Paper Sweeties June Inspiration Challenge #44

Tuesday, May 31, 2016

We're at that place where my calendar says one month ends and the next begins, and that means a new challenge, from Paper Sweeties, to keep your creative juices flowing all month long.
I was inspired to pull out last month's new release goodies to create a Father's Day card for my hubby.
I started this card by stamping the bottom left corner of a piece of watercolor paper, in Jet Black ink, with the "Love you much Dad" sentiment.
Jake was then stamped, in Jet Black ink, just above the sentiment itself; watercolored; and dressed in a suit to match the color scheme, all created in the same way as Jake himself, hand-cut out, and embellished with a few white Gelly Roll pen polka dots.
I then trimmed its left side with a strip of feather, patterned paper, which brings in all the colors from the inspiration palette below, as well as a die-cut strip of an aqua, polka dot print and anchored them both with black-threaded, straight, machine stitching.  Everything was then splattered with the same aqua watercolor used previously, as well as Pure Black and Titanium White acrylic paint, before being adhered to a white, cardstock, card face and dressed up with a length of green ribbon, tied in a bow.
Further inspiration for this card came from Simon Says Stamp's Wednesday Challenge: Anything Goes...
and here's your Inspiration Challenge #44 graphic to get you going in the right direction.
Thanks so much for peeking in!  Be sure to stop by my temporary teammates' blogs, as well as the challenge link above to get all of your challenge details; and have a truly amazing June, friends!  Hugs!

Beth Luetschwager - WELCOME TO THE TEAM!  
Debbie Marcinkiewicz - Paper Sweeties
Jinny Newlin - *June Guest Designer* (You're here!)
June Guest Designer: Tracey Kelly 

{Supplies & Tools}
Stamps: Jake, So Sweet of You, & Best Dad (Paper Sweeties) Paper: White (Wplus9); aqua polka dots (Jillibean Soup); multicolored feathers (October Afternoon); watercolor (Canson Studio) Ink: Jet Black (Ranger) Other: black thread (Coats & Clark); sewing machine (Janome); Sweet Borders Sweet Cuts die (Paper Sweeties); Big Shot (Sizzix); watercolors (Kuretake); white Gelly Roll pen (Sakura); ribbon (SU!); Pure Black & Titanium White acrylic paints (FolkArt)

The Challenge #75

Monday, May 30, 2016

Happy Memorial Day, friends!  It's been such a beautiful weekend in our neck of the woods.  If we could get past everything being SUPER soggy and wet, it would've been perfect camping weather.  Although, Memorial Day weekends are usually really busy at the lake.  So, in general, we try to avoid them.  Anyway, I said last week that I've been busy wrapping up the school year with my kiddos and dealing with some personal issues.  So, because I just haven't had the time or really even felt like getting creative, Lesley has given me the week off to recoup.  But I couldn't leave you all hanging.  Here's our fabulous sketch Challenge #75, for Wild Card Week, over at The Challenge.
Be sure to stop by the challenge link above to see how the team was inspired.  You have until Sunday, June 5, 2016, at noon PST, to add your takes to the linky at that same challenge link above.  And don't forget to check out The Challenge #74 Winners, too.  Have fun with it, and thanks for hanging in there with me!

I was planning on being back with some inspiration, for you all, with the very next challenge; but because summers are such a busy time, the team has decided to take it off.  Don't you worry, though!  We'll be back rested and more ready than ever to bring you lots of creative inspiration in September.  Thanks for your understanding!  To those of you who aren't regular followers of my blog, have a blessed summer!  And to the rest of you wonderful people, I've got a brand spanking new, card/challenge combo scheduled to come your way tomorrow night.  Hope to see you then!  Hugs!

For the Love of Books

Sunday, May 29, 2016

Happy Sunday, y'all!  Just popping in, before we're out the door for church and May completely gets away from me, to share this month's For the Love of Books pick.  I can hardly believe school is over, and the lazy, hazy, crazy days of summer are upon us.  I thought it only fitting to pick a book celebrating such.  This one is written for children ages two to five and packed to the brim with such beautifully detailed, pencil and watercolor drawings, that they make it easy to get lost in its delightfully glorious, imaginary world.
Stella: Star of the Sea, written and illustrated by Marie-Louise Gay, tells the story of a sister and brother who couldn't be any more different.  Stella has been to the sea before, but "it was Sam's very first time."  Stella finds it beautiful.  Sam thinks it's "big and noisy."  Stella jumps right in, but Sam cautiously and pensively watches from the shore.  Stella "knew all its secrets," and Sam was full of questions about it.  "Is the water cold?  Is it deep?  Are there any sea monsters?  Where do starfish come from?"  Stella's imaginative answers to Sam's endless questions are sure to make its readers smile and drive Stella to a conclusive, "Sam!!  Are you ever coming in?", to which Sam responds with an exhilarated, "YES!", and a sprint for the sea.

Sam reminds me so much of my little bear right now.  His reply to literally EVERYTHING is "why?".  It can be a bit maddening at times, but I know he's still experiencing many things for the very first time.  Maybe he's as confused and circumspect as Sam and still trying to let go of our school-year routines and enjoy all the pleasures of summer.  I could learn a lot from Stella's patient replies.

Thanks so much for reading!  Throw all caution to the wind; let your hair down; and enjoy the summer sunshine, friends!  Hugs!

Friday Faves

Friday, May 27, 2016

Morning, friends!  So sorry that I've been absent this week.  We wrapped up our school year yesterday, and everything with that has been super hectic.  Plus, I've been dealing with some personal things that have just taken a lot out of me and are making me feel less creative.  I still wanted to stop in here to share a few things that have caught my attention this month, though, beginning with these absolutely gorgeous Sketchy Flowers from The Cat's Pajamas.  That sunflower totally stole this Kansas girl's heart.
The biggest portion of cards I create are to say thank you or happy birthday.  So, I'm always on the lookout for cute things to keep my creations new and fresh.  Reverse Confetti and Avery Elle checked the "happy birthday" off my list this month, beginning with Lift Me Up.  Those giraffes are just as cute as can be, and I love all the little, builder images and phrases wrapped up in this sweet number.
I'm diggin' on Wild Birthday for all the same reasons, not to mention that I adore that sweet, jungle banner!  Plus, these images would be perfect on a page boasting some of my family's hundreds of zoo pics.
The little Scottie dog, in The Scoop, totally makes the dog-lover in me smile.  Plus, I love that this one works for so many other occasions than just birthdays.
I know that I've included Method's 4x Concentrated Laundry Detergent in my Friday Faves lineup before; but when you find something this great, it's hard not to tell the world.  Y'all, this stuff has completely thrown my stain-fighting woes out the window and makes laundry days happy days.  There are a number of scents on the market; but right now, I'm loving Spring Garden.
Finally, I'm beginning to come to grips with the fact that I need something larger than your everyday, crossbody bag can offer.  I have a small handful of them, but once they're loaded with everything my family and I needs, they stick out funny on my hip, cause the strap to dig into my shoulder, and even pull my clothing in uncomfortable directions.  In my search for something that would continue to keep my hands free and still adequately carry all that I required of it, I came across Vera Bradley's Ultimate Alpine Floral Backpack.  If you're a fan of Vera Bradley like myself, you already know that there are a number of gorgeous prints to choose from in any and all styles of her bags; but I really love the femininity and free-flowing design of this particular one.  Oh, and the gingham print on the inside totally makes me happy!
That's all, for this month, friends.  Thanks so much for stopping by!  I'm off to get a little cleaning done.  Have a blessed weekend!  XOXO

The Challenge #74

Monday, May 23, 2016

Morning, y'all, and welcome to the work week!  We've got a fun, masculine, inspiration photo, over at The Challenge, to start things off right.  I was inspired to make a farm-themed card for my hubby's birthday next month.
I started this card by stamping all the individual images, carefully masking off a few before stamping, in Jet Black ink, on watercolor paper.  The "CELEBRATE you" sentiment, too, was stamped, in Jet Black ink, in the center of the heart.
I then sat back and just colored.  I cannot tell you all how much I'm enjoying my watercolors!  I feel like every time I get them out, I get a little braver.
The scene itself was then framed with both a little, Brilliant Blue cardstock and silver-threaded, straight, machine stitches, before being wrapped with a length of Charcoal twine, tied, in a bow, near the left edge of the prepped piece, and adhered, with foam tape, to the white, cardstock, card face.  A sprinkling of large and small, silver star and Sparkling Clear sequins, as well as a little Clear Wink of Stella for the heart and Glossy Accents for the balloon, complete the look.
Further inspiration for this card came from Simon Says Stamp's Monday Challenge: Make a Wish...
and here's this week's The Challenge #74 inspiration graphic to get you off and running in the right direction.
Be sure to stop by the challenge link above to see how the rest of the team was inspired.  You have until Sunday, May 29, 2016, at noon PST, to add your takes to the linky at that same challenge link above.  And don't forget to check out The Challenge #73 Winners, too.  Thanks so much for stopping by!  Have a magnificent Monday, folks!

{Supplies & Tools}
Stamps: Hogs & Kisses (Avery Elle); Birthday Celebration (Simon Says Stamp) Paper: white (Paper Studio); Brilliant Blue (SU!); watercolor (Canson Studio) Ink: Jet Black (Ranger) Other: silver thread (Coats & Clark); sewing machine (Janome); foam tape (Scotch); Glossy Accents (Ranger); Clear Wink of Stella (Zig); large silver star & Sparkling Clear sequins (Pretty Pink Posh); little silver star sequins (Hobby Lobby); Charcoal twine (The Twinery); watercolors (Kuretake)

The Studio Mood Board Challenge

Sunday, May 22, 2016

Happy Sunday, friends!  Just popping in to share my take on The Studio's newest challenge.  We've got a beautiful mood board to wet your creative appetites for the remainder of the month.  Here's how it inspired me.
I started this page by cutting the colorful mix of patterned squares from a Pink Paislee print and adhering them in a rectangular grid.  I then got a little messy with gesso and watercolors, sprinkling everything with the same watercolors used to create the pools, as well as Pure Black and Titanium White acrylic paints.  Once everything was dry, I used the squares as my base and built the foundation, from bottom to top, for my photo, which was matted with white cardstock, with the chipboard frame, wax envelope, and black stripe Polaroid.  The photo itself was then topped with another chipboard frame, as well as a foam, glitter arrow.
To the bottom right of the photo, I secured a "LIVE Colorfully" die cut.  A "dream" acrylic was tucked under the die cut's top right corner, and a "JUST BEGIN" cut-away phrase anchors it.
In moving counterclockwise, I tucked a "LIVE A colorful LIFE!" circle die cut under the top right corner of the photograph and added a tangle of silver thread; foam, glitter cloud; and cork "brave" and heart surrounding it.  I also stamped a "SHINE" circle and the "sky's the limit" phrase in Jet Black ink.
A colorful, floral acrylic rounds the top right corner of my focal point...
and guides us to the "you are my SUNSHINE" title, which was created with a stamped phrase and puffy Thickers.  A yellow, cut-away label, which I used to etch my January 7, 2015, date, was tucked under the right side of the largest chipboard frame; and a mix of stamped, die-cut, and cut-away words and phrases...
turn our attention to the "WONDERFUL DAY", acrylic tag, which was laced with white string, tied in a bow, and grounded with an "I LIKE YOUR SMILE", die-cut banner.
A few more cork bits, as well as a healthy scattering of sequins throughout, completes the look.
Further inspiration for this page came from Citrus Twist's May 15th Sunday Sketch...
And here's our Mood Board Challenge graphic to get you off and creating in the right direction.  Obviously, I was inspired by the "YOU ARE MY SUNSHINE" phrase in the bottom right corner, but I also pulled in the array of soft colors in the bottom left corner and the flowers from the top left.  The paint brushes and their trails of paint drew me to get a little messy with gesso, watercolors, and acrylic paints; and I couldn't resist adding plenty of shimmer and shine as inspired by the jars in the center.
You have until Sunday, June 5, 2016, to link up your takes, on this Mood Board Challenge and/or our Diamonds Challenge, in the right-hand column of The Studio blog.  Be sure to stop by the challenge link above to see how the rest of our talented team was inspired.  Thanks so much for stopping by!  Have a fantastic week, y'all!

{Supplies & Tools}
Stamps: "SHINE" circle & "you are my" (Citrus Twist); Hand Lettered Hello (Wplus9); Rainbow and Cloud Sentiments (Lil' Inker) Paper: white (Paper Studio); yellow circles (Citrus Twist); miscellaneous colorful squares (Pink Paislee) Ink: Jet Black (Ranger); Black PITT artist pen (Faber Castell) Other: silver thread (Coats & Clark); sewing machine (Janome); gesso (O'Leary Paint); watercolors (Kuretake); Pure Black & Titanium White acrylic paints (FolkArt); sequins, yellow cut-away label & phrases, wax envelope, & cork bits (Citrus Twist); foam glitter cloud & arrow & Starlight puffy Thickers (American Crafts); "LIVE Colorfully" die cut (Dear Lizzy); chipboard frames (Becky Higgins); acrylic bits & "memories", "I LIKE YOUR SMILE", & " LIVE A colorful LIFE!" die cuts (Paige Evans); white string (Hobby Lobby); black stripe Polaroid (Pink Paislee)

The Best Is Yet to Come

Friday, May 20, 2016

Morning, y'all!  I've got my big kiddos busy with their studies, and Kaden is watching his 15 minutes of Curious George.  So, I've got a spare second, between loads of laundry and getting the bathrooms cleaned, to share the card that accompanied lots of clothes and the sweet, little bunny, which I shared yesterday, for my new niece.  Enjoy!
I started this card by piecing a split column of a floral print near the left edge of a pink and red, stripe, patterned paper and anchoring a slightly smaller piece of vellum, which was stamped, in Jet Black ink, with the "THE Best IS YET TO COME" sentiment, over both layers.
Everything was then splattered with both Pure Black and Titanium White acrylic paints, before being anchored, with white-threaded, straight, machine stitches, to the white, cardstock, card face and wrapped with a length of Baker's Twine, tied, in a bow, near the top edge.
The palm branch image was then stamped in Wild Wasabi ink and watercolored; before it, too, was splattered with acrylic paints, as well as a little, green watercolor.  A rounded rectangle die was used to partially cut out the branch.  I then hand-cut around the bits protruding from the rectangle's dimensions.  The koala and all the blooms were then stamped, in Jet Black ink, on their individual, watercolor paper die cuts; watercolored; and adhered, with foam tape, in their respective positions.  A little Glossy Accents, for the koala's nose, completes the look.
Inspiration for this card came from Reverse Confetti's Sketch For You to Try #36...
Simon Says Stamp's Work It Wednesday: Flowers...

 and  House of Cards' May Challenge: Clear Papers.
Okay, my 15 minutes are up ;).  We've got tomorrow morning off to relax, because soccer season is officially over; but we'll be off to the ball fields in the afternoon.  Ezekiel's baseball team brought home another win last night, and we're hoping for the same again tomorrow.  Thanks so much for stopping by!  I hope your weekend is extra blessed!

{Supplies & Tools}
Stamps: Bear Hugs (Reverse Confetti); Woodgrain Silhouettes Additions (Wplus9); The Best Is Yet to Come (Heidi Swapp) Paper: white & vellum (Paper Studio); stripe (Fancy Pants); floral (Jenni Bowlin); watercolor (Canson Studio) Ink: Wild Wasabi (SU!); Jet Black (Ranger); Jet Black (StazOn) Other: white thread (Coats & Clark); sewing machine (Janome); foam tape (Scrapbook Adhesives); Clear Cut Stackers: Rounded Rectangles die (Wplus9); Bear Hugs Confetti Cuts die (Reverse Confetti); watercolors (Kuretake); Pure Black & Titanium White acrylic paints (FolkArt); Glossy Accents (Ranger); Baker's Twine (Clean Country Paper Supplies)

Playing with Fabrics

Thursday, May 19, 2016

Afternoon, y'all!  I just wanted to pop in to share a little something different with you all, while Kaden is resting and my big kiddos are busy with their seatwork.  My brother and his wife are expecting a little girl in July, and they had a baby shower last weekend.  I wasn't able to attend due to Adina's end-of-season, soccer double-header, as well as the distance it was held from our home.  Honestly, I was uber bummed that I wasn't asked to help with the whole thing.  Computer-generated and printed invites were even sent out, when they've got me.  Ack!  I hate being left out, but everything is said and done now.  So, I poured my heart into this simple, little, handmade cutie with hand-stitched features.
I followed Melly Sews' Easter Bunny Tutorial with the exception of swapping out her yarn tail for a fluffy one made from the same soft, white chenille as the bulk of the bunny itself; and I loved that it matched the clothing/pajama sets and sleep sacks I sent, too!
I'll pop back in tomorrow to share the card that accompanied it.  Until then, thanks so much for humbling me with a visit, and have a blessed evening!  Hugs!

The Challenge #73

Monday, May 16, 2016

Happy Monday, y'all!  Just popping in with my take on a beautiful, new, inspiration photo up at The Challenge.  Oh, and I hope y'all aren't minding my new setting for taking photos of my creations.  I'm having the most difficult time getting just the right lighting, even with a new lighting system, in my creative space lately.  So, for the time being and since the weather has been beautiful, I've given up and taken my projects outdoors.  Anyway, here goes.
I started this card by inking Peeled Paint Distress Ink, through a fern stencil, onto a piece of pink, blocked, patterned paper.  I then trimmed its left edge with a strip of its "XOXO" reverse print, before splattering it with the same color of watercolor, mixed to paint the cup, as well as Pure Black and Titanium White acrylic paints.  Once it was dry, I anchored it, to the white, cardstock, card face, with black-threaded, straight, machine stitching.
The tag was die-cut from vellum; stamped, in Jet Black ink, with the "just wanted to espresso MY THANKS" sentiment; dressed up with a Pink Pirouette cardstock, tag topper; laced with waxed chord; and secured, to the card face, with more black-threaded, straight, machine stitching.  It was further embellished with a mug and butterfly.  The prior was stamped, in Jet Black and Baked Brown Sugar inks, on watercolor paper; watercolored; hand-cut out; popped off the card face, just above the sentiment, with foam tape; and given lots of shine with Glossy Accents for the espresso itself.  The latter was white-embossed on vellum; hand-cut out; and adhered, to the edge of the mug, just at its center point.
A length of seam binding ribbon, tied in a double bow and embellished with a gray, velvet bow and pearl, as well as a sprinkling of sequins and bit of Clear Wink of Stella for the subtle hearts on the pink, block print, completes the look.
Further inspiration for this card came from House of Cards' May Challenge: Clear Papers.  Ladies, please don't feel as though you must leave me a comment.  I know that y'all are busy and that I've already entered a number of projects into your challenge.  Clear paper, especially vellum, is kind of my thing; and I've just been having fun with it.
Here's this week's The Challenge #73 graphic to get you off and running in the right direction.  That fern, right in the center of the setting, totally captured my eye.  I was also inspired by the color palette, as well as the coffee cup, velvet trim, butterfly, and sequin spill.
Be sure to stop by the challenge link above to see how the rest of the team was inspired.  You have until Sunday, May 22, 2016, at noon PST, to add your takes to the linky at that same challenge link above.  And don't forget to check out The Challenge #72 Winners, too.  Thanks so much for stopping by!  Have a wonderful week, y'all!

{Supplies & Tools}
Stamps: Be a Barista (Reverse Confetti); Flora & Fauna I (Wplus9) Paper: Pink Pirouette (SU!); white & vellum (Paper Studio); pink block & "XOXO" (Crate Paper); watercolor (Canson Studio) Ink: Jet Black & Peeled Paint (Ranger); Baked Brown Sugar (SU!); Jet Black (StazOn) Other: black thread (Coats & Clark); sewing machine (Janome); foam tape (Scrapbook Adhesives); Topped Off Tag & Bubbly Tag Toppers Confetti Cuts dies (Reverse Confetti); Big Shot (Sizzix); Clear Wink of Stella (Zig); waxed chord (Hobby Lobby); velvet ribbon (unknown); seam binding ribbon & sequins (Paper Sweeties); pearl (Paper Studio); watercolors (Kuretake); Glossy Accents (Ranger); Zing! white embossing powder (American Crafts); Pure Black & Titanium White acrylic paints (FolkArt); Mini Fern stencil (Crafter's Workshop)

Paper Sweeties May Release Rewind

Sunday, May 15, 2016

Today's the day, folks!  Everything you've seen here and throughout my temporary teammies' blogs are now available in the Paper Sweeties Boutique; but before you're off to picking up your May goodies, if you haven't done so already, I've got one more creation to share.  Enjoy!
I started this card by stamping a piece of floral, patterned paper, in Jet Black ink, with the "SUIT UP!  We're Having a Party" sentiment and trimming its bottom edge with a wide strip of yellow, striped, patterned paper.
I then framed them both with a slightly larger piece of Barely Banana cardstock and anchored them with gold-threaded, straight, machine stitching, before they were adhered, to the white, cardstock, card face, with foam tape.
The cake was stamped, in Jet Black ink, on a watercolor, paper die cut; watercolored; embellished with Sugar Sprinkles sequins, from the Paper Sweeties Boutique, and yellow seed beads...
and set, with foam tape and at a playful angle, on a makeshift, die-cut table.  The table was created with the scallop edge and curly line from the new Sweet Borders Sweet Cuts die set.  To change the scallops from four to three, I simply die-cut it from a navy, gingham, patterned print.  I then lined that same die back up with the resulting die cut, with the exception of skipping the first scallop, and put it back through my Big Shot to create a table cloth, and the curly line was simply die-cut from white cardstock and cut in half to form the garden table legs.
Further inspiration for this card came from ScrapMuch?'s May Colour Challenge...
and Simon Says Stamp's Work It Wednesday: Flowers...
as well as their Wednesday Challenge: Flowers.
And here's that May Release lineup, including Debbie's Plan Your Life Series newbie, in all its glory.  Just click on each individual image to be taken directly to its purchasing point.
http://papersweeties.com/shop/sweeties-friends/best-dad/
http://papersweeties.com/shop/accessory-stamp-sets/sweet-borders/
http://papersweeties.com/shop/all-products/sweet-cuts-sweet-borders/
http://papersweeties.com/shop/all-products/planner-series-checklist/
We'd also love to see you use your Paper Sweeties goodies by playing along with the current May Inspiration Challenge #43.
Thanks, as always, for stopping by and leaving me such kind and encouraging comments throughout this release!  Debbie has asked me to fill in for an absent team member next month.  So, I'm extending my stay just a wee bit longer.  I hope that's okay with you all.  Of course, I'll have plenty to share until the next release; but if you're not a regular follower of my blog, first and foremost, I hope you'll consider becoming one, but I'll also look forward to seeing you then.  Be blessed!

Debbie Marcinkiewicz - Paper Sweeties
Jeri Thomas
Jill Norwood
Jinny Newlin - *May Guest Designer* (You're here!)

{Supplies & Tools}
Stamps: You're Invited, Party Time, & Best Dad (Paper Sweeties) Paper: white (Paper Studio); Barely Banana & yellow stripe (SU!); floral (Jillibean Soup); navy gingham (Nikki Sivils); watercolor (Canson Studio) Ink: Jet Black (Jet Black) Other: gold thread (Coats & Clark); sewing machine (Janome); foam tape (Scrapbook Adhesives); Bubblegum seam binding ribbon, Sugar Sprinkles sequins, Sweet Borders & Party Time Sweet Cuts dies (Paper Sweeties); Big Shot (Sizzix); pearl (Paper Studio); seed beads (Hobby Lobby); watercolors (Kuretake)