Thursday, August 30, 2012

New Challenge Blog Debuts 9/2/2012

Have you heard the news? 

There is a new challenge blog on the Internet - Anything But A Card

I've been looking forward to seeing what the design team comes up with since I like to make anything but a card projects. Go check them out at ABAC !!!!

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Fiskars Fuse Contest Entry 2

This is the photo I am submitting to the contest


I used the butterfly die cut from the insert in Creating Keepsakes magazine as a dimensional embellishment for my framed butterfly photos project.

Cut out the butterfly portion of the die cut and embellish as desired. I watercolored, sprayed with glittery mist, added wire antennae, then slightly bent the wings up before mounting to the finished project with dimensional adhesive dots.

Print out saying and adhere to colored card stock, embellish as desired. I used colored rhinestone accents glued along the scallop punched edge.

Print out photos, trim and attach to decorative papers with dimensional adhesive dots. 

The Black decorative paper background is made by heat embossing clear embossing powder over Jumbo Butterfly Wheel (Stampin' Up!).

The frame is something I bought at a church rummage sale years ago - and broke as I was taking it out of my car. I kept it , determined to repair it and make something of it someday. I removed the hooks, sanded, filled the holes, painted. I did not have new glass cut since the project has dimension to it.
The black background paper has clear heat embossed butterflies.
I lightly sponged orange ink around the edges of the white card stock.
The photos are some that I took myself in my flower gardens.

Thanks for looking and if you would, take the time to look at all of the entries in the contest on the Fiskars facebook page. Of course all votes (five per day per email address) are much appreciated ! Voting starts September 3rd and ends September 16th. THANK YOU !


Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Fiskars Fuse Contest Entry 1

The latest issue of Creating Keepsakes magazine had an insert with two die cuts in it, challenging crafters to use them and post their creations for a chance to win the new Fuse die cut machine from Fiskars. I took that challenge and here is one of my projects using the die exactly as it came. I'll post the other tomorrow.

Unfortunately I did not take step by step photos nor do I have patterns. I will try to explain how I made it. 

This is the photo I posted to the contest page,


I used an empty ribbon spool as my base. Cover the bottom hole with heavy duty tape, fill with craft pellets, sand, etc to weight it down then tape over the top hole. Paint the inside and edges with acrylic craft paint. You could wrap a strip of decorative paper on the inside rather than paint it.

Lightly sand the bottom of the spool to rough up the slick surface so adhesive will stick better; glue on a piece of felt or card stock.

Lightly sand the top of the spool to remove the slick finish before adhering embellishments. I used a large scallop circle die cut and made an accordion fold flower out of shimmery paper. Be sure to find the center of each item as well as the tape covering the hole on the spool. Punch a hole in each for the dowel rod to fit snugly into before gluing the pieces to the spool.

The "faux ribbon" was created by printing a saying onto a scrap of drafting vellum, trimming and gluing to the roll.

Here is another project I made using an empty ribbon spool as the base to a little display item: Boo Who


Paint the dowel rod, if you'd like, with acrylic craft paints.

I folded a piece of scratch paper in half and cut out a large heart shape to use as a pattern. I traced this onto four coordinating pieces of decorative paper (all from an old Die Cuts With A View paper stack).

I folded them in half and made a sandwich out of them, carefully keeping them lined up edge to edge. I ran them through the Big Shot die cut machine all at one time with the heart shape from the Movers and Shapers die set that was available through Stampin' Up!

Run lines of clear drying glue or clear dimensional adhesive (such as Crystal Effects from Stampin' Up!) around the edges of the heart openings and along the edges of the large hearts/tree. Apply glitter.

Tape a small piece of clear fishing line across each of the heart shaped openings, on the back side. NOTE: You could just do this to four openings so long as you note which ones they are and how they will line up so when the tree is assembled, each opening has a piece of clear line across it for attaching the photos.

Glue the sides of the tree together. Be sure to leave a small opening at the very top and bottom in the center for the dowel rod to slide through.

This is how my page looked in My Digital Studio, 
ready to be punched out.

Attach heart shaped photos with double stick tape, back to back, to each opening. I used the full heart punch from Stampin' Up! I also used My Digital Studio to make the heart shaped photos first. I opened a new scrapbook page project, inserted 8 heart shaped digital punches then filled each punch with photos. I printed them then punched them out. NOTE: my printer does not print from My Digital Studio properly so I had to make my digital heart punch/photo images larger than the actual punch size in the program to fit the paper punch properly. I did a practice piece first, altering the size (had to increase the digital punch size by about 1/2 inch) of the punch until it fit the actual punch nearly perfectly.

Hot glue small bows to the tops of each heart shaped window.

Pink Pirouette and Whisper White card stock as well as circle punches
from Stampin' Up! were used to create the tags. I wrote the names with a Sharpie marker. I applied Crystal Effects and glitter around the edges of the white circles. Poke a small rhinestone brad with a little piece of pink organdy ribbon through the hole at the top to make a bow. Attach a piece of pink organdy ribbon behind the tag and to the top of the tree. NOTE: I had to trim one of the ends off of each of the brads so it didn't show because of the position it had to be in to hold the bow in place properly, I could not rotate it to hide them.

Make a large bow out of pink satin ribbon and hot glue to the top of the tree.

Yes, this is yet another project featuring my pets rather than family. According to the rules of the contest, no people faces are allowed so I didn't want to have my project disqualified by using family !

Thanks for looking and if you would, take the time to look at all of the entries in the contest on the Fiskars facebook page. Of course all votes (five per day per email address) are much appreciated ! Voting starts September 3rd and ends September 16th. THANK YOU !

Saturday, August 25, 2012

Swinging Roses Card

Most people refer to this type of card as a "swing card". I saw the instructions to make this type of card using  Framelits dies posted to the Stampin' Up! Demonstrator web site quite some time ago. Certainly by now there are numerous blogs with instructions as well as videos posted to show you exactly how to make one. 

I made the swinging base to it quite some time ago, but never completed it into a card until now. I wanted to make a special card for an internet friend that loves to flower garden. She has the most beautiful gardens !
Take a peek at her blog here, so many pretty plants and creative ideas. 

I used the Apothecary Art stamp set and coordinating Framelits dies from Stampin' Up!  YoYo Yellow card stock, Floral background stamp (what a gorgeous, detailed background stamp but it's difficult to see on this card) and YoYo Yellow ink were used to make the base.

A waterbased marker is ideal to ink the outermost edge of the rubber stamp image, leaving the middle design uninked. That way when you stamp it onto a piece of watercolor paper, you will get a nice dashed line outline and nothing else.

Line the image up with the coordinating die and run it through the Big Shot machine.

Stamp the next size up stamp image onto a piece of Always Artichoke card stock then use scissors to trim around the edge of it and flip it over. You want to make a mat for the white piece but there is no Framelits die the correct size to do this. (I think I should have paper pierced around the edge of the green.....)

Punch leaves from Always Artichoke card stock with the Two Step Bird Punch (Stampin' Up!) and a Martha Stewart punch. Glue them into a circle onto the white die cut piece.

I added some premade paper roses that I picked up at a discount store years ago. Little dabs of Stickles glitter glue to the roses and a few leaves here and there resemble dew.

A scrap of yellow organdy ribbon and a tiny tag dangling finish off the front.


The inside is the largest of the Apothecary Art images and coordinating die, stamped and water colored on water color paper. I also added touches of the Stickles glitter glue.

I glued a smaller die cut to the opposite side to write a note on.

I mailed this card in a padded envelope, requiring extra postage (it was $1.95!), so hopefully the roses won't get smashed.

Thanks for looking =)

Friday, August 24, 2012

Wood Spoon Snowman

I was looking at the latest creations on a  blog buddies page (  and noticed she was selected to be a part of a design team on a new blog in September ! I'm very excited for her and can't wait to see what they are going to offer, after all the title is Anything But A Card and I like to make all sorts of crafty things. This is one I will need to try to make an effort to follow =) Anyhow, I decided to peek at each of the other design team members blogs to get a feel for what they make.

While visiting sbartists blog this evening, I saw she was having an altered wooden spoon blog hop in honor of her blogs 5 year anniversary. I decided to whip one up. My little snow guy is rather boring when looking at all of the awesome artsy projects that have been shared, but none the less, it was an excuse to put one of the wooden spoons I bought many years ago to use. I had been a long time subsciber to Crafts magazine and there were a couple of projects I saw way back when that I wanted to make requiring a wooden spoon, never did get around to making tthem and don't recall exactly what the projects were now.

I made my own mitten out of scraps of red felt, freehand drawing a pattern for it. I first thought about making it have a bean bag base so it could stand up somewhere. Then I thought it might be better to make it as an ornament for the Christmas tree or perhaps attach it to a "Let It Snow" sign.

I stitched along the edges with some old fuzzy thread that was to be used in a needle punch tool I bought, no joke, easily 20 years ago - and have never used!!!! Now I wonder what was I thinking back then. Truthfully I know : "Oh, it'll make cute decorations on the kids' clothes!" I have an itch to get it out and try to make a little ornament for the Christmas tree. I may stamp a piece of fabric with a snowman image and needle punch it in.... maybe.... one day.
Anyway, back to the project I've shared here.

I cut the wooden spoon down then painted it with white acrylic craft paint. Dotted on black eyes with the end of the paint brush, rubbed on a bit of blush (really needs to be light pink paint to show up better).

The nose is made from orange Sculpey clay. It is one I have had in my stash for some time. I made a dozen of them one day so they'd be ready to use if I ever needed one for a project.

I stamped a snowflake (Snowfall set from Stampin' Up!) with white paint onto the felt then added a couple of little rhinestones. I would rather have used a snowflake die cut piece of white felt, but I don't have one the correct size that could cut through the felt.

Lightly stuffed the mitten and inserted the spoon head, hot glued into place.

Tore a scrap of fabric, tied around the neck, hot glued on a button.

The little shovel is something from an old item that broke long ago. It has been waiting ever so patiently in my craft dungeon to be used again one day.

I'll be sharing how I made the projects I submitted to the Fiskars Fuse contest here on my blog in a couple of days, so come back soon. 

Thanks for looking =) 

Thursday, August 23, 2012

Paint Distressed Card Stock - more styles

A couple more samples of things I've done with acrylic craft paint on card stock

wax resist - using an old clear candle, lightly rub over the card stock
then paint over the wax. Carefully remove the dried paint by
rubbing with an old rag. I love to recreate an old 
weathered, painted wood look with this technique.

 sponged - dampened stampin' sponge with a light touch of paint on the top sample
sea sponge with a bit more paint on the bottom sample

ragged with crumpled up plastic wrap 

washed - watered down paint brushed on with a wide paint brush

dry brushed

I have also used acrylic craft paints and crackle medium on chipboard 

It's fun to experiment with different mediums on card stock 
to create different background effects!
Above are just a few ideas.

Thanks for looking =) 

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Paint Distressed Card Stock

I made this card so long ago and finally decided to use it. I was playing with acrylic craft paints on paper several years ago, trying some of the techniques I've used on craft projects on card stock. I made several different pieces using different techniques. This background is one of those. 

This particular piece uses dry brushing and fly specking of acrylic craft paints onto Ruby Red card stock from Stampin' Up!

This is how you achieve this particular distressed look:

*Just barely dip the tips of bristles on a toothbrush into acrylic craft piant, then lightly drag it across the card stock to create the dry brushed lines. You may want to dab it onto a scrap piece of paper towel first to make sure it isn't too wet with paint. You can use as many colors as you'd like, I used two.
*Once you are happy with the dry brushing of the streaks on your paper, rinse and dry the toothbrush.
*Once again barely dip the bristles into acrylic craft paint, but this time run your thumb across the bristles to flick the paint onto the card stock to create a "fly specked" (paint splattered) look.

The apple image was stamped with Basic Black ink onto a piece of one of the old Naturals card stocksI water colored with Classic ink pads from Stampin' Up! and an aquapainter. I also used a marker in a spritzer tool to "airbrush" on fine splatters of ink. 

The apple piece is mounted onto Garden Green card stock that I crumpled then ever so lightly rubbed paint over the ripples of the crumpled card stock. The top of it is rolled around a sliver of a real twig while the bottom has been torn by hand.

I also stamped and water colored the same apple image from the stamp set inside the card and on the envelope.

Thanks for looking =)

Saturday, August 18, 2012

I Brake for Yard Sales

You may have seen the bumper stickers on cars or heard the jokes about women and yard sales. Although that does not describe me, I did make a U-turn for a church parking lot sale recently and glad I did !

(read about a trip I made to a yard sale earlier this year here if you are a Stampin' Up! stamp set lover)

On my way in to town to do some errands, I drove by a parking lot sale at a local church. I decided I'd turn around and go back to see what they had since it wasn't too hot out yet and early in the morning. If I stopped on my way back by, I'd have a car full of groceries that would get hot but more importantly,  there might have been some bargains I missed ! Despite it being several individuals selling there stuff (lots of old junk to me, but you know the saying how one man's junk is another man's treasure....) out of their cars, I'm happy I decided to make that Uturn. I bought all 180 (that's right, one hundred and eighty!) pieces of retired Stampin' Up! colors of card stock from a lady for 5 cents a sheet ! I thought it was a great deal even if they were retired and not necessarily colors I use often. She told me that she really didn't want to take anything back home, they were leftovers from a yard sale she had a couple of weeks ago. She also had a couple dozen stamp sets priced very reasonably, but I resisted. Honestly, had they been older stamp sets I wished I would have bought years ago, I would not have hesitated to buy them, but most were the free sets from SaleABration. I really had to use my will power to pass some of them up though.
"I don't need more, I don't need more..... I don't use what I already have nearly enough not to mention I still have sets I haven't used yet. I don't need more even if they are almost half price!" Now if only I can channel that willpower towards my Dove chocolate urges, grin !

Anyhow, she was glad to be rid of it. I think all of the greens will come in handy to make holiday cards for heroes this year =) 

Saturday, August 11, 2012

Glitter Paper for My Digital Studio - home made

See yesterday's post for a project with the digital Dazzling Diamonds glitter paper and details on how I made it.

I decided to give it another try, this time making digital red glitter paper and here is a quickie project made using it with My Digital Studio. Inspired by simple ornaments I made several years ago, reusing old glass ornaments. I have made a version of this card using decorative scraps and embellishments in the past. I decided it might make a pretty easy card project to show off the glitter / glimmer / shimmer papers I made. It looks pretty decent on my computer monitor, but I don't think it would look nearly as nice printed out.

Supplies used in My Digital Studio:

Whisper White, More Mustard card stock and my glitter papers

Circle, rounded corner square, oval and snowflake punches

Cherry Cobbler satin ribbon


Real Red glimmer brad

Vintage Overlays for the faux dry embossed edge ("stamp" in Whisper White, center the drop shadow and play with the blur /opacity to get the effect you want)

Happy Holidays "stamped" in Cherry Cobbler

I made the red glitter paper differently, it was an experiment. I used my original Dazzling Diamonds digital file and opened it in Photoshop Elements 10. I played around with it until I figured out how to change the color (I really don't know what I am doing!). My "Aha!" moment: I opened a new adjustment layer and filled it with a solid color ( a shade of red) then reduced the opacity a bit. It isn't "shimmery" like the original file, as expected. I ought to try to make it the way I made the Dazzling Diamonds digital paper file: dump red glitter out on a piece of paper and take a photo of it.

Thanks for looking =)

Friday, August 10, 2012

Scrapbook Page with My Digital Studio -Glitter!

I came across this photo while looking for one to submit to a pet calendar fundraising contest. One of my favorites of our beloved dog Cassie who passed away last year.  Not that I need yet another project featuring one of my pets, but I couldn't resist making this scrapbook page with My Digital Studio using the papers I recently spent hours (and hours and hours!) digitizing. I used my Canoscan to scan in retired designer papers that are not available digitally for use with MDS. It was a good project to work on during the record breaking heat we've had this summer. Love these papers, but I wanted a little something more for this project ......... glitter ! 

The layout is based on a sketch at the Create With Connie and Mary web site this week that I saw a reference to elsewhere.  I did change it a tiny bit ;)    CCMC213  < Click the link to see dozens of  fantastic submissions !

My Digital Glitter Paper Closeup

                       ** click the image above to enlarge so you can see the digital glitter paper on the snowflake better!**

This is a close up of my digital glitter paper (also thread for the button and digitized papers I made as well ). It was a bit tricky to make the digital glitter paper, and I know it can be better, but it isn't bad. It looks pretty good, for a digital image, on smaller items such as this snowflake punch.

This is how I made my digital glitter/glimmer/shimmer paper:
~I sprinkled Dazzling Diamonds glitter onto white pape then took a photo of it.
~I opened that digital photo file on my computer and increased the exposure with Photoshop Elements 10 to make it white since it came out gray (I could also use it as a silver metallic digital glitter paper!).
~I cropped out the best looking area and saved it as my glitter paper file to use in My Digital Studio.
~I saved the custom made paper file in a folder I created and named Custom under My Computer / Program Files / My Digital Studio / Components / Backgrounds / Designer Series Papers. 

In order to make the glitter paper look better on the snowflake punch in My Digital Studio, I layered two snowflake punches on top of each other. The base punch is Whisper White, the top one is my glitter paper that I reduced in opacity a bit . I had to do this because I thought the digital glitter paper still had a gray tint to it. I also changed the size of the punch in relation to the original digital glitter paper file I filled it with by clicking on it a couple of times. By doing this, the flakes got smaller, more fine (the punch was zooming out on the paper fill screen). Look at tomorrows post to see the glitter a bit "chunkier" by not reducing the size of the original file in the punch. 

No, I've not had my digitized papers printed out to know how they look in ink on paper vs my computer screen.

*My Digital Studio from Stampin' Up!, original version
*All decorative papers are made by me by digitizing Ski Slope designer papers and glitter.
*Old Olive textured card stock and scalloped square punch for the scalloped edge photo mat
*Chocolate Chip around the edge of the photo (photo mat)
*Square punches stretched to make rectangles then filled with decorative paper
*Scalloped Square punch filled with matching paper and hidden behind the brown rectangle to get the scalloped edge on the end (easier than trying to use the scallped edge punch then covering up a portion of it with a square punch filled with the blue snowflake designer paper, believe me I tried that first)
*Snowflake punch filled with my glitter paper
*Scalloped circle and circle punchs
*Baja Breeze button (Subtles buttons)
* the thread I created to fill the button holes
I made the digital thread some time ago basically the same way although I don't remember all of the exact steps. I saved it into a custom folder I made in the Embellishments folder.

There are likely glitter digital papers already shared somewhere on the web, but I don't do much internet surfing (and no downloads unless I pack the old laptop off to get free wifi somewhere, and even then it doesn't always work !) due to slow internet connection.

Check back tomorrow for another My Digital Studio glitter paper project - with red glitter.

Thanks for looking =) 

Thursday, August 9, 2012

My Digital Studio - testing a crazy idea

My Digital Studio Holiday Card - playing around, testing an idea

I've had this crazy, time consuming idea ever since I bought My Digital Studio a couple of years ago and never attempted: make new digital papers from old designer papers I already own and that are not available digitally.

What better way to stay inside out of the heat than to try out this idea now that my Honor Flight card project was complete and in the mail !

I'm so proud of myself for muddling through, determined to make it work - and having no real idea of how to go about it. Of course, I made it far more difficult than it needed to be, but I'm glad I took the extra time (hours and hours and hours!) to do it the way I did. In the end after lots of trial and error I think I have decent digital images of my actual papers. They are not as perfect as the true digital image would be if they were purchased from Stampin' Up!, but since these designs are not available, I did the best I could. As I go through them and use them I may find more little glitches that I will need to try to repair.

The testing project above uses the Ski Slope designer papers and some embellishments. I used a circle punch, varied in size, and filled with each of the twelve designs of the designer paper.

My Digital Studio Supplies:
Circle Punch
Polka dot scalloped edge ribbon
Old Olive glimmer brad
Neutrals buttons
Old Olive Satin ribbon knot
Chocolate Chip brads
Corduroy Buttons, Chocolate Chip
Seam binding, Baja Breeze
Vintage Brad
Stamp brush, Chocolate Chip ink- I don't remember which set it came from!
5x7 card size

Note the thread in the buttons on the upper left. I made that image quite some time ago. Once again, it was a time consuming learning process (that I have no idea now how I did it!) to create. I disliked that there were no knots or loops of thread to run through the button holes so I made my own. They are tricky to use though since they need to be teeny tiny, but it sure finishes off the button holes.

Thanks for looking =)

Sunday, August 5, 2012

Honor Flight Cards Part 5

I miss Stampin' Up! making stamp sets with coordinating brass templates.
The star card in front is made with one such set. 
Stamp the star image then pierce around it with the matching template.

The flag on the front card was stamped on copy weight paper,
colored then cut out and adhered to the front along the pole.
Slight bending of the paper gives it the impression that it is
waving in the wind.

The star cards are two step stamp sets with two colors of ink.
The flag is one stamp image that I colored with water based markers. 

These are the last of the cards made from scraps and premade note cards that I altered (see first post in the series, August 1st). I made 95 of them, three of each design that I've shared in the past several posts, to donate to an Honor Flight.

Retired Stampin' Up! rubber stamp sets used on these cards:

Love It and coordinating brass template

God Bless America
Americana Collection
Stars and Swirls
Background Basics
Happy Fourth
Swirly Stars Jumbo Wheel

Real Red and Brilliant Blue ink pads and markers
small star paper punch
paper piercer

Thanks for looking =) 

Saturday, August 4, 2012

Honor Flight Cards Part 4

Cards made from scraps and premade note cards that I altered (see the first post in this series, August 1st). I made 95 of them, three of each design that I've shared in the past several posts, to donate to an Honor Flight.

Assorted punches, embossing folders, brass template, card stock scraps were used to embellish the plain white note cards. 

Thanks for looking =) 

Friday, August 3, 2012

Honor Flight Cards Part 3

More of the 95 cards I made and donated to an Honor Flight.

Assorted card stock scraps, punches, die, embossing folder, brass templates, Scor Pal and paper piercer were used to decorate note cards already printed with Thank You.

Thanks for looking =)

Thursday, August 2, 2012

Honor Flight Cards Part 2

The dry embossed lines on the white card bases are
created with a Scor Pal and stylus.

Paper Crimper adds a fun look to the card stock strips.

Assorted cards I made to donate to an Honor Flight.
I made three of each design, 
there are 95 in all I donated.

Assorted card stock scraps
Assorted punches
Paper Crimper
Scor Pal
Embossing Folder
Paper Piercer

Thanks for looking =)

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Honor Flight - Cards For Veterans

I received an email from an old high school acquaintance two weeks ago letting fellow classmates know that his father was going on an Honor Flight. He asked that we send a note of thanks to his father and if we wanted to, any other veteran on the flight.

I was already contemplating what my next big project would be when I received this email, so I wrote back telling him I would for sure send a card to his father and asking if he knew how many Veterans may be on the flight. He replied 95 ! WOW! I had no idea that many went at one time ! I thought if it was a couple dozen or so I'd make a card for each, that way every Veteran on the flight would receive at least one card.

After thinking about it a little bit and looking through my supplies, I decided what better way to stay out of the extreme heat and humidity we are still having here in the Midwest: I'll make 95 Thank You cards, one for each Veteran on this particular Honor Flight. Honor Flights alone are a special, moving experience for our Veterans, but I think receiving cards and notes would make it more so.

Because of the number had to make in such a short amount of time, they are pretty simple.

I started off by altering two and a half boxes of adorable eyelet edged Thank You cards made by Martha Stewart Crafts. I found them at a discount store for $2 a box a couple of years ago and couldn't pass them up. It was worth if for the heavyweight, white invitation sized envelopes alone !

I trimmed the eyelet edge off as well as the same amount from the back. I will reuse the eyelet edge on another project at some point. I did use a couple of eyelet edged cards last year to make "Love" cards for Operation Write Home. If you click here, you can see one of the cards made with the extra eyelet edges cut off and reused.

After removing the eyelet edge, I then trimmed 1/8" off of each side. The finished card size is 5.25" long by 3" wide.

Because the cards were so much smaller once altered, I made envelopes to fit them by cutting down some old 5.5" x7.5"  sized envelopes I received many years ago.  This way I can use the nice invitation sized envelopes for other cards another time while finally using up some old items I had stashed.

I used lots of card stock scraps, dies and punches, paper crimper, embossing folders, ScorPal, some ink and some stamps to make these cards of thanks for the Veterans. There were 95 in all: 3 copied of 31 designs then 2 copies of a 32nd design. I'll be sharing them over the next several posts.

Thanks for looking =)