Wednesday, June 6, 2018

Quick & Easy Mermaid Decor

Hi, Crafty Peeps!!

Yup, the summer heat is here and it's time to hit the water! You could say I take to it like a fish in water... but I'd say, you're WRONG!! I'm not a fish in water... I'm a MERMAID!

And if you're a mermaid or LOVE everything mermaid, you'll love this quick and easy "Mer"-decor! Yes, Mer-decor is a thing!! Which is why it's a good thing that I am here today with Team Xyron and this week's amazing partner, my good friends from DCWV!! Because I'll be playing with their new Ocean Wonder Stack and it's gonna help take my home decor from awesome to "MERMAZING"!!

Supplies Used
Ocean Wonder (DCWV/ American Crafts)
Glitzy (DCWV/ American Crafts)
Stacked Love with Mermaid SVG File (Kolette Hall Studio)
Creative Station w/ 9" Permanent Cartridge (Xyron)
White Cardstock
Craft Foam
Picture Frame

When I saw this paper I immediately thought of Mermaids! And I found the super cool SVG file by Kolette Hall that was absolutely perfect!

Image 1

I downloaded it onto my computer and loaded it into my ecal software.

When loaded into my software, the default size was too big for what I had in mind. So I resized it.

I simply adjust the sizing in the panel to the right of the screen. I used the drop-down arrow in the width section (which is simply labeled with a "w") and clicked it from it's 8.563" default sizing till it got to, what I thought was just right, at 7.060".

These pieces are also attached together (by default) and I want to cut multiples to stack them for a thicker three-dimensional look so I right-clicked, then clicked on "Ungroup" to separate them.

I knew I was going to be working with lots of colors and patterns and didn't want them to get lost or distracting. So, I broke it up by adding a .015" border around my "LOVE" word.

Simply, right click on the word, go to "Appearance", then "Add Shadow Layer...".

Then, set the sizing box to 0.15".

You can set what color you want your border to be, and in this case, I wanted it white. But that color blends into my virtual cutting mat. So I simply adjusted the outline to black. Go to the paint palette icon on the right of the screen, Go to "Stroke" box, then click in the color box and choose black.

Now, I can see that awesome border around my words!

I did those same steps to fill in color to my shapes too. but in those cases, I entered my selections in the "fill" box.

Both of these steps are optional, they just help me see what I'm doing better and help me get a better visual of what I am creating.

I separated my shadow onto another cutting mat. Remember, I wanted to create a stacked/ thick chipboard type of look. I only need to stack the shadow to achieve that look. So I duplicated 3 more and spread them over an entire mat.

Cutting multiple images is easier when you group like colors together and cut them all at once.

For the shadow, I cut in plain white cardstock. But for the main LOVE stacked word, I used this AMAZING or should I say MERMAZING fish scaled paper with a beautiful gradient and gold foil outlines and for my mermaid silhouette, I used this gorgeous pink glitter paper (also from DCWV).

I ran all my die cut pieces through the Xyron Creative Station, then layered all the LOVE stacks together.

I wanted the mermaid to have dimension but it seemed pointless to cover a bunch of glitter paper. So instead, I ran a piece of craft foam through the creative station and made my own foam adhesive to prop up my mermaid.

I attached the foam to the back of her head and torso only since her fins will be attached to the LOVE stack.

For my background, I used this deep purple paper with dotted waves. I think it looks a lot like deep sea currents. But it could just be me... HA!

I cut it down to fit inside my 7"x 10" frame... I know... what an awkward size! But use whatever size frame you can find and adjust accordingly.

 I took my stacked LOVE... look how nice and thick this piece is... and attached it to the center of my background paper, then inserted it into my frame and closed it up.

And there ya have it, EASY-PEASY!!

These papers are absolutely GORGEOUS and when the light hits it... Oh my gosh... STUNNING!!

This is clean and simple!
 makes for perfect decor or gift for all those mermaid lovers out there!

Hope you enjoyed this tutorial!
Thanks for stopping by!!

Until next time...

Monday, June 4, 2018

Flamingos in the Tropics

Hey, Crafty Friends!! 
Boy, is it HOT! I don't know where Spring went but it's long gone and hiding!
My kids are already out for summer break and they are enjoying all the sunshine. swimming, running, lots of screaming laughter... that's what we're down for in these next couple of months. All of which reminds me of my of my childhood days growing up in Hawaii. Tropical weather and visits to the zoo where at the foot of the entrance gates flamingoes await visitors. Yup, those were the days. They were a bit stinky but those flamingos sure were pretty! Lots of these majestic birds standing on one leg or rubbing beaks, occasionally spreading their wings for a stretch. How I want to share memories like those with my children.

So, when Blank Page Muse released my good friend Pam Bray's newest stamp set, it brought back all kinds of feels! I immediately fell in love with these stamps!! And when Kim (owner of Blank Page Muse) and  Pam asked if I would like to create with these stamps, I literally squealed!! I've always loved Pam's designs and of course, I had to jump at the opportunity! What's even better is that all of these stamps are made of deeply etched red rubber! So I know the impression is gonna be amazingly crisp and clear! And boy, was I right! It makes a HUGE difference, especially with detailed stamps such as these!

And in the spirit of my childhood memories, I created this #10 sized Tropical Flamingo Card.

Supplies Used 
Pam Bray Flamingo Row (Blank Page Muse)
Tim Holtz Tropical Dies (Sizzix)
Tim Holtz Stitched Ovals (Sizzix)
Tim Holtz Labels (Sizzix)
Mixed Media Paper (Strathmore)
Sun Drenched (Paper House)
Chalkboard Stack (DCWV)
Cardstock- Light Green, Orange
VersaFine (Tsukineko/ Imagine Crafts)
Tim Holtz Distress Markers- Worn Lipstick, Picked Raspberry, Hickory Smoke (Ranger)
Clean Color Real Brush Marker- No. 052 Bright Yellow, No. 023 Scarlet Rd (Zig/ Kuretake)
Eileen Hull Blends- Leaf, Frog, Melon (Clearsnap)
MISTI Stamping Tool (My Sweet Petunia)
Hemp Twine
Mixed Media Glue
Foam Adhesive
Aqua Brush (Pentel)

I started by stamping my faves from the set... FLAMINGOS!! I stamped them onto mixed media paper using Versafine Onyx Black ink.  Then colored in m images using my Tim Holtz Distress Markers. First coloring most of the bird with Worn Lipstick. I blended out the color using a water brush then went back in to add a second layer using Picked Raspberry to add more depth. Then colored the beaks with Hickory Smoke.

Once I was satisfied with my coloring and the images were completely dried, I cut out both flamingos by hand with scissors.

I die cut monstera leaves out of light green cardstock using Tim Holtz's Tropical Dies by Sizzix. I cut 3 leaves altogether.

Then shaded around the edges using Eileen Hull's Blends inks in Leaf, then in Frog.

After the ink was completely dried, I used a ball stylus to add dimension and shape the leaves.

Using the leftover scraps from my flamingoes, I stamped these little stemmed flowers using more Versafine ink. I didn't need the stems so stamping the entire stamp perfectly wasn't necessary. As long as all the flowers were intact I was good to go!

I colored these dainty flowers using, my Zigs in Bright Yellow, blended out toward the center with a water brush, then added Scarlet Red in the centers and blended outward with the water brush.

Once the flowers were all dried, I fussy cut them out, then creased each petal down the center to give them more dimension.

For the hibiscuses... again used dies from the Tropical set, and die cut from orange cardstock. I shaded along the edges using the Melon Blends ink.

I separated each petal from the flower and creased and folded them, then re-attached them to the cut-out centers with glue.

Disassembling them then re-assembling them gave them a whole lot more dimension.

For the card base, I cut patterned paper from PaperHouse's Sundrenched collection
to measure 3-3/4" x 9".

I used my Xyron Mega Runner to mount it onto a 4-1/8" x 9- 1/4" card base made from 110 lb white cardstock.

I  wanted a center focal point that wouldn't block out all that gorgeous ocean scenery. So, I die cut an oval out of vellum using Tim Holtz's Stitched Ovals. I ran the oval through my Xyron Crative Station with a 5" permanent refill cartritdge. Then adhered it to the card front.

I anchored the oval with a palm tree cut from black chalkboard paper die using the palm tree die from the same Tropical die set.

I attached foam adhesive sheets to the back of the flamingos and attached them to the oval then arranged the flowers and leaves and tucked in loops made from hemp twine.

I thought the "I'll stand by you... Today, Tomorrow, Always" sentiment went perfectly with this pretty pink couple. So I stamped it onto more mixed media paper and die cut it out using a label from the Tim Holtz Labels die set and shaded the edges with Eileen Hull's Sunshine blends ink.

And at the very last minute, I decided to re-mount the card front with a black mat mad with more of that deep black chalkboard paper. It gives a nice balance of black throughout the card, don't you think?!

And here is my finished card...


I hope you enjoyed this card tutorial and definitely take a peek on over to Blank Page Muse!! Pam Bray has so many more amazing stamps sets you need to check out!!

Thanks for stopping by!!

Until next time...