Monday, February 24, 2014

Birthday Card

I have another card to share today.  I made this one for my daughter-in-law, Lisa, for her birthday.  I gave it to her last night when we were all together for supper.  Libby (her daughter) was quite excited when she saw the envelope and couldn't wait for her Mom to open it.  Not sure if it was because she knew Grandma had made it or if it was because she just loves celebrations.  She is most excited that her birthday is next.  :)

I used my Silhouette and a card design that I found in the online store, my go-to source for cute ideas.  Lisa had requested some cash for a pan that she wanted to purchase so I thought a kitchen theme was appropriate. 

My husband was in kind of a rush to leave for a sporting event when I was trying to finish up and get the card photographed and into the envelope.  Consequently, I forgot to remove the little piece of cardboard that I had tucked inside the apron pocket so that I could stamp 'happy birthday' on the front.  Lisa was nice enough to take a second photo (minus the cardboard) and send it to me.  But you can see the cardboard in the detail shot I took at home.  Kind of like going to church with a roller stuck in the back of your hair...

I used a second design for the bowl inside the card and made it so I could tuck the cash in the bowl.  The oven mitts came with the apron card design - so cute.  Some clever wording on the right side completes the ensemble.  :)

As always, thanks for stopping!

Monday, February 17, 2014

Labor of Love

Hope you had a great Valentine's Day and a wonderful weekend.  We are experiencing blizzard conditions this morning and as I look out my studio windows, I feel like I am trapped in a snow globe.  Snow is coming down fast and furious and swirling all around.  The power was off early this morning, but a timely call to the power company got us back on line.  Enough about the weather...time to share what crafty goodness I have been up to.

I make most of the greeting cards I give and I try to make an extra effort at Valentine's Day.  The grandkids have grown to expect my handmade cards and so has my husband.  In fact, he always looks expectantly to see if it is an original, so I hate to disappoint.  When I saw Shelly Hickox' Valentine Pop-Up Card I knew I had to make one.  I can't claim much originality on the first one because I followed her sample pretty closely.  I had many of the Tim Holtz Dies she used and a couple she didn't.  I saw this cute little phrase in the Silhouette store and knew it had to go on my Valentine to my husband.  We have been married over 40 years so sometimes we need a little reminder to keep the romance in our marriage.  :)

I used brown and blue cardstock to keep it from getting too girly.  I made a rubber stamp with the phrase and stamped it on some cardstock I cut with my Silhouette, using brown Ranger ink and clear embossing powder.  Instead of fussing with glitter and making a lot of mess, I made all of the cut-outs from glitter cardstock.  Love this stuff!  The embossed hearts are made with a Sizzix die, 'Lacy Heart', that embosses and cuts at the same time.  I used glitter card stock for those, too, and they turned out great. 

After the initial attempt at making one of these 'box' cards, I was hooked and went a little crazy.  I made seven Valentine's in all!  Fortunately, I had some die cuts that I had purchased and some die cuts that I had made and saved for 'some day'.  I have lots of great cardstock stacks on hand so I went through and chose two prints and a solid for each card.  The cardstock I chose for each one helped me define a theme for each card.  After that I went to the Silhouette online store and started looking for phrases that would fit my themes.  Most of them are combinations of phrases that I pieced together to say what I wanted.  After all - each has to be unique to the recipient.  I created the basic cards assembly line style using the wonderful tutorial that you can find here.  Once each was created, I started making and adding the die cuts and phrases.

This is one of my favorites.  I love this fun cardstock by DCWV called 'The Green Stack'.  All of the papers are wonderful and I used them for several of the cards.  The tree is a Tim Holtz die cut that I cut from woodgrain paper.  I then enhanced the woodgrain with colored pencil to create a little carved heart in the trunk.  The little animals and tree leaves are all cut from a sheet of the cardstock.  The phrase was created using the Silhouette and then I stamped over it with a woodgrain rubber stamp I had made some time back.  This card probably took me the longest with fussy-cutting all of those cute critters and leaves.

For the next one I didn't hold out much hope of finding animals at the Silhouette online store to go well with the paper but then I came across this animal banner that had plenty of cute critters to choose from.  It was easy to separate out the parts I wanted and then do a print and cut.  I added little glitter hearts to each one and I think they look so cute.  The little snail was cut from 'The Green Stack' paper and the basic box was made from this paper stack, as well.  Is that snail cute, or what!

I made a sewing themed one for my granddaughter who is learning to sew.  These cut-outs came from a digital scrapbooking kit by Emeto Designs called 'Handmade'.  I imported some of the images into the Silhouette software and did a trace to create a cut line around each.  Then I did a print and cut.  The hearts were made with a Tim Holtz die from glitter cardstock.

For our little princess I, of course, needed a castle which I found at the Silhouette store and cut from glitter cardstock.  The phrase was a Silhouette design that I added some bling to and the rosette and heart in the background were some I had made before with Tim Holtz dies and had in my stash.

Last but not least, I made a sewing themed Valentine for my Mom and Aunt.  I haven't had a chance to deliver this one yet, but they probably won't mind if I show you in advance.  These are mostly die cuts that I made with Tim Holtz dies from recycled cardboard boxes and decorated.  The sewing machine I made with a custom rubber stamp and then embossed and cut out.
On the back of each I added a heart that I cut with my Silhouette (of course).  The pop-up cutouts are either suspended using strips of recycled packaging plastic or stuck directly to the supporting strips attached to the box.  I used a Scotch Advanced Tape Glider to stick everything together.  I found this to be invaluable since I didn't have to hold things in place while glue dried.  If I had used glue I would still be working on these!  :)

When the cards are folded they look like this and can be slipped in an envelope and mailed if you so desire.  With the extreme weather we have been having, I decided to hand deliver mine so that the tape wouldn't come lose and spoil the effect.  Plus, I had to include some fresh home-baked chocolate-chip cookies, which is also part of my tradition.  Doesn't that just make your mouth water...better go have lunch so I can have a cookie for desert.

As always, thanks for stopping!

Sunday, February 2, 2014

February Tim Tag

Last month I had almost everything Tim used in his January tag tutorial.  This month the only thing I had was the distress inks.  Not a problem - it just added to the challenge.  :)  You can check out Tim's tutorial here.

I have many of Tim's layering stencils - not the heart one, though, so I cut one using my Silhouette and a background I found in their online store.  While looking for a background, I found this cute lightbulb-with-heart illustration in the store, as well.  I printed it to a PDF file, pulled it into Photoshop, inverted the image and printed a negative to make a rubber stamp.  I used my Teresa Collins stamp maker to make the custom stamp.  (This is a fun little UV light box that turns special polymer packets into stamps.)  I'll be able to use the stamp again to make Valentine cards.

I substituted Ranger Antiquities Embossing Cement for the embossing powder Tim used on the large stamp.  I looked around my studio for white chalk but didn't have any.  But what I did find was Plaster-of-Paris powder, so I smeared some of that on my embossed image with my finger.

The sentiment I printed on vellum paper, cut out and stapled to the tag.  The arrow is from the TH Love Struck die and is cut from some foil-tape-covered card stock I had left over from last month's tag.  The paper lace at the bottom was leftover from another project and cut with the TH Vintage Lace Strip Die.  Cording used for the bow was from Michael's.

Lots of substitutions and it took extra time with making the stencil and the rubber stamp, but it is always fun to try new things and to see what you can accomplish with what you have on hand.  I call it 'Macgyver' art.

As always, thanks for stopping!