Friday, November 29, 2013

season of joy {print-inspired}

My favorite inspiration for Christmas cards this year has been Minted.  Their designs are so amazing and fresh.

I loved this card the moment I laid eyes on it:

and made my own version, using Papertrey Ink stamps:

season of joy

To give dimension, I heat-embossed some of the elements with white embossing powder and stamped the rest with a white ink onto the grey base.  I mounted the grey piece onto a white card-base.  I prefer writing inside a white card, instead of smudging a white gel pen on a dark paper (being left-handed has its challenges...)

My favorite thing about this card is that it is completely flat - so perfect for mailing!

Have a great weekend, all.


Thursday, November 28, 2013

happy thanksgiving!

It's just an ordinary Thursday for me today, but if you are celebrating Thanksgiving today then this little post is just for you.

Be sure to:

  • wear stretchy pants
  • starve yourself until the big meal
  • don't start with anything alcoholic after point no. 2
  • dig in without guilt 
  • don't forget the wishbone

If you have a little bit of downtime today, I'm rounding up some of my favorite Just ME thanksgiving projects:

- yummy thanksgiving cookie place-cards (at least I got pictures before my brother-in-law chomped into each and every cookie. bah.)
- a chalkboard thank you, using florals and christmas stamps
- you are sweet as pie. i mean it.
- be sure to count your many blessings today...
- and make it about more than just the food.


Wednesday, November 27, 2013

no peeking.

This Friday marks the last of my 8 weeks of card classes, but I'm still playing catch-up to share all of the Christmas cards we crafted.

I love this Mama Elephant set so much that we created this card in two different classes, with only a slight variation.  The inky fingers were too much for the ladies when they created this version:

no peeking.

I used a stencil, sponging red ink onto a kraft card-base.  And, I'd like to point out: no sponged edges anywhere on this card. so weird. ha.

no peeking.

Santa's such a tease.


Tuesday, November 26, 2013

deerie me, it's almost December.

'tis the season, deer.

Have you taken out any Christmas decorations yet?  I know most Americans wait until after Thanksgiving (ours was back in October).  I usually like to wait until early December, but that doesn't stop me from ogling new decorations.

My husband is appalled that I have my eye on this, from Target:

or this one, from the WFT shop (Etsy):

Until I can talk my husband into letting me buy one of these beauties, I decided to whip up a stag-inspired card:

'tis the season, deer.

I stamped the entire card base with the oh-so-cozy "fair isle backgrounds" from Wplus9.  The reindeer was isolated from *this* silhouette file.  The scarf was hand-drawn using a copic multiliner and stamped with the cutest tiny greeting.

'tis the season, deer.

And glittered antlers never hurt nobody.


Monday, November 25, 2013

To flash or not to flash? and a house-shaped tag.

Hi friends!

I had bigger plans for the PTI blog hop, I really did, but things (read: basement renovations and a packed weekend) interfered.  Nonetheless, I managed to print out the template and use part of it to create a Christmas tag.

Now, here's the question.  Do you like the photo better without flash:

to flash or not to flash?

or with:

to flash or not to flash?

they are both taken within about 5 minutes of each other, in daylight and without any different lighting, save for the bounced flash.  I'm trying to decide which version I like better.

Without flash, the photo is softer and more moody - which is almost always my preference, but the with-flash photo is so bold and bright.  As the days become darker in the winter months, I may have to resort more and more to using my flash.  It happens every year.

If you are curious about my gear, here is a link to my (rolls eyes) huge splurge - the lightscoop.  A real bounce flash was not in my budget, but I have used and loved my 25$ lightscoop for years now.  If you have very large rooms, or extremely high ceilings, this is not the product for you, but it works perfectly fine for me.

The tag came together very simply: I printed Nichole's template and chopped off everything but this one shape.  You are supposed to fold in the corners to make a pointy roof, but I kept it even less fussy by refusing to add extra steps.  A few scallops for a roof, a rectangle of red cardstock for a door, a stamped sentiment (from Bells & Boughs) and a Christmas wreath (from Clear and Simple's Rag Doll House.)

I hope you like it!


Friday, November 22, 2013

we'd all love some figgy pudding - and a free download.

My students made this card last Friday:

we'd all love some figgy pudding

I used Papertrey Ink's big cupcake die and holly jolly dies to create my figgy pudding.  My students had the good sense to ask for some glitter spray - I have to admit they one-upped my design. ha.

The sentiment and banner were created using the Silhouette software.  I downloaded a banner shape, and led my text to follow a set of curved lines.  Print and cut is such a delightful software feature.  I'm not sure how I ever lived without it.

Would you like to download your own sheet of figgy pudding banners?  If you don't have a silhouette, you can just print and hand-cut the simple shapes.  I think this would make a very cute card set.  Click *here* to right click and save the figgy pudding PDF.

I'm entering this card into the Festive Friday challenge, something sweet:

Happy weekend!


Wednesday, November 20, 2013

let it snow {lawn fawn + thermoweb week}

Here's the deal.  I'm lamely typing this post without using my left index finger. It's awkward.  I lopped off a chunk with my guillotine paper-cutter yesterday.  I can't be the only one who's ever done this, right?  I blame it on the child.  Maia yelled something and I jumped - jumped and twisted slightly and brought down the blade. sigh.  The best part was when I called my hubby to tell him what happened: he asked if I was ok, and then quickly (too quickly) inquired about my project... if I had ruined it with blood smear.  I have trained him well... hee.

So, without any real segueway, here's my fawnie+thermoweb project:

let it snow {lawn fawn + thermoweb week}

If this card looks a little familiar, it's because it is!  I took heavy inspiration from a treat packaging that my fellow fawnie Yainea made, published in the pages of a recent Paper Crafts mag:

I am constantly wowed by what Cristina creates - my card is a nod to her amazing talent.

I switched up the fox for the bunny (mostly out of extreme laziness: the bunny has a matching die) and added patterned paper to the background.  The thermoweb 3D foam squares and zots came in very handy.

let it snow {lawn fawn + thermoweb week}

The red banner is my fave.


Tuesday, November 19, 2013

no-line coloring {lawn fawn + thermoweb week}

Lawn Fawn and Thermoweb are partnering this week to bring you all kinds of fun inspiration.

no-line coloring

I used the no-line coloring technique on the reindeer from critters in the snow.  I won't pretend to know what I'm doing, but I know I'll be asked about which colors I used (ha) so here they are:

  • to ink up the reindeer: I used memento brown ink, stamped off twice onto scrap paper first.
  • for the antlers: E000 (I shaded with the same color)
  • for the reindeer's body, I used whatever brown I could: E11, E13, E15, E59, E79
  • for his reindeer nose: R24, R29, R59
  • and to draw in his eyes and mouth: copic multiliner, 0.3mm

As for the rest of the card, I created a wreath with the leafy image from peace, joy, love and used a thermoweb zot to adhere a little bow at its base.

The reindeer stands out with the help of foam squares.

no-line coloring

To ground my reindeer panel, I stamped a woodgrain background onto black paper and adhered it all to a white card base.

I hope you like it!  I'll be back tomorrow with another fawnie+thermoweb project.


Monday, November 18, 2013

ridiculously simple packaging.

I have taken to packaging the card kits for my Friday classes a little differently every week.  I always want them to look nice and festive - it's the first thing my students see when they sit down to craft - but I don't want to spend hours creating something that will be ripped into within 30 seconds.

This packaging is ridiculously simple, and so classic:

card kit packaging

A belly band of polka dot paper, some cozy red yarn for texture, and embossed chalkboard tags.

I'm thinking this style would be awesome for Christmas gifts,if I cut strips of a coordinating wrapping paper and created "belly bands" long enough to wrap around the big boxes... what do you think?

card kit packaging

The tags came together so quickly with just a bit of white embossing for the tag outline and sentiment, and a punch of green embossing for the one of the two trees.  I smudged on a healthy amount of white ink at the end, to play up the chalkboard style.  (full disclosure: wow makes my favorite embossing powder, but I only have it in white.  I settled on zing for my green.  The coverage is just okay for me, and I obviously put the best tree at the front of the pack.  I also used zing for my gold embossing *here* and while I love the card, the uneven coverage bothers me.)

This is my offering for the current lawnscaping challenge, which begins today.  I hope you'll play along!

And no, I didn't mean to coordinate my polka dots with the ones in the inspiration photo. ha.

We're being sponsored by lawn fawn:


Friday, November 15, 2013

Our hearts are big enough - real relief for the Philippines.

We have seen the images. We have heard the news. We know that the Philippines, this country on the other side of the world, has been hit by tragedy.  Typhoon Haiyan tore apart many of its regions a week ago.

We can help.  Here is how:

You give, and you get. Because we appreciate you.

Destiny International Ministries has had the privilege of being in relationship with ministers in the Philippines for many years now.  100% of donations being collected right now will go directly to indigenous relief workers for the purpose of rebuilding home and feeding the population of two of the hardest hit regions: Bohol and Mindanao.  In the even that enough donations are collected to meet all of the primary needs of these communities, be reassured that many other communities are waiting in the wings.  Not a single penny will be unappreciated.

Tanya Zaleski Photocreations, Just Me Prints (that's me!), and Lost Bumblebee graphics have partnered together to offer your choice of one of three FREE printable calendars with a donation of any amount to Destiny International Ministries earmarked for the Philippines.

Here is a preview of the collection of images I'm offering:

 To see the other collections, find out WHY they are digital, read more details about our fundraiser, and be able to donate, please visit Tanya's blog *here*

With all of my heart, I hope you will think about donating.  No amount is too small.


Thursday, November 14, 2013

have a merry and *foxy* christmas.

A little teaser for this Friday's card class:

merry *foxy* christmas

I stamped the tag onto the white cardstock piece, and then again onto the "merry" die-cut.  (I cut the word "merry" out of white cardstock using the cameo silhouette and then used a green marker to add color... I love how it looks like more of a "watery" green - as opposed to if I had cut it out of green cardstock.  It almost looks stamped!)

I colored and fussy-cut the fox and the hole-reinforcer and added them on top.

merry *foxy* christmas

I hope you like it (especially if you're scheduled to come over on Friday evening!)


Wednesday, November 13, 2013

a very girly xmas.

It's lawn fawn's holiday inspiration week!

I tried to break out of my regular kraft/red/white/green christmas card colors... but this is what happens when Sofia is crafting next to me and giving me 'suggestions':

a very girly xmas.

Ha.  we're 20 shades of pink and grey with this card.  I used that snowfall stencil stencil again, with the embossing paste and some glitter.  I'm obsessed.  The making frosty friends snow-girl is resting atop her mountain of shimmery pink snow, with only the girliest of little birdies for companions.

I hope you like it! Sofia already claimed this one for her home-room teacher.


Tuesday, November 12, 2013

diy elf on the shelf

I am so excited to share this post with you! Actually, I was so excited to share the idea with Nicki (from Clear and Simple Stamps) and it just so happens that they've released a rag doll elf stamp set, so I'm thrilled to be able to partner with CSS one more time.

diy elf on the shelf

When I first received the rag doll dies, I immediately thought beyond plush dolls, all the way to Christmas crafting.  I wanted to make my very own elf-on-the-shelf.  Because let's face it, the *official* one is a bit creepy.  My version is cuddly and soft and oh-so-cute.

diy elf on the shelf

My friend Deb and I (of Sprouting Jube Jube fame) crafted our matching dolls together.  I highly recommend crafting with friends.  The giggling and squealing over every bit of the dolls made it so worth the night out.

Using the dies, I made some alterations to the shape of the rag doll.  Firstly, the doll's arms and legs are extra long.  To do this, I ran the dies through the machine up to a point and then continued cutting them by hand to the desired length.

diy elf on the shelf

The doll's pointy ears were free-handed - aren't they so cute? And the hat and scarf were re-purposed from a pair of men's socks.  You could see a bit of the heel of the sock, where I gathered it to attach my handmade pom-pom.

diy elf on the shelf

Deb did an amazing job of whipping up a pair of overalls for each of our dolls:

diy elf on the shelf

When the kids get their elf for the first time, at the beginning of December, they will receive a note, complete with Santa's seal of approval...

diy elf on the shelf

...and an introduction from the big man himself:

diy elf on the shelf

I hope you liked my handmade elf!  I can't wait to see what mischief he gets into in December!


Saturday, November 9, 2013

Moxie fab thanks! blog hop

Some people are just electric.  You can see it in their ability to touch and move people, to inspire, and to challenge.

Today, we are blog hopping to honor the most electric lady in the paper-crafting community: Cath Edvalson.  The moxie fab world blog has a list of close to 300 bloggers who are joining together to tip their hats to a lady with extraordinary style and heart.  Isn't that amazing?

If you are following the hop list, you should have clicked over from fellow-Canadian-and-amazingly-talented Pamela's blog.

moxie fab thanks! blog hop

Cath, you will be so missed.  Even if others take over the Moxie Fab World blog, they will never do it with the same flair.  You have such an eye for what's hot, and my favorite was always the "oh my moxie fab" posts.  I always lit up when it turned out you posted something I had already pinned.  hee hee.  like, I was fab too, in that moment.

moxie fab thanks! blog hop

Your next stop is to the always fabulous Lorena's blog.


Friday, November 8, 2013

be merry! {reverse confetti blog hop}

Welcome to the Reverse Confetti blog hop!  The hop started back at the Reverse Confetti blog and you should have hopped over from Lisa's blog.  All of the new releases are in the store right now, including their brand new dies!

With Christmas right around the corner (eeee!) "bring on the merry" has you covered on the sentiment side.  I shared my "bring on the merry" gift wrap earlier this week, and now a card is in order:

be merry {reverse confetti blog hop}

I cut into the center of my cardstock piece with a snowman die, and stamped merry greetings to cover the entire space.  The outlined "merry" really pops, doesn't it?  By the way, if the slightly crooked greetings bother you, you could always have a ruler handy and stamp everything out really straight, but I love handmade to look handmade, so I eye-balled everything. I could see making this into a really cute card set, complete with little snowman tags.  I think I just talked myself into it, hee.

be merry {reverse confetti blog hop}

I added the snowman's arms and dotted glossy accents and a swipe of white highlighting to his buttons to finish things off.

I hope you like it - your next stop on this hop is Val's blog.  I'd like to end off with a huge thank you to Jen for asking me to guest with Reverse Confetti this month!


Thursday, November 7, 2013

dashing through the snow...

dashing through the snow...

I'm throwing my hat in the ring for the embossing challenge over at CAS-ual Fridays.  Gold embossing everywhere!

I started out by rubbing versamark ink all over *this* snowfall stencil.  I am having a serious love affair with that stencil.  Once it was peeled back, I was able to throw gold embossing powder over the card and heat it up.

dashing through the snow...

More of the same for the sentiment and one horse open sleigh image.  I used ZING embossing powder, but I have to admit that I'm not thrilled with the coverage on the sleigh.  I think I prefer WOW powders, but I don't have that brand in gold.

I hope you like it!  If you are joining this Friday's in-my-home-card-class, I really hope you like it - you'll be crafting one of your very own.


Wednesday, November 6, 2013

sweet baby {rock chalk baby blog hop}

Welcome to our "rock chalk baby blog hop" - whatever that means... I know it's something to do with college sports, right? ha.  (This clueless Canadian obviously had nothing to do with naming the hop or creating the badge, hee hee.)  

You should have hopped over from Debbie's blog, but if you want to see a full list of participants, click over to JJ's blog.

The Gallery Idol girls (2012 edition) are hopping for a virtual baby shower in Erin's honor.

My waddling friend, your days of struggling to shave your legs and breathing heavily when you pick something up off the floor are almost at an end.

Soon, you will be looking into your sweet baby's face and wondering at the life that you have already loved for the last 9 months.  I'll never forget the excitement within our group, when you shared your amazing pregnancy news with us.  We're so happy to be able to celebrate you and your sweet boy:

sweet baby {rock chalk baby blog hop}

I exclusively have Christmas crafting on the brain, and I figured that there have already been some frosty mornings here, so a little teddy-in-a-snowglobe might not be such a weird thing *wink* For the record, there is no snow in the globe - it's all stars and a moon.  I saw something similar at Hallmark once and it stuck with me.

I hope you like it, Erin!  Sending you hugs and prayers for a safe delivery (full of epidural numbness, ha) and a beautiful, healthy baby boy.

The next stop on this baby hop is Heather.


Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Bring on the merry {reverse confetti sneak peek}

 I'm thrilled to be guesting with Reverse Confetti today (and for their release day on Friday as well!) to show off their new set, "Bring on the Merry."

"Bring on the merry" is such a great sentiment set - perfect for mixing and matching on holiday cards....and gift wrap:

bring on the merry {reverse confetti sneak peek}

I wrapped a gift in kraft packing paper (I always buy a huge roll from Staples) and then cut a thinner strip to create a belly band in the middle.  I stamped "have yourself a merry little Christmas and a happy new year" to wrap all around the gift.  A huge paper bow makes the present all ready for the giving.  I really love this look - that outlined "merry" is just begging to be colored in, isn't it?  Just wait until Friday, hee hee.

There will be a 15$ gift certificate up for grabs during the sneak peeks.  Be sure to leave comments on all of the designers' blogs (you have until noon - CST time - on November 7th) and a winner will be chosen at random and announced later that day.


Monday, November 4, 2013

candy-striped noel {lawnscaping challenge}


Ready? Set? Go - for another lawnscaping challenge!  For a change, make the sentiment the focus of your card.


This design would be great for making 50 times over.  Change the scrapbook paper in the background for some variation, and voila! all of your Christmas cards created in one afternoon...

I hope you join us this week:

We're being sponsored by Simon Says Stamp: