Sunday, May 31, 2020

The Same, But Different

Isn't it amazing what a difference a color palette makes? Case in point, the three cards below use the exact same combination of Tim Holtz products; the only variations are the choice of colors I blended to make each unique background panel. I used Stampers Anonymous "Field Notes" Cling Stamp SetIdea-Ology "Remnant" Rubs and sentiments from the Idea-Ology Clippings Sticker Book. I was inspired to make a bunch of different backgrounds using the brand new Distress Oxide Ink color, Speckled Egg, and the results are on The Ink Pad Blog today! ♥

Friday, May 29, 2020

Bring on the Bling

We're still celebrating all things glittery, sparkly and gem-encrusted at Jingle Belles and you're still invited to join the fun! Here's what I made this week:

transparency from the late great hambly screen prints; ancient ki memories patterned paper; bling frame so old i have no idea who made it; slowers, snowflake brad and pink glitter tape: eyelet outlet; adhesives: elmers brand gluetape, 3m foam tape

I had an entirely different idea when I sat down, but then I found this ancient bling frame and I changed course so I could use it. My card base is a well-hoarded Hambly Transparency (thank you Stephanie for grabbing them up whenever you come across them!) the sparkly pink tape, flowers and Snowflake Brad are from Eyelet Outlet.

Head on over to Jingle Belles to see Stephanie's beautiful card and the sweet little (bling-centric!) prize that one lucky random cardmaker will win this fortnight.

Thursday, May 28, 2020

Rainbow Tag

I never seem to get tired of using Michelle Ward's exclusive line of stencils and stamps for The Ink Pad. Somehow new combinations of images, formats and color palettes keep popping into my head, a bit like an artistic game of Clue, lol. For example, how about: NYC Tourist Stencil with the Skyline Stamp Set, in pastel rainbow shades, on a giant tag?! :) Hop over to The Ink Pad Blog to read all about it!

Wednesday, May 27, 2020

Seriously. Very Seriously.

This is not the first time I've made cards based on a t-shirt slogan, and it probably won't be the last. It is, at the moment, my favorite, though. Because the combination of a funny sentiment and Eyelet Outlet Coffee Brads is kinda hard to beat.

Before I go too far, I should mention that the Spring/Summer 2020 Coffee Lovers Hop is taking place right now and you have until Friday night to join the fun. There are literally HUNDREDS of inspiring cards linked up already, and dozens of very cool prizes for lucky random coffee cardmakers to win. A slight change is that the seasonal thematic requirement has been suspended; so this time you don't need to make a summery card, just a coffee (or tea, or cocoa, or boba or matcha) card! If you visit the Coffee Lovers on FaceBook, be sure to say hi to my amazing friend Amy Tsuruta, who not only does a huge amount of the admin on these occasions, she (and quite a few of the other organizers) also comments on every single card. No kidding. EVERY card!!! She is my idol! 

On to my cards. Technically, I've really only designed ONE card, but I've made two versions. This is one of my strategies for avoiding decision paralysis, and I highly recommend it. Instead of trying to decide whether to choose one washi tape background over another, or how to arrange the Coffee Brads, I just work on both options, simultaneously. I realize it seems like that would take longer, but generally, it speeds up my process! For the first card, I neatly lined up strips of this fun new Cat Face Tape on plain white cardstock, printed my sentiment on a subtly patterned paper, and added one white cup from the Coffee Brads set in a little circle icon, plus three beans from the same set underneath.

For the second card, I used Eye Washi for the background (a tape which embodies the phrase, "death before decaf" imo!!!) and alternated white cups and beans from Coffee Brads up top, with a pattern of green Enamel Dots below.

Just in case anyone else is as silly as I am, I made the sentiment into a jpg that you can download here, or find on the Freebies Page of the Eyelet Outlet Blog.

For some reason I'm longing for another cup of coffee, so I bid you farewell for now!

Tuesday, May 26, 2020

Stuck on You

Have you already guessed what the theme is this fortnight at Shopping Our Stash? If you think that we're having fun with STICKERS, you're absolutely right! Here's what I made:

stickers: echo park; patterned papers: basic grey, my mind's eye, doodlebug, amy tangerine; sticky gems: eyelet outlet; labelmaker: dymo; white and black glossy cardstock: the paper cut; grass border punch: martha stewart; adhesives: elmers brand gluetape, 3m foam tape

Everyone knows that I looooove stickers: big ones, small ones, pretty ones, kawaii cute, images, alphabets, borders, stick-on bling... you name a sticker category and I bet that I have a few! But for SOS of course I had to bust out some of my older ones; and I chose some leftover 12x12 sheets from several different Echo Park collections that would be good for making birthday cards. 

On my first card, the stickers are the car and the sunshine... and I suppose the Dymo Label sentiment is a sticker of sorts? On my second card, the tree, the sun, the flowers, the bird, the sentiment and the layers of border stickers at the bottom are all stickers... and the Eyelet Outlet Flower Jewels! Both cards are 6" squares and if they have a similar-but-different vibe it's because they are for an honorary niece and nephew whose birthdays are two years and two weeks apart, so I always wind up mailing them together. Oh and before you ask, YES, I do buy every single patterned paper that has clouds on it, as a matter of fact!!! :)

Hop over to SOS to see the glorious design team creations and start planning your sticker-centric creation! ♥

Sunday, May 24, 2020

What in the World is "ICAD"?!

ICAD stands for Index Card a Day and it's a fantastic yearly event to help us creative types establish, re-establish, or re-ignite a daily art practice. As you know, we're all about finding new ways to create at The Ink Pad, especially in these tumultuous times.

So what does one actually DO with an Index Card a Day? Literally anything creative, once a day, from June 1st to July 31st! You can try out all your stamps and stencils, test your paints and inks, draw, collage, hand-letter, write haiku or short stories... or do a little bit of everything. The event was devised by Tammy Garcia of the Daisy Yellow Art Blog, and you literally do not need anything besides a favorite pen and some index cards in order to participate, but part of my tradition is that I've made myself a little ring-bound book in which to keep my cards each year. I like to do that before the challenge gets started, because it spurs me on to keep going and complete an index card each day to fill up the book! Also... frankly... I just happen to love making tiny books.

This one has covers which are 4x6" made from the cardboard backer of a writing tablet. I covered it with a collage of book paper and used my Picket Fence Studio Blender Brushes to apply Distress Oxide Ink in Spun Sugar and Picked Raspberry, through StencilGirl's Marakech Mix Stencil. I outlined the moorish tiles of the stencil with a Pigma Micron Pen and shadowed with a grey brush marker. I added a strip of the most beautiful White Lace Tape from Pavilio and built my title from uber-sparkly Meri Meri Glitter Alphabet Stickers grounded with a description in old-school label tape. I traced a few extra icons from the stencil on a piece of gel-printed paper backed with cardstock which I cut out and mounted on foam tape at the upper right hand corner to give it a little extra color and texture. Finally I punched holes in the covers and a few dozen index cards using my Crop-a-Dile, and gathered up a bunch of my favorite pens so I am ready to roll on June first.

I hope you take time to do something creative every day, whether you participate in ICAD, make cards for your friends, keep a Travelers Notebook, or try new recipes. And remember that The Ink Pad has everything you need to be inspired when your projects involve stamps, paper, ink, stickers, embellishments and more! ♥

Friday, May 22, 2020

Belles Are Blinging

We're never ones to eschew the sparkly, glittery or blingy at Jingle Belles, so this fortnight we invite you to get out all your favorite sparkly things and use them on a brand new holiday card. There's even a little prize for one lucky cardmaker who links up with us. Here's what I made:

Of course when I think of bling, I generally go right for my Eyelet Outlet goodies, lol! Believe it or not, there's less than half a pack of Swirl Bling on this card, though admittedly, I changed the shapes quite a bit by cutting them apart and re-arranging them to fit my design better. I also made a circle mat from American Crafts' POW Glitter Cardstock for a little more flash. I was honored to be last week's winner at Sketch Saturday, so I thought it would be fun to use this week's (equally awesome!) sketch (#610) to thank them for that. All of my patterned papers are last year's Christmas in the Country collection by Prima Marketing, from my lss, Paper Anthology.

Be sure to hop over to Jingle Belles and see Stephanie's beautiful card and start planning what Bling-centric creations you will make! ♥

Thursday, May 21, 2020

Wednesday, May 20, 2020

It's Been a Long, Long Time...

...since I (Lauren) have made a scrapbook layout! But my niece Maddie turned sixteen last week, and since a party (or any other social activity) was obviously out of the question, my sister came up with the rather brilliant idea of compiling a surprise scrapbook. She sent blank pages, a few supplies and postage-paid return envelopes to family and friends, and got back unbelievably beautiful and touching results. I was surprised, once I got going, not only how many ideas I had... but how many of my ideas involved Eyelet Outlet Brads! Here's maybe my favorite of the pages I made:

I love using brads to make a frame on cards, but it turns out they're even cooler around a photo! I took this picture of Maddie and her Nana (who also happens to be my mom!) when Maddie was one day old and it is still a favorite. To surround it, I chose brads and bling that either had a baby theme, or were pink, or both. I've got Heart Brads, Teddy Bears, Safety Pins, Ducks, a Colorful Lady Bug, a Butterfly,  Flower Jewels, Heart Pearls, and tiny Pearl Bling.

One of the great things about making a scrapbook for an older kid in the year 2020 is that they (and their parents) have their own social media feeds, full of pictures you know they like. So it's possible to do a bit of lurking and photo-stealing, to get shots you might not have thought to take! This beautiful selfie records the day that Madeline got her braces off. As soon as I saw that smile --and the white space above her head-- I started thinking "thought bubble". I used a combination of stickers and brads to make a little collage of a few happy things I thought she might be thinking about, like school, treats, the beach, etc. I scattered a Computer Brad, Spring Bubble, Selfie BradLight Bulb, Scissors, Sun and some Mini Emotion Brads around my sticker sentiment, #Sixteen.

Whether you make layouts or cards, Eyelet Outlet has the perfect embellishments for all of your projects. Check out the huge selection of Brads, Bling, Sequins, Washi Tape and more!

Monday, May 18, 2020

It's Mandala Monday Again

And we're celebrating at The Ink Pad because we have all three sets of Dina Wakley's awesome Scribble Sticks back in stock, in limited quantities, and ready to ship immediately from the NJ branch office! Including the fabulous Set #3, which has the metallic colors that Dina demonstrated in her April 30th Demo With Dina Session on The Art of Dina Wakley FaceBook page, in which The Ink Pad was featured as Store Spotlight. This project features Set #1, and there's lots more about the process as well as pics of other fabulous new Ranger Arrivals on The Ink Pad Blog today! ♥

Friday, May 15, 2020

Belles Are Ringing

Because we're still making cards that feature bells at Jingle Belles! Here's what I made this week:

journal card: simple stories; patterned paper: echo park; cardstock: bazzill; ribbon and trimming from my stash; holly brads and star sequins: eyelet outlet; adhesives: elmers brand gluetape, 3m foam tape, nuvo deluxe adhesive 

I love that so many paper companies include journal cards in their paper lines and I tend to snap them up, because they're the perfect "kickstart" to a card design. This one hails from Simple Stories' "Claus and Co" line from a few years ago. I added a little handstitching, a pair of Eyelet Outlet Holly Brads and a scattering of EO Star Sequins (attached with Nuvo Deluxe Adhesive, perfect for the job) to the journal card, matted and added a few trimmings et voila! An almost instant A7 holiday card that's flat and mailable, but still has enough texture to be interesting!

Hop over to Jingle Belles to see the growing Readers' Gallery and Stephanie's beautiful card, then link up one of your own!

Thursday, May 14, 2020

"I Want to...

...Wake Up in the City That Never Sleeps!" as Frank Sinatra sang so memorably. At the moment, New York is not quite the hustling, bustling metropolis we all love and grumble about in equal measure. I definitely never expected to miss traffic or a crowded commuter train! In the two months which have elapsed since the last time I was at The Ink Pad in the new Chelsea location, I've even found myself feeling nostalgic for things that usually make me complain the most. But I know we will be back there again,  hopefully before too long. In the meantime I'm making projects that send good vibes to my favorite town! Check out this one on The Ink Pad Blog today!

Wednesday, May 13, 2020

Flock Stars!

Everyone knows that I cannot resist a diabolical pun, so when my friend and Eyelet Outlet Alumnus Stephanie showed me a fun bird illustration with the phrase "Party Like a Flock Star" of course my first thought was, that it make a great card... especially  if Eyelet Outlet Flamingo Brads were the flock in question!

I had two different ideas for making this concept visual, so rather than spend time deciding between them, I just made both! For my first card, I used an ink-blended panel in bright sea and sky colors, and added a few torn strips of Glitter Gold Tape to be sand and a few torn strips of Cloud Tape up in the sky. I added a Sun and Cloud Brad, plus a Rainbow to the top right and my *flock* of Flamingo Brads at the lower left, with my sticker sentiment occupying the space between.

My second idea was much more minimal, so I even pared down the sentiment, making it into a thank you card instead of a birthday greeting. I blended a very small area of the same ink colors and used one of my nested star dies to draw a star just a bit bigger than a Flamingo Brad. Then I paired the smaller alphabet stickers with my trusty old school Dymo Labelmaker, and finally added a few Star Brads from the Red, White and Blue set.

I hope you'll fly on over to the Eyelet Outlet Store and treat yourself to some fun embellishments and then use them to make cards for your "flock" of friends! ♥

Tuesday, May 12, 2020

SOS420: Oh the Places You'll Go

I love making art and cards based on a specific place, so this fortnight's challenge at Shopping Our Stash is definitely for me! We want to see projects that have a travel theme OR reference a specific location OR feature a map. I've got two outta three, see?

cocktail, pineapple and aloha stamps: avery elle; stamped in black ranger archival ink and colored with gansai tambi watercolors; flower, foliage and shell stickers plus faux polaroid frames: doodlebug design; sheet music and map from my stash of vintage goodies... scanned and printed slightly smaller to fit on my A7 card; patterned paper: basic grey + dcwv; sticky pearls: eyelet outlet; adhesives: elmers brand glue tape, 3m foam tape

I went with Hawaii for my location because I knew I had some cool older Doodlebug tropical collections plus my brand new Avery Elle "Aloha" mini stamp set that I was dying to use. I've even worked in bits of a vintage Honolulu tourist map and some sheet music, though both of those are actually scans so that I could resize them slightly smaller. I have less than half a sheet left of Doodle Bug's Spring Garden paper with the colorful faux polaroid frames, and I am going to miss them when they are gone, lol. Usually I make little scenes inside them, but this time I just used the stacked shapes to hold my little cluster of stickers and called it good.

Be sure to check out all of the beautiful and exotic DT creations at SOS and then start planning the Places You'll Go! ♥

Sunday, May 10, 2020

Plants For Mom

Hello and Happy Mother's Day to everyone who is celebrating from the gang at The Ink Pad, and Happy Sunday to the rest of us! Here's a pretty card based on Hero Arts' Greenhouse Peek-a-Boo Stamp which could be sent to a mom, a dad, a plant lover, a cat lover or... well... pretty much anyone! On The Ink Pad Blog today!

Friday, May 8, 2020

Jingle Bells/Belles

We're celebrating BELLS at Jingle Belles this fortnight, so break out the sleigh bells, the church bells and of course the jingle bells and make a card with us!

all papers are authentique holiday selection from various years, purchased at paper anthology; brads and bling: eyelet outlet; 25 sticker: idea-ology; holly: prima; corner rounder: we r memory keepers; frayed burlap distress ink for edges: ranger; adhesives: elmers brand gluetape, 3m foam tape, glue dots

This card took an embarrassingly long time to make, considering it consists only of panels of Authentique patterned paper from my lss, Paper Anthology (who, btw, have just added an awesome online storefront!) which you would think would seriously limit how much dithering a person (even me!) could do. But alas, no. I fell in love with this week's awesome Sketch Saturday (#608) and became obsessed with finding exactly the right image to go in each shape. Note to self: lighten up!!! Having said all of that, I am really pleased with the result and there are worse things than wallowing for an hour or so in your collection of beautiful holiday papers, right?

Hop over to Jingle Belles to see Stephanie's lovely card and start planning how YOU will "ring in" this challenge!

Thursday, May 7, 2020

Sequins and Sarcasm

What do you get when you combine Dyan Reavley's signature snark with super-glam Pretty Pink Posh embellies? A card that's elegant and fun ...and on The Ink Pad Blog today!

Wednesday, May 6, 2020

Highly Koala-fied!

If you're looking for KOALA-tee embellishments, you'll definitely want to check out the adorable new Eyelet Outlet Koala (and Sloth) Brads! Here are a couple of cards that I made, complete with especially diabolical puns!

But first, the Diabolical Puns, which I made myself, using a variety of free fonts. I've made them into jpgs, so that anyone as silly as I am can right-click, save and print them out. They'll also be on the EO Blog Freebies Page.

For my first card, I swapped out part of the sentiment for alphabet stickers and a white Heart Brad, that I placed below the diecut window holding a foliage forest in which my Koala Brad is climbing. 

For my second card, I wanted to convey the idea of the two Koalas being apart, so I used nested dies to cut a bunch of different sized stars from an abstract leafy paper, then scattered them across the front of the card. I placed each little dude inside his own star, climbing up a few wavily handcut stalks of bamboo.

Like everyone else who's been sidelined for over a month, I miss spending KOALA-tee time in the outside world! But if I have to be stuck at home, it's awesome to have lots of cute and inspiring Eyelet Outlet Brads to play with!

Monday, May 4, 2020

Scribble Stick Mandala Monday

Have you been watching Dina Wakley's Demo With Dina series on her Art of Dina Wakley FaceBook page? If not, you need to pencil in some time at 1pm Eastern on Tuesdays and Thursdays because not only is Dina a wonderful, inspiring teacher; she's very funny and entertaining. She is also a true friend and supporter of independent art stores, so each session she's added a feature called Store Spotlight. Can you guess who the featured store was this past Thursday, April 30th? Here's a hint: it was The Ink Pad! If you missed the live streaming session it's archived HERE. I recommend it, not just because it featured TIP (tho that was cool!); but also, Dina was making art with her Scribble Sticks, and I was so inspired that I immediately had to get mine out and have a play, using some of the tips and techniques Dina used in the demo.

In the interests of full disclosure, I should mention that at the moment, The Ink Pad does not currently have any Scribble Sticks in stock. They're on order from Ranger, all three sets, including the third one which contains the metallic colors Dina used in the demo. On the plus side, at the moment, anything you buy from TIP that's backordered, will ship to you for free!

At the moment, I only own the first set of Dina Wakley Scribble Sticks, though I can tell you that five minutes into Dina's demonstration, I had already texted Anna to say I neeeeeeeeeeeded the rest, lol! But the limited palette did not stop me from having a blast. For my first experiment, I worked on plain Canson Watercolor Paper, and basically just tried different ways to lay down the color to blend the shades, to add and subtract water, etc. I found that a wet crayon lays down color that is much more blend-able, but also a bit sheer. Scribbling with a dry crayon and then going over with a wet brush will result in a much harder line, though you can still "pull" some of the pigment around. At the end of my play session, I couldn't resist adding what Dina calls The Pox... those awesome splatters that you get by getting a Scribble Stick thoroughly wet and flicking it at your paper! When the entire page was bone dry, I added details with a fine-tipped, black Pigma Micron pen. (This worked because I had blended my Scribble Stick pigment quite a bit, so it was pretty flat to the page. If you have beautiful lumps of pigment, you'll want to avoid using a pen with a "cloggable" nib; stick with a Stabilo Pencil, a Posca Paint Pen, or a fountain pen!)

My second page is entirely a fluke. I started drawing a mandala with the Scribble Sticks on vintage ledger paper and discovered almost immediately that it was not going to hold up to more than the most minimal contact with water. So I put it aside, let it dry, and basically just used it as a "test" page to try out colors of my Dina Wakley Media Heavy Body Acrylics; to see what the Gel Press Petite Butterfly from Sally Lynn MacDonald's Sweet Nature set would look like, stamped with  inside a circle; to see what Michelle Ward's Manhole Hex stamp would look like inside the butterfly, and so forth. But... as I worked away without any expectations... I found that I quite liked where it was going and instead of switching to a "real" piece I just kept going. I added the word, "fly" using a sponge dauber dipped in Dina's Evergreen HB Acrylic, with Stencil Girl's Vintage Typewriter Alphabet (Lowercase). Then Dina's Spaced Dots stencil with the even drier daubers that had a bit of blue or green paint on them. After the page was entirely and completely dry I decided to try one more experiment: rolling it into my vintage Royal typewriter and adding --in the more sparsely painted areas-- a quote I found online, "Flying starts on the ground. The more grounded you are, the higher you can fly".

As a matter of fact, I didn't plan to make my two pieces be two half circles that would fit together, but when I saw that it was serendiptiously happening, I confess that I made the most of it by limiting the palette (mostly Night, Turquoise, Sky and Lime); by echoing some of the same shapes and by trimming the two pieces so they would line up perfectly. I'm both surprised and pleased by the result!

I hope you'll check out Demo With Dina and then afterwards, that you'll be inspired to make some art of your very own! ♥

Friday, May 1, 2020

Merry Sketch-mas to You

At Jingle Belles, we're still making cards based on Stephanie's beautiful sketch, and you're still invited to join the fun, which we hope you will!

A reminder that you can swap the shapes, play with the proportions, flip or rotate the sketch, just make sure we can see "the bones" of it! Here's what I made this week:

snowman and flake diecuts: pebbles inc; patterned paper: my mind's eye, elle's studio; snowflake brad: doodlebug design; ancient deco tape: heidi swapp; equally ancient ribbon: my mind's eye; pearl flourish and tiny pearls in jar: eyelet outlet; border punch: recollections; adhesives: elmers gluetape, 3m foam tape, scor-tape to secure ribbon at back of panel

I've had the pack of Pebbles diecuts from which this sweet snowman-in-a-jar came, for more years than I'd like to admit to, lol! I think it's the perfect thing for this sketch, though, so I swapped him for the tag shape. I used suitably winter-ish layers of patterned paper, skinny tape and grosgrain ribbon and added an Eyelet Outlet Pearl Bling Swirl that I cut apart and rebuilt in a shape that fit better on my card. 

Ski, snowshoe, sled, or fly your reindeer over to Jingle Belles to check out what Stephanie made this week and to link up your own Sketc-centric creation! ♥