Monday, 11 April 2016

Sad Symphony of Purple

This was my original thank you card, until it told me it wanted to be a 'sorry' card. Pretty and melancholic all in one go. I confess this has been brewing a long time, and sadly I think I coloured the flowers too dark so it's lost some of its clarity. Hey ho, it's all learning and I'll know better next time.

The flowers were stamped in versamarked and silver embossed, masking the central flower to bring it to the front. I then 'painted' them with distress ink, before covering them all up, and using a stencil as a mask to create the square in the centre. I trimmed it back a bit before going around the edge with a blending tool and then mounting up on grey. It's double mounted on a 'smooched' bit of card, using my various purple inks on my gelli plate, rather than using my craft mat, as I feel it gives me more control and more smoochability!

Just Add Ink #306: Just add Sympathy
Just Us Girls #338: Smooching (trend week)
Allsorts #358: Purple Passion
CAS on Sunday #80: Flowers
Clarity #38: Masking

Merci Beaucoup

I needed to make a card as a thank you to a lovely friend who hosted me on holiday, and made one then at the last minute changed my mind as to the sentiment. This was take two, quick, easy and prettily effective.

The zingy colour palette is from CAS C&S (thank you ladies, fantastic challenge as always, definitely sorry I'm not able to play along every week), and I'm going to unapologetically enter this as Addicted to Stamps and More for 'Holiday' week, although you may say it's not close enough to count :-) With the sentiment centre stage I'm also entering in a 'new to me' challenge focused on words.

The sentiment is coloured with pencils onto a old book page, and the background is distress inks brushed onto good quality cardstock.

CAS Colours and Sketches #168: Melon Mambo, Tangerine Tango, Daffodil Delight

Addicted to Stamps and More #188: Holiday

House of Cards: Use script and/or colour combination (I chose script without colour)
AAA Cards #62: Anything Goes

Thursday, 24 March 2016

Grungy honeycomb

Most of the inspiration for this card comes from Stamplorations. I made it a couple of weeks ago for a friend, and the palette was then a current one, not so any more!

It's a bit grungier than normal for me, but I like the effect. The honeycomb is texture paste through a stencil, coloured with ink. The stamp is a Clarity stamp, coloured with Spectrum Noir pencils, and then distressed around the edge of the topper.

Stamplorations - March CAS (optional colour twist = yellow)
Stamplorations -  March Theme and Sketch (stamps and texture)
Addicted to Stamps and More #186 - Anything Goes

Monday, 21 March 2016

Easter Chick

This sweet little chap is another one of my collection of Clarity stamps, as is the egg behind him. I think I bought a bunch of Easter stamps last year, but haven't used any of them before. The plethora of Easter changes allows me to remedy that fact.

The colour challenge over at Just Us Girls is precisely that, a challenge. You may have noticed that I don't really do pastels, and I've also left my alcohol markers stranded in a box, so I fished out a few bits to do something different (for me at least).

I've included Addicted to CAS in my 'pile' of challenges as I think the colours are delicate, as is the leaf work in the egg, and adorable chick.

Just Us Girls #335: Pink, Purple, Yellow (Pastels)
Addicted to CAS #84: Delicate
Sweet Stamping: Easter
Allsorts #355: Easter
AAA #60: Easter
Friday Mashup #245: Easter (Sorry to hear this is the last MashUp)

Christmas Scene

I'm going to ask forgiveness from the conventional challenges today, as I enter another Christmas card into a ordinary challenge before Easter! I couldn't resist the Red/Green combo at CTD for this lovely (embossed) Holly Stencil. I then built the image in the centre in this lovely shade of lavender. The colour really does make me think of summer hedges of that beautifully scented flower.

One Layer Christmas Card #28
Color Throwdown #384 - Lavender, Red, Green
ABC Christmas - F is for Frills/No Frills (I went for the No Frills, CAS, one layer option)
CAS on Sunday #79 - Stencil it
Jingles Belles - Christmas Past/Vintage

Musical Interlude

I wanted to make a thank you card for a musical acquaintance of mine, who happens to be a lover of Edward Elgar's music. So the music represented on this card is an accurate representation of the opening chorus of his Oratorio The Apostles (The Spirit of the Lord is upon me). Perfect music as we approach Easter, and an I anticipate an unexpected twist on 'E'. I was going to stamp the staves, but it didn't work, so it's hand written instead (takes me back to childhood music theory classes!).

The hand made background, and layering piece, were made using ink on a gelli plate. The sentiment was enhanced using Spectrum Noir pencils

CASology #189 - Doodle (my doodle is the hand written music)
Colour Q #333 - Always Artichoke, Kiwi Kiss, Gumball Green, Old Olive
Just Add Ink  #303 - Just add 'E' (My E is for Elgar)
Shopping our Stash #243 - O Me Lucky Charms  (I've gone for the mostly green option)

Monday, 14 March 2016

Strutting his stuff

A young chap I know has a birthday this week, and I wanted something simple, arty and most definitely not feminine, I hope he thinks this fits the bill :-)

The cockerel stamp is from Clarity, and I've coloured it using the ColourQ palette with Spectrum Noir pencils. I've flipped the CAS on Sunday sketch, and added some grass with some little texture stamps.

Colour Q #332 - Brilliant Blue, Calypso Coral, Coastal Cabana, Summer Starfruit
Sweet Stamping - Boys to Men

Simon Says Wednesday - A bit O'Green
CAS On Sunday #78 - Sketch

Sunday, 6 March 2016

Pretty in Pink

This card is the product of a variety of challenges, first and foremost of which was a lightweight card to send abroad.

Yesterday Sketch Saturday was a nice simple layered piece, so there I go again and decide to 'faux' layer it. I won't say it's my best attempt, in fact this is definitely not one of my best cards, but it works, and I learnt various things as I went along. With more time it might have developed differently, but I'm quashing my perfectionist streak, and saying 'good enough', and good enough to share. It's not as if I'm getting to get another chance to enter some of these challenges before the deadlines have come and gone.

It hasn't photographed very well, but you might just be able to make out some embossed flowers around the edge, which have been been brushed over with ink creating the resist effect.

Clarity #37 - All about the Girls
Allsorts #353 - International Women's Day
Sketch Saturday #402
Sweet Stampin' - Unusual Coloured Hair
Color Throwdown #382 - Hot Pink, Teal and Black
Simon Says Wednesday - Touchy Feely (Add some texture)

A slightly Italian Christmas

Christmas greetings in March. Forgive the dorky blog title, but I couldn't help thinking of the Italian flag as I coloured in the sentiment of this card!

Anyone who takes even the tiniest bit of notice of my blog on an ongoing basis has probably noticed by emphasis on colour. My biggest challenge is when palettes combines similar colours with different tonal bases, e.g. red and pink, or in this case cucumber green and mint/teal. Gets my brain going, and is probably good for me!

I'm finding it very therapeutic having the continued motivation to make Christmas cards all year round, so it was nice to be able to 'smash a few challenges' together with this card. I'll be honest I thought I'd made an almighty mistake when I added the snowflake. Then I abandoned it, went out for a few hours, and came back resolved to try and make the best of it. I'm glad I did, I'm proud of it now.

Shopping our Stash #241 - no white paper
One Layer Christmas Card #27
Addicted to Stamps and More #183 - Holidays
CAS Colours and Sketches #163 - Cucumber Crush, Real Red, Mint Macaron
Holly Jolly #66 - Add a sentiment

Monday, 29 February 2016

Can I move in?

This stamp makes me think of the Magic Faraway Tree series of books by Enid Blyton that I loved as a child. Blank it also makes me think of the Elvish homes in the Middle Earth books (The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings) by JRR Tolkien - not so much when I've coloured it this garishly!

The palette is inspired by Colour Q, but I confess I may have gone off piste by using so much brown as a neutral. If that's the case, apologies, and please forgive me for posting it up just the same because I'm so proud of it and want to share it. I'm always amazed at the colour saturation you can get with Spectrum Noir pencils.

I knew I had to do something with this stamp, in other words, get it out of the packaging for the first time with Addicted to CAS' 'Home' keyword, and in honour of it's inaugural use I've chosen to share it over at SSM as well, and it would also make a perfect New Home card.

Addicted to CAS #82 - Home
Simon Says Monday - "Take a leap into the unknown"
Colour Q #330 - Poppy Parade, Daffodil Delight, Tempting Turquoise, Lucky Limeade
Stamplorations February - CAS (Optional colour twist is Red)

Her favourite flower

In the UK this is our week for remember the special women in our life, as it's Mothering Sunday this coming weekend. For one special lady in my family the freesia is one of her favourite flowers, so it seems appropriate to tag this card up to her today.

The image on this card was originally inspired by a now closed colour palette. When the closing date passed the colours morphed slightly as I continued to work on it!

A couple of weekends ago, in response to this months' Clarity Calendar Challenge (mutters under breath, did the practice, haven't made the card yet - closes at 8pm tonight!!) I was experimenting with the shaving foam technique for making backgrounds, and when I made this card up to the FMS sketch today, decided this piece was a good fit. See what you think. Sorry that the picture isn't quite in focus.

Freshly Made Sketches #225
Sweet Stampin' - Mother's Day/Special Lady
Simon Says Wednesday - Anything Goes

Turn over a new leaf ...

... well, a leaf of an old dictionary in this case.

I've managed to go on a crafty splurge this weekend, so this is the first of a few cards to get posted today. I won't bore you with the details, but suffice to say my crafting this weekend was restricted to a handful of stamps and my tins of colouring pencils, and that seems to have had a positive effect. One - I've managed to produce some artwork! Two - I really feel that I'm starting to get the hang of this colouring in lark and am producing things I'm proud of. Three - Spectrum Noir pencils are great - IMHO

Until not so long ago I veered away from buying open line stamps, because I didn't feel competent to do justice to them, so feeling able to tackle something like this beautiful Clarity Columbine flower is somewhat of an achievement for me.

I stamped it up in either Coffee or Potting Soil archival on to an old dictionary page, and coloured it in using this week's palette at Color Throwdown. I then further distressed the page by gently tearing the edges and inking them up with Tea Dye distress ink. Last but not least I layered it up onto a background made using the 'shaving foam' technique.

CASology #186 - Distress
Color Throwdown #381 - Pink, Light Green, Kraft
Addicted to Stamps and More #182 - Make your Mark

Monday, 8 February 2016

Sending you my love

I made this card a while ago, but chose not to blog it at the time.It strikes me that it would make a lovely subtle Valentine's card, but could also be put to other purposes. (Being completely honest, I made it as a sympathy card)

It uses a couple of stencils, layered on top of each other to create the background, some inking in the centre to create the landscape and a beautiful Clarity stamp with a selection of their wonderful word chains to pull it all together.

Just us Girls #329 Word Week: Valentine
Clarity #36: Love
Simon Says Wednesday: Have a Heart

Holding Hands

OK, so this card is a little more in the Valentine's spirit.

I hadn't had a go at the 'book page' technique in a while, and got inspired after watching Barbara Gray demonstrate on Hocanda yesterday.

My first attempt wasn't all I'd hoped for, so I had another go and I think it came out better after I rearranged the colours, and put less ink in the background. I don't think I'm allowed to submit two entries at CTD, so I'll pop it at the bottom in case anyone's interested.

It's an interesting challenge figuring out depth of colour, as the text shows through when you use Spectrum Noir pencils. I love the effect, but it's a balancing act so that you don't lose the impact of your stamped image.

Color Throwdown #378: Red, Pink, Dark Grey, Pale Blue
Friday Mashup #242:  We have heart
Addicted to Stamps and More #179: Clean and Simple

The original attempt, in which I felt Douglas didn't stand out enough in his dark grey suit.

Star Haloed Santa

I confess I rather like the challenge of a one layer card, and the perpetual AG One Layer Christmas card challenge is a good motivator.

Now it's quite typical for me to get inspired by a challenge, but not finish it before deadline, which is the case with dear old Santa here, so he's showing his CAS credentials instead.

As you'll all have seen there are 'lots' of Valentines challenges on the books at the moment. I'm rather partial to a bit of optional twisting, so here's a February 14th palette with Christmas spirit.

Santa's halo is a stencil, embossed through my Grand Calibur, and then Espresso Adi and Broken China distress ink applied to the replaced stencil. The Santa round is coloured with Spectrum Noir pencils.

Colour Q #327: Kraft, Cherry Cobbler, Ruby Red, Pool Party
Allsorts #349: Clean and Simple
One Layer Christmas Card challenge #25