A Little Note (scrappy card)

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I’m still working on cards using up some of my many, many scraps of paper.  Some of these papers are too cute to toss and they can’t stay on my desk forever so I simply have to increase my card output to make space for yummy new papers…(I’m addicted, I admit it!)

This card is my favourite so far this week.  Not a huge surprise since it uses my favourite Carolyn Gavin paper and an Anna Wight image.  The perfect combination!  I don’t know if it’s the pattern or the fact that I’m an earth-tone kind of gal but I do love this paper!

My sewing machine is making another appearance.  I haven’t had any issues with it so far so I can tell you it was worth the money but I have to admit I wonder how long the machine will last due to the affordability (a.k.a. it was cheap) of the unit.  I used the zig zag stitch on this one.  I find that a bit trickier to use because there’s no guide on the machine so my paper bounces around a little bit but it does add a lot to the card.

Cute, hey?  I added a funky little flower using a nice Making Memories brad and 3 flowers that I punched out of the patterned paper I used on the card.  I just punch the shapes, poke a hole in the centre and then crumple up the papers before threading them on to the brad.  It’s not as elaborate as some of the flowers I’m seeing on cards these days (and kudos to the ladies that have the patience to make those wonderful embellishments) but I’m a quick and simple crafter. (translation: I am NOT a patient person!)

I have a couple of orders to take care of for clients and need to get started on them but I hope to have time to squeeze in one more scrappy card tomorrow.

Thanks for stopping by!

You Make Me Happy

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This stamp set makes me happy…it’s Little Critters (Whipper Snapper) by Anna Wight.  I have a major soft spot for cute animal stamps.  Elephants are my favourite so it was only natural to reach for this cute little guy (or girl) when making my card today.

I’m trying to use up some scraps of paper that are too cute to toss.  I have lots of not-so-cute scraps too and have given loads of them away to a co-worker’s daughters but it’s hard to purge as much as you need to. (major project some day – I’ll have to enlist a friend (you reading this Karen?) to help me toss the outdated stuff and stuff that just isn’t my style)

So, my first scrappy card of the week (I’ll be making at least 3) is this little guy:

I’m using some K&Co paper from two different paper pads – they are similar pads though so don’t pat me on the back too much.  One’s a mat stack and one is paper so the thickness on the papers is a little different.

I matted the entire front of the card base with the same cardstock.  I think it’s a nice look and it adds a lot of depth to the card.  I ran the front panel through my Pixie and distressed the edges and sponged some Vintage Photo ink all around the panel. (I’ve had my Vintage Photo ink pretty much since I started stamping…)

My image was watercoloured using SU ink and an aquapainter and I glued the sentiment to the front of the image – not really sure why but after trying it all over the card I decided that’s where it needs to live (I made this card “on the fly” so I didn’t have a pre-planned layout)

A couple of custom dew drops finish off the card – I was going to try to incorporate ribbon but it just didn’t happen (my ribbon collection isn’t the greatest.  I have ribbon but it never seems to match anything I make.)

I’m going to try to use kraft cardstock as the base for all the scrap cards I make this week – and I’ll also use the same stamp set.  That way I only have to focus on layout as I’ve already grouped together sets of patterns from my scrap stash that coordinate enough to use on the same card.

See you tomorrow!

New Dress

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I don’t often make shaped cards or cards with no stamping but sometimes I don’t have an appropriate stamp for a particular event and have to fall back on a tried and true design.

By no means did I create this design.  I got it on SCS a couple of years ago and have used it a few times – well, whenever I have to make a card for a girl’s christening.  It always gets rave reviews and it’s not that hard to make (the first time I made one I didn’t have nesties and almost broke my circle punch).  The only drawback is that there isn’t a lot of room inside for a verse.

(I used a blue background as I didn’t think my white dress would show up against my white background)

Each time I make one of these I can really see how much my stash of card-making supplies has grown.  This time around I’m fortunate enough to have pearls and a Prima rose to embellish the card.  I always use the Swiss Dots embossing folder one these dresses too…it adds so much texture to the card.  If you only own one embossing folder, this one is the most versatile (IMHO).

A little tip – emboss the front of the card before adding the embellishments but use a scoring tool (or something with a smooth tip) to gently press down the dots in the neckline area and the waistline area so you can adhere your collar and your ribbon without having the added parts sticking up off the card.

I’ll be making a few cards using some paper scraps later this week so check back for that…you can never have too many ideas for using up scraps!

The Pink Poodle

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When I was young I remember there was a place in St. John’s called “The Pink Poodle”…it could have been a lounge (as they were called back in the day) or a restaurant.  I’ll have to ask my mother if she remembers it when I visit her today for Mother’s Day.

I’m talking about pink poodles as I’ve got a card to share with you today using a new poodle stamp I picked up at M’s last week.  I overpaid for it, of course, but I won’t be ordering anything on line in the very near future (as I’ve just placed some orders…) so it was worth paying the extra dollar and a half per stamp while they are still in stock locally. (I paid $2.49 but you can usually find them on line for $1-$1.50)

It’s such a snooty little poodle that I had to colour it pink and I had to use glitter and a rhinestone on her bling.

I zigzag stitched the two patterned papers but I don’t know if you can see that in the picture.

I also custom coloured the papers as the pink was too pale and I wanted it to match my poodle a little better.  To do that I simply coloured over the paler pink on the paper (both patterns – the grey paper has some little pink dots on it) so it matched more closely.  That might sound like a lot of work but I used an SU marker and the pieces of paper aren’t really that big.

I also customized a Basic Grey button by coating it with a bit of glue and dusting it with glitter.  You can buy glittered buttons but it’s just as easy to make your own if you don’t mind waiting for the glue to dry.  Since I had the glue and the glitter on my worktop I decided to glitter around the sentiment circle so all three elements on the card have some sparkle.  Here’s a little close up of the poodle’s “bling”:

The yellow background was a bit boring so I spritzed some pretty in pink marker on the cardstock.  The spritzing wasn’t working very well so I added some ink to my marker (did you know you can refill your SU markers?) and gave it another go…

On a separate note, all the images/paper scraps are ready to mail – I threw in a couple of scraps of “masculine” paper from the “Boyfriend” collection in each envelope in addition to the other scraps.  If you do make a card with the image/paper I sent you, I’d love to see it!

For those of you who are mothers, I hope you’re having a wonderful Mother’s Day.

The More Candles…

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…the bigger the WISH!

Finally, a non-Mother’s Day card!  When I’m making seasonal cards I can get tired of them fairly quickly so I’m glad I’m done for this particular event. (I don’t find Christmas cards as bad but that’s probably because there are so many products geared towards that type of crafting)

This is (obviously) a card for a 60th birthday using a Stamping Bella stamp that I did NOT alter!  I have stamped this image before but never made a card with it because I wasn’t happy with the colours I chose so that turtle was scrapped.

I used Cosmo Cricket Material Girl paper (and some of you will be getting some samples of that shortly!) and the SU “Whimsical Words” set.  I didn’t really like a lot of the SAB offerings this year but this set was a must-have for me!

I know I’m over-doing it with the sentiment stamped on a scrap of distressed cardstock but I tend to come up with little techniques and keep using them until the novely wears off (after all, my cards are all going to different people – it’s just my readers that keep seeing the same old thing).

To embellish the tag, I used a Tim Holtz paper clip (they are very tiny) and a piece of certainly celery ribbon that I coloured with one of my (very few) copics.  It’s not exactly the right colour but it matches much better than the celery ribbon!

The turtle was stamped on watercolour paper (just the cheap stuff from Michael’s – that’s what I normally use) with Stampin Up reinkers and an aquapainter.  I used liquid appliqué on the cake frosting and paper pieced the party hat.

The “60” was computer-generated and I used some metal hardware from (I think) We R Memory Keepers.  I’ve had it for about two years and it’s really time to use it up.  I don’t intentionally hoard things (I used to!) but sometimes it’s hard to work older product into my current style.  That’s why it’s so important to use what you have while it’s still trendy and interesting to you…

Must dash…the first week back to work after a vacation is very energy-draining!

Mixing it Up – and FREE stuff!

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(Make sure you read all the way to the end!)

Sometimes, just reversing the papers you used on a card can give a dramatic change to the design.  In this case using the bolder paper as the background gives the card a lot of extra pop.

I’m still working on Mother’s Day cards and have a birthday card order to complete but I’m hoping to get some time for new designs this weekend (though it’s Mother’s Day on Sunday so some of my time will be spent with my mother plus I still have to get her a gift).

For now, here’s the variation on my last card and I’ve got an “offer” for you after that…

Here’s the offer…everyone who comments on this post by midnight on Thursday will receive a stamped copy of one of the images I used on my Mother’s Day cards this year (there are 4 choices – list follows).  They’ll also receive some paper scraps (not full sheets) from Cosmo Cricket and a Prima flower or two.  Here’s a sample of the type of “Happy Mail” I’m sending out:

You can choose your image (click on the name of the stamp to see the card I made with that image) so make sure you specify in your comment which one you want.  Papers and flowers will vary.  Image choices are:

Gardenia Gardenthumb – Stamping Bella (image has been modified to remove the wings)

Funky Potted Flowers – Stamping Bella (see today’s card above)

Hedgehog with flowers (Penny Black – image is not very large)

Dog with Rose  (Penny Black – it’s the one in the “sample” picture above)

Make sure you leave your email address so I can contact you for your snail mail.  If you also include your usual colouring method I’ll do my best to choose the best ink and paper to use for your medium of choice (i.e. if you use prisma pencils I’ll use Bella’s Bestest paper, if you watercolour I’ll stamp on watercolour paper, etc.)

Anyone can comment.  I’ll send happy mail anywhere!  Gotta get back to my card orders…

It’s What’s on the Inside…

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ETA: my personalized stamp was ordered from Staples about 5 years ago.  You do have an option to give them a graphic file (just bring in a jump drive and they’ll send the file off with your order)  My stamp is actually a graphic not text with a picture of a bee.  It took about 2 weeks to get the stamp back but I live in a more “remote” region of Canada so it might not take as long in a larger city.

Since this is a week of mass production for me (making the same 4 cards over and over for Mother’s Day) I don’t really have anything new to show you so I thought I’d talk about what I do with the inside and back of my cards and how I package them for sale.

I took random shots while I was making and packaging 5 cards tonight so the images won’t necessarily all belong to the same card (the card I did consistently take pics of is a bit dark for showing the process).

Once I’ve made a card I print the verse in MS Word (a tutorial can be arranged if anyone shows interest).  I cut the verse to size (1/8″ smaller than the inside) and use some leftover scraps of patterned paper for a quick decorative touch.  Here are some visuals (note: picture 3 is a different card):

This is a quick way to make the inside pop plus you don’t have to worry about how dark your cardstock is as the white is always highly visible.  It also gives you a way to cut down just a little more on the wasted patterned paper from your crafting!

As for the back of the card, I stamp it with the personalized stamp my husband designed and had made for me 5 years ago when I first started making (really bad) cards.  Once I’ve used that stamp I go back with some Karen Foster snap stamps (sadly discontinued a few years ago) and add my URL.  The back looks like this:

The final touch is putting an envelope with the card and packaging it in a clear bag (sorry for the glare – plastic is so hard to photograph!):

Using clear bags gives a really professional look to the cards and protects them from getting dirty prior to delivery.  When I make “random” cards to sell I print the verse on a slip of paper and pop in in the back of the envelope so you can read the verse without opening the plastic bag.  I use the same font as I used on the card so the customer knows what they are getting.

Before you ask, my clear bags (the A2 size) are from Dollarama but I haven’t seen them there for a while.  I also have 5X5 square bags that I bought in the UK last year (square cards are very popular in the UK…they have been for years and years – their store-bought cards are way nicer than North American cards).  I recently purchased some larger bags at 7kids – they fit my 5X6.5″ cards – no point in doing things halfway!

I’ll be back tomorrow with a variation on my most recent card and an interesting offer for some of you…be sure to check back!

A Thought Away

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My last Mother’s Day card for 2010…I went for a vintage look which is what all of my cards used to be like before I decided I was more into whimsical images.  I do love distressing paper (both by distressing the edges and by using the DTP technique) so it’s fun to go back to my roots now and then.

I used my newest paper – The Thrift Shop by October Afternoon.  This is the first paper I’ve owned by this company…I was tempted to get Farm Fresh but it was out of stock by the time I was ready to place an order from the States a few weeks ago – you snooze, you lose!

I do wish the paper was double-sided as that makes it so easy to match multiple patterns but the papers all coordinate in the pack so this isn’t a huge deal.  I also like that there are only 2 of each sheet as it gives you more variety in the package (17 designs – 34 sheets total).

I chose the stamp before choosing the papers as I wanted to use my other new “Bella” stamp on the card.  I specifically bought this for Mother’s Day/Feminine cards as I don’t have very many floral stamps in my stash (not my thing).  This is a “funky” image so it was easier for me to find inspiration using this stamp.  Here are the results:

The details:

The image is watercoloured.  No copics here! 

I used a nestie die to cut out the image and then antiqued the white paper with some Linen ink (Ranger).  I distressed the edges of the patterned papers and inked them up with the same linen ink.  The sentiment is a Sale-A-Bration freebie (my only one – I ordered just enought stuff to get this set) and I stamped it on So Saffron cardstock and then distressed, inked and crumpled the paper.  I put a stick pin (Dollarama) through the sentiment and taped the pointed end to the back of the cardstock.

No sewing on this card.  It is definitely the kind of card that would be enhanced by sewing but I focused on distressing this time around. 

Back to the grind tomorrow…

I’m Back (aka “Keep It Moist”)

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ETA:  I use a quickie glue pen when adhering glitter to small areas.  If I was glittering a button or other embellishment I’d use a white craft glue.

You’ll have to ignore the subtitle – it’s a private joke and isn’t as disgusting as it sounds…

So, the trip was good – and I’m sad that I have to go back to work on Monday but that’s life (and it’s how we pay for things like trips and stamping supplies so it’s a necessary evil).

I was actually back yesterday but wasn’t ready to spend quality time in my craft room.  I did manage to make a card today but it took HOURS and HOURS!!! (well, I made 3 but they are all the same)

While I was away, I spent a few days in Toronto and went to Stamping Bella “in person”.  I bought two stamps and the new “Thrift Shop” October Afternoon paper pack.  I was a bit disappointed in the number of stamps that were out of stock and the copic selection was quite sad but it was nice to be able to see the stamps in real life before purchasing (and Emily was there…she asked if I needed any help)  I will be sticking to on-line ordering in future.

One of the stamps I bought was called “gardenia gardenthumb”.  I keep wanting these stamps with people that sport wings – though I don’t want the wings.  As usual, I bought the stamp anyway and altered it to remove the wings.

I missed a couple of “wing bits” the first go but I now have a wingless image for future use.  The card I’m showing you today still has some remaining wing pieces – which are obvious to me now – but I never seem to be able to find them all until I colour a stamped image.

I used Cosmo Cricket paper (I plan to use the new October Afternoon stuff tomorrow) and my reinkers to colour the image.  The apron and gardening glove are paper pieced and all the flowers have been glittered using doodlebug and MS glitter (I don’t have any red doodlebug glitter)  The ribbon embellishment has been beefed up with a button and a circle punched out of the CC patterned paper.

Final touches include machine-stitching and a spritz (or three or four) with a blue marker.

So, what’s new with you?

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