Thursday, May 26, 2011

Explosion Book for Graduation

 Hello! We are just back from a trip to witness our daughter receive her Master's degree. Of course, we are very proud of her. To commemorate the occasion, I made an explosion book for her, but I didn't want to post the photos until she got to see was supposed to be a surprise! It is done in black and white, with some gold and silver, and just a bit of the school's colors, maroon (and white). It is a combination of printed and solid papers, purchased and hand made embellishments, stamps and stamps and stamps. I wasn't sure what I was after, and I'm not sure about what I ended up with, but it sure was fun! Here it is:

  This is the front cover. When closed, it lies fairly flat, tied with a silver ribbon. The rosette is purchased, then addd to, using the Tim Holtz rosette die.

 The first page features a purchased mortarboard and tassel embellishment, and a miniature diploma in a presentation folder, with lots of stamps and an Ide-ology token.

This page reflects our daughter's love of learning and books, and her sense of humor, with a quote by Groucho Marx, and a variety of dog-related images and  words...we've had Golden Retrievers since before we were married!

 The third page features quotes by Einstein, Carl Sandberg, and Oprah, with lots of other words and images.

This last page is a combination of inspirational thoughts and wishes for her future.

 This is how the book looks when tied open on a flat surface.

She was happy with it, and so was I.

Thursday, May 12, 2011

Layered Backgrounds Class

Here's another class to go June 4th from 10:30 to 12:30 at Stampin' EJ's at Debra's Cottage in
Costa Mesa. We'll be experiementing with Layered backgrounds, using large stamps from a variety of manufacturers, such as Hero Arts, Impression Obsession and Wendy Vecchi's Studio 490 from Stampers Anonymous. Each participant will go home with 3-4 finished cards, and 9-12 additional backgrounds.We'll be using a variety of papers and inks to create different styles-- subtle, vintage, sharp...there are so many possibilities with layered stamps, and so many ways of combining! For this class, the focus will be the backgrounds...a subtle background with just the right flavor will provide the perfect platform for your graphic or sentiment.   Here are some examples of cards with layered backgrounds:

This one is done with Studio 490 stanps and a combination of chalk inks in the backgrounds and pigment inks in the foreground, embossed with clear embossing powder.

This  is done using Hero Arts doily stamps for rthe background with pigment inks on glossy paper, and finished off with Tim Holtz' tattered florals die cuts on various shades of standard cardstock,with an Ideology flower center, and some pearl baubbles in the lower right corner. 

I love this one...elegant, understated. This is Impression Obsession backgrounds, with Vivid! dye inks, the flourish is embossed pigment ink, as is the butterfly on pattered paper. I made 3 of them, then adhered them for a 3D effect. Words are also I/O.

This last one is Hero Arts background stamps on glossy paper with chalk inks, then buffed for a clearer, brighter color. The first flower is masked to place the second one. there is a corner punch on the lower right, and a button in the center of the flower.

For class there will be lots of background stamps available, and lots of different inks to try with various combinations. This is definitely a class based on experiementation, and everyone's finished cards will be different. I'll have a variety of embellishments to choose from, too. Hope to see you there! See the Stampin EJ  link on the left for more info  or to register for class.

Saturday, April 30, 2011

Layered Backgrounds

I have been busy! I've been playing with some of those large background stamps from Impression Obsession. I've been layering complimentary backgrounds for a long time, but these are just made to go together! If you are into a vintage or grunge-y look, this is the jackpot. In general, I think stamps that large are just difficult to manage. The mega-mount is a really helpful tool to manage those large stamps, help distribute pressure evenly for a better impression, and is just easier on the hands and wrists, even with small stamps. Anyway, here are some  pix!

This one, The Roses, uses  the distressed cordoroy background , first stamped in Clearsnap Vivid! Cobblestone ink onstandard cardstock, then again, turned 90 degrees, and stamped in Clearsnap Vivid! Straw ink.The roses and sentiment are also by Impression Obsession. The roses were stamped in ColorBox silver pigment ink, embossed with Top Boss Silver Embossing powder, and painted using the same Vivid! inks (straw, yellow, vintage green, olive). The sentiment was stamped in ColorBox black pigment ink, and embossed with clear embossing powder.

This one uses The Harlequin background, stamped in Vivid! Inky Blue on glossy paper, then overstamped with the Distressed Cordoroy backgroond in Olive, then Cobblestone Vivid! inks. The sentiment is also I/O, stamped in Inky Blue Vivid! ink, and the flowers are white, by Petaloo,dyed with matching inks, misted with water and dried. A vintage button is the center of the flower.

This one features the Ornate Floral background stamp,  with Garnet Vivid! ink on glossy paper, overstamped with the Distressed Cordoroy in Straw Vivid! ink.  The sentiment is I/O, stamped in Black ColorBox pigment ink and embossed with clear embossing powder. Various black brads, as well as dimensional mounting tape are used.

This one is the Wallpaper background stamp stamped in Vivid! Olive ink on standard cardstock, and overstamped in Vivid! Straw using the Distressed Cordoroy background.  The sentiment is I/O and is stamnped in ColorBox Moss Green pigment ink, embossed with clear embossing powder. It reminds me of old Hawaiian plantation decore!

This would be a nice, easy class with lots of options for backgrounds to play with. Any larger background stamp will work. Currently Hero Arts has a bunch of those available, some with coordinating foreground stamps, as well...lots of things to try!

Friday, April 29, 2011

Alyse's Birthday Star Book

  I have a friend who will soon reach the revered age of 95 years. We met in a class at our local synagogue about 17 years ago. We became fast friends, providing a friendlier perspective of the other's generation. Alyse's presence in my life has made a profound difference in how I view the caregiver role I fill for my own mother. Anyway, one of Alyse's adult granddaughters arranged for 95 individuals or families that are important to Alyse, and to whom Alyse is important, to send a card or letter or photos or whatever, on an assigned day, for the 95 days prior to Alyse's actual birthday. Alyse was astounded that all these "love letters" were arriving, out of the blue! She figured it out on the third day! My assigned day was April 25th, about 3 weeks before the actual date of her birth, in 1916. I wanted to do a project that Alyse could spend time enjoying...something with a bit of Wow to it...I wanted her to LOVE it. I did a star book with the theme of friendship in 5 pages, and the 6th page was a birthday page. She loves it and I am happy to have done it. She keeps it on display in the front entrance of the house.

Here are some photos:

I realized today that I have never really shared my art work with Alyse...she received holiday cards, thank you cards and birthday cards , but I never brought her any of my class designs or book projects or any of the other things I've made to share with her. So today I packed up a shopping bag of samples and we had a lovely hour or so while the cookies were baking, looking at a bunch of my stuff. She concluded that although all the things I brought to show her really were "gorgeous", the book I made for her was certainly more beautiful than all the rest. She was happy, and so was I.

Monday, March 28, 2011

New Class-- Blended ink Backgrounds

Here's another class in the works -- blended ink backgrounds with the new Stampendous Jumbo Floral stamps. I told you I was having a great time experimenting with those new stamps, and here is one of the things that came out of that creative playing. This class will be at Stampin' EJ's in Debra's Cottage on Saturday, April 30, 2011 from 10:30 to 12:30. The cost is $25 for 3 cards, and the fourth, if you have time, for $5 more. These cards take lots of ink and technique, but it is well worth the effort...take a look!


Sunday, March 27, 2011

Jumbo Florals by Stampendous

I’ve recently received a number of the new Jumbo Floral stamps sets by Stampendous, and I’ve had a great time experimenting with background treatments for these flowers. These stamps are really big—5 inches across or more. It takes next to nothing to cover your creative space, beautifully! The following 4 cards are a t Stampin’ EJ’s at Debra’s Cottage. The backgrounds for this group are all done using a variety of Smooch Spritz by Clearsnap.  Several colors are used on each, or are sprayed over other colors with dry time in between. The photos don’t show it, but the depth and shimmer are just gorgeous!

Here they are individually:

This is from the Jumbo Dahlia set, with sentiment from Hero Arts Just Find Me set. The background is a mixture of Emerald Sprinkles, Limolicious, and Gingersnap Spritz, oversprayed with Gold Glow, stamped in Colorbox black pigment ink and embossed with Top Boss black embossing powder.

This one is from the Jumbo Thinking of You set, with the flourish from the Dahlia set. I used Electric Blue, Splash and Sea Kiss Spritz with just a little Gold Glow spritzed over the greener parts. It is also stamped in ColorBox Black pigment ionk and embossed with Judikins Black Opal embossing powder.

This one is from the Jumbo Peony set..isn't it gorgeous! I used Cosmic Pink, Cherry Ice and mellowed them out with Gold Glow.The words are from the Hero Arts Essential Messages set. It is stamped in ColorBox white frost pigment ink and embossed with Judikins' White Diamond embossing powder.

This flourish is from the jumbo Happy Birthday set, words from the Hero Arts Essential Messages set. the background is Wineberry, Spun Sugar and (of course) Gold Glow. It is stamped in ColorBox Eggplant pigment inkand embossed with Top Boss Wine embossing powder.


My next class at Stampin’ EJ’s is Sunday, April 3, 2011 from 12 to 3 pm. I’ll be teaching with my best friend and stamping buddy, Kathy, and we will be doing the first of a series of Beginning Stamping classes called Paper-Stamps- Ink. This is a 3 hour class and costs $30. This is an information-driven class and introduces different kinds of papers, stamps and inks. It gives the participant an opportunity to handle different materials and make samples to take home in a notebook using 17 different inks, matte, glossy and matte-coated papers with solid, outline and detail stamps. A quick final project uses several techniques to demonstrate several materials to best advantage.  The purpose of this class is to provide enough information and experience so that a new stamping enthusiast can choose materials and techniques to achieve the desired effect in the chosen project. The idea is to enhance your creativity!

Here is a quick pix of the materials featured in class. For more info on registration or Stampin EJ at Debra's Cottage, see  and click on the web store on the left.

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Well, here we very first post, on my very own blog! Who'd have thought? Surely not I!
I've recently become a member of the Design Team for Stampin' EJ, a stamp shop inside Debra’s Cottage in Costa Mesa, CA. I’m very excited about that! The purpose of this blog is to share with you my stamping designs and projects, classes, thoughts and reflections. My expectation is to post a couple of times a month, with photos of my designs or samples for classes, or just whatever I'm working on...I do have some ongoing projects that may be a bit off the beaten track.
 The next upcoming class I have is Take-Out 12 in 2 Hours, on Saturday, April 2, 2011 at Stampin EJ in Debra's Cottage in Costa Mesa, CA, from 10:30  am to 12:30 pm. We will create 12 cards in about 2 hours by using a batch work method and coordinated papers, inks and stamps. Because everything is coordinated, anything you do works! It's quick, uncomplicated, and terrific for making a bunch of cards at a time for easy correspondence. Here are some samples, and other samples are also in EJ's booth at Debra's Cottage...hope to see you there!below.