It's Not All Black and White

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Autumn Anniversary

I decided to pair up Fabulous Flowers with this delicious Cosmo Cricket line of papers called Gretel. I love the fall colors and the double-sided designs. All of the backs have a co-ordinating almost solid color on the back, just a bit of a distressed or dry brushed look. You can see I used one of the backs for the solid sage color behind the flower. The flower was stamped three times (chocolate chip, more mustard, ruby red) and cut to different sizes for layering. Then I finished it off with highlights of Star Dust Stickles. The scallops were cut with a pair of decorative scissors and rubbed along a chocolate chip ink pad, because they were getting lost in the design. The ribbon is from Stampin' Up's retired Rustic Retreat Ribbon Originals. My goal is to use up that entire card this season since it's full of fall colors and has been sitting here too long. The sentiment (Hero Arts) is stamped in chocolate chip on more mustard. Everything is adhered to a white card base.

What's In It:
Stamps: Stampin' Up Fabulous Flowers, Hero Arts Happy Anniversary
Paper: Papertrey Ink white, Cosmo Cricket: Gretel, More Mustard, Chocolate Chip
Ink: Chocolate Chip, More Mustard, Ruby Red
Other: SU Rustic Retreat Ribbon Originals, scalloped scissors, Star Dust Stickles

Sunday, September 23, 2007

Whale Wishes for Baby

Saturday, I finally got to meet some Splitcoast Stampers! Phyllis (HUTstamper), in the center of the pic, arranged for some of us in the greater Pittsburgh area to get together at a local scrapbook shop. Who was there? HUTstamper, CharmWarm, chickers089, epiphany, GolfCat69, inkyfingersinpa, M_A_N_D_Y, Nicely Done, seasonalstamper, Sherialane, s_anthony, Vicky Gould. The shop had a great crop area, and we had a wonderful time together. So many laughs. What a great bunch of ladies. Thanks to you all.
This is one of the cards I got done during our get together. I thought this cute whale from Stampin' Up's Whale Wishes set would make a darling baby card. I pressed the whale into the bashful blue ink pad, then colored over the words with my Night of Navy marker, and stamped onto Paper Accents pearlized white. I stamped the seaweed with Old Olive, then ran my aquapainter over it to smear the ink around a bit, giving it a more overall "greenness". The sentiment is from Curvy Verses, the background papers from Basic Grey's Gypsy line.
What's In It:
Stamps: Whale Wishes, Curvy Verses
Paper: Old Olive, Real Red, Paper Accents pearlized white heavy weight, Basic Grey Gypsy
Ink: Bashful Blue, Night of Navy, Old Olive
Other: photo corner punch, aquapainter, making memories brads

Friday, September 21, 2007

A Bit of a Funk

I've been in a bit of a stamping funk this week. First, I didn't even want to stamp. Then yesterday, I sat down to stamp...and, oh my, was it scary! So I just walked away. I did manage to make this simple card this morning though. It follows the guidelines for today's Limited Supply Challenge at Splitcoast: to use just three of four layers and simple embellishments.
I'm so excited to have finally used my Jolies Fleurs stamps from Lizzie Anne Designs that I bought at least a month ago. I'll definitely have to give it some more attention. Here, the flower is stamped on Paper Accents Pearlized white using Versafine black ink, as are the swirls and sentiment (Papertrey Ink's Butterfly Kisses). I wish you could see the shimmer. It even shows through your coloring and stamping. LOVE IT! The flower is colored with Stampin' Up markers (rose red, so saffron, almost amethyst) and the "pink" is an aquapainter with rose red ink. That is all layered on Saffron prints paper (SU!) and highlighted with black layers and brads. The amethyst center is covered in Crystal Effects. I think I'll add some Star Dust Stickles to the petals too. It needs a bit more sparkle.
What's In It:
Stamps: Lizzie Anne Designs' Jolies Fleurs, Papertrey Ink's Butterfly Kisses
Paper: Paper Accents Pearlized white, SU! basic black and saffron prints
Ink: Versafine black, SU! rose red, almost amethyst, so saffron
Other: crystal effects, vintage brads (SU)

Sunday, September 16, 2007

A Couple of Micro Minis

The challenge over the weekend at Caardvarks was to do these micro mini cards, anything 2.5 x 3.5 inches or smaller. So I made a couple that are both 2.5 x 3.5.
This first one uses a slide mount (Thanks Rose Ann! I finally used one.)covered with Stampin' Up's retired Pool Party designer paper. A few rhinestones were glued on to finish the slide. Inside, I colored this darling turtle from Silly Sealife using Prismacolor pencils and Gamsol. The sentiment is by Verve Visual (Versafine black) and the ribbon American Crafts. Blue paper also Pool Party. White: Papertrey Ink. Corner rounder.

I decided to do two very differently styled cards. This second one started with the chipboard heart by Basic Grey, covered in Cosmo Cricket. After sanding off the edges, I sponged them with Close to Cocoa. All papers are Cosmo Cricket: Gretel line. Sentiment and card base on SU! very vanilla. I used my paper piercer to poke the holes for my pewter brads, and the cropodile for the large pewter eyelet. Sentiment by Papertrey Ink (Paper Tray) stamped in Versamagic Jumbo Java, which I molded to follow the curve of the heart. I used the corner rounder with the guard removed to make the scalloped edge. And the ribbon is Martha Stewart's piped nylon in 3/16 cloud.

Saturday, September 15, 2007

Caramel Apples

It felt like a beautiful fall day today. My husband and I took our dog for a walk in the brisk air, and it felt soooo good. So I was quite happy making this card. The colors, and subject matter, remind me of caramel apples. Mmmmmm.

I didn't think I had any "almost card pieces" to do Julee's Mojo Monday challenge this week. But I was cleaning my desk today and found a meager little stash, including this already colored bucket of apples. I added the white highlights with my Sakura white glaze pen and started layering, adding in a few background papers. I shaped the sentiment layer by punching all four corners of a 3/4 inch strip of paper with my corner rounder punch. The rest is pretty self-explanatory, so I'll just finish off with the recipe below:

The Goods:
Stamps: Stampin' Up Give Thanks, Papertrey Green Thumb
Paper: SU! confetti white, chocolate chip, certainly celery prints, retired Sassy (the red), Basic Grey Perhaps (the caramel)
Ink: Versamagic Jumbo Java, black StazOn, for watercoloring: real red, certainly celery, going gray, so saffron, old olive, close to cocoa
Other: corner rounder, ticket corner punch, Marvy giga scalloped and mega circle punches, coluzzle, aquapainter, Lasting Impressions antique brads, Sakura white glaze pen

Friday, September 14, 2007

Verve Visual Card Contest

I've been remiss. I somehow manage to miss telling you that Verve Visual has a card contest going on, and the prizes ROCK! Among several prizes up for grabs are some of the new October stamp releases. These are so hot, I don't even have my sets yet. But I've seen the artwork, and trust me, you'll want these! You still have until September 26 to enter. You can get all the info here.

The Friday Funny

Okay, I don't even have children, but this is the second week in a row for a parent/child joke.

Daddy's Gonna Eat Your Fingers

I was packing for my business trip and my three year old daughter was having a wonderful time playing on the bed. At one point she said, "Daddy, look at this," and stuck out two of her fingers. Trying to keep her entertained, I reached out and stuck her tiny fingers in my mouth and said, "Daddy's gonna eat your fingers," pretending to eat them. I went back to packing, looked up again and my daughter was standing on the bed staring at her fingers with a devastated look on her face. I said, "What's wrong, honey?" She replied, "What happened to my booger?"


Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Poppy Fields

This card is made with today's sketch challenge over at Splitcoast Stampers. I wanted to use my new Oh, So Lovely set, and I knew I wanted the poppies to be red. So from there, I chose my background paper and other colors. I stamped the flowers several times with Onyx black Versafine ink on watercolor paper, then colored with an aquapainter, including some blue background. I added Star Dust Stickles to the flowers and some matching crystal brads at the top of the card. That *gorgeous* wrinkled brown ribbon by May Arts is from Verve Visual, and I'm running out! ***gasp*** Time for an emergency order. Well, that's pretty much it. Thanks for stopping by.

What's In It:
Stamps: Stampin' Up Oh, So Lovely and Papertrey Ink Faux Ribbon
Paper: Papertrey white, choc chip, soft sky, watercolor, Starfish Designs background paper
Ink: Versafine Onyx Black, versamagic jumbo java, SU real red, old olive, only orange, pumpkin pie, so saffron, soft sky, cool caribbean
Other: Making Memories crystal brads, Star Dust stickles, may arts ribbon, marvy giga scalloped square punch, aquapainter, dimensionals

Monday, September 10, 2007

What a Cutie!

This Hambo dog sure makes me smile, so I paired him up with a great sentiment by Verve Visual, "sending you smiles". I stamped him with black Versafine on Stampin' Up's watercolor paper and colored with classic inks and an aquapainter.

NOTE: Be sure to give your stamped images some "ground", so they're not floating around in mid-air.

After it was dry, I added the chocolate chip sentiment. I put Star Dust Stickles over the three spots on the dog's collar, just cause he's so special.


Stamps: Thoughtful Phrases by Verve Visual and dog by Hambo stamps

Paper: Stampin Up's very vanilla, chocolate chip, close to cocoa and watercolor paper, EK Success mini dots and K&Co. polka dots

Ink: black Versafine; SU! chocolate chip, close to cocoa, certainly celery, mellow moss, real red, brocade blue, soft sky

Other: Marvy giga scalloped and mega oval punches, SU! photo corner punch, SU! celery grosgrain, Lasting Impressions antique brads, aquapainter, Star Dust Stickles

Sunday, September 9, 2007

Rolling "IN" the Mojo

Okay, so I'm not *rolling* in the mojo, but I did use a couple of IN colors to do Julee's Mojo Monday challenge, which was a sketch challenge this week. And yeah, I needed a title.

The bottom layer is Soft Sky, embossed with a Cuttlebug Textile folder, and rubbed with Pink Grapefruit Versamagic ink (a perfect match for Groovy Guava). The Guava layer is stamped with Papertrey's Beautiful Blooms. Solid leaves in Cloud White and the dotted outline leaves in Pink Grapefruit. The flowers are done in black Stazon and colored with Prismacolor pencils and Gamsol. I gave each a light shadow with my aquapainter and soft sky ink, then pierced in the stems. I mixed together a few of the words from Beautiful Blooms for the sentiment (Jumbo Java) and added the tiny flower (Pink Grapefruit with Sakura glitter pen center) Layer that circle over a large Cuttlebug flower die cut. I finished by gluing on a few little rhinestones to balance out the design. You can see I took the color scheme from the pictured ribbon, which I ended up not even using.

Stamps: Papertrey Ink Beautiful Blooms
Paper: papertrey ink white, Stampin' Up! soft sky, groovy guava and chocolate chip
Ink: SU soft sky, versamagic dew drop inks in pink grapefruit, jumbo java and cloud white
Other: cuttlebug textile embossing folder and flower die cut, sakura glitter pen, paper piercer, rhinestones, prismacolor pencils and Gamsol, aquapainter

Friday, September 7, 2007

A Friday Funny

I get some pretty funny emails, especially from one of my friends in particular. I've been meaning to start sharing one each Friday. Well, today's the day I finally get it done. As I said, this is from a circulating email, so you may have heard it already.


A father passing by his son's bedroom was astonished to see that his bed was nicely made and everything was picked up.
Then he saw an envelope, propped up prominently on the pillow that was addressed to "Dad." With the worst premonition he opened the envelope with trembling hands and read the letter.
Dear Dad:
It is with great regret and sorrow that I'm writing you. I had to elope with my new girlfriend because I wanted to avoid a scene with Mom and you. I have been finding real passion with Stacy and she is so nice. But I knew you would not approve of her because of all her piercings, tattoos, tight motorcycle clothes and the fact that she is much older than I am. But it's not only the passion...Dad she's pregnant. Stacy said that we will be very happy. She owns a trailer in the woods and has a stack of firewood for the whole winter. We share a dream of having many more children.
Stacy has opened my eyes to the fact that marijuana doesn't really hurt anyone. We'll be growing it for ourselves and trading it with the other people that live nearby for cocaine and ecstasy. In the meantime we will pray that science will find a cure for AIDS so Stacy can get better. She deserves it. Don't worry Dad. I'm 15 and I know how to take care of myself. Someday I'm sure that we will be back to visit so that you can get to know your grandchildren.
Your Son John

P.S. Dad, none of the above is true. I'm over at Tommy's house. I just wanted to remind you that there are worse things in life than the report card that's in my center desk drawer.
I love you.
Call me when it's safe to come home.


Thursday, September 6, 2007

Still no autumn in the air

It's still balmy around here, hot and humid. So, fall is not in the air, but it's in my craft room. I finally pulled out one of my new stamps to make a card today, using yesterday's sketch challenge from Splitcoast. I stamped this Stampin' Up! Seasonal Whimsey fall scene three times (once each in old olive, purely pomegranate, and pumpkin pie) so that I could cut out the pumpkin and leaves to layer over the green stamp. I had tried coloring with markers a couple times but just was not getting a good impression. I layered this on Purely Pomegranate, Chatterbox's Nook Garden Floral, and Old Olive. The old olive is stamped randomly with the lady bug trail from Papertrey Ink's Little Lady set. I think it does a decent job of mimicking the wind trails in the main image. The sentiment got prettied up a bit with the pumpkin pie leaf, a ticket corner punched Purely Pomegranate layer, and a few little rhinestones. I added Star Dust Stickles to the main image, the pumpkin leaf, and a bit of the background paper. The ribbon is Stampin' Up's Purely Pomegranate.

I really like this Seasonal Whimsey set from Stampin' Up. I think it's a little different and reminds me (but not too much) of Van Gogh's Starry Night. I think the winter scene is going to look even better.

Stamps: Stampin' Up Seasonal Whimsey, Papertrey Ink Little Lady
Paper: old olive, purely pomegranate, chatterbox nook garden floral, papertrey ink white
Ink: old olive, purely pomegranate, pumpkin pie
Other: rhinestones, star dust stickles, ticket corner punch, SU! purely pomegranate double stitched ribbon

Thanks Amy!

Josh and I just got back from picking up the car after yesterday's dentist fiasco. So now I can share this GORGEOUS card with you. I got it last week from Amy Westerman. I'm just so proud of her. Her cards have always been great, but she has kicked it up another notch lately to meet her goals. She now works with Verve Visual, Caardvarks, and Craft Critique to name a few.

Thanks Amy for thinking of me and sending the beautiful card. You go girl!

My Life: Updated

I'm separating these posts so that you can choose which to read and which to skip over. So, here's where I've been for the past week, since you and I both know I haven't been here blogging.

My mom's cancer is eating her bones, particularly her femur, to the point that it was ready to break just from her own body weight. So her doctor sent her to the emergency room as the only means of getting a bed in the hospital so that she could have surgery: drilling a whole down her leg bone from hip to knee to insert a metal rod and pins to support her. Once the cancer is in remission, the bones will rebuild themselves. My parents arrived at the emergency room at 2:30 in the afternoon last Wednesday. I arrived at about 5:30 in the afternoon. They FINALLY got her a room at two o'clock IN THE MORNING!!! So I had to get a security guard to walk me to my car in the now closed parking lot in not the best part of town. I get to bed about three a.m. Then, Thursday through Sunday I split my time between visiting my mom, cleaning my house a little and sleeping. Sunday, I visit my mom and come home to a house full of people my husband had invited over a few weeks ago. They stick around for an enjoyable but tiring (for me) evening until sometime past midnight. Monday my mom got discharged and went home, so I pretty much layed around all day. Aaaaah...bliss.

Tuesday I make the 3 -1/2 hour round trip drive to my mom's, staying all day cleaning, doing laundry, picking up medicines, putting dinner together. While there, my aunt and a visiting friend both ask if I'm staying the night or for a few days to help my mom. Feeling guilty that I had not planned to do this, I say I can do whatever. I did, however, go home.

Wednesday, I have a dentist appointment for a cleaning, exam, and tooth extraction. You know, because I haven't been having enough fun already. As promised, the worst part was the Novocaine, and the tooth is out before I even know what's going on. Have you ever passed out? I have the unfortunate tendency of doing so when having blood drawn. The point being, I KNOW what it feels like when I'm about to pass out. I'm standing at the counter, waiting to pay my dentist bill, and the feeling's coming on strong. "Is there somewhere I can lie down? I feel really dizzy." The receptionist's response it to look at me like I'm crazy and tell me I can sit in the lobby if I really want. Sparing only a second to consider what a moron she is, I book it to a lobby seat and start to put my head between my knees, since my only other options are lying on the floor or falling into a boneless heap on the floor...not cool, either of them. Then I remember the dentist's dire warning: do not spit, smoke, use a straw or BEND OVER as this could result in the blood clot falling out, causing "dry socket" and a pain so unbearable even narcotics will not help. Okay, back to a sitting position. I am now terrifying all of the small children in the office getting their back-to-school cleanings. One mother insists on bringing me a cool, damp paper towel, as, according to her, I'm "looking pretty green". The receptionist at this point decides that yes, maybe I should lie down, and directs me to one of the dentist chairs in the back, which she, of course, leaves in the upright position. So, I'm trying to slink down as far as I can to get some blood back to my brain, while at the same time text messaging my mother-in-law for a ride home and explaining to the dentist (with a large wad on gauze shoved in the back of my mouth) what is going on. I finally feel well enough to stand up, so I slink back to the counter in all my shameful indignity to pay my bill and then sit in my car until my ride arrives. Thank goodness MIL was home, only ten minutes away and actually did come right away. The rest of the day consisted of a pressure headache (due to the near unconsciousness), almost passing out each time I got off the couch for several hours, and eating tiny pieces of cut up spaghetti for dinner like a pre-schooler.

And if you've read this far, thank you! I hope I didn't sound too irritating, whiny, or downtrodden. I've taken the time to rest and rejuvenate. My parents have been really good, appreciative, and undemanding. It's me that feels I should be there as much as I can, not them. My husband has been so supportive, even though I wigged out on him a couple of times. Today has been pleasantly uneventful. I even stamped. I'll post that card next.

{{{HUGS}}} to all. Thank you for the kind cards, comments and support.