Monday, April 28, 2014

Upcoming Challenge #3 and SRM Sticker Giveaway!!

Hi all! In just two more days, NEW Virginia's View Challenge will be here again!
I hope you will gather your craft supplies and inks ready because are going to have some serious fun!

Meanwhile, here is some eye candy for you. This gift purse (from SRM Stickers) has the hidden theme for our next challenge!
 Our Logo
By the way, SRM Stickers is having a Design Team call, you can find out the details here! I had the pleasure of being on SRM design team for well over a year and it was an awesome experience! If you are interested, you should totally try it out!

edited: if that was not enough, SRM Stickers now have a monthly theme challenge (details here)! Today you can win yourself some stickers and PLAY the challenge!
love purse
 So many elements for the next challenge... what could it be?

 AND because Susan McShirley ( owner of SRM Stickers) is AWESOME, she is giving away a prize package for our blog followers. If you are already a SRM Blog follower or newly become one, you get an extra chance to win (just enter an extra link)! You have to be a follower of Virginia's View Challenge to enter this giveaway!  
That means:
Virginia's View follower--- you can enter one link
V.V. follower AND SRM blog follower--- two links (edited: please make sure the two links are from different posts. They can be from the same blog/site)

Hint: this SRM prize package will come in handy for our next challenge! The giveaway ends on May 5, 12:55pm, Eastern Time. See you right here on May 1st for our new challenge!

Friday, April 25, 2014

Spotlight Feature

Hello! The eagerly anticipated moment is here! Time to reveal our Top 10 picks! Out of all 246 entries, picking 10 is extrememly difficult. "The chance of winning Virginia's View Challenge is still better than winning the lottery! " said Dr. John. We truly hope that you will continue to play!

Without further ado, here are the top 10 favorites (in no particular order)
Dr. John: " I like Sci-Fi. These two cards are so well done!"

1. (#17) Vicki Dutcher
2. (#80)  Diane Nguyen
Diana Nguyen, birthday card, Our Daily Bread Designs
Virginia: " I love card makers who think outside the box! The following favorites nailed the stencil challenge with their excellent designs and mad skills! "
3. (#101) Chupa

4. (#120) Preeya
5. (#170) Shery
 2014-04-13 OLC MM Seize the moment-C
6. ( #224)  Miriam
 7 (#11) Nancy
Stephanie: "I like the use of different textures even though it’s white on white. Classic design, but simple and elegant.

8 (#15) Paperpicnic (Jayne)
Stephanie: "Gorgeous colours and fun graphic patterns caught my eye."

9 (#63) Kara

  Stephanie: "Beautiful colour combo. Really like the unique design and the jean pocket is a great touch for a boy/masculine card. I would wear that striped pattern any day.

10 (# 180) Thingie
Stephanie: "Pretty mix of patterns. Pop out birds and lightly stamped ones create great depth! I would also love to wear this pattern or have it on my stationary."

Top 10 Favorites, please feel free to grab your winning badge!
Our Honorable Mentions are
With Random. Org's help, the winner among the top 10 Favorites is....
(drum roll please)

5. (#170) Shery

Please e-mail me for your gift voucher and you can enjoy a little shopping spree
generously sponsored by
Simon Says Stamp 
(now with an updated shopping website)
I can't believe that April's challenge coming to an end! I am looking forward to the next one! 
Thank you so much for your amazing support and feedback!

Monday, April 21, 2014

A Wrap-Up!

Just when I thought that the stencil challenge might be a did. it. again! We have an amazing number of entries--246 in total! I fully understand that stencils may not be everyone's cup of tea! After all, we are predominantly stampers at heart and anything more that we add to our cards can be just plain tricky and messy! We all take such pride in our stamps and inks, it's hard to let stencils come between us isn't it?

However, I am impressed with the styles and designs that you came up with. So many of you have never tried stencils before (such as Lynn, Bev, Robin K.Sheila H...etc). You now have a new found love for playing with stencils. For that, I declare this challenge a SUCCESS

I summarized the entries into 7 categories as to how we use our stencils.

1. Making your own stencils: A huge round of applause to the brave and creative souls in this challenge.  By creating your very own stencil, you have already stretched your stamps/diecut supplies and taken your creativity to the next level!

"I look in my closet, and if I need it, I design it"---Donna Karen
If you don't have stencils in your stash, you create it.

2. Making your own embossing paste: Not only are they creative artists, these two card makers Cindy and Jo are truly inventive in making their own embossing paste--with amazing results! BRAVO!

3. Full on approach: Let the stencils be the stars! That is exactly what these card makers set to do. The main image/focus are all about the stencils! Way to tackle the challenge! Whether you used stencils as the main image (flower, sentiment..) or geometric patterns, this approach truly makes stencils shine!

4. Stencil and glitter: This seems like an odd combo, but it works brilliantly! These card makers are not afraid of getting messy. Not only did they play with embossing paste, they also combined glitter into the mix! The results are glittery and totally stunning! 

5. Adding textures:
With the embossing paste and embossing, stencils are great tools for adding textures. These beauties were created with such thought, the textures certainly add a WOW factor.

6. Stencil with a shape
These cards are created with shapes and themes in mind. You can easily identify them and they are so pleasing to the eyes!

7. Non-card projects: Stencils are so versatile! Some of you came up with creative non-card projects. 

From canvas, tags to layouts....stencils can be incorporated into your projects.
AND I love it when you make videos, here are two awesome videos ( Laura S. and Shery ) as part of the entries. Please check them out and click "like" if you have not done so.

Big thanks to you for entering this challenge. I truly hope this challenge inspired you in some ways and made you a skillful card-maker! We'll have the Spotlight Feature on the 25th next!
Thanks for stopping by!

Monday, April 14, 2014

Stenciled Rainbow Card

Just popping in to share a stencil card that I made!
I used this little stencil from Simon Says Stamp (Rainbow).

 I applied Distress Inks one at a time (with a bit of masking). It was rather easy to do. The most time-consuming part was sewing up the sequins. You can totally skip  that part by adhering it with Glossy Accent. But I think the stitching adds that Wow factor, right?  In the end, I applied Stickles with a paint brush and that was it! The sentiment is from CAS-ual Fridays Stamps (Truth Is).

I am absolutely delighted that so many of you try something new and step outside of your comfort zone with stencils. Having fun and trying something new...that's what this challenge is about!
you are fantasic

Friday, April 11, 2014

Inspiring Ideas for Stencils!

Hello! Are you having fun with stencils yet?
Here are some inspiring posts, links and videos about stencils.

Paper Crafter's Library: beautiful examples of using stencils.
Here is an excellent line up of stencil videos (from Penny Black)
Heidi Swapp video (layered stencil)
May Flaum sums up her 5 ways of using stencil ( with a video, too)
Dry Embossing with stencils by Shari Carroll (see here)
Here is an idea that I shared in Yes, Virginia...

Catherine Pooler (player #111) has some cool ideas with stencils and gel medium to inspire you! She made it look EASY and FUN! Thanks, Catherine!

 In the following video, Darlene combined stencil and Emboss Resist to create these gorgeous cards.

Quite a few of you are using embossing paste. I was quite skeptical about this material at first. Once I got my hands on it, I love playing with the paste! This demo was done by Wendy Vecchi showing how to use the Embossing Paste and stencil! You may learn a few things, too!

After you see the video, you will understand why :)

And remember our last challenge-watercolor? How about combining stencil and water-color? The talented Nichol Magouirk video shows you how!

 I hope these videos have inspired you. Please leave these talented ladies some blog love or give them a thumbs-up after viewing!
Thanks so much for stopping by!

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Guest Designer-Laura Bassen

Today is a very special day having my dear friend Laura Bassen here as our guest designer. Laura is an accomplished stamper with a super creative style all of her own! Her colorful cards make you happy happy happy. I think the latest hit song from Pharrell Williams "Happy" (see video here ) is the perfect theme song for her creations!

Laura created not one...but two inspiring cards for our challenge!
She made color-layering with the stencil look so easy and fun to re-create!
Laura used the latest stencils from Simon Says Stamp (Mom and Dad) for her projects.
Isn't this card artsy and fun?

And if that's not enough, she made this very special video, too! Got to love that Laura!
You have to see the video to see how she did the 2nd card...and who inspired her!

In her lovely video, Laura chatted and mentioned our meet last October in Chicago...well, here are the photos to show what she was talking about :) 
(left to right) Cristina, Laura, Virginia, Dr. John and Kelly

 Isn't card-making fun? I am so thankful to have had the opportunity to meet these sweet and uber talented stamping friends. BIG thanks to Laura for guest designing here today! Please stop by Laura's blog and give her some love ( if you haven't already)! I highly recommend that you subscribe to Laura's blog and videos. They are my happy-go-to stamping places :)
Thanks for stopping by!

Friday, April 4, 2014

Guest Designer-Debby Hughes

It's an exciting day here at Virginia's View Challenge. We are featuring the first guest designer of the month! If you are into card-making and blogging, you might know her beautiful work already! Debby Hughes (Lime Doodle Designs) is well known for her clean and simple designs with amazing details and touches. Her stunning cards will make you stop everything and admire!

...See what I mean? Debby has whipped up (literally) a "stencil-themed" project for us. The colors and textures of this sweet card are simply dreamy and captivating....

Debby:  "As soon as I saw the inspiration collage the bottom centre image just jumped out at me! I was visualizing an Italian villa with rustic bare plaster, my daydream might have diverged to include fresh pasta with a little pesto and a glass of something red on a sun drenched veranda, but I digress! I gently blended some ink in pinky/peach tones to Taffy card stock and then applied Claudine Helmuth multi matte medium. Once dry I swept Wendy Vecchi crackled texture paste over the panel to give the rustic crackle effect. When I first started using stencils I used dies to create my own from card and for this card I knew the perfect die for the job was the Butterfly Tendrils die from Simon Says Stamp. Once I'd got my DIY stencil in place I very roughly and thickly applied Wendy Vecchi white embossing paste to create an effect similar to the inspiration. Finally accenting the piece with a tag and a couple of vellum butterflies."

This is the diecut that Debby used to create her own stencil
 Butterfly Tendrils Die
 Here is the close-up
So there you have it! A HUGE thank-you to Debby for creating this amazing project. I hope you are totally inspired and want to try out this challenge. Remember, if you don't have a stencil, you can use any diecut to create your own stencil (just like Debby)!
Thanks for stopping by!

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Virginia's View Challenge # 2

Happy April! Finally, Spring is the air! It's a new season and it's also time to embrace a new challenge! I had planned on doing this very theme for a while now. Coincidentally, there are similar themes going on in other challenge blogs. I almost changed my mind...but in the end, I think there are simply so many possibilities that needed to be explored. So here we are.

Stencils are all the rage right now! Have you played with any lately!? I'm not sure how stencils made the comeback in paper crafting. All I can think of is ...blame it all on the manufacturers and marketers. Seriously though, stencils are SO fun and easy to use!

What is a stencil? 
According to Wikipedia:
 A stencil is a thin sheet of material, such as paper, plastic, or metal, with letters or a design cut from it, used to produce the letters or design on an underlying surface by applying pigment through the cut-out holes in the material. The key advantage of a stencil is that it can be reused to repeatedly and rapidly produce the same letters or design. The design produced with a stencil is also called a stencil.

A few great things about stencils:
~inexpensive, compared with rubber /clear stamps
~take little room to store
~you can spray, stamp, dab, emboss, dry emboss.... add paste for textures
~perfect for layering colors and you can keep layers to a minimum
~it's sophisticated and almost fool-proof
~stencil templates come in so many styles and varieties

 No stencils, you say? No problem! You can take your die cut out and make one! Just watch an awesome video tutorial from Jennifer McGuire here and a little photo tutorial from me here. You are on your way! ANYONE can play this challenge! You know you've. got. this!

I am no expert on using stencils, but I do love to use the same one to create a few different looks! I created 3 projects with the same Simon Says Stamp Stencil Leaves. The first one was inspired by the bottom middle inspiration photo. The embossing paste has made this look possible. After I added embossing paste over the stencil, I stamped some fine text onto the dried paste.  I then fussy cut the stamped/stenciled/embossed image. The rest was easy.sweet friend
My 2nd project is a simple tag with lots of colors. I stamped music notes and text for extra interest. I also inked up the edges with white Distress Paint to lighten it up the design a bit. Lastly, I added some hand-stitching and sequins. It was really fun to make this tag!
 live every single day out loud
Lastly, I layered the leaf stencil image with some vellum (no, your eyes are fine..., it's the vellum)!just thinking about you
The great thing about stencils is that you can layer it without adding much bulk. I added one extra layer of vellum and stamped the sentiment inside the vellum.
three stenciled cards
So there you have it!

These are my humble goals that I am aiming to achieve:
1. to foster the love of stamping/card making among the online community
2. to grow as a stamper/card-maker regardless of level and experience
3. to make new friends and encourage the camaraderie amongst the participants/blog followers. 

The challenge will run till the 18th (12:59pm Eastern Time) and there will be a SPOTLIGHT feature on the 25th. In this feature, I will be highlighting a few of the participants' work. We can all be oohing and aahing about a WOW design that deserves to be admired and appreciated. You are encouraged to link up as many as projects as you like. Cards, scrapbook layouts, altered projects... anything with paper, stamps and inks involved are welcome! If the linked project is not related to the challenge, it will be deleted.  Don't have a blog? No problem! Any link (Flickr, FB page, Splitcoaststampers, Pinterest...) is welcome! You can use the challenge photo as your inspiration (optional).

In order to qualify for the top prize ( $25 from Simon Says Stamp)
~your project has to be NEW (not linked back to a previously made project)
~you have to be a follower (you can use Bloglovin') of this blog
~you are welcome to combine other challenges, please limit your total number of challenges to no more than 4.
Our Sponsor:
Simon Says Stamp
Our Top Winner (randomly selected from Top 10 Favorites) will receive a $25 voucher!

  AWESOME, eh?!
 We will have guest designers to inspire you in our next few posts.
Thanks so much for stopping by!