Saturday, January 29, 2011

Why I'm Not Crafting This Weekend....

.... I'm at the National Hockey League All Star Game and festivities!  I am a hockey nut (as is the rest of the family), and yesterday we spent the entire day at Fan Fair in downtown Raleigh, North Carolina.... getting autographs of players and former players, visiting the trophies, watching live TV broadcasts and generally soaking up the atmosphere.  In the evening, the two sets of captains for each All Star team picked the rest of the players on their teams by draft - a school yard style game of who-picks-who.  Of course, one team is stacked with players from our local NHL team, the Carolina Hurricanes.  Oh, and a few other future Hall of Fame players for good measure, too (the pic shows some of our boys in red).  After the draft was over we took in a free concert by the band 3 Doors Down, capped off by some fireworks.  It was a late night for the kids, but they loved it.

Today is the All Star Skills competition, and tomorrow is the game itself.  One of the advantages of hockey "down south" is that we will be tailgating in the arena parking lot today and tomorrow, under gorgeous sunny blue skies and temperatures in the mid-50s F.  I hope you all have a fun weekend, and I will be back crafting Monday with some new Artistic Outpost stamps I just added to my stash (couldn't help myself) and a new Gingersnap Creations challenge on Wednesday.  Have a Happy!  

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Valentine Exchange with Mish Mash

Hello and happy Thursday!  I recently had an opportunity to take part in a fun little blogger "exchange."  Some of you may know of Michelle Wooderson, of the blog Mish Mash.  She recently put together a delightful little kit of goodies (10 kits, actually), and put them in her Etsy shop with the idea that whoever bought them would send her a picture of the Valentine project(s) they made with the kit.  She would then post everyone's projects on her blog, in a sort of Valentine's "virtual exchange" of inspirational ideas.  I've been stalking her shop for ages and decided to jump in and make a purchase in order to take part in this fun little project.

The post with everyone's projects is HERE.  Mish has given the participants until February 10th to post.  These little pics at right show the kit ingredients and a picture of how the kit was packaged - in a bag with ribbon and punched paper that are all also very usable!  Although my card is made up of mostly items from the kit, I still had lots of little goodies left.  But first things first....

For the card above, I stamped the adorable kids from the Rogue Redhead Designs Relish Reading plate, colored them with Copics, and cut them out.  I used the heart doily from the kit and laced it through with the seam binding that tied the kit shut.  For the rest of the card, I started with a kraft base, then stitched on blue colored kraft paper from The Paper Temptress.  (This stuff is really neat... it's like paper bag paper, colored on one side, and you can use sandpaper to distress off the color and make it nice and shabby.)  I stamped on a scroll design with Versamark, but it's hard to see in the photo.  I also used the strip of patterned paper provided in the kit.  Embellishments include a fabric yo-yo, tag (which I distressed with Old Paper Distress Ink and stamped with the Love sentiment), button, and baker's twine, all from the kit.
I still had lots of little goodies left.  Here's a little pic of another project I made - a treat bag - using the glassine envelope, the gathered crepe paper, the heart punched paper, the white embossed heart, and the clothespin from the kit.  And I still have some ledger labels, a pink gift sack (that the kit came in), and a patterned paper heart left over for another project. 

This was a fun, affordable way to get a little inspiration from an outside source, without committing to anything big.  Great way to stoke the old mojo!  

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Gingersnap Creations GC88: Coffee and Cream

Time for a yummy new color challenge over at Gingersnap Creations: GC88 Coffee and Cream!  I'm in the middle of a wonderful novel called The Forgotten Garden by Kate Morton, and it's got me thinking of bygone eras and turn of the century customs.  I decided to create a little packet of faux ephemera... a little pile of imagined sweet remembrances, of a best friend, a sister, a daughter who has fled the nest to experience the world.  A ribbon from her hair, a letter detailing all of her new experiences, a postcard from exciting places abroad, a rose petal carefully preserved.  And of course, a photo from her 18th birthday.  All a bit coffee stained, of course, from so much handling, re-reading.  Lying atop a pretty folder to keep it all in.  The vintage photo image is from Oxford Impressions, the postcard from Unity Stamp Co., and the coffee stains from Close To My Heart.  

My coffee table has a glass top, with a shadow box display case beneath it - this will go there, along with some vintage doilies and some Valentine's whatnots.  I had fun with this color scheme - so subtle that it becomes more about textures and shapes.  I hope you'll have time to play along!  You can post a link to your Coffee and Cream creation to share over at Gingersnap Creations.   

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Papertrey January Blog Hop Challenge

Ever have an idea rattling around in your head for ages, and need a little extra "push" to bring it to life?  Enter the Papertrey Ink Blog Hop!  The theme was to use either a new set that had never been inked, or an older set that needed some love.  I chose to combine the two.  Since the moment I saw the Love Lives Here set, with it's little hearts embedded in every sweet image, I've wanted to pair it in some way with the little birdies from Bird Watching Additions, especially the one with the little heart, of course.  So that's what I did here.  I gave the little bluebirds a home, backed by some sweet birdsong (vintage sheet music).  I inked up the sentiment with Memento markers and cut it out with Nestabilities Curvy Rectangles.  Added a little button, and some red and blue baker's twine from Mish's Etsy shop.  A bit of stitching around the edges to give it a little more homespun feel, and it was done.  Fast, fun, and sweet.  Hope you enjoy the rest of your evening!

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Tag Tuesday Winter

Finally, finally getting to post something to this poor neglected blog of mine!  I've been working on a few things that I'll be able to share sometime in the future (some soon, some much later), and just haven't had that precious "extra" time - you know the kind I mean.

Anyway, I'm happy that I got to play along with Louise's latest Tag Tuesday Challenge - Winter.  I used the scene outside my window as my inspiration:  the colors (blue sky, pine needle green, tree trunk brown, a snowy white flurry or two, a sunny twinkle to the landscape), the textures (rough, wrinkled, dried), the sounds (birdsong at my feeder), and of course, the little feathered friend.  I used lots of scraps left over from other projects, too.  The corrugated cardboard was painted white a week ago - I added some Patina Glimmer Mist for sky.  The twinkly, crinkly crepe was my backdrop of flurries, along with a few vellum-embossed white flakes. Vintage music, of course, is my paper version of birdsong.  The birdie is a little something I had lined up for two Tag Tuesday challenges ago, but alas, never got to; he's from a Pottery Barn paper bag, and he was supposed to star in the challenge of using Christmas scraps.  I think he's happy here. ;)  Stamps are from Artistic Outpost, inks from Ranger. 

Friday, January 14, 2011

Rogue Redhead for the New Mom

A quick little post of a card to accompany a gift of nursery rhymes and children's books for a new mom.  The image is from Rogue Redhead Designs, and you can get the details over at the Rogue Redhead blog.

I also wanted to share the fabulous 4x4's that I received in the most recent Gingersnap Creations swap.  My photography doesn't even begin to show the luscious details on these cards - the embossing, the glitter, the shimmer.  Frosty goodness at its best, I tell ya!  These gorgeous designs are by (clockwise from top left): Ali Manning, Penny Bennington, Krisha Ogle, and Netty Goatley.  These gals are a talented group! Thanks so much, ladies!!!

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Gingersnap Creations' Coffee Filter Challenge

It's time for another fun supply challenge over at Gingersnap Creations, and since the theme this month is "Hot Beverages," the CG86 Challenge is to use Coffee Filters.  I love playing with coffee filters - it's so easy to stamp on them, and I love, love, love the effect of Glimmer Mists on coffee filters.  The filters are strong enough to withstand a decent soaking, so you can combine colors and get a really rich feeling. 

I don't really have much in the way of Valentine's-themed home decor, so I wanted to make a romantic little hanging for this challenge.  I sprayed my coffee filters with Glimmer Mists in Creme de Rouge, Bubblegum, and Coffee Shop (of course!).  I then used them for both the ruffle and for the sentiment at the top.  I wanted lots of shabby chic yumminess, so the base of the hanging is cardboard that I tore to show the corrugation and painted with ivory paint. The next layer is some vintage sheet music, then a swatch of fabric with some zigzag stitching around the edges.  The Tattered Angels frame is sprayed with Creme de Rouge, and that romantic image is from Scrolls Work (it's called Deb & Rick).  Some upcycled lace from a thrift shop blouse and some crinkly seam binding give it some more romance.  A key, a blossom, a decorative pin, some more silk ribbon, pearl, a rusty hanger - aaaah, I had so much fun, LOL!

You can check out all of the creative ways the design team used coffee filters over at Gingersnap Creations.  I urge you to try this - it's such an inexpensive supply, and even if you're strictly a tea drinker, you probably know someone who could give you a few coffee filters to play with. Stamp 'em, ink 'em, spray 'em, paint 'em - lots of possibilities.  We'd love to see what you come up with. ;)

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Ginspirational Labels

So I went into my craft room this morning to clean up, organize, declutter.  I came out with this.  Funny, but the craft room doesn't look much different.  Maybe a tad messier, LOL!

I couldn't help myself when I saw the labels sitting there, waiting to be used in yet another Once in a Blue Moon Ginspiration Challenge over at Gingersnap Creations.  This time it was Sharon Briss's gorgeous challenge piece that inspired me.  She stamped and colored on a sheet of regular old labels, then transferred them all to a card, which she has on her blog *HERE*. Love, love, love.

For my card, I used my new Beyond the Sea set from Artistic Outpost, colored with Distress Inks in Broken China, Tumbled Glass, Shabby Shutters, Peeled Paint, Old Paper, Antique Linen, and Pumice Stone.  I backed the labels with some sanded Coordinations cardstock.  I added a little vintage sheet music and a little dyed cheesecloth attached with Tim's tiny attacher, all on a kraft base.  This was so fun, so easy, so quick - I had no idea it would take so little time.  One thing that made it easier for me was that in my case, I could cut away a bit of the label backing sheet at the top, stick the tops of the labels down onto the cardstock, then gently and carefully peel away the rest of the backing sheet - no need to line anything up!  Now I just wish I could find more of these labels... I think they came with some sort of scrapbooking kit at one time.  I definitely want to do this technique again!

P.S. Do check out Artistic Outpost's Referral Program if you haven't seen it.... you could win some incredibly gorgeous stamps, just for using the AO stamps you already have.  How sweet is that?

Monday, January 3, 2011

Single Layer Card Ginspiration

Things are back to a normal routine today - DH is back at work, the kids are back at school.  I love the holidays, love having the family around every moment.  But these days are nice too - sort of a sigh of relief after the hustle and bustle.  I have major post-holiday clean-up to do, but it'll get done.  I just had to get in a little craft time to coax my listless mojo a little more out of hiding!

Today I have another card inspired by the Gingers' Ginspirational Challenge.  This challenge was thunk up by Jo Capper-Sandon: to create a single-layer card.  Yep, no patterned papers, doo-dads, ribbons, rhinestones, brads... nuthin'!  You can see Jo's glorious creation HERE, soooo beautiful!

So, I first tapped a background stamp by Stampers Anonymous (Tim's Slight Alterations set) with a few distress inks (tumbled glass, broken china, shabby shutters, and peeled paint), then I spritzed the stamp with pearl Glimmer Mist before stamping it on linen textured cardstock. Next I stamped some favorite images from Artistic Outpost's Birds of a Feather set. It's hard to see, but as a little textural detail, I used one of the floral stamps to clear emboss a little border across the bottom.  Just a little subtle thing to add interest, like the pearl shimmer.  Last I added two stamped "photo corners" so that it looked like it was ripped from a bird watcher's notebook.  That's it.  Totally mailable, LOL!

I'm looking forward to more challenges to get my creative juices flowing.  For this particular challenge, you have until January 25th to try one or try them all - check it out at Gingersnap Creations