It’s the Handmade For Holidays Release at Taylored Expressions🎄

Hello friends!  I’m so excited to share the “Handmade for the Holidays” release at Taylored Expressions today!  You can go check out all the things right now in the store!  I’m extra excited that I get to be apart of this special release with them as a guest designer too!  (This was for my win during the TE 13th birthday celebration challenges I had entered from last month!🎉 Yay!)  There will also be a huge post about it on the Taylored Expressions Blog too!  I really hope that you enjoy the projects I’ve made to share with you and if you stop by the store, please let Taylor know that I sent you! 

For my first set of projects, I’ve made a fun Christmas décor item that you can gift for the Holidays, use as a center piece for your table setting, etc.  I’ve taken the Taylored Expressions (new) Accordion Tree die and used it to make a trio of trees with the “poinsettia style” attached to the accompanying TE Tree Stumps (sold separately) to go with this die and another two trees without the stumps.  For the trio of trees, I’ve used the  Merry Blooms Stamps, Stencil & Clear Combo set to create a background over a Toffee cardstock base inking and blending with Sweet Basil, Cherry Pop and Mulled Wine inks.  I’ve also used the same products to make the tag as well.  I’ve gold heat embossed the centers for the poinsettias in the background.  I’ve also taken the TE (new) Itty Bitty Sentiments Holiday stamp set and used the tiny images from the set to create backgrounds for the other two trees.  I’ve splattered the tree backgrounds as well as the tag background with acrylic white and gold paints. These die cut trees were glued back to back with the score line in the center as a guide which makes them 3D looking.  I’ll explain each item below:

This was such a fun 3D project to create!  I wanted all the trees together in one piece, so I thought it would be fun to grab one of these wood slices I’ve been hoarding forever and glue the trees to this base.  There is an accordion star that comes with the accordion tree die, but I thought it would be fun to take the TE Perfect Poinsettia die and cut out several of the smallest bloom to make that the “star topper” for the poinsettia tree.  I’ve used the coordinating stamps to stamp the “veins” and gold heat embossed the centers for them.  I folded them in half and glued it to the top of the tree.  I also attached some TE Gold Drip Drops for the “ornaments” over the tree (TE Drip Drops make perfect “ornaments” for these trees!) and added some gold twine bows front and back.  I’ve ink blended the edges of the poinsettia tree with Toffee ink and gold paint sponged on the poinsettia topper.

This is what the other side (back) of this piece looks like…so it’s visible from all angles.  Here you can better see the other two trees and how the backgrounds were made.  I’ve also added some thick white paint to the edges of them to make it look more like “snowed over” trees especially since they were splattered with white paint.  For the wood slice that the trees are attached to, I’ve used some Ranger Mica Flakes for a bit of sparkle attaching it with Multi-Medium Matte glue.

For the tag, I’ve die cut the background explained above with the TE Stacklets 2 die and wrapped some gold twine around it with the TE (new) Itty Bitty Sentiments & Tags Holiday set for the little tree with the gold heat embossed sentiment over it.  I’ve also gold heat embossed the large sentiment from the Joyful Season stamp set & dies that I’ve popped with my favorite product TE Sticky Strips.  I’ve cut out another layering piece behind the tag with Sweet Basil cardstock, punched a hole and added more gold twine.

And how stinkin’ CUTE are these guys?!  This is my second set of projects for this release using the NEW TE Snow Squad Dies & Clear Stamp Combo set.  As you can see, the cute die cut critters are made to perfectly fit the Tag Stacklet dies!  I’ve the Tag Stacklet 2 die set for my sweet penguin!  The critters are so easy to cut out and decorate them as you like!  I like that the clear stamp set comes with it to stamp in the eyes as those tiny dots can be so hard to deal with and loose!  You get a penguin, a polar bear and a snowman with this die set!

Again, I thought it would be fun to create a background for my card and tag set, so this time, I’ve taken the TE Let It Snow Layering Stencil set for a snowy background.  I’ve started with a Mint Julep cardstock base, blended the same color ink for the first layer, Sugar Cube ink for the second layer and for the third layer, I’ve used some TE Glitter Grab and immediately covered it with some TE Silver Glitter.  Love how it turned out with the subtle color! 

Starting with my card details, I’ve decided to give the snow squad critters soft colors with their scarves.  The clear stamp set with the dies also come with a two line image for adding details to the scarf, so I silver heat embossed those and then added some matching TE Tiny Diamonds Pastel in between those lines.  They matched up perfectly!  I inked around the edges of each die cut piece for the critters and stamped the face images including the cheeks which I off-stamped first to keep them light.  I used a white gel pen for highlight details.

I thought it would be fun to have these Snow Squad critters pop out from a snow drift, so I took some TE Sugar Cube Glitter Cardstock and cut out a “snow drift” with a piece of the their scarves over it and popped them up over the snowy background I’ve created using a TE Diagonal Stitch Rectangle Stacklets for the stitching details behind them which was layered over an A2 sized Sugar Cube top folding card base.  For the sentiment, I silver heat embossed it from the TE Winter Wishes clear stamp set over a Mint Julep cardstock that was cut out using the TE Stitched Banner Stacklets die

And of course I had to use the penguin again for my coordinating tag!  I’ve used part of the same background I’ve made for the card and cut it out using the TE Tag Stacklets 2 die set with another Sugar Cube cut out for the layering base.

I did the same thing for this tag that I did for the card above with the snow drift, but I also added a tiny tag that he’s holding with some Doodlebug Gray Twine.  The tag was created with the same TE (new) Itty Bitty Sentiments & Tag Holiday sets.  I’ve stamped the row of tiny trees from the set with the Mint Julep ink and then silver heat embossed the sentiment above it.  I’ve also used more of the TE Tiny Diamonds Pastel for the center of the bow on the present along with the penguin’s scarf.  I’ve punched a hole at the top and added more of the same twine at the top.

So how about you?!  Are you ready for the up-coming Holiday Season?  I sure hope that I was able to bring you some inspiration with your handmade projects for the Holidays!  Again, you can check out all of the brand new Taylored Expressions products in the store as it’s now been released!  Be sure to check out all of the wonderful inspiration on her blog HERE too!

Thanks so much for stopping in today!  I appreciate all of your kind support friends!  Have a great day!

Challenges:

  1. Happy Little Stampers – OCT Anything Goes with Dies (all projects are using dies!)
  2. Simon Says Stamps Wednesday – NOT a card
  3. Penny’s Paper-Crafty – Anything Goes using paper
  4. Krafty Chicks – Christmas
  5. Creative Knockouts – Embossing (I used heat embossing)
  6. The Crafter’s Cafe – Use a Stencil (used on all projects)
  7. Creative Fingers – #217 Anything Goes
  8. Lil Patch of Crafty Friends – Anything Goes

Having Some Halloween Fun!🎃

Hey friends!  I know it’s well into October and so you may be wondering where in the world have my Halloween posts been?  Today was gloomy and foggy out…and it’s getting evening, so it was a good time to post!  If you know me, then you know I love all things Halloween, but I’ve actually been in the background lurking with my Halloween projects! Bwhaa!!  I just haven’t had time to sit and make a post for them yet.  The reason for that is, of course, I’m taking too many classes and doing events that I’m like a “mad scientist” in the background with all of the crafting things, but haven’t been sharing them!  So, I’ve decided to set aside some time to create a post with all things Halloween! (Don’t worry, there will be more special ones coming too!)

Now isn’t this one a cutie?!  I’ve received this free digital image especially from the Whimsy Stamps World Card Making Day Event on Facebook that they usually hold every year and have some fun games and challenges.  This image was created by Crissy Armstrong of course and she even did a cute little tutorial with it, so I had to color it up!

I’ve used Copics for the coloring and even made a shadowy creepy black/gray grass along the bottom of the pumpkin.  The hat buckle was colored with a gold gel pen.  The sentiment came from an older Whimsy Stamps candy corn set I had in my stash.  For the background, I’ve used my favorite Whimsy Stamps Spider Web Frame background stamp to go around kitty.  I then used a couple of different Distress inks to sponge around the edges and then spritzed water over it & blotted it up with a paper towel to make it even “creepier” looking.  I layered it over an orange layer from my stash and then placed this over an A2 sized top folding card base.  I also die cut a bat from an old freebie from Whimsy Stamps years back to glue at the top of the scene and covered it with a glitter brush pen.  Super fun!

Halloween-31-Nights-blog-banner-2018-whimsy-stamps

Now I want to enter this into the annual Whimsy Stamps 31 Nights of Halloween that they do every year!  Check out the event with lots of Halloween inspiration & fun if you’re interested!  I always love to play along and I think Whimsy Stamps has some of THE best products for crafting Halloween!  CHECK THEM OUT HERE!!

And this is another card I made for the Whimsy Stamps WCMD Event challenge using a fun Autumn/Halloween mood board.  (The event is over, but it was super fun!)  The first thing about the mood board I noticed was all of the orange and fun jack-o-lanterns that popped out at me.  Plus, this was another cute freebie digital image given to us during the event.

So I colored up this dragon using mainly orange tone Copics with a “candy corn” effect.  I also used it for the die cut sentiment at the top that was cut out from the Whimsy Stamps Boo die set.  Hard to tell in the photo, but I covered it with the glitter brush pen too.  I popped up the “dragon guy” over a piece of the Whimsy Stamps 6×6 Haunted Paper Pack cut with the Whimsy Stamps Zig Zag Stitched Rectangle Dies.  It was all layered over a white A2 top folding card base.  I also added some yellow Stickles to the pumpkin’s face.

And since I’ve been doing so many classes, I thought I’d just create another gallery full of Halloween projects that I’ve done.  I have actually been working on some books and journals as well as mixed media projects and not sure if I’ll get them finished up before Halloween as I’ve been busy, but it’s always fun to get creative and messy especially for all things creepy and spooky!💀  Hope you enjoy! – (If you’re viewing this on my website, just click on the photos to enlarge them to see

Whew!  Was that a lot of Halloween or what?!  Many of these things just give me a big chuckle and I just think they’re so fun especially now that I’ve looked back on them.  Although many of these project were created earlier this Summer, I thought it would be a good time to share them with you. #MakeHalloween365  I still have more Halloween up my sleeve soon, so stayed tuned!

If you haven’t entered my give away yet, there’s still a few days left if you want to leave me a comment saying you’re interested!  CHECK OUT THE POST HERE  I will announce the winner by Oct 11th.

Thanks so much for stopping by this evening and I hope you’ve enjoyed my Halloween projects here!  HAPPY CRAFTING

Challenges:

  1. Crafty Animals – Anything Goes with animal
  2. Pearly Sparkles – Autumn and/or Halloween
  3. Colour Crazy Craft – Anything Goes with coloring
  4. Critter Crazy – Anything Goes with featured Critter
  5. The Crafter’s Cafe – Anything Goes
  6. Creative Fingers – Anything Goes
  7. Two Old Bats – Anything Goes Halloween
  8. Crafty Calendar – Halloween

Amazing Autumn🍂

Hello friends! Happy October! I hope that you’re having a great week so far and looking forward to doing something crafty this weekend for World Card Making Day!!🌍😀  I have decided to post something a bit early as I know there will be tons and tons of special posts planned by many, so I thought it best to post today instead!

IN THE MEANTIME, I DO HAVE A FUN GIVEWAY LOCATED ON MY POST BELOW OR CLICK HERE TO SEE IT!!  YOU HAVE UNTIL OCTOBER 10th TO ENTER…JUST LEAVE ME A COMMENT THAT YOU’RE INTERESTED!!

There are SO MANY things going on this time of the year and maybe that’s why I love Autumn so much. (WCD, Halloween, birthday, Cooler temps, warm clothes, Harvest, yummy foods, pretty colors, changing leaves, Halloween…oops already said that…but you know!)  I am thankful for all of it!  I have a couple of cards from a TE kit I recently got (yes, I know…another one to pile on!), but I fell in love with it so much & I am using it right away!😁

There is some copper EP that comes in the kit, so I heat embossed both the sunflower and wheat images together so that I could color them both at the same time with some watercolor.  I then cut them both out with the coordinating dies and set aside to work on my background.

The background was so fun!  I’ve used a Bristol Smooth watercolor panel and pulled out some Mica Stains and other sprays from my stash with a spray bottle filled with water and just played.  Some of it I splattered to make “dots”.  I used the “Burlap” background stamp in the kit and randomly stamped the background as well as heat embossed an element and sentiment from the stamp set.  I cut this panel with a die and wrapped some twine around it before attaching to a chocolate truffle card base.  I used some foam strips to pop up the flower and added a twine bow to it.  Finished it off with some Iridescent Rhinestones.

And this is the second card I’ve made using the wheat image that I previously colored with the sunflower image above.  What’s nice about this card is that the background was done using one of the foilable panels from the kit.  I found some copper foil and ran it through my laminator.  I lined up the cut out wheat image with the background and glued it over top cutting off the bottom portion that stuck out.  I also heat embossed a sentiment from the TE clear set in my stash and then punched it out with a circle punch.  I used my blender brush to very lightly add some Sea Salt ink at the top of the foiled panel as well as around the sentiment circle.

Lastly, I attached both the image and sentiment panels onto a piece of copper foil cardstock and then mounted it onto a side folding A2 white card base.  It was simple, but I like the shine it gives.

I had been discussing with someone recently how I really need to make more sympathy cards to have on hand…so here’s a start to getting a pile going hopefully.

Speaking of needing cards, all of the birthday cards from my last post have been spoken for!  Everyone seems to really need birthday cards and like having them on hand.  I can totally relate to that!  I think I need to get some “sorry I forgot” ones thrown in there too! 😂  

I still have some projects that I’ve been working on in the background from some classes I took over the Summer but still haven’t shared yet, so I thought I’d start a little bit at a time and I think these “Autumn themed” cards work with my post today:  (If you’re seeing this post on my website, just click on the photos below in the gallery to see them up close.)

I have taken SO MANY classes, so I still have many more projects to share as I go here!  Hope that you enjoy seeing what I’ve been up to!  It’s just fun to play around and in the process…no matter how little a piece I use…I am using my stash somehow and I’m very happy about that!  At least I’m still crafting anyway! LOL

Thanks for dropping in and have a great crafty weekend!

Challenges to enter for the first two cards only:

  1. Sketch Saturday – Sketch #679 (my second card turned)
  2. Pammie’s Inky Pinkies – Anything Goes
  3. Make My Monday – Embossing (heat on both cards)
  4. Penny’s Paper Crafty – Anything Goes using Paper
  5. Simon Says Stamp Wednesday – Anything Goes
  6. Happy Little Stampers – Watercolor (used on both images)
  7. Creative Knockouts – Fall is in the Air

Taylored Expressions Sept Birthday Challenges & Exciting News!🥳

Hello friends!  Happy Friday and are you ready for the weekend?  I’m supposed to be helping hubby with some outside work, but my allergies have been bad and I’m not feeling well.  Hopefully some medicine will be helping so we can get things finished up!

I have been a “grumpy” fan of Taylored Expressions for a few years as you might have seen in some of my past posts…so of course I get “pulled in” by other cute products too and that’s what happened…my story anyway!  In their FB fan group there is a monthly #TEmakerchallenge with prompts to follow as long as you use at least one of their products.  So I’ve made a fun card for this month I’d like to share:

Now how CUTE are these little critters?!  During TE’s Sept birthday month (13 years in business), they released a collection of birthday related items and this is the introduction of “Chip & Charlie Party“!  I’m saying that Chip is the bird and Charlie is the raccoon…not sure, but that’s what I’m saying! LOL  I’ve colored them up with Copic markers and added some shimmer to the balloon, party hats and cherry on cupcake with a glitter brush pen.  I’ve also added some highlights with a white gel pen.

I wanted something in the background, but not too distracting from the critters, so I stamped the Party Time background stamp in the same cardstock color (Cherry Pop) I then used the stencil from this combo set to white ink blend the tops of the hats.  The paper strip accents came from a TE paper pack I had in my stash.  I thought it needed an extra little image element on the front of the card, so I added some Doodlebug Twine and the party hat from Big Grumpy-Birthday, colored with Copics and popped up with foam tape on bottom corner. It was covered with a glitter brush pen and I also added a Doodlebug Matte Sprinkle at the top of the party hat and in the center of the twine bow.

You might notice that the image panel is not completed adhered to the card front and there’s a score mark in the center as well.  So I was going for something a bit different than a regular A2 birthday card…and the Sept challenge prompts are 1. Heat or non-heat embossing, 2. Napa Valley color quad and/or 3.  Something that begins with “E”  You have to pick at least one of these along with a TE product.  So for the “E” I’ve decided on making an Easel card…

So when you open up the bottom flap, you place it behind the popped up sentiment that was white heat embossed (also a challenge prompt) and cut out with the coordinating die from the “Get the Word Out-Celebrate” set.  I’ve also added some more of those yellow polka-dot papers and a thin strip of Cookie Monster cardstock which is what I used to mat behind the image panel as well as for the sentiment.  There is still room to line the inside of the card with a special birthday message.

I hope you’ve enjoyed my card and please see at the end of this post for other challenges I’ve entered…PLUS a special birthday give away if you’re interested!

____________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

**Now for some EXCITING NEWS**

Taylored Expressions was holding a special set of birthday challenges this month in their FB fans group with certain prompts for each one.  There was a set of four different challenges and I decided to make something for each challenge and I ended up winning a future guest design spot for a future release!  WHAT?!  Taylor shared which one was her favorite I made in THIS FB ANNOUNCEMENT, but I will share all the creations I made here: (click on the photos to enlarge them if you are viewing them on my blog.)

I honestly wasn’t thinking about winning anything! I was basically just enjoying the process of creating and pulling out some stash that I hadn’t yet used and wanted to use so I thought I’d just play along.  I was very surprised to see that I was picked as a winner!  Very humbled and honored by that!  So be watching for an up coming GDT post!

I have actually joined several of Taylor’s classes, virtual events, etc and have made many cool things during the time that I wasn’t blogging, so I never shared them… but like I said, I’ve been creating and having fun!  I do remember something fun she taught in a virtual event from July I was apart of that was Halloween themed, so I’ll have to pull those cards out soon as well since the time is coming up and I do love me some Halloween!🎃

One last thing!  With all of the fun and exciting things going, I realized it’s my birthday month as well!  I’m not 13, but let’s just say a few years older!😁  So I think the best thing to do for my birthday is to give rather than receive!  If you feel the same and think someone would enjoy this little Taylored Expressions bundle that I have shown above in the photo, let me know!  If you’d like to gift this for yourself, let me know!  I would love to give someone these extra set of items already in my stash to someone!  There is a Banner Simple Strips die, a 3 piece balloon layering stencil with a clear stamp set combo, a Cupcake ink pad (unwrapped, but NOT used at all, I just noticed I already had one after unwrapping it!) and a tiny cake and celebrate stamp set all from Taylored Expressions and perfect for party making! (There may be a few other things added as well!)

**Please just leave me a comment that you are interested in the TE give away by October 10th, 2021 and I will be happy to pick someone to send it out to!**

Whew!  I think that’s about it!  Thank you for stopping by friends and enjoy your weekend!

I’d like to enter the top easel card ONLY in these challenges:

  1. Taylored Expressions FB Fans Group Sept #TEmakerchallenge – heat/dry embossing and easel card for something beginning with “E”
  2. Festive Friday – #FF0093 I used: balloons, red & twineFestive-Friday-0093-challenge-card
  3. Krafty Chicks – All Occasions (birthday)

Some Boos on Friday the 13th!

Hello friends! Thank you for taking the time to stop in, say hello and I apologize if you’re experiencing any problems with anything on my blog. I hope that I can figure out what’s going on, but right now I seem to be able to create posts and I’ll just keep trying that.

I love Halloween and all of the fun that goes with it! I thought this would be a perfect day to share some “BOOs” since it’s Friday the 13th!

I’ve made a couple of cards with some cute Taylored Expressions products.  The backgrounds were fun to create and would be totally fine left like that with the “BOO” sentiment, but I also thought it would be great to pull in some images from an older TE stamp set.

Taylor has a couple of classes available and I had fun making these up!  I made a Z-fold card on the left and then used a stencil with glitter grab and black glitter on the second card.

Vicki-TE-Boo Bundle class II

This second set of cards was so fun as I did some foiling with my laminator along with the glitter grab paste.  I didn’t want to waste the negative from the foiled piece, so I made another card that I’ve attached a black piece of cardstock with an adhesive sheet for the foil to stick to.

Hope you’ve enjoyed my cards today.  Do you have any crafty plans?  I have a fun virtual Craft Camp going on and I’m looking forward to it!

Thanks for stopping in and have a great weekend!

Challenges:

  1.  Two Old Bats Halloween – Anything Goes Halloween
  2. Cute Card Thursday – Anything Goes
  3. Lil Patch of Crafty Friends – Anything Goes
  4. Creative Fingers – Anything Goes
  5. Crafty Sentiments – Anything Goes
  6. Alphabet – “J” is for Just ONE word

Hello! Anyone still with me?

Hello there friends!  I know that I had posted that I’m stepping away , but this blog is still “active” for now and I have been crafting anyway…   so after stepping away from it, I still follow along with different companies and inspiration on FB. But because I have SO much product and I wanted to be able to actually USE the things that I have instead of letting it just “sit around”, I was taking photos and posting (in FB groups) anyway, so I thought why not just BLOG IT?!  Not just the crafty aspect of it all, but blogging itself is a bit of a release too.  It gives me a “record” of my crafty experience, what and why I might have done something…so I decided for my own personal reasons, to come back to this “old dinosaur” method to enhance my crafty journey.  It may not be exactly like it had been before, but that’s how crafty journeys evolve.

It’s been fun and busy with hubby being retired and home, but after getting use to it and traveling a bit, I was and still am taking a few classes here and there and just having fun.  Because of the pandemic, so many companies have turned to “online” classes, conventions, challenges, etc so I thought it was a great opportunity to try some of that out without the expense of traveling for it!  I’ve done several actually, but just mainly posted within the groups they were made for.  Then I started thinking once again about all of the “stuff” I have and still ARE accumulating…so my mission is to actually use the product I have. I will try NOT to keep purchasing in the future!  (Let’s see how THAT goes! LOL!)  The blogging might help keep me motivated in doing that too…I hope!

So if you are still following…Wow!  Thanks for being here!!  Not really sure how often I will be posting, but this will be mainly where I will be sharing anything “crafty” that I’m doing.  Maybe I can inspire someone to use their own crafty stash?  Hope you can join the fun with me here too! 🙂  

I’m starting with a couple of Summer classes that I just recently completed with Taylored Expressions.  She did a class earlier this month with a set of 4 completed cards using similar style products for each class.  The first one was called the “Gifted” class:

The top left card was used with a watercolor wash for the background.  There’s a cover plate die that cuts out all those presents which I used on the card below that one to arrange over the sponged square area.  The cards on the right side were both ink blended with the bottom right card using a stencil.  I’ve also added some sparkle with a glitter brush pen and some glossy accents to the die cut “YAY!” lettering.  Envelopes with seals were also included with this class set which you can see on the far right of the photo.  I always need birthday cards, so these will work out great!

This next set is also from Taylored Expressions that I just finished up this weekend.  Really enjoyed this class with some things that I forget about doing with my cards:

This class was called the “Diamond Botanical” class with another set of 4 cards.  The top left card was fun with a more mixed media style using paint for the background and splatters.  The only thing that I changed up was the background stamp.  I didn’t have the stamp from Taylored Expressions that they used in the class, so I used a Stampin’ Up! Birch background stamp I found in my stash. (So yay that I’ve already started with using my existing stash with the new!)

The top right card is a shaker card and the bottom left card is a gate fold card with the sentiment panel helping to hold it in place.  Again, with this class we were given envelopes with the matching seals off to the right.  These were fun little classes to take and get some cards completed with!

Hope you enjoyed these sets too and were inspired!  Are you taking any virtual or in-person classes or events this Summer?  Has your crafting experience changed for you recently and what things have you changed about it?

I know I’ll be back again with more creations I’ve been working on. Thanks for dropping in and I hope you’re all doing really well!  Have a great day! 🙂

Christmas Cards, Projects and Cookies…ready for Santa!🎅

Hello friends!  We’re here!  We made it to Christmas Eve!😀  My cards have been sent out, my cookies are done and delivered as well as my other little gifts.  This is quite a long post, so grab your hot cocoa or whatever your favorite beverage is and a Christmas cookie or treat and let’s see what I’ve been doing this past week:

So starting with my Christmas cards, I usually make around 40ish cards each year give-or-take and I only like to make a handful of them at a time for not only boredom of the same design, but for product depletion as well.

So back in July, I purchased this really adorable card kit from Taylored Expressions (included was the Frosty Background Cling and Clear Combo set + more.) that came with coordinated colored envelopes as well as the seals.  So I made a set of four different colored designs in two of each one.  The snowmen were popped up with foam squares over the backgrounds and I added some fun Snowflake bits that were included with the kit as well.

Next up is another set of cards I made using some more gorgeous products from Taylored Expressions.  I’ve used the Seasonal Sprig stamp and die combo along with the stencil to color them in with.  Some of these I ink blended the backgrounds, so I just used cardstock with a watermark effect and a white heat embossed sentiment.  I used the die to cut an extra frame behind the stamped one for added stability.  I made 4 of each design shown here for a total of 16.

I then made another set of four using the same products, but for these I gold heat embossed the image and sentiment and then used some watercolor for coloring it in with.  I also got some of these coordinating envelope seals to use on about 10 of the 16 cards.  (No longer available in store.)  I’ve also partially ink blended the background behind the frame on these as well.

Here are some cards that I’ve actually made a total of 8 similar designs using the large wording background dies from My Favorite Things.  I’ve used the “Sending Christmas Joy” and “I Really Miss You” dies for all eight of these, but only after I stamped the backgrounds.  I used the MFT Knitted Sweater BG stamp and the Alley Cat BG stamp for a couple of backgrounds before I die cut them.  Then I used the die cut letters to place into the other backgrounds on the cards to get that look.  So it was like creating 2 cards with one cut and filling it all in.  (For the Alley Cat background stamp, I ink blended the background and stamped it as a watermark effect over it and then took the “left over” ink from that to stamp it again to create an additional BG.) I then cut out each of the panels with the MFT Wonky Stitched Rectangle die and placed over a white A2 sized side folding card base.  The penguin image is from the MFT Holiday Penguins set and the bird on the other one is from the MFT “Tweet Holidays” (Not found in store.)

And then of course you don’t want to waste any backgrounds you’ve made, so you make more cards!  I’ve used a couple more images to personalize the design for people too.  I combined the sets Newton’s Nook Whispering Pines and the Lawn Fawn Winter Skies.  I think I took a set from them to create a sentiment to fit my cards as well. (not sure from which set.)

For the other card, I took this cute image from the Whimsy Stamps Gnome for Christmas stamp set, colored him up with my copics and cut him out with the coordinating die to pop him up over my card.

And then for these set of 4 cards, I’ve just die cut a snowflake from some glitter paper and glued in the center of the “O” on each design and popped up a sentiment over that with foam tape stamped and die cut from the Taylored Expressions Mini Strips – Holiday and Mini Strips die.

And as you remember in a previous post those “recycled Crystal Light containers” that I make, I made another set of three of them here.  This time, I’ve used this snowman stamp.  I just used my scissors to fussy cut those cute snowmen out as they were pretty simple to do and then I popped them up over an ink blended tag using the stencil over them.  I used coordinating cardstock and silver heat embossed the sentiment strip at the bottom and of course added my “snowman soup” poem on the back of the containers.  I’ve also added a layer of silver mirror cardstock behind the tags.

And I made a couple of these darling ornaments from a fairly “new to me” company that I was actually introduced to with product during my time as a {Cupcake Inspirations} sweetie DT when they sponsored a challenge a while back.  P.S.  There are a few more days left to enter their current challenge of “SNOWFLAKES” if you want to pop on over to join us too!!

But I was so taken with this darling image and kit from Inky Stampers from this Snow Much Fun Kit.  You get the snowflake ornament (with string), the stamp set and die, papers, wobbler, along with glitter to complete it too!  Well I wanted to make more than one, so I grabbed another set of Snowflake Ornaments from the store and just added my own papers and glitter from my stash to make it.  

And of course, last, but certainly not least, here’s all of the Christmas treats that I’ve made to give out to family and of course for hubby to eat up as we went along too!😋  I have made from top left on down:  Homemade caramel corn, white chocolate covered pretzels, peanut butter fudge, molasses cookies, chocolate covered caramel pecan clusters, scottish peanut butter cereal cookies, chocolate fudge, snickerdoodles and chocolate crinkles.  Of course each family member has a favorite they like me to make and there are a couple of old recipes passed down from grandparents/parents that I like to add in as well.  They’re all delicious and I enjoyed making them.

Whew!  I’m ready for that “Looong winter’s nap” now!!🥱  I hope you’ve enjoyed my post today and it has brought you some inspiration and/or a smile somehow!  I have received some beautiful Christmas cards and I so appreciate them and have them all displayed by being pinned around my garland in our pass-through in the living room/dining area.  I think after a bit of rest, I need to finish up my projects for the “Bugaboo Christmas Chaos” that I haulted in the middle for to finish up Christmas projects….so I’ll be back soon with that.

In the meantime, I wish a MERRY CHRISTMAS TO ALL AND TO ALL A GOOD NIGHT!!🎅

Crafty Chefs Cooking Up Some BOOs and Stamp Joy Results!👻

Hello there friends!  I know that my blog doesn’t appear to look as if I’ve been doing much, but the exact opposite is happening right now! LOL!  I’ve been busy crafting away and feeling a bit overwhelmed to say the least!  Now that I have my computer issues solved, hoping I can get back into things and get caught up!  Videos are in cache and I also am REALLY excited to be doing the Whimsy Stamps Virtual Retreat this weekend and it starts tonight and lasts through Sunday too!  Woohoo!! – – – – So more crafting is coming!  Snacks are stocked and the craft table is ready to go!!😉

Halloween-31-Nights-blog-banner-2018-whimsy-stamps

Today I have this fun little Halloween treat bag to share that I’ve made for one of the grands and I thought I’d pair it with the Crafty Chefs October Recipe. (Check out the link if you’re interested in joining in the recipe fun with us!) AND I’m also including this into the fun annual Whimsy Stamps 31 Nights of Halloween too!

So I pulled out these stack of paper lunch bags I had and thought it would be a great little bag to decorate for the grands…I have more coming, but I’ve pulled out some papers and I had so much fun coloring up this darling digital image by Crissy Armstrong from Whimsy Stamps called “Boo!” – of course!

For the Crafty Chefs October recipe, the lovely Carol has given the following recipe for us this month:

Must Have:

  1. Add a Tag (from previous chef)
  2. Have or create a pocket
  3. 2-3 colors next to each other on the color wheel
  4. Use a die 

Can Have:

  1. Mirror Cardstock (passing onto next chef)
  2. Charm
  3. Stitching

I cut out the image with the Whimsy Stamps Notched Square Dies and then cut out a yellow and an orange panel to layer behind it. (colors for recipe)  I’ve also used a strip of the orange cardstock to go above and below the spooky eyes decorative paper from my stash.  I used a black marker to add stitch marks to the strips. (stitching for recipe)  I’ve also used some silver mirror cardstock to cut out the “boo” letters from the Whimsy Stamps Boo die set and attached it at the bottom with the swirly eyes too. (mirror cardstock for recipe)  I also added some tiny stars from the mirror cardstock to each corner of the image panel. 

And lastly for the Crafty Chefs recipe, I’ve used foam tape to pop up the image panel and left a section that fit around my orange die cut tag from an older Whimsy Stamps die.  I stamped the “pull” word on it, punched a hole and added a string so it was easier to grab.  Check it out below to see the tag…

When you lift the tag up, you can see the cute little ghost with a message. It was from a Halloween paper pack in my stash that I glued over the orange die cut tag. I took a white gel pen to add more stitching detail to it.

Here’s also a closer view of the image I colored up with Copic markers. I thought it would be fun to add a moon behind the ghost, so I just drew it in with my Copic markers and added a fun yellow glow behind the images. I also covered it with a glitter brush pen and then I took some Stickles glitter and added it to the pumpkin’s face. I also took a white gel pen and dotted the inside of the ghost’s eyes…thought it would give it character.

For the background behind the image, I took a cloud stencil to blend in some clouds with Black Soot Distress Ink.

I hope you’ve enjoyed my Halloween treat bag today! Check out the challenges I’m entering it for below!


So last weekend I was involved in another virtual stamp retreat from Taylored Expressions called Stamp Joy.  As I had mentioned, it’s so much fun to experience the “in person” part of it, but I think they did such an amazing job with it and it was so much fun to be apart of the crafty fun and laughter.  Here’s my results:

I have so many cards and I have even started up a collection of FOUR Christmas cards for the year! Yay!

I decided to participate in the FULL experience of it, so I opted to do the Friday classes which are the top left 4 butterfly cards I completed. I love the projects we received for everything and I know I’ll be making more things!

The other cards were all created for the 7 different Make-n-Takes on Saturday. One of the seven was the total of mass produced set of 4 snowflake cards. I have tweaked a few things about the cards here and there, but not much was changed as we were pretty much provided everything needed including some cool products!😀

At the bottom, I took a photo of one of the stamp sets that was provided to use for the event. There was no graphic photo on this stamp set as it was left blank because it was especially put together for this event. It’s a collection of certain stamps in several of the most popular sets from their store which we used throughout the Make-n-Takes. So what I did was take a sharpie marker and wrote: “Taylored Expressions Stamp Joy 2020 Pandemic Edition”. LOL


Thanks so much for stopping in today my friends!  I will be very busy crafting away this weekend, so I’ll be having fun and seeing you all very soon!  Hope you have a wonderful weekend ahead!

Challenges (for treat bag only):

  1. Cute Card Thursday – Halloween 
  2. Crafty Creations – #414 Anything Goes
  3. Colour Crazy Craft – Anything Goes + coloring
  4. Sweet Stampers – #49 Autumn or Halloween
  5. Not Just Cards – Anything Goes
  6. International Art & Soul – Halloween
  7. Pammie’s Inky Pinkies – PIP2041 Anything Goes
  8. Creatalicious – #197 Anything Goes optional Halloween
  9. This is Halloween – #2 Anything Goes Halloween (entry 2) **NEW!!
  10. Two Old Bats Halloween – #1 Anything Goes Halloween (entry 2) **NEW!!

The “Power of Practice” Blog Hop

Hello friends! I’m so excited to be sharing a special collaboration blog hop with my fellow crafty friends collab FB group as we share our own personal progression on how practice over time can help to increase your confidence and skills within your crafting journey. (blog hop links are at bottom of post.)

So please grab your favorite beverage and join us in this fun and informative blog hop that shows how “the power of practice” can be utilized in your own crafting! (highlights are done in red.)

  • I would like to start off by stating each person’s experience is their own journey and will run on it’s own pace which is something that we all need to be aware of and patient with.  Some particular skills will take much longer to grasp than others and you need to take it easy on yourself without harsh judgement.  Just enjoy the process and have fun with it!  (That was and still is the hardest thing for me to learn.)

Although I’ve been paper crafting for the last 20 years or so, I’ve been involved in several different crafts throughout my entire childhood or since I could hold a crayon in my hand!  My grandmother as well as my mother has passed down their experience with crafts which I learned from and picked up many others along the way including what I love today.  So some things I do may already come naturally for me without recognizing where it came from because it was taught to me long ago.  There are some things, however, that I’ve had to spend the time learning.

Now taking classes aren’t the ONLY way to learn something for sure!  Good ole “Trial and Error” are great for learning and gaining personal experience from…which I tend to learn the most from actually!😁  Another thing that helps is new tools/products to help make the process easier or look more “finished” or “professional” in nature.  When I first started with my stamps, there was not a common heat tool for instance.  I had to heat emboss over a stove!  So times have changed as well as techniques and inspiration. Inspiration is EVERYWHERE over the Internet too!  Many people have so many clever ideas…I wish I could keep up with them all!  Some things may not be of interest to you and others may intrigue or intimidate you.  Find what interests you the MOST..at the time…and work on it because you will love learning about it which means you will gain more knowledge from it.  You don’t have to share with others what you do as long as YOU enjoy what you’re doing.  Do what feels right to you and your journey.  It’s never about others, it’s about YOU!

 

I feel like I could write an entire book on just this matter, but since this is a visual craft, it’s better to “see” with your eyes sometimes or show how things can come together…or not!🤨

I’m starting with a photo of a card I had made back in 2007 when I had already been a year into having a blog and was still a Stampin’ Up! demonstrator at the time.  Even the technology of simply taking a photograph has improved tremendously over the years…

crafting encouragement singleNeighborhood_by_basement_stamper

I no longer have most of the products used here and I had to lift the photo from my Splitcoaststampers gallery as they have stored my oldest photos I have anywhere.  This was the first place that I shared anything I made online. (There are 124 pages of my gallery and if you look through, you will see the progression over time.)

 

Now I could really criticize myself and pick this all apart, but it was part of my process at the time.  And at that time, I was happy with it.  It looks like I’ve colored with ink pads and a blender pen, cut out the images with scissors as well as cut fringes of the grass border. (tools have improved since and many purchases have been made as well!😊)    As we move forward, I can share how I updated that design today:

Vicki-CraftyChefs and POPhop

What I have decided to do was to take the photo of the older card above and make an updated version of the same design, but with the mindset and techniques that I’ve learned since.  You can see that my coloring has improved as well as the different tools and items that have been updated to help with my design execution.  I still used similar colors, similar layout design as well as coloring an image, but just maybe updated the look from the practicing of not just the coloring over time, but the practice of just cutting the layers and putting things together as compared to years past.  Just meerily putting together card after card has helped me with the practice and made me better aware.  So you can see how just putting together a card in general, with practice, can help improve skills!

  • Another tip I find helpful is to join your fellow crafty friends in groups and collaborations like this blog hop as well as other groups which is what I’ve also made this card for, called “The Crafty Chefs“, where we take turns coming up with a new “recipe” to follow each month.  There’s no pressure, just a group of friends coming together, learning from each other through challenges, and inspiring one another as we enjoy our love of crafting!  For me, this is a huge deal.  Check out the link above if you’re interested in joining with us!  It’s still fun to craft, but it’s even better when it’s shared with someone.  So here’s the September Crafty Chef’s recipe that our head chef Linda has come up with for us to use:

Crafty Chefs Sept recipe

(I have used ALL of the “must do” items and then added a couple of pearls from the “can do” items.)

I have found that within the last several years, many people enjoy watching video tutorials on You Tube..which makes sense because seeing someone actually doing something or putting something together is a better way to learn rather than just seeing a finished photo of a project.  So to see how I’ve made my latest card for my son’s birthday, check it out below or CLICK HERE to view on my You Tube channel:

Hopefully through the video you were able to learn a few things that you can incorporate into your own card making.  Sometimes we can improve upon ourselves by even trying to recreate something we’ve done in the past and add some new things you’ve learned along the way.  It’s a great way to see how far you’ve come along and not be so critical of yourself to remind you that you are always learning, as I still am right now as well.

 

I have to chuckle at this card for my son’s birthday as he is a fun-loving jokster that will appreciate this along with the fact that it’s a bear image.  He was nicknamed “Bear” in his school years, so I thought these Big Grumpy products from Taylored Expressions would work perfectly for this!  I’ve also used the Big Grumpy Birthday stamps to go with him along with the other products used in my video above.

For the sparkle, I’ve taken some Stickles Star Dust glitter and added to the birthday hat as well as the center of the bow in the present.  I used a glitter brush pen over the balloon and bow.  I added dots to his cheeks, hat and the present with a white gel pen.  I forgot to mention in the video that I’ve added a couple of brown pearls to the blue strip so that I added something from the “can do” list for the Crafty Chefs recipe!😉

I really hope that this post was helpful as well as enjoyable for you and that you received some benefit for taking the time to read over it.  I know that I will be looking forward to seeing what my other crafty friends have to share and inspire me with!  I think there is something to learn from everyone no matter how long you’ve been doing it.  

  • The power of practice simply means, to me, being able to refine your skills into something that you want to be better at, take in more information or take it to the limits of your ability.  This is done by repeating often and over time to increase or add to your knowledge of what you’re trying to improve upon. If we are not trying new things, then we are not learning or growing as individuals.

Please be sure to check out the following crafty friends’ blogs below to see their take on this blog hop concept:

Thanks so much for stopping by my friends and I’ll be seeing you again soon!

Challenges:

  1. Inkspirational – Birthday PhotoChallenge221
  2. Crafty Friends – Anything Goes
  3. Crafty Calendar – Anything Goes
  4. Lil Patch of Crafty Friends – Anything Goes
  5. Dragonfly Dreams – Happy Birtdhay Traci!
  6. The Corrosive Challenge – #9 Sept Anything Goes
  7. Creative Moments – #198 Anything Goes optional:  Make it Funny
  8. AAA Birthday – #17 Animals & Critters#17 bottom badge
  9. Creative Craft Cottage – #133 Include and Animal
  10. Simon Says Stamp Wednesday Challenge – Humorus/Fun Card

Making Masculine

Hey there friends!  I know that Father’s Day is well past us, but I wanted to share some cards I made with a masculine style that don’t necessarily have to be for Father’s Day, but for birthdays, signficant other, thank you, etc.

I have lots of males in my family that I need to have cards on hand for, so these will come in handy when I do need to grab one in the future for sure:

Vicki-MFTToolAround

This is one that I made which can be suited for basically my hubby at some point! LOL!  The fun dies, and sentiment including the pattern paper all came from My Favorite Things.  I popped up the background over my brown card base, cut out the different tool pieces in wood paper, black paper and silver metallic paper.  (I later noticed that one of my metal peg pieces look “off” with the tool…and I’m sure my guy recpient will notice! LOL!)

I silver heat embossed the sentiment over the brown cardstock and cut out my own design with my scissors with it and then went over the edges with some silver ink.  I finished this off with some wooden dots I’ve had in my stash for a while.

Vicki-GrillMaster

My next card was for my hubby and it was made for him for Father’s Day which is has already received.  He thought the added flames on the grill were pretty cool.  LOL!

I actually had another card that was “grill master”theme that I had made for my own dad, but of course forgot to take a photo of it before I gave it.  I did use the “left over” letters (the negatives) from his card, however, to place over top of the grill on this card which was cut out using my Cricut machine.

I sponged some clouds in the background of my card panel here and added some grey “smoke” clouds around the grill.  The flames were also the “negative” portion from my other card that was used to attach between the grill on this one.

I added details to the grill with a little bit of ink sponging along the edges as well as color portions of it with a glitter gel pen.  I die cut a border for the grass and added shadows with Copic markers.  I had stamped my original sentiment crooked, so I ended up white heat embossing it over the cardstock, cutting it out and placing it over my boo-boo!  I added some hearts around it as well.

Vicki-TE-plaidshirt

For my last card, I was wanting to try out the plaid stencil set that I got from Taylored Expressions and made a “shirt card” with it.  Really love that stencil BTW!  Very easy to create some fun and unique plaid designs with it!  I sponged mine over kraft cardstock.

I wasn’t sure what to do for the pocket because I don’t have any “pocket” type dies, so looking through my dies, I thought that this Labels Stacklets 10 would work for a pocket which was die cut from a plaid piece and then I folded the top portion over and just glued it along the edges so that I could actually use the pocket for something like sticking in some cash.

Lastly, I white heat embossed the sentiment from the Mini Strips-Life Saver and cut it out with the coordinating die to go over the pocket flap.  I cut an additional strip from the plaid to go along the edge and added a “collar” at the top.  Finished it off with drawing stitch lines and adding buttons.

—————————————————————————————————

These are all so different, but I sure had fun playing with different items in my stash and now have some masculine style cards ready to go as well!  I hope you’ve enjoyed them to or has given you some inspiration in some way!

Thanks for dropping in!  I have a post coming up with some really fun news so stay tuned in!!  I’ll be seeing you soon!

Challenges:

  1.  Sweet Stampin – Create Your Own Background (card #2 stenciled clouds card #3 stenciled plaid)
  2. Crafty Cardmakers – Create Your Own Background (same as above)
  3. Arty Divas – Anything Goes
  4. Double D – Stitches (faux, real or dies) top 2 card dies, last card faux
  5. A Perfect Time to Craft – Anything Goes
  6. Craft Rocket – For the Men/Boys