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December 2008
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February 2009

January 2009

Clean and Simple Isn't So Easy

I loved the Limited Supply Challenge Friday on Splitcoaststampers.  The challenge was to create a Clean and Simple ( CAS) card project.  It should be fairly easy to create a simple card front with very few embellishments but it is a far more difficult task than you would think.  At least for me it is.  I don’t usually use layers and layers on my cards nor do I use lots of embellishments.  I love creating projects that allow the main image or scene to be the star with limited layers for contrast and a simple bow for just the perfect enhancement. With CAS projects you’ve got to create a design that can stand alone and pop to create interest without adding all the wonderful and gorgeous embellishments and layers that we usually love to pile on.

KC Wildflowers 4 My first project is a 3” x 3” gift card with a sweet bouquet of what look to me like snapdragons. I cut my card just a little longer than 6 inches, scored at 3 inches and then scallop punched the border on the longer side. I used a large upholstery needle to pierce the little eyelets on the border.  The bouquet was created by a solid image that I stamped several times. I applied pink ink to the whole image, wiped off the tips of the flowers with a wet wipe, applied green ink with a marker and then stamped. After completing the full bouquet I stamped a few extra green tips to fill in the bouquet. The soft organdy multi loop bow was just the perfect embellishment to complete this sweet and feminine project.

Stamp:  Stampin’ Up! Wildflowers (retired 1997), Paper:  Papertrey White, InkAdirondack Shell Pink, Accessories:  Stampin’ Up! Scallop Punch, Organdy, Upholstery Needle, Adirondack Lettuce Marker

Kc garden pleasures 10 My Second project looks a little more complicated but can stand perfectly on its own and needs no additional embellishment to dress it up. I created an oval mask using a Nestabilities die, centered and attached it on the white cardstock for reverse masking.  The first image I stamped was the hanging hat.  It just screams out that it needs to be hung on a tree out in the garden area so it will always be available for its owner to put on while working in the sun.  The little branch sticking out of the hat with the birdie is so sweet and perfectly unique.  I used an artist pen to sketch a tree large enough to accommodate the hat. I stamped an additional birdie down beside the tree base and masked while adding the green sponged and stamped grass area.  I used a stylus and sponge tip to add the sponged green leaf and ground area and then filled in using grass, mini fern and leaf images. I painted the hat, tree and bird images using  more concentrated reinker mixtures than I normally do as the white cardstock does not hold the true color nearly as well as watercolor paper. I sponged in yellow and blue for the sky. I painted and cut out the frog image, removed the mask and then popped the frog into the scene. I wanted it to be just a little out of the masked area to create interest. 

Stamps:  Stampin’ Up! Garden Pleasure (retired 2001), Kittie Kits Outdoor Master, Paper:  Papertrey White, Ink:  Vintage Photo, Peeled Paint, Faded Jeans, Fired Brick, Barely Banana, Bashful Blue, Accessories:  Clearsnap Stylus and Foam Tip, Inkssentials Ink Blending Tool, Brushes, Artist Pen 

Copic Markers and Expensive Toys

I had to have Copic Markers after I was introduced to them a year or so ago. My friends, Jeanne  and Sherry, are very talented with Copics. I have had the opportunity to watch them both use the markers on several occasions and they both make it look so easy.  I also had an opportunity to watch Debbie Olson and Trudee Sauer demonstrate at the Copic Booth at CHA last year and it was intriguing to see how effortless they could build color and create beautiful shading. You would think with all this wonderful exposure I would have learned a few techniques to be albe to use them with comfort. NOT!!!!!!!!!!!!! 

The Splitcoaststampers Ways to Use It challenge on Thursday was to use alcohol inks in some form or fashion.  Julia also challenged us to step out of our comfort zone.  It doesn't take much for me to be way out of my comfort zone when using Copic's, and since they are the only form of alcohol inks I own I took the challenge.

I stamped and masked my little farm images from an old retired Stampin' Up! set On the Farm. They are fun images that are big enough to color easily even with the large brush tip of the Copic.  The tips of these markers are too big for my comfort level and I think that is the main reason I have trouble with them.  I love to watercolor with small brushes that allow easy build up of color. I colored the images and tried to do some shading with a couple different colors of each ink but decided to give it up and boldly colored with the red, green and blue and forgot about shading.  I created a sky around my images with two blue markers but it was such a disaster that I cut the sky away from the images and popped them up over a cute piece of Papertrey designer paper. I created the frame with Nestabilities, tied my knots and attached my funny cow for an embellishment popped up in front of the scene.

I have thought many times of selling my Copic markers but will keep them. They are paid for and I do use them to color ribbon and small images occasionally.  But….I have learned one lesson with this expensive purchase.  I will no longer buy everything that seems to hit the stamping community like a wild fire. I own Prismacolor  Pencils, SU Watercolor Crayons, Watercolor Pencils…well the list goes on and on.  When it is all said and done I keep reaching for my watercolor brush, bottle of reinker and a little water. Those are the tools that allow me to express my creative passion and that bring me pure joy.

KC On The Farm

Stamps:  On the Farm, Canvas

Paper:  Bordering Blue, Red, White, Papertrey DP

Ink:  Red

Accessories:  Grosgrain, Copic Markers, Dimensionals, Mounting Tape, Nestabilities


Blooming With Love

I got home from work so late on Tuesday night that I didn’t get to play in the Splitcoaststampers Color Challenge but I was intrigued with the color combination- Pacific Point, Baja Breeze and Garden Green. When I got home last night and pulled up the Sketch Challenge I decided to combine challenges and create one project. At first I thought the colors would work great for a beach scene but I kept visualizing using the green with some type of floral image. I found my poor, neglected Blooming With Love set and knew it would be perfect for the layout and color combination.  


KC Blooming with Love 2 I love to add dimension to my projects by cutting out images and popping them up over the images already stamped on the base of the project. I stamped the flower pot images once on scrap watercolor paper and once again on watercolor paper to create the main base layer of the card. I painted the images using a small brush and with reinkers mixed with water.  It is always important to paint the images that are on the base even though you are going to place an image up over it.  This creates the added dimension you want and completes the continuation of the image from one layer to the other no matter what angle you are looking at the project from. I sponged over the images with Barely Banana to create a highlight behind the flowers and stamped grass around the base of the pots. I used rolled up glue dots to attach the pots and vases, the tulip, and the lower section of the topiary greenery to the base.  I sponged the Nestabilities frame with yellow and attached it to the image layer allowing the pots to stick out a little to add to the appearance of dimension. I embossed the light base of the card with the Dot Cuttlebug folder, sponged it a little with yellow to make it match more perfectly the yellow highlight in the scene and attached to the Polka Dot based card front. I crimped the little side tab section, attached to the base and then attached the framed scene.  I thought the little watering can image would be perfect popped up on the outside of the frame as a sort of embellishment along with the multi loop bow. The sentiment was just the perfect size to complete the project.


Stamps:  Blooming With Love, Polka Dot, Kittie Kits


Paper:  Baja Breeze, Vanilla, Watercolor


Ink:  Baja Breeze, Pacific Point, Garden Green, Barely Banana


Accessories:  Grosgrain, Glue Dots, Brushes, Corner Punch, Nestabilities, Cuttlebug, Sponges

Fun with Paper Pleats

The Technique Lover’s Challenge at Splitcoaststampers on Monday was to use paper pleats on our project. My friend, Vicky Gould was the featured stamper on Sunday’s Featured Stamper Challenge and I was inspired by this card and decided to combine both challenges.   I thought it would be fun to do a total “paper” project using no stamps or ink. I changed up the color combination and the embossing folder but kept pretty close to Vicky’s original layout.  This was a quick and fun project.  Congratulations, Vicky!

KC Vicky Featured 

Paper:  Stampin' Up! Designer Paper, White Printer Paper, Real Red, Kiwi Kiss


Accessories:  Papertrey Twill, Martha Stewart Eyelet Border Punch, Photo Corner Punch, Sizzix Heart Die, Cuttlebug Heart Folder