Saturday, November 29, 2014

Sneak Peek

Two. More. Days!
It's hard to believe that we are into the 10th challenge and the last one for 2014. This challenge blog is made for card makers like YOU and ME! Without your participation and support, it would not exist.

Here is a shout out to Simon Says Stamp for sponsoring our past challenges!
 I am happy to share that Simon Says Stamp will continue to do so in 2015 (Yay!)
Wait till you see our next challenge, I promise you that you will want to get inky!
See you on Dec. 1st!

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Spotlight Feature!

The moment that you all have been waiting for is HERE! You must all know difficult it is for us to pick Top 10 Favorites. We hope that you are not feeling discouraged if you were not picked this time. As an avid challenge player myself, I know you have certainly put your heart and passion into your entry/entries.

Let's get right to it ....
Dr. John: " I like flaky things."
1. #228 Karen D.
 2. #265 Amy Kolling

Virginia: "These GORGEOUS projects dazzled me!"
3. #49 Gayatri

4. #167 Lea Lawson 

5. # 226 May Park
6. #239 Maria F.

Stephanie: "These cards really stood out to me in my selective process! "

7. #19 Hannelie
8. #78 Lyndal
9. #140 shirley-bee
10. #170 Shona Chambers

Please grab your badge, Top 10 favorites!
From the Top 10 Favorites, the Random. Org picked two lucky winners for this challenge.
            Drum roll, please ...
  The 1st prize $25 Gift voucher goes to....  

 8. #78 Lyndal
The 2nd prize $15 Gift Pack of Metal Sheets  generously offered 
by "Add a Little Dazzle" goes to

6. #239 Maria F. 

Congratulations, Lyndal and Maria ! Please e-mail me to claim your prize before midnight, Nov. 28 Eastern Time. If not, another Top 10 Favorite will be randomly picked! 

In no particular order, here are our Honorable Mentions.
We will have a sneak peek for next challenge on the 29th!
See you then!

Friday, November 21, 2014

A Wrap-Up!

Thank you so much for the amazing entries for All Things Metallic Challenge! I hope that you got inspired by looking through the beautiful cards. And please remember to give each other some blog love while you visit!

 Here are the features that I noticed while I visited your blogs. Let's have a little summary, shall we?

1. Embossing/stamping: let's stick to the basics... and it totally works!

2. A little touch of gold/silver goes a long way.

3. Gold and silver..., why not!? Look at these eye candy!

4. Watercolors go so beautifully with the metallic element!

5. Sequins, sequins...everywhere! Love these shaker cards!
6. Use that metal paper! It's cool, pretty and oh. so. easy and fun!

7. Gorgeous inking mix fabulously with the metallic elements.  

I hope that you love seeing these gorgeous entries in a few different categories. One thing I know for certain, I simply can't keep up with all the commenting any more. In order to keep the challenge going, I'm doing the best I can. If you didn't get a comment from me, do not fret. The panel of judges do look at each and every entry and do take our job of judging seriously.
 Please come back on the 25th for our Spotlight Feature!
Thanks for stopping by!

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Guest Designer-Keren Baker!

Hello, it's Veteran's Day in the US and Remembrance Day in UK and Canada.
Today we have a special guest  Keren Baker who was previously our guest designer for stitching challenge. Keren is sharing her talent on how to add a little metallic dazzle to your projects.

We are starting Keren's projects with a Poppy flower card.

Keren: Today in the UK is Remembrance Day where we remember all those fallen in the wars. We are forever thankful for their sacrifice. It's a day of gratitude and we mark it with poppies. Poppies were chosen because of the poem 'In Flanders Fields'. They bloomed across some of the worst battlefields of Flanders in World War I, their brilliant red colour became a symbol for the blood spilled in the war.
Keren: I was inspired to create the Poppies card using the Brushed Poppies set. Because this set is a solid stamp, you can't really stamp on the metal and show the metal through (like you would with an outline image). You can sometimes stamp the image on the reverse and cut out & use the shape, but you have several parts to the set & can't stamp on the reverse of paper  or the colour won't show. I wondered how I could use the metal so tried stamping and embossing in clear embossing powder. It worked and gave a lovely sheen and texture too. Definitely a technique I'll be using on my metal sheets again.
Keren: For the other metallic element, I chose some metallic spray inks to add a shimmer without detracting from the image. Spraying directionally also helps with movement in the design. Do try some metal on your cards or tags- you can see that you can use a whole plethora of products to get this gorgeous metallic look.
Products: Brushed Poppies Stamp set (Clearly Besotted), Scarlet Red metal (Add A Little Dazzle), Red & Gold Spritz inks (Artiste), white embossing powder

Keren's 2nd card.
Keren: When using metallic products, it's easy to go over the top. Remember those days of tons of mirror card? (shudder!!) In this card, I cut out the Mama Elephant tag from white card stock, and added Distress Inks to add depth. I spritzed a little water to give some white areas & punched out a tag hole. I threaded some thin gold metal (Add A Little Dazzle), bent it & secured with glue. I cut out some Perfect Peacock metal with the stars from the Mama Elephant tag dies, sprinkled them over the card base & affixed them to the base. I used my second metal element; embossing powder- simple embossing using the beautiful Neat & Tangled stamp set. For the last metallic supply I used my favourite metallic ink (Gold Stazon) with the lovely star flurry from the Bowtiful stamp set (Waffle Flower Crafts). It just shows you can have lots of different metallic elements, still keep the card CAS & not too over the top!

Products: Dreams Neat & Tangled,  Mama Elephant Embellished Tags ,
Metal: Perfect Peacock by Add A Little Dazzle
Star stamp from Bowtiful by Waffle Flower,
Others: Gold Embossing powder, Distress inks ( Peacock Feathers, Mowed Lawn, Shabby Shutters) by Ranger

Isn't Keren the BEST? This prolific card maker is super busy with lots of ongoing DT work and  I am thrilled that she was able to create for us. I hope that our guest designers Taheerah, Tasnim and Keren inspire you to create metallic projects. You can visit Keren's inspiring blog here.

Remember, we have two prizes for this month's challenge (a Simon Says Stamp $25 gift voucher and $15 Gift Pack of Metal Sheets from Add a Little Dazzle). Thanks for stopping by!

Friday, November 7, 2014

Guest Designer-Tasnim Ahmed

Hello, dear friends! We are in for another TREAT today. 
The uber talented Tasnim Ahmed is in. the. house!

I first came to know Tasnim (Cards & Bookmarks) more than 2 years ago. I was on the Runway Inspired Challenge design team along with Tasnim and have been following her big talent ever since. Tasnim has one of those rare talents. She thinks like an Engineer (she is a Mechanical Engineer by training) and designs like an artist. It is no wonder that the stamp company Altenew (co-founded with the fabulous Jennifer Rzasa) has become the new darling stamp company that stampers simply love.

 Let's hear it from Tasnim, shall we?

Tasnim: I started my work on this card by painting the flowers. I didn't plan on how I was going to use them yet, I simply enjoyed water coloring the new Peony Scrolls from Altenew. I used 100 lb Bristol paper from Strathmore to water color the Peonies. I like that it is white and smooth, as opposed to the off-white color and the texture you get from standard water color papers. Of course, it all depends on what look you are going for, and what works best for you. As for the water color, I used Peerless water colors, which I have found to blend very well on Bristol paper.

 Tasnim: I stamped the flowers using a very light ink (Distress Antique Linen), then proceeded to coloring by first painting the petals with clean water, and then adding color at the base of the petals. If the petals were small, I let the water do most of the work, and if the petals were larger, I dabbed by brush to slightly spread the color. Very important to remember: don't paint petals that have a common border at the same time. Always paint petals that are not touching at any point, wait for them to dry, then proceed with the other petals. Once the flowers were painted and dry (another bonus for Bristol, it dries very quickly), I trimmed them out using micro-tip scissors.

Tasnim: I wanted to use a decorative metallic frame, but since I didn't have any such dies, I used the closest thing I had, an intricate round floral die by Memory Box together with Gold metal sheet from Add a Little Dazzle.
After I arranged the die cut and the flowers, I pondered over where to place the sentiment. I first used a Navy blue label sentiment on the lower left corner. I did not like how dark it was, and how it covered part of the flowers. I then stamped a semi-round sentiment from Clearly Besotted Stamps' Many Thanks set on white card stock and used a circle punch to punch it out. I think this worked much better, as it draws the eyes to to the right place, and it also recreated my original vision of using a frame.
Tasnim: (for my 2nd project), I used the flowers from Altenew's Whimsical Flowers to create the focal image in this card. First I embossed the outline images in gold on white card stock. Next I spritzed the flowers with Heidi Swapp's color shine. I used the colors Navy and Coral. Once they were dry, I trimmed out the flowers and arranged them on a Walnut Cream card base from Bazzill. The sentiment die and stamp are from Simon Says Stamp Expressions For You set.

Delicate, exquisite, stunning... are a few of the words that came to mind to describe Tasnim's projects!
 Big thanks to Tasnim for detailing her thoughts and creative process. With her wonderful explanations, we are able to understand and even pick up a few tips here and there. Please join me and give Tasnim some blog love. 

You can follow Tasnim's talent in her Cards & Bookmarks here and her company Altenew here. Altenew even has a monthly challenge and you will be pleasantly surprised at what you can create with their amazing stamps.
Thanks so much for stopping by!

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Guest Designer-Taheerah Atchia

Hello, my friends! Let's welcome our first guest designer for All Things Metallic Challenge. I have known Taheerah for quite some time now. She first appeared in the limelight in Gallery Idol 2012 and has been a powerhouse in card-making ever since. Taheerah's approach is always authentic, organic and detailed. I am often impressed with her glittery and trendy designs. We are so lucky to have Taheerah with us for this challenge! 

Hi everyone! I'm Taheerah and I am so super-excited and honoured to be guest designing for Virginia's View Challenge this month!!
I'm a 30-plus-a-few Londoner now living in the North West of England with my beautiful cats. I work in IT by day and craft by night! I love all things geeky - having a background in science and working in my profession I guess that can't be avoided! I've always been creative but stamping and cardmaking have truly captured my heart and my imagination. I love experimenting with most styles and am definitely a huge lover of trends. I really thrive on pushing my skills and creative eye to the limit, so my work is frequently packed with techniques, outside-the-box uses of product, and clever details! The current Virginia's View Challenge could not be more perfect for me as everyone knows how much I love gold and other metallics - so much so that I made *two* cards for my guest post, and I could very easily have kept going!!

For my first card I wanted a modern, light feeling, so I kept a lot of white space to let that gold shine! I love to get extra uses from my supplies, so I used a falling snow stencil with embossing paste, but then added gold embossing powder and heat embossed it whilst still wet to give a raised, confetti-like effect!!
When you have a striking detail such as this background it makes sense to let it do all the talking and keep the rest of the detail minimal. Here I added a delicate black die-cut sentiment and then mounted my panel onto a white card base for a fresh look. Gold + black + white = one of my favourite combinations!
For my second card, I wanted to show how flipping the proportions of the colours could give instant drama. I took a shimmery black card base and added some gold glitter tape across it to give the stripes. I die cut my letters from some metal sheets and adhered them straight over the top for a big, bold look.
To finish up, I pulled in some of that white but in a much smaller role for my supporting sentiment, and just a little added touch with a wood veneer star coated in white ink and enamel accents. This card screams for your attention and it's very hard to deny it that!
I thought I'd finish up with some of my own tips for using metallics on a card:
  • Pairing metallics with lots of white space gives a fresh, modern look, and allows the metallic to really take centre-stage without making the project feel 'heavy'
  • Metallic supplies will instantly grab the light and your focus, so think about whether you want to keep them to accenting a project or whether you want to exploit them to their full advantage and give them prominence on your design
  • For a quick and easy way to glam up a project you can't go wrong with some splatter of your favourite metallic mist!
  • Don't be afraid to mix different metallic colours and finishes. The results can be spectacular! To prevent the project feeling 'overcrowded' balance the design by having one metallic featured more than the other
  • There are so many different metallic products on the market today, so just experiment and have fun!
  • If you'd like to read a more in-depth analysis of the gold trend, I wrote a Trend Requiem post which was featured on the Moxie Fab World blog last year. Gold is still going strong and I highlighted some other inspiration images, projects and supplies, so it's worth a read!
 Isn't Taheerah rocking amazing or what? I am so digging her gorgeous gold projects, creative process and her insightful tips! Please join me to thank Taheerah for going above and beyond for this guest design. Taheerah also hosts an inspiration challenge Cure for the Monday Blues (see example here) every Monday right in her blog. It's fun and full of inspiration! It will be awesome if you follow Taheerah's talent in her blog here.  Please make sure that you leave her some blog love!
Thanks so much for stopping by!

Saturday, November 1, 2014

Virginia's View Challenge # 9

Hello! Welcome to Virginia's View Challenge. As we get close to the end of the year, how can we add to the festivity of the upcoming holiday season? Let's get metallic! You see the heavy metal influence in decor, fashion, advertisements...etc. This month, we are exploring the beauty of metallic elements on paper crafting!

What are the metal elements, you ask!? What can be used in this challenge?

~Apply your gold/silver gel pen (such as Wink of Stella) to add the metal element
~Emboss, emboss, emboss...your images in gold, silver or copper 
~DIY embellishments in silver, gold, pewter, copper...
~Ready-made embellishments: gold brad, silver star, gold sequins, silver confetti, copper wire...etc. 
~Incorporate gold, silver paper into your projects
~Spray gold, silver shimmer mist to create a unique background
~Make a shaker card with metallic elements (gold stars, silver confetti...)
~Simply get inspired by our challenge photo (see above) and create a project!
~Use anything that has a metal element (gold embossing paste, metal sheets)
~....anything you can add for your Midas touch! Be creative!

I am sharing two cards as examples:
For this ornaments card, I used metal sheets from Add a Little Dazzle and created this colorful Christmas card. With aluminum craft metal sheets like these, it is so easy to create something dazzling! Using a little bit of metallic element goes a long way!
Merry Christmas-002

And because the owner/founder of "Add a Little Dazzle" Monica Weaver is so awesome, she is offering a  $15 Gift Pack of Metal Sheets to one of the Top 10 Favorites.Woohoo!
My 2nd card is all about gold-embossing....
What do you think? Easy peasy, huh?

This monthly card-making challenge blog will run till the 18th (11:55pm Eastern Time) and there will be a SPOTLIGHT feature of Top 10 Favorites on the 25th. Any style and levels are most welcome!
1. to foster the love of stamping/card making among the on line 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.
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...) is welcome!
The Top 10 selection criteria will be based on:
1. Originality (30%)
2. Execution (30%)
3. Craftsmanship (20%)
4. Presentation (10%)
5. Wow factor (10%)

Among the Top 10 Fav, there will be a random draw for a lucky (and talented) winner who will then receive the top prize. In order to qualify for the top prize, your project has to be NEW (not linked back to a previously made project). You are welcome to combine other challenges, but please limit your total number of challenges no more than 4.

Our Sponsor: Simon Says Stamp 
Thank you, Simon Says Stamp!!
Our Top Winner (randomly selected from Top 10 Favorites) will receive a $25 voucher!
  AWESOME, eh?!
As always, we will have guest designers to inspire you in the next few days. Be sure to come back and be inspired! Please keep in mind that we have two prizes this month!!