Wednesday 30 September 2015

Paper Players 264 and JAI 281

The Paper Players sketch has been calling to me all week, yet I've only just got myself organised for it. Last week I was on a very clean and simple tangent, but that approach wasn't really going to fly with Claire's lovely sketch.

Seeking some more inspiration, I went to Just Add Ink, where the challenge was to add your three favourite colours. Well, that's a bit like asking me my favourite book...  a question with an ever-changing answer and depending on which genre you're thinking about! So I settled on my current favourite combination from this year's in-colours: Mint Macaron, Watermelon Wonder and Tip-top Taupe.

And the real story is that I shouldn't have been card-making at all. I have an empty suitcase and plane tickets to Australia. That case won't pack itself...

Card: Whisper White, Mint Macaron
Stamps: SU Butterfly Basics, Kind Eclectic, Hardwood; Hero Arts Thank You
Inks: Tip-Top Taupe, Mint Macaron, Watermelon Wonder
Other: Martha Stewart Lace border punch,  SU Elegant Butterfly punch, SU Beautifully Baroque embossing folder, brad base and candy dot, linen twine, Tip-top Taupe ribbon, dimensionals, sponges.

Saturday 26 September 2015

As You See It 105

This week, at As You See It, we've been given a fabulous sketch challenge. I love it when you look at a challenge and you just know what you want to do with it and that's what happened here. I got to use my new favourite stamp set, Awesomely Artistic, so it was even better.

Lost Lagoon and Pear Pizzazz just go so well together, it's unreal. I couldn't resist using them together again for this card.

I created the background using ink and water on an acrylic block, then built it up using a mix of stamping and embossing. I don't usually fussy-cut but that dragonfly was asking for it; so much so that I gave him double-layer wings.

Go over to As You See It and see what the rest of the design team have done with this sketch and join in yourself!

Card: Lost Lagoon, Whisper White, Pear Pizzazz, Winter Wonderland DSP, Smoky Slate
Stamps: Awsomely Artistic, Perfect Pennants, acrylic block.
Ink: Lost Lagoon, Pear Pizzazz, Tuxedo Black, versamark
Other: White embossing powder, Square Lattice embossing folder (retired), dimensionals, Lost Lagoon marker, rhinestone.

Wednesday 23 September 2015

Cas-ology 165 SIP15

I do most of my crafting at the weekend and this weekend, we're going away to Wellington to WOW - The  World of Wearable Arts - so I didn't expect to make any cards this week. A couple of things happened to change this. One is the weather. Despite it technically being spring, and daylight saving starting this weekend, the weather is foul. Which meant I was not inclined to anything outdoors this afternoon. The second was being inspired by the challenge at Cas-ology, which I'd seen this morning.

By the time I got home from work, I was itching to get into my craft space. I had the plan clear but not the colours when I remembered the new colour challenge at Stamp, Ink, Paper, which had appealed to me.

Since I don't have any Daffodil Delight, I had to use the closest match: So Saffron.

The butterfly started out black stamped onto yellow but he was upgraded to a new model using black embossing powder on yellow which gave him just that much more zing. I like that the curves of the font echo the circles in the focal point.

I was very pleased with this little glimpse of summer when all I can see outside is rain and grey skies!

Update: So pleased that this card was a winner at Stamp, Ink, Paper 
and got an Honourable Mention at Cas-ology.
Card: Whisper White, So Saffron
Stamps: SU Papillon Potpourri, Clearly Besotted Say it in Style and Leafy Accents.
Ink: Pool Party, So Saffron, Black, versamark
Other: MFT Circle Stitch Dot die, Circle framelit, Bitty Butterfly punch, Black embossing powder, black rhinestones, dimensionals, sponges, black marker pen to colour cut edges.

Saturday 19 September 2015

Just Add Ink 280

Just Add Ink's challenge this week is perfect for those of us thinking about Christmas already. This is theme week and it's "Just Add Glimmer." I've been experimenting with my one and only purchase (so far) from the holiday catalogue, Embellished Ornaments and co-ordinating Delicate Ornament dies. Just perfect for a bit of glimmer and glitz. Even though they are things I don't usually use, they're just right for Christmas cards...

Unfortunately, I could not get the silver embossing to really look silver. It kept picking up the light and looking gold. So, just for the record, the sentiment is embossed in SILVER not gold!

Card: Night of Navy, Whisper White, silver glimmer paper (Bella)
Stamps: Embellished Ornaments
Ink: Night of Navy, versamark
Other: Delicate Embellishments dies, silver embossing powder, black pen

As You See It Challenge 104: Design team

I feel deliriously excited today, as this is my first post as a member of the Design Team at As You See It, which is also my first DT membership! I also feel very honoured to join such an innovative challenge team and look forward to the very exciting weeks they've got lined up for the rest of the year.

This week's challenge is an assortment challenge: a kind of grab-bag of elements that must all appear in some way in the finished card.

The knot element got me casting my mind back to the dim past and my Girl Guiding days, and from that nostalgia trip came the idea of using the friendship knot as the focus for a friendship card. Thank goodness for YouTube because the finer points of knot-tying have long since been expunged from my memory!

So, back to the assortment bag:
Negative space in the cutaway of the white panel, the circles are in the die, the ombre in the shaded background of the cardbase - the lightest colour in it is Pool Party, and the knot is in the Friendship Knot.

Card: Whisper White
Stamps: Clearly Besotted Say it in Style
Inks: Island Indigo, Coastal Cabana, Pool Party
Other: SSS Confetti Circle die, Coastal Cabana thick twine, dimensionals, sponges.

Friday 18 September 2015

Paper Players 262 SIP 14

Here I am, once again on a Friday night, trying to get something together for another super challenge at The Paper Players. Into single figure hours left! This time, an unusual yet delicious, colour combination.

I'm pairing this up with a very appealing sketch from Stamp, Ink, Paper.

And in a real departure from my normal modus operandi, I'm going to enter this card into a third challenge. Usually, I make one card, one challenge and occasionally one card, two challenges but only once or twice have I entered three: you get to make more cards this way! But I've been following Darnell  at djkardkreations for a while now and she's having an NBUS challenge - Never Before Used Schtuff. 

In June, I took the plunge into becoming a Stampin' Up demonstrator. When I did so, I mentally said to myself that I wouldn't buy "other stuff" for a while. But.......
.... along came PaperTreyInk with a Bibliophile stamp and die set. Well. What can I say? I'm a recidivist reader. I'm a librarian. I'm a stamper. Book stamps don't pop up every day. No brainer buy up. And then it just sat there looking at me, begging to be used. For a couple of months...

Can't wait to try the author's quote stamps from this set. It includes two of my favourites: John Green and Jane Austen!

Update: Pleased to have this card picked at Stamp, Ink, Paper.

Card: Lost Lagoon, Whisper White, Tangelo Twist, So Saffron, Black
Stamps: SU Dictionary background stamp, PaperTreyInk Bibliophile
Ink: Tuxedo Black
Other: Bibliophile dies, SU Pretty in Print embossing folder, Lost Lagoon marker pen, dimensionals

Sunday 13 September 2015

Dinosaur Playtime SSC109

Last week, a colleague asked me to make a card for her son's 9th birthday. I was keen to do it, because sitting on my desk was the No Bones About It set that I bought as part of my start-up demonstrator's kit but have not used all that much. I suppose I picked it as part of a nostalgia trip, remembering my son's dinosaur obsession that lasted from when he was three until he was about ten, as well as my own fascination for dinosaurs when I was in primary school. Anyway, I had such fun playing today that I think I'll be doing more of it!

My other inspiration today was the colour challenge at Sunday Stamps. Such a dreamy colour combination, it almost seemed a waste to use it on a T-Rex but it was a fabulous combination to work with.

It's a simple wee card, but I think one a little boy would be happy with.

Card: Whisper White, Tangelo Twist
Stamps: No Bones About It, Gorgeous Grunge
Ink: Island Indigo, Tangelo Twist, Crushed Curry, Tuxedo Black
Other: Provocraft Olivia dies 

Saturday 12 September 2015

Inkspire Me 215

It's been a while since I played at Inkspire Me, but this week's sketch stayed in my mind as I had the idea that it could be made into a front-opening card. Although today was the annual Blossom Festival complete with a parade, the weather did not co-operate and it was a very wintery day instead. Good for staying indoors where it was warm and dry and experimenting with this idea.

The sponge distressing in Crumb Cake and the honeycomb edging have not photographed as well as I'd have liked.

Card: Crumb Cake, Whisper White, scrap of Calypso Coral
Stamps: Butterfly Basics, Awesomely Artistic, Vintage Labels
Inks: Calypso Coral, Certainly Celery, Crumb Cake, Tuxedo Black
Other: Calypso Coral seam binding, sponges, Bitty Butterfly punch, small oval framelit, Crumb Cake candy dot

Friday 11 September 2015

Gold, green and musical

Last week, I saw the challenge at CAS-ual Friday through the blog of the very talented fellow New Zealander Shona Chambers, who I follow. I've got a bit of a thing for music themed challenges, given my long stint as a music-mother. I've driven many miles over the years to music lessons, music exams, recitals and orchestra practices and the like, having had two daughters learn flute and a son who learned violin, viola, cello and took piano through to Licentiate level. And that's also exactly why I know you can never have enough music-themed thank-you cards for music teachers and orchestra conductors!

It's also been a long while since I played at Less is More but the colour combo of green and gold, which is this week's challenge, suited the card I had in mind and it's a challenge I always look at because the cards there are so wonderful.

 I masked off a strip panel and embossed the music background stamp in gold. Then I blended green inks in ombre style from the bottom up: Mossy Meadow through to Pear Pizzazz through to Certainly Celery. I stacked the music clef die in Mossy Meadow and stamped the sentiment in the same ink. The top white panel is edged in Mossy Meadow marker in order to give the panel a little more definition.

Card: Whisper White and Whisper White thick, scraps of Mossy Meadow.
Ink: Mossy Meadow, Pear Pizzazz, Certainly Celery, versamark
Stamps: Hero Arts Music background stamp, Clearly Besotted Say it in Style.
Other: Gold embossing powder, Marianne music clef die, sponges, Mossy Meadow marker.

Sunday 6 September 2015


Last year, I bought myself the circle card thinlit. I've never used it as often as I'd imagined I would so when I gave my room a tidy over today, I put it out on my desk to remind myself I owned it. I'd also put my hands on the Tangelo Twist inkpad, which reminded me what a lively, but often overlooked, colour it is. With the bleak winter day chasing any thoughts of spring away, I really wanted to use such a vibrant colour. And so evolved this card for the challenge at Stamp, Ink, Paper.

I love black, white and pop of colour, so this challenge was speaking to me loud and clear this afternoon! I'll point out now that it's jolly hard to get a decent photo of a card like this!

Card: Whisper White, Black, Tangelo Twist, Everyday Chic DSP.
Stamps: Whole Lot of Lovely
Ink: Tangelo Twist
Other: Circle Card thinlit (including the chevrons and scallop circle from the set), circle framelits, 
2 inch circle punch.

Saturday 5 September 2015

As You See It 102

After a fabulous weekend away in Wellington last week, it was great to be back in my craft room this weekend. As I was sitting contemplating my lovely new Christmas ornaments bundle, I saw how I would use the superb sketch from As You See It, even if September seems ridiculously early to be thinking of Christmas!

The left-hand panel was created by resist embossing: the holly stamp embossed in white then sponged with Cherry Cobbler. I've inlaid some Cherry Cobbler and pearls into the fabulous little bauble die from the set, which had been cut in gold card then backed with white. To carry the gold from the bauble into the rest of the card, the 'Christmas' part of the sentiment is gold-embossed. Cherry Cobbler, gold and white is my current favourite Christmas combo.

Card: Whisper White, gold card, strip of Cherry Cobbler
Stamps: Embellished Ornaments, Endless Wishes
Ink: Cherry Cobbler, Versamark
Other: Delicate Ornaments die, White embossing powder, gold embossing powder, pearls, dimensionals, gold ribbon

Friday 4 September 2015

Paper Players 260 CAS 140

Last weekend, I had the delight of going on a girls' road trip to Wellington with one of my daughters to visit my other two children, who are living there. It was a great weekend: lovely company, lovely food, lovely shopping and a very moving visit to Sir Peter Jackson's World War I memorial exhibition at the Dominion Museum. But you can't really take your craft kit on holiday, so I confess that it's now been nearly two weeks since a card has been made!

So, with it having rolled around to Friday night,  I wanted to get in the groove again. I'd had my eye on the Paper Players Tic-Tac-Toe challenge but had only single figure hours left to get it done. That made photographing the finished product in artificial light quite tricky and the beautiful Mint Macaron ribbon is looking a sage-grey - which it definitely isn't in real life!

I've played the bottom line: ribbon, mint macron and oval. What had also caught my eye during the week was the colour challenge at CAS: Colours and Sketches. Such a beautiful combination!

The colours made me think about the Best Thoughts set I have and my desire to experiment with using inks like watercolour. I love that big flower but wanted to make it really stand out. So I've blended Rose Red and Pink Pirouette with a brush and water to give some depth to the flower. Then I've tipped the stamens with white gel pen.

Update: So pleased that this card was chosen as A Cut Above at The Paper Players.

Card: Whisper White, Mint Macaron, Watercolour paper, scrap of Pink Pirouette
Stamps: Best Thoughts, A Dozen Thoughts
Ink: Mint Macaron, Rose Red, Tuxedo Black
Other: Mint Macaron ribbon, Pink Pirouette stamp'n'write marker, White gel pen, brush and water, Rose Red candy dot, Decorative Dots embossing folder, tag die, dimensionals.