Tuesday, December 23, 2008
Our younger daughter lives in Texas and has worked with and loved horses since she was old enough to walk. She won't be home for Christmas so this is the card I made for her. (My son's comment on this card? "Best one yet, Mom." -- I'm thinking he wants me to bake him a batch of cookies). Below is the inside of the card with a present (good wishes) under the tree from every family member.
The simple outside gives no indication of what she will find when she opens the card. Merry Christmas, Rikke! And, now I an on "elf" duty and must work on many other projects with the deadline of Christmas! I wish everyone and all their fur babies a blessed Christmas and a Happy New Year. Until next time, tah, tah.
After posting "Fur Babies' Christmas" my friend, Donna, from afar sent me an e-mail:
"Martha, I was all set to leave my first comment on a blog and then I realized that I have to have an account, etc. and I gave up so here's my comment: Okay, Martha what about my house: cats, dogs, horse and parrots - to name a few. Adorable cards. You never cease to amaze me!" Well, you know how I like challenges so here is the card on its way to Donna's family. I also know that she has a desert tortoise that she didn't mention so that is why there is a turtle among the crowd around the Christmas tree. My son's comment? You can guess, "Wow, Mom, that's kind of busy." Any family with a group of animals such as this is surely busy too, don't you think?
Wednesday, December 17, 2008
Being fairly new to cyberspace, blogging, and catch-phrases, I recently learned that the moniker "fur babies" refers to all those loving cats and dogs that we pamper and adore. At my house, "Mr. Lucky" is no exception. An 80 lb Weineramer, he is adoring and when he looks at you with those soft brown doe-like eyes, he pretty much has his say and his way. He's always underfoot and the other night he was just there, underfoot, in my studio. It occurred to me that fur babies should have Christmas cards to share with their owners so, off another tangent I go instead of staying on task and making my traditional mail-out Christmas cards. "A Jolly Christmas" (Museum of Modern Rubber) it will certainly be. One card creation has grown to six with a few more on the way. Each card is distinct and personalized as best as I could from the standard Sizzix cat and dog dies.
Izzy and Duffy are little Scotty dogs. This is the die cut I started with --
it was modified to look like this. The ears were created with a tree punch.
Then I added the "beards" using an angel wing punch.
My friend, Joyce, when I last visited her, had three cats. I had her card all done when I received an e-mail telling me about the adoption of "Bart" – it was a real challenge to find room for one more cat and one more present on her card. The Sizzix tree is embossed with cuttlebug, chalked and edged with a Memories ink pad.
And what about Bob?
Friday, December 12, 2008
This week's House Mouse challenge "Let it Snow," for me, brings back many happy memories of the cold weather and snow fun as a child. Growing up in snow country, the most important thing to check for when it began snowing was to see if the snow could pack and roll to form big balls to make a snowman. And so, I fashioned these little house mouse guys to frolick in the meadow with plans to make a snowman. As you will note, there is one a little more serious about the job at hand. I hope some of you out there have an opportunity to play in the snow this winter. As for me, all I can do is dream about a "White Christmas."
Snowflake punch: Emagination
Phrase: Aunty Amy (Embossing Arts)
RS Snowflakes (background) Hero Arts
Snowflake foreground: Cuttlebug
Snowballs: one from felt, others mottled w/embossing powder and soft edged w/Memories Midnight Blue
Tuesday, December 9, 2008
I've always been a late bloomer - kinda like the song "Born Too Late..." My mother was expecting me in December and I waited until January and I guess that's been the theme all my life. All to say, that I am still punching out fall colored leaves when all the rest of the crafting world is making Christmas or Valentine Cards. My drawer full of mice is still on my work bench so I couldn't resist making this one before getting busy on Christmas (and my laundry). The tree scene by Darcie is colored with watercolor pencils and the opening is cut out to make a window for the mouse to be suspended in (the hand is sandwiched between the layers) The punched leaves are affixed to the inside of the opening - the border (Hawaiian Quilt block) is by RSP - Honolulu. My son's comment on this one? "Best one Yet, Mom."
Sizzix dove, flower
RS: Stamps Happen
Fern Punch: Emagination
Wednesday, December 3, 2008
The House Mouse Friends challenge of the week: Glitter/Glitz. Go take a look at the design team's work -- they truly know how to use Glitter and Glitz. When I think of glitter, I think of twinkle, and twinkle means stars! And when I saw the House Mouse image on the design team member, Judith's card, I knew I had to reach for the stars for this challenge and so I put my "Hyper Mouse" to task once again. The phrase from my friend Sarah by G-Rated seemed just right for a star studded sky. The stars are Sizzix die cuts from metallic card stock and then in turn embossed with cuttlebug folders with sparkle provided by glitter glues and Art Institute Glitter. The silver star was tapped with top boss and embossed with one of my favorite powders: Silver Trout. McGill punches with glittered accents add the last bit of sparkle. The metallics and glitters are not very well portrayed in this scan -- perhaps I should try taking photos of my cards? My son has not given his approval of this card but I already know what he will say (because he likes the meals I cook for him). Think on these things...whatever is true, noble, right, pure, lovely, admirable, excellent, praiseworthy. Until my next post, tah tah.
Monday, December 1, 2008
Thursday, November 27, 2008
Polka Dots! That's what the House Mouse Challenge was for the week. Take the link to see what the Design Team has done with this theme. Because I made a Funky Pink Christmas card for my darling little granddaughter -- I could do no less for my wonderful grandson. This card is for him as he has a real sweet tooth. Perhaps I'll sneak him a real candy cane when his Mom isn't looking. I made the polka dot background with a pencil eraser, top boss, and gold embossing powder. "Santa's Helper" is by my hand. The House Mouse image "Little Candy Striper" is colored with Prismacolor Markers I sneaked out of my son's studio. Thank you for coming by to look -- please take a moment to tell me what you think.
Tuesday, November 25, 2008
I am so excited to find yet another challenge blog spot -- this one requires the use of a Penny Black image. Another one of my favs! -- and I probably have a drawer full of these too. This week's challenge was to use untraditional colors to make a funky card. Here are the specifics on the challenge and a link for you to see some awesome creations by the Design Team.
I immediately thought of my dear little granddaughter who insists on everything -- I mean everything -- being pink from her shoes to her lunchbox. So I've made this for her. The trees are by Sizzix, the pink swirly "snow" and the frame is by cuttlebug, Penny Black's "Ladies Divine", and the mailbox - Good Stamps Stamp Goods are edited to suit the purpose and the phrase is by my hand. Get those letters off to Santa -- time's a wasting!
Sunday, November 23, 2008
Here is my interpretation of a sketch challenge No. SK111508 at Papercraft Planet -- an online community for papercrafters. There are lots of groups to join there so go take a look and join in and share the fun. This card required me to think -- and late at night I'm at my best especially while the washing machine is running, because it offers me an open flat surface when my studio work table doesn't offer any. LOL. The stamping on the background of this card is the Stampendous texture cube stamped with Memories Brown, and edged (believe it or not) w/cool blue Prismacolor marker which created a muted edging - not blue at all. Memories Blue ink pad sponging on the phrase panel. All the rest is Sizzix die cuts except for the Emagination punch for the feathery leaves, and Marvy punched oak leaves. The ribbon across the inner rectangle is to repeat the red circles of the apples in the cornucopia. Happy Thanksgiving All!
Saturday, November 22, 2008
This has got to be one of the happiest House Mouse characters around. He's called "Hyper Mouse" and I can see why. Here is another "take" from the Drawer Full of Mice post using the same components. I haven't asked my son about this one yet but I think I like it better and I know my husband is always good for a "that's great -- can you make about 100 of these for my best customers?!" Winter Trees background - All Night Media.
Thursday, November 20, 2008
Since I discovered the House Mouse and Friends challenge spot, I've pulled out the drawer (full of house mouse images -- untouched by ink). This card was "unsolicited" - meaning there was no suggestion for it as a challenge so I made this just for fun. I plan to use it for Thanksgiving greetings to family I will not share a table with next week. When I asked my son for approval, he just nodded his head. I think he was more interested in what's for dinner. He did say he loved the colors and that he couldn't "see anything wrong with it."
Burgundy Card face
Leaf border stamp - Greenbriar (I think this was from Dollar Tree)
Happy Harvest - Embossing Arts
Cuttlebug folder for copper layer
Leaf punch - Marvy
Tuesday, November 18, 2008
Wednesday, November 12, 2008
Oh, I get like that sometimes. Over at the House Mouse Challenge the challenge of the week was to devise a card using bits of junk. All the Design Team did beautiful creations -- nothing at all that looked like junk -- their work is perfect in every respect. For this card, I chose the House Mouse "pure bliss" candy box and did what is fondly called these days, "altered" it to make a place for pack rats to reside and have a box full of treasures ("junk") -- such as rubber bands, safety pins, buttons and bits of ribbon. The heart is to say "I Love Junk" -- and so I do. I've sure got lots of drawers full of it. Thanks for stopping by.
Tuesday, November 11, 2008
A very special word and a very special bond. I am so blessed with great friendships. This card was a serendipity creation with no planning and I am delighted with the results. Sometimes, I think I overwork an idea. I used my very first stamp (the fern) purchased at a State Fair many, many years ago which began my addiction. See Count Your Many Blessings. The Friendship phrase is from Wordsworth. When I received this stamp from an e-bay win, I was certain that I would never be able to use it because it is so large -- but it worked perfectly here. The frame is a sizzix die cut from copper cardstock and the image is Rubber Stampede "Woman in Repose." All components arranged on a slightly tinted 8 1/2 x 11 folded in half card stock. Frame is raised with foam mount for dimension and the rest was simply stamped with Memories black ink giving the slightest bit of blush to the woman's cheeks. Thanks for stopping by.
Saturday, November 8, 2008
Yes, I so know that Halloween is long since over but I must show you this card. It arrived in my mailbox as a great surprise on October 31st. This is certainly no trick but indeed a treat. This card has many things going on -- some I can identify as sizzix, some stickers, hand drawn bats -- plastic bugs, and a little soft webbing overall. I was overwhelmed to receive this spooky creation from my special stamping buddies in Canada -- Ann and Anne. They are a great team and I have had the pleasure of stamping with them on three occasions -- twice at workshops in the woods of Canada, and once in Puyallup, Washington. The card they sent me was the result of their spending a recent week-end together stamping the nights away. I look forward to another time when I can join them in their playtime. Thanks A and A!
Wednesday, November 5, 2008
The rules are:
1. The winner may put the logo on their blog.
2. Put a link to the person who sent you the award.
3. Nominate 5 blogs.
4. Put links to their blogs.
5. Leave a message for your nominees
The hardest part of this "assignment" is picking just five -- but here are just a few of my favorite bloggers and to whom I pass this beautiful award:
Adventures from the Monkey Hut
After my last post and then silence, perhaps you think the wild things got me. No, though I've had somewhat of a "wild time" this past week. I played "house mom" to my great little grandkids, 5 and 11. The best part of staying at their house for 10 days was having lots of playtime with them. We had a couple of great card making sessions and my grandson came up with some good Halloween cards. The little granddaughter, became a black cat manufacturer. I have to give Martha Stewart a great big endorsement here. I own tons and tons of craft punches, but when I reluctantly paid a higher price for one of Martha Stewart's cat punches I was extremely pleased with having done so.
My little 5-year-old granddaughter was able to manipulate this punch with great skill -- it is one of the easiest to use punches I have ever seen. I kid you not, that she sat for an hour straight punching away. In some of the workshops I have conducted, I have had some adults who were unable to use some of the craft punches. Martha S has it figured out! I couldn't wait to go back to Michaels for another one -- this time, a bunny.
Wednesday, October 22, 2008
My challenge for the week. I have just recently discovered that there are many "challenges" available throughout the internet crafting world and have begun participating in some. This week, however, I created my own challenge. The challenge was to make an item for our trick or treaters. These bookmarks are the result of that challenge. They are created from an original pen and ink drawing that my son, Dain, made into a rubber stamp. I think this is a good exchange for chocolate, don't you? I'll keep the chocolate for myself and the trick or treaters can go home and read "Where the Wild Things Are" by Maurice Sendak (one of my all time favorites), and use the monster bookmark to keep their places. Dain will also be selling these at a local Art Festival and Animal Adoption and Wellness Fair that is being held locally this week-end in support of Animal rescue and Welfare organizations. If you live in the Phoenix area, and are interested in this event, go here.
Monday, October 20, 2008
Ahh, I see that I scanned this one a little crooked but you get the idea. There was no stamping involved in making this card but it is an enjoyable project that can be accomplished while relaxing in front of the TV. It was created from a wallpaper border I found at the Dollar Tree. The border was cut to fit on a red card blank. I then cut the basket and several apples from a duplicate image to add on top of the original image with dimensional tape. Too bad that it doesn't show the dimension here. Quickand Easy and not a rotten apple among them.
Sunday, October 19, 2008
Another fabulous House Mouse challenge -- I couldn't resist. I rushed home from a trip to see what I could conjur. The "Grape Dreams" Santa Rosa house mouse stamp was ready made for this challenge. This is the second card I made because I wasn't satisfied with the first. I hope you enjoy it. I have tons of paper (well, who doesn't?) and I never use it -- so I added to this challenge that I must use some patterned paper. I also did something else differently in the designing process. I usually build from the card blank up -- this time, I created the design from the top down. I think I've finally got it!
Wednesday, October 8, 2008
Another House Mouse challenge based on a Halloween theme or colors. This challenge was a test for me without having any House Mouse Halloween stamps. But here you see that House Mouse antics abound in the pumpkin patch. My friend, Sizzix, die cut all the pumpkins – but, after putting in the shading with watercolor pencils, it was a layering "nightmare". The background on this 8 1/2" x 5 1/2" card was created with a PSX tree stamp and a sponged grey/blue sky compliments of Brilliance Lightning Black and some blue hues from a Big and Juicy pad. Other credits: HM (Santa Rosa), and Family Treasure punch for the bats. I'm a little batty myself after putting this romp together, but batty is fun! Oh, yes, the words are by me.
Tuesday, October 7, 2008
Count Your Many Blessings
. . . name them one by one. I've never followed a "recipe" or card sketch for a card before so this was a new experience. I had several more layers ready to adhere to this card and after my son's critique, I simplified it. He likes it better and so do I. Sizzix did a nice job of cutting the oak leaves and the maple leaf. Cuttlebug embossed the maple leaf used as an under piece to the two oak leaves. The oak leaves are stamped with lot of little words (PSX), a little heart (Hampton Arts), and my very first stamp – a fern stamp (maker unknown but known how I got it) my DH purchased the fern stamp for me at the State Fair many years ago (oh, little did he know what he was doing….). The phrase "Count Your Many Blessings" is from Stampendous. The bottom Oak Leaf is attached but I left the top leaf to move freely for interaction. It is only connected to the card with the raffia tie at the stem. The dark green layer under the maple leaf was stamped with a leaf design (Toomuchfun). Talk about too much fun – at the time of this stamp's making, the company was based in East Lansing, Michigan – my home state. Where did I buy this stamp? Michigan? – Nahh, that would have been too easy. I found it at an art store in San Francisco during one of my working trips there. Are we having too much fun? Not yet…..and I've got lots and lots of blessings to count.
Monday, October 6, 2008
Have I mentioned that I love Sizzix? This card has a Sizzix jelly frame embossed with a Cuttlebug embossing folder and then tapped with Memories sepia ink. Kinda looks like imitation dyed leather huh? This is a left folded card blank that was stamped with the bare tree (PSX ) before applying with foam mounts, an assembled Skylar (theneonrainbow), -- Skylar's eyes are covered with Crystal Lacquer -- stamped tag "Happy Harvest" (Embossing Arts) tied to frame with raffia strands– and Maple Leaf (Marvy) and Oak Leaf (Family Treasurers). Ahh, I miss PSX and Embossing Arts – thank goodness there are still a "few" stamp makers out there! LOL
Friday, October 3, 2008
And so it seems music makes our little house mousies sing (and dance too). I accepted the challenge to use a House Mouse stamp to create a tag. I am new at this, but I'll try to put the link here. Since I love to stamp, it wasn't hard to take on such a challenge with my drawer full of House Mouse characters. The result you see here was not even close to the first notion I had in my head. I decided to make a large tag – and one that is actually a folded card that will fit inside a biz size envy. I was going to do something with chocolate and worked awhile making a lovely title plate for the word "Sweet" and then I stamped down that first image "Tickling the Ivories" with Amanda, Maxwell, Mudpie, and Monica which I intended to be solely for background support. But that is when a totally new idea evolved! The word "Sweet" was cast aside and I started building on the music theme. I folded up the bottom corner to reveal a flower print paper liner I had glued down and affixed the happy mouse peeking through from the inside. On the folded up tab, I stamped a bunch of words by Fiskars (one stamp) and edged the fold with pink ink. The flower liner dictated that I bring some of those flowers to the outside which was achieved with a Sizzix charm die, a small punch for the centers of the lavender flowers and mini brads to assemble and affix to the card. I had only half the card covered and a lot of white space yet to go and I was out of ideas. I went looking for ribbon – I had no idea that I had the "Music Makes My Heart Sing" ribbon! What a delightful find! Now the rest was easy stamping the word "Music" (source unknown); another mouse – singing? Goodness – there is still white space – stamped the treble clef and note from Rubber Stampede with Memories Sepia, and tapped in a few little hearts from Hampton Art with Memories crimson and colored with water color pencil. Well, folks I think that's it. I am still "Sweet" on House Mouse so there will surely be a time to use that theme. I'm still thinking chocolate!
Wednesday, October 1, 2008
"That looks like a professional card." So says my son, the art critic. And, I guess he is earning that title as he is finishing up his masters in drawing and painting while teaching art core classes at Arizona State University. And this came after he had come home after completing 18 art critques with his students. The card he refers to is to the right and almost doesn't qualify as a stamping project with only the Friendship stamp from Wordsworth being used with a Memories Sepia Pad. I made the medallion while I was traveling for my job, sitting in my hotel room after work. It is a sectional piece - cut pie shapes from thin foam sheets and cover with pretty papers and assemble by gluing all on cardstock. The centerpiece is a button (from DollarTree). The layer is a textured piece of lightweight cardstock and because of the texture, the impression from the stamp was softened (which I actually think is very effective here). The panel was cut along the edges with a Fiskars paper edger and affixed to an 8 1/2 x 11 white card stock piece folded in half. This card, since is is deemed "professional" is destined for my friend who just completed her Masters degree in Christian Counseling at the age of 67. Professional card -- for a professional -- right? Much congratulations to my dear friend, Donna!
Tuesday, September 30, 2008
This card was a lot of fun to make. It does require a few layers but I like the effect of the thin green and black borders. I designed it for my grandson – Count Dracula is a magnet.
Stamps Used: Stampendous Marble Texture Cube;Graveyard (unmounted – unknown);Peddlar’s Pack – Count Dracula
Count Dracula is stamped with Memories Black stamp pad and colored with watercolors and fine brush. Put purple card stock behind the cutout and laminate. Cut out again leaving a margin of purple. Adhere to magnet material and cut out again. Leave Count Dracula free by slipping him between the vellum and the card stock image so that he can be removed and used as a magnet.
Got Java? Here’s a simple card idea using the Monkey Hospitality Stamp listed as a companion on theneonrainbow.etsy.com
Forest Green Card blank, stamp Psychedelic Background (Embossing Arts) on card face with Memories Black ink pad. Stamp Monkey Hospitality (theneonrainbow) on white cardstock, color with watercolors and a fine brush only the monkey and the coffee cup and steam. Cut out monkey image with a circle punch or circle cutter. Layers of copper and red cardstock respectively. The corrugated band under all is—you guessed it — compliments of Starbucks! Use a pin or 1/8 inch punch for holes to secure assembly with two square orange brads and affix to cardface. Go have a cup of coffee!
Sunday, September 28, 2008
Pumpkin Head has received more hits on Etsy than Skylar (my son's "first born") so I thought it was time to put this stamp to the task of making a few Halloween cards. Here is our favorite so far and the one that will probably be used for a current swap I am participating in.
Pumpkin Head was stamped with a top boss pad and heat embossed with fine line black embossing powder. He was colored and shaded using watercolor pencils and a fine brush. Cut Pumpkin Head out and assemble with brads ready to go on the card face.
Card face: Orange textured paper over black chromecoat card blank. I Love Sizzix! ZigZag frame from black chromecoat, tombstone, and pumpkin as shown. Purple highlight cut oversize to frame the 3-d pumpkin. Write details on the tombstone and age the edges with a silver stamp pad. Affix all to card face. Pumpkin Head goes on with one foam mount at his waist to allow him to do the twist.
Hope you enjoy the look. You can find the Pumpkin Head stamp at theneonrainbow.etsy.com
Saturday, September 13, 2008
Make Skylar flap his wings. This method takes a little more fussing to make – but my grandson sure loves it. Stamp the Skylar image, color as desired. When cutting out the parts, add a little tab at the top center of Skylar's breast to elevate his head when attaching. Assemble Skylar with brads and eyelets. In this design, Skylar's feet and head are put on his body with brads, and his wings are attached with eyelets. In order to make Skylar flap his wings, punch a very tiny hole in each wing just above where the wings will be attached to the body. Set the wings with eyelets – it is important not to set the eyelets too firmly so that the wings easily move back and forth. Attach a thin elastic cord in the small holes to span from wing to wing after the wings are attached to the body. Then attach a second cord to the center of the cord that spans the wings and let it dangle down. Glue two punched circles on either side of the end of the cord to make it easy to pull. Attach Skylar to card, scrapbook page, or other project with a foam mount on his head only to allow the rest of his body to move freely when the cord is gently pulled.
Before assembling Skylar, you could also laminate for a sturdier version.
Friday, September 12, 2008
Skylar is taking flight. Here is the latest card he appears on and how it was made.
Use a full sheet of cardstock folded in half for card base.
Stamp Skylar, color with watercolor pencils and accent his eyes and beak with crystal lacquer. When dry cut out the stamped image and glue together as desired, in this example, the wings are glued in back of the breast and the head is glued on last to make him in a fixed position.
Make the full moon with a circle template out of yellow cardstock – use an orange ink pad to sponge on shading.
Cut tree branch (use the template below as a guide) out of brown cardstock and distress in the following way
Wad up, smooth out and sponge w/ light brown dye ink pad, repeat and sponge w/darker brown ink pad, repeat again and sponge w/black ink. To reach your desired result, you may want to sponge some more color with another ink tone. Use a Black water color pencil to add the cragginess and roughness of bark on the limb.
Assemble by first putting down the moon, branch second, Skylar third with foam mounts to place him on top of the branch Make sure he is a silhouette against the moon.
A tiny and medium star punch for white stars and a leaf punch. Use glitter glue and glitter to add a little sparkle in the sky.
You can find Skylar here: theneonrainbow.etsy.com
Sunday, September 7, 2008
A natural born unmounted rubber stamp created from one of my son's drawings. We have finally taken flight after some time spent in designing, thinking, and planning. Skylar was our first choice for rubber and then we added some of his "friends". To name a few, all good subjects for Halloween cards, are Frankie, Bones, and Pumpking Head. They are movable if you want them to be by putting them together with brads, or keep in a fixed position by simply gluing their parts together.
This then, announces the "Grand" opening of theneonrainbow.etsy.com. The rubber stamp images there are all unmounted which makes for easier storage and less costs for shipping and handling. We expect to add more images in the near future.
After a recent visit with a stamping friend who inquired about the progress of putting some of my son's designs into rubber stamps, I was again motivated to share these ideas with others. Another motivator and a person I very much admire is a fellow Phoenician, Crafty Chica, aka, Kathy Cano-Murillo. She is an inspiration to me -- she can't possibly be taking time out to sleep at night. I am a night owl, but Kathy has much more to show for those sleepless nights than do I.
Kathy does everything from personally answering e-mails, writing books and articles, to crafting and glittering everything in sight. She just recently developed and debuted her own line of products through Duncan for the Michael's stores which requires personal appearances and travel. But that's still not all -- she can be seen on TV doing craft segments. The reason I know all of this about her is that she sends out a "newsletter" every day with interesting commentary if it is nothing more than sharing a picture of a bin of "personal watermelons" at a local grocery store - which she turns into entertainment.
So, thanks to my inspirors (new made up word, I think) -- the neon rainbow begins to rain rubber. And, my blog is no longer silent.