Wednesday, March 30, 2016

You're Beautiful

I combined three challenges for today's card: Color Throwdown, Freshly Made Sketches, and Heart2Heart (although I used a butterfly instead of "Birds or Bees" because it's all I had this far away from home).

Everything is CTMH. Here's the supply list:
  • Stamps: You're Own Kind of Wonderful, Your Beautiful Self, Packages, Boxes & Tags
  • Ink: Peacock and Fern (pigment)
  • Paper: Enchantment Fundamentals
  • Accessories: Clear Embossing Powder, MISTI stamping tool, paintbrush, foam tape
I stamped the line of hearts after the card was assembled using my MISTI. I had to press harder on the edge that was more angled because of the foam tape. That's why the hearts do that weird shadow-edged thing.  Most of the time, I'd tear the whole thing off and start over, but I kinda like it.

For the coloring, I painted with pigment ink because, again, it's all I have right now.  I dabbed a line of Fern on the edge of small bowl, wet my brush with plain water, and painted the butterfly. It gave me a mottled look instead of smooth one.

This is for a dear friend who just needed to be reminded of this simple truth today.  I know I need to hear it once in a while. How about you?

Until next time,

Monday, March 28, 2016

Color Blocked Congratulations

I love the bright, bold colors chosen for this week's Color My Heart Challenge: Gypsy, Lagoon, and White Daisy.  And I love the idea of combing bold with "Delicate" which is this week's Addicted to CAS challenge.  I put the CTMH Artistry cartridge back to work for this card:

I forgot to measure, and I don't have the card to do it after the fact, but I think the squares are 1.25" square, so the color blocking is 2.5x2.5" mounted on 2.75x2.75" White Daisy base.  The trees were cut with my Cricut, glued down, then painted over with shimmer paint although you can't see it in the picture. The sentiment is from CTMH "Shower Flowers" stamped in Gypsy then trimmed down after the fact to get the thinnest possible strip.  It would have been fun to let the edges of this hang over a bit and snip a "V" in each end, too.

After the center block was done, I mounted it on a single layer of foam tape and attached it to the card base.  I'm a big fan of the white on white mounting because it adds interest without adding bulk.  I can easily see this with a second, thicker white mat similar to how I did this card.

A writer friend was recently nominated for a RITA award.  She gave me credit in her "Acknowledgements" for helping her brainstorm the book.  I was touched because I felt like I did so little.  This card is for her.

Until next time,

Thursday, March 24, 2016

Mixed Media

Army wives are always having a "coffee."  That doesn't mean there's actual coffee involved, but it's what get-togethers have been called since...well...I don't know how long.  Anyway, one of the things I've done with coffee groups is go to the painting studio.  The problem is, I paid around $40 for something I won't hang on my wall.

So, when the Blog Hops With Heart gals decided to do a mixed media project, I decided it was time to cover what I won't use and see if I could come up with something I would.  Before I got started, I did some blog hopping and ran across this. I used it as inspiration to come up with these:

Here are a few "how to" pictures. (NOTE: I only got two of the three pictures done, but I'm planning a third soon.)

I started by doing a light wash of white paint then gluing some background and texture papers onto the paintings. Next came the chipboard cut-outs. 

After the main chipboard was down, I added a banner and some other kraft-colored shapes.  I dabbed white paint on the kraft-colored images and around the edges of my background and texture paper. Next, I splotched a bunch of paint colors so the overall picture had more color, then added more white paint to tone down anything too bright. I stamped a few background images, but I didn't mount the stamps on blocks.  I was intentionally random both in the inking and stamping. Then, it was time to add accessories. I used rub-ons, stickers, and metallic and resin pieces that, if you put them on a card, need special envelopes and extra postage so they tend to build up in my stash of stuff.  I went hog wild!!

I used up so many supplies, I actually threw out some of the packaging. The best part was dressing up the various wood pieces and picture frame using my theme for the overall piece. I used rub-ons to add letters on the butterfly on my "writing" picture, but the dragonfly on the "home and family" picture has X's and O's to amplify my love theme. My "writing" picture was a great place to display my pin for being a finalist in a writing contest. It's been sitting on a shelf and now I can showcase it or wear it when I go to conference.

I'm now officially hooked on this whole Mixed Media thing. My favorite part of these particular pictures is that most of the chipboard pieces I used were what's leftover after you used the main pieces.

No...I take that back.  My favorite part is that, for about the same amount I paid for one picture, I will have three pictures to proudly display. 

You should have come from Kelly's blog and are now headed to Amie's blog.  We're the only three on this hop, but what we lack in length we make up for in inspiration!

Until next time,

Friday, March 18, 2016

Birthday Hats

Have I mentioned how much fun I'm having with the CTMH Artistry cartridge?  Maybe once or twice...or a little bit more?!  Well, I am. And I used it again, along with the colors for this weeks Color My Heart Challenge, on these hats to create a fun birthday card.

I cut both the top and bottom layers of the hats in white, drew a faint line with a pencil so I could sponge color on the bottom layer and have it show through the holes of the top layer in the right place.  To give a tiny bit of added interest, I flipped the top layer of the center hat so the holes were in a slightly different place.

The background paper is from "Penelope" with additional sponging in Glacier around the edges to give more definition.

Super simple, but that's what I love so much about this cartridge. Which I might have mentioned before. Once or twice.

Until next time,

Thursday, March 17, 2016

Original Ending to "Cowboy Competion"

I don't normally post links to my author page on this blog, but I did something fun over there and thought some of you might be interested.  The published version of my latest novella, "Cowboy Competition," has a different ending than the one I originally wrote.  I've posted the original ending on my author blog.  (NOTE: You'll probably want to wait to read it until after you've read the published version.)

I'd love to hear what you think!

Until next time,

Monday, March 14, 2016

Simple Hello

Okay...let's just say it up front.  The latest Cricut cartridge from Close to my Heart is THE BOMB! 

I stamped "Shower Flowers" in Canary, Smoothie, Flaxen and Sweet Leaf, this week's challenge from Color My Heart.  I topped it with the "hello" sentiment from Artistry in Smoothie and White Daisy.  After the sentiment was down, I added a bow. 

So simple, but it ranks in the top five of all the cards I've made this year.

Until next time,

Thursday, March 10, 2016

Crafting on the Road

I'm staying with my son for about three weeks.  His job is a pretty overwhelming at the moment, so he asked if I would come to make sure he ate something when he got home after a LONG day.

How can a mother say no?

Anyway, this isn't my first time spending several weeks with him.  Last October, while my husband was in Korea and Japan, I came for the fun of it.  I had a great time, but I really missed being able to craft.  So, this time I brought a minimal stash of stuff expecting my son would have things like scissors and glue. 

Nope. Had to borrow them from a neighbor.  But, still, I managed well enough to be able to play along with this week's Freshly Made Sketch challenge.

I brought a stack of pigment inks from CTMH.  They're small, so I could fit a lot of colors in my bag.  I used every color in my stack on this card.  For those of you who are CTMH fans, this is the Enchantment color family.  I used two CTMH stamp sets: Shower Flowers and Happy to be Friends.

I don't like the torn and crumpled border on this card. It just doesn't fit with the crisp edges of the flowers.  However, limited supplies and a border that isn't budging means this is how the card gets mailed. WAIT...I think I fixed it.

In writing news, I finished two major projects this week: a synopsis and the first draft of a novella that comes out in November of this year in The Blue Ribbon Brides Collection.  Yay!  (Had to say that in case hubby reads the blog and thinks I'm not working. He's pouting a little because he's not getting home cooking while son is. Son has very little sympathy. It's good to be me!)

Time to get back to writing, cleaning, and cooking.  You know...the same stuff I do at home.

Until next time,

Sunday, March 6, 2016

Hippity, Hop, Hop

I am having so much fun with the new CTMH Artistry Cartridge!  I made this cute Easter card by welding a few shapes together and adding a bunny over top.

I used the Penelope paper pack, which allows me to enter this week's Color My Heart challenge, then did a little tone-on-tone stamping for the background of the sentiment panel using the small dots in the stamp set "Packages, Tags, & Boxes."  I'm finding lots of uses for that stamp set and the dots in particular!

Both layers of the bunny were cut in white.  I then sponged color on his tummy, face, and ears in varying degrees of intensity.

Fun and easy!

Until next time,

Thursday, March 3, 2016

Hey. Thanks!

Really quick post today as I have a thousand things to do before my flight this evening.  I'm playing along with the Heart2Heart "Three" challenge.  I chose three different paper packs from CTMH (all retired) and cut them into three banners.

Nothing earth-shattering about this idea, but sometimes simple is just what you need to "get-her-done."

Until next time,