Hello!  This week at CAS – Colours and Sketches Louise has drafted a very simple little sketch for us to follow.  It’s a good one for quick cards!  I’ve combined the sketch with the OWH Midweek Throwdown challenges from this week (make a masculine card) and last week (use the color scheme of red, white, blue and kraft).  Actually, I guess this card really could be gender neutral.  But I’m calling it masculine for the sake of the challenge.  😉  I’ve stretched the sketch from a square to a portrait-oriented rectangle.

I haven’t decided yet if I’ll use this card as an AnyHero card to lift the spirits of one of our military men or women stationed overseas, or to let one of them use it to send a note of thanks to someone.  Maybe I’ll just have to make a twin for it so I can have one card for each purpose. 

I hope you’ll show us what you can do with this sketch!  Link your card at the CAS – Colours and Sketches site by noon eastern time Wednesday, July 17.  Thanks for stopping by today!

Stamp: Year-Round Sentiments (Hero Arts)
Cardstock: Pure Luxury White (Gina K. Designs); Kraft, Brilliant Blue, Real Red textured (Stampin’ Up)
Ink: Brilliant Blue (SU)
Other: corner rounder punch (EK Success); Stars embossing folder (ProvoCraft)

Good morning!  This week’s CAS – Colours and Sketches challenge is a sketch challenge.  I’ve combined it with the Dynamic Duos deep oranges color challenge.  I’ve taken the liberty of adding in a mat to highlight the color challenge combo, as well as turning the sketch on its side.  The leaves are digital images that I’ve colored using a watercoloring technique.  I used Tangerine Tango on the maple leaves and Cajun Craze on the other leaves (they look more like redbud leaves to me than any other kind, but feel welcome to leave me a comment to correct me if I’m wrong).  However, once they dried, they all ended up looking pretty similar in color.  Oh well.  After all the fussy cutting was done, it still made a nice autumn-looking card for Operation Write Home.  The maple leaf on the left has a cardstock shim under it, and the maple leaf on the right is adhered with pop dots, to give a little bit of dimension to the card.


Thanks for stopping by today!  I hope you’ll join us over at CAS – Colours and Sketches with your own take on this sketch!  You have until noon eastern time Wednesday, July 3 to link your card at the challenge website.

Digital Images: Autumn Leaves (Sweet ‘n Sassy Stamps)
Sentiment Stamp: Year Round Sentiments (Hero Arts)
Cardstock: Tangerine Tango, Cajun Craze, Naturals Ivory (Stampin’ Up); Solar White (Neenah) [for the leaves]
Ink: printer ink; Tangerine Tango (SU)
Other: Tangerine Tango and Cajun Craze ink refills, dimensionals (SU)

My mom just celebrated her birthday, and today I’m sharing the card my family gave her.  I used the CAS – Colours and Sketches double challenge #27 as my inspiration for the layout and color scheme.  It’s been a long time since I’ve made a square card, so it was nice to work with that smaller size for something a little different (the card is 4.25″ square).  The card base is textured cardstock, but the texture unfortunately doesn’t show well in the photo.  For the darkest flowers, I inked the stamp with my red marker, then pulled off a bit of the ink with a tissue, and then ran the brush tip of the marker against the edges of the rubber to add a bit more darkness around the edges of the flower.  The lighter flowers are just second and third generation stampings – where I stamped the image again without reinking the stamp.  I hope that still keeps the card in qualification for the color part of the challenge.  For the small squares, I stamped the red flourish on white cardstock.  The white still looked a bit too bright against the card base, so I sponged some ink in the same color as the card base to tone it down.


I’m not going to embarrass my mom by putting her picture on here, but she said that her family made her birthday the best one she’s had.  I hope she has many more happy years!

Stamps: A Real Wild Poppy (Hero Arts); Filigree and It’s Your Birthday (Stampin’ Up)
Cardstock: Sahara Sand textured, Always Artichoke, Whisper White (SU)
Ink: Real Red, Sahara Sand (SU)
Other: Real Red and Always Artichoke markers (SU); standard circle and petite scalloped circle Nestabilities dies (Spellbinders); sponge

Wow – it’s June already!  The year really seems to be going by quickly.

Since it’s the first Saturday of the month, it’s time for a sketch challenge at 52 {Christmas} Card Throwdown.  I’ve stretched the layout from a square into a rectangle.  Instead of circles, I thought I’d try snowflakes.  I’ve had this snowflake embossing die for a while and it was calling out to be used.  Even though the embossing adds some texture and dimension, the card is still flat enough to be easily mailed, so it’ll be a good one to add to the stash I’m creating for Operation Write Home. The strip of designer paper was a scrap from a previous card.  After finding a cardstock color that matched it pretty well, I decided to give the card a pop of color with the cherry red.

I hope you’ll go see what the rest of the design team did with this sketch, and that you’ll be inspired to use it to make a Christmas card of your own!  Be sure to share it at the 52{C}CT site by 1:00 p.m. eastern time Friday, June 7.  Thanks for stopping by today!

Stamps: More Merry Messages (Stampin’ Up); Snowmen and Snowflakes (Hero Arts)
Cardstock: Sage Shadow, Cherry Cobbler, Naturals White (SU); designer paper from Aspen Frost 6″ x 6″ paper pad (Basic Grey)
Ink: Cherry Cobbler (SU)
Other: Snowflake Embosslits die (Sizzix); small scallop border die (Papertrey Ink)

I have two very simple, very similar cards today that combine several different challenges.  The colors come from CAS – Colours and Sketches challenge #23; although it may look like I’ve used black, it’s really Midnight Muse, a dark blue.  The “missing you” theme is for the May Operation Write Home/Our Daily Bread Designs challenge, which is also the first of Operation Write Home’s NSD 2013 Virtual Card Making Party challenges.   Having two cards ties into the current OWH Midweek Throwdown – creating “his and hers” cards.

I have to admit it felt good to use some of my Tangerine Tango cardstock!  I have such a hard time using that color.  Many thanks to the CAS – Colours and Sketches girls for making me push out of my comfort zone with it!

Stamps: The Art of Life (Stampin’ Up); Right at Home (Hero Arts)
Cardstock: Midnight Muse, Tangerine Tango, So Saffron (SU); Pure Luxury Ivory (Gina K. Designs)
Ink: Midnight Muse, Tangerine Tango, So Saffron (SU)

This week the girls over at Inkspirational have provided a card to “CASE” as the inspiration piece.  Over the years I’ve come across several different definitions for “CASE”, but my favorite is “Copy And Selectively Edit” – which means, to me, to copy some of the elements of the original piece but change some of the other things.

I really liked the clean, simple layout of the card provided in the Inkspirational prompt.  I actually made several cards with it because it was a fantastic way to get some last minute cards made for the box I’m sending to Operation Write Home.  I discovered that using this layout, I can quickly create three cards from just two sheets of cardstock (plus a few scraps for the sentiment panels).  For the sake of brevity, though, I’m sharing only two of the cards in this blog post.

First is a card that follows the prompt card pretty closely.  I’ve used different stamps and colors, and my sentiment panel is an oval rather than a circle, and I didn’t use textured cardstock for the card base.  But otherwise you can definitely tell that the original card provided inspiration for mine.

For my second card, I used a different ink color, and I turned the layout on its side:



When I started to attach the image panels to the card bases, I felt like they disappeared into the bases.  I added some sponging to the edges of the image panel on one card (not shown here) but wasn’t really loving the look when the card was all put together.  So for the two cards shown here, I used the scrap pieces of cardstock from cutting down the image panels to create a shim to put underneath each corner of the image panel.  This raises the image panel up off the card a bit and gives it a bit more definition, but not so much as using dimensional adhesive would.

But now I’d better get back to finishing up that box of cards for OWH.  Thanks for stopping by today!

Supplies for the Father’s Day card:
Stamps: Lovely As a Tree (Stampin’ Up); Dream Big (Lizzie Anne Designs)
Cardstock: Naturals White (SU)
Ink: True Thyme (SU)
Other: petite ovals Nestabilities die (Spellbinders)

Supplies for the Thank You card:
Stamps: Lovely As a Tree (Stampin’ Up); Year Round Sentiments (Hero Arts)
Cardstock: Naturals White (SU)
Ink: Soft Suede (SU)
Other: petite ovals Nestabilities die (Spellbinders)

I’m honored and excited to be this week’s sample maker for the Operation Write Home Stars and Stamps Sketch Challenge! If you haven’t joined in the OWH/Our Daily Bread Designs challenge for the month of March yet, this sketch is perfect for it.

I’ve made two sample cards with this sketch.  On the first card, I’ve created an extra layer so that the ribbon could be wrapped around to the back of it.  I chose to use a simple knot bow to help keep the card USPS-machine-friendly. But other than that, I followed the sketch pretty closely.  It felt good to use two of my older designer papers for this card. The sentiment is from one of the OWH/Hero Arts clear stamp sets.

The second card is a one-layer card.  I decided to use a border stamp to create the scalloped elements.  I will admit that even after 10 years of stamping regularly, I still get nervous about stamping on one-layer cards!  I added another border stamp, which looks a lot like faux stitching, between the scalloped borders.  I stamped that in silver, and the ink glared a little on the right side of the photo.  Sorry about that.  I didn’t have anything handy to use as a stamp positioner imaging sheet for the border stamps, so I had to just eyeball getting them straight. The stitching one is a little bit off but I guess that just adds to the handmade feel of the card. Instead of a ribbon and bow, I used a scrap strip of silver metallic paper for the vertical stripe part of the sketch.  I created a faux prize blue ribbon to take the place of the bow.  Even though it’s attached with dimensional adhesive, it still lies flatter than a ribbon bow would.  To accommodate the length of the “blue ribbon”, I moved the horizontal elements up higher on the card, keeping in mind the The Rule of Thirds as discussed in March OWH Design Bootcamp segment.   The deadline for sending Father’s Day cards to the OWH shippers is coming up on April 30, so I’m starting to get some cards made to be prepared for that.

Here’s what the actual sketch looks like:

So now it’s your turn! I’d love to see what you can make with this sketch. Be sure to link your creations on the OWH Stars and Stamps blog. Thanks for stopping by today!

Supplies for the Thinking of You card:
Stamps: Year Round Sentiments (Hero Arts)
Cardstock: Bashful Blue, Certainly Celery, Petal Patch designer series papers (Stampin’ Up)
Ink: Chocolate Chip (SU)
Other: Certainly Celery twill ribbon (SU); scalloped border die (Papertrey Ink)

Supplies for the Dad card:
Stamps: Quinn’s ABCs (Lawn Fawn); Riveting (Stampin’ Up)
Cardstock: Pure Luxury White (Gina K. Designs); Brilliant Blue, Brushed Silver (SU)
Ink: Brilliant Blue (SU); silver (ColorBox)
Other: standard circle and big scalloped circle Nestabilities dies (Spellbinders)

Here’s a very quick and easy one-layer card I made with this week’s Dynamic Duos colors of soft yellow and black.  I masked a panel with sticky notes and sponged So Saffron ink to define it.  Then I stamped the image and the sentiment. And in just a few minutes, I had another card to add to my Operation Write Home stash.

Dynamic Duos offered a “dessert option” of adding ribbon, but I felt that would interfere with the simplicity of this design.

This week’s ABC Challenge is “Bring on the Flowers”.  I know some people would debate whether dandelions are flowers or weeds, LOL, but I’ll side with the “flowers” side of that issue and enter this card for the challenge.

Thanks for stopping by today!  It’s Thursday… the weekend is almost here, hooray!  😉

Stamps: Make a Wish (Sweet ‘n Sassy Stamps); Year Round Sentiments (Hero Arts)
Cardstock: Pure Luxury Ivory (Gina K. Designs)
Ink: So Saffron (Stampin’ Up); Tuxedo Black (Memento)
Other: sponge

It’s that time of year when I start looking forward to the flowers blooming again.  (Although depending on which weather forecast you prefer, my area is in for either lots of rain, or up to 16 inches of snow tonight and tomorrow!)  This week’s Dynamic Duos color challenge made me think of daffodils – I guess partly because one of the colors has the word “daffodil” in its name.  My own daffodils have about 5 inches of foliage sprouting up from the ground.  Since that isn’t enough to enjoy, I decided to create some flowers with my stamps today.  I used the Inkspirational challenge #9 sketch for the layout of this card.



Thanks for stopping by today!

Stamps: Three Daffodils (Hero Arts); Filigree, Three Little Words (Stampin’ Up)
Cardstock: Daffodil Delight, Garden Green (SU); Pure Luxury White (Gina K. Designs)
Ink: Garden Green (SU); Tuxedo Black (Memento)
Other: markers (Copic); half pearls (KaiserCraft)

fresh flowers

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Mar 042013

OK, I’ll admit it – large blank panels on card sketches tend to intimidate me.  I am never sure how to fill up the space.  So that’s why it took me a while to figure out what to do with Freshly Made Sketch #75.  I finally decided I’d use this large floral stamp and make a spring-y card to add to the box I’ll be sending to Operation Write Home at the end of the month. I did take the liberty of turning the sketch on its side.

Stamps: Flower Field (Sweet ‘n Sassy Stamps); Thank You Note (Hero Arts)
Cardstock: Bashful Blue (Stampin’ Up); Pure Luxury White (Gina K. Designs)
Ink: Certainly Celery, Bashful Blue (SU)
Other: markers (Copic); Certainly Celery satin ribbon (SU)

Here’s what I’ve come up with for the current Inkspirational challenge.  They provided a photo for inspiration, and I took it pretty literally with the bouquet and the colors.  I was using the CAS Colours and Sketches layout, but now that I’ve taken the photo I realized I forgot to add a flower behind the right side of the main image panel. Ooops!  I didn’t have any thank you cards yet for the box of cards I’m putting together for Operation Write Home, so that’s how I chose the sentiment.

Operation Write Home held a Virtual Card Making Party last weekend, with 10 different challenges to complete by the beginning of next week. I hadn’t had the chance to really focus on completing the challenges yet, but I see that this card works for challenge #10 – to use something glitzy that isn’t glitter. I think the rhinestones fit into that category. So maybe I’ll just do the rest of the challenges in reverse order now, LOL! 🙂

Stamps: Watercolor Garden II (Stampin’ Up); Year Round Sentiments (Hero Arts)
Cardstock: Pure Luxury White (Gina K. Designs); Real Red, Melon Mambo, Tangerine Tango (SU)
Ink: Wild Wasabi, Real Red (SU)
Other: 5-Petal Flower punch, Mixed Bouquet punch (SU); rhinestones (Bazzill)

It took me a while to figure out what to do with this week’s sketch challenge at 52 {Christmas} Card Throwdown.  I couldn’t decide what to do for the small diamond shapes.  Finally I remembered these small snowman stamps that I’d bought myself for Christmas several years ago.  (You know how that goes… your husband says something like “I don’t know what to get you for Christmas, so just go buy yourself something you like and pretend it’s from me.”  LOL)  They turned out to be just the perfect size!  I embellished the sentiment panel with some snowflakes from the same stamp set, but stamped those off once to get the lighter shade of purple.  I wanted them lighter so they wouldn’t compete with the sentiment.  The color scheme comes from this week’s CAS – Colours and Sketches challenge.  It’s weird – as hard a time I had using purple and silver a few weeks ago for a challenge, I had no problems using these colors and for snowmen, at that!  The snowflake eyelets are old; I bought them off of eBay years ago when eyelets were really popular.  They started out white, but I colored them with a Copic marker in an attempt to make them match the ivory cardstock better.  Oddly, they ended up with a bit of a purplish tint that goes along with the rest of the color scheme.


I’ll concede that where the CAS – Colours and Sketches challenge is concerned, my card is probably more like “clean and layered” than “clean and simple”.  But the important two things are that I had fun creating it, and that now I have another Christmas card for the stash I’m building up for Operation Write Home.

Stamps: Snowmen & Snowflakes (Hero Arts); Holiday Baubles (Sweet ‘n Sassy Stamps)
Cardstock: Pure Luxury Ivory (Gina K. Designs); Perfect Plum, Kraft (Stampin’ Up)
Ink: Perfect Plum (SU)
Other: Snowflakes embossing folder (Sizzix); square punches (EK Success); snowflake eyelets (source unknown)

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)

year-end closeout

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Dec 312012

Hello!  I hope all of my blog visitors have had a wonderful, joyous holiday season, no matter whether you celebrate Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa, or something else.

I took a little hiatus from crafting over the holidays, and now I’m trying to get back into the swing of things.  I used the mirror image of the latest Freshly Made Sketch for the layout, although I didn’t get the card finished in time for me to enter it into the challenge.  Oh well.  I decided to go with a brown color scheme for the bunny image.  The current OWH Midweek Throwdown challenge is calling for “miss you” cards, so that helped determine the sentiment I chose.

Here’s wishing you all the best in 2013!  Thanks for visiting with me throughout the year.

Supplies for today’s card:
Digital Image: Contemplative Bunny (Amber Ink)
Sentiment Stamp: Year Round Sentiments (Hero Arts)
Cardstock: Kraft (Stampin’ Up); Solar White (Neenah); designer papers from Pyrus 6″ x 6″ paper pad (Basic Grey)
Ink: printer ink; Tuxedo Black (Memento)
Other: petite oval Nestabilities dies (Spellbinders); Browns twine (Queen & Co.)

Today’s card combines the current Dynamic Duos challenge with the current Splitcoaststampers Clean And Simple challenge.  For the CAS challenge of using blocks of color, I stamped my Cajun Craze ink cube directly onto the cardstock.  Because the ink cube is a little on the dry side, it left a nice imprint of the woven surface of the ink pad rather than a completely solid block of color.  Then I used Always Artichoke to stamp the leaves and the sentiment.  I added a simple mat to give definition to the layers, and ta-da: a quick and easy card that will be totally suitable for Operation Write Home.

Supplies for this card:
Stamps: Real Leaves, Right at Home (Hero Arts)
Cardstock: Confetti Cream, Cajun Craze (Stampin’ Up)
Ink: Cajun Crazy, Always Artichoke (SU)

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