Thursday, 24 March 2011

Seasonal Sentiments

When I designed the recent hydrangea cards, I was having a hard time finding just the right sentiment, in the right color, and the right font. To me, the feeling of the font says just as much as the words in the greeting.

To achieve the look and feeling, I turned to the trusty computer and some design software to create greetings of "Happy Easter," "Happy Birthday," and "Thank You." I used the font Signet Roundhand, which has an elegant, yet readable, appearance. I created a green ink color that was close enough to use with Stampin' Up's Pear Pizzaz, as well as coloring the greetings in always usable black ink.

If you would like to print and use these sentiments, you can click to open, save and print the pdf document below.

If you found the greeting document helpful, please let me know and leave a comment.

Sunday, 13 March 2011

Baby Bundle

This Bundle of Love (or Baby Bundle) Stampin' Up set is so precious! 
I am still making charity cards for the upcoming Maple Village WI Spring Fayre, so that was a perfect excuse to whip up some 'welcome baby' cards.
I made a selection, using shades of pink, blue and yellow (naturally!). 

Wednesday, 9 March 2011

Night & Day Florals

I've been spending a bit of time with my new Sizzix Big Shot Pro die cutting and embossing machine. If you haven't seen this piece of equipment, it is about three feet long, is more than a foot wide, and weights around 40 pounds! I've outgrown my smaller die cutting machines, and I needed a durable machine that was easy to use and could cut the larger dies. The Big Shot Pro can cut up to 12 by 12 inch paper, cardstock, chipboard, grunge board, cork, etc., and it is able to do just about any die on the market right now.

The new machine fits perfectly with the launch of the Sizzix Big Shot and dies in the upcoming UK Stampin' Up mini catalog. I'm so thrilled that SU here in the UK has decided to introduce Sizzix products, which have been available in the US Stampin' Up catalogs for a few years.

However, I didn't find this out until a few weeks ago, and I had already purchased Tattered Flowers, a Sizzix Tim Holtz Alterations Die. The new SU catty will have two different sized Sizzix floral dies.

I used the Stampin' Up Night & Day designer paper to punch out a range of black and white flowers. You can see from the photos, that the edges of the flowers are curled up; this is incredibly easy to do. I used a handy-dandy wooden chopstick to roll the ends of the flowers. It's best to use designer paper and not hefty cardstock to get the flowers to curl.

Real Red cardstock was run through an embossing folder to create a textured background for the flower.

I've become a bit infatuated with the SU Striped Grosgrain ribbon, and I've used the black striped one on this card design. To dress up the ribbon, a bit of red wire was used to pinch the ends.

Sentiments were created from SU sets Three Little Words and Happy Moments, and they were punched with the Modern Label. I tried different types of brads, eyelets and rhinestones to embellish the cards.

Sunday, 6 March 2011

Baroque Card

Here is one of the card designs that I made for the upcoming Maple Village WI Spring Fayre (see blog entry below). This particular card features the Stampin' Up Baroque background stamp.

I've made the card using two different techniques. The photo above shows the most straightforward technique, which is simply inking up the baroque stamp with Baja Breeze dye ink. This is a very fast card to make, and the Baroque stamp is so stunning on it's own that it only needs a sentiment stamp and a bit of ribbon or embellishment, and 'voila,' you're done!

The other technique is a reverse of the above. The stamp is inked with a VersaMark pad and then the image is heat embossed. 
I tried two different embossing products -- 1) the clear UTEE (Ultra Thick Embossing Enamel) 

and 2) Stampin' Up's fine white embossing powder (below). 

The UTEE gives the image a more oldy-worldy distressed look, while the detailed white embossing powder creates a crisp and sophisticated appearance. 

You also will see by the cards below that I experimented with different colored inks and embellishments.