Wednesday, 20 September 2017

Project 439: A colorful bon voyage card

One of my colleagues for 4 years is leaving and I'm sad to see her go. It's been fun working with her and her spontaneous free spirit will be missed. I wanted to make her a fun card and thought the colors in Color Throwdown this week would be perfect.

I heat embossed a full set of feather stamps in white on watercolor paper and then used Distress Inks to watercolor the background. It's a bit paler than I wanted but oh well. The green dots are enamel accents. I am pretty happy with it, I hope she likes it too!

Sunday, 17 September 2017

Project 438: A modern color Christmas card

It is official: I'm starting my Christmas card makes! I wanted to ease my way into the cards this year so I decided to do some sketch shopping to get inspiration for a few complicated ones while I work out what I'm going to do for the bulk-making.

The colors at Color Throwdown and the sketch at CAS(E) This Sketch were perfect inspiration.

The trees are heat embossed and die cut. The stamp set is almost 2 years old - I got it in a Michaels sale after Christmas. Which makes it elligible for Retro Rubber's anything goes challenge!

The background is blended using Distress Inks and then die cut. I added gel pen white snow blowing from the left to complete the sketch. The sentiment is also at least 18 months old and is heat embossed a floral vellum paper that reminded me of snow. I added some pearl stars just for some texture. Big fan of how it came out - now to make a zillion more Christmas cards!

Saturday, 16 September 2017

Project: A back to school sketch

Hello and happy Saturday! Teachers and students are back at school and I thought it was a perfect opportunity to make a little card for my sister who is returning this year after her maternity leave. I loved the Amy Loves Books image at Sasayaki Glitter, our sponsor this week, of this girl on top of a pile of books and thought she'd be perfect.

I colored the image with ProMarkers and then fussy cut her out as she was a pretty simple shape. The background is a fun paper from Lawn Fawn that I die cut with a stitched die. The squares feature a sentiment that is getting on now, a few years ago Claire gifted it to me.

Such a fan of how it turned out, I hope you are able to join in the fun at Sketch Saturday this week!

Saturday, 9 September 2017

Project 437: A classy birthday sketch and color combo

I have so many friends with September birthdays that I am always making very individual cards in the first week of the month. I don't normally do challenges for special friend birthdays but this week everything came together really well, with the colors from Color Throwdown and the Freshly Made Sketches design providing layout:

I decided to use an X-Cut die set champagne glass, cut out in white and layered over a stitched red circle. The sentiment is from Creative Stamping magazine, I think maybe the June or July issue. The border is punched using a really old American Crafts punch from their Knock Outs series. The red plastic gems are from Poundland, they were a great find in the kids' section.

Really happy with how it came together, I think my friend will love it next week!

Saturday, 2 September 2017

Project: A celebratory sketch challenge

Happy Saturday! This week we've got a fun sponsor, Pink Gem Designs, and a really fun sketch to pair with it:

I decided for my take on the sketch I would invert it so the bigger panel was on the left and the small boxes on the right. I used Cat with Glasses and colored her with ProMarkers. I die cut her out using a stitched rectangle and then heat embossed x3 sentiments from Endless Birthday Wishes and used a smaller die for those. The background paper is Lawn Fawn and the strip of gems is Poundland.

I hope you enjoy playing with the sketch, be sure to enter by the 8th of September!

Saturday, 19 August 2017

Project: Congrats sketch challenge

This is a very fun and silly response to our challenge for you at Sketch Saturday this week.

My friend for life Claire has just celebrated 2 years with us at our company - we've worked together before at a previous company and I couldn't resist the temptation when we were looking to expand our office in New York to see if she was up for the challenge. 2 years later, here we all are! Today marks the start of a girls weekend for us so it's a perfect entry for today.

I thought I'd do something a bit silly and light and instead of a serious congrats card I decided to go a bit whimsical. I used Harriet from our great sponsor this week, Crafty Sentiments Designs and colored it as if Claire was the little girl. I decided to stick with blues and greys and chose a backing paper Claire has admired (re: stolen) in the past. I added a vertical congrats sentiment from Stampin' Up and some string and enamel accents to complete the sketch. I think it will crack her up.

We have a prize of 3 digis this week so make sure you enter by Friday the 25th of August!

Sunday, 13 August 2017

Project 436: A masked blended sketch and color challenge

I saw the colors at Color Throwdown and was going back and forth in my mind for the past few days trying to think of what to do. Then I discovered the sketch at CAS(E) This Sketch and something came together in my mind.

I masked the right hand border and blendd using Picked Raspberry, Peacock Feathers and Seedless Preserve distress ink and added some bleached water dots. I added a few feathers stamped and die cut and faised them on foam for texture. The sentiment is from Stampin' Up Balloon Celebrations.

By making it a birthday card I also wanted to enter the CAS on Friday birthday challenge.

I ended up liking the treatment so much I did it in two other color combinations.


I liked it so much I ended up spending the rest of my day blending and masking so the challenges were truly inspirational! 

Saturday, 5 August 2017

Project: Welcome kitten card for Sketch Saturday

Happy Saturday! This week we have a great sketch for you at Sketch Saturday by Alex - hopefully it will inspire some great projects.

Our sponsor is MMedel Illustrations and we have a prize of 2 digis + a discount coupon so it's definitely worth playing along!

For my take, I took this cute kitten set and chose a cat (yawning? singing? something vocal!) and colored it using ProMarkers to match the colorings on my friend's new little kitten. I added touches of gel pen as white accents. The hello border down the side is an old sentiment I have had for ages and decided that by repeating it there was more of a pattern that worked with the balance. I added giant buttons to complete the sketch and it has a playful masculine appeal now. I'm pleased and so is my friend, it looks just like her cat:

Be sure to join the fun by Friday the 11th of August to be in with a chance of winning the prizes!

Thursday, 3 August 2017

Project: Things that fly at MAWTT

I have been making a lot of cards lately that involve birds, butterflies, hot air balloons, and I realised that I seem to be obsessed with things that fly. I thought it would be the perfect challenge for Moving Along with the Times this week!

My card features a set of bug stamps that I heat embossed in black. I put them on a strip of watercolour paper that I painted using an aqua brush and Distress Inks. I tried to choose colors associated with that particular bug and I'm really happy with the combination. I added a sentiment from Tim Holtz idea-ology stickers that I thought worked well for the set. I tried it on white, black and kraft card and decided black looked best.

Wednesday, 2 August 2017

Project 435: Watercolored cards

As I was on a craft date with Claire this weekend I was feeling more brave in my card makes. These might not look very brave but look! The paper is torn, not trimmed! Small things.

We made the headline card as a joint challenge with repeated image/text in a resist and a watercolored background and her card is pretty awesome, I hope she shares it soon. I got a bit bored with the heat embossing as the stamp took quite a lot of powder but otherwise I liked the combination of colors I got from Peacock Feathers and Blueprint Sketch Distress Ink. The little tag is covering an oops where I messed up my stamping. I liked it better neat on the card but then had to hide the mistake. Oh well!

The next card uses the ripped scrap from the headline, painted in Mowed Lawn ink. The image is a new Tim Holtz that I heat embossed in black. I embossed a yellow scrap in a woodgrain folder to go with the leaf. The little tag is a new punch from EK Success.

Finally I thought I'd share this just as a freebie. The frame is cut from the headline card from yesterday. I used a flower freebie from a card magazine and a thank you from a set I got second hand. I colored it all using ProMarkers and added some pearl and glitter accents to the flowers and sentiment. It's a girly but I like it, it's very different from my recent makes.

Tuesday, 1 August 2017

Project 434: Scraps and dies

I wanted to bring a bunch of cards to my sister and mom (who I am seeing today!) and they said thank you cards and blank cards are the most useful so I concentrated my efforts there. I also wanted to use the dozens of scraps I had lurking on my desk so in a bid to clear out, I decided to make some of my dies work hard to use up the scraps and make some fun cards without too much planning.

The headline was a fun one to make - I really struggle with that big leaf die. It really only works with really thick card and the little holes are an absolute challenge to get out cleanly. I got one clean one, ruined 2 other scraps and abandoned my plans for a set. The background is from a small square pad and I used a stitched die to get a border. The tag is punched and stamped and it came together with just a handful of pieces.

These came together through a collection of scraps. All the papers you see here were die cut or trimmed to size. The green paper on the cactus sheet was stamped using a chevron background stamp but otherwise it's dies only - no stamps at all. 

Finally I thought I'd show this set. These papers are prized possessions but I decided my sister and mom were worth it to use them. I die cut some giant scottie dog dies in different purples and then added a tartan paper with a candy - super simple.

All in all a pleasing collection! I can't wait to see which my family go for.

Monday, 31 July 2017

Project 433: A blue/circle/animal tic tac toe challenge

I love following along with The Paper Players as their challenges are always fun and accessible. This week they have a Tic Tac Toe and I thought it would be a great way to play along.

I chose the bottom row: Blue Animal Circle

I heat embossed my hummingbird stamp, and then die cut it and layered it over a blue stitched die. The background is watercolored using Salty Ocean and Blueprint Sketch Distress Inks. I added a few enamel dots and a little thank you stamp to complete it. I love the simplicity of it, it's a simple but pretty card. It's the first card from my playdate with Claire, she really helped with the inspiration.

Sunday, 30 July 2017

Project 432: super CAS challenge

I saw a number of challenges that I thought would combine for a fun CAS card.

I took the colours from Color Throwdown, the sketch from Freshly Made Sketches and the challenge of 'no stamps, only dies' from CAS-UAL Fridays to come up with my entry.

I masked a stripe diagonally down the page and used Mustard Seed and Picked Raspberry Distress Inks to blend the stripe. The sentiment is die cut from Stamping Up set and I added pearl accents for texture. I am really pleased with the blending and mask result, I may even make a few more of these as a set.. ..

Thursday, 27 July 2017

Project 431: A sunset surfer anniversary card

A colleague remembered her 5 year anniversary a bit late in the day - specifically it was 6:15 on a Wednesday for her anniversary on Thursday!

She was in a fast-paced brainstorm, listing things about their relationship and dates and we were trying to come up with gift ideas. She mentioned their first date was surfing and involved tequila shots on the beach and I thought: that would make a great card.

I started by paper cutting a surfer and surf board in black paper, then cut out my shot glasses and limes. I added glitter glue to represent the tequila and added white gel pen to the limes. I watercolored using Distress Inks to get the sunset and beach motif. The sentiment is die cut using white stock and I split it over the background and kraft card blank.

My colleague was really tickled by it so I'm pleased it worked out.

Sunday, 23 July 2017

Project 430: A piñata sketch and color challenge

Claire recently bought me this fantastic little piñata set from Lawn Fawn and I was saving it for a birthday card for a colleague who I knew would appreciate it. 

Because the image and sentiment are relatively small I wanted to look at some sketches where things would be concentrated in one area so it wouldn't look too distant. I found a great one in CAS(E) This Sketch and then by magic the colors at Color Throwdown this week were a perfect complement to what I wanted to do:

I started with a stamp of the image and then colored it with ProMarkers and die cut it with the matching dies. I used foam tape to pop it out and then die cut stitched squares in white and turquoise to get the central panel. I used Enamel Accents to add confetti around the 'Smash!' part of the sentiment and large enamel dots to frame the central panel. The background paper is American Crafts and I have been saving it for a special occasion - I've loved the pattern and color and decided it was finally time to use it. That's what it's therefore after all! 

Really happy with how it came out, may have used slightly brighter ProMarkers if I were to do it again but all things considered I think it was a good inaugural card for the new set.

Project 429: A fun little rainbow challenge

I saw the rainbow challenge at Retro Rubber this week and I really wanted to play along:

I love rainbows - if colors follow the right sequence I'm over the moon and I find myself wanting to edit colors in patterns I find if they're close but not quite in the right order.

I decided to get out a set of hot air balloon stamps that I have had for about 3-4 years now, my mom gave them to me and I've always loved how perfect they are to take on color through almost any means. I heat embossed them in white then used an aqua brush and a range of Distress Inks to create the rainbow pattern.

For the background I used a cloud stencil with Broken China Distress Ink and then topped it all off with a sticker sentiment from Tim Holtz that I cut in half to fit the space. It's a really cheerful card and I'm really thrilled with out it came out, I think I may even turn it into a set as it was pretty easy!

Saturday, 22 July 2017

Project 428: A little gnome Sketch Saturday card

This week at Sketch Saturday we have great sponsor in The Digi Stamp Boutique and I was really charmed by the sets available. This little gnome set was too much fun to play with this week's sketch:

I decided to flip the sketch horizontally and on the left I repeated the toadstool multiple times and colored it using ProMarkers. On the right I colored the gnome on the flowerpot and added a grass die in dark green to give it a bit of dimension. I heat embossed the sentiment from Stampin' UP in white so it would stand out against the blue card. The little gems accents complete the sketch. 

Please play along by Friday next week! 

Monday, 17 July 2017

Project 427: Another Masculine Thank You

I mentioned a few posts ago I was working on some masculine thank you cards. I liked the sketch at Always Playing With Paper and decided to make this a bit of fun: 

I used the pickle set Claire gave me and heat embossed it in black. I used Mown Lawn Distress Ink as a watercolor to add accents to the pickles and just a tiny touch of white gel pen. I used some really fun arrow paper clips in place of the banner tags and decided a bit of hardware would be perfect. Fun and simple but I'm really happy with it.

Sunday, 16 July 2017

Project 426: Two takes on a sketch challenge

I saw the sketch at CAS(E) This Sketch and thought it would be fun to try some different ideas:

The headline is a very CAS version. I inverted the sketch and used a Tim Holtz stencil to create a sunburst at the top. For the two panels, I used Peacock Feathers Distress Ink and used alternative brush strokes to create the effect of differrent sections. I added some little sentiments from the Tim Holtz Ranger collection and I know just the friend to send it send it to.

This is an alternative version that is a bit less CAS but I do love it more. I used the color inspiration from Color Throwdown as i thought they'd be perfect for my sister's 30th birthday card.

This looks simple but was in fact a labor intensive card. I heat embossed each panel. The green panel has a houndstooth embossing folder and added numbers from a new freebie from Creative Stamping magazine. The panel on the right has dots from a Stampin' Up set and I did an ombre effect using Victorian Velvet and Picked Raspberry Distress Inks. Iadded a little pink balloon with baker string. The bottom panel has a sentiment from another magazine but I can't remember which. I added some Avery Elle stencilled hearts to make it look a bit less plain.

All in all I am really pleased with both of these and can't wait to get them off to their recipients.

Saturday, 15 July 2017

Project 425: A masculine thank you

I have a few special thank you cards to send and I needed them to be masculine. 

The combination of the sketch at Freshly Made Sketches and CAS on Sunday were perfect challenges for what I needed:

I used watercolor paper and heat embossed a tree in black. I used Mustard Seed Distress Ink to paint the background. The sentiment is an ancient one that I heat embossed as well to make it stand out. I was happy sticking with the primary color brief, it was just the inspiration I needed. 

Saturday, 8 July 2017

Project: Sketch Saturday 8 July

Hello and happy Saturday!

This week's Sketch Saturday challenge is a lot of fun

And we are sponsored by the excellent collection of digis Drawn with Character. 

I went with the PB&J image and it went so well with this layout. I coloured the image using ProMarkers and then die cut the square. I decided to keep the colors brown and purple to go with the image, so I embossed a tan piece of card using a triangle folder from Sizzix and and then die cut the background into a square. I separated the sentiment from the image so I could turn it into a tag - I made it quite a bit bigger than the sketch because I wanted it to have more prominence. I was able to use a little brown and pink bow I had in my stash, how perfect is that?

Definitely check out the challenge, be sure to get in your entry before Friday!