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Friday, August 26, 2016

Sympathy Cards Needed for Two Families!

My cousin-in-law, whom you just saw a birthday post a few days ago, lost her mother on her birthday.  How sad to always remember losing your mother on your birthday, but in this case, her daughter gave her Mom permission to find peace in heaven with her Dad, and that it would be the best birthday gift she could give her.  Very poignant. . .it brings tears to my eyes.

My other sympathy card goes to my son-in-law and my daughter in the loss of his father.  His illness has been going on for almost two years, and as the severity increased in the past two months, we have all been praying for God to ease his suffering and for him to find peace in heaven.  He passed away this past Sunday.  I'm hoping both families receive a little comfort from my handmade cards. . .take a look below:

Ingredients:  Stampin' Up products:  Cardstock--Night of Navy, Crumb Cake, Old Olive, Very Vanilla.  Stamps--Bloom with Hope (ret. 2015), Hardwood (background), Mixed Bunch (large flower-ret.), Petite Petals, .  Ink--Night of Navy, Whisper White Craft (ret.).  Dies--Hexagon Hive (ret.), Sizzlits Little Leaves (ret.).  Punches: Modern Label (ret.), Blossom (ret.), 5/8" Chevron Ribbon (ret.).  Pearls.  Other: EK Punch: Scallop Corners, Medium.  Computer verse.  Size: 5" x 6".  (TY Liz Thayer for original design idea).

The Card Story & Other Tidbits
For these two families, I decided to use a design that I was introduced to over two years ago in March 2014 at a cardmaking event hosted by Liz Thayer, my Stampin' Up upline.  This was an event where we were to make two cards of six designs.  As I began preparing the parts for this particular card, as is usual for me, ideas began popping in my head of some things I wanted to change on the basic design and the embellishments.  I knew I wanted to added a little more color, some more mat layers, change the sentiment, and tweak the embellishments just a bit.  I completed the stamping, punching and die-cutting needed, and I decided to pack up my card pieces to finish these two duplicate cards at home.

Believe it or not, I have looked at these cards at least ten times in the past two years and have never actually finished them, but I did decided that they would make lovely sympathy cards rather than the original "get well" design.  Remembering this thought, I pulled out the pieces and finished both cards to give to the loved ones of those who have passed on to peace with the Lord. 

Besides changing them to sympathy cards, my other changes are that I added a navy blue cardbase and a Crumb Cake mat layer to coordinate with my ribbon flag, which enlarged the cards, making them more my style.  I turned over the chevron-patterned ribbon, deciding to use the solid color on the back.  I moved the ribbon flag and flowers higher on the cards to allow more room that I thought was needed for the sentiment.  I added an under mat to my sentiment and also added more leaves to the flowers, using a different die.  Though Liz's original design to very evident, I think my changes here and there really add to the lovely original design, and it suits my cardmaking style.  I finished off my cards by creating an inside design that coordinates with the card front and a sympathy verse to suit the occasion.

Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Fun Birthday Splatters For A Niece!

One of my sister's girls has a birthday in my birthday month of August.  I thought I would like to try out the Splatter Technique that I was briefly introduced to just about a year ago in late August at a cardmaking/ teaching class given by the Stampin' Up duo. . .Dara Peterson and Luci Kirschbaum.  This first try was on a Christmas card, and it seemed a simple enough technique and quite effective so I thought I would try it again.  Take a look at my niece's finished card, which I cased using a card design by Darla Watson, a California Stampin' Up demonstrator that I visited during my trip south this past spring. 

Ingredients:  Stampin' Up products:  Cardstocks--Bermuda Bay, Whisper White.  Sponging Ink--Pear Pizzazz, Bermuda Bay.  Stamp--Sassy Salutations (retired).  Stamp Ink: Old Olive.  Sequins--Metallics.  Splattering: Bermuda Bay Ink.  White Emobssing Powder.  Papertrey Ink stamp--Inside & Out: Birthday I.  Size: 4-1/4" x 5-1/2".  (Thanks Darla Watson for your lovely original design).

The Story & Tidbits

Darla's card that I chose to case was definitely a clean and simple style, of which I am not generally a fan, but this particular card used one of my favorite color combination: teal and pear green; thus, it really caught my eye.  The original card had a less splatters on the front, as it was achieved by stamping the splatters with Stampin' Up's Gorgeous Grunge stamp set.  For me, it didn't have enough splatters, thus the idea came to mind to use the Splatter Technique that I had learned and used that one time.  It achieves a similar look to spritzing as well, but I find it much more controllable and your splatters do not end up as large, which is what I wanted in this case. 

First, I heat-embossed my sentiment with white embossing ink.  Next, I sponged my ink colors onto the front area as shown on the card.  I sponged until I achieved the color depth I desired.  The final step is to add your splatters either by stamping with an appropriate stamp, such as Stampin' Up's Gorgeous Grunge, or by using the Splatter Technique, which I describe below.

The Splatter Technique is achieved by using a water brush, (in Stampin' Up lingo, it's called an Aqua Painter), which has its hollow barrel filled with water, stamping ink, and the flicking motion.  For your color, you can use a bottle of stamp re-inker by dropping a few droplets onto the inside lid of its matching stamp ink pad, or by squishing your stamping ink onto its box lid, or dropping your ink onto a large acrylic stamping block (because it cleans up easily).  There are other ideas out there as well.  For the flicking motion: gently squeeze the water brush barrel to load your brush tip with water, dip the wet water brush into the re-inker drops, lay the barrel of the water brush across your pointer finger about one inch below its bristles, and finally, flick (or snap) the brush barrel below the bristles with your other hand.  Reload your brush with water as needed and with ink, and repeat the flicking motion until you get enough splatters to suit.  The distance the brush is away from your paper will change the splatter effect.  So, practice with it, achieve the color intensity desired, you feel comfortable with the flicking motion, and you achieve the look you like.  

If you do not have a water brush, you can also use a regular paint brush (like one that comes in a children's paint set),  dip and wet its brush well into a small container of water and then into your ink drops and flick.  For the most intense color, you can use a regular paint brush, dampening it just to moisten, wipe off excess water on a paper towel, and dip directly into your ink drops and flick.  You can also mix your ink color and water prior to flicking.  The formula I was told to use for this method was approximately one tablespoon of water to one to three drops of re-inker, depending on how dark you want your ink splatters to be.

As you can see, there are a variety of Splatter Techniques and even more than I have mentioned.  Check it out on Pinterest or YouTube videos. . .enjoy Splattering!!!

Saturday, August 20, 2016

Birthday Celebrations for Cousin-in-Law & Friend!

One of my husband's MANY cousins has a delightful wife whom I find a very warm and caring  person.  I got to know her well several years ago when another of John's cousins in Kansas decided to host a huge extended family reunion on their farm around the 4th of July. . .food, visiting, a lake, swimming, boating, and massive fireworks. . .what's not to like!?  This lovely cousin-in-law did not hesitate to invite my husband, me, and our four teen-age to young adult children to share their home and hospitality.  In addition, they offered us an extra automobile to drive during our stay, which enabled us to pick up family members at the airport as they arrived and visit others of my husband's many, many relatives residing in the Kansas area.  I will never forgot the kindness extended to us; therefore, I love to send Barbara one of my homemade cards each birthday to celebrate her special day.  Take a look at the card I chose for this special cousin-in-law, along with a peek at my inside design that coordinates with the card front!

Ingredients:  SU products:  Cardstock--Whisper White, Crushed Curry.  Stamps--Remembering Your Birthday (sentiment).  Fluttering E-Folder.  Punches--Petite Petals, Itty Bitty Pack-flower, Curvy Corner punch (retired).  1-1/4" Burlap Ribbon.  Pearls (Copic colored).  Papertrey stamp--Inside & Out: Birthday I (verse).   

The Story & Other Tidbits!

The card that I chose to give Barbara is one that I began at a cardmaking event I attended while visiting my mother in California this past spring and finished on our Mt. Shasta Girls' Get-away.  The cardmaking event was hosted by Darla Watson, a Stampin' Up demonstrator, whom I met about eight years ago while attending one of her four-day special papercrafting retreats. . .what lovely memories that brings back.  I loved Darla's card design, which was a Mother's Day card, but I knew right off that I would not be able to use it for that occasion as my Mom was sitting right beside me making one too.  Mom needed to change her greeting sentiment because her Mom (and my grandmother) is no longer with us for going on 45 years.  We both decided not to finish the card, except for the texture embossing and take the parts home to finish it later.  

Darla's original design was monotone in all white, except for the little flower centers, which were yellow.  When I pulled out the parts later, my brain said, you need more color.  I added a Crush Curry mat layer and decided that's exactly what I wanted.  So, I cut a larger card base, added the Crushed Curry layer and then the textured embossed card front.  

I came away from the class without the colored enamel dots for the flower centers, so I used pearls instead and colored them with my Copic markers, choosing to make mine multi-colored instead of just yellow.  I really like how the colored pearls look with their soft sheen instead of the flat, mat finish of the enamel dots.  I also found the perfect birthday sentiment and verse from two of Mom's birthday stamp sets.  The sentiment was from a Stampin' Up set and a birthday verse was from a Papertrey stamp set.  I was pleased with the outcome of my finished card.

Wednesday, August 17, 2016

A Special Card for Mom's Birthday!

As is true every year. . .I always want to make an extra special card just for Mom for her birthday.  It needs to be something pretty and feminine that she will love.  My gosh, it is difficult to believe, but Mom will be 91 this year!  I just returned from a long and wonderful visit during May and the first half of June, and I am happy to say that she is just as spry as she has always been.  She always was able to walk my legs off on any mall shopping trip.  

For her card, my creative juice have been fermenting for quite some time while I was busy making other cards.  I had definitely decided that somehow I was going to use flowers on her card by using my new Stampin' Up Botanical Builder framelits that I had purchased in the early spring and somehow had never gotten around to using them!  Shame on me!  Take a look at my finished card that I finally decided upon, as well as the finished inside to coordinate with my outside creative design.

Ingredients:  Bazzill Platinum Frost Vellum.  DCWV: Watercolors Stack.  Darice Glitter Silk: Opulent Opal (glitter paper).  SU products:  Pretty in Pink cardstock, Gold Foil, Pretty in Pink Ink, Botanical Builder framelits.  Digital image by 2 Cute Ink: Pretty Ostrich.  Copic Marker coloring.  MFT dies: Zigzag Stitched Ovals.  Spellbinder dies: Big Scallop Ovals SM (largest).  EK punch: Arrows.  Wink of Stella: Gold.  Technique: Cloud Sponging.  Size: 4-3/4" x 6".

The Story + Tidbits
Not only did I know I wanted to add flowers made with my Botanical Gardens thinlits, I also wanted to use a flamingo, which seems to be all the rage right now.  I found this darling flamingo paper in a DCWV stack called Watercolors.  It was shade in the ombre style in a light pink-violet shading into almost white at the bottom.  It was really just was I was looking for except I was looking for more of a real pink shade without the violet tinge.  My solution was to choose the perfect pink for my cardbase, which turned out to be Pretty in Pink (a retired Stampin' Up color).  I then sponged the flamingo paper with the Pretty in Pink stamp pad ink until I got the depth of color I desired.

In my mind's eye I had light pink vellum mixed with Pretty in Pink shaded petals and gold foil for the leaves and flower centers to match the gold foil flamingos.  I had some really pretty frosted platinum white vellum that looked pearlescent.  I sponged the back and the front of the flower petals with the Pretty in Pink stamp ink, which doesn't really show up in the picture.  Next, I chose Pirouette Pink cardstock for the base of the flowers and shaded them with the Pretty in Pink ink as well so it had different shadings of light and darker rather than a flat color by just using the color of the cardstock.  It made for a prettier more realistic flower, though I don't think the picture does it justice.

I colored my 2 Cute Ink digi image with Copic Markers to match my cardstock and patterned paper colors, choosing a darker shade for the head flower and body flowers on the little flamingo.  I also used Wink of Stella: Gold on the digi images flower centers.  Except for the larger head flower, I'm not sure this gold glittery effects shows up elsewhere.  Next came the background behind my flamingo digi.  I didn't think just a brushed light blue with my Copic markers would really look that good and I thought it needed clouds.  So, I used the cardstock template idea made with a scalloped die to get the look you see on the card picture.  I had seen several YouTube videos showing this technique, but never tried it myself.  I think it turned out okay, but feel I still need a bit more practice to feel totally comfortable.

Saturday, August 13, 2016

Getting Well After Surgery. . .

My son's girlfriend recently had surgery and spent a day in the hospital.  She's in that after-surgery rough patch where the pain becomes worse and nothing seems to be going the way you think it should.  I wanted to send some meals and a little homemade get-well card to cheer her up and to let her know that we are thinking about her and hoping she feels better real soon.

I'm still in my vintagey mood, so I put together what I call a simple vintage card, using soft-colored patterned papers, distressing, layering and embellishments to dress it up.  I love word dies and this lower-case "get well" word die that I recently purchased will be perfect for my style of card.  Take a look below at my finished card creation, showing both the front and the decorative inside with a little "get well" verse made up just for Katrina!

Ingredients:  Stampin' Up cardstocks: Blushing Bride, Soft Sky, Very Vanilla.  Iralamija Music Notes digital paper.   Darice Opulent Opal Glitter paper.  Currugated paper: DCWV sask.  MFT dies: Corners (modified).  Paper Smooches die: Get Well.  Papertrey Ink die: Large Scallops.  Accu-Cut die: Bird.  Stampin' Up Pearls.   Hug Snug seam binding ribbon. Computer verse (Fonts: DaddyO 14/ Shelley 10.5).  Size: 4-3/4" x 6".  

Wednesday, August 10, 2016

A Sister-in-Law Vintage Birthday in August!

I have sister-in-law number FIVE to prepare a birthday card for in the month of August.  I was in the mood for a vintage birthday card, and I was excited to begin.  It seems I take spells where I must do some vintagey stuff or bust!  I had to hurry, because my husband is making a trip south to a family get-together and this particular sister-in-law will be there all the way from Kansas.  Unfortunately, I will not be able to travel with him because of some previous commitments made before we knew this get-together was going to take place.  But, here was a chance to hand-deliver this birthday card. . .I would not have to worry about weight and bulkiness due to postal limitations!  I was stoked, and I got to work immediately!  Take a look at my finished vintage birthday card just for Joanie!

Ingredients:  Stampin Up cardstock:  Basic Black, Very Vanilla, Pretty in Pink (retired).  BoBunny: Love & Lace (rose pattern).  Punches: Becky Corner Rounder, EK Scalloped Corners, WRMK Deco Corners.  Dies--Spellbinders Scallop Hearts.  SU: Metallic sequins, Gold Embossing powder. Stash: Crochet Flower, Black lace, Vellum.  Computer sentiment/ verse.  Size: 4-3/4" x 6".  (Note: Flower sequins tied into a sequin knot with needle/thread).

Saturday, August 6, 2016

Birthday Rose for a Beautiful Daughter-in-Law

My youngest son's wife has an August birthday, and she became a special addition to our family ten years ago last month.  I wanted to make and send a special birthday card that jumped right out and said, "That's for Ginger!"  As I made this particular card that I chose several months ago at a Liz Thayer card gathering, I loved it right off, and I thought it would be perfect for Ginger because she loves flowers and gardening.  

I finished the stamping, heat embossing, and watercolor painting on the card front at the card event, I decided not to completely finish everything that day, because I knew I wanted to make a few additions and some small changes.  Take a peak at my finished version of the card front, which included adding some iridescent sparkly glitter to the rose petals, as well as my inside design creation below:

Ingredients:  SU products:  Cardstock--Whisper White, Shimmery White (front), Hello Honey, Blackberry Bliss; Stamps--You've Got This; Inks--Blackberry Bliss, Melon Mambo, So Saffron (rose)/ Old Olive, Mint Macaroon (leaves); Dies--Deco Label framelit (inside); White Embossing powder; Silver Metallic Thread; Metal-Rimmed Pearl; Basic Pearls; Dazzling Diamonds glitter; Wink of Stella-Clear; Aqua Painter.  Papertrey stamp: Inside & Out II (inside verse).  Size: 4-1/4" x 5-1/2". 

Tuesday, August 2, 2016

Two Celebrate Their 10th Anniversary!

My youngest son and his wife celebrated their tenth anniversary in late July. . .it's difficult to believe ten whole years have gone by.  It was time to make them a special card to note their special day.  This year I decided on what I call a slightly vintage card style.  I love the vintagey look as long as it isn't way over the top, so my vintage-like cards tend to be low key.  Take a look at what I came up with below:

Ingredients:  Stampin' Up cardstock: Pool Party, Basic Black.  Pattern paper: stash.  Cottage Cutz Expressions word dies.  Bird Silhouette: Silhouette Graphics (PaintShop Pro modified).  Wilton 4-inch Doily.  Prima flower.  Hug Snug: seam binding ribbon (hand bleach/ crumpled).  Computer-made verse.  Size: 4-3/4" x 6".

The Story & Other Tidbits

Following is an explanation on the making of this card as I do not think the picture makes it totally clear.  Just a note to start: each of the layers are approximately 3/8" smaller than the layer below it both in width and height, and I sized and cut all layers prior to assembly.

To start, I cut my aqua cardbase to 4-3/4" x 6" and adhered the smaller black mat layer to it.  Next, I cut the chevron block patterned paper along its zigzag pattern so that it would be shorter than the aqua damask patterned paper that I planned to use as a layer below it.  I adhered these two patterns together so that 1/3 of the damask was exposed above the chevron blocks and 2/3 of the damask would show below.  I then positioned my half doily on the left of this patterned set, folding over a bit of the raw edge to the underside of the papers, and adhered the doily to the patterned set.  I was now ready to pop-up this set of patterned papers onto the black mat layer.  Once all four layers are adhered and popped-up adding the final touches to finish the card can begin! 

I positioned and adhered my black cardstock, happy anniversary die-cut toward the bottom right as shown.  I tied two pieces of the pink crinkled seam binding ribbon into a bow and adhered with a bit of hot glue.  Next, I attached my leaves with mini glue dots, and affixed my rose with a bit of hot glue.  

The final piece for my card front was to make my black silhouette bird family.  I cropped my family from a Googled jpeg-image filled with numerous silhouetted bird types, choosing exactly which birds I wanted to use.  I dropped my cropped image into PaintShop Pro and modified my bird family a bit.  There were two babies in the nest, and I decided I only wanted one, so using the software's tools, I erased one baby and made the nest smaller.  Next, I moved the Mama and Daddy birds closer to the baby's nest and shorten the branches on both side, eliminating a few leaves.  My last step was to save my new jpeg-image and then copy/paste it into a Word document to re-size for my card.  I printed it on white cardstock and fussy-cut it out to adhere to my card front.  

My last step as is traditional in my cardmaking was to finish the inside so that it complimented my card front.  I found the John Keats quote on line, which I love.  I also decided to incorporate my bird family to the inside as well.  I copy/pasted the verse into a Word document, sizing it to fit, and I found the perfect fonts to add the closing happy anniversary sentiment along with my son and daughter-in-law's names.  My bird family was also copy/pasted several inches below the verse.   Once I printed my Word document, I cut it to fit inside the card, distressed the edges, and adhered it inside the card.  I fussy-cut more of the chevron block patterned paper to decorate my verse at the top and bottom.  I think Mark and Ginger will really like their handmade card from Mom along with a dinner certificate for a night out.

Saturday, July 30, 2016

Birthday Greetings to the Tournament Fisherman!

My nephew, Adam, has a July birthday, and I have never made him a birthday card. . .shame on me!!!  I got busy and created one depicting his favorite hobby. . .fishing.

Ingredients:  Recollections Cardstock: Spice Market collection.  The Paper Studio: Wood Fence.  BoBunny-A Gift of Love: Flutter Butter Solid.  Hot Off the Press: Rust/ Black Plaid.  Spellbinders dies:  Labels Three/ #7 (largest).  My Favorite Things: Stitched Circle STAX.  EK Punch: Arrows.  Ink: Memento Desert Sand (fish sponging).  Stampin' Up Dazzling Diamonds Glitter Adhesive.  Fishest free digital image (Google).  Copic Markers.  Recollections: Brads.  Bag O' Buttons: Wood.  May Arts: Fine Twine.  Stash: 1-1/2" Fringed Burlap Ribbon.  Size: 4-3/4" x 5-3/4".

The Card's Story & Other Tidbits

Adam is the oldest of my nieces and nephews, and therefore, my very first nephew.  I remember how excited I was that I would soon be an auntie when my sister announced she was expecting her first child.  Unfortunately, I haven't been such a good auntie, because so far he has never received a personally made birthday card from me.  As I said before. . .shame on me!  So, this one had to be extra special.

Adam's favorite pastime is fishing, a sport he started when he was just a little boy.  Through the years, he has become quite proficient at fishing, so much so that he enters and wins tournaments.  He fishes "catch and release" so those fish will be there another day for him to reel in, and they will be even bigger!  With this in mind, I knew his first card should be all about fishing.

I found quite a funny, big fish digital image that looks like he stole a fisherman's hat and pole, and now he's trying them out for size. . .he would be perfect.  I immediately got all my Copic Markers out, and I set to work coloring him so that he would look something like a rainbow trout.  Though the picture, disappointingly, does not show it off, I added iridescent glitter to my fish to replicate scales, and so that he would sparkle just like a fish just reeled in out of the water.  

This is probably the first time I have colored my digital image before I found the perfect papers to complete my card design.  I always choose my papers first so I know what colors to incorporate in coloring my digital image.  But, in this case, I pretty much knew I wanted to use a weathered brown or grayish woodgrain background.  Maybe like a weathered fence and then some patterned paper to add color and also compliment the woodgrain. . .definitely some masculine-looking paper.  Subconsciously, I think I knew that by coloring my fish resemble a species in the trout family, it would more than likely go with woodgrain paper.

I easily found the perfect brown, weathered-fence paper, and I found the rest of my coordinating papers right away.  Fortunately, they were all in the same are from my California trip.  I love it when it only takes a  minutes to figure out what I want to use.  The idea of using a burlap-type trim popped into my "idea bank" as soon as I chose the papers, and I immediately remembered I had the particular style I used in my stash and that it would be perfect.  

I've used the Spellbinders Labels Three with a masculine digi card before, so thought I would repeat that, but added the idea of cutting out the digi itself with a stitched circle and then using the Labels Three as a mat frame.   I decided on a little tag for the sentiment so that my card design would not be overwhelmed by the sentiment, but yet it would have one.  Since I don't have any little tag dies the right size, I handcrafted my own.  I am so pleased with how it all came together, and I think Adam will really like his first handcrafted card from his auntie!

Tuesday, July 26, 2016

Sending Prayers!

My oldest daughter's husband's father has been diagnosed with cancer, and the prognosis is not looking good.  My husband and I have liked Don's parents from the very first time we met them, so I very much wanted to make and send a special card to let them know they are both in our thoughts and prayers.  Take a peek at what I came up with below:

Ingredients:  Stampin' Up products:  Cardstock--Pool Party, Pear Pizzazz, Silver Foil.  Stamps--Grateful Bunch; Dot for Days (background - retired).  Ink--Memento Tuxedo Black.  Punches--Curvy Corners (retired); 1" Circle; 1-1/4" Scallop Circle; Blossom Bunch.  Embossing Powder--Silver.  1/8" Stitched Satin ribbon--Bermuda Bay.  Baker's Twine--Bermuda Bay (Copic Colored - retired).  Pearls (Copic colored).  Stash:  1" Organza Sage/White Check.  Die--QuicKutz Fancy Scallop Corner (retired).  Computer-made sentiment/ verse.  Size: 4-5/8" x 5-1/2".

Friday, July 22, 2016

My Sister-In-Law July...Number Two's Birthday!

My second sister-in-law birthday in July's card is due.  This one is for my husband's sister, Jeanie, who lives in Colorado.  Her card was one that I decided upon and set aside after I finished it at my Mt. Shasta Cardmaking Girls' Get-Away.

Ingredients:  Stampin' Up products:  Cardstocks--Blackberry Bliss, Old Olive, Whisper White, Gold Glimmer.  Pattern: Wildflower Fields dsp (2016 SAB).  Stamps--Friends & Flowers (2016 Occasions); Perfect Pairings (2016 SAB).  Inks--Blackberry Bliss, Old Olive.  Punches--Festive Flower Builder; Curvy Corner Trio (inside/ modified).  Wink of Stella-Clear.  Metallics Sequins.  (Thank you to Luci Kirschbaum for her original design inspiration).  Size: 4-5/8" x 5-3/4".

The Card's Story & Other Tidbits

The original card design belongs to Luci Kirschbaum and was presented at a cardmaking event in January of this year, sponsored by Luci and her side-kick, Dara Peterson.  It was a delight to be able to take a look at the new Occasions mini catalog and the Sale-A-Bration Freebie brochure.  Luci's card design uses stamp sets from both of these publications, and though simple, it is eye-catching and very appealing.  I just love the color Blackberry Bliss, and I am so sorry to see its two-year availability culminate at the end of May.

I finished off this card at my Mt. Shasta get-away in May and decided it would be ear-marked for Jeanie's birthday.  I had not finished it at the card event in January, because I wanted to add a bit more color as it just seemed too white for me.  My solution was to add two mat color layers:  the new Blackberry Bliss cardbase instead of white, and an Old Olive layer.  I also wanted to add some Old Olive leaves to my flower.  

When I added Wink of Stella-Clear to my flower petals to add some sparkle and shine, my stamping ink was evidently not quite dry, so it smeared and filled in the stark white petals with a light, blackberry-sponged look.  I rather liked it; therefore, I did not feel the need to re-make my flower again.  This was one of those moments where a mistake was not a mistake at all, but a happy event.  On that note, I think Jeanie will be very pleased with her homemade birthday card.

Monday, July 18, 2016

Remembering Sister on Her Birthday!

I wanted to make a special birthday card for my sister, Heidi, to go with the little Brighton Sister necklace I left with Mom to give to her on her birthday.  This is what I came up with:

Ingredients:  Stampin' Up products:  Cardstock--Old Olive, Soft Sky; Pattern--Irresistible Yours (2015 SAB) sponged.  Stamps--Butterfly Basics (including sentiment).  Inks--Soft Sky, Mossy Meadow.  Ribbon--3/8" Stitched Satin-Mossy Meadow.  Dazzling Diamonds Glitter.  Pearls.  Other products:  Stamps--Jillibean/ Butterflies (inside verse).  Memory Box dies:  Cascadia Butterfly Trio (solid-large); Leavenworth Butterfly Trio (filigree-large).  EK Scallop Corners-Medium.  (Thank you Liz for the original design to case.)

The Card's Story + Other Tidbits

I made a card with almost the same colors at Liz Thayer's January 30th STAMP-A-LOOZA in 2015.  She demonstrated how to make patterned paper with the stamps included in the Butterfly Basics set.  She also introduced the Sale-A-Brations Freebie flyer with the lovely Irresistible You, pre-embossed, white, patterned papers, and she showed us how this paper could be sponged with inks to change their color.  I loved the ideas and wanted to incorporate them into a card similar yet different, so I cased Liz's card and came up with my own version.

My first step was to make my three-pattern paper, using the little netting background, the postmark, and the lacy butterfly stamps from the Butterfly Basics set, stamping with Soft Sky ink on White cardstock.  I needed to make enough of this patterned paper for my two layered panels.  In addition, I needed to make the one-pattern paper shown above the ribbon, using only the netting stamp with Soft Sky ink on White cardstock.

Next, I cut the Irresistible You white pre-embossed scallop patterned paper large enough for my bottom panel below the ribbon.  I sponged this piece with Soft Sky ink and voila the paper became Soft Sky in color and the scallops popped!  I fitted the Soft Sky netting pattern to the Irresistible You sponged scallops along the narrow sides and Scotch tapped them tightly together on their back all along the center seam.

I cut a strip of the Mossy Green ribbon and applied it to the front across this horizontal seam, overlapping the ribbon over the cardstock edges and taping on the back.  Toward the right side of this horizontally adhered ribbon, I inserted another piece of ribbon vertically, tied a tight knot, and clipped the ribbon ends in a vee or fishtail shape.  I matted this panel to a piece of Soft Sky cardstock.

I cut my homemade three-pattern stamped paper into two panels.  With Mossy Green ink, I stamped one panel with the happy birthday sentiment, and the other with the fern stamp, all from the Butterfly Basics set.  I matted each of them with Soft Sky cardstock.  I used two Memory Box butterfly dies:  the solid butterfly die for the base, cut in Soft Sky cardstock, and the filigree lacy butterfly for the top layer, using white cardstock, to which I applied glue and sparkly glitter.  After the glitter dried, I adhered these two butterflies together and finished off with the Soft Sky butterfly body and pearls.

I adhered the happy birthday matted panel directly to my card front.  Next, I popped the fern panel a bit left of center as shown on the card.  The final step for the card front was to adhere my glittery little butterfly next to the fern, but only on the underside along the center of his body, leaving his wings free and unglued.

My traditional final step for all my cards is to design a complimentary inside to the card with a verse appropriate for the occasion.  I found the cute little Jillibean sentiment about glitter and thought it was perfect to stamp it onto a piece of Soft Sky cardstock in Mossy Green ink.  Below this verse, I repeated the Butterfly Basics happy birthday sentiment that I used on the card front.  The scallop corners are made by stamping the Butterfly Basics lacy butterfly stamp with Mossy Green ink onto white cardstock and punching out four corners from those stamped butterflies.  To finish off my corners, I applied glue and sparkly glitter. . .after all it's all about leaving a trail of glitter!  I think my sister will be pleased with her birthday card, made with just her in mind.

Friday, July 15, 2016

Cousin Junie Celebrates Her 81st Birthday!

It's time to get a birthday card together for my oldest cousin, Junie, who celebrates her birthday in July.  I think she is going to be 81 this year, and here is the card I prepared just for her.


Ingredients:  Stampin' Up Cardstock: Whisper White, Baja Breeze (retired).  Patterns:  K&Co. Travel Pad (blue vine); My Minds Eye: Fine & Dandy-Tickled Pink - Radiant (brown-scallop trim), Delicate (pink-flower), Pretty (green-leaves); Stampin' Up 2010-2012 In-Color pad/ Blushing Bride print.  Papertrey Ink Stamp/ die: Delightful Dahlia (stamped on printed papers).  Die: Sizzlits: Lots of Tags #1; Sizzix: Ornate Labels (medium oval/ shortened); Papertrey Ink: Large Scallop Border.  Punches: EK LG Scallop Corners; Stampin' Up Scallop Trim Corner (retired).  Stash: Crochet lace, Brown pearls, button, baker's twine.  Size: 5-1/2" square.  (Thank you Heidi Gonzales/ My Lil' Scrap Corner for the original design idea).

The Card Story & Other Tidbitds

This card design was one my sister's (Heidi Gonzales/ My Lil' Scrap Corner) that she introduced as a set of three small cards in a class when she owned her scrapbooking store in Redding, CA way back in January 2011.  I took a picture of the card samples while visiting that following spring.  I also bought several of the papers she used while making her cards and was able to stamp my own flower and leaves with her Papertrey Ink stamps/ dies, but didn't get around to completing the card while visiting so it went into my to be done later unfinished stash, and there it resided for the past five years!

I still have this ongoing goal that I will eventually get out all these card kits, card parts and pieces, unfinished, partially finished or whatever state they are in and finally get them made up into finished card so they are ready to use for just the right occasion.  Therefore, I pulled out my picture of Heidi's card design and the papers and pieces attached to make up a somewhat similar card for Junie's birthday.  This many years later, some of the papers had gone astray, so I completed my card with some of my own paper additions.  The My Mind's Eye papers noted in the Ingredients are all the ones used in Heidi's original design.

Of course, I had to make some modifications for my card version just to make the card more me, and because as you may have read in a past blog post. . .I like larger than A2-sized cards.  With that said, I did indeed enlarge my card's design and made it into a 5-1/2" square card instead of the smaller rectangle.  Rather than stamp the front sentiment directly onto the bottom pink panel, I decided to add a popped-up tag with a new and different sentiment.  I also added some pearls for a bit more embellishing.   I then finished off the inside with a complimentary design and came up with a little birthday verse that I completed and printed from my computer.  I think cousin, Junie, will be pleased with her card.

Tuesday, July 12, 2016

A Son-In-Law "Born to Ride" Motorcycle Birthday!

My daughter, Michele's husband has a birthday in July.  One of his big-time hobbies is riding his big, black Harley Davidson motorcycle whenever the weather is ready for him to meet the road.  I wanted to use my new Stampin' Up stamp, One Wild Ride, especially for his birthday, because there is an excellent vintage-looking, big, black motorcycle in this stamp set, in addition to great sentiments, such as the one I chose, Born to Ride.

Ingredients:  Darice cardstocks: Midnight Black; Kraft.  Darice Core-dinations: Patterned Cardstock-Neutrals.  DCWV Stacks: Foil/ Gold; Glitter Cardstock/ Black.  Darice Embossing Folder: Diamonds.  Ink: Memento Tuxedo Black; Versamark Watermark.   Stampin' Up products: Stamps--Born to Ride; Die--Sunburst Thinlit; Clear Embossing Powder.  EK CardCreator Corner Punch: Basketweave.  May Arts: Jute Fine Twine.  Kaiser Pearls: Black.  Computer-made verse.  Technique: Fussy-Cutting.  Size: 5" x 6".

The Card Assembly Story
My first step was to cut a 10" by 6" piece of black cardstock and crease and fold in half to form a tent-style cardbase.  Next, I cut a piece of gold foil 4-3/4" x 5-3/4" and texture-embossed it using the Darice Diamonds embossing folder.  This embossed gold foil was then adhered to the black cardbase, and set aside.

My second process was to die-cut two Sunburst designs. . .one in the Kraft patterned paper and one in the Black Glitter paper.  Instead of sitting them evenly on top of one another, I twisted them just slightly to allow the black glitter paper to peek out just under the edge of the pattern about 1/8-inch and adhered them together while in this "twisted fashion."  The edges of the rays will be uneven at this point, and and will need to be trimmed straight to the size you desire.  Mine are cut to 4" x 4-3/8" and trimmed so that the rays are as closely centered as possible.  I then cut a piece of gold foil the same size and adhered it to to the sunbursts to become their underlying mat, and now the gold foil shows through as rays as well.  I then cut a piece of black cardstock mat 4-1/4" x 4-3/4" and adhere it as the base mat for my sunburst set of papers.  This sunburst set was then popped up off the cardbase mats already prepared and adhered together in the first step above.

I wanted my vintage motorcycle to be black embossed, but I found with so much black in the image, it became muddied and unclear.  Following is what I found I could do to achieve a black embossed motorcycle using my MISTI stamping tool. 

First, I place my cardstock in the MISTI and aligned and mounted the motorcycle stamp onto my MISTI all according to the tool's directions and then inked up the stamp with Memento Black Ink.  I found that I needed to re-ink and repeat stamping the image at least three times to get a rich, black impression.  Second, while leaving my stamp adhered perfectly on my MISTI where originally placed, I cleaned off the black ink.  Next, I inked up the stamp with Versamark Watermark Ink and re-stamped over my image, repeating inking and stamping two times with the Versamark.  

The last step to finish the card front was to heat emboss the motorcycle by applying clear embossing powder to the wet Versamark ink and dusting off cleanly before heating.  I applied this same process to the "Born to Ride" sentiment.  After applying my twine, and I fussy-cut both the motorcycle and the sentiment, and popped them up off card front.

My final step, as is my cardmaking tradition, was to create an inside design and birthday verse that complimented the card front and the occasion for which it is to be given.  My verse was completed using my computer and printer.  I think Don will be very pleased with his motorcycle card!

Friday, July 8, 2016

A Visit That Was Special...!

A card to let my brother and his wife know just how glad I was to visit with them while vacationing in California.

Ingredients:  Stampin' Up products:  Cardstock--Chocolate Chip, Cherry Cobbler, Crumb Cake.  Red Glimmer paper.  Stamps--Gorgeous Grunge, Chalk Talk (sentiment).  Ink--Early Espresso, Cherry Cobbler.  Punches:  Small Heart; Heart To Heart-small (retired).  Other products:  Dies--Spellbinders Nested Hearts-smallest.  EK Slot punch.  Zutter Corner Rounder.  May Arts: Twine.  3/8" Striped Ribbon.  Washi Tape.  Size: 4-5/8" x 5-3/4".

The Card's Story & Other Tidbits

My Mom and I traveled to Nevada City, California to visit my brother Mike and his wife, Diane.  I wanted to send a homemade thank you to let them know just how much I enjoyed my visit.  I chose a card for them that Liz Thayer presented at a card class over two years ago.  I made a few changes to Liz's original design, as I thought it needed more color and a bit more embellishing.  I added a new cardbase color layer and tag layer in Chocolate Chip, and to the Cherry Cobbler Gorgeous Grunge lines, I also added Early Espresso stamped lines to the Cherry Cobbler stamped lines.  I popped on a few extra red glitter hearts.  I liked my additions and think Mike and Diane will be surprised and happy to receive their card.

I had not seen Mike for over two years, and because of Diane's illness and recovery, they were not able to make their planned trip to Redding early on in my visit.  So, what to do. . .we went to them with clear instructions. . .no elaborate planning for meals. . .a pizza, a late lunch out after church, leftovers, and a good-bye brunch out at the Humpty Dumpty, my treat would do very nicely.

Mike has just finished his 1951 Chevy coupe, which is a beautiful car.  But for Diane's illness, he would have been showing it off at Redding's Cool April Nights.  Here is a quick peek at a lot of hard work. . .no wonder he has arthritis in his hands!


Mike provided us with a quick trip up Hwy. 49 to visit the area my father grew up in, Pike, which has a population of about ten if that.  The property is still there with a family-owned trailor, but the old homestead burned down several years ago.  I remember visiting the old homestead as a little girl when Dad's family went deer huntingdirt logging roads, no lights, and no plumbingquite the adventure!

My Mom and I were able to make a trip to the Folsom Premium Outlets to visit the Sketchers Store, which Mom had been wanting to do for over three years.  From Mike's house, it was only an hour drive each direction, rather than the three-hour trip each direction from Redding.  We both found several pairs of Sketchers we absolutely could not do without. . .shoes, give me more shoes!  We had a delicious late lunch at Chili's, which neither of us had eaten at since Mom left Arizona about ten years ago!  All in all, it was a great day, the weather was balmy in the mid-80s,  and we enjoyed ourselves a lot.

Our nights were filled with playing Mexican Train, our family game that my Mom enjoys a lot.  She generally wins for some reason, but this time Mike took it home!  The leisurely pace of this game allows time for lots of catching up, great conversations, and a lot of joking around as well.   It was a great visit, and I hope to do it again on my next trip down to visit Mom.