Tuesday, May 30, 2017

SPRINKLED WITH LOVE BAG-A-LOPE

The May Paper Pumpkin kit, Sprinkled With Love, was a cutie, just like the kits always are.


The main portion of the kit revolved around nine round cards, three of each of three designs. 
Six of the cards featured donuts -- complete with donut holes!


All of the cards were meant to fit inside premade striped treat bags.


I, however, found an even better use for these cute little bags!


I turned them in to bag-a-lopes! This way, they could contain treats with some depth.


As you can see in the photo below, they are fairly deep.


For the front of the bag-a-lope, I utilized all items that came in the kit, with the exception of the 
". . . because you're awesome" stamp. The gold cording, the diecut flower, the stamp in the center of the flower, the little decorative dot in the center of that, as well as the pale blue banners all were part of the kit.


To seal the bag-a-lopes, I used one of the stamps that came in the kit on one of the kit's adhesive-backed round stickers. Yay! A nifty, adorable treat holder!


For a complete tutorial on how to create a bag-a-lope -- this one from an envelope -- please refer to THIS BLOG POST.

PLEASE NOTE: I apologize for the brevity of this blog post. My dad passed away last night, and I am really not quite with it.

Lope-y
Smiles.

Sunday, May 28, 2017

FLOATING REINKER MARIGOLDS

 I love trying different papercrafting techniques! Whether I've tried them in the past or not doesn't matter. Even if I've already created something with a specific technique, it is always lots of fun to re-visit the tried and true.

One example of a beloved technique that has been around for quite some time and that always provides a wonderful end result is the Floating Reinkers technique. It is probably known to some of you by various other names, but this seems to work for me: Floating Reinkers. Because that's exactly what it is.

It's funny, but it was almost exactly three years ago today that I presented a creation made with that technique on Paper Seedlings. If you'd like to read the post, you can access it HERE.

Anyway, the other day I was inspired to give this beautiful technique a try using a current Stampin' Up! set, Falling Flowers, found on page 127 of the current catalog (until May 31) or on page 143 of the wonderful new catalog that goes live on June 1!


For this card though, instead of using Stampin' Up!'s Shimmery White cardstock, I wanted to see if an alternate cardstock, a cream-colored pearl-finish paper, would work equally as well. I did the embossing in the retired Stampin' Up! Vanilla embossing powder. So, this was really an experiment since I know that Shimmery White is the normal go-to cardstock for this technique.


Well, I am thrilled to report that it worked really well!


The large flowers remind me so much of marigolds (love those little blooms!), so I decided to color the flowers on my card to imitate them.


And, since I wanted my sentiment to be just as charming as the flowers, I chose Curly Cute (retired -- boo hoo!!) for the Thinking of You. I treated that piece exactly like I did the flowers.



Just a little break here to treat you to a photo of a real live marigold. 
I know it's a different variety than my flowers, but you get the idea. Pretty, isn't it?


And a close-up of one of my "fake" marigolds:


There's not a lot of dimension in this card. But, it's fun anyway.






The photo below is from the post I previously referred to.




For a complete tutorial on how to do the Floating Reinkers technique, you can find it HERE.

Floating
Smiles.



Wednesday, May 24, 2017

ACETATE SMOOSH TECHNIQUE

Many of you are familiar with a technique often elegantly called the Smoosh Technique. From what I've been able to find, most of the times this is done with drops of re-inkers. 

This time, however, we are going to switch it up just a little bit. Instead of using re-inkers, in this card sample, I applied the ink pad directly to the acetate.


The great thing about this particular technique, as in so many others, you will NEVER be able to reproduce the effect. Each and every time, you will produce a unique look. In that sense, this would be a form of monoprinting. In monoprinting, no matter the technique you use for your printing process, the result is a singular, unique print, never able to be able to be exactly replicated. 


To do this style of the Acetate Smoosh technique, I used a sheet protector. With my guillotine-style papercutter, I trimmed off two more of the edges, so only one of the long edges remained closed.


For this particular experiment, I used two of the new In Colors, Lemon Lime Twist and Tranquil Tide. I opened up my sheet protector, and starting with the Lemon Lime Twist, I applied dribs and drabs of the ink directly from the ink pad to various spots on the piece of acetate that was lying on my work surface. I repeated this process with the Tranquil Tide.


Next step was to spritz the ink-daubed areas with water until the ink beads up somewhat. Close the protector and smoosh the ink/water combo around just a bit. Re-open the sheet protector.

Then, taking two 4 1/4" x 5 1/2" pieces of GLOSSY CARDSTOCK, I stacked them back-to-back so the glossy sides were on the outside. Place this little sandwich within the sheet protector.


Closing the sheet protector, smoosh your hands over the concoction. Gently open up the sheet protector once again, and lift out the two background pieces you've just created. Grab a paper towel or two and dab up an excess color.

These pieces dry quickly. Doing two pieces back-to-back, you end up with two backgrounds for your cardmaking use. 

The piece shown in the photo below was the other one I got with my process. Initially, I was going to use it for my card because it was so much more uniform <read BORING> in its looks. However, in comparing it to the other one, which was so much LESS BORING, I decided to use the other one instead for my creation.


These finished backgrounds do bend up slightly at the edges. But, if it is adhered securely in place upon its base, you will never realize how warped it is.


Because I wanted this smooshed background to be the star of my finished card, and not have too much of it covered up, I opted to use silhouettes of foliage cut with a Sizzix die for my focal point.


I MUST point out that I made the little black dots on the background! I'd purchased a 3-pack of Enamel Accents by Ranger in red, blue and black. I had thought I could make little brad-looking embellishments with this product.

The night before putting this card together, I made a few rows of each color on a piece of waxed paper. Anxious to see how they actually turned out, I was thrilled to discover the following day that I had cute little slightly raised dots! Yay me!

I removed them from the waxed paper with a craft knife and glued them in place on my background.


And, yes, last night I made several more rows of the dots for future projects. How exciting, eh?

One thing to be extra cautious about when doing an Acetate Smoosh project is the number of colors you use and the COLORS themselves. This technique can easily result in mud. A safe color combination to use is that of the primary colors: red, blue and yellow. You can use all three or any combination of two of them. These colors play pretty well together if not mixed TOO much. Otherwise, you are always safe if you use similar colors, such as all greens, as I did in my card.

Are you going to give this fun -- but messy -- technique a try? 

Since Stampin' Up! is re-introducing their Glossy Card Stock in their upcoming big catalog (going live June 1!), I thought this would be a great time to re-introduce this old classic technique, but with a little bit of a twist. Have fun!

Smoosh-y
Smiles.

Sunday, May 21, 2017

WEAVING AS EMBELLISHMENT

I get inspiration for my card ideas from many different places. Sometimes the ideas just pop into my head on their own. I am so thrilled when that happens!

The other day I was looking at an old tutorial for doing weaving with paper strips. All of a sudden it occurred to me that that would be a good thing to do on a card.

After doing a brief search through my retired Stampin' Up! cardstock, I came up with this sort of strange color combination. Strange, yes. But I liked it, so decided to proceed.

I cut a pile of 1/4" wide strips of each of the colors. Upon a solid base that measured 2 1/2" x 5 1/2", I did my weaving. To start with the process, I adhered the ends of alternating colors close together across the 2 1/2" span. Then I set to weaving, alternating the colors the same as the initial ones at the top. 


To continue with my color combo, I incorporated all three of the colors in the rest of the card too. 


After I'd finished the weaving process, and trimming and adhering all the edges, I did not like the way it looked. It was way too flat, totally devoid of any personality whatsoever. To alleviate that situation, I grabbed one of my Sakura Pigma pens and drew lines alongside each of the woven "squares" in an attempt to make it look more like a basket. 


The drawn-in lines were an improvement, but still not enough oompf. I hit upon adding little black dots hither and thither to give it a bit more personality. I liked the way that looked enough to use it.


So, I adhered my woven piece to the bottom of the card, adding solid green strips at the top and bottom to finish off the look.


Then I was left to finish the rest of the card. The bit of seam binding ribbon above the weaving added a nice touch. 


I decided to die cut the word "sunshine" in one of the colors and added that to the center above the ribbon. It was still way too naked looking. So, I took one of the left over pink 1/4" strips and adhered it to a wider piece of the purple. I used my little retired banner punch to punch out two banners. These were added on either side of the word. 

Cute, but . . . 

OK. I had dots and lines within the weaving area. so I went to work echoing that same feel in the word and the banners. There! Now I was happy with the end result!


And, here you go with the final card. Not exactly a work of art, but it's sorta cute, eh?


Have you ever incorporated paper weaving into any of your card designs? After seeing my example, do you think you'll be giving it a try?

Woven
Smiles.

Wednesday, May 17, 2017

WATERCOLOR PENCIL FUSSY CUTTING

As you all probably already know, I L.O.V.E. fussy cutting. The set, You've Got This, is such a classy set, and the flower in it just screams to be fussy cut. Against the sketchy background, it works so well.








Would you like to try your hand at creating a card similar to this? Here's how:

SUPPLIES: 
You've Got This stamp set

Whisper White cardstock
Old Olive cardstock

Black StazOn ink
Smoky Slate ink
Watercolor Pencils

Stampin' Dimensionals
Paper Snips
Aqua Painter

DIRECTIONS: 
Fold a 5 1/2" x 8 1/2" piece of Whisper White cardstock in half, creasing it well with a bone folder.

Add a 5 1/4" x 4" piece of Old Olive cardstock to the card base.

In Smoky Slate ink, stamp the scribbled background onto a 3 3/4" x 5" piece of Whisper White cardstock.

On a scrap of Whisper White cardstock, stamp the flower image with Black StazOn ink. With the Watercolor Pencils, color in the flower; use Melon Mambo to color a line deepest into the flower on each petal. With an Aqua Painter, gently feather the color towards the uncolored edge. Once that is all dry, add a little Rich Razzleberry in the same spots and repeat with the Aqua Painter. You can do this as many times as you want until you get the desired darkness of the color. 

Repeat this same procedure with the leaves. 

Add color to the center of the flower. Fussy cut the flower, leaving no white at the edges.

Add the cut-out flower over the scribbled bakground by applying very thin pieces of Stampin' Dimensionals at various points on the flower.


There! Now you have a beautiful card that can be used for virtually any occasion.

Fussy-Cut
Smiles.

Sunday, May 14, 2017

A MOTHER'S DAY BOUQUET

I just wanted to send all you moms out there 
wishes for a Happy Mother's Day!

The card shown below is the one I created and sent to my mom for her special day. 

It started out as another of those random pieces of the Inside the Lines DSP I'd cut up for a project at a recent Stamp-In workshop. Other samples of the Copic coloring I did on those leftover pieces can be found HERE and HERE









I just wanted to share these flowers with all of you.


Well, moms, enjoy your day! Love to all of you!

Loving
Smiles.