Creativity is a central source of meaning in our lives---when we are involved in it, we feel that we are living more fully than during the rest of life.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Warm Winter Wishes Blog Hop

Tonight is my last blog hop as part of the Center Stage Spotlight Design Team. This is the official end to my 'duties' as part of the design team. I'm sad that it has come to end because I really had a blast being on the CSS. I hope to have the chance to do it again sometime or to participate on another design team. I learned a lot and had a great time. I'm really looking forward to finding out who the next lucky group is to be named to the Center Stage Spotlight! I'm sure we'll be hearing soon!

Now on to tonight's blog hop card. Tonight we are featuring the stamp set, Warm Winter Wishes, created by Carolyn King. This is, of course, one of my favorites because it has a snowman in it. I've already mentioned on a previous blog post that I collect snowmen so any stamp set that has one will find its way into my stamp room!

Do you ever find inspiration for your cards in odd places? My card was inspired by a bottle of bath gel that has been in my shower since last holiday season (I guess I don't use the stuff very much! LOL!). I was in the shower this morning thinking about the card I would make for this blog hop and I looked at the bottle and had one of those aha moments! The bath gel is from Bath & Body Works and is called Twisted Peppermint. The gel is a reddish-pink color and the bottle has three triangular trees in silver and red designs with peppermint stripes. For some reason I suddenly saw a card done in those colors with lots of bling. So, that is where the idea for my card was born!

Here it is:

To make this card I used Pure Luxury Rocket Red for the base and Pure Luxury Pure White for the next layer. I stamped the snowflakes onto the white paper with Versamark and then embossed them with a white EP that has silver mixed into it. I used my brayer to ink up the sky using Memento London Fog. All of the designer paper I used on the card is from the Cosmo Cricket Jolly by Golly pack. I stamped the coffee mug and two trees onto dp and cut them out. I also stamped the tree on Pure Luxury Silver Lining and cut that out. (The tree stamps are from the fabulous set by Nina Brackett, "Lord of the Season") The ground cover is also a piece of dp from Jolly by Golly that has these great curves in the design so it is perfect for cutting out and using on a card like this. I stamped the snowman with Memento Tuxedo Black onto Pure Luxury Pure White base weight paper, colored him, and cut him out. I purposely used base weight for the snowman because I knew I was going to cut him out and pop him up so I wanted him to be a bit more substantial.

As you can see, I got kind of carried away with all the bling on this card! LOL! It just seemed like it should be 'blingy'! I colored the snowman's scarf, hat, and holly with Spica pens to make them glittery. Even his nose is colored with an orange Spica! The trees have silver and red brads for some of their ornaments and Christmas Red and Frosted Lace Stickles for other ornaments. I used the Frosted Lace Stickles to put snow under the trees and in various places on the ground. I hope you can see all the sparkle in the photo -- it was a bit hard to photograph because of all that sparkle!

For even more inspiration visit Carolyn King - the Illustrator of Warm Winter Wishes and the Idea Center gallery HERE.

Then, check in with Carolyn's special guest designers:

And, finally stop by these GinaK Designer's blogs participating in the hop tonight:

and our CenterStage Spotlight Team:

Joy Hadden
Kay Simmons
Linda Payne
Lori McAree

GinaK will be giving away a copy of Warm Winter Wishes on her blog tonight - so pop over there to leave your comment on her blog for your chance to win the set for free! (If you've already purchased the stamp set, we can swap it out for another GinaK stamp set valued at $19.95 or less.)

Monday, October 19, 2009

Special Delivery Blog Hop Tonight

Tonight we are featuring the fun stamp sets of Tami Mayberry whose first two sets for Gina K Designs were part of the September release. They are Special Delivery and the Add-on set that coordinates with Special Delivery. As part of the September Center Stage Spotlight Design Team for Gina K Designs, these were the sets I helped to preview before they were released. If you go back to late September you'll see that I had a holiday card made with these sets but tonight I made a baby card with the same set! This is quite an unconventional baby card -- kind of bold and wild but it was fun to make and I look forward to giving it to just the right someone when they have a new little one. Don't know who that will be yet but I know it will be perfect for someone!

This card was made using Stampin' Up Green Gable as the base card and for the scalloped circle. The yellow layer, circle, and strip are all made from Stampin' Up Yo-Yo Yellow. That crazy dp is from the wonderful Basic Grey Lime Rickey paper pack (I just love that collection; some great colors and designs!). I stamped the Sweet One image with Gable Green ink from SU on Pure Luxury Pure White layering weight paper and punched it out with the SU scalloped punch. The postage stamps, designs on the postage stamps, and Special Delivery were stamped with Memento Tuxedo Black. The buttons are also from the Basic Grey Lime Rickey collection. I colored the stars on the carriage wheels with a yellow Spica pen and colored the moon and stars with a clear Spica pen to give them some shimmer.

I hope you enjoyed seeing my wild card tonight! It's a bit out of the ordinary for me but I was feeling in the mood for something colorful and fun tonight. Now take a hop along the blog trail to see what the Gina K Designs team and friends have created tonight.

Tami Mayberry, the Illustrator of these two stamp sets has invited a couple of her friends to join in on the blog hop tonight, so click on their blog links to see the projects they've created for us tonight:
Then, check in on these GinaK Designer's participating in the Blog Hop tonight:
After you're done hopping to all the Designer's blogs stop by GinaK's Idea Center here: Special Delivery & Special Delivery Addition for lots more ideas on how to use Tami's stamp sets. And, don't forget to check in on GinaK's blog so you can leave your comment to be entered as a chance to win these two stamp sets too!

Friday, October 16, 2009

Lord of the Season Blog Hop

Tonight is another blog hop that features the beautiful stamp set, "Lord of the Season" by Nina Brackett for Gina K Designs. This set really does feature the four seasons, giving you options for many different cards. For my card tonight I chose the fall topiary but made it into a birthday card for a friend with a fall birthday.

This card was made with the Pure Luxury Pumpkin Spice cardstock. I used a Cuttlebug edge folder to create the design on the side of the card and used a glitter pen to fill in the indentations and the scallop line to make it pop. The dp is a piece that came in the Signs of Autumn Stamp TV kit from Gina K Designs. The scalloped green is Pure Luxury Green Apple. I stamped the focal image onto Pure Luxury Pure White that I cut out and embossed with a rectangle nestie. Before removing the nestie, I sponged with Tim Holtz Distress Ink in Antique Linen.

I colored the image with Copics and stamped the sentiment in Memento Potter's Clay. The purple ribbon is from the Signs of Autumn Stamp TV Kit from Gina K. A couple of copper brads finish it off. A clean and simple card but I felt the image was so pretty and detailed that I didn't need to add a lot of extra bling. I like to make cards like this when I know I need to mail them because they don't need extra postage or special handling.

I hope you enjoyed seeing my card tonight. Thanks for stopping by my "Creative Lane!" Now hop along and see even more ideas with Nina Brackett's Lord of the Season stamp set. Visit her blog as well as the GinaK Idea Center here: Lord of the Season

GinaK Designer's joining in on the hop tonight:

September's Center Stage Spotlight Team:

Nina's Guest DT and friends:

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Very Merry Blog Hop

We are hopping again tonight! The featured stamp set is Theresa Momber's Very Merry Christmas set. I'm sure you will see many different cards on tonight's hop because this set has so many different options. During the release party I posted three different cards made with stamps from this set and tonight I have another one using a completely different stamp than I used on the others. You could easily make all of your holiday cards with just this set. Enjoy the hop tonight! I hope you get lots of great ideas from all the great designers who are participating tonight.

Here is the card I made for tonight's blog hop. I decided to use a gate fold card just for something different than my usual card. It was a fun way to get a card that looks different but wasn't difficult to make. I'm always on the lookout for cards that look good and have a unique element but that I could easily make to use for the holidays.

This card is made using the Pure Luxury All Spruced Up paper from Gina K Designs as its base and for the strip onto which the tree is stamped. The scalloped rectangle and circle are Pure Luxury Silver Lining (that is some gorgeous paper!). I stamped the tree and snowflakes with Colorbox Silver ink and the Magic of the Season circle is stamped with Tsukineko Brilliance Pearlescent Ivy ink.

The tree and snowflake stamps are from Theresa's wonderful Very Merry Christmas set. The Feel the Magic of the Season circle stamp comes from the Holiday Cheer Stamp TV Kit set called Holiday Greetings. I stamped the circle and punched it out with a 1¼" punch and then punched out the center snowflake. I stamped the circle again onto a scrap of the All Spruced Up paper using the silver ink and punched the center snowflake out with a 1/2" punch. I glued the greeting circle onto the silver scalloped circle and then adhered the snowflake dot in the center of the circle with a glue dot. I then popped the whole thing up with pop dots so the tree flap could fit under it. That way the circle acts as a closer to hold the card shut.

I hope you enjoyed seeing my card! Now for even more ideas with Theresa Momber's A Very Merry Christmas stamp set, visit her blog link below as well as the GinaK Idea Center here: A Very Merry Christmas. Theresa's tip sheet has been added to the Idea Center as a PDF so you can print out her tips and suggestions for a handy reference tool. We've also included her Copic coloring links too.

Here's all the Designer's Blog Links to check out tonight:

September's Center Stage Spotlight Team:

and finally, Theresa's Guest Designers for A Very Merry Christmas:

As a bonus, two other stamping friends are playing along on tonight's hop. Check out the blogs and creations of:

Monday, October 12, 2009

Hip to Be Square Blog Hop Tonight

Tonight is the start of a bunch of blog hops featuring the Gina K Designs stamp sets that were released on October 1. Tonight's hop features Melanie Muenchinger's great new set called "Hip to Be Square." This is a really versatile set for making winter/holiday cards, Halloween cards and even baby cards. I have to admit that I didn't order it right away when I saw it because somehow my brain wasn't coming up with a lot of creative ideas for using the set but after I saw some of the absolutely adorable cards some of the Gina K design team made, I knew I had to have it! Some of the snowmen cards were the cutest I've seen! I'll be using this set to make some of those for my holiday cards but tonight's card is actually showcasing the Halloween option in this set.

To make this card I used Pure Luxury Black Onyx paper as the base and layered the new Pure Luxury Fresh Asparagus and Pumpkin Spice on top of it. I stamped the "window" on Pure Luxury Ivory with Versamark and then embossed it with black embossing powder. I cut the two Halloween scenes from a piece of Debbie Mumm dp so they would fit into the windows. You can't see it very well in the photo but the dp is really sparkly! Love that! I trimmed a small piece off the bottom of each one and put them into the window below so it appeared that you are looking out a window with four panes at the scene outside (well, at least that is what it's supposed to look like!) I stamped the circle that comes in the set and then added the jack-o-lantern face in the circle with yellow to look like it is lit up. I colored the pumpkin with Copics and punched it out with a circle punch. Then I stamped the pumpkin top, cut it out, and glued it to the pumpkin. The greeting is stamped in Tuxedo Black ink from Memento. That ghost, candy and 'Happy Haunting' strip is also from the Debbie Mumm dp paper.

For even more ideas with Melanie Muenchinger's Hip to be Square stamp set, visit her blog link below as well as the GinaK Idea Center here: Hip to Square. Melanie's tip sheet has been added to the Idea Center as a PDF so you can print out her tips and suggestions for a handy reference tool!

Here's all the Designer's Blog Links to check out tonight:

September's Center Stage Spotlight Team:

Melanie's Guest Designer for Hip to be Square:

and Special Guests:

Friday, October 2, 2009

Very Merry Christmas, Indeed!

Here's the last of my cards from the big release party last night. What fun! Could you believe all the fabulous cards the design team put out during the party. My mouth was hanging open at some of them because they were so amazing! I hope you enjoyed the party as much as I did and I hope you'll enjoy these last few cards I made.There will be a few more later this month for some blog hops, so stay tuned!

I am a huge fan of the holidays, especially Christmas. When I was a little girl my very German grandmother dearly loved Christmas, especially decorating her tree with all of those old-fashioned glass ornaments made in Germany. My mother is a close second to her in Christmas decorating, baking, etc. so I think I know where my love of the holidays came from!

This new set by Theresa Momber, called A Very Merry Christmas, is perfect for someone like me who never gets tired of making Christmas-themed cards and gift items. I have a ton of Christmas/holiday stamps but this set goes to the top of my list of favorites. I have three cards to share that I made with this set and I have ideas for several more! I love it when a stamp set inspires so many card ideas!
This Bell Card is the first one I made with this set. I used the jingle bells and the holly swag stamps. I stamped the holly first, then masked it and stamped the jingle bells, and then colored them with Copics. I added a little bit of shimmer to the bells with the gold Spica pen. I stamped the greeting with versamark and then embossed it with gold embossing powder to make it coordinate with the gold paper I used. (I really need to get the gold Colorbox ink pad that was part of the great Gina K Designs September release. I don't have a gold pad so I have to emboss if I want anything done in gold.) I cut the greeting out with a nestabilities rectangle and did a scalloped rectangle in gold behind it. Then I used my slot punch so I could thread the ribbon through it and gave it a curling twist to go with the ribbon on the bells.

Here is the rest of the detailed information about the card.
Base card is Pure Luxury Cranberry Tart
Gold is Pure Luxury Good as Gold
Green is Pure Luxury All Spruced Up
Ivory is Pure Luxury Ivory

Ribbon is from the new Gina K Designs Holiday Assortment (it also comes as part of the latest Stamp TV Kit)

My second card was made with the fireplace scene from this set. It looks so warm and cozy I just want to pull up a chair and enjoy the crackling fire! I stamped the image with Memento Rich Cocoa and then colored it with Koh-i-noor pencils and OMS. I decided to use the colored pencils on this instead of markers to give it a softer look. After I colored the image I sponged some Tim Holtz Distress Ink in Antique Linen around the image to soften it even more. If you like to color, you will love working with this stamp. There are lots of details and so many ways you could color it.

Here's the recipe for this one:
Red: Pure Luxury Rocket Red
Brown: Pure Luxury Chocolate Kiss
Ivory Pure Luxury Ivory

Image and sentiment stamped with Memento Rich Cocoa
Sentiment is edged with Vivid Dye Ink Brick Red

Ribbon and Brads: The ribbon is from the Gina K Designs Holiday Assortment (also available in the Stamp TV Kit); the brads are from the Stamp TV Kit

Nestabilities: Labels Two and Double-ended tags

And, finally, the Holly Card. This one features the holly swag from the set as its focal image. The base cardstock is Pure Luxury Cranberry Tart and the white layer is Pure Luxury base weight in Pure White, which is fabulous for embossing like I did here. I used the Cuttlebug 'Joy & Cheer' embossing folder but only embossed part way down the card so I could stamp that lovely sentiment below the focal image. I used the nestabilities scalloped and plain ovals to cut out the cranberry and white ovals. I also embossed the white oval and then used silver rub-on paste around the rim for a bit of added elegance. I stamped the image in Memento Tuxedo Black and colored it with Copic markers. There is a tiny bit of Spica red on the berries to add some bling and the stars are colored with the silver Spica pen. To create the sentiment with the two words in silver I inked all of the other words with Memento Rhubarb Stalk and then did the other two words with Versamark. After I stamped it I very carefully poured silver embossing powder on those two words and heated them. I like how it turned out but would like some finer embossing powder if I were going to do it again. (Note to self -- look for fine silver embossing powder!) Once again, the ribbon is from the Gina K Holiday Assortment. The final touch on the card is the three self-adhesive rhinestones at the bottom, which are available from Gina K Designs.

Whew! That was a lot of ground to cover! I hope you enjoyed seeing these three cards as much as I enjoyed making them!

Don't You Love Snowmen??

I have to admit that I am a "snowman-aholic!" I collect snowmen figures and snowmen stamps and other assorted snowmen things, but here is the other part of my confession, I really hate snow!! My husband cannot understand why I want so many snowmen when I could totally do without winter, cold and snow. I am a born and raised Wisconsinite but every year I dislike snow and cold even more. With all of that said, I have to say that I think the snowman in Carolyn King's latest stamp set, "Warm Winter Wishes," is just darling. He is the focal point of my card today and I really enjoyed working on this one just because he was so fun to play with.

This is a simple card with a few fun detailsto add some pizzaz.

Here is the recipe for this cute guy:
Dark Blue: Pure Luxury - In the Navy
Gray: Pure Luxury - Moonlit Fog
White: Pure Luxury - Pure White (layering weight)

Snowman: stamped in Memento Tuxedo Black; colored with Memento Markers: London Fog, Paris Dusk, and Lady Bug
Sentiments: Memento London Fog
Background: Cuttlebug "Snowflakes" folder
Ribbon & Brads: These are from the Gina K. Designs Summer Stamp TV Kit
Snow on ground and snowman's belly: Flower Soft - Polar White

I added crystal lacquer on the red heart to really make it stand out and a tiny bit on the berries on his hat. I added just a touch of "snow" on the ground and on his belly using Flower Soft's Polar White. If you haven't tried that stuff you really must -- it is so fun to play with!

This is a card that I could easily make in quantity for holiday cards this year, if I ever get around to getting started on that little project! LOL! I'm one of those people who waits until Thanksgiving and then realizes I'd better get a move on to get my cards done by the holidays! Some year I will have the time (and will get motivated) in July to start making my holiday cards but until that happens, I need cards like this snowman that are quick but fun to create.

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Holiday Mix

The brand new Stamp TV Kit is fabulous! It is filled with wonderful paper, ribbons and two stamp sets that will help you make a lot of holiday cards. I've had a great time trying out the stamps on various cards. I have two cards to share that were made with stamps from the two sets but they couldn't be more different!

The first one is simple but elegant card the would be an easy one to make in quantity and because it doesn't have a lot of thickness or embellishments, it would be easy to mail.

This card is made with the Pure Luxury All Spruced Up cardstock with a layer of Pure Luxury Ivory over it. I used the base weight of the Ivory because it takes the embossing so crisply. The embossing was done with the Cuttlebug "Holly" folder. The wreath was stamped with Memento Tuxedo Black, then was cut out and colored with Copics. I wanted the ribbon/bow on the wreath to stand out more than it did from just stamping it, so I stamped it again with Memento Brilliance Ivy ink, cut it out and layered it over the top of the original bow. The sentiment was stamped in the same Ivy ink and then I added the green ribbon, which comes from the Gina K Designs Holiday Assortment.

The second card from this set is quite a departure from my usual style but I had such fun with it! This card is much more whimsical and, dare I say, a bit on the wild side?! I used the cute little gingerbread house and tree from the Holiday Mix set to create this and the sentiment from Holiday Greetings, both sets are in the new holiday Stamp TV Kit. It kind of reminds me of the Dr. Seuss Whoville in How the Grinch Stole Christmas. See what you think!

The base layer of this card is Pure Luxury Chocolate Kiss and layered on top of that are two pieces of designer paper from Cosmo Cricket. The red is Riding Hood Red from Stampin' Up and the white is Pure Luxury Pure White layering weight. I stamped the house and sentiment in Memento Rich Cocoa and the tree stamp was colored with Memento markers. There are some decorations on the tree stamp, which I did in red but then I went through and added some extra red baubles with a red Spica pen. I colored the house with Copic markers and then added some glitz with Spica pens (red and green on the gumdrops, lollipop and along the roof edge. Then I used my glue pen on the white roof shingles, edging on the house, chimney, and white parts of the lollipop so I could sprinkle those parts with white glitter. The ribbons are both from Gina K Designs and the buttons are Basic Grey Bittersweet.

As you can see, the new holiday Stamp TV Kit is really versatile in its mix of stamps, and these cards only show a few of the options. You will love this kit, not only the stamp sets but the gorgeous papers, ribbons and brads you will find in the box. At $49.95 I think the set is truly a bargain because you will be able to make a lot of cards and gifts with it this holiday season.

Postage Stamps in Gold

The Special Delivery and Special Delivery Add-On sets were two I helped preview this past week on the preview blog hop. I shared one card on the blog hop but I made another that I am sharing with you tonight. I plan to make more cards like this one for my holiday greeting card list because it goes together quickly, looks good (if you don't mind me saying so! LOL!) and will mail easily because it doesn't have a lot of bulk to it.

The postage stamp block is from the Add-on set and as you can see, I stamped the whole block onto Pure Luxury Ivory base weight paper with Versamark and then embossed it with gold embossing powder. The red "Happy Holidays" circles are stamped with Vivid Dye Ink Brick Red and the snowflakes and cancellation lines are embossed in gold. I added red brads that came in the Stamp TV Kit in the middle of the the snowflakes for some extra interest. The ribbon is ivory with a line of gold thread on each side and can be found in the Holiday Assortment of ribbon from Gina K. The card itself is made from the gorgeous Pure Luxury Good as Gold and the red paper is Pure Luxury Rocket Red. The circle that is adhered to the ribbon is actually two layers but I don't know if you can see the tiny little gold scallops peeking out from behind the ivory circle. I used my Nestabilities petite scalloped circle to make that (the smallest one in the set) and the smallest plain circle for the ivory one.

Let me just take a moment to say that I think the Good as Gold paper is the prettiest gold paper I have every used and I love that it has some shimmer but is still easy to work with. Other shimmer papers I've tried in the past were very difficult to adhere things to. I would find that after a short time whatever was glued to it would fall off -- not so with this wonderful paper! If you like to work with metallic type paper, give this one a try. You won't be disappointed!