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 29, 2016

Eeep! It's a Leeeap Year!

Hi there and happy fresh new Monday!

And a very HAPPY Birthday to all you Leap Year Babies! I couldn't let this day go by without making you a card and acknowledging this special day that you've waited four long years for!

So this one's for you!
At first I had a frog where the sun is, what with the whole "leaping" theme, but he was bigger than the kangaroo and Hammy was frightened by that. Poor guy, perspective and introspective are very important to him. So I exchanged the frog for a sun and even got 39 cents back in change. Those clouds drifted down from Canada, a card candy gift from my friend, Lolly.

The hills are NBUS from Poppystamps called "Stitched Landscapes," the sun is from Lil' Inkers. and the kangaroo is from Paper Smooches. I made him furry by dabbing brown, beige, and copper all over him with a cotton swab. He cooed like a baby and was so patient. I made the sediment on the foregroundmost hill on my pewter and then embarrassed embossed it with a "branches" e/f.

Challenges
Pixies Crafty WorkshopSimon Wednesday Challenge Blog
~~~

 And, hey, check this out!
#6
STARTS TOMORROW!!!
March 1 - 10, 2016

Speaking of being patient, the next challenge is finally here! If you're a new player, please check out the RULES before you start. I'm looking forward to seeing how you use your NBUS!

~~~

Enjoy your day! No, seriously, enjoy! LITS!* I'll see you tomorrow!

As always, thank you for coming by to visit the Playhouse and special thanks to you if you take the time to 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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Mwah!

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your email address so I can respond. Thank you!


February 25, 2016

Feminine Pinks and Greens

GrEeTiNgS!

I didn't want to be the one to bring you this news, but I think it's best if you know so you can take a deep breath and slow down for a minute. I'm talking about the fact that March will be here in less than a week. March!

I spose if you live in a place with nasty winter climes you will be happy to hear that news, but working on our Christmas card for today's post, the happy little paws and I felt like it had only been days, not weeks, since we made our 2015 cards! I mean, give us a second! And, of course, it's even more frightening when we know what March is famous for ~ marching, right?! Oy.

I haven't played in the Papertrey Ink (PTI) blog hop for a while and the photo inspiration was too fetching to pass up. I've also not made a single Christmas card for 2016 and since the third month of the year is already breathing down my neck, nothing was going to keep me from getting the Cc ball started! So let's roll on ...

First my PTI card:
Here is the beautiful Papertrey Ink February Blog Hop Challenge photo inspiration, which I think has an Asian feel to it:
Blog-hop-logo
Inspiration
I immediately thought of my design when I saw that sweet little vase laying down on top of the circular green plate. I added the tiny sweet butterfly to my card because of the one shown in the bottom of the photo and Hammy tried his darnedest to figure out how to add a froggie, too. We finally decided to put a tiny tree frog down in the soil inside our pink vase. He seems quite happy there.

For my card I used glossy card stock for the base and over that is a single glossy layer with a stitched Lil' Inkers circle opening. (In other words, it's not a see-through aperture.) Using my Paper Smooches "Crystal Clear 3" dies, I cut a pretty pink vase from fun foam. Next I went all NBUS by using a Nestabilities die to cut the stem, a Memory Box die called "Fancy Blossoms" to cut the flowers out of pink vellum, and a stamp from the "Make A Wish" set by PTI for the sediment.

I'm also entering: the Anything Goes challenges at Simon Says Stamp Wednesday Challenge where the showcase is Memory Box products and Mrs. A.'s Butterfly Challenges, where the brief is G is for Glitter (on my wee butterfly) or Grape; and the Work it Wednesday February 2016 Simon Says Stamp Challenge, where we are to use something floral in our projects.
Grab My Button.Simon Wednesday Challenge Blog
workitwedbanner
~~~

And now for my first Christmas card of 2016:
Nothing NBUS here, slap, but this QACAS design sprungled to mind. The sediment from PTI's "Think Big Favorites #9" is heat-embossed in SU blushing bride. The watercolored Noel postage stamp image is from All Night Media. 

Yay, the first of over 200 Ccs done and dusted and I'm playing in these Anything Goes challenges:
TWOFERS
~~~

Reminders:

"Inspired By all the Little Things." I'd love to have you play along!
and

Only 4 More Days! NBUS #6!

The next semi-annual NBUS (Never-Before-Used Schtuff) Challenge is just around the corner! Mark your calendars for two weeks from today!! Wheet!! If you are new to NBUS and would like more information, please click here for the rules.

Never-Before-Used-Schtuff (Stamps, Dies, EFs, etc.)
~~~

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 join as a follower! Please let me know you came by, so I can be sure and return the flavor. I've been having a bit of a rocky time of it the last coupla weeks with migraines and a Crohn's Disease flare, but it's wonderful to have this happy community to enjoy when I'm able!

*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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me your email address so I can respond. Thank you!



February 21, 2016

Ahhh, The Little Things


Good Morning!

I hope you are having a wonderful weekend!

Today I'm presenting the last, but not the least, in a series of February guest designs and it's for something brand new, so it's a pleasure to help spread the word!

I'm talking about the new Inspired by All the Little Things card game. Right off the bat, I love the name and what the name brings to mind: life is too short, live in the moment, stop and smell the roses, don't be so impressed by the sunset that you step on the daffodils ...

Okay, I made up that last one, but you get the idea.

The creator of Inspired by All the Little Things is none other than Lesley Croghan of Always Playing With Paper. Lesley moved into Blogland back in 2009 and promptly became the Mayor of Challenges. I could list them all, but it's more impressive if you check out the resume she has on her blog here. You'll need a lie-down after you read it!

The thing is, her new venture is NOT a challenge! Wait. What? Here is how Lesley explains it:
This is NOT a challenge but I hope you will "play" along and share how you were inspired by my inspiration photo. Of course, you may not be inspired at all! But if you are...please share! 
So there you have it! Inspired by All the Little Things is a place where we can share with each other and inspire each other! No competition ~ just inspiration ~ and, of course, enabling! There's always that! Lesley has a linky tool for you to share how her weekly photo inspired you.

Here is the fun photo for this coming week:
I was inspired by the colors and the stacked cups and the polka dots in the shape of stars! How cool is that? And I happen to have some ancient pp that worked perfectly for this photo, so perfectly, in fact, that I have made a twofer for you:

First:
I used those Lil' Inker stitched rectangles again. This time my NBUS stitched ovals made their debut. As a matter of fact, everything else on the card is NBUS, too. The Poppystamps teacups were inlaid. (I sometimes call it paper-piecing, but really it's inlaying or laying in. Then there's laying about, but that's for the end of the day or your no-good Uncle Scradmer.) The banner and sediment are from the Layered Banner set by Papertrey Ink.

And my twofer:
This happened when I started gathering up the starry papers from my desk to put back and Harmony asked if she could have a go at showing her Hammy daddy what she learned in her composition sessions with him. (She's a good little learner, don't you think?)

Instead of stacked cups, we stacked paper shapes. You might think every shape of stitched die known to man has been used for this card, but not so. Nowadays you can get stitched anything on a die. The stitched star is NBUS, as is the hello sediment from Simon Says Stamp.

~~~

Thank you, Lesley, for the honor of being the Guest Designer for this new and fabulous card game! I hope to see a lot of you joining in. Play for fun and share how you were inspired by all the little things!!
 Spread the word!!
~~~

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 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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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!


Finally! NBUS #6!

The next semi-annual NBUS (Never-Before-Used Schtuff) Challenge is just around the corner! Mark your calendars for two weeks from today!! Wheet!! If you are new to NBUS and would like more information, please click here.

Never-Before-Used-Schtuff (Stamps, Dies, EFs, etc.)

February 18, 2016

Amour, Anita and a Few Hydrangeas

Well, hello again!

Look at me ~ post toasties two days in a row! I had to come back today because today is a special occasion. It is the birthday of my lovely friend and fellow BABE, Anita Raffo of My Papercraft World. Happy Birthday, Anita! I hope you enjoy your very special day!

In honor of Anita, I made this one-layer card (OLC) for the current CASEplorations Challenge over at STAMPlorations where Anita is the featured card artist!
Before I tell you what I did, just check out these THREE amazing cards Anita made! Don't they get you reenthused to want to CASE her and play along?!
CASEplorations GD2 - February 16
WOW, Anita!

For my card I used the same color schemer as Anita did and I used the same design ideas of border elements, a simple sediment, and a bit of bling. My border was made by watercoloring with my Ziggies through a "Nested Circles" STAMPlorations stencil. Don't they look like sugared citrus candies? The sediment is from "Noteworthy," also by STAMPlorations. 

I'm also entering this card in Kathy's 30 Day Coloring Challenge.
IMG_0795
~~~

And then, well, here's what happened. I went in to take a nap and I asked Hammy & Co. to clean up my desk, but when I came back they had done just the opposite. Oy. My basket of newest NBUS was tipped over and stamp sets and dies were all over the floor. 

Have you ever noticed that you can almost anagram HAMMY into MAYHEM?

As we were picking everything up, Hestor pointed out my new "Mondo Hydrangea" stamp/die set from Ellen Hutson and reminded me that the current challenge at Less Is More Challenge is to "make a one-layered card with a stem." 

You don't say? So I made this:
I stamped the image with Archival black and then did a simple watercoloring with my Ziggies. The sediment is from Uniko's "Simply Said Birthday," which I off-set to make a better composed situation. BTW, LIM is having  DT call, so head's up!

[Sometimes I get a glimpse of a brand-new-to-card-making-blogs visitor who reads my blog (or yours) with a HUGE question mark over her head! So, translation: By the way, Less is More is having a Design Team call, so head's up!]

I'm also entering Addicted to CAS where the code word is "Bloom."

We'd love you to display our banner
~~~

And then the sun came out and this happened: 
The hydrangea stamp is very large, so I got to thinking that it might be neat to just stamp it over some random wet-on-wet watercoloring and I think I thunk right. For someone who really does like to color inside the lines, I have to say I'm in love with how this turned out! It's very Shirley Bee.

I just wet my watercolor paper and used a small brush to plop drops of color and let them play. I made an ever-widening mass until when I held the stamp in the air over it, I could see that the painted section was about the right size to fit the stamp. Does that make sense? Those odd-looking line-like sections are from pouncing on the wet watercolors with a balled-up tissue. Hey, what can I say? Why not?

I waited until the paint was dry and then I stamped the flower in Archival ink. The sediment by Penny Black was stamped in SU brilliant blue. I'm entering this in the current One-Layer Simplicity Challenge. The theme is "Friend," which is where this card is headed.
OLS
~~~

There's more? Yup. It would be illegal to put the set away without making at least one card using the die, right?
I think you can see that the hydrangea is literally winked.  The background is a piece of K and Company pp from my stash and it makes me happy to use it. The sediment is from the "Year-Round Puns" set by Papertrey Ink and I think it, too, is NBUS. I know the butterfly is. It is cut from the "Small Butterfly Frame" by WPlus9 in both white linen paper and a lilac vellum.

I haven't played in Mrs. A.'s Butterfly Challenge for a long time, so I'm taking my card over there. The theme for the current challenge is, "S Is For Stamping and/or Sapphire."
Grab My Button.
~~~

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

Thanks for hanging in there through this long one! And, as always, thank you for coming by to visit the Playhouse and taking the time to 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. 
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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!!

Finally! NBUS #6!

The next semi-annual NBUS (Never-Before-Used Schtuff) Challenge is just around the corner! Mark your calendars for two weeks from today!! Wheet!! If you are new to NBUS and would like more information, please click here.
Never-Before-Used-Schtuff (Stamps, Dies, EFs, etc.)

February 17, 2016

A Lot of Hot Air!

Hi there!

I'll bet when you saw that title you thought, "Whoa boy, she's really going to be ramblin' and wafflin' today!" Really, I do go on, I know, and on and on ... so here we go ~

I'm guest designing all over the place this month, aren't I? It just turned out that way. I'm always delighted to showcase and trumpet the wonderful challenges we have available to us here in our small corner of Blogland. The design teams work very hard to keep these challenges coming!

For today's post, I am spotlighting the second half of the current month-long Serendipity Stamps Challenge as Guest Designer.

My card inspiration:
I could not wait to get my hands on this gorgeous set of hot air balloon dies and set about paperpiecing them, jigsaw-fashion, as I am wont to do. Making some of them rainbow-hued was irresistible! This set is Hot Air Balloons Reverse Die. The sediment is from Technique Tuesday. The puffy clouds are called Puffy Clouds and they are from Memory Box (also NBUS).

Thank you to Jeanne and Mary for the honor of serving as this month's Guest Designer!

I'd love to see you join in the challenge! You have until midnight February 28th to link up and there's a great prize! There is also a hop going on right now with a chance to win another prize!
Here is this month's 50% off stamp:
50% Off Stamp of the Month
I'm also entering the Pixie's Snippets Playground with this snippety card! The only brief is that you use some of your snippets, which I don't often do because I make many one-layer cards, so this was a ton of snippets used and it felt good! Join in, won't you?

~~~

Finally! NBUS #6!

The next semi-annual NBUS (Never-Before-Used Schtuff) Challenge is just around the corner! Mark your calendars for two weeks from today!! Wheet!! If you are new to NBUS and would like more information, please click here.
Never-Before-Used-Schtuff (Stamps, Dies, EFs, etc.)

~~~

Current GIVEAWAY

Don't forget the GIVEAWAYS Page at the top of the blog!

  
 This giveaway ends on February 19th.

~~~


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 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!