Tuesday, March 29, 2016

something for the (big or biggest) boys

let's face it, guy cards are HARD. and the hardest kind of guy cards are the ones for older boys/younger men... ages about 13-23... seriously, sometimes it's tempting to just (GASP!) just hit hallmark, isn't it??! so we're taking the bull by the horns this week at shopping our stash and making exactly those kinds of cards. 'cause we're papercrafters, and we don't buy cards!!!

background: one sheet of notebook paper run through a xyron, allowed to get stuck to itself, torn apart, wrinkled, ripped into smaller pieces, then collaged together on an 8.5x5.5" cardstock panel (no, seriously, that's what happened, it was a total accident, i was planning just to stick the notebook paper to the cardstock and make a card, but i'm so glad that didn't happen b/c this is SO MUCH COOLER!!!); alphabet stamps: heidi swapp; other stamps: grungy circles by dina wakley, large ring and dotted circle by 7 gypsies, large and small stars by PSX; rub-ons: 7 gypsies, basic grey, heidi swapp, american crafts; tapes: october afternoon, love my tapes, recollections, freckled fawn; chipboard letters: basic grey; star brads: oriental trading; glossy black cardstock: ranger; inks: ranger distress in fired brick and hickory smoke, ranger archival in black; adhesives: xyron, elmers brand gluetape, sewing machine
i confess that i went absolutely blank for like a day and a half. seriously. i had NO IDEAS for this one, and i started to worry a bit. but then i remembered i had guts, determination, creativity, loads of art supplies and t'nternet... so i did what women lucky enough to be blessed with those attributes always do at times like these: yes, i surfed over to pinterest to steal the very best older boy/younger man card i could possibly find!!! :) i saw some really REALLY great "you rock" cards that used guitar images, some totally awesome skateboarding- themed ideas; super-cool cards with car and video game ideas... but somehow nothing quite hit me. a few of my favorites had interesting grungy backgrounds, however, and i realized i hadn't made one of those in a long time, so i decided that's what i should do. i grabbed some notebook paper, tapes, a few stamps, and the oldest-and-least-likely-to-rub-well rub-ons in my collection and went to town. boy that was fun! i suspect this is the start of a mini-obsession, so i'll apologize in advance if i bore the heck out of you for the next two weeks, lol!

a place that is never, EVER boring is the SOS blog, b/c that's where my fellow design team darlings hang out each week. go say hi, won't you, and leave them some love! ♥♥♥

an EGG-cellent adventure

hey there, happy tuesday! hope those of you who were celebrating had a very happy easter, and that everyone else enjoyed a particularly pleasant sunday! i'm pretty sure that t'internet this week will be full of tips and tricks for using up leftover easter eggs; but as far as I know, nobody is answering the equally important question of what to do with leftover colored egg brads... so luckily, i've thought up a few ideas about that, and posted them over on the eyelet outlet blog today. i'll give you a hint, they involve FLOWERS! here's another hint, lol:

but there are more pics and loads more details on the eyelet outlet blog so g'head and hop over there, crafty darlings! ♥

Friday, March 25, 2016

here comes santa claus!

we're celebrating the man in the red suit this fortnight at ♥JINGLE BELLES♥ so won't you join us and make a card that features either "santa baby" or one of the other denizens of the north pole, such as mrs. claus, the elves, the reindeer or... well, you get the idea, right?!

santa illustration from a vintage copy of "the night before christmas" which i've scaled down and printed on kodak premium glossy photo paper; patterned papers: october afternoon, echo park, dcwv, doodlebug; tag: echo park; ribbon: from my stash; glossy white cardstock: paper accents; adhesives: elmers brand gluetape, 3m foam tape, sewing machine

sometimes it's kind of good to make a card in a bit of hurry, because it forces you to choose your ingredients quickly, without over-thinking. or in my case, with *less* over-thinking... cause i'm still ME, lol! it also helps to have a fabulous sketch. in this case, i've used retro sketches #207 to guide my layout:

stephanie has also made a lovely card featuring, "santa baby" and it's posted at ♥JINGLE BELLES♥... check it out, won't you?

Wednesday, March 23, 2016

hippity hoppity...

it's my day on the eyelet outlet blog and i just couldn't resist making one more easter card... mostly because eyelet outlet's chocolate bunny and pastel rabbit brads are sooooooo flippin' cute, and coordinate so perfectly with the rabbit washi tape and easter bubble brads!

more pics and details over at the eyelet outlet blog... *HOP* on over! (ok, yeah, that's one of my most diabolical puns ever... so of course i'm inordinately proud, lol!) :) :) :)

Tuesday, March 22, 2016

it's about time

this week's challenge at shopping our stash, that is, "cuckoo for you" by which we mean we'd like to see projects with clocks on them! here's mine:

patterned paper: bella blvd, k and co, crate paper; pocket and chipboard clock: teresa collins; trimmed down pocket cards: my mind's eye, crate paper, american crafts; bunting: pink paislee; ribbon: michaels; stickers: echo park, american crafts, hambly, basic grey, crate paper, sandylion; rabbit brad: eyelet outlet; glossy white cardstock: paper accents; adhesives: elmers brand gluetape, 3m foam tape, gluedots, staples, sewing machine

i'm pretty excited to have an excuse to use the teresa collins clock pocket and chipboard, i don't even know how old those are! actually everything on this card (and there's A LOT of it, lol!) is pretty elderly, so it was really fun to just keep piling on the goodies! another thing that took me back a bit was the pocket; when my nieces were little, i used to make them interactive cards with lots of little bits and bobs and love notes tucked into a pocket for them to find... i haven't done one of those in ages, so it was really fun to revisit the idea. here are the bits and bobs inside this one:

there's loads more *TIMELY* goodness over at SOS, why not hop over there and see them right now?

Friday, March 18, 2016

a very vintage christmas

we're still celebrating the "spirit of xmas past" at ♥JINGLE BELLES♥ so you've still got plenty of time to make a vintage-style holiday card with new ingredients ...OR... any style holiday card with vintage ingredients ...OR... just make something that captures an "old fashioned" holiday feeling to you! i went vintage... with a twist:

vintage image and text re-sized and printed on staples brand and core'dinations cardstock, respectively; vintage lace from my stash; layery glittery floral: prima; clear edge jewel bling and multi-sized bling: eyelet outlet; adhesives: elmers brand gluetape, 3m foam tape, gluedots, sewing machine

because i love and use and even sell vintage holiday goodies (via my etsy shop, just enough stuff, which is sponsoring this fortnight's prompt with a bit of a prize! ♥) i often get questions from folks who, like me, love to collect and save cool "bits and bobs" but then aren't quite sure how to actually use them on cards. 

one stumbling block can be size... the beautiful english village scene i wanted to use on this card took up an entire 8x11" page! (even i don't make cards that big, lol!) then i thought it'd be wonderful to use a bit of dickens' "a christmas carol" as background, but the one i chose was printed on bright white semi-gloss paper... NOT very vintage-looking and totally wrong for the illustration! luckily, my handy all-in-one printer came to the rescue on both counts: i resized the picture to 60% and printed it out on plain matte cardstock; i did the text at full-sized but used a slightly textural cafe au lait cardstock as its base. et voila!

i've used this week's gorgeous sketch saturday layout (#403) very faithfully, though i did rotate it ninety degrees counterclockwise.

miss stephanie has a gorgeous card to show you, plus the "spirit of xmas past" readers' gallery is rather glorious... won't you stop by ♥JINGLE BELLES♥ and enjoy those treats?!

Thursday, March 17, 2016

happy st. paddy's day!

hey i know-- let's celebrate with an easter card!!! :) ok, yeah, it's kind of a weird combination, but today just happens to be my turn to show off... (AHEM!) or rather... to present a new project (that's better!) on the eyelet outlet blog, and there are so many fabulous easter themed items at eyelet outlet that i was dying to use at least some of them to make an easter card!

as soon as i saw the colorful easter egg brads and the adorable rabbit brads, i thought, "EGG HUNT!" i was going to do a bit of hand-lettering, but then i found these ancient ki memories pastel chips and thought they'd be perfect... i stand by that decision, lol. so basically all i had to do was use colorburst pigments to paint a little meadow for them all to inhabit. and that was about it. oh i added a strip of stitched washi tape because, let's face it, it's the perfect shade of purple for easter, isn't it? 

of course there are TONS more easter items in the eyelet outlet shop, including (uber-cute!!!) chocolate bunny brads, happy easter washi and egg-shaped bling... there's tons more inspiration on the eyelet outlet blog as well, where my amazing design team-mates are rockin' it every single day! off you go, darlings! ♥

Tuesday, March 15, 2016

oh me lucky charms!!!

comin' up on saint paddy's day pretty quickly here, so we've got a "multiple choice" challenge for ya this week at shopping our stash. you can make a last minute card for the BIG DAY; ...OR... you can make a project that's predominantly green; ...OR... you can incorporate charms ...OR... i suppose you could combine all of those together, but it doesn't really get you extra points or anything; though i'm sure we'd all be super-impressed, lol! here's what i made:

vintage papers from a few different old atlases; glitter and foam thickers: american crafts; twine: doodlebug; charms: tim holtz; book ring and plain white cardstock pages: staples; adhesives: elmers brand gluetape, xyron, sewing machine

i was in the mood to make a travel book, for one thing, there haven't been any in my etsy shop, just enough stuff, in ages.

for another, i've got loads of travel-themed vintage ephemera that i loooooooooove to play with --AHEM-- utilize in artistic projects (that's better!).

plus, i just happened to score a very cool pack of tim holtz travel-themed charms in the clearance section of michael's last week, which seemed like A SIGN, lol.

so i'm officially listing this baby in my shop, as well as this "aloha" book that i made ages ago but somehow never posted. honestly, the plus side on days like this is that i feel utterly unworried by the imminent zombie apocalypse, seeing as how my brains are totally lacking in nutritional goodness, woohoo! :) :) :)

speaking of goodness, and brains, and glamorous good looks, did i mention my amazing design team sisters have also made fabulous projects just to inspire you? it's true! hop on over to SOS where awesomeness awaits! ♥♥♥

Sunday, March 13, 2016

birds of a feather...

...flock together. especially if i make a collage for the #SistersWithHeartInArt instagram group's current prompt "BIRDS"...

...and then think to myself, "that would make a pretty good mother's day card, actually". at which time, i'd probably go back and make a second version, seeing as how the stuff i used was still sitting around in my work area...

...and (especially) because einstein's other theory of relativity states that if a couple is lucky enough to each have a lovely mum on the scene, there had better be *TWO* equally cool cards being mailed out in may, if one expects all the relatives involved to still be speakin' to both of you the day after mother's day.

so that's what i did. because einstein was a very smart man!

meanwhile, i hope that you are doing something fun --and maybe creative?!-- on this lovely sunday. ciao, darlings! ♥♥♥

Friday, March 11, 2016

the spirit of xmas past...

...is inspiring us at ♥JINGLE BELLES♥ this fortnight; we're making new holiday cards with vintage --or vintage inspiried-- ingredients! won't you join us? here's what i made this week:

real vintage: sheet music, lace, pretty blue flowered paper that was the lining of an old envelope found inside a book i got at a booksale (woohoo!); faux vintage: super cool postcard by glitz design; other stuffs: floral and leaves: prima; white glitter paper: american crafts; blue cardstock: sei; snowflake and border punches: recollections; adhesives: elmers brand gluetape, 3m foam tape, gluedots, sewing machine

ok, so everyone including stevie wonder knows by now that i adore and collect vintagey bits; especially (but not limited to) vintage paper. in fact i have so much of that luscious sort of thing that a few years ago i started my etsy shop, just enough stuff, to share some of my "extra" goodies. so i'm pretty excited to be sponsoring our ♥JINGLE BELLES♥ fun this time... there just might be a little prize on tap for a lucky random cardmaker who links up with us this fortnight. why not hop over and check out the full details!

another great place to visit is sketch saturday, whose latest layout (#402) i have nabbed for my card:

Thursday, March 10, 2016

a few (colorful!) things that didn't fit into any other post...

there's nothing especially interesting out in our garden yet, but i'm longing for spring. so i drew some colorful flowers with markers one night, just so i could feel like it was on the way: 

plenty of my sketchbook pages don't get completed in a night. this one evolved over a few weeks. it's mostly composed of layers that were made when i was "testing" ideas or colors or stencils to use in other pages; or finishing up bits of paint or modelling paste or washi tape leftover from other projects. often this sort of page doesn't ever amount to anything, and i'm fine with that, but sometimes they start to look sort of interesting and i'll put in a little time to "finish" them, as i did here:

this little guy i drew and watercolored with distress stains on the last day of kathy racoosin's most recent 30-day coloring challenge. i didn't get to participate every day, and i didn't do much proper "practice" but i love seeing what everyone makes on instagram and kathy herself is incredibly lovely:

for that matter, i'd also love to say ♥THANK YOU♥ to everyone who visits my blog, or hangs out at SOS, or has found me through eyelet outlet, or plays along over at jingle belles. the blogiverse is such a rich and amazing place, i realize i don't spend enough time saying so, but i appreciate and am continually inspired by, my fellow crafty bloggers!!! ♥♥♥

Tuesday, March 8, 2016

in a galaxy far, far away...

ok, no, for once i'm not talking about where my brain is when i'm supposed to be doing important grown up things like taxes, this time i'm telling you about the new challenge at shopping our stash which is to create a card or project that features UFO's, aliens, space, planets, star wars or... well, you get the idea, right? here's what i made:

artists' rendering of the surface of neptune from an old, falling-apart time life book; patterned paper: prima, creative imaginations, basic grey, pink paislee; ink: colorbox; googly eye: michaels; adhesives: elmers brand gluetape, 3m foam tape, mini gluedots

the late, great david bowie once asked the musical question, "is there life on mars?" but i think a much more crucial concern to modern astrophysicists is the query, "will there be cupcakes??!" because let's face it, it's just too long a journey* to make without a pretty fair degree of certainty regarding dessert.

in the spirit of full disclosure, i feel i should post this second photo, which reveals that i've actually made a tall card, which irl looks very cool but between the weird proportions and the shiny vintage book page background was diabolical to photograph, and you couldn't see the sentiment at all:

meanwhile, my super-stellar, intergalactic design team sisters have astonishing projects from all corners of the universe, which are conveniently posted on the SOS blog for your viewing pleasure. (you're welcome!) ♥ as it happens, three of those lovely ladies are also dt members at the sisterhood of snarky stampers, where the current challenge ("g is for gears") has a funky/steampunky vibe which miss donna was kind enough to point out made my cosmic cupcake eligible, so i'm linking up over there. won't you join me?

*based on photographs and data from the mars rover, indications are that YES, there will be cupcakes... but the frosting is the horrible supermarket variety which comes in plastic tubs and taste like it's been made from a similar substance. (in fairness, the super-heated, low-oxygenation of mars' atmosphere makes it difficult to sustain the butter or cream cheese needed to make truly delicious icing.)  :/

Monday, March 7, 2016

a collagification situation

several, in fact. mostly made for our sisters with heart in art instagram challenge.  the first is for our current prompt, "LAYERS" and you can see that i've taken that idea VERY seriously. there are a lot (A LOT!) of layers here: layers of paper, layers of modelling paste, layers of drywall tape and lace... a little bit of everything* really!!!

of course anyone is welcome to work on any prompt, whenever they're inspired; there is no need to catch up, or make a commitment, or work in order, or even follow the theme very literally.

but if you have a little time, take one of the prompts that appeals to you, and follow it wherever it goes. then post to instagram with the hashtag #sisterswithheartinart so we can come marvel at your creations! (a complete list of the themes we've done so far is posted here)

last week's prompt was, "PLANTS" and it occurred to me that i hadn't made a stapled collage in far too long, so that's what i did! :)

the week before that we had, "QUOTE" for which i combined a few different stencils (including my own handcut buddha) some fun/funky brush lettering, and a magazine picture of ripply water that i added in by cutting a heart shape behind the buddha and backing the page with the magazine paper. kind of a backward way to do collage, but i really like how it looks so i predict you'll be seeing it again, lol!

wishing you a ♥HAPPY MONDAY♥ if that's not a contradiction in terms; but if it is, i'll wish you a creative and art-filled monday evening, instead! ♥♥♥

*the kitchen sink is not included, but only b/c i've not yet found an adhesive strong enough. it's just a matter of time tho. :)

Sunday, March 6, 2016

the new class schedule...

...has been posted on the paper anthology* website, so i can show ya the pics for the two that i'll be teaching in march and april. full details on the PA website; if you're in or around central new jersey, i'd looooooooooove to see you there! plus there are lots of other fab projects and teachers you can check out, and be sure to say hi to elisabeth!

class one: boho bouquet
these fun paper flowers are made using ordinary dies (so noooooooooo handcutting) and ONE SHEET of double sided patterned paper... the more colorful, the better! everyone will stack and combine their blooms a little differently, so there are infinite possibilities!

class two: collage for cardmakers
we'll combine vintage paper and images to create three fun, easy cards for a variety of occasions. students will get to choose their own images from a large selection i'll bring along, so every card can be uniquely ♥YOURS♥!  

all materials are provided, so students need only bring a basic tool kit. there are three dates for each class; full info at paper anthology, or feel free to email me (link in profile)! 

*paper anthology is located on route 46 in kenvil, nj; just over the line into the southwestern edge of morris county, easily accessible from routes 10, 80 and 206. (mapquest and full directions here)

Friday, March 4, 2016

layers are kinda my thang, baby!

i've never been accused of minimalism when it comes to cardmaking (or dessert portions, lol!) so the current brief at ♥JINGLE BELLES♥ in which we're making holiday cards with at least three layers is right up my creative street! :)

vintage image from an old ideals xmas magazine, framed in a creative imaginations sticker sentiment circle; patterned paper: k and co, making memories, my mind's eye, recollections; fancy schmancy glitter poinsettia: prima (that is REAL glass glitter on there, and it DOES tend to shed, so those of you with tiny kids or inquisitive pets might like to beware!); adhesives: elmers brand gluetape, 3m foam tape, gluedots, sewing machine

i had framed and cut out this sweet vintage image some time ago, i suppose for another challenge last year? not sure why i didn't wind up using it then, but i'm really glad it was in my "leftover bits" baggie because i recently got a pack of these gorgeous prima poinsettias at paper anthology and as soon as i saw the image again i knew they'd be perfect together.

i used this week's sketch saturday layout, which is absolutely ALWAYS an awesome idea, don't you think??

meanwhile stephanie has made another fabulous card and the reader's gallery is pretty fab as well, why not jump on over to ♥JINGLE BELLES♥ and check it out?! (you can thank me later, darlings!) ♥

Tuesday, March 1, 2016

it's MARCH!

which hopefully means that ♥SPRING♥ is just around the corner, woohoo!* let's jump right into the new month with a new challenge from shopping our stash. this one's called "white out" by which we mean you cannot use ANY plain white paper in your project. here's what i made:

patterned paper: maggie holmes/crate, basic grey, k and co, doodlebug + vintage book paper for the letters; journal card of mysterious origins (sorry, it was out of the packet, i have no idea whence it came!); banner and "birthday" stickers: suuuuuper duuuuuper old october afternoon; 8mm pink pearl brads: eyelet outlet; ink: colorbox; adhesives: elmers brand gluetape, 3m foam tape

ok, so this card is pretty much a reminder that just because there's no white PAPER, doesn't mean there shouldn't be any white space!**  by which i mean, i really really wish that my card base was solid pink or yellow or... well... any solid color rather than the chain link gold patterned paper. but by the time i realized that, i'd already affixed the pennant with all the goodies on, and as newton's third law of adhesives states, "there shall be nothing on this earth stuck together so well as two layers of paper you've decided you hate" so, i'm livin' with it. and i do like all the other fun stuff, which are mostly raided from my "leftover bits" baggie. before you ask, no, the letters are NOT made with an awesome set of oversized alphabet dies, more's the pity. they are actually an ANCIENT set of basic grey's mini monogram chipboard letters that some how i seem to have designated as templates rather than actual ingredients, i guess because they are such an awesome size and font. i traced them on scraps of text paper and hand cut them.

head on over to SOS to see many other fabulous ideas, darlings, my lovely dt sisters await you there! ♥

*i apologize if this rash statement triggers a late blizzard of epic proportions. unless you're secretly hoping for a late blizzard of epic proportions, in which case... A) you're crazy and B) you're welcome! :)

**white space, in artistic terms, is the area in a piece that isn't filled with pattern or text; sometimes it's called negative space or breathing space. it can be any color, though, it needn't literally be white.