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Tuesday, July 18, 2017

A Little Late

What's the age old phrase? Better late than never?
I have been so busy with work and as much as I love being busy, one of the downsides is being exahusted when I come home.
I miss writing. I miss creating. Not to mention having the kids all home all day long and the unexpected heat wave is just draining this old gals juices.
I know it'll be better come fall. I am not a summer girl (WHAT?). It's true. Our winters up here are so long and cold and bitter that despite feeling like a reprieve, summer is usually the exact oposite.
Give me spring or fall any day :)
To bad where I live we only get a few weeks of each :S lol
So as school drew to a close I actually went for it this year (a bit of a late start) and did teacher thank you gifts!
Being as there was only 2 weeks left of school when I decided to get some items going in my little boutique I just went small. I had a few 5x7 frames that I converted into dry erase message boards. I think they may be a bit small for that, plus it's hard to tell what they are.
Along with that, I found a few ideas of people creating desk calendars using the easel card technique. I thought that was brilliant so I decided to give it a go myself.
Here is what I came up with:

 These were so much fun and really quite easy to create once I got my mojo going.

Again I am totally in love with Colorful Seasons stamp set by Stampin' Up! That font *sigh*. Oh that font!
Plus I used the Berry Burst and Lemon Lime twist from the new In Color sets and they just punched it up in a fun and playful way.

 The next set I used the Berry Burst with Crumb Cake and Blushing Bride with the lovely cherry blossom stamps and dies in the Colorful Seasons set.
So what I have done is used some washi tape to punch up some mini binder clips which holds the calendar in place. The calendar is on the top part of the card and to make it more dynamic I created a cover for the calendar with coordinating images. The calendar pages were matted on cardstock to give it some strength and then bundled together with the binder clip which 'hangs' on a brad. The bottom is a piece of 3x6.5 cardstock that I scored at 3 and 3.5 to create a cover for 3x3 post it notes. So when it's in easel form, a person can scribble a note in the pad and see the date and it's just a nice little gift. The finished product is 5x5.


The next couple I have verred away from my Stampin' Up! sets and used the fun Be a Unicorn stamp and die set from The Greeting Farm. And what is a unicorn with out some sparkle? I added Stickles to the hair to make it shimmer and then based some of my mats with silver glimmer paper.




I used my mini daisy punch from EK Success and layered the buds and topped them off with a pearl coloredY18 copic.
My color scheme to keep with unicorn bubble gum rainbow is Pool Party, Sweet Sugarplum and Pretty in Pink.

I know I will be making these again for my shows this Christmas. Not only where they really quick and a lot of fun, but I think they'll be a huge hit for Christmas gifts!


So that's it for me for now, I hope you enjoyed!

~Brandie~

Tuesday, June 13, 2017

Annual Catalogue

Wow what a month! Wanted to blog more often and I have no idea what happened to May but it's gone and now I'm gearling up for end of school and the Stampin' Up! new annual catalogue.
Can I just say I am in love with some of the new stuff? Like WOW guys- way to out do yourself!
So I am adoring the new In Colors. Lemon Lime Twist? uh- yes please! I do love my Stampin' Up, but it IS about time that they had a bold fun green. Before that, my Old Olive and Pear Pizzazz were good- but this Lemon Lime Twist is so perfect for some of my more playful creations.
The other colors accent it perfectly and I will defintely be highlighting them on projects to come. I haven't used them together, but I ordered a pack of Berry Burst, Lemon Lime Twist and Smokey Slate (because I was out of Smokey Slate) and holding them together once the order came in gave me a 'huh?' moment with the creative gears spinning in my little ol' head.
And Color Theory? Oh don't even get me started! Colorful Seasons stamp set (with the dies, obviously) has got to be, hands down, one of the coolest sets I have seen in a long time. I couldn't wait to dig in. I love snowflakes and cherry blossoms and leaves and this set is PERFECT! I thought the beach chairs were kinds wuh-wuh- until Pinterest showed me other wise. And the Sentiments with this set? THE SENTIMENTS?! I love girly swirly matching fonts and *sigh* yes. yes SU! you have hit it out of the park.
So I was dealing with illness and kids and work work work before I could play.
And play I did :) I was inspired by the natural element of the stamp set so I decided to get my watercolor (ish) on and do the ink splatter? technique. Coloring on clean stamp blocks and spraying with my Stampin' Spritzers to create a fun watercolor background. I went a bit background crazy and have a stack here just waiting to become the background of new cards, but here is what I came up with for a few of them:
 The neat thing with creating a watercolor background is you can either blend matching colors (or colors that accent each other on the color wheel) and make something that is eye catching and appealing. Or, what I had done here, is create 'sand' using Sahara Sand and Crumb cake and built up to a horizon with Soft Sky, Pool Party, and Marina Mist. I adored it and figured it gave that beach in the background feel. Plus, my good old Woodgrain Background stamp. MAN that thing gets a lot of play. What can I say? It's pretty much perfect for a lot of different stamp styles :)
That font off to the side? PERFECT! Sheer ribbon and some old Soft Sky ribbon intwined finished it off.
To get that fun torn edge, my own technique is to dip the edge of the cardstock (on the layers beneath the main layer) and then fray them with the edge of my scissors. Then I let it dry a bit before sanding and curling here and there.



This beauty was created by the fabulous branches and blossoms and, again, LOVE IT. The Melon Mambo, Tangerine Tango and Flirty Flamigo ink mashed together blended into what I interpret as a beautiful firey sunset.
Because I use watercolor paper for the watercolor technique (we don't want to wreak that precious Whisper White!) I created a frame for the 'painting' by cutting the mat the same size as my watercolor paper, and then trimming the inside to 1/4 of an inch all the way around. You could wet and tear the edges to give it more dimentions. I just smooshed my ink pad on it.

So there you go! See what happens when I'm gone too long? I get wordy and start gushing over new items :P
I hope you enjoyed- happy stamping!

~Brandie~

Friday, April 28, 2017

Last Ones....

I promise.
At least for a while ;)

I went on a kick and made a bunch of those Step Panel Cards.
I also dusted off the Greeting Farm's "Magical Bean" s kit (and thus putting my Hatters away for a little while). I added this to the Mini Faries available through the greeting farm and created these whimsical cards:

 I got to do the background sponging which is such an effective technique. I sponged in Soft Sky and Pool Party. Instead of die cutting a cloud shape I just winged it.
Then I went to my Tried and True Stampin' Up! Stamp sets and used my Thoughts and Prayers set for the hanging vines, Petite Petals for the watercolor-esque petals and then a fun Birthday banner sentiment from an old Sale a Bration set.
 The tiny buds are brought to you by a retired set Itty Bitty Buds and the coordinating punch set.

I am enamoured with the color combo here of Crumb Cake, Sweet Sugarplum and Blushing Bride. (please please please bring Sweet Sugarplum back when you re-vamp the color families Stampin' Up!!!)
 I used the exact template for this Fairy Birthday Card, but switched up the colors a bit. I love Pink and Green so
I paired Pink Pirouette with Pear Pizzazz.
Shhh but there is an even BETTER  BRIGHTER AND BOLDER green coming down the pipes ;) Can't wait to play with that!
The Smokey Slate I paired these colors with gives a good base to make this a wee bit more sparkley with some Fairy Glitter (or- good old fashioned Stickles or Dazzling Details). I also used some Silver embossing powder for the sentiment on the back. I tried it with the Banner on the front, but it didn't read well so I just used Smokey Slate ink for that. The buds on this card is brought to you by Forget Me Not by Papertrey Ink.

Well I hope you enjoyed! Next time I'll be showcasing a different technique, promise!

Have a great day,
~Brandie~

Thursday, April 20, 2017

After The Break

Wow! I had wanted to blog so much more and make some fun Easter things and be all springy on here.
Then I got sick.
Then it snowed and was dank and dark. Very depressing.
Then my husband was sick and I was taking up the lion's share.
Now over a week later and much chaos I have been able to have some free time to get back into the social media aspect of my business. Not to say I haven't been creating ;)
Well. Not as much as I would have liked...
I don't know if you've noticed, but I am a bit of a girly girl. That trancends into my clothing, my likes and even into my hobbies. I don't even have very many 'boy' items. And 'manly' things? forget about it! Though I am working towards more boy stuff :) Dragons and superheroes and dinosaurs and astronauts- oh yessss. I have found items that I MUST have! Soon enough ;) Mother's day is close at hand :D
Until then, I have a few tools in my collection to create some less pink-frilly-glittery greeting cards (not that they have to be just for boys!) If you remember my love for Dawn's Step Panel card-  I went a little bit.... gung ho.
 These Mini Remix Boys from The Greeting Farm are little and cute and perfect for simple masculine cards.
To augment the boys I used a variety of stamp sets from Stampin' Up! including, Banner Blast (with coordinating Bitty Banner punch), Water Color Words, Gorgeous Grunge and Hardwood background stamp.
I used the Brick Wall embossing folder on some Smokey Slate, brushed with more Smokey Slate ink and then AFTER it was embossed, I stamped the Star and Birthday sentiment from the Watercolor Words to make it look like spray paint. Adding that to the Gorgeous Grunge splatters made it look like a Graffit Wall.

I grabbed a stack of gift stamp from one of my other sets and used various banners to give it a birthday party feel.
My color pallet was Daper Denim, Old Olive, Smokey Slate and Crumb Cake.

Being as the cards don't open, I like using the back of the card to carry on and have more space to not only decorate but, in theory, have a place to write a sentiment (though on this card, I think that's not going to happen :) oops!

This showcases the Graffit art a lot more prominently. I added bits of washi tape for dimension, then another one of our fun Boy Remix Boys and his pal puppy on a skateboard.

I'll be honest, it was hard to get started as I am so used to floral and glitter and swirls, but as it came together I was really happy with the outcome.

I hope it inspired you to think outside your own personal creative boxes.

~Brandie~

Sunday, April 9, 2017

Party Shakers

Happy Sunday!
So as I mentioned in my last post, I have a customer who really likes the Hatters from The Greeting Farm and put in an order for a few different cards using various hatters characters. You've seen the Step Panel card that I made last time (link to Dawn's Stamping Thoughts and the tutorial on my previous post). This time I wanted to do something different than the step panel and easle cards that I've been really enjoying and so easy to do.
Time to step out of the box :)
I tried my hand at a couple of shaker cards- they can be a bit time consuming and really hard (for me anyways) to think of a concept for a card that wasn't too busy or lame. Everyone else I saw that made them seemed to have no problem with creative block. I just couldn't figure it out.
I guess it was only a matter (Hatter!) of time.
 This is Stephie. I made a window card with Stampin' Up!'s Window Sheets, Crumb Cake, Old Olive and Marina Mist card stock. I layered an Old Olive Scalloped square with some Marina Mist and cut right through the front of the card so it peeked to the sentiment on the inside.
 It creates a really neat dimmensional feel. I used the banner stamp and die from the Celebrate Today stamp set from SU! I layered them over the window, as well as stamped and embossed a set on the sentiment underneath, giving it a 3D effect. I used the Foam Adhesive strips from SU! as well sandwiched between 2 sets of window sheets to complete the window. I grabbed some silver stars that I had lying around for the shaker inserts.

 Here's the card layed flat and closed so you can see the fun silver stars dancing in the window.
I added layered petals from various mini bud punches and colored rhinestones with a blue copic that worked well with the Marina Mist color.
I used the Layered labels from SU! and the Endless Birthday Wishes set from SU! as well for the sentiment.

This here is Amy from the Hatters Collection. Using the same type of idea to create a 'through' window to the inside of the card. I honestly like the idea and think it can be a lot of fun :)

The color pallet for this card is Smokey Slate, Rich Razzleberry and Bermuda Bay.  I used the Endless Thanks from SU! for the sentiments (retired- sadly enough). To finish it off, I was able to use some the glitter paper I received from this past Sale-A-Bration. I really hope they bring it back because, hello-GLITTER :)

That's it for me- enjoy the rest of  your Sunday.

~Brandie~

Thursday, April 6, 2017

Standing Hatters

Hello!
Ever since I made those little bitty Leprechauns for my friend, she went and told HER friend who has become enamoured with the Hatter Collection from the Greeting Farm. Needless to say, that has spurned me into creating cards for this new customer featuring said Hatter cuties.

 This is Rosemary from the Hatters collection. I used Marina Mist, Pear Pizzazz, and Sweet Sugarplum as my color pallet. This was so much fun and I loved how it worked out. The flower dies and stamps are from Papertrey Ink's Forget-me-Not set and they layered wonderfully with Stampin' Up!'s Thoughts and Prayers stamp set. I added some glitter tape to finish it all off :)
 Here's the back all layered. You don't necessarily need to do a back side, but being as this type of card doesn't open up, you don't have an inside to work with. Besides, I myself love how it looks.
 This here is Carisa from the Hatter's set. The was Pink and Yellow so I used Melon Mambo, So Saffron and Pink Pirouette. I used Stampin' Up!'s Flower Patch stamps and dies- love how they layer with either the dies or using the 2 step stamping technique. I finished it off with SU!s Wonderful Mother and First Sight stamps.
And the backside of this one. I love the whole Pink Lemonade feel. The bright pink glitter tape and the copic colored pearl centers are great finishing pieces.

The card design is CASED from Dawn's Stampin' Thoughts blog. She calls it a Step Panel Card and I am seriously obsessed. I enjoy making these SO much. I have done this layout twice in my Stampers Groups.
The tutorial to the card can be found at Dawn's blog here:

https://dawnsstampingthoughts.net/2015/04/stampin-up-grand-vacation-2015-hawaii-blog-hop.html

So many options and ideas for this type of card. LOVE IT! Thanks for creating it Dawn :)

And thank YOU for stopping by!

~Brandie~

Wednesday, March 29, 2017

Shadow Box Mania

Hello!
I absolutely adore 3D cards. They are beautiful and intricate. Lovely layered roses and ribbons and leaves. The downside is mailing these mamma jammas. Heck, mailing aside, just putting them up on display can be a recipe for damage and disaster. You want to preserve them, especially after all the work you put into making them.
At least, that was my thought process in my following creations.
What if, after putting all that work into a card (or, you know, whatever) you have a pretty way to not only display them, but preserve them? I looked at shadowboxes, and even the ones from Michaels that you decorate and paint yourself seem to be quite pricey.
So....how hard WOULD it be to try to create one myself?
First I thought I could use box lids- but then I figured, we'd be stuck with the box bottoms.
And what am I gunna do with all those? Then the whole cost of an entire box just for the lid? Not very economical....
So really- how hard would it be to create one from scratch? What materials would I possibly use?
Wood and glass- too expensive (as you can tell, I'm all about cost effectiveness. Not to mention- hard to work with and more fragile than what I have in mind.)
I have made book covers and boxes before in my previous artsy fartsy endevours, so using the basic book cover technique, I applied it to creating my own shadow boxes with chipboard and acetate. Easy supplies to pick up at any craft store or even through Stampin' Up! I get their really high quality window sheets and before they discontinued them, the coaster board sheets. Oh how I loved them! Now, alas, they are gone. They were thin enough to cut with a paper trimmer but still sturdy enough to create these 3D items. But was not to be, I bought a bunch when they were on the retired list last year, but my stash has dwindled and I went back to chipboard sheets. Actual thick chipboard, not the chipboard sheets for die cutters- very thin will not work!
 I really do love these. I got to do that sponging background technique that has been my 'go to' lately. I used it to build up a layered scene, trying the telescope technique. That one is easy and fun, you just make windows with layering dies and you can add elements to make it look like a window into a scene. These shadowboxes are featuring princes and princesses from the Happily Ever After set from the Greeting Farm. The castle is from that set as well and make a wonderful backdrop on the background. Add some die cut leaves and branches, 3D roses and pearls.

One thing that I love to do, is add a mini hanging sign to personalize these little keepsakes. Great for baby names or kids' rooms or even personalized decor.





Close up!
 I die cut the letters and add them on layered pieces and add some more roses and pearls to finish it off. I love this pink damask DSP I found - absolutely perfect!


 Using some white bark DSP for these. Love the blue and teal combo. Then daisies and diamonds and Dazzling Details finish it all off with a bit of sparkle.

I hope this has inspired you to think outside (inside?) the box!

~Brandie~