Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Sympathy Cards

Hello. I'm trying to wrap up 2011. We've been busy today putting away most of the Christmas decorations and taking down the main Christmas tree. I'm also packing for a trip while nursing a bad back flareup. The good news though is that it appears that I am finally over the colds I've had just about all of December.

I have a couple of cards to share. I am sure I am not alone in the cardmaking world when I say that sympathy cards are difficult to create. You want to let the recipient know how much you care about their loss but it is so hard to strike the right balance. Unfortunately I've had two occasions where I've had to send a sympathy card in the past few months.

My first card uses the bird The Cat's Pajamas The Tweetest Things stamp set. I stamped it onto the solid side of one of the MME patterned papers with white ink and then sprinkled white embossing powder and heat set it. I placed it in the matching Home Tweet Home CutUps to cut out. I combined it with the Tim Holtz Birdcage diecut. All the paper is from the My Mind's Eye Paris and Co pad which has been majorly underused.

For my second card I kept with the imagery of the bird flying free although this time I just cut it from plain white cardstock. After cutting, I used an embossing folder to add texture. All the paper is from the My Mind's Eye Lost and Found Rosy collection.

This blog is going to be pretty quiet for the remainder of the year as I will be visiting family. I am also busy working on some new release projects due early in January including Sweet November, C.C. Designs and The Cat's Pajamas.


Sunday, December 25, 2011

Merry Christmas Everyone

I just wanted to say Merry Christmas to all family,  friends, fellow design team members and blog readers. I appreciate all of you. I realize there are a lot of blogs out there and I am deeply honored and humbled that you take the time to stop by my little spot on the internet. It amazes me the connections I've made this year, in Russia, Spain, Canada and all over the USA. I wish for you all a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.

I haven't really taken a lot of photos of my decorations this year but I do have a few to share. 

Until next time......

Saturday, December 24, 2011

Christmas Card Shortcuts

I hope you are having a wonderful Christmas Eve. I'm busy preparing for dinner tonight for family. My son Dylan and granddaughter Clara are coming over tonight. I got smart this year with the toys vs clothes problem. Clara is all about the toys being three years old so clothes do not interest her in the least. So the box that contains all the clothes has a small and favorite type toy in it so she at least likes that part of it! Learned that trick last year. And I can't wait until she opens her big present. She is going to be one happy little girl.

I have yet more Christmas cards to share with you featuring a great shortcut. I received a set of tags from Danielle from the Fat Cat Stamper blog as a prize (thanks Danielle). Each of them were so unique and beautifully made. Those who know me well, know that it's understood that the gifts under the tree have to actually match the tree! Unfortunately these did not so that meant I would not use them as gift tags.  So....what to do...they were too gorgeous to go to waste! I decided to use them as the centerpiece for additional cards. For three of them I had paper to match, for the other two I just found paper that I thought went with them. I limited myself to only two patterns for each card to further expedite the process. I kept the cards rather simple as the tags were so detailed. Easy, fun and a great shortcut to Christmas card making.

Products: Tags by Danielle Lounds, Basic Grey dp and jewels, My Mind's Eye dp, PTI buttons and felt, My Favorite Things Die-namics, Memory Box die

Merry Christmas!

Friday, December 23, 2011

In a Manger

I have a few more Christmas cards that have been mailed but haven't been shared here yet.

I normally do not care for the Nativity scene to be what I term "cute-si-fied" but I made an exception for the In a Manger set by My Favorite Things. Especially since it included lambs as Jesus is often referred to as "the lamb of God". I kept the layout and embellishments simple.

Products: My Favorite Things stamp and Die-namics, Echo Park, Webster's Pages and Crate dp, Kaisercraft pearls, Copic Markers
Copics: Lambs-E40, E81, R01, 0; Clothing-BG0000, BG70, BG10, BG72, W00, E40, E41, E42; Cane-W1, W2, W5; Manger-E21, E25, E29, W5; Straw-E30, E31, E33

The next card features My Favorite Things Inspired by Winter. I made this specifically for my sister as she has a little gray house in the woods. I stamped the house image, masked it and then stamped the trees in the background. After coloring with Copics, I popped the stamped piece back in the Spellbinders die so I could ink around the images with Sky Blue ink and then applied a mixture of Ranger Stickles and white Flower Soft to represent snow. The patterned paper is from the Basic Grey Jovial 6x6 pad from last year. 

Products: My Favorite Things stamp and sentiment, Basic Grey dp, May Arts ribbon, Kaisercraft pearls, Making Memories glittered leaf, Memory Box die, Spellbinders Nestabilities, Copic markers
Copics: House/Windows-C1, C3, C5, Y15; Door-YG91, YG93, Chimney-E07, E08, E09

Next up features a fun, whimsical image by Whimsy Stamps. I had this stamp a while before finally getting it inked up. It's fairly simple with paper buttons so no extra postage required. 

Products: Whimsy Stamps, Echo Park dp, Divine Twine, My Favorite Things Die-namics, PTI sentiment, Flower Soft, Spellbinders Nestabilities, Copic Markers
Copics: E40, E81, 0, C1, C3, C5, C7, Y15, Y17, Y35, R22, R24, R27, B0000, B000, BG10, YG0000, YG91, YG93, BG0000

So busy around here as I sure it is for you too. I've had the third reincarnation of the same cold the past few days but I'm feeling better now. Have a great day!

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Bearing Christmas Gifts {TCP Tuesday 190}

Leigh is this week's TCP Tuesday (TCPTUES190) challenge hostess which as per usual is one of her fabulous sketches. My card features the Bearing Presents image which you might remember was part of the Circus release this fall. Believe it or not I actually stamped and paper pieced the image at the same time I made my card for that release. Don't you love it when an image is so versatile? Leigh's sketch gave me the perfect excuse to feature it on a card. I used several different ribbons for the border, most of which was ribbons left over from other projects.

Products: The Cat's Pajamas stamp, Basic Grey dp, Divine Twine and Ribbon, May Arts ribbon, Spellbinders Nestabilities, Copic Markers
Copics: Bear-E50, E51, E53; Ribbon/Bows-R22, R24, R29

All the details for this TCP Tuesday challenge can be found on Alma’s blog. As always, there is potential for fame (Pick of the Litter) and/or fortune (Pick of the Week).

I previewed the next project at the The Cat's Pajamas release party over at Splitcoast Stampers last month but am just now getting around to sharing on the blog.

Gift cards are a big hit at Christmas, especially among teenagers but they can be a bit impersonal. The The Cat's Pajamas Gift Card Envie CutUps is just perfect to help jazz it up. I combined it with a the J*lly H*liday stamp set which contains 4 holiday words all of which have an open space for the "o" that can be replaced with a several holiday images which are also included. I selected stronger colors for a more masculine look and made my actual gift card envelope using the CutUps. I closed it with Evergreen seam binding bow. I also made a pocket card to slip it into. I stamped N*el word from the stamp set onto layered Circus Panels and then filled in the "o" in Noel with a couple of snowflakes from the Snowflake Lace Paper. I added a big red snowflake using the Snowflake CutUps and the For/From (from the Peeking set) were stamped onto banner strips cut with the Easy Rosette CutUps.

My second gift card holder was even easier to make using the Gift Card Envie CutUps and felt. I sewed on two small pieces of velcro for the closure and then added a pretty button. I cut a a felt snowflake using the Snowflake CutUps tied on with Christmas Divine Twine. I again used the For/From (from the Peeking set) stamped onto banner strips cut with the Easy Rosette CutUps.  Easy peasy and a cure for the common gift card!

Products: The Cat's Pajamas stamps and CutUps, Seam Binding ribbon, Divine Twine, Felt, Little Yellow Bicycle dp, Kaisercraft pearls

And since this is an all things TCP post, I thought I would share some secret sister projects. First up is the card featuring the Anywhere Ribbon Slide CutUps to make diagonal strips for the background. The glittery cardstock was very, very thick but it cut quite nicely with my Big Shot although I did run it back and forth several times. I then inserted patterned paper strips rather than ribbon. I used the J*lly H*liday stamp for the sentiment, stamping in gray rather than my usual black and what do you know, there is the big Snowflake again. It's really had a workout this holiday season!

Here are the photos of everything included in the box. It was a fun to buy and create for a stampy friend:

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

On the Twelfth Day of Christmas.....

It's the 12th and final day of my 12 Days of Christmas series.

12 Days of Christmas: My step-granddaughters in North Carolina at age 8 and 10 are right on the cusp of no longer believing in Santa Claus. Twelve days of small packages arriving in the mail will {I hope} help keep Christmas a magical time for just a little longer. It's purely for fun and not really about the gifts.

Today's gift is "Moose Munch", a popcorn and chocolate mixture. I decided to make a popcorn holder for each bag. I found the template via google and printed onto cardstock. I combined the treat with C.C. Designs Reindeer Lights stamp, cutting out with Spellbinders Nestabilities and then coloring with Copics. I used the same set of Copics on both but colored them up just a bit different. I inked the edges and then added Glossy Accents on the lights for a bit of shine. I attached to the containers, adding a nice fluffy bow and a felt snowflake.

Products: C.C. Designs stamp, Authentique and Echo Park dp, Ranger Glossy Accents, Distress ink, Inkssentials Opaque Pen, Spellbinders Nestabilities, Copic Markers
Copics: Reindeer-E41, E42, E44, W2, W5, W7, R20; Reindeer nose/Lights-R22, R24, R27; Lights-B0000, B000, BG10, Y15, Y17, Y35; Shadows-W00, W1

I combined today's project for the All That Scraps Wednesday Challenge to create a treat holder. In order to be eligible to win, your project must include a stamp that is sold in the All That Scraps shop whether it is any of the wonderful in house designs or from the various other stamp companies that ATS carries. Be sure to check out the challenge blog for specific details on how to include your entry. 

I hope you have enjoyed the 12 Days of Christmas series. Thank you for stopping by.

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

On the Eleventh Day of Christmas....

It's the 11th of my 12 Days of Christmas series.

12 Days of Christmas: My step-granddaughters in North Carolina at age 8 and 10 are right on the cusp of no longer believing in Santa Claus. Twelve days of small packages arriving in the mail will {I hope} help keep Christmas a magical time for just a little longer. It's purely for fun and not really about the gifts. 

Today's gift is the very girlie gift of glittery fingernail polish. I kept things very simple on this one. I cut a snowflake with The Cat's Pajamas Snowflake CutUps and then cut the center out of it so I could slide it down the cap portion of the bottle. I trimmed the Authentique piece into a tag shape and then tied it onto the bottle with a pretty white satin bow. I topped each bottle with a button and pearl. Easy!

Here is another view looking straight down on the bottles:

Products: The Cat's Pajamas Snowflake CutUps, Authentique dp, May Arts ribbon, Prima pearl, PTI button

I'm almost done! I'll share the 12th and final gift tomorrow.

Monday, December 19, 2011

On the Tenth Day of Christmas.....

Good morning. It's day 10 of my 12 Days of Christmas series.

12 Days of Christmas: My step-granddaughters in North Carolina at age 8 and 10 are right on the cusp of no longer believing in Santa Claus. Twelve days of small packages arriving in the mail will {I hope} help keep Christmas a magical time for just a little longer. It's purely for fun and not really about the gifts. 

Today's gift is a box of Sugar Babies aka reindeer poop. If you remember I also included  snowman poop (tic tacs) earlier in the 12 Days series so I thought I would give equal time to another Christmas figure. I wanted to do something different this time so I wrapped up each candy box with leftover Christmas wrapping paper with cute reindeer images. Then I made a tag for each bag featering a Hero Arts Big Reindeer image that I stamped, sprinkled with gold embossing powder and then heat set. I allowed the legs and part of the nose to fall outside of the tag and added a red pom pom for the nose and a white one for the tail. After cutting out The Cat's Pajamas Snowflake Lace paper, I cut into two pieces and added to the edge of each tag. I tied the completed tag onto the package with some pretty ribbon and gold metallic thread. 


I'll see you back here tomorrow for Day 11!