Previous month:
September 2011
Next month:
November 2011

October 2011

Frame It!

Hi there!

I have a story to share.  When our second child moved out of the house to begin his adult life, my husband and I decided to renovate the empty bedroom into a "man cave."  I wanted to use warm colors and chose a blue that reminded me of Not Quite Navy for the lower half of the walls with a very light shade of this blue for the upper half of the wall.  Then I planned to sponge two intermediate shades of the blue over the lighter color.  In between the two halves of the wall would be a chair rail with a rope motif which was also used to frame the window. 

I had never sponged walls before but I had seen the results of others work and thought that I could accomplish this easily.  I picked up a brochure about sponging at the local home improvement store and read the instructions, gathered my supplies, and set to work.  I started with a small area on one wall and the results were hideous!  The paint seemed to look like splats on the wall instead of a gentle texture.  I thought maybe the sponge was the wrong type, so I repainted that section of the wall and went back to the store and found a different type of sponge.  I tried again and even with the new type of sponge, more splats!  I repainted the wall, again, reread the brochure, again, and in frustration headed back to the store.  I spoke to the gentleman mixing the paint and he assured me that I was doing the right thing but that maybe I should have a lighter hand and less paint.  He also recommended a sponge roller.  I tried again.  The results this time were worse than ever!  I was in tears as I repainted the wall yet again. 

This time I called Mom & Dad and told them the whole sorry tale and asked what I was doing wrong.  I have to mention that they are champion wall painters and have tried pretty much every technique for decorating walls with a high level of success.  They were stymied and told me they'd be right over.  I set up the supplies, explained what I was trying to do and they examined my tools.  Then Mom asks me to demonstrate my technique.  I picked up the sponge, lightly tapped the paint and headed to the wall.  Mom and Dad began chuckling and told me to stop.  It turns out that I had the right type of sponge the first time, the second time, and even the third time!  The problem wasn't the sponges, it was water!  Actually the LACK of water...the sponge needed to be damp.  I went back to the brochure and showed my parents that there was no mention of a damp sponge.  Mom demonstrated the proper technique with the sponge and I was on my way.  Mom and Dad even stuck around to help and we finished pretty quickly. 

So fast forward to today and the Frame It stamp set.  When I first saw it in the catalog, I envisioned scrapbook pages and a fun way to incorporate a "wall" of photos.  Here's what I came up with for the September meeting of the SASS Stamp Club.

Frame_It_LeftFrame_It_Right
(click on each page to see larger images)

I wanted to use the Well Worn Designer Series Paper for the lower half of the walls and picked up colors from the paper to use for the frames:  Cajun Craze, Early Espresso, Not Quite Navy, and Soft Suede.  The frame images were stamped on the cardstock with Versamark, covered with Gold embossing powder, and heat embossed with the Heat Tool.  Then each frame was cut out with Paper Snips.  When I placed the strip of paper and the frames on the Very Vanilla Textured cardstock base pages (without adhering them), the pages just seemed to scream "Bland!"  So I sat there and stared at them waiting for inspiration to strike.  Nothing.  So I decided to step away and tidy up.  While I was putting sponges away, I came across some small sea sponges.  Of course!  Sponge the walls!

I dampened my small sea sponge, tapped the sponge lightly on my Not Quite Navy ink pad, and I was on my way.  IMPORTANT NOTE!  As my Mom explained to me, the damp sponge should actually be considered "essence of damp" sponge.  To achieve this effect:  wet the sponge, squeeze out as much water as you can with your fingertips, then place the sponge in a paper towel and squeeze again. 

Once the sponging was complete, I adhered the strip of Well Worn Designer Series Paper across the bottom edge of each base page and place a "chair rail" of Not Quite Navy Textured cardstock along the top edge of the Well Worn Designer Series Paper.  Then I added the frames to the top half of the wall.  For the left page, I used the rectangular and circular frames and for the right page the oval and square frames.  The circular frame was "hung" on a strip of Not Quite Navy 3/8" Taffeta ribbon.  A small bow of the same ribbon was placed at the top of the frame with a Mini Glue Dot.  At the bottom right corner of the right page is a medallion created by stamping the "Memories" image on Very Vanilla cardstock using Not Quite Navy ink.  The image was punched with the Medium Oval punch and matted with a piece of Cajun Craze cardstock punched with the Scallop Oval punch.  These were adhered to a piece of Brushed Gold cardstock punched with the Decorative Label punch using Stampin' Dimensionals.  The completed medallion was adhered to the base page with Stampin' Dimensionals.  Oh, I almost forgot...the edges of the punched Brushed Gold cardstock were sponged with Not Quite Navy ink.

I liked the small circular frame wall hanging "treatment" so well, I decided to incorporate a part of the this into the 3" x 6" cards for my non-scrapbookers.

Frame_It_3x6Frame_It_InsideFrame_It_Envelope
(click on each photo to see larger images)

The "Hello" image comes from the Posy Punch Hostess stamp set and was adhered to the frame with Stampin' Dimensionals.  The inside of the card features strips of Well Worn Designer Series Paper adhered along the top and bottom edges of a piece of Very Vanilla cardstock liner.  The liner was adhered to the inside sentiment area of the card.  A contrasting piece of Well Worn Designer Series Paper was adhered to the envelope flap of the Small Open End Envelope.

I can't walk past a sponged wall (or into my husband's "man cave") without remembering my adventures with wall sponging.  It's one of those memories that I can look back on now with humor and treasure for the lessons learned.  Sometimes learning something new can be frustrating; however, this time perseverance reaped a significant reward. 

Sponged-Wall
(click on photo to see larger image)

Have a great weekend!

Robertssiggy

Stamps:  Frame It, Posy Punch; Inks:  Not Quite Navy, Versamark; Cardstock:  Brushed Gold, Cajun Craze, Early Espresso, Not Quite Navy, Not Quite Navy Textured, Soft Suede, Very Vanilla, Very Vanilla Textured; Designer Series Paper:  Well Worn; Embellishments:  Not Quite Navy 3/8" Taffeta ribbon; Adhesives:  SNAIL, Stampin' Dimensionals, Mini Glue Dots; Tools:  Paper Cutter/Scorer, Paper Snips, Bone Folder, Sponge, Decorative Label punch, Scallop Oval punch, Medium Oval punch, Embossing Buddy, Gold embossing powder, Heat Tool; Other:  Page Protectors, Small Open End Envelope; Non-Stampin' Up!:  Small Sea Sponge


Thank U

Hello!

Still making cards from all the leftover kits from workshops and Stamp Club.  I'm certainly building up a stack of cards to sell.  My husband, the optimist, keeps asking me what I'll do with all of them if I don't sell them.  I give him "the look".

Here's a card I designed as a Thank You to my awesome customers for their September orders.

Thank_You_Pennant_Flag
(click on card to see larger image)

One of the fun new stamp sets (and coordinating punch) in the 2011-2012 Stampin' Up! Idea Book & Catalog is the Pennant Parade stamp set.  I have seen so many fun ways to use this stamp and its coordinating punch, so I just had to mount these stamps and get them inky!  The inspiration for this card comes from the stories of the golf course shared by my husband and sister, Kathy.  They are both relatively new to the sport and their trials and tribulations are sometimes pretty hilarious.  In fact, they were on the golf course when I designed this card.  Now I realize that a golf flag does not sit in a flower pot, nor is the hole an oval; but when I finished the card it just seemed to say "golf course". That's my story and I'm stickin' to it...

This card begins with a card base of Garden Green (the edges of the card front sponged with Garden Green ink).  A mat of Old Olive cardstock was run through the Big Shot inside the Perfect Polka Dots Textured Impressions embossing folder and then the edges of the cardstock were sponged with Old Olive ink.  In addition, the sponge was rubbed lightly across the raised polka dots to bring them into higher relief.  A piece of Early Espresso cardstock was punched with the Large Oval punch (formerly known as the Wide Oval punch) and adhered near the lower left corner of the Old Olive panel.

The flag Consists of a piece of Cajun Craze cardstock stamped with the scallop pennant using Cajun Craze ink and punched out with the scallop pennant window of the Petite Pennants Builder punch.  On top of the Cajun Craze pennant is a piece of More Mustard cardstock stamped with the same scallop pennant stamp using Cajun Craze ink, but this time the image was punched out with the straight side pennant window of the Petite Pennants Builder punch.  The More Mustard pennant was adhered to the center of the Cajun Craze pennant using Stampin' Dimensionals.  The "Thank U" stamp, also part of the Pennant Parade stamp set, was stamped on a scrap of Whisper White cardstock using Garden Green ink and punched with the 3/4" circle punch and adhered to the More Mustard pennant using SNAIL.  The flower pot was also stamped with Garden Green ink on a scrap of Whisper White cardstock and cut out with Paper Snips.  The pennants and flower pot were adhered to a Bamboo Skewer with Tombow Multi-Adhesive.  (I cut the Bamboo Skewer to size using the Craft & Rubber Scissors.)  After the adhesive dried, a piece of Whisper White 3/8" Taffeta ribbon was tied around the pole under the pennants.  Then the completed focal point was adhered to the card front using Tombow Multi-Adhesive.

Thank_You_Pennant_Flag_Inside
(click on card to see larger image)

The inside sentiment area of the card was lined with a piece of Whisper White cardstock, the edges sponged with Garden Green ink.  The scallop pennant was stamped twice; once with More Mustard ink and the second time with Cajun Craze ink.  The star image, also from the Pennant Parade stamp set, was stamped just above the outside edge of the two stamped pennants using Old Olive ink.  Lines of Garden Green ink were added to link the stars with the pennants and the pennants to each other using the pen tip of a Garden Green Stampin' Write Marker. 

Thank_You_Pennant_Flag_Envelope
(click on envelope to see larger image)

The scallop pennant was stamped one final time near the lower left front corner of the Medium Whisper White Envelope.  The "Thank U" image was stamped over the inside of the pennant using Garden green ink.

One of the things I like most about Stampin' Up! is the color coordination: inks, papers, and markers.  You can see this with the Garden Green cardstock, ink, and Stampin' Write Marker used for this card.  In addition, I love that there are punches that coordinate with the stamp sets.  It makes the creative process so much easier and making multiples of the same card so much quicker to complete. 

Big_Shot_Promo

As a reminder, there are only a few more days to take advantage of this month's great Big Shot promotion.  When you look back at the projects that I feature on this blog, you'll see that many of them have an element (or two or three) that incorporates one of the many Big Shot dies, embossing folders, or texture plates; many exclusive for Stampin' Up!  I just LOVE the Big Shot!  So if you've ever considered becoming a Stampin' Up! Demonstrator, now is a great time to sign up because you'll receive a Big Shot for FREE!!  (Or if you already have a Big Shot, you'll be able to select $100 in merchandise for FREE.)  For more information, be sure to contact me right away.

Robertssiggy

Stamps:  Pennant Parade; Inks:  Cajun Craze, Garden Green, More Mustard, Old Olive; Stampin' Write Markers:  Garden Green; Cardstock:  Cajun Craze, Early Espresso, Garden Green, More Mustard, Old Olive, Whisper White; Embellishments:  Whisper White 3/8" Taffeta ribbon; Adhesives:  SNAIL, Stampin' Dimensionals, Tombow Multi-Adhesive; Tools:  Paper Cutter/Scorer, Paper Snips, Craft & Rubber Scissors, Bone Folder, Sponge, Petite Pennants Builder punch, 3/4" circle punch, Large Oval punch, Big Shot w/Standard Cutting Plates, Multi-Purpose Platform, Perfect Polka Dots Textured Impressions embossing folder; Other:  Medium Whisper White Envelope; Non-Stampin' Up!:  Bamboo Skewer


Christmas Peace

Hi there!

Hope all is well in your world.  I'm really enjoying our first real taste of Fall in East Central Florida.  The temperatures are in the lower 70s, the windows are open, and it's wonderful to be airing out the house after all these months of air conditioning.

The last week or so, I've been making Christmas Cards.  Lots of Christmas Cards.  I have boxes of card kits from the last two years of Christmas Card classes that I had set aside for my own use, but never got to them because there was a significant family crisis at Christmas time both years.  In a couple of weeks I have an opportunity to sell these cards along with others that were extras from workshops and Stamp Club.  Needless to say, after 210 Christmas Cards, I have Christmas Cards on the brain.  So here's a new one that I designed for the October meeting of the SASS Stamp Club.

Comfort_Joy
(click on card to see larger image)

I wanted to show that when you add Designer Series Paper to a Christmas Card, it doesn't have to come from a Christmas-themed paper pack.  The Poppy Parade paper you see here is from the Pocket Full of Posies Designer Series Paper.  I chose it because of the background color and the similarity of the starburst design on the paper with the design on the Snow Burst Textured Impressions embossing folder.

This card begins with a card base of Basic Gray.  On top of a piece of Basic Black cardstock are adhered:  a piece of Brushed Silver cardstock embossed the Big Shot and the Snow Burst Textured Impressions embossing folder (Holiday Mini Catalog), a piece of Shimmery White cardstock cut with the scallop border from the Tasteful Trim Bigz XL die, and the piece of Poppy Parade paper.

The focal point for the card is the Peace Dove image from the Comfort & Joy stamp set (Holiday Mini Catalog) stamped with Versamark on Shimmery White cardstock and heat embossed with Pewter embossing powder (also in the Holiday Mini Catalog).  The Shimmery White piece is matted with a piece of Basic Black cardstock and mounted on the right side of a mat of Poppy Parade cardstock with Stampin' Dimensionals.  A piece of Whisper White 3/8" Taffeta ribbon is wrapped around the left edge of the Poppy Parade cardstock and knotted on front.  The Poppy Parade cardstock is mounted to the card front with Stampin' Dimensionals.

Comfort_Joy_Inside
(click on card to see larger image)

The inside sentiment area of the card is lined with Whisper White cardstock.  The round starburst image from the My Friend stamp set was stamped side-by-side along the upper edge of the liner and a strip of the Poppy Parade paper was adhered along the top edge of the liner.  The edges of the liner were sponged with Poppy Parade ink.  The "Peace On Earth" sentiment was stamped just below the top border of the liner using Poppy Parade ink.  The Comfort & Joy sentiment was stamped at the center of the liner using Basic Gray ink.

Comfort_Joy_Envelope_FrontComfort_Joy_Envelope_Back
(click on envelopes to see larger images)

The front of the Medium Whisper White Envelope was stamped with the round starburst image side-by-side along the left edge of the envelope.  The envelope flap was embossed with the Snow Burst Textured Impressions embossing folder.  The edges of the flap were sponged with Poppy Parade ink and then the sponge was lightly brushed across the raised embossing.

Simple stamped images and help from the Big Shot make this card a good choice when you need to make multiple cards for Christmas.  I like that there are some non-traditional colors used in this card.  I like the warm feel of the Poppy Parade versus the bold statement of the more traditional Real Red.  And the Basic Gray and Basic Black cardstocks allow the Brushed Silver stand on its own with the Poppy Parade and Shimmery White cardstocks. 

Well, I need to get back to work on those cards!  I'll be back in a couple of days with another project from the October SASS Stamp Club meeting.

Robertssiggy

Stamps:  Comfort & Joy, My Friend; Inks:  Basic Gray, Poppy Parade, Versamark; Cardstock:  Basic Black, Basic Gray, Brushed Silver, Poppy Parade, Shimmery White, Whisper White; Designer Series Paper:  Pocket Full of Posies; Embellishments:  Whisper White 3/8" Taffeta ribbon; Adhesives:  SNAIL, Stampin' Dimensionals; Tools:  Paper Cutter/Scorer, Paper Snips, Bone Folder, Sponge, Pewter embossing powder, Heat Tool, Embossing Buddy, Big Shot w/Standard Cutting Plates, Multi-Purpose Platform, Snow Burst Textured Impressions embossing folder, XL Cutting Plates, Tasteful Trim Bigz XL die; Other:  Medium Whisper White Envelope


A Big Hello to Fall

Hello!

Fall officially began a few weeks ago, but it takes time to really FEEL Fall in East Central Florida.  Well, tonight's when it's going to happen.  A big cold front is driving down from the North and will be arriving overnight bringing low temps below 60 degrees.  This makes for great sleeping weather and the ability to open up the house to take advantage of the milder temps during the day.  Hooray!

I wanted to include this Fall feeling into a stack of cards I was making for folks who purchased products from me in October. 

My_Friend
(click on card to see larger image)

The design layout used for this card is one of my favorites because it's quick and easy to cut and assemble.  The top panel of Very Vanilla is stamped with the flourished "hello" image from the My Friend stamp set using Chocolate Chip ink.  The bottom panel is a piece of Garden Green cardstock stamped with the foliage image from the My Friend stamp set in the lower left corner using Garden ink.  Then the panel was run through the Big Shot in the Stripes Textured Impressions embossing folder.  Both stamped panels were adhered to a piece of More Mustard cardstock.  A piece of Chocolate Chip 5/8" Satin ribbon was wrapped around the More Mustard cardstock and knotted on top of the panels.  A Mini Glue Dot was placed under the ribbon knot to anchor the ribbon in place.  The panel was adhered to the Chocolate Chip card front.  Note that the edges of all the cardstock pieces were sponged:  More Mustard ink for the More Mustard cardstock, Garden Green ink for the Garden Green cardstock, and Chocolate Chip ink for the Very Vanilla cardstock.

My_Friend_Inside
(click on card to see larger image)

The inside sentiment area of the card was lined with a piece of Very Vanilla cardstock; the edges sponged with Chocolate Chip ink.  The foliage image was inked with Garden Green ink, stamped on a piece of scrap paper, then stamped at the lower left corner of the liner (a process called "stamping off").  The "my friend" sentiment was stamped near the upper center of the liner using Chocolate Chip ink.

My_Friend_Envelope
(click on envelope to see larger image)

The "hello" image was stamped at the center of the Medium Very Vanilla Envelope flap using Chocolate Chip ink. 

I realize that some folks may think that using Garden Green in a Fall card may be a bit strong; however, here in my neck of the woods, a strong green is dominant every season of the year.  We do have some Fall colors from the trees, but not in the magnificent way that you see them in areas further North (like on the Blue Ridge Parkway in the Appalachians).  The More Mustard reminds me of the Sycamore tree that sheds its gigantic gold leaves all over my Mom's yard (she lives about 20 miles South of me).  The oak trees in my yard shed leaves, but they are more like the Chocolate Chip color of the card base.  Those leaves don't really start falling until after Christmas. 

The talented artists at Pals Paper Arts are featuring Fall/Thanksgiving projects for this week's challenge.  To see some lovely cards for Fall, check out their web site by clicking here.  I'll be submitting this card for the challenge.

Robertssiggy

Stamps:  My Friend; Inks:  Chocolate Chip, Garden Green, More Mustard; Cardstock:  Chocolate Chip, Garden Green, More Mustard, Very Vanilla; Embellishments:  Chocolate Chip 5/8" Satin ribbon; Adhesives:  SNAIL, Mini Glue Dots; Tools:  Paper Cutter/Scorer, Paper Snips, Bone Folder, Sponge, Big Shot w/Standard Cutting Plates, Multi-Purpose Platform, Stripes Textured Impressions embossing folder; Other:  Medium Very Vanilla Envelope


Spooky

Hello there!

Here's a Halloween card that I designed for a Shoebox Swap.  The Swap occurred the last weekend of September at Stampcation.  This fun 2-day event is hosted by Linda Heller and Shantaie Fowler and consists of demonstrations by local Stampin' Up! Demonstrators, awesome Make & Takes designed by Linda and Shantaie, the Shoebox Swap, and lots of time and table space to work on your own projects. 

Spooky_Owl
(click on card to see larger image)

A Shoebox Swap card is intended to be completed in 10-15 minutes using a design that can be followed with little or no written instruction.  Since we only had the space available on a Stampin' Up! grid sheet to work with, we needed to complete any work that required time consuming steps or tools that require lots of space.  So the gold embossed frame, black embossed owls, and the texture for the More Mustard cardstock were completed ahead of time.

This card begins with a card base of Cajun Craze (the edges sponged with Cajun Craze ink).  Attached to the card front is a piece of More Mustard cardstock run through the Big Shot with the Perfect Details Texturz plate.  The edges of the embossed cardstock were sponged with More Mustard ink and then the sponge was lightly rubbed across the embossing.  The edges of a strip of Well Worn Designer Series Paper were sponged with Cajun Craze ink, matted with a piece of Early Espresso cardstock, and adhered about 3/4" above the bottom edge of the More Mustard cardstock. 

The large rectangular frame, from the Frame It stamp set, was stamped with Versamark on Very Vanilla cardstock, covered with Gold embossing powder and melted with the Heat Tool.  The frame, inside and out, was cut out with Paper Snips.  A piece of Cajun Craze cardstock just a tad larger than the interior dimensions of the frame was adhered to the More Mustard cardstock; then the frame was adhered over the Cajun Craze cardstock using Stampin' Dimensionals.  The Halloween Owl, from the Warmest of Wishes Hostess stamp set, was stamped with Versamark twice on Very Vanilla cardstock, covered with Black embossing powder and melted with the Heat Tool.  The embossed owl images were punched with the Owl Builder punch and Basic Rhinestones were added to the eyes of one of the owls.  The shiny-eyed owl was adhered to the center of the frame using SNAIL.

The spider web image, from the Wicked Cool stamp set, was stamped a couple of times on Very Vanilla cardstock using More Mustard ink.  The "Spooky" image, also from the Wicked Cool stamp set, was stamped over the spider webs using Early Espresso ink.  The cardstock was inserted into the paper slot of the Medium Oval punch, centering the "Spooky" in the punch window, then punching the oval.  The edges of the oval were sponged with Cajun Craze ink.  A Scallop Oval was punched from Cajun Craze cardstock and the edges sponged with Cajun Craze ink.  The "Spooky" was adhered to the center of the scallop oval with SNAIL and adhered near the right edge of the Well Worn Designer Series Paper using Stampin' Dimensionals.

Spooky_Owl_Inside
(click on card to see larger image)

The inside of the card was lined with a piece of Very Vanilla cardstock with a strip of Well Worn Designer Series Paper adhered along the bottom edge of the liner.  (The edges of the cardstock and the strip of Designer Series paper were sponged with Cajun Craze ink.)  The spider web image was stamped repeatedly across the top third of the liner and the "have a WICKED halloween" image, from the Wicked Cool stamp set, was stamped near the upper center of the liner using Early Espresso ink.  The second embossed owl was adhered just above the Well Worn Designer Series Paper.

Spooky_Owl_Envelope
(click on envelope to see larger image)

The spider web image was stamped repeatedly at the lower left front of the Medium Very Vanilla Envelope.  The "Spooky" image was stamped over the spider webs using Early Espresso ink.

I had a great time at Stampcation and will be showing you more from that event very soon.

Robertssiggy

Stamps:  Frame It, Warmest of Wishes, Wicked Cool; Inks:  Cajun Craze, Early Espresso, More Mustard, Versamark; Cardstock:  Cajun Craze, Early Espresso, More Mustard, Very Vanilla; Designer Series Paper:  Well Worn; Embellishments:  Basic Rhinestones; Adhesives:  SNAIL, Stampin' Dimensionals; Tools:  Paper Cutter/Scorer, Paper Snips, Bone Folder, Sponge, Scallop Oval punch, Medium Oval punch, Owl Builder punch, Embossing Buddy, Black Embossing Powder, Heat Tool, Big Shot w/Standard Cutting Plates, Multi-Purpose Platform, Perfect Details Texturz Plate, Texturz Impressions Pad, Texturz Silicone Rubber mat; Other:  Medium Very Vanilla Envelope