Tuesday, 29 April 2014

Baby Cards!

No, not congratulatory notes for newborns. It's the missives themselves that are miniature! I found some cute little 3" x 3" blank cards in The Range the other day and couldn't resist them. I like making things on a miniature scale. I also wanted to try out some new stamps I got recently, from Art Journey and Stampinback, so I decided to see if they and the cards would work together.

The cards are so small that they would be swamped by lots of embellishments. Instead, I opted for one-layer designs. Having first masked a border around each card, I sponged the backgrounds with pigment inks and then, with the masks still in place, stamped over with various meadow/grasses type stamps (mostly by Inkylicious apart from one which I've had for years which has no ID, though several companies now produce the same image in varying sizes).

Next I removed the masks and stamped the main foreground images. The bottom ones in the above picture are by Stampinback, the top ones are by Art Journey. Had to have a butterfly in there somewhere (Justrite), and finished the cards with sentiments by Personal Impressions.

 Here are a couple of them close up.

Having finished the baby cards I thought I would make a larger version. Same details, except that the sentiment is by Hobby Art.

 And here is the big one and a baby one! Cute or what?!

Wednesday, 9 April 2014

A Butterfly Stepper Card

Following my win on the Butterfly Challenge, I was thrilled to be invited by Mrs A to make something for a guest DT slot. So here it is. The theme for the challenge is to use a charm on your project (along with a butterfly, of course!). I haven't made many stepper cards before, and the design for this one evolved by trial and error!

Having got the base sorted, I covered it with papers by Prima (Fairy Belle collection) and then simply added various elements to complete the design. The circle & butterfly circle were cut with Nestability dies, the larger butterfly dies are by Cheery Lynn, and the tiny one is a Dovecraft punch. Leaf punch by Leone Em, flowers by Prima. The sentiment was a freebie from Simple Cards & Papercraft magazine. I added some glitter glue to the butterflies, and brads to the flower centres. The little charm says "believe". I've had it in my stash for years, just waiting for the right project to add it to!

I really enjoyed making this project, so thanks, Mrs A for letting me be a guest DT for you!

Sunday, 6 April 2014

Dies and Punches at Stamping Sensations

For our April Challenge at Stamping Sensations we would like you to show us what you can do with your

***** DIES AND PUNCHES *****

Your project can be anything you like as long as it uses punched and/or diecut elements. And some stamping, of course!

Our fab sponsor this month is once again PDA Card & Craft, who have very generously donated a whopping £40 voucher to be spent either online or in their shop in Langley Mill, which is on the Notts/Derbyshire border.

PDA are well known for their quality cardstock, which they supply in just about every shade and type you could possibly want, but they also sell a huge variety of craft materials, so the winner of this fantastic prize will be spoilt for choice!

Anyway, on to my project. I've called it "Spring Triptych", and have used both dies and punches.

I began by cutting an A4 sheet of card into three equal pieces and trimming one end of each with the Britannia Dies Small Lattice Edge. While looking through my patterned paper stash, I came across some that I've had for so long I'd forgotten all about it! If I remember correctly it came from Lakeland, when they had a craft section, in a pack with some glittered butterfly and flower stickers. I thought it would be perfect for a Spring project, with its tulips and butterflies, and pretty Spring colours. I traced around the edge of the lattice die to hand cut the paper to fit the top of each panel. (The die only cuts the outer edge.) I didn't want to cover up the paper too much, so I just added some diecut shapes (Spellbinders Labels 4) and some tiny punched butterflies. On the two outer panels I stamped a tulip (Stampin' Up)  and the centre one has some punched flowers and leaves and a sentiment (Inkylicious).

Once each panel was complete, I inserted some eyelets and joined the panels together with narrow ribbon. A spot of glitter glue on the punched butterflies and flower centres provided the finishing touch.

A little aside here! When the trend for diecutting first started, I wasn't interested. I certainly didn't intend to spend a lot of money on something that I might use once or twice and then stick in a cupboard, never again to see the light of day. At the time, I was running a card making class, and some of the members had bought Cuttlebugs. They were soon raving about them, and wanting to use them in the classes. I resisted for a while, but then I discovered Spellbinders dies and was impressed by the effects you could get with them. I gave in and got a 'bug of my own. And promptly fell in love with it! Of course, since then the variety of types and styles of dies has just grown and grown, not to mention that of machines, both manual and electronic. I remain faithful to my 'bug, though. I don't feel any need for larger dies, or electronic cutting. I can do everything I want to with the Cuttlebug, and a great many of my projects contain at least one element produced by it. It has never let me down. I can't see why on earth I would want to trade it in for a smarter model .....

My creative teamies have a gorgeously eclectic selection of samples for you over on the Challenge Blog, so do go over and be inspired. Last month's Pink theme was very popular, and I reckon this one is going to be equally so. I'm really looking forward to seeing lots of entries, so dig out those dies and punches and get cracking! Thanks for looking.

PS. Just realised this also fits the Butterfly Challenge (No. 4), so I'm going to enter it there.

Friday, 4 April 2014

Spring Butterflies

 It's a Spring theme for the Butterfly Challenge No. 4, so Mrs. A would like to see yellow on our projects. Had to think about this one for a while, as yellow is not a colour I use very often. However, though I don't like bright acid yellows, I do love the spring flowers, such as daffodils and tulips, and I think that the more muted shades of yellow, coupled with fresh spring green, can be very pretty.

I decided to use a technique which I first saw done by Julie Hickey in her book "Flower Power Papercrafts". Julie used punched flowers for her card, but I have used my favourite butterfly dies (by Cheery Lynn) to make the openwork panel. A simple sentiment (Hero Arts) was all that was needed to complete the card.

Here's a closer look at the butterfly panel.

And another view of the card.

The daffodils are all out here now, both in our garden and along the bank across the road from our house. Not much sun in evidence lately though, so the cheery daffs are doing a sterling job of brightening up the view!

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