Sunday, April 29, 2012

My Favorite Things - May Guest Designer Challenge

Greetings friends!!  I'm posting today to bring you my entry into this month's MFT Guest Designer Challenge!  The theme?  Be A Teacher's Pet!  So fun!!  It's hard to believe that it's almost THAT time of year again but indeed we are almost at the end of the school year and that means thoughtful gifts for those most important and fabulous teachers in our children's lives.  I've made a very special chalkboard frame for a teacher in our lives that is extremely special.  Our children were very lucky to be able to attend the most amazing pre-school ever.  It's warm, nurturing, loving, and extremely special.  It's hard to even put it into words but my son only has a few days left and at the end of his three years there he has grown into a wonderfully confident, loving, artistic, bright and kind boy.  Large in part due to the amazing lessons that he has learned from his teachers at FCF Preschool.  And I don't mean pen to paper lessons...I mean life lessons.  Sharing, caring, nurturing, friendship, love and support.  It's just the best school...ever.  So...with all of that said, I have made this chalkboard frame for his amazing teacher, Lois.
I started with a raw, 12x12", MDF frame purchased at Michaels.  I sanded the frame down and painted it with black acrylic paint.  I then painted four coats of chalkboard paint.  It's a bit laborious as you paint in one direction and then let it set for 24 hours.  Then you paint in the opposite direction the next time you paint, and so on and so forth.  The painting itself took four days to complete.  I then sanded it very lightly to get the surface chalk ready and then I started doodling on it with chalk to condition it further.
 The thought behind the chalkboard paint as opposed to regular paint is that each year, Lois can swap out the class photo for that current year's picture and doodle in chalk (her handwriting, as opposed to mine, is BEAUTIFUL!!) the year and any other information she feels like writing.  And, I've created a small, soft chalk holder that you see in the upper left hand side of the frame.
(I told you my handwriting is terrible!)  The chalk holder is made from yellow felt that I cut with MFT's Layered Heart Die-namics.  I used the larger of the two hearts, cut it out and zig zag stitched the edges together.  I tied a bow using my recent favorite May Arts chevron striped ribbon and snuggled the end of the heart holder into the tied bow.  It holds two pieces of chalk nicely so that it's always on hand when needed.  I also added one box of white and one box of colored chalk.  Both boxes are decorated to coordinate with this fun gift pack.
I used both ALM set "You Rule" and PI set "You Make The Grade" to embellish the boxes of chalk.  I used my fabulous Oval STAX Set 1 and Set 2 to create the focal point in order to house the sentiments.  I have to say that I really love the colors and design of the Crayola boxes so for the white chalk box, I left a tiny bit of the box peeking out on the bottom while on the box of color chalk, I used the Solid Bracket Border Die-namics to embellish.  Just keeping things interesting and fun! I added a few rhinestones to bling up the front in order to coordinate with the bling on the card.  I used awesome Jody Boosters to attach the sentiment panels to the front of the chalk boxes. 

I had SUCH a great time creating the decorative grouping that you see on the lower left hand side of the 12"x12" frame.  All of the pieces were done by hand.  I only have a small die in order to make rosettes from so for this, knowing I wanted a large version, I cut and scored everything by hand.  I started with my red cardstock, cutting it at 2" wide by 24" long (made by adhereing two 12" pieces together).  I scored at every inch, folded, adhered the two 12" strips together, and hot glued into a jumbo rosette.
I did the same with the notebook paper which is from Recollections (Michaels) but trimmed the paper to 1.5' wide so it would fit within the borders of the large red rosette leaving room for me to add more details in between the two.  I added loops of the red chevron ribbon along with natural twill, twisting each one and hot gluing it into place.  I had a huge chipboard star that was begging to be used!  I covered it with the same alphabet paper used on my card, ink distressed the edges and layered it on top of the ribbon.  After sponging the edges with Vintage Photo Distress Ink, I then added the notebook rosette on top of the star.  My next layers include a chipboard circle which I coated in Brilliance Aqua ink and then coated with UTEE (hard to see the shine in the pic) and the Swiss Dot yellow paper, also from Bazzill.

Layered on top of the entire grouping, I used the adorable ALM Talk Nerdy To Me sweetie.  I inked her with Momento ink onto Xpress cardstock and I colored her with my Copics.  I used silver Sakura pen to coat the metal top of the pencil as well as the graphite.  I coated the pencil wood with Versamark pen then in clear embossing powder and heat set.  It has a super fabulous shine!  I trimmed her out intentionally leaving a 1/8" border of white as I really, really love this look with certain images.  I adhered her down and then as a final touch added the smallest Hearts A Plenty Die-namics cut in red felt to the top. 

 I must say, I LOVE the wonderful dimension this jumbo element adds to this creation.
I wanted to do something impactful but didn't want to cover the entire frame so instead of covering the frame in design elements, I decided go to with a more three dimensional effect.  To the right of the huge rosette, I have added a large chipboard bracket that I coated with white craft ink and heat set with white embossing powder to sort of anchor the grouping and divide the space between the embellishments and the doodling area.  I also added two Royal Roses cut from yellow and aqua felt. 
I used my newest addiction, ahem, I mean my new favorite Fishtail Flags STAX Die-namics to add the PERFECT sentiment for a picture frame gift from the WTG set - Teacher's Pet

I also created a coordinating card using this week's MFT sketch as my muse.
 All of my papers are Bazzill and Recollections (Michaels).  The small black and white alphabet script is digital paper that I was sent a long time ago that I simply print out as needed.

I stamped my image once onto Xpress cardstock (for the hands and books) then again on the blue dotted paper(body), tan cardstock (pants), red cardstock (apple) and for the body, I only inked the main image not the surrounding frame.
 I then paper pieced in this order:  pants, shirt, books, hands, and apple.  I trimmed out my apple from the red cardstock and coated it with Glossy Accents and set it aside overnight to dry. 
Once dry, I added the apple to the image and then trimmed it out with my circle nesties.  I used one of the sentiments from the Teacher's Pet set, stamped, trimmed apart, matted and layered in between the WTG main layer and it's red matting.  I stitched the edges to keep everything together and to add more texture then I added a fun blingy circle.  Once this main piece was done I set it aside to complete the rest of my card.  I used the fun chevron ribbon, baby brads and a fun teeny, tiny paper clip to the top right.  As you can see I used my Vertical Greetings Die-namics layered on top of the Fishtail STAX to hold the digital paper. 

I finished off the interior keeping it bright and sweet with some Crate Paper ledger paper as the main focal  point. 
I have to, once again, thank Jody and Joanne for the wonderful challenge as well as the wonderful Design Team at MFT for the constant inspiration through weekly challenges and each and every spectacular release!  

If you are interested in seeing all of the amazing entries this month please pop by the gallery HERE at SCS!

Thanks so much for popping by to see my entry!

Crafty Hugs!

Fabulous MFT products used in this project:

Thursday, April 26, 2012

Tiddly Inks - Thank You

Today I'm bringing you another fabulously adorable and oh so sweet Tiddly Inks - Wryn image.  I've printed Wryn and Wren - Too Tweet onto Xpress Cardstock.  I also printed the image again onto some orange polka dotted designer paper that I had in my stash. 
I printed it on the designer paper in order to paper piece her dress.  I colored my image first in its entirety and then pieced her dress.  I used a nice coat of Glossy Accents on the toes of her shoes.  I trimmed her out using my MFT Oval STAX Die-namics ONE and TWO and added her to the card front using awesome Jody Boosters.  In the last few months, I have been super into the wonderful 6x6 paper pads that are in abundance all of a sudden in every store so much so that my HUGE collection of 12x12 paper is being sadly neglected.  So I've decided to give my mini packs a break and dig back into my 12x12.  I've used mostly Basic Grey papers (not sure which company the plaid is from...that was a scrap on my desk) and SU! and Bazzill solid card stock.
I used a sketch from MFT for my layout adding lots of stitching and anchored each skinny panel with mini brads.  The on-going challenge right now at Tiddly Inks is to create a 'Thank You' card so I've pulled out my Big Greetings from MFT which has a simple and crisp sentiment perfect for this.  I've stamped my sentiment in SU! Regal Rose ink onto watercolor paper and trimmed it out with my new MFT Fishtail Flag STAX Die-namics. 
I pulled out my felt stash in order to hand cut and roll three small flowers.  I edged my layers with Distress Ink in Old Paper to give each layer a bit more life.
I used more stash papers from my desk to create a fun interior.  I quickly cut the doily using MFT's Dizzy Doily Duo Die-namics (say THAT three times fast!) using the leftover BG paper from the front.  I layered a Tim Holtz Mini-Rosette on top and a MS Butterfly to finish the cluster off.  I stitched on two sides only to anchor the entire interior.  I am also entering this into the most recent SSS - Anything Goes challenge

Thanks for visiting today!!  I'm off to color new images for the upcoming Some Odd Girl Clear Stamp release a the end of May!!  So fun!! 

Crafty Hugs!

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Just Because...

Hi and Happy Wednesday!!  I've been trying to get into a mode where I am just able to create for the fun of creating.  Don't get me wrong, when I create for a challenge, specific project or deadline I have plenty of fun.  But there's something just so calming about creating anything for no reason other than pure fun.  I've been LOVING on the new Wryn images over at Tiddly Inks.  Every single one of them is amazing, fun and so perfect for any occasion that you might have!  I've created a sweet card to share with you today using Wryn - Watcha Doin'? I printed her out and then colored her with my Copics. 
I used my circle Nesties to cut her out and matte her with cardstock.  I then used some delicious MME papers for my background.  My embellishments include mini brads, a few self-adhesive rhinestones, some fun stitching and a teeny, tiny paper clip from Tim Holtz. 

You definitely want to swing into the TI shop and pick up some of the amazing new images that Christy has been putting out!  She and the entire design team are simply amazing!!  Check out their ongoing challenge right here!

Thanks for stopping by today!!

Crafty Hugs!

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Sweet Spring...

Greetings!!  Today brings another wonderful challenge over at the Paper and Such Challenge Blog!  This challenge is all about Mother's Day.  You can make a creation for any special Mom in your life.  I do hope you share it with us for a chance to win a gift certificate to the Paper and Such store! 

My creation today features papers from Bazzill and MME as well as the beautiful Paper and Such - Daffodils clear acrylic stamp set.  I stamped my image onto watercolor paper using Brilliance Craft Ink in Coffee Bean.  I then heat set it with Zing embossing powder in Copper.  Using my Tim Holtz Distress Inks I water-colored my image a gorgeous hot red/pink to match the papers that I'd chosen to use. 
Because this particular embossing powder is finer than the normal clear or black that I use, I didn't have the raised edges of my embossed image to keep the color in the lines.  So I immediately had to let go of the notion that it always has to be perfect and just let the color go where it wanted to!  After I painted my image, I then spritzed the entire piece three times with my pearlized water to achieve that super sparkly look.  (it's so bright and vibrant IRL!)

I added lots of stitching, some mini brads and a double bow tied with Champagne seam binding.  I sponged the edges of each layer before adhering everything down to give it a teeny bit of a vintage vibe.  My sentiment is housed on a Fishtail Flag STAX Die-namic from MFT. 

I kept the interior simple and crisp.
I do hope you will come join us for this great challenge

Crafty Hugs!

Sunday, April 22, 2012

MFT - Wednesday Stamp Club

Happy rainy Sunday!!  I am just so beyond thankful for the rain that's about to come here in the Northeast as my lawn, plants and garden so desperately need it!  And, at the end of a long vacation week home with my two super active kiddies, this Mommy needs a bit of crafty respite and a grey day is just perfect for that!  Today's creation is for the most recent MFT sketch challenge. 
I dug through all of my MFT stamps as I have quite a few that I (gulp) have never inked!  So today I'm using the adorably sweet Little Lamb - Better Together set.  It is impossibly sweet for many occasions. 
I started first by pulling my papers from MME together, along with my brads, cork and ribbon.  I then settled in to color the image, which is stamped with Momento, with my Copics.  I used some light grey tones and then my Floral and Brick white Copics to create their sweet fur and then pulled in the orange and brown tones to create shading with teeny tiny dots.  I truly adore this treatment and think it looks just so cute!  After coloring I paper pieced each of their pants, tops and tiny left hand of the lamb on the right.  I added this panel to my card using some fabulous Jody Boosters
I used my favorite self-adhesive cork for the Wonky Scalloped Die-namics edge, lots of fun and somewhat subtle stitching and mini black brads to anchor my corners.  I am SO loving on the new Fishtail Flag STAX Die-namics!!  If you don't have them you simply MUST grab them up right here!  I promise you, they are a fantastic staple to have in your creative arsenal.  I paired my creation with some black and white check ribbon tied in a fluffy bow in lieu of the circle element as shown in the sketch.
I finished off the interior using the second half of the sentiment and I added a couple of Stacking Star Die-namics that I already had cut and leftover on my desk.  Love when that happens!
I added one with a dab of adhesive and the other is popped up on a Jody Booster
Thanks for popping by today!  I hope you have enjoyed my creation and that you'll come play along with this amazing sketch right here

Crafty Hugs!

For You...

Greetings Paper and Such Friends!!  I hope that you have had a wonderful weekend and are enjoying a restful Sunday!  Today I'm bringing you a creation using the newly released Tenderhearted set.  I've also used the Deer Dad set for my interior sentiment.  Just a great combination!

I needed a birthday card so I started with Tenderhearted, minus her teardrop.  To achieve this, I used my tiny teardrop shaped Momento ink pad to ink the entire image keeping the ink away from the tear on her face.  I could have inked the entire image and then gone in with a cotton swab and wiped the ink away but I worried about leaving any extra ink residue therefore causing a smudge on her face.  So I carefully inked the entire image slowly.  And when I stamped it came out perfect.  No smudge, no ink where I didn't want it.  Just right!
I then colored my image with my Copic markers.  After I'd colored her skin (complete with teeny, tiny freckles) and hair, I paper pieced her pants, shirt, trim on her shirt, flowers and arms.  I knew that if I wanted to paper piece her shirt, I'd have to first do the entire shirt, arms and flowers as cutting out those flowers, stems and tiny areas around her arms and hands would prove rather difficult.  So here's the order in which I went.  I first stamped and pieced her purple pants.  I then stamped the image again on to the grey dotted paper.  I then trimmed her entire shirt out including hands, flowers, etc.  I pieced the entire shirt down on top of the pants making sure they didn't over lap too much as to leave any bulk.  I then inked again onto my green cardstock in order to cut the pieces of trim on the top and hem of her shirt.  I then inked one more time onto my Copic Express white cardstock and only colored her hands and flowers.  I then trimmed that out in one piece and adhered it down last making sure that the dimension of her shirt and hands looked right.  I then coated her hair, flowers and shoes with Glossy Accents and set aside to dry overnight. 
Yes, it was a lengthier process than coloring or just flat paper piecing but I love the look and how it makes the flowers in her tiny hands pop off the card front.

I added a lot of stitching for added visual interest, some hand rolled felt flowers, a few square brads and three perfectly placed pearls adding just enough but not too much bling. 
My cardstock is from SU! and Bazzill and my designer papers are MME that were leftover scraps on my desk.  I'm trying REALLY hard these days to use what I have...and I have a lot, a lot, a LOT of scraps!

My interior uses the Happy Birthday sentiment from the Deer Dad set along with a bit of stitching and more scraps to pull in the color palette from the card front.  I truly love this set, if for no other reason than the wonderful ability to mix and match the sentiments...especially for those hard to create masculine cards.
Thanks so much for visiting me today and I hope you find time to get creative!!

Crafty Hugs!

Monday, April 16, 2012

Some Odd Girl - Featured Digi Stamp

Greetings Oddies!!  So happy to be here with you today featuring Some Odd Girl Digi - Guitar Kody.  He is WAY too super cute and is so fun to color.  I printed Kody and then colored him with my Copics.  I trimmed him out purposefully leaving a tiny white border around him.  Depending on the image I love this look.  I used a nice thick coating of Glossy Accents on his eyes, guitar and sneaker toes. I used lots of fun embellishments, brads, stitching, Tim Holtz tiny paper clip and decorative tissue tape, my new Banner STAX from MFT and the stars are cut from an MFT Die-namics as is the bracket that houses the "much love" sentiment which is from the Lovey Tobie clear set. 
I paired him with some fun boyish papers that I found with my scrap bins (I'm trying so hard to use those first!) and some DELICIOUS new May Arts Ribbon.  Be sure to pop by the Odd Girl Blog to see the other amazing samples of Kody and be sure to grab him up in the shop while he's on sale!!

Crafty Hugs!

Friday, April 13, 2012

My Favorite Things...Weekly Stamp Challenge - "I See..."

Happy Friday Everyone!!  I must tell you that I am so excited and looking forward to this upcoming week of school vacation.  It means sleeping later, everyone in jammies until at least noon, sugar cereals and lots and lots of books, puzzles, art projects, nature walks and movie times. idea of a perfect vacation. 

But before I head into total downtime mode, I've just finished this week's MFT Weekly Stamp Club sketch challenge.  I used some fabulous Echo Park papers, fun and bright with visions of the upcoming Spring season.
Such a great sketch, as always!  I've used one of my favorite ALM sets - I Spy
I stamped her in Momento ink and colored her with my Copics.  I was looking for just "the" right color of orangey-pink so I blended two of my Copic colors together - R43 - Bougainvillea and Y38 - Honey.  I absolutely love the way it came out and would totally wear a dress like that!  CUTE!  I used a nice, thick coat of Glossy Accents on the magnifying glass letting it dry overnight.  I cut her out using my new Fishtail Flag STAX Die-namics (seriously talk about SWOON!!). 

I paired the EP paper with some SU! and Bazzill cardstock to bring out the fun and bright colors in the butterfly background.  I did a bit of stitching and used my MS double loopy punch for the decorative edges.  I, once again, used my Banner STAX for my "I See..." sentiment.  I am totally in love with my new May Arts V-twill ribbon.  I used the orange to compliment my color palette but I also bought it in red, green, champagne and blue!  I added a few teeny, tiny buttons threaded with an assortment of baker's twine. 
I tied it into a nice fluffy bow trimming my ends into a "v". 

Thanks for coming by today!  I hope you have a great weekend!!

If you want to come play along for a chance to win a MFT GC pop by the SCS thread HERE to check out all the details!

Crafty Hugs!

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Some Odd Girl Digital Release!

Greetings Odd Girl Fans!!  I'm posting today to show you another newly released image over at the Odd Girl Store!  May I introduce you to Little Loves - Tobie.  I mean sweet!!  I colored my image with my Copics and then paper pieced her pands and his shirt and pants.  I used a mish mash of papers from my desk along with a lace doily that I bought a my local five and dime store (Ann&Hope where I live).  They came in a pack of 50 for $1.  I can't get better than that!  The doily was white but I sponged it with Distress Inks in order to match it to my project.

My sentiment circle is from the clear set Crushin' Gwen.  Today at the Odd Girl Blog you will see yet another fabulous new release - featuring two new Kaylee images!  They are unbelievably sweet!!

Thanks for popping in today!

Crafty Hugs!

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Paper and Such Challenge Time!

Greetings Paper and Such friends!!  I hope you had fun with yesterday's new release blog hop!!  I know I did!!  Today we're issuing a new challenge at Paper and Such.  This challenge is easy for some and not for others...I am in the latter category!!  We challenge you to create something CAS - which stands for 'clean and simple'.  I covet people who have the skill of making a project look perfectly CAS yet keeping it interesting, fun and full of beauty.  I find that I constantly want to 'add' to my CAS projects even though I know well enough to leave them alone!  LOL!

Here is my CAS project to share with you today:
I've used two sets from Paper and Such - Deer Dad for the sentiment and Song In My Heart - main image.  I mean, really, could those sweet birds be any cuter?  I inked them in black Colorbox ink onto thick watercolor paper, heat set with black embossing powder and then water colored with my Distress Inks.  I then added 5 layers of UTEE (Ultra Thick Embossing Enamel) over the top, adhering each layer with Versamark Ink in Champagne.  I let each layer dry thoroughly in between and then popped it into the freezer for five minutes before cracking it. 

I kept everything else very minimalistic (for me anyways) adding a couple of blue staples, some beige baker's twine and a bit of stitching to add a bit of texture to my background. 

I do hope you come and play along right here at the Paper and Such blog for a chance to win a stamp set of your choice!  If you use a P&S stamp you will be entered into the drawing twice for a chance to win a stamp set of your choosing. 

See you over at the challenge blog!!

Crafty Hugs!