Monday, January 26, 2015

Valentine's Day is just around the corner...

Can you believe that we are just a couple weeks away from the day of hearts and flowers, chocolates and cards, and best of all, hugs and kisses?

I have been busy making some Valentine cards along with all the other cards I've been working on. It seems like I'm making more cards than ever before. How is that possible? I haven't gained any new relatives or new friends to whom I am sending cards. Maybe I'm just slower in getting them made, and it only SEEMS like there are more of them.

Anyway, here's a Valentine card that I made recently. This one is decidedly more feminine than the last one.

This Valentine card was made using the traditional colors of red, pink and white. The background DSP is actually a deep pink and red pattern. I had fun adding a few sequins on this one.

I heat embossed the sentiment with white embossing powder, but it doesn't look very white, does it? That's because it really is an off white. Does anyone know of an embossing powder that is a bright white after heating it? I'd sure love to have some advice on this, so that I don't have to try 8 or 10 of them before I finally hit on a truly white one. I've got two containers of "white" embossing powder now, and neither one is truly white.

I cut this pretty heart from the Best Images of 2008 cartridge. It has four layers, but was very quick to put together. The top red layer with all the flourishes was sprayed with some adhesive and then coated with some clear glitter.

You can just see that I've inked around the pink scalloped heart with a darker pink ink.

The inside is pretty simple - just a computer-generated sentiment and some red hearts punched from the same DSP that was used on the front of my card.

Thanks so much for stopping by, and remember to laugh--a little or a lot--every day.

Friday, January 23, 2015

A Valentine card for my husband...

He is a dear man, but he doesn't read my blog...go I'm safe in posting his Valentine here before Valentine's Day.

I used a Lifestyle Crafts die called "Branches" for my branch, then added a couple of hanging hearts cut with the "Precious Hearts" die by Memory Box. The "I Love You" stamp is from a very old set - not even sure what brand it is anymore.

Here's the inside of my card with it's punch line:
My husband knows I like a good nap - especially on the weekends - so I think he'll appreciate this sentiment. LOL

Now, I just want to share what's been blooming at our house:

Isn't this a beautiful amaryllis? I love the contrast of the big, red blooms against the snowy looking weather outside.

This was a bulb that I picked up at The Home Depot in December. As we speak, all eight blossoms (four on each stalk) have opened up and it really looks impressive.

I've been reading online about the process in prepping the bulb for next year after the flowers have faded. Have you ever done this? I'm just wondering if it is ever successful. I'm not sure if I'll give it a try. Maybe...

Thanks so much for stopping by and allowing me to share a card and my lovely amaryllis.

Don't forget to laugh--a little or a lot--every day.

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Some coloring practice on a baby card...

I love my ProMarkers and am trying to learn how to use them on my own. I think it would be great to take a class, but I've never seen any offered in my area. I know there are online classes available, but I think I would learn more if I attended one in person.

I recently made a card using a digital stamp from, and I colored the image with my ProMarkers. I have a hard time maintaining a smooth appearance on my images. I'm not sure if that is just my inability to color well, a problem caused by not using paper specifically made for alcohol markers or both! I still have a lot of fun coloring, though, and I'm hoping my skills will improve with time.

I added some "dots" over the bear's fur with one of my brown markers, trying to make it look like it had some texture. Not sure I achieved that, but I think he's still pretty cute. I chalked the background of my image with a pale yellow, as I didn't like the stark white of the paper. One of the great attributes of alcohol markers is that they can be used in conjunction with other coloring tools (like chalk or watercolor pencils) to achieve lots of different results. I enjoy learning how to use these different kinds of tools together.

My background DSP is from My Mind's Eye "Boy Crazy" 6" X 6" pad. The sentiment was also on a page in this pad with several other sentiments , so I simply fussy cut it out and adhered it o the front of my card with some foam tape. The stars were cut with some Sizzix dies and covered with glitter before I added them to my card.

I also cut a couple of stars for the inside of my card.
The sentiment is a stamp from My Craft Spot. I FINALLY now have a set of "Welcome Baby" type sentiment stamps.

I'm entering this card in Passion for ProMarker's Challenge #280: New Beginnings.

Thanks so much for stopping by, and remember to laugh--a little or a lot--every day.

Sunday, January 18, 2015

Another masculine card...

My sister gave me some typewriter die-cuts a while ago. The die she used is made by Spellbinders, and it's such a great old-fashioned looking typewriter - not far off from the first typewriter I ever had. When I was a teen, I had to take typing in school (as most of us did back then), and I purchased a used typewriter from someone (I can't even remember who anymore). I used this old typewriter at home, and I think I may have even taken it to college with me. It honestly looked a little like this one! I'm telling you, it was OLD, which is the only reason I could afford it back then!

I added the little sheet of  paper after I printed "Thank you..." on it. I also added the semi-circle of gray cardstock, on which I had drawn some radii and inked its edges. A couple of silver mini-brads on either side and a gray piece of cardstock behind the keys.

The top and bottom borders on my card front were cut with a Cuttlebug die. Aren't they perfect for this typewriter card? That semi-circle in the middle of the border mimics the one on the typewriter!

You'll also see in this close-up that I added a couple of black faux-pearls to either side of the carriage with my black Viva D├ęcor pen. There were a couple of tiny holes in these two spots and where the silver brads were attached. I could have done them all the same, but decided I liked adding both kinds of embellishment.

I also tried this card in a little plainer version with just a couple strips of black Washi tape at the bottom. I have to say, this one is fine, but I definitely like the first one better. How about you?

We've had kind of a lazy weekend. Napping when we can and definitely not working too hard. It was so nice not to have any deadlines to meet or functions to attend. I hope your weekend was lovely, too.

Thanks so much for stopping by, and remember to laugh--a little or a lot--every day.

Friday, January 16, 2015

Masculine cards...

Happy Friday, everyone! I hope your weekend is fabulous!

Recently, I was creating a selection of cards for my daughter to have on hand, and I wanted to include a few masculine cards. First, I wanted to try some stenciling, since said daughter had given me a selection of stencils for Christmas. I purchased some finger daubers for this purpose, and I have to say I LOVE both the stencils and the daubers.

I decided to tray this arrow-like pattern on my card front with some deep teal ink. Then I added a couple pieces of coordinating Washi tape and a sentiment that was cut out with an old Cuttlebug die.

On the inside, I added a little more of the stenciling, a strip of my cardstock and a computer-generated sentiment.

This was a super-quick card to make, and I know I'll be doing more stenciling in the future. It's definitely a fun technique!

For my next card, I selected some masculine patterned paper.
 My daughter had also given me a package of these cute little white banners that already had an eyelet in one end. They are the perfect size for some of my smaller sentiments, and I liked this design where I used one word per banner--no struggle to make sure the words are all perfectly aligned!

If you look closely, you'll see that a little piece of black ribbon is threaded through each eyelet hole, and then those ribbon ends are tied together with some heavy yellow thread (I think it's the kind that's normally used for crewel-type embroidery). I also wrapped this thread around my DSP three times before adhering it to my card front.

The inside of this card is very simple - just a yellow mat and a stamped sentiment from Fiskars.

I like using strong colors and graphic patterns for masculine cards. How about you? Do you have any go-to design methods for masculine cards? I'd love to have a few more ideas to lean on when designing these kinds of cards.

Thank so much for stopping by, and remember to laugh--a little of a lot--every day.

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Thinking of you...

I was making an assortment of cards for one of my daughters, and I came up with this one.  The DSP in the background has a subtle leaf pattern on it in gray tones

The leafy branch is a Marianne Creatables die-cut. I'm not sure which stamp I used for the sentiment, but I love the font on this one.

On the inside of the card, I used one of my oldest stamp sets (not even sure of the brand anymore), to stamp another leafy branch, leaving plenty of room to write a note.

I used Versafine onyx black ink for both the sentiment on the front and the image on the inside. I find it to stamp cleanest and with the best coverage, especially for sentiments. Wish I had all the colors that are currently available. Sadly, I only have the black ink pad right now, but I LOVE it!

Well, that's it for me today. I now NEED to get started on my Valentines. I've challenged my sister to see who can get the first two Valentines completed first. We both feel we need a kick in the behind to get them done, so maybe this challenge will get us going.

Thanks so much for stopping by, and remember to laugh--a little or a lot--every day.

Saturday, January 10, 2015

Baby girl card...

My niece gave birth to a baby girl on New Year's Day, and I needed to make a card to send to her. I found some inspiration on Pinterest and came up with this sweet baby bib card.

First, I embossed the white background mat with my Cuttlebug Swiss Dots folder. Then, I cut a circle with one of my Lifestyle Crafts/Quickutz nesting doily dies. Using a smaller plain circle die, I cut out the neckline. I also cut a plain white circle to fit inside the doily die-cut and embossed this with a Darice embossing folder called "Floral Border."

A little bit of pink rickrack finished the neckline edge with three punched hearts at the center.

I tied a bow in the center of a length of stitched ribbon and then tucked each long end behind the bib to form the bib's tie.

Oh, yes, the three pink buttons were also made out of cardstock with my Impression Obsession button dies. Love those dies and the buttons they make. I generally use double-sided adhesive to adhere two pieces of cardstock together and then use that to cut out my buttons. I glue two of these together to total four layers that make a nice sturdy button, but not one that is so thick that it will require extra postage when the card is mailed. Notice that I have added some baker's twine to the buttons to make them look sewn on. I have a thing about naked buttons - in my book they just need some sort of thread when added to a card!

The sentiment on the inside was computer generated and three more little punched hearts were added as accents.

It was so much fun to make this girly baby card. I hope my niece likes it.

Thanks so much for stopping by, and remember to laugh--a little or a lot--every day.