Thursday, June 27, 2013

The Case Study Grand Slam!


For the first time ever, I got to play along with all four challenges at Case Study, showcasing the same muse - Lisa Spangler.  As I may have gushed in my three other posts, I just love Lisa.  And this challenge (#147) may have been my favourite to case of all!

Here's Lisa's card:

And here's mine:

This was a labour of love.  Step 1: I watercoloured each "square" separately.  The square actually the frame from Paper Smooches Vogue Abode.  Step 2: I used the same stamp, and stamped it repeatedly to create the background (it's not perfect, but I kinda like it that way!).  Step 3: I cut out each square and pasted one in each square.  Step four: stamp and emboss the speech bubble and sentiment, and add a little heart.  It did take me a long time to make it, but I'm really happy that I persevered.

That's it for me today!
I've signed up for the Summer Camp Online class (my first online class - and I'm quite excited!).  I'm hoping to play along with the two pre-course challenges over the next couple of days, so hopefully see you again really soon!

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

For the Love of Cows


I mentioned in a previous post that my niece is having a birthday in July, and this is the card that I made for her.  But, the other day I found out that she is now in love with cows!  Well, what's an Auntie to do?  Make another card with a cow on it, of course!  I know she would have loved the other one with the sweet hamster on it, but I couldn't resist making a cow card for her!  And I know I can find another good home for that huggable hamster!

I used a couple of challenges to put this card together.  I played along with Cas-ual Fridays for the first time ever (I know, how did THAT take so long?!) and I also stumbled upon a new little challenge that Lisa Arana is hosting on her blog and wanted to play along :)  It's called Wanna Sketch?  (love that!).

The challenges are:



And here's my niece's new card:

Pretty straight forward on this one.  I used a couple of things I had sitting on my desk - the heart balloon which I had used on yesterday's card, and the embossed paper that I actually used on my niece's original card.  Sentiment is Paper Smooches (my niece has a fabulous sense of humour, and I think she's going to love the "moo").  Cow is PS as well.  I used Copics to colour the banner background and the cow's nose.  The heart is stamped in a similar coloured ink and covered in glossy accents.  Little secret - the picture taken on an angle above, was purposely taken at THAT angle.  From the other side, all you can see is a foam square mess when you look at it sideways!!  Oh well ;)

Hope you have a good day!!

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Casing one of my All Time FAVES!


I had a chance to play along with this week's CASE Study Challenge #146, casing the amazing, talented, just plain awesome Lisa Spangler!

Here is Lisa's fabulous card:

And here's mine:

I just love casing these superstars of the card making world.  They stretch me to make cards and use colours that I would probably never put together on my own.  But when I do, I just love the combinations. 

I used another big mish mash of products on this one.  The background hearts and the butterfly are old SU! (more salvaged from the purge of a few weeks ago!).  The Happy Birthday and the "YOU" come from Hero Arts/Studio Calico, the "slashes" come from the TAWS Tag Alongs set and the fabulous, amazing...comes from Casual Fridays Stamps (Truth Is set).  I also used some liquid pearls, which I haven't used for a long time, but I thought they were just the right colour and embellishment to add to this card.  I coloured the butterfly with copics, fussy cut it out and covered the whole thing in glossy accents, which really drew out the colour and gave it some shine!  Doodled a little border and called it done!

That's it for me today.  I'm off to take my niece on a little shopping trip :)
Thank you SO much for visiting, and for all your sweet comments - they ALWAYS put a huge smile on my face!

Sunday, June 23, 2013

Jam Packed Card


Just a little post tonight with a challenge-less card I made.  I tried to work this one into a challenge, but alas, I gave up.  I think it's the sentiments fault!  Ha ha!  I really wanted to say two things on this card and I found that I had to work the rest of the card around the words.  Which was okay, and I just started playing.  I think I may have overcrowded the card and added a few too many elements, and I don't think it's really my style, but I think it's sweet nonetheless.

Here it is:

I made it for a very kind, sweet, generous, thoughtful lady who I met up with on Friday.  She shared with me that a very close friend of hers had just passed away from a heart attack - at the age of 31.  Gut-wrenching.  Despite her sadness, and having so much to deal with, she mentioned that she was cooking dinner, and asked if I would like to come.  She knew that my husband was out of town and didn't want me to be alone.  Such an angel.  I had made other plans, so I couldn't make it, but I wanted to send her a little note, to let her know how sorry I am for her loss, and to let her know what a special person she is!

Hope it brings a smile to her face!
Have a good night, and hopefully see you tomorrow!

Friday, June 21, 2013



The challenges du jour: Play Date Cafe #187 and CAS(E) this Sketch #33.  And I went totally clean and simple on this one.  You know why?!!!  Because I actually *read* the definition of CAS the other day.  Yup, just now!  All this time, I had *assumed* (I should know better!) CAS was really anything that wasn't overly layered or bulky, that wasn't adorned with a lot of big bows, flowers and other embellishments.  No bulk ='d CAS to me!  But nope!  I read this specific definition over at Less is More:

Clean & Simple: A design of card with clean lines, minimal elements, areas of white space and few or no embellishments.
White Space: An area of the card which has no image, layer or embellishment.  This can be any colour dependent upon the colour of the card blank.
OLC One Layer Card: One piece of card folded in half with no additional layers and minimal embellishments, where the image is stamped or printed directly onto the cardstock.

Got it!

So here are the challenges:

And here's my CAS card that I think meets the definition!

Just noticing now that my "jade" is much more aqua looking.  Obviously my definition of jade was about as accurate as my definition of CAS!!  Ha ha!  But I think I actually stayed true to the proper definition of CAS on this one!  There's a lot more white space than I'm used to, but I think I'm okay with it!  My sweet friend Carol made a card with a lot of white space yesterday, which I adored.  So with that inspiration in my pocket, I went to work!  This card is a combo of TAWS (the label style background coloured in jade aqua!), Paper Smooches (that oh so sweet little birdie and the "there"), and Lawn Fawn (the little heart and the hey).  I am just loving this LF alphabet set.  I was totally inspired by Elise to buy them, and so glad I did!

Well, I'm heading out for the afternoon now - I want to beat the Friday rush hour traffic, and if I don't leave now, I could be stuck in it for an hour or so - yuck!

Hope you're having a fabulous day!

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

An Idiot's Moment...!


Well, I *thought* I'd played along with the Paper Smooches colour challenge for this week...but nope!  I got the colours all wrong!!!

To give you an idea of how this happened, I should give you a little insight into how I play along with these challenges.  It all starts like this:  my craft room is upstairs, and my computer is downstairs (it's a laptop, but I generally just keep it plugged in at the kitchen "station").  So, every few days, I look at what's "out there" for challenges, and I quickly jot down the sketch or the colour theme or what have you, on a ripped up, scrap piece of paper.  Then I bring my paper upstairs to my craft room, and see what inspires me.  Well this week, I jotted down both the Paper Smooches and the Colour Q challenge colours.  So today, I decided to work with the *Paper Smooches* colour challenge.  I struggled with it, because I have been really trying hard lately to experiment with all of my supplies, so when it came to using just one company's product, I was definitely feeling challenged!  But I came up with something I liked in the end.

I came downstairs to photograph it, but before I did, I just quickly jumped on the SPARKS page - only to find I'd used the wrong colours!  After all that fussing and mussing to use just PS products, I hadn't even used the right colours!  I'd looked at the wrong challenge on my little scrap piece of paper!  (funny though, because the colours in both challenges had some similarities).  Well, I thought, I'll just enter it into the Colour Q challenge instead.  But guess what - that challenge had closed!  (And really, I was kinda off on the colours there too!!!). 

Oh well, on the bright side, I've got a thank you card for our sweet yoga instructor (my husband and I take class together - it was like pulling teeth to get him to come, but once he started he has become quite enamoured with it (although I'm not sure he'd admit it!)).  My favourite thing about this card is the sentiment.  I love how it turned out kind of artsy looking!  I just used a very fine tipped black pen to trace around the letters and got a cool effect!

Enough blabbering (and whining!) - here's the card!

And for a chuckle, here are the SPARKS and Colour Q challenge colours:

Thanks for checking in to have a look!
Hope you have a fabulous day!

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

For a Sweet Birthday Girl!


My sweet little niece will be turning 11 in July.  I used the CAS(E) this Sketch #32 challenge to create her card!  At first I was puzzled by this sketch.  I couldn't seem to get the balance just right.  But with a little playing and experimenting, I think I found just the card I was looking for.  I hope my niece will really like it :)

Here's the sketch:

And here's my card:

My style seems to be all over the map these days!  Back to clean and simple on this one.  I ended up rotating the sketch clockwise and went to work from there.  I am just in love with that little hamster from Paper Smooches.  The background is Paper Smooches as well, I think from the Geographic set.  The sentiment is Avery Elle and the balloons are from yet another old set that I salvaged in my purge - they are from Stampin Up.  The background behind the circle is also from old, salvaged supplies.  I used a Stampin Up background stamp for the textured blue, and I used an extremely old embossing template to "impress" the flowers.  This was old-school dry embossing with a stylus - I don't have an embossing/die cutting machine!!  Although I have been thinking for a while now that I really do need to get one!

Hope you like it, and hopefully my niece will too!
Have a sweet day!

Monday, June 17, 2013

Some Good News!


We just found out today that a very good friend of ours got a new job!  And of course I wanted to make him a card.  He is just one of the nicest guys I know, and I am just so excited about this new path he is embarking on. 

No challenge today.  Creating a guys's card, is challenge enough for me! 

Have a peek!

I just went for it with this card, and was really happy with the results.  It's a big mish mash of different products, and I even tried watercolouring the background again.  If you have any questions at all about products, let me know and I'll let you know :)

Hope you are having a fabulous day!

Sunday, June 16, 2013

Summer Weddings


I decided to combine two challenges into one...again!  As I mentioned in my last post, it was a rare occasion for me to combine challenges before.  Now it is my go-to way to create!  I like to combine colour challenges with sketch challenges for the most part - just seems to make sense!  I'm not sure how I didn't "get" this before!  Today's card is a slightly different combo - it's a CASE challenge and a colour challenge.  I'm casing the oh-so-talented Lisa Spangler's card for Case Study #145 and I combined that with The Play Date Cafe Colour Splash.

Here are the challenges:

And my card:

The colour turned out a bit more "purply" than I had intended, but I thought that might be okay because the nectarines in the PDC challenge picture do range in hue from pinkish to purplish.  The Case Study inspiration came from both Lisa's muse card, and from her re-take.  They are both just so beautiful!

Most of the images I used are from a couple of Hero Arts/Studio Calico sets, but I also used a Jane's Doodle heart in the centre of the hexigon and the polka dots in the background are from Paper Smooches.  I used brads in place of enamel dots, because I don't have any...yet!  (I'm alwaaays late on the trend scene!).  But I think the magic in this card comes from the background paint.  I found some very old "Twinkling H2O" paints while I was purging my craft room a few weeks ago.  They have a little "built-in" shimmer and just look so pretty.  I'm so glad I rediscovered them in the purge!

I've got a couple of weddings to go to during the summer, so one out of two cards done - CHECK!

Thanks as always for coming by to see me!
And Happy Father's Day!

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Ding Ding


Just a quick little post for today.  I got to play along with two challenges that I combined into one card!  I seem to be doing the combo deal more and more these days!  This time, iiiin the colour corner, is the awesome trio of colours, teal, magenta and grey from the Play Date Cafe challenge #185!!!  And iiiiin the sketch corner, is the fabulous, always fun CAS(E) this Sketch # 31.  DING DING!!  (okay, I'm getting a little carried away!).

Here are the colours and the sketch:

And here's my card:

I had been wanting to create a background with that hexigon stamp (Hero Arts Studio Calico) and I love grey for a background. It's soft yet it makes its presence known!  And add a punch of teal and magenta - such a pretty colour combo!  The flowers (which are paper pieced) and the sentiment in magenta are from the Truth Is set from Cas-ual Fridays Stamps (so versatile!).   The "you are" sentiment is from Paper Smooches.  The heart is a wooden veneer from Studio Calico that I inked magenta to match, and the little bow on the heart is just white twine which I inked up in grey.  I may have gone a little crazy with the splatters on this one too!  But I do love my splatters!!

That's it for me today!
Thank you so much for stopping in for a visit!!

Sunday, June 09, 2013

And Now for Something Totally Different...


I decided to play along with Case Study Challenge #144 today.  Do you know who the Case Study Muse is this month??  Have you heard??!!  It is the aaahhhh-MAZING Lisa Spangler!  She is one of my all-time favourites.  I just love her style SO much, her creativity is incredibly inspiring and she just seems like SUCH good person. 

Here is the inspiration card:

And my interpretation:

I wanted to challenge myself to do something different, and ended up with something A LOT different from my regular style!  Yup, I attempted using watercolours!  I've tried and failed before, but armed with Lisa's inspiration, I was bound and determined to try again.  I used similar colours in Lisa's paint strokes in the background - they're quite light, so hopefully you can see them in the photo.  Then I pulled out some more old Stampin Up stamps that I salvaged from my recent purge and added the images.  The flowers are also watercoloured.  Finished it off with sentiments from Studio Calico (Hello There) and Paper Smooches (friend) and the little bow.

I know I have a long way to go in improving my watercolouring skills, but instead of a fail, I'll allow myself a pass for this one!!!

Thank you so much for coming by to see me!
Have a good day!

Saturday, June 08, 2013

Proud as a Peacock


Last night I had a chance to play along with two challenges that I combined into one card.  I used the sketch from Freshly Made Sketches #89, and I used the colours from the ColourQ #192.  I finished it just a little too late, and the lighting was poor.  So I opted to hold off until this morning to post in hopes of getting a decent (a relative term!) photograph of the card.

Here are the sketch and the colours:

And here's the card:

For the sketch, I rotated it counter-clockwise and decided to replace the banners with peacock feathers.  Pretty much everything on the card is Paper Smooches, with the exception of the little itty bitty heart, which is from Lawn Fawn. 

This is a card for my stash.  Mostly when I create a card, I am inspired (along with the challenges!) by the person I am making it for.  But in this case, I was inspired by the idea of using the peacock feathers with a "proud" as a peacock sentiment, and just ran with it.  So many people in my life make me proud everyday though, so I'm sure this one won't last too long in the stash!

Hope you have a good day!
I feel like another challenge might be in the "cards" for me again today!!!
Hopefully see you again tomorrow :)

Thursday, June 06, 2013

Birthday Boy


I've got a little card here that I made for the Simon Says Stamp challenge this week AND for my nephew's 14th birthday coming up in June!  The theme for this week's challenge was anything masculine - perfect for this! 

My nephew is quite an incredible artist, he takes my breath away with the things he can create.  So I wanted to make him a card that had a bit of artistic flare.  Got a little messy with this one, but I kind of think it fits the bill.

Have a look:

I just used some water based markers directly on the 1 and the 4 stamps (Paper Smooches, Digits set), flicked a little water on them to get the colours to run into each other, and stamped them onto white card stock.  (I was second guessing throwing the pink/magenta into the mix - his is quite a boys boy. But being an artist, I know he embraces all the colours, so I think he'll be okay with it!).  After I cut the numbers out, I outlined them in a very thin tipped black pen.  I used the same black pen to draw a frame around the card base.  Then I went splatter crazy.  I used the same colours that I used on the 14 diluted in water, and then added a squirt of Ranger Dylusions ink spray in vibrant turquoise and black.  Then I adhered the crimped black banner, and the 14.  Finished it off with the sentiment from Paper smooches.

It was a lot of fun to make this card!  I'm really enjoying trying new techniques!

Hope you like it!  And hope to see you again tomorrow!

Wednesday, June 05, 2013

Retro Sketches ~ Retro Stamp!


Retro Sketches 66 is the challenge du jour!  I wanted to do something a little different so that I could incorporate an old stamp into the design as the focal point.  It's an old Stampin Up stamp that I just love, and when I was cleaning/purging my craft supplies last week, I made a mental note to use it, and soon.  It really is beautiful.  When I saw the Retro Sketch for this week, I thought "yeah, I can make this work!"

Here's the sketch:

And here's how I used it:

I thought that I could use it to replace the main panel, so that's just what I did.  I used my copics to colour all three layers.   My initial idea was to water colour the flower, after seeing Jennifer McGuire doing a video on it.  But, I quickly realized that I needed MUCH more practice with my water colouring before I could come up with something even somewhat presentable!  So that first effort went in the recycling bin, and I resorted to my copics, which I'm slightly more comfortable using.  The back panel came about just from plucking out some old scrap pieces of paper, added some chevrons (loving my TAWS Tag Along chevrons), the banner, sentiment and heart from Studio Calico and she was all done!

I made this for one of my co-workers (there have been lots of card-making occasions for my sweet friends there of late!) who just got a position that she had been trying so hard for.  I was just so happy for her, so a congrats (or in this case, a "way to go") card was the least I could do to show her how thrilled I am!

Okay, better buzz off - hope to post again tomorrow :)
Have a fantastic day!!

Monday, June 03, 2013

Soft Sympathy


Yesterday was Dynamic Duo #55 Day,with a side of Unscripted Sketches #213!  I used the two challenges to create a sympathy card for a good friend of mine whose Aunt passed away recently.  Just wanted her to know I was thinking of her.  This week's Dynamic Duo colour combination was so pretty.  The softness of it really helped set the "mood" for condolences.  Having said that, I have to say, this challenge is a toughie!  Being limited to two colours is, well, limiting!  Considering the clean and simple approach I took, you would think I had this whipped up in 10 minutes flat!  NOPE!  Felt like it took 10 hours!  Ha ha!  Using the Unscripted Sketch to compliment the Duo was definitely helpful :)

Here are the sketch and the colour combo:

And here's the card:

I used my Cas-ual Fridays stamp set, Truth Is, to create the background.  My stamp positioner was the not-so-secret weapon I used to make sure I lined the images up as evenly as I could.  I left three blank spots and filled them with hearts from my new Jane's Doodles set called Sweet Heart (the little heart is from the same set).  The sentiment is from the Paper Smooches Sentiment Sampler set.  The twine is actually white twine that I ran through my mauve ink pad a few times, to match the colour of the background.  I hadn't done this before, and it was very easy to do!

I'm off to mail the card, and along with a few others I'm sending out.
Hope you have a fantastic day!

Sunday, June 02, 2013

Birds on the Brain


Yesterday, I had a lot of "me" time.  And I loooooove my me time!  Because more times than not, that means card making time!  And of course, I played along with a challenge (I seem lost without them!).  I recently found Freshly Made Sketches.  Okay, obviously I am waaaay behind, with this being a  new discovery for me - they are already on challenge #88!!  But I'm glad that I stumbled upon it at last!

Here's the sketch for this week:

And here's my take:

I am just in LOVE with the Bird Brain set from TAWS.  The birds are crazy adorable and so fun!  I knew I wanted to use this bird from the set, so the sketch and the little guy were my starting points for the card.  Kept it pretty much true to the sketch, but switched it up just a little bit by using the sentiment to create the long, horizontal panel spanning the card.  I also loved that this sketched called for a scalloped border - I haven't done that in ages!  Added some glossy accents to the nose (and of course dipped my thumb in it before it had dried!), a few embellishments, and the card was done.

I'm going to give this to a sweet, sweet lady whom I work with - she and another oh so sweet co-worker recently bought me a gift certificate for the spa!!!  Amazing, huh?!  I just went an enjoyed a massage last week, and I wanted to make them something that let them know just how much I appreciate what they did for me.  It was just so incredibly kind.  I'm giving the other lady this card that I made a few weeks ago - I liked that they both had birds on them :)

That's it for me today - thank you for dropping in!!
Hope to see you again tomorrow!