Visiting The Great Outdoors

 

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I am going camping this weekend, or maybe I should say “glamping”, because we have a camper, so I wanted to visit “The Great Outdoors” stamp set.  All the images are great, and really evoke the outdoor feeling.

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I hope this card evokes fond memories in you, as it does for me.  My hubby and I will be sitting by a fire this weekend in chairs that look like the one on the card, and I’ll be thinking, “This is the life!”

Besides The Great Outdoors”, I used the sentiment from Beauty of the Season.  I used Blendabilities (Old Olive, Pumpkin Pie, Daffodil Delight, various Skin Tones and the Blender), sponged ink (Sahara Sand, So Saffron), and added linen thread to balance the side.

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The Designer Series Paper in the backdrop is Color Me Autumn, and the card base is Blackberry Bliss.  Whisper White is used for the coloring mat, and I stamped in Memento ink, because I was using the Blendability markers.  The Dicken’s sentiment from “Beauty” is stamped in Mossy Meadow on Olive Green cardstock, and sponged in Pear Pizzaz for grungy effect.  It is die cut from the Apothecary Accents Framelits dies.

The picture below focuses in on the coloring around the objects.  It’s all about sponging and blending.  I just dabbed my Skin Tone Blendabilities here and there around the fire and chair to “ground them, and then filled in with sponging to imitate earth.

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Just for fun, I added an image inside, and used the same techniques from the outside.  Blendabilities are tons of fun, and make anyone look like an artist.

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Thanks for stopping by, and come back Monday for some quick and easy cards.  And be sure to check out the new holiday stamps that just became available at http://www.stampinbon.com (click on Shop).  You can now purchase the various sets I’ve highlighted from the start of my blog.  And from now until Oct. 31, if you host a party of $300, not only will you earn the host benefits to spend on anything you want, you will also earn a free Good Greetings Stamp Set!  Just contact me if you would like to host a party, or visit http://www.stampinbon.com for more information.

 

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Scattered Thanks – from simple to simply sweet.

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Today’s post focuses on keeping it simple, and how you can do that in more ways than one.  I used the Scattered Seasons Stampin’ Up set, and then focused on two colors (well, actually three, but I’ll explain), plus Whisper White.

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The first card is simple, but still pretty, and it is an easy design for a beginner to handle, even with the stamping technique.  The second card just adds a little more detail with the Moonlight Designer Series Paper (DSP) Stack, and the Regals Candy Dots.

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Easy Technique – To get the colored image shown, I inked my stamp in Crushed Curry (The matching color for the DSP is Hello Honey, but I wanted a brighter ink color, and the Curshed Curry blends in nicely-hence my third color). I then gently squeezed together the closed Blackberry Bliss pad, so I would have ink on the lid, when I opened it.  I used a Sponge Dauber to pick up color just for the middle part of the stamp (see picture above).  When I was done, I “huffed” onto my stamp to make sure it was still moist, and then stamped it onto Whisper White cardstock.  

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Dies doing Double – For the first card, I just left the stamped mat slightly smaller than the card base.  I think with this stamp, I should have made it an even smaller mat, but that wasn’t so obvious until I had a picture of it.  For the second card, to get the fancy cut out of the sentiment, I used one of the Window Frames Framelits to cut the edges of my cardstock piece.  You can do this with a lot of the framelits.  Just make sure your cardstock piece is narrow enough to slip through the die on the other side.  This may leave marks on your cardstock, so plan to possibly sponge or cut down your sentiment mat if needed (like I did).  Once I had my two ends cut with the die, I just cut the top and bottom edges off to clean up the mat, based on what looked good to my eye, using my Stampin’ Trimmer.

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Candy is dandy – The card looked fine without the extra embellishments, but I think the Candy Dots just dressed it up,  

Thanks for stopping by and come back Friday for some more stamping fun!

Visit http://www.stampinbon.com to purchase any of the products you have seen here.  And check out this great deal that lasts just until August 28th, below.

Short & Sweet.  Stampin’ often times rolls out great opportunities for you to join Stampin’ Up!  This opportunity is the shortest and sweetest of them all.  Until August 28, you can purchase Stampin’ Up!’s Starter Kit (you get to pick whatever you want) for $99.  In return, you will get $150 of product (again, your choice) AND free shipping AND to be a member of my fun and inspiring group.  Act now so you don’t miss out.   You can sign up at http://www.stampinbon.com.  Click on “Join the Fun”.

Watercolor Winter – Take two

Today I am showing you the other two cards from the Watercolor Winter Simply Created card kit from Stampin’ Up!   The directions for coloring are in Thursday’s post with the other two cards.

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I kept this card fairly similar to the directions.  I just wanted less white space so I moved the word “happy” up.  The kit gives you a full sized gold glitter background tree for every tree in the kit, but you can actually cut them down, and use the leftover glitter paper for other embellishments.  Only the diamond cut outs need the gold behind them.

The cards below are the most different from the directions.  I tried them with two variations on the colors, just to see what I liked better.  The Gold Glimmer paper comes with the kit (shown with the red snowflake card), and I used my own Stampin’ Up! Silver Glimmer Paper (shown with the blue snowflake card) for variation .  The ornaments are from the almost retired Merry Minis Punch Pack, but you could use the current star for a similar effect.

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The “strings are just drawn on with the Stampin’ Write Smokey Slate marker, and I used Smokey Slate Ink Refills to paint on the stripes, as well.  The stripes are suggested in the kit, but if I were to do it again, I think I would stamp a very light background, as I had a lot of difficulty painting nice stripes, even using the Stripes Mask.  It worked better when I switched to a sponge.

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I tried leaving the vellum snowflake white, as indicated in the kit, but it disappeared into the white stripes, so I colored it.  You can colorwash or sponge the vellum.

These are just some ways you can personalize the kit, but you can make it exactly as it comes and enjoy it just as much.

Visit http://www.stampinbon.com to purchase any of the products you have seen here.  And check out a great deal that lasts just one week, below.

Short & Sweet.  Stampin’ often times rolls out great opportunities for you to join Stampin’ Up!  This opportunity is the shortest and sweetest of them all.  Until August 28, you can purchase Stampin’ Up!’s Starter Kit (you get to pick whatever you want) for $99.  In return, you will get $150 of product (again, your choice) AND free shipping AND to be a member of my fun and inspiring group.  Act now so you don’t miss out.   You can sign up at http://www.stampinbon.com.  Click on “Join the Fun”.

 

Coffee and a card – PPA216 Sketch Challenge: Perfect Blend

Today’s card was made for the Pals Paper Arts Sketch Challenge.  I knew immediately both the stamp set and Specialty Designer Paper I would use.  I had been thinking about matching a card to the “A Little Sumthin’ Sumthin” Simply Created kit, and the sketch just made it all come together for me.  So here’s the card.P1010853

And here is the sketch that inspired the card.

Here is the color inspiration.  This is the pillow box from the “A Little Sumthin’ sumthin'” kit.  Just add a little goodie and you are set.  I put one Via coffee and one Merci chocolate (from Storck) in the box.  You can fit two of each, if you are feeling generous.

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Building blocks – I knew I would be using the Flashback DSP, so the other blocks of color just followed from the color scheme.  The card uses Basic Black, Real Red, Crushed Curry, and Pool Party cardstock.

Coloring fun – I got to play with my Stampin’ Blendabilities with this card.  I used the Light and Medium Daffodil Delight and Light and Medium Cherry Cobbler markers to color the coffee cup.  The colors are not the same name as the cardstocks, but because the Blendabilities come in three different shades, the lighter shades matched just fine. For the sentiment on the pillow box, I stamped the ink in Real Red, stamped it off on paper, and then stamped it on the bubble die cut.  I wanted the red to be a tad lighter, to blend with the colors better.

Fiber is good for you – Ok, just being silly, but the card looked a little lacking without anything on the side, so I added Black Baker’s Twine for some texture.

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This is the front and back of the coffee and card packaged together in a Gusseted Cellophane bag.  I used Silver 1/8:” Ribbon and Real Red 1/4″ Cotton Ribbon to close the bag and make it festive.  Now you have a nice and easy gift ready to go.  If you need a more substantial gift, just throw in a gift card, and are covered!

Thanks for stopping by, and come back Monday to see my second two cards from the Watercolor Winter card kit.

Visit http://www.stampinbon.com to purchase any of the products you have seen here.

Short & Sweet.  Stampin’ often times rolls out great opportunities for you to join Stampin’ Up!  This opportunity is the shortest and sweetest of them all.  Until August 28, you can purchase Stampin’ Up!’s Starter Kit (you get to pick whatever you want) for $99.  In return, you will get $150 of product (again, your choice) AND free shipping AND to be a member of my fun and inspiring group.  Act now so you don’t miss out.  Visit http://www.stampinbon.com and click on Join the Fun to sign up.

Watercolor Winter – For the Artist in You!

Stampin’ Up! has a beautiful Christmas/winter holiday card kit in their upcoming Holiday Catalog (to be released August 28th) called Watercolor Winter.  This kit is meant for the crafter who prefers to do more creating with their own style, rather than stamping and assembling pieces together.  I’ll show you two cards today, and show you the other two on Monday.  You can make the kit exactly as shown in the instructions.  I just want to show you how you can also change them up.

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The kit contains everything except the inks, adhesive, and the coordinating stamp set.  You can purchase the Watercolor Winter Too stamp set separately, or use a set you already own.  I recommend that you use Stampin’ Ink Refills as well as stamp pads, for this kit.  I did not completely follow the card layouts by choice.  As I mentioned, this kit is about making the cards your way.  The sled card above is the closest to matching Stampin’ Up!’s design.

Coloring – This kit really focuses on coloring.  The die cut pieces are all white, and you can make them any color you prefer, but specific colors are suggested, To color the pieces, leave them attached in the sheets they are in, rather than punching them out.  After they are colored and dry, gently punch them out.  For the most part, I followed the color layouts in the instructions, except I chose to color most of the vellum pieces, because I thought they stood out better that way. I also chose to use Real Red instead of Cherry Cobbler.  It’s just a matter of preference.

  • Color Wash – Start with three drops of Stampin’ Ink Refill of your chosen color in a small container, like a ramekin, and add 70% or 90% rubbing alcohol or water.  Rubbing alcohol dries much faster, but water works fine.  If the color is not dark enough, carefully add a drop or two at a time, to get the color you want.   Use the included brush to paint colors onto your die cuts.  I added extra layers of color to the top of my letters, so I would have a color variation.  For the sled, I tried to make some areas darker than others, just to make it more interesting.

If you don’t have ink refills, then you will need to press your closed stamp pad together, so that ink gets on the inside of the lid.  Then open the case, and use a wet paint brush or Aqua Painter to get the color off the lid.  Do not use rubbing alcohol when using this method.

  • Sponge Dauber – press your Sponge Dauber directly on your stamp pad, and then dab or swirl color onto your die cuts.  This will give you a more intense color.
  • Stamping Sponge – press your sponge directly into the ink pad and then pounce your sponge onto the die cut.  This will give you less intense color.

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I added color wash to the velum holly leaves on this Merry card, and used a Stamping Sponge to set off the outside of the “Christmas” sentiment.  I colored directly on the white sequins in the kit with my dark Old Olive Stampin’ Blendabilities marker.  The Stampin’ Blendabilities markers are alcohol markers and can color on buttons, ribbon, sequins, and lots of other items, besides making great color on stamped images.  I used some of the extra gold glitter paper in the kit to add three gold berries to the holly leaves and to provide a mat for the Christmas sentiment banner.

Thanks for stopping by, and come back tomorrow to see my entry for the Pal Paper Arts Sketch Challenge.  I will post the other two cards from the Watercolor Winter kit on Monday.

Visit http://www.stampinbon.com to purchase any of the products you have seen here.  And check out a great deal that lasts just one week, below.

Short & Sweet.  Stampin’ often times rolls out great opportunities for you to join Stampin’ Up!  This opportunity is the shortest and sweetest of them all.  Until August 28, you can purchase Stampin’ Up!’s Starter Kit (you get to pick whatever you want) for $99.  In return, you will get $150 of product (again, your choice) AND free shipping AND to be a member of my fun and inspiring group.  Act now so you don’t miss out.  https://ida.stampinup.com/en/agreement

 

But I don’t have what I need! – Improvise and change things up!

Everyone who knows me knows that I appreciate the value of having the right tool for the job.  In Crafting, that doesn’t apply just to dies, punches, and scissors.  To me, it means the right cardstock, ink, applicators, ribbon, adhesive, and you name it.  When you travel, even when you think you brought what you need, you always forget something.  

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I planned to make this card on my trip so a friend could have fun making it with me.  I brought the Lullaby Designer Series Paper (DSP), the Coastal Cabana and Hello Honey ink pads, the Something for Baby and Sassy Salutations stamp sets, and the Baby’s First Framelits.  I was borrowing the Big Shot, so I was set, right?  As usual, the design I had in my head and what I brought didn’t match up.  I forgot the Coastal Cabana cardstock, and, of all things, a sponge.  Every card maker knows you could need a sponge (or Sponge Dauber) at any time.  After all, that’s my “fix-it” trick when I accidentally drop a stamp or smush an inky finger on my card.  I just tap my piece of sponge on my ink pad and go over the area, like it was intended to be there.  I’ve also covered my mistakes with another stamp design, button, or candy dot.  Yes, now you know some of the many ways crafters have learned to add embellishments to cards.

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The picture above is the Stamping Sponge.  I usually cut it into six pieces, but I will cut eight pieces if I need a more precise sponging applicator.  I just wash my sponges when I’m done (make sure to clean up wayward ink splatters from around the sink), and it doesn’t matter if they are stained, as long as they are clean.

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Make Do – Well, as you can see from this picture, I had to set off my sentiment with some ink, or it just basically sank into the background of the card.  I looked through what I had available in our condo.  I could use a dirty kitchen sponge (nope), a wash cloth that was too thick and might stain (nope again), or try a paper towel.  I knew the paper towel needed to be damp, or it would just absorb the ink.  With my ink pad closed, I gently squeezed the top of the pad into the bottom, so when I opened it, there would be ink on the inside of the lid.  I kept picking up that ink with the damp paper towel, and gently brushed the towel against the edges of the paper.  It is by no means a good substitute, but it worked well enough to make the sentiment stand out.  If you ever have to try this, do not touch your pad with a wet paper towel, because it could leave paper fibers, and even if it didn’t, paper fibers are very rough and could damage the pad.  

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Improvise – I mentioned I forgot the Coastal Cabana cardstock earlier, and my other colors of cardstock didn’t looked right, so I made my own.  I took a Stampin’ Up! acrylic block, made sure it was very clean, and then inked it directly on my Coastal Cabana ink pad.  I then “stamped” the block onto Whisper White and got a definite color effect that worked as a back ground.  It wasn’t exactly the look I had wanted, but I think in this instance, it was a good substitute.  

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Have Fun – The gift tag was a separate piece to go with the card, and I wanted to make it stand out on it’s own – literally.  Tags don’t have to be one dimensional.  I took a long 2″ wide piece of Lullaby DSP and used the Scalloped Tag Topper punch on each end, made some folds in the middle to hold a strip of cardstock, and then attached my stamped and die cut images to the inserted cardstock strip.   I tied it closed with a bow made from the Coastal Cabana Thick Baker’s Twine.

Thanks for stopping by and sharing in my imperfections and improv!  Tomorrow I’ll share pictures and thoughts on the Watercolor Winter Simply Created card kit from the Stampin’ Up! holiday catalog.

Visit http://www.stampinbon.com to purchase any of the products you have seen here.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Paper Pumpkin – A fresh start!

Hi folks,

This didn’t post automatically, so I’m sorry it is late.  I just checked it now.

Today’s post is about a cute and simple card made using this month’s Paper Pumpkin subscription kit from Stampin’ Up!  If you previously subscribed, or haven’t tried it yet, it’s time, because Stampin’ Up has made a fresh start.  Stampin’ Up! has improved the value of the kits substantially, and took note of customer requests for ink and project variety.  If you have questions, contact me, and I can go into detail about the kits.  New subscribers (based on email address) can get the first two kits for $10 each (see bottom of post).

Like most demonstrators, I get the kit and then figure out other things I can do with it, besides the neat projects that are included.  Believe me, if you go on Pinterest, you will see a ton of samples of how we like to change things up.  I’m just going to show you one example of changing up the mini card in the kit two ways.  You can find many postings of the large cards included in the kit already, and they are really cool.  Here is my first sample of taking one of the four small cards (left card on picture below), and changing it up to become an A2 card (5.5” X 4.25”).  A2 is the size many crafters choose, and you can make two A2 bases out of a standard 8.5” X 11” piece of cardstock.

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I made the small card exactly as instructed in the kit, just to show the kit design. For the large card, I cut one of the mini cards in half (I can use both parts to replicate this card), cut a piece of Strawberry Slush paper with the Oval Accent die, and cut two pieces of Hello Honey cardstock with the flag shape from the Hearts a Flutter Framelits.  I embossed the flag shapes with the Decorative Dots embossing folder to emulate the dots that are stamped. It doesn’t matter that the flags are two pieces instead of a long piece because they middle is hidden behind the heart mat.  For fun, I stamped the back of a Whisper White envelope with dots, to match the card.

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Instead of stamping dots on the small card piece for the larger card, I stamped them on the larger white base, and just used 4 sequins (included in the kit and meant for the large cards I’m showing tomorrow) to accent the small white heart mat. I made this card for a girlfriend, so, I changed the ink from Hello Honey (included in the kit) to Daffodil Delight, because it is brighter, and seems more like her.

For the gender neutral or masculine version, I used Mellow Moss ink, and flipped the precut sentiment banner over, so it would be plain Whisper White.  I must admit, everything I tried with the star for this one seemed like a great card for a service man or woman, rather than just a good all around neutral or masculine card, but I’m posting a picture anyway, just to give you some inspiration.

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The polaroid frame and arrow are from the On Film Framelits set.  I free-hand cut an arrow shape out of Mossy Meadow to back the stamped arrow,  Both sentiment pieces are sponged with Mossy Meadow,

Value – In this month’s set alone, I could have just made four large cards and four small cards, and had leftover pieces to do more later, but like most of us, I like to get as much bang for my buck as possible.  By cutting the card bases in half, I can get 8 of each card made, as long as I use another base (Whisper White or other coordinating color) for any of the cards, and mat the colorful cardstock on top.  I have a set of useful stamps and ink spot left over to continue my creativity whenever I want.

No Pressure – The kits come with instructions, they are easy to put together, and there is a ton of inspiration/Pinspiration on the internet, to give you more ideas, if you want to mix things up.  You can sign up monthly and suspend or cancel any time.

Variety – The kits are always different, and some are intended to make gifts, some home-decor, some gift packaging, and many make my favorite, cards.  Everything you need, except scissors and adhesive, are included, including cool and unique embellishments you can’t even purchase through Stampin’ Up!  Paper Pumpkin does include specialty adhesives, like glue dots and Dimensionals, when those are needed.

 

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Thanks for stopping by, and come back tomorrow to see how you can make a nice card even when you don’t have everything you need with you.  The key is, Improvise!

Visit http://www.stampinbon.com to purchase any of the products you have seen here, and go to:

https://mypaperpumpkin.com?demoid=2143241 to purchase a Paper Pumpkin subscription through me.

Offer Details: Use the code HALFOFF2 to join Paper Pumpkin before September 10, 2014, and get 50% off the first two months! After that, keep the creativity coming for only $19.95 + tax per month (shipping included).

 

Festival of Trees – Finally, it’s Christmas!

Today’s post features the Festival of Trees stamp set and punch used for Christmas.  To show extra uses for yesterday’s  Age Awareness stamp set, I used the flourish on the inside of the card.  This card was actually very easy to make, and I can see this being one of the designs I use for my Christmas card recipients.  I never make just one style, because I get bored.  It would be very easy to make 20 cards in this design in an hour.   Cut all your pieces, stamp all 20 of each item, and then put them together, assembly line style.

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Keep it Simple – I knew right away I wanted to use the green flourish page of the All is Calm Designer Series Paper (DSP).  It’s simple but stylish, and Stampin’ Up! makes it easy to come up with color combinations that work with your chosen DSP.  The coordinating colors are listed right on the package.  I took my cues from the All is Calm color scheme (I used Pear Pizzaz, Soft Sky, and Lost Lagoon), and then added Basic Black.  I happened to have a piece I had cut previously with the Top Note die, waiting for a home.  It did not work on a previous card, but looks great on this one.  The outside sentiment is cut with the wavy die from Bitty Banners Framelits.

Jazz it up – I added a bit of bling to the four corners of the DSP mat with the largest Rhinestones, and rounded the corners with the Project Life Corner Rounder.  Each tree got a little different treatment.

  • Ornament Tree – While the single stamped ornament tree is very cute as is, I liked how the soft sky ornaments (the same dots stamp I used in yesterday’s card) changed the look , and the smallest Rhinestones here and there helped add a little sparkle.
  • Flourish Tree – I stamped with Silver Encore ink, and then embossed in Silver Stampin’ Emboss Powder.  I could have used VersaMark ink as well, but using the silver under silver helps to ensure my image is more complete, just in case my embossing job isn’t perfect (what, me not perfect?  Perish the thought).
  • Plain Tree – For the third tree, I stamped the image in Pear Pizzaz, and waited just a bit to make sure it was dry before using the same Silver Encore pad for the tinsel image. But this time, I used Heat & Stick powder instead of silver embossing powder, so I could use the silver Stampin’ Glitter.  I just think tinsel should be super sparkly, and the glitter is shinier than the embossing powder.

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A little wonky – To create interest, I made my tree layout a little wonky.  The trees are at varying heights (top to bottom) and I adhered one tree flat against the black, one uses a single Dimensional, and the middle one uses stacked Dimensionals.  My middle tree actually looks wonky, because I adhered it on a little crooked, but we’re pretending you don’t see that.

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Thanks for stopping by, and come back tomorrow to see what Paper Pumpkin is up to these days (it’s all great!).

Visit http://www.stampinbon.com to purchase any of the products you have seen here.

Festival of Trees – It’s your birthday!

Today’s post shows the Festival of Trees stamp set used for a birthday card.  I used the 2014 – 2016 In colors again, to show how useful they are.  Because I also used the Age Awareness stamp set on this card, it really is only about birthday, but you could use another stamp set in the same way, and have it be a congratulatory card.  The pennants just make it festive.  I used the dots that are meant to be ornaments on the tree stamp, and they make for a very playful pennant design.  See my instructions from yesterday about using the punch on the stamped image, and cutting off the “tree trunk”.   To get the curved corners on the card and mat, I used the Project Life corner rounder.  I think that rounded style just looked better with the curves in the sentiment.

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Sometimes fussy is ok – If I can get a punch or die to do my work, I’m all over that.  Age Awareness does not have a die, and I wanted my sentiment to stand out, so I bit the bullet and fussy cut carefully around the words.  Fussy cutting is a term crafters use for cutting something specific out of paper or fabric, and it could be a simple as a square, or as ornate as a delicate flower.   Whether you cut exactly on the lines, or leave a white(or other color) “reveal” depends on the effect you want, and it will vary, even if you are using the same image.

Make it pop – hopefully you can tell from the side view that I used stacked Dimensionals on the “happy” stamped image.  I wanted varied heights for a playful effect.  Two pennants are adhered directly to the card, two pennants and the “birthday” use a single layer of Dimensionals, and the “happy” uses a double stack of Dimensionals.  Just place your Dimensional on your piece, remove the sticker cover layer, and place another dimensional directly on top.

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It’s a wrap – After I punched out the pennants, I used my Simply Scored tool to score a line ¼ inch from the wide end.  I then cut an angled piece of each side of the ¼ inch scored part, so that when I wrapped the pennant around the white Baker’s Twine, there would not be little points sticking out the side.  I needed my pennants shorter, so they would not overwhelm the sentiment, and I could have just cut ¼ inch off, but I prefer the look of the wrap.

Thanks for stopping by, and come back tomorrow to see the Christmas version of Festival of Trees.

Visit http://www.stampinbon.com to purchase any of the products you have seen here.

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Yes, here it is again.   I could not decide if I liked this card better against the white or black background, so you get to see it twice.  🙂

 

 

Festival of Trees – Beyond the Season

Today’s post shows the Festival of Trees stamp set used for a general purpose card.  I used the 2014 – 2016 In colors for today and tomorrow’s post (haven’t decided on the actual Christmas representation yet), because the colors are awesome, and when you buy them as an ink and cardstock set, you get a bargain.  If you read my posts regularly, you will see I try to show ways to use your purchases for a variety of events or activities, and I hope to share the value of a well-planned purchase.  Yes, I took Dave Ramsey’s financial course, and yes, it struck a chord.  But honestly, growing up with meager means, I never was one for waste.  Don’t repeat that in my husband’s presence.  He doesn’t understand the value “I have every color they make”.

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This card is all about wonderful  “you”.  I think it is apparent that this card could be for a graduation, a promotion, a job well-done,  a sports celebration, a pick-me-up, etc.  I should also say birthday, butI cover that tomorrow, with a slightly different design and sentiment.  What I don’t think is apparent, is that the stamp set used for the design is a Christmas set (Festival of Trees punch and stamp set).  And that’s the point.  I stamped three of the designs in the set, punched them with the matching punch, and then cut off the bottom portion, and they definitely look like pennants, and not trees.

Choose your target/Register your design – When you cut out designs with a punch, it is very easy to choose what you want to punch.   If you don’t know already, when you punch a stamped image, you should flip your punch over so you can see the blades, then place the image face up in the bottom of the punch, so you can see how you position the image within the blades.  You don’t push down until the image is where it looks best.  This is called registering the image, for future reference.

When I punched these particular designs, I positioned the punch so the back end of the punch was at the back end of the design I had stamped.  I knew I would be cutting off the “tree trunk”, so I wanted to make sure as much graphic part of the stamped image show, as possible.

Dress it up – I dispensed Crystal Effects on Mossy Meadow colored card stock in long narrow strips, and when it dried, I punched ¼ inch circles to make my own “ Candy Dots”.  Stampin’ Up! makes a great candy dot in a smaller size, but not in the “In Colors”, so having their ¼ punch and Crystal Effects means that any cardstock I have can turn into Candy Dots.

Simple Repetition – To keep the card from being too busy, I made the stripes of color mat match the pennant ink color.  I tried the pennants on larger mats, and spaced apart mats, but the simple and clean design just seemed better.  I think there’s enough going on with the graphic pennants.  But I always encourage my crafters to try things for themselves.