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Christmas in July July 23, 2016

Posted by Danielle in Crafts.
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Hello!  Well, we’re having a serious heatwave here in the Midwest, so it’s the perfect time for a Christmas in July card…  If you’re caught in the same insane heat as we are, please stay safe!

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For this card, I used one sheet of Neenah Solar White 80# cardstock.  Since this is a top-folding card, I cut it the long way so that I had a piece that was 4.25 x 11″.  Then, I cut the embossed layer of the card to 4 x 5.25″ and embossed it using a snowflake Cuttlebug embossing folder.  The wreath is cut using two Spellbinders scalloped circle dies, and then I created the spirelli design using American Crafts green and white baker’s twine.  The bow is from a scrap of ribbon from my stash.  The idea for this card came from MayMay Helms.

Owl Date Book March 10, 2016

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I want to share a date book I made.  It is inspired by the creating a file folder journal, and the YouTube video I watched that was my original inspiration can be found here.  My date book really doesn’t look much like the original project, but I was looking to create a useful gift, and this is what I came up with.

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The base of the entire book are file folders, cut down and scored as in the video.  The only difference is the last page, which is created separately because after I decided to do a year-long book, I needed one more pocket for December.  The owl is a Spellbinders die cut, the eyes are a scalloped circle punch and two flower Sixxix die cuts.  The little googly eyes are from Hobby Lobby (too bad I didn’t have the larger sized eyes, but I made due with what I had on hand), and the letters are foam ones from a scrapbooking kit I had bought years ago.  All paper is from my stash of scraps, and the inks are a combination of Distress Inks, Memento inks, and VersaMagic inks.

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For January, I wasn’t sure exactly how I would decorate the book.  I chose a floral pattern, which is from a Recollections paper pad, and some Washi tape.  The owl stamps are all foam stamps from Oriental Trading Company, and the branch that most of the owls sit on is from the Hero Arts Owl Christmas clear stamp set.  The months and many of the mini decorating stamps are from a calendar clear stamp set.

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For February, I used a Spellbinders Card Creator die in conjunction with a Pink Paislee clear stamp set and a variety of inks.   The heart paper used to decorate this particular set of pages comes from the K&Company Sleep Tree designer paper pad.  You can see one of the cards (also created from file folders) to write the dates on.  The book is meant to hold dates that don’t change throughout the year, so things like birthdays, anniversaries, etc. so the front and back of the cards is stamped with an area to write (MFT Journal It – Head of the Class stamp set).

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As an educator, March is Reading Month, so I used the reading owl stamp, and although I’m not Irish by blood, I’m Irish by family so I chose to use some St. Patrick’s Day paper from the Sleepy Tree paper pad combined with some plaid from DCWV’s The Countdown Stack.  The mixed media type more grungy stamps you will see throughout the journal are from Stampendous’s Mish Mesh set, as is the stencil used to create the small green dots on the page.

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April’s page consists of some “showers of love.”  The gingham checked paper is another scrap from DCWV’s Baby Boy Stack.  The adorable stamp is one that I got in the January 2016 Unity grab bag.  It is colored with some Crayola colored pencils.

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Since April showers bring May flowers, I chose to use a flowered background paper here.  These papers were both cut using some Sizzix Framelits dies, and the embellishment is a small flourish die (My Favorite Things) that I cut using fun foam backed with Sookwang tape.  I had to cut it using my Big Shot and the Precision Base Plate since it was such a thin, intricate die cut.  I also curled part of the flourish a different way so that it would fit on the smaller paper in its entirety.  The stamps on May’s journaling card are from SEI’s Moravia set, which as some beautiful flowers and leaves in it.

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For June, I used some scrapbook paper I had picked up at Dollar Tree many years ago. It reminds me of Father’s Day barbeques, and I cut it out using the Spellbinders set Diagonal Chevron.

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For July, I used some scraps of patriotic papers.  The stars and polka dots on the white cardstock are Washi tape, and the three chevrons are leftovers from the previous month’s page.

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I had a hard time figuring out what to do with August.  In Michigan, school doesn’t start in August, it starts in September.  There are no major (or minor) holidays in August, and it’s just plain hot and humid most of the time.  I wound up going with some under the sea type scrapbooking paper, which I left just by itself until the last minute.  It was too plain and needed something else.  I wound up using the circle stamp from the Stampendous set as well as tearing some scrapbook paper from my stash to look like water along the bottom, and adding some Washi tape along the top.

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For September, I used the owl holding the apple, and I made a conscious decision to use green ink (I think it was bundled sage) for this particular owl so that the apple was green instead of some other color.  I thought red was a little too bright for this page.  The glasses are Washi tape, and the script is a stamp from the same MFT stamp set that the journaling cards is from.

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The colored papers for this page are from my stash (I think they came from a solid Recollections cardstock pack), and the spider paper is some that I had purchased at Big Lots years ago.  I want to say it is from the Heidi Grace line, but I’m not sure.

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For this page, the paper is again from the Sleepy Tree pack.  The colored papers, I think, are from a solid Recollections cardstock pack.

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For December, I again used scraps from the Sleepy Tree pack, but since they were Christmas trees and the orientation was different, I made them go horizontally.  The background wonky stripe patterned paper is from the same paper pack.

Layered Flower Card October 17, 2015

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Hope everybody is having a wonderful weekend!

I really like how this layered card came out, so I wanted to share it with you.

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For this card, I started out with Neenah Solar White cardstock for both the base of the card and for the colored areas.  I stamped the card using some flowers from Unity’s Best Wishes & Blooms stamp set in Archival ink, and coloring the images with Crayola colored pencils before blending the colors out with baby oil.  This was my first try using baby oil to blend, and I didn’t particularly care for it so I will be going back to using Gamsol to blend my colored pencils in the future because I feel I get a much smoother blend.  I thought it was worth a try though since Gamsol is toxic.  I used the Spellbinders Nestabilities Card Creator Sets A and B to create the different layers. I felt the bright flowers needed an equally bright layer between them, so I chose to use Lemon Yellow from the Treasures line.  It gives the card a little additional texture along with the pop of color.  I wanted to add a sentiment as well, so I used the “hello” stamp from Unity’s Jar of Mixed Sentiments stamp set.

Hello, Pumpkin! September 29, 2015

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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.

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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.

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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.

Birthday Bunny September 5, 2015

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Happy Labor Day weekend, everyone.  Hope that you are able to enjoy it!  Today I am sharing a birthday card.

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For this card, I started out using the adorable bunny on a cake stamp from Unity Stamp Company’s eat ALL the cake stamp set.  I loved the look on the bunny’s face as he tries to peek over his big belly.  The image is stamped using Ranger’s Archival ink onto 135 lb Richeson watercolor paper, and then colored in using Rose Art markers (yes, the super inexpensive kids’ markers) and water.  This is a quick technique for using inexpensive markers to color cards and get a different look.  Scribble the color onto an acrylic block and then use a paint brush and water to “paint” the image and get somewhat of a watercolor look.  The sentiment is from the same kit.  I stamped it on Cryogen Iridescent 89# cardstock.  The background stamp is done in Bahama Blue Memento ink, and then I blended the ink color onto the cardstock.  Both the background stamp and die are by My Favorite Things and are made to look like washi tape.  I matted the image using the Spellbinders Card Creator dies on Cappuccino Sorbet Text, and again onto the card base of Neenah Desert Storm.  The photo doesn’t really pick it up, but I did go around the white space where the “sparkles” are, and I added some clear Wink of Stella so that in real life, the card does have some sparkle to it.

Upcycled Mini Album August 25, 2015

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For anyone who regularly reads my posts, they are usually relatively short.  Just giving fair warning that this particular post will be a long one.  I am stepping out of my comfort zone and starting to make some new types of projects, and this upcycled mini album is one of them.  I am sharing the photos of the album since I am really happy with how it came out.  It was a lot of work, but I can see myself making more in the future.  The inspiration for the album came from Jen of Eve’s You Tube video.  You can see it here.

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This is the cover of the album.  I don’t really want to put anything too dimensional on the cover because it may be stored on a bookshelf, and I don’t want it to be caught on anything.  The cover started out as a cracker box that was about the size of the envelopes I chose to use.  The envelopes were the non-sealing envelopes that were left over from my wedding invitations.  The cracker box is covered using what some cheap wrapping paper was wrapped around – it wasn’t a solid core of cardboard, it was this textured brown bag-type stuff.  I crumpled it up and distressed it using Vintage Photo distress ink, Weathered Wood distress stain, and some homemade shimmer spritz made from brown watercolor and some Dollar Tree eye shadow.

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This is the inside cover and first page.  The cover has a kraft envelope, leftover from a set of note cards.  I decorated it with some chevrons left over from the die cut arrow piece that you will see later on.  Virtually all the patterned papers used in this album are from the Recollections Fashionably Chic paper pad.  I cut a strip from one of the scraps and I put some Viva Decor pearl pen on the ends.  I glued the ends down so that the envelope flap can be tucked inside.  The first page has a scalloped circle cut from Neenah textured cardstock and sprayed with my homemade glimmer mist.  The scalloped circles are actually left over from a project we did for my sister’s wedding last year.

All the envelopes were given more of an aged look by using watered down Vintage Photo distress ink.  Then, I ran all the edges of the envelopes through the ink and let them dry.

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This is the first page with the insert pulled out.  I created a tag using a manila folder and a Spellbinders tag die.  It can be used to house some journaling or a small photo.  The tag is in a pocket that is attached using some eyelets.  The tabs are from Kaiser Krafts Decorative Rectangles die set.

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Here is the next set of pages.  I know the beautiful flourish and edge dies got hidden, but you will see them in later photos.  The envelope is another addition that can be used for journaling or a photo.  I stamped it using some flower stamps from a Unity stamp set, mounted it on some scrap cardstock, and sprayed it with the brown shimmer spray.  Oops, I forgot to include the reverse side of the insert… it is embossed and then the embossing is colored using Scattered Straw distress stain.

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Here is the flip side of the kraft envelope.  I decorated it using one of my favorite Hero Arts stamps called Many Petals.  I stamped it with white pigment ink and colored it using watercolor pencils.  The bees are from a MSE Bee Happy stamp set.  They are colored using Zig Clean Color Real Brush pens, and I can’t recall which stamp set the sentiment came from.  On the opposite side, the bird stamp is from the MSE Love set, and the beautiful corner die is by Anna Griffin.

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This insert is, like the others, manila folder, and the arrows are more “trash” from t he arrow die cut that will be coming up.  As you can see, it was also sprayed with the brown shimmer mist.

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For this page, I used another Anna Griffin die cut out of light green cardstock from my stash.  It is a little difficult to see in the photo, but it is pretty in real life, and it matches the light green outline of the geometric pattern on the patterned paper.  Once again, you see another version of the Hero Arts Many Petals flower.  I’m not sure if you can see it in the photo, but the flower is black heat embossed, painted with Zig Clean Color Real Brush pens and then covered with the clear Wink of Stella pen.  I added some quarter inch double sided tape and covered it with some pink shimmery Dollar Tree mica eye shadow.

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For this page, I used one of the Spellbinders Card Creator dies to cut some fun foam using the Fancy Ribbon Threader die set.  I threaded some translucent silver ribbon through the die cut, and I added some lavender satin ribbon from my stash along the bottom.  The insert for this page is similar to the first insert as far as the creation of the tag and pocket.  This tag is stamped using a musical background stamp from Oriental Trading Company.  The scalloped circle is colored using Vintage Photo Distress ink and stain.

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This insert is plain, just sprayed with the brown shimmer mist… and I used the Anna Griffin die to cut some blue cardstock from my stash to decorate the page.

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Here is the Sizzix arrow die cut where I got the arrows and chevrons used on prior pages.  This is such an intricate die!  I used the Precision Base Plate to cut it with adhesive on the back of it, and it cut perfectly.  The insert is stamped using some flourish stamps from a Sizzix stamp and die set (For the Record #2).

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The scalloped circle makes another appearance… I thought they would be good places to either put photos or journaling.  And here’s the last appearance that the Many Petals stamp shows up.  This is created the same as the last one, only using white embossing powder.

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This page is also showing the ribbon marker on the very left-hand edge of the photo.  It can be used to mark any page.  Here is another beautiful Anna Griffin die cut on this page, as well as the insert for an orange-red envelope from my stash.  These elements are from a stamp set I’ve had in my stash for a really long time.  I’m not sure who made them; they are a clear stamp set.

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This is the decorated part of the envelope, using stamps from that same stamp set.  The sentiment is one I printed out ages ago as well, although I’d hazard a guess that it was a free sentiment from Create for TLC.  The insert on this page is embossed using a notebook embossing folder, then sprayed with the brown shimmer mist and inked using Vintage Photo distress ink.

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Here is a page showing the gorgeous Kaiser Kraft large flourish die.  It is really hard to pick up the sparkle on it, but I did brush the black cardstock with the clear Wink of Stella pen.  The insert has another scalloped circle as well as an Anna Griffin die cut.  I’m not really sure what the die cut is supposed to be, but I tend to think of it as a butterfly.

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This page I decided to leave blank, other than the designer paper.  However, the insert for this page, rather than being from a manila folder, is a piece of cardstock that I used with my Gelli Plate.  I love the metallic sheen that some of the paints have on this particular piece.

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For this page, I used a really old background stamp that I have – no clue who it’s by.  It is a bunch of small circles.  The floral stamps are from the Sweet Girl Sizzix stamp and die set.  The rectangle is one of the pieces of manila folder, sprayed and inked like the other pieces.  I added a doily cut from a Die-Versions die.  The shimmery strip is another piece of quarter inch double-sided tape covered with brown shimmer eye shadow.

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Here is the next page, using the corner Anna Griffin die again.  The rest of the page is blank, other than the black washi tape at the bottom.  The insert in the envelope is stamped using a Heidi Grace clear stamp set, inked using Vintage Photo.  The envelope is from an old stationery set that I had used all the note paper from.

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This is the reverse of the envelope, stamped with another flower stamp from the Heidi Grace stamp set.  For more details on the insert, you can see my post Mini Album Insert.

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Here is the reverse side of the insert.  I used another Anna Griffin die, cut from the geometric patterned paper and inked with Vintage Photo.  The flourish is also an Anna Griffin die, and I thought it really fit perfectly below the little duck.  This stamp is another Unity stamp called Chick in the Rain.  I love this stamp!  I colored it using some really inexpensive Rose Art water-based markers and spritzed it with the Tim Holtz marker spritzer.  The edges are inked in – guess what? Distress Ink Vintage Photo!

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Almost done…. This page has another Die-Versions die, Big Butterfly.  I love so many of the Whispers dies, as you can probably tell, since this is the third one used in this project.  The insert is lined using paper from the Fashionably Chic paper pad and the bow on top is made using Hug Snug seam binding, dyed with just Vintage Photo ink.

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Last insert!  This is pretty simple, stamped with some butterflies (not sure which stamp set) and sprayed with the brown shimmer mist… and the black file folder is from my stash.  I think I got it in a mystery box from MSE, but I could be wrong.  I fussy cut the two blue flowers from the paper pad, and I also added a yellow flower on the inside of the file folder.

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Whew!  Well, I congratulate you if you made it this far!  This is the end of the album, and I have just one final photo to share.

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After completing the album, I decided that it needed a little something else.  The binding is strong.  I used really heavy watercolor paper for the stack the deck binding because I did not want to worry about it not holding up.  I inked the paper, but I wasn’t crazy about how it looked.  You may have noticed the seam binding in between all the pages as you looked at the photos; I took some more seam binding and cut a piece long enough to wrap in between each page.  I colored it using Scattered Straw, Wild Honey, Vintage Photo, Weathered Wood, Pumice Stone, and Old Paper distress stains.

I gifted this album to my sister and brother-in-law, and they loved it. Yay! 🙂

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.

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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.

Snowman Thank You January 12, 2015

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Who could resist this adorable snowman?  I certainly couldn’t!  This is the first month of the 2015 Stamp of the Month challenge.

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This is the Little Snowman stamp by From the Heart Stamps.  And since I have a few thank you notes to get out after the holidays, he and his sentiment are just the thing.  The little guy is printed on Cryogen cardstock and colored with Prismacolor colored pencils.  I blended them out with Gamsol.  Then, I used a Spellbinders die to cut out the image and mounted it on the background, which is stamped with Mowed Lawn Distress Ink and embossed using a Sizzix stamp and embossing set.  The snowman blended in too much with the background, so I also added some Fired Brick Distress Ink around the snowman to play off his red Santa hat.

Heat Embossing August 18, 2014

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Here’s the card I finished late last night for the Stretch Your Stamps 2 class.

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For this technique, I started with a layer of cardstock and covered it with about 3 or 4 layers of metallic embossing powder.  Then, I added a dark purple and a blue embossing powder for the letters and numbers.  The embossing powder melted to a pretty flat sheen, but it did warp the cardstock.  I straightened it out, but it cracked in a couple places.  I actually like the cracks, so I bent the cardstock backward in a few more places to get it to crack more.  I matted that onto an eggplant cardstock, both cut from Spellbinders dies, and mounted the entire thing onto a card base from DCWV.

A Blog Hop with a Difference August 18, 2014

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Hi, I was asked to be part of this blog hop by Karen Stark.  The purpose is for us to get to know each other a little bit better.  I met Karen in a Yahoo Cricut group back in 2008 or 2009.  We got to talking and discovered that we have quite a few of the same interests as well as a similar philosophy on life.  Currently, we co-own a small Yahoo group that we share with a small group of ladies who feel just as passionate about their hobbies and enjoy a spot to talk about family, friends, interests, and life in general.

What am I working on?

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Generally, I am working on creating cards.  This particular card is one I created using the Hot Stuff stamp set by My Favorite Things.  I used some older techniques including masking.  This is more of a typical card for me as far as the style since I usually keep things pretty Clean and Simple (CAS).  I do enjoy learning new things though, so I have been known to enroll in online classes and I’m currently enrolled in the Stretch Your Stamps 2 class, which has been a lot of fun.  I do the occasional scrapbook and 3D project, but I tend to lean toward smaller things where I get the gratification of a completed project sooner.  I have been branching out into new mediums, however, including using modeling paste, stencils, and Gelatos.  But my go-to items for cardmaking are my beloved Copic markers and colored pencils, both normal and watercolor.  That inner child in me just loves to color!  I enjoy sharing my work, and I have been on some Design Teams, which are a great way to meet fellow-crafters.  Currently, I am enjoying my time on The Paper Temptress Design Team.

How does my creative process work?

Great question!  And when I figure it out, I’ll let you know!  Okay, well, really… there’s not any rhyme or reason to my creative process.  Although I do know that I will get burned out in one area and need to recharge by doing something else.  I get inspiration from the things around me, experiences, nature, and definitely from being around kids at work.  If I get too crazed with papercrafting, I will switch my creative outlet to something else like knitting, sewing, or quilting.

How does my work differ from others?

Another good question… and another one that bears some thought.  I guess I would have to say my work differs from others because I’m different and I put my heart into all of my creations – which is why it makes it hard to give some of them away!  And while I know I’m not an artist by trade, I like to think my little works of (he)art are made to be shared.  As my nephew told me in November while opening his birthday gift, “Aunt Danielle, I don’t think I have ever gotten a store bought card from you in my life!”  He’s 8 and adorable.