Saturday, February 26, 2011

Think Spring!

I never thought I was a flower person, but here I went and bought the new Build a Blossom Stamp set and punch! Sheesh! Guess what - I am in love....
This is a card we made at Stamp Club in January. I really like how you can turn paper into a dimensional flower and really have it LOOK LIKE A FLOWER!!!

Gotta run, shower, feed family, then off to Girls Night Out - which really should be Girls Day Out, as the festivities begin at 3 already! Massages, facials, stamping, wine tasting.....swoon! It'll be a heavenly day....

Friday, February 25, 2011

Sweet Silky Stems....

This month's technique at our monthly Stamp Clubs was the Faux Silk technique. I love the softness this adds to a card - and while you can't see it real well in the photo above, to touch and feel it, it does feel like silk. This is a pretty simple technique that can be applied in multiple ways. If you'd like to learn several techniques, contact me to join my Monthly Stamp Clubs. I have three clubs that meet in three different locations, Defiance, Denison and Schleswig. We are constantly laughing, learning, chatting, having fun - so why not get yourself included! Oh, I forgot to mention - we typically EAT!!!

Here is the complete card that we did:

We also made another card and a gift bag with this same tech.
Okay - I better get a move on - I've got 60 make and take packets to make up for our Girls Night Out Festivities tomorrow night!!! Oh the fun we will have....

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Oh Baby!

Hi there folks! It's a sunny day at the Arkfeld ranch kids might say something different, as Aubrie just bit Alex in the butt - which sent Alex into a fit of tears. Secretly, I wanted to high five Aubs - Alex is constantly in her face, taking toys away, blah, blah, blah. Just a little self defense on her part!

Anyway.....I have an adorable little baby card to share today. (Please nevermind the fact that it's unedited - I didn't want to take the time to lighten and brighten today!) This card was a bit time consuming, but well worth my efforts. I hand stamped each of the pennants from Party this Way in Early Espresso, and hand cut. Then I stamped them again in Pear Pizzazz and cut out the centers to layer them up - that was much easier cutting! I punched holes in the corners of each pennant and strung some twine thru. The ribbon was yo-yoed simply by gathering one edge with some thread and a needle. It was a little tricky, but super cute. I just love the seam binding ribbon - it's so easy to work with, light and springy!

I die cut the letters with the Naturally Serif Die and attached those to the ribbon with glue dots.

Then, to finish it off, stamped Congratulations from the Occasional Quotes hostess set. Had I been thinking, I would have stamped that a bit lower to be lined up with the polka dots.....oh, well. It's done!

Hope you enjoy!!!!

Later gators!

Monday, February 21, 2011

Sew Suite for you....

I hesitate on purchasing this set. But, with a little twisting of my arm, I bit the bullet and got it! And I have been having fun with this one. Super cute. I'm hoping that I can use it later on some of Aubrie's scrapbook pages. Oh, wait....who am I trying to kid. Actual scrapbook pages - ya right.

I made this card recently at a couple of workshops that I've done. I think everyone has like it!

Don't be afraid to cut your wide striped grosgrain ribbon in half. You'll be glad you did. It'll fray - that's okay - it's a great look.

Also - I recieved this:

from Kelli over at How cool is that! I'm feeling like a super stamper now!

When you receive this award you are to:

1) thank the person who gave this award to me and link it back to their blog

2) share 8 things about myself
  • I love all things crafty - in all mediums. Fabric, painting, clay, stamping, paper - you name it.
  • I drink a small pot of coffee EVERYDAY. I have a 4 cup coffee maker - and I anticipate my coffee every morning. With cream and sugar. I recently switch over to Truvia instead of sugar. I was okay with it, but really missed my sugar taste. It's just not the same.
  • I love snow. Oh, wait - maybe you already know that about me. Well, in case you didn't - now you know.
  • I prefer a good grilled steak over chicken anyday. I'm a red meat kinda gal.
  • I enjoy a good beer with my hubby while we make supper together and have our daily catch ups (as long as the kids are cooperative).
  • My fave movie of all time: Steele Magnolias. It might be a tear jerker, but after you watch it a hundred times, you begin to appreciate the humor and don't even think about crying. My fave line from the movie: "I smiled at the son-of-a-bitch before I could help myself" --Ouisa
  • I enjoy being outside - gardening, and sometimes just soaking up the sun. We plant a fair size garden every year. This year we'll hope for a little more time to actually enjoy the garden goodies. I also like to plant lots of flowers!
  • I'm a professional procrastinator! If you need any pointers on procrastinating, let me know.....I work best under pressure!

3) pass this award to 8 other individuals that I have recently discovered

4) leave a comment so that they can pass along the recognition!

Thanks Kelli for the award!

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Some day's ya got it....

...some days ya don't!


So, it all started when I saw this card on Betsy Veldman's blog. I've been following her blog for years - she's a genius - of course she is - she's a fellow Iowan, and a Paper Crafts Go to Gal! She has it going on! I loved the card she created - so I thought that I would try to make a duplicate with Stampin' Up! product. Well - that proved to be quite a challenge. Like, an ALL day challenge! UGH! Here was my first attempt....

It's alright. Just not all that striking.

I do love the little bees that I used - so cute. For this card I used the Sale-a-Bration set Sweet Stems - for the stems and bees, and the Cheap Talk set for the flowers. I just didn't feel satisfied. Back to the drawing board - about 6 more times! Then I came up with this.

It's a little better. (ya - my photog skills were lacking and I cut off the top of the card. Again, (in my best Randy Jackson American Idol voice) it's just aw-ight dawg. But this one is probably the best one of the bunch. I think I need to go back and add a heart or some other image between the flowers as Betsy had done.

Really the only non-SU thing on this card is the felt and baker's twine. I am having a hard time using my baker's twine. I don't know why. I see it used all the time and love the look, but it just doesn't seem to speak to me when I use it?????

I couldn't find "the right" buttons for the center of the flowers, so stamped some (from Button Button). Looking back, I wish I would have heat embossed them with clear ep. I did pierce the center holes for authenticity. Also, I used my Versamarker on the inside of the button to give it some real feel.

I want to show you that I SERIOUSLY had to try, try again with this card:

So there you have it! Some days you just don' t have it going on!
Geez - it's been so beautiful here in Iowa - in the 50's which is unheard of for February in Iowa! Now the weather gal just said that we'll have THUNDERSTORMS tomorrow with winter returning on Monday with a vengence! Really. I was getting used to the idea that spring was right around the corner!
Okay - must get to bed.....
aren't you glad you stopped? Do you ever not have it going on? Do you give up or push thru it???? Leave me a comment...

Friday, February 18, 2011

I've fallen....

....but I'll get back up! I know, I KNOW - I promised that I'd blog more in 2011. This month has been horribly crazy. I've dealt with three sick kids - one who was sick twice! And now I'm just getting over the flu, that I had for 3 days! ICK! I'm so ready for spring so I can open up the house and air this place out. Since I started staying at home, we've rarely had sick kids, and in fact I've been healthier than normal, but this month has been full of germs. For two weeks now, I really haven't spent a whole lot of time in my stamp room. I did stamp some Valentine's tags that Will colored for his preschool treats and, have had a couple of workshops, with quite a few more coming up. PLUS - a big GIRLS NIGHT OUT at the Boulder's Inn in Denison on February 26th. If you are attending - we'll be making a cute little something, something that involves CHOCOLATE! If you aren't signed up to attend, well, it sounds like you may be out of luck. I spoke with the organizer this morning and it sounds like the hotel is booked up and they've had to call in a 4th massage therapist just to be able to handle all of the massages going on! It'll be grand fun. I've also got a big event in Sioux City on March 5th to prep for. So, I'll be spending a bit more time in my stamp room over the next weeks!
But for now....I'm off to bed! Gotta get some rest while I can....sorry - no goodies to show today. Hopefully I can get a photography session in tomorrow!

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

How NOT to Cook Your Big Shot

We all know that the Big Shot is smokin' hot.....but peeps - DO NOT DO THIS!!!!!

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Sweet Sunday Sketch

Wow - it's been so long since I took part in a sketch challenge. And ya know, with being snowed in and all, I thought I'd have the chance to get a TON of stamping done. Especially since Andy was here to help with the kiddos. But, guess what I got to spend two days doing instead? TAXES! Oh the joys! Anyone else put off getting their tax stuff together? Eww! and UGH! In the midst of it tho, I decided that I needed a break and whipped up a card for Karen's Sweet Sunday Sketch. It felt so good to challenge myself a bit.

This one I'll be putting in my stash for a Graduation Card - I think I'll have a few to go to (and this is the most prepared I've been in YEARS! But, the evolution of this card started with the DSP - and then I just went with it! It's how I start most of my cards - with DSP. How and where do YOU start your cards? What gives you inspiration? I'd love to hear - leave me a comment. I love this paper - unfortunately it's not SU - it's from October Afternoon. But everything else is SU. I die cut the pennant with my Silhouette....sweet Silhouette! The sentiment was die cut with my Big Shot and some nestie dies. While I love my Silhouette - I have to say, it's much quicker to cut something with my Big Shot!!!!

Recipe -
Stamps: Word Play
Paper: Kraft, Not Quite Navy, October Afternoon DSP, Poppy Parade, Kiwi Kiss, Very Vanilla
Ink: SU Markers

Remember when....

Don't these two stamps just GO together??? That truck is from the Countryside stamp set. The images in this set are so nostaligic looking - and fun to color. I know Copics are the "IT" marker to color with, however, with a little practice you can achieve a similar look with your Stampin' Up! markers, some watercolor paper and a blender pen. It's not all that hard. I know a lot of people start with the lightest colors, but I'm an opposite type of colorer. I start with the darkest, shadiest spots and drag my color to the lighter areas, so that I don't over saturate my light areas. I can always go back and add color to the dark areas if I need to. The water color paper does allow you to remove color if you need to, but I want that to be a last ditc effort.

Isn't that truck a beauty? Andy and I are always talking about how we wish we had our Grandfather's old pickups. I don't know what Andy's Grandpa had, but my Grandpa had an old Chevy (I think) that was white with a big red stripe down the side. For some reason I want to sa it was a '57, but I could be wrong. And it was a stick shift on the floor. I remember that it even had a choke throttle that he'd have to use once in a while. I loved tooling around the countryside, checking crops in that pickup. Usually the dog got to ride in the cab with us too! Ahhh, the memories!

I opted to use clear embossing powder for the sentiment. It just really made that sentiment POP on the Kraft paper (aka Crumb Cake).

Pretty sweet - huh!

Stamps: Countryside, Word Play
Paper: Kraft, Watercolor Paper, Greenhouse Gala DSP
Ink: Jet Black Stazon, Versamark
Accessories: SU Markers, Blender pen, Clear EP, heat gun, Vintage Trinkets
Techniques: Watercoloring