Thursday, 25 March 2010

Dragon Fly

I bought this stamp a while ago online from Addicted to Rubber Stamps. It's from Magenta which I understand is a Canadian brand. (Amazing variety and great prices on this website, but beware Aussies, shipping costs are steep so you're better off ordering in one big bundle!) It's all in one piece mounted on woodblock, but I guess you could use the Direct to Rubber technique with markers if you wanted only one or two of the images.

I haven't had much chance to play around with it, altough I did disover it looks much better when embossed rather than simply stamped. That said, after getting the "Stained Glass" tutorial in the recent marker club, I'd be tempted to stamp this on vellum with stays on, and play around with colouring the images!

That said, here it is,(sorry photo taken during that crazy Melbourne storm a few weeks back). I'v stamped it with versamark and embossed it in black on whisper white cardstock. I've mounted it on SU Basic Black cardstock and then mounted that with dimensionals onto Old Olive.

For a change, I've used 12x12 cardstock that I've cut into three equal pieces  this one has a normal left hand side fold, however I wouldn't mind having this in a top-fold card which I think might work better.

And there's that 'best wishes' sentiment from short and sweet again! (I ended up embossing the sentiment too in the end as it looked a little dull simply stamped next to the embossed image). Thank god for the stamp-a-ma-jig is all I can say!

HINT:  Dont forget to use the emobossing buddy. It really shows up badly when you forget!!!!

Hope you like this one.

Next I'm on the hunt for a simple but 'fiddly' card. All my cards seem to be very 'clean and simple'. It's generally what I prefer, but I'd love to pull off one of those very pretty detailed cards! Any ideas I can case would be greatly appreciated!

Tuesday, 23 March 2010

Mostly Flowers

The Mostly Flowers set was the first stamp sets I bought online (thank you ebay).

I made a birthday card for David way back then. I actually think it was one of the first few cards I made if fact!. I found a photo of it here:

It's all a bit wonky but I was new then ok? (I wonder what my excuse is now? hehe)

I made it using the same mostly flowers set in the sympathy card, but this time left in it's original square shape. The cardstock is SU Always Artichoke and the images are stamped in SU Old Olive and Versa Magic Midnight Black, mounted with dimensionals.

The organza ribbon was nicked from a present I received the previous year, and the black stiched grosgrain ribbon was from one of the many $2 bargain stores that I love so much.

Well since then, I've taken the a similar theme, but played around with the layout. Since I discovered Kraft CS, I've found it hard to move away from - It's so versatile!

I've used SU choc chip CS for the background, and mounted the three images which were stamped in SU old olive and ruby red on whisper white cardsock.

I mounted them individually onto whisper white, but didn't like how they looked too individual and spaced out. So I double-mounted (mounted them again onto a single piece of whisper white) which seemed to bring them back together and created a crisper look which I must admit I preferred.

The sentiment is from SU Short and Sweet, and I embossed in in white.

I can freely admit this one didn't take much time at all. And now that I have the two sizes of square punches, this will be a breeze! A good one I think to make in quantities as it's quite versatile depending on the sentiment (hence why I used best wishes, I think it's a good all-rounder!)

Happy stamping!

Sunday, 21 March 2010

Sympathy cards

Sympathy cards are something I have not really turned my mind to, but unfortunately yesterday I got some very sad news that a friend lost her father after a long battle with illness and another friend lost her husband suddenly from a brain annurism. Sad and shocking news. They are two people who are trying to have a little space and and such, I wanted to send a card to say we were thinking of them, but looking through my stash, I didn't have anything I thought was appropriate.

So yesterday evening, I pulled out all my things and tried to come up with something I thought they would like, but that was not too bright or garish in the circumstances. Both of the recipients are into simple striking things, so this is what I managed to come up with:

I've used SU chocolate chip for the card, and the matting is SU very vanilla. The floral paper is called Making Memories diecut LgFloral Mocha Paperie. It came in a 12 x 12 sheet with die cut flowers through it at random intervals. I initially thoght I would put it directly onto the chocolate chip, but you couldn't really see the difference from the die cut detail to the printed flowers. Very vanilla did the trick I think.

Some satin ribbon in a mocha colour from my scrap ribbon collection finished it off.

The aim was to make something 'muted' befitting a sombre occasion, but also something beautiful to lift the spirits. I just hope it has that effect!

The second card was an idea that I had cased from Jenni Oliver long ago, but never had a crimper to be able to make my own version. Since my lovely mum was kind enough to get me a SU gift voucher from Sue Madex for my birthday, I finally got one of my own, along with lots of other lovely things on my wish list! Again I tried for muted colours, this time, SU Chocolate Chip, Kraft and Whisper White.

I have just crimped the front flap of the Kraft cardstock somewhere near the middle.

I then stamped the square mostly flowers stamp with choc chip on whisper white, punched it out with the 3.2cm circle punch. I mounted each design on 3.5cm circle punched whisper white paper which in turn was mounted on choc chip paper punched with the scallop square. (Phew! sounds complicated but actually nice and quick because of the punches).

Each of the three little stamped bundles were then mounted straight over the crimped bit using dimensionals.

The chocolate stiched grosgrain ribbon helped finish things off becuase I didn't have an appropriate sentiment stamp. (The idea was to have used something similar in size to the short and sweet sentiment but there was nothing appropriate in my stash).

Excuse the wierd white box on the bottom right had side of the inside picture. I only thought to take photos after writing in the card and didn't want to post such a personal message for the recipient online. I've blocked out that bit using my basic editing program (I sooo need photoshop).

The inserts are choc chip. I discovered my laser printer (which was purchased with work and study in mind prior to me getting into this card making gig) doesn't pick up cardstock which sucks, so the quote is printed on normal white printer paper in black. It would look better printed on whisper white in brown ink, but I guess we cant have everything!

There are more of the stamped images, but this time on Kraft scallops. I wrote in the panel with my choc chip marker.

Well that's it for now. I was deciding whether to post them, but I figured there's not a lot of examples of sympathy cards around, so I might as well. That said, I hope you never need them!

Take care and here's to crafting in happier times!

Friday, 12 March 2010

StampAMemory Challenge 5

Well I finally plucked up the courage to enter a scrapbook challenge - I must admit, when I saw what other beautiful entries were submitted, it was pretty daunting to consider throwing my proverbial hat in the ring!

This scrapbook challenge is through StampAMemory ( ) . The challenge was to create a layout using a quote that is special to you.

As some of you might know, David and I finally got married in December last year and ashamedly I am yet to scrapbook any of the beautiful photos our wonderful photographer Adrian Tuazon-McCheyne
( ) took for us.

So I thought, what better way to enter a challenge with a photo and quote that mean this much to me!

So here's my first attempt:

For this layout I used the following:

STAMPS: Vintage Labels (from the current SAB set)

CARDSTOCK:  Basic Grey as the base with outline matting in Going Grey. I also used Night of Navy for the trimming and printed from my laser printer directly onto the vellum for the quote, and laid it over whisper white cardstock

INK:  Versamark and Silver embossing powder 

TOOLS: Embossing Buddy, heat gun, matt pack 

ACCESSORIES:  Bashful Blue and Night of Navy grosgrain ribbon, with small silver brads.

Here I embossed Night of Navy cardstock in silver and cut around it (see what happens when you don't have a cool scallop circle punch!?) and used my matt pack to pierce the hole before putting the brad in the middle. Of course some dimensionals never go astray eh?

I also embossed the same stamped image directly onto the basic grey cardstock for some extra bling and some light and shade to the two-toned grey theme.

The quote is: " The closer I look, the more I find to love. " and at the risk of sounding like a typical mushy newlywed, it is really true! When David was all the way away in Italy, I really didn't think I could love him more (I was pretty pathetically smitten from the beginning) - but somehow over these last 4 years we have shared, the little sneak weaseled his way further into my heart! hehe

It's a pretty simple layout, but I hope its one that you all like :)

Well, *bites fingernails* that's it for my first challenge!

Happy crafting ladies, and thanks again for all your lovely comments thus far.

Tuesday, 9 March 2010

Wedding Cards

The thing about making your own cards, is that you end up always looking at shop-bought cards and wondering how something so expensive can be so banal at times. In this case, one of my best friends went wedding card shopping only to come back empty-handed. She asked if I could make something, and it was an interesting challenge because I wasn't sure I could pull off a card that wasn't too 'home -made' but not 'cold'! (does that make sense to anyone but me?)

In any event, this is what I came up with:

The embellishments were only $3 on sale at Spotlight. They came with some other bits and bobs and the veil was a lot longer (I just gave it a trim) but I mounted the outfits onto textured silver-grey paper which was in turn mounted on SU whisper white and back onto the grey before being mounted back onto the whisper white card stock.

It is a top folding card which was a bit different and the ribbon was American Craft in the discount sale box. (I promise the ribbon is straight in real life but it just won't play ball in the photos!)

The inside was an attempt to flow on from the outside, but when I stamped the greeting, my hand moved, and I botched the stamping! In a mad panic I was trying to work out how to patch it up, and after a few not so clever ideas, I did manage to use the scraps from the grey textured paper to matt the greeting I re-stamped properly onto another piece of the WW cardstock. In the end, I think it turned out better than the original look I had in mind!

The grey matting around the greeing helped break up the expanse of white, whilst still leaving room to write in the card. Dont you love it when mistakes can be positive!?

(I'm not sure why it stubbornly posts side-landscape when the photo is portrait) sorry about having to rotate your heads. Any hints would be welcomed! Hopefully you can still get the general gist of what I was getting at!

Of course, a wedding card is never complete without a matching envelope, so I kept the theme going with more scraps and the same greeting...

I hope you like it, and mostly I hope the couple likes it. (Its always so hard when you've never met the recipient of the card).

Happy scrapping people, and in keeping with the wedding theme, look out for my next post which will be my very first attempt at a scrapbooking challenge! . *Fingers Crossed!*

Monday, 8 March 2010

Craft Cupboard & Storage

A few weeks ago, I mentioned a trip to Ikea. My storage space for all things crafty was an underbed box, which then turned into two underbed boxes, three plastic bags, four shoe boxes and almost a partridge in a pear tree!

What would end up happening is that every time I felt like crafting, it would turn into this great saga as essentially I had to unpack everything just to get at a handful of items. It got a little crazy and in the end I wasn't achieving much at all as I had to allow a long enough block of time to unpack - craft - and pack back up, and let's face it, who has that much time?

My solution was a bookshelf in the study. It's the expedit bookshelf from ikea and you can buy insert cupboards and/or drawers. I bought both together with some funky black storage boxes and so far so good! What I like best is the paper sorting drawers from Big W. I have all my favourite and commonly used colours in it and it makes life so much easier when I have an idea about what I want!

You can also buy a desk that fits in snugly off the side: It would be a great space saving option for those who have limited space, but to be honest I'm not so keen on being tucked away in a bedroom while I scrap. I usually spread out on the dining table so David and I can chat away and sill spend time together despite doing 'our own thing'.

So now all that is left is to make little tags for the storage boxes to indicate what's inside. What do you think? I'd love to see your solutions!

Till then, happy crafting!

Sunday, 7 March 2010

Simple Masculine Birthday Card

One of my best friend's boyfriend celebrated his birthday yesterday.. I wanted to make a masculine card but not a traditionally 'blokey' card with hammers, cars etc... well, (just for something new) I used the presents stamp from the SAB set to make his card.. simple but I thought effective. Just for a little pizzaz (and largely because I'm addicted to embossing lately) I actually embossed all the presents on the front - just used my stamp-a-ma-jig and did them all at once which was suprisingly easy - even for me!!!

I ended up just using black cardstock, with SU Kraft overlay that I pierced along the top and bottom (HINT: SU's Matt pack made this almost idiot proof!)  I then matted the whisper white embossed image onto black cardstock and popped it up on some dimensionals. (I also discovered they're much more forgiving if your edges are slightly off!)

What I also discovered was that it was also a template which became easily modifyable if you were after a brighter version! 

(This could also look lovely with simple patterned paper, just to break the expansiveness of the colour).

Just pick your favourite cardstock colour and away you go! This one is on SU Kraft cardstock matted with SU Ruby Red and black . "Easy Peasy" as my nephews would say!