Thursday, April 24, 2014

Clean, Graphic & Epic

I'm switching gears today and focusing on the clean and graphic style of design.

My first card features Epic Dad stamps and companion die, Ink Splats and Backgrounds & Borders 4. The bold patterns combined with the graphic nature of the sentiments in Epic Dad are perfect for clean and graphic cards.

Monochromatic cards are a great choice for men.

I started by stamping the card base with Backgrounds & Borders 4.  Then I got out my Oatmeal Cardstock and had some fun with the Epic Dad stamps and dies.  I added a bit of shimmer to the crown using a Wink of Stella pen.  I know guys don't like a ton of glitter, but you can't have a crown that doesn't shine!

Wplus9 Supplies:
Stamps: Epic Dad, Ink Splats, Borders & Backgrounds 4, Banner Basics // Dies: Epic Dad Die // Cardstock: Oatmeal, Kraft

My next card is more appropriate for the tween/teen scene rather than Dad.

Wplus9 Supplies:
Stamps: Ink Splats, Epic Dad // Inks: Sweet Gelato, Silver LiningLake House Dye Ink // Cardstock: Black

This card was so much fun to make!  I didn't really fuss over placement, I just stamped.

Again, I played with some new-to-me color combinations from the PURE COLOR Original 10 Collection; Lake House, Sweet Gelato and Silver Lining paired with black.  Though I liked the simple stamping, I thought it needed a bit more.  Silver embossing, washi tape and an enamel dot finished off this card perfectly.

I hope you are inspired to make some clean and graphic cards.  See you tomorrow when I'm back to share more cards from the April/May release!

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Spring Blooms for Mom

Hello again!  I'm back today with two cards featuring the newly released Spring Blooms Stamp Set, Spring Blooms Dies and Strictly Sentiments 4.

This is actually the first card I made with the new products. Floral stamp sets are by far my favorite and I was immediately drawn to Spring Blooms. I love the mix of flowers and leaves included in the set, there seems to be endless possibilities on how the images can be combined. 

I tend to use a lot of the same color schemes, especially when it comes to flowers.  My thinking isn't so outside the box, until today!  I went with a more modern and trendy combination by combining Wild Mango, Sweet Nectar and Silver Lining. I die cut several blooms and inked each in Wild Mango ink, then rolled the edges in Sweet Nectar before stamping down. This technique is a nice way to add interest to an image. The leaves were stamped twice in Silver Lining ink without reinking.

Next up is a more traditional color combo. Sweet Nectar is quickly becoming a favorite of mine. 

I've framed this beautiful sentiment from Strictly Sentiments 4 with blooms above and below. The placement of the images and sequins help draw your eye right to the sentiment. I found that my stamping was a bit high on the panel, so I stamped one of the border images from Borders & Backgrounds 4 to the bottom. This definitely helped to even out the design.

Thanks for stopping by today.  I'll have more to share with you tomorrow, so make sure to pop in again!!

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Birds & Branches Frame Die Two Ways

Hi, it's Maureen here sharing projects using products from the April/May release.  Today I am sharing two cards featuring the Birds & Branches Frame Die.

Large Frame Dies like Birds & Branches allow you to really be creative.  You can keep them simple or really dress them up.

For my first card I wanted to focus on the negative space.

Wplus9 Supplies:
Stamps: Heartfelt Mix // Dies: Birds & Branches Frame Die // Cardstock: Black

I've been playing around with Distress Markers and watercolor paper a lot lately.  Creating backgrounds like the one above is quick and easy!  Just follow these steps...

Watercolor Backgrounds with Distress Markers

  1. On a piece of watercolor paper, start coloring with your lightest color. Note: Messy coloring is fine, it does not have to be perfect
  2. Color with your next color, overlapping the colors a bit.
  3. Continue adding desired colors using the same method.
  4. Mist the card stock with water. For more extreme water spots, try taking the top off of your mister and flicking water onto the paper. Allow to air dry, or use a heat tool to speed up drying.

I'm a CAS girl, so I kept the rest of my card nice and clean.  The Black Cardstock looks like a silhouette in a night sky.  The stark contrast of the black against the color is just stunning.

My next card uses a much softer palette.

Wplus9 Supplies:
Stamps: Strictly Sentiments 4, Valentine Wishes // Dies: Birds & Branches, Timeless Tags 2 // Cardstock: Sweet Gelato

This time I let the beautiful details of the Birds & Branches Frame Die shine.  I popped the frame up and placed vellum card stock in between the Birds & Branches Frame Die and the card base.  This really softens the look. I added a tag from Timeless Tags 2 and stamped an image from Valentine Wishes.  This little wreath was the perfect size for the bird to perch in.  The sentiment, from Strictly Sentiments 4, was stamped in Sweet Gelato ink.  This card would be perfect for mom for Mother's Day or any other day of the year.

I hope you like my projects today.  I'll be back tomorrow with more.  See you then!

Monday, April 21, 2014

Meet Maureen Merritt and an Online Card Class Giveaway

It's time to meet another of our new Wplus9 Designers.

I'm excited to formally introduce Maureen Merritt!

"Hi, I'm Maureen, a wife, mom and stamper living in Northeastern Pennsylvania.

I have been paper crafting since 2003. My love of photography piqued an interest in scrapbooking, which ultimately led to stamping and card making. THAT is where I have found my passion. I am a minimalist, both in my real life and in my creative space, clean and simple is most definitely my style.

Though you'll usually find me stamping, I also enjoy hiking, reading, Tae Kwon Do and photography.

To say that I am excited to join the Wplus9 design team is an understatement, it's truly an honor and a dream come true!"

Maureen's personal blog: Mama Mo Stamps.

Maureen will be here all week sharing her designs with us featuring our April 2014 Release. You will definitely leave each day inspired to create. Here's a couple that I picked from the lot.

Maureen is spot on when she describes herself as a minimalist. I love her clean and simple style, and the fact that she isn't afraid to go outside of her comfort zone a little as well. But she always manages to rein it in and keep the overall design clean.

No fuss, no muss. Just great use of color, pattern and design.

First, I was pulled in by the color combination here. Using our PURECOLOR Dye Ink in Nautical Navy, Lake House and Bloomsberry, she's created this striking background using Borders & Backgrounds 4. Then her clever use of the Nautical Navy card stock to hold the sentiment. The nice dark color gives the eye somewhere to rest and brings order to the pattern.

Maureen always seems to work the current trends into her designs in a way that stays true to her style as well.

Not that "I" would ever call watercolor a trend. LOL I'm so happy to see it getting it's time in the spotlight within the crafting community.

By constraining the use of watercolor to a straight graphic border and die cut, she's demonstrating a perfect example of adapting watercolor's free spirit into her more orderly style.

And I particularly love how she's stamped the black outlined "hello" from Hand Lettered Hello behind the watercolored Hand Lettered Hello Die. I'm a big fan of stark black against soft watercolors.

Speaking of watercolor...

That's right, there is an upcoming Online Card Class featuring watercolor! I am so excited for this class!

Here's a little bit more about this class:

You don’t have to be an Impressionist painter to create watercolor masterpieces! Explore the many different (and easy!) ways to create beautiful watercolor effects in Online Card Classes’ Watercolor for Cardmakers.

Join Kristina Werner, Jennifer McGuire, Jennifer Rsaza, and friends (including me!) for a fun-filled, all-video, two-week course packed with inspiring, approachable techniques. Starting with easy soft sky washes and progressing to darling hand-painted images, this class is tailor-made for the both the aspiring artist and the cardmaker who wants to add to her go-to collection of on-trend techniques.

Class includes over 30 videos and even more card ideas from top artists with a variety of styles. Visit Online Card Classes to sign up for Watercolor for Cardmakers today, and discover for yourself the fantastic looks you can create with watercolors! (Class begins May 5 but you will have lifetime access to the content.)

Sounds like fun, doesn't it? The generous ladies over at Online Card Classes are letting me give away free class registration to one of you!

To enter, just leave a comment on this post by 11:59 PM EST Friday, April 25, 2014. I will post the winner on Saturday, April 26, 2014.

And, don't forget, Maureen will be back each day for the rest of the week sharing more of her work and inspiration!

Friday, April 18, 2014

Flowers & Frames

Today is my final day to share what I have been up since receiving the Wplus9 April 2014 Release products. By now, many of you are starting to share what you have made with these beautiful new products. I have a seen a few and I look forward to seeing more!

This is the first card I made when I received the new release.

I couldn't wait to ink up those beautiful Spring Blooms and try out the PURE COLOR Dye Ink for the first time. If you've visited my blog recently, you know already that I love them and have been sharing some of my favorite color combinations.

Sweet Nectar, Sweet Gelato, Cranberry Crush, and Appletini is one of them.

I placed the blooms to mimic the flow of the Hand Lettered Hello sentiment, but also left a little spot of the right to stamp 'sweet friend'.  I love having these any occasion cards on hand for when I start thinking of a particular far-away friend and want to drop her a note.  Even though texting is faster I still send hand written notes and I know they are appreciated.

Wplus9 Supplies:

Nothing but glitter on this next one.

There are many ways to do this, but I will share with you what I did.

I took a piece of white cardstock that was a little larger than the Birds &Branches Frame die and ran it through my Xyron. Without removing  the protective film I placed the frame die face down onto the card stock; sticky side up.  Then, I ran it though my die cutting machine. After popping out the negative portions of the die, I removed the protective sheet, sprinkled the entire frame with glitter, and voila!

The negative pieces didn't go to waste.  I used those to die cut the hearts using the Love Notes dies and the birds from the Birds & Branches Frame die.  I popped up everything on a card base that had been sponged with Lake House Dye Ink.

Wplus9 Supplies:
Stamps: Sweet Nothings // Inks: Lake House Dye Ink // Dies: Birds & Branches Frame, Love Notes   // Cardstock: White

I'm really excited to share this final card with you.

I used the Foliage Frame Die to create a custom frame for my Folk Art Alphabet monogram. And, it can be made to any size you like.

Step-by-Step Instructions:
  1. Die cut frame.
  2. Measure opposite corners to desired length and trim.
  3. Adhere at corners.

To hide the seams, I embellished the corners with Spring Blooms stamps and dies.

It's that easy!

Wplus9 Supplies:

I've really enjoyed sharing my projects with you this week. I look forward to Monday when Dawn will introduce another new DT member and we will get to see what she has been working on!

Thursday, April 17, 2014

A Birthday Hello

I don't know about you, but the cards I need most often are birthday cards. I love to mail out and hand deliver them. I just gave one to a co-worker yesterday.  She was so surprised that I remembered;  I could tell it made her feel special and I love that!

Hand Lettered Hello is perfect for birthdays and so much more. Mixed with other images and sentiments from the Wplus9 April Release, you can make a special birthday card for everyone on your list.

This first card combines bright, cheery colors and a bold, yet minimal pattern.

I created the pattern using one of the stamps in the Borders & Backgrounds 4 set.

Stamping first the vertical and horizontal, then the diagonals created these star-like images.  After stamping the three images I cut the cardstock strip in half directly down the center of the star images.  What I was left with were what looked to me like sun bursts! I placed them on either side of my sentiment panel and lined them with strips of cardstock colored with Wild Mango Dye Ink to cover the seam.

The sentiments from Hand Lettered Hello work so well with Strictly Sentiments 4, making it easy to create customized sentiments for your recipient.

My next card is perfect for the little girl in your life.

The off-set chevron pattern, Ink Splats, and glittered flowers from Birds & Branches make it fun!

The chevron was created using modeling paste mixed with distress paint. It was applied to the white cardstock panel using a stencil.  After it was dry, I cut it into three pieces using a curved die. I pieced it back together in such a way that the chevrons did not line up.

Embellished with a pink Hand Lettered Hello die cut sentiment and some enamel dots the card is ready to send.

Wplus9 Supplies:
Stamps: Ink Splats, Hand Lettered Hello //Dies: Hand Lettered Hello, Birds & Branches Frame// Cardstock: White

Finally, I have a birthday card for a guy, young or old, in shades of blue.

Using another single stamp from Borders & Backgrounds 4, I created a pattern by alternating the direction of the stamp as well as the color each time I stamped it. Lake House Dye Ink and Nautical Navy Dye Ink are the perfect compliment to one another.

I added 'A Birthday Hello' using the Hand Lettered Hello stamp set and die. I mounted it onto a white cardstock base that was embossed with a pattern that reinforces the dot pattern.

So glad you stopped by today. Join me tomorrow for my final day of projects!

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Masculine Cards Made Easy

Welcome Back!

Today I am switching gears from feminine to masculine. Many of us struggle with masculine cards.  Even when creating a very graphic card I have to resist the temptation to put a flower on it ;)

The Wplus9 April Release contains stamps and dies that make masculine cards easy to do.

This first card features a custom layered sentiment, for dad, created by mixing 3 of the new stamp sets, Hand Lettered Hello, Epic Dad, and Strictly Sentiments 4. The 'hello' and the darkest arrow in the background are stamped in Appletini Dye Ink and the color  works in beautifully with other inks in my collection to create a monochromatic look.

The background is created using a little arrow stamp from the Borders & Backgrounds 4. There are six arrows in the pinwheel pattern, 3 of each color.

This card is perfect for Father's Day or as a birthday card for dad.

My next card was created with my nephews in mind.  I have 5 of them ranging in age from 7-18.

I've made my fair share of boy birthday cards over the years. Although I made this card with the Epic Dad stamp set you can see it's not just for dads. It's perfect for boy's birthday, congratulations/special occasions and even feminine cards, as Joni showed us! I wanted to keep the background neutral and add pops of color on the main sentiment.

QUICK TIP: Make sure to thoroughly clean your stamp between colors. Allow each layer to dry before stamping a new color to prevent the colors from becoming muddy.

To create the focal point of the card I stamped 'epic' in black ink on the Epic Dad coordinating die and then heat embossed it with clear embossing powder. I used Ink Splats to stamp vibrant color with distress paints. I added a bit of paint to my craft sheet, tapped the stamp into the paint, and then tapped onto a clean section of the craft sheet to make sure I had an even layer of paint rather than a huge blob.  In between each color and when I was all done, I washed my stamp in the sink with water and a nail brush to make sure I got all of the paint off of the stamp.

The stripes and stars were added using stencils and black ink applied with a sponge dauber.

Wplus9 Supplies:
Stamps: Ink Splats, Epic Dad  // Dies: Epic Dad Die // Cardstock: White, Black

My last card today is a simple, one-layer card and matching envelope.

I love using kraft cardstock on masculine cards and  I think the Wplus9 Dye Inks look great stamped on it.

Thanks again for stopping by. I hope you're having a great day.

See you tomorrow!


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