Monday, August 29, 2016


My sweetie's birthday is looming and as always, I do a chess-themed card for him . . .

The die cut silver chess pieces didn't show up as much as I would have liked, so I darkened  them up a bit to make them stand out more.  As for the tassel, there's just something about these decorative trims that seems to go well with chess themes.  Plus I'm always game for an added touch of whimsy . . . happily, my guy is always up for anything fun!

Cardstock:   Marcos  100# Jute, Beckett Candlelight, Generic Silver
Stamps:        100 Proof Press Checkerboard, Creative Catalyst Twill
Inks:               Hero Black
Dies:              Memory Box Mini Checkmate, Alphabet Soup, Cheery Lynn
                           Flourish Band
Emb Folder: Spellbinders Burlap
Doo Dads:    Wink of Stella Silver, Black, Black brad, tassel

Thursday, August 25, 2016

Wish Big!

The lure of those extraordinary dried die ink powders is always flitting about in my mind.  So today, I had fun giving in to the promise of a wildly colorful adventure . . .

After die cutting the watercolor cardstock layer, I tapped on the merest puff of the powders in rainbow order using four colors.  Then I misted until I liked the look:  a little softened blending but still lots of strong stippling.  Part of the fun with the dried die powders is never knowing exactly what you're going to get. 

Gotta love a colorful adventure!

Cardstock:   Strathmore Watercolor paper, Beckett Candlelight
Stamps:        Lost Coast Music, My Favorite Things Distressed Patterns,
                           Too Much Fun “Wish Big”
Inks:               Color Burst die powders Merlot, Burnt Orange, Yellow Ochre,
                           Terre Verte, Liquid Metals Yellow Gold, Hero Black
Emb Powder:  Judikins Detail Black
Dies:              Avery Elle Wonky Stitches, Ultimate Crafts Magnolia Borders,
                           My Favorite Things Tag Builder 5
Doo Dads:    Making Memories ribbon Green gingham, American Crafts
                           Jute White, USArt Quest Crystal Effectz: Gold Essence,                                       Inkssentials Enamel Accents: Black

Monday, August 22, 2016

Boy Howdy

When a truly wonderful friend up and decided to quit her job over ongoing and un-fixable issues at work, it was an exceedingly painful break.  But it was eminently the right one . . .

I thought that a card in serene green with a few battered edges would capture some of the significant aspects of this major event.  But best of all is the spot-on sentiment by Technique Junkies:  it's as if they wrote it just for my friend.  Love it when that happens!

Cardstock:   Bazzill Pear, Leapfrog, Generic Pale Green
Stamps:        Stacy Stamps Antique Lace, Technique Junkies “Boy Howdy”
Inks:               Marvy Jungle Green
Emb Powder:   Vippies Transcendence
Dies:              Technique Tuesday Torn Spiral Edge, Stampin’ Up
                           Spiral Notebook, Spellbinders Fleur de Lis Squares
Doo Dads:    Glossy Accents, ¼" satin ribbon

Thursday, August 18, 2016

It's Your Day!

More fun with harlequin shapes – this time in the form of accent pieces . . .

As this is a guy card, I initially hesitated to use the floral tapestry background.  But the Kraft and black colors plus the strong shapes of the diamonds made a neat contrast to the tapestry background.  I thought it worked well and I hope he likes it too!

Cardstock:   Marcos #110 Jute, Bazzill Raven
Stamps:        Great Impressions Floral Vine, Stampin’ Up “It’s Your Day”
Inks:               Hero Black, ColorBox Black
Emb Powder:   Judikins Detail Black
Dies:              Spellbinders A2 Curved Matting Basics B, Classic Diamonds,
                           Penny Black Diamond Border
Emb Folder: Darice Wire Fence
Doo Dads:    Martha Stewart glitter Onyx, Stamp Oasis Heat & Stick
                           embossing powder, Kemper Tools Splatter Brush, 
                           Liquitex Gesso Black, Enamel Accents Black

Monday, August 15, 2016

Freaking Awesome

My favorite (and only) niece Becky is marking her 15th year at her law office job in sunny rainy downtown Seattle today . . .

Having made it through various upheavals and transitions through the years, she's shown herself to be a tenacious survivor and a team player.  I really hope her bosses know how lucky they are to have her on board . . .

Meanwhile, a row of colorful city buildings seemed like a fun idea.  With all of the Northwest's wet weather, a rainbow-colored cityscape probably happens more often than one would think . . .

Cardstock:   Bazzill Raven, Strathmore Ultimate White, Generic Matte Silver
Stamps:        Hero Clouds, Neat and Tangled On the Corner
Inks:               ColorBox Black, Ancient Page Aegean Blue
Emb Powder:   Judikins Detail Black
Dies:              Spellbinders Row Houses, Mama Elephant Peek-A-Frame,
                           Neat and Tangled On the Corner, Fiskars punches Cloud
 Watercolors:   Inktense Poppy Red, Sienna Gold, Cadmium Yellow,
                            Apple Green, Iris Blue; Zig Clean Color Geranium Red,
                            Orange, Yellow, Light Green, Cobalt Blue

Thursday, August 11, 2016


A few years ago, I collected a heap of harlequin images because I simply fell in love with that classic design element.  When I recently realized I hadn't used any of them in a good while, it was time to dive back into my stash of "argyles"  and have some fun . . .

 This card uses three varieties of the harlequin shape, which I love as much as I ever did.  More to come for sure . . .

Cardstock:   Marcos 110# Jute, Bazzill Raven
Stamps:        Stampin’ Up Distressed Harlequin, Judikins Harlequin,
                           Angel Co Speckle, Impression Obsession Tag Set,
                           Wplus9 Label Layers 4: “Celebrate”
Inks:               Hero Black
Colored Pencil:   Prisma White
Dies:              Lil Inkers Stitched Mats: Squares, DieNamics Wonky
                           Stitched Rectangle Stax, Studio Calico Nested Rectangles,
                           Penny Black Diamond Border, Impression Obsession Tag Set
Doo Dads:    Martha Stewart Glitter Onyx, May Arts Jute Black

Monday, August 8, 2016

Deepest Sympathy

Recently, Heather Nichols (Design Team Member on the Papertrey Ink site) showed how you can get lovely color on Kraft cardstock.  Here are two examples showing my take on her idea . . .

Stamp the image first in white ink and heat dry.  Then overstamp with your chosen color(s).  Off-setting the second stamping just a smidge will produce a misty look along with a sliver of white alongside your images.  This will help to set them off against the dark-ish Kraft.

This is most effective when images having a lot of solid area are used . . .

1st card:
Cardstock:   Bazzill Lilac, Marcos 110# Jute, Generic printed vellum
Stamps:        Rubbernecker Flowers in the Breeze, “In Our Thoughts”
Inks:              Distress Dusty Concord, Forest Moss, Old Paper, Papertrey
                          Ink Fresh Snow
Emb Powder:   Vippies Transcendence
Dies:              Lil Inkers Stitched Mats Rectangles, Tim Holtz Labels,
                           Paper Smooches Butterfly Duet
Doo Dads:    Viva Pearl Pen Ice White

2nd card:
Cardstock:   Bazzill Forget Me Not, Marcos 110# Jute, Generic printed
Stamps:        Hero Blooming Meadow, Alias Smith & Rowe “With
                           deepest sympathy”
Inks:               Distress Dusty Concord, Forest Moss, Old Paper, Papertrey
                            Ink Fresh Snow
Emb Powder:   Vippies Transcendence
Dies:              Lil Inkers Stitched Mats Rectangles, Tim Holtz Labels,
                           Paper Smooches Butterfly Duet
Doo Dads:    Viva Pearl Pen Ice White

Thursday, August 4, 2016


Today is my middle brother Don's big day – Happy Birthday, Bro!

As Don lives in Southern California, I thought it would be fun to introduce a little South of the Border flavor along with a few Aztec-style patterns along the left side. 

The background has been textured with Papertrey Ink's Linen impression plate and I hope the camera picks it up:  it's a subtle touch makes the cardstock echo the kind of texture you would find on an adobe building.  And at our ages, Don and I are kinda textured too, so hey – it works!

Cardstock:   Bazzill Kachina, The Paper Cut Watercolor paper
Stamps:        Stamp Diva Spiral Border, Creative Mode Dot Border,
                        Red Rubber Designs Running Stitches, KK Originals Mi Casa
                           Adobe Apartment, Stampin’ Up Glorious Grunge
Inks:               ColorBox Frost White, Black
Emb Powder:   Sweet Stamps Fine Detail White, UTEE Black, Judikins
                                 Detail Black
Watercolors:    Peerless Robin’s Egg Blue, Myrtle Green, Chrome Orange,
                                Burnt Umber, Forget Me Not Blue   
Dies:              DieNamics Mini Pennants, Die Versions text: A Hint of Lime
Impr Plate:    Papertrey Ink Linen

Monday, August 1, 2016

Happily Ever After

I never know exactly what is going to pop up in front of me and jumpstart a card.  Inspiration has a variety of triggers and staying open to many sources of creativity is a good thing.  This card started off with the embossed leaf background . . .

I found some dies whose shapes were similar to the embossed leaves, so I cut two of those.  Then I found the leafy border die in a drawer I hadn't been able to get open without a hernia threatening to undo me.  After a determined struggle, I took it to a cabinetmaker who went to work on the sides with a serious sander, and now I can get at a bunch of cubes and bolios I haven't seen in years.

As I said, inspiration comes from many sources . . .

Cardstock:   Marcos #110 Jute, Bazzill Rain Forest
Stamps:        Judikins Mini Bolio Rough Lines, Stampers Anonymous
                           Newspaper Scraps Background, Simon Says Tilted
                           Banner Sayings
Inks:               VersaMark, Papertrey Ink Classic Kraft, Hero Black
Emb Powder:   Adirondack Moss
Dies:              Lil Inkers Stitched Mats: Rectangles, DieNamics Layered
                           Leaves, Spellbinders Signs of Spring (bird), Impression
                           Obsession Banners & Tails
Emb Folder: Ultimate Crafts Screen of Leaves
Doo Dads:    May Arts Jute