Thursday, December 29, 2011

PPA Best Dressed List 2011

Actually, I didn't make the best dressed list.  lol !  But, one of my cards DID.  At the end of the year Pals Paper Arts chooses 12 cards (one for each month) as the ones they deemed "best dressed".  PPA is one of the card challenge blogs that I like to play along with.
This description is form the Pals Paper Arts Best Dressed blog post:
Move over  Mr. Blackwell - here comes Pals Paper Arts Best Dressed List for 2011! 
As the year draws to a close, we wanted to take a moment and reflect on this past year at Pals Paper Arts.  We are so thankful for all of the participants who played with us over the past year!!  Each design team member selected a favorite design out of the PPA Picks for each month.  Winners will be given a badge to put on their blog.  Enjoy the Best of the Best for 2011!
Not a bad way to start out my day, huh?
You can follow THIS LINK to see my card, and the comment by the design team member that chose my card.  You'll need to scroll to the bottom of the post, as mine is the December choice.
Thanks for taking a look!

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Happy Birthday - Color Q Challenge

Hi!  I'm back with a birthday card for a family member.  It's for one of the guys...and you stampers know how difficult it can be to make masculine cards.  I did use my pinking scissors.  I just had to do a decorative edge, since I couldn't use bling or ribbons.  Ha!

I'm playing along with the Color Q Challenge #117.  Take a look at the challenge.

And here is my card...

I recently bought the Wonderful Word die set from Papertrey Ink, so this card gave me a chance to use one of those dies.  These dies are so much fun to use.  I did find that I needed to use a extra piece of cardstock as a shim, though.  Otherwise the die didn't cut completely through my card stock.  It was a very simple solution.
I heat embossed the word "birthday" in black, so that it wouldn't get lost in the background print.
Thanks so much for stopping in to take a look!

Supplies ~
cardstock: whisper white, basic black, marina mist (Stampin' Up!)
ink: basic black (SU), versamark (Tsukineko)
stamps: background basics: newsprint, wonderful words additions (Papertrey Ink)
die: wonderful words (PTI)
other: black stampin' emboss powder (SU), mono multi liquid glue (Tombow), pinking scissors (X-acto), heat tool

Monday, December 26, 2011


I was reading Susan R.'s post on her blog today.  Her blog is: Questioning My Intelligence
I really like her idea of a gratitude journal, but it's not something I've "gotten around to doing."  You know what I mean, right?  All those things I want to do...someday.  Well, today I'll start small and do a gratitude blog post.

I'm grateful for:
* my loving and patient husband
* my quiet, patient and fun sister (we're alike in some ways, yet so different in others...right Sis?)
* all of my in-laws.  I couldn't have married into a better family :)
* our nieces & nephews...the 8 here on earth and the 1 in heaven (I'm so very proud of all of them).
* my friends.  The ones I've known 'forever' and the ones I've know for a few years. 
   They are each so different, yet all so precious to me.
* the beauty of nature
* my creativity
* my blog friends & the papercrafting community
* my church & Pastor
And, most of all...I'm grateful for God & all the blessings he's provided.  As Dave Ramsey says, when someone asks him how he's doing..."better than I deserve".
Like most of you, there have been difficult times in my life.  But if I stop and look around...and remind myself.  Yes. I have have so much to be grateful for.

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Holiday Greetings - A center step card

Hi all!
It's been more than 2 weeks since my last post.  I've really missed blogging.  But, I've had a lot of fun in the mean time.  Lots of gatherings with friends to celebrate the holidays :o)

Anyway...this card is going into 2 challenges.
Just Us Girls #114 - A Technique Challenge (a center step fold card)

Pals Paper Arts PPA123 - Puttin' On The Ritz (and some blog candy!)

I just got my recent order from Stampin' Up! a few days ago, and couldn't wait to use some of that silver glimmer paper.  It's sooooo pretty!  I love the bling that it added to this card when I die cut it with a PTI word die.
Take a look.

This is the first time I've tried my hand at making a center step fold card.  It was much easier than I thought and I'm pleased with the results. measures 5-1/2 x 5-1/2, which means it won't fit in any of my envelopes.  That's a little disappointing.  Maybe I'll be creating an envelope for it.

Anyway, it was a fun card to create.  The gals at JUGS provided a link to a tutorial for the center step fold card.  So, take a look.  You just might want to give it a try, too :)
Thanks so much for taking a look.  Let me know if you have any questions.

card stock: night of navy (SU)
patterned paper: AG1327 (Anna Griffin)
stamps: wonderful words-holiday (PTI)
die: wonderful words-holiday (PTI)
other: sterling silver embossing powder (SU), silver pearl (Recollections), silver cord (Darice), snowflake punch (MS)

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Silent Night, Holy Night - CAS-ual Fridays challenge

This is my second post for today.  I enjoyed the sketch challenge at CAS-ual Fridays so much that I stayed up late last night to make a second card.  And now, here I am...blogging...when I should be cleaning my house.  This will have to be a quick post!

Here is Karen's sketch challenge - CAS-ual Fridays CFC29 is my second take on the sketch.

Ahhh.  This is one of those rare times when a card turns out EXACTLY as I'd pictured it in my head. lol!
Usually, when I do a sponged background, I end up creating the background 2 or 3 times until I get it right.  You know, a blotch or a smudge jumps onto my card (through no fault of my own, of course.)  Not this time.
I masked off the area to be sponged, with post-it notes.  I used 6 different blue inks to sponge the background, then stamped the two deer and created the "grass" with the darkest of the inks.  I love using this sponging technique, so if you've followed my blog for a while you've seen it a few times, before.
Anyway, I HAVE to get my house ready for the big Thanksgiving dinner tomorrow.  So...gotta' go!
Thank for looking,

card stock: stamper select white (PTI)
ink: bashful blue, bordering blue, marina mist, pacific point, not quite navy, night of navy (Stampin' Up!)
stamps: in the meadow, Christmas blessings (PTI)
other: gems from my stash, craft sponge

A sympathy card - CAS-ual Fridays challenge

Yes, I had to squeeze in some stamping time before I cleared up my crafting space for the holiday!  My husband's family will be here for Thanksgiving Day, so today is cleaning and prep day.  Which is what I should be doing...instead of blogging.
So.  When I saw Karen's sketch on CAS-ual Fridays blog, two ideas popped into my head.  This is the first one.   I'll do another quick post in a few minutes, with my second card.
Here is the challenge.  CAS-ual Fridays CFC29

My (first) take on the sketch:

I've used the woven ribbon technique on 2 other cards, and I enjoyed it so much. I love the dimension that this technique adds to a card.   Britta Swiderski has a great tutorial for the technique on her blog.  HERE is the link.  Once I'd created the woven ribbon panel, I attached it to an early espresso card stock panel, using Scor-tape.  This particular ribbon is somewhat stiff, so I knew it would need a strong adhesive to hold it in place.
After stamping the sentiment on my white card base, I added 2 tiny brown pearls between the 3 small sentiments.
That just about covers it.  It was an easy, but fun card to create.
Thank you for taking a look!

card stock: select white (PTI), early espresso (SU)
ink: early espresso (SU)
stamps: simple sentiments (PTI)
other: diamond arch brown/white ribbon (Am. Crafts), Scor-tape (Sookwang), 2 brown pearls from my stash

Friday, November 18, 2011

How do you know...? Unscripted Sketches #132

Hi!  Just a quick post with a birthday card that I made for one of the guys I work with.  I needed this card to much larger than a standard A2, so there's enough room for everyone at work to sign it.  So, this was a fold that I haven't done before.  I used a full sheet of card stock, scoring it twice, so it folds in thirds.

I'm playing along in the Unscripted Sketches #132 challenge.  Here's the sketch:

 And, here is my take on the sketch.

Since this is for one of the I didn't dare use any ribbon or bling.  And that was SO difficult! lol
I did some layering over the card base.  I used a border punch on a piece of Night of Navy card stock, then layered a strip of patterned paper over that.  Two Spellbinder dies were used for the sentiment.  Oh, and I wrapped a length of linen thread around the front of the card.
I didn't have a stamp with the type of sentiment I needed for this card.  So I searched online for verses...and this one seemed just right!
Thanks for taking a look!

card stock: river rock, not quite navy, cajun craze, whisper white (Stampin' Up!)
dsp: well worn (SU)
other: linen thread (SU), bracket edge punch (EK), dies (long classic rectangle large & small pinking circles by Spellbinders)

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Tag - you're it...again. CAS-ual Fridays Challenge

Yes, I'm back with a second post today!  I'm posting another Christmas tag for the CAS-ual Fridays "Tag, You're It" Challenge #28.  I'm really enjoying making these tags.  It's a little like making a mini card, I guess.
I used the PTI Tag Sale #5 die, again for the base.  Love this die :)  I popped on a snowflake created with one of PTI's Damask Snowflake dies.  The edges were swiped with a little Chai ink.  Next, I added the tree die cut (also PTI) then created a banner, stamped my sentiment (Christmas Blessings set from PTI) and inked the edges of that, too.  I added a piece of SU linen thread to the top of the tag - and done.
Well, this post has to be short.  Gotta' go!
Thanks so much for stopping in!

Tag - you're it! CAS-ual Fridays Challenge

Hello strangers!  I've been absent from blogging lately...and I've really missed it.  I kept thinking that after summer was over, our weekends would slow down.  Well, not so far - lol.  Tha's okay, it's all good!

Anyway, I couldn't wait to play along in a challenge.  And I can always count on CAS-ual Fridays to come up with a good one.  This time it's CAS-ual Fridays CFC28 - Tag You're It

I just purchased a new tag die from PTI and this was my first chance to use it.  I'm really having fun with it!
Here is the first of the 2 tags I've created so far.  I'll post the other one later.

This is a very clean and simple tag.  I used white and island indigo cardstock.  The top edge of the "hill" that the sled sits on, was heat embossed with irridescent ice embossing powder.  I wrote in my "to" and "from" sentiments.  Then attached the sled die-cut and the ribbon...and called it complete.  I'm almost done with my Christmas cards, so I may be making a few more tags now.

Thanks for taking a look!

card stock: select white (PTI), island indigo (SU)
ink: basic black (SU)
dies: tag sale #5 (PTI),child on sled die from:  in the meadow silhouettes die collection (PTI)
ep: irridescent ice (SU)
other: ribbon from my stash

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Guest Designer at Lily Pad Cards

I've been asked by Deborah to be featured as a guest designer at Lily Pad Cards!   I'll give you a peek at 2 of the cards I created for my guest spot.  I used a variety of techniques and styles for each of the cards.

Celebrate Your Day

This card features heat embossing, gold Stickles, edge punching and baker's twine.

Thinking of You
For this card, I sponged 4 different colors of ink for the sky.  Then, stamped my daisy image over that.

I'm giving you just a peek, in this post ;o)    To see my interview and  more cards...along with the supplies list and instructions for all of them, click on THIS LINK to "hop" on over to the Lily Pad!
Thanks for looking,

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Happy Thanksgiving - a fall themed card

Just this morning, I found a challenge on the new CREATE: blog!. The current challenge is to create a fall themed card.  I'm hoping that Thanksgiving is included in that category, since I want to make a few more for this holiday.
I've included a link to the 10/20/11 post on the CARDS Create blog, so that you can click through for the details.  You'll need to scroll all the way down to the bottom of the post for details on how to participate in the challenge.

I started by clear embossing the tree image on my panel.  Then I sponged it with More Mustard, Really Rust and Cranberry Crisp inks to get a very soft variation of colors.  The sentiment is stamped in Cranberry Crisp.  I stitched this panel onto a piece of Cherry Cobbler card stock, then adhered it all to a base of Creamy Caramel card stock.  To finish the card, I added a few gems.  That's about it!  Thanks so much for taking a look.

card stock: creamy caramel, cherry cobbler (Stampin' Up!)
ink: more mustard, really rust, cranberry crisp (SU)
stamps: happy thanksgiving (Stampabilities), leaves of a tree (SU)
other: versamark (Tsukeniko), clear embossing powder (Stampendous), gems (The Paper Studio), sponge dauber (SU), heat tool, thread, sewing machine

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Christmas Tree - C4C110

Hey, I'm back with another post today :)
Yes...another Christmas card.  I hope you're not getting tired of seeing holiday cards, because I'm NOT getting tired of making
This on is going in the challenge at Crazy 4 Challenges - C4C110
This is Tammy's challenge for us:  One layer CAS cards, with the base of the card as the only "layer" today.  The only exception is cutting out images and/or one die-cut embellishment.

And, here is my CAS (clean and simple) card, with one die-cut embellishment.

I've used my Sizzix Christmas tree die again.  It's the perfect size to use on cards.  This card came together quickly.  I added a few lines of Frosted Lace Stickles to the pattern on the tree, tied a bow of baker's twine to the top and stamped my sentiment.  And that was it!
Thanks for looking!

card stock: white (PTI)
stamp: love lives here - holiday (PTI)
dsp: holly berry bouquet (SU)
other: Christmas tree die (Sizzix), white baker's twine (SU), frosted lace stickles (Ranger)

Snowman...peace * love * joy - CAS-ual Fridays CFC#25

I'm adding another Christmas card to my stash today.  With this card, I'm playing along in the following challenge:
CAS-ual Fridays CFC#25 is Just Add Color
My card ~

I've been wanting to use this cute Penny Black "Frosty" stamp that I bought a few weeks ago.  I decided that this was the time.  When you see my card, you'll see that I didn't add a lot of any stretch of the imagination.  But I DID add color.  I pulled out my (long neglected) Prismacolor pencils and the OMS, and gave Frosty some shading along one side to give him a little dimension.  I'm really pleased with the results...and I'm thinking that I need to do more coloring :)
I added a few score lines above and below my image, stamped my sentiment, then finished off with some diamond Stickles on the snowflakes.

Thanks so much for visiting.  I hope you'll leave a comment; I love reading them :)

card stock: stampers select white (Papertrey Ink)
stamps: frosty (Penny Black), Christmas blessings (PTI)
ink: jet black StazOn (Tsukeneko), riding hood red (Stampin' Up!)
other: cloud blue & light cerulean blue pencils (Prismacolor), oderless mineral spirits (GinaK Designs), blending stumps (GinaK Designs), diamond stickles (Ranger), Scor-Pal

Autumn Colors in Northern Illinois

If you've stopped in looking for a'll need to look at my next post.  I wandered outside with my camera, late yesterday afternoon.  I love taking nature photos, especially this time of the year.  I love the rich colors of autumn.  The contrast of the crisp, clear blue sky against the yellow and red leaves.  And even the brown leaves!
Although, we still have a number of maple trees that still have their "summery" green leaves.  So there are many colors to choose from!
You'll also see that we still have a few blooms in the flower gardens.  In fact, the red roses look much better now than they did this summer.  During the summer, they were covered with Japanese beetles.  And many of the leaves were destroyed.  Once the beetles finally left...the roses thrived!

Enough talking.  Here are the pics.
I love the angle of the late afternoon light on this maple leaf.

I found this leaf, all alone, on our front porch.

Ahhh...a red rose bloom in late October.  What a wonderful gift from God!

Sedum...I really like the deep color of the blooms this year.

The leaves on this maple tree are just beginning to change color.

A few leaves on the same tree as above.

Yellow conflowers.

I don't know what coneflower variety this is, but I love all of the layers in these blooms.
Thanks for taking a look at my photos.  I hope you enjoyed them :o)

Hey friend! Freshly Made Sketches Challenge

Today, I'm playing along with Freshly Made Sketches #631 Challenge.  A sketch always helps me with a starting point for my cards. There...