This week’s challenge at 52 {Christmas} Card Throwdown was to create a Christmas card using the triple time stamping technique.  I’ve done this technique once before, so I decided to give it a go again.

My first attempt didn’t even make it into a finished card.  Enough said.  My second attempt, with a different image, turned out kind of okay.  I did make it into a card but I think it needs some tweaking before it’s photograph-ready.  So I decided to start over again, and this time I listened to my gut instinct and went the “K.I.S.S.” route – “Keep It Simple, Stamper”.  This card is by far my favorite of the three, although the red seems a little overpowering to me.  I tried it with green layers but that didn’t look right with the poinsettia petals.  I probably should have stamped the sentiment in green.  But it’s definitely not my worst creation, LOL. And it was nice to pull out this older stamp set and use it again.

Thanks for stopping by! I do read all comments, and I appreciate each one.

All supplies used in creating this card are from Stampin’ Up.
Stamps: Paint Prints, Christmas Greetings
Cardstock: Real Red, Very Vanilla
Ink: Real Red, Wild Wasabi, So Saffron

This week’s Dynamic Duos color challenge called for the colors Soft Suede and Crumb Cake, and the OWH Stars & Stamps Midweek Throwdown challenge is to create birthday cards.  So I decided to make a birthday card using those colors.  I kept the card really clean and simple.  This color scheme seemed masculine to me so I tried to give the card a masculine feel with some tree images, a sentiment in a rather plain font, and a very simple ribbon embellishment.

Thanks for stopping by today!

All products used in making this card are from Stampin’ Up.
Stamps: Trendy Trees, Birthday Whimsy
Cardstock: Naturals Ivory, Soft Suede
Ink: Crumb Cake, Soft Suede
Other: Crumb Cake seam binding

Hello! It’s Friday! I am looking forward to this weekend! My older son has been accepted into the 16th annual Virginia Tech Honor Band, so we will be heading to Blacksburg along with several other students from his school and two other parent chaperones. It should be a lot of fun. I just hope the weather isn’t too brutal. I don’t mind snow, but I’m not a big fan of ice nor strong, cold winds. At any rate, it will definitely be a learning experience.

Another fun thing about it being Friday is that it’s time for a new Sweet ‘n Sassy Digi Challenge! This week our challenge is called It’s All White. Only white cardstock can be used on your project! You’re allowed to color your digital image, and you may use embellishments that are colored. But no colored cardstock, and no pretty designer papers – unless they are white! You don’t have to use a Sweet ‘n Sassy digital image, but we do enjoy seeing our participants use them (and you get the chance for extra perks if you do – see the Digi Challenge site for more details!). Link your card at the Sweet ‘n Sassy Digi Challenge site by midnight eastern time Thursday, January 31.

I’ve made a birthday card for today’s challenge, mainly because I wanted to add another birthday card to the box I sent yesterday to Operation Write Home for their Race You to the Mailbox card drive.  I colored the Tommy Turtle image and the balloons with Copic markers and cut them apart so I could add in twine for the balloon strings.  I printed Tommy’s left front leg and colored it an additional time so I could attach it over top of the balloon strings to make it look like he’s really holding them.  I knew I wanted to color Tommy green, but I was having a hard time deciding what color(s) to make the balloons.  So I looked to the OWH Design Bootcamp post on color theory for suggestions.  I chose to use red balloons for a complimentary color scheme with the green.  The layout for this card comes from this week’s Freshly Made Sketches challenge.  It’s a great sketch that can be played down for a CAS card or played up with lots of layers or embellishments.  I also noticed that this week’s ABC Challenge is to make birthday cards, so I figured why not join in that one, too.

Now it’s your turn!  What will you create with only white cardstock?  I’m looking forward to seeing what you make!

Digital Images: Tommy Turtle’s Balloons, Masculine Birthday Greetings (Sweet ‘n Sassy Stamps)
Cardstock: Pure Luxury White (Gina K. Designs)
Ink: printer ink
Other: markers (Copic); cherry twine (Really Reasonable Ribbon); Swiss Dots embossing folder (ProvoCraft)

As I mentioned a few weeks ago, I’ve started participating in the 52 {Christmas} Card Throwdown challenges this year to help build a supply of Christmas cards to donate to Operation Write Home in the fall. When I learned that the challenge this week was a recipe challenge, my first reaction was “Yay! Recipe challenges are usually fun!”  Then I started reading the recipe “ingredients”.

Patterned paper was the first one listed.  NO problem there – I certainly have plenty of patterned paper around here.  The hard part is choosing one(s) to use!  Then I saw the second item.  Glitter.  Uh oh.  Glitter is a big no-no for Operation Write Home cards because it can be detected by night vision goggles.  If glitter were to come off a card and remain on a military service member’s uniform, it could unwittingly make that person more easily located by hostile forces and put into harm’s way.  However, OWH realizes that there are lots of crafters who do love using the sparkly stuff, so they do allow for small amounts of glitter *IF* it cannot flake off of a card.  So I thought, “OK, I’ll have to use Stickles.”  Whew – potential crisis averted.  The third item on the list wasn’t too bad – decorating the inside of the card.  Usually I leave the insides of my OWH cards plain so the men and women have plenty of space to write home to their loved ones.  But I do like the extra special touch that decorating the inside can give a card.

After a lot of thought and one false start, I finally decided to paper piece a little scene.  The snowy sky, the owl, and the owl’s scarf are all created from patterned papers.  I added some Stickles to the tree branch and the top of the snowy ground to give the impression of sun glistening on them.  I’ve popped up the owl with dimensional adhesive.

Here’s the inside of the card.  I matted a narrow strip of the snowflake print paper to coordinate with the outside of the card.  Then I stamped another owl and added a row of tiny hearts.  I couldn’t get the card to stand up for this photo, so I had to go about the picture from a different angle.

So there it is… patterned paper, with glitter, and the inside of the card is decorated.  Ta-da! Of course, now I have that song playing in my head. LOL  At least that isn’t too bad of a problem to have.  Maybe I’ll listen to my Love Actually soundtrack CD this afternoon to try to get it out.

This card also works for the Winter Wonderland challenge at the Lawnscaping challenge blog.

Thanks for visiting today!

Stamps: Winter Owl (Lawn Fawn); Season of Friendship (Stampin’ Up)
Cardstock: Naturals White, Early Espresso (SU); patterned papers from Aspen Frost and Ambrosia 6″ x 6″ paper pads (Basic Grey)
Ink: Early Espresso (SU)
Other: Star Dust Stickles (Ranger)

Hello!  Today I’m combining the current Dynamic Duos color challenge with this week’s OWH Stars & Stamps sketch challenge.  I made one small change to the sketch by omitting the smallest rectangular panel and just stamping the sentiment directly onto the image panel.  I colored the flower stamp with markers and then spritzed it with water to give a little bit of a watercolor effect.  I wanted another “missing you” card to complete the box of cards I’m getting ready to send to Operation Write Home, so I opted out of the Dynamic Duos “dessert option” to use a Valentine theme.



Thanks for stopping by today!

Stamps: The Art of Life (Stampin’ Up); Right at Home (Hero Arts)
Cardstock: Real Red, Basic Black (SU); Pure Luxury Ivory (Gina K. Designs)
Ink: Real Red (SU)
Other: Real Red and Basic Black markers, black brads (SU); Victoria embossing folder (ProvoCraft)

I’ve never really considered Easter as a card-sending occasion, but I know some people like to send cards to their loved ones, so I do make a few for Operation Write Home.  I shared one card last Friday, and today’s post has another Easter card.

Today’s card was created following the Inkspirational “CASE” challenge.  There are several different variations among the crafting world about what “CASE” stands for; I prefer the definition “Copy And Selectively Edit”.  So I’ve used the exact layout of the sample card, but changed up the colors, images and orientation (the original has the fold at the top, but mine folds on the left), and added some piercing.  I stamped the eggs on the white panel and attached it flush to the card base.  The blue panels on top of it were attached with dimensional adhesive – partly to avoid smushing the piercing, and partly just to give some extra visual interest.


Thanks for stopping by today!  Be prepared to see some more Easter cards over the next week or so.

Stamps: Easter Eggs (Close to My Heart); Egg-Cited Cocoa (Sweet ‘n Sassy Stamps)
Cardstock: Bashful Blue, Whisper White (Stampin’ Up)
Ink: Bashful Blue, Daffodil Delight, Certainly Celery (SU)
Other: piercing tool (Making Memories); dimensionals (SU)

It took me a while to decide what to create with this week’s Freshly Made Sketches layout.  I’ve been trying to get a variety of cards together to send to Operation Write Home for their “Race You to the Mailbox” challenge, and I couldn’t decide which type of card (birthday, missing you, etc.) would work best with the sketch.  Finally I settled on the idea of using the sketch for an AnyHero card – a card in which I’ll write a note of thanks one of our military men or women for the brave service he or she is providing to our country. I kept the card pretty simple but tried to give it a patriotic feel.

The best thing about this layout?  I had cut both of the designer papers into a rectangle first, then sliced them in half to get my triangles.  I used the “leftovers” of the triangles, and the other half of the sheet of cardstock for the base, to create a look-alike card.  So I was able to make two cards rather quickly!

Stamps: Seeing Spots, Patriotic Cocoa (Sweet ‘n Sassy Stamps)
Cardstock: River Rock, Whisper White, Western Sky designer series papers (Stampin’ Up)
Ink: Ruby Red (SU)
Other: Star #2 die (Sizzix); standard circle Nestabilities dies (Spellbinders)

Happy Friday! It’s time for another Sweet ‘n Sassy Digi Challenge! This week’s challenge is an easy one: Anything Goes! Simply make something featuring a digital image. It can be a card, a gift bag, a tag, a scrapbooking layout, or an altered project. The sky’s the limit! Share your artwork over at the Sweet ‘n Sassy Digi Challenge website before midnight eastern time Thursday, January 24. We’d love to see what you create! Although we especially enjoy seeing what our challenge participants make with Sweet ‘n Sassy digital images, you can use a digi from any stamp company.

Today is especially exciting because Sweet ‘n Sassy Stamps is introducing 7 new digital images!  That’s right, 7!  Let me tell you, they are ADORABLE.  Each is a different animal with a sentiment to match.  The rest of the design team and I are showcasing different ones this week, so please check out everyone’s blogs so you can see all the new cuties!  Links are over in the left sidebar.  And yes – there are two new links over there because we have two new design team members!  Welcome, Lori Finch and Amy Wright!

I have two projects for you today.  The first one uses the Turtley Awesome image and its accompanying sentiment.  I chose this image because I wanted to add a card that could be sent to a boy to my Operation Write Home stash.  The layout for this card started off as this week’s sketch challenge, but I decided to leave off one of the sketch elements.  I’ve paper pieced the turtle using two shades of green designer paper, and I used dimensional adhesive to pop its head out of its shell.  Although there isn’t a dominating amount of green on this card, I think it still fits into this week’s OWH Midweek Throwdown challenge.


My other project is another card for Operation Write Home.  I chose to use the image from Thank Ewe in a different way.  I added a little bit of coloring to the lamb to give it some visual dimension (although it would also be cute with the head popped up like I did with the turtle), paired it with this week’s Stars & Stamps sketch, and added a sentiment from one of the Sweet ‘n Sassy clear stamp sets.  And ta-da: an Easter lamb!  I did mirror-image the sketch so the lamb wouldn’t appear to be looking off the edge of the card.  The oval element of the sketch reminds me of an Easter egg!


So now it’s time for you to check out what the rest of the design team has done with the other new images, and then create your own project to share with us!  Thanks for stopping by today.  Have a fabulous weekend!

Supplies for the turtle card:
Digital Image: Turtley Awesome (Sweet ‘n Sassy Stamps)
Cardstock: textured white (Bazzill); Pure Luxury White (Gina K. Designs); designer papers from Green at Heart 6″ x 6″ paper pad (Basic Grey)
Ink: printer ink
Other: dimensionals (Stampin’ Up)

Supplies for the lamb card:
Digital Image: Thank Ewe (Sweet ‘n Sassy Stamps)
Sentiment Stamp: Egg-Cited Cocoa (SNSS)
Cardstock: Pure Luxury White (Gina K. Designs); Elegant Eggplant (Stampin’ Up); designer papers from Green at Heart 6″ x 6″ paper pad (Basic Grey)
Ink: printer ink; Tuxedo Black (Memento)
Other: dimensionals (SU); markers (Copic)

This week’s challenge at 52 {Christmas} Card Throwdown really had me stumped all week.  It’s a color challenge, and the required colors are purple, silver and white.

For several days, I was at a loss as to what to make for this challenge.  Even though my family does have some purple Christmas ornaments, purple isn’t a color that comes to my mind when I think of Christmas colors.  I’m such a realist, I had a hard time with the idea of doing something purple with trees, although I suppose sometimes at twilight the darkness does seem more purple than black.  I considered doing something with ornaments or presents, but nothing along those lines came together very well in my brain.  I thought about doing something with a poinsettia image, but then I would have wanted to add green leaves, and green wasn’t included in the challenge colors.  I tried a few things with my purple Gelatos but didn’t like the results at all.  It wasn’t until this week that I realized I have very few snowflake and star stamps that I really like.  I tussled with the question of whether to do direct stamping or paper piecing.

Finally I decided to go against my tendencies toward realism and try something with this snowman image.  I had made a similar card in shades of blue several years ago, and I thought I might be able to pull it off with purple.  And I have to say I’m pretty pleased with the final result.  The image and the sentiment are heat embossed.  The ribbon does match the cardstock better in real life than the camera shows. I’ll be adding a white liner inside the card before I send it to Operation Write Home.

So whew – I finally got something made for this week’s challenge!  I’ll still keep my ideas for ornaments and presents in my head for future challenges. Maybe those concepts will come together better later.

Stamps: A Beautiful Season (Stampin’ Up); Happy Everything (Lawn Fawn)
Cardstock: Elegant Eggplant, Whisper White (SU)
Ink: Silver (Colorbox)
Other: Silver Pearl embossing powder (PSX); silver mini brads (Making Memories); Eggplant grosgrain ribbon (SU)

Today’s card is a blending of three rather different challenges.  First off, Lawnscaping is celebrating their second birthday, so their challenge is to create a birthday or celebratory card.  The CAS-ual Fridays challenge this week is to create a card that celebrates an accomplishment, and that contains at least one circle.  I think getting through another year and celebrating a birthday can be an accomplishment, don’t you?  And once I figured which stamps I wanted to use for my card, this week’s Dynamic Duos color challenge lent itself perfectly to creating a little scene.

The cow on today’s card is actually a leftover from something I was working on some time in the last year.  She’s been sitting on my desk this whole time and I thought it would be cute to pair her with the sentiment “holy cow!”  I wanted her to have a party hat to help show off the birthday theme, but I also toyed with the idea of drawing in a halo to go along with the sentiment. In the end the party hat by itself won out.  The circle element for the CAS-ual Fridays challenge is the sun, punched from a scrap of designer paper, with narrow scraps added for rays.  The scrap of floral designer paper made a great meadow for the cow.


I continued the birthday theme inside the card.  I normally don’t put sentiments inside the cards I make for Operation Write Home.  So I put this one up higher than I typically would in a card for my own use, to maximize the amount of writing space for the hero who chooses to send this card to someone.

Challenge recap:


Thanks for stopping by today! And congratulations to Lawnscaping for two fun years of challenges. Keep up the awesome work!

Supplies for this card:
Stamps: Critters on the Farm, Hats Off to You, Jesse’s ABCs (Lawn Fawn)
Cardstock: Certainly Celery, So Saffron, Very Vanilla, Certainly Celery and So Saffron Prints designer papers (Stampin’ Up); scrap from Ambrosia 6″ x 6″ paper pad [for the cow] (Basic Grey)
Ink: Tuxedo Black (Memento)
Other: markers (Copic); 3/4″ circle punch (Creative Memories)

Over the years, I’ve come to learn that part of crafting is realizing that sometimes you’re going to make things you think are pretty awesome, and sometimes, well, the project just doesn’t turn out as well as you’d hoped it would.

Today’s card belongs, in my opinion, to the latter scenario.  When the OWH Stars & Stamps sketch was introduced last Sunday, I looked at it and felt it was kind of fiddly with a lot of smallish pieces and parts, so I thought I’d take a pass on it. On Wednesday this week’s Inkspirational challenge was presented.  This time they have provided a photo for inspiration.  I have a difficult time with photo inspiration challenges to begin with, and this one really had me stumped.  But I peeked back at the Stars & Stamps sketch again.  The sketch made me think of a window, and the inspiration photo had a window.  I pulled out some designer paper that had flowers in colors similar to the ones in the inspiration photo, and got to work.  So here it is, all put together:


Here are the inspiration photo and the sketch:


I’m just having a hard time liking this one.  I feel like the designer papers are competing against each other too much, or something.  And I’m wondering if I should have attached the heart with dimensional adhesive to give it a little more visual separation from the background.

Oh well.  It isn’t the worst looking card I’ve ever created, LOL!  I think it’s still fine to be sent to OWH.  And maybe I’ll like my next card better.

Stamps: Short & Sweet (Stampin’ Up)
Cardstock: Riding Hood Red (SU); designer papers from Hello, Luscious 6″ x 6″ paper pad (Basic Grey)
Ink: Riding Hood Red (SU)
Other: Riding Hood Red pleated satin ribbon (SU); Heart #2 die (Sizzix)

Happy Friday! It’s time for a new Sweet ‘n Sassy Digi Challenge! This week our challenge is to create a project using a Coffee, Tea, or Hot Cocoa digital image. You don’t have to use a Sweet ‘n Sassy digital image, but we do enjoy seeing our participants use them (and you get the chance for extra perks if you do – see the Digi Challenge site for more details!). Link your card at the Sweet ‘n Sassy Digi Challenge site by midnight eastern time Thursday, January 17.

I’ve used the Cocoa’s Latte image for my card.  One of my goals for 2013 is to use up as much of my older crafting supplies as possible, so I figured I’d start on that by using some of my oldest designer paper for this card.  I also thought the dark brown background was kind of representative of coffee.  I’ve had the brown flower-shaped buttons for a while, too.  I decided to paper piece the sleeve around the coffee cup, but the rest of the image is colored with Copic markers.  (The yellow cup matches the yellow cardstock better in real life than in the photo.)  Because I’m not a coffee drinker,  I was a little stumped as to what to use for a sentiment.  So I asked my coffee-loving friend Victoria for suggestions and she came up with this one.  Thanks, V!  It’s perfect for a card to send to Operation Write Home. I just used my computer to generate it and printed it out along with the image. The layout for this card is the sketch for this week’s Freshly Made Sketches challenge.

Thanks for stopping by today!  I’m looking forward to seeing what you create for this week’s Sweet ‘n Sassy Digi Challenge!

Digital Image: Cocoa’s Latte (Sweet ‘n Sassy Stamps)
Cardstock: Pure Luxury Ivory (Gina K. Designs); Barely Banana, Spring Showers designer papers (Stampin’ Up)
Ink: printer ink
Other: buttons (SU); embroidery floss (DMC); markers (Copic)

It seems a bit out of place to be sharing a Christmas card when the Christmas season has just ended!  But last weekend when I was browsing around online, I found a challenge site called 52 {Christmas} Card Throwdown.  The idea of it is that a different challenge is presented every week, and participants must make a Christmas card fitting the challenge.  That way people can build up a supply of Christmas cards throughout the year and not have to rush around Thanksgiving and early December to get cards made for the people on their Christmas mailing list.  Well, I’m the type of person who would sit and mentally debate too long over which family would receive which card, if I had 50-ish different designs.  But I figured this would be a super way to create a stash of Christmas cards for Operation Write Home.

So, here’s what I created for this week’s challenge.  It’s a sketch challenge this time.  I stretched the sketch from a square to a rectangle, but otherwise stayed pretty true to the way the layout was drawn.  I decided to use a simple monochromatic color scheme.  The rock-n-roll technique was used to ink up the tree image, and there’s a small gold star-shaped brad attached to the top of the tree.  I really like using the confetti cardstock with these solid greens; the little speckles in the confetti coordinate with the solids and provide a little bit of visual interest compared to a solid vanilla or white background.

I’m looking forward to seeing what the upcoming 52CCT challenges will be!  Thanks for stopping by today.

All supplies for this card are from Stampin’ Up unless otherwise noted:
Stamps: Season of Joy
Cardstock: Certainly Celery, Always Artichoke, Confetti Cream, Certainly Celery Prints designer series paper
Ink: Always Artichoke, Certainly Celery
Other: Always Artichoke grosgrain ribbon; star mini brad (The Paper Studio)

Sweet ‘n Sassy Stamps just held their January release of new products, and to celebrate it, their design team posted several challenges in their forum on  Today’s card was made for the sketch challenge that was presented.  The colors for this week’s Splitcoaststampers color challenge worked perfectly with the image I chose for the sketch.  I decided to try using one of my embossing plates to add a little bit of texture to the raspberry panel.  It’s difficult to see in the photo because it’s more subtle than an embossing folder, but it’s there.  Although this card has a few layers, I think it’s clean and simple enough to qualify for this week’s ABC Challenge.

Stamps: Punny Fruits & Veggies (Sweet ‘n Sassy Stamps)
Cardstock: Soft Suede, Raspberry Ripple, Very Vanilla (Stampin’ Up)
Ink: Tuxedo Black (Memento)
Other: Premier colored pencils (Prismacolor); odorless mineral spirits (Houston Arts); Weave #1 texture plate (Ellison)

I’ve had some cardmaking momentum going the last few days so I decided I’d better ride with it before it runs out.  So I looked up some online challenges and rediscovered some older ones and found a few new ones.

I was pleased to see that CAS-ual Fridays was still very active.  It’s been over a year since the last time I participated in a CAS-ual Fridays challenge, but I decided to give it a go anyway since most of my cards tend to be either clean and simple or clean and layered.  They’re looking for thank you cards this week, and I’ve been wanting to make a few thank you cards for my Operation Write Home stash, so this helped me choose the theme for my card.

One of the new challenges just started last Wednesday.  It’s called Inkspirational, and each week they’ll present a different type of in(k)spiration to spark creativity.  The first week of each month, they’ll have a color challenge.  This time the colors are black, dark pink, and kiwi green.  So I chose Stampin’ Up’s Melon Mambo for the pink, and Lucky Limeade for the green.  I considered Kiwi Kiss but I liked the look of Lucky Limeade better with the pink.  I’m not sure why, but when I see bright colors like these put together, I tend to reach for this one particular stamp set I own that has kind of modern looking line drawings of flowers.  And I decided to use it for this challenge.  Here’s the result:

Thanks for stopping by today!

Stamps: Everyday Greetings Collection (Wordsworth)
Cardstock: Basic Black, Melon Mambo, Lucky Limeade (Stampin’ Up); Pure Luxury Ivory (Gina K. Designs)
Ink: Melon Mambo, Lucky Limeade (SU)
Other: corner rounder punch (SU)

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