Monday, February 23, 2009

Bright Layout and Blog Candy!

I love the bright colors in this layout! Of course, the subject is one of my favorite things too. The flash glared the pictures a bit but that is my 3rd grandchild, Easton. I used Pumpkin Pie and Certainly Celery Designer Series Ppaer as well as Basic Black and Tempting Turquoise cardstock.

A fun (although slightly time consuming) technique I used on this layout that you might want to try when doing titles is to stamp an outline stamp like the Jumbo Outline Alphabet onto some of the scraps from your page and cut them out. Your title will match the layout perfectly because it is from the same paper as the rest of your layout. When cutting out letters that have centers like b, e, o etc, just use a hand-held circle punch to make a hole that you can get the tip of your scissors into to trim it out to the line.

I cut lots of circles and layered some of them and tied knots of coordinating ribbon here and there to finish out the layout. Then, when I had it all put together I took my white Signo pen (I love that thing!) and dotted around EVERYTHING. If you click on the layout it will bring a bigger image and you can see the dots. It really finishes off the layout nicely and didn't take that long. You might have to stop every few minutes to uncross your eyes though!

Hummm, I'm thinking I should give something away a lucky person who posts a comment about my layout or my blog in general. I'm trying to make my blog mostly stampin' Up layouts and cards but on Sunday I usually post a family post so you can get to know me a little better but not have too many non-stamping posts. I'm finishing up my second month of blogging. What do you think? What am I doing right and what could I do to improve or make my blog one you will want to visit often?

I'll have one of the grandkids draw a name from everyone who posts a comment. Your email address is not listed when you post so be sure to put your email address so I can get ahold of you if you win. I have a brand new, unmounted, never inked Puns From the Past stamp set that is a $27.95 value for the winner! I'll hold the drawing next Monday, March 2.

Good luck!

Saturday, February 21, 2009

Fiskars Crop, Cave City KY

I went to a fun crop today, a crop sponsored by Fiskars. They are 360 years old this year, it's pretty cool to find someone who has been in business that long. They know how to throw a crop too. We did 4 classes and there were over 200 people there. Here I am working on a 12 X 12 layout that I really liked.

This is about half of the class and many of them are my friends from the Sassy Scrappers and Stampers group. Lots of orange today! (even though TN lost to KY today too) It started snowing and we decided that since we had so long to go we wouldn't stay for the crop after the classes. We left at 4:45 and it snowed most of the way home but stopped just before we got to our exit about 6:45.
BTW, my husband is still limping around but his ribs are hurting more than his knee. He is better though. Brandy was telling me at the crop today that her husband fell through their ceiling one time too. I guess it is an occurance that is more common than you would think. Maybe people it happens to just don't like to talk about it!

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Help Needed

Did you know that according to the New York Times (12/22/08), the recession is a great time for Craft Sales? People are turning to creating gifts rather than buying them, and now is a great time to join Stampin' Up! to share your creativity with others!

During Sale-a-Bration (February and March) the Stampin' Up! Starter Kit is 15% off AND when you join by March 31 you can choose any stamp set (up to $47.95) in the new Spring/Summer Idea Book and Catalog FREE! This is really like saving 40% off the regular price of the kit!!!

I would love to have you join my Stamping Family, so click here for more information...or call me and I can answer your questions! If you are ready to join, email me and I'll take you through it step by step. I will help train you and provide ongoing support to help you in your business. Whether you want to make extra money for your family or want to be a hobby demonstrator to get Stampin' Up stamps and inks at a discount with a low monthly requirement, you will love being a Stampin' Up demonstrator. I know I love it!

Sunday, February 15, 2009

A Big Hole

My husband and I were up in the attic moving some boxes and clearing out some of Mom's stuff. I said something about a stack of National Geographics that we could take to recycle and went back to the other end of the attic to get another box. I heard a strange, kind of loud noise and my husband yelled. I asked if he was ok and I heard another noise and he yelled again. I thought he had fallen down the ladder!

I ran over, looking down stairs and he moaned from under the eaves. He had accidentally stepped where there was no plywood and fell through the ceiling! (don't feel bad if you are laughing, I am too) He was just hanging on the trusses by the arm pits! So, I'm standing there asking if he has broken any bones trying not to laugh even though I was worried about him being hurt and thinking about having to fix what I was sure was a huge hole in the ceiling downstairs. Dang, why didn't I take a camera up there???

Poor guy, nothing seemed broken (other than the ceiling) but I had him soak in some Epsom salts. He is limping around pretty bad now. He twisted his knee and bruised his ribs. Notice in the picture on the top that was taken from the attic, you can see the bear on the bed below. If we had known he was right over the bed it would have been easier for him to just drop on down instead of climbing out of the hole and then having to struggle down the ladder!

I wonder if he will climb back down the hole and hang by his arm pits again to let me take a picture. I guess I can settle for a picture of him on his crutches.

BTW, the hole looks MUCH bigger downstairs looking up than it did upstairs looking down.

Friday, February 13, 2009

Stamping With Bleach

First of all, be careful not to get the bleach on your clothes (duh). As soon as you can, clean the bleach off of the stamp using an alcohol free baby wipe or soap and water. The bleach won’t hurt your rubber stamps but it will dry them out if it is left on too long so you want to limit the time the bleach is on the rubber. I don’t know about the safety of bleach on clear stamps but it is safe for rubber stamps.

Fold a paper towel and put it on a plastic or foam plate. Add enough bleach that your stamp is noticeably wet when you stamp it onto the paper towel but not so much that it doesn’t leave a crisp, clear outline when you stamp it onto the cardstock. The bleach evaporates fairly quickly so if you are stamping a lot you may have to add some bleach as you go. You use this makeshift “ink pad” like you would a regular inkpad. Just stamp onto it with your stamp and then stamp on your paper.

It does take a minute or so to completely dry and bleach out the paper completely. Be careful not to smear the bleach before it dries. Generally, darker paper will show the image better than lighter paper and the bleach will color the paper in a yellowish color. It will turn green on blue paper like on this layout and will turn orange on a bright red paper.

Notice on the sample colors I stamped how the bleach turns yellow on the green shades of cardstock but on the very deep green and the black it turns a very beautiful gold color.
On the pale yellow and peach it turns white. Interesting effects. I stamped a couple of the colors with a more solid stamp so you could see how that would look. It is hard to get good coverage of the bleach on the stamp but I kind of like the mottled look I got when I put less bleach on the brown and dark blue. The stamping is nearly imperceptible on the light blue but I was surprised on how well it showed up on the pale yellow.

Have fun experimenting with this technique but wear old clothes! Something else to try if you like to mess with your husband’s mind – use this technique when he is around and when he asks what you are doing (the smell of the bleach will surely bring questions but you may have to prompt him if he doesn’t ask) just say that you know you can’t afford EVERY beautiful color that Stampin’ Up carries so you are just using something you already have to stamp with. Either he will feel sorry for you and say that you can buy some more ink pads or he will be amazed at what a wonderful, thrifty wife he has. Either way sounds like a winner to me!

The Whole Layout

Here is the layout we did at the Stamp group meeting last night. It was a lot of fun. We used every circle punch tht Stampin' Up sells! We also used bleach to stamp the flowers on the blue circles. It was kind of funny that the color of the Pacific Point blue cardstick when bleached out matched the Gable Green cardstock perfectly. If I had planned that it wouldn't have matched at all!

First I punched the bottom of the long side of the white cardstock (which measures 8 1/2 X 9 1/4) with the Eyelet Border punch and added the strips of Good Morning Sunshine patterned paper (they meaure 7 1/2 X 3). After adhering the white squares to my background paper I wheeled around the sides and top of the layout.
If you have never used a border punch, it has an amazing effect to your layout or card. It has a guide on each side of the punch so you can line it up perfectly to get a smooth, even border. Hopefully the picture shows what I mean.

If you put the 2 sheets of cardstock together first and wheel the whole thing at once it will match at the center top of the layout. To wheel this long of a pattern you really need to have an ink cartridge in the wheel handle so you don't have to keep stopping and re-inking the wheel and trying to match it up. Be sure to keep the wheel flat on the paper although you can hide a multitude of mistakes with all the punched circles! It will be easier to keep the wheel flat if you stand up to do that part.

Also, start and stop the wheel off your layout. That way there won't be a faded out part at each end. For wheeling an entire layout you will need 2 sheets of blotter paper or typing paper so it will cover both edges.

A tip for punching holes in your circles: Punch the smaller circle first and then hold the larger punch upside down and punch it either centered or off-set like I did the circles on the layout. This makes it easier because you won't be trying to hold the very edge of the circle while you punch the smaller circle in it.

I used the flowers from the pretties kit in one corner of the layout. I put the half-pearl centers on the flowers with mini glue dots. The flowers come in white and you can use your ink pad to color them so they match the layout or card colors. Pretty cool! If you want the whole flower the same color you can put a few drops of the reinker and a few drops of water (depending on how dark you want the color) in a plastic baggie and put the flowers in and smoosh the color into them. If you want a more subtle color or varigated colors or multiple colors you can use the sponge daubers and apply the color from your ink pad.

I did the flowers on the layout 3 different ways so you could see 3 options for coloring flowers using the daubers. I also did one with a yellow center to show the 2 tone option. Obviously, when using yellow and blue, you don't want to let them overlap or you will get green. If you want a band of green in the middle, no problem but if you don't you will have to be more careful applying the second color than I was!

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Where's the Video???

I'm trying to get the video posted but there was some kind of computer thingy I had to order so it will probably be a couple of more days. In the mean time, you can see some videos on my website. Click on the Stampin' Up catalog over there on the right and it will take you to my website (not the top one that says Sale-a-Bration, the second one that links to my Stampin' Up website). Scroll down to the Featured Project at the lower left side of the home page. There are several pages of projects and 3 of them have videos. I absolutely promise that they will be much better than mine!

Let's see, I need to include a picture with my post, right?? Here is a sneak peek of the layout we are doing Thursday night. I'll post the whole layout after the class for those of you who can't come.

Elaine Wright

Friday, February 6, 2009

Emerging Color

I made another card using the emerging color technique. I even let Wendy video tape me making it. That was an experience! There are some things we definitely need to work on before making anymore videos. I was planning to put this on Utube but I'm thinking it isn't good enough. There was this awful tapping (not the times I was tapping the stamp on the ink pads or paper) that we didn't know was going on as we taped but Wendy figured out it was the tri-pod when she moved the camera. I wonder if W-D40 would help that.
Of course, the phone rang in the middle of it, I'll have to turn off all ringers before taping again! There are still a couple of things I need to work on before I can post the video (like I have no clue how to do it and have to wait till Curtis can show me) but I thought I'd post a picture of the card so you can get a close look at it before you watch the video. I know it looks like a dark blue cardstock but it was white. You will see how to do it soon, tomorrow I hope!

Monday, February 2, 2009

Convention Swap

This is the card I did for the convention card swap last year. I used the Embrace Life set which is one of the most versatile sets I've ever seen, I love that set! I also used one of my other favorites, the white Signo gel pen. I had them about half finished when I left home so I took them on the plane and worked on them on the way.

We had a 2 hour layover in Dallas so we walked to the terminal we were leaving from and I worked on them in the airport until time to board and continued while we were on the flight from Dallas to Vegas. The next day we had the long drive from Vegas to Salt Lake and I was able to finish them by the time we got there. I guess it was a good thing it took so long to get from TN to UT so I could get them finished! Ever the procrastinator I am.

Since I was making 150 cards I decided to use all those scraps I had of Certainly Celery cardstock. It is my favorite color that Stampin' Up has so I use it a lot and had a bunch of scraps. A lot of them were about 1/2" wide so I decided to go with the strips over white cardstock for the background. I stamped the leafy image from the stamp set on the white before adhering the strips and inked the edges with Certainly Celery ink. I also inked aaaaallllllllll of those strips and the pieces that I stamped the flowers on. No wonder these cards took so long!
I stamped the "Embrace Life" sentiment with the craft Whisper White ink but all of the other white is where I highlighted the flowers with the Signo pen. I wish the picture was better. Like I keep saying, I either have to get a better digital camera or figure out how to take good pictures of cards and layouts with my SLR camera.

Sunday, February 1, 2009

How's the Weather??

Although ice storms can be very bad, they are also beautiful. These pictures don't show it very well because it was still pretty grey outside but this is what it looked like off my deck Tuesday morning. Ignore the dates, I haven't figured out how to put the real date into my camera! I need a new one so why bother to learn, huh.

We woke up at 5:15AM and were without power for a few hours but we just threw another log on the fire and lit the lantern and visited. It was kind of nice actually, not having the tv on or anything.

We were very lucky because many of our neighbors to the North in KY are still without power nearly a week later. I'm sure we could have lasted a week without power but the cold showers would have been rough!