Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Kristina Challenge and Stampin' Up! Convention!

Hi everyone,

Oh my goodness, I can't believe it's been so long since I last blogged. Thank you to my loyal followers, I'm still getting a few visitors each day so I appreciate that! I've had a crazy couple of weeks, I'm off to Stampin' Up!'s Australia/NZ 2009 Convention in Canberra this week with some of my team, so have been busy getting ready for that. I've made 70 swaps! I haven't forgotten you all though - I have two things to share tonight, and will have loads more when I get back next week! Sorry, no sneak peeks of my swaps, I don't want to spoil the surprise for the other Demonstrators I'm going to swap with on Friday. But I'll show you what I made and what 70 of them looks like on my return, the photos are all ready to go!

Tonight I'm posting my entry for Kristina's 50th Colour Inspiration. Wow, she picked a real tough one - for me anyway! I like all of the colours she picked... I just wouldn't normally use this combination. I really struggled this time, I think I have already packed my mojo into my suitcase for Convention, ha ha!

Seriously though, I heard some news yesterday about a lovely lady that I met back in December, she's been having a rough time lately. I wanted to make a card to send her and let her know that I'm thinking of her, so I pushed myself to use Kristina's Challenge to start me off. I had trouble finding just the right stamps to work with, until I fell back on one of my favourite "fall to" layouts that are handy when you're really stuck. The layout for this card was inspired by Donna over at Butternut Sage Designs (hi Donna!), it was one of her earlier Paper Cuts cards, #2 in fact. You really have to see her entry for the 50th challenge (click here), wow you should have seen my jaw drop when I saw what she made, is she super talented or what!!

So anyway I used the new Good Morning Sunshine DSP, punched out with a 1 1/4" square punch and layered on Chocolate Chip scallop squares. The circle piece uses a stamp from Good Friend to match the paper, which I stamped in Tempting Turquoise and punched out using the 1 1/4" circle punch and layered on a 1 3/8" circle in Real Red. For dimension I added a large clear button tied with Real Red 1/4" grosgrain ribbon and stamped the greeting from the hostess set Best Yet at the base of the card. The greeting looks a little wonky because of the angle I took the photo at, but it's straight, I can assure you! I'm not entirely sure about this card - its got way more white than I normally use, but then when you have trouble with the colours the trick is to use lots of white, so what do you think?

I would have used dimensionals under the squares but this has to fit through the post, so with the button I couldn't add any more thickness! TIP: the hardest part of this card is getting the squares lined up straight. To make it easier, cut a couple of thin strips of cardstock to make a cross and use Dotto temporary adhesive (love that stuff!) to adhere it to the front of your card. That will help you line the squares up, and then you simply remove the strips when you're done and rub the adhesive off. I SHOULD have done that, but noooo.... I chose to make it harder on myself - I used the Dotto on the squares instead and stuck them down and moved them around until I was happy enough, then adhered them one at a time with permanent adhesive. Oh well, it looks close enough, right?

The second project I have to share with you tonight is my "bag tag" for Convention. If you can picture 450 demos all in the same place, all with the same bag, well that's just asking for trouble! So Stampin' Up! suggest that we make ourselves a tag that we can tie on our bag when we check in, and then we'll be able to find it more easily should we happen to put it down somewhere. I have been itching to use the new Curly Label punch bundle (yahoo!) so I just had to break that open! I hand-cut the tag shape using the pattern that Stampin' Up! gave us (it matches the Top Note die that the lucky US and Canadian demos have!). I just reduced it on the photocopier to a couple of different sizes.

Here's the recipe for my tag:
Stamps: Cute & Curly
Ink: Riding Hood Red, Chocolate chip marker
Cardstock: So Saffron, Whisper White
Other: Washington Apple DSP, Flower Fusion (felt flower), silver brad, Stampin' Dimensionals, Curly Label punch, Riding Hood Red Taffeta ribbon (mmm... don't you just love that ribbon?!)

Enjoy the rest of your week, I'm off to Convention, yippee!

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Kristina's Colour Inspiration Challenge #49

Hi everyone,

Time for another Kristina Challenge! This week it was also a bit of a "limited supply" challenge for me as well, as I just grabbed some supplies from my stash as I headed off to my parents' place for the afternoon with my daughter, forcing myself to use what I had on hand when I got there! I wanted to use some brand new stamps, and embellishments as well, so I've done that much to my delight! Don't you just love the new Filigree brads? I had to use one in this card - just one mind you, didn't want to overdo it! I've decided that this year, I'll actually USE the stuff I keep buying, instead of just buying and drooling over it. So stay tuned to see more of my new stuff in the coming weeks/months!

This colour challenge really was a challenge for me. I can't remember the last time I made a card with black in it, can you? I have sold quite a few black ink pads since joining Stampin' Up!, but I must admit that my own black ink pad gets limited use - and here again, I didn't use black ink! It stains worse than the other colours, and I'm really fussy with my stamps...

Anyway, my Mum also thought the colours were challenging but I think she quite liked the card I managed to make and photograph on her outdoor table before the light faded too much. No artificial lighting for my photo this week! I'm reasonably happy with the end result - it's one of my busier cards, but I think the bunch of flowers works OK together, what do you think? The new in-colour ribbons are just beautiful to work with, and I love that one of the Petal Pizzazz flowers punches out beautifully with the scallop circle punch, I didn't have to cut that one out by hand! It was also the first time I've worked with Pacific Point - it wasn't my favourite of the new in-colours but it's really growing on me. That's the dominant colour in Kristina's challenge photo, so I used that as the dominant photo for my card too.

Stamps: Petal Pizzazz, Best Yet (Level 1 Hostess set)
Cardstock: Basic Black, Whisper White
Ink: Pacific Point, Rose Red, Kiwi Kiss
Other: Good Morning Sunshine DSP, 1 1/4" circle punch, Scallop circle punch, Kiwi Kiss Striped Grosgrain ribbon, Filigree brads, Stampin' Dimensionals (lots of them!)

I really love the fonts and sayings in the Best Yet set. It's fast becoming one of my favourite word sets for this year, and it only saw ink for the first time today! You can't buy this set, you have to earn it by hosting a qualifying workshop or place a qualifying order yourself. Click here to contact me and discuss how you can get this beautiful set for your own collection!

Happy Easter everyone!

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

New Catalogue swaps

Hi everyone,

As promised I'm back to share the swaps that I made last week and swapped with my team-mates on Saturday (hi guys!). Wow the standard was so high this time, fabulous work everyone!

Anyway here's my little contribution. We were to use anything from the new catalogue, so I pulled out a couple of sets that hadn't previously seen ink before. I used the very cute Its a Loop Thing stamp set which is part of the Level 3 Hostess set - Hand Drawn Bundle, on page 23 of the catalogue (e-mail me if you don't have a copy yet!). You can see some of those images most easily in the photo of the back of my little pocket card. Enjoy Every Moment was the other set I used, it was first available in NZ in the Spring Mini catalogue we had last year, but as I didn't get around to using it back then, I was so delighted that it made it through to the new catalogue - now I have a year at least to use it, before it retires!

The colours I used were Chocolate Chip, Tempting Turquoise and Pixie Pink. I'm not normally a Bold Brights girl but I wanted to make this bright and cheerful. And of course I used plenty of the divine Chocolate Chip 1/4" grosgrain that has been added back to the catalogue after a year away. So glad it's back, it's one of my favourites!

The flower in the centre of the "o" has a silver brad through the centre and is popped up using a Stampin' Dimensional. And I used the scallop edge punch too, as I'm sure you can tell. This card has a yummy square of chocolate in the pocket inside, but it would be perfect for a voucher or one of those gift cards you use like a credit card, or anything else of a similar size.

Thanks for stopping by, hope you've enjoyed my latest creation!

Sunday, April 5, 2009

Kristina's Colour Inspiration #48 - an oldie but goodie!

Hi everyone,

I can't tell you how glad I am to be able to enter another Kristina challenge - I really missed doing these! Or perhaps I just missed being able to squeeze in the time to do them, March was such a hectic month for me.

Anyway, I love the colours she picked this time - and so happy to able to get hold of the same colours that the USA has (well for now until they get their next catalogue!). This colour combination immediately reminded me of my favourite masculine colour combo which is Chocolate Chip with Brocade Blue and Old Olive. Reasonably similar combination really since Kiwi Kiss is a lighter shade of Old Olive, well I think so!

Given that I was thinking masculine card when I saw the colours, I decided to pull out my "most" masculine set. I'm still waiting for my own order from the new catalogue to arrive, so aside from my little preorder of a few stamps and the new colours of ink and cardstock, I'm a little restricted for the moment after the huge number of sets that retired! Lovely As A Tree is a gorgeous set, I'm so glad it made it through to the new catalogue as I really didn't make the most of having this set for a good part of last year. I got too distracted by my more girly sets, I know!

For this card I've used the baby wipe technique to add colour to glossy cardstock (I know the "ground" looks almost yellow, but I swear, I used Kiwi Kiss for that part!), and then stamped over the coloured piece with Chocolate Chip ink. I love how crisp and clear the detail stamps out with this stamp (click on the photo to make it larger) - just beautiful! Really shows off the high quality of Stampin' Up! stamps, I think.

I had a look through the only new pack of DSP that I have on hand - Good Morning Sunshine - and this yummy piece of Chocolate Chip paper is one of the patterns in the pack. Just the thing as it isn't so busy that it distracts from the main image. I'm really excited to be getting Chocolate Chip Patterns DSP in the new catalogue too - although the price has been corrected to $19.95 for our packs of 12 sheets of double sided papers, it's still great value and I plan to keep using it by the tonne!

The greeting is from Cheer & Wishes, one of my favourite word sets which made it through from the last catalogue. It doesn't quite fit the word window punch so I just stamped it on a strip of Whisper White cardstock and fed it through the back of the 1/2" circle punch to round the ends nicely. I love that our punches can often be used in more than one way, it makes them such a great addition to your craft stash! I used Stampin' Dimensionals to raise the greeting up a little, and tied it with the linen thread. I love to use ribbons on my cards as you'll know if you've visited my blog before, but for a "bloke's" card the linen thread is a nice option, not too girly!

If you don't have the new catalogue yet, click here to e-mail me and lay your hands on a copy.

Thanks for visiting, please do leave a comment as I love to know what you think of my creations!

Thursday, April 2, 2009

It's finally here!

Hi everyone,
Well today Stampin' Up! launched the new 2009-2010 Idea Book & catalogue, and it's a beauty! As I mentioned in my previous post, I have supplies of the new book and they are jumping out of my hands pretty quick is all I can say. Not to worry as I did order quite a few in anticipation!

If you haven't ordered one from me yet, click here to e-mail me, or if you simply can't wait to see it, click here to see the online version.

I'll be back soon to show what I've been working on - I'm doing new catalogue swaps with my fabulous team this coming weekend!

Happy Stamping!