Friday, August 31, 2012

mint is in (Moxie Fab)

I've never been fond of mint - unless it's the filling in After Eights.  But DD decided not too long ago that it is her color of choice for an upcoming bedroom re-do.  I tell her it might be tough cuz you don't see a whole lot of stuff in mint these days.  Then along comes Moxie Fab and proves me oh-so-wrong.

This is one of the photos included in the Minty Fresh Challenge.

from etsy
I was in awe of the freshness as well as the serenity of the photo.  And oh-so-symmetrical.

Enter my new little PTI dies.  A church becomes a house with a warm brown polka dot door.  (Remember that show back in the 70s - or was it even earlier?!?)  The aura in the sky becomes a flower stamped in Amuse Lemon Whip which, by the way, is a great color. You can use it as pale yellow or cream.  I even used it to stamp the bits of grass to the left and right of the house to ground it and play off on the supports in the photo.  Then a sentiment fitting to a house stamped in mint.

Minty fresh?  Thanks for visiting.

Supplies you're moving:
Paper: CS Neenah, PP Fancy Pants
Stamps:  PTI
Ink: Amuse, Tsukineko
Tools: die PTI

Thursday, August 30, 2012

why not try? (RIC)

If I had beaucoup bucks and you and I went to the theater, you might actually see me wearing this.  Minus the shades and heels, that is.

I just love the black/white and the asymmetric cut of the jacket.  Wow.  Actually, knowing me I would probably have paired a top with a geometic design rather than flowers - but it won't be happening anyway so...

Then I must tell you that I also love this stamp set  and card (from Laura B.)  Every card I've seen using those "power lines" makes me love 'em more.  And then I saw that WPlus9 is sponsoring Runway Inspired Challenge #18.  Why not try to win me some WPlus9?

So I made a card.

Loving the way the floral print peeks out from under the jacket and remembering a card Betsy Veldman had in PC mag a few months back (embossing on black), I created an embossed floral "PP".  And because Laura's card got my attention for this challenge, and because this card of hers is one of my all time faves, I decided to do some die cutting of mats for my focal image.  This card is headed to Moxie Fab's Focal Point challenge too.

Put it all together and this is what you get - a get well card for my poor aunt who is suffering with shingles.  Nasty condition.  Hope this cheers her up.

Confession:  I worked so hard on this die cutting (a challenge for spatial-thinking-challenged me) that I ended up with a card front and nowhere to put it!  If I trimmed it down to fit on a card front, I thought the proportions would be skewed.  So I just attached it to a piece of CS with a little extra folded edge on it.   I kinda like the strip of orange peeking out.

Speaking of strips of orange...

this strip was left after trimming my orange mat.  I trimmed a strip from my handmade PP and added my sentiment in place of the right strip, in a nod to the Hero Arts sketch in the lower right corner.  All stamps used on this card are HA.

First card:  > 1 hour.  Second card:  5 min.  Strange thing this creative process...  Have a good one.

Supplies Get well soon:
Paper: CS Neenah, stash
Stamps:   Hero Arts, sentiment PTI
Ink: Versamark, Versafine black
Tools: dies Dienamics
Other:  embossing powder Zing, dimensional adhesive

Supplies thanks:
Paper: card base Buttinette
Stamps:   Hero Arts
Ink: Versamark, Versafine black

the kitchen sink (Hero Arts, Paper Smooches)

Warning:  lengthy post.  But there may be some tidbits of information you'll be glad you stuck around for...
 Hero Arts stamp designers, CAS, amuse studio inks, card design just to name a few...

It all started with the August challenge at Hero Arts.  Had to have a go at this one - CAS and stamping.  I'm in my glory!  So I chose the lower right sketch and perused my HA stamps.

Now, when I look at those sketches my mind's eye sees layers.  Layers?  I'm trying to get away from clutter!  But when I saw this mini stamp set in my stash,

my problems were solved.  The HA stamp designers did my work for me.  Thanks folks.  Maybe I should mention here that I had already reduced the sketch to its basic elements - a strip down the edge and a sentiment breaking it up.  CAS, ya see?   I trimmed one piece of CS into 3 cards and decided to have some fun.

I purposely chose the textured CS to give the mega white space some interest.  Decided to see how dye inks paired with clear stamps would work.  I'm completely satisfied.  The red is Jenny Bowlin, the rest Adirondack.  I think I've mentioned before, HA stamps and Versafine nearly always work perfectly together for sentiments.  Needed one more card to finish up the bundle for my friend's bday present.

This guy card used another HA set, Mix & Match Elements.  Only decision on my part - which stamp and which color combo to use.  These colors are all Distress Inks.  Sentiment Versafine gray.  I like the effect of stamping over the woodgrain with the frame to tie in with the sentiment box.

So hold that thought.

There's also a cool inspiration at Paper Smooches Sparks Challenge - Picture Perfect.

Hadn't played here for a long time and I'd love to win me some of the newer graphic stamps Kim has designed ;)  Well, I was all about that lower portion of the sofa.  Would give me a chance to try out my new Amuse inks since I got two browns and two greens.  And as I was perusing my few PS stamps and stumbled upon this sentiment, I decided to mix things up a bit and create a new baby card.  Unexpected, eh?  There is beauty in the unexpected.  Don't know if any great philosopher ever said that, but he/she should have.

Colors were totally from the inspiration.  Chose the polka dot stamp this time cuz hey, it's a baby card.  And my new Amuse inks.  BTW, they too flew over the pond in my suitcase!  So here you see the result of Amuse + clear stamp + textured CS.  Since it's pigment ink it's stickier than dye ink and therefore it really sticks to the stamp where there are crevasses in the CS.  I guess the dye ink is more watery so it kind of slides off the stamp and down into the crevasses.  Make sense?  So, I'm OK with this result but if you're up for perfect coverage, keep this tidbit in mind.  (You probably already knew this anyway...)

Stop here if I've bored you.  But I do have one design issue to share.  Check these two photos.

Notice the button.  Guess the first question is, why did I decide I needed a button on this card and not the others.  Don't know.  But then the question was, where should it go?  The first photo shows my automatic assumption.  But then I got a feeling that it didn't belong there.  I felt there was too much empty space in that box housing "baby", and putting the button on the left would make the whole card fall over to the left.  Making any sense?  So it got strategically placed where it now sits. Can anyone (like with a degree in design) explain this to me?  Or am I off my rocker?

Over at the new challenge blog CASology, they list one quality of CAS as "easy to recreate."  Perhaps I've motivated you to recreate.

I'm done.

Paper: CS American Crafts
Stamps:   HA, welcome baby Paper Smooches
Ink: Adirondack, Jenny Bowlin, Distress Ink, Amuse, Versafine
Other:  button

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

awwwwww.... sweet (Alley Way Stamps)

"Awwwww" - O-Ton from DD when she saw this card on the table this morning.  Must say I agree.  And it came together easily thanks to the great freebies over at The Alley Way Stamps.

The pattern for the onesie, as well as the digi stamps were all freebies.  I've actually used the cute little lady bug once before here.  This time she got bigger to adorn this card for friends who just had baby Ellie!  And was colored in with some Copics I lugged back in my suitcase this summer.  And I used a stylus to emboss some lines around the edges for more interest and added a sweet little bow.  CAS.

This is challenge #9's photo.

Notice the ribbon on the little package in the upper right corner.  Nuff said.

Have a lovely day.

Supplies sweet baby girl:
Paper: CS Neenahs
Stamps:  everything Alley Way Stamps
Ink: Copics
Tools: scissors, stylus
Other:  ribbon

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

a splash of lime (PDCC and Moxie Fab)

Black and white with a splash of lime.  How refreshing!  It's still summery here in Germany - should be all week they say.

This card is my response to the challenge at the Play Date Cafe.

Love the dots on those feathers and I even found this gift stamp that has teensy dots on the ribbon.  Happy! Stamped the gift in TPC Lime Green and the sentiment in Versafine black.  Heat embossed the sentiment with clear powder and added black bling to the exclamation point.  Rounded the upper left corner to balance out the asymmetry (Moxie Fab Design Week - Asymmetry - I'm trying!).  Mounted on charcoal CS base.   Barring the fact that my gift and sentiment are floating around ungrounded in white space, it's CAS and I like it.  Can't be perfect every time... ;)

Happy Tuesday friends.

Supplies Happy Birthday:
Paper: CS Neenah, American Crafts
Stamps:  TPC
Ink: TPC, Versafine
Tools: corner rounder EKS
Other:  embossing powder , bling

english lit 101 (Paper Crafts)

Quick one here.  Paper Crafts Connection is looking for cards that are "very British."  How's this?

An explanation perhaps?  The Queen's an institution and the Olympics were fab, but I don't own stamps of either and I probably never will.  I do have these ephemera/post stamps from Papermania.  So I opted to pair them with some Alice in Wonderland stamps.  In reverance to my days as an English major.

Stamped my art (he he he).  Punched an edge.  Added some twine and "crown jewels".  Photographed it at midnight in poor lighting and here you have it.  The inside is stamped with "I'm late, I'm late, I'm late".  A belated bday card - capice?  Consider it an American attempt at British humor.

Off to bed.  Cheerio.

Supplies Oh dear:
Paper: CS Neenah
Stamps:   Crafty Secrets, Papermania
Ink: Jenny Bowlin, Versafine gray
Tools: border punch EKS
Other:  twine, beads

Monday, August 27, 2012

to PTI or not to PTI... (TCM, Moxie Fab)

These little guys have pulled at my heartstrings since the day I first saw them.

I remember the first time I googled to see who/what Papertrey is.  And where I could get the products in Germany.  Yeah, well, that idea died quickly when I found out about the shipping rates.  I'm cheap, remember?

I've seen the good and bad press the company gets.  It's hard to believe a company can be so customer-unfriendly when it has such a huge following.  Product or principle?  Hmmm.  I went with my capitalistic heart and placed an order this summer.  Lugged those dies back in my suitcase with me (and they weren't alone!).

Now that I own them I went on a chipboard making rage ala Melissa Phillips.  Time to put some product to use.

Two cards today, one for TCM and one for Moxie Fab.

Masked off the edges of card base.  Stamped butterfly randomly.  Heat embossed sentiment onto die-cut-painted-dry-embossed-stamped-and-inked-used-to-be-a-cereal-box tag.  Added a strip of washi and adhered tag and sweetie butterfly.

One design note here:  Notice the turquoise sentiment.  It came about as I pondered how to ink a sentiment clearly onto the dry embossed surface.  I decided to use Versamark (to be able to squish it into the "valleys").  When deciding which color to use (I was thinking red or brownish) I remembered one of the "aha moment" tips I'd seen.  Use the unexpected.  Don't know if you agree, but I think it gives the card a little extra somethin'.

BTW, I followed this month's sketch over at The Craft's Meow.

And because I'm producing another package of cards as a bday present for a friend, here's another one.

I'm not at all sure about the Movement/Flow technique.  Hard to analyze your own card but I think my eye keeps circling here, ending up at the little red heart each time, without wandering aimlessly or completely leaving the card!  Even when my eye drops down off the bottom of the tag, those few text lines catch it and the gold sentiment pulls it back up and then there comes that sweet little heart again.  I'm entering the challenge over at Moxie Fab.  Thanks for your visit.

Supplies je pense:
Paper: card base Buttinette, cereal box
Stamps:   butterfly Martha Stewart, text CHF,  sentiment Artemio
Ink: Memento, Distress Ink
Tools: dies PTI, embossing plate Sizzix
Other:  acrylic paint, embossing powder Zing, washi tape

Supplies dankeschon:
Paper: card base Buttinette, cereal box
Stamps:   text CHF,  sentiment InkyStamp
Ink: Distress Ink, Versamark
Tools:dies PTI,  embossing plate Sizzix
Other:  acrylic paint, embossing powder, seam binding, twine

Sunday, August 26, 2012

katherine or audrey? (Moxie Fab)

This photo haunted me for days.

It's the Tuesday Trigger:  Autumn Awaits over at Moxie Fab World.  But I didn't really get autumn.  I was overwhelmed by the amazingly cool billowing scarf.  (As well as, I couldn't pull that fashion look off if I tried.)  Which reminded me of the gals in France.  They pull off "the look", even in sweats.  Not that they'd wear sweats, of course.

So I stepped back from it and thought about what I "got" from the photo.  It came down to the combo of colors (I don't think I own any pieces of clothing in any of those three colors), the red lipstick and the oh-so-fashionable-I-wouldn't-be-caught-dead-in sunglasses.  Which made me realize that the pic reminded  me of Audrey.  Or was it more like Katherine?

Enough digression.  Here's what I came up with.

Red, yellow, orange, teal and shiny (heat embossed) black.  And French.  And CAS, cuz that's what I'm TRYING to be all about, remember?

Trickiest thing about this was simplifying the zillion ideas darting around in my head.  Second trickiest, masking off the other candles with cello tape to ink up just one candle - and that, four times!

Which brings me to the first card I made, using a clear stamp (martini) and Distress Inks.  Wasn't happy with the way the martinis looked.  Didn't really work, unless you want a "dotty" look.  I didn't.  Perhaps that's why it's called Distress Ink...  And why Tim only works with rubber stamps...

I have had success with some clear stamps and DI.  But it's hit or miss.  Which just goes to show you can never have enough inks - true?  Just curious - how many do you have?  And what's your fave for clear stamps?

Did you see the wealth of information at Paper Crafts and Moxie Fab last week?  A great refresher course on card design.  I'm linking my card up to the Asymmetry Challenge at Moxie Fab.  I think the tail of the "J" on "joyeux" does its part to balance out the asymmetic placement of the candles.  We'll see if Cath agrees ;)

Supplies joyeux anniversaire:
Paper: CS Neenah, American Crafts
Stamps:   TPC, sentiment Artemio
Ink: Versamagic, Versafine
Other:  embossing powder

Friday, August 24, 2012

CAS and fully loaded (Moxie Fab)

Hi followers.  Remember me?  Not surprised if the answer is no.  What started as a wonderful month-long vacation back in the good ol' USA continued into three more relaxing weeks of summer break back in Germany and then a couple more weeks of decluttering both my house and my brain.  And I ain't done yet.

Simplify.  My new word.

To make a long story short, I'm reading "Steve Jobs" and loving it.  What a stinker he could be, but what a genius!  Anyhoo, one of the company's first advertising slogans was a DaVinci quote

Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication."

Wow.  How true.

As for my house, imagine you have two teenagers, boy and girl, and you've never gotten rid of their clothes.  Get the picture?  22 garbage bags full in my attic (the problem of having space).  Can you feel those 22 bags weighing on my shoulders?  That was my project last week - either find neighbors who would like things or give them away.  Simplify.

As for my brain, I've been all over the board as a cardmaker.  CAS or fully loaded shabby chic (not that I can really pull off either).   Can't seem to decide what I want to be when I grow up ;)  Which has also led to an accumulation of  stash.  As in piles of "maybe I'll need that scrap/TP roll/piece of cardboard one day" all over my laundry room.  Feel that on my shoulders too?

So.  It's pretty simple actually (no pun intended).  Ya know how you like a lot of cards you see out there in blogland.  But there are those precious few which you actually love.  They catch your eye when you glance over the InLinkz thumbnails - like, wow.  For me, it's the truly CAS beauties.  So now I know what I want to be when I grow up.  Clean and simple.  In my house and my cardmaking brain.  And I'm pretty certain it's gonna be quite a challenge.

And that wasn't very short either, was it?  Sorry.  Here's my CAS card for the Repetition challenge over at Moxie Fab.

Lotsa white space plus one of my fave techniques - heat embossing then distress inking.  Then punching.  Voila!

It's nice to be back.  Thanks for looking.  Happy Friday!

Supplies thanks again:
Paper: CS Neenah
Stamps:   CHF, Prima
Ink: Versamark, Distress Ink, Versafine
Tools: circle punch EKS, butterfly punch Martha Stewart
Other:  embossing powder, brad, scoring stylus

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