Saturday, 20 May 2017

Please vote for me!

Hello crafty friends!
Here in Canada we are enjoying a beautiful long weekend of spring weather, barbecuing, cycling, admiring tulips, etc.

So why am I posting a Christmas card, you ask?

Over at Stamp Nation, there is a contest going on. You enter by posting a card made with Stamp Nation goodies, and ask your friends to vote for your entry.
Here is a cute card I designed last Christmas for the Caring Hearts Card Drive. It features the candy-cane strip background, stamped tone-on-tone and heat-embossed with clear powder, the frame die and sentiment from the Candy Cane lane collection, and finally, that adorable deer. We dearly love our even-toed ungulates (I had to look that up on Wikipedia) here in Canada: caribou, elk, moose, and of course, reindeer (although I think they may live in Scandinavia).

So get outside and enjoy the sun, but first visit THIS BLOG to vote for our cute friend.

Happy crafting,
Caroline

Monday, 15 May 2017

Meet....Jack!

 Cross Canada Blog Hop
Favorite New Paper Pack

This month, Close to My Heart released its latest catalogue, Seasonal Expressions 2.  It contains four new paper packs for your viewing pleasure. There is also a special paper pack created for National Scrap-booking Month, Live Beautifully.
Hop along with these talented, creative Canadians for some sweet sneak peaks.

If you've come from Nicky's blog, Simply Artistic, you're in the right place. If you wish to start on the East Coast, head to Michelle's blog, HERE and work your way west.

I chose to feature Jack.  As the mother of three boys (and yes, even my dog is a male) I'm always happy to find products for creating more masculine-themed projects. Unicorns and fairies just don't cut it...  Jack features a strong colour palette of red, black, grey and green, and some beautiful plaid patterns. There is also a bit of a lumberjack theme going on, which is PERFECT for the CFL team in my town, The Ottawa Red-Blacks, and their mascot, Big Joe Mufferaw.
 Ottawa will host the Grey Cup this autumn, and I'm sure I'll have some photos to archive from that event.

On to some projects!
Card #1

This release includes this BEARY cute stamp and die set. I used the bear claw paper with the zip-strip attached to make a backdrop for the bear. The "earth" is black glitter paper. The grey plaid mat is a PictureMyLife card from the  paper pack. I popped up the bear's snout and the banner with foam tape, folded his ears forward for some dimension and gave the nose and eyes some shine with Liquid Glass. Here's the inside of the card:
More use of the zip-strip, the die-cut "Happy" (from Happy Birthday Thin-cut) and rest of the sentiment from the Jack-Cardmaking stamp set.

Card #2
All those plaid patterns were screaming cozy flannel shirt, so I went with a patchwork/quilted look for the second card. I cut strips of paper in varying widths, as well as some of the zip-strips, and applied them to a piece of card stock which had been covered in double-sided tape. Then I ran the piece through my BigShot with a retired embossing folder. I sanded the edges and the embossed hearts for a worn look.  The sentiment comes from the Operation Smile stamp set, True Love, and the black glitter heart is cut using the Heart Thin-cuts.  Love the lumberjack paper! Reminds me of the NHL during the play-offs...

Layout 

This two page lay-out design is available from your CTMH consultant, and features the hero paper, a medley of trees. Perfect for pictures of camping or other adventures in the great outdoors. 
 I used the camper van from the stamp set Camping Life and the big Happy Thin-cut for the title--"Happy camper..." The grey twine and black enamel dots are Jack complements. 
On the companion page, the trees are stamped and hand-cut with a retired stamp set, but the Jack Scrapbooking stamps +Thin Cuts set includes two tree stamps which would look great. The grey plaid tree was made using the Art Philosophy Cricut Cartridge, which is full of useful images.  I worked in a little more of the grey twine by using a Base-and-Bling adhesive circle, and winding some twine on top--looks like a rope or a cross-section of a tree, right?

Your next stop on the hop is Sheena at Kanata Newf.
Remember to leave comments and love as you hop, and contact your CTMH consultant to order any of the items which catch your fancy!

Happy hopping,
Caroline 

Saturday, 22 April 2017

Always chasing rainbows... Addicted to CAS

Good morning, crafty friends.

I created this graduation card for my son following a Stamp Nation challenge.
It looks deceptively simple, but contains a surprise.

It also fits the current code word at Addicted to CAS, which is RAINBOW!
You will note I didn't use the entire seven-colour palette for a proper rainbow. I focused on my son's favorite colours, one of which is purple.  I used Catherine Pooler inks, which work wonderfully for blending. I masked off the area for the rainbow and applied ink with a foam blending-tool. Next I used the MISTI to add the sentiment in black ink.  I added thin strips of black cardstock to define the rainbow section. A few stars and sequins hide some smudges!
Here's the inside:
An explosion of sentiments and fire-work-ish images.
 
The challenge at Addicted to CAS runs for another week--make sure to check it out.

Thanks for taking a look today!
Happy crafting,
Caroline

Supplies:
Catherine Pooler inks: Tiki Torch, Tiara, Lime Rickey, Aquatini, Something Borrowed, Flirty Fuschia and Midnight (black)
Cardstock: Catherine Pooler-white; Michael's-black
Stamp sets: Catherine Pooler, from the "Perfect Reason" collection
Sequins: Close to My Heart

Saturday, 15 April 2017

Cross Canada Hop--Alcohol Markers

Hello there, crafty friends!
Spring has finally sprung here in Ontario, just in time for the lovely long Easter weekend.
Canadian Close to My Heart consultants are celebrating with a blog hop
featuring ShinHan Twin-Touch alcohol markers.

If you've come from Dominique's blog, you are on the right track. If you'd like to start at the beginning, go to Michelle's blog where you will find the entire list of participants.

I have loved playing with alcohol markers since taking a Copic colouring course a few years back.
Close to My Heart sells 24 colours of the ShinHan Twin-Touch markers, along with a colourless blender pen; they work just as well as Copics for many colouring effects.
On today's card, I'm showcasing a couple of different techniques:

1)    No need to worry about not having just the right marker for your project; you can blend two colours together without contaminating either marker.
Scribble the darker shade onto an acrylic stamping block. This functions as your palette.

Pick up the colour on the block with the lighter shade of marker; you will get an intermediate shade to add to your project. To clean the lighter marker, just use it on white card stock until the colour runs true again.
Example: for the bunny's shirt, I coloured with Y22 Golden Yellow, then scribbled some YR24 Marigold onto my block. I picked up the darker orange colour with the yellow marker and used it to add shading to the image.
 I did the same with the bunny's shorts, using B68 Turquoise Blue and BG61 Peacock Green.

2)  I also created a fun piece of patterned paper, using my markers to make matching plaid. I added adhesive to the back of a piece of white card stock and stuck it to my Versamat.

I used the diagonal marks on the mat and the 14" ruler to draw parallel lines in Turquoise and Tender Pink.
 Then I rotated the mat 90 degrees and drew lines in that orientation to complete the plaid.

The ShinHan markers have two ends: a fine bullet tip and a broad tip. You can create lines of different width depending on which side of the broad tip you drag over the paper.
The speed with which you drag the marker across the paper will also have an effect--the slower you go, the more ink can sink into the paper, making a slightly wider line.

Break out your markers and give these techniques a try!
The next stop on the hop is Sheena at Kanata Newf.
Please remember to leave comments and love as you hop, quick like a bunny!

Happy Easter,
Caroline

P.S:  Next month's hop on May 15th will feature new paper packs from Close to My Heart.

Supplies:  all supplies Close to My Heart, unless otherwise indicated.
Stamp set: Easter Bunny/February 2017 stamp of the month
Ink: Archival Black, Fern
Markers: ShinHan Twin-Touch markers GY234, Y222, YR24, P282, P83, B68, BG61, RP198
Copic Markers in E31 and E33, R20.
Shimmer trim in green
Embossing folder: Lifestyle crafts/houndstooth
Versamat 12x12 crafting mat
14" ruler
Contact your local Close to My Heart consultant to purchase any of the items featured here.

Monday, 10 April 2017

Freshly Made Sketches & National Tartan Day...

Good morning, crafty friends.
This post is a little late for the celebration, but last Thursday, April 6th, was National Tartan Day in Canada. It's not an official holiday, just an observance, and has been in effect since 2010. It commemorates the signing of a document of independence in Scotland in 1320. People of Scottish descent can celebrate and wear their family tartan!

I've been playing around with plaid lately, with water colour paint and with alcohol markers. This is a paper version of the clan Macdonald tartan. It's much more beautiful in real life!
 The inspiration this week over at Freshly Made Sketches was all about squares.

Plaids and tartans are definitely all about right angles!  I decided to feature a piece of water-coloured plaid, with some of the stripes done with  opalescent gold paint.

 All squares were cut with Lil'Inker Designs' Stitched Mats square dies, then attached to a 5" square card-base. Along with the water-colour panel, I cut squares from Close to My Hearts' fundamentals collection. These papers have white designs on one side, with embossing on the other. The sentiment is from Catherine Pooler Designs' "Hello World" stamp set. Pretty easy card to put together!

Make sure to check out the amazing submissions over at Freshly Made Sketches.

Fare ye weel!
Caroline



Thursday, 30 March 2017

Mixed Media Mayhem!


Good morning, crafty friends.

I had to jump on board the Distress Oxide ink band-wagon after seeing several people's demonstration of their potential and:
  • ordered a half dozen colours to try out;
  • discovered a bottle of Frisket, the masking fluid, probably purchased sometime in 2016 and never opened, under a pile of patterned paper on the craft table;
  • needed a new "miss you" card for my hubby's suitcase...
All the right ingredients for an experiment!

Here's my card:


I bought this stamp set from Close to My Heart last year---my DH was a chemistry student when we met, so the sentiment is perfect!
I started by stamping the beakers onto the card base with archival black ink. I used a paper mask to give the illusion of one beaker being behind the other.
Then I covered them both, and the sentiment with the Frisket liquid. It's pretty easy to use, and dries translucent so you can see what is underneath.
Then I went to town with three colours of Distress Oxide ink: spiced marmalade, broken china and cracked pistachio. I smooshed the ink onto a craft mat, spritzed with water and then dragged the card base through the ink. Dried it off and began again; added some splatters... Very satisfying and completely random. 
Once it looked like a small explosion, I rubbed off the Frisket and coloured the beakers with alcohol markers. Added some bubbles from the stamp set with Oxide inks. And coated the beakers with Liquid Glass so they'd look glassy.
I just love the result!
 Let me know what you think, or tell me about your experiments with Distress Oxides.

Have a creative day!
Caroline

P.S.: getting in, better late than never,  to Kathy Racoosin's 30 Day Colouring Challenge, on Day 30!
Also linking up to Simon Says Stamp's National Craft Month post HERE

Monday, 27 March 2017

Freshly Made Sketches #280



Good morning, crafty friends.

I've been working on spring birthday cards and was inspired by a YouTube video from Jennifer McGuire this week, as well as the current Freshly Made Sketch:
Jennifer was doing some ink-swiping with balloons. They certainly say "celebration," perfect for my 15-year-old niece's birthday (not too cutesy). The only balloon stamps I had were not big enough in scale for this sketch, so I decided to use patterned paper instead. I free-hand drew the balloons onto the paper with a coloured pencil and cut them out.
Then I popped the one in front up with a spring, for dimension and playfulness.
I used a well-loved Cuttlebug embossing folder for the background, which also serves as the sentiment. Some twine tied to the balloons completes this simple card.

Stop by the Freshly Made Sketches blog for some more inspiration!

Have a crafty week,
Caroline

Supplies:

Card stock: Close to My Heart white daisy; patterned paper from retired Magical paper pack
Embossing folder: Happy Birthday from Provocraft/Cuttlebug
Twine: Michael's
Ink:  Derwent Inktense watercolor pencil
Spring: Close to My Heart