It’s not often you get asked to make three cards the same. In this case, my friend had some very special triplets that she wanted to send First Birthday Wishes to. You’ll see that fundamentally, the cards are all the same apart from one or two subtle differences the most obvious being the one for Arthur. I used unbranded dies for most of the elements on these cards. The Balloon alphabet dies were from The Works wit embroidery thread used for the balloon strings. The large numbers were cut using the Sizzix Bigz Sassy Serif Number dies.
Are any of you crafters out there like me? I buy craft magazines all the time, especially when I like the free gift. I have many of these free gifts that I’ve never used. They are all filed neatly in my stash. I bought the Simply Cards & Papercraft magazine Issue 208 a couple of weeks ago, I was drawn by the fab set of Autumn Days stamps that came free with it. This time I decided to have a play and see what I could do with them. I just love the tree stamps best of all but there are so many other lovely stamps in the set. If you look closely at the 4 leafy cards, you’ll see I used them in the background as well as for the focal arrangements. I stamped in clear versamark ink then heat embossed ising gold embossing powder. I got inky fingers blending in the autumnal colours for the backgrounds. I stamped lots of leaves and used watercolour markers to colour them in. Some of them were crying out for accenting with Glossy accents, it brought them to life and made the colours pop. I fussy cut the images then made various arrangements with them, finishing off with some die cut leaves, berries and sentiments. For the other cards I used the tree stamps to recreate a card I’ve made before with a similar stamp but this time the stamps were bigger and much better. I used post it notes and a home made acetate stencil to ink in the sky and ground before stamping the trees in black. I made them in pairs using alternative colours then die cut the Sun/moon from both at the same time and then swapped them over. I was originally intending just to make the sympathy cards but then thought of changing up the colours and adding some glitter and sparkle to make Christmas cards. I had very inky fingers but really enjoyed experimenting and have resolved to work my way through my other sets to see what I come up with. For full sized images and more details, just click on the pictures.
My friend’s Grandson was celebrating his 16th birthday and I had a request to make 2 Basketball themed cards, one from my friend and one from her daughter (his mum). I used the colours of his favourite team as the basis for both cards and although they are very similar, I used different dies for each of the cards and different style too. Foe details of the dies used for each card just click on any of the pictures and you’ll get the full sized view with all the information.
I’ve had a couple of friends celebrating Ruby wedding anniversaries this summer. Buying gifts under lockdown isn’t easy especially for the kind of people who already have everything, so I decided to make them a keepsake picture and co-ordinating cards. I even managed to stamp some bespoke wrapping paper too.
I have tended not to go for subscriptions to craft magazines and products. I did have a subscription to Simply Cards & Papercraft for a few years and enjoyed them arriving every month. I found, however, that the gifts/contents were not always to my taste and often got put away safely never to see the light of day. When Craftstash launched their new Papercraft Society Subscription Box I hesitated. The value of the contents is exceptional but I wasn’t sure I would like the themes/designs each month and so didn’t subscribe. Last month Craftstash offered 2 of their Papercraft Society Box back issues on a special trial offer. One the boxes was right up my street so I dived in and bought it. It was the June issue by Designer Olga Direktorenko and was music themed. Opening the box was like having Christmas come early it was packed with lots of amazing stamps, dies card stock and specialist papers (2 of each). In addition there were 3 mini hybrid ink pads in gorgeous colours, a pot of fine gold embossing powder, a pack of treble clef table confetti and an amazing double design embossing folder.
The pack came with a comprehensive guide full of amazing designs to get you off to a great start and tons of ‘how to’ tips and hints. I have had the best time ever playing with this kit. I started by copying some of the designs in the guide adding some little touches of my own here and there. Everything is so brilliantly co-ordinated to work seamlessly together and help you get the most professional look to the finished cards. I went off at a tangent after the first few cards and came up with a few designs of my own. Below you’ll find pictures of all the cards I managed to create during my play session with the kit. To view details of extras I used that weren’t included in the kit just click on the individual images.
If you read my previous post, you’ll know that my daughter celebrated her first wedding anniversary this June. I spent a long time creating a keepsake picture for her featured in the previous post. I then had to think about her card. I decided to go for a fun theme in complete contrast to the picture. We have a family tradition of having an ornamental garden frog or two. I bought a couple of frogs for my daughter and her hubby when they moved house a couple of years ago. Unfortunately the garden frogs got broken and I repaired them for her leading up to their anniversary. I decided to go all froggy for their anniversary card. I used one of Sam Calcott of Mixed Up Craft’s brilliant wiper card tutorials and made a couple of adjustments to make this fun card. If you scroll down you’ll see the frogs that were the inspiration for this before, during and after their repair, re-paint and safe return to the garden.
My eldest daughter celebrated her first wedding anniversary this June. The wedding was at an olive estate in the Tuscan hills of Italy. my daughter managed to save some of the flowers from her bouquet, along with her husband’s buttonhole, in the hope that we would be able to press them. I decided to make a picture using the pressed flowers as a present for their first anniversary. My daughter had two lockets in her bouquet with photographs of her late grandparents and she wanted these including. I had saved the fabric trimmings from her dress alterations and thought I could use those in some way to form part of the picture too. So, I gathered everything together and started playing around with ideas for a layout. I used the dress fabric scraps to create a miniature version of my daughter’s wedding dress. The flowers, which were originally all white, had all yellowed significantly and I struggled to make an arrangement with them that was pleasing to the eye on a plain background. Eventually I decided on a split layout using the dress on one half and the flowers on the other half. I created a frame around the dress to separate it from the flowers in case they reacted together. I used slightly faded out photographs from the wedding as backgrounds which looked much better than a plain background. Arranging the flowers and foliage was quite challenging as most of them only had very short stems. I tried numerous combinations but they just looked like a pile of dead flowers. Eventually I hit on the idea of using nesting rectangles of card to layer up the flowers which looked much better and the groom’s buttonhole fit perfectly in centre. And here is the finished result. My daughter was delighted. It may not stunningly beautiful but it’s an authentic keepsake with all original contents from the actual day and all are now preserved in a box frame and should keep safely for years to come. If you scroll down you’ll see pictures showing the various stages of putting this together.
I’ve been a member of Craftworld for quite a few months now and recently upgraded to premium membership. One of the benefits of being premium is regular free downloads of Digi Stamps and 10 o/0 off all Craftstash purchases. I have to say, apart from Craft Artist Software, I’ve never really bought into the idea of digi stamps but I am learning fast. I took my time downloading the files and organising them so I can find what I want and have now had a day or two to play. Here’s what I came up with. I started by making two digital layouts for click & print cards as playing digitally didn’t involved wasting any card or other supplies. I kept things simple but am quite pleased with the results. Feeling a little more confident I ventured into print, selecting first the images I wanted to use and then Sizing them to what I felt would be appropriate. I printed the images and coloured them with Prisma brush pen watercolour markers (a new acquisition). I learned quickly that watercolour markers are not the best medium for colouring inkjet printed images as the ink can smudge. Still, I’d started so I finished, taking care not to get things too muddy. After some fussy cutting I had two lovely summer themed cards. think I could get used to using these. I love that you can resize the images to suit your project and will explore other colouring mediums.