I Promise It’s Me and I’m back…

This is my attempt at ‘dusting off the old cobwebs’ on this blog. I’ve missed you buddy and I’ve missed my blog friends even more. Though you have not seen me here lately, some may have seen me in a different forum. I’m a monthly contributor at Die Cut Crazy, a monthly digital magazine for die cut lovers. I thought I would share some past magazine projects with you as a way to say ‘hello old friends’.

DIE CUT CRAZY JULY 2013

Chalk Coloring Method - Mini Notes

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DIE CUT CRAZY AUGUST 2013

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DIE CUT CRAZY SEPTEMBER 2013

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DIE CUT CRAZY OCTOBER 2013

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If you’re interested in learning more about Die Cut Crazy (DCC), I hope you check out their website and their Facebook page. They are a growing magazine which is getting better and better with each issue! I’m so tickled to be a part of this journey. The contributors are a wonderful group of women (though I hope to see some crafty guys join up too)! And Stephanie, the Editor, is so sweet and helpful. She and her lovely husband, Jeremy, make the magazine magic happen with each issue. Not only is the magazine filled with contributors’ tutorials and photos, but there are card and scrapbook galleries for even more inspiration. If you’re feeling crafty ladies and gents and want to share your creations, send DCC an email. You might find yourself in their next issue! More details are provided in their post here.

Die Cut Crazy (DCC) offers three ways to purchase and download – via iPhone, iPad, or PDF. To check out the details in iTunes, click here. For a PDF version, click the DCC website here. The PDF version is perfect for those like me who do not have an iPhone or iPad. Just pay 99 cents and the issue is yours to keep on your computer. Easy-peasy-lemon-squeezy!

My final note is to say how much I’ve missed my fellow blog buddies and visitors. I hope to ‘see’ you again soon. I have a lot of blog visiting to do to see what you all have been up to.  I’ve missed your talented creations and want you to know how much you inspire me.

Thank you,

Vanessa

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“Special Delivery” Anniversary Card

Hello all ~ I made a card for my sister and brother-in-law’s upcoming anniversary. They have an autumn anniversary so I played on the idea of autumn leaves but kept the card’s colors bright and playful to fit any occasion. I love the stamp image on Wild Card so I played on the theme of “Special Delivery for two special people” which is the inside sentiment that I typed in Word. The special delivery design can be seen in the stamp mat, the postal mark I made in Word, and in the miniature envelope filled with autumn leaves. It’s as if the envelope idea is deconstructed – envelope, then postal mark, then stamp. It was fun  playing with these elements to design a card for a special event.

The stamp image on Wild Card is found under the alphabet feature. It normally has an inner cut that reads “stamped with love” but I hid these lines to just get the stamp shape cut at 4.5 inches. I then added a square mat measuring 4 inches which I ran through my printer to print the postal mark. I sewed these two layers together with a zig-zag stitch (this is the second time I’ve sewn a card so it’s not perfect! 🙂 ). I cut the cute envelope at 2.5 inches from Just Because Cards and the leaves are from Potpourri Basket cut at 2 inches (these are originally from Doodlecharms). The card base is 5 inches square so I cut an envelope from Walk in My Garden at 5 inches to mail it to my sister! The leaves are doodled with a fine point black pen and distressed with brown ink. I then embossed them with Cuttlebug folders – D’vine Swirls and Swiss Dots. I added a little bow to the envelope with a glue dot.

I am entering this card into the following challenges:

http://fantabulouscricut.blogspot.com/2012/11/challenge-me-monday-136.html (Fall Harvest – Make a project using Fall leaves) Deadline: Midnight November 11 (MST)

http://cardztv.blogspot.com/2012/11/attitude-of-gratitude-cricut-cardz.html (Attitude of Gratitude – Make a card for Thanksgiving using any cartridge(s), and any colors you’d like) Deadline: Noon November 20 (EST)

“Seeing Spots” FCCB Challenge – Thanksgiving Card

The Fantabulous Cricut Challenge Blog (FCCB) is hosting another challenge this week – Challenge #135 Seeing Spots – make a project featuring polka dots. I decided to make another Thanksgiving card and incorporate polka dots to enter the challenge. The deadline is midnight, November 4th (MT) in case you’re interested in entering! The challenge is listed here: http://fantabulouscricut.blogspot.com/2012/10/challenge-me-monday-135.html.

For this card, I used The Paper Studio’s Natural Botanical stack (Hobby Lobby) and a piece of cream cardstock. I used the Straight from the Nest (SFTN) cartridge for the little tree layers (cut at 3 inches) and Walk in My Garden (WIMG) for the 5 inch square card base (this can also be done by hand with a paper trimmer ~ 10 inch long x 5 inch wide – fold in half). I also used WIMG to cut the square mat layers at 4 & 3/4 and 4 & 1/2 inches. I love using Design Studio to lay out my card designs so cutting squares this way is easier and faster. I also shrunk a WIMG square to measure 2 & 3/4 x 4 & 1/4 inches for the cream mat under the tree.

The polka dots for the FCCB challenge can be seen in the light green polka dotted paper and in the cream cardstock that’s embossed with Cuttlebug’s “Swiss Dots” embossing folder. Even the orange paper on the tree and card base has flowers with dots in the center. And for just a bit more dots, I added tiny pearl embellishments on the upper right! I love the velvet ric rac ribbon from American Crafts. It adds a nice punch of autumn color and texture. The “Bountiful Blessings” sentiment and brown ink are from Stampabilities (Hobby Lobby). I used this same ink to distress the edges of the cream cardstock prior to dry embossing. For additional dimension, I raised the tree up with foam adhesive (Michael’s).

I’m also entering this card in Cardz TV’s “I’m So Thankful” challenge – make a card or project for Thanksgiving. The deadline for this challenge is Thursday, November 8th at Noon (EST). Here is the challenge link for more details: http://cardztv.blogspot.com/2012/11/im-so-thankful-ctv-stamps-dt-challenge.html. One lucky submitter will be randomly drawn for a set of Cardz TV stamps!

And since I just learned about another cool challenge blog, I’m entering a challenge at “Pause Dream Enjoy Challenges”. This week’s challenge is here: http://pausedreamenjoychallenges.blogspot.com/2012/11/ch-44-orange-brown.html. Make anything with orange and brown! I think this card will work! 🙂 The deadline for this challenge is Thursday, November 8th at Noon (EST). A winner will be chosen by random.org for a $10 gift certificate for Dude Time Doodles. It would be fun if you played along!

Thanks for looking!

Vanessa

Colors of Autumn – Thanksgiving Card

I had fun trying out my new “Autumn Leaves” Tsukineko Kaleidacolor ink pad! This is a 5 color ink pad that gives you a rainbow of color for a multi-colored look using stamps or a brayer. For this card, I used the oak leaf from Inkadinkado Mini Stamps, Leaves. I stamped it twice onto cream cardstock, then fussy cut the images out with scissors. The embossed wreath is from Sizzix’s Birds and Wreath set. I dry embossed cream cardstock and colored the raised image using a clear ink embossing pen and soft chalk. It’s best to work in small sections with the embossing pen so that it’s still damp when applying the chalk. The embossing ink permanently sets the chalk so there’s no mess! Plus, if you make a mistake with your chalk on other parts of your paper, you can simply erase the mistake. I stamped “Blessings” using the Kaleidacolor pad to tie in with the leaves. This stamp and the flower layers are from Michael’s Dollar Bin. I secured the flowers together with an orange brad then adhered it with foam dimensionals. One leaf is also adhered with dimensionals to pop it up from the card.

Supplies

  • Tsukineko Kaleidacolor Ink Pad – Autumn Leaves
  • Inkadinkado Mini Stamps – Leaves
  • Sizzix A2 Embossing Folder – Elegant Wreath
  • Ranger Inkssentials Clear Embossing Pen
  • Craft-T Chalks – Orange, Ruddy Red, Burnt Sienna, Light Brown, Dark Brown
  • Flowers – Michael’s Dollar Bin
  • Orange Pastel Brad – The Paper Studio (Hobby Lobby)
  • “Blessings” Stamp – Michael’s Dollar Bin
  • 4.25 x 5.5 cream cardstock
  • 4.5 x 5.75 brown cardstock
  • 4.75 x 12 orange cardstock – scored in the middle then folded to make card base measuring 4 & 3/4 x 6 inches
  • Corner Rounder Punch – Hobby Lobby
  • 3D foam adhesive squares – Michael’s
  • Elmer’s CraftBond Adhesive dot runner – Wal-Mart

The Sizzix Elegant Wreath embossing folder can be used in so many designs. Just by changing colors or embellishments, you get a whole new look. Here are three other cards I made in previous posts using this versatile folder:

Got Candy? Halloween Card

In honor of my first 2012 Halloween card (it’s the second one I’ve ever made!), I changed my theme to “Monster”. This is a free WordPress.com Theme in case you’re a WordPresser and are interested in using it for the next few weeks, or longer if you dare :)! I used my Potpourri Basket cartridge to make this cute little jack-o-lantern shaped card. I welded two pumpkin shadows at 5.5 inches in Design Studio and then cut the face in orange cardstock. This image is originally from Stretch Your Imagination. Since I have Potpourri there are only two layers – shadow feature and the jack-o-lantern face so I ran the face again in green patterned paper and hand trimmed the vine, stem, and leaf with scissors and glued this to my card. I outlined the green parts with a fine point black pen and inked the edges of the orange pumpkin with black ink for more depth. I’m linking this up to My Craft Spot’s Too cute to spook! challenge!

I had fun with the inside sentiment using Word on my computer. I used the Chiller font in 36 point and inserted a spider symbol using Webdings. This fits perfectly on a 4 inch circle cut from Accent Essentials. I then cut a purple circle at 4 & 1/4 inches, and a black circle at 4 & 1/2 inches. (You will also note that I ran the pumpkin in orange cardstock again as a backdrop to my sentiment and circle mats.) I used Chiller again on the tag in 16 point. I used a 1 & 1/4 inch circle cut from Accent Essentials for “Oct. 31st” and then backed this up with a 1 & 3/8 inch purple circle and a 1 & 1/2 inch black circle. I used my 1/8 inch hold punch on the top of the tag and ran a circular paper clip through it to attach to the pumpkin vine.

Because the tag looked too plain, I cut a 1 & 1/2 inch bat from Wild Card and enbellished it with Glossy Accents. I also added the googly eyes to the pumpkin as an after thought to make it more whimsical.

Thanks for checking it out and remember… “Got Candy?” Halloween is two weeks away! 🙂 ~Vanessa

“Autumn Colors” Card

This was definitely one of those experiments where I had a vision and it went into another direction. This happens a lot to me! 🙂 But I always have fun trying new things because I learn more each time I do. For instance, I learned that my Ink It Up! stamp inks don’t work well with a brayer, and some of the lighter colors aren’t as crisp as some of the more expensive inks out there. I am currently waiting on an Amazon order for a set of leaf stamps and a product that’s been around for a while: Tsukineko Kaleidacolor Ink Pads. Since I’m working on Thanksgiving cards, I ordered Tsukineko’s Autumn Leaves palette. Once it arrives, I’m going to try the brayer technique again to see if I get better results.

For this A2 sized card, I used textured white cardstock. It resembles a linen weave. This didn’t help with stamping crisp images (another lesson I learned), but it does add to a faded watercolor look, so I’m satisfied with this experiment :). I used two stamps from Martha Stewart – a leaf and a tree. I used my brayer to roll on different Ink It Up! colors: Harvest Yellow, Terra Cotta, Khaki Green, Cranberry, and Orange.  I used Ink It Up! Orange and Tart Lime to stamp leaves on the background over the “brayered” parts – is that a word? I used Stampabilities brown ink on the edges of the card face and to stamp the tree. Then I ran the stamped cardstock through a Sizzix Damask folder which almost gives it a look of fabric or a quilt. The Blessings stamp is also from Stampabilities and stamped in brown ink.

  • Light Brown Card Base – measures 4 & 1/4 x 5 & 1/2 inches (an A2 sized card) You can get two cards out of a 8 1/2 x 11 sheet of cardstock that opens vertically like this by cutting the sheet in half lengthwise (in portrait mode).
  • Medium Brown Mat – measures 4 & 1/8 x 5 & 3/8
  • Stamped Embossed Mat – measures 4 x 5 & 1/4 inches

I used hemp cord wrapped around three times and then strung the cord through two buttons and tied it off in a bow.

Thanks for checking out my experiment!

Vanessa

Autumn Leaf Shape Card

With Autumn settling into my mind, I’ve delved into making some Fall inspired cards. I may use some of these for Thanksgiving greetings. Today I created this leaf-shaped card using Cricut’s Design Studio to weld two leaves together. The leaf is originally from Doodlecharms but it’s also included on the Potpourri Basket cartridge, which is the one I have. I used two shadows at 6 inches (flipping one and then pivoting each leaf to intersect enough to hold the card together when folded). I am always looking for ways to weld things together because I love shape cards. The trick is getting enough points to intersect for durability.

Here’s a screen shot of the weld ~ 

And here is the final card ~

I used brown ink to distress the top leaf and the card base. I typed the “Happy Fall” sentiment using Word. I printed it on Paper Studio’s “Natural Botanical” paper trimmed to fit my printer. Then I hand cut it into a banner. I love the typewriter look of the font. It’s called “Batik Regular” in 22 point bold. I used some thin twine and a button to finish off the look. It’s secured with a glue dot.

For the inside, I used an inspirational quote by Albert Camus ~ font is Batik Regular in 14 point. More inking here too.

Autumn Owl Birthday Card with Envelope

Ok, this is one of those cards that I’m not thrilled about. I hope it grows on me in time before I make the decision to mail it to my other brother-in-law who has a birthday coming up later in October. Since he has an autumn birthday, I wanted to use fall-colored patterned paper for the owl card on the “Wild Card” cartridge. I have never made this card before and the opportunities for embellishment are limited due its shape. To make it a bit more masculine, I added a velvety orange belt and used a leaf slider from the “Straight From the Nest” cartridge as a buckle. I wanted to add a birthday sentiment and the only space left was at the top. To keep it from being too plain, I added some maple leafs  and now the placement reminds me of a cluster of flowers as if this was for a female! Maybe I’m just too close to it since just having made it and it’s not that bad. Any whooo (pun intended), I do like the greeting printed on the inside that starts with “Greetings Wise One” so I may just run with it.

The card base was cut at 5 inches along with the corresponding envelope (Wild Card). The slider was cut at 1 & 1/4 inches and worked well with the 1/4 inch ribbon. I ran the slider and the leaves through my Swiss Dots embossing folder and used Ink It Up! inks to distress them. The autumn paper is from Paper Studio’s “Natural Botanical” stack at Hobby Lobby. I used Glossy Accents on the beak, buttons for the eyes, and a rub-on for Happy Birthday.

The inside greeting was printed using my computer. To do this, cut another owl card on lighter paper and cut it in half with scissors. You will need to use the right half to print the sentiment. Take note of the length and width of your shape so that your text doesn’t overflow and get cut off. I use a plain sheet of copy paper first to test how it will print and adjust as needed. Once I am happy with the result, I line up the shape on the back side of the copy paper and tape it down on a few edges. Then just run it back through your printer so that the text prints on the shape. Peel off the tape and adhere the sentiment to your card base. Sometimes when I’m lining up a shape on the back side of copy paper I forget to flip the shape when actually taping it down. Keep this in mind so that the text prints on the side you want.

Thanks for taking a look! Any opinions (negative or positive) are welcome :).

~Vanessa

Happy Thanksgiving!

As this day of reflecting on our blessings comes to a close, I would like to express my gratitude for my family. My husband and I had Thanksgiving with just the two of us this year due to a work conflict, but we were able to visit my family in Florida last week for my sister and brother-in-law’s 16th wedding anniversary. We had a wonderful time going out to dinner on their anniversary and my lovely mother-in-law also attended. We were taken to a spectacular restaurant called Bern’s in Tampa, Florida. It was a delightful culinary experience and is the essence of fine dining.  We had a wonderful time eating Filet Mignon and indulging in their infamous béarnaise sauce. The entire presentation was magnificent and made for a truly memorable wedding anniversary for my sister and her husband.  After we dined, we enjoyed a delightful trip upstairs to Bern’s famous Harry Waugh Dessert Room. The room is filled with private booths made from old wine casks.  It lent to a cozy, quieter ambiance which was highlighted with decadent desserts.  It really topped off the evening as we laughed, talked, and reminisced.

Also during the visit, we had a barbecue and my other brother-in-law and sister-in-law came over with their two children. It was wonderful seeing them again and to see how much my nephew and niece have grown! Since Florida has milder temperatures (not too hot, not too cold this time of year), it was a perfect setting for visiting and having a meal together outside. This entire visit serves as a nice Thanksgiving memory since we were not able to be together on this holiday as a family.

I hope everyone had a wonderful Thanksgiving filled with love and companionship with their family and friends.  Even though this one day is set aside for giving thanks, may we remember to always show gratitude for the blessings we have in our lives.

Happy Thanksgiving!

Vanessa

A Quiet Autumn Scene – Thanksgiving Card

I wanted to capture an autumn scene and show the beauty that this wonderful season offers.  This card is dedicated to my husband, Glen in honor of our wonderful Thanksgivings together and the ones to come.

Cartridges used:

Bloom, Designer’s Calendar, Pagoda, Storybook, and Wild Card

Papers Used:

My Mind’s Eye Simply Delightful (colored paper), Wal-Mart card stock (card base), Paper Studio’s Natural Botanical card stock (brown paper)

Embellishments:

Swiss Dots Cuttlebug Folder; Inking using Stampabilities brown ink; Shading using a brown colored pencil

I made a 5×7 card base, then trimmed light blue paper to 5×7 and adhered it to the front of the card. Next I cut a 5×7 mat of light green paper and used a pencil to sketch hills.  I used scissors to cut around each hill, embossed them with a Swiss Dots folder, then inked the edges with brown ink and a Q-tip for definition.  I then adhered the hill pieces to the blue mat fitting them like a puzzle.  I cut the “Bloom” tree trunks (both kinds on the cartridge) at 3 inches using brown card stock and cut one layer of leaves in orange paper for the larger tree.  I cut extra leaves in orange paper at 4 inches so they would appear larger as they fell to the ground and could be used on the other trees.  The pumpkins are cut at 2 inches from Designer’s Calendar.  I used a brown colored pencil to color in the stem and make ridges in the pumpkin.  I also applied a bit of ink over these for more dimension. The bridge is cut from Pagoda at 1 1/2 inches.  The inside sentiment was done on my computer using Edwardian Script. I cut a 1 inch owl from Storybook and some maple leaves from Wild Card at 3 and 1 inches.