Friday, January 30, 2009

Dahling! You're a Little Overdressed!

Well, this was supposed to be a super quick and easy demo for a little event I'm participating in tomorrow. And it started out that way - really! But then (sigh), it grew. But it is kinda fun!
I stamped the dress from Hero Arts new "Glamorous" set twice with black ink - once on a panel of Prism Brilliant White cardstock and once on this fun floral paper from Scenic Route. I cut out the skirt and most of the bodice from the patterned paper and adhered them over top the stamped image on white cardstock. Because I didn't feel like cutting around all the ruffles at the top, I coloured them with a red pencil crayon instead. Then, just as I was about to colour the sash with my pencil crayon (and this is where it all started to get off track), I thought it would be even cuter if I cut tiny little slits on either side of the waistline and tied a tiny piece of ribbon through it. And it was cute!
Really, I was pretty pleased with myself at this point, but... the plain brown cardstock panel I was going to mount it on just wasn't dressed for the occasion. So I decided to run it through my Cuttlebug with the Perfectly Paisley embossing folder because, really, despite the bad rep I still feel strongly that paisley is always appropriate! Now, I should have stopped there for the purposes of my demo, but I was really starting to feel this project - know what I mean?
So I made a 5.5 " square red card for the base and added a little hand cut wave out of some coordinating Scenic Route paper to layer on top. I added my stamped panel and it was looking pretty good but... if a girl is going to get all dressed up, she really needs some accessories, right? I just happened to have some citrine rhinestones from Kaiser lying around, so I applied them along the curve and well, there you have it - completely overdressed for the occasion!
So now I need to go back to the drawing board for my demo but... it was fun while it lasted!

So, This is a Little Distressing...

...on so many levels! This project began as an experiment inspired by a technique I saw on Tim Holtz's blog, using "Distress"Inks by Ranger. (Distress Inks/distressing - get it)? But even more distressing was looking at the pictures of my husband, Brian and I "then and now!" Twenty-four years of living leaves a few marks!

But seriously, I really love how this layout turned out. Believe it or not, it started out as two pieces of smooth white Bazzil cardstock. I created the background in layers. First, I used Tim Holtz's alpha masks to right on the white cardstock to spell out my title, then I inked the background using a really cool technique. I smeared some Broken China Distress Ink on a non-stick craft mat, then diluted it by spraying liberally with water. Then I rolled my rubber brayer gently through the puddles and applied it to the paper. When I had filled the two pages, I let it dry and did it again using Faded Jeans Distress Ink.

After removing the letter masks, I applied Peeled Paint Distress Ink to the edges of the paper and over the title using a Foam Blending Tool. I made the letters "pop" more by outlining with my Signo White Gel Pen. Finally, I added more texture and depth to my background by stamping the same Hero Arts swirl repeatedly in creamy brown and white inks and mounted the whole shebang on kraft cardstock.

The embellishments for this layout were cut out using my favourite Sizzix dies from Grungeboard. I coloured most of them using various Distress Inks and a blending tool, then highlighting a few of them with Distress Stickles. Except the bird. Again, I wanted to try a technique from Tim. This one involved painting the grungeboard with Pewter Distress Crackle Paint (after all, I didn't want to be the only one on the layout showing some wear and tear)! When dry, I was able to add colour by dabbing alcohol inks right over the crackle paint. In real life, it is very shiny and cool looking!

The layout was finished by adding the aforementioned distressing pictures, and some velvet scalloped ribbon from American Craft. Whew!

What I really love about this project is that I finally feel like I have successfully combined my two passions - stamping and scrapbooking -in a way that does justice to both.

LSC205 on Splitcoast

I thought I'd try my hand at this posting thing (Cathy has done it so far). This is a card I made for the Limited Supplies Challenge on Splitcoast Stampers (SCS) today. The challenge was to keep the card simple. I used Whisper White CS and the inks were Kiwi Kiss, Baja Breeze & Pacific Point. I absolutely love this new stamp set called Fifth Avenue Florals. I can see so many great applications for it and there are already loads of amazing cards on the SCS gallery with it. I still have trouble tying a bow for goodness sake, even though I know the left over right, right over left rule. Obviously, more practice is necessary! Anyway, I must get to my real job, so thanks for stopping by and have a terrific day!


Thursday, January 29, 2009

One Sheet Wonder - Take Two!

As promised, I tackled the same one sheet wonder template that Donna used and completed 15 cards that don't look anything like Donna's (not on purpose - it just turned out that way)! There are a couple of reasons why my cards look different.

First, I approached the whole project as an exercise in minimalism - which is just a really nice way of saying "lazy!" I started with a really neutral colour palette of Chocolate Chip, Bordering Blue, Very Vanilla and Grey - then punched it up with one really bright colour, Kiwi Kiss. This is a great way to draw focus where you want it without using lots of stamps and embellishments. Then I added interest and detail using a few selected images from the Stampin' Up sets "Always" and "Baroque Motifs." All of my sentiments are from the SU set, "Full of Life," and I made them the focal point of my cards.

Finally, I ended up altering the template here and there because I seem to be psychologically incapable of following directions and I kept snipping away and changing things up. Then I felt like using some of the great SU punches and..... I think you probably see where this is headed! So, I did a quick sketch of how the template would look now, with the alterations I made in case anyone wants to try reproducing my cards.

Thanks for looking!

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

It's a Miracle!

Every once in a while, I love to boost my card stash with a little project called the "One Sheet Wonder." Traditionally, you stamp a background pattern over an 8.5 x 11" piece of cardstock, then cut it into various sizes and shapes, and layer them onto coordinating card bases to create 8-10 cards in one session.

Well, I recently stumbled upon a virtuoso of this project called Mae Collins and I really liked what she had done with the concept. Mae used a 12x12 piece of patterned paper, created a template for 15 cards, and used stamps to add depth and embellishment to her cards. You can see her template and resulting cards here. Brilliant!

So Donna and I decided to each tackle one of Mae's templates individually and then compare what we came up with. I think the results clearly showcase our different strengths and styles! Today, we are featuring Donna's cards.

These are so gorgeous! Donna's style is very elegant and feminine with lots of beautiful details. She followed Mae's template very faithfully, using a palette of red riding hood red, kiwi kiss, very vanilla, and pirouette pink from Stampin' Up. The patterned paper and all the ribbons and embellies are also from SU. She used stamps from a wide variety of sets to create a collection that is truly for every occasion! When you look at the individual cards below, you'll see what I mean about her attention to detail. There are notched corners, inked edges, ink dyed fabric flowers (from the "pretties" kit), beautiful hardware (from the 'styled silver hodgepodge" kit, and - of course- lots of her favourite ribbons!


What I love most about the One Sheet Wonder challenge is that my cards look totally different, even though we started with the same template! Tune in tomorrow to see my take on this project!


Thursday, January 22, 2009

Welcome to the very first post of Chicks with Inkpads! We are Cathy and Donna and we hope you'll join us on a little journey to creativity.

Both of us are avid rubber stampers (going on seven years now). Donna shares her talent for cardmaking and stamping as a Stampin' Up Demonstrator. Cathy has been teaching stamping and mixed media projects at her local scrapbooking stores and was the owner of The Ink Spot - a rubber stamping store located in Oakville, Ontario.

It's been quite a journey so far, but we both love a good road trip! We think the journey is the destination and with stamping we both agree that the best part of any project is the process. We love to experiment with colours, images, papers and embellishments to find that perfect combination (or sometimes, just to see what happens)! So we hope you'll check in often as we share our journey and we hope you'll share some of yours too..

So I thought I'd start things off with a little canvas, I just made for Valentine's Day. It's got some painting, some stamping and some scrapbooky stuff all mixed up together and I kinda like how it all came out.

If you'd like to try a project like this one - it was super easy! I purchased an 8x10 canvas from Walmart and painted the whole thing with Stream Dimensional Pearls acrylic paint by Ranger. It's a beautiful colour and has a pearlescent finish that you can't really see in the photo. I used Butterscotch pearls to roughly paint a heart shape on the canvas and feathered it towards the outer edges of the canvas. Then I filled the heart shape in with Cranberry Pearls.

Now I've tried stamping on canvas before with poor results. So I stamped a script background stamp on torn scraps of translucent tissue paper with waterproof black ink, then decoupaged them where I wanted them with Mod Podge to the canvas. Really soak the tissue with your Podge and it will virtually "disappear" into the painted background. Cool, huh?

Once the background was prepared, the rest was really easy - I just made a collage with index sized prints of different things I loved ( my family, my dog, disco dancing, napping and road trips) Some ribbon, some sparkly rhinestones,a little chandelier tag and "voila" this project was ready for it's close up!

So, come on. Join us on the journey. I challenge you all to create your own project incorporating the things you love and put it on display!