Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Technique Tuesday - PAPER PLEATING


I have had a request for a how-to on paper pleating, so decided to write my Technique Tuesday on the paper pleating technique.  It's a really easy technique to do, and the results are very striking.  Often a little pleating on a card or page is just the thing it needs.  Here's how it's done: 


  • Begin with a strip of paper approximately 1 1/2" wide. Score first at the 1" mark, then at the 1 1/2" mark, then at 2 1/2", then at 3", alternating between adding 1/2" and 1" until you get to the end of your strip.                                                 
  • Apply tape runner along the top edge of your scored strip (either edge if no pattern).
  • Using the scored lines, accordion fold the pre-scored strip.  Beginning at the left side, make a mountain fold (paper folds up like a mountain), then a valley fold (paper folds down, like a valley).  Repeat mountain and valley folds, tucking each 1/2" section behind the 1" sections to form the pleats.
  • To create a longer strip, repeat the process on a second strip.  Adhere to first strip by taping two half-inch sections together. This is so the seam will be tucked behind a pleat, where it will not show from the front of your card or page.
  • If you like a distressed look, lightly sand or sponge ink to your pleats, or distress the top and bottom edges.
  • Adhere to card or page with tape runner.  For a more finished look, attach ribbon or trim along the top edge of the pleated strip to hide the edge.


  • Begin with a strip of paper your desired width, say 1/2" or 1", depending on where you will use it. Score at 1", then 3/8", then 1", then 3/8" intervals along entire strip on back of paper.
  • Starting at one end, begin pulling and pinching and pleating on the scored lines.  You will be folding the 3/8" scores toward each other, alternating from front and back sides, until all folds are completed.
  • Run tape runner across the back of the strip to hold the pleats in place.
  • Adhere to card or page with tape runner.  For a more finished look, attach ribbon or trim along the top edge of the strip to hide the edge.
  • On this card, I lined the "valleys" with tan cardstock to offset the pleats and break up all the green. I just cut 1/2" strips of tan and taped them in the valleys.
That's it!!  I told you it was easy!  Now, you try it.  And be sure to let me see what you created!

Enjoy and savor this glorious fall day!!


Friday, October 23, 2009

Bridal Shower Favors

It's SIX WEEKS till the wedding!!

There, I got that out!  Whew!  These weeks are flying by, there's so much to do.  Faith (my daughter) is holding up well, and surprising me with some very sensible decisions and choices.  I'm actually doing very well, also.  
We've been busy, busy, busy, getting things ready, having fittings, last minute changes and orders, and so much more.  
Right now my focus is on this weekend, Sunday, to be exact.  That's Faith's bridal shower here in Rochester.  My friend, Sylvia, and I, are giving it.  It is being held at Sylvia's house, and I must say everything is simply lovely.  We decorated Tuesday, copying Martha Stewart's ideas.  We have shimmering tulle in the chandelier, with crystals hanging from it.  There is tulle "poufed" around the table, with ribbons and beads.  It looks magical.  All I can say is, move over Martha!  lol.

Seriously, though, I think Faith will be pleasantly surprised when she sees it.  Sylvia is very, very talented with food  and hospitality.  She's a hostess to the max, and really knows how to plan a party.  I am the designated design artist for invitations, favors, decorations.  We make a great team, and it has been fun planning this event.  Hmmmm.....maybe we should go into business with this!

Anyways, back to the blog.  I have posted a couple of pictures here of the favors.  I made the little candy "purses" as an afterthought, after I already made these post-it holders.  Had to have 'em, as they're just too cute, and Faith loves purses and shoes!  They (the purses) have little Hershey's nugget chocolates in them.  

The Post It holder is actually one of those acrylic frames.  I got them at the Christmas Tree Shop for 89 cents each.  Instead of standing it up, I laid it flat.  I slipped a piece of vellum paper with rosebuds on it inside the frame, to fit, taped these pretty post-its (Joann Fabrics had them) onto the top, then tied a ribbon around the top.  I embossed the butterfly (Penny Black stamp) and colored it from the back with markers.  That's it....easy, and very elegant.  These can be done for any occasion with different types of papers.

So, now I'm working on the thank you notes.  Hope to have them done by Sunday, so Faith can take them home with her.  After that project, I will be making the card box for the wedding.  I made one for one of Faith's friends, and she wants me to make hers. Here's the one I made for her friend's wedding.  The colors on Faith's will be different, and a different design, more elegant, less whimsical.  Can't wait to go shopping for the supplies and pick the colors.  She wants ivory with gold, with some flowers and ribbon.

Well, it's off to dreamland for me.  Been a loooooong week.  I have cookies to cut out and bake tomorrow for the shower, a prayer shawl to deliver, vegetables to get into the freezer before they spoil (from our farmer's market), finishing touches for the shower, and a shower gift to shop for yet, all before Sunday!

Hope you have a wonderful weekend.  Enjoy our fall blessings!




Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Technique Tuesday - White Resist Double Embossing

This Techique Tuesday I am sharing one of my very favorite techniques.  I used white embossing powder, clear embossing powder, and pigment ink pads to create this card.

The floral panel attached to this card was created with double embossing.  Here is the technique:

  • Emboss flower stamp (Hero Arts) with white pigment ink and white embossing powder.
  • Using desired shades (in this case blues and greens) of pigment inks, rub inks directly onto the card panel, over the embossed image. Use three or four colors, starting with the lightest color and working up to the darkest color.
  • Use a tissue to gently blend the colors of inks, and to remove the pigment ink from the embossed image.  Do not rub tissue too long, as you want the ink to remain slightly wet.
  • Pour clear embossing powder over the entire stamped panel, then heat and emboss.  The white image will "pop" out, and the inked background will be embossed with a glazed finish.
To finish constructing the card:
-Tear scrapbook paper and attached it to a blue A2 card.
-Stamp swirl stamp (Hero Arts) on the bottom left with white ink.
-Attach the embossed panel to a white torn panel, about 1/2" larger all around, then distressed it with blue and green inks. 
-Stamp BELIEVE onto blue scrap and distress.  Attach straight pin threaded with beads.  Attach to panel.

That's it!  I do love this technique.  Try it with some fall colors for your fall and thanksgiving cards! Let me know how you do - I'd love to see your work!



Sunday, October 18, 2009

ATC Swap Card for Magenta Swap

I got my trading cards in the mail yesterday for Picatso's (Magenta Rubber Stamps) Artist Trading Card swap - The Colors of Fall.  This is my ATC for the swap.

The guidelines stipulated using Magenta stamps, and I just love this one.  40138-J is the stamp number.

I stamped it on the green cardstock, then on the brick, brown, and plum.  I mounted the brown leaf and the plum acorn (cut out) onto the orange card. Then I cut openings in the green card front, cutting out the leaf and acorn along the outline, so you can see down into the ones I mounted onto the orange card.  I attached the green card over the orange card using foam mounting tape for dimension, and to give the openings "windows."  I attached the brick leaf with foam tape over the green card.

All images were colored with Berol Prismacolor pencils, with white added.  I distressed the edges, and added highlights with the clear Stardust gel pen.  Three rhinestones were added to finish off the ATC.

I can't wait to see what I get back.  I made 10, and will receive 9 back.  I will post them when I receive all of them.  Here's a link to the Magenta Group on Yahoo, if you're interested in joining the group. It has lots of interesting challenges, swaps, and techniques.  http://groups.yahoo.com/group/MagentaCN/

Now I'm off to bed.  It's been a busy day - Farmer's Market this morning, cleaning the house, laundry, working on Prayer Shawl flyers for the ministry fair at church tomorrow, and making a big pot of chicken noodle soup!!

See you soon.



Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Technique Tuesday - Vellum Embossing

I love vellum.  It gives anything you make an air of elegance.  It is versatile, it's translucent, and there are many techniques available for using it on our cards, pages, and projects. 

In this posting, I am going to talk about pressure embossing on vellum.  This is where an embossing tool is used to actually impress the paper.  Thermal embossing is where you use embossing powder and a heat tool to emboss.  Now that we have our terminology out of the way, let's move on to the technique of pressure embossing on vellum.

For this card, I stamped the heart (Impression-Obsession stamp) onto the vellum with white Staz-On ink.  It is important to use a permanent ink, NOT pigment ink, as it will smear and never dry on the vellum, as vellum has no pores to absorb the ink.  Let the Staz-On dry (you can heat set with your heat tool if you like) before starting.

Turn the stamped vellum so that the stamped image is face-down on a piece of foam (like the foam craft pieces you can get in the craft stores, or a mouse pad), or even a plastic foam bottomed place mat.  Using an embossing stylus (the kind you use with embossing templates), follow the outline of the stamped image, pressing firmly, yet not too hard so you don't poke through the vellum.  Practice a few times on scrap before trying this on your good piece.  You will soon "feel" how much pressure to apply.  You will notice the paper "embossing" itself, and the image will become more pronounced on the front.  Turn the piece over, and there you have it....embossed vellum! 

It is very elegant and so pretty just as it is, but if you choose to add color, as I did on this card, simply use markers to color the wrong side of the image.  The color will show through the front, very softly and elegantly.

Attach with brads, eyelets, or by taping in the design area, or using vellum tape or vellum adhesive spray.

Here is a small enclosure card I made with the embossed vellum technique.  I added texture to the leaf, stem, and petals by "scratching" veins in the  vellum as I embossed.  I also embossed he word create after I stamped it vertically up the left side.

That's it for today.  I hope you enjoy this technique. 

I have been busy making favors and little candy purses for Faith's bridal shower coming up in just over a week and a half now.  I made acrylic post-it holders.  I will post pics later in the week, so be sure to check back.

I also finished my trading cards for the Magenta swap, but the pics came out poorly, so I will have to take them outside in the natural light tomorrow, and will post those later, as well.  So, lots to come back for.  Stay tuned.....


Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Technique Tuesday - Bleached Effects

Yes, you read the title correctly.  Today we are going to use bleach on our cards and projects.  I use regular household bleach, although I have heard of people using the bleach cleaners available for cleaning bathrooms, etc., such as Clorox cleaner with bleach.

What you'll need:  Bleach, Cut n' Dry foam pad or dense sponge, small bowl or plate, rubber stamps, makeup wedges

Stamping with Bleach
  • Create a bleach "stamp pad" by cutting a piece of Cut n' Dry foam pad about 3" x 4".  Pour some bleach into a small bowl, and place the foam side of the pad into the bleach, allowing it to soak up the bleach.  Squeeze out excess so that the sponge is wet, but not dripping.  Place it foam side up in dish or bowl.
  • "Ink" up your stamp using the above prepared bleach pad.  Ink it as you would ink a stamp in an ink pad.
  • Stamp onto your card or project, making sure to hold the stamp down a few seconds to give the bleach time to work into the cardstock.
  • Not all card stock takes bleach the same, and some card stocks will not bleach out.  Always test a scrap piece of your project to see how the bleach reacts with the card stock.  The color that the paper bleaches out may not be what you would expect.
  • Clean your stamp immediately so that it will not dry out from the bleach.  The bleach will not harm your stamp, as long as you clean it with soap and water after using the bleach on it.
Edging with Bleach
  • Pour some bleach into a small watercolor cup.
  • Dip a makeup wedge into the bleach so that it gets some bleach on it.
  • Run the bleached makeup wedge along a torn or straight cut edge of card stock.  The color will fade out from the areas the sponge touches.
Spattering and Painting with Bleach
  • Pour some bleach into a small watercolor cup.
  • Dip a watercolor brush into the bleach.
  • "Paint" stamped image with the bleach brush.  Repeat if necessary until the color you desire is achieved.  The painted areas will remove color from the card stock.
  • To spatter, dip the paintbrush into the bleach, then gently tap the brush over your card or project. The areas that get spattered will lighten and fade.

In this card, I embossed the images in black.  I bleached them as follows:  The top flower I painted the entire flower with the brush with bleach on it.  The center flower I colored with blue and green markers, the I bleached the outside of the flower, just outside the outline of the image, to create a white shadow effet.  The bottome flower I colored with markers the painted the outside around the flower with bleach, creating a whiteish background.

I created the background on the pink layer of this card by inking my stamp with bleach and stamping it repeatedly, as described in the directions above.

This card did not scan well, but the image is a flower which was stamped with bleach.  I also stamped the head of the flower with bleach on the letter G.

There you have it, three cards using bleach.  I hope you enjoyed this Technique Tuesday, and will come back for more.  Give bleach a try, it's fun, and it is always a surprise when you see the results!  Have fun with it.



Sunday, October 4, 2009

Call Me Paparozzi Nana! Meeting Ryan Miller of the Buffalo Sabres!!

We went to Buffalo today for hubby to get fitted for his tux for our daughter's upcoming wedding, and to "return" Keeley after having her since Friday.  We had a great weekend with our granddaughter, and came home tired, but content.  There is nothing like having a four year old tomboy running around your house to keep you young!
On the way home from the tux fitting we all stopped at Wegmans to pick up some groceries (Faith wanted to make soup for Dan who has a cold).  As we're shopping, Faith spotted Ryan Miller of the Buffalo Sabres.  She informed me that he is the "Jim Kelly of hockey," and the top Sabres player.  She asked Dan to take Keeley over to him and ask for his autograph.  But neither of them could make themselves do it.  So, instead, we walked around Wegmans, and every time we saw him (he was with his girlfriend), Faith tried to get the courage to approach him.
Finally, at the checkout, he was two checkouts over.  I said, "Give me Keeley."  I took her, my camera, and a notepad I had in my purse, and went over and waited for him to check out.
He saw me and I motioned to my camera and Keeley.  He shook his head, and when he got through the line, he graciously posed for pictures with Keeley and me, signed an autograph for her, and gave her a high-five and told her he liked her outfit (she and Faith and Dan were all decked out in their Buffalo Bills duds for the game today).  I have posted a couple of the pics here.

I have already sent for the pictures, and can't wait to pick them up so I can scrapbook them.  The kids have his autograph safely framed and put up on Keeley's wall already!  We had a great day, in spite of the rain.  Wish I could say the same for the Bills!  Must be that Miami heat!  I have a very busy week this week, with meetings, talks to prepare and deliver next weekend, and prayer shawls to deliver.  But I hope to get these pics back and get a couple of them scrapbooked and posted soon.  I really must document our mini paparozzi team of Keeley and Nana!
In the meantime, I thought I'd share this card I made for my aunt.  It's a Penny Black stamp, and I watercolored it with markers and highlighted with the Stardust clear gel pen.  I crinkled and distressed the yellow strip behind the image.  Finished off with a ribbon a some knots!
Now, it's off to bed for some much need sleep!

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Fall Inspiration

I made this fall card with Impression-Obsession's clear fall set, and Marvy Matchables inks.  I love the variety of stamps in this set.  The FALL LEAVES verse which waves along the center is actually a straight clear stamp.  When I attached it to the mount, I "waved" it by manipulating it so that it curves up and down. That's one of the things I love about the clear stamps.  They can be manipulated and changed to fit almost any need.

I love fall!!  It's my favorite time of year.  The air is crisp, the harvest is rich, and the color in nature is a feast for the eyes.  Apples are at their juiciest and tastiest, and pie season is just around the corner!  What's not to like?

As I sipped my coffee this morning, I was thinking about the changes my life has taken through the years. Some of them were joyful events, some sad, some lesson-bearing, and some necessary. But each change brought about opportunities for growth.

I thought about how much we are like the trees beginning to turn colors. Most of us dislike change. Change in our lives forces us to look at things differently, to try things we may not want to do. It makes us uncomfortable. It makes us stretch. If only we realized that often change brings about something even more beautiful in our lives, as the colors changing in the fall leaves. Change makes us grow, and strengthens us.

The long, lazy days of summer are behind us. Autumn is unmistakably here, in all her beauty, waiting to be appreciated. Don't let it slip by.  Winter will follow, with now and cold, and even some joys of it's own (ok, so maybe joys is a little stretch). But why worry about that now.  Today has it's own splendor waiting to be savored.  I hope you'll take some time to enjoy this season.  Take a walk, plant some bulbs for spring color, watch the leaves fall, paint a pumpkin, make pumpkin seeds, press some leaves, feed the squirrels, wash all your windows (just wanted to see if your were paying attention), try a new craft or sport, spend time with a child, contact an old friend, start a new project, hug someone.

Who knows, you may just find yourself enjoying the cooler weather, and even looking forward to winter!