Thursday, June 25, 2009

This Week I'm the Guest Designer on The Next Level

My card won the challenge for week #2 of the wonderful new ezine challenge blog The Next Level. My prize was that I get to be guest designer for week #5 - that's this week. Here is the card I made for their very complicated sketch this week. The one thing that wasn't a challenge was that you had to sew on your card, which I have been doing for the past year. In fact, I can't make a card now without sewing on it - it just feels naked with no stitching!!

I wanted to pick a completely different theme for my card and had been yearning to do something beachy and tropical. I hit our one local scrapbook store and fortunately they had some very yummy paper by My Mind's Eye. I had to borrow the flamingo stamp from my sweet friend & SU demo Stasia and then dug out my stand-by hibiscus stamp from Stampendous.

The images were colored with Copic markers. The "bamboo" railing was cut with the Cuttlebug and Floral Borders die from a woodgrain pattered paper. I cut the large background circle with my Creative Memories cutting system. Since one of the requirements was sewing, I decided to use a fancy stitch. It was a real struggle with my sewing machine. I see some really beautiful fancy stitching on some cards which I love, but my machine just isn't up to that level. It was all I could do to get it to sew this stitch in a full circle and it wanted to tear holes in the paper.

The sketch called for a sentiment in the upper left corner so I made it a sun - can you tell it's a sun? I had to paper piece it by punching out some stars, cutting them up and gluing to the back of a circle. I glittered the rays as well as the hibiscus flower.

My First Card as Creative Imaginations Guest Designer

This fortnight's challenge on the Creative Imaginations Challenge Blog is to follow their sketch and make a Father's Day card. It was a challenge because I don't have a lot of masculine stamps. The main image is from a Stampin' Up set I bought last year, just so I would have a guy type set. Good thing, huh? I really love the image of the doggie cuddled up on his master's work boot. With the vertical strip called for in the sketch, I created a lacing similar to what you would find on a work boot. Then topped it off with a jumbo eyelet to fasten down the sentiment "Enjoy Your Day". The Chocolate Chip panel that the lacing is on was first stamped in Chocolate Chip ink with the Weathered background stamp which has a woodgrain pattern, then run through the Cuttlebug with the Distressed Stripes embossing folder. The DSP is from SU's retired Outlaw paper pack. I love that pack, hord it and use it very sparingly!! The image was colored with Copic markers and the Happy Father's Day sentiment is from the old, old SU set All Year Cheer III.

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Celebrating an American Summer

Vintage summer in small town America. I don't know if it is still the same because I now live in a metropolitan area, but I remember growing up in a small town. Summer was a patriotic time, a time of long, relaxed days sitting on a porch, fishing at the lake, eating tomatoes and sweet corn. Roasting marshmallows after a day of swimming...wonderful memories remembered with black and white photographs.

This card started out as a 4th of July card with a couple of teddy bears in a wagon waving a flag. But the more I worked on it, the more I remembered the summer days of my childhood and that sent me searching for stamps to put those memories on paper.

The springer spaniel holding the flag is a Whispers stamp I picked up last year and have used several times. The rest of the stamps are vintage stamps from The Artistic Outpost. I love these stamps and have used them a number of times also. The card turned out to be a collage type mock up of an old photo album. I distressed the edges and sanded some of the papers for a worn look. The papers are printed out from a digital download from Scrapbook Bytes. I fell in love with a number of digital scrapbooking kits by Designs by Krista at that site. The inside sentiment "Proud to be an American" was printed via the computer.

Here's the card recipe:

Stamps: Keeper and Home by Artistic Outpost, Whispers by Sugarloaf Products, SU Stars & Swirls, Lexicon of Love
Paper: Celebrate America by Designs by Krista, SU Whisper White, Real Red & Night of Navy
Ink: Stewart Superior India Ink, Creamy Caramel, Tim Holtz Vintage Photo distress ink, Real Red, Night of Navy, White craft ink
Accessories: Deckle edge scissors, Cuttlebug, Consentric Stars die, Spellbinders tag die, SU Brass Hodgepodge Hardware. sewing machine

What are your childhood summer memories?

Friday, June 19, 2009

Seven Days of Greetings

Here's my challenge entry for this week's The Next Level challenge. This week's challenge was a sketch. I thought the layout was very cool.

I am also entering it into the challenge for Cute Card Thursday which is to make a card with a tag on it somehow, anywhere. This should qualify, huh?? LOL!!!

I made a pocket heart for a scrapbook layout earlier in the week and had a lot of fun with it. I thought the heart would be a good substitute for the rectangle image on the sketch, but I am not sure that I like it tilted on an angle. It fits perfectly, but I think it is hard to tell that it is a heart. So this is another card that I am not sure if I really like it or not. Maybe it will grow on me - LOL! With the scrapbook layout, I had filled the heart with six journaling tags. With the tag required by the sketch, there was a possibility of seven tags hence the idea of seven days of greetings. There is a lovely sentiment stamped on the back of each tag. My intent is to tell the recepient to pull a random tag each day for seven days and that will be my greeting to her for the day. The lovely sentiments are from PaperTrey Ink's Out on a Limb and Everyday Blessings sets. If you click on the photo, it will open up, should you wish to read the greetings.

The vintage rose and yellow dotted paper are digital downloads. This was my first experience in printing my own paper. It worked out okay but I am not sure of the cost efficiency in terms of buying color ink cartridges for my printer. The other drawback is that I like 12x12" designer paper and I can only print 8.5x11 on my printer. Also, the paper image prints out as a square so it doesn't even fill up the whole sheet of paper. There are some really amazing paper prints out there in the digital world. Mine came from Raspberry Road Designs. Some were free and I also purchased some other paper packs. The Next Level Challenge blog has a terrific feature called Grab Some Stash each week. This week they featured Raspberry Roads and their free downloads so I thought I would give it a try.

Card Recipe:
Paper: SU's Very Vanilla and Bashful Blue, Raspberry Road Digital Download Paper
Ink: SU Forest Foliage (retired)
Accessories: Prima paper roses, Lace from Lace Heaven, KaiserCraft pearls, ribbon from Jo-Ann's, Pocket Heart template from Splitcoast Stampers, Spellbinders Tags and Ovals dies, sewing machine.

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Chocolate & Pearls

I wanted to share a scrapbook layout that I made this week. It's very vintage. I love the colors and thought it turned out very nice. I especially love the heart pocket. There is a template on Splitcoast Stampers for it.

I made a ribbon frame card for a challenge on The Next Level last week and loved it so much that I thought it would be a great central element in a scrapbook layout too. But then when I made the pocket heart, I think that became the main focal point. It worked out great to hold the journaling tags. You can journal on the front of the tag or just on the back.

I heat embossed all the photo mats with the SU Flourish background stamp and clear EP. The bottom mats were cut with my Creative Memories cutting system and the Victorian cutting wheel.

Here's the ingredients for this layout:
Paper: main background is K&Co. from the Life's Journey stack, Chocolate Chip and Soft Sky from SU, vellum
Stamps: Inkadinkado for the floral flourishes and SU Filigree, Rubbernecker stamp for the sentiment
Ink: Chocolate Chip and Versamark
Accessories: Spellbinders Tag Dies and Labels 4 for the frame and the little photo corners, Cuttlebug Vintage die, KaiserKraft chocolate pearls, Martha Stewart border punch, Martha Stewart blue/brown ribbon, other ribbon from Jo-Ann's, lace purchased online from Lace Heaven

Lovely Blog Award

This must be the week for me to receive blog awards. I just received the Lovely Blog awared from Lovely Linda. I am just getting to know Linda as she first posted on my blog a couple of weeks back and now I'm seeing her work entered into a number of blog challenges as well as on Splitcoast Stampers. With all the blogs she is visiting, I am honored that she chose mine as one to give this award to!
For this award, we are to pass the award to 6 other blogs that we’ve newly discovered and to contact the bloggers to let them know they have been chosen for this award. If we can’t pass it on to 6 just pass it on to as many or as few as we like!
I have chosen the following to receive the Lovely Blog award:
So stop on over and check out their blogs!

Monday, June 15, 2009

Exciting News!!!

I woke up this morning to find I had been invited to join two design teams as a guest designer!! You can't beat that for an exciting Monday morning!!

I have a one week guest designer appearance on The Next Level for their Week #5. Here is the card that won me that spot. And for the Creative Inspirations Challenge Blog I have a three month guest designer spot. Here is the card that won me that opportunity. I have to say that the Blue Lace card is one of my all time favorites of all the cards I have ever made and I'm so happy it won me a three month guest DT spot.

Thanks to everyone who left me nice comments about those and other cards!

Saturday, June 13, 2009

Friendship Blog Award

I received this beautiful Friendship Blog Award from my friend Brandy and then another from my friend Margaret. This is what the award is about:

These blogs are exceedingly charming. These kind bloggers aim to find and be friends. They are not interested in self-aggrandizement. Our hope is that when the ribbons of these prizes are cut, even more friendships are propagated. Please give more attention to these writers. Deliver this award to five bloggers who must choose at least five more and include this cleverly-written text into the body of their award.

I'd love to share this award with:
True at True's Gifts From the Heart

Dianne at Paper Hugs

For all of you who received this, just copy the award logo and use it in your own blog. Nominate 5 to 10 blogs that you feel show great attitude and gratitude. Link to your nominees within your blog post and comment on their blogs to let them know they've received the award. Link back to the person who gave you the award to show your appreciation.

Thanks so much Brandy and Margaret!

Friday, June 12, 2009

Ribbon Frame

Here's a clever technique I learned this week on The Next Level challenge blog. The challenge was to make any kind of card we wished, but there had to be a ribbon frame on the front. The blog gave a tutorial on how to make one. This is my entry into the challenge.
The first thing I did was to select the ribbon. It had to be something that would knot nicely - not too thick and something that would lay flat. I noticed some of the challenge entries had their ribbon in a perfectly straight line. I was very impressed with that, but didn't try for it here. I actually liked the way it bows out around the nestie frame.
I am also entering this card into the Flourishes Timeless Tuesday challenge for this week. Their challenge is to use designer paper or DSP on your card. This card uses a beautiful paper from the Life's Journey pad from K&Co. It matched up perfectly with the Martha ribbon.

Card Recipe:

Stamps: SU Flourish background stamp and Gentler Times, Inkadinkado, Rubbernecker sentiment
Cardstock: Close to Cocoa, Soft Sky, Life's Journey DSP by K&Co., Vellum

Ink: Close to Cocoa, Versamark

Accessories: Martha Stewart Ribbon, Vintage die, Cuttlebug, Nestabilities Labels die, KaiserKraft chocolate pearls, sewing machine, Martha Stewart border punch, clear EP Registered & Protected

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Daisy Days

I am making a scrapbook layout now and then. I just love these Sara Kay images and thought I would try them out on a scrapbook layout. This is the result. I made this layout and thought it was so cute that I wanted more of the same theme. So I ended up making a card as a companion piece to it. The whole daisy theme started with little Sarah with her picnic basket. It started me off in a "summer days" direction. Then somehow daisies popped into my head, maybe because they are the type of wildflower you might see on a country picnic.

Unfortunately, I am not very skilled at photographing these two page layouts. They are sort of dark and small, but trust me, it is a very cute layout. The recipe is the same as the card below so see that for the materials list.

I used the Cuttlebug embossing folder With Love to do the dry embossing on the photo mats. Several of the mats have journaling tags slid behind them. Registered & Protected

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Daisy Daze

Red gingham, a white picket fence and daisies. Is that summer or what? I am really pleased with the way this card turned out. To me, it has a clean, crisp feel to it while still retaining an aire of sweetness. This little country girl is ready for a picnic on a sunny summer day.

This card was actually designed as a companion piece to a two page scrapbook layout I will post later this week. The layout had a daisy theme and when I finished the layout, I still wanted more daisies and red gingham so I carried the theme on to this card. I pulled out the Cuttlebug Floral Borders die to create the look of a trellis. I know daisies aren't a vining plant, so you'll have to allow me some creative license here. The vine was cut with the same die. I snipped off the little flowers and just used the stem. Once I got my little trellis made, I remembered the Martha Stewart fence border punch and to carry the daisy theme forward, I embossed the base of the fence with the small strip EF from the With Love EF set. It really perked up those tiny embossed daisies when I added a yellow center with a marker.

I punched the Barely Banana panel with a Fiskars border punch. I always have trouble with my corners when using the border punches so I covered up this slight irregularity with a teeny tiny flower that also came from the Floral Borders die and added a itty bitty yellow rhinestone for the center. I liked it so much I carried it along the entire border of the panel.

The inside is pretty simple with crisp red gingham and white. I love the sentiment from Verve Visual that I stamped on a tag that I cut with a Spellbinders tag die. The dry embossing on the message panel is also from the CB With Love EF.

Card Recipe:

Stamps: Sarah Kay image from Stampavie and sentiment from Verve Visual

Cardstock: Barely Banana, Garden Green, Whisper White, Neenah Solar White for the main image, Bella Rose DSP from SU

Ink: Memento Tuxedo Black, Garden Green, Copics for coloring main image, Barely Banana marker for daisy centers, Creamy Caramel and Bashful Blue for sponging background of main image

Accessories: SU flower punch, Cuttlebug Floral Borders and Dandelion dies and With Love embossing folder, Martha Stewart and Fiskars border punches, Barely Banana SU brad, Spellbinders tag die and Mega Rectangle Nestabilities Registered & Protected

Friday, June 5, 2009

Second-Hand Rose

Arrggghh!!! Do you ever just want to scream or throw a card you are working on out the window or into the trash? This card had me so frustrated. It took about 4 hours longer to make than it should have because I kept making sections over and over to make it fit.

It is an aperature card that I made for the first weekly challenge of a new challenge ezine blog called The Next Level. It was a great challenge and I was itching to get started. I had a perfect layout in mind. The second half of the challenge was to make a faux Prima lollipop paper flower. The wonderful people at The Next Level even gave us a tutorial on how to make a lollipop flower.

I knew I wanted the handmade flower to be the main focal point of the card and because I decorate all the panels of my cards with several layers of cardstock, I had to cut holes in all of the panels and the hitch was, they had to line up perfectly (can you say do-over???). Then I struggled with the front. Okay, so I had an aperature, now what? So I played around with that for an extra hour. Then I wasn't happy because there was no where to write a special message, let alone include a sentiment. So I ended up making a pocket and a tag on the back panel for the sender to write a message.

Overall, I am happy with the card. I wanted it to be primo because the winner gets a one week guest designer spot on the challenge blog and I would love to win that!

Card Recipe:
Stamps: Floral (background stamp)
Paper: K&Co., Old Olive, River Rock
Ink: Versamark, Creamy Caramel for distressing
Accessories: Gold brads, gold pearls, Boss Kutz floruish die, Nestabilities Circle Dies, Cuttlebug, Sewing Machine, Clear EP, lace from Lace Heaven, charm from Pick a Petal (Michael's), SU jumbo eyelet Registered & Protected

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Blue Lace

After making a card on Sunday that I was lukewarm about, today I made a card that I am in love with. The colors and textures are so appealing to my eye. It was a joy to make and I will love looking at it in my studio for the next few days.

I am entering it into Week 10 at the Creative Inspirations Challenge blog. The challenge this week is to make a blue and brown card. I love that color combo and as soon as I read it, I knew I had to make a card using this new blue lace I just purchased last week. To go with the beautiful lace, I had to create a card that was suitably Victorian. Mummmm yummy, that's only my absolute favorite type of card to make. I was in heaven creating and playing around with all the decorative elements for this card.

The top two panels on the front were cut with Oval and Mega Rectangle Nestabilities and embossed on the edges with Cuttlebug Fancy Corners embossing folders. Then I sponged the edges liberally with my favorite Creamy Caramel. The next layer down is split. Half was stamped with the SU Script background stamp in Creamy Caramel and clear embossed. The other half is Cosmo Cricket Gretel DSP which I ripped diagonally. Both are distressed along the edge. The top corner elements were cut with the CB Vintage die and embossed with Tim Holtz Distress Vintage Photo embossing power.

The inside top panel features two Inkadinkado stamps, plus the SU Script BG stamp. The Ecclesiastes verse is from SU. The bottom panel again features the Mega Rectangle Nestie with the CB embossed corners. The back is also prettied up with more of the same stamps, colors and textures.

Card Recipe:
Stamps: SU Words of Wisdom, Garden Collage and Script, Inkadinkado flourishes
Paper: Very Vanilla, Creamy Caramel, Whisper White, Cosmo Cricket Gretel, vellum
Ink: Versamark, Close to Cocoa, Chocolate Chip, Creamy Caramel, Copic markers to color image on front
Accessories: Nestabilities - Mega Rectangles, Rectangles, Ovals, Cuttlebug and Fancy Corners embossing folder, Vintage dies, KaiserKraft chocolate pearls, SU Pretties Kit, button from Jo-Ann's, Prima paper roses, lace from Lace Heaven, Tim Holtz Vintage Photo Distress Embossing Power

Don't forget, with Blogger, if you want to see the detail close up, just double click on the photo and it will open up a full screen image. Registered & Protected

Monday, June 1, 2009

A Country Greeting

Good Monday morning to you all! Last week was an extremely wet week here in Miami, Florida. I see the sun just peeking out this morning and the weatherman says it is supposed to clear. I hope so! Every time it rains, my roof leaks! The roofers can't work in the rain so it leaked again all last week. They are here again this morning and hopefully will find the leak and patch it properly this time!!

Do you ever make a card and then not be sure how you feel about it? Well, after spending so much time making this one, I just can't decide if I like it or not. I don't hate it. It's more like I am lukewarm about it. Some of my cards I fall in love with, but not this one. I recently purchased a bunch of lace to use on my cards so you will be seeing more with lace in the near future. I saw the technique on a blog recently where you put lace around the outside, plus I have had this Rubbernecker stamp for quite awhile and it had never seen ink so I paired it up with the lace. I think the country birdhouse is so pretty and really like the distressing technique here, but the overall card just doesn't wow me.

Leave me a comment and let me know what you think and if you have any suggestions for improving it, let me know that too!
I've had this country print paper in my stash for over a year and thought it gave the card a very quaint feel. And I do like the glazed, paper toiled flowers.

Card Recipe:
Stamps: Rubbernecker, SU's Garden Collage (for the sentiment)
Paper: Whisper White for shell, Neenah Solar White for coloring with Copics, Chocolate Chip, DSP is Paper Pizazz
Ink: Memento Tuxedo Black, Creamy Caramel, Tim Holtz Vintage Photo Distress Ink, Copics for coloring image
Accessories: Stickles, KaiserKraft Rhinestones, Wooden button from Jo-Ann's, Hemp twine, lace, Crystal Effects

Have a great week! Stay dry and let me know what you think of this card...I'm still not sure how I feel about it.
Blog Widget by LinkWithin

I changed my font at