Tuesday, 4 December 2012

In search of angels

Vintage artwork is always so romantic and alluring, and I was determined to incorporate some of this charm into a Christmas card. To begin with, I needed an angel face, and I found this beautiful tinted photo of a girl from some advertising artwork at the Graphics Fairy blog. In addition, I have used Stampin' Up!'s musical wheel stamp and The Sounding Joy stamp set, featuring "Joy to the World" in the shape of a star. I also used Sizzix die cuts of angel wings and a Tim Holtz crown die cut. Various distressing, antiquing and glimmering techniques were employed to create a finished vintage card. Merry Christmas!

Friday, 30 November 2012

Cute Boots

Another easy-to-make Christmas card, featuring a die cut stocking and matching embossing folder. I did a little sanding magic on the stockings to bring out their charm. The sentiment is Stampin' Up!'s Contempo Christmas, and it is stamped onto a die cut label adorned with eyelets.

Forever Evergreen

These cards were destined for a card tutorial that never materialized! Oh well! Got to roll with the punches at this time of year when folks are busy or catch the flu. (Feel better soon, my dear Angie!) These cards are simple in design and feature Stampin' Up!'s Evergreen set.

Friday, 9 November 2012

Watercolor Winter Festive Cards

These festive Christmas Cards feature Stampin' Up's Watercolor Winter and the More Merry Messages stamp sets.
Ink pads used include the new InColor Gumball Green (perfect for Christmas stamping!) and Cherry Cobbler and Soft Suede. 
 Card stock is Whisper White and Cherry Cobbler, along with some SU coordinating designer papers. You might notice that I used a blade to cut out part of the pine cones so that I could lay them on top of the sentiment layer. Various bows finish off the look.
 Thank you to Sue Dyas for the inspiration for these cards (http://stampinwithsuzieq.blogspot.co.uk).

Saturday, 29 September 2012

Cup of Warmth

It's chilly enough in my neck of the woods to appreciate a cup of hot coffee, tea or cocoa. This card works a treat for Christmas wishes or to send a thoughtful note to a friend on a cold winter's day.

I was itching to break out my new SU Scentsational Season stamp set, featuring a gingerbread man, candy cane, Christmas tree and warm cuppa. Although I didn't use it on this project, the stamp set also has a coordinating SU Framelits die, so that you can easily trim out these stamped images.

The background features Stampin' Up!'s new Early Espresso ColorCore card stock, which is designed for easy distressing with a sanding block. The sanding quickly reveals a lighter core inside this card stock, which also comes in two Christmassy shades of Cherry Cobbler and Gumball Green.

Before distressing your card stock, select an embossing folder that complements your design and run it through your embossing machine. Then lay the embossed card flat, and use the sanding block to remove the top layer of the ColorCore card stock.

The little flags used as accents were created with the SU Bitty Banners Framelits. The sentiment Warm Winter Wishes comes from the new SU Winter Memories stamp set. SU inks used include Soft Suede and Cherry Cobbler.

Tuesday, 11 September 2012

Triple Stamping & Layering

During the summer, I saw lots and lots of cards by Stampin' Up demonstrators featuring three layers of stamping. I wrongly thought that the stamping process would be tedious; I couldn't quite figure out how they were getting all the images to seamlessly connect together. Sometimes, my science brain doesn't work and my physics fail me!

However, the process is sooooooooooo simple! The stamped images on the white cardstock are stamped at the same time by sticking the three layers of white cardstock together. I used a bit of repositional tape to hold the pieces temporarily. Use your stamps to build up images on the cardstock. You want this process to be graphically interesting, so you can turn the stamps different directions, use complementary stamps, or use colored ink combinations, as I have done on these card samples.

Once the images are stamped, you can pull apart the white cardstock and adhere the pieces to the colored background cardstock. Remember to add your ribbon before you stick all the pieces together! Here are the measurements for your layered cardstock pieces:

Colored cardstock:
5.5 x 8.5 inches, folded in half to a 5.5 x 4.25 card
4.5 x 3.25 inches
3.5 x 2.25 inches

Whisper White cardstock:
5.25 x 4 inches
4.25 x 3 inches
3.25 x 2 inches

The birthday card was made by using Pool Party cardstock. The stamps used included Birthday Best and the Itty Bitty Banners, along with the matching SU Framelits die. Alcohol markers were used to shade the cupcakes before the pieces were stuck together. A bit of Bakers Twine and a button completed the card.

The Happy Halloween card includes the Spooky wheel, Wacky Wishes sentiment, and Jack of All Trades stamps. Distressing Essentials tools were used to 'rough up' the Happy Halloween sentiment.

And finally, the Seasons Greetings card was made with the SU Snow Swirled stamps and Sahara Sand and Riding Hood Red ink. A bit of Cherry Cobbler seam binding ribbon dresses up the card.

Monday, 30 July 2012

Something Fishy!

This masculine card was made by creating my own decorative paper by stamping each of the fishy images individually and then coloring with pencils and blending with gamsol mineral spirits. Walnut ink was sprayed lightly onto the cardstock, too. Dies were used to create interesting graphic edges.

Sunday, 29 July 2012

Reason to Smile

Yes, there is a reason to smile, as I am enjoying some vacation time in Colorado! With the bright and sunny weather, and all the hiking trails and things to do, the craft table usually sits unattended. However, I am making an effort to make a few samples while I am here.

I'm starting to remember what it was like in my early stamping days when I hardly owned any stamps or tools! I'm trying to make do with a limited amount of paper, inks and stamps; I have made a couple of mad dashes to local craft stores to pick up a few needed items. For example: as my square punches are in England, I was finding it impossible to cut tiny squares with a large paper trimmer! I finally popped out and picked up a small and pretty accurate little guillotine cutter. However, as you can tell from the samples, a punch or die will always be a more accurate way to cut a perfect square.

Also, my friend Diane and I TWICE visited the Artsy stamp store here in Loveland. Loads of 'thank yous' go Artsy owner, Patsy, who gave us some impromptu technique classes.

The cards attached feature Stampin' Up's recent July bonus stamp, Reason to Smile, which I adore (I'm a sucker for two-step stamping). While at Artsy, I picked up this cute Stampendous stamp, 'I love hearing from you . . . ' and a floral embossing folder from 'Bringing Crafts-Too You.'

Friday, 9 March 2012

Cute Cup Cards

When I first saw these cute on-the-go cup cards on Cindee Wilkinson's Just Sponge It and Becky's Inking Idaho blogs, I knew I would have to make some for myself!

I've used a combination of papers, stamps and colors to create these cards, which will be available at a mini tutorial at my next Craft & Chat class.

Stamps used include Stampin' Up's SWAK, Something to Celebrate, So Happy For You, Outlined Occasions, and Everyday Flexible Phrases.

Which color combination is your favorite cup card?

Cup A: Black Velvet Fleur

Cup B: Gold & Black Swirl

Cup C: Mini Hearts with Ivory Holder

Cup D: Mini Hearts with Black Holder

Cup E: Tan Swirl

Sunday, 26 February 2012

Pretty Peonies

Pretty Peony is a wonderful two-step Stampin' Up set, which allows you to stamp the solid image in one color and come back with the outline image in a different complementary color.

Below is a photo of the solid and outline/highlight stamps from the Pretty Peony set.

I used the lighter color ink (Blushing Bride) on the solid stamp; and then I overstamped the image with outline/highlight stamp (using Cherry Cobbler ink).
Before stamping the flowers, I used an old background stamp, inked in Crumb Cake, to create the subtle effect of woven material.

The background paper is Stampin' Up's Spice Cake, which is a new Designer Series Paper pack in the current UK Spring Mini Catalogue. I've also used Very Vanilla, Crumb Cake, Pool Party and Soft Suede card stock on this card design, along with Soft Suede, Blushing Bride, Cherry Cobbler, and Pear Pizzazz inks.

Choose your favorite sentiment stamps to use with this card. I've used SU Happiest Birthday Wishes and SU Something to Celebrate.

Fly Away!

The Stampin' Up Aviary set is so cute and quirky! Here is a card that I've put together as a kit for my friends to make this coming Wednesday.

As you can see, you can interchange any sentiments you like -- these are from SU's Petite Pairs, Teeny Tiny Wishes, and Something to Celebrate.

In addition, I've used the SU Distressing Essentials, including using the tea stain ink and rubber applicator to add color and age to the paper and one of the precision files to distress the edges of the card stock. While many crafters simply tear the edges of card stock to make it look more distressed, the use of files and sand paper gives more control and a subtle look.

Saturday, 28 January 2012

Sweetheart Treat Box

Here's another project for our upcoming rubber stamping class. This fast and easy Sweetheart Treat Box can be made with any designer card stock or your own hand-stamped decorative 12 by 12-inch card stock.

Tools used: Sizzix die for treat box, Big Shot Pro, Stampin’ Up Sweetheart stamp set, Stampin’ Up Heart of Hearts Embosslits die, ribbon, designer card stock
Put together the box, gluing strategically.

Use the Heart of Hearts Embosslits die to cut and emboss two hearts from designer paper. Ink up the Be Mine heart stamp with Riding Hood Red and stamp onto white card stock; make two hearts; trim them.

Put together red and white hearts, and stick them on the box.

Fill the box with treats for your honey.

Close up the box and decorate with ribbon.

Valentine Calendar

In early January, some of my fellow stamping friends were making lovely creative calendars. I wanted to make one with my stamping club, but our first class isn't until February 1st. By now, they are more interested in Valentine's cards and projects.

My husband, who is very supportive of my hobby and craft but doesn't really 'get it,' suggested: Why don't you make a Valentine Calendar? Okay, I was dismissive at first, but then I thought about it and realized, "What a clever idea!"

The Valentine's Day Calendar was born, featuring a Sizzix mini album die and Stampin' Up's You Are Loved stamp set.

Stamp Set: You are Loved

Ink: Riding Hood Red

Extras: Heart Texture Plate, Sizzix Mini Album Die, Soft Suede Taffeta Ribbon, Brads

Cardstock: Riding Hood Red, Soft Suede/Tan, Decorative/Designer Paper

Die cut pieces: 
1 Large Red (Back)
1 Medium Tan (Middle/Embossed)
1 Small Red (Top/Stamped)
1 Small Designer (Bottom Edge)

Use Riding Hood Red to ink up the heart stamp from the You Are Loved set; stamp onto tan (Soft Suede) card stock. Trim out the heart.

Select a texture plate with lots of little hearts or some other heart motif. Use it to run the medium-sized tan die cut piece through the Big Shot.

Take the small red die cut paper piece and stamp flowers randomly using the Riding Hood Red ink pad. Make sure some of your flowers go off the edge of the piece.

Put together the small red, medium tan, and decorative bottom edge pieces.

Make sure that the overall size does not exceed the size of the large red piece that will go on the back.

Take calendar pieces and punch holes in top corners.

Adhere the December calendar to the tan/middle section.

Use the holes previously punched as guides and punch holes through the tan section.

Add the rest of the calendar pages, ending with February on top. Clasp them in place by using the colored brads.

Attach the heart to this piece using pop up adhesives.

Finish the calendar by adding the large red piece to the back of the calendar.

Enlarge holes at the top using a hole punch.

Take the tan ribbon and add knots (so ribbon will not slip. Tie a ribbon at the front.

Friday, 27 January 2012

Taking Tea with Friends

My sweet friend Diane sent me the lovely Stampin' Up set, Tea Shoppe, for my birthday. She knows I'm a little tea-crazy, and I love my teapots, tea cups, tea mugs, and tea.

As soon as I saw the stamp set, I knew I needed to include it in our upcoming rubber stamping class. First, I needed a little inspiration, so I visited fellow SU demo Cindee Wilkinson's Just Sponge It blog. She had used markers to color directly onto the rubber teacup to create a multi-colored image.

I decided to do the same, but I found it was easier to use the Baja Breeze ink pad to entirely ink up the rubber first. I then used an eye makeup applicator sponge to remove ink from the areas of the flowers and leaves.

Then I took Perfect Plum and Wisteria Wonder markers and colored the flowers on the rubber. I also colored the leafy bits with Lucky Limeade. Once finished coloring, cut out the teacup.

If you are not familiar with coloring directly onto rubber, you can have a look at my Tea Shoppe tutorial.

How to build the card: 

You will want to use the SU scallop edge punch to create a strip of striped paper. Make sure the stripes are pointing down vertically.

This striped strip will be attached to the larger piece of green designer paper to create a nice background layer.

Now, attached a piece of Rich Razzleberry polka dotted ribbon on the seam between the striped strip and green paper. Adhere this to the folded square card.

Run the square purple designer paper through the Big Shot with a scallop frame; it should be about 3 1/2 inches square.

Create a little teabag tag by punching out a label or using an office supply tag like the one on my sample card. Use Perfect Plum ink on the small flower stamp in the Tea Shoppe set to add flowers to the tag; stamp on both sides. Use Lucky Limeade or Baja Breeze to ink up "You suit me to a tea," and stamp onto the tag.

Add pop up adhesives behind the tea cup image. Tuck the string of the tag behind the teacup, sticking it onto some of the adhesive, and then let the tag dangle over the top of the teacup.

Stick the cup onto the top of the scalloped square. You're done!