Inky Play Friday – Distress Oxide and Stencils

It’s Friday and it’s time to get my fingers dirty! I have these new stencils I wanted to try. The idea is that they can speed up the coloring time for those who don’t want to go the Copic coloring with stamps option. The first thing I realized is that I needed to figure out what order the colors should lay down since it’s a three-stencil process to produce a multi-colored ornament.

I also needed to figure out which colors go well together. So it was a lot of trial and error. On this first one I laid the green down first and then purple and then I put the green on top. Because the green is sort of neon and bright, it managed to show up on the final layer. I will need to play around more to get different results.

I still liked the results but was anxious to try the other ornaments. I have been loving this purple and I like how it almost look like it was glowing on the edges because the color was lighter on the edges. Unfortunately, you don’t get to see that much because the next two layers cover the edges.

I stopped after filling the page with ornaments so I can see how they look when they are diecut. The result is the first picture you saw at the start of this post. I like how they feel in my hands and the die also debosses areas on the ornament. I really like how they look once I cut them out.

After doing this batch, I think the next time, I will do a batch of all the same base colors and then assembly line add color two and then the final stencil. I think that will make it faster. I will also need to look closely at the Distress Oxide colors that I own to come up with more color combinations.

We are having torrential downpours today and I think my coloring books are calling me. So I am going to say goodbye for now!

Have a wonderful weekend!

Product Play – Christmas stamps and dies

Hello! I am finally starting to dig into my new Christmas crafts stash to play. I like what I have seen online so now I get the opportunity to try this new stamp and die set out. I liked this one because the ornaments are a nice size and the stamps came with coordinating dies. I also bought the stencil version but I will leave that for Friday when I usually play around with inks.

Today I would like to focus on the stamps and coordinating dies. I have a love-hate relationship with coordinating dies. For some things like sentiments, I think they are quite easy to use but I still find it to be a little bit of guessing when it comes to lining up the die with the stamped image.

I stamped some in black ink to use with my Copics and then I pulled out the red, silver, gold, and holographic embossing powders. I stamped and then heat embossed them. I have to say the sliver and gold really make me happy and although I had high hopes for the holographic, it didn’t melt the same. I may give it another try to see if I can get better results.

I then fumbled around and diecut them to the best of my ability. The day got away from me so I will have to color and attach them to cards later this week.

Have a lovely day!

Good Morning Monday – Handling mundane tasks

Good morning! The clocks have changed and I’m all messed up with the rest of the poor souls that must adjust to the daylight savings arrangement. Yesterday I started yawning at 6:30 and at 7 pm I felt like I was ready for bed!!! It gets dark by 5 and I feel very rushed. But enough about that, today is gorgeous. It is so bright and sunny and the temperature is rising as I type.

Running an Etsy shop is a lot of fun but there are tasks that are a little less glamorous. Today is one of those days, in which I am working on creating more card bases for new cards. As a one-person shop, I learned a long time ago that in order to speed up my production, I have to create systems that support the process of creation. One of those tasks that make the process run more smoothly is creating card bases in batches. So I will dedicate an hour or so to cutting high-quality cardstock and scoring them in preparation for cardmaking.

As we are fast-moving towards the winter holiday season, I decided I would like to put a few Christmas and winter-themed cards in my shop. Ordinarily, I would have all of them completed by now and would be marketing them on social media. However, this being my first year back, I am unfortunately behind which means I probably won’t capture the holiday sales as I would like.

I am always surprised by the joy I continue to have learning new techniques and buying new products and I realize that first and foremost, I am a crafter and that I still enjoy creating with my hands just for the fun of it. Despite the boatload of Christmas-themed stamps and products I currently own, I did manage to do a little shopping. This pile of new goodies is waiting for me to play with them before I commit some to new cards. So I am keeping the pile on the corner of my desk as I work on the card bases almost as an incentive.

One thing that I like to do when doing something that can be a bit monotonous such as cutting, scoring, and folding cards, is to listen to a good audiobook. It makes the time go by so quickly and I get some reading time in. Today, I am starting a new book by the incredible Stacey Abrams. It’s a legal thriller and I own the book but also have the audiobook for those hands-free moments like this.

I hope you are having a lovely Monday!

Inky Play Friday – Playin’ with my Copics!

Happy Inky Play Friday! I set my distress inks aside for a Copic coloring session. I have this fantastic stamp of a grouping of pumpkins that I bought earlier this year. Autumn makes me think of fluffy blankets, beautiful tea mugs, and pumpkins. We used to carve pumpkins when my boys were younger but as they have lost interest, I moved on to baking with pumpkins. I have a yummy pumpkin cookie recipe that totally fills the house with an amazing aroma.

After stamping the images and letting them dry, I went on my Silhouette and designed then print and cut the sentiments so I can use these on some cards. I printed it in a couple of different colors so that I could have options.

I love finding color combinations for things in nature. I went onto Pinterest to look for pumpkin pictures and to see what color combinations I could find before coloring them. The contrast in this inky play versus the distress inks is so pronounced. When I use the distress inks there is less precision and a lot of random results but with my Copics, I can control the color better. Some days it’s nice to have more control but I am loving stretching my comfort zone with less predictable mediums.

Next, I used a really cool leaf embossing folder to create a dimensional backdrop for the pumpkin display. I decided to create them in a couple of different colors to see how it changes the mood of the cards.

I used my dimensional dots to raise the pumpkin image on the front of the card. They are so much fun to use and they really made the image pop.

I am going to continue to color some more today and try out the different backgrounds.

Have a wonderful weekend!

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