Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Summer Card Camp 2 Wrap Up

What is true of clothes is also true of embellishments; keep them long enough and they will come back in style.  Unlike clothes, however, embellishments won't taunt you about how much weight you've gained in the intervening years. 

I like embellishments better.

Anyway, back when I first started crafting, the "in" thing was ric-rack.  Now it's chevrons.  Potato, potaaahto.

I used sketch #2 and the final color combo.  The top/small ric-rack was done by running an ink pad over white, wetting it down to get it to spread into the crevices, wiping off with a damp rag, and then letting it dry. 

All supplies are CTMH, though everything but the sentiment is retired.
  • Stamps:  Just a Number (sentiment), Friendship Blessings (flowers)
  • Embossing powder: White, Buttercup, Baby Pink
  • Ink pads: Sunflower (over white ric-rack), Sorbet (sentiment)
  • B&T paper: Baby Pink
  • Gem: Clear (colored with YR18 Copic)
Hint...you might want to measure your ric-rack before you cut it.  Just a thought.  My stitching around the edge doesn't quite get the short end.  Yeah...  This is why God invented TAPE!

Now it's time to head to the pool to see if I can keep my current wardrobe from taunting me.

Until next time,

Monday, July 29, 2013

Photo Editing with Picasa

One of my DT buddies from Color My Heart asked me to do a quick tutorial on photo editing.  If you are interested in making your pictures look better but haven't got the skill (or money) to get a professional program, I encourage you to download Picasa.  Here's the link: http://picasa.google.com/

It's free and takes about two minutes to download.  Once you have that done, come back here and we'll work this thing together.

One of the great things about Picasa is it will automatically pair up with picture/albums you already  have on your computer.  You don't need to separately load them to edit, and once you save your work, it updates the photos in your personal library, too.

The left side of your first screen will look like this:

The buttons on this screen which are in constant use are "Straighten" and "Crop".  When you click "Straighten" it will give you grid lines over the top of your photo and slide bar along the bottom.  As you slide the bar from L to R, your photo will tilt.  The grid lines will help you line up your photo.  This is great because sometimes I have to lean at a funny angle to get the photo of my card without hindering the light.  I just leave myself some room around the edges (because that's why God invented the "Crop" feature) to straighten it out.

The "Crop" feature will give you a drop-down menu for the size of the finished photo.  For cards I intend to link up to challenge blogs, I use the "Square/CD" option.  That way I end up with a final photo that fits those little pictures.  Once you choose the final photo size, place your cursor on the picture of your photo (which I'm not showing in these photos because I want you to see the icons clearly), click and hold your right mouse button, and drag the cursor to the size you want.  There are stretch buttons which will also be available to use as you fiddle with this.

Then I click the "I'm Feeling Lucky" button.  This doesn't always give me a better photo or get me where I want to go, but it's a good start.  Sometimes it's absolutely brilliant and does everything I need it to do with one click.  (The reason I don't start with this is because Picasa will "undo" in the order of your edits.  Straighten and Crop are non-negotiable.  If I can't get those to work, there's no point in going further.)

The second tab takes you to a screen that looks like this:

I am constantly fiddling with the light because, even if I get good natural light, my photos start out looking like this:

Now, before we go any further, I should show you my lightbox.

Oi!  Didn't realize my footie socks were there in the picture.  Well...this is how I live.  I think shoes are torture, and socks are a close second.  I don't know how many pairs of shoes I have kicked off under my desk at the moment.  I'm afraid to look. 


My paper is beginning to warp so I'll need to replace it, but as you can see, I cut a box, lined it with 12x12 cream paper, and set it near a window.  Voila, cheap and easy lightbox.

I encourage you to play around with these slide buttons even if "I'm Feeling Lucky" seems to have done the trick.  Also, be sure to test out the "Color Temperature" feature because warming up photos (slide to the R) is almost always a good thing.

I'm going to switch to the last tab, because it has the "Boost" feature on the top left.

To repeat, my usual method is to begin by straightening and cropping my photo.  I then try the "I'm Feeling Lucky" feature.  Sometimes I undo it, but sometimes I keep it and then do some more fiddling.  (There are no hard and fast rules so I actually started by hitting the "Lucky" button, then cropping, but you get the idea.)

Then comes "Boost" because it accents the colors.  Again, there is a slide bar so don't be put off by the first thing that shows up when you hit boost.  I often slide it to the L until there's almost no boost at all, but your eye will tell you when.  If this doesn't work, I undo "Boost" and go fiddle with the light and color temperature, then come back to boost and try it again.  None of these steps are hard and fast rules.  As you play with the features, you will start to get a feel for what they do and which ones to try first depending on your picture.

If I get one I really like, the next thing I'll do is "Sharpen".  It's on the third tab, top left.

Again, this will give you a slide bar.  I have learned not to go past the half-way mark on this because, as it sharpens the edges, it will make your photo grainy.  When you post a photo on your blog in "X-Large", those grains are annoying.  However, very few photos don't benefit from some sharpening. 

And last, but not least, is the Vignette feature.

The first screen it gives you will have a black outline.  If that doesn't float your boat, click on the "Vignette Color" and you will get a whole slew of other color options.

I chose gray for this photo.  As you hover your cursor over each color, it will show up on your photo.  Once you click the color, it will take you back to the screen which allows you to adjust the size, strength, and fade.  If none of the colors given make you happy, you can hover over the box with the rainbow of colors and a whole new box will appear. 

If you are so inclined, there are a number of other features including the option to add text (first tab), which is great if you intend to post to Pinterest, Splitcoast Stampers, or other online albums because you can add your name and blog address right onto the picture.

But I think you will agree that the difference between this...

...and this

...is worth the effort.

Until next time,

Sunday, July 28, 2013

Ok, Smile...

I'm home from almost a week of vacation.  It was great except it was during the last week of Summer Card Camp 2 and I hardly got to participate.  Today, instead of doing laundry like I should, I've watched all the videos to catch up and made one card.  It goes along with Week 3, Day 1 and uses sketch 2.

I stamped Kraft paper with a variety of patterns beginning with White pigment ink then overlaying with colored dye ink.  I then stamped the balloon on the back side of the Kraft/stamped paper and cut it out.  After I stamped the balloon in white, I rolled my stamp in Sky and stamped over the top.  I then used a sponge dauber to hit the edges.  The polka dot balloon was overstamped in white pigment again because the Gypsy ink was too bold.  After dotting the sequins around, I decided the balloons needed an additional layer of shine so I squirted the glitter glue into a puddle and used a paint brush to apply.

The supplies are all CTMH unless otherwise noted.
  • Stamps:  Sightseer, Artiste Collection Birthday, Jingle Borders and It's Your Day
  • Ink:  White Daisy (pigment), Gypsy, and Sky
  • Patterned Paper: Laughing Lola (available August 1)
  • Embossing: SU White Detail and Versamark ink
  • Accessories: Sequins (Hobby Lobby), brown embroidery thread, Studio G Glitter Glue, PC948 Sepia Prismacolor pencil (hand-drawn border)
I think I might have time to squeeze one more card in under the wire for uploading to the student gallery.

Until next time (which could be a matter of hours),

Friday, July 26, 2013

Color Dare 53 (and the patience of Job)

Okay...so I'm taking the Online Card Class called Summer Card Camp 2.  Day two had a very cool technique with masking off portions of a large sentiment to stamp words in different colors.  I've had an idea running around in my head about something similar using the chevron from CTMH's In the Background using this weeks Color Dare of Gypsy, Blush, and Sorbet.  I'm also entering it in the Moxie Fab: Birthday Challenge.

This technique required the patience of Job to achieve.  My original idea was to do each stripe of the chevron with a different color so the pattern would be the regular chevron but with individual stripes of the three colors.  It took me one layering to decide that wasn't going to work out.  Instead, I masked off all but the top stripe and stamped so the points of the chevron met in a diamond pattern.  I did all of one color and then worked the next.  It was a lot of work for background paper, but at least I'll be able to sleep at night now I've executed the idea.  Anyone else toss and turn with crafty goodness keeping you awake?

By the time I got one layer done, I had to trim off edges where the pattern didn't fully form.  What was left just looked like it needed to be a banner.  I went into my CASE file and pulled this card from Debby Hughes.  The second banner is cut from an old CTMH pack called Caboodle

I decorated the inside of the card for two reasons:  1) Pam Korte of our CMH Design Team has been doing a lot with it lately and encouraging us to "finish" cards, and 2) because I messed up the inside sentiment and fixing it required an extra layer of work.  I like reason #1 better; let's stick with that. 

After working so hard at the background, I thought I'd take a shortcut on the sentiment (CTMH Card Chatter-Birthday) and carefully ink up each word with the different colors.  The result was a faded "Hooray" at the point where the "Hip, hip" got really close.  I ended up masking off the top words and restamping "Hooray" again, which is why there's a bit of a shadow effect.  Okay...not the best, but it's okay.  (And not worth redoing the whole thing since I stamped the sentiment last over the top of a fully assembled and glued down circle.  Why do I do that to myself???)  Having learned my lesson, I decided to ink up just the "it's your" on the inside and stamp "BIRTHDAY" separately.  Which I then stamped crooked, hence the popped up overlay of "BIRTHDAY".  Yeah...  But, add a stitched border that matches the front of the card, and it looks like I planned it that way.

The Blush edge around the circle sentiment on the front of the card is from CTMH Connections (retired).  The sequins are actually white and colored with a Copic.  I'm not sure which color because I did them a while back just to see if I could.  The buttons were from my loose, fell-off-something-I-wore-at-some-point-in-the-distant-past baggie.  I used deckle edge scissors around the sentiment circle and the inside border.

In the future, I will use this technique on straight line stamp images.    Unless I see a curvy one that would be fairly easy.  Or maybe I could use Washi tape instead of post it notes.  It would curve or fit in small...

Straight!  Straight...do you hear me, straight!

Until next time,

Saturday, July 20, 2013

If I Know What Love Is...

This is my first week off from DT duties with Color My Heart for a long time, so of course I made a card.  These colors totally had me stumped and then I came across this challenge with instructional video and thought, "Hmmm, I have some stamps I think I could do that with.  Oh...and I might even be able to incorporate Ruby, Twilight, and Olive."

The stamp sets used are retired CTMH:  Sweet Flowers, The Giving Hand, and Unscripted.   I didn't have watercolor paint so I used the squeeze-the-lid-into-the-ink-pad method to create my watercolors.  I wasn't good about letting the image dry before going over it with the detail/outline image, but this is such an abstract kind of thing I decided not to re-stamp everything.  The flicks of color over the entire panel really were intentional...especially after the unintentional ones gave me the idea.  Ha!

I added some Cashmere ink (hey...it's a neutral) into the center of the flower.  I thought a full, Ruby flower would be too overwhelming.

Somewhere in blog land I came across a video where the gal said you should use every color three times.  Looking over my cards, I've realized I don't follow that rule but I do try to have at least each color represented twice, hence the Cashmere center is repeated in the Kraft card base, the Ruby flower is repeated in the heavy Baker's Twine, and the Olive stem/leaf is repeated in the side panel.  The Twilight is repeated three times.  It might not look like it, but the back panel is watercolor stamped in Twilight, so add that to the sentiment and sponged edge and that gets it to three.  I suppose the flicks of ink could be my third for the Ruby and Olive, but that's stretching it.

I really like this technique.  You might just see this again in the future.

Until next time,

Friday, July 19, 2013

Layered Vellum Sympathy

There were several fabulous techniques at Summer Card Camp 2 today but my favorite was the layered vellum.  I pulled out all my old Wildflower stamps and went to town. 

LOVE how it turned out although the picture isn't quite doing that purple justice.  Colors used are Smokey Plum, Bamboo, Cocoa, and Honey (CTMH).  The sentiment is from Peddler's Pack and is one I pull out often.  The ribbon was something I picked out of a clearance bin at Michael's a few years ago. 

The hardest part was keeping my layers together to sew and keep them from shifting.

Luckily I don't have any need for a sympathy card at the moment, but I find it useful to have some on hand in case they are too hard to make in the moment.

Until next time,

Thursday, July 18, 2013

Christmas Butterfly

This week's color combination over at Summer Card Camp 2 is not my favorite, and I have not been inspired to do much with it.  However, today's assignment was to take a holiday stamp set and use it for some other occasion.  As suggested, I pulled out all my Christmas stamps (though we could have used other holiday sets, too) and just looked at them.  And looked at them.  And turned them around to look at them upside down.  Inspiration struck when I saw butterfly wings.

Pretty darn pleased with myself to see butterfly wings in Christmas bulbs!   After looking at the descriptions on the photo above, I should clarify.  The top/all blue butterfly wings were done with the outline bulb and the bottom/blue and green wings were done with the bulb inside the dark-edge circle.  Oh...and the marker is Marvy LePlume not Tombow.  Hope that's clear now.

The stamp set is retired CTMH called O Christmas Tree.  The sentiment was done by a small stamp store in Port Orchard, WA which made custom stamps.  They have been out of business for a long time, unfortunately. 

The butterfly and sentiment were stamped in Momento Rich Cocoa.  The others were CTMH pigment inks in Pear, Topiary, and Crystal Blue.  The paper is also Crystal Blue.

I popped the punched circles and butterfly up on foam tape to give the card a bit of dimension.  I'm still debating adding some glitter on the wings but I don't want to obscure the watercoloring (done with Derwent watercolor pencils May Green #48, Sap Green #49, and Turquoise Blue #39).

If I had more time today, I think I'd do another card simply because this one is making me smile so much!!

Until next time,

Monday, July 15, 2013

Ho, Ho, Ho

There are a couple sketches out there which look pretty similar to me, so I think this card will work for all of them.


The "Ho, Ho, Ho" and banner are both cut from CTMH's Artiste cartridge.  The black glitter paper and sentiment are also CTMH, though the stamp set is retired.  The red paper has a great texture to it which isn't showing well in the big picture but is better in this detail shot of the banner.  I scored the banner twice on each end and filled the middle with foam tape to lift it.  I thought about doing the red panel with foam tape, but there were too many small bits to the inside of the Ho, Ho, Ho for it to work well.  Either that or I was too lazy to fuss that much.

Here are the sketch challenges I'm entering:

CAS(E) This Sketch #36
Atlantic Hearts #12
Fusion #13

I'm also entering it into the Merry Monday: Christmas in July Challenge.

Now it's off to see what's going on over at Summer Card Camp 2.

Until next time,

Sunday, July 14, 2013

On my Kindle

Knowing lots of authors is a double-edged sword.  If you read their book and don't like it, it's tough to look them in the eye and say, "Mweh."  I have stopped reading advance copies in exchange for reviews because of it.

However, I just finished Five Days in Skye by Carla Laureano and loved it.  LOVED it!  So I'm telling you all about it.  And it's currently $2.51 on Kindle.

Carla was a finalist in the American Christian Fiction Writer's Genesis Contest for unpublished writers the same year I was.  Thrilled beyond words for her to have her debut novel out and to be able to recommend it with enthusiasm.  And, unless I miss my guess, there are a few family members of the hero who need a little romance in their life. 


Until next time,

Saturday, July 13, 2013

"K" Key Happy Birthday

For some time now I've wanted to play along with the Rose Blossom Garden Challenge.  This week is the "K" key from CTMH's Artiste Cricut Cartridge.  I've paired it with Chantilly paper to bring you this:

The sentiment comes from Say it in Style and is stamped in Slate ink.  I curved the words just a tad to match the banner shape. 

When cutting my shapes, I only cheated a tiny bit.  I used my Cricut Design Studio to stretch the yellow background to match the outside shape of the squared doily top.  That made my holes in the wrong spot so I used the "hide shape" feature to fill them in and then used a small hole punch to put them where they would line up to thread the ribbon.  I also fussed with adding the outside layer of dark pink petals by using the cut out shapes from the back side of the large blue/green flower and very carefully (picture tweezers here) dotting the ends with Liquid Glass and sliding them underneath.  To me, the flower just looked like it was floating until I "grounded" it with that extra layer of dark color.

The white paper was a scratch piece I had leftover, the button is from somewhere, and the sequins and ribbon came from Hobby Lobby.  Other than that, everything is CTMH.

It was quite by accident that I didn't secure the banner on the left end.  Which was fortunate because I wouldn't have been able to open the card otherwise.  Whew!

Until next time,

Friday, July 12, 2013

Twilight Bird of Happiness

My daughter and son-in-law celebrated their 4th wedding anniversary on July 5.  In the spirit of killing two birds with one stone (Eek!  I probably shouldn't say that with the blue twilight-bird of happiness on their card), I worked ahead on this week's Color My Heart challenge by stamplifting this card:

Everything cut or stamped comes from the CTMH Art Philosophy Cricut cartridge and coordinating stamp collection.  The colors are Bamboo, Desert Sand and Twilight.  The B&T paper is from several years back and is called Simple Pleasures.  I used White Daisy pigment ink for the sentiment but it didn't stand out well enough so I embossed with white powder.  The words were supposed to be a little more off-center to give this very straight, symmetrical card some whimsy.  Not sure it really worked.

In order to have room for the Desert Sand leaves to hang off the edge, I trimmed the card to just under 4.25.  (Well...that and because I didn't measure my top strips well enough and they were just under 4.25, but the first reason sounds like I had an actual plan so we'll go with that.)

The only non-CTMH thing on the card is the sequins.  I am having an absolute blast with these little sequins.  I dotted them all over this card, too.

If you want the real nitty-gritty, here are the page numbers for the various cuts from the Art Philosophy pamphlet:

  • tag-43 (2.5x5)
  • leaf veins-43 (cut from Desert Sand and buried beneath the tag so you might not be able to see it well)
  • bird and wing-51 (1.25)
Next time I do this, I'll glue my flimsy B&T paper to the cardstock before cutting.  With the level of detail on the leaf, the B&T tore a bit.  I patched it up but it was a pain!

Until next time,

Thursday, July 11, 2013

Ten Minute Fail

The challenge today over at Summer Card Camp 2 is a Ten-Minute Craft Dash. 

I failed. 
By two full minutes. 
Plus my cutting didn't work out at all like I thought it would.
But I thought I'd post here anyway so you can commiserate.

I even had my stamps loaded onto their acrylic blocks and my ink pads sitting next to me. 

The letters were cut with a Cricut.  I welded every other letter with the idea that the "a" and second "p" would be fully formed but the rest would have little cut outs as shown on the video.  I even took precious time to view my cut out and see that I'd done it correctly.  As you can see, it didn't work.  The effect, however, is still pretty cool.  I'll have to mess around with it more to see if can get the effect I was going for or if this is the best I can do.  The little bit of flame from the blue candle peeking out is totally bugging me.  I'll have to go back and add some sequins or a pearl or something else to hide it because it just looks like a smudge to me.

All in all, it's not bad.  I don't think it's going to be my favorite card from Summer Camp, but it's not bad.  I will use that cutting technique again.  And since the point of taking a class is to learn new things, the lesson was a complete success!

Until next time,

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Thanks a Latte

I've been on a crafting roll lately.  I think it might be avoidance.  My house is a mess; my novel is languishing in my imagination; and I have about four loads of laundry waiting to be done.  But hey, I'm listening to music I have to perform soon and haven't learned well enough yet.  Plus, I've made a lot of cute cards.  Like this one which combines Mojo Monday #301 with Color Throwdown #250:

The coffee images are from Verve Better With You.  The label and stamps used to make the yellow background paper are all CTMH from various sets; coordinating label cut out from Art Philosophy Cricut cartridge.  The sequins are all white and colored with Copics YR15, R29 and BG75.  The cup was colored with BG10, BG0000 and Colorless.  The java background was stamped with Versamark on Kraft; same for the coffee cup sleeve.  Sentiment, coffee cup, and steam swirl stamped in Momento Rich Cocoa.  All other inks CTMH: Lagoon, Crème Brulee, Hollyhock.

Okay...I've wasted enough time.  Time to get dinner started so my darling hubby doesn't start complaining about me not getting anything done.  He's fine with the mess, but food is another story.

Until next time,

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Summer Card Camp Week One

It's only been two days, but I've already picked up some fun tips from the Summer Card Camp.  I've combined the color swiping and text as background techniques with this week's colors and sketch.

Stamps are all CTMH, only one of which is current: Sentiment from Avonlea Workshop on the Go; background text from State of Mind, background circle from Connections, and figures from Sightseer (current). 

Ink is all CTMH: Honey, Smoothie, Crystal Blue, and Sunset.  Background and under embossing is White Daisy pigment ink.

Blue paper is CTMH Sky.

The stitching is not holding anything down.  It's just there to provide a frame.  My original idea was to stamp with White Stazon over a thick plastic bag.  That didn't work out so well.  I have to figure out how to get a wider stitch length, and I needed to sew much further from the edge.  Anyone need a frayed piece of plastic?

The photography was really tricky on this.  Trying to capture the white background text was pretty difficult.  The swipe colors are much closer to the challenge colors before photoshopping.

Since I combined multiple stamp images, I'm linking this up over at Heart2Heart for my second entry in this week's Mix & Mingle challenge.

Until next time,

Monday, July 8, 2013

Sweet Birthday Wishes

When you are in the Army, sometimes you are far away from family on special occasions.  That's when your Army family comes in handy.  One of my friends is having a birthday today.  A couple weeks ago she called me up to ask if I would do her a huge favor.  Her husband forbade her to make her own birthday treats, so she asked if I would be willing to bake some gluten-free cupcakes.  She would even pay me to do it.


My kids are grown and gone, so I haven't had the pleasure of treating someone to birthday cupcakes for years now.  Plus, I've been desperately needing to justify purchasing the CTMH Artiste cartridge with all its cupcake liners before I spend another boatload on the new CTMH Artbooking cartridge.  In the end I didn't use the cupcake liners, but I did pull out the Artiste cartridge to make these sweet treats:

I bought the frosting roses at Hobby Lobby.  They were expensive, but totally worth it (and I used my 40% off coupon so that helped).  The cupcake liners were on sale in the 4th of July section (HL).  The bottoms of them are blue and white stars, but you're not going to see them so I figured that was okay.  After I finished baking the cupcakes, I added a second liner so the greasy doesn't show through.

I am linking this up to Heart2Heart: Mix & Mingle challenge.  We are supposed to use either paper from three different packs or stamps from three different sets.  The stamped circle is from Connections, the "Sweet Birthday Wishes" is from an old wood-mounted Super Set, and the veins of the leaves are from Something Splendid.  All of them are CTMH and all are retired, but no one said I had to use current stamps for the challenge.

The swirl is cut from Artiste p. 46.  It's actually a button.  The leaf is from p. 54.  Had it not been for the challenge, I wouldn't have thought to add the veins.  LOVE how it turned out.  Shapes were cut from Ruby and Olive with the edges sponged in coordinating ink.

Until next time,

P.S.  And here she is picking up the tray.  She was surprised...and pleased.  Yay!!!

Sunday, July 7, 2013

Summer Card Class 2 Pre-Class Challenge

I learned so much from participating in the Clean & Simple Online Card Class, that I decided to take the Summer Card Class.  There are two pre-class challenges.  One is a color combination and the other is a sketch.  I decided to combine the two since the class starts tomorrow!

The stamps are all CTMH.  I cut down the large doily so it was more proportional for the card.  I white embossed over vellum then used a brush to watercolor Smoothie, Sky, and Slate ink over top.  I used very little water so my color was fairly bold.

The background vellum is sewn on, and the greeting tag is stapled.  I used a small dab of Liquid Glass on the back of the doilies to adhere them.

I really like how soft and feminine this turned out!  Can't wait to see what new and exciting projects we will have during this three week class.

Until next time,

Saturday, July 6, 2013

Christmas Chalkboard

I am crazy in love with this weeks Mojo Monday sketch.  And the list of prizes to celebrate their 300th post ain't so bad neither!  They are also offering a 20% discount, so I ordered from their "Christmas in July" sale and got my stamps in two days!!

Sentiment is Verve from the Peace on Earth set.  The snowflake was cut with CTMH Art Philosophy Cricut cartridge and embossed with Versamark and Bridal Tinsel powder.  This powder is old CTMH and I'm not sure if anyone else carries something similar.  The sparkles are also CTMH.  The banner is CTMH Sunny Yellow cardstock embossed using a Martha Stewart scoreboard.  The black panel was dry embossed using a Sizzix folder then brushed lightly with CTMH White Daisy pigment ink.
I added black and white sequins (oh...am I in love with these little sequins) from Hobby Lobby.  I even got them on the sale rack for 71 cents.  Score!  I used a yellow Prismacolor pencil on the background behind "SAVIOR".  Because the sentiment is more rectangular than square, I added the swirl (also from Peace on Earth) to give it the extra width.
I'm not really sure why I chose black and yellow for a Christmas card, but I really like it.  Here's hoping I win one of those fab prizes!
Until next time,

Friday, July 5, 2013

Live Inspired

If you are looking for the Color My Heart card, please go here.

This morning while cruising around Pinterest, I found a tutorial on masking.  Since the Heart2Heart challenge is masking, I decided to copy the idea from the tutorial and use this week's CAS(E) this Sketch.

As suggested in the tutorial, I pulled out a boatload of stamps and just kept going.  All supplies are CTMH unless otherwise noted:
  • stamps: Live Inspired, You & Me, Air Mail, and Make It Count (all retired, sorry)
  • ink: Slate, Black, Ruby, and Versamark for embossing (with silver detail embossing powder from somewhere not clearly marked on my jar)
I love how this turned out because it's not my normal style.  Usually I'm too intimidated by the graphic, almost grunge look.  The tutorial made it look so easy I thought I'd give it a whirl!

Until next time,


Sometimes you need a happy birthday card, sometimes happy anniversary, and sometimes it's happy whole other occasion.  Why not create a couple happy (fill in the blank on the inside) cards?

This week's Color My Heart dare uses a paper packet I don't have, "Surf's Up."  I used Crystal Blue, Sorbet, and Ponderosa Pine (which are regular-line colors included in the pack) then substituted Honey for Surf's Up Gold.  I cut several strips in various widths and glued them to printer paper before cutting with Artiste.  Even though the printer paper is thin, it's still two layers of paper so I set my cutting machine gage to full pressure and a slow cut setting.  It should also be noted that I recently replaced my blade as I'd been using the one that came with the machine for the past four years.  I'd say I got my money's worth!

The only non-CTMH product on these cards are the sequins on the top card and Baker's Twine on the bottom one (Island Indigo from Stampin' Up!). 

I already have plans for these cards.  I've got a couple teenage family members with birthdays soon.  I think the fun and funky look will suit them perfectly.

Until next time,