Friday, May 22, 2015

Quick Card using #AnnaGriffin #Metalasse #EmbossingFolder & #MarthaStewart #Butterfly #Stickers

Finally got to use some new goodies I picked up! But this one was a toughie because I could NOT for the life of me find my packet of 12x12 Anna Griffin printed papers I know I have.  I had envisioned fussy cutting some fabulous AG style floral bouquets to add as a center piece for my hand woven golden background.  I think I will die if I never find my AG packet of paper. I will persevere and find it hopefully.

Speaking of the hand woven golden background, I recently picked up this Matelasse embossing folder at Joann's recently when it was marked down on clearance and I was able to use a 40% off coupon on top of that! I haven't bought anything scrappy in this steal of a price, how could I resist? Plus, all I could see was weaving this embossed design in so many kinds of paper finishes, so you may see this EF pop up frequently because I'm madly in love.

I would have preferred to kept this card strictly Anna Griffin, but this turned out to be a bit of a mod podge because I could only draw on the supplies I threw into my Cropper Hopper Navigator rolling luggage for a 4 day weekend trip in Central California to visit my other half's family.

I have to admit, couldn't figure out where to place a sentiment title, so I'm going to just leave this as a blank all occasions card.

Definitely a quick and easy card that came together in my hotel room this past weekend. Thanks for visiting.


"Golden Monarch Butterfly" Card
Paper: Bazzil CS; Michael's Metallic CS; SEI Windsor Collection Foil PP
Stamps: SU Swallowtail
Ink: SU More Mustard
Embellishments: Anna Griffin Matelasse EF; Martha Stewart Elegant Nature Metallic Butterfly Stickers; Spellbinders Mega Label 8; Foam Tape
Size: 4.25" x 5.25" rectangular 

Thursday, April 30, 2015

From Our Hearts: My Last Donation of 40 Cards for Our Troops

And so, it's come to an end as From Our Hearts has decided it's time to close up shop due to both the draw down of our troops and the impending loss of their donated office space as of today, April 30, 2015.  It's been my absolute pleasure and honor to have been a part of this wonderful patriotic cause over the past 5 years!!

As I reflect and tally up all my past contributions which included hand stamped card donations from my friends Eva and Marina, I'm amazed that our cumulative impact totaled whopping 1726 cards!!

  • 2015 Donations = 193 Cards 
  • 2012 Donations = 150 Pens & 184 Cards
  • 2011 Donations = 598 Card & Card Fronts
  • 2010 Donations = 751 Card & Card Fronts + 4500 Envelopes
TOTAL = 1726 Card & Card Fronts; 150 Pens; 4500 Envelopes

And here is my last contribution of just 40 cards as I ran out of time to convert more swap returns into cards.  You can see my dozen patriotic contributions in my previous post and the bulk of 40 cards were from my friend Marina of which you can see below.  Her cards are absolutely adorable!!

When one door closes, another opens as I am grateful to have discovered other worthy causes to contribute handcrafted cards in the future.

Due to the wonderful ladies over at SCS, I'm joining in their monthly card drives as a hostess and contributor for the Ronald McDonald Houses located through out our nation to provide a community where children and their families embrace life and healing (from cancer) with a sense of hope, enthusiasm, courage and joy.

My friend Marina had given me quite a stack of her handmade cards, some of which weren't needed by From Our Hearts due to the themes, so I forwarded them on to other hostesses throughout the US since our group is spotlighting a different RMH throughout the US each month.  

Pasadena Ronald McDonald House 
763 South Pasadena Avenue
Pasadena, CA 91105

2015 Donations = 20 Cards from Marina

I have chosen to adopt the location in Pasadena to donate cards that I create and collect from friends throughout the rest of this 2015.

I've lost quite a few family members including my dad recently to cancer, so this along with my continued participation in training and fundraising ($6210 to date) for blood cancers by running half marathons through Team in Training (TNT) / The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society (LLS) are both quite personal for me. If you'd like to check out my run training endeavors, check out my latest TNT fundraising link here.

Go USA!! Go Team!!

Saturday, April 25, 2015

Re-Purposing Handmade Scrapbook Swap Returns into Patriotic Cards

With From Our Hearts closing, I'm hoping to send out as many more cards as I can for their last card call which is for Father's Day and Patriotic cards.  I created a bunch of Father's Day cards for my previous shipment, so this time, I've decided to tackle the Patriotic theme by making use of the large bounty of Patriotic swap returns that was intended for scrapbook pages.

I remember hosting several large groups, in addition to participating in post 9-11 themed swaps.  So that means I have tons of amazingly cutesy paper pieced firefighters, shaker box embellishments, photo mats, long borders, etc.

So, here's what I've created by just using cardstock, pp scraps and these themed stamps as these are the only patriotic stamps I own. Ink I used was SU Not Quite Navy.  In some of these, I wish I had my gold EP and heat gun with me.

1.  Starting off with one of my two favorites.  This started off using a long 12 x 2 inch matted border. The gal was pretty darn creative with using skinny border stickers, skinny cardstock strips and punchies for her own embellished page border.  I decided to cut off one end to use as a vertical left border on my stamped card, so got two cards out of this border.  I added the bling which was yet another swap goodie.  2 swapped items used.
  • Embellished 12 inch border
  • Bling (Baggie of decorative embellishments was a category in the 9-11 swap I hosted)

2. This next one is tied as my favorite!!! I wanna keep this one for awhile! I provided the mustard colored folding card that I thought made everything else pop, and stamped the Love, Peace, Freedom. 2 swapped items used.
  • Paper Pieced Shaker embellishment set of the firecrackers.  I could kiss the gal that created this work of art.  It's so detailed and well designed! 
  • Scallop Square Punch Art Journaling Mat (I'm still friends with the gal that made this. I'll show her this card; wonder if she'll remember making this back in 2004-2005?)

3. This one, I combined two handmade embellishments onto a triple matted journaling mat by placing it on a white folding card. Stamped sentiment words were split up since I didn't have room otherwise. 3 swapped items used.
If I could redo it, I would have place the phrases more towards the bottom right corner, but maybe the entire card's symmetry would have been off.  Wish I had my stamp ma jig with me (no I'm not gonna buy the MISTI, no more expensive tools for me lol).   
  • Journaling mat - white cs on red cs on white star/blue pp. 
  • Embellished die cut stars on red cs. 
  • Embellished Shaker box using two die cut stars, wire and beads. 

4. These next two cards were made using a set of 6 serendipity squares from the same gal who incorporated the now retired SU Stars & Swirls set.  In one, I just added a piece of red card stock that was already torn and a piece of scrap metallic ribbon, and the other, I popped an embellished tag on top.  On both, I used same sentiment stamp in different placement as space allowed.  2 swapped items used.
  • 6 Serendipity Squares
  • Embellished Tag

5. These next two cards was inspired by set of US flag embellished tags.  I cut into full sheets of coordinating themed paper for the background before laying the tag down. Yup! Those skinny strips of scalloped solid red card stock were scraps.  Just cut it down the middle and I had two instant accents for this card. I also added larger star/heart punchies and stamped my sentiment on the flag stripes. 3 swapped items used.
  • Embellished flag Manilla Office Tags
  • Star and Heart Punchies
  • Themed Patterned Paper 

6. I tried to emulate the design of my previous card using a different embellished border.  I love the way this gal "strung" her star punchies on a softly colored border.  I trimmed one side of her matted border with pinking sheers to add interest since the colors are a bit pale for my current needs.  Tried to jazz it up with the star brads and themed USA ribbon, both of which are also swap returns. 4 swapped items used.
  • Embellished 12 inch border
  • Silver Star brads Bling 
  • Themed USA ribbon 
  • Themed Patterned Paper

7. This next one uses a stamped embellished tag I made using just the script portion of the SU God Bless America Limited Edition stamp.  I paired it up with another embellished tag made by someone else and matted it on a scrap piece of SU Night of Navy cs. 2 swapped items used.
  • Stamped themed tag (I made this!) 
  • Embellished Die Cut Tag

8. All I did was provide the the Brilliant Blue folding cardstock on this next one and the stamped star shaped I Pledge of Allegiance image.  2 swapped items used.
  • Stamped "God Bless America" with star eyelet embellished matted square
  • Set of 3 embellished red die cut tags

This was fun to create out of this particular themed swap returns because it was designed so that the returns would be, in essence, a full kit with everything you would need for a few matching pages.  Instead, I created, in many instances, duplicates of the same card designs shared above.

Re-purposing swap returns is giving me such satisfaction since I'm wasting nothing and it's going to a great cause.

I'll be at this task for months due to the quantity and variety of themes that I have in swap returns. If you have any worthy causes that would welcome donated handmade cards, please leave your suggestions in the comment section.  Thank you!! 


All Cards 
Stamps: Stampendous "Love, Peace, Freedom"; PSX Script "United We Stand"; Printworks Handwritten "United We Stand"; My Sentiments Exactly Pledge of Allegiance Star; SU Limited Edition God Bless America 
Ink: SU Night of Navy

Thursday, April 23, 2015

#TBT #ThrowbackThursday #StampinUp - Sharing my older SU Demo Cards 9 of 9 - Honing in on my personal creative style

Finally coming to a close here with sharing of my old SU creations.

These next two were my contributions to a SU Demo Only swap that I probably hosted, which is how I amassed close to 1700 card fronts to eventually donate to From Our Hearts to forward to our troops overseas.

I so wish I had a better image file for this card.  It was so elegant in real life with the fold, addition of the jute twine that I finished off with a wooden button (not pictured here because this was a preliminary picture I took of my card), and the chalk pencils I used to color in the images of the children and dog.  SU had just introduced their set of chalk pencils at this time. This was light years before Copics burst onto the scene. I really loved the combination of More Mustard, Barely Banana with a hint of Real Red for a non traditional wintery theme.

This next card, which was also for another SU Demo Only Swap, was probably one of my last submissions as a participant because I was mainly hosting frequent Demo Only swaps in my hey day. It was hard, for me, to create large quantities of an original design, while creating and kitting for home demos and my monthly stamp camps at my 12 hour crops, hand trimming and mounting all sets for my customers, and keeping up with timely communication online with all my swap participants while holding down a full time job.  My current 42 old self is in disbelief of my early 30's energy!

Here I was heavy into the office emphemeral style as I begin to really settle into my preferred creative style that will show up in all of my future work, especially my layouts which you can see here at my gallery. On SCS, I mainly share my cards.  I was soo eager to incorporate staples!! Oh soo edgy! Again, I used the chalk pencils to color in the apples and let the toile image of the Serenity background stamp as is for that vintage canning label effect.

Looking back on this card now, I think I'd rearrange the elements differently so that it's not so awkward looking with being top heavy.   I remember being so dissatisfied with it at the time but I had to run with it since I had a deadline and multiple projects looming.  I'll tackle this one in the next coming weeks to give it a much deserved face lift.

Thanks for going down my Stampin' Up! memory lane with me the past couple of Thursdays.  I just ordered some new SU upon the announcement of the new retiring list, so I'm anxious to get inky soon with new (to me) images.


"Snow is Falling" Card
Paper: SU Smooth White CS; SU Barely Banana; SU More Mustard; SU Real Red
Stamps: SU Winter is Calling
Ink: SU Black Ink 
Embellishments: Jute Twine
Tools: SU Chalk Pencils; 1/8" Handheld Hole Punch
Size: 4.25" x 5.25" rectangular 

"Apple of My Eye" Card
Paper: SU Kraft CS; SU Night of Navy; SU Really Rust
Stamps: SU Serenity; SU Farm Fresh
Ink: SU Night of Navy 
Embellishments: SU Chalk Pencils; Staples
Size: 4.25" x 5.25" rectangular 

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