8/20/2019

Two Challenges, Two Cards and Two Great Stampin' Up! Stamp Sets

Happy Tuesday!  I have two cards today that feature new for 2019 stamps from Stampin' Up!  They are in a style that I really like.  I was attracted to them when I first saw the catalog and they were among the first sets I purchased from the 2019-20 catalog.  Then I realized that they are in same style as my favorite set from last year - Animal Outing!  I'm nothing if not consistent.
My first card is for the color challenge at Splitcoaststampers this week - Petal Pink, Calypso Coral and Pear Pizzazz with Foil cardstock for dessert.  I used the New Wonders hostess set and Bird Ballad designer series paper.  I also used the Stitched Rectangle and Sweet Silhouettes Dies.  To complete the card three Frosted Flower Embellishments were used in Petal Pink.
My next card is for CAS Colours & Sketches color challenge:
Both challenges allow the neutrals brown, beige, black, grey and white but the SCS challenge also allows Stampin' Up! neutrals such as Mossy Meadow and Night of Navy.  Both were used on that card - in the background and to darken the leaves.

To get the skin tone on each I needed to blend my own color.   (I chose to use the inkpads/reinkers to watercolor the images rather than use Stampin' Blends which come with a skin tone.)  I used a light touch of both Soft Suede and Petal Pink.  All the SU browns when watered down are not the correct hue for skin.  When combined these two do a pretty good job.

There weren't many color decisions in the first card, but surprisingly there were in the second.  Lot's of combinations for the shirt, dress, hats, etc.  When faced with that I'll do some quick mock-ups first so I know I'll like the combo I choose.
Here, I did three using the Stampin' Write markers.  Not a great coloring job but enough to let me know which color combination I liked.
After I decided, I cut off the one I liked and laid it above the final image I was coloring so I wouldn't get confused.  I know me and had I been looking at the panel with three combos, at some point I'd have messed up and looked at the wrong couple!
This stamp set, On to Adventure comes with the two pictured above as well as a woman doing yoga and a male golfer.  It's a great all-around set that can be used for birthdays, retirement, bon voyage and more!  On this card I also used the Bird Ballad DSP and the Sweet Silhouettes Die.  It comes with two floral images and three script words - "inspire", "adventure" and "forever".

I've listed all the products I used below.  The New Wonders stamp set is only available with Stampin' Rewards that are earned after you spend $150.   Purchase the On to Adventure stamp set and dies used in both cards and you're almost there!  Just add the paper and embellishments and you've earned the New Wonders set FREE!

As a bonus, if you purchase $150 worth of products that includes New Wonders and On to Adventure I'll send you a FREE PDF of instructions for these two cards PLUS two more using these sets! (Contact me if you already own these sets and purchase $150 worth of products)

Stamps: On to Adventure, New Wonders
Dies: Stitched Rectangles, Sweet Silhouettes, Stitched Nested Labels
Ink: Petal Pink, Calypso Coral, Pear Pizzazz, Soft Suede, Gorgeous Grape, Highland Heather, Crushed Curry, Night of Navy, Mossy Meadow
Paper: Bird Ballad DSP, Gold Foil, Whisper White Thick, Shimmery White
Accessories: Frosted Flowers, Flower Faceted Gems, Gorgeous Grape Mini-Striped Ribbon, Stampin' Write Markers, Blender Pens, Aqua Painter, Stamparatus or acrylic blocks (I used E)

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8/13/2019

Double Duty Card - Again

Hi everyone!  I had a very busy weekend so I decided to combine a sketch challenge and a color challenge this week.
The sketch is from CAS Colours & Sketches:
And the colors are my choice as hostess of the color challenge at Splitcoaststampers:
Daffodil Delight, Flirty Flamingo, Pacific Point 

I'm really not ready for fall so I wanted one last summer looking color palette.  I know that it's time to start making those Halloween, Thanksgiving and Christmas cards but I'd like a few more weeks of summer themed creating!

The image is colored with mostly Copic markers color matched to the challenge colors but I did use a few Stampin' Blends.  The coloring isn't my best - it is a little uneven, but I'll just say that she has been in the sun too long and gotten a bit sun damage! 

Stamps:  MFT Drink Up the Sunshine
Markers: Stampin Blends Daffodil Delight and Flirty Flamingo.  Challenge colors - R000, Y11, B00, B12, B16 Coconut - E50, E53, E55, E57, E59  Hair - E53, E35, E37, E29 Skin - E000, E53, E11 Lace - N0, N1, N3

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8/06/2019

Go To Layouts and Design

Hi everyone!  I have two cards today for two different color challenges.  Things this weekend were pretty hectic for me so you will see that reflected in the cards I made.  I realized after I was finished that they are pretty similar in design.  The first card is for CAS Colours & Sketches and the second is for Splitcoaststampers Color Challenge.
CC&S colors: Cajun Craze, Old Olive and Grapefruit Grove
Splitcoaststampers colors: Rich Razzleberry, Shaded Spruce, Pineapple Punch and Mango Melody

A realization that I had this weekend was that when I have a good layout or a color scheme I like, it may show up in variations in my cards because it is simply quicker to go with those.  This week it was the layout.

I wasn't even conscious of it until I was actually putting it all together on the second card when I realized both had square elements at an angle.  They both also have subtle backgrounds - one is the embossed panel and the other has stenciling behind the focal item.

I'll admit that for my second card I was in a bit of a hurry.  And when I'm in a hurry, I find that watercoloring is a good choice since it goes fairly fast for me.  My style is pretty loose.  I like the sort of blotchy, mottled effect you can achieve with watercolor.  When things get too smooth I will use my heat gun to dry the piece and go back over it with color to get a bit more contrast.  When I want a smooth, blended effect that is when I go with my alcohol (mostly Copic) markers - but those take time.

We all have our style of creating and being aware of what works for us (or doesn't) and having some "go to" layouts, color combos, etc. can be a real time saver.  The cards above are different yet very similar. So even when using your favorite layout or color combo, with just a little tweaking, your cards will still look different and give you variety.

Card 1:
Dies: Cottage Cutz Potted Cactus
Stamps: MFT Sweet Succulents
Stencil: MFT Weave

Card 2:
Stamps: Magenta 23293-J, Stamping Bella Butterfly Sentiments
Dies: MFT Wonky Stitched Squares
Embossing Folder: Stampin' Up! Swirls and Curls

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7/30/2019

A Double Challenge Card

Today I have a card for the double challenge at CAS Colours & Sketches.  When there is a fifth Tuesday in the month, CC&S has a sketch and color challenge using a previous sketch and retired colors.  It's a fun time to pull out those colors that aren't used so much anymore and sometimes even those stamps that aren't used so much.
This is the challenge and colors:
This card is very simple and pretty self-explanatory.  I water colored my card and used the Emerald as my shadow color.  The Primrose Petals is used for the ears and nose.

Stamps and Dies:Newton's Nook Newton Unwinds; Stampin' Up! Chalk Lines
Ink: Stampin' Up! Emerald Envy, Primrose Petals, Pistachio Pudding (all retired)

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7/26/2019

How to Make Fast Card Design Decisions

My card today attempts to answer that question - what DOES the fox say?  I'm not sure what all foxes say, but we'll find out what this one says anyway. And I'll share some tips on designing a card quickly.  This card was created in under an hour including photographing the steps involved.  It was because I didn't need to think about the two biggest factors in card design - layout and color.
I started with this week's sketch at Splitcoaststampers. As I've said before - sketch challenges make designing a card much faster!  Most challenges allow you to rotate or flip the sketch so you don't have to feel constrained.  Similarly, you can usually interpret or omit small items from the sketch.  In this case, I eliminated the bow as it would have been too fussy for my design.  And if you aren't actually entering the challenge, you can just use it as a starting point and go from there!
I picked my patterned paper next and then the coordinating colors. This is a great way to shortcut card design - once the pattern is established, the colors come from that.  Often - especially when coloring an image with my Copic markers - I color first and then have to find a coordinating paper which can take awhile, a long while.

But for a card like this where the colors of the fox are established and neutral, I can use any colors for the presents and balloons.  I'll pick the patterned paper first and the other colors follow.  If I know my recipient's favorite colors so much the better, but if not (or I don't have them) I just pick a pattern that's appropriate.  It's hard sometimes, but I try not to agonize over the choice of pattern.  In the case of this card, the confetti was perfect for a birthday and the scale was right, so I ran with it!
In order to get variety in color for the presents I had to cut them in multiple colors and make multiple presents. 
Ultimately I ended up using only one present.  Those that weren't used I saved for a later card. I'll store the finished die cut presents with the die so the next time I use it I can see that I already have images ready for use. This is another way to make designing and assembling a card faster - pre-made images.

To finish off the front of the card I popped up the fox and present using foam dots and added gold sequins.
(And to answer THE question....the fox says CELEBRATE!)

Dies: Cottage Cutz Birthday Fox, Birthday Hedgehog, and Celebration Phrase
Stamps: Technique Tuesday Fredrick and Fiona
Paper: Retired Stampin' Up! DSP, Bermuda Bay, Calypso Coral, Crushed Curry, Night of Navy, Gold foil, Cajun Craze, Very Vanilla

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