Sunday, May 24, 2015

Voting has begun for the Design Team Showcase!!

I need your votes!

in the Design Team Showcase Challenge, #12
(it's a unique challenge, as you can only enter projects that were made as a part
of a Design Team (DT) comittment)

And I need VOTES to win :)

All I need you to do is go to this LINK and click the little heart in the right hand corner of my Bird in a Birch Tree :) 

Vote Now, Challenge #12

Thank you so very much and please feel free to share with your friends :)

Sunday, May 10, 2015

Bird in a Birch Tree Shadow Box

I love birch trees - always have.  I remember being fascinated as a child at how the bark just peeled off.  So when I saw the cut out on JittoBear's website I knew I had to get it!  I know it's officially spring, but it is snowing (yes, it is really snowing - and not just a flurry either! We got about 5 inches) here in my area of Colorado, so I felt that a nice spring scene just wasn't going to do it for me. So, here is my Bird in a Birch Tree Shadow Box:
You can see how I made the trees look like Birch Trees
What I Used to Make this Project:
Shadow Box 8" x 6"
Golden Acrylic Paint in Carbon Black
Birch Tree Cut Out
Tim Holtz Distress Marker Spritzer
Tim Holtz Distress Marker in Black Soot
Red Cardstock
Black Cardstock 
Brown Cardstock
Martha Stewart Paper Punch - Bird
Silhouette Machine for Frame
Crafters Pick The Ultimate Glue

I have had this shadow box for years - and I have more somewhere in this house - I bought them off of eBay when I still lived in Connecticut - it was so long ago I think I was still married! The only issue with the boxes is the glass does
All Taped Up!
not come out, so it can be a bit tricky to paint.  But, I taped the glass panel on the box up and painted the wood black, letting it dry in between coats.  I must of painted this box 800 times (it felt like 800 times) - I kept finding spots I missed! But, better that I got to fix them then be embarrassed later when I give the gift.

Once I had the box painted, I set about making a frame for the inside. The birch tree chipboard doesn't quite go to the top of the window, so I measured the inside (the best I could) and made a few frame templates with my Silhouette machine to make sure I got the correct size. After I cut the frame, I set it aside and set about making the birch trees look like birch trees.

I used white gesso, brushed it on, and then used my finger to swipe the gesso,
Bare Trees
while leaving some of the chipboard brown showing through.  After I felt they looked pretty good I spritzed 

the trees with the Ranger Spritzer and Black Soot marker. I thought I took a picture of the trees before I out them in the shadow box, but either the camera ate it, or I forgot. I'm betting it was the camera. Next, I just punched the bird out of the red cardstock and assembled the piece.  Lastly, I used a piece of dark brown cardstock as my backdrop, it was just glued on to the back of the shadow box.

Thank you for stopping by and checking out my Bird in a Birch Tree shadow box.  If you have a moment, please stop by the JittoBear site and see all the ready made chipboard cuts they have.  And remember, they specialize in custom cuts - they can make you anything (I have a few customs that I have yet to use). Also, please consider subscribing to my blog and help me meet my goal of 100 subscribers ~ Fondly, Christi

Another look - sorry about the glare - it's a constant struggle!
I would like to enter my Bird in a Birch Tree Shadow Box in the following challenges:
Allsorts - #310 - Use 2 Die Cuts (the trees and the bird) NOTE: I wasn't sure if my project would be OK to enter, but I saw no where on the challenge site that said your entry must be a card, so here it is!
Brown Sugar Challenge Blog - #145, Layers
Moving Along With the Times - Birds and/or Feathers
2 Creative Chicks - M, #26, Anything Goes (no cards) 
Animal Friends Challenge - M, Use a Bird
Design Team Showcase - #12, Anything Goes - project made for a DT you are on (voting starts 5/23)
Through the Craft Room Door (wk ending May 11, 2015) Always Anything Goes
Clear it Out Challenge - Anything Goes
Decorate to Celebrate - Anything Goes

Friday, May 1, 2015

Lotus Card ~ April Card Chain Challenge Card Reveal

This month for the Card Chain Challenge, I got to send my Lotus card all the way to Australia this month - How exciting!! My receiving partner was Lizzy, a talented card maker - check out her blog - not only is she crafty, but she sings!! Thank goodness no one can hear me sing. . .or is that scream?? Anyway, here is my card that I sent Lizzy: 
I chose this shot because you can really see the different blues & golds in the embossing powder ~ very cool!!

And, here is the card I received from the extremely talented Loly:
She used the correct colors, the sketch and the friendship theme
This month I messed up - I used the color palette for May's CCC, and technically, this card is for the April CCC.  :::sigh::: and by the time I realized it, the card was mailed.  Sooooo my card is not going to match anyone else's when you go to the reveal at the Society of Stampaholics (the "mother" site of the CCC).

I was SO excited because I had used the color palette instead of just going with the monthly "always theme" of friendship, so of course it was a mess up - LOL. But, I have still created a wonderful card! So let's move on!

What I Used to Make my Card:
Blue Card Base
Yellow and Light Blue Cardstock
IndigoBlu Stamp, Lotus, #IND0140PC (Brand new from Limor Webber!)
Spellbinders Nestabilities, Labels Forty-One, S4-468
Embossing Ink

This is a fairly straight forward card so I didn't take pictures of it's creation.  I stamped the Lotus stamp on the yellow cardstock with clear embossing fluid and then embossed the image with the Lapis Lazuli Blue Gold embossing powder.  Then I cut the image with the Spellbinder's die, I did have to cut a teeny bit off the top of the image for it to "sit" right, you can see where the top dot is cut in half.  I still like the way it turned out.

I then cut 2 "Spring Blossom" dies and adhered them to each side of the image, glued them down, and that was it!  Easy peasy!  I hope you will consider joining in on the fun at the Card Chain Challenge (or at least go look at the reveal and see everyone's beautiful cards!) ~ I love getting good mail ~ Fondly, Christi
Another look :)
I would like to enter my Lotus Card in the following challenges:
One Crazy Stamper - May Challenge - Anything Goes
Sister Act Card Challenge - #104, Anything Goes
Simply Papercraft - #3, Anything Goes
Simon Says Stamp Wednesday's Challenge - Anything Goes
Ruby's Rainbow - #103, Anything Goes
Simon Says Stamp Monday's Challenge - Anything Goes

And, Simon Says Stamp is having a Design Team Call - you have until May14, 2015 to enter! Just thought I'd pass the info along :)

Saturday, April 25, 2015

Congratulations on your Mini Human!

Most of my friends are finished with the baby making, but I love this chipboard die cut from JittoBear SO much I just had to use it. And who knows, maybe there is a mini human in the making that I don't know about yet?
So cute!!!

What I Used to Make my Card:
Large White Card Base (8 1/2 x 5 1/2 - folded 8 1/2 x 11 in half)
Copies of Vintage Ads
Congratulations on your.... by JittoBear Chipboard
Embossing Powder - black
Embossing fluid

I had so much fun making this card!  I typically don't make cards this large - I pretty much stick to square cards or A2 sized cards and I have decided that more bigger cards are in my future! I have been collecting vintage ads for years now and I love going through old magazines and clipping the ads out that I find funny (and there are LOTS of them!).  I had an idea already of how I wanted the card to look, so the first step was to pick out some vintage baby ads, scan  them and print them.  I just used regular copy paper to print them on since I knew I'd be pasting them onto a piece of cardstock.
The background

So I took my scanned and printed ads, cut them out and arranged them on the card base.  Once I was happy with the layout I glued them all down.  Set the card aside to dry (I actually put it under a piece of tile so the card wouldn't warp) and got started with the sentiment.  I wasn't sure how I was going to use it at first, so it was lightly coated with gesso, but that really didn't make any difference in this case. I embossed the saying a few times and then colored any edges that didn't get embossed with a black Sharpie.

Then I had to decide the hardest part - I was concerned the sentiment didn't
stand out enough, so I cut a piece of vellum and put it under the sentiment. I couldn't decide which version was better, so I asked some friends which card they liked best, with or without the vellum and got NO help because the answers were tied (note to self, ask and ODD number of friends next time!). I felt that the vellum helped the sentiment be a little easier to read, so I went that route.  I envision that this card could be framed and become part of the decor in a baby's room.  All in all, except for the drying time, this card only took about 30 minuets to make.

Thank you SO much for stopping by - I love your comments and thoughts! Please consider becoming one of my followers (choose any media you prefer) as I am trying to reach my goal of 100 new followers in 2015.  Also, you have to go over to the JittoBear site and check out all the cool ready made chipboard cuts as well as how easy (and inexpensive!) it is to get custom chipboard! There are always new designs being made - stay tuned for some cool summer chipboard cut outs!
Another look - this one has the flash used so you can see the embossing
I want to enter my "Mini Human" card in the following challenges:
Kraftin' Kimmie Stamps - #277, Black and White
Sisterhood of Snarky Stampers - #32, Q is for Quick
Dazzling Diva Challenge - #72, Mother's Day
Simon Says Stamp, Wednesday Challenge - Clean & Simple
The Sisterhood of Crafters - Monochromatic
Sister Act Card Challenge - #103, Always Anything Goes

Where did I find these awesome challenges??? At Challenges for Days!! Have a look and follow us!

Monday, April 20, 2015

Happy Spring! Tim's 12 tags of 2015 - April


Here is my interpretation of Tim's Tag for April 2015.  As typical, lots of improvising (which I find SO much fun!), and I really think the little "band" on the tag is cool - I am going to make some cards using that technique.

What I Used to Make my Tag:
Wendy Vecchi Stamp it Stencil it, Marigold, WVSTST013
#8 Kraft Tag (homemade)
Distress Markers in Evergreen Bough, Riper Persimmon, Spiced Marmalade, Dried Marigold, Squeezed Lemon, Scattered Straw, Mustard Seed, Wild Honey, Shabby Shutters, Peeled Paint, Soot Frayed Burlap and Pumice Stone.
Watercolor Paper
Watercolor Brush - Detail
Distress Ink in Frayed Burlap
Sizzix Tim Holtz Alphanumeric #660056
Silhouette Machine
Piece of Light Brown cardstock
Wink of Stella, Clear
Ranger Archival Ink in Jet Black
Distress Marker Spritzer

Stamped flowers
First, as I don't have any Kraft tags, I made my own.  I folded a piece of Kraft paper in half, glued it together and trimmed it down to tag size.  I put the tag aside and concentrated on finding a good flower to use as the focal point. I have some flower stamps, but none of the ones I looked at had an open enough space in the petals - until I remembered I have some Wendy Vecchi SiSi stamps - SiSi stands for Stamp and Stencil (there are some really cute sets!).  I finally chose the Marigold stamp and stamped it 3 times on my watercolor paper, that I had cut down to size as instructed, in the Jet Black ink.  I used my ink spritzer (for the very first time! I need a bit more practice) to spritz the background of the tag in Evergreen Bough, dried it with my heat gun and let it sit aside to fully dry.

Once the tag was fully dry, I water colored my flowers; I can remember coloring
like that with watercolor pencils, back when the water brushes first came out.  I used more color on my flowers than Tim did on his.  I finished the water colored portion by edging it in Frayed Burlap.  Set that aside and began to figure out how I was going to go on to the next step.

I was hoping I had a word I could use in the Holiday Words Script die set, but, none of them really worked. I knew I was going to make my second word, Spring, out of the Alphanumeric Die Set, but I struggled with how I was going to make my first word.  As usual, when I don't have the products to make something the way I want, my Silhouette machine steps in.  I designed and cut several "happy" cuts, using different fonts, and chose the one I liked best.  Then came cutting the strip into the tag.

I am not gifted with measurement gene (or the driving directions gene), but I tried to measure the way Tim tells it on his blog - I finally just measured from each side of the tag, and then the strip part itself.  I spelled out Spring with my Alphanumeric dies, then attached them all together with temporary tape (I use regular clear temporary tape, so I can see the placement).  Held my breath, and
cut the word out.  That's one of those moments if you mess up the entire project goes in the garbage.  But I did it (whew!) and it was while testing the water colored insert that I realized I stamped too many flowers on the paper.  If I hadn't of put the little piece of light brown card there, the flower made it difficult to read. So I glued that piece in place and added some sparkle with Wink of Stella in Clear.  Thought I was done with the tag, took a bunch of pictures and realized I had forgotten the star! I found a star that I had already punched out of silver paper and attached that.  I debated hand drawing the stitches, but. . .I don't trust myself. So I took more pictures, added the little piece of ribbon and took even more pictures.  That's it! I had forgotten how much fun water coloring is and have added that set Tim used in his tag to my Need ASAP list (which grows longer and longer and longer. . . ).

Please consider helping me meet my goal of 100 new followers/subscribers in 2015. And leave me your blog info in the comments ~ I'd love to pop over to your blog and take a look! Fondly, Christi

And one last look ~

I'd like to enter my Happy Spring Tag in the following challenges:
Tim's 12 Tags Challenge - April 2015
Artistic Inspirations - #129,  Anything Goes with a twist of Spring 
Not Just Cards Challenge - #17, Always Anything Goes
Sweet Stampin' Challenge - Anything But a Card
Pixie's Crafty Workshop - Week 173
Fussy and Fancy Friday Challenge - #137, Springtime Flowers
Frilly and Funkie -  Springtime Die Cuts

Saturday, April 11, 2015

We Are All Mad Here . . .

I knew that.  I have been seeing so many really cool quotes and as I was watching one of my TV shows, I saw one of the characters had this tattooed on her arm.  It's from Alice in Wonderland and after the saying popped up in a few more places, I decided the universe was telling me something. . . or maybe that was just the cat. . .Anyway, I chose to use this chipboard bubble frame from JittoBear to make my quote pop out and express how really mad we all are. . .

What I Used to make My Project:
JittoBear Chipboard "bubble" frame
5 x 7 panel
Twinkling H20's in Mystic Blue, Meridian Blue, Dragon Fire, Purple Sage, Mulberry and Blue Flame
White Cardstock
Twinkling H20's in Periwinkle
Various Embellishments

Cool huh??
I first gessoed the bubble frame and the panel - I lightly gessoed the frame since I knew I'd be using the H20's, and they are water activated.  I had painted the frame and also just sort of swished the H20's on the panel, not sure exactly what I wanted for a background.  I decided I didn't like the darkness of some of the H20's on the panel, so my intention was to gesso over it and start again.  Well, a happy accident occurred when I put the gesso on the H20's it reactivated the colors but only just enough for them to appear almost pastel!  I liked that so I kept it.

I felt that white cardstock was a bit too bright for the printed words, so I first
printed them on a piece of colored cardstock.  Well, the print faded immediately and I wanted the words - needed the words - to be darker.  So I switched to plain old white card, printed my saying on that, and used Mulberry H20's to soften the starkness of the white.  So now everything blended well.
Look how sparkly the H20's made the bubbles

Nothing is glued down yet...
Then the fun part! I started going through all my bits and bobs, pulling out gems, brads, stickers, anything that I felt would add to the piece.  I had pulled a bunch of embellishments out that I thought may fit the theme and/or the
Testing. . .
color scheme, and then put the panel up where I thought my cats couldn't reach it - well, I wasn't so lucky.  I'm not entirely sure which cat did it (I am 95% sure it was Sylvester), but when I walked into my studio the next day I saw that the panel, and everything else, was no longer where I left it. And of course it is the worst part of the room, with all boxes, paper packs and general disarray, so I can't find all the original pieces, and probably never will.  So I took a deep (really, really deep) breath and started again, pulling out goodies to put on the panel.  I made a few nods to Alice and then just filled in some of the spaces with gems, beads, buttons and anything else I felt worked.  So, there you have it! 

Be sure to check out the JittoBear "Custom Orders" area on the website - you can get whatever you want designed and cut out!! Love this option! And be sure to look at the "Products" tab, there are always new designs being added in pre-cut shapes, the bubble frame was pre-cut and I already have an idea on how I want to use it again.  I am going to attach a wall hanger to the back and put this up in my studio.  I love giving myself gifts & I hope you find some time to make yourself something fun! Fondly, Christi
One last look
I am entering my wall hanging"We Are All Mad Here" into the following challenges:
Simply Create, Too - (2w) #83, No Digi's or Stamped Images
Crafting with an Attitude - (2w) #2, Freestyle/Fantasy
Stamps & Stencils - Anything Goes - April Challenge
2 Creative Chicks - Anything Goes (no cards) April Challenge
Ladybug Crafts - Anything Goes, April Challenge
Virginia's View Challenge - (m,5/18) #14, Layers and Dimension
Dazzling Diva - #70, Mood Board or Anything Goes
Creative Moments - #65,  Anything Goes/Anything But a Card
Decorate to Celebrate - #97, Anything Goes

Friday, April 3, 2015

Woven Heart ~ March reveal of the Card Chain Challenge

We are running a bit late this month, but all seems on track now :)
Oh my goodness! I am stunned that it is April already and that means March is over (which isn't a bad thing, just crazy how time is flying!)!! Anyway, the inspiration for this card was to use up some scraps ('cause I hoard scraps, along with most everything else). I had scraps of the lovely white and silver paper.  Yup, sometimes, as you know, all it takes are some scrap to inspire a project, which typically causes me to make more scraps, but I digress.  I made this card for the March Card Chain Challenge and sent it to Dee Shah, all the way in Kenya!  

What I Used to Make this Card:
Scraps of silver floral paper
Cut strips of shimmer gold paper
Cream (vanilla) Card Base
Heart Die from Die-Namites, Rose Heart, #DN-1140
Silver Ink
Sentiment from Quietfire Designs, Ten Tiny Tag Sentiments, #6382  
Sizzix Alterations Tim Holtz Labels, #660060

And I got THIS beautiful card from the woman responsible for me finding out about this fun challenge, Becca Cruger.  Becca is super talented, as you can see from the card I got, she said "This was my first time playing with gelatos", and all I could think of was how springy the card was and what I mess I typically make when trying out something new.  So pretty!! And you all know how i love good mail :) You really need to check her blog out ~
Getting back to me (this is my blog after all!), I took my scraps, made more scraps, and came up with this woven paper to use as a background for my die cut heart.
Close up of the woven part
A bit about the Card Chain Challenge - each month you have several options to use as a theme. In addition to a sketch and a color palette you can use for inspiration, Deborah Nolan (the woman who handles the Card Chain Challenge) also gives some word prompts you can use, and I chose Friendship, again (honestly, the challenge is mostly an open theme - depending on how much you want to challenge yourself).  I have so much fun just freely creating!

So after I wove my paper and die cut my heart out of the heavy silver paper,
Sentiment Close-Up
using my Rose Heart die, I put the heart over the woven paper and used it as the background.  The gold paper I used is a soft gold, so using a white card base was too stark, so I used a vanilla card base.  Once I had the card done, I used the sentiment from Quietfire, stamped on a piece of vanilla card, with silver ink, and die cut it using the Tim Holtz Labels set.

That was it! I don't think the photo's do the card justice - it's so hard to show how truly lovely all the metallic cardstock is.  I hope you enjoyed my little tutorial and please, consider joining us at the CCC - you know you need some good mail!!  ~ Fondly, Christi
Another View

I would like to enter my Woven Heart card in the following challenges:
Pixie's Snippits Playground - Week 171
Sweet Stampin' - Paper Piecing 
Polkadoodles - #14, Use a Die
Sister Act Card Challenge - 100th Challenge! Always Anything Goes
Aud Sentiments - #128 Anything Goes w/ a Sentiment
That's Crafty - Gold & Silver Challenge