Friday, 22 May 2015

FM210 -- Love you always!

The Occasions Catalogue only has a short while left before most of the products disappear.  Most?  Well, yes, most---since some were lucky enough to make it into the Annual Catalogue.  I loved so many of the products in the Occasions Catalogue, especially the beautiful Something Borrowed Designer Series Paper, the White Jute Ribbon, the Sahara Sand 7/8" Lace Trim, and, of course, the Butterfly Basics Bundle.  Luckily a number of those made the jump into the new catalogue.  Yay!

The challenge for the Friday Mashup this week is an absolutely perfect opportunity to use some of those great products I've listed.  Well, all of them, really.  I had such fun with the challenge!  It's been wonderful being a guest designer.


As you can see, the challenge is to use butterflies on a card, or lace on a card, or to mash it up and use both on the card.  You know that I had to mash it up, right?

Using all those products I've already listed, I began with a square base of Naturals White cardstock.  Then I added a layer of the Something Borrowed paper which I topped with a "frame" of Sahara Sand cut on the inner border with the scalloped largest of the square framelits.  If you look carefully, you'll notice that I watercoloured some of the flowers in the Designer Paper using Blushing Bride ink. Again, if you look closely, you'll see that I added a strip of the White Jute Ribbon topped by a strip of the Sahara Sand lace.  It's more obvious in person but gets lost in the photograph.  

The lacy butterflies, of course, are part of the Butterfly Basics stamp set and have been cut out using the matching framelits.  First, however, I heat embossed them using Versamark ink and White embossing powder and Blushing Bride embossing powder.  And finally I tucked flowers behind the White Jute Ribbon.  I had fussy-cut the flowers after stamping a second image with a mask over the first.  The flower stamp is from a brand new set that I was able to order during the sneak peek, You've Got This.

Want to see the whole card?  It could easily be a guy's Anniversary card to his lady or, with a change in sentiments, a Wedding card.  If you know a girly-girl, it could even be her Birthday card.

I hope you'll join us for the fun this week at the Friday Mashup challenge.  I can hardly wait to see your creation.

I also had to enter my card into The Card Concept: Card Challenge.  With a challenge for a card that is frilly and fabulous, I couldn't resist!  I kept it classy and elegant, inspired completely by the lace and flowers.

Wednesday, 20 May 2015

PCCCS145 --- I'm There For You!

I love silhouettes!  There are a number of really great silhouette stamps available in the catalogue.  For this card, I decided to use a combination.  The birds with the nest are from the World of Dreams stamp set while the leaves all over the small background piece are from the Thoughts & Prayers stamp set.  Together, they really compliment each other.

I began with the sketch from the Paper Craft Crew Challenge:

And, for my colour palette, I turned to another challenge, the Sunday Stamps Challenge:

Together, they let me use some wonderful retiring products (Four Feathers stamp set, Feathers framelits, Starburst framelits, Naturals White cardstock and All Abloom Designer Series Paper Stack).  I also used some of my favourite continuing favourites (World of Dreams stamp set, Thoughts & Prayers stamp set, Lovely Amazing You stamp set, Neutrals Candy Dots, Antique Brads, Vellum Specialty paper, and Basic Black, Smoky Slate, Basic Grey, Pool Party and Lost Lagoon cardstocks).

I hope you'll join us at the Paper Craft Crew Challenge this week.

I've also entered this card in the Sunday Stamps Challenge.

Tuesday, 19 May 2015

AW41 -- I'm There for You!

I don't get an opportunity to participate in all the challenges that I would like.  Life gets busy.  We all know how that goes.  Imagine my surprise when I had some time to spare and went back to one of my favourite challenges only to discover that this would be their last challenge.  Life has gotten in the way for most of the Design Team and so the Around the World Stampin' Up! Challenge is closing forever.  I'll miss seeing the incredible designs by their talented team.

This final time they are offering a colour challenge.  Since it is using a mixture of retiring and current In-Colors, I embraced the chance to join the fun.

I decided to make a square easel card.  I had just received my package of sneak peek products from the brand new Annual Catalogue and was "itching" to try some out.   I also used a number of retiring products simply because I will miss them when they're no longer current and love the chance to use them now.  The Windows Collection framelits, for example, have such a unique shape and add so much interest to my card.  

What I love about the easel design is that it really shows off the card.  It stands beautifully on its own and can be placed anywhere.  I've done quite a bit of fussy-cutting for this card.  The butterflies from the retiring Build a Bouquet stamp set, for example, were hand-cut right to their little antennae.  I also added a bit of Dazzling Details to the white area on the wings.  In person, it picks up the light beautifully, glittering in a variety of colours.  The flower is from the brand new You've Got This stamp set and took quite a bit longer to fussy-cut, but the result is worth it.  

Here's my card, folded up and ready for a square envelope.

I hope you'll also join in for the final challenge at the Around the World Stampin' Up! Challenge site.

Sunday, 17 May 2015

WCC24 -- Thanks a Bunch

Welcome to another Watercooler Challenge.  This time it's Stefanie's Sketch Challenge.  I do enjoy creating from a sketch and this one proved to be a lot of fun.  I wanted to feature all the wonderful 2013-15 In-Colors that will be retiring as of June 2nd.  Those five colours will be missed!  There isn't one among them that I didn't enjoy using.

I added in a touch of Painted Blooms Designer Series Paper as well.  The patterns and colours in that paper have been such fun to use.  I'll miss it when the Occasions Catalogue ends on June 2nd as well.  So much is ending.  I could wallow in the sadness that overcomes me as I look around at all my retiring products.  But then I notice the new 2015-17 In-Colors coming in as well as the few stamp sets that were available as a Sneak Peek and I realize that I'm quite a fickle person.  The new products are already making me feel excited and are taking away the feeling of sadness as well.

I have to warn you about the new Ronald McDonald House Charities stamp set which I have used.  It is so versatile and is such fun to use, especially since one can also buy the co-ordinating punch for it.  Excited?  I certainly was when I saw it.  The excitement lasted all the time that I used it for this card, as well.  If a person was just starting out and could just get one stamp, this is definitely one that I would and could recommend.

Don't worry---the burlap ribbon is not retiring.  The stamp set I've used is just being introduced.  The rest of the products, however, are on their way out.  If you want some of the gorgeous stitched satin ribbon, the Beautiful Wings embosslit die for those adorable butterflies, or any of the paper I've used, I'd recommend placing an order quickly before they all disappear.  They are only available while quantities last.

I hope you'll join us at the Watercooler Challenges and link up your own card for this sketch challenge.

I've also entered this card in the SUO fun flowers challenge.

Saturday, 16 May 2015

Retirement Blues --- A Wacky Watercooler Blog Hop

We have the Retirement Blues over at the Wacky Watercooler Stampers Blog Hop and there's no better way to express them than by using some of our very favourite products that made it onto the Stampin' Up! retiring list.  For myself, there are so many wonderful tools, papers, inks and embellishments that I will miss.  Not to mention all the great stamp sets.  Let me know what you think of my favourites.  Are they similar to yours?

As you will remember, if you've wandered through our blog hops before, our blog hop is presented in a circular fashion.  What does that mean?  Wherever you begin in our blog hop, whether you go forwards or backwards through the participants, eventually you will wind up precisely where you began.  I hope you'll take time to visit all the participatings blogs and, perhaps, leave a short message letting us know  what you've thought of our posts.

If you've been moving forwards through the blog hop, you'll have arrived here from the fabulous Marie Green's blog.

* * * * * * * * * *
My first project is a nod to the grads.  The Chalkboard Paper is from the Occasions Catalogue but will be gone when that ends.  I had hoped it would be included in the Specialty Papers in our new Annual Catalogue, but it wasn't meant to be.  The Chalkboard Paper is profoundly black and has a wonderful matte finish.  I love to use it with my white embossing powder to get a real "pop" and the feel of a chalk message.

My background paper makes me think of an old brick schoolhouse.  The realism of the images from the Adventure Bound Designer Series Paper Stack is another thing I will miss.  I've used the various designs very effectively for some of my cards.

I love the way the card opens from the centre and, even with the added graduation cap, there is lots of room left to write.

* * * * * * * * * * 

My next project uses several products that I will miss: the wonderful Argyle embossing folder, the Starburst Framelits, the Feathers Framelits, the Four Feathers stamp set, the Lots of Thanks stamp set and, of course, the beautiful 2013-15 In-Colors.  

For the feathers, I've used Coastal Cabana on the tall one and Baked Brown Sugar on the lighter of the short ones, both stamped on Very Vanilla cardstock.  The darker of the shorter feathers is stamped with Early Espresso on Baked Brown Sugar cardstock (I've used my Chalk Marker to add a bit of white to the feather).  The sentiment, from the retiring Lots of Thanks stamp set, is heat embossed on Sahara Sand using the retiring Early Espresso embossing powder.  

I've cut out three circles using the retiring Starburst framelits, one in Very Vanilla, one in Baked Brown Sugar and the smallest in Early Espresso.  For the largest I used the starburst mask from the Hooray It's Your Day Simply Created kit and sponged it using Crisp Cantaloupe.  I also sponged a bit of Crisp Cantaloupe at the base of each feather.

I went a bit wild taking apart some Burlap Ribbon and blued on strands following the rays  on the largest starburst die cut.  To hold the circles together, I used one of the beautiful Antique Brads.  The background paper is the retired Early Espresso Core'dinations which I've embossed using the retiring Argyle embossing folder and then sanded to expose more of the wonderful pattern.

* * * * * * * * * * 

My first two projects had a bit of a masculine flair.  For my final project I'm taking a giant leap in the other direction.  My Hearts Double Easel card is decidedly feminine.  I chose to use Naturals White as my base and then added Strawberry Slush and Baked Brown Sugar cardstocks.  I also used some of the retiring Champagne Glimmer Paper because it works so beautifully with the tones of the Baked Brown Sugar.  The stamp sets that I used are Good Greetings, Yippee-Skippee, and Build a Bouquet.  I used several sizes of the Hearts Framelits as well as the Hearts a Flutter Framelits.  For my stamping, I used the gorgeous Shimmery White specialty cardstock.  I'm so glad it didn't retire.

The inside of the card with the double portion of the easel closed.

The little double portion of the easel open.

The front of the closed card.

The double easel card standing with both easels open.

My embellishments include the Pearl Jewel Basics, the Itty Bitty Accents Epoxy Stickers and two flowers cut from the Natural Filter Paper with the Spiral Flower Bigz Original die and then sponged lightly with Strawberry Slush ink.  It's a soft, elegant and wildly romantic card.  I hope you love it as much as I do.

I've also included this card in the SUO Challenge as well as the Inspirational Challenge.

* * * * * * * * * * 

Well, that's it for my projects.  I hope you enjoyed them as much as I've enjoyed creating them.  If you get a moment, please leave a comment and let me know what you thought of them.

Your next stop will be with another very talented and creative member of our group, Priscilla Ivler.  I'm sure you'll be amazed with her wonderful projects.

Friday, 15 May 2015

FM209 -- Celebrating Dad

Our challenge for the Friday Mashup this week gave me a lot of ideas but, for some reason, I just couldn't seem to settle for any of them.  Each time I thought I knew what I would create, I wound up changing my mind.  By the third time I had succeeded in becoming very frustrated.  I love doing the mashup!  I enjoy coming up with the two-part creation.  So I just left it alone and let my subconscious work its wonders.  Sometimes that's the only way to go.

Bermuda Bay, Crushed Curry, Night of Navy/Celebrations

I have to say, my subconscious does an awesome job behind the scenes.  Instead of spatters, I turned to stars.  I also had fun with my soon-to-be-retired Word Bubbles framelits.  Actually that's the whole key to the card I made:  I had fun.  The celebration which I chose was Father's Day, the day on which Dad is the star.  

Besides the Bermuda Bay, Crushed Curry and Night of Navy cardstocks and inks, I also used Whisper White and Naturals White.  Besides the Word Bubbles framelits, I also used the Stars Framelits and the Little Letters thinlets.  I cut the letters out twice:  once from inside the Word Bubble and once from a scrap of Crushed Curry cardstock.  I wanted the letters to be inlaid.  Then I had one of those crazy ideas and discarded the Crushed Curry "O" and, instead, carefully cut out an oval in the same size.  Carefully hand-cutting a moustache shape, bow-tie and circle from Night of Navy, I used the pieces to transform the hand-cut oval into a face.  The finishing touch was one of the hats from the Guy Greetings stamp set.  

My background is a multitude of Crushed Curry stars inked onto my layer of Naturals White using a sponge dauber and the Stars mask.  To those I added several Night of Navy stars as well as Bermuda Bay stars.  If you look carefully, you'll see an additional tiny Crushed Curry star on each Word Buffle as well as a tiny Basic Jewel Pearl along the brim of the hat.

It's a fun card which should make the Dad in your life smile.  I know my Dad would smile if he were still with us.

I hope you'll join us this week at the Friday Mashup and show us your version of the mashup challenge.

Wednesday, 13 May 2015

PCCCS144 --- An Open Heart

I had fun with this week's sketch for the Paper Craft Crew Challenge.  It gave me an excuse to use that great feather from the wonderful Lovely Amazing You stamp set.   And, of course, it also gave me a chance to use more of that beautiful Painted Blooms Designer Series Paper.

I began with a base of Naturals White cardstock.  I'll really miss this paper a lot once it's fully retired!  Yes, we'll have heavy-weight Whisper White to use but the natural speckles in this paper give it a lot of character and make it a joy to use.  Since I planned to use the very realistic wren image from the An Open Heart stamp set,  I chose Early Espresso and Soft Sky as my layers.  First I sponged clouds over the Soft Sky using my Craft White ink.  It took a while to dry but I love the subtle results.

For my image I went to town on the layers.  I began with Early Espresso, then a layer of Naturals White, then Wild Wasabi and finally the Whisper White onto which I stamped my images.  I used two of the Window Frames Collection framelits and hand trimmed the rest.

Instead of using a splatter in the background, I turned to the old, retired Up, Up & Away stamp set and stamped the tiny flying birds instead.  They worked well on my "cloudy" Soft Sky.  My sentiment was stamped onto the longer feather from the Four Feathers stamp set.  The little hearts?  Just three chosen from the ones cut from a piece of Strawberry Slush using the Confetti Hearts punch.

I hope you'll join us this week for the Paper Craft Crew Challenge.

I've also added my card to the Just Add Ink Challenge.