Wednesday, October 25, 2023

Freshly Made Sketches: Serene Bird

It's time for a new sketch at Freshly Made Sketches! Today we have a sketch by Judy and here’s what I did with it!
Serene Bird

I love the look of the Serene Bird from Memory Box; it's absolutely perfect for a sentiment that includes "peace". I used the branch that comes with it as one of my banners. 

The rest of the card was a stretch for me but I love how it turned out.  First, I am not a huge fan of classic red and green. I know that's blasphemy for a cardmaker who does Christmas.  I struggle to use it on the clean white-background cards that I lean towards which is probably more of a statement on my cardmaking skills than on the colors!!  I love the colors toned down a bit - in Stampin' Up colors that would be Sweet Sorbet or Poppy Parade along with Parakeet Party or Granny Apple Green. OR I love classic red and green on kraft.  But I do love this paper pack from Stampin' Up and this piece had the blues and wheat and even some pops of white so I went with it.

Second, I would have said with certainty that I did not like the new color, Wild Wheat, but I do like it here.  I planned on a blue background for the bird and I tried them all but they didn't stand out enough against the pattern. So I hesitantly pulled out my Wild Wheat paper and I ended up loving the richness of it.  I can't say I'm a convert but I see that it has its place!

Do you love the pink color cast of the photo?  You should have seen it before I did some color correcting! It's due to the massive and truly gorgeous red maple outside my craft room window.  I wouldn't trade it for the world but there's a number of weeks where everything in my house has a pink/red color cast!  (FYI - I just use a freebie photo editor and it doesn't have the power to only color correct the background. If I take out the rest of the pink, the card itself changes to some truly odd colors!)

I hope to see you playing along with us at Freshly Made Sketches.


Dies: Memory Box Serene Bird and Branch

Paper: Stampin' Up Garden Walk 6x6 dsp, cardstock in Wild Wheat, Garden Green and Poppy Parade

Monday, October 23, 2023

CAS Colours & Sketches: Blessed

I have not done a slimline in ages and I actually enjoy doing them so when I saw the challenge at CAS Colours & Sketches, I knew I had to play along. 

Blessed Beyond Measure

The "good" reason for this card is that it will go out to the son who moved to Michigan and his girlfriend.  It's somewhat cute for her, but the rich fall colors keep it from being to feminine.  I also want to remind him that he's blessed - he has a good job, a nice apartment and this girlfriend seems sane!!  The very selfish reason for this card is that I have my Thanksgiving cards ready to go so my unused fall products are going back into a basket under my rolling cart and this tall slimline stamp set just doesn't fit!!  Selfish or not, I love that my two needs came together!! 

Doing this card, or actually photographing this card, reminded me why I hadn't done a slimline in a while. It's very hard to get a tall card in a square photo.  I compounded my problem by using gold embossing powder. In the photos I took with my normal set-up, the sentiment just looked like a dull brown - so I ended up directing a light at it to get a bit of shine. The struggle continued with the pinkish cast to the right (although you should have seen the picture before I used photo editing software and got rid of the pink cast that was over most of it).  But that's due to the glorious red maple - which is currently a blazing red color - that sits right outside my craft room window and I can only complain about the pink/red color so much because the tree is utterly gorgeous. Of course instead of whining, I could actually learn about photography - but I think I'd rather be making another card!!!

Thanks to the inspiration from CAS Colours & Sketches because this slimline ended up being exactly what I needed.


Stamps: Trinity Stamps Slimline Woodsy background (and dies), The Greetery Blessed Blooms (the sentiment) and dies

Dies: Trinity Stamps Modern Embossed Rectangle Stack and Slimline Modern Embossed Frames

Cardstock: Stampin' Up Pecan Pie, Mango Melody

Thursday, October 19, 2023

52 Christmas Card Throwdown: Gingerbread

When the color brown showed up in the current challenge at 52 Christmas Card Throwdown, it reminded me that I had Stampin' Up die set from last year that I hadn't given enough love to - the Gingerbread dies.  I paired it with sentiments from the new mini catalog - Christmas Classics.

Happy Christmas Wishes

I love the detail on these gingerbread dies and the set has the peppermint candy too! To make the peppermint candy stand out from the white background, I used some shimmer spritz although I didn't take a good enough picture for it to show. 

I balanced the weight of the gingerbread with a small strip of paper from the same suite of products. I love that it has coordinating frosting swirls! 

A big thank you to 52 Christmas Card Throwdown for reminding me to use this die set!


Stamps: Stampin' Up Christmas Classics

Dies: Stampin' Up Gingerbread, Scalloped Countors

Paper: Stampin' Up Gingerbread & Peppermint 6x6 dsp, cardstock in Cinnamon Cider and Real Red

Ink: Stampin' Up Gingerbread

Other: Shimmer spray, Stampin' Up Toile Tidings Glitter Dots

Wednesday, October 18, 2023

Freshly Made Sketches: Nostalgic Season

It's time for a new sketch at Freshly Made Sketches! Today we have a sketch by Jacquie and here’s what I did with it!
Tis the Season

I got Catherine Pooler's Nostalgic Season set last year and I can't believe I haven't used it. Everything I've seen done with it is absolutely charming. There is a reindeer and a Christmas tree in it and those are the reasons I actually got the set. Since I didn't use those, I guess this needs to remain in my need-to-use basket, at least until the reindeer makes an appearance!!  But isn't it fun that it had these other stamps that worked beautifully with the sketch!

The set has the color blocks for each stamp so for instance, you can easily add three colors to the stockings because there are three separate stamps to add the color!  The garland is from a different set but it absolutely required to have if you have the Nostalgic Season set!

I hope to see you playing along with us at Freshly Made Sketches.


Stamps: Catherine Pooler Nostalgic Season and dies, Garland Borders

Cardstock: Papertrey Ink Aqua Mist

Ink: Stampin' Up Flirty Flamingo and Mango Melody, Papertrey Ink Aqua Mist, Taylored Expressions Lime Zest, My Favorite Things Lemon Zest

Monday, October 16, 2023

Hand Stamped Sentiments: Blessings

I thought the current colors at Hand Stamped Sentiments would be great on a fall card with a bit of a unique look. I also was in the mood to truly challenge myself and there are a couple of colors in the challenge that I'm not in love with. (I'm not naming names!)  I just got some fall dies from Lawn Fawn so decided to do a gourd and pumpkin grouping.

Thanksgiving Blessings

The layout and the sentiment took a number of turns but I finally settled on grouping the gourds on top of a die cut sentiment. With the Stitched Gourd and Pumpkins that I just got, I also ordered the Harvest Crate set which also has a signpost.  I had already cut the Blessings (by Photoplay) before realizing that the coordinating stamps for the die were just too small for the signpost - so found a retired Lawn Fawn set that happened to have "thanksgiving"!

I'm still not loving a couple of the colors, but I do like the uniqueness of this combination.  Thank you to Hand Stamped Sentiments for the inspiration!


Stamps: Lawn Fawn Happy Feast - retired ("thanksgiving")

Dies: Lawn Fawn Stitched Gourds, Stitched Pumpkins and Harvest Crate, Photoplay Say It With Stamps Blessings

Paper: Stampin' Up Cardstock in Calypso Coral, Lost Lagoon, Blackberry Bliss and Pebbled Path, Playing with Patterns 6x6 dsp (retired)

Ink: Stampin' Up Blackberry Bliss

Other: Stampin' Up Tinsel Gems 3-Pack, Stampin' Up Subtle Embossing Folder

Thursday, October 12, 2023

52 Christmas Card Throwdown: Joyful and Merry

I'm playing along with the current sketch at 52 Christmas Card Throwdown using three cute little trees by Echo Park.

Joyful and Merry Trees

I loved the idea of three little Christmas images in a row! Then as I was flipping through my Christmas stash, I found these new-to-me Christmas trees and they fit the sketch. I went for cheerful colors, slightly different than typical Christmas colors. It was turning out so light and fresh that I struggled a bit with the stripe behind them because I wanted to keep it subtle. Then I realized sparkly snowbanks fit the sketch and added interest without detracting from these cute little trees. 

A big thank you to 52 Christmas Card Throwdown for the inspiration!


Stamps: Penny Black Jolly Snippets

Dies: Echo Park Three Trimmed Trees

Cardstock: Stampin' Up Daffodil Delight, Mango Melogy, Flirty Flamingo, Coastal Cabana, Granny Apple Green and Pecan Pie, Taylored Expressions Cupcake, My Favorite Things Field Day, glitter paper from Michaels

Ink: My Favorite Things Field Day

Wednesday, October 11, 2023

Freshly Made Sketches: Thankful Grateful Blessed

It's time for a new sketch at Freshly Made Sketches! Today we have a sketch by Amy and here’s what I did with it!

Thankful Grateful Blessed

I originally imagined this sketch on a more modern card with bright, fresh color palette.  Obviously I didn't end up that way. For me, autumn brings out a classic old-fashioned look and I was definitely feeling it when I made this card! 

The background paper drove the entire card - it's from an old paper pad but it felt like a quilt print to me and that's the mood that I was in. (Of course, it might be that we haven't turned on the furnace in the house yet because it is still getting quite warm during the day, but the early mornings are quite frigid and anything quilt-like is welcome!)  Then I found leaves that fit in little circles. I got this Taylored Expressions die set for an entirely different look - I wanted a variety of fall colors in each little cut-out area - but I like the way it turned out.  Not colorful, but very eye-catching! The sentiment was selected only because it fit in the square! It actually comes from a Gina K Wreath Builder set.

I hope to see you playing along with us at Freshly Made Sketches.


Stamps: Gina K Autumn Wreath Builder (the sentiment)

Dies: Taylored Expressions Mosaic Beech Leaf, Stitched Circle Stacklets, Stitched Square Stacklets, Stitched Rectangle Stacklets and Petite Rectangle Scallop Stacklets

Paper: Simple Stories Hello Fall, Stampin' Up Crushed Curry and Misty Moonlight, Taylored Expressions Sweet Potato Pie

Other: Stampin' Up Wonderful Gems

Thursday, October 5, 2023

A Horde of Zombies!

Halloween is just not my favorite holiday. It's a long story involving memories of my childhood a very long time ago when times were simpler and Halloween at least seemed safe, then 30 years of my adult life on a 5-acre property without trick-or-treaters, then moving into town and totally looking forward to trick-or-treaters and the first young one tripping down the single step at my front door and screaming at the top of his lungs.  And that was the end of it! My only nod to Halloween is a garden flag with witch legs in my front yard and the purchase and eating of an entire bag of Mellowcreme pumpkins (which no matter they say, are different from candy corn!)

Zombie Horde

I took a couple of long weekends off of work as the weather cooled to do some cleaning and organizing. That sounds sad, but I actually adore the act of organizing.  My craft desk is included in the clean-up and one thing I decided was to get any Halloween products out of my not-yet-used stash. Then this will be the last year that I send any Halloween cards.  My sons really don't care and my nieces have never really done Halloween so a lack of Halloween cards won't be missed.

Zombie Horde

But I did have to use some zombie products I got from Impression Obsession before it all got stashed away.  They have a fabulous zombie edger die that I actually used for Valentines! See it here.  This year, I'm using their Zombie Sayings set along with a zombie (that I'm not seeing in their store, but maybe I'm missing it). I kept it all very simple - because my husband and adult sons don't like lots of stuff on their cards - but how wonderful are these sayings???

Zombie Horde

I don't usually do Halloween for my husband, but the "Back in my day..." sentiment was too perfect for him.  My youngest son and his phone was also an inspiration for the first card.  The other sentiment that I wanted to use from the sentiment set was "When life closes a door it opens a window. Then zombies climb in and eat you" but for my oldest son who struggled to find a job and whose life is just starting to come together, I just didn't want to burden him with zombies crawling in his window!!!  So "keep calm" just seemed better.

Zombie Horde

I may not love Halloween but those were fun cards to make!!


Stamps: Impression Obsession Zombie Sayings and also a zombie from them

Dies: Memory Box Graveyard Landscape and Dangling Spider, CC Designs Bats, Little B Halloween (the cobweb)

Paper: from a couple of very old pads: Glitz Raven and Doodlebug Haunted Manor, Taylored Expressions cardstock in Sweet Potato Pie and Pumpkin

Wednesday, October 4, 2023

Freshly Made Sketches: Thankful

It's time for a new sketch at Freshly Made Sketches! Today we have a sketch by Narelle and here’s what I did with it!

Thankful Stitched Leaves

The oxidized paper from Stampin' Up might be the prettiest paper I've ever seen.  However, it's very hard to photograph.  I wanted to get a little shine on it but in so doing, the rest of the card just isn't a vibrant white.  Hopefully you get the idea.  One of the oxidized papers comes with some pretty peacock in it; the other paper is just basic colors. I went with the peacock just for the fun of a peacock leaf and sentiment.  

The leaves are an older Stampin' Up die set. I really wanted this year's leaf die set that had the veins of the leaves as a separate die so each leaf is beautifully accented - but it's almost impossible for me to justify another leaf die in my stash.  I do like these retired stitched leaves so I guess I'm OK letting the leaf veins go!!

I needed a smaller sentiment than anything I had in my Stampin' Up stash so I used "thankful" from the Altenew Celebrate us set. It's not a set that you would think would have a word like "thankful" but it does.  Then the white background needed a little something - so I used Papertrey Ink's Stitched Border Bling for just a hint of detail. 

I hope to see you playing along with us at Freshly Made Sketches.


Dies: Stampin' Up Stitched Leaves, Altenew Celebrate Us ("thankful"), Papertrey Ink Border Bling: Stitched

Paper: Stampin' Up Oxidized Copper Specialty dsp, cardstock in Copper Clay and Pretty Peacock

Other: Stampin' Up Adhesive-Backed Speckled Dots

Sunday, October 1, 2023

Atlantic Hearts Sketch: So Very Thankful

I saw the sketch at the Atlantic Heart Sketch challenge and I had a new-to-me leaf die on my desk along with some new fall papers - and it all came together!!

So Very Thankful

Fall, my favorite season, is very late this year.  We were in the mountains last week. We were there almost exactly a year ago and saw the most amazing fall colors that I had ever seen (at least in Colorado!)  Even today, my glorious red maple tree outside my craft room window has one red branch - the rest is solidly green. So I'll have to celebrate fall through cardmaking. 

I got the leaf die because of a variety of cards that I saw with this branch from PinkFresh cut multiple times for a large bouquet of leaves - it's a wonderful look. But when I saw the sketch, I thought it would work well dangling from the top with a little bow.  The sentiment is new from The Greetery in their August release - Thanks All Ways. It's a fabulous stamp/die set with large "Thanks", "Thankful" and "Thanksgiving" along with alot of little sentiments to fit those words.  Exactly the kind of set that I adore!

Thanks to the Atlantic Hearts Sketch challenge for the inspiration!


Stamps: The Greetery Thanks All Ways and dies

Dies: PinkFresh Fall Leaf

Paper: LDRS Creative Songbird Fields, Taylored Expressions Blue Corn cardstock

Ink: Taylored Expressions Sweet Potato Pie

Other: YNS Sugar Rush Gumdrops