Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Merry Monday Christmas Challenge: Birthday Hop

The folks at Merry Monday Christmas Challenge are doing a birthday hop this week!  This may not make much sense until I tell you that the hop is for the wonderful LeAnne Pugliese.  I love LeAnne's blog.  Besides her amazing talent and fabulous cards, if you have followed her for any length of time, you have gotten to see Cassidy grow up!  Little Cassidy has a fabulous smile and never fails to make me smile back when I see her on my screen.  Happy Birthday LeAnne!

Birthday Banner

Also for my card, I am using the colors at Fab Friday (mainly because I wanted to use my brand new sequins(!) from Stampin' Up and the challenge has two of the sequin colors!)

And I used the sketch from clean & simple (mainly because I have to use some new Mama Elephant dies - the banner - per my discussion just a couple of posts ago about the cost of stamps and coordinating dies!)

  • Stamps: Mama Elephant Soiree (the banner), My Favorite Things Birthday Greetings (sentiment)
  • Paper: Stampin' Up Daffodil Delight, Strawberry Slush
  • Ink: Stampin' Up Daffodil Delight, Strawberry Slush, Coastal Cabana
  • Accessories: Mama Elephant Soiree dies, My Favorite Things Blueprints 13 (the stitching), Stampin' Up Sequins (and one yellow sequin from Pretty Pink Posh)

Sunday, July 27, 2014

Happy Birthday to My Husband!!

Happy Birthday to my husband!!

You Were Born

  • Stamps: Neat and Tangled A Long Time Ago Time Warp
  • Paper: Stampin' Up Midnight Muse
  • Ink: Versamark, white
  • Accessories: Wow Brilliant White Embossing, Pretty Pink Posh sequins, Lifestyle Crafts embossing folder.

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Oh Happy Day with Mama Elephant

I have a love/hate relationship with dies that coordinate with stamp sets.  On the one hand, don't they make our lives easier?  Our cards look so crisp and professional, and die-cut images give so much dimension.  On the other hand, every stamp purchase has to be considered carefully because of the cost of the coordinating dies.  Of course, I couldn't possibly get a new stamp set without those coordinating dies.  And when a company goes back and adds to dies to previously released stamps sets - I'm in real trouble.

Mama Elephant did that to me recently with a soft release.  They released three die sets to go with older stamp sets and I had TWO of those stamps sets.  Plus, I had never purchased dies from a few months ago that go with their Panda set.  Their dies aren't cheap - because they have a die for virtually everything in the set.  So I placed a big order, but it was all coordinating die sets! Long story short - you'll be seeing some Mama Elephant on my blog for awhile because it's hard enough to justify the cost of a stamp set, let alone the cost of the dies too!!  Here's the first...

Oh Happy Day

Just one of their charming pandas and a little sparkle on his balloon!!  It definitely makes me happy!

Oh Happy Day close

  • Stamps: Mama Elephant Pandamonium, Bountiful Blessings
  • Paper: Stampin' Up Coastal Cabana
  • Ink: Memento Black and Copics
  • Accessories: Mama Elephant Pandamonium dies, Femme Frames die, Landscape Trio dies, Pretty Pink Posh sequins

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Catered Crop: Vellum Two Ways

It's time for a new challenge at Catered Crop.  We are challenged to use vellum.  I have to admit to having to dig for my vellum stash even though it seems to be on trend right now.  Every once in awhile, I'll pull it out for a sentiment strip or banner.  It's not usually planned, rather I get a card almost done and realize that regular cardstock would hide too much, so I pull out the vellum.  For today's cards, I wanted to feature it a bit more.  I did do two cards.  The first was a bit of an accident - the second idea came to me while I was struggling with the first!

I was working on an idea for the current Sweet Sunday Sketch with no thought of vellum in my mind.  But I realized how soft and feminine the card was and thought that sheer vellum would be a great touch and it would also allow more of the patterned paper to show.  I love the way vellum looks when it is embossed - the embossed area turns whiter and really shows the pattern.  (I did have to add a piece of cardstock with the vellum in the folder to keep the vellum from cracking.)

You Are Loved

I also used vellum for the butterfly.

You Are Loved close

While I was working on this card, I was thinking about how interesting it would be to die cut a shape from a large piece of vellum.  I remembered the Heart Die set from Sweet 'n Sassy Stamps that I had never cut apart simply so I could do this...

Sending Love

Vellum really is a useful tool and a different look.  It can be useful to add a sentiment when you don't want to totally hide the image or the paper.  It has a very different look when embossed. It can be very soft and feminine but you can see that I also did a masculine card with it.  You can color on the backside of your image for a great look.  There's a lot out there about coloring - Jennifer McGuire just did a video on it.  Linda curated a Pinterest board with lots of sample cards using vellum.

You have until 8 p.m. EST on Saturday, August 2 to create with vellum and link up at Catered Crop.  Hope to see you playing along!

You Are Loved
  • Stamps: Simon Says Stamp You, Stampin' Up Papillon Potpourri
  • Paper: My Favorite Things Bubblegum, Papertrey Ink Berry Sorbet and Aqua Mist, We R Memory Keepers 6x6 Chalkboard pad, scraps of vellum
  • Ink: Versamark
  • Accessories: Martha Stewart Die-Cut Lace Tags, Simon Says You Die, Stampin' Up Butterfly Punch and Bitty Banners die, Wow! Super Fine Bright White Embossing Powder, Webster's Pages Party Time mixed sequins
Sending Love
  • Stamps: Clearly Besotted Sweet Little Sentiments
  • Paper: Kraft, misc vellum, MME Blink of an Eye 6x6 pad
  • Ink: Versamark
  • Accessories: Sweet 'n Sassy Stamps Heart Die set, Wow! Super Fine Bright White Embossing Powder, Papertrey Ink Summer Sunshine button, MFT Blueprints 13 (the stitching around the edge of the vellum), Hemptique 10-lb white twine

Monday, July 21, 2014

Curtain Call: A Reminder of Great Prizes

I wanted to get another card in to remind you of the great prizes available for the first anniversary challenge at the Curtain Call Inspiration Challenge.  There are fifteen prizes available!!  The challenge is open until the 25th at 8 a.m. CDT and winners will be announced on July 31st.

My second card looks quite a bit like my first card for this challenge - you can tell that I was inspired by the "squares" and the colors.


I love the look of fading colors with stencils.  I was thrilled when I saw this checkerboard stencil in my collection.  Then I was noticing the swirly word dies from Clearly Besotted Stamps and thought the curves and swirls would be a nice counterpoint to the squares on the checkerboard. I actually ordered this word die (and four other words) a few weeks ago just for this challenge!  This didn't start out as a baby card; rather I wanted to congratulate Curtain Call on their first year.  When I realized that it just had to be a baby card, I added three tiny buttons and the border stitching.

Be sure to check out this challenge.  It's not often that a challenge offers fifteen prizes!  Then be sure to continue to play along.  As part of the design team, I've seen the upcoming sponsors and you definitely want to be playing along!
  • Stamps: none
  • Paper: white, My Favorite Things Bubblegum
  • Ink: Distress Inks: Tumbled Glass, Spun Sugar, Shaded Lilac
  • Accessories: Clearly Besotted Congrats die, Lil' Inkers Stitched Rectangles, My Favorite Things buttons in Grapesicle, Bubblegum and Sno Cone

Saturday, July 19, 2014

Merry Monday: Sequins

I couldn't let Merry Monday's challenge go by without playing along.  The challenge is to use sequins. Scroll through my blog - I dare you to find many cards at all without a few sequins.  I often just use three sequins to highlight a sentiment or image, but for a sequin challenge, I thought I ought to use a few more.

From Our House

It's not particularly creative to plop sequins on a wreath - but I love the look of that open wreath.  It's also a really nice mix of sequins.  It's not just the photo that makes them look different - there are three shades of green and two of red, plus the golden sequins. The picture doesn't do the embossing powder justice.  In a different light, you can see that the speckles are actually golden.

From Our House close

  • Stamps: Hero Arts wreath, Simon Says Holiday Hellos (sentiment)
  • Paper: Papertrey Ink Scarlet Jewel, Kraft, My Favorite Things Primitive White
  • Ink: Papertrey Ink Scarlet Jewel, Kraft, Versamark
  • Accessories: Stampendous Shabby White Embossing Enamel, Neat and Tangled Classic Christmas Mix sequins, My Favorite Things Fishtail dies

Friday, July 18, 2014

Freshly Made Sketches: Flower of Thanks

In my NBUS stash (Never-Before-Used-Schtuff) are the Tag Talk dies from My Favorite Things which are the current free-with-$60-purchase item.  (This should also tell you that I have even more MFT NBUS stuff!)  When I saw the current sketch at Freshly Made Sketches, it seemed like a perfect use of these tags.


If you look closely, you can see the diagonal stripe on the light blue panel.  I love diagonal stripes because they give the affect of a spotlight on your image or sentiment.  I buy paper pads for the single sheet of diagonal stripe paper in them. I am hoping to remedy these purchases with this background stamps. It's another new release at MFT and I would imagine that I will give it a lot of use - - - but time will tell because, for completely unknown reasons, background stamps always end up alone and unused in the back of my craft storage!

I did have to do the mirror-image of the sketch because of the direction of the words on the tag.

  • Stamps: My Favorite Things Diagonal Stripes Background
  • Paper: MFT Kraft, Gumdrop Green, Sour Apple, Lemon Apple, Blue Raspberry, Berrylicious
  • Ink: white
  • Accessories: MFT Tag Talk dies, Layered Leaves die, Gerbera Daisy die, Doodlebug enamel dots, Hemptique 10-lb white twine