Saturday, April 30, 2016

The Shortcut Guide to Paper-Piecing

Hello, Saturday and a new Sisterhood of Snarky Stampers challenge! 

The multi-talented Edna has chosen "Q is for Quilts" for our latest challenge. And by that, we mean paper-piecing of any type. As you'll see if you click over to the main blog, we are giving this one a wide range of possibilities! I went for straight-up paper-piecing, but a lot of it... 

Paper-piecing can add a fun look to an image, but all that careful cutting can be a lot of work. So here's my shortcut... use an image that has matching dies that cut RIGHT ON THE EDGE! The Bird Crazy dies do exactly that. They even have little dies that cut out the eyes, beak and wings! Now that being said, I did still have some fussy-cutting left to do. I decided I wanted the wings in a contrasting paper to the bird's body, but they didn't look right without matching his tail feathers and back. I also cut out the ribbon for the present. I patted some distress ink on an acrylic block, spritzed with water and smooshed it on the bottom of a watercolour cardstock panel so he'd have somewhere to stand. All the papers are from an incredibly old patterned paper pad. 
My friend Glenda is on the team at Seize the Birthday, and for some reason I've never played(!), so I'm going to add my bird to their Anything Goes birthday challenge, as well as the current Wednesday Anything Goes challenge at Simon Says Stamp. 
Not only do we have great inspiration over on the Snarky blog, but we are also introducing some guest designers joining us for the next few months! I hope you'll pop over and give them a warm and snarky welcome, then join us with your own *quilted* creation! 

Supplies: white cardstock, Fluid hot press watercolour paper, Basic Grey PB&J patterned papers, Tim Holtz/Stampers Anonymous stamps & dies, Paper Smooches Birthday Buddies stamps, Versafine onyx black ink, Wow clear & clear matte embossing powder, Paper Smooches word bubbles die, Glossy Accents, pop-dot tape

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Monday, April 25, 2016

Ah, April...

It's April 25th. It SNOWED this morning. It didn't stay, but still. Might as well go back to making Christmas cards. 
First up, a card for the not-quite-finished Muse: ChristmasVisions challenge, where Cornelia is the current Muse with this amazing card: 

Let me show you my card, and then I'll explain how I got from Cornelia's to mine... 

Cornelia's card uses a reindeer (head) image, multi/rainbow colours, and a large panel set to the left. I used multiple colours to sponge a northern night sky, teeny deer instead of a large one, and black glitter paper instead of the stripes down the righthand side. Totally obvious, right? ;) I also spattered some homemade white Perfect Pearls mist over the night sky for some stars/snow (instead of Cornelia's stencilled dots) and clear-embossed both the image and sentiment. 
Next, a card for Merry Monday's new challenge, Let It Snow! (Please no.) Since it happens to be World Penguin Day, I chose to make a penguin card. 

Having made a successful (I hope) sponged night sky, I sponged a daytime one this time. Then I mixed some embossing paste with glitter to stencil the snow. While that was drying, I diecut the hills and misted them with my new shimmer spritz. So sparkly! Keeping in mind it's grey and dreary here, this is the best pic I could get. Imagine in real life...

If the weather doesn't improve tomorrow, I may just add to my Christmas card stock again... 


Supplies: (Noel) Neenah solar white & American Crafts black glitter cardstock, Memory Box Deer in the Field & WPlus9 Pretty Poinsettias stamps, Versafine onyx black & salty ocean, faded jeans, chipped sapphire, seedless preserves, dusty concord & twisted citron distress inks, Zing clear embossing powder, homemade white confetti Perfect Pearls mist, pop-dot tape; (happy holidays) white cardstock, Lawn Fawn Toboggan Together stamps & dies, Versamark, MFT black licorice & tumbled glass & salty ocean distress inks, silver embossing powder, Spectrum Noir & Sharpie markers, Simon Says Stamp falling snow stencil, Dreamweavers glossy white embossing paste, Stampin' Up dazzling diamonds glitter, MFT Scenic Safari die, Tsukineko Sparkle Sheer shimmer mist, pop-dot tape

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Sunday, April 17, 2016

Two More Christmas Cards?

It really is SPRING now, yay! But it seems I still have a few Christmas cards to get out of my system. First up, a card for the almost-over Merry Monday's 200th challenge! 

There are four options, so of course I had to pick two: the sketch and the colours. 

Other than shifting the sentiment banner off-centre, I stuck very close to the sketch. That little kitty and his mega-hat take up most of a regular A2 card, so this one is a little bigger, 4¾"x6½". I embossed him in holographic embossing powder for some fun sparkle. You can see a little bit of it here: 

After colouring him and putting the card together, I added Glossy Accents to the holly berries and Stickles to the furry parts of his hat. 
Next up is Jingle Belles with their annual April challenge to recycle/upcycle something on a Christmas card. 

If a commercial tag on a Christmas present catches my eye, I like to save them in case I can upcycle them later, so I figured this was an ideal time to use one. 

I thought the tag had a retro vibe, so I picked a couple of papers that I felt had that, too. Then while watching some tv, I traced over the ornament on the tag and all the little stars on the grey paper with my Gelli Roll pen. I also switched out the old ribbon on the tag for the silver. After putting everything together, the last step was adding the teeny sequins and, taking my cue from the talented Stephanie Klauck, added a little bit of silver Stickles to the centre of each. (With the end of a toothpick, they really are small!) 
And now... the sun is shining, I think I'll move on from Christmas to spring... 

Supplies: (cat) Neenah solar white & desert storm cardstock, Studio Calico Magical patterned paper, Penny Black Jolly Xmas Kitty & Paper Smooches Swanky Snowdudes stamps, Versafine onyx black & Ranger lilypad green inks, holographic embossing powder, Spectrum Noir markers, glossy Accents, icicle Stickles, fun foam; (glad tidings) white cardstock, Studio Calico Magical patterned paper, upcycled commercial tag, Gelli Roll clear glitter pen, May Arts silver ribbon, pop-dot tape

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Saturday, April 16, 2016


Heat embossing... my all-time favourite stamping technique. So I'm very pleased that Edna has picked it for our newest Sisterhood of Snarky Stampers challenge! 

It hardly seems a challenge! To mix things up a little, I decided to try a twist on a classic technique, emboss resist, by using one of my newest toys, watercolour powder. Here's my card: 

It's such a fun and easy way to get a mixed colour background! I stamped and embossed the plaid background first, brushed the entire panel with water, then sprinkled on the powder. I love the variety of colour you get with even just a single powder. While the panel was drying, I stamped (and heat-embossed, of course, that is what the challenge is all about...) and coloured the cat and ball of yarn with Spectrum Noir markers. The sentiment is computer-generated. 
Then it was simply a matter of assembling everything! A little closeup of the fun background colours: 

I stuck to heat-embossing, but other kinds of embossing count for our challenge, too! Be sure to check out the creations from my sisters in snark as well as our latest Queen of Snark guest designer, Jane.

Supplies: Spectrum Noir & Stampin' Up smoky slate & basic black cardstock, Strathmore mixed media paper, Stampers Anonymous/TIm Holtz Crazy Cats stamps and dies, Hero Arts large plaid pattern stamp, Versamark & Versafine onyx black inks, Zing clear and Wow white embossing powders, Spectrum Noir markers, red Magenta Nuance watercolour powder, pop-dot tape

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Thursday, April 14, 2016

Just Us Girls — Smooshing!

This week is trend week at Just Us Girls, and the trend that they have picked is Ink Smooshing.

I needed a birthday card we could send to my husband's aunt, and decided a little smooshing combined with a yet-to-be-used bird stamp would be just the thing. 

Very basic use of ink smooshing, I know, but it gave me just the look I wanted for the sky. It also meant I could ink right over the pale blue colours without worrying about the background showing through. I inked the little flowers in two shades of pink to (I hope?) resemble cherry blossoms. I didn't do a particularly good job of aligning the two layers of the flowers, but that just makes it ART, right? ;) No sentiment, as I wanted it to have more of a notecard look... there is a birthday sentiment on the inside. 
With those little cherry blossoms, I'm also linking this up to the current Monday Simon Says Stamp challenge, April Showers Bring May Flowers. (And what do April SNOW showers bring? I think winter has finally given up, thank goodness. :D) 

Supplies: navy & Stampin' Up naturals white cardstock, Strathmore watercolour paper, Hero Arts Colour Layering Bird stamps, Memento angel pink, rose bud, lulu lavender, teal zeal, nautical blue, rich cocoa, tuxedo black & tumbled glass & broken china distress inks, MFT blueprints 24 stitched rectangle die

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