Monday, May 31, 2010

Patriotic Challenge

First of all, I just have to share some really great news with you. I love doing the challenges on Stamping 411 blog. These ladies always have a great sketch for everyone to use, and last week was no different. The great part is, the 411 Operators chose my card as one of their week's pick here. My card is the first one shown. You can check further into my blog for the particulars of the card. Thanks ladies, you really made my day today!!!

Now, let's get going on this week's sketch challenge. You can see it here. Since today is Memorial Day, I thought it appropriate to make a card that will be sent on to thank our soldiers.
It will be added to cards being sent to our troops through the From Our Hearts organization. In fact, the ladies from church will be meeting with me to make more cards for them tomorrow evening. So here is my thanks to the troops:

Stamps: Red, White & Blue Jumbo Wheel
Cardstock: Real Red, Night of Navy, and Whisper White
Ink: Night of Navy and Real Red
Accessories: Jumbo Handle, Paper Corrugator, Star and Large Star Punches, Real Red Gingham Ribbon, and Dimensionals

Hope the service men and women that receive this card like it and really understand how much we appreciate their sacrifice and service. I am in awe of each of the men and women in our military that give up time with their families, put their lives on hold, and sometimes make the ultimate sacrifice of laying down their lives for their country. God bless our service men and women, and God bless America!!

Hope you have thanked a soldier recently. If not, look around, thank God for your liberty, and then thank a veteran! Have a wonderful week.

Thursday, May 27, 2010

Babies, Babies, and More Babies

Seems like that's all I'm thinking about lately. And all that baby-thinking isn't just about my own grandson either!! Today a friend and I are going to visit my new grandbaby - you know the drill. You have to show him off! lol She's babysitting her grandson who was born Easter Sunday, just a few short weeks ago. So we'll get two cute little boy-babies to love on! Plus my daughter and I were invited to another baby shower. This is for a friend's son and wife that are having a new baby in July. They are having a boy too. Seems like there is a pattern going on here, doesn't it? Anyway, I sat down this morning and made two more baby cards to put with our gifts. So that's what I'm sharing with you today.

First up is the card for my daughter to give. She used a gift bag with teddy bears on it, so I had to use a teddy too. The colors used also matched the bag so it was an easy choice.

Stamps: Bundle of Joy (retired)
Cardstock: Barely Banana, Creamy Caramel, Certainly Celery, Very Vanilla and a retired DSP that I don't remember the name of - sorry
Ink: Basic Brown and Creamy Caramel
Accessories: Bit Shot with Perfect Polka Dots Embossing Folder, Scallop Trim Border Punch, Aqua Painter, Certainly Celery Twill Ribbon (retired), and Dimensionals
I love all the baby-soft colors on this card. My dd really doesn't like pale blue at all, so I refrained from using it on her card. But then I settled down to make my card, and wanted it to match the gift bag I was using. It's the cutest white bag with just a blue choo choo train on it. And, oh yes, that Bashful Blue was really used on my card too!! lol

Stamps: Choo Choo and Sweetness Unlimited
Cardstock: Bashful Blue, Ballet Blue, and Whisper White
Ink: Ballet Blue and Bashful Blue
Accessories: Stamp-a-ma-jig (for lining up the train hitches), Bashful Blue Gingham Ribbon (retired)

It was so much fun making these cards and getting out some of my retired stash of cardstock and accessories! Some of my favorite sets have been retired, so I can't use them at all in my business, but still get them out for personal use. And I'm working on using up some of my cardstock that will be retiring soon. I mean, there's only so much room available in my stamping dungeon, and you know I have to make room for the new goodies that will be coming soon. It's all stuff that I can't live without, so I gotta get it, right?? I'm so glad you agree with me! Now I can tell my hubby that I have the go-ahead to order everything I think I might need! Well, maybe not everything!! LOL
Have a wonderful day and find time to get some stamping done too. Creativity does wonders for the soul. Thanks for stopping by. Any and all comments are very appreciated. They really make my day!

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Tropical Party Times 2

Just can't seem to get enough of this Tropical Party set. It recalls memories of Hawaii and former Stampin'Up cruises, and fun with friends. So you can see why this is my current favorite stamp set. At least for this week anyway! lol Come on - I know you go in spurts with special stamp sets too. Where every time you sit down to stamp you grab that certain set until you practically wear it out. Thank goodness Stampin' Up! makes high-quality stamps so they don't wear out, otherwise there are certain sets I'd have to keep buying over and over again! Wouldn't that be the pits!! But I digress. You came for ideas, and that is what we have today. The components are the same, the sets is the same, but they look pretty different. One makes me feel relaxed, the other loudly shouts "PART-AY". So here we go...

Stamps: Tropical Party, A Little Birthday Cheer
Cardstock: Pumpkin Pie, So Saffron, Old Olive, Tempting Turquoise, and Whisper White with Island Oasis Designer Series Paper
Ink: Basic Brown, So Saffron, Pumkin Pie, Tempting Turquoise
Accessories: AquaPainter, Turquoise Grosgrain Ribbon, Modern Label Punch, and Dimensionals

When you look at this card, don't you want to turn up the music and start dancin'? And don't forget to get yourself a pina colada! Get one for me too!

Now, move on down to the next card. What's the feeling it invokes? It reminds me of one of our cruise stops when we were on the beach lying in a double hammock between two palm trees. Can you feel the breezes and the swaying of the hammock? Mmmmm.... Don't bother me now, I'm dreaming of paradise! Ok, back to reality now. Let's get on with the info!

Stamps: Tropical Party and Teeny Tiny Wishes
Cardstock: Kraft, Pumpkin Pie, Old Olive, and Whisper White, with Island Oasis Designer Series Paper
Ink: Pumpkin Pie and Melon Mambo ink pads, Old Olive and Chocolate Chip markers
Accessories: Big Shot with Square Lattice Embossing Folder, Large Oval, Wide Oval, and Scallop Oval Punches, Old Olive 1/4" Grosgrain Ribbon, Paper Snips, and Dimensionals

It's a little hard to tell in the picture, but the flowers were stamped using the rock 'n roll technique. It just add a little extra pop and makes the flowers look more luscious like they do in the tropics.

Just a little side note: if you notice the layouts of both cards, you'll see they're very similar, just the sizes and placement of the layers are a little different. If you're really comfortable with a simple layout like this, don't be afraid to use it often. Just change the color, position and dimensions of the layers and it really changes the look of your creation. That's part of the fun of stamping - take the same layout and add your own little twist to make it different and special!

Have a great day today. Thanks for stopping by. Hope I could give you some fun ideas to use as a starting place for your own creations! That's all for now - I think it's time for me to see my grand-baby!!!

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Another Toile Look

First I have to make a comment or two about yesterday's sample. If you went to the Stamping 411 site, you saw a sample that had the same set, colors, and dsp print that I used. I guess great minds think alike. I try very hard not to look at the samples posted before I work on my card. I was sort of shocked after I posted and then looked around. There seem to be alot of us out there that really like the Tropical Party stamp set, 'cuz there were lots of samples using that set.

That said, on with the newest card idea. I wanted something for my Hostess Club ladies that would be feminine but not too frilly. Plus we needed to work with some new products, of course! hehe I had just gotten the Vanilla Smooch last week and hadn't used it yet - it would be perfect for what I had in mind. And as usual, it has an texture-embossed layer for extra interest. Hope you like it and try this one out for yourself!

Stamps: Elements of Style
Cardstock: Creamy Caramel, Close to Cocoa, and Very Vanilla
Ink: Creamy Caramel, Close to Cocoa
Accessories: Big Shot used with Square Lattice Textured Embossing Folder and Lots of Tags Sizzlits, Chocolate Satin Ribbon, Aqua Painter, Vanilla Smooch Spray, Sponge quarters, and Dimensionals

I'm still learning about using the Smooch Spritz. The major thing I've found is that you shouldn't shake the vial unless you want a splotchy spray. It seems to spray much finer when you don't shake it up. Now I've got to go back and try it out with the Log Cabin Smooch. When I tried it earlier, it was heavily splotched and not what I wanted for that card. Ah well, that's what you have me for! I do it wrong, figure it out, and let you know how to use it the rightway and save you all the headaches! Oh well, as long as I'm having fun, who cares!! LOL

Ok, I've got to get ready for my ladies tonight. Maybe I have time to make some goodies for them. yummmmm...

Monday, May 24, 2010

Tropical take on a Challenge

Ok, we're back in business today! No running over to see the grandbaby. No sir, not today. I'm actually staying home and getting something done!! Aren't you proud of me? What's that? You don't really care what I do? Oh nuts. Well, that's all right, I'm sure there's someone out there that is gonna love my card idea. After lunch I sat down and checked in at the Stamping 411 Challenge for the week. It was another good one (aren't they all???). And since I happened to have some lovely Island Oasis Designer Series Paper sitting around that I hadn't opened yet, I figured now was the time! Hope you like my take on the challenge.
Stamps: Tropical Party and Teeny Tiny Wishes
Cardstock: Old Olive, Tempting Turquoise, and Very Vanilla with Island Oasis DSP
Ink: Basic Brown, Old Olive, Tempting Turquoise, and Pumpkin Pie
Accessories: Aqua Painter, Big Shot with Square Lattice Impressions Embossing Folder, Earth Elements Mini Brads, Cutter Kit, and Dimensionals
I love how easy it was to pull this card together once I decided to use the DSP and stamp set. The color choices came from the DSP and I added the distressed texture to the edges to go with an island feel. And I just had to use the newest embossing folder, Square Lattice. Either side of the design gives you wonderful texture and feel. I am so hooked on using texture on cards, and on using this embossing folder especially! If you don't have it yet, what are you waiting for??
Go to the Stamping 411 blog and check out all the other ideas. They always have great ideas that are wonderful to use for your cardmaking. And play along with the challenge if you have time. It's fun!
Now, what should I do next? Hmmm, baby?? No, no, not today. Gotta be good and give them a break. Maybe I'll do some laundry or stamp up another card or two. Have a great week.

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Totally Toile

Back a few years, my daughter had a beautiful black and cream toile bedroom set. Along with that, she had painted her bedroom walls a lovely taupe color with black accents. She has superb taste in decorating, and it was gorgeous and very elegant. That look she acheived was the impetus for the card I'm sharing today. First I chose the new stamp set Elements of Style - what a vintage looking set! The artwork on it is just perfect for the look of toile.
I think she would like my interpretation of her bedroom. Instead of taupe, I used the Kraft cardstock for a neutral accent. Of course, I had to add skinny layers of black to mimic her skinny trim near the top of her walls. She loves crown moldings, but this time instead of something thick and substantial, she used skinny trim molding. It was a nice touch and not too heavy and dark at the top of the walls. That was the look I wanted to acheive here, and I think it came out great!
Stamps: Elements of Style
Cardstock: Kraft, Basic Black, Very Vanilla
Ink: Basic Black, Sahara Sand
Accessories: 1" and 1 1/4" Circle Punches, Word Window Punch, AquaPainter, Basic Black Satin Ribbon, Vintage Brads, and Dimensionals
Hope you like this idea today. It's fun to look around and find something to inspire a color combo or style of card. If you use this idea, share your version with me. I'd love to see it!
Yes, I'm off to see the grandbaby now. Today the schedule was first church, then lunch and blog, then play with grandbaby. Yup, I'm in heaven!! Have a great day and make sure you find time to do something you really love!!!

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Carson has arrived!

Yes, the wait is over! After a really crazy week, I'm finally back to share our wonderful news. Carson arrived Wednesday evening and is a perfectly precious little boy. He weighed in at 7 pounds 10 ounces and 20 inches long. After quite a long and hard labor, mom is doing fine and dad is thrilled with his 'little man'. And of course, Gramps and I are equally thrilled too. In fact, I'm having trouble putting him down. He seems to be permanently attached to my arms!!
I know these pics really aren't about card ideas, but you'll just have to bear with me for a bit as I get used to this wonderful event in our lives. If you know me at all, you know I've been waiting very (im)patiently for this day to come. So now I'm revelling in it!
Besides that, both our computers died last Sunday and it's been crazy not getting emails or being able to check orders, read blogs, or anything! Sometimes I get really frustrated with this machine, but what would I ever do without it?! Hubby was an angel staying home to field phone calls from family, friends, and customers while I was at the hospital helping. In between all the calls he worked on our computers and called in help from our son's friend. So far, my computer is now up and running fine, but his might not make it. We're keeping our fingers crossed that it can be salvaged. Seems like we keep running into alot of extra expenses now that hubby is retired. Oh well, that's the way it goes.
Just have to share another pic of this sweet little guy. See, I told you I can't put him down when I'm in a room with him. Thank heavens his mommy and daddy don't seem to mind having me around too much.
I've ben thanking God for his many blessings, among them a healthy baby to love and cherish!
I promise I'll try to get back to my old schedule asap! Now, I've got to run over and check on my little family today! Ta!

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Still Waiting...

and waiting, and waiting, and waiting (big sigh here!) No sign of the little one's arrival yet. If this waiting is getting to me so much, you can imagine how impatient my darling daughter is right about now! LOL And then yesterday my son flew off to Louisianna to work on the oil spill for the next several months. Seems like everything is just topsy-turvy in my little world right now.

Since my mind has been mostly consumed by thinking of anything other than stamping, seems like I can't really do much in the line of designing cards right now. I had started a card and sort of given up on it 'cuz it just wasn't going the way I saw it in my mind. So today I got it out and finished it up. Not sure if I'm really happy with it yet, but there it is. It's very simple with clean lines and no sponging. Maybe that is what's missing here?! How about giving me some input here and helping me out. Should I just scrap it, leave it the way it is, or fix it somehow????

Stamps: Awash with Flowers, and FYI
Cardstock: Bermuda Bay, Melon Mambo, and Whisper White
Ink: Melon Mambo, Bermuda Bay, Pretty in Pink
Accessories: Bermuda Bay Polka Dot Grosgrain Ribbon, Square Fire Rhinestone Brad, Mat Pack and Piercing Tool, and Dimensionals

See, I told you it was a really simple card idea. I just don't know if it's too simple!
After I had stamped the smallest flower with Pretty in Pink ink, I was surprised how pale it was compared to the other inks. Is that part of the problem?? Should it have been sponged on both white layers? Should there have been a Melon Mambo layer under the sentiment?? Oh, the questions!! But no answers! Please, I'm begging you, give me some input here!

Ok, I guess that's all for today. I'm having trouble really concentrating on anything today. Hope you're all having a better (make that a more productive) day than I am. Enjoy your weekend!

Saturday, May 15, 2010

Yummy Watercolor Trio

Yes, I think this set is just the nicest that I've worked with in a long time. You can very simply just ink it and use it, or you can get more in depth and use markers to color all the images. Either way, it's fabulous to work with! For this card, I did a little (make that a lot of) CASEing from the fabulous Jan Tink here. If you'd like to see what a truly fabulous card looks like, go check hers out. Then you can come back here and see my pitiful take on it! I used fewer layers, changed the sentiment, ribbon and bling, and nixed the sewing. But the colors and layout are all her idea. Thanks Jan for sharing and letting me CASE your fab creation!
The ladies in class this week had a choice of sentiments from the Thoughts and Prayers set to use. Some had been mentioning the need for get well and sympathy cards, so this hopefully filled that need.
Stamps: Watercolor Trio, Itty Bitty Bits, and Thoughts and Prayers
Cardstock: Bashful Blue, Rose Red, Sahara Sand
Ink: Sahara Sand, Wild Wasabi (returning In Color!!), and Rose Red
Accessories: Bashful Blue Grosgrain Ribbon, Brass Build-a-Brad, Itty Bitty Shapes Punch Pack, 1/2" Circle Punch, Mostly Vintage Decor Stencils and Sponge quarter.
Isn't the sponged on stencil image just the absolutely perfect accompaniment for these floral stems? It adds such a lovely elegance to the whole card. I'm so happy Stampin' Up! came out with this smaller size stencil that works perfectly on cards. If you need to get one for yourself, you can just click on the button on the right to order it now!
Thanks for winging on by today. Hope you're enjoying your weekend!

Friday, May 14, 2010

Masculine Birthday or Fathers Day

Yes, unbelievably, Father's Day is fast approaching so it's time to get those masculine stamps brushed off and inked up! Earlier this month I had seen an idea that I thought was the perfect card for a man. Then when I finally had time and went to sit down and stamp it, I looked at the original here, and decided to totally case it. It's really hard to improve on perfection. So thanks Robin for the great idea - it's ideal!
Stamps: Totally Tools, and Teeny Tiny Wishes
Cardstock: Very Vanilla, Basic Black, Mellow Moss, and Brocade Blue
Ink: Basic Black, Mellow Moss, and Brocade Blue
Accessories: Big Shot with Square Lattice Embossing Folder (new!!), AquaPainter, Basic Black 1 1/4" Striped Grosgrain Ribbon, Word Window Punch, Modern Label Punch, 1 1/4" and 1 3/8" Circle Punches, Sponge quarters, and Dimensionals

Isn't the texture on this new embossing folder just the greatest?! After the cardstock is embossed, it almost feels like fabric! I've been using it on so many things lately, and it's definitely my new favorite. And doesn't that ribbon just add the perfect touch of texture and color, yet doesn't look too frou-frou at all! Just perfect! I usually stay away from ribbon and think that a masculine card needs some hardware on it, but this one is perfect just as it stands. And anyone of the Totally Tools would work on the card - just pick your favorite from the set and go with it. Just remember to carefully ink the stamp so none of the sentiment shows up with it for this idea. Of course, you could always change the idea and use the sentiment that is with the stamp - your choice of course!
I guess that's the tip of the day - you don't always have to use all of the stamp. Ink only the portions that you want to use. The little Stampin' Spots are just perfect for seeing what you're inking and getting ink only where you want it.
Have an awesome Friday! Thanks for stopping by. Grand-baby updates will be posted when I know something! (Can you tell I'm excited???)

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Wedding Circles

Just in case you're wondering, and even if you don't care at all, I feel a great need to keep everyone up to date on the baby status. And no, as I sit here writing this, le grand-bebe' has not made an appearance yet. We thought that last night was going to be the arrival, but contractions stopped and baby-momma was sent back home from the hospital. Soooo... the wait continues. Ok, with that out of the way, let's get down to business!

This was my week devoted to regular stamping classes. Since I gave you a sneak peak of one of the projects already, it's time to share another one. For this card, the ladies had a choice of using either a wedding or graduation sentiment depending on what they would need. I made the class sample using a wedding sentiment. Way back at last year's convention, I received a swap similar to this idea. (Yes, I just had to make some changes!!) I thought it was very elegant and would like to give the creator credit for it, but it was unsigned. Sorry!

Stamps: Circle Circus and God Bless II (retired)
Cardstock: Elegant Eggplant and Whisper White
Ink: Elegant Eggplant
Accessories: Big Shot with Finial Press Embossing Folder, 1" Circle Punch, Modern Label Punch, White Organza Ribbon

Now don't you agree with me that it's a very classy card? And of course, you can just change up the main color of the card and ink and it will look so very different. It was seeing this card that convinced me I needed this stamp set!

Hope you enjoy this idea and put it to good use yourself. Thanks for taking time out to stop by today. And yes, we're still waiting for the arrival of the baby!!! When he's finally hear, I'll be sure to let you know! LOL As if you could stop me from shouting it from the rooftops!!

Ok, have a great day!

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Bouquet Bunch Again

Hope you're not getting tired of me using this set yet. I just love these little images and the different ways they can be brought together. I had started on this card when I got a call from church about someone passing away. So I changed plans for this card and turned it into a sympathy card. Why is it I never have one when I need it???
I had started out a bit brighter using fall colors, then decided to tone it down a bit and switched the background card to Kraft which is so much more understated. I got my left-over Tangerine Tango out to use on this card. Don't you love the look of autumn that's so easy to achieve with watercoloring the leaves with all those warm, earth-toned colors?
Stamps: Bouquet Bunch and Teeny Tiny Wishes
Cardstock: Kraft, Old Olive, So Saffron, Tangerine Tango, and Very Vanilla
Ink: Stazon Jet Black, Old Olive and Watercolor Pencils
Accessories: AquaPainter, Pinking Hearts Border Punch, Word Window Punch, Modern Label Punch, Chocolate Satin Ribbon, Flower Brads, Piercing Tool and Mat Pack, Sponge quarter, and Dimensionals
Maybe I should make a few more of these cards while I have everything scattered over my work table. Or does that jinx things and there'll be more funerals????? Anyway, I love playing around with the colors on the planter and leaves. I must be reverting back to kindergarten and all that coloring in the lines again. hmmm, maybe I can squeeze in a little afternoon nap while I'm at it? lol
Thanks for having a look-see today. Leave me a comment so I'll know you've stopped by. Make sure you find some time to stamp today.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Another Bouquet Bunch Idea

Well, that same stamp set was sitting on my work table today, so what else could I do? Put it away? Never!! I just had to keep using it! Right? Besides, it's new - I have to play with it!! So that's exactly what I did...

The first one I did (previous post) was really, really bright. So this next one is much more understated and calming. With the new color renovations getting geared up at Stampin' Up!, I thought it would be a good time to dig out the returning In Colors I have left. When I pulled out the Wild Wasabi packet of cardstock, I noticed a partially stamped piece just waiting for me to use. Sometimes when I'm working on a project and it's just not coming together, I'll take the odds and ends pieces and throw them back in the original color packets and forget about them til later. Well, it might be well over a year later, but now was the time to use it! Here's what I came up with...
As you can see, this is a melding of old and new - the Wild Wasabi cardstock and diamond pattern stamped on the back-folded flap are old and the image and layered cardstock is new. I just love being able to use up an old scrap that I've saved and turn it into something new again!!
Stamps: Bouquet Bunch and Teeny Tiny Wishes with a retired set (diamond pattern) that I don't know the name
Cardstock: Wild Wasabi, Soft Suede, and Very Vanilla
Ink: Stazon Jet Black, Bashful Blue
Accessories: Watercolor Wonder Crayons, AquaPainter, Vanilla Grosgrain Ribbon, Scallop Circle Punch (used as stencil for clouds), Sponge quarters, and Dimensionals
I've got some birthdays coming up for some men in my life and think this just might be useful! For me, it's always much more difficult to make masculine cards, but I don't know why. And then when I finally get them done, I don't understand what the struggle was all about anyway. Sheesh!! Sometimes I think I need my head examined! But at least I got another one ready to go in the mail. Now how many more do I need???
Thanks for stopping by today. Hope you're having a great week so far...

Monday, May 3, 2010

Challenge with Bouquet Bunch

Hey, it's Monday already! How did that happen? I know I'm a bit late (again!) for the Stamping 411 Saturday Challenge, but at least I'm working on it! As usual, the ladies came up with a great sketch with nice, clean lines. And that's just what I like. So here we go...
After several rainy, overcast days, the weather today was gorgeous and sunshiney! It made me happy to be alive and I just had to spend some time outside! So when I finally settled down to stamp something for the challenge, I think I still had a residue of sunbeams in my eyes, so the card came out a bit bright and sunny looking. Take a couple of oranges and throw in some yellow, and you really get bright! But that just makes it 'really cheerful' in my book!!
Stamps: Bouquet Bunch and Sincere Salutations
Cardstock: Pumpkin Pie, So Saffron, Tangerine Tango, Certainly Celery, and Whisper White cardstock with So Saffron Patterns Designer Series Paper
Ink: Stazon Jet Black, So Saffron, Summer Sun, Tangerine Tango, Certainly Celery
Accessories: Aqua Painter, Black Gingham Ribbon, Sponge Quarter, and Dimensionals
Don't you think this card would cheer up anybody when they received it in the mail? Especially if they were dealing with one of those pesky 'milestone' birthdays. You always need just a bit more cheeriness when you realized you've somehow gotten another year older, don'cha think???
Have a super week, and make sure you find time to get a bit of stamping done. It's good for the spirit!! Hugs,