24 June, 2022

Ukraine inspired

I've been crafting in blue and yellow again, creating another card to go with a care package for a Ukrainian refugee. I worked on a gender neutral card from the beginning, as I didn't know whether I'd place it in a male or female box of everyday items. In the end, I decided to send it to a man, but first things first.
My main inspiration for the card came from "Чорнобаївка" - a song by the Ukrainian band Spiv Brativ that was published during the first weeks of the war. Or rather, in the video accompanying it. What sounds strange at first refers to a small sequence of the video that features blue and yellow waves in the background, creating a nice transition of Ukrainian colours. Upon seeing them, I immediately thought about recreating those waves in form of paper strips in order to make a card similar to said background. 
Said and done: I took every blue and yellow paper from my stash, sorting them by shade and pattern to see how many I can find. Since I wanted each strip to be visible, I figured they should measure around 1 cm in width. I then removed papers that looked very similar, but still had plenty of choice, meaning I'd have to expand my card base from a regular one to slimline. Still, I had to remove some more sheets until I ended up with 10 blues and 10 yellows. Their range goes from very dark to very light, and features patterned papers as well as monochrome ones, plain ones and embossed ones. 
Once I managed to align the papers, I cut a 1 cm wide piece of each sheet, which would basically create a transition that goes from one side of my slimline card to the other, with a bit of white card base on each end. When it came to gluing the pieces on the card base, my project became a mess. I thought I'd help myself by holding the pieces in place by using scotch tape, pla
cing it across the front side of my gradient sketch in order to remove them one by one as I would be proceeding with my card. 
However, I picked the wrong one from my dresser, meaning: what I thought was removable scotch tape, turned out to be the adhesive one. Ooops! And I couldn't just use the other side of the stripes as some of the papers had different patterns on the back, which would mess with my idea of a gradient. Silly me! I managed to get the pieces off in the end, but it resulted in a couple of tears, which is why I had to replace a few stripes. Once that was done, I fixed the stripes again, using removable scotch tape. From there on, my work was a piece of cake: I placed the stripes on my slimline card base one by one, and when that was done, I added a printed sentiment saying "Welcome" in the middle of my creation using 3D pads. 
I've picked quite a prominent size for the message, but I had to make sure this square will be able to compete with the ones in the background. To enhance the sentiment, I placed it on a piece of golden cardboard. I think gold in this case creates a nice connection between blue and yellow, without putting too much emphasis on the yellow side even though it's very similar to the yellow shades. Also, I think it adds a bit of elegance because, well, it's gold. 
On the other hand, the golden stickers on the upper and lower edge of the card were added out of necessity: Even though I made sure to cut all stripes in the same width and length, some ended up being a bit longer than others. We're talking about fractions of a millimeter here, but enough to create a bit of up-and-down which irritated me. To create an even line, I covered those ends with a tiny golden sticker - tiny enough to go basically unnoticed, but effective enough to get rid of the nuisance I had with the strips. 
Since the card still seemed to be missing something, I had a look at my embellishments. I didn't want to add flowers or butterflies on it, since I wanted the entire focus on that colour gradient. However, I picked a couple of blue and yellow pearls and placed them randomly across the colourful background. I like the 3D effect they create, and I especially like that I managed to use those huge pearls which usually remain in my stash after I use the smaller ones. I hardly ever create projects that would require the big pearls, but I think they came handy in this one. 

challenges: 
krafty chicks: all occasions
as you like it: feminine or masculine (I definitely create more female projects, but I think I'd still say that I prefer male ones as they're more of a challenge to me. When I need some time off to relax, I'll usually end up making something girly, however, creating something for a man is like a brain tease to me: is that paper OK or should I keep looking for something better? Would that be too much of an embellishment? How many flowers are acceptable, and how many pearls are too many? I'll never ask myself these questions when creating for a female, and I need challenges like this to keep krafting interesting.)
crafty calendar: ATG 
crafty catz: ATG
fabnfunky: summer colours
moving along with the times: masculine/father's day
path of positivity: ATG with optional twist "celebrate something special about your hero" (I'll not go with a specific hero in my mind here, but the heroism of the Ukrainian people in general - yes, the war may have disappeared from the front pages, but people are still defending their land and their freedom, dying on the front lines, having their homes destroyed and their loved ones killed, being internally displaced or living the life of refugees somewhere in Europe... I can not begin to imagine what the people of Ukraine are going through, and I truly wish they'll be given every form of support they need to preserve their country and rebuild it so it can prosper again.)
pennys papertake: ATG

17 June, 2022

Friendship

Another Friday, another challenge over at the Alphabet challenge blog. Our theme this fortnight is "Friendship", which should be an easy task for you to play along. And since I'm sure you'll come up with tons of ideas, I'll come straight to the point with my DT inspiration.
I created a simple "Just because" card for my friend during her internship - a little reminder to take a breath and hold on during tough days and endless nights in the hospital. 
If the card seems familiar to you, it might as well be because you've kind of seen it before. The thing is, I wasn't planning on repeating myself, but since I entered the speed humour challenge back then, one of the requirements was to create something in under 10 minutes. However, I forgot to use the timer while making my first card - oops! The only way to find out how long it took me to create it was to create an identical card and keep an eye on the clock this time. Turns out I'd end up way above 10 minutes, which I mostly attribute to the colouring. But, hey, I got an extra card out of it!
Since I didn't want to end up with two identical cards, I opted for a little difference this time: instead of English, I printed a Slovene sentiment saying "Hold on". 

challenges: 
crafty calendar: ATG 
crafty catz: ATG with optional twist "add a sentiment"
inkspirational: use a digital element (digi)
little red wagon: digital element (digi)
morgans artworld: ATG
moving along with the times: masculine/father's day
pennys papertake: ATG

03 June, 2022

Just a note

I recently managed to disassemble the cover of an album of patterned papers by Nina Štajner. Unlike the patterned papers inside, it featured different animals that could be used as toppings. I decided to take whatever motif I could and use it for my cards. Since the paper was printed on both sides, I'd have to sacrifice some motifs in order to obtain others. Among different deer, squirrrels, rabbits and else, I cut out this tiny little robin. I've already created some cards featuring the cute critters which I'm going to show you soon, but my thoughts kept coming back to this little bird as if it wanted to be featured in one of my crafting projects, too. I had no idea how to use it since it was so small, but this cutie simply couldn't go to waste. 
In the end, I decided to place it onto a piece of embossed paper in order to create a very simple CAS card. To make sure the tiny motif doesn't get lost, I used a tiny card base. I also framed the little bird by placing it onto a piece of light brown paper. To bring the robin to life, I added a punched branch that was a leftover from another card I'll show soon. 
I refused to add any other embellishments such as pearls or a sentiment, because I think the card looks pretty just as it is. I have no idea where the bird will end up, but I can imagine it could be used as a little Christmas present, or one of those "Thank you" notes you add to a little present. Or maybe you have a different suggestion?

The embossed background is part of my DT inspiration over at the Alphabet challenge where "E" stands for "embossing". You may use wet or dry embossing on your creations in order to play along in our current challenge. And since there's nothing to say about my card anymore, I'll just add a couple of birds :)

challenges:
Christmas with the cuties: ATG cute Christmas
crafty catz: ATG
love to craft: ATG 
traumfabrik: Epic - a hidden kingdom (tiny forest creatures)

27 May, 2022

Welcome

Are we used to the war yet? After weeks of frontpage news, the fighting reports seem to have become a routine, and the world seems to have become indifferent to the agony of people who are suffering on a daily basis. I like to think that Ukrainians get all the help they need to defend their country, but I feel like we prefer the personal comfort of "not getting involved" over actively making decisions that require balls, a backbone, a brain, and a heart. 
I hope that help is coming at least to the refugees who have lost everything, whether they are internally displaced or living abroad. For one of the care packages I packed, I prepared a little "Welcome" card inspired by Ukrainian colours. 
For the main motif, I used a background paper with blue butterflies. Originally, I planned to complement it with a "Welcome" sentiment in Ukrainian which I had already placed on yellow cardboard. However, it turned out that the amount of yellow on the card was rather small, meaning it didn't shine like I imagined. To resolve the issue, I'd have to look for ways to make it more prominent.
In an attempt, I tried using a strip of yellow paper which is embossed with a butterfly/floral motif. It seemed like a good match to the blue butterflies in the background, so I decided to place it in the lower part of my card. Atop of it, I then placed the sentiment. I think the blue and yellow combination is now more like what I had in mind originally, with yellow being concentrated on the bottom of the card, just like it is in the Ukrainian flag.
To create a transition between both papers, I used a couple of stickers from my stash: the tiny flowers resemble blooms in the fields of wheat, while the shimmering butterflies float into the sky to join the blue insects in the background. I hope the fluttering creatures resemble the desire for sorrows to disappear, as well as the endless freedom I associate with butterflies and the sky - a freedom that shall soon come to the people of Ukraine. 
The card itself is pretty much gender-neutral as I couldn't decide whether I'll place it into a male or a female package until the last moment. I sent it to a female in the end, and hope it can bring a sense of being welcome in a land far from home. 

challenges:
krafty chicks: all occasions
crafty calendar: ATG 
crafty catz: ATG with optional twist "all about the girls"
creative moments: ATG with optional twist "summer's here"
intaas: say it with flowers
sparklesmonthlychallenges: floral frenzy
traumfabrik: Epic - a hidden kingdom (tiny forest creatures - butterflies)
through the craftroom door: ATG
unicorn challengeblog: include pearls/bling (shimmering butterflies)
use your stuff: a touch of gold (gold shimmer on the butterfly stickers)

20 May, 2022

Ice Ice Baby

Matching the warm temperatures outside, I'll show you a summer-inspired card set today for my DT inspiration over at the Alphabet challenge blog. Our theme this fortnight is "die cuts", which should be an easy one if you have die cuts and a cuttlebug in your stash. None of which I have. Meaning, I'd have to either get as close as possible to the challenge theme by using punches, or improvise.
I picked the latter and searched the internet for die cut inspirations I could copy without actually using die cuts. The idea was to find one that would be easy enough to copy/imitate and still give a decent result. In the ends, I found this absolutely adorable popsicle over at Mavelu and gave it a try. 
I copied the outline on a patterned paper featuring a pink/orange arrangement of hippie flowers. The idea was to create a fun popsicle which I'd then place on a white background. I picked an embossed background to make it more interesting, and used a layer of orange cardboard in the background. The motif was then placed onto a kraft card base, and decorated with a couple of shimmering pearls. 
Since I liked the outcome so much, I immediately created another card using green hippie flowers this time.
I also had a look at my paper stash to find more papers that would look great as popsicles, and might start a little ice cream production soon :)
I decided to go against a sentiment in order to make the card suitable for different occasions. I'm not sure where it will end up, but it looks perfect for a child's birthday, a picknick, a pool party, or just a summer-ish "Hello" for a friend. 

challenges: 
krafty chicks: CAS
allsorts challengeblog: add some sparkle
as you like it: favourite food (given the warm temperatures outside, I'll go for ice cream on this one. We would only get it for special occasions as children, so it remains to be a treat even now that I can get it myself anytime I want. I like the cold refreshment ice brings during hot summer months, and will explore unfamiliar flavours to discover new favourite combinations. I'll get myself a popsicle from the supermarket when it gets really hot outside and I'm not home, but I have my absolute favourite in form of a little Italian ice cream parlor in my hometown and I will rather go without ice cream than "betray" them by buying it somewhere else. Because nothing is better than handmade, homemade Italian ice cream without any artificial additives. Among all the classics, they'll make sure to offer unique flavours on a daily basis, meaning one day it will be pear or persimmon, next day peach with basil or maybe raspberry with rosemary. I like how every trip becomes a surprise, literally, because you never know what will be on display.)
basteltraum: summer
can you handle the pressure: embossing with a twist "flowers"
crafty calendar: ATG 
crafty catz: ATG
creative moments: ATG with optional twist "summer's here"
double D challenges: monochromatic
intaas: 3 of something (3 shimmering pearls)
little red wagon: friends
love to craft: ATG 
morgans artworld: ATG
moving along with the times: birthday
path of positivity: celebrate something special about your friends (I'm not a spontaneous person in general and will prefer quality over quantity when it comes to friends, meaning I could maybe come up with a handful of friends if I try hard. On the positive side, I know that these friendships are true no matter what, and the best thing about them is that we can be ourselves, help each other, be serious and lift each other up, as well as have fun and just enjoy the moment.)
pennys papertake: ATG
scrapping4fun: ATG
sparklesmonthlychallenges: floral frenzy

17 May, 2022

Coffee

I felt like creating a challenge card last night, namely trying to catch the deadline of the "coffee" challenge over at craft-alnica. I've had a coffe themed paper in my stash for too long, and finally managed to make use of it. 
I've put on some music in the background, and went to work.
Cutting four squares from the patterned cardboard, I placed them onto a kraft card base. Instead of embellishments, I decided to take four brown papers from my stash, and matched the different shades of brown with the coffee motives. 
The card has a rather simple layout, but I think it might come handy for a simple occasion, even for a masculine card.
On the inside, I placed a piece of white paper, which I glued onto a brown patterned paper. The pattern isn't visible well, but it shines through enough to see subtile hexagons which in my opinion resemble coffee beans. 

challenges: 

06 May, 2022

Cars

Another Friday means we're having a new challenge prepared for you over at the Alphabet challenge blog. Our theme this fortnight is "Cars" which should be an easy one. 
I've been quite busy in the  past week, preparing packages for Ukrainian refugees. I can't help thinking that while we're still being updated on every missile fired, the great outrage has calmed down. Words cannot describe how wrong it feels to debate whether sanctions will hurt a bit while people are suffering immensly on a daily basis. I don't have any illusions that a box of diapers, shower gel and a couple of towels will make a difference, but I certainly hope that it will make somebody's stay far away from home a bit easier, even if just for a moment. And to my surprise, I realized that I can still find comfort in crafting if it consists of creating little gifts to add to the packages. Again, if I manage to bring a little feeling of being welcome in a strange country, I'll count it as a success. 
However, being busy otherwise means that I didn't have any extra time left for my DT task, which is why I opted for a very simple bookmark. 
On one side, it features a strip of a car-themed paper, which you've seen in some of my previous projects. I placed it onto a dark blue cardboard, which goes nicely with the blue F1 car. 
On the back, I decided to place another piece of patterned paper. I think it was supposed to resemble the sky, but I like how the pattern of clouds isn't that prominent, which enables me to use it on many different non-sky projects. It might seem a bit empty at first glance, but I intentionally left it that way at the moment. Once the bookmark will have a recipient, I plan to write their name with alphabet stickers to create a personalized bookmark.