The musings and offerings of a burgeoning greetings master

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Mr Cardmaker's Spring has Long Been Sprung

Ok, so I should've pulled this one ages ago, because it IS a Spring card, or at least to my mind it is, and I am terribly out-of-date with it, but here we go.
So, in the interest of making sure my stash was stuff that I actually USE, I pulled out a couple of dies that I had sort of put away in frustration; mainly because I couldn't get a decent CUT from them.
This was before I finally invested in a metal shim for the old Cuttlebug.  I can't remember where I got it, but this thing has changed my life, fo' reals.
I made this--

Isn't this oh so artsy-fartsy?  I kinda dig it, actually.  I like the not-centered-but-kinda-balanced thing it has, and I like the tiny pops of color in the flowers on the wreath.  I used some white Enamel Accents to make what I am calling buds on the tree.

Oh yeah.  The tree?  That %#$-er STILL has one place it doesn't cut properly. Whatever...I DO own some snips...

PS-I tried to recreate this for Mother's day cards.  Forgot the clouds. Just not the same...*sigh* 

I DO have some more up-to-date stuff to show you, I promise.  Stay tuned.

Thanks for stopping by!
All Best-

Monday, September 29, 2014

Mr Cardmaker Has All the Coffee Goodness without the "Nervous and Jerkies"

This is my second posting today.  Scroll down for more!
Well, I was caught up in the maelstrom that is the Coffee Lovers Bloghop, today, and at the last minute, I decided to run to the craft room and come up with an entry.

I have ONE coffee stamp set, which is weird, considering my GREAT love of coffee AND stamping, and I used it to make a mask, so I could stamp this--

Please forgive my photo quality today. I am out of AA batteries for my camera, so I had to use my phone.  Foo...

Well, I am SO bummed that the gold did not photograph.  There is a beautiful gold wash on all of the cups, and over the lettering.

Maybe in this view?
Well, this is a tiny bit better.  Anyway, I love that I was able to stamp this multitude of coffee cups, and with the help of some copics, I gave them some depth and movement.  I used some Distress Ink on the edges, and it really made a BIG difference on giving the cups depth and that "coffee goodness" feeling.
I embossed the sentiment with Early Espresso embossing powder from Stampin' Up, and I think it's a MUCH better choice here over black. Plus, the shine is so nice!
I placed my bling in such a way that it is only a partial reveal behind my image panel, so as not to let it take too much focus.

The interior employed some paper piecing, and a VERY vintage-y look, thanks to my inky fingers--
Again, sorry for the quality of the photo...

I LOOOOOOOVE coffee!  Juan Valdez should be canonized, IMHO!

I am SO glad I made it in on the fun today.  Everyone has done an AMAZING job!

Thanks so much for stopping by!
All Best--

Mr Cardmaker Contemplates His Pile

Did you ever look at your pile of crap stash of supplies and wonder "WHY do I have so MUCH stuff? And what exactly of it am I using?"
Yep.  Had that moment.  Did I respond by doing a big, deep culling of my crap  stuff, and going bare-bones?  NOPE!  I mere decided that it was time I started pulling out the stuff I hadn't used, and putting it (or at least, SOME of it) to work.
I made this--

So, yes, I HAVE used this stamp set and dies many times, and I will continue to do so, because I love it.  However, I have sort of moved away from using tons of patterned paper( or maybe I just feel like I have), so I pulled out several pieces of the hoard, and used them in my layering. 

Two of those papers are form my FIRST shopping trip to buy crap  initial supplies. The FIRST one. 

I also hadn't used my basic shapes dies like I should, considering the HUGE investment that lives in my craft room.  Not like this circle is any great shakes, People, but you gotta start SMALL.

Oh, yeah, I also used the smallest flower die from Spellbinders to make the sun.  I don't think I have EVER used the smallest die in any of my die sets...Isn't that weird?

Anyway, I like how the leaves manage to look like they're growing out of the circle and taking over the card.  I also love my Enamel Accents berries. S'nice...

So, the challenge to use my crap beloved stash continues.
Stay tuned.
Thanks so much for stopping by!
All Best-

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

The Rewards of Being a Corporate Weekday Widower

Well, this has been an exceptionally busy year of travel for the Hubby.  He's been to China and Malaysia, back and forth to Massachusetts about 10 times, AND he's got to go BACK to Malaysia for 17 days, and more Boston area trips to come, too.  Luckily, the Boston trips are usually over on Friday, so we get the weekends.  Max the Beagle and I are definitely getting some bonding time for sure. 
Well, there is a small silver lining to being without the man for these chunks of time--The GIFTIES!
I have Fabulous Starbucks mugs from all these places (Do YOU have a Malaysia mug?  I do!), and when he finds them, he brings me home STAMPS and stuff. A keeper, that one!
 Well, I just invested in the first 9 sets of mini Distress Ink pads. I REALLY want the latest 3 sets, and the tins, of course, but I am not working these days, and the holidays will be rearing their ugly heads soon, so...
But I got to playing with them.  I had never known that much about them, what they could do, etc, so I was really happy to watch some YouTube videos from Kristina Werner and Jennifer McGuire.
Well, using one of the stamp sets Charlie found me from Cloud Nine Designs, I came up with this--

Listen, Paris is ALWAYS a good idea.  TRUST ME.
Another view--
So, there's a ton of blendy action going on here, Just tons and tons of ink.  I also did a good bit of water play, moving the ink around, and lifting it off in places.  I did some stamping, then more blending, then some more stamping.  The finish here was some enamel dots, and because I didn't have one small enough, a tiny dot of Enamel Accents.  Love that stuff!

For the inside, there were some stamps I hadn't used--
One stamp, one ink, and a waterbrush got this done.
So that's my card. 
Oh yeah, I forgot to mention that I was off on my own adventure two weeks ago. I went to Daytona Beach to see my Dad and siblings.  I stayed at my sister's beautiful home, where we had our morning coffee on her dock, with delicious warm breezes blowing over us. Heaven.
Max was happy to have me come home, even if he did make some good friends at his care center.
Thanks so much for stopping by!
All Best-

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Mr Cardmaker is Present.

Keeping up with my challenge blogs is really fun, but I find that my day gets sucked up by the time I make the card, photograph it, edit the photo, and then compose a blog post about it.

Does anyone else find this happening to them, or am I just bad at time management?

Oh well, who needs clean laundry and mopped floors anyway?

I made a card to enter in the Merry Monday and Festive Friday challenges this week.  How's THAT for saving energy?  (Now let me tell you the story of how long it took to come up with the concept that fit both challenges...)

Well, I liked the woodsy look and dark green of the Friday inspiration, and the gift idea, of course from Monday's challenge...

I made this--


I started with a wood grained background, via some kraft card stock and an embossing folder.

I then found my very darkest green card stock (of which I had a teensy scrap left), trimmed and dry embossed it, wrapped it with dark red ribbon to make it "gifty",backed it with some gold card stock, and popped it onto the base with foam adhesive. I finished off my "gift" by hot gluing on a happy little bow.
Glossy accents spreads on ribbon, by the way. Ask me how I know that...

I returned to the woodsy idea by using two wood veneer pieces, one on top of the other, to dress things up a bit.  I painted the tree with some diluted gold ink to give some shine, yet let the wood grain show through.

A better look of that--

And one more view of the card--

I like the darker, rich look that I get from this card. I like that the wood veneer is the bright spot.

So, I think that just about does me in for challenges this week, but I never say never, so stay tuned.

Thanks so much for dropping by!
All Best--

Mr Cardmaker's Absence.

Making a sympathy card is really much more difficult that I expected.  It needs to be simple yet elegant, and peaceful. It takes thought and care, and reverence.

There's a big couple of messes in my trash can right now, where I really whiffed, trying to make this work.  Then I looked at the piece of watercolor paper that I was meaning to use on the inside of my card, and I finally found my idea.

White. Absence of color. Well, mostly.

I made this--

The watercolor blot with the gold was my starting point. I thought watercolor was soft and dreamy, and under the sentiment it just seemed exactly right. The sentiment is from Papertrey Ink, and I think it is just lovely; a perfect size and font.

With no color to work with, I turned to texture. A simple, dry embossed white panel with a cluster of leaves "growing" out from under it; some adhered with foam adhesive. I worked with all watercolor paper, which is not pure white, and mounted everything onto a pure white base. I think the tiny bit of contrast is nice here.

The sequins are soft and mostly whitish, with just a blush in places to refer to the watercolor. I found they looked more restrained poking out from under the leaves, for the most part.

I had to make myself walk away from this card at least three times.  Restraint.....

One more view--

Thanks for stopping by.
All Best--

I am using this card in the CASology "Under" Challenge.

Mr Cardmaker is a Starmaker

Well, I managed to get in the doors of the now gone-but-not-forgotten Archivers store in my area just before  they closed a while back, and while it was WAY picked over, I found a few goodies.  One of them was a Sizzix star die set. 

I love stars.  They can be used for so many things, and they are so wonderfully strong and dynamic.  Great for men's cards, great for July 4, Christmas, New Years, baby cards...everything. 

I decided to enter a couple of challenges this week--

A Blog Named Hero Challenge #51 Spell it out for me!
Simon Says Stamp Monday Challenge Go Boldly into Stamptember
Simon Says Stamp Wednesday Challenge-Anything goes STAMP

I made this--

Ok, so, I think this fits these challenges pretty well.  Bold, yes.  Lots of stamped words, yes. 
I used a beautiful Cosmo Cricket 8x8 pad called TV Dinner to make most of these stars, with some card stock ones thrown in too.  The recipe card is also cut from this pad.  So cute!
The stamps are from Paper Smooches Many Thanks.
Wouldn't this be great for someone who invited you to a dinner party?  Why, yes. Yes it would!
The inside looks like this (just not as wonky as the photo would show)--

I was pretty happy with this one, all in all. The dimension is really fun.

So, that's my card.

Thanks for stopping by!
All Best--