Sunday, August 10, 2014

A wonderful weekend

At first, you may wonder what this has to do with cards.  Hang with me...

I'm in the midst of a great weekend.  Yesterday, my cousin got married and I was lucky enough to spend the day at the ceremony and reception and then, because the wedding was at 11:30, at another cousin's house for a big impromptu family dinner of 19 of the guests.  I say "impromptu" because we decided at the reception to get together after it was over, thought about going to a park, and then my cousin just volunteered her house.  She's a brave woman to invite 15 family members over at the drop of a hat!

Here's the card I made for Laura and Robbie to celebrate their special day.  I struggled with the wedding dress; I wanted it to remain a pure white but I also wanted it to be in contrast with the background.  For that reason, I decided to make a glowing effect around the couple.  Then, the dress still looked too plain to me.  I used a white gel pen to doodle lace-like patterns onto the dress; dots on the upper half and swirls on the lower half.  You can see the swirls in this photo if you look closely.  Excuse the dark background in the photo; that's the only way I could get the detail on the dress to show. 


Today, I was able to celebrate milestones with two friends.  First, my friend Pam is entering the Dominican Sisters in Nashville on Friday.  She's been discerning her vocation for quite some time and has been called to enter religious life as a sister.  I'm so incredibly proud of her for doing something so generous and so counter-cultural.  Father said a special blessing for her at the end of Mass today and our Knights of Columbus put on a reception so we could all visit with her and wish her the best.  Since she'll be entering as a postulant on the Feast of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary, I thought this card would be an appropriate way to wish her well in her new pursuit.  I'm going to miss her, but I'm glad that I can send her snail mail here and there to keep in touch.  Since OWH is requesting a slight reduction in the number of cards we're making (as of August 2014), I offered to send her periodic packs of cards so she and the other sisters can use them to write to family and friends. 

This stamp by ODBD is currently on clearance, so grab it now if you want it.

Finally, my friend Tammy is celebrating her 50th birthday today.  Woohoo!  Her kids planned a cookout and will have the fire pit going tonight.  That's perfect since it's National S'mores Day!  Tammy is a card maker herself, and so I'll post her card in a bit after I know she's seen it in person first. 
 
------
Cards shipped to OWH in 2014: 21
Cards shipped to OWH in 2013: 829 blank and 301 AnyHero
Cards shipped to OWH in 2012: 1284 blank and 218 AnyHero
Cards shipped to OWH in 2011: 1695

Check out OWH at www.operationwritehome.org to learn more about its mission and how to get involved.

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Part 2: VCMP cards

Round 2 of VCMP cards:

Masculine vintage image card: (Pearl Pen is harder to use than I thought.  Those dots are so wonky!)

Thank you card with sprayed ink:

Colorful background card: (I used the shaving cream tutorial from several years ago to make this paper and it's been in my stash ever since, so this was a great excuse to use it up!)

Things with wings:



------
Cards shipped to OWH in 2014: 21
Cards shipped to OWH in 2013: 829 blank and 301 AnyHero
Cards shipped to OWH in 2012: 1284 blank and 218 AnyHero
Cards shipped to OWH in 2011: 1695

Check out OWH at www.operationwritehome.org to learn more about its mission and how to get involved.

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

July 4th VCMP Part 1

This past weekend, OWH had a Virtual Card Making Party to celebrate Independence Day.  I wasn't able to play along at the time, but I wrote down all the challenges and have gotten started on them in no particular order.

After taking Sandy's coloring class at Queen's Ink about two weeks ago, I'm really trying to color a bit more and amp up that part of my card making.  That's why I chose the winter kids images to use on those cards.

Challenge 15 (Love/Furry Creatures): This one was just scraps sitting on my desk, nothing fabulous.  

Challenge 6 (Two winter cards, one with a traditional Christmas color scheme and one with other colors):  




Challenge 18 (Sunday Sketch): OK, I modified it a bit!  

Challenge 16 (Teen card without teen stamps): I know my middle school students are obsessed with duct tape and so I used patterned washi tapes with a modern sentiment.

 Just 14 challenges to go! 
------
Cards shipped to OWH in 2014: 21
Cards shipped to OWH in 2013: 829 blank and 301 AnyHero
Cards shipped to OWH in 2012: 1284 blank and 218 AnyHero
Cards shipped to OWH in 2011: 1695

Check out OWH at www.operationwritehome.org to learn more about its mission and how to get involved.

Sunday, June 8, 2014

I'm going to get back to cards soon!

One week of school left!  I'm so thrilled to get my free time back!

A little update on crafty spending in 2014:

In my last related post, I had spent about $15 through March.

Last month, I took my mom to an ODBD Christmas card making class as a Mother's Day present.  I'll count my class fee (but not Mom's gift) in my "crafty spending" category, so that puts me at $45.  In case anyone is deciding whether to take this class, I wouldn't recommend the class to others as I didn't learn anything new and the vast majority of what I did was just glue together layers.   The card designs were also not very mailable as they were quite thick.  The room set up (one long row) wasn't really conducive to talking to other crafters and the lady giving the class spent a lot of time badmouthing former employers which struck me as unprofessional.  It was less than relaxing, unfortunately, though the cards were pretty. 

This month, I'm going to Sandy's Copic class at Queens Ink in Savage, MD (well, as long as I can call tomorrow and get a spot).  I ordered the markers I needed today, along with a few extras and a refill of the first color I've run dry, BG0000.  There went $65 more!  The class will be $35.  $100 is totally worth it to learn from the amazing talent that is Sandy Allnock!

2014 total, halfway through the year: $160 (not bad at all!)

------
Cards shipped to OWH in 2014: 21
Cards shipped to OWH in 2013: 829 blank and 301 AnyHero
Cards shipped to OWH in 2012: 1284 blank and 218 AnyHero
Cards shipped to OWH in 2011: 1695

Check out OWH at www.operationwritehome.org to learn more about its mission and how to get involved.

Saturday, March 22, 2014

Raeanna's 6x6 Challenge

Raeanna's a great one for posting challenges to the OWH FB wall to get our mojo going.  This time she really threw down the gauntlet.  We were to take a whole 6x6 pad and turn it into cards.  Kristie does this all the time.  I don't know if I've ever completely used up any paper pad.

I did Raeanna's challenge...halfway.  I purposely took the smallest unused 6x6 I had, just 24 sheets, and took one of each design from the pack.  That meant I was only dealing with 12 sheets.  I decided I had the time and energy to do that much.  This pad was one that I'd gotten as a Christmas present and hadn't dug in to yet.   I'm not really a fan of pastel pink, so that made this even more of a challenge.  Here are the 14 cards I made last night and tonight. One of the pages was little journaling tags, so lots of the focal points were already made...score! Oh, and a few of these meet Raeanna's secondary challenge, polka dots and stripes. 








Down by half!


------
Cards shipped to OWH in 2014: 21
Cards shipped to OWH in 2013: 829 blank and 301 AnyHero
Cards shipped to OWH in 2012: 1284 blank and 218 AnyHero
Cards shipped to OWH in 2011: 1695

Check out OWH at www.operationwritehome.org to learn more about its mission and how to get involved.

OWH 3.0

I can't believe it's taken me a whole week to blog about the awesome time I had supporting OWH last Saturday.

The story really starts back in October.  Nancy posted a photo to the OWH FB page with a gigantic pile of cards that she and her friends had made at their OWH card party.  I guess she had posted it from her phone, because the photo was tagged with the location.  Nancy and I live in the same state about 90 minutes apart.  I wrote a comment and asked if they had met at an LSS to make cards; I don't have one near me, but I'm sure there are some elsewhere in the state.  No, the group had met at Nancy's home.  Nancy graciously invited me to her home for the next party which was already planned for March 15th.  How amazingly organized is she? 

Fast forward a couple of months.  I asked if I should bring kits.  Nancy asked if I could do three.  In my typical style, I went overboard and made 13, which meant 150 cards to assemble.  Whoops!  Good thing there was lots of help!  :)

So last Saturday, I packed up and headed across the bridge to meet Nancy.  We'd only "met" online but right away we confessed to having done plenty of FB research on the other just to make sure we were OK!  And we were.  I had a great time.  Nancy, her sister, and her friend made lots of card kits.  The other guests were mostly non-card makers but after three of these parties, they're pretty good with the ATG!  There was lots of good food, an opportunity to earn tickets for wonderful raffle items, and good company.  I stayed almost 12 hours and made it home just before midnight.  I've already got the September date reserved. 

Here are some photos.
Nancy made this board to display my cards. 

Half of the 490 cards we made

The other half!

Look at the wonderful raffle items.

A few ladies hard at work on the final kit.


The kit makers!
I was happy to make some new friends and get to support OWH!  I am so looking forward to the next one in September!

------
Cards shipped to OWH in 2014: 21
Cards shipped to OWH in 2013: 829 blank and 301 AnyHero
Cards shipped to OWH in 2012: 1284 blank and 218 AnyHero
Cards shipped to OWH in 2011: 1695

Check out OWH at www.operationwritehome.org to learn more about its mission and how to get involved.

Monday, March 10, 2014

Crafty spending

I'm getting ready to buy my first house soon.  While I'm a thrifty shopper, I'm a shopper.  I enjoy hunting out good bargains but that also means I spend money on non-essentials on a pretty regular basis.  A few dollars here and a few dollars there will add up over the course of the year.  I decided to start being very, very mindful about my spending in the months leading up to my purchase since I know expenses will come (literally?) out of the woodwork when I'm a homeowner. 

I didn't call it a New Year's Resolution, but I suppose that's what it was- I decided not to spend money on craft supplies in 2014 unless I was replenishing a staple.  To me, staples are white card stock, envelopes, dimensional tape, and ATG tape.  I would also consider specialty adhesives like a glue pen if the need arose.  I have enough of the other stuff (stamps, papers, stickers, punches, and dies) to keep me crafting for years and years.  So far, I've bought $11.90 worth of foam tape and white card stock, using a Kmart rewards points coupon to get the foam tape for about half price. 

My plan was somewhat foiled when I won the ODBD challenge last month.  The prize is a super-generous $25 gift certificate to the store. (Thanks ODBD!)  They have great stamps and it would be a shame to let that gift certificate expire (if such a date exists).  So, I read that they were having their anniversary sale this week and I waited to see what it would be.  It's 20% off if you buy 4 or more stamps or stamp sets.  Of course, that also makes shipping a bit more expensive (though still very reasonable at $5.50) and would have created more expense for me.  Well, I didn't need 4 stamps, so I found 3 totaling $26 and used the $3 shipping option then subtracted the gift certificate and the $0.75 in rewards points that I'd accrued.  Grand total for 3 stamps: $3.25.  I can absolutely be OK with that!  In case you're wondering, I bought Blessed Virgin Mary (I'm Catholic and a friend is soon to become a nun, so this set was a must-have so I can make her a card), Moose Single (I wanted the Father's Day set that it's part of, but I restrained myself because I know I already have a good collection of sentiments I can use with the image), and Ship Single.  The latter two stamps will be great for masculine cards and I can use them to practice coloring or stamp them as is due to their great detail.  Yay!  I can't wait to get some new purple rubber in the mail in a few days! 

Grand total for the year thus far: $15.15.  If I continue along doing this well, I will have spent well under $100 this year for my hobby.  In the past, I never specifically counted, but I would estimate $500 per year would not have been out of the ordinary. 
------
Cards shipped to OWH in 2014: 21
Cards shipped to OWH in 2013: 829 blank and 301 AnyHero
Cards shipped to OWH in 2012: 1284 blank and 218 AnyHero
Cards shipped to OWH in 2011: 1695

Check out OWH at www.operationwritehome.org to learn more about its mission and how to get involved.

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Snow Day #10

I had the wrong title on yesterday's post.  That was actually snow day #9 and today is #10.  I cannot remember a year when we've had so many days off nor a year with as many snow storms as this one.  We have had years with more total snowfall.  This year, we're just getting it in little frequent bursts.

For March, the ODBD challenge is to make a thank you card.  I'm especially grateful to them this month as I won last month's $25 gift certificate.  I have my eye on a moose stamp set and a few others.

I had this stamp and paper collection out yesterday to make some western cards, so I just used the scraps that were left to make a thank you card.  I hadn't made a sunburst (actually called "starburst" on the blog, oops!) card for a while and I had forgotten just how fun they are.  I might whip up a few more of them today.

Happy Crafting!
------
Cards shipped to OWH in 2014: 21
Cards shipped to OWH in 2013: 829 blank and 301 AnyHero
Cards shipped to OWH in 2012: 1284 blank and 218 AnyHero
Cards shipped to OWH in 2011: 1695

Check out OWH at www.operationwritehome.org to learn more about its mission and how to get involved.

Monday, March 3, 2014

Snow Day #8

I think we might be at the record for the most snow days in one year, at least as far back as I can remember.  Today is #8 and tomorrow doesn't look too promising, at least not for an on-time start.  

I made a set of "cowboy" cards for Sandy's special request.  And after watching OWHtv today, I challenged myself to make the same card in three ways: masculine, feminine, and kid-friendly. 


Feminine Version- This card photographed strangely.  The green color is really a drab olive shade, not lime!

Masculine/Unisex Version

Kid Version

------
Cards shipped to OWH in 2014: 21
Cards shipped to OWH in 2013: 829 blank and 301 AnyHero
Cards shipped to OWH in 2012: 1284 blank and 218 AnyHero
Cards shipped to OWH in 2011: 1695

Check out OWH at www.operationwritehome.org to learn more about its mission and how to get involved.

Thursday, February 13, 2014

Olive You!

This week's Operation Write Home Midweek Throwdown is "punny cards."  I used an old SU stamp, some cardstock, patterned papers by Pebbles, an embossing folder, Copics, and a heart punch to  bring this simple card together.  Then I made 11 kits of it to take to a card party next month.  I was aiming for something that men would choose.  Do you think I succeeded?


 P.S.- As I went to link up, I saw that I wasn't the first to use this stamp! 
------
Cards shipped to OWH in 2014: 21
Cards shipped to OWH in 2013: 829 blank and 301 AnyHero
Cards shipped to OWH in 2012: 1284 blank and 218 AnyHero
Cards shipped to OWH in 2011: 1695

Check out OWH at www.operationwritehome.org to learn more about its mission and how to get involved.

Saturday, February 1, 2014

Daisy Thank You

 I really had fun making this card from some scraps I found on my desk.  I don't often put elements on an angle, but placing the square on an angle seemed to work well on this card.  Sandy asked for thanks and birthday cards in particular in a recent video, so I finished this card off with a "thank you" sentiment.


------
Cards shipped to OWH in 2014: 21
Cards shipped to OWH in 2013: 829 blank and 301 AnyHero
Cards shipped to OWH in 2012: 1284 blank and 218 AnyHero
Cards shipped to OWH in 2011: 1695

Check out OWH at www.operationwritehome.org to learn more about its mission and how to get involved.

MWT- Kids Cards

This week's Midweek Throwdown was to make cards for kids.  I make a good deal of kids cards because I love bright colors and the two seem to go hand-in-hand. 

I drained my first Copic marker coloring this image.  BG0000 is all dried up!  Now I need to learn how to refill a Copic. 

Thanks to a discussion on the OWH FB page about white gel pens, I took mine for a spin on this card to add a little detail to the green scallop. 


------
Cards shipped to OWH in 2014: 21
Cards shipped to OWH in 2013: 829 blank and 301 AnyHero
Cards shipped to OWH in 2012: 1284 blank and 218 AnyHero
Cards shipped to OWH in 2011: 1695

Check out OWH at www.operationwritehome.org to learn more about its mission and how to get involved.

Brown Cards!

Remember April Fool's Day 2012?  If not, go watch Sandy's vlog and you'll understand why this month's ODBD challenge made me chuckle.  

Here's my brown card.  I also made it masculine in honor of the Card Bowl 2014! 

I'm looking forward to seeing what tomorrow's sketch challenge will bring!


------
Cards shipped to OWH in 2014: 21
Cards shipped to OWH in 2013: 829 blank and 301 AnyHero
Cards shipped to OWH in 2012: 1284 blank and 218 AnyHero
Cards shipped to OWH in 2011: 1695

Check out OWH at www.operationwritehome.org to learn more about its mission and how to get involved.

Super Bowl Challenge 1

Sandy challenged us to make a card in support of either the Broncos or Seahawks. My card is obviously in Seahawks colors. My team, the Patriots, lost their division so I'll support Seattle since I went there on vacation in 2012. Of course, I'm going to Denver in June so I could have just as easily supported them. My card is decked out in Seattle's colors. The small stripes remind me of stripes on many team's sleeves. I unearthed the sticker last night when I was sorting through supplies to give to my coworker. She's starting a journaling project with a group of academically challenged eighth graders (7 boys and 1 girl) and what she has in mind is more akin to a Smash book than a journal. She came to me asking where I buy cheap scrap booking paper and I told her not to buy anything until I raided my stash for her. 

Sunday, January 26, 2014

A few more kits

Last week I worked just 1/2 day.  It was crazy, especially when you consider that we only got about 3-4" of snow!   That led to lots of unexpected time in the craft room to use up some scraps and to cut into new paper for several kits for a party in March. 

This weekend, my cards focused on thank you and birthday themes because Sandy mentioned being particularly in need of those sentiments. 
Kit of 14 for the party.  Stamp by SU, papers by DCWV from 2009 Spring Stack, Spellbinders dies

Kit of 12 for party.  Dies by Cuttlebug, paper by American Crafts

I made two of these with some leftovers from my desk.  I might make this one into a kit if time permits.  Stamp- SU Lighthouse, Border Punch- EK Success, Paper- Pebbles, Inc.

One of a kind.

I made several of these to use up the alphabet paper scraps and yellow card stock scraps.

Just one like this, using a Goofy embellishment from Kim.

Two of these made from scraps.  I just love this image by Unity Stamp Co! 

------
Cards shipped to OWH in 2014: 21
Cards shipped to OWH in 2013: 829 blank and 301 AnyHero
Cards shipped to OWH in 2012: 1284 blank and 218 AnyHero
Cards shipped to OWH in 2011: 1695

Check out OWH at www.operationwritehome.org to learn more about its mission and how to get involved.

Thursday, January 23, 2014

Midweek Throwdown- Pastels

I just used up a few pieces of paper from my desk and a very old piece from a stack to make three of these Mom cards for this week's pastel colors MWT.


The stamp is one my mom picked out when we were shopping a few years ago.  "Use this one on my Mother's Day card," she told me.  :)
 

------
Cards shipped to OWH in 2014: 21
Cards shipped to OWH in 2013: 829 blank and 301 AnyHero
Cards shipped to OWH in 2012: 1284 blank and 218 AnyHero
Cards shipped to OWH in 2011: 1695

Check out OWH at www.operationwritehome.org to learn more about its mission and how to get involved.

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

The shortest work week?

Hi everyone!  Are you getting snow where you live?  We got a bit on Tuesday which has made for an interesting week.  Monday was a holiday.  Tuesday was a scheduled teacher inservice but we were released to go home at noon because a snow storm was starting to make the roads dicey.  Today, we were closed because of the snow we got yesterday during the afternoon and evening.  Tomorrow, we'll be closed as road crews continue to try to clear the roads.  What will happen on Friday remains to be seen, but I can tell you that a one-day school week will be hilarious!

I was invited to an OWH card party in March and I've been working on a few kits to take with me.  The hostess asked me to make three.  In typical fashion, I couldn't keep myself to three.  I figure I'll just keep making them while my mojo permits and if I don't take them all to the party, I will assemble them myself.  It's a win-win.  I'm motivated to make nice kits and OWH will get lots of cards! 

Do you have an opinion about which kits I should take?  From what I understand, most of the guests at the party aren't card makers, so they're pretty much only going to need to assemble the kits and maybe do some simple coloring. 

This color yellow just makes me happy!  I had to cut a lot of pieces for this kit, but the layers are definitely worth the effort.  I colored the centers of the flowers to make the paper match the yellow cardstock and I think it added a lot to the card.  (Patterned paper- Making Memories, Bee- Studio G, Sentiment- KI Memories, Embossing- Cuttlebug Swiss Dots)

A little something masculine since I never make enough cards for men!  (Stamps- TPC Studios, Patterned Paper- American Crafts, Copics E79, E25, B06, Y17)

This sketch is a go-to favorite for me when I want to use several patterned papers.  OWH Sketch #168.  Here, I used up a good portion of a pack of Stampin' Up paper.  (Mini rant: Why do they insist on putting their logo in the corner of each page?  If I cut it off, I waste a lot of paper.  If I don't, I've got a logo on my cards.  Wah!)  The stamp is by Studio G.  The button punch by Martha Stewart was blog candy from JoAnn R. 

Look here, a teen boy card!  I'm so happy about this one because it's tough to make cards for this age group.  I've had this paper in my craft room for a couple of years now.  Who can pass up a 25 pack of paper for $1?  Not this girl!  I made one card with it once and I felt like it wasn't that successful since I'd fussy cut the image which isn't my greatest skill.  I realized the Sizzix ovals were a good shape for the image I wanted and things came together from there.  Sentiment- There She Goes Clear Stamps (out of business as of last month), Embossing- Cuttlebug Diamond Plate, Circles- Spellbinders, Ovals- Sizzix, Paper- Steve's Pages licensed by SugarTree.

CASEd from this CHA card kit sent in by an OWHer.  Was it your kit?  Let me know so I can give you credit!  Sentiment- Studio G, Penguin- Stampin' Up Polar Pals, Border Punch- Fiskars, Ovals- Cuttlebug
 
I really like this card, but I'm not sure it's one I'll take to the party.  The daubers can be messy and I don't want that to cause any problems.  I might just assemble these myself.  (Bingo daubers- Dollar Tree, Eyelets- American Crafts, Sentiment- KI Memories)

------
Cards shipped in 2014: None just yet...
Cards shipped to OWH in 2013: 829 blank and 301 AnyHero
Cards shipped to OWH in 2012: 1284 blank and 218 AnyHero
Cards shipped to OWH in 2011: 1695

Check out OWH at www.operationwritehome.org to learn more about its mission and how to get involved.