Thursday, October 28, 2010

Vegas Baby....

Drove over the new bypass bridge today.  Totally fast & easy.  No view of the dam which I guess is a good thing since who needs looky loo's getting into accidents that high up off the ground.  Visited Scrappy Do, Viva Las Vegas Art Stamps & Scrappin' Time.  Checked into the hotel and had a stupidly expensive dinner.  Mel's gonna kill me for that one......

If you're in the area, come see me in the morning at Scrappin' Time.  I'll be demoing the Copic markers and airbrushing system and how cool they work with the Spellbinders dies and new Grand Calibur.

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Sharing a few cards

It's been a few days since I've visited the blog but never fear!  I haven't abandoned it!  Just been a super busy weekend.  Demoing & 2SGNO was on tap for Saturday and birthday parties galore on Sunday.  Our youngest niece, Kaytey, was celebrating her 3rd birthday at Rio Vista park.  Sadly we were only able to stay a few minutes as it was my birthday too (I am sooooooo going to spoil her since she shares my birthday!) and had people coming over to grill, chill & watch football.  Mel & I went a little crazy buying presents for her (please see the above statement) and I had a blast creating her card.  I did that Saturday night.  Here it is.

Yep, that's stitching all the way around it!  Was a lot easier than you'd think.  Just remember the turtle and that slow and steady wins.  ;)  The flower is a major favorite!  I'd just cut off the long sleeves of a shirt we got in California when we visited a few months ago and figured why not use that since it was right in front of me?!  My favorite Spellbinders Nested Poinsettia dies, a big button and some tulle and viola!  While I was pretty impressed with the card, I can't say the same for Kaytey.  Though she did seem pretty taken with the baby doll, two diaper bags, swing, carrier, highchair, stroller and assorted little pieces we got for her.  Again, refer to that statement about spoiling her.  :)  The adorable outfit, not so much.  Give her time though!

Supplies: cardstock - pink - Bazzill, green - Core'dinations, button - Autumn Leaves, floss - DMC, fabric - shirt, tulle - craft store

Another recent creation was for PTI's Oct Blog Hop.  I wasn't able to get it uploaded in time for the hop but I still like it and wanted to share it.  

It's pretty simple but I think that's one of the things I like most about it.  I printed the sentiment on the computer, double framed it with the square frame from the Framed set and added a gorgeous red & black pearl & rhinestone flourish.  Hard to see in the crooked scan but it's on a white 5x7 card base.

Supplies: card base & env - TPC Studios, cardstock - WorldWin, ink - TPC Studios, flourish - Prima, stamps - PTI, font - CK

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Papertrey Playhouse Challenge #3

Michelle Wooderson a.k.a. Mish, Mishee, Mish Mash - is one of my very favorite sources of inspiration.  I stumbled upon her blog from Spellbinders.  And got hooked.  Me who never had any interest or desire to read a blog was checking back each day to see what Mish had to say or check out her vintage finds or be inspired.  Mish is probably one of the reasons I started blogging.  And she's definitely the reason I started checking out and then buying Papertrey Ink stamps.  And then I found the forums over there.  And decided to jump in with both feet.  So not being very knowledgeable about blogging and having previously had even less of an interest in participating in blog challenges - I joined a newly formed blog group.

So far it's been kinda fun.  But my turn to pick & post the blog challenge came up quick!  I wasn't even thinking about how many challenges we'd have already done (or not as the case is) when I choose my date to host.  So here I am, starting to panic a little and decided to turn to tried & true sources for inspiration.  Nichole's blog always features such amazing cards the "Morning After" a release.  And then I went to the new release galleries to see what else could be found.

And was struck by all the tags the design team created as part of their very different projects.  Tags have been a favorite of mine for ages.  So there it was.  My challenge.  Create a card that featured tags.  And as an added twist, it should be inspired by one of the PTI designers.

Here's my entry for the challenge.  Inspired by none other than Mish of course.  I grabbed scraps - the red patterned piece was from a swatch book I picked up at CHAS from October Afternoon - a favorite of both of ours, the blue flower was a left over from a notepad a made a while back, another Mish inspiration.  The green backing is actually two pieces glued together and then I  covered the seam with the blue patterned piece - clever huh??!  The cream cardstock for the tickets was still on my desk from the card I created for our second challenge.

Mish also tends to use a lot of tickets - something the Just the Ticket stamp set was perfect to recreate! She also likes to embellish her tickets - lots of times with felt flowers and buttons. And lots of times her tickets are found on tags, kinda like the manilla tag here. One more PTI designer inspired detail is the ribbon tied with a Baker's Twine bow.  I just dig that.  I added the mini safety pin 'cause that's just something I often tend to do.

Can't wait to see what everyone else comes up with!  And even if you're not a member of the Playhouse I'd love to have you play along! 

Supplies: card base & env - TPC Studio, ink - TPC Studio, Just the Ticket stamp set & die cut - Papertrey Ink, red & white Baker's Twine - Papertrey Ink, blue ribbon - craft store, buttons - unkn, safety pin - craft store, manilla tag - American Tag Co, cardstock - core'dinations, patterned paper - October Afternoon, flower die cut - Quickutz

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Copic Swatch Book

I have to say this is probably my #1 favorite item from the Summer CHA show.  Yes, I loved plenty of papers, embellishments and other new products.  But this is just so stinkin' cool!  And no matter how small my purse is this baby goes in it!  You just never know when you'll happen upon Copics & I want to make sure I don't buy duplicate colors.

I'd been holding off coloring the cover of my Swatch Book but today seemed to be the day.  I pulled up Marianne's post about coloring her's to use for guidance.  I decided I wanted to do my own colors & I must say I'm pretty happy with it.

Colors used: text - B16; leaves & vines - G21, G24, YG63, YG67, YG03; flowers - V06, RV17, RV34; marker - C1, C3, C5, C7, BV23, BV31; shadow - B000

One more change to my swatch book.  I've found that when I'm in the store looking to see which colors I have I'm usually flipping back and forth to find the page I want.  Now I've got a color code on the side of each page so I can go immediately to the color family I'm interested in.

Tip: I've also made some notes on the pages to help me with a few things.  I need to know which colors are included in the papercrafting sets so I've added PCA or PCB next to each color to signify Paper Crafting A or Paper Crafting B.  I've also noted VI next to the colors I've got a Various Ink refill for.  That'll help me know which ones I still need to buy.  Tons of information right at my fingertips!

I've got some cash burning a hole in my pocket that I want to put towards more new pens.  I can't wait to pull my new & improved swatch book out to help me make my choices!

Monday, October 18, 2010

That didn't work out like I planned.........

So there I was, in front of the mirror brushing my teeth last night.  And decided I'd start running in the morning.  Got up, got dressed.  Dogs getting excited when they saw me putting on my tennis shoes.  Uh oh.  The dogs are going to be a PITA.  Then an idea hit me.  Go out through the garage.  Even if the dogs get past me they'll be trapped in the garage.  I'm so smart.  Go out through the garage, jumping over the beam so I don't stop the door coming down.  Yeah!

Stretch a little on the front porch.  And I admit it that I flipped off the dogs in the front window.  Childish but it felt good.  Started with a brisk walk and then a slow ugly looking jog.  Run then walk a little, turn around at the stop sign and do it all some more.  And on it went.  Until it hit me.  I didn't have a house key.  I'd gone out thru the garage and didn't need one.  Except the garage door wall thingy doesn't work.  How was I going to get in the house?  And I really needed to go to the bathroom.  Aaaahhhhh, the doggy door.  I'd gone in that way before.  I could do it again. 

Except the bloody thing shrunk.  How's that happen??  And the dogs thought it was the neatest thing.  Pablo yapping and sniping at all of us.  Harley & Davis licking me and running in and out of the door.  Payback for flipping them off I think.  What am I going to do?  No phone.  I really need to go to the bathroom.  Even f I had a phone I don't know anyone's number. UUgggggghhhhhhh!!!

Did I lock the bedroom door the other day?  I can't remember.  Try it.  Oh, thank goodness!  I didn't lock it!!  I'm in. So, note to self, even going out through the garage (good idea) make sure to unlock a door or bring a key so you can get BACK IN the house.

Let's see if my resolve to do a salad for lunch goes better than my running.

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Spent some time coloring this weekend....

This weekend was packed with some of my very favorite activities.  We got to go to the Centennial game Friday night.  Perfect weather and good times filled with good feelings.  Saturday morning bright & early at The Creative Quest for Copic Club - thanks ladies for coming!  Saturday afternoon was spent at the Coyotes/Red Wings game selling 50/50 raffle tickets for The Kenny Schall Memorial Scholarship Fund.  I had so much fun with it and amused Mel no end with my antics.  :)  Sunday started with waffles.  And had lots of football and Copic coloring in the middle.

I got 8 or 9 new markers this past week and have been itching to use them.  I wanted to share a few of the images I colored and a few of the things I learned while playing. 

This image is from Kraftin' Kimmy - it's the new Witchy Poo image from Annie Rodrigue.  Love her stuff.  Fun, playful and totally awesome for coloring!

Most of the time when I'm just coloring (which really means practicing and experimenting) I'll try to focus on one technique or concept.  I by no means, consider myself an expert with Copics but definitely feel that there's value in critically looking at my work and noting what I like and don't like about it.  It's the best way I know to improve.  I thought it might be of interest to others so I'm sharing it here.

I wanted to work on putting highlights in the Witchy Poo images as well as practicing more on skin & hair.  This is such a perfect image to practice these techniques on.  One thing I discovered today is that I'm not good at leaving white space.  Just have a hard time doing it.  Even though I know that sometimes that's just what's needed to give the look I want.  So how to reconcile my need to color everything with the concept of leaving white space to show highlights??

After a little messing around I colored with the lightest color of my series in the areas I wanted to show the highlights, then went in with the mid color and then the dark color and blended them all together with the lightest color to smooth them out.  I liked some of those results like with my orange Witchy Poo's hat.  I goofed when I was coloring her skin though.  And was very happily surprised by the results of my attempt to "fix" it.  I've found that I really like E000 for overall skin tone and shading with R01.  I inadvertently pulled R02 and started shading away before I realized my error.  Yikes!  Witchy looked like she had a really weird sunburn.  I went back with my E000 and started trying to pull the R02 out.  While I may not like the overall effect I do like how her cheek looks.  A little shading which was needed and a little like blush which gives a little more interest and dimension to her.  

Not thrilled with her hair but starting to find a method I like.  Witchy Poo 2 had me playing with one of my new colors RV17 - sooooo gorgeous!  I really liked her hair.  It still shows some highlights but not with a white spot which is just hard for me to do.  I was also fairly pleased with the overall color.  Red is  apparently not only the most difficult color to maintain in real life but it's the hardest hair color to recreate.  Leave it to me to always do things the hard way.

I found that I also really liked how R39 blended with the RV17.  But not so much with how it blended with RV14, R37 or R35.  Those images won't be getting uploaded to the blog though.  :)

I didn't particularly care for the leaves in my pumpkin & acorn filler image (Papertrey Ink's Friendship Jar Fall Fillers) but I do like the pumpkins overall and really liked the B000 shadow around it.  I have to remember to do that more and want to find more colors I like for this technique.  I also tried my highlighting technique in reverse - putting the darkest color down, then taking my mid color over it and further out and finally bringing my lightest color over them to finish the smoothing and add the highlight.  This gave me a smoother blend and used less ink, both good things.

A few more newly discovered color combos I really liked: B02 & B05, B34, B95 & B99, R39 & R37, B66 & B99, Y26, YR21 & YR12, E51 & E30 and E42 & E31.  Would love to hear some of your favorite combos.  I want to create a sample book and would like to have a section on color combos to refer to.

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Copic Club this weekend

I've just posted the cards for Copic Club at The Creative Quest this weekend under the Class Projects tab.  The samples will be in the store this afternoon.  And I know what I'll be creating for next months Copic Club!  Look for those samples on the blog and in the store as soon as I get the images.  Now to work on Dec's cards.  I'm hoping to stay ahead of deadlines not behind them going forward!

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Papertrey Playhouse Challenge #2

The 2nd challenge at Papertrey Playhouse was to create a card with black & white and a pop of color.  I decided to interpret that a little loosely and used black & cream.  Mostly because I had Foof A La's Red, Black & Cream line on my desk from a project earlier this week.  I'd been hoarding this paper & the matching embellishments for over a year but finally had a project it seemed perfect for.  A really fun perpetual calendar that I'll have for sale at the Craft Fair on Nov 6.  So with the scraps still littering my desk and the challenge in mind, I created this card. 

I'm delighted with it.  It's actually pretty simple but doesn't look like it.  Gotta love cards like that.  Even if it did get scanned a little crooked.

Supply List: card base & env - TPC Studios, ink - Tsukineko, Copic - W1, stamps: Friendship Jars, Friendship Jar Fillers, Mega Mixed Messages - Papertrey Ink, dies: sm label Papertrey Ink, lg label - Spellbinders,  patterned paper - Autumn Leaves, cardstock - unkn, ribbon - May Arts, embossing powder - Mark Enterprises, adhesive - ZipDry, foam squares, stitching

Monday, October 11, 2010

What a weekend!

Wow!!  Great weekend.  Lots of chillin' like a villain.  Some of my very favorite moments:

- Winning the football pool.  As the only female in the pool I feel like I've got to represent.  And boy howdy! did I represent this week.  Woo Hoo! The winnings just about cover the participation cost for both of us to this point.  How's that for cool?  No more listening to Mel complain about how much it's costing him.  :)

 - Saw Jack Johnson Sun evening.  So cool.  Love the laid back, chill vibe I get from him.  I'll be downloading his new album To The Sea soon.  And I got to go with one of my favorite people.  That made me happy too.  Good time, good conversation and a good memory.

I'm not a big fan of tiny, blurry, dark cell phone photos but between needing blog fodder and wanting to have something besides the tickets to scrap, well, I couldn't resist.

- Finalizing plans to participate in a craft fair next month.  There will be 4 - 5 of us sharing booth space so it should be fun.  I've got the details on the Events schedule.

- So happy to have signed up to represent 2 new companies.  I CAN'T WAIT to start showing off these products and see them in stores.  You'll love them!

- Played with my Copics Saturday evening.  Check out one of the images that will be featured in my Copic class on Saturday on the Class Projects tab.  I'll be grabbing the remaining bits & pieces to complete the cards tomorrow.  And trying really, really hard to get the images and cards done for Novembers class sooner than the week OF class!

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

"You're Spoiled." he said...........

After some impromptu running around this afternoon with my youngest niece, we were on the way home when I mentioned that she likely wouldn't see Mel since he was going to be practicing with Ritchie.  Both of us were surprised to see his truck in the driveway.  Both of us literally walked into the front door after we found it locked.  Weird.  Get it unlocked and there's Mo.  He kept following me around & I couldn't figure out why.  Walk into my office, drop my purse on it's hook, sit in my chair.  Mel's still looking weird.  I saw something on my desk and asked him "What's this?".  "I don't know." he says.  I hold it out to him so he can see it better and still the blank look.  Then I face forward.  And literally jumped. 

Sitting right on top of my filing cabinet was a new HUGE 32" flat screen tv.  "Happy Birthday!" he said.  And explained how Tonya & I nearly caught him running down the hallway with the old tv to hide it. Surprised hardly describes what I felt.  We'd talked about getting a different tv for in here but I never really thought much about it.  Apparently Mel had been.

He even said maybe he'd see about getting the HD cable and a DVR in here for me.  And then he said "You're spoiled."  With a smile.

                                    Is that such a bad thing??

Monday, October 4, 2010

Papertrey Playhouse Challenge 1

Much as I've wanted to play lately it just doesn't seem like I've been all that happy with the results.  One thing that I've been struggling with is the first Papertrey Playhouse challenge.  Since this is the first time I've participated in something like this I'm going to chalk my uncertainties up to wanting to make sure I play well with others.  :) 

And since one is rarely enough, I created 2 cards in a theme.  Book paper is a big favorite of mine and I used it for the patterned paper on my cards.  I also embossed one of the backgrounds with the PTI book print impression plate.  Love those things.  But found that it's difficult to use on papers larger than the plate.  Anyone have any suggestions for this as I tend to prefer larger cards?

Supplies: card base - TPC Studios, cardstock - unkn, book print - vintage unkn, felt - craft store, ink - TPC Studios, buttons - Fancy Pants, flower - prima, floss - DMC, stamps - Framed, Mega Mixed Messages PTI, patterned paper - Melissa Frances, stitching, Impression Plate - PTI book print, adhesive - ZipDry

Look for a holiday wall hanging soon.  Mel found a great frame when we were at Ikea yesterday and made sure I grabbed a few to create with.  Gotta love a guy that's on the lookout for crafty projects and class possibilities.

Sunday, October 3, 2010

Tucson Times

Mel & I went to Tucson for the weekend.  We left late Friday afternoon and once we got clear of the Phoenix traffic it was AWESOME driving with the top down in the Camaro.  This pic is of Mel when we were checking out this morning.  We had such a great time at The Big Blue House.  If you're ever needing to stay overnight in Tucson, you should stay here.  We had such a great time.  It was so pretty and had such a laid back, chill vibe that was pretty much perfect.  Each of the rooms has a kitchen and hanging on the porch was so cool.  Miss Lea says that the first weekend after Halloween is not to be missed.  Huge Dia de los Muertos celebrations and a parade goes right down the street in front of the house.  Sitting on the porch with a few adult beverages is a great way to observe the goings ons.  I'm going to try to talk Mel into.  Sounds like a pretty cool way to celebrate our anniversary if you ask me.

We'll have to make sure that that trip get us to Tucson early enough on a weekday so that we can do the tour at the Airplane Boneyard.  We were at least able to drive along side the fence on base and check some of it out - again pretty cool to have the convertible since that made it extra easy!  

Here's one plane that caught Mel's eye.  Wonder why?  

Now I'm in my office, watching football.  Badly needing the Bears to win so I'll tie for first place in the football pool and contemplating creating something.  Hopefully for the Papertrey Playhouse and Dawn.