Thursday, October 30, 2014

Merry Monday: Christmas Peace

I have a great new snowflake background die so definitely wanted to play along with the current challenge at Merry Monday: snowflakes, dry embossing and neutrals.

I don't buy many cover plates or background dies.  I like them, but every time that I put them in a cart, I realize how much they cost and how much else that I could buy instead!  However, I am such a big fan of snowflakes, I figured that I could not go wrong with this Reverse Snowflake Panel by Frantic Stamper.

Snowflake Peace

I kept this one quite simple, but one day I am going to go crazy and do a giant shaker box with snowflake sequins and snow glitter!!  The "Peace" die is by Impression Obsession - they also carry it at Frantic Stamper if you are over there looking for the snowflake die.    Frantic Stamper has their own "peace" die but it's just enough smaller that on my particular card, I was afraid it would get lost.

I have another card that's been quite lonely on my desk as I have not been getting it added to my blog!  I did it for a Merry Monday challenge a number of weeks ago, but have you ever had a card take on a life of its own?  Wouldn't this stamp set be better?  A different color would be nice.  What about this sentiment? By the time that I got done, I took a look at the challenge graphic and realized that my card had ended up far away from the theme, so I never posted it.

Christmas Blessings

I am in love with the look of just a hint of embossing paste.  This is a wonderful stencil for Christmas cards - it's Jenni Bowlin's Mini North Star.  I had ordered it and then realized that my local Hobby Lobby had it.  I only added embossing paste in the corner, then immediately sprinkled with a fine glitter.

Christmas Blessings close

Snowflake Peace
  • Stamps: none
  • Paper: Simon Says Fog and Smoke
  • Ink: none
  • Accessories: Frantic Stamper Reverse Snowflake Panel, Impression Obsession Peace die, Lifestyle Crafts embossing folder, Papertrey Ink button, Iridescent Crochet thread, Pretty Pink Posh 8mm and 6mm Sparkling Clear Sequins
Christmas Blessings
  • Stamps: Papertrey Ink Peace Be Still, Wet Paint Holiday
  • Paper: Papertrey Ink Plum Pudding
  • Ink: Papertrey Ink Soft Stone, Spring Moss
  • Accessories: Papertrey Ink Wet Paint Holiday dies, Peace Be Still dies, Mama Elephant Femme Frames, Jenni Bowlin Mini North Start Embossing folder

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Freshly Made Sketches: Joy!

It's time for a new sketch at Freshly Made Sketches!

Banners and circles and all kinds of fun!!  As I was paging through my binder of dies the other day, I found a banner die that I had forgotten about.  So it was fun to see this sketch as I knew I had the perfect banner die!  I love that spray of stars.  I know I used it last year for a Halloween card, but it's also quite perfect for this nativity scene.


I did a huge post last week on the high school marching band headed off to state championships.  I have two sons marching in the band and they are both quite fanatical.  I am thrilled to say that the band placed higher than it has in their history - a 7th place overall!!  That was two positions back from where they were ranked after regionals, but they really weren't disappointed as they knew that they had their best performance of all time in regionals. As I stated last week, 5th would have been nice since it felt like 1st place because the bands in front of them are dynasties - double the size of our band and one is almost triple the size!  Their rival band did jump ahead of them, but my kids' knew that that band was very good also.  Of course, I have pictures!  (And, yes, I did plan a blue and red card today because of their band uniforms!!)


Even on the scoreboard!


My senior had a bit of a group feature.  He's the very tall mellophone player, standing, right at the tip of the waving flag.


I did an extreme close-up on my youngest to see the incredible intensity on his face.

027 close

Here they are walking into the stadium after semifinals.


And here's the final awards.  My kids hobbled into the house around midnight and said standing at attention for that long totally wore them out!  You can see what I mean about big bands.  The leading bands are the big ones in the center, tapering off to the outside. Our band is third from the left as you look at the picture.


Thanks for humoring a proud mama!!

Here's the card recipe:
  • Stamps: Papertrey Ink Star of Wonder, Beautiful Blooms ("joy")
  • Paper: Papertrey Ink Scarlet Jewel, Simon Says Stamp Soft Navy, sparkly gold
  • Ink: Papertrey Ink Scarlet Jewel
  • Accessories: Papertrey Ink Notched Star Banner die, Spellbinders circle and scalloped circle, Lifestyle Crafts embossing folders

Saturday, October 25, 2014

Papertrey Blog Hop: Non-Traditional Holiday

Papertrey Ink is having a fun blog hop today - holiday cards with non-traditional colors!  They have given us six non-traditional color swatches to work with.  I picked these rich colors.

I had an idea that I don't think translated well to paper.  I thought about looking into a frosty window at a party scene.  I don't think this gives the impression - I probably should have had a smaller window.  But after covering myself, my desk, my carpet, my cats(!) with glitter - I was posting this card!!

Be Jolly

  • Stamps: Papertrey Ink Birthday Style, Snowflake Flurries, 'Tis the Season
  • Paper: Papertrey Ink Smokey Shadow
  • Ink: Papertrey Ink Smokey Shadow, Scarlet Jewel, Canyon Clay, Simply Chartreuse, Tropical Teal
  • Accessories: Papertrey Ink Birthday Style Dies, Martha Stewart Fine Crystal Glitter, Stampin' Up Heat 'n Stick Powder, small circle punch

Friday, October 24, 2014

Catered Crop: End Zone (focus on the Marching Band!)

It's time for a new challenge at the Catered Crop:  End Zone.  Check out this fun inspirational graphic:

You definitely do not have to do a football card - simply be inspired.

I initially assumed that I would somehow focus on the Denver Broncos as we've been supporting them for 30 years and this is shaping up to be a big year!  But the Broncos played, and won, last night so they are not our weekend focus - instead, in my family it's going to be all about the marching band.

My two sons are both in the Chaparral High School (Chap) Marching Band and it's state championship weekend. They are currently ranked higher than ever in their history.  They are generally a middle of the pack band; however, in regionals two weeks ago, they surpassed all of their expectations.  For the announcement of the winners, the drum majors come out in a line in the order of their performance which is set by the record of their past performances, so they were in 8th position.  Judges are clearly not supposed to be biased, but in virtually every contest, the order they march in is quite close to the order they place.  The announcement starts at the bottom and when they finally got to 8th, it wasn't Chap.  Nor was 7th or 6th.  In fairness, they expected to move up that much, so by 5th place they knew they would hear their name soon, but 5th wasn't them, nor was 4th.  My kids said at this point, they were starting to think the judges had forgotten to call their name because they had never beaten those two bands.  When 3rd place was announced and it wasn't them - in fact, it was my kid's biggest rival - the reality set as to how well they had done.  Our drum majors were still standing back in the 8th position - and then they were announced as 2nd - ah-mazing!!!

To continue to bore you with this whole saga - based on their score and the scores from other regional competitions, they are going into state in 5th place in the 5A category. To be honest, 5th place feels like a win for them.  The bands ahead of them are virtually unbeatable.  Those bands are exceedingly good and have been for years, and they are double and one is almost triple our band's size - so the wall of sound from them is truly amazing.  But my guys want to stay in 5th - they want so much to stay ahead of the rivals that they jumped over in regionals.  If those rivals jump back ahead, our band won't even make finals since only 8 go to finals.  It's been a stressful week in our house as the reality of tomorrow is setting in.  Fingers crossed for semifinals tomorrow at 2:15 p.m.

Now that you have waded through all of that - my cards for this challenge are for my kids in the marching band.  I am going into this with the assumption that they will be thrilled with the outcome so I need cards that say "amazing" and "way to go".  I thought the bold colors of the inspiration graphic would be perfect, but there is nothing fancy because they are, after all, teenage boys. This uses my favorite set for my teenagers - Exclamations by CAS-ual Fridays stamps. The big fonts can easily stand alone.


My second card uses another favorite set to use for my guys - Bravo by Stampin' Up.  

Way to Go

This card also uses the sketch from Fab Friday:

I hope you are inspired by the rich colors and the bold black and white of the challenge graphic.  I look forward to seeing what you create!

  • Stamps: CAS-ual Fridays Exclamations
  • Paper: Becky Higgins Project Life Midnight Edition
  • Ink: Black
  • Accessories: Doodlebug Red and Lawn Fawn Neon Enamel Dots
Way to Go::
  • Stamps: Stampin' Up Bravo
  • Paper: Becky Higgins Project Life Midnight Edition, SU Poppy Parade CS, Astrobrights Glow Cardstock
  • Ink: Black
  • Accessories: My Favorite Things Washi Tape die, Doodlebug Graduation Enamel Stars

Thursday, October 23, 2014

Curvy Keepsake Pumpkins

For those of you that already have or have been stalking the Stampin' Up Curvy Keepsake Thinlit - there's nothing new in this post. I am just doing some jack-o-lanterns and I've included a few links.  I am most definitely not a 3-D crafter.  I do just fine on a flat card-sized canvas - but the cute fancy folds or boxes are out of my comfort zone.  However, the Curvy Keepsake Thinlit just kept calling my name.  I saw these two-toned pumpkins, an apple for school,  a caramel applea pumpkin and gourd and then the Christmas projects started to show up like this lovely Cherry and Gold box.  If you have younger people to craft for, a quick Pinterest search on "Curvy Keepsake Thinlit" will show you owls, turkeys, bats, pigs, Santa, a Santa robin, reindeer, snowmen, babies, witches, black cats, cows, footballs, birdhouses and even Angry Birds. It's really quite amazing.

Stampin' Up has a short video on making the box - here it is on YouTube.  It's really quite self-explanatory but I love the tip on using a bone folder to get the curve.  I wish I would have seen it before I made my little pumpkins - I might not have gotten the crease in the cardstock that you can see on the face!

I wanted to make tiny little treat boxes for my nieces for Halloween - nothing scary - just cute, so for my first Curvy Keepsake attempt, I did simple little pumpkins.  This is officially the cutest thing that I have ever done!!!

Little Pumpkins

I got the gummy candy at Fuzziwig's Candy Factory.  I had seen them in Breckenridge, Colorado, but while I was wandering the Castle Rock Outlet mall yesterday, they are there too. I looked them up and they are nationwide.  I thought this gummy candy corn is a nice change (and quite attractive) for Halloween treats.  I hadn't made any of these gift boxes before and I got quite a large bag of the candy - turns out that only six fit in the box.  Oh well, more for me!

This is my first post in awhile that hasn't been required for a design team.  I am always busy a few weeks in the fall.  Guess what I do multiple hours each a day?  Knit slippers...

Finished Slippers

I have created slipper monsters in my family.  My husband needs a new pair every single year (his are upper left).  He wears them every day, all day, and he does tend to scuff his feet so he wears them out.  My oldest didn't need a new pair this year, but my youngest absolutely had to have them because he's in a new school with new school colors (he picked the funky stripes)!  I finally did a new pair for myself this year.  They are actually still wet in this picture - when they dry they will be a nice heathered lavender.

They are fairly bizarre to make.  They are huge when they are knitted.

Unfelted Slipper

You have to use plain wool (I think other natural fibers also work), then you wash them in very hot water. They felt and shrink to your preferred size! (This is the pattern that I have used for years.)

So I'm done for this year...yay!!  Now I can head back to my preferred hobby of cardmaking!
  • Stamps: Stampin' Up Woodgrain Background, Wonderfall (leaves), Fall Fest (face)
  • Paper: Stampin' Up Pumpkin, Olive and Curry
  • Ink: Stampin' Up Pumpkin, Olive and Curry, Black
  • Accessories: Stampin' Up Curvy Keepsake Thinlit die and the die for Wonderfall, misc ribbon and thick twine

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Freshly Made Sketches: Keep on Flying

It's time for a new sketch at Freshly Made Sketches!

I have a couple of new hanging wreath sets and they seemed like a great choice for this sketch.  A lovely hanging wreath, a beautiful Christmas sentiment, a sprinkle of sequins - my type of card!  Have you ever had one of those days where the simplest of things don't work?  There shouldn't have been anything hard about this card but I just wasn't happy with anything that I did.  And then when I was happy with something, I would invariably smudge it.  I finally swept it all off my desk and decided to go as far away from Christmas and Christmas colors as I could get.  I checked out my never-been-used stash and came up with this charming airplane, found some bold paper - and it all came together in less than 10 minutes!

Fear of Falling

I hope to see you playing along.  Maybe some of you can make the wreath idea work!!
  • Stamps: The Cat's Pajamas Flying By
  • Paper: Simon Says Soft Navy, Fancy Pants As You Wish 6x6
  • Ink: Simon Says Soft Navy, Goldenlocks, Memento Black and Copics
  • Accessories: Misc clear sequins

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Curtain Call Reminder: Burlap Banner

Just a reminder that there is still time to play along at the Curtain Call Inspiration Challenge: Burlap Banner.

The sponsor for this challenge is The Twinery and they have donated a prize package for one randomly selected participant.  Plus, if you are selected as the LEAD for your Burlap Banner inspired card, you will be invited to be a guest for an upcoming challenge.  You do not have to use twine on your card - just be inspired by the Burlap Banner!

When this post first went live, I made this card using striped twine which I think is a very fun look.  For this card, I wanted to highlight the solid twine - in particular the gorgeous Marigold and Caribbean with a little Cappuccino thrown in.

Thankful in Burlap

I used the Blanket Stitch button die from Papertrey Ink.  I didn't actually do the blanket stitch around them, because I would have had to slow down and learn how to do it - but just wrapping this beautiful twine through the holes is a marvelous look.  (FYI - if you try this at home - I did split the twine in half and used only two-ply.)  

I look forward to seeing what you create!
  • Stamps: none
  • Paper: Simon Says Dark Chocolate, Audrey Blue, Sunshine, Papertrey Ink Kraft
  • Ink: None
  • Accessories: The Twinery Solid Twine in Marigold, Caribbean and Cappuccino, Penny Black Words of Gratitude Die, Papertrey Ink Blanket Stitch Button die and Woodgrain embossing, My Favorite Things Fishtail die, Doodlebug Brown Enamel Dots, The Paper Studio Burlap Blossoms (Hobby Lobby)

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Curtain Call Inspiration Challenge: Burlap Banner

This is my second post today.
Freshly Made Sketches is just a post away!

It's time for a new challenge at the Curtain Call Inspiration Challenge: Burlap Banner!

We have a new sponsor, The Twinery, for the Curtain Call Inspiration: Burlap Banner!  A randomly selected participant in the Burlap Banner challenge will receive a fabulous bundle from The Twinery, while the LEAD will be invited as a Guest Designer in a future challenge!

I definitely love twine - it is such a light look for a clean and simple card.  There is solid twine and striped twine - I tend toward the solid, but there are just some cards that cry out for the fun of the stripe!

Happy Happy Happy

I have used three colors of twine from The Twinery: Cappucino, Caribbean and Mandarin. They are perfect matches for the Stampin' Up colors that I used on my card: Soft Suede, Bermuda Bay and Tangerine Tango! I am a math geek at heart, and an organization freak and I love spreadsheets - so it shouldn't surprise you that every twine that I own is in a spreadsheet listed with an ink color that matches.  I also have spreadsheets for ribbons and Stampin' Up designer paper and buttons and more.  I'd say that even I worry about myself sometimes, but it really does speed up the card making process when you can do a quick look up and find matching embellies (at least if you are as matchy-matchy as I am!)
  • Stamps: My Favorite Things Bitty Banners and Birthday Greetings
  • Paper: Stampin' Up Bermuda Bay, Crumb Cake
  • Ink: Stampin' Up Tangerine Tango, Crumb Cake, Bermuda Bay, Soft Suede, Versamark
  • Accessories: The Twinery Striped Twine in Cappucino, Caribbean and Mandarin, My Favorite Things Bitty Banners dies, Hero Arts white embossing powder

The Twinery Designers, our Guest Designer and the Curtain Call Crew have lots of additional inspiration for you today!  Make sure you visit each of the designers' blogs!

Burlap Banner Designers

Freshly Made Sketches: Giving Thanks

It's time for a new sketch at Freshly Made Sketches!

I have a fun new die from Simon Says Stamp that called out to me specifically for this sketch!  I love all of the dies coming out with words integrated as part of the die.

Giving Thanks

Everything came together quickly for me on this card, except for the khaki background.  Plain Khaki looked stark.  I tried embossing folders and even embossed with stencils, I used a stencil and embossing paste, I did the stitching around the outside.  Nothing worked.  Then I remembered this background die by Lil' Inkers called Quilted Stitched Pattern Die.  It's such a nice, warm and comfortable look - I'm going to keep it in a prominent place on my craft desk during the fall and winter holidays!

I hope to see you play along at Freshly Made Sketches.  There are many, many, MANY options with this sketch and I look forward to seeing what you do with it!
  • Stamps: Simon Says Stamp Thanksgiving Table
  • Paper: Simon Says Stamp Audrey Blue, Khaki
  • Ink: Memento Black, Copics, Simon Says Stamp Khaki
  • Accessories: Simon Says Stamp Thanksgiving Feast dies, Giving Thanks die, Lil' Inkers Quilted Stitched Pattern die, My Favorite Things Blueprints 13 (the stitching around edge), Simon Says Stamp Fall Festival Sequins

Monday, October 13, 2014

Tag You're It: Halloween Wishes

I love the new inspiration card at Tag You're It. That pop of autumn color on the gray is fabulous!

I'd love to totally CASE it but I decided to change it up and make it Halloween.  I also just got an order from Pretty Pink Posh which included a set of three tag dies and a bright Halloween sequin mix, so I made a little tag shaker!  

Halloween Wishes

This witch is from one of my favorite Halloween sets - Bootastic   It's absolutely charming but still clearly Halloween.  I didn't leave enough room for one of the sweet sentiments from the same set - so this is an older Hero Arts set full of Halloween sentiments.

Halloween Wishes close
  • Stamps: Mama Elephant Bootastic, Hero Arts Happy Halloween
  • Paper: Papertrey Ink Soft Stone CS and dsp, vellum
  • Ink: Memento Black, Copics, Versamark
  • Accessories: Pretty Pink Posh Stitched Tags die, Pretty Pink Posh 4mm Trick or Treat Mix Sequins, Stampin' Up Pumpkin Grosgrain, Hemptique 10-lb Lime Green

Friday, October 10, 2014

Merry and Retro: Joy

The Neon challenge at Merry Monday caught my eye.  I definitely do not tend to bright colors, but neon paper on kraft can be a great look!  Then the mailman brought my new WPlus9 this week.  Even though I needed more snowflake dies like a hole in the head, I got them - but in my defense they matched the snowflake background stamps which I had to have (but I've only used the dies on this card).  Finally I was thrilled to see that retrosketches announced a totally up-to-date archive.  I love archives - I keep them as a direct icon on my iPad so with one touch, I can see all of the challenges in one place.  I picked sketch #47 for my snowflakes.

Joy in Neon

  • Stamps: none
  • Paper: Astrobrights Glow Cardstock, Papertrey Kraft and Vellum
  • Ink: Versamark
  • Accessories: WPlus9 Snowflake Trio die, Hand Lettered Holiday die, Stampin' Up Heat 'n Stick Powder, Martha Stewart Fine Crystal glitter, Pretty Pink Posh 6mm Sparkling Clear Sequins

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Freshly Made Sketches: Make a Wish

It's time for a new sketch at Freshly Made Sketches!

I purged ruthlessly over the summer.  One of the things that I decreased by easily 90% was my ribbon collection.  It was massive and, sadly, I never used any of it.  I've been in a twine mood lately. (If I ever go back to a ribbon mood, I'm in trouble because it is all gone!)  But I did hang on to five colored rolls of ribbon that I bought ages ago from A Muse.  I knew as soon as I saw this sketch that I would use three colors of the ribbon, then it was a simple matter to see the soft look of this card and pull out an Avery Elle set that is full of gentle creatures.

Make A Wish

I hope to see you playing along at Freshly Made Sketches.  It's a sketch that allows for a lot of options and I look forward to seeing what everyone does with it.
  • Stamps: Avery Elle More Stories (the rabbit), To the Point (sentiment)
  • Paper: Kraft and various colors from an old pad of Glitz and Glam Core'dinations
  • Ink: Memento Black and Copics
  • Accessories: Avery Elle Finished Frames die (the stars), Stampin' Up embossing folder (the stripes), 

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Curtain Call Inspiration and Sweet Sunday Sketch: hope

Just a reminder that there is still time to play along with the current Curtain Call Inspiration Challenge. You have until Friday, October 10th at 8 a.m. CDT to play along for a chance at a guest designer spot and a random winner gets a $25 gift certificate to Paper Smooches!!

I didn't go with the lips for this card, but all of that pink said Breast Cancer Awareness Month to me.  I had been paging through the stamp sets that I have to make cards for breast cancer and realized I had forgotten a very nice set and die by Paper Smooches called Hope.  As part of the Curtain Call design team, I had received the set Blossoming Buds.  The sets seemed like a perfect match!


I used the solid leaf in Blossoming Buds to create the soft pink patterned paper.  I also stamped the square sets of the words "faith hope love" on the small banner.  The hope word die is very nice in that it comes with two awareness ribbon dies.

I hope you are inspired to play along.  I look forward to seeing what you create!

I used the current sketch from Sweet Sunday Sketch.

  • Stamps: Paper Smooches Hope, Blossoming Buds
  • Paper: Stampin' Up Pink Pirouette, Strawberry Slush, My Favorite Things Bubblegum, black
  • Ink: Stampin' Up Pink Pirouette, Strawberry Slush, Memento Black, Copics
  • Accessories: Paper Smooches Hope die, MFT Bubblegum button

Sunday, October 5, 2014

Sweet Birthday Wishes for Hannah!!!

I am blessed to count Stacey Schafer as a true blogging friend - and we've actually spent time together in real life!!  First, she came to Colorado to visit and after a long day of crafting, we had to find a pet store to get a Broncos dog tag for her daughter's new puppy.  About six months later, we met up in Chicago for three days of tourist time and Hannah came too!  We ate and shopped and visited museums and the Skydeck.  Hannah was hanging out with me to walk out on the Skydeck but abandoned me in favor of her mom when it became clear to her that there was no way in heck that I was going to step out on the glass floor 103-stories up!  But when I decided to walk back to the hotel, Hannah graciously agreed to come with me.  It ended up being quite a long walk but very interesting.  We figured out that if you looked up, the gargoyles and other winged creatures on top of the buildings were quite ominous. A few months later, I was honored to be Hannah's first Facebook chat!

Anyway, it's been in my mind for months that I needed to find out the date of her birthday and I've just never gotten it done.  Luckily, I saw cupcakes on Facebook for Hannah's 10th birthday today!!!  So, the card isn't mailed - but I wanted to send sweet birthday wishes to Hannah!!

Sweet Birthday Wishes

Happy 10th Birthday Hannah!! Sweet wishes to you!

  • Stamps: WPlus9 Sweet and Treats, Whole Lotta Happy ("Birthday Wishes")
  • Paper: Doodlebug Sugar Shoppe, My Favorite Things Orange Fizz, Simon Says Doll Pink
  • Ink: Black, Simon Says Doll Pink and Smoke, Copics
  • Accessories: WPlus9 Sweets and Treats dies (just the "sweet" banner), Stampin' Up border Punch, misc sequins
  • Challenge: clean&simple Fall to Layout but upside down

Saturday, October 4, 2014

Color Throwdown and Reverse Confetti: Trick or Treat

This is my third post today.

The next challenge that I wanted to play on World Cardmaking Day is color throwdown.  I love the natural, fall color scheme.

Trick or Treat

I envisioned the natural colors with the chunky Halloween sets from Reverse Confetti, so I also checked out their sketch and it all worked together!!  The sketch also allowed me to use one of their fun dies.  It's just a simple circle (and there are scalloped circles) - but check out the ridge along the edge which makes a clean and simple frame.

I thought I'd get quite a bit more done today for World Cardmaking Day, but I really do have to consider showering and getting ready to head out and cheer my kids on at a marching band competition.  They are virtually certain to make finals - so it's going to be a late night.  It's been a fun day, crafting uninterrupted for four hours (and, yes, I know I only made four cards) - I might have to figure out how to make tomorrow a card day too!

  • Stamps: Reverse Confetti Spooky Cuties and Spooky Sentiments
  • Paper: Carta Bella A Perfect Autumn 6x6, Stampin' Up Kraft and Tangelo Twist
  • Ink: Stampin' Up Tangelo Twist, Simon Says Fog, Black, Versmark
  • Accessories: Reverse Confetti Circle 'n Scallops die, Pretty Pink Posh 6mm Sparkling Clear Sequins, Hero Arts white embossing powder