Sunday, August 29, 2010

No.2 Pencils

I am definitely tired of filling out forms and picking up school supplies after this first week of school- someone stop the madness! With all the tech savvy out there, cannot we not make these forms electronic and saved year to year?! My address, my kids' names and birthdates and my spouse have not changed in all these year- must I write the same forms (x2 kids) every year??

OK, enough of my school year tirade- I'm just cranky because I must submit my life to the school calendar once again and it plays higgly-piggly with my life. The only plus is that we have great teachers this year and it appears to be shaping up well. Matthew has a fab 2nd grade teacher and he is super excited to go to school each day, so who can ask for more.

I wasn't organized enough to send first day of school treats in with him (and not clear that the middle schooler would think that appropriate!) so I am sending a "thanks for a great start" card and treat with him tomorrow.

I love this boy from the Pure Innocence digital stamp set- Heather Ellis is a wonderful illustrator! I sifted through my patterned paper stash (under the guise of reorganizing!) and found these matching prints. The card base is the new Early Espresso from Stampin' Up (a great rich brown!) with layers of River Rock and a patterned paper piece similar to Riding Hood Red stitched together. I punched binder holes in the notebook patterned paper with the spiral border punch and added a mini library clip as an accent. The lettered paper is from a paper pack called "Homeroom" purchased long ago, with some twine and a button tied around.

The digital stamp was printed on Very Vanilla Cardstock and colored with Copic markers. The lettering on the blackboard was added in Photoshop prior to printing.

The inside of the card has strips of the same patterned papers with a computer generated greeting punched out with the wide oval punch and set on a Baja Blue die cut shape.

Now everyone who has ever taken test knows that you need two No.2 pencils...

These pencils are a real treat, though! The pencil was made by scoring a 3.5"W x 4.75"H piece of So Saffron card stock at 0.5" intervals and wrapping around a tube of Rolo candies. The eraser end was made by adhering a 0.3/8" strip of Pink Pirouette and a 1/4" strip of aluminum foil with a 3/4" Pink Pirouette circle at the top. A Hershey's kiss forms the pencil point and a hand-written "No.2" finishes it off! Now that my middle schooler has seen how fabulous these are, she wants 8 for her cluster teachers!

Hope you're surviving the beginning of school!

Friday, August 27, 2010

The new white meat...

Whew! What a few weeks it has been since I last posted! We had the most amazing vacation on Cape Cod and in the Berkeshires of western MA and it's been very hard to come back, start the new school year (already!) and get back to the regular routine. My mind is still very much on vacation-lol!

This is a card I started more than a year ago with some stamps I bought from Rubbernecker and has been on the shelf half done since then. It was one of the first times I used my Copic markers and was just learning some techniques, so you won't find much shading in these images! After I colored the scene, I sponged Bordering Blue and Brocade Blue for the sea, as solid coloring with markers was too "dense". It's always good to look back on you prior work- the sponging on this piece would certainly not pass muster now!

After I finished the card, I realized I need some hungry fish to complete the joke, but by the time I got around to ordering them and they arrived, I was on to other projects. When I retured from vacation I was in clean-up mode in my craft room (a daunting task for sure!) and decided to stamp some fish and get this card done. Cutting them out was a challenge, because cutting them close would loose the bubbles and swimming lines, so I ended up cutting them out in a larger shape and sponging the background. Not sure I like the way this turned out so there is a high chance I will go back and cut them out closer and hand draw some bubbles.

This is a close-up of the crab- the combination of his sign and the facial expressions of the clam and the starfish crack me up! This is one of those cards that will likely never be sent, but will sit on my desk to amuse me when I have a bad day.

Hopefully I will be able to get into the swing of stamping again this weekend- I feel some Halloween cards coming!

Have a great Friday!

Monday, August 9, 2010

Start each day with "whee"!

This is totally how I feel this morning- "whee"! It was pretty painful to be up at 5am to get to the airport for a 7:45am flight to Boston, but now that we are on our way it feels so good to really be on vacation! A few more hours (well, more than a few-lol!) and we'll be on Cape Cod smelling the cool salt air breezes and getting ready to eat lobster-yum! Get my sand chair ready!

I've had this Pure Innocence image from MFT for some time now and haven't had a chance to ink it up yet, but this cloud paper by Cosmo Cricket inspired me (see what happens when you leave a paper pack out on your desk?!). I'm not very good at making scenes, so this is my modest effort.

I started with a Kraft 5-3/4" square card base and layered on a 5-5/8" square of Very Vanilla. I added the sky and grassy green papers, with extra layers of green strips hand cut with fringe to make it look more like grass. I fashioned a fence out of a strip of Very Vanilla punched with a MS edge punch- I like how that turned out actually. The tree was hand cut from tree bark paper in the Cosmo Cricket "Mr. campy" set and punched leaves from Old Olive and Pear Pizazz using an old SU punch. The girl was colored with Copics and popped up on dimensionals to make her look like she is in the air.

The inside was finished simply with a strip of the grass paper and the cute greeting- whee! I'm going to mail this from Chatham when we arrive- we'll see if my daughter notices the different mail stamp and figures out we're nearby:)

Probably not too many cards from me for the next week or so, but hopefully lots of pretty pictures from the Cape!

Hope your day has some "whee" in it!

Saturday, August 7, 2010

Have a windy day!

Happy Saturday Everyone! Boy was I glad to roll over and "sleep in" until 7:30am this morning, leisurely drink my coffee, then do some shopping at the Galleria (a place so fabulous that it cannot be referred to as a "mall"!).

We heard from our daughter Emily by snail mail and she appears to be having a very good time, has a "BFF" for a tentmate (yay!) and loves the water and wind- all good news! I have slacked a little in my quest to mail a card every day so last night I sat down with my glass of wine, or two:), and made this card.

I have to confess up front that there was no stamping involved in this card- shockers, I know! I found this cute border in the Cosmo Cricket "Mr. Campy" pack, which was perfect because her camp is on a huge lake in the middle of the Cape. The card started with an Early Espresso 3.5"x 6.5"base, onto which I layered Very Vanilla and the plaid patterned paper from the "Mr. Campy" set. I hand drw the sail boat with a Copic multiliner pen, colored in the boat, and cut out some of the patterned paper for a spinaker sail. The final touch is the sail numbers which is her birthday!

I used Photoshop to create a custom greeting using SU colors in my color palette and a SU font. S imple little border of the patterned paper finishes it off.

Hope you're having a great weekend- I am off the pack for our trip to the Cape. I can't wait for cooler weather, the beach and great New England food!

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

'Smore Fun!

Hi Everyone- happy Hump Day! I now have 1 on-call night and 3 work days between me and vacation!!! Can you tell I'm looking forward to the break?!

I woke up extra early this morning (husband banging around in kitchen at 5:30am...) so I decided to work on a card for Emily who is at Girl Scout camp on the Cape for the next two weeks. I had my heart set on using the 'smore image from the "Under the Stars" set, but was at a loss for the rest of the card. Mojo Monday sketch to the rescue!

I always talk about how great it is to start with a sketch, and even better to start with a great sketch- this one's a keeper! The other fabulous thing about sketches is that they can be turned, amended or just used as a jumping off place to get your Mojo started.

I dug through my card stock stash and found the Cosmo Cricket "Mr. Campy" set I bought a year or two ago and have been saving (i.e. hoarding)- perfect for a camp themed card!

I started with a Kraft card base and added a layer of Early Espresso behind the card for contrast. I hand cut a wave in the leaf print patterned paper, adhered it to a layer of Riding Hood Red and added some aged copper brads in the corners before layering it onto the card base with dimensional dots. The red dot and tree bark paper were cut and corners rounded per the sketch with two changes: I reversed the sketch so the best part of the leaves would show and I ran the ribbon under both top layers so the tree bark would show. I also added a computer generated greeting with a button that wasn't in the original sketch because it seemed too bare without one.

Now for the best part- the 'smores! The 'smores were stamped in Memento Rich Cocoa on Very Vanilla card stock, punched out with a 2" circle punch and colored with Copics. I added a second layer of cracker top popped up on dimensionals to give it some depth. The marshmallows were filled in with cream colored Liquid Applique and heated with a heat tool to make it puff up- so yummy in real life!

I used another strip of the leafy print paper for the inside- leaving just enough room for a note! I love the way this card turned out- hopefully my daughter and her friends think it's as cool as I do-lol!

I'm off to get this into the mail before the postal person picks up- have a great day!


Stamp: Under the Stars (SU)
Paper: Stampin' Up- Early Espresso, Kraft, Very Vanilla, Riding Hood Red; Cosmo Cricket- "Mr. Campy"
Ink: Memento Rich Cocoa
Accessories: corner rounder, 2" circle punch, Sizzix Big Shot, nested scallop circle die, button, hemp twine, liquid applique, striped ribbon, aged copper brads 

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Thank you swap...

One of the things I love about going to scrapbook camps and stamp events is that people often bring pages and cards to swap with each other- kind of like SWAPs at Girl Scout camp! I received this as a card front (flat like a postcard) at a Stampin' Up Regional conference several years back. It had lain in a drawer since then until I was on a cleaning binge a few weeks back (looking at my craft room right now would make it hard to imagine that such a cleaning binge ever happened-lol!).

I decided to use this card front to make a whole card so I could send it out (and hence get it out of my craft room!). It definitely needed a bit of sprucing up to look like one of my cards so I used a scallop edge punch and some buttons to add interest to the bottom edge and fill in the blank spaee on the bottom left. I mounted the card front to a Whisper White card, then to a flat 5-5/8x 4-3/8" Chocolate Chip piece to give it a bit more heft and still get it into a standard size envelope!

All in all, a quick fix for a card front I would have gotten rid of- it's kind of like the show "Trash to Treasure"- a few additions and modifications and it's ready to go out!

Thanks for stopping by- hopefully another card tomorrow for the little camper!

Monday, August 2, 2010

Camp mail...

Just a quick post to share a card I made this morning to go into my daughter's box that I am mailing off to camp for her. She was a bit more nervous than I expected at the outset of her journey to the Cape for summer camp, but hopefully she is adjusting well now that she is there. I think the biggest shock for her will be the water temperature on the north shore of the Cape compared to Texas waters-yikes!

This Stampin' Up set "Under the Stars" is perfect for sending camp cards! I started with a piece of Soft Sky card stock (retired color) and added some grass cut using a Sizzix die out of Garden Green card stock. After the grass was adhered, I ran the piece through my Sizzix again using a nested die to create the background. My bear was stamped in Memento Rick Cocoa, colored with alcohol markers and popped up on dimensional dots. I added a can of the "Skeeter spray",  mosquito and cloud to complete the scene. Patterned papers from Cosmo Cricket's "Earth Love" seemed perfect for my little bear, and some twill and a cute little grrreeting (hahah) finish it off.

The inside was finished off simply so there is plenty of space for everyone in the family to write her a note! I'm off to pack a few more goodies into her box and get this in the mail so she'll have it by the end of the week (great mother's would have sent a box out last week for her to have at the beginning of the session, but I'm not that good!).

Have a great Monday!


Stamps: Under the Stars
Paper: Kraft, Very Vanilla, Soft Sky, Garden Green, Cosmo Cricket "Earth Love"
Ink: Garden Green, Memento Rich Cocoa
Accessories: 1-3/8" circle punch, Scallop circle punch, hemp twine, Sizzix dies: cloud, grass, Sizzix Big Shot, Crop-a-dile