Wednesday 31 December 2014

A painful end to 2014

If you follow my blog then you've become accustomed to seeing new posts several times a week.  That hasn't been happening lately, has it?  Well there are reasons, besides the Christmas rush and all the visiting and celebration that comes with the time of year.  On Christmas Day, while helping my daughter finish up Christmas dinner by making the gravy, I had an altercation with the roasting pan lid and it won.  I lost and came away with some nasty burns along my hand and wrist.

I've made a couple of cards since then.  I've posted them.  It has taken more time than I'm used to simply because I'm right handed and the burns are on my right hand and wrist.  I hate burns.

Luckily there have been no infections.  The blister on my wrist unfortunately opened and will most likely scar but I'm not vain.  I can live with that.  The one closer to my thumb is slowly diminishing and as a result the painful pressure is also diminishing and I can type so much more easily.  I should also be able to get back to the card-making I love.

Before Christmas I was contacted by someone I had never met before.  She had a group of ladies who were expecting to attend a stamp-a-stack.  Their Demonstrator had suddenly become unavailable and they found me through my DBWS (online store).  I had never attended a stamp-a-stack or done one but I knew the concept because I'm curious and had asked about them before.  I had five days.  Before I got back to them I checked my cardstock and supplies.  Remarkably I had enough.  And so I agreed to do the stamp-a-stack.  They already had the venue and it would cost me nothing.

Somehow I designed five cards and cut up sufficient cardstock and Designer Paper for eight people.  That took longer than I anticipated but I was ready to roll and travelled to a nearby town for the event.  I'm going to share the cards that we made with you.

For this one I used the Tim Holtz trees embossing folder.  Along with the stag from the retired Winter Post stamp set and the sentiment from the retired Greetings of the Season stamp set, this made a very elegant card.

If you look closely, I've used my Lucky Stars embossing folder on the Pacific Point before cutting that oval into the front of the card.  The sentiment from the Christmas Bliss stamp set is absolutely perfect for this card.

The ladies caught onto the masking technique quickly.  I was proud of the way everyone's cards turned out.  The retired Christmas Lodge stamp set works beautifully with the Holiday Home stamp set, doesn't it?

For this card I had no choice but to use non-SU! Designer Paper.  I simply didn't have sufficient on hand for a good background.  Everyone loved cutting out the moustache and attaching it with Dimensionals.

This card took the most work and I wound up with my entire container of Irridescent Ice embossing powder used up by the time eight people had each made 4 of this card.  (That adds up to 32 cards.)  After stamping the Whisper White with the snowflakes, they had to brayer it completely using Versamark and then covered it with the Irridescent Ice to heat emboss it.  Yes, it made a sparkling, wonderful background, but it was messy work and took the longest of any of the cards.

It went extremely well.  Everyone loved the diversity of cards and techniques.  There were treats, laughter, and all-in-all it was a hugely fun evening.  Exhausting but fun.  

I hope you'll all have a wonderful New Year's Eve and celebrate a fitting end to 2014!  Cheers!

Sunday 28 December 2014

Something to be thankful for --- SFF122614

Without question, this year's Sale-a-bration products are outstanding.  I've used three for this card and expect to use more with my next card.  The choices are simply terrific!

I've used two of the stamp sets in the Sale-a-bration brochure:  Lotus Blossom and You Brighten My Day.  The latter is a wood mount---I chose wood mount simply because it's so much easier than continually mounting my stamps onto an acrylic block.  The Lotus Blossom set, however, is Photopolymer and is a three-step stamp.  It would be so much more difficult to do the necessary lining up of each stamped layer if this were the regular rubber stamp.  Don't get me wrong, I love rubber stamps but in this instance, the Photopolymer rocks.  When I stamped my flower, I first stamped with the piece numbered "1" (handy, huh).  I used the Calypso coral because it compliments the Crushed Cantaloupe I planned to use for the other two layers but is considerably darker.  Then I used the full Crushed Cantaloupe ink colour for my #2 piece and for the #3 piece, I also used that colour but first off-stamped it once.  That gave me the lightest of the three colours.  The result is amazing!

The other Sale-a-bration product which I've used with this card is the gorgeous Irresistibly Yours Designer Paper which looks like Whisper White cardstock heat embossed with White Embossing Powder.  That allows you to either spray the paper with your Stampin' Spritzer and choice of ink colour or, as I chose to do, sponge the ink directly onto the paper.  The embossed design stands out and stays white.  It's a wonderful product and I plan to get more as one of my Sale-a-bration rewards with my next order.  Wait till you try it, you'll be hooked, too.

The colours I used for the card are Naturals White (base), Blackberry Bliss, Whisper White, Calypso Coral, Crushed Cantaloupe, Old Olive, and Mossy Meadow.  They worked beautifully for the sketch offered by the Sketch Frenzy Friday Challenge.


I changed out the circle for the cute Note Tag Punch that coordinated perfectly with the sentiment that I stamped using the You Brighten My Day stamp set.  The white heat embossing really pops against the Blackberry Bliss cardstock, doesn't it?  Even with the shape difference, it's very clear that my card follows the sketch.

For more cards using this sketch, check out the Sketch Frenzy Friday Challenge.

Friday 26 December 2014

Hello Kookaburra --- PCCCS #124

As you know, I enjoy challenges, especially the ones over at the Paper Craft Crew Challenges.  This week's sketch is no exception.  I love square cards and this sketch was perfect for that.

Paper Craft Crew Card Sketch 124 #papercraftcrew #stampinup #cardsketch #papercrafts

Since Christmas cards are a done deal now and since I've received my pre-order of products from the new Occasiona Catalogue and Sale-a-bration brochure, I'm itching to use some of them.  Your turn will come on January 6th when both the catalogue and Sale-a-bration begin for customers and I'm sure you'll love what I have to show you today.

There is an absolutely terrific Specialty Designer Series Paper in the Sale-a-bration brochure that is also very versatile.  It's called Irresistably Yours and what makes it so terrific is that it is all white.  It is also only one-sided.  By now you're wondering why I keep saying this paper is so terrific, right?  Well, it is all white but when you hold it so that the light catches it, you can see that it has a shiny white pattern on it.  Six different patterns, in fact, over 12 pages which means you get two pieces of each design.  Because the pattern is shiny, like white embossing on Whisper White, you can use a sponge or a sponge dauber to put your choice of coloured ink over the paper and the white pattern will stand out against the colour.  How sweet is that?

For my card I used a sponge dauber and Hello Honey ink so that the piece would compliment the Park Lane Designer Series Paper which I used in combination with it.  I also picked out the Soft Suede in that pattern for one of my layers of cardstock.

For the banner shape I used more Soft Suede as my bottom layer and then on my Whisper White layer, stamped that adorable Kookaburra from the A Happy Thing Sale-a-bration stamp set.  All the time I made this card that Kookaburra song kept repeating itself in my head.  Funny the things you remember from grade school!

Just for some added interest and texture, I used the retired Cloudy Day embossing folder to emboss the area on the banner just above the Kookaburra and then sponged over that with some Coastal Cabana ink and then lightly sponged the lower area with Pear Pizzazz ink.

I love the way the Kookaburra stands out and yet is part of the card because I've used Hello Honey ink on him as well.  It was a fun card to make and I'm happy to have met another challenge.

For more cards using this sketch, check out the Paper Craft Crew Challenge.

I've also entered my card into the Sunday Stamps Weekly Challenge, although I've interpreted the colours as Hello Honey, Coastal Cabana and Soft Suede.

Wednesday 24 December 2014

Merry Christmas!

It's that time of year when I like to wallow in all the good wishes sent my way and that I send out to people.  That type of "wallowing" just makes my heart swell with happiness.  It truly is "the most wonderful time of the year".  Not because of the presents.  It's such a wonderful time of the year because it usually brings out the very best in people.

I was late getting to the little tree that I decorate up just for me in my Crafting room.  I've already got the big tree in the bay window of the living room but I do enjoy having one set up to light up my little room.  If you thought my tree would be hung thick with all sorts of home-made decorations, you'd be wrong.  I found some decorations that really appealed to me and they grace the branches of my little tree.  They're more rustic, more old-fashioned, and make me feel good.  I don't keep a tidy room but I enjoy making it special this time of year.

Those little craft-store birds were irresistable and I had to have them.  They're made of pinecones and many have little Santa hats on their heads.  I guess what I love about them is that they remind me of 3 Mile Bend, a nature reserve that is also an off-leash dog park.  My daughter and I love to take her giant dog there (he romps like the puppy he isn't any longer) and we usually bring critter food and suet packs for the birds, bunnies and squirrels.  This time of year, especially, we like to share our bounty with the woodland creatures and added another bird feeder to the area yesterday.

My cats, too, are enjoying the changes to the house this time of year.  My long-haired Siamese, Mei Li loves to bed down on the tree skirt in the living room.  Both she and Khali Kho, my tortoise shell rescue, love sitting up on their cat-tree, watching the lights of the Christmas tree.

What I love best about the card-making which I discovered three years ago, is the opportunity I've had to connect with so many people.  I have come to know fellow crafters all over this wonderful world of ours and am so grateful for that.  To all my friends out there, whether you're my customer or a fellow crafter or both, Merry Christmas to you and yours.  I wish I could give each and every one of you a hug but these words will have to do.

I am so grateful for all that I have.  I am so happy that I can share my bounty with others.  I love this time of year and I love you all.  Merry Christmas, everyone.  I hope yours is warm and filled with friends and family.  God bless us---every one!

Monday 22 December 2014

Keeping it simple

It's that time of the year when you begin wishing for simplicity.  At least I do.  With all the holiday preparations and all the cards that get made this time of year I reach a point where I want the fancy stuff to end and the simple stuff to begin.  Maybe I can't do that for my life at the moment, but I certainly can manage this for my cards.

What could be more simple than white on white?  Add a "pop" of colour and it's done.  Well, maybe it's not quite that easy, but almost.  I began with a base of Whisper White.  Then I added a smaller rectangle of Whisper White that I first embossed using my Lovely Lace embossing folder.  The intricate pattern of that embossing folder makes the white layer stand out against the white base.

Before attaching the embossed piece, I stamped the base with two of the stamps from the Gorgeous Grunge stamp set using Blackberry Bliss ink.  Then I stamped the sentiment from the new Painted Petals stamp set also using Blackberry Bliss ink.  After attaching the embossed piece, I scattered a few Rhinestone jewel embellishments and the card was done.

For more cards that are white with a pop of colour, check out The Paper Plunge.

For more cards using this sketch and having only a base plus one layer, check out The Friday Mashup.

PCCCS #123 --- Thinking of You

I fell in love with the Moon Lake stamp set the moment I saw it.  The realism is what appealed to me and I ordered it as soon as Stampin' Up! opened up the pre-orders from the 2015 Occasions Catalogue.  I knew I would use it for the sketch at the Paper Craft Crew Challenges.  I could see the finished card in my head before I even inked up the stamp.

Paper Craft Crew Card Sketch 123 #papercraftcrew #stampinup #cardsketch

I wanted a break from all the Christmas cards that I've been creating (and writing) and so I turned to the Designer Paper that was the least like Christmas paper, the beautiful Gold Soiree Specialty Designer Series paper.  I mixed that up with a piece of complimentary polka dot Pistachio Pudding paper from the 2013-15 In-Colours Designer Series stack.  The results were as great as I had hoped.

I began with a base of Naturals White followed by a layer of Garden Green.  I topped that with the two Designer papers.  Then I took a base of Calypso Coral and added a stamped piece of Whisper White.  I coloured the images with my Stampin' Markers and sponged the sky and grass.  Then I added the layered piece to the card using Dimensionals.

I stamped two flowers from the Petite Petals stamp set onto Whisper White using Crushed Cantaloupe ink and one using Calypso Coral ink.  Then I cut them out with the matching punch and glued them onto the layered piece using Tombo.  I added my sentiment centred across the flowers using Dimensionals.  It, too, was from the Moon Lake stamp set and I used Garden Green ink and then added a mat of Garden Green as well.  

My final touch was a bow tied with a combination of Crushed Cantaloupe and Pistachio Pudding Thick Baker's Twine, attached with two glue dots.

For more cards using this sketch, check out the Paper Craft Crew Challenges.

Friday 19 December 2014


I love the sparkle of gold or silver ornaments in the tree.  They catch the lights and multiple their shine.  That's what I thought of when I saw the inspirational photo at the Around the World Stampin' Up! Challenge:

I decided to use the Ornamental Pine stamp set for that wonderful pine branch .  That would be my piece of Christmas tree.  I began with a base of Mossy Meadow onto which I adhered a piece of Naturals White.  Then I took a piece of Cherry Cobbler and stamped it with the Ornamental Pine stamp using Versamark and heat embossed it using White Embossing powder.  After colouring the embossed image using my Blendabilities, I put it through the Big Shot using my Decorative Dots embossing folder.  

I planned to hang an ornament from the pine branch and so I cut a piece of Silver Foil into the shape of a hook.  To make it look as if it really was hanging from the branch, I cut a tiny slit just above the lower branch and then again just below it.  I threaded the hand-cut "hook" through the slots and used Tombo to keep it in place.  Then I adhered the finished piece to the Naturals White.

For my ornament I cut out a circle of Gold Foil using my Circle Collection framelit.  Then I used my retired Keepsake Ornament framelit and cut just the top of the ornament where it hangs from a piece of Silver Foil.  I attached those to the card using Dimensionals, centring the pieces over the "hook".

For the inside of the ornament, I used the   stamp set and Chocolate Chip ink to stamp the old-fashioned image of the family and Christmas tree onto a piece of Very Vanilla.  Then I cut the image out using my Circles Collection framelit.  Before attaching the stamped circle to the Gold Foil circle, I sponged around the perimeter using  Crumb Cake ink.

For my sentiment I heat embossed "sparkle" from the Good Greetings stamp set onto a piece of Vellum using a combination of Cherry Cobbler and Irridescent Ice embossing powders.  Just for fun I cut a ribbon out of Red Glimmer paper and attached it to the top right portion of the pine branch.

For more cards based on the inspirational photo, check out Around the World Stampin' Up! Challenge.

Tuesday 16 December 2014

The sparkle of the stars

There are a lot of stars and star-related products available with Stampin' Up! at the moment.  This card has made use of a number of them.

On top of a base of Naturals White, I've attached a layer of Pacific Point which I first embossed using the Lucky Stars embossing folder.   Then I put the card through the Big Shot using my Ovals Collection framelit to cut out an oval centred on the layered front.  I used Pacific Point ink and that wonderful sentiment from the Christmas Bliss stamp set and centred that in the middle of the oval so that it stamped on the Whisper White which I had attached to the inside of the card.

To carry out the "sparkle of the stars", I added seven stars cut from the Silver Glimmer paper using various sizes of stars from my Stars framelits, the Circle Card thinlits and my tiny Star punch.  To finish up I simply stamped a short greeting from the Good Greetings stamp set on Whisper White cardstock using Pacific Point ink.   I cut that out using my Large Oval punch and mounted it on a piece of Silver Glimmer paper cut with my Scallop Oval punch.

It's quite dazzling in real life and shows off the various stars beautifully.

For more cards that are clean and simple, check out the Christmas Card Challenge.

For more cards that have a Christmas theme, check out The Paper Plunge.

Sunday 14 December 2014

Time for silver! PCCCS #122

It's a marvellously sunny day outside and the snow is dazzling.  I decided to make a card that shines almost as much as that snow and, of course, silver was my first choice.  What could be more fun than last year's silvery Specialty Designer Series Paper and our current gorgeous Silver Foil?

I used Naturals White as my base and then added a layer of Coastal Cabana.  Then I embossed my Silver Foil with the Northern Flurry embossing folder.  For the bottom of that layer I chose the pretty lattice design from the retired Winter Frost Specialty Designer Paper.  To cover the join, I used my Dotted Scallop Ribbon Border punch to cut a piece of Coastal Cabana and then glued a piece of the 1/8" Silver Ribbon along the centre.

For the centre, I used Deco Labels Collection framelits to cut some Bermuda Bay, Coastal Cabana and Whisper White cardstock and a piece of Silver Foil.  For some of those layers I simply cut around the die-cut piece to make a thin mat.  For the cute little snowman, I turned to the Best of Snow stamp set and then used the Holiday Cheer stamp set for my sentiment.

I love the way the Frosted Finishes embellishment echoes the larger embossed snowflake, don't you?

For more cards that are very fancy Holiday themed, check out The Paper Players.

For more cards with glittering snowflakes check out the City Crafter Challenge Blog.

For more cards using this sketch, check out the Paper Craft Crew Challenge.

Paper Craft Crew Card Sketch 122 for week starting Dec. 16, 2014. #papercraftcrew #stampinup #cardsketch #papercrafts

Thursday 11 December 2014

The Wacky Watercooler December "Best of..." Blog Hop

What do we mean by "Best of..." is the question you may be asking.  Well, for the Wacky Watercooler gang, this blog hop is all about what we consider the best of three things.  First of all we've each drawn a name of a participant and have checked out all the blog hop posts that person has done and decided what we consider the best of those posts has been.  That is project number one.  The next project is whatever we consider the best of the retired products.  Last of all but certainly not least, is what we consider the best of the current products.  All I can say is that for me, this has been one of the most challenging and fun of all our blog hops.  I hope that once you've checked out everyone's post, you'll agree.

Our blog hops run in a circular manner.  What that means is that as you go from one participant to the next, you will, inevitably, wind up at the point where you began.  I hope you'll find the time to check out all our posts.  Once you've finished, you'll have to ask yourself what you think the "best of..." all these things might be for you.

If you've been moving forward through the blog hop, you'll just have seen the wonderful creations by the very talented Marie Green in Oregon.

* * * * * * * * * * 

I drew Christine Giuda's name and was excited to hunt through her Wacky Watercooler Blog Hop posts to see what I considered her "best of...".  It came down to a hard choice.  There were a couple of wonderful creations that I would have loved to CASE but I didn't have the products on hand to do that.  I especially loved her mixed media canvas and plan to try my hand at something similar.  But back to what I actually did decide to choose as her "best of...".  I chose the lovely Spring butterfly card that she created for our March 2014 Blog Hop.

Instead of using Spring colours, however, I decided to make my version of Christine's card more of a wedding card and kept it to a simple white and gold palette.   I was especially happy to make this card because it gave me another chance to use one of my favourite retired stamps, the En Francais background stamp.

I had a lot of fun making this card but you'll notice that I couldn't quite get that wonderful fold to the ribbon that Christine managed.  I also entered this card into the Stampin' Royalty Challenge.

* * * * * * * * * * 

The next "best of..." was just as challenging for me.  There are so many wonderful retired products that I had a lot of trouble getting down to any one "best of...".  I finally decided to make a Christmas card using some of the retired products that I really miss.  For me, they're really the best of the products for this season.  The Core'dinations cardstock was hardly with us before it was gone.  I loved the way it looked after it was put through an embossing folder and lightly sanded.  The Pretty Print embossing folder was one of my favourites and so I used it with Early Espresso Core'dinations and lightly sanded it.  The retired Cannery Set framelit die works well with the retired Holiday Collection framelits for this card as well.  For me, these products are the "best of..." for the holiday season.  I'm glad I had a chance to use them for this card.

The "merry" is cut from Brushed Gold cardstock.  It has a subtle luster that looks simply wonderful.

* * * * * * * * * * 

My final project is for the "best of..." current products.  I love a lot of products but one that is especially dear to my heart is the set of Stars framelits.  I had wanted a die or framelits just like that for quite a while and had written to Stampin' Up! about it.  If you follow my blog, you'll remember all my calculations when I made those 3-D stars last year.  Well, with the Stars framelits I don't have to use my protactor at all any longer.  I can just cut out a star, use a ruler to score the lines and I can make my 3-D stars.  How sweet is that?

For this project I made three different sized stars using the very glittery Dazzling Diamonds Glimmer paper.  Two are solid and one is cut with the largest of the Stars framelits and has its centre cut out with the third smallest framelit.   After scoring the stars and folding them into 3-D shapes, I took the largest one with the star shape cut out and attached a little snowman that I had already prepared out of the Simply Pressed Clay.  (That's another product that I really love to use.)  

Then I connected all the stars to a strip of 1/8" Silver Ribbon using Silver Mini Brads and tied the end of the ribbon into a loop.  

This decoration can be hung from the wall or from a hook in the ceiling.  It sparkles beautifully and who can resist that little snowman?

* * * * * * * * * * 

Well, that's it for my "best of..." projects.  I hope you've enjoyed them.  Your next stop will be with the wonderfully creative Christine Giuda.  You'll remember that she was my "best of...".

If you get a moment, please leave a comment.  I'd love to know what you thought of my creations.

Tuesday 9 December 2014

Santa & Co comes to the rescue! PCCCS #121

Sometimes life gets in the way.  That's been happening to me a lot these last few weeks.  I honestly didn't think I'd make this challenge, especially since I had a Stamp-a-Stack last night and making cards for challenges was the last thing on my mind.  Oh...and, of course, I'm heading a blog hop this Thursday.  But I do well under pressure and that saved me again this time.

I've had a love/hate relationship with the Santa & Co Designer Series Paper from the beginning.  There were some designs that I absolutely loved and some that, quite honestly, I couldn't see myself using.  The gorgeous Marina Mist blue design with all the wonderful snowflakes and the silly snow-people at the bottom of the page appealed to me.  I used the plain portion with the snowflakes on a number of cards and each time had to smile at those snow-people.  Well, this time I didn't stop with a smile.  This time I gave them their moment in the spotlight.

I used my Deco Labels Collection framelit to cut out three of the snow-people and then glued that die-cut to a piece of Real Red.  I carefully cut around the Real Red, allowing a narrow margin for the mat.  The Real Red made the scarf around the middle snowman's neck "pop".  For the base of my card I used Marina Mist and then added a layer of Naturals White on which I had stamped the largest of the splatter pattern from the Gorgeous Grunge stamp set using Marina Mist ink.  I centred the Deco Label die-cut and attached it using Dimensionals.  Then I added some Silver Dazzling Details to the splatter pattern, attached three of the snowflakes from the Frosted Sequins Embellishments and six of the small silver sequins from the same embellishments.

A strip of the Silver Glimmer Paper, a tiny sentiment from the Holiday Home stamp set, stamped in Real Red on Whisper White and matted with Real Red, and the card was done.  It's a simple card but those silly snow-people will delight the recipient.

For more cards using this great sketch, check out the Paper Craft Crew Challenge.

Paper Craft Crew Card Sketch 121 #cardsketch #stampinup #papercraftcrew

If you think the snow-people are adorable, too, and want to get the Designer Paper, just click on my online store and grab it at a discount price while stock lasts.  It's currently being offered in the Year-End Close-Out sale.

Tuesday 2 December 2014

PCCC #120 -- Merry and Bright

The Paper Craft Crew Challenge is  one that I enjoy entering.  Their sketches are awesome and challenging.  This week, however, it didn't look as if I'd be able to enter the challenge.   I've been running back and forth between two houses, sleeping away from home some nights, in order to look after my daughter's house and animals and so crafting has become secondary for the moment.

Paper Craft Crew Card Sketch 120 #cardsketch #stampinup #papercraftcrew

On my last trip home, however, I grabbed several stamps and some cardstock, promising myself that I would somehow design a card.  I had to scavenge a few supplies from my daughter's cupboards, but I did get a card done.  Yay!  The problem is that this computer I'm using at her house isn't reading my SD card.  *sigh*  My plan, therefore, is to get this post completed and then, when I get home tonight, quickly download the photos I've taken and complete the post for submission.  If I don't get home in time---well it's still a card that I'm happy to post.  We'll see how it goes.

My base cardstock is Naturals White.  Then I added a layer of Silver Glimmer paper.  My final layer is a piece of Whisper White which I've heat embossed, sponged and cut with my Confetti Stars punch.  The banner across the punched out stars is heat embossed vellum.  The silver embossing powder has a touch of Dazzling Diamonds embossing powder dusted over it before heating but it doesn't show well in the photo.  I had to keep that sparkle going.

The little banners are tucked slightly under the vellum banner.  The first is a plain Silver Glimmer paper banner, the second is cut from Pacific Point to match the sponged area and dotted with a few cut-out confetti stars, and the third banner is, again, cut from the Silver Glimmer paper but first I cut it with the Confetti Stars punch.  I also added a sprinkling of those confetti stars to the sponged area.

My little snowman from the White Christmas stamp set was stamped using Memento black ink and then masked before all that sponging was done.  I coloured his scarf, har, and nose using my Stampin' Markers.  I love how the star from the Many Merry Stars stamp set  remains white since I heat embossed it using Clear embossing powder.  The final touches are a few rhinestones and my card is done.  I may have had to scrounge for some of the supplies and winged it using what I had on hand, but I love the final result.  I hope you do, too.

For more cards using this sketch, check out the Paper Craft Crew Challenge.

Sunday 30 November 2014

WCC14 --- Greetings to you

Watercooler Challenges

Welcome to the Watercooler Challenge.  This is the last one for this year and the challenge is to create a box, banner, bag or tag.  I wound up making both a box and a tag.  It's just the way it turned out.

If you've followed my blog, you'll have seen a variation of this box before.  I initially created it to fill up with those cinnamon hearts that come out for Valentine's Day.  My husband loves those and I was working on some Blog Hop projects.  And so the little box was created.  It's a variation of my first box which I created using the Scalloped Tag Topper punch.  This box actually closed---which works out well if you're filling it with loose cinnamon hearts I can assure you.  Today's box is just a little bit taller than that first closing box because I'm filling it with Christmas chocolates and they take up more room.

You can find the template and full instructions for the closing box here.  The changes in measurements are as follows:  begin with a piece of cardstock measuring 6 1/2" x 8 1/2".  Along the long side score as shown (2", 4", 6", 8").  Along the short side score at 1 1/2" and 4".  Everything else is the same except that you trim the top tabs that don't have the scalloped edges to 1 1/2".

This is the box top, open and closed:

This is the box closed and decorated up but without a tag:

This is the tag:

This is the box with the tag attached:

I hope you'll check out the rest of the projects for this Watercooler Challenge.  If you'd like to play along this time, just upload your post with our Linky.

Saturday 29 November 2014

Less is More celebrates #200

Celebrating the 200th of anything is a big thing.  Celebrating a blog's 200th Challenge is very big.  There are a lot of challenge blogs out there.  Some make it...some don't.  To make it to the 200th challenge and still have lots of participants is pretty amazing.

The challenge this time is for a celebrations themed week, of course.  I wanted to keep it very simple but still make it a real celebration.  I began with a base of Naturals White and then followed that with a split layer of Pacific Point and Real Red.  Then I added my final layer:  Whisper White which had been stamped, scored and coloured.

I stamped the little bird riding an arrow image from the Hello Love stamp set using black Memento ink and the "celebrate" from the Good Greetings stamp set using Real Red ink.  I coloured the bird with my blendabilities.  Then I used several of my circle framelits and traced around them with my scoring stylus.  Since I had placed my cardstock on my piercing mat, the circles were nice and raised.  For the centre I added a clear rhinestone.

For more cards made with a celebration theme, check out Less is More.

Friday 28 November 2014

Christmas Bliss

Sometimes you run into a snag when you're making a card or entering a challenge.  This card ran into all sorts of snags and finally wound up missing the challenge time completely.  This is its sad story.

I've been running back and forth, looking after our daughter's house while they're gone for two weeks.  I certainly don't mind that in the slightest because I love them dearly, love their animals, and they look after our house when we're gone, too.  This week has been "interesting".  Besides a lot going on in my own life, there has been a horrific storm that pretty well stopped everything in its tracks.  Within the last 30 hours we've had a foot and a half of snow and it's still snowing.  The winds carry the snow off the roofs, causing deep drifts which make walking and/or driving even more of a challenge.  This morning we even lost our internet for a few hours.  Luckily it's finally back on but not in time for me.  Ah well...serves me right for not being an early bird, right?

My card uses that rather comical Designer Paper, Santa & Co.  Believe me, you don't see Santas like this every day.  I decided to take bull advantage of their odd appearance and odd postures.  They are the main focus of my card.  My sentiment simply underlines their oddness.  It's the title stamp from the Christmas Bliss stamp set and is perfect for the card.  I simply added a retired Real Red button and a candy cane cut out with the retired framelits set and the card is ready to give to a friend who will thoroughly enjoy the eccentric Santas.

This sketch is from the Paper Players Challenge which you can view here.

I've entered the card in the Less is More challenge since it features Santa Claus.

I've also entered the card in the Merry Monday Christmas Challenge since it features red, green and white.

Tuesday 25 November 2014

PCCC#119 --- Best Kid Ever

Sometimes it seems there aren't enough hours in the day---or days in the week, for that matter.  Right now I'm between houses half the day because our daughter and family are off enjoying Disney World and the house (and cats) needs attention.  I had doubts that I would get this challenge off the ground, let alone finished in time.

I decided to make a boy's birthday card since I need one anyway and it's a way of getting two things off my "to do" list.  The Boys Will Be Boys stamp set is perfect for very small boys and even "getting closer to double-digit" boys.  After all, robots and legos have an almost ageless appeal.  I also decided to keep to the primary colours simply because they are so bright and happy.

The sketch for the Paper Craft Crew Challenge was perfect for what I had in mind:

Paper Craft Crew Card Sketch 119 #cardsketch #stampinup #papercraftcrew

Instead of spatters, however, I turned to the retired Confetti stamp set for the background.  Those hearts were perfect, especially stamped in the primary colours.  Instead of newsprint I chose to use one of the sentiments from the retired Bring on the Cake stamp set repeated many times and in many directions on my Daffodil Delight cardstock.  The lego pieces from the Boys Will Be Boys stamp set fit perfectly over the "soccer ball" which is actually simply a 2" circle embossed with the Hexagon embossing folder.

For more cards using this sketch, check out the Paper Craft Crew Challenges.

     Stamps used:  Boys Will Be Boys, Bring on the Cake (retired), Confetti (retired)
     Paper used:  Real Red, Marina Mist, Naturals White, Daffodil Delight, Whisper White
     Inks used:  Real Red, Marina Mist, Daffodil Delight, Memento Black
     Tools and Embellishments:  Cherry Cobbler Baker's Twine, Stampin' Markers,
              Big Shot, Decorative Dots Embossing folder, Paper Snips, Stampin' Trimmer

Sunday 23 November 2014

So much for which to be thankful

It's nice to have a day in which we give thanks but I maintain that each and every day is a day to be thankful.  We have so much.  We enjoy such freedoms.  We can be creative to our hearts' content.

I love the colours in the Colour Me...! challenge.  Early Espresso, Soft Suede and Cajun Craze go together so beautifully.  Add in the soft brightness of Very Vanilla and you have a winning combination.  It's been such a busy few days, however, that I began to despair of having a chance to enter the challenge.  Today I stole a few hours.  I have to say, taking those hours and just having the opportunity to create something felt really good.

I decided to use the sketch from the challenge at the Freshly Made Sketches.  The layout was perfect for what I had in mind.

In sorting through some of my retired stamp sets a week or so ago, I had come across the Full of Blessings set and knew I wanted to use it this year.  Its images are timeless and, for this card, could be coloured using the colours in the challenge.  It's always such a boost to the spirits when everything falls into place, isn't it?

I love that the inks can be so many different shades of the same colour when one uses the Blending Pen.  I managed to get the pumpkins and the field to look very real simply with the Cajun Craze ink pad and Blending Pen.  So much for having to use a whole lot of colours.  Simplicity can really work and look great.

For more cards using these colours, check out the Colour Me...! challenge.

For more cards using this sketch, check out Freshly Made Sketches.

     Stamp sets:  Full of Blessings (retired), Project Life Holiday Cheer
     Paper:   Naturals Ivory, Very Vanilla, Cajun Craze, Soft Suede, Early Espresso,
                   Colour Me Autumn Designer Series Paper
     Inks:  Memento black ink, Cajun Craze, Early Espresso, Soft Suede
     Embellishments and tools:  Early Espresso Seam Binding ribbon, Blender Pen, 
                Argyle Embossing Folder, Big Shot, Stampin' Trimmer, Snail Adhesive,
                Dimensionals, Corner punch

Tuesday 18 November 2014

PCCC#118 -- Masculine Birthday

My husband isn't a very sentimental man.  You can imagine, therefore, how I felt when he was cleaning out his drawer and said "I don't know what to do with all these cards you've given me.  They're too nice to throw away."  I was really touched.  He always throws away cards.  Apparently not the ones I make, I've discovered.

His birthday is coming up in a couple of weeks.  Of course I'm making him a card, but this time I want it to be even more special since he doesn't throw mine away.  The sketch at the Paper Craft Crew Challenge was perfect, I decided.

Card Sketch 118

My husband's father was a hunting guide in the Canadian Rockies.  My husband, as a result, grew up enjoying the great outdoors and, of course, hunting.  He doesn't hunt any longer, but still loves pictures of wildlife.  The Walk in the Wild stamp set may as well have been specially made for him.  I decided to feature the moose.

For my base cardstock I decided to use the new Kraft cardstock.  My next layer is Marina Mist and then another layer of Kraft but this time embossed using my Woodgrain embossing folder.  For the narrower rectangle I used a base of Marina Mist and then topped it with a layer of the tree pattern from the Santa & Co Designer Series Paper.  I attached that to the card using Dimensionals. 

For the final small square I used a base of Early Espresso followed by a layer of Whisper White that I first stamped with the moose image and then coloured using a combination of Blendabilities and Stampin' Markers.  I attached the square to the card using Dimensionals.

I wrapped Linen Thread around the narrow rectangle and tied a small bow.  I added two banners, one cut from the Natural Chevron Ribbon and the other cut from the Mossy Meadow Stitched Satin Ribbon.  My sentiment is from the Sketched Birthday stamp set and I finished up with three Early Espresso Candy Dots.

I'm sure my husband will be keeping this card, too.

For more cards using this sketch, check out the Paper Craft Crew Challenge.