Monday, October 31, 2016

Much Delayed Costume Share

I received these photos from Brandy of her costume efforts with her niece at last year's Halloween celebration.  They were lost in the pile of unedited pictures until a couple of months ago.  I always meant to share with you and thought today would be a good day to resurrect them.  Don't you think they did a fantastic job between costume making, hair, make-up and can you believe that handcrafted crown?  Perfect in every way!

Are you or someone you love dressing up tonight?  I don't have anyone at home, so my days are over for now.

Happy Halloween everyone.

Happy Halloween

I'm stopping by today with a quick share from my friend, Kyle.  She works at a local elementary school library and each year they have a contest where the adult teachers and helpers paint pumpkins like kid's book characters.  Then they display the pumpkin and the book as a way to entice the children to read.  I think it terribly crafty way to encourage kids to read.  You might remember Kyle's Grouchy Ladybug from last year that she was so gracious to let me share with you.  This year, Kyle let me share this photo with you today and I think we should all laugh out loud at her fabulously toothy pumpkin and her contagious craftiness.

Hope your night is spooktacular.

Friday, October 28, 2016

A Floral Birthday Card

I'm stopping in today to share the card that I made for my mom's birthday which she celebrates today.  Pink and navy blue are her favorite colors.  She recently traveled to France, where apparently there is a lot of navy blue wearing going on.  She actually returned, exclaiming - "I found my people!".

Considering my mother's birthday and this recent infusion of navy, I decided to go into the pink realm this year using my Altenew Peony Bouquet stamp set.  I used some masking paper to cover the flowers and leaves in order to layer the images.  The ink I used here is actually MementoLuxe Love Letter, a proposed red ink that actually stamped in this gorgeous shade of pink.  Disappointing when you are trying to get red, but lovely when you are shooting for pink!

I will warn you that the MementoLuxe ink did not go down smoothly.  For all the stamping, I used my MISTI stamping tool and stamped multiple times in order to get the look I achieved.  This sentiment on the inside of the card was stamped easily 4 times.  This is the brilliance of the MISTI, that you can reliably re-stamp in exactly the same location, ensuring perfect stamp success.

Ultimately, I was so enamored by this card that I made a couple more for the stash.  I'll probably gift them to someone as gift giving season is approaching.  I also have a crafty surprise for my mom's gift, but want to hold off sharing with you so that she doesn't get a sneak peek.  Stay tuned.

I'm entering this card into the following challenges:

Simon Says Stamp's Wendesday Challenge: Anything Goes

Word Art Wednesday's Weeks 254 & 255 Anything Goes

Wednesday, October 26, 2016

A Perfect Little Card Set

I decided to make some cards for the stash to be used as gifts in the coming weeks/months as birthday season and the holidays come roaring in.  I couldn't resist the urge to break out my Altenew Peony Bouquet stamp set.  The inspiration for these cards is this Pinterest pin.  I was enamored by the soft colors of the card and wanted to try a few different techniques.  Here's my result.  I hope you brought a strong cup of coffee or tea, because this post is picture heavy.

I stamped each image using the outline version of the flower and the two different shaped leaves using embossing ink and white embossed the images onto Strathmore watercolor paper.  I did this multiple times on a sheet of paper approximately 5 x 8 in. and scraps leftover from other projects for the leaves.  This is a great way to use up those scraps and make something pretty with them. Each image was watercolored outside the lines using my Mission Gold watercolors.  I used a lot of water and tried not to fuss over where the color moved to.  As such, some of the flowers are prettier than others, but I like them all.  After the watercolor is completely dry, I die cut the images using the matching dies.

For the background, I die cut some Strathmore Bristol paper using my SSS Stitched Rectangles die.  I stamped the sentiment using my Concord and 9th By Your Side stamp and Memento London Fog ink.  I used my MISTI stamp tool to stamp repetitively until I had a crisp, grey sentment. I knew I wanted to watercolor the background so I cut another piece of Bristol paper ;and did a wash of color in each corner of the paper.  This seemed to light and plain, so I splattered some gold watercolor from my Gansi Tambi Starry Colors watercolor set.  That was just the look I was going for.  

My only remaining problem is that the card base was a more brilliant white than the Bristol which is a bit off of white.  I decided to edge the white cardstock base with some of the gold watercolor.  At first I didn't like the "splotchy" nature of the edging, but it has grown on me and now I think it the perfect, sparkly accent to my centerpiece flowers.

This card set is going into the stash and will definitely be a gift to someone in the near future.  I'm so pleased that I see more peonies in my future.  Stay tuned!

I'm entering this card into the following challenges:

Simon Says Stamp's Wendesday Challenge: Anything Goes

Word Art Wednesday's Weeks 254 & 255 Anything Goes

Altenew's October Inspiration Challenge - I linked up the yellow flower since the colors fit the inspiration.

Come join the fun!

Monday, October 24, 2016

A Concord and 9th Card Set

I'm back to share the results of my creative endeavor this weekend.  Recovering from travel for work, I threw myself into some watercoloring and this is the result!

I'll remind you that I used my new (to me) Concord and 9th You Are Enough stamp set and my Mission Gold watercolors to create the focal image on these cards.  Producing a small set is easy - it lets the images dry a bit and I can go back, fixing mistakes and enhancing color where I desire.  I probably watercolored all of these within a 2 hour period - taking my time letting the work act as therapy!

I stamped each image in black archival ink using my MISTI in order to get a very crisp edge.  I kept the simple image from my test case and decided not to add glimmer or sequins, instead die cutting the image out using my WPlus9 Sunshine Layers Die and layering over coordinating pinky, red solid cardstock.  The sentiment was stamped in black Archival Ink and clear embossed to make it stand out.

I'm just so please with this entire set - a ton of fun to make and a joy to gift to someone on their special day.  Which one is your favorite?

Saturday, October 22, 2016

You Are Loved - A Concord and 9th Stamped Card

All that fall coloring and I just couldn't resist going back to more bright, summery colors.  Mainly this is because I wanted to use my new (to me) Concord and 9th You Are Enough stamp set.  The Mission Gold watercolors are never very far from my crafty table anymore and I wanted to spend a little time last weekend before traveling out of town for work.  The creative activities distract me from the stress about work.  Can you see it - my wonderful distraction?

Here I stamped in black archival ink using my MISTI in order to get a very crisp edge.  I then colored the image with watercolors rather than the provided layering stamps.   The colors are so pretty - even more so in person.  I thought to add glimmer or sequins and decided to stick with simple - die cutting the image out using my WPlus9 Sunshine Layers Die and layering over coordinating pinky, red solid cardstock.  The sentiment was stamped in black Archival Ink and clear embossed to make it stand out.  This picture doesn't do it justice, but it is a strong sentiment.

I've stamped a few more images and plan to color them when I return home this weekend - almost there folks, and a creative release is coming my way. Hope your crafting is just as productive and rejuvenating.

Thursday, October 20, 2016

More Fall Cards

So, once I'd broken out the Brushos a set of cards poured out of the creative chemistry that I had going.  On these three cards, I used the dies and stamps from the Hero Arts September 2016 Monthly Kit that Brandy gifted me.  I can't stop gushing about her generosity because I've so enjoyed working over the past couple of weeks with these supplies.  I once again created the watercolor background with my Brushos watercolor crystals.  I sprinkled the different colors onto the paper and spritzed water from above.  I decided to work a bunch of different fall inspired color combinations.  Teal was probably my favorite, though the purple is close behind!

I'd forgotten how satisfying it was to work with the Brushos which move and sparkle all on their own.  These pictures do not capture the vibrancy of the colors on the card, which is a great offset to the plain features of each of my die cuts.

Since I'm working with fall colors, even when the Brushos got a bit muddy like at the top of this background, it worked well with the kraft cardstock base and the brighter colors as accents.

I'll probably gift this set to someone during this season of birthdays and hope they have as much as I do to be grateful for.

What do you have to be grateful for - in your life or in your crafty space?  Mine are too numerous to name here, but I'm more than grateful for my Brandy.

Tuesday, October 18, 2016

Floating Above the Clouds

Brandy shared this wonderful card with me and I get the joy of sharing it with you.  She used balloon stamps to begin the card and the rest of the art is her own free hand watercoloring.  Just about the time I think the magic is in the clouds (which are perfect!), I'll focus on the mountains and I am facinated by the depth of color and texture and shading in those mountains.  To top it all off, theres a bit of Wink of Stella glitter on the balloons.

All in all a perfect notecard.  I only wish work didn't keep Brandy so busy because every card she makes stuns and inspires me.  Join me in telling her so!

Sunday, October 16, 2016

Our Beautiful World - Holiday

I'm joining the photo challenge over at Our Beautiful World this week where the word prompt is Holiday.   I couldn't resist joining to share these photos from our 2015 celebration.   These photos elicit a strong feeling of anticipation for this year's celebration.   It will be here before we know it!

Why don't you join our fun and post some photos of your Holiday celebrations?  It's always interesting so if nothing else, stop by to see what others have posted.

Friday, October 14, 2016

A Fall Birthday Card

I did mention earlier in the week that it is "birthday season" in our family.  Lots to celebrate this time of year - including Brandy's gifting of the Hero Arts September 2016 Monthly Kit.  I decided to give my hand at a card with a simple design.  I'm not sure this is as effective as the previous endeavors, but I was really trying to stretch out of my comfort zone.  In this case, the watercolor background was created exclusively with my Brushos watercolor crystals.  I sprinkled the different colors onto the paper and spritzed water from above.

Still, I like the design and the card is perfect for one of the men in my life - simple and colorful but not at all fru fru.

This is so much fun, I am wishing fall lasted a bit longer than it really does.  Still, it is birthday season so I'm off to get some work done so I can play some more with my Brushos and this monthly kit.

Tuesday, October 11, 2016

More Hero Arts September 2016 Cards

I'm stopping by to share some more cards made using my Hero Arts September 2016 Monthly Kit.  You'll remember that my bestie, Brandy, gifted me with the kit.  I had my Mission Gold watercolors out on the craft table (my kitchen table) and so I decided to put water to paper with color and try my hand at a couple of different color combinations.  I think this first card is my favorite - purples and reds don't always go together, but I like how they've combined with the black cardstock here.  You'll note that I also added a bit of Ultramarine Brushos to the mix - those spots of color are from the Brushos.  The sentiment comes from the stamp set in the kit that I white embossed onto black cardstock and then fussy cut out.

This second card isn't my favorite of the lot, but does include die cut colored cardstock leaves using the dies from the kit.  They are so darn cute on the card...

A shout out to my son, Timothy, who's 20th birthday is today.  I have a hard time reconciling my recollection as if it was yesterday of that night he came into our lives.  He is a joy and I wish him the best year yet!

I can see a few more techniques or color combinations that I'd like to to try, so bear with me as I work to get those cards made and posted.  I hope you are enjoying the fall as much as I am!