Monday, November 29, 2010

Dad's birthday card

So how do you feel when you have a masculine card to make?  I always start a masculine card with a bit of anxiety.  Can I make it special without all those usual accents and embellishments?   I think the trick is to start with a great image and a great layout.  Once you have that, it's not so bad.  At least this one came together easily and I credit the layout for most of it.

My dad is a big time golfer.  He is retired now and living in Arizona so he golfs several times a week year round.  It's great for him; exercise, companionship and he's always been competitive so he can keep that going too.  To look at him, you'd never know he is in his late 60's.

Well, for his birthday I pulled out my very old (and retired) SU golf set 'back 9.'  I got this one on ebay after it was retired.   I decided to pull out some old retired SU paper and worked with crumb cake and always artichoke.  I love the seam binding ribbon from the holiday mini.  It's so easy to work with and looks great on all my projects.  At AC Moore's black friday sale, I got this cool Tim Holz sizzix die.  I got 2 of these embossing folders for @5.00.  Great deal.  I roughed up the edges, paper pierced the edge of the bo-bunny polka dot paper and added a twine bow to the always artichoke ribbon.  I made the tag with a sentiment from a SU hostess set.

Oh and I sponged tim holtz antique linen on the edges of the very vanilla card stock that the golf  course image is on.

This baby will get off to the post office tomorrow and hopefully will arrive before Sunday.

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Winter Girl - Take 5

Now I know I am obsessed.  I had to redo Emma.  It was killing me that my stitching was crooked.   I had left the card out on the kitchen table and everytime I went past today I noticed the mistake.  Although I can usually fix most any stamping mistake, stitching is another thing all together.    So, after church and after the grocery shopping and after the cleaning and after making my birthday card for my father - then, I redid my Emma card.  And since you guys can probably relate, here I am again, posting my NEW re-created card.

This time around I wasn't taking any chances with my sew mini sewing machine.  As I mentioned, I don't have a lot of experience with the sewing and I don't always do a good job keeping everything straight.  So this time around,  I paper pierced the holes and hand stitched inside the holes.  It is time consuming but it does ensure that it is all straight.  And this time I used a different blue patterned paper.  This one is from the C-Thru rule company and is called fresh print clothes line Dew Drops.  And this time, I gave Emma brown hair, but otherwise, pretty much the same thing.  That is the beauty of the re-do's.  Once you have the design, they come together really fast.

Oh and one other thing - I think I claimed this was blueberry hill paper from PTI when I first posted.   It isn't, it's actually SU marina mist.

So, above is my 5th attempt at winter girl, and below are all the other rejects (just cause I thought you may want to see.) Oh and just to clarify, all the rejects get used.  They just go to people won't know they are rejects and love them anyway; think the island of misfit toys. 

Winter Girl - Take 4

Hi bloggers,
Do you ever get an idea in your head and then try multiple times to create your card to match that idea?  That is what happened with this card.  I started making her last week.  My first attempt had a multi-colored snowflake patterned paper.  When I finished the card, it just looked too busy because of the paper.  So, then I switched to a single color blue snowflake paper - in Baja Breeze.  But that one didn't look wintery to me, because I wasn't crazy about the blue.  So for try three, I worked with brown snowflakes on cream.  That one wasn't as busy and looked good, but the snowflakes on cream and brown just didn't feel very wintery.  So here is attempt 4 at this card.  I like the simplicity of the blue gingham and I think the polka dot embossing adds a little something.   I worked on these at my mother in laws this weekend, but didn't have all my supplies with me so I intended to finish her up after we got home.  She was all ready to be glued on, but I had been web surfing last night and this morning and noticed the My Favorite Things December contest that was 'stitching.'  I figured I could still add some stitching and include her in the contest.  I must admit, my stitching is still a very new technique for me, and my hand is a little wobbly still, so I'm sure my stitching is good enough to win, but it's worth submitting and giving a try.   Practice makes perfect - right?

I hope you are all enjoying this lovely Sunday.  Here in New England it is COLD.  22 degree now at 9:24am.  BRRR.  We put our tree up last night and the house is looking festive and fun.  This afternoon will be more stamping and football.  What better way to spend a late fall day?

Friday, November 26, 2010

BC 179 - color challenge

Hi Bloggers,

Are you all up bright and early today to hit those black friday sales?  If so, where are going and what are you buying?   I will not be setting an alarm on Friday, but I will head over to Michaels and AC Moore in my sweatpants and coffee to go mug shortly after I awake.  It's a great time to stock up on Tombo adhesive.  I hope they have the three packs, that way my 50% off coupon go farther!!!

Instead of shopping, I hope to get quite a bit of stamping done.    I have big plans to get some gift card packs finished, work on the birthday books and maybe start the christmas cards.  Hopefully I'll have some fun stuff to post later this weekend.

As for my card, this weeks color challenge was to use these colors:  Mustard, Rust and Blue.  When I saw the challenge I immediately thought of a modern/masculine card.  I used the sketch from Karin Giron's sweet sunday sketch challenge. 

I used my always stamp set to pattern on the circle/flower image on the main circle focal point.  I put the sentiment from a SU set.  The papers are an assortment and the colors are all SU - not quite navy, more mustard and very vanilla.  Thanks for looking and thanks for leaving a comment.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

card gift set

Do you have a 'go to' layout or card idea that you always go to when you need a quick and lovely card?  I do!  I use the A*muse colored papers and gingham to make a clean and simple card.  I find this card works with any small image.  I love doing this layout as a set.  This set is a group of 6 cards (two of each color.)  I whip them up, put them in a clear card box and voila - a perfect gift for a hostess or thank you.  I never grow tired of making these and all 6 of these came together during the finale of Dancing with stars last night - yes they are that quick.

These will go with me to a dinner next Tuesday for the hostess.  I hope she loves them.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Girls in white dresses

Hello bloggers,
I just had a wonderful Sunday.  I hope you did too.  First, I started my day at church and I got to witness my friend and her family dedicate their baby boy Austin.  I also enjoyed talking with some great friends and helping one friend take a step of faith.  Once home, my hubby and I enjoyed a nice (but cold) walk with the dogs and then while the Patriots played, I got to get some ink on some stamp sets.   I just finished up after the Patriots pulled out a very nice win against the colts.

So, what did I make?  I've been seeing several great blog posts for a MFT (My favorite things) challenge from the Sound of Music.  The challenge is to create a card based on the song 'a few of my favorite things.'  Since many other already used the snowflakes that stay on my nose theme and others used brown paper packages theme I decided to go with girls in white dresses.  I had this image from my friend Kim and I was dying to use some of my new PTI paper in Blueberry.  Isn't she darling?  Doesn't the thought of her put you in a good mood?  I hope so.  Thanks so much for looking. 

Friday, November 19, 2010

BC 178 - Thanksgiving

Don't you just LOVE thanksgiving?  There are so many reasons this is my favorite holiday.  Football, comfort foods, relaxing, family, America, Pilgrims, neighborleeness (is that a word?) and of course God - after all who are we thankful to???  In case you can't tell, I love thanksgiving and am so glad it is less than a week away.  I had so much fun with this weeks challenge.  I had picked up this stunning stamp from Bella Art last month. It is a beauty from Lockhart.  I have inked her up  a number of times sometimes with pencils, this time with the copics. I added some spica pen into the leaves to add that sparkle the sun puts on them in real life.  Hope you are enjoying your pre-holiday prep and aren't stressed out over those pies and sides!  Enjoy and thanks for leaving a comment!

Stamps:  Lockhart, sentiment from SU (retired)
paper: SU: More mustard (solid and DSP), chocolate chip &  very vanilla
Ribbon: SU more mustard
Extras: copics, spica pens, sewing (on sew mini), nesties (for square scallop)

Sunday, November 14, 2010

MFT class with Joanne Basile - Fab U lous!

Hi all,

I just couldn't wait to post the beautiful creations I made at Joanne Basile's class yesterday.  My stamping friend Kim and I had a fun girl stamping day yesterday as we took a short road-trip down to North Attleboro yesterday to visit the Right at Home Scrapbooking store.  Lunch at panera bread and a few hours at a great stamp/scrapbook store, what more could a girl want?

Aren't these two cards DARLING?  I made a third, but already sent it off as a thank you card.  If you ever get a chance to take a class with Joanne - do it.  So much fun and such beautiful finished products.

I came home with a snowflake die, several adorable patterned papers and, of course, a darling winter sweet innocence stamp.  I'll be putting ink on her this week and posting the finished product soon!

Friday, November 12, 2010

BC 177 - A card and a story

Hello bloggers,

Today I have a treat for you, but I'll warn you, it's a long post.

First, here is my bloggers challenge card - it was a sketch challenge and the recipe is just after the card!  The story follows after that.
Stamp:  My Favorite Things (image and sentiment)
Card Stock:  Old Olive, Early Espresso, very vanilla, designer paper (brand unknown)
Accessories:  Early Espresso SU ribbon, nestie die (for oval), onion wrapper (for texture on green put in cuttlebug) and, of course, copics to color in my lounging girl
Now on to the story - On Tuesday evenings I lead a womens bible study group with my church.  I love the ladies I've gotten to know over the last few months.   We have such a great group of women who are comfortable being real and transparent in sharing their life and faith stories each week.  This past week as we wrapped up a 6 week study called 'the journey' the questions in our weekly study challenged us to write our testimony and share it with someone.  Since I typed mine up, I figured I would share it with you - my blogger friends.  Again, I'll warn you, it's a little long and quite personal, but it's my story and I would love to hear your comments if you took the time to read it.

I grew up identifying myself as a Christian, but had no real understanding of God or Jesus.  I believed there was a God and recognized him in nature, but that was it.   I certainly had no idea of my sin. I was insecure about myself, but I never thought of myself as a sinner.  When I was a young mother, I went to a shower.  Many of the women were catholic and they were discussing going to confession.  I asked in shocked disbelief – what could you women have to confess?  It was inconceivable to me that these sweet middle aged women sitting in the living room of my daycare providers home could have anything to confess. 
 I had a plan for my life and worked hard to control my circumstances to match my plan. I worked hard in school, got a degree and started my career.   I married and had two beautiful healthy children and by the time I turned 35, I had achieved most of the things on my ‘life to do list’.  But I was not content.  I did not consider my children, husband or possessions a blessing.  I treated them as a curse.  The house needed cleaning.  The kids did not always behave.  My husband did not anticipate my every need.  I was anxious and restless and ever so busy.  Can you say selfish and ungrateful?  You bet.

I decided to go find a church.   The second church I visited was First Congregational Church of Hopkinton.   One of the first sermons I heard was about freedom in Christ.  A husband and wife shared how they were able to break free from negative thought patterns, restlessness and discontentment.   The wife (Traci) started meeting with me for breakfast once a week to do a one-on-one bible study.  While reading the book, I realized that I was a sinner and was separated from God because of it.  I prayed God, I need help and proclaimed that Jesus would be the Lord of my life from that point on.  As a new believer, I continued to meet with Traci.  She encouraged me to rearrange my priorities as a Christ follower.  I went to my boss and switched to a part time position.  I stopped striving for the career and instead prioritized my kids and husband.  Slowly the changes I was making began to have an impact.   The stress level in our home reduced and life started to have balance and meaning.   I joined BSF (a weekly bible study with daily questions) and through the daily study (over 8 years) learned to know and trust my God.

My husband and I have seen some very tangible situations where God’s hand was on our life.  Knowing Christ and believing God’s word as documented in the bible have given me a life of contentment and peace.  I also have purpose as a bible study facilitator.  It is such a blessing to get to know the other women in the bible study and see their lives change as they believe and trust God’s plan for their lives and circumstances.   I can’t image the chaotic and discontent life I would be living now if I hadn’t given my life to Christ 12 years ago.  Praise God that He met me where I was at all those years ago.

Monday, November 8, 2010

Sympathy Card

Hello blogger friends.  We had slushy snow this cold and dreary Monday.  Yuck and double yuck.  The good news is that the snow was mostly gone when I got home from work.  The bad news is that it was pitch black when I pulled in my driveway at 5:15pm.  Poor doggies only got their morning walk.  It was still raining pretty good and the thought of cold/dark walk didn't inspire me.

Today's post is a soft and subtle sympathy card.  A woman that my husband knows through a vendor at work lost her father and he wanted a card that the guys (and gal) at the office could send to her.

The image is from A*Muse and is one of my only A*Muse florals.  This one is very delicate and I added just a tad of bling using my spica pen.  It doesn't show in the picture but it does add a nice sparkle.

I'm loving this color scheme - so subtle and sweet.  I combined chocolate chip, very vanilla and so saffron.  I also stamped the inside and the envelope so it looks like a matched set.

I'm sure the woman appreciated the gesture of kindness from her work colleagues and I was happy to create this for them to use.

Saturday, November 6, 2010

Etsy Shop now open

Well, I finally did it!  I posted several items for sale in my Etsy shop.  In my shop I have listed some of the christmas cards you've seen posted here. In addition, I've posted some stamp sets that I decided (sigh) to get rid of.  I have so many stamp sets now that I really feel it's time to move some out and let other stampers enjoy them.  I posted the christmas sets and current sets up today.  It's actually kind of time consuming so I'll post some others up later.  Below is a list of all the stamp sets I will be selling.  The ones with an * are currently listed on Etsy.  The others haven't gone up yet, but if any of you are interested, let me know and I'll post them ASAP for you.

SU Star Studded Season*
SU Winter Post*
SU Circle Circus*
SU A little birdie told me
SU In the stars
SU so many scallops
SU Kindred Spirits
SU Twick or Tweet
SU lots of thoughts
SU So Very
SU Best Blossoms

Friday, November 5, 2010

BC 176 Patriotric

I almost didn't play along with the bloggers challenge this week.  The theme was patriotic and I have zero (zip) patriotic stamps.  I thought - I'll use MDS (my digital studio - SU's computer program) but when I looked there, they too had ZERO patriotic stamps.  I also am not a big fan of red, white and blue so up until last night my strategy was to just skip out this week and not do anything.  But then I decided to think about it and get creative.  When I think of patriotic I think freedom and liberty.  So many countries do not have freedom and liberty.  Many people I know are disgusted by Tuesday's election results (I live in very liberal MA) but even though I may have preferred some of the other candidates getting elected, I really appreciate our fair voting process and the democracy that our country enjoys.  So, I decided to make my sentiment about liberty and used MDS to create a cute little banner with the opening line from a patriotic song.

So for my image - I thought of our country and how beautiful it is.  My friend's lovely as a tree stamp set was sitting on the table (ready for over a month to go back to her) and I decided to ink her up one last time (before her return to her rightful owner) and picked up some great DSP in Pear Pizzaz, combined with crumb cake and whipped up this beauty.

Lovely as a Tree stamp set from SU
Sentiment typed and printed on crumb cake using MDS
Pear Pizzaz DSP, Whisper White CS, Crumb Cake CS
Pear Pizzaz ribbon, bakers twine (brown), SU punch, SU library clip, spica pen (to add bling to the tree.)