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November 2007
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December 2007

Another Year Ends

My father always said that the older we get the faster time  passes. It certainly is true. This has been an eventful year for me and my family, both wonderful and sorrowful. My husband, Bob and I have been blessed and are getting ready to celebrate our tenth anniversary. Bob has enjoyed his tenth year as an "Audio Genius" working for Micky Mouse's Epcot as a sound engineer. We lost our wonderful brother, Dan who was married to our baby sister, Jeannie and this broke all of our hearts. As we grieved Dan's loss we also worried about our Jeannie girl and their son, Sam. Jeannie was promoted to a vice presidency with the National Association of Home Builders and we are all very proud of her accomplishments especially in such a trying year for her. My nephew, Sam made the highest grades ever this term and continues to be on the honor role and has accomplished this even after loosing his father. My older sister, Cynthia is a nurse and has been ill for several months but is finally regaining her health and has been able to return to her work. We are all so thankful.  My brother-in-law Lou, loves teaching at Devry University and made the decision not to retire (he must be crazy). He is incredibly talented and loved by his students. My sister, Cheryl and her husband, Jim have a thriving landscaping business and never seem to stop for a minute. Cheryl is our oldest sister and has been the matriarch of our family since we lost our parents. She is my "go to girl" for all business discussion and advise (....well all kinds of advise) as she is smart and most talented. She also took wonderful care of our baby sister during the loss of her husband.

One of my big thrills this year was to be invited to be a member of the Dirty Dozen Design Team. I have found this experience to be most gratifying and educational for me.  I was also invited to be on the My Favorite Things Design Team and served with them for several months. I am now serving on the Rubbernecker Design Team and enjoying myself so much. These experiences are creating memories for me to treasure as a stamper.  I have felt most honored and complimented.

Happy New Year to each of you.  Enjoy every day and live it to the fullest.  We are not practicing for another life...we are living it today.

Split Negative In Color

The challenge on Splitcoaststampers today is to create a Split Negative only instead of doing it in black and white we were to do it in color.  This was a fun challenge that took me out of my "normal scene box" and having me turn to distressed and western.  I also have the advantage of another good guy card which I never seem to have enough of.

I pulled out all my designer paper and decided it would be fun to use the Stampin" Up! Outlaw. I pulled out Bronc Buster set and found this big buckle that I had made for a Dirty Dozen project and never used. I cut two pieces of designer paper exactly the same size and placed them side by side perfectly so I could stamp my cowboy and horse image.  I used craft chocolate chip ink and embossed with clear embossing powder. I cut an additional piece of coordinating Outlaw paper for the bottom and pieced them all together. I sponged vintage photo and old paper distress ink all around the borders of the image layer. I cut a piece of close to cocoa paper and used vintage photo distress ink directly to all the borders of it to create a dark finish and then dry embossed a snake skin pattern on it using a Cuttlebug folder. I cut an additional section of the snake skin to use as an embellishment for the buckle and to cover the edges of the different paper pieced together. I lightly used the same distress ink directly to my sage base card to create interest and age but to allow the color to show. I added copper brads to all four corners that I aged and darkened with a dark brown copic marker.  I liked the look of the brads so I added some copic marker to the buckle as well to tame down the copper shine.  I cut around the brown border with deckle scissors and then ran the scissors around all the edges to tear and to create a curling effect like old, dried up snake skin. I thought the rope was a great finishing touch and would look great under the popped up buckle.  I really like the way this turned out.  I can't wait to see what kind of review I get from my friend, Sherry, the "Queen of Distressing".  She is always encouraging me to step out of my box and I certainly did today.


Stamps: Bronc Buster, Itty Bitty Background

Paper:  Outlaw Designer Paper, Sage Shadow, Close to Cocoa

Ink:  Chocolate Chip, Ranger Distress Inks -Vintage Photo and Old Paper

Accessories:  Copic Marker, Copper and Clear Embossing Powder, Twine. Brads, Sponge, Cuttlebug, Deckle Scissors

Gone Fishin'

Sunday is the Featured Stamper challenge and it is always fun to check out other galleries for inspiration.  Today's featured stamper is Danielle but we know her as dlounds on Splitcoaststampers. I chose a card of Danielle's with a great layout and lots of room on the main image layer for a scene.  I have needed some guy cards lately and needed to replenish my stash. I have had these "fishing images" from Rubbernecker for a while and just have been so busy with the holidays and other stamping obligations I have not had a chance to use them. I have dedicated today as a fun stamping day for me to play and experiment.  Not only do I use watercolor brushes for my scene cards but I also use daubers, sponges, mini tipped applicators and almost anything else I can get my hands on.  Today I wanted to experiment with adding texture to my ground and leaf area with a tool made by Tsukineko called Fantastix.  The one I used today is a sponge type brush point but there are many other shapes. I stamped my fish and rod on my paper and then used an artist pen to sketch in the tree lines around the images.  I painted the tree with Vintage Photo Distress reinker and used a dauber to apply Peeled Paint Distress ink to the upper tree and ground area.  I used a dry brush (brushed directly to ink pad) to apply Weathered Wood Distress ink for the water.  I used the Fantastix brush point and a mini tipped sponge applicator to add texture to the grass and along the water's edge. I painted the fish with Weathered Wood Distress reinker and some Adirondack Pebble reinker. I used Scattered Straw reinker for the rod handle and then sponged it along the ground and sky area. I added a little Weathered Wood sponging in the sky as well.  I stamped my sign, painted it with Vintage reinker and cut out to create my little sentiment layer.  I used twine from the hardware store to create the rope hanger.  Since this is a guy card I decided to rough up all the edges of the layers for interest and texture.  I did have to add a little sparkle to the fish and reel with a Gelly Stardust pen but don't think it shows in the photo.  I used a sponge on a stick that is normally used for sponging on Mod Podge to sponge on a background to the green layers. This was a simple and yet very fun scene to create.


Stamps:  Rubbernecker -Fishing

Paper:  Artichoke, Blue, Watercolor

Ink:  Black Brilliance, Ranger Distress Ink and Reinkers, Adirondack Ink and Reinkers

Accessories:  Watercolor Brushes, Sponge Daubers, Fantastix, Gelly Stardust Marker, Distressing Tool, Twine, Deckle Scissors, Artist Pen

Cocktail Dress Inspired Sparkle and Distressed

You are asking yourself what in the world my title means?  The Inspiration Challenge on Splitcoaststampers today has a cocktail dress as our piece of inspiration.

Have you ever started a project that took more sharp turns than you could have expected? As I was not actually inspired to do a dress themed card I was inspired to hand paint some eggplant colored tulips and green stems.  The bottom of the dress has swirly flower stems and flowers that look sort of like tulips. I wanted to use the eggplant and yet still pick up on the shiny creamy color of the top of the dress. After I painted all the flowers and stems I was not really satisfied that they look substantial enough so I added a little depth to them by adding lines and etchings with my artist pen. That seemed to make them pop. Somehow my card went from being a light little watercolor and transitioned into a distressed piece with more sparkle than it ever should have had.  After I sponged both the flower layer and the main layer with Distress Ink I decided to lightly dust them both with Iridescent Ice Embossing Powder and heated. I also added a bit of Stickles to the base of the flower bed and a few of the flowers. The top of the dress has shimmery sparkles and that is what I was going for. I am not so wild about the sparkly distressed look but I am very happy with my little free hand flower garden. Being happy with the experience is really what the whole thing is about.


Stamps:  Sanded and Itty Bitty Background

Paper:  Watercolor, Eggplant, Naturals Vanilla

Ink:  Adirondack Eggplant and Pesto Reinkers and Pads, Distress Ink Antique Linen 

Accessories:  Brads, Stickles, Iridescent Ice, Grosgrain, Deckle Scissors, Distressing Tool, Watercolor Brushes, Sponges, Artist Pen

Follow The List

The Limited Supply Challenge on Splitcoaststampers is always fun as it makes me go back to basics.  I have not always had every known stamp and ink to man.  When I first started I had a few stamps, ink, Office Depot cardstock and a little ribbon.  Not only were my supplies limited but so was my experience as a stamper.  It is good to go back and remember "when" and work to make a card with the limitations set out in the challenge.  The challenge today was to follow the list of of limitations and instructions below.

Follow the List


one stamped image that can be colored
optional: sentiment
optional: an image to ground the main image like an oval, grass, etc.

any shade of white
2-3 patterns of designer paper
NO other colored cardstock

NO specialty tools (No punches, No CB, No Piercer, etc)
any coloring tools
sponges OK

one piece of ribbon

Dimensionals are an adhesive!

I chose to use a cat image and sentiment from Rubbernecker Stamp Company.  I painted the cat and cut it out to pop over the sentiment.  I used a marker to create a faux border around the sentiment and base layer of the card.  I used a brush to hand paint a little spilled vase of flowers and water under the sentiment to show something to blame the poor dog for.  I used Wild Asparagus Designer Paper to add color and because it was still out from another challenge this week.


Stamps:  Rubbernecker

Paper:  White, Wild Asparagus Designer Paper

Ink:  Black Brilliance, Ranger Distress Pad and Reinker and Adirondack Pad and Reinker

Accessories:  Copic Marker, Brush, Grosgrain, Dimensionals