Tuesday, May 31, 2011

I Finally Learned...Part Two

I fiinally learned to keep some photos of extra cards I have not posted in
My Pictures in case of emergency!

Like today! I forgot the cord that connects my camera to the computer
at my summer home where I was over the week-end so I cannot transfer
the photo of the card I made to this computer. I even had the cord laid out
last night but it was not in my bag just now when I went to get it.
Senior moment! I hate when that happens!

So instead...I am asking you this question, my friends!
 Have you ever stamped on twill tape?

You can use it in lieu of ribbon and it can be a place for your sentiment too.
This is a chipboard photo from my stash edged with
 a Krylon goldleaf pen.
Buttons from my stash continue the vintage feel..

Like I said last week...It helps to be flexible... 

Sunday, May 29, 2011

The Spotlight's On.....

Dawn Easton

I first noticed Dawn's talent on Splitcoaststampers where she is known as TreasureOiler. 
From there I found her blog, Treasure Oiler Designz, and I have been a follower ever since.
This is probably one of the first blogs I subscribed to--Dawn was definitely an inspiration
when I finally decided to give blogging a try.

Here are 5 reasons why I am so inspired by Dawn:
  1. Her blog is very pleasing to the eye. She uses unique font, attractive colors, and she has a wonderful header. The layout is neat and orderly, just like her cards.
  2. Her style! Dawn knows how to combine several dies in one card so well, and then add other interesting elements such as stitching to finish it off.  Her I'm Here If You Need Me card is a perfect example of this skill. Even the flower is made with a die from MFT.  It is helpful that she shows what dies she uses in case you want to order them.
  3. Dawn is so talented at combining designer papers, and she knows just the right shapes to use as backgrounds behind the main image. If you look at this card, you will see what I mean. She understands design and knows just where to place everything and what size is needed for the correct scale. Many of her cards are just as lovely on the inside as on the front.   
  4. Dawn is very talented when using copic markers. Especially her skin tones and hair shading --spot on. 
  5. Her style runs throughout her cards, but Dawn mixes things up and creates many different looks. She has the Pure Innocence Girls , but then she also creates this wonderful card with precise sewing detail and dimension that really speaks to me. There are the MFT people that she always knows just what to do with, such as in When Life Gets Hard, and even her CAS cards are over the top. Here is an example of that.
Dawn's creativity has been recognized as exceptional and has earned her a place on the Design Team at Verve Stamps (sale this week-end!) and MFT Stamps. She previously designed for Taylored Expressions and is a past Dirty Dozen Member at SCS. Her layouts are original and unique, and she knows just how to combine ribbon, dies, embossed backgrounds, designer paper, stitching, paper piercing and all the other embellishments it takes to make an outstanding card.  If she is creating a card for a sketch challenge, you can be sure it is going to be a work of art.  

Thanks, Dawn, for inspiring me. You are truly an artist.

Saturday, May 28, 2011

It Helps to Be Flexible!!

So...first let me say that this is not my usual SATurday Show and Tell where in the past I have taken you to some places I have been or shown you crafts that others have made. I was not receiving any comments so I wondered if perhaps that was too boring. I will give it a break anyway and if you enjoyed it please let me know.

Second, my post is way late. It's been a busy day.

Thanks for the input yesterday on the white ink. I was using Stampin' Up's Craft White and after looking at it again I wonder if perhaps the pad needs to be re-inked. I am going to give that I try.

I appreciate each and every comment so very much. To know that I am not just talking to myself means the world. Sue, please know that your kind words of encouragement could not have come at a better time. Thank you all.

This is not what I intended to post! I had a card all ready--took the picture and everything and then I noticed a boo boo! An ink smudge. So do I post it or not? I just couldn't bring myself to do it. After all, this is where you are supposed to see my best work, right?

So...instead I am showing you the Cake in a Jar that I made last week. 

I have used a lot of Mason jars to can, but what fun to be able to 
bake a cake right in them!

Here's the recipe that I found on Babble. 
This is a very cool site!

 Peanut Butter Cups in Cake in a Jar

**12-8 ounce canning jars with lids 
 Canola oil spray
 8 ounces peanut butter
1-1/2 cups powdered sugar
1 recipe Devil's food or chocolate cake mix (Make according to directions)
8-10 ounces dark chocolate (I bought candy bars)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Spray the inside of the canning jars with the canola oil. Mix together powdered sugar and peanut butter until smooth. Roll into 1.5-2" balls. Scoop 3-4 tablespoons of cake batter into the bottom of each jar using a large scoop. Place a peanut butter ball into the center of each jar and add an additional 2-3 tablespoons of batter. Wipe up any batter that hit the outside of the jar or around the rim. 

Bake at 350 degrees on a baking sheet for 15-20 minutes or until tops spring back when touched. Remove from oven. Immediately place 1/2 ounce of chocolate on top of the hot cake. Seal with ring and lid and wait for them to pop. Using a towel, pick up the hot jar and turn to coat the entire top of the cake with chocolate. Store in the fridge for up to a week.

**Please note: I did not want to do 12 of these jars, so I put some of the batter in a rectangular pan and only made a half recipe of the peanut butter balls. You could also make some cupcakes.

The recipe was easy to follow and worked out as the directions indicated. The only thing I will do differently next time is not add as much batter after the peanut butter ball. You had to dig down very deep to find it and the jars were too full.

Friday, May 27, 2011

What is Your White Ink of Choice?

I made this card using Stampin Up's Whisper White ink as I have heard from 
several sources that it gives the best impression. I have tried 
Stazon's opaque white in the past and was very disappointed with that.
I thought this ink did a decent job but am still on the hunt for a better one. 
If you use one that you really, really like, I would love it if you would share
the brand with us. I know there is always the option of 
white embossing powder, but I would still like to 
know of another ink if there is one.  

The button behind the Martha Stewart butterfly is heart shaped
and the background stamp is Stampin Up's May the Sun Shine.... 
The card looks a little squatty for some reason, but the size is 4-1/4 x 5-1/2.

It's an easy all-occasion card.

It's Freebie Friday
and nothing's easier and more festive 
for a celebration than cupcakes!

Download cupcake toppers
for Memorial Day
Father's Day

If you are traveling this week-end,
be safe!

Thanks for stopping in and hope
to see you back here tomorrow.

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

A Cupcake Inspirations Challenge

Now if you were presented with these cupcakes,
wouldn't you just think they looked
too beautiful to eat? What a work of art!

Well, the challenge was to use them to get your 
mojo going. Create a card or any kind of papecraft--
 you can play or check out the other entries over at  
Love, love, love those colors!

Fabulous Flowers by Stampin Up
Happy Birthday by Endless Creations

Have a fabulous Thursday!

Monday, May 23, 2011

A Teacher's Gift

We're reaching the end of the school year and some thoughtful parents like to give their child's teacher a gift. Here's an idea for something useful that any teacher would appreciate.

The Pentel RSVP pen has a cap that can be removed. 
The paper is 3-1/2" x 1" --wrap it around a 
skewer to get it in a narrow roll and place inside.
Voila--a matched set!

This is a 5" x 8" junior size legal pad.

If anyone is interested in the directions, let me know and I
can dig up where I got them.

Have a great day!

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Need a Little Treat Box?

Do you ever need a little treat box, but don't have a lot of time? Maybe you need to make a whole bunch of them so it has to be something quick. If so, the One Sheet Box is about as easy as it gets!

I found that two Rice Krispie treats fit inside of it nicely.

That should give you an idea of how much room there is.

You could use it for candy, cookies, party favors or
any kind of a little gift.

It is made with one sheet of 8-1/2" x 11" piece of
cardstock weight paper and  basically only requires
a few scores.

You can find an excellent tutorial

That is the first place you should look if you
are wondering how to make a certain type of
card, box, or bag--or need help with a technique.
There is a world of information there!

Friday, May 20, 2011

You Color My World

It's Friday already and coming to the end of another month. The weather is delightful here in Arizona.

I hope it is becoming nice for everyone, wherever you live.

I have had this birdie stamp for a while now and thought it was time to put some ink to it. Strange, but there are no markings on it as to what company made the stamp! I believe I picked it up on sale at Michaels earlier this year.

I thought the ribbon coordinated well, so I went with those colors,
 embossing the bird.
and coloring the flowers with markers.
I added a few half silver brads and rhinestones, ribbon and flowers
and that was it, other than rounding the corners.
Just a simple card for my stash.

I finally finished off that card with a pieced owl
using the punch by Stampin Up.
Hello Cupcake is part of a $ clear set from Michaels.
(Love those little things.)  
Nestablilities Labels 8 used for layering the owl and a
foam cupcake for embellishment.

Just a Note--I found that the double stick tape was not strong enough for the ruffled ribbon, so I ended up running a line of glue over it as well. I did edit the original tutorial in case you did not catch that.



Father's Day Coupons

Birthday Chart

Loads of Freebies--Some that can be
printed as 5" x 7" to frame  
Compliments of
Check it out!

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Mojo Sketch 191

I needed a card for friends who are moving away and decided to use one of this week's sketch challenges to inspire me. Sometimes if you are having trouble coming up with an idea, this is a good way to get started. I chose Julee's sketch over at Mojo Monday.

Friends by My Sentiment Exactly
Wishing You Best by Stampin Up

Tip: I wanted to make sure that I had enough black paper for the square as what I had layered
the DP on, so I punched a square from that piece before layering the DP 
over it. It was not going to show anyhow.


Instead of showing that the email update is from Donna G Huisinga,
as of Friday, May 20, it will say--
As The Card Rack Turns 
(if I do it right)

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Oh Yes, That Card Set!

I haven't forgotten the Basic Grey card set that I introduced you to here and continued to show you here--have you?

Here are the final three cards making a total of eight--

Left fold card
SU sentiment stamped in plum
Spellbinders fancy tags, punches--SU large oval, 
Martha Steawart border, braid, Michaels rhinestones

Top fold card
Kraft cardstock
DP layered on plum
A Muse sentiment stamped in plum
Ribbon, twine, charm from Wal mart

Left fold card
Penny Black sentiment embossed in Iridescent Ice
Embellishment by Basic Grey, braid, rhinestones from Michaels 

Since eight cards would be bulky for any type of packaging, I decide to make two card sets of four.
This is an easy way to present them-- 

Start with a piece of 8-1/2 x 11 inch cardstock.
Fold in half on the long side.
Fold up from the bottom 2-1/2 inches.
To get the V-shape in the middle, I cut 3/4 inch diagonally on both sides.
Use strong glue or double-sided tape to attach outer flaps. I used both.

I used the buttonhole punch for the ribbon--right in the middle of that side.
It will not interfere with the piece that creates the pocket.
Don't get it too close to the edge and be careful in lining
it up with the back side..
Decorate the covers anyway you like!

Left cover:
Nestabilities Labels 16
Wordsworth sentiment embossed in plum

Right cover:
Nestabilities Labels 14
Hero Arts sentiment embossed in plum

Saturday, May 14, 2011

SATurday Show And Tell

SATurday Show and Tell is a day to feature places of interest or crafts created by other people.
On the first Saturday of each month I give thumbs up to a product that I love and think you should know about. (not today).

This is what I call Book Art. One of my friends made it and I think it is quite clever.
It is made by taking a hardback book and folding the pages in different ways to
create a sculpted look.

Here are some of the ways the pages are folded:

I used it as a centerpiece for the refreshment table at my Book Club meeting--

Have a great week-end!


Friday, May 13, 2011

A Hello Card Anyone Can Make and Free Printables

Looks like Blogger got their problems worked out--thank you very much.

Kitchen Tip
Way back in January I mentioned that I had problems with my chocolate chips cookies coming out of the oven flat as can be. I just found a great article on Sweetopia --Top 8 Tips for Preventing Cookies from Spreading. If you are interested in these hints, read the comments as well for further input.

Card of the Day
My card for today is one of the free downloadables since this is Freebie Friday. It is one of two versions of  this cute guy saying HELLO. Even if you're not a stamper, you can make this card. All you need is a color printer and some white cardstock! The finished size is 4-1/4 x 5-1/2.

You can download this HERE.

The other verion is the same card with the HELLO
all in one color.
You can download that version HERE. 

Both are compliments of mmmcrafts.blogspot.com
and are for personal use only.

Once again I have to marvel at the generosity of the ladies who so openly
share their talents and creativity with the rest of us.

And back in the kitchen--

Better Homes and Gardens offers several Grilling Charts
for fish, meats, poultry, and veggies which you can print out and 
use as handy reference sheets.  

"One thing you can't
recycle is wasted time."

Thursday, May 12, 2011

Let's Talk About Books

This book made for a very interesting discussion at our Contemporary Women's Book Club yesterday. 
A respected journalist and former Washington Post reporter, Ronald Kessler conducted more than one hundred exclusive interviews with current and former Secret Service agents as his research for this book.
He had the endorsement of the Secret Service to write the book and most of the agents gave their name when offering their information to Kessler.

The details of procedures and strategies used by these federal agents to protect
the president, family members and other national leaders are fascinating. 
The reader learns that sometimes the job gets done and other times it does not. 

But what is more fascinating is the "amusing, saucy, often disturbing anecdotes"
 about the personalities and characters of these leaders and
what they are really like when the camera is turned off.

We are agreed that it was a good and easy read and would recommend it to our friends.
Pick it up--I think you will enjoy it!

Kessler has a new book coming out August 2, The Secrets of the FBI, which will have information about the raid on Osama Bin Laden amongst other subjects.

Following are the books we will be reading from June 2011--June 2012:
  • Major Pettigrew's Last Stand by Helen Simonson
  • Sarah's Key by Titiana de Rosnay
  • 97 Orchard: An Edible History of Five Immigrant Families in One New York Tenement by Jane Ziegelman
  • The Assault by Harry Mulisch  
  • Aging with Grace: What the Nun Study Teaches Us About Leading Longer, Healthier, and More Meaningful Lives by David Snowdon
  • The Big Thirst: The Secret and Turbulent Future of Water by Charles Fishman
  • Once Upon a Town: The Miracle of the Northe Platte Canteen by Bob Greene
  • Finding My Voice by Diane Rehm
  • Queen of the Night by J .A. Jance
  • The Greatest Knight: The Unsung Story of the Queen's Champion by Elizabeth Chadwick
  • The Sea Captain's Wife by Beth Powning
  • The Faithful Spy by Alex Berenson
  • Still Life: A Chief Inspector Gamache Novel ( Three Pines Mysteries) by Louise Penny

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

A Fetish for Card Sets

It seems that I make a lot of card sets, but it is a fun gift which anyone who writes notes or sends cards can use. I made this set for my friend who I visited last week.

These are the tiles used to play the game of mah jongg.
I taught Karen how to play a few years ago, and in turn she has
taught some of her friends. Of course, that was part of the week's
scheduled activities!

Red, green, and blue are the three significant colors of the game,
 so I made two cards of each.

I began by printing her name in Microsoft Word
and added a score line above it with the Scor-pal.

Stamp by River City Rubber Works.

I am finishing up the packaging for the Basic Grey card set and
 will be showing you the rest of that soon. 

"The best vitamin for
making friends--B1."

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

I'm Back Home

Hello, My friends--I'm back at home after a wonderful visit in Santa Barbara with a sorority sister. Someone there asked me if my family was used to me jaunting off on solo trips such as this. LOL--This was a first for me, except for a week-end cruise I took a few years ago when a few sister Chi Omegas celebrated a "big" birthday together. Organizing that reunion was one of the best things I ever did in my life. I strongly encourage you to seize the opportunity to reconnect with old friends--don't put it off!

Here are three more of the cards that I made for the card set that I began showing you before I left last week.

Top fold card
Make oval with reverse mask and sponging Aridondack eggplant
Layer cream piece on plum
Cream card base with DP layered on plum
Coordinating button and floss, Michael's ribbon, half silver pearls, dragonlfy brad
Corner rounder punch, Marvy scalloped rounder punch
Stamp:  Garden Silhouettes (SU)

Left fold card
Cream card base with DP layered on plum
Coordinating button and floss, Michael's ribbon
Spellbinders circles--plain and scalloped
White gel pen to accentuate centers of flowers
Stamp:  Garden Silhouettes (SU)

Left fold card
Sentiment embossed in plum
Coordinating buttons, rhinestone, braid, dragonfly brad
Spellbinders Labels 4
Stamp:  SU (old)

"Help one another is part of
the religion of our sisterhood."
--Louisa May Alcott

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Basic Grey is Anything But Basic

Basic Grey makes beautiful designer paper. You can purchase it in 6x6 inch tablets, 12 x 12 inch packets or single sheets. All the sheets in a set coordinate with each other, and the colors are luscious. The only thing basic about it is that basically, you hate to cover it up with other images because it is so beautiful by itself.

One of my favorite things to do when I just want to doodle is to take some of these sheets and start playing with them. I like to see what I can come up with. Basic Grey's Wisteria was one pack that I could not resist when it came out a few years ago. Once the pack is opened, I keep all the pieces in a Ziploc baggie so they all stay together. I still had some left and decided to make a card set.

I made eight different cards and I am going to show you two today..

Kraft cardstock, top-fold card
Layered on plum, sentiment plum embossed
Misc. ribbon, twine, and charm
Stamp: Rubber Stampede (old)

White cardstock, left-fold card
Coordinating buttons
Plum embossed sentiment
Misc. braid, embroidery thread, glue dots
Stamp: Inkadinkadoo

I'll show you the others next week. I will be gone for the rest of this week so please come back next Tuesday, May 10.
Happy Mother's Day to all you Moms!!

I do have a Freebie Friday for you though in case you don't have time to make
a Mother's Day card--

Designed and shared by Spagat Designs

Sunday, May 1, 2011

The Spotlight's On.....

Roxie Glaza

For those of you who follow Splitcoaststampers, you undoubtedly have run into Roxie's name, or surely her cards. She is known there as Rox71. A retired landscape designer, Roxie cleverly named her blog Paper Scaper, which she began last year in June. 

She hosts the Wednesday Sketch Challenge on SCS and has filled that tall task for over five years. Can you imagine what it takes to come up with a new sketch every week? She presents it with descriptive detail, creating at least one card of her own in which she includes the dimensions of all the elements of the sketch. Her card is always over-the-top gorgeous--containing various techniques which she thoroughly explains there and on her blog. Here is an example of last week's card which brought a mere 65 comments in her gallery.

Here are five reasons why I am so inspired by Roxie's creations:
  1. Her attention to detail is incredible, both in her blog design and her cards. Her blog is very pleasing to the eye, and she is consistent in the format of every post.  She presents a lovely card every time and then goes into an explanation that anyone can follow as to how it was created. No guesswork--it's all there for you, and stampers who are not as creative as Roxie (most) appreciate that!  
  2. Although she has a certain style, there is a lot of variety in her cards. One of my favorites is this Victorian Shoe  and another is the Acrylic Block Watercolor. Both very different, both very well explained.
  3. On the right sidebar of her blog, she has some excellent tutorials. I was very excited to see the Wavy Sponged Sky tutorial because I loved her card with the bird on the branch when I first saw it.This was one technique that I could not figure out from her explanation. I actually did give it a try and it turned out miserably. Apparently, there were others who had trouble as well--thus, the reason for the picture tutorial. Thanks, Roxie.
  4. She always makes an envelope to match her card. and puts it in the photo. The quality of her photos are very sharp and clear, and when she is explaining something, often takes a close-up or more than the average number of photos. This Easter Lily card is a perfect example. I love the lace look and know that I can do it now that I have carefully read her explanation. 
  5. You know that I am a practical gal, and I think Roxie's cards are beautiful, yet practical. Although I love the way large bows and puffy flowers look on cards, I just hate the thought of finding special packaging to make them mailable. Roxie's cards don't contain those tyes of embellishments that would be a problem. They are typically made beautiful with embossing folders, Spellbinder shapes, flat brads, lovely-colored main images, and if flowers, they are the flatter type. Just my kind of gal! 
I recognize that Roxie is truly an artist and obviously I am not the only one. I see that currently she is a member of three design teams, and that is an honor not to be taken lightly.

Thanks, Roxie, for stepping
into my spotlight today.
It was a pleasure
having you
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