Wednesday, August 30, 2017

Dollhouses

Here is another blog post dedicated to non-papercraft related topics, but I thought I would share another hobby I enjoy.  Dollhouses!  I have been intrigued by these since I was a child and always wanted to own one.  I never got a true dollhouse when I was young, but I did renew that passion many years ago when I thought I would take on the task of building one for myself.  But, more about that later.

This is centered more around a present my husband gave to me for my birthday this year.  A dollhouse!  It's really a toy, so its sturdy enough for a child to play with, and I sure would have loved to have done that as a little girl.  It came as boards and needed to be assembled, so this was how I spent my birthday....building my own house!  Isn't it cute?



It has 3 stories and so I had a lot of fun finding furniture to decorate each room with.  I decided to go with an old fashioned, Victorian looking theme, because if I had my choice, thats the kind of home I'd like to live in if I were a doll.

Here is a full on view of the rooms.
In the back of the bedroom is a little sewing nook
and cradle, with an actual to scale afghan!
Every victorian home needs a maid, right?



A little closer look at some of the freshly baked muffins and my china dishes

Tea is laid out in the kitchen for a nice afternoon break


Upstairs in the nursery, the baby is trying to escape from bed and play with the train set.  That quilt is actually hand stitched and to 1:12 scale.  I found it on Etsy.
I love my formal living room with china hutches.  Of course, the open concept room isn't very "victorian" but we are a progressive family here.
I think I would enjoy living in this bedroom too.  The quilt is another hand stitched creation that is to scale.  I love it!


Here is an attempt I made to build my own house...this started about 11 years ago and this is as far as I have gotten.  I need to finish it....someday!!



 And just in case that isn't enough..here are 3 other dollhouses, still in their boxes waiting to be built.  No pressure there..

Monday, August 28, 2017

A "SUPER" Afghan

This is a special blog post, dedicated to my husband.  Happy Birthday, love!

My husband is a fanatic when it comes to anything comic book related.  Particularly, Suberboy or Superman...well, any variation or incarnation of that character or the DC Comics world in general.  Being married to this man gives me a very nerdy approach to life, which I appreciate, because I love the ideas involved in the creation of these characters.

Because of this, I am always trying to come up with ideas that I can contribute to his ever growing surplus of superhero paraphernalia, as well as support his love of the genre.  What better way, than another afghan?!

I learned a new technique called C2C, which basically means, corner to corner.  The stitch starts in a lower corner and you gradually increase on each row and then after making the upper and lower corner the size you want, you decrease back until you have made a square.


This afghan is made up of many, many squares that I then attached together to make my afghan.  I used a graph pattern, much like you would if doing counted cross stitch.  It sounds complicated, but really it wasn't once I got the hang of it and learned to carry yarn from spot to another spot so I didn't have to constantly tie off and tie on colors.

He seemed pretty happy with the blanket and that made me happy that I could make something that brought a smile to his face.


And just in case you think his comic book passion is exaggerated...here are some snapshots I just took of his comic book room.  Yes, he has an entire room devoted to his true love.  But, who am I to judge?  Don't I have a craft room?


The pictures are not very good because he keeps it pretty dark with very filtered light in this room, but this is a shot of many of his comic books stored in upright bins.  He has many more in boxes under these tables.  On the walls are signed artwork and a specific collection of comic books that copied the original 1st edition of Superman.


These two tall shelves are crammed full of graphic novels, books and comic book themed action figures and merchandising items that the kids have gifted him over the years.



This is a fun birthday card I made him for his last birthday.  True stampin' up fans may recognize 2 stamp sets I put together (Marquee Messages and Cookie Cutter Halloween). The latter isn't still available, but I believe it was a little Vampire boy that I reworked to be a superman type guy.  We had a good laugh over that one.


Here are a few more shots of the walls covered in the CGC graded comics he has. 


Honestly, you don't get the full effect of the room unless you just go inside and look around.  I can't begin to give it justice with these dim pictures, but you can at least get the idea.

Happy Birthday to my guy!

Saturday, August 26, 2017

Floral Phrases

I made this card in June, and thought I had already shared it.  Apparently, I didn't!  My son and his wife celebrated their 10th wedding anniversary, so I opted to make them a card special enough for their day.

I really think I have not given enough love to the stamp set Floral Phrases.  I first saw it at OnStage 2 years ago, fell in love, had to have it and then, as usual, never cracked open the case.  It's criminal, really!  What a lovely set.  It coordinates beautifully with the Detailed Floral Thinlits.


I used Pool Party for my color of choice and kept it all very simple; in a monochromatic style.  The details in the dies lend themselves to being busy enough, so I didn't think it needed much else.



Using the Big Shot Die Brush is a good idea for getting out all the little bits of details when cutting this intricate of dies.  I also made sure I used the Precision Base Plate for ease of level cutting so I maintained a high level of performance with such a detailed die.




On the inside of the card, I added some special stamping to finish the card off.  I think they appreciated the fresh look of the card, but mainly they probably enjoyed the cash gift we included inside.  And really, who can blame that!?

Thursday, August 24, 2017

Daisy Delight

If you have been paying attention to anything related to Stampin' Up this year, you probably have heard all about the new Daisy Delight stamp set and coordinating Daisy Punch.  They are so fun!  I have played around with it a bit already, but this evening, I came up with a new card that I kind of like.


 It wasn't totally original as I have seen so many variations of cards made with this set in the last few months that it becomes difficult to be completely one of a kind,  but I saw something similar on a blog from Denmark that was all in that language so I couldn't make out all the details.  Here is my own spin on that idea.

 I also tried a different dry emboss background on this variation.  I think I like both versions equally.  The Daisy punch cuts out a full 8 petals for the flower, so I trimmed and layered to get the effect I wanted.  I also took my bone folder to lightly curl the petals a bit.

It's just a simple card with a cheery feel to it.   I think I really will like sending it out to someone soon!


I did some trial and error trying to get a watercolor on the circle.  Some were done with a stamp from Touches of Texture, and some were painted onto watercolor paper.  I layered Daffodil Delight with a touch of Peekaboo Peach.  The stems were stamped with Old Olive.

Tuesday, August 22, 2017

Lots of Little Squares- Beautiful Afghan

Good morning!  I decided today I would share another passion I have that isn't related to paper-craft. I love to crochet!  Here is an afghan I created lately for my new craft room.  It is made from Red Heart yarn and was totally made up of many little granny squares. The pattern was very basic and I made it up as I went along mostly.  I made all the colorful centers and then joined as I went with the cream colored yarn.

I have loved to play with yarn since I was a young girl and my sister taught me how to knit and crochet.  I admit to not being very good at finishing projects once I start them (I get bored) but lately, I have actually finished a few.  I will share those in the upcoming days as well as my other paper related projects.



 I have this afghan sitting on my chair in the corner of my craft room.  It's very cozy there and sometimes I like to snuggle under it and read a book or watch a little TV when I don't feel like sitting at my desk and playing with ink and paper.


I've always got a yarn project going on, and am working on another one right now in shades of pink and white.   I am not sure what I will be doing with it; it may become a gift for a granddaughter or daughter in law, or I may even keep it for myself.  Can we ever have enough blankets?  I think now!

Saturday, August 19, 2017

Showcasing Petal Garden Designer Series Paper Stack

I thought I would take a minute to showcase a beautiful new paper stack now available with Stamping' Up!  The Petal Garden Designer Series Paper is gorgeous!  The colors used are Calypso Coral, Old Olive, Pool Party, Rich Razzleberry, Sweet Sugarplum and Whisper White.  It comes in 6" x 6" and includes 48 sheets, 4 each of 12 double-sided patterns.  The stack retails for $10.00 and is well worth the price.

Here I made many little treat bags following a pattern I found here.  The treat bags will be given to my team at work as a little pick-me-up for all their hard work during a transition period at the office that has tried everyone for the past few weeks.  Sometimes, it just matters to get that little extra recognition for your efforts.



I used 2 different stamps from 2 different sets, but any thing you have on hand would do the job.  I also coordinated with some fun ribbons that match the paper so nicely.


Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Painted Harvest- Sneak Peek!

I decided to give you a sneak peek of a new stamp set that will be available September 1st with the new Stampin' Up! Holiday catalog.  It's so pretty!  The sunflowers are easily made with a 2 step stamp process that is fool-proof.  I kid you not!  No hassles with lining up stamps so they align with the 2nd stamp process.  They just work together and have a beautiful, realistic appearance.  


The stamp set also has a beautiful 2 step stamp for the leaves.  I opted to not use it on the card I made for today, but it is lovely and there is a coordinating leaf punch that can be purchased either separately or is a bundle for 10% off.  Also, included is a 2-step acorn, ferns and 3 sentiments.  It's a gorgeous set.  I LOVE it.  I think you will too.


In the stitched circle that cut out with the BigShot, I heat embossed this sentiment that I pulled from an old favorite stamp set, Watercolor Wings.  The new Sunburst punch backs the sentiment and is layered on a banner I created with the Triple Banner Punch.

I thought I would show a close-up of these beautiful flowers.  I used crushed curry and Crumb Cake for the petals and Soft Suede for the centers.  So much fun.  I made 30 of these cards for a swap I am in this month.  They were pretty simple to make up and so much fun to stamp.


All of the supplies used are listed below.  Remember though, Painted Harvest will not be available to purchase until September 1st.  If you would like to have access to the holiday catalog, please let me know!

Monday, August 14, 2017

Mediterranean Moments

Hi crafty friends!  I thought I would take a moment to share a card I made using the lovely Mediterranean Moments stamp set from Stampin' Up!  I've had this one for awhile, but hadn't decided what I wanted to do with it.  This was my 1st time cracking the box open and I absolutely love the images.  I only stamped one so far, but it stamped beautiful, detailed and crisp lines despite how fine they were.  Stamping' Up! really has impressive quality with their rubber stamps.


I decided to stamp the image in black ink and then do a watercolor wash of ink.  That was the fun part!  I loved blending the ink in layers to add deepness, shading and variations to the color.  It's so fun and easy.  I did take my time though, and let it dry in between layers so that when I added more ink it gave depth.  When I was finished I was wishing I could sit awhile on the bench and drink in all the atmosphere this image brings.


When it was time to figure out how I was going to make my painted images into cards...well, that was the tougher problem.  They were busy and colorful enough that using a patterned paper was going to be distracting, and yet, I thought the solid card stocks were a little too dull.  I compromised and did some light stamping on the background card and a layer of the new designer paper Color Theory.


What do you think?



I decided that a sentiment on the outside of the card wasn't necessary and may add one inside later, but even without that, it really does have a fun artsy look to it.  I am looking forward to playing with the other images in the set as well.



Saturday, August 12, 2017

Love Today All Inclusive Planner Kit

I am so excited to share one of the newer items that Stampin' Up! introduced in the new catalog this year.  The Love Today All-Inclusive Planner Kit is a winner.  It comes with everything you need to plan your day, your work or your life.  I personally keep one at my desk at work, and another is here at home.  It comes with all the pages for an entire year, and no dates are printed, so you can start whatever date you want.

When I saw this in our new catalog, I actually squealed out loud with happiness as I was going to buy a planner to get more organized and now Stampin' Up! is offering their very own.  It comes beautiful packaged together in one box as a kit, and everything is in pristine shape ready to be assembled.


The kit includes everything you need and a refill kit is also available in case you want to restock your supplies without needing to buy the entire kit again.  You will receive the lovely binder with reinforced metal corners, 12 divider pages, calendar pages, 4 photo protector pages, 5" x 7" page lifter, 6 sticker pages, pocket pages and sticky notes.


The photo pocket pages are very unique for this type of planner.  They add a personalization to the planner that is so fun.  You can imagine the possibilities!


The stickers in full color and gold foil, add that special detail to your planned daily activities.  You can use your imagination and creativity to dress up your planner however you would like!


This is truly a special item and I have had many friends see mine at work and want to order one for themselves!  Let me set you up with one too.  Follow my links below to get your own Love Today All Inclusive Planner Kit right away!



Thursday, August 10, 2017

Bunch of Blossoms

Hi crafty friends!  I have another card to share with you today.  I made this card awhile back and realized I hadn't blogged about it, so thought that I would do so today.  This was made with the fun set called Bunch of Blossoms.  The way this set is designed, you get to use the different elements of the flower to build it up any way that you would like to.  It also has the option to outline the image or just use the 2-step stamping method to add depth and detail.


When I first played with this set, I was part of a swap and knew I would need to make 20+ cards so did my usual assembly line process.  My first incarnation of the card involved lots of separate petals and each one needed to be stamped and then cut out with the coordinating Blossom Builder Punch.  I started in and before too long had many, many petals and leaves all cut out.  But, as I began to build my cards, I just couldn't come up with something original and yet what I wanted.  Knowing that I could use them on another project in the future, I decided to put them away and start from scratch.


This time, I decided to just stamp my flowers out onto the paper and let them be as they were.  Simple and pretty.  I added some pretty ribbon in the new Powder Pink color and embossed some labels using the thank you sentiment from Baby Bear stamp set and punched it out using the new Pretty Label Punch.  The color combo of Flirty Flamingo, Powder Pink and Pear Pizzazz, really went well together.









At this point, I began making all my many cards to share.  Soft and pretty.  I like it!