Saturday, October 24, 2009

Having a little break...

Hi everyone,

We are about to head off on another adventure, so I probably won't be posting anything new for a little bit.  I have been playing with chipboard the last couple of days though, and I have to say that heat and stick powder is my new best friend!  Wow, but doesn't it make those chipboard letters all pretty? (with the help of some glitter of course!)  Planning on sharing it with you all soon, once I get through the adventure, and all the subsequent adventure laundry that is ...

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Bridie's new Hat.

So I was sitting there, wondering what SU will surprise us with in the not so far away summer mini catalogue.  Thinking about what is available now, and has been available in the past, in their other markets, and of course, making a little wishlist!  

I got to thinking about the cute little crocheted flower embellishments that are yet to make it to the NZ/Aust market.  Then I got to thinking that, probably, if I put my mind to it, I could make my own crochet flower embellishments (although I would need to find my glasses if I wanted to make them as cute and dainty as the SU ones!)  It wouldn't be the first time I have crocheted on a scrapbooking project (but you will have to take my word for that because that album is in storage somewhere - silly me!)  In fact, the last time I had crocheted, I am pretty sure, was on that layout.

From there the thoughts went completely away from paper crafty stuff, and were focused firmly on the crochet.  A quick trip to the shop to grab some wool, and now Bridie is the very proud owner of an experimental hat (that, just quietly, could possibly double as a toilet roll cover if we were that way inclined!)  But we are not.  So hat it is.  And Bridie is pretty pleased with it.  She wants one for her baby doll too. 

(based on the 'Peek-a-Boo Flower Hat  pattern by Mary Jane Hall)

See - not paper crafty - but I've been working on, and actually finishing, other projects.  All is not lost!

Friday, October 16, 2009

Little stamps with lots of layers

I haven't quite finished with my challenge to use those little image stamps.  This time round it is all about one teeny tiny stamped image, and then lots of layers to make that little image appear bigger than it is.  I really liked how I got to use lots of different tools and techniques and yet the cards still have a nice, clean and simple look to them.

The first one made use of a handy little 'love note' and matching envelope - working with the small image/small project idea. 

The heart was stamped and embossed with gold, to make it that little bit more special, then layered on gold card to really give it some sparkle. I used stampin' dimensionals to attach it to a layer of white card, and then attached it all to a crimped red layer before attaching to the card front. 

Just to show you how this idea works with more standard sized cards, here it is again.  This time I added another layer of gold to seperate the crimped red from the red card base, and added an embossed gold greeting. 

I really like the textural interest of the embossing, raised layers, and crimped card, as well as that metallic shine.  It all works together to give the feel of one larger image, rather than just that original little heart.  Why is it though, that when it comes to embossing, I can never just look, I always have to touch it too?

Next I used the same idea to make this birthday card. 

No embossing this time.  The image was stamped with basic gray ink and then coloured using pastels (chalks) and a blender pen.  I did keep the crimped layer, and for added textural interest I roughed up the edges of the other layers (no fancy tools needed -  fingernails work fine!) 

Add some coordinating embellishments, such as these brads, stamp a greeting, and the birthday card is done.  What I like best is that this card could work for boys or girls, of almost any age. - very handy! You don't always find a card like that!

And did you notice - all bold brights again (and this time it wasn't on purpose!)  I am starting to think that the images from the short and sweet stampset, and bold brights colours, were made for each other!

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

DIY backgrounds using little stamps

I have to start by saying that SU! have a fantastic range of stamps just perfect for baby projects - including the Nursery Necessities set I used to make this card.  With all those other options available, this pin stamp, cute as it is, wouldn't normally be my first choice.  Remembering though, that my challenge is to make use of those smaller stamps that are so often under utilized, and in particular the images from the Short and Sweet stamp set.  Nappy pin it is!

I am actually really pleased with how this card came out.  I have used the idea of repetition again, but this time in a random fashion to make my own patterned background.  Some of the pins are stamped twice before reinking, so you get a bit of variety in the depth of colour of that baja blue ink.   I used Night of Navy card to give the baja blue a little lift, and then finished it off with some sponging to soften the edges, and some matching baja ribbon.  When you have a ribbon that matches it is almost a crime not to use it!

I have also used this set to make backgrounds for scrapbook layouts, and not just on those mini projects.

The little heart outline was just perfect to stamp on the cocoa card strips for this 12 x 12 layout (although you may have to click on that photo and enlarge it to actually see it!)  The rose red strips had word stamps decorating them (including the 'love you' from short and sweet) and the rose red patterned paper pieces came from a single 6x6 piece - the photo and embellishments hide the joins so you would never know!

This is a layout that has been shown lots in real life, but pretty sure I haven't shown it here before.  It was full of experimentation and little challenges to myself - the first really girly, frilly, busy layout I had done, and still one of my favourites.  Makes me want to get the pretties kit out every time I see it.  It also reminds me, that after committing to sewing directly on the layout I discovered my sewing machine wasn't working like it should.  The repair man, after fixing it, told me he had never seen that particular problem before, and if it ever happened again I should bring it back IMMEDIATELY! Eek. I didn't tell him I had been using it to sew cardboard!  (and I haven't had the courage to use the machine again for anything, let alone scrapbooking!)

Maybe that should be my next challenge?!

Friday, October 2, 2009

Making use of those little image stamps

In an attempt to get back into the crafting groove I have been setting myself some challenges.  The latest one is to make use of those little image stamps that you often find in a set.  In particular, I am looking at the great little 'short and sweet' stamp set.  This is a popular, value for money stamp set, but I find I am most often using the greetings, and not often the little images that go along.

So, over the next little bit I am hoping to share a few ideas using these little stamps.   The first, and easiest idea is of course to use those little stamps on little projects - gift tags and smaller cards.  The cute little 'Love Notes' (card and matching envelope) are the perfect size.  The second idea, and one I also used for these cards, is repetition.  Use that little image more than once, to make it look like a bigger image.  I used the stamp-a-ma-jig to help with even spacing.  Take that little flower and stamp it out nine times, and this is what you get:

This time I also set myself the challenge of using only the bold bright colours.  I do have a couple that I use often, but must confess, overall I am not so much of a bold brights girl (and in fact, I discovered that a couple of my BB ink spots hadn't even been opened before these cards!)  I am pleased to say that I have used every single bold bright colour in these cards - and I actually really like them!  The fact that the image is a small outline one, means that you get a nice splash of colour, but lots of white also helps to tone it down.  That's what I think anyway - what do you think?

Best of all, this idea works just as well on a more conventional sized card (and look - the last of those bold bright colours!)