Tuesday, December 30, 2014


Since I survived through the Christmas season, I decided to attempt to make cards again.  I started with the idea to make cards for the friends who sent me Christmas cards.  I didn't send any at all this year.  I found and embossing folder in my stash and a stamp set that had never been used.
My first step was to brayer ink for multicolor Kaleidacolor ink pads onto the inside of and embossing folder and place white cardstock in the folder and emboss and transfer the ink for a background.  This is the results from my efforts.
After washing all the ink from my brayer, embossing folder and hands, I pulled out my stamp set.
My first attempt at stamping the sentiment made a big mess on the cardstock because the excess rubber hadn't been trimmed from the stamps.  I proceeded to remove rubber from the wood mount by placing stamps in microwave a few seconds to loosen the adhesive.  I then trimmed off the excess rubber.  Next, I added double stick tape to an acrylic block and arranged the sentiments on the sticky surface and stamped my sentiments.

My next step was to create a card using some of the created card parts.
I hope to soon create more cards from this mess I have created.

Thursday, December 25, 2014

Merry Christmas!

Merry Christmas to all.  This holiday means much more to most people, but to my little dog it means new toys under the tree.

Friday, December 5, 2014

Lighthouse birthday card

I'm finally getting healed from my cataract surgery and my fall.  I'm still waiting for my new prescription glasses, which should improve my reading ability.  I appreciate all the prayers and good thoughts during my recovery.

I've been wanting to get back into card making, but just haven't had the urgency until now.  My bother is celebrating his 93rd birthday soon and I made this card for him.  He lives near the Washington coast.
I stamped this image by Peddler's Pack in Memories Soft Silver ink onto watercolor paper.  I colored the image with Ranger Distress Inks - barn door, salty ocean & mowed lawn, with water added.  The background paper is from My Mind's Eye.  I added the brown cardstock as a frame and used a PTI Soft Stone cardstock for a base card.

Saturday, November 8, 2014

Growing older, not so gracefully

My blog hasn't been very active because of lots of health problems.  About a month ago, I developed a severe light sensitivity.  The computer screen was especially difficult.  I have to wear sunglasses in the house and especially when using computer.  I've spent a lot of time with my eye doctor.  He has done thorough exams and tried eye drops.  The current plan is to do cataract surgery next week.  I didn't realize that cataracts created glare.  I hope this helps my problem.

To complicate things, I tripped over my dog while taking out the trash.  I was pretty lucky and only got some bruising.  Unfortunately, my worst injury was my right hand.  Lots of ice and elevating it, along with being checked by 2 doctors, and I'm feeling better.  The swelling has gone down enough to type.

During all this time, I did work on making a card.  This is what I came up with.
This is a very old unmounted stamp that I found in one of my stamp drawers.  I created the round TUIT with stickers on a punched circle.  I'll probably mail this to one of the lovely ladies that have remembered me with their nice cards to try to stimulate my mojo.

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Winter Wishes

I'm still struggling with mojo and vision.  My friends have been trying to stimulate my mojo by giving me new toys.  This card uses things from 2 good friends.
This gorgeous blue paper just begged me for some snowflakes.  I pulled out a set of Hero Arts stamps and dies that were given to me by a good friend.  I stamped the snowflakes and embossed with silver embossing powder, then cut them out with matching dies.  The sentiment was given to me by the same friend that gave me the blue paper.  This is mounted on silver cardstock and then onto a white base card.

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Happy Birthday!

I haven't been making many cards lately because of some vision problems.  I have seen the doctor and have some eye drops to try to help my problem.  I'll see the doctor again in a few days to see if this helped.

I did manage to make a birthday card for a good friend whose birthday was yesterday.
I used an embossing folder for the dots and sentiment.  The background color is from inking the inside of embossing folder.  It looked a bit plain to me so I spritzed it with a combo of water and Perfect Pearls.  It created a blotchy look with a bit of gold shimmer.

The image is actually a sample from a convention years ago.  It's an acrylic square colored on the back with sparkly embossing powder on the edges.  This was card was hand delivered yesterday to a good friend.

Friday, October 3, 2014

Thanksgiving card

Life keeps getting in the way of card making.  We've had a lot of rain in the desert during monsoon season.  That resulted in a need for a lot of yard work.  In addition, my little dog developed some lumps on his skin and had to gave surgery to remove them.  This has kept me pretty busy lately.

I'm trying to include some time to make my personal Thanksgiving cards.  After several days of trial and error, I came up with this card.
I used a brayer to add ink from a Kaleidacolor ink pad to the inside of an embossing folder and then embossed some cream cardstock.  I used the same ink pad to stamp the sentiment.  The edger punch is by Martha Stewart.  The copper skeleton leaves have been in my stash for many years.  Adhering them to the card has always been a problem for me.   I just learned about and purchased a small bottle of Ranger Multi Medium Matte.  This liquid glue seems to hold both the leaves and the twine bow to the card without showing.

As I finish my yard work, I'll try to work on this design and make the rest of my cards before mailing time.

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Land of the Free

I recently purchased a stamp set from Simon Says Stamp called Brave.   It is a fundraiser for Operation Write Home.  It has some very nice sentiments, but I decided to use the image with sentiment.  It's a very solid stamp and I find them difficult to ink evenly.  I used a brayer with Kaleidacolor ink pad to ink the stamp.  Each image got stronger, but the early ones were a bit blotchy.
This was my first card.  I cut the image with a Spellbinders long oval die and framed it in red.  The background is embossed with a Cuttlebug embossing folder that had ink applied to one side.  This card seemed a bit plain to me, so I embellished the second card with 4 stars.
I added Glossy Accents to the stars and popped the oval image on foam tape.  I have 2 more stamped images to play with so I'm open to suggestions.

Saturday, September 13, 2014

OWH ODBD Challenge - September

The Operation Write Home challenge this month for the Our Daily Bread Designs is to create our own background, instead of using patterned paper.  I have done this many times, but was looking for some new ideas to try.  I found this idea on Facebook and decided to try it out.
I used a Cuttlebug embossing folder for this.  The first step is the prepare a piece of cardstock and have it ready.  Then, use a brayer to add ink to both inside parts of the embossing folder.  I used Kaleidacolor Autumn Leaves pad.  Immediately place the prepared cardstock inside the folder and run it though my Big Shot.  You could used any die cutting machine for this.

As the paper is embossed, the color is transferred to both sides.  I then cut the embossed paper into 2 pieces and turn one piece over to expose the debossed side.  Then adhere both pieces to the dark brown layer and adhere this to the base card.  I added a stamped greeting after card was finished.
On this card, I only used the embossed side of the folder because of the writing.  I could added more to it, but decided to allow this to stand alone.

Friday, September 12, 2014

Hedgehog anniversary

I've been making personal cards and didn't want to post them until they are in the hands of the recipient.  This is an anniversary card I made for a very special couple in my life.
The hedgehogs are an old stamp by Penny Black.  I stamped and embossed on watercolor paper, then added color with my Peerless watercolors.  The sentiment is from Art Impressions, with hearts added with a Pearl Pen.  The frame and ribbon slide are from pearlescent paper.  I had a lot of problems getting any adhesive to hold the watercolor paper to the pearlescent paper.  Then the ribbon slide wouldn't stick to the ribbon.  I used Miracle tape, which didn't hold.  I used dimensional foam tape, which didn't hold.  Finally, I drizzled some Glossy Accents under the ribbon slide and held it in place until dry.  When mailed, it appeared to be holding together.  The little hearts are stickers.

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Monsoon weather

I live in the desert because I love dry, hot weather.  After lots of dry weather this year, Monsoon Season hit us in August.  We got over 2 inches of rain in August.  My joints hated the weather.  Then, September arrived.  Wow!!!
I hope it dries out soon.  I want my desert back.

Friday, August 29, 2014

OWH ODBD challenge

I've been a bit out of touch in making cards for Operation Write Home since I heard about the upcoming change in deployment.  The group is still going, but at a slower pace for now.  For more information, please go to this post on Operation Rolling Tape Gun.  There are still expenses for mailing boxes of cards to our remaining deployed troops all over the world and at sea.

One way to help meet these expenses is by supporting some of our supporting organizations, such as Our Daily Bread Designs.  They post a challenge for us to make cards each month.  They pay for shipping one box of cards for each 25 cards we sign up to meet the challenge.  Each person can only submit one card monthly.  We aren't quite at 50 cards this month, so I decided to make a card for this challenge.  The August challenge is to make a card with stars on it.  Here is my entry.

Monday, August 25, 2014

Paper piecing

Since Operation Write Home is on a slowdown while our troops are packing up to leave their posts, I decided to work on some personal cards for my family and friends who have been neglected lately.  I usually enjoy making cards with the recipient in mind instead of just guessing who will receive it.

These are very old stamps that I've had for years.  I used paper piecing for the golfer's clothing, but colored his face and shoes with colored pencils.  I also used colored pencils for the scene in the oval.  Both images were cut out with Spellbinder's dies.  The head of golf club was cut out first and left out of the die while cutting the rectangle.  I then popped it on a tiny piece of foam tape.  The golf ball is punched out several times with layers glued together.  The oval is also popped on foam tape to protect the other raised areas in the mail.

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Trying again

If you saw my previous post, you'll know I wanted to try to improve my card.  This is the 2nd card.
I stamped the images and sentiment onto watercolor paper with Encore Honeydew Ultimate Metallic ink and embossed with clear embossing powder.  I then colored the image and background with Peerless watercolor papers and a water brush.  All is mounted on copper metallic paper and pearlescent green paper before mounted on a white card base.

Monday, August 18, 2014

Trying watercolor once again

My mojo has been on vacation for a while.  I'm hoping it returns soon.  I'm trying to stimulate it by reading blogs of creative people.  This blog inspired me to try my watercolors again with stamped images.  Jennifer McGuire showed how to use a white pearl embossing powder to stamp the images of flowers.  As usual, I didn't have the same stamps she used or the same embossing powder.  I made some substitutes, using silver pearl embossing powder and some clear stamps from my stash (unlabeled).
I used my old Peerless watercolor papers to add color.  I added enough color to the background to make the embossing lines more visible.  It took several attempts to get a photo that would show some of the details.  I tried the scanner and none of the embossing was visible.  This image was mounted with Miracle Tape to a copper metallic layer and then to a green pearlescent paper.  This entire card front was then attached to a white card base.

I may try this technique again with darker ink and clear embossing powder.  I enjoy the watercoloring and would like to improve my skills.  I'll also look for some images that may work better with this technique.  When I have problems, I like to try to solve them and perfect the technique.  I hate to fail to be satisfied with a finished card without trying to get better at the technique.  How do you handle problems in making cards?

Thursday, August 14, 2014

My little blooming cactus

A while back, I picked up some small cactus plants at the garden center at Wal-Mart.  I planted them in small pots on the patio and they have done rather well.  In fact, several of them have bloomed this summer.  They have also grown, so I transplanted them into larger containers.  They seem to love having new root room and are doing well.

They bloom at night, so it's hard to see much of these flowers.  Last night, I saw that one of them was getting ready to bloom so I took photos.
Early this morning, the flower was beautiful and fresh.  My dog loved it.
About the time the sun first hit the plants, I decided to take another photo.  To my surprise, there was a small 'bee' pollinating the flower.

Very soon after the flower was pollinated, the flower began to close.  This photos were taken at 8 AM and 9 AM.

Monday, August 11, 2014

OWH Operation Rolling Tapegun

With the changes in military deployment in an unknown status, Operation Write Home is making some changes.  To learn about these changes, please go to this link and watch the video:
Operation Rolling Tapegun

Since this change coincides with my own loss of mojo, I'm just working getting the cards I have finished packed up to mail so they get to our troops.  We are all happy to have a lot of our heroes return home to their families.  However, we also know that things may change in the future and an increase in cards will be needed.  We are in standby position and will see what the future brings.

Sunday, August 3, 2014

Thanksgiving cards

I'm still struggling a lot with mojo.  I decided to pull out some of my old punches and try to give them some use.  I've used this combination of stamped sentiment with border corner punch before, so decided to try some Thanksgiving cards.

This scan of the cards is a true optical illusion.  The edges of the cream cardstock were punched with a Martha Stewart border/corner punch set.  The sentiment is a Paper Inspiration rubber stamp.  The background paper is by Colorbok (Wal-Mart) and called Bright Splash Watercolor Paper.  To show you how the cards look in a photo, you'll see that the sentiment paper is sitting on top of embossed background.
I made some cutting errors and the card on the left is really smaller than the card on the right.

There are definitely different impressions from photos and scans.  The scanner shows more detail, but the camera picks up the dimension better.

Sunday, July 27, 2014

2 more little girl cards

I managed to watercolor 2 more of the little girls, with different coloring.

These cards will go to Operation Write Home for our deployed troops to mail to their little girls at home.  Since all the little girls have different coloring, I tried to make a variety of coloring.  The background papers are all from DCWV and the dies are by Spellbinders.

Friday, July 25, 2014

More watercolored images

I managed to watercolor a few more of the little girls from the previous post.  I did ruin one other by changing colors before the first color was dry.  Watercolors will spread into other wet areas.  I'm trying make them with different coloring.  The one I threw away was a blond girl.  I stamped a couple more and will try again.  Here's the two I finished today.

I did find that I need strong adhesive to hold these together.  My ATG gun wouldn't hold them.  This is partly from the watercolor paper and partly from the shiny raised dots on the background paper.  That paper is from DCWV.  I used red liner tape and Glossy Accents for the shoes and to hold the gems in place.

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Out of comfort zone

Last week, I received a surprised gift in the mail.
This is a fundraiser set for Operation Write Home (OWH).  The stamps are discontinued and donated by My Favorite Things.  OWH used them as a fundraiser.  The donation went to OWH and the stamps were mailed out to purchaser.  However, some nice person asked them to be sent to me as a RAK (random act of kindness).  My thanks to the person who made this possible.

Now, I was placed in a position to step out of my comfort zone.  I rarely color stamped images and don't make Halloween cards.  Since I have been playing with my Peerless watercolor papers recently, I decided to use this method.  I stamped the image with pigment ink and embossed in clear embossing powder on watercolor paper.  I then cut out the image with an oval Spellbinders die.  My next step was to color this image with my watercolors.

I added a few gems and Glossy Accents to her shoes.  I also used one of the sentiments from the set that didn't imply Halloween.  I mounted it on a tag, cut out with a Spellbinders die.  I cut the tag twice, one of each color.  I then trimmed off the edges of the white one and stamped the sentiment onto that center piece.  This paper is from DCWV and has a bit of sparkle to the dots.

Friday, July 18, 2014

Butterfly thanks

I'm had these watercolored butterflies sitting on my desk for several days.  I decided to assemble the cards.
I added some gems to the butterflies and popped the wings a bit.  The sentiment is a bit hard to read on that green paper, so I made some changes with the second card.  The base cards are Papertrey Ink Vintage Cream.

Monday, July 14, 2014

Another butterfly

I found a set of 3 Spellbinder butterfly dies in my stash.  I cut out some watercolor paper with them and tried coloring them with watercolors.  This didn't really turn out as well as I'd hoped and I took 2 days on them.  I used one of them on a card.  I may come up with a way to use the others later, but this is the one I used.
I thought it needed more of something, so I added some little red gems to some of the flowers.

Saturday, July 12, 2014

Watercolor butterflies

After having good results with the die-cut leaves with watercolor, I decided to try butterflies.  This die is a very old one by Cuttlebug that came with 3 different embossing folders.  I chose the simpler folder.  I cut the watercolor paper with the die, then spent all day adding color with my Peerless watercolor sheets and waterbrush.  Last night, I was about ready to trash them.  I left them overnight to dry thoroughly and they looked better this morning.

I put them through the embossing folder and Big Shot once again, then added a little ink to edges and embossed area.  I even put red Pearl Pen on one of them.  I once read that makes them look scary to their predators, but cause it looks like they have red eyes.  Next, I found patterned papers to go with each butterfly.

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Watercolor leaves - tutorial

I don't know why I never tried this before, but it all began when I was cleaning out old supplies that had accumulated over many years.  It started when I found my Peerless Watercolor Papers that had been sitting unused over many years.  Yesterday, I showed my first attempt at die-cutting leaves from watercolor paper, then coloring them.  I repeated the process and took some photos.

I gradually added color to the leaves with a waterbrush, picking up color from the watercolor papers and using a plastic lid for a palette.  I found they dry lighter, so I would allow them to dry then add more color.  All of that water flattened out the embossing, so I put the dry colored leaves back into the Spellbinders die and embossed them again.
The next step was to prepare a card background for the leaves.  Digging through my paper stash, I found some very old 'handmade' paper that is like mulberry paper, but heavier.  I measured the size needed and tore the paper, after wetting the line with my waterbrush.

I stamped the sentiment directly on the handmade paper, then added a frame and mounted it onto a cream card base.  Next, I added the leaves and acorn.