Tuesday, January 12, 2016

With Sympathy. . .

My daughter, Jackie, was just married this past week-end, and unfortunately, one of her bridesmaid's lost her mother-in-law (and her two boys' grandmother) just a day before the wedding.  There is no best time for the loss of someone near and dear to us, but I am sadden that my daugther's longtime childhood friend was suffering this loss as she bravely carried on with her duties as a bridesmaid.  She is truly a great and good friend!

I wanted to send our families condolences to Heather and her boys, and especially thank them for finding it possible to still celebrate Jackie's wedding.  Though we would all have understood if they found it impossible to attend, we are so glad they were able to join us.  I kept an eye  out to be sure happier thoughts came their way, and see that they could set aside their sorrow for just a few hours while the celebration of the wedding and reception took place.  Our thoughts and prayers will be with them during this week while they attend to sadder duties on behalf of their loved one.

I decided to put together a sympathy card that used a combination of techniques taught by Liz Thayer at one of her cardmaking and teaching events well over a year ago.  The two techniques used were used:  1)masking & sponging and 2) stamping-off.

1.  First, I determined my finished card size to be 4-7/8" x 5-3/8", and I cut two pieces of Stampin' Up's Shimmer White cardstock at 5-1/2" to be sure I had enough to work with.  I cut a third from a scrap of cardstock to 4-1/2" x 5" to use as my mask.  I die-cut my mask cardstock with a rectangular opening like a picture frame.  Note: if you were going to use only the bottom masked layer as the finished front of your card, you would need to determine the exact size needed for your rectangular picture frame opening.  In my case, I am planning to overlay a top piece of cardstock with an oval cut-out for a framed card front overlaying the finished bottom masked layer, so I just needed to be sure my sponging/ stamping rectangular frame was a bit larger than the would-be oval frame opening. 

2.  I layered the picture frame over that second clean piece of cardstock as instructed above.  You can lightly tape the two exactly place pieces to your work surface with painter's tape or washi tape be be sure it does not move.  Lightly sponge the colors desired onto the underlaying piece of cardstock through the masked "window frame" by starting on the framed mask and moving lightly into the opening.  Repeat colors until you get the sponging effect desired.  For my finished card, I planned to use the same colors Liz used in teaching this technique because I thought they were beautiful together and lend themselves well to a sympathy card:  Crisp Cantaloupe and Pistachio Pudding inks (which are now retired).  

3.  Next is to stamp your desired image onto the complete sponged rectangle where desired.  I am using Stampin' Up's Pleasant Poppies (now retired).  I used my MISTI stamping tool to place my flower stamp exactly where I wanted, stamping in Memento Tuxedo Black ink.   

4.  To complete your stamped image with the shadow effect I used, you will need a few pieces of scrap paper to mask areas you do not want stamped on your sponged area below the main stamped flower image.  I used a few scraps of printer paper scraps.  I chose the parts of the flower stamp I wanted in my shadowed area and inked it up, then stamped-off on scrap paper once or twice depending on how light you want your shadows to be, and finally stamped on my sponged area below my main flower image.  Try a few samples of stamping-off until you decide what works best for you.  

5. The final step for my flower image was to finish off the image with a glimmery sheen.  In this case, I very lightly sponged the Versamark Illuminate Glimmer ink pad, sold by Stampin' Up, which has now been retired, over my completed flower image.  I believe the Illuminate Glimmer is sold in craft stores as Versamark Dazzle Frost and is still available on the market today.

6.  For my own card, I had decided to frame my sponged, stamped-off flower image.  Taking my second pre-cut Shimmer White cardstock, I die-cut an oval from the center of the cardstock, using a Spellbinders Petite Ovals die (#4 oval of 6).  When complete, I stamped my sentiment at the bottom using my MISTI stamping tool and adhered this oval framed layer on top of the finished sponged flower image. 

7.  I cut my Pistachio Pudding cardstock base to 4-7/8" x 5-3/8".  Then, I cut my Crisp Cantaloupe layer so there was 1/8" edge of the Pistachio showing around all edges of the Cataloupe.  I trimmed my Shimmer White framed image layers to allow for a 1/8" Cataloupe edge to show around all its edges. 

8.  My final step was a computer-made inside verse using a combination of several lines from sympathy verses I have composed over the years.  

I love the soft, soothing look of this sympathy card made just for Heather and her boys, and I hope it helps her to know we are thinking of her family in this time of sorrow.  Take a peek at the completed front of my card creations, along with a peek at the finished inside design.

Recipe:  Stampin' Up products:  Cardstocks - Pistachio Pudding, Crisp Cantloupe, (2013-2015 In Colors/ retired) Shimmer White.  Stamps - Pleasant Poppies, Loving Thoughts (retired).  Ink - Crisp Cantaloupe, Pistachio Pudding (retired).  Versamark Illuminate Ink pad (to create image shimmer).  Other products: Memento Tuxedo Black Ink.  Spellbinders die:  Petite Ovals LG (#4 of 6).  My Favorite Things: Oval Stitched STAX (inside).  

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Thank you for visiting my blog. If you leave a comment, it is much appreciated! Have a GREAT day! Carlene (aka Chatterbox)