Saturday, June 30, 2012

A Bit of International Bazaar

Bear with me today ladies, my post is likely going to be all over the place... my mind is going a mile a minute! I earned the Grand Vacation Incentive Trip with SU! today. Totally, 100% unexpectedly. I did NOT expect to get the big trip this year. But next April, I am going to FIJI! I'm still in shock, can't believe it and am so excited. The only unfortunate thing is that the trip falls on my son's birthday. But he'll only be 4 and I'm sure he'll understand ;)

I'm going to do a quick post today, I feel like I could probably go off track easily! I really loved Cindy Hall's sketch at Freshly Made Sketches this week. It's clean, neat, fresh ;) I really wanted to play with my new, vibrant and colorful International Bazaar DSP. It has some pretty funky patterns that make a very good background! Most of the colors in it are from the Brights Collection which is probably my favorite. I added a few stamps from Bright Blossoms, a greeting and voila, a clean, fresh card :)

Tips & Tricks:

*SU! doesn't make the 5-1/2" x 5-1/2" envelopes anymore so using my Simply Scored Scoring Tool I made my own. Didn't take more than a few minutes and I could customize it with the International Bazaar DSP.
*I love the little flowers in Bright Blossoms and I love to use the 'marker-to-stamp' technique with them. Since the SU! Markers have the same ink in them as the ink pads, you can stamp with them and get gorgeous multi-colored images.
*I thought my flowers needed a bit of bedazzling. So I added on a few Basic Rhinestones :)
*While I absolutely LOVE my Modern Label Punch, I'm so glad that I can use the Ticket Duo Builder Punch to switch things up a bit from time to time. It worked perfectly on this card.

I hope this bright, cheerful card brightened your day a bit. With all the excitement I've had, I don't think it could get any brighter ;)

'Til next time, keep letting stamps bring out your creativity!

Friday, June 29, 2012

Dino Punch Art

I did have another blog post planned for today. But then I worked on this week's Friday Mashup Challenge. We were challenged to
1. Make a project with Punch Art;
2. Make a project featuring your Favorite Animal; or
3. Mash it Up and create a project with an animal using punches.

I have a lot of favorite animals... monkeys, pigs, dolphins, fish. But I do love dinos, too. I came across this cute punch art dino surfing the web. It's CASEd but I don't have any info about the original.

Here's a quick breakdown of how I made the stegosaurus and the palm trees:
Body: I used the 2-1/2" Circle Punch. I punched out the circle, then put it back in and trimmed off part of it. You'll have pointy sides so I rounded them out with my Paper Snips. You can use the Wide Oval Punch as well. The color is Always Artichoke.
Tail: I used the 2-1/2 Circle Punch again. I punched out part of the circle, discarded it and punched over top of the area where I punched the first circle to make a crescent.
Armour: This was super easy - Boho Blossoms Punch. The color is River Rock.
Head: The Large Oval Punch was perfect for 'Steg's' head.
Legs: I used the Large Oval Punch again and cut the punch-outs in half and voila - 4 legs :)
Tree Trunks: The Modern Label Punch makes a great tree trunk. The color is Soft Suede.
Palm Tree Leaves: I once again used the Large Oval Punch. Then, I used my Paper Snips to cut out the 'leaves' in the ovals. The color is Old Olive.

The grass was easy. I cut a 1" strip of Old Olive card stock and snipped the blades with my Paper Snips. I embossed the dino parts with the Square Lattice Embossing Folder. I sponged the dinosaur, its armor, the grass and the palm leaves with Always Artichoke. The tree trunks were sponged with Soft Suede.

I can't wait to give this card to a lucky little birthday boy or girl :) Hope you've enjoyed this card, 'til next time keep letting stamps bring out your creativity!

Thursday, June 28, 2012

Colorful Daydream Medallions

Wow - it's Thursday! How did that happen? I'm having a hard time keeping up with things lately... my daughter finished school for the summer last week and we've been spending lots of time hanging out. But that means that my crafting time has been seriously reduced ;) Actually, that's not true... Anna's a crafter, she helped me scrapbook today :) But everything takes a bit longer and I just don't have the same amount of time to blog, write newsletters, etc. But I'll get on top of it. Tonight!

What do you think of the sketch at Try Stampin' on a Tuesday this week? I love it! I know it looks like it was made for the Delicate Doily Sizzlit, but to me it screamed Daydream Medallions and the Floral Frames Framelits. And conveniently, the wonderful brown UPS truck brought them for me on Tuesday when I made this card. I did cheat a bit because I made the card a standard A2 size, not square. But in retrospect, I should've made it square and then made my own envelope with my Simply Scored Diagonal Plate. Next time :)

Tips & Tricks:

*Like the DSP? It's the new International Bazaar. The UPS guy was nice enough to bring that for me on Tuesday, too :)
*SU! tells us which colors are in the DSP. It made choosing the colors for my medallions a snap! I really love the Pacific Point, Tangerine Tango, Daffodil Delight and Lucky Limeade color combo. Using the color combinations in the DSP also forces me to think outside my box.
*I know some of the International Bazaar DSP is pretty busy. But it makes a fantastic background. Don't be afraid to use these busier patterns - your cards will thank you for it :)
*I sponged the edges of the medallions with Soft Suede. They needed a little something to make them stand out a bit. I also used my Bone Folder to curl the edges of the biggest medallion.
You know what I love most about this card? It looks great in both landscape and portrait orientations.
*Did I ever mention how much I love Framelits? These new Floral Framelits have such wonderful shapes and are so easy to use. One of my fave accessories, hands down!

Hope you've enjoyed this card. Which is just a smidge out of my box. 'Til next time, keep letting stamps bring out your creativity!

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Postage Due!

I am totally in love with this stamp set! Postage Due. It has a gorgeous larger stamp which works well as a background stamp, as well as few other postage-type accent stamps. Even though there are only four stamps, there are so many different things you can do with it. I used it at a meeting with my upline and was sooo glad I ordered it... Now I'm using it :)

For my card, I used the sketch in this week's Mojo Monday Challenge. It was a 'Round or Square' challenge, but I decided to go rectangle. Because since when do I follow rules ;) 

Tips & Tricks:

*Love the little polka dots? I'm using the new Polka Dot Parade DSP. So cute!
*I used the same stamp for the background as well as focal point on my card. I wanted to make sure the 'no. 3' was prominent - it's my favorite number ;)
*I did a lot of sponging on this card. I sponged the edges on the scallop square, on the focal panel as well as the emobssed Soft Suede mat. Sponging is a very cost-effective way to 'embellish' and 'vintage-ize' your cards.
*One thing I love about Stampin' Up! card stock is that it's dyed all the way through - no white core. It's also nice and thick. So to add a little something to my cards I can tease it with the Bone Folder and separate the layers. Another easy, cheap way of adding a little something extra to the card.

We'll be making this card at my Fast & Fabulous Monthly Card Class tomorrow. I hope the ladies love it! I still have a few spaces if you're interested, too. 'Til next time, keep letting stamps bring out your creativity!

Monday, June 25, 2012

A Fun Party Card

I had lots of fun making today's card! I used two card challenges to inspire me for today's cards. I decided not to 'mash it up' at the Friday Mashup Challenge and simply made a 'party time' card. You'd think this would be easy, but it was actually a bit harder than I anticipated... I ended up using the pinwheels from the Sweets for the Sweet stamp set which I found out worked really well with the Patio Party DSP. It has pinwheels in it too :) And do cupcakes say 'party' or what?

I used the sketch from Clean and Simple Stamping this week. I changed it up a smidge (surprise, surprise) but I really love the way the squares are lined up just a bit differently on each side. I did try putting the dahlia in the place indicated on the sketch, but it just didn't look right - it looked *much* better on the ribbon.

Tips & Tricks:

*Do you like the little flower on the Midnight Muse Stitched Satin Ribbon? It's the new In Color Dahlias. I LOVE them! And they are so easy to attach with Glue Dots.
*Since every party needs some bling, I put a few rhinestones on my pinwheels.
*So many people are too scared of cutting out their stamped shapes. But I say you should just try it! These pinwheels are very easy to cut out and I love the two-tone look it gives them!
*What do you think of the background? It's the new Argyle Embossing Folder! One of my favorite accessories from the new cattie :)

I hope this card has put you in a party kind of mood :) I really love this sketch and definitely will use it again!

'Til next time, keep letting stamps bring out your creativity!

Sunday, June 24, 2012

Sunny Colors at Sunday Stamps!

I should've posted this yesterday so that it hit your inboxes this morning - on Sunday! But I compeletely forgot... I am posting now though, and it's still Sunday, so I guess that's not too bad :p This week at Sunday Stamps we had a fun, sunny color challenge: Daffodil Delight, Old Olive and Basic Black. To make this card even more sunny and summery, I used the new Summer Silhouettes stamp set.

I love all different images in this stamp set - so many options. I chose the little dandelions so that I could do some two-step stampin' :)

Tips & Tricks:

*I used black ink for the dandelion 'puffs' but I did second generation stamping so the puffs came in greyish.
*One of the new embossing folders in the Delicate Designs set (there's two) has this cute doily edge border. I trimmed around the round edges to give it a scalloped look.
*I really love the Loving Thoughts stamp set that was carried over from the 2012 Occasions Mini. It has greetings just a bit different than the usual like 'Create', 'Dream', and 'Memories' that are great for a large variety of cards as well as scrapbooking.
*Don't have Old Olive twine? Use a thin 'thread' of card stock instead :)
*Love this card? Come make it at my Fast & Fabulous Card Class this Wednesday from 7:30 - 9. We'll be making 6 cards, 3 each of 2 designs with all new stamp sets! It's a great class for beginners as well as more experienced stampers :)

I hope you enjoyed this Sunday Stamps card. 'Til next time, keep letting stamps bring out your creativity!

Saturday, June 23, 2012

More Christmas in June with the Star Tree

Yeah, I know. It's June. It's hot out. We're swimming in pools and sunbathing at beaches. We should not be thinking about Christmas... but I am! I love the idea of making a few Christmas cards *before* the season starts. That way when I'm knee-deep in the Christmas rush, I already have some cards made :) That's what the Merry Monday Challenge is all about! This challenge comes out every Monday so I'm sliding in at the last moment! (But... what's new, right? ;) )

I used the new single stamp Star Tree for my card. And do you like the embossing at the bottom? I did that instead of the ribbon. I used the new Delicate Designs Textured Impressions Embossing Folder for this. There are two edge embossing folders in the package. One of them has this snowflake-looking design. I think it's supposed to be more of a doily, but when I saw it I immediately thought CHRISTMAS! lol!

Tips & Tricks:

*I did a simplified easel for this card. I cut a piece of 4-1/2" x 5-1/2" Pool Party card stock and folded it in half lengthwise making a 4-1/2" x 2-3/4" card base. Then I attached the 4" x 5-1/4" piece of Island Indigo card stock.
*I love all the little stars on the tree. I used my Two-Way Glue Pen to put some Dazzling Diamonds Glitter on all of them to give it that Christmas-y twinkle!
*I know I've used the Labels Framelits a lot lately, but how could I *not* use them on this card? The tree fits perfectly!
*I really love this color combo for Christmas. I know it's not traditional but I find the Pool Party is quite 'icy' blue and the Island Indigo gives a great contrast. I know the names of the colors don't sound Christmas-y either but you have to admit, it works!

If you love this card and want to get a head start on your Christmas cards, come to my Christmas in July! Class on July 19th. Promises to be lots of fun, using ALL NEW stamps and there was some talk of Christmas music ;) I hope to see you at this class... 'til next time, keep letting stamps bring out your creativity!

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Flowering Flourishes with Buttons

One of my favorite new stamp sets from the 2012/2013 Catalogue is Flowering Flourishes. I thought that the beautiful flowery brocades would make a good background stamp, as well as a beautiful focal point for a card. They would be gorgeous on a scrapbook page, too. I have been putting together my new stamp sets and trying to decide which sets to use for which cards.

After seeing this week's fantastic Freshly Made Sketch, I knew that I could showcase the beautiful large flourish on it. I was really undecided on which colors to use. I really love this particularly DSP from Floral District and based my color selections on it (Baja Breeze, Rich Razzleberry and Daffodil Delight).

Can you imagine how pretty this flourish would be if I embossed it with several colors? Or tone-on-tone as a card background? I can't wait to use it on many other cards ;)

Tips & Tricks:

*I can't remember where I saw the buttons on this flourish, or it may have been the In Color Dahlias, but I really love how it adds a little pizzazz to the already pretty image!
*I really love the stitched grosgrain ribbon. Rich Razzleberry is my favorite Stampin' Up! color so I made sure to order a roll... I wasn't sure how I'd feel about the stitching, but I'm SOLD! :)
*Don't recognize the punch I used for the greeting? It's the new Ticket Duo punch. It punches out a ticket shape. A bit different than anything else they have and I love it!
*I can't get enough of the Fancy Fan Embossing Folder! I used it on all my projects today ;) I think it's going to be just as well as loved as the Polka Dot Embossing Folder.

This card will most certainly make a lovely birthday card for someone special! 'Til next time, keep letting stamps bring out your creativity!

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Thinking of You...

A friend of mine (and a fellow demo) has been going through a hard time. I had to drop off some things at her house so I included this card for her. I just wanted to let her know that even though we were both busy women, I was there for her and thinking of her. I know she loves the pink and brown combination, so I hope she liked this card.

I'm really loving the Clean and Simple Stamping challenge site that I stumbled across a few weeks ago. As the name would suggest, their sketches are 'clean and simple', just my style.

Tips & Tricks:

*I wanted a large scallop border at the bottom, to coordinate with the wider Crumb Cake Seam Binding Ribbon. I used my Tasteful Trim Bigz XL Die, cut out the border. Then I hid the seam between the border and cardstock on the top part of the card with the ribbon.
*The butterfly is from the Creative Elements stamp set. I cut it out with my Paper Snips. If you'd prefer to punch out a butterfly, check out the new Papillon Potpourri stamp set and coordinating Elegant Butterfly Punch.
*I wanted to make the butterfly pop! I stamped it in Early Espresso and then in Pretty in Pink and then I layered them. Love how it turned out.
*The scallop border looked a bit too plain to me. To fancy it up a bit, I added the Pearl Jewels to each scallop. Love these little embellishments!

I really hope this card brightened my friend's day. 'Til next time, keep letting stamps bring out your creativity!

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Playing With Some New Toys

Today was a great day. The little brown truck (aka UPS truck) pulled up at my house and dropped off a 23 lbs box of goodies for me to play with! No, it wasn't all mine, there were lots of goodies for the ladies who attended my New Catalog Event almost two weeks ago. But I did get a bunch of stamp sets, all of the new In Color Ribbons, some of the 1/4" Stitched Grosgrain Ribbon, new DSP, some Big Shot stuff and some new punches. Fun times!!! :)

I used the sketch above from Let's Try Stampin' on Tuesday for my card today. I wanted a sketch where I could use my new stamps, new DSP and In Color Ribbon. I think it worked :) Of course, as you can see I changed it up - a bit. Lol. I also used the Four Seasons Hostess Set. Isn't that birdie so cute!

Tips & Tricks:

*I love love love the new Fancy Fan Embossing Folder. It is so gorgeous and classic! I can see myself using this one a lot!
*Have you seen the new Paper Piercer and Essentials Paper-Piercing Pack? So many shapes you can pierce: the Heart, Curly Label, Designer Label and more! All coordinating with our punches! I used the circle template on this card.
*I really loved these rolled flowers and I replaced the scallop edge on the sketch with them. The technique is simplified paper quilling. I had done this technique a few weeks ago in another card and I had to refer to my own post about it to remember how to do it. How silly is that!
*The ladies at my Stamper's Group are doing this card this Sunday. I really wanted them to try out some of the new products. Want to come and learn some advanced techniques? Come try the group out on Sunday or join a new one starting in August/September :)
*I am *really* loving the Stitched In Color Ribbon. It is so soft and shiny! And don't you love how the Summer Starfruit Ribbon looks golden? So pretty...

The Polka Dot Parade DSP is so much fun! I love the bright colors and all the polka dots! (Of course ;) ) I really hope the ladies enjoy this card on Sunday! And I'm so glad I've finally got my new goodies... I have a few more coming next week :) Happy days!

'Til next time, keep letting stamps bring out your creativity!

Sunday, June 17, 2012

A New Challenge...

... and I'm on the Design Team. That's right! Little 'ol me. I'm so excited! The challenge is called Sunday Stamps and Holly at Holly Beary Creations started it. We'll be alternating between sketch challenges and color challenges and this week we did a sketch challenge.

Isn't this a great sketch? I love it when they're not too busy and still allow some room for creativity! I decided to combine the Sunday Stamps sketch with the Dynamic Duos Color Challenge. This week, we were challenged to use Melon Mambo and Basic Black on our card.

I know I used these Labels Framelits in my last card (hubby's birthday card) but after I decided what I was stamping, I had to use them again ;) I wanted to use the En Francais background stamp and what goes better with that than the Eiffel Tower from Artisitic Etchings? Then I reached into my French Teeny Tiny Wishes and pulled out 'je pense a toi' (thinking of you) and this card was born. I love it all on the Whisper White background - it tones down the darkness of the black and brightness of the melon.

Tips & Tricks:

*I didn't just stamp the En Francais stamp on the Melon Mambo... I heat embossed it with Clear Embossing Powder. I love the extra texture and sheen it gives it. Makes it look like a DSP.
*I love the large scallop edge from the Bigz XL Tasteful Trim die, but something here was missing. I added a few inexpensive Rhinestone 'bedazzlers' and it fixed my 'problem'.
*To make my Eiffel Tower and sentiment really 'pop', I embossed them in Black Embossing Powder. I love the extra gloss and texture heat embossing gives my images - and it costs next to nothing!
*Don't have the Artistic Etchings stamp set yet? Add it to your stash! It is my 'go-to' set for feminine, masculine, birthday, thank you - basically everything cards!
*I again free-handed the notches in the card stock I stamped my greeting on with my Paper Snips. I could have used the Modern Label Punch but with the round look of the Framelits I wanted something a bit more angular.

I usually have a plan for my cards, who's going to get it. But this time, I just let my creativity guide me. I don't really have any upcoming birthdays or other occasions! Whoever it will be I hope they love it. The Melon is so bold, but the Eiffel Tower classic.

'Til next time, keep letting stamps bring out your creativity!

Saturday, June 16, 2012

Happy Birthday to My Hubby

This past Friday was my husband's birthday. He turned 35 so I wanted to make sure it was a great card. I also wanted to have gifts on the card because I didn't actually buy him anything. Why do you ask? Because he's a techie guy and likes computer things that I don't understand. He's setting up some computer system for our new house, needed some stuff and I told him to buy it himself :p So atleast I gave him a present on his card.

For my inspiration, I used this week's Freshly Made Sketch. It's so simple, yet so great. I don't often leave my card base so exposed and emboss it, but sometimes it gives just the right look! Even though the Patio Party DSP coordinates with the Make a Cake stamp set, I thought it worked really well with the gifts from Patterned Party.

Tips & Tricks:

*I don't use the Houndstooth Embossing Folder too often. But it's great for masculine cards. Like with the Square Lattice, I use Tab 2 on my multipurpose platform with it. Otherwise I find it cuts through my card stock.
*I stamped the gifts image in Midnight Muse and then I restamped in Summer Starfruit, Raspberry Ripple and Midnight Muse. I cut out the individual gifts and mounted them on Stampin' Dimensionals. Love how it make them pop up.
*To add a bit of cost-effective sparkle to my gifts without the mess of glitter, I added a Rhinestone to each of my gifts.
*I free-handed the notches on my 'Happy Birthday' banner. Then I used my Simply Scored Scoring Tool to score two lines on each side of the banner. I folded the banner to make it pop up. I got this idea from the wonderful Tara Murphy from Can't Stamp the Rain. Thanks Tara!

My hubby liked this card and he told me he really likes the new Summer Starfruit color. SU! has given us some great new colors for masculine cards :) 'Til next time, keep letting stamps bring our your creativity!

Friday, June 15, 2012

A Little Father's Day Oops ;)

Well ladies, sometimes I need to take a moment and actually *read*. Because sometimes I read too fast and that's where mistakes happen... My friend and downline, Tara Murphy, is hosting the Friday Mashup Challenge as the Designer today. So I went into my email, uploaded her post and saw that today's challenge was to do 'paper piercing' and/or use the color combination of Daffodil Delight, Rich Razzleberry and Pool Party.

I wanted to make a Father's Day card. So I knew the color combination was out and got busy paper piercing.  I haven't gotten the new SU! Essential Paper Piercing Pack so I used my retired Mat Pack as a piercing guide. (But watch out, next week I get the new Piercing Pack and I'll be piercing away cool patterns ;) ). I pierced all around the Whisper White square as well as in the Island Indigo scallop.

Looks great, right? But here's where the oops comes in... The challenge wasn't paper piercing, it was paper piecing. I'm so glad Tara told me that while I was making the card. I consulted the tutorial she did for Friday Mashup. Then I rejigged the design a bit. I already had the 24-7 heart stamp on my card. I then stamped it on Pool Party DSP and cut out the heart. And voila - a paper pieced card. Minimally pieced, but pieced nonetheless :)

Tips & Tricks:

*The Square Lattice Embossing Folder is fantastic for men's cards. I do find that I can use Tab 2 on my Multipurpose Platform (for the Big Shot) because it embosses so strongly. I just don't need as thick a sandwich.
*I love combining Island Indigo and Pool Party together. Especially with the In Color Ruffled Ribbon. Just awesome!
*I really like stamping on DSP. The pattern on the paper adds that 'je ne sais quoi' to your project.
*The piercing turned out really well. I love how the piercing guides help achieve even spaces between my holes.
*Making men's cards can be really challenging. A lot of stamp sets are geared towards women. But since the kids will be giving this card to their daddy, I thought the 24/7 heart image was more than appropriate ;)

I wish all daddies a very Happy Father's Day - I'm sure a lot of the crafty moms have been busy making gifts and cards for the daddies with the kids :) 'Til next time, keep letting stamps bring out your creativity!