Saturday, 19 December 2015

Reindeer Card Cuteness

After making the gift tags for the ladies who attend my classes I was inspired to use that same idea for a match book style card. I needed a quick card that could hold 2 message panels as a thank you card for someone special from my aunt and I. Here is what I came up with.

It was super easy to make. I cut an A4 piece of cardstock in half lengthways and scored along one short end at 3cm. I used the Curvy Corner trio punch on the corners of the other short end. After folding up on the score line and securing the inside with tape, I simply folded the top down, tucked it into the match book part and then used a bone folder to give a nice crisp crease.

You can see the 2 message panels inside. The front one is just cut 1 cm shorter in length so that a message can be stamped on each one. This type of card is perfect for when you have a few people wanting to write a message or to put a gift card into. The trees are from the Peaceful Pines stamp set and the words are from Holly Jolly Greetings.

There was not really a plan when I decorated the front. I started off with an offcut of Winter Wonderland DSP, added the Cherry Cobbler mat to that, attached it to the Soft Suede card front and stared at it for a while until a idea popped into my head! The Whisper White panel matted with the Cherry Cobbler was left over from something else and worked perfectly. See.....sometimes there is a reason for having things strewn around your work table! I like the different sized borders. Mixing up the proportions of your layers adds a bit of interest. I attached my last reindeer clip to the Whisper White mat then added a candy dot for a nose. Before adhering the 'merry' from the Christmas Greetings thinlits set I placed it where I wanted it to go then moved it up 2 mm. That allowed me to stamp using the Holly Jolly Greetings set and get it to perfectly line up. If I glue first then stamp I invariably get ink on the die cuts. I can see lots of variations on this card design for birthdays and other occasions.

Thank you to all of my loyal followers who have sent me messages. I am still on the medical merry go round having tests done and seeing different specialists - hence the fewer than normal posts. I'm sure that I'll be back on deck with more posts in the New Year.
I just wanted to take this opportunity to thank you all for you support and  to wish you a very Merry Christmas and hope that 2016 is a really fabulous year for you all.
PS. - remember in this last week before Christmas that Santa would like to hide in your craft room from time to time for a sanity break! 

Monday, 14 December 2015

Reindeer tags

I made these cute reindeer tags as a thank you for the lovely ladies who come to my monthly class.

They are so easy but I think they turned out really well. I tend to keep pretty things like these reindeer clips but this year I decided I just have to use them. For special people only of course! I started with some off cuts of Whisper White and strips of Winter Wonderland DSP left over from another project. I used the Curvy Corner trio punch on the front edges and put a ribbon slot on the front. Then I just added mats (from my scrap bin) until I liked the look. The black glimmer paper looks lovely with light shining on it.

A candy dot for the nose finished off the tag. Tie it onto a bag and you are good to go.

Wednesday, 9 December 2015

C for Christmas and candle .... Just Add Ink #291 Just add C

Today I finally have had a chance to share with you a project that we made in our Christmas break up class on Monday. These 3D tea light candle Christmas trees are so easy to make. They put on a great display. I love projects that take minimum effort and have maximum effect. Just what you need at this time of the year.

I thought that they would be perfect for this week's challenge over at Just Add Ink #291 Just add C.


I have used the Cutie Pie thinlits to make these trees. You can whip them up in no time. The Peaceful Pines stamp set and coordinating Perfect Pines framelits dies add the finishing touches.

Adding some of the Winter Wonderland Designer Vellum stack into the aperture cut out gives a lovely effect when the candle is on. Adding a solid tree behind the main image and just showing a little as a border gives a really pretty effect in the candle light.

These trees would also make great Christmas table decorations and bonbons. Add treats to the inside. By the time everyone has eaten the goodies it'll be night time and time to turn the candles on!

Don't you love the Winter Wonderland Embellishments I've added to each large star?

Making these trees is very easy. When you are diecutting one of the box pieces (you need 2) place the triangle die into position and cut the aperture out at the same time. Fold on all score lines and place some double sided tape around the inside of the triangular frame. I cut a template for the vellum by tracing around the outside of the triangle die piece onto cardstock. Trace around your template onto vellum, cut out and adhere to the inside of the box. Assemble as normal. I had better go and make a few more to adorn my Christmas table. I have the best intentions but I can see these being made on Christmas Eve or Christmas morning! Lucky they are so easy to make!

Wednesday, 18 November 2015

Peaceful Pines Christmas Creations tutorial and kit by mail

With Christmas not too far away you have just enough time to create Christmas cards for the special people in your life. This tutorial and kit has been a long process as I have been unwell and couldn't finish it as early as I had planned. Anyway it's done and ready for you to purchase.

This 17 page tutorial gives you full colour instructions for 10 cards (2 each of 3 special cards folds and 4 quick Christmas card layouts). You will have leftover materials that you can use to make at least 10 tags using the skills learnt in the tutorial.

The cards are all made using the Peaceful Pines stamp set and Perfect Pines framelits dies. You get so much in this set.

The instructions include full cutting guides so that you can create all of the cards over and over again as well as have little waste. Please note that the kits do not include pre-cut materials. The instructions are all in metric.

What you get in the kit:
  • 5 pieces of Whisper White A4 cardstock 106549
  • 2 pieces of Mint Macaron A4 cardstock 138344
  • 2 pieces of Soft Suede A4 cardstock 119982
  • 2 pieces of Cherry Cobbler A4 cardstock 121681
  • 2 pieces of Basic Black A4 cardstock 121688
  • 2 pieces of Bermuda Bay A4 cardstock 131286
  • 7 pieces (5 double sided and 2 single sided) of Winter Wonderland Designer Series Paper (each piece 10 x 15 cm) 139588
  • 12 pieces of Winter Wonderland Designer Vellum Stack (each piece 7 x 15 cm) 139594
  • 1 piece of Gold Foil Sheet (10 x 15 cm)  132622
  • 6.7 m of ribbon and trim
  • 2 Iced rhinestones 139637
  • 10 Whisper White C6 envelopes  106588
  • Full colour instructions - PDF document emailed to you.
What you need to make these creations:
  • Cherry Cobbler Classic Stampin' Pad 126966
  • Mint Macaron Classic Stampin' Pad 138326
  • Soft Suede Classic Stampin' Pad 126978
  • Bermuda Bay Classic Stampin' Pad 131171
  • Basic Black Archival Stampin’ Pad 140931 or similar
  • Bigshot 113439 (or similar)
  • Adhesives – double sided tape, glue, foam dots (Stampin' Dimensionals 104430), 2-way glue pen 100425, glue dots 103683
  • Paper crafting equipment - Scissors, paper trimmer, pencil, stamp cleaner etc.
  • 2 battery operated tea light candles – found at discount shops or on EBay
Extra materials – not necessary but will give a professional finish:
Curvy Corner Trio Punch 139683 (or a Tag Topper punch)
Circle punches – 1¼” and 1 3/8“
Glitter - Dazzling Diamonds Stampin' Glitter 133751 or Dazzling Details 124117 (if you want to add a bit of extra sparkle)
There are 4 options to choose from when purchasingUpdated: only option 3 available as at 14/12/15

Option 1: Peaceful Pines bundle, materials kit and free bonus of instructions $ 104.45 AU - this price includes postage. Only available to Australian residents.
The Peaceful Pines bundle will be shipped straight from the Stampin' Up! warehouse to you. I will post the materials kit and email the instructions to you separately.

Option 2: Peaceful Pines Christmas Creations materials kit and instructions $25 AU - this price includes postage. Only available to Australian residents.
Perfect if you already own this bundle. I will post the materials kit and email the instructions to you separately.

Option 3: Peaceful Pines Christmas Creations PDF instructions only $6.00 AU
Perfect for the home crafter or demonstrator alike. Demonstrators can use these instructions for classes. All of the thinking is done for you.
*Emailed to you within 48 hours of payment to the address you used with PayPal.

Option 4: Want to purchase some of the other items needed for the projects and have them added to the products being sent straight from the Stampin' Up! warehouse? Click on the contact tab at the top of this blog and list all of the items you want to purchase. I will email you a PayPal invoice with the updated costs. This will save you a bit on postage as well.

Choose the option you would like from the drop down menu, follow the prompts to pay, then clear a work space at home and wait for your items to arrive so you can get crafting.

Allow up to 10 working days for items to  be shipped from the warehouse.

Peaceful Pines Christmas Creations tutorial options

Monday, 16 November 2015

Dear Reindeer!

On Saturday I had the opportunity to attend the Stampin' Up! Onstage event held in Melbourne. It was a great day and we had a sneak peek at the Occasions and Sale-a-bration Catalogues that will be available from January 5th. There are so many great products in these catalogues.

For the day I was invited to display a card on one of the boards. I used my cute punch art reindeer that I featured in a post a few months ago. Here is the card I made for the display board.

The front panel has a bauble from the Delicate Ornaments thinlits set cut out and then is embossed with the Softly Falling embossing folder. I raised this panel on foam dots to give a bit of depth.

Here is a reminder of how to make the reindeer. It uses the Tree Builder punch. So cute!

PS. Thanks to all of my loyal followers who have asked after my health and about the tutorial that I promised. I am still unwell (hence the fewer than normal posts) but hope to be up and about soon. All of the well wishes are very much appreciated. The tutorial is so close to being finished that it is driving me nuts looking at it. I have been trying to do the last few things and if I can I will launch it later this week. If not I may have to shelve it. Fingers I crossed I finish it - even if it is for my own benefit of completing something at the moment!

Thursday, 29 October 2015

Offset gate fold card

Here the final 2 cards from my class that I held last Monday. I got here eventually! They are another take on the Offset gate fold card and utilises watercolouring techniques.

In this post you can have a look at how to construct this card. It's really easy but just adds a little something extra to your card design. Start with an A5 piece of card stock (A4 cut in half). Score along the long side at 6.5 and 17 cm. Fold on each score line in towards the middle. Make sure the edges butt up to each other before creasing firmly with a bone folder.

The Curvy Corner Trio Punch is great to use on the corners of the flaps. I have CASEd this idea from page 18 of the 2015 Stampin’ Up! Holiday catalogue. One thing to remember is that the scallop edge is not symmetrical. So that your scallops match (or mirror each other) always position the same edge of the cardstock in the same side of the punch. So to make these cards, I make sure that the long side is against the left hand edge of the punch guide. To do the other corner just flip the cardstock so that the long edge in the correct position.

Decorating the cards are easy. Grab some DSP, a banner triple punch and some stamped and die cut elements, layer them and stick them on the left hand flap. To add a pop of colour I have just used an aqua painter and some ink from the lid of a stamp pad on water colour paper. Start at the bottom edge of your shape and paint backwards and forwards moving slowly up. The colour will gradually lighten. Try not to overwork it.
 I really love the Typeset Speciality DSP by Stampin' Up! It is really versatile and gives a great backdrop to the watercolour elements.

The Blended Bloom stamp is perfect for watercolouring. Gorgeous Grunge has great stamps in the set to add detail to background. Crumb Cake cardstock with matching ink adds a subtle touch.

Creating a ribbon closure is easy with the Curvy corner trio punch. Rule a light pencil line across the front of the card where you would like your ribbon slot to be positioned. Line each flap up with your pencil line and punch a ribbon slot. Erase your pencil line. To keep the ribbon secure, anchor on the left hand flap with a glue dot or knot. Securing with the ribbon first makes it easier to decorate the front.

Silver cord trim is perfect for the closure. It is easy to rethread and tie.

PS - In my last post I mentioned that I am working on a tutorial and project kit for Christmas using the Peaceful Pines bundle. I had hoped to have it finished by now but have been really sick and have had to put it on the back burner, much to my disappointment. I have a lot of it done but hope to get it finished in the next few weeks. I am really happy with all of the projects but unfortunately lifes get in the way of crafting sometimes! 

Wednesday, 21 October 2015

Christmas Fancy Fold tutorial sneak peek for JAI #284

Any of you that come to my classes or follow this blog know that I love fancy folds. My favourite fancy folds are ones that fold flat to fit into a standard C6 envelope and when opened stand up for display. It means that your hard work gets to be admired (and you know we all secretly love that!) and the recipient has a reminder of the occasion for days to come. And it doesn't hurt that you only need one stamp to post it!

So when I read about this week's challenge at Just Add Ink I knew that it was right up my alley. The challenge is to simply Just Add a Fancy Fold JAI # 284. Which fold to choose though? I decided to show a sneak peek of a fold that will be part of a tutorial and kit that I will be launching next week all going well. This is called a Tea light Candle Tent Card.

It is a really simple yet effective fold that is so fun for Christmas. Once it is standing up you just put a battery operated tea light candle inside, turn the lights off and admire the card.

If you have been following my blog since earlier this year you will know that I had a few crafty goals. One of those was to sell project tutorials and kits online. Christmas is an ideal time to try this I decided.  I've been bit under the weather these last few weeks so I am a bit behind but hopefully next week I will have a tutorial to sell. I am at the stage where I should have listened to those wise people who suggested I start small. I seemed to have gone with the 'go big or go home' theory unfortunately!
My tutorial will be in the form of a PDF document and will have about 20 pages outlining 10 cards (3 fancy folds and 2 different versions of each and 4 simple but elegant card designs) and 10 tags. There will be a bonus 3D project as well. It is based on the Stampin' Up! products Peaceful Pines stamp set and Perfect Pines framelits dies. The tutorial has cutting guides so that you use everything with little waste - perfect for the home crafter or Demonstrator. There will be the option to buy the tutorial by itself, buy a material kit and get the tutorial free or buy the Peaceful Pines bundle, kit and get the tutorial for free.
I'm really excited about this and just need to finish photographing and checking everything. Check back late next week for a look at what I have to offer. The great thing about this is that you can order the tutorial from anywhere in the world as I email it to you and if you live in Australia you can order products and have them sent straight to you. Please note that the tutorial will be in metric.
So back to finishing my tutorial. Lou

Saturday, 17 October 2015

Watercolour Tent Calendar for #TGIFC25

Continuing on from my last post I have some more examples that the lovely ladies who attend my classes will have to choose from in our water colouring class. I was at a bit of a loss as to what other project I could do until I saw a post by Kelly Kent. I haven't made these type of calendars for a few years and thought they would work perfectly with this flower from Best Thoughts. So thanks Kelly! Make sure you check out Kelly's calendars when you get a chance.

You can read all about how I water colour in my previous post. For this sample I have used Elegant Eggplant and Wisteria Wonder on the petals and Old Olive and Mossy Meadow on the leaves. The calendar base is made using Crumb Cake and I have stamped splotches from the Gorgeous Grunge stamp set in Crumb Cake ink.

I added a layer of Crystal Effects to give it a bit of life. The jury is still out on whether I like the effect or not!

This sample has Pumpkin Pie and Tangelo Twist on the petals and Old Olive and Mossy Meadow on the leaves. These little tear off calendars can be found at most craft shops and online. I love that they come in the recycled paper.

I think that it also fits the bill for this week's inspiration challenge at TGIF - #tgifc25.


It is easy to make this calendar stand. Just follow the easy instructions below. The added bonus is that it folds flat and fits into a standard C6 envelope.

Tent calendar card instructions.
Cut a piece of A4 in half lengthways and fold in half to make a regular card size.
The base is made with a piece of cardstock 7 x 10.5 cm. Score along the short side and fold as per the diagram below.
Fold up your cardstock so that it is a concertina with the middle fold sitting up like a mountain. Apply tape to the 2 outside edges. This concertina gets attached to the bottom edges of the card inside to form a tent. Make sure that the middle fold is sitting up and the 2 outside folds are facing down.
Decorate as desired. This calendar will fit into a standard C6 envelope.

Tuesday, 13 October 2015

Water colouring with Best Thougths

For my next card making class I decided to give everyone a break from Christmas and ask for requests. So on Monday we will be doing some water colouring techniques using a lovely hostess stamp set called Best Thoughts.

These are 2 samples from the class.

It is a really fun and relaxing way to make a quick card (and look a bit arty along the way!).

This card fold is called an Offset Gate Fold. Instructions are at the end of this post.

I have a few tips for you but remember this is just a suggested way of colouring that works for me. It is a personal thing and you will develop a style that works for you. Some people reverse the order – i.e. start with the darkest colour first.
1.      Stamp your image on watercolour paper using the Basic Black Archival Stampin’ Pad. This ensures that your image won’t smear or bleed when you colour.

2.      Choose your ink pad colours. I like to work with a light and dark ink of the same tone such as Mossy Meadow and Old Olive. Test them out first to see how they work together as adding water to colours can make them separate if not a true primary colour.

3.      Squeeze each ink pad so that you transfer some of the ink from the pad to the lid. Use an Aqua Painter brush to pick up ink from the lid. These brushes are great as they hold water in the barrel. You can adjust the amount of water that comes out by the pressure you apply to the barrel. This allows you to adjust the strength of colour.

4.      Work on small areas at a time. If you are colouring a flower, focus on each petal rather than the flower as a whole. Work on one petal at a time. Use the lightest ink to colour the whole petal first.  Use the darker colour to fill in where there should be shadows. Think to yourself “Which part of the petal is under another?” That is where you add your dark colour.
5.      I like to use a dabbing and feathery motion with my Aqua Painter instead of a painting motion. This gives a more ‘watercoloury’ look with more variations of colour. You don’t need to blend the colours very much as the water helps merge the 2 colours naturally. From experience staring at one area for too long will convince you that it looks terrible. My advice is to just move to the next area and look back after it is dry and all complete. If you are just starting out and don’t like your efforts, just start again, relax and enjoy the process.  
6.      Try to vary the ratio of each colour strength. I usually do about 2/3 of the light and about 1/3 of the darker colour.
7.      A very light wash of Crumb Cake or Soft Sky around your image helps highlight it.
8.      My general order of painting flowers is:

1.  Light wash around image

2.  Paint leaves

3.  Paint petals – I start on the petal that stands out the most to me. Then I just work around from that.

For the leaves on this example I have used Mossy Meadow and Old Olive. The flower is painted with Blackberry Bliss and Rose Red.

The other sample has Cucumber Crush and Bermuda Bay on the leaves and Watermelon Wonder and Cherry Cobbler on the petals. I have stamped some random dots from Gorgeous Grunge around the red flower. To avoid stamping on the flower I have used the stamp sticker backing as a mask. It wipes clean and stores ready for the next time I need to used it.

I have added some stamped images on the Crumb Cake bases of each card using the matching ink. A white gel pen adds the finishing touches to the stamens.

Securing this gatefold card is easy. A small embellishment is placed on the smaller flap and the panel on the larger side is positioned so that it fits under the embellishment.

Offset gate fold instructions
Start with an A5 piece of cardstock. Score along the long side at 6.5 and 17 cm as per the diagram below. Fold each score line in towards the middle. Make sure the edges butt up to each other before creasing firmly with a bone folder.

I'll post the other examples over the next week.

Wednesday, 7 October 2015

Birthday Balloons for JAI#282

Today things seemed to be going along really well until I saw somewhere that there are only 79 days until Christmas. I should have looked yesterday. I'm sure that I would have felt much better about there being 80 days! So instead of going into a tail spin I decided to check the challenge sites that I like and decided that the inspiration challenge at Just Add Ink this week would be a great distraction.

The colours in this picture are so pretty. I used Melon Mambo, Basic Grey and Pink Pirouette to recreate the feel.

I have used the stripe from the Work of Art stamp set and the balloons are made using the Layered Letters Alphabet set. I had a few attempts to get the balloons to look randomly placed. In the end I punched five 1" circles from scrap, played with the arrangement until I was happy with them, then copied the layout with the stamps.

Can you see how the 'A' looks like it is hiding behind the 'H' balloon? I used one of my punched circles as a mask over the 'H' when stamping the 'A' in black Momento ink. My photos look a bit overexposed but I really liked how the silver cord trim sparkles in the sunlight. Perfect Sunshine Coast weather for us today!

The inside of my card is simple. I have used the 'birthday' stamp from Celebrate Today over my layered letters. (I also used that on the front to complete my greeting).

Note to self - DO NOT look at anymore countdown to Christmas Calendars!
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