Sunday, June 30, 2013

Simply Bling

This week at Pile It On, we're all about BLING. Our sponsor is Floppy Latte Digital Designs, and the winner will receive a $6 coupon to FLD; $10 if the winner used an FLD image. I just adore her images; they work as well as outlines as in full color.

I used Flowers in a Glass by Floppy Latte Digital Designs:

I couldn't quite capture it with a photo, but the vase is painted with Crackle Accents (from the same company that does Glossy Accents), which gives it a porcelain effect. The flowers were colored with Sakura glaze pens and Smooch pearlized inks.

I used Flower Soft and wrapped wire to make these tall white flowers. I'm not sure if they exist in nature, but they popped into my head when I saw this image.I colored the wire with a Copic to give it a green base.

I was inspired by this week's Monday Lunchtime Sketch at Technostamper, although I adapted it for a "tall" card. Technostamper is a Stampin' Up! site, and even though you aren't required to use SU! products, I did use their Whisper White paper & classic ink.

I stamped a lace design by Kaisercraft directly onto the background in the SU! white ink, and heat-embossed it with a mixture of white embossing powder and Prisma glitter. I didn't know that I could just add glitter to embossing powder, it worked great. Now I need to stock up on tiny plastic containers...!

The sentiment is from Prickley Pear's Clearly Beautiful Cardinal set. It's inked in green onto a scallop die cut (a•muse studio), and framed with an adhesive gemstone circle (Recollections).

Technostamper #269
Addicted to Stamps Challenge: Lace
A.R.T. Card Challenge: Anything Goes (2nd entry)
Creative Card Crew #39: No Designer Paper
Divas by Design: Pearls
Nutcrafters: Texture
Simon Says Stamp: Anything Goes (2nd entry)
Technostamper Challenge: Sketch #269
That Craft Place: Flowers
Tuesday Throwdown #153: Glitz & Glimmer
WordArt Wednesdays: Anything goes + encouraging/uplifting sentiment

PS: Check out my 4th Blogoversary Blog Candy, through July 9.
Thank you for visiting, and hope you'll join us this week at Pile It On,

A little birdhouse in your Soul

This week at One Stitch at a Time (OSAAT), it's Anything Goes! I used Bird House by My Heart Pieces:

click to enlarge

For the sentiment, I used the chorus from They Might Be Giants' classic song "Birdhouse in Your Soul". I don't know, I just really like that song! I cut it out with a Spellbinders die and added some blue Liquid Pearls.

The house and birds are decoupaged, with the layers popped up with foam tape. I colored everything with Copics, and used blue Sparkly Fluff for the birds' hair.

The "fence" and
blue background are made from Core'Dinations two-tone cardstocks and embossed with Cuttlebug folders. They were lightly sanded to bring out the core colors. I added some "nails" with a Viva Pearl Pen.

Challenge #13
The Craft Garden
A Die for a Sketch Challenge #13: Sketch + at least 1 die cut
A.R.T. Card Challenge: Anything Goes (1st entry)
Crafting By Designs: Anything Goes
Pollycraft Challenges: Anything goes
Ruby's Rainbow #57: Things with Wings
Simon Says Stamp: Anything Goes (1st entry)
Sandy's Crafty Creations: Embossed backgrounds
Scrap It Girl's June Challenge: Use your dies
The Craft Garden: Color Palette (I know my shades are different from the photo, but I was very much inspired by the colors)

PS: Check out my 4th Blogoversary Blog Candy, through July 9.

PSS: You can now Follow my blog with Bloglovin.

Here's the video for They Might Be Giants' classic:

Thank you for visiting, and, while you're at it, keep the nightlight on inside the birdhouse in your soul,

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Rooster of Freedom

We live in a neighborhood in North Baltimore City, and although it is mostly quiet, residential community, it definitely has a "city" vibe. So the arrival of a rooster, who makes his presence known starting at about 4:30AM, has been the source of some local excitement. Like many U.S. cities, Baltimore has loosened its agriculture laws recently in response to fresh-food efforts and increased understanding of safe livestock handling. The woman who takes care of our dogs & iguana while we travel lives just a bit north of us and keeps several chickens in her relatively-small backyard. I think this practice is still common in many parts of the world, but it's not a familiar sight around here. Yet!

So far, no one's saying who the rooster belongs to... Which is mostly fine with me, since I'm sure some people aren't as smitten with him as I am, except that he gets out & about. Three kids followed him into our yard last week; we live on a corner, so I tend to tune out street sounds, but you can't ignore a child's cries of "Catch that chicken!" They pointed out the rooster under the bushes in our front yard, and, after convincing them that I did not, in fact, need them to catch the chicken for me, the little guy made a run for it with the kids hot on its trail. I'm assuming they all had a great time, because every child should get to chase a chicken at some point, and Mr Rooster was back on duty the next morning. But I did wish I could call the owner and let them know. My husband, however, is convinced that it's just a loose street-rooster. Which is also fine with me, because if you can survive the Baltimore Rats, you can survive anything.

Just to round off this long story, I'd like to note that I always think of the Portuguese legend of the Rooster of Barcelos, and that whenever I hear a rooster crow some part of me thinks, "An innocent man has gone free."

Anyway, I feel like this rooster has become the unofficial mascot of our neighborhood, so when I saw the freebie at A Day for Daisies, I just had to use it!

I printed the digi twice: once on fabric, and once on plain paper. I used a blue thread to stitch the outline; I think it came out pretty well, considering I've never done this before. I wanted to add some color, so I colored the plain paper piece and placed the material directly on top of it. I adhered the fabric onto the paper by running the paper through my sticker machine.

The gold "frame" is actually a Rolo wrapper; my husband saved it for me, and it was perfect for this project. I just glued the fabric-covered piece onto the square wrapper and folded over the corners.

The papers are from a Tim Holtz paper pad set. I cut the doily with the "Flower" Mini Lucky 8 Punch from We R Memory Keepers. The sentiment stamp is from a Crafters Companion/Beatrix Potter set, and is stamped in a bright blue on manila paper. I added a bit of Antique Linen distress ink, and put it in the metal frame and attached it to the card with the brads. The card was finished with some Dry Wall tape and adhesive gem flourishes.

A Day for Daisies Challenge #72: Nature + ADFD digi (thank you Tammy for this great freebie!)
Craftin Desert Divas: On the Farm
Delicious Doodles Challenge #41: Stitch it!
The Paper Nest Dolls Challenge: Animals
Paper Playtime: Red, White & Blue
Seems a Little Sketchy: Sketch

PS: Check out my 4th Blogoversary Blog Candy, through July 9.
Thank you for visiting,

Sunday, June 23, 2013

4th Blogoversary - Candy Time!

On July 9, 2009, I started this blog with a post about homemade cheese, and now blogging is a huge part of my life. I don't make cheese much anymore, but I've gotten so much out of the craftosphere. To thank you all for inspiring me over the years, I'm offering a few Blog Candies!

My mom was recently asked to distribute the crafting supplies of a neighbor who passed away; She sent me lots of those goodies, to share with my crafting friends. All items are new and unused.

I'm not going to ask you to become a follower of my blog or post my Candy on your sidebar, but please feel free to do both! Here's a preview of the 5 separate candies:

Please note that I'm only offering some of my Candy to U.S. addresses (including APO / FPO); so sorry, but there's some heavy stuff and my budget is limited. If you have a U.S. address where you can ship things, that's fine too.

It goes without saying that this is all for personal use; no resale!

You can enter as many of the candies as you like, as long you follow the address restrictions. You don't need a blog to enter (just leave that section empty), but if you do have a blog, please link it up so I can pop over and say hello.

Candy #1 - Embellishment Delight
International addresses OK
An assortment of bright, metal charms
Heart-shaped buttons
Mini frame

Candy #2 - Christmas in July
International addresses OK
Clay Button set
Clay Pin set
New Year's-themed hanging embellishments
2 metal-edged, Christmas-themed paper tags
"Happy Holidays" Ribbon

Candy #3 - Crafter's Delight
U.S. addresses Only

4 sets of hanging buttons in different colors with letters
1 set of white hanging buttons with numbers
2 big bags of Craft Thread (perfect for summertime projects!)

Candy #4 - Scrapper's Delight
U.S. addresses Only
7 sets of Chipboard Words
2 sets of Quotes
A set of family-themed metal die cuts
A set of family-themed, clear stickers

Candy #5 - Fabulous Letters
U.S. addresses Only
6 sets of clear plastic letters in different colors; 3 of each letter in each set
2 different sets of letter-stamped, metal pieces
Note: You can color these with markers, and even heat-emboss the metal pieces!

This giveaway is now closed; many thanks to everyone who entered! The winners have been posted here.

Thank you for visiting,

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Super Dad...on the road

I was thousand of miles of away from my dad for Father's Day (my folks travel every summer), but we spent a lovely day with my father-in-law. We went to an East Coast favorite, Silver Diner; the food is so fresh and delicious, and of course the company was great!

I made him this card using a KennyK image, a CTMH paper, and the last of my cityscape die cuts:

Funny story about the CTMH map-patterned paper: by pure coincidence, it's a map of the Bethesda, Maryland area, where is where my FIL lives! He noticed immediately, and we all had a laugh about it.

The cityscape is heat-embossed in Kaleidoscope/glitter powder. I inked the pieces with SU! Barely Banana. The ribbons were both purchased at CYDI.

I used the opposite side of the CTMH paper for the inside, and added a simple pop-up message:

The sentiment reads "Any man can be a father, but it takes someone special to be a Dad," and is by Paper Makeup.

CAS-ual Fridays #105: "Mapquest" (I know this is on the edge of CAS, but it's about as CAS as I get!)
Catered Crop: Masculine Card
There She Goes: Anything Goes

Thank you for visiting, and best to you & yours,

Monday, June 17, 2013

Super Baby

I'm an only child, but thanks to my husband's 3 fabulous siblings, we're up to 7 nephews & nieces (with one on the way)! Our newest nephew arrived just last week, and I sure had fun putting together the baby gift.

I've reconnected with a crafty friend from High School via FaceBook, and she sells her gorgeous handicrafts on Etsy at MyRandomActs on a special-order basis. For just $15 (including Priority shipping), she made these Baby of Steel "Superman" Mitts:

And here's how they were sent to me, wrapped so beautifully! That little tag she added is hand-stamped.

I wanted to wrap the mitts in a fun way, so I made a fabric pouch, using Timeless Treasures/Smirk Super Hero fabrics and some scrap white fabric:

And the back:

I started with the tutorial for an iPhone Case at During Quiet Time, but I made my own template in InDesign and pretty much just did it my own way. Not fancy, but it works! 

I've been itching to use this material since I bought it back in December, and I think it came out O.K. considering: 1) I've never done this before, 2) my machine was acting up so I had to remove the stitches a kagillion times, and 3) I totally refused to get out the iron. I broke a needle pulling that baker's twine through too!

The Newspaper-patterned buttons are from Daisy D's Paper Company.

Of course, I made a card as well:

You may remember the cityscape die cuts from several of my recent posts (archived here). The baby carriage rubber stamp is by Viva Las VegaStamps, and the sentiment is from a set that came with an issue of Cards Beautiful.

I used some Graphic 45 paper on the inside to give it more of a "baby" feel.

I wish I had taken a photo of everything all together, but it had been pouring for days while I put it all together and I simply couldn't get any good light. Anyway, it got in the mail just in time. I wish I could share a photo of our new nephew with you, but it goes without saying that he's super-cute at 6lbs 8oz!

Also, as total coincidence as I didn't know the little guy's name until his birth, the woman who made the mittens has a son with the same name as our nephew!

Thank you for visiting, and best to you & yours,

Sunday, June 16, 2013

Silly Scrapper

Pile It On #24
This week at Pile It On, we're challenging you to use this sketch, made by our own Katie of Both Sides of the Paper, along with your other favorite challenges. You're going to love the DT projects; they all follow the sketch to the letter, yet are so unique. Of course, you're welcome to rotate and adapt the sketch, as long as it resembles the original.

For this card, I used the Crafting Sentiments Pack and Crafters Do It Digital Stamp & Paper Pack by Coosty Creations, available at StitchyBear's Digi Outlet.
click to enlarge
Not only are the digis a total hoot (see the whole story below), they were too much fun to work with. I spent an afternoon paper-piecing the image, and it was totally worth it!

The textured background on the image is from the digi paper set, and I also used 100lb Hammermill, Kraft from Jo-Ann's, shimmery red, gold, silver & white papers from Recollections, and a Graphic 45 DP (the dress). I covered her hair with
fine Flower Soft by running it through my Xyron sticker machine. The scrapper, scissors, paint brushes, and paper pile were colored with Copics. The Scrabble pieces on the table are inked with Antique Linen distress ink; I just pressed the piece onto the inkpad briefly, which gives it a nice texture too. 

The actual Scrabble pieces are heat-embossed with Kaleidoscope/glitter powder, and I colored the sides with a Krylon gold leafing pen.

click to enlarge
The gold mesh is actually drywall tape, colored with the same gold leafing pen. I stuck the tape onto tin foil to make it easy to color (I usually use a piece of glass, but I couldn't find it!), and then ran my glue stick over it before applying it to the card, just to help it stick.

The brocade ribbon and buttons are from my stash. I tied silver thread onto all of them, even the teensy ones. The buttons and Scrabble pieces are adhered with Glossy Accents (I used ZipDry for everything else).

I used SP & Company's Stitchery Doo Stamp Set and more
Kaleidoscope/glitter embossing powder to make a faux stitching border on the background as well as on the red piece (it's almost impossible to see the outer border in the pictures, sorry!).

And the inside, featuring another one of the crafty sentiments:
Pile It On #24
Artistic Inspirations: Stitching (real or faux)
Di's Digis Designs: Beautiful Borders
The Hobby House: Anything Goes
Little Red Wagon #189: Use 3 or more patterned papers
Ooh La La Creations: Buttons & Bling
Pile It On Challenge #24: Sketch

Through The Craft Room Door: Anything Goes

Besides being on the Pile It On team, I'm also on the DT for One Stitch at a Time (OSAAT), the challenge blog for StitchyBear's Digi Outlet (SBDO). Recently, my teamie Chriss requested some digi stamps for a craft-related card, and StitchyBear Creator Jane (Coosty Creations) made some fabulous digis, digi papers, and matching sentiments.

Crafting Bear Digital Stamp & Paper Pack
Crafting Sentiments Pack

The card and story that resulted are both wonderful, so do check out Chriss's beautiful post about the power of crafting with friends. I had been following all of this on the SBDO FaceBook page, and when I saw the "Scrapbookers Do It On the Table" sentiment, I just had to request a digi of a "shocked" crafter. Jane (Mimi) went out of her way to create a fabulous digi, with matching papers!

Crafters Do It Digital Stamp & Paper Pack

Not only did she give me this as a gift, she made a special red-tinted version of the scissors-patterned paper. I wanted to make a card for my Mom, and her favorite color is red! I ended up using two of the lavender papers as well, which made for an interesting color combo. Thank you Mimi!

Chriss used this same set to make this gift card holder; Love how she's colored the crafter.

Thank you for visiting, and hope you'll join us this week at Pile It On,