Tuesday, June 30, 2015

My 6th Blogoversary!

art © Robert Jackson
My Blogoversary is on July 5th, which will mark the 6th year of this blog & the 5th year of my becoming a serious cardmaker.

So many thanks to all my followers; I've known many of you for all my craft-blogging years, and have found such fun & support from our community. I now have over 200 followers, and I hope you'll join me if you haven't already (see the links on my sidebar.)

It's also time for my yearly Blog Candy! This year, I'm offering two sets of 3D stickers, three stamp sets, a set of plastic embellishments, and two Shake-It card templates (not pictured).

To win this pretty package, simply enter your info in the Linky below (I'll ship anywhere in the world) and stop by on July 6th to see if you're the lucky winner.

Thank you for visiting and for inspiring my crafting,

Sunday, June 28, 2015

Pilin' on the National Seaside

The theme this week at Pile It On is to Use your Nation's flag colors (as main colors; other colors are fine), and we're sponsored by A Day for Daisies. I used the freebie that ADFD offered this fortnight for its Piece or Pierce challenge. The card design was inspired by The Pink Elephant's Card Sketch Challenge.

The Shell Baby is printed on a water colored-patterned paper, and the big shell is pieced from one double-sided DP. I used papers from Graphic45 for the background. I love the kraken-patterned paper! The sentiment is from the same paper set. The white piece is cut from a mulberry paper & embossed with a border folder on my BigShot. I added a bit of blue distress ink on the bubbles.

I used a very thick foam to attach the image to the card: scrap foam weather-stripping, actually! The sentiment pieces & white background are popped with regular 3M foam tape. I machine-pierced the border and went over it with an awl to widen the holes. To embellish the card, I added some actual fish-netting & real sea-shells.

A Day for Daisies #124: Pierce or Piece + ADFD image
Craft It Up & Link It Up Linky Party by Craftin Desert Divas: Red, White, Blue
Crafty Creations: Red, White and/or Blue
Eureka Stamps #146: Paper Piecing
Jo's Scrap Shack: Red, White & Blue
The Pink Elephant Monday Card Challenge: Sketch
Ruby's Rainbow: At The Seaside

Update: This was chosen as a Top 5 for Eureka Stamps #46!

Thank you for visiting & inspiring my crafting! Hope you'll join us at Pile It On,

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Pilin' on the Summer Camp

The theme this week at Pile It On is Cultural/Family Traditions. Check out my other cards for this challenge here & here.

This time, I focused on a tradition I grew up with, which is roasting marshmallows over a campfire. It was a fun childhood experience: we'd go out and find proper marshmallow-roasting sticks, and then sit around a freshly-made fire & try not to burn our mouths too badly on the resulting S'mores. Personally, I liked to catch mine on fire...you get a show and a marshmallow crust! To create this scene, I used the Cricut's Campin' Critters Cartridge with Cricut Craftroom & my Cricut Expression.

I couldn't get the sentiment to cut correctly, so I used a Cricut marker instead. I then cut the shape around it, backed it with a black shadow layer, and filled in the letters with a black gel pen. Isn't this hedgehog(?) too cute I even used the funky eyes that come with the design, adding pupils with a black pen. I covered the marshmallow piece with a Marvy Snow Pen, which gave it a fun texture.

I used a Tim Holtz embossing folder to add the trees to the background. I inked the raised trees with a Copic marker. I distressed all the mattes with a nail file. I think you can guess why I chose the colors I did! I hope this will inspire you to share a custom or tradition with us at Pile It On!

Bitten by the Bug: Food + Cricut Cut
Fantabulous Cricut Challenge: Anything Cricut Goes

Thank you for visiting & inspiring my crafting! Hope you'll join us at Pile It On,

Pilin' on the Flamenco

The theme this week at Pile It On is Cultural/Family Traditions. We're sponsored by Ike's Art and I used her wonderful Spanish Dancer digi stamp. I grew up in Spain, so this reflects the culture I grew up with (although I live back in the States now):

I added some actual lace to the Flamenco dancer, something that artisans used to do on postcards in Spain. The tiny castanets were cut on my Silhouette with a file I created for my Castanets book.

Craft-Dee BowZ: Anything Goes with a Handmade Bow
Craftyhazelnut's Patterned Paper Challenge: Anything Goes with Patterned Paper (3rd entry)
Deconstructed Sketch: Sketch #204 (final challenge...you'll be missed!)

Check out my other cards for this challenge here & here.

Thank you for visiting & inspiring my crafting! Hope you'll join us at Pile It On,

Sunday, June 21, 2015

Cool Beans - Heroes at UnstampaBelles

Unstampabelles Challenges
The UnstampaBelles June challenge is to Create a mixed media item to celebrate your hero/ine. I couldn't resist making a project dedicated to people in my life that I truly consider heroic: my husband, who lived for 5 years with kidney disease and went to work every day, even when he had to go to dialysis every night; And my husband's living kidney donor, who gave us our future. The one-year anniversary of my husband's transplant is coming up (he's doing great!) so I made a memory box. For the decorative top, I used actual kidney beans:

I used a "windy road" template that I had previously created in SCAL, and cut it from a heavy white cardstock with my Cameo. I didn't have blue or green paint, so I made my own by mixing distress inks with white acrylic paint. It took many layers of paint to cover each section, but I like the artsy result. I had chosen black kidney beans because 1) the road is black so I wouldn't have to paint that section, 2) they were smaller than the red kidney beans, and 3) they were 20¢ cheaper than my other choice! I used good ol' Mod Podge to adhere the beans as well as to coat the final scene. I also sprayed it with a matte coating. I added decorative metal corners (from Martha Stewart; I sanded them a bit) and a gold trim to the final project.

I wanted to keep this project a secret from my husband until it was finished, which is why I bought the beans at the small store down the street, and why I couldn't tell him why we had to search for hinges last weekend (I wanted decorative ones, but my Michael's and Target didn't have any, so we finally went to Walmart!) I used my Dremel to affix the hinges to the two wood pieces. The box itself is made from the boxes wood veneer embellishments come in. They were already painted this blue, which I left as-is because it sorta reminds me of "hospital blue".

Of course, I completely forgot to get a front clasp for the box, so I had to get creative! I used knob-like screw fasteners (by Spare Parts) and a piece of a blue rubber tourniquet to make a whimsical closure:

For the inside, I simply sized some photos to fit in the existing sections. The top portion is a photo of the University of Maryland Medical Center, where our transplant adventure took place. I used Scrabble
® pieces to convey what we all felt there.

My mother-in-law is also a hero to me for donating a kidney to her brother 23 years ago. She's in the photos I used for the bottom section; I took out the actual faces for privacy reasons, except for the one of me & my wonderful husband leaving the hospital. I also used the first stanza from a poem by Emily Dickson, made into WordArt by Cec Wintonyk.

Illness is, sadly, a part of life, but so is bravery, hope, love, and sacrifice. There is no way that I can ever truly thank everyone who helped us, but I can spend my life trying. We're all in this Life together!

I'm entering this project into the following fabulous Challenges:
2 Creative Chicks #27: Anything Goes (no cards)
Altered Eclectics: Anything Goes (Altered Art/Mix Media only)
Card Mania #69: Use Metal Embellishments (2nd entry)

Be sure to check out the fabulous projects by my teamies and hope you'll join us this month at UnstampaBelles!

Thank you for visiting,