Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Doing What It Takes

Here's another series of cards on getting the positioning right.

Centering this asymmetrical design doesn't look right to my eyes.
It's not terrible, but it isn't great either.

So I went to the sweet spot in the bottom right, but put the sentiment
too close to the right edge, and when I added the bling, that side
looked way too crowded.

So I tried one more time. I STILL didn't get it right...the sentiment was too
high this time, so I trimmed a bit off the bottom of the card.
No one will ever know. Unless they read this blog.

If it takes three tries to get it right, I'll take three tries. These sorts of cards...with a fun sentiment and a little bling...make me happy and are worth the effort.


stamps: Papertrey
ink: Hero Arts soft lilac, Memento black
paper: Papertrey
accessories: rhinestones, Bic/Sharpie markers

Monday, September 15, 2014


Whew. What a weekend and what a Monday. By the end of Monday, my basement smelled so much better thanks to the professional cleaning services of experts in the field of fighting sewage.


My water system is completely functional and back to its proper "closed system" state.


I'm contemplating putting a tip jar on this here blog to cover the cost of plumbers and cleaning people with great big fans.

Just kidding.

Sort of.

And thank you to those who sent me emails on perspective to cheer me up. Y'all are so sweet! I bet you even smell good, too.

Anyway, today's card signals a FRESH start to my life, one free of funky smells and sick dogs.

I just love it when stamp designers know what size of epoxy stickers I have and make stamps to fit them. So very thoughtful.

Hello and thank you!

stamps: Papertrey Filled with Joy, Paper Tray
ink: Hero Arts
paper: Papertrey white
accessories: epoxy sticker, corner rounder

Sunday, September 14, 2014

If It's Not One Thing, It's Ten

You know those days when ten things go wrong, and every time you turn around, the universe ups the ante on disaster?

Yeah. That.

Oy vey.

First, the dog gets "garbage gut"...a medical adventure about which I'll spare you the bloody details and which resulted in a hefty emergency vet bill. Yay.


Then, I walked into an unfinished area of our basement, innocently looking for a storage bin to gather all my Christmas craft supplies into.

Yes, I'm ending a sentence with a preposition. It's been one of those days.

Anyway, I walked into the storage area, only to find a flood. Thank you, Jesus, it hadn't gotten to the finished part of the basement and was largely absorbed by three big carpet remnants as it went on its way to the drain by the furnace and water heater.

And of course this area of the basement is full of boxes and bins and stuff. And wet carpet rolls are heavy, heavy, heavy. And wet.

So now I'm waiting for a plumber on weekend rates to fix this leaking pipe.

I guess this is just two things, rather than ten. But it feels like ten. If I get out of this weekend for under $1,000, I'm going to be relieved.

No new stamps for me any time soon.

So let's turn my frown upside down with a card from my recent splurge with a forward-looking card.

Red velvet ribbon. Bling. Christmas. Oh, joy! Christmas will come. Celebrations galore! Decking the halls! And, "God willing and the creek don't rise," working plumbing and a healthy pup!

At least it's something to look forward to.

Another sentence ending in a preposition...it's that sort of weekend.

Farewell while I deal with the plumber.

stamps: Papertrey, Clearly Besotted (sentiment)
ink: SU real red
paper: Papertrey white
accessories: red velvet ribbon, ScorTape, rhinestones

Friday, September 12, 2014

Autumn Adornments, with Bling

I recently commented that it is possible to put too much bling on a card.

This is not such a card.

This wonderful dotty stamp from Papertrey's Autumn Adornments is perfect for a border embellished with bling.

Lots of little, tiny bling.

Oh, the joy of bling!!!

Remember that THANKSGIVING IS A THING. And my Thanksgiving Crusade, formerly known as the Gratitude Campaign, is about to be posted on the special tab labeled, conveniently enough, "Thanksgiving Crusade."

Are you setting a goal this year to send out a certain number of Thanksgiving cards? Or are you, like me, winging it? Do you already know to whom you will send cards? Or are you, like me, awaiting inspiration?

Have you thought about it at all?

Just wondering.

stamps: Papertrey
ink: Hero Arts rust and butter bar, Memento cocoa
paper: Papertrey
accessories: bling (of course)

Thursday, September 11, 2014

Design Choices

For those of us who make CAS cards, placement is HUGELY important.

I mean, Titanic huge.

If you get one tiny little bit of your design placed incorrectly, it sinks the whole design.

Today's cards illustrate the impact of placement on design choices...where an eighth inch can affect balance so much you have to make adjustments to salvage the card.

Our first card is a sweet and simple card made with Autumn Adornments from Papertrey.

The branch of leaves and berries is perfectly curved to drape one corner of the card while the linear sentiment provides a nice contrast. Lines love curves. Also, the balance is good...especially because the berries are embellished with a Smooch that almost exactly matches the Hero Arts rust ink of the sentiment.

But what I want you to notice is that the branch ends midway down the sentiment. In other words, the blessings portion of the sentiment is below the end of the branch. If it were even with the branch, it would look very odd indeed. That eighth-inch drop in the sentiment on the above card makes an enormous difference to the success of the design.

When I made another card with the branch placed in the corner, I wasn't paying close attention to placement. The sentiment and the end of the branch stopped at the same imaginary horizontal line on the card...and it was ugly! Unfortunately, I didn't shoot a picture before I fixed the problem, but if you look at the fixed card below and imagine the bottom branch not there, you might see what I mean.

If you have a really good imagination, that is.

The fix in this case was rather simple...completing the border on the side of the card broke up the imaginary horizontal line and gave the whole card a more appropriate and organic feel. Instead of Smooch, I used paprika Stickles, which gives a nice bit of glittery sparkle to the card, and the single acorn accenting the sentiment unifies the two halves of the design.

And that's all I have to say about that.

stamps: Papertrey Autumn Adornments, Clearly Besotted (Happy sentiment set)
ink: Hero Arts butter bar, rust, pumpkin pie; Memento cocoa
paper: Papertrey
accessories: Smooch, Stickles

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

I'm Back

Wow. That was a great--and long--weekend. We had a fabulous time in Madison, and if you want to see lots of pictures and some video of the experience, please visit THIS POST on my other blog.

Today's card uses the Ombre Builders set from Papertrey. This set works great for its intended use (building a color gradient), but it is also extremely versatile and makes it fun to play with all sorts of color combinations as well. 

This card uses a supply I've not used in a long time: 1/8" satin ribbon. I last used it (I think) to create loops for Christmas ornaments. Here, it creates a dividing line between the polka-dot background and the sentiment. Without the line of ribbon, the sentiment kind of floated in the design.

It's not often that "floaty" designs are good designs.

Now I'm off to my craft space to create. May your week be creative as well!

stamps: Papertrey
ink: VersaMagic ocean depth, tea leaves, jumbo java
paper: Papertrey white
accessories: satin ribbon, dimensionals

Saturday, September 6, 2014

Blingity Bling Bling Bling

Y'all will understand. As much fun as I'm having in Madison, I'm feeling sad that I'm not playing with all the goodness I ordered recently from Papertrey. It's just sitting at home, waiting for me on my desk.

Someone should write a country song about craft supplies missin' their lovers crazies owners.

Anyway, here's yet another card with Ombre Builders from Papertrey. It uses the same stamp as my last card but not wonkily. I love how the same stamp can create a very different look and feel depending on how you use it and what colors you use.

It's blinged out the ying-yang, but I love it so very much. The cool colors and softness of it make me happy.

A word or 20 about the sentiment.... When I first received the PTI Keep It Simple: Thinking of You set, I thought, "I'll never use this one. The font's all light and airy-fairy." Yet here I am, using it.

Don't be prejudiced against certain fonts. You just never know how perfect the weird ones will be when used in just the right setting.

Except Comic Sans, of course.


Does it bother anyone else that "8 year old" isn't hyphenated? It bothers me...even more than the fragment, which stylistically can be excused as informal. The hyphens, though, need to be there.

This picture always makes me laugh because I just love irony and sarcasm.

I'm really not a typography snob, but I do understand the antipathy for Comic Sans.

And now I'm off to eat some more food. I feel like that's pretty much all I've done since arriving in Madison...eat.

Don't you feel sorry for me?

stamps: Papertrey
ink: Hero Arts
paper: Papertrey
accessories: dimensionals, rhinestones