Monday, August 31, 2009

Trees and A Brayer

I was inspired by a recent post on the Gingerwood board to break out my much neglected brayer. I've never had much luck with getting good results from a brayer so I guess I just stopped trying. After watching this great tutorial on using a brayer, I think there may be hope after all!
This card started with stamping the trees (SU Lovely as a Tree) in black pigment ink and embossing with clear embossing powder. I punched a circle from the sticky end of a post it note and placed down where the moon is. Then I used the brayer to add more mustard and night of navy ink to the scene. I also used my white Signo pen to highlight one side of the tree trunks and the ground under the trees.
The sentiment is from the SU set called Elegant Cheer and I used a brayer with more mustard ink on white cardstock to make it match the main layer of the card.
The metal embellishments are SU's hodgepodge hardware and the grosgrain ribbon is SU also.

Maybe a little more practice will make my brayer one of my tools that gets used in my art studio!

Sunday, August 30, 2009

New Blog Feature: A Tour of my Art Studio

If you scroll all the way down to the bottom of the page, you'll be rewarded with a tour of my art studio. I love to see other artist's spaces so I decided to share mine. I hope you enjoy it!

I'm about to make some changes and paint some walls (so tired of white!) so I'll update the photos when I do that.

Mojo Monday #101

This is week number 101 over at Mojo Monday and it's a great sketch. The sketch is on the left and you can click here to visit the Mojo Monday Challenge Blog and see this week's challenge.

I decided to play along and here's my cards (I made two):
I strayed from the sketch a bit as I decided not to make my cards square as the sketch suggests. These cards are identical except for the final embellishment. The card base is made from designer paper from the DCWV All Dressed Up stack. I'm really loving this slab of designer paper because it's so thick and luxurious that it can be used as a card base. Loving it!
So, here's the first card. Simple tall card layered with some black cardstock, pretty in pink cardstock and more of that luxurious pink and black designer paper. A single large rhinestone and the thinking of you rub-on sentiment finish it off nicely. Clean and simple.
And here's the other card. Same design except instead of a sentiment I used a scalloped circle punch of white cardstock. It is sponged with some pretty in pink ink and layered with black and matching designer paper. Again, clean and simple.

I hope you enjoyed this one as much as I did! I'm really loving this paper! Have a great Sunday!

Oh, by the way, I added a new feature to my blog today. If you scroll all the way down to the bottom of the page, you will be rewarded with a tour of my art studio. I love to see other artist's spaces so I decided to share mine. I'm about to give it a little makeover by painting some of the walls and changing a few things and when I do, I'll update the pictures. I'm soooo tired of white walls in there! It's the ONLY thing in our home that is white and I can't stand it.

Saturday, August 29, 2009

2 Sketches 4 You #33

I decided to participate in this week's 2 Sketches 4 You challenge. The sketch is on the left and you can click here to go to the 2 Sketches 4 You challenge blog.

Here's my card:This card starts with a black cardstock base and layers of DCWV All Dressed Up designer paper. This stack has some great papers and they are nice and thick.
The big layer on the card is black and white and the smaller layer is the same pattern but it's pink and black.
The sentiment circle on the card is from the SU set called Circle of Friendship. The card is finished off with grosgrain ribbon and Swarovski crystal rhinestones.
Here's the inside layered to match.

I apologize that these pictures are not as good as they should be. My camera has been acting up lately and tonight it was very difficult to any pictures at all. I think the camera is about done and I'm upset over that because it's not that old and it wasn't cheap. I just don't seem to have good luck with cameras. If any of you have a recommendation for a decent camera at a good price, I would love for you leave that info in the comments or feel free to email me. Thanks.

After using my camera tonight, I have a feeling it's done and I'm not going to get any more good pictures out of it. Luckily I have a few more cards to share here that are already photographed. I need to figure what I'm going to do after that!

Hope you are having a great weekend!

Friday, August 28, 2009

You & Me

Here's another card that I sent out to Cards for Heroes last week. I love the look of black and white designs.
All of the images on this card are rub-ons. The sentiment is a rub-on of unknown origin from my stash and the rest are Stampin Up rub-ons. The base of the card is watercolor paper which gives the card a nice substantial feel.
I just love the simple elegance of these rub-ons. Hope you enjoyed this one.

I was hoping to have a yard sale this weekend but the weather is not cooperating and the forecast is rain all weekend. Hopefully the consolation prize will be time in my art studio!

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Autumn Hugs and Kisses

Today on my other blog (the one for my business) I featured my favorite autumn design in my line of jewelry. So....I thought that I'd show you some autumn leaves here too.
I made these two cards for my Cards for Heroes package last week. I love the colors. This set uses a watercolor stamping technique that is so easy. All you have to do is ink up your stamp with a rainbow/multi-color ink pad then spritz it lightly with water and stamp it on watercolor paper. This gives the image a little bit of softer look than just stamping normally with a rainbow ink pad.
The leaf images are from the SU set called Autumn Leaf Prints and the sentiment is from Everyday Expressions. The ink pad is Kaliadacolor Autumn Leaves.

I just love the change of seasons when it turns from summer to fall. For some reason, today I feel like it's starting. Maybe it's because I realized that we are less than 4 months away from Christmas. Boy is that sneaking up on us!

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Thinking of You

This is one of the cards that I sent to Cards for Heroes last week. I thought that the thinking of you sentiment would be just what a soldier would want to send home. And the little Parisian table and wine seemed romantic to me. Perfect.
For this card I used K & Company Classic K Margo designer paper and SU's French Twist stamp set.
I colored it with markers and a blender pen and added some stitching in a tan color that works with the paper.
The tearing adds some extra dimension and the grosgrain ribbon finishes it off nicely. Simple yet elegant. Perfect.

I was thinking about the impact that sending 25 cards to Cards for Heroes might have. At minimum, it will brighten 50 people's day.... 25 soldiers sending them to 25 wives, girlfriends, moms, children.... I hope you will consider joining me in supporting CFH. It will warm your heart. I promise.

Friday, August 21, 2009

Clean and Simple Birthday

Here's a quickie clean and simple birthday card. I'm on a roll with clean and simple, aren't I? This is new! I think what made the difference for me was starting with nice thick watercolor paper instead of plain old cardstock. It makes a real difference.

For this card I stamped the image from the SU set called Mostly Flowers in Blue Breezes Kaleidacolor rainbow ink then I punched them out with a square punch. They are mounted with foam tape to add some dimension.
The sentiment is from the It's Your Birthday SU set and a couple of Swarovski crystals really balances things out.

Someone from the Gingerwood birthday list is getting this card but I can't remember who because I mailed a whole STACK of cards out yesterday. Whoever it is, I hope they enjoy it!

Thanks for stopping by... see you tomorrow!

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Quick and Easy or Clean and Simple?

Is there a difference between "quick and easy" and "clean and simple"? And if there is a difference, which one does this card fall into? I'm confused. Well, either way, I love the look of this simple card and it it's quick.

I met my goal of making and sending 25 cards to Cards for Heroes this week. The box is packed up and ready for it's trip to the post office. I also included 2 Dear Hero letters so I guess you could say that I participated in their 25+2 challenge even though I didn't see that until my box was packed up.

This is one of the cards I sent:
I found a small piece of unknown designer paper in my stash and I punched it with a square punch. The squares lined up on the card nicely so I added a rub-on sentiment punched out with an oval punch.
Some white grosgrain ribbon and some faux stitching with my white Singo pen and it's perfect.
Here's the inside. I punched a small heart in the white layer for some added detail.

I hope you enjoyed this simple one. And would you consider joining me in the 25+2 challenge and send some cards to Heroes?

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Cards For Heroes, You Make Me Smile

I set a goal for myself to send 25 cards to Cards For Heroes by the end of the week. I've got about 15 done and this is one of them. If you don't know about Cards For Heroes, please go check out their website. They are doing a wonderful thing for deployed soldiers.
This is a fairly quick and easy card that uses sage shadow cardstock, Classic K Margo designer paper (by K & Company) and SU's everyday expressions for the sentiment. Some simple machine stitching and some grosgrain ribbon make this easy card look like a show stopper.
Here's a peak at my pile of cards so far. You will get a closer look at some of them in future blog posts so stay tuned!

Thanks for stopping by and thanks for checking out Cards For Heroes. I hope you will consider joining me in supporting such a wonderful idea.

Monday, August 17, 2009

Another Clean and Simple

This is basically the same card as the last post except after stamping the Fresh Greens Kaliadacolor ink pad, I spritzed it with some water and let the colors run a little bit.
I'm not sure which look I like best. What do you think? Do you like the watercolor look of this one or the clean look of the last post? I'm curious of your opinions if you would be kind enough to share them in the comments.
Have a great Monday and try to keep cool... it's going to be over 90 degrees here today which means it's going to be a lot hotter in most places!

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Clean and Simple

I've been trying do some clean and simple style cards. It's very hard for me. I LOVE the look of clean and simple and I love to see what others are doing with them but for some reason I have a very difficult time accomplishing it myself.
But I do like this one. The base is Marco's watercolor cardstock. That makes all the difference in my book. I am just not happy with the weight of regular cardstock for these kinds of minimal cards. Watercolor paper is substantial enough to use for this and it has a beautiful texture.

The colored ink blocks on this card are done simply by "stamping" a Kalidacolor rainbow ink pad onto the watercolor paper. Just leave the colors separated- don't slide them together. For this card I used the color Autumn Leaves. The little tab that slides the ink colors together is too tall to "stamp" the ink pad but you can easily remedy that by doing it on the edge of your stamping table.
After trimming the cardstock around the ink blocks, I stamped the leaf stamp from the SU set called All Natural in black.

I finished the card by tying grosgrain ribbon around the front of it. A tip for easily tying ribbon that will stay in place is to punch a hole in the card where you want your knot or bow. Now wrap the ribbon around the front of the card so both ends go around the back and then thread the ends up through the hole so they are coming through the front of the card. Make each end come up on opposite sides of the ribbon that laying across the front of the card and then tie a knot or a bow. I hope that make sense... I've been looking for a tutorial online to show you how it's done but I can't find one at the moment.

Hope you had a great weekend!

Saturday, August 15, 2009

Make Your Own "Clip it Up"

I've been seeing the Clip it Up all over the place lately on blogs. It's cool. Very cool. And expensive. I can see that it can be useful in so many ways and I was kind of wanting one. Then I realized that I had all the makings here to make something similar!

Check this out:

Okay, so it's not the same... I know. But when I tell you what it costs to put this together, you won't believe it! It's not the neat little spinner rack that the original comes with but this set up nicely uses the space under my cabinets.

And there's these cool little buckets too:
Okay, here's the deal.... it's all from IKEA.... and it's cheap!

Start with the rails- they are kitchen rails and you can find them here. There are two sizes and they are $1.99 and $2.99 each, depending on the size. I have 3 of the large hung under my cabinets. These rails work great for holding punches too.

Next, you need clips. Look here. They *appear* to me to be the same clips that the actual Clip it Up uses. They work great on the rails and they are $4.99 for 24 clips. They come with some little hooks too that can just be discarded. I'll let you know if I find a use for them.

Now just put the little clips on the rail after you hang it and you are good to go! The loop on the clips just fits on the rail- you kind of have to force it on there- so they aren't going to fall off. They work perfectly.

If you like the little pails that I have hanging on the rail too, you can find them here (Edit 11/25/13- It looks like they redesigned them since I bought mine). They are only $3.99 each. Can you believe it? You have to bend the top hook open a little to fit these rails but that works just fine.

So, let's figure this out.... with this idea, you can make your own Clip it Up for about $8.00 per 39 inches of rail. That's counting 24 clips... if you want to load it up with 48 clips that brings the price to $13.00. Now that's a deal!

Friday, August 14, 2009

Another "Inspired By" Card

This card didn't photograph as well as I'd hoped but I'm going to share it anyway. It's another card inspired by Jay over at Indigo Inklings. Click here to see the card that inspired me.
This is a monochromatic design using SU so saffron cardsock. The four embossed panels are embossed with the new cuttlebug embossing folder called Moroccan screen.
The sentiment is from the SU set called It's Your Birthday. The white flowers are Brides flowers that I overstamped with so saffron ink with a swirly image. The flower centers are homemade dew drops. Click here to see how they are made.

Thanks for all of the inspiration you've given me Jay! You helped coax my mojo back this week!

Edited to add: The sentiment in these photos looks smeared for some reason, doesn't it? I can't figure that out. In real life it's not smeared. It's pigment ink embossed with clear embossing powder. Hmmm.... odd.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Happy Birthday Card inspired by Indigo Inklings

You may have noticed that this card is very similar to the last one I posted and there's a reason for that. I had all kinds of leftover cardstock and designer paper left on my counter after the last one and I decided to use it up instead of putting it away (sliding it into my drawer of "extras" is more like it).
So... this card uses the same certainly celery cardstock base (the other half of the 12x12 sheet) and uses the same K & Company Hannah designer paper.
I thought this cuttlebug embossing folder matched the designer paper's pattern so embossed the main layer on an angle. It took some finagling to get it through the cuttlebug, but I did it. I got the idea from a card that I saw on Indigo Inklings blog (click here to see it). Thanks for the inspiration Jay. Please keep reading below for my comments about being inspired by someone's work.
And here's the inside.

Before I go, I wanted to point out that I added a new topic category on the sidebar called "Inspired By" and this is the first to fit that category. Some might call it CASEing, but I like to think of it as being inspired by someone's work. I also love to see when someone "CASE's" or is inspired by a card and shows the original too. I love to see the two cards and see what is different and what is the same. So hopefully you will find this topic as interesting as I do.

I have another card that was also inspired by Jay at Indigo Inklings that I will share tomorrow. Thanks for all the great inspiration Jay!

Thanks for stopping by!

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Thank you friends!

I want to thank all of the lovely ladies over at Gingerwood who send me the most beautiful birthday cards last week. I've added them all to a gallery on my picturetrail and you can see them by clicking here.

Mojo Monday #99

I know I've been missing in action for a couple of weeks and you've probably been wondering if I ran away or something. No, I'm still here. I am finding that my mojo sometimes takes a hike on me and seems to be in direct relation to the amount of stress in my life. I find this ironic because I thought papercrafting was a stress-reliever for me! Ha!

Well, this week's Mojo Monday Challenge brought my mojo back- I just hope it sticks around for a while!

The sketch is a fun one this week and here's my take on it:

For this card I used certainly celery cardstock layered with K & Company Hannah designer paper. The sentiments are from the SU set called It's Your Birthday.
I used a straight sewing machine stitch around the layers with beige thread.
I chose to make that top layer into a holder for a tag on my card. I did that by simply folding the designer paper into an open ended envelope. I stitched around the edges and punched the front layer with a circle punch.
Here's the tag pulled out of the slot. It is embellished with grosgrain ribbon, green brides flowers and paper flowers from my stash.
I added a small little layer of white cut with scallop scissors across the bottom of the tag holder.
And here's the inside embellished to match.

Thanks for stopping by... I hope to see you again soon!