20 Jan 2018

Less is More 363 - Cute

Hi there. I'm here today to introduce the next Less is More challenge and it is our dreaded (or loved) One Layer challenge with a theme of cute.


I really did struggle with this one because my style has moved away from cute images so it was difficult to find items in my stash to use.  So with that in mind, plus because I have had visitors staying which meant not much crafty time was available, I have tried to stick to my recipe of a quick card, a technique card and a masculine card ...... although I've incorporated the masculine card for a boy with the technique card this week.

If you head on over to the challenge blog you will find some fantastic cute inspiration from the design team.

1) Happy Birthday Kiddo

This is my combined technique and masculine (child) card. The technique I used was embossing with a die frame. Here's a close up if the embossing ....

....and here's the whole card

I've made a short video showing the big shot sandwich needed to create the embossed frame with the metal die on my YouTube channel. You can watch it by clicking HERE.

I'm entering this into:
Dream Valley Challenge #170 - Anything Goes (a second entry for me)
Lemon Shortbread Challenge #59 - Anything Goes
Sunny Day Crafting #3 - C is for Colour it
Watercooler Wednesdays WWC153 - Masculine (I hope a masculine child card qualifies!)

STAMPS: Efco Creative Emotions clear pirate transparent stamp, Sentiment made up from: Altenew Halftone Hello stamp, Wow! Mr Wow's wonderful words
DIES: Sizzix Nesting die
INKS: Memento Tuxedo black
OTHER: White card, colouring pencils

2) Hoppy Birthday

This is my (fairly) quick to make card. It just uses a bit of stamping, masking and stencilling.

This one is for:
Crafting from the Heart #190 - Anything Goes
Creative Moments #134 - Anything Goes
Inspiration Destination #134 - Anything Goes
Through The Craft Room Door 16 Jan- Anything Goes

STAMPS: Clearly Besotted In Print
STENCILS: Visible Image cosmic stencil
INKS: Versacolor fresh green, memento tuxedo black, distress oxides: twisted citron and cracked pistachio
OTHER: White Card, misti, post-it notes

Less is More Social Media Links:

That's it from me. I hope you liked these cards and that I'll see you again soon.

Sharon xx

18 Jan 2018

She Smiled.

Hello there. I'm thrilled to share a card that I made with some Visible Image stamps.

This card includes one of the brand new 2018 release stamps - Maskerade, which is a fantastic set of stamps, and that smiling image is perfect to lift anyone's spirits if they are feeling a little down, isn't it?

Doesn't it work superbly with the 'She Smiled' sentiment too?

How many times in our lives do we take that deep breath ...... and smile? Like calming our nerves before an interview, driving test or going out on stage. Perhaps when just greeting a friend or family member right after hearing sad news, pretending that you are well when really you are ill, or maybe before going into hospital for an operation ... and so on and so on. I can see a card like this one being used as a 'good luck' or spirit lifting card for many an occasion.

I was in a one layer mood when I made this card, so it is all on one layer and perfect for posting.

Here's how I made it. The maskerade image was stamped onto white card in Versafine Onyx black ink. I pinched some inspiration from my teammate Pauline (link to her blog is in my sidebar) and added some eyelashes with a black micron pen. You can see the incredible Christmas card by Pauline that inspired me by clicking HERE. Masking fluid was applied to the image (I painted it on with a paintbrush) and left to dry.

Once dry, the largest filled-in ink splat from the Ink Splats set was stamped around the outside of the mask using a rainbow of distress ink colours. The stamp was rotated each time I stamped to make it look like random splotches.  I was also careful to dab kitchen roll onto any wet patches of ink that remained on top of the masking fluid so that I didn't get any unwanted smudges. (How did I know to do that?...because I smudged my first version!) Additional splats were added to some of the colours on the outside edges and inside the mouth and eyes too.

Once the ink was dry the She Smiled sentiment was stamped.  I only used the first and last lines of the sentiment because I thought they worked so well. To do that I masked off the bottom two lines of the stamp with post it notes, inked up the top line of the stamp, removed the post-it notes and stamped the sentiment onto the card above the image. I cleaned and dried the stamp, then masked off the top two lines of the stamp with post-it notes, inked the bottom line of the stamp, removed the post-it notes and stamped the sentiment below the image.

The masking fluid was removed by rubbing it gently with my finger. The stickles were added to the white areas of the mask.

Stamps Used:

(please click on the picture to be taken direct to the stamp set in the online store):

 https://visibleimage.co.uk/product/maskerade/    https://visibleimage.co.uk/product/she-smiled/


Other Supplies:

Memento onyx black ink, Black micron pen, masking fluid, distress inks (candied apple, carved pumpkin, mustard seed, twisted citron, mowed lawn, salty ocean, wilted violet), stardust stickles, white card.  

Visible Image social media and other links (just click on the words in capital letters):

SHOP where the fantastic stamps are sold
BLOG with all the latest news and posts
FACEBOOK PAGE with info, inspiration and weekly giveaways
FACEBOOK GROUP come share your work with us and enter the monthly 'show and tell' challenges

I'd like to enter this card into the following challenges:

AAA Cards #106 - Quote - a second entry for me
 Allsorts Challenge #450 - No designer papers
Crazy for CAS #2 - All the colours of the rainbow - a second entry for me
My Time To Craft #362 - Something New
Penny Black and more! January - Something New - a second entry for me
Simon Says Stamp Wednesday Challenge - add a sentiment
The Corrosive Challenge #1 January - Anything Goes

That's it from me for now. Thanks for stopping by and I really hope to see you again soon.

Sharon xx

11 Jan 2018

Preview! How Fragile We Are

Hi there!

Well, it is day 4 of the Visible Image stamps 2018 release previews. How are you all liking the new sets so far? They are really awesome!

There are another 2 amazing sets being previewed on the Visible Image blog today with some superb samples from the design team. The sets are called How Fragile and Maskerade and I'm delighted that my card today made it to the previews.

This card uses only one of these sets: the How Fragile set, and I'm back to my CAS style again today.  This stamp is an INCREDIBLE representation of cracked and broken glass in stamp format. I absolutely LOVE this stamp because of its versatility: it can be used as broken glass, ice, a gun shot, a thrown stone, and arrow (gosh, that's another card right there - an arrow through a glass heart!) and lightening but I bet you can find many other uses for it too!

My interpretation of it is for a broken heart, and I turned that broken heart into an unusual sympathy card.

I used a spellbinders stacking heart die to cut a piece of plain white card, then stamped the image onto it in Memento Tuxedo black ink and heat embossed it with clear embossing powder.

The heart was then water coloured with red Gansai Tambi watercolours. to create an ombré effect.

Next I glittered some of the shards of the heart with stardust stickles and let those completely dry. Then I added glossy accents to other shards on the heart, making sure that some parts were left free of treatment.

On a piece of red card sized to fit the card blank I used the small broken pieces stamp 4 times, in a diagonal line up from the bottom right corner, rotating the stamp so that the pieces looked random.  I wanted it to appear as though the glass had fallen through to the back layer on the card and were tinkling down. These were inked in black ink and clear embossed then stickles were added before setting it aside to dry.

The red card was adhered to the card blank. The heart was fixed to a white panel with 3d foam, and the white panel was adhered to the red card on the card blank with 3d foam too.

The words were stamped on white card, cut out and added onto the heart. Isn't that font great! I love how it looks like old typewriter keys that have done a double bounce on some letters.

Inside I used two sentiments from the Go To Words set to create a sympathy message.


Supplies used

How Fragile - available for pre-order from tomorrow - 12th January.


Other Supplies: 

Sentiment stamp used inside the card: 

White Card, Red Card, Gansai Tambi Water Colour Paints, Paintbrush, Memento Tuxedo Black ink, Clear Embossing Powder, Heat Gun, Stardust Stickles, Glossy Accents, 3d Foam. 


Visible Image social media and other links:

 (just click on the words in capital letters):
SHOP where the fantastic stamps are sold
BLOG with all the latest news and posts
FACEBOOK PAGE with info, inspiration and weekly giveaways
FACEBOOK GROUP come share your work with us and enter the monthly 'show and tell' challenges


I'd like to enter this card into the following challenges:

4 Crafty Chicks #385 - No Winter Blues (no blue colour) with anything goes
AAA Card Challenge 7-20 Jan - Let Today Be The Start of Something New (my new stamp!)
A Bit More Time To Craft #59 - Anything Goes
Addicted to Stamps and More! #274 - Clean and Simple
Art Impressions #223 - Anything Goes
As You Like It challenge 4 Jan - Anything Goes
Crafting With An Attitude January - Anything Goes
Crafty Creations #358 - Anything Goes

Thanks so much for stopping by. I really hope you are as impressed with this stamp and I am and I hope to see you here again soon.

Sharon xx

10 Jan 2018

Preview! Elemental

Wow! I can't believe that I've blogged for 3 days on the trot! This is really unusual for me, but I must say that this new 2018 release from Visible Image stamps does have some truly amazing sets in it and I've loved making samples for this release.

Today sees the preview of 2 more wonderful stamp sets: Create Your Calm (an awesome inky seahorse!!) and Elemental, a fantastic blueprint background which I have used today. 

I've done something totally different from my normal CAS style today, and probably something totally different for this blueprint stamp too, and I must say that I'm in love with this make.  It's just like a real piece of art, in a frame!

There was nothing complicated about making this piece. The elemental image was stamped onto watercolour paper and heat embossed with white embossing powder.

 Then all I did was watercolour with my Gansai Tambi watercolour paints.
The images look amazing with a bit of 3d shading and the emboss resist technique is perfect for water colour painting.

This stamp also looks incredible in the background on inky pieces and panels. It can be used in full or just small elements of the stamp look amazing too. It's another great one for all of those geometric challenges that pop up now and again ;-)


But I am so glad that I made a full feature out of this incredible stamp. I really hope you love it as much as I do!
If you pop over to the Visible Image Blog you will see some amazing samples from the design team (including mine here!) using both stamp sets in  THIS POST


New stamp set: Elemental, available for pre-order from Jan 12th HERE

Other supplies: Watercolour paper, Pale green American crafts card for the mat, Versamark clear ink, Wow! Ultra bright white embossing powder, heat gun, Gansai Tambi watercolour paints, water, paintbrushes, picture frame.

I'd like to enter this card into the following challenges:
Aurora Wings Challenge #62 - Anything but a card
Craft Stamper Magazine Make it Take it challenge January - Anything goes - take a stamp and make something amazing
Happy Little Stampers Watercolour January - Anything goes (Optional twist Sequins - sorry didn't do that on this one).
Through the Craft Room Door Jan 9th - Anything Goes
Worldwide Open Design Team Challenge - Anything Goes (second entry)

Visible Image social media and other links (just click on the words in capital letters):

SHOP where the fantastic stamps are sold
BLOG with all the latest news and posts
FACEBOOK PAGE with info, inspiration and weekly giveaways
FACEBOOK GROUP come share your work with us and enter the monthly 'show and tell' challenges

Thanks for stopping by.

I'll be back tomorrow with a preview of another stamp. Hope to see you then.

Sharon xx

9 Jan 2018

Preview! It's Written In The Stars!

Hello again! Are you ready for another preview of the Visible Image stamps 2018 release that will be available to pre-order from Friday 12th January? I'm delighted that this card (as well as yesterday's card) made it to the preview post on the Visible Image Blog

Today it is the turn of a collection called Written In The Stars. These are amazing zodiac stamp sets with a fantastic geometric look. I love that each set comes complete with two sizes of the main image and two sizes of the constellations, as well as the name of the zodiac sign, the dates and some incredible words too!  The elements in each of these sets work incredibly well on their own, or mixed with other sets in the collection as well as working with other completely unrelated stamps. Personally, I think the words are going to be SO useful.

As soon as I saw these stamp sets I knew they would look stunning as light up cards, and they do!

So here is the fabulous Taurus stamp as a light up card. Taurus is going to be a great stamp for me as I have a husband, a daughter and a grandson all born under that sign.

I had to take that photograph at an angle to pick up all the silver embossing and dots of sparkle.
The background on this card was created by pouncing distress stains onto wet watercolour paper and whilst drying (when almost dry) spritzing water on to created droplets. The water colour card was then left to completely dry before stamping and heat embossing the large Taurus image, 'Taurus' and dates with silver embossing powder.


The points that I wanted lit up like stars in the Taurus image were pierced and I water coloured the inside of the Taurus image with distress stain to make it stand out. Above is the unlit version and below you can see it lit.
The Taurus constellations were heat embossed with white embossing powder and then random dots of stickles were added to give a hint of shimmery shine, representing more stars in the universe.

A circuit was created on another piece of card using copper adhesive tape, a battery and chibitronics lights, making the 'Taurus' word on the card the piece to press to trigger the circuit and make it light up. The water coloured card was attached to the circuit card with 3d foam and it was all adhered to a card blank. 

Then I heat embossed the words on plain white card and cut them out to add onto the front of the card.

Inside I used the small Taurus symbol with the happy birthday sentiment from the Go To Words set.

There 's more awesome inspiration using some of these sets over on the Visible Image Blog HERE
 These will be available for pre-order from 12th January HERE


Other Supplies: 

Sentiment stamp used inside the card:

White card, Watercolour paper, Distress Stains (wilted violet, faded jeans, peacock feathers), Water spritzer, Versamark clear ink, Stampendous detail silver metallic embossing powder, Wow! Ultra bright white embossing powder, heat gun, Stardust Stickles, copper tape, disc battery, chibitronics lights, foam tape, double-sided tape. 

I'd like to enter this card into the following challenges:
A Bit More Time To Craft #59 - Anything Goes
Dream Valley Challenge #170 - Anything Goes
HeARTful Stamp Challenge Jan 7-14 - Anything Goes + a stamp
Just For Fun Challenge - Colour challenge of blue purple and silver
Penny Black and More! January - Something New (new stamps)
Worldwide Open Design Team Challenge - Anything Goes

Visible Image social media and other links (just click on the words in capital letters):

SHOP where the fantastic stamps are sold
BLOG with all the latest news and posts
FACEBOOK PAGE with info, inspiration and weekly giveaways
FACEBOOK GROUP come share your work with us and enter the monthly 'show and tell' challenges

Thanks so much for stopping by.

I'll be back tomorrow with a preview of another 2018 release stamp. Hope to see you then.

Sharon xx

8 Jan 2018

Preview! Bloom and Grow

Hello to you!

It's an exciting day today because we are starting previews of the new release by Visible Image stamps that will be available to purchase from Friday 12th January.

Each day this week sees previews of the different stamp sets in this 2018 release being shown all over the Visible Image social media sites (links at the bottom of this post) and they are actually being launched at Creativation  in the USA in 10 days time. This is the start of a very big year for the awesome Visible Image brand and I still can't believe I have the privilege of being along with them for this fantastic journey.

I have a card to share that I made with one of my favourite sets from the up and coming release. It is called Bloom and Grow.  What a fantabulous image the baby is!!!

It's a brilliant stamp set that it is going to be a 'go-to' for all baby showers, birth announcements and birth congratulations cards.  The design team has already made some stunning samples with this set and believe me, I have lots more samples with this one up my sleeve ;-) 

Thoughts behind this card:

I always think rainbows are hopeful and positive images, so it was a natural choice to use a band of rainbow colours for a positive vibe on this birth congratulations card.  And that's where I started, simply blending a rainbow band with distress inks. Then I heat embossed the baby image with white embossing powder and coloured the flower with the small tips of distress markers.

To tie in with that wonderful sentiment I embossed the rainbow inked part of the band with a swirly plant tendril style embossing folder. This was really tricky because I didn't want to emboss too much of the baby, and it is the first time I've tried to do something like that. I think it worked though!!

Two dry embossed lines were added each side of the band and the sentiment was linked to the rest of the card by stamping it with coordinating inks, one from each side of the rainbow spectrum and some black to tie in with the mat.

Inside I stamped a simple congratulations message from the Visible Image Go To Words set over a very subtle, pastel shade of the baby image.

There's some fantastic inspiration from my teamies using this Bloom and Grow stamp set in
Sentiment stamp used inside the card:

New stamp set: Bloom and grow, available for pre-order from Jan 12th

Other supplies: White card, Black Card, Distress Inks (tattered rose, picked raspberry,squeezed lemonade, mowed lawn, salty ocean), Versamark clear ink, Wow! Ultra bright white embossing powder. Distress Markers (Picked Raspberry, Twisted Citron), Memento Tuxedo black ink, Versacolour cinnamon ink. 


I'd like to enter this card into the following challenges:
613 Avenue Create #205 - Anything goes plus twist of  something new (new baby/home etc). My first time playing here!
Allsorts Challenge #449 - Something New
Artistic Inspirations #192 - Anything Goes
Crazy for CAS #2 - All The Colours Of The Rainbow
Creative Knockouts #227 - Celebrations
Simon Says Stamp Monday Challenge - Something New
Simon Says Stamp Wednesday Challenge - Something New
Simply Create Too January - Embossing

Visible Image social media and other links (just click on the words in capital letters):

SHOP where the fantastic stamps are sold
BLOG with all the latest news and posts
FACEBOOK PAGE with info, inspiration and weekly giveaways
FACEBOOK GROUP come share your work with us and enter the monthly 'show and tell' challenges

Thanks for stopping by.

I'll be back tomorrow with a preview of another stamp set. Hope to see you then.

Sharon xx

6 Jan 2018

Less is More #362 - Purples

Hello there! Well, as it's the start of a new year and traditionally we make some resolutions at this time, I've decided to try my best to make the following three types of cards for each Saturday where I post some DT inspiration for Less Is More:
  • A masculine card
  • A fast to make card
  • An inky card or a technique card
What do you think? Is this a good idea? Are there other types of cards you'd like to see me make instead? Let me know in the comments please.

The first LIM challenge is our colour challenge and we are looking for CAS cards made using purples.


*** There are a couple of changes to our challenge this year so please head over to the challenge blog to read all about them ***

And while you are there, take a look at the incredible inspiration from the design team and also the fabulous card from Wei, our November winner, who is joining us at guest designer. She has made a fabulous card.

Our brand new sponsor for January is:

Here are 3 cards from me today:

1) Inky Butterfly Birthday

My first card is a simple birthday card with a new stamp (for me) that I am using for the first time. Here I masked off an area in a band on some watercolour card, swiped distress oxides in patches and then spritzed with water to let the inks blend together. Shaded lilac distress ink was added all over the band and spritzed to create droplets whilst drying. Dusty concord distress ink was brushed through a stencil and, after removing the masking, the edges of the band were marked with a distress marker.  The butterfly was stamped in  memento elderberry ink and heat embossed with clear sparkle embossing powder. The mat is paper inked with dusty concord.

I'm entering this one into:
Sieze the Birthday - Anything Goes
Simon Says Stamp Wednesday challenge - Something New (new stamp)
ReTarte #112 - Anything Goes
Watercooler Wednesdays WWC151 - Feminine

STAMPS: Visible Image 'Live Life Now' set and 'Go To Words' set
STENCILS: Visible Image - Fibres
INKS: Memento elderberry, Distress Oxides (Wilted Violet, Seedless Preserves), Distress Inks (Shaded Lilac, Dusty Concorde), Distress Marker (Dusty Concorde),
OTHER: Wow! Neutral Ultra Shimmer embossing powder, Watercolour card, White paper, Pearlised card blank.

2) Masculine Ombre Birthday

This card would look fab in any of a masculine recipient's favourite colours, so it is easily adapted.

OK - so I cheated a little bit here. But only because I don't own any decent large 'birthday' word dies. I had to use my ScanNcut to created a welded 'birthday' word and then I cut it out 4 times, inking one of the words in various purple inks and then stacking the 4 words on top of each other. This was going to be my quick to make card but the inking was a bit time consuming as I was lining up each colour with the end/start of letters. I attached the panel to the card blank with foam tape for even more dimension.

TIP: It would also be possible to make this card flat for posting - just use the inlaid die technique on the word, placing it inside the band when you've inked it.

I'm popping this one in at:
Craftaholics R Us #1 - Celebration Cards
Creative Knockouts #227 - Celebrations
Through the Craft Room Door (2 Jan) - Anything Goes

STAMPS: Wow! Mr Wow's Wonderful Words
INKS: Distress Inks (Dusty Concorde, Wilted Violet) VersaColor (Violet, Heliotrope)
OTHER: Purple card, White card, glue, foam tape, ScanNcut


3) Quickie Thank You

I know, it doesn't look it - but this really was very quick to make.

Just get one A6 card blank.
Cut a piece of:
  • purple card to 7cm x 10.5cm,
  • vellum to 9.5cm x 8cm, and
  • white card to 6cm x 9.5cm.
Die cut the sentiment from a piece of the same colour purple card as the mat.
Randomly stamp the image with first and second generation ink onto the small white card (don't think too much about it, placement doesn't really matter), wrap the velum around the panel, attach it to the purple mat and attach that to the card blank. Then glue the sentiment into place. Easy peasy!

This one is for:
Lemon Shortbread #58 - Anything Goes

STAMPS: Laura Ashley (not sure if it is from Connemara or Love Song set)
DIES: Tim Holtz celebration words script
INKS: Versacolor Violet and Heliotrope
OTHER: White card, Purple Card, Vellum

So, does that formula work? I hope so but please don't be shy to give me some feedback. I hope you found something you like.

I'll be back on Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday AND Thursday with previews of the brand new Visible Image stamps that will be available to pre-order from Friday 12th Jan. I really hope you pop back to see what I made.

Sharon xx

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