Sunday, January 30, 2011

Friday Mashup Sweet Sunday Valentine

When I saw these colors from the Friday Mashup challenge, I did not immediately think of Valentine's Day, but as you shall see, that is where my thoughts ended up!

Actually, when I first say these colors I thought of sherbet ice cream, but that's probably a story for another day!  However, I liked them enough that I wanted to give the challenge a try!  Being Sunday, I checked out the Sweet Sunday Sketch Challenge and decided that these two challenges were a go!

I have not used the owl punch nearly as much as I should, so I thought it would be good to use it here in place of the circle.

I love how you can make the eyeballs on this little guy look up, down, or all around!  On this card, I think he's watching all those hearts float away!

Thanks for stopping by and I hope you have time to stamp today!

Saturday, January 29, 2011

Stamping 411 Sketch Challenge 188

Today I thought I would participate in the Stamping 411 sketch challenge.

Do you find that inspiration comes from the many different places?  I do!  One of the design team cards got me thinking about the Newsprint dsp which I like very much, but had not used in quite a while.  So I settled on using that paper and a color scheme of very vanilla, basic black, and a little bit of real red.  Then I sat back and thought about what stamp set I would like to use.  All of my stamp sets are stacked in a bookcase that I got at Ikea so usually the ones on top are the only ones I see.  But today, one of my stacks was out out alignment so there was one stamp set peeking out from the bottom.  That one was Greenhouse Garden.  As one of my co-workers likes to say:  "light dawns on marble head" and I was off!

I went WAY into the vault on this one and found some red embossing powder that Stampin' Up! used to sell about a million years ago.  Actually it wasn't a million years ago.  I checked.  The last catalog I see it in is the 2006/2007 one.  But that's still a long time ago!  It shows up really nicely on the basic black cardstock.

Thanks for stopping by and I hope you have time to stamp today!

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Color Throwdown 126

It's no secret that I love earthy colors better than most.  If I see a color challenge that involves Crumb Cake, I heed the call.  The same goes for Early Espresso.  I thought Chocolate Chip was the brown of my dreams until I was introduced to Early Espresso.  In my opinion, this is a brown-lover's idea of heaven.  So this week's Color Throwdown challenge was irresistible to me.

And as if the lure of Early Espresso wasn't enough, this challenge also included an old favorite:  Kiwi Kiss.  I don't have much of this color left in my stash, so I have to use it sparingly.  I love how well it pairs with Early Espresso.

I wanted to do a little bit of tone-on-tone for this card so I embossed the By Definition background stamp with clear embossing powder on a panel of Early Espresso that I layered on top of my Early Espresso card base.  I wish it showed up better in the photo, but it looks so shiny and interesting in real life!

By the way, if anyone is keeping track of the snow storms that have hit my neck of the woods, today I woke up to almost another foot of snow!  It seems like every two weeks or so, we get a major snow storm here!  My snow blower deposits most of the snow from my driveway onto to my front yard, and I am not exaggerating when I say that the snow is about 5 feet deep there!!  I don't expect to see grass until June or so!  Anyway thanks for stopping by and I hope you have time to stamp today!

Color Lab Challenge 26

It's Thursday and time for another challenge from the ColorLab!

I have a particular fondness for everything gray, so I was very happy to see it as part of this color challenge.  And pairing it with Perfect Plumb is just divine!

And yes, I dug out some old designer paper for this card.  The basic gray background dp is from Urban Oasis and the perfect plum dp panel is from Cast-A-Spell.  I just love it when I can use holiday paper for a non-holiday card!  For this challenge I got a little help from the Paper Players and their sketch challenge this week.

Thanks for stopping by today and don't forget to pop on over to the ColorLab, check out the fabulous colors this week and create something!  We'd love to see what you do!

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

ColourQ 69 Thank You

Whenever I see Crumb Cake in a color challenge, I'm all over it!  This week the Colour Q challenge was all about Kraft (Crumb Cake), Cajun Craze, Peach Parfait and Rich Razzleberry.

I used the FTL 113 sketch for my layout (which I have used before).  I'm not ashamed to say that I like the original card better!  
I like the colors, I like the layout, but I don't like the RICH RAZZLEBERRY SMUDGE THAT I SOMEHOW MANAGED TO GET ON THIS CARD!!!!!

That's right.  That little splotch on the left side of the card is an unauthorized smudge.  Although I was the only person present in my stamp room when I made this card, I have no idea how it got there!  I didn't even know it was there until I went to take the picture of it, and by then I was too tired to try and re-do it, so the smudge stays.  I've decided to call it Artistic License. 

Thanks for stopping by and I hope you have time to stamp today!

Monday, January 24, 2011

MOJO 175

As I usually do on Monday I checked out the MOJO sketch challenge.

And as usual, I liked it enough to give it a try.  Early on as I contemplated what I wanted to do here, I was checking my retired stash of designer paper.  I decided to use some of my Ginger Blossom dp, partly because it included the fabulous River Rock, and partly because one of the other colors featured was an old favorite, Ruby Red, which I managed to save few pieces (because I figured it would come in handy some day)!

Now, I would also like to extend a big thank you to the uber-talented Jen Timko, who assured me that this scrunchy ribbon technique was simple. I finally felt like I could give it a try and I have to say she was right!  Looks good and super-easy to do!

Thanks for stopping by and I hope you  have time to stamp today!

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Color Throwdown 125 and Stamping 411 187

I think that my brain got frozen today and that it severely affected my stamping!  Earlier today I volunteered to serve hot chocolate to sledders at Borderland State Park and it was cold!  I mean, bone-chilling, frost-bite temperatures cold!  When I got home, I intended to spend some time in my stamp room, but I was finding it difficult to concentrate!  I finally forced myself to get it together and ended up creating a card using the Stamping 411 sketch challenge and the Color Throwdown color challenge.

I went through several iterations of this card before I settled on this clean and simple one.

Oh how I love crumb cake!  Thanks for stopping by and I hope you have time to stamp today!

Saturday, January 22, 2011

A Waltzingmouse Inkspiration Valentine

I have recently discovered that I am sorely lacking in Valentine's stamps.  Today I sat at my desk and tried to think of a cute Valentine's Day stamp set that I could use with the latest Waltzingmouse sketch challenge.  I thought I'd incorporate the Inkspiration color challenge as well.
The colors are somewhat unusual for Valentine's Day, but I figured I could make it work with the Blushing Bride.  I thought the nice, big heart from the Love You Much stamp set would be perfect for the large shape on the sketch.  So, onward I went!

I stamped the big heart with Versamark and embossed it with clear embossing powder.  I thought the pattern would show up better that way.  After I embossed it, I cut it out and sponged the edges with Blushing Bride.  Once I was done with my layers and my oh-so cute heart, I realized I needed some kind of sentiment.  This is when I realized that I had no decent Valentine's Day stamps.  So I was forced to resort to one of those bargain clear stamps that you get in the dollar bin at the local craft store.  Although, the sentiment is appropriate, the quality of the stamp is horrible!  The edges are blurry and the rest is splotchy.  Hopefully, the recipient of this card can overlook this!

Thanks for stopping by and I hope you have time to stamp today!

Friday, January 21, 2011

Bird Challenge

This week the Friday Mashup challenge was to use birds.  This was right up my alley because I have been a bird watcher for about 20 years or so.  In fact some months ago, I purchased a tutorial from Lynn Pratt to learn how to make a cardinal, a downey woodpecker and a baltimore oriole using various Stampin' Up punches.  So this was the perfect challenge to dig that tutorial out and get to work!  I got a lot of help from the FTL sketch challenge layout.

For my card, I made a cardinal and incorporated my long-neglected Woodland Walk dsp as a background.  I really love that woodgrain dsp and I'm not sure why I haven't used it that much!

I ended up not having enough room for a sentiment, but I like it all the same!  At least this way, I can use it for whatever occasion comes up!

Thanks for stopping by and I hope you have time to stamp today!

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Color Lab Challenge 25

It's Thursday and time for another challeng from the Color Lab!

I'm not sure what's going on in the challenge world this week, but this is the second time I've encountered Pacific Point.  I've said before that it's not one of my favorite colors, but I think I secretly like using it!  At first glance it seems kind of brash, but then it begins to grow on you and you realize that it's really a wonderful color that goes with so many others.  Every time I use it I think "that wasn't so bad!"

This week, I turned to my favorite favor, the matchbox, and embellished it with a Pacific Point flower adorned with some Old Olive leaves from my absolute favorite stamp set:  French Foliage.

Thanks for stopping by today and don't forget to pop on over to the Color Lab, check out the fabulous colors this week and create something!  We'd love to see what you do.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

SSSC100 Color Dare 93 Valentine

When I got home from work today I checked out the color challenge over at the Color Dare.  My thought process went something like this:  Regal Rose (love it), Pink Pirouette (excellent choice with Regal Rose), Pacific Point (what?!?!?!?).  I have never been a big fan of Pacific Point.  I've used it before and although I admit that it grows on you, my first reaction when I saw this color challenge was "no way!"  Then I scrolled down to see the design team cards and I couldn't help but change my mind.  If you haven't clicked my Color Dare link to check out the amazing cards made with this unusual color combo, I encourage you to do so now!

I decided to make my card with a little help from the Sweet Sunday Sketch Challenge.

This week is sketch challenge #100!  Congratulations Karen!  What a milestone!  I'm sure it's quite a time committment to produce an interesting sketch challenge week after week and I certainly appreciate her efforts!  I really look forward to checking out the challenge on Sunday morning and hope that I'll have the time to participate.  This week I did!

Here's my Valentine take on the sketch and color challenge:

Thanks for stopping by and I hope you have time to stamp today!

Monday, January 17, 2011

MOJO176 and Paper Players 30

Well, despite the fact that I'm suffering from depression that the Patriots lost to the Jets on Sunday, I managed to find my way to my stamp room and concentrate on making a card for the MOJO and Paper Players challenges. 

Once again, I've tried my hand at watercoloring.  Why does it always look so good when I see other people do it?  I especially like the watercolor technique that Ilina Crouse uses all the time, and that's the one I've been practicing lately.  I'm not sure I've got the hang of it, but I'll keep trying!
After I put this card together, I realized that it didn't have a sentiment.  So I stamped a teeny-tiny thanks {so much} from the Tiny Tags stamps set and hung it from the River Rock button with a some crochet thread.

Thanks for stopping by and I hope you have time to stamp today!

Saturday, January 15, 2011

Monochromatic Card

I was very intrigued by the Just Add Ink challenge this week, which is all about creating a monochromatic card.  I've always had a special fondness for all things monochrome so I spent quite bit of time debating with myself what color I wanted to use for this challenge.

For my layout, I turned to the FTL sketch challenge this week, which to my mind is just taylor-made for a monochromatic card.

For my card, I settled on Crumb Cake.  I paper pierced and sponged the horizontal layer so that it would stand out a bit from the card base.

I love this flower!  It's the Tattered Florals Sizzix die from the Tim Holtz collection.  I'm not sure you can see it here, but it is stamped with the French Script stamp.  After I stamp it, I crinkle it up a bit then pierce a hole in the center and hold it all together with the Antique Brad.

Thanks for stopping by and I hope you have time to stamp today!

Friday, January 14, 2011

Color Throwdown 124

It seems that I'm in a shabby mood.  It started yesterday when I made a Valentine's Day card and continues today with a card I made for the Color Throwdown 124 color challenge.

Brown and blue together are a particular favorite of mine.  Actually brown and any color are favorites of mine!  And I thought the Melon Mambo was a great accent color.

Despite how this may look, it really is Melon Mambo under all that distressing!  A wonderful Antique Brad finishes off the flower nicely!  For this card, I used the Splitcoast Sketch Challenge for my layout.  It has been ages since I've done any challenges on Splitcoast.  In fact, it's been ages since I've uploaded anything to Splitcoast.  I hope I remember how it's done!

Thanks for stopping by and I hope you have time to stamp today!

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Color Lab Challenge 24

It's Thursday and time for another challenge from the Color Lab!

Aren't these colors awesome?  I absolutely love earthy colors like Soft Suede and when I first saw this color combo I immediately thought they would make a fabulous non-traditional Valentine's Day card.  The Rose Red and Blushing Bride provide just the right amount of Valentine's cheer!

I decided to go a little shabby with my card.  Initially I didn't intend for it to be that way, but for some reason Soft Suede makes me want to ink up my edges and create a soft vintage look.  You'll notice that the challenge this week was to add just a little bit of Crumb Cake.  I added mine by stamping the woodgrain heart from the I {Heart} Hearts stamp set and then punching out some tiny hearts from that stamped image.  Much cuter than a brad, I say to myself!

Thanks for stopping by today and don't forget to pop on over to the Color Lab, check out the fabulous colors this week, and create something!  We'd love to see what you do!

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

MOJO173 and Colour Q 67

Another day another snowstorm here in New England!  That's right, I spent a big part of my day shoveling a foot of heavy, wet snow.  The good news is that I got another bonus day off from work since the conditions outside were pretty awful.  The bad news is that I lost power this morning around 5:30 and didn't get it back until 2:30.  It was getting pretty chilly in my house and I was actually contemplating going to my sister's house (once I managed to clear the snow from the end of my driveway, that is).

So, I was very happy to see the colors this week over at the ColourQ.  Warm and tropical are just what I need right about now!  For my layout I chose the latest MOJO sketch.

I was actually having a little creative block with these colors until I decided that such tropical colors needed an actual tropical card and I reached for my Tropical Party stamp set.  It's been a while since I've used Kiwi Kiss so it was nice to see it featured in this challenge.

Well, it's back to work for me tomorrow.  Hopefully Mother Nature is through with all this stormy stuff.  If it snows again, I'm not sure where I'll actually put the snow.  The snow banks at the end of my driveway are already so high that I'm not sure I can heave any more snow up there!  On the plus side, I think I'm getting a pretty good workout!  Always look on the bright side!

Thanks for stopping by and I hope you have time to stamp today!

Monday, January 10, 2011

Curtain Call 64 Snowman

I guess I'm not done with winter after all!  Maybe it has something to do with the newest snowstorm headed my way.  I actually didn't know about the snowstorm when I first decided to make this card, so maybe I'm a little bit psychic?!?  In any event I decided on a snowman for my Curtain Call 64 color challenge card.

I couldn't resist after seeing this brave snowboarder!

A little shimmery goodness in the form of dazzling diamonds highlights the edge of my "snow."  And to keep a promise that I made to myself to use my felt stash more, I added the scalloped piece at the top.  By a strange coincidence, the color matches Marina Mist almost exactly!  I owe the layout to the FTL71 sketch from December 2009.
Thanks for stopping by and I hope you have time to stamp today!

Sunday, January 9, 2011

Just Add Ink 50 & Waltzingmouse 29

I think I'm definitely addicted to challenges.  I feel lost without them.  When I first started my cardmaking journey, I spent hours and hours scouring Splitcoast Stampers for ideas, but I pretty much CASED everything I saw.  (And I saw some beautiful stuff).  But then I decided to try my hand at making my own cards.  Looking back, it was a very scary decision to make because I had no idea if I actually had any ideas of my own!

Turns out I did, and although I don't love everything I create, I keep plugging away at it.  And I'm extremely grateful for all the wonderful card-makers out there that inspire me with their sketch challenges and color challenges.  Not to mention all the card-makers out there that participate in the challenges.  The creativity that I see never ceases to amaze me!

That being said, today I've decided to make a card using the very challenging Just Add Ink color challenge which I paired with the equally challenging Waltzingmouse sketch challenge.

Sometimes a clean and simple layout is not so simple after all!  I almost started out making a wine bottle tag, but then decided to make a card using one of my favorite layouts.  And what about those colors?  Never, in my wildest dreams would I have imagined putting elegant eggplant with the other colors, but it works!

Thanks for stopping by and I hope you have time to stamp today!

Saturday, January 8, 2011

FTL122 and PPA76

Ever since the holidays have been over and done with I seem to be having trouble finding my creative mojo.  I've sat down at my desk and tried to get my creative juices going, but I keep coming up empty.  That doesn't stop me from trying however.  I'm pretty sure if I keep going, eventually I'll make something that I really like!

So, as I usually do at the end of the week, I check out the PPA challenge and the FTL challenge.

Once again, I'm drawn to these spring-like colors.  When I look outside my window, all I see is snow so it's no surprise that these colors make me dream of warmer weather.  With a little bit of patience, it will come!

For this card, I went on an excavation into the deepest recesses of my "vault" and found some ancient Perfect Plum dsp.  I have no idea what it's called, or how old it is, but I'm pretty sure that it's pretty old.  I've only got a few scraps left, so it will probably be some time before I use it again!

Thanks for stopping by and I hope you have time to stamp today!

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Color Throwdown 123

I think I've been in a very springy mood lately.  I assume that's why I've been so intrigued with a bunch of color challenges lately that feature bright colors that remind me of warm weather to come.  This week's Color Throwdown challenge was no exception.  Always Artichoke, Baja Breeze and Cameo Coral - what a combo!

For my clean and simple layout I turned to the FLT55 layout from August 2009.  I have long been an advocate of keeping a library of sketches for inspiration.  Luckily some of the sketch challenge blogs that I visit publish a .pdf of their sketch challenges and I dutifully print them out and keep them in a binder.  That way, I've got some inspiration on hand when I need it.  I can't tell you how many times I've used them when I needed a nudge in the right direction.

Thanks for stopping by and I hope you have time to stamp today!

Color Lab Challenge 23

It's Thursday and time for another challenge from the Color Lab!

This week we've got some great colors for our first challenge of 2011.  They're so bright, cheery and springy.  They remind me that spring really IS just around the corner (I'm not much of a fan of winter)!  For my card I decided to use my brand new Build a Blossom stamp set with my Blossom Petals Punch.  This is such a big, bold flower I can't help but love it!

It's so easy to create this flower with the stamp set and coordinating punch.  I've so many beautiful cards lately using this set, I can't wait to ink it up some more.

Thanks for stopping by today and don't forget to pop on over to the Color Lab, check out the fabulous colors this week, and create something!  We'd love to see what you do!

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

CQC #66

I thought the colors this week at the Colour Q challenge blog were quite refreshing after several weeks of Christmas greens and reds.

Unfortunately, my camera did not think these colors so neat.  I'm no photographer, but I'm trying to experiment with my camera to get the best picture possible.  This card would not cooperate with me!  No matter what I tried:  flash off, flash on, light box lights on, light box lights off, the colors seemed washed out.  I'm sure there's a way to correct this, but I'm at a loss so I've posted what I think is the best of the bunch (and that's not saying much).

Ugh!  So frustrating.  But I thank you for taking the time to visit and I hope you have time to stamp today!

Sunday, January 2, 2011

Valentine's Day is Just Around the Corner!

I know it seems a little premature, but Valentine's Day is only 43 days away!  It seems like a long time, but if you think about it 43 days will be gone before you know it.  I tend to start thinking about holidays well in advance of the actual date so that I have time to make some cute cards and whatever else I can think of, so I'm right on time.  I hope you are too!

Being Sunday and all, I checked out the new Sweet Sunday sketch and decided to jump start my Valentine's Day cards!

And Karen's card with the delicious felt made me remember that a few weeks ago, I had seen a gorgeous card made with felt by Lil' Inker Designs and I promised myself that I would dig in to my felt stash and actually use it.

I ran some pink felt through my Tasteful Trim Sizzix die, then stitched some chocolate chip ribbon to it with a zig-zag stitch.  Aside from the fact that the birds are crooked and the picture itself is crooked, I'm pretty happy with this card.  I feel like I've gotten my feet wet with the felt, and before winter is over I hope to use it some more.

Thanks for stopping by and I hope you have time to stamp today!