Thursday, February 26, 2009

It's the Luck of the Irish, doncha know

While shopping for groceries last week, my son wanted to buy a box of Lucky Charms cereal because there was a car inside as a prize. After putting away the box, it ocurred to me that he was my lucky charm, thus giving me the idea for this card. I stamped the letters using the KI Memories Alpha stamps and the Studio G St. Pat's Day acrylic stamps. The rainbow was created using colored embossing markers and puffy paint on the clouds. The hat was colored using Derwent Metallic colored pencils--it is a little hard to see the shading. While I was at it, I did several charms including a pint of ale and a pot of gold. You will see those on another card. The swirl is from Little Yellow Bicycle. To achieve the pseudo rainbow, I tore a piece of paper and used the edge to create my pattern and using a stipple brush, applied the various ink colors. I did not matte the rainbow, it has been applied directly to the card front.

Keeping with the tradition of St. Patrick's Day I'd like to share this information from

The Chicago River

Chicago is also famous for a somewhat peculiar annual event: dyeing the Chicago River green. The tradition started in 1962, when city pollution-control workers used dyes to trace illegal sewage discharges and realized that the green dye might provide a unique way to celebrate the holiday. That year, they released 100 pounds of green vegetable dye into the river—enough to keep it green for a week!

Today, in order to minimize environmental damage, only forty pounds of dye are used, making the river green for only several hours. Although Chicago historians claim their city 's idea for a river of green was original, some Savannah natives believe the idea originated in their town.

They point out that 1961, Savannah mayor Tom Woolley had plans for a green river, but due to rough water on March 17, the experiment didn 't work and Savannah never attempted to dye its river again.

Don't let that happen to you. Always use your dyes and Inks in the Name of Love.
Until then.

Monday, February 23, 2009

Mardi Gras/Fat Tuesday

There is so much happening at this time of the year that it is hard to keep track of it all. In addition to this being Black History Month, we also recognize and celebrate Mardi Gras. I remember the first time I attended in New Orleans. It was spectacular. I made a point to return every year after that. I was able to attend a Mobile, Alabama, Mardi Gras. I liked the intimate feel that this one provided. Everyone knew everyone. My attendance ended when I moved to California. In honor of Mardi Gras I thought I would provide a little background on the holiday. This information came from
The image is

Mardi Gras (from the French words, meaning "fat Tuesday"), or Carnival (from the Latin words carn-caro levare, meaning "removal of flesh"), is a Christian festival that embodies many traditions that originated with the ancient Greeks and Romans--relating to their gods and religious festivals honoring spring fertility rites.

In the early Middle Ages, the Catholic Church was unable to abolish all of these ancient traditions after converting pagan tribes to Christianity. The Church was forced to adapt many ancient feasts and festivals, originally celebrated in honor of pagan gods, to Christian beliefs. Today, revelers on parade floats still don the regalia of the Greek god of wine, Bacchus, during Mardi Gras celebrations.

Also known as "fat Tuesday," this pre-Lenten festival is celebrated in Roman Catholic countries and communities. In a strict sense, Mardi Gras, or Shrove Tuesday, is celebrated by the French as the last of the three days of Shrovetide and is a time of preparation immediately before Ash Wednesday and the start of the fast of Lent. Mardi Gras is thus the last opportunity for merrymaking and indulgence in food and drink. In practice, the festival is generally celebrated for one full week before Lent. Mardi Gras is marked by spectacular parades featuring floats, pageants, elaborate costumes, masked balls, and people dancing in the streets.

Mardi Gras originated as one of the series of carnival days held in all Roman Catholic countries between Twelfth Night, or Epiphany, and Ash Wednesday; these carnivals had their origin in pre-Christian spring fertility rites. The most famous modern Mardi Gras festivities are those held in New Orleans, La.; Rio de Janeiro, Brazil; Nice, France; and Cologne, Germany.

The first American Mardi Gras was celebrated near modern-day New Orleans on March 3, 1699. It wasn't until the mid-1800s did official parade organizations start to form with the Mystick Krewe of Comus in 1856 and the Krewe of Rex in 1872. The tradition is still carried on in New Orleans with many other krewes represented on floats in a myriad of parades.

The official colors of Mardi Gras are purple, green and gold (representing justice, faith and power). Mardi Gras celebrations can start as early as January 6, on the feast of Epiphany. The festivities end at midnight on Tuesday--the day before Ash Wednesday and the beginning of Lent. Mardi Gras day falls on any Tuesday between February 3 and March 9. Like Ash Wednesday, the date Mardi Gras falls on depends on the date of Easter--always occurring 46 days before Easter.

Is it any wonder that I LOVE celebrating Mardi Gras. It is vivid, filled with energy and passion, and every color of the rainbow. It resembles Ink come to life. Definitely qualifies for Inking in the Name of Love.

Until then.

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Happy Valentine's Day

Happy Valentine's Day. It has been a whirlwind one for me. My car had to be taken to the auto doctor for diagnoses and repair. The bill is going to be whopping. There is a little solace from the deal. The company loaned me a beautiful 2009 Acura TL. I am SPOILED. On board GPS, XM Radio, Keyless start up, power everything. Oh, to live the good life.

Back to business. I wanted to post a card that pays homage to the men in our lives. They don't always want frills so I went with classic red, black and white.

I stamped the hearts on red mulberry paper and ran the black through the Cuttlebug inside the Swirls embossing folder. I then used the deckle edge scissors to trim. I used clear Versamark, clear embossing powder and used the heat gun to get a glossy look. On the bottom black mat I used the Fiskars hearts texture plate with Versamark and powder. The valentine's ribbon is from Michael's. The red mat is from Hot Off The Press Paper Pizazz Solid Jewel Tones. And lastly I grabbed a few rhinestones to give the hearts a bit of sparkle.
Enjoy. It is hard to believe what a difference the clear embossing ink over versamark made to plain, matte, black cardstock. It is so much fun to Ink in the Name of Love.

From my heart to yours on Valentine's Day.

Until then.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

From My Heart to Yours

It is almost time for Cupid to makes his rounds and shoot his arrow--yup, Valentine's Day. Hopefully if you are seeking love you will find it, and if you have love, you will cherish every moment of it.

As my son, Zachary, and I were sitting down writing out cards for his classmates, it occurred to me that I needed to post something here in honor of love.
I hope you can see the embossing on the hearts.

The materials I used include the heart acrylic stamp from Basic Grey and the quote from Little Yellow Bicycle. The ribbon is called Dots & Stripes purchased from Michael's. Cardstock: Pink flowers from EK Success Simply Classic Inspirables Feminine Delight (INSC003), Chocolate mat is American Traditional Designs Textured Paper, Cream mat is Bazzill String of Pearls.

Inks: Chocolate Pigment Ink is Anna Griffin--All Night Media Plaid (19ACH) and Pink is from Ink it Up! The button and brads are JoAnn and the flowers are from Prima-Got Flowers?

After stamping the hearts I realized they did not have any pizzaz to them. I cut them out and used the Tsukineko #81 clear embossing pen to trace over the brown ink. I then dipped them into my Tsukineko #05 Clear Embossing powder and the used the heat gun. I adhered the two side hearts and then used three pop dots on the center heart--adding the ribboned button.
I wanted to add ink to the Bazzill card but needed a soft look. I used my cosmetic wedge to apply ink working my way onto the card using a circular motion. I did the same for the card base.

After adhering the ribbon to the cream base, I used glue dots to secure it to the Chocolate mat. I then used my Glue Glider Pro Permatac to secure the entire collage to the card base. Adding the pink helped to achieve the right look.

This one is a just because I love you card. I wanted something that was not totally feminine and wanted to think outside of the box. Hmmm...I think I might have to go back and ink the edges of this card with chocolate or pink.

It is sometimes hard to believe what a difference a little ink makes. Whether you purchase your cards from a local store or create your own try adding a little ink somewhere unexpected--helping you to Ink in the Name of Love. Wishing you all of the best From My Heart to Yours.

Until then.

Monday, February 9, 2009

Something Old is New Again

While doing more organizing, I came across a card that I stamped about seven years ago. I was creating sets for myself and had a blast doing so. This is one of my early attempts at cardmaking. I thought I would post a pic here.

The stamp is from PSX K-2291 (Stamp Exchange). I only wanted to use one of the images and repeat it, so I masked off the others. That is the one thing I LOVE about stamps, the versatility.

I used Marvy Uchida markers to color the flowers and black ink and clear embossing powder for the quote--Stampendous L062

Sorry that it is a little blurry. I was trying to take this photo at night. If I get a chance I will shoot another and repost. I used a variety of inks to sponge the background. It is something inspiring that I can send in the mail for encouragement to someone in need.

If you are a stamper, think of how you can take stamps that you already own and mask off parts of it to create something new. Something old will definitely be new again. If you are a beginning stamper, select stamps that will offer versatility and you will get more for your dollar. As always, Ink in the Name of Love and you can never go wrong.

Until then.

Sunday, February 8, 2009

Storing Acrylic Stamps

It is hard to believe that the weekend has come to an end. Today was a beautiful one here in Northern Virginia albiet, it was a bit windy. My son and I spent much of the day outside and when inside, playing board games. In between time, I did manage to capture a few shots of how I am now storing my frequently used acrylic stamps. I had a few frames that I had purchased from Michael's years ago that I had planned to use for some of my layouts I could not bare to lock away into albums. That has been at least five years and they were still empty. So, I thought why not use them for my acrylic stamps and viola, here they are. I have four frames total.

I was able to get several sets of stamps on clearance that were not laser cut. Don't let that scare you off from purchasing. Just use a good pair of scissors (I love the yellow CutterBee ones) and trim off the excess.

There is also a piece of plastic that you will need to remove.
Arrange the stamps with prestamped images or your own stamped images on the paper that came with the frame. I also record the manufacturer, set name and/or ID number on the sheet.

Place the plastic (mine is not glass) cover inside the frame, then the backing sheet of prestamped images and finally the back cover. Take your acrylic stamps and place them over the corresponding image on top of the plastic. Cover with clear acetate sheet that came with the images. Hang and enjoy. When you are ready for a stamp, lift off the acetate cover of that stamp, take the stamp, use it, clean it, and return it. You might find that you use them more, I do.

I am not concerned about light exposure, as I can control it very well in this room. If I plan to work for hours on end (yeah, right) then I would simply tape a piece of craft paper over the frame.
I still have lots of other acrylic stamps stored in CD cases. These on the walls are easier to see at a glance and are frequently used. Here is to hoping that you find new ways to repurpose what you already have and to always Ink in the Name of Love.

Until then.

First Blog Entry

Wow. Today, Saturday, February 7, 2009 is a momentous day. I have finally come kicking and screaming into the 21st Century. It all started with FaceBook. Now, I am the proud owner of my own blog. For someone who loves the computer and uses it as a tool, I find it hard to explain why I have not blogged before now. Learn from me that it is never too late to get started on a great idea. While I cannot promise that I will post everyday, I can definitely commit to a few days a week.

I love creating and especially papercrafting and using ink. This versatile medium has been around for ages and has been used to create all kinds of allusions. When you see a long-eared, big-eyed puppy dog, your heart opens. A mountain of ice cream draped in melting chocolate and crowned with plump pitted cherries makes your mouth water. Lying on a hammock as a light breeze blows the leaves on the trees brings to mind relaxation. It is the stamping and inking of these images that connects one person to the other. It is my hope that you will Ink in the Name of Love and create some allusions of your own.

It is late, and I am too worn out to do much of anything else. I hope you will return to share in the goodies that I plan to post.
Until then.