My First Attempt at Creating with Colorado Craft Company Stamps

I was so incredibly lucky to win the beautiful Blissful Butterflies stamp set from Colorado Craft Company. Debby Hughes was having a giveaway on her blog, and I was one of the commenters gifted. If you don’t follow Debby, you really should. Her card artistry is absolutely amazing! Her blog is called Lime Doodle Design.

This is my first stamp set from Colorado Craft Company, and I just have to say, the quality and creativity of their stamps sets is top notch. The images are large and very beautifully designed.

I started by stamping the two butterfly images and one of the leaf images onto a 4 x 5 1/4″ piece of Bristol card stock with Versafine Onyx Black ink. I started coloring the butterflies using my Zig Clean Color Markers (052, 032) and my waterbrush. To add a bit more dimension to the butterflies, I pulled out my Cretacolor pencils (orange 11, prussian blue 61). Finally, to help define the butterflies, I used my N0 and N3 Copic markers (outlining around each butterfly and coloring the bodies).

I stepped away for a bit, and came back to see how I felt about the white space that was left. It just seemed a bit too noticeable to me, so I found a small dot stamp from the Simon Says Stamp Spring Flower Burst stamp set and used that to fill in some of that open white space. I also filled in the dots with a black Sharpie marker.

For the sentiment, I used Reverse Confetti’s Lots to Say stamp set. I heat embossed it onto a scrap piece of vellum using Recollections Ebony embossing powder.

To coordinate with the black stamped images, I decided that the white card front needed a black mat. I still wanted the Simon Says Stamp Fog card base to be visible, so I made my mat just slightly larger than the stamped image. To attach the sentiment, I wrapped it around the black matted card front and adhered it on the back (vellum is so hard to attach without the glue showing 🙂 All that was left was to attach the card front to the card base.

I hope you like it!

Cute Birthday Card Using Both Digital and Stamped Images

I have collected so many digital images that I just never seem to think about once I store them away in the appropriate folder on my computer.  After seeing a recent Instagram post from Kathy Racoosin (@kathyrac) where she colored a gorgeous digital image, I was inspired to go through my stash to find something that I could use on the birthday card that I was making.  As you’ll see, I decided to start pretty small, but I’m hoping that it will inspire me to use more digital images in the future.

My Empty Nest Creations Birthday Card using Bugaboo Digital RPHello image

I started by ink blending my background (4×5 1/4″) using Distress Oxides Broken China, Blueprint Sketch, Faded Jeans and Black Soot.  As you can see, I had a slight mishap on the lower part, but I kept going because I figured that I could “hide” it a bit with my dog image.  (For some reason, the mishap isn’t so obvious on the real card.  Lighting and camera seem to highlight it.)  I finished the background adding some water spritzes and some white heat embossed stars using Simon Says Stamp Birthday Celebrations stamp set.  The final touch for the background was a few clouds cut from vellum using Ellen Hutson Silver Linings die set.  In order to hide the spray adhesive on the clouds, I simply added some white gel pen lines.

On to the stamping and coloring…Using Spectrum Noir paper, I stamped the heart balloon from Concord & 9ths Monster Love stamp set using Gina K Amalgam ink, and I printed the cute dog from Bugaboo Digital Stamps (RPHello).  After some very basic coloring, I fussy cut both images and put them aside to dry a bit.

Putting everything together was easy.  Using foam squares for some dimension, I adhered the dog and balloon in places that would leave room for the birthday banner.  Before adding the banner, I tied and glued the string around the balloon end.  While I let that dry, I stamped the greeting using Hero Arts Stamp & Cut Ribbon Messages stamps, but I knew that I wanted to have a portion of the banner to wrap around the balloon string.  To do this, I used the partial die cutting technique that Jennifer McGuire has shown many times on her blog.  I let the die cut most of the image, but left the left side of the die off the cutting pad.  Using my scissors, I added a bit to wrap around the string.

Once the glue was dry on the balloon string, I attached the banner and glued the string to the dog’s paw, and called it done!

Thanks for visiting 🙂

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p.s.  If you’re not following Kathy on Instagram, you really should.  She is so incredibly talented and a genuinely nice person.  Also, be sure to check out Bugaboo Digital Stamps to see some adorable images.

My First Floral Scene Card

I don’t know about you, but I struggle to create those adorable scene cards that are so popular these days.  Obviously, I don’t have all of the stamps/dies that card makers use to create these complex scenes, but I certainly have enough to work with to make a simple scene.  I decided to give it another try.

My Empty Nest Creations Simple Floral Scene Card

I started by making a very simple ink blended background using Broken China, Twisted Citron and Peeled Paint Distress Oxides.  For the clouds and sun, I pulled out my never used Gina Marie Designs nature set.  I didn’t want the clouds to disappear in the sky, so I inked the edges with the Broken China Distress Oxide ink pad.  To give the clouds a bit of dimension, I adhered one of the small clouds with foam tape.

My Favorite Things Doodle Blossoms stamp/die set has been on my wishlist for a very long time.  I finally bought them and knew that they’d be perfect for this card.  I stamped the flowers and one set of stem/leaves and colored them with Copic markers.  To give the flowers a bit more detail, I used a white gel pen.  For the other two stems/leaves, I used Paper Smooches Best Buds and Simon Says Stamp Best Mom Ever stamp sets.  I attached the flower blossoms with foam tape to give the scene more dimension.

All that was left was the sentiment.  Inspired by Stamping’s Magnolias stamp set had the perfect greeting.  I heat embossed “Live Life in Full Bloom” with black embossing powder and called it done.

I hope you like it!

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My Entry for Freshly Made Sketches #349

This week’s Freshly Made Sketches sketch is very basic.  I love that it provides a simple jumping off point and leaves you with a chance to interpret it many ways.

FMS Final 349-001

For this card, I decided to pull out some of my older stamps and dies.  Every now and then I like to dig through my supplies and pick a few items out that I haven’t used in a long while.  Quite often, I find myself only focusing on the bright, shiny new stamps and dies that I want to add to my collection and forget about the older ones that are still awesome, too.

My Empty Nest Creations Hero Arts Floating Blossoms Thank You Card

I started by stamping the Hero Arts Floating Blossom background stamp onto a A2 size piece of Bristol card stock using Memento Tuxedo Black ink.  The flowers were colored with Copic markers (very basic…very little color blending or shading).  To make them pop a bit and give a little shadow, I outlined each of the flowers with a few cool gray Copics.  To define the image better, I also outlined each of the flowers/leaves with a fine tip black Sharpie.

The thank you greeting was cut from black card stock using the Die-Versions Thank You Express Edge die.  I thought that the card needed another little bit of contrast, so I cut a strip from my favorite patterned paper, My Favorite Things Black & White Stripe pad, and added it to the bottom.

After adhering the card front to my A2 card, I thought that it needed just a little something more, so I used my Wink of Stella glitter pen to give the flowers some sparkle (unfortunately, this shows in the photo as more of a white mess on some of the flowers…trust me, they are glittery in person 🙂

Thanks for visiting!

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Altenew’s Happy Bloom Birthday Card

I’m not sure how new this stamp set is, but it is certainly new to me.  I just love the floral arrangement and the banner that’s perfect for the sentiment.

My Empty Nest Creations Birthday Card using Altenew's Happy Bloom setI’m not the best Copic colorer (I definitely need to watch more videos and practice a lot!).  I just used two or three color blending for each flower and leaf, and put a few gray shadows on the banner.  For a little interest, I used my white gel pen to give a few of the flowers a bit more detail.  Some black sequins finished it up.  I struggled with what color to mat the flower image and decided on purple to bring out the largest flower.  The sentiment is from the same Altenew Happy Bloom stamp set.  After all of that, I felt the flowers looked a little flat so I pulled out my Wink of Stella pen and sparkled them up!

IMG_1749

Happy spring everyone!

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Who Doesn’t Love an Adorable Koala?

I have had Neat & Tangled’s Koalifications stamp and die set for just a little while, and I can’t believe that it’s taken me this long to use it.  This koala is just precious.  I knew that I wanted to make him the highlight of my next card.

My Empty Nest Creations Rainbow Background Neat & Tangled Koalifications Card

After stamping and cutting him out with the matching die, I colored him with Copic markers.  I’m really just a beginner at using Copics, so this coloring was very simple—RV02 for the slightly rosy cheeks and C0, C1, C3 and C5 for the rest of him.  (I always like to either restamp the image or use a black fine tip marker to go over the outlines after coloring.)  I used one of the sentiments from the same stamp set that fits perfectly on the banner.

Next…making the perfect background for this little guy.  Like many card makers, I just can’t resist bright rainbow colors.  I taped off the stripe areas with 1/2″ micropore tape, and then I ink blended the stripes with Distress Oxides (Wilted Violet, Picked Raspberry, Spiced Marmalade, Squeezed Lemonade, Twisted Citron and Salty Ocean).  I adhered the cutie-patootie koala to the background with foam tape.  The card needed just a bit more punch, so I cut some small hearts using the heart die from the same die set.  To get the hearts to match the colors of the stripes, I simply blended some of the colors onto some white card stock scraps.  Voila…perfect color match to the stripes.

I hope this little guy makes you smile just a bit!

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A Very Simply Cut Out Card

I’ve wanted to try this cut out technique for a while.  I’m pretty sure it was Jennifer McGuire that inspired this card.

My Empty Nest Creations Cut Out window card using Paper Smooches Best Buds stamps and dies

I started with a vertical top folding A2 card base.  I die cut the flower/mason jar image from Paper Smooches Best Buds dies.  Using the cut out as a template, I fit the matching stamp in the cut out space and stamped it through the window using Memento Tuxedo Black ink (love my Tim Holtz Stamp Platform).  I colored the image using Copic markers with very simple blending.  To give the flowers a little more detail, I pulled out my white gel pen and Micron black marker.  The sentiment is from Altenew’s Penned Rose stamp set.

This was such a simple card, but I really loved how it turned out.  I hope you like it, too.

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Diagonal Floral Peeking Card

I am a huge fan of Ardyth’s blog Maskerade, and this card is a copy of one of her latest cards.  Be sure to check out her card here.

My Empty Nest Creations Diagonal Floral So Very Blessed Card

I started by masking off the diagonal portion using painter’s tape.  Using Honey Bee Stamp’s Zen Floral stamp set, I stamped several images with Memento Tuxedo Black ink.  I didn’t bother masking any of this stamping because I was able to use many of the small stamps to fill in any spaces.  I colored some of the flowers with Copic markers (just one color with no blending).  My sentiment is from an older Technique Tuesday set called So Blessed.  After that was stamped, I felt that the floral area would stand out a bit better if I just drew a thin black border on the edges.  I felt that just adding those small lines made such a difference.

thanks for visiting!

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A Card for a Friend

Unity Stamp Company is one of my favorite cling stamp companies.  Their stamp images range from adorable to incredibly elegant and everything in between.  I’m convinced that anyone would find something that they liked in their stamp inventory.  Best of all, their stamp quality is hard to beat.  The images stamp beautifully and clean up is a breeze.

My Empty Nest Creations Unity Stamp Lil Bloomin Owl over Watercolor BackgroundI had a leftover piece from some watercolor playing, so I decided to use it for the base of my latest card.  I diecut it using Avery Elle’s Wonky Stitches die to give it that cute loose stitching along the edges.  Unity’s Lil’ Bloomin Owl has been sitting on my desk waiting to make an appearance, so I thought he’d be the perfect star for my card.  I stamped him with Memento ink onto Copic Blend It Paper, and colored him with Copic markers.  As you can see, I need a lot of practice using my Copics, but I think he turned out okay.  After fussy cutting him out, I used foam tape to pop him up.  My greeting is from another Unity stamp set, Lil Bunny Peeps.  I white heat embossed it onto black card stock and adhered it with my tape runner.

To mat my card front, I chose a color that I definitely don’t use very often, green, but I think it coordinated perfectly with the watercolor background.  I chose a kraft colored cardbase rather than a white one because my watercolor paper isn’t truly white.

I hope you like it!

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Inspired by Stamping Cherry Blossoms

Okay…My Version of Cherry Blossoms 🙂

Inspired by Stamping is a new-to-me stamp company, and I’m so glad I found them.  I purchased the Cherry Blossoms stamp set recently, and I’ve been dying to use it on a card.  I saw an Instagram post by Kathy Racoosin where she drew black horizontal stripes on her card base using a Copic marker.  I knew that I wanted to give that a try, and since I love yellow and black together, I decided to make my cherry blossoms yellow.  Crazy right?

My Empty Nest Creations using Inspired by Stamping Cherry Blossoms

Like I said, I drew the dark gray lines (Copic N10) on my card front first and put that aside.  Using Bristol paper, I stamped several floral groupings and used Copics Y15, Y17 and YG63 to do very simple coloring.  I cut out the stamped base for the floral piece and added individual petals with foam glue dots to give it dimension.  I wanted the flowers to appear as if they were coming off of the card.  All that was left was to add a greeting.  I chose one from the same stamp set.

I was going to frame the card front with black card stock but decided against it.  I truly wanted the flowers to be the focal point.

I hope you like it.


Supplies Used:

  • Neenah Solar White 110# card stock
  • Bristol paper
  • Copic markers
  • Memento Tuxedo Black ink