Sunday, April 26, 2015

A Sympathetic Sketch

I have come to realize I rarely do sketch challenges. Come to think of it, I have trouble getting challenges done on time at all, but sketch challenges seem the toughest for me. But when I saw the new sketch challenge at STAMPlorations, it seemed to work perfectly with my recent realization that it would be not a bad idea to have a few sympathy cards tucked away for when they are needed. Here's the sketch and my take:

I tend to keep things clean and simple for sympathy cards, and this sketch seemed made for that. I started with masking a circle and sponging with distress inks. I stamped and embossed the pussy willow, then realized the open spaces let the colours show through. Luckily with distress inks, they react with water even after they've dried, so I was able to add water and mop up the ink with a tissue. 
So I suppose one card does not a stash make, but it's a start...

Supplies: Stampin' Up bashful blue cardstock, Strathmore mixed media paper, Sunshine Designs Pussy Willow & Unity Bevy of Butterflies stamps, Memento Luxe espresso truffle, milled lavender, broken china & faded jeans distress inks, Zing clear embossing powder, dimensionals

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Thursday, April 23, 2015

Since It's Snowing...

I might as well make a Christmas card, right? To be honest, Mother Nature, I didn't need your prompting, I was planning to play along at Merry Monday Christmas Challenge as soon as I saw this week's prompt: 

Now that there's a cat back in my life, I find myself wanting to make lots of cat cards! And perhaps buying more cat stamps, too, like I need more. But for this card, I got out one of my older stamps.

This cute kitty is stamped and embossed, then watercolored. The pompom and hat trim are Stickled, and although you can't tell from the photo, the black mat is glitter paper. To me, this stamp calls for a clean and simple card design, so I'm also entering the current Simon Says Stamp Wednesday challenge. 
This snow better melt by tomorrow! :D 

Supplies: Stampin' Up real red cardstock, American Crafts black glitter paper, Strathmore mixed media paper, Penny Black Jolly Xmas Kitty stamp, Versafine onyx black ink, Zing clear embossing powder, watercolour pencils, frosted lace Stickles 

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Saturday, April 18, 2015

Time is Short at the Sisterhood...

That's right! The Sisterhood of Snarky Stampers wants to see what you can make in ten minutes or less. One of my least favourite challenges! I make cards for fun, not to feel stressed. But the Sisterhood called upon me, so here's what I came up with: 

And here's my process:

  1. Plan. Plan for a long time, because planning does not count in the ten minute limit, so the longer one plans, the longer one can put off the pressure. 
  2. Gather supplies. Any time-limited challenge I've seen (and I did even participate in one... ONCE) allows for having everything one needs at hand. Which is good for me, since I craft on our main floor and keep all my supplies in the basement.
  3. Put all not-needed supplies well out of reach to avoid confusion and distraction and places to hide for the things you do plan to use.
  4. Stop putting off the inevitable and make the card. :D
The card was made easier by using Graphic 45 papers and a coordinating journalling card. I could have just used the patterned papers, but it wouldn't have been any fun without a little stamping. I masked off most of a sentiment so I could stamp and emboss just the "you are". Then it was simply a matter of trimming and punching the corners of the sentiment, adhering it to the journalling card, trimming the two smaller cat images, die cutting the back panel -- realizing that in my haste I cut it longways instead of horizontally, so rearranging the layout immediately in my mind -- and adhering everything together. Just over eight minutes. Phew! 
For me, snark and speed did not go together, but of course it did for some of my Sisters! Be sure to check out their quick but quality cards, as well as a great one from our latest Queen of Snark, Manuela! And then I hope you can spare ten minutes and join us! 

Supplies: Stampin' Up basic black & naturals ivory cardstock, Graphic 45 Raining Cats and Dogs & The Magic of Oz patterned papers & journalling/ephemera cards, Hero Arts Cheer Up stamp, Versafine onyx black ink, Zing clear embossing powder, Simon Says Stamp postage stamp edge die, Stampin' Up ticket corner punch, pop dots

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Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Merry Jingle Joy

I know, I know... for many of us, spring has finally shown up, and here I am with another Christmas card. All I can say in my defence is that there are two Christmas challenges that go together perfectly, so I had to play along! Merry Monday Is looking for vintage-style cards, while Jingle Belles, in honour of Earth Day next week, wants us to recycle/upcycle an element on our card. Here is mine:

I knew I wanted to reuse at least part of an old (commercial) Christmas card for this, so I started looking through my bin of saved cards. Look at the fabulous image I found! I have no recollection of saving it, so it's practically vintage on its own. ;) I edged each panel with a black ink pad, just to get rid of any harsh white edges. This was a very quick card to make, but I really like it! (My husb, not quite as much. Oh well...) :D 


Supplies: white cardstock, Teresa Collins Noel & Santa's List patterned papers, recycled Christmas card, Memento tuxedo black ink, Stampin' Up ticket corner punch, dimensionals 

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Friday, April 10, 2015

Two Cards, Four Challenges

I have actually made two cards, they each fit two challenges, and none of the challenges have expired yet! This may be a once-in-a-lifetime experience for me. 
First up, a Christmas card: 

Merry Monday Christmas Challenge is looking for angels and cherubs this week, and I used Leslie's newest monthly sketch to design my card. I did a mirror image of the sketch so my angel would face into the card. I embossed the angel with holographic embossing powder for some extra shimmer. You can see it better here: 

This is after I watercolored her, but before I added a light blue wash to the background and shimmer paint to her wings. I had made a snowflake-stencilled background panel on some white cardstock, but found the image worked better with more contrast. Rather than add more layers, I ran the edges of the oval and the patterned paper along the edge of an ink pad. 
Next, a card better suited to the season, if not perhaps the weather quite yet: 

Paper Smooches SPARKS challenge is anything goes this week, while the Simon Says Stamp Wednesday Challenge has April Showers and/or Spring Flowers as its theme. The floral image is watercoloured, the sentiment die cut, and everything popped on patterned paper. Simple yet I really like the way it came out. (If I wasn't already a part of Naughty or Nice Challenges, this would totally work for this month's "In Bloom" challenge.) ;) 
Have a great weekend! 

Supplies: (Christmas) Bazzill marshmallow cardstock, Fluid hot-press watercolour paper, Echo Park Winter Wishes patterned paper, Hampton Art & Heather's Stamping Haven stamps, Versafine onyx black & tumbled glass & broken china distress inks, Zing clear & holographic embossing powders, Spellbinders oval die, watercolour pencils, Tsukineko frost white shimmer ink, pop dots; (celebrate) white cardstock, Strathmore mixed media paper, Lily Bee Design Pinwheel patterned paper, Paper Smooches Blossoming Buds stamp, Versafine onyx black ink, Zing clear embossing powder, watercolour pencils, Little B block out die, pop-dot tape

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