Monday, 30 May 2011

Manly Birthday Card

I'm having so much fun with the A La Card Monkey challenges!  I was even named as a runner-up in last week's challenge!!!!!!  Needless to say I was very excited to be chosen amongst a field of great looking cards.  AND that means I get to be a GUEST DESIGNER for next week's challenge!  So cool!  Be sure to check out A La Card Monkey on Friday to see the challenge and back here to see the details.

This week's challenge was just what the doctor ordered, so to speak.  My brother-in-law's birthday is on Wednesday and I needed to create a card for him.  The challenge at A La Card Monkey this week is to create a "Man Card"!  Perfect!  Here's the sketch:

And here's what I came up with:

Manly Birthday Card

I pulled out the "Sentimental Journey" stamp set from last year's Summer Mini Catalogue along with the matching DSP.  It's one of the only "manly" sets I have and suits my brother-in-law much better than this year's "Best Dad Ever" set.   The card base is Pumpkin Pie card stock and the colours I chose to use to compliment that are Night of Navy and Bashful Blue.

To create the image in the middle I first inked up by big Clear Block (just the block with no stamp on it) with Bashful Blue ink and stamped on a piece of Whisper White card stock.  I was really pleased with the result.  It almost looks like denim.  To get the "shadowing" look for the "Detour" stamp, I inked it in Night of Navy classic ink and then "stamped off" three times before stamping on the card stock.  The car is stamped in Night of Navy as well, cut out and mounted with Stampin' Dimensionals.

I then distressed the edges of the Whisper White and Night of Navy matting with my paper snips.   I did the same thing to the piece of Bashful Blue textured card stock along the bottom.  Here's a closer look at it:

Distressed edges and denim look

The "medallion" was really fun to create and actually came about a little by accident.  I was sharpening my "Bold Blossom" triple layer punch with a pop can (Orange Fanta to be exact) and when I saw the result I thought, "Those colours would go perfectly with my 'Man Card'", and they do:

Orange Fanta pop can medallion.

I used the third setting on the punch to get the background of the medallion and the first setting to get the middle part (the silvery layer).  The compass is stamped in Pumpkin Pie ink and punched out using a 1" circle punch.  I mounted everything using "Sticky Strip" to ensure that it would adhere properly.  Be careful when working with aluminum cans though....they sometimes "bite"!

Finally, the "Happy Birthday" sentiment comes from the "Best Dad Ever" stamp set from the current Summer Mini Catalogue.  I love this set because the sentiments have great fonts and could be used in many situations.  It is stamped in Night of Navy and the edges are sponged with the same ink.  The edges are also slightly distressed (although it's hard to see it here).

I really hope he likes it as much as I do (I know his wife will!).  I almost didn't want to send it today because I like it so much!!   Happy Birthday Pete!

Thursday, 26 May 2011

Variations on a Theme

Wow!  So many posts this week!  I'm on a roll, but my housework is definitely suffering!!!  I was inspired again this week by A la Card Monkey's challenge.  I'm working on ideas for the "Girls Night Out at Cafe M" on June 17th.  I wanted to create something that's relatively simple and that uses some colours from the "Getting Started" collection.  I decided to use Marina Mist, Old Olive and Real Red as my colour palette and here are some of the ideas I came up with:

Fabulous Florets again!
This is the one that I like the best and the one that I entered in the Monkey Challenge this week.  I couldn't resist using my "Fabulous Florets" stamp set again and I paired it with the birthday sentiment from "Sincere Salutations".    Rather than stamping an image on the card base I decided to try sponging Marina Mist ink on it.  I really liked the effect that it has in creating a bit of a shadow on the page.  I ran the Real Red strip through the Big Shot using the "Flower Garden" embossing folder and decided to use the negative side rather than the positive side this time.
The rest of the card is pretty straightforward.  The sentiment is punched using the Decorative Label punch (my favourite punch!) and the edges are sponged with Marina Mist ink.  The two "fabulous florets" are hand cut and adhered using Stampin' Dimensionals.

Upsy Daisy Birthday Card
 This was my second attempt at the design and using my chosen colour palette.  I really struggled with the placement of images and I'm still not convinced with this one.  I love using the "Upsy Daisy" stamp set for workshops with beginners because with shadow stamping one can create a really pretty effect that is super simple!  The Real Red strip on this one was dry embossed using the "Perfect Polka Dots" embossing folder with the Big Shot.  The sentiment comes from the "Upsy Daisy" stamp set, again, I love this set because it is so versatile for beginners and experienced stampers and comes with three sentiments.

Bold Blossom Thank You
Finally, this was my first attempt at the design.  I used the "Bold Blossom" set from the Summer Mini catalogue for this one even though the challenge was to create a birthday card.  Again, the Real Red strip is dry embossed using the "Perfect Polka Dots" embossing folder.  This is a super simple card.

I'm still not decided on which one I'll use for the Girls Night Out'll just have to come out and see : )

Faux Matte card

I recently started following a great blog called "Stamp Girl".  Cheryl provides detailed instructions and great photos of various techniques.  Recently she posted about layering images and "overstamping".  I loved the idea so much that I decided to give it a shot with my "Just Believe" stamp set and newly arrived In-Colours (yes, I know I'm arriving a little late to the game for In-Colours...they are fabulous by the way).

Here's what I came up with:

Layered images create a softer effect
 I started by inking up my large clear block (Block E) with Blushing Bride ink.  Then I stamped onto the right side of the Blushing Bride card stock base.  After re-inking the block I stamped onto a piece of Whisper White card stock to create a "faux matte".   Using my Pear Pizazz and Poppy Parade Stampin' Write markers I then coloured the flower image from the "Just Believe" stamp set.   To create a distressed look I misted the edges of the card stock with some water and used the edge of my paper snips along the edges.   I then mounted it on a piece of Pear Pizazz DSP (from the Hostess Benefits pack).

I've been wanting to use the little circle image from "Just Believe" for a while and I've also wanted to try this embossing technique as well.  After stamping the image in VersaMark on Whisper White card stock, I embossed it using white embossing powder.  Then I took a sponge, inked it with Poppy Parade and sponged over the embossed images...the places that aren't embossed take the ink.  Be sure to wipe your image with a tissue afterwards to make the white "pop" again.

I used my Scallop Circle punch to punch out a backing in Pear Pizazz.  Again, to distress the edges I misted them with water and "worked" the paper to curl and wear the paper.

I stamped my sentiment in Poppy Parade and then punched it out using my Modern Label punch.  The edges are sponged using Poppy Parade as well.

Thanks to Cheryl for the great ideas and tips....check out her blog at .

Wednesday, 25 May 2011

Girls' Night Out at Cafe M

I'm SO excited for this event at Cafe M at TheMUSEUM in downtown Kitchener!  Recently TheMUSEUM renovated their cafe and have renamed it Cafe M.  Along with this they are launching a series of evening events at Cafe M and one of them is called "Girls Night Out" and is an evening of card making with me!  Bring your friends and enjoy a night out socializing and being creative.

Here are the details: 
When: Friday, June 17th
Time: 7:00pm (but doors open at 6:30pm)\
Where: Cafe M at theMUSEUM on King St. in Kitchener
Cost: $10 for 2 projects

Space is limited for this event so please RSVP to Melissa soon!!

Tuesday, 24 May 2011

Thank You card for Stampin 411 Challenge

It seems to be becoming my trend to post new material on Tuesday evenings.  Maybe that's because my weekends of late have been so busy and I've been taking Monday's to recover.  In any case, I have lots of new cards and ideas and expect more than one post this week!

What a wonderful Victoria Day long weekend we just had!  I love long weekends more day with my husband home (which is good in itself) but he often takes over the care of our son which leaves me more time to get things done around the house.  This weekend was no exception.  After spending a fabulous day up in Durham with my sister-in-law and her husband celebrating my son's 2nd birthday, I took Sunday and Monday to get some yard work done.  The rain held off on Monday (finally) and I was able to get my tomatoes, onions and some herbs planted in my newly created vegetable garden.  We'll see how they do....if the deer eating the tulips right next to the house is any indication of how the wildlife view my gardens they may not be long for this world : )

I finally got down to some stamping tonight.  I'm needing to create Thank You cards for all the wonderful gifts my son received for his birthday as well as some customer Thank You's.  I decided to use the Stampin' 411 Saturday Sketch Challenge as my inspiration for this card:

Fox and Friends Thank You card
 I had fun using the "Fox and Friends" stamp set (thanks to my sister-in-law for letting me borrow it!) for this card along with the Play Date DSP.  I love the combination of colours that the Play Date DSP uses and I thought it was perfect to use for these thank you cards.  The base of the card is So Saffron card stock.  I then took the Play Date DSP and cut two pieces; one to 4" x 3" and the other to 4" x 2 1/4".  The ribbon to hide the seam between the two pieces of DSP is Old Olive 1/4" grosgrain ribbon.  The matting for the images is a piece of 3" x 3" Chocolate Chip card stock. It is backed with a 3" x 3" piece of Tempting Turquoise.  I think maybe next time I would switch the position of these two squares.  The Tempting Turquoise doesn't seem to provide enough contrast to the So Saffron background. 

I love the images of the animals in the "Fox and Friends" stamp set and I had fun stamping them onto 1 1/4" squares in Tempting Turquoise, So Saffron, Chocolate Chip and Old Olive inks.

Another use for the Decorative Label punch!

Finally, the "Thank You" sentiment comes from the "Family Phrases" collection of stamps.  After stamping the image in Tempting Turquoise ink I used the Decorative Label punch in a "new" way.  Taking the narrower end of the punch and putting it at the top of sentiment rather than on the side and then punching again at the bottom, again with the narrow end to create this smaller "label".  I did the same thing, only leaving a little wider edge for the Chocolate Chip mounting.  Thanks to Julie B at Julie B's Stampin' Space for the idea...check out her blog to see photos of how to do this or come to my next Make and Take on June 7th : )

Tuesday, 17 May 2011

Happy Birthday!

It's been longer between posts than I had anticipated but the weather was so gorgeous last week I had to be outside!   This weekend was spent in London at the "in-laws".  I ran a workshop for my cousin and I had a great time meeting her friends and family!  It was a nice way spend a cold and rainy Sunday afternoon that's for sure!!!

It's my husband's birthday today, so I had to create something!  I can't really get away with not giving him a card anymore since it is now my livelihood : )  So I put together a card and a little scrapbook page that he can frame and put in his office.

"I got the ties" was my husband's reaction!
I'm really enjoying creating with the "Best Dad Ever" ties and sentiments.  While they don't appear to be too versatile at first glance, the ties lend themselves to many different variations of colour.  I decided to go with colours from SU's Brights Collection today...and if you feel like you've seen this already, you have, sort of.  I'm trying to use up extra kits from my May Make and Take!!  This is the same template as the Bold Blossoms card that I posted on April 17th.
The base of the card is in Pacific Point cardstock that has been run through the Big Shot machine using the "Perfect Polka Dots" embossing folder.  The mattes are Real Red and Daffodil Delight (cut to 1/8" smaller than the Real Red).  I used Pacific Point, Real Red, Daffodil Delight, So Saffron and Bashful Blue Stampin' Write markers to colour the ties.

Ribbon detail
   Using the bigger hole punch on my Crop-a-Dile I punched a hole through the white, yellow and red cardstock to thread this 1" Real Red ribbon through.  This is retired SU ribbon (sorry).  I tied it using Linen Thread and then cut the edges to create the fish tail look.  Although I don't have it posted here, I used a sentiment from the "Messages to Mom" stamp set on the inside.  It's so versatile!

Fun with "Play Date" DSP
 Last year for his birthday I gave my husband a framed picture of him and our son.  I decided to step it up this year and create a little 8 1/2" x 8 1/2" scrapbook page.  I had created a template similar to this for a workshop I did for a friend.  I used Crumb Cake cardstock for the base.  The larger picture (4 x 6) is matted using Chocolate Chip cardstock cut to 4 1/2 x 6 1/2".  I used Play Date DSP to create the border along the bottom and to matte a smaller picture (cut to 3' x 3").  The little journalling square is 2 3/4" x 2 3/4" of Whisper White cardstock with some Brights brads to add some texture.  This is matted using Tempting Turquoise card stock (I couldn't wait to use this colour to compliment my son's swimsuit that he wore on our March Break vacation to Hilton Head Island, SC!!)

A cool border using the Decorative Label Punch
To create the border along the bottom of the page I punched out 2-3 pieces of Tempting Turquoise cardstock using my Decorative Label Punch.  I cut them in half and then adhered them to the Play Date DSP.

Stayed tuned for more using the Play Date DSP and more ideas that I will using for my June Make and Take on June 7th!

Tuesday, 10 May 2011

Another Father's Day card

Here is the second Father's Day card that I came up with last night.  I really like the colour combination of Not Quite Navy, Baja Breeze, Chocolate Chip and Old Olive with a little bit of Crumb Cake and Whisper White thrown in.  Don't Stampin' Up colour names just make you want to eat or get outside?  I love them!

Father's Day tie card
This card suits my father because he has worn a tie to work every day for the past 30+ years!  I ran the piece of Chocolate Chip cardstock through the Big Shot using the Perfect Polka Dots embossing folder to add a bit more texture to this card.  The patterned paper comes from the Nursery Suite DSP package.

There will be many more cards to come using the "Best Dad Ever" set from the Summer Mini, I promise.  In the next 2 months bit my husband, father, 2 brothers, father-in-law and uncle all have birthdays!  Stayed tuned!

Monday, 9 May 2011

Beautiful Days

Wow!  What a week it has been.  It's been so nice to see the sun again and also to see loved ones again.  My youngest brother and sister-in-law, who have been teaching in South Korea for the past 14 months, came to visit last Thursday evening.  They are in Canada for 2 short weeks and we were able to spend 2 1/2 days with them here in Kitchener and also in Midland for the Mother's Day weekend.  I am so thankful that they made room in their busy schedule to spend so much time with us. 

My son took to his Uncle and Auntie immediately and was soon busy showing off his vocabulary and love of chasing bubbles.  The fun continued on Saturday in Midland when my other brother and his wife also joined us at my parents' house.  This was quite an event for my family.  We don't think we've all been in the same room with each other since our grandfather's funeral at Christmas 2009!  We had a great time playing basketball, just like when we were kids, sitting around talking politics and eating great food.  Thanks Mom!

So, in the busyness of catching up with family, I, obviously, put cards on the back burner.  It was back to business tonight though because my cousin's workshop is coming up quickly on Sunday and I wanted to put together a couple of ideas for it.  With Mother's Day now past, I have turned my focus to Father's Day cards.  I really like the new "Best Dad Ever" set from the Summer Mini, but my uncle(in-law) and father(in-law), who will be the recipients of these cards, are far from being shirt and tie men.  Thanks to my faithful Make and Take friends and their great ideas, I have an alternative to the shirt and tie.

Hawaiian Shirt Father's Day Card
 As an homage to my uncle(in-law)'s wedding a few years ago, for which the men were asked to wear Hawaiian shirts, I created this fun Father's Day card.  It's a great way to use up your scraps of flowered paper (I've used the Beyond the Garden DSP here)!  The base of this card is Wild Wasabi and the shirts and other papers are mounted onto a piece of 3 3/4" x 5" Whisper White cardstock.   I ran the piece of Pacific Point paper through the Big Shot using the "Perfect Polka Dots" embossing folder and then wrapped a bit of linen thread around it.  The little strips are just a little less than 1/4" in Melon Mambo and Early Espresso.

It certainly doesn't fit the mold of "masculine" colours but I like the whimsy that the flowered paper creates and I think that my cousin will have a lot of fun making this and will be proud to give it to her father.

The second card that we'll be doing uses the "Hello Again" stamp set from the 2010-2011 IB&C.  I choose to keep this card in the Brights family because the flowers are finally starting to bloom here in southern Ontario and the bright colours along with long needed sunshine are creating beautiful scenes.
Hello Again card
I used Daffodil Delight as the base of this card (the daffodils are gorgeous again this year) and used the Retro Mix Stampin' wheel in Daffodil Delight ink along the left edge of the card.  The matte is Pacific Point and Real Red and the grass is done in Old Olive.  I used a variety of Stampin' Write markers from the Brights family to colour the flowers and the butterfly.  Finally, the "hello" is stamped in Tangerine Tango ink onto the same coloured paper and then punched out using the 1" circle punch. 

I hope that these cards brighten your day and I'm looking forward to making them on Sunday with my cousin and her guests.  I've got more cards to post tomorrow, so please come back and visit : )

Sunday, 1 May 2011

Mother's Day Make and Take

Wow!  It's hard to believe that May has arrived, mainly because the weather has been so crummy lately.  We finally had a sunny day yesterday and I felt a sense of urgency to some yard work while I had a's raining again today (sigh).

So, having spent the entire day outside yesterday and most of Friday glued to the television watching the Royal wedding (wasn't it a fabulous service?!!) I have not spent much time creating.  When I sat down this afternoon to work out the details of my final card for Tuesday's Make and Take I had a really hard time getting started.  In the end, this is what I came up with. 

Mother's Day card
 This is an "easel" card and measures 4 1/4" x 4 1/4" when finished.  While I wanted to have something a little more "fancy", in the end I decided to keep it simple.  I used the "Message for Mom" stamp set for both the front of the card and the inside sentiment (not shown here).  It's a great set because the sentiments can be used for a variety of occasions and people, not just for Mom on Mother's Day.  The colour combination is one that I used for some of my Christmas cards that I really like; Perfect Plum, Bashful Blue and Whisper White.  I ran the card stock through the Big Shot using the "Beautiful Wings" embosslit to create the different butterflies.   All the butterflies got a bit of "bling"; the little ones are decorated with rhinestones and on the big one I painted the "design" with platinum shimmer paint.

For instructions on how to create the easel card go to 

Check out "Upcoming Classes" for more information about Tuesday's class and future classes.

Sale-a-bration 2018

Happy New Year!  As 2018 begins, so does Stampin' Up's annual "Sale-a-bration" extravaganza.  One of my favourite freebies...