Watercolor with Reinkers

A very quick post today – things are busy around here as we gear up for a weekend away and struggle through rainy weather and no child care!

I made this for a friend yesterday – they just had a baby and I knew she’d appreciate this sentiment, which I absolutely adore.

Watercolor Nursery Deco
I used Mama Elephant Nursery Deco for those cute animals and messily scribbled first with water and then dropped some reinkers onto the watercolor paper. Using a wet brush, I moved around the ink – such a fun and loose way to add watercolor – one of my favorite methods. The outline of the animals disappeared a little under the bright colors so I went over the outline with a gel pen – the result isn’t quite as perfect as I like, but does add to the ‘handmade’ feel of the card. 
Ok, that is all for me today. Thanks for stopping by & have a great day!

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1 Hour Challenge

Hello! I’m back today with another 1 hour challenge – this time I am working with the Simon Says Stamp July Card Kit. You can see a previous 1 hour challenge using Studio Calico Penny Arcarde here. I love the Simon Says Stamp card kits – the stamp sets are always adorable and the mix of papers and embellishments is great – for an amazing price!

I did struggle a little bit with this kit for some reason – colors I’m not used to working with, maybe? Even though these are not my favorite cards of all time, I thought I would still share them. I think this 1 hour challenge is so much fun and great way to use up your kits as opposed to simply admiring them! So here goes – managed these 4 cards within the 1 hour.

For the first card, I focused on the sweet patterned papers – loved these ones in particular, especially with the kraft base – 
Next up, some masking with those adorable envelope stamps – 
A simple layout to let the gorgeous sentiment stamp shine – 
A bolder card featuring graphic paper. I also wanted the sentiment to be the star of the show here – it pops with white embossing powder.
That is all for me today – I would love to see what you come up with if you give yourself the same challenge – include a link in the comments and I will be sure to stop by! 

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On the Reading List

I used to be an avid reader. Ever since having Jacob (over 2 years now!), reading has taken a major backseat  – it might not be even be in the proverbial car! I have really tried to make an effort lately to read more – a few minutes here and there – and I’m so happy I have. The total transformative power of a book is truly amazing and I really relish those moments I get to disconnect. Here is my current reading list – would love to hear some of your recommendations too!

I recently purchased the Kindle Paperwhite, and it has been a game changer – reading is easier in bed, at the gym, traveling – I love it.

I just finished reading Life After Life and I loved it. The premise of the book is one that I find really fascinating – the concept that if one event changes, or one scenario, the outcome of the rest of your life could be altered forever – sort of like the movie Sliding Doors (a classic!). I found the book very readable, gripping and thoroughly enjoyable. Some parts are a bit fantastical, but overall highly recommended. If you haven’t read any other Kate Atkinson I can also wholeheartedly suggest Case Histories. 

I also recently read The Goldfinch . Wow, wow and wow. I was totally engrossed in this book – I could hardly put it down. It is long, and admittedly tedious at times, but so wonderful. The writing is so descriptive and vivid, you can easily lose yourself and imagine totally that you’ve ended up in the world of the book’s characters. A must read in my opinion!

The Happiness Project is a fun read and has a lot of good lessons on finding more happiness in your everyday life. I read this awhile ago, made some resolutions and never stuck with them. I think I will re-read this one when the time is right. Nothing earth-shattering here, but an enjoyable book and interesting approach to being your best self.

I have heard many great things about The Artist’s Wayby Julia Cameron. I am always looking for ways to push myself creatively – apparently this book is just the ticket. I look forward to reading it and sharing what I learn!

I hope you’re inspired to do some summer reading. I would love any suggestions to add to my current reading list!

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Papertrey Ink July Blog Hop

Hello friends! I’m so happy it is Friday – what about you? We have booked a babysitter for tomorrow night for the first time in awhile and I’m ready for an evening at the movies and dinner. My little guy is teething – his very last tooth – and he is a handful!


I’m very happy I had a chance to make this quick card for the Papertrey Ink July Blog Hop. I loved the inspiration photo and was most drawn to the colors and the floral bouquet. I started off with a striped background, but found it too distracting for the bouquet, so opted for some subtle dots. I used this Hero Arts background stamp, which hasn’t been inked in years. I love it actually – so nice to use an old stamp and remember why you bought it in the first place :-)

Ok, that is all for me today – thanks for stopping by & enjoy the hop!

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Hero Arts challenge – 1 layer card

Hello again! I hope your week is off to a good start – it is a busy one around here. Trying to stay occupied with daycare closed and rainy days – not the easiest combo with a little guy who likes to constantly be out & about!

I have a quick one layer card to share today for the Hero Arts one layer card challenge. I really love one layer cards – sending mail from Switzerland is really pricey and nice flat cards come in very handy. I often use stamp layering on a one layer card to create the appearance of depth. Elements like ink splatters, large sentiments and rounded corners also help a lot to achieve a cohesive look in a single layer.

I used a new favorite color combo on this card – Lemon Yellow, Butter Bar and Dark Quartz – love how these worked together. 
Thanks so much for stopping by today – I really appreciate it! 

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Color Me Happy

I love Pinterest. I’m a relatively avid pinner, happily collecting boards of DIY, recipes, card inspiration, color combinations and more. But, after hours get sucked away into the time warp that is Pinterest, what then? Its an amazing site, but a total trap as well. I have recently made an effort to do more with my pins – cook the recipes, do the DIYs – I even have friends who host Pinterest Parties making creations they find on the site.

I have decided to start a new series using the color combinations I pin endlessly to inspire some new creations. I love color – I love fearless combos, pleasing pairings, rainbows. I am always looking for new combinations and how those matches could spark something new in my creativity. This was fun – I highly recommend it. Here is my first experiment.

Here was the color combination 
I pulled some coordinating papers, patterned papers and ink to get things going.


I decided to start off with some navy cards -
This card uses the Simon Says Stamp Lots of Dots set – a really set this one! And the gorgeous Alte New Magnolias for Her set – love those gorgeous blooms. The sentiment is from the Simon Says Stamp Handwritten Greetings. The card is cut to 4″ wide to allow for the banner & flower hanging off the edge.
A super simple one using some leftover Studio Calico goodies and some fun patterned paper. 
Next, I got inky with a Simon Says Stamp diagonal stripe stencil and one of my all time favorite floral stamp sets. 
Lastly, one of my favorite layouts – the perfect way to show off gorgeous patterned paper and a big sentiment. 


That is all for this instalment of Color Me Happy – I hope you’re inspired to do something with all your pins! Thanks for stopping by!

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Project Life Weeks 10 & 11

Hello friends! Whew, the week got away from me – what about you? Our daycare is closed for 2 weeks and things are pretty busy around here! Yesterday we took an impromptu day trip to Lake Caumasee (about 1.5 hours from Zurich) – it was such a nice way to spend a day and felt like a real holiday – even if for only 6 hours! It was stunning.

I’m still playing MAJOR catch up on Project Life – I have yet to figure out a system to organize, edit & print my photos in a more timely manner. It literally takes me hours to sort through all the photos from my Iphone & DSLR, sort them into weeks, choose all the placements for the pockets, edit, print, cut – I can’t quite work out how to streamline it – any suggestions really appreciated. Anywho, I digress. Here are weeks 10 & 11.

These weeks featured a day trip to the Alscace region in France & some quiet time around Zurich as I recovered from a surgery. Can’t wait to get more pages done – I love having it completed – so satisfying. 
Thanks for stopping by & have a great weekend!
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Wish List Wednesday

There are so many things on my crafty wish list right now – how about you? Here is what I’m wishing would magically appear on my doorstep (can someone please let my husband know this very handy gift list was posted?).

I love this stamp and die from Studio Calico. Truth be told, I have already preordered this, so no need to send this to me if you were considering it ;-)

Next up, the Notes & Things collection from Crate Paper. All of it. Every single item. Here are some of my favorites – swoon.

Next up, the fun new release at Simon Says Stamp. I love the Enjoy the Journey set for Project Life & scrapbooking.
And the stencil set? Yes, please.
And the Keep Swimming set is adorable. I think I will love this for kid’s cards and card making kits geared at a younger audience.

I loved the new release from Alte New. The Sketchy Flowers Rose – total stunner.

How about those Clearly Besotted Stamps that I have had my eye on for awhile? First up, Fresh Flowers. This set is just stunning – I think it is time to take the plunge and order it.

From their latest release – I love the Simply Quilled set – this is really something different to add to the stamping arsenal.

Lastly, I have a confession. I have a serious addiction to ink. I own just about every ink pad from every major manufacturer. And I can’t stop. There is something about a new ink pad – the color, the juiciness, the endless possibilities offered by such a simple little rectangle! I love all the Hero Arts inks – I probably reach for them first, followed closely by Papertrey Ink & Simon Says Stamp. 
But, I have been wanting to try the WPlus9 collection for a long time – I think the colors are so appealing. I think I will put the original collection & the new colors on my birthday wish list next month. 

Ok, that just about does it – and would definitely do it for my wallet for a long time!

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Penny Arcade Card Kit, Take 2

Popping in quickly today to share some more cards I made with the Studio Calico Penny Arcade Card Kit & Pinball add-on. I did these outside of the designated 1 hour challenge (see here). These cards came together very quickly thanks to gorgeous patterned papers.

On both of these I did challenge myself to use only kit contents and I love the result. Typically I would never think to use letter stickers on a card, but I love how they look on the 2nd card, so well worth giving yourself that challenge and seeing where the supplies take you.
Thanks so much for stopping by. Back again soon sharing a one layer card for the current Hero Arts Challenge.
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1 hour with Studio Calico Penny Arcade

So, its been awhile….

We are back from our month-long trip to the states and getting settled again in Zurich. It is always a tough transition after such a long time away. Jacob has to re-adjust to a daycare where he doesn’t speak the language, the time change is brutal for everyone and normal life takes a bit of getting used to all over again. This time has been especially hard – my husband had been off work for a few months and Jacob was LOVING having him around. He started working again & mommy is paying the price with a very angry toddler who misses daddy. But, one day at a time. It is good to be back and I always welcome routine.

I haven’t had tons of time to get in the craft room, but when I get my new kits each month, I can’t wait to put them to use. I always give myself a challenge to see how many cards I can create in 1 hour using only the kit contents (not including ink and other crafting tool essentials).

For this month’s Studio Calico release, I ordered both main card kit & the add-on – I wasn’t over the moon about the stamp set in the Penny Arcade main kit, but loved the Pinball add-on set. Despite not even touching the June kit yet, I went straight to work on July – here is what I managed in 1 hour (and that time included 1 mess up card which I ditched after about 15 minutes!).

This first card came together in a flash, thanks to a gorgeous big sentiment stamp & lovely patterned papers. This is also one of my go-to sketches, so a real no-brainer :-)
This is the 2nd version of this card – the first being the aforementioned card, now in the trash can! I stamped the outline flower images from Pinball in Hero Arts Soft Sand and used Prismacolor colored pencils and Gamasol to do some very quick, sketchy coloring. A simple sentiment and rounded corners kept this to a simple, 1 layer creation.
This is the last card I managed to squeeze in during the 1 hour session – super simple one. I love the sentiment and the pop of subtle color from the flower. 
Ok, I have a few more cards to share from this kit so I’ll be back tomorrow with those. Have a great weekend – hope you are having better weather than us here in Zurich!
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