Thursday, 30 April 2015

Time for Graduation!

It's that time of year again! My friend asked me to make a card for her daughter who is graduating from the Faculty of Education at St Francis Xavier.

I used the idea of half-inlaying the die cut sentiment from this card by Maile Belles as my inspiration, but used only school colours. I used the new Papertrey Super Smoosh congratulations die.

Since the colours are only blue and white (bo-ring!) I added Stickles to the sentiment for a little sparkle.

I stamped the inside with some pale grey stars and a sentiment "So proud of you today".

Wednesday, 29 April 2015

Muse: Christmas Visions - DT Introduction

Make sure you head over to Muse: ChristmasVisions for the announcement of our first DT member! There's a prize, so be sure leave a comment there for a chance to win!

Tuesday, 28 April 2015

CASology 144 - Flight

This week's CASology Cue Card is Flight!

In my house, flight means only one thing. Mechanical. No birds and bees for us! My son is a glider pilot and a Flight Sergeant in the Royal Canadian Air Cadets. This summer, he's taking a 6 week course on Aircraft Maintenance at a college 2 1/2 hours north of us (through the Cadets). Most importantly, he is a nice, good kid. I could go on about how proud of him I am, but you would stop reading long before I would stop writing!

He's also turning 16 in June. Flight is the perfect opportunity to make his birthday card. I cut out my elements (airplane die from MFT, inlaid into a red circle over a white circle, letters and numbers from Memory Box). Let's face it - there's a lot of elements there! How to keep it CAS?

One easy way was to limit the colours I was using. In various versions as I was building this, I had some Air Cadet blue (actually, old SU! Brocade Blue) cardstock and gold mirror cardstock, but I finally decided to stick with just red and white. These are the colours of the Canadian Forces Snowbirds air demonstration squadron, one he admires greatly.

I love how the graphic 'sentiment' (Happy 16th Birthday to You) looks like a code or co-ordinates.

(a note about placement of the letters - I lined them up on grid paper on my desk before laying repositionable tape on top - I then lifted it up, put liquid glue on the backs of the letters and laid the whole kit'n'caboodle on the red panel. I then pressed the letters down and carefully removed the tape).

And now it's your turn to take flight! Before you go, make sure you check in with the rest of the DT for some more inspiration!

Monday, 27 April 2015

Fusion - Old School Roses

Yesterday I was cruising around blogland and I just loved Michele's card for the current Fusion challenge and was inspired to play along!

I'm using only the photo as inspiration and went really CAS with my old, old, old Stampin' Up Rose Rhapsody set (from 2000, long before I started stamping - I got it on ebay). I stamped and masked and that was it.

Sunday, 26 April 2015

CTS120 - Merry!

This card is for this week's CAS(E) This Sketch challenge. Here's the sketch:

I started with a Fog panel and cut out a Stampin' Up! Christmas tree. I added an Essentials by Ellen "Merry" and a tiny Impression Obsession heart in Poppy Parade and adhered the whole thing to a white card base.

I definitely have Christmas on my mind, with Muse: Christmas Visions starting up soon! On Wednesday, we will announce the first DT member. And there will be a 'stocking stuffer' so make sure you drop by and comment!

Saturday, 25 April 2015

Muse 114 - Thanks

Here's my Muse card, finally! This week we were inspired by Marion's pretty blue and white butterfly card.

I added some colours but kept the 'cut out of the panel' element, using Soft Stone over white. My Memory Box butterfly pops out of the panel (and even a little bit off the card!) and I finished with a Clearly Besotted thanks die, inlaid.

The deadline for this challenge is Monday morning at 8 am EDT. At that time you can vote until Tuesday morning at 8 - vote for your top 3  (even if you didn't link up a card) and we'll post the voting results on Tuesday at noon! Hope to see you there!

Friday, 24 April 2015

Blue Butterflies

I may have gone a little crazy with my new Gansai watercolours and this tiny butterfly die (MFT). I was playing around with this week's Muse inspiration and ended up making 4 cards. These three are 'rejects' - I'm happy with them, but I'm not going to use them as my Muse entry - that will be here tomorrow.

I watercoloured two blocks of colour - the first one (for the first card) was quite muted. I cut a square and then the butterfly from it, for a negative image. I coated the square in Stardust Stickles and finished the card with an Avery Elle sentiment stamped in Pacific Point.

I made the second and third cards using one piece of blended watercolouring that had more contrast and went from yellow through green to blue. For the second card (inspired by this card by Tracey), I used the positive butterflies, edged with my gold Zig Painty pen, and one of my favourite old Inkadinkado sentiments, embossed in gold.

Finally, for my third card I used some of the negatives left over to create a panel of 3 butterflies. I finished with a simple (unknown) thank you in charcoal for a more casual feeling.

ETA: Despite the fact that there are no Uniko products used here, Sandie and Beverly have encouraged me to link up at Uniko's Things with Wings challenge, so I have. Thank you, ladies!

Thursday, 23 April 2015

SSSCAS, OLCCC8 - We Wish You A Merry Christmas

So for some reason, yesterday I felt like making a Christmas card. I'm thinking it might have had something to do with the launch of Muse: ChristmasVisions (if you didn't see the news, check it out!). Thank you so much for such a warm reception  - lots of comments and new followers and I can tell you that the team just can't wait to start inspiring you on May 6! But we'll do some introductions before then  - we're bursting with our Christmas 'secret'! Our first DT Member will be announced next Wednesday, April 29 at 9 am.

As I visited various sites yesterday, Simon Says Stamp's Wednesday CAS challenge caught my eye. CAS and use Hero Arts - right up my alley. And One Layer Christmas Card Challenge had a new one up as well - anything goes with the option of a tree.

I used a Hero Arts tree (SU! Mossy Meadow ink) and Hero Arts sentiment (HA Red Royal). And then I did something I haven't done in a long, long time. I used my Zig Painty pen. Do you remember those? Silver on one end and gold on the other? The perfect tool for adding tiny shimmery gold 'ornaments' to my tree.

Wednesday, 22 April 2015

Big News! Muse: ChristmasVisions

There's a new kid in Christmas-town! That's right, I'm starting a new Christmas (or winter)-themed challenge called Muse: ChristmasVisions!

This is Muse with a Christmas twist! Same format, same rules (plus one - your card must be Christmas or winter-related). 

I will be DT Co-ordinator (just like I am at Muse) and we will be introducing the Design Team members one by one starting next Wednesday morning at 9 am! Our first challenge will go live on Wednesday, May 6 at 9 am.

Head over for more information and to pick up our member badge!

Tuesday, 21 April 2015

CASology 143 - Ombre

This week's CASology Cue Card is Ombre

I chose a blended form of ombre, starting at the top of my card and blending various blue distress inks to make my sky. I started with the lightest shade and really faded out as I came to about half-way down. Then I added the next shade, but only about one-third of the way, then I added a tiny bit of the darkest shade at the top, making sure all was well blended.

I used an old MFT Sun die and an Avery Elle "Happy Camper" sentiment. My first thought was to place them both right in the centre of the card - this is a classic, simple layout that gives great symmetry and is very pleasing to the eye. But sometimes we like to shake it up a bit, right? So I slightly offset the sun from the sentiment. This adds some interest but it remains balanced, since they're both about the same distance from the centre.

Now it's your turn! Be sure to get even more inspiration from the rest of the DT!

Sunday, 19 April 2015

RS160, CQC287 - Happy Birthday

I've combined two challenges to make this simple, masculine birthday card. 

First, Colour Q, where the challenge is to use black,grey, white and one spot of colour (I choose to believe in this case that 'happy' is one word, not 5 letters!). I chose my new favourite green - MFT Limelight

And Retrosketches - a lovely simple sketch perfect for a graphic, masculine card. I hope that the letters (WPlus9 die) hanging over the grey/white border can count as the tail on the thought bubble. I finished it with a little Simon Says Stamp 'Birthday'.

Saturday, 18 April 2015

Muse114 - Thanks ever so much!

This is my card for this week's Muse challenge, where Michele provided us with this inspiration:

I focused on colour scheme, the row of blue elements and the sentiment on the right. This card is made using a mishmash of manufacturers' products and I love that we have the freedom to mix and match! The 'thanks' dots are made with a Neat&Tangled stamp, an MFT die and Hero Arts new ombre inkpad (Pool to Navy). The 'ever so much' is from Paper Smooches.

The deadline for this challenge is Monday at 8 am. At that time you can vote (even if you don't link up a card) for your top 3 until Tuesday at 8. The voting results will be posted Tuesday at noon. I hope to see you there!

Friday, 17 April 2015

EHPSC - Inspired by Joan. Twice.

My breath literally caught when I saw this card by Joan yesterday. That bright pink and bold green - sigh! I warned her that I would be casing it. Soon. So I did. And I didn't stop at one, either!

I used a similar technique for both cards - I stamped a 4.25x4.25 panel using Bold Blooms from Essentials by Ellen, in MFT Razzleberry and PTI New Leaf. Then I cut a shape out of the centre, layered it with foil cardstock and popped it up. I then adhered the whole panel to a white card so that the inside of the front is nice and clean.

For the first one, I used another Essentials by Ellen set - Fancy Thanks, stamped in HA Charcoal. I cut a square and popped it up with gold. I will link this one up to Ellen Hutson's Pinsights April challenge.

For the second one, I used a Simon Says Stamp sentiment in black, and popped up a circle using silver foil cardstock.

This would make a beautiful gift set (I may simplify it to one layer) in different colours, with different sentiments!

Thursday, 16 April 2015

MM154 - Merry Christmas!

This week's Merry Monday challenge is "Let's Get Vintage". Um. No. I don't do vintage. Or so I thought! Then I remembered another challenge a long time ago, where the theme was Rustic. I didn't 'do' rustic back then (I still don't very often!) but I ended up with one of my all time favourite Christmas cards.

So in the same way I challenged myself two years ago to combine Rustic and CAS, yesterday, I challenged myself to combine Vintage and CAS. I think it was a success!

I started by using vintage-y colours (cream and Early Espresso), but keep the layout very simple. I used a script sentiment (unknown) and a 'vintage' PTI set, embossed in gold and then I coloured the leaves with distress markers in dark, muted colours.

Wednesday, 15 April 2015

Paper Smooches Goodies!

I got some new Paper Smooches goodies in the mail yesterday! I sat down right away and made these two simple cards.

The first one uses Twiggy Florets and it is crisp, classic and 'coloured' with Stickles. The sentiment was a little gift that Kim generously put into my package. I backed it onto MFT Summer Splash cardstock for some colour and a fresh feel.

The second is dramatic, but was very simple. I ran the new Happy Birthday Words die through my Big Shot, left it in the cardstock and then coloured and blended over it with Copics in rainbow order. I lost the dot for the i somewhere along the way, so I substituted some bling for a festive feel!

Tuesday, 14 April 2015

CASology 142 - Sweet

This week's CASology Cue Card is Sweet!

I went sweet 3 ways - I used the word (Paper Smooches Sugar Rush stamped in HA Soft Granite), colours (pastel Copics), and shape (meant to look like candy dots by using  a Simon Says Stamp die of a row of dots, coloured, inlaid back into the panel then coated in Glossy Accents).

We can talk CAS forever - there are lots of debates and lots of opinions about it, but for me, it always comes down to one main component - white space. In fact, I believe if you have enough white space, your 'clean' will allow you to cheat a bit on the 'simple' and give leeway for a little bit of colour, pattern, texture (or all of them!).

Now it's your turn! Show us how sweet you can be!

Before you go, make sure to get some inspiration from the rest of the design team:

Sunday, 12 April 2015

Masked Roses

Yes, you're in the right place. I just thought I'd try something new. And messy! I recently bought some distress stain sprays (Lawn, Ocean, Raspberry and Mustard as well as Pewter) and thought I'd give them a try.

I used some of the Essentials By Ellen Bold Blooms die cuts as masks and then sprayed away in Lawn and Raspberry and Pewter (hard to show the shimmer in the photo), on Ranger watercolour paper. It definitely gives an interesting effect (and I have some very pretty die cuts now, to use on a future card!)

As for the mess, yes, it was. Despite spraying into an old shoe box, pretty much everything on my desk had a fine mist of pewter on it when I was finished. I tried again with a bigger box and had more success - as they say, practice makes perfect!

Friday, 10 April 2015

Muse Challenge #112 - Thank you!

This is my card for this week's Muse challenge, where Vicki has provided us with this inspiration:

I can tell you that Vicki's loose, artistic water colouring scared me a little bit at first and I think it may have scared some of you too - not too many cards in the gallery as I post this! But I hope that my card shows that you can make a card that is your own style but still inspired by Vicki's!

I focused on the colours, the pierced circle element, elements of the layout and the scripty sentiment. I decided to only have one black stripe and I decided that rather than dividing the card front top and bottom, I would divide it left to right.

I used a mask of a flower die - sponged once in Salty Ocean then turned and sponged again in Mustard Seed (it blended and turned a bit green!) by Sue Wilson and popped in some orange by using an enamel dot. My scripty Paper Sushi thank you also helps to tie my card back to Vicki's.

So, be brave! Take a shot! The deadline is Monday at 8 am. At that time you can vote (even if you don't link up a card) for your top 3 until Tuesday at 8. The voting results will be posted Tuesday at noon. I hope to see you there!

Thursday, 9 April 2015

MFTWSC223 - Big Love!

This card is for this week's MFT Sketch Challenge.

I got some new MFT Inks and cardstock in the mail today, so it was a perfect time to try them out. These colours are Summer Splash and Limelight (LOVE this fresh green!)

This sketch works perfectly for the the idea that the love for this little baby (James George Ross, by the way), is so big it can hardly fit on the card (represented by the biggest of the Heart Stax). This is probably my favourite baby sentiment stamp, from Hero Arts and I stamped it in HA Soft Granite. The star border is from an old MFT set You Move Me and the inlaid Pierced Circle and Grosgrain texture plate (can't find it on the website - maybe it's retired?) provide the other elements from the sketch.

Wednesday, 8 April 2015

MFTWSC222 - Celebrate!

I made this using the sketch from the last MFT Sketch challenge , although I'm too late to link up.

I used a lot of my MFT supplies -  Blue Raspberry ink to make my circle, Fresh Cut Flowers Die-namics and Celebrate Big for the sentiment. I finished with some sparkly enamel dots from Doodlebug.

Tuesday, 7 April 2015

CASology 141- News

This week's CASology Cue Card is News. And we have big news to share! Make sure you pop over to CASology for details of our big news and our sponsor this week, The Alley Way Stamps.

Since we had snow on Easter (we had a green Christmas) and since I'm falling WAY behind in my Church Christmas cards, I decided to go with Christmas news ("glad tidings of great joy") rather than Easter news ("He is not here, He has risen") for this challenge.

I used an old Stampendous Three Angels stamp and a new Altenew sentiment from Lyrical Script. I stamped them in Versamark and then embossed with clear embossing powder. I cut two strips of silver glimmer paper and popped my focal panel up in between them.

Now it's your turn - what's your news? Make sure to visit the rest of the DT for even more inspiration!

and this week's Guest Designer: Claire

I am also linking this up to this week's Merry Monday challenge, to use angels.

Saturday, 4 April 2015

CQC285 - Thank You

I couldn't resist playing with the bold bright colours at the current Colour Q challenge. They are so much fun!

I love the look of tone on tone stamping - Tracey and Lynn do it a lot and I always think that I should really give it a try. You have to get your stamps really inked up - cardstock stamps differently than the  (coated and smooth) Whisper White and Gina K Pure Luxury that I usually stamp on. I used Simon Says Stamp Floral Bookmarking with matching dies and a Paper Sushi sentiment, stamped in Soft Suede. I used my MFT Pierced Rectangles to give the white panel a finished edge and a dot of Glossy Accents for the flower centres.

Muse 111 - You Made My Day

This is my card for this week's Muse challenge, where the lovely Kristie is our Guest Designer.

This layered heart design has been done before, many times by many people and it always catches my eye. It's clean and graphic and the colours have such impact.  I used my brand new Folk Hearts from Essentials By Ellen and the colours from Kristie's dramatic card. I popped up the black heart and finished with a Stampin' Up sentiment.

I made a second card, too - also very clean and graphic:

For this one I used an MFT 'you' stamped in Adirondack Pool, Sunset Orange and Hero Arts Pale Tomato. I used an MFT Thank die.

I hope you'll get a chance to play along with us this week! The deadline for this challenge is Monday morning at 8 am EDT. At that time you can vote for your 3 favourites (even if you didn't link up a card) until Tuesday morning at 8. Voting results will be posted at noon on Tuesday. Hope to see you there!

Friday, 3 April 2015

CTS117 - Merci Beaucoup!

Can you even stand yet another Bold Blooms card from me?! I hope so - I think this one is different from my others. I love how the leaves look like stained glass. I stamped them using my new MISTI to help with positioning and then coloured them with some cool-toned Copics. I used (loosely) the sketch from this week's CAS(E) This Sketch challenge:

I used an Impression Obsession sentiment that had a similar line thickness (this helps preserve unity in the design). Then I stamped the 3 dots from the Bold Blooms set a few times to pick up on the dot on the i.