Giveaway #13: Sentimentally

One of the areas that most people find difficult in cardmaking (and other craft projects) is finding just the right sentiment. This giveaway is all about the sentiment. Up for grabs are two (2) brand new Stampin’ Up clear block mount stamp sets that feature a bevy of sentiments. Both of these sets are rare in that they were not generally available. One was a Hostess reward set and the other was a Sale-A-Bration bonus for spending $50 on SU! product. Now, you can have both these sets for your collection for free.

Included in this Giveaway are:

** one (1) Stampin’ Up! “Picture This” rubber stamp set (eight stamps)
** one (1) Stampin’ Up! “Whimsical Words” rubber stamp set (six stamps)
** one (1) surprise selection of sentimental embellishments and goodies


To enter this Giveaway, simply leave a comment to this post answering the following question: “What kind of cards or scrapbook pages do you generally find yourself making the most of?” Are they birthday themes? Friendship? Family? Faith? Giveaway #13 will close at 12:00 a.m. MST on Saturday, November 13, 2010. The winner will be selected by random draw of all those who have left a comment by the given deadline. Good luck to all!

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Tonality

I know recently I’ve been obsessed with Halloween and related projects. I’m actually kind of sad that after this weekend, it’s really time to move on to other holidays and projects.

For today’s card, I played with one of my favorite areas of exploration in card layout and construction: tonality. While I love bold, vivid color as much as the next person–I’ve always been fascinated with working with similar tones and tints of one color. Of course, green being my favorite color–tints and tones of greens are particular favorites for me. For this card, I wanted to explore the color family as well creating the actual and illusory use of texture. I was really happy with the way this project turned out.

The base cardstock and color is Wild Wasabi from Stampin’ Up!. The base decorative foiled cardstock mat was cut at 4″ x 5″ and is from American Craft’s “Botanique” collection. I used my SU! ticket corner punch to shape all four corners. The next two layers of the card were achieved with the use of my Cuttlebug and two of Tim Holtz’s Alterations dies from Sizzix.

The next layer (striped) was cut using the Baroque Alterations die and another piece of decorative cardstock from the “Botanique” collection. I love the multistriped tonal look with the light smattering of glitter. The final layer was a piece of SU! Whisper White cardstock that was cut with Tim Holtz’s Styled Label Alterations die. I then used a Papertrey Ink background text stamp to create the handwritten background with their Ripe Avocado ink. These two layers were adhered together with my ATG714 adhesive gun and then applied to the base layer with Stampin’ Up! Stampin’ Dimensionals.

The finishing touch was an Imaginisce paper flower in a light celery color. I capped off the petal with a floral center flatback button in celadon from Webster’s Pages. (Love these!) The card is perfect for almost any use or correspondence. Too often, I trap myself into making cards for a specific theme or event. Sometimes, it’s great to have some cards on hand that will work for almost anything.






Bones

Here’s a cute and quick Halloween card. I fell in love with this particular skeleton stamp from Tim Holtz’s Stampers Anonymous collection. I just picture this line of dancing skeletons getting ready for the big chorus line number as the witching hour approaches. (Yes, I have issues…)

The base cardstock is from the ‘Midnight Spell’ paper stack from Die Cuts With A View (DCWV). I used a 4″ x 5″ piece of Stampin’ Up! Whisper White cardstock to stamp my images on. The blood splatter, barbed wire, skeleton, skull and sentiment are all Tim Holtz red rubber cling stamps. The inks I used are Tsukineko Memento in Tuxedo Black and Papertrey Ink in Scarlet Jewel. The tissue tape embellishment is also from Tim Holtz and his Ideology “Hobgoblin” collection. ( I adore all of the tissue tape lines and highly recommend them.)






Stitched Harvest

Today’s card project is decidedly Fall in theme and feel. I originally was setting out to make a Halloween-specific card, but the more I worked with colors and paper selection–it became more vintage and retro. I originally was going to use the paper piecing (the patchwork pumpkin) to create a goofy jack-o-lantern that I was going to name Franken-Pumpkin (ergo the “stitch” marks). In the end, it is a much more muted and elegant affair–and I’m okay with that.

This is also one of the rare times I make a 6″ x 6″ card. The base cardstock (6″ x 12″) is Bazzill textured cardstock in Raven, which was scored at 6″. The scalloped portion of the sentiment is Bazzill as well. The sentiment oval is Stampin’ Up! cardstock in Peach Parfait and the base pumpkin shape is Papertrey Ink Simply Chartreuse cardstock. All of the other paper used in the construction (patchwork pieces, mat, and inside sentiment block) are from Memory Box’ “Blackbird” collection.

You really need to sketch a general pumpkin shape on a piece of heavy white cardstock to create a pattern. Here, you can decide how big you want your pumpkin to be and where you want to make the “cuts” for your patchwork pieces. After you trace your pattern shape on your base colored cardstock, you can then actually cut the pieces of your pattern out and use them as templates for your decorative paper pieces. (I hope that made sense.)

Once I picked the decorative papers I wanted to use, I cut them down to my template sizes and adhered them to my base cardstock. I highly recommend that you glue your patchwork pieces together on the base cardstock before you start worrying about punching and stitching. Once my pumpkin was together, I used a paper piercer to punch out my stitching holes. You need to think this out a bit and pay particular attention to where your stitches will intersect with one another. After my punching was complete, I used a Bazzill needle and stitching floss in a forest green color. The beginning and end stitches of my floss are simply taped to the back of my pumpkin. I used a simple stitch pattern and the results are quite effective I think. I used Stampin’ Dimensionals to adhere the finished pumpkin to my cardfront–giving it a bit more depth and interest.

Then sentiment medallion was created using Stampin’ Up! punches (oval and scalloped oval) and the actual sentiment is from a Papertrey Ink stamp set. I used Stampin’ Dimensionals again to elevate the medallion. For the inside of the card, I used an entire 6″ x 6″ block of Memory Box paper. I embellished it with the spiderweb, jack-o’-lantern, and bat using a Sakura Glaze pen in black. In this instance, I think the inside is just as fun to look at as the front.





Well, that’s it for today! I hope the air is nippy where you are (and that you have a blanket to cozy up with at night while you watch the leaves fall from the trees). I hear a Giveaway might just be on its way…hmm.

Architecturally Speaking

I’ve long been fascinated with geometric shapes. I suppose that fact–along with my love of numbers–is what led to my pursuing degrees in mathematics and economics. Beyond the intrinsic beauty of patterns and shapes that exist because of numbers, the use of those shapes and patterns in architecture, art and nature completely bowl me over. I love observing and studying the intricacy of architectural elements like columns, scrollwork, arches, porte-cochères, et al. I also have a great fondness for mosaics and tessellations.

The reason I share all of this is that the card project I’m sharing today was inspired by architecture and one geometric design in particular–the quatrefoil. The term quatrefoil literally means “four leaves”. In architecture and Christian symbolism, a quatrefoil is a symmetrical shape created by four overlapping circles of the same diameter. In more common terms, a quatrefoil is often referred to as a flower with four petals or a “four-leaf clover”. The shape was most prominent architecturally during the Gothic Revival and Renaissance. But, you can find examples in churches and cathedrals around the world today.

A while back, Stampin’ Up! introduced a stamp set, button set, and a corresponding set of three mini-punches called “Itty Bitty Shapes” (The punch set is item #118309 and sells for $16.95) . It so happened that one of the shapes (and a coordinating punch) were of the quatrefoil shape. Needless to say, I became obsessed with this punch and have explored numerous ways of creating with it. This may be the craziest in terms of sheer scope and the time involved–but I had to try it. My goal was to create a mosaic background pattern based on the quatrefoil shape. There are over 200 individual punched shapes used to create this card mat–and each one was applied and adhered by hand–one at a time. The papers used to punch out the quatrefoils were bits of scraps from Graphic 45. I didn’t want the pattern to be obvious, yet I hoped when finished it would convey a feeling of a field of flowers viewed from afar. I’m not sure I was completely successful–yet, I do love the results. I only wish you could see and feel this in person, as the photographs are truly a poor substitute.

The card mat was created by using a Zig Two-Way glue pen to mount the punched out shapes on a piece of 4″ x 5″ cardstock from Papertrey Ink in Simply Chartreuse. The mat is the obvious showpiece, so I tried to keep the embellishment to a minimum. An appropriate sentiment, sequin flower, piece of ribbon and hangtag complete the mood. I hope you like it…












In The Midnight Hour…

Inspiration is a fickle bedfellow. Sometimes, you really never know what time of the night (or early morning) he’s going to strike. Last night in between watching ‘Criminal Minds’ on my DVR and goofing with my Gypsy in bed (wait, did that sound strange?), this card just sort of magically came together. I love the cleaness, the color way and the multi-purposeness of the final design.

The design inspiration came from the Cricut ‘French Manor’ cartridge (which is an exclusive release to Cricut Circle members). I slightly modified one of the card designs (with the Hide Contour feature on the Gypsy) to simplify it a bit. The base cardstock is a mica paper from Stardream’s So…Silk! Collection in the color Fair Blue. The glitter underlayer is American Crafts glitter cardstock in Midnight Sapphire. The decorative overlayer card mat (which was cut in my Cricut Expression) is from My Mind’s Eye and their “Breaking Free” Collection (Wild Ride Hot Dots Paper). The inside sentiment block paper is from Pink Paislee.

With the sparkle added from the combination of the glitter and mica cardstocks, there wasn’t much need for additional embellishment. I did, however, add a Doodlebug Striped button which I topped with some Jenni Bowlin Powdered Sugar mini-pearls. The button was adhered with some KI Memories Gloo adhesive.