Friday, December 31, 2010

Every day is wonderful with you, Bert

It has been a wonderful day. We just returned from seeing Mary Poppins at the Detroit Opera House. What a fantastic production! My son was humming "A Spoonful of Sugar" on the way home and there's nothing like a rousing chorus of "Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious" (yep, had to look that one up) to make the drive fun!

My post today is inspired by the Design Team over at the Colour Q. This scarf is gorgeous and so are the colors. Don't you agree?

Crumb Cake cardstock served as my card base with Basic Black and Very Vanilla layers. The Distressing Essentials Kit created a vintage look on the vanilla shade. "Nature Walk" is a wonderful is a new stamp set available in January. The set includes this fabulous birdcage, eggs, and plate number ... there's more and I can't wait to show you in future posts! My branch is stamped in Old Olive Classic Ink.  The cage and eggs are in Basic Grey Classic Ink.  It's not a color I use often but I must admit it looks wonderful on this bird cage!  My paper is from the Love Letter collection which I adore.  I added tulle to the ribbon and included a fabulous button.

Apple Blossoms (Hostess Set) has this lovely sentiment (stamped in Basic Black) that fit perfectly over my row of eggs.  Finally, adding Basic Pearl Jewels to the tag just seemed right for this card.

Thanks for spending time with me today ... I hope you enjoyed your visit!


Tuesday, December 28, 2010

More Amazement ...

Hello friends.  With vacation days at my disposal this week, I decided to do something that was long overdue.  I thought with the start of a new year, I should freshen my favorite room in the house ... the craft room.  Yesterday I spent the entire day cleaning, organizing, and purging.  I was stunned by the treaures I found!  I had forgotten about so many things and promised myself to use them!  Putting them in a place of "honor" (smack dab in the middle of my work table) ... I couldn't wait to get started!  First, my inspiration - a gorgeous color scheme from The Play Date Cafe (isn't that little deer so sweet?) and a wonderful sketch from The Waltzing Mouse (the second time I used this sketch).

For today's project I began with Crumb Cake cardstock and layered on some DSP from our Deck the Halls collection.  The print fabric at the top was stitched on and is part of the Deck the Halls Fabrics which coordinates with the DSP.  I'm glad I bought both since they retire at the end of this week!  My first "discovery" - buried under my work table in a box - was PAINT!  I thought I only had a couple colors but NO ... I found LOTS!  I admit this shade is a bit dark for the card but I brushed it on around the edges regardless.  (Now that I have so much more space, I think I'll have to go get a lighter shade ... you know "just in case".)  The lace is a little smidgen from my newly arrived goodie box (thanks again, Shirley!) and the wine colored chenille was found just "laying around" ... waiting for me to stumble upon it once again.  Later in the day I opened an envelope and what did I find?  FEATHERS!  So many glorious shimmery colors!  So, I added a couple to my card and I think you may be seeing some more of them in the future.

The sentiment was stamped in Pacific Point Classic Ink as were the flower images at each end.  The greeting is from Because I Care (a Hostess Set) and the little flowers are from the Style Beautiful set.  I added a couple Pearl Jewels as accents.  With all the extra space in my craft room now, Sabrina has begun to move in with some of her supplies.  I look forward to watching her create beautiful things - tucked away in our room together.  She emptied her closet of beautiful shades/weights of yarns and crochet hooks of all sizes!  We just had to stop for a moment to make a couple flowers.  I added a bright blue cordroy button (didn't know I had any left!) to my flower with a length of Natural Hemp.  Today we plan to make some precious little hearts for Valentines Day - so happy to spend this time with her.

Thank you for stopping by ... I hope you find some amazing treasures too!



There are a few things that have recently happened that I find absolutely amazing.  One is the friendship I find here on my blog.  I had no pre-conceived notions of what would happen when I started blogging.  Now I feel as though I have friends who share a common creative spirit all around the world!  I am so honored that Clare Buswell chose me to receive this incredible award!  I am beyond excited and forever thankful for this gift!

Part of accepting this award is to:
1. Thank and link back to the person who gave you this award.  Thank you Clare!
2. Share 8 things about yourself.
3. Pass it on to 8 bloggers.
4. Contact those bloggers and tell them about their award

Eight things about myself?  Oh my ... here goes -

1.  It's quite obvious I love to paper craft.  I have dabbled in many other crafts in the past - sewing (as long as I don't have to follow a pattern), knitting, crocheting, embroidery, and macrame (yes, I too made the plant hangers and the owls with beads for eyes). 
2.  I began playing the cello in 4th grade and was in the orchestra all thru my school years.  My summers were spent playing in the pit orchestra with my small town theater group.
3.  I'm actually a mechanical engineer (funny, huh?).
4.  I love to garden and have no yard.  Yes, that's right ... no grass to mow -  just perennials, annuals, and trees!
5.  I love hockey!  Watching not playing, of course....GO WINGS!  As for playing a sport - I've been a golfer since I was a little girl.
6.  I have a group of dear sweet friends over every month to play with my stamping toys and try new paper techniques.  Some of them I've known for nearly 10 years - when I first became a Stampin' UP demonstrator.  They are the BEST group of ladies you could ever call "friends"!
7.  I love to read and my favorite novels are historical fiction.
8.  My son and I are members of the National Audubon Society and enjoy a number of feeders/bird houses scattered throughout the garden.

Now to share 8 terrific fellow bloggers (in no particular order) with you ... I visit them often!

1. Cherry's Jubilee
2. Artistic Bliss
3. Midnite Lullabies Studio
4. Ginny's Place
5. To scrap or not to scrap
6. What Happens Next
7. Cupcake's Creations
8. Sylvia's Stamp Corner

Thanks for spending time with me and do pay a visit to the ladies listed above.  They would love to hear from you.  I have a project to share with you tomorrow ... see you soon!


Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Gift Kits

Christmas Day is just around the corner and the excitement is building.  Wrapped gifts are beginning to magically appear under the tree.  The stockings will be hung soon and there are cookies to be baked.  Santa has a favorite cookie when he visits this house ... as I am sure he does in yours too.

The motivation for todays post actually comes from all of you.  Visiting my most favorite blogs, I've seen so many fabulous gift giving ideas.  My eyes have feasted on gorgeous gift boxes, embellished gift tags, goodie bags as glorious as the gifts inside them, scrumptous recipes (I want to try every one) ... it's just amazing.  The creativity from each and everyone of you is wonderfully inspirational.  I make frequent visits to Etsy Inspired  ... a terrific site that features a new Etsy artist every week.  There is so much to see on Etsy, I could literally browse for days.  Thankfully, this site spoon-feeds me a little every week, slow enough that I can soak it all in.  This week's Etsy shop is the talented Ling Glass.  Drop-dead gorgeous, I tell you!  The pendant on the left is reversable!  How great is that!?  And this is just a small sample of the beauty there is to see there, you should do yourself a favor and pay them a visit.

So, with the encouragement of my daughter (you can do it Mom!), I tackled Black, White and Red.  The papers used for the gift pouches and the card kit are from the Love Letter collection.  I added some tea dyed small envelopes stamped in Riding Hood Red Classic Ink using the Artistic Etchings stamp set.  Also tucked in my pouch is dyed seam binding, lengths of lace, buttons, a bit of red yarn, and a few decorative stick pins.

The crowns are die cut, distressed a bit at the edges, and stamped with heart-felt sentiments.  The flowers are chipboard (Mix and Match On Board) painted red then "glitterfied" with a Basic Pearl Jewel for the center.  And did you see I used some ephemera!?  I have admired these sweet precious images for ages.  I see them beautifully displayed on your artwork and I am in love with them.  So, I finally took the plunge!  My dear sister-in-law sent me sheets of images - each and every one is gorgeous.

Once again, I am grateful for your visits and enjoy reading your comments.  I hope that you are inspired today to create something beautiful too.


Sunday, December 19, 2010

A Splash of Yellow

Hello friends.  My daughter and I made a list of all the fun "stuff" we want to do over the next two weeks.  There's a new vintage clothing store in town that we have to visit.  Getting our nails done before Christmas is a must.  A trip to Pier One for some last minute stocking stuffers.  A stop at Borders (they have the BEST hot chocolate ever).  Brendan and my husband are going to build a bookcase - the perfect project for my two Boy Scouts.  The list goes on and on ... we're so excited to have this time together!

Today's post was inspired by two challenges.  The Waltzing Mouse has an adorable sketch this week (of course they always do).  And The Play Date Cafe put together a stunning color combination.

Black and white with a splash of color is very difficult for me to get my head around.  I love the look of classic black and white together and the punch of bright color is amazing.  Perhaps the strength of the colors scares me a little since I am one for doing the softer shabby look.  So ... I have to face my fears!  I started with gathering black and white print papers from my scrap drawer.  Following the sketch, I layed out the patterns on Basic Black Cardstock (the base is Whisper White Cardstock).  I added some beautiful white lace to soften the unfinished edges.

The bird is chipboard (Mix & Match On Board) covered in two different yellow prints from the Sunny Garden Designer Series Paper collection.  The wing was covered in Dazzling Diamonds Glitter and the eye is a Black Flourish Jewel.  The crown is die cut and I added Basic Rhinestone Jewels (you'll see a couple more on the tag too).  My yellow ribbon is embellished with Black Raven Lace and a button.  The Jewelry Tag Punch is the perfect size for my sweet little sentiment.

Whew, that was tough but I'm pleased with the results!  Thanks for visiting and enjoy the rest of your day!


Friday, December 17, 2010

Home for the Holidays ....

Today was the last day of school for my little ones.  They are so excited to be home for "two whole weeks!" ... as they say it.  I'm excited too.  There will be lots of reading, cuddling in front of the fire, watching old movies (the best kind), baking, and of course - crafts.  I can't wait to spend time with them.

We made sweet treats for the teachers this year.  The kids were thrilled to hand them out today.  It all began with some color inspiration.  Isn't this a wonderful combination from the Design Team at Colour Q?

I began with Elegant Soiree papers to capture the blue in the color palette.  Cut to width and stitched on the sides, it makes a pretty patterned pouch to hold your treasures.  For this project it's Totally Chocolate Chocolate Chip Cookies!  They are delicious and are part of my inspiration colors!  I put two in each Large Cello Bag, slipped them into my paper pocket and tied it all up with a Real Red Striped Ribbon.

My ribbon embellishments were created with our Snowflake Punch cut from Whisper White Cardstock and "glitterfied" with Dazzling Diamonds Glitter.  The buttons are a gorgeous shade of Bermuda Blue.  Using a die to cut out a doily, I softened the edges with Crumb Cake Classic Ink.  The polka-dot print is a retired pattern in Kiwi Kiss color and a 2 1/2" Circle Punch was the perfect size.  A Scallop Circle Punch was matched to my red stamped image from last years Vintage Labels stamp set.  The center sentiment is from the Holly Jolly Rub-Ons  collection.  Watching Sabrina work on these little details brought back such great memories.  I used to LOVE rub-ons when I was young .... to be honest - I still do!  These little cuties were the perfect size for my 1" Circle Punch and I raised them up with a Dimensional.

These were such a joy to make with the kids.  They loved helping put it all together ... even the baking!  They were so proud to hand them to their teachers today - and I was proud of both of them.

I'm glad you had the time to stop by.  Be sure you go see the amazing projects at ColourQ this week and thanks so much for visiting with me again!


Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Three Little Words ...

Hello friends.  I am so excited ... today I got a "care package" all the way from Virginia where my dear sister-in-law lives!  She is a fabulous clay artist and I am in awe of her ability to create such beautiful pieces.  She creates dolls with the faces she sculpts ... they are whimsical, witty, and wonderful.  Well, she sent me a big ol' box full of fabrics, feathers, buttons, ephemera, and lots and lots and lots of LACE!  Yep ... LACE!  You'll see that the button and lace on today's project is from her .... love ya' Shirley!  The color combination from Cupcake's Creations this week is gorgeous - don't you agree?

My card base is Very Vanilla cardstock layered with papers from the Sunny Garden collection and a polka dot from my scrap drawer.  The same cardstock was used to create the stamped "tag" that lies across the middle.  Both vanilla's were antiqued with Distressing Essentials.  My sentiment is from the Three Little Words stamp set and is done in Chocolate Chip Classic Ink.  Interest is added along the right with a Scallop Trim Border Punch.  A lovely delicate lace helps to soften the lower edge.

I dyed my seam binding with a coral ink and used a beautiful button to embellish the bow.  An old scrap of coral print paper was perfect for the heart made with the Full Heart Punch.  I layered it on vanilla and trimmed around the shape.  The sweet little heart in the middle was easy with a Small Heart Punch and adding the Pearl Jewel ... the perfect finishing touch.

I hope you enjoyed your visit ... good night!


Sunday, December 12, 2010

Hugs & Kisses

We have about 6 inches of snow on the ground and another 2 inches expected overnight.  My children are thrilled and are hoping for no school tomorrow.  If the snowfall ends early enough and the plows have time to clear the streets ... I'm sure they will have class.  Not wanting to spoil their fun, I remain quiet and recall the times when I wished for the same.  To be honest, I still do - I can't think of a better way to start the week than warm and cozy at home with my children while it blows and snows outside.

The Waltzing Mouse has a cute sketch for you to try and Moxie Fab World has shared a stunning image of purples along with a little bling.  Can I have that ring?  It's sure to fit me!

The circle in the sketch made me instantly reach for a small doily I had laying around ... just waiting for me to use it.  I sponged the edges first with Crumb Cake Classic Ink to age it a bit.  The pattern papers with touches of purple are from the Lap of Luxury collection....gorgeous.  The large round chipboard piece is covered in a neutral print and "glitterfied" (yes, it's a word - at least in my world) with Mod Podge and Dazzling Diamonds Glitter.  A large round circle of sparkle ... just like my ring.  Right Cath?

Four hearts from different purple prints (again Lap of Luxury) were punched with the Full Heart Punch and stitched through the middle.  They fold up nicely to show the patterns beneath and look lovely layered on a scalloped circle of Whisper White Cardstock ... sponged to soften the edges and match the doily.  The purple buttons come from both the Regal Buttons and Subtles Button collections.  I added a bit of Natural Hemp to each.  The tag is tea dyed and my sentiment from the All Holidays stamp set is so sweet stamped in Elegant Eggplant Classic Ink.  I think it compliments the hearts perfectly, don't you?

Time for some hot chocolate in front of the fire.  Thank you for stopping by!


Thursday, December 9, 2010

So Sweet in Pink and Blue ...

It has been a busy week, my friends.  Family visits, Holiday cheer, and a bit of Christmas shopping done.  How are you doing on your list?  I'm getting through mine very slowly this year.  It was a welcome relief to spend some time in my craft room ... and make a little something to share with you today.  Mona never fails to inspire the artist in all of us with a collection of beautiful images on her blog Cupcake's Creations.  All in a palette of pink, light blue, and tan ... they remind me of robins eggs, cotton candy, and days gone by when life was slower and pleasures simple.  Beautiful.

For my project I began with Baja Breeze cardstock layered with Crumb Cake cardstock.  Color and pattern came from Designer Series papers.  The pink polka dot print is from my scrap drawer and the blue stripe is part of the Elegant Soiree collection.  The papers in this package are gorgeous - you should take a look!  A "doily" was die cut from Very Vanilla cardstock and sponged with Crumb Cake Classic Ink.  Another dig through my scrap drawer produced a sweet checked background paper in vanilla and tan.  I stamped it with the wreath from our Welcome Christmas stamp set ... do you think I could ever tire of this set?  I should just leave it out on my table until after the Holidays ... they have been my "go to" stamps for weeks!  "Merry Christmas" was added with Basic Black Classic Ink and comes from the All Holidays set.

Embellished with lightly dyed seam binding, a soft pink felt flower, buttons from the Candy Cane Big Designer and Soft Subtles collections, and of course Basic Rhinestone Jewels ... this card is sweet and simple.

You'll find other Holiday greetings from all over the world at Simon Says Stamp and Show.  There are so many fabulous things to see ... be sure you spend some time there.

It was wonderful of you to stop by today.  I hope you enjoyed your visit!


Thursday, December 2, 2010

Blue Christmas

Hello friends.  Have you finished your Holiday shopping?  Not me.  I've started but have much more to do.  I'm trying to think "handmade" this year.  Something made from the heart for those I love.  There are so many ideas in my head and things I want to try ... I'm sure to run out of time before I complete them all ... it seems to happen every year.  A Christmas wish to all of you - more time to do the things you love for those you love.

2 Sketches 4 You has a wonderful sketch to guide us.  You may see a tag sketch but I see a tag on a card ... fun how we see things differently sometimes.  The City Crafter shares a gorgeous photo of a festive ornament.  The shades of blue and turquoise against the pearly white are so very pretty and the dried branches add a natural earthy element while the glitter sparkles in the light.  Simply elegant and so beautiful.

Beginning with Very Vanilla cardstock, I softened the card with a rounded Corner Punch and our Distressing Essentials Kit.  Designer Series Papers from the Blueberry Crisp Collection were perfect for my Blue Christmas inspired card.  Using a softer looking paper for the background while my tag was made of bright shades and a louder pattern.  Do you like my tea-stained envelope?  I found a stack of plain vanilla envelopes in my supply closet and was so excited!  I brewed up a bowl of tea and set them to soaking.  I have a couple dozen of these tea-stained beauties now - and they are the perfect size for gift cards.  Using Baja Breeze Classic ink and images of snowflakes from our Northern Hearts Hostess stamp set, some color was added.  I also found a sweet border stamp from the retired Pedaling Past stamp set ... you'll see it along the bottom of the envelope.

I just can't get enough of crowns - I love them!  For the greeting, a beautiful script message from the All Holidays set captures my Christmas wishes.  The ribbon is scrunched seam binding dyed ever-so-lightly in Baja Breeze ink.  I wanted a soft wispy feel to my bow.  A button from Deck the Halls Big Designer Buttons was tied on with blue yarn and a turquoise stick pin gives a splash of bright color.

Lace from the fabric store is embellished with a chipboard star from On Board Mix and Match.  I always paint my chipboard before using it.  The paint dries immediately and it covers any imperfections while also coloring the edges.  Mod Podge and a lovely shade of blue pulled from our Fine Cosmo Glitter collection made the cutest little star and a Basic Pearl Jewel was the finishing touch.

Once again, I thank you all so much for stopping by and spending some time with me ... enjoy your day!


Saturday, November 27, 2010

A crowning cup of tea ...

Hello again friends.  I love days that give me time to play with my toys and to visit my favorite blogs.  Before I begin baking Christmas cookies, I put together another post to share with you.  Mona is so talented and her blog (Cupcake's Creations) is just beautiful.  She has a fabulous color palette this week of red, brown, and tan.  The team at The City Crafter is taking us to Seattle - ok, not literally - their challenge is to feature a cup, mug, or teacup.  I don't drink coffee or tea (you'll only find me using it to dye cardstocks, ribbons, and textiles).  However, I do enjoy the delicate beauty of a china teacup such as the one I used today.  

Very Vanilla cardstock is my card base.  Riding Hood Red cardstock became a mat for two Designer Series Papers ...  Deck the Halls and Love Letter.  I stamped the flourish from Baroque Motifs to add a touch of color.  The ribbon is Early Espresso Striped (appropriate for this card - don't you think?).  I finally used one of my new crown dies and I'm thrilled!  Cut from Very Vanilla cardstock and sponged with Crumb Cake Classic Ink - I love it!  The teacup from Timeless Treasures is stamped with Riding Hood Red Classic Ink as is "Hello" from Chic Boutique.  I raised the teacup on Dimensionals and added Basic Pearl Jewel Accents to my greeting.

A couple lengths of Chantilly Crochet Lace and creme tulle tied on with red hemp adds detail to the flower.  The flower was made from three flower punches and Very Vanilla cardstock.  I have created so many of these you'll think I'm addicted ... which I am!  I sprayed it with Vanilla Shimmer Smooch Spritz (the effect is gorgeous - click on the image for a better view) and added a Basic Pearl Jewel Accent to the center.

Time to bake with my dear daughter!  Thank you for stopping by - I hope you enjoyed your time here!


Friday, November 26, 2010


Hello!  We had a wonderful Thanksgiving yesterday and I hope you did too.  With family at the the table we talked, laughed, enjoyed a good meal and each others company.  It was so nice to see everyone and get caught up on their lives.  We couldn't have asked for a more perfect day ... well, I guess if the Lions would have won that would have made for a more perfect day.

A challenge blog that is new to me, but maybe not to you, is 2 Sketches 4 You.  The Design Team is very talented and the sketch so helpful.  I chose to use their inspiration this week along with the always gorgeous color combination at the Colour Q.  The ladies there never cease to amaze me!

I began with a square card made of Very Vanilla cardstock and antiqued the edges with Distressing Essentials.  The mustard background paper was added along with Deck The Halls Designer Fabric.  Designer Series Papers from the beautiful Deck the Halls collection edged by the Scallop Edge Border Punch became my next set of layers.  The reindeer Dasher is stamped in Cherry Cobbler Classic ink and embellished with Basic Pearls Jewel Accents then raised with Dimensionals.  A Corner Punch helped to soften the look.

For my ribbon I used twill dyed in tea ... I think I let it soak a little too long and will pull it out sooner next time.  The tag started out as Very Vanilla cardstock but I dyed that in tea too.  Same result - note to self: one less tea bag and set the kitchen timer next time!  It was a fun process and you should give it a whirl if you have never tried.  The crown from Artistic Etchings was stamped with More Mustard Classic ink and the sentiment in Cherry Cobbler.  I dyed a Fleurette crocheted flower in water with drops of color from a More Mustard Classic Ink Refill.  After it dried I added buttons from Deck the Halls Big Designer buttons and Designer Buttons Regals Collection tied on with some old red hemp.

Thanks for stopping by today ... I hope you enjoyed your visit.  I'll be back tomorrow with some more ideas to share - good night!


Sunday, November 21, 2010

Pure and Simple

Hello everyone.  We have the bare bones of our Christmas tree up with the little ones waiting patiently for me to go get some new lights.  How do they burn out sitting in a box all year?  It's a mystery.  But before I go on my errands today, I wanted to share some inspiration with you.

There are so many talented artists in this field of stamping and creating, I am in awe of their work.  Surely I spend too much time wandering through different blogs and challenges amazed at what I see.  The City Crafter challenge this week is "Little Children" ... such sweetness to see there.  Play Date Cafe combines the colors of red, olive, and turquoise into a gorgeous combination.  The Waltzing Mouse sketch this week is simplicity at it's best and I tried to do the same ... keep it simple.  Here's a look at my inspiration -

Digging through my drawer of scraps, I found my three colors.  We often think of red and green together, especially this time of year, but adding just a little turquoise makes the colors sing!  The bow is made from my favorite ribbon (it ties like a dream) Old Olive Striped Ribbon.  I know it's a bit big but with so little embellishment on this simple layout, I thought the card could "carry the weight" ... so to speak.  I added another touch of red with a button from the  Candy Cane Big Designer Buttons collection tied on with Natural Hemp Twine.

I used the children sledding image from Welcome Christmas stamped in Basic Black Classic ink on Very Vanilla cardstock.  The silhouettes in this stamp set are just beautiful.  Various dies along with our Decorative Label Punch created the layered shapes.  Edges were antiqued with the Distressing Essentials kit.  And I just couldn't resist placing a few Basic Pearls above the silhouettes and then raising the focal point with Dimsensionals.

Time to go get some lights and garland for the house ... thanks for visiting with me today!