one that they love more than another? I am totally up for some suggestions! 
Once they were embossed, I used some "Bravo Burgundy" reinker to watercolor the floral images and some "Always Artichoke" reinker for the leaves. I thought it seemed like early Autumn. On this particular card, I used some Nuvo Glaze on a few petals and leaves. I really like how it turned out. I wasn't as happy with the embossing on this particular card, so I decided to use it as my guinea pig for experimentation! LOL!

This ended up being my favorite of the two. The sentiment is heat embossed onto a strip of Kraft cardstock using gold powder as well. I cut it at an angle and then added it to the floral piece using foam squares.
Rather than adding glaze to this particular card, I chose to use some Wink of Stella on the flowers and leaves for some sparkle and shine. I also added some Bright Gold Nuvo Drops here and there around the floral arrangement.

I took a risk and added a few Sparkling Clear sequins in addition to the nuvo drops, but I really like the sparkle that it adds to the design.

You can see the crystal glaze on the leaf in this photo. I just love how it looks on top of the embossing. The finishing touch is a few splatters of "Close to Cocoa" ink using a Color Spritzing tool. I just felt that the white space needed a little warmth. Thanks for fluttering by and Happy Autumn!

Monday, September 18, 2017

Merry Monday #257 {Love from our House to Yours}

It's Monday and that means it is time for a new Merry Monday Challenge! I am so excited to be getting a head start on all of my holiday cards! 
This week, Sue has challenged us to add a decorated tag to our cards using texture, bling, and die cuts! Sounds fun, right? It is! You can find out about all of the details HERE and see how the rest of the team incorporated tags into their designs!
To begin, I die cut a postage looking piece using the "Post and Parcel" kit from Papertrey Ink. It has been discontinued, but it is one of my favorites! I sponged some Peacock Feathers distress ink onto the die cut and then layered it with different die cut pieces from the kit. I just love the vintage vibe, especially the bird pulling the bow!

After all of my bits and pieces were attached, I tied some red ribbon onto the tag and then a bow of True Black Baker's Twine and a red jingle bell. I usually buy a few packs of all of the jingle bells at the Dollar Tree as soon as they come out. I am sure it will happen any minute now! LOL!

The tag is attached to a piece of red card stock using foam squares and then adhered to the dry embossed piece. 

The finishing touch is a few drops of "Duck Egg Blue" Nuvo drops here and there for some added detail. I also added some Nuvo glaze to the ornaments in the arrangement on the mailbox. Thanks for fluttering by!

Saturday, September 16, 2017

Hello, Birthday Girl!

 I'm just popping in with a sweet and simple card I whipped up last minute for my daughter to take to a birthday party tonight! Once again, I thought I'd better post something before Monday rolls around and I share a new Christmas design! LOL! I'm completely missing my lazy summer days that meant as much creative time as I liked! I guess all good things must come to an end! 
 I picked up this super cute gift sack that you can see in the background that inspired the simplicity of the design. My first instinct was to use Pedal Pusher but I ALWAYS use that so I decided to simplify and use one of my more underutilized stamp sets;Everyday Button Bits. There's not much to color and the buttons do all the work since they look so darn cute! 

I did minimal coloring with just a touch of Wink of Stella on the bike and then just a tiny amount of Nuvo Crystal glaze on  the seat for a fun, retro vibe. My brother had this bike with a blue banana seat that was made of blue glittery plastic that I LOVED! I wanted to recreate that look on my card!

Last, but not least, I used the Hello, You stamp set from CZ design that I got for my the beginning of AUGUST and this was the first time I used it! I still have a STACK of stamps from my birthday that remain unopened and uninked! Hangs head in shame! I've decided that I'm going to bag the housecleaning and just focus on stamping and see how that works out! LOL! Thanks for fluttering by!

Monday, September 11, 2017

Merry Monday #256 {Season's Greetings}

Welcome back for this week's installment of the Merry Monday Christmas Card challenge and boy is it a good one! I seriously had so many ideas running through my mind, but decided that execution would probably be the hardest part in this particular challenge. 

You can read all about the challenge HERE as well as soak in ALL of the inspiration from the other designers! They have some very fun and festive cards that really will get your creative juices flowing. For my card, I decided to make something (and I couldn't resist making some coordinating tags) inspired by the Holiday classic "Home Alone" and also inspired by another classic "Holiday Inn"...two VERY different movies, but I love how this door image works so well for either one!

 To begin, I used the Door to Door Die on a rectangle of Pure Poppy cardstock and then used the coordinating Door to Door stamp set to stamp the door image. Once that was done, I used my bone folder to crease the door open. I spritzed it quite heavily with Shimmer Spray for some nice shine. I adhered the entire red piece onto a slightly larger rectangle of white cardstock so that I could stamp a greeting or image inside the door. I was truly wishing that I had an outline image of Kevin McAllister to add to the inside, but alas, I don't! LOL! Right now it is still blank and I will probably remedy that once I have a recipient in mind for this particular card.
 The stair case is stamped using Palette Black ink onto a 5 1/4 inch by 4 inch piece of Kraft Cardstock and then the sentiment is heat embossed in gold using images from the Two Feet Deep stamp set. I used my MISTI for exact placement and nice saturation of the Versamark ink before I embossed it. I just love how it turned out. I always like it when people paint clever things on their staircases or add a detail of some kind. I also felt like stairs in Home Alone make quite a scene! LOL!
 Once that was done, I  stamped a few snowflakes from the Two Feet Deep stamp set as well and added some Bright Gold Nuvo Drops in the centers for some added detail. The rest of the details are die cut using the Door To Door Accessories Dies for some added interest and Christmas charm. My daughter joked that she wished that there was a little "Jockey" lawn ornament that the Little Nero's pizza delivery boy knocks over. It's actually a fun little detail that John Hughes likes to add in his movies. However, I don't have one to add! LOL!
 Well, because I had so much fun with the card, I just couldn't stop, which happens to be a habit of mine while creating holiday designs. I thought the little open door would make FABULOUS tags.

 As you can see, I made a whole army of them and I can't wait to add them to my holiday gifts.

In this case, the open door was the PERFECT spot to add the "To: from:" sentiment. They are all tied up with black twine...I went and bought the rest that Hallmark had on clearance! Yay me! I had A LOT of fun creating this card and matching tags! I really hope you get a chance to play along! Thanks for fluttering by!

Sunday, September 10, 2017

{Celebrate} your big day!

 I thought I'd better post something besides a Christmas project before tomorrow so I don't have three Holiday posts in a row! LOL! My daughter was invited to a surprise sweet 16 party for one of her friends so of course I needed to make a card! I wanted something fun, bright and sparkly! I was in such a rush to make the card because I had to get to my son's football game which meant I didn't get a chance to photograph the card before my daughter left. So...what's a girl to do? Well, make a whole new identical card, of course! LOL!

 I just worked in reverse and put everything away as I was done so I was cleaning and creating at the same time! It worked out fabulously! To begin, I blended some Picked Raspberry Distress ink onto a 4 by 5 1/4 inch piece of Bristol paper for a smooth blend. After that was done, I sprinkled some chunky iridescent glitter onto the panel and then spritzed it with some hairspray and Shimmer Spray for optimum sparkle. I had spritzed water onto my original card as well, but I didn't feel it added anything extra so I didn't add it to this card.  After that was done, I set it aside to dry.
 I die cut the word "Celebrate" out of some "Gilver" glitter cardstock using the Birthday Cheer die set. On the original card, I layered it three times but I just couldn't bring myself to do it again on this card! lol! I actually think it looks just fine like this anyway. You can see how it would look stacked on THESE cards using the same paper and similar die cuts. The "Your big day" sentiment is heat embossed in gold onto purple cardstock using the Birthday Cheer stamp set.
 I'm just slightly obsessed with balloons lately so I was super excited to get to work creating the balloon details. To begin, I gold embossed the "strings" using the Birthday Style stamp set. I also embossed the cute little bow that's hanging at the bottom. A few iridescent sequins add a little bit more sparkle as well as frame the two sentiments. 
 The balloons are die cut using the Birthday Style die cuts and then stamped in bright colors. I actually used the gift sack that the gift went in as the inspiration for the order of the balloons on the card as well as the colors. The balloons all got a nice coating of Nuvo Crystal Glaze over the top. On my original card, I decided to add the chunky glitter over the top of the wet glaze and of course, a little bit sprinkled onto the card front. I liked the effect so well, that I decided to just sprinkle it on in the beginning as I mentioned earlier in my post. I added the purple sentiment strip to the bottom of the card and then layered the "Celebrate" diecut over the top. 
You can see how fun the glitter looks on the glossy balloons. I wanted to recreate the look of the balloons that are filled with confetti or glitter. I think they turned out great! I sprinkled more at the bottom and then gradually worked my way up using less and less. Such a fun and festive card!! Thanks for fluttering by! Join me tomorrow for a new Merry Monday Challenge!

Monday, September 4, 2017

Merry Monday #255 {Joy to the World}

 Hello and welcome to a NEW Merry Monday challenge!! I am so excited to have been asked to be a part of this amazing Design Team! I was feeling really sad when "The Challenge" ended and I am so glad for this opportunity and you ALL know how much I LOVE Christmas!! I really hope you get a chance to play along! Nothing says "Happy Labor Day" like sharing a Holiday Design! LOL!
You can read all about it HERE! I just love this inspiration photo and as much as I wanted to take an absolute literal approach, I resisted so I could challenge myself as well as try some new ideas! As soon as I knew what the challenge would include, I  searched online stores for a  "JOY" stamp set because I wanted something new. There are a TON of fabulous sets out there, but I ultimately decided on Concord and 9th's JOY stamp set and coordinating die. I really like the style as well as the many possibilities that it holds. 

 During the design process, I also decided to use Fair Isle Motifs to enhance the word JOY and the Spruce and Sprigs stamp set as well as the coordinating DIES. It's a potpourri of products, but I love how they all work together!

To begin, I die cut 5 of the JOY words from Kraft cardstock so that I could stack them up for a nice focal point. 
 Once they were all cut, I placed one of the words BACK into the negative space in my MISTI. I placed the fair isle image that I wanted directly onto the center of the "O" so I would have proper placement. Now, you might be wondering why I didn't just stamp it first and then die cut it? Well, I knew that I was going to be doing some heat embossing and I didn't want to run the embossed piece through my Cuttlebug. I didn't want to run the risk of smashing the raised detail or tarnishing the shine. So...I stamped it like this and then sprinkled gold embossing powder over each piece and used tweezers to heat them so I didn't burn my fingers or smudge the intricate design.
Once that was done, I was able to glue all 5 of each letter on top of each other using Tombow Mono Multi for a strong bond. While those were drying, I created a die cut circle piece as a base for the die cut JOY. I stamped the same image as I did for the letters and heat embossed it using gold as well. Once that was done, it was very easy to line up the letters over the top for perfect alignment. Even though the letters are so thick, I also popped them up using foam squares for even more dimension. I just love how they look floating above the circle. The inspiration piece used a snowflake in the center, but I thought this fair isle pattern was a perfect alternative!
 I like the wood of the sign on the inspiration piece as well, so I thought a wood background would be nice as well. I used the Wood Grain Impression Plate on a piece of green paper for some nice texture. I cut it into two pieces and adhered it to a base of white flecked paper. It is super old from SU! and I can't remember what it is called...rustic something or other, maybe? It is my last piece and I am sad. I also used this same paper for the circle detail. The "to the world" sentiment is gold embossed onto a strip of the same green paper and then glued over the top of "JOY".
 The gold embossed lined strip uses another image from the "JOY" stamp set and I adhered that to the card in between the two green pieces, but I popped it up. I can see lots of possibilities with those lines. I almost left the card just as it was, without the sprigs of greenery. It felt done with the design in a CAS way, but felt it needed something else.
I added a few sprigs of greenery as well for a festive touch. Each of the pieces were spritzed with just a hint of shimmer spray and then some Wink of Stella on the holly leaves. The trio of berries got a nice coating of Nuvo Crystal Glaze for some added shine. I arranged them in a little cluster and then added them to the card front using foam squares. Of course, I just HAD to add some Bright Gold Nuvo Drops for some fun detail! I had so much fun with this challenge and I hope you will all find some time to play and get a head start on your holiday cards! Thanks for fluttering by!

Tuesday, August 29, 2017

Keeping Christmas {Die cut tags-4 ways}

"I will honor Christmas in my heart...and try to keep it all the year long!" ~Charles Dickens

And now back to our regularly scheduled program...LOL! I had so much fun being a guest for the Verve release this last week! I'm sorry if there were some of you looking for my Keeping Christmas post back on the 25th. I didn't want to bombard you all with any more posts than I already was posting.

 Not gonna lie...this month was rough for me as far as getting my project done. I just kept stressing about it and in the end I had to remind myself that I started this to #1 Have fun #2 Make things that I wanted and needed for this coming Christmas #3 Have fun! LOL! There are quite a few ideas I have that I am planning on executing, but unfortunately they are things that will have to wait until October or November.

Well, to be honest...I don't think I need any more tags but I FINALLY got the Tremendous Treats Die Set. I have had the Stamp Set for YEARS and ended up by not using a lot of the images because I felt they were a little small and I couldn't give them much presence, but with the die cuts it makes it a lot easier to make them a little more special. I die cut each of the images twice, stamped them using Palette Noir ink and then colored them using Copic Markers. I colored them assembly line style by coloring each color on each image as I went, all the red on all the images, all the black, and so on. I like doing it that way so I don't end up with a pile of markers rolling around on my desk.

Once they were all colored, I added some Nuvo Glaze to bits and pieces of each image as well as a generous amount of Wink of Stella. I set them aside to dry while I got to work on the tag bases for each image. I thought it would be fun to use the Fancy Flakes die as the base for some of the smaller images. I really like how they turned out and I like how easy it was to add the twine to one of the open spaces on the snowflake pattern.

After I was done die cutting the snowflakes, I thought it would be cute to emboss the snowflake onto a circle die cut. I like how it has a cohesive feel,but a little more subtle than the tags using the snowflake die cut as the base. To execute this, I used my brown embossing pad in my Cuttlebug that makes it possible to dry emboss with a die cut.

Then...I thought it would be nice to try the die cut snowflake added to the die cut circle to step it up a notch. I really like all of the different ways that I tried for these tags and depending on the time you have, you can tailor it to your needs. The die cut snowflake was by far the quickest, obviously and then they work their way up from there. Each tag base is spritzed with Shimmer spray for some extra shine!

I've used the coordinating sentiments that come with the stamp set forever and for today's tags I thought I would change it up and use the Cozy Critters sentiment set. I really like how nicely they pair up with the different images. They are all stamped in white...some directly on the tag and others on a sentiment strip.

Each tag is tied up with some black baker' twine. I got a HUGE roll half off at Hallmark in July and I have used pretty much the ENTIRE roll. I'm thinking of heading back to see if they have another roll because it ended up being $2.50 for a 25 yard roll. 

My daughter auditioned for Ballet West's production of The Nutcracker and she made it! I am so excited for her! That is part of the craziness of August as well as my 7 year old playing his first year of football and my oldest playing his Senior year of football! Things have been crazy around here to say the least, but it's all fun stuff! Thanks for fluttering by!

Monday, August 28, 2017

Verve's 10th Anni-verve-sary Day 5- a few of my favorites

Welcome back to Day 5 of our Anni-VERVE-sary Spotlight Hops!  It's an exciting day as there's new Verve in the store this morning! 4 beautiful new sets and 2 coordinating die sets just released and they're all available to order right now. To celebrate this special 10th Anni-VERVE-sary release, we're putting on another blog hop, with a pretty cool prize!
Today's featured focus is designer's choice, so you might just sneak a peek at a whole bunch of must-haves, especially since we've got a full line-up of Divas, guests and Alumni today!
Want to win some shiny new Verve? Today's prize is a BIG one. We'll be picking a random commenter on one of the hop spots below to win our ENTIRE new release! So be sure to leave a little comment on all the blogs below to increase your chances! Check out the Verve Blog today for the full hop list and all the prize info and deadlines!
Little OnesLittle Ones Die Set
Bloom BrighterBlooming Die Set
Cake and CandlesScripture Medley 5

Day 5 Hop List
1. Julee9. Lesley
2. Maureen10. Christyne
3. Betty11. Laurie
4. Charmaine12. Kelly (Guest)
5. Marisa13. Laurie W(Alumni)
6. Amy S.(Alumni)14. Tosha L. (Alumni)
7. Amy K.(Alumni)15. Tiffany S.(Alumni)
8. Michelle W. (Alumni)
I'm back today for the final day of the new Verve release. It has been so much fun! I appreciate ALL of your SWEET comments over the last few days! You know how to make a girl's day! Don't forget that you can head over to the Verve site today to purchase these amazing sets. The link to the store is included above! I'm sharing two cards today to finish off the release. This first design is a combination of the "Cakes and Candles" set and the fabulous "Bloom Brighter" set. I seriously love these flowers. They are so easy to use and the coordinating die cuts make them a breeze to create easy embellishments.

For this design, I heat embossed three of the large blooms using white powder onto Bristol paper since I did ink blending. After I heat set them, I blended some distress ink using Peacock Feathers, Raspberry Preserves and the straw color ( I can't remember the name). I just love how the emboss resist looks with these flowers. 
For the base, I blended some more ink onto a piece of Bristol paper. I stamped the black sentiment from the "Cake and Candles" set at the bottom using my MISTI for perfect placement and a saturated image.

The "enjoy today" sentiment strip was heat embossed onto black paper using white powder. I was only planning on using one of the sentiments horizontally, but as I was aiming for the "perfect" embossed piece, I realized how cool it would be to use multiple images across the entire strip. I just love how it turned out. Creating a sentiment strip like this makes it easy to incorporate a smaller image while still using a bold sentiment as well, like I did at the bottom.
I saved this card for the end because it is hands down, one of my favorite sentiment images from Verve. I used it years ago on THIS card that I made for my daughter. I re-read that whole post and I was just laughing! Such fond memories...
To begin, I sponged some Antique Linen distress oxide ink onto some Bristol paper. Once that was done, I heat embossed the sentiment with white powder onto a circle of Bristol paper and then used Peacock Feathers distress ink to blend over the top. 

I adhered the stenciled background onto a Kraft A2 card base and added a strip of bitty dot patter paper on the side. The black twine is threaded through a punched hole on the fold of the card and then tied in a bow. The circle sentiment piece is added to the card front using foam squares.
I love that the coordinating die set includes the heart. I die cut it 5 times out of white cardstock and then stamped one of them with Candied Apple distress oxide ink. I stacked them using Tombow Mono and added some Nuvo glaze over the top for some shine. A few sequins finish this simple design off. Once again, I had so much fun being a guest for this release! Thank you, Julee! I love my stamping friends so much!!! I am so grateful for the friendships I have made over the years that have continued even though I have been "missing" for a few (or more) years! I think that sentiment fits perfectly with how I am feeling! Thanks for fluttering by!!!