Monday, November 23, 2009

Happy Thanksgiving!

Hello! Just a quick post to wish everyone a Happy Thanksgiving and to let you know I probably won't have anymore blog posts the remainder of the week. I am working on a bit of a project and then my mom is visiting from Las Cruces for the Thanksgiving holiday. We always have such a great time when she visits and the best part is that she is a stamper, too!! How cool is that?!!!

I will start posting again next week, so please come back :) Until then, I want to say that I am thankful for many things, and a few of them are the wonderful friends I have made in the stamping community, including: the fabulous gals who frequent China Phoenix 2 (and attend my classes, you ladies rock!), and the store's awesome proprietress (Nancy, you are a sweetheart!), my fellow teachers whom I have learned so much from (especially may good pal Kathy!), all of my talented blog friends, everyone who visits this blog, and all of my super wonderful Flickr pals! What a lucky, lucky girl I am :D Big hugs to all of you! May your Thanksgiving holiday be filled with lots of good food, and may you bask in the comfort and warmth of family and friends!

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Birds of the Air

Good Morning! Today I am featuring another box card that promotes visions of warm Springtime weather, because it seems like it is going to be a another chilly day here in Albuquerque. However, it is New Mexico and that means that we could have another string of warm days waiting for us just around the corner. While this weather diversity makes for exciting meteorological predictions, it also makes it virtually impossible to break out the cozy winter wardrobe, because we will still be juggling between wearing turtle necks one day and capris pants the next, for quite some time ;D

Today's card features a cloud stamp made by Alextamping, a leafy branch made by Memory Box, a flourish made by Penny Black, and the wonderful bird silhouette by Tim Holtz for Stamper's Anonymous. All of these images are truly some of my favorites :) I started by stamping the clouds on a white die cut panel. I swiped the panel with an embossing buddy, then I stamped the bird and embossed him with clear embossing powder. No Turquoise Iridescent Super Sparkle today, but, I wanted to. Next, I colored the open areas of the bird with Copics. Then I covered the entire bird and branch image with Versamarker pen and embossed with clear embossing powder twice to achieve a nice smooth, lacquer-like finish. Then I added the leafy branch and the flourish. I edged the panel with glitter glue to give it a bit of sparkle. I combined the stamped panel with some gorgeous K & Company scrapbook papers and added a few embellishments to finish it off.

Inside the card contains a pocket and the opposite side is where the sentiment resides. It reads, " The birds of the air nest by the waters; they sing among the branches. - psalm 104:12". How lovely is that :)

Thanks for visiting with me today ;D

Monday, November 16, 2009

"Drippy" Butterfly

Good morning! It's sunny here in Albuquerque today, but wow, is it cold! Brrrr... The brisk weather has me craving some cards that represent warmer temperatures, so I whipped up a couple of box cards that, to me, have a Spring-like feel to them.

I made this first card using a color palette that's a bit unusual for me. I love blues and greens together, but when inking the images up, I went for brighter versions of this palette, which I think, adds a bit of whimsy to this Tim Holtz "drippy" butterfly. LOL! I don't know how else to describe it :D I layered a TH background image on the paper first, then added the butterfly stamping him in Lagoon Blue Versafine ink, and embossed him with the Turquoise Iridescent Super Sparkle. I covered the butterfly in Versamarker pen and embossed him two more times using clear embossing powder to make him nice and smooth. I decided that the main image panel still needed something else, so I added a Hero Arts flourish in Vintage Paper distress ink around two of the edges. I paired the image panel with some lovely K & Company patterned papers and a few flower and gem embellishments.

The inside of the card contains a pocket on one side that is ideal for holding a gift card or small note to the recipient. The sentiment on the other side reads "Just living is not enough" said the butterfly "one must have sunshine, freedom, and a little flower"-Hans Christian Anderson. Ah, how true, wise butterfly :)

Tomorrow I will feature the second box card, so come back and check it out!

Thursday, November 12, 2009

A Softer Christmas Palette

A couple of weeks ago, I was roaming through the aisles of Hobby Lobby, when out of the corner of my eye, a soft glint caught my attention. I turned and gasped with delight as I happened a glance upon some of the most beautiful Christmas papers I've seen. I snatched this bundle of glittery goodness up and clasped it as if it were the secret to eternal youth (Ha! As if!). This little morsel of happiness just so happened to be a package of Signature Christmas Glitter Papers by My Mind's Eye. It did not hold the power to make me young again, but it did make me feel like a kid in a candy store, and that my friend, is pretty powerful stuff!

Yesterday, I drug this huge pad of paper out and carefully poured through each shiny page. I finally settled on the muted blue and brown papers you see above. They whispered soft vintage style to me so I paired some Tim Holtz Christmas stamps with them. You might think that the glitz of the papers themselves would have been enough for me, but not so! Years ago, when I first started stamping and had discovered the glory of embossing powder as if I were Magellan himself, I happened upon a little something called Turquoise Iridescent Super Sparkle made by Stamp A Mania. I was so smitten with this glimmery powder, I had to buy a whole 8oz. jar of it. As most of you know, embossing powder comes packaged in mostly .5 oz jars. So, take one of those jars and multiply it by 16 and you can just imagine this behemoth jar I purchased. But, I HAD to have it...! I NEVER wanted to run out of it!! LOL!! The jar is still mostly full today ;D Lucky for me, because I have fallen in love with it again and may use it all Christmas long!

I embossed the TH images first with the magic elixir that is Turquoise Iridescent Super Sparkle. Then I covered them again with Versamarker pen and embossed two more times with clear embossing powder. I love my Super Sparkle, but it does leave a rough grainy finish when used alone, so the addition of the clear embossing powder gives it a smooth lacquer finish while still showcasing that sparkle. A little distressing around the edges and a few carefully placed embellishments finish these cards off. Do you need some Super Sparkle to get through the holiday season? Find it here: Stamp A Mania

Now get off the Internet and go make some cards! LOL!!

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Stop! Wait a minute, Mr. Postman...!

Look at what I received in the mail yesterday!! A little envelope filled to the brim with miniature masterpieces! OMG! I was just about to burst with excitement as I ripped into it, like a 3-year old on Christmas morn. What did I find inside? Well, 9 of the cutest ATCs you ever did see :D

The Hero Arts hostesses ("hosti", as some of the followers have dubbed them) over at the HA Flickr Group Pool organized an ATC swap along with some of the Hero Arts designers. This swap was HUUUUUGE!! It involved not only avid followers from the United States, but also Canada and several countries overseas, as well. I'm sure it was no small feat for the "hosti", so I want to thank them for organizing, informing, and rallying this giant crafting family to participate. The "hosti" were also tasked with the enormous chore of breaking the participants into groups, receiving the ATCs, sorting them out, and sending them to their respective group participants. HUGE, I tell you!!

I hope my group doesn't mind (and if you do drop me a line and let me know), but I am posting pictures of the treasures I received in my ATC swap group. These pictures do not do these works of art justice. These ladies are uber-talented!


Row One:
***A beautiful butterfly ATC by Sandy Frio, accented with lovely stitching around the edges and pearls on the butterfly. Gorgeous!
***A layered masterpiece by Joshua Jiraffe Designs, with so many lovely details including a darling tiny tag to say "hi".
***A wonderful paper-pieced ATC by Tanya Caudill, who created her own superb patterned papers with Hero Arts stamps.
Row Two:
***A breathtaking creation by Ashley Marcu with layer after layer of fabulous detail.
***A fun, whimsical ATC by Dusty Penny (aka Joy) featuring a fabulous paper-pieced mixer and a bit of stylish bling. Love it!


Row One:
***A sumptious ode to Autumn by Stampersuzz with delicate white hightlights to accent the trees and a carefully placed bit of twine to finish it off. It looks like a tiny painting!
***A lovely Autumnal palette created by Vicky Martindale with lots of beautiful tiny details. Just gorgeous!
***A fabulously clever layout by Gina Van Vliet featuring a a wonderful layered flower and a delightful tag. So cute!!
Row Two:
***A lovely little creation by Kerry Wills that imparts a terrific message "live, laugh, love" in such a stylish manner. Perfect!!
***This is my ATC and as you can see, I couldn't resist adding a bit of bling and throwing on some glitter glue around the edges.

Thanks ladies for sharing your fabulous art with me! I will treasure these always :D

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Birds of Passage

Good morning! Just a quick blog post today. I made this card for a friend's birthday. He's a guy, so I really tried to limit the amount of glitz and bling I added. You'll notice, I didn't even try to sneak in a flower anywhere...LOL!! However, a little bit of glitter glue did make it's way to the edge of the main image panel. I have no idea how that happened ;D

These images are by Character Construction, a company with lots of fun, quirky stamps. My mom gave me the set that included the twig chair a while back and while I absolutely love it, this is the first time I managed to get it inky. I love breaking a brand new stamp in :) You'll notice that I triple embossed the bird and the chair.

I didn't include pics of the inside of the card, because I am still on the hunt for the perfect sentiment. The front of the card reads "we are but birds of passage and must build our nests of what materials we can find". How profound! This also came out of one of the Character Construction sets. Just an absolute excellent assortment!

I might even post another new card tomorrow. That will be 5 blog posts in one week!! Looks like a celebration might be in order! And how will I celebrate, you ask? By treating myself to a few new stamps, of course!! ;D

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Christmas ala Tim Holtz

Here's a card for those of you who prefer a more traditional take on Christmas. I used a more familiar holiday color palette and combined it with some lovely images by Tim Holtz for Stamper's Anonymous. I will be teaching this card and matching box envelope at China Phoenix 2 in December.

I started by die cutting my oval layers and the snowflakes. I randomly laid the snowflakes on the white panel and swiped the panel with a stipple brush and Antique Linen Distress Ink so I could capture a soft outline of the flakes on the background. Next, I swiped the entire panel with an Embossing Buddy, stamped the tall trees in Olympia Green Versafine Ink, and embossed the image with Turquoise Iridescent Super Sparkle embossing powder to give the trees some glitz. I covered the trees 2 more times with Versamarker and embossed them in clear powder each time to make the image appear smooth. I added the snowflakes across the top of the panel in Crimson Red Versafine Ink and embossed them in the Super Sparkle powder, as well.

You knew the tiny book would make another appearance somewhere, didn't you? LOL! I may have to cut a whole bunch of these to keep on hand :) I made this book by die cutting it on a parchment cover stock, adding distress inks to make it appear old, and stamping musical notes on top of it, because of course, it is a song book :) I added a ribbon and some gems to finish it off.

I used some gorgeous Penny Black patterned paper that I had acquired a long time ago. I just love this paper and it works great for this project. On the inside of the card I included a pocket with an insert for a handwritten message for the recipient and the sentiment on the other side reads "I will honor Christmas in my heart, and try to keep it all the year - Charles Dickens".

I hope you enjoyed today's card :D

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Twisted Christmas: Part 2

Hello everyone! Here is the second card I will be teaching as part of my Twisted Christmas class at China Phoenix 2 in November. Again, I used some images by Stampotique that really inspire a bit of creepy whimsey. I added a few Christmas accessories and glitz and there you have it! A theme that falls somewhere between Halloween and Christmas :D

I started with the spider image (Mr. Stripes) and stamped him on white cardstock. I colored him with Copics, added glitter hightlights to his body, and a couple of generous dots of Diamond Glaze to his eyes, and I sat him aside to dry. I stamped the hat and packages from the Christmas Cube, colored them with Copics, and covered them with Diamond Glaze as well, and sat them aside to dry. I stamped my three little friends (3 in a Round) on different colored cardstocks and cut out different elements from each piece of paper. I created a subtle background on the round white die cut circle by stamping a Hero Arts background stamp in Soft Leaf, following by a light stippling of Peeled Paint Distress Ink, and a generous spritz of Tattered Angels Glimmer Mist in Marshmallow.

I assembled my card and added the different layers of the 3 in a Round image using foam tape. I really wanted these little guys to look like they were looking out of a hole or a cave. Once my glittered and glazed images were dry, I cut them out and also added them to the card with foam tape. (I love foam tape!! I buy it at an office supply store in a disc the size of a steering wheel! Hahaha!) A big green bow and a few red gems finishes it off.

I couldn't find just the right word stamp to narrate the scene on the front of the card, so I had to make up my own by computer generating the following "Manuel didn't understand why his brothers had misgivings about the rustling on the roof when it most certainly must be Santa". LOL!!

If the past two cards are not your cup of tea, stay tuned tomorrow when I will feature a more traditional Christmas card using some Tim Holtz stamps.

Monday, November 2, 2009

Twisted Christmas: Part 1

It's the beginning of November and Christmas is already nipping at our heels. Have you thought about your Christmas cards yet? Well, I wasn't quite ready to put Halloween to bed, but by the same token, I wasn't quite ready to start working on Christmas either. I thought, why not do a couple of transition cards to combine the two holidays. I love the whimsy of Halloween and the glitz and glitter of Christmas, so I picked a few Stampotique images to carry out this theme. Here's the first of a two card class that I will be teaching at China Phoenix 2 in November.

The first time I spied this snowman (the stamp name is Global Warming) I knew I had to have him and he and I would grow to be great friends! LOL! The background I created by first stamping a Hero Arts snowflake background in Frost Dazzle Versamark ink on white cardstock and embossing in clear embossing powder. Next, I swiped Faded Jeans and Peeled Paint Distress inks on a craft sheet, misted it with water, and laid my embossed white cardstock on top to pick up that wonderful blotchy color. It didn't matter if it came out a bit messy, as that was even better for my card theme. Then I stamped my snowman on a separate piece of white cardstock, colored him with Copic markers, added dimensional glue to his scarf, hat and buttons, added glitter glue to highlight his body, and set him aside to dry (about an hour). After he was completely dry, I trimmed him out added some foam tape and attached him to my card. I would have sworn I had a rubber stamp that said "The weather outside is frightful...", but alas, I didn't. I ended up computer generating it for the inside of the card, because I was totally sold on that little phrase and nothing else would do :)

He makes me laugh every time I look at him ;D Stayed tuned tomorrow for part 2 of Twisted Christmas.