Thursday, February 17, 2011

Pretty Pink Heart

This week has completely gotten away from me! I meant to get this sweet Lace Heart from Lockhart Stamp Company posted earlier this week, but here it is now. No time like the present, right?

This is one of the latest Lockhart beauties, colored with Prismacolors. I cut it out around the edges and popped it up on some foam tape to have it pop right out at you. I was quite relaxed coloring this - there is something so soothing about sitting down to color. (I think it's that you sit down and focus on something that has nothing to do with the day's problems; cheap therapy!)

The color combination of pink & green was inspired by a funny conversation I had last Friday night. Some people from Ward's office had joined us for dinner, including one his younger staff members. A song came on the radio that was so quinessentially 80s, that four of us started singing along. The other two, it dawned on me, probably weren't born when the song came out! We asked them (one was born - still in diapers!- and the other wasn't)and it prompted one of them to ask what my friend and me how high our hair was in the 80s. (Funny, right?) I had to tell him that because my hair has always been so stick-straight, I could never get it high - it would always fall flat. He continued to ask what I was like, and it got me thinking about all things preppy...which led to this inspired pink & green combination. ;) You just never know when inspiration is going to strike!

I had a chance to meet some serious Lockhart fans at Angela's Happy Stamper this week on Tuesday. We had fun using a Lockhart stamp for paper piecing, then looked through the Lockhart catalog together. It is so fun to meet fellow Lockhart lovers in person!

I hope you find inspiration in an unexpected place today. Be well!

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Framed Tags

I am joining in on the Anniversary fun at Papertrey Ink today! The challenge for today is to create tags with a frame on it - and with all of the frame images that Papertrey has to offer, it is so easy to create something memorable! I started with Tag Sale #3 in Spring Rain and Melon Berry cardstocks. Isn't this a fresh-felling color combination? (Yes, that's a little spring fever sneaking in!) Add a little Vintage Cream and I have a little bit of colorful love. Sigh.

One of the fun things about Tag Sale #3 is that it basically has a built in frame! If you take a look at the background, you can see that I masked off the edges, and stamped Text Style II only in the center. So easy and it gives a nice subtle frame. When you're creating a project like this, why not add details upon details?

From there, I inked the edges with Papertrey's Vintage Tea Dye Duo, then stitched on a piece of Melon Berry that I had given the impression plate treatment with Background Basics: Diamonds. Just more details for this sweet tag! I set my sewing machine for a short, close zig zag stitch to adhere it. My focal point is the frame from Fillable Frames #10 and a sentiment from Fillable Frames #6. (Don't tell my other Fillable Frames, but the frame in #10 is my favorite! I feel a little guilty playing favorites, but that's the way it goes sometimes, hee hee.) The rhinestones are clear Kaisercraft ones that Papertrey carries, but I gave them a little coordinating treatment with my Copic.

This tag uses the same color combination. I used the Linen & Canvas impression plate on this one, along with the frame from Fillable Frames #1 and sentiment from Fillable Frames #12. The background is very subtle and done in the same way as my previous tag with Text Style. And I'm sure you recognize that gorgeous die cut flower as the must-have Beautiful Blooms II #1 - so cute!

Finishing off both tags with buttons, button twine and ribbon lend the perfect touches. I hope you found a little inspiration for creating some of your own Framed tags today! Don't forget to check out Nichole's blog to see the amazing prize for the challenge winner - you will LOVE it!

Have a great weekend! Be well.

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Wee & Whimsical Wednesday

I've run into a few local readers lately, and I just have to say, it is so nice when you tell me who you are! I love knowing that I'm not sitting here talking to myself like a mad-before-her-time woman. And I promised one of you the other day that I was going to get back into the swing of things - so here, for your viewing pleasure (hee hee) is the first official Wee & Whimsical Wednesday of 2011. Whoo hoo!

I opted to make a vintage-feel Valentine for today's post. I stamped the Itty Bitty Chintz heart, the Cupcake with Sprinkles and the Coffee To Go Lockhart images onto Inchie, Inchie + and Twinchie squares (respectively, all from Inchie Arts. I used Dark Cream for each of these, lending a great continuity with the images. For further continuity, I used the same colored pencils for all three images.

Here's a closer look:

For further detail, I used Liquid Applique for the whipped cream on the coffee, and Rock Candy Distress stickles for the sprinkles on the cupcake. Each of the squares were edged with the Vintage Tea Dye Duo from Papertrey ink. All squares from Inchie Arts are made from artist-quality matboard, so you can really put any kind of medium on them without having to worry about them breaking down. They're tough in a beautiful way!

Valentine's Day is sneaking up on us quickly, so why not pull out your Inchie Arts squares and Lockhart stamps and create something beautiful? Your Valentine will be sure to appreciate your thoughtfulness! :)

Have a great day & be well.

Monday, February 7, 2011

New Lockhart Teddy Bear

We have a special friend in our house...his name is Daddy Bear. He came to live with us the day that Beav was born. See, on the first day that Wally came to delight our lives, my husband left the hospital for a while. It had been a long night, and he said he was going to go home and take a shower and pick up a couple of things that I'd forgotten. When he came back, he had an ENORMOUS baseball glove (sadly, it doesn't look so enormous any more) and a sweet stuffed bear. Wally never really got to bond with the bear, because my husband, with all of his naivete, picked a bear with button eyes and other various chocking hazards.

Fast forward 18 months later, when Beav came to capture our hearts, and there was a repeat of super-daddiness, but this time, he'd learned a bunch about picking a child-safe bear. Daddy Bear, as he came known as, went everywhere with us. His grey fluffiness was a comfort for many years and was that object that caused immense panic when he couldn't be located. He traveled all over Europe, to Thailand and to Hong Kong (that bear is very well-traveled and even has his own backpack thanks to one of my dear friends). Sadly, Daddy Bear has faded into the background in Beav's life over the last couple of years, but he still holds a special place in our family.

When Karen Lockhart showed me this delightful Bennie Bear, I just knew I would be recreating it into Daddy Bear. I grabbed my French Grey Prismacolor pencils, and started coloring. Beav took a look at it and declared him Daddy Bear, so I think I got it right! I opted to use blue and orange for his sweater because those are Beav's favorite colors; it was a fun way for Beav to know this was just for him.

Here's a closeup of the cute lil' guy. I didn't use anything special for blending the colors. I actually just used the pencils themselves, using a similar layering that you would do with Copics. I started with a light grey (French Grey 10%) and colored the whole area. I then went in a did the edges and corners with a darker (French Grey 70%), came back and added a bit of French Grey 50% along those areas, then finished it off with French Gray 30%, using circular motions to blend the dark areas into the light. The result is a nice shaded look. I prefer my pencils in smaller areas like this over my Copics because you can get a much more controlled look; it makes staying in the lines so much easier.

One thing that I haven't mentioned (at least in recent memory) is that I like having a black fine-tip pen nearby when I'm coloring. I tend to reach for my Copic Multiliner 0.3 most. When I go over an area with the colored pencils, it can dull the black ink a bit (for example, I colored over the facial features of the bear and they looked washed out). When this happens, I like to go back with my Multiliner and go back over the areas that look faded. It can really bring a washed-out image back to life effectively.

If you haven't seen the latest Lockhart Stamps, take a peek at the Lockhart homepage. They're so beautiful, and there are some new & different images for spring. (The Ducks In A Row is my absolute favorite! I say that all the time and pretty much live by that, so you'll be seeing it soon!)

Have a wonderful day and thanks for reminiscing about Daddy Bear with me. Be well.

Thursday, February 3, 2011

Valentine Angel

I wanted to pop by and show you a non-traditional Valentine card today. I have been neglecting my poor, beloved Prismacolor pencils lately, so out they came to color this lovely Lockhart Love Angel wanted to challenge myself to create a Valentine without red in it, and other that the touch of red in the patterned paper, I succeeded. Here's a closer look:

You'll notice that the dress has a plaid piece on it; that was paper pieced in, then I choose colored pencils to match, coloring the rest of the dress in the same colors. I love the way this turned out! If you look closely, you'll also see that I shaded the plaid piece with pencils, too. This is a great tip - it not only adds much needed dimension through shading, but works to make the pieced in paper look less obvious, too!

I took a little extra liberty with the heart the angel was holding, too. It is popped up on a piece of foam tape and covered in Glossy Accents. Once it was all dry, I was pleased to see that the colored pencil shading still showed through beautifully. When popping up a piece like this, keep in mind that you should remember to color the piece underneath in a similar manner - it gives that polished look that we're all striving for!

(Both pieces of patterned paper are from Little Yellow Bicycle, in case you're wondering. It's their Savor Collection - and it is full of sweet, small scale patterns that are great for cards.)

There are many Lockhart stamps that lend themselves to fun paper piecing. If you haven't played around with this technique in a while, give it a try. (And if you're one of my local friends, you can get some tips in person from me on Tuesday, February 15th, as we will be looking at it on Technique Tag Tuesday at Angela's Happy Stamper. What do you think the chances are that we'll be playing with a Lockhart Stamp or two?! ;)

Have a fantastic day! Be well.