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 and you can find my NBUS Challenge online. I hope you'll join in the fun there! Thanks for coming by! Have a beverage and enjoy!

September 29, 2020

Playing With PP

Hello Stamplings!

No, not pp as in patterned paper this time. This time the PP stands for Perfect Pearls! If you're like me, you have some small jars of powder pearls in various colors tucked away in the back of the book shelf or drawer.

I got together over Zoom last month with a group of friends for some crafty time, led by Lolly. This month we got together again and we are going to try and make it a monthly thing, which would be awesome. The first month we played with a very current trend and this month we played with a very old trend. I think in future sessions we are going to continue revisiting those products that we've had lying dormant or that we don't use as often as we'd like.

I was able to put together three designs with my PP play. (I beg your pardon?) As usual, the camera can't quite capture the shimmer and sheen of the pearl paints, but you get the idea.

Onefer
Using butterflies from "Butterfly Birthday" by HLS, I created this birthday card. The butterflies were gold heat-embossed and by adding water to the powdered perfect pearls, I painted the inside bits. After class, in homage to Seize the Birthday's challenge logo, I added a fussy-cut, popped-up purple butterfly and a gold heat-embossed sediment by PTI filled with yellow. Hammy went wild schplattering to his heart's content.

Challenges

Twofer
For our second play, we painted again with PP, this time onto die cuts. I used a Penny Black die, that much I remember. But I don't remember the name. This happens a lot, so this time I put the die in a Safe Place to refer to when I wrote up this post. As I'm sure you know, a Safe Place is one of those good thing/bad thing principles. The good thing is that the item placed there will not be disturbed. The bad thing is its capacity to erase itself from your memory if you don't retrieve it within 48 hours. Oops. ETA: Thank you, Brenda. The name of the die is "Berry Flourish."

The leafy swirl looks rather dull unless you turn it to the light and then the glimmer is gorgeous. I used the die cut on a Christmas card with a dark green panel, a schparkly sediment and a gold mat.  

Threefer
The butterflies for this design are from Hampton Art. This PP technique is a simple one. You stamp the solid layer stamp with Versamark and then stamp the image onto your colored or black paper. Then you dab the Perfect Pearls onto the image and the PP clings to the Versamark ink. You brush away any excess. Then you stamp the second layer stamp with Versamark and then stamp over the first layer on your card. The Versamark on the second layer "lifts" the PP off the first layer, leaving the detailed image. You set the powder with a fine mist of water. 

[It's hard to describe how to do a technique when the same word is used as a noun and a verb! I was making a card so I took my stamp and stamped my image. I biffed the stamping of the stamp, so I stamped my foot. Once I corrected the biff and finished the card I took it to the post office where the nice lady placed a stamp on it and afterwards, since I was there, she stamped my passport.]

But I digest. I also used PP on the sediment. By simply painting PP with a large brush over a panel of colored paper, I made handmade glimmer paper. After drying, I die-cut the Believe, which is a Simon Says Stamp die. I was tickled to find that snippet of pp, er, patterned paper, which matched so well. I covered the seam with a "ribbon" of thin platinum Washi tape from Altenew.

As you can see, it was a productive Zoom play date. We also smooched with PP, but that card will be revealed another time. If you would like to visit the blogs of my Zoom playmates and see their schimmery creations, here are the linkies: BonnieBrendaChristineLoll, and Susan.

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Thought you might get a smile out of this piece of mail I received the other day:
No, it wasn't a large handmade card, thank goodness, but seriously?

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Enjoy your day! No, seriously, enjoy, but please be safe out there! 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!)

September 24, 2020

Happy 75th Birthday, Nancy! W-O-W!

Hello Stamplings!

Who needs a break from all the worrisome and exhausting events happening around the world? You do! 

Well, I do, that's for dang shur! And if you do, too, then there's a virtual birthday party happening at Stamping With Loll's blog in celebration of the 75th birthday of our dear friend Nancy of Scandinancy Creates!! Lolly is having an InLinkz party for two weeks, so you can make Nancy a birthday card and link up to join in the fun!ğŸŽ‰

This is my card for Nancy:
Altenew makes some of the most stunning Washi tapes in gigundo rolls and I fell in love with this leafy delight. I don't know if you can see, but it is shot through with gold! For this design, I added a stitched frame, a sticker butterfly from the stash I'm trying to use up, and a fun sediment strip.

A few weeks ago I made 38 cards using my roll of this tape. I think I came up with ten different designs and here are a coupla three of them:
Have a spectacular milestone birthday, Nancy, and many many more! Mwah! Here is the cake Hammy and I made you! It's your favorite, with, of course, some bubbly!

Twofer
I love W-O-W (white-on-white) card designs. I think they are so fine. But when I go to make one, I usually start getting twitchy and want to add a little pop of color, eyeballs, a gold star, something. Not this time! This time I stuck to it and my left arm is in a sling from vigorously patting myself on the back!😇

There are only three ingredients: The NBUS framed scene with stag is "Deer Snowflake Scene" from Cottage Cutz; the two snow-laden whimsical crookedity trees are from Dee's Distinctively; and the die-cut Be Merry sediment is from GKW. The trees and sediment were made with snippets of white.

Challenges
=
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Enjoy your day! No, seriously, enjoy, but take care and keep well! LITS!*
Bizarro Comics
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!)

September 17, 2020

More Twofer Trees!

Hello Stamplings!

Well, whoosh, that week went by faster than a smudge drying right in the middle of your beautiful almost-finished card! But we want it to go by fast, right? Because #2020 can't end fast enough! Lucy explains it better in faces below.

We are a week into the current Twofer Card Challenge #31 already! The theme is TREES. I've made this set of reminder inspiration cards for you:
The cute doodly little tree stamp that my cards have in common is a NBUS stamp a thousand years old and I have no idea who the manufacturer is. It's fun to finally be able to come up with not one, but three, designs using this funky stamp.

Onefer
I love this rainbow colored new home card and can't wait to have one of my friends move so I can send this out. (Are you moving?) It seemed fitting to use one of my equally ancient wood veneer images on the card. The sediment is from the "Sweetest Somebunny" set by MFT. 

Not enough texture, dementia, and interest for you? No worries, Hammy glossified the beweesus out of the trees:
Challenges


Twofer
For my second design, I created a QACAS birthday card using a pretty textured remnant of Char Truce paper and a sectional die cut from a friend. The outer Pointed Rectangle Frame is made by Poppystamps. The vertical sediment is from Stamps by Judith. 

Challenges

Threefer
I mean, I just had to, right? If I had a Marie Antoinette dress, I would have used it because it would have been more fitting then this little number from Simon Says, but you use what you have. The world is so flippin' crazy right now, I will do anything for a laugh, even if I have to karack myself up!

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I hope my Twofer cards have inspired you to play along this month at the Twofer Card Challenge! Mwah!

Finally,
I think a lot of us started September back in March! And speaking of funny, if you haven't watched the "Cooking With Cade" video, you have to go to the bathroom and then watch it. Wait. What? I don't mean you have to watch it in the bathroom! I mean you will laugh so hard tears will run down your legs, so go potty first. I've lost track of how many times we have watched it!

~~~

Enjoy your day! No, seriously, enjoy, but keep safe and well! 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!)

September 13, 2020

For You

Hello Stamplings!

I hope you're doing okay today.

This is my inaugural launch of the New Blogger, so if anything looks wrong, it's not my fault, their fault. I finally gave in because when I reverted to Legacy and came back just five minutes later, they had switched me to New Blogger again. We played that game of Tag You're It about 30 times and I finally gave up. There was a time when I was ornery enough to keep clicking back til I'm blue in the face, but now, shrug, ain't nobody got time for that.

It seems New Blogger was created to make it easier for people to blog from their phones, which is the way of the future. Unfortunately for some of us, blogging from our phones is impossible due to eye problems and/or arthritis in our hands and wrists, so we just have to be grateful they are still making a laptop/computer platform available for us to enjoy while we can. Sala Vee.

To be honest, it isn't as bad as when I first tried it, so they have fixed quite a few things. If you are hesitant or if you tried it once, please try again rather than giving up if you enjoy blogging. We will help each other through the transition and to that end, I have a couple of questions after my cards.

Onefer
My friend Nancy Leppek has started a new challenge blog called Color Hues and I wanted to make sure I got a card made to support her. I'm very becited to have this new challenge in Blogland and she has a very talented Team working hard to inspire us! 

I kept my design very simple so the yellow and green colors could be in the spotlight. The beautiful butterfly die is "Delicate Butterfly" from Memory Box and  I cut several layers to give it more dementia. The layered stitched squares are from MFT, the little NBUS tag is also from Memory Box, called "Classic Tags," and the sediment is from Creative Time, "Teeny Tiny Greetings."

Challenges
  • Color Hues: Yellow and green.
  • NBUS #18: Never Before Used Schtuff.
  • Pixie's Snippets Playground: Anything snippets goes.
  • Retro Rubber: Also colors! The butterfly die is from 2019, the stitched squares are from 2015, the little NBUS tag is from 2011 (what?!), and the sediment is from 2012.
Grab our badge to display on your blog. Snippets Playground BadgeRRCB 143
Twofer
This design was a bit of struggle. I wanted to try embossing with dies and I really liked a video I saw where the card had both the usual embossing with a folder (evergreen branch from Stampin Up) and embossing with a die (evergreen tree from Taylored Expressions).

First, I dry embossed with the embossing folder. Check. Next I watched several videos about embossing with dies, but they all used the Big Shot and I wanted to know how to do it with my Gemini Jr. I did find one video, but the sandwich the lady showed did not emboss for me. It cut through the paper when I tried it and mustard went everywhere. Three hours later I still didn't know, but I saw lots of other interesting videos when I veered off onto Squirrel Alley. 

I finally got out my Big Shot and was able to emboss without the die cutting the paper. Check. Then I gold embossed the sediment, rimmed the edges of my panel with gold ink, and then attached it to a gold panel. 

Hammy and I thought it needed a little sumpum sumpum, but nothing too busy like sequints, so we decided it would be pretty to add another tree to that little empty space just waiting for it. We dressed it in gold, and stacked it six times.
I'm sorry I didn't ground my trees. There was just too much snow everywhere to get in close to them. Of course, the tree and sediment don't even look gold above, so here's a closeup to prove it:
Challenges
jingling all the way!Right Click to Save
~~~

You might have noticed my images have a sort of sepia glow to them. That's because of the smoky haze, or smaze as one of our weathermen calls it. At least it's not weirdly red anymore, but our smaze is still thick and for several days it has been at the very unhealthy 180-200+ mark. Now they are saying it won't be safe to go outside until next Tuesday. I feel so sorry for all the critters. And, of course, poor little Nellie doesn't understand why we aren't doing walkies any more. 
~~~

New Blogger Frustrations: [Already tried to find answers via Blogger/Google black holes.]
  • I've discovered that I am no longer receiving notifications of blogs to which I am subscribed, including challenges. Has anyone heard if this is temporary, or if we have to resubscribe to blogs, or what the blazes? 
  • Does anyone know how to wrap text around images in New Blogger so they can be placed somewhere other than centered? For Nellie's photo above, my hack was to revert to Legacy to place the photo. Then when I went back to New Blogger, it stayed to the left, but I don't know how long Legacy will be around. 
Thank you!

~~~

Enjoy your day! No, seriously, enjoy, but stay safe and well! 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!)

September 10, 2020

Twofer Trees!

Hello Stamplings!

How are you? I'm sorry to have been gone for a coupla weeks. We took the charter up to Alaska for a few days just to get away from the triple digit temps and smoky air. 

Then I woke up and realized I had been dreaming. And then I couldn't find my mojo. I know a lot of you have been struggling with loss of mojo since the damnepic started. When you're dealing with Covid, isolation from your family and friends, mad wildfires, unhealthy air, politics, and new blogger, it's a struggle. Then I think about what I would be doing with my time if I didn't have this hobby and my gratitude returns and my mojo juices start flowing again.

Thank goodness, considering I needed to make my Twofer cards to share today because it's the 10th of the month and time for the September Twofer Card Challenge! This month our fun prompt is T🌲R🌳E🌴EğŸŽ„S!

Together
The NBUS stamp my two QACAS (quick and clean and simple) designs have in common is "Snow Dust" by Penny Black.

Onefer
For this Thanksgiving card design, I used my favorite direct-to-stamp technique in fall colors. I added a sediment from Stampin Up and then I cut the panel with a fishtail tag from PTI. And I used ribbon! It's also from Stampin Up. Lastly, I adhered the panel to a festive orange card base.

Challenges

Grab our Badgeour take-away banner

Twofer
My second design is an OLC winter birthday card and it uses the entire wooden stamp in all its beautiful snowy glory. I heat-embossed the trees and sediment (from PTI) in platinum and then Hammy suggested I platinumize a border all the way around the card to keep his eyes focused. Thank you, Hammy. It's a feature I love to see on a card, but I forget about doing.

Challenges
SPREAD THE CRAFTY LOVE - grab a badge!SPREAD THE MERRY LITTLE LOVE AND GRAB A BADGE!
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I hope you'll get the opportunity to play along this month! The challenge is open until the end of day on September 24th. Remember you can simply use the same tree as a conventional tree on both your cards as I have done today, or you can make one conventional and one unconventional design. Just enjoy and have fun with it!
Please click over to the Twofer Card Challenge to see the amazing and inspiring Twofer cards our talented Team and our Guest Designers Helen and Lisa have made for you!! Thank you for your continued enthusiasm and support! Mwah!

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Backyard Wildlife Habitat

In other news, I captured a coupla Opposites photos for you this week. We have lots of yellow finches nesting in our Oleander trees and they fly down several times a day for a refuel of water, especially on these hot and smoky days. 

(Pardon the quality of the photos which were zoomed with my phone through the Playhouse window.)
Then imagine my surprise (and the surprise of the finches!) when I looked out later and saw this!
We believe it's a Coopers hawk. She stayed there for almost a half hour, long enough for us to worry that she might be injured or fell from a nest too early. But then she gracefully lifted off, flew to the fence, stayed there for several minutes waiting for her tail feathers to dry and then off she went. It was really cool considering we don't live in the country! (I'm sure Lizzy and the scads of other fence lizards we've seen this summer don't think it's all that cool!)

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Enjoy your day, take care, and keep safe! But still, 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!)