Monday, March 31, 2008
In the midst of saving for a second vehicle, our only vehicle's engine died. Not fun! Living in a small community, this means a long wait for an engine replacement. What were we to do? Not only did my husband need to get back and forth to work, but our daughter Karen was coming home in a week for spring break, and it was a four hour round trip to get her, then we'd need to take her back to the same place the following week. During that week, she needed to be taken for a sleep study 45 minutes away (she actually ended up having to do it twice, so four trips were necessary!).
Friends of ours had just been given a third vehicle from a relative that had just passed away, and they planned to give it to their son, also coming home for spring break. They were able to give us the use of a vehicle through today (two and a half weeks later)! What a tremendous blessing!
They are both musicians; he is a pianist, she is a violinist. So by way of thank you, I put together a set of music cards. Most were from my "stash" of cards I rotate at City News, the rest I made in the last couple of days.
Piano is from Stubby Stampers, text is from Biblical Impressions
Saturday, March 29, 2008
I mentioned in Thursday's post I had some stuff that came from an old stationary store. Well, these envelopes were some of what I came away with. They've been stashed in my attic - a huge box of them - for several years with no use for me. We have standard white business envelopes, with little use even for them. These are also larger, 11" x 4.75"; an odd size indeed! But while looking for something up in my attic today, I came across them again, and suddenly it clicked that they were coated envelopes; perhaps alcohol inks could be applied.
As you can see, it definitly works! Since the envelopes are brown, the colors are more muted; they are less bright than the picture shows them to be, and the blue looks "browner" than you see it here (the light spots are pearl fixative, which did not work very well, I used gold fixative with the green, which worked a little better). Still, I'm pleased, and with postal regs and prices, it's nice to have something thin and lightweight to use.
So ... what do you have lying around that you've dismissed short-sightedly for craft use? :-)
Friday, March 28, 2008
Thursday, March 27, 2008
Ah, a simple challenge! I really love the stretch of a true "challenge"; by definition, it ought not be easy! But, I needed something simpler today. The tags come from a large box of them I got from a bunch of stuff donated to the local YFC. It came from a woman whose husband had never thrown everything out from a stationery store he'd owned quite a number of years earlier. I wasn't a stamper then; I planned to use them for garage sales!
I did still take awhile to do this card; I wanted a coordinating paper, and had a hard time finding something with light blue and red. This paper looked perfect, but I realized as I was assembling it that it was just too white for my tags. A vanilla memories pad took care of that. Then it seemed a bit plain, so I punched out a few tiny circles (mounted on a couple of layers of cardstock to give a more "buttony" look). The card looks both better and worse than the photo shows: I was not paying attention when I glued the paper under the punched corners, and it pushed through the holes (it's not visible in the picture). Tomorrow, several of my daughters' friends are coming over, including one who wants to see how I do journals, and my craft room is a wreck, so I decided not to work any more on the card. Hopefully, if I can get the glue problem dealt with, I'll fix the card up a little better. The colors look much better together than the pictures shows.
Wednesday, March 26, 2008
This was a really tough card for me. I almost did not do it because I mostly make cards to sell, and keep to standard, A2 size, with blank insides (In fact, I made yesterday's card, as you can see in that post, into an A2 card!)
**Day 3 Challenge Rules** Today you get to make a card that doesn't fold in half....it is what I like to call a Funky Fold. 1) It can be any size card but can not fold in half 2) It must be decorated on the inside and outside 3) You must spell out a word using stickers, thickers, die cuts or alphabet stamps 4) It has to have polka dots.
Making a card that I can't use is so hard! But being forced to (over-used cliche warning:) thinkoutsidethebox is very, very good for me! So, it was hard, but I'm grateful for the challenge! :-)
These first pics are what I came up with second; my first try, hoping to have one piece of cardstock, definitely did not work. When I finished with this one, I wasn't sure it was quite what I was supposed to be doing, it was more of a postcard with a flap, if that makes sense. After I took the picture, it occured to me that if the joy panel was actually a folded card, I could put a slit in the fold and slip a secondary panel (after applying glue) into the slot, and attach. I had only temporarily bonded everything, so I just created a card, and affixed the joy panel onto it. Much less bother, and closer to my original idea.
Now what on earth will I do with it??
Tuesday, March 25, 2008
Day two of Denise Bryant's challenge. I'm having so much fun! This is probably only the second square card I have ever made!
The black cardstock panel and square were already stamped from an earlier project. When I found them this morning, I decided to make an "elegant" looking card. However, the cardstock had its own ideas! It's a familiar feeling from when I used to do a lot of writing. I'd start out with a particular storyline, or idea for a character, and end up going in a totally different direction, without consciously deciding to. The squares were attached with foam pieces to make them stand out.
In order to make the baroque pattern (stamped in black & embossed) stand out, I had to lighten the card; the black is actually a very deep black, not grey as it appears. The cord and brad are silver.
Stamps are from Eureka.
Edit: I couldn't help it, I had to make it into an A2 card for my friend's shop!
Second edit: I decided this card would be great for my next workshop. One of the ladies thought it was perfect for a graduation card, and made a tassel for the black panel!
Monday, March 24, 2008
I was having a really useless day as far as stamping is concerned. Then I had to take my daughter out of town tonight, and knew that by the time I returned home, I'd be too tired to do anything. Then I saw this challenge on All Things Stamped! Somehow, it was just what I needed. One "rule" is that the card had to be finished by midnight tonight, mountain time. Hmmm ... Could I make a card by midnight Eastern time?
I managed to do it, but then the search for the camera ... wow! My youngest dd loves to take pictures, and my oldest was trying to load something on to it to transfer it to another camera. Or something. ?? Anyway, I finally found it! After all that, the picture did not turn out well, and the tree branch looked rather odd. I actually stamped the branch again for more fullness.
Scripture, dove, and grass are all from Biblical Impressions, tree branch is from Alextamping, flower is SU.
Lesson learned: be careful about using magazines for scrap. I like to take catalogs, and use them when I spread glue on my layers so that I can glue right up to the edge. It works well, but this catalog had ink that seemed to not be completely dried, which is rather odd, as it has to be at least a few days from printing. But, perhaps the seals were applied very soon after printing, and kept the ink from perfectly drying. Anyway, there are a few smudges on the vellum. :-(
Another one of my Dad's pictures!
When I print pictures, I like to do it on linen cardstock. The linen I have, from Marco's, has one side more deeply etched than the other; if using linen for additional layering or text, I use the more shallow side. However, other than the photo, all of the cardstock here is Italian Arcobelano.
Text is from Biblical Impressions.
Saturday, March 22, 2008
This was an interesting challenge! This is what I came up with. After I scanned the card, I realized that the crowns needed some color. Unfortunately, I wasn't happy with the results. If I decide to actually keep/use the card, I have little gemstones I'll attach to the upper crown.
Crowns are from smARTworks.
Friday, March 21, 2008
I went down to meet a friend and exchange cards at the shoppe in which I sell handmade cards/journals, etc. The friend meeting me is a food inspector, and was telling us a little about a botulism case in her area. When I got home and looked through my cards to identify which ones had sold, I found this card, and promptly thought, "My card has botulism!" I had made three of this design, and all three were warped. I've never had this happen to a card before, and am curious if anyone else knows why this happened. It's very dramatic, but was hard to see in photographs. Hopefully I took enough that you can see what I mean.
Unfortunately, I cannot be sure of the glues I used, although I am positive I used repositional craft stick glue for the vellum that is visible. But for the vellum beneath the oval layers, I am not sure. Probably a combination of double sided tape and some type of glue stick (I try to economize by using just a little tape, and do the rest with glue). As you can see, I have another vellum card that does not have this problem, though that one, being a specific event, did not spend much time in the store. Any clues?
Thursday, March 20, 2008
This seems an appropriate card to post to all of you who have posted such wonderful comments on my blog! It truly has encouraged and blessed to me to receive them, and I thank each of you! You may not think such a little thing matters, but it really makes a difference in my day! Some of you don't have e-mail contacts, and so I have never been able to thank you personally, but know that you are all special ladies and I appreciate you!
Text from Encouraging Impressions.
Wednesday, March 19, 2008
This is my favorite photo card so far. I wish I could figure out where my Dad took it; I believe it's Lake Luzerne in the southern end of the Adirondack Mountains where I grew up, but the background mountain looks a bit too low...
I originally planned to stamp and emboss directly on the card, but there was what I thought was a printing error on the picture (later my daughter and husband figured out it actually was part of the picture). I'm so glad I thought it was a mistake though, because I just love how the vellum looks!
Tuesday, March 18, 2008
I made a card with this photo earlier, and for some reason, had printed another and trimmed it to this size. I couldn't remember what I had been planning to do, but did not want to waste it.
Text is from Eureka, and actually does show up better than it appears here in the photo.
Monday, March 17, 2008
Last month I made a photo card very similar to this, only with a winter scene. I am so happy to have this treasure trove of photographs that my Dad took.
I trimmed the corners as I did because I had accidently damaged a corner in the process of trimming the picture. :-)
Text is from Biblical Impressions.
Saturday, March 15, 2008
I have had this stamp (Biblical Impressions) for ages, but just never got around to using it. Stamps that need coloring tend to get less attention, though my friend Jacki sent me some "real" (as opposed to el cheapos from who-knows-where) pencils and a blender pencil (I didn't even know what one looked like!), and finally, finally, this week I am totally "clear" to learn how to use them! I'm not very confident, after all, I was the last kid in kindergarten (or was it seventh grade, lol?)to figure out how to color inside the lines - and I'm not kidding about that, I can remember how frustrated I was whenever we had to color. I remember having one friend who would actually color in one shade around the inside of the lines, and another to fill in the space. I didn't have a clue what that was all about ...
Anyway, I embossed the images (Biblical Impressions and Autumn leaves Swirls) in gold on micro-sparkle white cardstock, and colored in with Twinkling H20s. Not knowing much about coloring, I just penciled in a little grey along the gold outline of the dove. (If someone would like to tell me what I should have done, that would be helpful!) I layered the image and text on pink, and mounted the panel onto Arcabelano Intense yellow dark. Again, apologies for my poor camera skills. I was hoping to play around with the camera today, but our van died on Thursday, had to be towed, and the camera had been left in it. We only had the one vehicle, so we're stranded and haven't managed to retrieve everything from the van -- the engine is gone, so we won't be getting it back for awhile...
Friday, March 14, 2008
...when something is going to be useful after all!
I love to throw things out, and when I'm on a purge, I can be brutal. However, since I've really gotten into stamping, I've realized that what I don't find use for now, I probably will later.
This card came from a set of notecards that I made a month or so ago. I had accidently smudged the edge of the card, so I could not sell it. In trying to decide how to add to it, I remembered these little self-adhesive embellishments. I don't know where they came from, but I've had them for ages and really never thought I'd need them. I was delighted to find a use for them ... peacock feathers and jewels just seem to go together!
Feather is from Eureka, text is from http://www.biblicalstamps.com/SarahK/.
Thursday, March 13, 2008
I'd had the top card for awhile, unsold, and while many of my cards don't sell, I knew this one hadn't sold at least in part because the text was not dark enough. It was darker than what you see in the scan, but still too light. So I decided to rework the card. I really liked the background, though, which was done with alcohol inks. (I applied them to the felt in straight lines, then swept the applicator across the cardstock.) The ribbon was still firmly in place, so I decided to leave it. I found a coordinating piece of alcohol-inked cardstock, and punched a hole out of it to place onto a new, larger button. I changed the direction of the card, and stamped with text from SU, and mounted onto my favorite brand of paper (Arcobelano). I then attached to a card of the same color as the original.
I really enjoy affixing coordinating punched circles to buttons. I recently purchased some tiny buttons from SmARTworks so that I can use my 1/4 inch punch as well.
Wednesday, March 12, 2008
I love the hymn, "It is well with my soul," and I like to pray for people with those words at times. So, this is one of the stamps from my own set.
I'm still working on camera skills -- I know I need to just spend a few hours really getting to know the camera. With my schedule, it's hard to do something that is not immediately productive!
To my shame, I nearly considered going to prayer meeting tonight to be "unproductive." Not literally, of course, but I did not make a point of calling someone for a ride (we only have one vehicle, and my husband works three to midnight or two). Fortunately, someone called to offer one, and so I went. Thank you Lord, for faithful friends!
Tuesday, March 11, 2008
The SALT challenge this week has been Inspiring Christian Women. I immediately thought of Corrie Ten Boom, because I had a stamp quote of hers! I never ended up using the quote stamp (though the quotes here are just a few of her many excellent ones), but I had a great afternoon reading up on Corrie (and following all the links!) It has been quite a few years since I read her story or watched the movie, The Hiding Place. She had greatly inspired me as a young person; I was very fascinated by anything to do with WWII, especially the European end of things. I devoured books having to do with it all, primarily historical fiction, always my favorite way to learn history, providing the author cares about getting details correct.
I think the only time I play with collage is when there is a SALT challenge; it just does not come naturally to me. Since I am so busy, it takes a real push for me to try it. I love looking at other people's collage, but when I try doing it, it just seems like making a mess. Since that reflects my housekeeping, that shouldn't be a problem, lol, but it is! The first try seemed to full of bare patches, the second try is too cluttery. But, I have used up a huge chunk of my day, so I'm not going to work on it any longer. I'm so glad I did it, though, I'm feeling spiritually, if not artistically, very inspired! ;-)
While I have linked a jumping off site for anyone to click on, I did want to put here the context of the sentence on the hand (which came from a site I forgot to bookmark):
It was at a church service in Munich that I saw him, a former S.S. man who had stood guard at the shower room door in the processing center at Ravensbruck. He was the first of our actual jailers that I had seen since that time. And suddenly it was all there – the roomful of mocking men, the heaps of clothing, Betsie's pain-blanched face. He came up to me as the church was emptying, beaming and bowing. “How grateful I am for your message, Fraulein.” He said. “To think that, as you say, He has washed my sins away!” His hand was thrust out to shake mine. And I, who had preached so often to the people in Bloemendaal the need to forgive, kept my hand at my side. Even as the angry, vengeful thoughts boiled through me, I saw the sin of them. Jesus Christ had died for this man; was I going to ask for more? Lord Jesus, I prayed, forgive me and help me to forgive him. I tried to smile, I struggled to raise my hand. I could not. I felt nothing, not the slightest spark of warmth or charity. And so again I breathed a silent prayer. Jesus, I prayed, I cannot forgive him. Give me Your forgiveness. As I took his hand the most incredible thing happened. From my shoulder along my arm and through my hand a current seemed to pass from me to him, while into my heart sprang a love for this stranger that almost overwhelmed me. And so I discovered that it is not on our forgiveness any more than on our goodness that the world's healing hinges, but on His. When He tells us to love our enemies, He gives, along with the command, the love itself.
I hope you'll take some time to explore this amazing woman's life...
Monday, March 10, 2008
I was having a horrible time trying to find just the right ink for my footprints stamp, and I simply could not find the right shade. I remembered as I looked that I had had very little luck the last time I had tried. Hmmm... Then I finally remembered that I had a footprint punch. Oh, happy day! I was doing the card rather late, and just was not thinking very coherently: The cardstock I decided to use was textured only on one side, so I found myself thinking "How sad, I can only do right footprints, since I can't use the other side of this cardstock." Oh, brother! Fortunately I did realize in the next moment that I just needed to punch from the other side, but I went to bed as soon as I finished, lol!
Saturday, March 8, 2008
I asked my the two main ladies at the workshop if there was anything in particular they wanted to do, and this technique was their choice.
Baroque background is from Eureka, text is from Biblical Impressions.
Friday, March 7, 2008
I really love this technique! I had read about it before, but never got around to trying it until this past week. Wow! So easy, and so effective!
This was one of the other cards we did at the workshop, and they loved it! But, we had a couple of bad starts as I accidently gave the wrong stamp pad to a couple of the ladies. So, everything smeared, and we couldn't figure it out. How embarrassed I was when I realized the problem! Fortunately, they took it all in stride...
For those of you who have never tried this technique, it could not be simpler. Using Stazon or memories black ink, stamp your image onto glossy cardstock. Highlight with a white crayon, then dab (not smear!), colors over the panel. Voila!
Flower is by Biblical Impressions .
The text stamp is from the one sheet of stamps I've managed to get made; it comes from a little song I had made up for the children when they were little, about a million years ago. :-)
Thursday, March 6, 2008
I had ordered some card packs from California Paper goods recently, and one included two tones of brown that looked perfect for coffee cards. (And it turns out that the color name for one is "cappuccino" so obviously I was on to something, lol! They had one of their quarterly auctions the weekend before last, and I managed to win bids on both colors. The order arrived yesterday.
Making cards for workshops is a major challenge for me, as I never feel like I've made quite "the right card," so I constantly am changing my mind and coming up with something different last minute. I had a workshop this evening, and had decided a week or two ago, when we planned it, to not even bother choosing/making cards until two days before as I'd just end up taking as much time as I had, so it wouldn't help to start four days earlier.
So ... I finished my last card at midnight last night, and just needed to remake the coffee card & and get the carstock cut, etc for it (the two of the design I posted yesterday had had sold or were currently in my friend Cheryl's shop where I sell cards - and where I was to do the workshop). Pulling out the cardstock for that design, I realized that since I was making all new cards for the store (whichever cards I made/designed for the workshop would be added into this month's batch), I really did not want to make a card that had already been in the store. At least, that was the excuse for getting into my bronze and cappuccino mica cardstock!!!
They loved the card, so I'm glad I did it! (But I won't tell you what time I went to bed... I had a Bible study to lead and a dr. app't today, so had to finish last night)!
My son, a senior in high school, is taking a couple of classes at a college 40 minutes away, and was going to take the bus back to town, stopping at my husband's place of work to pick up our one vehicle. Then he would drive home, just in time -- actually a little later than I like to leave -- to finish loading me up, and drive down with me to the workshop. It's a 40 minute drive over winding Pennsylvania roads, and night driving is not something I do well at (this was my first night workshop). He also unloads most of my stuff so I can set up, and then packs it all into the van as I slowly get it boxed up. Well, of all days to miss the bus, he missed it today. I didn't receive his e-mail until about ten minutes before he was due to arrive! I'd like to say I handled it with grace and peace, but I'm afraid I was pretty upset with him. I called a friend who was willing to bring me to the van. I called Cheryl to tell her I was going to arrive just a few short minutes before the workshop, and she could hear the anger in my voice. She reminded me that in the light of eternity, what did my son's inablilty to come & the lateness of the workshop really matter? My friend Jacki happened to be online, and told me she'd pray for me. And of course, my friend Denise who picked me up and took me to the van prayed as well. Because of God's work in my life, I don't have a really short fuse, but between lack of sleep (mostly my own fault for being up late, but I have other sleep issues) and the stress of a workshop, I know it was the prayers and encouragement of my three friends that, even before I pulled out of the driveway for the workshop a half hour later, enabled me to not only let go of the frustration, but to actually enjoy the drive down. The ladies at the workshop were completely unconcerned about starting late, were totally unhurried to get out of the store, and all pitched in and helped me get packed up! Isn't that amazing? I stressed for no reason at all... Lord, help me to have right perspective when these things happen, and not sell people short in their abililty to flow with delay...
Wednesday, March 5, 2008
Tuesday, March 4, 2008
The last week has been a frenzy of cardmaking for the shop I sell at. I'm tired of all the cards I've been rotating in and out there, and decided to bring all new cards when I go down to do a workshop on Thursday. In some ways it's probably silly to do this; the area was dealt an economic blow a few years ago that it just can't seem to overcome. Nonetheless, I decided to do it, and wow, it's so nice to have a bunch of cards that I can just send people!
This card was made with a panel I did some time ago, and rejected. But I think it was just because I had a different effect in mind. It actually looks very elegant in person; I am really pleased with it. I used opalite inks for the color; stamp is from SmARTworks.
Monday, March 3, 2008
This alcohol ink covered panel was made some time ago, but I did not protect it, and it was full of scratches. :-( I know to remember to put stamped glossy cardstock inside a sheet of folded paper for protection, but I don't always do so. By using vellum, I am still able to feature the panel, yet keep the scratches in the background, so they are not noticed. So, not a total loss! Text is from Eureka.