Saturday 27 December 2014

A Poinsettia's For Life, not Just for Christmas - Version 2!

I hope everyone had an excellent Christmas, with lots of crafting goodies?  No doubt, with Christmas over, you're about to put away your Christmas crafty goodies for another year. However, don't be too quick to pack them all away.  I said this last year and I'll say it again, A Poinsettia's For Life, not Just for Christmas!  Look how I've used a PSX Poinsettia Stamp for a Get Well Card, instead of a Christmas Card.
Card Recipe:
Stamp: PSX
Colouring Mediums: Memento London Fog, Promarkers
Paper and Card: Oyster plain card, HOTP, Satin Elegance
Tools: Tonic Studios Indulgence Boudoir Square,Verso Holly Rings, 10mm Corner Rounder, Super Trimmer, Grand Calibur 
Embellishments: lace, double satin ribbon, flatback pearls, crystal button, hand-made hatpins

This card uses a "stamp outside the frame" die-cut technique, as well as decoupage.  I stamped my image twice onto Satin Elegance stamping card with Memento ink, leaving plenty of space around the first image.  I coloured them both in with Promarker pens, fully colouring the first image but on the second only the poinsettias.  I fussy-cut out the poinsettias as a decoupage layer to add dimension to my card.

This is the first time I've used my Indulgence Boudoir Square die to create the lovely trellis mat detail.  I defy anyone to use this die and not be over-whelmed by the urge to add flat-back gems.  As this was a Get Well Soon card, I didn't want it to be too bling-y, so I used some lovely flat-back pearls this time.

My sentiment was computer generated and die cut with a label tag, then washed over with a Fresh Meadow Promarker pen, from the 2012 Special Edition set.

However, a little bit of sparkle always adds some cheer if you're feeling under the weather, and this crystal button sure does add some sparkle.

I've had these little bronze flower beads for ages but this is their first outing, and they work perfectly to tie the hatpins into the colour-scheme of the card.

If you'd like to see the original version of A Poinsettia's for Life, Not Just for Christmas, click here.

Please do leave me a comment, I love to know who's visited this page and what you think! Pin It Now!

Wednesday 10 December 2014

Christmas Dance

It's the launch of the new theme over on an Oldie but A Goodie Challenge and this fortnight it's Winter, so I thought this Christmas Dance Card in warm winter colours was just the thing!
Card Recipe:
Stamp: LOTV Christmas Dance
Colouring Mediums: Memento London Fog, Promarker Pens
Paper and Card: Neenah White, Christine Adolph
Tools: Spellbinders Labels 18 and Snowflake Dies
Embellishments: double sided adhesive sheets, microbeads, glitter, rhinestone crystals, May Art double-sided stitched ribbon.

I know from the outset that I wanted to create a snowflake wreath as a frame for the main focal image.  I cut a variety of snowflakes from my patterned paper, including some that I had covered with a double-sided adhesive sheet.  Once die cut, I covered some in irridescent glitter and some in microbeads, and I think this combination of plain, beaded and glittered snowflakes adds a lot of texture and interest to the card.

My main image is a LOTV stamp called Christmas Dance.  I'm not a huge fan of "cutsie- children" stamps generally, but I am a fan of having a varied range of images to hand in my crafting stash so have found a place for a select few "cuties", this being one of them.  

I stamped the image with Memento London Fog, which gives a softer image than using black.  I coloured her with Promarkers to echo the colours of my Christine Adolp patterned papers and accented the image with glitter and a festive pom-pom (I do love a festive pom-pom)!

I hope you'll join us at an Oldie but a Goodie Challenge, where you need to use an item from your stash that's over 6 months old. On my card, everything I've used is over 6 months old!

Don't forget, if you haven't already done so, you can enter into my 100th Blogpost Celebratory Prize Draw for the chance to win some great Tonic Studios Prizes -details here

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Tuesday 9 December 2014

No Dies Required Champagne Christmas Card

I thought I would share with you today a Christmas Card that looks die cut but isn't!  So put away your grand calibure or big shot, all you need is a little PC know-how, your printer, a craft knife and metal ruler!
Card Recipe:
Tools: PC, printer, craft knife, metal ruler
Paper and Card: Stardream Card, printable vellum, acetate 
Embellishments: Flatback crystals, ribbon bow
To make this card, I started by creating a word document on my PC and inserting a triangle basic shape.  I inserted the text I wanted to use, changing the font and font size until I was happy with the fit. I used double line spacing as I knew I wanted to decorate with crystals.  Then I printed out the message onto printable vellum and left it to dry thoroughly.

To make the card, I trimmed out the "champagne glass" by simply cutting out the triangle of text from vellum plus a corresponding smaller triangle for the glass base.  The stem was made from a narrow strip of acetate.

I decorated the printed vellum with rows of sparkling rhinestones before attaching it to the card base.  This gave me an area which I could dot with glue from behind to adhere the vellum to the card without it showing through.

I've kept this very clean and simple, but you could also quickly add some 3D gloss "bubbles" too.  My card is a Christmas card but the concept could easily be adapted for other occassions too.

Just goes to prove that you don't need new dies for a new card idea!  Hope you enjoyed this quick post and that all your Christmas preparations are well in hand.
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Sunday 23 November 2014

Red Door & White Wreath Christmas Card

Why is it that a Red Front Door is festive, whereas any other colour is just plain wrong?  I understand why post boxes are red, and obviously a robin needs a red breast, and even Rudolph a red nose.  However, I have no idea why a Christmassy door just has to be red, but it does!  Anyhow, I hope you like my festive Red Door and White Wreath Christmas Card.
Card Recipe:
Paper and Card: Centura Pearl White card, Red Linen textured
Tools: Tonic Studios Floral Crafters Tool Kit, Verso Tiara Corner, Domed Window, Window Box, Christmas Cracker and Branches Dies, Grand Calibur 
Embellishments: double satin ribbon, pearl strands, rhinestone crystals, crystal button, handmade hatpins

First of all, I wanted to give you a nice close-up of the new Tonic Studios Verso Tiara Corner Dies. These dies have a separate outer cutting edge, meaning you can choose whether to cut out the entire corner as a die cut, or create a laser-cut finish into the cardstock (which is what I've done).  Hope you can pick up the lovely embossed detail too.

Now, I think it's important to be able to use your dies in lots of different ways, without your cards looking the same.  Dies are an investment so it's important to get lots of use from them.  This festive Christmas card was created from a variety of dies but only the sentiment was actually a Christmas die!
I made my Christmas Wreath by using die cuts from my Window Box and Branch Dies. As I wanted quite a compact wreath, I cut some of the sprigs in half.  I used eight of each design and shaped the sprigs with my new Floral Crafters Tool Kit to create dimension and depth.

It's been a while, but my beloved hatpins have made a return, along with a bling-tastic rhinestone button.  I've combined this with a cheery red ribbon and ribbon bow.  Speaking of ribbon, that's the theme for this fortnight's challenge over at an Oldie But A Goodie, or you could use Lace or even combine Ribbon and Lace!  Ribbons and lace are staple items in my craft stash, so I never have a problem finding an item to use over 6 months old when the theme is this fortnight's challenge.  If you have lots of stash to use up, why not pop over to the challenge and join in the fun.
Here's one final look at my card, can you guess that I used my domed window die to create the door?  I will be posting a tutorial on how to do this in the near future.

I would like to enter this card into the following challenges:
Crafty Calender - All Things Christmas
Paper Crafting Journey - Bling it Up
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Friday 21 November 2014

House Mouse Sweet Lilacs

Now that it's turning a bit chillier, I thought I'd share a card that reminds me that Spring will be with us at before too long!
House Mouse Sweet Lilacs
Card Recipe:
Tools: Tonic Studios Indulgence Boudior Square Base DieSquare Layering DiesScallop Square Layering DiesEvery Day Sentiments 1 DiesGrand Calibur
Digi Stamp: House Mouse Triple CD - Joanna Sheen
Paper and Card: Stardream Card
Embellishments: Flatback pearls and crystals, handmade hat pins
For the House Mouse digi stamp, I cropped the image to the size of my die before printing it.  This means that although the origianal image was oblong, I was able to create a square focal, with a plain edge all the way around it.
My background uses one of my favourite techniques using the lattice Boudoir Base die in lilac stardream card stock along a contrasting frame from oyster stardream card.  

Finally, I had to add a couple of handmade hatpins, don't forget to check out my two tutorials on Creating Hatpins and the aptly named follow-up, More Decorative Hatpins for a simple guide to creating your own embellishments. Pin It Now!

Friday 7 November 2014

Clean & Simple Fairy Silhouette Card

I think the title says it all for this card!
Card Recipe:
Paper and Card: Oyster Wove, First Edition
Tools: Tonic Studios Die Sets - Fae Hideaway Indulgence Semi Dies,  Grand Calibur
Embellishment: Flatback Pearls

I simply trimmed an A4 piece of card to 14.8cm wide then scored it in half.  I opened it back up again and cut the Fae Hideaway Indulgence Semi Die using both of the semi inside dies but only one of the outer dies. Once embossed, I then adding a pretty First Edition backing paper to the inside of the card and added a sprinkling of flatback pearls and a butterfly die cut from an off-cut of patterned paper.

Despite the intricate swirls of this die, I actually think it really lends itself to clean and simple cards, (you can see another example here), what do you think? Pin It Now!

Tuesday 21 October 2014

Too Cute to Spook - Halloween Window Card

Every year, I take part in a Halloween Swap on a Craft forum that I belong to, and it's one of my favourite swaps of the year.  However, as Halloween is just once a year, I try to not spend too much cash on craft stash just for that occasion and today's card is a case in point.  The only exclusively Halloween element on this card is the main stamped image, everything else has been adapted "spookify" it!
Card Recipe:
Stamps: Inkadinkadoo, Joanna Sheen's House Mouse
Tools: Tonic Studios Doomed Window Die,  Tonic Studios Window Basket Die  Tonic Studios Label Die, Cameo Silhouette, Grand Calibur
Colouring Mediums: Versmark Ink Pad, Versafine Black Ink Pad, Promarker Pens, Cosmic Shimmer Mist, Moon Glow Embossing Powder, Distress Ink Weathered Wood
Paper and Card: WRMK, Textured, Joanna Sheen's Elegance Satin, Velvet Paper, Opal Vellum
Embellishments: Tooth pick, foliage, silver-tone charm, string, bakers twine, crystals
To create the stamped scene, I cut a piece of stamping card slightly smaller than my window die, and punched out a 1" circle mask from a post-it note. I checked the position of my mask against the window die cut, then lightly coloured the stamping card with weathered wood distress ink.  After removing the mask, I stamped my witch using Versafine black , so that she appeared in silhouette against the moon.  Finally, I spritzed the entire image lightly with cosmic shimmer mist.

As this is a window scene looking from the inside to outdoors, my vellum blind needed to be proud of the window.  I cut the decorative edge with my favourite gothic border punch, and created the velvet "pelmet" by die- cutting some velvet paper and cardstock with the window box die that coordinates with the window die (but turned upside down).

They say that necessity is the mother of invention and as I do like making my own embellishments, and I had fun creating this witchy-broom as a bespoke Halloween decoration.  I used some sprigs of floristry foliage, which I pressed into my Versamark ink pad then coated in gorgeous two-toned moon glow embossing powder (midnight pewter obsidian).  When I heated the embossing powder, my craft room was filled with the scent of pine.

I glued the now midnight-black sprigs to a wooden tooth-pick and wrapped some rough string around the join - et voila - a very witchy broom.  

If you like to see how I created my All Hallows House Mouse, have a look at my original Scary House Mouse blog post.

You can also see how I used my Tied Together embossing folder and Black Soot ink pad to create my Halloween textured "wallpaper" from a piece of purple patterned paper.

The pumpkins were cut on my Cameo Silhouette, I like the curly fronds.  The silver-tone spider was an Ebay find, I just added the crystal to the centre and suspended it from a thread of Halloween Bakers Twine.

Here's one final look at this spooktacular card...

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Saturday 11 October 2014

Dress Tag Card with Mannequin

Hello all, back today with a classic Dips' card - a Dress Tag with Mannequin.
Card Recipe:
Stamp: Katy Sue Designs 
Tools: Tonic Studios Elegant Vine Square Die Set, Mannequin Tag DieSimplicity Dotty Border Punch, Layering Square DiesFanciful Flourish, Grand Calibur
Colouring Mediums: Promarker Pens, Tim Holtz Distress Ink Pads
Paper and Card: Tonic Studios Watch the Birdie, Conqueror, Stardream, Textured Pearl
Embellishments: flatback pearls
I think you all know I love a dress card especially when paired with a mannequin too!  I've reached for this Mannequin Tag Die so often but I do like to do something a little different each time.  So this time I used the mannequin die to cut out a mannequin form in plain oyster card, then I cut it out again using an offcut of patterned papper and trimmed off the stand elements and then pieced the two together.  You may just see that the patterned paper is also used as a background layer behind the Elegant Vine Sqaure base that I've used for the main focal layer.

To create the main stamped image tag, I traced around the tag die and then extended it slightly at the base.  I cut it out and then used the my dotty border punch to create the scalloped edge.

Finally, I also used off-cuts of card to cut out several swirls using the Fanciful Flourish die set, which I scattered randomly on the base card, and you can see them peeking out from behind the main mat.  It's a great way to create subtle texture. Pin It Now!

Wednesday 1 October 2014

Cardstock - My Recommendations

Hello, my name is Dips and I'm a cardstock addict!  When I explain that the picture below is of my current stash of plain A3 cardstock, perhaps you'll understand!
And the above is the slimmed down version - I used to have twice as much as this!

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Saturday 13 September 2014

Framed Lattice Card

It's no secret that I am a big fan of Tonic Studios Dies but often I like to make a bigger card especially if it's a "special" birthday, and the Tonic Dies can at first appear too small. However, you just need a little creative thinking in your crafting .....
Tonic Studios Framed Lattice Card
Card Recipe:
Tools: Tonic Studios Indulgence Boudior Square Base DieSquare Layering Dies, Scallop Circle Layering DiesEvery Day Sentiments 1 Dies, Verdant Vines DiesDelicate Lattice Ovals Die SetGrand Calibur
Paper and Card: Stardream Card
Embellishments: Flatback pearls and crystals, handmade hat pins, double satin ribbon
You can watch a youtube video I've filmed on how to make this card here:

I created the main focal point by cutting the Boudoir Base (without the outside cutting edge) straight into the aqua stardream card stock.  Then I cut a frame from white card and a matching scallop circle mat, to frame the lattice and to create a mat for the sentiment.

Filigree Flower made from Delicate Lattice Ovals Die
The "flower" is made from the smallest die from my Delicate Lattice Ovals Die set - sometimes you wonder what to do with these smaller dies but the symetrical design of this little die makes is perfect to layer up to create a filigree flower.

Finally, I had to add a couple of handmade hatpins, don't forget to check out my two tutorials on Creating Hatpins and the aptly named follow-up, More Decorative Hatpins for a simple guide to creating your own embellishments.

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Monday 1 September 2014

1 Today Baby Girl Birthday Card

I've been waiting ages to show you this 'Lucia 1 Today' card, so I do hope you think it was worth the wait!
Card Recipe:
Image: Joanna Sheen House Mouse Triple CD
Paper and Card: Textured, DCWV, Stardream
Tools: Tonic Studios Happy Birthday Sentiment Die SetLayering Squares, Love Arches Punch, Fanciful Flourish Die SetGrand Calibur, Silhouette Cameo 
Embellishments: lace, seam binding, lace heart, pearls and crystals

I made this card for my parents to give to their first (and only) granddaughter on her first birthday, so it had to be special!

The focal point is this lovely sweet House Mouse digi image from Joanna Sheen''s House Mouse Triple CD.  I die cut with my favourite layering squares dies and mounted it onto a fancy square from the Happy Birthday Sentiment die set on DCWV luxury cardstock.

I used my Silhouette Cameo to cut out the 'Lucia 1 Today'  motif and  highlighted the 1 with flatback pearls.  The pretty lace heart is from the Tilly Daydream collection.

I'm generally of the view that more is more, I do like fussy and fancy cards, so some of the extra detailing on this card include:
* a cyrstal embellished florish swirl die-cut
* a seam binding bow
* handmade decorative hat-pins
* a lace border, layered with a cardstock border punched out using the Love Arches punch.

If you would like to have a go at making your own decorative hat-pins, I have a tutorial here that is a great starting point. 

I used the Happy Birthday frame as a mount for the message inside the card.

Here's one final look at this card.
I do really love hat-pins, lace and House Mouse - what about you? Pin It Now!

Tuesday 12 August 2014

Retro Handbag Card

Hello Folks, apologies that there has been a bit of a hiatus post-wise, I was away on business with very limited Internet access and no access to crafting equipment!  Anyhow, enough about that, thought I'd come back a share with you a lovely but simple shaped Retro Handbag Card.
Tonic Studios Butterfly Purse Retro Handbag Card
Card Recipe:
Tools: Tonic Studios Verso Butterfly Purse Die Set, Layering Oval Dies, Layering Butterfly Dies, Verdent Vines Dies, Everyday Sentiment Die set 1Grand Calibur 
Paper and Card: First Edition Spring Feast, Textured Card
Embellishments: Rhinestone Swirl 
This card is a remodelling of a card style I first designed in October 2007 (see my original pictured left).  Back then, we didn't have all these lovely thin dies to use and I used to cut the original flap part using a cutting compass (and it failed to cut cleanly 50% of the time)!  This time around I used my Butterfly Purse Die - perfect for the job in hand and so much more reliable and quicker too.

Back in 2007, we also didn't have easy access to die cut greetings either, but I am so glad things have moved forward since then, as I think this Happy Birthday greeting is the perfect addition to the inside of this card.

My favourite handbag brand is Radley and they often use applique methods to adorn their bags.  So I mimicked the style with various die cut shapes to add texture.

Whilst the tools we use may change and improve, we still need ideas and inspiration for making our cards, so I do hope that this updated blast from the past has given you some inspiration too. I'd love to hear if you too have re-made a classic old card design, please leave me a comment below and share a link if you've blogged it too! Pin It Now!

Friday 1 August 2014

Clean & Simple CAS Tiara Corners Card

I've said it before, I don't really "do" clean and simple, but I had this idea in my head for creating a card by layering up Tiara Corner Die Cuts, and it was an itch that needed scratching!
Card Recipe:
Tools: Tonic Studios Verso Tiara Corner Die, Layering Scallop Circle Dies, Layering Circle and Square Dies, Grand Calibur 
Paper and Card: Stardream Card
Embellishments: Rhinestone Button 

I created the focal point by cutting 4 die cuts from white pearlescent card using the larger die in the Tonic Studios Tiara Corner die set.  I then cut 2 mats using the layering square dies, and cut aperatures with the layering circle dies.

I had to limit myself to just adding the one bit of bling, I still get twitchy fingers when I "finish" a clean and simple card, I do find hard not to add just a bit more!

Hope you like it!
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Tuesday 8 July 2014

Sneak Peek 2 - Shaped Card using the new Tonic Studios Intrica Daisy Lace Square Dies

Gosh, isn't this new Tonic Studios new Intrica Daisy Lace Square as pretty as a Daisy?

Card Recipe:
Tools: Tonic Studios Intrica Daisy Lace Square, Layering Scallop Circle Dies, Occasions Dies, Grand Calibur 
Paper and Card: Textured Card, Bo Bunny
Embellishments: Bo Bunny Brads 

To create this shapeed card, I trimmed a sheet of A4 to 15cm wide, then scored and folded it in half.  I then positioned the outer edge die so that the fold was below the top cutting edge of the die.  It took two passes (including 1 turn) through my Grand Calibur to cut both layers of card to create the base.  I then fully cut a single layer of contrasting card in white to layer over the top.  The three new sets of Intrica Dies are compatible with all major die cutting machines including the cuttlebug.

This new Intrica Daisy Lace Square Die set works very well with the Occasions Set for special birthdays, but here's the same card just using a computer generated sentiment die cut with the layering circles dies.  I like having a card design that I can adapt for more than one occasion, especially for those times when Mr Mojo goes walk about.  What about you?

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Monday 7 July 2014

Sneak Peek - Tonic Studios New Intrica Wild Vine Circle Dies and Border Punch

Many of you will know that I do love a Wreath Card, so it's no surprise that this is what I immediately thought to make with Tonic Studios' new Intrica Wild Vine Circle Die and Punch.
Tonic Studios Intrica Wild Vine Circle Die & Punch
Card Recipe:
Tools: Tonic Studios Intrica Wild Vine Circle DiesIntrica Wild Vine Strip Punch, Layering Square Dies, Christmas Cracker Die, Grand Calibur 
Paper and Card: Pearl, Stardream
Embellishments: Ribbon, Rhinestones 
I know that some people are slightly nervous about using intircate dies, I can assure you that I had no problems at all but here are my tips for creating a great cut:
  • cut your card to size pre-die cuting, this way you will be able to turn the dies
  • when using more than 1 die (for this card I used 3 off the dies combined), you will need to turn the dies and pass it through more than once.  It took three passes and turns for me to cut the wreath layers
  • I don't use wax paper with Tonic Dies (I've never needed to) but I do dust my Grand Cailbur silicon mat with baby powder to reduce static on my complex dies.
  • These dies are the size that fit in all cutting machines including the cuttlebug, not just the A4 machines.
I hope that this helps, and here's one final look at this wreath card

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