Friday, October 31, 2014

Last Halloween Project of the Season

The decos for the office party are up and the potluck foods are making their way into the room.  My puking pumpkin turned out fab--thanks to my sweetie for carving.  We didn't have room on the platter for all of the veggies so the radishes, olives and cucumbers are in bowls in front of the raised platter.

I have to say it was very fun creating all the signage.  I just printed them but perhaps next year would spice them up with diecuts and such.

artichoke spinach dip from Costco = pumpkin puke
celery = zombie bones
carrots = witch fingers
peppers = veins and ligaments
olives = hatched spider eggs (accompanied by a rubber spider)
cucumbers = slices shaped into skulls
radishes = eyes of newt (bought ones in a bunch and left the root on to represent optical nerves)
pita chips = Hannibal's skin chips
Cheesy Larvae = mac & cheese
Maggots au Gratin = mac & cheese (they're having a mac & cheese off)
Hansel & Gretel pies
Monster munchies = people will invariably bring chips
Pick your poison = various drinks
graveyard dirt = chocolate dessert
pumpkin poop = chana masala
salad = Seymour's salad
grapes = peeled eyeballs

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

The Grand Stamp Re-organization Unveiling

I was in such an excited tizzy when I saw the Avery Elle stamp sleeves.  O.M.G.  Were they reading my mind?  I hate, hate, hate the typical thin cellophane packages that rip the moment you try to slide your stamps back in.  Hate!  Well, these aren't perfect but they are a darn sight better than those (I managed to tear an AE one down the side but quickly learned I can't stick my whole hand in there to retrieve something--duh)

So, the above pic is obviously before.  I had some of my stamps stored in the two containers in their original packaging.  If a set was smaller I had them in a separate bin, if larger in a drawer.  Plus, I had a binder full of stamps using a different type of sleeve. Way too many places to lose a stamp!

I've switched to the Avery Elle sleeves as you can see with the bottom pic.  Isn't it beautiful?  Dreamy sigh.  So neatly organized.  Swoon.  I had seen Jennifer McGuire's video so gathered some good tips from there and have come up with a list of my process.
  • I cut the inserts out of inexpensive white cardstock at 5-3/8 x 7-1/4".
  • I prepared my labels using Avery 5267 1/2 x 1-3/4" return address labels.
    • I don't know that I'll use these for this purpose in the future but since I was doing so many at once, it was the fastest way.
    • I use these labels for a couple of other purposes too--as identifiers on the backs of my cards with my name and blog address as well as color coding for my stamp pads (see pic 2 Distress Inks).
  • Many of my sets fit right in.  For those that didn't, I either put them on a different size sheet of plastic (transparency film) or simply cut apart the existing sheet.
  • If I had the matching dies or a mask, I went ahead and put those in the same sleeve on the backside.
  • For small sets, I would combine them by manufacturer in the same sleeve.
  • I alphabetized the sleeves by manufacturer.  I also created sections just for backgrounds, Halloween and Christmas.
  • I cut chipboard at 5-3/8 x 7-3/4" to act as dividers.
  • I then made divider labels for the manufacturers I either use most or had the most of.  Remember that old timey label maker you bought because it's so retro cool from childhood but it's been gathering dust since?  Yup.  I know.  Makes the best labels for this.  I did use Scor Tape to adhere the labels since the adhesive they come with isn't very strong.
  • These sleeves fit perfectly in the containers I already had which I got from my local Freddy's for ~$4.  They're called Homz modular stacking system and are 16.25 x 7 x 6.125".  They do come with lids which I've placed beneath each container where they act like sliders.  Really easy to pull a bin partially out and slide it right back.
So there you have it.  And now that this reorg project is done, I can clean up the desk surface a bit and get back to actual card making.  I'd like to say my desk is almost never like you see it in picture 2 but that would be such a lie.  :-)

Woodsy notecard

I really went wild with layers and embellishments with this card . . . for me, anyway.  I rediscovered these papers in my stash and felt really drawn to them. The paper does most of the work; I just added a scattering of tiny red flowers with gold centers to tie in that sturdy strap material.  Bonus--got to destash a whopping 5 brads and 2 feet of thread!  LOL.  Have any bird watches in your life?  I have a surprising lot once I started thinking about it.

The Details: DCWV Green Stack, PTI brown cardstock base, mystery ribbon, Viva Pearl Pen in Sunny (flowers centers), Hero Arts Tiny Backgrounds, Spellbinders dies, mystery brads from my kid sis

I'm entering this in Simon Says Anything Goes, The Male Room #22 Wood, Crafter's Cafe #88 Things with Wings, Crafty Cardmakers & More #126 Cut it Out

Sunday, October 26, 2014

Home for the Holidays

Ah, my first Christmas card of the season.  This one was inspired by CASology Home as well as some challenge that I don't recall now where you were to create a holiday card for someone special.  I intend to send this to my sister at the holidays.  Back when my mom was with us, we would all gather at her house for the holidays.  Now we're lucky to see each other every year or so and haven't spent the holidays with each other in way too long. I miss all of my siblings but especially at the holidays.

The card was super easy to work up.  I taped down the stencil, blocking off the bottom half of the houses.  I then sponged them using Distress Ink.  I really like all the detail the stencil provides.  Next I stamped the sentiment; I thought about using red or perhaps a gold ink but classic black won out.  Finally I used a stencil and embossing paste for the snow.

The Details:  Distress Ink Festive Berries and Mowed Lawn, Recollections white 110 lb cardstock, Ranger Claudine Hellmuth Studio Our Town stencil, PTI Mixed Messages sentiment, Simon Says Falling Snow stencil, Dreamweaver Embossing Paste, Memento Tuxedo Black

I'm entering this in CASology #118 Home, CAS on Sunday #45 OLC, Christmas Card Challenge #48 Anything Goes, Addicted to Stamps & More #118 Holiday

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Happy Feet

My order of Mama Elephant and Simon Says holiday goodies arrived and I finished up the first of many cards, I'm sure.  I took my inspiration from the current CAS(E) This Sketch, just under the wire too.  I really like the layout so may Christmasify this design on a future card by adding some of the winter hats included in the set and changing out the sentiment.  Cute!!!

I first diecut the ME stitched border die for a hill then I stamped the penguins willy nilly.  The last one reminds me of when penguins launch themselves down a hill straight into the water.  To die for cute!  (get it--to "die" for, ba bum bum)    Next was the sentiment followed by texture paste snow.  While the stencil was still in place I added glitter to the flakes.  While that was drying I used Scor Tape on the card base and burnished glitter onto it for blingy snow.  You guessed, I mounted the scene on foam tape on top of that.  Voila!

The Details:  Mama Elephant Jolly & Merry sentiment, Arctic Penguins and stitched curves border dies, Simon Says Falling Snow embossing folder, Doodlebug Design Sugar Coating Lily White Glitter (my absolute fav), and Versafine Onyx Black

I'm entering this in CAS(E) This Sketch! #96, Fab 'n' Funky #234 In Stitches Let's Have a Laugh, The Paper Players #218 CAS
Edited 23 Oct 2014:  Took a new picture at the office with better light after I had colored the beaks and feets.

Monday, October 20, 2014

Stylized Ladybugs

I love the stylized ladybugs of this set so let them speak for themselves.  I added embossed dots to the white space to mirror the dots on the buggies and triple stamped the sentiment, which mirrors the 3 images as well as the gradation of color.  

Aside:  Anyone have any suggestions for a white pigment ink pad?  I've been using Colorbox but the pad is very shallow relative to the base it sits on so I'm constantly getting fingertip inky.  I'm so over it.

The Details:  PTI white cardstock, Pop Tone Black Licorice cardstock, Dreamweaver embossing paste, Heidi Swapp stencil, Inkadinkado Thank You Words, Inkadinkado Mindscapes, Memento Tuxedo Black, Color Box white pigment ink, Scotch foam tape

I'm entering this in Paper Players #218 CAS (without gold or silver option), Allsorts #281 Embossing, Less is More #194 Little Creatures    

Sunday, October 19, 2014

Enjoy Your Day

Man, this one took me forevah because of the layers--What color(s) should I use?  Is the layout too boring?  OMG, there's way too much happening.  There's not enough happening.  Augh!

At least I had no doubts about making the background.  I used a Penny Black background stamp and white pigment ink to create a subtle meadow.  I wanted flowers but not FLOWERS.  I colored the daisies with Distress Inks.  The blue flower background was created with a combo of Tumbled Glass DI and white pigment ink for faux clouds.

The Details:  Distress Inks, watercolor paper, Esse brown cardstock, Stampendous image, Lil' Inker sentiment, Penny Black Floral Tapestry background stamp, Colorbox white pigment ink, Memento Rich Cocoa, MFT stitched rectangle die, Pop Tone Sno Cone cardstock

I'm entering this in The Card Concept #21 Country & Sunflowers (clean and layered), Addicted to Stamps & More #117 Make Your Mark, Paperminutes #343 Layering, Paper Players #218 CAS (without gold or silver option)   

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Must give up crafting

Totally not going to happen but only way I could grow out my nails enough for this.   Maybe I will jump on the foxy bandwagon--wait!   Didn't I pick up a Lawn Fawn Xmas set with a fox?!   Oh, yeah!  I saw this on Pinterest with the original here.   Maybe I will play with that over the weekend!

Little Black Card

I am so digging the oranges and yellows of the season, aren't you?  My dahlias and susans are still going strong except for one which was never lively anyway, poor thing.  I wanted to do something a bit different than what I've seen out in blogland with similarly placed flowers so I used the sentiment and enamel dots to create "fabric."  I would totally wear this.  Can't you picture it as a dress (think Grace Kelly) with bold black accessories?  Love!

  1. Stamped the flowers with Versamark then embossed with white
  2. Watercolored the flowers using Distress Inks
  3. Curved the sentiment on my block then stamped a few times
  4. Added tiny black dots of Enamel Accents

The Details:  Black Enamel Accents, Avery Elle So Happy sentiment, Stampendous Zinnia, Tim Holtz Watercolor Paper, Distress Inks, Stampendous Detail Fine White Embossing Powder, Recollections black 110 lb cardstock, Versamark

I'm entering this in Keep It Simple #50 Three, Top Tip Tuesday Fav Color Combo, CAS on Sunday #44 Emboss It, Simon Says Wednesday Use Watercolors, AAA Cards #24 Autumn Colors, Virginia's View #8 CAS

Sunday, October 12, 2014

Halloween Card for Grown Ups

This card resulted from a failed experiment.  I had the brilliant idea of cutting out a spiderweb from a sheet of Scor Tape using my Cameo.  That part was easy.  Taking just the spiderweb outline off from the cutting mat--lord, you would not believe the amount of cursing going in this place.  I finally gave up on that but did manage to save most of the rest of the sticky web.  I placed it on cardstock and brushed on Pearl Ex to de-sticky the Scor Tape.  It turned out fab.  I cut out the spider from holographic glitter paper using the Cameo and then added the sentiment in embossed black for contrast.   Btw, the web extends to the back as does the chalkboard effect with the Pearl Ex

The Details:  Recollections glitter paper, black 110 lb cardstock, and sentiment, spider & spider web from my Cameo, Pearl Ex in Micropearl, Versamark, Stampendous Detail Fine Black embossing powder

I'm entering this in Less is More #193 One Layer Card, Without Words "Boo!", Crazy for CAS #55 One Layer Stamped Card, CAS on Sunday #44 Emboss It

Update 10/13/14:  I hadn't realized that LIM was a OLC featuring two of something so I'm withdrawing it.  Oops!

Friday, October 10, 2014


This year I volunteered to decorate for the office Halloween party.  So fun!  This meant:
  1. I needed to stretch party dollars (used mainly old paper from my stash and kept the purchased items on the cheap)
  2. The design must appeal to the majority (I hope so!)
  3. Ideally reusable (it will last longer than I will!)
I used my Cameo to create the letters (Ravie font), bats, cats, witches, dripping blood circles and banner base.  The yellow circles I cut with my whatchathing manually.  I stuck everything together for each letter section then we laminated them at the office for longevity.  I used my Crop-a-dile to punch holes in the corners for stringing ribbon.  We also laminated a couple of foam bats (for added stability) to use as connector pieces.  More foam bats will be flying around the banner and hanging from the ceiling.

I also made a garland using orange and black circles sewed together randomly.  These will hang as a curtain.

(Please do excuse the pics.  I took them at the office under horrible lighting conditions with my phone.)

The Details:  yellow and orange papers from stash, Recollections 110 lb black cardstock, Paper Studio chevron 12x12 paper, Pop Tone red cardstock, Glossy Accents

I'm entering this in Creative Cutting Challenge #40 Halloween, Dream Valley #92 Anything but a Card, Addicted to Stamps & More #116 Anything Goes, Papertake Weekly Anything Goes, Simply Create Too #72 Halloween or Lots of Orange, Colour Me #41   

Thursday, October 9, 2014

Sunflower Birthday

With this card I only used part of the image to allow room for the sentiment.  Don't you love that font?  I also love that there was room to add the cute little ladybug that I've had in my stash for 10 years to the sentiment.  I'm not sure what it is but suspect Hero Arts.  For the sunflower's ladybug I colored and cut out another to layer it on for added dimension.  A little stitching (as done by my son-in-law's girlfriend who had never sewn before--go, Julie!) added the final dimensional layer.

Btw, do you see the linen/burlap texture of the watercolor paper?  I hated this paper the first few times I used it because it sucked up more color than I was used to than the Tim Holtz but it's growing on me.  I think it lends itself really well to nature cards.

The Details:  Strathmore 110 lb watercolor paper, Distress Inks, Glossy Accents, Avery Elle So Happy sentiment, Martha Stewart corner rounder, Spectrum Noir, mystery ladybug stamp, Stampendous Sunflower stamp, mystery green cardstock base (from Impress)

I'm entering this in Virginia's View #8 CAS, AAA Cards #23 Watercolors, Allsorts #279 Autumn, Less is More #192 Autumn Shades, Shopping Our Stash #172 Autumn Colors  

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Look! Up in the Sky, It's a . . . Monkey?

I managed to squeeze in one last diecut from my watercolor panel.  Of course, I still had rainbows on the brain so made a whimsical card with a floating monkey.  A floating monkey.  Can the world get any more topsy turvy?

I drew in the balloon strings prior to embossing then attached the sentiment and monkey.  Reminds me of a parade balloon (where a monkey would not be out of place, thank you very  much!).  In retrospect, I do wish I had tried hanging the monkey from his tail

The Details:  Lawn Fawn Thanks die, Mama Elephant Up & Away stamp, Sakura 01 black ink pen, Paper Studio clouds embossing folder, Recollections white 110 lb cardstock, Distress Inks, Glossy Accents, Spectrum Noirs, mystery card base from stash, Gansai Tambi watercolors

I'm entering this in AAA Cards #23 Watercolors, Virginia's View #8 CAS, Simon Says Wednesday Watercolors, Addicted to Stamps & More #116 Anything Goes

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Spooky Graveyard

This card all started with the wonky tree.  I had cut the tree out for a different card ages ago, left it on my cutting area and inadvertently chopped off part of the limbs when I was cutting something else.  Oh, yes, that's me all over.  Well, I couldn't throw out a perfectly goodish tree, could I?  So, into the "someday" pile it went and yesterday was someday.

For the background I sponged yellow then masked off a circle.  I next applied a medium blue and then a dark blue, leaving a halo of the lighter to make it seem like the moon is glowing.  I used DI Picked Raspberry just along the edges to deepen the sky into purple.  I added pigment ink stars randomly before gluing on the wonky tree and mounting the graveyard on foam tape.  You can't tell much from the pic but the tree and bat are only partially attached to the card so they stick out.  It's a really cool effect in person.

The Details:  Spellbinders graveyard die, bat from my Cameo, Impression Obsession tree die, Memento Dandelion, Danube Blue, Distress Inks Picked Raspberry, Chipped Sapphire, Recollections black and white 110 lb cardstock, PTI yellow cardstock (base), Recollections sentiment inside

I'm entering this in Fab 'n' Funky #231 Halloween, Paper Players #216 Halloween, Crafter's Cafe #84 Punches or Diecuts

Monday, October 6, 2014

Thank You with Apples!

Time for another fab challenge over at House of Cards!  This time you just need to use a die or a punch.  Can it be any easier than that?  I don't thinnnnnk so!  Also, be sure to check out Minn's tutorial.  I love, love, love her card--look how she created the pumpkins out of circles and ovals.  Super genius!

With my card I use two different dies--one die to cut out the square and another to create an impression of the tree.  Cool, huh?

The Details:  Spectrum Noirs EB2, EB3, CR3, CR7, DR3, CG2, DG3, PTI Mighty Oak Die, Jillibean Fresh Vegetable Soup sentiment, Recollections white 110 lb cardstock, Neenah Solar White 80 lb, Versamark, Stampendous Detail Black embossing powder, Deep Red apple stamp

Edited to add:  My Favorite Things Stitched Square die, Sakura white pigment pen

I'm entering this in Time Out 15 Stamping with Optional Twist of Apples,   Crafter's Cafe 84 Punches or Diecuts, and Virginia's View #8 CAS