Saturday, April 15, 2017

More Sympathy Cards

Sympathy cards are difficult to make - especially since they come upon you all unaware and unprepared.  I'd like to tell you that I made these cards in an effort to be a little more proactive, but those in my social, familial and professional circles have all experienced loss recently.  It has felt a little like being in a boxing ring.  I have become clearly aware that they only productive and useful thing that I can do in the face of death is to pray to the One who is able.  Able to comfort, strengthen and heal.

These two cards were made with a combination of stamps and dies.  Using my retired Heartfelt Creations Delicate Aster stamps in black Archival Ink on Bristol I was able to color the images with my Zig Clean Color markers and add just a hint of glitter pen.  The sentiment was stamped using the same black Archival Ink and my Hero Arts Prayers stamp and die set.  I think the result is stunning and hopefully comforting, letting them know how cared for they are with something made using lots of care.

For both cards, a simple sentiment on the inside where I write my note.  There have been too many of these lately...

Art in all it's forms is a reflection of God's love - He created and painted this world with beauty to remind us of who He is.  I sent these cards with the same intention - created and painted with beauty so that those of us left behind could remember there is good when we are hurting from the loss.

My instinct is to apologize for getting somber, but I'm not going to do that trusting this blog community with tender feelings and knowing that one of the best parts of the community is the fact that we encourage one another.  Thanks to all for your encouragement through comments on my creativity.  It has meaning and I am grateful.

Wednesday, April 12, 2017

Blessed More Than You Know

I had mentioned that I made some thank you cards as a gift to my grandma on her 90th birthday.  Since we'd held a birthday party, I knew that was a gift she'd use immediately and that would be a gift she appreciated.  We've spent the better part of the last several weeks moving her and my grandpa into a new home here in Arizona and so I knew she didn't need one more thing!  I used my Honey Bee Bless Your Heart stamp set for the sentiment - in simple Archival black ink and my Altenew Vintage Flowers stamp set to adorn these cards since it matched the invitations I had made for her party.  I used the same Simon Says Stamp inks (Soft Navy, Surf Blue and Willow) to make the flowers and leaves.

On the inside, a simple sentiment in the Soft Navy ink.  I know she appreciated the gift - I had to make an additional 5 cards so she could finish sending her thanks around the country!

Sunday, April 9, 2017

Celebrating 90 Years - A Milestone Birthday Card

I've been traveling for work... long story.  Anyway, I wanted to get this card posted so I am popping in today sharing the birthday card I gave my Grandma on her 90th birthday.  You might remember these invitations to her birthday party that I made to send out.  I thought I needed to go in a different creative direction just to make her feel good.

I used my Concord and 9th Happy Day stamp set to make this card.  The cake stamp was inked using brown ink on Bristol paper.  This was so I could color the image with my Zig Clean Color Real Brush markers and a waterpen.  I finished the image with a little glitter pen to make some shine - you can almost see the glitter on the flowers.

I fussy cut the image out - getting much closer to the edge than the matching dies would do.  I used some fun foam to back the image so that the image would be evenly raised.  The banner is raised using two toothpicks I had on hand.  .  Both the banner and the sentiment are from the Concord and 9th stamp set.  They make milestone birthdays easy to celebrate!

On the inside - a simple added wish with a sparkle heart.  We had a fantastic time at the party and the follow-up dinner on her actual birthday.  I am so very blessed to have both my material grandparents with me to celebrate on such an occasion.  I ended up making her a set of Thank You cards for her actual gift.  I'll try to get those photos edited and posted soon.

Friday, April 7, 2017

Living Happily Ever After

My grandparents celebrated 71 years of wedded bliss last month.  We ended up going out for dinner to celebrate and I was rushing to finish a card to let them know I was thinking of them.  I snapped this picture in the car on the way to the restaurant.

Sorry that it is a bit blurry, but I really like how my Heartfelt Creations Flowering Dogwood stamp and die cut flowers turned out.  They are so adorable in person and a perfect focal point for this simple designed card - something to celebrate such a long marriage.  I'm looking forward to taking my time with these flowers on a project in the near future and ultimately taking a better photo of the card so you can see how lovely these flowers turn out.

I've always loved dogwood flowers.  My mom hung a picture in the bathroom that I grew up in that had this poem:

In Jesus' time, the dogwood grew 
To a stately size and a lovely hue. 'Twas strong and firm, its branches interwoven. For the cross of Christ its timbers were chosen. Seeing the distress at this use of their wood Christ made a promise which still holds good: "Never again shall the dogwood grow Large enough to be used so. Slender and twisted, it shall be With blossoms like the cross for all to see. As blood stains the petals marked in brown, The blossom's center wears a thorny crown. All who see it will remember Me Crucified on a cross from the dogwood tree. Cherished and protected, this tree shall be A reminder to all of My agony."

The author of the poem is unknown and the truth of its words are murky at best.  Still, I enjoyed the poem and the pretty picture with it.  These dogwood blooms are a reminder to me of this simple poem and the fact that I can recite the poem to this day.  

Tuesday, April 4, 2017

Birthday Balloons

Here's another of Brandy's cards that she made for her "birthday season".  On this card, she used Distress Inks, Victorian Velvet, Evergreen Bough and Antique Linen, to color the balloons die cut using her Mama Elephant Party Kit Creative Cuts dies and also to create the soft watercolor background.    The stars on the background and Penny Black Sprinkles and Smiles sentiment are embossed with gold powder- the edge of the sentiment piece is also embossed.  I think the tied string holding the balloons is so clever and adorable - this card is really special and I'm sure the recipient thought so too!

Here's hoping your week is going well.  Enjoy!

Saturday, April 1, 2017

A Set of Sunshine Cards

I decided to play around and make a few notecards as a stress reliever.  In this case, I used an old technique from my Creative Chemistry online card class - Distress Highlight Stamping.  Only I didn't use any Distress Ink this time.  I simply stamped with white ink onto Kraft paper and then used my colored pencils to color the white ink.  This allows for a handmade look to the stamped image.  I had to give up a little on the perfectionist side of me, but it is good to let her have a nap once in a while.

I white embossed the sentiment using my WPlus9 Hand Lettered Hello stamp set.  It was the perfect offset to this image and these A2 sized cards.

I finished the card front using a stitched die - just a straight edge that created some interest so I could keep the card simple, but also a bit dressed up.

These notecards will go in the stash and probably end up a gift at some point.  They served their purpose during a stressful time - giving me a creative outlet and using some of those supplies that have long gone unused.

What do you have in the stash that needs to see the light of day?

I'm linking this card up to the following challenges:

City Crafter Challenge Blog Week 355 - In Bloom

The new-to-me Try it on Tuesday challenge: Botanical

Thursday, March 30, 2017

Flowery Birthday Card

In my family, my husband refers to October, November and December as birthday season.  We have quite a few of the family birthdays in a short 8 week period right around the holidays.  Brandy has a birthday season of her own, but it occurs around March and so she's been on a roll lately.  I get the pleasure of sharing this lovely with you today.

The flowers were stamped in Copic friendly ink onto white cardstock using WPlus9's Doodle Buds stamp set.  Brandy colored the flowers and leaves with her Copic markers and used some foam tape to raise the flowers making them 3D.  The sentiment is from the same stamp set.  Such a bright a beautiful card - its a great choice for a spring birthday card, don't you think?

Since she's on a roll, I'll have more Brandy creations to share with you just as soon as I edit the photos and get them posted.  Stay tuned!

Meanwhile, I'm linking this card up to the following challenges:

City Crafter Challenge Blog Week 355 - In Bloom

The new-to-me Try it on Tuesday challenge: Botanical

Monday, March 27, 2017

A New Home

I'm back today to share a change of address notification card that I made for my grandmother.  They recently moved from Colorado to Arizona and now live 12 miles from me.  Yay!  I couldn't resist the urge to combine stamps from my Papertrey Ink Winter Village stamp set with my Art Impressions Foliage stamp set to create this lovely scene.  The inks used are also Papertrey Ink Dark Chocolate, Simply Chartreuse, Soft Granite, Sweet Blush and Lovely Lady inks.

I printed the text out at FedEx again with their white, matte cardstock.  This makes it easy to handle and stamp over.  I die cut the image out with my WPlus9 Sunshine Layers die to create that fabulous stitched frame.  All in all, I think it pleased her to send out this card to her friends and family.  Moving at 90 (my grandfather is 92) is a daunting task and making these for her to show off was a pleasure.

I'm entering this card in the following challenges:

City Crafter Challenge Blog - Through the Window since my house has quite a few windows!

Word Art Wednesday's challenge - Week 274/275 Anything Goes

Hope your week starts off with a bang!

Saturday, March 25, 2017

Recycling a Thank You

Since I've been a bit busy, I thought I'd throw together this cute little thank you card.  The bear with his sentiment was given as a thank you in my Ellen Hudson order and I just couldn't throw him out.  I cut away the signature and added him to this patterned paper and ribbon from the stash - very simple but great use of recycling.  Hope your week ends spectacularly.

Welcome Home

I get the lovely opportunity to share this card made by Brandy today.  She needed to wish a friend a happy new home and this card is her work of art.  So full of fun details to catch your eye.  Brandy used the Art Impressions Cottage and Die set along with her Zig Clean Color Real Brush markers  on Bristol paper to create the image.  That's her handwriting in the sentiment folks...Such a wonderful way to wish someone a brand new start in their home, don't you think?

I'm entering this card in the following challenges, you should stop by and check it out and maybe even join the fun!

City Crafter Challenge Blog - Through the Window since the house's window features so prominently!
Simon Says Stamp's Monday Challenge - Layer it Up as Brandy used a combination of die cuts, coloring and stamping to create the different layers on this card
Word Art Wednesday's challenge - week 274/275 Anything Goes

Have a spectacular weekend.

Friday, March 24, 2017

Do Unicorns Love Rainbows?

Brandy sent me the lovely card as a thank you.  I can't decide what I enjoy more - the rainbow of colors?  The epoxy heart "tattoo"?   The glitter paper?  Oh I could go on and on.  It's ever so lovely such that I felt really special and know the depth of Brandy's care!

Wednesday, March 22, 2017

Sympathy Cards II

I'm back today sharing some more of the sympathy cards that I made.  These used an iris stamp that is just lovely in it's design - perfect for sending love and care over the miles.  The background of this card is more of the aged gold embossing powder that I used on the flowers from the cards I shared earlier this week.  

I switched up the design creating a frame for the flowers and leaving the background brighter.  It's hard to think brighter when loss is so near, but I truly wanted to give the recipient something to hold in their hands which expresses my love.  I'm praying this worked...

Sunday, March 19, 2017

Sympathy Cards

We've had our share of losses this past month.  This makes for an unusual time of support and encouragement to others.  It is one of the reasons why my blog posts have slowed so considerably.  With more than one reason to make them, I'll be sharing a few sympathy card designs with you.  This set was made using my Concord & 9th You are Enough stamp set on Bristol paper so that I could color with the Zig Clean Color watercolor markers.

The Zig markers make coloring easy and the final product very pleasing - a small mercy that I can send to let loved ones know I care during their time of grief.

I kept the background of these cards simple - letting the flower be the focal point and a simple, heartfelt sentiment on the front.  The flower is heat embossed with some aged gold powder - softening the edges and yet adding some definition to the card.

I'm sorry to say these are all used up and I had to make more.  Yet, in our fast paced world where things move pretty fast it is one way to demonstrate care across the miles to spend time making something to express your love.  That's what I can do now...

I'm entering these cards in the following challenges:

Simon Says Stamp's Monday Challenge : Handmade Flowers
Word Art Wednesday's Challenge Weeks 274/275: Anything Goes

Sunday, March 12, 2017

Celebrating 90 Wonderful Years

My grandmother is turning 90 years old later this month.  What a wonderful time to have a celebration!.  I stamped these lovely cards following the general layout of these cards I created last year using my Altenew Vintage Flowers stamp set.  The inks are all Simon Says Stamp (Soft NavySurf Blue and Willow).  I printed the sentiment out at Fed Ex where their matte finish white cardstock is perfect for stamping.  I simply layout the sentiment with a mock rectangle for aligning the die when cutting using Word.  The printer at Fed Ex is always a solid print and resistant to smudging during die cutting and stamping.  The inside of the card was created the same way, just using different stamps.

I'm entering this card in the following challenges:

Simon Says Stamp's Wednesday challenge: Simon Says For a Special Lady
Word Art Wednesday's challenge: Week 272/273 Anything Goes

We can't wait for the celebration which will be in a few short weeks.  I am so very blessed to be able to enjoy this celebration and looking forward to the time with family focused on such a dear, lovely grandma.  I'm off to get some more crafting done as making these consumed a large amount of time.  Hope your weekend is filled with crafting fun!