Sunday, July 31, 2011

Fifth Avenue Floral, Over Easy

I have had an incredibly busy, yet awesomely unproductive day. I hate intensely dislike it when my Sundays go like that. I have tried to CASE no fewer that 5 different cards, by SU Demos no less, and failed in every execution. Much card stock has been sacrificed today in the Captain's Quarters.

The last sheet of card stock gave it's life for this:

which was HUGELY inspired by this card. It is so simple to make, yet I kept messing it up, so if I expect The Ladies to make this and not stage a walk-out, I needed to make it work without too much effort.

I mean, how simple is it to ink up an acrylic block and stamp it onto a piece of card stock. Well *I* messed it up at least 6 times. I finally figured out that since the block is rigid, it won't necessarily touch all of the card surface. For this one I "stamped" the block onto the card stock, then while it was still stuck, I flipped it over and rubbed my thumb over it to make sure it was all touching the block.

I used a smaller block than the one I CASED, so I used a smaller image from the set, too. I tried a piece of the Pool Party ruffled ribbon under the gingham, but it was too much, so I went with just the plain gingham.

You may have noticed the center of the flower looks a bit odd:

That's because I couldn't decide on Silver or Gold Smooch for the stamen (Those ARE stamen, right? And who said High School science would never come in handy?) so I did a few of each. This way The Ladies can choose which one they like better without having to hose their own projects. I've already hosed mine. In more ways than you'll ever know. It's a service I provide for my classes so they can make theirs right, not like mine. ;/

So there you have it, I've been awake for over 12 hours and I've made one. stinking. card. My life rocks. Good thing I love this gig so much.

Thanks for stopping by!

Details: Card stock -Whisper White and Pool Party; Ink- Pool Party and Basic Black; Stamps - Sincere Salutations, Fifth Avenue Floral; Accessories - black gingham ribbon, acrylic block D, Smooch paint.

Hambo Hoedown #26 - Are You A Rebel?

This week's Hambo Hoedown challenge asks "Are you a rebel?" OMG, I AM! Totally. If there is a way to do something differently than everyone else, I'm sooo there!

Here is the image we got (free if you played last week and remembered to email them your card):

He's an adorable rebel, non? :) I may or may not have still been a bit delirious after sitting outside all day, and then napping around dinner time, but here's my card:

Please allow me to explain myself. This all started when I grabbed that black piece of paper from the Heaplet (The Heaplet, it shrinketh), then I went looking through the Heaplet for a piece to coordinate with it. I found a piece that had black/dark grey in it, but it also had pink and froo-froo and, well, there was that whole rebel thing, you know, so I went with it.

I already knew he was going to have flowers in his gun barrel, but the rest of this card evolved as I made it. First, I cut the piece of black too short, so when I cut another piece to fill in the bottom, instead of having the two pieces meet and the seam covered with a piece of ribbon (very not-rebel-friendly), I opted to leave the gap, thus showing more of the pink, and making it look like I meant to do that.

Now about that shading. I knew I wanted to shade the edge of the die-cut oval, but I didn't know that using that new sponge dauber would be so challenging. I detested the little circle-looking smudges, so in an attempt to smooth them out (impossible for me, obviously), I ended up sponging more and more of the white to where he's kindof in a haze now. I totally meant to do that.

For my next trick, the rebel in me decided MY stitching on this project (our required element - can you believe I even remembered?!?!) would be non-traditional. That's when I decided he was going to have a knee patch:

(hee hee, oh, and please ignore my fantastic coloring, thanks) Okay, then I thought since that little bit of rebel-ness would cause me to not only be disqualified from the challenge, but maybe even banned from future challenges, I added some more faux stitching over the I meant to do that gap between the pieces of black paper:

So there you have it - my entry for this week's Hambo Hoedown challenge. I sure hope I'm invited back.

Thanks for stopping by!

Market Update (730/2011)

I'm baaaaaack! Yeah, I've missed 3 markets, and I was in withdrawal, so I went yesterday, armed with a cooler full of frozen towels, just in case.

I got there early to set up before it got too hot, and fortunately, the Market Master told me one of the vendors wasn't coming, so I snagged his pavilion spot:

No direct sun baking me in my tent! Yay!

After I set up, I went to one of the local establishments in search of iced coffee and something for breakfast. The place on the other side of the green has iced coffee AND yummy bacon, egg & cheese sandwiches, but I decided I was too hot for hot food, so I settled on this:

Coconut pound cake topped with ice cream. They usually toast the pound cake before they apply the ice cream, but I had that whole "hot" thing going, so I took it untoasted. Nom nom nom.

Ready for some veggies? Let's get started!

My standard first shot at Farmer Mike's:

Some tomatoes (maters):

Some Roma tomatoes:

Ugh, okra:

Bell peppers:

Zucchini and some patty pans:


Several people bought it to make Eggplant Parmesan, but ugh - it's so not a hot day kind of meal.

Small watermelons:

These guys are really delicate and thin-skinned, as opposed to the regular watermelons, whose pictures I forgot to take. They walked out of there so fast yesterday, by the time Farmer Mike replenished the bins, they were gone again.

Anyway, these smaller melons have very thin skins, and this one was used as an example of how we need to fix our roads:


And soooo much basil people were drawn to it, just from the fragrance:

One woman bought many, many bunches and walked around with it like a bouquet of flowers. Here's a whole bucket of the stuff:

Sitting between this basil and the table of peaches at Farmer Margie's, I was in a coma most of the day. Smelled soooo good.

Next up, jalapenos:

and HOT peppers:

Someone bought a whole bag of these. I thought maybe she planned to make Jerk Seasoning.

Sweet peppers:


Tiny sweet melons:

At the end of the day, I took home two over-ripe ones and made a smoothie with one of them. So yummy!

Over at Farmer Katie's, we had quite the display of fruit:

She had nectarines:

and peaches, both white:

and yellow:

People walked around eating these - they couldn't even wait until they got home! :)


and Blackberries:

She also had grape tomatoes:

Green beans:

and (gah!) beets:

Are you ready for the doggie portion of the show? (Hi, Bunny! *waves*)

Here's one of the early visitors:

Sat on command, then got tired and laid down:

Another good dog:

and a rescue:

She's just about a year old, and so sweet!

A hot and tired fellow:

Love this one!

Caught this one mid-blink:

And little 13-week-old Olivia:

She slept through the night for the first time Friday night. So cute!

I'm very, very sorry for this next photo. I tried to cover up the full-on butt-shot by drawing a flower:

I think the butt-shot would have been less-obvious. ;/

That's it for the dogs. One last question, though. Since I don't get out much, what's up with this hair:

I just don't understand.

Today is my catch-up-on-challenges day, so I should have some stampy posts coming later. Today is also maybe-make-at-least-one-card-for-the-August-Stamp-Camps, but hey, I have two whole weeks. LOTS of time.

Thanks for stopping by.

Thursday, July 28, 2011

It Takes A Village

I know my photographs are not that great, and I thank you all for continually returning to see what other fuzzy creations I've posted. But even *I* have my limits.

I made several batches of note cards last weekend, and I have tried almost everything I know about photography and lighting and contrast and camera settings (which ain't all that much) to take a pic of the cards, to no avail. I KNOW I've taken pictures of mostly white cards in the past, but for some reason, I have failed all. week. long. I mentioned to someone this evening how interesting it would be if I were to get hit by the proverbial Beer Truck tonight, and they found 85 pictures of boxer shorts on my camera, all out of focus. Yeah, think about that for a second.

So here is an earlier picture I took of just the corner of the card:

It's mostly in focus. I mean, you can read it, right? By the way, the images are from the A Muse | Studio "Hey, Man" set. I stamped the boxers 5 times on each of three remnants to make three sets of note cards.

Please note that the color of card stock beneath and behind that card corner are Sahara Sand, and apparently it's too light of a color for a mostly white card. No matter what I tried, the pic of the whole front of the card would not focus. I was getting desperate, so I whined to some tweeps and they offered up several suggestions. Being an Analyst, I only ever change one thing at a time, so here we go.

First I tried a darker piece of card stock - Calypso Coral - behind the card, and it was better. Then I tried a piece under it, too, and it was way better, but still had room for improvement. THEN, one of my tweeps suggested I back up FAR to take the photo, then crop it down. Since none of my tweeps have ever (EVER) steered me wrong*, I did as I was told and lookie! Success:


So, yeah, it took a village to get one photo taken for my blog. Sigh. The suffering I do for my craft. People, I'm a card maker. I did NOT sign up to be a card photographer. I did not. And yes, I know there are a squillion tutorials and blogs and instructions and ... I just don't have the mental capacity after the Day Job to retain much more than I already have stored in the grey matter. {end whine}

In other news, and speaking of Calypso Coral, a color combo I think ALL of you should try is Calypso Coral, Sahara Sand and Bermuda Bay. Yup - today I wore a Calypso Coral polo shirt with "stone" chinos we'll call Sahara Sand, and my toe nails still have Bermuda Bay polish on them. Inspiration - it's everywhere.

Now if you'll excuse me, I have 83 fuzzy photos of boxer shorts that need to be deleted from my memory card. And I need to freeze some towels for Saturday. It's gonna be a HOT one!

Thanks for stopping by!

* One of my tweeps likes carrot juice, a lot, so I tried it. I do not like it, not even a little, but I can tell you it cooks down nicely for a sauce for skillet chicken.

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

BG + MFT + TSG117

What you are about to see is real. Do not attempt to adjust your monitor.

It all started when I saw this sketch from There She Goes and thought, "It's simple, clean lines, there's rrrrrrrrrribbon, I like it!":

I started with this half doily:

which was still out on the top of my UFO pile. Yes, I know it's not a rectangle, but hang in there with me for a sec. That half doily dictated the papers needed to have black in them, so I grabbed my Basic Grey out of print papers. Note to self: buy more.

I decided to flip the sketch 90 degrees, so to assist with the visual, here you go:

Then things got fussy. First I cut this doily with the smaller of my MFT Dizzy Doily Duo:

It is soooo busy! I love it! Here are the other parts for the main sketch, all cut from the same BG pack:

That long white-ish piece is the MFT Solid Bracket Border die. The bird is a single Hero Arts stamp that has just now seen ink. See:

Poor thing, he didn't make the final cut. Here is my finished card:

Whoa! Step back! I KNOW! I have a few details to show you. Here's the sentiment:

(hee hee) It's from my now-open MFT Twisted Sentiments set, and it's the nicest of the collection. I do, of course, own the other MFT Twisted Sentiment sets, too, but this one just worked today. I stamped it on a scrap of acetate, but alas, it totally disappeared into the papers under it, so I cut a piece of light-weight vellum to put behind it for contrast. It's just enough.

On the other side is that stack of doily parts and the anchor end of the sentiment. I liked the small doily so much, I didn't want to cover it up with a flower, so I used one of my huge, clear SU buttons;

It covers the glue dots, but doesn't block the pretty paper.

As for the sketch, I didn't use a bow, but hopefully the tie in the button will count there. If not, I'm okay, because this was so much fun to make!

Okay, back to your regular programming, and thanks for stopping by!