Wednesday, 21 February 2018

WWC158 - Helen's Masculine "Anything Goes" Challenge

This week's challenge is being hosted by Helen Finlay and was absolute perfect timing, too.  I had to make a birthday card for my grandson and this challenge is our Masculine "Anything Goes" challenge.  How serendipitous is that?

Since he had loved a pop-up card which I had created recently, I decided to create one just for him.  As luck would have it, I had just received a die in the mail which I had ordered with him in mind.  (Don't you love it when things fall into place like that?)

The die-cut on this card is beautiful, isn't it?  I cut it out of gold foil and then used my alcohol Stampin' Blends to add a bit of colour.  My grandson's favourite colour is red and so those drums are gold and red with black feet.  His name begins with an "X" which explains that great big X in the centre of that large drum.  I had such fun making this card because he is a special guy and besides loving to play the drums, he also follows "the beat of his own drum".

As I mentioned, I made the inside of the card a pop-up.  This one is all about his birthday and that great big red star comes out at least an inch or so.  As you can see, I left room in the centre to write something special to our special boy.

Oh, and since his birthday was a couple of days ago, I can tell you that he really was delighted.  He told me it's going into his treasure box. 

I hope you'll check out the wonderful creations by our other Watercooler Artists at our Watercooler Wednesday Challenge.

Wednesday, 14 February 2018

WWC157 - Heidi's "All About Occasions" Challenge

It's my turn to host the challenge this week and it's an "All About Occasions" challenge.  What fun!  There are so many occasions during the year.  Wouldn't you know it, I had a birthday card in mind.  That has to be one of the most frequently celebrated occasions of the year.  After all, everyone has one--birthday, that is.

What's a birthday without a bit of whimsy thrown in?  I've been dying to use the Party Pandas stamp set which I received free with my qualifying order (it's Sale-a-bration time--Woo Hoo!)  But I kept reaching for other newly purchased stamp sets.  Well, all that changed with this card.  I reached for those Pandas and introduced them to ink.

So where's the whimsy, you ask.  I did my usual mix and match bit with my stamp sets and added some fun from the Birthday Memories Suite as well.  Guess what!  That cute little girl and her friend, the Panda, are going to a birthday party.  Are you ready?

Don't you just love it?  I used the matching framelit to cut the little cutie from the Birthday Memories Designer Series paper.  Yes, they work on the patterned paper as well as on the stamped images.  Bonus!  I also used the framelits to cut out those party hats and the little gift which her friend the Panda is carrying.  The clouds?  They're from the Up and Away thinlits set and that wonderful red foil "celebrate" is another free Sale-a-bration item, the Celebrate You thinlits.  The background is just a watercolour wash using Soft Sky and Pear Pizzaz.

But there's more fun inside!  Why just use one Panda when you can use two, after all?  And the Panda inside the card is an especially talented little guy.  He's taken five of the cupcakes (all fussy cut) and is showing off his juggling skills by keeping them in the air.  I've made the inside a "pop out" so that our friend the Panda is standing away from the card and I've added a carefully cut "tree" of window acrylic to his back so that the attached cupcakes appear to be hanging in the air.

I decided to keep the background pale and neutral by adding a piece of Soft Sky cardstock and then the die-cut Happy Birthday (using the Happy Birthday thinlits) in Very Vanilla.  Any more fuss behind our Panda and those sweet cupcakes would not show up as clearly.

And there we have the complete inside of the card.  I hope you love it as much as I do.

I hope you'll check out the wonderful creations by the other Watercooler Artists at our Watercooler Wednesday Challenge.

I'm also entering my card into the following challenges:

Crafting From the Heart #194 - Anything Goes

Pammie's Inky Pinkies Challenge #1806  - Anything Goes

Wednesday, 7 February 2018

WWC#156 - Penny's Feminine "Anything Goes" Challenge

It's a Feminine "Anything Goes" challenge which Penny Hanuszak is hosting this week.  Such fun!  I'm so happy for the excuse to use a stamp set which I've been anxious to try out.

Which stamp set am I talking about?  The Sale-a-bration "Beautiful Peacock" of course.  I've seen some fascinating projects but each time I thought about using it I either came up blank or needed to make something totally different.  Not this time.  This time I'm going all the way.

I began with a piece of Mixed Media paper onto which I scattered some Yellow Brusho crystals and then let them work their magic as I sprayed them with a bit of water.  I love the varying shades of colour which come from one colour of the Brusho.  You never quite know what to expect and that's part of the magic.  Once I had heat dried the colour, I was ready to stamp.

There are some interesting pieces to this particular stamp set.  The peacock is a solid stamp, so you're stamping the colour instead of colouring an outline in.  Since I don't always get a perfect image the first time with a solid stamp, I hauled out my Tim Holtz Stamp Platform so that I could restamp if necessary without having the headache of trying to totally match my initial stamping.  I'm glad I used it because I had to restamp another two times after my initial stamp in order to get the saturated Bermuda Bay colour for my image that I had in mind.   While I had the paper on the platform I chose to stamp the "feathers" that way as well.  I wound up restamping each one so that was a good move.

As you can see from the card, the "feathers" are almost like flourishes or vines.  They do look wonderful, however, especially when you add several together.  I chose to have two Bermuda Bay "feathers" and then added one between them which I heat embossed in Copper embossing powder.  Don't you simply love the contrast?

As you can see, I also stamped a few of the tiny flower images along the "feathers" using Calypso Coral.  I thought the tiny flecks of warm colour in the Yellow Brusho were quite similar in colour to the Calypso Coral.  It doesn't hurt that the warm tones look great next to the Bermuda Bay.

Since I had the one "feather" heat embossed in Copper, I decided to heat emboss the crown and the wing in Copper as well.  As it happened, I had a negative bit of a die-cut lying on my table and it looked almost like the wing.  A couple of snips and it fit perfectly with a band of copper embossing around it.  Serendipitously, the piece had been the retired Bermuda Bay Glimmer paper.  It was clearly meant to be.

As you can see, I also added a few little copper foil hearts.  To finish off, I added tiny pearl embellishments to the centre of each flower as well as to the peacock's eye.

I simply love the finished card, don't you?

I hope you'll check out the wonderful creations by the other Watercooler Artists over at our Watercooler Wednesday Challenge.

I'm also entering my card in the following challenges:

Always Fun Challenges #44 - Anything Goes

Crafty Gals Corner #158 - Anything Goes

Lil Patch of Crafty Friends #75 - Anything Goes

Monday, 5 February 2018

A Musical Birthday

While looking through the challenges I enjoy entering, I noticed that two have the same theme.  Great news!  One card serves both and, since the "Less is More" challenge is celebrating its 7th Birthday, of course I would be creating a Birthday card.

Although both challenges don't ask for "clean and simple", the "Less is More" challenge hosts only clean and simple cards.  The Cardz 7 Guyz is open to many styles.  I decided to simply use a base of Heavy Whisper White and then add the cut-out image of the trumpet-playing raccoon from the gorgeous Birthday Memories Designer Series Paper.  Since the theme is music, I also decided to add a die-cut of musical notes on a staff to trail behind the raccoon.

To add a bit of colour and to anchor my raccoon, I sponged some grass using the retired Mint Macaron ink and also sponged some Soft Sky ink onto the musical staff.

To repeat the red in the raccoon's party hat, I stamped the "Happy Birthday" sentiment using Real Red ink and my retired Endless Birthdays set.  To finish up, I added a tiny punched out red foil heart to the final note on the staff.

I'm entering this fun card in the "Less is More" #364 - Music Challenge

Challenge #187

Friday, 2 February 2018

Amazing YOU

I've loved the You've Got This stamp set since it first came out and have happily watched it continue in each Annual Catalogue.  I suspect its time is nearing the end, but this is one stamp set I will be keeping.  What makes it so special?  Well, for one thing, I love all three sentiments and the font that was used for them.  I also love that terrific, large background grid pattern.  It has seen  its way onto quite a few different cards.  But it's the flower itself that really appeals to me.  This is such a generously sized flower and lends itself to so many types of colouring.  I've used watercolours, markers, alcohol blends and, now, even Brusho.  Each time the flower has come to life and I've been happy with the results.

This time I decided to heat emboss my flower in white embossing powder and then used the Brusho crystals to add colour.  For the bloom I turned to the Gamboge (orange) while for the stem and leaves I used the Moss Green.  I wet the bloom in stages with a wet brush, added a scant number of crystals, and then used a finer brush to move the colour around.  The results, especially once it was dry, were spectacular.  There is a clarity to this Brusho colours as well as a colour shift within the colour one uses due to the variety of colours in the crystals, that one does not see normally when colouring.

I fussy cut my flower and added it to the left on a Whisper White note card.  Then I simply added a die-cut "amazing" and a die-cut "YOU", thanks to the SAB Celebrate You thinlits.  Overall it's a simply constructed card but I think it is extremely striking and dramatic.

I'm going to enter this card in the following challenges:

CASology Week 285 for which the cue word is "Swoon"

LTCCB #19 - February Anything Goes!

Wednesday, 31 January 2018

Watercooler Wednesday Challenge #155 - Anything Goes

Every time we have a fifth week in the month, our challenge has an "Anything Goes" theme.  I love those times because it lets me do what I please.

Of course one of the downsides to an "anything goes" challenge is that my mind goes wild with the possibilities.  I really have to rein myself in and force myself to stick to a project.  This time I decided to create a nice, large shadow frame using the wonderful images from the Myths & Magic Suite.  Yes, even that opened the door to a lot of choices but in the end I decided to concentrate on an "under-the-sea" theme.  Enter the mermaids and seahorses!

Of course even that meant I had to make some major decisions.  First I thought of having a treasure chest and then, before I began cutting out some of my Wood Textures DSP, I thought about having the stone portion of the wishing well from the Bright Wishes stamp set.  I could imagine something like that in a flooded area, taken over for use by the sea creatures.  In fact, a mermaid and her sea serpents could easily store their jewels there, right?  (Yes, the dragons became sea serpents in this little scene--a little "snip" and those wings were history and who needs fiery breath underwater?)

The images are all cut from various Designer papers:  the Myths & Magic Specialty Designer Series paper (mermaid, dragons, branches, and seahorses) and the Naturally Eclectic Designer Series paper (jewels and the background ombre piece).  The long grass is cut with the Swirly Scribbles Thinlits and the "amazing" is cut with the Sale-a-bration Celebrate You Thinlits.  That wonderful wavy watery look in the background is created by the Seaside Embossing folder.

I love the way this shadow frame turned out, don't you?

I hope you'll check out the wonderful creations by the other Watercooler Artists over at our Watercooler Wednesday Challenge.

I'm also entering this piece into the Make My Monday  Challenge #63 - Fancy Folds

I've entered this piece in the Crafty Creations Challenge #359 - Anything Goes as well.

And, finally, I've entered this piece in the Simon Says Wednesday Challenge - Anything Goes

Wednesday, 24 January 2018

Watercooler Wednesday Challenge #154 - Judy's "All About Christmas" Challenge

I have to admit that it feels a trifle odd to be making a Christmas card just a month after Christmas but on the positive side, I'm starting on my stash for this coming Christmas.  Judy is hosting our challenge this week and, yes, it's "all about Christmas".

Of course I'm immersed in the Occasions Catalogue at the moment.  My excitement over my "new toys" hasn't waned yet and it was hard to tear myself away.  But then I thought, why wait?  Surely I could think of a way to use my new sets in a manner that would work for Christmas cards.  I knew that the Waterfront set could easily work but since last week's challenge card featured that set, I wanted something new.  And new it is.  I decided to see what could be done with the Charming Cafe bundle.  I decided to create a mountainside cafe from which one could see the distant trees and mountains.  With the boughs cut using the carried-over Christmas Staircase Thinlits dies and the lamp from the retired Christmas Lampost Thinlits, it was easy to add a festive touch.

It's hard to see, but I coloured the chairs with the Stampin' Dazzle Gold marker (retired) and also stamped along the lower part of the card using the brick pattern from the Timeless Textures set.  The little glittery "ornaments" are put on with the Cherry Cobbler Dazzling Details (retired), and the "NOEL" is die-cut using the Christmas Stockings Thinlits.  Oh, and the embossing folder I used is the Sparkle ef.

I hope you'll check out the awesome cards by the other Watercooler Artists over at our Watercooler Wednesday Challenge.

I'm also entering this card into the Merry Monday Christmas Challenge #274 which is all about snow.

And finally I'm adding this card into the Sisterhood of Crafters - Dashing Through the Snow challenge since it is all about snow.

Wednesday, 17 January 2018

Watercooler Wednesday Challenge #153 - Gail's Masculine "Anything Goes" Challenge

Gail is hosting our challenge this week and it's all about the men in our lives, young or old or in-between.  That's right, it's a Masculine "Anything Goes" challenge and it's right on time for a birthday that's coming up in my family.

Stampin' Up! is beginning to offer quite a few stamp sets which are great for a more masculine looking card.  One of the latest offerings in the new Occasions Catalogue is the very different Waterfront set.  What makes it different?  Well, the finished stamped images look as if one has taken a brush and done a bit of watercolouring.  There seems to be no end to the scenes one can create using this set.  All it takes is a bit of imagination and practise.

I'm making this for my nephew and the scene is similar to a look down Christina Lake at sunrise.  I know he always enjoyed going to the lake when he lived in British Columbia and will enjoy the card now.  I've used a number of different mediums to complete the scene.  First I mixed some Brusho crystals with water and set my scene.  I painted in the sky and water using the Prussian Blue and then painted in the Yellow where I knew the sun and the reflection would be.  I also added some Gamboge to the reflection.  After that I began stamping with my inks:  Smoky Slate, Old Olive, Mossy Meadow (retired), Crushed Curry and Peekaboo Peach.

Once I had added the mountains, the trees, the reflection and the sun, I knew that the scene needed a bit more.  So I added the birds (the three smallest from the High Tide set).  Then I took my Stampin' Blends and used the Crumb Cake to add some brown to the mountains and also between the trees to give the impression of cliffs.

The sentiment is also from the High Tide set and is stamped using Soft Suede.  I didn't ink up the "shine" because I wanted to add a die-cut instead.  I took the "sunshine" from the Sunshine Wishes thinlits, cut the word out of a piece of copper foil, and then simply cut away the "sun".  I think it's perfect for the card, don't you?

I hope you'll check out the wonderful creations by the rest of the Watercooler Artists over at the Watercooler Wednesday Challenge.

I've added my card to the Simon Says Stamp Wednesday Challenge which is all about adding a sentiment. 

Wednesday, 10 January 2018

Watercooler Wednesday Challenge #152 - Kath's "All About Occasions" Challenge

It's time for that new "All About Occasions" Challenge we introduced before Christmas and this time it's hosted by Kath Ricks.  I love this challenge because there are so many occasions which we celebrate throughout the year.

I decided on a birthday card because that is, without a doubt, the occasion that comes up most frequently.  I had ordered the new Bird Banter stamp set before Christmas and last week, finally had a chance to play with it.  Those birds make me smile.  And the types of birds lend themselves to some awesome colouring.  For my card I turned to the new Stampin' Blends.  Didn't the parrot turn out wonderfully bright?  I love the shading that's possible with the Blends as well as the lovely brilliant colours.

The stamp set comes with the branch and additional leaf and flower stamps.  I decided to add quite a bit of foliage and some flowers to add to the birthday fun.  And the sentiments that come with the set--so much fun!

I hope you'll check out the wonderful creations by the other Watercooler Artists over at our Watercooler Wednesday Challenge blog.

I'm also entering this card in the Inkspirational Challenge #151 which is "all about stamping".

And I'm entering it into the Addicted to Stamps and More Challenge #274 which is "clean and simple"

Wednesday, 3 January 2018

Watercooler Wednesday Challenge #151 - Charlotte's Feminine "Anything Goes" Challenge

Welcome to the brand new year and to another Watercooler Wednesday Challenge.  I'm so happy we're starting the year with Charlotte's Feminine "Anything Goes" challenge.  I began playing with my Brushos over the holidays and am anxious to show off the results.

But before I get around to showing off my card and telling you how I created it, I want to give a heartfelt welcome to our new Watercooler Artist, Helen Finlay.  You can read a short bio about Helen and see her photo over at the Watercooler Wednesday Challenge post.

* * * * * * * * * * 

I had never heard about Brushos.  Well, that's not quite true.  I had read the name in passing when viewing the posts of quite a number of our participants but didn't look into it any further.  That is, until Stampin' Up! announced that five colours would be released in the new Occasions Catalogue.  Did I want them or not?  Well, I had seen some remarkable results featured by some awesome crafters, time to check them out more fully.

Brusho watercolour crystals are produced in Sheffield, England and are simply remarkable.  The tiny crystals "explode" with colour when sprayed with water or immersed in water.  Using them isn't just a matter of having a colour, dipping in your brush, and painting your image.  It can be that simple but it can be so much more.  For my card I first stamped my rose image from the Rose Wonder set, using Versamark and then heat embossed it with silver embossing powder.  Then, once that was set and hard, I sprayed the rose and leaves with water and tapped out a few crystals, green for the leaves and red for the rose.  I used a damp paint brush to spread the colour, leaving areas darker in places and lighter in others.  Once that had dried completely, I fussy-cut the rose and leaves and attached them to a piece of Heavy Whisper White which I had previously prepared by tapping out just a very few green crystals and then spraying them.  I like the resulting splatter effect.

The border of the Heavy Whisper White is also heat embossed using silver embossing powder as is the sentiment.  Once finished, the piece was mounted on a base of Heavy Whisper White.

I found the Brusho colours to be incredibly brilliant and am anxious to try them out with some other projects.  I hope you'll decide to try them out as well.

Please check out the wonderful creations by the other Watercooler Artists over at our Watercooler Wednesday Challenge this week.

I'm also playing along with the CAS Watercolour Card Challenge for January since it's all about birthdays.

Monday, 1 January 2018

Inkspirational #151 - Stamping only

It's been a while since I did nothing but stamp.  My cards are usually a combination of stamping, die-cuts, colouring and whatever else appeals at the moment.  Of course I had to have a go at a challenge that demanded nothing but stamping.

I turned to a number of sets which I haven't used for a while.  For my background I used the Work of Art set and placed my grass as well as a couple of clouds.  I'm not at home and so finding ink that would work was a challenge in itself since I just grabbed my Memento stamp pad and Stampin' Blends to play with while house-sitting.  I did find a few mini Distress inks and they worked out perfectly well.  My clouds, therefore, are Milled Lavender and the grass is Shabby Shutters.

I turned to the Sheltering Tree set for the rest of my images.  The tree is stamped using Walnut Stain while the leaves are Shabby Shutters.  For the swing, I turned to my black Memento ink.  I also used the Memento ink for my sentiment which is from the new stamp set coming out in the Occasions Catalogue, Bird Banter.

It's surprising what one can do even when away from home and all the products that are usually at hand.

As I said, I'm playing along with the Inkspirational #151 challenge with this card.

Sunday, 31 December 2017

HLS January Watercolour Challenge

Wow, we're already into a brand new year!  I hope that 2018 is a wonderful year for everyone.

This month it's Anything Goes for the HLS Watercolour Challenge but you may like to play along with our optional twist of sequins.

I'm so excited to be part of the Happy Little Stampers Watercolour Challenge Design Team.  As you all know, I love watercolouring and so I'm looking forward to pushing the limits for this challenge.  

For my image I went slightly oversized and wound up with a 4 1/2" x 6 1/4" card.  But bigger is better, right?  My base is white followed by a layer of Pacific Point.  My image is stamped on a piece of Mixed Media paper and heat embossed using white embossing powder.  After that I went a bit wild with my new Brusho watercolour crystals.  What fun they are!  Truly, you always wind up with something a bit different since each colour is made up of many different coloured crystals.  For this gorgeous Penny Black image I used Scarlet and Ultramarine.  Instead of wetting my image first, I tapped a few crystals onto the image and then sprayed it with water.  Lightly.  I didn't want the red spreading everywhere, after all.  Around the image, I used the blue and added a few red crystals to the mix.  

When it came time for my sentiment, I doubled up.  I used one at the top left and heat embossed it using white embossing powder.  For the second sentiment, I heat embossed it using copper embossing powder.  Finally I added a few sequins and my card was done.

As always, there is lots of inspiration over on the Happy Little Stampers Blog, and don't forget that you could win the prize this time!

And guess what!  Our winner for this challenge will receive a $20 coupon to spend at the shop.  Check out all the details HERE


Wednesday, 20 December 2017

Watercooler Wednesday Challenge #150 - Heidi's Masculine "Anything Goes" Challenge

This is a two week challenge since we're getting closer and closer to Christmas.  I have so much left to do!  Thank goodness for some extra time to begin doing it.  In the meantime, I'm hosting this challenge and it's all about the men in our lives--no matter what the age.

This challenge couldn't have come at a better time.  I have my nephew's birthday coming up in January, after all.  I decided to use the Eclipse Technique for  the card as well as the new and exciting stamp set free with a qualified purchase for Sale-a-bration.  Yes, that's coming up in January, too.  Of course the Epic Celebrations set can be used for both guys and gals, but for my over-abundance of guys in the family, it is perfect.

I used the image of the sneakers as well as the headphones.  Perfect for the techie in my life and it also fit beautifully on the large numbers from the Number of Years bundle.  I kept to just a few tones for my colours, using Whisper White, Smoky Slate, Bermuda Bay and a background from the wonderful Wood Textures Designer Series paper stack.

I hope you'll find time to play along and create a card for our Watercooler Wednesday Challenge.

I'm also playing along with the Party Time theme over at the Simon Says Stamp Wednesday Challenge.

Monday, 18 December 2017

Addicted to CAS #126 - Sparkle

When I saw the theme for this challenge, I knew exactly what I wanted to do.  After all, the brand new Myths & Magic Specialty Designer Series Paper has more sparkle built into the heavier-than-normal sheets than any I've seen before.  It's gorgeous!

I chose to fussy-cut the dragon from one of the sheets.  He has major sparkle and a real attitude.  Perfect for his job protecting the huge jewel which I stamped using the images from the You're Priceless set.  I didn't have to hand cut that image since, luckily, it uses the die from the Oh So Eclectic bundle.  For some major sparkle I pulled out my retired Crystal Effects, painted that onto the jewel, and then covered it with the incredible Dazzling Diamonds glitter.  You almost have to wear sunglasses when the light hits that glitter.

I'm playing along with the Addicted to CAS challenge #126 with this card.

I'm also playing along with the HLS December Anything Goes With Dies challenge.

Sunday, 17 December 2017

Less is More Challenge #359 - You Are Amazing

I've been looking at the Hostess stamp set, Feathery Friends, for quite a while now.  I liked it enough to add it to an order some months back but until now inspiration escaped me.  With this challenge, however, I got the glimmer of an idea and decided to run with it.  Keeping it clean and simple opened the door for me.  Funny how that works.

The main reason I bought this set is because I thought it would be fun to play with my Stampin' Blends colouring all the little bits and pieces of the images.  I decided to make a 4" x 4" card with a Whisper White base and added a die-cut cross-stitched circle in Whisper White for the stamped and coloured images.  Fitting it all into the circle worked out perfectly.  Using the Stampin' Blends was a pleasure.  I'm happy with the results.

I'm playing along with the Less is More challenge for this card.

Wednesday, 13 December 2017

Watercooler Wednesday Challenge #149 - Marsha's "All About Occasions" Challenge

Marsha is hosting a brand new challenge this week called "All About Occasions".  When you think about all the occasions which one celebrates during the year, you can imagine how many different card themes are possible.

Since Christmas is just around the corner and I still need some more Christmas cards, that's the occasion for which I created my card.  My husband and I were in Calgary at the end of last week and I found a small but absolutely packed-full-of-goodies crafting shop and spent some time (and money) discovering and buying new treasures.  One of those is the Cling Fox Friend stamp by Stampendous.  I love snowmen and I love foxes.  How could I have passed it up?

My base of Soft Sky followed by a piece of vellum which I embossed with the retired Northern Flurry embossing folder.  I topped that with a frame of Real Red to hold the vellum down without showing the glue and also for the effect of the red frame.  My images are all colouring using the Stampin' Blends (love them!).  The "Let it Snow" is an off-brand die-cut and the snowflake is cut using the Seasonal Layers Thinlets.  A scattering of rhinestones, and the card was done.

I hope you'll check out the wonderful creations by our Watercooler Artists at the Watercooler Wednesday Challenge this week.

I've also linked up my card to the {PIN}spirational Challenge #205 which  is all about Winter and snowmen, etc.

I've linked it up to the Cardz 4 Guyz Challenge which is all about snowmen.

And, finally, I've linked it up to the HLS December Christmas Challenge which is anything goes.