Sunday, February 25, 2018

February 2018 Keeping Christmas Blog Hop

Hello everyone!  Thank you so much for stopping by today to check out the Keeping Christmas Blog Hop that we hold on the 25th of each month, January through November.  Part of the purpose of this is to show you that you can send all handmade greeting cards at Christmas by doing a few at a time all through the year.  We try to include tips and tricks to help you get it done.

The cards I made today, I wanted to do a clean and simple card featuring an iconic image that we naturally associate with Christmas - holly leaves. I have a stamp set that contains holly images, and I even have a few different holly dies that I could have used.  But I wanted that little pop of color that comes from stamping and I wanted an image large enough to work well with the size of my sentiment "Season's Greetings".

I chose the sentiment from the Simon Says Stamp Big Scripty Greetings Stamp Set but because I wanted to add some additional color and shading to my holly sprig, I stamped that first.  I used the Simon Says Stamp Poinsettia Stamp set from a year or two ago to create my holly leaves.  I started with 8 panels of 4.25 x 5.5 inch Stamper's Select White Cardstock.  Using my Mini MISTI , I lined up the two poinsettia leaves to look like holly and then stamped them down.

For the first set of 4 cards with the Fresh Asparagus Coordinating Cardstock, I used New Leaf and Pine Feather Inks from Papertrey Ink.  I stamped with the New Leaf first and then using a Mini Ink Blending Tool, I added some of the darker color to the base of the leaves.  This took literally a few seconds but added a lot of depth to the leaves.

For the second set of 4 cards, I stamped with Altenew's new Green Meadows family of inks using Just Green and Hunter Green for the added depth.  That Just Green is a gorgeous "Kelly" green and one that I will use a lot. Once I had the "holly" leaves stamped, I took all 8 panels and die cut them with the largest Simon Says Stamp Stitched Rectangles Die. I also cut 8 backgrounds, 4 in Gina K Designs Cherry Red and 4 in Gina K Designs Fresh Asparagus using the largest die from the WPLUS9 Gift Card Layers Die Set.  I actually really love both these Gina K colors and I have the inks, but they weren't handy, so I used what was handy.

Next I placed my sentiment how I wanted it on my card front, then I picked it up with the MISTI door and stamped each panel with Versamark and heat set it with Simon Says Stamp Antique Gold Embossing Powder.  I stamp, then sprinkle with powder, stamp, sprinkle with powder etc. and then heat set at the end of each 4 panels.  I let my heat tool warm up while I am doing the stamping and sprinkling.  If I try to do more than that, then I end up laying something where it shouldn't be and mess it up so I just do 4 at a time. You could also use black ink if that is the style you like.  If you want the shine of heat embossing you can always use clear powder.

At this point I wanted just a touch of bling so I used my Wink of Stella Clear Shimmer Pen to go over the leaves and started adding some Nuvo Drops but I could tell instantly that my three dots of Nuvo drops was going to turn into one big goopy mess, so I stopped and got my Red Satin Sequins out instead. I adhered them with Ranger Multi Medium Matte.  To get the little bit of Nuvo Drops off, I just scraped it with the tip of my tweezers and put a sequin over the top.  I did it so quickly that no one will ever know which card it was unless they are inspecting it. I'm not sure where I got these sequins with the Satin Finish, but for some reason I really like these red ones and have used them several times with holly leaves as my berries.

There are a few ways you can break this card into small pieces to make several at once.  When I started, I wasn't sure how much uninterrupted time I would have so I figured out my design first and pulled out the supplies I needed - stamps and dies.  Then I cut my cardstock down into panels in all three colors I was planning to use.  Next I scored and folded all my card bases.  Once I had that done, I set up my card front in my MISTI tool and grabbed the inks I was planning to use.

I keep the 2 brands of ink cubes that I use most in a tall 7 drawer jewelry chest just to my left on my desk that I got from US Acrylics on Amazon.  You can see it here.  This has been a fantastic find for me although it isn't currently available on Amazon.  I have tried several drawer units but none of them are nearly as well made as the US Acrylics brand.  I wanted to get another of these for a cosmetic storage solution in our bath, but they never did come back in stock so I got two of this one from US Acrylics and stacked them.  I put thick rubber feet on the bottoms so it won't scratch my vanity and it won't slide around and fall down.  I can fit almost everything in the two units (not my tall bottle of foundation or larger eye shadow palettes) and this has worked as a solution.  My husband is a lot happier because I don't have my stuff laying all over his side and mine of the vanity.  I wish I would have tried it sooner.  Anyhow....

I find it much easier to handle ink cubes with my MISTI Tool and I have mostly not gotten larger ink pads.  If I have any, it is because they came in a kit or something like that. In fact, I wasn't planning to get any brands outside of the ones I had but I have acquired a few different brands via a kit purchase.  It's definitely fun to see how other inks work so I do test them usually.  When I try to use the larger pads, I often drop them right onto my project which just frustrates me.  I don't seem to have this problem with the smaller size.

After I had my panels stamped, I did all of my die cutting at one time including the background panels.  Then I did that 2nd stage of stamping (for heat embossing) and when I finished that, I only had assembly left to do.  It took less than an hour to create these eight cards and I think any kind of card can be made by doing each little piece of it in stages as time allows.  I know it is much less stressful when the holidays come if I have a nice supply of cards to send out. It makes me think of a saying that a teacher used back in grade school, "Inch by inch, it's a cinch."

It's always great if you can take a look at your stamps and see that you can make something completely different than was intended and get a little extra mileage out of them.  In this case they are intended to be poinsettia leaves but they worked perfectly as holly leaves.  You


Thanks so much for stopping by today!  Be sure to check out all the stops along the hop to get even more ideas for building a stash of Holiday Cards.

Vicki Finger (You are here)


The supplies I've used are linked below for your convenience (Affiliate Links may be used).


Altenew Green Meadows Collection
Altenew Green Meadows Collection
Shop at:
ALT
Cuttlebug
Cuttlebug
Shop at:
SSS
GKD Cherry Red Cardstock
GKD Cherry Red Cardstock
Shop at:
GKD
GKD Fresh Asparagus Cardstock
GKD Fresh Asparagus Cardstock
Shop at:
GKD
Kokuyo Long Dot Runner Adhesive
Kokuyo Long Dot Runner Adhesive
Shop at:
SSS
PTI Perfect Match New Leaf Ink
PTI Perfect Match New Leaf Ink
Shop at:
PTI
PTI Perfect Match Pinefeather Ink
PTI Perfect Match Pinefeather Ink
Shop at:
PTI
PTI Stamper's Select White Cardstock
PTI Stamper's Select White Cardstock
Shop at:
PTI
Ranger Multi Medium Matte
Ranger Multi Medium Matte
Shop at:
SSS
SSS Antique Gold Embossing Powder
SSS Antique Gold Embossing Powder
Shop at:
SSS
SSS Big Scripty Greetings Stamp Set
SSS Big Scripty Greetings Stamp Set
Shop at:
SSS
SSS Poinsettia Stamp Set
SSS Poinsettia Stamp Set
Shop at:
SSS
SSS Stitched Rectangles Dies
SSS Stitched Rectangles Dies
Shop at:
SSS
Teflon Bone Folder
Teflon Bone Folder
Shop at:
SSS
Tim Holtz Mini Round Ink Blending Tool
Tim Holtz Mini Round Ink Blending Tool
Shop at:
SSS
Tonic 6 Inch Personal Trimmer
Tonic 6 Inch Personal Trimmer
Shop at:
SSS
Versamark Ink
Versamark Ink
Shop at:
PTI | SSS
Wagner Heat Tool
Wagner Heat Tool
Shop at:
SSS
Wink of Stella Shimmer Pen
Wink of Stella Shimmer Pen
Shop at:
SSS
WPLUS9 Gift Card Layers Designer Dies
WPLUS9 Gift Card Layers Designer Dies
Shop at:
SSS

Wednesday, February 21, 2018

Make it Monday #312 Framing Sentiments & Images

I have a quick blog post today featuring this week's technique taught by Laurie Schmidlin over at the Papertrey Ink Blog.

Because I am crazy busy this week and have two blog hops coming on Sunday, I cheated just a bit by using flowers and butterflies that were already stamped and sitting on my desk.  Not to mention the fact that I try not to throw anything away unless I messed it up.

I only had to die cut my frames using 2 dies from the Noted: Vertical A2 Scalloped Die Collection out of  Stamper's Select White Cardstock (I used three so I could stack them for a thicker element), and I made a top folding card base from the same cardstock. I adhered my frames to the card base using Foam Tape.  Everything else was already stamped and die cut.

The colors I used for the Color Pop: Butterflies were Aqua Mist Cardstock and then I stamped the details with Hawaiian Shores and Tropical Teal.  For the floral image, I used Aqua Mist, Hawaiian Shores and Tropical Teal along with Antique Gold Embossing Powder.  Along with all of these elements, I have notes penciled on the back listing the colors I used in case I have to refer to them later.  Of course, these are in code -- a code that only I can decipher, but it works for me.  For example, the code on the butterflies is HS, TT while the bloom reads AM, HS & TT.  I have to do this because I primarily use two brands of ink and I wouldn't know one from the other just by looking in some cases. There are some similar colors in the other brand.  The leaves of the blooms were water colored using New Leaf Reinker.

I was surprised to see that Make It Market Mini Kit - Color Pop: Butterflies is being retired this year as it is only a year or two old.  I enjoy using my set and I had stamped these for one of the Papertrey Anniversary Challenges that was going on last week.  I never actually got around to putting a card together and entering that challenge so I wanted to use them today. The floral image is from Altenew.


As I was assembling my card today, I got all the way to almost the end and realized I had forgotten to add my sentiment!  So then it was a scramble to find one that I could stamp inside that frame without messing anything up.  This is just about my favorite one to use for any cards I send, so I'm thankful it worked out in this case.

You can see all the details of how to frame up your sentiments at the Papertrey Ink Blog where there are sure to be lots of beautiful cards to see in the link-up. Have a great rest of the day!  The supplies I've used are linked below for your convenience (Affiliate Links may be used).

Altenew Beautiful Day
Altenew Beautiful Day
Shop at:
ALT
Altenew Beautiful Day Dies
Altenew Beautiful Day Dies
Shop at:
ALT
Cuttlebug
Cuttlebug
Shop at:
SSS
Kokuyo Long Dot Runner Adhesive
Kokuyo Long Dot Runner Adhesive
Shop at:
SSS
PTI Aqua Mist Cardstock
PTI Aqua Mist Cardstock
Shop at:
PTI
PTI Make It Market Mini Kit -  Color Pop Butterflies
PTI Make It Market Mini Kit - Color Pop Butterflies
Shop at:
PTI
PTI Noted: A2 Vertical Scalloped Die Collection
PTI Noted: A2 Vertical Scalloped Die Collection
Shop at:
PTI
PTI Perfect Match Aqua Mist Ink
PTI Perfect Match Aqua Mist Ink
Shop at:
PTI
PTI Perfect Match Hawaiian Shores
PTI Perfect Match Hawaiian Shores
Shop at:
PTI
PTI Perfect Match New Leaf Ink
PTI Perfect Match New Leaf Ink
Shop at:
PTI
PTI Perfect Match Tropical Teal Ink
PTI Perfect Match Tropical Teal Ink
Shop at:
PTI
PTI Stamper's Select White Cardstock
PTI Stamper's Select White Cardstock
Shop at:
PTI
Ranger Multi Medium Matte
Ranger Multi Medium Matte
Shop at:
SSS
Scotch 3M Foam Tape
Scotch 3M Foam Tape
Shop at:
SSS
Tsukineko Sheer Sparkle Shimmer Spritz
Tsukineko Sheer Sparkle Shimmer Spritz
Shop at:
SSS
Wink of Stella Shimmer Pen
Wink of Stella Shimmer Pen
Shop at:
SSS

Tuesday, February 20, 2018

Fusion Challenge - Spring Wreath

Hello there!  I feel like it has been quite a while since I got to participate in any of the Fusion Challenges so today's card was made just for this occasion.

I saw the wreath on this black door and I wanted to play along. I think part of the attraction (other than how pretty this door looks) is because we are having a dark colored door on the house we're building.  It's not black, but it's a very dark Navy called "Dress Blues" from Sherwin Williams.  We're headed back to Texas this weekend to see how everything is coming along so I wanted to play along while I have time.  When I saw the wreath on this door, it made me think of some paper that I have in my stash.

If you know me, then you know I love to have papers that have Gold Foil accents.  On Cyber Monday, I had made a trip to Michaels to check out one of their deals from Black Friday - $5.99 Hot Buy Cardstock Paper Pads. There were plenty to choose from and I couldn't get them all but I was most interested in any that had quite a bit of Gold in them.  I came home with a few of them.  My most impressive find that day was one from Die Cuts With a View that was all Black and Gold.  This is always a great combination for Guys in particular or if you want something very luxurious looking.  This particular pad is 24 sheets of this gorgeous black "kraft" and gold with many Art Deco Inspired patterns.  You know me -- I do love my Art Deco inspired finds so this was a no-brainer for me and I happily picked it up. 

I love all the patterns in this pad so much, but it seems like every paper pad lately has a couple of sheets in it that are pre-printed with foiled sayings that I probably wouldn't use and that don't really work for the size format that I mostly use for card making which is A2.  So I was pretty tickled yesterday when I tried to use one of those for this card and it worked out.  The card started out as a 4 x 6 panel that has an oval in the center of it.  The trick was getting it lined up correctly to be able to die cut it and use it on my card.  Thankfully, I didn't mess it up and was able to get it die cut perfectly.  I used the largest of the Simon Says Stamp Stitched Rectangle Dies which cuts at exactly 4 inches wide, so it was critical to get my paper lined up correctly in the die and secure it with a bit of low tack tape so it wouldn't move. Not only did I have to center it from side to side, but also top to bottom. If I messed up, it was no big deal, but I really wanted to find a way to use this panel since it didn't have a saying on it.  Once I had that part done the rest was fairly easy.  I also wanted to use some of my many Prima Flowers and so I grabbed a few of the pink and purple hydrangeas.  Like many of my projects, I wanted this to have some shimmer and shine, so I spritzed them with my shimmer mist and set the aside to dry while I did the rest of my die cutting. 

While I was trying to figure out how I would give it the same feeling as all those springtime tendrils. I didn't have anything that would work for that, so I decided to use a lot of leaves on my project.  The leafy branch from the Papertrey Songbirds Dies would be just the ticket and they would also be easy to snip apart and use each part individually.  So my wreath then became more of a swag.  I cut three of the branches from Gold Foiled Cardstock and then snipped each one into pieces to use as needed for my swag.  I love this branch with the stitched leaves and in fact, I still don't own the stamp set - only the dies.  It's on my wish list, but so far, I have always had something else I wanted more and so it stays on my wish list.  


For the sentiment, I die cut the "hello" 3 times from True Black Cardstock and glued them one on top of the other and then cut the top layer from the same gold foiled cardstock.  I put these together with Ranger Multi Medium Matte to have a thicker embellishment for my sentiment.  The dies is from the Hello Stamp and Cut by Hero Arts and is a favorite for its style and size.  Not to mention the Stamp and Cuts are around $15.00 for the stamps and the die.  It's a smaller stamp set, but that's okay with me. 

I matted the black and gold panel to a gold foiled panel cut with the WPLUS9 Gift Card Layers Die which cuts a full 4.25 x 5.5 inch stitched rectangle panel.  I love the very finished edge of my panels when I use dies and no matter how good my paper trimmer is, I never feel like it cuts as nicely as my dies.  

This card came together pretty quickly since I was able to use the gold foiled paper.  Prima flowers can be difficult to layer so I used some Alene's Jewel it because for whatever reason it dries faster.  Glue dots don't work and Ranger Multi Medium matte isn't very satisfactory either.  It seems as though the Multi Medium stays wetter longer on the Mulberry Paper. There are probably other adhesives that would work well but I have the Alene's already in one of the containers on my desk.

There's no special techniques her unless you count no stamping as a technique.  Lately, I've had a few challenge to make a card with so stamping on it.  In fact, there's one of those over at AAA Cards Challenge this week but they want CAS (Clean & Simple) Style cards and this one definitely does not qualify.  I challenge you to use something pre-printed and make a card out of it.  It should be easy but it's harder than you think sometimes.

The supplies I've used are linked below for your convenience (Affiliate Links may be used).



Hero Arts Hello Stamp & Cut
Hero Arts Hello Stamp & Cut
Shop at:
SSS
Kokuyo Long Dot Runner Adhesive
Kokuyo Long Dot Runner Adhesive
Shop at:
SSS
PTI Songbirds Dies
PTI Songbirds Dies
Shop at:
PTI
PTI Stamper's Select White Cardstock
PTI Stamper's Select White Cardstock
Shop at:
PTI
PTI True Black Cardstock
PTI True Black Cardstock
Shop at:
PTI
Teflon Bone Folder
Teflon Bone Folder
Shop at:
SSS
Tsukineko Sheer Sparkle Shimmer Spritz
Tsukineko Sheer Sparkle Shimmer Spritz
Shop at:
SSS
WPLUS9 Gift Card Layers Designer Dies
WPLUS9 Gift Card Layers Designer Dies
Shop at:
SSS