Thursday, October 25, 2007

Seasons of Joy

Here is another card I recently created using my new "Seasons of Joy" set from SU. I just love, love, love this set!! Before I share how I decided on the design of the card, I would like to draw your attention to the new watermark on the card. Beth Silaika over at Freckled Fun Designs created it for me. She is a wonderful talent and has many other designs as well. If you are interested in getting a watermark for your pictures, or a banner for your blog, she is certainly the girl to talk to. She is very quick in responding and works patiently with you until you are happy with her creation.

Ok, on to the design. This was another card created from the sketch Beate gave last week. I have been wanting to use the Christmas tree and flourishes and was looking for something different. I really enjoy embossing and it seemed to be a perfect technique for the pretty flourishes. I think embossings adds such an elegant touch. Also brand new to my stamping supplies is the ticket punch, which I used in the corners. I am so looking forward to learning some other ways of using it. Finally, I sponged with creamy caramel. I like the somewhat weathered look it gives. Enjoy!

Card Recipe:

Stamps: Seasons of Joy, Tag Stamp, Canvas Background
Ink: Versamark, Chocolate Chip
Paper: True Thyme, River Rock
Other: Dazzling Diamonds, Vintage Brads, Clear Embossing Powder, Hodgepodge Hardware and Sherbert Ribbon

Sunday, October 21, 2007

Christmas Card

Well I'm really trying to get a step ahead on my Christmas cards, as well as prepare for an upcoming craft fair. This was a fun card to do, because I don't usually think of blues as Christmas colors, yet I really wanted to challenge myself and step out of my comfort box. I think the colors really worked with this particular card. I used Beate's weekend sketch as the layout. It was fun and a challenge and I feel great about how it turned out. I also turned to Beate's blog for some advice on taking pictures of my cards. It took a few photos and changes in layouts before I finally found one I liked. I am THRILLED with the outcome. I feel the new layout really showcases the card much better than my scanner did. Plus, it picks up the glitter, which the scanner just doesn't do very well.

Card Recipe:

Stamps: Seasons of Joy, Snowman Stamp from Craft Store
Paper: Watercolor paper, Soft Sky, Blue Bayou
Ink: Black Stazon, Blue Bayou, Soft Sky, Going Gray, Basic Gray, Only Orange, Versamark
Other: Watercolor Crayons, Dazzling Diamonds Glitter, Silver Brad, Silver Cord

Monday, October 8, 2007

Fall Is Finally Here

Well I must say that I'm quite excited about this card. It is one of the new sets from the Holiday Mini. I received it as a gift and I just LOVE IT!!! It's just the perfect set to watercolor to. Something I think looks great, but I seriously need more practice at. The set also comes with a Halloween face to make it a bit more versatile. I used the masking technique for this, meaning that I stamped one of each size pumpkin on a plain piece of white paper, cut them out, and placed them in the picture to stamp over, so the lines to the pumpkin in back would not show through. I love the look of this, though I rarely have the patience to stamp and cut an extra anything, much less two of them. For this it was so worth it. I love the way it turned out. I also did some sponging with the creamy carmel around the edges. It seems that I am in sponging mode at the moment. Everything I do seems to need a little bit of sponging to give it that something extra. Hopefully the weather will cool off soon and really start to feel like Fall.

Card Recipe:
Stamps: Autumn Harvest
Paper: Watercolor Paper, Only Orange, Always Artichoke
Ink: Black, Only Orange, Creamy Caramel
Other: Watercolor crayons, Only Orange and Always Artichoke, Vintage Brads

Simple Idea

Well this is another beautiful card that we made at Stamp Camp that I just had to share. It was simple and I can't tell you all the compliments that have been received about it. There's just such an element of elegance to it. I know the scan of the card doesn't reflect it well, but we used the Baroque stamp and clear embossing on the blue. It was interesting to me how dark it make it, but it looks great close-up. We also used the new satin ribbon from the Holiday Mini (SU). It was honestly a quick card to make and there are so many ways to use it. It would work great as a holiday card, birthday, thinking of you and more! I haven't quite decided who to send it to yet, but I know I really want to purchase the Baroque Motifs stamp set now.

Sunday, September 30, 2007

Make A Wish!

What a wonderful set this is. I've wanted it since I first laid eyes on it. Gina K has certainly outdone herself with the versatility of this set. It is from her "Stamps For A Cause" selection. When you purchase the Make A Wish set, $7.00 of the purchase price goes directly to the Make A Wish Foundation. So you not only get this wonderful set, but you get to make a difference for others as well. What more reason do you need to make this purchase? This was the first card I've made with the set. I pulled out my SU watercolor crayons to color the cake. The designer paper is something I've had laying around for a while. I love the soft look of the paper and thought the watercolored cake would compliment the paper. I used a blue tinted organza ribbon and a balloon stamp on the tag. I was very pleased with the outcome.

Saturday, September 29, 2007

Halloween Card

Where has the time gone? I can't believe that it is nearly October! The bonus of this time of year is fun Halloween cards as well as the beautiful colors of fall for some amazing Thanksgiving and Harvest cards. Today I am highlighting a card we made at Stamp Camp last week. I just love it! The designer paper completely sets the mood for this card. As you can see, it's a pretty simple layout with light stamping. We used the rock and roll method to add some definition to pumpkin. For those of you who have not heard of the rock and roll method, it means that the pumpkin was initially stamped in a light color and then we took a darker color and rolled it only on the edges of the stamp. It's a terrific look, when I remember to use the technique. :-)

Monday, September 3, 2007

Christmas Tag Card

I know it seems early, but it will be here before we know it. This is one of the Christmas cards I have been working on. I love the look of the craft white ink on the brown paper. I don't immediately think of brown as a Christmas color. I also like the tag look. One of the first sets of Christmas stamps I ever bought was a bunch of small stamps from Hobby Lobby, and they are perfect for tags. I think the tags add a fun dimension to the card. Although I used my Stampin' Up punches, most of the paper on this card was odds and ends I had laying about.

(Click on the photo to enlarge it for viewing.)

Friday, August 31, 2007

Something New and Fun

A couple of stamp camps back, we learned a new technique, using the small tag punch and a fold that eventually became a really unique flower. Since I recently received the small punch, I have been using different colors and playing with them to come up with some different looks. This is one of them. I used the new designer paper and the colors of almost amethyst and apricot appeal. I love those colors together. I did a bit of sponging around the whisper white paper, and used the garden green stampin' write marker to make the stem. I love the bling in the center of the flower (though it is a bit hard to see in the pic). I think it gives it a "whimsy" feel. :-)

Saturday, August 25, 2007

Simple and Quick

I love the new Trio Flower Punch. I recently ordered and received the "Three For You Punch Box" set from Stampin' Up. How could I resist with the special going on this month that includes the notecards. It seems as if the projects are limitless with this set. Already we have done some fun stuff at Stamp Camp with it, and this next week I am attending a camp doing 7 different projects with just this set! I can't wait! I have seen so many creative ideas including ideas for Fall and Christmas. I hope you enjoy the attached creation.

Card Recipe:

Stamps: Three For You
Ink: Purely Pomegranate
Paper: Whisper White, Purely Pomegranate and Wild Wasabi
Other: Trio Flower Punch and Gold brads

Monday, July 30, 2007

Simple Get Well Card

Hello everyone! I hope you had a wonderful weekend. I worked on a couple of "Get Well" cards this weekend featuring the bee from the "Farm Fever" stamp set. Unfortunately the scanner doesn't seem to pick up the glitter on his wings, which was my favorite part.

Card Recipe:

Stamps: Farm Fever, Simply Sent
Ink: Basic Black, Versamark
Paper: Kraft, Basic Black, Whisper White and DS Spring Flowers
Other: Summer Sun Stampin' Write Marker, Dazzling Diamonds

Friday, July 27, 2007

I Won!!

I am so excited! I have been visiting lots of blogs as of late, looking for inspiration and ideas. I have also learned a new term, "blog candy." (I really do need to put together a glossary for the beginning stamper so they aren't as lost as I have been on these blogs. lol) Anyway, blog candy is a gift from the host of a particular site. Some of them give away product, some give away things they have made. They do this to thank the visitors who visit their site. How wonderful is that? You visit a site for inspiration and ideas, and get rewarded for doing so. Amazing! So, I was visiting such a site, diane (cookiestamper on SCS) has a wonderful blog located at papercookies. Such an inspiration she is. She has such amazing style in her cards. She was giving away some blog candy, or "cookie crumbs" as she puts it, and all you needed to do was leave her a comment. Well I did, and found out this morning that I won the cookie crumbs! The most exciting part is that they are pieces from sets I do not have, and she actually did the stamping and the cutting for me. I can't wait to get them and use them on some new card creations. I highly recommend visiting her site, especially if you are looking for a GREAT tip on how to deal with keeping small pieces of paper in position while you are trying to punch them. Thank you again diane!

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

A Sketch Challenge For A Card?

Have you ever participated in a sketch challenge? I didn't really understand what they were until recently. Since then, I've seen them on several different blogs. One of my very favorite blogs to visit is that of Beate Johns. fresh & fun. She is such an amazing talent. If you haven't been to her site before, I HIGHLY recommend that you stop by. Beate recently posted the attached as a sketch challenge. You don't have to use the same colors, but the challenge is to create a card with that layout. I was initially a bit nervous about this undertaking, but found that in the end it was quite challenging for me, but a lot of fun. I have also since noted several bloggers have shared that the weekly challenges they participate in truly help them to become more creative with their own cards. SCS (Splitcoaststampers) not only weekly sketch challenges, but weekly color challenges as well. I will try and post my first completed sketch challenge later in the week, and just maybe…….I'll get brave and go for the color challenge next week. Here's hoping you are able to make some time for stamping in your day.

Saturday, July 21, 2007

Stamp Camp Is The Best!

I just love going to Stamp Camp. It's the highlight of my month. I can't wait to see what new ideas and products Heather has in store for us. She is so creative! I also find that she challenges me in some of her projects because of the designs of the cards or the colors she chooses. I sometimes find myself being very safe in my color choices, but am working to breakout from that.

At last night's camp we did 3 cards that ventured away from the "traditional" size card with the traditional fold. This one I really enjoyed. We folded the paper in half to make the card, then folded the top of the card back. We then adhered a piece of the two-sided designer paper to each part of the card front that was showing. We then stamped the Winston Churchill quote onto some white paper adhering it to brown backing with enough room at the bottom to add a splash of ribbon color to the card. After adding a few flowers created by the SU flower punch and dotting their middles with a white gel pen, we added the adhesive tape to stick it to the top part of the card, and there you have it. A beautiful card with a unique fold, AND, there is still plenty of room inside to write whatever you'd like. It was a really quick card to make and I'm looking forward to coming up with some new ways to utilize this card fold with other sets and colors. Thanks Heather!!

Thursday, July 19, 2007

Emboss Resist

This card was a bit time consuming to make, but well worth it when I see the finished product. I was inspired by a card I saw in the Splitcoast gallery a while back. I'm still looking for the card so I can give proper credit.

I started with a piece of Whispering White Cardstock and stamped the Lexicon of Love "Friend" stamp across it in the Basic Black ink until the background filled. I then took the Paint Prints stamp and the Versamark ink and stamped a few of flowers. I sprinkled on the clear embossing powder and heat them until they were set. Next came the Creamy Caramel ink which I applied all over the front of the card with a brayer. I'm still not totally competent with a brayer, so it took a bit of work for it to be even. I once again stamped a few more flowers with the Versamark, sprinkled with clear embossing powder and set with the embossing gun. Then I covered the entire card with Close To Cocoa ink using the brayer. After it was evenly covered, I took a tissue to make sure and get all the extra ink off the embossed flowers, which in turn made them pop to the eye. I couldn't quite figure out how to finish the card off, so I set it down for a day or two. I finally decided it was time to take out the twill tape and chip board and attempt something new. I sponged the chip board piece with Creamy Caramel several times. It seemed as if the chip board would just suck up the color. But then I noticed a kind of suede look to it which I really liked. So I once again took the Lexicon of Love stamp and inked only the large Friend and stamped it on the Twill Tape. I attached the chip board with some brads from the SU Hodgepodge Hardware.

One of the things I really love about the way the browns worked together is that although it has flowers on it, it has a masculine feel as well. I love versatile cards!

Card Recipe:

Stamps: Lexicon of Love, Paint Prints
Ink: Versamark, Basic Black, Creamy Caramel, Close To Cocoa
Paper: Whispering White
Other: Brayer, Twill Tape, Chipboard, Hodgepodge Hardware, Sponge, Clear Embossing Powder

Thursday, July 12, 2007

Where Do I Begin

Once you decide you want to start stamping, it can often be overwhelming when deciding what products you must have verses the products you initially need. Thankfully there are all kinds of resources out there to help the new stamper. One resource I highly recommend is Stampin' Up ( They offer a variety of kits entitled Simply Sent (they are located on pages 12-14 of the 2007 Fall-Winter catalog). The kits are all slightly different, but all include cards and envelopes for 10-12 cards, pre-cut paper, mini ink pads, a stamp set, glue dots, various embellishments, and a book of step-by-step directions to create two different looks for your card. I ordered the Simply Sent Good Things kit from their Spring Mini Catalog earlier this year and had a blast with it. After making the initial dozen cards, I was left with the three stampin, spots which still have plenty of use in them, and the stamp set itself. I recently saw an idea from one of their older catalogs and decided to modify it by using the Good Things Stamping set. I also used some spring colors. As you can see, it's a very simple and quick card to make. In the most recent Stampin' Up Catalog I referred to earlier, they have included some new sets with some great embellishments like the zig zag ribbon and Dazzling Diamonds Stampin' Glitter. I think it really allows the new (and the seasoned) stamper to try new products, see what they like AND once they've finished those cards, inspire some creativity to find some new ways to use the stamp set. If you get a chance to try them out, let me know what you think.

Card Recipe:

Stamps: Simply Sent Good Things
Ink: Versamark, Basic Black
Paper: Apricot Appeal, Whispering White
Other: Almost Amethyst Ribbon, Mellow Moss and Apricot Appeal Stampin' Write Markers

Monday, July 9, 2007

Weekend Fun

My friend Cheryl came over to the house this weekend so we could put all our supplies to work and make some cards. We had a great time. She had decided she really wanted to make a card with a giraffe on it for a friend, so we combined our products. I contributed my "In The Wild" set from SU, and she chose the paper and ink colors, as well as some ribbon options we would use for the card. We then went to work. As we were going along, we decided the greens were too plain, so we added some texture by using the "Canvas Background" stamp and the leaf stamp from the "A Greeting For All Reasons" along with Versamark ink on the large green background paper. I think it really added a nice touch. The ribbon ended up being a bit tricky because it was a bit wide and hard to tie. I tried to re-work it a few different ways before deciding to bend the ribbon in half and adding a piece from the SU Hodge Podge kit. I think our cards turned out great, and I'm looking forward to other card possibilities with this particular set.

Card Recipe:

Stamps: In The Wild, Canvas Background Stamp, A Greeting For All Reasons
Ink: Chocolate Chip, Creamy Carmel and Versamark
Paper: Always Artichoke, So Saffron and Mellow MossOther: Brads and ribbon from the craft store; Hodgpodge from SU

Saturday, July 7, 2007

Masculine Cards

I have often found myself struggling with creating cards with a more masculine feel to them. It is so easy to reach for all the different flower stamps and pastels and create something beautiful and pleasing to the female eye. A friend pointed out that guys like receiving cards too and I was being somewhat discriminatory in thinking that they didn't appreciate them as much as females. Although this was all said in friendly banter, I stopped to think about the comment and realized it was true. I decided to make a concerted effort to regularly make cards that didn't include flowers and could be used as masculine cards.

I am attaching a card I made for a male . I think it is actually my favorite of all the cards I have created. One reason is that it was so fun to make. As I was trying to decide which way to go, all these ideas started coming into my head which resulted in my using two of my favorite techniques, bleaching and embossing. It sounds really complicated, but the difficulty level on the card was actually easy to moderate.

I learned the bleaching technique at a Stamp Camp I attended (thanks Heather). We took a stamp, sprayed it with bleach, stamped it on colored paper and waited for it to dry. As it is dried the paper color changed to reveal a slightly distorted version of the stamp, and a really unique look. I LOVED it!! As I was trying to decide how to prepare the background of my masculine card, I decided to bleach to French Script background stamp onto the More Mustard paper. In the photo it is not as easily defined as it is in person, though you can still notice the somewhat weathered look it created. I felt it still needed a bit of color so I stamped off the Print Pattern background stamp with basic black. I then moved on to the Musical Manuscript stamp. I first stamped it in the basic black on the So Saffron paper. I then took a dauber and lightly stamped around the edges in Creamy Carmel. Then comes the fun part, the embossing. Since I wanted it to have a "cracked glass" look to it, it was going to require layering of the embossing powder. After applying the Versamark to the entire piece of paper, I covered it with the clear embossing powder and heated it. I then applied two more layers of embossing before placing the paper in the freezer. If you leave it there just a minute or two, when you take it out, it is nice and crisp. Start bending it and the cracks appear. I just love the look of that. I finished it off by rubbing some Creamy Carmel on the top to make a cracks stand out a bit more before adhering to the black paper to frame it. I was very pleased with the end result. Sometimes we just don't realize how creative we can be until someone presents us with a challenge.

Thursday, July 5, 2007

What is CASEing??

I initially came across this term when I started scrapbooking. I was told it meant "Copy and Share Everything." I thought this to be a great concept because some people have an amazing knack for creativity, while others of us need a nudge in the idea department. I quite often found some wonderful page ideas that I took the lead from and then tweaked to make it my own. I would often stand back amazed at what I could do, and thankful that there are so many creative minds out there willing to share their ideas.

Since I started stamping, I have again come across the term "CASEing" and in various definitions saw it described as "Copy and Steal Everything." (That doesn't sound nearly as nice or user friendly.) I often visit Splitcoaststampers ( If you haven't been their previously, I highly recommend the site. They offer great ideas, tutorials, and many forums to connect with other stampers. I recall reading about CASEing in one of those forums and found that it is a pretty hot topic. Many people have their own feelings about this and whether or not it is right. I personally do a lot of CASEing. Sometimes I'll take an idea and change up the colors or the stamps. Sometimes I'll run with an idea and it will end up being a completely different and unique card. I enjoy becoming inspired by others and am thankful for their creative minds. However, if you see a card here that was inspired by another, you will also see me give credit to that person. I appreciate the time and thoughts they have put into their creations, and want to respect and acknowledge their ideas in doing so. I am happy to share ideas for others to use, so feel free to look and CASE away at anything I've done that you enjoy.

Welcome to Whimsical Notations

I LOVE stamping and sharing this fun and creative hobby with other people. My goal is to create a site that offers tips and ideas to the beginner, as well as the experienced stamper. This is my first attempt at a blog and I consider it a work in progress. As I continue to learn and create new projects, I will post additional tips and tutorials. Feel free to make Whimsical Notations a regular blog stop.