Friday, November 13, 2015

Simply Create Too DT Challenge no. 98

Give Thanks friends. Yes, we all have lots of things to be thankful for.

Do you keep a gratitude journal? I just began one in October and will add to it until the end of the year. When I get a bit stuck...I take so much for granted...I just write that I'm glad I got out of bed in the morning. It doesn't have to be that way. Make sure you don't forget it.

Off my soapbox and onto my card for Simply Create Too.

This card used stamps from Simon Says Stamp. I've been subscribing to their monthly kits and enjoying them quite a bit. There were lots of goodies to choose from. I'm not in the habit of using chips for my cards, but these fit perfectly. The papers except for one were from the kit too. I added some bakers twine and a button from my stash. The heart was made using my Brother Scan 'N Cut machine. I added the faux stitching to make it stand-out.

You have an entire week to make a thanks card, so won't you join us?


Tuesday, November 10, 2015

I'm So Broke, but it's nearly Christmas

Hello everyone,
My title is so apt. I truly don't want to go on-line and look at my checking account. I went to a local Stamp Convention this past weekend vowing and re-vowing all last week not to spend more than $100. Alas, I am so very weak when it comes to these events. It wasn't even as good as it usually is. Quite a few well-known vendors were missing. But somehow, yes somehow, I think I used my debit card to the tune of $400. I seem to be on some kind of a die cut  journey. We used to have only Spellbinders...with Sizzix in the mix a bit. I can no longer keep track of the companies and the beautiful lines of products. So, that's what did me in. And let's not even mention the $99 kit from Catherine Pooler's new "Stamps of Approval" line. This kit is different. It doesn't have paper, washi tape, ribbons, etc., Just stamps and some dies. I think she's on to something, because you have to hurry and order as soon as the kit goes on-line or you'll miss out. It's pricy initial, however when I averaged out the price of each stamp set and the dies, it came to a savings of about $40 if I were to buy them from individual companies and that doesn't include shipping.

So here's my card made with a set from SOA. The company is called, the ton Coutour clear stamps. I've never heard of them, but Catherine did. Go check out Chatherine's kits and her website StampNation. She's been around awhile, but I found her her somewhat recently.
Glad I did.

I pieced the leaves using some long-retired SU dsp. and fastened them onto a a mat of watercolored paper. The base is A2 SU artichoke green cs. The medium I used for coloring are my new set of Inktense pencils. I wanted to try them out so I bought a set of 12. Now I want the big girl set of 72. Hmmm, but under the circumstances, not any time soon. The sentiment and little bitty images are from another SOA find by Casual Fridays, called "Snowy Sayings." They're embossed in Ranger's liquid platinum embossing powder.  A bit of glossy accents for the berries and we're done.

Hope you like my card.


Monday, October 19, 2015

Get Creative Challenges no. 26, Use Halloween Colors

So Fall is trying to come here in AZ, but it's a bit of a haul as temps struggle to stay in the double digits. Nevertheless, the kids come out for Halloween. My family doesn't get into it much, preferring to do the Harvest Festivals that several churches have for families.

That doesn't stop me from making a card or two to celebrate it. At Get Creative Challenges, we have a sponsor who graciously offered a few digi images to play with, SamiStamps. Go check out her shop. There's a sale going on this week.

I struggle with coloring faces, so I opted for the easy way This digi image is called  butterfly flower. Can you see how the top flower is shaped like a butterfly?

I couldn't exactly envision Halloween colors for the flower, so I reached for the bleach and used that technique. It worked perfectly on some Coredinations premium krafty card stock. It was the right color and thin enough to absorb the bleach. The leaves were colored with pencil. The other papers were from Graphic 45, French Country. I used a cream heavyweight base and some beige baker's twine. The sentiment is from a Flourishes set. I stamped it in SU whisper white craft ink and then embossed it with white embossing powder. The colors are the subtle side of Halloween on a get well card which thankfully, I don't need right now so it will be added to my stash.

You'll have two weeks to play along with us at Get Creative Challenges. I hope you can join us and play.


Saturday, September 26, 2015

Get Creative Challenges no. 24

Hi Stampers,

Yes, I know, my card has been posted on the challenge blog and I haven't bothered to post it here. Well, I'm not quite sure why, but my visitors are few and I don mean few. Not even more than one or two of our team visit my blog. It's kinda sad and that is just one of the reasons that I don't rush to post. Another is my horrible photo taking skills. Certainly I am to blame for it. I don't own a tripod, though I have 2 or 3 on my Amazon wish list. It just isn't a priority for me. However, I know it may be part of the reason I don't get more visitors. I promise my cards are often more than passable, but you can't tell from my poor quality photos and of course, I just have the basic edit capabilities.
So at the end of this year, if I haven't persuaded myself to purchase a tripod, I will be leaving one of the design teams I'm on. I will probably give the other one, Simply Create Too another year.

The image is a digi from Fantasy Art by Niki Burnett. I have tried to accustom myself to digital stamp. And I feel I've made quite a gallant effort, but for me, mounting, inking and pressing the stamp down to paper is a most gratifying thing to do. While downloading, sizing and printing out an image doesn't cut it. There may be a point in time when I totally have run out of space to store even one last clear stamp set, but I pray when it does, my eyes will have grown too old to see, my hands will be too arthritic and my back just won't allow me to sit long enough to finish a card.

In the meantime, our challenge is to use the fantastical and I made a step easel card and lots of fussy cutting from a Recollections 12x12 paper pad to get all the animals on board. The pumpkin was made with my seldom used, but much loved Brother Scan n' Cut, which cut the shape from its inventory and I just had to color him up.

And before I say good-bye, I entered my card here, Creative Craft Cottage, because I couldn't resist an Anything Goes challenge.

I hope you get a chance to play along with Get Creative Challenges this weekend or soon We have just one more week.


Saturday, September 12, 2015

Simply Create Too Design Team challenge no. 94, Early Christmas Wishes

Happy Saturday friends,

I don't plan on spending a ton of time on making Christmas cards this year. I will however, be making  treat containers for several teachers and friends. So I need a fast and simple card to turn out about 20 and move on. This card couldn't be any simpler. Just take some pretty gold (the in-color of the moment) and red card stock. Use a Tim Holt Alterations Holiday Wishes script die to cut out a sentiment and strategically place it on your card. Add a score line for emphasis and voila. Now that I look at it here, a little bling...sequins, dots?? might do a little something for it, but this is the basis.

Come play with us at Simply Create Too. I could use a little inspiration. One or two of the cards I'll send will need a little gussying up.

Have a bless weekend.


Friday, August 28, 2015

Lousy Photo for Challenge no. 22 at Get Creative Challenges

Well hi, it's been a crazy week...didn't post my card on my blog in a timely fashion, but I own a calendar of $85.00 in value and oooddlless of time spent getting it just right. The photo is a lousy one on the Get Creative Challenge blog, so no one will even know what it is. It's bad enough I rarely get more than two comments and now no one is even going to take a second look!
Then there was a huge monsoon rainstorm last night resulting in one of our two trees in the front yard blowing down that will probably end up in the back of a landscaper's truck. To top it off, we had no electric right around dinner-time and it lasted three hours. Can you say NO INTERNET = MISERY!
Then I thought it would be cooler in the morning, since we had a monsoon, and so I took the Great Dane out for a walk. NOT! And then there were so many trees down in our beautiful common areas. Sad!  That's the big things.

Now for the glasses keep falling off my face and I haven't had a check-up in more than two years; no mamo in three years, and my grandson can't find the top to one of my newest Hefty Plastic containers. Those dang containers ain't cheap and I'm rather anal about keeping them together.

There's my card. My photo doesn't do it justice. It's an image from our challenge sponsor, Eureka Stamps. Please do play along with us and I hope your week is better than mine was.


Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Get Creative Chllenges no. 20, Monochromatic Purple

Hi Stampers,

We're having our 20th challenge at Get Creative Challenges and our theme is monochromatic purple. Our sponsor is Polka Doodle. (I'll update with a link as it doesn't seem to be functioning at the moment.)

Here's my image and card.

I was complaining to my design team members the difficulty I have with copics when coloring hair and faces. So I made this gal's hair gray. I've seen gorgeous shapely women with gray hair. Some people age well. I, unfortunately, am not one of them.

I used copics to color everything and Wink of Stella in clear to go over her purse. I used lots of dies for frames, flourishes and the butterfly. Then finished it with ribbon and a ceramic flower and pearls. The sentiment is from my stash and wasn't in a set. All of the papers are different shades of purple.
Her skin tones were done with Derwent skin tone pencils. I think I do better with these than copics.

At Get Creative Challenges, we always have a sponsor, so you can win digi stamps. So don't delay. Head on over and play along with us.


Monday, July 27, 2015

All I Can Say is I'm a DoDo Bird

Yes, I'm calling myself names. I totally forgot to post my card for the team on my blog for Simply Create Too. I've been super busy with moving my 93 yr. old ex-father-in-law into our home. Yup, I wrote ex. He wants to spend his last days with his grands and great-grands and even me. He's a pretty spry guy for his age and we were a multi-generational family before he came. We now consist of four generations ages 7 through 93. Oh the stories we will be able to share and memories aplenty.

Here's my card for our 90th challenge, For A Precious Child.

I pulled out the pencils to color, and paper-pieced the balloon.  The image is from a British magazine that periodically includes clear stamp sets with their issues. The papers are from a Simon Says kit I had a while back. The sentiment is from a very old SU set and the button, bling and bakers twine were in my stash.  I used a W-9 die for the dash panel and a Lawn Fawn for the bracket on top and made the tag by hand with a square punch.

I also am submitting this card to one other challenge.
It's all about summer love and ice creams says it well. Gosh I wish I could eat it everyday. 

We still have a few days to post in our challenge and I'm not seeing many participants, so head on over and get crafty. I'm gonna sit by this old gent and hear stories about WW II. I suspect I'll hear them frequently. I may need to start some kind of a memory book. 


Saturday, July 11, 2015

Less Is More challenge no. 232...Oh NO! One Layer

Yes Limettes, the dreaded one layer card challenge, at least for me it is. I took the plunge and hunted around my very messy desk and came up with a Stampabilities clear mount set called Fountain Pen. It was just 3 small images in a $1.99 set. I've had it for quite some time and finally, the moment came to use it.

I masked an area of a 5 x 7 Strathmore water-color ready-made card and then using Faber Castell Gelatos in yellow, orange and green shades, I smooched the colors around with a wet sponge. I've recently seen a tutorial where they apply the color directly to the sponge and then spritz the sponge. I then used my marker spritzer from SU (so glad I have been hanging onto this seldom used tool), using a Memento Paris Dusk dual marker. I removed the mask and stamped in Memento tuxedo black using my MISTI to get an accurate position within the water-colored area. I had a sentiment in mind, but couldn't see a suitable place for it. I think the card works without it. I was thinking of a torn page and ink splattered effect.

Hope you have some time to play with this challenge at Less Is More.

Have a great rest of the weekend.


Sunday, July 5, 2015

Get Creative Challenges no. 18, Must Use Flowers

Hi Stampers,

We're having a gorgeous July 4th weekend in terms of weather and my little family gathered together at my oldest daughter's new home 20 minutes away. She's the first in the family to have a home with a pool and believe me, living in Arizona, a pool is a really good thing.

We're using flowers at our Get Creative Challenges this month and we're sponsored by The Stamping Boutique here, I used a digi image from the store and added a computer-generated sentiment. I had my hippie days in mind when making this card. I still regret not going to the Woodstock festival. And if you don't know what that was, you are definitely less than 50 yrs. old.

My card is brighter than it appears here and fun. The flowers are punched from a retired SU punch and the I colored with Bic markers. I have tons of these but don't use them since it's difficult to achieve shading. For this car, I didn't think shading was necessary. The papers are pieces I had hanging around for quite awhile. A little bling in the middle of the flowers and this car is ready to head out on its adventures.

Remember, family comes first for this fun weekend, but there are two weeks to submit at Get Creative Challenges, and we'd love to see your creations. Who doesn't own flower crafty stuff?


Saturday, June 6, 2015

Get Creative Challenges No. 16, QKR Stampede Sponsored

Happy Saturday,
I have a design team card for you today. Isn't this a silly old lady? Get Creative Challenges is being sponsored by QKR Stampede for the next two weeks. We had several images to choose from and they're all fun. If you join us, remember to use butterflies. I didn't follow the rules with this image. I just couldn't see her with sweet butterflies anywhere. I colored her with copics and for once I'm happy with the job I did. I think I need to use a lighter hand than I have been. It certainly helped that I didn't exactly have hair to color.

I'll be sending this off to a pal with a note to join me for lunch soon.

Please join us at our challenge and have fun with butterflies.


Friday, May 29, 2015

Challenge no. 86 at Simply Create Too (mid-post)

Hi Stamping World,

The weekend is here....Yippie. Yet, my heart does go out to Texans and Okies (that's not offensive right?), who are suffering having to start over and for those who have lost loved ones. How my heart ached for the father who could not be of any help to his daughter as her car tilted over in the flooded waters, when she was on her way home. We're supposed to be there for our children and I can't imagine how tough this is for her dad. There were many sad stories. Cell phones allow us to reach out and seek help, but they also mean that the opportunity for our loved to say last words is also a fact.

My DT submission for Simply Create Too challenge no. 86, Keep It Simple is a sympathy card for a cat-lover. Pet loss cards should be simple. We share such special relationships with our furry companions. Everyone has their own way of handling the loss. Some of us mourn deeply and can't imagine replacing their companion. Others do get another one to make new memories with. I have rarely been without an animal in my life. I run from ant farms, gerbils, birds, fish, cats, dogs. The only one I've not had the pleasure of enjoying...I think, is a snake. Oh, and ferrets are quite popular, but no go for me.

So, this kitty and paws is from an Art Obsessions. There's no name listed, so let's just call it Cat Lady. There are six other cute stamps in the set. I had to fussy cut the little booger and I'm happy to say I'm mastering the art gradually.  I'm sure I'll get around to using some of the other more fun images.  The sentiment is from Stampin' UpAlthough it takes me a bit of time to get a layout for CAS cards, I'm always attracted to
them .

This card will join my sympathy stash and I hope I won't need to use it anytime soon.

Hope you find some time to play this weekend. I got some new small hauls from Papertrey, Simon Says Stamp and Michaels and my mojo has kicked in. It should make for some regular posts.


Tuesday, May 12, 2015

Get Creative Challenges no. 14

Hi Stampers,

My card is already uploaded at Get Creative Cards. But with Mother's Day festivities, I totally forgot to post on my blog.

There's not much time left to join us, but please consider it. Our sponsor is Oddball Art and I used a cute digi image of this little gal for a Mother's Day. I hope you had a blessed and Happy Mother's Day.

Hugs & Blessings,

Sunday, May 3, 2015

Simply Create Too Challenge Pretty Woman

Hi Stampers,

After claiming that I would stamp everyday because I had purchased a MISTI, I let you guys down. I've been stamping, but getting the cards on my blog has just fallen by the wayside. I've also enabled several of my friends to jump on the MISTI wagon. I'm predicting it will be just as important to have in your craft room as a scoreboard was several years ago. Seriously, does anyone NOT own a scoreboard now?

That said, my challenge team at Simply Create Too is gearing up for Mother's Day, but is keeping it simple. You just need to create a card that's womanly. Heaven knows that can be interpreted in many ways. Believe it or not, I actually get teary-eyed watching a woman park a big-rig truck. And if I had a stamp image of that, I'd use it. I mean really, what can't a woman do these days? Thank You Lord.

But I digress, so on to my card. This is a Julie Nutting image. She had birthday themed accessory stamps in the package, so I cut off the balloon she was holding and using pretty papers and a Studio G sramp for the sentiment, piecing a portion of her dress, she is ready to go. She's colored with Copics and I'm still struggling with getting the hair right, but she'll do.

Won't you let your imagination fly with us for the next two weeks. We'd love to have you.


Friday, April 3, 2015

Oh My...Simply Create Too is Gonna Be BUSY!

Well friends, I've been absent from my blog for quite some time. I booked a cruise on an amazing ship with the Holland America line called Quantum. Perhaps you've heard of it as it is the most tech-savvy ship built so far. It has a robot to make cocktails for one thing, and I wore a watch style band to open my cabin door. I never had to use any paper money, as everything was paid for via this watch band. I went alone by choice and had a chance to really unwind, relax and in general just enjoy.

So I'm home again and I have a card up for the Simply Create Too Design Team. We've had a change in leadership and a bit of a make-over. We're still going strong with challenges and I'm now one of the more senior design team members.

We're in the middle of our 82nd challenge and it's one that every stamper can enjoy, as it's "Anything Goes" time. We get record numbers of entries when we do this challenge, so why not head over and join in the fun.

My card uses lots of fun colors for Easter and a clear stamp image from Penny Black that's been around for quite some time. I colored with Copics. She's a happy little girl with her bling, gold cord, button, and crochet flower, and fun papers.

Happy Easter to all of my readers.


Thursday, February 26, 2015

It's a Mini Challenge at Caseology

Hi Friends,

Card styles change as much as clothing styles do I think. We are either going with big bold images, or with small. But in the end, it really is a matter of personal taste in both arenas, don't you think?
Personally, I had my mini-skirt days and having a decent pair of gams, I rocked them back in the 60s. Now, I live in a different 60s era so to speak, having been blessed with 65 years on this earth. So happily, I joined in here Casology no. 135 Mini, since I will never wear a mini-skirt again.

Both of these sweet little images are from OHDeerMe kits by Freckled Fawn & Hero Arts. I actually thought I'd be using them to dress up pages in my Erin Condren Planner, but I just never seem to have time to play with it. So, why not use them here I thought.

The card base is Geo. Pacific white cs and the the die for the mat is from WPlus9. The inks used are Memento  and I paper-pieced the cup with some paper from my stash. The right side edge of the good stuff image is a bit splotchy and no amount of photo editing (with my limited skills) would fix it. It doesn't look nearly as bad IRL.

I have someone in mind for this card, so it won't be collecting dust.

If you own some wee/mini/tiny stamps, why not head on over to Casology and play along.


Tuesday, February 24, 2015

I Think I'm Gonna Post Everyday...well almost

Hi Friends,

I have just received the most amazing crafty product on the current market. It's called a MISTI. It's a tool that allows you to place any stamp (unmounted) onto it in order to achieve perfect placement onto your card. Tale a look at my card

I'll bet you're thinking that it took me forever and a few tries before I was able to get this just right.
This card was completed in 10 minutes and half the time was me staring at sentiments and changing my mind. I saw this product demonstrated by Jennifer McGuire on her blog
I went to the store she suggested in her recipe for the card, but they were out-of-stock. I was determined to have one. Amazon didn't even have it and they have everything, right?! I finally tracked it down here My Sweet Petunia  This is the inventor's website. You may consider it a bit pricy at more than $50.00, And you do need to order at least one of the magnets, but this is a tool that will pay for itself quickly.

So my card is a plain white Georgia Pacific white cs base and lots of different Memento dye inks to stamp the images. The clock is the same one I used for my LIM post yesterday (CTMH clock).
The sentiment, a lovely day is from Freckled Fawn (it came in a monthly subscription kit) and the birthday sentiment is from Stampendous set Birthday Wishes. All of the images were clear stamps. That's what I felt most comfortable stamping with to start out with this tool. However, I moved on to rubber stamps later. As long as the stamp is unmounted, you can use this tool. There is a video at the link that is a clear explanation of how to use MISTI.

I was so excited with my results, that I did a challenge search and managed to find two challenge blogs to submit to,  Eureka Stamps. for their 129th challenge which is birthday cards. And,
Lawnscaping is celebrating their 100th challenge. What fun, huh?

And now you have it. I've enabled you and you will be seeing lots more of my cards.
Now go plot  plan how to get one of these into your hands and on your craft desk.


Sunday, February 22, 2015

Less Is More No. 212, "Take Wing"

Hi Friends,

I found a moment and some inspiration this weekend, deciding to try a Less Is More challenge.
It's all about wings. Now these are actually not wings, but palm fronds. As I've said, I was truly inspired to use them as wings with a clock. The wing die is a die from and is part of their Creatibles design. I picked it up from a convention to give them a go having never heard of the line. They are a blue color and cut well. The clock is from a long-ago retired Close To My Heart set. The sentiment is from an Inkadinkado set that's quite old also. The card base is A2, Recollections heavy weight base white. I cut the clock out with a circle dye and bumped it up a bit with pop dots.

I hope you will get to participate in a challenge or two this week. Or just become inspired by the world around you.


Friday, February 20, 2015

Entering a Challenge (or Not)

Hi Friends,

I made two sets of cards to give away to some church friends who gave me a thank you card for serving. Let me say, that the thought behind their cards was beautiful, but the cards themselves needed help. It became obvious they could use a few snail mail cards. So I got to work. Both were touched, thankful and assured me they would definitely use them. That's all the thanks I need.

While I did not take photos of the boxes I used to contain them, I did take photos of my faves and those I'll be making more of. This one is one of them. I used the color wash effect using my Peerless water colors that I've had for many years. They were in desperate need of some love. I mounted the sentiment/water color panel on a dry embossed panel, then onto an SU marina mist base. This is an A2 sized card.

I'm also entering it into a challenge that I just recently found.
Well, gosh...scratch that. I just checked the challenge rules out and my card doesn't quite make it. No reason why you can't enjoy it though, then try one for yourself.

You may see it over on the design team that I belong to, Simply Create Too. We've got an Anything Goes challenge this time and it will certainly fit.


Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Get Creative Challenges no. 8, Use Red, White & Pink

Hi Friends,

Our weather is so lovely this week and I'm squeezing in lots of walking trying to get to to the "required fit" number of 10,000 steps. It ain't easy for me. Our family's 9 mo. old 125 lb. Great Dane is great (pun intended) incentive.

The team at Get Creative Challenges is in the Valentine's Day mode with rules asking for the typical "love" colors. We've all been gifted with a digi from our sponsor,  Lacy Sunshine. Since I love frogs, I picked this one. In AZ, we have several hot-air balloon shows yearly. Have you ever been near one of these babies? Roaring fires start them and they're huge and colorful. I've tried to achieve that in my coloring. I usually use copics, but I have about three lonely sets of various brand color pencils, so I picked my Faber Castell Aquarelle set and smoothed the color with the gamsol technique. It's not as vibrant as copics, but I'm pleased with the affect.

Other items I used are papers from My Mind's Eye, sentiment from Lawn Fawn's Birthday Tags and the banners are from a set by Heidi Swapp. I used a red wink of stella pen on the bow's heart, but photos don't show this sparkly coloring. I used the "out of the box" technique to cut so that the balloon would be outside of the circle. It was done with a Spellbinder's circle die. I absolutely love this technique. A little bling in the corner and my challenge card is done.

I'm getting lots of practice with this challenge team on how to use digitals for stamping and it's a good thing. I've truly run out of room for stamps...even photopolymer/clear ones/unmounted, etc. I love that the size of the image can be changed to suit your card size or just some design ideas you may have in your head. The challenge winner will get a few images of their very own to play with.

Won't you join us. Our challenge runs for 12 more days.

Blessings, Erica

Thursday, February 5, 2015

Simply Create Too Challenge No. 78, Valentine's Day/Hearts

I know, I know, it's been forever. I'm just glad I didn't make a New Year's resolution to be more consistent in blog posting as I surely would have blown it with only one post in January.

At Simply Create Too, we've been given the easy peasy challenge to use hearts. My dear Valentine is no longer with me to celebrate but I have many fond memories to cherish so I'm not at all sad on this day and wish a Happy Valentine's Day to those who have someone to share with. And we do have to remember your Valentine can be anyone who holds a special place in your heart.

Here's my card.

I have used mostly Stampin' Up products...the bird punch and leaf branch are long retired. Paper is real red and whisper white. I used a CB embossing folder to add dimension and Spellbinder hearts dies. The sentiment is from Stampendous. Easy Peasy card for an easy peasy challenge. Everybody has a heart somewhere in their stash, right. Come play with us. You still have a week to go.


Friday, January 2, 2015

Simply Create Too "Celebrate" challenge no. 76

Happy New Year!
Sometimes I have to pinch myself knowing that I lived 50 years in one century and now 14 going on 15 years in a new one. How blessed I am.

The first challenge of 2015 for the Simply Create Too Design Team was to use the theme, celebrate. That's easy peasy since we're just leaving a most celebratory time of the year for many people. I chose the the most recent and used die cut Cottage Cutz  elegant champagne glasses  and the sentiment from Elizabeth Crafts Designs. I used a black 5x6 card base and Nestabilities labels twenty for the dap mat and another fancy oval from Nestabilities. I only had to color the champagne and I used copics for that. A little bling in the corners finishes it off. I sent this card out right to a dear friend who didn't get a Christmas card from me.

Why not play along with this challenge and if you are still recuperating from the holiday festivities, come back for future challenges. We have lots of fun planned.