Imagine. Dream. Fly.

Right now the evening sky is the pink-blue-gold of my card, featured below, and I am happy to say that the sun is setting on an incredibly productive day spent creating.  With the exception of a few fine hours spent with the PNW Crafting crew a couple weeks ago, such a day I have not seen in my own studio since June.  This summer has been replete with work and visitors, both of which I have been happy for, but I have yearned for a whole day free to play with paper and ink!

For the current card, an overdue congrats greeting for a student, I was inspired by my new, wonderful collection of Carta Bella Wildflower papers and Taheerah’s challenge image:

 

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I love these colors–the gold and mint combination is divine!  I pulled in a similar design as the wallpaper for my background, and featured the pink of the lampshade a bit more prominently, as I wanted to work with a bird theme and the Wildflower feather paper was perfect.

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I love all the textures in this card–from the feather and glitter papers to the paper flowers and netting.  The Wildflower papers are so luxuriously thick and textured, to say nothing of the graphics!  I have featured the feather and the gold arrow papers from the collection, as well as PTI’s heavy vellum and MFT’s Primitive Ivory for the card body.  You may recognize Mama Elephant’s Femme Frame dies; Ellen Hutson has a great set that includes these, as well as the Dainty bow, Embellished Tag, and Bold banner.

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The inside and back are finished with some of my favorite washi tape.

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My little cluster of goodies atop the Impression Obsession birdcage features a variety of products. The blue flower and gold dots are from Prima, along with the resin bird, but I die cut and rolled the little tissue paper flowers from Impression Obsession’s mini spiral flower dies.  The Unity Stamp Co. sentiment has been stamped in Brilliance Rocket gold ink onto a lightly swiss-dotted paper die cut from MFT’s washi dies.  I used Penny Black dies for the feather, cut from PTI heavy vellum, and deconstructed Dancing Leaves in MFT’s Fuse green, which is a new favorite color of mine!

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Thanks so much for stopping by!  I hope I sparked your imagination.

Make sure to check out Taheerah’s Cure for the Monday Blues challenge; a new one posts every Monday!

Check back tomorrow for a CASE Study card to celebrate their 4-year anniversary party!

 

 

Paris in the Springtime

It was 1995 when I experienced Paris in the springtime with my mom, and this time of year always brings back memories of our trip.

Ideas for this card have been kicking around in my brain for some weeks now, and the challenge over at Fusion gave me the impetus for putting them into action!  Here’s their inspiration photo:

 

And here is my take, a blend of the photo’s colors and sketch, with some latitude in terms of the sketch!

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I could not wait to get those new Paper Smooches flower dies cut and wound around the My Favorite Things Die-namics Eiffel Tower!  Did you notice I hung the yellow flower around the top of the tower, as in the photo?

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We stayed in Montparnasse at the Victoria Palace Hotel, and so I focused on that area of the map in my slide frame.  It was a delightful neighborhood, and one of my most delicious memories is winding through the narrow streets and discovering Poilene, a bakery a few blocks away.

Imagine my surprise when more than a decade later I am grocery shopping and see their signature white and green bags in my Seattle market!  They had begun flying in their bread every Tuesday from Paris!  I was immediately transported back and bought a demi-miche for myself and my mom!

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It never rained but on the day we arrived; other than that from Paris to the Loire Valley it was warm, sunny and glorious, so no umbrellas were needed. But I included the Memory Box one here a la Umbrellas of Cherbourg!

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Here is the inside:

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Another post, and entry to Fusion, will be following on the heels of this one, so do pay me a visit, and then head over to Fusion for some creative catalysts!

A bientot!

Thanksgiving Table Setting Pieces

Hello everyone!  It’s black Friday here, but you’ll find me nowhere near a store today!  I am happily home, updating my website, soon to be crafting and later teaching, as I digest the lovely dinner we had at Seattle’s Sorrento Hotel last night!  They had WWI and Roaring 20’s era menus displayed along the walls, and I captured the image of one of them below.

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I haven’t been online much in the past week as I worked furiously to complete the following sewing and paper craft projects to send to my family in New York for their Thanksgiving table.

First up, the coasters with a guest appearance by my new Douglas squirrel ornament!  Fabric backdrop is organic Birch Fabrics purchased at Purl Soho when we were in NYC in May.  Pattern is from one of my favorite books, Last Minute Patchwork and Quilted Gifts.  The acorn fabric was purchased at West Seattle Fabric Co.

Coasters
Coasters
Coasters & Douglas Squirrel!
Coasters & Douglas Squirrel!
Quilted Coasters--2013
Quilted Coasters–2013

Next up, my napkins!  The fabric is from Timeless Treasures, also purchased at West Seattle Fabric Co.

Napkin--Timeless Treasures Fabric
Napkin–Timeless Treasures Fabric

Check out my mitered corners!

Mitered Corners!
Mitered Corners!

No Big Dill’s gorgeous website provided the tutorial for getting these just right.  Check out Katy’s website and you won’t be sorry!  It’s a feast for the eyes.

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Here are all the napkins rolled up and presented in their lovely wrapping!  For these tags, I used My Favorite Things wine tag die, Impression Obsession leaf dies, “Thanks” die from Paper Smootches, Gina K. Cocoa paper, and corrugated card stock for the base.  Some burlap ribbon and sequins provide finishing touches.

I also used this wonderful negative die cut for my World Cardmaking Day card, here.

You can see in this photo the 3-D effect I created on the tags with sentiment and leaf.

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Next up, are the chocolate gift wrappers!

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For these, I used Papertrey Ink’s Lunchbox notes die, Boutique Borders die, and coordinating stamp.  The sentiment is from WPlus9 Fresh Cut Florals set.

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All of the chocolate gift wraps have different paper inside—for this one above, I used the birch embossed paper from Ellen Hutson and colored it with Distress Inks “Walnut” to match the stamp.

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My mom received the special one, originally featured here, since it was just her birthday!  I packaged up some leaf confetti as well to spread on the table!

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Finally, I gave them some felted acorns (which I did not make), packaged in a kraft pillow box that I embellished with the Neat & Tangled Simple Christmas stamp set.  I was a bit heavy-handed with the pine cone and bough!  It is a bit hard to see, but the white winter berries are embellished with some glittery embossing powder.

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My little leaf-jumping squirrel sketch (originally posted here) found a home on this card that accompanied the gift.  The bottom is adorned with an EK punch.

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I am so thankful you stopped by to view my creations!  Your comments and questions are much appreciated!

I hope your Thanksgiving, if you are in the States, was fulfilling and that you are carving some time (and maybe some left-over turkey!) to create today!

Skeleton Dance

CAS-ology Black Challenge

Happy Dios de los Muertos!

Can you believe Halloween is now a ghost floating behind us and thoughts (as well as advertisements and stores!) are turning toward the spirit of another season? Yesterday, I tried to make up for some lost time and embrace my favorite turn of the year, frosting Halloween cookies, carving a pumpkin, and finalizing a few paper creations for the bottleshop where my partner works (photos forthcoming!). Sadly, I entertained only a few trick-or-treaters as my pumpkin glowed into the night and I watched Halloween II while eating way too many mini snickers!

Today, as I look at all my Halloween stamps and papers that didn’t find their way onto a card this year, ideas continue to swirl like leaves, and I realize I am not quite ready for the transition from pumpkin patches and spiced cider to tree lots and mulled wine!

But Samhain is here and we are turning toward the darker days, so what is more perfect than an all black card to celebrate a skeleton dance and remember all the souls that have passed into another realm?

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When I first saw these Tim Holtz embossing folders, I knew I had to have them!

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For my card, I embossed some black-brown paper from Impress Stamps, but it just seemed so bland and I was having a hard time figuring out how to make it pop. I didn’t want to add layers, but rather keep the focus on the wonderful scene itself.

Then I recalled a technique I tried last month with some other embossed paper, and realized that was just what this card needed.

To achieve this glossy effect, I rubbed VersaMark Dazzle Ink Champagne pad all over the card, specifically the embossed portion.  After that, I covered with clear embossing powder and set with a heat gun.  I love the glossy, plastic feeling of the card when it is set.

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The sentiment inside and bats on the back are from Waltizingmouse Stamps “Halloween Party” set.  This is one set that I adore, but did not put to use as much as I would have liked!  I finished the card off with two strips of black glitter ribbon.

Clean and simple with a little sparkle and shine!

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For this final shot, I added my little tombstone and Bunnicula to the scene!  I realized that the Papertrey Ink holiday tag inset die looked like a tombstone, and so using my Victorine Originals skeleton, letters from MFT, Savvy grass die and Lawn Fawn bunny, I set up this prototype and hope to make more to incorporate into cards and tags for next year!  What do you think?

Well, the news is predicting our first wintery storm of the season with high winds, rain and cooling temperatures, and snow in the Cascades.  We shall see if their predictions are accurate!  Here is a poem to bid adieu to the season of the witch and celebrate black!

What is Black?

Black is the night
When there isn’t a star
And you can’t tell by looking
Where you are.
Black is a pail of paving tar.
Black is jet
And things you’d like to forget.
Black is a smokestack
Black is a cat,
A leopard, a raven,
A high silk hat.
The sound of black is
“Boom! Boom! Boom!”
Echoing in
An empty room.
Black is kind-
It covers up
The run-down street,
The broken cup.
Black is charcoal
and patio grill,
The soot spots on the window sill.
Black is a feeling
Hard to explain
Like suffering but
Without the pain.
Black is licorice
And patent leather shoes
Black is the print
In the news.
Black is beauty
In its deepest form,
The darkest cloud
In a thunderstorm.
Think of what starlight
And lamplight would lack
Diamonds and fireflies
If they couldn’t lean against
Black…
     ~ Mary O’Neill
Dance your bones over to CAS-ology for some great takes on this week’s challenge!
Thanks for stopping by Pinned & Penned!

Autumn Wreath

Autumnal Greetings

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This little lunchbox note die from Papertrey Ink has so many possibilities!  The current incarnation was my entry for the Make-It Monday challenge, but I missed the deadline!  Boo!

Happy to share these anyway!  I love my leaf dies from Impression Obsession; they are a great size with wonderful detail.  You can see my previous sketch with them here.

I also used the Paper Trey Ink die “Boutique Borders” and coordinating “Thinking of You” stamp set for sentiment and embellishment.

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The patterned paper is from a great little set of DIY Shop Crate Paper.  Cocoa paper is heavy weight from Gina K.

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The sentiment here is from Paper Smootches.

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This is another option for the card, an invitation!  Sentiment is from Paper Smootches.

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I also envisioned this as a thank you for a hostess, attached to a gift or bottle of wine.  The sentiment is from My Favorite Things.

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Finally, for the last option, I attached a little tag from Avery Elle and stamped it with a sentiment from Waltzingmouse “Halloween Party” set!

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It is a gorgeous sunny day here in Seattle, but those leaves are whipping around and sadly are moving past their peak!
Time perhaps to kick around in some crispy, fragrant sidewalk swirls, or gather a handful for a real wreath?

Happy crafting and crunching!