Sunday, October 4, 2015

Our Beautiful World - Colors of October

This week's word prompt over at Our Beautiful World is Colors of October.  Quite technically, these photos were taken in September, but they are what I think of when I think of October in Colorado.  We usually travel for fall break - the first two weeks of October and so I associate the colors of fall with the colors of October in Colorado.  Still, I think these photos count - blue skies, white clouds, green evergreen trees, barren slopes in tans and browns. Occassionally, one can find a stand of trees whose leaves have turned.  This and the next three photos are all taken along Trail Ridge Road driving West out of Estes Park in Colorado.  I recently visited my grandparents and we spent the day enjoying the scenic views.

A stop by the side of the road where we find a delightful little brooke flowing in and amongst the bushes.  Beautiful splashes of red flowers were found along the water.

This view if from the hill right next to my grandparents house in Broomfield, Colorado.  One might find it boring in the tans and browns, with little green.  I find it delightful as this is the view when I am only minutes from seeing my grandparents.   This familiar feeling is full of anticipation and joy.

Here we are next to the Big Thompson river in Estes park, my grandma and me.  I thank God for such a strong and loving women who has been there all my life.  I am joyful that my 88 year old grandma could spend the day driving in the Rocky Mountians.  This is something we've done for decades and if it was up to me we'd do it for decades more.  Wishing you the joy of October.  Why don't you flip through your pictures to show the ladies over at Our Beautiful World what the colors of October look like where you are from?

Saturday, October 3, 2015

An Inflated Birthday Card

I worked up this card recently to give to my dad on his birthday.  The man card can be so tough, but my Avery Elle Balloons Clear stamp and die set was just what I needed.  I used some Simon Says Stamp hybrid inks to ink up the balloons and the card.  These stamps can be a bit tricky to stamp so I just made and die cut a bunch of them.  Now I have some for another card if I need them later.

On the inside I used my Penny Black Sweet Wishes stamp set and colored with Inktense watercolor pencils.

A simple, but effective card. I've been hoping around the internet enjoying World Cardmaking Day and will be linking up with the following:

Simon Says Stamp's World Cardmaking Day post

Simon Says Stamp's Wednesday Challenege: Anything Goes

Word Art Wednesday's Challenge #203: Anything Goes

Today's the day - get crafty and join World Cardmaking Day.  We're all having fun.

Friday, October 2, 2015

A Lovely Gift - Handemade Mini Album

Front Inside Cover
I am immensely pleased to bring you another Brandy creation today.  She made this mini-album for a friend to give to his grandma.  No way to talk through all the crafty goodness in this book, but I'll try to give a few important details.  Feel free to grab something soothing to drink and flip through the photos.  It is worth it to zoom in on a couple of these lovely pages to really get a picture of the variety of embellishments that were included in this book.

On the mini-book cover, Brandy printed the title out onto white cardstock and embellished with stamped stars, carrying the background theme forward.  Those flowers are cut from patterned paper, inked on the edges with Distress Ink and shaped using this technique.
Lots of pockets to add photos and tags tucked inside to place photos or journaling

Tag toppers peak out of the album
The album is made using the hidden hinge technique.  Brandy followed these two videos for inspiration:

Ginger at My Sister's Scrapper
Stack the Deck Mini-albums with Laura Denison

Click the links, but be warned.  These paper bag albums are addictive.  It's not called Contagiously Crafty for nothing!
Each tag is covered on one side with patterned paper from a Best of Basic Grey collection

The backside of the tags are stamped with journaling frames as a suggestion how to fill them.  Space at the top for picture, room at the bottom for writing.
The fold out sides add such beauty and a useful place for pictures

The book just isn't complete without a waterfall photo/journal book at the back

The back cover is spectacular.  The stars were made using a background die of repeative stars.  The die cut dark paper was then glued to a light background paper.  Each star was then filled with glue and glittered.  The picture doesn't exactly do the glitter justice, but I can reassure you is stunning in person.  This technique was used on both the front and back covers.

The gold handmade paper is a perfect accent for the binding.  Don't you love the chain of charms Brandy attached to the binding.  A little bit of extra care and attention in the book design.

This card was a last step in book design intended for the giver to write a special note to his grandma before giving the gift.  So precious with those Heartfelt Creations Vintage Floret flowers die cut from patterned paper and shaped as indicated previously.  Do you see the teeny, tiny butterflies?  Oh my but this is a special book.

Wednesday, September 30, 2015

More Watercoloring with Distress Markers

I did it - broke out an old Close to My Heart Twinkle Toes stamp set and created some scene cards.  Once again, I followed the no-line watercoloring technique with Distress Markers shared by Kristina Werner in her video.  In this set, I started each image with Antique Linen Distress Inks and created the background by eye-balling it.  In Some cases this worked, but if you look close enough there are other cases with clear flubs.  Don't look too close and you'll start to think I'm a bit of an artist!

The sentiment is stamped onto the same watercolor paper in black Archival Ink.  The sentiment comes from the CTMH stamp set and the frame stamped and die cut with my Our Daily Bread Designs Ornate Borders stamp and die set.  

I enjoyed cutting these images out with some of my dies and others I just punched the corners with a corner punch.  Either way, these are ready as card toppers to put together as needed.

I really had a lot of fun working with these images and coloring them.  Truthfully, they have sat idle in the stash for a very long time because simply didn't believe I had enough talent in me for coloring.  Be encouraged all who think the same of themselves.  It is not true!  Our talent is just slightly different than those who can create these images with slightly more ease.  Try it, mess up, try again and be amazed.  I sure am...
I'm not sure what I will do with this one last piece.  The flower stamp comes from a different stamp set.  I ended up stamping and coloring this image and then decided to cut the frame using a similar technique shown in this video. Wonderful technique that I simply don't use enough.

Stretch your crafting talent.  Go out a view a few YouTube videos or surf the talented blogs of your friends and then give these techniques a try.  You might be pleasantly surprised at the results, just like me.

Monday, September 28, 2015

Brilliant Fall Colors

I am the guest designer this week at the City Crafter Challenge blog for their challenge Fall Has Arrived.  You might be getting tired of hearing this same theme from me, but it is a measure of my gratitude to the ladies for asking me to join them.  Time is very short to join this challenge.  Get your post together and link up quickly as the challenge closes tonight.  For this challenge you can create a project or pick an element from the photo inspiration.

This card was made using the following techniques which are similar to the one in the challenge entry.  Here's the details:
  • The background was made by sprinkling Brilliant Red, Orange and Yellow Brushos watercolor crystals onto Strathmore watercolor paper.  I then used a spray bottle to mist water over the paper.  It created these splashes of color.  I did leave the paper flat and used a heat tool to dry so I didn't (purposefully) get too much watercolor effect.  This technique leaves wonderful bursts of color that are perfect for this card.
  • I die cut the leaves with my Momenta Cut 'N Emboss Leaf die from some glitter paper.  I inked the emboss plate from the leaf die using brown Archival Ink.  The ink added the leaf veins and created beautiful focal points on the card.  
  • The sentiment came from a Raisin Boat Thankful stamp set.  I stamped in brown Archival Ink and hand cut the banner, edging in Distress Inks.  
It was so fun to prepare to be the guest designer.  Hurry on up and join the fun over at City Crafter Challenge Blog!  The challenge ends tonight.