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!

June 1, 2022

NBUS Flower and CAS Mix Up Guest Designer

Hello Stamplings!

I hope you are doing well as we start this first day of June! Of note, today is National Pen Pal day! (You see what I did there?) Thanks to this wonderful blogging community of cardmakers, I'd like to thank all of the 200+ amazing pen pals friends who exchange awesome handmade cards with me!

The sales were insanely tempting this past weekend. Did you cave in? It was hard to resist and if you didn't resist, I hope you got everything you wanted!  

Due to a win in Febrooary, this month it is my pleasure to be the Guest Designer for CAS Mix Up!! CAS Mix Up has been on hiatus and it is wonderful to have the challenge open again! CAS Mix Up has a rotation of themes and for June the theme is "Stencils." In addition to a theme, there is a prompt for you to follow and the prompt for June is "Pastes/Gels." 

Here is my card to inspire you:
I have to tell you that when Jenny told me the theme was "stencils," I was glad because I purchased quite a few of them over the last coupla years and I even made up cool binders for them ... and then I pretty much ignored them. This was just the kick in the pants I needed to stencil again.

But then when she went on to tell me I needed to use a stencil AND embossing paste or gel, I literally gulped. Just like they do in novels.

Now what do I do? Embossing pastes and gels are another thing I got into for five minutes five years ago and then pretty much ignored. But, okay. I can do this. They wouldn't call it a challenge if it weren't challenging. And you know what? I ended up having the best time making my card. Forgive me for tooting my own honker, but I love how it turned out!

What happened first was, I blended CP Aquatini onto a white card through the NBUS round flower stencil from Funky Fossil.
Next, I applied the gel medium through the stencil. I hope you can see in some of the photos the wonderful silky "feel" that happens when the gel hardens. It is translucent, so the pretty aqua color remained.
Next I used a Poppystamps Pointed Rectangle Die to cut a frame to go around the circle. Because this is a CAS challenge, the card design needs to be clean and simple. That means lots of white space, so I cut the circle in half and made two cards. (I temporarily taped the circle back together on the back in order to take the photos for this post.)

So I held my half-circle up this way and that on my card and I finally decided to use it as a faux flap on a colored card panel. I know, I'm with you on wishing it opened up as a tri-fold, but it never even occurred to me until I saw it finished. To bring the eye in and make the design consistent, I added a matching pierced frame as a border. 

Now. What to do about a sediment? I was looking through my various word dies, when my little hamster helper challenged me to add another stencil element to really inspire everyone! Well, that was a cracklin good idea, but I don't have any word stencils ...
... so I just made one using a Hugs die from MFT! Shazambam! I used Dreamweaver Pearlescent Embossing Paste through the homemade stencil and it really worked a shiny treat. 
It's an honor to join the extremely talented group of designers at CAS Mix Up for June and I encourage you to check out their cards for lots of great design ideas ~ then get your stencil groove on using embossing paste or gel and join the gallery! If I can do it, you can do it, and I can't wait to see what you make!

Twofer
Real quick, here is another card that I made a while ago for a dear friend. I love this little mum-like stencil flower, but it's unmarked so I can't help you there. I do wish all stencil manufacturers would etch their names on their stencils. I used Gina K. Glitter Gel mixed with some Opal Magic (pink-blue) acrylic paint. The amazing sediment is from "Unforgettable" by WPlus9. Here's a closeup of the schparkle:
Challenges
~~~

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

I'm excited that I'm going to be seeing some crafty friends over the next few days and, after that, enjoying some non-crafty time with another dear longtime friend! Pray for us that Covid leaves us alone to have some long-awaited time together. Mwah!

*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!)

50 comments:

I Card Everyone said...

Congrats on your GD gig at CAS Mix Up, D!! TWO gorgeous, beautifully gel-pasted-through-stencil treats for the eyes today! LOve your ingenuity with that homemade stencil!
=] M

Julie B said...

Love the turquoise you've used here Darnell for your first card. The overall effect is of a pocket on a summery blouse or dress!
Great to see you Gding alongside moi and the rest of the CAS Mix up team, we have missed them. :)

Loll said...

Two beautiful cards, my friend! Love the pretty stenciling on the bright turquoise card. The gel adds some shine to the stenciling. Great work ... one gorgeous stenciled card. Thanks so much for Guest Designing at CAS Mix Up this month!!

Your second card is gorgeous with the mix of paint and glitter over the pretty stencil. Love it! You are on a roll! Love, Lolly

Alice (scrAPpamondo) said...

Your first CAS card is just BRILLIANT, Darnell!! Amazing design and love the stencil you used with transparent gel, great idea making a faux flap! Your handmade stencil looks great too! Congrats on your GD, so very well deserved!
Beautiful work on the second one too, who doesn't love sparkling? :)
Hugs

Karen said...

Your first card is a prize-winning CAS design. I realize that you've created it because you are already a prize winner---no surprise there! Love the color and the way you used the half circle for your card! Both cards are wonderful with the sparkly embossing paste. Enjoy your time with friends!

Carol said...

Darnell, I reeeeeeally like the technique you used to make the sparkle on your second card! I know from personal experience that it is probably even more beautiful in person due to photography! (Love that inlaid look on the first card so much, too!) I also especially like the larger sentiment and its meaning...something I am currently trying to beef up in my stash. So glad you shared your cards with us a Just Us Girls this week.

Lisa Elton said...

Toot away Darnell they both turned out great! Congrats on guesting!

Pat said...

Congratulations on being a Guest Designer over at the CAS Mix Up challenge Darnell, and I love the pretty look you have achieved using this round floral stencil. The beautiful turquoise ink and translucent paste over it giving that wonderful shine, and adding the pierced edge frame before cutting it in half to make a faux flap was a fantastic idea, and then finishing it with another pierced frame border and the stencilled sentiment made using a die and pearlescent paste finishes it brilliantly. I love the second card with the glitter gel and opal magic paint for a terrific sparkly look, and a great sentiment and background paper too. Have some wonderful crafty and non-crafty fun on your trip and hope we will see some photos when you get back. x

Bonnie said...

Love, love, love all the aqua with the shine and pretty flowers! Awesome layout too! The schparkly pink flower is so pretty! So glad you could join us as Guest Designer this month! Have a fun trip and please, no Covid!

nancy littrell said...

Oh My..Gorgeous gel medium thru your beautiful circle floral stencil, Dolly. Love your color combo and your pretty shiny die cut HUGS:-) How awesome that you got 2 beautiful cards using the Paste/Gel techniques. It is Great to be back on CAS Mix Up and being inspired by our DT, GDs and wonderfully talented friends:-) Love and Hugs...Nancy

Mac Mable said...

What an eye catching design on your fabulous Hugs card and the paste on both stencils looks amazing....Love how you made your own stencil too Darnell. Love all the shimmer on the second. Enjoy your time catching up with friends x.

Cheryl W. said...

I LOVE stenciling, and I was totally inspired by your awesome cards. Cutting the circle in half was a great idea, although I did think your card was a tri-fold when I first saw it. Now I'm going to have to see if I have any circle stencils that would work. Who knows, maybe I'll try my hand at a tri-fold. The second card is also a winner with all that sparkle. I LOVE me some sparkle, too. In fact, I know I've got some glittery stincil paste that I have yet to use on a card. I'll check out that challenge.

Christine said...

Absolutely love that you made your own word stencil!!! Top marks for initiative.
Love the blue colour.
Have a good time with your friends.

kiwimeskreations said...

Oh my goodness Darnell, you and Hammy have excelled yourselves on this stunning card - love that colour, and love how you have used it with the gel. Your home made stencil and pearlescent gel is perfect for the design of the card
The pink flower card is also amazing.
Blessings
Maxine

Faith A at Daffodil Cards said...

Love love love your cards Darnell. Beautiful in every way.

Jeanne said...

How fun, Darnell! I adore the cards you made. Love the flower stencil and your super clever way to add the word. You definitely rose to the challenge!! Yay for getting together with crafty and non crafty friends alike! We sure need that, don't we! Have fun! Crafty hugs!

HJ said...

Both of these cards are beautiful. My favorite is the turquoise one with the faux flap. Congrats on being a GD. Enjoy your day!

Nancy said...

First and foremost, both cards look wonderful! The design on your turquoise card was brilliant! Your second card for Just Us Girls looks terrific too! You have captured all the sparkle in the photo too. I hope you gals have a wonderful time and I will be thinking of you and wishing I was there! Give everyone a squeeze from me! Thanks for linking up at Just Us Girls for Photo Week!

Jean said...

Beautiful cards using stencils! Glad you are getting to craft with friends.

Em Louise Fairley said...

They are gorgeous, Darnell xoxo

Nan G said...

Gorgeous cards Darnell. Hope your get together go well and you have a smashing good time. Hugs Nan and the Girls

cuilliesocks said...

Your cards are so beautiful Darnell, I love the stencils and the gorgeous colours too, lovely texture with the embossing, Kate x

Bobby said...

Congrats on your guest designer gig, Darnell. You've made some wonderful, sparkly, stenciled cards. The first one looks like a fancy pocket flap and using your letters to make a stencil was a great idea. I never thought about mixing acrylic paint with gel the but color turned out so pretty.

My Paper Epiphany said...

I've been looking forward to getting a closer look and to find out how you made this stunner! I love the gorgeous semi-circle of flowers and love the idea of gel medium over the ink. Beautiful colour too! Your second card is also very pretty and sparkly. Thanks for inspiring us and being our Guest this month. Hugs x

Chris said...

Two beautiful stencilled cards with lovely clean designs- love the colour of the first one and your home made HUGS stencil is perfect- great to get extra use from your dies too. Fabulous sparkle on the second...anda great stamped sentiment to finish.
xx

Brenda in IN said...

So very clever to cut the circle in half and make a flap. I love that idea and the card is fabulous. The sparkle from glitter gel looks so pretty.

Gerrina said...

It is super to see you use stencils (as you know I like them almost as much as my stamps)! And what a beautiful result on both! Great way to use a die to make a stencil; I do that a lot and so you double your stash (without having to look for more place to put it :)...) Hugs, Gerrina

Leslie Miller said...

Both your stencil cards sure did turn out pretty! I love that blue and the circle cut in half. I didn't think about the tri-fold idea until you mentioned it, but that would be cool, too. I don't have any pastes or gels and wonder where in the world I would put all these things I don't have, so best to keep some restraints. The sparkle on your second card is amazing! You're making me rethink the "do I need embossing paste" question. Congratulations on your guest spot, Darnell, and enjoy your crafty time with friends!

brandco2450@gmail.com said...

Love your cards, Darnell, especially the first one! It's a reminder to me to get out the metal stencils and paste and have a go!

Heather said...

Such a great card for us, Darnell, love all the sparkly pink! Your stenciling is perfect! Thanks so much for playing at Retro Rubber!

oldpunca said...

Crafting with stencils is always fun. You've created two amazing cards. I like the blue one with gentle flower pattern and big hug sentiment. The twofer is awesome too. I like the color of the bloom. Great design on both cards. I'm glad CAS Mix Up is back! Congratulation for GD!
Hugs, Sonja

Christine Alexander said...

Congrats on being GD at CAS Mix up :) I love both cards. Such beautiful shparkly stenciled images, and love that faux envelope flap card ♥

Sue's Crafty Corner said...

Two gorgeous cards Darnell. I love the colour of the top one. Enjoy your crafting with friends and like you I hope that Covid stays well away from you all.

Sue xx

Sandra H said...

Absolutely stunning cards Darnell l just think your stencilling is amazing perfect in every way love the colour too, your blue card and the floral top is another stunner xx

Linda said...

It's so nice to have you as a Guest Designer this month, thank you for joining us at CAS Mix Up! and thank you for the fabulous inspiration.
Love the pretty stenciling on the turquoise card, and the sheen from the paste shows it off even more. Such a clever design and a great way of adding your sentiment too.
I also love the touch of sparkle on your second card .... so pretty! xx


Stamps and Paper said...

Two stunning cards Darnell

Anne

Donna said...

Congrats on guest designing Darnell! I like your stenciling and how you made a topper, great idea and beautiful card. The shimmer and message on your second card is "amazing"

Bobby said...

I forgot to thank you for sending your lovely pink card to the Just Us Girls gallery, Darnell.

Claire Grantham said...

Darnell, my friend it has been far too long since I swung by your blog (waving at Hammy). Happy Pen Pal day to you too!! I love both cards, the sparkle on the RR one is lovely. Thanks for joining us at Retro Rubber this time. Clairex

Cat Craig said...

Darnell, Congrats on the GD and the win. So good to see this challenge back up and running. Your cards are da bomb! Love the cool color of the first and the bit of patterned paper peaking from the edges of your second. Great points of interest.Hugs.

frommycraftroom said...

Two fabulous cards. Love the blue and your home made stencil. I too have a special folder that rarely gets opened let alone used! Glad to know I'm not alone :)

As for the second one thanks for reminding me where the sentiment comes from - I knew it however I couldn't place it - I don't think I've ever inked that particular sentiment - I know I'm not alone there and it's not the only stamp in my ever growing collection that hasn't seen ink!!

Susan Joyce said...

Two wonderful cards Darnell, such a striking design on your first card, love the turquoise and white and the pretty flower design is lovely. Thanks for joining us as CAS Mix Up's Guest Designer this month, the win in February was well deserved.

Pia S said...

It’s a clever thing to make to half circles to give your card a clean look but also a nice looking layout. Personally I find it easier to design with parts of a circle rather than a full one and especially if it has some size. Nicely coordinated colors on both cards.

Sue said...

Two stunning cards Darnell and congrats on your GD hugs Sue x

Brenda said...

Oh how fun for you to be GD for the CAS Mix Up Challenge Auntie! Your card is so gorgeous! I love how crisp and clean it is. The stenciled and gel embossed top "flap" is just gorgeous, I so love the color of this card! The sentiment is so shimmery and I really love that. For your second card, I am loving that little mum looking flower, but what I love even more is the schparkle! And of course the sentiment is perfect for an amazing friend. Hugs, Brenda

TK said...

You mastered the stencil and the gel, Darnell! This is an adorable card, and now we're all waiting to feel your card

Bonnie Lynn said...

Beautiful cards Darnell!! I'm just getting into using stencils but haven't "graduated" to embossing pastes/gels yet. Not sure why they just make me nervous. I"m glad you got a chance to pull these. I love the outcome.

Susan Renshaw said...

Great cards!
Thanks for sharing with Addicted to Stamps and More!

Linda W. (ScrappinBari) said...

Two beauties using the paste and stencils, Darnell - clever of you to make your own hugs stencil too!! Just love all the sparkle on the twofer!! Congrats on being CAS Mix-up GD!!

Julia Aston said...

Well, look at you, you little Guest DT!! I just love that stencil and the Aquatini color (can you wear that at the beach??!) Lovely design to use the circle as a flap and pretty Hugs stenciling added. And then there's a second paste stenciled card - you little over achiever! Well done you!!! Two beauties for the challenge! xx