Friday, October 30, 2009

Sweet Pea in the Pod: 3 Challenges

Here are the challenges:

1) Truly Scrumptious Sketch 19 and Recipe Challenge
2) ABC Challenge "G is for Green"
3) Secret Crafter Challenge 55: "Orange Plus One"

...And my Sweet Pea in the Pod card!  I found these forgotten embellishments in my drawer about a week ago; so I had been wondering how to use them.  When I saw the sketch at Truly Scrumptious, I thought it would be fun to use the small sentiment circle to look like a pea to go along with the theme... so....

Materials used on this card:

Card base from Kraft Cardstock
Forest Green Cardstock
Classic Paisley Green and Orange Solid from The Paper Studio
Parchment Cardstock

Sentiment stamp from Fiskars Clear baby set
Pea-in-the-Pod 3-D embellishment from Paperbilities by Westrim Crafts
Cream-colored hydrangea blossoms from Hobby Lobby floral stem
Green brads from Spare Parts
Wedding Floral stem pearls from Hobby Lobby
Coffee Bean Pigment ink from Rubber Stampede (for distressing)

Cuttlebug and Swiss Dots embossing folder
Martha Stewart circle cutter
 Thanks for visiting, and happy crafting all!


Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Nativity Card: Kazan's Sketch 38

Kazan has another interesting sketch this week at 2S4Y.  Here is the sketch:

...And my Nativity Card based on it:

As soon as I saw this sketch I wanted to do a Christmas card with an ornament at the top.  However, I like the sketch so much I may come back and do a second with it flipped horizontally!

Materials used on this card:

Card base light powder blue cardstock
Winter Blue Words and Winter Blue Snowflake from The Paper Studio
DCWV Brights Mat Stack
Textured Gold paper (Michaels)

Rubber Stamps:
Holy Family (Stampendous)
Bright With Promise (Stampabilities)
Ornament Outline (1995, Double D Rubber Stamps)
Images stamped with Black Archival ink and heat-embossed with Ranger Superfine Clear Powder

Plastic Irridescent Snowflakes from Make It Christmas! (Hobby Lobby)
Glittered Nativity Star Sticker from Holiday Time Snowflake set CLX1305 (Wal-Mart)

Gold Metallic ColorSharp marker
BIC Markit Colors: Misty Blue, Oceanview Blue, Woodsy Brown, Honey Brown and Tiki Hut Tan

Have a lovely day all!

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Have a Cool Yule Penguins

The challenge theme at Creative Card Crew this week is


Here is my first card:

I have also combined it with Papertake's Spots and Stripes theme and
the second card uses the sketch from Sketch and Stash Challenge #22:

I've a had a great time making Christmas cards today despite feeling very much under the weather.  But after a warm bath and a nice cup of hot chocolate, I was in the mood at last to make greetings for a Cool Yule.  So much so, in fact, that I broke out perhaps one of my oldest and most favorite stamps:  Three penguins from Art Impressions.  I ordered it online from Addicted to Rubber Stamps years ago, and these three still make me smile.

Materials used for these cards:

Winter Blue Snowflakes and Winter Blue Stripes from The Paper Studio
Textured cardstock from DCWV Brights 12x12 Mat Stack
Three Penguins stamp from Art Impressions #Q-3052
Image stamped in Archival Black Ink and heat-embossed with Ranger Superfine Clear Powder (the best embossing powder I've found yet)

BIC Markit Colors:
Summer Melon, Misty Blue, Hot Aqua and Margarita Green

Edge punch and Snowflake punch from Martha Stewart
Plastic Irridescent Snowflakes from Make it Christmas (Hobby Lobby)
Lime Green brads from Spare Parts
Medium white ribbon

Thanks for visiting, Happy crafting all,
and as always have a really wonderful day!


Monday, October 26, 2009

Mojo Week 110: Autumn Pumpkin

Here is my take on Sketch 110 from Mojo Monday! This is one of my favorite challenges to play along with, as the sketches are always so well-balanced and versatile. Here's the sketch:
I had some difficulty getting started on this card, since I couldn't decide whether to do a Christmas theme or a Fall theme; but as you can see, autumn won out this time. I may go back and do a Christmas card in awhile; but I tend to get into a certain mode, or theme... and I have to play it out until my scraps of the papers I've cut down dwindle sufficiently before I start on new ones. Luckily I have some Christmas cards left over from last year.... so my procrastination won't have dire consequences. :)
Here's a little image detail:
Materials used on this card:
Card base made from Kraft cardstock (cut to 5 1/2" square)
White paisley Kraft by Making Memories
Green polka dots from My Mind's Eye
"Orange Flowers" from My Mind's Eye
Large scallop motif from Boho Chic Whimsy Wild double-sided cardstock, MME
Chocolate Chip cardstock
Parchment Cardstock
"Autumn" sticker from Sticko by EK Success
Brown fine-point Sharpie for faux stitching
Brown Pigment Ink from Rubber Stampede (for distressing image edges)
Robert Stanley Med. Brown Ribbon (99 cents for 20 yeards at Hobby Lobby)
Pumpkin Stamp from Paper Inspirations (clearance at Hobby Lobby)
Archival Black Ink
I colored the image using water, a paintbrush and: Enjoy your day, Happy Crafting, and thanks for visiting!

Bargain Crafting 101: The Bargain Crafter's Virtues

In response to a question from Glynda over at 2S4Y about good places to find cheap crafting supplies, I've decided to start posting a series of tips that condense much of what I've learned about the exciting world of BARGAIN CRAFTING--because really, scrapping and crafting are ten times more fun when you can smile that self-satisfied little smile knowing you recycled something, or found the ultimate bargain of the month!
While I can't cover all the ways you can stretch your crafting dollar in this one post or even in those to come, I can give a few overall tips to begin with. We will begin with what I will call the Bargain Crafter's virtues:
#1 Patience
#2 Creativity
#3 Temperance
#4 Awareness
#5 Practicality
#6 Honesty
So, we will begin with: Patience.
Tip #1: You don't need a new product as soon as it's released.
Sure, it's in style. And is it cool and oh-so-gorgeous? Of course. But if it's a good product, it'll still be there a couple of months from now, when the initial novelty of the thing has worn off and stores need to start selling their inventory off faster to make way for other new items. You don't have to ride the first wave. It's the same way with computers and everything else--wait till the manufacturers have the kinks worked out and the item goes on sale. Stay just behind the big sharks and you'll get the best scraps.... My apologies for the terrible pun... ;)
Tip #2: Bigger craft stores have an ad-cycle.
Here in the US the big ones are Hobby Lobby, Michaels and JoAnns. You can also find Crafting aisles in Target and WalMart, and I think KMart, though we don't have one where I live. (I say craft aisles because you can find crafting materials in many other places; but we'll cover that later on.) You can watch the weekly specials ads online without even driving over to the store and risking temptation... or paying for gas. Hobby Lobby's site, for instance, also lets you print out their weekly coupon. As you watch from week to week, you'll realize that the ads cycle in two or three-month gyres. Wait it out.
Tip #3: Yellow and Red are your new favorite colors!
Clearance aisles do not turn over very quickly, so you'll get to know the ones in your town like the back of your hand. However, remember this: items go on clearance for various reasons. Either they are defective or damaged, are unpopular sells, or were simply overstocked. If the item is damaged, see if you can live with it or repair it. I've gotten many 12x12 leather albums marked down to 60% off because they were ripped on the outside. If it's simply ugly, no amount of markdown should convince you otherwise. If it's obviously been overstocked or a few parts are missing--you might be in luck. Stamp sets are great in this regard. The sets are almost always FAR more economical than single wood-mounted ones. Above all, consider everything carefully.
Here's a recent stamp set I had considered purhcasing when it went 50% off awhile back, but then declined at the time. It's a set of 12 Natural-themed Cling stamps from See D's Sugar Shoppe. Any one of these images mounted singly on a wood block would have cost between $7-8 and would have taken up a good deal of storage space. As it was, I got the whole set on clearance for $7.14
Tip #4: All clearance tags are not equal.
Clearance aisles work a little like a consignment shop. The longer you're willing to wait, the better your chance that the store will keep whacking down the price until it's at a level you're willing to go for. Yes, you DO take the risk that there will be another bargain shopper who wants it more, and is willing to pay more than you. Think of it as some kind of epic test of will and discipline. Of course, you could be unsporting and hide that nice stamp at the bottom of the bin underneath some uglier ones--but it will also be less likely to get marked down again quickly. If I lose something I've been watching on clearance--oh well. Someone else will enjoy it and there will be other bargains for me to crow over. Watch for 2 or 3 yellow or red tags on top of each other before you give yourself a green light.
Here is an example. These are "Wallies"--wallpaper cutouts from Anna Griffin. Originally $8.99 at Hobby Lobby, they went through at least 6 markdowns until they reached $1.93. They look great for Vintage cards or just quick greetings.
Tip #5: If you forgot it was there after a couple of weeks, chances are you would forget it was in your craft drawer at home.
This might seem terribly obvious, but the truth is that most of us collect far more possibilities than we are able to realize. Crafting is no exception, and our stash frequently grows to enormous proportions... which we only fully realize once we decide to A) Organize, or B) Move. It's at times like this we wind up offering free giveaways on our blogs in hopes someone else will enjoy our unused stash! So, if you forgot about it on the clearance aisle or the store rack... chances are you'll forget about it again. Things that look so gorgeous at first eventually do not seem so necessary when we think about it more. The trick is discipline. As a very perceptive man has said, "IT WON'T HURT YOU TO WANT SOMETHING, AND NOT HAVE IT" (Boyd K. Packer). Eventually you'll find you didn't really need that particular thing--and in fact, you don't really even want it.
Here are a few more recent finds that might help illustrate my point:
Chloe's Closet tiny alphabet by Making Memories: $1.99 at Michaels Clearance
Used on my recent Scrapbook Page "My Brother, My Friend"

The Paper Studio 12x12 Memory Album

You can see the original price of $16.99 here, as well as the super-slashed clearance price of $6.11 (Why clearance items are seldom in whole-dollar increments puzzles me; but, be that as it may...) The album is in perfect condition, except that it had had its 10 insert pages stolen. We will address honesty as I post on each of the other "Bargain Crafter's Virtues."

In the meantime, Happy Crafting all and, as always,

Have a wonderful day!


Friday, October 23, 2009

Harvest Scarecrow

This scarecrow just makes me smile everytime I look at him. I found him on clearance last year at Hobby Lobby. It was hard to actually use him on a card at last! But I love making fall-themed cards, and since Halloween and Harvest festivals galore are already underway, it's time to get them made and sent.
This card lets me play in my first few card challenges in a long while since I've been back in blogland. They are as follows:
1) My Time to Craft "Halloween Colors"
2) One Stop Craft Challenge #51 "Halloween"
3) Truly Scrumptious Challenge/Sketch 18 "Autumn theme"
4) Daring Cardmakers "A Few of My Favorite Things"
Favorite things used on this card:
Autumn theme and colors!
Cute scarecrow with a BUTTON
Cuttlebug and "Swiss Dots" embossing folder"
Some light distressing with brown pigment ink (sometimes I just can't help myself!)
Medium-sized neutral brads
Cardstock from DCWV "Green Stack". And it has cute owls.
3-D elements
Rub-on sentiment from American Crafts
Striped paper from My Mind's Eye--possibly my favorite paper company... but I'd better not limit myself... I just love paper, period.
Brown cardstock--my #1 crafting must-have!
Mr. Scarecrow and his Crow buddie... in a natural habitat...
Thanks for visiting!

Sisters Scrapbook Layout

This page is of myself and my sister-in-law, Crystal. We were both so glad we would now have a sister, since we're both only daughters among multiple guys. Although I have to say... growing up with the boys does make you tough. ;)
For this page I used an old sketch by Valerie Salmon on Got Sketch?
Most of my other recent layouts have not been sketch-based, but this one just fit.
Here's Valerie's Sketch 54 (their current sketch is number 91):

Here's a little journalling detail. The tag is from Anna Griffin's Flora & Fauna set, and the monogram sticker is from K & Company: Once again you also see I've used my Martha Stewart 2008 Snowflake punch to make some interesting flowers out of DCWV Mat. I like to keep some continuity throughout my pages of a particular theme, and these snow-flowers are becoming one such element of this particular project. The chipboard flourish below is from the Neutral collection by Making Memories (Target clearance)... that set has also provided some of the continuity I look for. The ribbon is from a Michaels' bargain bin, found well over a year ago. The sentiment is from Sticko.

The base cardstock is Forest green, patterned paper is from My Mind's Eye and the thin strip below the ribbon is a scrap of White Paisley Kraft. I used a Martha Stewart edge punch. The butcher's twine is cheap and easy to find in and around the painting section of Walmart. Love this stuff.

Thanks for dropping by, and as always,

Have a great day!


Thursday, October 22, 2009

Mother and Daughter SBL

Materials used on this page:

"Wild Saffron" double-sided cardstock from K & Co
8x8 Marcella Ancestry Scrap pad by K & Co
Anna Griffin "Flora Collection" Journal tag
Clearn sentiment from Sticko by EK Success
Chipboard embellishment from Making Memories Neutral set

Detail of flower:

I actually got in a bind with this page.  I wanted to finish it before my piano students came, but I was OUT of brown brads and nothing else would quite do.  So... I took some medium-sized alphabet brads with weird letters on them (x, q, j, etc.)... and painted them with regular brown craft paint.  Voila.

Thanks for visiting!


My Brother, My Friend

Well, I'm slowly getting through all these Wedding Scrapbook pages. It's taken me far too long to even start on them. But it's been great to do them now, and to think back on that day and especially the people all around us. This one is to my youngest brother.
Matt was our DJ at the reception and did a "gr8" job...A little detail:

If there's a color I think of in relation to my brother Matt, it's always ORANGE. It's such a bold, vibrant and active color. Matt is like that. And, interestingly, of the three of us, he's the only one who can actually pull off wearing orange, either. So, naturally--it had to be on this page.

Materials used on this page:

12x12 Floral Mocha Paperie double-sided cardstock (Making Memories)
*Interestingly, I found a great big pack of this paper at Ross Dress for Less. Surprise!

8x8 Specialty Multipack Autumn Splendor (Making Memories)--die-cut and patterned paper
*On sale this week at Michaels... and a new favorite for me

Teal floral strips are scraps from my page of Dad & me
"Wild Saffron" by K & Co

Brown/rust colored flowers from Spare Parts
Orange star-flowers from the Hobby Lobby Parking Lot :)
Chipboard shapes from Making Memories Neutral set

American Traditional Design Antique BI Alphas ($1 at BigLots)
Studio K "Clearly Yours" Epoxy alphabet (K & Co)
Making Memories "Chloe's Closet" Tiny alpha stickers (clearance Michaels)

AND, finally, just for fun while I was making the LO for this one, I gave my bro a hat :)
You can see him in his own hat at his blog: The Ramblings of a Guy in a Hat

Have a nice day,

Daddy's Girl, Page 1

Materials used for this page:

Background paper from My Mind's Eye
8x8 Ancestry Scrap Pad by Marcella from K & Company
Teal Floral from "Wild Saffron" double-sided set by K & Co
DCWV Mat stack
American Crafts Trademarks "jack" large alphabet rub-ons
Hand-stitching with DMC Linen Thread:
Detail of vellum quote (JoAnn's):

I made the flowers with Cream hydrangea blossoms from Hobby Lobby's floral department, the Martha Stewart 2008 snowflake punch and a gray brad for the center. The edge-punch used on the vellum is also from Martha Stewart's collection.
I printed the text on Parchment Cardstock using my HP Laserjet. These little machines are troopers, let me tell you. They last forever. That purchase was just one among many good decisions made with Dad's help... ;)

Thanks for visiting... the second page is in the next post.

Have a great day,

Daddy's Girl, Page 2

Corner Detail:
Text and flourish detail:

Materials used for this page:
Background paper from My Mind's Eye
8x8 Ancestry Scrap Pad by Marcella from K & Company
Teal Floral from "Wild Saffron" double-sided set by K & Co
Italian gilded floral designer paper "Florentine-Venetian" from Michaels
Parchment Cardstock (for text, printed on HP Laserjet)
DCWV Mat stack
Inkadinkado Clear Acrylic Flourish set
Memento "London Fog" dye ink by Tsukineko

Making Memories Chipboard jigsaw shapes (neutral)
Spare Parts Peach-colored fabric flowers (in red set)
Cream-colored hydrangea stem from Hobby Lobby
Martha Stewart 2008 Collector's Snowflake punch (for centers)
Spare parts Gray neutral brads
Many of these materials I found on clearance at places like Target and Michaels. The Marcella paper went on clearance from $13 down to $3 and I snatched it up. If you are patient enough, you can always find good deals. You'd also be surprised how easy it is to re-purpose craft items you think you have little or no use for... like the snowflake punch that made the flower centers!
Have a great day!

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Love of My Life SBL

I had a great deal of trouble finding just the right background for this photo. I finally decided on this handmade Indian pressed leaves paper from The Paper Studio. I love the end result--the "natural" theme of the layout conveys a great deal of meaning to me.
The lovely natural softness of the paper does not quite come through in photos; but I do have one caution for anyone using handmade papers like this: be very certain of your placement, and choose your adhesive carefully. This paper tears EASILY.
I have also used real pressed pansies, which were blooming on the grounds on our wedding day. The raffia ribbon was just floating around in my craft boxes. I think it works nicely. Ribbon did not fit the page theme nearly so well.

The mat paper behind the photo is a light green-crackle that looks like weathered wood (The Paper Studio).
The Elizabeth Browning quote is from a Vellum stack from JoAnns, inked around the edges with moss-green pigment ink (Studio G). When Matt saw this page recently finished with the quote after he came home from work, he said, "I was just thinking along those same lines today. We're becoming more like each other."
We both agreed that was a good thing :)
Have a great day,


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