October 31, 2012

Hurricane Sandy and a card

Hello friends.

I'm feeling a little somber today due to the recent devastation here on the East Coast from Hurricane Sandy.  We were very fortunate not to have lost power or sustained any damage, but my thoughts are with those across the eastern U.S. who face a long period of recovery and rebuilding.

I'm squeaking in a card on this last day of Breast Cancer Awareness month, with a sentiment that seems appropriate for current events, as well.  You may have spied this card on the CAS-ual Fridays Stamps blog on Monday along with two other beauties from fellow Girl Fridays.

I used the simple ribbon image and a sentiment from Calm & Gentle for this card, adding a border of Echo Park striped paper, some stitching, and a single pink gem.

Cardstock:  WPlus9 Design Studio (White)
Patterned paper:  Echo Park (Dots & Stripes Soda Fountain)
Stamps:  CAS-ual Fridays Stamps (Calm and Gentle)
Ink:  Stampin' Up! (Melon Mambo)
Tool:  corner rounder
Accessories:  rhinestone, thread

Take a moment to count your blessings today, my friends.  And many thanks to you for stopping by to visit.  :)

October 26, 2012

CFC76-Kraft on!

Hello there!  It's an exciting night!  The time has finally come when you can get your hands on the new CAS-ual Fridays Stamps!

Want another chance to win the entire release?  Play along with us this week at the CAS-ual Fridays challenge blog!  This week we're using kraft in our clean and simple designs.

It's a bittersweet week for the Girl Fridays, as we're saying farewell to four of our fellow designers.  Karolyn, Julie, Stephanie, and Jenny have lots of exciting things in their future, and we wish them well as they go forward!  It has been an honor to design with all of you, ladies!

For my card this week I used stamps from Woot Woot (isn't that a fun name?).  I stamped the border image on a kraft card base and added black pearls.  Then I stamped two of the large sentiments onto a strip of white cardstock and popped it up with foam tape.

Cardstock:  Papertrey Ink (Kraft), WPlus9 Design Studio (White)
Stamps:  CAS-ual Fridays Stamps (Woot Woot)
Ink:  Stampin' Up! (Real Red), Memento (Tuxedo Black)
Accessories:  Michaels (pearls)

I hope you'll join us this week, and be sure to stop by the CAS-ual Fridays challenge blog to wish Karolyn, Julie, Stephanie, and Jenny the best of luck in their future endeavors!

Thanks for visiting!

October 25, 2012

CASE Study #114

Welcome back, CASE Study fans!  Ready for another inspiring card from our Muse, Julia Stainton?

By Julia Stainton
I just love the vibrant green felt and oodles of texture on this card.  I used a bold flower stamp from CAS-ual Fridays Stamps new set, Truth Is, stamping it several times onto Rustic Cream cardstock.  I paper pieced the petals with Pear Pizzazz designer paper.

To add some texture and a natural element to my card, I layered a strip of burlap ribbon under a kraft banner.  I also wanted to include some pops of turquoise, as that is one feature of Julia's card that really stood out to me.

Cardstock:  Stampin' Up! (Pear Pizzazz), Papertrey Ink (Kraft, Rustic Cream)
Patterned paper:  Stampin' Up! (Pear Pizzazz designer paper)
Stamps:  CAS-ual Fridays Stamps (Truth Is, Woot Woot)
Ink:  Stampin' Up! (Chocolate Chip), Copic marker
Tools:  Papertrey Ink (banner die), corner rounder
Accessories:  burlap ribbon, button, rhinestones, DMC floss

On a side note, I know I've mentioned this before but does anyone have advice on linking images from Photobucket to Blogger?  These particular photos look wonderfully vibrant in my Photobucket album, but once I link them to my blog post they are less bright and sort of washed out.  I must have spent an hour trying to fix these, but finally gave up out of frustration!

Thanks for stopping by, friends!  Have a great day!

October 23, 2012

CAS-ual Fridays Stamps sneak peek: Calm & Gentle

Welcome back for a special post to preview one of the fabulous new stamp sets being released in just a few days by CAS-ual Fridays Stamps!  Have you been following along with the sneak peeks?  It isn't too late to comment over on the store blog for a chance to win one of the new sets.  You can also play along at the CAS-ual Fridays challenge blog this week for a chance to win the entire release!

I'm delighted to share a peek with you from today's featured set:  Calm & Gentle.  I used two of the pretty sentiments from the set to make a simple card of encouragement, repeating the phrase "be brave" in Pool Party ink and highlighting the phrase "You've got this" by stamping it in dark pink.

I can tell you that these stamps are a dream to work with:  the highest quality photopolymer, and made in the USA.  There are five sets being released on Friday, and I am smitten with each and every one.  :)

Cardstock:  Stampin' Up! (Pool Party)
Stamps:  CAS-ual Fridays Stamps (Calm and Gentle)
Ink:  Stampin' Up! (Pool Party, Primrose Petals), Copic marker
Other:  Michaels (rhinestones)

The fun continues on the CAS-ual Fridays Stamps blog, with more peeks from the Girl Fridays.  Winners will also be announced there on Thursday, so be sure to become a "CAS-ual Friend" so you won't miss a thing!

Thanks for visiting, friends!  I hope you're having a great week!

October 21, 2012

A peek into my craft space...

 Hi folks!

As promised, I have a few photos of my craft space to share with you.  As you may remember, we recently had new windows installed, which prompted us to finally give this room a face lift.  I'm absolutely love how it turned out.  :)

You can see the "before" photo above on the left, showing you the hideously wallpapered walls, heavy drapes to cover the drafty, single-pane windows, and the dark wood trim.  Not exactly a place to inspire creativity.

After a few coats of pretty blue paint on the walls, white for the trim, and new energy-efficient windows, the room is finally the bright and inviting space I envisioned.

My favorite piece in this room is the long table that my hubby and I built to fit the space.  There's plenty of room for the kids to craft on one end while I stamp away at the other.  The table "legs" are basic bookshelves that hold the kids' craft supplies and other odds and ends.

The table top was made from two large sheets of heavy MDF.  I covered the edges with a 3/8" strip of decorative trim and added a wider piece of trim below.  After painting it white, I added 3 coats of polycrylic to give it a smooth, durable finish.

I finally gave my Silhouette Cameo a permanent home on my craft table so that I'll remember to use it.  :)  My sewing machine and basic trimmer are always within reach of my work space.  I have punches in the photo boxes, and the brown baskets hold alphabet stickers and miscellaneous embellishments.

Above the table is an 8-cube Expedit shelving unit from Ikea.  We decided to mount it on the wall, but this unit weighs a ton so we used heavy duty brackets to hold it as well as drywall screws at the top to stabilize it.

The Expedit unit holds scrapbooks, some of my tools, and boxes full of the kids' photos, drawings and school projects.

In the corner is an inexpensive cabinet unit from Michaels.  It's actually three separate pieces stacked together.  The bottom cabinet holds most of my clear stamps in their original packaging, my dies and embossing folders, and a small fabric stash.  

The divided compartments at the top hold most of my tools, from adhesive to Copics to cutting tools and acrylic blocks.  On top of the unit are 4 CD boxes that hold my Papertrey stamp sets.  It bugs me that they don't match, so someday I'll probably have to fix that.  LOL!

Directly across from the cabinet is a wall-mounted unit from Michaels that holds my ink pads and the bulk of my ribbon.  I don't like the dowel rods that are intended for holding ribbon, as I prefer to bring the whole roll to my desk, so that space holds a few punches, washi tape, and wood stamps.

An old coffee table serves as a space to hold most of my cardstock, some patterned paper, and my Big Shot.  My scoring board sits on top.  Under the table are baskets full of magazines that I turn to for inspiration.

The best part of this room now is all of the wonderful, natural light coming in the 6 windows.  It's a much more inviting space, and now my hubby spends a lot more time working at the table with me, which is a nice bonus.  :)

If you have any questions, I'll be happy to answer them!  I hope you enjoyed this peek into my space!

Thanks for stopping by!

October 19, 2012

CFC75--Over the Edge!

It's here!  It's finally here!  CAS-ual Fridays is revealing a HUGE secret tonight, and there's a hint or two on my card for this week's challenge.  :)  You'll have to visit the CAS-ual Fridays challenge blog to meet our new "little sister" and get all the details on the week-long party, prizes, and special guests!

Our theme this week is "Over the Edge":  use an element that extends beyond the card base on your clean and simple design.

We have a very special sponsor this week, too, so be sure to visit CAS-ual Fridays to check it out!

Cardstock:  WPlus9 Design Studio (White)
Ink:  Stampin' Up! (Pretty in Pink, Real Red, Chocolate Chip)

Thanks so much for stopping by to share in the excitement!  Have a fabulous start to your weekend!

October 18, 2012

CASE Study #113

Hi there!  I know I promised you craft room photos, but we had visitors staying with us and time got away from me.  :)  I'll post them soon.

Today I'm sharing a card for a new challenge at CASE Study, featuring this delightful card by Julia Stainton:

By Julia Stainton

I saw the white circle and immediately reached for my circle dies to create a "window" on my card front.  I used PTI's Through the Trees and a sentiment from Pretty Peonies.  The cloud die cut needed a little something, so glittered the edges.

The blue cardstock is one of WPlus9's new colors called Lake House.  I love this serene shade of blue and think it pairs beautifully with chocolate brown.

Cardstock:  WPlus9 Design Studio (Lake House, White)
Stamps:  Papertrey Ink (Through the Trees, Pretty Peonies)
Ink:  Stampin' Up! (Chocolate Chip, Real Red)
Tools:  Spellbinders (circle die), Papertrey Ink (cloud die, Linen & Canvas impression plate)
Other:  Jo-Ann (glitter)

Need more inspiration?  Stop by the CASE Study blog to see what the rest of the Designers have created this week, then show us your take on the challenge!

Thanks for stopping by, friends!

October 12, 2012

CAS-ual Fridays #74--Put your heart into it!

Welcome back, friends!  We're not quite ready to share our big secret at CAS-ual Fridays, but we do have a new challenge for you today!

This week we're asking you to put your heart into it:  show us your clean and simple design incorporating a heart.  Easy peasy!

Even more incentive to play along:  there's a prize up for grabs from I Heart Papers!

I wanted to play with the heart stamps from WPlus9's Heartfelt Mix, and I discovered that they make a fun and funky flower.  :)  The dotted line stamp made a perfect stem, and I used the gingham heart for the leaves.  A button center, a simple sentiment, and some subtle texture on the white panel, and that's it!

Cardstock:  Stampin' Up! (Early Espresso), WPlus9 Design Studio (White)
Stamps:  WPlus9 Design Studio (Heartfelt Mix)
Ink:  Stampin' Up! (Regal Rose, Lucky Limeade, Chocolate Chip)
Tool:  Papertrey Ink (Linen & Canvas impression plate)
Other:  button, embroidery floss

Go ahead, pull out all of those hearts you have in your stash and put them to work!  No need to wait for Valentine's Day to put a little love into your creations.  :)

I hope to get my craft room photos uploaded and posted over the weekend, since several of you have asked.  Stay tuned!

Thanks for stopping by today!

October 11, 2012

CASE Study #112

Hello, friends!  We're almost to the weekend.  :)

It's time for another CASE Study challenge with our Muse, Julia Stainton.  Check out this beauty:

By Julia Stainton
I decided to use of some of the beautiful paper scraps I have leftover from a previous month's 12 Kits of Christmas.  I layered strips at the bottom of the card like Julia did in her design.  Instead of a large flower, I die cut a snowflake and doily and layered them with a button center and some twine.  I split the sentiment onto two double ended banners and tucked them under the doily.

Cardstock:  Stampin' Up! (Riding Hood Red), Papertrey Ink (Vintage Cream)
Patterned papers:  Stampin' Up! (Holly Berry Bouquet), A Muse Studio (Twas the Night Before Christmas)
Stamps:  Papertrey Ink (Wreath for all Seasons)
Ink:  Stampin' Up! (Chocolate Chip)
Tools:  Papertrey Ink (doily die, banner dies), Spellbinders (snowflake die)
Accessories:  button, baker's twine, thread

Be sure to stop by to see the rest of the creations by the Design Team, then see where the inspiration takes you!

Thanks for stopping by!  See you back here soon!

October 10, 2012

Big Announcement and Prize Alert!

Did you see this?  CAS-ual Fridays is keeping a huge secret, and while I can't let you in on it just yet, you can join in on the excitement by hopping over to the CAS-ual Fridays blog for a chance to win a spectacular prize!

Be sure to tune in on October 19 for the big announcement and to see if you've won!

Later, gators!

October 9, 2012

Cloud9 October Blog Hop

Happy Tuesday, friends!  It's time for the Cloud9 Blog Hop!

Here is the inspiration photo for this month's hop.  You can link up your creation at the Cloud9 Blog anytime before 10 AM EST on October 12 for a chance to win a gift certificate to WPlus9 Design Studio or a spot as a Guest Designer for next month's hop!

I actually dusted off my Silhouette Cameo to cut a door for my card, inking the edges a bit and adding a bronze brad for a doorknob.

I used four different WPlus9 stamp sets:  the pumpkins and leaf from Season of Thanks, the bird from Woodgrain Silhouettes Additions, the "Halloween" from A Pocketful: Halloween, and the "happy" from A Pocketful.

I wanted to decorate my pumpkins like the ones in the inspiration photo, so I "kissed" the inked stamps with polka dots and chevrons to add a pattern to each.

Cardstock:  Papertrey Ink (Kraft), WPlus9 Design Studio (White)
Stamps:  WPlus9 Design Studio (Season of Thanks, Woodgrain Silhouettes Additions, A Pocketful:  Halloween, A Pocketful), Lawn Fawn (Chevron Backdrops), Papertrey Ink (Background Basics:  Polka Dots)
Ink:  Stampin' Up! (Tangerine Tango, Peach Parfait), Memento (Tuxedo Black), Papertrey Ink (Chamomile Tea Dye)
Tools:  Silhouette Online Store (Card Christmas Door cut file)
Other:  ribbon, brad

I hope you'll join us this month and link up your creation for a chance to win!  Stop by the Cloud9 Blog for more inspiration from the rest of the team and to view the gallery.

October 8, 2012

Holiday Cards & More 2012 & Cloud9 Blog Hop Tomorrow

Hi folks!  Just popping in today to share a card of mine that was published in Paper Crafts' special issue, Holiday Cards & More Volume 7.  This is such a gorgeous issue full of inspiration, and I feel incredibly fortunate to have had two cards picked up for it.

I thought this would also be a great opportunity to remind you about tomorrow's Cloud9 Blog Hop!  You can start linking up your creations at 10 AM EST, and you'll have until 10 AM on October 12 to enter for a chance to be our guest designer next month.  

Here's the photo we're using as inspiration this month:

Check out the Cloud9 Challenge Blog for more info, and stop by tomorrow to see what the design team has created to help you get the ideas flowing.  :)

Have a great start to your week, and thanks for stopping by!

October 5, 2012

CAS-ual Fridays #73--For the Girls

Hello again!  It's the end of another week and the beginning of a new month, which means we're on the hunt for our next Guest Designer at CAS-ual Fridays.  Will it be you?

Our challenge this week is in honor of the start of National Breast Cancer Awareness month, so we're calling it For the Girls!  Create a project with a clean and simple design that honors the women in your life, and link it up for your chance at a gift certificate from Simon Says Stamp and a Guest Designer spot.

I couldn't help but use pink and the word "hope" on my card, in support of all of the women fighting a diagnosis of breast cancer.  I stamped the outline letters vertically, then colored them with Copics.  I masked the letters before stamping the large image from Waltzingmouse's Roses in Bloom (stamped off once to yield a lighter impression).

Cardstock:  WPlus9 Design Studio (White)
Patterned paper:  Echo Park (Dots & Stripes Homefront collection)
Stamps:  Waltzingmouse Stamps (Roses in Bloom), Papertrey Ink (Outline Alphabet)
Ink:  Memento (Tuxedo Black), Copic markers

The rest of the DT has come up with some amazing inspiration to get you started, so hop over and check out their creations!

Thanks for visiting again today!  See you back here soon.

October 4, 2012

CASE Study #111

Hello, friends.  I hope your week is going well!

Another month has come and gone (yikes!), which means a new Muse is ready to take the stage at CASE Study.  Hold on to your hats, folks, because this month we have the one and only Julia Stainton of Belle Papier!  Julia's creations are always gorgeous, so be sure to stop by her blog for an extra large dose of inspiration.  :)

Here is the card we're working with this week:

By Julia Stainton
The first thing that drew my eye on Julia's card was the circular shape of the clock and the way the image is repeated behind the sentiment.  I also kept the square card shape and sentiment banner in my version.

When looking through my stamps for a circular image, I came across this captain's wheel from PTI's Out to Sea.  I stamped it onto a Baja Breeze panel with Chocolate Chip ink.  The smaller wheel and one of the sentiments (which I cut apart) are stamped onto a notched strip of white cardstock that is popped up with foam tape.

To add to the nautical feel, I stamped the "rope" border from PTI's Men of Life under the banner.

Cardstock:  Stampin' Up! (Baja Breeze), WPlus9 Design Studio (White)
Stamps:  Papertrey Ink (Out to Sea, Men of Life)
Ink:  Stampin' Up! (Chocolate Chip, Baja Breeze)
Tool:  Papertrey Ink (Linen & Canvas impression plate)

Won't you join us in giving Julia Stainton a wonderful CASE Study "hello"?  I can't wait to see how you're inspired by her card.  :)

Thanks for visiting today!
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