Sunday, September 20, 2015

3D Landscape Card

Need to give my hubby props. I showed him the card that I came up with (at least, I hadn't seen it before so if you came up with a similar card- great minds my friend!) and it needed a name. So he named it a 3D Landscape card.
I likes it :D

 So I used the new Sleigh Ride Edgelits and Jingle all the Way stamp set available in the new Stampin' Up! Occasions Mini Catalogue. I have to say, the idea is INGENIOUS! I am in love! So much versatility.
Anyways, it's 3 layers, though I am sure you can make more. Being as I have NO CLUE how to do a video, y'all are going to have to bear with me and my multitude of photos. (also- playing around with my light box and settings so some pics will look different as I am trying to find the 'best' way).
 So Step 1. you'll want some layered thinlit dies. You could use the same size, but using different layering sizes, you can create more depth. The world's your oyster- whatever works!
I used some retired label dies I have- they are like potato chips for sure- can't just have one!
You can also use a variety of colors- either go monochromatic, or mix it up.

 So I cut 3 pieces of cardstock at 4 1/4 x 5 1/2. The top layer uses the largest die. So after cutting that in the centre (you could even cut them off centre for a unique outlook.) To make sure they are centred, I placed the already cut piece on top of the next as a sort of 'template'. You can do that off centre as well- just moving your cardstock over.

The I used the Sleigh Ride Edgelits. Thing is, they don't really work for this type of card as-is, BUT after a happy accident, I cut another set as a replacement but decided to work with both.
 Awe :( I cut a house off. So I just trimmed it off. How it got trimmed off was my lining up of the die. If you look at the next 2 photos, you'll notice that the die for the middle panel of the card is too far to one side for it to work. I wanted the houses more centred. So I cut it far on the one side, and tried to line up the die with the cut on the other side and cut it out again so it would work for my card. When I cut the 2nd set of houses out, I decided to glue them and create a bit more of a scene.
 So you can see the 2 different cut outs and then I just adhered the small one under the larger one. You could go ahead and ink the edges to create dimension. I dabbed it with some Whisper White Ink and then put some Dazzling Details on a sponge and dabbed it over top. You can't really see the 'glitter' effect, but it's there!

 This is the 2nd panel all finished. You can't really see- but I stamped some snowflakes in Whisper White and embossed with Irredecant Ice Embossing Powder. I also stamped very lightly in Marina Mist (Soft Sky was just too light). I'd suggest a wee bit darker color to make it 'pop'.

So once I played around and created the other 2 layers, setting them on the others to make sure that it was the visual appeal that I wanted. The top is also stamped with the same snowflakes from Last Year's Endless Wishes stamp set. I added my sentiment from Jingle all the way after I cut out the die from the Edgelits. You can't see it, but I dabbed Dazzling Details on the bottom part to look like 'snow' and added some old Soft Sky ribbon I had.

Once all 3 panels are done, you'll want 2 pieces of 4 1/4x2 1/2 cardstock. Score at 1/2 inch intervals 4 times (adding more width and scorelines if you've made more than 3 panels). It's blurry, but you can kind of see it on my Stampin' Score Board.

You then mountain/valley fold the small pieces. This is the tricky part, play around to make sure that the panels will be adhered to the correct edges so there is a bit of a gap between each panel. If you adhere them incorrectly, then the panels are just one on top of another and you lose the effect. When I look at my card from the side, it looks like a "W" with an extra flap. The idea is you want to put your sticky strip on the BACK of each panel (start with one side, don't try to adhere each panel to both accordian sides at once).
 You can see here that the adhesive is on the back of the panel. If you put the adhesive on the back of the top panel and adhere it to first valley fold of the accordian flap, skip the mountain, adhere the 2nd panel from the back to the 2nd valley fold and carry on, you should have the desired effect.
 As with anything handmade, there can  be 'oopses' in measurements. As I squished my card, you can see that there is a bit of 'excess' on the right hand side. So trim it off right? So I have to hold the card closed, trim the excess, and pinch the flaps from the left side so I can trim as closely as possible.
I don't have 3 hands.

VOILA! Yay paper clip! Lol. That was a handy-dandy way to close it so I can trim the edges!
What I did next is just the same thing as the left side. I adhered the accordian panel on the back of each panel, on the valley of the accordian panel. I did the top panel first, leaving the other panels 'open' so it was easier to adhere. Do this carefully, especially if using sticky strip as that stuff STICKS. You could just use repositionable adhesive, but I would worry about the panels eventually coming off.

So here is the finished product! The final panel doesn't need to be too fancy as it's 'far in the back' but definitely add some dimension with an edgelit or die cuts.

So much fun to make! I have a couple other examples using non-SU! items- but same idea :)
 Now that SU! is working on their Blendabilities (C'MON SU!) lol I did not get any replacement because they can be costly, but I did grab some Crayola's after seeing a really cool tutorial on how to blend with Colored Pencils. So SO cool.  So the stamps aren't SU! but the dies and paper are :) I created my own flowers with the Petite Petal punch, layering it and using Gold Dazzling Details and mini brads. The single layered flowers are just embossed with versa-mark and Irredecent Ice powder. The top princess one used
another retired Label Die from SU! and if you look closely, you can see that they are listing to the left. I put the princess on the front panel, Prince Charming on the 2nd and the castle on the last. I was channeling Aurora and Prince Phillip. I love how it turned out. When the Princess Set came with a single braided princess and a double braided princess, I IMMEDIATELY thought of Ana and Elsa. I used last year's retired Snow Flake Dies and used them and the Floral Frames Collect for Ana's 'flower' centre panel.

So there you can see it's pretty versatile and so much fun.

I hope you enjoyed and have fun with your own creations!


Tuesday, September 8, 2015

Back in the Saddle

Welcome back everyone! I (again) am hoping that this is the start of a new and improved Crafter's Eden. Full time work is hard, but I have ignored my passions for crafting and writing for far too long. That, friends, is my advice. Don't starve your passions. I saw a great 'meme' on Facebook the other day- ignoring your passion is a slow suicide. Noting that, my hubby is on board and 'riding my tushie' to make sure I make time to craft and write. And, I have never shared how much I enjoyed my passions with my husband before and how far I really wanted to take them. And to have his support and encouragement just lights that fire even hotter. So this past week (on staycation- WOO HOO!) I have placed a not-so-pre-order for Stampin' Up! holiday goodies, stocked up on paper, created a light box (seriously, where WAS this thing the whole time?- and for 3 bucks!), and set goals and started crafting again.
I feel great :) It'll be hard once I go back to work tomorrow, but with Chris by my side and my goal list in hand- I know I can do this.
So first thing first- I created this bad boy after doing quite a bit of research on how to take better pics of my cards. It's hard- especially trying to sell my cards online- to showcase the amount of detail or work that goes into them. I find myself saying "Oh they look better in person" to people. A lot.
Etsy was a great resource, but for the most part they called for natural light. GREAT! But I live in a trailer and get very little natural light. Plus, very soon, the sun will be limited up here in the great white North so I am doomed with my florescent kitchen light? Back to the drawing board!
So I, in my pintrest and Google hazed state, found something called a light box.
Great. I really REALLY don't want to spend another small fortune on my business.
Oh pintrest. I really do love you.
A few other snazzy folks had created one with just a few odds and ends around the house. I don't remember which blogs were most helpful (like I said- haze) but the jist of it all was cardboard box, white tissue paper and poster board - oh and tape! All of which are found at my local Dollar Store.
That plus borrowing my daughter's desk lamp and using my own floor lamp my camera, plus a decent software program, created high quality photos for said blog and better advertising for my business to do some selling.
Check this space out! So you can see the box and my daughter's desk lamp propped up on some boxes to give it more height so I can have the light come down from the top. I still need to play around with lighting and my editing software, a photographer I ain't,  but so far it's been awesome.

Check out the difference: The first photo is how I used to take photos. (usually I'd drape a sheet on a chair- but this time I used a cleared spot on my desk- but still same idea. Flash on a white background with my phone camera):
I had  no idea how to utilize my software - so I didn't edit any of my photos other than cropping them if needed and rotating them. So it's not bad. Show cases what the card looks like- but...dulls it. You can't really see the glitter or the color. This was the 'old' way.

So now the photo with the 2 corsets (tutorial to come!) is in the light box with my camera flash off and the exposure value at the highest level (2 from 0- I have no idea what the means lol) but it brought in more light and according to the photo blogs, it's easier to fix that way. Again, this is me just learning. There is an autofix feature on my soft ware, so let's put that to good use!

So here it is! Cropped, watermarked, and autofixed. I am not sure if it's 'perfect', but I am happy with it :) I find the colors more vibrant and just looking 'side by side' the first photo looks 'passport quality' and I like to think the last one is more 'magazine quality'.
I know I have a lot to learn and will continue to hone and play around - I want to get better color quality so they look truer to Stampin' Up!'s color pallet.

So that's all that's new with me here. Excited to carry on, use my light box and new goodies and dive right back in with both feet.

Thanks for stopping by!