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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~

Monday, March 27, 2017

My Little Ponies

Hello! Sorry for the lapse. Just not feeling very creative this past week. Trying to get back into it this week and missing just making things. Make sure, if it's your passion, to do something creative every day.

When I want to be inspired, I usually check on my old Pinterst boards (seriously- I have an addiction in my pinning! I forget some of the cool things I have on there!)
Then sometimes all it takes to be inspired to be creative is checking out your old work. As is the case here, I have my "Be A Unicorn" stamp and die set from the Greeting Farm.
I'm not ashamed to admit it, but I am a bit obsessed with the new "My Little Pony". When I saw this set, I knew I had to have it! The awesome thing is they have another couple of sets and singles of ponies, unicorns and pegasesus that would be perfect for any MLP fan!
So yes. I will be purchasing more of these ponies for my 'collection' (read: hoard, stash, ect lol)





So obviously these ponies weren't inspired by an one pony (especially if you are familiar with the mane six), but I can see how you can use this to create wonderful cards and crafts with a Little Pony Feel.
Me, I just went full on pretty glitter with my Top Note die layered over some plaid glitter DSP. I also used my Itty Bitty Banner stamps and dies for a fun party feel to add to the glittery cupcakes and . I was scared to stamp on my background image, but thankfully it turned out crisp (not something I am usually good at). I think it came together in a fun, pony-rific way!
So definitely stay tuned once I get my hands on more of these adorable little critters and see how I use the My Little Pony universe to inspire more creations.


Thanks for stopping by

~Brandie~


Monday, March 20, 2017

Hopeful(y) Creative

Hello Stampers!

Tonight I will be sharing some of my creations that I made using some of the most beautiful stamp sets I have come across. Whimsy Stamps have a collection called Wee Stamps that I am just in love with. The artwork is so elegant and beautiful. My only critique would be MORE BOY STAMPS PLEASE lol. Simply because it has been said I have way too many girly, pretty, feminine items and I have a hard time trying to create for the not-so-girly frou frou crowd.

So introducing Hopeful:

I tried to get as much dimension as possible with out bulking the card too much. I used some Spellbinders leave dies, EK Success flower punch, SU! Petite Petals punch. Then just layered some old DSP I had.















And Bashful:

I am just trying my hand at this whole almost 3 dimensional type of card ideas. I had to make these flatter as they were for a co-worker's custom order and they'll be heading in the mail- but I will definitely be using these again in the future for a variety of projects (these AND a few other choice Wee Stamp characters I have hoarded :) )




With Bashful I layered mini and small flower punches a few times to create multi petaled flowers and used this wonderful flourish die I had hanging around.

My friend wanted the colors red and blue for her friend, so for Hopeful I used Cherry Cobbler and Marina Mist and then Soft Sky and Real Red for Bashful. Then I used Smokey Slate for the card base.

So much fun to try different layering ideas to make a 'simple' A2 card POP.

Thanks for stopping by!

~Brandie~

Friday, March 17, 2017

Tons of Fun

Hello Stampers!

A few posts ago I blogged about the cute piggies available from My Favorite Things.
Well let me introduce: Adorable Elephants!
 As you can see, I have been on a bit of an easel card kick, lol. I also am loving (as I mentioned before) doing colorable images in almost storybook type setting. I am also having a lot of fun creating these background images by simply sponging a variety of colors and patterns. I have shown you my sunset, this is my cloudy day and really easy to cut more 'clouds' from my cupcake builder punch. I layered Pool Party and Marina Mist ink to create the sky and cut a curved boarder to separate sky from grass so they wouldn't smudge together. Then I blended Pear Pizzazz and Old Olive for the grass.

I tried to get my copics to echo the soft, almost a Winnie-the-Pooh type color scheme. Finished it off with a beautiful plaid background mat from a Provo Craft DSP stack.

The sentiments are from the Adorable Elephant set and had an almost Peek-a-Boo elephant and balloons.

Stay tuned for more to come! Thanks for stopping by.

~Brandie~

Thursday, March 16, 2017

Spring Is Here!

Well no. Not really. We have had a batch of warmer weather but we're expecting snow again up here in what I lovingly refer to as the Northern Tundra. Plus who am I kidding? As a Northern Albertan born and raised I know that we're getting 'second winter' soon and we'll finally get spring after the final snow fall in May sometime. Usually the long weekend.

I wish I were kidding.

At least we have more light out :) That's the one thing I hate about winter (other than the length of it all up here) is the chronic darkness. I like being inside, but I thrive in sunshine and bright colors. And as any good crafter knows, if you can't have it, make it!

After making those St. Patty's day cuties a little while ago for a friend, she brought HER friend over to my place to order a card. Ahhh word of mouth advertising, gotta love it!
Anyways, her friend was blown again (blush) and wanted pretty much the exact same card, but a different Greeting Farm Hatter character and brighter colors for her mother's birthday.
Blue and Purple and Green and Yellow. Easter colors- but not TOO Easter-ish.
Ummmm Okay? lol.

Alas here is what I came up with!



My color palette this time was Rich Razzleberry, Old Olive, Daffodil Delight and Marina Mist. I wouldn't have put those colors together myself, but after the request I feel I may do these colors more often. They just scream SPRING IS HERE! Then the sweet little hatter with her hair of gold completes this Easel card.
I also went out and treated myself to some EK Success not-so-tiny flowers. I already had a variety of tiny ones so getting the next set up and layering the 'petals' made this card have even more pop of spring. Using Whisper White card stock and stacking the flowers, I was able to ink the edges to give each flower some dimension. The almost gold ribbon in a bright yellow complimented the hatter's hair and finished off this card quite nicely.

Well that's it for me. Have a great day!

~Brandie~

Sunday, March 12, 2017

Sale a Bration Water Color

Hello!

For all you Stampin' Up! followers and lovers out there, you'll know that Sale A Bration is one of Stampin' Up!'s biggest and best events that everyone waits for each year. Other than the Annual Catalogue Launch, it may be my favourite time of the SU! calendar year.
As it winds down I get my freebies out and start creating. I got the Photopolymer set "Avant Garden" as it was free and one that I thought was okay- but maybe just sit in my 'maybe I'll get to it someday' stash. I don't know about you, but I have a few of those guilty sets stashed away.
Then while deciding to host a Sale-A-Bration final hurrah party, I wasn't sure what to use and do for make and takes and again, thank you Pinterest for some ah-mazing ideas with said Avant Garden stamp set.
I wasn't big on the 'real life' type flowers. I love more playful, cartoonish or watercolored type images. So when I saw what others were doing in a watercolor type theme I jumped on that bandwagon.
So mixing Avant Garden, So Very Much (also available during Sale-a-Bration) and Petite Petals I came up with these:
 I chose a very pretty color pallet. I love the Sweet Sugarplum color and really do hope then when SU! revamps their color spectrum, they choose to keep this color.
I have Sweet Sugarplum, Blushing Bride, Sahara Sand and Pear Pizzazz.

I also really liked the font of the Avant Garden set. I hope to see more sets with the coordinating fonts to create more sentiments. I also thought the Petite Petal stamp set and punch as well as the Flower Shot stamp set and coordinating punch has some textured flowers that work really well with this set as well. I think even Gorgeous Grunge would work flawlessly with this set.
So beautiful and so much fun.


 There is so much you can do with this set and I'm glad I gave it a go. Being inspired from other stamping artists I loved how some people used the set to create an almost 'floral spray' feel. So I tried to emulate that in my cards, along the card itself, in the corners or peeking behind a matted sentiment. It was even super simple and elegant to creating a background page. It would be no problem to blend colors and do an entire 12x12 sheet with this set to make a set of one sheet wonder cards.
I hope you were all inspired and enjoyed my take on the Avant Garden and So Very Much stamp sets.

~Brandie~

Tuesday, March 7, 2017

Little Fairy

Happy Tuesday!
Monday's ugly sister, lol.
I never minded Tuesdays- one of my favorite shows, Face Off, is on on Tuesday nights as is Ink Master. I have a soft spot for competition shows, especially ones that involve art and creativity. They usually go on the back ground as I'm creating at my desk then as the contestants are all frantic finishing their pieces I feel pushed to finish my own work, lol.
Very motivating.

So I had an order a few months ago for some children birthday cards. A friend of mine who loves my work, just wanted a variety of boy and girl birthday cards to have on hand for when a kid's party popped up. And if you have kids, you know how out of the blue a birthday party invite can be, especially on a Friday night when  you're pulling everything out of the backpack (or Sunday evening and  you realize you missed the party and you feel horrible!) So makes life a little easier when you have a card ready to go.

I do girly more than I do boyish (which isn't really fair as I have 2 of each), but I myself am a girly girl so I tend to lean towards pinks and flowers and glitter as go-tos in my creations.

So going back to The Greeting Farm and their Magical Bean set, I used this little darling to create a simple layered card.

I have been been trying unique cuts and folds for cards lately, trying to make a card unique and interesting without adding too much bulk and additional embellishments. As beautiful as those kinds of cards are, the cost to create them was outweighing the amount I charged.

Trying to go basic without being boring I tried to just layer various, simple pieces together and I really enjoy how it all came together. Using my Stampin' Up Brick Wall embossing folder, I embossed a sheet of Crumb Cake, then stamped a swirled floral image on it and sponged Crumb Cake ink over it for a wonderfully distressed textured feel that created a great base for the Magical Bean Fairy. Then Flirty Flamingo and Rich Razzleberry mats layered with Stampin' Dimensionals allowed me to have a vanilla ribbon peek underneath.

I dusted off the old Top Note Die and cut the Pink Pirouette die in half, letting a piece of it peek behind the layers.
Then using the same colors and my Itty Bitty SU! punches and Petite Petal punch, I created a fun blast of petals in the corner. Finally I finished the image off with a sentiment from the retired Remembering Your Birthday stamp set.
I loved putting the sentiment on its side as opposed to across in the traditional way. I feel that it gave my card more of an interesting design.

I think what I enjoyed most about creating this card was just going out of my comfort zone. I went with a traditional A2 tent fold, and was able to make something interesting out of it.

I hope it all inspired you to think out of your own creative boxes. Stay tuned for more layering and dimensional cards that are deceptively quick and easy, but will look like it took you ages to complete.

~Brandie~

Saturday, March 4, 2017

Little Piggies

So a few new things have happened to me lately, and one of those things was finally getting off my butt and opening my own etsy store. I have had my own Facebook store for a few years now, but sadly with work and 4 kids it had been horribly neglected.
All that being said, I have been busy working on various creations (to come soon) and while doing that I had found a few new craft companies (darn you pinterest! Oh who am I kidding?) and one of them is My Favorite Things. They have got the cutest, most colorable images out there! I have loved creating my own designer series paper to get the look I want, and after some inspiration from Pinterest again, I have started creating my own back grounds.
LOVE THEM! The masking and sponging techniques used is so quick, so simple, yet so effective, not to mention FUN!
These Little Piggies went wee wee wee all the way to my craft desk!
 These little guys are a part of the Hog Heaven Stamp Set from My Favorite things. I love how they have the coordinating dies to make fussy cutting almost a thing of the past (which is great cuz I'm not that great at fussy cutting).

I'm still a Stampin' Up! girl at heart so I was able to use my Top Note Die (seriously- why on earth did they retire it? It's PERFECT!) and created an awesome base to layer on patterned paper to create a background scene for the piggies. Using Melon Mambo, Daffodil Delight and Tangerine Tango, I cut the cupcake top out of the retired cupcake builder punch from Stampin' Up! and used it as a cloud mask as I build the color up from the Daffodil to the Tangerine to the Melon for a lovely sunset sky. Then I layered Old Olive and Pear  Pizzazz for grass, while using Copic YG04 and YG06 to make little grass bundles.
The stamp sets come with a small variety of punny sentiments and seriously, who doesn't like a good pun? And, as always, using my staple, Stampin' Dimensions to create dimension.



I hope you enjoyed them and are inspired to create your own!

~Brandie~

Wednesday, March 1, 2017

St. Patty's Day Cuties

Hello all!
March 1st and here in Northern Alberta we got a lovely blanket of snow.
I love winter, but I am so over snow. I am super ready for spring.
Until then, I am fighting the winter blues with lovely spring colors and textures here at the ol' craft desk. I haven't been a big St. Patrick's day celebrator in the past, though I've been known to wear a wee bit o' green to ward off all pinches. I did get an order for a St. Patrick's day card so it was a way for me to break out some Irish Spirit.
Now a while ago I pre-ordered the adorable Hatters Collection of rubber stamps from The Greeting Farm. I adore these little cuties, and have been loving coloring with my copics (not great yet- but getting the hang of them!) I figured the top hatted cherubs would be perfect as little leprechauns in a simple easel card. Then doing some layers and flowers finished off the look.
I used some of my glitter paper from a stack I had purchased, which happened to go great with So Saffron and Pear Pizzazz and Smoky Slate.






I had a lot of fun layering the Spellbinders scalloped Circles, then using the curved ivy stamp from the Foxy Friends Stamp Set for Stampin' Up! was the perfect finishing touch.
I tried a layering technique with the Stampin' Up! punches and I really like how they turned out on the little Leprechaun girl. I do not have any sort of St. Patrick's day sentiment stamps so I went old school and just printed out a fun font from my computer. I figured go-to phrases like "Top O' the Mornin' to Ya" and "Luck O' the Irish" would be fun- then a simply "Happy St. Patrick's Day" layered with fun spring time Irish colors.

So these were a lot of fun :) They come in at 4.25x4.25 size, so I could build the card either up or out and still be a good A2 size.

I hope this has inspired you all! Feel free to check my new store out on Etsy as well. It's under:
ThePaperGiftBoutique

Thanks for stopping by and happy stampin!

~Brandie~