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Friday, May 29, 2020

Whimsical Christmas cards...

As you can see, I've been busy making Christmas cards. In fact, I made at least 5 of each of these.

For each card, I started with a pre-made card base that had a striped border all the way around the card front. After Christmas last year, I bought two packs, each containing 25 of the card blanks and 25 envelopes for 70% off at Michaels.

My tree was cut from green glitter paper. The tree die cut the garland openings, so I used double-sided tape on the back side to adhere some white cardstock and then sprinkled some white glitter into the garland openings.

The die also cut some small circular openings where I placed my flat-backed gems.

The tree and the star were popped up on foam tape.

On the inside I stamped a sentiment and also a tree border at the bottom. I colored in the white parts of the trees with a glitter pen.

This moose is pretty cute, isn't he? For this card, I took a green rectangle and cut my oval aperture, then dry-embossed it with a snowflake frame EF and rubbed a little white chalk over the embossed snowflakes. I die-cut my moose and assembled him so that he was peeking out of my aperture.

I added a wide piece of double-sided tape to the backside of my moose and aperture before gluing down my entire rectangle. Once that was done, I sprinkled white glitter over the open parts of the aperture and burnished it in with my finger. You can just see the sparkle if you look closely.

The sentiment dies came with the moose dies.

For this card, I matted my DSP with red and then added my die-cut Santa. I've inked the edges of the fur on his hat with Tea Dye Distress ink and used a couple of gray alcohol markers to add some shadow to his beard and mustache. His eyes and the berries on the holly were made with Nuvo Drops.

To create my sentiment, I used some alphabet dies to cut out my H's and O's, then glued them together. Once that was done, I simply adhered them to my card.

This was my favorite card of the bunch. I think I actually made 11 or 12 of these.  I die-cut the oval wreath from my green rectangle, backed it with 4" wide double-sided tape and adhered it to my card. I sprinkled some white glitter into the wreath cut-outs and burnished it in with my finger.

Then I die-cut and assembled my gnome and popped him up on foam tape. The sentiment is also popped up on foam tape.

For this inside sentiment I used two different stamps and two different inks.

On a more serious note, I'm sure you've all heard of the rioting that has been happening in Minneapolis. We are so saddened and a bit frightened by it all. I live just 14 blocks from where George Floyd was killed and the rioting and fires began. In fact the morning after the first fires we found pieces of burned debris that had blown into our yard the night before. I pray this is all resolved soon and justice is served. Please keep us in your thoughts.

Thanks so much for stopping by, and remember to laugh--a little or a lot--every day.

Tuesday, May 26, 2020

Framed yellow rose...

I decided to try my hand, once again, at using water color pencils to color another rose image. I first stamped the image with very light ink onto water color paper, and then proceeded to color it, using the pencils and my water brush.

After my coloring was done, I fussy-cut some of the leaves and the bud so they could extend outside the frame. This particular frame was pre-made and given to me along with a whole stack of similar frames. I've had them in my stash for a while, so it felt good to use at least one of them!

I still need lots of practice using water color pencils, but it was fun to give it a go.

As a final touch I added some clear Nuvo drops.

I matted the inside panel and stamped a birthday verse.

A few minutes ago, while I was typing this, we had a tornado warning on TV. It was for three or four counties near us. In fact, a couple of the counties border ours. Because tornadoes are usually short-lived and don't travel terribly far once they hit the ground, I don't think we have to worry.  We'll keep our eye on the weather, though! It seems awfully early in the season for tornadoes. I guess it might be a long summer.

Thanks so much for stopping by, and remember to laugh--a little or a lot--every day.

Friday, May 22, 2020

The Twofer Blog is in the flower business...

I finished up a couple of cards today so that I could enter them into the Twofer Challenge Blog. This month's theme is "flowers," and what's more fun than adding flowers to our cards?


There are just two days for you to enter this fun challenge, as well. I especially love it because it forces me to make two cards at one time, using the same image.

The first thing I did in creating these two cards was to stamp and die-cut a slew of flowers. These flowers call for five layers of stamping, so instead of doing one at a time, I cut 4" X 4" pieces of white cardstock so I could create four flowers on each piece.

I set my cardstock in the corner of my stamp positioner and then stamped the first layer in one corner, gave my cardstock one turn, stamped another, etc., until I had stamped that layer in all four corners. Then I went on to my next layer. Using this method, I created three cardstock squares with four same-colored flowers on each one and one last square with eight leaves on it.

The background was made using my NBUS brick wall stencil that I had created with my Silhouette at least a year ago! Why did I let it sit there unused for so long?  I simply placed it over my front panel and used a blending brush to add some gray ink. Since I've used this NBUS stencil, I'm also linking this card to the current NBUS Challenge Blog.

My "hello" was cut from some black foam board (purchased at Dollar Tree) and the sentiment was stamped directly onto the background with Versafine ink.

My cluster of flowers was glued in place with the pink one popped up on foam tape.

I scattered a few tiny pink pearls for some added dimension.

My second card is a slim line card. It's only 3 1/2" wide by 8" long. I'm not sure if those are the usual dimensions of the slim line cards that I'm seeing all over the web. I just happened to have this card blank in my stash--no idea why--so I decided to use it.

I wasn't quite sure what to do with it, but since it was made from some nice, heavy cardstock, I simply added some scored lines for a little somethin'-somethin' in the background.

My sentiment is die-cut out of some heavy, dark gray cardstock. I see that my Y is a little wonky, so I'll have to fix that before I send this out.

I glued my leaves directly to the card base (which actually does match the pink in my flower IRL), but popped my flower up on a couple of foam squares.

Both cards have a blank, white panel inside so that I can use them to write a personal note.

Here are a few photos of real flowers currently gracing my yard:

Thanks so much for stopping by, and remember to laugh--a little or a lot--every day.

Tuesday, May 19, 2020

Greatest hits birthday...

You know those masculine cards most of us find difficult to make? Well I got this "Greatest Hits" stamp and die set specifically to make some masculine cards. Here's one of the cards I came up with:

I made the album cover myself (it wasn't part of the die set), inked around its edges and stamped it with the "Greatest Hits" sentiment from the stamp set.  The semi-circle divot at the top of the album cover was done with a small circle punch.

I used the volume equalizer stamp from the set to create a background behind my album.

My LPs were die-cut from some heavy, glossy cardstock. I love how they turned out. The little centers are stamped and cut out separately and then glued to the record.

To finish off the front of my card, I stamped a few scattered notes.

On the inside I stamped one of the greetings included in the stamp set and a few more notes on a stamp-edge rectangle.

This card was really fun to make and reminds me of the days we all played LPs and 45s on our record players.

When I was 12 or 13, I saved some babysitting money to buy a 45 record which had Elvis' hit song "Return to Sender" on its A side. I honestly don't remember what was on the B side. I took my prized record up to city hall one night where they let us roller skate to music from a record player. Everyone brought their personal records to play. At the end of the evening I went to pick up my Elvis record and IT WAS GONE! Someone else had really liked it, too, I guess, and had decided to take it home with them before I had a chance to pick it up. I never saw that record again, but I still know the words to that song.

Thanks so much for stopping by, and remember to laugh--a little or a lot--every day.

Friday, May 15, 2020

My first iris shutter card...

I purchased a Lori Whitlock iris shutter card design from the Silhouette Design Store. I have cut out all the parts for two cards and have put together one of them for my granddaughter's 17th birthday.

The original design used only a few pieces of confetti, but I decided to cut out extras of each shape and add them to my card.

Rather than writing a personal note and signing the back, I adhered the entire shutter mechanism to a 5" X 7" card base, which made the card sturdier and easier to operate.

Here's a short video showing you how it works:

I used my computer to print a sentiment on the inside of my card.

Today was such a beautiful day here in Minnesota. With the sun shining in a brilliant blue sky and the temperature reaching into the 70s, what do you think I was doing? Making Christmas cards! I have now made 60 Christmas cards, so I only need about 25 more of them. This is definitely the earliest I have had that many ready for the holidays.

I also sewed a couple of face masks today--one for my aunt and one for my cousin--and popped them in the mail. I was glad my cousin let me know they needed them, as I have plenty of fabric and other sewing supplies that I am happy to share.

Thanks so much for stopping by, and remember to laugh--a little or a lot--every day.

Tuesday, May 12, 2020

Quilting fun...

After finishing up my Easter cards, I had some scraps laying on my table that I wanted to use up. Seeing so many of the quilt-themed cards online, I decided to make one myself.

I began by using a square punch to punch squares from several patterns of CS. Then I adhered the squares to a piece of copy paper and added my little baker's twine ties so that it looked like a tied quilt. I thought those little ties added a fun touch.

Finally, I embossed my rectangle using a 3-D EF, cut it to size and adhered it to a card base. I think this base was 4 1/2" X 6".

My sentiment was computer-generated and put on a pre-made fancy label that I had in my stash. A few Nuvo Drops finished my card. I left the inside blank so that I have a place to write some personal news and good wishes to a family member or friend.

Speaking of good wishes, I send my very best to all of you who are staying home and doing your best to slow and/or stop the spread of the coronavirus. It is lonely and boring, I know, but I'm hoping that our efforts together will keep later surges of the illness at bay. The 1918-19 flu pandemic saw many more deaths in its second surge than it did in the first. In fact, it was so deadly that in one year there were 675,000 deaths in this country alone and it dropped the U.S. life expectancy by 12 years! I pray that doesn't happen this time around. So let's all wear our masks, wash our hands and follow the CDC guidelines for staying alive and well.

Thanks so much for stopping by, and remember to laugh--even if it's only for a moment--every day.

Friday, May 8, 2020

Sympathy in pink and white...

Sadly, my sister's MIL passed away last month from health issues unrelated to COVID-19. I know she will be missed, and I wish there was more I could have done besides sending a card. As I'm sure you all know, funerals are private affairs these days. I wasn't even able to attend my Uncle's funeral at the end of March.

Today's card is one that I sent to my sister and her family. I cut my pink panel and heat embossed the sentiment in the lower right-hand corner. Then, on a white panel, I cut a scalloped corner at the bottom and an oval aperture at the top before dry-embossing it with the Cuttlebug Swiss Dots EF.

With my lily-of-the-valley die, I cut several stalks and leaves from white cardstock and colored them with Promarkers. The camera washed out my green some, but I did try to keep it a pale green so as not to contrast too much with my pale pink.

Here's a better look at the heat embossed sentiment at the bottom of the card front.

I tried something new on the inside. I heat-embossed my sentiment on another pink panel. Then I created a frame, which I dry-embossed with the Swiss Dots EF, and popped it up on  some thin foam tape for a little added dimension.

The card still closed fine, and this frame coordinated with the front of the card and added a special touch to the inside.

On a lighter note, I wanted to share a recent achievement of mine: I managed to cut my entire head of hair by myself. I did have my DH straighten out the nape a bit, but other than that I personally wielded that scissors like a light saber, cutting close to an inch off all over. It doesn't seem to look tooooooo bad. At least I haven't noticed anyone pointing at my head and laughing when I've been out and about. Of course, they could have been laughing behind their face masks.

Thanks so much for stopping by, and remember to laugh--a little or a lot--every day.

Tuesday, May 5, 2020

Let's Craft and Create Challenge #159: Ribbons/Lace/Twine...

As we all know, trends come and go in paper crafting. When I first started making cards more than a decade ago, ribbons were often used to embellish my card fronts. I even remember seeing online photos of the vast ribbon collections of my fellow crafters. I had a box full of ribbon, but my assortment paled in comparison to their special ribbon display shelves and containers filled with every color of ribbon under heaven.

I haven't used much ribbon in recent years, so I was glad when this challenge came along on the Let's Craft and Create challenge blog.  It encouraged me to look into my ribbon box once again and select something to use on a card.

After cutting my pink floral cardstock panel, I used a craft knife to carefully make regular 1/2" slits in three rows, staggering them so that I could thread my ribbon through them in a regular pattern. This took a little time, so I think I'll use my Silhouette Cameo to design this panel when I do this again. That way, I can cut two at once for some quick cards.

I chose three 1/2" ribbons and three 1/8" ribbons from my box. It was easy to weave the 1/2" ribbons through the slits I had made and then glue on my little bows.

I stamped my sentiment with blue ink, then cut it out with a die and popped it up on foam tape. And I couldn't resist adding some sequins for a little sparkle.

For the inside of my card, I use some more of the pink floral CS as a mat and left my white panel blank. I will use this card to send a hand-written note of encouragement to a family member or friend.

Now it's your turn to join in the fun! Dig out those ribbons, lace or twine and get creative. You can use any, or all three, or enter the challenge by choosing the "anything goes" option. As usual, there is a prize to make this challenge even more interesting.

Thanks so much for stopping by, and remember to laugh--a little or a lot--every day.