Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Watercool Wednesday Challenge #116 - Kath's Masculine "Anything Goes" Challenge

If you are a card maker who finds it, well, challenging to create masculine themed projects, you will find tons of inspiration at the Watercooler! Kath is the host of this week's Masculine "Anything Goes" Challenge.
I went to a stamp set that I really liked when I saw it. Had to have it. Got it - and haven't really used it much. I know every stamper probably has sets like that in their collection.

This one is called Pun Intended and is only available with Stampin' Rewards. It really is a clever and fun stamp set! See what I mean?
I seem to be in a "green" mood since hosting last week's challenge which had a Spring theme. I started with an Always Artichoke card base then used Always Artichoke and Mint Macaron to stamp the lines image from Playful Backgrounds on Very Vanilla cardstock. The circles are done with Archival Black.

The fun camera is from Pun Intended, as is the sentiment. I stamped the camera image in Archival Black onto Whisper White cardstock, coloured bits of it with Gold Wink of Stella, then fussy cut it.

I had a piece of Very Vanilla, with a square cut out of it, in my scrap pile and when I looked at it, I saw a frame - any of you who remember Polaroid cameras will know what I mean.

The piece of DSP from Serene Scenery is another tie-in to the camera theme. I love the Bokeh effect and it makes the camera look like it's floating.

For more inspiration visit Watercooler Wednesday to see what the other Watercooler Artists have done. We can't wait to see what you come up with!

Thursday, April 20, 2017

Wacky Watercooler April Blog Hop - Retirement Means Goodbye
It's that time of the year again, where we say goodbye to some of our favourite things from the 2016-2017 Annual Catalogue. It's a sad time for some, but it's also an exciting time for some. Exciting, because it means we will have new stuff to fall in love with!

You may have arrived here from Marie's blog. I'm certain you loved her projects!

This month we are focusing on some of our favourite products that will no longer be available after May 31. There is always shock and surprise among demonstrators when the retirement list is revealed. And this year I had a few moments of shock and surprise. One of those moments was when I realized that the much beloved Gorgeous Grunge set is retiring. This set is, I think one of the first sets Stampin' Up! released that has only images of different textures. So versatile - it could be used on many, many styles of cards.

So, my first project features almost  every image from the Gorgeous Grunge set:
I started with a piece of Whisper White cardstock and stamped each of the textures with a different In Color ink from the 2015-2017 collection - also retiring this year. I have to admit that it took me a while to get comfortable with these colours and the only one I will really miss is Tip Top Taupe - it is a great neutral.  The other In Colors used here are Mint Macaron and Delightful Dijon. The other colour in this collection is Watermelon Wonder - it just did not fit with this design! For the background images here, I first stamped off once to get a more muted tone.

The leaves and sentiment are from another retiring set, Kinda Eclectic. I used Cucumber Crush, full strength to stamp them. A little bit of Copper Thread is peeking out from behind the banner with the sentiment.

Next up is a set I only recently acquired - Penned & Painted. This set had been on my wishlist ever since the catalogue came out, and finally ordered it. So it was a huge shock to me  that it was on the retired list! I really thought it would carry over. I just love the sketchy look of it.
This is a two-step stamp set. One of the things I love about this is that each part of the image can be used by itself, as well as together as I did here.

To do this technique, I first stamped the background image of the flowers with Whisper White Craft ink. It is important to let this dry thoroughly before proceeding to the next step. Once it was dry, I used the wonderful new Watercolour Pencils to colour over the white. Once that was done, I stamped the detailed outline images with Archival Black ink. I love doing this technique on Crumb Cake cardstock, but decided to try it on Tip Top Taupe. Really like the effect!

In the middle of each flower, I did some random white dots using a Posca Paint Pen. To brighten things up a bit more, the smaller little flowers were stamped with Whisper White Craft ink. 

A little bit of linen thread is all the embellishment this needed. The sentiment is from another retiring set - Picture Perfect - also a surprise to me! I stamped it with Early Espresso on a piece of Tip Top Taupe and cut it with a banner die from the Project Life Cards & Labels Framelits set. I have used this framelits set a lot - and not for doing memory keeping. It's great to use on cards!

For my third project, I had to stay with Penned & Painted! This time I used another of the flower images, and did the same technique - this time on Crumb Cake cardstock - and coloured all of the blooms with the Pacific Point, Bermuda Bay and Daffodil Delight Watercolour Pencils.
I also used one of the splatter images from Gorgeous Grunge, inked with Crumb Cake ink and stamped off once, to add a bit of texture to the background. To set off the image panel, I used the Basic Black and white striped pattern from the Neutrals Designer Series Paper Stack, which is also retiring.

Although the title of our blog hop this month is Retirement Means Goodbye, I'm really not saying goodbye to any of the products I used here! Since I am primarily a hobby demo, I can keep  sets I really love and will use them in my mixed media projects. Mixed media is something I am just getting into,  and it's a great way to use a lot of my Stampin' Up stuff. Plus, it's a lot of fun!

Now you are ready to move on to visit Sheri Lee. She has some fabulous things in store for you! Just click on the 'Next' button below.

Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Watercooler Wednesday Challenge #115 - Gail's Clean & Simple Spring Theme

Ah - Spring! It must be spring somewhere. If it would stop raining and warm up just a bit, we would be awash in colour here on the west coast of Canada. I think Mother Nature forgot to turn the tap off. Guess that's why it is known as the 'Wet Coast'.

When I chose Spring as the theme for this challenge, I really thought it would be here. As it is, everything is greening up nicely. So that is what I focused on for my project this week.
Lovely As A Tree was the perfect choice. This classic stamp set has been in the Stampin' Up catalogue for as long as I've been a demonstrator (9 years now) - and way before that as well. It is truly versatile and if you search Google or Pinterest you will find literally hundreds of projects using it.

For this, I used the image that is a line of trees and stamped it with Sahara Sand onto Whisper White cardstock. Then I took the awesome Watercolour Pencils and coloured over the stamped image, using Early Espresso and Old Olive. I then went over that with a Blender Pen.

The image is cut out with the largest oval from the Stitched Shapes framelits. I used my Old Olive marker and ran it around the edges to ink it up, and also to emphasize the stitches.

It is mounted on a piece of DSP from the Serene Scenery Paper Stack. Love that Bokeh effect! This in turn is matted with Old Olive cardstock and then finished with a Thick Whisper White card base.

A very quick card to do - and it captures the greeness of spring.

Now off you go to visit Watercooler Wednesday and check out how the other Watercooler artists have interpreted spring. Then link up your project for us to be inspired!  

Wednesday, April 12, 2017

Watercooler Wednesday #114 - Penny's Colour Challenge

Penny has us playing with colour this week at Watercooler Wednesday - one of my favourite types of challenge. It's easy to get in a rut and reach for the same colours again and again. And we all have our favourite combos. So, a colour challenge is a good way to break out of the box.

Here is what Penny gave us to work with:
I do really like each of these colours, but don't think I have used them all together before. Since it's always so easy to reach for one of my flower-themed stamp sets - another rut I fall into all the time! - I looked for something different. And, it just so happened my Dragonfly Dreams was near the top of the pile. This is the result:
The dots from the set make a great border, mostly Pool Party with just a sprinkling of Calypso Coral. I first stamped the sold dragonfly image onto the Whisper White cardstock with Island Indigo - stamped off once for the bottom layer, and then stamped full strength for the detailed layer.

Next I die cut the dragonfly out of Calypso Coral cardstock and coated it liberally with Clear Wink of Stella. I placed it  over the stamped image, slightly offset to look like a shadow under the die cut. Here is a close-up of the dragonfly:
For some reason, when I went to fold the cardstock for my card base, I discovered it wasn't the correct size to score it a 4 1/4" So, rather than cut another piece, I improvised and took the opportunity to add a strip of Island Indigo to the inside. Like this:
You will also notice on the backside of the main image panel an array of the dots stamped in all three colours. I had initially done that when I first started, decided I didn't really like it, so I flipped the piece over and started over on the other side. But, as just an accent - it works!

What will you create with these lucious colours? Go to Watercooler Wednesday to see what the other artists have done, then show us your colours.


Wednesday, April 5, 2017

Watercooler Wednesday Challenge #113 - Libby's Sketch Challenge

Libby is this week's challenge host and she has chosen a fun sketch challenge for us:
I really like this sketch! It has a look that is very pleasing to the eye, I think, and lends itself well to any occasion, theme or colour combo.

Since I had just received yet another flower stamp set, I just had to play with it. Maybe I'm so drawn to the flower-themed sets because I can't grow them. I sure don't have the green thumb my Mom has!
The flower and dots are from Penned and Painted. I just love the sketchy, watercolour look of this 2-step stamp set. For the other two lines, I used Delicate Details. My colours are all from the retiring InColors:  Tip Top Taupe, Mint Macarron, and Watermelon Wonder.

Now it's your turn! Visit Watercooler Wednesday to check out how the other Watercooler Artists were inspired by this sketch and link up your projects.

Wednesday, March 29, 2017

Watercooler Wednesday Challenge #112 - Anything Goes

We have a bonus week this month - which means an Anything Goes Challenge. This leaves things wide open as far as the type of project you do, the colours you choose,  the theme of your project, etc.
I've been wanting to make succulents with the Oh, So Succulent Framelits ever since I got them - weeks ago. So, what better time to use them than for an Anything Goes Challenge!

Using Always Artichoke and Crumb Cake cardstocks, I cut a bunch using all the sizes. The Crumb Cake pieces are sponged with Rich Razzleberry and Craft Whisper White is used for the Always Artichoke. Each succulent has a Basic Rhinestone Jewel in the center.
I made a little container by wrapping the burlap ribbon around a jar lid. It is attached with Tear & Tape. Inside that, I put a bit of Spanish Moss. On a strip of Whisper White CS, I stamped the sentiment in Rich Razzleberry twice then folded it around a piece of bamboo skewer that I cut with the Craft & Rubber scissors (ret.).

Here are some close-ups:

What would you do for an Anything Goes Challenge? Visit Watercooler Wednesday and check out the awesome projects from all the Watercooler Artists and then link up yours!

Wednesday, March 22, 2017

Watercooler Wednesday Challenge #111 - Marsha's Masculine "Anything Goes" Challenge

It's time for another Masculine Challenge, hosted this time by Marsha.
I've been trying to get away from what seems to be an accepted  practice when creating masculine-themed cards - that is an instinct to use dark colours. Now, sometimes dark colours work. But, men like other colours too.

Since it is now offically Spring - yay! - I went to the Serene  Scenery DSP Paper Stack for that very spring-y pattern of lovely green leaves. And I paired it with an image from the Moon Lake stamp set.
I stamped the image with Archival Basic Black ink on watercolour paper. The colouring was done with an Aqua-Painter and ink. The sentiment is from Hey, Chick.

Then, using the Layering Ovals Framelits to cut out the coloured image and the Old Olive layer. A piece of Burlap Ribbon sets the image off from the background DSP. The card base is Tip Top Taupe.

Now, go to Watercooler Wednesday and check out the fabulous samples from the other Watercooler Artists! We are eagerly awaiting your creations.

Wednesday, March 15, 2017

Watercooler Wednesday Challenge #110

Easter is just around the corner and Heather has chosen an Easter Bunny theme for her Clean and Simple Challenge.
I could only find one stamp set among my collection with a bunny image in it. And it wasn't an Easter stamp set. But I had to go with it.
The bunny is from Thankful Forest Friends (retired). I inked the stamp with Crumb Cake and then added a bit of darker colour with a Soft Suede marker. the ears and nose  are colored  with Blushing Bride.

For the tree and grass, I went to Sheltering Tree, stamped in Soft Suede. Love all the branches on that tree - perfect for placing the eggs that are from a long-retired stamp set, Nature Walk. I used markers to colour the eggs using Sweet Sugarplum, Flirty Flamingo and Peekaboo Peach.

The sentiment is from a classic Stampin' Up! set - Teeny Tiny Wishes. This is a set I use constantly. It has a greeting for every occasion you could imagine!

My cardstock choices are Whisper White and Old Olive.

Check out Watercooler Wednesday to see what the other Watercooler Artists have done. Have fun with this Easter Bunny challenge and show us what you come up with!

Friday, March 10, 2017

Think outside the box!

Last weekend my upline, who is in Alberta where I used to live, put together a weekend long on-line stamp-a-thon for all of her downline. She did some Facebook Live videos and had challenges throughout the weekend.

It was a lot of fun!

One of the challenges was to think outside the box. That is, to use a Stampin' Up product in a different way to what it was intended. I had an inspiration to use a stamp set I had just used to create my design team project for this week's Watercooler Wednesday Challenge:
To create the background, I used the 3-part image from the Tie Dyed stamp set from the 2017 Occasions Catalogue. This set is designed to stamp all three parts, in different colours, or different shades of the same colour, one on top of the other. For my challenge card, because it is a colour challenge, I inked the largest stamp in full strength Island Indigo, the middle stamp in Island Indigo - stamped off once, and the smallest stamp in Pool Party - full strength.

As I was working on this, I kept thinking that the design reminded me of ammonites, which are the fossilized, hard shells of extinct mollusks. See what they look like here.

Now, back to the challenge. I was thinking about trying to use the stamp to create an ammonite. But, it wasn't coming together in my brain. But, then I had a lightbulb moment!

You know those big, big lollypops that are different colours, in a spiral? Here's what I came up with:
I stamped the image on Whisper White cardstock using Tangerine Tango, Peekaboo Peach and So Saffron. Then I embossed it using clear embossing powder. I did three coats of embossing to make it really glossy. After that, I cut it out using one of the circles in the Layering Circles Framelits.

The stick is a bamboo skewer, cut to length, and tied with a bit off Emerald Envy ribbon. The littles squiggles, stamped in the same colours as the lollypop, is a stamp from the Bithday Blast set and the sentiment is from So In Love.

What kinds of things can you come up with when thinking outside the box? It's fun to do!


Wednesday, March 8, 2017

Watercooler Wednesday Challenge 109

Colour challenges are fun! This week at Watercooler Wednesday, Heidi  has given us a pallette I find very soothing with just two shades of blue and two neutrals.
For this one, I went to the Tie Dyed stamp set, which has images in three parts. By stamping off the Island Indigo on one of the parts, I was able to get three shades of blue to create a fun background that was very quick and easy to do.
The background is stamped on Very Vanilla cardstock, matted on Basic Black and mounted on an Island Indigo base.

For my focal point, I  used the image from Bella & Friends, stamped it in Memento Black ink and coloured with the new Watercolour Pencils and a blender pen. The balloon has a bit of sparkle thanks to Wink of Stella.

Now let's see what you do with Heidi's Colour Challenge! Check out what the rest of the Watercooler Artists have done by going to Watercooler Wednesday.


Wednesday, March 1, 2017

Watercooler Wednesday Challenge 108 - Gail's Sketch Challenge

It's my turn to host the Watercooler Wednesday Challenge this week, and I've chosen this Sketch Challenge:
I think it is a very simple sketch, but has a lot of possibilities to make it as intricate as you want. Remember, the sketch can be flipped upside down, or turned on its side - whatever inspires you. As long as it is still recognizable as the basic sketch.

However, I decided to use it just as is:
I'm trying to channel spring - the first colour that popped into my mind was Cucumber Crush. Mostly because it is a lovely, spring-y shade of green. But also, because it is part of the 2015-2017 In-Color Collection that will be retiring at the end of May.

This may make some people sad, but I like to think that it is making way for a whole new, exciting set of trendy shades!

For the diagonal bottom part, I stamped every one of the designs from the Sale-a-Bration set, Delicate Details, using Crumb Cake ink on Whisper White cardstock. I really love the look of Crumb Cake on the white!

The image panel is cut with the Stitched Shapes Framelit. No, the collection doesn't have a rectangle, but a quick search on YouTube brings up a lot of tutorials on how to use the square framelits to create a rectangle. I followed a tutorial by Bibi Cameron.

I have to confess, however, that it took me three tries to get it right. And she makes it look so easy!! Really - it's not that difficult. Guess I'm just a slow learner.

The leaf image is from Kinda Eclectic and the sentiment is from the Tin of Cards stamp set - both stamped with Cucumber Crush.

And that's it! Check out Watercooler Wednesday and take a look at what the other Watercooler Artists have done. Link yours up - we love to see your projects!

Wednesday, February 22, 2017

Watercooler Wednesday Challenge 107 - Penny's Masculine Challenge

It's time for another Masculine Challenge, this time hosted by Penny.
I recently read a thread on a demo-only Facebook page, where the discussion was about using colours on masculine themed cards instead of using the darker, earth-toned  colours.

Well, my card uses Crumbcake, primarily. Not because I think I have to use it because I was doing a masculine card. Rather, I used it because it is a colour I love to use for all kinds of projects.

But, I did also use Very Vanilla cardstock, Copper Embossing Powder and Rich Razzleberry ink.

First, on the Crumbcake card base, I sponged the edges with Crumbcake ink, then used a little texture stamp from the High Tide stamp set, inked with Rich Razzleberry, and stamped all along the edges. Kind of looks like red wine, I thought after I had done it!

The first layer, I stamped with the grapes, corks and jugs from Tuscan Vineyard, the brick image from Ghoulish Grunge, and one of the splatter stamps from Gorgeous Grunge - all in Crumbcake ink.

The image panel is the vintage card from Guy Greetings, done in Copper Embossing Powder. I used Rich Razzleberry ink to stamp the word 'enjoy' from the So In Love stamp set. Then I stamped over it with the same texture stamp from High Tide using Rich Razzleberry ink, stamped off once.

I think this card could accompany a gift of a nice bottle of wine for that wine-loving man in your life!

Want to how the other Watercooler Artists have done this challenge? Just visit Watercooler Wednesday. After you are inspired, share your project with us!

Thursday, February 16, 2017

The Wacky Watercooler Spring Fever February Blog Hop
Spring is just around the corner! Although, I'm sure it doesn't feel like it in those areas that are still being hit by storms.

Welcome to our Spring Fever Blog Hop! If you are a regular follower, you know that our Hops are circular. For those who are new to Blog Hops, you can either work your way down  the list by visiting the Wacky Watercooler Stamping blog, or if you join in at any point, just keep clicking on the 'Next' button at the bottom to go to the next blog.

If you are following the line-up in order, you have just come from Deborah's blog. Weren't her projects wonderful! 

For my first project, I was all set to jump on the succulent bandwagon. It seems the paper-crafting world has been taken by storm and everyone is making such cute assortments of succulents. So, I got out my Oh So Succulent Bundle - stamp set and matching Framelits, grabbed some Always Artichoke cardstock and my Big Shot, and started cutting out succulent parts.

I got to this point - and everything went off the rails!
As I looked at this, all I could see was a stencil! So I grabbed some Whisper White cardstock, a piece of Stampin' Sponge and a So Saffron ink pad.
Because I had placed the dies as close together as possible in order to maximize cardstock use, I used Post-it Notes to cover up areas I didn't want the ink to spread into. I liked how it was going, so I covered the whole piece, using So Saffron and Bermuda Bay inks. Then filled in the spaces with some of the smaller images from the stamp set using Peekaboo Peach and Emerald Envy inks. Here's what I ended up with:
After it was trimmed down, I mounted it onto a Bermuda Bay card base. A sentiment from Tin of Cards was stamped onto Whisper White cardstock with Emerald Envy ink, then cut out with Lots of Labels Framelits, with a Bermuda Bay mat behind and two little So Saffron enamel dots. Here is the finished card:
And, umm, I still haven't made the succulents. But I will!

Next up is a card using Inside the Lines Designer Series Paper and the Watercolour Pencils. This DSP is so much fun for anyone who likes to colour!
Colours used are: Real Red, Daffodil Delight, Old Olive and Pacific Point. I used a Blender Pen to smooth out the pigment. The sentiment is from Rose Wonder, stamped in Archival Black ink, and the cardbase is Old Olive.

Up until two days ago I was still pondering what to do for my third project, when up popped a video on my Facebook newsfeed that grabbed my attention. It was shared by LeeAnn Greff, a fellow Stampin' Up! Demonstrator. She has inspired my on many occasions. Thank you, LeeAnn!

Her project uses the Stitched Shapes Framelits and Metallic Thread to do Paper Embroidery. Here's a close-up:
I used Thick Whisper White cardstock (recommended for this technique) to cut the Stitched Shapes circle. For the embroidery part I used the Copper Metallic Thread. The bigger circle is Sweet Sugarplum, and the flower is from Touches of Texture, stamped with Sweet Sugarplum for the focal image, and So Saffron in the background. Here is the full card:
The sentiment is from the Window Shopping stamp set.

And now it's time for you to carry on and enjoy the amazing projects Sheri has for you! Just click on the 'Next' button below. Thanks for stopping by!

Wednesday, February 15, 2017

Watercooler Wednesday Challenge 106 - Heidi's Clean & Simple Challenge

This week we have a really fun Clean & Simple Challenge, hosted by Heidi, with a bit of a twist - Sparkle!
There are so many choices I could have used for the sparkle part, from the Stampin Up! Glimmer Paper, to the glitter embossing powder from the Holiday Catalogue - even Wink of Stella.

But, I didn't use any of those. What popped into my mind was rhinestones. And just to be a bit different, I used them with the lightbulb image from the Pun Intended stamp set.
The card base is Crushed Curry and the only ink used is Archival Basic Black. I had first coloured the filament part of the light with both clear and gold Wink of Stella, but then went and covered it up with a Faceted Button (ret.). The rays of 'light' coming from the bulb are the rhinestones.

Very Clean & Simple with Sparkle!

So what will you think up? We can't wait to see. Check out Watercooler Wednesday Challenge to see what the other artists have done, then link up your project.

Have fun!

Wednesday, February 8, 2017

Watercooler Wednesday Challenge 105 - Marsha's Colour Challenge

Is it Wednesday, already? Yes! And we have a really fun Colour Challenge at Watercooler Wednesday Challenge, hosted by Marsha. She has chosen a great group of colours - but you don't need to use all of them - unless you want to.
I was initially tempted to reach for one of my many flower-themed stamp sets, but then I remembered seeing a Facebook Live video posted recently by Stampin' Up!'s CEO, Sara Douglass, in which she demonstrates a different way to do a watercolour wash. It was perfect for highlighting three of these colours.
I interpreted three of the challenge colours as Rich Razzleberry, Peekaboo Peach and Mint Macaron. This technique is so simple! Start with a piece of Shimmery White Cardstock. Take an ink refill of each colour and drop it onto a craft mat - or an acrylic block.

Use your Aquapainter and squeeze a bit of water into your first drop of ink and mix it up a bit. Then just paint a swath of ink across the Shimmery White. Repeat with each colour. Let dry. I love the richness of colour you get with this technique.

I added the dragonflies cut with the Dragonfly Dreams framelits and stamped the sentiment from Love Sparkles (found in the 2017 Occasions Catalogue) with Rich Razzleberry. The card base is also Rich Razzleberry.

To see what the other Watercooler Artists have done, visit Watercooler Wednesday. After you've been inspired, link up your creation.

Wednesday, February 1, 2017

Watercooler Wednesday Challenge 104 - Kath's Sketch Challenge

At the Watercooler this week we have a Sketch Challenge, hosted by Kath.
This design has a lot of elements but is very nicely balanced.  I  decided to go with a square card - made mine 4" X 4" - and it was a perfect opportunity to highlight my current favourite DSP - the Cupcakes and Carousels DSP Stack.
My card base is Bermuda Bay, one of the colours in this DSP. The three little elements at the top were done by stamping a tiny flower image from the Oh So Succulent stamp set in Bermuda Bay ink. Then I covered them with glue from the Fine Tip Glue Pen. Which made them a bit tricky to photograph. They look a little weird!

The sentiment is also  from Oh So Succlent, again stamped in Bermuda Bay.

For the oval, I used Very Vanilla cardstock, another colour in the DSP, and cut it out with the Stitched Shapes Framelits. The flower is from Oh So Succlent, stamped in So Saffron, also a colour in the DSP, on Very Vanilla then cut out with one of the dies in the Succulents Framelits.

I did some sponging around the edges of both the oval and the flower shape. The die cuts out little petals within the bigger petals and I used tweezers to bend them up a bit so they caught some of the sponged colour. A So Saffron dot from the Subtles Collection of Enamel Shapes finishes off the middle.

Visit Watercooler Wednesday and check out what the other Watercooler Artists have done with this sketch. When you have been inspired, link up your creation. We can't wait to see what you do!

Watercool Wednesday Challenge #116 - Kath's Masculine "Anything Goes" Challenge

If you are a card maker who finds it, well, challenging to create masculine themed projects, you will find tons of inspiration at the Waterc...