Archive for the "General" Category

2017-Aug-08e

I always look forward to the Dare to Get Dirty Challenges at SplitcoastStampers, even though I started late this year (and skipped the past two years due to some unavoidable circumstances). The “Dirty Girls” somehow always wake up my mojo, and the projects above are proof of that. These are treat holders and the basic template used in making these adorable monsters is one that Gem’s Cottage released 8 years ago – Gobblers, and its designed siblings, the Halloween Gobblers.

The project is still as easy to assemble (and still as fun!) as I remembered – I printed the template on colored cardstock, cut it out, scored on the dash lines, and put it together with my trusty ol’ ATG (which I did not have 8 years ago). Next, I just went crazy with the spots, LOL – cut out different circle sizes on the Silhouette (which I also did not have 8 years ago), fashioned eyes out of large white circles (about 1.75 in) and black circles (about .75 in). To make the irises “sparkle”, I swabbed the black circles with ColorBox Frost White Pigment ink, then used white acrylic paint to make a few dots. The rest of the circles were used to decorate the monsters, then added teeth to make them look more scary (they turned out looking funnier, actually, LOL).

Thank you to  Sandee and Vicki for their inspiring challenges! (I will update this post to include the details of the challenges onces DTGD week is over.) Thank you for coming over to take a peek on what I’ve been up to!

2017-Aug-06a

It’s still August, so, of course, it’s hot! I’ve been grumpy and irritable for the past week, and last night I had a talk with myself:  Gem, enough already! Work on something that would get you out of this mood! Do something that would make you smile!

Well, I took the advice and went to check on SplitcoastStampers, which is currently running its Dare to Get Dirty Challenges. Then I took out one of my most favorite designer papers, Wonderful Winter Glittered Christmas Papers by My Mind’s Eye. Sigh. Just looking at the smiling snowmen and glittery colors is making me more cheerful already…I’ve used up most of the papers, but I’ve saved all scraps (that’s when I know I really like the papers, LOL, but then, I also have papers that I couldn’t even bear to cut because I just like them so much!). Using bits and pieces, and by using the patchwork template from my post 8 years ago (wow, has it been that long already?), I put together these two cards – and yes, making these definitely lifted me out of my depressed mood. Mission accomplished!

To use the patchwork template, just print it out, cut out the pieces and use them as patterns – easy, right?

These two cards are for Dina Kowal’s and Tricia’s (T. Joy) challenges. I will update this blog post to give you the details of each challenge when the Dare to Get Dirty Challenges are done! Thank you for coming over to take a peek!

2017-May-21a

There are rare moments when the creative ‘lightning’ just strikes me, and the card that’s in my head turns out exactly like the one I made – this is one of those moments, and yeah, I am celebrating by doing the happy dance!!! This card is for Nance’s Clean and Simple Butterfly Challenge over at The Paper Players. Looking at the fabulous cards of the Design Team really inspired me, and it was a pleasure coming up with this card. This is also for the CAS “Memories” Challenge by KelliJo at SplitcoastStampers: my Mom taught Science in the elementary grades, and her classroom was filled with butterfly and moth specimens of all sorts. She was a great teacher and inspired her students to really be curious about their environment. The butterflies and moths were not collected by my Mom, they were actually brought in by her students – eager to show her and the class what they discovered in their garden, or in their nature walks.

The butterfly/moth was cut from vellum using my Silhouette – the same cut file was enlarge twice, then the cut pieces were stacked together, with the smallest at the top layer (it is about 1  3/8″ wide, the next is 1  5/8″, and the largest is 1  7/8″ wide). Black rhinestones were put in the middle for the insect’s body. Here is a close-up of the butterfly/moth:

2017-May-21b

The watercolored background was done by making stripes using a wide brush, one color at a time, with the rainbow colors. After drying, several drops of water were put where the red stripe started and allowed to drip all the way down. I really like this drippy effect! Finally the sentiment was printed and adhered to the bottom of the card.

Thank you for coming over to take a look!

2017-May-18a

 

I’m taking a break from the embroidery floss flowers…nope, not tired of them yet,  just needed to play with the Paper Players but didn’t have a good substitute for Claire’s Color Challenge. So, I dipped into my stash of designer papers, and really, that’s like going down a rabbit hole! I spent more time trying to choose which wonderful paper I’d use than making the card itself, because, you know, there are papers that I just like to look at and can’t bear the thought of cutting them (anybody relate?). It’s like my stash of fabrics also…but then, I digress.

Claire chose bright, happy colors: Tempting  Turquoise, Real Red, Tangerine Tango and Pear Pizzazz, and although it reminds me of blue skies and flowers (or blue seas, a sunset, with red crabs tangled on seaweeds, LOL), I opted to focus on just the sentiment this time, and cut letters from the designer papers using a Silhouette. I also cut a white “shadow” using the offset function. Next, I cut strips of the papers, and adhered them side by side until the entire card front was covered (yes, these are strips, so I didn’t use that much paper – except for the orange polka dot one, which I had plenty of).  The word “Happy” was repeated four times (that means really happy, yes?)  and printed on vellum.

Now, I like the effect of vellum, but I really am always stumped when it comes to attaching vellum to the card. I’m so glad that Sabrina challenged us to use Hardware and Metal accents today over at SplitCoastStampers, which made me dig out my stash of brads and eyelets. Woohoo! I actually have some eyelets with the challenge colors, yesss! Okay, so vellum is attached, and one last thing: I also dug out a scallop border punch to add a little bit more “frill” to the card. This birthday card now looks more feminine…but, I also made a masculine version:

2017-May-18b

The  designer papers I used are: Bazzill Basics “Navajo” & “Ruby Slipper”, Colorbok (plain green), Jillybean Soup (orange salt, stewed tomatoes, garlic flakes – and this is making me crave spaghetti, lol), American Girl (Green with stars). Thank you for coming over to visit!

Comforting Thoughts composite

Last Saturday, Audrie, over at SplitcoastStampers, urged us to do something different for the Inspiration Challenge: make your own mini book. This challenge was perfect for me, as I was trying to think of a project which would put together comforting thoughts from the Scriptures, something that I needed since I am going through a pretty rough “storm” right now.

It’s not going to be something that can be easily done in an hour or two, well, not even a day! It was a project that would need the services of my trusty ol’ Scor-Pal and the use of my favorite spring colors  (that’s why I’m linking this project to Scor-Pal’s Favorite Color Combination Challenge). I would need to make plenty of flowers – which are all over our backyard right now and answers Robin’s question for Friday’s Free for All Challenge. It would also need a humongous amount of paper piercing…but, it was going to be fun and oh, so worth it!

I started making the pages first: I cut white Georgia Pacific cardstock into 8″ x 3.5″ strips, scored the middle and folded them to make 4″ x 3.5″ pages.  If you think that the design and layout look familiar, it’s because it is exactly the same as my Special Day Tag Card. I used the same paper piercing pattern but I printed all the Bible verses on a different sheet (using BrodyD font), then punched into 2-inch circles. The circles were then glued onto the paper-pierced frames. There are 12 pages in all – and to attach them all together, I made “hinges” by scoring a 12″ x 3.5″ strip at every half-inch mark. Check out this picture from Pinterest that inspired me how to do it. For the book covers, I used Bazzill Basics papers to cover two chipboards that were cut 4 1/4″ x 3 3/4″ (a quarter inch larger than the pages, in both length and width).

Other notes: I plan to make other mini books like this since it was fun, but I will not use white glue or transparent glue gel to stick the circles in – it made the card stock warp! I will either use the ATG or rubber cement.

Here are pictures of the entire book – and I hope, that you, the reader, will be comforted if you need it, too!

Comforting Thoughts Cover

Comforting Thoughts 1

 

Comforting Thoughts 2-3

Comforting Thoughts 4-5

Comforting Thoughts 6-7

Comforting Thoughts 8-9

Comforting Thoughts 10-11

Comforting Thoughts 12

Thank you for coming over to take a look!

2017-May-08a

I still need a few Mother’s Day cards to make and needed some kick-in-the-you-know-what to get me going today, so I was totally delighted when Tricia over at SplitcoastStampers asked for some May flowers in the CAS Challenge. Yay! This card is also for Simon Says Stamp Wednesday Challenge: A Hint of Pink (although, there’s more than just a hint of pink here, LOL!).

I had already made these daisies sometime ago from DMC floss #743 (for the yellow centers),  #703 (for the green calyx of the buds) and “blanc” (white). The flowers were made just like pompoms using a 26-gauge green floral wire to tie the floss together and also serve as the stem. For the buds, I started the same way, winding white floss on a piece of 3/8″ cardboard. After tying together the floss at the base with wire, I slipped another wire at the top and twisted the wire tightly to keep the floss from spreading outward (the wire is hidden at the back of the bud). I then got a piece of the green floss, moistened it with white glue, and wound it around the base of the “bud”, then let it dry. Here is a close-up of the flowers:

2017-May-08b

The rest of the card came quickly together after the flowers: the sentiment was printed on a strip of white cardstock using CaslonNo450SwaD font, the cardbase was cut from Bazzill Ballet embossed polka dot, the leaf came from Recollections (which I trimmed quite a bit because it was quite large). I hot-glued the daisy bouquet over the sentiment, and called it done!

Thank you for coming over to take a look!

 

2017-May-06b

I made a clean and simple (to me, LOL) tag card today for a few challenges at SplitcoastStampers: Maura’s Color Challenge to use Melon Mambo, Daffodil Delight, Pool Party and Cucumber Crush (the colors scream of spring!!!), Toni’s “May the Fourth Be with You” Challenge (although I have “your” in my sentiment – I hope that’s fine) and Jeanne’s It’s CAS To Me Challenge (I normally have a 2nd or 3rd layer on my card for the sentiment, but for this one, it’s just the card base – one layer, yeah!). This is also for Simon Says Stamp Wednesday Challenge – A Hint of Pink!

I decided on the sentiment first on this tag card – it should be something that can be used for a birthday, a graduation, Mother’s Day, Retirement Day – because I always seem to be needing tags for occasions like these. “It’s your Special Day” fit the bill for all of these – and printed several on Georgia Pacific 110 lb white card stock using Frenchscript font. These were then cut to 7″ x 3.5″, and folded in half.

The paper piercing pattern came from Gem’s Cottage Paper Piercing Floral Set. I printed  it first, cut it to size, then by holding it against the light, positioned the pattern on the reverse side of the sentiment.  ( I normally do my paper piercing on the reverse side because I want the nubby holes to be on the front side – I like the texture showing that way.)

The flowers were made with DMC embroidery floss – #4020 (variegated blue), probably #335 – this came from my scraps (pink), #973 (yellow) and #703 (green). These were made like pompoms, only that I did not trim them, and used a 26-gauge green floral wire to tie the floss together and  become the stem. A Martha Stewart leaf punch was used for the green leaves behind the flowers using a green Colorbok cardstock. Here is a close-up:

2017-May-06c

I made several of these tag cards, so that when that “Special Day” for someone comes, I’m ready – yeah!

Thanks for coming to see what I’ve been up to!

2017-May-02b

 

I’m taking a break from my floral cards to post this masculine birthday card – because the wonderful teacher of my son is having his birthday today! He is the kind of teacher who inspires his students to learn, and to be excited about learning,  the kind of teacher who cares about his students, is patient and understanding… well, needless to say, my son thought that we (which means I) should come up with an awesome card to show how much his teacher is appreciated.

We went for a Star Wars theme since his teacher is a fan – I chose Yoda because of the way he speaks (my son remarks, “I wonder if Language Arts teachers go crazy when they hear him.” LOL). This card is a shameless CASE of Carlene’s card. Thank you, Carlene, for the layout and elements on your card which were just perfect! Since I do not have a Yoda stamp, I paper-pieced him instead (I made my own templates), and used googly eyes. Green paper is from Colorbok, tan paper is Bazzill, and the coffee brown tunic is Recollections. The edges  were sponged with distress inks (peeled paint, tea dye). The “belt” is twine that I dyed with the distress ink. A close-up of Yoda:

2017-May-02

 

For the “starry” background, I used a black cardstock spattered with white acryclic paint. I made some spots big, so that they look like faraway planets or moons. The “moon” was cut on the Silhouette using light yellow cardstock (Colorbok), matted on another mustard yellow circle, and the edges were sponged with tea dye distress ink. The “sand dune” was also cut on the Silhouette using a scrap of Bazzill cardstock. The sentiment was printed using Freshbot font, and matted using the leftovers from the “starry” background.

This card is actually 8.5″ x 10.5″ – yup, it’s big, because my son’s entire class will be signing it! Inside, the sentiment goes, “Yoda best, Mr. Rossen! Happy Birthday we wish you!” (Yes, some kids groaned about the pun, LOL!)

Did I mention that this card is also for The Paper Players‘ challenge this week? No? Well then, I just did, right? (Sorry, conversing with 12-year olds makes me like this.) This is for the fun Tic-Tac-Toe Challenge by Jaydee – I did the top row:  Circle, Green and Twine. This is also for Simon Says Stamp Anything Goes Wednesday Challenge.

Thank you for coming by to take a look!

2017-Apr-29a

This is my first time watercoloring a digi stamp by Marcella Hawley at Power Poppy, and only my second time making a swing card (see my first one here). I’m just wondering what took me so long to buy Marcella’s stamps, her florals (which I have a weakness for) are done artistically (reminds me of Marjolein Bastin’s style), they are such a pleasure to work with! This card is for three challenges – for SplitcoastStampers’ Healing Words Inspiration Challenge by Audrie, Power Poppy’s Grab That Spark Pick-a-Sketch Challenge and Simon Says Anything Goes Wednesday Challenge.

The first thing I did was to print the digi on watercolor paper, but changed the black lines to sepia tones (there are some details that became hard to see later, specially with the butterfly, but, oh well…I was trying for a Marjolein Bastin look, LOL!). Anyway, I used watercolor gel crayons, and for the most part, they worked okay – just had trouble with that butterfly (sigh). Here’s a close-up of the colored piece:

2017-Apr-29b

Next, I decided to use Sketch #3 at Power Poppy’s Challenge, but I kind of wanted to do something different, so I made it into a swing card – the sketch lends itself beautifully to a swing card, right? So, I hauled out the Silhouette and cutting files, and then started thinking what will this card be for? I thought  that the cheerful flowers would brighten someone’s day, specially someone who might not be feeling well. This got me thinking about Audrie’s challenge, to use “healing words”.  I got out an old Get Well card (I bought old cards that were on sale at our local library and found that they were great  for inspiration and the sentiments written inside), copied (and re-worded) the sentiment, printed it in Artists Script font, and glued it to the back of the part that swings. Here is how it looks like inside:2017-Apr-29c

The sentiment on the left goes:  Think of flowers blue and gold, petaled beauty you can hold; Think of sunshine warm and bright, And lovely starshine in the night; Then know that someone does care, and is lifting you up in prayer; 

The last part of the verse “And hoping that you’ll soon be feeling better”, was printed on vellum. The next time I make this card, I’ll print that part directly on the designer paper (working with vellum can be a pain at times, specially gluing it!). I added flourishes all over the inside – these were cut on the Silhouette and watercolored also, because it kind of looked too plain (but now, it’s over the top, LOL!). The designer paper I used came from my scraps – it’s spattered with white, green and dark brown.

The inside is all jazzed up, so to balance the card front, I spattered white paint on the green card base (Bazzill – emerald city), and also added cut flourishes in the corner. “Happy Thoughts” was printed on vellum using Artists Script font, and overlaid onto the central panel:

2017-Apr-29d

Thank you so much for coming over to take a peek!

 

2017-Apr-25a

 

***Update: Pam chose this card  to be the Color Challenge Favorite  for the week (squealing happily)! Thank you, so much, Pam – it is such an honor!
Color challenge favorite copy

I didn’t plan to make a card today, but when I saw the colors chosen by Pam at SplitcoastStamper’s Color Challenge, I just couldn’t resist. So the colors that had to be used were Pink Pirouette, Soft Sky and Smoky Slate – soft colors that’s fantastic when put together. So here I am again, embroidery floss in hand (yes, I do have plenty of those, in lots of different colors, lol!), making flowers for a second Proverbs 31:28 card. I always print a second sentiment or verse when I’m making a card, just in case I make a mistake…so I’m using the scripture that I printed yesterday (see my first card using this verse).

For this card, again, I used Strathmore Watercolor paper (cold press 90 lb) cut to make a 4.25″ x 5.5″ card base. The gray cardstock (Recollections) measures 2.5″ x 3.75″ and has a vellum overlay (The Paper Company). The vellum was cut an inch longer than the gray cardstock so that I can fold it over and the adhesive won’t show through. The blue flowers were made from DMC floss # 4020 – it’s variegated, so it has those beautiful soft blue hues. The pink flowers were made from DMC floss #3716(pink) and the centers from DMC floss “blanc” (white). These flowers were made like pompoms, using a 26-gauge floral wire to tie the floss together and also serve as stems. I added some curled wire for more interest (they look like flower buds). The leaves were punched from the same gray cardstock with a Martha Stewart leaf punch. Using a Chalk Writer (Craft Decor), I doodled short lines on the leaves. The entire floral arrangement was hot glued onto the vellum/gray cardstock piece and mounted on the card base. The Scripture print was glued over the flowers (now, I realize that I should have made the vellum/gray piece longer…oh, well!), and half pearls were added on each side. Pearls were also added on top of each blue flower. Here is a close-up of the flowers:

2017-Apr-25b

Thank you for taking a peek!