Thursday, August 17, 2017

Back to School

Hi, Bloggin' Buddies!

School starts today for the young ones around here.

I had been eyeing the Lawn Fawn Scalloped Pop-Up die for quite awhile and finally decided that I had to have it. I used it on this card I made to celebrate the new school year for a sweet young gal who often crafts with me.

Let me just say that it all looked so much easier on all the videos! I know I should have done a "test drive" to shake out all the bugs, but once I decided to do it, I jumped right on in. There are little idiosyncrasies that one must figure out and allow for - the next one will be easier. It must be- ha!

I thought a "wise owl" theme would be fun, not just because I get a real kick out of owls, but because I have quite a collection of owl stamps (many are quite old - can't seem to let them go!). These are all from Hero Arts. I made a neutral colored box and each owl has sparkly & bold color.  I used a couple of computer-generated sentiments for two of the box flaps.

This folds so perfectly into a regular A3 envelope and I adore the sweet tiny star and heart dies that are included in the set.

Now that I have walked through the construction of this, I believe that future ones will go together much less effortlessly and that I will be able to make them even more complex and fun. I knew all those years of studying architecture would come in handy some day!

Thanks for the visit and grab your pee-chees and your lunch boxes (now you know how old I really am!) and be wise in school!


Sunday, August 13, 2017

Don't go, summertime!

Hi, Bloggin' Buddies!

Although this summer has been incredibly hot, I sure don't like seeing it getting ready to say "good-bye".  The days are already getting shorter and my happy summertime mode is being threatened. My hubby loves fall, but I always dread it, so there you go!

For some reason my card making summer has been influenced heavily by the amazing Tim Holtz. I've always appreciated Tim's products and designs, but for whatever reason, I've been immersed this summer. It seems I'm always reaching for his "Crazy Birds", his hilarious "Hipsters", the amazing new Distress Oxide Inks, and I even have a new interest in his alcohol inks. My Pinterest boards are full of Tim-related products and ideas!

Today I have a card featuring a Crazy Bird. I have a friend who is into altered art and volunteers with a local charter school, teaching art. She is amazing! I wanted to show my support and wish her a good school year, so I made this "Z-fold" card using Distress Inks, some matching flowers from my stash and a cute speech bubble stamp from Lawn Fawn's "Chit Chat" set. I used some Tim Holtz Ranger Distress Collection cardstock to coordinate with the ink colors.

I had actually never made a Z-fold card until I took a class from my friend Sandy earlier this summer. It adds a little interest, especially for an artsy card and an ever more artsy recipient.

Thanks for the visit, and continue to enjoy your summer while you may.......

Monday, July 31, 2017

You Old Goat

Hello, Bloggin' Buddies!

Yes, it is very hot here, so I am allowing myself to spend more time in the studio. Such a shame.....

As I have said before, when I first saw the Tim Holtz Hipster (Stampers Anonymous and Sizzix) series, I was taken aback and honestly slightly disgusted. But, they seriously grew on me and now they are my special pals. Their personalities are so unique and silly! And, depending on how they are used, they can be so versatile -- and so terribly HIP!

One of my favorites is this goat (although my first love was the Ostrich, here). Originally I had made a wonderful background for him with layers of Distress Oxide Inks, but when he was complete he looked so much more outstanding against this rich solid color. I embossed the background with LifeStyle Crafts' "Retro Squares" embossing folder and added a couple of strips of the Distress Oxide background to the front of the card.

Mr. Goat is stamped with Versafine Sepia ink and is watercolored with Distress Ink markers. HIs glasses and tie were done with Versafine Black and Glossy Accents were added to his glasses.

I made a little boutonnière with Memory Box "Adorable Posies" dies using Distress Cardstock. The sentiment is from the Tim Holtz Stampers Anonymous "Crazy Talk" set.

For the inside I used a perfect phrase from Simon Says Stamp's "Happy Birthday Farm Animals" set.

Hot fun in the Summertime! Thanks for the visit and stay cool and hip,

Sunday, July 30, 2017

Wining Again!

Hello, bloggin' buddies!

Hope you have had a wonderful weekend. Stinking' hot here, so some crafting going on! I haven't used my Art Impressions stamps in some time, so I got a set ("Celeste Set") out and got busy.

I like to combine paper piecing and Copic coloring to get some variety and shading. Because this gal is such a focus I decided to keep the background plain and I just added a die-cut flower (My Favorite Things "Gerbera Daisy) as an embellishment.

I particularly love how the couch turned out - it is pretty realistic!

I don't know if any of you have issues with Signa white gel pens.....they are great when they work, but I had to try several before I got one to write......I can't tell you how many of those I throw away every year. No more....I'm going to try (cheap) white acrylic paint and a tiny brush.

Thanks for the visit, have a great week!

Thursday, July 27, 2017

Detresse Oxydes

Hi, Blogging' Buddies!

I have a Paris-inspired card made with yet another Distress Oxide Ink background (hence the title of this post - I believe that would be how it is said in French - ha!). Layers and layers of color were added to watercolor paper and each was dried to create wonderful depth of colors. Love!

I have a wonderful new exercise class instructor who, besides being full of knowledge and positive attitudes, opens our classes with a little gem of wisdom and inspiration. Last week one of her opening snippets was about the Eiffel Tower, so I decided that I would make her an appropriate card to let her know how very much I already appreciate her.

I used my large Sizzix Bigz Eiffel Tower Die (an oldie!) and I embossed the entire die cut with some Hero Arts Platinum Embossing Powder. The background was stamped with a Tim Holtz/Stamper's Anonymous set called "French Market".

The stamp and die set I used for the sentiment is "Amazing" by My Favorite Things - such a fun and versatile set!

I added some crochet yarn and a charm from my stash and it is ready to go. Since I am such a Francophile, I have lots of products that I have saved over the years that, although they are rarely used, I can't seem to let go of.

Thanks for the visit - Au Revoir, mes copains!


Sunday, July 23, 2017

Still Distressing!

Hi, Bloggin' Buddies!

I just can't seem to keep my fingers clean! I have lost many hours playing with my Distress Oxide Inks - I simply can't keep my hands off of them.

This is a quick bookmark I put together for a lady at church who helped me out the other day. Since she sings in the choir, I thought this beautiful sentiment ("Lord is my Strength") from Spellbinders was appropriate - the font is so lovely! It is heat embossed on a tag that I created with Distress Oxide Inks and the "Bold Floral" stencil from Hero Arts. The butterfly is made from 2 Memory Box dies (Kaleidoscope Butterfly and Moonlight Butterfly).

Thanks for the visit and have a great week!


Thursday, July 20, 2017

Continued Crabbiness

Hello, Bloggin' Buddies!

Today I have another crabby card to share. I made this as a thank you for a friend who hosted us on a recent trip to Maryland.

I used my new all-time favorite, Distress Oxide Inks. I made this fun background with the "smooching technique" (another favorite). These adorable crabs - they just make me smile from the inside out! -  from Ranger's Dylusions "Clearly Under the Sea" set were embossed with platinum powder and watercolored with Distress oxide Inks.


The sentiment is from Little B's "Block Out" die set. I used paper from the Ranger Cor'dinations Distress Collection because it coordinates with the ink colors.

I have a hard time NOT reaching for these wonderful and diverse inks......I'm waiting for the pre-order of the second release that should soon be on their way!

Thanks so much for the visit!


Tuesday, July 18, 2017

Crabby Goodness

Hello, Bloggin' Buddies!

We just returned from a trip east visiting with beloved friends and family. One stop included visits with wonderful folks in Maryland. I got to check off a "Bucket List" item, eating Maryland crabs! Here in California we eat Dungeness crabs, so I wanted to try them. Here we are at a fun place in Baltimore, cracking and grinnin'!

I made a couple of crab-themed cards to show our appreciation for the great hospitality we were shown.

For this first one I used this super-cool "Rocky the Crab" die from Elizabeth Crafts. I put Rocky on a wobbler so he could really rock and roll! How can ya
not smile with this guy?!

The background is Distress Inks on watercolor paper embossed with Impression Obsession's "Shells" background stamp. The "Scripty Thanks" die, is a real favorite of mine from Lawn Fawn. I added a little twine to reflect my "knot-ical" skills!

A fun trip with lots of great memories! Have a "smile like Rocky" day! Thanks for the visit!


Tuesday, June 20, 2017

"Holtzing" Around

Hi, Bloggin' Buddies!

The heat has hit and I'm spending more time indoors. I had dinner with a charming young girl, the daughter of a dear friend, the other night. She told me a funny story about seeing an ostrich at a safari park.

It was time to crack open my new Stampers Anonymous Tim Holtz "Hipster" stamp set! It took me awhile to warm up to these crazy and kind of weird deigns, but with the help of my inspirational and super-talented blog pal, Cheiron Brandon (she does amazing things - check her out!), I am now a fan.

I don't have the matching dies (yet!), but the components were easy to cut. This is a simple and bright card. I paper pieced the Copic-colored various components, and added patterned paper and Glossy Accents to the glasses. The sentiment is from Paper Smooches "Blissful Banners" set (an oldie, but goodie).

Thanks for the visit and happy summer!


Sunday, June 11, 2017

Rockin' with Ranger!

Hi, Bloggin' Buddies!

I haven't done a challenge in quite awhile, so today I'm playing along with Simon Says Stamp.

Side view showing the "Z" 
I made this crazy  "Double Z Card" to celebrate the Fourth of July, a big day in our family. I love using Ranger products and that is what the design team used, so I decided to jump right in.

This card features lots of Ranger products: Distress Oxide Inks, Glossy Accents, Multi Matte Medium and Stickles. What fun!

I also used Tim's "Small Talk - Occasions" and "Crazy Birds" by Stampers Anonymous, an embossing folder by Darice, Nesting Star dies by Lifestyle Crafts and some patterned paper, a tag and an embellishment from my extensive stash.

I am adding this to Simon's Monday Challenge and Simon's Wednesday Challenge - the theme of both is "Masculine".

I sure hope you had a wonderful weekend - I appreciate the visit!

Saturday, June 10, 2017

More Foxy Friends!

Happy weekend, Bloggin' Buddies!

Last month I posted a card I had made with Stamping' Up's "Foxy Friends" set and punch.

Do think foxes are the only possibility here?! No way! There are lots of ways to make all kinds of critters with this set.

Here is a set of cards I made for a dear friend showing the versatility of this set. I love them all!

Speech bubbles are from Lawn Fawn; tree branch is Paper Smooches.

Hope you are having a wonderful weekend - it really feels like summer is on the way.

Thanks for the visit,





Wednesday, May 31, 2017

Ruh-Roh!!!!

Hi, Bloggin' Buddies!

Today I have a bit of a crazy card to share. We have a friend from our hiking group who is a big
Scooby-Doo fan - so much so that he even has a Scooby-Doo lunchbox that he brings on hikes! Yikes!

Years ago I had a great stamp set from Hanna-Barbera that I had picked up at a used stamp sale but I knew I had sold it (I figured that I'd never know anyone again who loved the guy - what a fool I was!). I was so upset because I really wanted to make one more card with it for our hiker friend.

Well, a few weeks ago I was going through a box which contained some very old cards that I had made (I can't believe that I saved them) and I found one which had these images stamped, die cut and colored!

I carefully cut them off and did my best to "remake" the card to better reflect what I do now, but I was stuck with the (dated) elements. I added some Wink of Stella, a fun wobbler, some google eyes and a wonky stitched frame die cut from Lil' Inker. Not my best work, but I'm happy to have been able to do it.

Talk about a walk in the past.......

Thanks, as always, for the visit,


Sunday, May 28, 2017

Feeling Foxy

Hello, Bloggin' Buddies!

Happy Memorial Day weekend. Let's not forget what it's all about and take a few moments to honor those who gave their lives and fought to keep this country free and great.

This critter card was a fun one - lots of layers and dimension! I don't use a great deal of Stampin Up products, but some of their designs are just so dang cute and it is great the way their papers and inks (and ribbon, pens, etc) are all color-coordinated.

This happy fellow is from the "Foxy Friends" set and matching punch which I bought from my friend Dottie. There are so many possibilities for different critters with this set - I will share more soon. I also used Stampin Up paper, designer paper, and Calypso Coral ink.

I get this amazing woodgrain paper from my LSS, the Paper Garden Boutique in Sacramento.

The speech bubble and matching die is from Lawn Fawn.

I made this card to thank the couple who put together our hiking group's getaway trip to Cannon Beach, OR. We just returned (we added some side trips) and it was simply amazing! We love Oregon.

Have a great day and thanks for the visit!

Sunday, May 21, 2017

Graduation!

Hi, Bloggin' Buddies!

At church this week we heard from 5 of the most amazing young people. They are all graduating seniors, college-bound. They conducted the church service and shared with us their journeys, their relationships with God and each other, and their love and appreciation for all who have helped them along in life. It was most inspiring - what outstanding kids (so much better than I was at that age!).

I was moved to make them each a card - we enclosed a note expressing our pride and encouragement.

For the background I used a Teresa Collins stencil blended with Distress Inks (Peacock Feathers, Twisted Citron and Pickled Raspberry). Rather than a standard "congratulations" sentiment, I selected a lovely Maya Angelou saying from Reverse Confetti's "Shine from Within" set and heat embossed it. I love that set - it has such wonderful sayings and the artsy fonts are such fun!  I used a very old (but well-loved) Hero Arts set (CL336) for the diploma and the inside graphics and embellished it all with Nuvo Drops and a touch of Stickles.

Thank goodness for my MISTI!

It warms my heart that there are great kids like this - it is our hope for the future.

Thanks for the visit,


Saturday, May 13, 2017

Let's Hear it for Courage!

Hi, Bloggin' Buddies:

Today I have a card made with the amazing new stamp and die set from Ellen Hutson called "Courage". Unfortunately, I am finding that I need a set like this more and more often. That darn cancer touches too many of our lives and takes away so much hope for so many.

I made this card for a friend from my Zumba class - she loves to dance! She has finished her long round of chemo and soon starts on another lengthy round of radiation. Her spirit and courage are such an inspiration!

I used an emboss resist with Distress Inks for the background, sprayed with some Perfect Pearls for luster. The wonderful sentiment is heat embossed with white and the crown and sword are embossed on yellow cardstock with platinum.

Thanks, Ellen, for making this set, increasing our awareness and for making such a generous donation to the Breast Cancer Research Fund from the sales. You are a blessing!

Thanks for the visit and have a lovely weekend,



Wednesday, May 10, 2017

Loving the Distress Oxide Inks!

Hi, Bloggin' Buddies:

Tim Holtz has done it again! I am SO loving the Distress Oxide Inks and can't wait for more colors to come out. I have been playing with them for a few weeks now. I made a sample "tag book" to be able to compare how they work on different papers and with different techniques - it was a real learning process.

Yesterday I got up extra early to have time to play with the inks on manila tags. They are incredibly bendable! Amazing.

I blended, stenciled, "smooched", splattered, and lifted color with water droplets and it was all super-great. I also used some Perfect Pearls for that extra touch. There are so many great color combos, even with only 12 from which to choose.

Some came out better than others, but it was a process and I am pleased. I urge you give them a try and get inky!

Thanks for the visit and have a great day,

Tuesday, May 2, 2017

I know, right???



It has been far too long since I've posted. It appears that my blog layout and settings have disappeared. Reestablishing them will be for another day (maybe!)

I was having so much trouble with finding the right photo set-up in our new house (where we have now lived for 3 years!) that I kind of gave up. I just used my phone in my craft room for this one. Sorry.

Also, while I am making lots of cards, my focus has been more on techniques rather than products and challenges. I love all the new things - the Fuse Tool, inter-active cards, Oxide Inks, the layering stamp sets, etc.

For the past couple of days I've been playing with the Distress oxide Inks. I am so crazy about them that I'm hardly sleeping! Here is a background that I made which I used for a card for a sweet Mermaid friend of mine.

She is colored with Copics, the wave is heat embossed on vellum with comic coloring behind and I've used Wink of Stella. Very straight-forward.

Stamps and dies: Neat and Tangled, Mermazing; PTI, What the Doodle - Waves.

Thanks for the visit - keep crafting!





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