Simple Sponging for Hint of Color

The The Card Concept #168 “Love is in the Air” had the prettiest inspiration picture for this challenge! The white wall reminded me of an embossed background, and I really liked the soft, pastel pink, mixed with a brighter pink and green. Within a few minutes, this card came together with the Bouquet of Love Hydrid Embossing folder embossed on Shimmer White card stock, lightly sponged inks, and the Love & Happiness stamp set for the sentiment. The sponged inks are Petal Pink (soft, pastel pink), Polished Pink (brighter pink), and Garden Green. The sentiment is stamped in Polished Pink and punched out with the Ovals punch. The embossed & sponged Shimmer White piece is mounted on Petal Pink card stock, then glued to a white 5.5 x 4.25 in. card from Thick White card stock.

I kept the sponging very light and random in order to not lose the white space. The inspiration photo had a lot of light and white space to it, which really drew me to the image. I wanted the card to have “hints” of color in order to stay light and airy.

All products Stampin’ Up!.

Rare Finds

Just Us Girls Challenge #618 has “Friends” for the word challenge this time. As I was scrolling through the projects the design team posted, I remembered I had purchased the Flowering Cactus stamp set for the “You are a rare find my dear friend” sentiment. I am fortunate enough to have a few friends in mind for that stamp set. I dug into my retired stash and found the whole medley (rare find as I forgot I purchased the whole medley). The designer series paper and the stamp set with coordinating dies, have beautiful flowering cactus images. During one of our trips to Palm Springs, CA, I learned just how rare a flowering cactus is and just how stunningly beautiful the colorful flowers are against the desert backdrop. The Flowering Cactus Product Medley came with little felt flowers in Calypso Coral and Highland Heather (I had forgotten about those sweet little embellishments). The DSP comes as 6×6 inch pieces. With the 6×6 inch paper, I always end up with odd sized strips. So my objective was to use the odd shaped strips for these cards. The tiny scalloped rectangles for the sentiments are dies from the Stitched So Sweetly die set. I had totally forgot about those rectangle dies (another rare find), as I always use the other images in the die set.

The die cut cactus is a stamped image that I inked in Pear Pizzazz and dipped the edges of the stamp into the Mossy Meadow ink pad to get the darker green ink on it. You could also sponge the darker color on the stamp prior to stamping on white paper.
The die cut cactus was first inked with Mint Macaron and then the edges dipped in the Pear Pizzazz ink pad for the darker effect on the edges.
The cactus images for this card are cut out with the dies from the designer series paper.

Sparkle Rainbows

Make believe world full of rainbows and sparkles, yes please! Playing with the Rainbow of Happiness Bundle and the Ombré Speciality paper has helped me forget about rain that will turn to snow mixture that is blanketing Michigan right now. The Paper Players Tic-Tac-Toe challenge got me inspired to break out the rainbows from the Stampin’ Up Mini Catalog. The Red, Yellow, Purple, and Pink layers of the rainbow were die cut from Ombré Speciality paper. The Ombré Speciality paper has a nice amount of sparkle to it, the photo really doesn’t do it justice! The glimmer paper “clouds” were punched from some retired SU glimmer paper with a SU retired label punch. The sentiment is from Shaded Summer and die cut with a die from Stitched so Sweetly dies.

Used top row of rainbow-sparkle-die cut.
The very popular Rainbow of Happiness bundle is currently unavailable.

Embossing fun with Scraps

Is your scrap bin overflowing? Do you feel the need to use every piece of that cardstock that you can? Do you dream and search for ways to use up all those straight pieces trimmed away from your perfect 5.5 x 4.25 inch card bases?? YES! Well, I have a quick and easy technique for you! After making my holiday cards, I feel like I am drowning in straight pieces of card stock that are just to small for any sentiment I have. I like to glue those babies to any 5.25 x 4 inch piece of card stock and run through my Stampin’ Cut & Emboss/Big Shot machine with an embossing folder! Be sure to trim the white pieces so they are even with your card stock base before embossing. I attach the white strips with glue. You can use tape, that works just fine. If you use glue, make sure the glue is very dry (set aside for a few days) before embossing or else you could have a gluey mess!

Seize the Birthday #230 Embossing challenge had me looking at my embossing folders for these cards! I do not use my embossing folders enough, so this was a great challenge!

New Stampin’ Up! Products are coming!

EEEEEKKKKKK! The new Stampin’ Up! Jan-June Mini Catalog is coming!! With a Sale-a-Bration event Jan-Feb 2022! The SU! OnStage event was this weekend and we made (3) cards together (virtually, of course) with the Heart & Home DSP and Blessings of Home stamp set/Flowers of Home dies. These products are all available in Jan 2022, but I could purchase them early as a demonstrator so I could make cards during the OnStage event. My cards posted here are CAS(E)-d from the examples Shannon West made during the event. The first one is almost the same, using sponges to lightly color in the flower die cut. The second one is a little different with different dsp and the pieces cut smaller and not overlapping as much as the examples. This is not a suite I would have purchased, but I really enjoyed it. I haven’t finished the third card yet, but will soon! I would never have thought that stamping virtually would be fun, but it really was.

Beautiful Zinnias

Alphabet Challenge Blog has a fun challenge that really inspired me, “O” for Outdoors. I was able to grow Zinnias from seeds this summer and this card is pretty much what our garden looked like! I really enjoyed our outside space this summer with the pops of colors from the zinnias! The paper is an Ombre Glimmer paper which reminded me of a bright, blue summer sky. I colored the flowers with SU! Blends Polished Pink and Pumpkin pie. The green is Old Olive, the stems and leaves with the flowers were colored with the Blends. The few loose leaves were stamped and then sponged with Old Olive.

Purple Posy Zinnias

Happy Halloween!

Now that it is a little cooler out, I have been able to get in the mood for a few Halloween cards! This card is not the most complicated, but the little border with the hats and brooms was complicated! For me, anyway! The Festive & Bright Bundle SU! (Stamps and coordinating dies) is so cute! I had a little bit of a learning curve with the dies to cut out the hat & broom die cut. Entering this card in the SUO Challenges #286 Happy Halloween and Sweet Stampin Challenge Blog All Hallow’s Eve . I colored the hats with Blackberry Bliss, Black, and Cherry Cobbler blends. The black card stock is embossed with the Subtle SU! Embossing folder.

Fall Feels

This weekend it is finally FALL here in Michigan! Cooler weather, burgundy/orange/yellow falling leaves, and even some drizzly soft rain, all make it finally feel like fall is here. I love the smell of the falling leaves and the colors this time of year are a feast for my eyes! I hadn’t felt like trying out my new Gorgeous Leaves stamp set with all the warm weather we have had. But finally, this weekend I was feeling it! The Less is More challenge #454 One Layer Card-Autumnal and CAS on Friday-Autumn or Halloween challenges both provided inspiration for me. I haven’t really played much with the new Blending Brushes, so I was really giving them a go with this card design. I used Pool Party and a little bit of Misty Moonlight for the blue background. The blending with the brushes is quite smooth and forgiving, but I still need to master my technique with them. The leaves I stamped in one color and then did the “rock and roll” technique to get just a little bit of a darker color from the stamp pad on the edges of the stamp. The large leaf is Cajun Craze which was then rolled in Blackberry Bliss. The green leaf is Garden Green which was then rolled in Evening Evergreen. The smallest leaf is Pumpkin Pie which was then rolled in Cherry Cobbler.

Each leaf ends up being unique!
I liked the leaves on this card the best but I had inky fingers leaving splotches everywhere! So I had to go over the whole card with Pool Party on the Blending Brush to cover up my inky finger marks!

Stuck on Sunflowers

I have been stuck on sunflowers recently! They are on my mind as I just cleaned up the last of the ones that were done blooming. The Flower Challenge active challenge is a birthday card with a shape. I can’t unsee the sunflowers as circles (my new favorite layout thank you to Freshly Made Sketches challenge #505). I was determined to use my blends more as I haven’t really played with them. I used the light & dark of Cajun Craze, Mango Melody, and Cinnamon Cider. I had some random sheets of SU! retired designer series paper to use up. I’m not sure on the exact colors of it, but it matched fine with a Night of Navy card base. I used the Celebrate Sunflowers stamp set and coordinating dies. “Hello” sentiment is from Beauty of Friendship stamp set. I found a random stamp sentiment on my desk (after cleaning up a bunch of paper scraps!) and I have no idea to what SU! Stamp set it belongs with. It was absolutely perfect for this card, being a smaller “Happy Birthday!” Sentiment. I cut the “Hello” and “Happy Birthday!” with a small die from the Seasonal Labels Dies.

Sunflower Beauty

I was so bummed out when I went to order the Stampin’ Up! Blackberry Beauty suite and it was unavailable. I was only able to order the designer series paper as the Beauty of Tomorrow stamp set & dies were on back order. The paper is simply stunning with the gold foil running through it, so I was very excited with that. And to be fair, the designer series paper really is my favorite anyway. I’m sure I can order the stamp set & dies soon anyway. I really like to CAS(E) the catalog, so I was having a hard time using the paper without the stamp set. Looking for inspiration from card challenges, I saw the sketch challenge at Freshly Made Sketches #505 and I saw sunflowers from the Celebrate Sunflowers stamp set (SU!) for the circles. As the wheels turned, I saw dark reddish sunflowers, at first thinking of Merry Merlot (I grew sunflowers that color this year). I wasn’t finding any Merry Merlot dsp that was striking my fancy for the background. I had an ah-ha moment when I came across the Blackberry Beauty dsp with Rich Razzleberry and Blackberry Bliss colors. Not sure I have seen purple sunflowers yet, but I’m sure they will be available someday soon if they aren’t already! The flower petals are colored with Blackberry Bliss and Rich Razzleberry blends. The leaves I colored with Mossy Meadow blends, the seeds in the middle are Cinnamon Cider. I stamped the flower outlines in Early Expresso. The card base is Rich Razzleberry. Now I’m on the hunt for purple sunflower seeds for next summer!

In the 1st & 2nd cards, I cut a circle out of the designer series paper that would be covered by the large sunflowers. I had two beautiful dsp circles to then use on a third card!