Scrappy Shak Design Team: Happy Fall Pumpkin Duo

Me: Does this look like a gourd?
Him: No.
Me: (tries yet another color combo) Does this look like a gourd?
Him: Well… that’s better…
Me: (finishes card)
Him: Now that looks like a gourd.

I had a bit of a time trying to get the colors “right” for the green gourd/pumpkin. I wanted to make one of those cool blueish green gourds you see at the pumpkin patches. I was thinking a hazy, blue green, grey… I didn’t quite accomplish that, but I think I’m okay with my green gourd, which may not exist in real life, but that looks good next to my orange pumpkin!

The colors I settled on were Rustic Wilderness and Bundled Sage. To get the four different paper colors for the colorize pumpkin die, I ink blended Rustic Wilderness on watercolor paper, using a heavy hand, and then did another piece using a light touch. I used Bundled Sage on another piece of paper, and Antique Linen for the small diecut on top which will be the highlight piece. After blending, I flicked water on all of the pieces, and dried. Then I splattered with Antique Linen, Rustic Wilderness, and Vintage Photo.

The pumpkin colors were much easier for me to choose: Crackling Campfire, Carved Pumpkin (surprise!) and Spiced Marmalade. I flicked and splattered again with the same colors I used for blending. I used Carved Pumpkin distress oxide spray for splattering, which gave a different look, but that was just a “use what you have”, not a planned happening. I like how it came out. By the way, when I splatter, I go from the lightest color to the darkest, and dry between layers. If I want tiny splatters, I will use a #4 fan brush. If I want small splatters, the distress splatter brush works for me. Otherwise, and if I’m being lazy, I’ll just splatter with the tube of the sprayer from the bottle of spray stain. Then I’ll curse myself for being lazy, because the splatters are too big!

The only part of the base layer dies (labeled A-Green-1 and B-Green-1) that you’ll see is the middle part of the stem. The rest of it gets covered up by the pumpkin, and the small accent stem pieces. I used spray stain in Peeled Paint for this. I used Rustic Wilderness to color the paper to use for the small stem accents.

After I finished my pumpkins, I worked on the background. I was thinking blue, so I blended Tumbled Glass and Prize Ribbon on watercolor paper, then flicked on some water, and dried. While I thought the intensity of the background matched the pumpkins, I decided it was too distracting, as I wanted the pumpkins to be the focal point. So the blue background went into my “use for something else” pile. Something else in my “use for something else” pile was a piece of tan paper that I had embossed with the Quilted embossing folder. But now, it looked better with the pumpkins. I’m glad I have that pile! I colored a piece of watercolor paper with Bundled Sage, and used it to cut out some leaves from the Garden Greens die set that kinda sorta could pass for squash leaves.

When I assembled everything on the card base, it seemed like the pumpkins needed a little more… grounding… so I cut a piece of picket fence from my Village Cottage Bigz die, using the Tim Holtz white wood grain paper. I blended Antique Linen onto the wood grain paper, then added Vintage Photo. I used Bearly Art glue with a precision tip to stick everything down, except for the pumpkin. For those, I used Scrapbook Adhesive Foam Squares: thin for the green one, regular thickness for the orange one.

For the sentiment, I used the new Alphanumeric Theory dies. I cut the sentiment out of brown textured paper from Sizzix, and then cut two more of each letter from kraftstock. I’m not sure how anyone with porkchop fingers can manage those little pieces, but I was able to glue the three layers together, to give it more dimension. It was difficult lining them up on the card, even using a T-square ruler. Too much caffeine for me I guess! Sometimes I will apply double sided adhesive to the back of the paper before I cut it, but with something this small, I knew I wanted to use liquid glue so I would have some “wiggle time” to line them up.

Happy Fall y’all, and thanks for stopping by!

Products available from ScrappyShak include:
Tim Holtz Sizzix Pumpkin Duo dies
Tim Holtz Sizzix Quilted embossing folder
Tim Holtz Sizzix Alphanumeric Theory dies
Distress Ink Pads
Distress Spray Stains
Tim Holtz Wood Grain cardstock
Tim Holtz watercolor paper
Tim Holtz Distress Splatter brush

Simon Says Stamp: STAMPtember!

Oh my, a month-long stamping party! Yes, please! The fabulous online retailer, Simon Says Stamp, created this celebration wonderful event that features special products, inspiration, and collaborations all month long. STAMPtember started early this year, when they made a call out on social media, looking for people to help promote their event. They gave out a super secret previously unreleased stamp set for free to the first 100 people to respond. Talk about generous! I was lucky enough to see the offer and get in on it. I received my stamp set a couple days ago, and have been playing with it every since. We promised to not put our projects out until the release at 12:01am ET September 1st. There will be special events all month long, so you want to be sure to follow their blog at Most of the special collaboration products get posted on this site at midnight, and in the past some have sold out before most of us are awake in the morning! So if you see something you like, don’t hesitate to purchase it. When it’s gone, it’s gone! Remember, there’s no crying in cardmaking!

So, without any further ado, here it is!

Simon Says Stamp Printmaking Birds, sss202550c

This set is so cute! It’s a group of 8 little birds. There’s an outline stamp that stamps the set of birds. There are 3 layering stamps which add the body, the wings, and the belly, all in one shot for all of the birds. It comes with a few sentiments, including birthday, miss you, and encouragement verses. I especially love “hope is the thing with feathers…”, as I love that lyric by Emily Dickinson. I immediately thought of bluebirds (of happiness) and feathers of course.

I used Tim Holtz kraft cardstock, for kind of a “folk art” look. I played around with some blue oxide inks, and decided on Salvaged Patina for the body of the bird. I tried Uncharted Mariner for the wings, as well as a few browns, and didn’t love any of them. I don’t have Peacock Feathers in the Oxide formula, but I thought that would look the best. I just didn’t like the way the Distress Ink looked on the kraft stock. I thought “use what you have”, and I know that the oxides have white pigment in them, which my Distress Ink pad was missing. What I did was to understamp white Picket Fence Ink, and then stamp the Peacock Feathers on top of it. That gave me the look I wanted. I tried a few colors for the belly, and settled on Wild Honey.

It would have been much more difficult to do this without my stamping platform. I planned to stamp the outline so I could see where the fill in stamps go, and then stamp the outline again at the end to get a crisp outline. To do that with my stamping platform (regulation size), I was able the use half of the platform with the outline, and leave it there in the same position on the cover, and then use the other half of my platform to add the other layers.

I added a sentiment on vellum, and added a strip of cardstock to match to fill out the rest of the cardfront. I really wanted to add a feather, and I had just gotten the fabulous die set from Gina K Designs, Fancy Feathers. It still looked like it needed something, so I added a few black sequins.

I really liked the colors that I used for the birds, and wanted to make a similar card on white cardstock. For the second card, I used a stencil by Picket Fence called Mermaid Scales, SC-171. I purposefully blended Salvaged Patina Distress Oxide with a blending brush to be inconsistent, with some darker areas and some lighter. I thought it would add the appearance of texture. I stamped the sentiment in Versafine black ink, and embossed it with detail clear embossing powder.

Which one is your favorite? I hope you got some ideas for your own projects with this fun set. And guess what? There are coordinating dies available!! How cute will it be to sprinkle these cute little birds all over the place! Thanks for looking. Be sure to check out all the fabulous fun Simon Says Stamp has in store for us this STAMPtember!

Products featured:
Simon Says Stamp Printmaking Birds

Gina K Designs Fancy Feathers

Picket Fence Mermaid Scales

Misti Stamping Tool

ScrappyShak Design Team: Feathery Suspect

Hello crafty friends! I was so excited to get two of my new Tim Holtz Sizzix Chapter 3 dies, I wanted to use them both at the same time! I ordered Feathery and Specimen. I love birds, and have been searching for the older Sizzix Bigz feather die that has been retired for a while, so I was very happy that Tim released these new thinlit feather dies. I can see them being used for all kinds of different occasions and holidays, as well as Home Dec projects. I also had to get the Specimen dies, because they seemed like a staple that I would be using time and again, especially when I think about mixed media projects. So there I was… feathers… and files…. what to do? I could make a bunch of feathers, and put them in a file folder, like someone was collecting them to… do what? Then it hit me – evidence! Evidence of something, done by… a Snarky Cat! I have those stamps! Then it all came together.

The words that come with the Specimen set are things like “files”, “series”, “archive”, etc. I figured if I had enough patience, I could cut the teeny tiny letters out and make my own word, “evidence”. It worked, and it fit perfectly on the file folder in the specimen set.

I started by using my Distress Spray stains to color watercolor paper. I used two colors for each different color of feathers, drying in between each color. The colors were Aged Mahogany, Barn Door, Black Soot, Villainous Potion, Salvaged Patina, Antique Linen, Vintage Photo, and Gathered Twigs. After I die cut the feathers, I outlined each one with Vintage Photo and a sponge applicator. I tend to be a little lazy at times, but here’s where you shouldn’t skip a cleaning step. Even if your watercolor paper looks dry, I find some of the color stays on the die after cutting, so I always take time to rinse and dry my dies. Otherwise it might rub off the next time I use it, speaking from experience!

After getting my feathers cut, I cut my file folder. I have some neat paper I got a long time ago. It’s manilla colored, heavier, and has some wrinkles in it. I got it in a cardmaker’s paper pack, so I have no idea what brand it is. You can certainly use whatever you have. I grunged up the edges of this with Vintage Photo as well, and added my “Evidence” word.

Next I stamped my Snarky Cat onto Neenah Classic Crest Solar White cardstock with VersaFine ink in Onyx Black, using my Misti Stamp platform. The speciman die set comes with a die that will cut it out perfectly to fit into the slide cutout. I wanted it to look like a mug shot, so I used a darker yellow paper to layer behind my cutout numbers.

The Specimen set has the right size dies to make the black label, and a smaller die to fit behind it (in yellow). You have to be careful to save the circle in the middle of the letter “o”, and the number “0”, when you die cut “No. 3074”. The negative inside of the “4” was just too tiny to try to save, so I used a fine tip marker to draw in a small triangle so that it would look like a number. Hard to explain, but you’ll understand when you try it. You could of course leave those little pieces out, but I thought they were needed. I cut the slide again from black paper, just to get the little negative circles to pop in the corners of my slide. I’ve seen people use small brads, but I didn’t have any. I used’s Pops of Color in black first, but I smeared one before it was completely dry, so I had to start all over again! If you get a chance, watch Tim’s Youtube for this set. Lots of great ideas! The paper for the slide was from Tim’s kraftstock newer paper packs.

When I was ready to put the card together, I made a 5×7 base from Neenah Dessert Storm cardstock, and picked a piece of paper from the Backdrops paper pack that I thought would pull it together. I thought the file folder needed something else, like a sentiment. I felt there was too nuch white space. I chose one from the Noteworthy stamp set and used VersaFine ink. Poor Snarky Cat. Don’t lose hope! Maybe there isn’t enough evidence for a conviction! Ha ha. I positioned everything the way I wanted it before I glued the folder to the card front, added the feathers (with liquid glue), and then added a tiny clip embellishment. The Snarky Cat slide was popped up with dimensional foam and attached to the card.

I hope this inspires you to play with the Specimen and Feathery sets! It was lots of fun creating this!

Products used, available at

Tim Holtz Sizzix Specimen thinlit dies
Tim Holtz Sizzix Feathery thinlit dies
Tim Holtz Stampers Anonymous Snarky Cats stamps
Tim Holtz Distress Spray Stains
Misti Stamp platform

ScrappyShak Design Team: Happy Birthday Shaker

Hey paper people! Here’s another shaker card I made using the super simple Sizzix Shaker Panes with coordinating framelit circle dies. You can read my previous post to see more details on how easily these shaker cards go together. Here I used Altenew Square Weave stencil and Spellbinder’s Simply Perfect Layered Blooms dies to add some interest. By the way, these dies are currently on sale at! The stamp is from Stampabilities. The challenge I had with this card was trying to use the acrylic circle that comes with the Sizzix Shaker Panes.

The package insert states that the shaker pane cover is heat resistent, so you are able to stamp on it, use embossing powder, and melt the powder. I had to foresight to do a test run on a sheet of clear acetate that I had in my stash. If you try this, be careful not to apply too much heat, as the acetate will warp and melt, unlike the piece that’s included with the shaker pane kit. I first had a problem trying to get good coverage of ink that would take the embossing powder. I tried using Memento, and then Versafine black ink pads. I like to stamp in black and then emboss in clear. That way, if there is any stray embossing powder, you don’t really see it. I usually do this, rather than stamping in clear embossing ink (like VersaMark) and using black embossing powder. It usually works great on paper. Also, to add complexity to the task, the image that I wanted to use was on a wood mounted rubber stamp. I’ve really gotten used to using a stamping platform (Misti) where you can stamp again if you miss a spot. With a wood block, you only get one chance at a perfect stamping!

Next I tried StayzOn black ink with detail black embossing powder. I used my embossing powder duster first to make sure the embossing powder didn’t cling where it wasn’t supposed to. This is my favorite smelling ink pad for sure! It is an older pad, and I didn’t have a reinker, so the image was too light and dried too fast to get the embossing powder to stick. I then tried VersaMark embossing ink with detail black embossing powder. This gave me the best results in my test run. I was ready to try it on the one piece that comes with the shaker panes. It came out okay, but I am the ultimate perfectionist! I made sure my ink pad was refilled, and nice and juicy… maybe too juicy. The image was a little blurred. I’ll warn you that I find stamping on acetate or anything shiny reminds me of trying to sew slippery fabric. It will move. It’s inevitable! Don’t expect perfection! But do your best to expect movement when you’re stamping liquid ink onto a slippery paper. Use a stamping platform if you can. Be deliberate with your stamping. Make sure your stamp has good ink coverage, but not too much, before you stamp.

The Happy Birthday shaker pane cover was pretty good, so I was going to use it. When I put some sequins in the shaker, I decided that you couldn’t really see the impecfections, but also, you couldn’t really see the sentiment anymore! I changed my mind about my design. I got a piece of white cardstock, stamped in black Versafine ink, embossed in detail clear embossing power, and put it behind the shaker pane. That’s better! That looks good to me!

I turned this quick shaker card, made incredibly easy by the Sizzix Shaker Panes, into a long, drawn out learning experience! But hey, that’s what it’s about some times. You need to experiment to see what works for you, in your environment, with your products. I’ll definitely pick up a StayzOn reinker, and more clear acetate to practice on. I also will get some cling stamp backing foam so I can replace the wood block for this stamp, and turn it into a cling stamp. This will let me use it with my Misti stamping platform.

Thanks for stopping by my blog. Stay crafty!

Scrappy Shak products used:
Spellbinders Simply Perfect Layered Blooms
Sizzix Shaker Panes – Circle
Sizzix Framelits Circle Frames

Color Challenge Get Well Card

The inspiration for this card was a color challenge on a Facebook group I belong to. Someone posted a picture of a cream and black building with a red, orange a yellow logo. When I started thinking about what direction to go with this card, the colors took me to flowers. But most everything takes me to flowers! I also wanted to incorporate the industrial feeling of the building. I also needed a Get Well card!

I had just seen an amazing looking embossing folder, again on social media, and ordered one. It’s from Stampin’ Up, and called Painted Texture. It is even more fantastic in real life! I’m so glad I got it. I really like the whole mixed media aspect of card making, and this folder makes it super easy to get great texture. I haven’t played around yet with adding color to it, but I really just like it as is. I’m going to use this as the background for my card. In hindsight I should have made a larger card, because I hated having to cut this down and lose some of the character.

I chose some colors to work with: Mustard Seed, Orange Marmalade, and Festive Berries in the Distress Oxide ink pads. I blended them on a scrap piece of paper, and decided I wanted a more orangy red, so I picked Barn Door. I only have that in the Distress Ink pad, but it won’t matter much because I plan on using my blending brushes to apply color to my cardstock. For this card, I’m using Canson XL watercolor paper, even though I’m not using water. I like the weight of it, and that it is not as bright white as the Tim Holtz watercolor cardstock. Plus, I think it’s less expensive. I used it when I’m not using a lot of water to move the ink around.

I used the Tim Holtz Brushstroke Flowers #4 dies, cutting them out of the Canson watercolor cardstock. I thought it would be more interesting to blend the colors from lighter to darker on each flower layers, keeping the center of the flower lighter, and having more color towards the outside of the flowers. I used the packaging photo to help decide how to color the layers before gluing them together.

I chose to go with an A2 sized card. After trimming the background, I decided to add a layer of black behind my embossed background layer. This will help to connect the sentiment. The sentiment and sub sentiment are from Waffle Flower, Oversized Prayers. I used the smaller script prayers stamp, embossed with black, and cut out with the coordinating die. The sub sentiment was embossed with white on glossy black card stock. After I got all of my pieces ready and started to lay out the design, I decided I needed a bit more foliage, so I cut another stem and blended it with Mowed Lawn and Rustic WIlderness, like the others. I applied the yellow flower and greens directly to the background with liquid glue, and used thin and thick foam squares for the orange-red flower and sentiments.

I really like how this card came out. I hope it brings lots of good healing energy to the recipient! Thanks for stopping by!

PinkFresh Studio Background

Hello fellow paper lovers! Today I made this card for the Simon Says Stamp Wednesday Challenge. The theme was to make your own background, preferrably using PinkFresh Studio products. Since I only have one PinkFresh stamp so far, the choice was pretty clear!

My idea was to loosely color the flowers on this Folk Garden stamp with sprays. I started with TH watercolor paper on the smooth side, and stamped the Folk Garden stamp using my Misti with VersaMark embossing ink. Unfortunately it seems like it wasn’t completely ink free from the last time I used it, and it didn’t stamp clear. There was a bit of a slight gray, because I had previously used an archival black on it I think. So, instead of embossing with clear, like I planned, I embossed with an opaque white powder that I had in my stash. It came out okay, but definitely on the grungy side, so the idea for the rest of the card shifted a little.

I still used sprays, but just colored the flowers in the vicinity of where they were stamped. First I misted the watercolor cardstock, then used picked raspberry oxiede and seedless preserves spray stain. Why did I use both an oxide and a spray stain? Because that’s what I had in the colors I wanted! I heat set them a little with my heat tool, then added shabby shutters oxide spray, and that’s where the magic began! I love how that color is one of those that separates out a little. There’s some blue green, and yellow. Really fabulous! Another spritz of water, and then moved the paper around a little to get it to blend a little, but avoiding making mud with the help of a paper towel mopping up spots that started to get less then pretty. Then I heatset the whole background. I added a little text for interest here and there, using frayed burlap distress ink, and the script text from my Tim Holtz Entomology set, CMS328. I like small size of that script font. To finish it up, I added splatters of white gouache and seedless preserves with my fan brush, drying between colors.

I was really happy with the way the background came out. I didn’t want to detract too much from it, so I thought just a nice, small, thin sentiment would be great. Yana’s Layered Script Sentiments from Spellbinders came to mind. I quickly colored and dried a piece of watercolor paper, using seedless preserves spray stain. I die cut the word “Thanks”, and three shadows in white heavystock cardstock (to layer for some depth). I didn’t take any in-process photos, because this was just a “fun for me thing”! I hope my directions are clear enough for you to follow along! I added three gold confetti sequins, and called it done! Thanks for stopping by!

ScrappyShak Design Team! Sizzix Shaker Panes!

I am absolutely thrilled to announce that I have been selected to participate in the very first Design Team for ScrappyShak! I have the honor of working with the owner, Melanie, and a fabulous and talented group of women. You can check out the whole Design Team here. This is my first experience being part of a design team, and I hope that I can inspire just one more person to take a leap of faith into letting their artistic juices start to flow! I feel like I’m relatively new to this arena, and would like to honestly share my journey, complete with successes, failures, and tips I’ve picked up along the way. I’m excited to expand my repertoire beyond the world of Tim Holtz, but you’ll probably see a lot of his products here as I continue to discover other brands and styles. I would love to hear your feedback, so please feel free to leave a comment or drop me an email.

The first assignment for the Design Team was to use the Sizzix Shaker Panes line, products 665451 (hearts), 665448 (circles), and 665452 (squares). There are really neat framelit dies available that are sized to work with these sets, products 665661 (hearts), 665660 (circles), and 665662 (squares). There are three different sizes in each set, so you can be sure to find one that fits your project. The framelits make these so easy to use! I took the photo below after I had used one of each shape, but they do come with three different sizes in each package. They are currently available at ScrappyShak. If you click through on any of the product links, I will earn a small commission from your purchase, at no additional cost to you. I appreciate your support. Everything I earn will be used to support my ability to continue to create and share with you!

The shaker panes have adhesive on both sides, and Sizzix includes a heat resistant acetate top sheet that you can emboss on! Don’t forget to remove the protective film that keeps the top sheet clean and scratch free until you’re ready to use it, and make sure to remove any cat or dog hairs before you seal up your shaker pane! (speaking from experience).

We were told that we could use either of the shapes in our design. After I had gone down the “square” road, I was thinking, “I have a great idea for the circle”! Well, then of course I felt I needed to do something with the heart, not wanting the heart to feel left out. That would just be sad. I’ll have to say, hearts aren’t my favorite shape. It’s probably and old counterproductive brain pattern from an ex-boyfriend in high school, but by now I was determined to use all three shapes, including the heart.

I started by choosing a die to work with, Tim Holtz’s Brushstroke Butterflies. Then I picked a bunch of colors I thought would go together: Saltwater Taffy, Orange Marmalade, and Fossilized Amber. I used the smoosh – dry – smoosh – dry – repeat technique on my craft mat with Distress watercolor cardstock to create some colored paper to work with.

I cut out my butterflies, then decided I was a little too heavy handed on my smooshing and coloring with the Saltwater Taffy. I went a little lighter on a new piece of paper, and added some Scattered Straw, and was happier with that. I saved my extra colored paper panels, and ended up using them later on the heart shaker card. Sometimes it takes me a bit to figure out colors, but I usually save the paper that I don’t end up using on the current project for something else. If they sit on my desk for too long, they usually end up in the “circular file”, but hey, it’s only paper! This time it worked out great, because as I went along, I decided to use the same general design and colors for each of the three cards that I ended up making for this project, so I pretty much used up all my extras. Here’s a great resource for you: My new crafty friend and fellow Design Team member, Tracy Fear, created a color wheel for the Distress colors! You can visit her account on Etsy and get one!

After I put my butterflies together, I moved on to thinking about the card front background. When I layed out the butterfles and the medium square shaker pane, I thought it would look better as a 5×7 card, as opposed to an A2 sized card, which I usually make. I tried both the large and the small shaker panes as well, but the medium size let me fit the butterflies where I wanted them on the 5×7 sized card. I wanted to add something to the background for interest and balance, but I didn’t want it to overshadow the butterflies or the shaker element. I thought dry embossing on white cardstock would be nice, but I didn’t have any embossing folders or stencils that would work on a 5×7 card. So I started with a piece of Distress watercolor paper, cut down to 4.75×6.75, so I could layer it against a solid color card base, and house the shaker pane in between. Here’s something I might have done differntly – I tend to layer my card front with 1/8 inch, all the way around. This works out great, in my opinion, on an A2 card. I don’t make as many 5×7 cards. This 1/8 inch border just felt a little too narrow for me. Next time, I might layer with a 1/4 inch edge. I’ll definitely try both. But I didn’t figure this out until I was done with the second card, and figured I would just go with it! We are our own biggest critics!

Looking through my stamps, I decided to use the new Floral Elements stamp (CMS445). I picked out all of the leafy stamps, and used my Misti stamp platform to stamp the smooth side of my cardstock with Twisted Citron. Since it was looking kinda sparse, I used a couple of my favorite stamps from that set to fill in where I wanted more elements, using an acrylic block to stamp more leaf images.

I thought about lightly spritzing this with water before I stamped, but I chose not to, because I wasn’t sure I could get them to all look similar, with some being stamped with my Misti, and some by hand. When I made the circle Goldfish card with the Bubbles stamp, I did mist it very lightly with water before I stamped, and I just love how that one came out. When the background was how I wanted it, I played around with where I wanted to place my butterflies, shaker pane, and a sentiment. For the sentiments on all the cards, I chose the Noteworthy stamp set, CMS 446, and simply stamped the sentiment directly on to my background once I figured out where everything should go. Be sure to do all of your stamping before you add the shaker pane, otherwise it’s a lot more difficult to stamp. I hadn’t yet decided on a color to use for the body of the butterflies. I wanted something softer than black. I tried a couple different browns, and picked Brushed Corduroy, because it seemed to look good with the colors I was using. I decided to use Brushed Corduroy as the base layer for my card to tie it in more. The Brushed Corduroy was ink blended just around the outside of the base for the card, as I wanted it to be white behind the shaker pane window. I began thinking that a plain brown card base might be a bit too plain and brown, and not really go with the sparkly shaker element. I decided to add some gold splatter, using a very pretty Nuvo Mica Mist spray in Aspen Gold. I also added that to where the background of the shaker pane would be. Again, trying to connect the elements of the card so they feel like they belong. It’s like when someone makes a dish on Chopped, and the judges point out one of the basket ingredients is just thrown on the plate and not integrated into the dish. We don’t want that!

The easiest part of this card was adding the shaker element. The dies work perfectly to cut out a window for the shaker pane, and a frame to either highlight the shaker pane if you put the pane in the backside of your paper, or cover up the edge if you put your frame the frontside of your paper. You can do it either way; whatever seems to work for your design. I wanted the front of my card flat, so I could overlap the butterflies a little over the shaker window, so I put the shaker pane in back of my background, on top of my card base. Since the shaker pane is nice and beefy, you can add lots of shakety bits, beads, and charms. I went through my stash to pick colors that would match. I thought about putting something else in the shaker pane, but I didn’t have anything on hand. I used a combination of sequins and small beads, most of which were painstakingly chosen, one by one, because that’s how I roll!

I used Bearly Art Precision Craft Glue with a precision tip to glue on the shaker pane frame and butterflies. The shaker pane comes with it’s own adhesive – just pull off the backing and you’re good to go. It couldn’t be easier. To layer the front of the card onto the base, I used Scrapbook Adhesive double sided tape roll. Since the shaker is 1/8 inch thick, you need to use two layers of the mounting tape. Supposedly, the easy way to do this is to measure or eyeball how much tape you need, then fold it over on itself, sticky side to sticky side, to get an even double layer of tape, then cut it off the roll. It worked better for me to make two shorter pieces for the long sides of the card, instead of one long piece. It was easier to handle. I might go back to putting one layer of mounting tape down perfectly, then adding the second layer of tape on top of that. Folding the tape on itself is not very forgiving, and kind of awkward. Oh, and no, I don’t do my nails like a lot of the people who blog about cards. I have chickens, and I like to do outdoorsy things, and play in the dirt.

My favorite way to attach a base to a blank card is to use my Scotch ATG 700 tape runner, back from the olden days of scrapbooking. I just love that tool. I’m sure the newer tape runners are more affordable, but that thing just feels right in my hand! Here’s the finished card. I hope you heard me say how easy these shaker panes from Sizzix are to use!

Sizzix Shaker Panes 665452, Brushstroke Butterflies, Floral Elements

Here are the other two cards I made for this project. I used the Sizzix circle Shaker Pane with a stamp and die set from Altenew (Goldfish Pond), along with the amazing new Stamper’s Anonymous Tim Holtz Bubbles (CMS449). I used the same process as described above, using Saltwater Taffy and Twisted Citron for the lilypads, Orange Marmalade, Ripe Persimmon, Fossilized Amber for the fish, and Tumbled Glass for the background and frame. The sentiment from Noteworthy was stamped with Prize Ribbon. For the last card using the heart shaker pane, I used Spellbinder’s Simply Perfect Layered Blooms. No, it’s not perfect! Much patience was needed to put together the tiny little pieces with these old eyes, but I did use up all of my leftover papers. The background is stamped with Altenew’s Pattern Play Diamond set. Thanks again for stopping by, and please come back soon. I appreciate you!

Snarky Cat the Artist(e)

Hello fellow paper lovers! Thank you for stopping by my inaugural blog post! Comments and feedback are welcome and appreciated! Today I’d like to share with you a card that I designed for the Simon Says Stamp Wednesday Challenge. The suggested theme was to use RIley and Company products, but I don’t have any, yet! I saw that they tend to have snarkiness and whimsy, so I chose to use my Tim Holtz Snarky Cats. This guy jumped out at me. I also wanted to use the new Tim Holtz Noteworthy stamp set from Stampers Anonymous. I wanted to have my cat doing something a little crazy, or with a wacky color combination.

I had recently watched a technique video by Nicole Watt Creates. It’s a background technique that she calls “Pollock Style Splatter“. I love how Nicole is so warm and authentic in her video tutorials, and how she does a lot of them in real time. You should definitely check her out.

My supply of sprays is limited, so I used what I had… Tim Holtz Distress Spray Stains and Oxides in Festive Berries, Dusty Concord, Spun Sugar, and Carved Pumpkin to match the little bit of orange in my cat. There’s something about orange cats that scream snark, in cartoons and in real life! I used Canson XL watercolor paper for the background.

With the background done, I stamped my cat in Ranger Archival Jet Black onto Neenah Classic Crest Solar White, 110 lb. paper. I stamped it twice using my Misti platform, as I knew I was going to be embossing it, and I wanted to make sure it was wet enough to hold the powder. I like to emboss images if I’m going to be coloring them with markers, because I’m not great at coloring, and it seems to help keep me in the lines! I embossed using some detail clear embossing powder from my stash.

My cat was colored with Copic Sketch markers, but I didn’t take note of the numbers…a couple earth tones, and an orange that seemed to match the Carved Pumkin. I stamped a couple brushes from the Tim Holtz Crazy Things set, and colored them with Copics as well. I’m fortunate to have both sets of framelit dies for the Snarky Cats and Crazy Things, so I used those to diecut my images.

Finishing the card, I decided to use Kraft cardstock as the card base, again from Tim Holtz. That helped me to decide to use Kraft for the sentiment strips. Instead of wasting a sheet of heavyweight Kraft, I stamped the sentiments on the back of a piece of colored kraft cardstock from my scrap bin, using the same black Archival ink and clear emobossing powder. I inked the edged of the sentiment strips with a little Black Soot, and then decided to help my background stand out by layering it on some black cardstock from my stash. The cat, brushes, and sentiment strips were popped up on foam mounting squares. I added a couple lines with a black journaling pen to try to show movement, but they just seem to blend in with the background. Thanks for stopping by! Have a snarky day, but not too snarky!