Friday, May 19, 2017

Portrait of a Lady Elegant All-Occasion Card

Good Friday morning all. I took some "me time" yesterday to create a pretty card with Graphic 45's Portrait of a Lady 12" x 12" Patterns & Solids collection. As I've said before, this is my year to use up what I have and try to resist always buying new. So I'm happy to say this card is a great representation of my goals. The only new product used was the paper collection itself. Everything else was already in my stash.


The card measures 5" x 7", my go-to size for card making. I've incorporated Cricut cuts for those doily elements you see in the background (square is from Anna's Elegant Embellishments, round is from Close to my Heart's Artiste) and added pretty buttons (oh, I have SO SO many buttons) and shabby chic elements like the key and brad from Graphic 45.


I tend to buy buttons all the time, whether I have a project in mind or not. So I have TONS of buttons in my stash. These came from my local Hobby Lobby. 


And like many of you, I also have tons of ribbon. I used a golden, sheer wired ribbon here and affixed the stamped tag with ivory waxed twine. The stamp and tag are from PaperTreyInk. Very old, but classic!


The tiny leafy branch die is from Elizabeth Craft Designs. And that big, beautiful flower is from Petaloo, my favorite place to get the BEST flowers.


Another great way to use up papers and scraps is to decorate the inside of the cards you make. This one is very simple, but I was happy to use up the scraps and add this old Hampton Art stamp of a pretty teapot.


So that's just a quick share today. Thanks for popping in and have a fabulous weekend!



Friday, May 12, 2017

Take a tour of Palette & Paper of Indianapolis

I'm back from teaching at Palette & Paper in Indianapolis, and what a wonderful weekend it was. All went smoothly, the store was delightful, and the students were all so incredibly kind. Paul accompanied me on this trip and was able to spend time with an old friend while I was busy. He also scoped out downtown. So after my classes were over we stayed at The Alexander for two nights and explored the city while also enjoying our 25th anniversary! It was a great weekend.

I wanted to share a little video I created on my phone of Palette & Paper so you could experience what a quaint and delightful shop it is. The owner, Mare Mullineaux, is so sweet and accommodating and her store feels like a cozy home for friends to gather. Her husband Bill has helped with many handy fixtures in the spacious classroom. I hope you can get a sense of it from this video.





As we all know, shops like these have been disappearing over the years so it's important to remember that it's up to US as customers to support our local stores to keep them open. Sure the local craft store has coupons, and it's "easy" to simply order online, but it's the Mom & Pop stores like Palette & Paper that carry the specialty items for us. Products like Graphic 45, Stampers Anonymous, Prima and so much more.

Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Indianapolis, here I come!

For weeks I've been prepping for upcoming classes. I used to think it was the glamorous life to travel teach, but it's a lot of work! You've got to be on the ball (ahead of the ball really. But it's always fun to teach in new stores and get to meet new Graphic 45 fans.

Now I'm wrapping up all the details for my first teaching gig of the year (...had to cancel Canada. Long story.) in Indianapolis next weekend at Palette & Paper. Paul will be joining me on this trip since it's our anniversary weekend. He also has a college friend who lives there he can visit. So it should be a fun trip for both of us.

Palette & Paper is hosting a weekend of fun for National Scrapbook Day 2017 and I'm honored to part of the celebration! Friday evening, we'll be making this fun Midnight Masquerade treasure box.



Saturday we'll be making this big beautiful Portrait of a Lady album filled with interactive pages, pockets, pull-outs, and envelopes. What a special Mother's Day gift this would make! Or wedding, or birthday, or graduation...


Sunday afternoon, we'll create this lovely Nature Sketchbook mixed media album/planner. I've included ephemera cards, chipboard, die-cut flowers, policy envelopes and printed monthly pages to use as a calendar or planner. 


I've also got a cute make-n-take up my sleeve for the weekend. So if you're in the Indianapolis area and would like to join me, register with Palette & Paper QUICKLY, as there is limited space available for these classes. REGISTER HERE.


Thanks for popping in. I'll be sharing my travels with you on my Instagram, Facebook and Twitter next weekend, so be sure to follow me! Links are in the righthand column of my blog.


Have a great week!


Monday, April 17, 2017

Crazy Dogs Happy Wishes Card

I've only played with my Crazy Dogs stamp set from Stampers Anonymous once. I love this set, but haven't made time to play with it until this past weekend. I wanted to make a super cheerful Easter card for a friend, and incorporate the new Distress Oxides too. So today I thought I'd share how I made it...


First I got out my Distress Oxides and decided which colors I'd like to use. Then I cut a 6 3/4" x 4 3/4" piece of Ranger Mixed Media Cardstock. After smooshing the colors onto my non-stick craft mat (directly from the open ink pads) and spritzing them with water until I got nice beads, I then dipped and tapped my cardstock into the colors, moving around a bit and taking a peek each time I lifted it. Notice I said dip and tap. I've found Oxides give them best effect if I just softly dip and tap around into the colors. Once I was happy, I heated it dry with my Heat-it tool.


I grabbed two more colors (darker ones this time) and repeated the steps. 


After looking at it, I decided to add more Worn Lipstick (my current favorite Oxide) and then I was happy.


To fill in those open spaces, I stenciled more Worn Lipstick here and there. I love this new Ornate stencil from Stampers Anonymous. It's so pretty.


Next, I stamped these cuties from the Crazy Dogs set using Jet Black Archival ink onto the same Mixed Media Cardstock then fussy cut each one out. I used my water brush and my new Transparent Watercolours by Talens. They are so intense and easy to work with, and the water brush is neater than a paintbrush and cup of water. I enjoyed coloring and shading all these fun pieces. You'll notice I also stamped some accessories for my dogs from the Crazy Things stamp set.


Putting a hat on a dog is never easy, but a snip or two with my scissors was all I needed to get my hat around those puppy ears.


Same goes with this guy's hat. Doesn't that bow tie look so cute too?


Now the fun of layering everyone onto the card.


I used foam tape to pop up my two outer doggies.


I added Happy Wishes to the top left of the card, but it didn't seem to stand out enough...


...so I went in with a gray marker and created some shadows to help it out.


This card just makes me smile, it's so goofy and crazy and fun.


I hope you enjoyed this quick and easy tutorial. Have a great week and thanks for popping in!


                                       
                                       







Thursday, April 6, 2017

Strawberry Box Card

Time for some more Cricut fun! I totally love SVGCuts.com projects, and found this cute strawberry box card on their site in the Box Cards SVG Kit. I purchased the kit a few weeks ago. (You may remember the St. Patrick's Day box card I posted here.) I like to spend my spare time either art journaling or creating a fun, easy Cricut project like this. Two very different things, but both creative outlets.

I love using Graphic 45 papers for my Cricut projects, because - duh - they make the BEST papers in the industry. Here I've used an older collection, Time to Celebrate. Such a cheery, bright collection perfect for Spring, birthdays, or anything happy! This little strawberry box card was so fun and easy to make, I just had to share.



I simply downloaded the SVG file to my computer then imported it into Design Space and started cutting all the pieces. I used Poppy cardstock from Close To My Heart for the box pieces, plus I cut the box pieces a second time with a Topiary green cardstock. You'll see why in a moment.


Assembly is easy. And SVGCuts supplies a tip sheet with every file. I love to print them out in color and keep them in a notebook for future reference. Here I've begun to adhere the papers to the box.


Then flipped it over for the flaps that'll show from the top of the box.



I used the Topiary green cardstock pieces as my base for my insert panel assembly, then layered the Poppy cardstock handle in place, along with all the strawberries and leaves.


The white flowers are next with a dot of yellow from my Pearl Paint Pen. I set that aside to dry while I had some lunch.


After all the papers were on the box, I assembled it. 


Then it's just a matter of bending the insert panels on the score lines and adhering them in place. SVGCuts includes the numbers 1 - 5 on the cuts so you get them in the right order, working front to back. They make it super simple!


I grabbed a coordinating chipboard tag and stamped my sentiment, then adhered it to the front of the box. It all came together in less than 2 hours. The whole thing folds flat and fits into an envelope, which, of course, is also included in the SVG file. Gotta love that.


Thanks for popping in. I'd love to know if YOU use a cutting machine like a Cricut, Silhouette, etc? I hardly ever used my Cricut machine for the first few years, but now that the Explore is wireless and I can control my designs in Design Space, I find that I use it all the time.


Tuesday, March 28, 2017

Artsy Card with Dina Wakley Media

A dear friend of mine who has been in remission for many years recently learned she has cancer again. It hurts my heart so. As a friend, what can I do? I remember she told me once how she loved getting cards during the most difficult times so I created a special, artsy card this morning using only paints, inks, stamps and stencils. No flowers, no ribbon, just art. I hope it brightens her day just a little. Let me share how I made it. A complete product list is at the end of the post.


My finished card measures 4 3/4" x 6".


Begin by squeezing a few colors onto a Gelli Plate. I love Dina Wakley Media heavy-body acrylic paints.


Spread the colors with a brayer just enough to blend, not mix completely, then use a painter's comb like this, or any other texture tool to make a pattern in the paint.


Cut a 4 1/4" x 5 1/2" piece of Mixed Media Cardstock and press one into the Gelli Plate (left photo). If you're happy, stop. I wanted a lighter, more artsy look, so I spritzed the Gelli Plate with water and pressed a second piece of cardstock into it. (right photo) This is better!


Squeeze paint onto a non-stick craft sheet and use a blending foam tool to lightly pick up some color. Gently blend the color through a stencil along the right edge of the cardstock. I used Stampers Anonymous Flourish stencil.


Repeat with another color and stencil in the upper left corner. I used Dina Wakley's Four Women stencil.


Stamp an image and sentiment with Jet Black Archival ink. This fun stamp is from Dina's Fashion Forward set. I found this at my local Hobby Lobby!


If desired, paint in the girl. I painted only her skin because I liked the texture and color behind her clothes. I had some leftover paint on my craft sheet so I brushed some onto a stamp from Dina's Texture set and stamped it below the face.


On another piece of cardstock I brushed dry strokes of the paint colors left over on my craft sheet. This will be for the inside of my card.


Stencil some hearts with a bold color. I did this on the inside as well. Also, I cut a wavy piece from my original Gelli print for the sentiment inside. Nothing goes to waste!


Stamp images in the lower left corner, if desired, and inside your card. I used Watering Can Archival ink for my flowers. These are from Stampers Anonymous new Flower Jar set. I also layered some pale pink stamping from the Textures stamp set in various areas.


The middle of my card seemed a little empty so I punched some flowers out of the original Gelli print and adhered them flat. I also went over the stamped lady with my Fude Ball pen where I had painted over those lines earlier.


I mounted both the front and the inside pieces to a compatible pink cardstock (Smoothie, from Close To My Heart) then adhered that unit to a black card.


Here's the finished card once again. Now I'm off to make an envelope and pop this in the mail.

Thanks for stopping in today. I hope you have a fabulous day!
                                       
                                       

Friday, March 17, 2017

St. Patrick's Day Box Card

The holiday of St. Patrick's Day is a funny one. I want to celebrate it, but I'm only a tiny bit Irish so it doesn't really hold a lot of meaning for me. Rather than "celebrate" it, I enjoy making St. Patrick's Day cards for my Irish friends. And although the box card craze is probably passé by now, I still enjoy making them from time to time. Today I'm sharing a quick tutorial on how I made my St. Patrick's Day box card.


My box card started with Graphic 45's "Off To The Races" papers, both the Patterns & Solids, and the 12" x 12" paper pad plus one sheet of bright green cardstock. I've used an SVGCuts file for my cutting from their Box Cards Kit, but you can make box cards easily with a trimmer and scoring stylus. You won't get those cute bracket cuts on the flaps, but it'll still be pretty in the end. Simply cut your cardstock base 11 3/8" x 5 3/4". Score vertically at every 2 3/4" until you have 3/8" left over. Turn the piece a quarter turn and score one long score at 2 7/8" all the way down. Cut away 1 1/8" from the tops of three of the flaps and make a slit between each until you get to the score line.


If you're using the SVG file, the paper pieces are all included. Simply choose the papers you want and send them through your cutting machine. I use the Cricut Explore and always use the German Carbide blade for the cleanest cut. If you're cutting your own papers, cut three at 2 1/2" x 2 5/8", three at 2 1/2" x 1 1/2" for the flaps, and one tall one at 2 1/2" x 5 1/2". Adhere these to the base as shown. This will be the outside of your box and the flaps will fold down.


Flip the whole thing over and cut more papers for the inside of the box. I didn't cut any of the squares on mine, but you could.


The two inner supports are also included in the SVG file, but if you're cutting your own, simply cut two cardstock strips at 4 1/2" x 1" then score 7/8" from each end. Fold inward as shown. The SVG file I used had flowers, but I wanted clovers, so I searched and found that I owned these clover clusters in my purchased images. They came from Close To My Heart's newest cartridge called "Flower Market." I cut three and assembled them. Now is also the time to do any fussy cuts or added elements. You'll see that I punched some additional clovers to fill in spaces later.


I added a quick tracing of green silk microfine glitter from Elizabeth Craft Designs around my clovers. I used a green marker for shading and I inked the edges of the white buds with Vintage Photo Distress Ink.


Now it's time to assemble the box. See that green tab on the inside? You won't see that once you fill in all the stuff later, but if this bothers you you could always adhere that large paper over the top of it after you've assembled, rather than beforehand like I did.


After you've adhered some elements to the back wall of the box, you can add those "supports" to the inside. I found it easier to adhere the supports separately, then add the "filler" elements to those supports afterwards so I could see where things needed to stagger. But you may prefer to adhere them to the supports first. Up to you.


Keep layering elements and checking the fullness until you're happy. The four-leaf clover punch I used is from Martha Stewart Crafts. (I just checked and looks like this punch is rather old and therefore rare. Saw it on eBay for as much as $88! So use whatever you have available to you.) To finish up, I stamped a sentiment, added some ribbon and then some green gems.


The best part about this box card is it folds FLAT and can be mailed! I gave this one to my parents yesterday, as they treated us to a delicious Irish meal of Corned Beef and Cabbage. I loved the look on their faces when they popped open the card and it turned into this pretty box!


Oh, and by the way, the envelope is also included in that SVG file. I can't wait to make some more of those great projects in that bundle. Stay tuned because some of those are perfect for Springtime crafts and Easter projects. 


Meanwhile, have a great weekend, and as always, thanks for stopping in today.