Monday, April 30, 2012

Monstah Birthday

The other day, Lauren commented on one of my shaped cards that it would be the perfect technique for a monstah card. OF COURSE! So in between bagging cards, doing laundry, playing with Washi tape, straightening up to try to find something I still haven't found, and making cards and blogging them this past weekend, I drew a monstah in Silhouette Studio, cut it out, and made this:

Yeah, it's kinda weird. Sort of a cross between all the monstah stamps you see, plus Gumby, plus Lisa Simpson. I was going to make it a shaped card, but the pointy hair kinda nixed that idea. There's not enough straight edge anywhere to make that work.

He has stumpy arms and nice flat feet. I cut him out of a piece of Memory Box paper and cut another one out of SU Basic Gray to use as a shadow behind him. Without that gray paper he blended into the background too much. I cut (still with the Silhouette) the eyes and mouth separately out of white and colored them with one of my Ranger purple Distress Inks. The banner and sentiment are from Lawn Fawn.

Hmmm, I wonder if he needs googlie eyes. Hmmmm ... 

I think this would be a fun card for a kid's birthday. I know one big kid who might like this for her birthday. :D

Also, while bagging cards yesterday I re-discovered this one and re-did the sentiment so it makes more sense now:

Better? Maybe not. Sigh.

Oh, well, Happy Monday, everyone, and thanks for stopping by!

Sunday, April 29, 2012

Unscripted Love

Another challenge, and I tried with Washi tape -- I really did, but this one was easier with paper. I started with the current Unscripted Sketch:

and made this:

You may need to embiggen that photo to make it look less dreary. ;/

The papers are from the Basic Grey PB&J 6x6 pad, and I layered everything with SU Basic Black for contrast. I thought this was a great sketch to use the mondo Paper Smooches sentiment from Pretty Phrases. I added some Kaiser Craft yellow pearls I picked up at my LSS yesterday. Hey, they were only $1 and each card has 4 or 5 different sizes. And they come in a lot of colors. *ahem*

To show you yes, I did try with the Washi tape:

The good news is: your project doesn't slide around a lot. I'll go back and try this again, maybe with different tape, or a different design. Something will be different, for sure.

Thanks for stopping by!

ETA: I WON! I WON! The ladies over at Unscripted Sketches selected mine as one of their Top 3! *blush*

TESC157 + Washi Tape

I warned you! I have Washi tape and I'm not afraid to use it! HA! The sketches I printed off to play with today all lend themselves to using the tape, so let's get started.

For this card I used the current Taylored Expressions sketch:

and the Embellish Magazine Tape Color Trends Challenge:

Can you believe I have NO YELLOW TAPE?! But that's okay, because I have one tape with yellow in it. I used these tapes:

 to make this:

 Now that I see it here, I'm not lovin' that yellow background. Or that it's out of focus. And at a wonky angle. Sigh. But hey, I think I got the tapes mostly straight, so there's that.

Details: Tape from the LSS and also Doily from a MS tag pack. Butterfly from SU Summer Solstice set that I opened to use. Inks are SU Regal Rose and Basic Grey. Sentiment from A Muse Studio Essential Sentiments.

Okay, I'm going back in with more sketches and more tape. Thanks for stopping by!

Saturday, April 28, 2012

Washi Butterflies

I've managed to acquire waaay too much Washi tape, and I'm determined to use it. One of the lessons we had in the first part of the A Cut Above online class was to use things other than paper to cut. Last week I posted this card for my SOS challenge where I die-cut a shape out of paper covered with ribbon. I used that same idea with my Washi tape today. I used these three tapes:

And made this:

Here it is up close so you can see the detail and the shine of the Bazzill background paper:

I applied the tapes to a piece of card stock, then die-cut them with the solid (Darla) die from Memory Box. I cut the detailed (Vivienne) die out of Basic Black, and also the body*, which is a separate piece. I only attached them at the center so there is more dimension, and less of a gooey, gluey mess. I know me pretty well, and that would have been a disaster.

I also switched the two outside tapes around and made this version:

 and up close:

GAH! I left a piece of the detailed die-cut in the wing. Tsk tsk.

So, given the amount of tape I have, you'll be seeing this technique again. And again.

Thanks for stopping by!

* It's probably good no one can hear stampers talk out loud to themselves while they work. Why, just a little while ago I was asking myself where I put the bodies. Um ... yeah.

Another Shaped Card

I don't know when to quit; when to admit I've been beaten. After this episode, I think I'll be fine with the knowledge that I have the skillz to make a shaped card if I never need to. Otherwise, I'll stick to plain ol' A2.

After the owl disaster, I decided to try a less-fussy shape, and used the same balloon shape as this card. I sized it to just under A2 size and this is what came out:

The making of the shape isn't the difficult part for me. Nope. The tough part for me is what to do with it once it's been cut. I usually go crazy and do strange things. This time I've embossed only the card front, which was kinda fun, then I manipulated one of the free images we got in our A Cut Above class and used only the sentiment, sized it, then cut it out of red. I lost the dot for the 'i', but I was okay with that, thinking I'd just add a faux gem. Then I chose silver, and I had to add a few more to make it look less out-of-place. Then I stopped.

It's not too bad. Let me show you of bit of the design process. Here is the image from Silhouette Studio before I sent it to cut:

I lined up two of the balloons, eliminated the extra piece from what would become the inside of the card, overlapped them and welded them to get that nifty attached part.

This is what it looks like (mostly) open:

I think I'll go back to plain A2 cards now, though. In fact, some of the results of my "It's only $35 for the class ... but I NEED that stuff" shopping has arrived and I should probably use some of it. Yeah, I am weak. I hope to have some more cards to share later this weekend.

Thanks for stopping by!

Friday, April 27, 2012

Owl Card

More homework for my online A Cut Above class. This time we learned how to make a shaped card from a digital image. I'd already kinda done that before, but I took it a few steps further and played with some different options.

Here's the card:

This is NOT how I thought it would turn out. It's horribubble. Ack! Let me begin with the feathers. OMG, the feathers. First: don't try this at home. I knew I was in trouble when I separated the feathers from a different owl in Silhouette Studio and started lining up the rows of feathers to get them ready to cut. Just before I hit Cut, I knew I should have welded (joined) them at the hip, but I did not. This is what happens when you don't weld them:

Eleventy squillion individual feathers. Sigh. I started attaching them, and after three or four rows I got twitchy and said, "ENOUGH!". I cut some more LARGER feathers and used them for the last few rows. Just LOOK at this:

WHAT WAS I THINKING?!?!? I declared the first few (bottom) rows to be "pin feathers". The rest were way easier to attach.

Here's the shaped card open:

 It's welded/joined at the handsome red line here:

and it actually stands on it's own feet!

Now, about that coloring. I only wanted to color the eyes, but then I got a hair-brained idea to distress the edges of the card front, you know, for definition. Pfft. I slipped with the applicator and schmeared brown ink all over the owl's face. I had no choice but to color the whole thing. Well, at least the ears stand out a little now.

Doesn't he look like he's saying, "Um, okaaaayyyy ... Please stop.":

I think he needs a belt. Or suspenders. Or maybe more feathers at the top to round out the edges of the feathers a bit.

Okay, okay, since I have a bazillion feathers left over, I've added a few to try and make it better:

 Meh. I'm done. Maybe the ears need to be brown. Nope, I'm done.

This is really a cool technique, though. You can take almost any shape and make it into a shaped card - front and back. I'll need to play with something less nutzoid. This is a fun stamp, but maybe not so much as a whole card. Maybe I'll make another shape this weekend. We'll see.

Thanks for stopping by!

PS: Maybe the eyes need ... wait, no, I'm done.

Birthday Balloons

Part of today's Online Card Class lesson for A Cut Above was cutting vinyl with the Silhouette. Vinyl -- I haz it. I have a package of SU Basic Gray Decor Elements and a package of Chalkboard ... stuff ... somewhere.  I used the Basic Gray vinyl and cut out some balloons to make this:

I stuck two of the balloons to the die-cut multi-colored paper and I stuck the third one to a balloon die-cut from plain white card stock so I could pop it up for some dimension. The multi-colored paper (left over from my Creative Chemistry 101 class) was lurking on my desk just begging to be used, so I obliged and cut it with one of my Labels Fourteen Nestabilities. A little twine, a few glue dots and a sentiment = done! 

We also learned to cut different materials like fabric and sticky-back canvas, so I'm all set for weekend projects. Y'all come back now, ya hear?

Thanks for stopping by!

Thursday, April 26, 2012

Because I Could

While I was making this card last night, I shook my head at myself a lot, but I kept going anyway, mostly because I could. I started out innocently enough playing with my Silhouette Cameo, largely influenced to do so by the first lesson in Part 2 of the A Cut Above online class I'm taking. The second half of the 3-week class focuses on the Silhouette.

I cut a bunch of flowers out of Poppy Parade with the idea to make a row of small flowers across the front of a card, but once I got into The Captain's Quarters with the cut flowers, I lost control. Let me show you the card, then I'll explain:

 The bottom part of the card is a nod to the Partial Embossing class. I even drew a scored line across the top edge of the embossing. See? I was listening in class!  Next, I die-cut some clouds out of the blue piece, then cut some more out of white. This was a nod to our Die Cutting Both Positive and Negative lesson. More on that in a sec.

In keeping with the more-is-more theme of this card, I decided to stick the poppy flowers down and put GREEN brads in their centers. I ... don't know why. Well, actually I DO know why. I had matchy-matchy blue & poppy brads in my hand and was getting all *yawn* boooooring, until I spied the green brads in the same box and, well, yeah -- I used them.

I stuck the whole blue piece to the white base with 34725 dimensionals, then I went to work on the clouds:

This is the whole positive & negative thing. Instead of just leaving the white base to show through the die-cut cloud openings, I popped up some additional white clouds directly in the openings, and they are actually double-popped up to be taller than the blue layer. LOTS of dimension going on here.

Finally, I added some birds (hey, it's what I do) mostly to hide some unexplained scratches on the card stock.

So there you have it: an over-the-top combination homework project. Now that I look at it, maybe it's not as fugly as I originally thought.

Oh, it's past Wednesday night, isn't it? Time to pick a winner for my Blogiversary G-I-V-E-A-W-A-Y! Just so you know I'm on the up-and-up, there were 13 comments but only 10 people, so I used and picked a number between 1 and 10:

The 9th person who commented was ... drum-roll please ... LAUREN! Congratulations! Please email me your mailing address, because I know I've lost it! :D

Thanks to everyone for playing, and thanks for stopping by!

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

SOS #49 - 'B' Theme

It's time for another challenge at Shopping Our Stash! This week we ask you to use anything that starts with the letter 'b'. Think: brads, boys, bugs, blue, banana, bicycle, bear, basket, etc. LOTS of options!  Also, Bugaboo, is our sponsor this week, so using a Bugaboo image is another option. We couldn't really make this any easier, could we?  :)

Here's my card, then I'll explain:

 This started out as a homework project for the online class I'm taking. One of the videos shows how we could use our ribbon scraps to make a die-cut shape. I was already kinda doing this with paper, but I'd not tried ribbon before. Once I started putting it together, I realized it was the perfect card for this week's SOS challenge. I've got blue, brown, a brad, a button and a banner. Not bad, not bad at all!!! :)

I made a second card, too, since I cut parts for two flowers:

Let me show you a bit about how I made this, and also one of my boo-boos so you won't make the same mistake.

First, I covered a piece of card stock with good adhesive and stuck on ribbons from my "this is too big to throw away" pile:

 See those handsome chevron shapes all across the thing? Yeah, that's my boo-boo. I used a new chevron die to attempt to cut the ribbon, and the ribbon is just too thick. You are supposed to use a steel-ruled die (the fat ones - BigZ-types) to cut through ribbon. Fortunately for me, I decided I liked the wavy lines all over the ribbon, so I was okay.

Here are the flowers after I'd die-cut them with my SU BigL Fun Flowers die:

I also cut some pieces out of a brown remnant to use as additional layers.

I embossed the blue layers with my new (and now used) Spellbinder's M-Bossabilities So Trendy folder:

 I flipped one over, just to be different. I like them both!

Now it's YOUR turn! Go into your stash and find stuff that starts with the letter 'b', use them to make a card, then come over to Shopping Our Stash and link us up so we can see what you've made!

Thanks for stopping by!

PS: Don't forget to enter my Blogiversary giveaway here!

Monday, April 23, 2012

Happy Birthday, Dad!

My Dad doesn't read my blog (probably a good thing), so I can show you the card I made for his birthday this coming weekend:

It's a mish-mash of stuff. The central panel is from my Creative Chemistry 101 homework that I plowed through while visiting Libby a while ago. The rest of it I made today. I took two tags from my work table - you know, the ones I use to wipe up all the over-spray from my craft mat - and cut them up to use as side panels for the central image. They were originally rectangles, and boring, so I trimmed them with one of my SU Edgelits.

The embossed card front was done with my M-bossabilities Trendy folder. The other side of the folder is chevrons, and you'll see that on Tuesday with my next SOS card. :)  I distressed the edges of the card front, the shaped sides, and the edges of the inside of the card (I KNOW) with Frayed Burlap, added two loops of black ribbon, and called it mostly done. To finish it off, I added the Happy Birthday from my Skipping Stones Designs Grunge set - I really like those!

In other news, I finally cleaned the gunk off my Fiskars scissors. I had to - I could wait no longer. I went to trim the ribbon on this card and the scissors wouldn't open. God bless Un-Do.   Now I need to go play some more! :)

Thanks for stopping by!

Sunday, April 22, 2012

Say Good Night, Dick

Every time I see pink + orange I think "hippy"and Laugh-In. And Peter Max posters. Never heard of Laugh-In and the famous Joke Wall? Check it out here. Never heard of Peter Max? You can check out his work here. NOW you'll understand where my brain was, and hopefully the rest of this post.
So when I saw the Play Date Cafe Challenge:

I saw Melon Mambo and Pumpkin Pie. I needed a plan. I've been chewing on this one since it was posted on Thursday, and I've finally managed a card. It's not what I'd intended to make, but it sorta made itself, so I went with it.

It all started when I thought I could stamp Melon Mambo polka dots on orange card stock. Not. So I dug out my pack of Sweet and Sour Specialty papers (retired) and found some pre-cut pieces of DSP with Rose Red layers. Not exactly Melon Mambo, but I'm okay being inspired by the challenge.

In addition to this challenge, I thought I'd try one of the techniques from the Online Classes: A Cut Above, where we learned how to partially cut with a die and extend it. To this end, I grabbed a set of MFT dies:

and went in search of a too-long sentiment. Did you know I own very few sentiments that don't fit at least one of my die hoard? It's true! But I persevered and found this one from Paper Smooches:

You might say I backed into this one. A solution looking for a problem. :) But I took a class on how to do this, so practice I did. And again, until I got it mostly right. Here is my finished card:

GAH, that's out of focus. Sorry. ;/ Between the colors and the bubble letters, I'm so stuck in the 60s. I even added some flower brads for Flower Power.

So, for the uninitiated, the title of my post refers to the closing segment of each Laugh-In show. If I could find it in a clip, I would share it, but alas, you'll just have to believe me that this line was famous. Very famous.

Dan Rowan: Just say good night, Dick.
Dick Martin: Good night, Dick.

Thanks for suffering through my trip down memory lane, and thanks for stopping by!

PS: Don't forget to comment on my Blogiversary post if you'd like to win some of my loot.

Happy Earth Day!

Today is a banner day, dear readers. Yes, today marks several important events in my world. This post turned out to be rather long, so get a cuppa and settle in. You will be rewarded. :)

First, today is EARTH DAY! In celebration of the day, the Jingle Belles have issued us a recycled challenge from last year, which is to recycle or repurpose something to use on your card.

How convenient for me I'd saved some frosted acetate packaging just for an opportunity such as this! Here's my card, then I'll explain:

The papers I used here were a prezzie from one of my dearest bloggy pals, Lauren, who just happens to be one of the chief Belles. *waves* I ADORE this paper! *mwah* The ribbon is from Miss Lauren's package that contained the papers.

The piece of stripey paper is some vellum I rescued from my OMG, WON'T SOMEONE PULEEZE TAKE ALL THIS VELLUM pile. I wanted a layer on my card, but I didn't want to completely obliterate the pretty musical pattern beneath it.

Because I'm all about sharing, here is a close-up of the acetate bird:

 You can see I've managed to attach the paper circle upside down. Yes, I have. But hopefully you'll be so WOWed by that bird that you won't notice ... except I just told you. ;/

The bird. Remember that die-cut class I'm taking? Well, after 3 days of attempting to cut the frosted acetate packaging with wafer-thin dies, and failing miserably, I had a moment of clarity and remembered I should have been using a steel-ruled die to cut the acetate. DUH! So I used one of my SU Movers & Shapers shapes to cut the bird. I (believe it or not) inked up the back of the bird with Versamark, applied some sparkly embossing powder and heat-embossed it. Yes, it curled up, and I was afraid I'd discovered a new shrink plastic, but it didn't shrink, and eventually flattened back out. I've attached it with Crystal Effects, which wasn't quite dry when I took this photo.

Why so much trouble? Because I wanted to see the pretty, upside-down music paper through the bird!

Now, about those letters:

 These are some silver glitter stick-on letters I got last year, and have used ... never. I used the gold ones once last year. I tried to color these with my Ranger Broken China Tumbled Glass Distress Stain, but it just ran off the top of the letters. Bummer.

Or did it? When I gave up and tried to peel off the backing, Look what I found:

Oh, sure, it soaked through, but failed to color the silver glitter. Perfect. I had to use my trusty MS gel glue to get these to stick.

One more thing: this card was based on the current Freshly Made Sketches challenge:

 that I turned 90 degrees to fit my tired brain:

Enough whining about my card. Guess what today is, besides Earth Day?!?! Today is ... are you sitting down? ... my FIVE-YEAR BLOGIVERSARY!  Yes, my beloved 3 (maybe 4) readers, I have been blathering about nothing for FIVE YEARS! Here is my first post from Sunday, April 22nd, 2007. WHO KNEW I had so much nothing to say?! To celebrate this momentous occasion, and in my continuing theme of purging duplicate crafty items, I'm having a G-I-V-E-A-W-A-Y! That's right! One lucky person will win this:

That's two Cuttlebug embossing folders and a set of Nestabilities Petite Ovals Large. These can be yours by just leaving a comment on this post by 7:00 pm EDT on Wednesday, April 25th. I'll draw a random comment and that will be that!

Thanks for reading this far, and thanks for stopping by!

Saturday, April 21, 2012

More Die-Cut Class Homework

I've been playing with some of the ideas we learned in my latest online class: A Cut Above. We're still learning different ways to use dies, so I thought I'd share a few of my projects with you.

First up, we have another variation on a window card:

The hearts were punched (not die cut - yes, I cheated) with my SU Heart to Heart punch. I punched them again out of a Post-It note and lined that up on the card front to act as a mask. I stamped over the heart openings with two of the background stamps from the MFT Notched Tags set, inked in Versamark, then heat-embossed them with white embossing powder. I then, with the mask still in place, ran my Pool Party ink pad over the embossed area to color it in.

Here it is, up close so you can maybe see what I'm rambling about:

And here's a close-up of the tag, just because I think it's stinkin' cute:

We also had a lesson on shaped cards, and even though I intensely dislike this next one, I'll show it to you anyway:

 Here are the three hearts with punched-out pieces on the inside of the card:

I think I like the embossed ones better, even if they were a lot more work.

Because I don't know when to quit. I also die-cut another heart at the top, mostly because I wanted to tie a piece of twine through it for a horizontal element:

Yeah, this whole card is a little much.

But wait, there's more!  We also had a lesson on how to die-cut so your shapes stick beyond the edge of your card. I made this:

The butterflies were partially die-cut out of the base card. It's a very cool technique, and I'm glad I tried it, but I think in the future I'll just add a layer to the front with the die-cut shapes hanging over the edge. Oh, the stamps and dies are from a Sizzix/Hero Arts set, and I colored them with Copics. The green butterflies were cut from a patterned paper remnant using my SU Beautiful Wings Embosslit Die, and the sentiment is from a Hero Arts set.

I think I'll go work on some more homework from today's bonus class. I'm telling you, these online classes are worth every penny, and this one is not nearly so enabling as the Tim Holtz Creative Chemistry class was. :)

Thanks for stopping by!