Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Santie Claus is Coming!

Or maybe not.  Maybe he's just going to stay home this year and put his feet up.  Gosh knows I'd like to be doing that.

The A Muse Studio Challenge blog, located HERE, has a challenge this week that is SO easy, even you can do it!  With a hand tied behind your back!  In your sleep!   Okay, that hand tied thing might make it a little more challenging, but still you could join too.

The challenge is to make a winter holiday card: Christmas, Chanukah, Kwanzaa, First Day of Winter, Festivus, etc.  Since it is the A Muse Studio challenge, they prefer that you use A Muse Studio stuff, but it is not a requirement.  How easy is that?!  I’ve been doing that for the last several weeks. 

I have been using a lot of a|s stuff to make holiday cards but I didn’t feel right using a card I already made for this challenge.  I felt I should make a new card just for this challenge (and then add it to my holiday stash).   I also figured I should toss as much a|s stuff into it as I could, so here it is in all its glory:
 The stamp comes from the Christmas Carol set, which I’ve used a lot recently, but the funny thing is I’ve not used this stamp from it before.  So how nice for it to finally get used!

Also, if you are fan of A Muse Studio (and who isn't?) starting tomorrow they will be having a 20% off sale on Ten Holiday Must-Have Items!  That includes baker's twine, holiday washi tape, some stamp sets, the stardust finishing spray, glitters, inks, calendars, and kraft cardstock.  *swoon*

The Fine Print: Everything by A Muse Studio, “Christmas Carol” set, vanilla, evergreen, and cranberry cardstock, candy cane striped paper, black brads, and cherry twine.  Okay, I lied I used my Fiskars metal ruler to distress the edges of the one layer.  Maybe someday I’ll try the a|s edge distressing doo-hickey.

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

And a Partridge in a Pear Tree....

I have some more Rule of Five cards to share that I made this past weekend.  

I decided that I should wiki “partridge” to see what color they are, but I also knew that I didn’t care what color they were.  I already knew that I was going to make them whatever color suited my fancy, but for some reason it was important to me to know what one looked like.  Yeah, so that partridge is not a very exciting looking bird.  I think we need to re-write the song to be a peacock in a pear tree just to bring some zing to the whole thing.
So what comes first, you ask?   No, this isn’t the chicken and egg debate; this is a question about how I make my cards.  I’m often asked how I come up with the ideas and really, it depends.  For my Rule of Five cards I came up with the stamp first and then the background papers.  The background papers gave me some idea what colors to use when coloring in the stamped image.  I don’t always work this way, but that’s how these cards came into being.

I also noticed that these cards were getting really predictable in their layout so I wanted to change things up a little bit.  I pulled out some sheer ribbon for one card, turned a bow sideways for another, put a knot thing on another and skipped ribbon on one card altogether.  One card doesn’t have two shaped layers and one card has three of them. A couple cards even have a small greeting on the front.  I didn’t want to make radical changes because this is my card style and my ultimate goal is to make a mass of cards for The Holiday That Shall Not Be Named (cuz it’s a’coming!)
The Fine Print: Partridge in a Pear Tree stamp by AMuse Artstamps, small greetings by A Muse Studio, shaped punches by Marvy, scallop border punch by EK Success, papers on the first card by unknown, the rest by DCWV.

Monday, November 28, 2011

No Rules Today

Happy Cyber Monday!  Are you completely stuffed from gorging yourself this weekend?  Have you totally over-indulged at the dinner table and the shopping malls?  Are you already sick of The Holiday That Shall Not Be Named?  Well, too bad, the holiday madness must continue!

Bawhahahaha   (that’s evil laughter in case you didn’t catch that).
 The Fine Print: Snowman stamp by Inkadinkado, Whizzing Dog by Art Impressions, Merry Christmas from the dollar bin.

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Rule of Five Continues On...

Surely, you don't think I gave up already?  The holiday season is still young, even if I'm not!  So yesterday, I told y'all about my brilliant (and possibly diabolical) plan where I would pick 5 different stamps and makes 5 different cards with each stamp for a total of 25 cards.  Or maybe I didn't mention the "different" part but that was part of the plan.  Of course, there is nothing wrong with duplication it just wasn't in the plan.

I broke my own rule right off the bat by being inspired by the blue snowflake background card.  I liked that it was blue, as blue seems like a great color to do with snow and sleigh riding and when I pawed through my huge box of holiday paper there seemed to be a lot of blue.  A lot of blue.  A. Lot.

On that note I decided that my next lot of 5 cards would be made with the same stamp but using different blue papers in the background. Like last time all these images are glittered but you can't tell by the scans.  I used ribbons, a snowflake punch, and some bling for these two cards.

I ditched the ribbon for the next card and used a different snowflake punch.  This card also has a dark blue background.  For all the blue I have in the holiday paper stash, very little of it is dark blue.  I was pleased how the red layer at an angle came out.  Usually when I try that, it looks off, but it worked fine here.

These last two cards have a lot of similarity.  They both have light blue backgrounds, a scalloped edged border, ribbon along the side, and are colored in a like manner. Yet for all the similarities, they have a different feel to them.

Those are my latest in my Rule of Five Quest.  I hope you enjoyed them and have been inspired to work on your own cards for The Holiday That Shall Not Be Named.

The Fine Print: Stamps by A Muse Studio "Christmas Carol" set, background papers by DCWV, snowflake punches by Martha Stewart, small scallop border done with decorative scissors (probably Fiskars), large scallop border by Fiskars border punch, miscellaneous ribbon and bling.

Saturday, November 26, 2011

The Rule of Five

So the other day I came up with this brilliant plan.  I would pick five stamps for the Holiday That Shall Not Be Named and make five cards with each stamp.  When I was done I would have completed 25 cards for the Holiday That Shall Not Be Named and life would be all butterflies, sunshine and happiness.

Wasn't that a great plan?  I thought so, too.  Then I started out on this first card with its ultra-busy striped background. First I had to fuddle with this and then fuddle with that and it took me a long time to get just this one card.  Hey, but only 24 more to go, and I could make things easier on myself by picking a better background paper.  So the next card was born.  But darn it all, it had stripes too, albeit sideways ones.  I had to fuddle with it one way and then another before I felt the stripes weren't that dizzying.  But hey!  Only 23 more to go!

Next up, I thought I'd use some soothing snowflake paper.  Just because "snow" is a 4-lettered word and we try to avoid it at all costs in Southern Arizona, doesn't mean I can't craft with it (besides I'm mailing this snow to someone else!).  My original intent was to put a ribbon with a cheater bow on it, but after I adhered the ribbon strip on I felt it needed some jewels.  Yeah, well, it had the same design as the last card, but who's counting?! Wait!  I am!  23 more to go!

I love red and brown for the Holiday That Shall Not Be Named, so this red and kraft background begged to be used.  And used it was:
 Knowing I only had 21 more cards to go as part of my diabolical, but brilliant, plan, I plodded along and pulled out a green snowflake background.  Green snowflakes?!  Well, we could work with it.  With that the frist five of my Rule of Five were complete.
Then I got waylaid and realized that I didn't feel like making any more cards for the Holdiay That Shall Not Be Named.  Not right now anyway...   Stay tuned to see if I get back on track.

The Fine Print: Stamps by A Muse Studio "Christmas Carol" set, background papers by DCWV, unknown ribbon and bling, and lots of Sticklers glittler glue, but you can't tell it from a single one of these scans.

Friday, November 25, 2011

Gimme Gimme Gimme

Hello and Happy Black Friday to y'all!  So did anyone get up at midnight to go shopping?  How about 4 am?  Did you push and shove people?  Did you get pushed and shoved? Did anyone trample their fellow man?  Did you get trampled?  Did you spray pepper spray into anyone's face so you could buy cheap electronics?!  Fess up!  Did you?!?! 

Well, maybe you didn't, but someone did.  Sometimes I'm embarrassed by my own species.  Based on this card today I can say I had a good day.  I hope you can say so too.
And while I did have some perverse desire to show up at some big box store at some ungodly hour to buy laundry soap,  I did not partake in any retail madness. I only happened to be awake at midnight because buckets of rain, no wait, make that swimming pools-full of rain came out of the sky and it was loud.  I'm sure I was asleep and drooling on myself at 4 am.  I spent the day leisurely having a delectable lunch at a nice place downtown and then going to the art museum.  And for those of you not familiar with Tucson, downtown is not a mecca for retail shopping.

I haven't done anything crafty today (yet!). I still have the goods from my magazine to play with and the Fed Ex dude delivered me a pizza box from Club Scrap, so there could be playing soon.  Here are a couple of cards I made in the past that I thought I'd share just for the heck of it. 

The Fine Print: Striped card base by DCWV, "Good Day" saying by Inkadinkado, kid stamp by Rubber Baby Buggy Bumpers.  Other two cards made from a My Mind's Eye kit, enhanced with bling and Prima flowers.

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Happy Thanksgiving & ABC Challenge

Fido the cat says:
Happy Thanksgiving

And keep scrolling down for the challenge....

I  made this origami tree inspired by my Quick Cards magazine.  Origami usually makes me crazy because I rarely understand the directions but this one was easy.  The hard part was getting a photograph where the flash didn't shine off the slick origami paper. I thought it was a fun card and I just might make some more of them,you never know.

Earlier I said stay tuned and see what other things the day brings. So here you go, I made a little something for the A Muse Studio Challenge.  This time the challenge was to make Anything But a Card (also called ABC).

I don't tend to make things that aren't cards. I mean, what do you do with it? I have plenty of stuff already!  But I decided that I could turn an ordinary mini composition book into a fancy one.  I got the idea from a class at my big stamp club meeting, where this what the project.  Of course, the one there wasn't done up all A Muse fancy, but mine here is.

I covered both the front and back cover with A Muse's gingham paper.  I love a|s's gingham paper!  It is almost dizzying to look at a full sheet of it because it is a small, tight gingham but it is so awesome with their stamps.  The original mini comp book had very slightly rounded corners.  I decided to use my corner rounder instead of scissors to round down the gingham layer.  I realized the corner round was also going to nip off some of the cover, but thought nothing of it.  Until I did it.  Then I realized that the pages of book now stuck out past the rounded corners.  To remedy that I went through and rounded the corners on every page.  Luckily it is text weight paper so I could do many pages at once! 

The small plastic "jewels" on the front cover are these plastic half beads that come out of the floral department of the craft store.  You then take a few of them, put them in a small plastic zip lock bag with a few drops of alcohol ink.  You then squidge the ink and the beads around until the beads are covered.  Viola!  You have a much cheaper version of Dew Drops (or whatever they call those colored plastic half beads!).  I didn't make these ones, but have made some in the past.  I also learned that if you don't have the right color alcohol ink you can use a small round hole punch to punch out a circle the size of the bead in a colored paper.  Then use clear glaze to stick the bead to the colored paper and it reflects into the bead making it look that color.
   So that's my Any But a Card challenge!

The Fine Print: Origami paper from Accord Publishing-Fold a Day Calendar, background and glitter paper by DCWV, greeting by A Muse Studio.  Mini composition book from Walgreens (also seen at Office Max), A Muse Buttercup gingham paper, Spellbinders Labels Eleven die, A Muse stamp from "Friend to Friend" set, A Muse papaya polka dot ribbon, and plastic doo hickeys courtesy of Sue!