December 31, 2010

A Little Pink Purse

Recently Penny Black challenged their design team to create a shaped card and I couldn't resist using this template I designed for a little purse.

Finished Size:  4 1/8 x 4

After tracing the template "here" on white cardstock and trimming, I added color with a sponge dauber and Tsukineko's Angel Pink and Lilac Posies Memento inks.  I used Judi Kins Eclipse Tape to mask off and protect areas while I worked on different parts of the purse.  Staedtler's Watercolor Pencils were used to highlight the flowers along with a Sparkle Gelly Roll pen.

The handle was colored with a Copic Marker (110).  Since the ink is so rich and soaked through the cardstock, I also colored the handle from the backside.  The handle looks just as nice from the back as it does from front.  Then I added Glossy Accents to give the handle an acrylic look.

I hid a tiny magnet under the flower closure and the inside sentiment to hold the card closed. 

Here is a view of the card opened:

I used an assortment of Penny Black stamps for the patterned paper, closure and sentiment.  The rose is from the transparent set Stuck on You (30-062), and the little round closure disk is a part of Butterfly-Kissed (4124K)You Make Me Smile (3637B) is one of my favorite sentiments.  It fits almost any occasion.  All these stamps are part of the new Amour 2011 catalog.  If you haven't seen the new designs be sure to take a peek.

If you like shaped cards, check out Denise's Hedgehopper "here" and Kathy's I Love You "here".  Plus, there is more to come as the other wonderfully talented design members showcase their shaped cards in upcoming Penny Black Blog posts.

Thank you for making this year extra special for me as you warmly welcomed me into the world of blogging with so many of your visits and comments.  I appreciate each and every one!! 

Wishing you a Happy New Year,

December 27, 2010

Mini Valentine Cards

I hope everyone had a wonderful Christmas filled with lots of love.

Speaking of love, today I have a pair of miniature Valentines that were created with Tim Holtz's Styled Label die. 

The fold at the top of the card was positioned just below the cutting tooth of the top part of the die.  This allowed the card to be shaped and maintain the top fold hinge.


Sizzix:  Tim Holtz Alterations Mover & Shapers Styled Labels
Spellbinders:  Scalloped Circle Nestabilities
Tsukineko: Onyx Black VersaFine, White VersaColor, Lilac Posies Memento
Sakura:  .01 Black Micron Pen, Black Glaze Pen
Staedtler:  Marsgraphic Duo Watercolor Brush Markers
Offray:  Sheer Ribbon
Other:  Clear Embossing Powder, Crystal Stickles

You can see other miniature Valentines featured today on the Penny Black Blog.  

I hope you enjoyed these little cards filled with lots of love. 

Thank you for visiting,

December 22, 2010

A Merry Christmas Tree Box

Happy Holidays!

Today I have a template to share with you.  This festive tree-shaped gift box is easy to make and can also be fashioned into an ornament or personalized with a guest’s name for a decorative place setting on the table.

Published in Scrap & Stamp Arts - December 2010

This little compartment is perfect for a gift or sweet confections.

Finished Size:  3 x 3-3/8

The sentiment and snow scroll were stamped with green ink and heat embossed with clear powder.  A jumbo sponge dauber made adding Memento ink highlights a snap. 

You can download my template here.  Please note that while the pattern pieces may appear to be the same size there is a slight difference so the back of the box will fit properly into the front.

Tsukineko:  Olympia Green VersaFine, Desert Sand Memento, Lady Bug Memento,
                    Rhubarb Stalk Memento, Clear Embossing Powder, Jumbo Sponge Dauber
USArtQuest:  Duo Embellishing Adhesive
Barbara Tombley’s Banana Ultra-Fine Glitter
Offray:  3/8” Cranberry Grosgrain Ribbon

Wishing you a very Merry Christmas filled with love, hope, peace and joy.


December 20, 2010

Holiday Penguin Thank You

Here is another way to use your holiday stamp images - thank you notes. 

I always smile when I see this row of penguins.  Plus, they are so quick to color.

The penguins and star are from the transparent set called Mimi's Christmas and the dots on the blue cardstock were created with VersaMark Watermark ink and Starlit.

The front of the card was cut short so the back flap with the sentiment "thanks" would be visible.

Here is an inside view:

All the stamping was done with Onyx Black VersaFine and heat embossed with clear powder.  A quick bit of color was added with Copic markers.

Some fun accents include Glossy Accents on the noses, Crystal Stickles on the snowflakes and faux stitching created with a .01 black Micron pen. 

For more ideas on how to use Christmas/Holiday stamps for thank you notes, visit the Penny Black Blog where the design team is sharing their inspiration today.

"Thanks a bunch" for stopping by,

December 18, 2010

Thinking of You (Shaker Box Card)

Hello Everyone.

In my previous post, I created a wintry card using Penny Black’s Thinking Around stamp.  Today I have another variation - a shaker card - using the same stamp.

This was a project I created for the March 2010 issue of Scrap & Stamp Arts.  The shaker box is constructed from an empty plastic tape ring and a scalloped circle Nestability. 

The shaker elements are white seed beads that were colored by placing them in a tiny plastic bag along with a few drops of butterscotch Adirondack Alcohol Ink.  After they were coated, they were spread out on a non-stick craft sheet to dry.

Here is a quick reference of the supplies I used:

Tsukineko:   Summer Sky, Desert Sand, Tangelo, Cantaloupe -  Memento Inks
                    Dandelion, Danube Blue, Tuxedo Black -  Memento Markers
                    Black Onyx, Habenero -  VersaFine Inks
                    Jumbo Daubers
Ranger: Glossy Accents, Butterscotch Alcohol Ink
Spellbinders:  Circle and Scalloped Circle Nestabilities
Provo Craft:  Swiss Dots Embossing Folder
Other:  Yellow Rhinestone, Pearl Seed Beads, 3/8” Blue Satin Ribbon, Acetate, Clear Embossing Powder

Have a wonderful weekend,

December 16, 2010

Thinking of You

This is a card that I made for the Penny Black blog.  Their theme this week was to create a non-holiday greeting using Christmas stamps.  I jumped at this challenge since I like to use all my stamps throughout the year.    

For this project, I used the holiday stamps Wherever You Are 4113K, Winter Whites & Greens 30-057, and Snow Scroll 3892K and paired them with the Thinking Around 3650F sentiment.  

Three quarters of the white card base was embossed with Swiss Dots.  The Snow Scroll was stamped with tangelo Memento ink and the small square of script is a piece of Gloss Paper that was stamped with Wherever You Are in black StazOn ink.

To create the elevated embellishment, Thinking of You was stamped twice with black VersaFine ink on white cardstock.  Using circle Nestabilities, one of the sentiments was die cut in a full circle and the second impression was die cut to produce the small ring of dots.  The ring was colored with a Copic marker (V06) and glued to a piece of acetate.  The acetate window was attached to the first image with dimensional foam.  The snowflake from Winter Whites & Greens was stamped in purple hydrangea VersaMagic and heat embossed with clear powder.  I “fussy cut” the snowflake and attached it to the top of the acetate with dimensional foam.  Crystal stickles was added for a glittery accent.

I hope this card inspires you to use your holiday stamps throughout the year.  Next week I will have a thank you card using more holiday images.

Wishing you a warm and cozy day.


December 15, 2010

A Love Song Flower

Today I have a paper art project.

This little flower was made with a scalloped circle Nestability and Penny Black's Love Song.

I stamped the watercolor paper die cut with Love Song in black VersaFine ink and heat embossed with clear powder.  Then I scored the piece into 8 equal sections and made a 1/2" cut from the outer edge on each scored line.  Water colors were randomly applied to the front and back.  The petals were then folded and curled with lots of scrunching.  (A small paintbrush handle works very well for curling.)  Once I obtained the shape, I inserted a florist wire and applied Glossy Accents in the base of the flower and squeezed it closed.  While the glue was still wet, I sprinkled pink and yellow glitters into the center.

The flower was sprayed with Frost Sheer Shimmer Spritz and little water droplets were created with Glossy Accents.  

Wishing you a bouquet of good wishes.


December 13, 2010

Copic Sketch Brush "Tip"

While working on several projects, I have had a selection of Copic markers colorfully strewn across my art table.  There is a fifty-fifty chance of opening the brush tip end, but I found that I was consistently opening the chisel end.  It almost became comical.

I finally realized that one end has a clear plastic band around the neck and this is the end that has the brush tip.  This was so helpful as the side with the little icons is not always facing up.

I might be the last one to have noticed this, but you if find yourself losing the battle at guessing like I was, I wanted to share this Copic “tip” with you. 


December 10, 2010

Love Attracts

For the longest time I have been thinking about making a ribbon button.  I’ve always been intrigued by the design and today I decided to give it a go.

I put a chipboard disc with a small magnet on the backside of this gift embellishment so it could also be used on a refrigerator.  Then I started thinking how fun these would be as party favors for a little girl’s birthday celebration.  An elastic loop could easily transform this into a small bracelet.  (Or place them on hair clips and jewelry pins!)  Decorative napkin ring holders are another possibility. 

To begin, I sewed together the ends of a 14” long, 1” wide piece of white grosgrain ribbon.  To gather, I ran a basting stitch by hand around one edge making sure I had thread tails at each end to pull the stitching together.  Once gathered, I knotted and trimmed the threads.    

To add a little punch to the gathered button, I airbrushed it with a pink Copic marker.  The cute little mouse is from Penny Black’s Good Catch transparent set (**New Valentine Release**) which was stamped in black Memento ink and colored with Copics.  The white and red cardstocks were die cut with Nestabilities and the decorative dots were created with a white gel pen.

Your visits are greatly appreciated.

Thank you for viewing.


December 8, 2010

Petals and Poetry Thank You

Today I created a thank you card by combining a rubber stamped sentiment and this elegant sticker from Penny Black.

The sticker is from the Petals and Poetry Sticker collection and the sentiment is from the Flower Gallery transparent set.

To add to the richness of the sticker, I mounted it on cardstock then attached it to the card with dimensional foam tape.  The script is a piece of cream cardstock embossed with a Cuttlebug folder with a bit of Antique Linen Distress ink applied on top.

Thank you so much for for all your visits and kind comments.


December 6, 2010

Watercolor Crayon Technique Cards

Thanks to your overwhelming response to Penny Black’s first Technique Week that they have put together Technique Week II featuring alternative ideas for coloring.  All this week, each designer’s project will feature step-by-step photos and instructions.

The coloring medium I am working with is watercolor crayons and I have two projects.

The first features new releases from Penny Black’s 2011 Valentine collection.

Purr-fect Message (40-040), Good Catch (30-064)

All the details and stepped out photos for this card can be viewed on the Penny Black blog here.

The second watercoloring crayon tutorial is a holiday card and shows how to use kosher salt to create a wintry backdrop.

Step 1:  Stamp image with black pigment ink on watercolor paper and heat emboss with clear powder. 

Tip:  Heat setting the powder from underneath will eliminate small pieces of powder from being scattered and melted in area that will be colored.  At first glance these melted specks are not visible, but will resist the coloring medium once painting begins and can cause tiny white flecks.  The embossing also acts as a “fence” and is helpful in keeping the watercolors from bleeding beyond the edge of the image and gives a very sharp and defined outline. 

Hint:  Some types of watercolor paper have a rough front surface and smooth back surface.  I typically use the smoother, backside.

Step 2:
Using a damp paint brush, lift color directly from the crayon and apply to the image.  Start with the lightest color first.  Notice that some areas have been left “white” or uncolored.  This will allow room for additional colors to be added and blended and will also serve as a highlighting feature when the piece is completed. 

Step 3:

A darker color in the same hue is applied.  Here you can see the gradual difference building and the colors are becoming more prominent. 

Step 4:

Continuing adding color and blending until the desired shade is achieved. 

Step 5:
Here is a trick if you find that you don’t have the right color crayon – you can make your own shade!  Simply apply color from the crayons directly to watercolor paper then blend with a small bit of water.  This becomes your own personalized palette.  The two colors here were blended to create the “blue” shade used for the bird.

While watercolor is still wet apply kosher salt.

View after salt has been brushed away.

Step 7:

One way to create a large batch of color is to put a few drops of water on a plastic surface and then scribble the crayon through the puddle until the desired concentration is achieved.  Here a batch of blue was created for the sky and painted onto a piece of watercolor paper.  While the paper was still wet, coarse kosher salt was sprinkled on top.  Once dry, brush away the salt to reveal a stippled design.

Step 8:

Create a decorative frame from the ornate corner flourish in the Slapstick set called “Peace Everyday” and watercolor.  I like to “fussy” cut and trimmed the outside edges as well as removed the interior panel.   

Step 9:
Assemble the card.  The bear and bird were trimmed and positioned in the ornate frame with the blue stippled cardstock as a backdrop.  Random paper piercings adorn the white cardstock around the frame.  A red and gold mat were added before applying to a card created with Penny Black's Christmas Music paper.

Supplies for Be Merry:


Decorative Paper:

Watercolor Crayons- Staedtler-Mars, Ltd.
Onyx Black Pigment Ink - Tsukineko
Clear Embossing Powder
Paint Brush
Heat Tool

Thank you for stopping by.  I appreciate all your visits and comments.

Have a happy day,

December 3, 2010

Hugs & Kisses - Card & Video

Love is in the air and Penny Black has just released their new Valentine designs.  Their mini catalog is filled with everything from elegant to fun images.  Mimi is back for the holiday with her friend Miles as well as the Fashion Girls straight from Paris.        

There were so many new designs that it was hard to decide which to use first.  Because I couldn’t pick just one, I combined three!

If you would like to view a tutorial video for this card, click here.

Using a black Memento dye marker, I colored the sections of the stamp “All Mine” that I wanted to incorporate into my design.  After stamping the inked image I then added the sentiment from Purr-fect Message.  The decorative border on the orange cardstock was stamped with Love Song in Lilac Posies Memento ink.

To give the design added dimension, I stamped an extra set of bees and attached them with dimensional foam.  If you find that your sparkle gel pen looks a little thick when applying, rub the ink with your finger while it is still wet to get a light and airy effect.  I did this on the bee wings.

All the coloring was done with Copic markers.  The heart was accented with red Stickles and crystal gemstones were placed in the centers of the smaller flowers.

If you would like to see all the wonderful new Penny Black Valentine releases, you can view the 2011 Amour catalog here.
Thank you for visiting and have great weekend.  


December 1, 2010

Guest Designer - Penny Black @ Allsorts Challenge Blog

Today I am honored to be a guest artist on the Penny Black @ Allsorts Challenge Blog.  They have an amazing design team and always have great prizes for their monthly challenges.  If you are a fan of Penny Black stamps and are looking for creative challenges, this is a link to their inspirational blog: 

Click HERE

This month’s theme is “Beauty is in the eye of the Beholder”.  I immediately thought of a small snow globe.  I used to love shaking those globes and as the snow sparkled and floated around I would imagine all sorts of dreamy possibilities.

That thought inspired me to create this wintry globe.

I combined the globe from the Sending Love cling set with the wood mounted To Follow the Star stamp.  I made template pieces for the globe base so I could create two parts that were solid black and one with the pattern from To Follow the Star.  Each piece was embossed twice with Ultra Thick Embossing Enamel before it was adhered to the base.

The traveling wise men were stamped on a separate piece of white cardstock and heat embossed with clear powder.  I carefully trimmed around the images and rounded off the bottom portion so it could be tucked under the frame of the globe.

Before tucking the piece under the frame, I made a second piece to layer on top that had the glittery snow.  The part where it transitions from gold to white is the result of Gold Metallic StazOn applied to the cardstock before adhesive and glitter were added.   A few pieces of dimensional foam pop out the image and left enough room for the sentiment – Miracles and Wonders.

When working with glitters, I like to use Duo Embellishing Adhesive (USArtQuest).  This glue has a milky appearance when applied and when cured (tacky) is clear.  You can then add your choice of glitter and tap off the excess.  The bond is terrific.

The backdrop is composed of ivory cardstock that was embossed with dots and horizontal lines.  The embossed features were then inked with Vintage Photo Distress ink.

The ribbon was aged with Vintage Photo Distress ink and the script from To Follow the Star was over stamped in black dye ink.

The gold paper is actually a piece of French Vanilla cardstock edged with Gold Metallic StazOn directly from the ink pad.  This ink has a true metallic gold color and I often use the ink from the inker bottle for painting.

Here is a summary of the supplies used for this project:

Penny Black Stamps:

Other Materials:
Ruby Slipper, French Vanilla Cardstocks Bazzill
Copic Markers
Tuxedo Black Memento Dye Ink, Onyx Black VersaFine Ink, Gold Metallic StazOn Ink (Tsukineko)
Vintage Photo Distress Ink (Ranger)
Clear Embossing Powder (Tsukineko)
Ultra Thick Embossing Enamel (Suze Weinberg)
Angel Dust Glitter (Art Glitter by Barbara Trombley)
Duo Embellishing Adhesive (USArtQuest)
Swiss Dots Embossing Folder (Provo Craft)
Scor-Pal Scoring Board
Red Ribbon

Thank you for stopping by and to Penny Black @ Allsorts for inviting me to be a guest this month.

I hope you are inspired to create a design and enter the challenge for the chance to win fabulous Penny Black stamps!