Sunday, February 28, 2016

SWAA March Blog Hop - Focus on Penelope and/or Boxes

Welcome to our Blog Hop!  I am featuring Close To My Heart's "Penelope" paper pack.   The blog hop is a great big circle, so you can start here and work your way all around. 

You may have just come here from Aggie Peters' blog.  If you get lost along the way, you’ll find the complete list of participating consultants on Melinda’s Blog.

I love the way this paper pack has 10 different patterned papers plus two "Picture My Life" sheets with nine more patterned 4" x 3" or 4" x 6" cards ready to cut out for pocket or regular scrapbook pages or cards.  On one side these cards are oriented vertically and on the other side horizontally.

My cards were inspired by the month of March! Green is coming soon in this brown and gray world around many of us!  The card base was cut out using Cricut Artfully Sent. I loved the curved front! I also wanted to use the Operation Smile stamp set, "Animal Greetings," so I included a small trimmed circle of gold glitter paper to anchor the tiny alligator chosen because he's also green. He's standing on a bow tied from Fern Thick Twine.  I used gold shimmer trim to easily edge the bottom of the inside.

My second card was embellished with a bow and glittery hearts from the Pear Fundamental Assortment.

I added four of the hearts inside the card to highlight the cut-out shamrock. You can see the shine of the gold embossed design on the bow here:

I shared three cards earlier this month using the Penelope paper. You can read the details about how I made them here. Come back throughout this month to see the other Penelope projects I'll continue to share here.

Thank you for visiting!  Now you're ready to move on to  Sheila's blog to see what delightful project she's prepared for you.

I'm sharing my second "green shine" card with the following challenges:

Creative Knockouts #130 - Go Green
D.L.Art Thankful Thursday #175 - Frogs and/or use the color green

Saturday, February 27, 2016

Mojo Monday 436 Thinking of You Card

I haven't used any of my hoarded Basic Grey paper lately so when I pulled out a piece for my previous post, I pulled out the Euphoria pack, too. I know so many people who could use a card of encouragement that I really should be using this paper up.

The pale pink and green really make me think of spring!  So this card includes two of the stickers, flower and fern, from that pack along with the butterflies I stamped from the CTMH "Your Beautiful Self" set. I used the Mojo Monday sketch #436 and the colors from Color Throwdown #381.

If you're like me and get inspired by pastel colors to think of springtime, be encouraged. It's coming soon! Pass it on!

I'm sharing this card with the following challenges:
Addicted to Stamps and More #182 - Make your mark ( used Copic Markers)
Aloha Friday Challenge #66 - In the garden
Color Throwdown #381 - pink, green, kraft
Crafting for All Seasons #120 - 3 of a Kind (butterflies, pink sparkles)
Crazy 4 Challenges - Spring
Let's Color Saturday Linky Party #4 - (I used Copic Markers)
Mojo Monday #436 - sketch
Sisterhood of Crafters - Think Spring

My 3 Amigos Sombrero Layout

When I saw the Fiesta challenge at Bitten By the Bug2 on Monday I had two old photos from 1963 sitting on my desk. I had no idea what I'd do with them, but they reminded me of my sisters and the time my grandfather encouraged me to learn to speak Spanish. I didn't think I had any Cricut cuts that might go with the theme of Fiesta, but thanks to "Destinations" and "Graphically Speaking" I came up with a couple.

I had already cut up four pieces of Basic Grey "June Bug" that I hadn't used, but could pass as a Mexican fiesta design, so here's the result:

I used the Graphically speaking hat and words as my title and combined it with cactus from the other cartridge. I'm guessing from my brief introduction to Spanish in 4th, 5th and 6th grades that maybe "amigos" is masculine, but it didn't worry me since I think it was a play on words from a movie or show. I added stickers to make the word "my."

The Destinations cartridge had the cactus and the adobe Spanish mission church with the words New Mexico, but it was easy enough to cut out the word "New" since my grandparents had just brought back the sombreros from Mexico.

Here's my cut file in case you use the Cricut Explore.  I used CTMH papers: New England Ivy, Lagoon, Poppy, and some retired scraps of beach paper and dotted gray.

I'm not sure if my grandfather would have been as proud of me becoming proficient in French instead of Spanish, but I wish I could have told him what an influence he had on me guiding me to higher education and to enjoy people from different cultures all over the world.

I'm also sharing this project with the following challenges:
Bitten By The Bug 2 - Fiesta theme
Crafty Boots Challenge - no stamps allowed
Crafty Girls Creations #15 - anything goes
PDE Linky Party #112 - anything goes

Wednesday, February 24, 2016

Colorful Butterfly Birthday Card

Each year by the end of winter my eyes are starved for color! Where we live the world is shades of brown and gray, even the sky today. So I was ready for the bright colors at ColourQ Challenge #330:

My daughter is so busy with four kids, a good job, church and sports activities that she rarely looks at my blog, so here's the birthday card she's about to receive on Friday:

I used a bright red and yellow Basic Grey designer paper that I hoarded much too long. The butterflies are from a new CTMH set called "Your Beautiful Self." I colored them with ShinHan Touch Twin Markers (Y222, R11, B262, GY235) because the fine tips are great for the tiny spaces on the small butterflies.  I added three sparkles on the three butterflies and three gold metallic epoxy hearts (Treasured Puffies).  My sets of three were deliberate for the Crafting for All Seasons #120 - Three of a Kind.

Thank you for visiting! If you, too, are tired of winter, be encouraged! Spring in the Northern Hemisphere will soon be here with its lovely colors!

I'm sharing this card with the following challenges:

Addicted to Stamps and More #182 - Make your mark ( I used alcohol ink markers.)
ColourQ Challenge #330 
Craftin Desert Divas Linky Party - Nature's Wonders
Crafting for All Seasons #120 - Three of a Kind.
Crafting from the Heart #100 - anything goes
Crafty Gals Corner #60 - anything goes
Simon Says Stamp - Anything goes

Monday, February 22, 2016

Animal Greetings Thank You Card

I recently posted a couple of cards highlighting a recent stamp set that's a CTMH February special, Share the Love. I loved the fact that $7.00 of the purchase price was donated to Operation Smile which helps children around the world who have disfiguring facial problems requiring surgery.  So I decided to make a few cards using another Operation Smile special stamp available all year, Animal Greetings.

I decided to use a CAS (Clean and Simple) style to keep the lovely small animal from getting lost in patterned paper. I was inspired to use the beautiful colors at Stamping Royalty.  I used the Cricut Artistry cartridge to make the die cuts. I cut the heart border on each color of cardstock, put double-sided tape on the back of the heart openings and inserted different colors into the holes. I did the same with the tips of the sentiment banner. I colored the cute pig with alcohol ink markers. The white background was embossed with the Chevron embossing folder, but the angle of the light only shows one side of the embossed diagonals.

I'm sharing this card with the following challenges:
AAA Cards Game #58 - CAS and sequins
Crafty Catz #312 - CAS
Critters and Creatures February Linky Party - anything goes with a creature
Hiding in my Craft Room #239 - Clean and Simple
Ooh La La Creations #198 - Clean and Simple
Stampin' Royalty #317 - color challenge

Thursday, February 18, 2016

Happy Birthday with La Vie en Rose

I just had to make a birthday card from this same paper, La Vie en Rose, that I used for Valentines, with an emphasis on HAPPY. It only uses words to complement the flowers on the bottom panel. I wanted to pair the floral paper with this super version of the word, "happy" that I cut using Cricut Artbooking (p. 75)

I white-embossed the word Birthday after I had cut apart the two separate words of one of the phrases in the acrylic stamp set, Joyful Birthday. I added sparkle using a strip of metallic gold foil tape, black and gold ribbon, and gold sequins with a dollop of liquid glass.

Thanks for looking! May you bless someone else with a big dose of HAPPY!

I'm sharing this card with the following challenges:
Crafting for All Seasons #120 - three of a kind (3 sequins)
Creative Moments #87 - anything goes/ twist- embossing, wet (or dry) 
Dream Valley #125 - Sparkle, bling, embellish
Moving Along with the Times #14 - words only, no image
Southern Girls Challenge - add a little sparkle

Tuesday, February 16, 2016

Mojo 435 Peace on Earth Card

I made this Christmas card to emphasize the important Christmas message the angels brought to simple shepherds at the birth of Christ -  Peace on Earth. Each time I read this sentiment my mind begins singing "I Heard the Bells on Christmas Day" which has this phrase. I combined the sketch at Mojo Monday and the colors of the inspiration at the Christmas Card Challenge #11.



I cut the gray panels using Cricut Artbooking, using old CTMH colors, Gray Flannel and Gray Wool. The pink embellishment was cut using Cricut Artiste with Pixie and Hollyhock cardstock. If you'd like to use my cut files on the Cricut Explore for flower and snowflake panels you can find it here in two sizes.  The white embossed sentiment from "Peace on Earth" stamp set byVerve is stamped on a very dark blue Bazzill cardstock. I used a Cuttlebug embossing folder for the white background. Bitty sparkles, a clear sparkle on a silver sequin, and silver shimmer trim are the final embellishments.

I'm sharing this Christmas card with the following challenges:
A Snowflake's Promise #16 - anything Christmas/winter
Christmas Card Challenge #11 - Christmas card with optional color challenge
Dream Valley Challenge #125 - sparkle, bling, embellish
Everybody Art Challenge #356 - techniques - embossing, 2 kinds
Suzy Bee's Bloomin' Challenge #117 - anything goes/twist-sentmental

Thursday, February 11, 2016

You Make My Heart Sing

My son and I share a special bond. One of the things we have in common is that we both played in band for many years. In fact, he'd learned to play viola in 5th grade, trumpet in 7th grade, and guitar in 12th grade. He learned them so easily and had a mom who was so proud of him at all of his concerts, especially jazz band performances. Music played a big roll in our church experience, our schooling and our lives.  So I naturally thought of him when I saw this sentiment from Close to my Heart: "You make my heart sing" printed on a zip strip on top of one of the patterned papers.

I thought a couple of notes and a treble clef would be the perfect thing to add to the circles on this week's Mojo Monday sketch. (And I think he'll forgive the pink patterned paper that I embossed and rubbed with white pigment ink since it's a Valentine!)

Here's a close-up of the sentiment and heart.

I'm sharing this card with the following challenges:

Aud Sentiments Challenge #148 - Use a love sentiment 
Bitten by the Bug 2 - Valentine Hearts (Cranberry heart from Hannah Montana cart)
Craft Rocket Challenge #8 - Valentine/Love
Crafty Girls Challenge #14 - anything goes
Die Cuttin' Divas #252 -  Love (Die cuts include Cricut die cuts: Artiste circles, Hannah Montana music symbols and heart.)
Through the Purple Haze #95 - Share some love
Unicorn Challenge #6 - Lots of Love

Wednesday, February 10, 2016

Hug, Kisses, and Valentine Wishes

When I was young there was a song with the lyrics: "What the world needs now, is love, sweet love. It's the only thing that there's just too little of." We certainly would have peace in the world if everyone followed the command to love God with all their hearts and love others as we love ourselves. It's really up to us to share God's love with our corner of the world. A kind word or deed here, a loving card there. What a better world it might be with just this community of crafters making a difference!

This valentine today was also made using my favorite paper for valentines, La Vie en Rose. The red floral paper inspired me to use the large flower from Beloved Bouquet, the retired January stamp of the month. I stamped the flower outline with Ruby ink and colored with several red and pink alcohol ink markers and the blender. I had the finished card sitting on the counter and looked at it from across the room. That's when I realized it looked rather plain and needed a touch of yellow in the areas I'd left white.  That made it more like roses I've raised.

I cut the white mat using Cricut Artbooking (p. 84). I changed the size proportions by unlocking them in the edit screen on Cricut Explore. Then I made both height and width 4." This design with the hearts still looked OK proportionately.  I liked the way they let the floral paper show in the hearts. The Cricut cut out the center rectangle so I embossed it with Tiny Hearts embossing folder and mounted it on a black mat to cover the rectangular hole.

Thank you for visiting! May God richly bless you as you share love with your world

I'm sharing this card with the following challenges:

Crafting by Designs - Hearts!
Crafting for All Seasons #119 - Love is in the Air
Crafty Creations #308 - Hearts
Creative Card Crew #106 - Love
Creative Moments #86 - Anything goes with optional Twist: Romance/Love
Fan-Tastic Tuesday #106 - Anything goes with a twist - So in Love
Little Red Wagon #328 - Happy Valentines Day
Mod Squad Challenge - From the Heart
The Paper Shelter #235- Be My Valentine

Monday, February 8, 2016

Valentine Swing Card

Valentines Day is such a good time to openly share your love with those around you. I also believe that it's a reminder to us to bless others with acts of kindness and love. In this lovely on-line card-making community we have so much inspiration to do this with lovely cards. I've given a valentine to an adult before who said she hadn't gotten one since she was a child.   I usually like to write a lengthy personal message inside, but sometimes just a simple expression is all that you need to make a difference in someone's life, so a swing card is one of those. This one is meaningful but not gushy.

Reversible papers are so perfect for swing cards if they have the right combination of patterns. Here was a quick swing card using Cricut Artiste, (p.52), Artbooking (p.80), and paper from La Vie en Rose paper pack, my absolute favorite for valentines (see my others here) and scrapbooking wedding photos! You can get my cutting file here if you use the Cricut Explore and these cartridges.

The tricky part of stamping the inside of a swing card is to get it under the top layer so it doesn't show when it's closed. I embossed the inside with the hearts folder, leaving a space in the center for a sentiment by using a circle diffuser.  Then I placed the stamps on the area to be stamped, closed the top to be sure the heart covered the sentiment. I layed the clear block on top of the acrylic stamps, lining up the edges of the square block with the edge of the white mat so I could line I up again after inking.
This sentiment came from the January Stamp of the Month, Beloved Bouquet, and the gold embossed hearts were from a long-retired set (CTMH So Lucky) that I chose because they fit the hearts on the mat perfectly. The final touches are the black and gold ribbon and the gold epoxy heart (Treasured Puffies flat for mailing!) on front.

Thank you for visiting! May you be blessed with loving relationships and bless others with your overflowing love!

I'm sharing this card with the following challenges:
Artistic Inspirations #149 - anything goes with twist of Valentine
Bitten by the Bug 2 - Valentine Hearts
Cards in Envy - from the heart
Dream Valley Challenge #124 - Valentine's Day
Fantabulous Cricut #269 - Valentine's Day
Heart 2 Heart - Favorite paper pack
Love to Scrap #71 -have a heart

Sunday, February 7, 2016

Hello, I Love You with Share the Love

I was inspired again by the Share the Love stamp set to make another Clean and Simple card that I'll use as a Valentine. (My first two cards are here.)  I was really glad to get this stamp set because with my purchase, $7.00 of my purchase price went to Operation Smile, providing free surgeries for children in over 60 countries around the world. What a difference those surgeries make in the life of a child.

I thought the phone and the speech balloon would be enhanced by the card on Cricut Artfully Sent that has two cut out speech balloons (from page 1). 

I backed the speech balloon openings with a very subtle floral pattern and added a thin strip of arrows, both from the Charlotte paper pack. I embellished with a thin strip of red glitter paper, silver sequins, and red enamel hearts.

I'm sharing this card with the following challenges:
AAA Cards #57 - "Love Me Like You Do"
Brown Sugar #184 - Valentine, Love
CAS on Sunday #76 - Valentine
Simply Create Too #102 - Love or Valentines
4 Crafty Chicks #284 - Love

Saturday, February 6, 2016

Share the Love Blog Hop

Welcome to the February Share The Love Blog Hop!You may have just come from Wendy Coffman's fantastic blog.  This month at Close to my Heart you can purchase this special stamp set, Share the Love (CC1060), that is perfect for February, especially for Valentines or other cards that share the love.  When you purchase this stamp set, $7.00 of the purchase goes to Operation Smile, helping to repair the smile of a child somewhere in the world.

I used the Charlotte paper pack, including one of the 3" x 4" cards for pocket scrapbooking.

I embellished the card with black glittery triangles and hearts along with a shiny clip, all from the Fundamental Assortment-black. Here are close-ups of the embellishments.

My second card is a CAS (Clean and Simple) card using a Cricut film frame and silver glitter paper:

Thank you for visiting!  Now you are ready to get more great ideas and hop on to Kirsten's blog.

To see another card I made with this set visit my post here.

I'm sharing this last card with the following challenges:
Addicted to Stamps and more #179 - CAS
All Sorts #349 - Clean and Simple
Cardz 4 Guys #105 - Make It Sparkle
Craft for the Craic February Challenge - Something to make you smile

Monday, February 1, 2016

February Stamp of the Month - Balloon Animals

I'm excited to welcome you to the February Stamp of the month blog hop using the Balloon Animals stamp set.  If you have come here from Helen's Blog, you are on the right path! The blog hop is a great big circle, so you can start here and work your way all around.  If you get lost along the way, you’ll find the complete list of participating consultants on Melinda’s Blog.

I hope you'll enjoy the many Close To My Heart Consultants sharing their creations using this month's SOTM and other great CTMH products on their blogs. This is simple to do - just click on the link at the end of the post on each blog to move to the next one! 

I chose to make the balloon animals on my cards pastel colors, mostly matching the papers from the Penelope paper pack, with the addition of a bit of Pixie and Thistle cardstock from the Whimsy cardstock pack. I made birthday cards with those papers, the  Balloon Animals stamp set,  and the Cricut. If you have the Cricut Explore, and the Artfully Sent and Artistry cartridges, you can use my cut files here to make your own cards. If you don't have either of those cartridges and would like to get them, you can use the links here.  All of the cards are 5.5" x 4.25."

I made these cards for my youngest granddaughter to give when she's invited to a birthday party. My daughter said she's to the parties of boys in her class, but so far only made this first one for a young boy.

I backed the Cricut cut mat with Honey striped paper.  Before adhering, I put pencil dots in the corners of the stars and traced the confetti swirls. Then I covered only swirl lines with the Pear striped washi tape that comes in the Limeade set of tape, avoiding the star markings. I erased the light pencil dots that marked the stars and adhered the Honey strip. The entire mat was pop dotted onto one of the Crystal Blue papers in the Penelope pack using Thin 3-D Foam Tape.  The balloon animals were stamped with Crystal Blue, Honey, and Pear inks and cut out. They were pop dotted with regular 3-D Foam Tape.  I added  a few Blue Dot and Green Triangle Enamel and Glitter Duos.
I'm sharing this card with the following challenges:
Little Red Wagon #326 - birthday
Mod Squad Challenge - masculine birthday
The Male Room #27 - babies and little boys

Here are two cards I made for little girl birthdays:

 I stamped the giraffe using Sorbet ink and added sparkles and a Pixie Extra Thick Twine bow to the stars tag.

I embossed the Thistle panel on this card using the Confetti Stars embossing folder, then I lightly sanded the stars only using a sanding block. This is what I love about the CTMH cardstock with the white core. With only light pressure using medium grain the block keeps me from sanding the recessed surface. The elephant was stamped with Pixie ink and the monkey with Thistle. I decided to add a little bling using black glitter paper, black an gold ribbon, and gold sequins.

Thank you for visiting. Now you're ready to go back to the beginning if you didn't start there. Visit Catherine's blog.