January 30, 2017

With Sympathy Card

Here is another one of our cards we made during this months card class. This time the card base is cut from a piece of grey cardstock at 4 1/4" x 11" and scored at 5 1/2".

We adhered a piece of black cardstock 4" x 5 1/2" in the center of the front, leaving just a small piece of the grey on the left and right side. The lily flowers are cut with the new Close to My Heart exclusive "Flower Market" cartridge. These flowers are a four part construction. The first layer is the green stem and the flower itself. The next layers are cut from yellow, cream and white cardstock and layered right on top of each other. Love love the 3-D effect you create with these layering techniques. 

Now all that is left is to arrange the flowers on the front of the card. We stamped out phrase on a piece of cream cardstock. The green and cream flags are cut at the same size and off set from each other with foam dots. Last we arranged the leaves and the little pearls.

Stay tuned for more to come .... 

January 27, 2017

Technique: Shaving Cream Marbleizing - Part 1

Let's get a little bit messy, shall we? For this months blog hop technique it is best to stay close to a sink, because you will need some water at one point in time.This months blog hop was all about shaving cream and paper marbleizing. 

All the things you need:

- You will need some good old fashion shaving cream. Don't use gel or other forms, since they will not work with this technique
- You will also need some type of flat container that will keep you shaving cream put. I used a baking sheet with a small rim and covered it in aluminium foil. Depending on the sizes of paper you want to use, you can also use a paper or plastic plate.
- You need some tool to smooth out the shaving cream once sprayed inside the pan and a sturdy straw or a wooden skewer to mix your colors.
- I also used a squeegee that was at least 8 1/2" wide to fit over my whole sheet of paper. If you use smaller pieces of paper you can use a smaller squeegee. 

- Colors: Here you can use a lot of different mediums all depending on what you have in your stack. Re-inkers work perfect, so does acrylic paints (this is what I used here), powder inks, food colors and one of my fellow hopper even used alcohol inks (for these, you must cover your counter since they stain).

- Papers: You should use cardstock that is on the heavier side, because the moisture in the shaving cream will soak into the paper. Once the paper is too wet, you can't scrape the excess off anymore! I used 8 1/2" x 11" pieces of paper and a couple of quarter sized ones.

Let the messy part begin:

First you will have to spray a nice thick layer of shaving foam into you pan to cover almost the complete inside. Use a tool and flatten the foam to keep an nice even surface.

Next I took my colors and started dripping them here and there on top of the foam.  I added just a little of my metallic gold color in between the dots.
After my first run I prepared my pan with foam again and this time I swirled my colors all over the place.

No matter what "design" you come up with, the intensity of the marbleizing later comes from the amount of mixing you do. In next weeks part 2 I will show you the different outcomes of these starts.
Now comes the fun part. Use your skewer and start mixing the colors. 

In this example I left quite a bit of color untouched and I think especially with the acrylic colors I used, these leave a really bold impression later on the papers.

With the second run I mixed my colors a lot more so the color was really mixed well with the foam and the other colors.

Still you will get an awesome marbleizing effect on your paper.

The next step would be to take a piece of cardstock and place it on top of the foam and press it into the mixture. Use some pressure but not too much so the paper sinks in too deep. 

Carefully pull the paper away from the foam mixture and make sure the foam sticks to the paper. If you see plain paper, push this part lightly back into the foam and carefully continue to lift it out of the pan.

My first paper I placed on some old newspaper that I laid out on top of my counter. Not a good idea, since the newspaper absorbs some of the moister and it makes it really hard to remove the excess foam.

So the second one I did, I placed the paper directly on my counter top (we have an old one, if yours is more precious you might want to use a plastic mat). 

I know the paper looks funny when you pull it out of the foam, but let it rest for about 2 minutes before you remove the excess foam.
To remove the foam, grab your squeegee and place it on the top of your paper. Press down firmly and pull across the paper in one swoop. Don't stop or don't go over it in multiple attempts, otherwise you are left with streaks.
Let your paper dry completely! 

So what should you do with the excess that you scraped off? Well, the first time I washed it all off, then repeated the whole process, but that's a lot of wasted material...so...

I placed the access back in the pan and flatten it out. You could place you paper back in right away and the impression will be a softer and more even coloring.
In my case, my foam had a pretty consistent peachy color, so I added some more of my darker orange, some of the gold and I added some white paint. Since I used paint, the white acts just like the rest of the paints.
With this one I ended up with a peach paper with dark, white and gold marbles. 

Ones I used the same mixture 3-4 times I clean the foam out and started all over again. You will get a lot of different results all depending on the type of colors/ inks you use. Have fun experimenting and best of it all, once the paper is dry (if it is wrinkled, place it for a few days under some heavy books) it smells so good :-)

Stay tuned for next Friday to see the paper results I got with my different methods and have a more detailed look at the cards I made during the week.

Leave me a comment and let me know what you think of this technique and if you have or if you are going to try this one.....It's fun !!! 

January 25, 2017

Flower Card - For a Speedy Recovery

As I mentioned before, the new Close to My Heart Cricut Cartridge "Flower Market" is by far my favorite of the cartridges we have in the program. It contains so many wonderful flower options...let's see what I have picked for this class project:

Starting with a regular 4 1/4" x 5 1/2" card base and a piece of thistle cardstock cut about 1/4" smaller and a piece of white cardstock completing the card base.

Now on to the embellishments.... both flowers and the paper bag with the bow are all cut from the new "Flower Market" Cricut cartridge.  Both flowers are cut in multiple layers. The cartridge contains all the layers and will cut them automatically in the size you choose. All you are left to do is pick your paper colors.

The purple flower is cut from green cardstock for the base, then a super light pink which only peaks through a little (hard to see here, but see the picture at the end), followed by a dark purple layer and the medium purple to finish it off. Leaves are cut separate so you can position them anywhere on the flower you like. To archive the 3-D look of the flower, simple adhere the layer in order as you can see them on you cutting file. I adhered them with some liquid glue and no foam dots (this wouldn't work well here). Each layer lines up with the previous one to make the assembling really simple. The same goes with the pink flower on the right.

The bag comes cut in two pieces, the dark background and a lighter brown front. I adhered the front part only along the edges and left the top part open. This allowed me to stick my assembled flowers inside the bag. Once they were positioned in the way I wanted them, I flipped the bag with flowers over and put adhesive on the whole piece. Turn it over and place it on your project. You don't need to apply adhesive on every little piece, just the bag and the main flowers will do. All that was left now was to add my leaves and the little bow and decorate with some rhinestones...and in the inside.
Would you like to learn how to make these and other flowers? Would you love to make some cards ever month with a fun group of ladies? Or would you like to join a small class with more individual topic planing? In any event, please feel free to contact me for more details....comment below if you like this card or the flowers etc....and stay tuned for more!

January 23, 2017

Sympathy Card - Our thoughts are with you

A new year brings on a new round of card making classes. Here is one of the cards we made for January and the first one my ladies had to use the embossing machine themselves LOL.

I used to crank these papers through, but my arms are getting tired the more our group is growing and I thought they might like the new experience...and they did.

We started with a card base of 4 1/4" x 5 1/2" in whisper (light gray) Close to My Heart cardstock. We added a piece of white cardstock that we run through an embossing machine. 

I cut the leave branches from whisper (light gray), slate (dark gray) and crystal blue cardstock and used the brand new Close to My Heart exclusive Cricut Cartridge "Flower Market".
I love love this new cartridge because it has so many great items on it. I also cut out an oval for the phrase we stamped on and a smaller frame oval that was placed on top of the stamped one. Inside we added another phrase and added a couple of grey rhinestones to finish up this card.

Stay tuned for more cards to come and make sure to follow my "Friday Technique" posts. If you like to know more about these or other projects from the blog, please feel free to contact me. If you like to join my monthly classes, please contact me as well for more information....

January 20, 2017

A Year of Card Techniques ~ January Blog Hop ~ Shaving Cream

Welcome to a Year of Card Techniques 2017:
January - Shaving Cream Marbleizing

Another year of fun techniques is starting and we made it even more exciting. There will be a special prize waiting for one of you each month, so remember to comment below. And since we love comments please do so each month and spread the word. More details about this months prizes will be at the end of this post.

Now on with the projects:

So after I made a little mess in my kitchen, I ended up with quite a few samples. I have to say, even so this technique is a bit messy, it is also a lot of fun and your cards smell really good and so does your kitchen afterwards ... LOL! 

For this technique you don't really need a lot of things. I used some cheap shaving cream (you have to use old fashion shaving cream not gels), a baking sheet covered with aluminum foil, a squeegee that fitted over my paper and all of this placed right next to the sink.

Since I could only find two re-inkers in my stack that didn't really worked together, I went to my local craft store and picked up some inexpensive acrylic paints. One set was peach, dark-orange and gold and the other combination was light blue, blue, teal and silver. I also bought some white too.

I was experimenting a lot and while some of my creations show a ton of marbling, others are a bit more settled. Never the less I picked only a few for this months challenge and keep the rest for projects sometime later this year. I have a couple ideas in my head :-) 

I will have a more detailed description on how this technique works and how I made the cards shown here on my "Technique Friday" segment here on the blog.

So what do you do with all these wonderful creations? Well for me it was all about the beautiful marbling. You want to show off these colors and designs, right? 

This z-fold card was on my list to make for a while and with these wonderful marbled papers I thought I found the perfect match. The card design leaves me a lot of opportunity to show of the beautiful paper.

My second thought was, could I use dies to cut out the paper or would the paper loose its interest? Well, I think you can use dies, but they should have lot's of big areas that will show the paper intact. I think the one I used works fine, but I definitely not use a very delicate one.

My next example is another z-fold card but this time I used the blue toned marble paper. The closed card shows the marbled paper just a bit, but once you open the card you will see the whole beauty of it.  

Last but not least....My "Happy Birthday & Best Fishes" card. This blue marble paper just reminded me of the ocean. So I couldn't resist.... I had to make some waves ...

Well, what do you think about these projects? We love to hear from you, please leave a comment and hop over to the talented Wilma ..... and see what she came up with this month.

In case you got lost on the way, here is today's lineup:

Claudia - You are here...

Here is this months chance to win:

Prize Info: One winner will be chosen from all comments on the hop as of February 4th and receive one "Sending Love" Designer Series 6"x6" paper stack and ribbon combo. The January winner will be announced in February's hop! 

Don't forget to comment and stay tuned...a detailed description of the technique will follow on the next two Fridays on my blog. 

January 13, 2017

Anniversary Card - "Still Got It"

Here is another card that I made last year. Two birthdays together in one card ;-) or 130 years together...

I found this hilarious "Art Impressions" stamp set that I thought fitted perfectly. I designed my card base in three parts.

I used a strip of 12" x 5 1/2" and scored it at
4 1/4" and 8 1/2" leaving the last panel a bit shorter than the first two. I folded them so the right panel folds to the left and the left panel closes the card to the right.

For the front I used a few parts of the stamped images as a teaser....LOL...I stamped and colored the pieces before I punched them with an 1" circle punch.

I stamped my "Happy Birthday" phrase as seen and added the circles with foam dots to the front...done!

On the inside I added two white panels about 1/4" smaller than the base. I used both for some personal messaging...well on the right side I added a few more of the circles and my writing was about "....we are getting ready...almost there...at our age getting ready takes a little longer..." and on the left side we left a personal message. 

Now the recipients were ready to open the final part of the card to reveal the true inside...I stamped the image on white cardstock and added the "Still got it!" phrase that came with the set. I backed it with some silver mirri cardstock and adhered it to the middle panel of my base.

Here are some more close up pictures of the image and the coloring I did. I love to use my watercolor pencils for this technique. They give me a lot of control of light and dark and shadow areas without a lot of fuzz. Meaning, I used regular white cardstock with a smooth surface like our Close to My Heart "Daisy White" cardstock (Neenah or similar works too). I stamped the image in StazOn black ink, but if you are very careful with water and the lines, you can use Memento or any black archival ink as well.

I used just a few pencil colors and in some pictures you can see how I have one side of the body a bit darker and getting lighter to the other side, indicating where my light comes from. This way you create a more dimensional image instead of a flat one. I left the middle part of the faces uncolored, again to give it dimension. Ones you ad some water to those colors, they blend nicely together. 

Make sure to use almost no water on your brush. This technique requires only a tiny little bit. This is why you get away with using regular black ink and cardstock!!!!
I usually wet my brush and pinch it between my fingers to get most of the water out. If you never worked with pencils like this, try on a piece of scrap paper to see how the colors react and how fare a little water goes. 

Make sure to clean the brush in between switching colors or if you feel you pick up too much color. I will have classes for water coloring techniques available this year. Please contact me for more information. You can also leave me a comment here if you like to learn more about watercolors, certain techniques or if you have a question about it.

Tip: If you practiced your coloring skills on an image and only part of it turned out to your liking's, think about using parts like I did here with the circles!

January 11, 2017

Birthday Card with Penguin

Our nieces birthday is in December and so everything with snow and winter is always a perfect image to use. 

She is, like every little girl a big fan of "Frozen" and so I decided to incorporate a little surprise for her as well:

I found this perfect Penguin topper in my stack, actually I found two. I cut penguin on of them out and adhered it with foam dots to the first one. 

For the background, I used different sizes of snowflakes and two different kind of blue inks. If you have a dark ink, stamp the image ones in the dark, then without re-inking, stamp it a second time on the paper and you get a light impression of your image. This is called "second generation stamping" and gives you more for your money ;-)

I covered my base with snowflakes, added a piece of mirri cardstock with foam dots and adhered the penguin image to the silver mirri cardstock. A few snowflakes and a "happy" cut out with my Cricut and a little "birthday" stamp bring this card together....well a little bit of clear shimmer brush can't hurt either right?

Our surprise is in the inside. When she opened it, a Olaf figure is giggling towards her. LOL I placed Olaf on "Adhesive Springs"(Z1725) so he moves every time you move the card.

January 9, 2017

Welcome to 2017 - Christmas Card

Welcome to a new year of crafting and inspiration. I have no idea where 2016 went, but I sure hope 2017 will be around longer ;-)

This been said, I am preparing right now for our new card making classes and therefore can't show you the projects just yet. So let's do some catch up with cards I haven't show here yet...shall we?

I start with our personal Christmas Card 2016. Every year I make usually two different kind of Christmas cards to sent out to family, friends, customers, neighbors etc. 

As I mentioned, 2016 flew by and I was so short on time that I only got around to make one card design to be exact I had to make 80 for them.

I cut pieces of our Close to My Heart "peacock" cardstock to 4"x 5 1/4" and ran it through a snowflake embossing folder...well the folder through my Big Shot...

Since our paper has a white core, I used a fine grid sand paper and went over the snow flakes lightly to expose the white core. 
Next I stamped my pine trees in "daisy white" pigment ink and let it dry over night. I used the same stamp with "New England Ivy" ink to stamp on top of the white image. You have to make sure to offset the second stamping slightly from the white to get the impression of snow on the trees. I stamped a little down and to the left of the white image. This tree stamp set from CTMH is no longer available, but you might have a similar one in your stack to try.

I punches a star from our red glitter paper and added a banner were I stamped "Merry Christmas" in black ink on it.

I used a white glitter brush to imitated the snow along the bottom of the trees and to give the tree a base to stand on.

I have this wonderful stamp from "Whimsy Stamps" that is perfect for the inside and this card is done.

I wish you all a "Happy and Healthy New Year" and I hope to see you back here often. Many new projects, techniques and some surprises coming your way.

If you life in the Fenton, Mi area and like to attend my card making class or some of the new ones coming up, please feel free to contact me for more details. I will put up a schedule here on the blog with classes and topics in the next few weeks. 
Any questions? Please feel free to email me.

January 2, 2017

Welcome Home - Special of the Month

Welcome to 2017 and a New Year full of crafting inspirations and surprises. Let's see what January has in store for us:

Create a beautiful papercrafted wreath with this simple and adorable kit!

Do you love simple and beautiful papercrafting projects as much as I do? Well, then "The Welcome Home" wreath kit is the perfect start in a new crafting year for you. The kit combines beautiful design with simple assembly, resulting in a papercrafted decor piece you can display with pride. The kit includes die-cut paper pieces and gold foil accents, including enough alphabet stickers to allow you to choose your own message. 

You can buy just the kit for $18.95 or you can get it FREE with a $60 qualifying purchase! So let's start the new year with some fresh ideas and projects and let's get the crafty juices flowing. Hope over to my website to see all the wonderful products Close to My Heart has to offer and get your FREE "Welcome Home" project.

Offer is valid January 1st - January 31st, 2017, while supplies last.