Friday, 28 February 2014

CFC129 - Shades of Gray

This is my second post for today. For my Festive Friday post, please scroll down!

Today's the day of my first CAS-ual Fridays challenge as a Girl Friday!

Now that you've met everyone, you can understand why I'm so excited to be part of this amazing DT!

The challenge is to use at least two shades of grey. (BTW - do you spell it gray or grey? Is it a preference thing? A country thing? I've always spelled it grey, but I seem to be in a minority! lol!)

I used Sands of Time and my warm grey Copic markers to create this paint-chip card. I love the handwritten font of the 'every' and 'always' - so flirty and casual!

Remember this challenge is now 3 weeks long - lots of time to come up with lots of ideas! The deadline for this challenge is March 21 and you can play as many times as you like!

The winner gets a fun-filled guest spot on the CAS-ual Fridays Stamps blog, and a prize from our Super Sponsor:

FFC26 - Silent Night

Time for a new Festive Friday Challenge! Here's the inspiration photo:

I went pretty literal, mimicking the shape of the dipped-cookies. I still had this new Hero Arts stamp out on my desk from the other day when I used it to make this card. I don't buy stamps like this very often because I think that being so detailed, it can be difficult to use them in different ways. So part of me was determined to use the stamp differently and I think it came together very well.

I used Soft Suede as my brown and I just love how the Real Red pops on it! The holly is an old PTI die.

I hope you'll join us! The deadline is Wednesday March 12.

Thursday, 27 February 2014

RIC54 - Party On!

Where's the white space, right?! I know! But isn't it fun?

 I was inspired by Lesley's amazing baby card:

I love the idea of the different sizes and shapes being used in rows, so I did something similar and then turned it on its side.

I used colours from this week's Runway Inspired Challenge

That little stamp is one I found in the $1.50 bin at Michael's.

Wednesday, 26 February 2014

Church Christmas in Black & White

Look at all that snow! It looks just like Toronto! Hopefully not for too much longer!

This Hero Arts stamp arrived in the mail the other day and once I performed a little surgery on it*, it was good to go. I paired it with an old Stampabilities sentiment (also surgically altered). I cranked out 24 of these babies on Tuesday afternoon for my Church Christmas project, using a Soft Stone card base.

These cards were an experiment in black. I started off using my new Memento Luxe black ink. It is extremely rich and black, but it is also slow-drying (like over night!) and (in my humble opinion) messy to work with. I have never loved pigment inks -  I use Whisper White cardstock, which is a coated cardstock, and that means that the ink sits on top of it longer. If you use Papertrey or Neenah, which are uncoated cardstocks, I think that the drying time would be shorter since the ink will soak into the card stock more quickly. Anyway, I'm no expert, I just go with what I like. And for this card I ended up liking my Versafine Onyx, stamped and then embossed with clear ep. It is slightly less black than the Luxe, but then my fingers were also less black than when I used the Luxe.

*stamp surgery on woodblock stamps is easy. You put your stamp in the microwave for 15 seconds and then it's easy to peel the stamp and foam away from the wood. Cut out the bits you don't want (mostly frames in these two instances) and if you're quick, the glue on the wood and the foam will still be warm enough to just stick them back together.

Tuesday, 25 February 2014

CASology 84 - Paint!

This week's CASology Cue Card is Paint!

This one's just full of possibilities, isn't it? Paint chips, paint brushes, paint swooshes.... I decided to go with a paintbox. You know I love to use all the bold, bright colours at once, and it's easy to do that and still be CAS - just make sure there's lots of breathing room around your focal point!

Now it's your turn - check out what the DT came up with:

Monday, 24 February 2014

Girl Friday!

The day is finally here! I can tell you the secret I've been struggling to keep for a while now! I'm one of the 2014 Girl Fridays!

There's lots of change going on with this popular challenge, including more time to play, more prizes and more recognition! There's more details here.

All week, we new members of the DT will be introducing ourselves and on Friday, our new challenge will start! 

As a fun way to get to know us, Michelle has asked us to answer some questions about ourselves:

1. How long have you been a cardmaker, and how were you first introduced to it?

I went to a Stampin' Up party in January 2006, hosted by my cousin. I ordered the Bold Brights (you're not surprised, are you?) collection of inks and some stamps sets and never looked back. I've been blogging since January 2012 and still enjoy it as much as ever!

2. What color are your toenails painted right now? 

Although I have pedicures all year long, I only paint my toes in April - November (when people might see them). In the winter, I wear socks and let my toenails breathe! I'm dying for some sock-free weather and colourful toes right about now! I always pick a close-to-clear neutral for my hands, but often go pretty wild with my toes. I love OPI polish almost solely for the entertainment value of the great names they have. 

3. If your family locked up your crafty supplies for an entire month, what would you do instead? 

Walk more, volunteer more, play piano more, read more, probably bake more. Not drive my kids around more, because that just isn't possible!

4. Favorite thing to order at Starbucks: 

I never go to Starbucks (is that bad?). I never developed a taste for coffee and I only eat home baking (see above)! I finally kicked my 20+ year 4-cans-a-day Diet Coke habit about two years ago and pretty much drink only water now.

5. You've reached your destination but just as you are turning your car off, a song comes on the radio and you are sooo happy to hear it that you sit in your car until it's over (singing along is optional *wink*). Name that song: 

Right now, I'm loving the soundtrack from "Music and Lyrics", but longer term, it would be any song by Bowie, especially Never Get Old! And singing along is definitely NOT optional! I always sing along,much to my kids' embarrassment!

Don't forget to leave a comment here - one lucky comment will be randomly selected for a prize!

Saturday, 22 February 2014

Happy 11th Birthday

Another Pinterest-inspired birthday card, this time for my daughter who is turning 11 in a couple of weeks.

I used a PTI die, cut in black and coated in Crystal Effects. The 11 is made up of two lower-case l's from a Memory Box Alphabet set. Each 1 is 4 layers thick - 3 white and one hot-pink mirror. I used a copic marker to colour the edges of the ones so that they wouldn't be white.

Friday, 21 February 2014

LIM159 - FRIENDS-inspired Birthday

Remember Friends?

I made this for a friend of Struan's who is having a birthday this weekend. The Penny Black alphabet has a similar feel to the Friends font and it's so easy to use copics and crystal effects to add the colourful dots.

I am anxiously awaiting delivery of my new Memento Black and Memento Luxe Black inks. I re-ink all my coloured inks, but I have never found re-inking Tuxedo Black to be very satisfactory for some reason. Susan says that the Luxe ink is wonderful (although slow-drying, which will be a challenge for me, I'm sure), so I'm looking forward to trying it.

Linking up to LIM159 - Masculine challenge.

Thursday, 20 February 2014

Muse 55, OLS2 - Thanks!

A quick, one-layer card for this week's Muse and this month's OLS challenges.

Here's Marion's super-happy Muse for this week:

And just in the nick of time. We've had so much snow here and today it's warming up and we're supposed to have up to 50 mm of rain and possibly even thunderstorms! There's a real risk of flooding since most of the catch basins and sewers are covered in snow and ice. Wouldn't it be nice to see a rainbow tomorrow morning when it's all finished!

I used my favourite Inkadinkado Thanks stamp and repeated (for OLS - Can You Repeat That) an old Papertrey stamp from Faux Ribbon.

I hope you can join us for both these challenges. Muse's deadline is Monday at 8:00 am. Then voting will take place until Tuesday at 8:00 am and the results will be posted on Tuesday at 12:00 pm.

OLS is closing at midnight on Monday, and then the 'Details' post will go up later in the week and our new challenge will start on Saturday March 1.

Wednesday, 19 February 2014

The Card Concept - Challenge 4 - Floral

Time for the next Card Concept Challenge! Let's go floral!

Very pretty inspiration photo - lots of circular blooms with lots of layers. To interpret this photo into Clean and Graphic, I cut down to one flower, punched up the colours to achieve high contrast and used basic, simple shapes from Retro Mod Shapes, from Stamplorations. I added a sentiment in text that has a similar weight as the flower shapes, and then to ground the whole thing, I used two score lines (the top one is interrupted where the 'y' drops down).

Now it's your turn - are you finding your style? I can say that having to explain why my cards are Clean and Graphic has definitely made me think a lot more about the differences between the various 'Clean' styles we have. It's still difficult sometimes to determine exactly where each card fits, though, isn't it? But don't let that keep you from trying - we love beautiful cards in ALL styles!

Tuesday, 18 February 2014

CASology 83 - Jump!

This week's CASology Cue Card is Jump!

I guess I must have a sister who loves horses (I do!) because I immediately thought of horses jumping. To keep this card very CAS, I masked a square and sponged only the top and bottom with sky and grass colours (leaving a white area between the two colours). Your eye  is very smart and it 'completes' the square so that it doesn't really look like anything's missing. Having a defined focal point leaves plenty of breathing room for a clean feeling!

As usual the DT has come up with some great interpretations of this week's Cue Card - go check them out and then make sure you join us before the deadline on Sunday at 5:00 pm EST.

Sunday, 16 February 2014

Last Valentines of 2014

This is the one I made for my teenage son. Teenage boys are so hard to make cards for! As I often do when I'm stumped, I focused on the sentiment and cut it out using Avery Elle's alphabet dies. I cut a heart out of white, coloured it with a red copic and coated it with Crystal Effects for some shine. (Also linking this up to LIM159 - Masculine)

And this is the one I made for Kate using different colours of foil cardstock. Difficult to photograph - sometimes the purple looks like pink, but very shiny and fun in real life!

Saturday, 15 February 2014

Muse #54 - Spring Tulips

Spring is sorely needed and much anticipated in this part of the world, so I was thrilled to see so much green on this week's Muse by Therese:

I used an old favourite - a Magenta tulip stamp simply coloured with copics and then coated with a thin layer of Stickles (I dot it on and then spread it around with my finger so that it's not too thick.)

The deadline for this week's Muse Challenge is Monday at 8:00 am. You can then vote (even if you didn't link up a card) until Tuesday at 8:00 am and the winners will be announced on Tuesday at noon.

Friday, 14 February 2014

FFC25 - Red and White Shaker

Time for another Festive Friday Challenge!

Just like the last challenge, I reached for some acetate, this time to make a shaker card. Laura makes it look so easy, but of course I tried it from memory rather than watching the video again, and missed the order of a couple of crucial steps. Oh well, in the end I got there!

I focused on the shiny red of the ornaments, the dull metal of the stand and added silver and gold sequins for some fun!

Now it's your turn - don't forget the deadline is Feburary 26th! We can't wait to see what you come up with.

Wednesday, 12 February 2014

Pinterest-inspired Birthday Cards

We have two birthdays coming up - my brother-in-law (Feb 19) and my horse-surgeon sister (Feb 20). I turned to Pinterest for some inspiration. Here's the inspiration for my BIL's card:

I love the overlapping words of different strengths and in different directions and achieved a similar look by using black and grey with one of my favourite Papertrey sentiments.

For this one, this crochet blanket with its separated rainbow stripes is bright and cheery, but still very clean. I added another Papertrey sentiment and a Yellow Owl Workshop horse to personalize it for my sister.

Tuesday, 11 February 2014

CASology 82 - BOLD

This week's CASology Cue Card is Bold!

I used Uniko's All Occasion Sentiments # 2 and #3 and this Pinterest photo to create this card, making sure to leave plenty of white space around my bold focal point.

So what's your idea of Bold? Can't wait to see! Check out the blogs of the other DT members to see how they've interpreted this Cue Card!

Monday, 10 February 2014

Valentines for little boys

Each year I make some Valentines for one of the teachers at Kate's school. She has two little sons who have lots of teachers to give Valentines to and so I like to make cute but boyish cards for them.

This old Stampendous robot set (I think it's two sets actually - one of the robots and one with the sentiments, maybe?) works perfectly! All the bits (heads, bodies, legs and arms) are separate and you can make them into robots however you like. I love the look on these two faces, so I use them the most.

Simply stamped and shaded with Copics - perfect little cards for boys' teachers!

Sunday, 9 February 2014

OLS2 - Can You Repeat That?

This month's One-Layer Simplicity challenge is to use repetition on your card. I just got this Yellow Owl Workshop set of two balloons (only one used here - the other says birthday). It has a childlike feel to it so I used bright basic colours (I see that some of my inkpads need to be reinked!) and then used a sharpie to draw the strings down to the Hero Arts 'birthday'. I chose the Sharpie because it is about the same thickness as the font of the black sentiment. I think that thinner strings would cause the card to look unbalanced. Another design tip - I notice when I'm overlapping inks like this, yellow can very quickly disappear underneath the other darker colours (see where it overlaps with the green? No? Exactly my point!), so I usually try to minimize the overlap so that it feels like there is an adequate amount of yellow in the design.

I'm also linking up to Less Is More 158  - One Layer Anything Goes.

Saturday, 8 February 2014

CTS63 - Valentines

This week's CAS(E) This Sketch is a classic with endless possibilities!

I used it to make these two valentine cards in classic Valentine colours.

I was inspired by a new set with a sentiment "I quiver for you". I love the connection to Cupid's arrows, and let's face it, who doesn't love a good quiver, am I right? I used an MFT sentiment for "You", a Uniko arrow and Stamps of Life Alphabet for the rest of the sentiment.

For the second card, an old Stampendous set of robots and robotic sentiments works well with this Technique Tuesday wall outlet.  I was looking for some lightning, but then remembered that we all charge our devices in our wall outlets each night. Very simple, and another good Valentine pun!

Friday, 7 February 2014

RIC53 - Glory to the Newborn King!

This week's Runway Inspired Challenge was perfectly timed - it arrived on the same day as this beautiful stained glass angel die from Die-Versions.

I focused on the 'medallion' right in the centre above the waistline of the dress - it has some beautiful turquoise as well as the magenta and gold.

Inlaying all those little pieces was a little fussy, so I don't think this will end up being mass-produced as a Church Christmas card! I'll have to find a simpler way to use this beautiful die again!

ETA (February 18): This card was a winner!

Wednesday, 5 February 2014

Muse #53 - Welcome Vicki!

This is Vicki's first week as Muse. I was so thrilled when she agreed to become a member of the Muse DT! I love her work - she is so very talented (and she's very nice and funny to boot!), and I have been so looking forward to playing along with her first inspiration card! But, despite its beauty and serenity, I admit that this week's Muse, with its muted colour scheme had me stumped for a while!

This card came to me in stages but the real breakthrough was remembering that I have this brilliant yellow vellum that really adds a punch of colour to the card, as well as making beautiful butterfly wings because it's translucent. And in the end, I'm really pleased with this card that I would never have made if it wasn't for Vicki's inspiration, so thank you Vicki!

From Vicki's card, I used the butterfly (same MFT dies as Vicki, in fact!) the circle, the vertical stripes (embossed with my grosgrain embossing plate from MFT), the dots and the fishtail on the sentiment.

I hope you'll get a chance to play along! Don't forget that the deadline is Monday morning at 8:00 am EST. Voting goes from then until Tuesday morning at 8:00 am and then the results will be posted on Tuesday at noon!

The Card Concept - Challenge 3 - Monochromatic Pink

Time for the next Card Concept Challenge: Monochromatic Pink!

To make a clean and graphic card from such a busy inspiration photo, I focused on one element - the ribbon tails - and repeated it. The layering of the pink stripes creates different tones of pink and adds interest and texture. I kept the white frame quite thick, to help keep the card clean. I used "Duly Noted" from Clear & Simple Stamps and Super Stripes from Papertrey. A little heart cut-out helps to reinforce the sentiment. And finally, I put stickles around the popped up panel, but on the card base (Stickles often don't play nicely with pink or red inks and I didn't want to take the chance of it changing colours!)

A reminder of the rules:
  1. Use the Challenge to create a card.
  2. Choose one of the design team "styles" to create your card. Click HERE for the different styles summary.
  3. Explain in your post which style you used.
  4. Link up your blog post here, not your whole blog.
  5. Comment on the card ahead of you and behind you in the linky. Everyone loves comments!
This challenge will end on Monday, February 17th at Noon (PST).