Monday, September 30, 2013

Merry Christmas Tree

Hi everyone.  It's Monday and time for the next Merry Monday Challenge.  This week it's a color challenge ... take a look at the inspiration photo below.

I was excited when I saw the challenge because I knew I had designer paper with those very colors ... and I'm always happy when I can use up some of my designer paper "collection" :)

I used a new die from Lil' Inkers (love the built in stitching), cutting three layers (one of DP - for the top layer ... and two heavy white card stock layers, all glued together to create a nice, thick die-cut).  I used a snowflake embossing folder for the backdrop of the tree ... and adorned the tree with a tiny bow of red twine.  The sentiment is from Paper Smooches and I love the font ... so fun and whimsical and perfect for the whimsical stitched tree.

Here's a close-up:

Stamps:  Christmas Sampler (Paper Smooches)
Paper:  White (C.C. Designs); Be of Good Cheer DP, Gumball Green (SU!)
Ink:  Real Red (SU!)
Accessories & Tools:  Big Shot, Holly Jolly dies (Lil' Inkers), Snowflake embossing folder (Cuttlebug), Maraschino Twine (The Twinery), Square Nestabilties (Spellbinders), Stamp-a-ma-jig, glue, adhesives, and dimensionals

I hope you'll join us for this fun challenge at Merry Monday (#77).  Check out the challenge on Lesley's blog and see all the beautiful cards by the rest of the Design Team.

Saturday, September 28, 2013


Hi everyone.  Here's my DT card is for today's challenge at Addicted to CAS.  The challenge is open for two weeks, so lots of time to join in ... we'd love to see your cards!

This challenge is being run by the very talented Sylvia (Poppy's Papercraft Patch) ... and she chose this fabulous word:

Prize:  $25 gift voucher
(please follow the rules to be eligible to win)

I used one of the sponsor's adorable images for today's card.  Here we have sunflowers blooming from early summer until late fall ... so thought a fall sunflower was perfect for this challenge.  I paper pieced the dress and flower pot ... all other sections are colored with Copics.  I've added just a little Crystal Effects to the flower in her hair for added dimension and shine.  Unfortunately, after coloring and paper piecing my image, I went to stamp the sentiment and slipped with my stamp ---- :(  Luckily this doesn't happen to me very often, so I'm thankful for that :)  To salvage, I simply fussy-cut out the whole image and popped it up on a new card front - SAVE! :)

Here's a close-up:

Stamps:  Sunflower girl (The Paper Nest Dolls)
Paper:  White (Neenah); More Mustard card stock (SU!); ?? Designer paper
Ink:  Basic Black (SU!); Copics:  E00, E01, Y21, YR24, E44, E49, W4, G43, YG67, R29, 0 (colorless blender)
Accessories & Tools:  Red chalk (for cheeks), white gel pen, glue, Crystal Effects, Cappuccino twine (The Twinery), adhesives and dimensionals

I hope I have inspired you to join in our fun challenge ...  Addicted to CAS - Autumn / Fall. Come check out all the wonderful creations by the other Design Team members.

Thursday, September 26, 2013

Autumn Tree for Nancy

Hi everyone.  This is the birthday card I made for my good friend, Nancy.  Her birthday was yesterday ...  I hope you had a wonderful birthday, dear friend!!! :)

This tree is one from a set I recently purchased from Paper Smooches. I just love the fall leaves as they turn the beautiful shades of yellow, orange and red.  I sponged several colors of ink onto Whisper White card stock and then used it to paper piece the tree top.  The trunk is a piece of Soft Suede card stock that I embossed with my woodgrain embossing folder, sponged with more ink to darken the embossed lines and then paper pieced as well.  I added small bits of Autumn Flower Soft to the tree top and also on the grass at the base of the tree.  Easy and fun card to make.

Here's a close-up:

Stamps:  Spring Groves (Paper Smooches); Sunny Sentiments (Amy R)
Paper:  White, Whisper White, Soft Suede, Pear Pizzazz (SU!)
Ink:  Soft Suede, Old Olive, Daffodil Delight, Pumpkin Pie, Cajun Craze (SU!)
Accessories & Tools:  Big Shot, Woodgrain embossing folder (SU!), Grass Border (Cheery Lynn), Autumn Flower Soft, sponges, glue, adhesives and dimensionals

I'm entering this into two challenges:

CAS-ology #63 - Autumn

CAS-ual Fridays (CFC115) - Fall Colors plus a leaf

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Enhanced Paper Piecing Tutorial

Hi everyone.  Today is Tutorial Wednesday at Bugaboo's "Catch The Bug" Challenge blog.  When I joined their team as a Guest Designer for September / October 2013, I was asked to write a tutorial.  Since I use the Paper Piecing Technique with a lot of the fun and fabulous Bugaboo images, I thought I'd share some tips and tricks for "Enhanced Paper Piercing".  What is that, you ask??!!  It's just a few suggestions of ways to "step up" your paper piecing technique.  FYI, I have added a link to a printable document on the Techniques Page of my blog.

Paper Piecing is one of my most favorite techniques.  I love the versatility of combining plain and patterned paper on one image … the possibilities are endless.  Today I’m going to show you how to “step-up” your paper piecing with a few simple techniques – it’s all in the details.

Tip:  I run my black marker along the cut edges of each paper piece so the pieces blend with the lines of the image when they are glued down.  It just takes a few minutes and makes a huge difference with the finished image.

Today I’m using the adorable image “Teddy - Rose Hat” from Bugaboo.  Here are all the pieces before I get started.  I have cut out the base image as well so I can pop it up on my card.  I colored the roses and leaves with markers before assembling.

Here is the paper pieced image.  Sometimes I cut out the pieces individually and fit them together.  But for this image, I cut out one base layer from the medium brown for the head and one for the body.  The lighter shade of brown is layered on top of the base and a third layer (nose and rose on tummy) is adhered on top of the second layer ... this is paper layering.  It's such an adorable image just like this!

Here are the same pieces, but I've added some sponging around the outside edges of each piece.  The subtle shading gives a lot more depth to the image.

And here is the same image again (with the shading).  This time I've added a second set of paws, raising them up by adding a touch of glue at the wrists to adhere them flush to the image, but adding a rolled up glue dot (or you can use a pop-dot if it's not too thick) at the tip of the paws where they meet the feet, to give even more dimension.  This is call the paper tole technique.  Not much extra work, but it adds a lot more character and dimension to the image.

Consider adding texture to the image by dry embossing some of the pieces.  Here I have embossed the straw hat.  It adds more character and dimension and I've also used the paper tole technique when adding a second layer to the rim of the hat.

And here's one final way to "step up" this paper pieced image.  After finishing the paper piecing, layering and paper tole pieces, I added shine by coating the flowers and leaves with glitter glue to add an extra element.

Here's the finished card ...


So next time you decide to paper piece, think about adding one or more of the techniques above to enhance your image.  Or add some other extras ... perhaps twine for the strings of a balloon, felt for a scarf, or flower soft for the center of a flower.  The possibilities are endless.  Have fun!

Monday, September 23, 2013

Let it snow ... let it snow ... let it snow!

Hi everyone.  It's Monday and time for the next Merry Monday Challenge! :)  Today it's a theme challenge :)

I just love this little guy from Bugaboo.  I printed him out a few times, fussy cut the whole image and then paper pieced his jacket, scarf, nose and an extra layer of his feet! :)  I ripped two layers of white card stock for the snow and added dazzling diamonds to the top for some shine (hard to see in photo - sorry about that!).  I also added some dazzling diamonds to the snowball he's holding ... looks like he's ready for a snowball fight!! :)

The background is Pool Party card stock ... I simply stamped two sizes of snowflake stamps randomly in Whisper White ink.  Then I loaded a toothbrush with water and Whisper White re-inker and splattered more "falling snow" over top.  I finished the card by adding a simple sentiment ... and some knotted twine with a snowflake die (also covered in dazzling diamonds).

I had so much fun making this card and I was smiling the whole time ... :)

Edited to Add:  I'm going to enter this in the Pixie's Crafty Snippets Playground #91 ... I used lots of little snippets for the paper piecing! :)

Here's a close-up:

Stamps:  Lil Snowman (Bugaboo); Holiday Cheer - snowflakes (Hero Arts), Snowman Sayings (Amy R)
Paper:  White (C.C. Designs); Snap Life (Simple Stories); Old Olive, Pool Party (SU!)
Ink:  Whisper White, Basic Black (SU!)
Accessories & Tools:  Big Shot, Smal Snowflakes die (Impression Obsession), dazzling diamonds, Square Lattice embossing folder (Sizzix for SU!), toothbrush, Stamp-a-ma-jig, Caribbean twine (The Twinery), glue, adhesives, and dimensionals

I hope I've inspired you to check out the challenge on Lesley's blog (Always Playing with Paper), and also see the fabulous cards made by the rest of the Design Team.  Come and join in the fun!!

Saturday, September 21, 2013

Espresso Yourself!

Hi everyone.  Here is my Design Team card for the latest challenge at Bugaboo's Catch The Bug Challenge blog - Bingo!!

I picked the vertical line on the left:  Player's Choice (paper piecing), circle, twine.

I used a sweet digital stamp from Bugaboo called "Coffee Time - Espresso Yourself". The coffee cups are paper pieced with the designs colored with Copic markers.  The sentiment is from a different digital stamp set called "Coffee Time - Thanks a Latte".  I added two knotted strands of twine and cut out an extra heart for the embellishment.  Easy, peasy and so much fun!!!

Here's a close-up of the image:

Stamps:  Coffee Time - Espresso Yourself, Coffee Time - Thanks a Latte (Bugaboo)
Paper:  White (C.C. Designs); Snap Life (Simple Stories); Silver (SU!)
Ink:  Copics:  R29, E77, YR24, YG95, YR07,
Accessories & Tools:  Cappuccino Twine (The Twinery), glue, glue dots, and adhesives

I hope you'll join us for this fun challenge!!  Check out Catch the Bug Challenge Blog for the rules and to see the wonderful creations from the Design Team.

Thursday, September 19, 2013

More Autumn Maple Leaves

Hi everyone.  I have two more maple leaf cards to share with you today.  I'm holding a workshop on the Saturday ... we'll be making four cards, two of which will be maple leaves ... one from a couple of days ago that I posted with gold embossing and twine ... and one of the two cards from today - my "students" will get to choose. :)

This uses the same technique as my leaf from a couple of days ago ... click here to see.  I randomly sponged Whisper White cards stock with autumn colors and then die-cut the leaves.  I used a fine metallic gold pen to highlight the embossing of the veins ... and a thick metallic gold pen to outline the leaves.  So happy with how they turned out!

Here's a close-up:

Here's the second card using the same technique, but with a larger die-cut.

It's hard to see that I added two lines of scoring at the bottom for some interest and you can just barely make them out in the close-up photo below.

Stamps:  For You (Rubber Art Stamps)
Paper:  White (C.C. Designs); Whisper White, Early Espresso (1st card) - (SU!)
Ink:  Daffodil Delight, Pumpkin Pie, Cajun Craze, Old Olive, Early Espresso (SU!); Metallic Gold (Colorbox)
Accessories & Tools:  Big Shot, Small Leaves 2 and Large Leaves 2 dies (Cheery Lynn), Twigs and Berries die (Memory Box), gold twine, scoring tool and template, Stamp-a-ma-jig, glue, adhesives and dimensionals

My friend Nancy is hosting her first Color Challenge at SCS (CC444) and I entered a couple of days ago.  The top card will be my second entry into that challenge - I LOVE the colors that Nancy picked for her very first gig as hostess - great job Nancy!!

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Pure Sunshine

Hi everyone.  Today's card is honoring Cindy (frienziedstamper at SCS).  She is this week's Queen for the Day (QFTD181).  Congrats Cindy!!

I CASE'd (copy and share everything) this card from Cindy's fabulous gallery.  I sponged the background using different shades of the colors she used, and added two stencils:  Tile Texture from Crafter's Workshop; and a stencil I made using my Little Leaves die from Sizzix.  I placed the sponged and stenciled panel on my card base and added a card front with the circle die-cut.  A simple sentiment finishes the card.

Here's a close-up:

Stamps:  Sunny Sentiments (Amy R)
Paper:  White (C.C. Designs); Whisper White (SU!)
Ink:  Daffodil Delight, Tempting Turquoise, Bermuda Bay (SU!)
Accessories & Tools:  Big Shot, Circle Nestabilities (Spellbinders); Tile Texture stencil (Crafter's Workshop), Little Leaves die (Sizzix), sponges, adhesives, and dimensionals

Card Candy Giveaway # 7 - Winner

Thanks to everyone that commented on my latest Card Candy Giveaway - #7 (Christmas Trees).  I used the True Random Number Generator to pick the winner of the Card Candy:

True Random Number Generator 16 Powered by RANDOM.ORG

... and the winner is ...

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Autumn Maple Leaf

Hi everyone.  Today's card is for a couple of challenges.  This week at SCS, the Free For All Challenge (F4A186) is to use gold on your card ... with extra points if it is an autumn theme.  After seeing the Color Challenge at SCS last night, I realized that this also fits for it (although a couple of the shades are not exact).  And I used CAS - Colours and Sketches - Sketch Challenge #42 for my layout ... I just moved the focal point lower on the page and made my card the standard size, rather than square.

Edited to Add:  I just saw that the challenge at Simon Says is Emboss it! ... so I'm entering this card there also! :)

I hardly every heat emboss anymore ... it makes such a mess ... correction - I make such a mess! :), when using the powders.  But when I saw the challenge to use gold, I knew right away that I wanted to emboss the outline of the maple leaf in gold.  I don't remember the manufacturer of the gold embossing powder I have, but it has specks of other colors through it and is really pretty.

I first randomly sponged Whisper White card stock with yellow, green, orange and rust and then stamped the leaf outline with Versamark and heat embossed with gold.  Then I fussy-cut the leaves ... I am so happy with how it turned out.  I sponged a quarter sheet, so I decided that since I already had the embossing powder out, I might was well stamp and emboss as many leaves as possible from the sheet.  I managed to get three maple leaves and two oak leaves  - bonus!  I've used two maple leaves on the card above (one on the inside) and will save the other leaves for later projects.

Here's a close-up:

I used some twine that I got for as a gift a while back from my friend Debbie.  It has a gold thread wound through it and it matches the embossing perfectly.  A simple sentiment in Soft Suede ink finishes the card.

Stamps:  Gently Falling (SU!); Be Happy Sentiments (Amy R)
Paper:  White (C.C. Designs); Whisper White (SU!)
Ink:  Daffodil Delight, Old Olive, Pumpkin Pie, Cajun Craze, Soft Suede, Versamark (SU!)
Accessories & Tools:  sponges, gold embossing powder, heat tool, gold twine, Stamp-a-ma-jig, adhesives and dimensionals

Monday, September 16, 2013

Glittery Poinsettia

Hi everyone.  It's Monday again and time for the Merry Monday Challenge.  This week we have a color challenge ... and a beautiful photo to inspire you.

I used vanilla colored watercolor paper for my card base, and two panels of embossed card stock (Early Espresso and Gold) to anchor my glittery Christmas Poinsettia.  I used a paint brush to add gold glitter glue to all the petals for the added shimmer. :)

Here's a close-up:

Stamps:  Christmas Greeting (SU!)
Paper:  Watercolor; Early Espresso, Gold, Real Red (SU!)
Ink:  Early Espresso, Real Red (SU!)
Accessories & Tools:  Big Shot, Blooming Poinsettia (Poppy Stamps), Square Lattice embossing folder (Sizzix for SU!), Musical Flourish embossing folder (Cuttlebug), gold glitter glue, stylus and mat, Stamp-a-ma-jig, glue, adhesives and dimensionals

I hope you'll pop by and check out the challenge on Lesley's blog ... and see all the lovely cards made by the rest of the Design Team ... lots of inspiration there!! :)

Sunday, September 15, 2013

A Frugal Christmas Challenge

Hi everyone.  Nessa (The Crafty Laydee) is one of the blogs that I just started following recently, and today, she has added a challenge to her blog - A Frugal Christmas Card Competition.  A few days ago she mentioned that she had given away most of her Christmas stamps and dies a few years back, thinking that she wasn't going to make Christmas cards anymore.  Well, this year she is inspired again so wants to get started on her Christmas stash ... problem is that she doesn't want to go and spend a lot of money buying new supplies.  So she has put out a challenge to her friends and blog followers ... create a Christmas card using everyday stamps and tools.  You can see her original post here with all the info about how this came about.

I created the card above by ripping two layers of white card stock for my snow ... and then using a scallop circle punch to create my tree.  I'm really happy with how it turned out.  I punched out circles from three different scraps of Christmas designer papers and then cut them into a triangle shape (the largest has five scallops, the middle has four scallops and the top has only tree).

Using scraps also qualifies me to enter this into the Pixie Crafty Snippets Playground Challenge #90 ... and I'm also entering this into Crafty Hazelnut's Christmas Challenge #142 - cut something and also Crafty Hazelnut's Christmas Extra Challenge for September - Anything Goes.

Here's a close-up of the tree:

Thanks Nessa for the fun challenge.  I'm hoping I can come up with other ideas to enter again.

Stamps:  Christmas Sampler (Paper Smooches)
Paper:  White; Be of Good Cheer - retired, silver glimmer (SU!)
Ink:  Real Red (SU!)
Accessories & Tools:  Big Shot, Star die (Simon says), scallop circle punch, clear stickles, Maraschino twine (the Twinery), glue, adhesives and dimensionals