A blog devoted to the cards I make in my tiny upstairs space. When my sister stays there, she calls it an "artist's garret". I'm not an artist, but am an enthusiastic cardmaker - hence the title "Cardmaker's Garret".

Friday, 29 July 2016

Tessa Says Thank You!

My sweet little puppy, Tessa, has had lots of visitors and often they bring her toys or bones as a "new pup" gift.  So I needed to make some thank you cards.

This one is for a friend's kids who brought not just a toy for the puppy, but one for Will, my old dog too.

I stamped and fussy cut the pup and dog, did a background with brushos, and put it all together - the dogs' feet are taped to the background but there is foam tape behind their heads and bodies to give them some dimension.

The next one is for a friend who came over with bones for Tessa and Will.

And lastly, we needed to thank Loll Thompson who let me bring Tessa along to her house when Christine and I went out to make cards with Loll.  We were there for a whole day which is much too long to leave her at home alone.  I think my 12 year old dog, Will, was glad of a day at home on his own with no puppy pestering him!  Here's the card I made for Loll:

Tessa is growing quickly.  She's 90% adorable and 10% a little monster who gets into everything and wants to sink her sharp little teeth into me, Will, the furniture - I will be so glad when the doggy teething stage is over!  Here's a recent photo of her looking adorable:

Here she is, sitting with Will in the shade under a bush.  We have had a few hot sunny days.

Thanks for dropping in today to see cards and dogs!

Stamps - Raintree adult dog, Grey Wolf Graphics puppy, SU sentiment
Ink - ColorBox white, Distress Tea Dye, Memento Tuxedo Black
Paper - mixed media, white, and black cs, Canvas Corp dp
Size - A2
Accessories - blue and green brushos, white embossing powder, foam tape, banner die, Quikcutz embossing folder        

Monday, 25 July 2016

Inspired by a Bowl

I was able to combine a couple of SCS challenges in one card today.  The Inspiration Challenge gave us a Pinterest site of gorgeous pottery bowls to be inspired by, and the CAS Challenge was "Christmas in July".  I chose this pottery bowl for my inspiration:

Larsen, bowl:

It immediately made me think of alcohol inks on Yupo so I started playing around and tried to mimic the design on the bowl - way more difficult to do than I thought. But I ended up with some nice pieces, one of which I turned into this card:

The pointy shape of the bowl made me think of a Christmas ornament - perfect for the "Christmas in July" challenge.

It needed to be a CAS card so I had to leave lots of white space.  But I also needed some way to "hang" my ornament.  So I dry embossed a holly branch on white cs and attached the ornament with gold cord, and popped the ornament up on foam tape.

A simple sentiment and a border of shimmery green finished it off.

Thanks for dropping by today.

Stamps - Rubber Soul sentiment
Ink - Memento Bamboo Leaves
Paper - white cs, shimmery green cs, Yupo
Size - A2
Accessories - various green alcohol inks, gold mixative, Spellbinders ornament die, gold cord, Cuttlebug holly embossing folder, foam tape

Sunday, 17 July 2016

Frameworthy and Inspired

Two great challenges on SCS at the end of last week - Free for All "Frameworthy" (add a frame to your card) and Inspiration Challenge (be inspired by a floral image on a website called Petals).

For the first one I created this card:

A month or so ago, I was at Loll Thompson's house and she shared her aspen tree stencil and her stenciling with brushos technique. I came home with a few backgrounds and am finally getting around to using one.

It is definitely "frameworthy" as it's such a great (and easy) technique. To see Loll's video tutorial on how to do it, go to this link.  I was totally inspired by this card of Loll's.

I added a die cut reindeer, a heat embossed sentiment, and a die cut pierced frame, and mounted it on a rustic cs base.

For the Inspiration Challenge, as soon as I saw this image in the wreath section of the Petals website, I knew what I wanted to make.  Here is my card:

I punched lots of pine brunches out of various green dps (usually with grass patterns on them) and glued them to a circle cut with two Nesties dies. Added red gemstones for berries.

The wall is made with white embossing paste through a brick stencil on grey cs. I popped it up on fun foam for some dimension and added a die cut sentiment.

Christine and I were at Loll's for another crafty get-together on Saturday and I came home with several great pieces just needing to be turned into cards - I'll be back soon with some of them.

Supplies for the first card:
Stamps: Rubber Soul sentiment 
Paper: mixed media, black and brown cs, PTI Rustic cs
Ink: Colorbox White
Accessories: Dee's Distinctively reindeer die, pierced frame die, white embossing powder, black brushos, TCW aspen trees stencil  
Supplies for the second card:
Paper: white, red, and grey cs; various green dp
Accessories: Martha Stewart pine branch punch, Nesties circle dies, red gemstones, Tim Holtz brick wall stencil, Dreamweaver white embossing paste, Tattered Lace sentiment die, fun foam  

Friday, 15 July 2016

Swallowtail Coloured Three Ways

I was at my Stampin' Up rep's catalogue release party last weekend and she offered a great deal on retired stamps so I picked up the very large Swallowtail stamp - I've always admired cards made with it but was never sure how I'd use it.  So I bought it and decided to use it right away, and experiment with inking it up with three different mediums (other than straightforward ink).

This first one uses markers so I'm putting it in as my reminder card for the CAS Mix Up Design Team, since this month's challenge is markers.

For my July 1st CAS Mix UpDesign Team card here, I inked up my stamp with markers and then stamped immediately.  For this card, I inked up with Tombow markers and then spritzed with water to get a soft watercolour look.

I used my MISTI to make sure I got it stamped well.  I made a mask of the stamp and covered my image and splattered some brown watered down Vintage Photo ink.

I trimmed it down to a square and added a very narrow brown border and the white heat embossed sentiment on brown.  Two iridescent gemstones filled in the holes in the die cut sentiment label.

Staying in a similar colour range, I then tried inking up the stamp with watercolour crayons and spritzing with Tsukineko Shimmer Spritz spray instead of plain water.

Either I used less water or the watercolour crayons don't react as much with water, but I got a lot more detail and less of a watercolour look than I achieved in the first card.

I bordered it with a Spellbinders decorative border for the SU Ways to Use It challenge "Decorative Borders", used a shimmery copper card base, and die cut the sentiment from the same cs.  Some iridescent sequins finished it off.

My third medium was gelatos - and I totally changed my colour scheme as I only have a few gelatos.

Again, I scribbled on the stamp with a few colours, spritzed with water, and stamped on watercolour paper.   I prefer the results I got with the Tombow markers and the watercolour crayons to this.

I masked the butterfly, added a bit of pale blue text and some black splatters in the background, and made a white heat embossed sentiment.  I bordered with black to tie in the sentiment.  My embellishments are tiny flower sequins.

My favourite of the three is the first one - I love the watercolour look I got from using the Tombow markers.  How about you?

You have until July 24th to join us at CAS Mix Up if you want to try your hand at a clean and simple card using stamping, markers, and at least one other element.

Stamps - SU Swallowtail, SU sentiment, Wendy Vechhi text background
Ink - ColorBox white, ColorBox Cape Cod, Distress Black Soot and Vintage Photo
Paper - white, copper shimmer, brown, and black cs; watercolour paper
Accessories - Tombow markers, SU watercolour crayons, Gelatos, white embossing powder, iridescent gemstones, iridescent sequins, flower sequins, Memory Box label die, Spellbinders fancy border die, Nesties label die

Wednesday, 13 July 2016

Christmas Greenery in July

I do hope my followers don't get tired of Christmas cards!  But I need to get lots made for my sale in November.  So here are a couple more - slight variations using the same image.

I used an old Northwoods stamp, coloured it with Copics and a gold gel pen, and sponged around the edges of the panel with Antique Linen Distress ink.  For the first one, I scored the edges of the focal panel for interest, bordered with a holly embossed green layer and a plain red layer, and put it on a blank gold cardbase I had in my stash, and for the second I used just one bordering layer, but notched the edges.  I love the long narrow card for this image.

The first one is going over to CAS Mix UpJuly's challenge is:

I used Copic markers to colour my stamped image, and then used scoring, sponging, and dry embossing for "my choice".

I'll be back soon with something that is not Christmas!!

Stamps - Northwoods
Ink - Memento Tuxedo Black, Distress Antique Linen
Paper - blank gold cardbase; white, green, and red cs
Size - 8.25"x4"
Accessories - Copic markers, gold gel pen, holly embossing folder, ScorBuddy, SU corner notch punch

Sunday, 10 July 2016

Snowflakes in July

Trying to catch up with my self-imposed quota of 10 Christmas cards a month!  This brings me up to 5 for June and we're already into July so I need to spend some serious time in the craft room.

The SCS Free for All challenge this week is Recycle It" - find something to recycle on your card.  Here's what I came up with:

I used a corrugated cup sleeve from a take-out tea I had recently. I mixed some white gesso with silver shimmer paint and randomly painted over it and then trimmed it down to an even rectangle. I bordered it with silver mirri cs. The card base and snowflake flourish are white shimmer cs.

I wanted the sentiment to match the colour of the corrugated cardboard so used Sepia ink with champagne embossing powder over it.

I'd originally thought of putting silver snowflakes on the corrugated cardboard but there wasn't enough contrast, so I took the silver snowflakes I'd die cut and turned them into this card:

I kept it very CAS in just silver and white.  I like the deckled edge die for winter cards and I love that Penny Black sentiment die! 

Supplies for card one:
Stamps: Rosie's Roadshow sentiment
Paper: white shimmer cs, silver mirri cs, corrugated cup sleeve
Ink: Versafine Vintage Sepia 
Accessories: gesso, silver shimmer paint, Memory Box snowflake flourish die, champagne embossing powder 

Supplies for card two:
Paper: white cs, silver glitter cs  
Accessories: Penny Black sentiment die, various snowflake dies, silver sequins, Nesties deckle rectangle die  


Friday, 8 July 2016

Cards for National Chocolate Day

When I saw yesterday's SCS Ways to Use It challenge, I discovered that yesterday was National Chocolate Day - never knew there was such a thing, but I took it as an excuse to go out and treat myself to some lovely chocolates and to make two cards that refer to chocolate.

The challenge is "Celebrate Chocolate" by using brown, white and/or cream with the option of red, gold and silver.

I have two fabulous sentiment stamps by Kay Foley that refer to chocolate so decided to make two cards so that I could use them as my focal points.

For the first card, I used the option of gold:

I used cream cs, stamped the sentiment in brown, and framed it in brown. I stamped a bit of Gorgeous Grunge splatter on the card base and scattered some gold sequins around the frame.

And for this card, I used the option of red as it toned in well with the reddish colours that come out in brown bister:

I stamped the sentiment on a piece of coated cs that had been sprinkled with brown bister, spritzed, and air-dried. I then layered it with red and brown borders, and used a cream card base.

It will make a great get well card next time I need one.

Speaking of dogs, as the second card does, my sweet pup, Tessa, is growing so quickly.  Here she is out on the back porch soaking up some sun:

Thanks for dropping by today!

Supplies for the first card:
Stamps: Kay Foley sentiment, Gorgeous Grunge splatter 
Paper: PTI Vintage Cream, Bazill brown linen cs 
Ink: Memento Rick Cocoa 
Accessories: gold sequins, MFT pierced frame die  

Supplies for the second card:

Stamps: Kay Foley
Paper: PTI Vintage Cream, coated cs, brown and red cs
Ink: Versafine Vintage Sepia
Accessories: brown bister, clear embossing powder, fun foam, Nesties matting basics rectangles    


Monday, 4 July 2016

Gold Bird

I'm thrilled to be staying on the Christmas Challenge Design Team for Happy Little Stampers for another six months.  The challenge for July is:

My favourite way to add gold to a card is with gold heat embossing.  I kept my card very simple - just gold and white.

I wanted the borders for my sentiment and focal panel to match the gold embossing on the bird and "joy" so rubbed the edges of the border pieces with ink and sprinkled on the same embossing powder

I used an embossing folder for my background that I thought really went well with the snowflake flourish that is part of the bird stamp.

Come and join us during the month of July and show us your Christmas cards featuring "gold".   Happy Little Stampers is offering a prize for the best card.

And be sure to check back on August 5th for the next challenge!

Stamps - Inkadinkado bird, Rubber Soul joy
Ink - ColorBox gold
Paper - white cs
Size - A2
Accessories -Cuttlebug embossing folder, gold embossing powder, Nesties circle dies

Sunday, 3 July 2016

Blue, Gold, White, and Silver

Merry Monday posted its last challenge before taking a break over the summer.

I pulled out a bunch of scraps of blue backgrounds I'd made in the past and used some of them up to make this card:

The background on the right is just a spray, the centre is the salt technique, and the left is faux mother of pearl - great chance to use up some leftovers!

The tops of the ornaments were die cut using Tim Holtz's deco adhesive glitter paper.  The one on the right has some punched snowflakes on the centre part as the die cut tore and I was running out of time to enter the challenge so went for a quick solution.

The sentiment was done by sticking a few scraps of both the gold and silver adhesive glitter paper on cs, then die cutting "noel".  The left side of the card needed something to balance it so I added a scrap of gold scroll from die cutting the ornaments.

Looking forward to Merry Monday returning in September as it's one of my favourite Christmas card challenges!


Paper - white cs, Tim Holtz gold and silver deco adhesive glitter paper, leftover background pieces
Size - A2
Accessories - Memory Box ornament dies, McGill tiny snowflake punch, Tim Holtz noel die

Saturday, 2 July 2016

Two Beach Cards

It's the beginning of July and that means summer holidays, beaches, sand, and sunshine.  I'm fortunate enough to live in Vancouver, Canada within a 10 minute drive of our local beaches.

Today over at SCS, the Free for All challenge is to create a beach-themed card.  And the Mixability challenge is to use a favourite phrase or sentiment on a mixed media card.  I combined the two challenges and created this card:

I used a piece of fine grit sandpaper for the sand on the beach. I stamped my sentiment (isn't it a great one!?) on top of it and heat embossed it to make it stand out more.

The water is done with a piece of blue wavy dp. I inked up a text stamp with gesso and wiped a bit of it off so that it stamped randomly on the blue dp. I tore the bottom edge of it to create the waves lapping on the sand. To make some whitecaps and the froth of the waves reaching the sand, I used some watered down white acrylic paint.

I die cut a bunch of small shells and sponged them with various Distress inks. I added a sponged die cut seagull to the top edge.

A few weeks ago I made a similar card that I never got around to posting.  It's a great companion to the card above, but uses different shell dies, bister for the water, and the sentiment stamped on the water instead of the sand.  Here it is:

The sea was made by tearing one edge of a piece of coated cs and then sprinkling with blue bister and spritzing. Once dry, I stamped a few bits of text by inking up the text stamp with white gesso (it's hard to see but it is there - upper right and lower left) and stamped the sentiment with archival ink.

Here's wishing everyone a wonderful summer!

Supplies for the first card:
Stamps - Impression Obsession sentiment, Stampers Anonymous text stamp
Ink - Versafine Onyx Black, various Distress Inks
Paper - white cs, sandpaper, Paper Studio dp
Size - A2
Accessories - Impression Obsession bird die, Memory Box shell dies, white acrylic paint, white gesso, clear embossing paste 

Supplies for the second card:
Stamps - Impression Obsession sentiment, unknown text stamp 
Ink - Archival Jet Black, various Distress inks 
Paper - white cs, coated cs, sandpaper 
Size - 4.75" square
Accessories - blue bister, white gesso, Elizabeth Craft Designs shell dies, fun foam    

Friday, 1 July 2016

Markered Birds

The July challenge over at CAS Mix Up is "Markers".

Here's my Design Team card for the challenge.  I have stamping, markers, and several "your choice" elements (sponging, die cuts, and heat embossing).

The bird stamps are from a company based in Vancouver where I live.  It is called Local King Rubber Stamp - they make stamps, some dies, and also sell a set of markers and glossy card stock for the technique they teach for colouring their stamps with their markers.

I used the Local King markers in a variety of colours to colour my bird stamps.  I stamped them on glossy cardstock and then sponged around the birds.  I bordered the panel with black, glued on a die cut branch under the birds' feet, and added a stamped and heat embossed sentiment.  I let the branch and sentiment hang over the edges of the focal panel to add more interest.

Our CAS Mix Up challenge runs until July 24 so get out some markers and stamps, and think of at least one other element to add to them (for ideas see the right hand column over at the CAS Mix Up blog).  We'd love to have you join us but please remember it is a CAS challenge so we are looking for clean and simple cards only!

Stamps - Local King Rubber Stamp birds, SU Happy Birthday
Ink - ColorBox frost white for the sentiment
Paper - Gina K white for the cardbase, black and brown cs, glossy cs
Size - A2
Accessories - Local King Rubber Stamp markers, white embossing powder, Memory Box branch die