Saturday, January 27, 2018

Down on the Farm

Edna and the sisters are spending a little time in the country with F is for Farm Life! And darn, now I've got the opening theme from Green Acres stuck in my head. Yep, I'm old. :D (Also, you're welcome; I could have embedded the video, so you would have an ear worm too. But I just linked to it, instead.) 
My brother has a farm — a hobby farm, where the animals are more pets than farm animals. Along with horses and donkeys and sheep and (∞)... there are a number of goats. (I think nine at last count.) So that was my inspiration for this week's card:

My snarky sister Chris noted how grungy and technique-y this is for me, and she's right — it's the Tim Holtz effect, I'd say. Especially the Hipster stamps... they just seem to call out for  layers and *stuff*. To start my card, I stamped my goat then masked a circle  as well as adding two tiny goat ear masks. Then I stamped a text background and added a little stencilling. Mr. Goat is watercoloured with Zig markers. The sentiment is embossed in white on purple to go with his hipster tie and spectacles. I added a couple of off-true paper layers and called it done. And since this is quite a layered card for me, both with papers and ink, I'm linking it up to the current Wednesday Simon Says Stamp challenge, Layer It Up
We have quite a menagerie of farm animals on the blog today! Visit to see what my sisters and our newest Queen of Snark, Lisa, have cultivated! You have until February 9th to join us. 

Supplies: black, purple & Hero Arts latte layering cardstock, Canson watercolour paper, Crate Paper Maggie Holmes Signature patterned paper, chipboard, Stampers Anonymous/Tim Holtz Hipster & Hero Arts Newsprint Background stamps,Versmark, MFT black licorice, Memento grey flannel & broken china distress inks, Hero Arts white embossing powder, Zig markers, Stampers Anonymous/Tim Holtz burlap stencil 

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Thursday, January 18, 2018

One Layer at Seize the Birthday

It's Thursday, and that means time for a new challenge at Seize the Birthday

Our "topping" for the new challenge (which is always optional, by the way) is ONE LAYER. Oh yay. ;) While a lot of my cards definitely fall into the clean and simple category, I'm not overly comfortable making one layer cards for some reason. But here it is:

I started with a coloured card base, thinking it would add a little more interest than the usual white. I stamped my large rose and embossed it in white, then added some highlights with a white watercolour pencil, and in the centre with a white gel pen. The sentiment is also embossed in white. 
You really should go see my teammates' cards — so many different ways to approach a one layer card style! I hope you'll join us! 

Supplies: Stampin' Up poppy red cardstock, Stampin' Up Fifth Avenue Florals & Clearly Besotted Fancy Sayings stamps, Versamark ink, Hero Arts white embossing powder, Gelli roll white glaze pen, watercolour pencil

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Monday, January 15, 2018

More Celebrating!

Let us pause for a moment in the face of being halfway through January... already! Time flies when you lose a week of it to a stomach bug and then a bad headache. πŸ˜” Anyway, the first two weeks of January have disappeared, and I'm here to remind you about January's Naughty or Nice challenge! 

If you are celebrating something through crafting, then it qualifies for our challenge. I went ridiculously nice for the beginning of the month, so I felt I should try to redeem myself today: 

As always, there was a crazy animal with an expression suited to the sentiment. My pooch is coloured with markers, the congrats is an inlaid die cut, and the rest of the sentiment stamped and embossed. Easy and fun! 
It's easy and fun to join us, too! You have until January 25th to link up your celebratory creation. 

Supplies: white & teal DCWV silky smooth cardstock, Stampers Anonymous/Tim Holtz Mini Crazy Dogs & Cats stamp & die, Technique Tuesday Sassy Birthday stamp, Versafine onyx black ink, Ranger clear embossing powder, Spectrum Noir markers, Little B blockout die, foam tape

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Sunday, January 14, 2018

Muse... But Not Christmas

I hope that being on the Muse: ChristmasVisions design team doesn't bar me from playing in the other Muse challenge! Anita Bowden has a beautiful inspiration card, and there's a prize this week, too! Here's Anita's card: 

When I first saw this, I was reminded of pretty patterned paper with gorgeous florals in the corners and beautiful colours. So I decided I wanted to CASE Anita's card using patterned paper. Here's my version:

Along with the corner florals, I was also inspired by the rich colours and embossed central sentiment. I was surprised at how much of my patterned paper I had to look through to find one that would work! Then there was all the fussy-cutting. I tried some solid colours for the background panel, but ultimately liked this coordinating patterned paper best. I could have made the central panel the full size of the card, but like the way the pale yellow card base pulled the colour of the floral and blue backgrounds out. The embossing is done in moonstone powder, which is somewhere between gold and silver, and one of my favourite metallics. The sentiment combines two Simon Says Stamp sets... and their current Wednesday challenge is to use patterned paper, so I am linking up there as well. 

Supplies: American Crafts textured pale yellow cardstock, gold pearl paper, Prima Introspection patterned paper, Simon Says Stamp Essential Greetings & Happy stamps, Versamark ink, Stampendous moonstone embossing powder

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Saturday, January 13, 2018

Trying a New Technique

Happy New Year to all the snarkers out there! The Sisterhood of Snarky Stampers is back with our first challenge of 2018, T is for Technique. There are SO many stamping/inking/colouring techniques out there, how to narrow the choice? Luckily for me, the CAS Mix Up Card Challenge this month gave me the perfect one: cling wrap. There are a number of different ways to do this, and I used this version from the different links offered on the CAS Mix Up post. I thought it would be fun to see what happened if I used Twinkling H2Os as my watercolour base, and the results are fun! The plastic wrap (as I usually call it) seems to help concentrate the shimmer in areas. I used three colours and here's what I got: 

Isn't it fun? I can see this technique becoming a regular habit. I trimmed it to size and turned it into a card: 

To keep my crazy cat from disappearing, I left him mostly white and just added some shading. The bright yellow balloon doesn't fade into the background, either. πŸ˜‰ 
I highly recommend checking out what my sisters in snark have come up with for this challenge, not to mention that of our current Queen of Snark, Toni! Join us — you have until January 26th to play along! 

Supplies: white & black cardstock, Canson watercolour paper, Stampers Anonymous/Tim Holtz Crazy Cats & Crazy Things stamps & dies, Technique Tuesday Sassy Birthday stamp, Versafine onyx black ink, Twinkling H2Os, Copic & Spectrum Noir markers, yellow Divine Twine, foam tape

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Friday, January 12, 2018

Muse Christmas Inspiration

It's not my turn yet to be a *muse* at Muse: ChristmasVisions, but I'm excited enough about my newest design team that I'm playing along! Here is the inspiration card from the current muse, Kimberly Wiener:  

So cute! Somehow I don't think my small town will ever end up as part of a sentiment, so I couldn't really be inspired by that, apart from size. Instead I looked at Kimberly's overall card design, her colourful main image, and use of a coloured card base. Here's what I ended up with: 

I have a giant collection of Unity Christmas stamps, and not nearly enough of them saw ink for this past Christmas, so I pulled this one out for my main image. He's stamped in black and embossed, then coloured in with markers. Like Kimberly, I matted my main panel on black, then (in my case) a green card base. The size of my snow guy meant I couldn't show as much of it! 
Look at that! First Christmas card of 2018 is done! If you come and play along, you can get a head start on your Christmas card stash, too. 

Supplies: white & black cardstock, Craft Smith green card base, Unity Gifts Galore (Snowpeep Nicholas) & Paper Smooches All Yule Need stamps, Versafine onyx black ink, Ranger clear embossing powder, Copic & Spectrum Noir markers, MFT diagonal stitched rectangle die, Tsukineko frost white all purpose ink, clear glitter Gelli Roll pen, Nuvo white blizzard glitter drops

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Thursday, January 11, 2018

Mixing It Up with a Valentine

There's a new(ish) Mix It Up Challenge at Ellen Hutson right now! This month they are looking for participants to combine Essentials by Ellen stamps with Concord & 9th. I looked through my sets and came up with this: 

Initially, I thought I might combine this All Inside bear with a birch tree background using Tree Hugs from Concord & 9th. Once I started playing around, I decided that a clean and simple card with a C&9th sentiment would look better. The bear is stamped in grey ink, embossed and coloured with Spectrum Noir markers. The sentiment is embossed in white on a deep red panel. Since I hadn't used any black, I matted the panel on white and then on a grey card base. 
With my bear hugging his hearts, I'm entering this in the current CASology challenge, where the cue word is HUG. 

Supplies: white cardstock & Bazzill red patterned cardstock, Memory Box grey card base, Essentials by Ellen All Inside stamps & dies, Concord & 9th Tree Hugs & Perfectly Penned stamps, Versamark & Memento Luxe grey flannel & Love Letter inks, Ranger clear & Hero Arts white & sparkle embossing powders, Spectrum Noir markers, foam tape

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Wednesday, January 10, 2018

Muse: ChristmasVisions

Yep, I'm adding another design team to my cardmaking resumΓ©! I am joining the talented group at Muse: ChristmasVisions. If you're not already familiar with this "Christmas Card Club", the concept is a simple one. Every two weeks, a Christmas or winter themed card is offered by one of the designers as an inspiration for you to make a project of your own. We also ask you, if you enter, to pick three other people's entries to add a positive comment to — because who doesn't appreciate supportive feedback? At the end of the two weeks, you are invited back to the blog to vote for your favourite three entries! What a great way to get ahead on a stash of festive cards before the crazy season begins. (Last year, I took a sabbatical from year-round Christmas card making. In December, that sabbatical seemed like a crazy idea. πŸ˜‚)
It's not yet my turn to be your Christmas card *muse*, but I do hope to pop back soon with my own take on today's inspiration by fellow designer, Kimberly Wiener. In the meantime, I hope you'll check out Muse: ChristmasVisions and be inspired, too! 

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Thursday, January 4, 2018

I'm Seizing the Birthday!!!

See what that badge up above says at the top? Yes, I am joining the Seize the Birthday design team! If you're not familiar, Seize the Birthday is a challenge focused specifically on birthdays — because it's always a good idea to have an extra birthday card or two at the ready. The challenge "toppings" are always optional, so if it's birthday-related, it fits. 
The challenge starting today is completely ANYTHING GOES — make a birthday card and come play along! 

For my card today, I've gone just a little bit snarky... the Seize the Birthday team should know right away who they've added to the team, I figure. ;) 

I love how versatile Tim Holtz's crazy dogs, cats and birds can be, and thought this guy's expression went perfectly with that sentiment! The patterned paper seemed to have the appropriate celebratory vibe for a birthday. The pup is watercoloured and of course had some glossy accents added to his eyes and nose, as well as a little sparkle to his collar. 
I hope you'll play along and join us! 

Supplies: white & yellow cardstock, Lily Bee Design Pinwheel patterned paper, Stampers Anonymous/Tim Holtz Mini Crazy Cats & Dogs stamp & die, Hero Arts Irreverent Birthday Messages stamp, Versafine onyx black & MFT black licorice inks, Ranger clear embossing powder, distress markers, MFT wonky stitched rectangles die, Glossy Accents, Wink of Stella clear glitter marker, foam tape

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Monday, January 1, 2018

It's a Celebration! πŸŽ‰

HAPPY NEW YEAR! 2017 had its up and downs, didn't it? So let's celebrate the arrival of 2018 and all the potential that a new calendar year offers. To kick off 2018, Naughty or Nice Challenges is looking for any kind of celebratory creation! Perhaps it's the new year, a special birthday or anniversary, or anything worth celebrating. 
It must be the afterglow of Christmas or something, but there's nothing in the least naughty about my card today...

A card to welcome a new baby is perhaps about as nice as one can get. To jump-start my creativity after a bit of a break over Christmas, I looked to Freshly Made Sketches #318 as a starting point for my design. This little bunny and that sentiment are my absolute favourites to use those rare times when I make a baby card. To keep the background subtle, I used a stippling brush to lightly apply ink through my stencil. And those soft pastel colours? Let's hope this is just a momentary lapse in my usual habits. :D 
Simon Says Stamp has an Anything Goes Wednesday challenge right now, so I'll link this little guy there as well. 

But wait, there's more! To start the year off, we're offering a prize! Our naughty and nice favourites will each receive a set of mitten dies. Be sure to check the challenge blog for all the details, and to see what the Troublemakers are up to in their celebrations. You have until January 25th to come and play along! 

Supplies: white cardstock, Strathmore mixed media paper, My Mind's Eye Lost & Found Rosy & Echo Park Everyday Eclectic patterned paper, My Favourite Things Somebunny I Love & Unity sentiment stamps, Versafine onyx black, MFT black licorice & bundled sage & ground espresso distress inks, Ranger clear embossing powder, 
distress markers, ARTplorations hearts all over stencil, foam tape

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