Wednesday, July 17, 2019

Waving Hello

My sister just returned from a week at the Jersey Shore, and thanks to the wonders of technology and social media, I was able to follow along while she and her family had fun at the beach, thus I was properly jealous! Alas, I don't have a seaside trip scheduled any time soon, but luckily I do have Eyelet Outlet Shell Brads and Pearl Swirls, so I was able to make my own little ocean scene, in card form!

I get cardmaking inspiration from all sorts of places, but it's not very often that a whole entire idea pops into my head fully formed. This was one of those times, though, so I was very excited to get to work. My thought was to make "waves" of torn paper that would overlap a neutral colored beach on which lots of Eyelet Outlet Sea Shore Brads, Shells and Shell Corners had washed up. As I was getting out my supplies, I spotted some white Pearl Swirl Bling and it sort of reminded me of the way seafoam makes little designs on the sand. So I tucked some snippets in and around my shells, starfish and sand dollars.

Here's a little behind-the-scenes process that typically doesn't make it into my post, but I've talked about "dry fitting" the elements of a card fairly often, and this pic really shows what I mean. Before I've poked a single hole to set a brad, before I've even touched the adhesive, I lay out every element I'm going to use, in the place I think it should go. And then... (this is vital!) ...I snap a photo with my phone, so I remember where it all went. As you can see, I've trimmed all the papers (which are from various Prima Marketing collections, including Georgia Blues, Misty Rose and Havana) roughly to size for my 6" square card. I've torn the "waves" so they overlap nicely. I've snipped my letters from their backing sheets and arranged them --for size rather than correct spelling lol. Now I am ready to assemble the layers for real!

You can see that I did make one or two changes during the assembly process. As I was sticking down the letters I realized that "comes in waves" would fit on one line, rather than two, and I liked it better that way. When I decided to add machine stitching to the layers of waves, I knew the sewing process would be much easier if all the pearls were on the beach. I also decided that a little more sparkle was in order, so I made a mat by adding strips of Glitter Gold Tape to the edges of plain white cardstock cut just 1/4" larger than the central panel.

Whether you are headed to the beach, the farm or the zoo this summer, Eyelet Outlet has brads and tape that will work for ANY destination! ♥

Tuesday, July 16, 2019

'tis (technically) NOT the season!

on the other hand, "christmas in july" has become a bit of A Thing in the wonderful world of online papercrafting, so that's what we have for you this fortnight, which also happens to be our 400th challenge at shopping our stash. if you make a christmas (or hanukkah!) card and link up with us this week, that's one less you'll have to make in december, and you'll be pleased about that when the holidays roll around, trust me! there may also be a present or two involved in this shindig, but more about that in a minute. first, here's my card:

patterned paper: basic grey; chipboard: echo park; burlap flower: petaloo; velvetty flower: we r memory keepers; velvet holly leaves: 7 gypsies; round brads and poinsettia brad: eyelet outlet; ink for edging: ranger distress; adhesives: elmers brand gluetape, 3m foam tape, gluedots

i used last week's sketch saturday, even though i knew it would not be live by the time i posted this. still, it was a great sketch and a huge help getting me started! i've got nothing but elderly stash here: ancient and well-beloved basic grey papers, chipboard from (i think) the very first echo park holiday collection (or at least... the first one i ever saw, lol), older flowers with loads of texture and even some totally old skool round brads!

in the spirit of SOS and also of the holiday season, i have some super-fun blog candy to give away to one random commenter on this post. some of these goodies are old-but-unopened; a few are gently used, but all have plenty of mileage left in them! to enter the giveaway please leave a comment telling me one of your favorite holiday cardmaking "go to's"; whether it's a specific brand or product, a favorite style of image, a never-fail color palette, or even the perfect playlist! comment as many times as you like, i'll announce a winner on the last day of this challenge, which is monday, july 30th!

be sure to head over to sos to help us celebrate challenge #400 and check out the rest of the design team's blogs this week. i cannot guarantee they will all have blog candy, but they will DEFINITELY all have inspiration! ♥

Saturday, July 13, 2019

now even ICADier!

i'm still plugging away at an index card a day. is it just my imagination, or does summer fly by a little bit faster each year?

day thirty six: thesaurus
as you may have guessed from the rainbow assortment of michelle ward's exclusive ink pad stencils, this was a day of gel printing! and the base paper of lady liberty actual is a page from a thesaurus, so i did start out with the prompt in my head; but clearly the collage took a much more new-york-y turn midway through, and i was fine with that.
(and NO, once they are dry, as long as the crud that is on my stencils is stable and won't contaminate the next project, i never clean my stencils! julie balzer doesn't either and says life is too short SO THERE!!!)

day thirty seven: botanical
a very simple collage. that i actually really like.

day thirty eight: mandala monday
i've done lots of mandala icads and plenty of tiny car icads, but (somewhat incredibly... how is this possible...?!) i had never done a tiny car mandala icad. until now. 
(vroom! vroom!)

day thirty nine: color chart
this idea is 100% a lift of something i saw on gill corrigan's instagram account, rowans cottage. except hers was painted ON A WALL in her house!!! i'm not as brave as that. on the other hand, you can't add machine stitching to a wall...

day forty: blueprint
i started with a much more sensible idea, honestly! and somehow it became appliqued and stitched lattice on a gridded card with every shade of blue stripes inside the raised areas. yeah... i have no idea, either...

day forty one: off prompt
a random collage of wavy papers, stitching and a tiny car. 
(vroom vroom!)

day forty two: card catalog
circling back to the  prompt i skipped yesterday. layered ex-library catalog cards, adorned with narwhals and mermaids from this month's pipsticks pack; and a blendy ocean-ish colorburst mat in between.  

hope this weekend will find you with a little extra time to have some artsy FUN!

Friday, July 12, 2019

still TIC-ing

or rather, we are still TIC-TAC-TOE-ing our way to fabulous holiday cards at ♥JINGLE BELLES♥ and you still have plenty of time to join the fun. just choose any row, column or diagonal from this fun board and incorporate all three items into your card!

this week i chose the top row, so i had SNOWMAN + GLITTER + STAMPING to work with. i stamped my pretty pink posh happy snowman (for a bit of a two-fer!); then grounded him on some fun glitter-bedecked paper from pebbles. as a bonus, i gave my handsome snowman an eyelet outlet hat brad and added some snowflake brads to the glittery snowflakes printed on the patterned paper.

stephanie also has a beautiful card to inspire you. why not hop over to ♥JINGLE BELLES♥ and see that right now, darlings!

Wednesday, July 10, 2019

Book 'Em!

I recently enjoyed "The Library Book" by Susan Orlean and it inspired me to get out my Eyelet Outlet Book Brads --and Book Tape-- to make some fun cards!

I love that the packets of Book Brads contain both colorful books and more neutral ones.I used five of the colorful ones for my first card, and went vertical with them... to make a whole entire shelf of books. I attached my computer generated sentiment (the free font is called "Bohemian Typewriter") to a fun yellow reproduction library catalog card, added some red Heart Enamels and placed the whole thing on a background of texty patterned paper adorned with Heart Washi, Star Tape and some Skinny Washi strips.

The sentiment on my second card is one I saw on a t-shirt in a book lover's catalog some months ago, and wrote down in my ideas notebook. I printed it on a clear ink jet label in a free font called "Beach Condensed" and affixed it to another faux library card. This time I used our beautiful Book Tape as an accent on both the sentiment card and the background, added just one stack of neutral Book Brads and a single Heart Enamel.

It just goes to show that time spent reading OR crafting is NEVER wasted! ♥

Sunday, July 7, 2019

index cards (and a BEAR!) as far as the eye can see!

because, yes, another week of ICAD is over, we are past the halfway point of the 61 day challenge! and YES, i really did see an actual adult black bear, out and about this week; more on that in a minute. 

day twenty nine: terracotta
i used some beautiful pieces of semi-see-through terracotta fabric paper to make a collage, to which i then added a grid of machine stitching... that card is below this one. because, in the end, i liked the reverse of the card, with stitched squares, more than the collage itself. so i flipped it over and added some marker stripes.

day thirty: lemon or lemonade
this is the simplest idea in the world. i painted some lemon yellow colorburst circles on a nice sturdy tabbed index card. and surrounded them with rings of gamboge. when the card was thoroughly dry i added all the white pithy bits of the lemon with machine stitching. and then i put some pen doodles in the spaces between to make the lemons stand out a little more. 

day thirty one: mandala monday
more colorburst, on a different tabbed card. and yes, it was monday, so it's a mandala!

day thirty two: mis-matched
this was an ordinary index card on which i painted my leftover rainbow shades of colorburst from the mandala above. when it was dry i added some pen doodles and then i cut it up and re-arranged the pieces somewhat randomly. as it turned out, they don't actually look very mis-matched. but i still like the card.

day thirty three: off prompt
...because yes... I SAW A BEAR!!! just before 10am, in roxbury township, new jersey, on my way to work at paper anthology. i had been aware that bears are occasionally seen in the area. or more accurately, that the evidence of bears is occasionally seen in the area. thus, for example, we are very careful with our food trash, etc. but i was still extremely shocked and quite amazingly awed to see a very large, healthy looking, adult bear, just moseying happily along towards a residential neighborhood. which, oddly enough, happened to be called "deer view"; though i'm sure the bear couldn't have known that and been hoping for venison!   ...well... pretty sure, lol.

day thirty four: off prompt
here's my card from the 4th of july which was a very busy day with a cookout, fireworks and of course some DOODLING! ♥

day thirty five: ogee
yes... i still love cutting out shapes and piecing or stacking them together as patterns. and ogee is one of my favorites! (fair warning: i had some leftovers, you will likely be seeing this idea again lol!)

Friday, July 5, 2019

hooray for the red, white and... green?!

yepper! because even though it's the day after fourth of july, it's still friday and thus time for a brand new theme at ♥JINGLE BELLES♥! we've got a fun tic-tac-toe game this fortnight, for which you can choose any row, column or diagonal and use those three items in your card.

i chose the diagonal which runs from the top right corner to the bottom left. thus i needed to incorporate STAMPING + RED or GREEN (i chose both!) + RIBBON. and here's my card:

block party xmas stamp: uniko; colored with: tombow dualbrush pens; brads and gems: eyelet outlet; tartan ribbon from my stash; patterned paper: echo park, american crafts; glossy white cardstock: the paper cut; adhesives: elmers brand gluetape, 3m foam tape, scor-tape by sookwang 

being a very very lucky so-and-so, i was given this BEEEAUTIFUL uniko "block party xmas" stamp for my birthday by a certain someone, and i couldn't wait to ink it up! (a phrase i would never, ever, be uttering if i didn't have a MISTI, which was given to me last year by the same certain someone!) since the stamp is 4 x 5.25" you really don't need a lot more to make a beautiful card. i did add quite a few eyelet outlet holiday brads, because the stamp actually included things like the triangle shaped tree, various sizes of snowflakes, an ornament, holly leaves, etc, which i chose to adorn with brads to add color. i stuck to a traditional palette as inspired by the "red or green" box of the game board and only needed to add a few mats and a ribbon accent to complete my tic-tac-toe choice.

stephanie also has an awesome card to show you, so why not hop over to ♥JINGLE BELLES♥ right now and be inspired?! ♥

Thursday, July 4, 2019

July and August Classes

It's time for another new "semester" of classes at Paper Anthology in Kenvil, New Jersey. There are lots of excellent ones this time, so be sure to check out the Class Page on the website. Meanwhile, here's what I'll be teaching:

Hand Lettering: Fake It Til You Make It

When it comes to beautiful brush lettering there is (alas) no substitute for practice, practice, PRACTICE. But… I know one or two excellent “cheats” that will instantly make your own lettering (or even your stamps and diecuts!) look more polished. Part of it just comes down to having the right tools for the job and knowing how to use them; factors which we will explore while making two beginner-friendly 5×7 panels that students can make into cards, journal pages or decor after class. All supplies and pens to practice with will be provided, however students who own brush pens are welcome to bring their favorite colors to class!

Christmas in July and August: Let it Snow!

What’s more refreshing than the thought of cold crisp snow in the middle of a hot New Jersey summer? We’ll make three bold holiday cards featuring a variety of tiny dies with BIG style, including Tim Holtz’s “Mini Snowglobes” and Sizzix Sidekick “Winter” sets. Please note that some of the components really are small, so students will definitely want to bring their tweezers, fine-tipped adhesive and reading glasses!

If you're within driving distance of Morris County, NJ (take route 80 to State Highway 46 *or* consult this map!) we'd love to see you. All the details are on the Class Page of the Paper Anthology website! ♥

Wednesday, July 3, 2019

Did She Say, "Steampunk Goggles"?!

Yes. Yes, I did say STEAMPUNK GOGGLES! Because that's what's on the card I made for today, a pair of fanciful goggles surrounded by lots of Eyelet Outlet Gear Brads and Pearl Swirls and... well, lots of other good stuff I'll tell you about in a minute.

The goggles themselves were actually really easy to make. They're just layers of diecut circles, stacked together. The largest (dark brown) is about 2 5/8", the silver layer is 2 3/8", the copper colored layer is 2" and the die that cut the hole through all of them so we could see Victorian London (via magazine photo, lol) is just over an inch. I think the thing that really "sells" the feeling of steampunk and fantasy is that after I assembled all the layers, I set twelve (12!) tiny 1/16" Mini Round Gold Brads around each lens, to act as the rivets holding the goggles together. I also used a Pipe Brad for the nosepiece and a couple of tiny scraps of copper colored paper at either end to suggest straps.

The steampunk goggles I have seen photos of (because apparently YES, this is really A Thing!) all have gears and attachments and things, which I decided to add to the background, instead of the goggles themselves. I stenciled a few gears over some text paper. Then I got to work adding Gear Brads, Screw Brads, Valves from the Pipe Brad set, a Compass Brad, and even a couple of film canisters from the Movie Brads set, because they looked like a different type of cog or wheel to me! Then I added bits of a Pearl Swirl to suggest movement, and filled in with some 8mm Stippled Jewel Brads and loose Pearls.

For the sentiment, I used letter stickers in brown cardstock (dream) and silver metallic chipboard. I swapped out the "I" in "big" for a Pipe Brad and a Gear Brad embellished with a Tiny Round Brad from the Brown Mix.

I hope you'll be inspired to dream up your own fanciful creations, because there really is an Eyelet Outlet Brad for EVERYTHING! ♥

Tuesday, July 2, 2019

the dreaded...

...ONE LAYER CARD is the assignment this fortnight at shopping our stash. definitely definitely not my strongest suit, but i did my best.

i stamped the ink road bella flora flowers first with archival ink. they seemed like a good "stashy" choice as stephanie gave me this set last xmas and despite drooling over them on a regular basis, i still hadn't actually used them, lol. then i used a homemade circle stencil (just a large nestie die cut out of the center of a piece of glossy cardstock) to mask off around the flowers, and i stenciled the smalled segment of michelle ward's hash pattern stencil (exclusive to the ink pad) with soft grey ink. i filled in around the "paving stones" --i was thinking garden courtyard here-- and traced around the inside of the circle with a fine point pen. finally i colored in the flowers with some tombow dualbrush pens and a waterbrush for a softer look. et voila! 

there's lots more versions of one-layer goodness from the rest of the SOS team. why not hop over and enjoy those right now, darlings? ♥

Saturday, June 29, 2019

cavalcade of ICADs

because there's nothing more refreshing on a hot summer's day than art on an index card, am i right? ok, cool drinks are also nice... but this post just has index cards:

day twenty two: bicycle
it's a very very (VERY!) abstract version of a bicycle wheels. with spokes, etc. wellllllllllllll... sorta.

day 23: off-prompt
at julie balzer's gel print class!
i knew this day, with julie's amazing 6 hour class at the ink pad, would be as long and tiring as it was fun, and i was right! so luckily the night before i had used some ancient vinyl alphabet stickers to mask a couple of index cards and i printed on them during class. this was my fave.

day twenty four: off-prompt
mandala monday
handcut mandala layers made from paint-testing gel prints. nothing fancy. because it was assembled at 10pm in my hotel room! ;)

day twenty five: rose
this is one of my favorite cards from the whole of ICAD so far. firmly within my comfort zone of vintage paper collage, but none the worse for that, imo.

day twenty six: off-prompt 
rainbow ribbon doodles
this card was made at the end of the night on which i finished my samples for a hand-lettering class i will be teaching next month at paper anthology. when you see the cards from the class, you will see EXACTLY how i got here, lol!

day twenty seven: inspired by maud vantours
i haven't made anything inspired by MV in a bit, but as soon as i made this card with folded, layered triangles i was immediately re-smitten. this arrangement also reminds me of the crocodile stitch in crochet!

day twenty eight: inspired by clover robin 
one of my favorite things about ICAD is the opportunity to "try on" different artists' styles and see what they feel like. i have just recently discovered clover robin on instagram. she is an illustrator who draws and paints with handcut collaged papers. it's kind of hard to explain, so just GO SEE! btw, it's harder than you think to just freehand cut out even quite familiar shapes without drawing guidelines. just sayin'... :)

it's not too late to join the index card a day project! don't worry about catching up, just start on july 1st and do the month! or start today and do one week. honestly, the numbers are the least important part of it!!! think of something you've always wanted to try; then figure out how to put it on an index card.
ready... set... GO!

Friday, June 28, 2019

Snow Far, Snow Good!

We're still celebrating the flaky white stuff this fortnight at Jingle Belles. Frankly, the one place I really quite like to see *SNOW* is on holiday cards, where it never impedes driving or requires me to wield a shovel for hours at a time lol. So let's get right to my card:

patterned paper: echo park, authentique; white glitter cardstock: best creation; snowflake brads, snowflake tape and pearl swirls: eyelet outlet; circle punch: ek success; tag die: sunny studio; trees and hills die: penny black; sentiment die: elizabethcraft design; the perfect shade of cobalt blue cardstock: gina k; ink for edges: colorbox; adhesives: elmers brand gluetape, 3m foam tape, scor-tape

In the spirit of full disclosure, I confess that the center panel of this card began life as a sample for a "Christmas in July" class I will be teaching next month at Paper Anthology. But as it turns out, I decided to use the Penny Black Trees and Hills die in a different way, on a different card, so the base with trees peeping through the round windows became surplus to requirements. But "waste not, want not" is my motto! So I added an additional mat to make the card an A7, popped on some fab Eyelet Outlet Snowflake Brads and placed a diecut sentiment on a banner made with pretty grey and white Snowflake Washi Tape... et voila!

Hop on over to Jingle Belles and see Stephanie's snow-centric masterpiece, then start planning one of your own! ♥

Wednesday, June 26, 2019

Christmas in July (...technically, a week early...)

But these days there are TONS of awesome events and challenges surrounding the making of holiday cards all throughout July, and what better way to prepare than by stocking up on all your favorite Eyelet Outlet Holiday Brads, Washi Tape and Bling?!

Since my craft bestie Stephanie and I have a fortnightly Christmas card blog called ♥JINGLE BELLES♥, I am no stranger to making Xmas cards through the year. In fact, the only month I absolutely do not want to make holiday cards is... December! But any other time that inspiration strikes me, I will happily sit down and make a couple of cards. In this case my first card was built around these sweeeeeeet Peppermint Candy Brads. In January I had picked up a super-cute gingerbread house stamp set in the post-holiday sales, and when I came across it again the other day and realized I *still* hadn't used it, I got right to work. I stamped the house in white, (thanks to Hero Arts' amazing Unicorn Ink!) added some gel pen details and a few sticky-back Pearl accents. I flanked the house with a Holiday Tree Brad and a Candy Cane, then built a little hilly little landscape, in which it is snowing candy! :)

My second card features these lovely Ornament Brads, which I'm embarrassed to say I don't use nearly enough. Or at least, I haven't until now. But seeing as all I needed to make this card was five Ornaments, portions of one Pearl Bling Strip and a stamped sentiment... I think this is an idea I will be revisiting over and over!

It's never too early to get a jump on the holidays, so I hope you'll be inspired to check out all the fun stuff in the EO Store. And of course we'd love to see you at ♥JINGLE BELLES♥ as well! ♥

Saturday, June 22, 2019

a round up that moves around

which seems appropriate for the index card a day project, in which all things experimental... and indeed "mental" for that matter, lol... are fair game. also, getting a whole week's worth of cards into a post first thing monday morning was a bit tiring, lol. so let's see if saturday is a bit more relaxed. ♥

day eighteen: off prompt
sticking with my fallback position of, "when all else fails... zen doodle!" i had fun with the supplies that were already on my table this particular night: a fabulous hexagon stencil that michelle ward designed exclusively for the ink pad and some ranger inks. plus my trusty faber-castell pitt artist pen, the one with the XS (.1mm) nib which i reach for over and over and over...

day nineteen: yellow
a collage of random yellow things, mostly snipped out of old childrens' dictionaries. quite spare for me, but once i had that canary on there, singing to an empty room, i felt like it was DONE.

day twenty: off prompt
something which has been a fallback position for me during every ICAD ever, is random collage. it's my comfort zone. and again, if you're going to start your ICAD at 11pm, it is a good idea to use whatever happens to be on your table at that time. in this case that happened to be: scraps of vintage paper, a couple of butterflies diecut from an old subway map, a pre-painted colorburst rainbow on a gridded card and a wendy vecchi leaf stencil. ta-da. :)

day twenty one: guitar
a less random collage. because i was thinking about the prompt during the day, and i knew i had a loteria card with a guitar. i also grabbed the definition of guitar from a childrens' dictionary and a vintage south american passport stamp. the sheet music and ancient rub-on transfers just happened to be there and then worked. woohoo.

happy saturday!!!
,it is sunny here for the first time in about a week and 
i'm planning to take full advantage of that fact!