Friday, July 31, 2009

International Cupcake

Well, I missed a day or two in blog-world. That's not good! What to ramble on about many topics so little time! I could babble about Farm Town (a Facebook app), corn-on-the-cob, BLT's (really????....a RECIPE for BLT's...and I thought I couldn't cook!), endearing reasons why I like my job, crunch-time at work, dreams of being on a card design team, thoughts on being a college dorm floor 'parent', blog hops, continue the TOC (Transfer of Crap) saga, or explain the fundamental differences between genetic ToC and humanitarian ToF (Transfer of Fabric).

Let's see - I choose……..
Facebook and the Farm Town app. I first got started on Facebook because a trustee on the board of directors at my place of employment added me as a Facebook friend. At the time I was aware of Facebook - but the extent of my awareness was flimsy at best. How could I tell a trustee, "No, I don't want to be your 'friend'"? I was actually pleased she asked me, so naturally I 'Googled' my way into this massive online social network and set up my account. For about 6 months I had 1 (ONE) Facebook friend. I would occasionally log in to check up on my singular friend. That was the extent of my socializing via the www.

I frequently have students stopping by my office. My office seems to be a gathering place between classes, after classes, and sometimes long after the time I should even still be IN my office. They stop by for chats, for candy, for laughs, for all kinds of “college-kid” things. Frequently there is an entire 'gang' in my office - some on chairs, some sitting on the floor - and usually one of them logged in to the student computer.

One day they (freshmen) were discussing Facebook. I asked a question about Facebook. They looked at me in amazement, "Nancy – YOU’RE on Facebook????" (What do I look like...Grandma Moses, Maxine of Hallmark fame, the ‘little Mrs’. in Grant Wood's American Gothic????) I indignantly replied. “YES, I’m on Facebook! I even have a FRIEND on Facebook!” After the peals of laughter – I’m not sure what they thought was funnier – the fact that I had a Facebook account or that I had a Facebook friend or that I only had ONE Facebook friend! Well they answered my question and all logged into the computer to ‘add’ me as their friend. So…I now have several student Facebook friends! I could go on and on about this subject but I have to now get to the Farm Town portion of this monologue.

Miss Amy introduced me to Farm Town. I reluctantly added the application. [She had already forced me at dagger point (kidding) to join her Pirate crew – a PIRATE??? Me??? But, hey…. it was Miss Amy – so of course I did my best, “sure me matey – shiver me timbers, and all that rot!”] I occasionally and reluctantly performed my pirate duties to keep Miss Amy at bay – but Farm Town???? I LOVE Farm Town! I have whole-heartily traded ‘me peg-leg’ for seeds and a scythe! I could very possibly be addicted to Farm Town!

I have a secret desire to get to a higher farming level than my sister-in-law, one of my Farm Town ‘neighbors’, I NEEDED more ‘neighbors’ so I asked a couple of STUDENTS to be my ‘neighbors’ (they laughed at me – Farm Town is evidently NOT college cool! – but they did it anyway – and guess what - now they are HOOKED TOO!!), I even admit to reading Farm Town Q&A’s and tips!!! Is it this Midwestern blood coursing through my veins? Is it the gardening that I can do and not break a sweat? What is it about Farm Town????

NOW – there really IS a point to all this. Tonight I was ‘in’ the Farm Town marketplace. I randomly clicked on another ‘farmer’ to harvest some of my crops. Farmer Paula agreed to harvest for me. I ‘told’ her (in chat) that I didn’t know what to click or how to enable her to also ‘plow’ for me and she chatted back that she asked her daughter how to do it. I replied – “my daughter is who taught me how to ‘farm’”, we both had a virtual laugh and she informed me that her daughter informed HER that you have to have 10 ‘neighbors’ to use the plow function. I replied, “darn, I’m one neighbor short’. She ‘said’, “ add me as your friend” and before I could mentally process “oh my – now what do I do – this is weird!”, she inserted her email address!!!!!

I saw that the email address was a UK extension. So…. I replied – “COOL – you will be my first international Facebook friend!” Then SHE replied (probably after thinking – OMG what did I just do?), where ARE you?” I chatted, “IOWA, where some SERIOUS farming goes on”!

So guess what?? I now have an international Facebook friend! Not only that but during our chat – she ‘laughed’ that when she asked her daughter the plowing question, her daughter was actually sitting across from her in the same room and they were both on Facebook Farm Town. Now, not only is Paula my new best Facebook friend but so is her daughter! I think I’m looking forward to this new long-distance ‘friendship’.

Now I don’t want to hear from any of you asking how I could waste my time on Farm Town – cuz YOU just waste a HUGE chunk of time reading THIS!

I do have to mention ONE little item regarding ToC. Today I received an email from Sista G. Evidently now friend NILA is adding to the pile designated as the 'Sioux City Basket' (a.k.a. ToC).

And of course I have a card to share. Drum roll please……… Number three in the Cupcake Card Series! You can get up close with the card by clicking on the image.

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Oscar the Grouch and Cupcakes

I hit a cardstock wall tonight. Just couldn't decide what to do - so just decorated and cut out individual cupcakes. That, of course, would be CARDSTOCK cupcakes not REAL cupcakes.
You MAY be surprised to read that I actually WILL be making REAL cupcakes eventually.

I'm a 'dorm mom' on for one of the residence halls on the college campus where I work. I've been a '4th floor mom' to 50+ (mostly) freshman for several years! Some years the floor is co-ed, last year it was all girls (I should say young women). Every semester we have a 'naked cupcake night'. Let me explain... We (myself and the other 4th floor mom's) bake LOTS of cupcakes. We take the cupcakes, lots of frosting, and several choices of toppings (sprinkles, candies, colored sugar, etc) up to the 4th floor student lounge. All the 4th floor 'kids' come running - and spend an evening decorating cupcakes. They have a blast! It is so much fun watching them. Some of them decorate their own cupcake and eat it right there on the spot. Some of them just want to sit and decorate cupcake after cupcake. Some of them only eat the cupcakes. Girls and guys - they all have fun on 'naked cupcake night'.

The first time we had cupcake night - the floor moms made and decorated the cupcakes - then a couple of the students said something about loving to decorate cupcakes back at home with moms and grandmas. So we surrogate 'moms' thought - why not let the kids do the decorating.

It's a little taste of home for students far from home.

Now let's talk card!
Inspired by Oscar (the Grouch not de la Renta). The Res-Q-Challenge is just so cute!
The challenge was to be inspired by the Sesame Street Song, by Oscar the Grouch, ‘I Love Trash’. Here are the lyrics:

Oh, I love trash!Anything dirty or dingy or dustyAnything ragged or rotten or rusty
Yes, I love trash

I have here a sneaker that's tattered and worn
It's all full of holes and the laces are torn
A gift from my mother the day I was born
I love it because it's trash

Oh, I love trash!
Anything dirty or dingy or dusty
Anything ragged or rotten or rusty
Yes, I love trash

I have here some newspaper thirteen months old
I wrapped fish inside it; it's smelly and cold
But I wouldn't trade it for a big pot o' gold!
I love it because it's trash

Oh, I love trash!
Anything dirty or dingy or dusty
Anything ragged or rotten or rusty
Yes, I love trash

I've a clock that won't work
And an old telephone
A broken umbrella, a rusty trombone
And I am delighted to call them my own!
I love them because they're trash

Oh, I love trash!
Anything dirty or dingy or dusty
Anything ragged or rotten or rusty
Yes, I love, I love, I love trash!

What a FUN challenge!!!!!!
I used lots of ‘trash’ (AKA treasures) used on this one!
~Base card is a recycled file folder (outside color dark teal – inside olive green). Edges smudged with black.
~Next is a layer of BasicGrey-Recess – on this I embossed using VersaMark, Ranger Distress Embossing Powder-Black Soot and SU! It’s About Time.
~Image layers: torn black hand-made paper, torn rust color hand-made paper, torn layer of aqua mulberry paper, torn layer of beige color mulberry paper, torn piece of OLD book, torn image of rotary dial phone from mini gift card from Tri-Coastal Design – edges smudged with Tim Holtz Distress Ink ( Old Paper & Vintage Photo).
~Ribbon area: Layer of same base card (folder) twill ribbon – smudged with Tim Holtz Distress Ink (Fired Brick, Old Paper, Vintage Photo). Swirly brad has grosgrain brown and black ribbon, three colors of twisted wire, aqua colored sheet ribbon, and three different types of jute/cording.
You can get up close with the card by clicking on the image.

Monday, July 27, 2009

Inspiration from a BHG magazine - Really???

The weekend challenge at SplitcoastStampers was to get inspired by looking at a few room layout in a recent Better Homes and Garden. I scrolled through the choices and rather than get inspired by a room design I keyed in on a pillow. I really like throw pillows and I really really like buttons. so this pillow was just aching to be made into a card.

The gals over at Stampin B Design Team also posted a challenge to creat a 'tall' card using no stamps. This qualifies! So BINGO - one card two challenges! Is that cheating? Well the card took TWO days to complete so....does that count?

I should probably mention - that while I really like fabrics - I ONLY sew straight lines, only make quilts. Garments, curtains, pillows??? No way in God's Green Earth! This is the closest I will come to making a 'pillow'.

I started with a circle punch from white cardstock 1 11/16. Then i punched and punched and punched very small dots from a pattern paper. The pattern paper - kind of a dark salmon color with mildly lime tiny dots is from the 'Wild Asparagus' stack from MME. I started in the center of the white cardstock then individually glued every salmon colored punch dot down in a circular pattern working toward the outside. I decided to use paper punches instead of buttons like on the pillow - as the card would cause a mail carrier hernia had I used all the buttons it would have required. The stems were hand cut and smudged with ink. The border is a coordinating salmon colored paper from the 'Wild Asparagus' collection.
School starts SOON. The days are getting busier and more hectic. Where did the summer go?
Miss B is coming to my office at 6:30 in the morning. Poppy has salon day with Memere Old. Miss B will sleep on the love seat in my office for a time - them Poppy will come pick her up. I'm lucky to have such flexibility at work.
You can get up close with the card by clicking on the image.

Sunday, July 26, 2009

Gotta' love those designers who create for both fabric & paper

Darn! Not much time for cards this weekend! Omaha yesterday - delivered the "I told you I can't cook soup" to sissy Gail. Went to a simly lovely wedding in Gretna. Helped Miss B make fleece blankets. (Get ready family members - she is bent on making everyone a 'menk' (fleece blankie) for Christmas!) Spent today at work! Squeezed in a little Facebook (and Farmtown) time. Ican't believe I spend time on Facebook - but alas, I do. It's even HARDER to believe I waste card time on Farmtown. I guess sometimes I just need a mind-numbing break - Farmtown qualifies. Even though I had very little time for cardmaking I did managed to get a few things done. I stamped and colored in SEVERAL cupcakes - gotta' get movin' on the cupcake card series! I also got started on an Inspiration Challenge from SplitcoastStampers.
Here is the card for today - it is stamp-less. Used design paper only. Amy Butler - for K&Co. She designs quilt fabric too! (My passions are merging.)
Two layers of buttons, some DMC floss (a product of ToC I might add), and a dimesional metallic chipboard butterfly from the Dollar Tree. That's all for today!
You can get up close with the card by clicking on the image.

Friday, July 24, 2009

Not So Faded Glory

Just a card tonight. No rambling on and on. Wedding tomorrow in Gretna, NE. Now why didn't I make a wedding card? I saw a BEAUTIFUL one on Splitcoast this evening using the flower powder stuff (can you tell I don't have any cuz' I don't know the name of it) but it is too late to start a card now. Gonna have to put flower powder stuff on the wish list now! The card, by Katie R was AMAZING.

This Card Ingrediants:

~Base card is a light blue Bazzill texture

~Blue star layer is Miss Elizabeth from the $Tree

~Garment tag rescued from the trash! The tag ‘Faded Glory’ from Walmart. The cardstock is heavy and I like the weathered barn red and old gold crackle. I added a side piece of vanilla confetti cardstock smudged with pastels to make to word ‘glory’ pop a bit. I covered the word along the bottom right vertical side with a piece of navy cardstock , smudged it up a bit, and added three tan eyelets. On the pre-printed circle (top right) – I added three small silver brads, diagonally, to cover up the 1976 so that it read “genuine brand est. brad, brad, brad.”

~The ‘freedom’ medallion I purchased at the $Tree. I was reluctant to purchase it (yes even though it was only one dollar and came with three other 3D’s) because the white of the image was tooooo white. But today knew I wanted to finally put them into service. Before I could make myself use these I dulled up the white areas with tea staining and added water based varnish coats. The medallion is strategically place over some Faded Glory text advertising!

~The larger star was cut using a fiscars die cutter. I used a pattern paper for the star and since it was kinda flimsy I gave it a coat of Crackle Accents.

~I added three button stars threaded with twine

~Several types of jute and cord were used at the top

You can get up close with the card by clicking on the image.

Sista G - get ready for 'the soup' I'm bringing it - broccoli and all - tomorrow!

Thursday, July 23, 2009

It's Green...

I know…you are ALL waiting to hear about the soup. Hmmmm let’s see…do I make a complete confession or just say – it was ‘okay’? Well as ‘they’ say confession is good for the soul so here goes. However, as I contemplate, laying out the truth I am forced to remember that where I come from confession USED to be between one man (gnarled old priest) and one scared school aged kid. Hey! Have you ever noticed how similar the past tense of scar and scare are???? Coincidence? I think NOT. And rather than this confession be between me, Father What’s His Sandal, and the GUY upstairs…this confession is out there for the www to see. Oh well – everyone who really knows me knows I can’t cook and rarely follow directions!

Well, Mr. Man (AKA husband) transcribed the ingredient list from the magazine to his handy-dandy notebook (Blues Clues anyone?) An uneventful trip to the grocery store; items in the bag placed on the counter and I’m ready!

I follow the directions intently…this is serious business! I’m chopping, I’m browning, I’m sautéing, I’m COOKING!!!! I’m also VERY happy that about the instructions stating that the frozen spinach can be added while still frozen.

Finally – mission accomplished and soup is simmering.

As it was gently simmering I would return to the bubble and work on a card. I wasn’t paying much attention to what I was stirring – I was too swept up in the whole, “look at me! I’m cooking!!!!”

So… when I finally LOOKED at my brew… I had to take a double look, then a triple look, then a trip to the trash can. Yes!!!!! There in the trash is a frozen vegetable wrapper…it is green, it is chopped…it is BROCCOLI not the spinach the recipe called for….

Bottom line? I can’t even tell you how the soup is SUPPOSED to taste.

There you have it – my confession and the reason why I DON’T COOK!

Oh yes….Mr. Man? I had him check his ‘handy dandy list’. He said, “really? Well…it was green, it was chopped…it was close…”

Okay time for a card RECIPE. This was a sketch challenge from SplitcoastStampers. (SC238)
~Cherry is Hero Arts Cupcake clear stamp
~Red buttons
~Cherry ribbon from Michael’s dollar bin (Unlike my cooking debacle - these really are cherries NOT broccoli.)

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Soup Update

I know you are ALL waiting to hear about the soup. Well there is a story to the soup but it is too late for me to get into it right now. If I understood the concept of brevity I would tell you in a few quick words. But this soup has a story to tell, a story in a true I Love Lucy fashion - there is a story to the soup. Unfortunately the story is too long to begin tonight. I can tell you this:

There are two components to the soup story. 1. I believe that IF I had followed directions.... 2. I should have listened to the little voice in my head telling me to go to the grocery store myself and NOT sent dear hubby I sent hubby to store – now usually this isn’t an issue – he normally sticks to purchasing what is on the list. Do NOT however expect him to think outside the list. If there is only one slice of bread and one cup of milk remaining – he will not purchase those items, even if he is cognizant of the meager quantities, if the items are not ON THE LIST. Why this phenomenon? I have several theories and I’ll just leave it at that for now. (Remind me sometime and I will explain my theory along with other syndromes – such as ‘look and see’, and ‘does doing the dishes REALLY include wiping counters'.

So I promise I will finish telling you the soup tale...tomorrow. In honor of the soup the card I am uploading is a drying rack of herbs.... Just a simple little card - no story worth blabbering on and on about...THANK goodness y'all are sayin' 'bout now.

You can get up close with the card by clicking on the image.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

I Scream for Cupcakes

Cupcake card number 2. I'm planning a mini-series of cupcake themed card. How many are in a series?
~Heathered Orange base card
~Olive green layer is BasicGrey
~Cupcake and ice cream treats attached to navy cardstock
~Small rectangle of strip is layered on navy - loop brad from Oriental Trading - has ribbons attached
~The green layer, strip and ice cream all from BasicGrey cupcake paper pad.
~Image from Hero Arts cupcake. Cupcake stamped with Memento colored with watercolor pencils. Dots of Stickles added to frosting, Blue flower on top colored in with watercolor pencils. The center of the flower is a red glitter dimensionals, I punched the image with a circular punch and blackened the edge. Circle attached to square of base layer of color and adhered with dimensional to rise it up a bit.
You can get up close with the card by clickin on the image.

Cookin' & Cupcakes

My long-distance family won’t believe this but I actually cooked today. Was I in touch with my cooking muse? Not a chance – she left me LONG ago. (Not even sure I ever had a cooking muse.)

I was inspired by the ToC. (For non-family members that acronym stands for an apparent familial genetic inheritance ‘discovered’ by my daughter. ‘Transfer of Crap’ is the barely tolerated, yet endured, tradition of Transferring ‘stuff’ (crap) within family members – and to their horror and amazement - some select outsiders. We (lovingly of course) are saying to each other, “Here I don’t want this crap in my house anymore – YOU take it”.

Tradition mandates that the receiver of crap graciously accepts the crap and then has permission to do whatever they see fit! The GIVER of the crap can live in a fantasy world, content with the fact that the crap is no longer taking up space and that the crap has gone to a happy home! The RECEIVER of the crap may actually put the ‘treasures’ to use or they are free to continue the cycle of ToC, or stop at the nearest dumpster and make a deposit.

The GIVER should NEVER interrogate the RECEIVER about the status of the ‘treasures’ (AKA crap), however, the RECEIVER is allowed to tell the GIVER of any items that have been put to use. One some occasions the RECEIVER MAY be deceptive and tell the GIVER – “oh THAT! LOVE it – use it every day!!!” (We put the lies in families?!?)

Now…where was I??? AHHHHHH yes….the reason for my surprising venture into the kitchen!

Last ToC from Sista G included Penzey’s recipe magazines (she ‘transferred these to me knowing FULL well – I DON’T cook. If you are wondering why I would accept RECIPES since I don't cook, please refer to clarification above. I thumbed through the mags and found a soup recipe that was compelling enough for me to attempt. (I know – soup???? In SUMMER????) Hey – when I’m moved to cook – I cook what moves me! The 10 minute prep time in addition to the ingredients is what caught my attention!

The recipe is for Tomato Basil Soup. It is simmering right now and smells delicious! I may be ‘transferring’ a sample back to Sissy G this weekend!

Wow all that and my real purpose of this post was to upload my most recent card! Sorry….I digressed….

This is the first in a planned series of cupcake cards.
Here is the cupcake ‘recipe’:
~The base card is an off-center fold pre-printed hot pink with matching envelope
~Layer of yellow cardstock
~Layer of candles design paper from Michael’s
~The strip behind the cupcake is decorative tape from Oriental
~Image is from Hero Arts
~I colored the cupcake ‘paper’ with watercolor pencils
~The top of the cupcake – I used Conte’ pastel and then used my finger to ‘smear’ the color
~The white highlights on the pink frosting is enhanced with appliqué pen and Stickles assorted colors
~The candle was cut separately and added with a dimensional. I colored it in with Conte’ pastels and yellow stickles for the flame
~The sentiment I stamped with black – then used Conte’ pastel – pink, yellow, lime, orange, and purple – then ‘smeared’ them together – also cut it with scallop edger scissors and attached it with a dimensional
I will report on the soup tomorrow!
P.S. I have received some totally awesome treasures as a result of the ToC!

You can get up close with the card by clicking on the image.

Keep it Simple

The SplitcoastStamper’s Clean & Simple challenge was to make a ‘clean and simple’ card using the colors turquoise, yellow, and orange.
I like quotes. I suppose it is because I think other people are much more articulate than I am. "Muses work all day long and then at night get together and dance." ~Edgar Degas

The point of this quote? I made a card last night and then my muses must have been up all night because when I woke up this morning – I took the card apart and revised it. The basic design is the same I just decided the trio of panels needed to be ‘Cuddle-Bugged’ (dry embossed). ...
hmmmm.....wonder if a card revision still fits into the 'simple' category. Darn those night-time muses!

So …here is the card ‘recipe’.
~White base card
~Three panels of the challenge colors - dry embossed with Cuddlebug
~Image is from Stampin Up ‘The World Over’
~Image colored in with Crayola crayons then melted with iron (okay so I don’t iron clothes with it...)
~Final touches: ribbon, prima flowers, and flower brads
I just realized I RARELY make a card without design paper!

Get up close with the card by clicking on the image.

Monday, July 20, 2009

Star Challenge

This is an Our Creative Corner challenge to use stars on a project. The ‘challenger’ at OCC was Jennifer Meyer.
~Base card is SU! I collaged torn pages from an old book - light layer of fine glitter (because I got heavy handed with the glue).
~Layer of smudged (Distress Ink Faded Jeans) kraft paper. Then layer of Miss Elizabeth red white dot stripes
~Smaller rectangle is also Miss Elizabeth as is the top flag print
~Small ribbon and cut out star adhered with dimensional
~Star is smudged and embossed with navy
~Swirl brads in both outer corners - I had to add these because the dimensionals that attached the kraft paper layer wouldn't stick to the old book text and the glitter. Then I added stars on the inside to hide the brad prongs. Sometimes, I just REFUSE to give up on a card! You can get up close with the card by clicking on the image.

Sunday, July 19, 2009

My Friends Binny & Smith

No challenge today –just messin’ around spendin’ time in the bubble.
~Base card – Stampin’ Up!®Eggplant
~Design paper – MME Wild Asparagus
~Stamp – Stampin’ Up! Touch of Nature
Good News Bad News Alert:
The good news – I really like working with Copics The bad news – not EVERYTHING lends itself to the 5 colors I own
Good news – I really like Crayola® Crayons
More good news – I have LOTS of Crayons
So…. When life gives you lemons… you learn to improvise
~I colored in the image with good ol’ Binny & Smith Crayola® Crayons
Digression Alert: Yes, I know the B & S name was officially changed to Crayola in 2007 and yes I know the company is owned by Hallmark, however, I’m on a nostalgia jag so bear with me. I even cracked open a brand new box of 48! It’s the simple pleasures: slowly opening the hinged box… getting a whiff of the waxy Crayola® aroma… glimpsing all the colors, remembering without even looking – names of colors (burnt sienna, periwinkle, cornflower, maize...) But the biggest thrill? YES!!!! Every Crayon has that flawless point!!! Ahhhhh it’s the simple things in life……. This is fun. A timeline of Crayola history – including how the name came to be!
~After I colored in the image with crayons I use a hot iron to ‘melt’ the colors into blending
~When using a sheet of scrap paper to place between the crayoned image and the iron, the text from the scrap paper transferred onto the image area. Not to be one to toss and start over – I decided I LIKE the text included on the image. (more lemons & lemonades)
~The image was ‘oval-ed’ using Spellbinders® Nestabilities
~I spritzed the image oval with Memories Mists Blueberry Shake and Mango Lemonade. (SERIOUSLY it really is called Mango LEMONADE…hmmmm a recurring theme.)
~Another Nestie oval using SU!®Eggplant
~Design paper turned 90° and applied to more eggplant cardstock – flower brads added to 3 corners
~Ribbons added – and as long as I was in a ‘melty’ mood – I used my embossing gun to melt the sheer ribbons
~Inside text : My thoughts are with you. (Stampabilities®)

Sista G wants sympathy cards so this one is heading to the Omaha Basket. Get up close with the card by clicking on the image.

Saturday, July 18, 2009

Verve Vellum

Verve Anniversary Challenge Week 4 VLVJul04
Verve Sketch with a Twist Challenge – the twist is to use vellum.
~Design papers are BasicGray ‘Infuse’
~Scalloped circles made using Nestiblities
~I used the outer scrap from the smaller circle on the bottom right corner of the sentiment rectangle
~Three Martha Stewart punch doves – the one on the sentiment rectangle is vellum
~The text rectangle was plain off-white that I ‘grunged’ with Distress Ink: Old Paper, Peeled Paint, Vintage Photo, and Tattered Rose and layered on dark brown cardstock
~Sentiment by Rubber Stampede
You can get up close with the card by clicking on the image.

Get Your Party On!

Our Creative Corner had a challenge, last week, to create a project incorporating an animal. So I’m thinking Party Animal!
~All the papers are from a ‘paper scraps’ pack by Miss Elisabeth’s ($ Tree)
~The purple base layer needed a little ‘punch’ so I used a VersaMarker and blue ultra thick embossing powder
~I used Stampin Up Canine Capers stamped with Memento Tuxedo Black colored with watercolor pencils. (I just HAVE to get more Copic markers!!) I darkened all the noses and the dalmation’s spots with American Crafts Galaxy Marker
~The party hats were punched and then decorated using Stickles
~I laid a line of glue and one-by-one inserted each blade of grass which was a wad of rescued unknown green! Then a sprinkled green plastic square glitter-like ‘stuff’.
~Sentiment I put together using individual letters in a ‘printing kit’. (hmmm..I believe this is another Transfer of Crap situation.)
~The present brad with the sentiment I just purchased from a $ Tree in Omaha
~The ribbons are threaded through a yellow metal brad
You can get up close with the card by clicking on the image.

Friday, July 17, 2009

Transfer of Java

This is so exciting. I received my FIRST comment on my blog!!!! This is NOT counting the one from my sissy, that one really doesn’t count, some comment about me not following directions…..
So…my very first comment NOT from a relative! How fun is that???!!! Maybe COMMENTS are why people blog.

Res-Q Challenge. What a fun challenge this one was: “Your Trashy Tuesday challenge is to make a card...that has tires/wheels (i.e. car, bicycle, train, inner-tube, etc.). You also must reuse something that is already in your trash can as an element on your card. We'll incorporate the 3 R's (Reduce, Recycle, Reuse) in our card making and paper crafts.”

~Base card is Stampin Up
~Layer of K&Co. Wild Saffron
~Stamp: SU Loads of Love
~Truck was stamped with Memento Tuxedo Black, then outlined with VersaMarker Pen and embossed with clear Ranger embossing powder, and colored with Copics
~Bumpers and hub caps silver embossed and pierced with black brads; windows clear embossed; tires colored with watercolor pencils

Now for the recyling:
~Truck is stamped on ‘rescued’ recycled cardstock which originally served as a cover for a book of sample papers from a graphics arts department
~Edges were ‘roughed up’ and smudged with Distress Ink Vintage Photo

The truck image rectangle is mounted on handmade paper which I made last year.
When I made the paper last year – for whatever reason – I threw a coffee pot worth of used coffee grounds into the paper mulch. I have no idea why I did that (visions of Pollack, Degas…was I thinking I was making scented paper – only the muses know…) Anyway - the handmade paper is recycled from egg cartons, cardboard and coffee grounds. Did I mention I REALLY REALLY like Douwe Egbert coffee? Difficult to see – but trust me the grounds are there - too bad it doesn’t SMELL like a hot cup of java!
These layers are attached to a recycled deep teal color file folder. The folder was found in ‘the Sioux City basket’ AKA ‘Transfer of Crap’. Hmmmmmm... familial transfer of crap...topic for a future blog post....

The coffee bean pile in the back of the truck (SU! Espress Yourself) is stamped on the back of a Hallmark card “rescued” from the trash and colored with Copics and watercolor pencil. I attached the base of the beans to the truck with tape adhesive and lifted only the top of the beans with dimensional for 3-D effect.

One final recycling – vanilla inside is backside of an invitation. Inside is stamped with using SU! Espress Yourself. Coffee cup is colored with gel pens, watercolor pencils and froth is Liquid Appliqué. Inside sentiment: Friends are the coffee break in the business of life.

I recycled and reused. Not sure what I reduced...except time spent cleaning or cooking! You can get up close with the card by clicking on the image.

Thursday, July 16, 2009


Verve Week 3 Challenge
The challenge this week from Verve was to use the sketch (layout) supplied by Verve with the {twist} - include scoring.

I wanted the score lines to be ‘functional’ so I decided to go with a game board. I’m thinking maybe a hopscotch grid will be notated in my ‘card bucket list’. Sure, I know most people have grandiose bucket lists…. climb a mountain, parachute, run the Boston Marathon, go to the Louvre’… my bucket list is … well … less developed! A blog was on my bucket list so: 'check-check'!

Have any suggestions for my blog??? I'm open to ideas, suggestions, to do lists....

I used my score tool on the Fiskar paper cutter. The scoring is the grid on the tic-tac-toe board, the two horizontal rectangles of black/white pinstripe and around the border of the floral paper. The X & O are Paper Studio Alphabet.

Layers and layers of solid black and red cardstock and three DCWV Mat Stack design cardstock, several ribbon snippets. and of course smudging is the sum total of this one! You can get up close with the card by clicking on the image.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

And it just happens to be the Iowa state flower...

Another Stampin B's challenge response.
Challenge #11 - Watercolor. If their main goal is to create fun - their challenges certainly achieve that!

This stamp was another unused 'had-ta-buy-it' purchase. It is a large background stamp by Rubber Stampede - Wild Rose Background.

I colored in the flowers with watercolor pencils. I coated the inage with water-based varnish.The image was then split into threes and mounted on black then on a SU! cardstock.

I 'smudged' the edges of the base vanilla color card with Distress Ink Fired Brick. There is a polka dot layer of MME Wild Asparagus. The edges of the polka dot are 'smudged' with Fired Brick Red and a little black.

The center panel is attached with dimensionals. The side panels are adhered directly to the polka dot layer.

Upper left and lower right corners of stamped image have SU! Hodgepodge hardware.

You can get up close with the card by clicking on the image.

The Use-it Muse Speaks

I bought these tri-fold blank cards...HAD to have them...3-4 years ago. Finally, the 'use-it! Muse, put a marker to my head and said, "use it NOW....and no one get hurts!"

Left side - Stampin Up Chocolate Chip card stock layer topped with Cosmo cricket Gretel: Woodland.
Flower cut out: Stampin Up Touch of Nature flower stamped with Memento Tuxedo Black on Kraft paper - colored with watercolor pencils - center of flower given a dap of SU! crystal effects - flower cut out. I don't stamp as much as I would like - VERY intimidated about coloring!!! Flower attached with a dimensional.
Small flap closure - manilla base - layer of SU! Chocolate Chip and strip of Cosmo Cricket Gretel: Woodland and teal colored large brad.
You can get up close with the card by clicking on the image.


A Stampin B's Design Team challenge to incorporate a monogram. Well, this isn't exactly a monogram... it is the letter G - the inside is stamped with 'thanks'!

Finally - a reason to use two of those - "oh I love that I MUST have it" that, 3 years later sat unloved and unopened!

Here is the quick and low:
Base card - vanilla - edges smudged of course! My Mind's Eye Bohemia bottom layer.
Navy layer of Bazzill
Top of ready made card 'personal impressions' by Inkadinkado. There was a blank circular area in the center of the card. There I stamped using Inkadinkado 'personal impressions' using VersaMark watermark pad and Stampendous cobalt blue embossing powder. Yummy EP - I need to use it more!
Center rose/pink color chipboard medallion is Miss Elizabeth from $ Tree.
Monogram "G" is homemade from clay
Assorted ribbons

I Can See Clearly Now...

This will be my last blog for this evening. It is nearly a self-portrait. It is an homage to “opening my eyes” to the world of blog.

Pretty straight forward with this one. I was working on a SplitcoastStampers layout challenge. However, I didn’t follow the directions yet again. The design layout called for a square card with three circles across and three down. As you can see when I saw circles I saw google eyes. So my 3 x 3 3ended up 2 x 5. SO goes the creative process….
~Base card Stampin Up - the have the BEST cardstock
~Design paper is Paper Studio Trick or Treat Stripes from Archiver’s
~Circles punched with Marvy punch
~Googlie eyes….from some unfinished kid craft project

You can get up close with the card by clicking on the image.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Mixing Fibers

Sketch Challenge at Oodabug AlleyAdd Image
A sketch challenge is a layout challenge. Card makers are given a baseline black/white layout to work from. The card muse swoops in - and the process begins!

~Base is Stampin Up - edges smudeged with Tim Holtz Old Paper and Vintage Photo
~Top design paper (dp) - Cosmo Cricket
~Bottom DP is BasicGrey
~Red Pinstripe sticker by Stampin Up
~The vertical strip is fabric button 'breezy border" (Alexander Henry Fabrics Collection) glued to cardstock and allowed to dry. BONUS day - mixing my fibers!!!~Twine threaded though two small punches and tied in bow
~Buttons treaded with black DMC floss then attached with 3-D Zots
Thank you for the fun challenge Charmaine!
You can get up close with the card by clicking on the image.

Corrugated Embossing

Another double hitter for the challenge games! It fit in with StampinB’s challenge to “use metal on a card” and SplitcoastStampers WT225 Out of the Box “use corrugated cardboard” challenge.

~Ground card is white – smudged with Tim Holtz Distress Inks – Fired Brick, Old Paper, Vintage Photo, and Peeled Paint
~Design paper is Bo Bunny smudged with Tim Holtz Distress Ink – Fired Brick
~Thin strip is StampinUp! sticker
~Rectangle image is red cardstock, then layer of black cardstock, then 'rescued from the recyle bin' corrugated cardboard that I embossed with Cuttlebug Stylized Flower embossing folder. After embossing, I smudged the top with Tim Holtz Distress Inks. I was really please with the result of the corrugated cardboard after it passed through the Cuttlebug, It was squishy and the negative/positives are very obvious.
~The two large pewter brads meet the ‘use metal’ challenge from the StampinB’s Design Team.

You can get up close with the card by clicking on the image.

Chasing Challenges

Day 2 of Blogging. OMGoodness – does this get any easier? Is there a blog beat, a posting pace, a writing rhythm that you get into? Yikes! Take photo, download photo, crop photo, upload photo… write copy, find links, insert links, proof copy, edit copy, upload copy… My bloggy brain is cloggy, floggy, and soggy. (Oh and I forgot - read the challenge, hope for the challenge muse to poke me, and create the card...) The whole card thingy is actually the EASY part of this whole process.

However, I refuse to be technology challenged so onward and upward…

This SplitcoastStampers challenge was to check peruse an online catalog, Chasing Fireflies, and find something to inspire…. When uploading your challenge card you were to indicate the item for your inspiration. I was inspired by a pink glitter fairy!
~The base card is Stampin Up! Cardstock (my FAVORITE cardstock)
~The design paper is from a Mat Stack “Once Upon a Time” by DCWV
~Squares were scalloped using 'Nesties' and Cuttlebug~Stickles dots added to outer edges
~Crown is coordinating “Once Upon a Time” DCWV chipboard
~The sentiment is from the Michael’s Dollar Bin “Joy” by Kolette Hall for Studio G. It is stamped with Ranger Snow Cap pigment and very lightly embossed with Tsukineko EP Turquoise.
~Pink, navy, and purple tulle added along the side with metallic floss are the finishing touches
You can get up close with the card by clicking on the image.

Monday, July 13, 2009

Not Exactly Corrugated Metal

This is a double hitter for the challenge games! It fits in with StampinB’s challenge to “use metal on a card” and Splitcoast Stampers challenge WT225 Out of the Box “use corrugated cardboard” challenge.

~The design paper is from the $Tree – Miss Elizabeth – I smudged it up with Tim Holtz Distress Ink Faded Jeans. I have a 'thing' for smudging - flat surfaces of design paper and almost ALL edges. I like the vintage feel it adds. I think it also makes layers look less flat. I also like the chic, flared edges obtained when 'roughin' up edges obtain by holding the cardstock vertically and scraping the edge with the side of my metal ruler.
~The blue/star paper is from the same package (whooooo hooooo- 6 sheets of dp for a buck - Dollar Tree Therapy - ya gotta love it!). I zip-zag stitched around the blue/star dp with black thread (yes I was tooooo lazy to change thread) and tied a piece of twine through hole punches and then around the rectangle end.
~The “flag” is corrugated box – with the top layer of paper peeled off and lightly smudged with Fired Brick, Blue Jean and White inks
~The star is a rusted metal star rescued from a candle jar – the hole was already punched in one of the star points so I tied a piece of jute through it.
~Double Dog Dare Time. Admit it! You too have an embellishment or piece of design paper that you purchased because you LOVE it. You tuck it away and occasionally fondly look at it. You may even get it out and with firm determination tell yourself - I'm going to use this today! You pick up the instrument of incision, or possible destruction, (your scissors, your paper cutter) and as you feel your circulation pool in your nether regions you STOP. You can't make yourself use it - because then "you won't have it anymore". I know quilters experience this pang of OMGoodness - can I really cut into this??? Well, anyway, that is how I felt about the rusty star. I really, really like it!!! Makes me want to run out and buy sheet metal, tin snips, and get it to rustin'!

You can get up close with the card by clicking on the image.

Boo to the 4th Power!

SCS Challenge LSC228
This challenge from SplitcoastStampers was to crop (just use one section) of an image and use it at least three times. The image I stamped is Booblie Eyes from StampinUp! I cropped the heads from the bodies of the ‘spooks’ and placed them ‘behind’ the fence.
~The full image is stamped, colored in with watercolor pencils, scallop cut, and layered on ‘Nestie’ scallop of orange card stock
~The ivy on the fence (stamp from the $Tree) is colored in with watercolor pencils
~All the eyes are dotted in with Black Diamond Stickles (I didn’t follow all the directions which instruct use of brads or eyelets only. I also dotted a wee spot of SU! Crystal Effects to each tooth. Sorry – I guess that makes me Challenge Challenged!) I was tempted to toss some ribbon on it – but heard a voice in my head saying “Step Away from the Ribbon!”
What a spooktacular challenge!
You can get up close with the card by clicking on the image.

Verve a Poppin'

This is my Poppin’ Pastel response for the Anni-VERVE-sary Week 2. Now THIS one really WAS a challenge. I bombed on the Burnt Batik method – but did find I liked the BACK side of the batik – so will revisit that technique at a later date. I employed the poppin pastel technique instead.

~Base card is vanilla – with edges smudged. (I don’t think I can use or attaché ANYTHING without smudge the edges first – what’s up with THAT????) DP layer is BasicGrey Blush.

~Turquoise cardstock is adhered to dark brown cardstock. I embossed the turquoise with Ranger Clear and then Ranger Enamelware.

~The print ribbon was in a dollar bin at Michael’s – this was then threaded through a button.

~The circular layers consist of a circle of SU! Chocolate Chip, a dark brown (again – smudged edges) scallop punched, a white circle using the Poppin’ Pastel technique with SU! Big Pieces. I dotted the scallop centers with Crystal Effects. The center is a brad from Oriental Trading. The tiny flowers were punched from a $ Bin find at Michael’s.

I have to admit this was more challenge than fun – but it is what it is. Now I’m off the think about Viva La Verve Week3.

You can get up close with the card by clicking on the image.


This is my grudge-y twist for Anni-VERVE-sary. (Verve) I LOVE grunge so this was too fun to pass up!

~Base card is Bazzill Basics card stock– with edges roughed up and smudged with Distress Ink Old Paper and StampinUp! (SU!) Really Rust. I rough up cardstock edges using the side of my favorite metal ruler.

~Bottom tilt layer is 'rescued' coverstock from the cover of a paper sample book. The design paper(DP) is My Mind’s EyeBohemian edges smudged with SU! Really Rust. On top of this DP I stamped SU! Canvas background stamp. I didn’t it press completely flat as I didn’t want the entire area stamped. I also stamped diagonally across the top right of the Bohemian DP with Distress Ink Old Paper. The bottom layer flourish is part of the original design paper.

~Next is a torn layer of black cardstock followed by a layer of self-adhesive fabric by Love, Elsie called Jack+Abby Apron Dot. Sissy G picked this cool one out AND bought it for me! How cool is that? I grudged-up this layer by cutting away the adhesive layer from the upper left corner so the fabric would curl. I also pulled some of the threads loose for a slightly raveled look. Then I used some coffee concentrate to make coffee cup stains on the fabric. Did I mention I LOVE coffee? I'm addicted to Douwe Egberts brand coffee....yummmmmm!

~The sentiment is by Inkadinkado. I stamped it with Stazon Saddle Brown onto the same DP used on the bottom tilt layer: Bohemian. I used an area that did not have the flourish. I smudged the edges and the top with Distress Ink Old Paper.

~Ribbon area includes sheer ribbon, twine, and jute tied to a printed ribbon. The printed ribbon was bright yellow background so I grudged-it-up with the coffee concentrate and then smudged with Baby Blue Stampabilities.

Get up close with the card by clicking on the image.

Put it in Neutral!

This is not only my first blog post it is my first upload to my blog of a card I made for a challenge. Yes, card makers throw down paper gauntlets and challenge one another to card making DUELS! Parameters are set like color, technique, embellishments, or layout and that is what you work with! Challenges are fun and, well, challenges! Challenges make you think, they inspire, they encourage dusting off unused items. (I know – why did I buy the items if they are sitting unused!? When I have the answer to that one – I’ll post it on my Blog!)

I’m not even all that great at card making not when compared to card designers I follow; but I love the process and the nearly instant gratification. (Card – a few hours; quilt – DAYS and DAYS!!!) Plus I have my own bubble of space for my card making. If I get the urge to quilt I have to work in a shared space with hubby. (Nice guy – but a PACK Rat – and I don’t do cluttered clutter well!)

Anyway, on to this uploaded card. This challenge originated at one of my favorite Blog sites - Stampin' B's Design Team. The challenge is to Use NEUTRALS ONLY on a card or project!
Here are the details on my attempt to meet the challenge.

The base card vanilla with smudged edges
~DP (Design Paper) layer is We R Memory Keepers Boho Chic Hobo Hip purchased at Archiver’s
~Twill plus three brown brads
~The next layer is design paper polka dots (My Mind’s Eye Wild Asparagus) topped with a layer of black then off-white card stock
~The top layer of a brownish cardstock – was stamped with Stampin’ Up (SU!) Canvas background using Distress Ink Vintage Photo, then the image is SU! Touch of Nature using black Stampabilities
~The drops and coffee cup ring are actual coffee concentrate (Let’s hear it for the versatility of java!)
~Three black medium size brads complete the card
You can get up close with the card by clicking on the image.