Thursday, May 28, 2015

Update & a "thanks" card for my home health care nurse!

I'm quite sure that a lot of my faithful followers are wondering if I fell off the face of the planet...I did not, but about a week after my previous post I had an aortic aneurysm at around 2 am and fortunately it woke me up and my husband called 911 and I was taken to the nearest trauma center where I had open heart surgery to repair it.  At the time they were telling my husband that I only had about a 20 percent chance of  making it.......but I did and here I am, thank you God!!!  I spent ten days in the cardiac care unit and then another three weeks in rehab before coming back home and day by day I've been getting stronger.  I would say that I am 90 percent back to where I previously was.  Needless to say my crafting went by the wayside for quite a while.

I was fortunate to get the same home health care nurse the I had during my bout with cancer....she is not just my nurse, she is my friend and I love her dearly and for my first craft project since being sick, I made this "thanks" card for her.


The beautiful background paper is actually a wallpaper sample that I printed on my Canon called "Classic Promenade"  by Park Place Studio - Heritage Home Book [wallpaperstogo.com] and the I cut the panel using the "stitched rectangle" die from my "MFT Blueprints 13" die set.  For the frame, I used a scan of my "large filigree frame" die from the "Coved Labels" die set by Frantic Stamper to make a smaller version of the frame and removed the corners to fit my A2 card size.  The gorgeous butterfly is the "Peacock Butterfly" Specialty die by Wild Rose Studio with some pink vellum covered with shimmer using my "Clear Wink of Stella" behind it and then I added pink pearls for the body.  The pretty flowers were made using my "Arianna Blooms" dies by Heartfelt Creations and the leaves are "Tender Leaves" dies by Memory Box.  The leaves behind the butterfly were cut using my "Curvy Leaves" dies by Elizabeth Craft Designs.  The "thanks" was cut with my Cameo using a free file from Miss Kate Cuttables called "Pretty Words Set".  I finished off the card front with some large pink pearls.  Here are a couple of close-up photos.



For the inside of the card, I used some pretty 65# green parchment called "Celadon" from the Neenah Creative Collection.  The text is computer generated using the "Gravura LET" font.  I used the "Matte" setting on my Canon so the ink stayed wet enough for me to use clear embossing powder and heat set it so that the text is embossed.  I used two borders that I cut with my Martha Stewart "Deco Fan" punch.  Here is a photo.


For my "signature tag" I decided to use the shape of the "Peacock Butterfly" on a piece of the pink parchment called "Shell" from the Neenah Creative Collection and I used the same "Gravura LET" font.


Lorraine loved her card and I loved making it for her!  Hopefully, I will now be crafting a bit more!!!

Thanks so much for stopping by, come back soon and please don't forget that I love reading your comments!!!

Supplies List
Papers:  Recollections 110 lb. Ivory (card base), Recollections 65 lb. cardstock. "Classic Promenade"  by Park Place Studio wallpaper sample, Neenaj 65# "Shell" & "Celadon" parchment from the "Creative Collection
Ink:  Tsukineko "VersaMarkWatermark"
Tools:  Silhouette "Cameo", "Milwaukee" Heat Gun
Accessories:   "Clear" Wink of Stella Brush Tip Marker,, Martha Stewart "Deco Fan" punch, My Favorite Things "Blueprints 13 Stitched Rectangle: die, "large filigree frame" die from the "Coved Labels" die set by Frantic Stamper, "Peacock Butterfly" die by Wild Rose Studio,"'Tender Leaves" dies by Memory Box, "Curvy Leaves" die by Elizabeth Craft Designs, "Deco Fan" punch by Martha Stewart, "Arianna Blooms" dies by Heartfelt Creations, Pink Pearls by Recollections


Tuesday, February 10, 2015

Birthday card inspired by Christina Griffiths!!!

If y'all have not visited Christina's YouTube channel, you need too, so here is a link!!!  Trust me, you will learn so much by watching her videos!  I had come across one of her cards while surfing on Pinterest (which I do way more than I should) where she cut her Spellbinders ovals in half for her card design and I had just recently bought a new set of Spellbinders Ovals, so I decided to have a go at it as a design for a birthday card for a really dear friend that I have made online.  I have to tell you, by the time I found out her birthday was on the 26th of January, I knew there was no way that I could design and create a card for her in time..............so I told her she "would be celebrating her birthday late this year"!!!  At any rate, here is the card that I made for her (I mailed it last week and she should be receiving it today).


I designed the "Birthday Wishes" using the "Corinthia" font and cut it using my new "Pazzles Inspiration Vue".  I want to point out that for the sentiment, I used Recollections 110 lb. cardstock and my "Vue" cut it like it was butter!  I also designed the lattice frame by first cutting the "stitched" rectangle die by My Favorite Things .  I designed the lattice mat to be the same size as my die and when I cut it using my Cameo, I only cut the outer edge to start with.  Then I removed the rectangle from my cutting mat while it was still in my machine and replaced it with my die cut and made sure that it was securely adhered to my mat and then I cut the lattice part....I love that look!  There are four layers of the ovals from my die set, Spellbinders "Elegant Ovals" (S4-425) and I cut all of them in half and then layered them.  I used my Martha Stewart "Hydrangea" punch for the tiny flowers, colored the center of them with my Copic "Blush" (R20) marker and added a tiny pearl.  I also used two tiny pink pearls to dot my "i's" on the "Birthday Wishes" and of course, I just had to use some "Clear" Wink of Stella on my sentment.  Here is a close-up!


For the inside of the card, I was going to place a "corner" in each of the top corners using one of Bird's "Doily Corners" (you can find the free cut files here at Bird's site) that has a lattice in it to match the theme on my card front, but got to thinking how cool it would be to just cut directly to that panel and use the same "stitched" die rectangle.  So I removed the outer frame as well as the first very tiny lattice row from Bird's design and I guess you could say that I "inlaid" the corners!  I also used some of my microfine glitter on the top corners of the pink layer beneath the cream layer so that the corners would be glittery and would match the "glittered" border that I used at the bottom.  Gosh, I hope I am making sense...LOL!!!  The text is computer generated using the "Corinthia" font, which is becoming one of my favorites!  I made my "enamel" dots for each corner using the same pink cardstock.


Here are a couple of close-ups of the inside of the card.



For my "signature" label on the back, I used another Spellbinders die.


I cut my envelope using a Lori Whitlock cutting file...you can find it here and it includes a "liner", which I think makes the envelope look so elegant!!!


Once again, thank y'all so much for visiting my blog and please don't forget to leave your comments below....I SO enjoy reading them!!!  Hurry back!

Finished Card Size:  A2 (4.25"x5.5")
Supplies List
Papers:  Recollections 110 lb. Ivory (card base), Recollections 65 lb. cardstock. Recollections "Garden Florals" Paper Pad (envelope flap)
Ink:  Ink:  Tsukineko "VersaMarkWatermark"
Tools:  Pazzles "Inspiration Vue", Silhouette "Cameo", "Milwaukee" Heat Gun
Accessories:   "Clear" Wink of Stella Brush Tip Marker, Suze Weinberg "Ultra Thick Embossing Enamel", Recollections "Pearls", Martha Stewart "Hydrangea" Punch, My Favorite Things "Blueprints 13 Stitched Rectangle: die, Spellbinders "Elegant Ovals" (S4-425) & "Fancy Tags One" (S4-236), Copic Marker

Let's talk about the "old" JustRite Stamps and the MISTI!!!

Hello everyone!!!  This past weekend I came across my "old" JustRite stamps...you know the ones that you had to buy the special wood blocks for!!!  I had never been able to get a good stamped image with those suckers and it was like a light bulb went off in my head.....I'll bet I can find a way to use them with my MISTI and I did!  I feel pretty sure that I could have used some of my EZ Mount on them, but that stuff is pretty expensive so I got to thinking that maybe I could just use some Aleene's "Tack-It Over & Over" to make them cling to my MISTI and it worked and the images stamped pretty good without transferring any ink from the stamp to my paper as you can see in the photo here.  That worked on these two, but later I was stamping them to make a cover on my Avery Elle pockets that I store my stamps in and some of them transferred ink to my stamped image unfortunately!


Someone at Splitcoast said that happens because the rubber is not etched deep enough and so then I had to come up with a solution to that problem and the thing I thought of was a mask that would cover the rubber around the etching.  I scanned the stamps to make cutting files for them and tried them using some contact paper.....that cut really great but was way to flimsy.  The problem is that you almost always have to stamp the images at least two times to get a good clear image...so now I decided to try some Dritz "Clear Template Plastic" that I had purchased from Joann's for making stencils and it worked, but I think it may be just a tad too thick.  I cut mine using my "Pazzles Inspiration Vue" and it did a great job!!!  A long time ago I had purchased some quilting plastic from Hobby Lobby and I think it might be just a little thinner, so the next time I cut them I will use that.   Here is a photo of the plastics....the on the bottom is the "quilters plastic" that I think may be a tad thinner.



They say "a picture is worth a thousand words" so here are some photos. 

This shows the stamp attached to the lid of my MISTI using the Aleene's "Tack-It Over & Over" with my "mask" placed on top of the stamp.  You also have to use some Aleene's "Tack-It Over & Over" on the back side of the "mask".  The good thing about the plastic material is that you can clean the ink off of it using a paper towel and some alcohol.


Here is a close-up shot.


I numbered my stamps and also used a Sharpie to put the number on the back right side of each stamp  as you can see in this photo.  I placed that number on each stamp in the same place so that when I position my stamp on the cardstock in my MISTI the stamp will be "right side up" and not upside down.


For storing the masks, I cut the bottom and right side off of one of my Staples "Clear 5 1/2 x 8 1/2 sheet protectors" so that it opens like a book and when opened I placed all of my masks for the stamps (which would actually be the negative cut out) on the right side and the protector and then I took the cut outs (which is the positive) and numbered them, put some repositional tape on the back of them and placed them on the left side.  I can use then to mask the stamped images...no sense in wasting them.  On the front I stamped all of the stamps, in order, on a piece of copy paper and taped it to the front of my protector.  Whew....I sure hope I am making sense.  Here are some photos.



I also want to mention that when I purchased those JustRite stamps, I also purchased a couple of the Monogram Kits which I never ever used.  I have two different sets one is the "Times New Roman" and the other is the "Special Ocassions", so I decided to try them with the Aleene's "Tack-It Over & Over" and my MISTI and I'm loving them!!!  Here are some photos.




I hope this helps those of you that would like to use those old "unused" stamps now that you have a MISTI!!!


Thursday, January 29, 2015

Hey y'all, I'm ready for Spring!!!!!!!!!!!!

What about you???  My youngest step-daughter's birthday is tomorrow and for her birthday I wanted to give her a little taste of Spring.  She too is a cancer survivor and like me ever since she went through her treatments she just stays cold, so what could be more appropriate?  We are taking her out to lunch tomorrow and that is when we will give her the card...I sure hope she likes it!

Just recently I purchased an Elizabeth Craft Designs die set called "Curvy Leaves" and right about that time I came across a card by Pam Sparks that really caught my eye.  I think I was on Pinterest, but I can't remember for sure.  At any rate, she used a Memory Box die on it that was a leafy frame, called "Massa Leaf Frame" and it got me to thinking that I could cut some of my "Curvy Leaves" and scan them and make me my own leaf frame die.  I also thought why not make it the exact size of the leaves on my new die and then cut some die cuts and place on top of the cut file I made in my cutter software.....so that is exactly what I did!  Here is a link to Pam Sparks card that I cased....scroll down to the green one!  I added a lattice to my frame.  I used several Memory Box dies, including the Finn Butterfly, which was WAY too big for my card, so I scanned it, downsized it and cut it with my cutter to fit my card.  The pretty flowers were made using my Memory Box "Fabulous Phlox" dies that I've had for quite a while, but I think this may be either the first or second time I've used them...but I'm liking the look and will be using them a lot more!!!  I inked the edges of the flowers using "Crushed Olive" distress ink.  The enamel dots were made by me using cardstock, ultra thick embossing power and my heat gun.  I also used a little "Clear" Wink of Stella...seems like I just can't make a card these days without using some of it...LOL  Well, here is the card I made.


And here are several close-up photos.  One thing I want to point out is my little ladybugs!!!  I can't remember where I saw this, but you can make ladybugs out of red liquid pearls.  I used some black Stickles to make the heads and then used a black Sharpie to put the line down the body and the little black dots.  Aren't they adorable!!!  



I modeled my "Happy Birthday" after the Memory Box one using the "Crazy Girlz Blond BTN" font.  I made a base and then another layer with the "HAPPY BIRTHDAY" cut separate and I used some of my Elizabeth Craft Designs Double Sided Adhesive to add some of their "Cool Diamond" Silk Microfine Glitter to the letters....love that stuff, they feel just like velvet!!!


For the inside of the card I used some more of my die cut leaves and "inlaid" them to make the border across the bottom.  I really like that look!  In this case, I "blocked" the personal message to Janice....for her eyes only!


For my "signature label" on the back of the card I used a Spellbinders die.  Thanks for stopping by to take a peek and please hurry back!!!

Finished Card Size:  5.5" Square
Supplies List
Papers:  Recollections 110 lb. "Ivory" and 65 lb. Colored Cardstock, DCWV "Black Glitter Paper" (butterfly body), Canson "Kiwi Iridescent"
Ink:  Tsukineko "VersaMarkWatermark"
Tools:  Pazzles "Inspiration Vue", Silhouette "Cameo",  "Milwaukee" Heat Gun, Sizzix "Big Shot"
Accessories:   "Clear" Wink of Stella Brush Tip Marker, Memory Box "Finn Butterfly" & "Fabulous Phlox"  Dies,  Spellbinders "Ironworks Accents" Die, Recollections Pearls, Elizabeth Craft Designs "Cool Diamond" Silk Microfine Glitter, "Clear Double Sided adhesive" and "Curvy Leaves" Die, Suze Weinberg "Uttra Thick Embossing Enamel", Ranger "Ruby Red Liquid Pearls"  & "Black Diamond" Stickles

Thursday, January 22, 2015

Pazzles "Inspiration Vue" Review & Free File Giveaway!!!

Ok y'all.......some of you know that I just recently purchased the Pazzles Vue machine and it arrived here on the 9th and as soon as I received it, I started doing test cuts, so today I going to post my results!  First off, here is a photo of my new Vue!


 I call that my "Cutter Station" as I keep my Silhouette Cameo (the one that has the gorgeous black and white cover to match the decor of my craft room, that my friend Tammy made and gifted to me...love it!!!) on the upper shelf and then my new Vue on the bottom shelf.  Tammy is in the process of making me a cover for the Vue right now.

The first day, I ran some test cuts using some 65# Recollections cardstock...it is one of my favorite cardstocks to use with my cutters as in my opinion it cuts like butter!  The "Happy Birthday" is very tiny and I designed a mat to go underneath it.  I placed the quarter in the photo so that you could tell how tiny some of the test cuts were.  For the test, I set the blade at 2, pressure at 24  and speed at 4 and did one pass.  Since the "Happy Birthday" is SO intricate, I slowed the speed down to 1 and did 2 passes.  Here is the photo of that test.


The nest day I did my second batch of test cuts.  The largest heart frame was cut using some DCWV Shimmers cardstock and it too cut like butter!!! I found that image online, I think it was a free embroidery image, and I made a png out of it in Photoshop CS3, opened it in the InVue software and made me a cutting file....there is the outer frame (purple) and then an inner decorative piece (pink) and it is very intricate!  The 5" border is a file that I downloaded from the Pazzles Craft Room and downsized it to 5" and look how good it cut!!!  Someone was saying that they have trouble cutting the black Recollections 65# cardstock....but it cut perfect with the blade at 2, pressure 24 and 1 pass.


 This next test cut was done on paper versus cardstock.  When you cut paper you need to use an older mat that is not so sticky and I would recommend cutting a piece of paper a little bigger than the image so that if it sticks to your mat really bad, you have not wasted an entire sheet of designer paper!  I used a piece of paper from the Recollections "Black & White Paper Pad...the little chick image is less and 2.25" tall!


 One thing I want to mention here is that I am a "2 cutter person".  I also own the Silhouette Cameo and I did own the Sizzix eClips but sold it to my neighbor when I bought my Pazzles "Inspiration Vue", so I will be using my Vue and my Cameo and I feel like I have the best of both worlds!!!  I decided to do some comparisons between the two cutters and as you can see by my photo, you can hardly tell the difference!!!  For the comparison I wanted an intricate design, so I used one of my Sue Wilson die images, which I scanned and turned into a cut file.  The oval that I used was designed by me.  I noted the media that I used in red on the photo...and here it is!


 Y'all, at this point I want to address doing "double cuts/2 passes/cutting twice" or whatever you want to call it.  To me doing double cuts insures that I get a good smooth cut and that is what I like!!!  Here are close-ups of the "frame" test cuts I did.  For the Cameo, I set my blade at 2, Pressure at 33 and do a double cut......for the Vue I set my blade at 2, pressure at 24, speed at 3 and did 2 passes.  So, as you can see from the photos, by doing the double cuts I got good clean, crisp, smooth cuts!!!




For my next test cuts, I got even more stoked that I already was over my new Vue!!!  Look at the cuts I got using the Recollections 110# cardstock that I normally only use for my card bases...it is HEAVY cardstock like the Gina K Pure Luxury 120# and look at how intricate these cuts are!!!  The black rose overly (from the Pazzles Craft Room) is only 5.25", which gives you an idea of how small the "congrats" is!!!  All of the black cuts were done on the 110# and the blue "congrats" was cut on 65#.  I am SO impressed...........now Michael's needs to stock some more colors of the 110# as right now they only have it in White, Ivory and Black!!!


I ran another test cut last night for a friend who has some Tina Fitch's files and wanted to see how the Vue handled them.  The pink cuts are on 65# Recollections and the black cuts are on 110# Recollections..............did fantastic!!!


So, my final verdict of the Pazzles "Inspiration Vue" is that it is a fantastic cutter and I would highly recommend it.  I will add, if you ONLY cut the thinner media, like the 65# cardstock. then the Silhouette Cameo will do the job...........but why not go for the Vue and be able to cut all of the different media!!!  I have not tested any of it yet, but I will in the near future and as I do I will post the results here on my blog!

Now, for the free file of the Garden Trellis cut file that I made and used on my last card project.


You can find the free download here and I've included the following formats, so I hope this covers everyone:

.jpd, .pvg, .studio, .studio3, svg & wpc

Enjoy and thank you for stopping by..............check back real soon because there is more to come, including more free cut files!!!


Tuesday, January 20, 2015

"Pensant à vous" card.....

which in French means "thinking of you".  Now, I know you are wondering why I did it in French.  I did it for a "Ways to Use It" challenge (WT514) over at Splitcoast called ~Speaking "Foreign"~ and it is also for the "Try a New Technique" challenge (TLC516) called ~White Out~ (which is to represent our cold, "white out" winter weather).  I actually made this card to send to a very special friend and the challenges actually gave me the inspiration I needed to design it!  So here is my photo of the card front.


As you can see, I did it all in white to represent winter time...even though here in FL it is definitely not "white out"...LOL  But, it is somewhere!!!  I just got my new Pazzles Vue on the 9th and this is the first project I've done using it.  I will have an entire separate post just reviewing the Pazzle Vue coming up real soon...so be sure to check back!  I found an image of a garden trellis online and turned it into a cutting file...I used the Recollections 110 lb. cardstock and my Vue cut it like it was butter!!!  The tree, seagulls, cat, bird, garden trellis and sentiment were all cut with my Vue or my Cameo.  I used the "Seriously Delerious" font to design the cut file for the sentiment and I did use white embossing powder and my heat gun to emboss the sentiment.  I used some white flock on the kitty and some "Clear" Wink of Stella on all the birds. The label, leafy images, and gate with fence were cut using dies.  The "bushes" in front of the fence were cut with a punch.   Here are a couple of close-up photos.



For the inside of the card, I decided to use my gate and fence die again and use the "inlaid technique".  I cut the gate and fence out of the bluish cardstock and I saved the tiny pieces of blue to do the inlay.  Then I cut it again out of the white cardstock, inlaid it and the tiny blue pieces to finish it off.  The text inside is computer generated and printed on my Canon Pixma, using the "Corinthia" font.  Here is a photo.


So, now I had to come up with an idea for the back of the card as I always add a "signature label" and since I had the blue gate and fence already cut, I decided to glue that to the back of the card and place my signature label above it....that way there was no waste!!!  Here is a photo....what do ya think of that?


So, now we are down to the envelope and I remembered a special envelope that I designed back in 2011 for another 5.5 inch square card and decided to use it for this card.  The front of the envelope is plain white...but check out the back!!!



When I did this design, I needed to use a piece of letter size card (because I don't have that particular paper in the 12x12 inch size) to cut it on my Pazzles so I had to make that top flap too short to make it fit...........so I just did a "flap extender" using another piece of card that I glue beneath the original flap and problem solved.  I used two different Martha Stewart punches to decorate both flaps!!!

This card was fun to make and I hope I captured the essence of winter and I hope my very special friend likes it!!!  Thanks for stopping by and don't forget to come back by for my review of the Pazzles Vue!!!

Finished Card Size:  6" Square
Supplies List
Papers:  Recollections 110 & 65 lb. White Cardstock & 65 lb. Colored Cardstock, Bazzill Smooth White Cardstock
Ink:  Tsukineko "VersaMarkWatermark"
Tools:  Pazzles "Vue", Silhouette "Cameo", Spellbinders "Grand Calibur", Ranger "Heat It"
Accessories:  Spellbinders "Labels Two" & "Garden Gate" dies, Memory Box "Small Olive Branch" die, Martha Stewart "Branch", "Cherish" & "Arch Lattice" Punches. "Clear" Wink Stella