Friday, 30 December 2016

A few more Christmas Cards - Using one basic layout

Hello my friends.  As I mentioned in yesterdays post, I have created a few more cards using the same basic layout as the card I did for my friend Margaret.  Each one is a little different and unique, but a lot of the work could be done at the same time, assembly line style.  All the stock could be cut at the same time, all the pieces cold be die cut at the same time and the assembly could be done at the same time.  What I like about doing some mass producing of cards is that it is a definite time saver .  What I'm not crazy about when it comes to mass producing cards, is that they are all the same and often one layer and fairly simple...sometimes.  Don't get me wrong.  There are some very beautiful and elegant, yet simple, one or two layer cards that are very effective (I should make a point of trying to make some of them, actually!).  If you have a lot of cards or invitations too make, that is certainly a wise way to go.  Bottom line, they are all still hand-made with love.  I like to go somewhere in the middle.  Using common elements is much more time efficient, but changing up the patterned paper, or colour of stock, the stamped images or the arrangement of the elements is one way to keep each card unique and personal.  Sometimes, the creation of one card will inspire you to create more because you like how it turned out.  This was the case here.  I liked the way Margaret's card turned out, but that card was very personal too her and her husband because of the dogs., so I made some changes.
These cards definitely still took  quire a bit longer than a single layer mass produced card, as each piece was distressed and inked and die cut or trimmed.  But they were quicker than designing four cards from scratch.  Often, I find that the designing of a card takes the most time.  Another good reason to recycle one that you like.  You can take one basic layout and keep it as simple, or make it as complex, as you like.

I don't typically follow a card sketch, but there are some great ones on-line that can get you going when you are stumped.  One that I have used is Mojo Monday.  They have loads of card sketches and do contests and challenges as well.  So if you find yourself stuck when trying to create a card, go back to some of your favourite cards that you have already created for some inspiration, or if you want to try something totally new, try finding a sketch on-line.
This is an example of a Mojo Monday card sketch, follow the link above to have a look at more sketches

Well, I hope this will be helpful when you find yourself in a creative card rut, which happens to most card makers at some point, and are looking for that little push.
Thank you so much for stopping by.  I am looking forward to sharing lots of cards and art and posts with you in 2017.  Please let me know in the comments if there is anything  you would like to see on my blog and I will do my best to make it happen.
Have an awesome and artful day! xo

Thursday, 29 December 2016

Merry Christmas Card

Hello my friends!  Sorry that I have been absent for a bit, but this season is such a busy time.  I hope you are all having a wonderful holiday filled with family and friends and lots of love.   My sister is requesting more Christmas cards, she is not ready to give up the season.  So for the next little while I am going to continue with the Christmas cards.  
This is one that I made using a similar layout to the last card that I posted.  I wasn't going to post this card, but Kerry (my sister) called me and said she was waiting for me to do a new post!  Some of you may have noticed me mention, Kerry.  She lives 3000 miles away on the other side of the country and my blog is one way that I can share my cards and art with her.  So, I decided to post this card, after all.  I also thought it might be helpful to show how you can take the same basic layout and switch it up a bit to get a different card.  I have done another card based on the same format that I will share tomorrow (it just needs a few final touches).

Thank you so much for stopping by!  Again, hoping everyone has a wonderful holiday and all the best for a healthy, safe , happy, prosperous and definitely a creative and art filled New Year!!!  xo

Monday, 19 December 2016

Merry Christmas Card - with some reverse (mirror) stamping

Hello my friends!  A very quick post today.  I have to get to bed, i have to be up early to go to a taping of Cityline!  I am going with my friend Margaret.  I made this Christmas card for her.  I saw this stamp a week or so ago and thought it was perfect for Margaret and her husband as they have 2 Boston Terriers, so I grabbed it!  I hadn't had a chance to make this card, but I wanted to get it done.  I think she would have liked another of my handmade cards, but I thought this would be a lot more personal card.  Besides,  Zoey and Bogart were the reason I bought the stamp!

The interesting thing about this card is that in order to do both dogs, I had to do some reverse, or maybe I should be calling it mirror, stamping.  I did some experimenting.  It's not perfect, but I don't think there is a perfect solution.  But I think it turned out pretty good.  I will tell you that I used my Gelli plate!  I will do a more in-depth look at this technique if anyone is interested.  But I must sign off for now!
Thank you so much for stopping by!  Let me know if you would like to see a post on mirror stamping.  Hopefully I will have some photos of Cityline to share.
Have an awesome day!

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Bogart and Zoey

Friday, 16 December 2016

New Christmas Card - Lawn Fawn Sprinkled with Joy

Hello my friends!  Today i have a new card creation for you.  I really enjoyed building my little scene with the Stampendous Truck and the Tim Holtz die, so I thought I would do another one.  This card was created using the Lawn Fawn "Sprinkled with Joy" stamp and die set, which I just think is sooo fin!  There is and Add-on die available for this set, that turns the oven into an interactive feature.  I got this die and have used it here.  You certainly don't have to get this additional die, but it is fun!  I also used a Sizzix stamp and die set along with the Lawn Fawn set.

I stamped and cut all my pieces using my DIY stamp positioner, which comes in really handy with stamp and die sets. especially if you want to make multiples.  I did, since I had everything out and just put them in (uncoloured) with the set so that the next time I want to make a card, they will be ready to go.

I cut the cookies and cookie cough out of kraft card, and the cookie tray and oven handle out of silver foil board.  I cut the tea towel out of some patterned paper and trimmed a little mat out of some patterned paper as well.  I trimmed out some velum to use for the oven window.
I decided to make this a larger card, so my finished size will be 8.5 x 5.5.  This way I could get a lot of elements in.  Now to build my little scene! I took advantage of the 70% off deal at Michaels and got a patterned paper pad among other things, lol, maybe a little haul post is in order!) and decided to use some of it for the floor and the wallpaper..

 I trimmed some planks out of the wood grain paper and edged them with vintage photo distress ink before adhering them.  I used my Spectrum Noir markers to colour in the stove and all of the other elements. I used patternedcard from another card pack I got at Michaels for the counter.  I trimmed it out and shaded it with the markers.  Once I coloured all my elements. I assembled my card.  I created the cupboards by trimming  them out from some scraps.  I edged them and drew in some handles.

I used a sentiment from a stamp and die set that I have had for ages and never used.  It seemed perfect for this card/

Once my card was all assembled. I mounted it to some embossed card that I had on hand.

Thi card didn't turn out anything like I first envisioned it.  At first the cupboards were going to be white and the stove was going to look like stainless steel.  But once  I started doing the floor and adding the wallpaper, I started to get a retro feel.  I wanted to do the stove like the old "avocado green" stoves from my childhood.  Remember those?

This card took me a while to make, nut itis a fun and interactive.  I hope you enjoyed it!
Thank you so much for stopping by!    Wishing you an awesome and artful day!

Wednesday, 14 December 2016

Cutting thin dies on a Cuttlebug without a C-plate

Hello my friends, thanks so much for joining me!  today's post is written for my sister, Kerry.  She lives about 3000 miles away on the other side of the country.  She has started doing some paper crafting this year and so I decided she needed a Cuttlebug, whether she wanted one or not, lol (I am the bossy older sister, can you tell? lol)  Luckily, she did want one!  However, it does not come with the C-plate which adapts to the thin dies.  This is fairly new to Kerry and she had never used, or even seen the Cuttlebug before it showed up at her door.

 So, I have done some experimenting and am going to try and show her (and anyone else who may find it useful) a way to shim it up for the thin wafer dies.  Right of the top, I want to say that Provocraft, the manufacturer of the machine, and any of it's distributors would probably recommend that you get a C-plate, and not try shimming it.  If you can, that is certainly the best option.  That is what I use.  Please be careful not to shim it so much that you cannot run it through safely.  So as much as I hate to add a disclaimer, you will be trying this at your own risk.  I can say that I had no trouble with this before I got a C-plate and I have been using the shim all night to do my die cutting tonight, instead of the C-plate.  Pay attention to your machine, if it is too thick, don't try and force it.

I used some heavy chipboard from the back of one of my paper pads.  This is the stiff heavy card found on the back of some pads, not the flimsy card.  If that is all you have, though, you can also make that work, you will just need to layer more pieces together.  I placed a B-plate down on the chipboard and traced around it.  Then I cut out 2 pieces. (After using it for a while, I would suggest that you cut them slightly smaller)

The "sandwich" that I used was first, as always, the A-plate, then the 2 shims that I created (cut card), then a B-plate.  Then I put down a sheet of fun foam.  You don't have to do this, but it is something I always do, especially when I am using an intricate die.  I find it seems to cut better, come out of the die easier and does a bit of embossing at the same time with the dies that offer that.  But this is just a preference of mine and totally optional.  On top of the fun foam, or the B-plate if you are not using the foam, I place the paper I am going to cu.  I place my die, cutting edge down, on top of that and then, finally, the second B-plate.  Then I run it through the Cuttlebug.  Each Cuttlebug may be calibrated slightly differently, so you will have to play with your shims.  You want the fit to be tight because you are using the pressure to cut your paper or card.  BUT, DO NOT TRY AND FORCE IT IF IT DOES NOT WANT TO GO HROUGH! You could damage your machine.

I have found it helpful, whether using shims or  a c-plate, to offset the centre of the sandwich just back a bit, so that feeds more easily into the machine.

If you are using several layers of lighter card to shim, then I would suggest that you tape of glue them together so that they are not sliding around.

I hope that you have found this helpful!  Kerry, I hope this helps, give it a try and give me a call!  I will look forward to seeing some photos of your new creations!

Thanks again, for stopping by!  Wishing you all a wonderful and artful day!

Friday, 9 December 2016

A Truckload of Christmas Wishes Ver. 2 - New Christmas card

Hello again my friends!  As promised, here is version 2.  As I am looking at it here, I think it needs a little something more.  I'm not sure what, perhaps the background needs to be a little darker and with more interest.,  You can barely see the snow falling in the background.  I should be able to fix that fairly easily.  There will be a third card in this series, but it requires a little more assembly and it is way past my bedtime!  Teaser alert- I will be combining with a Tim Holtz die!  I will have it posted in the next day or so.

Thank you again for stopping by!  Have a wonderful and artful day!

A Truckload of Christmas Wishes - New Christmas card

Hello my friends!  A new Christmas card to share today.  I have to admit, I'm not usually one to do a lot of colouring.  With my vision it is very difficult, so I tend to keep it very basic and "rustic".  But I had seen this stamp and die set on-line and I just thought it was so cute, I had to have it.  After I ordered it, I saw it at Michaels (where it had not been a couple of days before, lol)  I was so anxious to receive it, but the truth is, things have been so hectic that I am finally just getting to use it now.  I decided to try a little scene building.  So I got out a few more stamps and dies.

(please excuse the photos, I am having some lighting issues right now)

First I stamped my house and created a mask to cover it while I created a background.  I used Broken China distress ink for my background and splattered it with some Heidi Swapp white Color Shine.  I used some torn paper to create my snow drifts.   I used my Spectrum Noir markers to colour th truck and presents and the house.  The window actually die cuts right out of the truck, but I popped it backed in and added a suggestion of a driver.  I thought a driverless truck would be a little creepy!  I used my snow marker to add some snow to the trees and house.

Once all my colouring and die-cutting was done, I assembled my card.  I added some shimmer with my Wink of Stella.  I mounted the card-face to some patterned paper to vorder it, and then to my card base.

I also cut and coloured a few more trucks at the same time, so I will be posting another card shortly that I have just about finished,  Then there will be another card coming down the pipeline soon.  I feel it makes sense to use your materials while you have them out.  but you don't necessarily have to make them all the same, although mass producing isn't a bad idea, either.  So if you like this card (which I hope you do because it was fun to make!)  Then check back in to see the next version very shortly.
Thanks so much for stopping by!

Monday, 5 December 2016

"Merry Christmas" new Christmas card

Hello my friends!  A very quick post to share my latest card with you.  I was looking for a poinsettia die  and I found this stamp and die set..  I actually passed it by a few times because I didn't like the way the example looked.  I do have some poinsettias dies, but not one that I love.  After about the third time I was at the store (Michaels) and during a 50% off deal, I finally gave in.  I'm glad I did because I do like it.  I hope you do, too!

The Merry Christmas sentiment was from my stash.  It is an Yvonne Creations die from Find It Trading.

Thanks so much for visiting and make sure to check back in for more Christmas cards.  Feel free to share with anyone you tihnk may want some  holiday card inspiration.
Have an awesome day!

Sunday, 4 December 2016

Winter Wonderland II- A secon version of my latest Christmas card

Hello again my friends!  While I had everything out, I thought I would make some more cards.  I didn't have any more of the patterned paper that I used on the first card.  I decided to go with white on white.  I embossed the white card.  I used some distress ink to blend a background and splattered it with some water and Heidi Swapp spray.

Thank you again for stopping by.  I hope you enjoyed my second version of my Christmas card.  This is a card that has several layers, but would still be suitable for making multiples. I would love to know which version you like best! 
Have an awesome day! 

Winter Wonderland Christmas Card

Hello my friends!  Just a quick post today.  I am sitting here listening to some Christmas music and back to making some cards.  I thought I would quickly share my latest.  Some of you have been watching me make Christmas cards and tags all year and now I am finally "in season"!

Thank you so much for stopping by!  I hope you enjoyed this latest card.  If you like Christmas and holiday cards, make sure to check back in for some inspiration because I will be making more!
Have an awesome day!