Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Taking It to the Top--Christmas

When I finished this card, it just seemed to be missing something; so I redid it in steps:

First, I cut off the front panel and remounted it on Cherry Cobbler cs. Then I changed the sentiment and stamped it on a Nestie label. After I sponged the edges with matching red ink, I attached it with SU dimensionals. Then I decided the label was too big for this card, so...

... I moved the label to the inside and used my oval punches for a simpler greeting. I stamped the holly and berries with peg stamps and added some sparkle with green and red Spica pens. To balance it out, I also added some black dots in the upper right corner with a black Spica pen.

BTW, Spica (brand name) pens are a great way to add subtle touches on a card. Another handy tool is the plastic grid sold for cross stitching (?), which I used for the dots in the upper right corner. I sometimes use it for dots and/or dashes around the edges.

Tip: It's amazing how some household items wind up here in the tower, like the lint roller I use for picking up stray powders or paper bits off my work space. What non-stamping items do you use? Leave a comment! (Also, don't forget to sign up for email updates up at the top.)

Monday, August 15, 2011

Three of a Kind--French Foliage

Another set I ordered was French Foliage and a pack of Certainly Celery cs. What I love most about this set is its versatility--it can be used for Spring, Summer or Fall, depending on your choice of colors.

The first card is super simple, and will lend itself to a "Taking it to the Top" challenge. Using three colors from a Kaleidacolor Fresh Greens inkpad and Certainly Celery cs, I assembled the card as shown. Check back on Thursday to see how I step it up.

Next, are two wreaths using two different leaves. I thought it appropriate to use French Script for the background on the one with the Paris cancellation mark. The other features pearls for the center with a sentiment stamped in black and embroidery floss on the fold. This one is my favorite.

Jackie and I thought this would make a great Mothers Class project in the Fall with autumn-colored inks and cardstocks.

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Three of a Kind...

...but who's counting!

As soon as UPS arrived with my StampinUp order, I called Jackie with the news--and you all know it IS news whenever new stamps arrive! I packed up my supplies and headed for her dining room table to "play." At first, Jackie and I weren't too sure what to do with this giant sunflower stamp. What started out as an experiment turned out to be five cards, all different.

"Wishing you blue skies..." was done with watercolor crayons directly on the stamp and spritzed with Glimmer Mist. After stamping the greeting with Chestnut Roan chalk ink, I layered it on Soft Suede cs for the base.

Next came the birthday card using the embossed resist technique over yellow marble dsp and clear ep. After sponging around the image, I tore the left side and layered it on a yellow folio card. which I creased 3/4" from the fold.

Then we did a bd card with watermark ink and chalks. As a full-sized card, the balance wasn't quite right; but once I cut it down to a square card it worked much better. The embroidery floss and distressed edges added some texture.

Then we tried watermark ink on the Soft Suede cs and ran the edges across the ink pad to darken them also. It takes awhile for the watermark ink to really show up; but once it does, it pops. For bling, we stamped a bee, colored it with black and gold markers and applied crystal Stickles on the wings. Then we assembled the card as shown, using a dimensional for the bee.

Last, we went back to the first technique, spritzing with plain water and tearing around the image. After mounting it and popping up the greeting, we added some bronze Stickles in the center. I think next time I try it this way, it would look better to also have a straight edge on top just below the tips of the petals and mounted further up in the corner.

Of course, we didn't stop at one stamp--the others had to be tried too! Check back tomorrow for the next round. Meanwhile, please leave a comment and vote for your favorite!

Friday, August 12, 2011

Another State Fair Sweep!

All five cards that I entered won ribbons!

Since I won first place and the huge special pink ribbon in the Christmas category, the other Christmas card was given second place. The winner was a snowflake slider card that I designed especially for the Fair. The other is a tent card with a fireplace scene inside, although it looks flat here because of the paper clip.

In the other categories, the stair step birthday card won first place. (The second place birthday card is not shown here due to camera issues.) The floral card was another one that I designed for the Fair featuring a Martha Stewart border punch on the white and yellow edges, which was quite tricky to get right. They displayed it horizontally, but it actually is a vertical card.

All in all, it was a great State Fair! The weather was perfect the day we went, and the exhibits were quite inspiring, especially the quilts. I'm not into sewing any more, but truly appreciate all the hard work that goes into designing and making a quilt. The other exhibit I always enjoy is the photography one, with many of the photos reflecting the countryside where we live.

Sunday, August 7, 2011


Thanks to Evelyn for letting me borrow her new tree stamp and tiny embellishments.

First, I inked the tree stamp by using a pale green inkpad, then went over just the branches with a brown marker. After inking and stamping it three times on white, I sponged two of them with green and the other with blue. I ran one of them through the Cuttlebug with a large label die from Spellbinders.

After adding birds, balloons and birdhouses (Oh my!) I just love how they turned out!

Friday, August 5, 2011

I'M BACK (finally!)

Since my last post, I've been away from the Stamping Tower with Laura and family from Prague, the heat wave and a very bad coughing spell. Today is sunny, with lower humidity and a cool breeze wafting through the tower--so it's good to be stamping again.

As you can see, there are plenty of butterflies to enhance a card. The first was done with my Spica glitter pens, which give it a subtle shimmer, and attached with a dimensional. The pearls were added after coloring them with a light blue Bic pen.

The next butterfly is from an old SU set that I still love to use. After coloring the flower, I found a piece of dsp that matched perfectly. Again, a gold Spica pen was used in the middle of the butterfly.

Finally, a birthday card to go out today wishing the Silver Stamper recipient a "cool" birthday, evidence of my warped sense of humor. The snowman is mounted on the front of an acetate card, and the green oval behind him is mounted on the inside.

The next exciting event will be the delivery of my recent Stampin'Up order on Tuesday--yippee!