Wednesday, February 21, 2018

Sparkle and shake

Goodness, I can't believe it's been a week and a half since my last blog post. I worked overnight shifts on Monday and Tuesday last week, and I just couldn't get back into the swing of things the rest of the week. (And I've been staying up later than I should watching the Olympics.) I'll try to get back on track this week!

At the end of January, one of my team leads at work celebrated his fortieth birthday, and naturally he needed a card. I thought the occasion called for something a little more elaborate than my clean and simple style, so I went with a little sparkle and shake.

Supplies (all Stampin' Up! unless otherwise noted):
Stamps: Inside & Out: Birthday (Papertrey Ink), In My Thoughts
Paper: Basic Black, Shimmery White, Pear Pizzazz, Bermuda Bay, Tempting Turquoise card stock; window sheets; Oreo Stars paper (Bella Blvd); Absinthe, Sea Glass, Harborside Mirri sparkle glitter paper (The Paper Cut)
Ink: Memento Tuxedo Black, journaling pen
Accessories: Balloon Pop-Up Thinlits dies, Balloon Bouquet punch, Party Punch Pack, silver glass glitter, Rhythm 'N Blues and Go Green sequins (Craft Medley), sparkling clear sequins (Pretty Pink Posh), Art Glitter Glue (Art Institute Glitter), foam adhesive strips

What do you think? I know a lot of people don't like black as the main color for cards, but I think it can look elegant, and it really helps the bright balloons stand out on this card.

To make the shaker element, I die cut a piece of Shimmery White card stock with the Balloon Pop-Up Thinlits dies and then trimmed the panel to create an even border around the opening. I stamped a sentiment on the banner and adhered the panel to a window sheet.

To decorate the panel, I used the Balloon Bouquet punch to punch out the solid balloon shapes from colored card stock. Using the decorative dies in the Thinlits set, I cut the stripe and polka dot details and the little bow out of sparkle paper. I glued the layers together and then glued the balloons and bow to the focal panel.

For assembly, I cut a piece of patterned paper to the size of the focal panel and centered it on a Basic Black card base. (I think this card was a bit narrower than a traditional A2 card. I trimmed the card base so there was an even border around the focal panel.) I glued a few scattered sequins onto the patterned paper and then added a little pile of loose sequins and silver glass glitter. I put foam strips on the back of the focal panel and adhered it over the patterned paper.

Inside the card I adhered a layer of Shimmery White card stock stamped with a sentiment. I also  wanted to add a little bit of color, so I punched tiny balloons out of the three colors of sparkle paper, glued them around the sentiment and drew the balloon strings.

I spent a lot more time than usual making this card -- I couldn't decide on colors, background paper, etc. -- but I really like the end result. I may have to use this layout as inspiration for a few more cards. Thanks for stopping by!

Sunday, February 11, 2018

Valentines: DSP hearts, flower medallions

Do you still have valentines to make this year? I'm sharing the last two card designs I used for the valentines I donated to Meals on Wheels, and they're great quick-and-easy layouts if you're busy with last-minute crafting. (Check out my previous posts to see some punny animal valentines and a few designs that are a bit more masculine.)

Supplies (all Stampin' Up!):
Paper: Thick Very Vanilla note cards and envelopes, Everyday Enchantment Designer Series Paper (DSP), gold foil (kit leftovers)
Accessories: Heart punch, Dimensionals

I made quite a few cards with this design, and they came together pretty quickly. The first time-saver was the pre-cut and -scored note cards, which are one of my go-to crafting items. Using a pack of DSP also made the creative process easier -- all the pages in the pack are designed to coordinate, so I didn't have to dig around for patterns and colors that worked together. I just picked a few pieces from the pack of DSP, cut a bunch of layers for the background (I didn't write it down, but I think the sizes are 1-1/2" x 3" and 3" x 3") and punched hearts for the focal image.

I mixed and matched the patterns on each card to create the background and used a strip of gold foil (leftover from a kit) to cover the "seam." Instead of the foil, you could use a strip of card stock, washi tape or ribbon. I added the punched heart with Dimensionals, and there you go! They are cute as-is, or you could add some embellishments, such as sequins or pearls. (After I took this photo I went back and added a little sparkle by highlighting some of the details in the DSP with a clear Wink of Stella glitter brush pen.)

Supplies (all Stampin' Up! unless otherwise noted):
Stamps: Hello Friend
Paper: Thick Whisper White, Poppy Parade, Pink Passion, Pink Pirouette, Flirty Flamingo card stock
Ink: Pool Party, Lovely Lilac, Bermuda Bay, Tempting Turquoise, Pink Passion, Flirty Flamingo
Accessories: Eastern Medallion Thinlits dies, white baker's twine, acrylic gems (unknown), Mono Multi liquid glue

These are definitely not your typical valentine, but they were easy to make: just one stamp, one die cut and a quick twine bow. The starting point for these 3" x 3" cards was the decorative acrylic "pebbles" in the center of the flowers. (They are domed on one side and flat on the other with a decorative image adhered to the flat side so you can see it through the clear dome.) For Christmas one of my friends gave me a whole bag of these fun little pebbles, and I really wanted to use them. So I sorted through the bag, picked out some with reds, pinks and purples and then found ink and card stock colors that coordinated with the pebbles. (Hence the color combinations that are a little different and not exactly my usual style.) You could easily substitute buttons, brads or any other small embellishment for the pebbles.

That's it for my Meals on Wheels valentines, although I'm still finishing up my own cards to send out. I probably won't be able to share those until the holiday has passed, but I have some cute layouts that would work for friendship, love or thinking of you cards any time of year. So stay tuned for those cards, and thanks for stopping by!

Saturday, February 10, 2018

Valentines: Bottles and buddies

Welcome to the second installment of the valentines I made for Meals on Wheels. (See yesterday's post for some cute cards with animal puns.) Today I'm sharing two card designs made with the Message in a Bottle set and one featuring a little boy and his puppy.

Supplies (all Stampin' Up!):
Stamps: Message in a Bottle
Paper: Neutrals Core'dinations card stock, Subtles Designer Series Paper (DSP) Stack, Whisper White card stock
Ink: Memento Tuxedo Black, Marina Mist, Chocolate Chip, Smoky Slate, Sahara Sand, Real Red marker
Accessories: Brights enamel shapes, red polka dot grosgrain ribbon, Mono Multi liquid glue, Dimensioanls

I wanted to make some valentines that were cute (Valentine's Day has to have a little cute factor, right?) but a little more masculine than usual, and I think these designs work nicely. Like most of the cards I shared yesterday, these are 3" x 3", which is perfect for valentines. Here are a few quick tips about these designs:
- I used the reverse side of the polka dot ribbon so the small cards weren't overwhelmed with too many patterns.
- I hand-drew the little heart on the sail because I couldn't find a stamp or punch small enough.
- Inside the cards I wrote a sentiment along the lines of "Whale you be mine" in the whale card and stamped "You float my boat" in the one with the ship.

Supplies (all Stampin' Up! unless otherwise noted):
Stamps: From the Heart
Paper: Thick Whisper White, Real Red card stock
Ink: Memento Tuxedo Black, alcohol markers (Stampin' Up!, Copic)
Accessories: Stitched Shapes and Layering Squares Framelits dies, red and white twine (Target), Dimensionals

This little boy and his buddy sure seem ready for Valentine's Day! I've had this stamp set for ages, and I still think it's adorable. (There are also images of a little girl, cat and bird in the set.) I colored the focal image with alcohol markers and then cut it out with a stitched square die. I matted it with a red scalloped square for a touch of color and added red and white twine with a simple bow for a little texture. I think this is another clean and simple card design that works well for little guys (and big guys, too!).

In my next post I'll share the last two card designs I created for Meals on Wheels. Until then, thanks for stopping by!

Friday, February 9, 2018

Valentines: Punny little animals

As promised in my last post today I am sharing some of the valentines I made this year to donate to Meals on Wheels. I actually shared my first batch of these valentines in my Jan. 20, 2018, post titled "September 2017 Paper Pumpkin: Alternate projects."

Our local Meals on Wheels organization, which is run through a community center, has about 100 clients. I wanted to make sure everyone received a valentine, so I made a total of 120 cards and told the organizer to use any extras for other activities or groups at the center. A good percentage of those cards were cute, punny 3" x 3" animal valentines. They're all simple cards and pretty self-explanatory, so I'll just share the pictures and supply lists with a few notes as needed. Inside the cards I stamped "Happy Valentine's Day" and wrote a brief note.

Supplies (all Stampin' Up! unless otherwise noted):
Stamps: Jack - Cardmaking (Close to My Heart)
Paper: Whisper White, Primrose Petals card stock; Primrose Petals Core'dinations card stock
Ink: Basic Gray, Primrose Petals
Accessories: Layering Squares Framelits dies, Itty Bitty Accents punch pack, Mini Dimensionals

Supplies (all Stampin' Up! unless otherwise noted):
Stamps: Wild About Ewe, Honey (Raisin Boat)
Paper: Textured Tempting Turquoise, Whisper White card stock
Ink: Memento Tuxedo Black, Warm Gray No. 3 marker (Copic)
Accessories: 2-1/2" circle punch, Melon Mambo polka dot ribbon, Dimensionals

Supplies (all Stampin' Up! unless otherwise noted):
Stamps: Panda (Art Impressions), stitched circle (Endless Creations), Wild About You, Honey (Raisin Boat)
Paper: Textured Taken with Teal, Whisper White card stock
Ink: Melon Mambo; Memento Tuxedo Black; Basic Black marker; dark Smokey Slate Blendabilities; Rose Pink, Cool Gray No. 1, colorless blender (Copic)
Accessories: 2-1/2" circle punch, Melon Mambo polka dot ribbon, Dimensionals

I didn't have room to stamp a sentiment on the front of this card, so I stamped "Bear hugs" inside and then hand-wrote "Happy Valentine's Day."

Supplies (all Stampin' Up! unless otherwise noted):
Stamps: Wild About Ewe, Honey (Raisin Boat), stitched circle (Endless Creations)
Paper: Whisper White, textured Real Red card stock
Ink: Memento Tuxedo Black; Cherry Cobbler, Daffodil Delight, Skin Tone Assortment Blendabilities
Accessories: 2-1/2" circlepunch, clear Wink of Stella glitter brush pen, Daffodil Delight stitched ribbon, Dimensionals

It's hard to see in this photo, but I applied clear Wink of Stella glitter to the bees' wings in these cards so they have a fun sparkle. As with the previous card, for the design on the left I stamped or wrote the pun along with "Happy Valentine's Day" inside the card.

Supplies (all Stampin' Up! unless otherwise noted):
Stamps: This Little Piggy
Paper: Chocolate Chip Pocket Notes and envelopes, Whisper White card stock
Ink: Chocolate Chip pad and marker, alcohol markers (Stampin' Up! and Copic)

This card isn't actually a 3" x 3"; it's called a Pocket Note, and Stampin' Up! sold them years ago. The card size is about 2-1/2" x 3-1/2". I stamped the image with Chocolate Chip ink instead of black; it's a dye ink, so it still worked just fine with the alcohol markers. After the pig was all colored, I used the fine tip of my Chocolate Chip Stampin' Write marker to add the little brown dots on his back and belly.

That's it for the first batch of valentines. Stayed tuned for the rest of the cards in my next two posts. Thanks for stopping by!

Saturday, February 3, 2018

A variety of Rustic Botanicals

For the past couple of weeks I've been busy making valentines to donate to Meals on Wheels, so I haven't had much time for blogging. Well, I finally finished all those cards last night (yippee!), so I'll be sharing them in upcoming posts. But first I want to share a few cards I made with a new stamp set I got for Christmas, Rustic Botanicals from Ellen Hutson.

Supplies (all Stampin' Up! unless otherwise noted):
Stamps: Rustic Botanicals (Essentials by Ellen)
Paper: Basic Gray, Whisper White card stock
Ink: Bermuda Bay, Basic Gray, Old Olive
Accessories: Rustic Botanicals dies (Essentials by Ellen), Large Stitched Rectangles Stackables dies (Lawn Fawn), Stitched Shapes Framelits dies, burlap trim, Morning Dew Nuvo Crystal Drops (Tonic Studios), clear Wink of Stella glitter brush pen, Dimensionals

To make this card and the next one, I started with about half a sheet of white card stock. Using six images from the stamp set and three ink colors, I covered the whole sheet with images. When I do this technique, I always start with the largest image and gradually work down to the smallest image, filling in open spaces. Once I was happy with the result, I cut the piece of card stock in half and used half for each card.

Here are a few additional details about this card:
- I applied clear Wink of Stella glitter on the Bermuda Bay flower on the focal layer.
- I used clear Nuvo Crystal drops on the Basic Gray stamens of that flower. Those were also a Christmas present, and so far I really like them!
- The burlap trim behind the focal layer is actually two pieces. I really wanted to use that trim, but the piece I had left wasn't long enough. So I cut it in half and adhered a piece behind each side of the background.

Supplies (all Stampin' Up! unless otherwise noted):
Stamps: Rustic Botanicals (Essentials by Ellen), Birthday Messages (Simon Says Stamp)
Paper: Basic Gray, Whisper White card stock; Bermuda Bay glimmer paper
Ink: Bermuda Bay, Basic Gray, Old Olive
Accessories: Splatter embossing folder (Taylored Expressions), Large Stitched Rectangles Stackables dies (Lawn Fawn), Citrus sequins (Craft Medley), Dimensionals, Art Glitter Glue (Art Institute Glitter)

For this card I left the stamped background panel as the focal point of the card. I did add a little bling with a few green sequins and a small strip of blue glimmer paper behind the sentiment.

Since I didn't have a separate focal image, I decided to add some detail to the card base. Texture was the perfect way to go, so I used a splatter-style embossing folder to emboss the card front.

Supplies (all Stampin' Up! unless otherwise noted):
Stamps: Rustic Botanicals (Essentials by Ellen)
Paper: Cucumber Crush, thick Whisper White, Basic Black card stock
Ink: Jet Black StazOn, Gelatos (Lime, Margarita Mix; Faber-Castell)
Accessories: Leaves 3-D embossing folder (Sizzix), gold thread, Go Green sequins (Craft Medley), gold Wink of Stella glitter brush pen, Aqua Painter, Art Glitter Glue (Art Institute Glitter), Dimensionals

This card was my first experiment with Gelatos, another Christmas gift. (I must have been good last year, because I got lots of fun crafty stuff!) I'm not crazy about the end result, but I don't hate it, either.

I scribbled some color from the Gelatos on an acrylic block and then used an Aqua Painter to pick up color and paint it over the stamped leaves. The colors look a bit washed out in this photo, but in real life they're bolder.

I added some gold with loops of thread and behind the stamped panel and splatter from a Wink of Stella brush pen. I also added a strip of black card stock behind the bottom of the stamped layer and three light green sequins. The background was made with an embossing folder I got quite awhile ago and had never used. But I think it works perfectly with these leaves.

Thanks for stopping by!