Thursday, August 30, 2012

Overstamped Butterfly Card

Inspired by a card done by Heather Tedford, I chose butterflies to try the overstamping technique then added some embossing for contrast.

The background was done by sponging a light shade of blue, then I stamped the butterflies in two colors but you can barely see the lighter blue ones in the photo. White embossing powder added shine to the leaves.

It's a rare occasion that I make a single card from a design, but this is going to be a one of a kind.  I don't have graduated shades of the same colors to accomplish what I wanted and will have to wait until my next trip to the LSS to pick up some ink pads.

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

30 Minute Halloween Card

How super simple can a card get?  Just stamp a Halloween sentiment on a narrow strip of cardstock then run it through an embossing folder,  make some black dots with a Pearl Pen beside the sentiment, stamp a few sets of scary eyes on the card front and add a black border punch strip and you're done. 

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Timeless Card

Inspired by a stamped image of a grandfather clock with a smiling face, I used French Manor to cut my clock shape.

Placing a rectangle the size of an A2 card front onto the mat in Design Studio, I stretched and resized the clock to fit the area that I wanted to use on my card.  I inked the edges and adhered the clock cutout onto some white cardstock then stamped the face with a Peachy Keen stamp and colored it with a Promarker.

A Stampin' Up border punch was used for the blue border; the sentiment was computer generated.

Vintage Butterfly Collage Card

This is a hodge-podge of  images from numerous sets of stamps.

The large background image was stamped with Memento ink and then I used sponge daubers with four colors of Momento ink to shade it.   Then I tore the edges and added some stamped postmarks and washi tape accents.  The polka dot background paper is from BoBunny.

Monday, August 27, 2012

3 Butterflies Card

I used a Sizzix die and cut the butterflies from Mica paper for this one.

Sunday, August 26, 2012

Three Squares Butterfly Card

I saw this card on Pinterest and tracked it back to a blogger named Biggan.  Her blog is in a foreign language and I was unable to find her real name.  If you'd like to visit, here's a link:   Three Squares Card.

The butterfly within the square was cut using George and Elegant Edges.  Then I cut just the butterfly from the orange patterned paper.  The sentiment is from Close to My Heart, stamped with Memento Tangelo ink.

I embossed a border on the card front using my Scor-Pal.

Cherries Card

This simple to assemble card was seen at Krista's Stamp Spot.   Krista is a Stampin' Up demonstrator so she used different elements than I used, but the card is basically the same.

The cherries on my card were cut from Lyrical Letters on white cardstock and then colored with Promarkers.  This is much faster than doing three separate cuts: red for the cherries, brown for the stems and green for the leaf.

The sentiment is a Close to My Heart stamp.  I punched it with an 1 1/8" circle punch and matted it onto an  1 1/4" circle.  The red flowers were done with a Stampin' Up Bitty Punch.  The scalloped border was also done with a Stampin' Up punch.  I added some doodles with a Stampin' Up marker and white gel pen.

Facebook Challenge Card

This card is for the Old Cricut Community challenge on Facebook.  I used my Artiste cartridge and stamps for the banner.

My Personal Challege

Almost all of the cards I make are copied or based on ones online or in publications.  Recently, I've been participating in some card challenges and have been learning how to better combine colors. But, these challenges have a sketch to use and I wanted to really test myself today.

I gave myself a challenge today to do a card from an image in a Cricut handbook that I did not choose.

The cartridges that I own are on a numbered list in an Excel spreadsheet.  There are 75 cartridges on the list.  I asked my husband to choose a number from 1 to 75 and the cartridge with that number was the one I'd use.  Then I looked at the handbook for the cartridge to see how many pages it contained and asked him to choose a number within that range.  By this time he was totally confused! LOL!

The cartridge was Paisley and page number 65.  That silly old paisley has 7 or 8 layers, depending on how you want to cut it. When I realized that's the image he'd picked, I almost scrapped my whole idea and was going to find an easier image to cut.  But, I persevered!

Choosing colors is a real challenge for me.  I can pick  three or four, but to come up with colors to coordinate for FIVE layers?  It gave me a headache just thinking about it!  I used a fantastic website,  Design Seeds.  This site is a lifesaver for color challenged folks like me!   There are hundreds of color combinations with gorgeous photographs that contain all the colors on there so that's how I came up with the ones I used for this design.

For lack of better names, I'll call the colors teal, peach, rust, purple and olive.  Who would have ever thought you could put them together on the same design?

This was definitely a challenge for me! Not only was picking colors difficult, but it's been a long  time since I've used all the features in Design Studio.  Just figuring out all the layers that I needed to cut probably took me at least 30 minutes!

Once it was assembled, it looked too plain so I used a Signo gel pen to add the doodles.  This reminds me of a Pennsylvania Dutch design.

Now, I've satisfied my need for a challenge!  And, I'm off to find another card inspiration---online!

Saturday, August 25, 2012

Vintage Butterfly Card

The butterflies are clip art images that I printed in different sizes and cut out by hand.  They're pop dotted onto the printed Graphic 45 paper that's been stained with Tim Holtz Distress Ink.

 I like the way the bright blue stands out from the vintage style background colors.

I used a brown Promarker to color the paper doily then placed half of it underneath the printed paper.  The darker brown paper is from Paper Studio..

Three Flowers Card

The flowers were cut and sized with Design Studio from 3 Birds on Parade.

Friday, August 24, 2012

30 Minute Card for Halloween

It's such a cute and fast Halloween card since all you need is some punches.  The eyes are a Stampin Up oval and two smaller circles.  I printed the sentiment and used a tag corner punch on the orange paper.  I added some dots on the black background and orange mat with a Sharpie marker and used a white gel pen for the dots in the corners.

I saw this card on Pinterest and tracked it back to  Holly at Ink Paper Stamps..

Thursday, August 23, 2012

S.W.A.K. Card

There are three brand new Cricut cartridges sitting on my work table just waiting to be used and I wind up with card ideas using cartridges I've owned for over two years! LOL!

The lips are from Indie Art, cut from glossy red paper; the letters are from Pooh Font, cut from lime green glitter paper.

A hint for cutting the glitter paper on your Cricut is to turn the paper upside down and flip your letters using Design Studio. { I have no clue if you can flip letters using just the keypad on a Cricut.  Everything, and I mean everything, that I cut with my Expression is done with Design Studio.}   That way the tip of the blade is cutting through the paper backing and not the hard glitter.  When you remove your letters and turn them over, they'll be correctly oriented to adhere.

I tried just putting the letters "S W A K" without the periods and it didn't look right to me.  So, the periods were cut using George and Design Studio.  I put a row of 1" circles onto my mat and then using the handles on the box in Design Studio, I just shrunk them down to the size I needed.  They're a lot like trying to do the eyes from a Disney character cutout---tiny and hard to hang on to!

 Because of the angle of the light, the papers look matte finish.
Here you can see the glitter and the gloss of the red as well as the black striped Stampin' Up background paper.

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Dude! Card

A denim background paper suits this cute cowboy boot from the Yee-haw cartridge.

The boot is cut at 3 7/8" to fit onto the A2 sized card.

I added some pen stitching and colored the boot's heel and sole with a Stampin' Up marker.
The sentiment was computer generated.

Artiste and Art Philosophy Card

Yesterday my Artiste cartridge arrived and this afternoon is the first chance I've had to check it out.

Start to finish, I spent about three hours making six of these cards!  It takes me too long to decide what image to use, get it sized in Design Studio and pick papers.

This card has elements from both CTMH Artiste and Art Philosophy.  The key is from Art Philosophy and the key hole is from Artiste.  I had to cut them out of a couple of different colors of paper before deciding that the metallic gold on top of the olive green looked best on the background paper.

The sentiment was printed in Hallmark card software.  Then I cut the hearts from the Artiste cartridge and used blue painters tape to temporarily attach them onto a sheet of printer paper and print the words.

There's a little inking on the light green heart and around the outside edge of the card.

 The background paper is from a K & Company 12 x 12 stack.  It's another sheet with over sized designs so I cut it down to use for my A2 cards.

With so many great images on the Artiste cartridge, I really hope I can come up with a more elaborate card design than this!

Monday, August 20, 2012

30 Minute Card with Embossing

This card was inspired by one done by a Stampin' Up demonstrator.  I used kraft cardstock for the base and a torn piece of embossed white card stock for the trim across the top.  Some were done with white embossing powder and some with gold. 

 I had to put the gold embossed card at an angle so the shine was visible on the images.
 This is embossed with gold embossing powder but it appears brown because of the angle of the light.
The white ones were done first.  Then I decided to try the gold powder.  I believe I prefer the gold.

It took me less than 30 minutes to complete eight of these to add to my Operation Write Home box.

30 Minute Card

It's been a while since I've posted a super simple 30 Minute Card.  My priority mail box is about 2/3rd's full so I needed to get ramped up and make some quick cards to fill it completely.

The sentiment is from Stampin' Up and the butterfly was cut from CTMH Art Philosophy cartridge.  I added some inking to the edges of the sentiment mat and the butterfly.

Sunday, August 19, 2012

Ampersand Card

The ampersand was cut using Design Studio and the Carousel cartridge.  I used the hide contour feature to simplify the cut out shape.

Easy Masculine Card

Inspired by a leaflet from Michael's, I used some Graphic 45 paper for the background and Hampton Art Bird Cages stamps.  The images were stamped with Memento Rich Cocoa ink.  The ovals were cut to size using Design Studio and the George cartridge on my Expression.

Halloween Cards

The paper and stamps used on these were found at Signed, Sealed and Delivered in Rogers, Arkansas.  If you're ever in the area, check them out!

The bottle image was stamped onto purple cardstock. The label onto olive green.
A Cuttlebug die was used for the orange scroll pieces.

Monday, August 13, 2012

Telephone Card

Clip art is a great alternative to buying embellishments or stamps for images.  You can find just about anything you need using Google Image search and resize it to fit your project. 

Over the past four years I've accumulated a large supply of stamps, punches and Cricut cartridges to use.  It's becoming more difficult for me to locate stamps I need for a particular image, so I've been using a lot of free clip art for my cards.

Both the old fashioned phone and the banner are free clip art images.  I printed the phone out twice so that I could cut the receiver portion out and pop dot it onto the phone base for dimension.  The banner was imported into Hallmark card making software, resized to fit an A2 card and the sentiment was added.

 The sentiment was printed onto blue paper and cut out by hand and pop dotted onto the card front.
The geometric pattern on this cardstock reminded me of the 60's so I thought it went well with the old style phone image.

Sunday, August 12, 2012

Sylvester the Cat Card

When I saw this card by Ellen Kemper at Blinkin', Thinkin' & Inkin' I fell in love with the cat face.  Immediately, it made me think of the cartoon character, Sylvester the cat.  If you enjoy making characters using punched shapes, you should definitely check out her blog!

For an A2 sized card I cut one each of:

5 1/2 x 4 1/4 pink cardstock
5 1/4 x 4 black cardstock
2 1/2 x 4 1/4 white cardstock
2 1/4 x 4 pink cardstock
2 1/2 square of pink cardstock
2 3/8 square of black cardstock

The white eyes and pink nose were cut using the George cartridge and Design Studio.  I placed a 2 3/8" square on the mat in DS and sized the heart and oval to the size I wanted.

Using my Crop-o-dile, I punched the holes in the white heart to form the eye opening and then snipped off the tip of the heart.  The cat's whiskers were done with a white Signo gel pen.  The pink and black tiger striped ribbon is from Ribbons and Bows, Oh, My!

Garden Season is Officially Over

Oklahoma has rough winters and I feel trapped inside the hourse.  So every spring I get all enthusiastic about setting out flowers and plants in our back yard.  Guess you could say in this respect that I'm a hopeless optimist! 

The past four years have been the absolute worst for trying to grow anything outdoors.  We've either  had so much rain in the spring and intermittent late freezes that the plants drown or get frostbitten or it goes from winter temperatures straight into the high 90's and no rainfall at all.

This morning I got up early to avoid the horrible 100° plus temperatures we're having and went out back to clean out our vegetable beds.  Everything is dead or dying because of the drought and having overnight temperatures that stay in the high 70's.  We've poured thousands of gallons of water onto the beds but the plants just can't survive and produce with these extremely hot days and nights.

It's not like we have a huge garden, just three raised beds for vegetables, but it made me sad to give up on it so early in the growing season.  I can certainly sympathize with Oklahoma farmers and ranchers who've watched their life's work and livelihood wither and die.  This is the second year of drought for our state and it's serious.

So, all the poor struggling plants have been pulled up and stacked onto a brush pile at our neighbor's.   Once we get a good amount of rain, my husband will help them when they decide to burn.   Our governor has issued a state wide burn ban so it may be the middle of winter before they can dispose of the stacked brush.

Our garden season is officially over for 2012.  The beds are cleaned out and tightly covered with black visqueen sheeting to kill any remaining roots and prevent any seeds from germinating.

Will I have another try at gardening in 2013?  Right now I'm determined to resist the temptation to spend so much time, effort and money for such poor results.  But, we'll see.  I'm positive that as I see the garden centers reopening next spring, all those pretty plants they have on display will completely erase the memories of the last few summers and I'll be right back out there with my tools and water hose!

Saturday, August 11, 2012

Milk and Cookies Card

The cow was cut using From My Kitchen.  It's cut at 2" and using Design Studio I flipped the image so the cow would be facing left.  *** I knew if I didn't flip the cow, that Okieladybug would make a smart remark about the cookies being behind the cow! ***  The black spots, hooves and nose were colored with Promarkers.

The tiny cookies were cut by hand from a sheet out of a Paper Studio stack named Sugar and Spice and pop dotted onto the grass.

Hallmark card making software was used to print the sentiment on the background.  I used a Divine Swirls embossing folder to give the grass some dimension and inked the edges.

*****After this was posted, I entered it into a challenge on a site called Bitten by the Bug 2.  Be sure to check out the blog!  Just scrolling through a couple of pages I've seen so many wonderful card ideas using your Cricut machine! *******

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Miss You Card

The images were stamped onto printed cardstock with Memento Rich Cocoa ink.  I punched out the clock faces and pop dotted them onto the card front for dimension.  I tore around the outside edge of the larger image and inked the torn edges.

The Tim Holtz washi tape was tinted with his line of distressing inks to blend in on the card front.

The inside sentiment says " Miss you all the time."

Monday, August 6, 2012

Happy Clock Card

The clock is from Slumber Party cartridge, cut at 3 1/2".  I added a Peachy Keen face stamp and chalked the blush onto the cheek.  The nose was colored with a Promarker.

I couldn't decide if the bow looked good or not so I posted it on a Facebook page and asked for opinions.  Overwhelmingly, the consensus was "no bow".  But, I still like them both!

Sunday, August 5, 2012

Reorganizing Handbooks and Overlays

Last year I removed my Cricut cartridge handbooks and overlays from their original boxes and made dividers with tabs for each cartridge and placed them into a Really Useful Box.  Shirley, aka Okieladybug, had shown me to do this.  The cartridge boxes take up too much room and this way you have your handbook and overlay in one place.

The dividers didn't prevent the handbooks from sliding down and winding up underneath the overlays, so today I've spent the afternoon making folders to store them in.

I cut a piece of 8 1/2 x 11" cardstock down to 9 1/2".   Then I scored it at 4 1/2" and 5" to create a gusset in the bottom of the folder.

Okieladybug and I found out that you can no longer buy self-adhesive file folder tabs.  This did not make me happy since I had so many folders to make.

I used Design Studio to weld two tabs together from the Store Front cartridge.  They're adhered to the folders with ATG tape.

Here's how one looks after it's folded and the tab has been attached.

The first box is completed. 

I never use my Expression without Design Studio, so I seldom refer to the handbooks and never use the overlays.  These boxes keep those things nice and neat and dust free.  The boxes fit perfectly into JetMax cubes.

My cartridges are also in a Really Useful Box.  Okieladybug made a cut. file for the little boxes for each individual cartridge.  They're in alphabetical order to make them easy to locate.

This is what the little boxes look like.  I'm sure the file is still available at Okieladybug's blog.

Friday, August 3, 2012

Christmas Card for Facebook Challenge

Stand and Salute cartridge was used to cut the star.  All the papers used except the song lyrics is metallic or glossy paper.  It's for a challenge on the Old Cricut Community Facebook page.

Denim Pockets Card

This is my card from stamp club last night.  Shirley, aka Okieladybug, and I missed the last two months because of the heat and things going on in our lives so we decided to just knuckle down and go last night even though it was around 110°---again!

Yesterday while getting my supplies together to take to stamp club, I came up with this idea for a card.  So that I'd actually get something done while at stamp club, I precut the pockets and printed the sentiment and took the other supplies with me.  Most of the time I get too busy talking and accomplish nothing, so taking a card kit assures I'll get at least one completed!

The pockets were cut using Design Studio and the Freshly Picked cartridge.  They're a detail for the overalls so I cut them with the real size dial set at about 4" and then used the hide contour feature to omit cutting the pieces I didn't want.

A white gel pen was used to do the stitching on the pockets.  I got busy talking--imagine that!-- and forgot to ink the edges on the pockets.  I took a prototype for reference and noticed this morning that those had been inked.

The mail in the pockets is clip art images that I sized in Hallmark card making software, then cut out by hand.  The sentiment was done in the same program and punched with a Stampin' Up word window punch.

The bandana print paper is from Paper Studio's Yee Haw stack and the background is a single sheet of Paper Studio denim printed paper.

It's not evident in the photo, but the bandana print has a yellow color rather than white in the paisley shapes so the card front is a pale yellow that matches.  The photo makes the card front appear to be white.

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Overnight Bread Recipe

Frugal Living blog is where I found the recipe for this bread. This link will take you to there.  The person that posted the recipe did some wonderful instructions and included photographs.

I made two different loaves.  The first one had 2 cups of King Arthur white whole wheat flour and 4 cups of bread flour. It was baked in a heavy stainless steel stock pot with a lid.

 The second loaf, I used 6 cups of bread flour and baked it in an 11" cast iron dutch oven with a lid.

Both loaves turned out to be an 11" diameter circle, approximately 3 1/2 inches thick.

The loaf baked in the cast iron pan had more bottom crust than the one in the stainless steel pan.

If you prefer soft textured bread from the bakery, this recipe may not be one you'll like.  It's a dense, full textured artisan bread with a thin crispy top crust and a deep crust on the bottom.  It makes fantastic French toast too.

Basic No-Knead Bread
slightly adapted from Jim Lahey’s My Bread.

6 cups bread (recommended) or all-purpose flour, plus more for work surface
1/2 t. instant or active-dry yeast
2 1/2 t. salt
2 2/3 c. cool water

    In a large bowl, combine the flour, yeast, and salt. Add the water and stir until all the ingredients are well incorporated; the dough should be wet and sticky. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap. Let the dough rest 12-18 hours on the counter at room temperature. When surface of the risen dough has darkened slightly, smells yeasty, and is dotted with bubbles, it is ready.

    Lightly flour your hands and a work surface. Place dough on work surface and sprinkle with more flour. Fold the dough over on itself once or twice and, using floured fingers, tuck the dough underneath to form a rough ball.

    Generously dust a cotton towel (not terry cloth) with enough flour, cornmeal, or wheat bran to prevent the dough from sticking to the towel as it rises; place dough seam side down on the towel and dust with more flour, cornmeal, or wheat bran. Cover with the edges or a second cotton towel and let rise for about 2 hours, until it has doubled in size.

    After about 1 1/2 hours, preheat oven to 425-450 degrees. Place a 6-8 quart heavy covered pot, such as a cast-iron Dutch oven, in the oven as it heats. When the dough has fully risen, carefully remove pot from oven. Remove top towel from dough and slide your hand under the bottom towel; flip the dough over into pot, seam side up. Shake pan once or twice if dough looks unevenly distributed; it will straighten out as it bakes.

    Cover and bake for 40-50 minutes. Uncover and continue baking about 5-10 more minutes, until a deep chestnut brown. The internal temp of the bread should be around 200 degrees. You can check this with a meat thermometer, if desired.

    Remove the bread from the pot and let it cool completely on a wire rack before slicing.

30 Minute Card

Inspired by a card seen online, the sentiment was stamped onto white cardstock and then  I embossed it with a Cuttlebug folder, then used a Stampin' Up bird and heart punch for the embellishments.