Saturday, November 23, 2013

Christmas Ornaments...

... what I love about making cards for the family that isn't part of my annual workshop, is that I can use any stamp set which is Christmas based to make them. I have a few favorites that were part of catalogues past.

This one was no exception. I whipped out a mix of snowflakes and cute ornaments, my silver emboss powder and just went to town.

Today's inspiration:

On the front I combined old and new stamps. Swirls Around provided the main swirly and the old snowflakes from the Winter 2011/2012 catalog was the perfect background. The best pop is the Cranberry Baker's Twine.

I brought a swirl from the same set up the right hand side of the cardstock inside the card and used the sentiment from the same set as the ornaments.

Last but not least is the November Stamp of the Month: Illuminate!!

Solid cardstock (kraft & white)

Swirls Around
Holiday Cheer
Ponderosa Pine Ink
Topiary Ink
Olive Ink
Cranberry Ink
Cranberry Baker's Twine
Silver embossing powder
Opaque Pearls - Black/Grey
Adhesive Rhinestones - Blue/Green
Itty Bitty Rhinestones

The first of many Xmas cards to come!!

Monday, October 28, 2013

Holidays From The Heart Gift Guide and Christmas Workshop

Two neat things to tell you about today.

First of all, Holidays From the Heart Gift Guide!

For each $100 that you order, you can choose a free "star" item from the Holidays From the Heart gift guide. There are some gorgeous products in there that cannot be found in the standard CTMH Idea books so make sure you look through the gift guide.

Secondly here are this year's designs for the Christmas Card workshop.

Card #1: This was inspired by a Pinterest Pin from Handmade Holiday

Card #2: This was inspired by Andrea Ewen's take on Case Study #158

Card #3:This was inspired by a Pinterest Pin from SplitcoastStampers

Card #4: This was inspired by Iwona Palamountain's take on Case Study #108

Card #5: This was inspired by Anya Schrier's take on Case Study #135

Card #6: This was inspired by Iwona Palamountain's card from her personal blog

This year, I trimmed down to six cards as I found it hard to maintain 8 designs, and from last year's experience kept most of the cards to more simplistic rather than difficult designs. After all, sometimes the simplest cards are the most elegant. 

If you'd like to buy a set of cards to put together as a pre-stamped kit or purchase pre-cut cardstock along with the associated stamp sets, please let me know.

It's getting cold - we got our first snows last weekend!

Monday, October 14, 2013

Fall Babies!!

At the office, my manager is expecting with his wife a new child any day now. This is their second but will be a sibling to their first. So, one of the ladies said we should come up with a baby gift for my manager as well as a card. [update: they gave birth to a beautiful baby boy mid-September]

You know how I feel about Hallmark cards. They're great, but for all the years I've made my own, I just don't feel they're personable enough. Plus I'm getting a reputation for making amazing cards at the office. As I don't have a proper baby welcome set it's always a creative feat to make them.

Today's inspiration is Case Study Challenge 156 : Tasnim Ahmed

I was looking for a simpler card due to time restraints for getting up early the following day and Tasnim's card was so pretty. I popped up the two chicks and dressed up the swirlies. As 156 is all about coloring, the chicks got colored!!

On the inside, I brought the swirls in and added a few hearts.

* White cardstock
* Copics Y11, Y21, Y13, R22, R29, R20, YG63, YG67, BG72, BG75, B24, B21

* Love Life
* Easter Wishes
* Blue and Green Adhesive Sparkles

Nothing like a rainy day for cheery cards!

Sunday, October 13, 2013

Scandinavian Wishes SOTM!

Happy October everyone!!

Wow time just flies. This SOTM has a special spot in my heart because I married someone who is from one of the Scandinavian countries - Denmark. It is always a good time to visit with the inlaws because they are always sweet, kind hearted and they know how to have a good time.

Get this beautiful set for 5$ more when you order 50$ or more.

Happy Canadian Thanksgiving,

Monday, September 30, 2013

Mom's birthday...

So close to being 100% CTMH materials! Mom's birthday was about to arrive back in August (yes, another slightly outdated post) and I figured that instead of giving her real flowers, I'd decide instead to stamp flowers all over the front of her card. Besides, they don't require much care.

I decided to take a bold move and not use any one inspiration, but here is where I confess my addiction to Case Study. It was probably a combination of all of them.

All the cardstock is from CTMH, but the exception is the butterflies - they were cut with a limited edition butterfly punch from Creative Memories. If you look really closely, there are a few red rhinestones scattered all amongst the flowers. As this was done so long ago, the fun part is remembering all the different inks I used to stamp the different flowers.

As always I brought the flower motif inside the card down the left hand side of the card, using two of the colors from the front of the card. By turning the stamp every so often, it gives a look of tumbling flowers. I can't figure out which set the sentiment was from!

* Creative Memories limited edition butterfly punch

* La Belle Vie Paper Pack Level 2
* Joyful Birthday
* Dreams Come True
* Ruby Ink
* Barn Red Ink
* Smoothie Ink
* Blush Ink
* Ponderosa Pine Ink

The air is getting nippy again but October and Halloween are coming!

Saturday, September 7, 2013

Happy Father's Day!!

It is that day in the year that we celebrate everything that our Dads mean to us. And for those of us who were the eldest and female in the house, there were a lot of funny stories to follow.

I still remember how loud it was when Dad's jaw dropped - after I'd asked him for a 3AM curfew, the day I brought home a boy that wasn't Chinese (and I even married him six years later!). And then when I married into an amazing family, acquired a second Dad and there were equally many amusing moments between him and I. (And yes I know... this post is a little late... it's been a crazy year for me).

Today's inspiration is Case Study : Challenge #145 interpreted by Lynn Mangan.

I used the rock and roll technique to give the lanterns some more oomph. Perhaps this year I'll wise up and actually find a proper Father's Day and Mother's Day stamp set in time for next year. In the meantime, I think this one turned out pretty awesome.

* Solid Cardstock

* Paper Lantern
* Classmate Alphabet
* Designer Buttons - Wooden
* Itty Bitty Sparkles
* Adhesive Pearls - Mocha
* Outdoor Denim Ink
* Topiary Ink
* Honey Ink
* Autumn Terracotta Ink

I meant to post this back in June but as you can see...  a little late on the post :)

Monday, September 2, 2013

And we hail the beginning of Fall...

... I am always sad to see Summer go, but travelling usually makes up for the 10+ months of winter we normally have here. Onto cheerier things, a few things to tell you about in the month of September!!

First up is the September Constant Campaign - it's National Scrapbooking Month!

This means that with a qualifying purchase of $50, you can pick up this awesome trio of stamp sets for only $10 more:

You get one alphabet set, a bunch of super cute images (did I mention I was a sucker for butterflies?) and a bunch of useful sayings for scrapbooking and cards alike.

And of course the best for last two powerful stamps that can be used in many different ways - September's SOTM: Poster Tidings.

 It could be tags, it's just asking for the masking technique and there's a cool Subway Print video on the many different ways you could use it.

Happy Fall,

Friday, August 30, 2013


... there is that one, amazing person that you meet, and while they're there they make a heck of a difference but there comes a time when they have to leave again.

I had the fortune of meeting an incredibly bright young man who was a summer student on our .Net project. As with the end of August looming school starts again and he has to go back. I have only met someone this intelligent, humble, and pleasant person with a wicked sense of humor twice in my life before. One of them helped me launch my career, one I married, and this one... he could literally be the next Steve Jobs but much kinder and more considerate.

Anyway. We are sending him onto his 3rd year of university with a Nespresso and a card.

Today's inspiration: Case Study 151 : Second Interpretation by Jocelyn Olson.

 I just had to do some shading and coloring with my Copic Markers with the July 2013 SOTM, Sweet Life and I used a ribbon cut from Florentine to give it a bit of pop. I cut out the leaves, the apple and the flower which is raised up with foam tape.

* White Cardstock
* White ribbon
* Copic Markers R29, R24, R22, R20, YG67, BG10, YG63,E39, E33

* Solid color cardstock for card base
* Sweet Life (July 2013 SOTM)
* For A Friend
* Scrapbook Statements - Poets
* Saddle Pigment Ink
* Black Ink
* Mocha Adhesive Pearls

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

July Specials!!

One day I will learn to post these items at the beginning of the month instead of in the middle, but that requires a bit more expert juggling of my personal and work life.

Anyway, onwards - July has a beautiful SOTM called Sweet Life that is just begging to be colored and could top any type of card from Birthday to Mother's Day.

Speaking of peaches, I have a peach bellini experiment that still needs to be tried out. You can get this pretty set for only 5$ with a 50$ purchase.

Workshops and Canvases are such a cool idea, and you can jazz up your walls for 50% off!

It's canvas instead of paper and you can put it all together and customize with your personal photos and colors to match your home decor. Bet you can't buy that piece at your local Bed Bath and Beyond.

If you have any questions or would like to order, don't hesitate to contact me!

There are a few more cards coming down the line but until then, Happy Summer!

Monday, July 22, 2013

Congratulatory card...

... there is nothing like seeing my little sister (in law) accomplish her dreams of becoming a doctor. And touching to be able to be there to sit through her convocation ceremony. Didn't understand a word of it however, but that's ok.

It may have taken me six months to get all my stuff together and find her a pretty necklace as well as come up with a card.

Inspiration that triggered it: Case Study Challenge 148 : Iwona Palamountain's interpretation.

And I brought the roses inside along with a saying from Scrapbook Statements - Everyday Life. I learned so much from a Copic tutorial on blending that Iwona Palamountain posted a while back and it has made a world of difference - my colors blend better and I learned to work dark first as opposed to light first. I also realized through that post that sometimes you can use all sorts of combinations of colors - you don't necessarily have to stick to one set of shades.

I was so thrilled with  my blending technique... but I think pigment inks would be a better choice for not bleeding next time. I've picked up a set of these mini pigment pads - basic - and can't wait to play with them.

* Dreams Come True (retired)
* Scrapbook Statements - Everyday  Life
* Happy Valentine's - Jan 2013 SOTM
* La Belle Vie Level 2 Paper Pack
* Adhesive Pink Rhinestones
* Adhesive Opaque Pearls
* White Daisy Ink
* Outdoor Denim Ink
* Smokey Plum Ink

*... will post the Copic Marker #'s later!!
* Cream cardstock

Congratulations again to my little sis for becoming a doctor - she's gorgeous, smart and has a huge heart. I wish her all the success in her career.

Monday, July 8, 2013

We interrupt our regular scheduled programme for some sad news.

We said goodbye to a special member of our family last weekend.

Spikey has been declining in health for some months now and we have done several rounds of vet visits, tests and medications in hopes we could fix him. However, his little body gave up on us this past weekend and we felt that it was time to let him go. He had such a big heart and an even bigger personality.

Relaxing in bed in his favorite spot - Mommy's lap

We love you Spikey and you have blessed us for six years (he turned 10 this year) ... may you find health and happiness where you are headed next and we'll see you again some day.

Sunday, June 30, 2013

I procrastinated...

... but then again the baby is still new and the parents are still settling in, so I have some time.

A coworker who travels regularly with my husband on his work trips just had a baby girl last month. We are waiting on them to get settled before we visit, meet their new daughter and wish them the very best. From pictures he has sent me and stories he's told she's quite the little spitfire. If only all girls started this way and didn't pay attention to media expectations... but that's another discussion for another time.

Inspiration: Mojo Monday's MOJO297 as interpreted by Julie Tilman of Poetic Artistry.

I couldn't help but bring out some old CTMH product that I had purchased and never used - Just Blooms in White Daisy. And as always, I couldn't tell you where my ribbon came from but it's so gorgeous I had to add it to the card.

Inside the little chick is paper pieced - she was originally for the front of the card but I couldn't make it work!

* Solid cardstock
* Red ribbon

* La Vie En Rose Level 2 Paper Pack
* New Arrival
* Happy Easter
* Just Blooms White Daisy Variety Pack
* Gypsy Ink
* Outdoor Denim Ink

It has been amazing to see my city rally after the Flood of 2013... hope you are all safe and dry.

Monday, June 17, 2013

Promotional Item Replacement...

... looks like this past weekend everyone had "mini-banner" on their minds.

If you were hoping to get one of these they are now all sold out :( but as this promotion is running the length of June, they are offering the milk cartons instead for the same deal.

You get two milk cartons and clips to decorate however you like - it's time to start getting crafty! What will you be making this week?

Hope you all have a great week!

Sunday, June 9, 2013

It's always exhilarating...

... to hear that one of your closest friends is in the family way. We first got wind of them visiting Calgary late last month, and they are slated to be here end of this month. I look forward to seeing them but more importantly I got invited to a baby shower so the truth comes out!

Congratulations to them - they are our brother and sister of the heart. I can't go to this baby shower empty handed, so I had to make a card. As to what the gift is, I figure it out later.

Today's inspiration: Case Study #140, interpreted by Amy Wanford.

I used the rock and roll technique on the baby image with the kitten, stamping first in Amethyst ink and rolling the edges in Moonstruck. 

I brought the background image on the front to edge the left side of the cardstock on the inside and stamped the sentiment in Moonstruck.

* Solid cardstock

* New Arrival
* Baby Love
* Hello Tweety
* Amethyst Ink
* Moonstruck Ink
* Honey Ink
* Paradise Baker's Twine
* 2" Scallop Punch
* Opaque Adhesive Pearls
* Itty Bitty Sparkles

It's still raining around here but at least we're getting some moments of sunshine which is better than nothing!

Thursday, June 6, 2013

June 2013 SOTM is here...

... with a few exciting things from CTMH! My plants are back, the snow is *finally* gone and the cat is clamoring to be let out.

First up is the Stamp of the Month: A Flowering Bunch.

 This set is just begging to be colored whether or not it's used as part of a scrappy layout, DIY embellishments, or additions to cards. You can grab this set for 5$ with a minimum 50$ purchase.

Secondly, as you know Mother Nature has turned on Oklahoma. Close To My Heart has pledged 100% of all sales from the stamp set "A True Thank You" from the Autumn/Winter 2013 Idea Book to help tornado victims.

For a limited time, you can support the troops and be patriotic with this limited edition stamp set, Courage (Canadian) and Home of the Brave (US).

3$ from each sale of the B-sized Courage set and 5$ from each sale of Home of the Brave set will be donated to the Canadian Hero Fund from June 1 - June 31. The Canadian Hero Fund supports spouses and children of fallen Canadian military troops by providing post-secondary education in Canada.

And finally, the best for last (I wasn't kidding about all the awesome stuff going on this month) - a free mini-banner if you purchase $25 worth of products that includes a stamp set.

Jazz up parties, office spaces, and even areas in the home by making your own banner to suit the space. This includes 10 chipboard pennants in different shapes and jump rings to connect it all together.

I've just got wind of another couple expecting so I'm off to make another baby card... it is June after all, right?