Sunday, February 26, 2017

Birthdays and New Challenge Blog

     I've gotten very little done in the way of new cards for the last few days so it's a good thing I had worked ahead on my DT commitments for the upcoming week.  :-D  Usually, I post something nearly every day but I missed yesterday and won't have anything else until Tuesday.  I am going to share a couple of quick birthday cards I did for my stash today but that's about all I have.

     Well, I could share with you the reason I haven't gotten many cards done or posted.  I've been involved in starting up a new challenge blog!  It's called 2 Crafty Critter Crazies and our first challenge will be going live on April 1 (no, not an April Fool's joke!)   We're a true "Anything Goes" challenge in that it's not limited to cards or even just paper crafts.  You could enter mixed media, paintings, crochet, quilts or other fabric projects, whatever your heart desires!   The one requirement is that your project MUST have a "Critter" featured on it.  We define "Critters" as any animal with fur, feathers, fins, scales, even insects, as long as they are the featured item on your project.

     The blog looks a bit bare right now but I'm still working on the overall design.  We have one post done, a couple of additional pages for "Winners" and "Rules," but most importantly, we have the "Follow" and "Follow by Email" tools added to the side bar!  If you'd like to visit and become a follower, we'd love to have you.  That way, you'll always know when a new challenge posts and who our fabulous sponsor will be for that challenge.  We'd love to see our Followers list grow rapidly.  :-D

     OK, here are the two cards I managed to get done this morning.


For this one, I based it on the sketch at Sketch Saturday.



     No images and no coloring today.  I was playing with my latest dies.  On the first card, the "Happy Birthday" is from a die by Lawn Fawn which actually says "happy birthday to you" but I cut it down.  The other die cut is from a die by Tutti Designs, my first die from that company.

     On the second card, the "Birthday" is by CUTplorations (STAMPlorations) and the "Cheers" is by Cheery Lynn.  The background cut is from a die by Memory Box.

     Challenges:
Brown Sugar
Cut It Up
Jo's Scrap Shack
Outlawz PAM
Outlawz Twisted Thursday

     I hope you'll come visit us at 2 Crafty Critter Crazies and play along in our monthly challenges over there.  Not long to wait now.  Happy Stamping.  NanaConnie

Friday, February 24, 2017

Milking Your Birthday

     And a good Friday morning to all of you!  If it's Friday, then you know that means another challenge is starting at QKR Stampede.  At the beginning of this year, QKR Stampede became an "Anything Goes" challenge but each week we give you an optional twist if you want to use it.   So this week, the optional twist is "Birthdays."  Here's what I did, using the image "High Centered" and the sentiment "All It's Worth."  I always give you links to the digital stamps but, for those of you who dearly love rubber, remember that most of the QKR digis are also available as rubber stamps.


     Of course, I used my ProMarkers to color the image and then cut it with a die from Spellbinders.   I used another, larger die from that same set to cut the black mat.  The kraft background has been embossed with my "Linen" folder.  I liked the kraft and black together so decided that I'd keep it as monochromatic as possible.  That also fit in with the masculine, CAS design.

     I added the two, different, black ribbons and used another of my wrapped burlap-twine bows.  I make those with burlap twine, wound around a chipboard strip and then wrapped with a fabric piece.  Before I take the twine off the chipboard, I brush it lightly with "Fray-Check" which stiffens it and keeps it from separating as I slide it off.  Clearly, bows (handmade or otherwise) are my favorite embellishments.  I use them on everything!  :-D

     Challenges:
CAS  on Sunday
Die Cuttin' Divas
Digi Choosday
Glitter n Sparkle
House that Stamps Built
Inspiration Destination
Kraftin' Kimmie
Moving Along with the Times
Ribbon Girl
Tuesday Throwdown
   
     I hope your week has gone well and that you have fun and wonderful plans for the weekend, even if all you plan is to have a veg-out weekend in front of the TV.  :-D  Happy Stamping.  NanaConnie

Thursday, February 23, 2017

Defining "Middle Age"

     Most of us think of "middle age" as somewhere between 45 and 65 or perhaps even as late as 50 to 65 but as I recently learned it spans a much broader period of time.  We all know that one is a 'baby' up to the later stages of walking and then kids suddenly become 'toddlers.'  Usually, that label stays until somewhere around 3 (maybe 4) but is definitely gone before they start school.  Most of those years, up to and sometimes including Kindergarten, those sweet children take afternoon naps, much to the pleasure of their mothers or other caregivers.

     But at some point, the naps disappear, usually within a few months of the child insisting that naps are simply no longer needed, even if they are yawning as they protest !  That truth about life - that naps aren't needed - remains with us until a short while after retirement, somewhere between the ages of 65 and 70.  At that point, we suddenly discover that those long-forgotten, childhood naps are a wonderful thing, and that now we have the leisure to take naps again whenever the inclination grabs us.  Family and friends learn not to call on the phone or send text messages between the hours of noon and 2:00 p.m., at least not if they expect to get an immediate reply.

     Coming to terms with that realization, and reinventing "nap time" in my own life has led me to the redefine "middle age."  You'll see what I mean if you read the sentiment on this birthday card I just finished.


I was looking at the sketch from Mojo Monday
and although I made it more CAS, you can still see
the basic design, including the twine.

 

     This adorable little pajama boy came from Limited Runs and is the freebie offered for their Progressive challenge on their Facebook page.

     I colored him with my ProMarkers, fussy cut him and mounted him on the striped paper using dimensional dots.  I wanted the stripes to look like wallpaper and I think it pretty well does.  The black and blue color combo is a favorite and I know my friend, Lynn, will love it!

     I added the sparkly twine and the sentiment and called it finished.  Afterall, it's intended to be a masculine birthday card so little by way of embellishment was needed.

     Challenges:
A Gem of a Challenge
Art Impressions
Crafting from the Heart
Crafting with an Attitude
Jo's Scrap Shack
Lil Patch of Crafty Friends
Moving Along with the Times
Ribbon Girl

     That's it for today.  Happy Stamping and enjoy the rest of the week.  NanaConnie    

Wednesday, February 22, 2017

Digging in the Dirt

     I'm just so happy to be playing in challenges again at From the Heart Stamps, including their "I {heart} Sketches" challenges.  I've also been on a couple of new shopping binges in their store since Faith got back and the challenges started up again.  However, the image I used today is one I've had for a while but just hadn't used before now.


I used I {heart} Sketches and also the colors.


     I used both chalks and ProMarkers to color the image, then cut it and distressed the edges.  I matted it with some pink CS, trimmed it to fit, and distressed those edges also.  The sentiment is from that same set and worked so perfectly with all the dog bones buried in the garden.  :-D

     The ribbon was hiding in my stash and I think it came from Really Reasonable Ribbon.

     Challenges:
A Bit More Time to Craft
A Perfect Time to Craft
Chalk n Stock
Crafting from the Heart
Crafty Awesomeness
Creatalicious
Not Just Cards
Open-Minded Crafting Friends
Outlawz Greetings (flower/layers/pink)
Pammie's Inky Pinkies
Petal Lu

     Well, we're half way through the week and the weekend will be here before you know it.  We've had the driest day today since the long weekend started last Friday with pouring rain and more washed out streets and highways.  Yesterday and today they've been able to get repair crews working so the the roads are open again, although there are still cautions and warnings on some of the less traveled streets where repairs haven't yet been done.  Fortunately, nothing like that close to my home.  Happy Stamping.  NanaConnie

Tuesday, February 21, 2017

Beautiful Bride

     I have the honor of being a Guest Designer at Through the Craft Room Door this week and the challenge is being sponsored by Digistamps4Joy.  I used their lovely "Bedazzled Bride" image.


     I challenged myself this time to try doing white-on-white again.  I've tried it a few times in the past and have never been happy with the results.  However, I admit to really liking this one and being proud of it.  :-D

     I did color some of the image with ProMarkers (her skin & hair) and a bit of gold paint pen to highlight the embroidery on her dress.  I used an out-of-the-box technique to die cut the image with one of my oldest dies from Spellbinders.  I layered that onto two more die cut frames, both by Spellbinders, and I used dimensional tape to separate the layers, adding texture and dimension.  Both of the lower layers are "Linen" embossed with a folder.

     I decided that I really wanted to showcase the die cuts so I didn't add any flowers, or lace, or ribbons, or any of the more common embellishments for wedding cards.  I think it's more than enough as it it.

     Challenges:
Color Crazy Craft
Crafting from the Heart
Crafty Calendar
Hiding in My Craft Room
Jo's Scrap Shack
Lemon Shortbread
Lil Patch of Crafty Friends
Outlawz Twisted Thurs.
Scrapy Land
Word Art Weds.

     It would be great to see you playing along at Through the Craft Room Door this week.  Remember, their theme is always "Anything Goes" and you might win a fabulous prize from Digistamps4Joy!  Happy Stamping.  NanaConnie

Monday, February 20, 2017

Dream Dress

    It's February 20 and time for the start of our most recent challenge at Sheepski Designs Facebook page.  I'm using Andrea's image called "Dream Dress" which you can find here.


     I'm going to use this card for a young lady who is attending her first-ever Winter Formal Dance.  Don't you think that's a perfect image for such an occasion?  Andrea told us when she drew this one, she based it on her own wedding dress and I think it would be fabulous used for an elegant bridal shower or wedding card, also.

     I used my ProMarkers to color the image, then cut and matted it with dies from Cheery Lynn.  The white mat has been run through my 'Linen' embossing folder so it has some wonderful light texture.  I chose two different ribbons in light and navy blue, and added a white bow with a pearl.   I know this would have been a perfect card to use lace but once again, I grabbed the ribbons instead.  I guess I must prefer ribbon or else I simply forget the laces because they are stored further away and I usually have at least scraps of ribbon right on my desk.  I'm sure convenience is often a factor!  :-D

    Both background papers came from my stash of paper scraps and I chose them because they were so well suited to my overall monochromatic, blue, color combo.  I love the texture created by all the layers and the ribbons.

     Challenges:
As You Like It
Colour Crazy Craft
Crafty Ribbons
Creates and Makes
Creative Fingers
Lemon Shortbread
Outlawz Twisted Thurs.
Polkadoodles
Take It, Make It

     Come play along with us this month and then get ready for a monthly challenge starting on the Sheepski Designs Challenges blog site on April 1, 2017 (No, that's not an April Fool joke!)   We'll be having challenges on both the blog and our Facebook page from that point on and I'll be moving over to the blog DT.  Hope to see you both places.  Happy Stamping.  NanaConnie

Sunday, February 19, 2017

What's Your Birthday Number?

     I had such a delightful encounter in the grocery line yesterday and it inspired the sentiment on this card.  I was behind a mom with two kids, the older a girl of 7 and the younger a boy of 4 who was riding in the cart.   As we stood there, he engaged me in conversation to let me know that it was his birthday and he was now 4!  Obviously, he'd learned that before that momentous day, he was 3 (and could say so) but now he was trying very hard to figure out the magic of suddenly being 4 and having to learn that instead.

     Toward the end of our conversation, he asked me, "What's your birthday number?"  His mother tried mightily to shush him but it was a question to which he clearly wanted an answer.  I smiled at mom and, turning to him, fessed up my actual age, which is knocking on the door of the 70s.  :-D   He thought for a brief moment and then asked, "Is that a lot?"  I had to laugh out loud and admitted that, yes, indeed, it was a lot.

      Driving home, I decided that it was a number of which I should be very proud!  There are lots of people in this world who never make it this far.  So, I made this card and added the sentiment in celebration of my own birthday which is next month and, yes, I'm proud of my 'birthday number.'


     This cupcake kitten image is from the Sasayaki #7 Progressive Challenge.  I used my polychromos pencils and a couple of ProMarkers to color the image, then cut it with QuicKutz oval dies.  I also cut two mats for it from scrap pieces of CS left on my desk from making Valentines over the last couple of weeks.  I'm trying to use up all the scraps of red rather than just tossing them in the trash.

     Other scraps include the dp and the twine.  I added the cat charm for a bit of interest and texture.  I also used one of my satin bows to cover a blemish on the card front where I had attached the charm.

     Challenges:
613 Avenue Create
Catch the Bug (ribbon/red/charm)
Crafty Cardmakers
Digi Choosday
Outlawz Festive Friday
Pixie's Snippets
Sweet Stampers
TTCRD
World Wide Open DT

     More clouds and more gray sky but the weather people are saying no rain today.  However, tomorrow is a different story and we will have rain again.  Another great excuse to stay in and craft.  Happy Stamping.  NanaConnie

Saturday, February 18, 2017

Always Stretch Before Any Exercise!

     Today's card fits into the category of "Everything I need to Know, I Learned from My Cat."  I have a friend who loves to jog and run and do all forms of bizarre exercise, and she's forever encouraging me to stop crafting and run.  What is she - nuts?

     My feline fur babies have taught me that before undertaking anything strenuous (like wandering over to the food dish), one should take a long and leisurely stretch, and maybe even sit down for a few minutes afterward to consider whether or not the trip to the food dish is really necessary right this instant.  :-D


     The image came from the progressive challenge on the Facebook page at Dragon's Lair. While the silhouettes didn't require any real coloring, I did add white to the eyes and a bit of glitter to make them sparkle.  I decided on a Red and Black combo because it's one of my favorite to make things very striking.  The sentiment was printed with a computer font, hand cut and mounted onto dimensional dots.

     The ribbon was left over from my Christmas stash and I tied the bowtie bow with satin ribbon.  The image is cut with a square die (Spellbinders), the edges distressed, and I layered that onto mulberry paper.  It's very CAS but my friend will appreciate the simplicity since she's definitely not into fussy and frilly.

     Challenges:
Angie's Digital Stamps
Crafting from the Heart
Crafty Sentiments
Di's Digi Designs
Get Creative
Jo's Scrap Shack
Pammie's Inky Pinkies
Scrapper's Delights
Stamping Sensations

     Well, the rain has stopped momentarily and we even have some sunshine peeking through but the skies are still gray, not blue, so I'm staying inside.  There'll be no nonsense about running, jogging, or even stretching today!  Happy Stamping.  NanaConnie

Friday, February 17, 2017

Eggs for the Easter Bunny

     Friday again and that means another new challenge theme at QKR Stampede.  Of course, we're always Anything Goes but we also give you an optional twist if you want to use it and this week the theme is "Bling or Sparkle."  I thought it would be a great time to get my first Easter card done for this year.  I used "Gathering Eggs" as my image.   Just an FYI, that link will take you to the new store which now combines all the different brand names (Artful Stamper, Biblical Impressions, Eureka, PK Glitz. and QKR Stampede) owned by this company on one site!


     This QKR Stampede image is colored with my ProMarkers and cut with a die from Spellbinders, one of my earliest die sets.  I used another die from the set to cut the black mat.  I used glittered paper behind the image and then cut three egg shapes from striped paper and added microfine glitter to them.   BTW, that blue glittered paper came from the inside of a candy box lid, duly recycled so that it wouldn't go to waste.  :-D

     I 'dyed' the bow that shade of blue with a ProMarker so that it would match the blue on the rooster.  I wanted a CAS design and I think this one came out nicely.

     Challenges:
A Bit More Time to Craft
Animal Friends
Classic DT Open
Connie Can Crop
Crafts and Me
Crafty Awesomeness
Dies R Us
Not Just Cards
Petal Lu
Stempelsonnen

     I hope you're going to play along in our challenge this week.  Remember, while you're not required to use a QKR image on your card, if you DO use one (or even a Eureka image), you 'll be entered into a separate draw just for QKR images and that increases your chances of being a winner by a huge amount.  Good luck and come play.  NanaConnie

Wednesday, February 15, 2017

No More Snow!

     I'm in complete sympathy with those of you who have been buried under the latest winter storms and those who are still experiencing snowflakes falling from the sky.  That kind of weather is a big part of the reason I only spent two years in Alaska before heading to California.  But I do want you to know I was thinking about you and this card was made just for you,but most especially my friend, Donna H, buried in the snowdrifts somewhere in the wilds of Northeast USA.  :-D


I used the sketch found at From the Heart  (I{heart}Sketches),
turned 1/4 turn, and the Birdbrain image is also one of theirs.

I followed the colors and "Snow Day" theme, as well.

     Birdbrain is colored with ProMarkers and I used some silver metallic marker on the shovel.  I cut the image with a stitched die from Die-namics.  I'm beginning to think that my die cutting machine (manual) has to be my favorite crafting tool ever.  I hardly make a card or layout without using die cuts and often find ways to incorporate them into other projects.  By now, I must have well over 200 die sets!

     The two ice-gray strips were scraps of white CS to which I applied some micro-glitter for a really sparkly paper.  The sentiment is mine, printed with two different computer fonts.  For embellishment, I dug through my stash of winter goodies, found the snowflakes and added them.  I used two scrap pieces of jute cord to tie the bow.  Both of those things added some great texture to the card without being too heavy or thick to mail.

     Challenges:
A Snowflake's Promise
Crafting from the Heart
Crafty Cardmakers
Creates and Makes
Di's Digi Designs
Hiding in My Craft Room
Jo's Scrap Shack
Pammie's Inky Pinkies
Simon Says Stamp

     I'm sending really warm wishes to all of you surrounded by all that white stuff, and no, I'm not talking about being surrounded by white sand on the beaches in Hawaii.  But I'll bet that's where you'd all rather be.  :-D  Happy Stamping.  NanaConnie

So-oh-oh Old !

     My sweet SIL has a birthday this month and, for some reason, I get so tied up in Valentines and my granddaughter's February birthday that I forget about his.  But this year I figured out how to handle that and the humor should bring a sunny smile to his face.  :-D


     The cute dragon is "Clyde" from Bugaboo stamps and I colored him with my ProMarkers in Mardi Gras colors (gold, green & purple) to celebrate a February birthday.  I used one of my earliest Spellbinders dies to cut the image and both sentiment pieces.

     I used two shades of gold paper to make the background and added one little burlap bow.  Since it's a guy card, I left it without further embellishment.  It has great open space (even though it's not white space) and makes a wonderfully fun, CAS card.  It took less than 30 minutes to make and most of that was spend coloring the image.  :-D

     Challenges:
613 Avenue Create
A Bit More Time to Craft
A Perfect Time to Craft
Animal Friends
Aurora Wings
Bugaboo Crafty
Catch the Bug
Country View Crafts
Crafter's Cafe
Outlawz PAM
Stamping Sensations
Sweet Stampin'

     For those of you still buried under snow from the weekend storms in the middle and eastern US, bundle up and spend time crafting.  For those of you roasting down under, crank up the air conditioning and stay cool in the craft room.  I'm going to sit here and listen to raindrops on the patio cover while I make another card.  Happy Stamping.  NanaConnie

Monday, February 13, 2017

Nature's Rain

     Our new challenge starts today at Ike's World and our theme is "Anything Goes with an optional twist of  Nature."  That's pretty wide open and just to show you how wide, you should go over to the Ike's World blog and check out the variety of what all the other DT gals have done.

     I have been inspired by the weather nature has been giving us out here in California.  After a terrible 5 year drought, we've had a winter of rain, rain, and more rain.  Flooding in lots of areas, yes, but in the part of California where I live, during the last two weeks we've had very warm, spring-like rains -- the kind you want to walk through wearing shorts.   So, I chose Ike's Rain Girl image and here's the end result.


I started with the sketch from Creative Sketchy Girls.


     I colored the image with my ProMarkers and then, instead of cutting the image, I cut the frame with a stitched die from Die-Namics and trimmed it to fit the image.  I chose three different papers from the Madeline stack by Prima Papers.  I matted everything with navy blue CS including the hand cut sentiment.

     I added leaves, flowers, and a feather but there was still something missing. Where was the rain?  I grabbed one of my Spellbinders dies which has a decorative edge, cut two different papers and used some of the little pieces that drop out to make the raindrops.  Perfect!  Yes!  Now it was definitely finished.  :-D

     Challenges:
Crafting with Dragonflies
Creates and Makes
Creative Inspirations
Everybody Art
Jo's Scrap Shack
Word Art Weds.

     I hope you're going to come play in our challenge this week.  We get as much inspiration from you as you do from us.  :-D  Happy Stamping.  NanaConnie

Trolling for Hearts

     I have yet another Valentine to share and this one was so much fun since I used an image not intended for a Valentine.  Take a look; you'll see what I mean.  :-D   This little troll (or gnome, I suppose, but for the sentiment to work, I need him to be a troll!) is from Beccy's Place.


I used the sketch from the Outlawz.


     I started by coloring the image with my ProMarkers, deciding right away that I wanted to do mostly neutrals in the image itself but planning on lots of red in the card design.  I needed just the red on his huge hat and all the rest of the image could be blacks, grays, and browns.

     I cut the shape of the image using a curved die from Spellbinders.  I thought I had the die which also pierces holes the paper but I didn't so I did my own paper piercing to make the holes along the outer cuts.  The sentiment was printed at the same time as the image so all I had to do was make sure I included it when I did the cutting.

     The red hearts were cut with a die from Lawn Fawn, and the butterfly is a combo of one of those hearts and a cut with a Cheery Lynn die.  All of these pieces were cut from scrap bits on my desk.  I added little gems for the body and head.  The ribbon was in my stash and the bow is made from wrapped burlap.  Finally, I added the tiny rose bud to the bottom.  With all of that, it's still a pretty open and simple design.

     Challenges:
Addicted to Stamps
A Gem of a Challenge
Allsorts
Art Impressions
Aud Sentiments
Aussie Digital Artists Open
Butterfly Challenge
Come and Get It
Crafty Calendar
Glitter N Sparkle
Hiding in My Craft Room
If You Give a Crafter a Cookie
Julia Spiri
Outlawz Festive Friday
Pile It On
Quick Quotes
Sasayaki Glitter
Sweet Stampers

     I think I've pretty much finished posting all my Valentines now.  It was fun making them for others who wanted to share them with grandkids and friends.  We'll see if that trend continues.  Word has gotten out in my neighborhood that I make cards and more and more of my neighbors are asking me to make cards for them for special occasions they want to celebrate.  I don't mind at all.  :-D  Happy Stamping.  NanaConnie

Sunday, February 12, 2017

The Rose

     Last week I did a post about a rose given by a first love and how special that was, and today I'm using another image with a rose for a Valentine card done in black and white with just a tiny pop of red.  This image is by Ching-chou Kuik and I absolutely adore it!


I started with the sketch I found at Great Impressions,
although I added a strip across the middle
to better show off the lace.


     What little coloring there is was done with a tiny paint brush and water based ink, using it for water coloring.   Both the image and its dark mat are cut with dies from STAMPlorations (CUTplorations.)  I used papers from the Midnight Chic stack by DCWV, mixing four different ones on this one card.  I thought about adding a red heart but decided against it since I really wanted the rose to become the focus and a red heart diluted the impact.  I think most people can figure out this is a Valentine card even without a heart on it.  :-D

     The lace was in my stash and I'm getting low on it.  I'm going to be very sad when that spool runs out.  It's one of my favorite sparkly laces.  My finishing touch was the black bow with the pearl.

     Challenges:
Art Impressions
Ching-chou Kuik
Crafting by Designs
Crafty Hazelnut's Patterned Paper
Creative Inspirations
Creative Moments
Cupcake Inspirations
House that Stamps Built (top row)
Julia Spiri
Paper Shelter
Sisterhood of Crafters

     OK, I think that's it for today.  I have a shopping date with a crafter friend so you know we can get ourselves into real trouble at a vendor's show but we have promised ourselves no more than 2 hours, regardless.  We'll see if we can stick to it.  :-D  Happy Stamping.  NanaConnie

   

Saturday, February 11, 2017

Need a Bigger Cake?

     OK, here's my second post this month for From the Heart Stamps, this time using their sketch and both optional twists: colors and "Birthday," as well as a fun image.  Have you ever seen such a funny, pouty, spoiled cat?

     

Here's what I did with it.


     I used my ProMarkers to color the image, then cut it with a stitched, scalloped die from Memory Box.  The pink, striped dp is cut with a border die from Spellbinders, one side at a time.  

     The sentiment is also by From the Heart.  Since I've reached the age where I have to wish for larger cakes just to hold all the candles (not because I want to eat more of it, you understand!), I love that sentiment.  :-D

     I was thinking as I did the bow (the bow was white and I 'dyed' it charcoal gray to co-ordinate with the color of the cat and the darker gray in the color combo) that much as I love lace, I always reach for ribbon first.  I think it's because I have so much more ribbon in my stash or maybe because ribbon works on both feminine and masculine cards.

     I know you must be thinking that I missed the green in the combo but check out his eyes.  OK, it's not much but it's there!


     Happy Stamping.  NanaConnie

Friday, February 10, 2017

Helping Hands

     Fridays always mean a new challenge starts at QKR Stampede and I want to remind you that we are now an "Anything Goes" challenge but we have optional twists each week if you want to use them.  Our optional twist this week is "Embossing" and it can be either heat or dry.  I chose to use one of my favorite embossing folders from Stampin' Up and a die which both cuts and embosses from Spellbinders.

     The image and the sentiment are both from QKR Stampede (Digi 13007 "Helping Hand" and Digi 13313 "Up and Running.")


     I used my ProMarkers to color the image, then hand cut it to a size which would fit on top of the die cut/embossed doily (Spellbinders.)  I used the SU embossing folder on some turquoise CS which I then used for the background.

     The plaid dp was a snippet I found on my desk and I wrapped it with a leftover strip of ribbon.  I added the sentiment and three of the little bows I make.  Two of them I left in the original white and the third I 'dyed' with a light blue ProMarker.  I love working with nothing but white ribbon for making those bows.  I sew them together by the dozens, toss them into my stash, and then color them with markers to match colors I've used in my design.

     Challenges:
Creative Inspirations
Inspiration Destination
Lil Patch of Crafty Friends
Mod Squad
Penny's Paper Crafty
Pixie's Snippets Playground
Scrapy Land
Send a Smile 4 Kids
Simon Says Stamp
Word Art Weds.

     I hope we're going to see you playing along in our challenge.  Remember, it isn't necessary to use images from QKR but if you do, your card gets entered into a separate draw only for QKR users and that greatly increases your chance to win.  Come play, won't you?  Happy Stamping.  NanaConnie

Thursday, February 9, 2017

It's a Purple Spring

     This seems like a good day to think about spring and Morgan's Artworld has a new challenge starting today.  Our theme is "Add Flowers" and that certainly fits right in with spring.  One of the ways I know spring is arriving is the advent of my irises peeking out of the long green leaves on their plants and the blossoms bursting forth on the almond and apricot trees.

     I chose this image (Fae 37) because of all the spring flowers in it and it just seemed to shout "Spring!"  :-D


     The image is colored with chalks, applied with a cotton swab.  The shading is done with polychromos pencils.  I matted the image and decided that it called for a round card so used one of my QuicKutz dies to cut the card shape, then added the image piece.

     I dug through my stash, found the purple layer of flower petals, then pulled out a bit of sheer green lace to make the second layer of petals.  That was done by hand sewing a loose running stitch along one edge of the lace and then pulling on the thread until the petal shape was achieved.  I sewed the two layers together, adding a clear bead to the center to hide the running stitch.

     The sentiment is printed, hand cut, and matted with the same CS as the image mat.

     Challenges:
Classic DT Open
Colour Crazy Craft
Crafty Creations
Double D
Lemon Shortbread
Lil Patch of Crafty Friends
Outlawz PAM
Pammie's Inky Pinkies
Petal Lu
Stempelsonnen

      Morgan's also has two new releases this month and here's a quick look at them.

 Image may contain: drawing Oberon & Titania  Image may contain: drawing Fae 6

     That's it for me today.  I do hope you're going to dig out some flowers and come play with us this fortnight.  This is my last post as a DT member for Morgan's but I'm looking forward to being inspired by what you submit.  Happy Stamping.  NanaConnie

Gathering Hearts

     Last year I bought these two images from A Day for Daisies and just never had a chance to use them.  Since I made so many more Valentine cards this year, I decided to combine the two of them onto one card and I love how it looks like that darling little heart fairy is gathering up hearts from a bush growing them.


     I first printed the 'bush' onto dp, then colored the hearts with my ProMarkers.  I added tiny dots of glitter to the sparkle points in the image.  I also colored the fairy with ProMarkers, and fussy cut it.  I mounted the fairy on Pop Dots and adhered it to the other image.  All of that went onto a card front.

     I used sparkly twine and a red bow with a pearl to embellish the card.

     Challenges:
Crafty Gals Corner
Creative Moments
Digi Choosday
Everybody Art
Lemon Shortbread
Passion for ProMarkers
Through the Craft Room Door
Tuesday Throwdown
Unicorn

     I'll have another post late tonight for Morgan's ArtWorld and, in the wee hours of the morning, one for QKR Stampede.  Hope you'll stop by and take a look.  Happy Stamping.  NanaConnie

Wednesday, February 8, 2017

The Book of Love Stories

     Scrapper's Delights offered a cute little book image as their challenge freebie for the February Facebook challenge and I decided to add a couple of cute little feline lovers from Fabrika Fantasy to celebrate this month of love stories.


     I was on a very short deadline to finish this card so I used the pre-colored image, fussy cut it and added it on top of the book image.  The sentiment is computer printed, cut, then added below the book.  The red dp is from my scrap stash and the navy blue stripes are from SU.  I tied the polka dot bow and added the sparkly, glittered heart for a bit of embellishment.  The entire card took about 20 minutes to make.

     Challenges:
Cards in Envy
Craft-Dee BowZ
Crafting from the Heart
Get Creative
Incy Wincy
Outlawz Greetings
Paper Girls
Simon Says Stamp

     Happy Stamping.  NanaConnie

Tuesday, February 7, 2017

Stealing Hearts

     How could these sweet kittens NOT steal your heart?   The image is from Sasayaki Glitter and is the image this month from the Progressive Challenge over on Facebook.   I think it's called "Valentine Cats."


I started with the sketch from The Outlawz.


     I used my ProMarkers to color the image, added two, little, die cut, red hearts to their collars, then cut it with a die from Spellbinders.  The die also pierces holes and embosses the paper.  I added more embossing with a "Hearts" folder from Darice and I used that for the mat behind the image.

     I dug through my stash of 12 x 12 scrapbooking papers, cut four squares (that paper is red, not burnt orange!) and added them to deep red CS, then layered the image piece on top of that.  I decided on two of my hand sewn bows (the ones with pearls) for embellishment and called it finished.  

     Challenges:
Aussie Digital Artists 
CCC Digi
Ching-chou Kuik
Crafty Awesomeness
Crafty Hazelnut's Patterned Paper
Creatalicious
Cute as a Button
Die Cut Divas
Dies R Us
Not Just Cards
Paper Creator's Crafts
Pearly Sparkles
Sasayaki Glitter
World Wide Open DT

     I'm doing more Valentine's this year than usual because I've had some requests from friends who want to share cards with their grandkids or friends.  I hope your week is going well and wish you lots of Happy Stamping.    NanaConnie

Monday, February 6, 2017

Salute to Friendships

     The newest monthly Outlawz Progressive Freebie challenge started a few days ago and I'm getting my card in early this month!  The freebie image came from Bugaboo Stamps and I love their images which focus on the sentiment.  They are always so lovely.


     This time all my coloring is done with chalks, applied with a cotton swab.  I used two shades of blue for the sky, one shade of each of the other colors (pink, green, and yellow.)  After the coloring, I cut it with a die from Spellbinders and backed that with burnt umber dp - a left over scrap just the right size.

     I mounted that onto ombre CS and used that as the card front.  I added some sparkly, metallic twine and left it very CAS.

     Challenges:
613 Avenue Create
Butterfly Challenge
Catch the Bug
Chalk n Stock
Crafty Addicts
Crafty Gals Corner
Creative Moments
Inky Chicks
Lemon Shortbread
Time Out

     Happy Stamping.  NanaConnie

Sunday, February 5, 2017

Best Friends

     This card combines two of the cutest images I've ever seen and they are from Angie's Digital Stamps.  I chose to print them separately so that I could fussy cut the mouse and add it to the card with dimensional dots.


     Both images are colored with my ProMarkers, then cut, matted and layered together.  I added them to the front of a pre-made card front and dug through my box of die cut 'negatives' (leftovers from other cuts I've done.)  I found these corner cuts (Bird Scrolls from Spellbinders) which aren't exactly the negatives, but I had used the dies to cut decorative corner spaces on another card, letting the inside show through so I saved these pieces for future use.  The yellow was perfect for this card's color combo.

     I tied the bow from polka dot ribbon and added it for another bit of whimsy.  I do like the end result of this one.  :-D

     Challenges:
A Bit More Time to Craft
A Perfect Time to Craft
Animal Friends
Aussie Digital Artists
Crafting When We Can
Crafts and Me
Lil Patch of Crafty Friends
Ribbon Girl
Stamping Sensations

     Wow, you got 2 posts yesterday and 2 posts today and I'm exhausted!  I think I'll veg out the rest of the day and watch all the Super Bowl hoopla.  I don't really care who wins this year since my team lost out during the playoffs but I hope there are some great commercials this year.  :-D  Happy Stamping.  NanaConnie

Chocolate Kisses with Pigwit

     I'm just so excited that From the Heart is back with their Progressive Challenges again but mostly I'm excited that Faith is so much better.  Blessings, Faith!  The freebie image for the challenge is Pigwit Hogs and Kisses and he's adorable!  Of course, this being February I had to make a Valentine card.


     I decided that something CAS would best showcase Pigwit so I started by using ProMarkers to color him, then I cut him with a simple, square die from Spellbinders (my very first set of dies purchased probably about 6 years ago.  Boy, have I added to my collection of dies since then!)

     I added tissue paper behind him, and tore the edges.  I mounted all of that onto a red card base, leaving room at the top for the sentiment piece.  For embellishment, I added only the red bow.

    Challenges:
Crafting by Designs
Crafty Calendar
Crafty Catz
Crafty Creations
Hiding in My Craft Room
I {heart} ProMarkers
Inky Chicks
Inspiration Destination
Jo's Scrap Shack
Kraftin' Kimmie
Pattie's Creations
Scrapy Land
Simon Says Stamp
Sweet Stampin'

     How has your weekend gone so far?   Mine has been very productive and creative.  I've managed to make 7 cards since Friday afternoon, and I have images colored for 3 more.  How's that for a stamping frenzy?  :-D  Happy Stamping.  NanaConnie

Saturday, February 4, 2017

A Puppy's Heart

     This was a Friday Freebie at Bugaboo Stamps yesterday (still available until next Thursday, I think) and I'm using it as another Thank You card for Sending Paw Prints.  That's the group which collects handmade thank you cards with pet images which they donate to animal shelters and rescue groups so that they can be sent to volunteers, donors, and pet adopters.   I think it's a great cause and I plan to participate a lot.


     I colored the image with my ProMarkers and cut it with a Sue Wilson die.  I added the blue frame which is also cut with a die from that same Sue Wilson set.  Although it's hard to see, both of the blue papers are patterned dp from my scrap pile.  I added the one bow as the only embellishment.  It didn't need much since it's intended to be a masculine card.

     I had to make a second one of these.  I was told this would be a great Valentine card for the nephew of a friend of mine so now I've made another just like it.  I think I photographed the one without a sentiment so you'll have to imagine this one with a small, stamped "Thank You" in the upper, left corner.  :-D

     Challenges:
Catch the Bug
Crafty Cardmakers
Crafty Catz
Creative Fingers
Dragon's Lair Designs
Incy Wincy
Just Us Girls
 
Simon Says Stamp
Take It, Make It

     Happy Stamping.  NanaConnie

First Rose

     Do any of you remember the first rose you were ever given by a sweetheart?  All the rest are beautiful and wonderful to receive but there's something extra special about your First Love's Rose.  :-D  This card celebrates memories of that first rose.


     The image is by The East Wind and I colored her with my ProMarkers then added a frame which was left over from a die cut I did for another card.  The die is from Spellbinders.  The green ribbon was in my stash and I tied the bow by hand.

     Challenges:
Colour Crazy Craft
Crafting from the Heart
Crazy Challenge
Die Cuttin' Divas
Digi Choosday
Di's Digi Designs
In the Pink
Outlawz Greetings
Paper Girls
Tuesday Throwdown

     I'll have a second post later today so be sure to stop by again.  Meantime, have a wonderful start to your weekend and Happy Stamping.  NanaConnie

Friday, February 3, 2017

A QKR Valentine

     It's Friday again so that means a new challenge starting at QKR Stampede.  Don't forget that we've changed over to "Anything Goes with a Twist" and the twist is always optional.  Our twist this week is "Valentine."   I chose to use Digi 10304 Chocolate Kisses as my image and Digi 10302 Kiss Me Quick as my sentiment.


I used colors from the inspiration photo


     I used my ProMarkers to color the image and then cut it with a die from Spellbinders.  The sentiment is printed, hand cut, inked on the edges and mounted onto the image.  I saved three of the little hearts that fell out of the die cut so that I could use them for corner embellishments.

     I dug out a piece of burlap, trimmed it, and pulled out some of the fibers along the edges.  I mounted that onto a red card base, then applied the image on top.  Finally, I tied the fibers I had pulled out of the burlap swatch into a knot and used them as a 'bow.'  Fast, clean and simple, and perfect for a masculine Valentine.

     Challenges:
Aud Sentiments
CAS on Sunday
Come and Get It
Crafting with an Attitude
Cute Card Thurs.
Di's Digi Designs
Lil Patch of Crafty Friends
Outlawz Twisted Thurs.
Time Out

     Come play with us this week, won't you?  Although you can do only the "Anything Goes" part of the challenge theme, if you want to get another Valentine finished, (it's only 10 days now until you'll need them!) feel free to use the optional twist, too.  Happy Stamping.  NanaConnie

Wednesday, February 1, 2017

Point of View on Birthday Presents

     OK, it's the middle of the week and the first day of a new month and I couldn't think of any better reason to celebrate a bit of silliness.   At Crafts Galore Encore, we start another monthly challenge today and, as usual, our theme is "Anything Goes."  We're sponsored by Kenny K this month and I'd love to see you playing along.  Here's what I did with two of Kenny K's delightful creatures, playing with the idea of birthday presents and what each one might see as suitable or desirable.  :-D

   
     I colored each of them with my ProMarkers, fussy cut the little mouse, and layered them all together onto a blue CS mat, adding the mouse and sentiment last.  The bit of cheese I drew, colored, fussy cut, and put in front of the mouse.

     I chose papers from Graphic 45 and added one of my hand sewn bows as the only embellishment, keeping it CAS.  Now I have another masculine birthday card in my stash.  :-D

     Challenges:
Addicted to CAS
Allsorts
ArtbyMiRan
Aud Sentiments
Creative Corner
Creative Inspirations
I {heart} ProMarkers
Inspiration Destination
Jo's Scrap Shack
Pammie's Inky Pinkie

     Groundhog Day is tomorrow and then we'll know if we're going to have an early spring or another six weeks of winter.  Which one do you hope to have?   Whichever one, come play with us in our Anything Goes challenge at Crafts Galore Encore.  Happy Stamping.  NanaConnie