Magic Box Blog Candy

I usually post blog candy in my blog candy page…but I couldn’t resist telling everyone about blog candy from one of my inspirations in London. The Magic Box lady of all ladies is giving away some of her magic. Elaine creates the most amazing magic boxes and is giving away a stash of fun on her blog – Head over there before February 26th for a chance to win!

While there, check out her awesome and very thoughtful, not to mention thorough, tutorial! What a dream come true to learn how she makes her magic boxes sparkle!


Homemade Birthday Card in Soft White

Homemade Birthday Card in Soft White

***Special note***this homemade birthday card in all of it’s soft white and blue (or teal) has been strongly inspired by flutterbyatomicbutterfly. You simply must look at her original.

I simply love the soft rich elegance of this card. 

Soft and Rich Homemade Birthday Wishes

I couldn’t resist making two of these cards. One is slightly more blue. The other more teal. One has a more bold graphic element, the other has smaller detailed type elements. Which do you prefer?

There is a layer of white paper that is embossed with a cuttlebug embossing plate. The circle is cut out using a QuicKutz die on the cuttlebug. The circle and scalloped circle in the middle are from punches. The brown ribbon is from Creative Impressions and is sandwiched between the circle layers then adhered to the card on the sides near the tails. This allows the circle punches to float in the opening.

This first card (the teal) is made using stamps from a clear acrylic set from Hero Arts. Some buttons and gems finish off the card.

The inside is simple and straight forward. Just some butterflies decorate the bottom.

I decided I wanted to make the card again and use more of a baby blue paper – to more closely imitate the original.

I couldn’t leave well enough alone, so I also used some Tim Holtz distress ink around the outer edges of the card. I also used different stamps (I’m not sure who makes them cause I think my sister has the set). But I wanted to see what the card would look like with a smaller image in the circle.

Inside the blue I stamped “Warmest Wishes” (from My Sentiments Exactly) in brown and I added a butterfly. I also distressed the edges inside.

Love this card a lot. Think it will be one I make several more of for family birthday cards.

Homemade Valentine Box

Homemade Valentine Box – Movie Night

My sweetheart and I don’t usually make a big deal out of Valentine’s Day. This year I asked him to buy me a little chocolate heart from the grocery store. Nothing fancy. I was simply going to make a card, but was inspired by my sister to make a valentine’s box with a movie theme. Check out Deborah’s Valentine Box. I took the simple approach to my box. Oh, wait….that’s my new approach anyhow!

homemade valentine box

I decided to use a hinge on the valentine, because my husband assures me that hinges are very masculine. I also distressed all the edges with Tim Holtz black distress ink because my husband loves the distressed look. (Check out my husband distressing paper). My one accent that I’m not sure about is the giant sized button.

I chose this button because it had an elevated back for sewing to clothes. I usually try to make all my buttons flat but this time I wanted it to be more of a handle for opening the little door. I hole punched the paper twice then used scrappers floss the tie the button onto the card.

I colored the ice cream with copics and aged it with Tim Holtz distress ink. The stamp is from Stampin’ Up. The words “I Love You” are from My Sentiments Exactly. The hindge is from Jo-Ann Essentials. The button is from an old sweater!

I used red marker on the letters after I stamped it in black. Also used glitter gelly roller pen on the letters and around the ice cream. I put two small white pen marks – one on the cherry and one on the chocolate ice cream.

When you open the door you get a sneak peek at the inside and there’s a little pocket card that holds a gift card – in this case to the movies. There is a piece of acetate / transparency which the gift card pocket is adhered to.

To get to the candy you simply remove the entire lid. The door makes it appear that you access the insides through the door. But it’s really just a lid much like a gift box you get for sweaters.

You are not suppose to take candy into the movie with you. And my husband doesn’t usually eat candy at the movies, but I thought it would make a cute little Valentine package. Cause, well, they sell candy at the movies!

Homemade Cards with Neon Paper

Homemade Get Well and Thank You Card with Neon Papers

My good friend Vickie loves paper. She had a box of paper samples that she absolutely  adored. (You know, the kind that sales people leave behind at paper stores like Xpedx).  I say had, because she recently gave them to me! Wow, what an honor.

Vickie emailed me shortly after giving me the books of paper samples to discuss the neon paper. Just between you and me, I think she was a little worried that I wouldn’t cherish the bright colors as much as she did. She suggested I could make cards for teenagers with the bright colors. Sure, that’s definitely a possibility. We joked back and forth via email about the neon colors. That’s when I knew – I was going to make her a card with the neon brights.

Homemade Neon Thank You Card

I determined to make a card for my friend that used only papers from the sample books that she gave me and one of the requirements was to incorporate bright neon paper.

bright neon card with geckos

One of the paper stacks had this image of gecko’s to illustrate what printing would look like on it. I thought it too fun not to make a card out of. I created a thank you tag (Denami stamp) on bright neon green paper. I distressed the tag with Tim Holtz distress ink. I also used a special black cardstock for the front of the card that was the cover of one of the paper book. It has a beautiful embossed pattern on it – which is all but covered up.

neon stack also had shiney gecko on vellum

For the inside I added a shiney gecko that was on a piece of vellum in the paper book. I think he makes a cute addition here. The inside has neon green paper on the left (I needed to cover some glue marks from where I ripped the paper from the sample book) and bright yellow on the right.

When paired with the geckos and black cardstock, the neon almost looks natural, like they are colors you could use all the time on any card! And that’s what Vickie noticed, too.

Homemade Neon Get Well Card

One of the things my friend Vickie suggested in one of our emails was that I make a get well soon card for a friend of ours who’s having knee surgery. She suggested that the neon colors would make a nice bright and cheerful card. Not wanting to disappoint, I created a Get Well Soon card using neon bright paper.

Get Well Soon card incorporates neon paper!

Well, here it is. What do you think? Again, I think the neon’s look natural here on this brown paper. In fact, I think the bright neon paper makes the flowers look happy! I love happy! The flowers and punch are Stampin’ Up. The blue is embossed through my cuttlebug with distressed blue ink to highlight the embossing. The Get Well Soon stamp is stampabilities. The flowers are folded up to give depth and have little buttons in the center which have scrappers floss tied through them.

Inside I brought in some more embossed blue and scallop trim punched green.

So there you are. My neon paper experiment. A few years ago I think I would have stared at the neon paper and scratched my head in bewilderment. When in doubt, make flowers! =)

Distressed Art

Distress as Art

I was pleasantly surprised a few weekends ago when my husband decided to spend a little time with me in my craft room (a.k.a. the dining room). I showed him a couple techniques Tim Holtz uses to distress paper and away he went!

We played around with distressing and embossing for a couple of hours. A few pieces of the distressed/embossed paper particularly caught our attention so we made a few cards.

Teamwork: my husband distressed, I embossed and created a card

We used Tim Holtz distress ink to create the pink and brown colors. Then we ran the strip of distressed paper through a cuttlebug embossing plate. We also ran a pink distress ink pad across the top to highlight the embossing. Too cute!

Similar to the first card, husband distressed paper with ink and I embossed and created the card

Here my husband played around with red and yellow inkpads. I used the same embossing plate but a different portion of it. Again, we ran the red ink pad across the raised embossed portion of the card. I added some Creative Impressions swirl ribbon. I used a Making Memories slot punch to create a slot for the ribbon.

These bits of distressed and embossed paper practically look like bits of artwork!

Completely man made distressed card

Let me give credit where credit is due. My husband made 100% of this card. He chose a piece of distressed paper that he liked. He attempted to bleach the words “thank you” but instead it made a big bleach puddle. So he filled in the puddle with a red thank you. Quite an interesting effect. He loved it and it gave me a better picture of what a masculine card should look like.

We played around for a couple hours distressing paper. Most of the papers were about 2″ x 3″. So nearly all the papers he distressed will lend themselves to mini artwork type projects. Here is a shot of our handiwork.

A distressed mess

And the master at work.

Ronnie holds up a distressed masterpiece

Here you can see the special Tim Holtz mat we used to create the distressed papers. My husband simply ran the distress ink pads across the plastic mat, spritzed with water and rubbed the paper on the ink/water droplets.

Thank you sweetheart!

Stamping Retreat

Stamping Retreat – What Others Created

We had a delighful time at the stamping retreat. Silly me, however, I forgot to take my camera. My girlfriend kindly sent me photos of the cards that she created at the retreat. So I will highlight them here for you.

A fabulous card from my friend

Nadeen created this card after seeing something quite similar in the January/February 2010 Paper Crafts Magazine. Her representation is “fabulous”. This card also included sewing….which I believe was the first card that my new/used sewing machine was used on.

Can you see all the gorgeous paper Nadeen used on this card? And check out the three orange brads bottom. Beautiful.

Nadeen paints the girls

I love these coffee drinking girls, don’t you. This is a Denami stamp that Nadeen picked up at a stamp show last summer. Too cute!

Nadeen and her coffee cards

The last of Nadeen’s cards really hits to the heart of her style….coffee! She used some shiney copper accents in the coffee cup and on the edges of the card. Nice!

Thanks Nadeen for coming to the retreat and for sending me photos of your cards!

Wedding Card Labels 8

Wedding Card using Labels 8

If you’re following my blog, then you know I have a new love in the shape of labels 8 from Spellbinders. I created several birthday cards which I fell in love with. I loved how the cards turned out with the accent of a circle shape. So decided that my little stamp of a bride and groom would also be cute.

wedding card using labels 8

There is a bit of sparkle on the card. I traced the black swirls and the wedding dress with a gelly roller glitter pen. I love the extra sparkle it provides. The gems are actually silver pearls. A bit of sheer ribbon adorning silver, black and white paper make for one elegant wedding or anniversary card!

Pink Birthday Cards Labels 8

Round 2 of Birthday Cards using Labels 8 Dies

I had a vision for pink and white birthday cards using the Spellbinders Labels 8 die cut shapes. My vision did not include the final look and feel of the card, just that it would be combination of pink and white in the die shape.

I was a bit nervous to create the card since I wasn’t sure of the final result. But I’m very glad I attempted it because I love these cards!

Flower cards using labels 8 dies

Loving these pink flower cards using labels 8 dies

These cards use a total of two stamps! The cupcake stamp is from Stampin’ Up and the swirl stamp is new from Hero Arts. The label shape is from Spellbinders. Love it!

Close-up of Pink Flower Birthday Card using Labels 8

The first card I created was my following my vision more purely. Meaning, I just used the solid pink and white. After I created the cirlcle shape with scallop background I decided that it would be adorable as a flower. So I added the ribbon (Creative Impressions).

I colored the cupcake using Copics – though you can’t really tell. I added some gems to the sides, to accent the label shape. I love the simplicty of this card.

Close-up of Pink Flower Birthday Card using Labels 8 Die

I must give credit to my sister, Deborah, for offering some suggestions for enhancing the look of the pink flower card on labels 8 die. Believe it or not I was quite skeptical of her suggestions. Low and behold, I like her version better than my own!

The major difference between this version and the first is the addition of the swirl stamp (Hero Arts). I wasn’t sure I wanted to see all the color and embellishments on the top pink portion, but after I put it all together, I thought it quite adorable.

Homemade Birthday Cards Labels 8

Homemade Birthday Cards using Labels 8 Die

The Spellbinders label die cuts are amazing! I’ve had my eye on Labels 8 for a long time. I think it looks very similar to a Stampin’ Up die. I’ve seen sooo many cute projects that were made using the label shape that I put it on my Christmas list and woo hoo – I got it! (Thank you DC and Mary – that’s my brother and his wife).

I recently held a stamping retreat. Invited all my friends and family to attend. The night before the last day of the stamping retreat I got a vision for using my new labels 8 dies. I could hardly wait to rush over to my sisters house to start creating!

labels 8 birthday cards

Here are the first two cards I created using my new Spellbinders Labels 8 die cut shapes. My vision the night before I made these was to use pink and white paper. Hmmm….red is close to pink. Though not like I envisioned, I’m still happy with these cards.

Close-up of Poppy Birthday Card 1

My new goal in stamping is to create simple cards. Time is becoming more valuable, but more importantly, I love simple elegance.

In this first card, I decided to stamp the poppy (Stampin’ Up, I believe) right on top of the white and red. What’s funny is that I couldn’t figure out what type of flower this was until after I colored it. It looks just like the poppy’s I had in my garden last year….which I love!

I colored the flower using my Copic markers. I added the birthday wishes stamp (My Sentiments Exactly), some ribbon and gems. Not sure if it shows up, but I also used a glitter pen on the yellow of the flower.

Close-up of Poppy Birthday Card 2

I decided to use the left over scraps of white and red and try another variation of the poppy card. Here ya go.

This card did not meet my goal of simplicity! It’s not too complex, but still took more time than the first card. First of all, I sewed on the card. My second card ever to sew on (as you can tell by looking at the top right corner!). Secondly, I colored the flowers then cut them out and used puffy tape to adhere to the card. I created a tag, which makes for extra step number three.

All in all it’s still a fairly simple card and I like it.

Homemade Thank You Flowers and Tag Punch

Homemade Stampin’ Up Thank You Card with Flowers, Jewelry Tag Punch and Scallop Trim Punch

As a small token of my appreciation, I handmade some thank you cards for the gals who came to my stamping retreat and purchased some product at my Stampin’ Up party. This is another one of those cards that I literally had a vision for, albeit a very rough draft of a vision. I saw a strip in the center of a card with multiple colored 3D items. Not necessarily a new layout, but something that inspired me to get up and create. I think there is something similar in one of the new Stampin’ Up catalogs, but the vision I saw somehow enabled me to create the card you see here.

homemade thank you card with tag and scallop trim punch

The flowers are from a 2004 Stampin’ Up set (I just inherited). They are cut out and 3D. The buttons are from a random collection and they have scrappers floss tied through them. The yellow button is strung to the new jewelry tag from Stampin’ Up. Love it! The green is punched with the new scallop trim punch (only my second border punch – can you believe it!). The Thank You sentiment is from Denami. All the colored ink is Tim Holtz Distress ink. Black is Memento.

I created the card a second time distressing the edges so that it wasn’t soo stark white. Check it out.

Distressed Version

A bit of distressing to calm the stark whiteness

Not sure if you can tell, but I distressed the white paper with green. I also distressed the flowers a bit more. For instance, the yellow flower was distressed on the edge with red ink which when added to yellow turns orange. Not sure the distressing shows up in the photo all that well.

So, which do you prefer?   I thought I would prefer the distressing. Seems that’s all I do these days. But when it was all said and done, I decided that I prefer the white. It has a clean crisp look about it. It also seems more simple – which is my new desired style.

Anyhoo, I have created 5 cards so far. I think they are fun and not too complicated!