Friday, April 2, 2021

WFC2104W1 - Waffle Flower Challenge: Pastels


Today, I am thrilled to share a special card for a challenge with Waffle Flower Crafts. I was fortunate enough to take part in this challenge as a guest designer, and had an absolute blast creating my card.

The theme for the challenge is pastels - which is just perfect for me. I often use pastel colors and I love how they make any project feel dreamy and magical. For my card, I was inspired by the beginnings of spring all around me, so I decided to make a magical fairy card.

A little ink blending with white splatters and a spray of flowers and leaves pairs perfectly with two lovely fairies. I am so happy with how it turned out and please do expect to see me play with this fun stamp set a lot more in the future.

Monday, March 8, 2021

Tea Thanks


I've been drinking lots of tea lately - it's been both energizing and soothing, not to mention delicious. It's not completely out of character for me, as I've enjoyed tea throughout the years. But I'd always stuck to my familiar herbal teas. Lately, I've been trying other flavors and discovering what I love and what I don't. Since I was feeling inspired, I thought I'd make a simple little card with a teacup and I like how it turned out.

I've been going through phases lately of wanting to do things in a very minimal (clean and simple) kind of way, and then bouncing to more complex/layered as a way to make good use of many supplies. It's very rewarding to explore different styles, even if I'm not always comfortable with them.

I think growth comes from pushing past our comfort walls and into places where we can explore intuitively. We get better with practice - lots and lots of practice.

Saturday, March 6, 2021

Coffee Smiles


In contrast to the card I shared yesterday, today's card didn't turn out the way I imagined it at all. In the past, that would be something that would frustrate me to no end - especially when I had a very clear idea of what I wanted to do. I've been trying to relax my expectations a little lately, though, and still share things that are imperfect.

I think I will revisit this idea again in the future. Even if it didn't turn out the way that I expected, it might work with a different set of supplies. Sometimes a different execution can make the idea become a better fit.

Thursday, March 4, 2021

We Flamingo Together


Today is my birthday and I wanted to share a card that makes me happy. It's an idea that's been in the back of my mind for a few weeks now, but I hadn't gotten around to creating it until now. And it turned out just like I wanted it to - which is amazing.

I'm not doing anything big today. Just a quiet day that I can spend on my favorite hobbies - which is a perfect birthday in my book. How do you like to celebrate?

Tuesday, March 2, 2021

Cookie love


I really enjoy baking. There's something so warm and comforting about being in the kitchen, mixing ingredients just right and walking away with a delicious treat. Despite how lovely it is, it's another activity that had to take the back seat in 2020. I still baked Christmas cookies (it's my favorite tradition), but nothing more than that.

I know that things are still stressful, still difficult and exhausting. But I would like to slowly go back to doing what I love this year. Step by step, start focusing on activities that make me feel more whole - like baking delicious treats for my family and creating art. It will never feel like there's enough time for everything, but I have to start somewhere...

Sunday, February 28, 2021

Season's Greetings (February)


It is the last day of February, and it's time to share my monthly holiday card. As I'm writing this, I can see snow through my window - big, lazy clumpy snowflakes that dance around as they're picked up by small gusts of wind. It is my favorite kind of snowfall, as it just makes everything look peaceful and magical.

I've been thinking about slowly introducing some small personal challenges again to help boost my creativity. Lately, I've been staring at a blank page (or in this case card base) and feeling overwhelmed. There's so much I'd like to do and so much to create that I don't know where to start...

Hopefully, a small challenge will give me a starting point. I'll let you know how it goes - but hopefully, I'll have a few cards that to share at the end of it.

Thank you for reading!

Monday, February 22, 2021

Thinking of You, Spring


My favorite season is autumn. I love the cool weather, the rain and the changing leaves. In contrast, my least favorite season would probably be spring. Though similar to autumn, spring comes with seasonal allergies that make me miserable.

I recently watched a short indie movie about the different seasons. One of the things that stuck with me is how we're intrinsically tied to the seasons, on a spiritual level. If we celebrate each season as it unfolds, we feel closer to nature and life feels more simple. As I've actively worked on living and enjoying a simple and slow life, the idea of celebrating seasons really resonated with me.

This spring, I will try to celebrate the season instead of complaining about allergies. I will look to new growth and new possibilities of seeing my creativity through a fresh perspective. I'm excited to see new things I can try and master with a different outlook.

Saturday, February 20, 2021

Be Happy


There are just days when my creativity is asleep. No matter how hard I try, I just can't get past the mental or creative block. If I force it, I end up creating something really simple that makes me feel "meh". On the other hand, if I stay away from creating for too long, it takes even more time to get back into the flow of things.

I haven't figured out the solution yet, but I think it's worth exploring different types of creativity at times like these. I might not be able to pull off a complete card, but I could play with die-cuts or do some coloring. One big thing I'm trying to keep in mind is that it's okay to just play. I don't have to complete a project every crafty session. Sometimes starting it and walking away when I get stuck gives me that clarity to know what I want to do when I came back to it.

Thursday, February 18, 2021

Hello Girl


A while back, I purchased a few pieces of 12x12 scrapbook paper with the idea of trimming it down to use as a card front. Most of the papers ended up being far too large and too finicky to use on a card, but a couple of pieces looked like they could make a good focal point.

I combined one of those focal points with a die-cut from a die-cut pack. While it's not one of my more complicated cards, I feel like it was a good learning experience - if nothing else, then how to be more careful and selective about my purchases. I still have several 12x12 papers, but they are using as backgrounds when I take card pictures. 

If I do purchase more of 12x12 paper, I will pay more attention to the size and scale of the pattern.

Tuesday, February 16, 2021



Re-discovering ephemera in my crafty stash is always a joyous moment - even more so when it's something that still inspires me to create. I remember buying several set of resin flowers on Etsy because I fell in love with resin flowers that came in a card kit years ago. I bought several options and colors, but (surprisingly!) didn't go overboard.

I'd forgotten about these resin flowers for a while, as they add significant bulk and most of my cards were made for easy mailing. But they are absolutely lovely and make a card look really special. So, I've pulled a few to use on a card or two. I think they will be an interesting element to use on a few hand-given cards.

Sunday, February 14, 2021

Happy Valentine's Day


Happy Valentine's Day! On a day about love, I thought I'd chat a little bit about what I've loved lately. 

One thing I've been enjoying a lot is a daily cup of tea. I make a cup of tea at the start of my lunch break at work and enjoy it shortly after. I was lucky enough to receive a large selection box of teas for Christmas from my sister-in-law a little while ago, so I have many delicious options to try.

Another thing I've loved lately is journaling. I try to journal daily, as I really enjoy the feeling of writing by hand. Throughout 2020, I'd invested in some stationery supplies and I filled out several journals completely. I'm happy to continue journaling regularly this year, as well.

And, of course, I've rediscovered my love for stamping and coloring. It took time to get back on track, but I am doing much better and making great use of my supplies. That makes me very happy.

Friday, February 12, 2021

Made for each other


We are getting close to Valentine's Day! I haven't made very many love-themed cards yet this year, but I may do so throughout the year as I am with Christmas cards. I find that one can never share enough love, so love cards usually get made a lot in my crafty space.

 I have gone through and reorganized some of my supplies a little. I like to periodically look through my stash - even when it's been organized in a way that works for me. I can pull out seasonal supplies or supplies I would like to use in the near future and remind myself of goodies I might have forgotten.

Since I'm not actively bringing in any new supplies, it's much easier to go through things in small batches and come up with ideas on how to use them. It's a very satisfying feeling to know I have everything I already need right at hand and work within the constraints of my current stash.

Wednesday, February 10, 2021

Hello Sunshine


I've limited my use of social media, but I still do occasionally watch a few card-making videos. One of my favorite video types to watch is when many cards are made out of a single paper pad. There's something so satisfying about seeing all the paper used up and a whole load of completed cards at the end.

I've tried making multiple cards using the same supplies, and it's just not something that I'm good at. I can (and have) done assembly-style cards when making a set, but that's a little different than making just a couple of the same card. 

One of the things that also intrigues me about that type of video is use of card sketches. I love sketches in theory, but struggle following them too closely - especially when they feature a lot of layers. Still, it is something I would like to work on in the future, as I feel it would make card-making easier on days my creative mojo is dormant but I still want to create.

Monday, February 8, 2021

Pixie Hello


Watercolor has always been something that I've been drawn to, but I've got a long way to go before I master it. The most challenging part is always getting a specific result out of watercolor. Watercolor does what it wants and it's fabulous for completely random surprise effects. It's a lot more challenging when you want control over a specific end result.

I'm sure a lot of it is my inexperience and a need for practice, but it does keep me frustrated when I don't get the kind of look I was aiming for. And that's where watercolor patterned paper is perfect. I can get the specific look I'm going for, but also dress it up with stamps or splatters to make it look unique.

Saturday, February 6, 2021

Thank You Cookies


I have been into cooking and baking lately. I love baking- it's something I've enjoyed for years. But I always find myself with too little time or too little energy to bake regularly. A few years ago, I bought a cookbook with recipes I really wanted to try, but it's been sitting on a shelf since then. My plan when I bought it was to make every single recipe in the book (just like Julie and Julia!), and then life got in the way.

As I'm - in general - trying to make more time for things that I want to do, I am thinking of pulling out that cookbook and making some recipes. Not all of them and no more than a new recipe per month, but a small goal sounds like fun. And who knows, maybe I'll discover a few new recipes to add to my Christmas cookie list.

Thursday, February 4, 2021

Kindness and appreciation


Today is another card practice day - keeping things simple and testing out some pattern and color combinations. I'm a visual person and the first thing that I'm drawn to is color. I prefer colors that are vivid and saturated, or warm and rich. I like pastels quite a bit too. I think I'm at my happiest and most inspired when I see photos and images with interesting color combinations.

Sometimes this visual inspiration translates into a card. Sometimes it just becomes an image in my head that inspires creative writing or even a creative solution to a problem I might be facing. The way our minds work is mysterious, but I'm always on the lookout for something new that will push me to keep trying.

Tuesday, February 2, 2021

Birthday Bear


Today is my brother's birthday, so I thought I'd share a birthday card. Birthday cards are the type of card I make the most, and yet I still never have enough of them. If I do decide to focus on a theme one of these months, I think it will be a Birthday theme. I certainly could use a bigger selection of birthday cards, not to mention completely cute and snuggly critters are perfectly at home on a birthday card - even when it's a card for a grown up.

I feel like I'm getting closer to putting up some personal challenges again, but I am trying to take it slow. I like the focus that I get from taking on a challenge, as it can make me more productive. The downside is that it does create some pressure and I really need to take things slow and easy, still. I may do some brainstorming and see what I can come up with.

Sunday, January 31, 2021

Pink Winter Thanks


With this card, I'm wrapping up the month of January. It's been an interesting month in terms of creativity. I seem to have made things in bursts - producing a bunch at once, then taking a step back and making nothing for a while. It feels random and chaotic, but it still yielded results. I've got enough cards to take me well into February.

I think I would prefer something a little more constant. A couple of cards per week instead of 15 on the weekend... I'm still figuring out my schedule and working out how to get it all done. It's not easy most days, but I'm a big believer in making time to do things instead of waiting for inspiration to strike and hoping I won't be doing anything else when it does. Because, let's face it... I'm always doing something else when the inspiration strikes...

Friday, January 29, 2021

Ice-Cream Dreams


And from winter, we jump straight into summer! It's cold, but I wanted to do something bright and summery. Thankfully, I had these elements all set and ready to go in my "to-be-used" stash, so it led to some quick card-making. It still felt a little odd to make a summer card when it's so chilly outside, but it did brighten up my day - and that's the best one could hope for.

I am currently bouncing back between wanting to do completely new and innovative things and wanting to go to what's tried-and true. There is a certain comfort you can only get when you're doing something familiar - it's like your body and mind are moving by themselves and you're free to just enjoy the uninterrupted flow of getting things done.

I'll probably be doing that a lot, moving from what I know to what I've never tried before -but I choose to see it as a dance and I intend to master every step.

Wednesday, January 27, 2021

Christmas Deer


I had mentioned in a previous post that I wanted to make at least one Christmas card every month, in hopes it will help build up my stash through the year. In previous years, I've found it really difficult to make cards off-season. It felt odd to make a winter card when it's a hundred degrees outside. But if there's one thing I've learned in 2020 is that it's important to be flexible and to let go of getting it ALL done at once. 

My goal of one Christmas card per month is not big- after all, it will only give me 12 cards at the end of the year, but that's plenty to tide me over if I end up not crafting at all during this year's holiday season. Most of my efforts for the year will be to be more gentle with myself and to strike a balance between my ambitions of what I want done and what I realistically can do given my current state. 

I am training myself to think smaller - a small goal that's achieved and even surpassed is a lot more satisfying than an ambitious goal that has to be dropped because it's too stressful.

Monday, January 25, 2021

Warm Heart Penguins


Today's card is more playing with the Doodlebug cut-apart elements. Though I actually have a few pieces of this patterned paper left, I'm pushing out of the comfort zone and using a completely different background, from a different manufacturer. 

I've been thinking lately that one of the ways I can use my existing supplies more effectively is to not be afraid of mixing things up. I would rarely venture out and combine manufacturers, be it for paper or stamps. But it really opens up a lot of creative freedom to not be limited to a specific set - especially when I have a lot of papers or stamps that have the same theme.

This is something I will be experimenting with more in the future. For now, I'll just take small steps toward more diversity.

Saturday, January 23, 2021

Simple Hello


Looking back through my old cards, I found that I used this exact stamp with a similar concept - using patterned paper as a way to anchor and incorporate the sentiment. I really like how it turned out and wanted to revisit it.

Sometimes it's fun to look back on my old cards for inspiration. Even if I use the exact concept and the same stamp, it can still look and feel different just by switching up a few of the other elements (like the background or the layout). Inspiration can really work in interesting and unexpected ways.

Thursday, January 21, 2021

Thank you Mush!


I found a little stamp set in my stash that had adorable flowers and mushrooms and I really wanted to use it. Although small, the pictures still worked great on a standard A2 card when colored in bright colors. Set against more neutral tones of patterned paper and cardstock, they pop and draw the eye in.

I also used some bits of paper and die-cuts that I pre-cut for a different project. It's always nice to use scraps of patterned paper for elements that would have otherwise gone to waste. I've been going through my dies recently and looking for smaller pieces I could use as patterned paper accents. There's a lot to work with! Especially with things like labels and border dies.

Tuesday, January 19, 2021

Warm Heart


Doodlebug paper pads sometimes have a cute cut-apart sheet that has little scenes that feature cute critters or even sentiments. I always want to include them on a card, but I'm often unsure how to incorporate them into the design without making the card seem too simple. So, I would set them aside until I could figure out what I wanted to do with them.

One of the things I've noticed is that I tend to overthink some of my creations. I find them to be too simple or too plain and then end up not sharing them. But I've realized that I'm being too hard on myself, especially given that the cards that I find to be "too simple" are cards that end up being an inspiration for someone out there (and they tell me about it, much to my delight!).

 So, I am going to make an effort to post these types of cards more, too. I will be dubbing them my practice cards, as they often end up being a project where I work out a layout, a color palette or embellishments that make the next card even better. I feel vulnerable sharing things that I'm not 100% happy with, but I think it's important to normalize imperfection and share things that are a part of growth in the creative process and not just the end result.

Sunday, January 17, 2021

Sending Love


At the end of 2019, I had spent a couple of weeks coloring and fussy-cutting some wintry images with the thought that I would make holiday cards throughout the year (and not be overwhelmed again when holiday season rolls around, as I inevitably get each year). I didn't make any holiday cards in 2020 - with the exception of a small "thank you" set I gave away as a gift.

Having pre-colored and precut elements really makes card-making faster, and I didn't want my hard work to go to waste. So, I'll try to incorporate the elements into cards throughout this year. They won't all be holiday cards - I want to challenge myself to use some elements in more general cards, such as birthday and thank you cards. But I hope to make at least one holiday card per month and get my Christmas card stash a little more bulky for the end of 2021.

This card combines some wintry animals with a few layers of patterned paper and die-cut panels. I like the combination of warm colors with the icy snow setting. I think it feels like a warm and cuddly winter hug.

Monday, January 11, 2021

Warm Hugs


The weather has been chilly lately, and that puts me in the mood to make some warm and fuzzy cards. I paired another pre-colored image with a watercolor panel I'd made and saved some time ago. I think it made an interesting palette.

I am still having a lot of fun with color and palettes. Pairing up colors is always something I enjoy, especially when it's an unusual combination.

Saturday, January 9, 2021

Thank you


Lately, I've been going through some of my supplies and reorganizing them for easier use. I like to periodically reorganize some of my supplies because it reminds me of all that I already have. As an added bonus, I often find bits and pieces that inspire me to create a new card (or two).

I'm not up to tackling any challenges and large goals quite yet, but I can focus on using my supplies more. I've found that brings me a lot of joy, lately, and is less overwhelming than trying to shop and use only the new goodies.

Thursday, January 7, 2021

Big Shark Smile


There's something about a big toothy smile that is perfect to include on a happy card. It's one of the reasons why I absolutely love this shark stamp set and why it's fun to pair up with any smile or birthday stamp. 

I'm still working through my colored images and organizing them to use on cards. Another thing I'm contemplating is using some card sketches to try out different layouts and to make use of my (many) pieces of patterned paper.

Tuesday, January 5, 2021

Thanks Bear


There's always a need for thank you cards, and they're probably my favorite kind of card to make (and the kind of card I make the most often). Any kind of scene can fit a thank you card, be it playful/cute or subdued and solemn.

For this card, I went with something simple - maybe even fitting a melancholy mood of a winter scene. I have a little box full of images I colored in the past that have yet to find a home on a card. I'm going to try and use them on the next few cards I make, as they make for some quicker cards.

Sunday, January 3, 2021

Sending hugs


 2020 has been a rough year, both personally and for the world as a whole. The majority of this past year has been focused on staying safe and healthy. And though creativity is good for reducing stress, card-making was just more than I could handle most days.

I spent most of 2020 journaling. Not in the pretty kind of art journals that are worthy being shared, but the "let me get this on a page and out of my mind" stream of consciousness writing that kept me sane on most days. The only decision I had to make was which colored pen to use that day.

Things are still not great, but they're slowly getting a little better. So, I'm easing my way back into creativity and slowly getting back into card-making. It won't be on a regular schedule most of the time, but at least I am making the effort of using my supplies again.

Here's to 2021 being a good year.

Thanks for reading!