Thursday, December 29, 2011

Its time to celebrate . . .

I love Christmas but for me, December 31 is a special time for remembering the past and celebrating the hopes and expectations of the New Year.  And there's a card for it, too.   This is one of my favorite multi-purpose designs.  I've used it as an invitation to a New Year's Eve party, a panel card with the date, time and place printed on the back.  And, by changing the stamped image on the front, as a New Year's greeting for someone I had neglected to send a Christmas card to.  
Here's what to do:  paste the Fireworks stencil (LJ886) with translucent embossing paste.  Remove the stencil and let the paste set for a few minutes.  Then sprinkle ultra fine silver and gold glitter randomly over the slightly tacky paste and set aside to dry.  When the paste has dried, cut to size, adhere to mat and add ribbon.  Stamp sentiment or image, mat and adhere to card front.  If you're using this as an invitation, print information on card stock.  Cut it slightly larger than your mat and adhere to the back of the stenciled design.

This year has been a wonderful ride with the Dream Team and there are new and exciting things coming next week when our three new members, Cyndi Bundy, Jessie Hurley,  and Cherylynn Moser begin posting.   So get the year off to a good start and mark your calendars for Dream Scheme Thursdays.  We look forward to seeing you!    In the meantime, join the rest of us in celebrating the New Year by checking out the Dream Team blogs (listed on the right) and leaving us a note.

Happy New Year,
Liz

Thursday, December 22, 2011

HAPPY HOLIDAYS, EVERYONE

Our color challenge this week was to use burgundy and gold and I immediately new that the Christmas Script stencil (LL3009) would be perfect for my card.  And it's a snap to put together. 

Paste emboss the stencil with metallic gold paste.  When dry, cut to size, and mat on ivory Stardream paper.  Cut larger mat and add ribbon and tie the bow before adhering to card base.  Adhere Christmas Script matted piece and you're done.  Note:  I used a wired gold ribbon, which is not post-office friendly.  If you're going to mail your card, remove the wires before tying the bow and it will flatten nicely when you put it in the envelope.

With Christmas just days away, I know there's more on the "To Do" list than there are hours in the day, but be sure to check out the Dreamweaver blog, DREAM it UP!   Lynell is announcing the new Dream Team members and you'll want to be sure to check out their blogs and add them to your blog reader so you can follow along each week as we continue our Thursday posts.   And there's more to see from the rest of the Dream Team – check out their blogs by clicking on the links on the right.

Wishing you all the best this holiday season, and my thanks for following our blogs (and hopefully playing along with the challenges) this past year.   If you have yet to join a challenge, why not make it a New Year's resolution?   You'll find once you start, you're hooked!

All the best this holiday season to you and your family.
Happy crafting,
Liz

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Dream Scheme Sketch Challenge

Today's sketch is brought to you by Dream Teamer Pam, with the added instruction to make it a "vintage Christmas."   Here's the sketch
And my card


There are very few products you'll need to pull this card together.  Begin by dry embossing the poinsettia stencil (LG700) on to red Core'dinations paper using a personal die cut machine, such as a BIGkick, BIGshot, Cuttlebug or Vagabond.  You'll need to use the "sandwich" that works best in your machine, but we find that putting the stencil directly on the base plate, then layering paper, silicone embossing mat and two new cutting plates (used only for embossing) is the best way to keep your stencil from bending.  Spritz the back of your card stock with rubbing alcohol or water to loosen the fibers and get a better impression.  The advantage to using rubbing alcohol is that it dries a little faster than water, though either will give the intended result.  Rub the front of the paper with a sanding block to give the image more definition.  You can see a lot more shading in the original, which didn't come through as well in the photo.  Trim the image and cut into three equal sections.  Adhere to green card stock.  Adhere patterned paper to solid red card stock and tie a bow.  Stamp sentiment.  Adhere poinsettia panel to patterned paper and adhere to card base.

That's all there is to it.  Take a break and visit the other Dream Team blogs for more ideas and inspiration and then play along with us in this week's sketch challenge.  You can link your project on the Dreamweaver blog, DREAM it UP! using Mr. Linky.  We'd love to see what you've been working on.

It's ten days and counting and not nearly enough time to get everything done.  So remember . . . there will be more holidays next year and what doesn't get finished in the next few days, will put you ahead of the game when December 2012 rolls around!

Happy crafting and Happy Holidays,
 Liz 

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Designer's Choice on Dream Scheme Thursday

Bright, shiny ornaments, twinkling lights, tinsel and GLITTER!   What else could be more 
Christmas-y?  Today is designer's choice and this is one of my favorite stencils (OK, each stencil I work with is my favorite of the moment).

 
This card was made using the Long Stocking stencil (LL499) and the double glitter technique.   Begin by adhering one side of the double-sided mounting tape (MPDS) to card stock.  Leave the protective covering on the top side until you are ready to position your stencil.   Rub the back side of the stencil with Handmade Hawaiian Coconut Soap (DHHS), making sure to cover the entire stencil.  This will keep the stencil from making a tight bond with the adhesive.  Carefully brush the soap "crumbs" from the stencil openings, making sure not to bend the stencil.  Remove the protective paper from the double sided mounting paper and position your stencil, soap side down. 

Now, here comes the fun part.  I used Glitter Ritz micro fine glitter in Grasshopper, Regal Red, Dark Gold and Cool Highlight.  To add glitter, I cut a straw in to 3" pieces and then cut one end at an angle to make a little scoop.  This is perfect for getting into small areas.   I began by applying red to the stripes and burnished it in with my finger.  After tapping off the excess and returning it to the jar, I added the gold, burnished it, then added the green and burnished it, as well.

Place the glittered image, stencil side down, on a flat surface and begin removing the card stock.  Be sure to move your fingers along the stencil as you peel back the card stock so that the stencil always remains flat and does not bend.

Lastly, apply the clear highlight glitter to the entire image and rub it in with your finger.  Trim to the desired size and you're read to finish your card.  I used several layers of mats and ribbon for mine, but the fun part is finding a patterned paper or embellishment in your stash you had forgotten about. 

As the countdown to Christmas continues, check out the Design Team's posts (see the sidebar on the right) for more ideas and inspiration. 

Happy crafting,
Liz

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Dream Scheme Color Challenge

I know it comes around this time every year, but I still can't believe it is December 1!  There are still some cards to be made, so for today's color challenge,  I've made a holiday card in non-traditional colors. I hope you like it.

Here's what you will need:
Stencils:  Let it Snow (LG717) and
Ice Skates (LL3016)
Metallic Silver Embossing Paste (DSP)
Silver Metal  (AC14)
Clear Glitter
Palette Knife (DPK)
Removable Tape  (RMT)




to make this card:
Position the Let it Snow stencil on card stock; tape each edge; and paste emboss with Metallic Silver Embossing paste.  Carefully remove the stencil and while the paste is still wet, sprinkle clear glitter over the surface and tap off the excess.  While the paste is drying, carefully wash the stencil and palette knife.

Dry emboss the ice skates stencil on the silver metal by hand or with a personal die cutting machine.  Carefully remove the stencil.  To help retain a sharp image, spread Mercart's Filling Paste or Dreamweaver's  matte white embossing paste over the back of the embossed metal.  Mat and layer each piece as desired and you're done.  Another card ready to mail.

Don't forget to visit the other Designer's blogs to see their take on the turquoise and silver colorway challenge.  And while you're at the Dreamweaver blog, DREAM it UP!, let us see your project by linking it using Mr. Linky.  We love to see all the great work that's out there. 

See you next week.

Happy Holiday Crafting,
Liz

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Happy Thanksgiving

If you're taking a break from family, dinner dishes and football, you couldn't have come to a better place.  The Dreamweaver team is sending Thanksgiving wishes to you, our faithful readers.   Sit back and take a look at what we've been working on.






Begin by paste embossing the Cornucopia stencil (LL529) with regular embossing paste (DEP).  When the paste has dried, reposition the clean stencil over the card and color to your heart's content.   Add your sentiment, embellishment and layer on your choice of patterned paper.  Adhere to card stock and you're done! 

This is a very short post, but I do want to remind you to be sure to visit the Dream Team blogs for more ideas and inspiration, and don't forget – there's still time to submit an application for the Dreamweaver Stencils Design Team Call.  You can get the details here.

Thank you, thank you, thank you for being such faithful followers.  We love hearing from you (and the attention), so don't be shy . . . leave us a note and let us know you've stopped by. 

Happy thanksgiving to all,
Liz

Thursday, November 17, 2011

It's Sketch Challenge Thursday!

Welcome to another fabulous Dreamweaver Stencil Sketch Challenge.  Today's sketch is brought to you by Wendy
Here are the products I used and the card I made . . .

 Tape the Candy Cane stencil (LL555) to cream card stock with removable tape.  Apply Glossy Red embossing paste with a palette knife.  Remove the tape; wash and dry stencil and palette knife.  While the paste is drying, cut patterned paper (Stampin' Up) to size and adhere strip of paper diagonally to the lower part of the card.   When the paste is dry, trim pasted image to size and mat on solid red card stock.  Adhere three dots to the upper right and you're done.  Couldn't be easier for this busy time of the year.

There is a lot more inspiration coming from my fellow team mates, so don't forget to check out their blogs, as well as the Dreamweaver Stencils blog, DREAM it UP!    Once you've hopped around to the other blogs, get your stencils out and play along with us.  Link your project on the DREAM it UP!   blog using Mr. Linky and let us see what you've made. 

And, don't forget the Design Team Call.   You can read all about it here.  But you'd better get busy if you want to make the December 1 deadline.  Come on!  You can do it.  

Happy crafting,
Liz

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Designer's Choice Project

Now that the Christmas cards are done (yeah, right!), it's time to think about teacher gifts, stocking stuffers, or something to have on hand for that last minute hostess gift.   This covered note pad can be easily broken down into steps, making final assembly as easy as pumpkin pie. 



In addition to the products on the left, you'll need plain card stock,  removable tape, a palette knife or paste spreader, inks to coordinate with your patterned paper and adhesive or sticky tape (you can see a bit of it poking out from under the jar of embossing paste).

Because of the drying time, I began by paste embossing the Hibiscus stencil (LG678) with regular white matte embossing paste (DEP) on Neenah Natural White card stock.  This is a good time to use Lynell's power pasting technique which she demonstrates on the Embossing Paste Techniques for Artful Cardmaking DVD.  When the past was dry, I repositioned the cleaned stencil and applied color.  I also inked the edges to make the image stand out.  Tearing the edges or using decorative scissors are also options for a different look.

Preparing the tablets:  the chipboard backing on the mini tablets was a little flimsy, so I cut a thinner piece of chipboard to size and attached it using sticky tape.  I also needed to cover the Staples logo, so I cut a scrap of patterned paper to fit the front, top and about an inch or so of the back of the tablet and adhered it using sticky tape.

Cut patterned paper to size and score.  Exact measurements will vary depending on the size of notepad you choose.  For this project, the mini tablets measured 3.5" x 5.25"  and cut the patterned paper 5.25" x 7.75".  The 7.75 inches is a bit longer than the actual notebook measurements to allow enough "overage" for scoring.  If there's a little hanging over the front and back edges, you can always trim it later.   

The paper I chose is a double-sided, light-weight card stock, which some might call layering weight.  It is not heavy enough to score without tearing, so I cut another piece to match and glued the two together.  And, I didn't like the pattern on the reverse, so gluing the two pieces together solved both problems!  If you find heavier weight patterned paper, you can eliminate pasting two lighter-weight pieces together.  Score patterned paper to fit tablet.   My tablet was 1/4" thick, so my score lines were at 3.75" and 4".  Remember, the front might hang over the tablet edge a bit, but that's OK.  You can trim it before attaching the ribbon.  If you're unsure of this step, make a sample using a manila file folder or other paper similar in weight to your patterned paper.

Cut ribbon strips to whatever size suits your project.

Assembly:   Attach one ribbon strip to the back of the tablet using sticky tape.  Attach the back cover, again using sticky tape, and fold the patterned paper to the front, creasing along the score lines.  Attach the second piece of ribbon to the front.  Position the image as desired, over the ribbon end.   Tie ribbon into a knot or bow. 

A cellophane bag is the perfect wrapping.  And there you have it.  Ready to be tucked into a Christmas stocking or placed in the gift box to be given away later.

Now, there's a lot more to see and plenty of inspiration from my fellow bloggers, so please stop by and see what they've been working on.   And leave us a note – we love hearing from you.   Be sure to check out the details for design team call on the DREAM it UP! blog.  There's till time to submit your application by the November 30 deadline.

Whew!  That, I think, is my longest post!

Happy Crafting,
Liz 

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Dream Scheme Color Challenge

There are so many options for a black and white color challenge – the possibilities are endless.  So let's get to it.  Here's what I did:


This is a combination of paste embossing and Zentangle-ing.   For the middle pear,  place the Pear stencil (LL563) with the Opto-Checkerboard stencil (LJ915) on top on white card stock and tape all edges.  Apply Glossy Black Embossing Paste (DGKP) and let dry.  For the remaining pears, I traced the Pear Stencil on to white card stock and began Zentangle-ing.  If you're not familiar with Zentangle, it was developed by Rick Roberts and Maria Thomas, as "an easy to learn method of creating beautiful images from repetitive patterns."  You can learn more about Zentangle here.  Cut out each pear and assemble.

Get more ideas and inspiration from my talented team members (blog links on the right) and be sure to leave us a note and let us know you dropped by.  It doesn't have to be long – a "just stopped by to say hi" is fine! We love hearing from you.

Now, if you've been following the Dream Team for the past year and a half, here's your chance to find out what it's like to be on a design team and how much fun we really have. Dreamweaver is having a design team call.  You can find the details, time line and contact information on the DREAM it UP! blog.

And don't forget to "like" us on the Dreamweaver Facebook page.
 
Hope you have a wonderful weekend and have set aside some time for crafting.

See you next week,
Liz

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Dream Scheme Sketch Challenge

I'm not a big fan of Halloween, as some of my friends are.  You won't find my house decorated with fake cobwebs (I have real ones), black cats with arched backs (again, why go for paper cut outs when you can have the real thing) or orange twinkle lights.  I do, however, have some very realistic looking black rats that make an appearance about this time each year.  Pumpkins and Indian corn are the extent of my Halloween decorating and, once the rats are gone, it's a smooth transition to Thanksgiving.  If I'm lucky, the pumpkins will become pie; if not, they'll get spray painted gold and silver and with some glittery leaves and bows become front porch Christmas decorations.

Halloween cards are another matter.  I love making and sending them almost as much as Christmas cards.  And when there's a sketch challenge involved, it even gets better.   Today's sketch comes from Dream Teamer Kim and my card, with artistic license, follows.





The Spider Web (LJ816) stencil is perfect for this background as it is easily cut into sections without diminishing the design.  I paste embossed the stencil with Glossy Black Embossing Paste (DGKP) on to orange card stock.  For the pumpkins, I used the three pumpkins from right end of the Long Pumpkins (LL514) stencil.  After taping the stencil to cream colored card stock, I added color with Tsukineko's Splendor inks.  To balance the image, I repositioned the stencil so the leaves on the top left of the stencil were at the top of the left pumpkin so it looks like the leaves are growing right off the stem.    I cut the image to size, inked the edges with a coordinating color and mounted it on black card stock.  I added ribbon (artistic license), put it all together and there you have it.  Done just in time to get it in the mail!

There's lots more to see, so be sure to check our there rest of the Dream Team bloggers to see what treats they have in store for you.  And be sure to play along with us and post your project on the DREAM it UP! blog.  It's easy using Mr. Linky.  See you next week.

Happy Halloween,
Liz                                                                           

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Designer's Choice on Dream Scheme Thursday

I'm still playing with the pink and black colorway from last week's challenge, but this week I brought Dreamweaver's Color Solution, their new artist grade alcohol inks, to the party.  They are so much fun to work with.  The deeply saturated colors can easily be thinned with the alcohol blending solution and they stay wet just a touch longer so you have more time to work the colors to get the effect you're looking for.  The 14 colors in the Autumn and Winter Palettes plus silver and gold should be arriving at your local scrapbook store soon.  If you don't see them, just ask!

I began by paste embossing the Houndstooth (LJ913) and Heart Swirls (LL567) stencils with glossy white embossing paste (DGWP).  When they were dry, I put a few drops of Color Solution Winter Red on the felt pad on the blending tool and a few drops of blending solution to lighten the color.  Starting with the blending tool off the edge of the paper (be sure to use your craft mat when working with alcohol inks to protect your work surface), I began rubbing over the embossed surface in a circular motion, adding more ink and blender solution as needed.  It is important to start off the edge of the card so there are no heavy blotches of color where you first put the blending tool on paper.  The houndstooth background wasn't as light as I wanted, so I put a bit of blending solution on a clean felt pad and removed some of the ink from the embossing paste, letting it act as a resist, and removing just enough to leave a mottled look. 

For the scroll heart, I added a few drops of gold to the ink on the felt pad to give a shimmery look and applied the color in the same manner as for the houndstooth background.   The ribbon is also colored with the Winter Red ink and blending tool.

The embellishment pin (already the perfect shade of pink), was a bit too long, so I cut the end with wire cutters to keep it from poking out the bottom of the heart. 

Now, on to the next project . . . I wonder how a Christmas card would look in pink and black?

Don't forget to visit the other Design Team blogs and be sure to leave us a note.   It doesn't have to be long, just let us know you've stopped by.  And be sure to visit the Dreamweaver blog, DREAM it UP! as there have been pink and black posts all week.

Happy crafting, and see you next week!
Liz

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Dream Scheme Color Challenge

Some days are better than others in the crafting world, and this week was heavenly.  First of all, it was a color challenge week and the colors were pink and black – two of my favorites.   And since I'm having a lot of fun with the background stencils right now, I couldn't pick just one, so you get the benefit of two cards.




For all cards, I used Glossy Black Embossing Paste  (DGKP).  For the card on the left, I pasted the Houndstooth (LJ913) and the large Hope (LL3018) stencils with glossy black embossing paste.  To give the Hope image a softer touch, I replaced the clean stencil over the pasted image, applied glue from the Palette Stamp & Stick Gluepad (GSP) with a large dauber, and lightly dusted Metallic F/X Pink Blaze and Pixie Blush over the pasted image with a stencil brush.  You can see some of the detail here, though the pinks are harder to see.
For the card on the right, I paste embossed the small Damask (LJ907) and Thanks (LS106) stencils with Glossy Black Embossing Paste.  When the paste was dry, I trimmed the images, added ribbon, matted them on card stock and adhered them to a card base.  Couldn't be easier.

Why not play along with us this week?  First, stop by the Dreamweaver blog, DREAM it UP! and then check out the great projects the other design team members have made for you.  Then, get out your stencils and whip up a card or two and post it on the Dreamweaver blog using the Mr. Linky tool.  We'd love to see what you're working on.

And don't forget to leave us a note.  We love reading your comments.

Happy crafting,
Liz

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Celebrating Canadian Thanksgiving on Dream Scheme Thursday

Warm wishes to all our Canadian friends who will be celebrating Thanksgiving on Monday.   And in honor of Canadian Thanksgiving, I've chosen this card for our Designer's Choice Dream Scheme Thursday.


To begin, paste emboss the long pumpkin stencil (LL514) with the white embossing paste (DEP).   When dry, reposition the clean stencil and apply color.  I gathered all the inks I had in shades of yellow, orange, green and brown and went to work (mostly Splendor inks by Tsukineko).  That was really a lot of fun.  I then tore the edges, added a sentiment and string embellishment, mounted it on patterned paper and then on card stock edged in orange with a Copic marker.

This card is a little bit country, but with a bit of Metallic F/X on the leaves and pumpkin tops and different patterned paper, it could have a very different look.  Which brings me to the tip of the day.  I know most of you already know this, but it took me a while to translate the tips and tricks I developed in my day job to my paper crafting life.  While you have your work station set up, paste a whole bunch of images at once (you'd be surprised how many places you can put them while they're drying!).  Then, when you have another chunk of time set aside, do your coloring and take some time to experiment.  Remember, there are no mistakes, only opportunities for making something different.  Then, you're on to assembling the parts, having cut, torn, or otherwise prepared the various papers and embellishments ahead of time.  And before you know it, you've got a card to send and one or more for the stash.

Products used (in addition to those listed above):
Card base:  Neenah Natural White
Patterned paper:  Autumn Spice, Stampin' Up
No brand named:  twine, sentiment


Happy crafting,
Liz

Thursday, September 29, 2011

It's Sketch Challenge Thursday!

We are days away from October and we should be having fall-like weather, but yesterday's temperatures made you want to get back into the pool.  The weather aside, we are heading into the fall/winter holidays and I heard someone mention last weekend that Christmas was 90 days away.  Eeeeck!   It's time to get busy with our holiday cards.

Today's sketch is by our Team Leader, Deborah March, and it's perfect for two of my favorite stencils (in truth, the stencil that I'm working with turns out to be that day's favorite!).

And here's my card


To begin, paste emboss the spider web (LJ816) and raven (LL3015) with glossy black embossing paste (DGKP), and set aside to dry.  When dry, cut the spider web into quarters and adhere to patterned paper.  Trim the raven, add coordinating mat, and adhere to the center of the card.  Add punched trim to the side and you're done.  One Halloween card done; many more to assemble.

I hope you've enjoyed today's sketch challenge.  Be sure to stop by the other design team blogs (listed in the side bar) to see what they've been working on and please leave a comment.  We love hearing from you.  Then, why not play along with us this week? We'd love to see what your take on the sketch.  Don't forget to post your creation on the DREAM it UP! blog using Mr. Linky.

See you next week,
Liz

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Designer's Choice on Dream Scheme Thursday

The calendar says tomorrow is the first day of Autumn, but you would never know it by the weather.  We've had warm summer days in the 80s-90s with no fog, so maybe now those last few tomatoes will finally ripen. 

For today's post, I wanted to do something in keeping with the seasons, the fall colors,  the (hopefully) cooler weather, and that led me to this beautiful Japanese Maple stencil (LJ906).  The warm orange-red colors of the leaves are a perfect reminder of the changing seasons.  I was amazed at how quickly this card came together.





I dry embossed the stencil and, with the stencil still in place, applied several different inks from a pale yellow to a darker reddish brown to get the desired shading.   There was a little too much white space for me, even after trimming the image to a smaller card size, so I punched a strip of patterned paper using EK Success Lattice Chain punch.  Then, after carefully cutting around the outside edge of the leaves, I adhered the smaller piece to the left side of the card base, layered the punched piece on top, and then positioned the larger piece on the right side so that it fit the card with just a small bit of patterned paper showing in the background.  Couldn't have been easier.  Give it a try . . . I think you'll like it.

Since this is a "free" week, but sure to check the other Dream Team blogs for more ideas and inspiration.  And don't forget to stop on over at the DREAM it UP! blog and leave us a note.  We love hearing from you.

Happy crafting,
Liz

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Dream Scheme Thursday Color Challenge

Dream Teamer Lee Kellogg provided the colors for this week's challenge: lime green and gray.  These are colors I'm not usually drawn to, but it's good for me to get out of my comfort zone and, as a result, I have lots of ideas to work on.  Here's my card:

I never throw away paper scraps and, over time, I've collected quite a stash of photo paper.   I've been playing with the scraps and find that they take well to a variety of inks. The background was made by dry-embossing photo paper with the Houndstooth stencil (LJ913), sanding the raised edges and applying Ranger's Distress Inks in Shabby Shutters and Pumice Stone with the applicator tool.  When applying the inks, remember to begin with a circular motion off the edge of the paper and work toward the middle. 

The Hot Air Balloon (LL3003) was dry-embossed on black metal  and, again, the raised edges were sanded to expose the gray base.   I used a Copic marker (New Leaf) to add color to the stencil and smoothed it out with the applicator tool.

The sentiment is from a set that most likely came from Michael's dollar bin; the brads are by Basic Gray.

There you have it.  Be sure to check out the other Dream Team members' blogs, listed on the right, to see what they've been working on.  And don't forget to let us see your work by linking to the Dreamweaver Stencils bog, DREAM it UP!

See you next week,
Liz

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Designer's Choice on Dream Scheme Thursday

WOW!   If you followed along with us last week for the Dreamweaver/Woodware UK blog hop, you saw some amazing projects and techniques from the very talented design teams.  So many ideas, so little time!

And in time, the holidays will be here before we know it.   Every year I make elaborate plans, endless lists and time-lines so that, in theory, by early December, the tree will be trimmed, gifts wrapped, cards mailed (my design team sisters know how well that went last year) and I will be able to enjoy the holidays and not do all-nighters trying to get things done.   Hope springs eternal, right?  Well this year is no different, though I do have a head start on the cards.  Here's what I'm talking about.

This newly released stencil (LX7003) is one of my favorites.  For this card, I used the copper metallic embossing paste on ivory Stardream paper.  Layer it with background papers of your choice and you're done.  You could use any of the metallic embossing pastes and change background papers to complement the paste or you could cover the image with gold leaf.

Bonus:  use Lynell's power pasting technique, demonstrated on the Embossing Paste Techniques for Artful Cardmaking DVD,  for even faster pasting.

Happy crafting,
Liz

Monday, September 5, 2011

And the winner is . . . .

#12 Daria who said "What fun! You did a fabulous job."  

Congratulations, Daria.  To collect your piece of Dreamweaver goodness, please send your mailing address to Lynell Harlow at lynell@dreamweaverstencils.com and she will send your prize.

Thanks to all who left comments.  This has been an amazing week of hopping back and forth across the pond and I hope you've enjoyed it as much as we have.  I've added the Woodware team's blogs to my Google reader, so you can be sure I'll be checking in frequently to see what other great ideas they're sharing.  And please come back on Thursday for more Dreamweaver Dream Team projects.

Happy crafting,
Liz



Monday, August 29, 2011

Blog Hopping with the Dreamweaver and Woodware Design Teams

The Dreamweaver design team is partying with the UK Woodware design team to bring you innovative ways to use our wonderful Dreamweaver Stencils and supplies all week long!  By the end of the week, you'll have seen stencils used in inspiration ways you just couldn't have imagined, and you'll see that, although our stencils are wonderful for paper crafting, they have SO MANY other uses too.  We'll have several posts a day for you, beginning today, Monday, August 29th, through Saturday, September 3rd.  At the end of our celebration, each designer will randomly select a winner from all blog comments to receive a free Dreamweaver stencil.  We look forward to you partying along with us.

Here's my entry for today.  Garden party, anyone?   For me, it's more like "gardening party," but who said you can't be stylish while pulling weeds?

 Stenciling on straw couldn't be easier.  I used the Black Eyed Susan stencil (LJ902) and blocked out the placement on the brim, using one or two flowers to fill in the blank spaces.  Then, following my template, I applied white embossing paste to every other section.   When that paste had dried, I paste embossed the remaining sections.   The ribbon band was a piece of cake.   Cut ribbon to fit and, starting at one end, paste emboss a single flower as many times as needed.  Since you are only pasting one flower at a time, it's not necessary to wait for the first one to dry before starting on the next flower.






When dry, replace the stencil and apply Splendor Inks by Tsukineko in your desired colors.  I attached the ribbon using fabric glue and added a bow to cover the two ends.  

You can find all the supplies I used and more here and right here.






If you've just joined the hop, here are the designers who have posted today:
Debbie at http://debfs.blogspot.com
Deborah at http://upcyclingmylife.blogspot.com
Kristi at http://www.kristiscreativecafe.blogspot.com
Liz at http://blackcatsstudios.blogspot.com    (you're here)

That's it for today.  Come back tomorrow and start at Lynell's blog DREAM it UP!  Lynell has also listed all of the hoppers on her blog, so it's a good place to go to if you get lost or miss a day (we know that won't happen, but just in case) and need to catch up.

I hope you've enjoyed the hopping with us and don't forget hop tomorrow through Saturday!

Happy Crafting,
Liz

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Designer's Choice on Dream Scheme Thursday

They've predicted a warming trend through the weekend, so of course my thoughts turn to cool drinks with lots and lots of ice.  In the paper crafting world, that would be snowflakes and ice skates, using  Dreamweaver's  new ice skates stencil in shiny, icy silver metal.   Take a look . . .




The background is the snowflake stencil (LJ819) paste embossed with translucent embossing paste.  After removing and washing the stencil, I sprinkled clear glitter over the paste while it was still wet.  After it was completely dry, I brushed off the excess glitter with a soft brush.

For the skates (LL3016), I dry embossed the metal first by running it through a personal die cutting machine and then, with the stencil still in place, went over the fine details with the small end of a stylus to give more definition.  Then, I turned the embossed metal over and applied regular embossing paste to the back to keep the details crisp and dent-free.  When dry, I cut it out and attached it to the snowflake panel. 

Please be sure to visit the other team blogs listed on the sidebar on the right for more ideas and inspiration, and don't forget to stop by the Dreamweaver blog, DREAM it UP!

AND, SAVING THE BEST 'TIL LAST . . . a special blog hop begins next Monday where you will be seeing some very different kinds of projects.  I won't say any more right now, just be sure to mark your calendar and check back next week to see what we've been working on.

Happy crafting,
Liz

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Thursday Dream Schemes Color Challenge

While working on this week's project, I realized I found the perfect Christmas stocking stuffer – bookmarks!    No more grocery receipts, old envelopes or Post-it Notes to mark the page.  My books will have style!    Before I begin, let me also add that this week is a colorway challenge, so a big thank you goes to team member Wendy for the great colors of red, cream and kraft.

After dry embossing the tea cup (vertical) stencil (LL493), and with the stencil still in place, I added color using Tsukineko's Splendor inks.  I distressed the edges with a file and added a bit more color to soften them.  I assembled the layers, added a ribbon and there you have it.   I couldn't believe how quickly this came together, and if you do the steps assembly-line fashion, you'll be done well before the holidays.

Now off you go to the other blogs to see more of the red, ivory, kraft colorway challenge.  Leave us a note, letting us know what you think.  We always like hearing from you.

Happy crafting,
Liz

Thursday, August 11, 2011

It's Thursday . . .

and that means it's a Dreamweaver Dream Scheme day – and designer's choice – and a new stencil just released.  Whew! 
 
This design is quickly becoming a favorite as it lends itself so well to masculine cards.    I began by dry embossing the Gears stencil (LJ911) on to silver craft metal by running it through a die cutting machine.  I experimented with other embossing methods (paper stump, stylus) and found that the die cutting machine provided the sharpest image. I then pasted the back of the stencil so the embossed areas would keep their shape.  When the paste was dry, I sanded the front to give it a distressed look and then applied alcohol inks (Ranger and Copic) using a mix of  brown and olive green colors and blended them with an applicator tool and felt pad.   I know Father's Day has come and gone, but I had this sentiment (LM244) left over from another project and thought it was better to use it than lose it. 

Thanks for stopping by.  We love showing off our stencil projects!  Don't forget to visit the other Dream Team blogs as well as the Dreamweaver Stencil blog, DREAM it UP! and leave us a note.  We love hearing from you.

Happy Crafting,
Liz

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

It's Sketch Challenge Thursday!

I love sketch challenges and I hope you'll play along with us.  Here's the sketch:


And here's my card:


I used two of the new stencils just released at last week's CHA summer show, Herringbone (LJ914) and Cameo (LL3017).  For the herringbone pattern, I spritzed the back of the stencil with Strawberry Daiquiri Memories Mist and placed it face up on the clear plastic cutting plate, then layered paper, and the remaining pads and plates to complete the "sandwich" and ran in through my BIGKick.  (You will have to use the appropriate "sandwich" for your die cutting machine.)  This produces a letterpress effect, which is quite popular now.  When dry, I cut the sheet into four rectangles and rounded the corners.   The cameo was paste embossed on Stardream Ivory paper with glossy black embossing paste.  When dry, I cut a scalloped edge around the cameo.  Ribbon and an embellishment pin were added before the cameo was attached.   I'll add the sentiment when I know how I want to use the card.   I love the letterpress look, and it's super easy with Memories Mist.  I can wait to experiment with some of the other background stamps.



Have fun with this challenge and be sure to link your project to the Dreamweaver blog, DREAM it UP! via Mr. Linky.  And don't forget to visit the other Dream Team blogs to see what special projects they've been working on.  You'll get lots of ideas and inspiration.

Happy Crafting,
Liz

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Thursday Dream Schemes Celebrates Christmas in July

I'm so glad this is a designer's choice week because I am LOVIN' the summer 2011 Dreamweaver Stencil release.  Now, I know it's hard to think of the holidays while parts of the country are experiencing unbearably high temperatures, but staying cool by the air conditioner is a great way to get a head start on your holiday projects.  And, as an added bonus, embossing pastes dry a lot faster when it's hot!

I began by paste embossing the holly stencil, LJ917 with Glossy Green embossing paste on Stardream gold card stock.  On Stardream cream card stock I embossing just the sentiment with Glossy Red embossing paste.  When dry, I cut the sentiment to size, attached it to the card and added ribbon.  While I'm a fan of the clean and simple style, I think red glitter dots scattered randomly on the holly berries might be a nice touch of bling.  That's all there is to it.  This is an easy card to make and with power pasting technique found on Dreamweaver Stencil's Embossing Paste Techniques for Artful Cardmaking DVD, you can make multiples in no time.

Be sure to check the other blogs for more projects using the new stencils and be sure to stop by in the coming weeks to see why we're so excited about these awesome stencils.

Happy crafting,
Liz

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Thursday Dream Scheme Monochromatic Color Challenge


Whew!  That's a long title.  But the fun is just beginning.  Get out your favorite stencils, papers, inks or pastes and embellishments and play along with us for today's color challenge.

Picking a color was probably the hardest part because there were so many I wanted to use.  I began by attaching the Large Flourish stencil (LJ896) to paper and adding color using Splendor Inks by Tsukineko and a large sponge dauber, which worked better than a stencil brush for this particular application.   I positioned Thanks (LS1006) on cream card stock and applied the ink again, using the dauber.  The ribbon began as a piece of cream colored sheer, but didn't look quite right, so out came the inks and dauber and voila! – color coordinated ribbon.

 Check out the other blogs for more inspiration and don't forget to stop at the Dreamweaver Stencils blog, DREAM it UP! and link your project using Mr. Linky.  I can't wait to see what color you chose.

Happy Crafting,
Liz 

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Woo Hoo It's Sketch Challenge Thursday!

Our sketch today is courtesy of team leader, Deborah March, and is so much fun to work with.


Here's what I did

It's a quick and easy card to make.  Just emboss the Baby Shoes (LL327) with copper embossing paste, let dry and cut to size.  Add sentiment and embellishments and you're done. 

Play along with us this week and link your creation to Dreamweaver Stencil's blog, DREAM it UP! so we can all see what you've done.  And don't forget to visit the other blogs for some great projects and inspiration.

Happy crafting,
Liz

Thursday, July 7, 2011

I scream, you scream

. . . you all know how the saying goes.  Summer and ice cream just go together and one of my favorite hostess gifts for summer BBQs is a do-it-yourself ice cream sundae kit.  I put two sundae dishes, an assortment of toppings and a gift certificate from a local ice cream store in a basket, wrap it with cellophane, and add a big bow to make it festive.   Taking my inspiration from Dream Team member Lee Kellogg, the Queen of Tags, and one of my favorite Dreamweaver stencils, here's the finishing touch:

I used the double glitter technique with the Sundae stencil (LL431), and began by adhering double-sided mounting paper to white card stock.  After soaping the back of the stencil with Handmade Hawaiian Coconut Soap, I removed the protective paper from the double-sided mounting paper and placed the stencil on it.  I applied Glitter Ritz Microfine glitter in bronze, regal red, pink, sea foam and stardust to the exposed areas of the stencil and rubbed it in.  Handy tip:  make a glitter scoop by first cutting a straw into 3-4 inch pieces and then cutting one end at a very shallow angle to make the scoop.  It's just the right size for getting into small areas.  I cut the image out and adhered it to white card stock cut with the largest Nestabilities Labels Four die.  Add ribbon and it's ready to be tied to the basket. 

For more fun and inspiration, be sure to stop by the other Dream Team blogs.  It's Designer's Choice this week and there will be a lot of good ideas to get your creative juices flowing, starting with the Dreamweaver Stencil's blog, DREAM it UP!

Happy crafting,
Liz

Saturday, July 2, 2011

It's a Red, White and Blue Star Spangled Blog Hop

Welcome to the 4th of July blog hop.  There's a lot going on and you don't want to miss it.   First of all, a big thank you to Taylor Usry for putting this fantastic weekend together.  There are lots of blogs to visit and you can be a lucky winner of some amazing blog candy, just by leaving a comment.   
But first, here's my card . . .

I began by applying glossy white embossing paste to the Fireworks stencil (LJ886).  After carefully removing the stencil and placing it in a pan of water for cleaning, I applied gold, red, silver and blue glitter to the center of each firework burst, being careful not to cover the entire area.  I then applied translucent glitter to the remaining areas so that all of the paste was covered.  The sentiment is from Stampin' UP! and the tag is edged with a gold Marvy paint marker.

Now, for the Blog Hop details:   Blog Hop participants are listed below.  You'll want to visit as many as possible and leave a comment on each one.  You have until Tuesday, July 5th at 6:00 pm, EST, to comment on as many blogs as you can.  Winners will be drawn from random comments on blogs, and announced on Taylor's blog,    http://taylorusry.blogspot.com    next week.





Ready, Set, Hop!
Taylor -- http://taylorusry.blogspot.com/
Cyndi -- http://scrappychickcyndi.blogspot.com/
Lynn -- http://www.stamperosity.com/
Patricia -- http://thinkingofinking.blogs.splitcoaststampers.com/
Alison -- http://alisonsrandomthoughts.blogspot.com/
Berenice -- http://karbersweetescape.blogspot.com/
Erica -- http://www.inkedupandreadytoplay.com/
Mary -- http://softangelkisses.blogspot.com/
Janelle -- http://rainpuddlesdesign.blogspot.com/
Erin -- http://stamptillucramp.blogspot.com/
Maria -- http://riacreations.blogspot.com/
Jennifer D -- http://just4funcrafts.blogspot.com/
Pam -- http://1pamperedstamper.blogspot.com/
Angelique -- http://scrapping-angel.blogspot.com/
Sandie -- http://sandieshores.blogspot.com/
Wendy P -- http://paperinkandsmiles.blogspot.com/
Suzi -- http://mrsweyremaster.blogspot.com/
Kathy -- http://pixieduststudio.blogspot.com/
Beth -- http://inkyfingersrule.blogspot.com/
Wendy J -- http://papertherapy-wendy.blogspot.com/
Kerry -- http://kerryischilling.blogspot.com/
Louise - http://www.artfullyarticulate.blogspot.com/
Liz -- http://www.blackcatsstudios.blogspot.com/
Laura - http://www.rememberinglifesmoments.blogspot.com/
Lee -- http://www.leekellogg.typepad.com/
Jennifer I -- http://www.justjingle.blogspot.com/
Krissy - http://www.paperinkspirations.blogspot.com/
Sunghee -- http://www.creativityinprogress.com/blog/
Cindy - http://cindycoutts.com/

And the prizes:
Stampendous - - http://www.stampendous.com/ (3 Cling Jumbo Flowers plus a handle - 3 prizes total) they are giving away: one Cling Jumbo Tulip set ( http://www.stampendous.com/product/0/CRS5012-R/_/Cling_Jumbo_Tulip_Set ), one Cling Jumbo Tiger Lily set ( http://www.stampendous.com/product/0/CRS5010-R/_/Cling_Jumbo_Tiger_Lily_Set), and one Cling Jumbo Dogwood set ( http://www.stampendous.com/product/0/CRS5011-R/_/Cling_Jumbo_Dogwood_Set ) . Each set will come with a Jumbo Handle. ( http://www.stampendous.com/product/32763/SSH57-R/_/Jumbo_Perfectly_Clear_Handle )

Chi Chi Memories - http://www.chichimemories.com/ - (digi stamp set of winner's choice)

Pixie Dust Studio - http://www.pixieduststudio.net/ - 2 digi images of winner's choice (1 winner)

Dreamweaver's Stencils - http://www.dreamweaverstencils.com/ - prize pack to 1 winner

Karber Digital Studio - http://www.karberdigital.com/ - 2 digi images of winner's choice (1 winner)

Maria Levine -http://www.etsy.com/shop/tykatsupplies - Ippity Kit (1 winner)

Skipping Stones Design - http://skippingstonesdesign.com/ - 1 clear stamp set of SSD's choosing (1 winner) --**as sooon as I know what the set is, I'll let you know)

Cindy Coutts/Christian Paper Crafts - http://cindycoutts.com/ - one SU stamp set - Fast & Fabulous -- US resident only (1 winner)

Sunghee Chon - http://www.amusestudio.com/sunghee/ - 1 a muse studio catalog + 1 stamp set of choice (Value equal or less than $12.99) for US resident only.

Sunghee Chon -- http://www.littlepotatohouse.com/ -- $20 gift certificates to Little Potato House template shop for US or non-US resident.

Karen from Your Next Stamp - http://www.yournextstamp.com/ would love to give away a stamp called Ellie loves The Beach http://yournextstamp.com/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=66_226_165&products_id=2586

Remember, if you get lost, go back to Taylor's blog  http://taylorusry.blogspot.com/ to get your bearings and then continue on for more fun and inspiration.

Have a happy and safe holiday,
Liz

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Summer is finally here!

Welcome to another Dream Scheme Thursday.  Summer is officially here and we have the hot weather to prove it.  So for this week's Designer's Choice I chose a card in bright, sunny colors, appropriate for the start of summer.


I began by attaching the Mosaic stencil (LJ901) to lightweight card stock and applying color using Splendor "Circus" ink by Tsukineko.  After removing the stencil and cleaning it, I repositioned it over the colored area and applied translucent embossing paste.  I carefully removed the stencil, washed it, and allowed the card to dry.  I wasn't kidding about the warm weather –  the paste dried in about 15 minutes!  Next I applied double sided mounting paper to card stock and, after soaping the back of the Summer stencil (LM294), attached it to the front of the sticky paper.  Using Glitter Ritz Microfine Glitter in Copper, I sprinkled it over the letters and rubbed it in.  After carefully removing the stencil, I applied Glitter Ritz Cool Highlight Transparent Microfine glitter to the remaining area and rubbed that in as well.  I used a scalloped oval punch for the shape and  the broad top of an orange Prismacolor pen to outline the scallops.  The ribbon is by Creative Impressions.

Thankfully, it's cooled down a bit, so I just might make another card in cool blues and greens with a hint of gray to capture the morning fog.

I hope your summer is off to a good start.  Get more ideas and inspiration by checking out the other Design Team blogs and the Dreamweaver Stencil's blog, DREAM it UP!  Leave a note letting us know you've stopped by.  We love to hear from you.

Happy Summer,
Liz

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Thursday Dream Scheme Sketch Challenge

It's a bit early, but happy Father's Day to all the Dads out there.   To celebrate Dads this Sunday, the Dream Team is combining a sketch challenge with a Father's Day theme.   Here's the sketch:
And here's my card:


Of course, artistic license came into play by combining the focal element with the sentiment.   The card came together rather quickly, using Bo Bunny Mama-razzi Stripe and Core'dinations papers and the Happy Father's Day Stencil (LM244).  I dry-embossed the stencil and sanded the raised portion to reveal the sentiment.

Happy Father's Day to all the Dads out there.  I hope your day is filled with friends and family, a barbeque, baseball game or round of golf – something special to celebrate your day. You've earned it!

Happy crafting,
Liz



Thursday, June 9, 2011

Designer's Choice on Dream Scheme Thursday

June is a busy month for birthdays in our family, so today's post is one of the cards that will soon be in the mail.   It's easy and you can make multiples in a snap just by changing the background papers to suit the recipient.

Here's what I did.  Using the Xmas Package stencil (LL466), I dry embossed it on Core'dinations Pearl Gemstones paper, then with the stencil in place, drew inside each stencil cut with a Micron archival ink pen.  Each package was cut out and the ribbons were colored with coordinating Copic markers.  Couldn't be easier.

Be sure to check out the other team blogs as well as the Dreamweaver blog, DREAM it UP! for new and exciting creations.

See you next week,
Liz

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Thursday Dream Schemes Color Challenge

I LOVE challenge weeks as they make me move out of my comfort zone.  And this week's gray and purple color challenge is no different.  Purple – and any shade in between – is one of my favorite colors and looking through my closet, I found lots of it.  Now to translate that into a card . . .     I'm not sure there are purple hibiscus, but with a little artistic license, the stencil was perfect for this project.


I taped the hibiscus stencil (LG678) to light weight cream card stock (though it looks white in the photo) and applied white matte embossing paste.  After washing the stencil and allowing the paste to dry, I repositioned the stencil over the dried paste and taped a piece of screen over the top for the faux cross-stitch look.  Once the stencil and screen were in place, I applied color using pigment ink.  It's an easy card to make and could be duplicated to make a set of note cards, with each card a different color.  Perfect for end-of-year teacher thank-you gifts.

For more ideas on the purple and gray color challenge, visit the Dream Team blogs and don't forget to link your project to the Dreaweaver blog, DREAM it UP!

Happy crafting,
Liz

Materials Used
Card stock:  Neenah Natural White for card base and hibiscus panel
Gray stripe, purple paper:  Stampin' Up
Ribbon:  Creative Impressions
Copic marker for edges of hibiscus panel

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Dream Scheme Thursday




Today is designer's choice, so sit with me and have a cup of tea, while we visit the Dream Team blogs!


This card is made with a beautiful piece of fuchsia embossing foil from MercartUSA.  With the colored side up, place the Teacup  (LG683) on the foil, then position the Black-Eyed Susan (LJ902) so that the flower is centered in the open part of the cup.   Carefully turn the stencils over and dry emboss the metal with a paper stump.  Remove the foil and, with a sanding block, gently go over the raised design to remove the color.  Cut out the tea cup and adhere to your card.  I used a piece of paper doily as an embellishment, but there are lovely vintage fabrics that would work as well.  And, a clever crafter could fashion a saucer out of the foil remnants.

If you've finished your tea or coffee, get another cup before moving on to the rest of the blogs, and don't forget to stop at the Dreamweaver blog, DREAM it UP!.  There's more inspiration ahead!

Happy crafting,
Liz

Thursday, May 19, 2011

It's Still Thursday Somewhere in the World .. . . right?

While the plan is to have the blog published by 6 a.m., I'm delighted that by the time this gets out to the world, it will still be Thursday!  It's been one of those weeks . . .

So welcome to Dreamweaver's Thursday Dream Schemes and sketch challenge day.  

This sketch allows for a lot of interpretations.  The first that came to my mind were religious ones like cathedral windows or the Ten Commandments.  But the more I looked at it, I began to think of garden gates, gatefold cards, a shaped card that when folded looked like the top half of a rocket . . . you get the idea.

There's one stencil – well a lot, really –  that I bought with a card style in mind and the Rose Bush (LL3002) fit this sketch challenge perfectly.  I began by dry embossing the stencil and then applying color with stencil brushes and Splendor inks by Tsukineko.  To get the curved top, I used an oval die cut that just happened to be the right size.  I added a ribbon closure because I have a huge stash of it, but metal hook and eye closures would be more appropriate to a garden gate.   To finish the inside of the card, I added a piece of the same pink patterned paper I used on the front.  It is pale enough that you could stencil another rose or two on the inside to keep the rose garden theme going.


Be sure to check the other Design Team blogs and link your project on the Dreamweaver blog, DREAM it UP! so we can see what wonderfulness you've created.

See you next week,
Liz

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Welcome back!

It's Dream Scheme Thursday and time for another new release from Dreamweaver Stencils.   Birds are not high on my list of favorites and, it is safe to say, I'm afraid of them when they're flying around.   However, I've seen Hitchcock's movie, The Birds,  numerous times, and I'm fascinated by birds in cages or anywhere where they can't fly at me . . . go figure!    The raven weather vane falls into the latter category – I LOVE it!   My immediate thoughts led to a Halloween or fall theme, but the possibilities are endless, especially using the N-S-E-W part of the weather vane, which I omitted from this card.

I began by adhering the patterned paper to heavier card stock and embossed the raven (LL3015) with glossy black embossing paste, omitting the weather vane portion of the stencil.  On a separate piece of card stock, I embossed the long pumpkin stencil (LL514) with white matte embossing paste.  When dry, I repositioned the clean stencil over the image and applied color using Tsukineko's Splendor inks and a stencil brush.  I cut it out and attached it to the card front.  It's  a little early for Halloween, but it doesn't hurt to get a head start!

Be sure to check out out the other blogs, but first stop on by the Dreamweaver Stencils' blog, DREAM it UP! to see what Lynell has in store for you.  There's lots of inspiration and great ideas in blogland!

Happy crafting,
Liz