Friday, June 29, 2012

Caution, Construction Zone

This week,at Card Crafter's Circle, we want to see your


We're talking construction in the creation of your card. We would love to see what you come up with that is more than a single-fold or gate-fold card....  easel cards, step cards, spinners, sliders, shaped cards, waterfalls.... my goodness there are so many construction projects to create! Once you've constructed your lovely, go to and enter this week's challenge. Our gracious sponsor will give our randomly drawn challenge winner their choice of 3 Milk Coffee images! But wait.... there's more! Our sponsor will also provide one image each to our chosen Top 3! So even more possible chances to be a winner!
I am construction challenge -- ok, I admit that there are plenty of days that I think I'm creatively challenged, but I definitely know that constructing things is NOT my cup of tea. Don't put hammer and nails, sewing machine and thread, Tinker Toys or Legos in my hands -- your efforts would be totally useless. So, while my teamies were busy putting together lovely frame cards, spinners, purses, and the likes, I frantically searched for something that was labeled "construction card for dummies." I don't remember what this kind of card is called,** but it is essentially two "regular" cards combined to create a new format. The bottom "card" is the larger of the two, and is folded up about 1/3 of the way. The second "card" is smaller and is folded in half. The smaller card is then adhered to the bottom card in such a way that the front fits over the folded up part of the bottom card. The green circle with the large yellow flower brad holds everything closed. It really is rather cute all made up (and simple enough for the construction impaired such as I).

So, get out your Tinker Toys -- er, I mean your scissors and paper and let's see what you construct! In the mean time, do visit Card Crafter's Circle blog and see what my (less construction challenged) teamies have put together to inspire you.

**I went back and checked, and my card is called a "Joy Fold" card. You can find a tutorial for this at Splitcoast Stampers at

Monday, June 25, 2012

Happy Birthday Grandson

Saturday was my youngest grandson's birthday. He turned 14, and I'm ashamed to admit that I totally procrastinated putting a card together for him. I was scurrying at the last minute and made this one, but it totally isn't what I originally had in mind. Collin isn't a musician nor really that "into" music. He is into gaming (X-Box/DS3), tennis or cross country racing/running, but not music. I saw several digital images that would have worked for his interests, and I had even bought, some time back, the Magnolia Edwin tennis player with Collin in mind. Did I buy or use any of those -- well, as you can see, the answer is NO.

Despite it being a special young man's special day, I just could not seem to get my "act together" nor my Muses working! Consequently (shhh, don't let this get out), I ended up using an image that I already had coloured up -- the above little rocker guy ("Rockin Kody" by Some Odd Girl). OK, I figured I could just tie it in, even though it wasn't REALLY Collin by using the sentiment "You Rock." Did I? Umm, well, you can see I didn't. I'm really hanging my head at this point :-(

So, all things being what they were (and my having dropped a couple notches on the "Super Grandmother" scale), the card was made and given (along with an appropriately nice gift), and being the polite, gracious little kid (er, I mean young man) that Collin is, he made adequately appreciative remarks. Thanks, Sweetie, next year I promise to do better!

Friday, June 22, 2012

June Bride

Traditionally, June has always been known as the wedding month (although I recently read that December has become the most popular month for weddings). My parents had a June wedding, and I had a December one, so guess we had both months covered (smile).

This week, our challenge over at Card Crafter's Circle ( is -- hum, have you guessed yet? Yuppers, make a Wedding Card! Our sponsor for this week's challenge is a returning sponsor, Whoopsie Daisy! Linnie creates delightful sheets of hand-drawn images, with each sheet containing 4 images! And there are so many to choose from! The randomly drawn winner at the end of the week will receive two sheets (8 images) from the many designs Whoopsie Daisy has to offer. All you have to do is create a wedding card, enter it in the CCC challenge and link your blog/card using the "You are Next" link at the bottom of the challenge information. If nothing else, stop by CCC and see the lovely inspiration provided by our design team members!

Speaking of inspiration, here is my DT card for this week's challenge (bet you were beginning to wonder, eh?)

I printed the digital image onto white card and coloured the hair, bouquet and shadowing on her white dress using Copic markers. I then fussy cut the image and attached a piece of netting which I gathered up on one end to form a veil. I also lightly added Stickles Star Dust on the bodice of the dress for slight bling and sparkle.

I then cut a 5.5 x 5.5" white card base. On top of the based, I adhered a piece of decorative card from a DCWV pad called "The Luxury Stack." The pad was 8 x 8", so I did trim it to fit my card base. With one of the pieces that I cut from the DP, I created a strip using a Martha Stewart border punch. (At the time I bought most of my punches, I did not think about keeping the name of the punch designs. My crystal ball was not working at the time (grin), and I did not realize I'd be sharing information as to how I made my cards.) Anyhoo, across the strip that I punched, I added a piece of white lace. (This is that wonderful self-sticking lace that cuts down on bulk as well as making it a delight to adhere -- no more messy glue, tape or trying to keep the lace in place. This particular one is from the "French General" collection by Jolee's Boutique.)

After adhering the lace strip, I added by bride with pop-up dots. I then added white roses and white and pink rose buds by Wild Orchid Crafts, and two large white pearls by Recollections. I don't have a sentiment on my card (you can see the "white space on the right side of the card where the sentiment will go) because I don't have a wedding stamp, and when I was ready to print off a sentiment, my computer printer informed me I was out of ink (hate when that happens and I don't have a refill readily at hand; that has now been recified, but not before I had to turn in my card for the challenge posting). So, that's my DT card for this week's challenge (warts and all - grin).

Enjoy - will see you later in the craft room!

Thursday, June 21, 2012

New Venture

My older daughter, Paige, decided that it is time for me to venture into the realm of Smash books. She has done several and had such a good time with them that she wanted me to try, so she bought me my first book and a few odds and ends to go into it. Paige told me the key to Smash books is not to over-think it. It is supposed to be free-form and not even necessarily theme oriented. HA! I thought she knew her Mom better than that. Was surprised that she actually thinks I can just free-form, go with the flow, let it all hang out and have a good time with it! It is an adorable idea, but I am finding the idea very intimidating! I looked through her books, and they are fantastic and adorable. I open my (blank) book and immediately go into panic mode. For someone who loves notebooks as much as I do, I don’t know why the idea of a Smash book sends me into such fear! Whatever was she thinking?
So, I bit the bullet and took the plunge. I have started my smashing and am embracing the idea that the book does not need to be theme oriented. It is not a scrapbook; it doesn't have to tell the stories; it doesn't even have to make sense. I decided my book would simply be random thoughts, feelings and ideas. It would, in the true philosophy of smash books, hop around to whatever is on my mind or whatever I'm feeling at the time. Afterall, I do have my scrapbooks for the structured stories in my life. I am also trying to embrace letting go of my need for perfection, linear lines, percision writing -- the whole OCD perfectionism that I deal with on a regular basis.
The page I am going to share is about a feeling. The Hubs and I are animal people. We love the little fur babies and have had both dogs and cats (also hamsters, guinia pigs, bunnies) throughout our married life. I tend to be more of the cat person where the Hubs tends to be more canine oriented; however, the cross-over for both of us is very apparent. The loss of each of our beloved fur babies has hurt and broken our hearts; however, the loss of one particular little feline this past November still has us reeling and both of us get tears in our eyes when we think of her. She was only 2 years old (and we'd had her for those two years -- far less time than most of our previous babies), but in that short time, she really got into both our hearts. She was killed, and we were totally not expecting nor prepared for it.
My smash page shows two pictures of her as a baby (for some reason baby pictures were less painful for me than her adult pictures). The heading/saying reads: "We never know where the heart will take us NOR how painful the journey may be."
Here is my Bella smash pages. This is not her story. This is mine. Her story is in her scrapbook. My story is in my heart.

And this was Bella, all grown up.

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Paper Roses

I was asked by several people to explain how I made the paper rose that I used on one of the DT cards that I did for Dutch Paper Crafts (see blog entry LifeStyle Crafts Embossing Folders). The idea was not my own, having learned it well over a year ago via someone else's blog. I was going to simply direct readers to the original blog site for the instructions, but when I clicked on my bookmarks, I received a message that the blog no longer existed. There are probably other blogs with the instructions, but it was just a lot quicker for me to make a few of the roses and photo the instructions as I went along. So, here is my attempt to share the instructions for these easy, but lovely looking, little paper roses. (This will be a long blog entry as I will be sharing a lot of photos.)

 You will need one 5-petal flower punch. I'm showing various ones that I own. You will notice that several have just rounded petals and several have a "scalloped" looking petal. Either style will work. The larger the punch, the larger the flower. I've used all of the above at various times to make my roses. You can even cut the pieces from your Cricut as many of the cartridges have a 5-petal flower.
 You only need to punch three flowers. These can be punched from paper or cardstock. It is your choice. I tend to use cardstock in solid colours to match the card/project I am making. I also ink the edges a lot to give more colour and texture, but this is not necessay. As you see, I am using the scalloped punch this time for my sample.
 After you have punched the three flowers, you will need to cut them as follows: Cut a slit in your first piece between two of the petals. Cut the slit only to the middle of the flower but not through the middle (does not show well in the photos, but the first flower on the left). Cut one petal out of the second piece (do not discard any of your cut pieces as you will be using them). Cut two petals out of your third piece. You should have something similar to the piecs shown in the photo above.
 This is where you will ink the edges of your pieces if that is your choice. Now, using a quick drying glue (I use Scott's quick dry), create your layers in this manner: glue the two petals beside the slit to each other. You will be adhering the bottom of the right petal to the top of the left petal so that you've form a 4 petal cone shape. For the second piece, adhere the two petals beside the cut out space in the same manner so that you have a 3 petal cone shape. The third piece is also done the same way so that you have a 2 piece cone. The fourth piece (the two petals cut out of your third piece) are then rolled so that one side rolls toward the front and the other side rolls toward the back. Your last piece (the single petal cut from your second piece) is rolled into a small cone. At this point, if you want, you can curl your first three pieces so the petals roll toward the back. This is done by lightly spritzing the underside with water and gently rolling over a pencil, stylis, skewer or whatever you might use for rolling your pieces.
 It is now time to assemble your rose. Put a dab of glue in the bottom middle of your first piece (the 4 petal piece). Place your 3-petal piece on top so that the petals of the two pieces are off-set from each other. I usually place my rose on my cushion pad while assembling and  take my stylis to gently push down in the middle to make sure the two pieces adhere to each other Do the same for the third piece (2-petal cone). (You may need to cut a small amount off the bottom of each cone so that they fit nicely inside of each other. Just snip off the point of the cone.)

Taking your last two pieces, place a dab of glue in the middle of your rose and then place the piece that is rolled to the front and the back inside the top cone. With your tweezers, gently maneuver the piece so that folds create the middle of the rose. Lastly, add a dab of glue to the middle of the last piece and place the tightly wound piece in the center. I have found that I have to trim a bit off the bottom of the last two pieces or they will stick up above the top of my flower. You may have to play with the last piece until it is to your liking.
These roses really do not take a lot of time and become even quicker as you get more used to the procedure. Here are four different roses that I made for this tutorial. The two pink ones were made using the scalloped punch and the two yellow ones were made using the rounded petals. I inked one of  the pink roses (on the right) and turned down the petals. The other pink rose was not inked nor were the petals turned. I tend to like my petals better not turned. They seem to lie better on my card and with the punched leaves that I make. The non-rolled ones just remind me a bit more of the commercial roses that I buy. It is definitely up to you and what you like best.

I hope my instructions have been clear and that you will give this a try. These roses are wonderful additions when I don't have the right colour in my commercial stash for the project I' working with. I've used the small punch and the jumbo one (the technique is the same), and all results are quite pretty. Be aware that probably no two of your roses will look the same. This is OK as no two roses, even from the same bush, are going to be the same. Just have fun.

Friday, June 8, 2012

Monochromatic, Please

This week at Card Crafter's Circle (, we challenge you to create using a MONOCHROMATIC colour scheme! We want to see what you can do with one colour (allowing for black line images, white cardstock etc) ....
Our sponsor this week, is Stamp-N-Doodle!

Stamp-N-Doodle have unique diversity, offering rubber stamps, digital stamps, and printable scrapbooking supplies. They also offer crafting instructions!

Our winner this week will receive a prize of two images of their choice from the Stamp-N-Doodle inventory.

The DT team decided to use the rainbow as inspiration for our monochromatic scheme, with each one of us using one of the ROYGBIV colours. We were asked by our sponsor to each use the same image which is called Prom Queen. The team also decided to keep our individual cards hidden from each other until the Friday challenge went live, so the reveal was a big surprise for all of us. As always, the team stepped up to the challenge with our usual verve and created some absolutely beautiful cards. You'll want to go over and have a look see at the lovely rainbow of talent.

My card uses the red colour scheme (obviously). I used a smidgeon of the neutral tan colour but otherwise kept to the red as much as possible. All papers, to include the patterned papers, are from my stash. After colouring the image, I used one of my Spellbinder dies and cut the image out. I used the next size large of the same die set for the mat behind the image. I used red ink by ColorBox to ink around the image.

The ribbon is from Michael's Crafts. It is a beautiful organdy with side bands of satin. I placed it across the card to separate the two patterned papers. After adding the bow, I also added three red flowers from WOC (a mum type and two roses). Lastly, I added the swirls of pearls to finish off this very elegant card.

Monday, June 4, 2012

Baby Shoes

This is the last posting for my DT assignment using the Lifestyle Craft embossing folders, and it is probably the one most of you have been waiting for (grin). Without further ado, here are the baby shoes:

Darlene was so sweet on her release vidio giving me extensive kudos for these little shoes, and I wish I deserved those high praises, but the idea actually came from my girlfriend, Bonnie, who found the pattern for these little lovelies at You will find a nice PDF pattern for this design and another design (more boyish style) which you can print off and cut out.

After printing off my pattern, I traced and hand cut the pieces. REMEMBER to flip your pattern over so that you have a right and a left pattern piece. This is especially important if you are using a paper that has a colour on one side and white on the other. Since I used white, it was just a matter of remembering to flip the pattern when I embossed as both sides of my paper were the same. If you don't flip the pattern (either in cutting or when embossing) you will end up with two right feet or two left feet (smile).

I used the embossing set by Lifestyle Crafts called "Jubilant." One of the plates was of the small flowers (top of shoe) and the other was the zig-zag pattern which reminded me of treads one often finds on the soles (especially of trainers/tennis shoes).

I suggest that you use a tape runner adhesive for construction rather than a glue. The adhesive needs to be quick grabbing/drying for the construction to be quicker and tighter. It takes longer and is more difficult to have to glue each little tab that fits the top and sole together (this will make more sense when you see the pattern). Once you've constructed the shoe, you can cover the tabs by cutting an insole (I used the pink dotty paper). You will need to fiddle with this a little to get your insole the right size. There is not a pattern for it, and it needs to be smaller than the original sole piece to fit inside.

I decorated the top very simply by tying tiny bows from 1/8" pink ribbon and topping the bow with a tiny rose bud from Wild Orchid Crafts. Both of my daughters actually had little shoes that looked like those (with the small ribbon and ribbon rose buds) when they were new-borns. I didn't have any ribbon roses that small, so the WOC rose was substituted. (Darlene also sells a Joy Crafts die for making your own small roses. If you prefer to make your own, email Darlene and ask for Joy Crafts Die 6003/0009.) I used small pink "pearles" as the buttons on the side -- but you can decorate these in a variety of different ways -- you will see an entirely different idea at the site where you will get your pattern.

These would make darling decorations for a baby shower. They are fairly quick to make (especially after you do the first one). They would be so cute on top of a gift, a small box or inside a shadowbox. They would also be adorable as a small memento in front of plates at a sit down shower.

Lifestyle Craft Embossing Folders 3

This was a large release, so lots to share with you. I am going to try to finish up today, though. Lots to share and lots of reading, so that's why I've broken it up into three entries rather than one VERY long posting. As I have mentioned before, these are lovely embossing folders so I don't want you to miss anything.

For this card, I used one of the plates from the Floret set. I embossed the flowers onto a cream piece of card and cut it down to fit the front of my card (background to my little image). I started with a cream card base which I then topped with a piece of blue card and then a piece of DP from a little 6 x 6" pad called "Fiddlesticks" by Miss Caroline Designs. The little image, which I fussy cut, is by Saturated Canary ( Isn't she beautiful? I added a strip of purple which I first trimmed with one of my Martha Stewart border punches (I really LUV those punches and use them often). In the top right corner, I've added a scalloped circle of blue and a regular circle of yellow gingham which I then topped with a Prima flower and some die cut swirls. For the inside of this card, I used the solid purple card from which I cut the strip for the front to layer on top of the inside. I then took a piece of the embossed cream (that I had cut down for the front) and placed it along the side to tie in with the front. I printed off my verse and cut it with a Spellbinder die. I inked around the edge and adhered it to my card. Totally lovely little card with the embossing pieces adding that additional texture and WOW factor.

For this card, I used both plates from the set called "Bloom." Both plates are super fantastic! For the front, I started with a rose-pink coloured card. On top of that, I placed the periwinkle coloured card that I'd embossed and inked. (I used "Heliotrope" by ColorBox and lightly ran the pad over the raised, embossed surface. I went over the front several times until I got enough ink to make the embossing POP. If you rub too hard, the ink will get onto areas other than the raised portion, so light strokes with several passes works best.) I added lace, ribbon, a square of DP (from Fiddlesticks pad) which is matted on the rose, and a fussy-cut Tilda image from Magnolia Inks.

The inside used the second plate in the Bloom set. It is a lucious Mum looking design which radiates from the center all the way to the edges. It was so pretty that I deliberately left off the sentiment so that you could see the full design (although it will not be any less effective or lovely with a design on top). I again inked the design with the Heliotrope ink (Heliotrope is a purple colour, so it really made the design POP), and I added two little corner punched pieces using the DP that I'd used on the front.

I like to coordinate and finish off the insides of my cards to go with the fronts. I don't often show the insides (should do that more), but I do decorate the insides to all my cards. This not only gives a more finished look to the card, but it also prevents the front from being so much heavier than the back.

OK, you are going to have to go to one more entry to get the last of my designs. I know I said I was going to finish up with this entry, but I fibbed (grin).  I think the final installment in my embossing folder adventure deserves its own entry.

Remember, Darlene sells all these beautiful embossing folders (plus 4 others by Lifestyle Crafts) at her blog site. You need to go there and have a look. Her prices are fab. You just need to find what you want to order and then email her with your list. You won't find an order form or check-out procedures as you might at other store sites, but believe me, the prices and service are well worth this different method. You will find a direct link to Dutch Paper Crafts on the left side of my blog. Click on it, and it will take you directly to the site.

Lifestyle Crafts - Part 2

As mentioned yesterday, I am going to show the Lifestyle Crafts embossing folder cards for the next few entries. There are 8 cards/projects in this series from me, and I just don't think that you will be able to really see the beauty of the embossing folders if I show them to you all at one time -- total sensory overload (grin). All of the embossing folders are available at Dutch Paper Crafts (link in my sidebar), and believe me, they are well worth the purchase. They are all quite lovely and add so much to any card. So now onward --

I used two different embossing plates from two different sets to create this beautiful little card. The first plate on the front of the card is from the Springtime set. The images are a lovely flower which embosses with clear, deep details. I used a yellow cardstock and then lightly sanded the flowers. The light sanding brought out more of the beautiful details of this embossing plate. I started with a white card base and place a piece of brown card on top. I embossed the yellow and cut it down, leaving about 1/8" brown showing all around. I added brown ribbon to the lower part of the card, leaving the top for my saying. The saying is a stamp by Inkadinkado which I inked with brown ink. I then layered it onto the yellow and then onto the brown. The flower is a plastic flower called Flora Doodles by Petaloo. It matched perfectly, and I tucked it under the bow using dimensional pop-up dots. (The flower, however, came off during shipping my cards to Darlene at Dutch Paper Crafts. She did recognize which card it went to, but she attached it at the corner of the saying rather than under the ribbon. To be perfectly honest, it looked just as nice in either place.)

For the inside of the card, I used the 2nd embossing plate in the birthday set. I really liked the swirly lines, and when lightly sanded, they were even prettier. I've left off adding a sentiment to the inside of the card so that you can better see just how neat this embossing plate looks. It has a lot of versatility, in my opinion, and I can see it being used with more elegant or formal cards and images. I used the plate sideways, but vertical, it would make an elegant border -- embossing only one or two images rather than your whole piece.

For this card, I again used one of the plates from two different sets. The outside images are from the Springtime set, and the inside is from the Floret set. Remember, each set has two different embossing plates -- a great bargain for your money! Anyways, I thought the two plates complimented each other since they both had butterflies. The Springtime plate is all butterflies while the Floret plate has flowers and a large butterflie in the corner.

I started with a white base card and then cut a piece of Core'dinations card called "whitewash" which I embossed. The whitewash is kind of the reverse from most of Core'dination's papers in that it is white on the outside and colored inside. After I embossed my images, I heavily sanded so that the blue inside core would show. This gave the piece a lovely subtle color. I matted the the embossed piece onto a piece of matching solid blue Core' dinations card. I added a piece of white ribbon and a piece of white lace across the middle of my embossed piece. I then cut a white doily using Spellbinder's heart circles die. The swirl is made using the Vine, Swirly Sizzlit die by Ellison. I cut three of them, then snipped here and there and built the swirly to fit my card. I added three blue pearls to the ends of the swirls.

The butterfly is made from Cherry Lynn dies (sold by Dutch Paper Crafts). I absolutely adore this butterfly and use it often. It is just gorgeous layered such as I've done on my card. The flowers are from Wild Orchid Crafts, and I've added additional leaves which I cut using a Sizzix regular die. The sentiment was printed from my computer onto white card and matted with the blue card.

The inside of the card using the plate from the Floret set. Again, I used the whitewash Core'dinations card and treated it the same as the front, sanding it heavily to bring out the blue. I mounted the embossed piece straight onto the white card, then using another Spellbinder die, I cut out my sentiment (computer generated) and matted it with blue cut from the same Spellbinder set in a larger size. This worked up into quite a stunning card.

I know this entry is getting a bit long, so I'll end it here. I have three more cards/projects to share with you in this release. I will probably do two more tomorrow and then the last one by itself.

Sunday, June 3, 2012

Lifestyle Craft Embossing Folders

One of my recent DT assignments for Darlene at Dutch Paper Crafts were beautiful embossing folders by Lifestyle Crafts (QuicKutz). These were wonderful folders, and I enjoyed working with them very much. Darlene released the video and the set today on her blog, so now I'm scampering to get details to you here on my blog. A girlfriend told me I need to set up my entries ahead of time and then publish them at the appropriate time (at the time of releases). That would be a wonderful idea if only I knew how to do that -- anyone willing to tutor me?

So, on to the embossing folders!

This first folder is from the birthday set. I embossed a piece of yellow cardstock with the happy birthday words (I believe Darlene called that subway art). Although it was not necessary because these Lifestyle Craft folders emboss beautifully, I lightly sanded the words so they would show up a little more and to give more texture to my piece. I cut the piece down to fit my card, matting the yellow with white card. The white base card is layered with a navy blue card. I added the blue dotty strip (also matted with white), a ribbon and bow and then my adorable little image (which is a digi from Bugaboo Stamps).

This plate (which is not showing up well in my photo, but shows well in real life as well as on Darlene's video) is another word plate. This one is called Sweetheart. I embossed it on white card but did not sand or ink the words. I thought the white only gave a more elegant look and was in keeping with the peach and white color scheme I was using. The card base is peach. I layered a panel of white which I first cut along the button edge using a Martha Stewart border punch. I then added another peach layer under my white embossed words. The ribbon is added to only the top two layers. I then topped it off with a rose which I made myself using Punch Bunch punches. The leaves are cut with an old Sizzix die. I creased the middle of each leaf and lightly bent it to give more dimension.

This card was made using the second plate in the Sweetheart set. I embossed a piece of peach cardstock with the small hearts and then cut one part off (which I saved and used on the inside - not shown). I started with a white card base and layered a piece of designer paper on the front. I added a white border down the side of the embossed piece (cut with a Martha Stewart border punch). I backed my little image using green DP (from the same little 6 x 6" pad by My Mind's Eye) which I cut using "Decorative Doily" by Die-namics die. My little image is by Magnolia, and I fussy cut little Tilda. I added a Memory Box flourish (98253) and tiny little pearls to simulate rain drops. As I said, I coordinated the inside by using the rest of the embossed piece and another piece of the background DP.

I'm going to stop here for this entry. I'll add more cards tomorrow using more of these beautiful embossing folders. I think it is best to share a few over a longer period of time than to try to get them all in at one time. I don't want you to miss out on seeing just how lovely these folders are. So, until tomorrow, happy crafting!

Friday, June 1, 2012

Stars and Stripes

This week our theme for the Card Crafter's Circle challenge blog is stars and stripes. Although not required to go patriotic, I chose to use the adorable Meljen image provided to construct this red, white and blue step card. (Hope over to the CCC blog, and see the different ways my teamies used the stars and stripes theme.) With 4th of July (Independence Day) coming up, this theme and the image were perfect for displaying a little of the USA pride (grin).

Once again, we welcome back a wonderful sponsor, Meljen Designs. Meljen's Designs is a lovely stamp company owned and illustrated by Melissa Jenkins. She illustrates whimsical rubber and digital images inspired by her kids and family. Meljen's Designs has new releases, along with a new challenge every Thursday, a Guest Designer each month at the Meljen's Designs Blog, and freebies and promos now and then on their facebook Fan Page! Please visit the Meljen's Designs line of stamps at our store HERE to browse through all Melissa's lovely designs! You can also see Melissa's rubber stamps at her corner of Whimsy Stamps!

Our randomly drawn challenge winner will receive 4 digital images (uncoloured) of their choice... what a great prize!

I had never made a step card before, and thanks to one of my teamies, Anne-Marie, I learned a very easy and quick method for creating this cute and different little card. It is so easy! Simply fold your card base in half (as normal), but then fold the front and back in half again. Your card should then look like this ^^.

I wasn't quite sure if I had any patriotic paper in my stash, but I was pleased to find a DCWV pad that had a fantastic patriotic theme. The page consisted of different strips of design -- perfect for the little step card. I cut three of the strips to fit the panels of my card, and adhered them to the front, the valley behind the front and the back mountain. (I need to take a picture of my card from the side so you can see the total design better. I'll try to do that and add it to this post.)
I then used my Cricut cutting machine and the George Basic Shapes cartridge and cut two stars. The blue star is 5.25" and the red is 5". I did not do a lot of colouring of this adorable little image. I did take my BG000 and coloured a shadow all around the dove so that he would stand out more. I also used that same colour on the swirls in the design. I used B91 and R14 to colour the stars. I tried several blues and reds but most of them were too vibrant and too distracting. (My 8 years old Granddaughter was here when I was working on this card. When I finished colouring one image, she told me, "I'm just not feeling it, Ma'am." She did approve of this final version, though.)

I cut the image in a circle using one of my Spellbinder circle dies and adhered it to the middle of my stars. I then adhered the stars to the middle of the back mountain. I cut a red heart with blue button and adhered it to the front right, and then I added three buttons to the back left using adhesive dots so that I could stack them and stand them up.

The fab Meljen designed coupled with that great DCWV paper made this little creation so quick and easy to achieve. We'd love to see what you create. Remember, just use some stars and some stripes and then enter your lovely in our weekly challenge.