Friday, December 11, 2015

Family Emergency

I won't be posting for the next while. My mother is ill and I need to attend to her so my blog will not be updated for an indefinite period of time.

When I am back to creating again, my posting will return to a normal schedule. I have actually been dealing with this for a month already but several posts were previously scheduled.

Thanks for understanding.

Alyson

Monday, December 7, 2015

Atlantic Hearts Sketch 137

The sketch this week at Atlantic Hearts made me spend some significant time developing my artwork... I also learned some key things about my Cricut Explore machine in the process - like what I can and can't do with the Slice feature. I learned that I can't slice a circle on a card from Art Philosophy due to the score line on the card... I had to use just a plain rectangle instead. I also learned - after I had lined up 9 circles on my rectangle - that the slice tool will only cut ONE circle at a time! There may be shortcuts to doing this of which I am unaware but it took me forever to create the open circle background! 

Then I had to find stamps that would fit into the 1 inch circles... 

So, here is my card - I probably should have used a neutral background instead of a patterned one but such is life...


Products used are all Close To My Heart

Paper: White Pines Paper Pack, Cocoa Cardstock, Colonial White Cardstock
Stamps: Polar Bear Holiday (ret.), Merry & Bright (ret.), White Pines Cardmaking Workshop, Reindeer Bells, Perfect Fit Holidays
Inks: Glacier, Cranberry, Black, Fern, Cocoa
Accessories: Art Philosophy Cartridge, Red Shimmer Trim, Green Shimmer Trim, Green Triangle Enamel and Glitter Duos, Thin Foam Tape, ShinHan Markers, Clear Sparkles Assortment

Enjoy, 
Alyson


Tuesday, December 1, 2015

December Stamp of the Month Blog Hop - Candlelight Garden


Welcome to December's Stamp of the Month Blog Hop! This month, we are featuring the stamp set "Candlelight Garden" - a set of 10 stamps. This set of stamps is terrific for creating cards for friends or scrapbook pages to honour friendships. The bloggers along this blog hop will show you several ideas, so sit back and enjoy the tour. 
You should have arrived here from Lauren Moore's blog.
If you get lost, a list of all blogs can be found here.

The stamp set looks like this.



I love one of the sentiments in this stamp set - specifically the sentiment that reads, "A friend is one who overlooks your broken fence and admires the flowers in your garden." I thought I would create that sentiment literally and actually create a broken fence with a garden below. It wasn't quite as easy as I anticipated... Those flowers are difficult to cut around and the fence took some time. I cut the pieces and then ran them through my Cuttlebug with the woodgrain embossing folder. Distressing the edges was tough considering how small they were. Then, it was a matter of layering them to create a "broken fence" appearance... I tried cutting the flowers from the bottom as well but they fell apart so the second time, I opted to cut only from the top. They looked funny without some sort of ground cover which led to the grass at the bottom.


I hope you enjoyed my project. 


The next blog on the hop is Katy Taylor's blog.
I'm sure she has something wonderful to share with you.

You can get this stamp set for just $6 this month with a $50 purchase. 

Visit my shopping site here
Remember this stamp set is only available until December 31st! 

Products used are all Close To My Heart

Paper: Kaleidoscope Paper Pack, White Daisy Cardstock, Whisper Cardstock, Pixie Cardstock
Stamps: Candlelight Garden
Inks: Memento Tuxedo Black Ink, Slate, Desert Sand, Pear
Accessories: Clear Sparkles Assortment, Woodgrain Embossing Folder, Edge Distresser, Sponge Daubers, Foam Tape, ShinHan Markers: Marigold, Golden Yellow, Leaf Green, Sap Green, Lavender, Peony Purple, Tender Pink, Cherry Pink

Enjoy, 
Alyson

Monday, November 30, 2015

Heart 2 Heart - 'Tis the Season Challenge

This week at Heart 2 Heart, the challenge is "'Tis the Season". Obviously it's Christmas time but the actual challenge is to use a product or products featured in the Close To My Heart Holiday Expressions Catalog. I love almost everything in that catalog so this was a tough decision for me. One of my favourite stamp sets is the stamp from the White Pines Cardmaking Workshop on the Go kit. The wreath is my favourite stamp in that set, so I decided to focus on that. 

I also love monochromatic or minimal colour cards - so that was my second focus. Christmas cards in non-traditional colours is a third love of mine - so why not combine all three elements? 

Using White Daisy and Peacock with a touch of Silver, the design for this card was taken from Make It From Your Heart, Volume 1. The wreath was heat embossed and the background was random stamped with some of the smaller images from the same stamp set. It didn't take long to do and I love the end result. 


Join us at Heart 2 Heart and show us your favourite products from the Holiday Expressions Catalog. You have until the end of December to enter any of the December challenges. 

Products used are all Close to My Heart

Paper: White Daisy Cardstock, Peacock Cardstock, Silver Glitter Paper, Enchantment Paper Fundamentals (Peacock)
Stamps: White Pines Cardmaking Stamp Set
Inks: Peacock Pigment Ink, Versamark
Accessories: Clear Detail Embossing Powder, Silver Embossing Powder, Heat Tool, Peacock Fundamentals Assortment

Enjoy, 
Alyson

Monday, November 23, 2015

Atlantic Hearts Challenge 135

The sketch at Atlantic Hearts this week is one that I decided to rotate as I much prefer cards that sit vertically rather than horizontally. 

Since Urban is one of the featured paper packs in the month of November, I thought I would use that and I also have some male birthdays coming up, so that was a perfect fit. The Artistry Cricut Cartridge provided the "tag" and I also decided to add some Glacier cardstock to the Urban colour palette.  

Since this birthday card is for an older gentleman, the Birthday Funnies stamp set was perfect for this card! I love the sayings in that stamp set as they are sarcastic but not over the top. 

I chose to use two pigment inks - Slate and Peacock - to stamp the sentiment and then emboss it using Clear Detail embossing power. 



Join us at Atlantic Hearts Sketch Challenge this week and show us your interpretation of the sketch shown above. 

Products used are all Close To My Heart

Paper: Urban Paper Pack, Peacock Cardstock, Glacier Cardstock, Whisper Cardstock
Stamps: Birthday Funnies
Inks: Slate Pigment Ink, Peacock Pigment Ink
Accessories: Artistry Cricut cartridge, Peacock Fundamentals Assortment, Grey Enamel Gems, Glacier Thick Twine, Silver Foil Tape, Foam Tape, Clear Detail Embossing Powder, Heat Tool

Enjoy, 
Alyson


Friday, November 20, 2015

Cut & Shave Layout

I don't create layouts very often any more... This one was done for a family that means a lot to me. They own a hair salon and I have known them for several years. Ever since I moved to this area over 15 years ago, I have been going to the same wonderful lady to get my hair done. They recently renovated the salon and included a special men's section. It is truly a family business with their nephew working there as well.. I stopped in a few days ago and took a few pictures with the idea of doing a layout for that section of the salon. This is what I decided to do... 

I wanted something very neutral and not too complex, so I stayed with black and white but added a touch of gold for sophistication. As you can see, the men are dressed in black and white. The CTMH Cricut cartridges were perfect to add just the right icons - the sign, moustache, scissors and profile. 

I love the way this turned out and I hope that they will as well. 


Products used are all Close To My Heart

Paper: La Vie En Rose Paper Pack, White Daisy Cardstock, Black Cardstock, Basic Fundamentals Paper Pack (Black), Gold Glitter Paper
Stamps: None
Inks: Slate
Accessories: Art Philosophy Cartridge, Artiste Cartridge, Artistry Cartridge, Black Sparkle Flourishes (ret.), Black Small Sparkle Flourishes (ret.), Bling Gems Gold Assortment, White Enamel Stars, Black ShinHan Marker, Foam Tape, Thin Foam Tape, Black Designed Decor Shadow Box

Enjoy, 
Alyson



Monday, November 16, 2015

Heart 2 Heart - Watercolour Challenge

The challenge this week at H2H is watercolours... EEK! This is NOT my strength and when I saw this challenge, it scared the pants off me! I put it off as long as I could until I knew I would have to face it and deal with it... 
Painting has always been a fear of mine as I have never been able to do it well. I almost failed grade 8 art because of it (yes... absolutely true) and never took art after that time. I have watched a lot of videos and tried various techniques and none have really worked for me but I thought I would try a watercolour wash... It didn't exactly turn out as I had planned... 
Mine ended up looking more "painted" than a wash... however, it was usable and that's what matters at this time, so at least I was able to create something that I could use! And it even sort of matched two palette colours - Thistle and Pear - BONUS! 
I added some Shimmer trim and a few embellishments plus my sentiment - not quite as scary as I thought - and I have a usable card in the end. Maybe I'll spend some more time with the paints and see what else I can do :) 


Join us at Heart 2 Heart and show us your watercolour skills - they HAVE to be better than mine! You have the rest of the month to enter any or all of the November challenges. 

Products used are all Close To My Heart

Paper: White Daisy Cardstock, Thistle Cardstock, Pear Cardstock
Stamps: Perfect Fit Birthday
Inks: Eggplant, Pear
Accessories: Art Philosophy Cartridge, Artistry Cartridge, Watercolour Paints, Watercolour Brushes, Purple Shimmer Trim, White Shimmer Trim, Thistle Thick Twine, Purple Hearts Enamel and Glitter Duos, Thin Foam Tape, Foam Tape

Enjoy, 
Alyson

Monday, November 9, 2015

Atlantic Hearts Challenge 133

The sketch at Atlantic Hearts this week is a layered sketch - I am not sure how you would do this without using layers upon layers... 
I counted all my layers and in total, there are 13 layers on my card! That can make for a very heavy card, but I did cut out some of the centres to help to make it a bit lighter! 

I wanted to use a colour scheme that I stumbled on a few weeks ago that I really liked - purple and yellow. Plus, I am really loving the Paper Fundamentals and with that being a huge focus this month at Close to My Heart with the Constant Campaign, I thought I would focus on that for this card. 

I followed the sketch very closely, just extending the sentiment and the border to the edges of the card. 



Join us at Atlantic Hearts and show us your interpretation of this this week's sketch. 

Products used are all Close To My Heart

Paper: White Daisy Card Base, White Daisy Cardstock, Eggplant Cardstock, Saffron Cardstock, Thistle Cardstock, Purple Glitter Paper, Enchantment Paper Fundamentals (Eggplant), Whimsy Paper Fundamentals (Thistle)
Stamps: Look to the Light
Inks: Eggplant
Accessories: Art Philosophy Cartridge, Artiste Cartridge, Thin Foam Tape, Purple Hearts Enamel and Glitter Duos

Enjoy, 
Alyson


Thursday, November 5, 2015

Urban Thanks Card

I need some masculine thank you cards - and I always find masculine cards difficult to create. For this one, I went to the trusty Make It From Your Heart books - they always have such wonderful patterns available. Although ribbon is used in the original pattern, I decided to pleat some paper instead to stay with a more masculine appearance on the card. I actually sewed the pleats under the gold tape just to hold them together. 
One tip for anyone who uses a sewing machine to stitch on layout or cards - make sure there is NO ADHESIVE where the needle is going to stitch - that can gum up your machine and damage it very, very quickly. Repairs can be extremely expensive. You can apply temporary adhesive around the areas that are to be sewn but make sure no adhesive will come anywhere near that needle! 


Products used are all Close To My Heart

Paper: Urban Paper Pack, Colonial White Cardstock, Saffron Cardstock
Stamps: A Thousand Thanks
Inks: Saddle, Peacock
Accessories: Gold Foil Tape, Peacock Fundamental Assortment, Blue Dot Enamel and Glitter Duos, Off-White Thread and Sewing Machine 

Enjoy, 
Alyson


Monday, November 2, 2015

Heart 2 Heart - Through the Window

The challenge this week at Heart 2 Heart is Through the Window. I love window cards and there are so many interpretations of them out there - they can be cards like the one I did below or they can be 3-D cards with sliding mechanisms of various types, pull out cards, cards that open in the centre to reveal a window - you name it. The possibilities are endless! 

I have to say that this card took me over 8 hours to create - not because it is a card that SHOULD have taken that long by any means - but I just had one of THOSE days. You know those days when everything that can go wrong does go wrong? If you want a good laugh at my expense, I would like to tell you my story. It wasn't so funny at the time but looking back on it now, it really is pretty amusing... I will post the card first in case you just want to see that and move on. The story is below.


I started out looking for a window template on Cricut Design Space on one of the CTMH cartridges - I wasn't able to find one, so I tried to create one using a window from Artbooking and some edges from Artiste and welding them together. Anything that I was able to create looked far too ornate for a window frame. Nothing looked right. I tried square tops, bracket tops, rounded tops - everything looked funny. After about 25 attempts, I finally realized that it would just be easier to search for window frames and purchase one already made. Done. After wasting about 90 minutes, that was finally accomplished. 

Next task was to find holly that would fit on the base of the window frame. That wasn't too hard - Artistry has a decent holly branch that worked and I copied it twice and sized it accordingly. I knew I wanted red berries for it but I wouldn't be able to cut those with the Cricut but I had an idea for later... 

After cutting both images way too large the first time, I cut them a second time and then set about creating the background with embossing folders. I forgot about the grain of the cardstock with some of the CTMH folders and how it can rip apart the cardstock if it doesn't go with the grain of the folder... Well, after running one piece of 5x7 White Daisy cardstock through my Cuttlebug with the stripe embossing folder, it had several tears in the paper... Let's try again. But I didn't check the grain - I just stuck another piece into the folder and did the same thing again - not a second time but 3 more times! I don't know where my brain was hiding... Seriously!!! Finally on the 5th try and a new sheet of cardstock, I finally got it right - only to turn around and do the SAME thing with the Pacifica cardstock - and not once but twice! Good thing I have lots of cardstock! 

Then I began the process of preparing the background that would sit behind the window. I knew I  would have to do some experimenting here so I took a scrap piece of White Daisy (and yes, I actually had some left after wasting much of it in the embossing process...) I started with the sun - Canary and Honey inks. I had the sun the way I wanted it - yeah! But this was the trial piece. Then I started to work on the blue background. I was using Crystal Blue and Glacier. It became darker and darker and then I decided to add a darker colour - Pacifica. That didn't go well as it was WAY too dark. Scratch that piece. Let's start again. New sun - ok. Crystal Blue and Glacier - no Pacifica this time - good. Add the trees - Topiary with spots of New England Ivy applied with a sponge dauber - ok... looking good. I think that's what I want. I just needed a circle punch to punch a piece of masking paper to cover the sun once I sponged that so I didn't get any blue ink on that. Now, where on earth did I put the masking paper? Search begins... I KNEW I had it somewhere. I thought I pulled it out before I started this project. I only needed one piece and I had one small piece that I removed from the package and I had already pulled the edge of the backing paper off so I wouldn't have to fight with it later - now where did it go? And the search continued... I still couldn't find it. Meanwhile, I had to make side trip to the bathroom to wash the ink off my hands before I started to work on a new sheet of paper and then I found Mika (my dog) wandering around - and she had a piece of paper attached to her nose! IT WAS MY MASKING PAPER! And then she ran! The little monster! I cornered her and grabbed my paper off her nose - she's too cute to punish for something like that! 

Back to the inked background - now the good copy. The sun goes ok and all the other parts are stamped and inked alright until I decided to add some orange to the sun. Out comes the Goldrush ink pad. I tried to do this using a sponge dauber and it went on dark - way too dark. Blend, blend, blend! More Honey! Blend! Try to make it look like a late afternoon sun... blend more... it's not working... I don't want to redo this whole thing again! It's just going to have to do the way it is - I am NOT redoing it! (Can you hear the panic in my voice because that is exactly how I was feeling!?!) I will try and place the frame as high on the background as I can to keep the sun as far out of it as possible. 

Next was to work on the holly pieces. I wanted to back the open leaves with New England Ivy cardstock. This was SMALL paper piecing for sure... I traced one and then traced that for the other 5 pieces. They were way too big. They take a LONG time to do. For the berries, I figured I could use a regular hole punch and just punch holes out of a piece of Cranberry cardstock and use the punched pieces. Well, hole punches KEEP the punched pieces inside! Have you ever tried to get those punched pieces out? They don't come out - EVER! I tried - without success. I finally had to resort to emptying my big hole punch - and it was filled with a rainbow of coloured pieces. I didn't want to do it on my desk as pieces might end up between the cracks where my desk joins so I did it on the floor - MISTAKE! Mika was right in there. And those little pieces end up everywhere with every movement! I needed 10 red pieces. By the time I had shooed Mika away several times (and she is such an affectionate dog so she always wants to be with me or near me), she had her nose in there and was covered with confetti and it was all over my office floor. I had plenty of red pieces but the mess was incredible! Confetti was stuck to everything that has any sort of static - my clothes, her body and all over her nose, my floor mats for my sliding chair, under the floor mats, EVERYTHING! I had to sweep several times and then get the Swiffer duster out to pick up all the leftover pieces and I am STILL finding pieces today (the next day) around the house that have attached themselves to things and have been dragged around to various places. 

Using detail glue, the pieces were attached to the berry locations on the greenery and then attached to the window ledge. The last thing to do was to attach the embossed pieces to the card base and then the white cross pieces to complete the wainscotting. I had cut one cross piece but I wanted a second piece to lower it slightly as it looked a bit too high. Rather than measuring the width, I decided to eyeball the width and cut a second piece. Four tries later, I finally cut the correct width again - it would have been easier to measure and cut once (the old handyman saying - "measure twice and cut once"... 

Finally, the window was attached to the card and the sentiment was stamped (without incident) and attached to the card and it was DONE! 

Who would have thought that a seemingly so simple card would have taken 8 long hours to complete? Not me! 

------------
Products used are Close To My Heart unless otherwise indicated

Paper: White Daisy Cardstock, Pacifica Cardstock, Slate Cardstock, Topiary Cardstock, New England Ivy Cardstock, Cranberry Cardstock
Stamps: Always Grateful, Festive Trees
Inks: Topiary, New England Ivy, Crystal Blue, Glacier, Canary, Honey, Goldrush, Pacifica
Accessories: Artistry, Cricut Design Space (not CTMH), Foam Tape, Stripe Embossing Folder, Scallop Embossing Folder, Sponge Daubers, Sponges

Enjoy, 
Alyson



Sunday, November 1, 2015

November SOTM Blog Hop - Cheers, 2016!


Welcome to November's Stamp of the Month Blog Hop! This month, we are featuring the stamp set "Cheers, 2016!" - a set of 17 stamps. This is a set of stamps designed to welcome the new year and all that goes with it. The bloggers along this blog hop will show you several ideas, so sit back and enjoy the tour. You should have arrived here from Lauren Moore's blog

If you get lost, a list of all blogs can be found here

The stamp set looks like this.



I am not a fan of making resolutions for the new year but a friend of mine is what I would call an addict when when it comes to that sort of thing. This year, I thought I would create a layout for her to accommodate her "addiction" and this stamp set was perfect to do that!


I close to use the Paper Fundamentals rather than a paper pack for this layout. It's hard to see in the photograph but the flowers and the large stars are cut from the Paper Fundamentals Cardstock and the side piece is also from that same line. The chevron background was done with a stencil cut from one of the CTMH Cricut cartridges - very easy to do.

I hope you enjoyed my project. 

The next blog on the hop is Priscilla Gotham's blog
I'm sure she has something wonderful to share with you.

You can get this stamp set for just $6 this month with a $50 purchase. 

Visit my shopping site here
Remember this stamp set is only available until November 30th! 

Products used are all Close To My Heart

Paper: White Daisy Cardstock, Sapphire Cardstock, Crystal Blue Cardstock, Hollyhock Cardstock, Enchantment Paper Fundamentals (Sapphire), Adventure Paper Fundamentals (Hollyhock), Whimsy Paper Fundamentals (Pixie)
Stamps: Cheers, 2016!
Inks: Sapphire, Hollyhock, Versamark, Pigment Inks: Sapphire, Crystal Blue, Hollyhock
Accessories: Artbooking Cartridge, Art Philosophy Cartridge, Artiste Cartridge, Foam Tape, Corner Rounder, White Embossing Powder, Heat Tool, Clear Detail Embossing Powder, Sponge Dauber, Blue Dot Enamel and Glitter Duos, Flamingo Dots

Enjoy, 
Alyson

Monday, October 26, 2015

Atlantic Hearts Sketch 131

This week's sketch at Atlantic Hearts calls for layers - can be a few or several, depending how you interpret the sketch. I chose to add several. I pulled out one of my favourite stamp sets - Wavy Blooms, but decided to use a colour that is not a favourite for me, but I thought I should give it a fair chance. That colour is Saffron. I tend to like the bolder, brighter colours. When I paired Saffron with Thistle, I rather liked the combination and adding Cocoa as a neutral made a big difference as well. 

Rather than trying to work in a paper pack, I decided to use the new Paper Fundamental cardstock for the patterned paper elements. The only Cricut cut was to weld together a square and a border for the Saffron piece. 



Come and join us at Atlantic Hearts Sketch Challenge and show us your interpretation of this week's sketch. 

Products used are all Close To My Heart

Paper: White Daisy Cardstock, Saffron Cardstock, Thistle Cardstock, Basic Fundamental Cardstock Pack (Cocoa), Whimsy Fundamental Cardstock Pack (Thistle)
Stamps: Wavy Blooms, Banner Wishes
Inks: Memento Tuxedo Black, Cocoa
Accessories: Art Philosophy Cartridge, Artbooking Cartridge, Bronze Shimmer Trim, Thistle Thick Twine, Diamond Embossing Folder, Bling Gems Gold Assortment, Grey Enamel Gems, ShinHan Markers, Foam Tape, Thin Foam Tape 

Enjoy,
Alyson


Monday, October 19, 2015

Heart 2 Heart - Cricut Capers!

The challenge at Heart 2 Heart this week is to use your Cricut (or use some sort of die cut if you don't own a Cricut machine). Close To My Heart has the five BEST Cricut cartridges available anywhere! In the last 5 years, since the introduction of Art Philosophy, I think I have purchased two files for my Cricut machine in that entire time - otherwise, everything I have needed is on our cartridges! 

The card I chose to create is from an idea I found on Pinterest. 

I loved the idea that only part of the front was embossed so I searched how to create my own embossing diffuser (and promptly cracked my Cuttlebug machine while embossing... not a good thing!) I did manage, however, to emboss only the section of the card that I wanted to emboss :) 

The spray pen was another adventure - I don't have the Eggplant reinker yet so I had to mix THREE reinkers to get a close shade of purple (using Gypsy, Thistle and Pacifica). It took many tries to get a shade that was relatively close and you should have seen my white porcelain sink by the time I was finished... 

The Cricut cuts were the EASY part! A butterfly, two different vines and a banner and that's it - our Cricut cartridges make it SO easy! Add to that a few clear sparkles coloured with a ShinHan marker and that's it! 


Join us at Heart 2 Heart and show us your creation using the Cricut (or other die cuts). You have until the end of October to submit your entries. 

Products used are all Close To My Heart

Paper: Sangria Paper Pack, Eggplant Cardstock, Champagne Cardstock, Fern Cardstock
Stamps: Say it All
Inks: Eggplant, Reinkers: Gypsy, Thistle, Pacifica
Accessories: Artistry Cartridge, Art Philosophy Cartridge, Chevron Embossing Folder, Spray Pen, Clear Sparkles, Bitty Sparkles, ShinHan Marker - Sap Green

Enjoy, 
Alyson 

Saturday, October 17, 2015

Thinking of You Cards...

These 4 cards were created in an afternoon -  my friend at my church who provides cards for individuals who are ill or who have lost someone close to them is in desperate need of cards at the moment and I told her I would create some for her. I found some fairly easy ones on Pinterest that I could create and just used the same style with stamps and supplies that I had on hand. I saw her this afternoon and she was thrilled with them and they will last for at least a couple of weeks until I have a chance to create some more for her. 




For this last card, I painted the flowers using a mixture of Pearl Paint and Lagoon Reinker. 


Products used are Close To My Heart unless otherwise indicated: 

Paper: Jackson Paper Pack (ret.), Seaside Paper Pack (ret.), Skylark Paper Pack (ret.), White Daisy Cardstock, Colonial White Cardstock, Lagoon Cardstock, Cocoa Cardstock, Thistle Cardstock, Gypsy Cardstock
Stamps: Flirty Scrapbooking Workshop (ret.), Card Chatter - Sympathy (ret.), Say it All, Thoughts and Prayers (not CTMH)
Inks: Lagoon, Glacier, Cocoa, Desert Sand, Juniper, Gypsy
Accessories: Art Philosophy Cartridge, Artiste Cartridge, Bitty Sparkles, Bronze Shimmer Trim, Foam Tape, Antiqued Gold Ribbon Hangers and Brads (ret.), Juniper Ribbon (ret.), Lagoon Reinker, Pearl Paint (ret.), White Material Flowers (not CTMH), Cocoa Dotted Ribbon (not CTMH), Flourish Embossing Folder (not CTMH), Lagoon Ribbon (not CTMH)

Enjoy, 
Alyson

Tuesday, October 13, 2015

You're Awesome Card and a new method of photography...

With this card, I am trying a new method of photographing my artwork. I am having a hard time getting photos straight on to start with and shadows are always a problem for me as well as true colours at times. After exploring a lot of different blogs and looking at a number of Pinterest posts, I notice several cards are photographed from an angled view and that is what I am going to try to do for a while to see if I get some better results. 

This card is for a friend of mine who is having some personal struggles at the present time. She loves roses so I really wanted to include roses on her card. I also wanted to use the Ink Blot stamp as I love the fact that I can add that element without having to go through all the work to get that effect! I really wanted to use the Peacock Fundamental adhesive glitter elements but they didn't match very well - they were a brighter shade than the paper - maybe on a future project. I ended up going with the Aqua Dots instead. 


Products used are all Close To My Heart

Paper: White Daisy Cardstock, Kraft Cardstock, Peacock Cardstock, Eggplant Cardstock, Purple Glitter Paper
Stamps: Ink Blot, Just to Say Cricut Collection
Inks: Peacock
Accessories: Artbooking Cartridge, Art Philosophy Cartridge, Peacock Fundamental Assortment, Dot Embossing Folder, Aqua Dots

Enjoy, 
Alyson


Monday, October 12, 2015

Atlantic Hearts Sketch 129

It's an interesting sketch this week at Atlantic Hearts. I actually spent an enormous amount of time on this one because I didn't like any of my creations and even this one doesn't thrill me. However, I had to move on with other deadlines, so this is the one that made the final cut. I am also going to show you the first card that I made but the other 6 between these two made it to the recycling bin... It was a long process and I haven't struggled with a sketch so much for a very long time! 

I played a lot with the new Artistry cartridge before finally deciding what to do. I rotated the sketch and I really wanted to use the Sangria paper pack. I took some liberties with the size of and placements of embellishments.  



The card below was my first attempt but I did want to leave it here, just to show you what I was thinking... 



Join us at Atlantic Hearts Sketch Challenge and show us your interpretation of this week's challenge. 

Products used are all Close To My Heart (both cards)

Paper: Sangria Paper Pack, Colonial White Cardstock, Champagne Cardstock, Fern Cardstock, Sweet Leaf Cardstock, Pomegranate Cardstock, Eggplant Cardstock, Poppy Cardstock, Purple Glitter Paper
Stamps: Just to Say,,,, Cricut Collection
Inks: Eggplant
Accessories: Artistry Cartridge, Art Philosophy Cartridge, Green Shimmer Trim, Foam Tape, ShinHan Markers, Clear Sparkles, Green Triangles Enamel and Glitter Duos

Enjoy, 
Alyson

Sunday, October 11, 2015

Imitation Washi Tape Card

I saw this card on Pinterest and fell in love (insert heart here...) I have some cards to create for a woman at my church who provides cards for those in our congregation who are ill or have experienced the loss of someone and I knew I could make this design work for that purpose. I totally CASEd this from Wendy Weixler because I just loved what she did with it. 

I chose to use patterned papers from the Sangria paper pack and rather than tearing the paper, I used a rough scissor cut at the end of each piece. The Shower Flowers stamp set was perfect for this card.


Products used are all Close To My Heart

Paper: Sangria Paper Pack, Colonial White Cardstock
Stamps: Shower Flowers, Say it All
Inks: Eggplant, Pomegranate, Fern
Accessories: Corner Rounder, Foam Tape, Thin Foam Tape

Enjoy, 
Alyson

Saturday, October 10, 2015

Christmas Ornament Card and some REALLY Green Leaves!

I decided to play late last night and I found some inspiring cards on Pinterest that peaked my interest that I wanted to try. 
The first is a Christmas card that is so clean and simple. I loved the idea and the fact that there are so many possibilities that can be implemented with this type of card - the Christmas ball could be created as a shaker card, it could be backed with the Fundamental Papers for a very interesting look but I chose to use Glitter Paper. I wanted the background paper to match the Glitter paper so I used Thistle cardstock and Purple Glitter Paper. I simply wanted the sentiment of Merry Christmas - that is HARD to find on stamps these days. There are all sorts of other sayings but I had to go back to a retired set called Holiday Wishes to find a reasonably sized "Merry Christmas" to add to this card. 
The original designer is Loll Thompson and you can click on her name to go to her website. 


The second card that I really loved was one with some leaves and just a simple sentiment. The original designer, Bev, did hers in a bluish-grey colour. I loved the shimmer on the leaves and I chose some leaves from the Artistry Cricut cartridge and embossed them. A simple sentiment paired with two Artesian Studs and this card came together really quickly. I rounded two corners and mounted the front on foam tape to set it off a bit from the base. 


Products used are all Close To My Heart

Paper: White Daisy Cardstock, Thistle Cardstock, Pear Cardstock, Purple Glitter Paper
Stamps: Say it All, Holiday Wishes (ret.), Adornable (ret.)
Inks: Black, Versamark
Accessories: Artistry Cartridge, Art Philosophy Cartridge, Corner Rounder, Clear Detail Embossing Powder, Heat Tool, Artesian Studs, Foam Tape

Enjoy, 
Alyson

Thursday, October 8, 2015

Artfully Sent PML Greeting Cards

I decided to check out some card options on the Artfully Sent Cricut Cartridge. I was looking specifically for ones where I could use the Sangria Paper Pack to back images that were cut out. I found two that I really liked and they are below. 

Just because something appears "summery"in nature doesn't mean that it can't be made to look more like an autumn-based card if the colour scheme is changed. And these are the Picture My Life cards - designed to be put inside the PML pages. I just cut them slightly smaller than a card front and used them as cards instead. I didn't want the restriction of using only the cards that were provided on the cartridge so I decided to make my own instead. Both cards open from the side - I find that cards with a top crease often tend to slide open and don't hold their shape very well so I prefer this kind of opening instead. 



Products used are all Close To My Heart

Paper: Sangria Paper Pack, Colonial White Cardstock, Pomegranate Cardstock, Fern Cardstock, Eggplant Cardstock, Fern Fundamental Cardstock, Purple Glitter Paper
Stamps: Say It All
Inks: Versamark
Accessories: Artfully Sent Cartridge, Gold Embossing Powder, Heat Tool, Gold Adhesive Gems, Gold Shimmer Trim, Chevron Border Punch, Corner Rounder, Gold Foil Tape

Enjoy, 
Alyson


Monday, October 5, 2015

Heart 2 Heart - Sketch Challenge

Heart 2 Heart's challenge this week is a sketch - my favourite kind of challenge! Almost everything I create is based from a sketch of some sort - cards, layouts, anything. I am so non-creative when left to fend for myself... I find I need something to get myself started and a sketch is the perfect way! 

Sketches are NOT designed to be followed exactly, either. You certainly can do that if you wish, but they can be manipulated in many, many ways, Card sketches can be used for layouts and vice versa. Rotate them, add or delete items (unless you are entering a challenge and it clearly indicates what has to be present...), but make it your own! 

I chose to follow this sketch pretty closely, just because I really liked it and it worked for what I had in mind. The sketch can be seen below the card. 



Join us at Heart 2 Heart and show us your interpretation of this gorgeous sketch! You have the entire month of October to enter this and any challenges this month.

Products used are all Close To My Heart

Paper: Sangria Paper Pack, Colonial White Cardstock, Fern Cardstock, Pomegranate Cardstock, Poppy Cardstock
Stamps: Just To Say,,, Cricut Collection
Inks: Eggplant
Accessories: Artistry Cricut Cartridge, Artiste Cricut Cartridge, Art Philosophy Cricut Cartridge, Bronze Shimmer Trim, Gold Foil Tape, Bling Gems Gold Assortment, Foam Tape, Thin Foam Tape

Enjoy, 
Alyson



Thursday, October 1, 2015

October Stamp of the Month Blog Hop - Twinkle


Welcome to October's Stamp of the Month Blog Hop! This month, we are featuring the stamp set "Twinkle" - a set of 15 stamps. This is a terrific set of Christmas stamps with awesome potential for so many uses. The bloggers along this blog hop will show you several ideas, so sit back and enjoy the tour. You should have arrived here from Gina Brandstetter's blog
If you get lost, a list of all blogs can be found here 

The stamp set looks like this.

I chose to create a non-traditional colour Christmas card using blue and silver tones. I wanted to use several of the sentiments in the stamp set and I also wanted to incorporate some stitching on my card so I was able to do both of those with this design. 

Rather than using a paper pack, I opted to use the Paper Fundamentals Cardstock in Sapphire and use heat embossing to add interest to the card. I actually prefer anything other than red and green for Christmas - just a personal choice. 



I hope you enjoyed my project. 
The next blog on the hop is Dana Kessler's blog 
I'm sure she has something wonderful to share with you.

You can get this stamp set for just $6 this month with a $50 purchase.
(Please note that the price is shown incorrectly on the image where the stamps are shown 
- the price there is shown in US dollars) 

Visit my shopping site here
Remember this stamp set is only available until October 31st! 

Products used are all Close To My Heart

Paper: White Daisy Cardstock, Crystal Blue Cardstock, Sapphire Cardstock, Sapphire Paper Fundamentals Cardstock
Stamps: Twinkle
Inks: Versamark, Sapphire Pigment Ink, Crystal Blue Pigment Ink
Accessories: Artiste Cartridge, Artbooking Cartridge, Clear Detail Embossing Powder, Silver Detail Embossing Powder, Heat Tool, Silver Shimmer Trim, Bitty Sparkles, Foam Tape, Sewing Machine and White Thread

Enjoy, 
Alyson

Monday, September 28, 2015

Atlantic Hearts Sketch 127

I love the sketch at Atlantic Hearts this week! I decided to play with it and rotate it as well as change the shape of some things as you will see below. With the new Artistry Cricut Cartridge, I just HAD to play with some of the new shapes and this was the perfect opportunity... plus a sketch is meant as a starting point, not as a limitation as to what you can and can't do. 

I have a hard time with colours in the editing process sometimes... I use Pic Monkey and I could not get the thread to turn out in the yellow shade (the same as the center flower) that I used. It looks green for sure! Trust me, it IS yellow. The coloured sequins are yellow and glacier-blue, also to match the papers. I'm not sure how to get around those issues. Someday, when time allows, maybe I will learn to use Photoshop... in the meantime, green thread rules! 



Join us at Atlantic Hearts Sketch Challenge and show us your interpretation of this week's sketch. You have until Sunday evening to link up your project. 

Products used are all Close To My Heart unless otherwise indicated: 

Paper: Zoe Paper Pack, White Daisy Cardstock, Sorbet Cardstock, Slate Cardstock, Cranberry Cardstock, Sweet Leaf Cardstock, Canary Cardstock, Glacier Fundamental Cardstock
Stamps: Holiday Tags
Inks: Slate, Sorbet
Accessories: Artistry Cartridge, Artiste Cartridge, Green Triangle Enamel and Glitter Duos, Silver Sequins, Bitty Sparkles, ShinHan Markers (Golden Yellow, Turquoise Blue), Yellow Embroidery Floss (not CTMH)

Enjoy, 
Alyson

Monday, September 21, 2015

H2H Challenge - Doodle Away

The challenge at Heart 2 Heart this week is to doodle on your artwork. Now for me, this is something that I NEVER do! The only exception is that on about 2 layouts, I have drawn a border around my photo mounts - that's it. I cannot draw for the life of me and I had to think a little bit "out of the box" for this challenge. 

I decided to go with more of an outline approach - I chose an old but favourite stamp set and masked the images to create a grouping of flowers. I then outlined everything to create more dimension. My hand was SO unsteady as I was so nervous while doing this... 


Join us at Heart 2 Heart and show us how you doodle on your artwork. We would love to see your projects.You have until the end of the month to enter any of the September challenges. 

Products used are all Close To My Heart

Paper: White Daisy Cardstock, Pear Cardstock, Poppy Cardstock
Stamps: Dreams Come True (ret.), Lifetime of Happiness (ret.), Have a Happy Day (ret.)
Inks: Poppy, Pomegranate, Pear
Accessories: Corner Rounder, Black Journaling Pens (ret.) 

Enjoy, 
Alyson


Monday, September 14, 2015

Atlantic Hearts Sketch 125

The sketch at Atlantic Hearts this week is a very straightforward one - it can be just a simple two layer card or it can be extended to be much more than that. I chose to go somewhere in the middle. 

The Zoe paper pack is so awesome because it can be masculine or feminine, depending on the embellishments that are used with the papers. This card looked very masculine before the flowers were added. 



Join us at Atlantic Hearts Sketch Challenge this week and show us your interpretation of the sketch shown above. You have until Sunday night to get your entry submitted. 

Products used are all Close To My Heart

Paper: Zoe Paper Pack, White Daisy Cardstock, Glacier Cardstock, Slate Cardstock, Sorbet Cardstock, Sweet Leaf Cardstock
Stamps: Lovely Birthday
Inks: Glacier, Sorbet
Accessories: Artiste Cartridge, Coral Shimmer Trim, Foam Tape, Thin Foam Tape, Grey Enamel Gems

Enjoy, 
Alyson


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