Tuesday, December 27, 2016

Set of Floral Thanks cards

This week's CAS409 challenge is to make thank you cards.  I found this gorgeous reverse silhouette flower stamp from Art Neko's Flowers and Whimsy sheet and I stamped it in several different colors.  I love all the colors I tried.  In the picture below, I used the following inks: daffodil, mint, peach, lagoon, and sugarplum.  It's so fun to have a rainbow of cards like this!

The "thanks" sentiment is from Art Neko's Full Sheet of Oriental Images and Text sheet.  See how there is a tiny bird on the "t" in "Thanks?"  That's so cute!!!  There is also a small kanji character at the end of the sentiment.  I stamped this sentiment in black on all the cards so it would stand out against whatever color I stamped the flowers with.

This is a great CAS card to have in my stash.  I need to stamp some more with different sentiments so I can have them ready when I need them.  This flower stamp would be great with almost any kind of sentiment - thank you, birthday, thinking of you, sympathy, and congratulations.  Check out the great stamps at Art Neko today!

Wednesday, December 21, 2016

Gold Dot Snowflakes

Hi everyone!  This is a card that I sent to Annette and her family, the owners of Art Neko.  I used the gorgeous gold dot fabric paper in the center of the die cut frame.  You can see how the gold dots are so shiny and shimmery.  I added some punched snowflakes with sequins affixed to the centers on the frame.  

Check out all the gorgeous papers in the Art Neko store.  I love their selection of gold and silver patterns on the fabric papers - so cool!

I hope you all have a very Merry Christmas this weekend.  Stay safe and have fun!

Wednesday, December 14, 2016

Scenic Village Christmas Tag

Hi folks!  Today I'm sharing this modern black and white Christmas tag with y'all.  I used some stamps from Art Neko's Victorian Christmas stamp set to create this fun little scenic tag.  I started by stamping the village scene with archival black ink onto white cardstock, and then I cut it out with an arch die.  I wanted some sparkle on this tag, so I covered the whole thing with a diamond glitter glue and set it aside to dry.  You can see the fabulous sparkle in the picture below:

Once the glitter glue was dry, I cut out a larger arch from black cardstock and matted it to the glittery scene.  The little "Merry Christmas" sentiment on the Victorian Christmas sheet fits perfectly at the bottom of this village, so I stamped that with the same black archival ink onto white cardstock, cut it out, and matted it with black cardstock.  I adhered this onto the tag below the village scene.

To finish out my tag, I punched a hole at the top and threaded some black and white ribbons through.  I used a narrow white ribbon to tie a pretty bow around all the ribbons at the top of the tag.

I hope you have had fun shopping at Art Neko!  They have an amazing selection of Christmas stamps, don't they?  :-)

Monday, December 5, 2016

Snowflakes on Peacock Background

Hi everyone!!  I'm sharing another Christmas card today.  See the fabulous multi-colored blue background?  I shared how I did that in a tutorial over on the Art Neko blog, so please head over there to check it out.  It's a fun and messy technique with a big "wow" factor.

Inks: Versamark, Peacock Feathers distress, Blueprint Sketch distress, Mermaid Lagoon distress
CS: hot press watercolor paper, white
Other: white embossing powder, mister filled with water

Friday, December 2, 2016

Santa in Sepia

Did you know that Art Neko has Christmas stamps?  I love this vintage image of Santa holding presents for all the little boys and girls out there.  The old-timey look of this stamp just called for a sepia treatment on this image.  
I started by stamping this Santa (from Art Neko's Victorian Christmas stamp set) with Potting Soil Archival ink onto some white cardstock.  I sponged some kraft ink around Santa, leaving his face and beard white.  I then sponged around the edges with a chocolate brown ink.  The edges were distressed with a distress tool.
For the copper background, I cut some white cardstock larger than the Santa panel.  I inked up the edges with Versamark, sprinkled them with copper embossing powder, and melted the powder with my heat gun.  I adhered the Santa panel to this copper background, and then I adhered that to a chocolate brown card base.  Some copper shimmer baker’s twine was tied around the top of the card.
Have you seen the lovely stamps in the Victorian Christmas stamp set?  You could easily do this sepia technique with all of those images.  This card is quick and easy to make so you can get it in the mail to a loved one.  

Monday, November 28, 2016

CAS405 Watercolor Powder Foliage

Hi everyone!  I'm back with another CAS challenge, and this time it is hosted by my friend Chrissy.  She wants to see Christmas foliage on your Clean And Simple cards (CAS405)this week.  I was playing around with this beautiful Poinsettia Sketch background from Impression Obsession, and I wanted to see how it looked with some watercolor powders on it.

I embossed this first card with gold embossing powder and then I sprinkled some Blackcurrant and Cerise Infusions watercolor powders on it.  I lightly misted the powders with water and this explosion of pinks appeared.  

I loved that so much, I wanted to see how it looked with some other colors.  

So I embossed the poinsettia stamp again but this time with silver embossing powder.  I sprinkled some Royal Blood and Night Storms Infusions over it and misted with water.  There is a lovely mix of blue, purple, green, and brown going on with this one.

On to my third card, I went back to the gold embossing powder for the stamp.  I sprinkled Cerise and Sunset Beach Infusions on this and misted with water.  These created a deeper reddish pink colored card.

For my last card, I embossed with copper embossing powder and sprinkled with Jade and Sage Infusions powders.  After I misted with water, this glorious mix of blues, greens, teals, jades, sages, and browns appeared.  Whoa!  This one is my favorite!  :-)

Come on over to SCS and play in our CAS405 challenge this week!  

Sunday, November 20, 2016

Watercolored Sunflowers

Hi everyone!  I felt like coloring Friday night, so I pulled out my Winsor and Newton artist watercolor paints and started watercoloring this image from Power Poppy.  There were only 10 of these tubes of paint in this set, so I got creative and started mixing some colors together.  I wanted each flower to be unique, so it was fun to mix up all sorts of different colors for my flowers.

You can see my paint palette below:

Even though I was limited to the 10 tubes of paint, I think I managed to get a broad range of colors.  My goal was to have all kinds of yellows, oranges, and reds, with that tiny touch of green for the foliage.  This will be going to a sweet friend whom I love to "talk nerdy" with.  LOL!

Stamps: In Praise of Sunflowers and Sassy Succulents (sentiment) from Power Poppy
Ink: SU Archival Black
Paint: Winsor and Newton artist watercolor paints

Sunday, November 13, 2016

CAS403 Pinecone Tidings

Hi folks!  This week's CAS403 challenge, Ho Ho Ho, is to put three of something on your card.  As you can see, I put three pinecones on my card.  :-)  But I can see you're wondering about the background.  That was the fun part of creating this card.

I went to a stamping retreat a couple weekends ago, and we played with a new product called Infusions.  They are watercolor powders with some ground walnut shells added in there, and those walnut shells give the colors a wonderful earthy hue.  Well, of course, I was smitten, and I rushed home from the retreat and bought all 12 colors as soon as I found them at Frantic Stamper.

On this card, I sprinkled some Jade and Sage Infusions powders onto some Fabriano hot press watercolor paper.  I misted the powders with water until the colors just started to bleed and then I set it aside to dry.  Once it was completely dry, I ran it through a Pine Bough embossing folder.  I added the die cut pine cones and stamped the sentiment at the bottom.  It needed just one more accent, so I tied a tiny little bow from linen thread and added it to the double pinecone.

Come on and play in the CAS403 challenge over on SCS this week!  Just keep your card clean and simple, and put three of something on there.  

Stamps: Christmas Pines (Stampin Up)
Ink: Suede (Stampin Up)
CS: Suede (Stampin Up), Fabriano Studio hot press watercolor paper
Other: Christmas Pines dies (Stampin Up), linen thread, Pine Bough embossing folder (Stampin Up), Sage and Jade Infusions watercolor powders (I bought mine from Frantic Stamper)

Tuesday, November 8, 2016

Steampunk Dragonfly with Peacock Background

Hi everyone! I went to a stamping retreat last weekend, and we learned several fun new techniques for making backgrounds. This particular background was loosely called a "peacock background." To make this one, you need a nonstick craft mat, some Inka Gold (a gold wax paste), Mermaid Lagoon distress ink, and Peacock Feathers distress ink. 

Smoosh the two distress inks onto your craft mat in separate areas.  Spoon out a small amount of the Inka Gold wax onto the craft mat.  Mist the wax with some water and use a toothpick to mix the wax and water together.  Mist the two inks with water and then dip your cardstock into the inks and then into the liquid gold wax.  Dry the cardstock with a heat tool, and then dip it back into the inks and liquid gold wax again.  Dry it again with the heat tool.  Repeat until your background is covered with ink and gold to your liking.

I thought this background would be perfect with the steampunk dragonfly from Art Neko's Steampunk Fun stamp sheet.  I stamped the dragonfly with Versamark and then dusted it with some gold Perfect Pearls powder.  After I brushed off the excess powder, I fussy cut the dragonfly and adhered it with some dimensionals.  

The sentiment, also from Art Neko, was stamped with an archival brown ink directly onto the peacock background.  I needed something that would stamp on top of the gold wax, so an archival ink is the way to go.  Some sequins were added around the card for some extra sparkle.

Have you seen all the fun steampunk stamps on the Steampunk Fun sheet?  Which one is your favorite?  :-)

Tuesday, November 1, 2016

Little Chickadee on Woodgrain

Isn't that little chickadee the cutest thing?  I couldn't resist coloring him up when I got this stamp from Art Neko.  This little ATC Chicadee in a Pine Tree is from the State Birds and Flowers Set 6 stamp plate.  I stamped this with SU Archival Black ink onto some white cardstock and let it dry.  The sky areas were sponged with Soft Sky ink before I set about watercoloring the bird and tree.  

I pulled out my Zig Clean Color markers and I love how the tiny little brushes can color such small areas.  The pine needles were flicked with two different colors of green and I left those alone.  The branch was watercolored as well as the bird.  This means that I laid down a little bit of color from the markers and then went over it with a wet brush and pulled the color out.  I didn't want to lose the "needle" look of my green flicks, so that's why I didn't go over those with a wet brush.

The background was pressed through a woodgrain embossing folder and then sponged with some brown ink to make the raised areas stand out.  I wrapped some linen thread around the bottom and then I attached the chickadee piece with some foam tape.

Check out all the State Birds and Flowers in this set HERE.  Isn't that great?  You can also look for your own state in the search box and buy your own State Bird and Flower stamp separately.  :-)

Sunday, October 23, 2016

CAS400 Glittery Noel Angel

Over on SCS, we are celebrating the 400th CAS challenge this week.  Wow!  In honor of this huge milestone, Miss Lee is asking us to create a card using items that begin with the letters CAS.  For my card, I chose the following:

C - Christmas
A - Angel
S - Sparkle

I stamped the angel with Lost Lagoon ink and let it dry.  Then I added 1/8" tape to all four edges and covered them with white gold glitter.  I cut out the Noel sentiment from a sticky tape sheet and covered it with the same white gold glitter.  I love how this glitter looks with this Lagoon ink and cardstock. :-)

Come play with our celebratory challenge this week! Check out the CAS challenges in the forum HERE.

Friday, October 21, 2016

Sunflower Smiles

I'm back again today with another Falliday Fest card to share with y'all.  Patty has a very unique challenge up on SCS today which is part inspiration challenge, part color challenge, and part cooking/recipe challenge.  You'll have to read all about it HERE.

I colored this beautiful sunflower from Power Poppy with my Prismacolor Premiere pencils.  (I looooooooooove those Power Poppy stamps!!!)  I had a lot of fun keeping with the theme of the ingredients for apple pie - green and red apples, vanilla, brown sugar, and cinnamon.  These ingredients translated into the colors I used on my card.  For a fun little touch of whimsy, I added some sequins here and there.

Come play in the Falliday Fest challenges with us!  Tomorrow is the last day, so hurry on over and check out the challenges HERE.  Happy Friday!

In Praise of Sunflowers - Power Poppy
Prairie Cheer (sentiment) - Power Poppy

Chocolate Chip, Strathmore Bristol Bright White from Paper Temptress
Sugar Hill dp from Farm House

sequins, sheer brown ribbon, Prismacolor Premiere pencils

Thursday, October 20, 2016

Denim Kinkade Christmas

Hey folks!  We are almost in the home stretch for the Falliday Fest challenges over on SCS.  One of the challenges today was to make a blue Christmas card, so I immediately thought of my Thomas Kinkade stamps from Cornish Heritage Farms.  This is one of the original stamps with the wood block, and the easiest way to ink this up is with a brayer.

I inked up the brayer with denim blue ink and rolled it all over the top of the Kinkade stamp.  Then I placed my smooth white paper over the top and held it in place while I pressed the paper onto the stamp.  When I pulled the paper off, this beautiful image is what resulted.  I found a sentiment that would fit across the top and stamped it with the same blue ink.

I love making clean and simple cards like this, and I love making them flat and mail-able.  That is so important when mailing out tons of Christmas cards every year.  :-)

Go check out the Falliday Fest challenges and play along with us!  You have until the end of the month to finish the challenges and upload your cards for a chance to win an awesome prize from one of our sponsors!

Tuesday, October 11, 2016

Steampunk Feather

Hi again!  I'm back with another Falliday challenge card, and this is the one I created for Bev's (TexasGrammy) challenge.  She challenged us to randomly smoosh Versamark over cardstock and emboss it with any color of embossing powder.  

I pulled out some black cardstock and dotted that with my Versamark ink pad.  I covered it with gold embossing powder, but when I was shaking off the excess powder, I accidentally hit the edge of my scratch paper.  This left a "line" where the embossing powder was scraped off.  After looking at it, I actually liked that look. so I jabbed the scratch paper at my black cardstock some more.  I then hit it with the heat gun and I got this cool looking background.  

I thought this background would look perfect with some steampunk images, so I pulled out my Steampunk Fun stamps from Art Neko.  This steampunk feather was just calling my name, so I stamped it with Versamark and covered it with the same gold embossing powder as the background.  I love the way this looks with that handmade background!

Check out the Falliday challenges over in the SCS forum HERE.  Play along with us for a chance to win prizes!

Monday, October 10, 2016

Happy Holly Days!

Hi folks!!  I'm one of the hostesses for the Falliday challenges over on SCS, and my challenge is up today.  Falliday is two weeks of fun holiday challenges and tutorials designed to help you get jump-started on your fall, Halloween, Thanksgiving, and Christmas cards.  You can find all the challenges over in the forum HERE.

For my challenge - FF16hbrown, I want to see what you create with holly leaves and berries.  I pulled out this holly background stamp from Impression Obsession and embossed it with Forest Green embossing powder.  I colored the berries with Hot Cinnamon Twinkling H2O's paint, and then I covered the berries with Glossy Accents.  This helps seal the paint so it won't run when it is sprayed with water or shimmer spray.  I sprayed Old Lace Glimmer Mist all over the piece for a subtle gold shimmer.  While that was drying, I stamped the sentiment with Versamark and embossed it with gold embossing powder.  

Head over to the Falliday forum and play along in the challenges with us.  Be sure to use this keyword - FF16hbrown - when you upload your card for my challenge.  :-)  Happy Holly Days!

Monday, September 19, 2016

Pink Watercolored Flowers

As promised, here is the card that I worked on last week.  I showed some sneak peeks of this on Facebook, and now you can see it in its entirety.  :-)

I embossed this gorgeous flower from Art Neko's Flowers and Whimsy sheet with clear embossing powder onto some Fabriano Studio Hot Press watercolor paper.  I then pulled out some Zig Clean Color markers and had a blast watercoloring these flowers.

I started with a pale blue around the edges of the flowers and leaves.  After I let it dry, I then added some deep green color to the edges of the leaves, and then I used a wet paintbrush to pull that color out to the rest of the area.  I love that splotchy, uneven-ness of watercoloring.  :-)  I waited again for the green ink to dry before starting in on the flowers.  I actually used a deep red color, but when I pulled the color out with a wet paintbrush, it turned into this vibrant pink color.  That was a fun surprise!  :-)

After the piece dried completely, I cut it down and matted it with some Garden Green cardstock.  I found this magenta ribbon that coordinated perfectly with my flowers, so I tied it around the bottom and then adhered this piece with some foam tape onto a Sahara Sand card base. 

The sentiment, from Art Neko's Friendship, Get Well, and Thank You's sheet, was stamped with Garden Green ink onto a scrap piece of the watercolor paper.  I cut it out with a circle die and then adhered it with foam tape next to the flowers.

Go check out the flowers and sentiments over at Art Neko.  I think you'd be pleasantly surprised at the variety of stamps there.  :-)

I hope you have a wonderful week!

Saturday, September 17, 2016

Gold Paper Weaving with Vase

Hi everyone!  I just posted this card over on the Art Neko Galleries blog, and I wanted to let y'all know.  I did some more paper weaving, this time with black and gold cardstocks.  I used a much tighter weave and it reminds me of a placemat or a rug.  I had a lot of fun playing with this, just experimenting with the tightness and looseness of the weave.

I stamped this image with Versamark and embossed it with gold embossing powder.  This is from Art Neko's Tea Time in the Orient sheet.  I thought this was a vase, but when I read the description on the website, it says it is a tea cup with a cover over it to keep the tea warm.  How neat!  It's fun to learn something new!

Thursday, September 15, 2016

Red Dragonfly in Autumn

Good morning!  I posted this card over on the Art Neko Galleries blog a couple of days ago, and I thought I'd share it here as well.  I was inspired by the sentiment to stamp the dragonflies in a red ink.  The rainbow strip is sponged with the rich earthy hues of autumn.  Please check out the post over on the Art Neko Galleries blog to read more about this card.  :-)

Monday, September 12, 2016

CAS394 At One with Nature

Good morning!  I am hosting this week's CAS394 challenge over on SCS, and I am asking you to be At One with Nature.  Make a one layer card with a nature theme.

I decided to go with a rustic Christmas theme for my cards, and I'm sharing two ways you can do this challenge.  You can use just stamps for your card, or you can use a combo of stamps and dies.  On my first card, I just used stamps and some linen thread on my kraft card.  On the second card, I used a snowflake stamp and a sentiment stamp and then added some die cuts of greenery and pinecones and a big red bow.

I used the new Christmas Pines stamps and dies from Stampin Up for both of my cards.  These are going to be great for mass production, as these cards came together very quickly.  I can't decide which one I like better, so I'll just have to make a bunch of both, right?  LOL

Come play along with us in the CAS394 challenge.  When you upload your card to the SCS gallery, make sure to use keyword CAS394 so we can see what you've created for this challenge.  Have a great week!

Saturday, September 10, 2016

Washi Paper Weaving with Kanji

Hi everyone!  Are you enjoying your weekend?  Today has been wonderful - it almost feels like fall outside, which is sooooooo not normal for this time of year in Texas.  I'm really enjoying this little cool front!  :-)

I belong to a Yahoo group called Oriental Stamp Art, and this month's technique challenge caught my eye.  We were challenged to do any kind of weaving on our artwork, so I pulled out some washi paper and some gold cardstock and cut them into tiny strips.  I wanted to be able to see the gorgeous artwork on the washi paper, so I did some minimal weaving with just five strips of gold cardstock across all the strips of washi paper.  

The sentiment, from Art Neko's Japanese Kanji sheet, was stamped with Versamark onto some black cardstock and then embossed with gold embossing powder.  I cut it out with a circle die and adhered it to my paper weaved background with some foam tape.

If you would like to join the Oriental Stamp Art group, please visit the Yahoo group page here.  Click on the "Join" button and follow the directions.  After you've been approved, you can join the fun and share your Oriental artwork.

Sunday, September 4, 2016

CAS393 Imagine with Books

This week's CAS393 challenge is "Back to School."  I had to look around for a stamp of a book or books, and I finally found this one in my stash from Unity.  I stamped it onto some hot press Fabriano Studio watercolor paper with SU Archival Black ink.  Then I played with my Zig Clean Color markers by coloring the books with the markers and then going over them with a wet brush. I loved being able to go back over some areas with more color and adding more water here and there. Such a fun experiment! 

After the books dried, I cut them out and set them aside. I very lightly stenciled my white card base with whatever green was on my sponge (great way to use up leftover inks that are still on your sponge) and then added the books over the stenciled area with foam tape. A skinny black strip was added to the side and it is my little "nod" to those old composition books we used to have for school. :-)

The sentiment is from JustRite's Whisper of Wings set, and I stamped it with the same SU Archival Black ink.  CAS stands for Clean And Simple, so I decided to stop there before I piled on some baker's twine or some enamel dots or something else.  If you would like to play along, please use keyword CAS393 when you upload your card to SCS.  You can see the beautiful samples in the gallery here.

Have a great week!

Friday, September 2, 2016

Watercolored Chyrsanthemum

I posted an extra card on the Art Neko Galleries blog today.  This gorgeous Framed Stained Glass Chyrsanthemum stamp from Art Neko was colored with Gansai Tambi watercolors.  I had so much fun just taking my time and experimenting with blending colors and creating highlights and shadows. 

Please head over to the Art Neko Galleries to read more about my card there.  While you are there, please check out what the other Art Neko Artists have created.  There is some beautiful eye candy for you to drool over!  :-)

Tuesday, August 30, 2016

CAS392 Just a Nuvo Note

This week's CAS392 challenge is to use diagonals on your clean and simple card.  I pulled out a stencil and very lightly sponged some pink ink onto my white cardstock.  I then added the die cut "note" near the bottom.  I stamped the "Just a" on a separate piece of white cardstock and cut it out and adhered it next to the "note" with foam tape.  I added some pink and clear Nuvo glitter drops around the sentiment and set that aside to dry.  The whole piece was added to a black card base.

Check out the CAS392 challenge over on SCS.  There are some very clever ways to use diagonals if you check out the gallery here.  Hope you have a great week!  Come on back on Friday when I will share an Art Neko project with you.  :-)

Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Medallion Framed Life

Howdy!  My card is up on the Art Neko Galleries blog today, so please head over there to check it out.  I've created a fun and easy card using medallion stamps from Art Neko.  I love this fresh new color combo as well - I was just playing around and came up with these three colors (Emerald Envy, Pumpkin Pie, Dapper Denim) by accident.  Love those happy accidents!  :-)

Sunday, August 21, 2016

CAS391 Grateful Butterfly Rainbow

Hi friends!  I'm hosting the CAS391 challenge over on SCS this week, and I'm asking everyone to show me their clean and simple cards with sunshine or rainbows or both.  My card is a one layer card, and I masked off an area and sponged the following colors onto the card base for my rainbow effect:

Cajun Craze
Pumpkin Pie
Daffodil Delight
Emerald Envy
Dapper Denim

The sentiment was stamped with black ink and it is from Power Poppy's Nice Things to Say set.  A delicate white butterfly was cut from a Cheery Lynn Designs die and adhered onto my rainbow.

Come play along with us and show me your CAS cards with sunshine or rainbows or both!  When you upload, please use keyword CAS391 so we can find your cards.  We'd love to see what you create!

Tuesday, August 9, 2016

Copper Tin Beauty

Good morning!  This card is up over on the Art Neko Galleries blog, so please head over there to see how I created this.  This gorgeous sentiment is from Art Neko, and it was just perfect for this card.

If you've been hesitant to look around the Art Neko store because you think it is only Asian themed stamps, please look again.  There are LOTS of non-Asian stamps there.  This sentiment is only one of hundreds of beautiful stamps in the Art Neko store.  There are some gorgeous florals and a state bird/flower collection as well as Western cowboy stamps and Victorian silhouettes.  Have a look around and you'll be surprised at the wonderful variety of stamps at Art Neko.  :-)

Tuesday, August 2, 2016

Verdigris Pagoda

Hello everyone!  I have some exciting news to share with you!!!!

The very first post for the new Art Neko blog just went live today!  My card, pictured above, is shown in the post over there and I have described how I created this.  Please visit the Art Neko Galleries blog and check it out.

While you are there, please take the time to subscribe to the Art Neko newsletter.  Scroll down to the bottom of the page, and on the right side, you will see a box to enter your email address.  Enter your email address and then click on the blue "Subscribe" button.  You will receive a confirmation email and you just follow the directions in the email to confirm your subscription.

Stay tuned over the next few weeks as the rest of the Design Team settles in and starts posting to the new Art Neko blog.  You're going to love their artwork!

Monday, August 1, 2016

Buzzy Bee

Have you been playing in the Dare to Get Dirty challenges over on SCS?  It's a week of stampy fun with tons of challenges.  This card is for one of the challenges from Day 1 (Saturday).  I can't tell y'all the details of the challenge - you have to go over there and see for yourself.  

I had a great time putting this one together.  I stamped all the hexagons in black ink and punched them out with a matching punch.  The bee was die cut and then stamped with the matching stamp in archival black ink.  Because I used the archival ink, I could not use Copic markers to color in the bee.  So I pulled out some Wild Honey distress ink, squooshed it onto my craft mat, and watercolored the little bee's body.  I used the same Wild Honey distress ink direct to paper and inked up some white cardstock for a background layer behind the hexagons.

I'm behind on the challenges because I didn't do any of them yesterday.  I was at my niece's baby shower and it was a wild and fun day.  I've got a lot of catching up to do!

Tuesday, July 26, 2016

Gold Hexagons

Have you been drooling over the stamps at Art Neko?  Every time I visit their website, I find more and more stamps that I want to play with.  One such stamp was this one, called Hexagons and Flowers.  

I really wanted to see how they would look with some shimmer paints called Silks.  I pulled out some greens and pinks and a pale blue paint and colored them with a paintbrush.  I used some Emperor's Gold Silks paint for the hexagons in the stamp and then I used the same gold paint on my hexagon background die cut.

For the blue background on my card base, I sprayed it with Mermaid Lagoon Distress Spray Stain, and then I decided it needed some shimmer.  I sprayed it again with some Patina Glimmer Mist, and then with some Iridescent Gold Glimmer Mist.  I love the shimmer on this card!

To help tone things down, I added some simple white butterflies with some hot pink rhinestones.  There is so much shimmer and gold going on, I didn't want the butterflies to overwhelm the card with yet more color and shimmer.  :-)

Stamp: Hexagons and Flowers from Art Neko
Ink: Tuxedo Black Memento
CS: White
Paint: pink, blue, and green Silks paints, Emperor's Gold Silks paint
Other: Mermaid Lagoon Distress Spray Stain, Patina Glimmer Mist, Iridescent Gold Glimmer Mist, hexagon background die, butterfly punch, hot pink rhinestones

Monday, July 25, 2016

CAS387 Shimmery Mistletoe

Happy Monday! The CAS challenge over on SCS this week (CAS387) is Christmas in July. I love making Christmas cards. When I saw this challenge, I knew the time had come for me to try something with my newest Christmas dies. 

I pulled out this winter foliage frame from PTI and cut it from white cardstock. Let me tell you - it was a PAIN! The first two were abject failures. I tried again with lots and lots of shims and finally got something that was almost decent. There were a couple of fussy pine branches that did not cut through completely, so you know what? I cut those babies off. LOL If you have this die and you're wondering why mine looks so different, there ya go. LOL!

Sooooo after a little water break, I decided to spray my frame with some green Mistletoe Glimmer Mist. I love Glimmer Mist! I set this aside to dry and set about cutting out the sentiment. These sentiment dies from Penny Black cut like buttah - noooooo problems! Whew! I cut it from white cardstock, and then I decided to color it with a dark red Copic marker for that traditional red and green Christmas combo.

Instead of adhering these to a white card base, I jazzed things up by using some shimmery Poison Ivory cardstock for my base. It feels like a real extravagance when I use shimmery cardstocks for my bases. :-)

Escape the heat dome and come play along in our CAS387 challenge this week. We'd love to see what your Christmas cards look like!  

Tuesday, July 19, 2016

Poppy Bookmark

Anyone who knows me knows that I love to read.  I have hundreds of books scattered around my house, and I am always in need of bookmarks.  Art Neko came out with a gorgeous sheet of stamps dedicated to creating bookmarks which you can see here.  I love them!!!  

I used the "So Many Books, So Little Time" bookmark stamp for my project today.  I colored the bookmark with Copic markers and then I covered the little clock face with some clear glaze and set it aside to dry.  To age my bookmark a little bit, I sponged some Gathered Twigs distress ink over the whole piece.  I cut out the stamped image and adhered it to a larger black cardstock piece and then put it inside a bookmark sleeve.  I adorned the bookmark with a red tassel to coordinate with my flowers.  

There are a bunch of gorgeous colors of tassels at Art Neko.  Just type in "tassel" in the search box and see all the selections - gold, black, blue, green, pink, white, chocolate, purple and burgundy are just a few of the colors there.  You can buy the bundle which includes the bookmark stamps, the bookmark sleeves, and the tassels by clicking on THIS link.  This is a great bargain!

If you want to just buy a few of the bookmark stamps, you can type in "bookmark" in the search box and you'll see all the bookmark stamps as well as the tassels and sleeves and other assorted stamps.  If you are like me, you'll start drooling over all the gorgeous stamps.  :-)

Here is a handy list of links to click on:

Bookmark stamps, sleeves, and tassels bundle -
Bookmarks and sentiments stamps -
Assorted bookmark stamps -
Tassels -
Bookmark sleeves -

Friday, July 15, 2016

You're How Old?!

Hahahaha!  These crazy birds from Tim Holtz crack me up.  I made this card for my brother's birthday.

I bought some Strathmore Bright White cardstock from Paper Temptress, and I was curious to see if it would stand up to a heavy spray and some watercoloring.  So I sprayed a piece of this white cardstock with different colors of Distress Spray Stains and it took the color beautifully.  It dried almost completely flat - which is awesome!  Normally when I spray any kind of cardstock, it warps like crazy but not this Strathmore Bright White.  I'm impressed!

Next, I watercolored the stamped bird with distress inks.  The bird was stamped with a waterproof black ink onto the Strathmore Bright White cardstock and I hit it with a heat gun to make sure it dried completely.  Then I pulled out some distress inks and watercolored the bird, going over some areas several times until I got the hues "just right."  This paper did not pill or tear or resist the ink.  I'm really happy with this paper!

My last test was running this Strathmore Bright White cardstock through my printer.  The sentiment was typed up on the computer and I printed it on a laser printer.  The printing is crisp and bold and did not flake off nor rub off.  I'm completely sold on this white cardstock.  I can use colored pencils on it, I can spray it, I can watercolor on it, and I can print on it.  How cool is that??

Stamp: Bird Crazy from Stampers Anonymous
Die: Bird Crazy from Stampers Anonymous
Ink: Basic Black Archival from Stampin Up, Pumpkin Pie from Stampin Up
Distress Ink: Faded Jeans, Chipped Sapphire
Distress Spray Stain: Lucky Clover, Mermaid Lagoon, Tumbled Glass, Salty Ocean, Picket Fence
Cardstock: black, Strathmore Bright White from Paper Temptress

Tuesday, July 12, 2016

Antiqued Plum Blossom Print

I was playing with this beautiful Plum Blossom Branch from Art Neko, and I came upon an interesting discovery.  Look closely at the picture below.  Look at the writing on the right side.  See how it looks like there is a pink-ish halo around the letters?  You can see this same pink halo emanating from the branches as well.

How did that happen?  It was a complete accident.  LOL  I stamped this Plum Blossom Branch with Tuxedo Black Memento ink onto white cardstock.  I then colored the flowers with pink Copic markers.  I decided I need a pale blue background, so I mixed up my own custom color by filling a mister bottle with some Pearl colored Perfect Pearls powder, some water, and a little bit of Tumbled Glass Distress Spray Stain.  

After I shook up the mister bottle, I sprayed the plum blossom piece several times.  My finger smudged a couple of edges, so I sprayed some more, and some more, and some more.  LOL  My paper was completely soaking wet, so I left it alone for several hours to dry.  When I came back to look at it, I gasped!  I thought I ruined it when I saw the pink-ish color running out from the black stamped areas.  And because the paper had been so heavily sprayed, it created a few creases in the paper as well.

But you know what?  The more I looked at this, the more I loved it.  It looks like a piece of faux silk with the creases and the distressed, antiqued image.  I love how this turned out, even though this was not the result I had in mind.  Always look for the beauty in every thing you do.  :-)

Ink: Tuxedo Black Memento
Paper: white, black, Hibiscus (pink)
Other: Copic markers, mister bottle with Tumbled Glass Distress Spray Stain, water, and Pearl Perfect Pearls powder

Monday, July 11, 2016

Love You to the Moon and Back in white

Hi everyone!  Today I'm sharing a card I made for Verses Rubber Stamps.  I used white cardstock for everything on this card and I stamped the Moon and Back sentiment in black ink.  It fits beautifully inside the embossed oval and I accented it with some die cut leaves and a flower.

You can find this Moon and Back sentiment in the Romance category on the Verses Rubber Stamps website.  There are a lot of gorgeous sentiments in there - I want them all!!  :-)

Tuesday, July 5, 2016

Dragonflies in Moonlight

Good morning, everyone!  I hope you had a wonderful 4th of July!  I have some exciting news to share with you today.  As you know, I've been designing for Art Neko on a freelance basis for a couple of years now, and I'm so happy to tell you that Art Neko now has a brand new Design Team.  I've been asked to head up the Design Team as the Coordinator, and we have some wonderful artwork to share with you.  You can see the Artists on the Art Neko Design Team by looking in my sidebar here (you may have to scroll down depending on your monitor).

Art Neko will soon have a brand new website that will be more user friendly, and there will be a blog and a gallery to go with the new website.  It's going to be so exciting!

To kick off our exciting news, I'm sharing this Dragonfly in Moonlight card with you this morning.  I embossed the Dragonfly in Moonlight stamp with gold embossing powder, and then I watercolored the image with my new Gansai Tambi watercolors.  I used the same powder to emboss the Flurry of Dragonflies and the Kanji stamps onto some dark blue cardstock.  I then created a layer of gold embossed cardstock as a mat for my moonlight scene and adhered that to my card base with foam tape.

Please have a look at the work that the Design Team Artists have created by going to their blogs listed in my sidebar.  We will be posting to our blogs every week, so there will be lots of gorgeous eye candy to drool over.  :-)

Monday, June 6, 2016

CAS380 Boots, Class, and a Lil' Sass

This week's CAS380 challenge is to make a clean and simple card with both dots and stripes.  The real challenge is to keep it clean and simple and not too busy.  So I pulled out some washi tape that had polka dots and stripes and arranged them randomly on my white card base.  I colored up this fun boot and flowers stamps from Unity to coordinate with the colors of the washi tape, and then I added the sentiment below the boot.  Fun fun fun!!!

Come play along in the CAS380 challenge with us!  If you upload to SCS, please use keyword CAS380 so we can find your card.

Monday, May 30, 2016

CAS379 Daisy Smile

This week's CAS challenge (CAS379) is to use one or more flowers on your card or project.  I pulled out a new Altenew stamp set and played around with coloring these daisies.  I wanted the daisies to be white, so I just added some shadowing with some gray Copic markers.  The centers are colored with two yellow Copic markers in a random, dot dot dot fashion.

To make the white daisies pop out, I adhered them to a Dapper Denim (a new SU color - love!!!) card.  When I first tried these daisies on a regular A2 card, they just overwhelmed the card.  These daisies are pretty large, and three of these on a normal card is just too much.  Soooo..... I went bigger!!!  LOL

My card base is 8 inches wide by 5 inches tall.  It's a piece of cardstock that is 8" by 10", folded at the 5" mark to make it 8" x 5".  The daisies seem much more at home on this size of card, and I was able to add the "smile" sentiment without covering up all the flowers.  I stamped the sentiment in a red color (Cherry Cobbler) because I wanted to have a red, white, and blue theme for my card for today's Memorial Day holiday.

Come play along with this week's CAS379 challenge.  We'd love to see what May flowers are blooming on your cards!  :-)