Tuesday, April 30, 2019

the last round-up*

...of the everything circles challenge! as predicted, i didn't get to play every day of april, but i enjoyed the days i did. and even on the "off days" i loved seeing the other posts on instagram, and had fun thinking up what circle-centric concoction i wanted to try next.

day 20
a bit of zen doodle action in black (pitt artist pens), white (sketchbook paper) and pink (tombow dualbrush pens).

day 22
mandala monday, brought to you by the shape "circles" and the colorburst shades indigo, marsala and turquoise!

day 27
collage circles which utilize the negative space of my new favorite sizzix die (cutout blossoms) as well as some leafy stencils and distress inks.

day 29
an uber-bright rainbow mandala monday, consisting entirely of punched circles... which turn out to be very relaxing to manufacture and assemble. just sayin...

hard to believe that april is over already...
hope you had an awesome month!

*geddit?! hahahahahaha! (ok, sorry...) 

Friday, April 26, 2019

a little bit sketchy

...that's what we are at ♥JINGLE BELLES♥ this fortnight, thanks to the sketch-creation skills of miss stephanie, who's made this beautiful roadmap to inspire our cards!

and here's my card:

santa illustration and text paper: october afternoon;sentiment snipped from an echo park journal card; other patterned paper: photo play, american crafts and dcwv; ink: colorbox; adhesives: elmers brand gluetape, 3m foam tape

you can see i've been 100% faithful to the sketch, because obviously it's a GREAT sketch that lends itself to so many different ideas and styles! i used an older october afternoon vintage-inspired santa illustration for my focal point, then filled out with a fussy cut sentiment banner and some red paper scraps. super, suuuuuper easy and yet i love how it turned out!

be sure to hop over to ♥JINGLE BELLES♥ and see stephanie's card and start planning your own!

Wednesday, April 24, 2019

Say YES to the (Origami) Dress!

A couple of weeks ago, a customer in the Eyelet Outlet Booth* mentioned that she had made some really fun origami dresses to fit our Hanger Brads. And when I hear something like that, of course I have to try it out for myself! Turns out, she was 100% correct!

I have done a few simple origami projects in the past, but I'm definitely no expert. Luckily, there is an excellent post with great photos and a step-by-step video on Red Ted's Art Blog. The folds are quite easy and straightforward, and there was only one section (making the skirt dimensional) that I had to watch more than once before I "got it". Here are a few tips I discovered as I went along: you don't necessarily need to use real origami paper, but you do want nice thin copier-weight paper; cardstock will NOT be your friend in this context. To fit the scale of the Hanger Brad I started with a square that was 3.5". And the most important thing I learned is, attach ONLY the bodice of the dress to your card, leaving the skirt section loose... otherwise it looks very flat and slightly odd. (Ask me how I know!)

I made my first dress from thin patterned paper and embellished the bodice with a snippet of clear Fancy Bling, with some pieces of Jewel Bling Strip at the edge of the skirt.

For my second card, I wanted to see if I could make a dress from some of the gorgeous new spring Flower Washi Tape we just got in to the EO Store. I lined strips of tape up neatly on a piece of thin printer paper, trimmed it into a 3.5" square and made a dress in exactly the same way as the first one. It took a little more patience to crease the folds, and I admit that I cheated and tacked the tiny collars and sleeves with a gluedot in the back, so they would stay folded... but otherwise it worked quite well! (But I highly recommend making one or two dresses from plain paper first!)

Once my dress was finished I added a Heart Brad to the bodice (this not only looks adorable, it also makes sure your folds will stay flat... just sayin'...) and attached it just under a Hanger Brad on a fun faux polaroid. I think this is the first time I've scattered one style of brad all over my background to make a sort of pastel Sunglass Brad patterned paper, but it definitely won't be the last!

I hope you'll be inspired to try some simple origami shapes, then pair them with your favorite Eyelet Outlet Brads and Bling! ♥

*Eyelet Outlet visits more than *thirty* US cities each year with Scrapbook Expo, CKC and various rubber stamp shows! Check the tradeshow schedule on the sidebar of the EO Blog or click here for a list of all the locations. Chances are we'll be somewhere near you, sometime soon!

Tuesday, April 23, 2019

everyone loves cupcakes!

ok, maybe not everybody... but that's ok because i love them enough for all of us, which is why i'm wearing yoga pants with a really comfy waistband right now, lol. but this fortnight at shopping our stash we're not asking you to bust your diet, just make the papercrafting project of your choice which features a cupcake. easy, peasy! see?

partial list of supplies, because not only are there waaaaaaaay too many, everything is absolutely ANCIENT, lol, but here are a few... cupcakes: martha stewart; chipboard monograms and covers, plus various tags and papers: the late great basic grey; other papers: sei, graphic 45, ki memories, studio calico, kaiser, teresa collins, october afternoon; washi tape: doodlebug; border and sentiment stickers: crate paper, echo park, doodlebug, fancy pants, mme; ink: colorbox; book rings: staples; adhesives: elmers brand glue tape, 3m foam tape, sookwang scor-tape 

today not only am i *SERIOUSLY* shopping my physical stash of papers and embellies for these two little tag booklets, i went back to an idea that was popular when these classic basic grey papers were new, lol! and i mean years and years ago, before instagram was invented, even before blogging was a big thing, we used to read and/or post projects to crafty bulletin boards, like two peas in a bucket and (in my case) lifetime moments. 

and for a while, minibooks were all the rage. mostly mini-scrapbooks, admittedly. but one year, i when i had loads of tags (both cardstock and chipboard) i decided to make a little book like this for my niece riley's birthday. it didn't have photos, just lots of little stickers and secret messages and things.

it was really FUN to make, and she loved it. so much so, that later in the year i had to make one for her cousin madeline and sister lindsay. so last fortnight, when we were celebrating chipboard, i had sort of a flashback (especially when i found a few leftover basic grey chipboard monograms and their cardstock toppers!) and thought, "i should make one of those again!" so i did. 

or rather, two. because i happen to have an honorary niece an nephew called carlos and isabel, whose birthdays are two years and two weeks apart, and thus we tend to celebrate them together. so it's kind of important to make cards and presents which a distinctly unique... and yet clearly EQUAL.  so i had a blast getting out all my favorite papers and stickers and tags and going embellishment crazy!

but of course all ♥YOU♥ have to do is make a card or project with a cupcake on it, and link up with us at SOS. if you need more inspiration, go see all the fab things the DT made, it's worth the trip i promise! ♥

Saturday, April 20, 2019

even more circles

i'm still plugging away at the everything circles challenge, as time permits. i'm also loving the amazing creations by birgit koopsen and the gang in the instagram hashtag, which are super-inspiring! here's what i made this week:

april 14th
hand-cut circles (from a map and some magazines) stacked, then punched into rings, then snipped on one side so they could be linked together, then glued onto an old gel print with similar colors. 
(for some reason, i really enjoy making strange collaged backgrounds, lol!)

april 15th
mandala monday + colorburst... perfect together! in case you're wondering what order i did everything in: i painted all the colorburst circles and let them dry completely. then i added the circles (using my compass, a couple of rolls of tape, and a bottle cap... i usually like nice neat circles in a mandala) with a few sizes of pit artist pen, in black. then i added some colorful bits with posca paint pens. and finally i outlined a few of those with the smallest (.1mm) pitt pen.

april 17th
behold, i have invented the STICK-doodle!!!!!!! hahahahaha! (ok, sorry) but seriously... i outlined a roll of washi tape to get circles of about the same size; i filled them in pretty haphazardly with tombow dualbrush pens; i added an entire sheet of adorable dog stickers from this month's pipsticks envelope; then added pitt pen and stabilo doodles. 

april 18th
fastest collage ever... vroom vroom! layers of torn, inked, text paper circles sewn onto an old restaurant guest check. and a fab vintage car illustration on top. b/c that's all ya need really... :)

hope you're having a wonderful passover, a very happy easter, 
or just a super-nice weekend!

Friday, April 19, 2019

raid the recycling bag!

that is, in fact, what i did this week to make my "peace on earth day" card for ♥JINGLE BELLES♥ ok, technically, i raided the recycling bag back in december, when this beautiful catalog arrived:

because seriously, who could throw away birch trees with fairy lights? i knew that the center section would be exactly the right size for a tall card and that it wouldn't need much embellishing. and i stand by both of those contentions!

birch tree photo snipped from the cover of viva terra's december catalog; star dies: nestabilities; joy sticker: my mind's eye; poinsettia dies and shaping mold: heartfelt creations; gold metallic cardstock: the paper co; real wood veneer: alte new; adhesives: elmers brand gluetape, 3m foam tape, scor-tape by sookwang, gluedots

all i really needed to do was add a couple of mats (gold metallic and wood veneer seemed like good choices) and then rescue a sheet music star from the big box of diecuts. a couple of dimensional poinsettias and a sentiment sticker later and i called it good!

stephanie also has a fab card to inspire you, why not hop over to ♥JINGLE BELLES♥ and check it out, darlings? 

Wednesday, April 17, 2019

Hippity, Hoppity...

...Happy (almost) Easter Daaaaaaaay! Hi folks, it's the Wednesday before Easter, which seems like a good time to wish you a very happy holiday if you're celebrating. Or just an especially nice weekend if you are not. Either way, why not treat yourself to a chocolate bunny... or at least... some Eyelet Outlet Chocolate Bunny Brads?

I've heard that some people don't actually enjoy chocolate?! So luckily we also have realistic looking Rabbit Brads and super cute Pastel Rabbits as well. Of course all bunnies love Carrots so I've grabbed a few out of the Vegetable Brad set. And Easter wouldn't be the same without beautiful Colored Eggs, but we've also got plain (white and tan) Egg Brads, should you need some. (And there are fried eggs in the Breakfast Brad set, too!)

My second card is an all-occasion greeting, but it's in pretty Spring colors, so I thought I'd post it here too. This one features my favorite Hugs and Kisses Tape plus some Skinny Washi and Pastel Hearts Enamels.

Happy Easter and Happy Spring!!!

Saturday, April 13, 2019

everything circles (update)

i'm still having fun participating in birgit koopsen's "everything circles" challenge on instagram, as time permits. it's never too late for you to join in. you definitely don't have to post every day! for that matter, you don't have to *share* your creations at all, if you prefer not to. but it's a very fun, supportive group on instagram, and you might meet some new friends. i guarantee you will be inspired seeing what others are making! here's my allotment from this past week:

april 6th
i said last week that i could imagine "everything circles" turning into "everything collage" for me. yep. that could totally happen! :)

april 7th
surprise! more collage!!! yes, it's kinda weird... and thus i really like it, lol!

april 8th
what can i say? it was mandala monday, and i was in a colorburst sorta mood! i tried to add more circle and half-circle elements, in honor of the challenge theme.

april 9th
messy, scribbley circles made with a set of stabilo super-fine point pens that i don't use nearly enough. i used ALL the colors... obviously... because why would i NOT?! :) 

after a couple of days that have had more real life commitments than art time, i'm hoping to jump back in this weekend! but truly, it's not an all-or-nothing scenario, and even on the days i don't make anything circle-centric, i'm checking out the posts and noting down the things i'd like to try next!

Friday, April 12, 2019

peace on earth day!

if you've played along with us in other years at ♥JINGLE BELLES♥ you'll know that we have a few "fixture" challenges which are the same theme, at the same time, every year. for instance, the first challenge of october is always pink xmas. and the fortnight which includes earth day is always "re-use, re-cycle, up-cycle". that's just the way it is, lol. so it's time to grab that pretty piece of packaging you saved; or the clear plastic bakery box that could be diecut into shaker card awesomeness; or maybe there's a cereal box in the recycling bin that you could decoupage or paint it to make *free* chipboard embellishments. i personally can never resist saving the beautiful holiday cards we receive each december. sometimes i get really creative and fussy cut different bits and pieces... but this time i pretty much just stuck them together, lol. here are the storebought cards i started with:

and here's what i made:

sparkly tree and green tartan up-cycled greeting cards; sentiment sticker: doodlebug (it's ANCIENT, lol!); wisteria textured cardstock: paper adventures (again... we're going back a bit...); indigo cardstock: bazzill; snowflake brads: eyelet outlet; ink for edges: ranger archival;   

see? i told you, the cards did almost all the work for me!!! and in fact, i only wound up using two of the three cards. because when i trimmed down the sparkly tree scene to fit the plaid frame, it turned out that the cool dove covered up waaaaaaaay too much of the design. i tried adding diecuts... a larger sentiment... and... well, let's just say i tried adding a LOT of different options, and none of them really worked. eventually, i stumbled across this ancient sentiment sticker, which featured exactly the same shade of purple as the sky behind the trees. so i just added a few skinny wisteria cardstock mats, some fun eyelet outlet snowflake brads and called it a day!

stephanie has a fab card to show you, and i'll bet you won't guess what her recycled element is until she tells you! hop on over to ♥JINGLE BELLES♥ and check it out, darlings!

Wednesday, April 10, 2019

Narwhals, Narwhals (Plus Brads and Washi Tape!)

I don't know about you, but I look forward to Spring more and more every year. I love the warmer weather, watching my lawn turn green and my daffodils bloom and... I know there will be new Brads and Washi Tape in the Eyelet Outlet Store! There are about three dozen new varieties of tape, and frankly I love them all. But when I saw the Cloud Washi and Water Tape, I immediately wanted to "make a scene"! But literally. In card form. Like this:

Of course, it didn't hurt that I had a brand new, adorable narwhal stamp that I was dying to use. But this idea is a bit more flexible than it seems at first. Because you could swap the narwhal for a whale, a dolphin, a mermaid... basically ANY cute sea creature would work! I got a bit artsy with my sky, using intermittent strips of the Cloud Washi, which I tore to fit around lyrics from The Narwhal Song, which I happen to love. But you could skip the typing and just make a nice neat cloudy sky above a Water Tape ocean. Once I had my background finished, it was time to have some fun with brads! I added Sun and Clouds towards the top, a pair of cute Fish Brads and a pink Heart Brad. My card is a 5.5" square, but this would also work as an A2. You'll notice that at every stage of this design I've said, "...but you could do *this* instead..." which I felt was starting to sound a bit lame. So eventually I figured I'd better actually make a card using all of the "insteads". Here it is now:

A nice neat Cloud Washi and Water Tape seascape, diecut into a heart to hold my Narwhal, plus those fab Sun and Cloud Brads again. And since I keep my Sunglass Brads right next to the Sun and Clouds, I noticed that they were a pretty good size for the narwhal to wear, so I added a pair from the Colorful set. Instead of patterned paper for a background I used an older Blue and White Dot Tape in the same color family. I even added a slightly more mainstream sentiment!

I hope you'll check out all the fun new Washi Tape in the EO store (the newest styles are all conveniently located at the top of the decorative tape section, with an asterisk before their names) and maybe even "make a scene" of your own! ♥

Tuesday, April 9, 2019

SOS393: chipboard

this fortnight's challenge at shopping our stash is to make a project which incorporates chipboard. because i knooooooooooooow you still have some! i had quite a selection from which to choose: chipboard shapes, chipboard alphas, chipboard mini albums, fancy chipboard, glittery chipboard... yep, i definitely liked that stuff. still do, for that matter! here's my card which incorporates a plain label shape, as well as an embossed butterfly and heart. i left them naked, but used a white paint pen along the edges to make them stand out a bit more.

i know the label shape was from k and co and is quite old. the butterfly and heart...? i have no idea. they were in a box with a bunch of maya road stuff, but the color seems wrong. i'm quite sure they are not by prima, which makes them about the only things on this card that are not by prima, lol. there's quite an age range too: the orange paper i've framed with the kraft chipboard label is from the "flights of fancy" collection and the diecut leaves are from "angelique". the fern leaf made from pearls is pretty old and a bit hoarded. the florals are from three or four different collections. and the two white mats --which i've distressed with great enthusiasm-- are from "pretty pale" which is quite new. i love the way everything works together so nicely, without looking too matchy... if you know what i mean?

here's a closeup of the embellies because i spent quiiiiiiite some time attaching those babies!!!

i hope you'll hop over to SOS and see what my DT sisters have made to inspire you and then start planning your own chipboard-centric masterpiece! ♥

Saturday, April 6, 2019

everything circles!

the very awesome birgit koopsen is hosting a fun challenge on instagram this month, it's called "everything circles" and the brief ...you've guessed already, right? ...is to incorporate circles into any kind of project, using any kind of media, each night. you'll have possibly noticed that i love having some sort of theme or challenge or prompt list simmering away in the background. that's because at 10:30 pm, i generally still have enough energy to work on something, but i hardly ever have enough to think up what that ought to be. so having a plan or theme already in place shortcuts me right to working on an actual sketchbook page, when-and-if some freestyle art time materializes. here's what i've made so far:

april 1st 
...happened to fall on mandala monday, so this was a no-brainer, lol. super-vivid colorbursts, pitt artist pens and a few posca paint pens.

april 2nd
when we drive to maryland and back to see jeff's dad, i have just over two hours each way as a passenger in the car. and no, i can never just sit. (if you want to torture a hyperactive person, try to make them sit still and do nothing!!!) so i take my laptop and fiddle away with digital brushes and things. usually i make a new header for my blog, but this seemed like a good time to make something circle centric. at one point this composition had A LOT more circles, but i liked it less. the nice thing about digital design is, you can go back three steps! digital brushes by katie pertiet at designer digitals; digital paper by somerset studio.

april 3rd
one of my favorite things about sporadically minding the store at paper anthology is, unlike other jobs in retail, when it isn't busy, not only are you allowed to get out the colorbursts and fill a page with watercolor circles... such behavior is actively encouraged! for this i used only peony, gamboge and cerulean colorburst to see how many different shades i could make from a limited palette. (the answer turned out to be, "LOTS"!)

april 4th
i think for me personally, this challenge could easily morph into all collage. because i have a lot of collage ideas. (A LOT!) this is the first one, a collage of interesting circles.

april 5th
another digital composition in which the end result actually has less circles than i expected. but i'm cool with being "inspired by" the circles and letting things kind of emerge organically. paper and steampunk diagram brushes by girlfriday from digichick, music brushes by anna aspnes, grungy doily brushes and mixed media butterfly by katie pertiet, designer digitals 

stay tuned, lol...
meanwhile, happy weekend, i hope you have fun and 
that you get to do something creative!

Friday, April 5, 2019

it's a TREE-O... geddit?! :)

because we're still celebrating "we THREE kings" at ♥JINGLE BELLES♥... for which, if you recall, we want to see three of something rather than kings. so i chose a trio of trees. obviously!

patterned paper: hot off the press (THAT is goin' back a bit, eh?!), carta bella, basic grey, prima, creative imaginations plus best creation white glitter paper and an ancient basic grey tag; tree die and snowflake stickers: echo park; deer die: impression obsession; chipboard sentiment: my mind's eye; ink: colorbox; adhesives: elmers brand gluetape, 3m foam tape, scor-tape by sookwang, sewing machine 

last year, during a tidy-up of craft storage, i decided to diecut a lot of my smaller xmas paper scraps, so i'd always have a nice supply of pine trees, reindeer, snowflakes, etc. i have found this to be a very useful system, which lets me get right to the "design composition" phase without having to retrieve the diecutter, plates and papers first! it's pretty self-sustaining, too, since whenever i do have any xmas dies out, i grab whatever scraps are sitting around (b/c i ALWAYS have scraps sitting around, lol!) and make a few extras for the collection. i keep it in one of those sets of drawers for hardware-sorting that they sell at home depot. tho technically, i "liberated" this one from my husband's workshop. (in my defense: it was sitting EMPTY for several years... if he ever notices it's gone, i'll give it back, k?!)

stephanie has another awesome trio-centric card to inspire you... why not hop over to 
♥JINGLE BELLES♥ and see that right now, darlings?

Wednesday, April 3, 2019

Paris is Always a Good Idea... or Two!

The only "problem" with Eyelet Outlet Eiffel Tower Brads is that each pack comes with six bright silver Eiffel Towers and six anodized copper ones. And since I can never decide which to use, I nearly always wind up making two cards. Like these:

This time I used one of the copper brown Eiffel Tower Brads first, because I knew how beautifully it would pair with the Vertical Eiffel Tower Tape I've used in the background. I couldn't resist adding a strip of this pretty new Gold Foil XO Tape, as well as a couple of Anodized Stars and a Compass Brad.

Obviously, I couldn't leave out the pretty silver Eiffel Tower Brads, so my second card features one of those on top of a trimmed down journal card that reads, "Paris is Always a Good Idea". I added a few strips of pretty pink foil Rose Washi Tape on the pink notebook paper panel, and a couple of Heart Brads to finish off my design.

Of course, both of these ideas would also work really well in a travel journal, or to scrapbook a trip to Paris; but until I have occasion for either of those, I'll just keep making cards! ♥