Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Christmastime in the City

Kim is still our hostess this week at Stampotique Designers Challenge blog and her challenge is "Anything Goes!" Here's what she had to say about her challenge!
"This our last challenge of the year and it will run the whole month of December. Our theme is an easy one so show us your best work using Anything Goes. For this month only, you will have the opportunity to enter the challenge 5 times (one for each week)- 5 chances to win the random $30 gift certificate for Stampotique stamps. We hope we see a lot of you entering!"
If you'd like the chance to win your choice of $30 worth of Stampotique stamps, you should play along. Visit Stampotique Designers Challenge blog and be sure to read the rules so that you'll have the chance to win a great prize!!! 


Here's my card with Stampotique's Cityscape (France Papillon) and Splatter Circle (Janet Klein).

Cityscape was stamped onto a sheet and a scrap of Neenah cardstock using Onyx Black VersaFine ink and heat set with Filigree Clear Detail embossing powder. The Copic Airbrush System was used with B63, B66, B69, B79, and B99 Copic markers to create a night sky over the larger Cityscape panel. This panel was then die-cut with a die from the 5x7 Card Creator die set by Spellbinders.

Copic markers were used to color the Cityscape that had been stamped on a leftover scrap of cardstock. This version was fussy-cut, then adhered over its counterpart on the card panel.

A Nestabilities Circle die was used to die-cut a scrap of white metallic cardstock. Splatter Circle was stamped onto the circle using Frost Dazzle VersaMark ink, then heat set with Polysparkle embossing powder. This added some texture, sparkle, and shine to the circle, which you can't see, but I swear is there. This circle was then adhered in position in the night sky to become the moon in my little scene.

Santa's sleigh and reindeer were cut from a very old Winter Sleigh Scene chipboard set by Make It Crafty. This chipboard was carefully pressed into the Frost Dazzle VersaMark inkpad, heat set with Ebony Sparkle embossing powder by Sparkle and Sprinkle, and added to the Cityscape scene, which was then matted, and adhered to a white card front. 

Thanks for visiting today!

I shall enter this card into the following challenges:
Love to Create Challenges: Create a Scene 
Monday Morning Challenges: Christmas 
Simon Says Stamp Monday Challenges: Anything Goes
Cards 4 Guys Challenges: The Big Guy
Sparkle and Sprinkle December Challenges: Anything Goes

Friday, December 12, 2014

Gift Giving Season!

The holidays are rapidly approaching so this week's challenge at The Outlawz Coloring Challenges is Gifts!

You should definitely enter this challenge. If you've got any sort of stamps that feature presents or are planning to give gift cards or create hand-crafted gifts, you can enter! All you need to do is color an open line image with any colorant you choose! You should also visit my Outlawz Coloring Challenge Teamies' blogs for inspiration! Carla, Penny, and Laine are seriously talented!

My card features SCACD's In The Present which is a digital stamp.



In The Present was resized in PhotoElements and printed onto Neenah cardstock using my laser printer. The image was colored with Copic markers, then fussy-cut.

The patterned papers are from an older 6x6 pad by My Mind's Eye. I used Die-namics dies to die-cut patterned paper and old Emaginations snowflake punches to punch silvery vellum.

This is an incredibly short post for me, but after the last few windbaggy verbose posts, I needed a break!

Thanks for visiting today!

 

Thursday, December 11, 2014

A Chanukah Gift-Pocket Tag Book

Now that I've shown you how to change SCACD's Kathi's Menorah, Unlit for each night of Chanukah, I'm going to share my latest project that I created with this fun digital stamp!

I created a gift pocket-tag style gift book that is perfect for those who have teenagers who just want gift cards, for spouses that would like a coupon book, and for those distant friends or family who get a gift each and every night of Chanukah! The pocket size is perfect to fit a gift card, tickets, cash, coupons, or a check!

Here are three views of it!

The Cover


The gift-pocket tags for the first four nights


The gift-pocket tags for the last four nights


As in the tutorial below, I created nine different versions of SCACD's Kathi's Menorah, Unlit using PhotoElements. I reduced each of them, then ganged 'em onto a standard letter size, which was then printed out with my laser printer onto Neenah cardstock.

The menorah was relatively small, so I was worried about staying within the lines using my Copic markers and I'm to Virgo to deal with going out of 'em. I wasn't feeling like using colored pencils either, so I was elated to discover that Copic At You Spica glitter pens (also available individually), Wink of Stella glitter markers, Sakura Stardust Pure Glitter pens, and Gelly Roll Glaze pens worked wonderfully. So, I used various combinations of these pens to color all the images. Sadly, you probably can't see the glitter on the Menorahs or the glossy texture of the candles on these photos. You'll have to take my word for it!

The tags were die-cut from black cardstock using the Tag and Bookplates Alterations die. I was able to cut several at a time, which was great.  Each tag was scored at 2 3/8" (big enough for a gift card). 1/8" red-liner tape was used to adhere the bottom and left side of each tag. These were set aside, while I created a background paper for them. Yes. I know I could have used some of my sizeable huge stash of patterned paper, but I felt like making a mess wanted to try something new!

I had recently seen Andy Skinner's brilliant video, Mixed Media Backgrounds, that shows how he creates fabulous backgrounds using Media Fluid Acrylic (MFA) paints by DecoArt and isopropyl alcohol. I wanted to give this technique a try, but guess what? My results are almost completely different than his! However, I was still stoked by the result.

Since I'm a verbose kind of person, I'll explain what I did and where I think I went awry. 

140 lb. Mixed Media cardstock was coated with DecoArt's Media Gesso, which dries quickly. I brushed a wash of Cobalt Blue Hue MFA over it, then dripped and spritzed isopropyl alcohol over the paint and left it to dry. A wash of Primary Magenta MFA was brushed over the previous layer and alcohol was dripped/spritzed over it. The same process was repeated with Dioxazine Purple, then Diarylide Yellow MFAs. I toyed with adding a wash of Titanium White MFA, but my bottle is emptying rapidly, so I opted against it. I also toyed with the idea of stenciling and adding various textural elements, but since so much of the background was going to be covered, I decided against it. Next time.

I must say that I was relatively happy with my background though it bears very little resemblance to the gorgeousness created in Mr. Skinner's video. 

I *think* that I didn't let each layer of paint and alcohol dry thoroughly, which might be why I didn't get the mottled look he achieved. I also used a spritzer in addition to just dripping and maybe there was just too much alcohol involved (isopropyl – as I don't drink and craft), but I'm not at all sure.

Back to the project! The next step was to cut up the painted background to be placed behind each Menorah. I was able to get all nine panels from the 9" x 12" sheet of cardstock with enough left over so that I could die-cut the ring/hole reinforcements.

The edges of the reinforcement, background panels, and image panels were sponged with either Archival ink by Ranger or Memento ink by Tsukineko.

The title page tag was trimmed to be a bit larger than the pocket pages. The image panel was edged with Black Soot Distress ink, then matted on shimmery black vellum. This vellum was also die-cut with dies from the Handwritten set of dies by Little B.

The booklet was bound with a binding ring and a Hamsa charm was added using ribbon and jump rings.

Thanks for visiting today!

I shall enter this booklet into the following challenges:
The Crafter's Cafe Challenges: Christmas/ Holiday Season
Altered Eclectics: Anything Goes
Party Time Tuesdays: Anything Goes
Scrapy Land Challenge #7: Anything Goes

Kathi's Menorah: A Tutorial!

Greetings! Here's a photo-heavy tutorial on how to add the candles to SCACD's Kathi's Menorah, Unlit, so that you can have a Menorah showing the correct number of candles for each of the eight nights of Chanukah.

This tutorial uses a fairly old version of PhotoElements.

Kathi's Menorah, UnlitThe gaps in the Menorah and candles are not there in real life.


Step One: 
Crop the lit candle from the digital stamp.
Click "Save As" and name the file something catchy like "Candle" so that you will have two files – one for the candle and one for the Menorah.



Step Two
Click "Save As" and name the file something catchy like "Candle".



Step Three
Re-open Kathi's Menorah, Unlit and do another "Save As" so that you will have one pristine file and one that you will alter.


Step Four
Open your new Menorah file.
Along the left side of your screen, you will see an Eraser tool, that surprisingly looks like a nice pink eraser. 
Click on the eraser to choose it, then erase the candles in the lower right hand corner.
SAVE!



Step Five
Under "Image" in the menu bar, click on "Resize" to change Canvas Size for the Menorah.
You will be changing the height so that you will have room to add the candles. 
This photo actually shows both files on the screen.



Step Six
Open your new Menorah file AND your Candle file.
Copy the candle image and drag it into place on the Menorah.


Here it is in place.


Step Six B
 In the "Layer" area of the menu, click "Arrange", and send to the back.

Be sure to Save again!



Step Seven

Copy the candle again, drag it into place on the Menorah, click "Arrange", and send it backward.


Do the "Save As" again, this time naming the file 1st night Menorah or something equally as catchy!


This is how it will look!


Repeat Steps 6, 6B, and 7 for each night, copying and dragging each candle into place and sending it to the back. 
Be sure to SAVE AS each night, i.e. 1st Night, 2nd Night, etc. 

Once you a different version of Kathi's Menorah, Unlit for each night of Chanukah, you can reduce or enlarge them to make them fit your project!

If you have any questions, please let me know!

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Warm wishes!

Kim is still our hostess this week at Stampotique Designers Challenge blog and her challenge is "Anything Goes!" Here's what she had to say about her challenge!
"This our last challenge of the year and it will run the whole month of December. Our theme is an easy one so show us your best work using Anything Goes. 
For this month only, you will have the opportunity to enter the challenge 5 times (one for each week)- 5 chances to win the random $30 gift certificate for Stampotique stamps. 
We hope we see a lot of you entering!"
If you'd like the chance to win your choice of $30 worth of Stampotique stamps, you should play along. Visit Stampotique Designers Challenge blog and be sure to read the rules so that you'll have the chance to win a great prize!!! 

Here's my card, which features Stampotique's Cocoa Bird (Kira Nichols), perched upon a finger from the Hand (Josie Cirincione).



Cocoa Bird was stamped with Tuxedo Black Memento ink and colored with Copic markers. Cocoa Bird was also stamped onto Eclipse Tape and fussy-cut. The Eclipse Tape mask was adhered over his colored counterpart. My Stamp-a-ma-jig stamp positioner was used to stamp the Hand under the bird's talons and tail feathers (which he had already shaken). The Hand was then colored using grey markers. I lifted the mask and several layers of Clear Gelly Glaze pen were added to Cocoa Bird's eyes, beak, and talons to give them some dimension and shine. 

The patterned paper is from old Nordic somethingoranother 6x6 pad by Basic Grey. The patterned paper reminds me of a Fair Isle knit. I should have attempted to color Cocoa Bird's sweater that way but I didn't. There's always next time. Since I personally think Cocoa Bird is drinking coffee and I LOVE live on coffee, you'll be seeing him (or her) frequently.

Cocoa Bird's image panel and its mat were die-cut with Nestabilities Card Creator dies. "Warm" was die-cut using Missy Micro font die by Diversions. Holiday is also a Die-Versions die. "Wishes" is from the Best Wishes die by Elizabeth Craft Designs.

Thanks for visiting today!

I shall enter this card in the following challenges!

Friday, December 5, 2014

Cheers!

Today is Bartender Appreciation Day, so my team mates at The Outlawz Coloring Challenges are celebrating in our own special ways.

Ppinkydolls Art is sponsoring our Outlawz Coloring Challenges during December.

You should definitely enter this challenge. If you've got any sort of stamps that feature beverages, you can enter! All you need to do is color an open line image with any colorant you choose! You should also visit my Outlawz Coloring Challenge Teamies' blogs for inspiration! Carla, Penny, and Laine are seriously talented!


Here's my card that features Rubbernecker's Margarita Glass and the lime from their Garnish set.


The Margarita Glass was stamped with Tuxedo Black Memento ink, colored with Copic markers, then fussy-cut. A VersaMarker pen was used to color over the image (except the salt) and then heat embossed with Filigree Clear Detail embossing powder. This process was repeated three times to build up layers of dimension and shine to the glass. When I was happy with the result, I added some glue to the salted rim and dumped on Prisma Glitter and let it set. Sadly you can't see the glassy dimension from this photo, though you can actually see the glitter!

I layered the patterned paper from the Sweet Threads 6x6 pad by Basic Grey according to a sketch from Cheerful Sketches Challenge Blog. Circles were cut using my ancient CM Cutting System. The edges of all layers were sponged with Black Soot Distress ink.

The lime from Rubbernecker's Garnish set was stamped three times with Tuxedo Black Memento ink, colored with Copic markers, then fussy-cut. The lime segments were coated with a layer of Clear Gelly Glaze pen to make them appear moist and fruity.

The Margarita Glass was adhered over the circles, though apparently I was feeling a bit wonky seeing as the vertical hearts are diagonally. Oh well... 

Some chunky silver glitter by Stampendous was added under the glass to ground it. The three limes were adhered to the circle.

Silver glitter paper was die-cut with a Cheers die by Elizabeth Crafts and adhered to a tag die by Impression Obsession. Silver glitter paper was punched with a generic circle punch that I've had forever, then the glittery circles were added to finish the card.

Here's the sketch so you can see how I did.



Thanks for visiting today!

I shall enter this card in the following challenges. 
Cheerful Sketches Challenge Blog

Thursday, December 4, 2014

SCACD Holiday Inspiration Day

Greetings! I'm really thrilled to be participating in today's SCACD Holiday Inspiration Day! SCACD's design team has been joined by some terrific crafters to showcase SCACD's Digital Stamps!

Once you've seen my project, please visit SCACD's Hearts and Hugs Blog to see who is participating and to find all the links. I know you'll want to visit all of our blogs to be inspired.

So, without further ado, here's my card, which uses Kathi's Menorah!

The observant among you will notice that this beautiful digi stamp, Kathi's Menorah, is named for me! Isn't that exciting? I'm famous! In fact, I'm a legend in my own mind. *grin*

What's more, there's a second version of the stamp bearing my name. It's Kathi's Menorah, Unlit and this version was a special request from me. The set features the same gorgeous Menorah, but the Menorah doesn't have candles inserted in it. The candles come separately, in both lit and unlit versions, so that the amount of candles can be added to the Menorah to reflect which night you're celebrating! Is that cool or what? I'll be sharing a project using this set next week, so be sure to come back and take a peek!

Anyway, Kathi's Menorah was resized in PhotoElements, printed out onto Neenah cardstock, then colored with Copic  (the Menorah and the flames) and Shinhan Touch Twin (candles, Star of David, and ground) markers.

The image panel was matted with gold metallic cardstock. Blue glitter cardstock was embossed with a Cuttlebug swirly embossing folder to echo the swirls on Kathi's Menorah. The raised swirls were lightly sponged with Golden Glitz Delicata ink, then this piece was matted with gold metallic cardstock. Since it's kind of obvious that this is a Chanukah card, I didn't add a sentiment.

Thanks for visiting today and remember to pop by SCACD's Hearts and Hugs Blog so that you can find even more great holiday inspiration featuring SCACD's awesome Digital Stamps!!!

I shall enter this card in the following challenges:
Fan-Tastic Tuesday Challenges: Anything Goes with a Twist/Embossing
Crafty Creations Challenges: Embossing
Crafting for all Seasons Challenges: 'Tis the Season