Saturday, November 26, 2011


We all love shopping, don't we?  Especially Christmas Shopping!!  Well, maybe sometimes not so much.  But I hope you'll enjoy the card I've made for this week's Christmas Shopping theme on the Card A Day Blog.   This card is also my entry for the CDAC Progressive Challenge Group.  We are on a new set of challenges (this is cdacpc7), and there's still time to get in on the fun.  So, if you like free, and you love challenges, check it out soon!

The digital image I used on my card comes from Sugar Creek Hollow.  Their webstore is undergoing some construction right now, but they also have a blog and offer their own challenges.

My card is pretty much a one-layer card.  Well, it's one layer mounted on a card base.  I've veered away slightly from my usual A2 card, and cut this one at 4 1/4" x 6" because I needed just a little extra room for all the stamps I was using.  Everything is stamped directly onto the white card except for the main sentiment and the paper-pieced central image which are mounted with foam tape.

I used a large background stamp and three different colors to take away the stark white of the card.  The extra sentiments were stamped directly on the card, and the gifts were stamped and heat embossed.  I colored the chic chick with Copics and embellished her with glitter pens.  Here are some close-ups so you can see the details.



I added a little color to the inside of the card using the same inks I used for the background on the card front, and stamped a fun greeting to go with the spirit of the card.

Here's the full front shot:

The Recipe:
          Stamps:  Impression Obsession 'Screen' background, JustRite 'Small Letter' set, Recollections 'Merry Merry' set, Pink by Design 'Shopaholic' and 'Designer Shoes' sets, Inkadinkado 'Holiday Inchie' bundle, and Stampin' Up 'Jolly Bingo Bits'
          Markers/Pens:  Copic Y0000, Y00, Y02, Y38 and Sakura Pink Star, Red Star and Green Star
          Inks:  Color Box Yellow Citrus, Lime Pastel and Ice Blue; Memories Direct Red and Ancient Page Pine
          Embossing Powders:  Stampendous Detail Gold and Detail Silver; Sweet Stamps Fine Detail Copper and Fine Detail Rose
          Papers:  Stampin' Up Garden Green and Wassau White cardstocks

Be safe on all your holiday shopping trips, and always keep your creative genius happy and well-fed!


Saturday, November 19, 2011

We Three Kings.....

It's another Card A Day Blog posting day for me. If you've never been there, or just haven't checked it out lately, CADB has been offering lots of Christmas cards, and will continue through the middle of December in hopes of offering some inspiration for your own holiday cards.  Your visit here, today, brings you to your last stop on this week's Christmas Around the World Tour.  I wanted to bring you a bit of one of the cultures of my grandparents, so I have chosen to represent one of the customs of Mexico and Spain - the celebration of Epiphany.  You'll find some info on this holiday at the end of this post.  But first, let me show you my card.

I knew I wanted to keep this card simple so all the focus would be on the stamped image which is, as you see, the three kings following the star to the stable.  I stamped the image in Versamark, and used some dark blue embossing powder to be sure it would stand out as a nice sharp silhouette.  Next, I used a clear glitter pen to highlight the main star and some of the smaller stars.  Then, I stamped and embossed the sentiment with silver embossing powder.

I wanted to use some ribbon on this card, and chose one with a kind of holographic glitter.  It's somewhat sheer, and allows the color of the card base to show through.  I decided to use a very dark blue cardstock for the base to give the effect of a clear, dark night.

In figuring the placement on the card I had two considerations.  First, I wanted the ribbon to give the effect of extending the light of the star, and so placed it in alignment with the star's rays.  Also, I wanted the ribbon to make the card look like a wrapped gift, thus representing the gift of God to us, his only Son, Jesus, who is the Light of the World.

Here is the full front view of the card:

I wasn't sure they were really needed, but I added some little jewel stickers to two opposing corners.

As you can see in the next photo, I wrapped the ribbons around the front of the card base so that the ends are tucked under the front image, rather than having to add a layer to the inside.  I did the inside sentiment and image on my computer, and colored the image with glitter pens and markers.  The Pinata is another very important part of holiday celebrations in Mexico, which is why I decided to use that for my inside image.

And here is a slightly closer look:

Here is a final view of the card.  (I hadn't finished the inside at the time of the first photos, so you can't see it peeking out in this angled picture.)

Now that you have seen all the details of my card, here is a brief description of Epiphany that comes from Why Christmas? , which is a site where you can read about lots of different Christmas customs from around the world.  The following excerpt comes from the page on Spain, with information  contributed by María Níñez.
"There is another festival that is celebrated in Spain and Mexico that is about the Christmas Story. It is called Epiphany or Kings' Day and is celebrated on 6th January. This is the twelfth night after Christmas. In Spanish, Epiphany is called 'Fiesta de Los tres Reyes Mages': in English this means 'The festival of the three Magic Kings'. Epiphany celebrates when the Kings or Wise men brought gifts to the baby Jesus.
Children have some presents on Christmas Day, but most are opened at Epiphany. Some children believe that the Kings bring presents to them at Epiphany. They write letters to the Kings on Boxing Day, December 26th, asking for toys and presents. And on Epiphany Eve (January 5th) they leave shoes on windowsills or balconies or under the Christmas Tree to be filled with presents. Gifts are often left by children for the Kings, a class of Cognac for each King, a satsuma and some walnuts. Sometimes a bucket of water is left for the camels that bring the Kings! If the children have been bad, the Kings might leave pieces of coal made out of sugar in the presents!
Some big towns and cities have Epiphany Parades with each King having a big float that is shaped like a camel. Sometimes there are also real camels in the parade. The Three Kings in the the Spanish Epiphany are:
  • Gaspar, who has brown hair and a brown beard (or no beard!) and wears a green cloak and a gold crown with green jewels on it. He is the King of Sheba. Gaspar represents the Frankincense brought to Jesus. Frankincense is sometimes used in worship in Churches and showed that people worship Jesus.
  • Melchior, who has long white hair and a white beard and wears a gold cloak. He is the King of Arabia. Melchior represents the Gold brought to Jesus. Gold is associated with Kings and Christians believe that Jesus is the King of Kings.
  • Balthazar, who has black skin and a black beard (or no beard!) and wears a purple cloak. He is the King of Tarse and Egypt. Balthazar represents the gift of Myrrh that was brought to Jesus. Myrrh is a perfume that is put on dead bodies to make them smell nice and showed that Jesus would suffer and die."

Supplies used:
Not included in photo:
          3 additional glitter pens, 2 Bic Mark-It pens, and a partridge in a pear tree.        (Sorry, I simply could not resist that last bit.  LOL)
          Papers:  A2 card base in 'In the Navy' from Gina K Designs, design papers from Busy Scrapper's Solution Christmas Papers by Hot of the Press

I had a great time making today's card, and writing this post.  I hope you've had fun,too, on your visit here!  Sending hugs --I'll see you again soon!!

Always keep your creative genius happy and well-fed!     (Just thought it was time for a little change.)


Thursday, November 10, 2011

Hope, Joy and Love

Food, glorious food!!  It's such an important part of our holiday celebrations.  This week at Card A Day Blog our theme has been Christmas and Food.  I had visions of sugar plums dancing in my head, but I didn't have everything I needed to make them dance on my card.  Sooooo, I decided on candy canes instead.  Such an iconic image of the Christmas season, don't you think?

Of course, I couldn't just lay a couple of candy cane images on a card base, and call it a day.  I wanted to come up with an idea that would be a little more fun and inspiring for you.  I was reading something recently that referred to 'split negatives' using stamping.  I hadn't seen that in awhile, and thought it sounded promising for my card.  For anyone not familiar with that technique; an image is stamped twice, once on dark paper and once on light.  The image on dark paper is then heat embossed in white, while the image on light or white paper is heat embossed in black.  Both images are cut exactly in half, and then half of one is matched with the opposing half of the other.  It's a great effect!  And you can certainly use other sharply contrasting colors if you don't want the stark black and white.

Okay, well, I didn't have a candy cane stamp that I could use that way, but I do have a Cricut machine.  So I did a little search on my Gypsy, and here is what I came up with:

I first cut the main candy cane images and their shadows in the two traditional colors, red and white, and played around with different ways of layering them on various papers (read; scraps  lol).  During the process I came upon a white scrap that I had run through my crimper.  I really liked the texture, so I decided to leave out the shadow cuts, use the crimped piece as one background, and create a second textured background using an embossing folder and my Cuttlebug.  Once I was happy with that I was able to choose the mat and base card papers. 

As I was looking at the basic design and trying to decide on my sentiments, I determined that my candy canes were looking a little flat, so I added some glittered embossing powder.  It was just the effect I was looking for.

In getting ready to assemble my card, my first impulse was to set the candy canes back-to-back, as you see them in the above photo, which looked just fine.  But then the idea of turning them into a heart just jumped out at me.  Christmas is the season of love, after all!  Then, using the heart also gave me the idea for my sentiments which I created myself and printed.

I dressed up the inside of the card a bit with some of the same design paper as the front mat , and used the image shadows to bring the candy cane heart idea to the inside as well.

For the final touches, I applied the sentiments and candy canes to the front with foam tape for just a little more dimension, and added dashed lines on the mat and card base.  I think the white 'stitching' created a nice framed effect.  So, here is the finished card!

I hope I've given you some good ideas today.  Let me know if you have any questions, and I always appreciate your comments!

     Supply Deets:
          Papers:  Papertrey Ink Pure Poppy, Ripe Avocado card base (A2 size - 5 1/2 x 4 1/4) and Rustic Snowflakes design paper stack for mat; Wassau white
          Cricut Cartridge:  Very Merry Tags
          Embossing Folder:  Sizzix Peppermint Twists
          Embossing Powder:  Stampendous Red Tinsel, JudiKins Opaque White
          Glitter Glue:  Stickles Frosted Lace
          Other:  Versamark Watermark Stamp Pad, Cuttlebug, Inkssentials White Opaque Pen and Matte Accents, Fiskars Paper Crimper, tape runner

See you again soon, and always keep your creative genius flowing.........


Saturday, November 5, 2011

Home Sweet Home for Christmas

Happy Birthday to me.....Happy Birthday to me!!!!  Hi everyone!  Yes, today is my birthday so I thought I'd send myself some wishes.  LOL

Welcome!!  As today's designer for the Card A Day Blog I have a very traditional card for you.  Our theme, this week, is 'Christmas at Home,' and all the designers have shared a little bit of their own memories of Christmas.  I chose an adorable image from Nicecrane Designs (no affiliation).  This design was so much fun to color.  I just love the vintage look, and the simplicity of the card itself.  Once the coloring is done, the card takes just a few minutes to complete.

I used mostly Copics to do the coloring, but there was also a Sharpie, a Sakura glitter, an Inkssentials Opaque White and an unidentified silver metallic pen.

I'm not totally certain, but this may be the first time I added no extra embellishments to a card.  It just seemed that the colored image was really all that was needed.  Here are two close-ups:

I'm glad you can see the glitter in the photos; sometimes it doesn't show up too well.  But I think it adds the right touch to this easy to make card.  I created the sentiment on my computer, printed it in a matching green color, cut it out and added the glitter with the Sakura pen.

The inside greeting comes from Waltzingmouse Stamps set, Complements of the Season.  I stamped it using Ancient Page Pine.  I thought it was a perfect match to the outside image.

The nice thing about using digital images is that you can make them any size.  In this case, I made the image 4 1/4" x 3" to fit an A2 card base (Stampin' Up Garden Green), leaving room for the sentiment.  You can use any coloring method that you like.  I used the markers, but you could use pencil, chalk, paint or even color it digitally.  Here is the full front view of my card.  I hope you like it!

Thanks for coming by to visit.  See you again soon!!

Keep your creative genius flowing.........