Archive for the ‘Challenges’ Category:
Finally it's Valentine's Day, and I get to share my last Valentine's Card for this year with you. Actually, this "Love" card would be good for lots of occasions. But I have one special sweetheart to whom I'd like to give a flower today, and this kind of flower is the perfect kind for him. It also falls right into today's beginning of the biweekly Stampin' Up! Only Challenge (suochallenges.com)! That's because our challenge this time is to feature products from Stampin' Up!'s Sale-a-bration catalog. Actually, before this challenge is over, I think I can say, "catalogs" as, starting a week from today, there will be an additional flyer with three new Sale-a-bration products available with any Stampin' Up! $50 purchase!
This card features two Sale-a-bration products! The ribbon is one of the two spools in the 3/8" Metallic Ribbon Combo Pack in the original 2017 Sale-a-bration Catalog. And the Bermuda Bay Glimmer Paper will be in the 6" x 6" Glimmer Paper Assortment Pack, available next Tuesday. I've already shared some paper from this pack with you in the last week, but this is your introduction to the Bermuda Bay color. Is this not just the prettiest Glimmer Paper?! And, of course, you know by now (if you've been reading my posts) that the Sunshine Wishes Thinlits Set is unavailable for ordering until two weeks from today. But it will be back in stock on the 27th, so mark your calendar if you're thinking about ordering this Thinlit set!
I hope you have an absolutely wonderful Valentine's Day today, and that you've enjoyed making cards and gifts using Stampin' Up! products this Valentine's season as much as I have. But now it's on to catch up with my Birthday Card stash before I start in on Easter fun! The fun just doesn't stop in my Craft Room!
Welcome once again to my favorite monthly blog hop, the Color Fusers Blog Hop, in which we are given 4 or 5 colors and challenged to use at least 3 of them in our blog post for the day. This month's color challenge is to use:
The list of all this month's blogs is at the end of this post. I hope you will visit them all because there are some fab projects! Now on to my project for this post.
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
What a great color combo – and Stampin' Up! itself came up with it first in the fun Cupcakes & Carousels Designer Series Paper Stack. All four colors are in that set of papers. So I figured it was a no brainer to use that set of papers to make a card (what I make the most of these days) focusing on 3 of the 4 colors. So I did make a card that went pretty quickly, and poof! I was done!
But wait. There are some really creative folks in this blog hop, so that simple card (which I'll introduce in a blog post after Valentine's Day) seemed like it was just a bit too easy for this crowd of hoppers. What I did was to think about this a little bit, look through the Stampin' Up! 2017 Occasions Catalog, think some more – and, voilá! I decided on a bit more ambitious of a project!
I stuck with the Carousle & Cupcakes Designer Series Paper, but moved around a bit in the Occasions Catalog and found the Balloon Adventures Bundle to make this paper a lot more interesting! Not only that, but it turns out that one of my favorite Sisters-in-Law (they're all favorites!), who is also in my Stampin' Up! downline, had a birthday this past weekend, and I was SOOOO excited to have a fun card to make for her!
This first step that I took in making this card was to create the inside of the card. I'd not yet used the framelits from this Bundle to make a card, but I did have a bit of experience with the concept. Nonetheless, I chose to watch the YouTube Video that Stampin' Up! produced to introduce this. I've included a link to this video at the end of this post. Oh, and how did I know there was a video for this? When you look at a Stampin' Up! catalog, occasionally you'll come across this symbol. When you see this, you know that Stampin' Up! has a video at youtube.com/stampinup.
To keep my theme going for this card, I did a few things that weren't in the video. First of all, I used papers from the Designer Series Paper Stack both for the background and the foreground fo the left and right balloon on the inside. I created the background by punching papers using the Balloon Bouquet Punch and the top layers using Thinlits. I also used Designer Series Paper for the center balloon, even though it had to be folded to make the pop-up style of the card. I folded this balloon before I adhered it to the already-folded pop-up element.
I also managed not to stamp the "let's celebrate" sentiment onto the center piece of the pop-up element before I did all the scoring and folding required (won't do that next time!). So I had to stamp onto another piece of Whisper White Cardstock, then fold the piece I cut out from the stamped image and adhere it to the already-folded banner shape. The final elements inside this card are the "gift packages" on either side. The tops and bows are made with the Thinlit set, and I rounded the bottom corners using the Project Life Corner Punch.
I got away from the Balloon Adventures Bundle a bit with the central stamped image on the front of the card. There was a lot of trial and error here (errors?) before I realized that I wasn't going to be able to accomplish what I wanted with the Thinlit dies that were in the bundle. So I went looking for something else with the same kind of shape, and settled on the Lots of Labels Framelits for the sentiment for the card front. Even then, I couldn't find the "perfect" fit (perfect being what I wanted, darn it!), so I ended up die-cutting both the image in the center of the Designer Series Paper/Early Espresso layer as well as the inserted image using the same die. I trimmed the straight sides of the Early Espresso piece a bit, then cut it in half and reduced the size from top to bottom before taping the pieces together with transparent tape at the back. Then I stamped the sentiment onto the piece of Designer Series Paper before trimming it to fit on the Early Espresso layer.
I cut the holes in both ends of the Espresso layer using the little circle die from the Tags and Labels Framelits. Finally, I made a both on both ends, one with Calyso Coral Thick Bakers Twine and the other with Bermuda Bay Thick Bakers Twine. Then I adhered this layer to the card front using Stampin' Dimensionals. Done! And it's already in Maryland by now (I can only hope!)
Here's the video from Stampin' Up! that provides some great ideas for using the Balloon Adventures Bundle!
Here is the list of bloggers on the hop this month:
- Patty Bennett
- Jason Loucks
- Heather Osborne
- Nicole Tugrul
- Paola Phillips
- Jo Anne Hewins
- Melissa Kerman
- Robin Messenheimer – You are here!
- Pat Ertman
- Debbie Henderson
And here are the products that I featured in my project for today!
It's time for another edition of the Stampin' Up! Only Challenge, and I think this is always my favorite of the whole year. It's time to get all those Valentine's Day Cards done, and that's the challenge!
I have been working like crazy to get lots of Valentine's Cards done this year because I think that the Sealed with Love Stamp Set and the Sending Love Designer Series Paper (DSP) Stack in the 2017 Stampin' Up! Occasions Catalog is one of the best combinations I've seen in a long time!
Add to that paper and stamp set combo the wonderful shapes from the Love Notes Framelits Dies, and you have just about everything you need for great Valentine's Cards (well, except for the Real Red Ink and Whisper White Cardstock, which you probably already have in your stash)!
For today's card, I also added a gorgeous stamp (IMHO) from the FREE Sale-a-bration Delicate Details Stamp Set. That's the lace stamp across the card, under the hearts. I used the small heart Framelit from the Framelits Set to cut hearts from scraps of paper from the Sending Love DSP Stack.
Oh, and I love how the teeny white hearts are spaced on the sheet of the DSP that I used for the mat for the stamped layer of this card. They are spaced perfectly to be cut to sizes that typically appear as layers on a 4-1/4" x 5-1/2" card base (this fits into an A2 or "medium" size envelope).
My final touch on this card was a sprinkling of Pearl Basic Jewels.
If you are a reader of CardMaker Magazine, you just might recognize this layout. Yes, it's a CASE (Copy And Share with Everyone) from a card in their article about simple Valentine's Day Cards using small hearts. I've created a couple of other cards using these layouts, and am sharing them with you this month also. It's just a great magazine for ideas even though they use Stampin' Up! products a bit too infrequently for my taste. Nonetheless, I can usually find Stampin' Up! products to make with their design ideas!
Speaking of products, here are the products that I featured in today's project. Click on any of the pictures to go to my Stampin' Up! Store to order any of them. Or just give me a call, and I can help you place the order if you'd prefer!
DID YOU NOTICE!? Buy the Sealed With Love Bundle and the Sending Love Designer Series Paper – and get the Delicate Details Stamp Set FOR FREE!
Once again it's time for the Stampin' Up! Only Challenge, the biweekly challenge for all lovers and users of Stampin' Up! paper crafting products. The new challenge is "Embossing of All Kinds." There are so many ways of embossing that we're really looking forward to seeing what people come up with for their challenge entries.
But for today, I'm going to share with you my own Design Team entry for the challenge.
For this project, I'm featuring two kinds of embossing. The first is on the heart in the middle of the project, cut with one of the hearts from the Sweet & Sassy Framelits set, using Watermelon Wonder Cardstock. I heat embossed the sentiment from the Sealed with Love Stamp Set (from the new Occasions Catalog) using Versamark Ink and White Stampin' Emboss Powder. I added a larger heart behind the stamped and embossed heart for a nice bit of matting.
The other kind of embossing is that which you can make using Stampin' Up!'s Textured Impression Embossing Folders. For this project, I used the Happy Hearts Textured Impressions Embossing Folder on both a piece of Blushing Bride Cardstock and a piece of Very Vanilla Cardstock. I twisted the Very Vanilla layer a bit so it showed up more under the Blushing Bride Layer. Wouldn't you know when I went to upload all the projects by the Stampin' Up! Only Design Team, the one right next to mine has this same kind of offsetting layers. Hmmm. Is that "great minds"?
I tied my project all together with a piece of the brand new Very Vanilla 1/4" Satin Ribbon, and then one of the larger pieces from the Rhinestone Basic Jewel set.
Now for a few side notes on "issues" I had with the heat embossing. First of all, I've always thought that the "white" embossing powder (not just Stampin' Up!'s, but others, too) looks more like a cream color than the white that's in the Whisper White Cardstock. So that's why I used Very Vanilla cardstock and ribbon as accents in this card. On the other hand, my container of White Stampin' Emboss Powder may be just a tad too old to be as nice as I'd want it. So it goes on my next Stampin' Up! order.
The next issue was that I really wanted the accents to be gold. But no matter what I did, I found that the gold embossing didn't shine like I wanted it to. So my first thought was that the gold embossing powder was too old. But then I realized that my Versamark Pad might not be juicy enough. First subproblem: my Versamark Reinker is a bit too much on the thick side. Can you say, "old"? But, while the gold embossing was definitely better with more Versamark ink, it still wasn't up to what I consider par. So out came the White Stampin' Emboss Powder, which I covered in the previous paragraph.
Let's see, that's 1, 2, 3, 4 products to add to my next Stampin' Up! order. Oh, and I may just have to add that Real Red and Emerald Envy embossing powder that I never ordered from the 2016 Holiday catalog. Oh it will be a fun week next week when that box hits my doorstep!
Here are the products I used in this project. Don't forget that, until the end of March, for every $50 you spend you get to pick a FREE PRODUCT from the Sale-a-bration Catalog! Oooh, that means I'll be getting some of that fun stuff, too!
Welcome to the very first project of the year made for one of the Stampin' Up! Only Challenges! Of course the theme revolves around the "new stuff" that Stampin' Up! has coming out in its newest catalogs tomorrow – January 4, 2017! That's when the Stampin' Up! 2017 Occasions Catalog and the Stampin' Up! 2017 Sale-a-bration Catalog go live! My project for this challenge – and for you today – includes my current most favorite product in the new Occasions Catalog, the Window Box Thinlit Die set.
This Thinlits set is SOOOO much fun to use, and I've already made several of the boxes using different cardstock, papers and embellishments. For today's post, I chose one made with Whisper White Thick Cardstock and with a variety of Mint Macaron-colored products. Those that you can see from this photo are the Mint Macaron 3/8" Sheer Linen Ribbon, a Mint Macaron colored print paper from the Blooms and Bliss Designer Series Paper set adhered under the decorative die on the top;, and another Mint colored sheet from the new Succulent Garden Designer Series Paper set, matted with some Mint Macaron Cardstock.
On this side, you can see one of the square Thinlits from the Window Box set that can be used on the side of the box. I mounted this on a layer of Mint Macaron print, then created a square frame for it using Stampin' Up!'s Layering Squares Framelits Dies and Stitched Shapes Framelits Dies. I like the way that there's a bit of a textured feature between the cutting lines on this frame.
In this straight-on view of the box top, you can better see how pretty the decorative die is with the paper behind it. And there's a bit more Mint Macaron as I used Mint Macaron Classic Ink to stamp the sentiment with a stamp from the Teeny Tiny Wishes Stamp Set that's punched with the Classic Label Die.
I found this box really easy to make. It does take a bit more time than making a greeting card, but the end product is so worth it! The best part of this project is that the top opens and closes, and LOTS of candy can fit inside! Or jewelry? Hmmm, that's what I'd like to see in it! But what made this box so easy to make was that I took the time to view the video that Stampin' Up! has made with hints about how to put the box together and how to use the various parts of this set. Here's the video – well worth your time if you're planning on purchasing this set!
Tomorrow – the day that the Occasions and Sale-a-bration Catalogs go live – I'll have a list of all the products that I've used in my blog post projects the last few days. Meanwhile, if you have any questions or comments, be sure to post them in the comment section below!
And welcome to the very first Color Fusers Blog Hop for 2017! This month we have four colors from which we had to choose at least 3 for creating our project. I really wanted to use all 4, but, with all the holiday busy-ness going on, I didn't have much crafting time, and so just settled for 3.
The colors I picked for my project were Tangerine Tango, Crushed Curry, and Very Vanilla. You may recognize the Stylish Stems Framelits Dies from yesterday's project. If I didn't think you'd like it better if I showed off lots of different products in these blog posts, you might just end up seeing this Framelits set all week for the whole month of January! But I won't do that – I'll branch out a bit. That's not a problem at all with all of the fabulous products in the upcoming Stampin' Up! 2017 Occasions and Sale-a-bration Catalogs!
The framelits set not only has the dies that cut negative shapes into cardstock, it also has the outlines for those negative image dies. I promise I will show some of that over the next 5 months of the Occasions Catalog. But I also used the outline dies for the cardstock that I put behind the negative images to "color them in." That saved me a bunch of the Tangerine Tango Cardstock that's the main color behind the two flowers. To bring in the Crushed Curry color, I punched some Crushed Curry Cardstock using the Blossom Punch and adhered those punched flowers behind the die-cut flowers using Tombow Multipurpose Liquid Glue. That was easier that trying to figure out exactly where to place them by adhering them to the larger Tangerine Tango die-cut outline images, which I adhered behind the flowers simply by using standard transparent tape.
I actually thought about just layering the Very Vanilla top layer over a layer of Tangerine Tango Cardstock. But I really wanted to emphasize the Crushed Curry color a bit more, so made that the layer that mats the top layer. It's really going to be fun seeing what I can do with this set of framelits!
Finally, I added a bow using the Very Vanilla 1/4" Satin Ribbon that will be in the Occasions Catalog, and stamped the sentiment from the already-current Greatest Greeting Stamp Set.
Fun project! As I said yesterday, I'll post Wednesday with the products for the projects for yesterday, today and tomorrow, when you'll be able to order all the new "stuff" I'm using now. I'm sure you'll love it all!
And now I hope you'll continue on this blog hop by checking out Pat Ertman's project which features other new Occasions Catalog products – that I'll be buying this month for sure! Here are those Stampin' Up! demonstrators who are participating in this month's hop:
• Robin Messenheimer – You're Here!
When I finished today's project for the new Stampin' Up! Only Challenge, I told my husband that I thought maybe this project was a bit over the top for one of my usual blog post subjects. You see, I usually try to feature cards that can fit in a standard A2-sized envelope (the Stampin' Up! Mediium Envelope) and that don't require extra postage. I missed today's project on both counts! But, hey, I met the criteria for the SUO Challenge!
This project all started when we were out on a trip into town this afternoon, and I knew I had to make this card as soon as I got home so that I could include it in the SUO Challenge Blog Post. The challenge this time is to feature circles, ovals or squares as elements on our cards or other project. My husband was driving and I was contemplating what I wanted to do with my project. Aha! I would make a New Year's Card, stamping numerals and cutting them out with ovals. Yay! I had my card.
The glitch in this thinking was that the only numeral stamps I have in my stash are those in the Number of Years Stamp Set. Rats – they're HUGE (well, larger than I'd pictured). Nonetheless, I pressed on with my idea, stamped the numerals and tried a LOT of different ways to organize them. They were just not going to fit on a standard A2-sized card. Oh, what the heck, said I to myself. Just make a big card. So I folded a sheet of cardstock in half, and off I went. The result is that this card, rather than being an A2-sized card is an A-9 sized card, which is a lot larger that my standard card.
Then, of course, I had to start layering. What's a Robin's Craft Room card without layering. It's what I do, after all! First I layered the numerals. Each was stamped in Night of Navy Classic Ink on Very Vanilla Cardstock/ cut with one of the Layering Ovals Framelits; mounted on one of the scalloped ovals from the framelits set, using Night of Navy Cardstock; and finally mounted on an oval cut with one of the Stitched Ovals Framelits using Copper Foil. Already we had some weight in this card!
The layers on the front of the card include a layer from the Petals and Paisleys Specialty Designer Series Paper set (from the Stampin' Up! 2016 Holiday Catalog) and a layer of Copper Foil (also from the Holiday Catalog, and continuing on into another catalog).
This is an Easel Fold Card, so there's definitely an extra layer on the front of the card. Then, to make sure that the whole card looks wonderful when it's positioned in the Easel position, there have to be colorful layers on the inside of the card, too. Add a small 2017 calendar pad and another stamped image – the "Happy New Year" stamp from Teeny Tiny Wishes Stamp Set and a banner from the Number of Years Stamp Set – cut out using the banner die from the Large Numbers Framelits Die set, and there's the rest of the weight. There is a bit of Copper Wire on the inside layer, but that stuff doesn't weigh enough to make a difference no matter how much I used – and I used a bunch!
So there's my BIG card – all 2.3 ounces of it with its envelope, bringing my postage cost up to $1.36 from whatever a Forever stamp costs these days. But I already know the special person who will get this in the mail, and she's definitely worth it!
Here are the products I feature in today's card. If you're interested in any of the products from the Stampin' Up! Holiday Catalog, check with me first so I can find out if they're still available. We're getting close to the end of the catalog sales period, and things start to sell out fast this time of the catalog cycle!
Earlier this week, I posted about a card that I'd made for the biweekly Stampin' Up! Only Challenge. I mentioned that I'd made two cards, and played Eeenie-Meenie-Miny-Moe to pick which one to post with the Design Team photos for this challenge. Today I'm sharing the other card!
This card uses the same Wondrous Wreath Thinlits set, the same Holly Textured Impressions Embossing Folder, and the same colors – Real Red and Very Vanilla. It's just that I used different shapes for this card. Oh, and I used one of the circle shapes from the Stitched Shapes Framelits set.
Besides adding a bow to the top of the ornament – this time made from the Real Red 3/8" Stitched Satin Ribbon – I also added some Rhinestone Basic Jewels around the center of the round ornament. They sparkle in real life a bit more than they sparkle under the lens of a camera!
So I have 2 more Christmas cards to add to my stash. I now have 70 hand made cards to send out – and a bunch more than I'll be making as part of classes or challenges this week. Oooh, I may need to buy more stamps!!! At least I haven't made too many that require extra postage – but I have some of those Butterfly Stamps ready and waiting for those cards to have notes written in them! Next week is some R&R time for my husband and me at a local Hawaiian vacation spot. The cards will go along and I'll have them ready to drop off at the post office on the way home!
Here are the products I featured in today's project. Don't forget to order yours from my very own Stampin' Up! store!
Here we are with the second Stampin' Up! Only Challenge for this Winter Holiday Season. Last time the challenge theme was Holiday Cuteness. This time we're going in another direction, towards Holiday Elegance. So I couldn't dig out the Cookie Cutter cuties or the various snow people, foxes and bears, oh my! No, I had to get something a bit fancier out onto my work table.
I bought the Delicate Ornaments Thinlits set a few weeks back, and immediately put it away with some other Christmas dies that I wasn't quite ready to use this year (too much else to do to take the time?). But with this challenge, it seemed the perfect set to break out and finally make a card with it. Actually, I made TWO cards with the set, and had to choose between the two cards once I got them both done. It came down to "eeny-meeny-miny-moe." This one won. But the other one has its merits, too, so I'll share it with you in a couple of days.
I really wanted a Real Red and Very Vanilla card, and I also wanted some texture to the card. That's why I broke out another set I've not yet used this season, the Wondrous Wreath Thinlits dies. With the two words – Noel and Joy – that are more on the elegant side, I thought they'd go perfectly with the theme. And the texturizing with the Holly Textured Impressions Embossing Folder I think made the perfect background for this whole set.
I recently read a tip for applying adhesives to these delicate dies that has made all the difference in how I approach them. To begin, I really like the Tombow Liquid Glue that Stampin' Up! sells. I find it really sets up as a good adhesive, especially in the humid tropical rain forest environment in which I live. But it can be messy and frequently squishes out from the edge of the die cuts. Anyway, what I read is to use the teensy brushes that some people use to apply false eyelashes. So I bought some, and they're perfect for doing this kind of glue application. I just put a couple of dots of liquid glue on various parts of the die cut cardstock and then use the teensy brush to spread it around. No mess on my fingers and no extra glue squishing out to mess up the background.
With everything glued on just like I wanted it, I tied the project together with some of the yummy Very Vanilla 3/8" Stitched Satin Ribbon. Love that stuff!
I may have mentioned before that I am the person responsible for making sure that all members of one of my service clubs gets a birthday card in the mail. Of course, any birthday card that I send is handmade! In order to make this less of a chore and more of a creative challenge, I choose to make two or three months' worth of cards all at once. That means that the cards have to be fairly easy to mass produce. Today I thought I'd share with you my latest card in this program. Besides that, the current SUO Challenge is "All Kinds of Celebrations," and making these cards to celebrate birthdays certainly fills that bill!
This is one of two slightly different designs that I chose for birthdays from the beginning of November through the first week of January. For this set of birthdays, there are 7 women and 7 men to whom I need to send cards. The slight difference is that, for the women's cards I feature a bow at the top of the card and for the men's cards, I simply tie a knot to embellish the ribbon.
Now here's how I make this as quick and easy as possible:
To begin, I put all the card fronts together first, leaving the cutting and folding of the card bases and adhering the card fronts to them, until the last step. Then I got all of the pieces of the card fronts cut and lined up. My work area did not look like the work area in this photo as, at any one time, I had just one of the elements that make up the card front out in front of me. If you're interested in this process at a more detailed level, I plan to do the last of my Christmas Cards using this pattern, but with different papers, inks and embellishments. I need about a dozen more cards, and it's getting close to time to start addressing envelopes and writing notes! AND I'll take photos of each step as I go along.
Does this sound like a tutorial? Well, it is! And it will be FREE to those who are on my newsletter mailing list, which includes those who signed up for the 12 Weeks of Christmas Mailing List. I hope to be mailing out my newsletter by the end of this week – a bit late as, once again, my health hasn't been the best which has slowed things down in my craft room. BUT I'm much better now and ready to take on the week!
Even though I have the products listed in the photos, above, I'd still like to share product links that will take you to my Stampin' Up! store in case you'd like to buy any of them. Once you've clicked any of the links, you can add any of the other products directly onto your order form. One of you mentioned that you'd like to have the product number in this presentation to help with the ordering. So, beginning this week, I'm including that in the product description below. Do let me know if you have any requests that would make your ordering easier!