Thursday, January 30, 2014

Have come across a really cool technique to add bling to your cards and pages very inexpensively.  No more buying swirls of pearls that cost $4 and more AND you may already have all the tools necessary for this technique in your arsenal.  I have to give credit where credit is due and tell you that this is where I first saw the idea for this.  Or you can find it on my Pinterest boards under Bling.

For this you need Versamark pad, paper, a stamp and either Viva Decor pens, Adirondack Dimensional Pearls, Liquid Pearls or even Stickles.  I'm sure there others you can use but these are the ones I am familiar with.  A note about stamps here:  stamps that are a flourish type are the ones you want to use.  Stampin' Up! makes many and there is a perfect one by Inkadinkadoo called Dot Swirls that is ideal. That is the one I'm using for the purposes of this demo.

HINT:  I have found that seeing the Versamark ink is easier on darker paper rather than lighter.  That's not saying you can't do it on white or light paper.  It's just easier on dark.  First thing you want to do is ink up your stamp with the Versamark.  You can use regular Versamark or one of the "colors" such as Versamark Champagne or Versamark Dazzle Frost or one of the others.  Stamp firmly on your surface giving it good pressure.  Remember, I'm just using a scrap to show you but you would be doing this right on your card, tag or scrapbook page.  The second picture shows what the versamark looks like stamped.  This is on green paper.

Then you start with your choice of whatever bottle of bling you want to use and you go along the lines and dot with small circles or dabs if you will of your medium.  The particular stamp I used has larger and smaller dots on it so I attempted to do that with the pearls I used.  I have found that Viva makes flatter dots and Dimensional Pearls and Liquid Pearls tend to make dots that have a "peak." There is a way around this.  You use to fingers to flick the underside of the paper GENTLY and the peaks will flatten.You can see the "post flicking" flatter effect on the second picture.

Then you simply finish off your swirls with dots of the pearls or whatever you are using and TA DA!  You're finished.  I have seen this done years ago where you laid a piece of transparency over a swirl design from a catalogue or book.  Then make your dots on the transparency and afterwards cut it out close to the swirls once it is dried.  In fact I used that method once or twice.  Problem is, it's a pain to cut out.  The transparency doesn't show too badly on your layouts.  But I much prefer this to that method.  You also can always use just a portion of your swirl...whatever you need to fill in your card of layout and make it look the way you want.  I hope you'll give this a try.  I found it to be a lot of fun!

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Ding Dong, Ring that Patriotic Bell!

Remember I told you in my last post I had another luminary in the works.  I had this stamp set from Flourishes called Patriotism on Parade and it has this nifty patriotic bunting in it.  I could just see this in the luminary and an idea was born.  I think I FINALLY have this die and constructing it down pat.  Takes me awhile.....what do you want for 67 years old!!!

 Anyhoo, I stamped four of the swags, colored them with copics and used a Viva pearl pen to represent the stars.  I tried coloring in the stars with the blue around them.......way too hard for this girl.  The bell in the center actually rings and I've had it in my stash forever.  The red glittered flower I just picked up in Michaels sale bin....wish they had had more!  The little doo dad on the top that sort of looks like a firework (can fireworks be single???), was on a package from some fancy schmancy place I received for Christmas many moons ago.  I saved them....YAY!

 The key on the front represents the key to freedom which belongs to us....good old fashioned Americans.  Sometimes we lose keys (you know that feeling??) but we have to do all we can to hold onto this one.  I dedicate this piece to all those military families across the country, past and present.  My thoughts are with you.

This project has been entered in the challenge for  

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

On a snowy day......think spring!

Well it's coming down here horizontally and the wind is awful. Wind chills below zero.  Pretty to look at but only good for one thing----staying inside to papercraft of course!  Snow?  Love it and hate it.  Here's my contribution today:

I wanted to make another of these luminaries because since making the last one I discovered some important tips which might help you out should you try one.  I was having an issue with finding the right material to cut that would show the fold lines but still be easy to crease or fold.  This chipboard I got at Michaels this week.  They had all their paper, specialty and otherwise, half price.  Recollections makes it and though fairly lightweight it worked very well.  I also spoke with Sizzix on the phone and they suggested I try NOT using the Premium Crease Pad and just use the regular extended cutting pads---BINGO!  So much easier.  You might want to try this. All machines have their unique quirks and oddities.  Some may need the crease pad and others, like mine, not.  I just realized that I forgot to show you one of the sides.  They are all flowers, birds, nests, bugs etc.  This piece was entered in a challenge at   Papertake Weekly Now that I think I have a handle on this die, I have an idea for another one.  Stay tuned!

Monday, January 20, 2014

A Challenge!

I entered the card below in the Shabby Tea Room challenge for this week. Check out their blog at and    They have some really lovely projects there.  My friend Diane Hover has been bugging me to enter some challenges so here's my effort for this week!  Thanks for the push Diane!  The challenge required you to enter a project with white/cream, red, green, silver and a bow.  I used the IO snow globe die and evergreen branch die and the Spellbinders Radiant Rectangles.  Wish me luck!

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Luminary Tutorial......let's call it help with the luminary!

Since this is such a work intensive project I thought I'd give some helpful hints on issues I found quirky putting this together.  In the last post we already talked about what material to use.  In the meantime I tried cereal box weight chipboard and the backs of some old Stampin' Up! pads.  Neither worked......they are too stiff to crease and the creases are the bugger about this IMHO!

First you need to use your Big Shot and the sandwich for this goes, from bottom up, cutting plate, paper, die, and crease pad.  No top cutting plate is needed.  Take extra care that your blades in the die are NOT next to the crease pad.  And for this die you will need the extended cutting surface.  Cut four of the sides, two of the roof and one base.

I think it's helpful to have one of the sides made from a scrap in front of you to remind you (visually) of how the creases or folds go.
As for supplies, I was constantly using my bone folder and a small ruler.  If you can't see the crease line, and depending on the print of the paper it might be hard to, you can use those to re-crease the folds.  Also you can use whatever adhesive you like.  I used a quick drying adhesive, Sookwang tape, and a glue gun with a very fine tip.  Joann's --like $5.

First I do the base which is just like making the lid of a box.  Four equal sides with small tabs to glue and adhere to the edges.  Put aside.

Then I would do the roof.  The large point on the roof is a "valley" fold.  It goes down.  The other two creases on each roof piece turn up, a "mountain" fold.  Each half has a tab on one side.  You join the two and once you do that you just sort of bend it into the shape it needs to be.  It looks confusing but it's not really.  Set the completed roof aside.

Now you are ready for the sides.  Take a deep breath and maybe a break here!   When you start to do your folds or creases on each side, after you fold a set of them, use your bone folder to give a good sharp crease to each SET of folds.  I found this to be a big help.
 As you start to glue your sides together it's impossible to glue the long side seam plus the seams and tabs at the top and bottom.  So just start with the long seam and do that first.  Then you can do the tops and bottoms after. In the first photo below you see the one side ready to go with tabs folded in and then doing the long seam on the corner first.  Then you can do the tops and bottom corners on each side.  I find it's easier this way but you do it whichever way you are comfortable.

Finally you can finish all four sides then add the roof.  I just put a dot of glue on each corner of the top and set the roof in place.  The pics below show what I consider to be a "good" base corner and a not so good one.

Now you can decorate to your heart's content.   Hope this was helpful in case you want to try it.  I wouldn't shy away from it because it gets easier the more you do.  And while this came out at Christmas as a holiday luminary, it makes a great Halloween lantern, a spring or easter theme and a patriotic theme as well.  I can think of all kinds of occasions it would lend itself to!

It's really embarrassing............. long it's been!  Really!  I have neglected my bad.  After the hullabaloo of the holidays, I came down on the 26th with a really nasty cold.  Then hubs got it as I finished mine.  Then dear son got it and gave it back to me.  Still coughing but sleeping and feeling better.

I passed my 70,000 mark on my blog plus almost another 200 and still no posting!  For shame.........I'm here to make it up to you.

What you see below is my Happy New Year Please Forgive Me project.  Ta da!  The Sizzix Tim Holtz 3D luminary.  Now, a caveat first......not for the faint of heart.  However I learned a lot on this first one and am trying another today.  Some advice:  no heavy chipboard (it wont crease and there are LOTS of creases in this die), no thin paper (won't hold up), not even sure cereal weight chipboard will work.  A nice heavy double sided paper is your best bet.  It's stiffer and will still handle those creases.  My sample is just a run of the mill double sided paper from my stash.  I used vellum in the windows but you don't have to use anything. If you are going to use a window, tape or glue it in before assembly, much easier.  I used some ric rac and braided trim around the bottom to cover some gaps where the sides joined.  I found this die hard to get nice tight join where those folds are.  This is just IMHO inexperience with the die and how it goes together.  On your second or fifth go round, you'll get it.  I always say the first one is a learning experience and you improve on each one.  I'm so convinced this is the case with this die that I can't wait to try another.  I went with some die cut greenery and flowers from my stash.  Michaels right now has this card pack of 12 flowers in the $1.50 bin in various color families and they are the NICEST flowers.  For a buck fifty, they're the quality of Prima without the big price.  Going back for some more!

The luminary sits OVER not ON a base on which you can sit a tea light.  Just lift off the top to turn the light on.  If you don't use a tea light, you don't need to make the base.  I went with a spring theme since I'm totally done with cold and winter weather (and illness) so I hope you enjoy it.  Any questions, please email.  Be happy to help you with this one.  Remember to double click for a closer look.  Have a great crafting day!

This project has been entered in the Delicious Doodles challenge and the