A site for my handmade cards, accompanied by my photos and written meanderings which are occasionally witty, often tongue-in-cheek, and rarely profound. Beginning in June 2013, you'll also see lots of NBUS, which is an acronym I coined for Never-Before-Used-Schtuff. Feel free to join in, use the acronym, and use up your NBUS too! Thanks for coming by! Have a beverage and enjoy!

February 27, 2015

DJKASEing Kleenex

Hi there!

Thank you for whooshing through another week to get here ~ whoops, don't look now, but you also whooshed through the second month of the new year already! Gulp.

I have a card for you today that I've been wanting to make since Kleenex brought out this pattern in several colors. Yesterday Comcast, our cable company, had a major malruption of my computer and phone services, so with all that time on my hands, I finally did this:
I mean, I just HAD to make a DJKASE of that Kleenex box pattern in one of my favorite color ranges.

The papers are SU and GKW and PTI. The angles that look black are really navy. The little flag banner is a Framelits die from SU and the sediment is by Waltzingmouse. The die I used to cut all the patterns is this one by Lil' Inker. It's called "Cover Up Die: Pieced Chevron."
I even remembered to do the inside. The sediment is an ancient stamp by Penguin Parade and the bricks are by Lawn Fawn called "Interlocking Backdrops."
And this is how my desk looked after wards:
As you can see from the large pile, I will be making LOTS of pieced cards, which my empty stash desperately needs. And, yes, don't judge, there are still items under the pile from the cards I made in my prior post. I gave Hammy the day off clean-up duty after he helped me come up with that idea to heat emboss my cover plates and dies.
Challenges
 
Simon Monday Challenge BlogSimon Wednesday Challenge Blog
Please Grab Our Badge!Grab button for Uniko Studio Challenge

Click on the links for details on rules, sponsors, and prizes and to find tons of inspiration!

~~~

New Friends Corner

I am so pleased for you to meet these new friends:

Lili Sulastri of One More Take. Lili started blogging in 2012. In addition to being a wife and mother, Lili works in an office. Lili loves photography as a major hobby and she uses her beautiful photographs to make outstanding scrapbook layouts. Her attention to details and bright and vivid colors and patterns really accentuate her photography talent!

Kamila Routsis of Life in Moments. Kamila lives in Denmark, where she moved from the UK, but she was born and raised in Poland. She started blogging in 2013 when she discovered the art of card making and card-making blogs while checking out You Tube videos. Kamila now makes her own card-making videos on You Tube, participates in challenges, and serves on design teams! Her colorful card art will inspire you!

Tracy of Small Smackerells (love that name!). Tracy started blogging in - are you sitting down? 2005!! That makes her a founding member of The Online Stamping Community! (I just made that up, so don't go Googling it.) Tracy's cards are CAS, delightful, and impeccably made. Needless to say, you will find enormous inspiration so take a six-pack of something along and get comfortable!

Thank you for joining, ladies, and welcome to the Playhouse!


~~~

Enjoy your day! No, seriously, enjoy.  LITS!* 

As always, thank you for coming by to visit the Playhouse and special thanks to you if you take the time to leave a comment and/or join as a follower! Please let me know you came by, so I can be sure and return the flavor!
  
 
*Life Is Too Short!

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February 25, 2015

February 2015 PTI Blog Hop and More

Hallo and Welcome to the 25th of Another Month!

That means it is time for the monthly blog hop at Nicole Heady's Papertrey Ink blog and it's time for the monthly Christmas card Rudolph Day hookup at Maureen's Scraps of Life by Scrappy Mo blog.

So using PTI products and my own Twofer Campaign, I made these:
Nicole suggested that we use the quatrefoil die (or the like) over a watercolored background, like this, smooshed or otherwise:
Blog Hop Inspiration
photo credit: Micklyn via society6
I was curious to see if I could apply Versamark ink directly to a die in the same way that I would with a stamp and then heat emboss the image. I'll be darned if it didn't work! Here are the two dies I used. The large one is the PTI quatrefoil cover plate die and the small one is the PTI text block Christmas die.
Details

For this first one I used the faux watercolor technique that you've seen me use often of late, where you ink your stamp or your acrylic block, mist it, and then stamp it to paper. I am currently sorting through my Mt. NBUS and labeling schtuff and I had just come across the PTI "Birthday Style" set, so I thought I would juezz up my card by adding a sexy corner squiggle. Then I cut a fishtail flag, walked the edges around a marker, and stamped the sediment from SU. Wallah!

Wait. What? It turns out that the PTI Birthday Style die makes three squiggles if you don't break the die apart, and so naturally Hammy started fiddling around with adding another squiggle in the corner ... or maybe in the other corner ... or on top ... or hey! I cut another set and made a mirror squiggle because to me it looks like a giant holly leaf. Yes? In an arty-farty way? If you squint at the squiggles?, she asks, cocking her head to the side.

In addition to the PTI Blog Hop and Rudolph Day Challenge, I'm also entering my card in these challenges:
GRAB OUR BADGE!


~~~

For my twofer card, I wet a piece of watercolor paper and swirled on my cheap dime-store watercolor paints. I don't like that the pattern looks a bit like a map of the world, exspecially because of all that ocean turquoise blue, but that's where the colors wandered, so that's what I went with. It's very unlike a map of the world close-up IRL.

Also, the embossed Christmas text script is hard to read in photos, but is very clear and pretty IRL. I thought I would be arty-farty with this one, too, in the use of my colors. And also, the middle raindrop is light pink IRL, but it looks lavender on screen. The raindrops are from Crafty Notions.

The card base is embossed with a Craft Concepts e/f called "Stately." True story: I saw this folder on my friend Cathy's blog, so I asked her who made it and she told me. I was able to find it online, but only via Amazon UK and it could not be shipped to America. So I emailed my friend Di and asked her if she would buy it for me and mail it to me, which she promptly did.

Are we a cool supportive community of friends or what?!

Challenges

Our Badge
Simon Monday Challenge Blog
~~~


Enjoy your day! No, seriously, enjoy.  LITS!* 

As always, thank you for coming by to visit the Playhouse and special thanks to you if you take the time to leave a comment and/or join as a follower! Please let me know you came by, so I can be sure and return the flavor!
  
 
*Life Is Too Short!

To open the pop-up comment box that let's you jump to the end w/o scrolling:
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If you ask me a question in your comment, please remember to leave
me your email address so I can respond. Thank you!

February 23, 2015

Time Mite Emit Item

Hello again!

Aren't words so fun to play whit? And aren't Mondays wonderful for starting a week off fresh?!

So, let's get right to today's program because I know you have that other thing. As perusal, I had no plans to make a card, but then I was visiting one of your blogs and I saw a really fun sketch and then I was visiting another one of your blogs and I saw a really fun theme and the next thing I know the hamster is revvvving up the wheel and away we go!

Inspired by circles and clocks we made this:
The white mat is embossed with a Cuttlebug e/f and attached to a smokey shadow PTI card base, which you can't hardly see in the smokey shadow setting. You will notice that I have an unembossed panel set inside the embossed panel on which to stamp my sediment. That unembossed panel was created by using a Darice "Easy Frames," which I learned about from my friend Ardyth at the Lake House and am only now getting around to using. Tsk.

The sediment is from Tim Holtz "Journey." The top clock is an unmarked stamp I have. I attached it to a notched circle die from PTI, which I painted with watercolors. I also painted the other two wooden veneer clocks to give them a bit of an aged Pat Ina.

Challenges


Grab Our Badge!PPA240
The challenge links will direct you to the challenges for details on rules, sponsors, and prizes and so you can see the wonderful inspiration from the design teams!

~~~

I made card number Dos Equis while I had my wooden veneer clocks out on my desk, using a die cut flower that was also laying there. With those ingredients, naturally I made a "clock flower." Isn't there such a thing in Wonderland or somewhere? Actually, I recently learned that dandelions are called clock flowers from my friend Anita, but I'm not sure you can tell that it's just gone past four o'clock on a dandelion. Can you?

Well, pretty much, yes. I'm editing this to add that I've heard more from Anita, who says: "You’re supposed to be able to tell the time (to the hour) from the number of puffs of breath it takes to blow all the seeds off the seed head (and so annoy any keen gardeners in the vicinity)!" So that's why they are nicknamed "clock flowers!" Perhaps, like me, you have learned something new today! 

Here is my daisy 4 o'clock flower:
The card base is made from blushing bride SU textured paper. The daisy flower die is a Sissix die. The water-brushed and penciled stem and leaves are from PTI's "Rosie Posie" set. The timeless sediment is from Hero Arts.

I am also entering this card in the TIME OUT Round The Clock challenge and since I used snippets for my daisy, I'm taking my whimsical (some might say fahreekie) card over to Pixie's Snippets Playground.
Grab Our Badge!Pixies Crafty Workshop
~~~

New Friends Corner

Today I am delighted to introduce you to two more friends:

Julieanne ... aka Pinkjools of Julieanne's Cabin. Jools started blogging in 2012. She began making card art over a decade ago when she couldn't find a special card she needed. Jools and I have a lot in common because she, too, has an outdoor building in her garden just for her hobby, which she calls her "Cabin." You will find fun inspiration when you visit Jools. Among other ideas, her cards are so inspiring for designs using patterned paper!

Sandy of Sandy's Scrapbookin's. Sandy works full-time, is the mother of three, is an avid scrapbooker, and is the administrator of at least two scrapbooking blogs that I have seen, as well as her own personal blog, which I can't seem to access at the moment. Phew. Is it just me or do you need a nap now, too? That is so very impressive to me and I think you will find Sandy's works of art to be impressive, as well!

Thank you for joining, ladies, and welcome to the Playhouse!

~~~

Enjoy your day! No, seriously, enjoy.  LITS!* 

As always, thank you for coming by to visit the Playhouse and special thanks to you if you take the time to leave a comment and/or join as a follower! Please let me know you came by, so I can be sure and return the flavor!
  
 
*Life Is Too Short!

To open the pop-up comment box that let's you jump to the end w/o scrolling:
Click CTL + Home. 
Click the Home tab under my blog banner which resets the post.
Click Page Down to reach the end of the post.
Click Comments and the pop-up box opens.
Click Jump to Comment Form; no more car pool tunnel! Mwah!
If you ask me a question in your comment, please remember to leave
me your email address so I can respond. Thank you!

February 21, 2015

Year of the Shrago!

Happy Chinese New Year!

There is a bit of confusion over what animal sign is associated with the year 2015. Some say it's the Year of the Sheep. Some say Year of the Goat. Some say Year of the Ram. Apparently, we have options this year because those are all the ways "yang" is translated into English. So I propose we say it is the Year of the Shrago.

In the Year of the Shrago, you will find your Mo Joe Juice will be flowing at new all-time high levels of creativity. Bravo!

All this is my way of reminding you that I am guest designing for a wonderful challenge going on over at Inkspirational with a photo that has an Asian influence. We would love to see you participate! There are many floral designs you can come up with even if you don't have any traditionally Asian stamps, plus there are always digital images available.

I have more inspiration for you today. (Did you get your beverage? Okay, good.)

So last week when I was doing my original card for Inkspirational, I heat-embossed two "Love" symbols on the pretty origami paper. The first one you can find here or on the Inkspirational site. I thought for this second card, a butterfly I found in my drawer would make a nice accompany mint:
Rather than a Spellbinders rectangle die for embossing, for this card I used a rectangle mat die, which I believe came from PTI. It's a perfectly fine card, right?

Well, ahem, yesterday I thought I should deepen the grooves of my embossing to make it more pronounced, so I reached for an angled thingie that I have in my carousel for doing rub-ons. It was a bit dirty on the end, but it looked like it would work, so I took my metal ruler and grooved.

Aacckk! It turns out, gasp, that wasn't just some stain on the end, it was dog-gone INK! Sah-lap! What a dumb-dumb! INK! That'll make you drop a thing like a hot potato and fly backwards in your chair!

Well, hey now, it was too pretty to throw away, so I just inked the whole way round to fix it:
I even like it better. Here's a close-up of the sheen and shine:
And there you go. I do hope you will play along with the Inkspirational Challenge in any way that inspires you!

I'm also entering:


We'd love you to display our banner
And, then, since whenever I see a butterfly, I want to play in Mrs. A.'s Butterfly Challenge, I looked across the pond to see the brief. Beg your pardon? This month we are to use a ribbon with our butterflies. Well, chile, there is a blank space inside that rectangle in that lower right sweet spot, so ho ho how about this?

Grab My Button.
~~~

Part Two

Now let's turn our attention to a more whimsical card. It turns out I don't have an image of a Shrago. Nor, (I don't think) of a Goat or a Ram. But I happen to have a NBUS sheep from Paper Smooches!
This card makes me grin. I like the current CTS sketch, so I started with that. Hammy pointed me to my star collection, which made no sense, but when I opened the drawer and worked my way to the back, I found this awesome bit of ribbon I've had since the last century. It's gorgeous IRL, so that became my band and, well, I have to admit, stars and celebrations DO go together!

I then did an acrylic block watercolor background using the same colors in the ribbon. I stamped the sheep on the dry watercolor and fussy cut it. Then I made a stitched oval using my Lil' Inker dies. My NBUS sentiment from the Stampendous set "Retro Ornament Set" was laid out on an acrylic block before stamping so that it would curve to fit the oval. Then I popped on the sheep and punctuated the design with a little star cut from my watercolor paper using my NBUS Framelits dies.

Once I took the photo, I realized that I really should have embossed the card with the stitches, too, so I ran it through my Big Shot to do just that. Here is one without the stitches:
And here is one with the stitches:
 
I felt like I was too clever by half when it worked! Erm, well, not really. Unfortunately, it squished my oval panel and now it looks like somebody took that wool and put it in the washing machine and now it's a too-tight sweater over those pop-dots! Oops.

I am entering my non-squished Year of the Sheep card in:
~~~

Part Three

I am trying to make two cards for every one card and, as it happens, I had just enough of that pretty ribbon to make one more card, thusly:
 
For this card, I used a different sketch (below). I used a stitched circle instead of an oval and cut it out of craft foam and I used a kookoo bird instead of a sheep.

The birdie is really new NBUS. It is the result of another instance of enabling, except this time I can't remember who did the enabling. The stamp set is by Tim Holtz, called "Bird Crazy." There are six birds in the brood and you will be seeing all of them. They moved in here and immediately hit it off with the hamster!

For this card, I did a little cosmetic surgery on the head and tail feathers and then I colored her with my colored pencils. The "Hey" is also NBUS from Avery Elle. The eyeballs are, I think, from Darice.

Once again, after taking the photo, I wished I had stitched the card base, so I popped out her eyeballs and ran her through the Big Shot. Here then, is the "after" shot:
That's better, no pop-dots to squish on this one. She nails you with that look, doesn't she? You're not quite sure if that's a "Hey, how's it goin'?" or a "Hey, whadder you lookin' at?" Or, maybe a "Hey! Why did you squish me?"

Challenges
  • Freshly Made Sketches: Sketch
  • Cure For the Monday Blues: Photo Inspiration. (My first time here.)
  • The Card Concept: Photo Inspiration "Get Well Soon." I was inspired by the stars. My card is clean and simple and if it doesn't bring a smile to someone not feeling well, they are badly sick. Like in a coma.
  • Shucks, I missed the Feathered Friends challenge at The Paper Players.
Any of the challenge links will provide you with information on rules, sponsors, and prizes!
~~~

Enjoy your day! No, seriously, enjoy.  LITS!* 

As always, thank you for coming by to visit the Playhouse and special thanks to you if you take the time to leave a comment and/or join as a follower! Please let me know you came by, so I can be sure and return the flavor!
  
 
*Life Is Too Short!

To open the pop-up comment box that let's you jump to the end w/o scrolling:
Click CTL + Home. 
Click the Home tab under my blog banner which resets the post.
Click Page Down to reach the end of the post.
Click Comments and the pop-up box opens.
Click Jump to Comment Form; no more car pool tunnel! Mwah!
If you ask me a question in your comment, please remember to leave
me your email address so I can respond. Thank you!