September 22, 2020

HELLO . . . FALL

The first day of fall already? While I love -- no, adore! -- the fantastical colors of fall, as well as the sometimes surprisingly balmy weather, I also dread it. Why? Because you know what comes next -- besides more of 2020, that is -- WINTER. My least favorite time of the year. For ever so many reasons.

To celebrate this auspicious day of the First Day of Autumn, I present to you a fallish card welcoming the new season. 


A completely flat card, it would be easy to send through the mail. 

As a backdrop to my Early Espresso die cut hello words, I chose some of that wonderful plaid paper from the Plaid Tidings pack on page 57 of the Mini Catalog. I was especially drawn to this particular design, not only because it truly reminds me of the fall season, but especially because it reminds me of upcoming Halloween and an icon of that day -- candy corn! Don't you agree? Doesn't it just make you smile?


I don't know if you can see it in the following photo, but the Early Espresso cardstock I mounted the plaid on has been embossed. I used the retired knit sweater embossing folder to embrace the colder weather and the need for snugglier clothing.

I die cut a few Pumpkin Pie leaves to tuck in among the words to add to the fall feel.


Anyway, just dropping by to wish you HAPPY FALL Y'ALL! 
Embrace the change(s). 
And stay healthy.


Autumn
Smiles.







September 19, 2020

BRIGHT PINK

 In early June, the Annual Catalog began its year long life. Of course, as always, the catalog is filled to the brim with goodness. 

One of the items that caught my eye was the lovely 6X6 Designer Series Paper called Flowers for Every Season (page 148). The selection of papers in the pack is literally usable year round.

Another product that came into existence at the same time as the Annual Catalog is a brochure called Make Beautiful Things, created with beginning stampers in mind. Even though it's meant for beginners, I always find something wonderful for myself in these brochures (this is the second year Stampin' Up! has issued one of these beginner pamphlets). 

A stamp set on page 5 of the pamphlet caught my eye. It's called Four Season Floral. I thought it would be great to match up the flowers from this stamp set with some of the lovely papers from the Flowers for Every Season DSP pack. So I proceeded to do so. This is the second such card I'm showing you. The first, Daisy Smile, can be seen here.

Since there are still a few days left of official summer, I thought today I would feature a card featuring lots of sunny colors.


After stamping the dual flowers, I colored them in with Stampin' Blends, Light and Dark Magenta Madness and Light Just Jade, two of the new In Colors. 

Once I fussy cut the flowers, I die cut one of the Ornate Frames (page 182) from Bumble Bee cardstock (another new In Color) on which to mount the flowers. I popped the combination up onto the DSP with a couple of Stampin' Dimensionals.

Using Magenta Madness cardstock, I die cut the word "thanks". Setting that against the busy DSP, it got completely lost. Oh no! Where did my sentiment go?

To alleviate that situation, I adhered the word to a piece of black cardstock. Then I went about fussy cutting so the bright pink word had a slight mat of black around it, which helped it show up so much better against the busyness of the DSP. 

At first, I was hesitant to use black because there was no black elsewhere with the exception of the black stamping for the coloring of the flowers. I felt this was enough reason to be able to introduce a little more black into the composition.


A close up of the details:


To finish the summer cheeriness of the card, I mounted it on a base of Bumble Bee cardstock. I will show the remaining two cards in the near future.


Enjoy these final days of summer!

Summer-y
Smiles.







September 15, 2020

AUTUMN PLAID

Have you all seen the current Mini Catalog, Handmade For You? It is in effect through January 4. (If you don't have a catalog of your own, let me know and I'll send you one.)

One of the things that really struck me as soon as I saw it in the catalog was the pack of 6X6 Designer Series Paper, Plaid Tidings, on page 57. Every single sheet of the two-sided DSP is a different plaid design, suitable for use throughout the year. One luscious plaid after another. I've always been partial to plaids, so I immediately fell hard for this pack.


As an already established sunflower lover, when I saw this non-Stampin' Up! sunflower die set, I just had to have it. Once I got it in my greedy little hands, however, I was stunned at all the teeny tiny pieces that needed to be die cut and put together so it resembles a sunflower. The flower and leaves consist of 49, yes, that is FORTY-NINE, pieces!

About a week ago, I put together my first sunflower (I haven't shown you that card yet), and, even though it was painstaking to create, I had a hankering the other day to make another one. Crazy? Yes, but in a good way.


Once the sunflower is complete, it has such a delightful show of dimension. The flower itself measures only about 2 1/2" in diameter, so it's a perfect size for on a card.

I knew I wanted to place it against a DSP background, so started searching through all my retired 6X6 sized sheets. I came across one that I thought looked well with it.

But then . . . 

Yes! The new plaids! Flipping through the plaid DSP designs, I came across this one, which had a pleasingly fall look to it. So I decided to go with it. 

Originally I cut the DSP to 4" x 5 1/4". Looking in the catalog, I perused the colors that are used in these pieces of DSP, and discovered that the purplish lines through my piece was Blackberry Bliss! So I cut a card base from that cardstock. However, when I laid the larger piece of DSP onto the card base, yuk. It did not thrill me whatsoever. 

That's when I made the change. I cut down the DSP to a square of 4" x 4". Nice. But, what to do with the rest of the card base? I often like to make a square card, so at that point, it would have been an option for me to create a 4 1/4" x 4 1/4" card. Nah.

I decided to use the remaining 1 1/4" by adding another piece of the Blackberry Bliss cardstock. But that looked woefully plain. 

To give it more character of its own, I embossed it with my trusty new favorite embossing folder, Old World Paper (page 185 in the Annual Catalog). Spectacular!


Shown below is what I ended up doing with the Blackberry Bliss area to finish off the card. I die cut the word "blessed" from the same cardstock I used in the sunflower and added it to a strip of Blackberry Bliss ribbon that I frayed on the ends. I used a couple Dimensionals to add the ribbon/sentiment to the lower portion of the card. 

It seemed a little forlorn, so I added a couple of the Gilded Gems (Page 157, Annual Catalog).


In the following photo, I was TRYING to show the texture of the embossing.


C'mon now, you have to admit this is the most fallish card ever! Right? 


Even though we are all going through such tough and uncertain times, I hope we can manage to remember that we are blessed, at least in some way(s). Keep looking up, as my friend keeps telling me.

Autumn
Smiles.













September 12, 2020

HUGS, PRAYERS AND LOVE

For today's card, I went back to the Inspiring Iris set (page 118) once again. I've used the iris from the set several times. But I thought it was time that I took on another of the lovely flowers in the set. The only one I haven't use thus far now is the carnation. Stay tuned!

If you look at the set on page 118, you will see that it is all two step stamping. This means that you have a basic outline stamp, and then another solid looking stamp. To do two step stamping, first stamp the outline image. Then come back in with the solid stamp in the color of ink that you want your image to be. 

For example, in my focal point, I wanted my flower to be Flirty Flamingo and the leaves Old Olive. Stampin' Up! designed this stamp nicely in that the outline portion is all on one stamp. But then, knowing that a stamper would probably want to make the flower and the leaves two different colors, they made the flower and leaf portions as two separate stamps. 

Thus, once you have your outline stamped -- and it doesn't need to be done in black, but in this case it makes sense, since I AM using two separate colors for the flower and leaves -- you come back in with the solid stamp inked up in the desired color and stamp over the outlined image. These stamps are not meant to be exact in their matching up all the lines capacity. By not matching just right, a watercolor look is achieved. 


OK. Back to the beginning. I did not start with the focal point. I am jumping ahead in my story. 

I liked the solid flower image and in my imagination, I saw these images stamped hither thither across a Whisper White background. I went ahead and did that. It was boring. Nice, but boring. 

To give it some pizzazz, I ran it through the Big Shot inside the awesome Old World Paper 3D embossing folder on page 185. That embossing folder gives SO much texture, which is the reason why I grab for it so often. I LOVE it! 

NOTE HERE: If you want a stamped and embossed background, always do the stamping first. If you do the embossing first, you will not get even stamping over all the dimension of the embossing.

Embossing the stamped piece made it ever so much more interesting. Now, what to do with it? That was all the plans I had. Just doing the background.

I then cut it to 3 3/4" x 5". Don't ask me why.


Since I liked the background immensely, I didn't want to cover up just too much of it. 

OK. Now we'll go back to the focal point. 

As I was mentioning in the beginning, I stamped the floral image with the leaves, using the solid stamps to "color" them in. 

I used one of the sensational dies from the Stitched So Sweetly dies (page 179) to cut it out. The white panel against the busy background just would not do. So . . .

Since I'd colored in my leaves with Old Olive ink, and Mossy Meadow goes so well with that, I used another one of the dies to cut a mat from Mossy Meadow cardstock. While it was an improvement, it still was not what I wanted. That Mossy Meadow piece needed some sort of help, which came, once again, in the form of an embossing folder.

I ran the Mossy Meadow piece through the Big Shot, but this time inside the Subtle 3D Embossing Folder, also found on page 185. This turned out to be the perfect solution. I adhered the white piece to the new Mossy Meadow piece.. 

It STILL needed something, so I grabbed a few of the Gilded Gens (page 157) in the medium size and popped them on each of the round protruding ends of the Mossy Meadow piece.


Just a close up of the focal point:


At this point, the card was still not finished. The Inspiring Iris set has some really beautiful sentiments. So I chose an appropriate one for my card. After stamping it in black -- to match the outline stamped image -- I die cut it with ANOTHER of the cool dies from the Stitched So Sweetly dies. (I'm not kidding -- I know I've said it before -- but you MUST get this die set for yourself! Seriously.)

To echo the theme of the Mossy Meadow surrounding my focal point, I added a looped piece of Mossy Meadow ribbon behind the sentiment piece.


Once I was happy with all my components, I adhered the background piece to a standard size Mossy Meadow card base.

Finally, I used Stampin' Dimensionals to add the two main sections to the embossed piece.


I am going to let you in on a weird little secret about me. Gulp.

You all know that I do a #dailycreating drawing each day, right? Remember, I warned you that this is weird. After I shut my computer down for the night, if I am happy with the drawing I'd done that evening, I put it on its easel and set it on my closed computer. If I'd created a card that I am satisfied with, I also set that near the easel. Then, usually, I complete the tableau with the little penguin guy I needle felted. (He always gets a kiss on the head because I am proud of my first needle felted character.)

When I wake up the next morning and go in by my computer, this is the sight I come upon. It makes me smile. If I especially like it, I snap a quick photo of it before I take the picture of my drawing to submit to the #dailycreating group. I had happened to take a photo of this card sitting on my computer with the corgi I'd drawn for the "life jacket" prompt. Oh, and my penguin. <smooch>

I told you it was weird. 


Weird
Smiles.















September 8, 2020

SCRAPOSAURUS REX

First of all, I feel I must explain why I named this blog post as I did. Scraposaurus Rex. You see, my little three year old grandson, Enzo, loves dinosaurs, and this project lets you use up LOTS of scraps. Thus, in Enzo's honor, Scraposaurus Rex.

I just cannot throw away even the tiniest scrap of Designer Series Paper. I even hang onto pieces as small as a strip or a 1 1/2" square. They are just so luscious, I can't toss any of it. 

Recently I saw a card that was posted on the Simon Says site and I was immediately drawn to it. Similar to the one I ended up creating, theirs isn't quite as crazy as mine in that the larger circles on their card are of solid colored cardstock, not DSP as in mine. 

I seriously did worry about combining such a plethora of designs, none of them meant to work together. I must admit that I am thrilled though with the ragtag look of my card. And it makes me so happy to look at it.


After gluing the circle sets in place onto the card base, you end up with something that looks like in the photo below. You need to snip off the circles that hang beyond the borders of the card. 

I suppose you could leave it like this. But, you'd have to make an envelope to fit since it wouldn't be a standard size card. It would be sort of nifty. I guess.


After the circles are trimmed to the edges, you get a nice, neat look. With the popped up flower and the central circle, it provides a modest amount of dimension. But, not so much that it would require additional postage.


Do you love the way these completely disparate designs work together?


I do think that normal people would simply toss the extra edges of the circle pairs that went beyond the sides of the card. I really do. However, looking down at my table at these little slices of cuteness, I couldn't bear to end their lives.

Deciding then and there to retain these little cuties, I put them to work in another card:


Although, just by looking at it, you could probably figure out how to make a card such as this one, following you will find a tutorial on how to go about it.

SCRAPOSAURUS REX 

 

Fold a 5 ½" x 8 ½" piece of Whisper White cardstock in half,  

creasing it well with a bone folder.  

You will be using this as your canvas for the entire card. 

 

Using the two middle sizes of circles from the Stitched Shapes die set,  

cut eight circles of each from an assortment of Designer Series Paper scraps. 

They don’t need to match at all. 

Try to cut no two circles of the same DSP.  

The goal of this card is to make it look like a silly quilt and to use up those little scraps of DSP that you could not bear to throw away.  

Choose a random piece of solid cardstock  

and cut a circle with the larger of the two circle dies. 

 

Not matching anything, pair up the sets of circles, one small, one large.  

Glue them together, not centering any of the small circles.  

 

Stamp a sentiment in the center solid circle.  

Adhere this circle to the approximate center of the card  

with a couple of Dimensionals 

 

Working from the center circle,  

add in the other pairs so they approximately line up.  

You can see from my sample that I didn’t do a great job of this. No matter. 

 

Once all the circles are adhered to the card base,  

use paper snips to trim all the excess even with the edges of the card.  

 

Most normal people would throw these cut-off pieces away. Not me!  

See my other card sample for how I rescued them. 

 

With the Small Bloom Punch, punch out a flower from another random DSP scrap. 

Add that to one of the double circles with a Dimensional. 



Smiling up at you while holding two dinosaur skeletons is my little grandson, Enzo.


Scrappy
Smiles.