Friday, November 26, 2010

Very Thankful

I hope everyone had a wonderful Thanksgiving. I know I did. We had my husband's family over and I cooked. I was finally smart enough to do a lot of things ahead of time, so everthing went very smoothly. We pigged out on turkey, mashed and sweet potatoes, stuffing, corn, cranberry sauce and lots of outrageous desserts. My favorite was the apple crisp pie....YUM!

This was a card I created a few weeks ago after my friend Mary Jo sent me this beautiful stamped image. I think it's by Just Rite. I don't have any copic markers, so I tried my hand at coloring with Distress Inks and a water brush. I think I did ok for my first time. After I colored the image, I sponged the edges with Vintage Photo Distress Ink. I mounted it with foam tape on some DCWV paper from the Indian Summer collection. I had already embellished the paper with some paper tape from K& Company, as well as some glittered foam leaves and some colored Dewdrops I had in my stash. I mounted the plaid mat to a standard size DCWV card....the card was also from their Indian Summer collection.

In addition to being thankful for my family and friends, I'm also thankful for the opportunity to start a blog this year, start my own You Tube channel, and meet a lot of wonderful people who share my passion for crafting. All of you have been so kind and supportive these past few months, and I couldn't ask for anything more!

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

My Poor Forgotten Blog

Time really does fly when you're having fun! Shortly after I started my blog, I discovered You Tube. I was having such a blast making videos, that I forgot all about my poor little blog. So, I'm going to try and make up for lost time. Here's a fall card that I featured in one of my videos. I was walking down my driveway to put my daughter on the bus, and I noticed how pretty all the leaves were that were scattered on the ground. I picked up a couple, and as I walked back to my house, I had a little brainstorm. I decided to make a leaf print background. First, I made sure that the leaf I picked were still pretty pliable. Then I inked up the back of the leaf with Versamark. Once I placed it on the cardstock, I used my brayer to get good, even coverage. I stamped the leaf print a few times, added some copper embossing powder, and then heat set it. As a final touch, I colored the cardstock with different shades of distress ink.

To embellish the cardstock, I cut out a label from one of my Spellbinders dies. The brown patterned paper is from the DCWV Indian Summer collection. I wrapped some metallic gold thread around it, added the cream colored cardstock label with the sentiment, and added copper ribbon loops and satin ribbon to the sides.

A simple card to celebrate the season!

Saturday, August 14, 2010

B is for Bridget

My Yahoo group recently had a new member join a couple months ago. I was happy that she decided to jump right in and join the secret product swap that I host every month. I decided to be her first secret swapper, and since I wanted to give her a big welcome, I filled a big box of goodies for her and I also embellished this little initial for her.

I found this styrofoam "B" at Michael's. I painted it purple (Bridget's favorite color) with an Adirondack paint dabber. To get into the nooks and crannies, I took the top off the bottle and used a paintbrush. I embellished it with a Prima flower, some Prima bling and a little crown. I also stamped a flourish background on the letter with white ink.

Welcome Bridget, we're so glad you joined us!

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

It's funny how sometimes the simpler projects end up being your favorites. That's the case with this card. It's very simple, but for some reason, it's remained one of my faves. I think the other reason I like it is because it's one of the few that actually came together quickly! For me, quickly isn't usually a word I associate with my crafting!

The background paper is from Basic Grey and I inked around the edges a little with Broken China Distress Ink. I added a strip of black magic mesh and a strip of felt border over that. The felt border was bright white, so I pounced on some more distress ink to tone it down (I can't remember which color, but it was probably Tea Dye or Frayed Burlap).

The butterfly stamp is from Hero Arts. I stamped it with Versamark on a piece of glossy paper that I had previously colored with alcohol inks. I like to make a bunch of background papers ahead of time so I have them on hand when I need them. I embossed the image with black embossing powder, cut it out and mounted it on the felt border with a foam dot. I finished the card by adding a little bling to the felt and stamping the sentiment.
Quick and easy!

Friday, July 9, 2010

Sparkly Dragonfly Card

The heat wave here in the east is finally starting to subside! Needless to say, we didn't spend much time outdoors this week. So, I had a little time to make this card. My initial plan for this project was to make a black and white card, but somehow it evolved into this. I embossed the background with my circles Cuttlebug folder. Then I found a white Spellbinders die cut in my stash and stamped the dragonfly. Thanks to my new friend Jo (at, I went to Michael's this week where a bottle of Marcasite embossing powder jumped into my basket! Since it followed me home, I decided to emboss the dragonfly with it. It's hard to tell in the pics, but the image ends up having a lot of sparkle to it. Then I added some flourishes in black ink. Because the whole black and white idea wasn't working for me, I added distress inks to the background. I used Broken China, Peeled Paint and Dusty Concord. Then I used my exacto knife to cut around the wings and pop them up for some dimension. My daugter told me it looked like a dragonfly kite, so I added the three ribbons at the bottom. The last touch was to add some Opalite inks around the edge to make it pop a little.

I've had some Opalite pads for a while now, but I never really used them. They're great! They're interference pigment inks and when you open the lid, all the pads look white. But, when you apply the ink to dark paper.....MAGIC happens! It's kind of like having Perfect Pearls in an ink pad. I'll definitely be using these more in the future.

To get a better view of the Marcasite embossing powder, you can watch Jo's video that she made to show off her beautiful Paris themed tags that she made for the tag swap we were both in.

She's very talented! Hi Jo!

Happy crafting and stay cool in this summer weather!

Monday, July 5, 2010

Butterfly Card with Outline Stickers

I hope everyone had a Happy 4th of July yesterday. We were fortunate enough to be invited to a friend's house who lives in Secaucus, NJ to watch the Macy's Fireworks Spectacular. The view from her house was AMAZING. I recorded a small portion of them and put it on my You Tube channel. You can watch it here:

Since I'm such a butterfly fan, I wanted to make a card that had a large butterfly as the focal point. I used a DCWV textured card for the base and I tried stamping it with Versamark using a harlequin stamp, but it didn't show up very well. I added a piece of purple cardstock that was cut with a nestibilities die and then run through the swirl folder of my cuttlebug. After I inked the high spots with a darker purple ink, I traced the edge of the diecut with an embossing pen and then heat embossed it with gold embossing powder. The gorgeous butterfly sticker was mounted on a piece of handmade paper and then I cut around it. For the finishing touches, I added some bling to the butterfly's wings and tied some fiber around the fold of the card. I adhered the butterfly's body down flat with adhesive and popped up the wings with some foam dots to give it some dimension. Then I added the sentiment with another sticker.

I know a lot of you have seen similar stickers on the Paper Wishes site under the brand name "Dazzles". I have purchased some of these, but most of my Outline sticker collection came from a great company called Pop Ups by Plane Class. They have a great selection, including Dazzles, and I'm fortunate enough to see them at a stamp show I attend every year. Here's a link to their site:

Be sure to check them out. In addition to their sticker line, they also carry metal templates and a gorgeous selection of specialty paper! They have a wonderful gallery of cards to get ideas from as well as some video tutorials.

Monday, June 28, 2010

Vintage Paris Postcard - June Tag Swap

Well, I finally took the plunge and joined Arlene's tag swap. When I read on her blog, , that the theme for June was "Postcards from Paris", I couldn't resist. I was lucky enough to visit Paris for four days in the summer of 1991, and it was more beautiful than I could've ever imagined. Since that summer, I have been a little obsessed with everything Parisian, especially the Eiffel tower.

I have to admit that I was more than a bit intimidated to submit a project for this swap. I've seen the amazing projects that Arlene and others showcase on You Tube and they are breathtaking!

I usually take forever to come up with ideas for projects, but this time around I was lucky. I knew from the moment I signed up that I wanted to create a tag that looked like a French memo board. The swap had two additional challenges that we could take on.....vintage and collage. I decided that for the collage element, I would use six different types of K & Co. "Life's Journey" paper to cover the chipboard base of my tag. After this was finished, I put the ribbon on in a criss cross pattern and added brads to all the places where the ribbon intersected. I distressed the edges and added another piece of chipboard to the back, which I also covered with paper. I finished the back off with an Eiffel tower die cut from Sizzix. I embellished the front of the tag with ribbon roses that I distressed, feathers, a fleur de lis accent from Jolee's, a circular stamp with the Eiffel tower in the center, Webster's Pages trim, and some die cut butterflies. For the vintage postcards, I found some images online and printed them onto cardstock. I covered some with Crackle Accents and the others with Rock Candy Distress Crackle Paint. I distressed them all with Vintage Photo Distress ink and added them to the tag.

These tags took a LOT longer than I thought they would, but I was pretty happy with the way they turned out. I hope they will live up to the expectations of the other ladies in my group. I know that I can't wait to receive their tags!
I did end up making a You Tube video about these first one! I was so nervous! Here's the link if you want to take a look.

Thursday, June 24, 2010

I feel so old!

This is a graduation card that I made for my son, who will be graduating from 8th grade tonight. I can't believe that he's going to be in high school in a few months! When did that happen? I feel SO old. I picked my son up from his formal dinner dance last week and I kept looking around the room and I was shocked at how grown up they all looked. I've known some of these kids since the first grade and now they already look like adults!

I used navy blue and gold on this card because they are my son's current school colors. All the graduation stamps are from Studio G's clear stamp line. The hedgehog stamp is one of Studio G's new red rubber cling stamps. I had to find a way to incorporate a hedgehog because my son LOVES them. Fortunately, the cap that was in the other stamp set fit on his head perfectly. I stamped the yellow background cardstock with the diploma stamp to add a little more interest. I tried to keep this card simple because it is for a 14 year old boy. So, no bling or glitter this time around.

Congratulations, George! We're so proud of you!

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Beach Collage Card

Hi everyone! Welcome to the Paper Castle and my very first blog post! This card was made for a summer challenge that I participated in with the girls in my online scrappin' group. I'm usually such a perfectionist that it takes me FOREVER to come up with an idea and then actually execute it, but I've been trying hard to break out of that perfectionist mode and just play! I've been experimenting with collage a lot lately, and it's really been a lot of fun.
For this card, I first embossed the blue background paper with the Cuttlebug swirls embossing folder. Then I went over the raised areas with a chalk ink pad in a lighter shade of blue. I used spray adhesive to mount the burlap onto the background and then I added the "sand". To make the sand, I took some white glass bead gel medium and mixed in some brown paint. I spread it onto the bottom of the card and left it overnight to dry. In the morning I found that it had dried a little darker than I wanted it to, so since it was still a little tacky, I thought I'd sprinkle a little white embossing powder over it in spots to lighten it up. However, I was surprised to find that when I heated the powder, it didn't really melt into the gel medium. So I finally took some tan craft paint and a stipple brush and lightened it up that way.
The starfish is a laser cut wooden ornament that I found in Michael's this week. I glimmer misted it with Cherry Limeade and added some Radiant Rain in gold. I then added the paper shell embellishment and the gold metal shell charm. The slide mount was white, so I sponged on some Broken China and Vintage Photo distress inks to make it blend in a little better with the background. The little stamp was cut out from a paper pad of travel ephemera. Finally I added the "Summer" brad. It was bright orange but I added some Metallic Mixatives alcohol ink in gold to tone it down. I tore the edges and mounted it on a DCWV card blank. Hope this card gets you all in the mood for a great summer! Thanks for reading my first post and please leave comments and let me know how I'm doing and what I can improve upon. Go easy on me though...I'm a newbie!