My 5 Favorites Crafty Finds

I get asked all the time what I like and what I do not like. I hesitate to share what I do not like because it is strictly my preference and opinion. I do not want to give a product a bad rep simply because I do not vibe with it. However, I am more than happy to share with you what I do like and use often. These five things I use in my craft room on a daily basis.

1) Neenah White Cardstock

This should be a given right? I know most paper crafters know exactly what this is and have a stash of it that is dug into on a regular basis. However, some of you have no clue what it is and why it’s such a big deal. Isn’t cardstock all the same? It really is not. Neenah cardstock lends itself well to stamping, ink blending and alcohol markers. It makes a great cardbase and is universally known for it’s superior quality. Since I use it daily it is only fitting that this is the top of my list! I like to get it here along with all of my cardstock because the prices are excellent, shipping is cheaper than most, they get the order out fast and have excellent customer service. Plus they have a lot more things besides cardstock like ribbon, pens, envelopes etc.

2) Dream Drops

I have been a huge fan of Nuvo drops for years, but Dream Drops is an evolution of the traditional Dew Drops. It is dreamy to say the least! I use them on almost everything that comes across my craft table and I have them in every color. You can find them here.

3) Blending Domes

I have a confession to make. Ready? Oh boy! Please don’t throw things at your screen as you read it, but……I do not like blending brushes. There I said it. In fact, I rather loathe them. Remember how in the beginning of this post I said I would not say what I don’t like? Well, apparently I lied because I don’t like those brushes. I can not ever seem to get them clean and they don’t blend smooth for me. I do like these blending domes by Scrapbook.com though! They are cheaper than the brushes and can be used on any handle you have. You can just get the refill instead of the handle and the domes. What makes these so awesome is they are cheap enough that I can have one for each ink pad and they blend effortlessly because there are no hard edges like on other foam or sponge blenders. You can get them here.

4) Silicone Mat

This silicone mat is my best friend. It seriously has been a game changer with my videos because I can put it over my glass mat and it cuts the glare plus I can still see through it. It stays put and has been able to handle everything I have thrown on it. I have really struggled with finding a perfect craft mat. Either it can withstand everything, but slides around or it can’t withstand much and stays put. I would have never considered buying this mat either. In fact, I have passed over it several times because I thought it was just another craft mat. I even rolled my eyes up in my head because I thought it was just another product on an over saturated market of craft mats. Ranger sent it to me and I have been hooked ever since! If you are a YouTube Crafter or enjoys doing lives on any social media outlet you are going to want this mat! The price point on it is not bad either. I have paid far more for less superior mats. You can find it here.

5) Rinse Well

Do not let this cruddy picture fool you! Rinse Well is awesome. I like to dabble in paint, but constantly having to dump my water to get fresh can be annoying. Not to mention the times I have accidentally mistaken my paint water for my coffee. I keep this on my desk. It actually has dirty paint water in it now that I need to drain. There are little grooves on the bottom of the bowl that you can really scrub your brush on. Once the water is dirty you just push the little valve. It washes away the dirty water and fills the bowl with clean water. There also are some handy spots to dry brushes. I paint a lot and only need to change this out weekly. The link for it is here.

I hope you enjoyed these five picks. Tell me in the comment what your go to craft items are these days. I want to know!

Until next time ~ Happy Crafting!

Let’s Hear It For the Critters!

Close to My Heart came out with an adorable pet line last season. I normally do not purchase kits because I have a slew of products, but my pet paper supply is low. You don’t have to twist my arm to get me to make a purchase of cute whimsical brightly colored cats and dogs!

Krypto Layout

Sadly I only created one layout with the paper and stamp set because I do not have many non scrapped pictures of my boy!

Cards!

I was not done playing with this fun line yet, so I made some cards.

A lot of these were made with the stickers in the pack. I am not a sticker fan. In fact, I normally don’t like them. I think they are cheesy, but these worked great for this set! There is a childlike whimsy to this line and that is why the stickers work!

The cat cards were entirely made from the stickers in the kit. I bought the dog stamp set so I was able to utilize some of those on the following cards.

BUT!!!

These are my favorite pet cards I have ever made. Sadly, they are sympathy. I made them from my heart though and it is just a small thing I can send to someone that has had to lose their fur baby.

Close to My Heart still has the stamps and dies I used to create this last set of cards. You can find them here.

So, I want to know — dogs or cats? Do you have a preference?

Until next time ~ Happy Crafting!

Beauty Out of Chaos

I knew I had to have this stamp set when I saw it. The sentiment really spoke to me. It is perfect for cards, so I made a couple. It pairs nicely with the Marble Background stamp from Concord & 9.

Turn About

One of the most innovated things in the stamping industry right now is the Turn About stamps. Concord & 9 has the only collection of them (that I know of). They came up with a tool kit of such to help stampers turn. Here is the process in pictures.

Use a stamping platform for the Turn About Stamps. On the jig adhere a piece of card stock with removable adhesive lining it up on the guide. Ink up the stamp and press firm on the cardstock.

Clean the stamp, rotate the image and stamp in another color. There are numbers in the corners of it to help. Ink up the Turn About Stamps in another color and repeat the process.

To give the background a traditional marbled look I used pigmented silver and gold. Clear embossing powder was the perfect finish to the background.

The Meaning

The marbled background represented the chaos in life. At the center of the chaos it is important to remember that God is right there with us. The placement of the of sentiment is in the center to symbolize that.

I repeated the process with blues and greens.

The marble background can easily be switched out for holiday cards — just switch out your colors.

Until next time ~ Happy Crafting!

Black and Gold Cheer

The star icon from the CTMH bundle caught my eye. I knew I wanted to create an elegant gold card featuring it.

How It Came Together

This card is also extremely easy to create. Just swap a white card base out for a black one. Emboss gold stars and add a gem to the center of each. Use the same gold embossing powder for the sentiment on black paper and back it with a little pattern paper. The gold paper is from an 8.5 by 11 inch paper pack I found on sale.

Until next time ~ Happy Crafting!

Red Nosed

A red nose is better than a brown nose. These sweet little icons need a card all for themselves. To keep it simple use kraft paper and one color ink. A little pop or red adds just a touch of personality.

I really wanted a sentiment on the front, but could not figure out where to put it. So, I pulled out the bag of circles that were cut from the card front die. I stamped it with one of the background icons, inked the edges and stamped the sentiment.

To finish off the card a pretty little bow from twine and glitter drops were all that was needed.

Until next time ~ Happy Crafting!

Copper Leaves

I might be slightly obsessed with the seasonal icon bundle! I have always had a love affair with leaves. My favorite season is Fall. That is funny because I live in a part of the country that does not have Fall. When I was in 7th grade I stared making sweatshirts with leaves. I loved to paint the vines the most! I was thinking about those sweatshirts I used to make when I created this card.

Keeping It Simple

This card is fairly straight forward. I heat set the leaves in copper embossing powder and used pop dots under the circles for dimension. I finished it off with Nuvo Drops in copper. Sometimes keeping it simple is elegant and best!

Until next time ~ Happy Crafting!

Grateful Mini Icon Card

The new stamp set and die bundle from Close to My Heart is my new favorite thing. I have been having so much fun playing with it. There are so many things a crafter can do with this bundle. For this card I wanted to use as many of the cute little icons as possible from the Fall themed stamp set.

A Few Tips…

To give the card a homespun autumn feel I opted for kraft paper as the card base topped with a dark orange. I used Stazon Crimson to stamp the images and tie the card together. Twine was the perfect accent with a little tag I made from left over scrap paper. The red smears are the result of Dew Drops that went wrong. Usually I can scrap those off if I place them in the wrong spot, but this time they smeared. Instead of tossing the tag I just smeared on some more!

Moral of the card: If you make a mistake, just do it a few more times and make it a feature 🙂

Until next time ~ Happy Crafting!

FaBOOlous!

This sweet little witch is perfect flying through a night sky. I knew I had to have her and the coordinating dies from Close to my Heart! The background was originally created on YouTube for a Northern Lights themed card. However, it works perfectly for Halloween!

How To Make It!

This card came together fast because I had the background done! You can see how to create your own sky or galaxy background here:

I wanted to replicate the moon and have a sentiment on the card, but knew there was not enough room. I combined the two on a yellow flat cardstock that I die cut into a circle. To keep it Halloween and sweet I opted for Purple Crush ink for the sentiment. I used pop dots on the witch and added a few Glitter Drops by Tonic in Purple rain o finish it off!

Until next time ~ Happy Crafting!

Christmas In July — Ombre

I found a cute stamp set and matching die set on the Picket Fence Studio website. It stumped me when at first. I did not know how to incorporate the die and sentiment because they are both large and do not fit on a standard card front. So, I created this:

I created an ombre effect in green using Distress Oxide ink and a little mist of water. The image on the die cut was stamped in Candy Apple red Distress Oxide ink. I embossed with clear embossing powder. Pop dots were used to adhere to the card front. I heat embossed the sentiment in gold. To make sure the gold only embossed on the sentiment I ran some cornstarch over the sentiment spot before I embossed it. It was still looking a little on the boring side. I finished it off with a few Nuvo drops in gold.

Until next time ~ Happy Crafting!

Friendship Card for my BFF

A few days ago I had a longing to use the Sunset Rita Barakat stamp set on a card. The next day the lyrics to the Micheal W Smith song “A friend is a friend forever when the Lord is the lord of them” would not stop running through my head . I was being told to make a card with both. I was praying over my children, I started to ask God why and who the card was for. My long time childhood best friend popped in my head. This card was meant for her.

The Musical at Church

In 1987 I was in a musical at my Grandma’s church. The name was something like “Friends 4 Ever” and the music was by Micheal W Smith. This is where I built a friendship with a person who would turn out to be a “Lifer” — a life long friend. I did not know it at the time. We were in 7th grade and were more concerned with blue eye shadow, leggings with mini skirts, scrunchies and making sure we had the perfect winged hair than anything else.

Years later I would go through hard times and practically lose my faith. She would end up going through far worse times and grow in faith. Through it all we remained friends. Sure we lost contact from time to time, but we always managed to reconnect. She has been my spiritual example and I strive to have the faith she has. This card is for her — my best friend forever.

How To

It took me several days to create this card and I have two videos that show the process. The first is on how to create the background through paint pouring using the new Mod Podge Ultra as the pour medium.

The second is how I made the card with lots of tips!

https://youtu.be/eVDcVPnzKGo

Supplies

Close to My Heart

Make sure you check out Rita Barakat’s website for loads of inspiration! Seriously, it will make you smile. It is my favorite place to visit online.

Until next time ~ Happy Crafting!