Tuesday, November 25, 2008

One last dovely joy!

This time I used foil flakes for the image - I love how it looks, though I'm not thrilled with my layout. :-)

The kids come home from college tomorrow for Thanksgiving break, so I won't be posting again 'till next week. Have a great Thanksgiving, everyone!

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Kreative Blogger awards

As promised, though not on time, so sorry, here is my list of those whom I chose to pass on this award, given to me by Jacki.

The rules:
1. The winner may put the logo on their blog.
2. Put a link to the person who sent you the award.
3. Nominate 5 blogs.
4. Put links to their blogs.
5. Leave a message for your nominees.

This was difficult, because time was short, and there are so many talented stampers out there! But it was a lot of fun as well; I kept forgetting what I needed to accomplish as I explored, and lost a few blogs that way, lol! I finally realized that it was past my bedtime, and I needed to just get the job (privelege!) done! Anyway, I now have some new blogs to visit & some new inspiration, and hopefully others will too!

My apologies that I really did not take the time to make comments about each blogger I picked; I hope you will all visit each one, and see for yourself what impressed me! I can say that these women were chosen because they put great efforts into passing on their experience, because they had unique cards that really inspired me, and/or I was impressed by their communication skills and balance in their blogging (in addition to great cardmaking, of course!).

So, here are the blogs I chose:

1. Lori Craig at Make a difference.

2. Judy at Joy in a Jar

3. Christine at Christine Creations

4. Becca at Amazing Paper Grace

5. Beverly at Bee Stamper

Saturday, November 22, 2008

And more dovely joy...

I embossed these images with Chinese Red Antiquities powders from Ranger. I believe they are no longer made, though the seem similar to the Tim Holtz distress powders.

The background to the top card was made with the silent night stamp from smARTworks.

Friday, November 21, 2008

Dovely Joy in copper

I spent quite a bit of time, on two different days trying to get this card to photograph better, but this gives some idea of the elegance of the card. The stripes on the background paper are very subtle, but not as much as the photo shows, and blend perfectly with the embossed image.

The copper embossing powder was not especially cooperative; I embossed the image several times, but only got smooth coverage a couple of times. It's interesting to me how different embossing powders work...

Thursday, November 20, 2008

"Dovely Joy"

I saw this image on a card at Splitcoast Stampers, and knew it was going to be "the" stamp for me this season. With needing a lot of cards completed in a short amount of time, large, simple images like this are just the thing! The quilt cards were the first time in years I'd made a bunch of themed cards, but I am doing it again with this card! I purchased it from limeLIGHT papercrafts. A small business with great customer service!

I had purchased some embossing glitter over a year ago, but had not yet used it. I though it was the perfect powder for this card! The swirls are embossed with detail silver.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008


It's funny how a photo can change the look of a card ... I was satisfied with how the card turned out, but when looking at the photo of it, the heads of the carolers seemed ridiculous compared to the holly. I had to go look at the card again to make sure it wasn't quite so odd, and it wasn't.

Inks are all distress inks.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008


Someone on the stamping board Gingerwood was searching for a silhouette stamp with skaters, and I think she was even hoping for vintage. I knew just the stamp she needed! This comes from Stubby Stampers, a company I really enjoy doing business with. I bought this stamp last year, but I actually did not use it. But in linking the stamp for the poster, I was inspired to finally make a card with it.

I wanted a more "romantic" look than just black and white. I tried stamping in blue, but that just didn't do it. So, I decided to gry some blue sponged into the background. That seemed to work. I washed the stamp and then stamped just the trees on one side or the other with versamark, and then embossed with clear. It doesn't show up very well in the photo, but it worked well.

Blog award!

Jacki Jones has awarded this to me - wow! Didn't I say she was an encourager? I need to pass it on to five other bloggers. Hmmm...I hate to admit it, but this has caused me to realize that I am in a blog rut! I am always doing, doing, doing, and it's difficult to make time to just browse the inspiring blogs out there. The names that came to mind automatically are the same ones that came to me the last time I received the blessing and honor of an award. So ... I've decided I'm not going to choose anyone that I have chosen for an award before, in fact, I'm going to find five new blogs that inspire me! It will take a few days, as I'm busily preparing for the craft fair, but I didn't want anyone who saw the post on Jacki's site to think I was ungrateful! So ... in a few days, definitely by Sunday (my only non-stamping day), I'll post again about this!

Monday, November 17, 2008

Happy Birthday or Thanksgiving???

My wonderful friend Jacki of the card castle, made this birthday card for me (She attempted to say it was actually a Thanksgiving card...). We both struggle with getting cards sent out on time; my birthday is in September. :-)

Jacki is a constant source of encouragement - as a friend and fellow "princess," and as an artist. She knows what a struggle coloring is for me (I was the last kid to learn how to color inside the lines), and along with this birthday card came a few card samples with the images included for me to copy.

It's interesting to me that in the creative arts, be it music, dance, visual arts, or writing, the ability to teach those things is not automatic. I cringed when a mom once told me that she was encouraging a couple of her children to make sure they minored in education in college so that they could "fall back" on teaching if they didn't get where they wanted to be. I hated anything to do with visual arts or athletics for most of my life, and I suspect that the teachers I had in those areas had gotten their degrees not out of a passion to teach and inspire children, but to "fall back on." They lacked patience, and the ability to bring out what little ability I might have had. Teaching is a gift, and a good teacher makes all the difference.

All that to say, Jacki is gifted as an artist and as a teacher. I am so blessed to have her friendship!

Saturday, November 15, 2008

...All flowers keep the light

This card was sent to smARTworks for the contest that used to be held quarterly for free stamps. However, due to lack of participation, the contest is no longer. Susan Trask, the owner, kindly gave gift certificates the one other participant and me - just in time for her new release of stamps, here.

I used opalite inks (I just love those), and when the light hits the card, the shimmer is wonderful ... pictures just don't capture it. The flower in the center is covered with tiny, no-hole glass beads.

Friday, November 14, 2008

A Partridge (???) in a Pear Tree

I wasn't really happy with the colors I chose ... or the quality of the markers I had on hand ... but this card really does look better than the picture shows it; that clashing red is actually a dark pink.

BUT ... at least I did not take forever to color the card. Normally I take ridiculously long choosing the colors for a project like this. But this time, I decided to just use whatever color seemed right without over-analysing. So, in a sense, it was a good card for me, even though I won't be selling it or giving it to anyone. It also made me realize that it's time to get some decent markers, lol!

This stamp comes from Eureka, and shipping is free this month!

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Our light has come!

A camera without batteries is rather useless! Our rechargeable batteries seem to have died, so although I have a couple of cards, I can't photograph them, and they don't scan well. So, I thought I would post this card, my favorite from last year. With time being short before the Houghton Christmas craft fair, I need cards that are either simple, or in this case, duplicates of ones I've made before. I really don't like to make the same card more than once, and when I do, I try to alter it at least a little bit. But I was really pleased with this card, and fortunately, I made an extra circle image last year, so I won't bother altering the design!

The gold embossed circle is colored with opalite inks. When using these on embossed image, apply sparingly; the opalite ink will cause the embossed portion to break down. :-(

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Watoto Children's Choir

We're having company stay the night tonight: Three teen/pre-teen boys and their "uncle" (chaperone), part of an exhuberant and inspiring group of orphaned children from Africa. Watoto came to our church two years ago, and it was a wonderful time! We had three little girls and their "auntie" for that visit, and the auntie was incredibly inspiring to my three teen children who were home. She spent the evening after the concert encouraging them in their faith to choose a deep walk with God instead of a shallow one. They still remember it...

The Watoto Children’s Choir’s have toured internationally since 1994. These choirs bring a message of hope to many parts of the world which include countries such as Uganda, Australia, Canada, UK, USA, South Africa, Brazil, Israel, Germany and France. The choir is made up of children who are part of Watoto’s program.

Accompanied by adult choir leaders from KPC, Watoto’s performances are a soulful blend of African rhythm, contemporary gospel and ethnic dance. Through their music the choir share their unique stories and express their new found hope. The children’s energy and sincerity continue to inspire audiences all around the world.

The choir performs to present Watoto’s vision and to give audiences the opportunity to respond to Africa’s HIV/AIDS and war crisis.

‘Concerts of Hope’ are a lively demonstration of the life changing love of God experienced by the children of Watoto.
This experience, gives the children exposure to other cultures broadening their world view. It gives the children confidence and boldness and helps them to rise up out of their own situations of sadness and despair.

Monday, November 10, 2008

Last of the quilt cards!

This one is probably my favorite, even though it's one of the simplest I did. I had a really, really hard time choosing a text for it, until I happily remembered this stamp from smARTworks. Perfect!

Saturday, November 8, 2008

Time does not erase...

Surprise visit tonight from one of my college children, oh happy day! Off to visit with her some more...

Friday, November 7, 2008

Well with your soul

I was thinking of the hymn, "It is well with my soul" when I created this stamp. If you don't know the hymn and the story behind it, I hope you'll click on the link and read about it. Knowing the tragedy of the writer of those words, would remind anyone receiving a card like this that even in the worst of the worst circumstances in our lives, we can have that "peace like a river," that assurance that God is in control, and has not forgotten us...

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Live Life in Color!

This card turned out a bit bolder than I expected, so I layered it accordingly! This text stamp from smARTworks was just right for it!

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Thank you quilted cards

I am very low on thank you cards, so this was a great pattern for them!

I mentioned in my last post that I might try doing just basic stripes. As you see, I did so with the pink card. It was so much easier than the really quilted patterns I had done earlier. The basic square quilt panels were also much easier.

Top thank you is Eureka, bottom two are Stampin' Up.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

"Cuttlequilting" tips

I so liked the look of this technique, that I decided to make a couple more panels ... and ended up making five! Crazy, as I have the next three weeks tightly scheduled to be ready for a craft fair I do at nearby Houghton College. But, I just got carried away ... and it was a great distraction from the election tensions! :-)

The sun was going down before I realized that I had not actually finished any cards, so I grabbed the first panel, this yellow one, and tried it with the black panel on a yellow card. Too busy. I expected black to be the best color, but after moving the panel back and forth between the two colors, I decided the sunny look of the yellow was the better choice. The camera photos seem to favor the black, but that might be the background colors. At any rate, I thought it was interesting how different each look is! Tomorrow I'll finish this card.

Anyway, in the process of making these, I decided I'd write a list of tips:

1. Use a piece of cheap cardstock as a base. Actually, use two: one for the background layout, the other to transfer those pieces one by one as you glue them. Layout is important because you don't want an edge that is a tiny sliver of a color, it tends to look like an error.

2. Make the cardstock at least an eighth of an inch longer and wider than you want the finished product. Then you can trim the edges of the scraps. Much less time consuming than trying to piece them flush with the edges.

3. When creating your layout, it will go much easier if you use repositional glue instead of just laying down the strips/pieces. Much more stable to work with, and easier when you decide you need to switch any pieces.

4. Make sure that you don't forget to note the size of your embossing folder ... you want to be sure the entire panel, including any edge you might want embossed, will fit in the folder.

5. Consider any images you will be putting over the top of the quilted panel: if a large part will be covered, you might want to make a mask about a 1/2 inch in diameter smaller, to temporarily affix to the spot it will be placed; if you have a complicated design, it will save time! I have to confess I kept forgetting to do that with mine, though most of them needed the entire panel done anyway.

6. If you've glued a piece on a little crookedly, don't worry. Just glue the next piece slight overlapping the angled piece; it will not be noticed. Even if it seems a little obvious as you are working, once the panel is cuttled it won't be noticeable. If your mistake is in having the strip angled inward, then a little marker in a coordinating color will take care of that.

7. Print papers are easily roughed up when embossed if the panel is too thick, so keep that in mind if you are planning to emboss a panel behind the quilted one.

8. This can be really time consuming; try to cut multiple strips together, don't obsess about perfectly straight lines, etc. Punches can make nice squares to save time. Tomorrow I'll post a card in which I just took one piece of paper, and attached a few punched squares. Very fast! Hmmm... I think I'll make one last panel as well with just strips of paper...

9. Notice on the card that the busier the pattern, the less the embossing shows. So be sure to include some really basic, near solid papers.

Monday, November 3, 2008

Quilting with Cuttlebug

In the midst of my hurry to finish cards for my pastor and his wife, I suddenly got the idea for this card. I didn't need another card; I had already made or selected the ones I was going to give them. But I couldn't help myself, lol! Being last minute, it was too late in the day for much natural lighting, so the photograph is not the best quality. But it really does have a quilteed look to it. The card was a little time consuming, but extremely easy to do. And a great way to use up scraps! :-) I just glued the scraps onto a piece of cardstock, trimmed the edges, and sent through my cuttlebug.

Saturday, November 1, 2008

Birthday grace

I used the faux batik technique to create this card. The stamp is actually a border stamp, not a background, and I really enjoy using it.

I coupled the two text stamps together because it's just so easy, at least if you're over 35, to think of birthdays in a negative light, when really, I think the older we get, not only do we have more wisdom, but I think as Christians, we become better able to recognize how gracious God is and has been to us. Anyway, those were my thoughts as I put this card together. One of my panels was a bit messy, but that enabled me to go ahead and cut it up to get the individual flowers. While faux batik is relatively easy, it can be time consuming, so if I hadn't made a messy panel, I wouldn't have wanted to cut out the flowers, lol! I used an autumn Kaleidacolor pad to cover the embossed panel. After using the roller, I sponged on extra color where needed.

Tip: I was first embossing in clear on cream, but it was very difficult to see where to place the continuous border images, hence the messed up panel. I got smart and pulled out white cardstock, and used craft vanilla, so I could see what I was stamping!

Just to show another way a border stamp can be used, I made what looks like a background panel with this same stamp. I embossed two sides, then covered the ends with post-it paper, and embossed the other two sides. I really thought the corners would show a messy overlap or gap, but it really looked surprisingly smooth.