Wednesday, December 31, 2014

It's New Year's Eve

and the 5th anniversary of this blog was yesterday!  Wasn't sure I would ever start one let alone keep it up for 5 years with 700 posts to date.

I want to thank you for stopping by to see what I've been creating.  Please come back as you never know what you'll find.  It might be a card or it might be a 3-D project.  It might be clean and fairly simple or it might be dark and grungy.

It's been a typical year...full of ups and downs, curve balls and wild pitches.  But I'll carry with me all that I've learned and experienced into the new year.  I wish you much health and happiness in 2015!

Red, white, black card stock/Stampers Anonymous CMS156 Worn Text, CS154 Mini Blueprints 4/Jet Black Archival Ink/Krylon Gold Leafing Pen/Sakura Glitter Jelly Roll Pen/Sizzix mini movers &  shapers numbers

Sunday, December 28, 2014

Another pair of altered playing cards

Time for week 15 of Claudine's challenge.  The theme is embossing paste and I have quite a bit so this was a fun challenge.  Claudine chose black and white with different sprays; the difference in the results was amazing!  The Adirondack spray is more splotchy in appearance while the Dylusions sprays are more subtle.

Studio 490: black, white embossing pastes

Stampers Anonymous stamps: Mini Blueprints 7 CMS203, Christmas Nostalgia CS207, Mini  Handwritten Holidays CMS211; stencils: Festive, Christmas

Ranger: archival inks (Jet Black, Watering Can, Red Geranium): Black Fude Ball Pen; distress inks (Mowed Lawn, Peeled Paint, Forest Moss, Festive Berries, Fired Brick, Aged Mahogany); Adirondack Sprays (Lettuce, Pesto); Dylusions Sprays (Calypso Teal, London Blue, After Midnight)

Sakura:  white, glitter gelly roll pens

I'm so glad there isn't a strict time frame to complete these mini works of art.  Because of holiday happenings it took me most of the week to even get time in my art room to play.

Thursday, December 25, 2014

Merry Christmas!

 Bazzill card stock; Poinsettia Pattern embossing folder (Sizzix); Hero Arts sentiment in Jet Black Archival Ink
White card stock; Sizzix (Karen Burniston) house dies; distress inks; Hero Arts sentiment in Jet Black Archival Ink

Wednesday, December 24, 2014

Candlelight trio

These are much safer than real candles!  The entire display is approximately 9" across by 3 1/2" high.  I do have a small cardboard rectangular block behind the candles to allow them to stand upright.

Grungeboard, kraft core core'dinations, distress paints (antique linen, scattered straw, wild honey), brown distress ink, Sizzix dies (distressed doily, tattered pinecone, candlelight, holiday greens, mini poinsettia), Glossy Accents, butterscotch alcohol ink, pearls (flower centers)

Hope your Christmas is merry and bright!

Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Faux graniteware technique

Have you tried Wendy Vecchi's faux graniteware technique?  This was my first attempt on something metal and certainly won't be my last!  I found an old grungy muffin pan at the thrift store.  Cleaned it up and sanded the top just a bit.  I created masks to cover each muffin because I wanted a nice, clean rim around them.  I pounced Red Geranium Archival Ink over the top and masks then poured Red Geranium Embossing Powder over the wet ink.  After removing the excess I pulled off the masks so I could heat set the embossing powder.  Once the metal had cooled I overstamped it with the background stamp from Ticket To Art LCS001 (splatter) using Snow Cap White Pigment Ink.  Let dry.  Added my tea lights and this is now ready for one of our dining tables at Christmas.  I accent my kitchen with red so this can be left out year round.  Yay!!!


If you haven't tried this technique and love the look of granite ware but maybe can't afford to buy the vintage pieces, this is the answer!  Thank you, Wendy, for such a great idea!

Saturday, December 20, 2014

My first gingerbread house


I toasted the bread then let it air dry.  Had to use toothpicks to keep the roof on.  Not my idea but saw it on the internet.  Too fun to not share!

Thursday, December 18, 2014


14 sets and counting!  It's time for another Altered Playing Card challenge hosted by Claudine.  The theme is reindeer or Christmas.  I chose reindeer.  While I follow along with the steps and note the images she used, it's amazing how similar they can look yet so different.
Sizzix: Snowflakes texture fade; mini movers & shapers reindeer & snowflake; Ranger:  clear embossing ink; Red Embossing Tinsel, Stormy Sky distress ink; JustRite Stamps; misc card scraps
Stamps:  Mini Holidays CMS066, Mini Holidays 2 CMS096, Christmas Nostalgia CMS207, Mini Handwritten Holidays CMS211; Ranger: distress paint (Weathered Wood, Stormy Sky); Adirondack pigment inks (Juniper, Bottle, Cranberry, Espresso), clear embossing ink and powder

Following along is so pressure, small enough you can make them in a short amount of time, you try new techniques or stashed items.  Hope you decide to join in the fun!

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Happy Chanukah!

Bazzill card stock; Flurries embossing folder (TH); Hero Arts sentiment in Jet Black Archival Ink

White card stock; Sizzix (Karen Burniston) dies; distress inks; Hero Arts sentiment in Jet Black Archival Ink

Here we go a caroling....

If you've been following my blog for a while you'll know that I try hard NOT to duplicate Tim's tags (unless his idea is just so smashing and none of mine are!) so with that in mind, here's my rendition of his December tag.
If you listen carefully, you can hear the young lady in her crystal clear voice singing "We Wish You A Merry Christmas".   Do you hear the bells jingling in the background?  I love the sense of motion created by the swirls and stems at the bottom of the tag (could be snow flying around her feet).

#8 tag, kraft core, faux frosted (recycled packaging + Frosted film), distress specialty stamping paper, grungeboard; red ribbon

Ranger: distress ink (Brushed Corduroy); distress spray stains (Tarnished Brass, Festive Berries, Wild Honey); distress paint (Tarnished Brass, Festive Berries, Picket Fence); distress glitter (Rock Candy); archival ink (Potting Soil)

Advantus/Idea-ology: Industrious Stickers (Frames & Things); jump ring, token tag

Stamps: Mini Holidays 2 CMS096; Handwritten Holidays CMS211

Sizzix: Holiday Words (Block, Script); Festive Greenery; Victorian Carolers; texture fade (Sheet Music)

I, too, wish you a Merry Christmas!

Sunday, December 14, 2014

A woodlands Merry Christmas

I went all out for the current CCC#3 (check here to see what you need to do to enter) challenge using Tim's Woodlands and Tinsel Twine.  I was determined to use as many holiday dies as possible.  It took 3 photos to capture all the elements.

Don't forget there's an awesome assortment of goodies awaiting one lucky winner chosen by the Curiosity Crew and a $50 gift certificate to The Inspiration Emporium to a randomly selected winner.  These challenges are such fun and make me use the products I've acquired instead of hoarding them.  Surely I'm not the only one guilty of this!  lol

Ranger:  distress inks, embossing powders, paints, stains; clear embossing ink & powder; archival inks

Sizzix:  Old Jalopy, Prancing Deer, Reindeer Flight, Sleigh Ride, Hanging Sign (Bigz dies); deer, cardinal, pine tree (mini mover & shaker dies); Holiday Words-Script (thinlits); recycled packaging

Stampers Anonymous:  Christmas Nostalgia CMS207, Wallpaper & Wood CMS126

Hero Arts Lower Case alpha stamps

Advantus (Idea-ology):  jump rings, hitch fasteners, Woodlands, Tinsel Twine-Winter

Misc:  white gesso, watercolor paper, ribbon, Epsom Salts (snow!!!), wood dowel and fence, twine

The base is a corrugated cardboard box lid cut to size.  Watercolor paper was cut to size.  Various white and blue distress inks and paints were used to color it.  Stamp snowflake background in Shaded Lilac distress ink.  Adhered to box with double-stick tape. 

Using Sizzix die packaging I cut a tray to fit the bottom.  Painted it with white gesso and left the front bumpy.  It was adhered using double-stick tape.  Fill with Epsom Salts to resemble snow.  Even the lumps were kept.

Cut all the dies multiple times out of chipboard or grunge board.  Multi Medium (Matte) was used to adhere the layers.  Color and sand the edges.

Completed size:  6"D x 12" W x 8" H

If you haven't purchased your tree or a wreath for the front door yet, maybe you'll go to this site and feed the reindeer while you're there!  Thank you for st(h)opping!

Saturday, December 13, 2014

Make a quilt

When life throws you scraps, make a quilt!  A friend lost his mother this week.  She was a quilter so this Stampin' Up set (Quilt Quips) is perfect.  The inside says 'May your sorrows be patched and your joys quilted'.  She was a wonderful lady and will be missed by her large family and wide circle of friends.  Catherine, now you are free to quilt without hesitation.

Envelope corner
The blue background is faux denim.  The quilt blocks were stamped in Jet Black Archival Ink onto watercolor paper and colored with Derwent Watercolor pencils.  I put them on a small black square of card stock to frame them.  The sentiment was also stamped in Jet Black Archival Ink.

Friday, December 12, 2014

Reindeer cards

Here's another holiday card using more Ranger, Tim Holtz and Sizzix products.
Sizzix Christmas Background embossing folder, Prancing Deer die, mini Bow mover & shaper die; distress inks

I pounced 3 red and 3 green distress inks pads onto the embossing folder before running it through my Big Shot.  Using whatever brown distress ink was on my applicator I ran it lightly over the embossed image to tone down the stark white of the card stock.  From Bazzill card stock I die cut the deer and bow.  The bow I then colored with red distress ink and glossy accents.
There was still distress ink left on the embossing folder that I hated to waste.  I spirtzed the folder with water and ran a second piece of card stock through the Big Shot.  Again, a light run of brown distress ink to soften the white card stock.

From the die cuts I used the negatives as stencils using brown and red archival inks (so they wouldn't smear) on the corners of the envelopes.

Why do I get simple ideas like this after I've made nearly 100 of a much more difficult and time-consuming Christmas card??????

Thursday, December 11, 2014

Merry Christmas across the miles

This was such a fun card to create and make special since I noted the locations of the sender and recipient.

Studio 490 Happy Holidays stencil; TH Mini Holidays 2 CS096; TCW 410S Mini US Map; white card stock; Bazzill card stock; distress inks

The holly was stamped and colored on the corner of the envelope.  Love coordinating cards and envelopes!

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

What's the buzz?

What's the buzz?  It's all about bees for the Altered Playing Card challenge.

Studio 490 Art For You LCS093; TH  Tiny Things CMS164; Ranger: Jet Black Archival Ink, distress inks, distress paint, Glossy Accents; Hero Arts alpha; decorative papers; black, white card stock scraps; Sizzix honeycomb frameworks die
Studio 490 Busy Making Art LCS100; Ranger: Jet Black Archival Ink, distress inks, Glossy Accents; decorative papers; inside of security envelope; black card stock scrap; Sizzix honeycomb frameworks die; Sakura: Black Micron Pen, White Gelly Roll pen, Glitter Gelly Roll pen

Monday, December 1, 2014

December cards

Here are a few cards I made for birthdays and anniversaries this month.

Inspiration came from Pinterest (

Unknown double-sided card stock; white card stock; sentiment in Jet Black Archival Ink; Sizzix Retro Packages (660037)
White card stock; Bazzill card stocks; unknown black & white decorative paper; Wishes debossing folder + white pigment ink; Martha Stewart button punch; corner rounder; red fiber

Inspiration came from Pinterest. (10 Oct 2013)

Another Stamp Company sentiment in Red Geranium Archival Ink; white card stock; tan card stock; red Bazzill card stock; twine; brown card stock scraps and Sizzix Bird Branch die (657833); handheld heart hole punch

I love using Pinterest for ideas!  Some times I follow the cards rather closely, other times more for a springboard of my own ideas.