Monday, August 30, 2010

i think i've cracked...

wanna crack? It's fun, I promise. =)

This is the tutorial I posted over at the CI blog today for Monday Inspiration.... This technique can also be used over stamps, inked images, plain card stock... Using the Creative Inspirations Paint just gives it an added shimmer along with color under the enamel. =)

WARNING: this technique requires the use of a heat tool. The heated objects are VERY hot. Please use caution... and tweezers..... (or you will end up with burnt finger tips like me.)

Let's get started!

You will need:
The cut out you want to use
CI paint of your choice
Clear Embossing ink
Heat tool
Freezer (optional)
Ink (optional)

Step 1: choose image/die cut you want to work with. I am using a leaf from the Cricut "Preserves" cartridge. Most anything works for this, so be creative.

Step 2: Paint with desired Creative Inspirations paint. This adds great shimmer beneath the enamel. (I'm using Silver Frost here)

Step 3: Dry completely. This is important! Either set it aside for a while, or zap it with a heat gun... Just make sure it is dry.

Step 4: Press the image (paint side down) into a clear embossing ink pad. Yes, your fingers get messy... but really, isn't that part of the fun?

Step 5: Cover in UTEE (Ultra Thick Embossing Enamel). I keep mine in a box with a snap lid. It is easier to work with this way, than out of a jar (for me at least)

Step 6: Heat with heat gun until powder is melted.

Step 7: Working fast, cover your HOT piece with UTEE again. (this is where I advise using tweezers. The enamel is very hot!) The powder will stick to the hot enamel.

Step 8: Heat again until powder is melted. You have now completed a second layer

Step 9: Repeat steps 7-8 until desired build up is achieved. (For cracking, at least3-4 good layers are needed.)

*note: You can use regular clear embossing powder for this technique, but it takes a LOT more layers to build up the right thickness*

You now have a very shimmery piece with a nice rounded enamel coating. Doesn't the CI paint add a nice touch?

You are free to stop here and use the piece as is. However, if you want to add more interest, distress, and texture, continue on.

Step 10: Place piece in freezer for a few minutes. (yup, you read right... the freezer)

Step 11: Take piece out of the freezer, and quickly (while it is still very cold) and gently bend the piece. Cracks will appear. These cracks are random, and aren't really controllable... If you want more cracks, bend more. If your piece doesn't crack, place in freezer for a few more minutes.

This is a very forgiving technique. If you don't like the placement of the cracks, simply reheat with the heat gun, re-freeze, and try again.

Again, you can stop here. If you want to enhance the look of your cracks, continue on.

Step 12: Using a blending tool, or a piece of sponge, rub dye ink over the piece. You really need to work the ink into the cracks, so don't be afraid to really press firmly when you are applying the ink.

Step 13: Using a damp cloth, gently rub away the ink. The enamel resists the ink by it's very nature, so when you wipe away the ink from the enamel, you are left with only the ink that was forced into the cracks. Pretty cool, huh!

Your piece will look something like this.

I used the above technique on this card (I didn't add ink over the cracks though... I wanted it to be more frosty looking.)
Paper: Bazzill, Cordinations, Unknown patterned paper
Ink: Memento, VersaMark, Powder Puff
CI paint: Ivory, Antique Silver
Cricut: "Preserves"
Stamps: SEI "Mimosa", Inkadinkado "Sketchy Flourishes"
Other: UTEE. Sewing Machine

Here is a close up of the grapes. They were painted "Ivory", so in some lights they look purple, and in some lights they look almost creamy...
I ran the patterned paper through my sewing machine, and inked all the edges.

Well, there you have it! I hope you enjoy!

Saturday, August 28, 2010

animal crackers....

Hey all!

So, I can't actually show you what I have been working on the past few days... Some I don't want to post here until after it goes live on the site it was designed for, and some that I can't share until after tomorrow....

Why? Well..... I made a b-day card for someone... and I know that someone reads my blog from time to time... Don't want to spoil the surprise! =)

Anyway, I pulled a project that I did a while ago, but never got it on the blog. This is my nephew making his animal faces... Isn't he cute!

Paper: SEI, Bazzill
Ink: Distress, Martha Stewart pigment, brilliance
Stamps: American Crafts "Laughter", Autumn Leaves "On the Edge", Stampendous alphabet and flower, Fancy Pants "Pollen Dust"
Punches: Marvy circle, Fiskars boarder
Pen: Mark it
Other: rhinestones

Paper: DCWV, Coredinations, Bazzill, unknow
Cricut: Pagoda
Other Die cuts: "The Jungle and Zoo Safari"
Ink: Powder Puff
Pens: Mark-it, inkssensials white, black glaze
Other: Provo Craft "Mesh Texture" embossing folder, Perfect Pearls

(ok, enough of the products used... LOL!)
this cut is from Pagoda... I used gold perfect pearls to make it all shimmery. It was embossed with the "Mesh Texture" folder to look like scales

Isn't this gater cute!!! Lots of inking for dimension, and again embossed with the "Mesh Texture" for the scales

Just inking on the turtle...

Elephant is also just inked... I guess I could have wrinkled the card stock to show the texture of elephant skin... but hey, the kid is 3..... I don't know that he cares if the elephant is wrinkled.... (ok, so the real reason it isn't wrinkled is that I just had that idea as I was typing this.... LOL)

One fun way to mix things up a bit is to use a boarder punch on the edge of your photograph... some people aren't comfortable cutting photographs, but I think that it can be a great accent.

I also used lots of stamps all over to boarder things and add interest. I guess this explains why it takes me so long to do pages... I LOVE adding lots of little details.... I have some really cute pictures to scrapbook of this little dude, and his sister... however the printer is out of ink. =( So, I can't print them now.... Maybe I'll design some pages on my Gypsy while I wait for ink...

Have a fabulous rest of the weekend!

Thursday, August 26, 2010

b-day for fall...

Hello all!
After a very rough last few days, my mom took me out for some "retail therapy". Man I had fun! But, I am back in to share a project with you all! Yay!

So I asked the Creative Inspirations team to be inspired by the Autumn season... their projects are all great and can be found here....

I however, strayed from the traditional crimsons, rusts, yellows, and browns in favor of a deep purple. All the deep rich colors remind me of fall.... and I've got some fall b-days in my family, so this is what I came up with....
Paper: Bazzill, white cardstock
Stamps: Fiskars "Polka Dots", Stampendeous "Ribbon"
Ink: Memento
Cricut: Preserves
CI Paint: *limited edition* Burgundy, Blush
Other: ribbon, rhinestones

I stamped my background with the Burgundy CI paint. I love how it adds that little extra something.... the flowers were cut out of white cardstock, painted with Blush, then crinkled up to add texture. I also dragged my Burgundy paint pad over the edge of the card.

And... big announcement...*drum roll...* the CIDT is in search of new designers! Yup, yup, yup! So, if you are interested, you can find all the details here. Fabulous, huh!

have a fantastic day, and get those applications sent in!

Monday, August 23, 2010


Hey everyone! Monday Inspiration time over at the CI blog....

Once again, I thought I would share here too... this technique works well with ink as well as CI paint, so I feel it is totally worth sharing with all of you who may not be familiar with this technique

That said, this is actually really cool with the Creative Inspiration paint... I wasn't sure it would work with the paint, but I think it has a better effect than with ink...

So, ready to start? Let's go!

This technique is often known as second generation stamping... for those who don't know what I'm talking about, here is the basics...

first, ink your stamp, and stamp as normal. This is your FIRST generation stamp.

If you stamp again without reinking, you get a lighter image... this is your SECOND generation stamp.

Ok... Now let's take that and give it a new shimmer!

Step 1: make a CI stamp pad with your choice of CI paint. (you can find a step by step tutorial on this step here) I am using Aqua Marine here.

Step 2: give your paint pad a spritz or two of water. Because of how quickly this paint dries, a little extra water helps to extend the paint to the second generation.

Step 3: ink up your stamp with paint.

Step 4: stamp your first generation image. If you don't want this on your project, you can use a scrap paper. (if you want, you can keep this for another project...)

Step 5: stamp your second generation.

(wow.. I think this is one of my simplest tutorials to date!)

Ok, here is what your first generation will look like. Full of color, full of shimmer.

Here is what your second generation will look like. Hint of color, still FULL of shimmer. Pretty cool, huh!

Here is a card I made to showcase this technique. (however, I thought I would get double milage with this one and make it fit into a challenge over at Olive Juice Studio.
Paper: Bazzill, My Mind's Eye, white card
Stamps: Hero Arts "Antique Engravings", "Speckled Ornaments"
Creative Inspirations Paint: Garnet
Cricut: Accents Essentials
Other: ribbon, rhinestones

I used the second generation of the swirl, and the first generation with the butterfly. I love how they are the same color, but there is so much more dimension by using different intensities.

As for the challenge requirements...
1. must include at least one stamped image. *check*
2. must include at least 1 cricut cut *check... the patterned paper with window*
3. must include fiber *check*
4. must include at least one piece of bling *check... rhinestones AND shimmer paint*
5. must include at least one piece of patterned paper *check*


Have a fabulous day!

Saturday, August 21, 2010

jungle gem...

Happy Saturday to all!

Like I have said before, I have become addicted to making rhinestone templates.... I find it relaxing.... I know, I'm weird... Oh well!

So here is my latest rhinestone creation featuring the lion from Zooballo...
Paper: Carrie Stephens "Spontaneous Delight", white cardstock
Ink: VersaMark, Powder Puff
Stamps: Fancy Pants "Little Star"
Cricut: Zooballoo, Plantin Schoolbook, Gypsy
Other: embossing powder, rhinestones

I used some scallop scissors to cut the striped paper... I think it adds a little flare to the finished project. Sticking with the distressed look of the paper, I inked the edges of the card in a brown pigment ink.
Here is the link to my rhinestone template video....
Because I was working with paper this time, I used a cardstock template that I taped over the card with dirty tape *I stuck the tape to my pants first so it wouldn't rip the paper when I removed it..*

By using cardstock, the template is reusable. I have a binder with sheet protecters that I keep masks and templates in to keep them organized.

Making your own rhinestone design opens up a lot of artistic opportunities. You can choose the size, shape, and colors. Also, You don't have the strips of tape showing between the rhinestones. Because I had to glue these ones on, you do see a little glue around the edges in the right light... However I am hoping to get a bunch of hot fix rhinestones soon, and that will take care of the problem of sloppy gluing. =)

Anyway, I just wanted to pop in and share... I am now off to work on fun stuff.. maybe a video or two...

Have a creative day!

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

being a feature...

Hey everyone!

I'm being featured over at the Creative Inspirations blog... You know what that means, right? It means we need more people to link us projects made with the CI paints so that you don't need to see more of me. =)

Anyway, here is the project being featured.
Paper: Coredinations, watercolor paper, plain white cardstock
Stamps: Yvonne Albritton Designs, 3 Bugs in a Rug "Flower Patch"
Ink: VersaMark, Mark It, Memento
CI: Evergree, Tanzanite, Buttercup, Burnt Clay
Other: Fiskars Edger, embossing powder, foam dots

I stamped the image with VersaMark, then embossed it with black embossing powder. I then used a Fantastix to water color the image in with the CI paints. You can see more instructions on this technique here.

I cut out the stamped image, and attached it to the card with foam dots to give it some dimension.

You can only sort of see it in the picture, but I also brushed on a little paint around the edges of the card. Not only does this give it a little bit of color (like inking around the edges) but it also gives it shimmer... How beautiful!!!

I decided to make a bunch of different colors of this card to make a quick and fun set. So I have one in Plum, and one in Tickled Pink.

These cards go together really fast, and I make them in a kind of assembly line. It is a fun and easy way to get a set all done and ready to either use, or give away.

Have a fabulous day! I'll be back soon with more fun stuff to share.

Monday, August 16, 2010

faux green thumb...

Hey everyone! It's Monday once again! This of course means that I had to write up a tutorial for the CI blog.

I thought I would share the whole shebang with you here too though since I did a very brief explanation of it yesterday. =)

first, a little background...
I grew up loving gardens. My Grandma had a beautiful garden, and could tell you the names of all sorts of flowers. My Mom also does well in the garden. I love flowers, but somehow, I didn't get the "green thumb" gene... I tend to kill plants rather than grow them. =(
I have found a solution though... paper flowers! (I don't kill near as many of these...)

This beauty is one of my many favorites from my Mom's garden... The Globe Mallow (also known as the Desert, or Apricot Mallow) I just love the colors....

This is where today's inspiration comes from.

Step 1: cut out 2 sizes of flowers out of plain old white card stock (I used a Cricut, but any die cutting machine, punch or hand cut flower will work great!)

Step 2: stick the flowers onto the sticky part of a sticky note. (this holds them in place for you) Paint your flowers with your choice of Creative Inspirations Paint. (I used Mango to match the Mallows)

Step 3: when dry, flip the flowers over and paint the other side.

the smaller flowers will be your buds. We will work with them first.

Step 4: using scissors, snip between the petals towards the center of the flower. *don't snip the petals all the way apart... that would be bad.*

Step 5: Using your fingernail, or a bone folder, gently bend the centers of each petal.

Step 6: wrap your bud around the end of a paintbrush or other small cylinder. If you have followed steps 4-5, it shouldn't be too hard to shape your bud

Step 7: take your bud off the paintbrush and pinch the end of it to help it hold it's shape

Step 8: Dip the bottom of your bud in a green CI paint (I chose Emerald)

Step 9: Set aside to dry.
*you can make tighter buds by adding a drop of hot glue inside the bud and pinching it closed. A variety of buds is alway fun.

we will now move on the the bigger flowers

Step 10: scrunch up the bigger flowers. If it is a little stiff, you can mist them with a little bit of water to help break down the fibers of the paper.

Step 11: add what ever you want for your centers. I used a rhinestone

Step 12: Using your center as a guide, gently pull the petals up to form a bowl shape

Step 13: put a large glob of hot glue onto a non-stick craft sheet.

Step 14: start pressing your cupped flowers into your glue glob. I usually put about 3 big flowers per glob

Step 15: Add in you buds

Step 16: when the glue is completely cooled, the flower bunch should peel easily off the craft sheet and be ready to glue on your card.

Doing a lot of these bunches ahead of time is a good way to save time when you need a fancy embellishment and don't have much time.
I kept my project very simple to show how much these shimmery flowers really jazz up even the simplest of cards.

Paper: Carrie Stephens "Spontaneous Delight", plain white cardstock
Stamps: Fancy Pants "Fresh Mod"
Ink: Memento
Cricut: Preserves
CI paint: Mango, Emerald
Other: rhinestones, ribbon
Aren't they fab!!! I love it when I feel like I can work with flowers without killing them...=)

A little reminder for those of you who didn't play along with our blog hop yesterday... There is still time! Here is the link to get you started... You may have to scroll down on the personal blogs to find the right post with the clues. You have until Wed. night to enter for the drawing.

Well, I need to go clean up my studio so I can get more done! Have a wonderful day everyone!

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Creative Inspirations blog hop

I'm so glad you stopped by! If you are here for the Creative Inspirations Paint Blog Hop, you should have arrived here from Gerrie's fabulous blog. If not, you may want to start here so you can gather all your clues in order. (otherwise you will have to unscramble).

If you don't have a clue as to what I am talking about, check it out here. There is a great prize to be won by one lucky person who plays along.

So, as I'm sure you have become aware by now, there are 4 amazing limited edition paint colors joining the lineup of Creative Inspirations Paint. When I got my jars in the mail, I sat there and drooled for quite some time. =)

So, here is my project showcasing the new colors...

Paper: Bazzill, white cardstock
CI paint: Burgundy, Ivory, Beige, Denium
Die cuts: Quickutz "Cookie Cutter Flower set", Cricut "Preserves"
Other: ribbon, pearls

This my friends is a lovely color, can I just say that? This Burgundy rose was made from white cardstock (like all the roses here), painted with CI paint, then glued together. I threaded the pearls through the center for a little extra touch.

Beige.... Man, I never thought I would be a fan of this color, but I adore it! So many possibilities!

Ivory.. This creamy beauty is amazing! I can think of tons of uses, but can you imagine wedding things done with this? WOW!

Denium... Amazing! This is one of my favs for the CI blues! These flowers were also made from white cardstock. I scrunched them up after I painted them. I then put a big glob of hot glue on my non-stick craft sheet, an pressed three flowers into each glob. When they cooled, the the bunches peeled right off. A quick blast from the heat gun softened the glue enough to slide in a wire to hold them.

So, wanna know how to get these yummy paints for yourself? Well, hop on over here. There are 55 colors plus these 4 new limited edition colors to choose from. Remember, these colors will only be around until the end of 2010!

And, guess what... You are almost done with the hop! Now the only thing left to do is jump back over here and leave a comment with your answer from all the clues you have gathered. Which reminds me, you probably want your clue from me....
And Y would you want your last clue? To have the chance to win a fabulous prize of course! *hehehe*

good luck!

Thursday, August 12, 2010

the orchid wrap...

Hey all!

This week we are continuing the B-day celebrations over at Creative Inspirations Blog by using the CI paints on gift wrap.

Now, I had many different ideas about what to do for this challenge... Nothing seemed to be working out how I wanted though... This is what I finally came up with.
Paper: Bazzill, white cardstock
Cricut: Pagoda, Plantin Schoolbook, Cindy Loo
CI paint: Winter Frost, Fuchsia, Sunshine
Other: ribbon, Studio G flock, Inksentials white pen

I wanted to keep my project simple, yet elegant. The box is made from 2 pieces of 12x12 cardstock that I folded, cut, and glued.

I love orchids, so I wanted to try to make one. I wanted some dimension to it, so I designed it in 3 layers on my Gypsy. Each layer was cut out of plain white cardstock then painted. I think the shimmer makes it look almost metalic.
The white details were added with the Inkssentials opaque white pen.
I made my fuzzy centers by putting drops of hot glue on a non-stick craft sheet, then covering them with flock. When they were cool, I simply popped them off the mat, and glued them on.
Well, I hope you like my simple take on this challenge. Don't forget to check out the CI blog here to see the other great ideas. Also, the CI blog is having a blog hop on Sunday. It should be lots of fun! There is a big announcement, projects from the whole DT, and a great prize to be won. So don't forget to join the fun on Sunday! *hint: you will want to start at the CI blog and follow the directions from there.... just sayin'...*

have a sparkly day!

Wednesday, August 11, 2010


hey everyone! Just a random post today... This is one of my babies.

She likes to help me craft... though she isn't always as helpful as she thinks she is. =)
And for all you who think I must try to strangle my dog... She stuck her head in there all by herself. I just looked over and started laughing. I snapped a picture then helped her out.
I promise, she wasn't in any danger!

Find something that makes you smile today


Tuesday, August 10, 2010


I have a confession to make.... ever since I put together my rhinestone tutorial, I have gone a bit rhinestone crazy.... Since rhinestones at the craft store cost so much, I finally decided I needed to find a resource for wholesale rhinestones to keep up with my addiction without breaking the bank... Hopefully soon I will have a nice large stash.... Sorry fam... everything is bling-ed up from now on!

However, I can sit down and focus (when absolutely necessary)... which it was necessary yesterday. As you know I do technique tutorials over on the Creative Inspirations blog every Monday. This is what I came up with this time.

Paper: DCWV, mulberry paper, plain cardstock
Ink: VersaMark, Archival, Printworks Designer ink
Stamps: Hero Arts "Silhouette Burst"
Basic Grey "Swirly"
CI paint: Sea Foam, Fairy Dust
Other: embossing powder

You can find the step by step instructions here.
Basically, I covered a piece of cardstock with CI paint. I then stamped my image with VersaMark, and embossed with clear embossing powder. I then went over the whole piece with my dye ink. You are left with a great resist image, with a bucket load of shine!

I stamped swirls over the ink with Archival ink. I then glued a piece of mulberry paper behind it, and attached it to my card.

I inked the edges of my card with the same ink I used on my focal image. I then went over it again with Fairy Dust CI. Since Fairy Dust is transparent, it doesn't change the color, it just adds that subtle shimmer that helps tie the whole card together.
Well, I guess I should get busy again... lots to do, lots to do.
Have a fantastic day!

Friday, August 6, 2010

rhinestone template

Hey all!

I am happy to present my very first VIDEO tutorial! YAY!!!

Someone on the Cricut messageboard asked if it was possible to make the oh so popular rhinestone templates with the Cricut. Well, I had been messing around with the idea for a while, but I decided to share what I have come up with.

I use the Gypsy here. I am a mac girl, so Design Studio and I just aren't very good friends.... but I think the technique will still work with it.

A few things I learned:

1. Don't bump, tip, or drop an open container of rhinestones.
2. if you do bump, tip, or drop an open container of rhinestones, don't do it over your computer keyboard.... or a long shag carpet.
3. the heat applicators are HOT. Don't touch.
4. it is a good idea to test your ideas, and learn how to use the tools before trying to teach others... otherwise you kinda look stupid... *thank goodness for the edit features!!!*
5. melted vinyl stinks.
6. don't bother trying to scold a obedience school drop-out dog with a rolled up piece of paper.
7. If you do try to scold said dog with a rolled up piece of paper, make sure that paper isn't your current project.
8. If it is your current project, don't expect to get it back... at least in one piece.
9. voice overs are a lot harder than they sound
10. thank goodness for computer junkie dads who can figure out not only how to upload your videos onto his computer, but also how to bypass imovie to send your video to your personal computer for easy editing. Love you dad!

Have a fabulous day everyone!

Thursday, August 5, 2010

ready to party?

Hello everyone!

We have been having quite the thunderstorms here... Man, I LOVE thunderstorms! It does, however, limit my crafting abilities....

Today, we are officially kicking of the 1 year birthday bash over at Creative Inspirations Paint blog! I wanted to inspire people to use the CI paints in their party planning, so I challenged the DT to bling up some party favors! Check out what the team did... it is great stuff!

Here is my party favor... I find making sour cream containers to be tons of fun... Not sure why.... Oh well...
Paper: Shabby Princess Designs "Festival"
CI Paint: Mango, Green Olive, Fairy Dust
Ink: Memento
Stamps: Clear Dollar Stamps "Thoughtful Notes"
Other: Maya Road chipboard shapes, acrylic paint, jump ring, tagger tail

I added some shimmer to my patterned paper by painting directly over parts of the design with Fairy Dust. This is a quick and easy way to add a little bling to any paper.

I base coated the chipboard shapes with white acrylic paint. Because of the water based nature of CI paints, they are kind of transparent. If you paint directly onto the chipboard, the brown color will show through a little. A base coat takes care of the problem.

I used a jump ring to connect the chipboard pieces together to allow motion. I then used my tagger gun to attach them to the sour cream container. (FYI: tagger guns shoot tiny plastic tagger tails through things... They are the same things that stores use to attach price tags to your shirts. I used to attach coupons to clothes using this tool... It was my favorite way to pass time when I worked at a store. However, they are VERY dangerous! The tagger slipped while I was making this project, and yes, blood was spilt. My poor finger.... sigh. So please be careful!)

So, have a fabulous day!!!