Wednesday, September 11, 2019

Winners from Unity’s GIU Week

Thank you all for your kind remarks. So much appreciated! The winners from my week are:




I need your names and addresses ASAP please so we can mail out your stamps. Please email me at:

Thanks again for the love and support!

Saturday, September 7, 2019

Friends of Unity September Blog Hop

Welcome to September’s Friends of Unity Blog Hop focused on Autumn Colors! Be sure to welcome our new talented members: Dawn Bryson and Alaine Tanner! So happy they joined us!

This blog hop offers giveaway goodies. To be eligible, please leave a comment on each blog in the hop. Winners are randomly selected and posted on or by the next month’s blog hop.

So I created a girl and her truck cards, and, in both cases incorporated a tweedy embossed paper I created with oxide inks and Primary Elements Ginger pigment. For the girl, I used Unity’s Constance Girl, some Bo Bunny’s Farmers Market paper and a sentiment from the Bountiful Haul Kit. I paper pieced her blouse and scarf and colored the rest with Prismacolor pencils.

For the second card, her truck, I used Bountiful Haul and the same paper. Again colored with Prismacolor pencils. Sure wish cars would go back to vibrant colors instead of the white, black, red, silver and gold tones! So this is my way to get there!

Reminder: we are not sponsored by Unity Stamp Co., but they do approve of this hop. We are big fans of this company and enjoy focusing on monthly themes where we can showcase their products! We use our own stash as giveaways to as inspiration. Hope you enjoy these efforts as much as we enjoy doing them! If you are interested in following my art journey, click on follow or enter your email address!

Now, on to the hop!

- You are here -

Friday, September 6, 2019

Growing in Unity Day Five

Wow, finally reached the end of the week! Hope you enjoy this last day! Today, the backgrounds are created with ... drum roll, please, ... embossing folders!  One is a 3D Texture Spellbinders (oh, btw, I bought 2, so if someone wants to pay the shipping, they can have my extra) and a Tim Holtz folder.

I started the first card by laying down Evergreen Bough, Gathered Twigs, and Rusty Hinge oxides on my craft mat, one at a time, spritzing with water and dipping the paper into it. I think I might have dried it a little in between colors. I then sprinkled some Primary Elements Ginger on the mat, added water and dipped it again. While the paper was still damp I used the 3D folder. Damp paper allows the fibers to stretch versus tear in a folder. I took a clear embossing ink pad and ran it over the raised layers and used white embossing powder on it. I stamped some more of the colors on my pad and added watercolor to enhance the indented areas. I have to say I was a little concerned picking this folder up at Tuesday Morning.... but, now, I am in love with it!

Next, I stamped a butterfly I received in a Unity grab bag, I think it came from the Butterfly Beauty Kit, using a clear ink again. This time, I sprinkled a copper embossing powder in the middle of the butterfly and a Ranger’s Sage on the outer ends of the wings. It’s not perfectly embossed but that just makes it fit in with the edgy background better. I then used my watercolors to add color to the butterfly. After fussy cutting each component out, as the butterfly image is not whole, I decided I needed to make it stand out more against the beautiful background. So I, again, clear embossed the image this time on vellum using the copper powder. I trimmed the colored image parts down and adhered them onto the vellum, allowing the copper edges to show! I added pen marks on the edges of the wings. I fussy cut the whole butterfly out of the vellum paper. I loved the look, so I mounted that on the embossed paper.

To go with this more mixed media style card, I decided to use a sentiment from the Today is a Lovely Day Kit. This time I embossed the sentiment using a beautiful Seth Apter powder that is teal colored with copper bits in it and added some color to that strip. I added a stenciled border around the plain blue card base with a coppery brown Nuvo paste. To complete the card, I added matching ribbon and and crystals. Hope you like this one... I’m in love with this card right now!

I started the second card using the same color scheme I used Day One. Besides the Prima flowers, I had picked up a beautiful silvery holographic ephemera kit that coordinated with the Prima Flirty Fleur pad. Just love those mint colors. I stamped colors on my mat, again, that I thought would match and after spritzing water picked up the colors on my paper (same as above). This time I sprayed the paper with a silver Brutus Monroe paint. I immediately embossed the paper and painted the raised edges with a silver watercolor from my Gansai Tambi Set.

I then took the couple from the Have and Hold 4/19 KOTM and stamped that with grey archival ink. I carefully watercolored the image using a Daniel Smith swatch set in similar colors (some have a sheen to them). I covered the veil with a light wash of the Art C clear glitter ink and added white pen streaks and dots. Finally, before embossing the sentiment, I created a small powder mixture of black, grey and the sparkly embossing powder I used on the mermaid. It worked perfectly to give the sentiment, from the same KOTM, a soft sparkly dark grey look.

To finish the card, I added a soft sparkle base layer, ephemera, a flower, string, coordinating Prima crystals and die cut silver frames. This card was designed for a special couple’s wedding in October.

Well, today’s my last day and I hope you enjoyed this week. Remember to leave a comment on each day for a chance to win one of the 2 random 25 stamp gifts.

Thursday, September 5, 2019

Growing In Unity Day Four

Hello again... it’s day 4! Remember to comment on each day this week for your chance to win 25 random stamps from Unity Stamp Co.! This day is all about patterned paper. I love patterned paper and often use it as inspiration for making my own paper, but in this case, I used it to enhance and complement beautiful Unity images.

On the first card, I used stamps from the beautiful Beauty Beyond Words Kit, and, because of the butterflies, combined it with the L’aquarelle Designs paper. I used a combo of Distress Oxides, a little Ginger Primary Elements, and the light blue color from the Gansai Tambi watercolor kit to match the paper colors. After painting the images, I embossed the sentiment on a die cut sheet from the same kit. I used a smaller die to cut another sheet and used a background stamp from a SMAK kit just to make it blend in with the base layer paper. Added ribbon, twine and crystals and fussy cut a blue butterfly from the leftover scrap paper. Love the soft feeling I get from this card.

For the second card, I used the flower stamp from the Hanging Botanicals and combined it with a sentiment from the Dream of Being Kit. Prima’s Poetic Rose paper pad reminded me of this stamp so I used the color scheme and papers from the pad to build the card. I stamped the image onto one of the papers and used Prismacolor pencils on it. I decided to fussy cut it out as I wanted to use a paper with a pinker background and more details. Since this is a larger card, I created strips from the paper for the card base. For embellishment, I fussy cut one of the flower vases as well and used a butterfly from a Poetic Rose ephemera pack. I added crystal dots and ribbon and called the card done!

Phew... only 1 more day! I know none of these techniques I used over the last 4 days are new to you, but, I hope they’ll inspire you to retry a technique you haven’t used in awhile! See you tomorrow for another older but goodie technique with a twist!

Wednesday, September 4, 2019

Growing In Unity Day Three

Today, I chose to create a watercolor background wash with designs and used a Prima Wild and Free paper as inspiration. I had only planned to do one card... and ended up with 4 because I didn’t care for the first 3, but, I used them anyway! I used the You Are Forever Beautiful Kit and ended up combining it with sentiments from Hanging Botanicals, the 6/19 SMAK kit and a grab bag. The background stamps used were from the 12/18 SMAK kit, Make Today kit, Vintage Ledger and a background stamp from an older KOTM Kit.

So, as I stated, I tried this 4 times, changing up what I did each time to fix my issues and when I wasn’t satisfied, started up the next. I started the first 3 by stamping the image in red, then, in black and then, in brown archival inks and finally adding a color wash using a combo of Distress and Oxide inks. The last card I started by color washing the whole paper and stamping the image after... I finally learned it was easier to do when the image is busier. I painted the flowers on the first 2 using distress inks and Prima Metallic watercolors. I wasn’t happy with the metallic colors and had to darken the edges again with pens. In painting the 3rd image, I wasn’t happy with the paper I chose. On the first 3, I highlighted or low lighted around the images with either brown paint or watercolor pencils or white watercolor paint to highlight the flowers. Finally, I added the background stamp to each card. I decided to mount each one with minimal fuss, sometimes using the Prima paper, feeling the “Don’t give up just yet.” sentiment that I used on one. Made a tag and fussy cut a bouquet for another. 

Frustrated and having a hard time sleeping after that, I decided to try one more time. Used much better paints and watercolor paper. I really wanted to create a special birthday card for a very special friend’s birthday (from grammar school). She’s been struggling a bit so included a special message from the Your Life is Your Story Kit and another grab bag sentiment. I used the Prima paper for the background and even fussy cut one of the roses out. I am very pleased with how this one turned out and hope she likes it too!

Well, what can I say, if you don’t succeed, try, try again! Can you spell stubborn? I included the fails as I know we’ve all been there, but I think they still might be okay in a pinch! On to another option for tomorrow. Remember to comment on each day’s entry for a chance to win a Unity Grab Bag!


Tuesday, September 3, 2019

Growing In Unity Day Two

Going in a completely different direction, today, I decided to have some fun with Washi tape backgrounds (need to use some of this stuff up!). I had picked up some pretty Park Lane and Firefly rolls and started to think about my Unity stash, and Voila! I found some pretty good matches.

I started by first pulling out a piece of lightweight cardstock cut down a bit. I layered some of the tapes diagonally across the entire sheet. I then trimmed off some of the excess and die cut the paper down. For this card, I pulled out the girl from the 4/17 KOTM kit and a sentiment from the 2/19 KOTM kit. After stamping her, I used watercolor pencils and some distress inks to color her face and hair. To match the shiny Washi tape, I used Nuvo Shimmer Powders (the only 2 I own). These powders are very shimmery and can be multi colored if you don’t combine the grains. I ended up sprinkling some of both and spraying with water around the portrait. (Although, I did mute it after with white acrylic paint). I die cut her and created a frame out of gray paper that I also used to back the Washi paper. I completed the card by adding ribbon and die cut arrows. 

For the second card, I found an Ocean themed Washi set and paired that with the She Mermaid Kit.  This time to reduce the background competition (these tapes are very vibrant and have metallic silver bits), I staggered placing the Washi on the paper horizontally leaving white strips. Wanting the mermaid to stand out, I took a watercolor scrap and layered on some of the blue powder. I also added an ArtC Indigo ink and a Brea Reese Violet Glitter ink by tapping droplets onto the paper. I spritzed with water each time. I finally used a Wow Silver Glitter Embossing powder (never tried it before) and stamped just the tail part into the paper, fussy cutting it out after. I added more color to parts of the tail. I clear embossed the top half of her using black ink. I used the same powder and inks to add color and finally added a silver pen in spots. I combined her parts, embossed the sentiment, and added crystals and crystal flourishes to complete the card.

This was a fun exercise to do, and, again, I think, the backgrounds really set off the stamps nicely. Hope you liked this pair... see you tomorrow!

Monday, September 2, 2019

Growing In Unity Day One

A whole week... wow, where to start! Never having done this before, I decided to focus my creations each day this week using different background techniques. Might as well admit it, I’m terrible at CAS cards, so I’m going with my style preferences! Seemed to be a great way to show off the many varied wonderful Unity stamps I’ve hoarded, hmmm, that is, collected.

To start, I played with a gelli mat, acrylic paints, 2 stencils and texture plate, and a color scheme stolen from a Prima Marketing collection. I mixed the paints to get the colors I wanted as I went along. My process is roll the colors out I want, add a design by laying stencil on top and rolling different color over it, and then lay the cardstock on top of the plate to pick up the design. I kept changing colors and patterns and sometimes, just rolled paint onto stencil, and then placed paper directly on that. If I wasn’t happy with the paper, I would keep adding to it. At the end, I was ecstatic over the how well they turned out and how different they all looked. I took a video of the papers I created, which by the way, ended up drying flat. I used 3 of the papers (saving the rest for later).

For the first card I decided to use the edgy Better with Friends Kit. After stamping the flowers on watercolor paper I painted them using a Daniel Smith color swatch chart I had picked up. I ended up stamping the background script using Hickory Smoke Oxide ink and added paint splatters. I picked out the edgiest background to use. I then embossed the sentiment and fussy cut it out. I backed everything with black paper, added turquoise ribbon and funky sequins.

For the second card, I decided to paint the simple bouquet from the As We Go Along Kit. Again, I used the Daniel Smith paints. After deciding on a taupe background, I added a a little metallic taupe to the blossoms and a more muted background to complement the image. I stamped the sentiment using a Memento teal ink and added a gold shadow using a pen. I finished the card with a doily, gold thread and matching sequins.

To change up the mood, I decided to take one of the brighter backgrounds and paired it with a great snarky stamp set, the Today I Am Happy Kit. I had earlier made some other acrylic backgrounds using yellows and reds (creating orange based prints). I wasn’t as pleased with this set, but, as the colors are a great complement to the blue green prints, I decided to use one of the sheets to paper piece the girl. I used pencils on the rest of her. Since, the image of the girl has bubbles surrounding her, I decided to capitalize on this feature and added a ton more using black and white Posca pens. I embossed the sentiment directly on the paper. This time to make it a bit more dramatic, I created a black frame to surround the white edging around the image and called it done.

All in all, I think I created 3 very different looks, using the same background technique. Hope you agree! Try this sometime... it is so messy but fun! See you tomorrow for Day Two!