Saturday, December 19, 2009

NOT GOING ANYWHERE SOON!

Thank goodness for sewing machines and power. I think without those to things I just might have gone stir crazy today. It started snowing about nine o'clock last night and it just stopped a few moments ago, which is 10pm, over 24 hours later.

I don't think I will be going anywhere soon. There are 21 inches of snow that must be dealt with in my driveway. And then there's the matter of uncovering my poor little car. Yes that's it in the second picture.......from what it sounds like on the news, though the snow has stopped falling things are not really improving. It's not a good idea to be out and about as the roads that have been plowed are turning into skating rinks. So other than shoveling snow tomorrow it will be another day in the house....The sewing is done for Christmas, but I do have some paper craft projects that need to be completed for gifts, wrapping of presents and maybe even another Christmas cookie batch or two.

I'd like to show you pictures of my completed sewing projects from today, but they are gifts and I would hate to give away any gift surprises!

And just think winter starts on Monday!!!!!!!

Monday, December 07, 2009

TIME PASSES BY SO QUICKLY

Time does pass by so quickly.....I can hardly believe it has been almost a month since I posted here. There is a lot going on in my life but that is not for this BLOG. I have been getting some crafting done and even some baking which is so fun and tasty as well.

After being laid off from my Lay Director job at our church I was given the opportunity to go back to one of my employment loves; working in a quilt shop. What is not to love about working with people as they choose beautiful fabrics for their next quilting project? It had been so long since I had allowed myself to handle good quality fabric that I had almost forgotten how wonderful it feels and how beautiful it looks. What fun it even makes standing on your feet for four hours straight a joy! A tiring one but a joy non the less. I have also been asked to teach a couple of classes in the first quarter of 2010. That is another thing I haven't done in a while but have always loved doing. TEACHING QUILTING! My first class in January will be Pineapple Placemats. I've taught this before and love doing so and love this pattern for placemats. It is a quilt as you go pattern which means when you are done with the placemat block you are also done with the quilting. All that is left to be done is the binding. This is my class sample. Even I had forgotten how easy these are to make. So if you live in the Gaithersburg, MD area and you would like to learn a new technique for making placemats....why not get a true head start on next years Christmas gift list....check out Capital Quilts for their January - March class list and come join me.

Now as the weather outside turns frightful my kitchen is so delightful! I have finally gotten around to making bread following the directions from a book I have had for some time....Artisan Bread in 5 Minutes a Day. Yummy and oh so easy. I was skeptical of a no-knead bread that sits in your fridge for up to 14 days till you want to bake it, but I am sold! It is wonderful in both looks and taste, and oh so easy! Most importantly for my life right now the loaf size is just right for one! This is a white flour loaf, but there is a new book out that shows you how to use the same technique using whole grains. This book is on my wish list. But for know I Am very happy with my white bread! It is very quick and very easy and even more tasty! YUM!

Thursday, November 19, 2009

NO REAL GLASS BUT SOME CRACKED GLASS

Life continues on its wild coaster ride. Twists and turns and bumps in the road. I thank God for time to spend in creative pursuits. Sometimes in the craziness of life it isall that keeps me sane.

At the moment I am spending more time in quilting pursuits than paper crafts, but that is because I have been helping out at the local quilt shop during some special events and sales they have been holding. This involve the "terrible" task of having to spend 4 hours a day looking at and touching absolutely gorgeous fabric. AND also seeing what wonderful combinations customers come up with for their projects or simply their stash.

I have a card here that I have not yet shown. It makes use of a technique I've heard about in many different forums over the past few years but I never got up the courage to try it until a recent video tutorial on GinaK's StampTV site. She made it look and sound so easy that I had to try it. The name of the technique is Cracked Glass. I think I have also heard it referred to as Cracked Ice.

I love the stamp set I used for this card. It is a retired Stampin' Up set called Illuminations. All the papers and inks I used were also SU as well as the Ribbon and hardware. The backgound die cut was made with SU's Top Notes die and the oval is from one of my Nestabilities sets.

I like the way the card tuned out but I do have to say though this is not a particularly difficult technique it can get messy if you are not careful with embossing powder going every where and even can be painful if you are once again not careful with the melted embossing powder before it cools. Please don't ask me to wxplain how I know these things...........

Monday, November 16, 2009

CRAFT FESTIVAL


Lots of pictures in this post and little to say. It's late and past the time when I should be in bed, but I thought I would just pop in with a few pictures of my booth at our church craft festival a few weeks ago. Yes I made it all and yes I am a tad obsessed when it comes to crafting. I love creating things and sharing them with others. If I could afford to I would give things away rather than sell them. As it is I mainly recover the cost of my materials and then add a little for my time. Profit is not really a word that works with crafting at my level. I am a crafter not an artist. If I was an artist people might clamor for my items and I could make a fortune. oh wait the phrase is "Starving artists" not "Starving crafter". I guess I do okay after all........oh well what ever....enjoy!

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

A CARD AND LOTS OF WORK TO DO!

A quick card to show so that you all don't think I am slacking.....I embossed the Upsie Daisy large image from Stampin' Up on some designer paper. I don't like black embossing powder because no matter how hard I try I get tiny black specks so instead I use Stampin' Ups black craft ink and clear embossing powder when I want a black embossed image. I wanted the butterfly to fly across the flowers but didn't want to "fussy cut" it so instead I punched it out in a circle and popped it up on a dimensional.

So that is my card. I have to confess it is one I made some time ago. I have been so busy with the preparations for the craft show and now special orders that I haven't had the time to process any of my current photos to upload here. Success does come with a price....but don't get me wrong I am happy to pay the price of business creating. So far I have completed two sets of 8 Christmas cards each and 25 various special cards. I have orders for 6 altered composition notebook journals, 10 more cards and a fall themed table runner. Plus I need to finish 2 sets of place mats, 2 table runners and 4 sets of pot holders to be taken to the museum gift shop by the end of next week.

I asked God for a sign as to whether I should work toward formalizing my craft business and get serious about marketing my work.....I'm thinking I may have received an answer. What do you think?

Saturday, November 07, 2009

CRAFT FESTIVAL DAY

It's the day of the Arts & Craft Festival at church. I am a vendor at it and am looking forward to being part of this fun event. It is a day I can combine two of my passions....creating paper crafts and fabric items including small quilts AND my church.

This is a special day for me as well since I am considering it the day I begin my craft business in earnest. I have sold my items on a limited basis for years through several craft shows and boutiques a year. I also have a few items at the Sandy Spring Museum year round and when asked I have done a few special order items. Now I have more time to devote to my passion of creating I am looking to taking on more special orders and maybe even having an Internet presence on E-Bay or Etsy, Probably it will be Etsy. So today is a big day in many ways. I also hope to be having a more regular entry here.

All that said I need to be heading out to the Festival. Bye for now.

Edited: Just an update to say the show went well considering the state of the economy. It wasn't heavily attended but those that did come found some wonderfully priced Christmas presents. All the vendors I talked with seemed happy with their sales and I know that not only did I make some much needed money, but I found some Christmas gifts so I declare my Holiday buying season officially opened!

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

What have I been up to lately..........?????? You know I don't even have clue!

My life has been in such a state of turmoil I just seem to be moving from moment to moment. I have been laid off from the main part of my job at our church. Also my dear husband has been working out of town for the past three weeks.....There seems to be no order or organization to my life and though I am a "go with the flow" type of gal I do need some structure to keep me on task! So chaos has been rampant!

I do need money to support my paper crafting as well as quilting habit so I should be preparing for a craft show next week end. I have managed to get a few things done and this is one of them. Some little mini composition notebooks which I altered.


Tomorrow is a new day and I hope to be able to get myself back on task. I need sets of Christmas cards made and I need to get down to my sewing studio. In one week I have a major craft show. Anyone have any clues on how to stay focused when life is a total disoriented mess?????????

Friday, October 09, 2009

1 YEAR BUT COMPLETED!

It took a year but they are done and they are sooooooooooo comfortable. Bring on the winter I am ready!

Saturday, September 26, 2009

NEW VENTURE INTO DIGI SCRAPBOOKING!

video

I just received my copy of My Digital Studio from Stampin' Up last week. I am in love! It is so easy to use. I have been wanting to get into digi scrapbooking for some time now. I've been trying to learn it using Adobe's PhotoShop Elements software and have not been getting anywhere fast. This was amazingly easy. Most of the album uses premade layouts but I did do about four of the pages from scratch! I next want to learn how to use other papers and embellishments I have on my computer that are not actually part of this program. Until I learn how to that there is plenty to use in the program including lots of stamped images. You really do get a lot for the $80 price tag. And you can do cards and calendars as well. Plus some multimedia stuff as well I think. This program will be available on October 1. It sure is a lot less messy of a way to scrapbook; though I still plan to do the real things.

I've also printed out the pages for this album. At least from my canon printer even on brochure paper which is almost a card stock weight, but not quite, it still looks like a printed page. Not as much visual dimension as I had been hearing people say there was. Maybe they have better printers or they had them professionally printed.

I'm not giving up on learning PhotoShop Elements yet, but at least I can do some projects for immediate gratification while learning it.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

BACK TO CARDS

Here are some projects I made after watching a video tutorial made by the fabulous GinaK on creating backgrounds using embossing folders and inking them. The video is called Inking a Cuttlebug Folder. I love these videos which she posts weekly on StampTV, but then I think I've said that before.

I created two cards using this technique. Both of the cards I made the backgrounds use chalk inks on the embossing folder. The fish card I tried to get fancy by using several different colors on the folder to give the illusion of an underwater setting. It turned out pretty bold. The background for the butterfly uses only one color and turned out much more subtle. Both the fish and the Butterfly are from GinaK's Eclectic Summer stamp set. Both the embossing folders I used where from Provocraft and I used them with my Cuttlebug machine. The inks wash off easily from the folders as they are completely plastic. This is definitely a technique that I will try again. It really makes the embossing show; though I need to say that it really is the debossed areas here that are inked.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

SOMETHING A LITTLE DIFFERENT!

I've thought about this interesting challenge. It is to read 10 books between now and the end of the year. I love to read and don't allow myself time to do as much of it as I would like. There is so much else to do. I found out about the challenge from another BLOGGING, stamping, stitching and in general all around Internet friend LadyDoc. She posted it on her BLOG Tilting at Windmills, and she asked if anyone would care to join her? My response was: 10 books by the end of the year??? That would be not too much more than a book a week. There are only 15 weeks left in the year! But I also indicated I would look into it.

Well it turns out this challenge was started by a stitcher and listening to audio books counts. Ah, I like that! 1--I listen to audio books while I drive so I can count those. 2--I can kill two birds with one stone by listening to books while I stamp, quilt, knit, exercise or even clean house (well if I did much house work these days). Not that I would only listen to books. I would read at least half of them. But being able to listen as well as read does take some of the pressure off. I love to read but I am not a speed reader by any means! I like to enjoy a good read and that means taking the time to savor it! So Lady Doc I will take you up on this challenge. I don't have a complete list of what I will read or listen to having just found out about this challenge 30 minutes ago, but there are a few books sitting by my chair that I have been meaning to read and one n my car waiting to be listened to so here is the start of my list. I will finish it by tomorrow night.

1) Dragon Fly in Amber by Diane Gabaldon audio
2) The Friday Night Knitting Club by Kate Jacobs
3) Handle With Care by Jodi Picoult
4) Animal, Vegetable, Miracle by Barbara Kingsolver
5) Tales of the Beedle Bard by J K Rowling
6) This I Believe edited by Jay Allison and Dan Gediman
7) I'm Not Wonder Woman But God Made Me Wonderful by Shelia Walsh
8) The Magician's Wife by Brian Moore
9) Waltzing at the Piggly Wiggly by Robert Dalby
10) 12 Extraordinary Women by John MacArthur

this list may change as time goes on but these are the books sitting by my chair at the moment anyway............

So that's the start of my list. More to come tomorrow along with a card that I worked on today.

Sunday, September 13, 2009

INSIDE OUT!

We had a very special 50th Birthday Party to attend last month. It was for two of our dear friends. A couple whose birthdays are withing weeks of each other so they always celebrate milestone birthdays together. Yes, 50 is a milestone!

I know that 50th Birthdays are often "Over the Hill" birthdays. The colors for decorations are often Black and white. I can do black and white. I love that combination, but this is a couple with spice in their lives so there needed to be a dash of red added in to liven things up. If there is a color combo I like better than black and white its black, white AND red!

I've been seeing a lot of cards lately with elements that peak though the front from the inside of the card and I've been wanting to try one and decided this was the card to do it on. A lot of the cards I've been seeing use a frame around the hole where the element shows through and this is what I chose to do.

Here is the front of the card. The papers and card stock are all Stampin' Up. The small circle punched out and scalloped frame around it in the upper left corner were done using SU punches. The larger punched circle and scalloped frame in the bottom right were made using Marvy punches. The stamps I used where from unknown sources. I simply know they aren't SU because they were acrylic stamps. The black brads are from SU and the black organdy ribbon is some I have left from a SU spool that is now retired.

Here is the inside of my card. It shows the black circles with the sentiments that show through to the front. Also you can see the black scalloped border that I added for interest on the inside. This border was made using SU's scalloped border punch.

It was a fun card but I had to be careful to design it so that the peak through holes were placed in a location that could be reached by my punches. I could have used my circle Nestibilities I suppose and then I wouldn't have had to worry about this placement but I didn't so I did........

So long till the next posting which may not be for a few days since the next few days and nights are pretty well packed with outside the home commitments!

Saturday, September 12, 2009

LAST OF ALASKA STAMPS

My moose! This is the last of the three stamps I purchased in Alaska. I didn't color this one in as I need to find ways to use the stamps that don't take me 5 hours or more to do. They won't get used much if I stick to that method.

Gina K did a technique video called Smackin' Acetate and I tried to use that technique for my background. It's on her social network site Stampin' TV. I think I need a bit more work on this technique. Her background is so soft and smooth mine is rather jagged. Though the white in the sky area does look a bit like clouds.

It's a fun technique to try. It can get a bit messy if your are not careful but don't let that scare you off. I will be working some more with it.

Gina has a long list of technique videos she has made. So many things to try and so little time!

Wednesday, September 09, 2009

TIME FOR A DIFFERENT STYLE

Once again I have need for sympathy cards. I think there must be something connected here with the age I and my peers have entered into...........So far at least most of the cards have been for parents of friends and not friends themselves. I guess that will be the next stage.

But enough of that talk. This card makes heavy use of white and gold with just a touch of black as the layer between the two brushed gold scalloped rectangles. I used my Scor Pal to emboss the lines a little over halfway down the front of the card stock. Using the ribbon helps hide the slightly uneven ends of the score lines.

The ribbon is a piece from my stash. No idea where from??? All the card stock is Stampin' Up. I especially love their brushed gold card stock. The inks and Gold Embossing Powder is also from SU. The stamps used are from Papertrey. I can't right at the moment remember the name of the set.

For as easy as this card was to make I really like the way it turned out.

I just checked on Papertrey's site. The stamp set used is Everyday Blessings.

Monday, September 07, 2009

MORE ALASKA STAMPS

Several months ago I posted some cards I had made with a stamp I purchased in Alaska. It was a Hummingbird stamp that has Native Alaskan artwork in it. You can see those cards here if you missed them and would like to see them. I had purchased three stamps from the same company Earth Art International. They are part of their Animal Spirit Stamp line.


I really like coloring in these images but it is very, very time consuming and I must be in the right frame of mind when I do so because it is very detailed coloring. Here are two more cards. This time using the Bear image.

These are quite large stamps so I am really challenged on how to use them on cards. But I do love them and hope to find many ways to use them both colored and mono tone. So far I have been trying to use color schemes that are found in traditional Native Alaskan art. These include primarily red, black, white and turquoise.

The third stamp that I have is a moose. Soon I will show some pictures of it. I do have some cards completed just need to edit them.

Sunday, September 06, 2009

ANOTHER TAKE ON SAME ELEMENTS

So I am the first to admit that I get bored easily! I cut out all the elements for my SheetLoad of cards....see previous post...but I got interrupted by other life events before I got all eight cards done. When I had time yesterday morning to get back into my stamp room I needed to do something more creative than just make the same cards I had been working on days ago. I also wanted to do the GinaK challenge to use stitching on a card. But I couldn't just put aside into a UFO (UnFinished Object) pile the remaining pieces for my SheetLoad Cards. (I know myself well enough to know the likely hood of my going back and finishing these particular cards was pretty small. Have I ever told you all I get bored easily!) So I decided to challenge my self to use these pre-cut card elements and create a new card. This would not be boring and I would not set aside or waste the elements I had already prepared. I also would use stitching on the card so I would have my GinaK challenge card!

The result of my playing around is on the left. I eliminated some of the rectangles and added three paper flowers and brads. I do not like the stitching by had however. I like the look just not the time it took! Did I ever say I get bored easily and also am impatient...........?

I have a few more of the element sets cut out I will play around with them as well and see what else I can come up with. But that will be another post!

Sunday, August 30, 2009

Shout Out to SheetLoad

It's been a while since I have stamped and made any cards. Not sure what is up with me but I just got out of the groove and have been dealing with too many other things. BUT I missed my creativity and stamping mojo. How to get it back was the question I faced!

I have several sites that I visit when I need an inspiration boost. One of my favorite is SheetLoad of Cards. They put out a wonderful E-Zine monthly. Not only is it full of inspiration but the really break down how to make their featured card layout giving you measurements and supply lists and everything! Can it get any better when you are in a stamping slump????? I don't think so.

So SheetLoad is where I headed. Each month's E-Zine has a sponsor and it certainly helped inspire me even more when I found that the August SheetLoad E-Zine was sponsored by Sweet & Sassy another of my favorite companies. So it was a twofer inspiration hit!

Now I know that August is almost over, but all monthly E-Zines are archived and they are timeless. So you can refer to them throughout the year. And since it's almost September that means in a few days I'll get even more inspiration!

So what did I do with the inspiration I received from SheetLoad today. Why I made a card of course! I even went out on my own and made a few adjustments to there design which is just fine and in fact is encouraged! The card layout they did was for a square card and I just don't do square cards because I don't have square envelopes. So I played around a bit....see my mojo was returning...and came up with a rectangular card that is the same as their square one.

My other little added touches were using my Cuttlebug embossing folder tho emboss the background and layering my designer paper rectangles. Here's my card. (The Scalloped oval color did not scan well IRL it is much redder rather than the purple it shows up here And the oval is Shara Sand which is much browner than the blue it looks here.) I finally used some of my new Stampin' Up In Color card stock and I love it. I used Crushed Curry and Soft Suede. The third card stock color I used is Purely Pomegranate, a retired In Color. The Designer Papers are also from SU and are scraps I had left over from other projects. The ribbon is Purely Pomegranate double stitch ribbon and I used various SU and Marvey punches as well as my rectangle Nestabilities to punch out my shapes.

A wonderful side benefit of going to SheetLoad for my inspiration is I now have the pieces for 7 more cards cut and ready to assemble. I will do so using different sentiments so I have a selection of cards to use for almost any occasion. So if you have never been to the SheetLoad site why not do so now. You to may find wonderful inspiration there whether you want to make one card or multiples. They have the ideas.

August E-zine

SheetLoad main site.

I hope that now I have broken the ice and gotten back into my stamp room that I will be present here in the future more than I have been recently. See you soon!

Sunday, July 05, 2009

BACK TO STAMPING!

It was so nice to get back into the stamping room today. Doubly nice because not only did I stamp and create three cards, but I also did some cleaning and putting away of stuff that had been sitting out too long and the cards I made used images that I had stamped several weeks ago. (I don't know about you but for me it feels so good to finish up started projects!)

The images I had stamped were made using a stamp that I purchased on our trip to Alaska in May. I actually got three stamps but have only used this one so far. It is a hummingbird image filled in with symbols and designs used by Native American groups. I fell in over with their designs which were found all over Alaska on our journey. I also have a bear and a moose, filled in with designs in the same fashion as the hummingbird.

These stamps are from a line of stamps called Animal Spirit Stamps and they are put out by Earth Art International. The original artwork for these stamps was done by a Washington artist names Sue Coccia.

The first card I made is a very simple card that makes use of colors that are often found in the Native American artwork in Alaska: reds, black and turquoise. This is a very detailed stamp but it stamps wonderfully and clearly.




The second card still makes use of the image being stamped in black in a solid colored card stock but I moved away from using the traditional colors and pulled out my Nestabillities to add an addition point of interest on the card. One of the challenges of using these stamps for card making is that the stamps are rather large. So for this second card I cut out the hummingbird and placed it off center agianst a circle of lighter card stock. This is mounted on a scalloped circle that has been pierced in each scallop and all is then placed on a rectangle of designer paper. To me it almost looks as if the hummingbird is flying in front of the moon. I added the ribbon on the bottom to balance out the card.

It doesn't show in the pictures of the first to cards but on both of them I placed a tiny yellow Stickles dot for some sparkle on the eye.




My final card what the most fun but also the most work to make. For this card I stamped the image using Memento Tuxedo Black ink on white card stock and very carefully colored it in using my copic markers. I say carefully because the spaces to be colored where very, very tiny! Fortunately I have a good selection of the original Copics which have a fine tip nib. I took awhile (about 90 minutes) to color in the whole hummingbird. I don't think I will regularly be coloring in these images but I really do like the look of it. When the inner child needs to come out and color in a detailed way I will consider doing so again. As detailed as the coloring is the card needed something more and the brads worked well to balance out the "get well" sentiment. (The sentiment by the way is from Stamping Up's new set Teeny Tiny Wishes. I'm pretty sure this is a set I will pull out often. I also used it for the "Happy Birthday on the first card.)

So the above is the result of my day of stamping. I have lots of new sets to lay with and hopefully will get a few more things done tomorrow. Until then be good and have fun with life!

Saturday, July 04, 2009

THE FINAL RESULT

The mystery has been solved. I am somewhat amazed that I finished it. It has been a very, very long time since I have finished a quilt project. Well, it's not totally finished since I haven't quilted it yet, but the top is done.

There were 5 steps to this mystery and 64 four inch blocks to be made. Its was quite fun and I continue to be amazed at Carol Doak's talent for design. I think this pattern is stunning! Here are all the blocks for the quilt top in various states of being put together in units following
directions of the 5 steps. I finished all the blocks just before lunch today. I thought they were pretty impressive just piled together.


After a quick lunch (quilters don't take long lunches when a project is near completion; in fact they usually don't eat at all, but I was hungry and needed to move my joints so I took a break) I sat back down at my machine and began the final assembly. In my haste I did make a mistake or to and so needed to do a bit of "unsewing". Not fun when you are putting together a top made of 64 paper pieced blocks because you use little stitches.

One of my favorite parts of quilting is watching the final top emerge out of the pile of blocks. So without final ado here is the solved Anniversary Mystery quilt top in all its glory..................

It's coming

Be patient!

TaDa....................

Here it is!


Italic
I have no idea what design I will use to quilt it. That decision will wait for another week or so. I've loved getting back to my quilting, but now I am really itching to get back to my stamp room. It's been a long time since I have been there as well. Life must be easier when a person only has one passion, but then that would be boring............

Friday, June 26, 2009

SO WHAT IS SUZANNE UP TO?????

It has been so long since I havedone any posting here or any stamping or sewing I am surprised I finally got back to doing anything. For the past month I have been both traveling and working on some health issues that have kept me feeling pretty blue. Its time to get out of my funk and back to living. For the moment I have gone back to my first love, quilting.

I have been part of an online quilting group with Carol Doak the "Queen of Paper Piecing" for several years, but have not been active with them for at least two years. That's where I went to begin again. Carol was in the process of offering a mystery quilt project and though I was several weeks behind I decided to jump in.

Now you might ask what is a mystery quilt??? Well it's a quilt you make that is just what its name says....a mystery. There are clues (construction steps) given along the way. The first clue pertains to the fabric you need and the amount of each one. It is stated simply as things like 1 yard of dark for background, 1/2 yard multicolor small print, 1 yard light cool fabric etc...... You don't know what pattern you will be using just what the colors and values will be. Here is what I choose from the Step one instructions. (Note: the second fabric from the left didn't phoograph well it is actally a medium range rosey pink) Also givien qith step 1 was a cutting chart so you can cut our fabrics and have everything ready to sew as the other steps are revealed.


Step two was intructions for 16--4 inch blocks. Since this mystery is authord by Carol Doak it is a paper piecing project. So for this step there was a paper piecing pattern which is numbered in the order that you sew the fabrics on. I was instructed to make 8 each of two different color placements for this block. Here is the beginnings of my mystery. Things begin to get really intersting at this point.



Since I was a late comer to this mystery I actually already had printed out step 3 and was ready to go as soon as I finished step 2. Step 3 used the same block as step 2 in a different color pattern. We were to make 16 blocks and then sew them together into 4 sets of 4 blocks. Here that step is completed.

So now I have 8 single 4 inch blocks, 4 units of two blocks sewn side by side and 4 units of four blocks. I however still have no idea how the quilt will look when all is done. The mystery is still safe!

Saturday, May 09, 2009

50th ANNIVERSARY CELEBRATION!

I had a 50th anniversary party to attend this afternoon. So my morning activity was to make a special card for the special couple. They are not a very fussy or fru-fruy (I know, I know that's probably not a word and if it is it's probably not spelled correctly) couple so I wanted to make a very simple but nice card.

Being a 50th Anniversary there needed to be gold involved somehow. Fortunately I have just replenished my Stampin' Up Brushed Gold card stock. I was perfect for what I wanted to do. Using that and my Encore Gold stamp pad and gold embossing powder this is the design I came up with. There is also a stamped sentiment appropriate to anniversary celebrations on the inside of the card. The card base is white card stock.

I wish I could say they liked the card, but me being me......I left for the party without it. Hopefully they will be at church tomorrow. If not the card will go into the mail on Monday.

I've been making a lot of cards this weekend. So if I don't get to do much once I get back into the work week I will have plenty to showcase here on my BLOG. So do please come back.

Wednesday, May 06, 2009

BLOG CANDY ALERT AND RECYCLED ITEMS!

Quick second post in less than a half an hour. But after making my post about the collage card I went and did some BLOG surfing myself. The first BLOG is visited was Judy Rozema's Joy in a JAR. Green items are "in" right now. We all want to be environmentally friendly. One of the ways crafters do this is by using recycled items in their craft projects. Joy has come up with a wonderful project that does just that. Check it out on her Tuesday posting. Also she is giving away some BLOG candy in celebration of her 2nd year BLOGing.

Now I have another project to try out on my ever growing list!

COLLAGE CARD

This is actually an older card that I made quite some time ago, but it's been hanging around in my photos for the web long enough and so I decided to feature it today.

This is a style card that I find very difficult to do. Especially to do well. It's a one dimensional and one media collage. I used all different line drawn stamps and randomly stamped the images around the water color paper. All the stamps I used are Stampin' Up and most if not all are retired ones. Then I added some color using my watercolor crayons and an aqua painter. I think I may have been a bit too heavy handed with the color and a simple wash of color would have been more effective.

The card needed some dimensional element it was just too flat so I wrapped some hemp twine around the watercolor paper (after roughing up the edges) and attached a tag by hanging it off the hemp with a piece of hodge podge hardware. and placed brads from the same hodge podge hardware set. This unit was then mounted on a black card base. When I use black card stock for card basis I often place a piece of white cardstock that is sponged in a coordinating color from the front of the card or basic grey ink. I always do this if I am selling the card. If I am making the card to use myself I use a white ink pen to write my message and sign the inside.

That's it for today. Tomorrow is a day off work and I am trying to decide how messy I want to get. GinaK's technique today on Stamp TV is the shaving cream technique. I've never tried this but just may give it a try....it can also be used to lay color down on fabric so I can get a two fer' if I master it.

Thanks for stopping by. Please come back again!

Tuesday, May 05, 2009

OOPS! I'M WRONG AGAIN!

Well, I don't have my story straight once again!!!!!!

The Belli Challenge has gone to a bi-weekly challenge so I am not late but right smack dab in the middle with my posting. So I guess that's the good news.....the bad news is I need to wait till next Wednesday to get my Belli fix!!!!!!!!

I'm just going to have to find me another challenge for tomorrow. With all the challenges out there that shouldn't be too hard. And is suddenly occurs to me I need to get a Mother's Day card made and in the mail......it's this Sunday!!!!!! EEK!

BETTER LATE THEN NEVER!

Here is my Belli Challenge Card for last weeks challenge #64. The new challenge comes out tomorrow morning and so I am just under the wire. The challenge was to use large eyelets or brads on a card. I had planned to use my jumbo eyelets, but just couldn't come up with a design that I liked. I need to continue working with them to come up with something or just give them away. They've been lying around long enough. I did use some large brads though. Not particularly original but I got the used.

I so love Olivia. She's from Sweet' n Sassy's set Owl Occasions.

I used my nesties once again....love them too...I need to get some more sets soon I hope. Squares and Ovals are next on the list. And Olivia is colored using my SU markers. I didn't want a smooth color. The blotchiness I think gives the impression of feathers. The patterned papers are SU of indeterminate packs as they came out of my scrap pile and I am not familiar enough with all the old sets of paper to remember names.

So that is my card. To see more creations for this Belli Challenge visit the Creative Belli Blog. I know you will see some fantastic cards there. No doubt about it!

And don't forget tomorrow is Wednesday which means a whole new challenge will be posted on the Creative Belli Blog. I wonder what it will be????

Monday, May 04, 2009

BLEACHING

If you are a member of GinaK's StampTV you may have seen this card already. If you are not a member you really should be! It's a wonderful place to learn new techniques and also to get to know some wonderful stampers.

This card is a result of a video GinaK did several weeks ago on how to use bleaching on your cards. She showed two different techniques and this is the one I have tried and really enjoy doing....fortunately I like the smell of bleach....if you don't this may not be a technique for you.

What I did was stamp the Iris image from GinaK's Elegant Flowers set using black craft ink from Stampin' Up. I then embossed the image with clear powder. You could use versa mark in and then emboss with black embossing powder, but I don't have much luck with black powder. Even with using an embossing buddy to reduce the static on my card stock I still get black speckles...so I prefer black ink and clear powder. In order to get the effect of bleaching you also want to stamp your image on colored card stock....NOT white!

I then painted inside the embossed lines using plain household bleach and a fine paint brush. I did not use an expensive brush in case the bleach would harm the bristles...it didn't but I was sure about whether it would or not. The cheap on worked fine and so this is probably what I will always use.

One of the neat things about bleaching is that you never really know what color your card stock will bleach to. And the bleaching is not always uniform throughout the image. I haven't tried another image but will. (My list of things I am going to do again is getting longer and longer!)

Above is a close up of my bleached Irises.

I finished off designing my card using my circle nesties and brushed gold cardstock, some fun ribbon, brads and digital background paper available from GinaK. The paper I printed out onto HP Brochure paper which is heavier weight than regular printer paper and smoother than regular card stock. It is not as smooth though as glossy card stock. Here is a picture of the finished card. The sentiment is also from the Elegant Flowers set.

Tomorrow I need to work on designing and making a card for a 50th anniversary party I am going to on Saturday. So I will probably work some more with my brushed gold card stock. Hopefully I will make it back to post a picture. If my mojo is missing I will show you the card I made for this last weeks Belli Challenge to use large brads or eyelets. Come to think of it tomorrow is Tuesday so I better get that posted here! Then next day there is a new Belli Challenge!

Saturday, May 02, 2009

FLOWER SOFT

A few weeks ago I purchased a new product to use in my cards making adventures: Flower Soft. I've only used it a few times bur am enjoying it when I do. This card was so quick and simple its almost a shame to even show you. But, sometimes we need quick cards because they need to get in the mail ASAP and there is not a lot of time for design thought.

The only stamping on this card is the sentiment "Praying for You". The tree branches are on designer paper. By themselves the branches were pretty boring. Outside my window is a beautiful ornamental cherry tree. At the time I was needing to make this card that tree was just beginning to come into bloom. It reminded me of a card I saw at Queen's Ink, a local stamp store, which is where I found my flower soft. I also got the paper there.

The flower soft is put on the branches in little tufts that look like clumps of cherry blossoms. It also takes a rather mundane looking card and gives it a bit of zip. Add some layers, moss green satin ribbon, and some lovely little self adhesive pearls and voila a lovely card ready to send to someone who needs a lift and a friend.

Friday, May 01, 2009

PAPER FOLDING

I 've always been intrigues by articles in magazines showing paper folding on cards. Up until recently though I had never tried the technique. I think part of the reason I have been drawn to cards using this technique is that it reminds me of a style of quilt blocks that I like making.

I needed a congratulatory card for a FLYBaby Buddy and decided it was time to try the technique. I liked how it turned out but did learn several things in the process.

Here is the card and a close up of the paper folding image.

I choose to do a heart design. I guess actually the correct term for this technique is Iris Folding. I discovered my mistake in the name of it while searching for the web site where I got the directions. It is Iris Folding @ CircleofCrafters.com. If you are interested in trying the technique yourself I would suggest you visit their site. It's very helpful.

There are a few things I would like to add as tips for having sauces with this. The first is use as light a weight paper for the design paper that you are folding. Double sided paper will not work in my opinion. Most of it is just too heavy and you end up with a lot of bulk. My next card I make I plan to try Origami Paper. It's very light weight. My other tip would be get yourself some large punches or nestabilities to create the hole that shows the design. Unless you are much better with a hobby knife than I am (which very likely you are because I am terrible with them) cutting the hole using the knife will be the most frustrating part of the whole process.

Here is a close up of my heart. It doesn't show in the photo but the center paper I used was a glitter paper. This was a very simple card. The heart is the primary element. I want to play around with other design presentations for this technique.....

....we'll see if I ever do....I'm know for trying things wanting to do more and then moving on to a new technique. BUT I do have a lot of origami paper know and it will need to be used so there is hope it will happen....some day.....

Thursday, April 30, 2009

TILE #2

Here is the second tile I made following GinaK's directions on StampTV.

I can not say how much I love these and how much I enjoy making them. So much so that today I purchased more colors of Stazon ink. I am ready to go and make more.

Unfortunately it is past my bed time and so I must head off to bed.

At the moment I do not remember the name of this stamp set I used for this tile. It is a retired Stampin' Up set. That I do know. Except for the leaves they I do know are from GinaK's Elegant Flowers set. The set I used on my other tile.

JUST A LITTLE SIDE FUN!

I took a little quiz I found on my friend LadyDoc's BLOG and I love the results....I haven't been to London in a long time so maybe it is time to go again.....




You Belong in London



A little old fashioned, and a little modern.

A little traditional, and a little bit punk rock.

A unique soul like you needs a city that offers everything.

No wonder you and London will get along so well.

What City Do You Belong In?<

I am a little of this and a little of that so I guess this does fit me.

Tonight I will be back to stamping.....I took a picture of my other tile this morning so stop back by to see it.

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

I'M BACK

Wow it's been a long time since I have updated this BLOG. I have been dealing with some health issues and though they are not yet all resolved I have resolved that I need to get back into life. I've missed posting here and also missed spending time in my craft room.

My fingers aren't yet pain free and still are pretty swollen and stiff, but I can't wait for that to change because it just may not ever do so. (For those who do not know, I have been diagnosed with active and severe Rheumatoid Arthritis.) So it is time to stop feeling sorry for myself and move on to my "new normal" life.

GinaK's new video on StampTV was just the exciting kick in the pants I needed today. IT was on stamping tile coasters and how to do so without having to do any extra work to make them waterproof. Wow....they are so easy when you know how....if you want to make wonderful coasters for gifts you MUST watch this video!

Here is my tile.


I'm not sure if it will be used as a coaster or as a home dec. accessory tile propped on an easel. The tiles I found in my stash are a bit large I think for coasters. But the are waterproof and so certainly could be.

I followed GinaK's instructions pretty closely. Except that since the stamp I used, which is from her set Elegant Flowers which is available in the Floral Frenzy kit, is a solid image and I wanted to use several colors I colored the stamp using ink picked up on ends of Q-tips. I had to work pretty fast so the ink didn't dry in the stamp before I could stamp the tile. I wasn't sure it would work but it did.

I made a second tile using a Stampin' Up stamp, but haven't photographed it yet. It was a outlined image so I colored it in using daubers like Gina did on the video. I will try to get a photo of it in the next day or so. I also like how it turned out.

Now I just need to get some more tiles and padded feet for the bottom as well as more colors of Stazon! I see Christmas presents for everyone.......give them a try.

Saturday, April 11, 2009

I MISS MY BLOG and NEWS ABOUT BLOG CANDY!

Sorry I haven't been posting lately. I am having some health issues and typing is not an easy thing to do. Hopefully after a visit to a new Dr next week I will either get some advice on exercises, diet or drugs to help my fingers function better. I did want to stop by though and pass on some news about a wonderful opportunity to enter into a drawing for some wonderful BLOG candy. You simply need to visit Creating With Chrissy and see what Chris is offering. It's a wonderful stamp set from Sweet & Sassy. Simply leave a comment on the BLOG entry about the Blog Candy. Of course while you are visiting her Blog do check out her other posts and discover how wonderfully creative she it.

Do hope to be sharing some cards and other projects with you in the new week. In the meantime have wonderful Easter tomorrow.

Wednesday, April 01, 2009

CHECK IT OUT!

The Belli Challenge #61 that is.......Its April Fools Day today and in honor of that the challenge is to make a humorous card. Also as I said last night I am their Guest Designer for the week and I am honored with this designation......I hope that doesn't have any April Fools significance.....??? Also part of the Belli Challenges is to use what we have and often to unearth and use what we haven't used in a while.

Humorous cards maybe easier for some than others.....I found myself in the others category. The question became what is humor on a card? I knew there are lots of "lie down and roll on the floor laughing" humorous stamp images out, but alas I don't own any of those stamps......so I needed to take what I had and make it humorous. I think I got to cute not so sure about humorous...... You be the judge!

I have two cards. The first is a Birthday party in the making.....



I love my little SockMonkey from Stampin' Up.....he's as humorous as I get....but once again I think hes more cute really than humorous....He is joined by a few other of his Stampin' Up friends one from A Little Bird Told Me and the snake from Zoofari. They all got together, donned their party hats and are ready to wish someone a Happy Birthday!

I colored my images with Copics and "fluffed" up the little bird using my new Flower Soft kit. Sock money is wearing a brown marbled skin, but everything else is colored. There was a lot of fussy cutting of images on this card and also a bit of Stickle sparkle that didn't photograph well.

My second card is for all you BoaBabes out there.........

Once again I think the card is cute It will bring a smile to your face not a roll on the floor laugh..........

The stamp set I used hasn't been off my shelf in ages, but is one of my favorites....Hats Off a retired set by Stampin' Up I love giving this Babe a real boa!!!! This one was made by using some fibres stripped from a length of brown fuzzy yarn. She's also sporting pearls and a ruby ring......

I love the edge punch I used here. It was a yardsale find! Why people would want to give up some lovelies like this I'll never know but I'm glad they do! It obviously didn't show up nicely when it was white against while so I placed a narrow strip of black card stock behind it to pop out the detail of the punch.

So there you have it. Now its your turn.....try your hand at a humorous card and then head over to the Creative Belli Challenge Blog and link it up using Mr Linky! Come back to the Creative Belli Challenge and one day you to might have the honor and the thrill to be a Guest Designer!

Have a wonderful stampin' day!

Tuesday, March 31, 2009

SIMPLY A FISHY CARD!

Just a simple card tonight. I've been working on reorganizing my stamp room and in so doing am uncovering some older well loved stamp sets that have not been used in quite some time. Fishy Friends is one of these sets. It is a retired Stampin' Up set. I have lots and lots of retired Stampin' Up sets. Some people are better at getting rid of their retired sets....personally I have separation anxiety just thinking about it doing so!

I wanted to use the set and I wanted a simple yet cute card. This is what I came up with. I choose the colors because the reminded me of underwater colors. All the images were stamped in plain black and all are layered on navy card stock. I didn't want boring so I added the navy strips punch with the word punch from SU and to one added five golden yellow brads and to the other the "miss you" sentiment embossed in white and two lavender brads. These strips are also raised on dimensionals to give some added interest.

That's it for my easy card tonight. Tomorrow morning I will post my Belli Challenge cards for this week. I am this weeks guest designer and am so honored to be so! Come back and see what I came up with for this weeks challenge and it was a challenge for me!

Saturday, March 28, 2009

MORE SYMPATHY FOR PETS

It seems that there is a rash of sick and unfortunately dying pets once again; so I find my self making more pet sympathy cards. These are so sad to make because in most cases the pets lost truly were family members and even the children of the couples.

I am still so grateful to have my Pet Stack card stock pack from DCWV. IT is my first go to collection of papers for these cards.

I've made cards both for the loss of cats as well as the lose of dogs. At the moment I only need the dog ones, but I will be ready for future loses.

The cat and dog stamps are from Inkadinkadoo and the sentiment on the dog card is from Papertrey. They each have a specific stamped message about the loss of a pet on the inside.

I've always wondered how these cards are received. At least until Thursday night when I saw a good friend who just lost her beloved Westie, Sherlock, last week. He was her and her husbands "little boy". They had no human children of their own. She told me how touched she was that I took the time to make a person card for the lose of a pet. That it showed them I really did care and understand what Sherlock had meant to them both.

So I will continue making these cards. I thank the Lord that he has given me this small talent that can be shared with others and provide them some comfort.

I did get my Copic Colour Challenge card done today and it is waiting patiently to be photographed. Oh and a little side note.....my mouth feels much better today. I am thinking rather than a tooth problem it was stress reated pain in my jaw.....I'm working real hard to reduce the stress that seems to be pervasive in my life at the moment.