Wednesday, December 20, 2017

Watercooler Wednesday Challenge #150 - Heidi's Masculine Anything Goes Challenge
This is our last challenge for the year of 2017. And, because it is such a hectic time of year for many of you, we are making this a 2-week challenge. It's also a Masculine theme, hosted by Heidi.
Because it is the end of the year, and a time when we hear ourselves saying "out with the old, in the new" - or variations there of, I am combining old and new in my card.
The old is a retired stamp set that I haven't used nearly enough - Traveller - and also a retired cardstock colour - Lost Lagoon - that I've been hoarding but have somewhat got over it being retired with the release of a new InColor, Tranquil Tide.

The new part is a background stamp called Post Script, which I stamped with Tranquil Tide ink on Crumb Cake cardstock. I also used Tranquil Tide ink to stamp some of the other images from Traveller onto the Lost Lagoon card base.

Check out what the other Watercooler Artists have done at Watercooler Wednesday Challenge.

Hoping everyone can spend time with family and friends throughout this holiday season.

Wednesday, December 13, 2017

Watercooler Wednesday Challenge #149 - Marsha's All About Occasions Challenge
This week, Marsha brings us a new type of challenge - All About Occasions.
As the graphic says, there really are a lot of card-worthy occasions in our lives. And, in addition to the birthdays, weddings, anniversaries, engagements, christenings, births, sympathy, retirement, Easter, Valentines, Mother's and Father's days, we can also send cards just to say "Hi! I'm thinking of you."

I've created a card that can  be used to say Hi! - or for many of the other card giving occasions throughout the year.
Some of you may recognize the Timeless Elegance DSP from a couple of years ago. It is full of wonderful black  and white designs, like you can see behind my card. This roses pattern just begged to be coloured and back then, we pretty much only had the Stampin' Up markers to use, or we could sponge colour on with daubers.

Now, however, we have Stampin' Blends! I used Cherry Cobbler, Daffodil Delight, Old Olive and Pumpin Pie. The weather here has been really foggy and kind of dreary for about a week, and it was really spirit-lifting to work with such vibrant colour.

All in all, this was a really simple card to  make. After I finished the colouring, I matted the  piece with Basic Black cardstock,  and then mounted that onto Old Olive. A few wraps with  Linen Thread and a floppy bow provide a rustic touch. And this card could be for a birthday, or "thinking of you",  or congratulations or just because.

To see how the other Watercooler Artists have interpreted this new Occasions Challenge, visit  Watercooler Wednesday.  

Wednesday, December 6, 2017

Watercooler Wednesday Challenge #148 - Heidi's Feminine Anything Goes Challenge
It's time for Anything Goes and our host this week, Heidi has given it feminine theme.
I took this opportunity to take a break from making Christmas cards. Also, went back to the basics of ink, paper, stamps. It is one of my favourite things to do and I find it relaxing - almost like meditating. Other than deciding on the stamp set - Tranquil Tulips, and  ink colours - Fresh Fig, Old Olive, I had no other plan and just started putting ink on the stamp and applying it to the Whisper White cardstock.

And here is the result:
This deceptively simple stamp set, which is an exclusive hostess set, produces spectacular results. I used the stamps with full strength ink - no stamping off - and the stamps are designed to give all this amazing detail  and texture.

The card base is Fresh Fig, as is the 1/2" finely woven ribbon. I used a Clear Faceted Gem (it's covering a spot that didn't get fully inked - but that will be our little secret!) on one of the tulips.

Want to see what the rest of the team has done? Just go to Watercooler Wednesday and check it out!

Wednesday, November 29, 2017

Watercooler Wednesday Challenge #147 - Charlotte's Anything Goes Challenge
This week we have an Anything Goes Challenge from Charlotte.
At this time of year, a lot of us are working on Christmas projects. And, I'm no exception. When the Carols of Christmas stamp set and co-ordinating Thinlits were made available in an early release in the late summer, I was seeing some awesome projects from other demonstrators on Pinterest. One of the early projects I pinned was one done by Sandi McIver, a fellow demonstrator.

I had wanted to CASE her creation as  one of  my  cards for this 2017 Christmas season, and this is my version:
Sandi had many more elements on her card, but mine is simplified. I loved her colour scheme: the card base is Thick Whisper White and I used Tranquil Tide cardstock, DSP from the Delightful Daisy pack, and Watercolour Paper.

For the trees, they were die-cut from Tranquil Tide, then I smeared them with Embossing Paste. Before it dried I sprinkled Dazzling Diamonds onto the paste.

The background on the watercolour piece could not be easier to do. It is  simply Bermuda Bay and Tranquil Tide ink applied with an Aqua Painter. I stamped the sentiment from Merry Messages with Tranquil Tide.

And of course, that cute little deer peeking out from behind the tree is from the Carols of Christmas die set, using Champagne Foil.

Now it's your turn. Visit Watercooler Wednesday and check out more inspiration from the team. 

Wednesday, November 22, 2017

Watercooler Wednesday Challenge #146 - Kath's All About Christmas Challenge
It's Christmas again at the Watercooler! Our host this week is Kath.
Are you a big fan of Designer Series Paper? I can't say I'm a fan, but every once in a while, Stampin' Up comes along with a collection that just calls to me. In the 2017 Holiday Catalogue there just happen to be a few collections that did that. One of them is the Year of Cheer Specialty Designer Series Paper.

I'm not normally a blingy kind of crafter, but at this time of year, it seems as if I'm all about the bling. And this pack of SDSP has lots of it with foil designs in Champagne, Copper, Gold and Silver.

As I was looking over all the yummy patterns, I got the idea of stamping on a piece that reminded me of light around a candle flame. And the perfect stamp set for this was the Merry Patterns candles.
I stamped the candle outlines with Archival Basic Black, then stamped with designs with Fresh Fig. The candles in the back row are second generation stamping, which means stamping the inked image on a scrap piece then, without re-inking, stamp onto your cardstock. It's a great way to get varied shades of one colour.

When it came to the candle flames, I wasn't thinking when i went for my Daffodil Delight Stampin' Blends. If you look closely, the black outline smeared a bit and the yellow bled outside the lines. That's because the Stampin' Blends are alcohol-based ink, so I should have used a water-based ink like Memento Tuxedo Black.

As for the bleeding, I think it just looks like the glow from the flame!

The pine branches and sentiment are also from the Merry Patterns set.

Another item I don't often reach for that I've used on this card, is ribbon. For some reason, I just had to have that Fresh Fig 1/8" sheer ribbon. The DSP piece is mounted on Whisper White, then onto the Fresh Fig card base.

For more Christmas inspiration, visit Watercooler Wednesday and check out what the other 'Cooler Artists have come up with.

Wednesday, November 15, 2017

Watercooler Wednesday Challenge #145 - Judy's Masculine "Anything Goes" Challenge
Judy is our host this week with a Masculine Anything Goes Challenge.
It is good timing for me, as I need to do some masculine-themed cards this week. Also, I had just received an order with a package of the Merry Little Christmas Designer Series Paper. This collection has some great patterns that work for this masculine challenge.
I used the black & white plaid design and the tree design from the DSP. The card base is Basic Gray. I cut a strip of Basic Black cardstock and ran it through the new Wood Planks embossing folder.

The sentiment is from Merry Little Labels stamp set, stamped with Archival Black on Whisper White, then punched out with the Everyday Label punch. I punched two more labels from Basic Black and cut them apart then adhered them to the back to make a "frame" for the white label.

This could easily be a Christmas card for a male friend, family member or co-worker. But, I need a birthday card. Here is the inside:
I used more of the plaid pattern and stamped the sentiment on Whisper White. It is from the Window Shopping stamp set, and I though the font was a good match for the sentiment on the front.

The Watercooler Artists have some more great samples of masculine-themed cards. Just visit Watercooler Wednesday and check them out.

Wednesday, November 8, 2017

Watercooler Wednesday Challenge #144 Penny's All About Birthdays
Our challenge this week, hosted by Penny, is All About Birthdays.
Birthday cards are something we need several times a year. After all, everyone we know has a birthday! It's good to have a stash on hand, ready to just grab one and go.

For my project this week, I used a brand, spanking new product and a favourite stamp set that was just made to be used with the aforementioned new product - even though it was released a couple of years ago.

The new product: Stampin' Blends - alcohol based markers!
The stamp set: Remarkable You.
Do you think they are made for each other?
When using alcohol markers, it is important to use a water-based ink to stamp the images. This eliminates the risk of smearing. For this card, I used Memento Tuxedo Black ink to stamp the images onto Shimmer White cardstock. Another tip - give your stamped images a few minutes to thoroughly dry before you start colouring.

I used the masking technique here to create a "stack" of blooms - to go along with the sentiment from Sprinkles of Life stamp set. Stampin' Blends colours used are Night of Navy, Cherry Cobbler, Daffodil Delight and Old Olive.

Some Crushed Curry Thick Bakers Twine, black rhinestones and Metallic Enamel Shapes finish off the main panel. This is matted on Night of Navy cardstock, then onto a Crushed Curry card base.

The Watercooler Artists have all come up with some wonderful birthday designs. You can see them at Watercooler Wednesday.

Wednesday, November 1, 2017

Watercooler Wednesday Challenge #143 - Gail's Feminine Challenge
This week we bring you a Feminine Challenge, courtesy of yours truly!
While I know it isn't true that only women love cats, some do think that more women than men are cat fans. That was my reasoning behind using the fabulous cat punch that can be found in the 2017 Holiday Catalogue.

I also used this as an opportunity to try a technique I found on the blog of the awesomely talented Lydia Fiedler. She used the shaving cream technique - with a twist.

First, take a look at what I did:
At first glance, it looks like I just used the cat punch to punch from some patterned paper. However, what I actually did was use a piece of Window Sheet and punched out one cat to make a stencil.

Next, I took a paper plate and sprayed a layer of cheap shaving cream onto it, then smoothed out the top. Onto that smoothed surface, I dropped ink randomly, using Melon Mambo, Tempting Turquoise and Daffodil Delight re-inkers. With a bamboo skewer, I just lightly ran it through the spots of ink, being careful not to make mud.

Up to this point, it sounds pretty much like the shaving cream technique of years ago. But, instead of placing cardstock on top of the ink, I used an old gift card to carefully lift up some of the shaving cream with the ink on top.

I placed my cat stencil on a piece of Whisper White cardstock, then using the shaving cream/ink loaded gift card, dragged it carefully over the stencil. It's bit tricky to do this without the shaving cream leaking under the stencil and I do confess I did a lot of "practice" before getting these clean images. At bit of repositionable adhesive helps. But, the practice ones didn't go to waste, as I punched them out and they can be used on other projects.

What is your idea of a feminine theme? We would love to see it! Just visit Watercooler Wednesday to see how the Watercooler Artists interpret it.

Wednesday, October 25, 2017

Watercooler Wednesday Challenge #142 - Charlotte's All About Christmas Challenge
We're celebrating Christmas again here at the Watercooler this week. Charlotte is hosting this All About Christmas challege.
Before I show you my project, I have to tell you a little story. Any crafter will probably understand how, when you are in a craft store, you pick up all kinds of objects because a brilliant idea suddenly springs to mind and you just know that it is the perfect project.

Well, in my seemingly never-ending quest to downsize and purge, I have been coming across all kinds of such objects. Some of them make me stop and think: "What on earth did I plan on using this for????"

But, recently I came across some wooden stars. And I thought ah ha! I need to use these for something. So it was perfect timing for this challenge. Here's what I started with:
Add some Merry Music DSP, some silver Tinsel Trim, a bit of Striped Ribbon and a Season of Glitz mini gift bow and you end up with this:
I also used the Merry Little Labels stamp set and stamped the Let it Snow with Versamark ink on Basic Black cardstock and embossed with silver embossing powder. It's punched out with the Everyday Labels punch.

I used Mod Podge to glue on the DSP and found that Aileen's Tacky Glue worked best with the Tinsel Trim.

The star measures 6.5" long by 4" wide, and while maybe a bit larger than most Christmas tree decorations, it could work on a tree, I think.

It was fun to put together and came together quickly - once I had decided on everything else. And, I have 5 more of them! Now, do I do them all the same? Or each one different? Hmmmm

How are your Christmas projects coming along? If you need a boost to get going, make a project and link it up at Watercooler Wednesday. You will find a lot of inspiration there from my fellow Watercooler Artists.

Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Watercooler Wednesday Challenge #141 - Heidi's Masculine Anything Goes Challenge
Our challenge this week, hosted by Heidi, is one that really does challenge me - the Masculine Challenge.
For my project for this challenge, I used a background I had made using some non-Stampin' Up inks that are really fun to work with.
The colours reminded me of a fall sunset. And make me reach for my Sheltering Tree stamp set. In keeping with a fall theme, I stamped the leaves by inking the leaf stamp with Crushed Curry, Pumpkin Pie, Cajun Craze and Always Artichoke. The trunk and branches are Early Espresso.

I did not use all those colours on the stamp at the same time. Instead, I used my MISTI and applied one colour at a time in random spots and stamped. Then repeated the process with each colour. The beauty of the MISTI is that the cardstock and stamp stay in exactly the same position so it is easy to restamp.

To finish off, I used a strip of DSP from Painted Autumn and a piece of the Copper Trim, stretched out a bit. The card base is Always Artichoke and the sentiment is Early Espresso.

To link up your project, go to Watercooler Wednesday. While you're there, check out the awesome projects from the rest of the team!

Wednesday, October 11, 2017

Watercooler Wednesday Challenge #140 - Libby's All About Birthdays

This week's challenge, brought to us by Libby, is All About Birthdays.
Sometimes, you need a card in a hurry. As did I this week! I was merrily going along thinking I had my card already to upload on Monday to our challenge group. Wasn't until I went to actually upload it that I realized I had done a totally different theme.

What's a cardmaker to do? Well, Stampin' Up's Specialty Designer Paper to the rescue!
The Foil Frenzy is pretty spectacular IRL (in real life). I simply cut strips of varying widths and lengths, and glued them to the Basic Black card base.

Next, I stamped a greeting from Birthday Blast on Whisper White  and flagged the ends. It's popped up with dimensionals and two black rhinestones finish it off.

That's it - done! Sometimes a card doesn't have to be a one-of-a-kind masterpiece. This Foil Frenzy is the perfect DSP to be the star.

Now off you go to visit Watercooler Wednesday and check out what the other Watercooler Artists have done. 

Wednesday, October 4, 2017

Watercooler Wednesday Challenge #139 - Kath's Feminine Anything Goes Challenge
For this week's challenge, Kath has given us a Feminine Anything Goes Challenge.
When a new catalogue comes out, it's easy to get caught up in the excitement of new stuff. The Holiday Catalogue has a lot of great new stuff, and much of it would certainly work for a feminine theme.

But, as I was looking through my stamp sets, my eye fell on Rose Wonder, which has a beautifully large image of a rose with a couple of leaves. It's all that is needed to make a big impact on a feminine card.
I stamped the image on Whisper White cardstock with Archival Basic Black ink, then coloured it with Peek-a-boo Peach, Flirty Flamingo, Mint Macaron and Cucumber Crush.

That could have stood on its own very nicely, but this stamp set has a co-ordinating set of framelits. So I used the new Champagne Foil to cut the image outline. I think it sets things off beautifully.

The sentiment, from Picture Perfect, is stamped with Tranquil Tide to match the card base. And that's all there is to it.

To see how the other Watercooler Artists have interpreted this challenge, visit Watercooler Wednesday. You have until Monday, October 9 at 5:00 p.m. Mountain Daylight Time to link up your project.

Wednesday, September 27, 2017

Watercooler Wednesday Challenge #138 - Marsha's All About Christmas Challenge
It's Christmas again at the Watercooler! This week, Marsha is hosting an All About Christmas Challenge.
I was lucky to be able to earn the special, bonus stamp set that is available only until Oct. 31 - Merry Patterns. And it arrived just in time for me to use it for this challenge.
I love this 2-step candle image, and used Fresh Fig and Berry Burst for the patterns and Archival Basic Black for the outlines. The flames are Crushed Curry.

Half of a silver Metallic Snowflake provides a base for the candles, and I set it off with some Black Lace ribbon.

The banners are from Merry Music DSP. A piece of Black cardstock sets everything off. The card base is Thick Whisper White.

It looks like there is a lot going on with this design, but it did come together quite quickly. I'm thinking I make more and just change up the colours in the candles. I really like the black & white with just a pop of colour.

Now it's time to visit Watercooler Wednesday and check out the awesome Christmas creations from the rest of the team. It's easy to link up your entry.

Wednesday, September 20, 2017

Watercooler Wednesday Challenge #137 - Penny's Masculine Challenge
This week's challenge, brought to us by Penny, is all about the men in your life.
It just so happened that I was making a sympathy card for my brother-in-law whose brother has just passed away. Sympathy cards are tough to make at any time.

While I didn't want to use really bright colours, I don't always want to use somber, dull colours either. So I started with playing around with a piece of the new Champagne Foil and the Woodland Embossing Folder. And here is what happened:

To make the trees show up more, I dragged my black StazOn ink pad across them. The Carols of Christmas framelits and Smoky Slate make the perfect frame for the embossed piece, and shows up nicely against the Basic Black card base.

The sentiment is from Rose Wonder, stamped with Archival Basic Black on Smoky Slate, then cut out with a Stitched Framelits oval.

Visit Watercooler Wednesday Challenge and see all the great creations from the rest of the team.

Wednesday, September 13, 2017

Watercooler Wednesday Challenge #136 - Gail's All About Birthdays Challenge
This week is my turn to host and I picked an All About Birthdays theme. Birthday cards are probably the most needed type of cards for all of us.
 Since birthdays are festive occasions, I thought this is the perfect opportunity to use a new stamp set I received recently - Half Full. It's a special set, as it was designed by a demo who reached a remarkable milestone - one million dollars in sales. And, it's all about wine!

My card was inspired a package of napkins I spotted in London Drugs, a local pharmacy. That's what I used as the background. It was really easy to adhere to the Sahara Sand cardstock base by using the Adhesive Sheets. A gift card was used to smooth out the very thin layer of tissue.

The colours on the napkin matched perfectly with Sahara Sand and Fresh Fig. So I stamped the tag with Fresh Fig on Very Vanilla and fussy cut. A small piece of Jute Twine is threaded through a hole punched in the tag, and I tied a piece of Copper Trim around that. A few dimensionals pop it up.

The row of wine glasses were stamped on Fresh Fig cardstock with Fresh Fig ink. For the sentiment, I used the 'happy birthday' from Teeny Tiny Wishes. And, of course, I had to use a trio of my favourite embellishment of the moment - Black rhinestones.

To do the wine bottle, I used Always Artichoke ink on Very Vanilla. The colouring was done by picking up some Always Artichoke ink from the lid of the stamp pad with a blender pen. I wanted it to look streaky, like it is a very old, some-what dusty bottle that was hidden in the back corner of the wine cellar.

For the top of the bottle, I wanted it to look like it had a foil wrap around the cork. I stamped just the top of the bottle on the back side of a piece of Champagne Foil that had a piece of the Adhesive Sheet adhered to it. After fussy cutting, it was easy to place it on the bottle.

The final touches on the bottle, the white highlights, are done with a white Posca paint pen.

While it looks like there is a lot to this card, it went together very quickly. And I still have a lot of napkins left to make more cards!

Now go visit Watercooler Wednesday and see what the other Watercooler Artists have created.

Wednesday, September 6, 2017

Watercooler Wednesday Challenge #135 - Judy's Feminine Anything Goes Challenge
Judy brings us a Feminine Anything Goes Challenge this week.
For my card this week, I used a hostess set from the 2017-2018 Annual Catalogue. All the hostess sets in this current catalogue are outstanding, but the Tranquil Tulips really caught my eye, and I was finally able to get it. Just in time for this challenge!
This set is a two-step set - my favourite kind! - and it has a watercolour look to it - my favourite technique!

I started by stamping the tulips with Melon Mambo, then stamped the leaves with Wild Wasabi on watercolour paper. Next I used a small watercolour paint brush, wet but not saturated, and just painted over the stamped images to smooth them out.

When that was dry, I went in with the same brush, again wet but not saturated, dipped into drops of Soft Sky ink and did a wash across the piece.

To give a bit of detail to everything, again using the paint brush, I mixed some water with a drop of Tranquil Tide ink and splattered it across everything.

Now, have a closer look at the dragonfly.
It is cut with the Detailed Dragonfly Thinlits, from a brand new product you will find in the 2017 Holiday Catalogue - Champagne Foil. Isn't it stunning? Because I haven't been able to stop using the Black Rhinestones, also from the Holiday Catalogue, I went all out and used all three sizes on the body of the dragonfly.

A thin border of Basic Black cardstock is the perfect accent for the watercolour piece, and it's all mounted on a Tranquil Tide cardbase.

Now, go create your own Feminine Anything Goes! Visit Watercooler Wednesday to be inspired by the rest of the Watercooler Artists - and a special Guest Artist as a bonus.

WWC211 - Kath's Feminine Anything Goes Challenge It's a feminine theme this week from Kath. A perfect opportunity to play with my new butte...