Monday, September 16, 2019

Sweet Beginnings


Blue Ribbon #5
I thought this fluffy baby owl perched in a tangle of pine branches would look nice resting on a quilt-look background . . .


With some more fluff coming from the fibers tied to the fold, this new little one should feel comfy and cozy right from the start . . .

Cardstock:   Bazzill Turquoise, Aquarelle Watercolor paper            
Stamps:       Impression Obsession Feathery Owl, Cloud 9 Stamp Baby
Inks:             ColorBox Frost White, Distress Dusty Concord, Faded
                     Jeans, Mustard Seed, Wild Honey, Brushed Corduroy
Emb Pwdr:   Judikins Opaque White
Dies:            Frantic Stamper Striped Frame & Insert, E-Scenery
                     Idyllic, Cheery Lynn Pine Branches
Doo Dads:    Eyelash fibers


Thursday, September 12, 2019

Beauty


Blue Ribbon #4
Although I prefer using faith-based art for Christmas and Easter cards, I also think there's always a place to showcase some of His magnificent creation . . .


This card features leaves, a pine spray, birch trees, two lovely cardinals, and a sprinkling of snow - a small display of His never-to-be-equaled, amazing handiwork.

Cardstock:   Bazzill Ash, Light Grey, Beckett Iceberg, Wausau
                     Firecracker Red, Generic scrap Black (plain and
                     marbleized
Stamps:       Stamp Zia "Beauty"           
Inks:             Ancient Page Stone Grey, Hero Black, Papertrey Ink
                     Chamomile, Distress Old Paper
Emb Pwdr:   Stampendous Shabby White, Vippies Transcendence
Dies:            Memory Box Tall Birch, Savvy Birch Trees, Marianne Birdcage
                     Die Set: Birds, Papertrey Ink Angled Labels                            
Punches:     Family Treasures and Punch Bunch Birch Leaves, McGill
                     Evergreen Sprig
Doo Dads:    Deckle edge scissors         


Monday, September 9, 2019

Weeds Will Win


Blue Ribbon #3
There's always room for humor, especially when the subject is weeds and one has to face the fact that the weeds will always win . . .


. . . the inside of the card reads, "The less you give a damn, the happier you will be."  That sentiment actually applies to a lot of situations in life, I find.

Being as we're dealing with weeds here, I figured some torn, rough edges would be suitable to the task.  I drew over a small cluster of dried pine needles with a black marker and put them off to the side to balance the Ironweed cluster.  Some sunset colors to suggest an end to a day of mostly futile weeding, and I think we're done here.

Cardstock:             Generic textured Tan, Strathmore Watercolor paper
Stamps:                  Chapel Road Western Ironweed, “Make no
                               mistake . . .”
Inks:                       Distress Barn Door, Wild Honey, Mustard Seed,
                               Stormy Sky, Brushed Corduroy, ColorBox Black
Emb Powder:         Judikins Detail Black
Brayer:                   Fiskars Mesh                       
Doo Dads:              Dried Pine Needles

Thursday, September 5, 2019

Happy Anniversary


Blue Ribbon #2
I became enamored of the many fascinating and creative aspects of acetate a few years ago and this is one of two cards using acetate scraps that I submitted to the Fair.  I've saved all of the unscratched acetate packaging that was used for dies and other craft items I've bought and while it won't withstand a heat gun, it's perfect for making light, floaty layers . . .


Acetate allows you to elevate designs above the background which can make for interesting shadows.  But you will need to figure out a supportive arrangement of embellishments so that you can hide the foam pop dots behind them in order to keep the acetate suspended over the background.  You can also use decorative elements for support directly on the background which are designed to be visible and part of the layout.  In this case, black pearls did the job nicely . . .

Cardstock:   Bazzill Raven, Vanilla, Marcos Jute, Scrap Black,
                     Acetate
Stamps:       Hero “Happy Anniversary”, Designer Woodgrain,
                     Silhouette Grass, Stamp Camp Tiger Marble
Inks:             ColorBox Silver, StazOn Cotton White, Hero Shadow
                     Soft Brown, Distress Antique Linen
Emb Pwdr:   Delafield Silver
Dies:            Stampin’ Up Lakeside Framelets, Memory Box Pine
                     Needle Border
Doo Dads:    Silver webbing spray, Distress Stickles Black Soot,
                     pearls Black, McGill and Marvy punches Butterflies

Monday, September 2, 2019

Feel Better Soon


As promised in early August, today is the first of eight posts featuring the eight cards I submitted at the NJ State Fair.  As evidenced in the photo below, I did all right in the blue ribbon department!


State fairs are lots of fun to participate in and the entry fees are usually cheap.  So if you haven't dipped your rubber stamper toes into the water yet, what are you waiting for?  
Take the plunge! 

Now onto the cards and comments . . .

Blue Ribbon #1
I find that a wood grain pattern - whether stamped, die cut, stenciled, or embossed - seems to go with just about any card layout out there . . .


. . . wood patterns provide warmth, texture, and a visually familiar feel to a wide variety of design themes.

This delicate butterfly looks perfectly at home on the wood-look panel, and with her wings propped up with foam dots, she looks as though she's just arrived and will stay awhile to bring a little peaceful comfort to someone who's under the weather . . .

Cardstock:   Bazzill Steel Blue, Marcos Jute               
Stamps:       Too Much Fun "Feel Better Soon"          
Inks:             Distress Brushed Corduroy, Stormy Sky, Perfect Pearls
                     Mist Pearl
Emb Pwdr:   Vippies Transcendence
Dies:            Spellbinders Blossom Tags & Accents, Memory Box
                     Butterflies Darla, Vivienne                          
Impr Plate:   Papertrey Wood Grain            
Doo Dads:    Gauze ribbon, pearls, Jelly Roll pen Clear Star



Thursday, August 29, 2019

Bottom of My Heart


The background is the technique focus for this one . . .


A recent blog post by artist and stamper Kristina Werner got me all wound up and I just had to try out this clever idea.

It involves water coloring with a mortise die cut from shelf liner!  Watch her video and see if you can resist - happily, I couldn't.  However, beware, as brands differ.  I went to Wal Mart to pick up some repositionable shelf liner and bought the Duck brand.  Duck makes a line of wonderful products - however, not for this purpose.  The vinyl is too tough for any of my three machines to cut it, regardless of the use of countless shims and my metal plate. 

So I got smart and followed the link provided by Kristina in her post.  The manufacturer is Kittrich, available from Amazon, and it cuts like a dream.  And to set your fears at rest, it absolutely will not tear your cardstock.  It's hard to believe that something that sticks so beautifully will remove so easily. 

Check out the sharp outlines on the leaves - not one bit of seepage to be found anywhere.  TIP:  after peeling off the release paper, lay it down on your cardstock, top with a sheet of typing paper, and burnish well with your fingertips to make sure all edges are pressed down. 

Then, watercolor with total confidence.  After you're finished, peel off the mortise and stick to a piece of acetate.  Then rinse off the ink and blot dry.  The glue is still good and I'm hoping to get several uses out of it. 

I plan to keep the Kittrich within grabbing distance of my table - this is too much fun and too easy to not keep at the ready . . .


Cardstock:   Bazzill Kachina, Strathmore #90 Watercolor paper      
Stamps:       Wordsworth Bottom of My Heart
Inks:             Distress Lucky Clover
Watercolors:   EK Paint Disc Blue, Green
Emb Pwdr:   Hero White
Dies:            Tim Holtz Labels; Punches: Ek Success Heart, Martha
                     Stewart Branches  
Doo Dads:   Joy Pearls Turquoise, Kittrich Repositionable Shelf Liner         

Monday, August 26, 2019

Journey


Inspired by a wonderful card sample posted by Virginia Lu, I had a great time using innumerable postoids and other stamps to put this one together . . .


Calm colors, an old fashioned and nostalgic feel, a bit of embossing, and a flower all came together to create a layout with a 1920's travel theme.  As a former Flight Attendant, this one ought to bring back lots of interesting memories for Vangie!

Cardstock:   Marcos Jute, generic Black, Beckett Moonlight
Stamps:       Starving Artistamps Lil’ Squares Background, Hero
                     Etched Flower with Stems, Stampers Anonymous
                     Mosaic Fragment, Skeleton Leaf, Rubber Tree 
                     Egyptian Map, unknown “Journey”, various Postoids 
                     too numerous to mention
Inks:             ColorBox Frost White, VersaFine Vintage Sepia, Distress
                     Brushed Corduroy, Old Paper, Antique Linen, Fired Brick
Emb Pwdr:   B’Muse Eggshell
Imprs Plate: Cheery Lynn Desert Floor
Dies:            Wplus9 Banner Trio
Doo Dads:    White fabric flower, black brad