CAS(E) this Sketch #240 - happy halloween

Halloween is one of my favorite craft holidays because there're so many spooky-cute stamps and dies out there. I love sweetness with a little bit of "punch", such as these spooky-cute characters, and bitter-sweet food (chocolate covered orange peel, crystal ginger, etc.)

My design is based on Chrissy's sketch for this week's CAS(E) this Sketch (#240).

The sentiment was heat-embossed in white so that it'll pop.


Thanks for your visit!

Stamp: Teeny Tiny Wishes (Stampin' Up!)
Paper: Basic Black,
Whisper White, Pumpkin Pie, Elegant Eggplant, Summer Starfruit, DSP Neutrals (Stampin' Up!)
VersaMark (Tsukineko)
Accessories: Die-namics Stitched Mini Scallop Rectangles STAX (My Favorite Things), Pumpkin Boarder Die (Impression Obsession), Trick or Treaters Dies (Memory Box), Embossing Powder (White - Hero Arts), Foam Tape (3M)


CAS Watercolour & CAS Mix Up Challenges - happy anniversary

I made these sheets of watercolour paint wash a few weeks ago.

I used the red ochre sheet last week, and made a card. So today, I chose the tree peony one for this.

I die cut the white card base, and placed the watercoloured wash sheet behind the base. I thought this would make a great silhouette.

I wanted to make this card look a little festive because it's an anniversary card, so I used gold glitter embossing powder for the sentiment and the thin frame. Because the glitter powder granules are larger than regular embossing powder's, the sentiment was difficult to read... A lesson learned - I'll use a sentiment in a simpler or larger font with glitter embossing powder in the future.

I'm sharing the card in these challenges. Click the banners below, and you'll see the galleries full of beautiful cards:
CAS Mix Up September Challenge            CAS Watercolour September Challenge

Thanks for visiting!

Stamp: Express Yourself (Stampin' Up!)
Paper: Canson Watercolor Paper (140 lb), Whisper White (Stampin' Up!)
Gansai Tambi (Kuretake), VersaMark (Tsukineko)
Accessories: Die-namics Centerpieces Framed Lovebirds (My Favorite Things), Metallic Gold Sparkle Embossing Glitter (Wow!), Foam Tape (3M)


CAS(E) this Sketch #239 - happy birthday

My friend's birthday is coming up, so I made this card for her this weekend.

I got design inspiration from Donna's sketch for CAS(E) this Sketch (#239).

I love the floral die set and the happy birthday sentiment die I recently got. They're versatile, and I can think of many ways to use them.

I basically die-cut a bunch of cardstock and layered the pieces. Then I spattered gold perfect pearl on the vellum. 

I'm linking up my card to Simon Says Stamp Wednesday Challenge (clean & simple) too.
Thanks for looking!

Paper: Crumb Cake, Chocolate Chip, Calypso Coral, Peekaboo Peach, Vellum
 (Stampin' Up!)
AccessoriesFantasy Floral Die Set (Altenew), Handlettered Happy Birthday Wafer Dies (Simon Says Stamp), Die-namics Mod Rectangle STAX (My Favorite Things) Perfect Pearl (Gold - Ranger)


Interactive Birthday Card

I haven't made an interactive card since my little friends went back to Japan in June. (Kids love interactive cards, don't they?) So I made this card thinking about them today.

This is a combination of a shaker card and a slider/spinning card. I thought it would be a doubly fun birthday card.

The birthday sentiment background and the edges of the card base were heat-embossed in clear, so the color of the Grapesicle cardstock turned darker and shinier.

The shaker birthday wheel was die-cut with Birthday Centerpieces and Stitched Circle STAX. I placed the stitched circle die outside the BD Centerpieces, and die-cut the cardstock at one shot. This way, the die-cut circle looks cleaner than dividing the die-cutting process.


I put a round piece of vellum behind the wheel so that the sentiment is easier to read. I also adhered a piece of acetate behind the wheel and made a shaker component.

I'm entering the card in My Favorite Things' Card Design Superstar Contest (Innovation Master Category).

Thanks for stopping by!

Stamp: BG Happy Birthday Background (My Favorite Things)
Smooth White, Grapesicle, Razzle Berry, Translucent Vellum (My Favorite Things)
VersaMark (Tsukineko)
Accessories: Die-namics Birthday Centerpieces, Stitched Circle STAX, Stitched Mini Scallop Rectangle STAX, Balloon Shaker Window & Frame, Surf & Turf  (My Favorite Things), Spin & Slide Discs  (My Favorite Things), Super Fine Clear Embossing Powder (Ranger), Sequins & Silver Shimmer Seed Beads (Pretty Pink Posh), Acetate Sheet (Hot Off the Press), Foam Tape (3M)


CAS Mix Up Challenge - thanks

I'm playing along with the CAS Mix Up September Challenge today. Thank you, Bonnie, for hosting the challenge this month!

After watching the tutorial videos provided on the challenge site, I tried watercolour wash with red orchre, and made this card.

I heat-embossed the leaf image and the sentiment (thanks) on the front panel, and stamped the rest of the sentiment on the card base. I masked the leaves and the sentiment, and spattered a little of gold perfect pearl. The front panel was framed with dark brown cardstock, and raised with foam tape.

I really liked this fall color combination - red ochre, dark brown, and ivory (it looks pretty white in the pictures though).

Thanks for looking!

Stamp: Lovely as a Tree, Endless Thanks (Stampin' Up!)
Paper: Canson Watercolor Paper (140 lb), Naturals White, Early Espresso (Stampin' Up!)
Gansai Tambi (Kuretake), Early Espresso (Stampin' Up!), VersaMark (Tsukineko)
Accessories: Die-namics Stitched Rectangle STAX (Favorite Things), Embossing Powder (Early Espresso - Stampin' Up!), Perfect Pearl (Gold - Ranger), Foam Tape (3M)


CAS(E) this Sketch #238 - i'm here for you

A friend of mine has been having a tough time, so I made this card to encourage her.

I got the design inspiration from Leigh's pretty sketch for this week's CAS(E) this Sketch!

I made a DIY stencil using the color drop dies and a piece of acetate sheet. Then I applied glimmer paste over the stencil. I really liked the shimmery and subtle effect. The cloud's shapes and colors are peeking through the drops.
The clouds were stenciled with Distress Oxide Ink. I also used Distress Oxide Inks for coloring the die-cut heart and stamping the sentiment to match the ink tones.

I die-cut the front panel with a Wonky Stitched Rectangle STAX die to soften the look of the straight edges, and raised the panel with foam tape.

I'm entering my card in My Favorite Things' Card Design Superstar Contest too.

Thanks for visiting!

Stamp: Essential Sentiments (My Favorite Things)
Smooth White (My Favorite Things)
Distress Oxide Ink (Broken China, Abandoned Coral, Walnut Stain - Ranger)
Accessories: Die-namics Color Drops STAX, Wonky Stitched Rectangle STAX, Mini Mail (My Favorite Things), Mini Cloud Edges Stencil (My Favorite Things), Nuvo Glimmer Paste (Moon Stone - Tonic Studio), Acetate Sheet (Hot Off the Press)


CAS Watercolour Card Challenge - happy birthday

I've been looking forward to the CAS Watercolour September Challenge since the August entry link-up closed!
This month's challenge is Silhouette. What fun!

I love Altenew's vintage roses stamp set, and I used it for making silhouettes for my card.

I thought it would be interesting to use a "not-very-pretty" color embossing powder for the pretty roses, so I chose pewter. It turned out that the roses got a "vintage" look as the stamp set name says.

Here's a tip to arrange small elements (roses & leaves) and keep the arrangement from falling apart:
- Stamp the roses and the leaves on card stock and die cut them.
- Adjust the positions of the die-cuts as you like.
- Once you're happy with the arrangement, put a piece of Press 'n Seal over the die-cuts and press them so that they stick to the Press 'n Seal. They won't easily move around any more. I learned this technique from Jennifer McGuire's blog.

- You place the stamps on the die-cut images, and you can get the stamped/heat-embossed images exactly the way you want. (Misti is useful for this kind of work.)

It required a few rounds of masking and heat-embossing to make the silhouettes, but it was totally worth it!

Actually, I made another card (pic below), but I overworked the watercolor background, and the surface of the watercolor paper got a little frayed. So I chose the carmine red one to link up to the challenge site.


Thanks for dropping by! 

Stamp: Vintage Roses (Altenew), Create a Cupcake (Stampin' Up!)
Paper: Canson Watercolor Paper (140 lb), Whisper White (Stampin' Up!)
Gansai Tambi (Kuretake), VersaMark (Tsukineko)
Accessories: Embossing Powder (Pewter - Stampin' Up!), Die-namics Wonky Stitched Rectangle STAX (My Favorite Things)



CAS(E) this Sketch #237 - happy halloween

It's a little bit early, but I made a Halloween card this weekend. 

My design was inspired by Chrissy's sketch for this week's CAS(E) this Sketch.

Let me share my story about how I came up with the spider web idea.

I was thinking about what image I want to use for the fun "fan" shape for the past few days - when I was taking a shower, driving to work, waiting in the  checkout line at the grocery store... 
My first instinct was to place layered modern graphic shapes. Then I started thinking about some more nature-theme images. Nothing really hit me. I'm sure you all understand my feelings. I had "this-works-fine" moments, but didn't have a "Yeah, this is it!" light-bulb moment.

I went to a beauty salon on Saturday afternoon (still thinking about the sketch image while driving to the salon), and told my beautician about the challenge I was having. Hairstyling is a kind of art, and his wife is a professional graphic designer, so we often talk about art-related stuff.
Then he shared a piece of advice his wife often gives him. She says "The design software (Illustrator, Photoshop, etc.) is only a supporting tool after all. You should first draw a draft design with your own hand freely, and explore ideas."
So after I came back home, I started doodling with a pencil. It's true, I'd been  thinking about the design a lot, but just IN my head, not actually drawing something on paper.
This is one of the designs I doodled on scratch paper:

I looked for a spider web stamp, but the one I have was a little too small for the layout, so I decided to draw it myself.
I didn't find good Halloween sentiment stamps in my stash to match the cute little spider, so I created one using MS Word (font: Octavia Script). 
I test-printed the sentiment to make sure the position was right. I also stamped the spider to see how low it should dangle.

I drew the web with a black pen, and framed the front panel with the Halloween design paper.
I thought about adding a few Halloween color sequins or grey spatters to the card, but I decided not to. I wanted to keep the doodle-on-paper feeling. I'm pretty happy with how it turned out.

Thanks for reading the lengthy post today! Do you have your own way of dealing with situations where you can't think of any good ideas?

Stamp: Googly Ghouls (Stampin' Up!)
Whisper White, Basic Black, Pumpkin Pie, Witches' Brew DSP (Stampin' Up!)
Ink: Memento Tuxedo Black (Tsukineko)