***Update: Jaydee chose this card to be A Cut Above! Yay – doing the happy dance! Thank you so much, Jaydee, it’s such an honor, and I’m so grateful!

Cut Above Paper Players

I am quite excited because this is a first for me: making and posting a card for The Paper Players challenge on Monday! Yeah!!! Sandy gave a Sketch Challenge this time, and something about it just made my creative gears go spinning and whirring, that in no time at all, I came up with a card that I’m happy with!

The card base was cut first from watercolor paper (Strathmore cold press 90 lb) to make a 4.25″ x 5.5″ card. I stamped some wild grass (from Mark’s Finest Papers) on the upper middle half with Ranger Distressed Inks (peeled paint) and sponged the white spaces in between the grass stems with the same ink to create the background for the embroidery floss flowers. The flowers were made from DMC floss #550 (plum), #732 (pink), and a variegated pink/yellow floss from my scraps. I used a 26-gauge green floral wire to tie the floss and serve as stems for these “wildflowers”. Half-pearls (Recollections) were put in the centers of plum-colored flowers. The middle panel was cut with a window and popped up with foam tape to create a shallow recessed area for the flowers (Bazzill Basics Lily Pond). The Bible verse was printed in Bernhardt Fashion BT font on the same watercolor paper, then was anchored by two half-pearls on each side.

My only regret is that I couldn’t follow the sketch exactly, I had to move down the horizontal piece, because it wasn’t working when it was on the flowers. Sigh. Just can’t win them all, lol!

Thank you, Sandy, for an awesome sketch, and thanks, everyone for looking!

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For this week’s Inspiration Challenge at Splitcoaststampers, Lois pointed us to the Scor-Pal Pinterest Board, which showcased interesting papercrafting projects (ones that are right up my alley!). I chose Dina Kowal’s card because I loved the soft hues of pink, the arrangement of flowers on one side, and the pretty bow that completed the look. This project is also for Scor-Pal’s More Than One Score Challenge #36 Interactive Project and Simon Says Wednesday Challenge: Shower and/or Flowers.

This project is something that I always make ever since I made the template – I make a whole bunch during Christmas! The instructions plus a template for making this beautiful gift card holder can be found here: Framed Gift Card Holder.

In keeping with Dina Kowal’s style, I used soft hues of yellow (instead of pink), arranged the flowers on the same side, and used a sheer white bow. This holder used a 12×12  white cardstock, decorated with strips of yellow polka dot paper (American Girl). The yellow hydrangeas are from Prima, the sentiment was printed using a combination of Bernhardt Fashion BT and Albemarle Swash fonts. I put a yellow twine bow to make it easy to pull out the gift card, see below:


Thank you so much for viewing!

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“Way to Go” Boat Card

Posted by: Gemin General, Projects


This week at The Paper Players, Leanne’s challenge is to use a vehicle on a clean and simple card. For me, clean and simple (CAS) in card-making terms, has come to mean using as few colors, as few brush strokes, as few words, as few layers, on a smallest area of the card possible, to get the most meaning to the recipient.  Well, that’s just me – it means something different to each and every card-maker – but what I stated in the previous sentence is what I strive for whenever I make a CAS card.

It’s a tough order, sure, but what are challenges for! It’s to push you out of your comfort zone,  makes you sweat, makes you question your processes that you have down-pat, and in the end, makes you grow and discover new ways to make a card. Making a CAS card for me is probably 90% mental exercise, and 10% hands-on experience.

So, for this card, yes, it was quick and easy to make,  seeing that it has very few elements. However, the idea took a long time to spawn (see, the challenge was posted Sunday, and here I am, posting 4 days later, LOL!). I started with a piece of watercolor paper and, using blue and touches of green watercolor gel crayons, painted the waterline. Next, I used a mixture of yellow and orange gel crayons to paint a semicircle for the sun. Small bits of red and black scrap paper were cut to make the boat. The sentiment was printed using BankGothic Md BT font, stretched out 180%.  I was hoping that I could just mount the watercolor piece on a white cardstock base, but it needed something more. So, going a bit against  having “as few layers as possible”, I matted it with blue cardstock, and it “pulled” the card together.

Thanks for reading my ramblings, LOL!

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This card is for three challenges at SplitCoastStampers. The first one is Inspiration Challenge #593, where we use Gloria Stagmer’s Pinterest board, Floral Arrangements , and my inspiration piece is this picture (love the eucalyptus leaves and the flowers peeking among them). The second challenge is Clean and Simple #425  , where dimensionals should be used. The final challenge is to use the colors Bermuda Bay, Real Red, Basic Black and Crumb Cake – Color Challenge #631.  Whew! Yup, got them all covered with this card!

The red flowers were made from embroidery floss (I don’t know if a tutorial is needed here, because it really is very easy to make them – it’s like making pompoms, only with embroidery floss), and used black rhinestones for the centers. The “eucalyptus leaves” were made by punching tiny circles using an ordinary 3-hole punch, then just strung and glued with a bit of glue on a 28-gauge green floral wire. The Bible verse was printed using BernhardFashion BT font on a Georgia Pacific 110 lb white cardstock. The oval shapes were cut on the Silhouette.  Here is a close-up pic:


Thanks for visiting!

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Floral Teapot/Tea Caddy

Posted by: Gemin General, Projects


For this week’s Inspiration Site at SplitcoastStampers, Audrie showed us Floral Arrangements by Gloria Stagmer. I can’t hide my excitement with this site, I just love florals! I could look at this site for days on end and not run out of creative juices! When I saw this teapot filled with flowers, I thought I’d dig up Gem’s Cottage teapot template and give it a “fresh” look (for those who have a cutting machine, we have the cutting file here).  This little teapot is also my entry at Scor-Pal’s More Than One Score Challenge #36 – Interactive Project.

This is a pretty simple template with just two pieces. I cut the template pieces from pink cardstock (Recollections), and scored it following the instructions (now you see how beat-up my Scor-Pal is, it’s because it’s about 10 years old, but it still works and I use it all the time, LOL!). 2017-Apr-12c

After scoring both pieces, the edges and score lines were sponged with Ranger inks in Sepia. The design area (template is also included) was cut from The Rustic Stack by DCWV, with edges and score lines sponged like the teapot base. I decorated the part that forms the “lid” with flowers that mimic the designer paper: flowers were punched from a scrap of pink cardstock and edges were sponged with brick red, centers were punched from scraps of yellow cardstock, and the stamen is from Recollections. The stems and leaves were punched and cut from Lily Pond cardstock (Bazzill Basics). 2017-Apr-12d

I like how this turned out, and of course, I had to do it on the other side, too!


Since it is a tea caddy, it is filled with… my favorite tea, of course!


Thank you for looking!



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I am so excited today because at SplitcoastStampers, Audrie chose Floral Arrangements board by Gloria Stagmer as the Inspiration site this week! Wheeee! I am just squealing with delight here because florals are my absolute favorite theme when making cards (it’s not really that obvious, right? tee-hee-hee-hee). My inspiration is this floral arrangement, I just love the deep coral color of the lilies and tulips in the foreground.

For this card, I made flowers with embroidery floss (DMC #352 – small flowers, variegated floss in similar shade – don’t know the number because it’s a scrap from another project for the medium flowers), the stems were cut in different heights – from an inch to about 3 inches, put a half pearl for the centers and arranged them in a pretty bouquet. Here is a close-up of the flowers:


The leaves were punched from Birthday Lime Stripes cardstock by Queen and Co, using Martha Stewart  and EK Success leaf punches. The  beautiful dp for the background is cut from The Garden Tea Party Stack by DCWV. The base is a cream cardstock by Recollections, and the sentiment is printed on the same paper using BernhardFashion BT font. Thanks for viewing!


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“Thistle” Thank You

Posted by: Gemin General


I had always enjoyed playing with The Paper Players before I had my 3-yr hiatus, and so this week, I went and peeked what were they up to…  Joanne has this color challenge (one of my favorite color combos!) that I just couldn’t resist.


I decided to go CAS for this challenge, letting the “thistles” be the center of attraction with very few elements to distract the eye with.  I keep saying “thistles” because they are the closest flowers that look like them, but they don’t exactly look like thistles, either (grins sheepishly). Anyway, these flowers were made from embroidery floss (DMC – #552 – plum; #522 – sage). Here is a close-up:


They look soft and fluffy, and they are soft and fluffy – mail-friendly, too! The flowers are pretty easy to make, and since I only needed two, making both of them took less than 10 minutes. The “reeds” at the back of the flowers were thin slivers cut from Bazzill cardstock (Lily Pond), and the sentiment was printed using BernhardFashion BT font.  Thanks for looking!

***Update: Thank you very much, Sandy Mathis for choosing this card as your “Cut Above”!  Cut Above Paper Players

Thank you also to everyone who commented – I appreciate and treasure each of your comments!


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After a 3-year hiatus, it’s such a good feeling to be back designing and crafting once again! I headed over to SplitcoastStampers to get some inspiration and I was in for a real treat! The Featured Stamper for this week is Anita Kejriwal, and her work is simply eye-candy… she has pages and pages of beautiful floral cards, most of which I’m itching to case. I chose this card  because of its spring-y colors and the cascading effect of the bluebells. With my card, I used similar colors, flipped the layout on its side, but kept the oval in the center. “Thank You” was printed using Shellahera Script font (downloaded from dafont.com), cut into an oval shape with Silhouette, then given dimension using foam tape dots. The “calla lilies” were made using mulberry paper rose petals (from Prima), one petal for each lily, folded and glued over a stamen/flower center (from Michaels). Leaves punched from scraps of green cardstock, polka dot strip from Garden Tea Party by DCWV, very thin strips of sage green cardstock were cut for stems. The 1/8″ wide pale green ribbon also came from my stash – and after hot gluing that bow, I called it done!

Close-up of lilies:


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Thinking Mouse

Posted by: Gemin General, Projects


Almost 10 years ago, during PCCrafter’s heyday as provider of digital art, Laurie Furnell (one of PCCrafter’s popular artists), released the set “Cats”. I remember being so excited (I confess to being a cat person) and bought it right away. The nice thing with these older digital art sets by PCCrafter was that, not only did they include the painted version of each image, but also the line art. Continue reading »

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Trust me, this version of a slider card is really easy, thanks to this idea of Alice Golden! For this card I started by printing a hot air balloon digi image (you can grab it at the end of this post) on water color paper. Continue reading »

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