Thursday, July 30, 2020

Seize the Birthday: Tic Tac Toe!

It's time for a new Seize the Birthday challenge: Tic Tac Toe! Here is the grid: 

Of course, if none of these options appeal to you, we love to see any birthday card in our link-up. And I will admit, it took a while for me to find a trio I felt completely comfortable with. Just like our last challenge, I began a first card, got stuck, made an entirely different card, then went back determined to make something of my other start. :D 
My first completed card uses the lower left to upper right combination of large sentiment, flowers, and one image: 

With only one image, I wanted a big one, and this Uniko gerbera is one of my bigger flowers. I stamped the flower outline and the sentiment at the same time... and although it was a humid day, I took a chance and used black sparkle embossing powder. My clear sparkle powder is pretty, too, but I wanted to really emphasize the black, particularly in the sentiment. Then I used sponge daubers to colour the fill-in stamp in the two different inks. I added a bit of pencil shading, mostly to the stem and where the petals meet the  calyx. Finally I added a generous coat of clear sparkle marker to the petals. You can even see some of the sparkle in the close up photo! 

I'm adding this card to the current Uniko challenge: In My Garden. I think with the red I might even have the hot summer colours option. ;) 
For my first-that-turned-into-second card, I went upper left to lower right: birds, flowers, stencil.  

To start this card, I gathered a whole bunch of inks and sat on our deck making all kinds of layered birds, some of which even worked! :D (Interesting thing about layering stamps: when they're longer and thinner, as this bird is, and they get stored imperfectly for a period of time, they're even harder to line up than usual! So the final layer of the bird, for the head, wing and tail, gave me even more difficulty than usual.) After making my other card, I came back to this and stamped and die cut the branch and flowers from the same set. My stencil is blended with the same blue inks as I used on the bird. I'm going to enter this card in the current Anything Goes Wednesday Challenge at Simon Says Stamp

The StB design team and our current surprise party guest Jen have all played tic tac toe to great effect! Make a card and join the fun! 

Supplies: (gerbera) Neenah white cardstock, MFT Dots & Stripes Neutral patterned paper, Uniko Gerbera & Studio Katia It's Your Birthday stamps, Versafine onyx black, Catherine Pooler rockin' red & SU garden green ink, Ranger ultra fine black sparkle embossing powder, Prismacolor pencils, Spectrum Noir clear sparkle brush marker, fun foam; (bird) Neenah white & (?) blue cardstock, Hero Arts Color Layering Bird & Branch stamps & dies, Savvy Stamps Happy Birthday stamp, Altenew Caribbean sky, sapphire, blush & crimson, Simon Says Stamp intense black & Memento espresso truffle ink, Carabelle Studio Mosaīque stencil, Marvy-Uchide corner-rounding punch

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Saturday, July 25, 2020

The Sisterhood of Snarky Pups

Happy snarky Saturday! The Sisterhood of Snarky Stampers is back with a new challenge for you: D is for Dogs. I gathered several different dog stamps and images, and ended up with two different cards. Here's the first: 

This card is only snarky in the sense that it could easily be pandemic-related! I don't think many of us in March thought we'd still be like this at the end of July. I had stamped this cute little pup at my friend Emily's back in the old days, and thought it was time to make use of him. The "wish you were here" sentiment seemed to make perfect sense with his looking out the window. 

My second doggie is very different: 

Again, could be Covid-related - physical distancing! More Copic colouring, some fun patterned paper and an embossed sentiment made this card quick to put together. 

Some of my sisters even seem to prefer dogs to cats, :D so you will see lots of inspiration on the Sisterhood blog. We also have an awesome card from our current Queen of Snark and guest designer, Beverly! Hope you'll join us. 

Supplies: (wish you were here) Neenah white, Stampin' Up basic black & scraps of cream & grey cardstock, Basic Grey True Love patterned paper, Simon Hurley Create Punny Pups & Hero Arts Irreverent Birthday stamps, Versamark, Versafine onyx black, barn door distress & Stampin' Up bravo burgundy inks, Wow clear gloss & ultra fine white embossing powder, Copic markers, Stampers Anonymous/Tim Holtz Bricked stencil, Nellie's Multi Frames square dies; (just waving hi) Neenah white, Stampin' Up basic grey & (?) textured teal cardstock, Basic Grey Oliver patterned paper, Paper Smooches Boom Bots & Neat & Tangled Sailmates stamps, Versamark & Simon Says Stamp extreme black ink, Wow super fine white embossing powder, Copic markers, Spectrum Noir clear glitter brush marker, Icicle Stickles, foam tape

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Inkspirational: Photo

Welcome the newest challenge at Inkspirational, where do we ever have a photo challenge for you! Click on the badge above if you want to see this pic in all its glory. It may be a little bit... unusual, but there are certainly lots of different things in the photo from which to take inspiration.  For me, it was an easy choice to pick red and white for my colours. I also wanted to incorporate some polka dots, and see if I could capture a little of the surreality of the photo. Here's the result. 

I likely could have found polka-dot patterned paper somewhere in my stash, but it was almost as easy to just make my own. Red ink on white cardstock, then white ink plus white embossing powder on red cardstock. The funky tree and bug are my nod to the strangeness of the photo, and as much as anything, I made it into a get well card because the sentiment fit nicely into a circle. I'm pleased to say this is the first get well card I've made this year, and it will be added to my stash. No need for it at the moment, touch wood. ;) 

You will enjoy seeing all the different directions the Inkspirational team went in interpreting this new challenge! Hope you will see something in this photo to inspire you, too. 

Supplies: Neenah white & Stampin' Up real red cardstock, Unity/Ippity A Little Buggy & Clearly Besotted Message Me stamps, Stampin' Up real red & Colorbox frost white ink, Wow white embossing powder, Heidi Swapp Polka Dot stencil, Spellbinders circle die, rock candy distress Stickles, Echo Park enamel dots

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Thursday, July 16, 2020

Seize the Birthday: Don't Be Neutral!

Happy pandemic Thursday! Can't avoid all the changes it's brought, so might as well make the best of it... and here we are at Seize the Birthday with a new challenge to inspire you! Our newest challenge is to use a non-neutral card base. But if your coloured cardstock supplies are running low, we are always happy to accept any birthday card in our gallery.
When I started making my card, I picked my card base, made a background... and then got stuck. I quickly realized my usual way is to design my card first, then if it works, pick a coordinating card base. So I picked a stamp set to use, and came up with this:

I made a card with a dog on it last week :D, so decided to work with this cute Lawn Fawn cat set. I stamped, embossed, and coloured a number of the images in the set, then played around until I got this mini-scene. On the white panel, I blended just a bit of grey ink to ground the images. I don't often reach for teal, but with the can-cake I coloured, this seemed to work perfectly. 

With one of the leftover images (and a second can), I made another card: 

This time I went with a blue can so I could use a blue card base. 

And then OF COURSE I had to go back to my original attempt and see if I could come up with something...

I cut my stencilled background into a fishtail banner, coloured up another cat, and split the sentiment into two smaller parts. I hadn't wanted to use any bling on the first two cards (apart for a little Glossy Accents on the candle flames and a bit of sparkle on the fish), but this time I added Stickles to the kitty collar and a few star sequins to the banner. 

Of course if cats aren't your thing, we have a wide variety of cards on the Seize the Birthday blog to inspire you, from the usual party-goers and our surprise party guest, Jen! Make a birthday card and join the fun! 

Supplies: (purrthday) Neenah white & Stampin' Up (?) teal textured cardstock, Lawn Fawn Meow You Doin' stamps and dies, Versafine onyx black & hickory smoke distress ink, Wow clear gloss embossing powder, Copic markers, Glossy Accents, Spectrum Noir clear sparkle marker, foam tape; (pawsome day) Neenah white & Hero Arts blue layering cardstock, Lawn Fawn Meow You Doin' stamps and dies, Versafine onyx black & Memento Luxe Danube blue ink, Wow clear gloss embossing powder, Copic markers, MFT stitched rounded rectangle die, Glossy Accents, Spectrum Noir clear sparkle marker, foam tape; (cool cat) Neenah white & Hero Arts mauve layering cardstock, MFT Cat-itude & Love You Furever stamps & dies, Versafine onyx black & seedless preserves distress inks, Wow clear gloss embossing powder, Copic markers, Prismacolor pencils, Ranger/Dylusions It's Raining Cats stencil, Sunny Studio Stamps Fishtail Banners 2 die, icicle Stickles, foam tape

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Tuesday, July 14, 2020

More Christmas in July

As I'd hoped, I did manage to make another Christmas card on the weekend... it just took me until today to get it photographed. ;) Amazingly, most of the challenges I'd hoped to enter are still open! Here's my card:

I love this big poinsettia image from Altenew, and I think it looks amazing embossed with gold tinsel embossing powder. I used watercolour powder to colour it, giving it effortless variations in red hues. It's not even that much of a chore to fussy cut it. For the white panel, I embossed the sentiment and splattered some gold glitter paint. I'm not totally pleased with the gold Nuvo drops I added to the centre of the poinsettia, but it didn't totally wreck the flower, either, so I'll live with it. 

I made this with two challenges in mind: The Flower Challenge is looking for summer or winter flowers; and Shopping Our Stash is featuring Christmas/Hanukkah in July.

Supplies: Neenah white & American Crafts textured white cardstock, Canson watercolour paper, Altenew Modern poinsettia stamps, Versamark & Altenew velvet inks, Wow clear & gold glitter embossing powder, Magenta Nuance red watercolour powder, Tattered Angels golden goddess glitter paint, Nuvo bright gold glitter drops, Creative Memories corner-rounding punch

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Saturday, July 11, 2020

The Sisterhood of Snarky Stampers: Zebra

It's time for the new challenge at the Sisterhood of Snarky Stampers: Z is for Zebra! I suppose we could get snarky over whether this last letter of the alphabet is pronounced "zed" or "zee", but occasionally we can just agree to disagree. :D 
Zero zebra stamps here - in fact, I'm pretty sure I only have ONE horse stamp (that I'm not overly fond of), and I don't even have unicorn stamps. However, I do have a woodgrain background stamp that I won eons ago. From my first look at it, I thought it looked more like a zebra skin than a wood print. So at last, a chance to use it! 

I also called on the current design at Freshly Made Sketches to assist me in my cardmaking. To keep it snarky, I stamped and coloured this bemused crazy dog with a sentiment from Hero Arts. 

Since I've had this background stamp forever, I'm also linking this card at the current NBUS (never before used schtuff) challenge. 
On the Snarky blog, you'll find zebras both literal and figurative, by the Sistahs as well as our current Queen of Snark and guest designer, Sharon! Be wild and join us! 

Supplies: Neenah white & Stampin' Up black cardstock, Stampers Anonymous Tim Holtz Mini Crazy Dogs and Cats & Sweet Stamp Shop Against the Grain stamps, Versafine onyx black & Simon Says Stamp extreme black ink, Wow clear gloss embossing powder, Copic markers, Spectrum Noir clear glitter marker, foam tape

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Inkspirational: Painting or Colouring

Inkspirational is here to kick off your weekend with a new challenge: Painting or Colouring! Perfect timing, too, if you are playing along in Kathy Racoosin's July colouring challenge. It's been a very warm few days here in my part of the world, so that's likely why I decided to go with a sweet and summery card: 

The ice cream cone blueprint stamp is from a Simon Says Stamp Stamptember collaboration a few years ago. I like the in-between size and the added sentiments, which are easily masked off if you have another idea in mind. This is stamped on watercolour paper and coloured with Zigs. For the frosty ice cream, I added iridescent medium over the watercolouring. I rarely go this pink with a card, but strawberry just seemed right for today. :D A panel of glitter paper, a patterned paper card base and a few pink gems finished the card. 

Besides joining in with Kathy's colouring challenge, I am also adding the card to the Monday Simon Says Stamp challenge, Play with Paint; the current Days Gone By theme at Time Out Challenges (childhood memories eating ice cream cones with my dad); and the July Day of the Month Card Club, which is celebrating National Ice Cream Day. 
Be sure to check out the design teams' beautiful projects on the Inkspirational blog, then grab your favourite colouring medium and join us! 

Supplies: Neenah white cardstock, Canson watercolour paper, Colorbök pink glitter paper, Dear Lizzy Lucky You patterned paper, Simon Says Stamp/Tim Holtz Stamptember blueprint stamp, Simon Says Stamp extreme black ink, Zig watercolour markers, Newton & Winsor iridescent medium, Studio Katia pink tourmaline gems

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Friday, July 10, 2020

Christmas in July

All over the cardmaking universe, it seems to be Christmas in July! And what better time to make Christmas cards than in the middle of a heatwave? So I gathered some supplies and a few challenges, and got to work. 
Both my cards are inspired by my friend Jo's Christmas Kickstart Challenge, where the current theme is Hatty Christmas. For my first card, I was also inspired by the current challenge at CAS(E) This Sketch

Although I turned the sketch and took a few other liberties, I think the inspiration is still clear. I love this pair of bears from Picket Fence Studios! Their little in-turned feet are so cute. The only drawback for me with this stamp is the bear cub's hat and scarf are solid, so if it's stamped in black, he's wearing a black Santa hat with a black scarf. This is where making Christmas cards in July is helpful: there's time to decide on a workaround. ;) For this card, I stamped the top half of the cub again in red so I could cut out the hat and scarf and paper piece them. I also added some sparkle, because why not? For the background, I cut masks with a curved die and blended the path with mauves and blue. Then I masked the path and stencilled some sparkly snowflakes on the banks. I used one of the mauve inks to sponge the background colour for the sentiment as well as the border of the card base itself. 

My second card features a hatted snowman instead of a bear: 

This snowman is from the same stamp set as the bears, and I like him too! For the background, I masked off the bottom of the watercolour cardstock panel with some torn masking tape then used Twinkling H2Os and the plastic wrap technique for a sparkly sky. While it dried, I painted my snowman with Gansai Tambi watercolours. Once the sky background was dry, I added some white watercolour and iridescent medium so the snow would sparkle, too. The same sentiment as above seemed to work with this card, too.  

I'm also adding these cards to the Christmas in July challenge at Shopping Our Stash (while the bears and snowman are only a year old, the sentiment is ancient) and Fezziwig's Festive Frolics where anything festive goes. (Any challenge with a Dickens reference is a winner for me!) 
I'm hoping to build up my Christmas card stash even more this weekend! Time will tell... ;) 

Supplies: (bears) Neenah white & Stampin' Up basic black cardstock, Picket Fence Studios A Christmas Walk & Hero Arts Snow Much Joy stamps, Versafine onyx black & shaded lilac, milled lavender & tumbled glass distress inks, Wow clear gloss & clear sparkle embossing powder, Copic markers, Memory Box Winter Tiny Snowflakes stencil, iridescent glitz glitter gel, Sugar Pea Designs card front element builder die, Spectrum Noir clear glitter marker; (snowman) Canson watercolour paper, Ranger/Tim Holtz distress watercolour cardstock, Picket Fence Studios A Christmas Walk & Hero Arts Snow Much Joy stamps, Versafine onyx black ink, Wow clear gloss & clear sparkle embossing powder, Gansai Tambi watercolours, Twinkling H2Os, Winsor & Newton iridescent medium, foam tape

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Monday, July 6, 2020

Double Challenge Card

Happy Monday! It's a hot one here where I am, so a few minutes sitting in the air conditioning blogging a card doesn't seem too bad an idea. ;) I needed an anniversary card, and managed to slip a couple of challenges into the making of it. And managed to make my first slimline card for a long time, too! 

I had already decided I wanted to stencil some hearts on my card - and then saw the Just Us Girls Challenge was looking for rainbows, so why not! And my stencilled hearts looked even better after I traced around them with a Sharpie pen, as this month's CAS Mix Up suggested we try. I was also reminded of my historic youth, when we actually used cardboard letter stencils to trace titles for school projects... I had trouble tracing perfectly then, I have trouble tracing perfectly now. :D After I traced, I continued to leave the stencil on and gave the hearts a generous spray with sparkle mist. I cut a little piece out of the stencilled panel - I didn't want the two cut layers to still match exactly, but I also needed as much length as possible. The sentiment is heat embossed with sparkle embossing powder. Finally, some gems and sequins, possibly with one covering a pen slip. :D 

And now the outdoors is calling to me again. Have a great day! 

Edited to add: I realize I left out an applicable challenge! (And don't want to change my post title...) I'm also adding this to the current CAS(E) This Sketch challenge - I took a number of liberties with the sketch, but hope it's still acceptable. 

Supplies: Neenah white cardstock, The Ink Road Modern Romance stamp, Versafine onyx black & picked raspberry, barn door, carved pumpkin, squeezed lemonade, twisted citron, blueprint sketch, shaded lilac & wilted violet distress ink, Hero Arts sparkle embossing powder, Sharpie pen, Tsukineko clear sparkle shimmer mist, Studio Katia iridescent hearts, Pretty Pink Posh sparkling clear sequins

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