Monday, August 31, 2009

Happy Autumn

Okay, so it's not quite autumn yet, but it's just around the corner, so it's time for some more fall-themed creations! This card features lots of fun images from the new Fall Harvest set from the All Things Considered line over at Cornish Heritage Farms. I stamped the pumpkin label image in brown and colored in bits and pieces with Copics. Same for the crow image - not a whole lot of coloring, just enough to highlight it. To make the background paper, I stamped the oak leaf image repeatedly in orange ink. I used a wide pumpkin-colored ribbon as an accent, and tied it with rafia and a little tag made from another stamp from the set. The ribbon is from a ribbon factory outlet in East Stroudsburg, PA. What a fun place that is! I never miss a chance to go whenever I travel back up North. It's fun to raid lots of different places on a search for stuff to feed my addiction! :) Hope the weather is cool and crisp where you are; well, if ya like that sort of thing! :)

-All stamps from CHF Fall Harvest (ATC line) available Sept. 1

-Versafine in Vintage Sepia and Onyx Black
-Ranger Distress Ink in Brushed Corduroy and Spiced Marmalade

-Making Memories brads
-Rafia (Rhyne)
-Wide ribbon (factory outlet stash!)

Sunday, August 30, 2009

Bluebird and Apples

Another little peek at a new set that will be released on September 1 by Cornish Heritage Farms. This one is called "Can It" and is from their All Things Considered (ATC) line. The main image actually uses two stamps from the set - the vintage apple label and the apple basket with the bluebird. (Okay, I don't KNOW that it's a bluebird, but as we established in a previous post, if I color the bird blue and call it a bluebird, then that counts, right? LOL!! You could just as easily color it brown and red and call it a robin, *wink*.) Anyway, I stamped the images close to each other so that they looked like a single image, then colored them with Copics. For the other panel I used the Newspaper Ads Scrapblock from CHF. I liked the way both of these panels had that same rising sun motif in them (you may have to click on the photo to get an up-close peek at that - I know, it's a tiny little sun... am I obsessive or what LOL!). The patterned paper on the bottom is from Basic Grey's June Bug 6x6 tablet. I made the apple paper by repeatedly stamping the little apple from the School Primer set (ATC Collection from CHF), and coloring with Copics. Just a fun little card for anytime.

Apple recipe:
-Can It and School Primer from the ATC Collection at Cornish Heritage Farms
-Newspaper Ads Scrapblock from CHF

-Memento Tuxedo Black
-Anita's Taupe
-Ranger Distress Ink Vintage Photo

-Simply Smooth White and Vanilla cardstock from CHF
-Bazzill Basics and Textured cardstocks
-Basic Grey June Bug Collection

-Copic markers
-A "recycled" ribbon from a gift

Saturday, August 29, 2009

A Spooky Sneak Peek

Out for Publication

Stamp It! Cards, on sale January 19, 2010

As some of you may know, I start as a design team member with Cornish Heritage Farms in September. Well... several days ago I got the thrill of receiving a big ol' box of brand new rubber in the mail!! Aaaah, nuthin' like it, LOL!! Anyway, I have been given the go-ahead to start with some sneak peeks, and this adorable little spooky owl is one of them!!! She is Owl Silhouette, and she's the Stamp of the Month for September.

I stamped this little spookster on a piece of "Citrus" paper from Basic Grey's Ambrosia line... I will be using this paper a lot this Halloween, it's got such wonderful variations in color. I also used some Memory Box patterned paper, a Jenni Bowlin calendar card, and some ribbon, twine, bling, button, and hemp cord (see supply list for the details). What a fun image this was to work with! I'll be playing some more in the coming days, so watch for some more peeks (sneaky and otherwise :)). Have a great Saturday!

-Owl Silhouette September Stamp of the Month, Cornish Heritage Farms

-Bazzill Basics cardstock
-Basic Grey Ambrosia line in "Citrus"
-Memory Box Twilight 6x6 paper collection

-StazOn Jet Black
-Ranger Distress Ink in Spiced Marmalade

-Jenni Bowlin Studio Mini Calendar Card Set
-Kaiser rhinestones
-Ribbon from A.C. Moore
-Hemp cord, Darice
-Kaiser Rhinestones

Gingersnap Creations Design Team

You may have noticed the Gingersnap Creations Member logo in my sidebar for the last several weeks. I was so excited when I discovered this wonderful challenge blog, created by the team of Ali Manning and Sharon Briss. Not only are these two ladies extraordinarily talented, but they share their talents and resources through detailed tutorials, a wonderfully organized yahoo group with extensive lists of sources, fun challenges that actually run long enough for even ME to be able to participate in time (LOL!!), and of course, lots of beautiful and inspiring artwork. And the unofficial motto over there... "no stress." Gotta love THAT! Well.... I was so impressed by Gingersnap Creations that when the call came out, I applied for a design team position, and guess what? They have graciously accepted me onto the team for the current 6-month term (didn't see that one coming, did ya?). But that's not the half of it.... look closely at that gossip mag above, and you will see not just me, but nine amazingly talented ladies whose company I am truly honored to be in! (Sharon put that together.... see, I told you she was talented :).) So hop on over to Gingersnap Creations, and then maybe you'd like to take a tour of these gals' blogs. Here's a list, you won't be sorry you visited! Have a wonderful night, and I will have a little sneaky peeky of something for you very soon.....

The Creative Founders:
Alison Manning
Sharon Briss

The New Design Team:
Debby Boltman
Jo Capper-Sandon
Elina Koutsouradi
Laura Liddell
Hels Sheridan
Lynn Stevens (contributing artist)
Erika Taylor
Joanne Wardle
Paula Whittaker

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Vintage Bluebird ATCs

A tiny little piece for you today. I was making my ATCs yesterday for my club swap tonight and wanted to go vintage and blue. Our "theme" was to use paint somewhere on our cards, so here's what I did. I covered a piece of cardstock entirely with Ranger's Distress Crackle Paint in Picket Fence, and set it aside to let it dry. Now, if you try this, DON'T BE ALARMED when you come back and find your cardstock all curled up! It's okay - this paint is wonderfully bendable when dry, and won't flake off no matter how much you bend it to make it flat. I cut out a bunch of ovals using my old Creative Memories oval cutters. After that, I stamped the Tree Swallows Silhouette image from Cornish Heritage Farms with StazOn ink in Midnight Blue. (Okay, so technically they're not bluebirds, but if I stamp them in blue and call them bluebirds, then they're bluebirds! Right? Right? LOL!) I then distressed the image with Ranger Distress Inks in Antique Linen and Faded Jeans. For the card base, I used some Bazzill cardstock, some beautiful K and Company patterned paper from the Blue Awning line, and some pages from a vintage French school reader that I found in an antique store. I adhered the image, then had a little fun with some copper embossing powder. I took my Versamark pen and dabbled the edges of the card, then heat embossed with the copper. I was going for a worn gilded look.

Something was missing, though. I slept on it, waiting for inspiration to strike. Luckily, I got up this morning and saw Julia's Ways to Use It Challenge over on SCS. It came to me....add MORE vintage ephemera!! So I got out my vintage buttons and some tiny, rusted vintage keys (plus some newer key charms), and tied them on with some hemp cord. I think that's just what they needed. A tiny dot of K and Company craft glue keeps that knot from untying. I hope the ladies in my group like it tonight. :) Have a wonderful day!

Monday, August 24, 2009

Winter Wonderland by Candlelight

I had time to play along with another Winter Wonderland Challenge this week. The theme is "By Candlelight," and I immediately thought of this adorable image from Cornish Heritage Farms' Night Before Christmas set. So, I made another pennant to go with my growing collection. For this one, I colored the image with Copics, then cut it out and bordered it using the Nestabilities Labels One die. I also used Copics to color a lantern from a set of Tattered Angels glimmer chips - it took the color pretty well, I think. The papers are from Basic Grey and Bo Bunny. Some painted grungeboard, Prima flowers, and SU! Dazzling Diamonds finish it up.

Hope you're having a great week! I'll be back soon with some more yummy Cornish Heritage Farms images!

Friday, August 21, 2009

Rainbow Happiness

The theme for the month of August over at Gingersnap Creations is "Happiness," and the most recent challenge is "Rainbow." I figured I can check them both off my list with this card, LOL!! It's simply stamping, nuthin' else. I tried to embellish with all manner of goodies, but the thing just wanted to stay clean and simple, so I left it.

Images and sentiment are from Close to My Heart. Papers are Cosmo Cricket and My Mind's Eye. Inks are from Stampin' Up!, Colorbox, and Memento.

Hope your day is happy!

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Just {Bee}cause

Wouldn't it be wonderful if this were all that was on your "Honey Do List"? LOL! A while back, I was lucky enough to win Cornish Heritage Farms' Sweet Bee set from Julia Stainton's blog (thanks, Julia!). I've been wanting to make a card with this "Honey Do List" stamp for a while now, just didn't get around to it. Well, sometimes procrastination pays off! I was in Michael's the other day and spied this great paper line from Deja Views that has bees, honeycombs, dandelions... all perfect to go with this stamp set. I think this would be a great card for the dad of the house.. on his birthday, father's day, to kick off a vacation... just bee-cause.

I used cardstock from an American Traditional Designs paper pad (the colors matched the Deja Views papers perfectly - go figure). The Deja Views background paper has flourishes and a honeycomb pattern (don't know if you can quite see it), and I also used one with a stripe of little bees going across it. I stamped the bee image from Sweet Bee multiple times, then punched them out using Creative Memories' Hexagon punch. I colored all the images with Copics. The ribbon is from Stampin' Up! in Blue Bayou, which is retired :(. All you SU! demonstrators out there - please please please lobby to bring back Blue Bayou, Baja Breeze, Kiwi Kiss, and Riding Hood Red. I'm beggin' :). For now, I'll just have to hoard some, I guess LOL!

Thanks for looking and have a great day - just {bee}cause!

Sunday, August 16, 2009

A Quick Little Blog Candy Alert

Well, here's one I just had to enter, and pass along. A chance to win at least 5 stamps sets (and possibly more, depending on participation) is on the "priscillastyles" blog, home of the Midnight Madness Sketch Challenge. Just to note, this one is only open to people with blogs. The contest runs through September 18 (so you have time to enter a sketch challenge, and add to your potential winnings). Good luck!

Friday, August 14, 2009

My Exciting News, Plus Some Christmas Gift Tags

I received the most exciting news yesterday.... I won the Cornish Heritage Farms Summer Stamp Star Design Challenge!! I just love this company's stamps, and had great fun participating in the five weeks of challenges that comprised the contest. So I was thrilled when Becky Olsen emailed me that I had won, and would be receiving their September releases in the mail. But the excitement didn't stop there... Becky actually called and asked me to join their design team. I was so thrilled, I couldn't get a single thing done for the rest of the day. Seriously. I have never been on a design team before (heck, never won a contest before!), so I was excited, nervous, thankful, honored... and pinching myself to see if I was going to wake up from a dream. But no, it's real, and I can't wait to start bringing you the latest and greatest rubber stamp creations from Cornish Heritage Farms!

So how about a little Christmas in August with a recently released Cornish Heritage Farms set called Night Before Christmas? It's a wonderful set from their Rummage Bin line that features some stamps that are perfect for making gift tags. Now, there are several ways to approach a little project such as this, and I was reminded of one of my favorite scrapbooking magazines, Simple Scrapbooks. Sadly, this magazine is no longer being published, but I have kept several issues as reference. Each issue, they had a feature called "Step It Up," where they showed you three options for making a scrapbook layout. Option 1 used only the "Essentials" - the very basic minimum you would need to produce a page or two. Option 2 was called "Add Product" - where if you had a little extra time and product, you took your essentials but added a few embellishments for more interest. Finally, Option 3 was "Add Time and Technique." This was where you could hole up in your craft room, dig out lots of fun things from your stash, and go to town on a seriously "stepped up" layout.

So let's do the same thing with some Christmas gift tags, shall we? Let's say it's very late on Christmas Eve (so late, in fact, it might even qualify as Christmas morning). You have forgotten to buy (or make) gift tags. No worries! Get out a sheet of ivory cardstock, some red and/or green ink, some red or green ribbon from your stash, a hole punch, and your Night Before Christmas stamp set. Cut your 8 1/2 by 11 inch cardstock in half width-wise (so you have two pieces that are 5 1/2 inches long and 8 1/2 inches wide), then cut 2-inch strips going across, so that you have 8 tags that are 2 inches by 5 1/2 inches. Now get out your red and green inks, and stamp the cute little images I have shown here. You can use the little banner space in each image to stamp one of the sentiments in a contrasting color if you have time; if not, just put the recipient's name in there. Snip the end with pinking sheers (or not... no sweat). Punch a hole, thread the ribbon through, and in no time, you've got 8 clean and simple tags. Repeat as necessary. (Sources: Stampin' Up! Riding Hood Red and Wild Wasabi inks, Martha Stewart Craft Markers, offray Ribbons)

Now, let's say you're busy, it's nearing the Christmas season, but you do have a little extra time to spend on your gift tags this year. Let's step it up and go for Option 2. Get a few embellies out of your stash... whatever you have on hand will do. The last thing we need to do this time of year is go out shopping for more stuff! For these tags, I used double-sided patterned paper that had a fairly soft, uncomplicated pattern on one side; this was the side I stamped on. I made sure I left an extra long bit of paper on one side of the tag (this will vary, depending on what effect you want - so make the strip of paper however long suits your fancy). Stamp your tag image in red or green, and add a sentiment or the recipient's name, just like the first tags. Fold over the long end of the tag so that you can see the other, more graphic side of your patterned paper along one end of your tag. Trim both ends with decorative edged scissors. Punch a hole in the folded end. Now the fun part.... thread through some twine, cord, yarn, whatever, and attach some buttons, some felt snowflakes - anything you have that is small and decorative. Thread the twine (or yarn, cord, etc.) through the hole and catch a length of ribbon from behind, then thread back through to the front and tie a bow or knot. Tie a knot in the ribbon at the back to make sure it doesn't slide off, and you're done! Stepped-up Christmas tags! There are endless combinations that look great, with not that much time involved. (Sources: Kaiser patterned papers, vintage and Papertrey Ink buttons, Darice hemp cord, Stampin'Up! felt snowflake, 7 Gypsies waxed linen cord)

Okay, now for Option 3. You're a Christmas-in-August kind of gal, you get things done well ahead of time, you feel like making some gift tags (who knows, maybe as gifts in-and-of-themselves), and you are confident you will remember where you put them come Christmastime. I tried to use various techniques and supplies for these next tags, just to give a small idea of how many different looks you can get. I won't go over every little detail (it would probably take me until Thanksgiving to write it all) but you can take what you like from it as a starting point, and go from there. (Please feel free to email me if you have specific questions!)

Here's a tag for those of you who like sparkle! I stamped the image on vellum, then used stickles to frame out the image and the edge of the vellum tag. I stamped a snowflake (from the same set) in white repeatedly on the blue background tag, and also inked up the edges. I tied the two together with a glittery white snowflake, a vintage mother of pearl button, and some waxed twine. (Sources: StazOn ink in midnight blue; SU! vellum; Brilliance pigment ink in moonlight white; Stickles in frosted lace and icicle; Little Yellow Bicycle glittered silk snowflakes; Darice sparkling yarn.)

Next up, a little something for those of you who like Copics. Or Prisma- color pencils, or re-inkers - anything to color with! I stamped the image in Memento ink and had some fun coloring. If you were to do a batch of these, I would suggest stamping them all out, and using one color marker on ALL of the images, before moving on to the next color. It's faster this way (you aren't hunting for markers each time you move to a new tag) and with an image this small, you don't really need to worry too much about keeping the ink wet enough to blend - it's just not that noticeable. With the image looking so cute, all I needed to add was a little pom pom trim, a frame, and a ribbon. (Sources: Copic markers, Basic Grey patterned paper, and trim from my stash.)

Something a little different: basic black and ivory. Very simple yet elegant, this one, and quite appropriate for a man. The ribbon is Jenni Bowlin, and the velvet button is from my stash of "extra buttons" from clothing! Easy peasy.

Lastly, I'll spring a few new images on you - but they are all still from the same set. The one on the left is sort of retro mod, I think, with it's recycled corrugated paper from my light bulb packaging and its little plastic candy cane from Michael's. I dry-brushed some red craft paint on the corrugated paper, added some ribbon, a little scrap of the BG patterned paper, and a red brad. Fun way to use scraps. The one on the right is sort of rustic country. I added the Christmas text stamp to the background, and distressed the edges with some Ranger Distress Ink in brushed corduroy. A little twine, a twig of holly, and a "tag-on-a-tag" make it done.

Thanks for sticking with me through this long post - I hope you've found some inspiration somewhere along the way!

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Quilted Midnight Madness

This card is my take on the Midnight Madness Sketch Challenge for Week #13. When I saw this sketch, I just knew I had to work it into a quilting theme. My mom is an avid quilter, so I have set out to collect some quilting-themed stamps and make her a set of cards. This card uses Karen Lockhart's Quilt Block 2 stamp for the main image, which I colored with Copics and cut out using the Nestabilities Labels One die set. For the background and the sentiment, I used the Quilter's Sampler set from Papertrey Ink. I aligned all the little quilt squares by placing my acrylic block on a patterned grid and setting them out (luckily these stamps are clear.... I'm just not that savvy with my Stamp-a-ma-jig just yet LOL!). The cardstocks are Baja Breeze and Blue Bayou from Stampin'Up!, and white cardstock from PTI. I finished it off with some vintage buttons and Martha Stewart twine. Hopefully some day I will get my sewing machine in working order - this type of card just cries out for some stitching!!!

Thanks for looking!

Night Before Christmas with CHF

Oh, don't ya just love getting new stamps in the mail?!! I just got my order from Cornish Heritage Farms yesterday, so had to jump right in with a Christmas card. The image and sentiment are from a new set called Night Before Christmas. The design of the images in this set makes them PERFECT for making tags, but of course, you can also use them for cards.

I took the little circular snowy village image, along with the sentiment, and colored them with Copics (detail on the right). For the background, I tried distressing a piece of kraft paper with Rangers Distress Ink in peeled paint, but boy, was that paper thirsty!! It drank up that ink and made it all but disappear when it was dry! So I did another coat, then stamped randomly with a pine image from Stampin' Up!'s Peaceful Wishes set (retired) using Always Artichoke dye ink. Then I used Versamark to stamp the medallion from CHF's Ornamental Beauty, and to randomly stamp the little snowflake from Night Before Christmas. I then heat-embossed them all with white embossing powder, and assembled my card. The buttons are from my stash, and the little sparkly dots are "glitter domes" by Mark Richards (just picked them up from Archiver's).

Thanks for looking, and Happy Tuesday!

Saturday, August 8, 2009

Copics on Vellum, an Inspiration Challenge, and a Blog Candy Alert!

Boy, photographing a vellum card is tricky! Scroll down for the Blog Candy Alert... it's a good one!

Anyhoo, these are a couple of cards I made for the Splitcoast Stamper's Inspiration Challenge today, which was Bellacor Vases. I used Copics on vellum to try to mimic the effect of the frosted glass on these two vases. The poppy image is from Cornish Heritage Farms (Botanical Bliss), and the butterfly is from a Martha Stewart set. I stamped with Memories ink on vellum and let it dry for an hour or so. Then I colored the images with Copics - some coloring on the front, some on the back to get a better depth of color. For the poppy card, I cut a panel of yellow cardstock, with a strip of orange, and adhered it to the inside back of the card as the panel for writing on. For the butterfly card, I cut a square of white cardstock, stamped the grasses (Inkadinkado) in Kiwi Kiss ink, and adhered the panel to the inside back.

Here's a side view of the cards, showing a bit of the inside. Now, ordinarily with vellum, I would make sure that the image was backed with cardstock, too, so that the writing wouldn't show through the front of the card. But the vintage-lover in me had an idea.... maybe if the writing shows through, it will look like a collage image that has a text background, with a colored image floating on top. Maybe? Hopefully? When I use these cards, I'll post the result so you can see if it worked ;)!

Okay, on to the Blog Candy alert..... How'd ya like to win these beauties? I just stumbled across this post, and it is the LAST DAY to enter! Quick go to Crafty Goings On to link a card you colored with Copics! There are lots of entries already, but somebody's gotta win, right (it's a random draw, so ya never know!)

Travel Journal

Do you scrapbook? If so, are you the type who stays on top of scrapbooking your pictures, or do you feel like you are drowning in a backlog of photos? I am definitely the latter LOL!! I started out in papercrafting as a scrapbooker many years ago, when it was just becoming popular. Back then, the idea was to sort of chronicle your family history, day by day, month by month, year by year. We had great big books, and lots of stickers! Needless to say, with all the great mini-albums and photo processing programs and awesome materials available today, scrapbooking has come a long way. My mindset, however, needs a little push in the right direction. I need to preserve the memories that are happening right now, and I need to do it before I forget everything!

So, instead of angsting over my backlog of photos, I decided to make a little travel album (with no photos in it yet!!) to have at the ready. This way, when my family and I take our little trips, I can just print out one or two photos that are representative of our experience, and quickly journal (just a little paragraph) so that I don't lose the essence and the feel of the trip over the long years it might take me to get to my "big" scrapbook (if I ever do that....).

This is the journal cover (the journal itself is a grungeboard album from Tim Holtz - love these!). The background "map" is actually the Vintage City Scrapblock from Cornish Heritage Farms. I colored it with Copics, then distressed it with Ranger Distress inks to make it look time-worn. The main image is also from Cornish Heritage Farms - 1938 Suburban from their GM Series. I wanted it to look like a photographic negative clipped to the map, so I used a resist technique to get the effect. First, I stamped Vintage City again on ivory cardstock. Then, I stamped the Suburban in VersaMark ink in the center of the Vintage City image, and embossed with clear embossing powder. Then, I used Laundry Line's photo strip stamp to stamp on either side of the car image. I masked out the photo strip, and brayered right over the top of the Suburban with brown ink. I gently rubbed the brown ink off of the car image, removed the mask, and cut along the photo strip edges. I carefully lined up this "negative strip" image on the background Vintage City image in order to make it look like the map was showing through the negative.

The rest of the items are mostly found objects, some of which are sentimental to me - the luggage tag from our trip to Santorini, a German vocabulary card to remind me of our trips to Germany and Austria, a stamp from a letter from cousins in New Zealand (would LOVE to visit there!). The hardware is from Stampin' Up!'s Hodgepodge Hardware. A couple little stamps from Limited Edition and Inkadinkado complete the collage. I started covering the inside pages (sorry, they don't show in this photo) with ivory cardstock that has been stamped with another Cornish Heritage Farms Scrapblock called Vintage Ledger. That way, these pages will be a good background for either photos or journaling, or both! I plan to "embellish" the pages only with found objects from our trips - matchbook covers, ticket stubs, etc. to keep it simple, meaningful, fun, and above all, quick!

Thanks for looking and have a great weekend!

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

My Midnight Madness

Okay, so perhaps I took this a little too literally, since it is one hour until midnight, when this sketch challenge is over!! I felt a little like Cinderella trying to get this card done on time, LOL!! Anyway, this is my entry for the Midnight Madness Sketch Challenge #12.
I loved this sketch, and wanted to get back to doing these wonderful Midnight Madness Sketch Challenges. I was inspired by Kard Krazy's Tag Challenge (#11) for today, which was Summer Flowers. The two challenges just seemed to naturally come together! My idea for this card was that of an old botanical journal sort of springing to life.
My tag image is from Inkadinkado, colored with Copics, cut out, and popped up on a tag made with some K and Co. text paper, set atop a hydrangea background image from Mary Mata in vellum. The background of the card is made up of Graphic 45 paper (cut up and repositioned), with some Laura Ashley printed vellum at the bottom. The ribbon across the card and the flowers are from my stash. The ribbon on my tag is Martha Stewart.

Thanks for looking and have a wonderful evening!

Citrus Mojo Monday 98

This little card uses the Mojo Monday 98 Sketch, and it's my take on the Gingersnap Creations GC17 Color Challenge, which is to use citrus colors. It also qualifies for my very first Pile It On challenge, which is to use at least 3 flowers and one other challenge of your choice (how fun is that?). The stamps are all from Stampin' Up!'s Bloomin' Beautiful set. I colored the image and some Hero Arts Artist's Flowers with Copics, and dabbed some Kiwi Kiss around the edges of the image panel with a sponge dauber. The patterned paper is from K and Company - there's actually a patterned paper on the bottom, then a patterned glittered vellum (same print) on top of that (hard to see in the photo!). The base cardstock is from SU! (Kiwi Kiss), and I used VersaMark watermark ink to stamp the "blossom" definition from the SU set repeatedly as a subtle background. I got the ribbon at A.C. Moore's. That's about it - not too complicated, this one :).

Thanks for stopping by!

Monday, August 3, 2009

Winter Wonderland Skaters

My card today incorporates three challenges: The Winter Wonderland Week #10 challenge, which has a sketch this week; the Splitcoast Stampers' Inspiration Challenge from Saturday, which is Heavenly Hostess; and the Gingersnap Creations GC16 Spicy Supply challenge, which is to use ribbon on a project. What fun these were to use together!

The Winter Wonderland theme this week was "Winter Wonderland" (how 'bout that?) and Beth Jaffe came up with this adorable sketch.

Over at SCS, Stef found the Heavenly Hostess site, with the cutest aprons! My inspiration apron for that one was this retro skater apron. I included a close-up of the fabric too - showing my favorite winter sport!

Finally, the Gingersnap Creations ladies have been inspiring me so much lately, I just HAD to play along with one of their challenges!! It's my first, so I chose an easy one, LOL! They have three challenges going on right now, and they always allow lots of time for each one. You'll want to check out their site this month, because they have some wonderful blog candy up for grabs (you don't have to play to enter, but after you visit, you'll probably be inspired to create!).

So, onto the details. My main skater image, along with the sentiment, is from Stampin' Up!'s Winter Post stamp set (Loooove it!). The trees and the iceskates for the background paper are both from Inkadinkado. For that background paper, I made a little mini patterned paper by randomly stamping the skate image, masking it, then gently tapping Baja Breeze ink over the white areas with a sponge dauber. I then colored in only the laces (red, to match my ribbon laces embellishment). Both the skates and the main image are colored with Copics. I used two rows of eyelets to resemble those of iceskates, and then laced 'em up! The patterned paper is all from My Mind's Eye Bohemia Bliss line, and the colored cardstock is SU!'s Riding Hood Red and Baja Breeze. (Those two lines go GREAT together - I know those are retired SU colors, but come on, we're all hoarding some, right? ;)) The white cardstock is PTI, and I cut out the image with Nestabilities Labels One. Did I forget anything? Hope not.

Thanks for looking and have a great Monday!

Saturday, August 1, 2009

My First Attempt at Making a Masterboard

Subtitle: I wonder how to make a One Sheet Wonder?
If you've done this before, I am not going to say anything you don't already know! But if you've wondered about the process, I can tell you some 'ins' and 'outs'. It's really pretty easy, but I can let you in on a few things I discovered as a newbie. Here's my finished masterboard from yesterday's post.

I started by procrastinating. Then I wondered and pondered. Then I procrastinated some more by deciding I needed a completely clutter-free craft room in order to do this (you should have seen it sparkle). Then I sat in my sparkling clean and neat room and realized I needed some inspiration and some instructions. I looked through my patterned paper stash and found this Anna Griffin paper, which I love, and wanted to emulate the colors. Next, I needed some guidance. There are lots of sites that can take you through this process, and lots of people who do it very well. It should be said here that you can do a One Sheet Wonder without making your own paper - you just use an entire piece of pre-printed patterned paper to make a set of cards, journal, scrapbook page, whatever. Splitcoast Stampers has a whole gallery devoted to the OSW. As far as making your own paper (masterboard) for a OSW, I primarily relied on the guidance of Sharon Briss at Gingersnap Creations (GREAT site for lots of detailed tutorials and wonderful inspiration). She had two separate tutorials, one on making a masterboard (HERE), and one on masking (HERE, which we'll get to later), which I found very inspirational.

Time to jump in and choose stamps. I chose mainly botanical and insect images so that they would all relate. You don't want to pick too many, or it will become jumbled, and you don't want to pick totally unrelated stamps, or you'll look a little batty. :) So I chose a couple of florals, a couple of insects, and a small patch of text. (I was thinking of antique botanical journal.... are ya feelin' it?) So I tried a dry run, using only one color of ink on regular printer paper, and got this. I also sort of randomly cut it into sections, just see how that would go. (By the way, my previous post lists all the specific resources - all of the stamps are from Cornish Heritage Farms.)

A few tips gleaned thus far in the process: Before I added that sort of bold-looking butterfly, the pattern was very wispy and delicate-looking. I added that butterfly last, and it really pulled it all together. Another thing that became obvious once I cut up a few pieces, is that you really need to make sure lots of images go off the edge of the paper. Otherwise you get this sort of halo effect on one side of each piece of paper, with images running off the other three sides (you can sort of see how this is the case in the photo). I also realized I needed to go a little denser with my stamping - there was too much white space. (You may be able to see that I tried using a shadow stamp in places - in light blue ink - but decided against it. Too complicated for my first try, but I'm going to work on that idea.)

Next, I took my first stab at doing it in color. This one doesn't have the butterflies, and it has too many willows (it looks all spikey and prickly). But at least I got an idea of how the colors would look together, and realized I very much needed that butterfly in a prominent role. It also still looked rather white, so I thought, hmmmm, maybe I should try the whole thing on a piece of colored cardstock?

Uhhh.... nope. That's beyond me right now. Back to white (well actually ivory).

So, here's my first color run with the butterflies. The problem here (maybe you can see it if you click to make the picture bigger) is that all those spikey thingies were poking through my butterflies. Clearly, I had to mask these beauties so they wouldn't look skewered. This is where Sharon's masking technique came in. Out came the post-it notes.

At this point I decided I was ready to stamp on some real-deal ivory cardstock. Here's the paper with butterflies, all covered up with sticky notes. Now, as I was cutting out the fifth butterfly, I saw images of myself at the age of 80, still cutting, and it finally hit me. That forehead-slapping, "DUH" moment: These post-it sheets STICK TOGETHER. DO THEM ALL AT ONCE!!! So from then on, I stamped once, pulled off multiple post-it sheets together (I had no trouble cutting through 5) and tada, all of my masking needs are taken care of. Sheesh.

Here's my second layer (the pussy willows) over the butterflies.

I stamped the red floral image next, and some green bees. Then I stamped some pale blue dragonflies (in retrospect, I wish I had made them a darker blue - for you SU!ers out there, I wish I had used Baja Breeze instead of Soft Sky). Here are my dragonfly masks, stamped up where the paper is most sticky. I wanted them to be floating above the text stamp, so I had to mask them, too (but I only had to cut them out twice - about 5-6 sheets of paper together at once. Needed my long thumbnail, though, to get them apart!!). I only actually cut out the part with the wings - the rest of their bodies I just stamped over. The last bit was the text block. I should say that most of the stamp placement was random (just stamped each image roughly equally spaced). But I wanted to be sure the text surrounded most of the dragonflies, so that dictated placement a bit for that stamp. But it wasn't 100% matchy...... AND I WAS DONE!

The next step: cutting the thing up (yikes!). Before I did this, I went through some of the cards I made in the past, to see what my sort of "go-to" layouts were when using patterned paper. I wanted to make it easy on myself! So I made sure I planned to cut a few pieces that were easy to use. For the remaining sections, I looked through magazines and on the web to find inspiration, and came up with sketches that determined what the remaining shapes would be. I drew them out and cut them out of plain printer paper first, just to play with them a little.

Then I made sure my diagram was correct (uh, that was the plan, it wasn't EXACTLY correct) and cut out my masterboard pieces. As I was working, I decided to tweak things a little. One of those 4 1/2 by 3 inch pieces got cut into three parts: a 4 1/2 by 2 inch piece, and two 2 1/4 by 1 inch pieces (those two I used for the tags). This was just because my layout with that piece just wasn't coming together. Sometimes you just have to go with the flow. I also trimmed one of those long skinny pieces in order to mat it (but I only had a tiny 1/4 inch sliver left, so I think it's okay in OSW world!). You can see my "waste" pieces there on the bottom right - not too bad. And that's it! I will definitely do it again, and I'm sure it will go more quickly next time. Then I was left to make 6 cards! Oh, and two tags, and a box to put them in. (You can see the results in my previous post.) But it's all fun, really.

So, wanna see something funny? You know that sparkling clean and neat craft room I was telling you about? This is what it looked like when I was finally done........

Have a great weekend!! :)