Thursday, 5 March 2015

Sympathy Card

Hello!  A friend asked me to make a sympathy card, and this is the result.  The main panel is sponged with Distress Inks (Scattered Straw,Victorian Velvet, Seedless Preserves, Chipped Sapphire and a tiny bit of Black Soot) on very smooth cream cardstock.  Next, I misted a pretty damask background stamp (Hero Arts) with with water and "stamped" it on the distress ink.  It gives a very pretty, subtle effect, and the more ink you have applied, the more striking the effect is.  I heat set the panel before embossing, and stamped the flower (Penny Black) in black pigment ink and embossed it in black.  Where possible, I like to use the same colour of ink to stamp as emboss in case there are any gaps in the embossing powder.  Of course with semi-opaque and translucent powders you can use other colours for interesting effects too...but that will be a project for another day!  I added a few impressions of the same flower in Chipped Sapphire as well as a border stamp (Stampers Anonymous - Tim Holtz) on the bottom in Wild Honey.  The card base is Naturals Ivory (Stampin' Up) and the accent strips are two shades of purple (an eggplant, and Stampin' Up's Rich Razzleberry).  The eggplant strip has the same damask print stamp used with Hero Arts shadow ink in Raspberry Jam.  I like these inks for stamping on dark cardstock because they are semi-opaque, like chalk inks, and you see the colour interactions.  A pinkish dye ink would get lost on the dark purple, but the Shadow inks sit on top and add a luminosity to the paper that appeals to me.  To finish it off, I added three dots of Adirondack Liquid Pearls in Eggplant.  They went disastrously wrong so the whole effort had to be peeled off the card base and applied to a new card base and more care and attention applied to the squeezing and placing of the dots.

Thanks for stopping by!

Sunday, 25 January 2015

Birthday butterflies

Hello!  It's been a while - sorry for the absence.  I have been quilting lately more than stamping and I've also been knitting up a storm.  I've discovered the tremendous pleasures of knitting socks, and the even greater pleasure of wearing them.

Here is a card I made recently for a birthday celebration this week.  It's an Artful Stamper image, stamped and embossed in gold.  There is a bit Art Institute Glitter in the embossing powder, which gives it an extra twinkle.  Not too much, but just enough.  The butterflies are coloured with Tombows and blended with a paintbrush.  I've accented with Stickles (speaking of - there are new colours coming out!  so exciting!). The image is matted on brushed gold (should have used my perfect layers tool - doh!) and elegant eggplant.  The blue accent strip is one that was lying on my desk, waiting for this card to be created.  The card base is a 5 1/2" square in cherry cobbler.  The accent dots are Stream Adirondack liquid pearls.  I've placed the leaf so that it will be guaranteed to fold in a card (doh!) or require an enormously oversized card. These are things that could be avoided with some advance planning, but I don't stamp that way.  I normally just pick a stamp, and start there, building the card as I go.  I tend not to have a final "vision" in mind.  How about you?  How do you approach designing your cards?

Thanks for stopping by.

Wednesday, 3 September 2014

Snowy scene Christmas card

Hello!  Here's a card I made last night when my mother came over for a stamping evening.  I had been experimenting with this stamp (Hero Arts) with different ink and paper combinations, trying a lot of different blues, mostly in chalk inks.  I settled on this one, in Blackbird Colorbox Fluid Chalk, stamped on Whisper White (Stampin' Up) and matted on silver mirror cardstock. I added a sentiment (Cornish Heritage Farms), embossed in silver. The card base is Basic Black, with a Brushed Silver accent strip.  There are some of the stars accented with Diamond stickles, but when I make this again, I will use Stardust.  Diamond has a hint of gold that isn't quite right here.

I know it's early to be thinking about Christmas cards, but I usually make them in batches over the summer holiday and I didn't this year, so I am feeling behind.  This card is a good candidate for a big batch - quick and easy but great results.  The secret here is to use a stamping mat to get a good impression.  Also, Sauron the Scanner is pointing out to me that the card would also benefit from a stamp positioner.  I don't often bother, but for a big batch, it would probably be worth it for the sentiment.

Can you believe it's September already?  I had a great vacation this summer and I hope you did too.  What are your plans for Christmas cards this year?  Do you send them?  Do you make them?

Saturday, 12 July 2014

Magazine giveaway

Hello!  I have gone through some of my stamping magazines and would like to make room for future new ones. Would anyone local like to give them a new home?  If you'd like them and you're not local, you'd need to be willing to pay shipping (or for me to visit and bring them with me!).  They are mostly Scrap and Stamp Arts, a few Stampers' Sampler/Take Ten and a couple of Paper Crafts.  Leave me a comment and let me know if you would like an armload of stamping magazines!

Tuesday, 1 July 2014

Thank you teacher #4

Hello! Happy Canada Day!  Here's another thank you card for teachers.  I started with a sheet of paper that some time ago I had spritzed and sprayed with Dylusions ink in shades of pink and red.  Quite often I make extra when I have my spray station in operation.  (My spray station is the top of the deep freeze in the furnace room, so it can't be a permanent fixture.) I also like to mop up the extra colour with scrap paper and keep it on hand for future projects.

Once I had selected my Dylusion-y paper, I chose this wonderful negative image poppy stamp from Hero Arts.  I stamped it in Blackbird fluid chalk ink (Colorbox) because I wanted a very juicy ink, but also the detail of a dye rather than a pigment.  I also didn't want to emboss it in this case.  I trimmed it out, mounted it on some black then spent quite a bit of time auditioning card bases for it.  This is the part I always find trickiest, because some papers wash out the vibrant colours and neutrals can be too stark a contrast.  I often find that Japanese tsumugi paper is the answer, as it seems to be richly coloured enough to balance out the intensity of the Dylusions.  This card base is a lovely warm smoked paprika colour.  (I got mixed packs of notecards at my local art store - Wallacks, but if you can't source it in your local store, check out The Japanese Paper Place - they have links to retail locations and on-line sellers too.)  To finish off the card, I added a few dots of Black Diamond stickles to the poppies with centres showing.

Do you have any plans for Canada Day?  I will be making strawberry jam (how is that patriotic?  it's red and makes use of the wonderful berries that are at their peak locally) and watching World Cup soccer.  And quilting.  Fun day!

Thanks for stopping by!

Monday, 30 June 2014

Thank you teachers #3

Hello!  Here's another thank you card I made, using the same techniques described in this post.  I really like the shimmery Lumiere paint with the wooden stamps (green accent strip).  I learned this watercolor technique on the On-line watercolour class I took recently and tried it with the Stampin' Up watercolor wonder crayons.  Easy and fun!  The trick is to wait until the adjacent areas are dry so you don't get too much "running".  Also, use minimal layering of colour as the crayons are more opaque than regular watercolour paints and you can cover up some of the subtlety you might be trying to get.

Thanks for stopping by!  Hope you get a chance to do some stamping/painting today.

Sunday, 29 June 2014

Thank you teachers! #2

Hello!  Here's another thank you card I made for the teachers this year.  I had a pretty stamped and painted panel on hand, along with a pretty strip of background paper, also on hand.  A quick arrangement and some foam mounting tape, a Not Quite Navy card base and the thank you card was done!

Now, more about the "on hand".  My mother and I have been getting together for stamping sessions on Tuesday evenings and last Tuesday we were at her house trying out some wonderful handcarved wooden stamps.  We were using them with Jacquard paints to stamp on fabric, but I had some leftover paint  on my transfer surface (aka yogurt lid!) and I couldn't bring myself to wash it away.  There were some scraps of pretty sage green around so I used up the rest of the paint stamping on those.  The delicate shimmer is just lovely, I think.

After we were done with the fabric experiment, we moved on to trying out Stampin' Up's watercolour wonder crayons.  These are watersoluble pigment sticks, not sure if Stampin' Up still sells them or not.  Anyway, I stamped this nice poppy (Stampendous) and embossed it in black.  For the background, I coloured directly on the paper with some soft greys and blues and added some darker ones in the corner, then blended with a wet brush.  These crayons are semi-opaque, so that is something to remember when adding additional colour.  (This is different from using regular watercolour paints.)  When it came to the flowers, I just lifted the colour directly from the crayon with a wet brush and layered up from lightest to darkest, starting with yellows, going to orange and then red and burgundy.  The final step was to add in some Distress Ink in Iced Spruce to cover up the big orange blob on the background, obtained by stacking two poppy panels that were not quite dry.  Oops.  You can blot away some of the pigment, but not all....

Thanks for stopping by! Hope you have a good weekend.  I plan to keep having an excellent weekend.  Yesterday included a trip to Foster Family Farm in North Gower for some baskets of fresh strawberries (delicious!!) and an outing to see the Royal Canadian Mounted Police musical ride in the evening.  I have seen it many times and it is always wonderful.  Not sure what we'll be doing on Canada Day (July 1), but something fun I hope! I will also need to turn some of those wonderful berries into freezer jam, as well as a splurge on strawberry shortcake :-)