Saturday, September 26, 2020

Autumn Gratitude Mice Card

 This card started with the cutest Stampendous 'cling acorn stamp'.  I just couldn't wait to ink it up.  On my craft desk, I had some wispy green washi paper and coarse washi paper with small leaf inclusions and lots of foxing. I wet the edges of the green washi with water before tearing the edges.  This gave it a nice frayed look.  Next, I used the Brenda Walton oak leaf die to cut out a shape from the coarse (badly foxed) washi paper.  With dark brown Memento ink I stamped the mice image onto the die cut oak leaf.  After coloring in the mice and acorns with Copic pens, I rubbed Range Distress Oxide ink onto the edges of the leaf before spraying and blotting with water.  The leaf was crinkled to look more realistic.  The edges of the burlap ribbon were trimmed off and the ribbon was frayed before gluing it onto the card which already had the green washi glued down.  (I used 3 in 1 Beacon glue.)  The die cut oval wreath (Whimsy) was glued down too before adding the oak leaf with the stamped mice image.  Next, the artificial leaves were glued down before the stamped and gold heat embossed 'Gratitude' was added.  Most of the supplies were and most likely still can be purchased at HM Ben Franklin Crafts except for the Whimsy die and Stampendous stamp.  Oh yes, don't forget to flick gold Liquitex ink on the finished card.  I have GRATITUDE for the fact that I am able to make an autumn card even though I've never lived in a place with a real autumn season and real fall leaves.  I do believe that mice play with acorn caps...don't you?

Tuesday, September 22, 2020

Hedgehog Calendar Mini Box

As soon as my Vippies calendars arrived, I started thinking of ways to use them.  Then I got the  Lawn Fawn hedgehog dies for decorating the tiny gift box (a separate die set). I had planned to attach the calendars to the box but they were just a bit too big (even the smallest size).  
By attaching a circle of printed card stock I was able to create a nice backdrop as well as a place for the calendar.
I was happy to have a space for a thoughtful message too. This one was on a wood handled Penny Black stamp.
Here's how the box opens up.  Besides the cute face, I love that the die cut the fur texture.  Did you know that  some real hedgehogs are quite small and have soft fur?  
When I make mini calendars, I usually do them in sets of four or five (or I get bored).  These would be cute for office workers (even those working from home) and could hold fancy paper clips. (I found some squirrel shaped ones.)  However, as a chocolate lover, I suggest putting chocolate kisses in them!


Friday, September 18, 2020


At first when I purchased the Lawn Fawn stamp and die sets, I planned to use them for borders on my cards, but then I realized that they would be just right for mini tuck-in cards (the type that you enclose with a gift so it won't get separated from the gift).  Starting with DCWV or AC card/envelope sets, I planned out the arrangement of the designs adding washi tape (some from Daiso) where needed.  I colored the stamped designs with Copic pens, die cut them and added sprinkles where appropriate.  These cards were so easily made that I even decorated the envelopes.  Giving a set of these cards would be a great 'something-something' gift, too.  If your friend is crafty, you could give her a gift of some mini cards and the parts to decorate them.  Enjoy the last days of summer doing something you love . . CRAFTING!



Wednesday, September 16, 2020

Mini Decorated Brownie Cupcakes for the Holidays

 As the holiday season approaches, I've begun thinking about home baked goodies to give as gifts.  I found this wonderful Wilton non-stick heavy duty muffin tin that can bake 24 mini cupcakes at one time. It was sold at HM Ben Franklin Crafts.  This whole tray can accommodate the batter that would normally make one 8x8  pan of brownies.  I used paper liner cups because I think it is easier to eat cupcakes this way.  However, if no liners were used the cupcakes would still come out of the pan easily.  For the decoration on top, I put a crumbled coconut/pumpkin seed snack on eight, M&M candies on the the middle eight, and shelled pistachio nuts on the last third.  This way I can give assorted treat bags to friends.  For Xmas, I'm thinking of putting crushed candy canes on some, white chocolate chips on others and perhaps half a green candied cherry on each of the rest of the brownie cupcakes.  It's amazing how just one purchase can stimulate a whole season of delicious baking.  Brownies are my favorite sweet treat. What's yours? 

Monday, September 14, 2020

Summer Fun Fair Card

 Here is the second card I made using the Lawn Fawn 'Coaster Critters' stamp and die sets.  Remember, I had extra stamped and colored parts leftover from the first card?  I decided not to make the interactive part, but in hindsight I think I miss the moving parts.  I do like the little ticket stand I included in this card layout.  The stamped word background and sentiment along with the colorful acrylic dots help to make this card more active.  In any case, this card is a nice addition to my stash of birthday cards....maybe for a September birthday....remember when we used to have State Fairs in the fall?  Hopefully, we will have them again.

Thursday, September 10, 2020

Birthday Present from a Cat

 This slimline birthday card is for a guy who is a two cat owner and is responsible for their litter box.  I discovered from my last shaker card that it is easier to die cut the foam sheet if you glue it to card stock first. ( The foam sheet won't warp when run through the Big Shot machine.)  I made two card stock/foam pieces and die cut them using the Whimsy marquee frame.  Those two pieces were glued together.  I also die cut the black and white printed word front piece.
 I glued a piece of acetate behind the black and white print front. To enclose the cavities I glued a plain piece of card stock behind the card.  Dotted paper was cut with the die and the words were stamped on them before they were glued into the cavities.
 The Whimsy cats and litter box were stamped on marker paper and colored in with Copic pens.  I didn't make the cats more colorful because the birthday person's  cats are all grey.
 The cats and litter box were fussy cut and glued onto the card front.  Next the Queen and Co. Toppings Pop pieces were filled into the cavities before the front piece was glued into place.  This card looks difficult to make but it was really easily completed in a couple of hours.  I think the cat loving birthday guy will like the funny card. Do you?

Sunday, September 6, 2020

Cat Puzzle Birthday Card

 I love making puzzle cards using the Pink & Main puzzle die.  I hope my son doesn't get frustrated with this puzzle. (It's only 35 pieces.)  Because he has two cats in his household, I usually incorporate cats into his birthday cards. The big cat with glasses (Brutus/Monroe me of his cat) was stamped (with waterproof ink) onto medium weight watercolor paper.  Then I stamped the cat onto a piece of sticker paper to make a mask which will protect cat image when applying Hero Arts reactive dye.  I stamped the words and paw prints before adding the ink and spraying/splashing with water.  After removing the mask paper from the cat image, I colored in the cat with Copic pens, but I should have waited until the paper was dry because there was some ink bleeding. I flicked on some Liquitex gold ink to add more interest to the background. (The black specks were some paper pieces that somehow got into the photo...happily they are not permanent.)
The back puzzle was made by stamping the Whimsy cats and words onto a piece of printed card stock.  Then the image was colored in and the card stock piece was adhered to the front image using double stick tape.  The back to back images were then run through my Big Shot die cutting machine using the puzzle die.  I ran the card several times to be sure I got a clean cut. Next, I made a frame (see bottom photo) from black card stock (three layers on top and one for the bottom).  This frame should help my son contain the pieces while assembling the puzzles. I really hope my son is amused by this puzzle birthday card and doesn't toss it aside as a waste of time.  To be sure he can at least see the images and read the words, I am including a cheat sheet (photographs of assembled puzzles).  LOL!

Wednesday, September 2, 2020

Super Father's Day Card

 I'm still obsessed with the comic book style of cards. This one was easily made with the use of  dies, comic book stamps, and graphic Whimsy paper.  A flaw made applying star stickers necessary, but I think I like it better this happy accidents! ( I was never a super hero comic reader. I gravitated to Archie and Casper comics books LOL! )

 Anyway, I made this Father's Day card for my husband because he really is a SUPER father.  He somehow manages to get everything done despite all the demands for his time over the years.  During this pandemic time at home he has sorted through a ton of junk that has accumulated over nearly 30 years in this house.  Now he is dividing up the children's books and baby items for our grandsons.  This is a big job that only a loving father would tackle.  I remember him reading to our sons and falling asleep before the boys.  He was so tired but determined to be a good father.  Today my sons listen to their Dad's wise advice and want to be just like DAD!  Happy belated Father's Day to all  great dads!

Saturday, August 29, 2020

Herorine Comic Birthday Card

  I love the new line of Whimsy comic book style of stamps, dies, and papers. Using them, it is super simple to put together clever and eye-catching cards.  As you can tell I laid the blue card on top of the inside of the yellow card and vice versa.
 I used black ink and Nuvo black sparkle heat embossing powder on all the stamped images and words. I like sparkles...heeheehee!  Copic pens were used for coloring. Star stickers and sequins were applied for more...ah...sparkles!  Just for more sparkle bling, I flecked on Liquitex metallic inks.  Click on the photos if you can't read the words because ......You're Old!!!!!

Tuesday, August 25, 2020

Glamour Girl Vintage Filmstrip Birthday Card

 These new Whimsy products barely got to my craftroom before I inked them up and ran them through my die cutting machine.  I love the vintage images and cool sayings. Having matching dies is certainly a time saver.  I used a stencil brush and some stamping ink to color in the dot stencil but found it time consuming.  Maybe I need a bigger stencil brush or perhaps a fine mist ink spray. My friends with a sense of humor will enjoy this type of birthday card.  We are all beyond the age of caring how old others think we are.  Just Staying Alive.... Staying Alive....LOL!

Friday, August 21, 2020

Jade Pendants on Cords and Chains

 Just showing what I've been working on while keeping one eye on the TV.  About 10 years ago we toured China and of course I picked up some carved jade pieces. Well, I've finally started using them to make some jewelry.  It only took a once in a hundred year pandemic to give me the time and desire to create something...LOL!  Anyway, the top left piece was a simple one which just required fastening the jade to a pre-tied decorative cord necklace.  The one on the right has an adjustable silk cord necklace and wire wrapping to attach the jade piece and pearl.

These four pendants on chains were fashioned from fancy gold vermeil headpins that were wire-wrapped to attach pearls and form bails. These jade necklaces are simple to make which is why I can create them in front of the boob tube. They will be given as gifts or may appear for sale in My Locker at the Hilo HM Ben Franklin Crafts.  Thanks for reading this post and please leave a comment if you have a few minutes to spare. I enjoy hearing from you!  

Monday, August 17, 2020

Japanese Paper Card Making Kit

 I know that this photo doesn't show the kit to the best advantage, but I wanted you to see the interior of the box that began as a Japanese mini cake gift box.  Usually, I just paper the outside of boxes I want to up-cycle, but as you might be able to see from the inside of the box bottom, the sides of the box fold in making the box sturdier.  I discovered by unfolding the top of the box, it became a flat piece which I could easily cover with washi paper.  I used double sided tape and a little glue to get a good adhesion before refolding the box top. It was easy and looks very neat. Even my husband who scoffs at all the gift boxes I save (to re-purpose) had to admit that this was a worthwhile recycling go ahead and save those gift boxes...LOL!
 Here are all the card parts unpacked from the cello bags (available at HM Ben Franklin Crafts).  The printed washi papers were cut with the largest die in the Lawn Fawn die set, 'stitched rectangle stackables'.  The envelopes and card blanks were from my stash...amazing what can be found under all the clutter!  I made some of the labels by stamping Japanese characters and heat embossing before die cutting with the smallest die from the LF set. ( I used copper ink and brass embossing powder.)  The assorted stickers were discovered in an overflowing box of hoarded Japanese paper items.  I am also including some Heiko double stick tape in the card kit because it is my favorite adhesive.
This is how I am presenting the card kit gift to one of my favorite girlfriends.  I made the card too so she can see how easy it is to create a card using the contents of this kit.  I am also suggesting if she wants a more abstract look she can wet the edges of the printed washi rectangle and gently tear to create a deckle edge. The turquoise paper raffia-like cording is available at Celebrations and perhaps HM BFC. I hope this gift idea has inspired you to think of making a card kit for a special friend.  You'll have fun assembling the parts and she'll enjoy being a creative card maker.  Remember: Save those boxes!

Thursday, August 13, 2020

Mermaid Dreams Shaker Card

                          The ocean is a busy place
                          Full of wondrous things,
                          But in the deep blue-green sea
                          Is where mermaids go to dream,
                          Their special secret dreams. 
                                                            L. K.

Because it is summer, I wanted to do an underwater card.  The wave die by Whimsy gave me a a base for this shaker card.  To make deeper wells for the shaky stuff, I cut two foam sheets. These were glued together and topped with a card stock die cut piece. An acetate rectangle went between the die cut card stock layer and the foam ones. A card stock rectangle was used to back the piece and two different printed card stocks (from a Whimsy 6x6 pack) were cut with the die to fill in the windows.  Before sealing in the windows, sequins were added to the wells.  Be careful not to put in too many or your card will be super busy like mine....LOL!  The little sea creatures, mermaid, and seaweed were stamped, colored in with Copic pens, coated with Glossy Accents, and fussy cut out before gluing down.
 The mermaid, of course, is my favorite part of the card. I love how the tiny sequins made perfect scales for her.  She is lying on a sand bar that was enhanced by Hero Arts sand embossing powder.  The words for this card were from the Whimsy stamp set, stamped in white ink and heat embossed with white detail powder onto blue card stock which was then hand cut and glued down.  Oh yes, I added some acrylic bubble dots to make the card even more...uh, exciting!  More bling is more bling right?

Sunday, August 9, 2020

Japanese Paper Sample Cards

 These two cards were inspired by free sample cards I received from a vendor at a trade show years ago.  I didn't use the samples to make anything but I always intended to...hehehe!  Anyway, while sorting out my hoarded Japanese washi (embarrassingly large) stash, I had a light bulb moment and set out to make these cards.  First, I selected six paper swatches for each card and put the stiffest paper at the bottom.  Each sheet was dampened on the bottom edge before tearing to achieve the deckled edge.
Next the sheets were layered, trimmed and tacked at the top edges so that most of each sheet was free floating. This way the card recipient can tear off the papers to use on a project of her own.
 The words (Hero Arts) and Japanese characters (Mari and Me) were stamped on the cards using metallic inks before heat embossing with metallic powders  My wooden stamps are vintage and probably difficult to find, but you can discover lots of great ones at HM Ben Franklin Crafts. Make a paper sample card and give it to a crafter who might enjoy making a card using the washi paper sheets from your card....that's recycling!

Wednesday, August 5, 2020

Sweet Summer Card

I like this new Blogger format even though the photos are gigantic....good for showing details but magnifies imperfections. LOL!  Anyway, I'm not sure why I like ant images, but these Whimsy and Lawn Fawn ones were so cute. (I once ate ants that were covering a chocolate covered doughnut...ewwww! Also I was at one time plagued by fire ants who somehow nested in my toilet...painful! So why do I still think ants are cute?) I created this card to use the images and to try out the new LF pivoting pop-up die.  I had to watch the Lawn Fawn video several times before I understood the mechanics of this unique paper gizmo.  The card was further inspired by the lovely fruit patterned paper by Bella Blvd.  My favorite part of this card (besides the awesome pivoting part) is the watermelon seeds on the front.  I thought long and hard on how to create them without applying wet black dimensional paint...a recipe for disaster on an almost finished card.  Finally, I came up with the idea of squirting some Glossy Accent onto black paper and using a pin to drag out a point on each seed.  After the seeds were dry, I cut them out and glued them down. Eureka!..fake watermelon seeds!  Well, that's all for today.  Be nice and you'll have a nice day!

Saturday, August 1, 2020

Sunny Days Ahead Card

Here is a shaker summer card I made to send hope for better un-virus days to come.  I wanted to use cheerful colors so I started with some Hero Arts reactive dye pads.  I smeared them on watercolor paper and then sprayed water on the paper.  When the colors blended as desired, I blotted the excess water.  To add a more water-splashed look I sprinkled on some water droplets, waited a few seconds and then blotted them up. After letting the dyed paper dry completely, I used the Whimsy frame die to cut out the windows, saving the inside pieces. A piece of acetate was glued behind the dyed watercolor paper frame.  
 I glued a thin foam sheet to a piece of card stock and cut out two more frames.  The two frames were glued together to make the wells that would hold the shaker pieces.  The cute 'My Favorite Things' images were stamped, colored with Copic pens, and either die cut or fussy cut out. The images were glued to the front of the card and the window pieces were glued in.
 Before gluing the top of the card down, some unicorn sequins (from HM BFC), Queen and Co. 'diamonds' and 'sugar' were added into the recessed areas.  This card makes me happy which was the reason for its construction. Hopefully, it will help lift the spirits of its recipient. I am sending you sunny smiles too, via my blog. Enjoy! (If you have time to spare, I would love a sunny comment from you.)