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. Note: my Privacy Policy can be found at a tab below. Thanks for coming by! Have a beverage and enjoy!

January 13, 2019

A Winter Birthday Bokeh

Hello Stamplings!

Happy winter time birthday to all of you born this month! Well, I don't mean literally this month, but you know what I mean, in January. I hope you don't get the short end of the stick because people are either partied out after the holidays or they're on diets! That wouldn't be fair! Call me and I'll help you celebrate!

To start with, I made you a card.
I just love the seasonal Hills set from Papertrey Ink. The above image and sediment are from the Winter Hills set, stamped onto a watercolored panel. After I laid down my colors, I quickly dabbed the paint with a tissue to give me soft pastel hues. Hammy added a few water schplatters.

For even more fun, I added teeny tiny glass beads, which I recently found, to the snowman and rooftops. We had a bit of an incident with them. I had placed a few in a lid to pick up and apply and Hammy accidentally stepped on the rim of the lid, which sent the little teeny balls rolling all over my desk, which sent him flying into my lap!

Wasn't that great fun?! Well, yes, for sure, but a hamster mama has to draw the line or next thing you know, she'll slip on the ones that hit the floor, break a hip, and then where will we be?! Once I splained all that, Hammy smiled and went quietly into my shirt pocket while I spent an hour chasing down all the little schpheres.

Challenges
Grab our NEW badge!Banner to take away
Twofer
For this card, I die cut a PTI fishtail scalloped banner out of a Brusho watercolor panel and following videos on the technique, I added circles to give the banner a bokeh effect. It was very hard to photograph because some of the circles are light and shimmery which affected the exposure of the whole card. To get that shine, I put a little shimmer spray onto my craft mat and applied it with a dauber. The sediment stamp is also from PTI. I wanted the bokeh to be the star of the show, so I left the rest of the card very simples.

If you haven't tried vodkeh bokeh, I recommend you watch the videos listed on the CAS Mix Up site and give it a go!!

Challenges
~~~

Follow Up on Front Panel Cards

The other day I asked what you thought about receiving cards that were card fronts only with the greeting written on the back and sent in an envelope to protect the artwork. You know, like they did in the olden days with greeting cards. I should have noted that this idea was mainly for those of us who send out dozens or hundreds of cards in a year. When I make one or two cards, I instinctively reach for a card base from a small stack I've made up in advance. It's at the holidays or when I need to make 43 birthday cards in one month, not to mention all the other occasions in that month, that all those card bases seem like a lot of paper! 

Here are the results:
      123rf.com

    • Several of you were concerned because you like to display the cards you receive, so that was a deal breaker. Although others readily allowed that backless cards could be either clipped for display or leaned against something, so that wasn't a deal-breaker for them. 
    • I did find out from two friends that there is a die out there for a stand that can be attached to the back of a card front for display, similar to the brace on a picture frame. Unfortunately, I think it would take me just as long to make and attach the brace as it would to slap the card front on a base ~ and the brace would prevent me from being able to write on the back, which is important to me.
    • A couple of you like to have more room to write messages than on one side, so the idea wouldn't work for those situations.
    • For some of you backless cards don't appeal because you enjoy taking the time to decorate the inside of the card as well as the front.
    • Some of you noted that an extra layer would have to be attached to the back of the card fronts when Copics bleed or desktops are messy and stain the back of the front panel.
    • Another noted that we wouldn't be able to use our "handmade by" stamps and it would be more difficult to send checks or cash.
    • Another mentioned that backless cards should only be sent to fellow card artists because non-card-making friends and family wouldn't understand. I think we all agree with that.

    The consensus was that most of you would be fine with it and even thought it was a brilliant idea. The overall feeling was that it would definitely save time, postage, and trees, and it's lovely to receive happy mail in whatever form it comes! We are always delighted to know someone is thinking of us!

    Thank you all for your thoughts and helpful insight!
    ~~~

    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 scrollingClick 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 a pop-up box opens. Click "Jump to Comment Form" and wallah, no more car pool tunnel! Mwah! (p.s. If you ask me a question in your comment, please remember to leave me your email address so I can respond. Thank you!)

    January 10, 2019

    Playing With Birds - Twofer #12!

    Hello Stamplings!

    How are you? Is your day just starting or are you getting ready to shut down for the evening? I suspect that no matter what happens to us throughout the day, we all like to do the same routine when we wake up each day and go to bed each night. There is comfort in that.

    Before I turn off the computer at night and get ready for bed, I play a coupla computer card games. They say you shouldn't go to bed directly after having screen time (unless "screen time" is an ooh-phemism for something else😚), but those card games signal my brain that it's done for the day. My shoulders relax, my eyelids get droopy ... hey, sorry, wake up, you haven't seen my cards yet!

    The theme for this month's Twofer Card Challenge is BIRDS!
    The stamp that both my cards have in common is "Pecking Order" by Carolyn Shores Wright for Stamps Happen.
    My onefer ...
    I stamped the image on creamy watercolor paper and painted it with my Ziggies. This is a vo stamp that I continue to love every time I use it. This time I added the sediment by using a smile e/f as a border. On the inside, this card will wish someone a happy birthday ~ with a smile!

    Challenges
    Our Badge
    And my twofer ...
    To make this fun second design, I stamped the same image on a snippet of paper and then I Ziggified and fussy-cut the top bird to use. I die-cut the card base and added the bit of snippet behind the aperture which I sponged with a cloud stencil. Then I added the Peek-a-Boo Wonky Stitched Frame from MFT and perched the fat little robin on top of the edge.

    I added one of my favorite snarky sediments from River City Rubber Works and handed the card over to Hammy for winking:
    I'm sending this card off to encourage someone who could use a belly laugh waiting for her in her mailbox.

    ~~~

    How will you play with your bird stamp, stencil, or die to make two different cards for two different occasions? I can't wait to see!! Please check out the Twofer blog for all the details and to see the fantastic double designs created by the talented Design Team and our two amazing Guest Designers this month: Izzy and Sonja! Thank you!
    ~~~

    Oh, hold up one sec. I had so much fun with the Pecking Order image, it reminded me I had this great Bluebird image from Carolyn Shores Wright which also fits the snarky sediment perfickly:
    I liked the way this turned out so I made a threefer to share. But don't be confused: this threefer is not a Twofer because the designs are identical!
    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! Thank you, also, for your support of my Twofer challenge! 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 scrollingClick 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 a pop-up box opens. Click "Jump to Comment Form" and wallah, no more car pool tunnel! Mwah! (p.s. If you ask me a question in your comment, please remember to leave me your email address so I can respond. Thank you!)

    January 6, 2019

    The World is a Wonder!

    Hello Stamplings!

    Happy Sunday! I am making amazing progress in my CAP proceedings! That's Clean and Purge. (Haha, sorry, I have Aacckronymitis!) When I've taken a break to surf your posts, I see that a lot of you are doing the same. It's all very revitalizing, isn't it?

    Of course, you know this means the Big House will be next. We did a complete remodel in 2007 and I just realized that the small cupboards over the refrigerator have not been opened since then! Obviously, I don't need to keep whatever is up there and it's not the only crevice that should be emptied. My new thinking is that empty shelves are okay. Just because I have room for something doesn't mean I have to save it for Justin Case!

    But that's not why you called. Even as much fun as organizing is, I can't help but stop and get a card fix every now and then. Here's a quick Onefer I made to keep my toe in.
    Using an MFT stitched circle, I die-cut a hole in some glossy paper. Then I masked off a panel and sponged circles using a stencil, a large dauber, and Oxies. I die-cut a globe die from MFT out of pp and glued it in place inside the circle. Hammy helped by lightly washing the sea with blue. 

    The MFT globe has words underneath (it's a one-piece die) that says, "You mean the world to me." I didn't have room to put all that under the globe, so I scrambled the letters to make the word "wonder" and attached them to a strip of vellum.

    Challenges
    • CAS Stencil: Sponging. This is a brand new challenge by the talented team of Loll and Bonnie and it is another fun one! I hope you will check it out for all the details and a list of four great video links!
    • CAS(E) This Sketch.
    • City Crafters: You mean the world to me. I'm sorry to report that this challenge is closing after nine years. Thank you to Kirsty and her talented Team for all their hard work, wonderful inspiration, and fun challenges over the years! You will be missed!
    • Less Is More: Water.
    • Pixie's Snippets Playground: Anything goes, as long as you use your snippets!

    Take it, it's yoursSnippets Playground Badge
    ~~~

    An Idea

    I was wondering how you would feel if you received a handmade card that was just a beautiful card front with a written message on the reverse, like a postcard, except that it would be enclosed in an envelope with a stamp on it so you would still have the fun of opening an envelope?

    Not counting one-layer cards, I'm thinking that the most fun I have making cards is creating the front and not the part where I have to prepare and score a card base to attach it to. If I skipped that step, I would be saving lots of time and trees. It especially seems like a good idea for batch-making birthday cards and Christmas cards because I make so many of them.

    What are your honest thoughts? Have I lost the plot or am I a genius? Would you be offended, or feel short-changed, or do you think I might be on to something?

    ~~~

    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 scrollingClick 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 a pop-up box opens. Click "Jump to Comment Form" and wallah, no more car pool tunnel! Mwah! (p.s. If you ask me a question in your comment, please remember to leave me your email address so I can respond. Thank you!)

    January 2, 2019

    Happy New Year 2019!

    Hello Stamplings!

    Hmm, this is a rather disturbing start to a new year in terms of my mental antiquity, seeing as how I'm a day late sharing my Happy New Year card with you. Hopefully some of you won't notice I'm late because you spent yesterday gleefully crafting while your hubby was enjoying a whole day of sports on TV!

    What happened was, I went looking for something that I was pretty sure I had, but I couldn't remember which cupboard or drawer it was in and as I moved this bit and shuffled that bit, a crapalanche happened and I only just crawled out a half hour ago to write this post.

    So here you go ...
    The happy die from PTI is ages old and cut from linen paper. The New Year sediment embossed in platinum is NBUS from Lawn Fawn and the little bow tie is NBUS from Memory Box. The background panels are a glossy patterned platinum and a beautiful metallic blue.

    You can see the purdy sheen better in this photo:
    Challenges
    SPREAD THE MIXED UP LOVE - grab a badgeBanner zum mitnehmen
    ~~~

    I'd better get back to my mess. I'm so glad it happened because there is something about the start of a new year and a clean slate that gets me excited about starting my spring cleaning now. I'll be back in a few days and please don't worry about Hammy. Ever since that Purge of '08, I always take him up to the Big House for safe-keeping with the Mister! 

    ~~~

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

    I hope this is your best year yet!

    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 scrollingClick 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 a pop-up box opens. Click "Jump to Comment Form" and wallah, no more car pool tunnel! Mwah! (p.s. If you ask me a question in your comment, please remember to leave me your email address so I can respond. Thank you!)