Thursday, January 29, 2015

My Cards and Tags: Inspiration

I gasped, yes GASPED, when I saw a "Make It Monday" demo on Nichole Heady's blog (Papertrey Ink) showing how to make these adorable confetti garlands. It was the good kind of gasp and I couldn't wait to try my hand at a confetti garland of my own.  Here's how my card turned out:

If you check out the demo, the confetti garland runs horizontally across the top of the card, which I love.  But I thought I'd see what it looked like vertically, so that's what this card shows.  I made two side-by-side mini garlands that have flowers, quatrefoil shapes and faux sequins strung onto embroidery floss.  I made the background using Prima paper and PTI's Simply Framed stamp set.  The "inspiration" sentiment comes from PTI's Phrase Play #1 stamp set and the quatrefoil shapes were some leftovers I had from a previous project I made using PTI's Quatrefoil cover plate die.

I really do dig these confetti garlands, so a big kudos to the talented ladies at PTI for providing such a fun and inspiring demo!  I thoroughly enjoyed this project and will definitely add "confetti garlands" to my crafting arsenal!

Sunday, January 25, 2015

My Cards and Tags: Day Planner Cards

This week's Simon Says Stamp Monday challenge theme is, "...from up in the clouds."  I thought what better thing to pull out of the clouds than my scattered flighty brain?  I tell you- sometimes I totally space it, so I decided to make some day planner cards to keep me organized. 

I made planner cards because I kept forgetting to buy an actual planner (see why I need these?) and I also thought these would be an adorable addition to pocket scrapbooking pages to show what was done on a certain day.

To make these cards, I used a 3" x 4" rounded corner punch and some Flea Market paper.  I wrote the weekdays using Lawn Fawn's Milo's ABC's set.  I outlined each card with Distress Markers.

The planner components are from various planner stamp sets.  I threw in a milk carton from Paper Smooches, too, next to Wednesday's menu.  I filled in the background using Prima's honeycomb stencil.

After doing these cards, I can totally see why people decorate their planners.  It makes some of life's monotonous duties feel a little more artistic!  

You can find these supplies to spiff up your own planner at the Simon Says Stamp store:

How will you bring these week's theme to life?  I'll look forward to seeing your creations!  Upload them to the Simon Says Stamp Monday Challenge Blog for your chance to win a $50 voucher to Simon Says Stamp!

My Cards and Tags: Papertrey January Blog Hop Challenge - You are my Happy Place

I was so inspired by Papertrey Ink's Blog Hop theme this month (hearts and expressing heartfelt sentiments), that I decided to hop in on the fun.  Here's the card I made using a few of my favorite PTI products:

I cannot get enough of the lattice/trellis look, so I used PTI's Quatrefoil cover plate die for the background.  I really like how it covers so much surface area.  I used hearts from the new Make It Market: You're a Masterpiece kit.

I put together the sentiment by using PTI's Phrase Play #5 stamp set and their Phrase Play #1 stamp set.  Love the versatility of these sets!

This was a project I thoroughly enjoyed, so kudos to Papertrey Ink for kicking out some excellent products and a Blog Hop theme I couldn't pass up!

Saturday, January 24, 2015

Tutorials: Stamp Revamp

Happy weekend, all!  I found myself with a few spare minutes this afternoon...well...let's be honest; I found those spare minutes because I avoided cleaning the kitchen.  Be that as it may, I decided to do a "stamp revamp."  What and why is a stamp revamp?  It's when you destroy/alter a stamp so that you can use it in a different way (that's my definition anyway).

Here's a tag I made and I'll show you the steps I took to revamp the stamp I used for the background.

You know I love 100 Proof Press stamps and they have a great stamp called Typing Keys.  I adore those little circular keys and like how half are solid while the others are outlines.  Here's a close-up of the stamped image:

While I really like this stamp, I had a vision of using these keys in a scattered pattern instead of a linear one.  I had to make a dire decision!  Do I leave the stamp or revamp?  I decided to revamp...that is, change it entirely.  Is revamping scary?  Yes.  Is it always successful?  No.  Can it result in total failure and the destruction of a perfectly fine and innocent stamp?  Yes.  Been there.  But I decided to go for it anyway.

The Typing Keys stamp I had was on cling film (though I recommend buying it unmounted if you're wanting to change it up), so I started by finding a junky wooden block that would serve as the base for my "new" stamp.  Your wood can come from hardware stores, or from peeling off the rubber from another wooden stamp you already own and don't use anymore.  I've even used Jenga blocks from time to time.  Once you have your base ready, (and this is where you have to be courageous), you start cutting up the stamp you want to revamp.

I cut it in half first, then started cutting out the individual circle letters.  You'll notice they don't have to be precise cuts.

Once my circles were cut, I peeled off the gray cling film and stuck the circles onto my wooden block.  There was enough adhesive left from the cling film that I didn't have to add anything else.

Now my "revamped stamp" is ready to go!  I hit it with Ranger Jet Black archival ink and here's the new image I made:

I had such fun that I made a second stamp with a different pattern of circles.  And the good news is that I used so few circles total, that I could still use what was left of my original Typing Keys stamp if I do want that linear look in the future.

I had fun with this project and like how my "scattered" keys turned out.  I used them on the background of this tag, then watercolored around them.  I added some scribbles with Sharpie and finished it off with a Prima rose and some "love" Washi tape from Hampton Arts.

It takes courage to take scissors to your stamps and I can't say that I recommend it as a general practice, but it is a worthwhile experiment to try if you need an excuse to not be cleaning your kitchen!

Sunday, January 18, 2015

My Other Creations: Polka Dotty Notebook

This week's theme at the Simon Says Stamp Monday Challenge Blog is Winter Stamping.  I decided to deconstruct one of my favorite dies, Tim Holtz's Snowman, and turn those fluffy white snowman circles into stamped-on polka dots for the cover of my notebook.

Using white watercolor paper, I started by cutting out two sets of snowman circles.  I love the asymmetry of these! 

Next I used Ranger Jet Black Archival ink to stamp some of my favorite text patterns onto the circles.

Out came the Distress Inks, which I rubbed onto the circles with a sponge (though a mini ink blending tool also works great).  I got out my black Gesso and a brush and I outlined the circles after I'd inked them.

I prepared my notebook cover by painting it, inking it, stamping on it and drizzling Distress Paint down it.

I decided to add a thicker layer of black Gesso around my circles, then I attached them to my notebook cover and wah-la!  Snowman re-purposed!  

To make the notebook, I used the Lifestyle Crafts Pocket Scrap Starter Die set to cut out what felt like eighty million sheets of white paper (not for those who fear monotony)!  I used the Cinch machine and a Cinch wire spiral to bind it all together.

Another fun element that I played with on this project was Dyan Reaveley's "Say it How it Is" stamp set.  The sentiment I put on the front of the notebook doesn't exist, but I took words from her other sentiments and invented my own sentence.  My nerdy English side loves to mix and switch words around.

You can make your own notebooks and snowman polka dots if you have these supplies, which are readily available from Simon Says Stamp:

I can't wait to see your interpretation of our theme!  Just upload your masterpiece to the Simon Says Stamp Monday Challenge Blog to inspire the rest of us and to enter yourself into the drawing for a $50 voucher to the Simon Says Stamp store.