Saturday, September 30, 2017

Belly Shots and a bit of Labour!

It seems I didn't end up taking a whole lot of belly-shots this time around. But towards the end of my pregnancy I clearly thought I should remedy that and purposefully took a few. I was able to then fit them all onto one page in Shiloh's baby album!

I used a combination of ready-made cards from older Studio Calico Documenter kits, as well as a couple of cards I made myself from scraps of paper and a few embellishments. It was just the right balance of keeping the spread quick and simple, as well as still being a bit creative.

Oh, and of course, I needed to leave plenty of space for some journaling!

Keeping the album as chronological as possible (at least at this stage!) I then went on to create this page about the day she was born.

I started with some photos of the creative talents of my two eldest daughters as it related to my labour. Moriah made me a "happy pushing" card, and Bethany drew this fabulous picture of how she imagined the birth to go! They both made me laugh so much I needed to document their efforts!

That middle picture of me with the funny smile? That's totally in the middle of labour!
And then the more genuine smile of relief and amazement and love as I'm holding our new baby for the first time :-)

So happy I'm getting these memories documented whilst they're still fairly new in my head!

Monday, September 25, 2017

Man Crush Monday

I have to admit, when I got the packet of wood veneer hashtags in a Studio Calico kit some time back, I had no idea what the #mcm meant! I totally had to Google it!

And once I knew, I actually didn't think I'd have any reason to use it. But then I caught sight of this picture of my dirt-covered snotty-nosed little Judah-bug and knew I'd found the perfect place to put it!!

For the record, there was also a #wcw in the packet as well... and despite using up quite a few of the other pieces on this spread I couldn't quite pretend to be that hip and use it as well!

Most of the cards and other embellishments on this spread though actually come from the May Documenter kit from Studio Calico called 'Alfresco'. It's such a favourite of mine. I have completely and utterly fallen in love with their kits again the last few months.. they keep getting better and better!

Oh yeah.... in case you're wondering what's in that bulging little envelope? It's totally all of Moriah's baby teeth!!
Why do we feel the need to keep these things?! LOL!

Saturday, September 23, 2017

Neat and Tangled September Release

The new release September goodies at Neat and Tangled are awesome as always!

I used the cute foxes from the Merry Kisses stamp set, and their matching dies as the focal point on this card. But instead of the traditional orange or red colour for the foxes, I thought I would turn them into Arctic foxes by keeping them a grey and white colour.

It matched my idea of using the Landscapes stencil to create snowdrifts. I used some texture paste and sprinkled superfine white glitter all over the top of it. The set of two stencils are the inverse of each other so it allows for some fun tricks, and I sponged on some blue ink into the gaps. 

The second time I used my Landscapes stencils I made more of a country wheatfields kind of look by stamping the Landscapes Textures through it in a variety of orange and yellow tones.

I also turned the Oak Leaf die into a tree instead, and used this card as my Father's Day card!! My dad is a farmer so it made sense in my eyes ;-)

Also this month at Neat and Tangled we have been partnering with Benzie Design who make the most luscious felt. I got rather practical by starting work on Moriah's birthday invitations already (it's actually not until November, but it feels good to be organised!) using the Magical Day stamp set.

Inspired by the unicorn theme I used the Benzie felt to create a headdress she can wear to the party! I have more details and even a video tutorial on how to make these up on the Neat and Tangled blog HERE.

And you can find all the new release stamps, dies, stencils and sequins in the shop HERE.

PS. I'm giving away a Magical Day stamp set on my Instagram account this weekend. You can find me HERE.

Friday, September 22, 2017

Letters to Tikvah

Tikvah has been our 'in utero' name for each of our pregnancies. It began with our first baby. Not knowing her sex and therefore having double the options of names, we were finding it hard. One day I opened the Name Book at a random page and stuck my finger out with my eyes closed. "We're going to call the baby.... Tikvah!" I exclaimed as I read what I was pointing at.

And so it stuck.

Moriah became Tikvah II, Judah was Tikvah III and Shiloh was called Tikvah IV.

I started creating Shiloh's baby album whilst I was still pregnant, and one of the things I wanted to do was to get the other kids to contribute. I asked each of them to write her a letter - welcoming her to the family, detailing some hopes they have for the future, and whatever else they wanted to include. Judah was less than 2 at the time so his is more like a bunch of scribbles... but I love it just the same!

I tucked each letter into a little pocket, and this became the first page in her baby album.
It makes me happy!

Thursday, September 21, 2017

Coffee is Love, Love is Coffee

I've been meaning to make something for the Coffee Lovers Bloghop pretty much every time they come around. After all.... I do love coffee! But I haven't found the opportunity before now.

Yay! Yesterday I coordinated a 2 year old and a 2 month old's naps and I got some time to craft!!
The theme (apart from coffee... or tea... or cocoa) is Fall and so I started by deciding on an appropriate colour scheme and then went from there.

I recently bought a new 6x6" stencil which I wanted to try out. It's called Buffalo Plaid by Carta Bella and I got mine HERE. I can see lots of possibilities with this and it was really fun to use! So that became the background for my card.

And then I used a combination of Neat and Tangled's Perfect Blend stamp set for the coffee cups, and Krumspring's Coffee is Love stamp set for the sentiment.

I filmed a very impromptu timelapse video of my process if you care to check it out! I'm not sure if it'll work very well here in Blogger, but I'll upload it to my Instagram account as well!

You can find all the details for the Coffee Lovers Fall Bloghop HERE

Wednesday, September 13, 2017

Bunches of Country Florals

I used to think I didn't really 'do' floral cards. But that was before I received a big box full of the latest Sizzix Lifestyle releases! I actually let the Trophy Husband do a comeback unboxing video to see his spin on all the new dies, and you can catch that on my YouTube channel HERE.

It's always fun to then see which of the die sets I end up playing with first because usually these are the ones that become long term favourites. One of the sets that caught my eye was the Country Florals set.

I love that it includes dies for a bunch of different flowers as well as leaves..... and it also includes those antlers too! I just adore this funky addition and I used them to frame this bouquet for a thankyou card.

I was so inspired I ended up doing another version of the same card design a couple of weeks after the first. This time I opted to tone down the colour palette even more, omit the antlers and layer in a few more flowers instead. That's because I wanted to focus on the florals so that it matched the sentiment I chose.

I stamped the 6" long "thank you" and masked a small section so I could add in the "bunches" as well. These are from the Stretched Sentiments stamp set from Ink Blot Shop (another new favourite aquisition!)

So it turns out I really do love making flowery cards after all! ;-)

Saturday, September 9, 2017

Simon Says Stamp STAMPtember!

I'm so excited to have been asked to contribute to the STAMPtember celebrations at Simon Says Stamp!

As part of the Neat and Tangled team I was sent the exclusive stamp set the two companies have released in collaboration. It's called 'Hello Pumpkin' and it is SUPER cute!! There are matching dies for this as well in case you don't like the fussy cutting involved ;-)
And here's what I've made with it...

I tried to work in as many of the stamps as I could (without going too crazy!) and I ended up with this story-book like scene. It was crying out to be watercoloured so that was the direction I took it.

Just as I was contemplating the fact I very rarely ever make one-layer cards (since I still don't consider myself a stamper and colourer) I decided that I really couldn't resist adding a touch of dimension, and those wood veneer arrows gained a place in the design ;-)

Something else that I really love about this set is that all proceeds from it's sale will be donated to support the medical bills that Danielle's father (Danielle is the founder of Neat and Tangled) is facing during his health battle. You can find more info about that on their GoFundMe page.

You can find this exclusive stamp set and dies at Simon Says Stamp! now. Remember, these are limited edition so once they're sold out they're gone forever.

And if you love this, you might also be interested in the new release products from Neat and Tangled. Some of the sets include the same characters you see here - that bear and mouse - in different scenarios. So cute!! Find them HERE.

Friday, September 8, 2017

Jot Magazine September Mood Board

It's time for another Mood Board challenge at Jot Magazine, and this is what I've made!

This is a bit of a variation on my normal go-to colour scheme of pink and aqua. This time it's mixed with navy and peach as well. I love how these challenges push me to places I wouldn't think of myself!

Here's what the Mood Board looks like:

I started my card first by pulling out some scraps of paper and a few embellishments that match the colour scheme. That's usually how I roll for these types of challenges! I then use them to dictate how the design of my card is going to go as far as focal point and sentiment are concerned.

But of course, I can't forget the mood board itself and on this occasion I draw inspiration from the vertical lines in the bottom two pictures. I line up squares of my patterned paper and then sew it all down with my sewing machine. I let the lines of thread mimic the vertical lines from the mood board.

I hope you'll join in with us for this September version of our challenge! You can find all the details for it HERE on the Jot blog!

Sunday, September 3, 2017

Studio Calico Starlight - the Spetember Release

Oh man, it was totally time I dusted off my layout-making skills and put something big on a 12x12" piece of paper again! The September scrapbook kit from Studio Calico was exactly what I needed to inspire me. The colours and designs in this kit are totally me!
But thinking I might be a little rusty I decided not to go too crazy. I used a 8x12" photo to dominate the page and then just added some clusters of cute things, and highlighted the colours of the photo with some paper strips.

Everything on this page is from the Main Kit Only, with the exception of the alpha stamps I used to create the title. They're called Blocked Alpha and Numbers and are available as a separate purchase.

I love the combination of this bold graphic alpha with a handrawn feel to it because of the scribbly shadow. I stamped my title onto watercolour paper with black embossing powder, then coloured them with Color Theory Inks to match Bethany's shirt in the photo. Oh... and then I ended up adding Stickles over the top for some glitter. Couldn't help it!

But new layouts aside, it was the new release stamps Studio Calico specifically asked me to play with, and I couldn't be happier to agree to that! They asked me for 3 cards... I 'accidentally' made 6!
(Yes, I know I'm only sharing 5 here, but the last card I'm not overly happy with so I'm not sharing it! LOL!)

I first started with the Thanksgiving stamp set with it's grassy frame type of stamp, and a million options for sentiments to pop inside. I had this idea for how I wanted the finished card to look, but I wasn't sure if it would work, so I did a mock-up version first with a blue and yellow background. It seemed like it would turn out ok so I did my 'good' version in the yellow-pink-red-blue spectrum. I finished it off with some puffy asterix from the Scrapbook Kit.
But I kept looking back at my mock up version and couldn't bear to throw it away. It's not perfectly stamped but I figured I would finish the card anyway, and try to cover up the defects with buttons! LOL!
And now I have a set!

I fell in love with the Fall Plants set. I think it's my favourite! It has a great mixture of flowers and vegetables (of all things!) and my 'failed' card featured the carrots. But then I had an idea to just take one of the flowers - the layered pansy - and stamp a whole field of them in rainbow colours. I wanted it to represent reproduction and growth and fertility to match the sentiment from the same set. I'm always in need of new baby cards so this is perfect.

Another delicate and elegant stamp set from this release is the Floral Thank You set. It's got a mixture of detailed floral images and bold graphic sentiments. They work together really well, so on this card I decided just to let them shine by themselves. This is about as CAS as I can get!

And lastly I took the Everyday Magic stamp set and whipped up this final card. There are lots of great images and funky sentiments in this set, but I stuck with just a couple. I was inspired by the 'heart of gold' phrase and had this idea to stamp a grid design of the hearts in gold. Pretty obvious right?! To kick it up a notch I also took the same heart stamp, inked it up with Color Theory inks, spritz it with water and then slammed it down on the paper to create the splatters behind each one. Messy but fun!

The Studio Calico September kits are called Starlight and they're now available.
You can find all the stamp sets I've worked with as add-ons in the shop here. Which one is your favourite?


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