Challenges and Experiments

I was so excited to see the Tic Tac Toe Challenge return. I love the format of this challenge. They give you a board with nine squares filled with characteristics your creation must contain but you can do any row, column or diagonal.

The Inspiration

This weeks board:

I chose the column down the middle: Die cut, Spring, and Blue. I’ve been organizing my craft room (another challenge of a whole different kind!) and I knew I had some blue flowers I wanted to use. I also had a bicycle stamp from a long-ago Paper Pumpkin. It really is amazing what we have in our craft rooms.

The Experiment

Anyhow, I got this idea from a card made by Amy Koenders. She had a single layer with the bike stamped on top of a stamped tree. And I thought, what if I used a die-cut tree. And then what if I made it an easel card. But how would I get to the tree to take the image so that it was intact if the tree was on top? What if I embedded the tree but it popped up on its own when the card was folded. Yeah! This is gonna be cool.

And it was—after three tries.

The Card

Here is the card lying flat more or less. The base is Tempting Turquoise, a retired color that matched my stash flowers perfectly. The tree is cut from Kraft paper which has a nice woody quality. The Whisper White base was scored first then die cut. I did this to make sure the hole for the branches was above the score line and the trunk of the tree was below.

Next, I fit the Kraft tree into the Whisper White base and stamped my bicycle in Tuxedo Black Memento ink. After the ink was dry, I cut the white base on the score and then placed the two halves on the blue card base. I focused on getting the two halves as close as possible but also aligned on the edges to give the illusion of one folding piece. I cut it because leaving it as one piece didn’t work well with folding it back and forth.

The sentiment is from an old Paper Pumpkin as well, Giftable Greetings. I stamped it in Crumb Cake and added a bit of linen twine at the end. Finally, I glued the blue flowers to the tree and added a pearl to each one.

But we aren’t done. The easel needs something to hold it in place. I used a sentiment that says “Today and Always” from the Lasting Lily stamp set (old Saleabration I think). It’s popped up on Dimensionals and set far up on the interior so that the tree stands upright when the card is folded.

I’m totally biased, but I think this is a really cool card. It’s advanced and fussy, but I fell in love with the results. Thanks to the Tic Tac Toe coordinators for kicking off this project with their fun challenge.

What have you got in your craft stash that’s inspiring your creativity this weekend?

Tic Tac Toe Challenge Team Pick

Quick update: This card was selected as a Team Pick! I’m so honored.

I’ll Bee Yours Paper Pumpkin Alternates

The color palette of the January Paper Pumpkin kit is gorgeous and perfect for Spring. The stamp set has a variety of sentiments and a great background stamp. Even if you don’t send Valentine’s Day cards or even Gal-entines cards, this kit is filled with treasures for making alternatives. I’ll show you a few that I came up with.

The Kit

First, check out the 3″x3″ cards and the gift sacks that the kit makes. The two cards are stamped with Mint Macaron ink from the kit and the background stamp. The pre-punched pieces are in a combination of Highland Heather, Rococo Rose, and Crushed Curry. It was easy to put these together in minutes and the kit would be great for kids to make cards for exchanges. The sacks were equally fast and the flower embellishments already have adhesive. It just doesn’t get simpler.

Small Thank You

The first alternative makes use of the preprinted sack as an envelope for a small thank you card. I cut a piece of Whisper White cardstock 3-1/2″x6″ scored at 3″. Then I added a piece of leftover DSP that was primarily Mint Macaron. I added a Champagne foil heart using one of the punches from the Heart Punch pack in the current mini-catalog. I love the bit of detail and sparkle. The sentiment is in the kit. Simple and pretty and it fits in the sack.

Joy Fold

My last post went into detail on how to make a joy fold card. Using one of the 3×3 cards in the kit as the second piece of the card, made the fold even easier. Start with a piece of 4-1/4″x 8-1/2″ Whisper White scored at 3″ on the long side. I added a piece of Rococo Rose DSP in 4″x 5-1/4″ then layered on the small card. The 3″ flap is decorated with the front half of one of the preprinted sacks cut down to 2-3/4″ x 4″. The sentiment from the kit is stamped in Rococo Rose ink. Then I just added a few of the pre-punched hearts and sequins to the top fo the card and it’s done.

Gift Card Holder

The last card uses a standard base of Whisper White. On top of the is another layer of Whisper White stamped with the background stamp using the Mint Macaron ink in the kit. Trim this layer to 4″x5-1/4″ and wrap it in the baker’s twine in the kit before using Dimensionals to adhere it to the card front.

Next, I stamped the outline heart on the pre-punched piece with Highland Heather ink. The tag is also stamped in the same color, but I used a sentiment from the Sentimental Rose kit from last April. It fit perfectly on the tag in the kit. The heart is up on Dimensionals, so it’s easy to tuck the tag underneath.

The cool part of this card is the interior. I added one of the sacks on the inside panel for holding a gift card. The For You stamp is in the kit and it bumps the edges of the outline of the little tag, but that’s fine. It looks great. Easy card and gift in one envelope.

I hope you’re subscribed to Paper Pumpkin. I continue to be impressed with the quality and variety of the contents of these kits. If you aren’t subscribed, you can click the link on the right-hand side of this page and sign up in just a few minutes.

Happy crafting!

Joy with Reverse Images

I held a technique class recently and we made two cards using the Joy fold and the Free as a Bird stamp set. In addition to the measurements and instructions that I’ll attach to this post, I have some tips for you on using your Silicone Craft Mat to create reverse images. Let’s start with the single reversed image card.

Flipped and Folded

For this card, I used Mint Macaron, Blushing Bride and Whisper White cardstock along with the Garden Lane DSP. The birds on the branch are designed with the branch end on the left. I wanted it on the right so that when you open the card, it’s on the anchored side. The Blushing Bride flap opens opposite to a typical card. To reverse the image, I stamped it on my Silicone Craft Mat using Early Espresso. You want to use a pretty juicy ink pad for this because technically you’re stamping the image twice.

Then I flipped the mat over and gently placed it on my Whisper White cardstock. Some tutorials tell you to rub the image. I found that this left smears and I wasn’t happy with the results. So, I recommend a tapping action. Tap all along the image making sure the ink transfers completely. I finished the front of the card by coloring in the blossoms and leaves with Stampin’ Write markers and added some leftover Paper Pumpkin enamel hearts.

Here is the inside of the card that shows how it opens.

Kissing Images

For the next card, we used the same exact fold but with Crushed Curry and Balmy Blue card stock and some Perennial Essence DSP. The birds are stamped in Memento Tuxedo Black Ink and colored in with Stampin’ Blends.

Some tips for this reverse image. Stamp the reversed bird first. If it doesn’t come out right you can turn the paper over, nothing lost. Also, it’s easier to line up the stamp when directly stamping so you can get the birds placed exactly as you want them. Finally, consider using a second-generation stamp (stamp off once on scrap paper) so that the intensity of the black ink on both birds is similar. I finished the card with some washi tape instead of ribbon, but use what you have in your stash.

You can also use this reverse technique to make the images appear like a reflection by flipping the images on the horizontal axis, instead of the vertical, like is shown here.

Joy Fold Measurements and Card Assembly Instructions

Let me know if you try this fold or technique. I would love to hear how it worked for you.