Thursday 29 December 2016

Freshly Made Sketches 268

I've taken a quick break from my frenetic week by going to my craft room and playing with the new set, Beautiful You. It will be available 4 January with the release of the new Stampin' Up Occasions catalogue. I've had it since just before Christmas but have only got to open the box this morning! Inspiration came from the sketch at Freshly Made Sketches.

One thing I've never done before is paper piecing but this set just seemed to be asking for it. So here it is:

In addition to piecing her clothing, I've given her hat a hat band using a white gel pen and a pearl accent. The interior of the hat is shaded with Soft Sky, which is echoed behind the sentiment. I've used Crumb Cake and a blender pen to give her the hint of skin.

Card: Night of Navy, Shimmery White, Whisper White, Soft Sky, Floral Boutique DSP
Stamps: Beautiful You
Inks: Night of Navy, Black Stazon, Crumb Cake and Soft Sky
Other: White gel pen, pearl, dimensionals, blender pen.

Monday 26 December 2016

Create with Connie and Mary 437

Boxing Day is quieter than Christmas but for us, it is also my father-in-law's birthday. Tonight, we'll all be gathering again for his 86th birthday barbecue. A quiet moment this afternoon sent me to my room to make him a card. Inspiration came from the sketch at Create with Connie and Mary, which I'd seen before Christmas and loved. So glad that the challenge was extended for the holiday season.

I'm enjoying very much the new set Dragonfly Dreams with the coordinating dies, available soon on 4 January when the Occasions catalogue is released. In this card, I stamped off the dragonflies in Crumb Cake then used them to create a background. It's covered with a vellum overlay because I liked the dreamy, floating effect it gave.

The card base is Early Espresso and so is the under-dragonfly. The delicate wings are cut from copper foil. He's decorated with some carefully hoarded neutrals candy dots and backed with some copper filament threads.

The sentiment is copper embossed onto Soft Suede and is from another about-to-be-released set, Big on Birthdays.

Update: Delighted to be a Top Pick at Create with Connie and Mary

Card: Early Espresso, Very Vanilla, Soft Suede, Copper foil, vellum
Stamps: Dragonfly Dreams, Big on Birthdays
Inks: Crumb Cake, versamark
Other: Copper embossing powder, Detailed Dragonfly thinlits, copper filament thread, neutrals candy dots.
All products Stampin' Up.

Monday 19 December 2016

Just Add Ink 341

There's a very smart colour challenge this week at Just Add Ink.

In the act of tidying up my desk after Christmas cards and my December classes, I came across a set that was a favourite of mine earlier in the year but haven't used much lately. Botanical Blooms is a lovely set and Timeless Textures is another favourite of mine so taking them in hand with those lovely challenge colours, this is where I ended up.

The sentiment is from a set that will be available in the new Occasions catalogue, released on 4 January, called Big on Birthdays.

The central flower was cut from white card. Originally, I was just going to sponge the edges in Old Olive but I ended up softly sponging all of it with the edges darker. I like the little vellum fern leaf slipped into the bouquet. The background stamps is a mix of elements from Timeless Textures and the little flower cluster from Botanical Blooms. Then there's a few rhinestones scattered to finish off.

I like the freshness and elegance of this colour combination. Thanks for a great challenge!

Update: Very happy to get an Honourable Mention at Just Add Ink for this card.

Card: Basic Gray, Old Olive, Whisper White, vellum
Stamps: Botanical Blooms, Timeless Textures, Big on Birthdays
Inks: Basic Gray, Old Olive, Tuxedo Black
Other: Botanical Builder framelits, Rhinestones, dimensional, sponges

Sunday 18 December 2016

AAA Christmas Challenge

Well, I didn't really need any more Christmas cards but I really wanted to join the challenge at AAA Cards. I discovered this site last year,  played a few times and I realised today that I don't think I've entered here this year. With only hours to go until the challenge closed, I worked out my final Christmas card idea for the year for this challenge.

So here is my humble Christmas offering, that had me spending quite a lot of time talking myself out of adding or doing things to it because I wanted a very CAS effect.

The silver embossed tree I coloured in - resist emboss but colouring inside the lines! Originally I'd planned a Cherry Cobbler card base but changed to white because I wanted to draw the eye to the central oval.

A simple but sweet note to end the Christmas card season.

Card: Whisper White (heavy and normal), Cherry Cobbler
Stamps: Christmas Classics (retired)
Inks: Cherry Cobbler, Versamark, Garden Green Stamp'n'write marker
Other: Softly Falling embossing folder, Stitched Oval framelits, Layering Oval framelits, dimensionals.

Saturday 17 December 2016

Freshly Made Sketches 267

Today's card, for this week's challenge at Freshly Made Sketches, is a mix of old and new.

The stamp set is a new one, available in January from the new Occasions catalogue, called Big on Birthdays. Everything else is old but the background paper is SO old that it is well-retired. The stripy paper is a resist embossed paper that was available in a previous Sale-a-bration. Here, I've sponged it with Bermuda Bay to tone in with the rest of the card and the white diagonals have a pleasing shine in real life.

The silver embossed sentiment shows up a lot better in the second photo. The three stars come from variously the Mini Treat Bag thinlits, the Circle Flip card thinlits and the Star Confetti border punch.

Although not in a style I normally use, I like this card and think it is one of those rare things: a male-appropriate card!

Card: Bermuda Bay, Silver foil card, scrap of Silver glimmer paper, Irresistibly Yours specialty DSP.
Stamps: Big on Birthdays
Inks: Bermuda Bay, Versamark
Other: Silver embossing powder, Confetti Star border punch, Circle Flip card thinlits, Mini Treat Bag thinlits, dimensionals, sponges, Rectangular Stitched dies.

All products Stampin' Up except the stitched rectangular dies.

Friday 16 December 2016

Hand Stamped Sentiments 253

To me, the colour challenge at Hand Stamped Sentiments was irresistible! I love those rich colours and it fell right into my hands as I as experimenting with the newly arrived Dragonfly Dreams (available in the new Occasions catalogue in January).

The background of the centre panel is acrylic block stamped. I stamped on the dots in Eggplant and Pear but then wet the Eggplant ones so they bled a little. The card base is embossed using the Softly Falling folder to echo the dots in the panel.

The dragonfly die cut is so beautiful that after a lick of Wink of Stella and some enamel dots, little else was needed.

Here the embossed card base and the Wink of Stella are easier to see.

Update: So delighted to be an Artist's Pick at Hand Stamped Sentiments.

Card: Elegant Eggplant, Pear Pizzazz, Watercolour paper, Whisper White
Stamps: Dragonfly Dreams
Inks: Elegant Eggplant, Bermuda Bay, Pear Pizzazz, Tuxedo Black
Other: Softly Falling embossing folder, Detailed Dragonfly thinlits, Bermuda Bay enamel shapes, Bermuda Bay thick baker's twine, clear Wink of Stella, dimensionals

Thursday 15 December 2016

Global Design Project 66

It's funny how you can start with one clear idea and end up in some other place. That's what happened with this card.

New stuff arrived earlier in the week. As I was playing with Dragonfly Dreams, the set I was most desperate to have, a great idea for a card based on the sketch at Global Design Project came to me.

I could see what was required: a background in the top leftish area, a vertical and a tag for the greeting. All was clear in my head. But. But as I went to attach the tag to the twine I just couldn't do it. It seemed so wrong! 

So, a dilemma. Had I changed it too much or was this acceptable modification? The card was definitely inspired by the sketch although not ruled by it. I decided to share anyway, especially after I had a good look at the Design Team offerings and saw that some of them did away with the tag too.

I cut two of the flight of dragonflies, one in Early Espresso and one in Pear Pizzazz. I set the Espresso dragonflies into the outline on the Pear, backed it with Crumb Cake and inlaid the little green bits separating the dragonflies. Then I gave the Crumb Cake a lick of clear Wink of Stella, which you can see in the close-up.

I added in some raindrop splatters to ground the flight of dragonflies.

And a peek inside, showing the other half of the sentiment stamp.

This adorable set, and the co-ordinating dies, will be available in the new Occasions catalogue in the New Year.

Card: Early Espresso, Pear Pizzazz, Crumb Cake.
Stamps: Dragonfly Dreams, Timeless Textures
Inks: Pear Pizzazz, Early Espresso
Other: Detailed Dragonfly thinlits, Linen twine, clear Wink of Stella.

Tuesday 13 December 2016

The Paper Players 325

The final Paper Players challenge of the year was harder than it seemed at first glance. It looked so Christmassy and so opulent but it was so hard to get the metallics balanced!

The whole idea started off with a piece of embossed vellum I've had sitting on my desk for a while, ever since I embossed it just to see what would happen.

The gold wreath ring is cut using two scallop circles from the layering die set. The stars are cut using star elements from a couple of other thinlet sets: the Circle flip card and the Mini Treat Bags and using a mix of gold and silver foil and silver glimmer paper.

I've added in a few stars and circles from Metallic Shapes.

I also did something I seldom do - I saved the sentiment for the inside.

Update: Delighted to be picked as A Cut Above at the Paper Players!

Card: Whisper White, Silver Foil, Vellum, Scraps of Gold foil and Silver Glimmer paper.
Stamps: Peace This Christmas
Ink: Versamark
Other: Holly embossing folder, Gold embossing powder, Layering Circle framelits, Star dies from Mini Treat thinlits and Circle Flip card thinlit, Gold cord, Silver metallic shapes, dimensional.

Sunday 11 December 2016

SIP 77

I was feeling well over making Christmas cards, so it was very exciting that the courier arrived yesterday afternoon with my box of Stampin' Up pre-order: it was a long wait from pre-order day!

It was doubly exciting because this is one of the few times I've ever had a pre-order and I'm really pleased that I could use something for the challenge at Stamp, Ink, Paper because I just love this sketch.

I'm glad the Lift Me Up set, which will be available after 4 January, is rubber rather than photopolymer as I find it so much easier to multi-colour a rubber stamp. And those gorgeous balloons were just begging to be coloured!

The small balloon I coloured, stamped then masked off. Then I placed the large circle mask, sponged it over with Soft Sky then used a scallop-edge circle to sponge on Marina Mist to create the cloud effect. The big balloon is popped up on dimensionals.

I've showed you the inside so you can see the other half of the birthday sentiment. I masked the stamp so it could be stamped in two halves.

So, I'm very happy with this masculine (but not exclusively masculine) card and am keen now to get back to my room and explore that big, brown Stampin' Up box some more!

Update: So delighted to be a Top Pick at Stamp, Ink, Paper!
Card: Night of Navy, Whisper White, Carried Away DSP (available in Sale-a-bration)
Stamps: Lift Me Up
Inks: Night of Navy, Soft Sky, Marina Mist
Other: Up & Away thinlits,  Stamp'n'Write markers: Night of Navy, Watermelon Wonder, Mint Macaron, Peekaboo Peach, sponges, dimensionals, scallop circle punch, circle framelits

Saturday 10 December 2016

Case this Sketch 201

I thought I was over making Christmas cards but the sketch at Cas(e) This Sketch this week gave me a chance to try out an idea I've been thinking on for a few days. I've been thinking about using non-Christmas stamps for Christmas cards, like this beautiful peony from Altenew's Peony Bouquet set.

Here is Cas(e) This Sketch's inspiration:

And here is my non-Christmas stamp Christmas card. The main image might not be a Christmas stamp but you can't get a much more traditional colourway than Cherry Cobbler and Gold.

It was also my first play with using Shimmery White cardstock to watercolour on. It does have a lovely shimmer in the paper too, that worked well wiht the gold embossing.

Lots of masking happened also in this card. The flower was masked to add the leaves and both were masked out the add the starry background. 

I'd certainly be happy to be sent this card, so I hope the eventual recipient will too!

Card: Cherry Cobbler, Gold foil, Shimmery white cardstock
Stamps: Altenew Peony Bouquet, Stampin' Up Holly Jolly Greetings and Holly Berry Happiness
Inks: Cherry Cobbler, Garden Green, Versamark, Gold
Other: Gold embossing powder, post-it notes, water and paintbrush.

Sunday 4 December 2016

FMS 265

The weekend is almost at an end. It's been busy and social, as this time of the year often is, but I found a quiet moment to pop into my craft room to have a play with the sketch at Freshly Made Sketches.

Today's card is an experiment with bling. I don't usually go in for very much sparkle and shine but it's happened on a Christmas card or two of late. This card uses several subtle bling elements which I wanted to contrast with the natural scene. Two of those elements are the scallop-edged halo of silver glimmer paper that just gives a hint of sparkle. Another is the silver embossed 'birthday'.

Another is the use of rhinestones down the centre of the butterfly. The butterfly has been inked and blended and some highlights added with white gel pen, before getting a layer of clear Wink of Stella.

This close-up shows the Wink of Stella on the wings. It also captures the final bling element: there are a number of fern fronds heat embossed in Iridescent Ice powder. They show up as sparkle but in places there is also a resist emboss effect in the sponged background.

In real life, the effect of the sparkle and shine elements is subtle, yet collectively appealing. So I will call this experiment a success!

Card: Soft Sky, Silver Glimmer, Whisper White, Calypso Coral, Watercolour paper
Stamps: Papillon Potpourri, Butterfly Basics, Number of Years
Inks: So Saffron, Calypso Coral, Old Olive, Black Stazon, Soft Sky, Versamark
Other: Number of Years banner die, Elegant Butterfly punch, Iridescent Ice embossing powder, silver embossing powder, white gel pen, rhinestones, clear Wink of Stella, dimensionals, layering circle framelits, blender pen, sponges

Friday 2 December 2016

Paper Player 323 Inkspire Me 278

I've had my eye on the appealing sketch at The Paper Players all week. During the day, I had an idea for the sketch, so with work over and the weekend just beginning, I got into my craft room to see if I could make it happen.

To make the sky, I put some peel-off stars on before I sponged the sky. Then I stamped the stars from Holly Jolly Greetings in silver before removing the stickers. I was tempted to leave the little silver stars on but they detracted too much from the star on the tree. The Lucky Stars embossing folder, used on the card front, continues the starry night theme.

The 'Merry Christmas' is cut down from Simon Says Stamp Holiday Frames die. I backed the Christmas so that I could put back in the bits of the R and A to make them whole rather than outlines only.

I'm pretty happy with how it's turned out.

I'm also entering this card into the Alpine Christmas Challenge at Inkspire Me because I saw it this morning before work and it got me thinking about snowy scenes.

Card: Rich Razzleberry, Whisper White, Silver glimmer paper
Stamps: Totally Trees
Ink: Rich Razzleberry, Night of Navy, Island Indigo
Other: Simon Says Stamp Holiday Frames die, Peel-off stars, sponges, Lucky Stars embossing folder, Silver metallic star shape.