sparkling butterflies card

Sparkling Butterflies cardI’ve been wanting to pull out my Stampin’ Up butterfly stamp set for a while now, and the latest Simon Says Stamp Wednesday Challenge, called Add Some Shimmer, seemed like the perfect opportunity for a sparkling butterflies card.  I can never get enough shimmer, and there’s lots of it to enjoy this week.  Check it out, if you haven’t already.  🙂

For my card, I started with some plain white cardstock, and Stampin’ Up’s Watercolor Wash background stamp.  I blended some yellow, orange and pink ink on the stamp, and then spritzed it with just a touch of water, to get a softer look, and then placed my paper on the stamp (instead of the other way around).  I liked how it came out, but It needed a touch more color.  So, I took some more ink, smooshed a bunch on an acrylic block, sprinkled on some Perfect Pearls for some shimmer, added just enough water to mix it up, and then used a paintbrush to “flick” spots of shimmering color over the background.  It really doesn’t show up well in my photo, but it looks really nice in real life.

The butterflies were stamped with my MISTI tool.  With layered stamp sets, this works brilliantly, but I could have done this with an acrylic block.  The butterfly wings are made with three layered stamps, and I used two colors of ink for each set of wings.  I was able to get the look of more shades by stamping some layers lighter than others.  After using all three stamps, and making sure the ink was dry, I used just the smallest of the three stamps, and stamped again with Versamark ink.  I then sprinkled some Iridescent Sparkle embossing powder and heat-set it.  This gives a whole lot of sparkle to just part of the butterflies.  I wish I could get all that sparkly goodness to really show up in a photo, but I think you can see some of it.

After the wings were done, I stamped the bodies, using Versafine Black Onyx ink, which I covered with just plain, clear embossing powder, and heat set.  I then fussy-cut them, and attached them to the card, just putting adhesive on the bodies, so the wings could lift up a bit.  The largest butterfly seriously leaps off the card!  I used Kool Tack invisible dimensional adhesive, doubled-up, and carefully placed only under the body.  I must confess that this may have to be a “deliver in person” card, as I’m not sure how well that butterfly will go through the mail… but it sure does look cool.  🙂KitEndSig2

Thank you so much for stopping by!  I hope you have a sparkly, shimmery, happy day!

Supplies (some affiliate links used – see here for full disclosure. If you make a purchase from these links, it won’t cost you any extra, but I will get a small commission, which will be used to keep this blog going.  Thank you so much!  SSS=Simon Says Stamp and AMZ=Amazon.com):


 

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the “real” bashful cat

Kit-PepperThis is the REAL bashful cat.  Her name is Pepper, and she’s my little darling.  She was the runt of her litter, so she has stayed “kitten-sized”.  Apparently, it’s fairly common for runts to have anxiety issues… and she’s definitely no exception.  The poor little dear is afraid of everything.  But somehow, we completely bonded.  I understand her, and give her the space she needs, but I’m always here when she needs some love.  ♥

I figured that it was about time to share the inspiration for my blog – my own bashful cat.  But all of my fur-babies give me inspiration.  I’m currently owned by three felines.  Pepper is certainly the most bashful, but Dash is pretty anti-social, too.  However, he loves to snuggle, and he’s the most gentle and loving cat I’ve ever had the pleasure to know.Kit-DashLast but not least, there’s Timber.  He’s our feisty redhead that just has to be in the middle of everything… such as when I’m trying to photograph a new card (see below).  😉Kit-TimberI love all animals.  They’re really just small humans with fur.  I’m a vegan because I can’t stand the thought of causing harm or pain to any of our fellow animals.  But mostly… I’m a cat person.  I just “get” them.  And they must get me, too, because they seem to just keep showing up on my doorstep.  🙂

Wishing all of you (two-legged, four-legged, furry, feathered, scaly, and otherwise) a beautiful day!  Thanks for stopping by!

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twilight cats card

Two cats at twilight, Paper Smooches cardJust a couple of frisky felines, meeting for a secret rendezvous at twilight.  For some reason, this card reminds me of Disney’s Lady & The Tramp… but with cats.  (It’s pretty obvious that Mr. Disney was a “dog person”.  With the exception of “Aristocats”, nearly all of the cats in Disney films are evil.  It’s just not right.  Maybe this is just my way of setting the record straight.)  For this card, I wanted two cats facing each other, and I just love Paper Smooches Nine Lives stamp set… but the cats in the set are all rather dramatically different – they don’t seem to go together.  So, I decided to stick with my favorite, and use Jennifer McGuire’s mirror technique to reverse the image.

I’ve tried this before, and it hasn’t gone so well, but this time, I used my MISTI.   I found a nice, large dotted circle stamp, and flipped it over, so I could use the flat back side.  That’s what you see on the right side of my MISTI.  (This technique is so much easier to explain with a video, so I’ll just suggest you check out Jennifer’s post.)Kit-MirrorStampCats

 

I still didn’t get the results that Jennifer got – despite using the same ink, and stamping a few times, I just couldn’t get as dark an image.  (The images on the left are the “reverse” images.  The ones on the right are stamped normally.)  Mirror Stamping technique with cats

However, the image is certainly clear enough to make out, so I just touched it up with a black marker, and voila – a perfect reverse image.  🙂Kit-MirrorCatsTouchedUp

Once I had my cats, I colored them with Prismacolor pencils, blended them with odorless mineral spirits, fussy-cut them out, and touched up the edges with a black brush-tipped marker.  Oh, and I added some Glossy Accents to their beautiful, soulful eyes.

To give them some character, I gave the girl a little polka-dot bow, and the boy a hat.  His hat’s a bit big,,, the little tramp stole it from a snowman.  😉

To assemble the card, I die-cut three pierced rectangles, from light grey, dark grey and white cardstock.  The two grey rectangles were adhered straight to a dark blue card base.  For the white triangle, I blended on a couple of blue inks to create sort of a night sky, and I flicked on some drops of white ink for stars.  The wall they’re sitting on is a piece of cardstock embossed with bricks, and “roughed up” a bit with some brown ink.  The moon is stamped and fussy-cut, and I heat-embossed it with some UTEE to give it shine and dimension.  That whole rectangle was then attached to the card with some foam adhesive.  I arranged my cats, added the moon and a small die-cut “hi”, and called it done.Simon Says Stamp Wednesday Challenge Blog

This card was made for two fun challenges.  Simon Says Stamp’s current Wednesday Challenge is Animal Magic, and they’re featuring Paper Smooches products, so obviously I had to make something with these wonderful cats.  🙂

 

 

 

 

Paper SmPaper Smoochesooches Monthly Challenge is Layers – and I layered a few things on this card.

Do you participate in any challenges?  It’s a great way to spark your creativity.  This card was an absolute pleasure to make.  KitEndSig2

Thanks for stopping by, and have an awesome day!

 

P.S.  If you’d like to see my own lovely fur-children, please check out my next post, the real bashful cat.

Supplies (some affiliate links used – see here for full disclosure. If you make a purchase from these links, it won’t cost you any extra, but I will get a small commission, which will be used to keep this blog going.  Thank you so much!  SSS=Simon Says Stamp and AMZ=Amazon.com):


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father’s day card 2016

Father's Day Card 2016, by KittyHappy Dad’s Day!  As soon as I got this truck stamp, I just new I had to use it on my Father’s Day card. The old truck just said “dad” to me.  I colored it with Prismacolors, trying to make it look a little “old”.  (Now that I’m really looking at it, though… the hubcaps are too shiny, aren’t they?)  It’s colored, fussy-cut, edges are inked, and it’s attached with foam adhesive.

I used Kraft for the cardbase, and then die-cut several deckle rectangles from an old Crate Paper collection.  The palm trees are a rub-on from the kit.  The Route 66 sign was fussy-cut from patterned paper in the kit.  I stamped the sentiment, and inked all the edges.

The hard part?  Well, the stamp set comes with a few various items that will fit in the back of the truck, but none of them seemed quite right for this card.  I was going to settle for some dogs, but it just didn’t feel right… I can’t ever remember seeing my dad with a dog. (We were always a cat family.  Big shocker, right?  LOL.)  I thought I was going to have to settle, but finally, I found a teeny tiny cat in my stash.  It had to be really small to “fit” the truck.  I actually stamped the truck, then masked it and stamped the cat, so he is colored and cut out as part of the truck image.KitEndSig2

Wishing all the dads out there a Very Happy Fathers Day.  Keep on truckin’!  Ummm… I mean, craftin’.  🙂

Supplies… it seems that I used a lot of “retired” products here.  Sorry! Truck stamp is from Stampin’ Up, Loads of Love.  Patterned paper & rub-on from Crate Paper, Static Collection.  Tiny cat from Stampendous, Love My Cat.

Supplies still available:  (some affiliate links used – see here for full disclosure. If you make a purchase from these links, it won’t cost you any extra, but I will get a small commission, which will be used to keep this blog going.  Thank you so much!  SSS=Simon Says Stamp and AMZ=Amazon.com):

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organizing supplies, and making the best of card “leftovers”

Handmade cards, made from scrapsDue to a very generous benefactor (thanks Mom!), I have replaced my beloved Sizzix Big Kick with a new-and-improved model.  Yay!  But while I was waiting for my new tool to arrive, it seemed like the perfect time to get a bit organized, and see if I couldn’t finish up some of my “UFO’s”.  (“Unfinished Objects”, to steal a term from the cross-stitch community.)  I did make a dent – a few of the cards I finished up (all UFO’s) are shown above.  And here’s three more:Kit-3Cards6-12-16As for getting organized… I knew I needed to do something with all the little punchies and die-cut pieces that just seem to accumulate when you craft.  Now, the amount of my unfinished bits and pieces is rather embarrassing, but it’s worth mentioning that I make a LOT of cards.  Sometimes, I cut something out, and it just doesn’t work for that card.  Or, I prepare duplicates to make several cards at once, and I simply run out of time to finish them.  Or sometimes, I try something, and it just doesn’t work.  But instead of filling my waste basket with tons of “not quite rights”, I try to salvage as much as I can.  What doesn’t work on one card, might be perfect on another.  One card’s trash is another card’s treasure… or something like that.  🙂

At some point, I started putting the smaller pieces into an organizer, separating them by “type” (flowers, hearts, stars, etc.), and larger ones were just stashed in various containers.  Kit-Die-cutsByCategoryThis wasn’t working very well, though.  For starters, I have, like, bazillions of hearts, mostly left over from a Valentine’s card class I taught.  (I was a bit “over-prepared”, LOL.)  And I kind of dreaded going through this mess because the one I needed – if it was actually there – was sure to be on the bottom, so it didn’t get a lot of use.  Instead, I decided to try another method – organize by color (or color-family).Kit-Die-cutsByColorNow, I’ll have to report back later, to tell you just how well this system works, but it’s already showing promise.  I combined my smaller and larger pieces together, shapes and words.  At the moment, they’re mostly in page protectors for storage, but I’m working on something better.  Small Tupperware-type containers might be the way to go.  My one big tip?  Don’t try this with your ceiling fan on.  (Trust me on that one, LOL.)

After that, it was time to look at the larger, half-started items… stamped images (some colored), inked backgrounds, created embellishments, etc.Kit-CardPartsThis was the stuff I REALLY wanted to clean up.  I still have a LONG way to go, but I did manage to put together 10 cards relatively quickly (see beginning of post).  None of them are particularly special, and most of them are similar to cards I’ve made in the past, but I’ll give you close-ups of a few of my favorites.

This first one came together rather easily.  I had just a bit of that patterned paper, and had already pulled out some matching cardstock… and never finished.  I found the already-colored doggy, and thought he’d go perfectly with this.  Some layering, some punching, a simple stamped sentiment… I think it turned out pretty cute for a “leftover”.

Just Saying Hello card, dog with roseThe purple and teal splotched background on the card below just wasn’t what I was going for originally, but I managed to salvage the piece with some purple and teal cardstock pieces, most of them from my die-cut stash.

Purple and teal "hello" card, made with Gorgeous GrungeThis next one was made from remnants left over from a bunch of diagonal-striped cards I made.  The hedgehog was just a misc. image I had colored, but never used.  I think this one might work for a child’s birthday.

Birthday card, hedgehog with a presentAnd this last one was actually “mostly” done.  I was having trouble with the title, and the mason jar, but I came up with something.  (The jar was stamped on some recycled acetate packaging, in Stayz-On ink, and fussy-cut out.  I just used Ranger Multi-Medium matte glue, mostly on the top of the jar, with just a very little bit around the edges.  It’s not perfect, but “almost” invisible.)

Discover the Wonder, summer fireflies handmade card

How do you organize your scraps?  Do you keep all of your leftovers?  While I realize that a LOT of supplies were ultimately used to make these cards, the point I wanted to make is that sometimes you just need to raid your own stash, and see what bits and pieces will fit together.

Thanks so much for stopping by, and have a wondrous day!KitEndSig2

Some of the supplies used (WAY too many to list everything, but just ask, if you’re looking for something), (some affiliate links used – see here for full disclosure. If you make a purchase from these links, it won’t cost you any extra, but I will get a small commission, which will be used to keep this blog going.  Thank you so much!  SSS=Simon Says Stamp and AMZ=Amazon.com):

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cards: adding sparkle on a budget

Sparkly Roses card in lavender, by KittyEvery card can use a little sparkle, right?  I’d say that sparkly cards are really popular right now, but honestly, when has “bling” ever been a bad idea on a card?   🙂  This card was inspired by both Jennifer McGuire and Kristina Werner – two of my favorite card-makers.  (I know I sound like a broken record, but these ladies are amazing!)

Recently, they have used a few different methods to add some sparkle to their cards:  various colored Wink of Stella pens, and glitter pens from Spectrum Noir, a variety of Perfect Pearls colored powder, shiny metallic watercolors… they had me itching to sparkle myself.  But all I could find in my stash was one teeny tiny jar of plain Perfect Pearls.  So I improvised.

I wanted to try coloring on some vellum, so I looked for a good stamp design.  I wanted a fairly large image, but couldn’t find anything suitable, so I took a couple of smaller rose stamps and layered them to make sort of a bouquet… which required quite a bit of masking… and that was perfect timing for the latest Simon Says Stamp Wednesday Challenge:  Mask it.  I don’t have any masking paper or liquid, so I went “old school” – just stamped the images in black on plain white cardstock, fussy-cut them out, and used a tiny bit of repositionable adhesive to keep them in place while I stamped.Kit-SparkleRoses3I heat-embossed my image in white, onto a piece of vellum.  Then I pulled out my markers and Perfect Pearls.  That jar might look tiny, but a little goes a LONG way with this stuff.  To color this image, I started by making a sort of “palette” by simply laminating a plain piece of white cardstock.  It’s a bit easier to see the colors this way, but it’s totally not necessary.  You can use a craft mat, an acrylic block, a page protector, or probably just about any slick surface.

I scribbled a little color onto my palette, tapped just a light dusting of Perfect Pearls on the color, took a plain ol’ paint brush, dipped it in a bit of water, and mixed it until it was smooth enough to paint with.  It worked like a charm!Painting with markers and Perfect Pearls on vellumI used some Zig Clean Color Real Brush markers for this, but you can use whatever kind of markers you have.  Or, you can do this with ink pads – just smoosh some ink on your craft mat or acrylic block, and mix it with a bit of Perfect Pearls and water – works just as well.  The amount of sparkle you get from just a little bit of Perfect Pearls is amazing!  The colors look a little washed out in my photos, but I wanted to be sure that I captured some of that shine.  I tried this with a few different color combinations.  Here’s one in brighter colors:Card: roses on vellum, painted with markers and Perfect PearlsOriginally, I was going to attach the vellum to the back of the card, and just have it hang over.  However, all that heat embossing and painting did cause the vellum to warp a little bit.  So instead, I created a frame with a couple of Nestabilities dies, glued the vellum to the back of the frame, and then used some thinly cut foam adhesive all the way around the frame, to pop it up on a white card base.  A heat-embossed sentiment and a few flowers in the corner finish it up.

You can get a TON of mileage out of one tiny jar of Perfect Pearls – an inexpensive way to add all sorts of sparkle.  You could also get a very similar look by simply coloring the image with markers, and then spraying the entire thing with a small water bottle, with just a bit of that Perfect Pearls added to it.  Or, you can color it and then “paint” over the entire image with some plain water mixed with Perfect Pearls – this would probably look very similar to what I did, and you could probably use even less of the powder.  (But mixing the sparkly colors was a lot of fun.)  🙂

And you don’t have to use vellum – it sparkles every bit as much on just plain white cardstock!  Don’t you just love those sparkly, vibrant colors?!!  (This will get turned into a card at some point.)Kit-PearlsOnCardstockHopefully I’ve given you some ideas.  There are all sorts of ways to work a little razzle-dazzle into your cards.  Work with what you’ve got – you might be surprised by what you end up with!

Thanks for stopping by, and Sparkle on!

Supplies (some affiliate links used – see here for full disclosure. If you make a purchase from these links, it won’t cost you any extra, but I will get a small commission, which will be used to keep this blog going.  Thank you so much!  SSS=Simon Says Stamp and AMZ=Amazon.com):