Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Pink, Purple, White.

I will admit that this card was a struggle to create. While it is quite simplistic, getting the creativity together at 11:30pm on Christmas Eve, when I was bleary eyed with the need to sleep, was difficult. Still, it came together in the end.

That centre panel went through a miriad of different things before it ended up with a great whopping Prima flower as the centrepiece. I stamped two other panels before this one - the first was a rainbow tiered birthday cake with stars and streamers around it - but the colours didn't work. The second featured 2 step cupcakes but that wasn't working for me either. Even with this panel I played around with rhinestones before trying the piercing in the corners.

Cardstock: Whisper White, Shimmery White, Wisteria Wonder, not sure which pink, Pink Passion maybe - sorry, it's old cardstock.
Ink: Chocolate Chip.
Stamps: Bake Me a Cake by Lawn Fawn.
Other: Big Shot machine, dots embossing folder, paper piercing tool, mat pack, dimensionals, Prima rose, clear button, Pink Sorbet baker's twine by The Twinery.

Tips and Tricks:
1. I used the guide in the mat pack to pierce the corners of the white cardstock.
2. Gluing down the flower was surprisingly difficult. 2-way glue didn't work, glue tape didn't work. I ended up using dimensionals and just hope that it has survived!

Stuff Ups:
1. The layers are not aligned properly - I was too tired to see straight.
2. I've spoken about the drama I faced with the stamping.
3. Getting the flower to stick.

Pleasant Surprises:
Just the fact that I finished a card at all and it's not totally hideous - it was looking that way for a while there!

Friday, December 23, 2011

Birthday time

I made this card this morning, it was a quick card to make and features washi tape which is something new that I bought and was looking forward to using.

As you can see, this card is customised for my brother-in-law. I have a new alphabet stamp set by Lawn Fawn that allows me to do this!

Cardstock: Island Indigo, Basic Black, Brushed Silver, Whisper White.
 Ink: Tuxedo Black by Memento.
Stamps: Motorcycle by Stampin' Up, Jessie's ABC's by Lawn Fawn.
Other: Black and white checkered washi tape, sponge, dimensionals.

Tips and Tricks:
1. I put a little bit of glue tape down on the base card and stuck the silver panel to that. Then I put the washi tape around the edge to stick down the silver panel.
2. I sponged around the Whisper White layer to give it some interest.

Stuff Ups:
1. I should have cut the washi tape to make it thinner - it's just too overpowering.
2. Cutting the washi tape would also have allowed me to centre the motorcycle panel on the silver rather than have it sticking out over the top of the washi tape.
3. I really wanted to use my diamond plate embossing folder on the silver but it would have been too much.
4. The uneven edges on the washi tape was deliberate!

Pleasant Surprises:
I'm amazed that the letters of the sentiment all lined up - each letter is an individual stamp. Lawn Fawn stamps are brilliant at making stamping easy!

Saturday, December 3, 2011

Christmas, oh how I love you!

What a month I've had! I did get my preparation done in time for my interview and it certainly paid off as I got the job! I'll be teaching at a brand new school next year that is still being built! It's so exciting! Yay!

I also finished all my Christmas cards yesterday, thank goodness. It's taken me 3 months on and off to get them done. I tried paper piecing and I'm pleased with the results. The colours pop more in real life, I just couldn't get a decent snap of the card today, sigh.

I made 50 plus some spares. I used different patterned paper (as I've posted in a previous entry) so each card is different from the next one.

Cardstock: Crumb Cake, Old Olive, Cherry Cobbler, Very Vanilla, patterned paper is called December 25th by Kaisercraft.
Ink: Old Olive, Cherry Cobbler, Crumb Cake, Daffodil Delight, Memento ink in Tuxedo Black, Basic Black marker.
Stamps: Ornate Ornaments by Lawn Fawn.
Other: Basic Rhinestones, sponge.

Tips and Tricks:
1. Since I was making so many cards I did it all in stages like an assembly line:
  1. Made a prototype.
  2. Paper pieced the ornaments.
  3. Cut the base cards and card layers.
  4. Sponged the edges of the Very Vanilla with Crumb Cake ink.
  5. Stamped images on the Very Vanilla.
  6. Attached paper pieced ornaments.
  7. Stamped sentiments on base cards.
  8. Wrote messages in all the cards.
  9. Attached layers to card fronts and added rhinestones.
  10. Addressed envelopes and now they are ready to post!
2. Paper piecing took a long time! I stamped the baubles on patterned paper and cut them out. I stamped the baubles again on patterned paper and cut out the bands and topper pieces. Then I ran the edge of a Basic Black marker around the edge of each paper piece to hide the cut edge.
3.  I use my scissors to help me attach the sticky back rhinestones accurately. I find it easier than using tweezers.

Stuff Ups:
1. Lots. When making so many cards, mistakes are easy to make. The most mistakes were to do with stamping, the image smudging or not stamping fully, etc, etc.

Sunday, November 13, 2011


Sorry, no card this weekend! I have a job interview tomorrow so I've been working like mad preparing for that. Maybe mid week I'll put up a new card.
Wish me luck!
:) Kate

Monday, November 7, 2011

The last of the brown (for now)

So I made this card for my friend Tracey whose birthday is today (Happy birthday Trace!) and my husband said it's nice but I've been using too much brown lately (yeah, brown has been my neutral colour of choice, mainly because I bought a whole pack of it). I thought this sounded like a challenge (in a warped kinda way) so I'm making cards without brown for a little while! This is the last of the brown for now:

The design of this card is from an old Stampin' Up catalogue. I've tweaked it to suit my whims.

Cardstock: Chocolate Chip, Crumb Cake, Whisper White, Elegant Soiree DSP.
Ink: Versamark, Memento Tuxedo Black, Crumb Cake.
Stamps: Blissful Botanicals and Sophie's Sentiments by Lawn Fawn.
Other: Fiskars Eyelet border punch, Victoria crochet trim (I've called it lace in the past but it's not really called that), Perfect Pearls Mist in Heirloom Gold, American Craft ribbon, circle punch, Basic pearls, Big Shot machine, Beautiful Wings embosslit, mini glue dots, sponge, Fiskars corner rounder punch.

Tips and Tricks:
1. I lightly misted the Whisper White panel with the Perfect Pearls and let in dry before stamping on the sentiment.
2. I sponged around the butterflies with Crumb Cake ink.

Stuff Ups:
1. I messed up the alignment of the border punch so I had to do that again.

Pleasant Surprises:
1. I got the sentiment stamped correctly, first time! Gosh, I love Lawn Fawn stamps!!

Sunday, October 30, 2011

A twist on an old favourite

I've made another male birthday card and again this is a twist on my favourite design. I've created several male cards with the patterned paper you see on this card. All are slightly different from each other but have the same basic design.

Here's the recipe -

Cardstock: Chocolate Chip, Whisper White, Printed acetate by My Memories, Rough and Tough: Awesome by Kaiser.
Ink: Chocolate Chip, Old Olive, Pear Pizzazz, Bashful Blue, Stazon Black.
Stamps: Trendy Trees by Stampin' Up, Sophie's Sentiments by Lawn Fawn, Roughin' It by Bo Bunny.
Other: Honeydew bakers twine by The Twinery, Martha Stewart circle cutter, sponge, mini glue dots, Fiskars corner punch, stamp-a-ma-jig.

Tips and Tricks:
1. After cutting the circle, I used the scrap card with the circle hole in it as a mask to sponge the grass under the trees. I used a Pear Pizzazz marker to add texture to the grass. I trimmed off the bottom of the circle so it hides nicely behind the twine.
2. I sponged around the circle with Bashful Blue ink to show some sky. I sponged heavier at the top than the sides.
3. Getting a clear, precise image on the acetate took a few tries but luckily I remembered a trick. If you make a mistake on acetate with Stazon, just use Stazon cleaner to wipe off the ink and try again. It worked and didn't damage my acetate.
4. The acetate is secured with mini glue dots.
5. I used a stamp-a-ma-jig for the trees and got their placement right the first time. I stamped the leaves first rather than the trunks as the leaves are the bulkiest part of the tree, therefore they need the correct spacing.

Stuff Ups:
1. Stamping on the acetate took me about 8 tries to get right.
2. I still haven't mastered that circle cutter so the circle is a bit rough around the edge.
3. The Bo Bunny stamps just don't hold Stampin' Up ink nicely. It tends to pool on the surface. Lawn Fawn stamps do hold the ink nicely.

Pleasant Surprises:
1. I like the way the acetate looks on the card, particularly because it is patterned so in some parts you can see through it to the patterned paper underneath and in other parts you can't because it's opaque.

2. The honeydew bakers twine matched the patterned paper perfectly. You may not be able to see the pale green in the paper but it's an awesome, coincidental match.

Paper piecing Christmas

I've decided to go with the Rustic colour scheme for my Christmas cards (I spoke about it in a previous post). Once I mocked up a Christmas card and did a whole heap of paper pieced baubles there was no going back! Here's a snap of some of the baubles. I made 110 of them.

They're a bit pale due to the camera flash but you get the idea. Some of the patterned paper was embossed with gold. I plan to stick rhinestones on the little circles running around the middle of the baubles once I finish the cards.

Sunday, October 23, 2011

For my new nephew

This card took me hours to make, mainly because I couldn't think of a design that I liked. I kept playing with layouts, different colour schemes and papers. None felt right. Eventually I came up with this card. I've made it for my niece who gave birth to a gorgeous baby boy on Friday! I am posting this card and a present to her tomorrow.

My card also qualifies to be part of a sketch challenge from Lily Pad Cards, yay! Here's the link to the challenge - Sketch Challenge.

Here's the sketch:

This is also the first baby card I've ever made. I broke out some new Lawn Fawn stamps for the occasion.

Cardstock: Bashful Blue, Brushed Silver, Whisper White, watercolour paper.
Ink: Bashful Blue, Versamark, Basic Black, Stazon Black.
Stamps: 'Plus One' and 'Quinn's ABCs' by Lawn Fawn.
Other: Big shot machine, Top Note die, silver embossing powder, aqua painter, white organza ribbon, sponge, Circle cutter by Martha Stewart, mini glue dots, clear Bitty buttons.

Tips and Tricks:
1. I cut a top note die cut with my big shot machine. I stamped the rattle in Bashful Blue to make my own background. The top note die cut was adhered to the Brushed Silver layer. I trimmed the end offs of the die cut.
2. The pram and Charlie's name are stamped with Versamark on water colour paper and embossed with silver embossing powder. I used an aqua painter to colour them in. The wheels on the pram are water coloured with Basic Black ink which has taken on a purplish hue once it was watered down. Bitty buttons are adhered to the pram wheels with mini glue dots.
3. Charlie's name is layered on a piece of Bashful Blue cardstock which is adhered to the top note die cut. This covers up the top of the die cut and gives Charlie's name some dimension without using foam dots.
4. I sponged around the watercolour paper for Charlie's name and the pram with Bashful Blue ink which hasn't shown up in the photo.
5. I placed a mini glue dot behind the knot of the bow to help keep it flat and secure.
6. Lining up the stamps in Charlie's name and the sentiment took some time and tweaking. I tested the position of the stamps with ink on scrap paper until I was happy with the alignment.
7. I tested Memento's Tuxedo Black and Black Stazon on the silver cardstock and found that Stazon gave a blacker, more opaque black than Memento so I went with Stazon.

Stuff Ups:
1. I stamped and embossed Charlie's name many times in my quest to find a style I liked. I used different inks and colours, tried cutting out the letters, coloured the letters with markers, it all took a long time.
2. Some of the rattles didn't stamp properly so I filled in any missing parts with a Bashful Blue marker.
3. I have trouble using Martha's circle cutter so it took me a few attempts to get usable circles.
4. Being a teacher, the lack of capitalisation on the 'congrats' stamp and for Charlie's name does irritate me but I didn't make the stamps so I'll have to live with it. If Lawn Fawn made a Quinn's capitals stamp set, I'd buy it in half a heart beat. Maybe I should suggest it, lol!

Pleasant Surprises:
1. The whole card - didn't think it would look this good (if I do say so myself). My cards are usually pretty average and never look as good as all the other blogs out there. The acid test was my husband's reaction. Rather than, "Oh that's nice honey, very good!" (which I love hearing) I got, "Wow! That's awesome!" He sounded so surprised! I'm so proud of this card!

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Cricket Card

I've been needing ideas for manly cards and luckily I had this stamp set. This card was inspired by a card in an old Stampin Up catalogue and since cricket season is here again, I thought it would be the perfect time to make it.

The green cap features special Gel-a-tins Jelly scented embossing powder in 'Pine Fresh' so it smells like a pine forest. The fragrance is supposed to last for three weeks. You can check out Gel-a-tins here and their blog is here.

Cardstock: Chocolate Chip, Old Olive, Cherry Cobbler, Very Vanilla.
Ink: Chocolate Chip, Cherry Cobbler, Versamark.
Stamps: Teeny Tiny Sentiments, Just Cricket.
Other: Modern label punch, Early Espresso striped grosgrain ribbon, dimensionals, mat pack, paper piercer.
Non Stampin' Up: Gel-a-tin's Jelly Scented embossing powder in Pine Fresh, Bo Bunny Cambridge icandy brads.

Tips and Tricks:
1. This card is really straight forward. As I said, the cap is embossed with green pine scented embossing powder.
2. The grass is cut with my paper snips.
3. The cricket ball is on a dimensional as is the sentiment.

Stuff Ups:
1. The brad placement. I even used my paper piercing guide and still didn't get it right.
2. The ribbon looks a little bit loose and wonky on the right hand side but it seemed fine in real life.
3. Maybe I should have lightly coloured the cricket bat.

Pleasant Surprises:
1. My layering proportions are getting much more accurate.
2. I'm pleased with the way the grass turned out.

Monday, October 17, 2011

In the works

I've got one card ready to post about (which will happen next weekend as I'm back to work tomorrow after the lovely school holidays) and some others in the pipeline.

I've been working on some prototypes for my Christmas cards and think I have my design finalised. I just have to decide on my colour scheme. It's a choice between the Clean scheme (white-silver-turquoise) or the Rustic scheme (Christmas colours featuring craft and gold). The Clean scheme is my favourite but is the much more expensive option. The Rustic scheme is nice (I've got some lovely papers for paper piecing) but I'm not too confident on the colours I've chosen until I've matched them together. Decisions, decisions..

Will post more after I've had more time to think about it. More on the weekend,

Kate :)

Saturday, October 8, 2011


I was checking out The Daily Marker today and Kathy recommended visiting Lily Pad Cards. I hopped across and loved it so I decided to enter their colour challenge. This is the first challenge I've entered so I'm excited! Here's the challenge link: Lily Pad Cards - Color Palette Challenge.

I made this card today and will be mailing it tomorrow to my brother-in-law for his birthday. Happy birthday Bob!

It's probably the first time I haven't included a sentiment on the front of a card. I just couldn't see where it would fit. This card is a Kate original, I haven't cased anything.
I also learnt (from Lily Pad Cards) the value of photographing my cards against a light, plain background rather than my dark, wooden hutch.

Cardstock: Night of Navy, Cajun Craze, So Saffron.
Ink: Night of Navy, Cajun Craze, So Saffron, Versamark.
Stamps: Motorcycle, 'To a Classic'.
Other: striped grosgrain ribbon in Night of Navy, dimensionals, clear embossing powder, embossing buddy, heat tool, sponge, sticky strip.
Non Stampin' Up: corner rounder punch by Fiskars.

Tips and Tricks:
1. I used the emboss resist technique for the motorbike layer. I sponged over the clear embossed image with Cajun Craze and Night of Navy ink.
2. I used a sponge to ink around the cardstock layers with Night of Navy ink.
3. I used the speedometer stamp from 'To a Classic' as the background stamp on both the base card and So Saffron ribbon layer. The speedometer images on the So Saffron cardstock are clear embossed.
4. I pulled some threads from the ribbon to make it bunch up and stuck the bunched ribbon down on a piece of sticky strip. I secured the ends underneath the cardstock.

Stuff Ups:
1. It took me ages to get the ribbon layer the way I wanted it. I tried folding the ribbon in half lengthways and gluing it flat. I didn't like it. I tried bunching up the folded ribbon and gluing it down. I didn't like that either. Finally I tried the pulled thread method with a new piece of ribbon and was happy with that.
2. I had to fight the urge to bling up this card with brads and rhinestones. I thought it would be too much and didn't want it to look over the top. I hope I made the right decision there.

Saturday, October 1, 2011

Another Male Birthday Card

It wasn't easy to photograph this card and catch all the details but I did my best! This was cased from an old catalogue like my last card but again I have tweaked it a fair amount. The layout of the card is what got my attention - the three strips of colour with a gap in between. I made this for my Father-in-law. It was his birthday last Friday.

Again, a couple of techniques that I wanted to try are on this card.

Cardstock: Very Vanilla, Always Artichoke, Not Quite Navy, Cherry Cobbler.
Ink: Versamark Dazzle: Silver Frost (Non Stampin' Up but normal Versamark would be fine), Cherry Cobbler, Cherry Cobbler marker.
Stamps: French Foliage.
Other: Clear embossing powder.
Non Stampin' Up: Sophie's Sentiments stamp set by Lawn Fawn, Perfect Pearls Mist in Heirloom Gold, Fiskars corner rounder punch, Ranger Perfect Medium Pens, heat tool.

Tips and Tricks:
1. The first technique I tried was lining up my coloured card strips and stamping on them with Versamark. Then I adhered them to the base card with a gap in between.
2. The second technique I tried was stamping the sentiment in a pale colour repeatedly and then stamping it once in a bright colour. I used Versamark to do this and left a gap for the red sentiment. Then, for that red sentiment, I stamped it on the Versamark pad then onto my Cherry Cobbler ink pad before stamping on the card. I coated all the sentiments with clear embossing powder and heated them with my heat tool. You can just see the embossing in the photo.
3. The finished card was too clean for my liking so I spritzed it once with my Perfect Pearls mist. Once it had dried, I wiped over it with a tissue to clean any mist off of the embossed sentiments.

Stuff Ups:
1. The coloured card strips are not perfectly flush with the edges of the card. Some are a fraction shorter and that annoys me.
2. The sentiments are not perfectly aligned but it doesn't annoy me for some reason.
3. Maybe I should have used a different colour for the base (like Crumb Cake) so the sentiments stood out more. Then again I didn't want it to be reminiscent of the 'get well soon' card I made for my husband which features the same colours and stamp set.
4. I also don't like the flimsiness of Very Vanilla and Whisper White when it comes to base cards.
5. I am not convinced that Perfect Pearls mist was the right way to go with this card.
6. Also with the red sentiment, I didn't stamp it properly so I had to touch it up with a Ranger embossing pen and Cherry Cobbler marker.

Friday, September 30, 2011

Get Well Soon

This card was inspired by a card from an old Stampin' Up catalogue. I changed the colour scheme, stamps and ribbon, did some heat embossing and ended up with a result with which I am pleased.
I also broke out my new Lawn Fawn stamps and I am in love with them! They have a very different stickiness to them that I've never come across before with clear stamps - fun to poke and play with! The ink doesn't pool like on normal clear plastic stamps - it goes on smooth and crisp! Very pleased! You will be seeing more Lawn Fawn stamps here soon.

I made two of these: one as a thank you for my line manager and this for my Mother-in-law.

I watched a few ribbon tying videos on Youtube and I think I am on my way to ribbony happiness.

Cardstock: Chocolate Chip, Blushing Bride textured and plain, Kiwi Kiss textured and plain, Very Vanilla, Crumb Cake.
Stamps: Cottage Garden.
Ink: Chocolate Chip, Blushing Bride, Kiwi Kiss, Versamark.
Other: Basic pearls, Mat pack, Paper piercer, mini glue dots, dimensionals, stamp-a-ma-jig.
Non Stampin' Up: Sophie's Sentiments stamp set by Lawn Fawn, organza ribbon, Fiskars corner rounder punch, clear embossing powder, heat tool.

Tips and Tricks:
1. I wasn't planning on using the stamp-a-ma-jig but I accidentally stamped the 2 step flower perfectly (lol) and liked it so much I dragged out the stamp-a-ma-jig and did the rest of the flowers properly. The first step I stamped in the coloured ink and the second step (the outlined flower stamp) I stamped in Versamark, coated with clear embossing powder and heat embossed.
2. A mini glue dot secures the ribbon under the bow.
3. Basic pearls finish off the flower centres including the tiniest pearls for the flowers near the sentiment.
4. The mat pack hole guide was used for the paper piercing.

Stuff Ups:
1. I admit I took ages trying to line up the 2 step flower stamps before giving up and using the stamp-a-ma-jig. I got the green and brown ones fine but the pink just wouldn't match up.
2. The ribbon looks a bit kinked so maybe I should have ironed it.
3. I should have used some tombow or a glue pen rather than my tape runner for the green strip because the strip was too narrow. A teeny bit of glue can be seen from the front. Probably is not noticeable but enough to annoy me.

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Special 50th

This card was made for my Brother-in-law who celebrated his 50th birthday recently. It is similar to the card I made for my husband on his birthday but has been tweaked quite a bit. It looks much better in real life as it's difficult to photograph silver cardstock properly.

I really didn't want to give this one away, I became too attached to it!! You'll notice that I've been going nuts with my rounded corner punch lately!

Cardstock: Brushed Silver, Very Vanilla, More Mustard.
Ink: Versamark, Chocolate Chip, More Mustard marker.
Stamps: Cheers To You.
Other: Silver embossing powder, heat tool, dimensionals, Hemp twine, Very Vanilla satin ribbon, Clear embossing powder,
Non Stampin' Up: Put On Your Party Hat stamp set by Fiskars (for the candle numbers), Kilometric gold and silver gel pens, paper by Kaiser craft, Ranger medium pen (embossing pens), Fiskars corner rounder punch (much better than my SU one), White Fizz glitter, heat and set powder.

Tips and Tricks:
1. I embossed the sentiment 'Cheers to you' in silver on the silver cardstock and I gotta say, it looked super cool!
2. I used my Ranger medium pen like a Versamarker and coloured in the beer foam with it. Then I applied heat and set powder, heated it with the heat tool, applied the White Fizz glitter and heated it again to set it.
3. The hemp twine wrapped around the Vanilla ribbon gives a more masculine touch I think.
4. The 50th candles were embossed in silver and coloured in with silver gel pen. The flames were coloured in with gold gel pen. These gel pens were nice and thick - gave good coverage but that means give the ink heaps of time to dry properly.

Stuff Ups:
1. Apart from having to stamp the beer mugs a few times to get crisp images, I did ok with this one, no major hassles!
2. Hang on, I forgot that I had to redo the 50th image because I smudged the wet silver gel ink.

Brief Update

Hope you've liked the new spate of cards I've created recently, this time of year is pretty card heavy for me - lots of birthdays and other celebrations. I have one new card ready to blog about and I'm making 2 new cards tonight so you can expect a few more posts later in the week or next weekend at the latest.

All of the cards that I have posted here have been purposeful. They've been made for someone for a reason. I think I'd like to make and blog about a few cards that are created just because I want to. I have some new stamp sets that I adore but don't really have a need for just yet. I don't want them to go to waste so I'm going to use them. School holidays are approaching so I'll have a bit of time then to create something.
Looking forward to it already!

Saturday, September 17, 2011

Sew Nice to Stamp!

I've broken in another new stamp set - Sew Suite. This card was made for my Grandma, it's her birthday today and I'm visiting her tomorrow. I did want to make a bright, happy card and I think this fits the bill. It's a Kate original:

I've used quite a lot of things to create this card. It's one of the fussiest cards I've ever done.

Cardstock: Melon Mambo, Yoyo Yellow (retired), Whisper White, Island Oasis DSP, watercolour paper.
Ink: Versamark, Stazon black, Pacific Point, Melon Mambo, Pumpkin Pie, Crumb Cake, Daffodil Delight, Sahara Sand marker.
Stamps: Sew Suite, Teeny Tiny Sentiments.
Other: Big Shot machine, Vintage Wallpaper embossing folder, heat tool, dimensionals, sponge, White Uniball gel pen, Ice Cream Parlor ribbon (American spelling), Ice Cream Parlor buttons, mini glue dots, aqua painter.
Non Stampin' Up: Clear embossing powder, non stick craft sheet.

Tips and Tricks:
1. For the sewing machine and cotton reels, I stamped them on the Versamark ink pad, then in Stazon Black, then onto the watercolour paper. I added clear embossing powder and heat embossed the images.
2. I used my Stampin spots to dab ink onto the craft sheet and used that ink for the water colouring.
3. The buttons are threaded with pieces of Whisper White cardstock and adhered with mini glue dots. The glue dots also keep the paper threads in place.

Stuff Ups:
1. The faux stitching around the outside. I practised on scrap cardstock first and it looked acceptable but when I started to do it on the card, it all got messed up. The cardstock was too light and my lighting was too bad to see what I was doing properly. I have learnt that it works best on darker cardstock (as it did in my practise session) and with smaller stitches. I need to learn how to 'corner' properly. I need to make the stitches consistently the same size and in a straight line. I feel I almost wrecked the card with the stitching I did at the end.
2. I used a Sahara Sand marker to trace around the sewing machine to cover up some leaked ink from my water colouring, but I wish I had just left it plain.
3. I forgot to position the buttons tag lower (I nearly forgot to use it completely!) which meant the sentiment didn't fit. As a result I had to cut it out from its nice modern label punched tag. I sponged around it and jammed it in the corner. I think it's ok but not what I had planned to do.
4. Maybe placing three buttons under the ribbon as well as on top would better balance out the card? I'm not sure. I don't want the buttons to dominate the whole card.
5. My cutting out could be better. At the very least, I could try a technique that I've seen on YouTube - after cutting out the images, run around the cut edge with the side of a black marker tip so you don't see the white core.
6. I think I can see a dimensional poking out from under a cotton reel.

I know I sound quite critical but I really am pleased with this card, apart from the faux stitching that is.

Friday, September 16, 2011

A Venture in Layering

I've been wanted to try a few new techniques lately and I'm always looking for the opportunity to use them. For this card I wanted to try a bit of layering. Not sure what the official term is, but I'm using layering to describe the building of ink, stamps and/or embossing on cardstock. This first attempt turned out to be a bit light handed but I'm happy with what I have done none the less.

I did break out my brand new and desperate to try product - scented embossing powder! I bought it (and many others) from gel-a-tins. It smells just like a vanilla latte. Apparently the scent will last for 3 weeks. The colour is white with brown specks. You can't really see it in the photo, I probably should have used a darker embossing powder (such as Chocolate Bliss or Can't Catch Me Gingerbread).

Grandad's birthday - hope he enjoyed it and liked my card. Here's the recipe:

Cardstock: Chocolate Chip, Very Vanilla, Newsprint DSP.
Ink: Chocolate Chip, Versamark.
Stamps: Bliss, Teeny Tiny Sentiments, Wonderful Favourite.
Other: Early Espresso striped grosgrain ribbon, oval punch, scallop oval punch, dimensionals.
Non Stampin' Up: Perfect Pearls mist in Heirloom Gold, Gelly powder - Extra Foam Vanilla Latte scented embossing powder from gel-a-tins. (The website is a little bit buggy at the moment but I'm sure it will be fixed soon.)

Tips and Tricks:
1. The layering - I've seen a lot of cards out there with a lot going on with the DSP - inking, embossing, distressing, etc, so I had a go at it myself:
  • First I misted my DSP with water and then crinkled and screwed it up.
  • Next I sprayed it with Perfect Pearls mist in Heirloom Gold and let it dry.
  • Then I stamped an image from the Bliss stamp set in Versamark and applied the scented embossing powder. I heat embossed it.
  • After that I stamped the bird from Bliss in Chocolate Chip ink randomly over the DSP.
2.  I stamped another bird in Chocolate Chip on Very Vanilla cardstock, cut it out and popped it up on dimensionals in the bottom right hand corner.

Stuff Ups:
1. As I've said already, I should have chosen a darker embossing powder - I was too cautious.
2. Same with the Perfect Pearls mist - I should have used more.
3. The sentiments aren't aligned properly. They are three separate stamps and you can tell. The happy birthday one is also too high and nearly cut off by the punch.

Saturday, September 10, 2011

Clean and Simple Birthday

I wanted to make a clean and simple birthday card for my friend Nean so I set myself a 20 minute challenge! This is the result:

The green does look much better in real life (like most cards do) and is textured which hasn't been picked up too well by the camera. That's probably my fault, not the camera's.

Cardstock: Crumb Cake, Kiwi Kiss textured, Island Oasis DSP, Tempting Turquoise, Very Vanilla.
Ink: Tempting Turquoise.
Stamps: Teeny Tiny Sentiments.
Other: Big Shot machine, Top Note die, Victorian lace, Beautiful Wings embosslit, Basic Pearls, Modern label punch, dimensionals, mini glue dots.
Non Stampin' Up: None.

Tips and Tricks:
1. There are none really, this card is as easy as they get. I suppose I'll tell you that I cut up the Basic Pearl Strips into segments of two or three pearls and used them as the butterflies bodies.
2. The butterflies are stuck on with mini glue dots.

Stuff Ups:
1. This card could certainly be jazzed up with a bit of time and effort but I'm pleased with it as is.
2. Probably should have used Old Olive instead of Kiwi Kiss but I really wanted to use textured cardstock and I don't have textured Old Olive.

Friday, September 9, 2011

Father's Day 2 Ways: Part 2

For this card I knew I wanted to play with two of my new Stampin' Up items - Elegant Soiree DSP and the 'To a Classic' stamp set. They may be retired now (since the new catalogue came out) but I still only just bought them. This card is a Kate original and here is the result:

There's a lot of colours mixed up here so I hope I've gotten away with it. I really wish I had the correct coloured cardstock but I didn't so I had to substitute for some retired cardstock.

Cardstock: Elegant Soiree DSP, Chocolate Chip, Very Vanilla, Bashful Blue or Brocade Blue (sorry don't know which!)
Ink: Chocolate Chip ink pad, Chocolate Chip marker, Marina Mist marker.
Stamps: To a Classic, Teeny Tiny Sentiments.
Other: Early Espresso striped grosgrain ribbon (think it's retired now), scallop oval punch, oval punch, dimensionals, paper piercer, mat pack.
Non Stampin' Up: Brown/bronze brads, aqua painter.

Tips and Tricks:
1. The car and checkered pattern are the same stamp and in between them (on the stamp) is the sentiment 'happy birthday to a classic' (I think) which, of course, I didn't want on a Father's day card. I used markers to ink up the stamp.
2. I used Marina Mist ink and an aqua painter to lightly shade in the car.
3. I tried to make a 'dashboard dial' effect with the sentiment layers.
4. The car layer is popped up on dimensionals to accomodate the brads and ribbon underneath.

Stuff Ups:
1. The car image - I should have either clear embossed the image first or used watercolour paper because the ink started to bleed when I added the water via the aqua painter. After it dried I touched up the image with the marker which hid a multitude of sins!
2. I've run out of Baja Breeze cardstock - I had to substitute with old retired stuff instead.
3. I've run out of Early Espresso cardstock - I had to substitute it with Chocolate Chip instead.
3. Probably should have used four brads to balance out that top layer.
4. The ribbon should have been a bit tighter but wrapping it around paper was difficult due to its flimsiness.

Pleasant Surprises - Ooh, a new heading!
1. I managed to align the 'Happy Father's day' and 'dad' stamped images the first time I stamped them!

Saturday, September 3, 2011

Father's Day 2 ways: Part 1

Yes, it's been a while! Had a card drought for the last month - no birthdays or anything. I have two for you today - one I made for my Dad and one I made for my father-in-law. I'll start with the one for my Dad.

You can just see a pic of me on the left behind the card - hello me!
I was cruising google images for inspiration and came across a card I adored and have cased it almost entirely I'm sorry to say. It features three Stampin' Up products that I received yesterday (To a Classic stamp set, Newsprint DSP and silver brushed metallic cardstock, oh and the motorcycle stamp that I haven't used yet) so I had to try it. The original card I loved was made by Ros Davidson.

Cardstock: Basic Black, Brushed Silver, Very Vanilla, Newsprint DSP.
Ink: Stazon Black, Basic Black.
Stamps: Motorcycle, To a Classic, Teeny Tiny Sentiments.
Other: Sponge, dimensionals, big shot machine.
Non Stampin' Up: Diamond Plate embossing folder by Universal, Black and white checkered Japanese washi tape (inside the card), Stampamajig.

Tips and Tricks:
1. Using the brushed silver cardstock was a lot easier than using a coke can to achieve the metallic effect. Another idea is to wrap a piece of cardstock with tin foil and run that through the big shot machine. The cardstock should give the tin foil the power to hold the embossed image. Haven't tried it myself just yet, only read about it somewhere.
2. I used the stampamajig to stamp the sentiments. I find that the easiest way to stamp with small skinny stamps. I don't bother using the plastic sheet, just that little T-square device. It helps to avoid wobble marks and smudging you make especially if you are prone to it like I am.
3. I sponged around the main image with a watered down Basic Black ink solution. My Basic Black ink spot pad has dried out and I don't have a reinker so I just added a bit of water (and probably wrecked it now) and used that with a sponge.
4. Ways my card differs from the original:
  • I am not talented enough to create a masked and stamped image so mine is a single stamped motorbike.
  • My proportions and dimensions are different (and probably skewiff).
  • I have a sentiment stamped on mine.
  • I used a diamond plate embossing folder rather than the square lattice embossing folder.
  • So yeah, not a whole heap different...
Stuff Ups: 
1. The Very Vanilla layer - I should have trimmed it down but I was too worried that I'd ruin it so I left it big.
2. Getting that Very Vanilla layer on straight. I must have peeled it off 3 or 4 times. Thank goodness the card didn't bend.
3. Forgot to take a photo of the insert inside. It looks really cool with the black and white checkered washi tape along the bottom - like a checkered flag at the races.

Monday, July 25, 2011

Patchwork Birthday

I've seen this patchwork technique quite a bit on the different blogs that I visit and couldn't resist giving it a try. I learnt a lot for the next time that I attempt it!

This is a similar design to the one in 'Double but Different Part 2'. I made this for another niece's birthday. Normally with my cards I make a single layer insert to write on, particularly if the base cardstock is a dark colour. For this card I made a double layer insert using the same DSP as I have used on the front of the card. Here's a photo:

I'm pleased with the way the insert turned out. It ties it all together nicely.

(This is a very strange coincidence and it's times like these I can't help but know there's got to be a higher power watching over us all - I couldn't remember if the brad I used was called antique or vintage so I went to check in my bag where I keep the brads. I flipped on the light and saw a big spider just about to crawl inside the bag I needed to check. If I had been a moment later I wouldn't have seen the spider - just rustled around in the bag and possibly would have been bitten!! So there you go. Also, old spidey is no longer with us. I made sure of that.)

Cardstock: Rich Razzleberry, Very Vanilla (as the base to stick the squares on), Cottage garden DSP (retired I think).
Ink: Old Olive, Rich Razzleberry.
Stamps: Teeny Tiny Sentiments.
Other: Top Note die, Big Shot machine, Vintage Wallpaper embossing folder, Square punch, Chantilly lace, Antique brads, sponge, dimensionals, Modern label punch, paper piercing tool, mat pack, basic pearls.
Non Stampin' Up: Perfect Pearl Mist in Heirloom Gold.

Tips and Tricks:
1. The patchwork -
  • I cut a piece of scrap Very Vanilla cardstock the same size as my card. I should have used PLAIN paper!! If you have a go, please try plain paper first.
  • I ran my glue tape in close together lines across the scrap of card.
  • I used my new square punch to punch out the squares from different sheets of the Cottage Wall DSP and stuck them carefully onto the glue tape.
  • When finished I ran it through the big shot using the top note die.
  • I ran the patchwork die cut through the big shot again in the Vintage Wallpaper embossing folder.
  • I sponged around the outside of the die cut with Old Olive ink. Yeah it's a bit too dark - I got carried away.
2. The base card is sprayed with the Heirloom Gold mist.
3. I cut a strip of DSP and glued it onto the base card to break up the razzleberry.
4. I punched out two modern labels and cut one in half, spaced it out and glued it behind the other to give that extra bit of border. I sponged around it with Old Olive.

5. The lace -
  • I cut a piece and glued the ends behind the top note die cut.
  • I cut two shorter pieces, twisted them once and thread them underneath the glued on piece.
  • Then I stabbed a hole through them and the cardstock with my paper piercing tool.
  • The antique brad was pushed through and secured.
6. I added the smallest basic pearls to the modern label punch out to give it a lift. I added them after I took the photo, so sorry you can't see them.

Stuff Ups:
1.  The Very Vanilla cardstock made my patchwork a little bit too thick for the embossing folder so some of the embossed bits split a little. Plain paper would prevent this problem I'm sure.
2. I used too much ink around the top note die cut.
3. Trying to get the brad through all the lace and cardstock was a challenge. It ended up quite bulky so I popped the die cut up on dimensionals to compensate.
4. If I'm being picky, I would only use one type of striped paper and more of it as the two pieces I used don't totally work. At the very least I would try to punch the stripes at the same angle.

My poor hubby!

My lovely hubby had an operation last week and I made him a get well card for his stay in hospital. This card was kind of a challenge as I had only a small bag containing my most basic card making items in it. I knew I wanted to use my new French Foliage stamp set and some colours from the Regals collection. I threw in some things that I thought would work and this is the result:

Cardstock: Crumb Cake, Very Vanilla.
Ink: Always Artichoke, Not Quite Navy, Bravo Burgundy, Versamark.
Stamps: French Foliage, So Happy For You.
Other: None
Non Stampin' Up: Charcoal grosgrain ribbon, black rhinestones, Perfect Pearls Mist in Heirloom Gold, edge distresser tool.
Tips and Tricks:
1. After I stamped the card base, I spritzed the card with the Perfect Pearls mist for a nice gold sheen. You can see it above the sentiment layer where the camera flash highlights it.
2. I also spritzed the sentiment layer after crumpling the cardstock because it was too bare and new.
3. Some of the leaves have been stamped after first stamping off on a scrap piece of paper. This softens the colour and produces a lighter effect.
4. The Versamark has been used to stamp splodges from the French Foliage set over the leaves, on the sentiment layer and inside the card.

Stuff Ups:
1. I originally used the masking technique to create the background of leaves and gold spritz and left a blank centre rectangle for the sentiment but it didn't look right. Essentially, the Very Vanilla hides some mistakes. The Very Vanilla cardstock may be too bright and I could have used more Crumb Cake I suppose. I didn't have any with me and I like the Vanilla as it is.
2. The charcoal ribbon doesn't quite match but I don't have any black.
3. The placement of the rhinestones could be more precise.
4. I need to learn how to make pretty bows instead of snaggly lopsided ones!

Sunday, July 24, 2011


I have a couple of new cards to talk about and I hope I can post them tomorrow.

I had to edit the 'Double but Different' posts as I labelled the lace I had used as Chantilly lace when in fact it was Victoria lace. Sorry about that. I had forgotten that I bought both and didn't check the label properly. One of the cards that I will post tomorrow does have the Chantilly lace so you can see the difference. I bought the Victoria lace because it's so pretty and I bought the Chantilly lace because I like the name, odd creature that I am. The lace is pretty too but I prefer the Victoria lace.

See you tomorrow!

Saturday, July 16, 2011

A Little Birthday

I don't have much of a call for kids cards as there simply aren't many kids in our family right now - only two. This card I designed for the youngest kid - he has just turned two. I must get some more kid oriented stamps for future years.

This card was inspired by a set of decorative brads I bought featuring cute balloons and birthday cake slices. I didn't end up using any of those on the cover! The blue stars and the big round brads are from that set though.

Cardstock: Shimmery White, Gable Green (retired), Real Red, Pacific Point, Whisper White.
Ink: Pacific Point (ink and marker), Pumpkin Pie (marker), Real Red (marker), Daffodil Delight (marker), Chocolate Chip (marker), Versamark, Stazon black.
Stamps: None that are from Stampin' Up.
Other: Pumpkin Pie taffeta ribbon, Lattice embossing folder, big shot machine, Paper piercing tool, mat pack, sponge, dimensionals.
Non Stampin' Up: Fiskars clear stamps - Cookies, Cake & Ice Cream stamp set, Put On Your Party Hat stamp set, Square scallop punch, Doodlebug Designs brads, Fiskars Cupcake border punch.

Tips and Tricks:
1. The scallop squares have Pacific Point ink sponged around the edges to liven them up a little. The squares are also popped up on dimensionals.
2. The stamps on the scallop squares were all stamped in Versamark, then Stazon black, then heat embossed. I find that makes colouring them in easier. The images were all coloured in with markers.
3. Shimmery White is a lot thicker cardstock than Whisper White so I always choose it for a card base.

Stuff Ups:
1. The main reason for the green panel is that the lattice embossing folder doesn't reach to the bottom of the card and I needed a way to hide it.
2. I was going to have more of the green colour in the stamped pictures on the scallop squares but I forgot that I didn't have a marker in that colour. Thankfully there is a little green in those big brads to tie it in better. I also used the green inside the card to make a layer to cover up the back of the brads and that unembossed portion.
3. I kind of wish I used a different colour than green so I could make that cupcake border stand out more. It looks a bit grass and picket fencey to me. Having said that, using blue or red would be too much. Orange would make the ribbon pointless....yellow maybe? Brown?

Double But Different Part 2

So the first twin card is in my previous post. This card I made for Emma. I hope both of them like their cards!

Here's the card recipe (I know I should say procedure but recipe sounds so much cuter):

Cardstock: Crumb Cake, Rich Razzleberry, Very Vanilla, Chocolate Chip.
Ink: Rich Razzleberry, Chocolate Chip, Versamark.
Stamps: Bliss, Itty Bitty.
Other: Top note die, big shot machine, Vintage Wallpaper embossing folder, Hemp twine, Itty Bitty buttons, Victoria lace, modern label punch, basic pearls, mini glue dots.
Non Stampin' Up: sentiment stamp from CheeseCake Party by Penny Black, Zing gold glitter embossing powder by American Crafts.

Tips and Tricks:
1. There are small pearls on the vintage wallpaper embossing but the photo doesn't highlight them.
2. The butterflies were stamped by using the 'Rock and roll' technique. I'd recommend that you search youtube for a video demonstrating the technique. I inked up the stamp in Rich Razzleberry then rolled the edges around on a Chocolate Chip ink pad. Voila! Two toned stamping.
3. The Victoria lace is just some scrap ends I had left over that are tucked and glued under the top note die cut with mini glue dots.
4. I used a mini glue dot to anchor the middle itty bitty button to keep them faced up.

Stuff Ups:
1. The clear mount block I used for the 'rock and roll' technique was too big which inhibited my control over the amount of 'roll' I could do. I would use the smallest block I possibly could if I were to do this technique again.
2. I probably should have glued all three itty bitty buttons or none at all because it looks a little lopsided with just one glued.
3. The gold glitter embossing powder - while I like the gold colour it produced, the glitter in the powder caused the end result to be a bit lumpy. I would have liked a smoother end result. Ideally, a gold powder without glitter in it would be a better choice.

Monday, July 11, 2011

Double But Different Part 1

I've just made two birthday cards for my husband's twin nieces birthday (they're grown up not kids) and since the two of them are so different, I've made very different cards. This is the card I made first for Jess.

Cardstock: Early Espresso, Very Vanilla, Specialty DSP (retired I guess, it was in the summer mini catalogue).
Ink: Early Espresso, Baja Breeze.
Stamps: Butterfly Prints, Teeny Tiny Sentiments.
Other: Sponge, Modern label punch, Basic Pearls, Victoria lace (also from the summer mini), dimensionals, mini glue dots, Butterfly punch.
Non Stampin' Up: Nothing, woohoo!

Tips and Tricks:
1. I used caution when sponging the specialty DSP which means use ink sparingly. I lightly inked my piece of sponge then dabbed it onto scrap paper a few times before using it. I started at the edges and in circular motions I applied and buffed the ink onto the paper. It took a while to do. When finished, I used a clean sponge to buff over the whole image which removed any excess ink from the embossing and made it pop!
2. I adhered the butterflies with mini glue dots.
3. The sentiment label is sponged in Early expresso around the edges and lightly sponged on the face with Baja Breeze. I did this to dull the brightness of the bare Very Vanilla cardstock. It's popped up on dimensionals so it doesn't interfere with the lace.
4. I used all 3 sizes of basic pearls on the sentiment punch, starting on the outside with the largest. I cut a pearl strip into smaller segments of 2 for the butterflies bodies.

Stuff Ups:
1. I wasn't carefully enough in measuring my DSP so I had to trim it after the sponging and lost some of the great edge effect I got from the sponging process. I responged the cut edge but it's not quite the same.
2. The 'happy birthday' sentiment is a little off centre but I can live with it.

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Another blokey birthday

It's been a month since I've updated this - I've only made one other card apart from this one. That's due to life and work issues, blah, blah, blah!
This card was for my husband's good friend. I was running out of card ideas for guys and looked for some inspiration. I found it through a card at Art with Heart by Claire Daly. If you scroll down, it's the second card - the shapes and style are simple but lovely. I changed it up a lot to make a not-as-lovely card (unfortunately, not deliberately!)

Cardstock: Crumb Cake, Whisper White.
Ink: Stazon black, So Saffron (marker), Always Artichoke (marker), Crumb Cake (marker), Chocolate Chip (marker and ink pad), Versamark.
Stamps: So Happy For You.
Other: Hemp twine, sponge, dimensionals.
Non-Stampin' Up: Green jewel brads, paper from American Crafts: Merrymint - Peanut Brittle, Fudge, Birthday clear stamps - brand unknown, black embossing powder, heat gun, Fiskars corner punch.

Tips and Tricks:
1.  The 'birthday wishes' sentiment is stamped on a strip of Whisper White cardstock and adhered to the patterned paper.
2. The edges of the base card and the sentiment layer are roughly sponged with Chocolate Chip ink.

Stuff Ups:
1. The twine is a bit too loose for my liking.
2. The cross hatch layer is not centred.
3. My black embossing powder started to clump due to moisture and was difficult to work with. It was good quality stuff but both my black and white have become clumpy. None of the other brands do this. I wish I could remember the brand but I put my embossing powders in plastic containers and throw out the little jars.
4. My Stampin' Up corner puncher is crap I'm sorry to say. Apart from the cover popping off and it being difficult to unlock, it kept biting into my corners too far. My new Fiskars punch only cost me $8 and is a breeze to use. That's 3 strikes so far Stampin' Up - my Crystal Effects, Corner Punch and SNAIL dispenser.

Saturday, June 4, 2011

A bright birthday

The best thing happened today. I dropped into my favourite stamping store (Stampit in East Vic Park) and they had a sale on Prima and Ki Creations - 50% off it all! I was like a kid in a candy shop and stocked up on all the Prima Flowers and Pebbles that I wanted. You can be sure to see a lot more of those in the future, starting today!

I made a card for my Mum's birthday but I wasn't completely happy with the way it turned out. I had to look to the internet for inspiration as I was suffering from brain burnout. I'll post the card I designed at a later date, but for now here is the card I was inspired to make:

No top note die or modern label punch, aren't you proud of me??
The colours are much bright in real life but that's what bad lighting and bad photography will do.
The card that inspired me to make this is from Ivanka's Card Studio.

Cardstock: Basic Black, So Saffron, Melon Mambo, Crumb Cake and Shimmery White.
Ink: Stazon Black.
Stamps: Curly Cute.
Other: Big shot machine, Vintage wallpaper embossing folder, dimensionals, mini glue dots.
Non Stampin' Up: Flowers (Prima Flowers - Raspberry), Blue rhinestones (BoBunny Jewels - Barefoot & Bliss).

Tips and Tricks:
1. This card is pretty straight forward - simple layers and the shimmery white card is dry embossed with the vintage wallpaper embossing folder.
2. The flowers are adhered to the card with mini glue dots.
3. The sentiment is popped up on dimensionals.

Stuff Ups:
1. The sentiment took me ages today because I couldn't stamp it perfectly so I kept redoing it, then I'd get it right but cut it crooked and have to start over. Sooo frustrating!
2. I tried using basic black ink but it kept bleeding through the cardstock. Stazon gives a much crisper result, however, it does stain your stamp.
3. I need to buy new blades for my paper trimmer so the layers are a bit straggly around the edges.

Monday, May 30, 2011

A Tropical Wedding

The wedding in Bali was wonderful! Couldn't ask for a better setting or weather, everything went smoothly for the bride and groom. I wanted to make a tropical themed card for them. This design was cased and modified. Thanks and credit to Kathleen Hopperstad at My Happy Stampin' Place for the inspiration.

Cardstock: So Saffron, Old Olive, Whisper White, Tempting Turquoise, Island Oasis DSP.
Ink: Pumpkin Pie, Tempting Turquoise, Rose Red, Chocolate Chip, Old Olive, Versamark, Rose Red marker, Tempting Turquoise marker, Pumpkin Pie marker.
Stamps: Tropical Party, Teeny Tiny Sentiments.
Other: Pumpkin Pie Taffeta ribbon, dimensionals, Modern label punch, Pearl accents, dimensionals.
Non Stampin' Up: Clear embossing powder, Martha Stewart Circle cutter.

Tips and Tricks:
1. The grass skirting is cut with plain old scissors.
2. The coconut, palm frond, sentiment and flowers were stamped in Versamark then colour. After that they were heat embossed with clear embossing powder.
3. The circle were layered and sponged around with Pumpkin Pie ink as well as the sentiment.
4. Pearls adorn the flower centres and sentiment.
5. The markers were used to colour the coconut's umbrella and straw.

Stuff Ups:
1. Even though I searched my Teeny Tiny sentiments, I still managed to miss the stamp that says 'For the Newly Weds'. I am still kicking myself about that. It would have been sooo much better than just 'congratulations'.

Anya, Flowers and Butterflies

This card was made for my niece and I wanted it to be a little bit girly without being over the top with pink and purple. I turned again to my beloved top note die but changed from my normal landscape style to a portrait style of card. The camera doesn't do justice to the glitter and rhinestones though:
Cardstock: Marina Mist, Chocolate Chip, Pink Pirouette, Whisper white (just a little bit), watercolour paper.
Ink: Chocolate Chip, Pink Pirouette, Marina Mist, Versamark, Rose Red, Sahara Sand marker.
Stamps: Curly Cute, Butterfly Prints.
Other: Top Note die, Big Shot machine, Rhinestone accents, Corner punch, dimensionals.
Non Stampin' Up: Fleur Anya stamp, clear embossing powder, black embossing powder, Sizzix Spring Flowers textured impressions embossing folder, silver glitter letter stickers by Papercraft, aquapainter.

Tips and Tricks:
1. The Fleur Anya is stamped on watercolour paper in Versamark and then heat embossed with black embossing powder.
2. Anya is coloured with water and ink using an aquapainter. The colours are added at different intensities to get the shading. Basically her skin is Pink Pirouette ink with a hint of rose red on her cheeks. Anya's dress and flowers are Marina Mist. The flower centres are Rose Red with a rhinestone in the middle of each. Anya's hair is Chocolate Chip ink.
3. It's difficult to see clearly but the Chocolate Chip layer has butterflies stamped on it in Versamark and they have been heat embossed with clear embossing powder.
4. The 'Happy Birthday' sentiment has been stamped in Versamark then Marina Mist ink and finally heat embossed with clear embossing powder.
5. Rhinestones of various sizes are placed on the Happy Birthday sentiment, Anya's flowers and the pink top note die cut.
6. Tiani's name and the flower next to her name are silver glitter stickers which are really sparkly. The camera doesn't show it in this picture, but if you click on the image to make it larger you can see the sparkles!

Stuff Ups:
1. When aquapainting Anya, some of the ink leaked past the black embossed border so I use a Sahara Sand marker to trace around Anya, making the ink less noticeable.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Hubby's Birthday

Well it's two male birthday cards in a row! It's my husband's birthday in two days time and we will be in Bali celebrating it! This is hot off the press, just finished. I'm giving Jason his presents tomorrow so I don't have to take them on the plane. This is a pure Kate creation:

I'm thrilled with the result because it was looking decidedly dodgy for a while. It all came together in the end.

Cardstock: Basic Black, Basic Grey, Going Grey, Whisper White.
Stamps: So Happy For You, Cheers to You.
Ink: Versamark, Chocolate Chip ink pad, More Mustard marker.
Other: Circle punch, big shot machine, dimensionals.
Non Stampin' Up: Paper by Kaiser craft, Glitter and white embossing powder, clear embossing powder, heat tool, Ranger Perfect Medium Pens, Cuttlebug diamond plate embossing folder, Coke Zero can.

Tips and Tricks:
1. To get the metal how you want it:
  • Do be very careful! Jagged or not, this metal can cut you easily.
  • Wash out your aluminium can. With sharp scissors, cut off the top and bottom of the can, then cut the cylinder up one side so you end up with a long rectangular piece.
  • Dry off any water with a tea towel and cut a piece to fit inside your diamond plate embossing folder. Run it through the big shot machine.
  • Trim the metal to the size and shape you want. I couldn't cut it straight with my scissors so I ended up using a circle punch to make the round discs. The punch cut the metal quickly and efficiently.
  • I used double sided tape to secure the discs.
2. To heat emboss the beer mugs I first inked the stamp with Versamark then inked the stamp with Chocolate Chip ink before stamping on Whisper White card. Next I used clear embossing powder and the heat tool. After that I used a Perfect Pearls Medium pen (a Versamarker would be great too) to colour the beer foam and then used the white/glitter embossing powder to make the foam pop and shine. I used a More Mustard marker to colour in the beer mug.
3. The same beer mug is stamped in Versamark on the grey card to give interest to the background.

Stuff Ups:
1. I originally used a cactus stamp and green ink for the background but it looked terrible. The beer mug image works so much better.
2. As I said before, I couldn't cut the metal straight so I used the circle punch in desperation and it worked.

Friday, April 29, 2011

Dad's Birthday

Tomorrow is Dad's birthday, happy birthday Dad! I wanted to make a card about golf since Dad loves golf. While I was looking for inspiration, I found a card design that I loved! It wasn't a golf card but I used what I had to make it kate-ified. The original design is from Create With Christy.

Cardstock: Pacific Point, Cherry Cobbler, Chocolate Chip, Very Vanilla.
Stamps: Curly Cute (on the inside as the sentiment).
Inks: Cherry Cobbler classic ink pad.
Other: Big shot machine, Lattice embossing folder, dimensionals, mat pack, paper piercing tool, 2 way glue pen.
Non Stampin' Up: The follow products were bought from Crafty Cards on Garling - golf ball brads (the big, round, white things - the camera doesn't do them justice!), brown grosgrain ribbon, 3D golf stickers by Wishmade. I also used Thickers Fabric chipboard letter stickers in Doll. The bronze brads were from Stampin Stuff. Clear stamps 'Golfer' from http://www.sullivans.net/ though I bought mine from Starfish Lane in Mt Lawley.

Tips and Tricks:
1. On the big tag, I used 2 way glue to adhere the blue cardstock to the red before running it through the big shot machine.
2. The big tag was cut with a paper trimmer. I tried to cut the corners off at right angles to get them even.
3. I used Very Vanilla cardstock to make the white golf balls stand out more. You could substitute that for Whisper White depending on your project.

Stuff Ups:
1. I used the guides that came with the mat pack to align my brads but I still managed to make them look wonky.
2. The tag is too long - if it were shorter, the word 'Dad' would fit better but I made the tag first and forgot to check the height of my letters.

Mother's Day

I simply adore this Mother's Day card, however, I cannot lay claim to the gorgeous design. This design is by the incredibly talented Angie Brown from Stampin' Dreams. I loved it from the second I saw it and knew it would be perfect for my Mum for Mother's Day. It also has a lot of elements to it and not a lot of stamping.

The main differences between my card and Angie's are that I didn't have the same sentiment stamp as Angie so I lowered the placement of the bird and branches, and popped my sentiment up on the modern label punch out (my fave!). Also my white embossing powder was clumpy so I chucked it out (it was useless) and as a result I don't have that pretty detail on the bird's wing. I used plain old Versamark instead.

Here's the procedure:

Cardstock: Shimmery White, Bashful Blue, Night of Navy. You could use Whisper White but the Shimmery White is much thicker cardstock and I feel it makes for a sturdier base card.
Inks: Bashful Blue ink spot, Night of Navy ink spot, Versamark.
Stamps: Vintage Vogue, Teeny Tiny Sentiments.
Other: Big shot machine, Top note die, Whisper White satin ribbon, Modern Label Punch, Bird punch, sponge, stick on pearls, retired triple flower punch, dimensionals, 2 way glue pen.
Non Stampin' Up: Polka dots embossing folder by Cuttlebug, black permanent marker.

Tips and tricks:
1. I sponged around the edges of the top note die cut, bird body and modern label punch out piece using Bashful Blue ink.
2. I punched 7 branches out of Night of Navy cardstock using the bird punch. I trimmed them to fit the way I wanted and glued them down with the 2 way glue pen.
3. I coloured a basic pearl with black permanent marker to create the bird's eye.
4. I've mentioned it before, the satin ribbon frays as soon as you look at it so handle it as little as possible.
5. I used Night of Navy ink to stamp the sentiment. I didn't think Bashful Blue was powerful enough.

Stuff Ups:
1. As I said, I was planning to emboss the stamping on the bird's wing in white and then sponge over it with Bashful Blue but my embossing powder was clumpy and no good. It wouldn't stick properly to the Versamark.
2. The Polka dot embossing folder was a little too small for the layer size that I wanted so one end is a little bit sparse with dots.
3. My SNAIL adhesive is really hard to use. It just doesn't want to turn and it is starting to dent my cardstock. It's very disappointing. I also left my back up double sided tape at work so I had to use my precious mini glue dots on the back of the polka dot embossed layer. Using tape rollers can flatten your embossing so it's always best to use peel-the-backing-off it tape (known as Sticky Strip in the Stampin' Up world).
4. My layers are always skewiff, never proportional.

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Island Oasis Birthday

I made two of these cards for two friends who's birthdays are in April. Actually they are on the same day! The colour scheme and basic layout of the card was cased from Shaz's Card Table. I added my own style and elements to the card to make it kate-ified.

Below is the insert I will write on then stick into the card. That way if I mess up what I'm writing I haven't ruined the card. It also looks nicer and if your card base is dark, a lighter coloured insert will make reading your written message easier.

I used the flower stamp from the Tropical Party stamp set and added a tiny pearl to the centre of each flower. You could layer the insert on another colour, such as Rose Red, but I want to conserve my cardstock.

Cardstock: Tempting Turquoise, So Saffron, Rose Red, Whisper White, Island Oasis DSP.
Inks: Pumpkin Pie ink spot.
Stamps: Tropical Party.
Other: Modern label punch, 6mm Pumpkin Pie Grosgrain ribbon, dimensionals, Lattice embossing folder, big shot machine.
Non Stampin Up!: White stick on pearls from Kaiser, Versamark Dazzle - Frost, 'happy birthday' sentiment from Penny Black's Critter Party stamp set, Prima Flowers High Gloss Pebbles - Birds and Butterflies.

Tips and Tricks
1. The lattice embossing folder doesn't fully fit the length of card required for this project. I managed to press the card once, then align the impressions at the end of the card with the unpressed card inside the folder. Then I put it a little way into the big shot machine. That way it doesn't flatten the already embossed card. That all sounds wordy but I don't know how else to explain it.
2. Never press hard when cutting an embossed piece of card in a paper trimmer. You can crush and damage the embossing. Just use very gentle pressure, enough to stop it slipping.

Stuff Ups:
1. I forgot to allow extra card (only a few millimetres) for the embossing to 'shrink'. I had to trim down my base card to make it all the same length.
2. I wasn't too careful when peeling the pebbles of the backing sheet and the image ripped away from one of the pebbles. Always be gentle! They are a bit pricey for what they are so you don't want to waste them.
3. I would have heat embossed the palm fronds on the background if I hadn't lost my clear embossing powder. So frustrating!!

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Our Anniversary

This is hot off the press! It's the anniversary card I have made for my husband. Tomorrow is our second anniversary! Yay us! I'm super proud of this card. No casing, an all Kate design! I used a lot of different stamp sets too.

As usual, the photo doesn't do justice to the card. I used the Colour Coach to get my colour selection - Pear Pizazz, Cajun Craze and More Mustard. I added Very Vanilla because it needed something else.

My gorgeous husband loved the card. The first thing he said was, "Ooh, I like the colours!" Well done Colour Coach! Jason gave me a stunning jewellery box for our anniversary! I have been wanting one for so long, it's just perfect!

Cardstock: Pear Pizazz (in colour), Cajun Craze, More Mustard, Very Vanilla.
Inks: Pear Pizazz, Cajun Craze, More Mustard, Versamark.
Stamps: Itty Bitty Bits (hearts on the tags), So Happy For You (background heart on pear pizazz), Teeny Tiny Sentiments, A Happy Heart (retired - big hearts).
Other: Big shot machine, Top Note die, Lattice embossing folder, Hemp twine, Itty Bitty buttons, mini glue dots, stick on pearls, modern label punch, dimensionals, paper piercing tool and mat pack, sponge.
Non Stampin Up!: Fiskars tag punch.

Tips and Tricks:
1. As in my last card post, I ran the Cajun Craze and More Mustard cardstock through the big shot machine together with the top note die. I trimmed the more mustard along the perforation to get that nice border of Cajun Craze. Next I used snail adhesive to stick them together before putting it through the big shot again in the lattice embossing folder.
2. You can't really tell but I put a round Itty Bitty button on each Cajun Craze heart on the tags and a tiny pearl in the centre of each More Mustard heart on the tags to tie in with the pearls on the sentiment. I want to buy the tiny tag punch from Stampin Up! because I find this Fiskars tag punch to be too big. Also the tiny tag punch punches a hole in the top of the tag and the Fiskars doesn't. I had to use my paper piercer which looked messy. I should have used my eyelet tools but forgot I had them till after I finished.
3. The 'Happy Anniversary' sentiment is stamped in Pear Pizazz ink but you can't tell in the photo. I also sponged around the label in Pear Pizazz ink.
4. The Top note die cut is popped up on dimensionals to compensate for the bulkiness of the twine. The sentiment is also on dimensionals.

Stuff Ups:
1. I pulled the twine too tightly when tying it and it cut into the cardstock a little.
2. On the insert that I wrote on inside the card, I accidentally wrote on it portrait-ways (standing vertically) when the card is made in landscape (stands horizontally). I hope I explained that correctly! I didn't want to rewrite it because it came from the heart and I didn't think hubby would care much less notice!
3. Overall the tags are very clumsy. I also forgot to sponge around them with pear Pizazz ink. I would have liked the tags smaller and more precise in their creation but you gotta work with what you've got.

Monday, March 21, 2011

A new colour scheme

I've made two similar cards this week using a colour scheme I would not normally choose. I had some gorgeous Sunny Garden DSP that was screaming to be used. Also my Stampin' Up order came in so I had new toys to play with. These cards, while probably similar to other cards out there, were again from my own mind. I'm glad these worked out because one I attempted earlier in the week just doesn't do it for me.

The 'Thank You' card I made for my Mum and Dad. The 'Congratulations' card I made for my nephew's housewarming.

Cardstock: Daffodil Delight, Poppy Parade, Peach Parfait, Pear Pizzazz, Sunny Garden DSP.
Inks: Poppy Parade inkpad.
Stamps: Curly Cute, Punch Potpourri.
Other: Bird punch, Top Note die, Big Shot machine, Daffodil Delight grosgrain ribbon, Modern word label punch, stick on pearls, 2 way glue pen, mini glue dots.
Non Stampin' Up: Polka dot embossing folder by Cuttlebug, Prima Flowers.

Tips and Tricks:
1. I cut out the Poppy Parade and Peach Parfait top notes at the same time, then trimmed the Peach one along the perforation line. I glued them together with SNAIL (glue tape) and then put it in the polka dot embossing folder and ran it through the big shot.
2. I used a 2 way glue pen to glue the leafy branch to the card.
3. On the 'congratulations' card, I cut an extra piece of ribbon and threaded it around the base ribbon. I find that easier than trying to tie it all at once.

Stuff Ups:
The only one (omg, only one!) is that the 'congratulations' sentiment is glued on crooked. I was so annoyed that I didn't spot it until after the glue had set.

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Hardworking Birthday

This card was designed for my brother for his birthday. This is a purely me card - no casing at all! I am pleased that I got to use a new blokey stamp set that I bought a while ago. I also made an extra one of these for my nephew as it's his birthday next week. These guys are in their twenties and thirties so I tried to make the card age appropriate.

You can also see how the summer sun and water restrictions have affected our poor grass - it was lovely and lush in the Valentine's photo, now it's almost dead. Thankfully it should grow back soon since the weather is getting cooler.

Cardstock: Crumb Cake, Chocolate Chip, Brocade Blue (which is retired, you could use Baja Breeze instead), Very Vanilla and some Blueberry Crisp DSP.
Inks: Chocolate Chip ink pad and Versamark.
Other: Oval punch, Scallop oval punch, silver embossing powder, sponge, big shot machine, dimensionals, piercing tool, piercing guide and mat pack.
Non Stampin' Up: Sizzix textured embossing folder (probably 'burlap'), heat tool, screw top brads, Clear stamps 'Tools' (http://www.sullivans.net/ though I bought mine from Starfish Lane in Mt Lawley), 'Birthday wishes' sentiment from Wendy Irving Collections: Expressions Clear Cling Stamps -  'Occasions', distressing tool.

Tips and Tricks
1. I used a distressing tool to scuff the edges of the base card, chocolate chip and brocade blue layers.
2. I used chocolate chip ink to roughly sponge around the edges of the card base, the scalloped oval and the oval.
3. I put the chocolate chip layer up on dimensionals to compensate for the screw top brads in the top right corner. If you don't, you end up with an obvious bump where the brads are.
4. On the inside of the card I use another birthday stamp as the sentiment and another Tools stamp - a man pushing a trolley full of tools like he's in a hardware store. I used chocolate chip to continue the theme.

Stuff Ups:
1. I tried to stamp the inside of the card after I had attached the details to the front. The result was a messy. incomplete impression so I had to redo the base. Always stamp the base first!
2. There was a problem with the trolley stamp - one small portion was cut too thin so it didn't imprint on the card properly. I used a chocolate chip marker to fill in the mssing details.

Sunday, February 6, 2011

Finally, the Valentine's Card

This is the card that I've made for my husband for Valentine's day. I didn't look to other cards for design ideas or colours, I just chose the colours and played with design ideas until I found what made me happy.

Cardstock: Basic Black, Real Red and Very Vanilla.
Inks: Basic Black marker, Real Red marker, Real Red ink pad, Versamark.
Stamps: Wonderful Favourite, A Happy Heart.
Other: Black embossing powder, heat tool, big shot machine, sponge, oval punch, dimensionals, paper piercer and mat pack.
Non Stampin' Up: Polka dot embossing folder, red heart brads.
Tips and Tricks:
1. It may be hard to tell, but the base card is black.
2. I used markers to colour the hearts and crosses stamp. Originally I also used Glossy Accents on the red part of the stamp, but it made the ink run within the gloss and I lost the definition.
3. The 'to my' and 'husband' ovals are sponged around the edges with Real Red ink.
4. The words 'to my wonderful husband' are embossed in black.
5. I used the paper piercer guide that comes with the mat pack to position the heart brads and get them evenly spaced.
6. I have made an insert on Very Vanilla with a red heart brad and another stamp on it from the A Happy Heart stamp set. It will be easier to write on that than black.

Stuff Ups:
1. The Glossy Accents that I've mentioned at least twice already!
2. There is the tiniest of smudges on the hearts and crosses stamped image.
3. The embossed words are a little bit uneven in places.
4. The sponging - I'm not 100% happy with it and I'm not sure why.

Monday, January 31, 2011

Where am I?

I'm back to work so I'm very busy - the start of the school year always is. I've been spending my spare time setting up my classroom and preparing work for the kids. I will get the Valentine's card fixed and upload this weekend (hubby is at the cricket on Sunday) I promise!