Tuesday 31 January 2017

Retro Rubber 55 - Design Team

Love is in the air this time at Retro Rubber with a challenge just in time for Valentine's Day. Just use hearts in your card and don't forget that the stamps you use must be more than a year old. You can use new other stuff - just the stamps have to be retro.

Well, the best thing about this challenge for me is the chance to go back and revisit former favourites. One of my favourites is the retired Flowering Flourishes - so elegant - and that is dated from around 2012. Regular readers of my blog will know that I have recently become the owner of a MISTI and it is with pleasure that I tell you this card might well have been impossible without one and I no longer regret the price I paid for it!

I used MISTI to stamp twice: once with crumb cake on white and once with versamark on Real Red, which I then embossed with white. Then I used a punch and dies from two other framelit sets to cut the hearts out of the red and overlaid them onto the Crumb Cake/Whisper White. Since the success of the design depended on the two images matching up perfectly, you can see why it would be pretty tough without the MISTI. I do like the effect it created.

The 'congratulations' is from the now retired Zoo Babies set, which appeared in the 2013 catalogue. Even the paper is retro, coming from a paper stack that was in last year's Occasions catalogue.

So please, get out your old stamps and show them a bit of love this Valentine's Day and show us what you've done. You have two weeks, until February 10, to join in. Don't forget to tell us how old your stamps are.

Card: Real Red, Crumb Cake, Whisper White, scrap of DSP
Stamps: Flowering Flourishes, Zoo Babies
Ink: Crumb Cake, Real Red, versamark
Other: white embossing powder, Sweetheart punch, Baker's Box thinlits, Mini-treat bag thinlits, pearl.

Monday 30 January 2017

Colour Inkspiration 2

I find it exciting to be part of a new challenge and am pleased to have got this entry in for number 2 on the very last day of the school holidays. Work tomorrow....

I do love the soft and romantic colour combination on offer by the team at Colour Inkspiration. Ask to join this Facebook challenge group, if you haven't already.

My most recent acquisition is the Special Reason bundle, available in the new Occasions catalogue. Although the Stylish Stems framelits are absolutely, amazingly adorable, for this card I wanted to explore the idea of watercolouring with the stamps. 

The stamps have a slightly distressed finish to them which is even more obvious when applied to watercolour paper. So I stamped them, then added extra colour in places with Stampin' Write markers to help create shadows and highlights before using an aquapainter to blend them. I think it's given them a look of a watercolour painting. 

I've masked in the leaves and used the leaf vein stamp to create some pseudo-branches in the bouquet. The leaves are stamped and not watercoloured as I didn't want to lose the lovely veining on them. The flower centres are untouched except for a lick of Wink of Stella to give them a bit of glimmer.

I masked part of the birthday greeting from the Sale-a-bration set, Avant Garden, for the sentiment. Luckily, I had in my stash some of the retired Wisteria Wonder seam binding and I've paired it with Delicate Details - also a Sale-a-bration set -  to create the grounding for the greeting. The wee nest of Silver metallic thread ties both the circular element of the floral panel and the bling of the rhinestones and Wink of Stella.

Thanks team, for such a wonderful palette to play with!

Card: Wisteria Wonder, Soft Sky, watercolour paper, Whisper White, scrap of Mint Macaron
Stamps: Special Reason, Timeless Textures, Avant Garden, Delicate Details
Inks: Wisteria Wonder, Soft Sky, Mint Macaron, Garden Green
Other: Stampin' Write markers: Soft Sky, Wisteria Wonder; Wink of Stella, Softly Falling embossing folder, Wisteria Wonder seam binding, Wisteria Wonder enamel shape, Silver metallic thread, rhinestones, dimensionals, aquapainter, circle framelit.

Saturday 28 January 2017

As You See It DT Challenge 142

It's so good to have the As You See It challenge back up and running. If you joined us last week for our return, then thank you. If you're just joining us, then welcome! This week we have another sketch for you.

This one turned into a challenge for me as at first I didn't even notice the tucked in elements at each side of the front panel on the sketch we were given! That caused a bit of a rethink!

I've been playing around a lot with wedding and anniversary cards because I'd purchased the Falling in Love DSP and Falling for You stamp set from Stampin' Up plus I recently held a Saturday Special class with a wedding and romance theme. Although this card was not one of the ones I taught, I had all the things on my desk so I naturally played around with them some more - as you do!

I don't know about you, but I find mixing designer papers a bit tricky probably because I so seldom use DSP in my cards. At least with Stampin' Up, you know things will work together.

I'm really liking the lacy edge design from Delicate Details, which is my favourite Sale-a-bration item this year. You can earn the whole set for free with any order of $110. It's so pretty gold embossed but just as lovely in plain ink.

You have until 11.55pm PST on Wednesday 8 February to join us in this challenge. We'd love to see what you do with it.

Card: Sahara Sand, Very Vanilla, DSP from Falling in Love
Stamps: Falling for You, Delicate Details
Inks: Versamark
Other: gold embossing powder, 1/4" Very Vanilla ribbon, lace doilies

Wednesday 25 January 2017

The Paper Players 328

With the summer holidays drawing to a close and return to work looming large, I did not want to waste a chance to play at The Paper Players.

Today was yet another experiment for me. I wondered how things would turn out if I had one bold flower against outlines of foliage, almost acting as a kind of spotlight. I do love Altenew's Peony Bouquet as it's so dramatic and quite challenging to use. It's a multi-step stamp, and I've used the whole four steps for the peony but have only used the outlines for the buds and foliage in the background. I masked them to create a foliage background.

Since this was a friendship card, a yellow flower seemed the right choice.

As this was an experiment, I also made one on a white background with black ink. Sadly, that one just did not look anywhere near as effective has been consigned to the snippets bin.

Update: Delighted to be A Cut Above at The Paper Players this week!

Card: Early Espresso, Crumb Cake, Very Vanilla, So Saffron
Stamps: Altenew Peony Bouquet, Stampin' Up Thoughtful Banners
Inks: Early Espresso, So Saffron, Hello Honey, Delightful Dijon, Tuxedo Black
Other: So Saffron enamel dots, Peony Bouquet die, dimensionals

Monday 23 January 2017

Cas(e) this Sketch 205 and CYCI 145

Today's card takes inspiration from several places. One is the sketch at Cas(e) this Sketch, one is the colour combination from Can You Case It? and the other is a 'how to' tip that I got from a fellow local demonstrator, Carol. There's a small group of local demonstrators who get together, share events and ideas from time to time and she showed us how to do this very cool crackled background using greaseproof paper, an embossing folder and an iron. I've been looking to use this technique in a challenge and today was the perfect chance.

Isn't Carol's background idea lovely? After embossing a piece of greaseproof paper, you put it into a sandwich of paper and iron it. Then you can colour the paper however you like. I've sponged it with two colours, then stamped and embossed over the top. Softly Falling was the embossing folder used, and it's also used on the front of the card base, behind the decorative panel.

The underdragonfly is silver embossed on Island Indigo. The lacy wings have had clear Wink of Stella applied and in real life have a glimmer of their own.

Update: Delighted to be a Top 6 Pick at Can You Case It.

Card: Heavyweight Whisper White, Whisper White for the panel, Silver foil card, Island Indigo
Stamps: Dragonfly Dreams, Awesomely Artistic
Inks: Island Indigo, Perfect Plum, Elegant Eggplant, Versamark
Other: Detailed Dragonfly thinlits, silver embossing powder, Softly Falling embossing folder, dimensionals, Wink of Stella, Metallic shapes, greaseproof paper, iron, sponges.

Saturday 21 January 2017

FMS 271 and SIP 82

Before Christmas I bought myself a MISTI. I wanted one but I had to order it from overseas, so kept putting it off. When I saw one in an actual real shop, I bought it without thinking, so stunned was I to see one. So, I thought it was about time I made it start paying its way and today's card is an experiment in MISTI stamping.

Inspiration comes from two places. Firstly, the sketch at Freshly Made Sketches.

Secondly, the theme challenge at Stamp, Ink, Paper, to incorporate natural elements.

The natural elements occur in a number of ways: the subject matter - trees, the use of greens and browns, the linen twine and the embossing folder which is reminiscent of wood grain or bark. The background is very lightly sponged in Crumb Cake to help bring out the texture.

Card: Crumb Cake, Very Vanilla, Garden Green
Stamps: Totally Trees, Thoughtful Banners
Inks: Elegant Eggplant, Island Indigo, Garden Green, Crushed Curry, Cherry Cobbler, Early Espresso, Crumb Cake
Other: Linen twine, MISTI, Seaside embossing folder, sponge.

Friday 20 January 2017

Inkspire Me 284

By chance the new challenge at Inkspire Me matches up beautifully with the new Stampin' Up supplies I got earlier in the week. Naturally, I needed no more encouragement than this colour challenge to get into my craft room and play around.

The colours in the challenge are all colours that are used in the new Falling in Love DSP. I don't usually use much DSP, preferring instead to use stamps and ink to create my own backgrounds. I often end up buying paper because it's pretty then struggle to use it, so today I made it my own sub-challenge to make sure that I used some.

I spent a bit of time before I was happy with the central flower. I've stamped the flower, put in a layer of vellum then added the outline die cut. The centre of the flower is cut from Sahara Sand then a rhinestone has been added. The vellum toned down the Sweet Sugarplum and let the die cut stand out more and then it's been give a lick of Wink of Stella, which hasn't shown up so well in the photo.

If you live in New Zealand and are interested in any of the products used today, please click on the Shop Now button on the side bar, or visit my Jan Clothier - Independent Stampin' Up Demonstrator facebook page. I would love to be your demonstrator.

Card: Sweet Sugarplum, Soft Sky, Very Vanilla, Sahara Sand, Falling in Love DSP, vellum
Stamps: Falling for You, Special Reason
Ink: Sweet Sugarplum, Sahara Sand, Soft Sky
Other: Layering Oval framelits, Sweet Sugarplum ruched ribbon, Stylish Stems framelits, rhinestones, clear Wink of Stella, dimensionals.
All products are Stampin' Up.

Wednesday 18 January 2017

Playing with Pencils

This is a first for my blog life: a post that is not about entering a challenge. No friends, this post is just because I've been having some fun experimenting. The long summer school holidays give me lots of time in my craft room and in my latest box of Stampin' Up goodies were the new watercolour pencils and some blender pens.

I'd long overlooked blender pens in the catalogue. I didn't really understand what they did. When I wanted to colour, I used ink and water. My days experimenting have given me a new tool in the toolbox. Blender pens are the business when it comes to making watercolour pencils sing! Yep, complete and utter convert.

Blender pens smooth out the pencil lines and make the pencil act like paint but the colour is more intense than with water. I like that you can use the blender pen, like water, to pull colour into an area to easily give variation in colour. I also like that you can pick up colour with the blender pen directly from the pencil lead if you want a strong burst of colour. You can see all this in these pictures.

I like that there seems to be a bigger degree of control with the blender pen and it's generally kinder to the paper. With watercolour paper, or even shimmery cardstock, that's not an issue but it is with the Inside the Lines DSP, available as a Sale-a-bration item.

I'd never really understood the attraction of adult colouring in, although as a stamper I probably should have. But this paper ticks that box. I have just had so much FUN colouring it and then using it to make cards. I've still got a lot of exploring to do.

Today, I'm sharing a couple of my experiments. There's nothing too original about them. Pinterest is full of similar types of things but everyone has their own little spin on them. Here's mine.

If you live in New Zealand and are interested in these pencils ($33.50 for 12) or blender pens (3 for $20) or any other Stampin' Up product, message me or click on the SHOP NOW button in the sidebar. 

Tuesday 17 January 2017

On Board with the Retro Rubber Challenge Design Team

I'm so pleased to be joining the team at Retro Rubber Challenge Blog!

It's such a great idea to have a challenge that uses stamps over a year old. If you're like me, it's so easy to get carried away with new things and put aside the stamps you've already got. This challenge gives you a good reason to go back and revisit your former favourites.

The first challenge of the year, and my first challenge for the team, was indeed a challenge for me. Since in my neck of the woods Christmas is mid-summer and even in winter is doesn't snow, snowflake stamps are not a high priority for me. Luckily, I had bought Endless Wishes - a Stampin' Up Christmas set - for the way you could combine words into your own sentiments. It had three unused snowflakes in the package. I got this set the first year I started stamping, so this set came around Christmas 2014.

Masking and sponging are among my favourite techniques. I cut circles into a paper mask and then stamped the large snowflakes in versamark and heat embossed them with white powder. Then I reassembled the mask, sponged the colours and stamped in the small snowflakes. There is a subtle ombre effect going on as the bottom snowglobe is done in Island Indigo, the middle one in Marina Mist with touches of Island Indigo while the smallest is Soft Sky with a touch of Marina Mist. 

I cut the 'Wishes' three times, once in black. The black bottom layer is offset by a millimetre or two to give a shadow effect. This die and the sentiment are part of the first set of I ever bought from Winnie&Walter and was one of my first forays into online shopping back in early 2015.

I added some rhinestones to the centres of some snowflakes to pick up the bling from the silver glimmer paper mat.

I'd so love to see which of your old stamp sets you're going to dig out for this Retro Rubber Challenge. You have two weeks to join us.

Card: Island Indigo, Silver glimmer paper, watercolour paper, scrap of Basic Black.
Stamps: SU Endless Wishes, W&W Big, Bold and Party
Inks: Island Indigo, Marina Mist, Soft Sky, Versamark
Other: White embossing powder, W&W Big, Bold and Party dies, sponges, rhinestones, circle framelits to make the mask.

Paper Players 327 and Sunday Stamps 144

Over the last few years, I've gathered up a collection of music themed items: papers, dies, embossing folders and a very few stamps. I'm not sure why music seems to be a hard area to find good stamps in but there it is. This carefully hoarded collection has been created because I have a son who is a very passionate composer and performer. Consequently, many scrapbooking layouts have been devoted to musical pursuits! Today I needed to raid the box as his birthday is this week.

For inspiration I've used the sketch at Sunday Stamps and the colour challenge at The Paper Players.

For my extra colour, I've chosen Bermuda Bay.

The musical note embossing folder I bought online a couple of years ago and is a Darice folder. It makes a good backdrop for the clef die cuts.

I cut a black and a Bermuda Bay of each clef, stacked them but offset the black to create a shadow.

So, Happy Birthday son!

Card: Bermuda Bay, Basic Black, Whisper White
Stamps: Stampin' Up Big on Birthdays and Labeller Alphabet
Inks: Bermuda Bay and Tuxedo Black
Other: Darice music embossing folder, Elizabeth Craft Treble Clef dies, dimensionals, black candy dot.

Monday 16 January 2017

Cas(e) This Sketch

It looks as though this is a week for experiments: one yesterday and now one today. When I bought Altenew's Peony Bouquet, two things appealed to me: the multilayered stamping option and the option to use just the outline stamp for water colouring. I've done a few of the former but today is the first attempt at the latter. Inspiration came from the beautiful sketch at Cas(e) This Sketch.

So glad to have this stamp in my collection. Other than some stamps used, everything else is Stampin' Up.

Update: Delighted to be a CTS Favourite!

Card: Old Olive, watercolour paper, Whisper White
Stamps: Altenew Peony Bouquet, W&W Big, Bold and Party, SU Gorgeous Grunge and Timeless Textures
Inks: Rose Red, Old Olive, Soft Sky, versamark
Other: white embossing powder, dimensional, aquapainter, silver metallic thread, metallic shapes

Sunday 15 January 2017

Global Design Project 69

Today's card is also an experiment. What happens if the white space stops being white? For inspiration, I used the colour challenge at Global Design Project.

I've recently made a card in Hello Honey, grey and black. I thought it was a smart and stylish combination so I chose black as my third colour in this challenge to echo that.

And on the inside...

I like the crisp feel and the way the embossed black background takes on the look of pressed tin. To keep it more masculine, I resisted the urge to add a scattering of sequins. Note to self: go for a dark background more often - the result can be a more dramatic card.

Card: Basic Black, Delightful Dijon, Silver foil, Whisper White (inside)
Stamps: Big on Birthdays, Dragonfly Dreams
Ink: Tuxedo Black, Delightful Dijon (inside)
Other: Detailed Dragonfly thinlits, Sparkle embossing folder, Silver metallic thread, metallic shapes, dimensionals
 All products Stampin' Up

Saturday 14 January 2017

FMS 270 and Colour Inkspiration 1

Today's card is inspired by both the sketch at Freshly Made Sketches and the colour challenge at a brand new challenge, Colour INKspiration.

While I'm an 'old hand' now at entering online challenges, Colour INKspiration will be a new type of challenge for me as it is a Facebook challenge site.  So... I hope to get an entry in. 😀 

If you are interested in playing along, their page is here.

Very kindly, the colour challenge rules this time let us play with a minimum of three of the colours. I've used Sweet Sugarplum, So Saffron, Mint Macaron and the tiniest traces of Blushing Bride.

To create the centre panel, I used an acrylic block to stamp the background colours, stamped the outline of the stamp in half strength Staz-on, then watercoloured the image. I added in some additonal textures with the netting stamp from Butterfly Basics and with Timeless Textures before adding the layered butterfly and a few rhinestones. I partially embossed with the Softly Falling folder so that the dots didn't come too far down the card front and I like how they're a bit like falling rain on the flower.

So this card is a mix of old and new. The lace edging is from Delicate Details, a Sale-a-bration item, while the greeting is from Big on Birthdays, available in the new Occasions catalogue. But the centre image is from one of my most used sets, Butterfly Basics - still available from the Annual Catalogue.

Card: Sweet Sugarplum, Mint Macaron, Whisper White, Watercolour paper
Stamps: Butterfly Basics, Big on Birthdays, Delicate Details, acrylic block
Inks: Sweet Sugarplum, Mint Macaron, Blushing Bride, So Saffron, Stazon
Other: Aquapainter, rhinestones, Itty Butterfly punch, dimensional, Stamp'n'Write marker - Mint Macaron.