Sunday 31 July 2011

CAS-ual Fridays #13 and Tuesday Trigger


Well today I bring you more of Jane's Doodles stamps, using the Garden Friends set today. So many cute images, it is hard to decide where to start!  By the way, Jane is giving away a free digi-stamp at the moment, a gorgeous ice-cream cone, so go and take a look. :-)

The challenges I'm responding to with this card are CAS-ual Fridays and Tuesday Trigger.

For CAS-ual Fridays we are challenged to use a 4 x 9 card, but to not fill up all that space and to keep it CAS:
At first I thought 4 x 9 would be impossible, that is one BIG card. But, then I started thinking about it, and I got all excited. 4 x 9 is a great format! Give it a go yourself and see if you like it too.

The Tuesday Trigger is this lovely photo (Squares to Cherish):
My grandma used to make these crochet rugs. One of her last ever ones made was made for me, and I still have it.  Just recently my aunt also made me a more modern knitted one, which I certainly do cherish. When someone takes all that time and thought to make something so beautiful, you feel the love, and the love keeps on coming every time you look at it and use it.

So when I look at this photo, the inspiration is the crochet squares and the colours. I was looking through Pinterest recently and I found a tip to use twine around a wooden block to stamp, so I thought I'd give this a go to get that "fabric" feel.

Here is my card:
I had troubles editing this photo, the white was either too bright (overexposed) or too dull. I hope you get the idea anyway. I paper-pieced the birds and stamped the two little "quilts" using my improvised stamps. Here are my stamps:

Here is a close up of the card:
Colours used: Pale Plum, Sage Shadow, Bashful Blue, Basic Black

So what do you think? I love these little birdies.


Friday 29 July 2011

Noahs' Ark - CAS#150 and JAI#78


Well, news since I last blogged: I received an Honorable Mention (Cream in Our Coffee) over at the Playdate Cafe Challenge for this card. I was so excited. The entries were all beautiful. It amazes me sometimes, the depth of the talent out there, and I'm so grateful for all that inspiration that comes with looking at other people's work in these challenges.

This week I got some new stamps. . . and you know what that means. . . I had to get working straight away to test them out!  Back in June I came across a Blog Hop for Jane's Doodles which demonstrated Noah's Ark and Garden Friends stamp sets. Of course, I at once fell in love with both sets, and after a month of thinking about it, I couldn't hold out any longer. I have a new baby nephew arriving in the next six weeks or so, so I want to get the card prepared. . .  I might have a few prototypes along the way, LOL!  One of the great things about Jane's Doodles (apart from the fabulous stamps) is that they ship from Australia, so postage for me is reasonable, yippee! Oh, and the order arrived within two working days, and I love great service.

Today's inspiration for colour came from Just Add Ink #78:
Today's layout inspiration came from Clean & Simple FTL#150:

Unusually for me, I added some extra colours in.  I had to.  My animals needed them. LOL.  But the basic colours used stuck to the formula.  Also unusually for me, I got a bit creative with the layout.  I think it is still recognisable as FTL#150, though, don't you?

Here is my card:

Lots of paper-piecing here. Looking at my cards, you'd think I like cutting out, but I don't really.  Sometimes though, it is needed.  This stamp works beautifully with colouring, but I don't have any colouring pens, so paper-piecing it was.  I did use a blender pen to colour my monkey's nose, LOL!

What I used: Not Quite Navy sentiment, waves, and circles in the water. Sahara Sand card base, elephant and monkey's patches. Chocolate Chip monkey, giraffe spots, and all of the outlines. Certainly Celery Ark.  (I also added Pale Plum hippo, Apricot giraffe and lion face, and Pumpkin lion mane, and the Bashful Blue background because I needed sea and sky).

I actually did another card before this one, outside of any challenges, but when it was finished, I decided that I'd used too strong a blue for the sea compared to the rest of the colours, so my sea stands out and the rest of the muted papers disappear, including my animals!  I'll show you anyway, because it is still cute, and I will probably use the layout again, just with different colours. I do love my elephant's ears and my spotty giraffe on this one.  Oh, and the bird fits on this layout, I had to cut him off for the other one.

So what do you think? Isn't this image just the cutest?

Oh, I forgot to mention, I have noticed my follower count rising again. You ladies make me feel wonderful, adding me to your blog list, I feel very honoured, thank-you!


Sunday 24 July 2011

Fanatical about Botanical


Well, the title is the theme of the challenge over at Moxie Fab World - Fanatical About Botanical, but it is true of me also! I love botanical images.  I am also known to take photographs of random things in nature when I'm out supposedly taking photos of my family at play. . . grass, flowers, leaves, clouds, Oh, and there's a kid!

I've been mulling over this challenge for a while, wondering how I would construct it. Then last night I was sitting staring aimlessly into space when I realised that my half-formed concept actually worked well with this week's Just Add Ink Sketch Challenge. The sketch for Just Add Ink #77 is:

So this morning I set to work, and this is what I came up with:

Should I admit that there a couple of design errors that I'm unhappy about???  Probably not. . . so I won't tell you specifically what I'm unhappy about, LOL.  There are also plenty of elements in this card that I'm super happy with.

What I used (all Stampin' Up! except sentiment):
Stamps: Organic Grace, Because I Care, All A Flutter; PTI - Botanical Silhouettes sentiment
Ink: Pretty In Pink, Cameo Coral, Ruby Red, Certainly Celery, Old Olive, Barely Banana, Crumb Cake
Card: Crumb Cake, Certainly Celery, Whisper White
Ribbon: Certainly Celery Grosgrain

So what do you think?

Thanks for stopping by, I love having visitors.


Thursday 21 July 2011

An exciting week for me. . .


Well, this week has been very exciting in my stamping life. I had my first ever win on a Challenge! I was made Lovely Lotus over at For Your Inspiration for their Challenge #8.  BUT, to add to that, I was also asked to be a Guest Designer for them this week on Challenge #10, woo hoo!  Of course I said yes, and then (of course) I suffered major performance anxiety.  Despite that, I still managed to create a card, LOL!  And I might add that Steph has been very patient with my anxieties and my lack of blogging know-how. . . (thanks, Steph!)

If you haven't checked For Your Inspiration out yet, you should go and take a look.  Their inspiration photos are simply beautiful, every time.  This week's photo for FOR YOUR INSPIRATION CHALLENGE #10  is just as lovely:

As soon as I saw those steps covered in fallen leaves, I was thinking texture, in particular scoring. I used layered mattes to also create the feeling of steps.  I absolutely HAD to use the beautiful deep red and green in my card, and that cascade of red across the top of the photo is irresistible.

My card is here:

I think this other angled photo might give you more of a sense of the texture of the card (due to the artificial lighting creating shadows!):

What I used (all SU):
Stamps: Botanical Blooms (I really like this set, I don't know why I don't use it more)
Cardstock & Ink: Crumb Cake, Chocolate Chip, Ruby Red, Garden Green, Very Vanilla

So, what do you think?

Why don't you take some time and head over to For Your Inspiration and join in the fun. 


Saturday 16 July 2011

Happy Birthday!


First of all, a little excitement here in my little patch of the world.  I received my first ever official recognition in a challenge! Woo hoo! I received an Honorable Mention in the Top Picks for this card at Just Add Ink 75. Yay! And now on to the reason for my post. . .

Do you suffer from anxiety when you have to make a birthday card for your stamping friends?  I do!  And especially when it is a birthday card for the person who has taught me just about every techinque I know!  This is why last week-end I couldn't get anything much created. I had my ideas but they wouldn't translate to paper, and then the birthday crept closer and closer, so yesterday I bit the bullet and sat down to create.  And I'm pretty happy with the outcome, so happy that I made a second version for my sister's birthday tomorrow. And you know what? It takes 2 hours to make the first prototype, and 15 minutes to do the subsequent ones. . . why don't I make multiples more often? LOL!

I was using the delicious colour inspiration from Play Date Cafe Challenge 90:


When I finished making the first card, I decided that I hadn't captured Fuschia in the equation, so my second attempt is the challenge entry:

This card is a Joy Fold card that I found in the Just Add Ink Fancy Folding Challenge a little while ago. I'm still working through the inspiration I found there, it was awesome! I took my instructions from Chantell (thanks for the clear instructions!) and more inspiration also from Susan, whose beautiful card surpasses mine totally, so I'll just have to keep working on improving this one!

It opens up like this:
And inside is:

My other card is this one:

Well, techniques used included bleach stamping (did you know that if you water down your bleach you get a different effect? common sense, but I discovered this along the way), thumping, rock'n'rolling, shimmer mist, colouring stamps with markers (or stamping spots when you don't have the marker!), and probably others I haven't listed, LOL! I think I tried to squeeze every technique into one card.

Colours used (which surprised the socks off me that they worked together): All SU - Pure Plum, Perfect Plum, More Mustard (pretending to be orangesicle here), Pink Passion (on the challenge entry for fuschia).

So, what do you think?


Sunday 10 July 2011

JAI75 meets LIM week 23


First of all, WELCOME to my new followers, it is lovely to see you there.  Even though Blogger doesn't always let me see my list, I will eventually come visiting you all when it does.

Well, I'm having trouble today.  My ideas won't translate to card.  So many rejects sitting on the "what do I do with this?" pile. Argh!  I think it might have something to do with the fact that it is an absolutely beautiful day out there. You wouldn't know it is the middle of Winter - I'm in a t-shirt and feeling very warm! I spent so much time enjoying the outdoors, I'm having trouble sitting indoors for the moment, LOL! While I'm still coming up with some brilliant birthday card ideas to be made later (positive thinking), I thought I'd share what I've managed to produce so far today.

Just Add Ink 75 is a Colour Challenge with these lovely colours:
Less Is More week 23 is One Layer Week with the theme "Something With Legs".  My dragonflies have legs, you just can't see them, I promise.

Stamp Sets: Because I Care, Organic Grace, Curly Cute
Cardstock is Very Vanilla and I have drawn the frame with black pen

So what do you think?  I'd love to hear your thoughts.


Sunday 3 July 2011

Fancy Folding in Red, Pink, and White

Ever since the Just Add Ink challenge was released this week, I've been impatient to begin work on one of my own Fancy Fold cards. The blog hop was just one inspiration after the other. Already the entries are gorgeous. It is going to be a whizz-bang week at JAI this week with all the beautiful card folding going on!  My entry for JAI Challenge 74 is using the irresistable colours from CR84FN colour challenge , take a look at these:

Aren't they yummy?

I decided to start with the Diamond Fold card demonstrated by Mae. I'm still not sure how practical this card is (and it is very tricky to photograph), but it is so pretty, I had to give it a go. My apologies for the photography. That is me taking photos at night time again.

I used SU Real Red, Pretty in Pink, and Whisper White. The patterned paper is also SU, but I forget its name. The stamp set is Bliss.

I'll show you a couple more photos to give you the different perspectives.  First is what it looks like closed for mailing.

And lastly is just a different angle.

So what do you think?


LIM22 - Shades of Blue


This is my entry for Less is More Week 22 challenge - Shades of Blue.  I chose to use a recent layout from the Sweet Sunday Sketch Challenge, which I had wanted to enter, but ran out of time. Lucky for me, I hadn't even started stamping it, so I could choose to use blue!

My original idea was to use the Night of Navy cardstock as the card base, but then I wondered if navy blue counts as "White Space"?  I decided it wouldn't really look like white space with such a deep colour. So back to white card stock. I hope I have left enough feeling of white space on this card to meet the LIM requirements, I really worked hard to do so, and to keep it simple and "open" feeling.

What I used:
Stamps: PTI Botanical Silhouettes
Paper: (all SU) Whisper White, Night of Navy, Washington Apple
Ink: Night of Navy, Bashful Blue
Other: Silver embossing, rhinestones

I hope you like it. What do you think?

On another note, yesterday I received a blogger award from Sylvie (Gibmiss). Thank-you, Sylvie! It was a lovely surprise!

The 'rules' for accepting the award are to mention the blogger who gave you the award and link it back to their blog and pay it forward to 5 bloggers. So I have chosen the following 5 people:

And now I'm off to see if I can squeeze in one or two more cards before the end of the day (depending on how much longer the kids can amuse themselves and I can fend off that vacuuming that desperately needs doing).


Saturday 2 July 2011

The lure of an empty whiteboard. . .


Well, this whiteboard is not white, but it IS a perspex notice board, and it WAS empty when I brought it home. . .

Yesterday I spent a lovely day chatting and creating this notice board.  I usually don't make 3D projects, in fact I don't usually make anything but cards with my papercrafting, mostly because anything beyond a card baffles my creative ability!  It takes me FOREVER to work out what I'm going to do, and then FOREVER to actually do it. LOL!  And then when I've created my version I look over at someone else's version and think, "Now, why didn't I think of that??".  Then I'm tempted to go and start again and create an altogether different version to one I made in the first place.  (This happens with cards also, but they usually don't take me as long to whip up a new one as a 3D project would).

Anyway, this is what I made yesterday (ignore the reflections, it IS perspex, after all).

You wouldn't believe how long it took me to put this together!  I had all sorts of advice to get to this stage (from kids and adults alike).  But, I quite like how it turned out. It's cute and it's pretty.

It took two 12" x 12" patterned paper sheets to build the stripey background, and then quite a bit of measuring and cutting and strategic glueing to build the frame. Then I had to do some colouring in, because some of the patterned extra bits had white instead of pink, and they didn't quite work. But it was all worth it in the end. :-)

So I brought it home, hung it in my kitchen to display it to everyone, and a few minutes later I came back to this.

I'll write you a translation, because this story gave me a big smile and big laugh. The words are as my big girl (8yo) wrote them, which happen to be a bit of "flow of consciousness writing" (much like her mother often writes, LOL).
"The day my remarkable mother did this (Indeed a remarkable stamper too) was the day (that is 1.7.11) that she did this, happened to be the day that (by the way this is very gross and I wasn't impressed!!) I got slobbered all the way up my arm and on my hand by (a dog) Coco and even worse I had liver treats in my hand so my hand and all the way up my arm IT all stank. Pewy!! :-(  Ichie!! :-(  " 
Then there are lots of Love U and Missed U messages for her Dad because he was coming home last night after a week away and the girls missed him.  My girls make me smile and they fill my heart with love.

Now back to housework, and perhaps a little stamping, for me.