Monday, November 30, 2020

"COMING HOME" HELLO

 

Every once in a while, I find myself really pleased with the way a card has come together.  This is one of those cards.

It's colorful and has layers, dimension, texture, glimmer, and bling.

The Whisper White cardstock was sponged with Pool Party ink and then embossed with one of the Wrapped in Texture embossing folders.  The snowy hillside was die-cut with one of the Home Together dies and brushed with the Clear Wink of Stella brush.  From Crumb Cake cardstock, I stamped the house image and then colored it with Stampin' Blends markers, and it was adhered with Stampin' Dimensionals.  The sentiment (from Life is Beautiful stamp set) was stamped on Crumb Cake cardstock using Real Red ink.  A piece of Linen Thread was wrapped around the sentiment strip and tied in a bow before adhering it to a strip of Pretty Peacock Scalloped Linen Ribbon, which was adhered to the Whisper White layer.  A strip of Pool Party cardstock was embossed with the Winter Snow embossing folder prior to adhering it to the Soft Sea Foam card.  After the Pretty Peacock layer was embossed with one of the Greenery embossing folders, it was adhered to the card front.  The Whisper White layer was then adhered to the Pretty Peacock cardstock, and then the Holiday Rhinestone Basic Jewels were put in place.

It's a neat card, huh?


Friday, November 27, 2020

FROSTY POINSETTIA

 


Purple is a color that you don't normally associate with Christmas and, in some parts of the world, frost and cold are also non-existent during this holiday.  I don't think poinsettias are ever purple, but I really like the look of this one.  


That gorgeous designer paper is from Stampin' Up!'s Feels Like Frost collection that was carried over from last year.  Isn't it just gorgeous?  My poinsettia petals were cut from Highland Heather cardstock using the Poinsettia dies, and I used a Sponge Dauber to lightly add Whisper White Craft ink to give them a soft velvety appearance.



A couple of things worth noting . . . see the silver foil strip of paper under the sentiment?  All of the papers in the Feels Like Frost collection have a gorgeous photographic image on one side and hand-drawn designs with silver foil on the other side.  That shiny foil strip was cut from one of the gorgeous papers specifically to tuck beneath the sentiment (which is from the Poinsettia Petals stamp set)--just a pretty little detail for the recipient to discover.  Another fun detail are the glimmery die-cut sprigs.  They were die-cut from retired glimmer paper, and the purple one was colored with a Highland Heather Stampin' Blends marker.  It's too bad that Stampin' Up! no longer carries white or silver glimmer paper because it colors beautifully with Stampin' Blends.


I've always thought of blues when I think "frosty", but this pretty paper will now have me also thinking of purple.  What do you think?  Do you like the purple poinsettia?



Sunday, November 22, 2020

ONLINE EXTRAVAGANZA . . . GET READY!!!

 


Tuesday, November 24th, is the big day when select products from Stampin' Up!'s annual catalog will be 10% off.  Following is a list of the products excluded from the sale:

CLICK HERE TO SHOP WITH ME

Considering how many awesome products are in the annual catalog, the list of exclusions doesn't seem all that long.

MAKE YOUR LIST and be ready to SHOP EARLY because some products will sell out!

I would appreciate it very much if you use my current host code:  PNPYP2X2.

Friday, November 13, 2020

JOSEPH'S COAT TECHNIQUE . . . FALL THANK YOU CARDS

 


Many years ago, I declared that the Joseph's Coat technique was dead (to me) and that I would never, ever try it again.  Oh, the number of failed or inconsistent attempts that ended in aggravation!  I still don't know why I was unsuccessful all of those times, but a birthday card that I received recently from my sweet friend, Laura, prompted me to try Joseph's Coat one more time.  Following is a photo of Laura's card:


Isn't it gorgeous???  

Now, Joseph's Coat of yesteryear always finished with a layer of black ink, and I LOVED that Laura had used Shaded Spruce instead!  I also loved the prism foil paper that she used for accents on the card, and I'm surprised that I managed to capture some of that beautiful essence in the photo.


So this is what I did on my cards.  I sponged Pear Pizzazz, Just Jade, Garden Green, and Soft Sea Foam ink onto Whisper White cardstock.  The leaf images from Forever Fern stamp set were stamped onto the cardstock with VersaMark ink and then heat-embossed with Clear Stampin' Emboss Powder, which allowed the sponged colors to show through but also resist the Shaded Spruce ink that I sponged all over the cardstock.  It wasn't totally necessary, but I used a tissue to wipe any wet ink from the embossed images.  To restore the shine of the embossed images, I heated them again with the heat tool.  Lastly, I cut down the cardstock and adhered it to the embossed Soft Sea Foam cardstock, which was adhered to the Shaded Spruce card.  Die-cut pieces from a couple of Forever Flourishes dies were adhered around the sentiment, which consisted of beautiful cuts from the Tasteful Labels dies and sentiment from Butterfly Gala stamp set.


The foil cardstock that I used on my cards was the green from the retired Noble Peacock collection, and the sequins were actually a perfect match, although they don't look like it in the photos.


Many thanks to Laura for inspiring me to try Joseph's Coat one more time.  I loved her card so much and was pleased with my success while making these four special thank you cards.


Tuesday, November 10, 2020

FA LA LA . . . SIMPLE CHRISTMAS CARD

 


Have you started working on Christmas cards?  

I started earlier this year than I have in a long time (maybe ever), and it feels so good to have a selection of cards ready to mail.  Still, I enjoy making Christmas cards, so I continue to make them from time to time.  

The card that I'm sharing today has one of my favorite holiday color combos  . . . Coastal Cabana, Real Red, and Whisper White, complete with sparkle and bling.  Normally, I use Pool Party instead of Coastal Cabana, but either color keeps the card clean and makes the red pop.

Although I have new stamps and dies that I have barely used (or not used at all), this card features Into the Woods dies from last year, and "falala" is from the retired Seasonal Frame thinlits.  I used the Winter Snow embossing folder on the Whisper White cardstock, and I wish it showed up better in the photo.  The silver trim and sequins are also from the past, but I can't stop using either of them.  I absolutely LOVE the silver trim and am so glad that I bought several spools of it, although my supply is dwindling.  I think the way it curls adds so much to a project, and it's just festive.

Now that I'm ahead with my card-making, I really should start addressing and decorating envelopes.  It will be wonderful when that gets done!


Wednesday, November 4, 2020

EASY CHRISTMAS CARDS USING FUSSY CUT BITS FROM "TRIMMING THE TREE" DESIGNER SERIES PAPER

 


When I first started working on Christmas cards in September (or was it August), I stamped, cut, and colored a LOT of trees from the Coming Home stamp set.  A handful of the trees ended up in an old stamp case on my table, to which I continued to add unused bits.  Those unused bits consisted of houses and sentiment strips that I had cut from some of the designer papers in the Trimming the Tree collection.  I'm not one to get excited about fussy cutting, but I have to admit that cutting the houses and trees from the DSP was rather relaxing.  I used my paper trimmer to go ahead and cut the Christmas greetings, mostly because I didn't plan to use the other side of that paper, and all of the pre-cut bits were in that one stamp case--all ready to use.

The case is nearly empty after putting to use a lot of the pre-cut bits on cards such as the ones I'm sharing today.  These cards were SO fun and quick to make!  I began by laying out the greetings in the order that I wanted to use them to build my "trees", and then I cut five pieces of 4" x 5-1/4" Whisper White cardstock.  One of the embossing folders that I used on two of the cards (Cable Knit) is retired, but the other one is Winter Snow.  Once my embossed layers were ready, I began the design process by gluing the greeting strips to a 1/4" strip of Early Espresso cardstock.  As you can see from the photos, some of the greeting strip trees were topped with a Gold Glimmer star, and some were topped with one of the fussy cut houses--or both.


A torn strip of Whisper White cardstock was used to create a snowy mound at the base of my trees, and I used stamps from the Festive Post stamp set to decorate that layer using Real Red and Balmy Blue ink.  Before adhering the Whisper White layer to the Night of Navy card, I trimmed the cardstock to fit beside the Mossy Meadow Diagonal Stripe ribbon.  I played around with different arrangements for the ribbon, and my favorite was on the card above . . . straight cut ribbon adhered near the fold.


The Whisper White cardstock layer on the inside of the card was decorated with images from Season Like Christmas and Snow Front stamp sets using Real Red, Soft Sea Foam, and Soft Suede ink.


Not bad for fussy-cut bits from designer paper, huh?  And . . . as you can see in the second photo, I still have two whole sheets of the two designer papers (one with the houses, one with the greetings) that are ready to be cut up and used to make even more cards!


Tuesday, October 27, 2020

"PLAID TIDINGS" QUILT CARD

 


I did a thing last week.

I did a thing that sealed a commitment.

I'm sorry if your mind went to the gutter, but I sealed a commitment . . .  to sewing . . . by purchasing a sewing machine.  

Of course, I had to sew all day on Saturday, and it was just as nice as any other time that I've sat down to sew except this time was a wee bit more fun.  I haven't read the manual just yet (I plan to) but, so far, I haven't managed to mess up anything.

About the plaid quilty card.  I went to a sewing center last week because I was hoping to get good insight and information, and the lady who helped me was . . . well . . . really helpful.  I called her the afternoon following my initial visit to see if I could come in to purchase the machine she demo'd, but there wasn't going to be enough time for me to get there before she needed to close.  She had a physical therapy appointment scheduled for that afternoon, but she ended up cancelling that appointment (said she really didn't want to go anyway--ha!) so I could go in and take a brand new machine out of her store.  She said she wanted to sit down with me to make sure I understood how to wind a bobbin, thread the machine, and a couple of other things.  I very much appreciated EVERYTHING that she did to make it possible for me to bring that new machine home, so I made this card for her.


Featured Stampin' Up! products include:

Cardstock:  Crushed Curry, Whisper White, Blackberry Bliss

Designer Series Paper:  Plaid Tidings

Ink:  Pretty Peacock

Stamp Set:  Daisy Delight (retired)

Die/Embossing Folder:  Autumn Accents (retired), Quilty Top (retired)

Embellishments:  Linen Thread, Holiday Rhinestone Basic Jewels


Don't you love the Fall colors?  I love that the Plaid Tidings DSP has patterns/colors suitable for Fall, Winter, and Christmas.


Saturday, October 24, 2020

"BACK ON YOUR FEET" - (YES, IT'S ANOTHER TRIPLE CUBE POP-UP CARD)

What can I say?  The Triple Cube Pop-Up cards are too fun to make and, from what I hear, they're also fun to receive.  This one features a sweet turtle who's having a hard time, but the thing about being on his back means he doesn't have any choice but to look up, right?




I know the photos aren't the best, but it was dark and I was trying to get the card ready for the next day's mail.  That gorgeous designer paper is from Stampin' Up!'s Forever Greenery collection, and it was fun choosing which patterns to use--and where to put them.  The card really didn't need much else so I added a punched butterfly . . . and, of course, the punched heart because every turtle who's having a hard time needs lots of love.

Friday, October 16, 2020

MY (UNCONVENTIONAL) PERFECT STORAGE FOR MOST USED SEWING TOOLS + MY FIRST ZIPPER PROJECTS

For most of my life, I had z-e-r-o interest in sewing or anything that required a needle and thread.  It seemed comical when I brought a sewing machine into my stamp/craft room years ago, but it was purchased for the sole purpose of sewing on cardstock.  I didn't do much of that because I knew I'd have to watch a video many times (or refer to the instruction manual) if the machine ran out of thread.  I knew nothing about sewing machines, and I didn't really care to learn.  Since getting my sewing corner set up several weeks ago, I have really enjoyed a few small sewing projects.  With each project, there have been certain tools that just needed to be out and within reach.  Thinking about how to have them within reach without having to dig around to grab what I needed, I thought it would be perfect to have a base that I could just stick them into that would keep them upright and a bit separated.  I ended up filling my wool basket with BBs.  See how perfect it is?


In the bottom of the basket, there's approximately 1" of tiny rubberbands.  I needed a few more BBs but, instead of buying more, I just used something that I had that provides a perfect cushioning and lifts the BBs closer to the top of the basket.  So far, I am LOVING this tool basket, and it seems to be taking care of my tools.

When I decided that I wanted a sewing corner in my stamp/craft room, I had a big interest in making projects that could be started and finished rather quickly, as well as projects for which I had a real need.  The same type of projects that first sparked my interest in stamping were kind of the same that sparked my interest in sewing.  I couldn't stop making boxes and 3D items when I was a new stamper, and suddenly I was looking for all kinds of baskets and zippered pouches/bags to sew!  Of course, it would be ideal to have a zipper foot when sewing zippers, but I have to do the best I can without one.  Following are a few projects that I've made.  Don't judge too harshly--I know that my sewing is far from perfect.

Below is the first zippered pouch that I made, and I was sooooooo proud that the zipper looked okay and worked perfectly.  The fabrics used on this project (exterior, lining, and strap) are retired from Stampin' Up!.  The pouch was substantially larger than what I had in mind, so I had to make another (smaller) one:


The smaller triangle pouch is approximately 3.25" or 3.5" on all sides, and it's really cute.  I don't know if I somehow pinched the zipper before taking the photo, but it looks normal in real life:


And then there's the popcorn pouch:


I was nervous and excited to make this pouch, and it's such a nice size.  This was my first project with binding, and there was a hiccup or two:


So this has been a little sewing update.  As for the tool basket, there are probably a lot of items that could have been used but, if you need a similar basket and don't have the perfect filler on hand, try BBs!


Wednesday, October 14, 2020

ANOTHER TRIPLE CUBE POP-UP CARD

 Tomorrow is aunt Betty's birthday, and this is the triple cube pop-up card that I made for her:

She had to have something special, right?

Decorating all of the panels on this card was so much fun, and I fell in love with it again and again along the way.

It's too bad that the flowers on the die-cut cake didn't coordinate with the designer paper, but I at least tried to make sure the coloring was a close match.


Aunt Betty loves flowers, and I suspect that she'll enjoy looking at this card.  I hope so!  Afraid that she might have a bit of trouble figuring out what to do with the card, I included a photo that showed how it should be unfolded and displayed.


Sing "Happy Birthday" to Betty.  And have a cupcake, too!


Sunday, October 11, 2020

A FALL THANK YOU (TRIPLE CUBE POP UP) CARD

 


I have been a tad addicted to making Triple Cube Pop Up Cards.  Have you made one yet?  The one that I'm sharing today is a mini version that was designed to easily fit into an A2 envelope.  I used instructions that Dawn Griffith shared.  It's really easy to make . . . score a piece of 7" x 7-1/2" cardstock (with the 7-1/2" edge at the top of the scoring tool) at 1.75", 3.5", 5.25", and 7".  Turn the cardstock so that the 7" edge is at the top of the paper trimmer, and cut two strips that are 1.75" wide.  These two strips are the short cubes that get adhered to the tall one.  I adhered the DSP to the tall cube prior to assembly, but I waited until the sentiment corner strips were adhered before adhering DSP to the short cubes.  


I used Stampin' Up!'s Plaid Tidings DSP to decorate this project.  I am in love with those plaids!  As you can see, I also used the Forever Gold Laser Cuts to embellish this card.  Two non-Stampin' Up! punches (which I have had for YEARS) were used to cut the tiny leaves from a scrap piece of mirrored gold that I didn't use from the laser cuts.  It's hard to tell from the photos, but I used one of the Greenery embossing folders on the Very Vanilla squares.


Those two leaf punches were also used on the DSP that I adhered to the back of the tall cube.  The other "back" section is where my message was written for the recipient of this card.


Lastly, I used Pumpkin Pie, Cajun Craze, and Crushed Curry inks to color the envelope.  The stamped leaves are from the Forever Fern stamp set.  As you can see, this card folds as flat as possible for mailing.


Tuesday, October 6, 2020

FESTIVE CHIPPY PUMPKIN

 

I recently received a Chalk Couture order that included Pumpkin Cutouts (which you can see HERE or at the bottom of this post).  While they looked so smooth and pretty right out of the box, I was anxious to put some stain and paint on the tall one.  I had a design in mind, and it was 100% inspired by a pumpkin that one of my team leaders had created.  She had used images from the September Club Couture transfer ("Fall Blessings") in such a unique way, and I fell in love with it.  Following is a photo of the transfer:


Unless you have worked with Chalk Couture's products, you may not understand the thrill.  The good news is . . . there's a fix for that!  Do yourself a favor and visit my web site to see all that Chalk Couture has to offer.  While my pumpkin took some time, effort, and supplies, I normally just grab one of my framed chalkboards and some Chalk Paste when I'm ready to create a festive decoration.

And just for your viewing pleasure, following is a photo of the Pumpkin Cutouts as they arrived--naked and ready for dressing up:


Aren't they adorable?  I haven't completed the smaller pumpkin yet, but I'll either paint it or use one of background transfers to decorate it.


Monday, September 28, 2020

"FOREVER FERN" CARD + LITTLE BITS & LAYERS

 


A month or so ago, I was scrolling through Instagram (which is a late-night addiction of mine), and I came across this gorgeous card created by Helene den Breejen.  I liked the simplicity of the design with it's little bits of layers, so I decided to make something similar.



I used Stampin' Up!'s retired Brick & Mortar embossing folder (just because they retired it doesn't mean that I'm ready to stop using it), and I lightly sponged Crumb Cake ink on it.  I also added a strip of Mint Macaron cardstock to the left edge--but not before distressing it.  I really like that look and don't want to forget to use it again.  Images from Festive Post and Forever Fern were stamped onto scrap Mint Macaron cardstock with VersaMark ink and heat-embossed with white embossing powder.  I then punched the images with the Rectangular Postage Stamp punch and sponged the edges with Mint Macaron ink.  Finishing touches were the application of sequins and a twine bow.  All that was left to do was put the card in the mail to my parents!

Tuesday, September 22, 2020

"LIFE IS BEAUTIFUL" FALL CARD

 

It's the first day of Fall, and I love it!

We've been so fortunate to experience a few days with breezy, cooler temperatures.  Actually, it doesn't usually get cool this early, and I have thoroughly enjoyed it.  Not that anyone has ever asked me if the seasons get equal time in North Carolina, but I can honestly say that they do not.  It seems to me that Fall turns quickly into Winter, which turns too quickly into Spring and then, if you blink, you've missed the opportunity to enjoy the beauty of Spring because . . . BAM! . . . it's Summer for the next 8 months.  I might be slightly exaggerating, but Summer (with it's heat, humidity, bugs, frogs, lizards, snakes, spiders, etc.) definitely seems to last longer than the other seasons.

To celebrate the beginning of Fall, I used Stampin' Up!'s "Life is Beautiful" stamp set to create a few cards to send to the elders.  

Other Stampin' Up! products featured on my cards include:

Cardstock:  Crushed Curry, Cajun Craze, Very Vanilla, Crumb Cake

Designer Paper:  Plaid Tidings

Ink:  Crushed Curry, Cajun Craze, Pumpkin Pie, Merry Merlot, Old Olive, Rich Razzleberry, Soft Suede

Embossing Folder:  Basket Weave (retired)

Punch:  Washi Tape (retired)

Stampin' Write Marker:  Pumpkin Pie

Before long, I'll walk around with a leaf blower, which will be very pleasing to Ramsour.  He LOVES a fluffy nest of leaves!






Wednesday, September 16, 2020

FALL FRAMED CHALKBOARD

 


I am so ready for Fall and was excited when I saw that the September Club Couture transfer was this:

Isn't it great?!?!  I especially love that the word "blessings" can easily be used by itself on other projects, and what's not to love about its script design?  

I created an ombre effect on my project by using my finger to swirl/mix the two paste colors (Shimmer Harvest and Fig).  Chalk Couture has several shimmer pastes now, and it's amazing just how much they actually shimmer--they're gorgeous! 


Have you heard about Club Couture from Chalk Couture?  It's a monthly subscription, and subscribers get an exclusive transfer (like "Fall Blessings" shown in this post) and three packets of Chalk Paste.  There are also other perks to being a subscriber, such as monthly promotions.  Learn more and/or subscribe HERE.

Ramsour didn't understand why I wanted to spend time playing with Fall stuff while there were plenty of balls in the yard that needed to be thrown, but wasn't he a good sport to pause and pose for a photo?



Tuesday, September 15, 2020

MY LITTLE SEWING CORNER

I believe my little sewing corner is all set up--at least until I discover that changes are needed.  When I shared photos of the perfect storage unit in this post, I mentioned that I was in the process of setting up a corner of my room for sewing.  I've had a few requests for photos of the finished sewing corner, so here you go:


If you didn't believe me when I said it's a "corner", now you can see for yourself that it is definitely a corner.  It's a small one, but it's also perfect!  So far, I have the perfect amount of space to move around, and it helps that everything is at my fingertips (or within reach).  My MacBook doesn't reside on the table, although I have used it a couple of times to refer to a tutorial.  Going forward, I will probably view YouTube from my TV, which is mounted on a wall across the room.


It just worked out that my homemade design wall (which hangs from what was originally purchased as a quilt hanger/holder) has been hanging on the wall by my new sewing corner for several years.  Presently, it displays some wool applique blocks that have never been turned into finished projects.  That's okay . . . I can still enjoy seeing them.


I have really enjoyed this new corner in my stamp/craft room!  The storage unit that I recently assembled and decorated has been SOOOOO handy!  See that little Janome machine?  It was purchased for the sole purpose (many years ago) of sewing on cardstock.  I can still remember the day it arrived and how I watched a Gina K video that demonstrated how to thread the machine and bobbin and how to use the machine.  When I say that I watched Gina's video, I didn't just watch it one time.  I must have watched it 20 times just trying to get the machine threaded!  I knew NOTHING about a sewing machine back then (didn't know much until about a year ago, actually) and pretty much viewed little J as the closest thing to a toy that sews.  Since that time, little J has done a little sewing on cardstock, a LOT of sitting on various cabinet shelves for a few years, and got to come out of hiding last Fall when I decided that I wanted to make a rag quilt.  I ended up making six (6) rag quilts!  Most of them were made with the Singer machine, but most of the blocks for those quilts were quilted on little J.  Just recently, after watching many videos of skilled ladies sewing through nylon zippers with their sewing machines, I wanted to try it.  I had made two zippered pouches but hand-stitched over the zippers and, since I want to make more zippered projects, I became obsessed with wanting to know what would happen if I sewed over the zipper.  I didn't want to risk damaging the Singer's needle (especially since my mother so graciously let me bring that machine home with me), so I apologized to little J for what could possibly happen to his needle as I guided it to, over, and beyond a zipper.  Well . . . little J surprised me once again by being a mini but mighty machine!  His needle just zipped across that zipper like a knife through warm butter, so he earned his place--and job--in the sewing corner.

Fortunately, I have floor space in front of my sewing table to set up a fabric-cutting table as needed, and I like not having to tie up space for that unless/until it's necessary.  I also have a long countertop by my stamping area (on the other end of the room) that has been handy a few times for cutting fabric, so everything seems to be falling into place.  I still have a LOT to learn about sewing but, for now, I'm enjoying small projects.  God help me if I decide that I need as many fabric choices as I have stamps and card-making supplies!  This room, which used to be a garage, is a good size, but I don't know where I'd store a lot of fabric!