Wednesday 30 March 2016

WWC61 - Anything Goes!

Watercooler Wednesday

It's time for another challenge and another "good-bye".  Our Watercooler Wednesday challenge is losing one of its original artists, Bev.  I know I'll miss her imaginative creations.

I love "anything goes" challenges.  It's one of those challenges which lets my creativity run wild and free.  There are no parameters to hold me down and force me to work within those guidelines.  Of course, if I'm not feeling super creative, I can always find another challenge such as a colour or sketch, and make a card using those choices as my "jump start".  Or if I'm busy with a workshop or creating make-n-takes, I can use one of them for this challenge.  It's fun to have so many options.

For some reason my creative "spark" went out a few weeks ago.  I've been fighting some sort of invulnerable "bug" that is, so far, leaving my doctors hunting for options.  Me?  I'm just getting tired of being unwell and, like I mentioned, have lost that "spark".  And so I put off making my card until the 11th hour, thinking that inevitably I would come up with something.  Well, I did.  But creating this card took so much longer than usual since I was going at it "sparkless".

Quite a bit of paper wound up damaged and wasted as a result.  May it rest in pieces.

The finished card has a base of heavy Whisper White and then a layer of Tempting Turquoise and another layer of Whisper White.  Using the Balloon Builders stamp set, I stamped a medium sized balloon on Watermelon Wonder cardstock with the same colour ink.  Then I stamped a large balloon on Tempting Turquoise cardstock with the same colour ink.  When the ink was dry, I cut each out using the Balloon Bouquet punch.  After covering each balloon with Crystal Effects, I put them aside to dry.

I took a scrap piece of Whisper White and used sponge daubers to make a wild pattern of colours with Daffodil Delight, Tempting Turquoise and Watermelon Wonder inks.  Once that had dried, I cut out a "hello" and two stars.  I used a stars framelit to cut a smaller star from the centre of the largest star, leaving only a multi-coloured outline.

After using my punches to cut the corners of the Tempting Turquoise and Whisper White layers, I attached them to each other and used Tombo glue to attach the "Hello".  Then I used my stars mask and Stampin' Marker to add Daffodil Delight stars to the open areas of the  Whisper White layer.  After that, I covered the stars with Wink of Stella for a nice shimmer.

The balloons were added using Dimensionals.  The addition to the sentiment (from the Endless Birthdays set) was attached using Fast Fuse.  The stars were attached using Tombo glue and then several Rhinestones finished up the card.

It's a bright and happy card.  For the moment, it is just going into my stash until the appropriate birthday rolls around.  I hope you'll check out the other creations by our Watercooler Artists at the Watercooler Wednesday Challenge.  And after that, feel free to link up your own card or creation for this week's challenge.

I also decided to link up my card for the Sunday Stamps Weekly Challenge which is all about rainbows.  My happy rainbow-coloured stars and "hello" fit right into that challenge, don't they?

Tuesday 29 March 2016

PCCCS188 - Just for You

For this week's Paper Craft Crew Challenge, I decided to use the sketch to create a Mother's Day Card.

PCCCS 161-204-008

It's never too early to make a Mother's Day card since my goal is to inspire people to use some of the same products which I have used in my card and it takes a while for an order to come in.  This card is monochromatic except for the Gold Glimmer Paper as well as the Blushing Bride Glimmer Paper.  All the other papers and inks are Very Vanilla, Smoky Slate, or Basic Black.

I added texture to the card by using the Decorative Dots embossing folder on the Smoky Slate cardstock.  The Gold Glimmer paper of the butterfly wing and the Blushing Bride Glimmer paper of the steam heart from the Cups & Kettle framelits dies add texture as well as does the piece of crochet trim.  I think that the Timeless Elegance Designer Series paper pulls the colours together beautifully.

I hope you'll check out the other cards created by the Design Team at the Paper Craft Crew Challenge.

Thursday 24 March 2016

Happy Easter and Good-bye!

One of my favourite challenges has always been the Friday Mashup.  No, I don't always have time to play along, but those times that I have, I have always wound up with a creation that makes me proud and happy.  Oh, I love a lot of my other projects as well, but I believe that the Friday Mashup has pushed me more than any other challenge and, by pushing me, has helped my creativity to grow.  Why?  Because theirs is a three-part challenge.  There is always an option one and an option two, not to mention option three which is a combination of one and two.  I've always chosen option three.  Why not go for the biggest challenge?

So why am I going on about how much I've always loved the Friday Mashup?  Because this is their very last challenge.  Of course I'm creating a project for it!  Of course I'm mourning inside as I create that project.  This is a challenge that I will truly miss.

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This last challenge is all about Easter.  

option 1 - Create a Project with an "Easter theme or Chicks & Bunnies" 
option 2 - or Create a Project using the above "Sketch
option 3 - or Mash it Up and create an Easter project using the Sketch above. 

For my project, I'm "mashing it up" and am using the sketch to create an Easter card.  I've begun with a base of the heavy-weight Whisper White.  Then I've added a layer of Delightful Dijon and on top of that, a layer of the lovely Sale-a-bration designer paper, Perfectly Artistic.  My diagonal stripes are also courtesy of Sale-a-bration:  the Metallics Glitter Tape in white.

For my focal image, I cut out two squares using the Memory Box Stitched Squares metal dies, one from Crushed Curry cardstock and the other from the wonderful specialty Shimmery White cardstock.  On the Shimmery White square, I stamped two of the images from one of my favourite Easter stamp sets, Heaven Blessed using Basic Black archival ink.  After that dried, I coloured the images using my Stampin' Markers.  Before I mounted my squares onto the base card with Dimensionals, I stamped the sentiment using the same Basic Black ink and the Teeny Tiny Wishes stamp.

It's a bright and happy card---a perfect send-off for one of my favourite challenges.  I hope you'll check out the wonderful cards created by the Design Team for the Friday Mashup.

Wednesday 23 March 2016

WWC60 - Marsha's CAS Birthday Challenge

It's time for another Watercooler Wednesday Challenge and this week Marsha is challenging us to create a CAS (clean and simple) birthday card.  I love clean and simple challenges.  It's fun to see how creative one can be, keeping it very simple.  

I decided to begin with a Whisper White base and from there added a layer of Marina Mist with the upper left and lower right corner cut using the Project Life Corner punch.  My next layer is the specialty Watercolor Paper.  I chose that because it's really one of the best papers on which to watercolor as well as do some heavy-duting sponging.

I cut the top left corner and bottom right corner of the Watercolor Paper using the Curvy Corner Trio punch.  Then I stamped the lovely curved bough of blossoms from the Timeless Love stamp set towards the lower right of the paper using the Archival Black ink.  To the left of that I stamped my sentiment from the Endless Birthdays stamp set using Versamark and clear embossing powder.  Once that was heat embossed, I knew my blossoms were dry and proceeded to watercolor them using Melon Mambo, Marina Mist, Wild Wasabi and Daffodil Delight inks and my Aqua Painter.

While that dried, I cut a scrap piece of cardstock using my 2 3/4" Circle Framelit and used the negative circle space as my mask to sponge over the heat-embossed sentiment using Marina Mist ink and bring colour towards the bough of blossoms.  After sponging, I used my Aqua Painter to blend the colour and to pull it closer to the watercoloured blossoms.  After that I added two rhinestones and my card was done.

I hope you'll check out the cards created for this challenge by the other Watercooler Artists at the Watercooler Wednesday Challenge.   I look forward to seeing your clean and simple birthday card linked up to our challenge this week.

I've also linked up my card to the "Less is More" Challenge from which I continue to be inspired.

And, finally, I've linked my card to the SUO Challenge since my bough of flowers is the closest thing to Spring in my life at the moment (go away, snow!)

Tuesday 22 March 2016

PCCCS187 - The Best Thing

It feels like forever since I've joined the rest of the Design Team for a challenge.  But my vacation is over, my sunburn is peeling, and I'm back at work creating cards.  The sketch for this week's Paper Craft Crew Challenge was lots of fun.

PCCCS164-203 Sketch-006

I decided to use the pretty Sale-a-Bration Wildflower Fields Designer Series Paper and picked the additional colours of ink and cardstock from the colours in the design.  My base is Whisper White and then I added a layer of Calypso Coral which I first embossed using the Softly Falling Embossing Folder.  Then I added a small square of Crushed Curry which I embossed using the Pretty Print Embossing Folder.  The diagonally cut Designer Series Paper pulled the colours together nicely.  And then I added an Old Olive oval embossed using the Spring Flowers Embossing Folder topped with a stamped and sponged smaller oval in Whisper White.  I used the Timeless Textures stamp set and Crushed Curry ink to stamp and sponge the oval and then used another of the stamps in the set and Lost Lagoon ink off stamped once.  For the sentiment I turned to the lovely World of Dreams stamp set using Blackberry Bliss ink.

I hope you'll check out the rest of the Design Team cards at the Paper Craft Crew Challenge and, perhaps, link your own version of the sketch as well.

Thursday 17 March 2016

The Wacky Watercooler March Madness Blog Hop

It's time for another Wacky Watercooler Blog Hop and this one is all about the madness one finds in March.  They don't have that old saying "March comes in like a lion and goes out like a lamb" for nothing.  Think about it for a moment.  How many animals can manage to do a complete metamorphosis into another animal in a month?  How many months can be mild enough for a person to go looking for flowers pushing through the soil and yet also be fierce enough to make even a heavy winter coat seem to thin to keep warm?  It's madness and we're bringing madness to our blog hop by means of fancy folds instead of "normal" cards.  Are you ready for some madness?

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 participating 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 very creative Deborah Smart.  Weren't her projects terrific?

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For my first project I'm revisiting a fold that I haven't used for a while, the "Z" fold.  This is a fun fold which dresses up even the most simple card.  The one I've created, for example, is really just a single layer, for the most part.  Yes, I've added another butterfly on top of the stamped butterfly and I've also added two die-cut circles on the inside of the card, but that's the only layering for this card.  That doesn't mean that all "Z" folds are that simple.  You can add layers and ribbons and lace and endless embellishments.  For mine, however, it was really all about the butterflies and so I had to keep it simple.

If you look closely, you can see that I've cut the butterflies which were stamped with Marina Mist ink onto the single layer of Heavy Whisper White.  I used the matching die from the Butterfly thinlits dies.  I didn't cut the whole butterfly out.  I stopped halfway so that the butterfly could stick straight out while the card could be folded at the halfway point along the butterlies.

I stamped three of the pretty lacy butterflies from the Butterfly Basics stamp set with Versamark on Vellum cardstock and then heat embossed them using White embossing powder.  Attached to the centres of the three blue butterflies, the vellum butterflies are wonderfully dainty.  

For the inside of the card I used the Botanical Builder framelits dies to cut a flower from a piece of Marina Mist and the centre of the flower in Whisper White and also in Old Olive.  For the centre I added a large Rhinestone as well.  I also cut a fern from the Old Olive.  The die-cuts frame the circles nicely and add a nice touch to the butterflies, don't you think?

To finish the card off I sponged Marina Mist and Old Olive ink over much of the remaining white area and then added a bit of subtle stamping using the Timeless Textures stamp set and off-stamped ink.

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For my final card I've turned to another special fold which I haven't used in several years.  This one is the Twisted Fold.  I love this particular fold because it looks very complicated and yet is basically quite easy to make.  You can use both the front of the card and the inside to tuck a little surprise into the folded area, which is like a little slanted pocket.  Since this one is a birthday card for a nine-year-old girl who loves flowers, bling and surprises, I've only used the inside as a "pocket" for a gift card and the front it all dressed up with flowers and a shiny gold butterfly.  

My colours for this card were based on the Designer Paper which I had decided to use.  The Wildflower Fields Designer Paper (from the current Sale-a-bration brochure) has a pretty design of floating Dandelion seeds on Calypso Coral.  Another design which I used from this Designer Paper is basically white with sprigs of Old Olive and touches of Calypso Coral and Hello Honey.

My base cardstock is the Heavy Whisper White which I turned into the Twisted Fold card.  For the top triangle I used a layer of Basic Grey and topped it with the floating Dandelions.  For the bottom triangle I used a layer of Calypso Coral and topped it with the sprigs.  I did that for both the front and the inside of the card.  Then I used the Number of Years stamp set and stamped the floral sprigs using Old Olive and Calypso Coral inks.  For the Happy Birthday I used Hello Honey ink.  The butterfly is cut from Gold Foil.

For the inside of the card I stamped the sentiment from the Number of Years set on the plain white side and then cut a "9" from Basic Grey cardstock using the Large Numbers framelits.  Once I had attached the "9" to the upper triangle, I used Gold Dazzling Details to add little dots all over the Basic Grey.

I know that it won't just be the gift card inside which will make the little girl squeal with delight.

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And that's it for my projects.  I hope you've enjoyed them as much as I enjoyed creating them.  From here you'll be returning to the beginning of the circle again, and another wonderfully creative stamper, Gail Allen.

If you get a moment, I'd love it if you would leave a comment.

Wednesday 16 March 2016

WWC59 - Bev's Colour Challenge

It's time for another Watercooler Wednesday Challenge and this time Bev has provided us with a colour challenge.  But this is no ordinary colour challenge.  This colour challenge is all about the greens.

At first glance I thought "what am I going to do with all those greens!"  My normal inclination would have been to have lots of flowers but with nothing except for greens in the palette, that wasn't going to happen.  And then I remembered that the day after the challenge opens will be St. Patrick's Day.  Who needs flowers?  St. Patrick's Day is all about the foliage.

I began with a card base of Heavy Whisper White followed by a layer of Mossy Meadow.  Then I took a piece of Whisper White and proceeded to stamp all over it with the various greens in this challenge, using images from the Timeless Textures, By the Tide and Awesomely Artistic.  After stamping, I embossed the piece using the Decorative Dots embossing folder.

For The smaller rectangle I used a backing of Crisp Cucumber embossed using the Softly Falling embossing folder and rounded the corners using the Project Life Corner punch.  On a smaller piece of Whisper White I first stamped the foliage from the Awesomely Artistic set using Mint Macaron, off-stamped twice.  Then I used the heart from the Work of Art stamp set to stamp the shamrock using Crisp Cucumber ink.  Before attached the smaller rectangle to the card with Dimensionals, I added a piece of Crisp Cucumber Dotted Lace Trim with another piece of the Lace Trim in Mint Macaron knotted around it.

I hope you'll check out the rest of the Watercooler Artists' creations at the Watercooler Wednesday Challenge.  With all that inspiration, I trust you'll link up your own card and join the challenge.

Wednesday 9 March 2016

WWC58 - Gail's Reflection Challenge

It's time for another Watercooler Wednesday Challenge and this week Gail Allen has chosen a technique challenge.  I love techniques, especially this one.  Gail has decided to challenge us all to include a reflection in our cards.

I love creating reflections.  I know everyone doesn't, but there are a number of ways to create one.  My favourite is to use a piece of acetate (Window Sheet) and, after stamping my image on that I use it to stamp the image below the image stamped on paper.  That way the reflection is the "mirror image" or reverse image that one would expect.  Another way is to use a brayer.  I haven't tried that and so can't really comment on it.  My images have always been beautiful using the acetate sheet.

I decided to create a scene using a combination of stamp sets.  For my background I used the mountains from the In the Meadow set and then I stamped the wonderful Bi-Plane from the Sky is the Limit set above them.   Because I had decided that there would be a lake in the lower half of the card, I had to create a reflection of the mountains as well as of the Bi-Plane.  First I stamped the image of the mountains on a piece of acetate and then quickly lined the image up below the mountains, upside down, and stamped the image from the acetate onto the paper by firmly pressing across the acetate with my hand.

For the Bi-Plane I used the same technique but placed the image of the plane much closer to the bottom edge of the paper so that there would be some distance between the reflection of the mountains and the plane.  I coloured the "real" plane and the "real" mountains vividly and then coloured the reflections of each a bit more lightly.  Because the air would be moving and thus cause ripples along the water, I used my white Gel Pen to create the illusion of ripples across the image of the plane.

Finally I heat embossed my sentiment on Vellum cardstock using Black embossing powder and then cut that out in a scalloped "cloud" shape and used carefully placed glue dots to adhere it to the card.

I hope you'll feel inspired to try your hand at the reflection technique and than link up your card.  For more inspiration, check out the cards created by the other Watercooler Artists at the Watercooler Wednesday Challenge.

Wednesday 2 March 2016

WWC57 - Deborah's Sketch Challenge

It's time for another Watercooler Wednesday Challenge and this week Deborah Smart has provided us with a sketch.

I love all the fancy layering in this sketch.  Some of it even looks as if it has been woven, doesn't it?  For some reason it just made me think of a masculine card and so that's the way I'm going to interpret the sketch for my card.

I decided to use some of the Going Places Designer Series paper stack for this card and so I chose my colours from the paper.  As a result my card base is Mossy Meadow followed by a layer of Delightful Dijon and then the Going Places design.  All the men in my life love to travel and so I used the globe and compass from the Going Global set as well as the suitcase from the Traveler stamp set for my stamped main design.  I stamped the images using Basic Gray and then stamped an additional suitcase, coloured it and cut it out.  I used dimensionals to place it over the Basic Gray image.

For those tags that appear woven over the Lost Lagoon rectangle and under the stamped Very Vanilla rectangle, I used Delightful Dijon strips which I first embossed using the Boho Chic embossing folder and then rounded off at the right end.  I added a Candy Dot (white coloured with Mossy Meadow ink) to the diamond embossed shape at the end.

It was fun using Deborah's sketch for my card and I hope it inspires you to try making your own card using her sketch.  Check out the cards made by the rest of the Watercooler Artists for more inspiration at the Watercooler Wednesday Challenge.