Wednesday, September 30, 2009

No Waste Wednesday: fun with fibers

If you've been scrapbooking or cardmaking for a while, I bet you have some fibers hiding out somewhere, sadly shoved aside as you moved on to all the pretty ribbons that became available. I still use fibers here and there in my projects, but with the stash I've collected I decided I needed to get creative with how I used it. Enter the wrapped fiber border.

To make the fluffy red border on this card I cut a strip of thin chipboard and ran a piece of double sided tape down both sides. Starting at the bottom, I carefully wrapped the fiber around the chipboard strip. This particular fiber is an eyelash fringe, so the top of the fiber stuck to the chipboard while the fringy part flares out, making this fun and furry. I adhered the border with a strong liquid glue (Glossy Accents) to ensure that it didn't go anywhere.

I wanted to overlap my sentiment over the border, but it was so furry I didn't want to try to adhere them to each other. Instead, I took a strip of cardstock (from my scrap file!), bent it to make a little "bridge" and then trimmed the edges to look like a banner. A cute label with a sentiment finishes it off. The fiber makes such a big impact when layered like this, and I still have more of it left!

KI Memories patterned paper (orange); American Crafts patterned paper (dot); Rubba dub dub fiber; Papertrey Ink stamp--Mega Mixed Messages; Versafine by Tsukineko stamping ink; QuicKutz label die; Ranger Glossy Accents liquid glue

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Papertrey Ink

 I got my very first order from Papertrey Ink, and the only thing that I'm disappointed in is the fact that I didn't order more! I make my cards out of my scrapbook supplies, but I often get stuck adding the sentiment. I've been looking for a good set of multi-purpose sentiment stamps, but none of the ones I had been finding fit my style. They were either too formal or not sophisticated enough. I've also been looking for place to buy good quality 8.5x11 cardstock for a long time, and things have been getting serious because I'm out of dark chocolate cardstock for my layout backgrounds. Everything just looks good with that color.

When I came to Papertrey's website (courtesy of Creating Keepsake's blog), I found exactly what I had been searching for. I'm pretty picky and have a good understanding of my style (and therefore, what I won't use), so I typically pick and choose what I want to purchase from most companies. I still had to pick and choose among Papertrey's offerings, but it was due to budgetary constraints! And now that I've "sampled" their products, my wishlist has gotten so much longer! Even better, I love what I've seen of how the company is run and how thoughtful, creative, and inspirational the designers are. It's something I feel great supporting.

Anyway, my friend Jessica and I split an order for maximum buying power! I got 4 colors of the Papertrey cardstock, half a package of kraft envelopes, and three stamp sets. I've been slightly obsessing over damask patterns on everything for a while, so I was super excited to find this Damask Designs set! It's going to take me a long time to get all of my damask ideas out of my head and onto paper. I haven't had a lot of time to play with them yet, but I have finished a few cards (and have many more ideas running around in my head). The first thing I did, though, was finish a few nearly-done cards. They needed sentiments, and since I knew my Papertrey order was on its way, I set them aside until my goodies arrived! Just as I thought, the stamps were the perfect finishing touches.

First, a card for Keith's grandma. It's hard to tell in the photo, but the floral paper is shimmery.

Bazzill Basics cardstock; KI Memories patterned paper; Papertrey Ink stamp--Mega Mixed Messages; Ranger stamping ink; Martha Stewart loop border punch; Michaels ribbon

This was inspired by Papertrey designs. I didn't have the supplies I needed yet, but that didn't stop me from making do with what I did have to create a cute card. The dots were stamped using Versamark ink and then embossed with two layers of Ultra Thick Embossing Enamel to give them a smooth, glossy surface. The dots are from an old foam stamp I have, but I'm enjoying my new acrylic polka dot stamps much more. The curvy label is from some new QuicKutz dies I just got. They were on sale and I knew they would be perfect for cards. I matted the white label on a shimmery silver one.

Bazzill Basics cardstock; Autumn Leaves patterned paper; Basic Grey adhesive pearls; Papertrey Ink stamp--Damask Designs; QuicKutz label dies; Heidi Swapp foam stamp; Versamark watermark ink; Ranger stamping ink; Ranger Ultra Thick Embossing Enamel; ribbon

I can't show the whole card yet (because I'm sharing it tomorrow), but here's the last card that I finished off with a Papertrey stamp. This is another QuicKutz label die; it fits most of the sentiments in Mega Mixed Messages perfectly, so I think you'll be seeing a lot more of it!

I have a half-completed card on the desk in front of me that I'm excited about, but I'm going to have to wait until tomorrow to finish it. I'll share it later!

Monday, September 28, 2009

masculine cards

No update from the doctor yet; hopefully we'll hear tomorrow. Keith and I went on a nice little date tonight that involved a deep dish pizza and a ridiculously rich triple chocolate pizookie. Completely delicious. The company was even better. At one point, Keith was carefully scraping chocolate ice cream off of the Ghirardelli chocolate square and said, "I feel like a dinosaur hunter." I giggled, and then said, "Don't you mean archaeologist or paleontologist?" Which of course led to me snickering uncontrollably and Keith telling me to stop laughing at him. Typical us.

Now, on to some cards! Whenever I need to give a card to one of the men in my life, I often find that my selection of cards is seriously deficient in appropriate choices. Why? Because scrapbooking manufacturers make so many awesome ribbons, flowers and sparkly things. Which means that most of my cards are beribboned, beflowered, or besparkled (those are words, right?). However, if I exercise some restraint, I can create simple, strong, masculine cards. Most men don't want all the fancy details, anyway. Here are two super simple examples.

Bazzill Basics cardstock; KI Memories patterned paper; Heidi Swapp chipboard letters; Making Memories rubon letters; Creative Memories corner rounder

Scrapworks patterned paper; Making Memories rubon letters

Have a great night! I'm going to bed while Keith stays up late to watch the stupid Cowboys who can't figure out that people need to go to sleep at a decent time on a work night!

Sunday, September 27, 2009

proof that doctors are sadists

We already know that doctors have to be a little sadistic, right? They inflict pain (even if it is for a good cause), and they put their patients through humiliating experiences. Hospital gowns, anyone? Here's my recent journey through the rather sadistic world of medicine.

I had a CT scan on Thursday to check out my abdominal and kidney area for the cause of some pains I've been experiencing for about a month. When the insurance precertification finally came through, I got scheduled for a scan that afternoon. They said I wasn't allowed to eat for 4 hours prior to the scan, because some people get nauseated from the contrast dye. The phone call came right before I ate lunch, which is good, except for the fact that it meant I had to go over 8 hours without eating, instead of just the 4. Then they told me I had to come pick up some barium (it's a contrast agent that helps organs show up in the scans) and drink it two hours before the scan. I stopped by the office and picked up not one, but two large bottles of barium " berry smoothie." I had to drink one at 2:00 and one at 3:00. When I opened the first one, it kind of smelled good. Now I know why they REALLY don't let you eat for 4 hours before the scan--they figure if they can get you hungry enough, you'll actually look forward to downing a giant bottle of metal suspension. They're right.

My lunch. Don't you like how they stragetically place the berry photos on the bottles to make it look like a delicious fruit smoothie?

Turns out, the relatively pleasant berry flavor gets overpowered by the taste of, well, metal. It wasn't terrible, but drinking it felt like drinking out of one of those little doll bottles, where you drinkdrinkdrink and it looks like it's emptying, but when you set the bottle back down it looks the same as when you started. Oddly enough, even after finishing off the bottomless smoothies, I wasn't full. You know what kind of food sounded good after finishing the second one? The edible kind.

After arriving at the imaging place, they asked me if I was allergic to iodine or shellfish, because they were going to give me a contrast dye via IV, and some people have an allergic reaction. I told them that I didn't know about iodine, and that I'm okay with crab but havn't tried lobster because both my mom and grandmother were very allergic to it. Their response? "That's okay; we have benadryl."

The technologist (not nurse, not technician. Technologist. That's what the sign said) brought me to a changing room and told me to change into a top and a set of bottoms. Awesome, I don't have to wear a gown! No, I got to wear this:

Not a great photo, and I forgot to look at the camera, but check out my new threads!

This photo is incapable of fully conveying the awesomeness of those shorts. These were the small/meduim size, and the only part of them touching my body was the waistband. The hip area protruded out in a balloon about 6 inches in every direction. I'm convinced the only purpose of these shorts is to give the doctors (and technicians) a little giggle throughout the day.

The fun wasn't over yet. For the CT scan they had me lie down on a long, skinny bed that passed back and forth through the middle of something that looked like it came from Stargate, complete with whirring and whooshing noises. The technician gave me some instructions, then left the room. A few minutes into the scan, a bossy automated voice told me to breathe in and hold my breath. I did, and then after about 15 seconds she said, "breathe." A little bit later she told me to hold my breath again, only she didn't say, "breathe," after 15 seconds. Or 30 seconds. Trickery! She conned me into thinking the second one would be as easy as the first! Finally, I got to breathe again and then it was time for the contrast dye. The technician said the dye would make me feel hot and flushed (no problem, I was a little chilly, anyway), would give me a metallic taste in my mouth (so what? I already drank two metal smoothies), and that it would make me feel like I needed to pee (great. now I get to hold my breath and my bladder). After I made it through the second round of scans, the technician told me to I needed to drink a gallon of water that evening and a gallon of water the next day to flush the dye out of my kidneys. Have you ever gotten sick to your stomach from drinking too much water? Never had I...until Thursday.

The whole experience actually wasn't bad at all. The most painful part was the post-IV tape on my arm. But, an "I had a CT scan and everything went fine" story wouldn't be nearly as entertaining, would it? Silly/embarrassing story aside, hopefully I'll know the results of the scans on Monday, and I'd appreciate your prayers. I'm not in a lot of pain, but the discomfort is pretty constant, and I'm praying for a diagnosis with an easy solution.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

hello friend

Do you recognize this paper? I made another card with scraps from the layouts I made on Friday. Actually, "scraps" seems like the wrong word, because I still have tons of paper left. I'll either save it for a future layout...or make more cards with it!

I made the fun green shape by tracing a pretty journaling page from Making Memories.I think it adds just the right touch to change the paper from looking sporty to looking sweet, don't you?

American Crafts patterned paper, felt flowers, and ribbon; Scrapworks rubon letters; Making Memories brad and journaling card (for template)

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

No Waste Wednesday: mini card set

My frugal nature means that I keep all but the tiniest of paper scraps (neatly sorted in hanging files and in ROYGBIV order, of course). My organized nature means I don't like lots of extra "stuff" sitting around and not getting used. I've found that cards are the perfect way for me to put my scraps to good use.

This is the first No Waste Wednesday, where I show how I've used my scraps and excess supplies to make some pretty cute projects. Hope you find some inspiration!

All of these cards were created using cardstock and patterned paper from my scrap files. I actually cut a card base first based on a cardstock piece I found and then discovered that the Heidi Swapp foam stamp fit perfectly to make a background. Once I saw how cute it turned out I searched through my cardstock scraps for more 3.5 x 7" pieces in coordinating colors. The American Crafts felt flowers were so much fun to mix and match and I think they give just the right touch to the cards.


 Bazzill Basics cardstock; KI Memories patterned paper; American Crafts felt flowers, rubon letters, and sentiments; Making Memories brads; Heidi Swapp foam stamp (dotted background); Versamark by Tsukineko stamping ink; Delta Stitchless Washable Fabric Glue (adhesive for felt)

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

lace flower card

I think this card is a great example of how I get inspired just by looking at supplies that are laid out on my desk. I don't think I would have thought to pair these two papers if I hadn't seen them together. I like how the bold diagonal stripes give a funky look to the more traditional floral pattern. I didn't want to distract from the graphic nature of the card, so I just added glitter to the large flower on the right by coloring it in with my Sakura Quickie Glue pen and then using a clear sparkle embossing powder. It's very pretty in person! What you should not do is ask me how long I moved the die cut paper around over the top of the card base trying to figure out just the right portion of the design to use.

In case you're wondering, I called this a lace flower card because the manufacturer calls this die cut paper lace paper.

KI Memories patterned paper and die cut paper; Sakura Quickie Glue pen; Hero Arts embossing powder

Monday, September 21, 2009

cards with texture

I really enjoy using texture in my scrapbooks, but it's even more fun to use it on cards because there's not a piece of plastic in the way (okay, protecting it, but it still sometimes gets in the way!). By giving someone a card with texture, you're indulging their sense of touch as well as their sense of sight. These cards have flocking, which just begs to be touched!
Doodlebug Designs flocked paper; Autumn Leaves; Making Memories ribbon and rhinestone brad; Cricut die cut flowers

I'm pretty proud of this card, because not only is it cute, but it was also made using materials in different ways. The green stripe on this card is actually a piece of a green and clear striped cellophane treat bag I snagged at a party. I thought it looked great with the more ornate flocked green paper. I made the white scallop by using the edge of some circular patterned die cut paper. I only had it in blue and red, so I flipped it over and used the white side to go with the card's color scheme. The brad is embossed with silver and clear sparkle embossing powder.
Bazzill Basics cardstock (grey); Worldwin Papers cardstock (pink); Doodlebug Designs flocked paper; KI Memories die cut paper; Prima paper flower; Making Memories brad; Duro Decal Co., Inc. letter stickers; vellum; cellophane bag

I love this card. Love it. It's simple, but the textures and patterns make it special. The pink circle is a metal circle I pulled off of a breast cancer awareness keychain (and it matches the pink ribbon in real life). The rhinestone brad is covering up the hole where the ring went through.
Doodlebug Designs flocked paper; KI Memories patterned paper; Making Memories glitter letter stickers and rhinestone brad; Fiskars corner punch; metal keychain; ribbon

Sunday, September 20, 2009

SC Squared layouts

Here are the finished layouts that I started on Friday during Super Secret Crafting Club (see previous post).

Can I just say that UNT green shirts are just about the hardest thing to scrap ever? I understandably have a ton of photos of us in Mean Green, but all of the green scrapbook papers and accents I have are in a lovely bright green that has more yellow in it. I wonder if our marketing department would be receptive to me asking them to change the school color? I mean, I totally have a good reason.
Bazzill Basics cardstock; American Crafts patterned paper, foam letter stickers, and brads; Autumn Leaves journaling stamp; Creative Imaginations rubon ("Game Day"); Versafine by Tsukineko stamping ink

This isn't really what I had in my head, but those tickets threw a wrench in things. Having memorabilia on the page (instead of behind it, which I sometimes do) makes Keith happy, so I try to do it as often as possible.
Bazzill Basics cardstock; American Crafts patterned paper and felt letter stickers

I also created a card with some of the patterned paper scraps leftover from the Muse layout. The tiny green scallops are actually from my loop punch, but I only let the very tip of them peek out from behind the patterned paper. The small flower is adhered with one layer of dimensional adhesive, and the "Hi" circle is adhered with a double layer. I like how the varying heights make the card even more interesting.
Bazzill Basics cardstock; American Crafts patterned paper and felt flowers; Making Memories mini brad; Recollections tiny brad; KI Memories rubon word; Martha Stewart loop punch

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Super Secret Crafting Club

Yesterday was the maiden voyage (inaugural run? charter meeting?) of the Super Secret Crafting Club. This not-really-secret-at-all group is actually created through an open invitation to coworkers and their spouses. A coworker friend of mine likes having the accountability of regularly scheduled scrapbook sessions and also recently took up cardmaking. So that no one would be left out, the gatherings were expanded to include all manner of crafty things.

We met in our conference room at work, so I got started soon after 4:00 and the others came in as they got off work. We watched girly movies (since we have some guys who are promising to join us next time, maybe I'll bring some more gender neutral movies), ate cookies, crafted, and had a great time. It was fun to see the variety of people's creative outlets. Carole came and knitted for a while. Tiffany and Chandra made cards.
Laura, Tiffany and Chandra

Christina crocheted and colored (and brought some awesome cookies!), and Amanda sorted photographs that she's going to scan and turn into a coffee table book.
Amanda and Christina

Laura and Carlynn tried a new process that involves ironing plastic grocery bags to meld them together into a material that can be sewn into something awesome.

I scrapbooked.

Not only did I scrapbook, but I finished a 2-page layout minus the journaling block (can't believe I forgot my journaling pen!) and got pretty close to finishing another layout. That's quite an accomplishment for me. I'm going to finish those up and post them tomorrow, hopefully.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

happy 27

Two months ago today my sister-in-law, Cherie, turned 27. I sent her this card that's just as fun and attention-getting as she is. It uses a printed transparency and a patterned paper with the same design in the same color. The inside of the card is green (Bazzill green tea, one of my favorite cardscock colors), and it shows through the transparency when you close the card. The pink strip serves to hide the glue seams, so the card looks just as finished on the inside as it does on the front. Happy 27.167 years, Cherie!

cardstock: Bazzill Basics; transparency: Hambly; patterned paper: Hambly (turquoise), KI Memories (pink); chipboard letters: Heidi Swapp

For the record, I actually sent this card two months ago. I just didn't post it. If I was two months late with a birthday card, you'd be seeing a lot more groveling here!

Tuesday, September 15, 2009


A (seemingly) simple card. I've learned that I have a superpower that involves making anything I do more complicated than it probably needs to be. Dang perfectionism.

cardstock: Bazzill Basics; letter stickers (traced) and glitter markers: American Crafts; font: fun font; craft foam

Friday, September 11, 2009

Hey, I scrapbooked!

Sometimes, the best way for me to get back in the groove of scrapping is to make cards. I got to spend Labor Day playing with my scrapbook supplies and now I feel inspired to go create!

one layout and 9 cards. I call that a pretty good day!

My desire and inspiration for scrapbooking goes in cycles, and is usually inversely related to the amount of time I spend at work. This July and August I worked the hardest (and most hours) I think I ever have. Subsequently, no scrapbooking. By the time I got home, I was practically brain dead and certainly didn't have any inclination to pull out my scrapping stuff. (To be honest, I was so tired I didn't even talk much in the evenings. I am so grateful that Keith not only understood, but put up with me making him late for work because I was chattering away in the mornings trying to tell him all the things I didn't have the energy to say the night before. I was a completely different person after my batteries had recharged!)

Labor Day weekend was great, and not just because of my return to scrapbooking. On Saturday we had our third quarterly (get that?) family game day. A full day of family (including some friends we've "adopted"), games, and lots of food. Sunday we met up with some friends at church and were able to worship side by side with them and then spent dinner and dessert connecting with them in a way that filled a little bit of my heart. They are such encouraging, inspiring people. Monday was dedicated to scrapping and football--the perfect bumming day! Basically, a fabulous weekend.