Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Bitter Sweet

My post today is a bit bitter sweet.  Sweet because I think my mojo might have come back, I saw the Mojo Monday sketch challenge this week and immediately had a plan of what I wanted to do.  The bitter part comes because of the reason for making this card, I found out today that one of my colleagues lost her grandmother last weekend.

Butterflies are so lovely to use on a card, to me they symbolise freedom and beauty, but also change and growth, and so I wanted to use them as the feature for the card.  I hunted through my retired DSP and found a sheet of Newsprint with a butterfly print and it was just perfect.  I love using vellum when I do butterflies, and because I wanted a fairly simple design without lots of busy colour or stamping it seemed the right thing to make the butterfly layer from.  What you can't see in the photo very easily is that I stamped and punched a fourth butterfly and have adhered it over the centre one, so that one lifts off the page.  The sentiment from Sweet Essentials was just right also, a obvious sympathy sentiment didn't seem right somehow.

Happy Stamping

Monday, December 30, 2013

Proud Parents

If you visit regularly you will know I don't often post personal photos on my blog, keeping it more for my creative endeavours.  Sometimes there is an occasion or family celebration that I just have to share.  This time it is the graduation of our beautiful daughter from school.

Doesn't she look so elegant in her formal frock, hair all done, matching bag and shoes?  I think the scariest part is how grown up she looks.  We are both so proud of our 'little' girl, school hasn't be the easiest journey for her and there were times I wondered if she would stick with it. I think the turning point came when she discovered the field of Hospitality which gave her a spark and passion strong enough to not only 'make it through' but to succeed.  She is planning on going further in this field and is working to secure a Baker's apprenticeship in 2014, and we wish her all the best.

 To celebrate this proud occasion I wanted to make a card that reflected some of the struggles she had overcome, particularly in high school years. The Feel Goods sentiment was just right for this.  I took inspiration for this card from a card made by Sharon Burkert that I found on Pinterest, though I can't find the directly link now.  I added the year in silver glimmer paper which I highlighted by carefully drawing around each number with a Stampin' Write Marker.  Finished off with stamped and punched images from Flower Shop and Papilion Potpourri.  I also made a belly band for her gift with the flowers and in these colours (you might be able to make out the watch and bracelet set on her wrist).

Happy Stamping

Sunday, December 29, 2013

One thing leads to another.

Again with a little bit of free time on my hands I went in search of a challenge to inspire me.  Mojo Monday have an interesting one this week so I decided to join in.

I had thought about using the flower from Everything Eleanor for the feature shape but it just wasn't quite right so I decided to use the journaling badge and added the sentiment from Chalk Talk. I wanted to use Midnight Muse and went in search of a complementary colour, was directed toward Summer Starfruit and this is the result.

I wasn't really taken with the end result, so decided to try again with a different colour combo, this time matching Midnight Muse with Soft Suede.  I had initially thought Crumb Cake but it was a little washed out. I also chose to cut out the journalling badge with the scallop circle punch rather than fussy cutting it, and added a bow to the top ribbon. I am much happier with this one.

It always amazes me how changing up the colour scheme can make such a difference to the way a card looks!

Happy Stamping

Friday, December 27, 2013

Time Flies

There is nothing quite like popping by to write a blog post to show how quickly time has been flying by this year.  I can't believe its been 6 weeks since my last post! Looking back I have had my daughter's graduation from school, a sick cat, and all the Christmas planning (though even that took a bit of a back seat this year).

Anyway, onto this post.  Boxing day provided me with some time to just relax and create and this sketch challenge from Freshly Made Sketches took my eye.

I haven't used the Beautifully Baroque stamp for ages, and it was the perfect pairing for Elegant Elegance DSP.  I love the fun colours of Eastern Elegance the sentiment seemed to just right for this card. Now just to choose who to send it too.

Happy Stamping

Saturday, November 16, 2013

Non-Traditional Christmas

Don't you just love having new toys and the time to play with them?  I had both this week when my good friend Cathy came over for a play date.  I was a bit tired so didn't get as much done as I would have liked but I did create a card for the 'Tis the Season Challenge.

I figured with a non-traditional colour combination I would also try a non-traditional look to the Christmas card.  The new stamp I used on this card is the lovely Off the Grid background stamp that I got in my last order and haven't had the chance to use.  It really lends itself to a grungy look and I think perfect for what I was going for. I used my Stamp-A-Ma-Jig to line it up and stamp twice on the background, "stamping off" with Baked Brown Sugar to keep the colour soft.

Here is how I made the layer under the sentiment:

Step 1: Distress Baked Brown Sugar card stock with the bone folder until the layers start to split apart.

Step 2: Pull the layers apart gently, the inside has a suede appearance and is great for  a number of different projects.

Step 3: Place one piece of the separated card stock smooth side up on a non-porous surface - I used my silicone mat.  Using an Aqua Painter, 'paint' water around the inside edge of the framelit.  I chose the framelit one size up from the one I used on the sentiment. 
Step 4: Wait a few minutes to let the water seep in, then gently tear around the water line.  In this one I perhaps started tearing a little too soon, you can see the water hasn't soaked all the way through. 

Adding the water allows the fibres of the card stock to come away from each other which gives a soft shape, rather than the more hard edge of the more traditional use of framelits.

Happy Stamping

Sunday, November 10, 2013

Envelope Punch Board - Christmas Bon Bon

Don't you just love it when you find a new way to use a tool? I know I do, and was so excited when I found a video tutorial to make a Christmas Bon Bon using the Envelope Punch Board. I can't find the original link at the moment, but it used a 6-1/2" x 8" piece of DSP, however I wanted to adjust the size so that I could get two from a single sheet of 12"x12" DSP.  I have taken some pictures to show how I made the Bon Bon, isn't it cute?

  • Take a 6" x 8" piece of DSP and score at 1-3/8", 2-3/4". 4-1/8" and 5-1/2"
  • Using a bone folder crease all of the score lines

  •  Using the Envelope Punch Board, place the 8" side of the DSP against the top and put the end of the DSP at the 2-1/8" mark, punch the first notch.

  • The result will look like this

  • Fold the DSP on the first score line, place the fold against the top of the board, and punch at the 2-1/8" mark.
  • Repeat this for all the folds

  •  You should have a piece of DSP that looks like this

  • Use the Scallop Trim Border Punch on each of the short ends
  • Trim off the edge on the small side only, this will be folded in and makes the finished item look neater

  • Using the Score Board Score line up the centre of the punch outs with a groove (I have drawn a line down my 6" groove to make it easier to do things like this)
  • Score the DSP along this line.
  • Score 1/2" either side of this centre line
  • These need to be done gently so as not to rip the DSP

  • Do this for both ends of the Bon Bon.
  • I found it easier to fold along the centre line first.

  • Then fold both sides back to create a fold as shown.

  • You can use TomBow glue or Sticky Strip along the small folded edge - you will want something that is quite strong.

  • I found it easier to line up by lying the Bon Bon flat, so the edge overlaps the glued tab.

  • Open the Bon Bon up and gently push the ends in toward the centre to create the Bon Bon shape.
  • Decorate as desired and fill with treats!

Following making this one, a fellow demo and friend of mine Cathy, tweaked with the sizing again so that you can get a bon bon out of a 6"x6" piece of DSP (that is 4 from a piece of 12x12).  Better still the reduced size is just perfect for two Ferrero Rocher Chocolates!  What a perfect Christmas gift for someone special.  You could also use a Framelit Die to cut a window in one side of the bon bon and cover on the inside with acetate so you can get a peek of the treat inside.

  • Score at 1-3/8", 2-3/4". 4-1/8" and 5-1/2"
  • Line up on the Envelope Punch Board at 1-1/4" mark (instead of 2-1/8")
  • All other steps are the same

Happy Stamping

Time for a Challenge

I have been a bit busy on my week off work, relaxing but full.  I can happily say we now have almost everything sorted for my daughters end of school formal at the end of the month.  Dress, jewelery, hair style, shoes, and bag all under control!  I spent some of the week also making some sample cards for a workshop I demonstrated on the weekend, it was for a group of lovely ladies and we had a really great time. 

But with all that behind me this afternoon I wanted to try out one of my new stamp sets Blooming with Kindness, so I went searching through my favourite challenge blogs and decided to challenge myself with combining the sketch from Sketch Frenzy Friday and the colour combo from Nacho Average Challenge

This is the card I came up with.  I wasn't too sure about the colour combo with this lovely soft card, but I think the style of the stamp breaks up the colour enough to not be overwhelming.  The subtle use of the Marina Mist to frame the image and sentiment help tie it all together.  I used a combination of the stamp from Hearts a Flutter and the Itty Bitty Banner Framelits for the banners.

Thanks for stopping by.

Happy Stamping

Friday, October 18, 2013

Matching Card

Don't you just love a challenge? One of my daughter's friends had her birthday recently and my daughter had bought a beautiful box to put the gift in.  As the resident card maker I was asked to make a card for her too.  On seeing the box I just knew I had to try and make a card to match.

I think it was the colours and the butterfly that made me think of doing a card to match.  I had such fun matching both the colours and the lay out, if you enlarge the photo you can see that I have done some additional stamping on the background to help match the two.

The birthday girl loved the card, box and treats inside so I consider that a job well done.

Happy Stamping

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Special Occasion

Here is another card I made a couple of months ago, this time it was for my niece when she received her first Communion and Confirmation. 

She loves pink and I wanted to keep it simple and pretty so used the Dressed Up Framelits with small flowers around the neckline.  I don't have any particularly religious themed stamps so used a little cross punch I have had for years.  

Happy Stamping

Sunday, October 13, 2013

I'm Back!

It was pointed out to me recently that I haven't posted here since the end of August!  Boy how time flies.  I do have a couple of reasons, life gets really busy this time of year for me ...  
  • On 31st August we celebrated our 22nd Wedding anniversary.
  • 1st September was Father's day on 1st September. 
  • 12th September our beautiful daughter turned 18, and we had a wonderful visit from my mother to help her celebrate.
  • 21st my husband Gavin celebrated his birthday!
  • We finished the month off last weekend with a (relatively) quiet 18th sleepover celebration for 10 of my daughter's friends - I think they got to sleep at about 6am!

I do have a couple of projects to share with you from over this time but firstly I want to share two cards that I made for a friend earlier in the year, someone close to her had passed away and she wanted to send some cards a little while after to members of the family to let them know they were still in her thoughts (isn't that an thoughtful idea!).

I wanted to make cards that had the feel of sympathy without actually being sympathy if you know what I mean.  I am pretty sure I CASEd this from someone but I can't give credit as it was some time ago! I just love the softness of the ribbon and butterflies, I used the Petite Pairs with the second part of the sentiment stamped on the inside of the card.

This second one I wanted to do with a more mature feel to it, it reminds me of a picture on an old fashioned wall with embossing and wallpaper!  I was happy with both of these, as was my friend.  

I promise to post more regularly from now on, at least until life gets crazy busy again :)

Happy Stamping

Thursday, August 29, 2013

ESAD Blog Hop - Holiday Packaging

Well it's time for another ESAD Blog Hop to celebrate the start of the new Seasonal Catalogue in Australia and New Zealand.  Whether you have come from visiting Keryn's blog Keryn's Cards, or are starting here, just follow the link at the bottom of each post to hop around the wonderful creations with some of these new products.

I thought I would show you two of the new Gift Boxes available in the new catalogue, these are similar to the boxes available in the main catalogue but come in different sizes, and this first one, Decorative Window Gift Box (p36) comes with a built in window!  I have used DSP from the Winter Frost DSP Stack and the smallest snowflake from Festive Flurry stamp set.  These are so pretty and come with a matching set of Framelits, so no need for fussy cutting!!! In the centre of the snowflake is one of the most beautiful embellishments so far Frosted Finishes Embellishments.  I have added some seam binding and a couple of tags punched from That's the Ticket.

My second project is made using one of the Extra-Large Gift Boxes (p37), all of the boxes come flat and ready to assemble, which makes adjusting their size really easy.  For this project I cut the box into two separate pieces,  by doing this you get two boxes for the price of one! I have used the smaller box to make a gift set of Christmas cards and tags. By cutting the box 1" from the bottom and making a clear lid from Window Sheet I was able to fit in a set of 6 cards and about 14 tags.  The belly band is made using Winter Frost Specialty DSP with some added bling, and an embellishment using the Festive Flurry stamp and die.

This is the first card in the set, made using the sunburst technique to show off the pretty papers in the Winter Frost DSP stack. The embossing is from Northern Flurry embossing folder and the sentiment from Greetings of the Season which is part of the Autumn Winter Carryover List, check out some of the favourites from last Holiday Catalogue that are still available. 

 This next card is similar to one I made a few weeks ago, however this time I have kept with the monochromatic theme of the gift box, and also used the ornament from the new Very Merry Tags stamp set.  This is a great set with stamps that match a number of our punches (again no fussy cutting)!  I stamped two of the ornaments from two of the snowflakes from Festive Flurry, adding a little rhinestone to the centre of each.
 My final card in the set again uses Festive Flurry stamp and framelits combo, and this time paired with one of the pretty DSP sheets from the paper stack. These paper stacks are a great way to get card-sized sheets of DSP at a really economical price, you don't get as many patterns as in a pack of 12x12 DSP but the quality is just the same and you do get four different patterns so still have lots of options.  Again on this card I have used a Frosted Finishes Embellishment and a strip of silver glimmer paper.

Finally in the box are two sections that hold these cute little gift tags.  The tags are made with the Chalk Talk Framelits trimmed down on one end, punched through and some Baker's Twine added. Remember how I said Very Merry Tags matched a number of our punches?  Well these are just two of the stamps in the set, both of these are stamped in VersaMark then embossed with white (left) and silver (right) embossing powders.  In the Very Merry Tags there is also a cute "To:   From:" stamp that has been stamped on the inside of the tags.

I hope you have enjoyed seeing my projects, I certainly enjoyed making them!  Time now to hop over to visit Amity's blog Stampinamity to see what she has created using some of the scrapbooking products available in the catalogue.

What is ESAD?
ESAD stands for "Extra Special Australasian Demonstrators" and it is an on-line group just for Australian and New Zealand Stampin' Up! demonstrators. We love what we do & love to share with our customers, friends, and wonderful blog visitors. We also share what we love in our ESAD Demonstrator community, through swaps, challenges, sharing knowledge, ideas & friendship, and we're always there to help and support each other.
So if you are a Stampin' Up! Demonstrator located in Australia or New Zealand, then please feel free to leave me a comment with your email address and I'll contact you with information on how to join our wonderful group.

Happy Stamping