Friday, November 29, 2013

chalk it up...

Hello my wonderful friends!

I hope you had a spectacular Thanksgiving (for those of you who celebrate it), and didn't get trampled (for those of you crazy enough to go shopping on black friday! YIKES!)  

I know I'm kinda on the late side with my FWF project, but hey, better late than never, right, and if I type fast, I should still be able to link up. :)

Today's card features one of my new favorite techniques I learned from Tim Holtz... It's his version of the current chalkboard craze.

The key element in this technique is Ranger's Antiquities Frosted Crystals embossing Powder. It is a clear embossing powder that when heated, becomes matte and textured... as long as you don't overheat it... if you overheat it, the effect is kinda ruined. So be careful, and watch it close!

Here you can see the difference.. The top one was stamped with a clear embossing ink, then embossed with Frosted Crystals embossing powder. The bottom was stamped with clear embossing ink then embossed with regular clear embossing powder... notice it is shiny and smooth.

So, basically, stamp your image on smooth black (or any dark color) card stock with clear embossing ink. Emboss with Frosted Crystals embossing powder being sure not to overheat. 

Once cooled, rub a piece of regular chalk over the piece. The texture of the frosted crystals will catch the chalk!

You can smear and wipe away extra chalk and dust with your fingers or a rag. 

It leaves a very realistic look and feel! It is messy, but I totally love it!


Supplies Used:
Paper: CoreDinations, card stock
Ink: VersaMark, ColorBox
Stamps: Unity "Choose Joy with a Heart", "Strength and Dignity KOM"
Creative Inspirations Paint: Mocha Latte 
Other: acrylic paint, ribbon

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

circles in a row...

Hello my wonderful friends!

I was asked how I made the border on this baby card that I shared during the Unity Friends Blog Hop... So, I thought I would put together a quick little tutorial. 

First off, punch or die cut a bunch of circles from double sided paper.

Next, cut a square of paper that just BARELY fits inside your circle. The corners should each be touching but not going past the edges of the circle... yeah, mine isn't perfect, your's doesn't have to be either, however, the more precise you are, the better everything will line up in the end. 

Score and fold two sides of your circle using your square as your guide.
You will want half of your circles folded from one side and half from the other.. (in my case, half are folded with the blue facing up, and half with the yellow facing up)

Glue down your flaps

Now, line them up going every other one. 

Simple. :)


Sunday, November 24, 2013

Unity Friends Blog Hop

Hello all my wonderful friends, and welcome to all those who are here for the first time!

Thanks for joining us on the Unity Friends BLOG HOP!!!

 If you just got here from Camille's blog, then you are in the right place, if not start over at Unity's Blog cuz you're not gonna want to miss this!

I am SO excited to be doing a Unity hop with this ^ talented, funny, and super sweet bunch of ladies!  (and no, I didn't make myself big there because I think so much of myself. LOL! It just happened that way when Angela put together the collage. hehehe)

We were asked to showcase some of Thursday's new releases.. which, by the way, are ON SALE!

First up... Hello Little One
Can we just say PERFECT TIMING for this set! I needed to make a baby shower card, and I really don't have many baby stamps... The butterfly comes from the KOM Strength and Dignity, but...

This ADORABLE sentiment is from the new Hello Little One kit. I LOVE it!

Another timely release is the Bee Happy Hexagons...
I was asked to make 100 bottle cap zipper pulls for elementary aged kids birthday gifts... I only have 99 to go, but at least I now know what I'm putting in them! LOL!

The background for this tag is from a print I did a while ago on my Gelli Plate, and was just waiting for the right project.  This stamp seemed to call out for bright happy colors, with the black ink to keep it grounded. I don't have a gift to go with it, but I have a pretty good idea of just who this tag may go to. (and I think it will be PERFECT!)

And last, but not least, a card in a bit more subdued tones...
 (I have apparently been in a bright mood this weekend!)

The quotes in the Lasting Thoughts kit are FABULOUS! 
"who knows where this path will take us but let's go hand in hand & promise not to let go because it may lead us somewhere vast and amazing"

This is my favorite quote from the kit! 
The background is done with ink, paint, stencils, and some faint "Insightful Meadows" flowers dusted with Perfect Pearls.  

SOOOOO... Here's where it gets totally AWESOME (cuz Unity is just like that!)

LEAVE a comment on my BLOG Post and you have a CHANCE to WIN a GRAB BAG of 20 STAMPS from Unity! :)  Winners will be picked and ANNOUNCED on the Unity Blog and FACEBOOK PAGE on Tuesday Morning!

And don't forget to do some Unity shopping while the prices are good!!!!

Your next stop is Karen!


Saturday, November 23, 2013

stuck on glitter...

Tis the season for glitz and glam!

Hello my wonderful friends!

 Are you ready to get sparkly? 

I've noticed in the stores a fun thing... glitter tape.  It's just what it sounds like... a roll of tape that is glitterized. Well, that got my brain to thinking...

That's fun and all, but...

You guessed it, I wanted more control! I wanted it to match MY projects, MY colors, MY patterns, and MY style! I didn't want to have to match my work to what the STORE decided to carry! UGG!

But, when has that really stopped me before?  It just forces me to be a little more creative. :)

So, here is a fun way to make YOUR OWN glitter tape. (well, more like glitter ribbon...)

Step 1: Stamp a design onto tissue paper.

Step 2: Cover with a strong double sided adhesive, and trim off extra tissue... I like to use a double sided adhesive that comes in a sheet so I can cut it to the size and shape I want. I'm using a Silhouette Double Sided Adhesive sheet here.

Step 3: Peel off the back of the double sided adhesive and cover in Creative Inspirations Angel Dust Resplendence.  Press the glitter onto the adhesive and brush off the extra to return to the jar.

The fun thing about this technique, is not only is it totally customizable, but it is also semi-transparent, and you can tint it by rubbing on a little distress ink to the tissue paper side of the tape. Of course you can make plain glitter tape by simply covering one side of the double side adhesive with any color Resplendence glitter, then using the back side to adhere it to your project.

The glittered tissue tape will have to be attached with an adhesive like a glue runner or another piece of double sided adhesive... or, you can do what I did here..,

Because the back is not sticky, and it is stabilized by the tape, it can be tied in a bow. 

Not your average glitter tape, huh!


Friday, November 22, 2013


Hello my wonderful friends! 

Raise your hand if you are behind in your scrapbooking.

Yeah... me too. 

(you can all put your hands down now.)

Echo Park has a fun and super easy way getting a hold on those photos. It's called Photo Freedom, and you can check it out HERE. Their focus is really about keeping it simple and getting the photos and stories recorded. However, that doesn't mean it has to be style has to be sacrificed! Their papers and embellishments are adorable!

I was sent one of their "Oh So Thankful" kits to work with for ScrapbookUSA Expo...

My page came together so quickly! I was amazed! 

Tucked behind the photo is a hidden journalling tag. The kit comes with some super cute double sided journalling cards, all I had to do was add a tab on the edge so it is easy to pull out.

I made a few border strips as well as a the quote tag with some stamps from my stash. I love being able to mix in stuff I already have with current kits on the market!

Here's a quick tip for you...

When using stickers to make titles, I like to use a section of the sticker backing paper to figure out the spacing. By putting a ruler underneath, you can get your letters straight and evenly spaced (you can often see through the backing papers enough to see the ruler lines). Be sure to leave the stickers hanging off the edge of the paper for easy transfer...

To move them to your project, simply place them where you want them, firmly rub the stickers on your project where they are hanging off the backing, slide the backing sheet out and rub on the other half. Easy titles! LOVE!


Supplies Used:
Paper: Echo Park "Oh So Thankful" photo freedom kit
Ink: Memento, Archival, Distress
Stamps: Unity "Tribal Trend", "Jumprope", "Strength and Dignity"
Dies: Spellbinders "Labels 18"
Other: tissue paper, glitter, pearls

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

snowball fight...

Hello my wonderful friends!

I hope you are having a fantastic week thus far! Mine has been pretty busy, with a promise of getting crazier! 

I am proud to say, that amidst all the hectic-ness of this time of year, I am AHEAD of schedule with this card.  (I don't actually need it for another couple weeks!)
This little meerkat cracks me up! The stamp set was totally worth it just for him! LOL! 
He is colored using Distress markers (one of my favorite coloring methods!)

To spice things up a bit, I used some Creative Inspirations Paint (Winter Frost) to paint the snow so it is all shimmery. and some flocking on the hat so it is fuzzy.  Little details, but they make a big difference!


Supplies Used:
Paper: CoreDinations, card stock, watercolor paper
Ink: Archival Ink, Distress Ink
Stamps: Adam Pescott "Furry Friends", Unity "Blossom Stackers
Creative Inspirations Paint: Winter Frost
Dies: Spellbinders "Labels 18"
Other: Perfect Pearls, Enamel Accents, flocking 

Friday, November 15, 2013

distressed metal leaf stamping...

Hello my fabulous friends!

It's Friday, and while I am waiting for the mail to come to see if I got the packages I need for my next projects, I figured I would get a tutorial done for Unity's Friends with Flair.

I just finished making 72 Christmas ornaments that were covered in silver leafing, so I guess you could say I have had leafing on my brain... anyway, here is:

Distressed Metal Leaf Stamping

Step 1: Stamp image with pigment ink

Step 2: Cover with a heat and stick powder/sticky embossing powder just like you would any embossing powder-- cover, then gently tap off the extra to return it to the jar. 
(several different companies make this powder including Ranger, A-Muse, and Stampin' Up)

Step 3: Heat with a heat gun just until it turns shiny. DON'T OVERHEAT!

Step 4: Press on some metal leafing.  Burnish it on with your fingers. If the instructions of your powder say to heat again after applying whatever you are sticking to it, go ahead and heat it again now.

Step 5: Make sure the powder is COMPLETELY cooled. This won't take long. Pull off any large loose pieces of leafing and save them. You can then use a soft sponge to rub off the smaller pieces of loose leafing. Go ahead and save those too. They are still good!

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Up until now, you have done the normal stamping with leafing technique, and if you want to leave it there, that's fine.  However, this is where the "distressed leafing" comes in, and why I had you use a colored pigment ink instead of a clear embossing ink in step #1.

Step 6: Take a piece of masking tape and scrunch it up. Dab at the image with it to lift up random areas of the leafing from off the image. Where the hold of the glue is somewhat weak, the leafing will come off revealing the color underneath. It also leaves a fun texture on the remaining leafing. 

Continue doing this until you are happy with the results. If you end up taking too much off an area, simply press on some of your scrap leafing. There should still be enough stick to grab it. Gently buff away the extra as before, and don't be quite as vigorous in that area with your tape. 

Step 7: If you want, go ahead and ink over it with Distress inks. both the leafing and the pigment ink that has the remnants of the sticky powder on it will resist the ink. 


Supplies Used:
Paper: Core'Dinations, card stock
Ink: Distress ink, Colorbox pigment
Stamps: Unity "Feel the Joy"& "Vintage Handwritten"
Other: gold leafing, Amuse sticky powder

Saturday, November 9, 2013

gelli time...

Hello my wonderful friends!

 Are you ready for a little enabling fun?

I want to talk about one of my favorite tools to use with paint...

(commonly referred to as a "Gelli plate")

So what exactly is it? 

I was over at my parents' house the other day, and I was talking to my mom about some project I had been working on that used the Gelli plate (she knew what it was and was following the conversation just fine...). My dad overheard, and got this really funny look on his face. He looked at me and said "What exactly do you DO with a jelly plate? Isn't it kind of messy?"

I couldn't help but laugh! 

The truth is it is messy, but not in the peanut-butter-and-jelly way he was envisioning! 

What it really is, is piece of  rubberized-ish gelatin that stores at room temperature that is used to make mono-prints. Think of when you make Jello Jigglers-- how the jello is really firm... this is even firmer, but is still somewhat squishy. It is absolutely amazing and addicting!

So, what do you do with it?

Well, that is one of the wonderful things about this. It is a TOOL. 
You can make SO MANY different styles of art using this, and I can only scratch the surface in one post. But I can give you the general idea to get you started. From there, it is a journey of experimentation and learning. (and if you google it, or search pinterest, you can find lots of great inspiration and tutorials!)

I generally work with acrylics, but you can use watercolors, or even oils! 
Simply put some paint on and brayer it around.

You can add some texture with all sorts of things.. they make special rubber combs, but I like using found things like bubble wrap, plastic mesh, cheesecloth, or stamps (hey, they're 'found' overtaking my studio!).

You can also use stencils!

Once you have your design, lay a piece of paper over it and rub it with your hand to transfer the paint.

This is called a "pull"

Notice there is still paint left on the plate... you can clean that off if you want, but, I leave it on and just add more paint over it. 

You can get interesting effects if you mist some water onto the paint... or some spray ink 

*the instructions do say that they don't recommend using dye inks because they may stain your plate, but that the stains will not effect the printing performance... I figure it is similar to my clear stamps being stained. I really don't mind, so I do it. But to be fair, I did warn you.*

Here's that pull... 

Ok.. want to add some dazzle? Creative Inspirations Paint work beautifully on the Gelli!  Here I have put on some cream acrylic paint and Denium CI paint.

Here's the pull... Isn't it pretty!

Hard to see in this picture, but the shimmer transfers BEAUTIFULLY!

Here's a fun tip: If you use an embossing folder to emboss some card stock, then use that to create texture on your Gelli plate, you get some amazingly fun embossed pieces to work with later. Here you can see the shimmer from another print I made using CI paints. (If you are into mixed media... those piece of bubble wrap I showed earlier are pretty darn cool looking too, after they are covered in multiple layers of pretty paint!)

After you have made your prints, you can use them for what ever you want... art journal pages, cards, scrapbook pages, die cuts... what ever!

Want to expand your horizons even more? You don't have to stick to paper... You can print on fabric, canvas, ribbon, tape, directly INTO your art journal... there is just SO much you can do! And each pull is unique!

There are some people who have developed serious artistic skills that aren't near as random and they actually make pictures instead of just random backgrounds... It really is a versatile TOOL!  One that the beginners can love as much as the artist who has been honing their skills for years.

So, where do you get one?

Good question! They can be kinda hard to find! 

One of the ladies on the CI design team, Tina, owns a store -Frog Dog Studio- where you can get a kit with a Gelli Plate and a few things to get you started... Click HERE to check it out.

You can also find them HERE at in a variety of sizes.