Category Archives: Best Of

June

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Welcome to June!!

Boy, Half of 2014 is gone…  But, for me, June embodies the gloriousness of summer.  The final school bell sounded this past week and we are looking forward to all the laziness (yeah, right… I just had twins) that summer can bring.  Well, we can dream about it anyway…

For this installment if the easel calendar, I used the Best of Shelli stamp set.  It had this nice bird and flower stamp.  Super easy to use and very elegant.  I used the Primrose Petals ink and paper for it and the bird is stamped in Baked Brown Sugar.

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I hope you can take some time to enjoy summer as well.  You can start by heading over to see what Anne and Cheryl have for you:

mauistamper.com

createwithcheryl.me

May Day is Lei Day

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So, my title has NOTHING to do with my post, I just like saying it.  And, here in Hawaii, May Day being Lei Day means you get to give or wear a lei.  And, it’s a fun, and pretty thing to do.  A great tradition.  Know what else is a great tradition??  Mini Easel Calendars (How’s that for a segue…?)

For May, I used the Best Of Shelli stamp set.  It has this image that is one if my favorites. I like it cause it is a little smaller.  Sadly, the set is unavailable, but you could do something similar with the Daydream Medallions or any other stamp for that matter.  It’s a super simple stamp project, so the possibilities are endless.

I used the Crisp Cantaloupe paper in ink here…

May is a favorite month of mine.  As a teacher, the end of May can never come soon enough.  And, it symbolizes summer.  For me, that means a visit home and Sonic Cherry Cokes.  Wonderful.

 

 

You can go see what Anne and Cheryl are up to with their Mays.

Best of Snow

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Welcome back to the Best of Tour!!  This week we are focusing on the Best of SNOW.  Trying to create something with this set was a bit difficult in 80 degree Maui, but here is my best attempt… (and, I do genuinely feel sorry for you folks caught in the storms and hope you are safe, but, I gotta say, “nee-ner-nee-ner”)

Anyway, I wanted something simple and serene, so this is what it is:

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I love the new Smoke Slate color.  And I’m finding that I use it ALL THE TIME.  I especially love the textured 12×12 paper…which is what used here…

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The Frosted Finishes embellishment is perfect for this card… I think it was made for the best of snow…  It does make it a bit bulky to mail, but it is so totally worth the bling it adds to the card…

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So, there you have it!!  Thanks for stopping by!!  Now you are off to Deb to see what she has done… perhaps she has had the weather to help inspire her…

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Nancy Amato          http://stampinallnight.blogspot.com
Melissa Bolinger      http://www.stampinup.net/blog/2089191
Jackie Bottomley     http://www.jackiebottomley.blogspot.com
Susan Carlson         http://www.stampinmomoffour.blogspot.com
Tamra Davis             http://www.thecardladies.com
Sherri Eddleblute      http://www.sweetestdesigns.blogspot.com
Lynn Embrey            http://www.possibilitiestamperstudio.com
Kathy Hamrick          http://www.countryroads.typepad.com
Crystal Kondo           http://www.card-ed.com
Deb Lehigh               http://thestampinhut.typepad.com
Anne Matasci            http://www.MauiStamper.wordpress.com
Andi Potler                 http://www.absolutekreations.com
Michele Reynolds      http://www.inspirationink.typepad.com
Sharon Tisdale          http://www.stampinup.net/esuite/home/coveredbridgesstamper/blog
Janet Wakeland        http://www.remarkablycreated.com

Best of Christmas

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Welcome back to the next best of tour! We are featuring the Best of Christmas. And I am certain this will get you in the holiday mood…

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I just love this little nativity scene. I remember when it originally came out. I loved it. Its a little smaller this time around which makes it perfect for a window card.

And I just got my Endless Wishes stamp set…which is where the wording is from for this card… it is perhaps my favorite Christmas set this year. And that is with my little “difficulty” in using snowflakes in Hawaii… 
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The deco label die with soft suede… completes the card! Super easy super fast. Can make a whole slew of these for your whole card list….

Oh. I did a bad thing… I colored this with the now retired watercolor pencils. Sorry. But they are my favorite pencils… and I still use them.  So. Sorry. But not really.

Anyway, thanks for stopping by! You are off to Deb Lehigh to see what she has for you!


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Autumn is a little different here….

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Fall in Hawaii had always seemed different to me.  Probably because, there isn’t one…   I suppose, growing up in Kansas, fall has always been that glorious transition to Thanksgiving. And Thanksgiving is that delightful holiday that ushers in the full-on festivity that is Christmas. And, I suppose it does the same here, except that the weather here doesn’t seem to want to cooperate. Football games in shorts and tank tops just seem strange to me.  And I guess I never realized how significant a role the weather plays in this process. But, even though I’ve lived here a while now, I still feel that the holidays sneak up on me. Cause we don’t have the telltale sign of the weather.

All of that is neither here nor there… except it kinda is the reason behind the color scheme of this card. I love fall. And fall colors. And crunchy leaves.  But, it doesn’t seem quite right to have all those elements here.  Which is why I wanted to make a brighter Thanksgiving card. I chose crushed curry for the color of this card.  Now, I know it is a fallish color, but it’s brightness seems to capture a Maui Thanksgiving a little better.

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This card uses the label framelits die. I love it cause it comes with a label die sized to fit perfectly inside the cutout.

The Best of Autumn stamp set had several fall images and I kinda wanted to stick with the traditional pumpkin… even though it’s Maui. I used the aqua painter and some tangerine ink to keep with the brighter fall colors. I tried to keep away from the browns (though some of my favorite colors) just to keep the color bright.

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The magnificiant maple stamp adds some texture as does the strip of sweater weather DSP.  Oh. And my favorite. The burlap. LOVE BURLAP (I think its gonna be the Christmas theme this year.) A vintage brad completed the theme.

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I love the Give Thanks stamp that comes in this Best Of… set. Its super cute, not too long (Ever try to fit “Happy Thanksgiving” on a card?? It seems to take up an entire three card fronts.)

Anyway, hope you have a wonderful FALL….  I just saw on facebook that it snowed yesterday in KS.   Sometimes, Kansas weather can skip seasons.  So, I suppose KS doesn’t always follow what is SUPPOSED to happen.  But, here on Maui…. 80s and Sunny.  I gotta say, it is fun to go to the beach during Thanksgiving break…  🙂

Click the icon below to take you to the next stop on this tour:  Deb Leigh.  Enjoy your Tour!

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Here is the list:

Nancy Amato          http://stampinallnight.blogspot.com
Melissa Bolinger      http://www.stampinup.net/blog/2089191
Jackie Bottomley     http://www.jackiebottomley.blogspot.com
Susan Carlson         http://www.stampinmomoffour.blogspot.com
Tamra Davis             http://www.thecardladies.com
Sherri Eddleblute      http://www.sweetestdesigns.blogspot.com
Lynn Embrey            http://www.possibilitiestamperstudio.com
Kathy Hamrick          http://www.countryroads.typepad.com
Crystal Kondo           http://www.card-ed.com
Deb Lehigh               http://thestampinhut.typepad.com
Anne Matasci            http://www.MauiStamper.wordpress.com
Andi Potler                 http://www.absolutekreations.com
Michele Reynolds      http://www.inspirationink.typepad.com
Sharon Tisdale          http://www.stampinup.net/esuite/home/coveredbridgesstamper/blog
Janet Wakeland        http://www.remarkablycreated.com

Defying Gravity

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So the title really has nothing to do with this post except this month’s Best Of set…Best of Halloween…reminds me of the musical, Wicked. Well, the hat does. And I absolutely love the musical. And the song. I think it has something to do with the whole Kansas upbringing.  (For those of you who don’t know, Wicked is the true story of the Witches of Oz.)  I even just bought the most fabulous pair of red shoes…

Anyway… Wicked inspired the first card I made with this set. Though the stamps are super cute, I really wish the retired stamp we had with the legs in boots had made the cut…then I really could have a musically inspired card… but we can’t all have our druthers…

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This year’s Halloween DSP, Witches Brew, is absolutely fabulous. This is a Summer Starfruit piece from the pack. The I wanted the girlie-ness from that piece of paper to liven up the card. Its 4.5″ square… but I trimmed off a portion of the front and scalloped the edge. I textured with chevron and stamped with the Gorgeous Grunge stamp set And the Illuminate ink. On the eggplant, it comes out a pretty silver. Thus the hint of brushed silver paper.

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Now, I knew I wanted to glitter the hat with our black glitter. And I swear I had some of the heat and stick powder. But I think in efforts to simplify my life, I must have gotten rid of it. So. I had to stamp the image and then trace over it with crystal effects. But the result is still the same.

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A few rhinestones and we are all “off to see the wizard”.

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When I saw the owl in the tree in this set, I just knew I had to make a window card with the sponging and all that business. So… off to figure that out.

Here is the finished product

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I used the window framelits die and cut the window out of the layer of DSP that is on the front.  Then I placed it where I wanted it to be on the card and marked the insides so I knew where to line it all up.

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Remove the DSP and with the help of the exceptionally wonderful magnetic platform, my window got cut out of the card base exactly where I needed it to be.

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I put a piece of vanilla paper on the inside and then marked the window from the front of the card. This is so I would know where to line up the mask for my stamping and sponging.  I cut then same size window out of a scrap of paper and used it to mask the area. I stamped the owl/tree stamp and then sponged summer start fruit for the moon.

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After stmping and sponging summer start fruit, I used the 1″ c ircle to make a mask to keep the start fruit clean as I sponged smokey slate, basic gray, and black.

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Like my piece of Washi as a way to hold the mask down?? Its perfect for that cause it is removable.  And here is the finished sponge job.

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Now, I couldn’t keep the insides that plain… and we have all that glorious Halloween washi. So…

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Here’s another look at the front again :

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And the whole thing…

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Well. Thanks for stopping by for this month’s Best Of… you’re off to see what Deb Leigh has in store.  And here’s to a day of defying gravity. Plug that song in and go around singing it. I dare ya….

Click the box to go to Deb’s blog:

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Nancy Amato          http://stampinallnight.blogspot.com
Melissa Bolinger      http://www.stampinup.net/blog/2089191
Jackie Bottomley     http://www.jackiebottomley.blogspot.com
Susan Carlson         http://www.stampinmomoffour.blogspot.com
Tamra Davis             http://www.thecardladies.com
Sherri Eddleblute      http://www.sweetestdesigns.blogspot.com
Lynn Embrey            http://www.possibilitiestamperstudio.com
Kathy Hamrick          http://www.countryroads.typepad.com
Crystal Kondo           http://www.card-ed.com
Deb Lehigh               http://thestampinhut.typepad.com
Anne Matasci            http://www.MauiStamper.wordpress.com
Robin Merriman        http://www.trinitydesignstudio.blogspot.com
Andi Potler                 http://www.absolutekreations.com
Michele Reynolds      http://www.inspirationink.typepad.com
Sharon Tisdale          http://www.stampinup.net/esuite/home/coveredbridgesstamper/blog
Janet Wakeland        http://www.remarkablycreated.com

Best of…. Shelli

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So, welcome back for the next installment of the BEST OF tour.  This month is Best of Shelli….  This stamp set was hand picked by co-founder Shelli Gardner as some of her favorite images.  One look at the set will tell you why…

And, I’ve been on a 3×3 kick lately, so the project I have for you is this little 3×3 note card set housed in one of those FABULOUS muslin bags from the Holiday Catalog.  Have a look-see:

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So, you probably already know that I’m in love with this year’s In-Colors.  This set of cards features two:  Baked Brown Sugar and Strawberry Slush.  And, it has that incredible stretch ruffled ribbon.  Just a small piece, but that’s all it needs.  I stamped the image in baked brown sugar and used the sentiment from the stamp set “Six Sided Sampler”.  And, I copied that same image on both the envelope and INSIDE the envelope with those awesome framelit envelope liner.  JUST LOVE THOSE.

 

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Close up of the card so you can see the little flag of ribbon I stapled on.  I covered it with the faceted buttons and put one of those GIGANTIC rhinestones inside to cover the holes.  It adds the perfect amount  of bling and covers the staple…  🙂

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These are those muslin bags.  AND THEY’RE STAMP-ABLE.  I put a thin piece of cardboard inside just to make it rigid and keep color from bleeding through and just had at it.  I copied the same embellishment on the bag, but instead of the staple I used the hot glue gun…

I love these bags because of the drawstring.  It gives a nice little ruffle on the top and the string is long enough to tie in a knot or a bow.  And, it has cute little tassels on the end.  These are 8 for $9.95.  (4×5.5″)  I can TOTALLY see these for gift cards at Christmas.  Or jewelry bags.  or…or… or…

OR… 3×3 note cards!!

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Here is an upclose of the envelopes.  And, the envie insert.  These will SPICE UP ANY envelope and make it the NOT BORING WHITE ENVELOPE.  I used card stock I stamped as the liner… but, probably better would be to use DSP.  Just cause card stock is a little thick.  But, it still works.

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Final product…  It’s SO fun making 3×3 cards….

Next, you are on to Deb Leigh.  Enjoy the tour!!

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If you need to click through the list old-school style, here you go…

Nancy Amato          http://stampinallnight.blogspot.com
Melissa Bolinger      http://www.stampinup.net/blog/2089191
Jackie Bottomley     http://www.jackiebottomley.blogspot.com
Susan Carlson         http://www.stampinmomoffour.blogspot.com
Tamra Davis             http://www.thecardladies.com
Sherri Eddleblute      http://www.sweetestdesigns.blogspot.com
Lynn Embrey            http://www.possibilitiestamperstudio.com
Kathy Hamrick          http://www.countryroads.typepad.com
Crystal Kondo           http://www.card-ed.com
Deb Lehigh               http://thestampinhut.typepad.com
Anne Matasci            http://www.MauiStamper.wordpress.com
Robin Merriman        http://www.trinitydesignstudio.blogspot.com
Andi Potler                 http://www.absolutekreations.com
Michele Reynolds      http://www.inspirationink.typepad.com
Sharon Tisdale          http://www.stampinup.net/esuite/home/coveredbridgesstamper/blog
Janet Wakeland        http://www.remarkablycreated.com

 

 

 

Best of…Greeting!

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As you read this, I’m winding down the convention madness. Which is sad cause I love convention madness. But this is a lovely little stamp set to help my hafta-go-home-and-join-the-real-world blues. Hum.

Anyway, this set brings back a little nostalgia cause that “you made my day” stamp….was in one of the very first SU! sets I bought. Back when you could choose foam mount or wood mount. I got foam mount cause I was cheap. Cause I was just outta college and no mo’ money.

Anyway, being that this super cute greeting set is, well, greetings and no images, I decided to pair it with Flower Shop. Cause it is a cute  set. Six flowers with a matching punch. (SU! is offering these as a bundle, so they are 15% off if you buy the bundle.)  The flowers are great cause they are all the same shape. They each just have a different feel depending on their style. So. I thought they’d go perfect with the greeting set to make a super cute little pack of 3×3 note cards. And. Just a tip. If you purchase the Flower Shop bundle (stamps and punch), I might suggest that you head over to Maui Stamper to look at her post at how to line up the stamps with the punch. The stamps aren’t symmetrical so they do take a little fussing to figure out how to stamp them so you can punch them.  Maui Stamper will show you how to mark them so it will be easy.

Anyway… here you go…

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Again, excuse the improvising. Made these while I was in Kansas and didn’t have all my stamp supplies or photographing accoutrements. So these are very dark.  On a floral background.  Cause this is what my mom, Quilter Extraordinaire, had in the way of white fabric.  (???? a table cloth????)  (BTW… I have a new idea for a photo booth I am very excited about so hopefully pics will get even better.)

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I think this is my favorite greeting stamp. Cause it reminds me of the good ole’ days….

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Brown sugar flowers. Yeah, I know…strange. But it works. And wouldn’t this be nice tucked in as a surprise in your husband’s wallet or kid’s lunch?

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Washi! My first time using it on a card. Love it! And the stamp inks and stamps on it beautifully.  And this thank you is a perfectly good all around thank you. You need it.

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For a wedding gift…

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Memory lane aside… this happy day image is the new addition to the set and I love it. So cute.

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And who wouldn’t want a cheery note telling them they are in someone’s thoughts.

So. That’s my take on the best of greetings. I think it is a super easy to use, great universal set. And a steal at $14.95…

Now you are headed over to Deb Lehigh to see her vision for this awesomely versatile set…

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If that link doesn’t work, here are all the stops:

For the Newlywed…

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Welcome Back!!  This is the next installment of the BEST OF… Blog tour.  This month features a cute set called “Brides and Babies”.

For this month, I decided to make a little gift card holder that you might give a newly-wed couple for their wedding.  It easily could be turned into a baby gift card holder using the other stamps in this set.  This idea and set are VERY USEFUL (to quote my son’s THOMAS books…).  And, if you would like my 2 cents (if you would not like it, skip the next coupla lines)  I’ve decided gift cards are good for newlyweds or newly parents.  Cause it all costs money…  🙂

ANYWAY…. back to the card…  Gift card holder.  Well… as much as I’d love to take credit for this, I must tell you that my friend, and fellow Maui Stamper, Cheryl Hamilton made me a little holder like this with a tea bag in it.  After my back surgery…  She had a completely different design, but the overall folder was the same.  You should check her out sometime (createwithcheryl.wordpress.com).

Here it is:

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So, the colors I used in this were the Smokey Slate (It’s a new one and I absolutely Love it), Basic Gray, and Blushing Bride (hee hee….get it… BRIDE???).  I used the white taffeta ribbon and a squish of the dazzling details glitter paint.  And, I thought this would be the perfect place to use one of those ROWS of the rhinestones.  Cause what do you do with those??  I always use my whole sheet up and have those 3 strips left.  I then wind up cutting them apart and using them all as singles.  I can’t remember EVER using a whole strip.  But, I did.  This time…

And here is the inside:

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That little pennant stamp comes from one of the new Hostess Sets (Banner Greetings).  SUPER cute.  Many Uses.  Anyway…

I cut the paper at 4.25 x 9 and scored at 3″ and 6″ down the 9″ side.  Then I cut the corner off…. maybe this makes sense:

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Can you kinda faintly see the score marks?

Here is how to cut…  Line a score mark up on the top part of the cutting surface of  your trimmer and the corner of the paper on the bottom of the cutting surface of your trimmer.

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Here is it cut apart…

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Fold on the score line.  Add adhesive on the bottom, straight edge of the paper and that makes the pocket when it is folded over.  If you want any trim work on the edge, you should add that before you glue the pocket down.  (I added that scallop trim border punch–but the edgelits we have would look fantastic too).

The size of this whole folder is predicated upon what you wanna put in side.  The tea bag folder I received wasn’t quite so tall.  I could see this made for a PAPER gift certificate (you know, those long ones that might fit in a #10 envelope).  The possibilities are endless.  A bag of tea is nice, you could make super tiny ones for like one of those individually wrapped life-saver things… pack of gum (You’d need to make a gusset on the pocket, but that’s only an additional score line…)

After you decorate it up, you have a super easy, fast little gift card.  And, it’s packaged SO nicely (cause, let’s face it, though gift cards are great gifts, they are BORING to give…)

Oh, I also used the shimmer white paper for the front.  It’s extremely subtle, and the pictures don’t really capture it’s elegance…  but it’s beautiful.  And, perfect for such an occasions…

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It kinda just comes off in this photo as shine, but it is very pretty… a little sparkly but not at all over-powering… I love this paper for  holidays and special occasions.

One last look…

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Well, I hope you enjoyed this post… next you are off to see what Deb Leigh has for you!!  Click the box below or use the list if the link isn’t working like it should…

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BEST of Butterflies

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Welcome BACK!!  For the next installment of the Best-OF tour.

Best of Butterflies.  And, I gotta say, it’s the BEST OF.  There are so many nice butterflies in this set it’s unbelievable…  And, I am now kicking myself now cause I had lots of things I wanted to show you with that I’ve made previously…  but, due to my compulsiveness to not keep things after they retire, I no longer have the samples.  But, the take away from this is that you need the stamps.  Cause they are great.

When I first saw these butterflies, I was instantly drawn to the Monarch one…  And, thinking it needed to be bold.  And stand out.  So, this is what I came up with:

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I love square cards.  Now, I now they cost more to mail… yada yada….  BUT… WOULDN’T YOU LOVE GETTING THIS IN THE MAIL??  WITH THE ORANGE (correction, tangerine tango) POLKADOT ENVELOPE???  It would make my WEEK.

Since we are nearing the end of this current catalog, I figured it should be a tribute to more things retiring…  like the Scallop Square die (Can you see it, behind the basic gray square panel, layered on a solid black… it’s the whole tone-on-tone thing…)  The Designer Series Paper Stacks (used for the tangerine envelope AND for the basic gray background on the card).  AND, I used the retiring square punches, the 1 1/4″ and the 1 3/8″ punches.  Now, I know you are thinking that squares are easy to CUT.  but, they are even easier to PUNCH.  And, you need them to make an envelope (well, it makes making an envelope easier).   SEE:

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Okay… so… back up a couple of steps.  The card is 4 1/2″ square.  So, I made the envelope 4 3/4″ square.  In order to do this, you cut a paper that is 8×8 and use the diagonal plate on your stampin’ score to score lines at every 3 3/8″  (do it on all sides).  This will leave you with a little place where your score lines intersect.  You are gonna wanna remove the paper from the area where they intersect.  The square punch works swimmingly.  Now I know you could use scissors and cut it.  But WHY??

 

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And, you need the punches to punch out the pieces for the front of the card.  Well, I suppose you can cut it, but punching is faster.   And, for the butterfly, I decided to use the aqua painter.  Cause I wanted to be able to layer the color.  Okay.  JUST had a brainstorm…  I need to research this, but perhaps some of you know…  now, copic markers are alcohol based.  I wonder what would happen if you used alcohol in the aqua painter??  I’ve never tried.  Always done water…  HUM…  Anyway, that is beside the point.  I know lots of people prefer the blender pen to the aqua painter, but… gotta say… I love the aqua painter.  Admittedly, there is a learning curve with using it, but once you figure it out, it is EXCELLENT for adding color to specific places.  Perfect for shading, adding depth…etc…

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And of course, I had to add some rhinestones cause, well DIAMONDS should be on everything.    See in the butterfly that it looks like a few colors?  It’s not.  Just tangerine tango… layered on with the aqua painter…

 

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Just another perspective…  My favorite is the butterfly busting out of the box.  Cause why be conformed to a box??  Why be limited by a white envelope??  To a NORMAL sized card???  There is NO NEED TO LIMIT.  🙂

 

Anyway, I hope you enjoy the rest of the tour… You are now headed over to Deb Leigh.  You can click on the button below.  Or use the list of links if you need….

 

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