Thursday, February 23, 2017

It's irritating when. . .

A good blogland friend of mine has been struggling with some health issues so I decided to make her a get well card.  I recently bought this Newton's Nook Designs set from another blogger who was getting rid of it and ever since I got it, I've had this type of card in the back of my head.  It feels good to get it out and my head appreciates the room I've made :) 

What I Used to Make my Card:
Kraft Card Base
Tim Holtz Ideaology Motif Paper - wood grain (discontinued but available)
DCWV Chalk Stack
Ellison LetterEase Helvetica Medium White Letter Stickers (discontinued)
Distress Paint in Gathered Twigs
Computer Generated Text
Newton's Nook Naughty Newton Stamp Set
Newton's Nook Naughty Newton Die Set
Ranger Archival Ink in Jet Black
DCWV Le Tres Chic Stack 12 x 12 (Amazon link but available elsewhere)
Clean Color Markers in Mid Brown, Beige and Oatmeal
White Gel Pen

The best thing about this card, aside from the fact that it is a get well card is that I got to use something old (very. very old) and something brand new to me in making it.  The white letter stickers have got to be at least 11 years old and as I said prior, the Naughty Newton set is new to me.  I love when I can use up some old stash to make room for some new stuff.  I started this card by
Another look 
stamping the kitties on cardstock in Jet Black ink.  I set them aside and started to brainstorm how I was going to make the chalkboard; I knew there was no way I was going to write on it as I definitely would have messed up somehow, so I computer generated the front and the saying on the inside.  I don't typically write on the inside of my cards but this one kinda needed a bit more explanation.  I used the DCWV Chalk stack for the actual board and wrote the lead part of the sentiment with the Ellison stickers.  I attached the second half at the bottom ensuring I had plenty of room for the scratches.  I wanted the chalk board to look like a chalk board so I dug out the wood grain pattern from the Motif paper and colored it with the Gathered Twigs paint.  I stuck it under my trusty tile to dry and stay flat.  

While that was drying I went back to the kitties.  The kitties that I chose to use already have scratches attached to their claws but I wanted to make sure the
The inside of the card
marks were visible against the black board so after I die cut them, I carefully trimmed the scratches off.  I colored the kitties using Clear Color Markers, but, since I cut them out of regular cardstock and not watercolor paper I just colored them lightly. 

Once the Distress Paint was dry, I used my CAMEO to cut a square in a piece of the wood grain paper so it would frame the chalkboard. I attached the chalk paper behind the frame and set it aside to cut the background paper out of the Le Tres Chic paper stack.  I wanted something that would give the card some interest but not overwhelm the elements.  I think the Kraft colored flowers on the light blue is a perfect fit.  I trimmed two pieces of the background paper and adhered one to the front of the card and one to the inside of the card.  I put the chalkboard and kitties on the front of the card and used a white gel pen to ink in the scratches.  

I hope you enjoyed my little "feel better" card and I hope my friend enjoys it when she gets it :) Fondly, Christi 

I would like to enter my card in the following challenges:
Simon Says Stamp Wednesday Challenge - Anything Goes
Rubber Dance - Layers
Die Cuttin' Divas - #305, Animals
Cuttlebug Mania - It's a Zoo Out There
OLLCB - #222, Die Cuts

Monday, February 13, 2017

Love is in the Air (literally)

OK, so I said my last post was going to be my last Valentine's Day post so let's just say this is an anytime card.  Fabulous.  While searching through challenges to find appropriate ones to enter my other cards in, I noticed a few where the theme was "Love is in the Air".  Ever since I noticed the theme, I just could not get it out of my head! I composed the card over and over in my thoughts until tonight I just HAD to make it.  

What I Used to Make my Card:
Pink Square Card Base (5 1/4" x 5 1/4")
All Night Media Stamp, Catnip, #838D (retired)
Hot Air Balloon, Silhouette File #26040
Scrabble Alphabet - Ma Vinci's Reliquary (closed)

Wendy Vecchi Red Geranium Ink

1/2" Scallop Square Punch, Marvy Uchida (retired)

Ranger Ink in Jet Black 
All of the cardstock is from my stash

This was a very quick card to make; it took me the longest to choose an alphabet to spell out "love" with.  What I did first was cut the hot air balloon out using the file from the Silhouette Store. I used dark gray cardstock for the outline of the balloon, light brown for the basket and pinkish purple for the actual balloon.  I went through my cat stamp stash and found one that I thought would fit best with the size of the balloon. I eyed where the basket
Just another peek
would be in relation to the card and stamped the kitty directly on the cardstock. I chose the grayish blue with white specks to seem like it is night time. The balloon was assembled and glued over the cat so all you see is the top half of his body, and how he is joyfully gazing up at the balloon (I don't know why it's a he.) The scrabble letters were stamped with Jet Black onto white card, punched out and glued to the balloon.  I took the panel with everything on it and attached that to a pink square card.  

I have had the alphabet stamps and the kitty stamp for years.  It amazes me when I think how long I've been stamping because I typically get bored with things quickly.  I've never been bored with stamping and having all the new goodies that come out continually helps keep things interesting.  Just don't look at my credit card bills <grin>.  Thank you so much for your visit ~ fondly, Christi

I would like to enter my card in the following challenges:
Glitter 'n Sparkle - #226, Love is in the Air
Paper Creators - (M) Love is in the Air
Dragonfly Journeys - #85, Love is in the Air
Cardz for Gals - #40, Love is in the Air
Simon Says Stamp Wednesday Challenge - Cute
Come and Get It Challenges - Love is in the Air
Naughty or Nice Challenge - (M) #36, Love is in the Air Optional Colors

Love You So Much

I've had this Hero Arts set for quite a while but for some reason this is the first time that I've used it.  I think the trend of cutting the die cut word and making it pop is so fun and now I had to try it.  

What I Used to Make my Card:
Mottled Pink Base Card
Subtle Shimmer Pink Cardstock
Hero Arts Love Stamp & Cut, DC175
Tim Holtz/Sizzix Labels, 660060
Hero Arts Strawberry Ink
Darice Embossing Folder Mini Hearts 1219-223
Pink Scrap Card from stash
Sakura Quickie Glue Pen

I've had all of the pink cardstock in my stash for ages and I honestly have no idea where I got them, I think I got the Subtle Shimmer Pink out of an old kit. It's really pretty in real life and I hope I captured some of the beauty in my pictures.

The first thing I did was cut out the word "love" four times out of the subtle shimmer pink card.  I glued them all together, which was easier than I thought it would be since I typically have trouble lining things up.  I used the glue pen to stick them together.  If you do a lot of intricate work, use any type of cut outs or little embellishments on your projects you HAVE to get one of these pens! It is
This picture shows some of the
dimension on the card
so easy to get the glue where you want it and the adhesive sticks forever. There is nothing more disappointing than to get a card that has fallen apart because the adhesive failed (well, maybe a few things, but not many.)

So, I have my "love" cut out set aside and I embossed a piece of pink card with
This is the mottled pink
the Darice embossing folder and trimmed it down.  I made the card base out of 
some mottled pink card I found in my stash.  I attached the embossed layer and then attached the little sentiment that I stamped and die cut. Lastly, the layered "love" was glued on and the card was done.  The technique of popping the word die was easier than I thought and the look is rather striking; I hope the trend sticks around a while longer. 

Another look at the card. The colors
 aren't as true as in the top card.
Thank you SO much for visiting my blog. I hope I inspired you to try something new or play with something old. And I don't know about you, but I am burned out on Valentine's Day. I think I've seen enough love and hearts for a while! Fondly, Christi

I would like to support these challenges by entering my Love You So Much Card:
a2z Scrapbooking Monthly Challenge - (M) Any Shade of Red (entry #2)
The Artistic Stamper - (M) Love Hearts 
Die Cut Diva's - (M) Use Red or Pink
Mod Squad Challenge - Use Wet or Dry Embossing (Texturize)
Crafty Cardmakers - #182, Add Some Texture
A Blog Named Hero - (M) CAS Challenge (entry #2)

Very Special thanks to my editor, Nana Connie <3 
Need to find some challenges? Take a look at Challenges for Days - the easy to read, easy to use challenges blog.  We are always looking for new challenges and new people to help out. We'd appreciate it if you'd help us spread the word! 

Sunday, February 12, 2017

Black & White Valentine

One of my favorite things about crafting is using unexpected colors or materials to create something.  I'm not a big fan of pink (I'm sorry!) and I didn't want something too "lovey" or "frilly" on the Valentine I was making for my honey. So, what better combination than black and white?

What I Used to Make my Card:
White Card Base
Spellbinders Draping Vines Elements #S5-234
Sentiment Stamp from Great Impressions, #C230 (I think it's discontinued)
Tim Holtz/Sizzix Alterations. Labels, #660060
Ranger Archival Ink in Jet Black
Black Cardstock
Pop Dots
Showing some dimension

This was a very easy card to make and I feel that the monochromatic color scheme is very elegant.  First, I die cut the flourishes using the Spellbinders set, out of black card, and then attached them onto the card base. Then I stamped the sentiment on some white card, die cut it with one of the Labels in the Tim Holtz/ Sizzix set and Pop Dotted it onto the card.  This is the first time I am using the Draping Vines set and I can see that I will be using that set a lot! 

So simple but striking.  Thanks for stopping by and I hope you are having a fabulous February! Hugs, Christi

I am entering my Black & White Valentine card in the following challenges:
Creative Friday - (M) #172, Heart/Valentine
4 Crafty Chicks - (M) #337, Love
Through the Purple Haze - (M) #118, Valentine/Love
Frilly & Funkie - Be My Valentine
Cardz 4 Guys - #156, Love You
Happy Little Stampers Dies Challenge - (M) Anything Goes With Dies

Wednesday, February 8, 2017

Happy Valentine's Day!

This is actually the first card I made with the Kit of the Month from Hero Arts (I talk about the kit and rave about it here). I simply couldn't resist that heart made of roses and I had to check it out as soon as I got the kit.  I love that I can also cut the center out of the heart if I choose - so versatile! 

What I Used to Make my Card:
Red Card Base
White Cardstock
Hero Arts My Monthly Hero Kit (MMH kit) January (sold out)
Hero Arts Ink - Bubble Gum, Strawberry and Soft Pink
Ranger Archival Ink in Jet Black
Sequin Hearts

I began by stamping the heart base with the Bubble Gum ink on the white card panel.  Then I topped the heart base off with the flower detail stamp using Strawberry ink.  That was stamped using the MISTI to help line everything up and I'll tell you, the more I use the MISTI the easier it is and the more ideas and ways to use it I come up with.
Just another look - funny how the sequins
caught in the light change the "color" of the card.

I overstamped the heart with the sentiment "happy valentine's day" using Jet Black ink.  The set has a few tiny hearts and I inked them up with Soft Pink, Bubble Gum and Strawberry and randomly stamped them around the card.  I liked the look of the card, very clean and simple for me, but it needed some bling.  I got my stash of sequins (I have sequins from the 90's and I am fairly sure these sequin hearts are that old!) and used some small sequin hearts which I placed randomly around the card.  There! I mounted the white cardstock panel onto the red card base and I was done.  

I appreciate your time and I would love it if you'd follow me - if you leave me your blog info in the comments I will gladly follow you back ~ fondly, Christi

I am entering my Happy Valentine's Day Card in the following challenges:
a to z Scrapbooking - (M) February Challenge, Any Shade of Red 
A Blog Named Hero - (M) CAS
Deep Ocean Challenge - Hearts
Little Red Wagon - #380, Color Challenge - Use Red and/or Pink & Black
Make my Monday - #39, Shimmer & Shine
Die Cut Divas - Use Red or Pink
Cards in Envy - Valentines

Monday, February 6, 2017

A good day has both COFFEE and YOU!

I just recently started drinking coffee again. I stopped years ago due to some stomach issues and found that English Breakfast tea was delicious and didn't give me ulcers. Granted it wasn't only the coffee that gave my ulcers, but I successfully got rid of everything that was causing them <wink>.  That was years ago and since my honey drinks coffee I began drinking it again.  I try to limit myself to one cup a day (unless I'm going out with my sister - then an ice cold, sweet, coffee drink is a must) and I still crave Dunkin' Donuts over Starbucks (Dunkin' Donuts are far and few between out here in Colorado.)  I felt that this adorable card could be given to anyone with whom that you enjoy a cup of coffee.

What I Used to Make my Card:
Kraft Card Base
StampCouture Small Cup with Foam Heart (Brand New)
Sentiment from STAMPlorations Literary Caffeine-Ations (Big Grins by Becca Cruger) (First Time Using the Set)
Brown Card (2 shades from stash)
Distress Marker in Festive Berries
Versamark Ink
Ranger Archival Ink in Jet Black
Pop Dots

My Custom Stamp
I recently needed to get a new "Stamped by Christi" stamp for the back of my cards.  My old one had finally seen enough ink and I put it to rest.  I love to support small businesses, and I found StampCouture on Etsy, to make it even more special they are practically local to me! Honestly, I had contacted - via Etsy contact - every manufacturer of custom stamps in the USA that were listed and they were the ONLY ones who got back to me!  But I am SO glad they did because I had many conversations with them about how I wanted the stamp to look and they were fabulous to work with.  While I was waiting for my custom stamp I browsed their shop and just had to pick up a few more stamps - this adorable coffee cup with the foam heart being one of them. The others are patiently waiting their chance to be used.  I highly recommend StampCouture if you ever need any custom stamps or if you are in need of some adorable little whimsical stamps. They kept in contact with me, even through the busy holiday season, where extremely helpful and the prices were very reasonable (and I get no commission from any manufacturer or company just because I link to or write about them!)

OK, now back to the card.  I used one of the coordinating brown papers from my stash and stamped the small coffee cup with Versamark ink sort of in a
Another Look at the Card
pattern, but I wasn't too careful about the placement of the cups.  Once that was finished, I trimmed the panel to fit the card (since I always use A2, 5 1/2" x 4 1/4" cards, I typically trim a panel to 5 1/4" x 4". If the card size or panel sizes are different, I will mention it in my post. Taking the Festive Berries Distress Marker, I chose one of the cups and colored in just the heart portion.

I then stamped the sentiment and the coffee cup onto a darker brown cardstock using the Jet Black ink. I used some thin Pop Dots to adhere the panel to the card.  Making this card brought back so many memories of when I first began stamping - the awe of watching embossing powder melt for the first time, finding amazing products like chalk, Versamark ink and the pure wonder of the entire art form.  It has inspired me to play with some of the products that were around when I first began stamping.  So, I'll be breaking out cool stuff like Shrink Plastic, Veggie Leather as well as some other "oldies but goodies" in the near future.  Is there any old product or technique that you loved to play with when you started stamping?  Please leave me a comment! Thank you SO much for sticking with me, and this post.  I'd love for you to become a follower. If you let me know in your comment that you have begun following me, I'll be sure to do the same for you.  Fondly, Christi

I am entering my "Coffee & You" card in the following challenges:
The Artistic Stamper - (M) February's Challenge - Love Hearts
STAMPlorations CAS Challenge - (M) Anything Goes w/ option of Hot Pink
STAMPlorations Theme & Sketch - (M) Stamp Retro (theme)
Simon Says Stamp, Monday Challenge - Young at Heart (too much coffee makes my heart race like when I was young and literally used to race <grin>)
Use Your Stuff - Love is in the Air (Use Hearts)
Addicted to Stamps - #141, Love
Simon Says Stamp, Wednesday Challenge - The Color of Love
Simon Says Stamp Work it Wednesday - (M) Use Something New
DL Art Thankful Thursday, #197 - Anything Goes option of Thank You
DL Art Monthly Linky Party - (M), February, Anything Goes

Wednesday, February 1, 2017

You Are Loved

Hello everyone! Thanks for stopping by to check out my latest creation for House of Cards!  This month's inspiration picture is:

with the optional theme of "Love." 

It's a perfect challenge to get your Valentine projects started!  In January, I was lucky enough to get the My Monthly Hero Kit from Hero Arts.  I totally fell in love with all the flowers and sentiments and I've been creating with the kit since I got it.  Here is one of my creations:

What I Used to Make my Card:
White Card Base
Hero Arts Kit of the Month, My Monthly Hero January 2017 (sold out)
Hero Arts Ink in Soft Pink, Bubble Gum, Strawberry, Mint Julep & Tide Pool
Distress Ink in Cracked Pistachio, Spun Sugar, Picked Raspberry & Candied Apple
Ranger Archival Ink in Jet Black
Distress Marker in Spun Sugar
Patterned Paper from my Stash
Corner Punch
Clear Wink of Stella 

I went crazy making those adorable flowers and leaves.  Reminds me of the Two Step Stampin' from Stampin' Up! way back when I was a demonstrator for that company.  It is MUCH easier now, using clear stamps and the MISTI.  I was making three and four flowers at a time.  I really enjoyed messing around with all the color combinations. You will be seeing these flowers many more times - I have a bunch of them all ready to go!  Deciding what container to put them in was the hardest part of this card.  I dug through my stash and found a scrap of really old paper from Somerset Studio magazine. It's difficult to see the subtle pattern, but it's got some pinks and whites in it. I stamped the flower wrap in Bubble Gum ink and then die cut it.  I colored the bow using a Distress Marker in Spun Sugar.  

Then, I set about using some of my flowers and leaves.  I would position everything and then go look for a pink paper to match the roses so when I came back to the bouquet again I would either love it or start over.  For me,  when I'm
Just Another Look

undecided about something, I like to leave it and go back to it later.  I found a nice pink paper in my stash, trimmed it down and used an old corner punch to notch the corners.  

I went back to my MISTI and stamped the sentiment in Strawberry at the bottom of the pink paper so my bouquet would be above it.  I glued the wrap for the flowers down first, then all the flowers and leaves got attached.  I swiped the Wink of Stella pen over the flowers and around the sentiment (in fact, if you look close you can see the Wink of Stella around "You are Loved").  I had so much fun playing with this kit that I subscribed to the My Monthly Hero Kit.  Now I'll get one every month.  

I hope you will join us at House of Cards, you have ALL month to join and play, and be sure to check back each Tuesday for some more inspiration from the Design Team.  Thanks so much!  Christi

A special shout out to my good friend Nana Connie - she's a gem! Pop over and check out her blog (just click on her name).

I am entering my You Are Loved card in the following challenges:
Simon Says Stamp Wednesday Challenge - The Color of Love
Frilly & Funkie - Be My Valentine
Die Cuttin' Divas - Anything Goes
Simon Says Stamp Work it Wednesday - (M) Make Something With a New Product
Darnell's NBUS #10 - Anything Goes or Theme (The Hero Arts Kit is my NBUS item - this is the first project I used it for)