Thursday, April 19, 2018

Ellen Hutson April Pin-Sights Challenge

Hi everyone!  I'm happy to be helping unveil this month's Pin-Sights Challenge at Ellen Hutson.

The Essentials by Ellen Pin-Sights challenge is a monthly inspirational challenge based on a Color Trend Inspirational photo.  This month's is shown above.

There are so many directions you can go with the Pin-Sights board this month I actually had a hard time creating my card.  I started with something very different (and more complicated), but in the end it wasn't speaking to me and I ended up with this much cleaner and simpler card.

I started out using this dot background from the Wonky Backdrops set.  It was stamped on watercolor paper using my MISTI, but instead of using ink, I painted the stamp with watercolors.  I started in one corner with one color painting the first three diagonal lines of dots.  You kind of have to experiment with it - initially it was stamping too dry, so I needed to go back and add water/color until I was happy with the results.  

Then I 'painted' another three diagonal lines of dots - including the last line from the first color so that there was one overlapping line to help with the gradient/color change.  This was repeated again with the last color, and then the entire panel was set aside to dry.  

The flower from the United We Flourish Poppy Fields collaboration set with Altenew was stamped with Versafine on Watercolor cardstock and then embossed with clear embosssing powder to give it a bit of shine and to sharpen/deepen the black color.  

Once the panel was dry, I stamped the sentiment (also from the Poppy Fields set) and the stem with Versafine and then die cut the flower and popped it up.

This card is easily mass producible, but with that watercolored background you'll get a slightly different look every time.

I hope you're inspired to play along with the challenge!  A random challenge participant will receive a $50 gift certificate to the Ellen Hutson store. To be eligible, you MUST use Essentials by Ellen products and the photo badge as inspiration. There will be an inlinkz link up on the challenge post where you can submit your projects.

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Wednesday, April 18, 2018

Spellbinders Blog Hop Featuring Folk Art by Lene Lok

Hi everyone!  I'm really excited to be participating in a blog hop today featuring some of Spellbinder's newest releases.  I'm working with products from Lene Lok's new Folk Art collection for Spellbinders.

If you've been following me for a while, you know that I love Scandinavian designs, so I was really excited to work with these new dies.  I created three cards to share with you today.

My first card features the Floral Mandala die.  This is a beautiful large die that carries the whole card.  To create this card, I die cut the mandala three times.  Once from cream cardstock, once from watercolor paper, and once from black cardstock.

I used the die cut from the watercolor paper as the focal point and colored it using Spectrum Noir Aqua markers.  I also added some additional shading/details using my Prismacolor Pencils.

The colored die cut piece was inlaid into the frame created from the cream die cut and the negative pieces from the black die cut were inlaid in the negative spaces between the flowers and leaves.

This was all arranged over a piece of kraft cardstock, but not adhered.  I then colored the kraft cardstock beneath the flowers using the Prismacolor pencils.  Once that was complete, all the pieces where adhered/inlaid in place.

The sentiment is from my Dala Horse stamp set for Neat & Tangled.

This next card features elements from the Nordic Blooms set.  I love this set because you get so much bang for your buck.  There are 11 dies in the set and countless ways to combine them.  For my card, I cut several of the elements from different cardstocks and arranged them to form a pattern.

The sentiment is from an older Mama Elephant set called Filigree.  Don't you love the great details/texture in these dies?

Finally a very clean and simple card to wrap things up.  This card features the Nordic Floral set.  There are five dies in the set, and I used just the three smaller flowers.  They were die cut in both black and white and then adhered onto some bright cardstock tiles with the white negative pieces inlaid into the black.

A black mat finished things off and I added a sentiment from Neat & Tangled's So Many Sentiments set.

Three very different looks with these folk art dies.  I hope this gives you some ideas on how you might use them!

Every blog hop should have prizes right?  Well if you head over to the Spellbinders blog you can enter to win a $50 gift certificate to the store.  And, I also get to give away a prize!  Leave a comment to be entered to win a $25 gift certificate to Spellbinders.  I'll announce a winner next Wednesday.

Your next stop is Emily Midgett, and the entire hop list is below if you need it.  Happy hopping!

Sunday, April 15, 2018

Die Sale at Ellen Hutson

Hi friends!  Just popping in quickly to let you know there's a sale on dies going on over at Ellen Hutson today through Tuesday using code SPRINGDIES18.

Since dies are pricier than stamps I always try and wait until there's a good sale and that's when I pick up things like cover plates, boxes/bags, alphas, etc.

I've linked a few of my favorites below - I shared a card last week using some Alexandra Renke dies - that particular set is currently out of stock (the brand has been hugely popular!), but linked below are a few from my wishlist that are still in stock.

My all time favorite Altenew layered dies are in stock (only three layers to the flowers here so super easy), and EH still has a few of my Maze Die and Panda Die in stock - those are both currently out of stock at N&T, and the Maze s out of stock at Simon too.

I also linked up my favorite EH stand alone dies since this is the very best time to pick those up as they're exclusive to EH.

As always I recommend checking the Clearance section when there's a sale at EH because those items are already marked down, and you can get a sale on sale when you use the code.

Happy shopping!

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Thursday, April 12, 2018

Colored Pencil GIngko Leaves

Hey everyone!  I'm up over on the Neat & Tangled blog sharing this card today featuring my new Have Courage set.

I so love the look of coloring on kraft, so I stamped the small ginkgo leaf sprig three times on kraft with white pigment ink.  Then I proceeded to color the leaves in with my Prismacolor pencils.  Really easy here, just two colors, I went in first and filled in with the light and then added details with the darker color.  

You can get a wonderful texture from colored pencils that I think really adds a lot to foliage images.

Once the coloring was done, I die cut the springs with the coordinating dies and arranged them around my sentiment.  The sentiment is from the Calathea set and was embossed in white onto a circle.

I fiddled a bit with the placement of the sprigs.  My original plan was to create a circular frame around the round sentiment piece, but I ended up pulling the sprigs out a bit to create a more organic arrangement, plus I like the bits of white that peek through amongst the leaves.

That's all for me today.  Hope your week is going well!

*Affiliate links in text to Neat & Tangled and below to Ellen Hutson 

Wednesday, April 11, 2018

Valkommen - Hero Arts Street Map Background

It's very possible that I check the sale section at Simon Says Stamp with alarming frequency.  That's because they have some crazy amazing steals over there. For example, I picked up this background from Hero Arts for only 99 cents the other day!

HA makes my favorite background stamps, so picking this up at that price was a no brainer.

Because I wanted the streets to be nice and black with white dotted lines, I started with a black base, stamped with Versamark, and heat embossed in white.

I also stamped the background on some green patterned paper and white cardstock.

The green paper pieces were cut out and then pieced onto my black base and the images (trees, houses, etc) on the white cardstock were colored with Copics and then pieced on top of the green. 

I had considered just stamping twice (embossed on black) and then on white and coloring everything, but that seemed like a lot of green coloring, so I opted for the green patterned paper, but it was a little too flat, so I added some very soft shading in a couple corners on each of the rectangles. 

I wanted a 'Welcome to the Neighborhood' sentiment for this, but I looked through all of my sets and shockingly could not find one (this must be rectified), so I went with this sentiment from my Dala Horse set.

This is such a fun background with lots of possibilities!  Best 99 cents I ever spent!  (This background is no longer available at Simon (no surprise there), but you can pick it up at Ellen or Hero Arts.)

Tuesday, April 10, 2018

Congratulations Poppy Flowers - Alexandra Renke

Alexaandra Renke is a company that's been on my radar for a while now, but it's a German company and they've had very limited distribution in the US.  That's why I was so excited to see them showing at Creativation in January, AND that Ellen Hutson decided to start carrying them.

I've been waiting patiently for them to show up at Ellen, and as soon as they did, I placed an order.  I had limited funds, so I opted for this Poppy Flowers set since you get several dies in the set, so a little more bang for your buck.

When I first picked them up, I planned to make a lovely, light, delicate card, but when I pulled them out to play we veered into the bold and graphic.  You'll definitely see the other card another time, but for today, this is what you get.

For this card, I die cut two of the flowers from white cardstock.  I also die cut just the petal portion of the flowers from some mixed media paper that I had painted with Dylusion Ink Sprays in order to get the pieces to inlay.

Finally, the flowers were die cut from a piece of black cardstock which was then adhered to the some black and white striped patterned paper.  Finally, I inlaid the white outline and red petal pieces.

I went with a very simple sentiment from Altenew's Magnolias for Her stamp set.

That's all for me today.  Hope your week is going well!

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Friday, April 6, 2018

Neat & Tangled April Release Wrap Up and Winners

Happy Friday and Happy Release Day!  All of the new April products are now available in the Neat & Tangled store.  Here's a look back the projects I created for this month's release:






I also have some winners to announce!

Congratulations to:

@karen_kards from IG who wins the Have Courages stamp set
cghundley from the blog who wins the Patchwork Fields stencil
@jamieruthp from IG who wins the Inlaid Squares cover plate

Ladies, please shoot me an email and I'll get your goodies out to you.  Thanks to everyone for all your kind comments this week.  If there's something you've got to have from the store, head on over to the store