Thursday, August 9, 2012

Tutorial: Layers of Beauty

Hi Y'all! My little blog isn't going to know what to do with all these visitors!

Today I've got a stamping technique for you to try that provides lots of visual interest without taking too much time or effort on your part, sound interesting?

Your challenge is to create a card using the seamless tiers technique and fall colors.

The place that I learned this technique from called it seamless layers, although I have seen it go by other names as well, such as triple stamping. In short, you use multiple stamps on several layers and on each layer the images flow smoothly to the next. The trick to this technique is in lining up the images on each layer.

Here is a peek of the 'layers'

 To start out, you will cut your cardstock to have three layers. I've cut mine so that each of the layers are proportionatly smaller than the next, how you cut yours is personal preference.

Since I like to cut my cardstock all at once, I also cut the 'mat' layers at this time. Simply measure your top and middle layer, and cut your cardstock 1/8" larger by length and width.

Here is what you should end up with...

My measurements were:

     Card layer          Mat layer
     4 1/4 x 5 1/2      -----
     3 1/4 x 4 1/2      3 3/8 x 4 5/8
     2 1/4 x 3 1/2      2 3/8 x 3 5/8

Remember, these sizes are just what I used, you may make your layers any size that you want to.

This is how your layers should look when stacked together, notice how each 'mat' layer provides a small 'frame' for the layer above.

Now, stack your three card layers and use temporary adhesive to hold them together.

Its a little difficult to see, since they are all the same color, but hopefully you can get the idea.

If you are planning on using a sentiment on your card, stamp that first. Once you get going on your images, you can sometimes run out of room!

Fill your card front with images, just place the stamps on top of the layers and stamp normally.

There will be space between the layers where the image does not transfer because of the difference in height from one layer to the next. Don't worry!

We'll take care of that in the next step.

Pull apart your layers and add the mat layers to the back of the first two layers.

Now stack everything back together again, using permanent adhesive this time. This is the point to add any ribbons, embellishments, or coloring that you might want to finish off your card.

Do you see how with the addition of the narrow mat layers the eye just flows from one layer to the next? And how easy was that to line up all of your images?

I decided that this card needed very little embellishment, and just layered a single colored butterfly with foam adhesive for dimension.

I think that this technique provides a subtle elegance to the card, and can easily be used for many different occasions. This card went to my daughter from her daddy to encourage her during her Coast Guard basic training, and I whipped out several of these in May with Congratulations sentiments and stars all over for Graduation cards.

I look forward to seeing your Layers of Beauty cards with fall colors on the forum!

Thanks for stopping by,


Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Treat Yourself Cardmaking Crop Blog Hop

Hello and Welcome to my little blog!

If you've just stumbled here, keep reading, you'll figure out what is going on pretty quickly! If you are participating in the CardSwaps Treat Yourself Cardmaking Crop Blog Hop, then you are in the right place!

My favorite online hangout, Cardswaps forum is hosting an awesome crop this week. How do I know it is awesome when we have just started? Because we have rocked this party before! Trust me, you want to come on over and have fun with us!

Challenges and games will be posted August 8-11, 2012 and you have until 11:59pm EST August 14, 2012 to get your projects posted to the appropriate thread. If you haven't participated before, no worries! There are many members (including me!) that will be around to offer support and encouragement. You will be able to find out all you need to know in the forum, you can start here at the thread for new members.

At the end of this blog hop, you will be taken to the crop and I sure hope to 'see' you there! One of the games is a word scramble, collect the letters along the hop and unscramble them to be entered into the drawing for a prize for one lucky hopper! You will be given details at the bottom of this post. Don't skip ahead! Keep reading...

Alright should have arrived here from Golda's blog, if not, go back to check out her blog and collect your letter. Then come back here and hop on. If you want/need to start over, feel free to go back to Brooke at the Cardmaker Magazine blog.

The blog hop "theme" goes with the crop title of "Treat Yourself". You'll be seeing lots of different types of projects, since it was left up to each of us what to do, as long as it somehow conveys a way the hostess "treats" herself. We were also each asked to share something about a way that we unwind or treat ourselves. (Be honest, who immediately thought 'chocolate'?)

The project I created was inspired by something I found on Pinterest. (Hmm, an awful lot of my projects start that way nowadays, and that's a good thing!) Anyway, I treat myself by spending time in my craft room. I know, I know, you're thinking, "Duh, don't we all?" But let me explain...I treat myself by spending time trying out new techniques in my craft room, better?

Case in point, today's project:

Based on the pin above, which was only a picture and did not provide a link to any instructions, I turned these...

into this!

Just kidding! This might make it a little more clear!

What do you think, cute? I'm thinking that this will be a birthday card you definitely would not see a duplicate of at the party!

You can tell just by looking that it is not difficult to make, it took the longest to find 10 strait and smooth popsicle/craft sticks!

So, here are my easy instructions to make this project.

  1. Sort your craft sticks to find 10 strait and smooth ones.
  2. I did not have this, but I recommend using a line of temporary adhesive to secure your craft sticks to the work surface. It will save you some time in rearranging and straitening them after you lift each stamp and the stick comes up with it.
  3. Stamp your scene. This could be anything you want!
  4. Bundle your sticks into a pile and send them off to make someone's day!
See, I told you it was easy!

  • Craft sticks: Loew-Cornell
  • Stamps: Inkadinkado, TPC Studios & Studio G
  • Inks: Memories, Colorbox, Stampabilities & Martha Stewart
  • Ribbon: Ribbon Trends

One of my dream places to be is by the sea. It seems to me that I have always loved the water, I have no idea when that might actually have started. By some definitions, my name (Meredith) means 'royalty of the sea', so maybe my parents started me off with that! I treat myself as often as I can with trips to the seaside, although since I live in New Mexico, that is not often! So, since I am not able to be there physically, I surround myself with images and colors of the sea. One of my favorite images is one that I took of the arch at the end of Baja California while on a cruise there.

I also seem to gravitate toward seaside images while cardmaking. Here is an additional project using the craft sticks as above, only they are affixed to the card base. I feel that the sentiment on this card fits me perfectly...

In case it is difficult for you to read, it states, "The Sea, once it casts its spell, holds one in its net of wonder forever".

  • Craft Sticks: Loew-Cornell
  • Stamps: Crafty Secrets & Impression Obsession
  • Ink: Tsukineko Versafine
  • Cardstock: Wausau
  • Other: hemp twine

Unscramble It game for hoppers: You will be unscrambling a word once you collect a letter at each blog you visit. Once you collect ALL the letters, the last hostess in the blog hop will direct you to the thread in the forum where you can find all the details you need to enter the drawing. All hoppers collecting the letters, unscrambling the word or phrase, entering the game by following the directions in the forum and leaving feedback on EVERY blog in the hop WILL be entered into a random drawing held on August 15, 2012. ONE lucky hopper will have their name drawn and will win a prize! The winner will be posted in the forum on the game thread for Treat Yourself Unscramble It. So, make sure you visit every blog and find the letters.

Your hints are...its a phrase, it has three words, and its a way to keep balance in one's life.

My letter is...E

Now, be sure to hop on over to Jeanette's blog on the way to the forum to get all your letters and unscramble the phrase. Check out the challenges (I'm in charge of two!) and play some games! Its a lot of fun!!!

Here is the complete list of blogs on the hop, in case you get lost somewhere.

Brooke Smith -CardMaker blog 

Thank you for visiting!


Tutorial: Color in Your Soul


I'm glad to see you found your way over from the Cardmaker crop forum.

My challenge to you for today is to use the following coloring and embossing technique to make a tag.

Believe it or not, we're going to take our paper tags from this...

to this!

If you didn't get a chance to read the supply list on the forum here then go ahead and gather them now.

You'll need:

  • cardstock base for your tag
  • ink in several colors (I used distress inks)
  • blending tool
  • clear embossing ink
  • background stamp
  • image stamp
  • clear embossing powder
  • heat tool
  • embellishments to your liking

Start by cutting your cardstock to the size you would like your tag to be. Mine is a large one, almost three inches by six inches.

Use some lighter ink color(s) and a blending tool to color the cardstock as a background for your tag. I used two colors (yellow and green) and randomly blended them over the tag.

Using a darker ink, stamp your background stamp on the tag. Don't be afraid to stamp something other than the traditional strait background here...I angled my stamp and used it more than once, to vary the lines.

For this step you will want to line your supplies up and have them handy. Stamp your image with clear embossing ink, then cover with clear embossing powder. Shake off the excess powder. Some stampers find it handy to wipe the surface of the cardstock with a static cling eraser thingamajig to keep the embossing powder from sticking to anything other than the decide.

The fuzzy looking spots are the unmelted powder covered spots.

Use your heat tool to melt the embossing powder, I love how shiny it is!

Use a darker ink and blending tool to color over the entire tag, including coloring over the clear embossing. Don't worry, you won't ruin it!

halfway colored

all done!

Now use a paper towel or rag to wipe the excess ink off the embossing, revealing the original colors beneath the embossed image!

Finish up by embellishing the tag any way you would like to to finish it. I made a larger tag and finished it as a bookmark, since reading is often one way that I am pampering myself!

Supplies used for my tag:

  • Cardstock:(cream,gold)Recollections;(green)scrap
  • Inks:(embossing)Versamark;(colors)Ranger Distress Ink
  • Stamps:(text background)Stampabilities;(sunflowers)Local King Rubber Stamps;(sentiment)Inkadinkado
  • Embossing Powder:(clear)Recollections
  • Ribbon:(cream)Best Value Organdy Ribbon Joann's;(green)Offray;(brown polka dot)The Ribbon Boutique Hobby Lobby
  • Punch:(vintage label)McGill

I look forward to seeing your creations on the forum board here and if you have any questions, please do not hesitate to ask!