Sunday, June 27, 2010

Stormy Sunday

This has been quite a month around here. Today we had our 3rd tornado watch for the month. Quite incredible. Thank God that the storms went farther south from us and we just got rain and high winds. Another branch came down today. That's one way of thinning out the dying branches from our maple tree. I just feel so bad for the families 1/2 hour south of us that have gotten slammed each time. Don't know what's going on with the weather this summer, but I do know it's been really intense!

Since it's been so stormy, I thought today would be a good day to share a card that seems very serene. This should combat all that wildness outside! Does the card look familiar? It should because it's showcased on the front cover of the Summer Mini. My Hostess Club ladies wanted to recreate the card, so we did our best to come up with something similar. They all were very happy with the results and are actually going to make more of them!

Stamps: Elements of Style, Charming
Cardstock: Whisper White, Melon Mambo, Bashful Blue, and Presto Patterns Specialty Designer Paper
Ink: Sahara Sand, Basic Brown (retired), Melon Mambo, Old Olive, Bashful Blue
Accessories: Aqua Painter, Mostly Vintage Stencil, Sponge quarter, Vanilla Hodge Podge Hardware, Pretties Kit (retired), Small Oval Punch, Butterfly Punch, Distressing Tool, Log Cabin and Vanilla Shimmer Smooch Spritzes, Bashful Blue Mini Brads, Bashful Blue Taffeta Ribbon, white crochet cotton, and Dimensionals.

hmmm... I think I remembered all the tools and accessories we used to make this card. Seems like we had a huge pile of 'stuff' on the table when we were finished. But it really did turn out lovely, so it was worth all the time and effort that went into it! The stencil sponged on the background is what really pulls it all together. It's just a soft filler, but how cool.
And did you notice where the Charming set was used? It's that little piece of cardstock tucked in behind the ripped edge on the top. I couldn't figure out what was actually used on the original, so we improvised a bit. Some of the ladies also took a sliver of those words and tucked it under the torn bottom corner too. By that time I had already stopped working on my card, but they were on a roll and continued playing with it til they were happy. That's what I call real dedication! Or maybe it's really obsessiveness!! Either way, we all had fun making this card.

Hope you enjoy it and find time to create (or recreate!) something today too!

Saturday, June 26, 2010

Saturday Challenge

Hey it's Saturday, so there's a new Stamping 411 Sketch Challenge going on here. I truly cannot believe I'm actually checking it out, and stamping it on time!!! Woo Hoo!! I've been so behind the times lately that I've missed out on many of them. If you find the time today (or even later on in the week), why not give their challenge a try? The 411 ladies all have so much talent and come up with easily workable sketches that really do make up into lovely cards. Give them a try!
Since I've been working on designing cards for my ladies at church to make for our soldiers, my thoughts have been geared towards Halloween and Thanksgiving. I know, that's so far in advance I'm having a really, really hard time thinking pumpkins and ghosts! I got out one of my favorite sets for Thanksgiving though, and thought I could use it for today's sketch. Hope you like the finished product....
Stamps: Autumn Harvest
Cardstock: Very Vanilla, Pumpkin Pie, and Old Olive
Ink: Basic Brown, Pumpkin Pie, Old Olive, and (the very new) Cajun Craze pads, and Chocolate Chip Marker
Accessories: Big Shot with Square Lattice Embossing Folder, Aqua Painter, Vintage Brads, Old Olive 1 1/4" Striped Grosgrain Ribbon, Log Cabin Smooch Spritz, Color Spritzer Tool, and Dimensionals

Ok, if you've checked out the sketch already you know that I didn't follow it exactly. After I had all the components together, I just didn't like the ribbon going across the card, soooo.... Yeah, I improvised just a bit. I tried several different things, but nothing worked for me until I hit upon the ribbon loop. And then I thought it needed the brads to anchor it. So, there goes another opportunity to follow a sketch that I've blown. It seems to be a disease with me - I just can't do a sketch or case another card exactly!
On another note, does anyone have any suggestions on using the Log Cabin Smooch Spritz? It sprayed so blotchy I was happy to cover most of it with the main image. Help!! What am I doing wrong with it???? I turned to the Color Spritzer Tool and a marker to add the speckles onto the main image because I didn't want the whole thing blotched with the dark spray. I know there has to be a trick to this, but I haven't found it yet. If anyone knows, please share with me and I'll pass on the info here. TIA
Have a happy stampin' day!

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Black Magic

No, not the spooky kind that's all the rage right now. This is the fun kind that you do with stamps, white ink, and colored pencils. I've been wanting to try this ever since I first saw it. But life sort of gets in the way and the idea got relegated to the back burner and semi-forgotten. It was a pleasant surprise when Michelle Glennie had this idea for our shoebox swap on Saturday. Yippee - I was finally going to give this idea a try!
It was fun seeing everyone's cards when we were done because we each had used a different combination of colored pencils for our flowers, so each one was lovely, but also different! Now that's right up my alley - the same but different!! lol
Stamps: Greenhouse Garden, and Very Vintage Jumbo Wheel
Cardstock: Basic Gray, Basic Black, and Whisper White
Ink: Basic Gray (for wheel) and White Craft pad, Basic Black marker
Accessories: Heat Tool, Assorted Colored Pencils, White Gel Pen, and White Taffeta Ribbon
I love how she designed the card with the Very Vintage wheel as a counterpoint to the very bold flowers. Very interesting! And don't those flowers just pop! off the paper? So easy but very dramatic, dahling! It was fun blending the different colors of pencil on the white ink to get the color you want. And the wow factor when you overstamp your colored flower with the white-inked detail stamp is just tooooo coooool! Great job in coming up with this design Michelle. I definitely enjoyed making this card!
And speaking of enjoying, her hubby made some cute, little quiches for us. They were yummy and he's a real sweetie for doing that for us!!! Don't you just love guys that cook?
Ok, on with the day. Hope you find time to enjoy the day and get out those stamps - they need a little lovin' today!

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

For all you do....

As promised, I have another card from our shoebox swap last Saturday. This little beauty was designed by Shannon Wahoski, another demonstrator, but not one of my downline. Sure wish she was though. She brings a bit of sunshine along with her wherever she goes, and is just so much fun to be around. So glad she's a part of our group whenever she can be!
Her card was so totally opposite from the card I shared earlier from Phyllis which was much softer and feminine. Shannon's card is bold and precise, yet fun and sort of whimsical. Can you see what I mean?

Stamps: For All You Do

Cardstock: Basic Gray, Basic Black, Whisper White, and Melon Mambo

Ink: Basic Black

Accessories: 1 3/8" Square Punch, Paper Snips, Clear Rhinestone Brads, and Dimensionals

I have to admit here that Shannon's original looked better than mine. I'm not sure why I was having such a hard time getting a really solid black look to my images, but for the life of me they all turned out a bit splotchy. Some I turned over and tried again, but the result was the same. I guess I need to work on my stamping techniques! LOL

And while I'm confessing here, she didn't use a Dimensional under her flowers either. I just have this need to add some dimension to my cards. Sorry Shannon, I just couldn't help myself! LOL There you have it. Now you know that I just can't leave someone else's design alone! It's a mad compulsion with me and I don't think there's a cure. Woe is me!! hmmmm.... Or maybe not - maybe this is just a part of my fascination with stamping. It's so easy to add your own little tweak to someone else's great idea! Thus it's easy for anyone to feel creative and add their own bit of spice.

So, go out and spice up your world today! Find an idea you really like from someone and sprinkle just a bit of spice to it (or maybe a whole lot!) and have some fun!!


Monday, June 21, 2010

Sneak Peak Beauty

Morning all! Hope you had a great weekend and celebrated your dad. Since mine diedquite a number of years ago, I just remembered all the wonderful traits he had and thanked God that he had given me such a godly man for my father. Then I celebrated my husband and son-in-law who is a new dad. In fact, I thought I'd share with you a pic of the new daddy and baby. Wouldn't you love to see that?
Isn't this just precious? It looks like there is already a great bond between father and son. He just adores that little guy and is so willing to help take care of him. (Well, not so much a 2 and 3 o'clock in the morning.)
Carson is so blessed to have parents who love him so much and care about his every need. Looking at them reminds me about how much our Father God loves each one of us. Then I'm overwhelmed with thankfulness.
Ok, I know you didn't stop by to hear me get all mushy on you, did you? But who can resist a cute little baby face like that??? Certainly not I! Oh, grandma is going to be such a push-over!! lol
Ok, on to the lovely card I have to share today. This was designed by my downline Phyllis Dahlstrom who always designs the loveliest cards for our swaps! I love the use of pink and brown she used - so soft, yet substantial.
Stamps: new Level 1 Hostess set 'Because I Care'
Cardstock: Early Espresso, Pink Pirouette, and Whisper White
Ink: Pink Pirouette, Always Artichoke, and Stazon Brown (non SU!)pads, So Saffron marker
Accessories: Big Shot and Vintage Wallpaper Embossing Folder, AquaPainter, Scallop Trim Border Punch, Large Oval Punch, Pink Satin Ribbon, and Dimensionals.
Altogether a very lovely combination of color and layout. And don't you just love the new Hostess stamp set? All I can say about it is "Wow!" Well, actually I can say alot more, and I probably will over the coming months. There is something about these line-art stamps that just draw me to them and I can't wait to start coloring. Stampin' Up! really does make some simply fabulous stamps, and this is one of them!
Well, I just previewed what I'd been writing today, and the preview is all askew. It looks right when I'm typing, but the spacing is all wrong in the preview. Don't know what's going on with that, but I'm going to try to publish anyway. Hope it comes through ok, cuz my hubby is out of town and won't be able to help me fix it. As it is, the sight has been messed up the last week or so and we can't figure out how to get the sidebar up where it belongs. Why is this blog going spastic all of a sudden? Am I going to have to trash it and start all over??? Oh, I sincerely hope not! Stay tuned to see what happens next....
Frustratingly yours,

Friday, June 18, 2010

Friends Never Fade

Tomorrow is going to be fun. Some of us are meeting on Saturday for a small shoebox swap. There's only 4-5 of us that will be in attendance, but we'll have fun anyway. And there's food involved so you know it'll be fun. Thought I'd share with you what my card is going to be. The parameters of the swap were simple - use new products that we could pre-order from the new Catalog. And of course, all of us had ordered a few items that we could use! lol I can't wait to see what the others came with for their ideas!

Stamps: Friends Never Fade and Thank You Kindly
Cardstock: Riding Hood Red, Marina Mist, Certainly Celery, and Whisper White
Ink: Riding Hood Red, Marina Mist, and Basic Black
Accesssories: Scallop Border Punch, Scallop Square Punch, 1 1/4" Square Punch, Certainly Celery Satin Ribbon and Dimensionals

I'm really happy with this color combination and layout. Hope the ladies enjoy making their cards. It really isn't very hard to make, but I like the simpler look myself.

Well, I've worked hard today trying to sort out all my old retired stamps and get my cardstock organized. I can't believe how hard it is trying to remember which color family the different colors belong in. Yikes! How many months before I get it down right?! And don't get me started about where I stashed those mini catalog sets that are now in the catalog! I know they're around here somewhere!! Oh well, keep at it and I'll get done sooner or later. And I'll have to keep reminding myself what is current and which color is what color family - or something like that!

Hope you've got some wonderful plans for the weekend. Me, after the shoebox swap, I've got more organizing to do - all the ink pads, markers, ribbons, and other accessories!! Oh My Goodness!! Should keep me busy for quite awhile.

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Funky Frog

Playing around with punches is so much fun. I really am in awe of the creative talent out there that can look at a couple punches and see something totally different. While I only surf other blogs trolling for a punchy idea that I can fiddle around with and have fun. Quite awhile back, I saw a cute frog that Becky Jenson had made. Just darling! So I played with her idea and made my own funky frog. Isn't he funny looking?! But he's not too hard to make at all. give it a try...

Stamps: Kind & Caring Thoughts, Inspired by Nature, and
Teeny Tiny Wishes
Cardstock: Mellow Moss, Not Quite Navy, Whisper White, Old Olive, Basic Black, and Real Red
Ink: Basic Black, Mellow Moss and Old Olive ink pads, Basic Black marker
Accessories: punches- Wide Oval, Large Oval, Boho Blossom, Trio Flower, 1 3/4" Circle, 1 3/8" Circle, 3/4" Circle, 1/2" Circle, 1/4" Circle, Heart to Heart, and Modern Label

I can't believe how many punches were used to make this little guy! When he was finished, almost half of my many punches were sitting on the work table! How crazy is that! But he was worth it though, wasn't he?

If I ever make another one of these, I think I'll use some really big googly eyes instead of the black and white cardstock. That would make him just too cute! Can you just imagine opening an envelope and pulling him out with those huge eyes wiggling around? Instant giggles for sure. Think I need to run out to the store to pick some up now that I've been thinking about it. It's making me laugh just thinking about it!!!

Hope you are having a wonderful week. Don't forget Father's Day is coming up this Sunday. Hope it's a nice day for a BBQ. I'm off to get some work done (or anything done for that matter) after babysitting today.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Ice Cream Scoops

First off, I want to apologize for being AWOL lately. It's funny how much difference a little baby can make - even when it doesn't even live in your house! Seems like all my free time lately has been spent with our daughter and grandson either here or at her house. And when they're here I get about as much done as when I'm gone. Go figure! Somehow I've got to figure how to get back on track or I might as well just give up any hope of getting anything done again for a good long while. How did I manage when my own kids were babies and I did craft shows and taught classes on a regular basis??? Okay, time to shape up and start to prioritize my time. No more talking for hours with my daughter while staring into the face of the cutest lil baby around. No more talking to my son (who is in Louisianna working on the oil spill) on the phone for two hours in the evening or IM for an hour at a time throughout the day. Time to settle down and get back to work! So there!! That's the plan. We'll see how long it lasts! That said, let's get down to business...
When I first saw the Summer Mini Catalog, one of the stamp sets that just jumped out at me was Sweet Scoops. I just had to have it and there was an idea just waiting to get on paper when it arrived. My daughter and I had made a little side trip the other day to Baskin Robbins Ice Cream Shop and had so much fun splurging on some yummy ice cream Hence this card was born. Her favorite has always been strawberry and mine is chocolate - mmmmm.
Stamps: Sweet Scoops and Embrace Life
Cardstock: Pink Pirourette, Close to Cocoa, and Whisper White
Ink: Creamy Caramel, Regal Rose, Chocolate Chip Classic Pads, Very Vanilla Craft Pad, Chocolate Chip, Real Red and Old Olive Markers
Accessories: Big Shot with Square Lattice Embossing Folder, Stamp-a-ma-jig, Linen Thead, Sponge Dauber, and Dimensionals
Whatever will I use to ink up the cones once Creamy Caramel is retired?? It's just the perfect color for those ice cream comes. Maybe the new Crumb Cake ink will work. hmm... Maybe I need to give that color a try. Anyway, doesn't this look just about good enough to eat? Makes me want to go get a little ice cream snack right now.
And isn't the chocolate swirl soft-serve just the cutest? After stamping the swirl with Vanilla Craft ink, I drew on the chocolate swirl with a marker. Fun!
Hope you enjoyed this sweet treat. And thank you so much for checking back to see if I was still here. I promise I'll try to be more consistent again. There's so much I want to stamp and share with you, that I've really got to get going again! Have a wonderful week and thanks for stopping by. I really appreciate any comments you might leave. :-)

Monday, June 7, 2010

Truly Elegant Elements of Style

I usually try to come up with my own ideas to share with you here, but sometimes I see something that just speaks to me. Sometimes it's the colors, sometimes the layout, and sometimes it's the whole package that just draws me in and won't let go. Barb Mullikin had such a card. I fell in love with it and had to make it my own. After drooling over her lovely creation, I got out my stamps and supplies and made my own. As usual, it didn't turn out like hers, but I'm still mighty happy with my results!
Stamps: Elements of Style
Cardstock: Rich Razzleberry, Elegant Eggplant, Certainly Celery, Whisper White
Ink: Stazon Jet Black, Rich Razzleberry, Elegant Eggplant, Crushed Curry, Certainly Celery
Accessories: Scallop Trim Border Punch, Double Rectangle Punch, Certainly Celery Satin Ribbon, Aqua Painter, Vanilla Smooch Spritz
Didn't I tell you it was very elegant and gorgeous? For some reason I can never get the shimmer to show up nicely in my pictures, so you'll have to take my word that it is stunning! And no, I'm not exaggerating either!!! lol For those of you lucky people that take classes with me, this will be one of your projects this month. Aren't you happy you'll get to make your own?!
Did you go check out Barb's card? Hope you enjoyed my version too, and will try to make your own version of mine. I'd love to see what you come up with - we'll just keep making changes to her idea until we come up with something totally different. I suppose that's what happens most of the time anyway.
Looking forward to seeing all my class people this week! It's always fun reconnecting with friends and hearing about what they've been doing. Throw in some creative stamping and you're sure to have a great time! Wish you could be here too.....

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Playing with Punched Posies

Hey there - thanks for stopping by today! Late last night I was playing around with the new Hostess set called Punched Posies. I had a cool idea in my head, but I was having a hard time getting it down on paper. Ever have that problem??? I had seen something somewhere with Rich Razzleberry cardstock as a base for the set several days ago and it had stuck in my mind. Unfortunately I didn't bookmark it, so I couldn't CASE it. :( Maybe that's why I was having such a problem - I was trying to recreate something that I couldn't quite remember. Well, whatever the reason, here's what I ended up with...

Stamps: Punched Posies
Cardstock: Rich Razzleberry, Old Olive, Whisper White
Ink: Rich Razzleberry, Melon Mambo, Old Olive
Accessories: Itty Bitty Shapes Punch, Bitty Buttons, Big Shot with Scallop Square Die, Scallop Circle Punch, contraband narrow organdy ribbon, Mini Glue Dots, and Dimensionals

Somehow, no matter how I shifted the components around, I just wasn't happy with the looks. I'm not sure what exactly I'm not happy with, but it just bugs me for some reason. Any input here would be greatly appreciated...

Since I couldn't get the other one the way I wanted, I just started all over again. Kind of the same layout, but the background color changed
and a few more embellishments were used.

Stamps: Punched Posies
Cardstock: Melon Mambo, Whisper White, and Crushed Curry
Ink: Melon Mambo, Rich Razzleberry, Old Olive
Accessories: Big Shot with Scallop Square Die and Perfect Pindot Embossing Folder, Scallop Circle Punch, Itty Bitty Shapes punch, Fire Round Rhinestone Brads (pink), Silver Mini Brads, and Dimensionals

I'm much happier with this version. Looking at the two of them together, I think I tend to appreciate the softer, brighter colors instead of the darker. It just looks friendlier to me. Does that make sense?? Even just the addition of lighter flower centers makes it look better. Either way, this stamp set is going to need a little more playtime to come up with something I really like. But that's not going to be today. I have to get back to planning cards for classes next week. Hope that goes better than these card!! lol

Take care and find something to stamp today. Sometimes it's frustrating, but most times it's very inspiring and rewarding. The trick is to keep it the latter and not the former.

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Card Making Bonanza

Wow, the ladies from church really outdid themselves last night! The first Tuesday of the month we get together to make cards to send to our soldiers. All told, they totally finished and packed 84 cards! That was 8 ladies, making 84 cards, in 1 1/2 hours. Over 10 cards per lady!! woo hoo!! There were also another 20 that were only half made because I slipped up. Can you imagine that I forgot the stamp for the main image?? Yeah, neither could I! (blushing) Oh well, nobody ever said I was perfect, and I really prove that on a regular basis, don't I? lol

Anyway, I thought you'd like to get an idea of the type of card we made last night. This one used a designer paper from way back when. I've got stashes of retired papers that haven't seen the light of day in a few (make that lots of) years. So instead of purchasing more new to use, I figured it was time to start utilizing what I already owned. Just using up my stash would probably take a full two years at least. Oh heavens!! Did I really admit to that??? Shhh - don't tell anybody. ok? Anyway.....

Stamps: For A Friend (retired)
Cardstock: More Mustard, Elegant Eggplant, Very Vanilla, and an un-named designer series paper that retired more than 7 years ago
Ink: Basic Black, More Mustard, Elegant Eggplant
Accessories: Aqua Painter, More Mustard Narrow Grosgrain Ribbon, Vanilla Shimmer Smooch Spritz, and Dimensionals

It's a very straight-forward card to make. Nothing spectacular, but nice enough I hope. By the way, it's funny how hard it is to work with color combos and papers that you haven't used in quite awhile. The colors just seemed odd together since they weren't current. Isn't it interesting how certain color combos go in and out of style? Seems to me if you like them, you'd use them always instead of packing them away for the future. So that's what I'm doing. I'm bringing color combos and retired designer papers back into the light of day. (and doing a little 'spring cleaning' on my paper stash while I'm at it!)

Have a wonderful week. Have you stamped today?