Tuesday, August 8, 2017

Looking Gorjuss in Lavender and Blue


I was reminded of how much I love these Gorjuss Girl stamps when I spotted a display of them at a stamping convention a couple of weeks ago and had to fight off an enthusiastic mob of ladies to buy the ones I wanted. After risking life and limb, I came home and discovered I had purchased one I already have!!! Oh well, we all  know how that goes.  I managed to buy some really cute new ones though, and I can't wait to start coloring.

While searching through my Gorguss images, I found this little girl that I had already colored and couldn't resist creating a quick card.  Lavender and blue is one of my favorite color combos and it was easy to find matching paper and embellies. I layered a Spellbinders die frame with a Lawn Fawn pierced oval die frame and attached my fussy cut image. My coordinating background paper is layered with a black striped panel and edged with a purple peel off sticker border. I also added purple peel off gem flowers to my little lady's hair, and the centers of the border flowers. (I found lots of colored Starform peel off stickers at the convention and now I'm obsessed with them.  I think eventually it might pass, but I do love them.)  I added a paper rose to the center my focal flower to make it fuller.  A little drop of stickles added to my flower with a paint brush was the final touch. Is a card really finished if it doesn't have a touch of glitter for punctuation... like a sentence?  Not in my world.

Thanks for visiting.
Go forth and be fabulous.
Nancy 

Playing along with these challenges:
        Just Add Ink
        Sketch Saturday
        Crafty Creations
        Scrapy Land



Friday, August 4, 2017

Riley Blake Rag Lap Quilt - Embroidered Heart Detail



A beautiful pieced embroidered heart in the corner of this lap quilt is one way I can subtly tell my recipient I love her.  This machine embroidered heart is an Anita Goodesign design and I have "signed" several of my quilts this way.  One half of the heart is applique and the other half is a beautiful filigree pattern. I like the fact that the applique blends right into my quilt..

 

If I had to choose a fabric line that I'm drawn to the most, it would have to be Riley Blake Designs.  Her bright, whimsical designs always catch my eye.


"Quilt-as-you-go" rag quilts are simple and sew up so easily, they are my first choice for quick gifts.  But lately I'm getting in the mood to do some more detailed piecing with my ever growing stash. I'm excited to embark on an anniversary trip Scandinavia soon and I'm sure I will come home inspired to do some cozy, winter quilting. 

Thanks for visiting.
Go forth and be fabulous.
Nancy

Monday, July 31, 2017

Laurel Burch Mermaid Side Step Card - Have a Magical Day.

I can't help being a little obsessed with coloring these fabulous Stampendous Laurel Burch stamps with my copics. They're so coloricious!  I couldn't wait to work on this beautiful mermaid stamp set and I decided it would be perfect for my daughter's birthday next month. Aren't we all a little fascinated with magical creatures like mermaids and unicorns?  I think my 30-something daughter will love it!

I used the bright Stampendous Laurel Burch copic pallet and added some gold glitter paper and Starform glitter stickers for accents to make my sea lady sparkle.  To my amazement, I created the side step file by myself in Cricut Design Studio.  My brain almost exploded but I finally got it right and now I can use the file to make other side step cards in a snap.  I even figured out how to size the insert pieces (with a lot of trial and error). It's not hard...it just takes a little perseverance.   The finished card measures 5" x 7".  The sun, cloud and waves are from the Cricut image library. I love that I can just type in "sun" or "waves" in the search bar and I get to choose from tons of images.  Since I have been a Cricut geek for many years I already have many purchased cartridges loaded in the library and with my added monthly subscription, I rarely have to buy an image.  The stamped greeting is one I found in my stash.  

I had the best time creating this ocean scene on my Cricut for my sparkly mermaid.  And as for having a magical day, as my sentiment suggests, I'd say most of the days I spend in my craft room are magical...even if it's just enjoying the miracle of a card turning out the way I would like it to. We crafters are blessed that way!

Thanks for visiting.
Go forth and be fabulous.
Nancy.

Playing along with:
        Cupcake Inspirations
        Crafty Gals Corner
        Dare 2 B Artsy
        
        Creative with Stamps

Thursday, July 20, 2017

Stampendous Laurel Burch Doggies - So Glad We're Friends!


  

What could be more fun than coloring these beautiful Laurel Burch images from Stampendous!  I think these doggies are absolutely adorable. There are several in the set and I had the best time auditioning the ones I wanted to stack for my focal image.  It was hard to pick just two but that's all I could fit.

Stampendous has published this helpful copic chart to help with the bright Laurel Burch pallet.  I must say,  the colors aren't the ones I would have picked right away, but they really work for the Laurel Burch look.   For the base of this card I used the Lori Whitlock center step SVG file and sized it as large as I could in Cricut Design Studio.   It measures about 5 1/2" by 5 1/2".  The layering panels are included in the file so it was very easy to cut the card stock pieces to fit  my background.. The sun is from the Cricut image library, sized to fit my center panel.   Gotta love Cricut Design Studio!!!  The grass is a die cut I had in my stash and the sparkly embellies are Starform Stickers.  I love using these stickers because they look like gems but they don't add bulk to my card for mailing. The cute butterfly is from the Laurel Burch cat set.


I'm going to make a few of these for my equally adorable and  colorful besties.

Thanks for visiting.
Go forth and be fabulous.
Nancy

Playing along with:
        Through the Craft Room Door
        The Sisterhood of Crafters (I'm from sunny California)
        Time Out Challenges
        Addicted to Stamps
        The Crafty Addicts
        Color Throwdown

Wednesday, July 12, 2017

Sunny Rubber Ducky Rag Quilt - Baby Gift Set


I went treasure hunting in my fabric stash and discovered some super cute rubber ducky print flannel that I just knew would make the perfect snugly rag quilt for my friend's new baby boy.  I also unearthed some bright sunshine prints in coordinating colors.  Don't you love shopping in your own fabric hoard?




It only takes a couple of yards of designer fabric to sew up a rag quilt, especially if you back it with some solid flannel.



I already had some cute ducky peel off stickers from Elizabeth Craft in my stash, so I put them on some double stick tape, sprinkled on some microfine glitter and painted the adorable ducky with my copic markers.  You can see how I did it here.  I attached my image to an embellished flip card cut from a Sizzix die.  




Here's my fun gift all ready to wrap in a pretty bag. I think my duckies will make my new darling baby friend giggle. And I found almost all my materials in my own craft room. I'm going to have to shop there more often.

Thanks for visiting.
Go forth and be fabulous.
Nancy

Monday, July 10, 2017

Penny Black Poetic Portraits Stamps - Copic Coloring


Coloring these beautiful Penny Black Poetic Portrait images with my copic markers takes me back to the days when I spent hours with my sweet friend, Pamela, drawing paper dolls and coloring them with crayons. We made dresses for them with tabs that bent over their shoulders to hold them in place and played with them for hours. Anybody else remember this?  I also loved drawing and coloring pretty faces. I still do it sometimes.  Maybe that's why I love make up so much.  

I'm absolutely in love with these gorgeous Penny Black images because they are already beautifully drawn for me and all I have to do is make them come alive.  I stamp them in Memento London Fog ink which softens the edges when I color them. They are simpler to color than they look, although the shading takes a little practice. On this image, to my great dismay, my copic marker dropped a big drop of blue ink onto my pretty lady's neck after I had almost finished coloring her. I know...disastrous! But it turned out to be a happy accident, as is often the case.  I was able to cover it up with some pretty flowers and a beautiful butterfly.  I die cut a Spellbinders frame in white to showcase my image and let my lady peak through from the back to show her flowing hair.  

I love these Penny Black images so much.  There are several and I have them all!  They have become my favorite thing to color. 

Thanks for visiting.
Go forth and be fabulous.
Nancy

Playing along with:
        Penny Black Saturday Challenge       
        Brown Sugar Challenge        
        Stamping Sensations
       

Friday, June 23, 2017

Lori Whitlock Lemonade Glass Shaped Card - Wishing you a day full of sunshine


Summer's here and I'm in the mood for some bright sunny colors and  a tall frosty glass of lemonade. My friends are located all over the country, but the one thing we all seem to have in common lately is the HEAT!!!  It's 107 degrees here in sunny California and rising  What better time to take to my air conditioned craft room and create some snail mail full of lemonade-y goodness.


I admit, I'm obsessed with shaped cards.  I cut this adorable lemonade glass card on my Cricut with a Lori Whitlock SVG file. I like to change my cut files to make my cards as large as I can...this one is about 5 x 7 inches.  I couldn't help casing this sweet card from the Lori Whitlock website (circa 2015). The sequin bubbles are such a cute added sparkly touch.  I found the fun fruit stamps with matching dies in my stash and couldn't find a company for them.  Sorry I can't enable you with more info.

Off to send some handmade sunshine to my friends.

Thanks for vising.
Go forth and be fabulous.
Nancy

Playing along with:
        Simply Create Too
        Word Art Wednesday
        Curtain Call
        Dragonfly Journeys
        My Time to Craft
        Creative With Stamps

Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Anita Goodesign Tropical Quilt - Another Embroidered Block Update


Oh, what fun I'm having machine embroidering appliqued blocks for my tropical quilt. Check out some of the blocks I've already finished in my earlier tropical quilt and tropical quilt 2 blog posts. I've completed nine blocks so far...only four more to go!  I can't wait to start piecing and get this ship sailing.


Then comes the hardest part for me, choosing the shashing and border fabrics.  Help!!! I'm thinking of a light blue fabric with some texture that looks like waves or water. Or maybe a very subdued tropical tone on tone. Or plain, so it won't compete with my bright colored blocks?  I have too many choices in my stash.  I love striped borders, but I'm not sure how stripes will look with a tropical quilt.  Maybe like a striped beach umbrella! That would be cool.


I won't know exactly what my design will be until I get all the blocks done and organize them to see what shape and size my quilt will be.  It's like arranging puzzle pieces.. I'm praying that they'll all fit together perfectly.


I guess part of the excitement is seeing where the process takes me. Speak to me, quilt! 

Thanks for visiting.
Go forth and be fabulous.
Nancy

Wednesday, June 14, 2017

Stamping Bella Birthday - Shaker Card Drama


                                        

The minute I saw this cute happy birthday die I knew it would make the perfect shaker card for my friend's birthday. For this card I colored my Stamping Bella image with copics, die cut my Spellbinders border and created my shaker card element...easy peasy.  But it didn't start out that way....


This was my first attempt.   How hard could it be? I've made shaker cards before. I had already water colored the peonies from Altenew's Peony Bouquet stamp set and they were the perfect colors for the Splitcoaststampers Tuesday color challenge.   I often struggle with layouts, but usually things fall together in the end. In this case, I think my  peonies just didn't want to live on this card.  Those gray looking elements are actually silver and I don't hate them.  The most frustrating part of this card was the shaker doohickey!  Apparently I'm not patient enough to let glue dry and my sequins like swimming in it.  I was glad when this card was finally finished and, happily, when I woke up this morning I was ready to give it another try.  My husband likes this one best.  I like the Stamping Bella one way better. What do you think?

Thanks for visiting.
Go forth and be fabulous.
Nancy

Playing along with:
   
         Word Art Wednesday
         Glitter and Sparkle
         Addicted to Stamps
         Crafty Creations
         The Paper Shelter
         The Crafty Addicts

Saturday, June 10, 2017

Cheery Rag Quilt and Card - For My Sweet Friend's Little One


These fun rag quilts are my answer to being machine quilting-challenged.  I can just sew as I go and end up with a soft, fluffy finished quilt - no top quilting necessary. Babies seem to be fascinated with the texture of these quilts and, happily, they get fluffier the more they are washed. (Both the babies and the quilts.😄)



I bought these adorable bright cotton charm squares in a kit at my fabric store a while ago and decided they would make a perfect quilt for my friend and her little baby girl.  I linked directions for this quilt in an earlier post here.


I used premium quilting cotton for the bottom and top layers on my blocks and white cotton flannel for the batting.  This produces beautiful fraying on the finished quilt. These vibrant colors and dainty prints are delightfully girly and  the juvenile patterns are adorable.


The quilt is reversible because the back is just as pretty as the front! 



I almost always make matching cards for my gifts, just because I can...and it's loads of fun trying to match colors and designs.   The card base was made from the Sizzix Framelets Die Set - Friends Forever Step Ups.



The cute onsies were die cut with the Sizzix Triplets "Oh, Baby" die set. I've made several of these cards for friends because it's easy to adapt the onsies for a boy or girl just by changing the colors.  It would be fun to match the print on them to one of the fabrics in the quilt. I'll try that next time!

Thanks for visiting.
Go forth and be fabulous.
Nancy

Friday, June 2, 2017

Altenew Peony Bouquet Flip Cards


I adore these Tonic Studio Flip Flop die sets when I need to make something special and don't have much time.  I got a little panicky last night when I realized I needed to make two birthday cards and a sympathy card for today.  

                                         

I stamped these lavender flowers with Tim Holtz distress Ink.  The layers on these Altenew Peony Bouquet stamps are pretty easy to line up in my Misti if I just pick a few spots to concentrate on.


I'm into stripes lately, both in my quilt borders and cards.  They just seem to coordinate with everything.  This beautiful gold and white striped Stampin' Up vellum called to me from my stash.


I used two different Tonic Flip Flop dies, an oval and a rectangle.  The die cut sets include a large die to cut the flip flop card (over 5 x 7) which can be sized to different dimensions and several layering dies for the shape area. There's a sentiment die for the center, but I chose to pop up my peonies for my focal point and put my sentiment on the back.  I dug out my Marvy stamp pads from a hundred years ago and now I remember why I love them so much.  The pinks and reds stamped very evenly and I am happy with the bright, vivid colors. Good thing I have the reinkers because I think I'll be using them a lot for my layered stamps.


The little swirls around the flowers were the scraps from the die cut frame.  Glad I didn't throw them away!  I added a pretty sparkly gold bow to my side panel and some sequins to match the flowers and I'm almost done.



I use tons of die cut sentiments because I can put them anywhere on the card, even over stamped images, and I don't have to worry about ink smudges.  This "Prayers" image is from Hero Arts and it has several stamp phrases to go with it.  And, of course, I messed up stamping the "sending hugs" phrase, so I just stamped it again on another piece of paper and popped it up over my boo boo. I'm a boo boo guru. 


Thanks for visiting.
Go forth and be fabulous.
Nancy

Adding my card to these challenges:
Really Reasonable Ribbon
Make My Monday
Aurora Wings

Saturday, May 27, 2017

Anita Goodesign Tropical Quilt - Embroidered Block Update


I'm still having the best time machine embroidering the quilt blocks for my tropical quilt wall hanging. Here are three more of the twelve designs I will make for this quilt.


I love the fact that these are applique designs.  I can pick out any coordinating fabric I want to give them color and texture. 


It actually feels a little like creating a stamped card.  I get to choose my fabric and thread to make the design look exactly how I want it.  Maybe that's why I love it so much!


I used ombre fabric for these flowers. I reach for this type of fabric when I want a soft, shaded look.  I love how these turned out.

Stayed tune for more of my blocks as I finish them.

Thanks for visiting,
Go forth and be fabulous. 
Nancy

Friday, May 19, 2017

Happy Birthday - You Look Marvelous


It was a delight creating this card for my sweet friend's birthday. I colored this cute  Stamping Bella image with my copics  and I knew I had to add something girly to the inside.


I had this adorable Lori Whitlock vanity pop up in my svg files, just waiting for me to audition it.  It was fairly simple to put together and I love how it turned out.  I just love making cards that do tricks!

Thanks for visiting.
Go forth and be fabulous.
Nancy

Adding my card to Creative With Stamps Challenge


And:
     Fussy and Fancy
     Double D Challenge
     Cupcake Inspirations

Monday, May 15, 2017

Parchment Craft Card - Floral Wreath and Butterfly


I was very privileged to take several parchment craft classes at the Stamp Art Shoppe before it closed recently.  My very skilled and talented instructor was Linda Baney.  To perfect this art, it takes tons of special piercing and embossing tools, mad skills, perseverance  and a lot of patience but the results are worth the effort. Sadly, I have found that I have many more tools than any of the other attributes. However, I do love stepping out of my comfort zone every once in a while and creating a parchment craft card.  I traced this pretty floral wreath design on white parchment paper with a Pergamano pen made especially for parchment paper. Purists use an actual fountain-type pen and white ink to get the finest lines, but I like to keep things as easy as possible. Three different embossing tools were used to emboss the design.  That's the tricky part...but it's actually very enjoyable and relaxing if I can keep from punching holes in the delicate paper.  I love creating these butterflies because they look beautiful on all types of cards and they don't take long to create.  I need to get out my tools and do a whole day of parchment butterflies.  Yes, that would make me so happy!

Thanks for visiting.
Go forth and be fabulous.
Nancy    

Adding my card to these challenges:
       Unstampabelles

Thursday, May 11, 2017

Brushless Watercolor Class - Tim Holtz Distress Markers


A while ago I took an amazing class from Susan Porter, one of my favorite artists, and I'm just getting around to posting the four lovely cards we created.  The brushless watercolor technique has been around for a while and is relatively easy with beautiful results.  The background in each of these cards uses a little different technique. For this card, I used Milled Lavender and Dusty Concord distress markers to color the flowers directly onto the stamp and Peeled Paint and Forest Moss to color the leaves and stems.  After coloring the stamp, I spritzed it with water using a fine mist spray bottle and used gentle pressure to stamp the image onto watercolor paper.  I added Distress Stickles in Dusty Concord to the centers of the flowers and Peeled Paint Distress Stickles to the leaves.


The second card was stamped on Mattekote stamping paper. I colored the flowers with Picked Raspberry and Seedless Preserves distress markers, the flower centers with Scattered Straw and Wild Honey, and the leaves and stems with Peeled Paint and Forest Moss. I spritzed with a fine mist before stamping. The result was a little less textured than the watercolor paper, but just as pretty, I think. 



The third flower has a pallet painted background. I scribbled Scattered Straw onto an acrylic block and spritzed with a fine mist.  On watercolor paper, I used a large flat wet paint brush to paint the rectangular area I wanted for my flower background.  Using the same brush, I picked up the diluted Scattered Straw distress ink from my acrylic block palette and painted in my defined rectangle.  I dried this area with a heat gun and then stamped my image using the brushless watercolor technique.



My final (and favorite) card has a  resist block stamped background.  I embossed the image of the tall foliage on watercolor paper with white embossing powder.   I colored the surface of a 3" x 5" acrylic block with Shabby Shutters and Peeled Paint distress markers.  With the block facing up on my table, I spritzed with water and let the colors run together.  I carefully flipped the block over  and pressed it onto my watercolor paper. I dried it with a heat gun and then stamped my image using the brushless watercolor technique.  

I always forget how fun and easy this technique is.  Have you tried it? You absolutely should!

Thanks for visiting.
Go forth and be fabulous.
Nancy




Saturday, May 6, 2017

Anita Goodesign "Life's a Beach" Wall Hanging - More Blocks


I've been absolutely mesmerized machine embroidering these tropical applique designs for my beach wall hanging. They're so bright and sunny...they make me want to step into those flip flops and build that sand castle!  


I'm using two types of embroidery thread - the Brother thread I received as a Christmas gift when I bought my machine and Isacord, a more expensive but highly recommended thread.  The Brother is shiny and beautiful and I have it in every color, but I have to watch it very closely for breakage and "nests" (which are bunched up clumps of thread which appear on the bottom of my fabric when the top thread isn't feeding properly). The Isacord is heaven to work with! The finish is more mat, but it's strong and sews very evenly with no problems


I use Floriani No Show Mesh cutaway stabilizer because it's soft and sheer and doesn't show through my fabric.  I also fuse Heat and Bond Lite to my appliques and iron them to my fabric during the embroidery process with a small mini iron. This keeps the appliques smooth when the quilt is washed. This time I did it out of habit because this wall hanging probably won't get washed but I like to know that my appliques will stay smooth and secure.



There are a lot of steps to these applique embroidery designs and I know if I mess up, I pretty much have to start over. There's no unpicking those tight stitches!  It takes time, patience and perseverance but I think the results are worth it. I absolutely love this project.  I can't wait to pick out fabric and get started on my next blocks.  Eight more to go. I'm headed to the "beach" but I'll be back.
.

Thanks for visiting.
Go forth and be fabulous.
Nancy

Monday, May 1, 2017

Happy Birthday Cupcake - Lori Whitlock 3D


I'm over-the-top excited to join a group of amazingly talented paper crafting friends who get together a couple of times a month for card making, shared ideas and techniques, lunch and delightful comradery. We have been taking classes together at our LSS for over ten years but, sadly, it closed a few months ago. Even the buckets of money we all spent there could not save it from its internet competition.   Happily, nothing can squash the inimitable spirit of true crafters and our friendships live on. 

I made this card for the May birthday of one of our group members.  I changed the size of this Lori Whitlock Pop Dot SVG from A2 to A7 in Cricut Design Space. Then I cut the layers and popped up the middle layer only.  All it took to complete my card was a few sparkly embellishments.  I can't wait to see what birthday wishes the other ladies come up with.  It's so fun to learn and share with other obsessed...uh, I mean like- minded artists! 

Thanks for visiting.
Go forth and be fabulous.
Nancy

Adding my card to these challenges:
     CAS on Sunday
     Pile it On
     Seize the Birthday
     Unstampabelles