Thanks Card–With Patterned Paper

Good afternoon!  Today I’m playing along with Simon Says Stamp Monday Challenge – Use Patterned Paper.  I’ve been trying to reduce my stash of items that I’ve been hoarding and not using.  Patterned paper is one of those categories.  I’ve purged a lot, things I don’t like, know I won’t use, or the remnants of packs that I used my favorites out of already.  I cut my stash by about 1/3, but I still have a lot I intend to use.  This challenge is a perfect opportunity.

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Supplies:  Hammermill Digital Color Cover, My Mind’s Eye papers, Simon Says Stamp Die, misc bling and enamel dot, Copics YG97, R22

Wishing You A Happy Birthday

Shortly after 6×6 paper pads came to the market en masse, I began collecting them.  However, I tended to hoard them rather than use them.  After having had my collection for a substantial amount of time, I have made it my goal to use more patterned paper on my cards.  I really like white space (I mean white white space) so I find using patterned paper difficult.  I’ve been wanting to try a curved card, and knowing it would be a good way to use some patterned paper, I decided to use this design for the Simon Says Stamp Monday Challenge – Make A Wish.

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Supplies:
Simon Says Stamp Wishing stamp
Lawn Fawn Stitched Hillside dies
My Mind’s Eye
Misc – cardstock & glitter paper
Papertrey Ink ink
The Ton sequin

You Are A Blessing

I haven’t always been a fan of gold.  I always had preferred white metals.  In some ways I still prefer the white metals (like home décor in which I always choose stainless steel over brass), but I’ve learned to appreciate gold. 

For today’s card, I wanted to create something a little bolder than my normal items.  I wanted to achieve an elegant look as well, though.  I had just received this stamp set from The Ton and I was anxious to use it. 

I created this card and am linking it up to the Simon Says Stamp Wednesday Challenge – Anything Goes.  I keep hoping that Simon Says Stamp will sell The Ton stamps – I request them every time I see them ask on social media. 

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To create this card, I used my My Favorite Things background stripe stamp and my MISTI.  I stamped it several times with Versafine Onyx Black to get a good, dark impression.  Then I copied it once on my laser printer so I could use my Minc machine to foil it.  I applied a frame cut with Simon Says Stamp dual sided stitching dies, and watercolored the peonies with Zig Clean Color Real Brush markers. The stamp is from WPlus9, handwritten thanks.

Hey, What Are You Looking At?

I always enjoy finding new ways to create simple cards.  I like simple cards, that can be produced quickly.  When I need a very special card, I don’t mind taking a long time to make it.  (For me, long time is 1-2 hours).  Aside from those very special occasions, I like cards that I can easily make 3-5 of in less than an hour. 

I took this inspiration from Heather at housesbuiltofcards.blogspot.com.  I have to say, though, she totally rocked the idea better than I did!  I wasn’t really digging mine.  I think it’s mostly because the scallop die I used is too big.  This is the Lawn Fawn die, she used the Mama Elephant die.  I think I’m going to just have to buy that die.  Sigh.  (twist my arm, right?)

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Well, I began stamping these with the MISTI when I realized (five later) that I had made a big mistake.  So, I set out restamping the images on new cardstock.  I was just going to toss the images.  After completing this card, and not really digging it, I was ready to throw in the towel.  Then, I realized that I can make a teaching point out of my mistake, because it was a very good example, and one that I don’t tend to make.

I snatched up those mistaken stamped pieces and a couple markers to make the point.

Here goes.

What are you looking at?

Really.  It’s important.  Are you encouraged to look at the card, or off the card? 

What do I mean? 

Well, let’s look at the image again. 

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I was intentionally trying to get you to look at something.  Do you see an imaginary triangle on the card? 

Do you see how the ink blending makes a quasi-triangle?  And do you see the shape of the girl and the sentiment, how the outside points of each make a triangle?

That was intentional.  In design, we use something called a “visual triangle”.  Now, it’s not something that is really there, it’s just implied.  Sometimes it’s implied more directly than other times.  The visual triangle encourages the viewer to move their eye along the elements of the design and brings the focus to what you want to bring it to.  This is often achieved with embellishments such as sequin or rhinestones.  On this card, which is super simple, it is just the stamped images creating the triangle. 

Now, let’s take a look at my mistake and let me explain how the triangle can be utilized.

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See the puppy on top of the girl?  Where is the puppy looking?  Off the page.  The puppy is suggesting to us where we should look. 

But where do we want the viewer to look?  Not of the page, right?  We want them to look at the sentiment.

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Like this!  (Except this sentiment is also competing and messing us up). 

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This composition is confusing.  The puppy suggests us to look in a direction that we don’t want to look, as well as the sentiment being not lined up right. 

So, let’s see what we can do to improve this.

Knowing I wanted the puppy to look in and at the sentiment, I moved my stamps around.  I also lined the “hey” up on the closer side of the you.  This allowed the puppy to lead our eye right where I wanted it. 

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Look!  It follows the lines of the triangle.

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This composition is good.  It makes me happy and not confused.  Let’s be honest, I don’t need any extra help being confused.  o.O

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Thanks for joining me today and letting me share this.  (It’s one of my design “nails on a chalkboard” hangups – I know – I need to chill…lol)

Have a blessed day.

Supplies:
Neat and Tangled – stamp
Versafine Onyx Black ink
Hammermill Digital Color Copy
Lawn Fawn Guava paper
Distress Ink Abandoned Coral
Misc – hemp twine

You Are Such a Blessing to Me

I am usually discipined regarding purchases that aren’t practical.  Usually.  Unless we’re talking a few things.  Those items include Pioneer Woman kitchen stuff at Walmart (darn Ree, I mean, really…I’ve never ever been excited to buy dinner plates, glasses or kitchen towels before.  Those were always only an item of necessity, not fun), or stamps that include the word “bless” “blessing” or “blessed.”  I truly believe that all good things come from our Father above, and that He has bestowed abundant blessings upon us, blessings we do not deserve.  When I find a beautiful stamp set that allows me to tell others I appreciate them as the blessing they are, I’m doomed.  Sigh.  I hope the recipient is blessed, as I am blessed to know the person.

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(Linked up to Simon Says Stamp Wednesday challenge – Flowers)

Supplies:
MISTI
HoneyBee stamps
The Ton – sequin
Misc – vellum and cardstock
Versamark
Hero Arts Gold embossing powder
Pink Paislee paper (a very old paper from my stash)

Amazing Grace

Simon Says Stamp Monday challenge was to use a song as inspiration for a card.  Being as how I’m not musical, and I don’t really know the definition of favorite, I went with one of my many favorite songs.  And of course, my inspiration was in words themself.  I tend to be inspired by words more than symbols.

With some minor stamp surgery, I was able to use Amazing from a MFT stamp set, and the Grace from Neat and Tangled Bible Journaling stamp and come up with this card.  I even used patterned paper.  :$

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Supplies:
My Favorite Things
Neat & Tangled
The Ton – sequin
Lawn Fawn – scallop and stitched rectangle die
Distress ink
Wow embossing powder

Miss You

Color.  Good use of color doesn’t come naturally to me.  So I find the MFT Color Challenges to be very fun (and sometimes challenging) to pair good colors and expand my combination options.  I’m not sure I would have paired coral and plum on my own, but I really like them in this pairing.  So, I thought it would be fun to create a card with an image that was colored.  These colors seemed very girly to me, so I used a girly stamp.

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Supplies:
My Favorite Things – Miss you sentiment, Hybrid Black Licorice ink
Simon Says Stamp – Hot Mama hybrid ink, girl stamp
Neat & Tangled – sequin
American Crafts – gold glitter tape
Zig Clean Color Real Brush pens
Strathmore Bristol paper (I’ve been told this is the best for using Zig markers – I found the colors did NOT move on it – regardless of which side I used.  I’m sticking to my prefered Canson watercolor paper in the future as I found coloring this image extremely frustrating on this paper).

Stinkin’ Cute Critters

Slowly but surely.  I’m getting the hang of alcohol markers.  I have found that my skills improved immensely overnight when I purchased Copic markers (I think that’s more of a comment about the quality of Copics compared to other markers than my skills :p).  I have this silly little thing about always wanting to color the darkest parts (shadows) on top.  That would give the illusion of everything having light coming from the bottom.  Yeah, except for some exceptions, that’s not reality.  But today, I discovered if I rotated my image 180° so I was coloring upside down, it was much easier to color so the shadow appeared on the bottom.  I just have to figure out how to trick my brain.  ha!

Coloring doesn’t come naturally to me, but I find these Lawn Fawn images a great motivator.  They are, after all, so stinkin’ cute.  They somehow manage to continue to invade my stash even though “cutesy” isn’t really my style.  Since they manage to make a home in my stash, I have to use them.  Maybe, just maybe, in simple cards like this I’ll learn to happily color and use cutesy.

Until it comes naturally, external challenges are also helpful motivation.  This week, it came via the Simon Says Stamp Wednesday Critter challenge!

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Supplies:
Lawn Fawn stamp

SSS ink

DCWV foil vellum

American Crafts gold glitter tape

MISTI

My Favorite Things hybrid ink

Copic N0, N2, N4, N6, N8, 0, R32