Saturday, May 1, 2021

May SOM Blog Hop: Flowers for You


Welcome to the May Stamp of the Month: Flowers for You. You should have come from Gina's blog, but don't worry if you started here. The hop is a circle. Just keep going until you get back to where you started. If you get lost along the way, head to Melinda's blog for a full list of participants. Here's a look at this beautiful stamp set...


Here's my first card...


I white embossed the large circular image twice on paper from the new Mix-In Collection that just released today. Using the new Circle Thin Cuts that also released today, I placed the largest circle over the full image, then added the two smallest circles over the second image and die cut them all. I cut some white cardstock with the largest Stitched Rectangle Thin Cuts and then dry embossed with the Cascading Dots Embossing Folder. I matted it over Blue Belle and Black cardstock before gluing it to the card base. I then sponged Black ink along the edges before adding them to the card. After white embossing the sentiment on black cardstock, I added it using foam tape. Some Black Liquid Pearls finished off the card.

After finishing this one, I thought it would be fun to try the same basic idea only with three different colors of background.


I followed the same process, starting with embossing the image twice on pieces of Glacier, Wisteria, and Blue Belle cardstock. I then cut them with the circle thin cuts, but instead of using the largest (3") circle, I went down to the 2.5" circle for the largest. The smaller two are still the 1" and 1.5" circles. I sponged the edges with the coordinating ink colors and backed them with the light side of the coordinating cardstock sponged with the coordinating inks. I then stamped the sentiment in the dominant color.

As I was considering which color to use as the background matte, I fell back on a color design principle I learned years ago: gallon, quart, pint. So... whatever color the largest circle was, I made that both the matte and the sentiment color for my gallon of one color accented with a quart and pint of the other two colors. Here's the predominantly Blue Belle card up close...


These colors are difficult to capture in photos, but trust me when I tell you that they are lovely in person.

Now you're off to Kim's blog. Again, keep hopping until you get back to where you started so you see all the great inspiration.

Until next time,
Becca

Tuesday, April 20, 2021

National Scrapbooking Day Celebration Blog Hop


Welcome to the National Scrapbooking Day Celebration Blog Hop. Close To My Heart (aka CTMH) pretty much thinks this day was named for them, so they go all out to celebrate. They released five, limited edition project kits, each with exclusive stamps and most with exclusive papers. Click here to view all of them. They come with downloadable guides to complete pre-designed projects. The Blog Hop ladies decided to show other things you can do with the same materials. You should have come from Michelle's blog, but don't worry if you started here. The hop is a circle. Just keep going until you've seen all the wonderful inspiration. If you get lost along the way, head to Melinda's blog for a full list of participants.

I chose the Cheerful Humor project kit. Some of the sayings cracked me up! Here's a look at the full kit:


Aren't those fun???

Here's my card:


I wanted to show off all the various options for filling in the space between "I forgive you for being" and "than me. (Not really)." I used tape to mask off (Not really) and stamped it on the inside. I also used tape--lots of it--to mask off everything but the "and" in the sentiment that reads "Thanks for being OLDER than me (and happy birthday)."

My colors are Lagoon, Candy Apple, Lemonade, Clover, and Nectarine. I used the Fancy Border Thin Cuts to created my side border, which only required a small scrap of paper. I could have embellished with some of the puffy stickers which come in the kit, but I wanted to show that--even after those are used up--you can still created cute cards. In fact, you could reproduce this with any paper pack that has at least one pattern with lots of bright, bold colors. Just use coordinating inks and...voila!

Now you're off to Miss Carrie's blog. I can't wait to see what she and the other CTMH Makers have created to inspire us!

Until next time,
Becca


Monday, April 12, 2021

Stamp-tacular Blog Hop

Welcome to the Stamp-tacular Blog Hop. This is my FAVORITE blog hop of the whole year. I can't wait to see what all the Makers have created. You should have come from Michelle's blog, but don't worry if you started here. The hop is a circle so just keep going until you've seen all the fabulous inspiration from these incredibly talented ladies. If you get lost along the way, head to Melinda's blog for a full list of participants.


Most of the time when I make a card, it needs to be one I can create quickly. But sometimes I need to slow way down and do something that takes extra time. Usually that's for the sake of the recipient; once in a while it's for me because art is my therapy. For this card, it was both.

I've recently realized just how much winter and the pandemic has taken out of me. I'm suffering from mild depression. Art, as I said, is therapy--and the more time I take to create something beautiful, the more I get lost in it and the better it is for my soul. I also have a friend whose teenage daughter committed suicide a few months ago.

You don't send a quick and easy card for something like that.

One of the greatest fears of parents who lose a child is that they'll be forgotten. I plan to keep sending cards to my friend throughout the year--and for years to come--to let her know I remember.



I combined Where Happiness Blooms with Thin Cuts, on sale for $20, and Sweet Fruit with Thin Cuts, on sale for $25, for this card. I also used eight different ink colors and some sponge daubers to create my shading. Here's the list of colors:
  • Linen with Mink shading (watering can)
  • Avocado with Fern shading (all leaves)
  • Peach with Desert Rose shading (tulips and grapefruit slice)
  • Lemonade and Sundance (two-tone lemon)

Everything was cut using the coordinating thin cuts except the leaves around the fruit and the solitary tulip on the bottom left. I hand cut those using Micro-tip Scissors. The only extra coloring I did was to add some colored pencil lines for the tulip stems. The background paper is from the Eat Play Love collection cut with the largest Stitched Rectangle Frame Thin Cuts. After everything was cut and assembled, I accented with White Liquid Pearls

The whole saying is "Where flowers bloom, so does hope." I can't think of a better sentiment to send a grieving mom when spring is in the air.

For more artwork featuring the Sweet Fruit stamp set, click here. For more featuring the Where Happiness Blooms set, click here and here, but be aware that not all the supplies used are still available.

Now you're off to Gina's blog. I'm right behind you because over twenty ladies contributed to this hop, and I can't wait to see what they have created to inspire us!!

Until next time,
Becca

Thursday, April 1, 2021

April Stamp of the Month Blog Hop: Scandinavian Folk Art Greetings

 


Welcome to the April Stamp of the Month: Scandinavian Folk Art. You should have come from Alyson's blog, but don't worry if you started here. The hop is a circle. Just keep going until you get back to where you started. If you get lost along the way, head to Melinda's blog for a full list of participants.


My heritage has some Swedish in it, so I was immediately drawn to the images in this set. However, I needed a jump start for inspiration on what to do with them. I went to Pinterest and searched "Scandinavian Handmade Card" and "Folk Art Card." The images inspired a couple of cards and a scrapbook page.


My colors here are Lagoon. Sundance, and Candy Apple. The background paper is from the current Mix-In collection. I think this pattern is perfect for the Scandinavian theme. I created my colored, scallop bordered mattes by running cardstock through the Stitched Lattice Background Thin Cut. I ran a piece of White Daisy cardstock through the largest Stitched Rectangle Thin Cut, layered all of them together, then glued it at an angle over my cardbase, careful to line it up so the top and left side showed no stitching, before trimming it down. 

For this card, I used the Eat Play Love Digital Image set. The images have some fancy, swirly cuts to them. I used the "Hide Contour" feature in Design Space to get rid of almost all of them so I could White Emboss the images I wanted. The background paper is from the Eat Pray Love paper suite which I also ran through the larges Stitched Rectangle Thin Cuts then backed with a piece of Lagoon cardstock. The idea of decorating with these image inspired me to do a little more white embossing in non-traditional way...


As soon as I went through the March/April Seasonal catalog, I thought the Scandinavian images coordinated well with the Eat Play Love suite of products. Colors here and for the above card are Lagoon, Candy Apple. Lemonade, Fern, and Toffee.

Here are some close ups of the wood shapes which I colored and then white embossed for this page.




I added some acrylic stars and Rose Gold Liquid Pearls, which I felt would hold up on a scrapbook page because they are nestled close to thick wood and acrylic shapes that will keep the dots from getting crushed. To keep the white powder from clinging to the wood shapes I liberally patted the Anti Static Pouch after coloring them with alcohol markers. 

The border on the right side of the page was cut with the Fancy Borders Thin Cuts on the light side of Lemonade.

I'm excited to add pictures to this page. Our family has a tradition of Christmas cookies. This year we added a daughter-in-law who'd never done cookies. We had such fun! Sure...this isn't technically Christmas paper, but it's my scrapbook and I can do what I want. 

Now you're off to Lauren's blog. Again, keep going until you get all the way through the blog hop to see lots of great inspiration using this fun set.

Until next time,

Becca

Thursday, March 18, 2021

March-April New Products Blog Hop


Welcome to the March/April 2021 New Products Blog Hop. You should have come from Michelle's blog, but don't worry if you started here. The hop is a circle, so just keep going until you get back where you started. If you get lost along the way, pop over to Melinda's blog where she has a full list of participants and links.

I fell in love with the Sweet Fruit stamp set as soon as I saw it. I kinda went a little crazy, so...yeah. Bear with me as I take you through my various creations.

The first two cards were created with just the images from Sweet Fruit. My first card pairs it with paper from the new Mix-Ins pack.

The lemon was stamped in Lemonade and Sundance. The cherries and the left apple were stamped with Peach as the solid base and overstamped with Candy Apple. The apple in the right was stamped with Lemonade as the base then overstamped with Candy Apple. The leaves are Fern with Toffee, and the cherry and apple stems are Toffee. I used the coordinating thin cuts to cut out the images, although I also used an exacto knife to cut a triangle between the cherry stems. And I think I stamped the apple stem the wrong way, but it worked well enough. 

I white embossed the sentiment on Candy Apple paper that was cut using one of the dies from the Waterfall Thin Cut. 

The white stitched border between the patterned paper and the card base was cut with the Stitched Rectangle Thin Cut. It's leftover from this next card.

Again, the stamped images are only from the Sweet Fruit set, but this time I paired it with the Floral Background Thin Cut. The base color is Sage, which is also the color of the sentiment. I used the Rectangular Stitched Frames, which cuts both a panel (which I used here) and a frame (which I used on the first card). The leaves on this card are Sage outline with a second generation stamping of Sage for the solid base.

For my third and fourth cards, I added fun sentiments from the You're My Jam stamp set.


Here I went very clean and simple. I cut a stitched rectangle background panel, backed it with a piece of Candy Apple cardstock a smidge larger, then glued both to my card base. I added the cherry and lemon images (same colors as the first card) and then stamped the sentiment in black...except I stamped it katywumpus, so I stamped it again on a piece of white cardstock and die cut it with the smallest square stitched thin cut. I love it when I can fix and oops by just covering it up!

Here's my fourth card:


I really love this card. It's my second favorite of this post. I die cut the lemon from Sundance Mix In paper and the leaves from Sage cardstock. The leaves are part of the die cut for the cherries, so I partially cut the image and trimmed off the excess so I only had a leaf left. I then repeated the process to get the second leaf. I sponged the edges in their coordinating ink colors then glued them to the stitched rectangle panel. I added a piece of black paper behind the stitched panel. I don't remember the exact measurements (and I'm away from home so I can't just grab a ruler and reach 2000 miles to figure it out), but my best guess is that it's 5.25x2.75. I finished by adding the sentiment in black in and a small gold bow, which means I can enter it in the current Heart2Heart Challenge: A Midas Touch.

Here's my favorite card of the bunch...


For this card I added the Cherry Blossom stamp set as well as some Distress Oxide Ink to create my background.

I started by sponging Chipped Sapphire over white cardstock. I left a few patches with a little less ink, then added Mowed Lawn and Seedless Preserves to those spots. I thin spritzed water to activate the distress ink. I also flicked some Clear Shimmer Brush over it before drying it and running it through the rectangular stitched thin cuts. 

I white embossed the sentiment, which comes from the Cherry Blossom set, but only after pouncing the Embossing Buddy over my distressed background to remove all static and be sure my surface was dry for the embossing powder. I didn't want flecks of white anywhere after creating such a cool background.

I stamped my flowers in Toffee and then sponged a bit of Flamingo ink in the centers with Sponge Daubers. The leaves are Sage and Toffee, while the lemon is Lemonade and Sundance inks. I fussy cut the images because the edge left by the thin cuts would take away from the contrast between that dark blue background and the yellow lemons. 

In case you were wondering, the small duo of Cherry Blossom flowers in the bottom left corner is the same image as the flowers with the branch at the top of the lemon. I just cut off everything but the two flowers.

Now you're off to Alyson's blog. I can't wait to see what she and the other talented CTMH Makers have created to inspire us!

Until next time,

Becca

Monday, March 1, 2021

March SOM Blog Hop: Winged Masterpiece

Welcome to the March Stamp of the Month Blog Hop featuring Winged Masterpiece. You should have come from Haley's blog, but don't worry if you started here. The hop is a circle. Keep going until you get back where you started so you see all the fabulous inspiration. If you get lost along the way. head to Melinda's blog for a full list of participants.

Here's a look at this beautiful set.



I made two cards for this hop, one is fairly straightforward for the included images and one is...let's just say it's a little outside of the box. 

Here's card one:




I started by cutting apart the sentiment that says "forever wouldn't have been long enough." I am a huge fan of cutting apart stamps, particularly sentiments. It really stretches their usefulness. I then cut my panel using one of the Fancy Border thin cuts. 

I stamped my dragonfly and "forever" in Toffee ink. I also stamped the Toffee background paper with the small flower from the stamp set. The paper is from the March-April Mix-In collection. 

My final touch was to use Moon Dust Glitter gel through a stencil I created with the CTMH USA Cricut Collection. I angled the stencil over my dragonfly and the added the gel, making sure I didn't go to the edges. That gave it a more organic feel.

For my second card, I used the CTMH Flower Market Cricut Cartridge. I also stole a couple ideas from other CTMH Makers, namely Trina Wirihana and Jean Johnson. This one features the Garden Gnomes stamp set, which is in the Core Catalog.



Cute, right? I just love these gnomes!! 

The sentiment is from Winged Masterpieces. That's it. The paper is from the same Mix-In collection as the first card, this time in Canary and Fern colors. I did some paper piecing on the gnome's hat an clothes, using plain Fern cardstock stamped with the new Charming Backgrounds stamp set. I surgically removed a few of the lines in the Multi Square Window thin cut (also part of the Core Catalog). It changes up the look in a really fun way.

When the card was done, I went back in with some of the Moon Dust gel. I added it to the sentiment, behind the gnome, and a couple other places. I thought it gave my card a bit of leprechaun magic.

Now you're off to Kim's blog. I can't wait to see what she and the other talented Makers have created for us!

Until next time,
Becca

Sunday, February 14, 2021

Bold Declaration of Love

 It's been a while since I participated in some of my favorite challenges, so I decided to check them out before making my husband's Valentine's Day card. Let's hear it for the Color My Heart: Shades of Pink + One and Heart2Heart: All You Need is Love challenges.


I completely copied this idea from someone else. Unfortunately, there was no information on the inspiration picture for me to find a link for you. To create it, I started by cutting 1/4 inch strips of cardstock in Candy Apple, Flamingo, Ballerina, and Mint. Then I die cut the sentiment and heart shape. The "you" was stamped in Candy Apple (which I'm counting as a shade of pink for the Color My Heart challenge). The final touch was adding two white enamel dots. For the sake of design, I did line up the top and bottom Candy Apple strips, but otherwise, I kept it random. 

I hope the hubby likes his card!

Until next time,

Becca

Friday, February 5, 2021

Bring Back My Pack - Blossom Blog Hop

 


Welcome to the Bring Back My Pack Blog Hop. You should have come from Gina's blog. The hop is a circle, so just keep going. If you get lost along the way, head to Melinda's blog for a full list of participants.



I used Shower Flowers with the Hexagon thin cuts. I also pulled out the banner from the Waterfall thin cuts set for the sentiment. The blue rectangular frame is from the Stitched Rectangular thin cuts. I love my thin cuts!

Now you're off to Kathy's blog. I can't wait to see what she and all the other talented CTMH Makers have created.

Until next time,

Becca

Monday, February 1, 2021

February Stamp of the Month Blog Hop - Doodled Borders

 


Welcome to the February Stamp of the Month Blog Hop featuring Doodled Borders. You should have come from Gina's blog. The hop is a circle, though, so it doesn't matter where you started. Just keep going until you've seen all the posts. If you get lost along the way, head to Melinda's blog where she has a list of all the participants.

Here's a look at this set. 


Oh my goodness, I cannot tell you how much I love these kinds of sets. They allow me to dress up die cuts, create backgrounds, add fun elements, or - as the name suggests - make borders. If you've been to my blog much, you know that I'm a huge fan of tags on cards. These borders fit the Tags and Tabs Thin Cuts perfectly! Yes, the stamp images are designed so you can make looooong borders if you want, but sometimes I need a "one and done" thing. 

 
I used four images from the Doodled Border set on this card, three of them to create the bottom border along the tag, but I also "kissed" my pink flower with the circle of dots to get a little bit of pattern on my petals. The floral images and sentiment come from Stitched Flowers, which was the first stamp set that went in my cart with the Core Catalog was released back in August. 

My colors here and for the next card are Blue Belle, Flamingo, Nectarine, and Green Apple. I don't know about you, but I'm ready for Spring! I added small dots of Liquid Pearls to the centers of the flowers in Ballerina and White Opal.

For my second card, I used the exact same layout. I have several "go to" card designs because I often need a card in a hurry. It saves me SO MUCH TIME if I already have a basic layout.


The background panel is Ballerina (dark side) stamped with Flamingo. For my tag, I deliberately chose the bold, graphic arrow to contrast with the soft hydrangea image (it comes from the Rewards Your Way program which you can only get through your CTMH Maker). I added a touch of color using pencils before cutting it out and foam mounting over the tag. The sentiment comes from the Seasonal Borders stamp set, which was the second thing that went into my cart when the Core Catalog released. I also used Liquid Pearls on the flower centers, this time in Sage. I thought about using Bisque but didn't want to add a new color to my palette, especially when I didn't have yellow anywhere else.

One of the great things about this card design is that I can substitute the icon (floral images) for anything I want. Think animals, gnomes, cupcakes, or hearts. The possibilities are limitless. Plus you can leave off the sentiment for a completely generic card. I try to keep at least five cards without sentiment in my stash so I can quickly stamp one to fit the occasion. Saves me a great deal of stress.

Now you're off to Maureen's blog. Again, the hop is a circle so keep going. You don't want to miss a single project from these incredibly talented Makers.

Until next time,
Becca

Friday, January 22, 2021

Perfect Match Blog Hop

 


Welcome to the Perfect Match Blog Hop. You should have come from Lauren's blog, but don't worry if you started here. The hop is a circle, so just keep going until you've seen all the amazing inspiration from our talented CTMH Makers. If you get lost while hopping, head to Melinda's blog for a complete list of participants.

I've been creating almost non-stop with these products: the paper, the stickers, the stamps...all of it! For my post here, I decided to shamelessly copy a layout idea I found on Pinterest. I was going to give you the link to the original post but it didn't work. I got that nasty "oops" screen. I hope my version is as inspiring for you as the original one was for me.


I wish my stitching was better, but I was relatively successful at covering the worst of my blunders with stickers.

I started by sketching a swirl with pencil on my paper. I then stamped the LOVE, we're a Perfect Match and red arrows, the envelope, a couple of other bordering lines, and the large heart behind the HAPPY sticker. I then did my stitching, breaking in places over the things I'd stamped. When I was done and had pulled my loose threads through to the back side, I erased my pencil line and started adding stickers and a few more stamped things, notably the small pink hearts. On the floral stickers, I trimmed off the blue leaves and then used a black marker to cover up any of the blue still showing before sticking them down. 

The only thing I used that doesn't come from the Perfect Match collection is the "love joy happiness xo" stamp. It's from the upcoming Stamp of the Month called "Doodled Borders." It will be available on February 1. 

This is my favorite picture ever of my husband and me...including wedding pictures! It was taken about ten years ago in Colorado Springs at Garden of the Gods. In a few years, I won't mind my wonky stitching, and this might end up being my favorite layout with my favorite picture.

Now you're off to Michelle's blog. I'm following right behind you because I still have some paper and a few stickers left to go with my stamp set. I can't wait to see what everyone has made!

Until next time,
Becca

Monday, January 18, 2021

January/February 2021 New Product Blog Hop


Welcome to the Jan.-Feb. 2021 Seasonal Catalog Blog Hop! We're so glad you're here. Every two months, CTMH releases a mini catalog filled with beautiful products and we do a hop to show them off. You should have come from Lauren's blog. The hop is a circle, so don't worry about where you started. Just keep going until you've seen all the inspiring projects. If you get lost along the way, head to Melinda's blog for a full list of participants.

There weren't a huge number of things I needed from this mini-catalog. The last four have generated page-long lists of must haves, so it was nice to whittle down to just a couple things I wanted and then make use of things I'd already purchased out of the Core Catalog. 

For this first card, I used the new Letter Tiles Stamp and Thin Cuts set. I've wanted to play with Scrabble tile art for a long time, so this was perfect. I used the current Mix-In paper (bottom, Canary with white polka dots pattern) with Lovely paper from the Core Catalog. I die cut each piece of paper individually with the Stitched Rectangular Frame Thin Cuts, stacked them together, then cut both at the same time. I pieced these two together and covered the seam with a piece of Ballerina cardstock that I just cut the long edge of the very outside part of the largest rectangular stitched thin cut. I also cut tile pieces from Ballerina and offset them slightly with the tile pieces (Toffee cardstock stamped with Espresso ink) before foam mounting them to the card. I accented with a sticker from the Lovely paper collection, then jazzed it up using White Opal and Rose Gold Liquid Pearls.

As a fun side note, my husband came into my craft room and glanced over at my light box where this card was sitting. He started to laugh and said, "I misread that at first. I saw 'HARPY.'" Not too many women in my life I could send a Harpy card to, but now he's got me thinking...

My next card uses the same Mix-In paper plus Ballerina cardstock.

This new mini catalog features a set called Sweet Safari. It's a darling baby-themed set, but I'd already purchased Nursery Days from the Core Catalog, which has similar icons. I decided to make my own version of a card in the Sweet Safari card workshop...with one adjustment made because I messed up. 


Here's the original card. It features three pieces of paper - the stripe, the blue, and the red polka dot - then has some stamped flags and a sentiment. To mimic the flags, I decided to use a goodly amount of Ballerina Liquid Pearls. Except, once I squeezed it out, I decided I didn't like it. 

So I cut it off!

Look closely, and you'll see that the Ballerina border on the right side (cut with one of the Fancy Border Thin Cuts) isn't flush with the white card base. Now, I do really like how this looks, but I don't recommend the process by which I went about it.

I had already foam mounted the banner and giraffe, so I had to carefully cut  along the line of Toffee patterned paper, cut around the banner and giraffe, and then continue cutting straight to the top of the card. I then glued my piece of Ballerina border behind where I cut. It looks fine from the front but is a little ragged on the back side.  The final touches were some much smaller dots of Ballerina Liquid Pearls

Your next stop is Michelle's blog. I'm excited to see what she and the other Makers have created. Who knows, I might just find a "must have" I didn't know I needed.

Until next time,

Becca

Friday, January 1, 2021

January SOTM Blog Hop: Every Thank You



Welcome to the new year...which means a new stamp of the month and a new seasonal catalog! Our blog hop features the Every Thank You stamp set. You should have come from Lauren's blog. There are eighteen of us this month, so if you get lost along the way, hop over the Melinda's blog for a full list of the participants. 

Here's a look at the fabulous stamp set...so many ways to combine the various fonts.


Here's my first card. I used three different colors of cardstock: Blue Belle, Peach, and Desert Rose. I combined it with White Embossing Powder, the Stitched Rectangle and Stitched Square Thin Cuts. 

For this second card, I used the left over pieces from the thin cuts on the first one.


I dressed this one up with splatters from my Black Shimmer Brush and some Blue Belle Sequins. I love how the Stitched Square and Stitched Rectangle Thin Cuts give you both panels and frames. 

Now you're off to Darly's blog. I can't wait to see what she and all the other CTMH Makers have for us.

Until next time,

Becca