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Bloom Where You are Planted April 3, 2016

Posted by Danielle in Crafts.
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This card is for the Imagine That! digis by Kris Facebook DT call.

For this card, I started with some Desert Storm Kraft cardstock.  I love how it embosses, and I think it’s a fantastic neutral card base that works for many different styles.

The image is Leesa’s Tulip, and I think she is perfect for Spring!  Not to say that I would know what spring is right now since we had snow today and are forecast to have more tomorrow – hoping none of it sticks!  She is printed on Neenah Solar White 80# cardstock and colored with the following Copic markers: 110, E07, E30, E31, E50, E55, E57, N0, N2, R08, R20, RV0000, RV00, RV02, RV04, RV06, YG13, and YG21.  Then, I used Sizzix Decorative Frames dies to cut the image, a frame, and a mat.  The frame is cut from some scrap paper from my stash, and the bottom mat is cut from green glitter paper.  I used some foam tape to pop up the cute little sentiment.

If you’re interested in applying for Kris’s Facebook Design Team, you can find the details here.

Winter Whites January 23, 2016

Posted by Danielle in Crafts.
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Hello, everyone!  I hope you are having a wonderful weekend!  Just a reminder: the January Winter Whites challenge is going to be ending soon, so get your creations entered… The challenge can be found over on the Paper Temptress Facebook page here.

Gentle Baby

For this card, I started out with a card base of Neenah Solar White covered with an embossed sheet of my favorite vellum, the heavyweight vellum.  It embosses like a dream!  The beautiful image itself (Gentle Baby) can be found at A Day for Daisies.  The image is printed on Cryogen White cardstock, a beautiful off-white shimmery cardstock, and then I tore the edge around the image before adhering it down to the vellum.  It is colored using Copic markers in the following colors:  B26, B39, B41, B45, BG10, BG45, C1, C2, C4, C6, E00, E11, E13, E27, E29, E79, R02, and Y000.

Here are the details for entering the contest on the Paper Temptress Facebook page:

Theme – Winter Whites – Cardstock/Papers must be in WHITES. Images can be colored
Deadline – Feburary 1st @ 9:00PM EST


Paper Temptress: $20.00 gift certificate to one winner. If you use a Paper Temptress card stock and you are the winner, you will receive an extra $10.00 gift certificate. You must list the card stock used. Cryogen White is excluded.
A Day for Daises: $12.00 gift card
The Stamping Boutique/Glitterbabe’s: The winner will receive 2 images of their choice. PLEASE NOTE: if the winner uses a STAMPING BOUTIQUE or GLITTERBABE image they will receive 1 extra image of their choice making a total of 3 images.
Oozak – $10.00 gift certificate to one winner

– 2 submission limit per person
– Must follow the monthly theme
-Post your entry in the photo album

Hello, Pumpkin! September 29, 2015

Posted by Danielle in Crafts.
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Life’s been crazy around here lately, so my mojo has been on hiatus.  I hope it comes back soon – and in full force!  This little girl was too cute, and I am happy with how this flip it card turned out for From the Heart’s progressive challenge.


For this card, I used Stephanie Barnard’s Ornate Flip It’s #2 Card die, and I cut it out of 130 pound Richeson watercolor paper, which I love because it is super heavy.  It makes the card flip with ease. I cut out the adorable image of the Pumpkin Patch Girl using my circle Spellbinders die after coloring her with the following Copic markers:  B000, B32, B41, B45, E00, E04, E08, E11, E19, E29, E49, E50, G20, YG61, YG63, YR02, YR04, and YR09.


The designer paper, which I cut using the same dies as previously mentioned, are from the K&Company Sleepy Tree paper pack.  I think they are perfect for a Fall card.

Happy Snowman August 19, 2015

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This is for the August From the Heart progressive challenge.


For this card, I started out using the image printed on Bazzill cardstock, and I colored it in using Copic markers.  I know I usually write down the colors I use, but I wasn’t at home when I colored this, and I don’t remember which markers I used.  Sorry!  The card base is using cardstock from the K&Company Sleepy Tree paper pack.  I really liked the little Christmas trees with smiley faces.  The sentiment is from the digital image collection as well, and both the image and sentiment are inked using Distress inks.  The image has Shabby Shutters, Forest Moss, and Vintage Photo around it, and the sentiment uses only Vintage Photo.  I also rounded the right side of the card using a half inch corner chomper.

My First Shaker Card July 11, 2015

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Hello, everyone!  I couldn’t resist this stamp set – it was just too cute and I had to have it.  It’s one of the small Lawn Fawn sets called Sweet Smiles, and I think it’s a very versatile set since you can use those adorable faces with so many other stamp sets.  It does come with a die set, but I didn’t purchase that.


For this card, I started out using Cryogen Iridescent 89# cardstock for the base and the front panel.  It gives the card a subtle shimmer, which I like.  All coloring is done using Copic markers: B29, G14, R22, R24, R27, RV14, T1, T3, T5, V25, Y08, and YR07.  I stamped the gumball machine twice and colored the front panel of the machine before cutting out the glass container part with a craft knife.  I layered the second piece of Cryogen cardstock behind it and lined up the images.  There is a piece of acetate from some packaging that I used for the clear front of the card.  The front panel and the pennant are popped up using dimensional adhesive.  I cut a piece of some absolutely gorgeous Vintage Silver Lustre Text weight cardstock to fit behind the machine.  This paper is so beautiful.  It looks like it has very fine brush strokes in it, and I love the texture and shine it adds to a project.  I had to die cut a circle in it so that the colored gumballs on the back piece of Cryogen would show through to the front of the card.

Loving the Gelli Plate May 16, 2015

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For this card, I used my Gelli Plate to transfer designs onto packing tape in order to create a background for my card.  The background is created using acrylic paints, stamps, and household implements such as bottle caps and Q-tips.  After the print is lifted, I used gold mica powder to fill in the “blank” spaces and get rid of the sticky part of the tape.  Then, I wrapped the pieces around the Neenah Solar White cardstock and adhered them well with Red Line tape.  Because the tape is wrapped around the card base, I suggest using a sturdy base, otherwise it will be more difficult to get the beautiful tape to lie flat.


I used some Elizabeth Craft Designs stickers on Cryogen cardstock and colored them in with Spectrum Noir markers and Copics.  The edges are inked with Weathered Wood Distress Ink, and the birds have Tulip heat set gems on them.

Happy Gardener April 18, 2015

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I really enjoyed making this card.  I think it’s very Spring-y and great for this time of year.


For this card, I used some pink designer paper from my stash on top of the card base.  The image itself is one I got from a friend many years ago.  I believe it is stamped on Neenah Solar White 80# cardstock with Memento Tuxedo Black ink.  I cut out the image using a Spellbinders die and then mounted it onto one of the gorgeous Hambly overlays.  The flower in the corner is cut and embossed from Earthstone from the Classic Linen Package using a Sizzix Embosslits.  If you’ve never had a chance to play with the Linen paper line, give it a try – it is absolutely beautiful paper with a super subtle texture.

Spectrum Noir Markers and Copic Markers April 14, 2015

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Well, I jumped on the bandwagon and bought a set of the Spectrum Noir markers.  They are marketed as a craft grade alcohol ink marker.  I was mildly interested in these markers when they originally came out, but obviously it has taken me a few years since to actually get a set of my own.  Guess that’s a good thing, since they have definitely made some improvements to the original version of the markers.

I have been using Copic markers for years now, and I got my toes wet in the alcohol ink marker arena by starting out with a set of Neopiko 2 markers. I liked that they were virtually odorless (unlike the Prismacolor markers), and I really enjoyed having the brush nib – the downside is that the brush nibs are a much lower quality than the Copic markers, and by the time the markers were running out of ink, quite a few of the brush tips were shot.  I got my set probably 6 or 7 years ago and paid around $100 for the set of 72.

My delight with the brush nib led me to want to try the Copic markers.  I took a so-called Copic class through Archivers before they declared bankruptcy.  Honestly, I didn’t learn much in the class itself, and some misinformation was actually given out about the markers, but I did discover that I definitely wanted to invest in Copics.  I have Original, Sketch, Ciao, and one wide marker (which I got as part of the Copic Certification class and don’t use).  Most of the markers I own are Sketch markers, which are my favorite.

Here is a comparison of something I’ve colored using my markers where I tried to match the SN and Copic marker colors:


Comparison using comparable colors to blend the same image

The stamp I used is one I stamped while at a friend’s house – I’m guessing it is an older Stampin’ Up stamp, but I’m not sure.  The Copic version is on the left, the Spectrum Noir version is on the right.


Crafter’s Companion recommended blending families

This next swatch is the Crafter’s Companion recommended blending families that are on the basic 72 set (the 6 marker packs).  I couldn’t complete the one cool gray family because I received a duplicate marker in that set (I got 2 IG6 markers and no IG10).  I contacted Crafter’s Companion last week, and they are supposed to be sending me out a replacement IG10 marker and TN2 marker, which had a cracked gray part of the marker that holds the bullet nib.  Personally, I do not care for some of the recommended color blending families, and I found some of them very difficult to blend – some that I thought did not work for me include both purple blends, the FS6, PP1, EB2 blend in Pale Hues, PP3, PP5, DR3 in Pinks, and TB1, TB2, TB9 in Blues.  The remainder seemed to blend pretty well for me.


Completed Spectrum Noir color chart

This is the blank chart I colored in with the Spectrum Noir markers.  You can find it on the Crafter’s Companion website under downloads.  While this chart is very helpful, I’m still confused as to whether or not there is a reason for the letter/number system of color labeling.  Perhaps there is a better explanation on one of their instructional DVDs, but I really don’t want to have to buy a DVD to learn how to use the markers.  The colors in the different color families do not appear to guarantee that they will blend will together, and I really had to check with a few colors to make sure I did not color the wrong rectangles since the colors are almost identical.  In particular, this happened when I was coloring TB5 and TB6; BG8, BG9, and BG10; CT2 and CT3; and JG1 and JG2.  However, because these markers are sold in sets, I either have to purchase them or go without the set.  Copic markers also have a number of shades that are very similar, but at least if I purchase them as open stock, I do not have to buy the colors that seem to be duplicates.


Here is another swatch sheet I made using some different variations for skin tones I found online on the Crafter’s Companion website.  They seemed to blend quite well together, and I thought this would be handy to have around.

Overall, I have been generally happy with the Spectrum Noir markers. I  do have to remind myself that I purchased them to travel with and to share, mostly because they are at a much lower price point than the Copics, but in a sense you do get what you pay for.  I have to be much more careful about the cardstock I use with the Spectrum Noir markers or I get an excessive amount of bleeding when I use them.  I also (in general) have to lay down quite a bit more ink to get the Spectrum Noir markers to blend than I do with the Copic markers – part of this is probably experience-based since I have much more experience using my Copics, but it may also be something about the way the markers work.  I still prefer the brush nib on the Sketch and Ciao markers by far over the bullet nib on the Spectrum Noir markers.  I know that Crafter’s Companion is now selling a brush nib for their markers, but they are quite pricey and based on the experience I have had with the bullet nibs on the markers, I’m not convinced that the brush nibs will hold up to use.  I say that because, right out of the box, there is a difference in the bullet nibs on many of the markers.  Some of them are nice and firm, giving a great fine line.  Other nibs are much more soft and cannot produce a fine line.  Having used Copics with both the brush and bullet nibs, I have rarely had to replace the brush nib and never had to replace a bullet nib so far.

Another issue I’ve had with the Spectrum Noir markers is that many of them have poorly stamped names on the end caps, and they are not identified on the barrel at all.  Now I realize that the Ciao markers are only identified on the barrel of the marker, not the caps, but a big convenience factor for the Sketch and Original markers is that the caps and barrel are labeled.  It definitely helps to have all parts labeled if I’ve got a bunch of markers out for use!  I contacted Crafter’s Companion, and the customer service rep stated that the marker names should not come off; I didn’t even try scratching the label off for fear that it would actually come off!  I wound up putting a coat of Glossy Accents on the ends of the caps for good measure.  Better safe than sorry, in my opinion.

The most annoying issue i have had with the Spectrum Noir markers is that a number of them come apart at the barrel when I try to remove the cap.  Since I did test out the markers soon after purchase, it wasn’t due to mishandling on my part.  Most of the markers functioned fine, and they were all nice and juicy.  I have another question in to customer service and have yet to receive an answer as to whether or not I can use glue to secure the gray part to the black barrel with some kind of glue or not.  The reason this makes me question the overall quality of the marker is because they are marketed as refillable – but I don’t want to deal with the markers coming apart at the barrel.  If they start coming apart within the first week of light use, what will they be like in a month or a year?  Hopefully, there is a fix for the issue.  Knock on wood, I have never had this happen to any of my Copic markers before.

All in all, the Spectrum Noir markers are a good jumping off point for getting started with alcohol-based markers.  I’m not happy with some aspects of them, but they are comfortable to hold and use.  They are refillable, and the nibs are replaceable.  They don’t stink or give me headaches, and I’m glad to have a set of alcohol markers I can carry around with me and not worry as much about replacement cost.  But Copic markers will remain my favorite alcohol-based markers to use at this point.

ETA (6/19/2015): I have now been able to find Spectrum Noir markers being sold individually at many retailers, including Crafter’s Companion.

Always Love You February 23, 2015

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Well, between frigid temperatures and other household woes, I wanted to create something spring-y and fun to lighten the mood!  This adorable chickie by From the Heart Stamps fit the bill perfectly.


What a fun card to create… I started out with the image printed onto Cryogen cardstock.  Then, I used a combination of Portfolio and Prismacolor watercolor pencils to color the image.  I added some Wink of Stella clear pen to the top of the bird’s eyelids and to the flower petals, as well as to the pearl necklace which I left white.  I used some Fired Brick distress ink around the edges, and I trimmed it with some twine colored with an RV19 Copic marker.  The background is from the Basic Grey 6×6 paper pad called Highline.  This paper pack is full of fun geometric designs, and it was hard to choose one for the background of this card, but I thought these bright colors played well with the image.

I will be entering this in the FTHS progressive challenge.

Wild About You Valentine February 7, 2015

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For today’s project, I’m sharing a Valentine’s Day card that I made for my nephew.  He loves getting mail, so I know he’ll appreciate getting this.


For this card, I started out with some purple cardstock from my stash and embossed it using the new Anna Griffin embossing folders – the ones where you can change out the sentiments.  Obviously, this card has a digital image, one of the Melonheadz freebies, where the sentiment would go, so I just embossed the frame, not the sentiment this time around.  The image is printed on Cryogen, colored with Copic and Distress markers, and matted onto black Basis cardstock.