modified herringbone card – video tutorial

Herringbone card by KittyAt last!  I think I finally have a real, honest-to-gosh, video card tutorial for you.  I think, LOL.  I am absolutely positive, though, that I have a new-found respect for my card-making idols.  Oh my gosh!  If I had known how much work this would be, I don’t think I ever would have started.  But once I did, I was bound and determined to see it through.  (No thanks to my dead micro SD card!)  Anyway, if you’d like to see me totally botch a “modified herringbone card tutorial”, here you go:

I’m calling this a “modified” herringbone pattern because I made a small change from the original version (and by original, I mean the first version I personally saw… I suspect there are a gazillion different versions out there now).  I actually did a tutorial on this once before, with just photos.  (Absolutely horrific photos!  Believe me, you don’t want to see it.)  Since then, I’ve played around with this pattern, and learned a few things:

– 6×6 patterned papers, in general, work better than 12×12, just because the patterns are smaller – but there are exceptions.

– If you use a “close color match” for your base when assembling the pattern, then any tiny gaps virtually disappear.

– If you use papers all from the same color family, it will almost certainly look nice and clean.  However, you can mix up nearly any combination of patterned papers by using some technique to pull them together, such as inking all the edges, sanding all the edges, or as I’ve done here – placing tiny strips of the same color cardstock between each patterned piece, and then matting the whole thing with that same cardstock.

– It’s fun to experiment!  And this doesn’t just apply to the herringbone pattern.  You’ll never know if something is going to work unless you try.  Different colors, different patterns, different sizes, different embellishments… just go for it.  And if you do, please let me know – I’d love to see what you come up with!

And above all, have fun.  Life is meant to be enjoyed.  Thanks for stopping by, and have an awesome, crafty, fun-filled day!

Supplies (some affiliate links used – see here for full disclosure.  Some items available from multiple sources.  SSS=Simon Says Stamp,


coloring book – page to card…

Home, Heart card by Kitty

… or “how NOT to record a YouTube card tutorial”, LOL.  You see, this post didn’t go exactly as planned.  It was supposed to include a video… but despite several tries, I keep getting messages that my video is corrupt.  Clearly, I still have a LOT to learn before I become a YouTube sensation.  🙂

So, no video, but I figured I should share the card, anyway.  A big part of the reason I love making cards is that I get to give them away.  My little slogan – Dream it, Make it, Share it – that *share* part is really important to me.  🙂  So, when I started getting hooked on these new “coloring books for adults”, I felt sort of guilty.  There is absolutely NOTHING wrong with coloring for the pure pleasure of it.  It’s a positive exercise – it helps to work your creative muscles, and it reduces stress.  But for me, I just needed it to have more of a purpose.  (I’m still recovering from my mid-life crisis, I guess… trying to “find my purpose in life”, and all that jazz.)

When I mentioned this, a good friend of mine (thanks Louisa!) asked why I couldn’t just turn the coloring pages into cards.  Brilliant!  So, the end result is that card you see above, but it started out like this:Folk Art coloring book page(I should probably note that you should never try to “steal” these images, or take credit for the actual drawing.  These artists work hard and deserve credit for their artwork.  I don’t sell any of my cards, and I’m only using the original, purchased copy of the page.)

I have this Folk Art coloring book, by Lisa Congdon, that’s full of fun, playful images.  This one page in particular caught my eye.  The design on it is repeated four times, which means that a single image is pretty much exactly the size of a standard A2 card (4-1/4″ x 5-1/2″).  I played around a bit, and came up with a color scheme I was happy with.  I cut out that single image, and trimmed it just  a little bit smaller than an A2.  I adhered it to a pink card base, and added a stamped sentiment with a bit of foam for dimension.

This was a REALLY easy, simple card.  I didn’t do any blending – it’s just Prismacolor pencils.  I didn’t add any glitter, or gel pen accents.  There are two reasons for that.  First, I kind of felt like the casual coloring style fit the primitive design.  And second, I thought something quick and easy would be best for my first video tutorial.  Hahahaha.  Oh well… nice idea, anyway.

So, what did I learn today?  First, it is actually possible to make a card using a coloring book page. Second, recording videos is harder than I thought, LOL.  Next time, I will make a version of the card before I record, as sort of a dress rehearsal.  I will have a better idea what I want to say, so I don’t end up with a million “ummm…’s”, and/or dead air.  I will practice recording short bits to make sure I have everything on the camera set up correctly.  I will stop and start a number of times so that I have clean breaks, and hopefully so that if part of the video doesn’t work, maybe I won’t lose the whole thing…

Or I will leave the whole mess to the professionals, and go back to my “day job”, LOL.  What do you think?  Should I give it another shot?

Thanks for stopping by, and have a wonderful day!

Supplies I used for this card (includes some affiliate links – see full disclosure here.  SSS=Simon Says Stamp and AMZ=Amazon):


get in shape

Shaped card by Kitty 7-19-15

No, I’m not suggesting y’all exercise, LOL (though I could certainly use a bit more of that myself).  My title is actually the current theme for Simon Says Stamp’s Wednesday Challenge.  The idea is to make a non-traditionally-shaped card.  I’ve been making an effort to keep up with the Wednesday Challenges, but I must confess that I almost wimped out on this one.  I’m not quite sure why, but I’m intimidated by shaped cards.  In fact, other than a single “square” card, this is the first odd-shaped card I’ve ever made.  Of course, that means I’m LONG overdue.  🙂

I started with my largest scalloped circle die, and cut it out of heavy-weight white cardstock.  I stamped the leaf pattern in green, and then filled in the leaves with Prismacolor pencils.  The flowers were all individually stamped in three shades of Hero Arts Shadow Inks, and then covered with a bit of Wink of Stella for some subtle shimmer.  (If there’s a way to get that “subtle shimmer” to show up on camera, I haven’t found it yet.)   I also inked the edges in green.

The sentiment was die cut, as were the tiny butterflies.  I also cut the butterflies out of plain white fun foam, layering the cardstock pieces on top, to give them some dimension.  I then covered them with a little Star Dust Stickles, so they’d stand out a bit, even from the glittery flowers.

To form the card, I used a die to cut a plain circle just a little bit smaller than the scalloped one.  (In hindsight, I think I could have done this with another same-sized scalloped circle, but this just seemed to make sense at the time.)  I scored the top of the plain circle and folded it, applied a strong adhesive to the small folded piece, and then attached it to the scalloped circle, like this:Shaped card by Kitty 7-19 insideThis isn’t one of my favorite cards, but I’m glad I faced my fear of odd shapes.  This one should give me the courage to try it again, perhaps with something a bit more unique.  (I’ve always been a bit too “square”, LOL.)

By the way, I am working on making some video tutorials.  I LOVE watching other card YouTube vids – it’s a great way to learn.  Mine might be a bit more like “what not to do”, LOL, but I’m going to give it a shot, nonetheless.  If you have any tips, suggestions, or requests, please let me know.  Just think – if you start following me now (links on the top right), you can say you “knew me when”… someday… when I’m an accomplished, beloved, world-famous card-maker.  Hey, if you’re going to dream, you might as well dream big.  🙂

Thanks for stopping by, and have an awesome day!

Supplies I used to make this card (some of these are affiliate links – see here for full disclosure.  SSS=Simon Says Stamp,

dream it. do it.

Hello flowers on Kraft - Kitty

I’m afraid I got a little bit behind this week.  Dentist said “Don’t worry, this will be a piece of cake.  Just two wisdom teeth to pull, 5 minute extraction, you won’t even need a painkiller afterward.  Back to normal in no time.”   Well, it didn’t exactly go like that, LOL.  But he DID end up giving me some painkillers, so we’re all good now.  If this post all sounds like gibberish, though, you’ll know why.  😉

The card I posted above is one I actually completed a couple of weeks ago.  It’s very similar to another one I posted here, only I made everything bigger.  I just love the look of Prismacolor pencils on Kraft cardstock!  I also did more work on this one, adding highlights with a white gel pen, and adding a bit of sparkle to the flowers with my Wink of Stella pen.

I really like how the greeting came out.  I created it by die-cutting plain Kraft paper first.  Then, I left the word in the “negative space” – I didn’t separate it right away.  This made it much easier to color.  I just used pencils on this – it’s blended entirely with the pencils themselves.  I’m not quite sure why, but I really think that the pencils blend better on Kraft than on white cardstock.

For the flowers, I printed them on Kraft (they’re from a digi-stamp set by Meljen’s Designs), colored them, added highlights, fussy-cut them out, and inked the edges.  Then I adhered them to the card, only putting glue on the center, and rounding the petals a bit for some dimension.  The orange flower is attached with foam.

Experimenting with different coloring tools on different types of paper can produce surprising results.  It doesn’t have to be all white paper.  And it doesn’t just have to be for cards.  Thanks to the big trend of coloring books for adults, there are now lots of really great designs available for free – ones you can download from the Internet, and print them out on any kind of paper you’d like.  That’s what I did here.  I found a freebie coloring page on the Internet, and printed it on Kraft cardstock (design by Dawn Nicole, available as a freebie here):Dream it, do it - Kitty

I colored the image, and then added highlights again, with both black and white gel pens.  There’s also some glitter on the hearts from my Wink of Stella.  This was loads of fun, and easy, too!  Anyone can look like an artist if you have a nice design to work with.  In fact, you don’t even need to stay in the lines!  Some techniques create a softer, more casual look while intentionally “not” staying inside the lines.

What’s your favorite cardstock to color on?  Are there any you’d like to see me try?

One of my favorite Disney quotes is “If you can dream it, you can do it.”  I had that up on my wall in our old house.  This is pretty close, so I may hang it up here, as a reminder:  don’t let yourself down with wimpy dreams – dream BIG!  Thanks for stopping by, and have a bright and colorful weekend!

Supplies (some affiliate links used.  SSS=Simon Says Stamp, AMZ-Amazon.  Full disclosure here):

a bashful craft room tour

Kit Desk 7-12-15Well, it’s official – I have completely lost my marbles.  I have just taken a giant leap outside of my comfort zone, and recorded my first YouTube video.  And yes – I’m even in it!  I don’t have a top-of-the-line camera, I don’t have any experience… I don’t have any idea what I’m doing, LOL… but all of my card-making idols have videos, so I just had to give it a try.  So, without further ado, here is a “bashful” tour of my new craft room:

I must confess that my craft room rarely looks like this.  I tend to make a HUGE mess when I’m crafting.  I did a massive clean-up before I filmed this.

I’ll add a couple of photos here, too, for those who don’t want to sit through the really amateur video.  That’s cool – I don’t want to watch it either, LOL.  The picture at the top of the post shows my desk.  It’s the place where I do most of my coloring.  Yes, there are more than a few Disney items… I’m slightly obsessed.  The cards on top of the cabinets are all ones that I have received.  I have been blessed with a few very special friends.  🙂

This next one is a picture of my craft table.  It’s really a Martha Stewart kitchen island, purchased on sale at K-Mart several years ago.  (The top was replaced by my amazing husband – the original one was warped.)  On the right, you’ll see my Sizzix Vintaj Big Kick (yes, it looks different, but it’s exactly the same thing as a Big Shot).  On the left, I keep my guillotine paper cutter.  Yes, I do occasionally worry about injuring myself, but this is the first cutter I’ve used that actually cuts straight.  So far, no injuries – I’m very happy with it.

Kit craft table 7-12-15This next one shows the awesome shelf unit my hubby built for me.  I love baskets, so there are a lot of them.

Kit shelves 7-12-15And, while not really relevant, I just have to add this shot of my window, just because I am so excited to really have a palm tree right outside my craft room!  (Have I mentioned how much I love Florida?)Kit window 7-12-15So, that’s it for today’s post.  I’m now going to go hide in a closet until the curious onlookers have forgotten about my video.  Seriously though, if you have any questions, or any advice, please don’t hesitate to leave a comment, or to click Contact Kitty and send me an e-mail.  I can use all the help I can get!  (And if you find my marbles, will you let me know?)

Thanks for stopping by, and have a wonderful day!

In lieu of a supply list this time, I’m including links to a few of the tools and storage items I showed in my video.  If I missed something, and you’re curious, just let me know!  (Some affiliate links used – see full disclosure here.  SSS=Simon Says Stamp,

furry and feathered friends

Furry, feathered friends by Kitty 7-9-15

I’m calling this card Furry and Feathered Friends, but given that our furry feline is hiding in the flower box, I’m beginning to think he might not see “friends” so much as “lunch”, LOL. I don’t think those birds have too much to worry about, though.  My cats might like to occasionally chase something, but they’re not so good at catching it.  🙂

This week, Simon Says Stamp is featuring Newton’s Nook stamps, and the Wednesday Challenge topic is FURRY FRIENDS.  The stamp set I wanted to use does have a cat in it, but he’s sleeping on some pumpkins, and I’m just not quite ready to work with pumpkins this year.  It feels too much like summer.  (Don’t ask how I’m going to handle this year’s holiday cards – if I wait for it to get cold in Florida, they could end up being very, very late, LOL.)

My card was a little more involved than I planned, but it was fun to put together.  I used some Persimmon paper from My Favorite Things for the base.  (Yeah, I know… it’s orange.  Maybe I should have stuck with the pumpkins after all.  Actually, my hubby thinks the apples look like pumpkins.  I think the color of the card base must be making my reds looks more orange.)  I then took a piece of cream cardstock cut just a bit smaller, and used a background stamp with Sand-colored ink to give it a bit of interest.

The images on the card are a combination of things, all stamped on white card-stock, colored with Prismacolor pencils, blended with odorless mineral spirits, and fussy-cut. I started with the Newton’s Nook wagon stamp.  The wheels are popped up with foam and coated with a silver Wink of Stella pen.  The apples have a coat of Glossy Accents.  The cat is actually a digi-stamp from Sliekje’s Digi Stamps (she has lots of wonderful free images, including lots of cats  >^..^<).  I added some clear Wink of Stella to the flowers, and three of them are stamped twice and popped up with more foam.

The bird on the die-cut tree branch is from Hero Arts stamp, and the greeting is a die-cut.  I felt like the card needed a third bird, but I wanted him facing the other direction, and I couldn’t find any stamps that seemed to work.  I decided to try a little something unconventional.  There are much better ways to do this, by creating a sort of “transfer”, but I decided to see if I could just fake it.  I took another copy of the bird from the apple wagon, fussy-cut him out, and then flipped him over.  I colored him, and added accents with a very thin black pen.  The legs and feet I also drew by hand.  I then popped him up with more foam, and decided to have him stand on the edge of the greeting.  He’s far from perfect – I came close to trashing him and coming up with something else – but in the end, I decided maybe it was good that he wasn’t quite perfect – it made him look a little less like his twin.

Wishing all of my friends – furry and feathered, four-legged and two-legged – a beautiful summer day!  Thanks for stopping by!

Supplies (some affiliate links used.  Where two merchants are listed, SSS indicates Simon Says Stamp and AMZ indicates  See full disclosure here):


happily ever after

Wedding card by Kitty 6-21-15

A Happily Ever After wedding card

I’m afraid I struggle with wedding cards.  I think it’s because I feel like they should be really classy and elegant, and that’s not my usual card style. And I feel a stronger need for perfection – like I’m being judged on a different scale with these.  Probably silly… or maybe not.  The rare occasion when I need one of these, it’s often for someone who doesn’t really know about my craft and may – or may not – appreciate the handmade touch… which is probably a topic for another post.  (Some people just don’t “get” cards, you know?)  This one is for a friend’s daughter.  I imagine she isn’t expecting much from us, so hopefully it will do.

But anyway, I stuck with white on white, with some silver and sparkle, for this wedding card.  I started with the largest Decorative Labels Eight die from Spellbinders, and used a more plain die to cut an opening in the center.  I stamped some flourishes on this die-cut piece with VersaMark ink, and embossed them with some iridescent sparkle embossing powder.  The design is subtle, but absolutely gorgeous when it hits the light.

The sentiment was heat-embossed in silver.  I struggled with it for quite some time (the words, not the silver embossing), even Googling the proper thing to say on a wedding card.  I don’t have any wedding-specific stamp sets (yet), but I could have gone with “Congratulations”, or “Best Wishes”.  They just sounded so unimaginative, though. Of course, I guess it shouldn’t be too surprising that I chose a more “fairytale” sentiment, LOL.

For the center, I used a piece of heavy vellum, and stamped/heat-embossed two hearts in silver.  I’m a little disappointed with this part – this is actually a shaker card, but since I was trying to stick with “subtle”, I used some pretty plain glitter inside the shaker.  It had a ton of sparkle, but you really can’t see that through the vellum.  If i try this design again, I’ll either use something more noticeable inside the shaker, or I’ll just forget the whole shaker idea.

The card base is the same heavy-weight white cardstock, but before adding the die-cut piece with foam, I sprayed it with some shimmer spritz (front and back) for a subtle, all-over shimmer.  I rounded the corners, and decided to call it done.

Hmmm… I used the word “subtle” a lot, didn’t I?  I think in my attempt to achieve “classy”, I might have ended up with just plain boring, instead.  What do you think?  Too plain, or just right?

Thanks for stopping by!  Wishing you all Happily Ever Afters!

Supplies (some affiliate links used.  Where two merchants are listed, SSS indicates Simon Says Stamp and AMZ indicates  See full disclosure here):

this one’s a little spotty

SSS Dotty Challenge 7-3-15 bashfulcatI had fun making this card… but not so much photographing it.  I’m lucky it doesn’t have bite marks in it, because my camera strap does.  (According to Timber, the world revolves around Timber.  Cards, schmards, LOL.  Either that, or he’s mad that this one featured a dog instead of a cat.)  This card is for the Simon Says Stamp Wednesday Challenge, called We’re Going Dotty!

You know, in hindsight, maybe I should have put the spots on the dog, LOL, but given that this card has spots (or dots) all over it, that might have been overkill.  I love coloring little animal stamps, but I struggle with things like spots and stripes – I need some more practice.

Anyway, for this card, I started with a bit of Basic Grey patterned paper from their Mint Julep collection, and found some cardstock to go with it.  The dog was stamped a few times on white, colored with Prismacolor pencils, blended with OMS, the edges were inked, and the nose & eyes were touched up with a black Sakura Glaze pen.  I fussy-cut the head out and popped it up with foam on another body, which was die-cut into a circle.  I added a heart with some Liquid Pearls, and matted it on a lacey circle die-cut.  The cute puppy and the sentiment are both from the same Simon Says Stamp clear stamp set, called Circle Friends.  I added a bit of “rick-rack” die-cut paper and dotted it with a bit of Enamel Accents.  Just a Dotty little card.

Thanks for stopping by, and have a wonderful day!

Supplies used (some affiliate links included, see full disclosure here):


a happy cat card

Cat with yarn card 7-1-15I don’t buy matching stamp and die sets very often, but I just couldn’t resist this one from Papertrey Ink!  When I was putting this card together, I wanted more than just one ball of yarn… I envisioned a whole basket full.  (I’m pretty sure that knitters are a bit like paper-crafters – they probably collect yarn like I collect paper.)

I started by die-cutting the cat, and then a whole bunch of balls of yarn.  That’s how I usually do it – die-cut the paper first, then line up the stamp on top… but the truth is, I’m just not very good at lining these things up.  Maybe that’s why I don’t have a lot of coordinating dies for my stamps.  🙂  None of these really lined up all that well, but I just finally decided that “close” was good enough.

The balls of yarn were stamped in different colors – all Hero Arts Mid-Tone Shadow Inks.  For the yarn I put in the basket, I cut off the loose tails – it just seemed to me that if they were nicely placed in a basket, they would all be pretty well wrapped up.  But of course I had to leave one ball out (popped up with some foam adhesive, like the cat).  The furry feline was stamped in black, colored with my Prismacolor pencils, and blended with a little OMS.

It took some thought to come up with a basket.   I just looked around for something that seemed a bit like a basket weave pattern, and decided that Martha Stewart’s Garden Trellis border punch was close.  I cut off two corners, and added two tiny strips to the sides.  (I love it when I can come up with an unconventional use for a tool.)  I’m not sure I like the card colors, but the design is pretty close to what I was thinking.  And I still love this stamp set.  Isn’t that just like the happiest cat you’ve ever seen?

Thanks for stopping by, and have a great day!

Supplies (some affiliate links used, see full disclosure):