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Saturday, 12 December 2015

Hyvää Joulua with peaceful pines!

This is a simple card with not too many stamps used on it.

 The card base is Cherry Cobbler, as well as the ink on the Finnish 'Hyvää Joulua' (merry Christmas) greeting. The background is embossed on Whisper White with Softly Falling embossing folder.

The tag is Crumb Cake and I stamped the 'ground' with Sheltering Tree stamp using Garden Green ink.
The tree is cut with the perfect pines framelit dies from a paper I bought few years ago from Finland (with Finnish Xmas greetings). The snow flakes are also from a generic snow flake stamp, as I needed small ones and I didn't find one from any current Stampin'Up! stamps I had (and all the retired sets are packed away in a card board box somewhere in the house)

Then I tied a piece of Crumb Cake seam binding with linen thread and that's all folks!

Twinkle twinkle little star

I got my inspiration for this card from Pinterest. 

I used single layer for my card, using the new thick whisper white card stock

I cut out a rough circle out of scrap paper to use as a stencil (didn't want it to be sharp edged).
Unfortunately Stampin'Up! does not have a great background scribble stamp, so I ended up using a generic scribble stamp (don't know where I got it and by whom it is made), but you could use any kind of background stamp, even the world map background stamp or the ledger stamp from The Open Sea would look great. I used Early Espresso ink for the scribble stamp and crumb cake on the Gorgeus Grunge stamp set.

Then I stamped the little star from Peaceful Pines with versa mark and embossed with gold embossing powder.

I cut the star with a framelit from corrugated paper and added couple of stars punched out of glimmer paper. Then tied thick bakers twine on the top of the star.

(Just realized that I took the pictures of the ONLY card where I dropped the scribble stamp after stamping, so it has a shadow scribble... Proofs that there are no mistakes in stamping... Just creative points of views - hahaha)

so easy and quick card to make!

Stamping with Woodland embossing folder

I love this technique, although it it a bit tricky and time consuming for me :-)


First, it is harder if you have old Big Shot cutting pads (curved), I had to run mine through couple of times and out a shim (piece of card stock) to get the inking on the edges too. The first 2 didn't get inked on the edges, this is why I made these versions (the greeting on these is in Finnish).
 

You get better results if you ink your colours with a sponge. I didn't have the time (?) for this, so I used my ink pads. You tend to get some streaks with them, but I didn't mind. 

The colours I used were Marina Mist and Night of Navy, those happened also to be the old felt type ink pads, so the streaks might have just be due to the pad type.

Make sure you ink the side where the tree trunks are indented (ink does not get to the groove) and then stamp your image with a darker colour. I used 'lovely as a tree' stamp set and Early Espresso ink. Make sure you stamp your image on the embossing folder the right way!! 
So you ink your embossing folder first (use lighter colour first) and last stamp your image on it.
Then place your card stock on the embossing folder, close it without moving your paper, and then run it through your Big Shot. Open carefully without moving the paper 

Clean your folder in between embossing the next one (if you do multiples).

Here is a ful image version (you can see the streaks)

Also, I realized it after embossing couple, pay attention where you stamp your image (trees), my first trees got all hidden behind the embossed trees (as you can see on the third picture) so stamp the trees where there is also visible ink, that way they get printed on the cardstock in between the embossed trees :-)

So enjoy these wintery scenes even though we seem to have a spring like weather outside! (I have new weeds coming out in my flower bed!!!)


Friday, 4 December 2015

Tips for using Archival, Memento and StãsOn inks

So, here are the facts and my experiences with these 3 inks

ARCHIVAL INK
The newest addition to the ink families is Archival Ink. It comes in Basic Black and Basic Gray.
This ink was mainly created as you can watercolour the images (vs. Memento Ink).

the ink is acid-free, fade-resistant, and archivally safe. The solvent ink is nontoxic and environmentally safe! Hurray!

You may notice a difference to Stampin'Up!s Classic ink pads when you open it. The stamp pads are made of linen, so they won't need to be re-inked as often. Do not use with nonporous materials like vellum paper as the ink will bleed (vs. StãzOn).

Does it stain? YES! Fast drying time means quick staining time - so clean your rubber stamps right away WITH StãzOn cleaner!!! With photopolymer stamps, stick to the regular Stampin'Mist stamp cleaner!

You will need to rub your stamp really well with this ink pad, specially after getting used to the light touch with the foam ink pads! So dig to your muscle memory and find the old felt pad inking technique :-)
Here are some samples of too light touch with Archival Ink

MEMENTO INK
this ink was mainly introduced due to the blendabilities markers, which were alcohol based, and would bleed with other alcohol based inks, like StãzOn. Since the blendabilities were withdrawn, I used the memento ink mainly as my regular black ink. Cleans nicely with just Stampin'Mist! This ink will bleed with watercolouring, or using blender pen so use only on it's own.

This ink pad is also fabric covered, so you will need to rub your stamp harder on the ink pad.
Also note, that the ink tends to sink down on the pad during storage, as it is not constructed like the Stampin'Up ink pads are (ink pad in facing down). I found the stamp inks easier and more evenly with Memento ink than with Archival Ink.

The biggest difference with Memento ink and Archival ink is how they stain your stamps. Well and the fact that the Memento is water based.

The smaller photopolymer stamp (not a Stampin'Up stamp, but same material) was used with Memento ink - no staining on the stamp. The larger was used with Archival Ink, and I used it several times without cleaning it in between and I could not get the ink stain off. Not even with StãzOn cleaner, so it really is permanent! The stamp still performs beautifully, but if you are obsessed about clean stamps, you might want to stay away of this ink :-)

STÃZON INK
StãzOn ink is permanent ink, and needs to be cleaned with StãzOn cleaner. This ink is great for watercolouring and can be used on nonporous surfaces. I have used this on plastic, glass and tiles (to make coasters).
NOTE! Stampin'Up! does not recommend using StãzOn with Photopolymer stamps (mainly because the cleaner will damage them, not so much the ink itself).

So ther is my analysis on these three inks.

The stamp set used in this experiment was by Mama Elephant

Wednesday, 2 December 2015

Kiddy cards

I love this Zoo Babies stamp set. 

I used a retired border embossing folder on the edge and some washi tape just above the embossing.
The washi on the left if from Sweet Lil' Things Washi and the one on the right is from Bohemian Washi

The zebra is stamped with black archival ink, the giraffe with crushed curry and the elephant with tip top taupe.
The ribbon is Crumb Cake seam binding.

I also made these cute baby cards using a retired 'baby's first' stamp set from about 10 years ago.


On the first card I used a size A clear block to stamp the coloured blocks and on the second I made a square mask and used the largest paint brush stamp from 'work of art' to stamp the coloured through the opening in the mask.

The colours on the squares are Pear Pizzazz, Pink Pirouette, Soft Sky and So Saffron
And I used the new thick whisper white card stock on these, they make perfect single layer cards!










Tuesday, 1 December 2015

You can never have too many birthday cards - right?

I find I'm always running out of Bday cards. So now when I make some, I try to make multiple of the same, sometimes using a bit different colours.

I usually give stacks of cards as Xmas presents for my family, so yesterday I noticed I didn't have enough birthday cards... So assembly line, here I come :-)

The ones above use all the same colours: Crushed Curry, Pool Party and Strawberry Slush.
The stamp set is Build a  Birthday, the washi tape is Cherry on Top
One of the cards has a small piece of retired Crushed Curry chevron ribbon, to mask an ink stain, but you know what they say? mistakes are an opportunity to embellish :)

Here is another card made using the same stamp set
The colours on this are Smoky Slate, Melon Mambo, Blushing Bride, Pink Pirouette and Very Vanilla
And a little bit of Wild Wasabi card stock punched out with bird builder punch.

The sentiments on all the cards are various Finnish stamps.

Wednesday, 4 November 2015

First try making a dress for an American Girl doll

Making all those dresses for my niece leaves me with all kinds of little fabric pieces. I thought maybe I could make some doll's clothes from them. 

My problem was that I wanted to make a dress for American Girl doll, but I don't have one :)
I researched the sizes online and figured I have one doll I had made 20+years ago so ai used that as my model.

I made this blue dress from 100% linen and added a floral pin, that can be removed and used on an other piece of clothing if so desired.

I gave the dress to my friend Patricia's daughter and she approved it so I guess I did okay :)

In the picture her doll is wearing the dress

Sunday, 18 October 2015

If the broom fits.... RIDE IT

I love this stamp set for Halloween!

I don't like things too spooky and busy and this is just perfect!

I stamped the brooms and the greeting first with Craft Whisper White ink and dried it with a heat gun (otherwise it will take LONG to dry).

Then I stamped the same image with Soft Suede. And on purpose didn't use stamp-a-majic so that I can get them a bit offset to create a shadow.

on this one I tried really offsetting the second stamping


I placed a piece of white corrugated card stock behind the image and used linen thread to embellish the card


Friday, 16 October 2015

Fall is coming... cannot compete with the real colours

So, instead I opted on making the card in Black, White and Crumb Cake :-)

I got the inspiration for this card from Pinterest

I stamped the Lighthearted Leaves with the new Archival Basic Black ink on Crumb Cake Card stock and coloured them with chalk marker. 

As you can see in this second picture, the chalk marker can go over the edges but it still looks sharp in the actual card.

The greeting is from 'A Dozen Thoughts' stamp set.

Sunday, 20 September 2015

If I had only known what I got myself into...

My beautiful niece turned 1 last week and we had already bought her a present but thought that she would really benefit from something that would have wheels (she is not yet walking but can stand up against a support)

I looked around.... Cars... Cars.... Nothing pretty or non-plastic :-(
So I went online to see if I could find something there. And I did!  A hedgehog! Cute as a button... But they only had a smaller size and I thought it to be quite expensive. So... Being handy and having s dad that is good at woodworking... I figured we could EASILY make one ourselves... Heh heh
Here is our inspiration 

So here is the process in pictures

At this point I realized I might have chewed a bit too large bite :-)
How on earth can I make this pile of fabric and bathroom rug to look like a hedgehog!!??
To me it resembled more of a beaver or water rat...

We covered the rod with plastic garden hose and made a leather sleeve from an old skirt

Final product!!!
And I have to say... It looks pretty darn good!!

And here is my darling niece riding the hedgehog... Note the cute hat I made for her too :-)








Sunday, 13 September 2015

Finland travels

Here are some pictures from my travels and stay in Finland

Chanterelles picked by my dad
Finnish pancake party

Restaurant on top of an old water tower by the sea

Turku castle

Mariehamn (Åland) harbour

Åland is demilitarized zone

Local high school in Mariehamn 

Enjoying late August evening at the cottage














Did some crafts!!!

As some of you know, I have been away most of the summer. First all July at the cottage in Sudbury and after that in Finland (I'm actually still there).
This time I chose not to bring my crafting tools with me, since I didn't really use them enough last year.

But I have done some crafts too - I made some cushions for log stools and made some little mushrooms with the remaining fabric and old wine corks
I used pin needles to adhere the hats on the corks.

Me and my mom also did some forest elves from felt and pine cones
And couple of little ballerinas too

I also made couple of tissue paper pompoms and a tissue paper leaf garland for my niece's 1st birthday party


I have worked on something else too, but cannot post it just yet (as it is a gift).

I have to say, I do miss my craft room and stamping! I have my fall stamps waiting for me when ai get back in about a week... Might take couple of days to get climatzed and unpacked, but I promise there will be more postings coming up!

Saturday, 27 June 2015

Sewing clothes for my little niece

So I have a little 9 month old niece. She is the cutest little thing.
I saw her first at her christening when she was just under 2 months old and then again when she was 4months.

Since then I have only seen her via Skype.
I wanted to make some dresses for he and so far she has received one reversible pinafore dress (see my post from June 4th)

Now I made an other reversible top and matching shorts

And 2 dresses with tie closures on the shoulders

Cannot wait to see her wear these



Thursday, 25 June 2015

Chalk Painting and old cabinet

We have this dining room set, that used to belong to Tom's grandmother. It has seen its best days and would need a new finish to make it look nice. Problem: the cost to refinish the whole set (cabinet, buffet, table and 7 chairs) would be over $2000 and we were told that if you'd like to sell it, you'd be lucky to get $300 for the whole set. So as you can see, not worth it.


So I did some research and figured out the easiest way to make them usable would be to chalk paint them. I chose to use Annie Sloan Chalk Paint. 

So far I have finished the cabinet. This will actually become our master bedroom linen cabinet.
I chose to use a green paint called Chateau Grey on the outside and Old White inside.
After the paint, I used clear wax on the top.