Thursday, July 28, 2011

Dreamweaver Free Week--My CHA Badge

Three years ago, the store that I work at was about to open its doors. Sadly, it is about to close, exactly three years from its opening date. I will never forget all the buzz that was generated by my new bosses, fresh off of their first CHA (Craft and Hobby Association Conference). They were back with stories about fantastic new products, exciting ideas and enthusiasm to spare. I remember how they hung the badge holders that they had recieved from Crafters' Home over their respective desks. To me, those badge holders represented excitement. Indeed, ever since my first CHA, I had been thinking about making myself a badge holder. Once I became part of the Dreamweaver Design Team, I knew exactly what I would make it out of.It took me some time to decide which techniques to use on my Dreamweaver CHA Badge holder. I wound up with four different materials and five different techniques.First, I sprayed a 5 1/2" x 10" piece of Claudine Helmuth Sticky Backed Canvas with Adirondack Color Wash in Stream. I let that dry before I pasted, starting about about 1" down from the top with Translucent Paste and the LJ 901 Mosaic Swirls stencil. After that dried, I used a little bit of Black Soot Distress inks around the sides of the paste. When that was dry, I cut a roughly 3 3/4" by 2 3/4" square from the center of the pasting.
In case you are interested in the assembly, I lined the inside with a cotton fabric placed on the sticky backed canvas, leaving about 1/2" on each side to stick to the edging of the back piece. I evenly spaced five eyelets under the pasted portion. Then, I folded the back up so that the edges met the edges of the top, sticking the front to the back, and making the pouch with an approximate 1" flap on the front top portion. I then ran the LJ 901 stencil with Lifestyle Crafts Sticky Backed Metal through my Cuttlebug, colored it with Alcohol Inks and sanded it. I put it on the back side of the pouch to reinforce it a little. I used bias tape and a really horrible hand stitching to encase the raw, stuck together edges. Then, I inserted two eyelets on the top.

The beading was created with blue wire and some beads. I also created a couple of charms. They were made with Dreamweaver Stencils LS6 Scallop and LS 71 Small Conch. I put a little vegetable oil on the back of the stencils and pressed them lightly into flattened dark blue polymer clay. Then, they were rolled down with a brayer until the clay extended just a little over the stencil. I dipped my finger in Moonstone Metallic FX and lightly rubbed it into the clay with the stencil still in place. Then, I added just a little shading with my finger and the Metallic FX in Cocoa. Lastly, I peeled the clay from the stencil, trimmed and gently shaped it with my finger, added two holes, and baked it according to the instructions on the label.

The metal pieces were really interesting. They were made in two similar, but different ways: metal embossing and debossing. The seahorse LM 181 (in pink covered aluminum) and the turtle LM 179 (in green aluminum) were embossed with the Mercart Metal Embossing kit. Using the same kit and brown coated aluminum, I debossed the sand dollar LR 12. The difference lies in where you hold the stencil and the relative placement of the metal. For the embossing, I placed the stencil face down on my table and put the metal over the top of it, pushing it into the holes on the stencil. Then, I removed the stencil, flipped over the image and sanded it lightly. For the debossing, I laid my stencil face up, and put my metal over the top, pushing into the crevices. Then, I "poufed" up the metal around the outside and sanded it. The metal colors show in the portion that is the furthest back. All three of the metal pieces were filled in the back with the Mercart filler.

Now, on to the fun Shrink Plastic Charms. I used the matte finish Shrinky Dinks. I sanded the area that I was planning to use. Then, I covered it with Adirondack Snow Cap Pigment Ink. When it dried, I taped the stencils LM 181 Seahorse, LM 179 Sea Turtle, LR 12 Sand Dollar, LL 371 Humu Humu and LL 372 Kihi Kihi down and, using Adorondack Pigment ink, I colored the images. I cut around the outside of them and punched holes in the top with the largest hole punch on my Big Bite. Finally, I shrunk them with my Heat It tool.
I had so much fun creating this badge holder, and even more fun wearing it at CHA. I wanted to show it to everyone this week to bring my excitement from CHA to you, just the way my bosses did three years ago. I also wanted to show you something that wasn't a card. I realize that you may never make or need a badge holder, but Dreamweaver Stencils can be used to create anything. I hope you get inspired by what I did, or by what a team mate has done. If you do, leave a comment. Then create something and link it to the Dreamweaver Blog. We would love to see it. Inspire us!

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Dreamweaver (sort of) Monochromatic Challenge

This week's challenge is monochromatic. This card that I made for Lynell fits the theme (almost). The grayish wood looking paper is not technically part of the blue monochromatic scheme, but I think you will forgive me.
So, have you noticed the two new stencils? The skates are new and are simply pasted with white glossy paste. The background is also a new stencil, which I think Lynell is calling "hills". When I saw it, I knew right away that I would be using it this way. The openings are perfect for Zentangles. I did this Zentangling with the Ranger Inkssentials Opaque White gel pen.
The Winter stencil was pasted with glossy white paste as well. Both Winter and the skates were put on the card with 3D Dots. The brad was added to make the skates look as if they are hanging just inside the windowed door, waiting to be taken out on a glorious winter day.
This was a simple one, but so much fun to create. Thanks for stopping by today, to check out our challenge, the new stencils and a little bit of cool winter on this toasty summer day. I hope you enjoyed it all. Check out the other Dreamweaver Team Blogs, leave a little love, get inspired, and make a monochromatic (or sort of monochromatic) project yourself. Then, you should link it to the Dreamweaver Blog. We would love to see your projects, too.

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Dream Scheme Sketch Week

This is the sketch for the week. I followed it very closely, and used three different techniques: paste, metals and shrink plastic.
The paste technique was pretty straightforward. It is done with the original paste. I used LL 403 Live, Laugh, Love. This stencil is actually a small set of three stencils in a ovals. I knew that I wanted to use the oval to follow the sketch. Due to the casual nature of the card, I made the decision that I wanted the paste to lap over the outside of the oval. Using the regular taping method, it would be impossible to get that paste to completely surround the oval, being that there would be tape blocking it. I tried something new for me and attached the stencil with double sided adhesive tape. I would NOT recommend this technique for everyday use. It has a high probablity of damaging your stencil. I only tried it here because it was a smaller stencil that had very small openings compared to the amount of the metal. I was very careful to remove the paper from the stencil, instead of pulling the stencil off of the paper. I suspect that I was also a little lucky not to have bent the stencil.
For the metal portion, I used the Beach Chair Stencil LL 329. The metal is actually aluminum covered with a copper color. I used Mercart Metals basic tools to push the metal through the stencil. I just love using metals and now that I have some tools, it is so easy. It is sort of like traditional embossing. Anyway, I purposely added some lines inside the chair, as you can see here, so that it would look more like wood grain. In the upper corner of this photo, you can see that the metal work on the umbrella is much smoother. After the embossing was done, I sanded the metal to expose the aluminum color underneath.

When I attached this metal, I wanted to use some sort of non-adhesive connection to back up the typical adhesion, as metal is heavy. This is why I used my Big Bite to add holes and some Scrappers' Floss.

My last technique on this card is the use of Shrink Plastic. For this card, I used clear plastic. I scruffed it up with my sanding block before adding the stencils. I then used Adirondack Pigment Ink in Snow Cap all over the plastic that I was using for the shell (stencil LM 267) and sand dollar (stencil LR 12). I used Distress Ink in Tea Dye behind the Starfish LM 209.

I then used both Distress Inks (Worn Lipstick, Walnut Stain, Weathered Wood) and Adirondack Pigment Inks (Mushroom, Snow Cap) with small stencil brushes to stencil in all the colors. I removed the stencils and cut around the images. I added the holes with the large setting of my Big Bite. You have to use the large setting, as the smaller holes would completely disappear when you heated them. Then, I used my Ranger Heat It tool to "shrink" the images. I attached them with scrappers' floss.

The paper that I used was by Creative Imaginations. I was pretty happy with my results on this one. Although I sort of dreaded this sketch initially because of all of the activity on it, I really enjoyed it once I started working on it. You should give this sketch a try, too. Once you do, be sure to link it (or email the image) to the Dreamweaver Stencil blog. Maybe you will see your project highlighted in future weeks. Meanwhile, check out all the variations of this sketch on the blogs of my fellow teammates (listed on the left side of this page.) Leave some comments if you can (we all like comments). Get inspired and inspire others. Oh--and check back next week for a reveal of two of the brand new stencils!

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Dreamweaver Free Week--A Shower of Blessings

In this season of weddings, and (at least for my friends) babies, I thought it would be appropriate to show a cute little shower card. Here it is:I used four beautiful Dreamweaver stencils on this card: LJ 905 Rain, LJ 909 Cathedral Windows Small, LG737 Umbrella, and LG 737 Rain Words.

To start, I taped (with removable tape) the umbrella on the light blue shimmery paper backwards. This means that I could not read the stencil name when I looked down. I did this because I wanted that horseshoe shape in the handle to be facing up. Anyway, I pasted this with the original Dreamweaver Paste. I also pasted the Showers of Blessings words by taping off the nearby phrases and attaching it to the dark blue shimmery paper. By the way, these gorgeous, shimmery papers are by Wausau Papers.

While the paste dried, I set up my next step by creating a mask. I used the Inkadinkadoo Masking paper. I traced the stencil (backwards, again) onto the masking paper with an ordinary pen and cut it out around the outside of the image.

Then, I removed the backing paper and positioned the mask where I wanted to put the umbrella. You may wonder why I needed a mask at all. Well, I knew that I was going to be using paste on those raindrops, and I didn't want that raised effect under the umbrella.

Also, I started thinking around this time that I did not want any rain to show under where the umbrella is sitting, so I needed to mask out that area as well. It wasn't quite as critical that I have it precise, so I just took enough of the scrap masking paper and set it under the umbrella like it is in this picture.

Then, I was ready to paste the raindrops. I used Pearlescent paste and sprinkled Art Glitter Ultrafine Transparent #145 Blue Boy on top while the paste was still wet. (Ironically, the same color I used for my guest post, which is up this week on the Art Glitter Blog).

While that dried, I went back to my umbrella. First, I replaced the stencil, and covered it with the Cathedral Windows stencil. I used my Versamark Pad on top of the paste and then covered it with white embossing powder. If you are the type who needs this to be extremely precise, you should probably use a stencil brush to stencil it with white pigment ink and use clear embossing powder instead. Because I was using white on white, I wasn't too worried about precision. I only wanted it to have some sort o texture to the umbrella. Anyway, after removing both stencils, you should heat set the embossing powder. Then, replace the umbrella stencil and use the Versamarker Pen on the parts that you want silver. I did the handle, the tip and the ends of the spokes. Emboss these with the silver powder. Then, I trimmed the umbrella very close all the way around.

When the raindrop paste was dry, I brushed off the excess glitter and removed the mask. I adhered the umbrella in its spot. I used a Crop-A-Dile to punch holes on either side of the handle, and inserted the ribbon, which I tied into a bow. Then, I punched out a bunch of small flowers. I adhered them, some Hero Arts Flower Gems and some small pearls to the bottoms of the raindrops. I assembled the rest of the card and Viola! I was done.

This card turned out just the way I wanted it to. It was inspired by the kinds of cards and the lacy decorative umbrellas that were all the rage many years ago, when I got married. Inspiration, indeed, comes from many things. I am hoping that you are inspired today to make your own Dreamweaver card. Then, you can link it to the Dreamweaver Blog. Don't be shy! Show us what you've got!

Look at the other Dream Team Blogs (linked on the side) if you need a little more inspiration. Ah, even if you are already inspired, look anyway. Make a comment or two--inspire us back!

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Blog Hop Winners

Time to announce the winners from our fabulous Summer/4th of July blog hop! If your name is listed below, go to Taylor Ursy's blog at to email her. Please put Blog Hop Winner in the subject line, and be sure to let her know what you won. If you get to choose your stamps/images, let her know which ones you want! Also, include your mailing address if necessary. All prizes will be distributed by the company or donor, so she needs your info to pass on to them.

You have one week to claim your prize...if she hasn't heard from you by Friday, July 15th she'll draw another name and give your prize away!

Jan Garber - Stampendous Cling Jumbo flower and handle (will be chosen by Stampendous)

Crystal Irwin - Stampendous Cling Jumbo flower and handle (will be chosen by Stampendous)

LUV2SCRAP - Karber Digital Studios - 2 digis of your choice

Alison Heikkila - Dreamweavers Stencils prize pack

Chris - Ippity Kit, courtesy of Maria Levine (will be chosen by Maria)

Jan-Marie - a muse studio catalog and stamp set of your choice ($12.99 or under), courtesy of Sunghee Chon

Jessica Diedrich - Stampendous Cling Jumbo flower and handle (will be chosen by Stampendous)

Mousekmom - Chi Chi Memories digi stamp set of your choice

Lillian Child - Ellie Loves the Beach stamp from Your Next Stamp

Martha (Sissy) Speed Ramey - Skipping Stones Design stamp set (of their choosing)

Jennifer Ingle - $20 gift certificate to Little Potato House, courtesy of Sunghee Chon

Rachel - Pixie Dust Studio - 2 digis of your choice

Corinne - SU Fast and Fabulous set, courtesy of Cindy Coutts and Christian Paper Crafts

Thanks so much for all of the wonderful comments on all of the blog hop stops!!! We had so much fun :)

Friday, July 1, 2011

July Fourth BLOG HOP

Welcome to the fantastic July Fourth Blog Hop. We have thirteen (like the original colonies) opportunties to win great prizes, but more about that later. First, here is my card for the day:

Here are the steps I used:

1) I soaped up the back of the Fireworks stencil LJ 886 and attached it, soap side down, to the Double Sided Adhesive Paper.

2) Using Art Glitter, including Holographic Glitter, in red and gold I filled the inside of the fireworks.

3) I removed the paper from the stencil and covered it with black glitter.

4) Using the flag stencil, LL 359, and colored metal in red, blue and gold, I embossed and debossed the flag. Embossing is what we think of as traditional, pressing into the stencil from the back, and creating a raised area in the metal. I did this with the stars. Debossing is pushing the metal in the opposite direction, making a different look. This was used on the stripes and the pole. I tried to make sure that the metal was pushed all the way down to prevent it from being sanded. I did this with Mercart's teflon ended tool.

5) I lightly sanded the metal. Then, I used the Mercart fiberglass tool to remove all the color over the areas that needed to be more silvery--the white stripes and the stars.

6) Until this point, the metal pieces were all seperate by color. Now, I trimmed each piece as close as I could and pieced them together on a some Double Sided Adhesive Paper. I popped this up and mounted it onto the glittered background.

7) I used a stamp by Northwoods for the sentiment with Archival Ink. I trimmed it and distressed it.

8) I assembled the card. White on blue, glitter on white, felt ribbon on glitter and sentiment on felt ribbon. A couple of blue gems, and I am DONE.

Now, you should leave a comment for a chance to win some great prizes. Then, hop off to Lee Kellog's blog at for the next step. If you get confused, or are hopping out of order (NEVER!) here is a list of all the participants:

Taylor --
Cyndi --
Lynn --
Patricia --
Alison --
Berenice --
Erica --
Mary --
Janelle --
Erin --
Maria --
Jennifer D --
Pam --
Angelique --
Sandie --
Wendy P --
Suzi --
Kathy --
Beth --
Wendy J --
Kerry --
Louise -
Liz --
Laura -
Lee --
Jennifer I --
Krissy -
Sunghee --
Cindy -

If you get lost, start again at Taylor's blog. She really DOES have all the answers. She also got some generous sponsors to donate prizes. They are:

Stampendous - - (3 Cling Jumbo Flowers plus a handle - 3 prizes total) they are giving away: one Cling Jumbo Tulip set ( ), one Cling Jumbo Tiger Lily set (, and one Cling Jumbo Dogwood set ( ) . Each set will come with a Jumbo Handle. ( )

Chi Chi Memories - - (digi stamp set of winner's choice)

Pixie Dust Studio - - 2 digi images of winner's choice (1 winner)

Dreamweaver's Stencils - - prize pack to 1 winner

Karber Digital Studio - - 2 digi images of winner's choice (1 winner)

Maria Levine - - Ippity Kit (1 winner)

Skipping Stones Design - - 1 clear stamp set of SSD's choosing (1 winner) --**as sooon as I know what the set is, I'll let you know)

Cindy Coutts/Christian Paper Crafts - - one SU stamp set - Fast & Fabulous -- US resident only (1 winner)

Sunghee Chon - - 1 a muse studio catalog + 1 stamp set of choice (Value equal or less than $12.99) for US resident only.

Sunghee Chon -- -- $20 gift certificates to Little Potato House template shop for US or non-US resident.

Karen from Your Next Stamp - would love to give away a stamp called Ellie loves The Beach

"You have until Tuesday, July 5th at 6:00 PM EST to comment on as many blogs as you can. Winners will be drawn from random comments on blogs, and announced on Wednesday July 7th (on Taylor's ( blog). "

Well, bye for now. Have a Happy Fourth of July