March 27, 2009

Unity Stamps World Record Inspirational Blog Hop

"Trust in the LORD with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths." Proverbs 3:5-6

Hello all! What a day today is. It's the world record inspirational blog hop hosted by Unity Stamp Co. If you are just checking in here first and want to hop around the hop, please start back at Unity's Blog to find the very beginning. You won't want to miss the wonderful inspirations all through the hop.

The first card I have for you features a scripture that I really like, and helps me through those very trying moments of life. The sentiment is from the Something within set from Unity. The background flower is from the grab bag and the pieced flowers are from the February kit of the Month. The printed papers are Stampin' Up papers from the Sale a Bration campaign. For the flowers, I stamped the flowers that are actually part of a journaling stamp four times and then cut them out and layered them on top of each other. The brads in the middle are some I had in my stash. The metal flower embellishments are from Stampin' Up! For the paper ribbon I created, I used my Stampin' Up! eyelet border punch and my scallop edge border punch. The corners are rounded on the lower edge of the front of the card. The layers in the middle were cut using my Nesties (how did I ever live without these things!! LOL).

The next card uses stamps from the March kit of the month and little buggers. It was a very simple card, but fun to make. In the background on the blue paper, I stamped with bleach the flower from the little buggers set. The topiary was stamped and colored with blender pens and then cut out and mounted on with dimensionals. The main image was stamped and colored with markers and then layered on scraps of the blue background and a piece of SU sale a bration paper and then mounted on with dimensionals. Then I used the photo corner punch to punch out the larger corner from more scraps from the blue background to layer underneath the main image so it doesn't get lost in the card base. The DSP behind this is from the sale a bration papers from SU as well. The felt ribbons are from Creative Imaginations. I used the three brads to add a bit of interest here and to help hold on the felt ribbon.

This card was a color challenge posted on Thursday's Unity blog hop as a challenge. The idea was to use purple, black and white. I already had these flowers bleach stamped into perfect plum so I ran with them and here's what I came up with. The color combo is stunning and I'm not at all a purple person. It's an okay color, but it's not one I tend to use much. So this was a bit of a challenge for me for that reason. The white strip along the bottom was a scrap piece from a cuttlebug embossed piece I used on something else. The sentiment is actually from SU in the Fresh Cuts set, but it went perfectly with this.

Then finally, this card was a lot of fun to make, and a bit of a challenge for me. It was also a challenge on Thursday's Unity Blog hop to make a spring-themed card. The bird is from Unity and the set is called Birds of a Feather. It's a beautiful set and is so elegant. The white paper behind it is embossed with the Cuttlebug and then sponged around the edges to make it pop out a little more. The background papers are SU! They are the new designer series cardstock papers called Parisian Breeze. For the bird, I stamped it on watercolor paper and then added a wash to the bird so it would look soft and smooth. Then I took the aqua painter and really wet the edges of the paper. After that I sponged them with baja breeze ink so it would be very soft and not distressed looking. The hardware is SU's silver hodgebodge. The sentiment is from the Best Yet set by Stampin' Up!

These last two card were done earlier in the week, but I didn't have time to post until now. I hope you enjoyed looking at these and that you found some inspiration. Thanks for taking the time to stop and look around here on my blog. Before you go, please be sure to leave feedback. I love feedback, whether it be favorable or something I could do better, but please be kind and constructive. Thanks! Now, moving along in the hop, please check out Shannon's blog for some more stamping inspiration.



March 19, 2009

Easter--Unity style

Here's another one for you. It uses all Unity Stamps and is quite a lot of fun. I kinda had a hard time making it all flow, though, and I'm still not certain it does. It may, however, grow on me like some of the others I didn't like have done. It's very different from my normal style and I think that may be what is bothering me about it. It's a combination challenge. I used the sketch for this week over at Splitcoast and combined it with a Unity challenge to use only spring colors. I stuck with all Unity stamps for this one, and they are out of the February kit of the month. The eggs are done by spraying a piece of paper with water and then sponging in colors until you get the effect you want. Once the paper was dry, I stamped the eggs on and then colored the flowers with my SU markers. The flowers on the bottom of the paper are stamped using a spectrum pad. I had to vary the sketch slightly to get the stamps and all to flow together correctly.



A patriotic thanks

This card is for Operation Quiet Comfort, a non-profit organization that handles the needs of soldiers that have been wounded in the line of duty. One of their recent requests has been for more thank you cards with written and signed messages inside. So, I decided to make several of these up to have friends and family sign and return to OQC. This is the firs, but I will get more done. This was also a sketch challenge for this week at Splitcoast. A pretty fun sketch that can make good use of scraps. I used a beautiful eagle stamp from Coronado Islands and a lady liberty stamp, but I can't remember where her stamp came from. The eagle was stamped first and then masked for the background stamp. Then I inked up the background with some markers and stamped it off once and then stamped it on the eagle. There was a bit of a blank spot where the background didn't get a good stamp, so I filled it with the word Freedom. then I sponged the edges of the focal point with night of navy ink. Photo corner punches tie it all together.



March 17, 2009

Thinking of you...

Okay, I got some new stamp sets out of the new catalog and the mini and unity finally. :D So, I used some of them to make this beauty. This is also a mojo monday challenge. If you every want to do these, the link is in the column on the left. They are a lot of fun, and I love to do them! For this card, I used the Soft Summer set out of the upcoming Stampin' Up mini, and Friends 24-7 out of the new catalog. These two sets are just beautiful. The brocade pattern out of the Friends 24-7 set makes absolutely beautiful background papers. It's a little tricky, though, and requires a stamp a majig. Especially for people like me who always end up mounting their stamps crooked. LOL. The black paper is stamped and embossed using the Tea Time Toile background stamp from Unity. I love this stamp, and it's one of the most beautiful backgrounds I've seen. The Pink strip on top is stamped with the dogwoods out of the Soft Summer set and then I used the poppin' pastels technique I learned recently to give them some softness. On the white strip I stamped a sentiment I have in my collection of "stamps I bought on clearance". So I can't really tell you who makes it.



March 12, 2009

A card making frenzy!!

Okay, I've been a little busy lately making cards. It just seems like the creative juices are flowing and I can't seem to stop them. LOL. I think they are slowing down, though. Anyway, I have a few more cards for you that I made yesterday. Some are challenges and some are not.

First off is a re-do of a challenge where I apparently forgot to read the directions. that frog card featured below was the challenge, but I forgot to use the colors green galore, brocade blue and pale plum. So here is the re-do.

I changed up the layout some with the re-do to accomodate the color requirements. These colors are a bit more difficult to work with and took a lot of playing around with before I found a comfortable layout with them. I honestly think this is a better card than the first time around.

Here's the inside. I used a circle nestie as a stencil for where the sentiment would go. There are no flies on this card, but that's only because I was simply too lazy to get up and go dig out the set where the flies are. If you saw where my stamps are, you would understand completely. LOL. It turned out pretty cute, if I do say so myself.

Next up--the butterflies. These three beautiful butterflies are from a retired SU set called Wonderful Wings. I made these late last night for three dear friends who were very supportive after my Grandmother passed away. Each butterfly is unique.

The first one is a monarch butterfly, the only one I actually know the name of by they way. I stamped it with brown Staz-On on watercolor paper that was cut with the top note die cut and then watercolored over it using markers and an aquapainter. I love my aquapainters. Then when the butterfly dried, I used the bigger aquapainter and got the background really wet and then sponged several colors of inks in the background. The butterfly is then layered on top of a piece of very vanilla paper that has been cuttlebugged. The sentiment here is from warm words and is scraps from the earlier challenge this week of using the hot card technique. It's then put under the silver hodge podge hardware and attached with some retired SU ribbon.

The second butterfly is a beautiful brilliant blue butterfly. I love blue butterflies as much as a monarch, but have never seen a real blue one in person. This one is done in the same manner as the monarch. I stamped it with brown Staz-On on watercolor paper that was cut with the top note die cutand then watercolored over it using markers and an aquapainter. I love my aquapainters. Then when the butterfly dried, I used the bigger aquapainter and got the background really wet and then sponged several colors of inks in the background. The sentiment here is from warm words and is scraps from the earlier challenge this week of using the hot card technique. It's then put under the silver hodge podge hardware and attached with some retired SU ribbon.

This butterfly is a little different from the others, but it's still pretty in its own way. I cut apart the die cut here for a window effect, but overall it is done the exact same way as the other two above.

Next is an Inspired By Nature card that I started working on several weeks ago. I just never got around to assembling it. The flowers were colored on the stamp and then stamped on top of the grass. The grass was stamped first using Sahara Sand ink. The butterfly was stamped with night of navy and versamark ink then embossed with clear embossing powder. It was attached to the card panel with dimensionals. There is no sentiment on the card, I wanted the image to stand on its own and just serve as a blank inside note card.

This card was the last the three March Wish RAK monthly card contest cards. It was a bit more difficult than it looks on the surface. I had a hard time getting the right colors and sentiments together to make the card all flow together. The Raspberry Tart paper in the background can stand on its own so it made a big difference in the overall card. I layered rose red and a fairly neutral paper on top of that stamped with the live like you mean it set images. I then layered flowers and attached a clear rhinestone brad to the middle of them.

This card is almost totally stamp free! A new concept for me. It's also very simple. Yet another new concept for me. LOL. No really, just ask those who know me. :D

The sketch came from Taylored Expressions challenge. I had this old DSP laying around and a scrap of some new DSP so I just punched it and scraps of coordinating colors and voila. Here we are.

March 11, 2009

Precious in His sight...

Here is another card for the wish RAK monthly card contest. This one is a new technique to me, but I love the effect of it! The technique is called Hot Card and the link to the website where I got the instructions is here: I didn't have any patterned tissue paper I wanted to use so I stamped this background stamp from Unity called Tea Time Toile. The verse was an image I received through Wish RAK. I wanted the background to be able to stand on its own. So I layered paper behind it only as an accent. The verse fit just perfectly in the lower corner. On the sides of the verse, I used some clear dew drops I had and attached them with Crystal Effects. Kind of like tears, huh? I really love the softness of this card and it's one of my all-time favorites so far.

I toadally love you!

Here's a card for the Wish RAK March monthly challenge. The challenge was to make a card using a frog somewhere on it. Here's my submission.

The frogs and the speech bubbles were received from Wish RAK. I saw on someone's blog recently (sorry I can't remember whose) a card that was folded like this and I thought it was adorable. It uses the same amount of paper as a regular sized card, so I decided to give it a try. I think it's a fun departure from the traditional fold of a card. I used my nesties to cut all the circles out. The frogs are watercolored with markers and a blender pen then covered with crystal effects for some added dimension.

The inside of the card is simple since the front opens to be seen on the inside. I found the flies in an old retired SU set Noah and Co. Who can have frogs without flies?! LOL The designer series paper is some retired paper I had around the house and the circles were perfect to go with this since the main image is all circles too.

March 09, 2009

I love you, Grandma.

Well, it's been a sad weekend around here. Sorry to say, but it's true. Tomorrow we will bury my Grandma--less than two years after my Grandpa. She has been sick for a very long time, and we all knew it was coming, but it's still very hard to say goodbye to someone you love so much. Now that both of my Grandparents (I only knew one set of them) are gone, it's like having to figure out how to start a new chapter in my life. When they were living, I called at least once a week and often times more than that. They brought me a lot of joy and I have a great amount of respect and love for both of them.

This card is for you, Grandma. Sorry I didn't get to give it to you in person, but I had watercolored this morning glory a while back to put on a Mother's Day card for you. So, now's as good a time as any, I guess, to give it to you. I know how much you loved morning glories. You used to have some in your back yard that looked just like these. And yes, I know your love of pink so I put as much as I could in here. The pearls are for you, too. The eyelet border is in memory of my favorite Easter dress you made for me with the white eyelet trim.

Goodbye, Grandma. I love you and miss you very much. Your unconditional love toward me all these years will always be remembered and returned. So until we meet again some day, rest in peace with our Lord and Saviour and with Grandpa by your side. Love you!!! :(

March 04, 2009

Curious little Monkey

Curious George's Birthday card

This little card is for a friend of ours little boy. He adores Curious George. So I went online and did a search for Curious George coloring pages. I came across this awesome website with tons of Curious George pages that are the new Curious George.

After I downloaded this page, I opened it in a photo editing software and reduced the size to fit on a card front. Then I printed it on card stock and colored away with my wonderful SU markers. Thanks, dear friend, for those beautiful markers! The clouds I drew freehand and cut them out and outlined with a bashful blue marker. The background is a piece of Almost Amethyst, I believe, and it was sponged over with ballet blue classic ink and whisper white craft ink. The detail picture shows that. It really made it look like a sky and helped tone down the contrast with the colors. I used my gel pen to write in happy birthday and just add highlights to George and his plane.

On the inside of the card, I stamped a monkey out of the adorable, but retired, Monkey Business set and added a happy birthday banner across the top. All in all, this was a fun card to do. It may only last 30 seconds in the hands of a two year old, but I had fun doing it and have pictures of it anyway. LOL. It got the seal of approval from the three year old, so I figure it's a winner. :D

March 02, 2009

Mojo Monday sketch challenge!

Mojo Monday!!

I love the sketch challenges over at mojo Monday and today's was no different. This was, however, the first time I've ever gotten to do one of them. You can see the original sketch over on their blog. This is my interpretation. I used some springy colors since it's been so cold the last few days, and I was ready for some more signs of spring. This adorable bee is from Unity Stamps in the Little Buggers set. That whole set is adorable. The paper is cardstock and retired designer paper from Stampin' Up. The ribbon is also from stampin up--some retired, some current. The gingham brads are just some random brads that I had on hand. No idea where they came from. I used my SU eyelet punch on some retired designer series paper for the bottom edge. The flower image stamped on the strip of paper behind the bee is also from the Unity set Little Buggers. Any suggestions for improvement? I like it the way it is, but I'm always open to improvement.