Sunday 31 August 2014

Catch that Umbrella

Hi and welcome to my blog.  After a weekend of failed card attempts, I finally have something that I'm not embarrassed to post!  This card uses the colors from ColourQ, the sketch from Seize the Sketch and the animal theme from Friday Mashup.

I started out watercoloring the whole card after white embossing the images.  And what a yucky vision that was :)  So I watercolored the background then Copic-colored the fox and umbrella. Much better!  Unfortunately my little fox and my sentiment have manufacturing flaws and my fox looks like his tummy has been attacked by a vicious predator!  I cleaned him up as best I could before stamping him, but there are still some problems.  The sentiment has an extra dot under the "C" in "come".  

I had to use the best matches to the ColourQ colors I had, so my fox looks more orange than Cajun Craze, sorry!

Thanks for visiting.  I've just got a new laptop and after spending several days downloading programs, I'm now trying to get used to a new, very low profile, keyboard, so any typos are due to that (promise!).

I think this card is a message to me, more than anything!  I finished my job on Friday - I'd been with the company for 32 years and in that job for 19 years, so it was a big step.  I loved my job but it was restructured so I decided that was the universe's way of pushing me out of the nest.  I'll take a couple of months then hope to find another job.  Hopefully I'll be just as happy in my next job!

Products used:

Stamps:  Up and Away (Mama Elephant)
Ink:  Versafine Onyx Black
Cardstock:  Whisper White, watercolor, Xpress-it
Accessories:  Watercolors, Copic Markers, Up and Away dies, Lil Inker Square dies


Edited to Add:  This card got a shout out at ColourQ.

Thursday 28 August 2014

Butterfly Leaves

Hi and welcome to my blog!  Today is one of my favorite days of the week - Freshly Made Sketch day!  And as a special treat for us all, this week our Guest Designer - the very talented Kim Singdahlsen - is our sketch hostess.  This is Kim's last week with us and I'm sure you'll agree her cards have been fabulous!   Check out the fantastic sketch Kim has for us:

And here's my card:

My background panel is using the bokeh technique, although it's very hard to see in the photo.  

After making my bokeh panel, I inked up the leaf stamp using several green distress inks to give a variegated effect.  The butterfly was colored with Copics and painted with Wink of Stella to give it a shimmer.  The sentiment is white-embossed onto the card base.

Thanks for visiting.  Head on over to the blog and check out the rest of the creations from the Design Team.  

Products used:

Stamps:  Papillon Potpourri (SU), Beautiful Butterflies (PTI), Leafy Accents (Clearly Besotted)
Ink:  Versamark, Memento Tuxedo Black, Hero Arts Unicorn White, Distress Inks (greens)
Cardstock:  Basic Black, Whisper White, Watercolor Paper, Xpress-it
Accessories:  Leafy Accents die, Butterfly Punch, copics, Wink of Stella, Watercolor Paints


Tuesday 26 August 2014

Cowboy Wish

Today's card uses the sketch from Retro Sketches and the cowboy theme from Sweet Stampin' Challenge.  Check out this cowboy... :)

This is the cowboy from the very old Stampin' Up set called Wild, Wild West.  Isn't he a honey, LOL!  I colored him with copics then sponged some Antique Linen Distress ink over the crisp white Xpress-it cardstock to tone it down a bit.  For all that the cowboy is pretty cute, I think my favorite part of this card is the background!

I signed up to Creative Chemistry 101 and 102 at Online Card Classes and have been enjoying learning new techniques.  For this background, I sponged various distress inks onto a piece of Whisper White, then flicked water onto the panel.  Once I'd dried that, I inked up the text stamp from Papillon with Picket Fence Distress Stain then stamped over the panel.  Here's a look at the card before I adhered Mr Cowboy.  It could be a card all by itself!

The little tag is from Simon Says Stamp and has been sponged then stamped with a couple of little stars from the same Mama Elephant as the embossed sentiment.

Thanks for visiting.

Products used:  Wild, Wild West (SU), Papillon (Tim Holtz), Make a Wish (Mama Elephant)
Ink:  Various Distress Inks, Versamark, Memento Tuxedo Black
Cardstock:  Basic Black, Whisper White, Xpress-it
Accessories:  Picket Fence Distress Stain, SSS Tag Dies, Spiral Punch (SU), Black EP, Linen Thread, Black Brad


Edited to Add:  This card was chosen as winner over at Sweet Stampin' and got a shout out at Retro Sketches.

Watercolored Wreath

Hi and welcome back for another Merry Monday challenge.  Bonnie is our challenge hostess this week and she is asking us to feature a wreath on our cards.

For my card, I decided to try a new-to-me technique called No Line Coloring (I think!) 

I stamped the wreath image onto watercolor paper using Fog ink, which is a very light color.  I then used the stamped outline as the basis for my watercoloring, using watercolor paints to create the wreath.  I used three different greens and two different red.  I struggled a bit with the bow because the Tim Holtz image I used was very detailed (good image for a first attempt at this technique - not!)

I wasn't sure whether I should post a close-up of the wreath because I had a little accident which is visible up close!  Right near the end, after I'd put some Dazzling Details on the little berries I'd painted on, I decided to run the image through the Big Shot with the Stitched Mat die.  Big mistake!  The Dazzling Details smeared and I got a splodge of red paint/dazzling details on the inside the of the wreath.  I tidied it up as best I could, but you can still see it.  Doh!

I used the sketch from the current Fusion challenge for the layout of this card.

Anyway, that's the story of this card!  Head on over to the Merry Monday blog and check out the beautiful creations from the rest of the Design Team.

Thanks for visiting.

Products Used:

Stamps:  Mini Holidays (Tim Holtz)
Ink:  Fog (SSS), Versafine Onyx Black
Cardstock:  Watercolor Paper, Old Olive, Basic Black, Jolly Holiday DSP
Accessories:  Watercolor Paints, Lil Inkers Stitched Mats Rectangles, Basic Rhinestones, Dazzling Details


Saturday 23 August 2014


Hi and welcome on this cool Saturday afternoon.  I shouldn't complain because it is still winter here and we have had some sunshine today!  I took some time between loads of laundry to make a card using sketch 304 from clean & simple and the theme word from CASology which is Java.

I started with a white linen card base, then laid the largest oval from the Lil Inkers Stitched Mats oval dies.  I masked around the outside then sponged the Splatters stencil using Frayed Burlap ink.  After removing the stencil, but before removing the die, I sponged Old Paper ink inside the oval.

The central image is an old stamp from a New Zealand company called Rubbadubbadoo and it was stamped in Versafine Onyx Black ink.

Some enamel dots (both homemade and bought) in coffee and latte tones finish off the card.

Thanks for visiting.

Products used:

Stamps:  Rubbadubbadoo
Ink:  Distress Inks in Old Paper and Frayed Burlap, Versafine Onyx Black
Cardstock:  White Linen
Accessories:  Enamel dots, Tim Holtz Splatters Stencil, Lil Inkers Stitched Mats Ovals die


Edited to Add:  This card got an Honorable Mention at CASology.

Thursday 21 August 2014

Time for Tea

It's Freshly Made Sketches day and this week, the supremely talented and hilarious Linda Callahan is our hostess.  And here's her sketch:

There are so many options for the two floral elements - they don't have to be flowers.  For my card I went with circles.

The blue circles started out white and were sponged with Tumbled Glass ink.  Once that was dry, I stamped over the top with an image from Tim Holtz's Papillon set and Picket Fence Distress Stain.  This gave a very subtle impression.  For the horizontal panel, I sponged with Scattered Straw ink.  The Distress Stain didn't show against the lemon color, so I over-stamped with Hero Arts Unicorn White ink.  You can see some of the subtle over-stamping in this close-up.

The teapot and teacup were colored with Copics and then cut out and adhered with dimensionals.  Some gray twine finished off the card.

Thanks for looking.  Be sure to check out the fabulous creations from the rest of the design team.

Products used:

Stamps:  Cup of Life (Verve), Papillon (Tim Holtz)
Ink:  Memento Tuxedo Black, Distress Ink Scattered Straw, Tumbled Glass, Dried Marigold
Cardstock:  White Linen, Whisper White, Xpress-it
Accessories:  Copics, American Crafts Twine, Picket Fence Distress Stain, Lil Inkers Stitched Mats Circles


Tuesday 19 August 2014


Welcome to another Merry Monday challenge.  This week, Sue is our challenge hostess and she has a color challenge for us - black, gold and silver.

I chose to use black and white as my main colors, with splatters of gold and silver made with Twinkling H2Os, which I've just re-discovered after not using them for many years.

I used a die cut sent to me by my Merry Monday Secret Santa last year and black-embossed it a couple of times to give it some dimension and shine.  For the white panel, I simply flicked Twinkling H2Os in gold and silver onto the panel using a paintbrush.  Once it dried, I adhered the sentiment and then finished the card with some rhinestones.  In this next photo, you can see the shimmer:

Thanks for visiting.  I hope you have time to join in the challenge.  Don't forget - Christmas isn't that far away :)

Products used:

Ink:  Versamark
Cardstock:  Basic Black, Whisper White
Accessories:  Black EP, Gold and Silver Twinkling H2Os, Basic Rhinestones


Monday 18 August 2014

Triangle Celebration

Today's card started out as my background for this week's Freshly Made Sketch challenge, but then I couldn't work out how to deal with the rectangular panel over the top, so I parked this card and created something else for FMS.  

I hate throwing away my stamped bits so this card base was sitting on the side of my desk and then along came the Addicted to CAS challenge with its code word of "Geometric".  Perfect!  So I resurrected my card, added a sentiment and some homemade enamel dots and I was done.

The card base started with the triangle image from Trifecta being white embossed then each individual triangle being colored with Prismacolor pencils.  I then went looking for a sentiment to fit the space and Shenanigans worked perfectly.  

I'm also entering this into the Seize the Birthday Anything Goes Linky Party.

Thanks for visiting.

Products used:

Stamps:  Trifecta (Mama Elephant), Shenanigans (CASual Fridays)
Ink:  Versamark, Versafine Onyx Black
Cardstock:  Whisper White
Accessories:  Prismacolor Pencils, White EP, Enamel Dots


Sunday 17 August 2014

Twinkling Baby

Hi and welcome!  Today's card is for a very special reason.  Mindy, who runs the Fab Friday challenge, had a baby recently and the rest of the Fab Friday team hijacked the planned challenge to do a baby card challenge!  Fun, right?  Mindy had a little boy, so I kept my card in the blue/green spectrum, which also meets the criteria at Just Us Girls this week.

For my card, I dug out my Twinkling H2Os which I've had for many, many years and barely used.  In fact, probably 90% of them have never been used!  To create the background, I first white embossed the image and sentiment onto watercolor paper.  I then wet the paper and dropped on the Twinkling H2Os using a paintbrush.  Look at that shimmer!

I finished the card with some homemade enamel dots which I made using Perler beads.  Unfortunately, I couldn't find any locally so had to order online and the minimum size was 6000 beads, so I've got enough for several lifetimes :)

Thanks for visiting.  Congrats to Mindy on your beautiful little boy.

Products used:

Stamps:  Celebrate Baby (SU)
Ink:  Versamark
Cardstock:  Cool Caribbean, Whisper White, Watercolor Paper
Accessories:  Twinkling H2Os, White EP, Enamel Dots


Edited to Add:  This card was a Fab Fave at Fab Friday.

Thursday 14 August 2014


Hi and welcome to what is a freezing cold Thursday here in Christchurch!  We've had a pretty mild winter so far, but today is bitterly cold and I'm glad I could spend the afternoon tucked up with a heater in my craft room!

I made a card today for two challenges:  Seize the Sketch, which has a fabulous CAS sketch by Katie, and the color challenge at The Paper Players, which has some gorgeous colors chosen by Nance.

I chose to use the adorable Mama Elephant set called Honey Bunny for my today's card.  I stamped the little bunnies on Xpress-it cardstock and colored them with Copics.  I gave them Blushing Bride tails and the flowers were colored in Hello Honey and Calypso Coral (or as close as I could get with Copics).  The sentiment was stamped with Basic Gray ink and the card base is also Basic Gray.

The bunnies are popped up on dimensionals.  A very CAS card!

Thanks for visiting!

Products used:

Stamps:  Honey Bunny (ME)
Ink:  Memento Tuxedo Black, Basic Gray
Cardstock:  Basic Gray, Whisper White, Xpress-it
Accessories:  Copic markers, enamel dots, Wink of Stella


Edited to Add:  This card got a shout-out at both Paper Players and Seize the Sketch.

Starry Birthday

Welcome back to another Freshly Made Sketch Challenge!  This week, the very talented and lovely Rita Wright is our challenge hostess.

For my card, I went with a stenciled look.

There's a bit of NBUS in this card - the Simon Says Stamp Fog ink is a beautiful, soft shade of gray and blends beautifully!  I very carefully sponged it over a new stencil after masking off an area on the card base.  I then sponged onto a panel of Whisper White before layering that onto so Fog cardstock.  

For the die-cut sentiment, I used a DTP technique with a new-to-me Archival inkpak called Viridian, which is a beautiful minty-green color.  After die-cutting I clear-embossed the sentiment for more dimension.  I layered several black die-cuts under the Viridian layer to give a raised look.  The stamped sentiment is from a Winnie & Walter set.  Big white enamel dots on a couple of die-cut stars finished off the card.

Thanks for visiting.  Be sure to check out the gorgeousness presented by the rest of the design team and I hope you find the time to give this sketch a go yourself.

Products used:

Stamps:  The Big, the Bold and the Happy (Winnie & Walter)
Ink:  Fog (SSS), Viridian (Archival), Memento Tuxedo Black
Cardstock:  Whisper White, Basic Black, Fog 
Accessories:  Lil Inkers Stitched Stars, Enamel Dots, Happy die (Clearly Besotted), Mini Numbers Collage Stencil (Crafters Workshop), clear EP


Tuesday 12 August 2014

Christmas Plaid

It's Merry Monday time again and this week Wendy has challenged us to use pinecones, greenery and plaid ribbon on our cards.

Now I don't own any plaid ribbon at all, so rather than buy some, I decided to sponge my own plaid.  It's not exactly a ribbon, but I hope it'll pass muster.

I've made a few plaid pieces in the last few days and this one was made with Distress Inks.  In hindsight, that wasn't a good idea because the distress inks stay wet for longer, so after sponging each stripe, I had to heat set before placing the mask down for the next color!  I also think the SU inks gave a much crisper and defined line between the colors.  Oh well, live and learn :)

The colors I used for the plaid were Festive Berries, Iced Spruce and Vintage Photo.  I die-cut and stamped the little pinecone from PTI's Peaceful Pinecones set.  The white panel is actually inlaid into the card base, making this a one layer card apart from the die-cut.  The reason for that is because no way on earth was I going to sponge a whole card front, so I cut out the centre panel before sponging!

Thanks for visiting.  I hope you have time to check out the rest of the design team's creations.

Products used:

Stamps:  Peaceful Pinecones, Signature Christmas (PTI)
Ink:  Early Espresso (SU), Vintage Photo, Festive Berries, Iced Spruce (Ranger)
Cardstock:  Whisper White
Accessories:  Peaceful Pinecones die, Lil Inkers Stitched Mats Rectangles, Always Artichoke and Early Espresso markers


Saturday 9 August 2014

Plaid Birthday

Here's another card featuring some of the plaid I sponged the other day.  I'm entering this in this week's CASology challenge which is "stripes".  This pattern involved sponging many, many stripes so I hope it meets the criteria.

I adhered a strip of the plaid pattern to a white linen cardbase, then stamped the sentiment using Versafine Onyx Black ink.  A few candy dots in matching colors finished off this CAS masculine card.

Thanks for visiting.

Products used:

Stamps:  The Big, the Bold and the Happy (Winnie & Walter)
Ink:  Versafine Onyx Black, Summer Starfruit, Early Espresso, Island Indigo, Tempting Turquoise
Cardstock:  White Linen, Whisper White
Accessories:  Brights and Regal Candy Dots


Friday 8 August 2014


For my second post today, I decided to follow along with a couple of the DTGD challenges at Splitcoaststampers.  These two challenges are from Bridget and Betty and here is my card:

I stenciled the card base using a Memory Box stencil and then cut a tag from vellum.  Onto that tag, I carefully adhered a leaf cut from acetate.  The felt flower and leaves came from an old Stampin' Up kit that I'd never opened.  The Congrats was made using a Dymo label maker.  The tag is popped up on dimensionals and some pretty pink baker's twine finishes it all off.

Thanks for visiting.

Products used:

Cardstock:  Whisper White, Vellum, Acetate
Accessories:  American Crafts Baker's Twine, SU felt flowers, Dymo Label Maker, Memory Box Lorelei leaves die, PTI tag die, Memory Box stencil


It's Your Day

Today's card is my first attempt at sponging my own plaid.  I first saw it in an Online Card Class a few months ago but haven't had the time to try it out.  As soon as I saw the ColourQ inspiration pic, I knew my time had come to give it a go!  I used the sketch from Verve as well as I decided it had been a while since I'd made a layered card.

Believe it or not, I did start out making a clean card but it ended up looking a bit vintage and distressed.  I stamped my balloons and colored them with Copics then because the plaid panel looked old, I decided to vintage-up my main image.  I stamped a mask for the balloons then merrily stamped and sponged around them, ending up by rubbing a bit of Gesso in the corners with my fingers.

Here's a close-up of the stamped plaid, which took quite a while as I stupidly sponged almost a half sheet of cardstock!  I sponged with Early Espresso, Island Indigo, Summer Starfruit and Tempting Turquoise and I love how I ended up with some green squares!

I'm also entering this in the following Dare to Get Dirty Challenges at Splitcoaststampers:


Thanks for visiting.

Products used:

Stamps:  Party Time (Verve), Dictionary (SU)
Ink:  Memento Tuxedo Black, Vintage Photo, Pumice Stone Distress inks, Summer Starfruit, Early Espresso, Island Indigo, Tempting Turquoise (SU), Versamark
Cardstock:  Early Espresso, Island Indigo, Whisper White, Xpress-it
Accessories:  White EP, Lil Inkers Stacked Mats Circles, Copics, Gesso, Linen Thread


Edited to Add:  This card was showcased on the Viva la Verve website plus it got a shout-out at ColourQ.

Thursday 7 August 2014

Deepest Sympathy in Gold

Hi and welcome to Freshly Made Sketch Challenge Day!  Today our hostess is Jen Mitchell.  Jen is a very talented card-maker and is also very, very funny!  Often, I'll literally laugh out loud at a comment she has left for me.  If you haven't checked out her blog, head on over.

Anyway, Jen's sketch this week is for a square card.  I kept mine rectangle because I need to post this card away and I don't know what it's like in the US, but posting square cards here in NZ is pretty expensive!

Unfortunately I have need of a sympathy card for an ex-workmate who lost his father-in-law.  I wanted to keep my card somber and masculine so came up with this.

I used a Crumb Cake card base and the Mocha Morning Specialty DSP.  I love this sentiment from Verve and it is my go-to sympathy stamp now.  I wanted to put some embellishments other than the ribbon but didn't have anything gold apart from sequins and thought that would look a bit too celebratory which is not what this card's about.  In the end, I left it pretty plain.

I'm also entering this in Heather's Dare to Get Dirty Challenge over at Splitcoaststampers. DTGD14HousesBuildofCards

If you haven't already, please check out the rest of the design team cards and welcome the very talented Kim Singdahlsen to our little group.  She is joining us as guest designer for August.

Thanks for visiting.

Products used:

Stamps:  Deepest Sympathy (Verve)
Ink:  Versamark
Cardstock:  Crumb Cake, Basic Black, Mocha Morning Specialty
Accessories:  Gold EP, Corner Rounder, Black Hemp Twine, Lil Inkers Stitched Mats Rectangles