Friday, April 15, 2011

Four Ways Friday #45 - Charming Stamp Set

For this week's Four Ways Friday, I closed my eyes, reached onto the stamp shelf, and pulled out the Charming stamp set!  Sometimes chance is the greatest inspiration!
Small, decorative stamps lend themselves really well to making background papers!  Here I used the small decorative stamp from the Charming set and stamped it multiple times in Marina Mist, Early Espresso, Pretty In Pink, Pink Pirouette and Rose Red onto Very Vanilla card stock.  I then crumpled the paper and sprayed it with  a mixture of alcohol and champagne shimmer paint in a spray bottle.  I sewed the panel to a Pink Pirouette background and then sewed those layers to the Marina Mist card.  I stamped the greeting from Thank You Kindly with Early Espresso on Pink Pirouette card stock.  I then sewed around and around with the sewing machine.  I added the panel to the card with dimensionals and then added the Rose Red button with the tied crochet thread using glue dots.

It can be easy, at times, to overlook the beauty and simplicity of ink and paper alone.  Here I used sticky notes to create a mask around a central square of space and then stamped everything inside the masked area - the words, the butterfly, the flowers, the flourish frame - all using Basic Gray ink on Whisper White card stock.  I stamped "create" on a small piece of Whisper White card stock, cut it out and mounted it on the card with dimensionals.  I added the tiniest touch of dazzling diamonds to the flower centers.
The floral image in this stamp set is so elegant!  Here inked the stamp, multiple times, using my Rich Razzleberry and Old Olive markers.  I stamped the image 4 times on the card and then added dazzling diamonds to the flowers using 2-way glue.  I stamped the flourish frame and the greeting from Short & Sweet onto Whisper White card stock and punched it out with the extra large oval punch.  I sponged the edges with Rich Razzleberry ink and then added it to the card front with dimensionals.
This card began with Natural Ivory card stock as the base.  I then stamped the circular decorative image with VersaMark using my stamp-a-ma-jig.  I heat embossed with white embossing powder and repeated the stamping and embossing two more times.  I added rhinestone jewels to the centers of the embossed images.  The sewing came next - a bit of back and forth with two different sized stitches.  Finally, I stamped the greeting from Curly Cute using Early Espresso ink.  Here is a close up of the embossing.
I hope you've enjoyed this week's Four Ways Friday!  I hope I've inspired you to look at the Charming stamp set in some new ways!!!!  Have a wonderfully creative weekend!

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Fifth Avenue Floral Monogram Notes

Today's Lesson From The Craft Room:  What Ever Led Us To Believe That We Own This Planet?
I just finished reading the book Ishmael by Daniel Quinn and my brain has been swimming in thought from the book.  Have you read it?  I don't want to share too much since it is definitely worth reading and considering.  The book spends time discussing how we seem to believe that the world belongs to us - that it's our possession.  It's a strange thing to think about - owning the world.  And even more strange to watch how we can treat something once we begin to convince ourselves that it is ours to do with as we please.  I get discouraged when I contemplate my contribution to damaging this gorgeous planet and I keep trying to do things to minimize the negative impact that I make on this planet - composting, recycling, reusing, being a vegetarian.  I know there is more I can do.  There are so many things each and every one of us can do to slow the damage...or maybe even reduce the damage...that our attitude of ownership has caused to this beautiful planet.  What can you do today?
Today's card is one of a set that I made for my mom for her birthday.  Yesterday I shared a few of the occasion cards that I included in the set.  I decided that some general monogram note cards would also be a great addition to the set.  I used the "E" from the Classic Alphabet (retired) for the monogram.  I find this combination of Baja Breeze, Pink Pirouette, and Sahara Sand amazingly soothing.  I might have to put this color combination on my list of favorites! :)  I hope you like it!

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Fifth Avenue Floral Birthday Card

Today's Lesson From The Craft Room:  Art Is My String!
I can't remember if I've told you this story before.  If I have, it's always good to hear again...and there's a good chance I'll tell it again in a matter of months from now!  I read once that back in the day, on the Great Plains, farmers learned to tie a string from the back door to the door of the barn because each farmer knew at least one person who had died in a snowstorm when they couldn't find their way back to shelter.  The storms would be so intense that they couldn't see and they would lose their way between the buildings.  By tying that string between the buildings, they were able to find their way in the storm.  Art is my string!  When days feel like blizzards; when my emotions are going every which way but a happy and supportive way, art helps me find my way back to center.  If I'm in a bad mood, I can go into the craft room and create for a bit and the storm blows over and the calm moves in.  I hope you have a string that helps you find your way - whether it is art or another passion - we all need our strings :)
Today's card is part of a set that I made for my mom as part of a birthday gift.  I stamped the flowers from Fifth Avenue Floral and one from Eastern Blooms in Pink Pirouette, Baja Breeze and Sahara Sand.  I added a touch of dazzling diamonds to the flower centers.  I adhered a piece of textured Sahara Sand card stock and then sewed across it with the sewing machine (yes, I'm addicted to sewing on cards now!).  I used VersaMark and Early Espresso ink to heat emboss the Sincere Salutations greeting onto Pink Pirouette card stock.  I then punched it out using the decorative label punch.  I hope you like it!  Here are a few simplified versions of the card...

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Always Monogram Note Cards

Today's Lesson From The Craft Room:  Your Experience Influences How You See The World...And Then You Need To Decide What To Do With That
I just finished reading a book called "Little Bee" by Chris Cleave.  It is an incredibly powerful book and the main character has an amazing story to tell (I won't tell you too much since it's a great book and you might want to read it).  I was struck by how much her experience influenced how she saw the world.  I realize the same is true for me.  I was assaulted when I was 16 years old and that influenced, then and now, how I see the world.  At first I walked around in absolute fear - fear that it would happen again - fear that I would be followed - fear that this time, it would be worse.  It has taken me years to begin to think about what I want to do with that fear and that experience.  Yes, I am still very aware of my surroundings and I do wonder what danger lurks around every corner.  I'm just not sure I want to continue to hold onto the experience in the same way anymore.  Yes, I still want to be aware of what's around me and be prudent in my actions.  I don't, however, want to view every person walking in my direction or behind me as a potential threat - it is just not energy I want to carry around every day - it is weighing me down.  I am not sure how I will go about changing the influence this event has had on my life.  I guess awareness is the first step - awareness that I want to change how it influences my life.  Wish me luck!
Today's card is actually a set of cards that I made for a friend for her birthday.  Once again the Color Coach came in handy - I love how these colors go together!  Elegant Eggplant, More Mustard and Garden Green...who would have thought?! :)  I began by stamping the bird from Always using VersaMark and Elegant Eggplant (you can make any of your classic inks "heat embossable" if you stamp your stamp in VersaMark first and then onto the ink pad color of your choice - this will not hurt your ink pads).  I heat embossed with clear embossing powder.  I punched the curly label out of More Mustard card stock and stamped the branch image in More Mustard.  I then sewed that piece to the card using my sewing machine.  I stamped the monogram from the Classic Alphabet (retired) in Elegant Eggplant on Whisper White card stock and punched it out with the 3/4" circle punch.  I then stamped the flower at half strength using More Mustard ink.  A 1" circle was then punched from Garden Green cardstock.  I adhered the monogram to the Garden Green circle using glue and then adhered it to the card using a dimensional.  Here is a close up of the stamping on the card:

Monday, April 11, 2011

One Stamp Wonders #1 - A Note of Thanks & Video!!!!

Today's Lesson From The Craft Room:  What If You Only Had One Stamp?
This is the question that led me to begin a new series of videos called One Stamp Wonders!  What if you only had one rubber stamp to play with?  What could you do?  This question led me to start looking at other items in the craft room in new and interesting ways.  This is the first card and the first video in the series.  I hope you like it and I hope it challenges you to ask yourself, "What would I do if I only had one stamp to stamp with?"  Enjoy!