Using an Older but “New to Me” Stamp Set

Wish Big Stamp & Die Set by Julie Ebersole for Ellen Hutson

I just purchased this stamp and die set recently (but I’ve been wanting it since it first came out).  I just love the adorable hippo and bird with all of the birthday extras!  Before starting most cards, I check two of my favorite sketch sites.  I decided to go with the Freshly Made Sketches challenge this week.

Here is FMS #284…

FMS Final 284-001

and here is my entry…

My Empty Nest Creations Hippo Birdie Card using Wish Big stamps/dies by Julie EbersoleTo start, I cut even strips of bright card stock from my scraps (thanks Jennifer McGuire for the inspiration!).  I adhered them in rainbow order vertically on to the center of a 3.5 x 5.5″ piece of white card stock.  I stamped the hippo and bird using Memento Tuxedo Black ink because I wanted to color them with Copic markers.  After coloring the animals, two party hats and two balloons, I used the matching dies to cut them out.  To give the party hats a little bit of character, I used a Signo Uni-Ball white pen to add dots and stripes.  I knew that I wanted the balloons to be cut out of the vertical stripe area to represent the hearts on the sketch.  I decided on the placement of the hippo and bird and die cut the balloons out of the rainbow card front.

In starting to put together the card, I realized that the rainbow card front needed some kind of mat to prevent it from hiding.  I cut a piece of black card stock the same height but 1/4″ wider.  I glued those pieces together and then attached the animals and balloons with foam tape for dimension.  I used a piece of patterned paper from My Mind’s Eye Happy Day 6×6 paper pad to cover the card base and attached the rainbow piece in the center.  I white heat embossed the greeting onto black card stock, cut the fishtail end and attached it next to the balloon so that it almost looks like it is flying with the balloon.

Thanks for stopping by!

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Freshly Made Sketches Challenge #281

I have been wanting to use my latest Simon Says Stamp Watercolor Friendly Flowers for a while now, and the latest Freshly Made Sketches sketch seemed like a good place to start.

Here is the latest sketch…

FMS Final 281-001

This is the card that I made…

My Empty Nest Creations card using Simon Says Stamp Artsy Flowers

I started by white heat embossing the outlined flowers in the set.  I pulled out my Zig clean color markers and selected a few softer colors that worked well together.  I used a water brush to disperse the color on each petal.  Once they were dry, I heat embossed the center portions of the flowers with Zing Metallic Silver embossing powder using my embossing pen.  They still needed a little something more, so out came my Wink of Stella clear glitter pen.

On to my card design…I knew that I wanted a little color on the white background where my flowers were going to go, so I lightly ink blended an area in the center with Tumbled Glass Distress Ink.  I liked the 3 horizontal stripes on the sketch, but I really wanted my flowers to be the highlight.  I found a very old stamp set from TPC Studio called Dots and Stripes.  (I’m so glad that I dug into my stamp collection because these stamps are fantastic!)  I chose one of the dot border stamps and stamped it 3 times with Versamark ink and used the same silver metallic embossing powder as before.

My Empty Nest Creations card using Simon Says Stamp Artsy FlowersI fiddled around with my flower placement until I liked what I saw.  I glued 4 of the flowers on to the white base and adhered 2 with some fun foam to give the grouping some dimension.  For my greeting, I chose the “just for you” stamp from a 3×3 set from Lia Griffith (Hero Arts) and stamped it in black.

I knew that the card base needed to be something other than white, so I went with my next favorite, light gray.  I think it coordinates well with the silver embossing.

I hope you like it!

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Getting Out of My Color Comfort Zone

With the Help of Freshly Made Sketches

I know the trend in card making is now about florals and bright colors.  I’ve found myself getting too comfortable with those designs.  I wanted to change it up a bit (at least for me) by using colors that I never really even think of when starting a card – orange and navy.

Now, for the design…I went to one of my usual sites for inspiration–Freshly Made Sketches.  Here is the latest sketch…

FMS Final 280-001

While I usually don’t follow their sketches to the letter, I just received a new stamp set that is perfect—Hampton Arts Lift Me Up.  The detailed butterfly is gorgeous, and the sayings are terrific.

My Empty Nest Creations Card using Hampton Art's Lift Me Up Stamp SetI started off by white heat embossing the butterfly on navy Bazzill card stock towards the bottom right corner of the paper.  I wanted this image to be kind of a shadow for the main butterfly.  Next, I stamped the butterfly  with Momento Tuxedo Black ink and cut it out with the matching die.  I colored the butterfly with Copic markers and added a few small white extras with my white gel pen.  I attached the butterfly with foam tape to give it some dimension.  For the last touch, I covered the butterfly with my Wink of Stella clear glitter pen.  The “You Lift Me Up” greeting from the stamp set seemed to perfect, so I white heat embossed it on the bottom left corner.

I knew that I needed to accent the card with some orange to balance the orange butterfly, so I cut the navy card stock slightly so that I could have a strip of orange on the left side of the card.  Then, I realized that the card front was still a little dark, so I trimmed a slight edge off of the top and bottom so that the white card base would peak through.  Once all of that was done, this card still needed something else.  I’ve really been trying to incorporate sequins (another card trend) on to my cards, but I didn’t have any orange ones (remember, orange is not one of my go-to colors 🙂  Then, I remembered seeing Jennifer McGuire use her Copic markers to color some pearl accents.  I found my pearl dots and colored them with one of the same orange Copic markers that I used on the butterfly.  They were the perfect final touch on my card.

I hope you like it!

Need Something to Brighten Someone’s Birthday?

I’m on a rainbow kick, and I’m pretty sure that it has something to do with this crazy weather we’re having.  I really shouldn’t complain when I see pretty much everyone north of the Mason-Dixon line shoveling like crazy.  As a former northerner, it gives me flashbacks!

I made this card (along with some others) to give to some friends as a small birthday gift.  I wanted something that was pretty generic as far as birthday cards go.  I figured that children or adults would enjoy receiving this bright, cheerful card.

Rainbow Ink Blending Birthday Card by My Empty Nest Creations

 

I started off by heat embossing, with Recollections Gold Embossing Powder, the Hero Arts Tiny Star Background stamp.  I used Barn Door, Mustard Seed and Broken China Distress Inks to ink blend the background.  I just love Neat & Tangled’s Celebrate dies, so I knew that I had to gold heat emboss the detailed die cut.  So that it wouldn’t get lost on the background, I also cut the die from black card stock and adhered it to the back of the gold die cut.  It gave it a slight shadow–exactly what I wanted.  To tie in the black shadow on the die, I white heat embossed a happy birthday greeting from the Altenew Birthday Greetings stamp set onto black card stock.

Because I’m so pleased with how this card turned out, I’ve included it in my Etsy shop.  I hope you like it 😉

Using Ink Blending with a Detailed Background Stamp

The Latest Freshly Made Sketch Challenge

I just love the Freshly Made Sketch Challenge blog.  Their sketches are so wonderful because they allow for a lot of creative freedom.  They never fail me when I’m in a little bit of a creative slump.  If you’ve lost your creative mojo, you should definitely check them out!  They even have all of their sketches archived.

Here is this week’s sketch…               and this is what I came up with…

fms277

 

My Empty Nest Creations Distress Ink Blended Rainbow Card

 

 

 

 

 

 

I started with an A2 size piece of Bristol paper and white heat embossed it using the Hero Arts wave background stamp.  This was my first time using this stamp.  I always worry a bit when I’m using a detailed background stamp, but let me tell you, it stamped beautifully!  I just love Hero Arts stamps and my Misti of course.

Using Tim Holtz Distress Inks (Picked Raspberry, Carved Pumpkin, Cracked Pistachio, Mermaid Lagoon and Wilted Violet), I ink blended the whole piece in a rainbow like design.  I die cut a frame from the Lil’ Inker Designs Dual Dotted Rectangles die set, and glued it on the left side of my card front.  I cut away the part of the frame that wasn’t attached to the card front, and using the same Distress Inks, I ink blended the frame to match the base.  I love how the frame got a little bit of the deeper colors.  I think this prevented it from disappearing into the background a little.

Now for the sentiment…I’ve been wanting to try the Hello die from Mama Elephant for a while.  I gold heat embossed it twice to give it a little dimension and adhered it in the bottom left corner of the frame.  I cut off the front portion of the die cut that didn’t fit on the card.  For a few final touches, I glued a some sequins just above the greeting.  I trimmed the card front just a smidge (is that a word?) because I wanted the Neenah Solar White 110# card base to frame this colorful piece.

I hope you like it.  Thanks for stopping by 🙂


Supplies Used:

Hero Arts Wave Background stamp, Recollections Snow and Gold embossing powders, Tim Holtz Distress Inks, Lil’ Inker Designs Dual Dotted Rectangles die set, Mama Elephant Hello die, Neenah Solar White 110# card stock

My Latest Ink Blended Card

I haven’t made anything for several days, and I can always tell when it’s time to create.  So, I pulled out some newly purchased stamps from Lil’ Inker Designs (I just love their stuff), and went to work.

Distress Ink Blended Thank You Card by My Empty Nest CreationsOf course, I started with my favorite card size, A2 4.25″ x 5.5″, made from Neenah Solar White 110# card stock.  I then cut another 4.25″ x 5.5″ piece of white card stock for my ink blending and embossing layer.  First, I white heat embossed the floral images from Lil’ Inker’s Inky Flowers stamp set.  I knew that I wanted the flowers to be on a good portion of the card, so I had to do this in multiple steps because of the size of the images.  Then, I set to work on my ink blending.  I used both Blueprint Sketch and Wilted Violet Distress Inks.  After I was done ink blending, I gently rubbed a baby wipe across the floral images to remove any ink that may have landed on the white embossed areas.  To finish the base layer, I sprayed a light water mist over the top.  (I just love to watch Distress Inks react with water.)  For one last detail, I spritzed my Tsukineko Shimmer Spritz over the enter surface to give it a little sparkle.  In order to do something a little different than just adhering this whole piece on the card base, I decided to cut it up in a few pieces.  After I cut them, I felt that they needed a little something to help define the edges a bit, so I used my ink blending tool and gave the edges another layer of ink.  I arranged the pieces so that there was a slight gap between them when I adhered them with dimensional adhesive.  That left just the greeting.  I thought that a silver embossed greeting would blend perfectly with the Distress Ink colors that I chose.  I cut a thank you greeting from Heidi Swapp’s thank you die and cut it in half so that I had a two word greeting.  I silver heat embossed it with Zing Silver Metallic embossing powder.  I just love how embossing a die cut gives it so much dimension.  To finish it off, I glued the greeting on the top with some liquid glue.

I hope you like it!

CAS(E) this Sketch #205

Another one of my favorite card sketch challenge sites is CAS(E) this Sketch.  Their sketches always challenge me to try and think outside the box (which is a pretty difficult thing for me).

Here is their latest sketch…

cts_205

and here’s what I came up with…

1_22_17-case-this-sketch-love-card-img_0822I started off with my favorite size card base–A2 4.25″ x 5.5″ made from kraft card stock.  I then cut my patterned paper from 2 different 6×6 My Mind’s Eye paper pads by eyeballing it.  I have to get better at being more precise when it comes to cutting paper 🙂

Using the Pierced Heart Stax dies from My Favorite Things, I cut the hearts out of the top kraft layer, the blue layer and the yellow layer, leaving the red layer alone.  I adhered all of the layers so that the hearts lined up.

After seeing it all put together, I thought it looked a little dull, so I added the black strips along the outside cut edge because I knew that my greeting was going to be black.  I triple cut the love greeting from the Simon Says Stamp Love die set and glued them together to give a little dimension to the greeting.  Even after that, it still looked a little plain, so I pulled out my newly acquired black Nuvo drops and added those above the heart and below the greeting.  I also added the small kraft heart in the center from the Pierced Heart Stax smallest die.

I hope you like it!