The theme for this month's Card Swap was Christmas in July. Now I must confess that I was pretty unexcited about this theme because I find it hard enough to make up a design when I need to for Christmas let alone when I have to make another lot as well! I actually did have a good idea but it really didn't happen for a couple of reasons. The first reason was that I wanted to use one of my sister's stamps and she wasn't sure if she was going to end up using it for the workshop that she was designing. The second, and probably major reason, was that the only weekend I had to make all my card swap cards was the weekend that I ended up going away for, so needless to say last week I was trying to figure out how on earth I was going to get them made in time for Friday night!
In the end I ended up using a design that I already had four cards made of, so instead of having to make 11 in almost no time, I only had to make 7! The strange thing is that as soon as I was worried about making them all identical I kept on making errors, but I guess that is part of the good thing about hand made - everything is unique.
The workshop for this month was really good. My sister designed it herself and the idea was to give some out of the ordinary ideas for Christmas, so we made a gift box, the lid, and the bow to go on top, a gift card holder, a Christmas tag and a card. I am not sure if she is going to submit it to the company she works for or not, so I will see if she is happy for me to post them here or not. I will definitely be making the gift card holder again, because is such a good idea for those times when you get a gift card. It's made using an envelope so it is a very easy way to make something a bit mundane a little more special.
Some what unusually for me, I also made a card that wasn't for card swap this month! Shocking I know. Actually, originally I was just messing around trying a couple of new techniques that I learnt when we went to Paperific craft show last month. I bought a few different things to try and hadn't had time to play before now, but I really like the results of this one when I put it together.
The first technique is creating backgrounds using Twinkling H2Os, which are a watercolour type base that has a bit of a metallic sheen to it when it dries. You can also use these to colour images or like I have to create a background. The lady who we saw demonstrating it at the show has obviously had a lot of practice as she was able to just swish the brush over the paper using a couple of different colours and voila, fabulous even graduation of colour as a background. I have used three colours on this one, but I need to practice blending a little but I am relatively happy with it given that it was the first time I tried it!
Even though I am not that good a photographer, I am really happy that you can see a little bit of the shimmer, especially if you click on the image so that it enlarges, although if you do that you will also see a few bits of glitter that weren't heat set that I didn't rub off yet!
The second technique was using a new to me product called Heat Set Glue. It comes in a white powder form, almost like embossing powder, but instead of becoming solid when it is heated, the glue powder melts, which then enables you to sprinkle glitter over the glue. You then heat it again and the glue sets with the glitter inside it, so your glitter is stuck fast to the card and will not just brush off. So now I have the option of either embossing to get texture, or using the heat set glue to get a really glittery image!
I have used these dragon fly stamps before because I just love them, and I am sure that you will see them again at some point, maybe even in a similar fashion to these.
I am very excited about a new stamp set that I just received yesterday, but I am going to play with those a little before I unveil those!
My big challenge this month is to make a cool and groovy 40th birthday card for a friend. I have an idea but a lot of times I have trouble translating the idea into actuality! I will also need to make a male card for the next card swap so I will be off trawling the net looking for some inspiration. It is so much easier to make girls cards!