Sunday, December 4, 2016

Tree Skirt Selfies

It is officially Christmas tree season! Bringing out the tree skirt that my sister, Judy, hand made with layers upon layers of applique always makes me feel a little melancholy. Each of the Twelve Days of Christmas have their own wedge of this skirt that looks practically new even though she make it (with love) in 1984. I love this tree skirt! I even pinned it together and wore it for a selfie! Okay Okay - so there was a SUBSTANTIAL gap in the back... Selfies are taken from the FRONT! I will spare all of you and won't post my tree skirt wearing, shades of Bernice Clifton on Designing Women.

I sent a picture of it on a group (family) text. Her grandkids (my great nieces) were bemoaning that they didn't have one, while one of the married one's bragged (or exclaimed) she "wasn't even born then". Was that a slam at my age? Hmmmm......

Handmade Christmas Tree - circa 1984.
Here is Stella posing in Judy's daughter's tree skirt down in Atlanta, GA.
I really need to ask her how many of these she made! On to the card....
Shiny Tree
~Layer of green American Crafts Foil card stock
~Die cuts - tree and star - Sizzix Jim Holtz - using same green Foil card stock
~Strip of gold glitter Washi
Challenges | Inspiration
Just Us Girls - word week - Christmas tree
Glittern N' Sparkle - Christmas colors
Fusion - Christmas

Here's to family, Christmas memories, and evidently VERY young nieces!

Thanks for clicking by,
Nancy in Iowa

Monday, November 28, 2016

Klutzy Bling

Daughter Amy's bestie always has a Christmas card request. I have created cards "where no {cardmaker}  has gone before" with a Star Trek themed Christmas card and uber laden bling cards....not my best work but I have to admit they were fun to do!

No theme requested this year so since BLING is her signature 'color' that is the direction I went with Ginny's cards.

So...the center of this was from my last post. I am SUCH a KLUTZ with all white cards. I don't know what I did I don't know how I did it but I got a HUGE smudge of black ink on the front of it! So I had to mulligan it and used it to create this. Geeeezzzz! #KlutzMuch?

Purple + Glitter = Ginny Favs
~Paper Studio Chunky Glitter
~Purple glitter tag outlining a silver Merry Christmas tag
~Silver embroidery floss
Inspiration | Challenges
Just Us Girls - photo week challenge (silver & purple)
Brown Sugar - anything

I hope Ginny likes these. I don't think I can bling it up much more than this. Maybe I should have gone with a Christmas Harry Potter theme...or Christmas Anne of Green Gables...or Christmas tennis theme.... So there is a tiny glimpse of Ginny!

Here's to bling on bling, annual requests for cards, and my daughter's eclectic besties!

Thanks for clicking by.

Nancy in Iowa

Wednesday, November 23, 2016

Joyfully Short

Quick post for a quick card. This is not nearly as wonderful as the card I saw that inspired me to hunt for my Tim Holtz Thinlits scribbly circles.

Joyfully Quick
~Die Cuts for sentiment and circles
~American Craft Foil cardstock
Challenges | Inspirations
Fusion - layout & photo
Just Us Girls - color week (purple, teal, gold)
Little Red Wagon - sparkle and shine
Southern Girls - anything

Here's to family time for the holidays, loose fitting comfy clothes, and over-eating!

Thanks for clicking by and Happy Thanksgiving!

Nancy in Iowa

Sunday, November 6, 2016

Tiled Cards

Card time! And tile time! I saw some tiles painted using alcohol inks. I decided to go home, pull up a tutorial or two and give it a go. The first stumbling block was not having any alcohol inks to play with. So...I searched for DIY alcohol inks. Seriously...there is a DIY for anything and everything! NOT that I would recommend using any old DIY project... Be sure you look at the reviews! Some of them are hilarious! There was one about how to make your own wipes with paper towels and some kind of liquid. When they mentioned them molding...I laughed, moved on, and decided I would continue to buy baby wipes at the store for my stamp cleaning.

Several tutorials later...a trip to the store for rubbing alcohol, Sharpies, and plastic cups and I was almost in business. A trip to Habitat for Humanity's ReStore for assorted tiles and I was ready!

Colors are not as deep as they are in real life. It was fun to do this!

These will be separated and made into little magnets. #StockingStuffers


Envelope of Thoughts
~White base card
~Three layers of DCWV design paper
~Stamp and die - Noteworthy by Richard Garay
~Butterfly stamp
~Paper clip
Inspirations | Challenges
Fusion - sketch
Just Us Girls - word week

Here's to trying new things, drinking wine while working with the kind of alcohol you CAN'T drink, finding tutorials that you can actually stomach watching and supporting my local ReStore!

Thanks for clicking by!

Nancy in Iowa

Sunday, October 16, 2016

Falling for Fall

It was my favorite time of year! Autumn! To be perfectly honest EVERY change of season is my favorite! I love the change that magically happens every season. I love the change of the leaves. I love the first snowfall. I love the first peeks of spring blossoms.
We may not have the spectacular colors of the upper Northeast but we do have some pretty vibrant  colors here in the Midwest.
Cardinal bush (at a McDonald's). I don't think the car behind me appreciated me taking a photo and delaying his Big Mac!
 Some green. Some red. Some gold.
Red blushes.
This one has only half embraced autumn!
I love the seeing the mix of summer touched by oncoming fall.
Bold golds!
Just a hint of autumn.
So with fall in the air - a fall color card is in order!
Thankful for the Clearance Aisle
~Base card PaperTrey Ink
~Layer of DCWV Indian Summer design paper
~Olive and rust cardstock die cuts using Nestabilities Labels 2
~The rest of the die cuts are Sizzix ThinLits by Jen Long (bought this on my trip to Atlanta, Ga - clearance aisle of Hobby Lobby!! I hit the jackpot there!)
Inspiration | Challenges
Just Us Girls - color week - gold, olive, rust
Southern Girls - punches and dies

Here's to crisp autumnal temperatures, seasonal changes, finding deeply discounted die cuts, and the memories of sister time when I use items purchased during our holiday time together!

Nancy in Iowa

Monday, October 10, 2016

A Touch of Flavor

Again, the weekend dissolves quicker than a popsicle on a blistering hot summer day. Why is that!? Yesterday included a trip to Omaha for hair cut. And I mean hair CUT! I got my hair cut short enough FOR a blistering hot summer day. I haven't had SHORT hair in years! This is going to take some getting used to... Also had dinner with Omaha sista which included Bloody Marys AND sweet potato fries - YUM!!!!

Today we went to Junkstock. We attempted yesterday - but the line of cars to get in was backed up for MILES. I voted NO! They estimate there were 10,000 in attendance yesterday! YIKES! So we went today. Still plenty of junk to be had! I love to see not only the creative re-purposing but the vintage items, and the displays. It is a day of creative overload always topped off with kettlecorn!

 Actual doors at the entrance! So many details!

Who doesn't love pom-pom garland!?

Cute display or what!!!???

Now...on to the card. I may have done a little 'fudging'.... I can't believe in my vast collection of stamps I don't have a pineapple! I have vegies galore! I have strawberries, grapes, apples...but alas no pineapple. So I used "pineapple flavoring" when I created this cupcake! No - REALLY!!! Okay so disqualify me. I had fun coming up with a 'work-around'! And isn't that what card challenges should be: fun and CHALLENGIING!?


Pineapple Concentrate Flavoring
~White base card
~My Mind's Eye Penny Lane design cardstock layer
~Washi tape
~TPC Cupcake stamp, stamped on stripe cardstock, cupcake top stamped on yellow glitter cardstock
~Scallop circle with yellow punched dots
Inspiration | Challenges
Just Us Girls - trend week - pineapple
Fusion - sketch

Here's to making do, seizing the cupcake and the challenge, and moving forward!

Nancy in Iowa

Monday, October 3, 2016

Patio Life

Wow! It has been so long since I blogged I wasn't sure I would remember how to do it! Card - check!
Something to blog about...SO many topics to get caught up on!

I need to get my thoughts organized and get back on the blog track. That will also means getting back to making cards! Where did the summer go? Not into making cards that is for sure - but on a positive note my patio looks great! That is where most of my after-work hour were spent. Not here in my 'fiber bubble' but outside in the 'patio bubble'! I kept hubby very busy in HIS 'work-shop bubble'!

So...I had this wine rack. I made several attempts to give it away. After no takers. I was just about to send it to the thrift store when I had a "scathingly brilliant" idea. A little PVC pipe, some paint, a few succulents and a little help from hubby dearest... He cut the lengths of PVC and sliced the oval openings. He made the legs/stand for the final product. And BOOM! An instant color popping planter all from a repurposed wine rack.

Rejected wine rack. PVC cut with oval slits.
Painted and planted and attached to stand.
 Patio corner!

I'll post more patio pics in a later blog (yes I plan to get back to blogging and carding). On to the card.

Thanks a Bunch (of leaves)
~Base card PaperTrey Ink
~Layer of off white confetti card stock sprayed with Distress Spray Stains - Mermaid Lagoon; Abandoned Coral; Cracked Pistachio
~Taylored Expressions Leafy Branches using DCWV Indian Summer cardstock
~Thanks die cut
Inspiration | Challenges
Just Us Girls -  Word Week 'Leaves'
Retro Sketches - sketch #209
Craft Your Passion - anything
Dies R Us - leaves/trees

Thanks for clicking by.

Here's to Haley Mills, "The Trouble with Angels", patio life, and getting back to my 'bubble'!

Nancy in Iowa

Sunday, May 1, 2016

More is More When it Comes to Pearls

Rain - all weekend. So explain to me why I didn't get a dozen or two cards made? I tinker too much! Or to quote my Daddy: I PUTZ around too much. A perfectly good rainy weekend and what do I have to show for it? Reorganized craft area, a pot of spaghetti and meat sauce for the hubby to have for lunches this week, a dusted living room, laundry washed, dried, folded and put away, several hours of computer work - for my job, four beds worth of linens washed and reapplied, but only ONE CARD! I think I need a Weekend Time Management Course. Or better yet a Weekend Priority Management Course.

Then to top it off I went a little pearl crazy. I guess since I didn't make more than one card I felt the need to over use pearls? I can't explain it. It looks more like a pin cushion than a card!

~Base card PaperTrey Ink - Aqua Mist
~Die cut shape using SU Floral Frames
~Die cut pink PaperTrey Ink - Sweet Blush topped with another die cut using Colorbok Homespun
~Teal and white pearls
~Aqua Mist layer stamped with Stampabilities Le London Script using Versamark and Ranger Perfect Pearls (AGAIN WITH THE PEARLS!)
Challenges | Inspirations
Just Us Girls - shaped card for Mother's Day or girlfriend (for a co-worker who's birthday is on Mother's Day- she likes owls and butterflies...go figure...I sure hope she likes pearls...)
Glitter N' Sparkle - shaped card
My Sheri Crafts - shaped card
Crafting with Friends - anything
Just Add Ink - color photo inspiration

Thanks for clicking by!

Here's to prioritizing, better use of weekend time, and plans for going cold turkey on pearls!

Nancy in Iowa

Sunday, April 10, 2016

Smooshed Junk

Where does the weekend go? I can't believe I have to go back to work already! I need a course in time management. I need to manage to find more time to spend in my Bubble making cards and pretending I am creative and productive.

I shouldn't complain. I did take Friday off to go with a friend to JunkStock in Omaha, NE. It was great fun. So much fun in fact that I went back on Saturday with husband dearest. Junk, crafts, kettle corn, antiques, more junk, festival food, lots of walking, kettle corn, live music, interesting people, more junk (did I mention kettle corn?) was a great two days! Even though I don't 'do crafts' (just cards) I came away inspired.

Once I take a photo of my lovely purchases I will post them! First I have to do a little work on a couple of them...note to self - take before and after photos! I bought a print that needs a frame and I bought a little something/something for my sissies! Bet they will be THRILLED to find out I bought THEM some "junk" too!

Smooshed Daisies
~Base card - white card stock
~Frame of teal card stock
~Smooshed background using acrylic paints
~Watercolor Daisy stamp by Hampton Art
~Perfect Pearls Blue Raspberry flower centers
Inspiration | Challenges
Just Us Girls - trend week - smoosh technique
Southern Girls - anything goes
Fusion - color inspiration
Come and Get It - bright colors
Creative Corner - flowers

Thanks for clicking by!

Here's to getting tired and inspired all at the same time, hoping for better time management skills, and discovering 'treasures' amid 'the junk'!

Nancy in Iowa

Sunday, March 27, 2016

Go North

If you are new to my blog - you won't be aware - that a request or a need to make a wedding card makes me weak in the knees. And I don't mean weak as in swooning with lovey-dovey feelings! I mean sweaty palms, increased heart rate, oh-no-anything-but-a-wedding-card attack!

I will do anything to make my way around to a non-traditional non-mushy wedding card. In light of this I purchased the Tim Holtz Compass Blueprint stamp and die set. The minute I saw it I decided it would be my wedding go-to set! The reason I stumbled upon it was I was at Hobby Lobby INTENT on using my 40% off coupon! more sweaty palms...I now have my very own standard go-to non-traditional stamp set for weddings! And I got it on sale! Winner. Winner. Chicken Dinner! As the inside sentiment I use "you found your true north".

True North
~Base card
~Layer of Prima Engraved collection
~Tim Holtz Compass Blueprint
~Stampabilities Turquoise ink
~Stampin' Up Early Espresso
~Teal bling
~Stampin' Up Curly Cute sentiment using Versafine Onyx Black
Inspirations | Challenges
Just Us Girls - photo inspiration
Crafting with Friends - anything goes

Thanks for clicking by!

Here's to having a go-to stamp, not allowing wedding cards make me sweat, and  stumbling upon my NEXT must-have-go-to stamp!

Nancy in Iowa

Saturday, March 26, 2016

Birds of a Feather

I ordered the Tim Holtz Bird Crazy set along with the dies. When they arrived I wondered what the heck I was going to do with them!

Then a colleague of mine was named to the 100 Great Iowa Nurses! Well Freddie is a one of a kind 'bird'! He marches to his own drummer. He never disappoints on holidays - dressing with flair to match the occasion! He is a wonderful nurse and I am proud to call him friend!

The bird stamps caaaww-caaaww'd at me to use them! This little guy is a perfect homage to Freddie! I've seen him in a clown costume, over-the-top Mardi Gras fashions, he has sported amethyst broaches, and the full set of Pac-Man lapel pins (all at the same time). So I colored this guy with Brushos in an appropriately flamboyant Freddie style and gave him a splatter paint wing!

So now I am thinking I'm going to find other bird related reasons to use the rest of the set of stamps...cuz this guy was fun to make!

One in a Million
~PaperTrey Ink Orange Zest card stock
~Glitter on a Roll from Michael's
~Google eyes
~Tim Holtz Crazy Birds and Framelits
~Pop-ups for bird and wing
~Layer of Cryogen White card stock
Challenges | Inspirations
Fusion - sketch
Jade's Sparkling Butterflies - anything plus dies
CRAFT Challenge - add some bling
Cute Card Thursday - die
Stampotique - all about the birds

Thanks for clicking by!

Here's to all my fellow nurses, birds of different feathers, and un-regretting my most recent stamp purchase!

Nancy in Iowa

Saturday, March 19, 2016

The Bean Envelope

Last weekend I raked. This weekend...nearly had to shovel. It snowed off and on all day today. That is how we roll here in the Midwest!

Furnace on....Windows open....Close the windows...Turn on the furnace!

I'm so anxious to start buying bedding plants! Luckily the shops don't have any yet or I would have filled a cart with them! I guess the local green houses know best... The rule of Green Thumb around here is DON'T PLANT UNTIL MOTHER'S DAY WEEKEND!

My Midwest sister and I both sent snowy photos from today to our Atlanta, GA sister. We shared a text stroll down memory lane of wearing wooly warm winter coats over our frilly, short-sleeved, Easter dresses to Easter Mass. And being too cold (and mad) in church to even be able to shed the coats to show off the fru-fru dresses!

Enough about the weather...on to the card. Went with a 'coin card'. I have GOT to use up some of my 500 hundred coin envelopes!

Java Talk
~Base card - yellow cardstock
~Stenciled background (Tim Holtz stencils)
~Stamped cup colored with Copics, highlighted with Smooch, topped with Liquid Applique, circle punched
~Sentiment by Taylored Expressions - punched with SU Window punch
~Coffee bean
Challenges | Inspirations
Just Us Girls - color week - pink, purple, yellow
PolkaDoodles - spring colors
Southern Girls - nature (real coffee bean)

Thanks for clicking by!

Here's to spring, nope...snow....yup spring...nope...snow.... and a card that smells of coffee!

Nancy in Iowa

Thursday, March 10, 2016

Aching from Raking

Spring is not only in the air - it is in the ground! My arms may be aching from raking...but it was worth it to find this wee, solitary gem!

Yes...there actually are spots where you have to rake around snow piles - but hey! That's what living in the Midwest is all about. You never know what treasures you may find!

9 Patch Flowers

~Base card PaperTrey Ink
~Layer of Prima design paper Printery
~Strip of dry wall mesh
~Three strands of twine
~Paper flowers with rhinestones
Challenges | Inspirations
Just Us Girls - word week - flowers
Fusion - layout

Here's to the hidden treasures of spring, a glass of wine for my achy-rakey arms, and using up more of my bulk roll of dry wall mesh!

Thanks for clicking by!

Nancy in Iowa

Sunday, February 21, 2016

Blue Jelly

Merry Christmas to me! I received a Gelli plate for Christmas and ...nearly two months later...I finally cracked it open! And gave it a go!

I ended up with several backgrounds to put in my stockpile. I don't have the Gelli mastered but it sure was fun!

Teal Jelly
~White cardstock base
~Layer of navy card stock
~Layer of Cryogen White background created with Gelli Plate, teal, aqua, navy acrylic paint, navy blue embossing powder, clock stamp by 7 Gypsyies, flower stamps, honey comb stencil
~Paper Studio brad with plexi cover
~White chalk dots
~Notebook punch by Stampin' Up
~Washi tape
Challenges | Inspirations
Just Us Girls - color week - aqua, teal, navy
Shopping Our Stash - fantastic plastic
Sketch Saturday - sketch
Thanks for clicking by.
Here's to playing with new tools, creating a stockpile of backgrounds for future cards, and dreading Monday...
Nancy in Iowa

Sunday, February 14, 2016

Climate Confessions

I live in a place where this happens FREQUENTLY:

This is a normal, wintery, occurrence here in the Midwest:

We all get jazzed about the SUNNY part though! And do we REALLY need to know that it "feels like 19 degrees BELOW zero"? Isn't -2 sufficient enough to get most of us to bundle up? Who knows what -19 feels like? Does it really feel any different than 10 below?

There comes a point where COLD is COLD! I don't need some inanimate object to suggest, through psychological mind games to get me to don my Cuddle Duds, grab some mittens, and cover my ears!

I would rather not know there are 'cattle warnings'. I live in the Midwest - it is February - you do the math (on the number of layers required to survive)! FYI: The Weather Channel calls it a "wind chill advisory". The radio locals advise this agri-economy of "cattle warnings". Just another reason I love living in the Midwest: "Farm Reports" on the radio!

Just as I was experiencing Wind-Chill-Advisory (AKA Cattle Warning) fatigue I walked into Lowe's and encountered this:

Summer at Lowe's! Good time to get the best selection...

Not that I can even GET to my patio right now!

That's enough on the climate let's talk card and confession.

Detail of the back of the holder and the tag.

 The confession part is I started with a cheater card!

I purchased these at Marshall's. A package of 10 for $3.99.
I just HAD to have them.
I am a sucker for Kraft paper! I blame it on the frigid weather!

Krafty Confessions
~Base card - from Marshalls
~Repurposed with design Kraft cardstock by The Paper Studio
~Green sheer ribbon
~Washi tape
Challenges | Inspirations
Just Us Girls - trend week - tags
Lil' Patch of Crafty Friends - anything goes
Crafting with Friends - anything goes

Thanks for clicking by.

Here's to Cuddle Duds, cold climate, and confessions!

Nancy in Iowa

Monday, February 8, 2016

Holiday MashUp

 I TOLD you I had an over abundance of Coin Envelopes! I decided to make Valentine cards to fit these babies! 
In my defense this was probably the only quantity I could find on Amazon. 
But THEN when I started digging around my Valentine storage box. NOT to be confused with a Valentine box for holding all the kiddie Valentines we all use to spend hours decorating! Do kids still make Valentine boxes?

And I found this stack of 3 x 5 heart printed envelopes! There are two dozen of them. But as I admitted in my previous post - my list of "home made card worthy friends" isn't long enough to even need a list!
So...I put the Coin Envelope mission on HOLD! I will use these little cuties instead! Luckily I can still use the juicy stack of strips that are left-over from making square cards. So many missions! So little time!
In the spirit of a holiday mash-up I FINALLY broke out one of my Christmas gifts to use on one of the Valentine cards. I put to use the Tim Holtz Alphabetical die. I think I will be using this quite a bit! Fun font and oh how I enjoy my Cuttlebug!
Buckle Up
~Base card Bazzill pink cardstock
~Target tag with twine
~Valentine ribbon
~Chipboard buckle
~Red glitter chipboard heart
Inspiration | Challenges
Sketch Saturday - layout
One Stitch at a Time - love is in the air
The Ribbon Girl - anything plus ribbon
~PaperTry Ink white cardstock
~Layer of The Paper Studio Basics design paper
~Red stripe tag with twine
~Chipboard buckle with heart print ribbon
~Glitter chipboard heart
 Inspiration | Challenges
Mojo Monday - sketch
Crafting When We Can - add hearts

Exes and Ohhhs
~Base card PaperTrey Ink Pure Poppy
~Letters die cut using Sizzix Tim Holtz Alphabetical
~Tic-Tac-Toe made using white cardstock, creased, smudged, and stamped with Paper Studio Alphabet, layered on cardstock matts
~Washi tape
Inspiration | Challenges
Crafting with Dragonflies - anything goes
Digi Designs - use lots of red
Thanks for clicking by!
Here's to staying focused, digging through storage boxes, and finally playing with Christmas presents!

Nancy in Iowa