Friday, August 31, 2012

Happy September to You!

I always love the first day of the month, but today is my favorite one of all--September 1 is my birthday.  What better present to give myself than a new magazine filled with inspiration and a day to scrap, scrap, scrap!

This month our mini mag brings fun ideas for your early fall scrapping.  Take a peek at the gorgeous cover featuring art created by talented scrapper Jill Williams:

This month we have a beautiful free kit that brings nature to your scrapping pages.  I hope you have as much fun playing with it as we have had.  The amazing Amanda Thorderson created this Birds of a Feather freebie for all of our readers.  You can see more of Amanda's work on her blog and be as amazed as we all are with what she can do with patterns.  Her papers just seem to come alive and her use of color is breathtaking.  Get ready to go shop!

Downloads:             {one}  {two}
Please respect this generous gift and do not upload/share this kit.  Friends are welcome to download it here for the next month.  Thank you!

We hope you will join in with so many talented scrappers and share your art with us this month.  Take a peek at our calls and send in your creations.

Thursday, August 30, 2012

A coloring book for Edward

Hello everyone. Nicole here. Lately, it seems like all Edward wants to do is sit on my lap so that he can command me to draw him pictures of cars, turtles, mommy and daddy. The list goes on :) I actually love this. I think that I might have a little artist so I'm doing everything that I can to encourage him to find his creative side.
Since my son loves to draw, I decided to create him a fun coloring book using my Bind-it-All and Clipboards. This was such a quick and easy project and Edward loves it! Go ahead and try creating one of your own. I bet your kids will love it too!
Supplies: Zutter: Bind-it-All Zutter: 6x6 Clipboard Wood Zutter: 1" Antique Brass Owires Other: American Crafts: Chipboard Alphas Clearsnap: Smooch (Mocha) Clearsnap: Mix'd Media Inx (Patina, Truffle) Clearsnap: Glue Gloss

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Cricut and Cri-Kits card

This month the Joy's Life design team was sponsored by Cri-Kit gel pens!  I had the chance to try out some of these really cool pens and expand the possibilities of my Cricut. 

I had so much fun making this card! It looks so detailed, but it was so easy! I used my gypsy to create a two-layered project. I used the silver metallic Cri-Kits pen to draw the design on the first layer, then the second layer cut out around it. I attached a simple square card to the back of the cut-out. 

The 'You are a Treasure' stamp from the Joy's Life You're so Punny set, is perfect for this card with all it's rich gold accents. 
All the papers and gems are My Mind's Eye. The ink is clearsnap.

I didn't try the glitter pens, but I saw some of the items created by the other ladies on the Joy's life team and -wow- those pens are glittery!! I can't wait to give them a try!

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Use Your Stash!

Hi, its Veronica here and today I want to share with you a Halloween mini album.  The entire album was made from my left over stash!  I love using up my stash ... it gives me such satisfaction to know that I am not wasting and I believe it makes me more creative.

There are so many bits and pieces from different lines of paper in this album, some of them are:

My Little Yellow Bicycle
My Mind's Eye
Glitz Designs
Creative Imaginations
Trinity Paper Arts
May Arts

I try and use stash whenever possible and it can be easily done.  How you ask?  There are just a three basic rules that I follow.  First I match the theme, which in this case is Halloween.  I also make sure each facing page matches; so that when you open your album the pages flow together.

Second, I always choose one base color that will flow throughout the album.  This method is easy on the eyes and helps with the cohesive look of the album.

 Notice how the patterns are not from the same collection but they both have the color black.

Third, when choosing patterns for my mini I try and stick to 2-3 colors in the pattern only.  So in this case with the Halloween album, I chose orange and yellow with an accent of green splattered here and there.

I hope I have inspired you to go into your stash and use some of it up by following my three basic methods.  Happy Scrapping!

Monday, August 27, 2012

Blue Jean Baby

I love jeans...

Today I'm going to do a quick tutorial on how I like to color blue jeans with Copic Markers.  Before I start I do have to tell you that I am kind of a blue jean addict.  I LOVE jeans, especially old faded, soft, holey ones that I've had forever.  If it was acceptable to wear jeans everywhere, I would, but my mom would die of embarrassment!  I have some favorite brands that I gravitate towards when shopping, but I'm open to other brands too, after all  I am always searching for the most perfect pair of jeans.  But today I'm not showing you how to wear them, I'm showing you how I like to color them.

I start with Copic Markers B95, B97, and B99, my bottle of Copic Colorless Blender. Plus I use a scrap piece of old jeans.  If you don't have a bottle of 0 Colorless Blender you can use your marker too.

The stamp I'm using today is from the stamp set My Guy Ian from The Greeting Farm.  

Starting with B95 I color his pants leaving a bit of the middle of the leg white.
 Jeans usually have some faded areas on them now, heck even holes, 
 but I normally just stick with the faded front leg area.  
You don't need to color perfectly, just color the pants once and don't worry about missed spots.

Once I have the pants all colored with the B95 I take B97 and staying close to the border of the pants
 I add more color.  It looks like I just drew a line and that is what I did do.

When the pants are outlined with the B97, I use B95 to blend the two colors together.
 It lightens them up and blends the obvious line between the two colors.  
Then I use just a touch of B99 to get some added shaded areas at the very top of his pants and cuffs.
  I use just the tip of the pen to keep the line very thin.

OK the pants are colored and now I am going to add the jeans texture and blend them better.  I put a small drop of my Colorless Blender on the corner of my jean scrap.  It's important that you don't soak your material because the more blender you use the more the ink will spread and it will quickly be outside of the image.  If you have a Colorless Blender marker you can do the same, just remove the tip of the marker and drop some blender on your jean scrap. Don't forget to put the tip back in the marker.

Using the damp corner I lightly dab the colored pants.  I get a great jean texture and the colors further blend.  Start by dabbing lightly and dab more as you need it.  Work slowly, you can always dab more but you can't un-dab (I don't think that's a word but I'm making it one today).  Working in the center of the pants is the best because the color is pushed to the outside of the pants where it should be darker. My close up shows you just how textured and blended my finished jeans are.  If you want to darked your edges more you can add more B99 to the edges.  Depending on how you color the rest of Ian can help you determine that.

The finished card...and you can see that I used B99 for the side seams of the pants.

Sunday, August 26, 2012

Happy Fall Y'All

Fall is not usually my most favorite time of year, just because I know that close behind it is W-I-N-T-E-R ... winters here in northern Illinois can be pretty dramatic some years!  This year, however, I have to say I'm ready for fall - with the hot hot weather and drought like conditions in this area, seeing the rich, majestic fall colors on the trees will be a nice change from scorched browns and tans that have been prominent much of the summer.  

Today I wanted to show you some of the fall and autumn digital kits I've found on the internet ... these kits will be perfect for you to scrap your autumn memories!  So ... here goes:

Autumn's Eve by Twin Mom Scraps {love the owls!}

  Free Fall by Sherwood Studio {the sunflower is stunning!}

Blustery Fall by SuzyQ Scraps {aren't those tiny leaves blowing around cute?}

Hints of Autumn by Connie Prince {love that the kit doesn't have the typical fall colors in it!}

September Hullabaloo by Amy Stoffel {adorable scarecrow and I love the pine cone!}

Midnight Crow by Chelle's Creations {love the whimsical feeling of her kit!}

Fall Delight by LDrag Designs {so much to look at in Lina's kit!}

All Good Things by Erica Belton {just love the golden colors in Erica's kit!}

I Heart Fall by Crossbone Cuts {classic, beautiful fall colors!}

I hope you have found FALL INSPIRATION here today!!

Saturday, August 25, 2012

Dear Scott

Hello! I hope all is well with you! Today I am just going to share a quick and easy mini album that I created for my sister. A few months ago, I came across some post about her relationship with her boyfriend and thought it was so touching so I wanted to create something that she will always have to remember these precious times. I hope she found her soulmate because it's not easy to find that special person you want to be with for the rest of your life but she is SO happy with Scott and I am truly happy for her.
  • Supplies:
  • Zutter: Bind-it-All
  • Zutter: Owires in Antique Brass
  • Other:
  • Creative Memories: Cardstock
  • Webster's Pages: Papers
  • Webster's Pages: Trims
  • Webster's Pages: Jewels
  • Webster's Pages: Acrylic heart
  • Wesbter's Pages: Flower
  • Creative Memories: Heart Punch

Friday, August 24, 2012


A few weeks ago I needed to stick a card in with a gift I was giving to a friend - but I really didn't have the time to dig out all of my paper-craftiness-goodies.

I had purchased some mini 3x3 square cards earlier this year (I have a stash of blank cards and envelopes for emergencies) so decided to pretty one of them up to stick in the gift bag for my friend.

Using a flower embellishment and coordinating scrapbook paper and card stock, I had a mini gift tag / card made in a matter of minutes.  

The following week I made a batch of them ... they would be a perfect little card to stick in someone's lunch bag or purse - just to say "HELLO - I'm thinking of you today". 

I'm going to make Halloween minis to stick in with treat bags this year and I'm pretty sure that everyone on my holiday gift list will be getting a Christmas-y mini card with at least one of their presents this year. 

Fast, fun and easy!

Thanks for stopping by today!


Thursday, August 16, 2012

a watercolor experiment

Longing for my days doing experiments in the college chemistry lab (NOT), I decided to do a little experiment with distress stains. Using my non-stick craft sheet from Ranger, Tim Holtz Distress Stain (Tumbled Glass), 5 manilla tags, 1 sheet of photo paper, and some water, I set out to find out what is my favorite method for getting a watercolor effect.

Experiment #1:
-wipe distress stain on the mat
-spritz stain and mat with water
-also spritz the paper with water
-slide paper over the mat
Result: very pale coloring, because the paper is manilla, this one has almost a yellow/green tinge to its aqua color


Experiment #2:
-wipe distress stain on the mat
-spritz just the paper with water
-slide paper over the mat
Result: a mottled, imperfect soft water color effect, pretty


Experiment #3:
-wipe distress stain over the paper
-spritz water on the paper
Result: Slightly more intense color than #2, but doesn't have the mottled effect, less variance in shades over the card, but still pretty

Experiment #4:
-wipe distress stain on the mat
-spritz mat with water
-wipe glossy sheet of photo paper over the mat
Result: splotchy swipes and dots of color, color more true to the stain color since paper base is white (versus manilla) (must have had a little bit of leftover green on the mat--oops)


Experiment #5:
-Wipe the whole tag with stain
-Starting 3/4" inch from the top, wipe this bottom part of the tag again with stain
-Keep repeating the process moving down 3/4" inch after each layer
Result: an ombre effect that is very "in" right now. However, the bottom part of the tag (the part that recieved the most "swipes" was starting to pill and disintegrate)

Experiment #6:
-wipe distress stain on the mat
-spritz mat with water
-wipe manilla tag over the mat
Result: similar mottled effect to #2, but without the visible swipe lines

So, do I have a favorite? No, I like them all! It's helpful to see what effect each method produces though. Using Fiskars circle and cloud squeeze punches, Sizzix embossing plates, ribbon scraps, some twine, and a cute printed sentiment, I turned these experiments into tags--perfect for attaching a gift card to the back. I like experiments. Not enough to go back to college chemistry though.

So, did you see my submission call for watercolor projects in the July issue of Scrapstreet ? You can check it out here.
No matter what method you use to achieve a watercolor effect (paint, stain, mists, watercolors, or something else), I'd love to see it! The deadline is August 19th.

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