The Little Prince birth theme – part 1

Daqadoodles140726za205242  Long had I been thinking about the theme for the birth announcement card. I like to design a card with a theme, something that to me, suits the child. For our first child, it was easy, I knew quite fast I wanted a bit of a spring theme, not neccesarily lambs, but sheep. He is Aries, and lambs are born in spring so that was very suitable. The birth announcement board was a felted sheep, so that matched too. For our second child, it took a little longer and I took her name as starting point. Also incorporated was something of her brother and of a parc in the area we used to visit often. The animals on her card were cats, and the birth announcement board was also a cat, (our cat). Now, our third child, I couldn’t think of anything. So I browsed the internet for something that matched his name. I found a card I kind of liked, and started tweaking it a bit (ofcourse I couldn’t just use the card as is, I had to put my “stamp” on it.). This is the original: geboortekaartI wanted less blue, and more summer colours, so i put in a yellow background, darkened the blue to more of a royal blue, then switched the colours around. But I wasn’t convinced by it, it was too.. obvious, in a way. (As the name Lodewijk is mostly associated with the European kings named Lodewijk or Louis, and those are associated often with baroque. http://nl.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lodewijk_%28voornaam%29 (site is only in Dutch). I don’t remember wether I started on the birth announcement card before or after June 6th, it seems it was after. As I wasn’t satisfied with this card I started anew to find a theme, another drawing style like the one that Freya’s card was based on. So I tried searching for comic styles (but how do you search for a style if you don’t know names from artists, comics, or styles?). Eventually I found paintings from various artists of The little Prince (Le Petit Prince) and I was immediately in love with it – it had a nice drawing style (not the balloonhead or manga style you see so much today), it had something royal in it, but also thoughtful quotes and a deeper meaning. My neece crossed my mind often while designing the card and re-reading the story. Some of the inspirational images are found here: http://cizgilimasallar.blogspot.nl/search/label/The%20Little%20Prince – this is a list of the posts which have artists work of The Little Prince, click on Read More below each post to see more artwork. One I liked very much is this one:

Kim Minji – http://www.ki204.com

Oh and this one:   I liked the yellow flowers, although there is some melancholy in the images. Ofcourse, that is also throughout the book, and the look of the little prince is a look of wonder. I thought about making the entire card myself, printing it and finishing it with stamps, even colouring those stamps. The prints didn’t look very well, so I eventually had them printed. But I did order handmade stamps, from http://memitherainbow.blogspot.nl/search?q=prince. On the 14th of June the kids and me painted a little. Tobias first painted something on his sheet, and then he started painting a vulcano. Next, he said the vulcano erupted and the entire sheet had to be covered with yellow/orange paint. DSC_1756 I loved it, and when it was drying I thought this was a perfect background for the card! See the vulcano on the bottom right? DSC_1760 Freya’s painting (and the circles from where the lid or the paint jar had fallen or stood). As it is childrens paint, it dried up a little pale, so I edited the photo’s digitally.

- I’ve written the above part a few days ago, but it’s kind of busy, not much time to write so I continue in photo’s now and no text. -

The card was made mostly digitally, then I uploaded it to have it printed by a cardprinting company, and then I added some stamping with (bought) handmade stamps from Memi’s rainbow. (I stamped the little prince and 3 stars on it, the star stamp was inked up once when stamping 3 stars.)

 

Strength and peace

 

Strength

I loved this card. It was made with love, joy, compassion, sadness, tears, due to the occasion  of the card and for whom it was. The text is very fitting too.

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I started with the 12 x 12 stencil cell theory and scattered straw distress ink, and only later added the buddha. I like how I coloured the buddha, it was a pretty pretty card. I outlined some of the cells, while others  fade into the background.

All was well and beautiful untill the final touch: the text. I had roughly cut out the text on the ex mount foam and hadn’t tried it out first – you can see why you should. There were ugly edges on my pretty card! Even a big smear in the face of the buddha.

 

My solution? Cover it. I stamped the indian decorative figure, embossed it with queens gold embossing powder, coloured it, cut it out and placed it over the buddhaás head, cutting it off at the shoulders. Next, I stamped the buddha’s head and embossed it with fine black emobssing powder. Then I coloured it, cut it out and glued in place. Most of the error covered, and the visible parts… proof that it was handmade ;).

The text ofcourse was cut off – several letters had disappeared behind the decorative figure, so I wrote them by hand with a fineliner, only then it was very visible that those lines where thicker then the stamped letters. So I went over those too.

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Then I made the frame. Oh how I liked it – so much that I put it in front of the mainpaper instead of behind. (I always cut out the middle to save weight and to make more use of my paper).

The frame was made with distress inks rusty hinge (my favourite, together with peacock feathers), walnut stain and brushed corduroy. Then sprayed with my wonderful spray thingy (it was a spray thing from ikea way back, they don’t sell it anymore but it sprays fantastic drops – not too fine drops but a good size drops as you can see!). Dabbed the water off, and then sprayed with – what’s it called – rangers glimmer mist copper spray? It looked real rusty, copper like. I love the contrast of the blue and the rust, love the serenity the card still emits eventhough vibrant colours are used. I like the glow behind the buddha, with the ornament on top as some holy sign.

In comparison to the other card (previous post, but I made that card later) I still prefer this one due to the blue in it, it is more peaceful, less “active”. But if I hadn’t made the other card, I would have not been able to compare the two and see the effects of the colours. A buddha in red is still possible, but with a less virbant background. Soft blue or soft yellow, not the hard yellow.

And then there are so many more colours to try….

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Vibrant tranquility – Chocolate baroque july/august challenge

Elemental Buddha and Desert Flowers

Chocolate Baroque, one of my favourite stamp designers/manufacturers has launched a challenge blog :) Great news!.

The first challenge is a colour challenge:

What a coïncidence! I had a half finished card which I messed up which had blue, yellow and red on it.. maybe I could use that? More on that card later in this post, as it went from messed up to pretty to messed up again…

New try. I  thought of the lovely peacocks stamps! So I tried a layout, stamping onto scrap paper.

And didn’t like it – it was somehow too obvious. Peacock Feathers is one of my favourite colours distress ink, so I use it often. Also the peacock stamps didn’t have the magic click this time. (You know what I mean, right? When you look at your stamps, with a vague idea in your head (or none at all, doesn’t really matter) and the stamps “speak” to you, and you “see” what you want to make / which materials you want to use.. The inspiration upon seeing a stamp was lacking in combination with this challenge and the peacock stamp.

Browsing on to other stamps. I found one, one I had used recently in a very pretty card (I haven’t posted that one yet, so this is a reference to a future post).  The buddha from the tranquility set!

Here is my entry for the Chocolate Baroque challenge #1, july/august (The challenge will close at 12.00 p.m. on 19th August GMT, and the winner will be announced on Wednesday 27th August 2014.)

Virbant Buddha

Elemental Buddha – earth in plants, stone, water, air (although it’s yellow air), metal (gold) and fire. Eeehm… the heat that makes the air yellow? The fire in the medidation that makes the buddha glow?) Ok, not exactly Feng Shui then, but as I don’t know anything about it I think it’s Feng Shui enough ;).

Materials used:

  • Buddha stamp from Chocolate Baroque Tranquility Unmounted Rubber stamp sheet – A5 UA5SP0458
  • Stamp from Chocolate Baroque Indian Textiles Unmounted Rubber stamp sheet – A5 UA5SP0413
  • 12′x 12′ stencil cell theory from crafter’s workshop
  • stencil Botanical leaves from Craft Emotions modelling paste.
  • Distress inks I most likely have used (I can’t remember exactly : Shabby shutters, peeled paint, pumice stone, shattered straw, old paper, squeezed lemonade, mustard seed, tumbled glass, walnut stain and maybe also broken china.
  • Caran D’ache neocolors for colouring the stamped images
  • Distress marker black soot for some accents on the “stones”, black fineliner and white gellpen for accents,
  • Rangers Queens Gold embossing powder
  • paper pen opaque

Some explanation on how it’s made:

I started with stamping the main image, the buddha, then masked it off.

To make the maskI stamp with stazon onto self adhesive window foil, cut it out and then I have a reusable mask – do test the stickyness of the glue first though, sometimes it can be a bit too sticky, so make it less stickier if needed by sticking it on and off paper a few times, rubbing firmly when putting it on.

Next, I stamped the other stamp, leaving some space between the buddha and this stamp, and embossed with Queens gold.This space was intended to create more dimension and to give room to the aura of the buddha, a soft light emitting from (mainly) the head.

I coloured the buddha and other stamp. I know people usually start with the background, but I didn’t this time, as I wasn’t sure about the colours I would use, so I started the other way around. I had masks for both stamps, so I simply masked them off when I went to work on the rest of the card.

tI used the stencils with distress ink first. Then I added the molding paste – the molding paste absorbs the color from the distress ink, mixed with the white of the molding paste so it is a bit of a pastel effect. I gave the modling paste more dimension with the leaves stencil by putting my palet knife flat onto the paste and then lifting it off, creating “peaks”. For the stones (as that what the cells are on this card) I sort of scratched it with the pallet knife. I added some black sooth distress marker onto the stones as the colour was too uniform grey (eventhough I used pumice stone and old paper.)

On the leaves I added some peeled paint, added a touch of paper pen opaque in the hair and a pearl in her hands.

The card is lacking something, I know, and I know what it is: a sentiment in the upper right corner. But untill I know for which occasion I want to use the card, I don’t want to put a sentiment on it. It should be something about peace, or strength.

Oh, the frame (or how do you call the card behind the center frame) was made from white cardstock, using the same colours as the dominant colours in that area, also to emphasize them (the green leaves, grey stones, blue water and yellow air)

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Now, about the failed card that I started making prior to this challenge. It kind of failed so it was just hanging there waiting for me to rescue it. I didn’t take pictures of it then, but the inking of the embossed part went wrong (it was more like and inktcircle over the embossed flower rather then only an embossed and inked dandelion).

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The background was very fitting for this challenge so I wanted to make something out of it for this challenge – and I was pretty happy with the result. Untill I did the final touch, which kind of went wrong as well. This time it is the stmes of the flowers. No idea yet how to cover that up – maybe leave it as it is, and call it artsy, or cover it with paper strips as stems?

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For the buddha card, I think some softer yellow would have been more suitable, as it’s less “tranquil” now due to the bright and intense yellow. I’ll make a short post after this post about the other buddha card I made before this one (I absolutely love the frame I made for that card!)

A bundle of innocence – Our third child is born!

Well he wasn’t born just now or yesterday, but almost exactly 2 weeks ago. (As I’m typing this, it’s 22:31, and he was born 2 weeks ago on the 3rd of july at 22:47).

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He got a bit of a classic name – Lodewijk. It means: warrior/fighter for loot. The two other names he got mean: strength of a lion and protector of mankind. Lodewijk is the dutch version for Louis, or Aloysius, althouht those two names are/were quite common in (the south) of the Netherlands too, as there is / was lots of French influence here.

We are all doing fine, and enjoying him a lot. He’s very sweet. Then again, babies cry most when they are 6 to 8 weeks old.

Only a short post, was a busy day today! More about the birthannouncement card and how I made it later!

Here is a picture of his very proud brother, holding him for the first time the next morning, Lodewijk is about 12 hrs old here.  (Lodewijk, just as his brother and sister, was born at home) :

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His sister was frowning a bit at him, but she soon decided he was interesting and fun. He too has eyes, and ears, and a nose, and hair:

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And last, an “action” family picture, Lodewijk was about 18 hrs old here:

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Steampunky Einstein, some tags, an exotic mermaid, minecraft creepers and birthcards.

I made this card for a challenge, but I forgot that I had to include certain stamps /materials sold in that shop, so my card wasn’t suitable. Still a nice card, where I experimented again with aluminium foil. ( I seem not to really get past the experimenting fase with it, I still haven’t really got a clue how to best use it).

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Made in september 2013

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Used up some stash here as well. Gear dies, Nellie Snellen multiframe die, a Joy! craft or marianne design die, 2 sizzix embossing folderss, maybe some tissue paper (beneath the lightbulb), the lightbulb stamp is from de stempelwinkel if I’m correct, and distress ink, ranger copper spray (can’t be bothered to look up the correct name now, but I love that one!) coper acryllic paint and/or copper crackling paint (I love copper – can you tell?)

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Designs by Ryn and Chocolate Baroque, my two favourite brands of stamps, and they go well together. I wanted to try out some very vibrant colors together. A mermaid lives in the ocean, and in the ocean fish can be found in lots of different beautiful colors, so why not a mermaid? I love how this turned out. But as you can see, it’s not a card, it’s only a frame. I think it still is, I still need to finish it. Or just mat it onto cardstock, and leave it as is? Maybe add a sentiment?

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Tags made using the patio stone stamp from Designs by Ryn and the Three Leaves set- stamps, paper pen and a clear stamp sentiment

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Creepers from Minecraft

I intended to make a series of Minecraft themed Christmas cards, and made stencils to get different colours of the creeper. I could have done this better – if I had taken the time to cut out the stencils out of self adhesive plastic (the kind you put on the window) or even proper stencilling sheets it would have worked better. This was about the last project I made – since jan.6th I had not made cards or sent cards, except for maybe 1 or 2. In 2013 I was very good at sending cards – first half of 2014 I was terrible, but I was so tired. (pregnancy and perparing a move, selling an appartment and renovating both places).

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 Back from crafting break – first steps again

These were about the first cards I made again after my crafting break, birth cards for twin boys. I wasn’t entirely happy with the result, but it was a start in crafting again. I had tried to keep them in the same style as the birth announcement card I had received, but I had no stamps in that style, so I just picked some elements from the card – blue and cloudy. Also, as it were boys I wanted to use my robot emobssing folder finally, and wanted to make 2 seperate cards for them.

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(This was a scheduled post)

On to happier topics – a colorful card

While the situation in the previous post continues and hopefully will only get better, the crafting fever has struck me again.

Maybe it’s because a few weeks ago I finally got inspiration for the birth announcement card, and making that sparkled my creative mind. Or maybe because it’s a way for me to relax. Anyway, before I can post you my recent makes I still have a backlog of cards to show you.  The birth announcement card will be posted after the baby is born, ofcourse.

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The first card I’d like to show you is one I really loved, such vibrant colours! Made around august last year, and used as a “sorry!” card – I had forgotten my aunts big birthday party – I felt so bad that I had totally forgotten about it!

I can’t remember exactly how I made it – was it distressink + water on an acryllic block, then pressed onto the paper or was it also chunks of salt onto the card? I think I did put salt on the card.Then I clear embossed the flower edge on the bottom of the main frame, and used caran ‘d arche crayons to colour it in and make the contrast a bit better – it wasn’t very visible with the light purple. The swirls stamps is from Designs by Ryn, and also colored with the caran d’ache water soluble crayons. The flowerborder, central flower stamp and flower on the bottom strip are from Chocolate Baroque. The central flower is again colourd with the crayons. Then I added some gold tinsel embossing and white and black highlights and the sentiment with a clear stamp alphabet sheet (can’t remember the name).

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Matting the card and adding that glittery ribbon finished the card. I even made a sort of matchin envelope, with a stamp from chocolate baroque which I inked up with tattered rose and/or old paper distress ink, then sprayed some water over it very lightly and stamped it. I wanted a watery, faded look, with low contrast to the background.

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Daqadoodles13_09_25_001510Although not perfect ( I did make some mistakes here and there), I really like this card, love the colours.

 

On the brink of life and death – let’s hope life wins twice.

New lives – in more ways then one.

Here I am, one week before my third baby is due.  It’s been – and still are – times of extremes. I’m about to give life to a baby boy, while my 12 year old niece is fighting for her life in the hospital. She had an accident on the 6th of june and has been in the IC ever  since, her life hanging by a thread. And if she survives, what life will she be able to lead? I don’t want to say more in public about this than her mother (my oldest sister), so I won’t go into details about it. For all of us, a new life has started allready – no matter how you look at it. Let’s hope it will be a happy new life for all of us.

It’s understandably a difficult time for my family – my niece in the hospital, and my baby is due any moment. I am sure he will bring comfort, joy and strength to all of us, and I so wish that I can show him to Meg, and they can start their new life together. They will have a bond forever, at least to me they will. Is he with her now, in the twillight of life, while they both aren’t with us yet? Is he comforting her, wherever their spirits are now? I hope so.

I was raised catholic, but I do not think that is the path for me. I believe in “cosmos” – a greater thing in life – which is not necessarily God. God is just one of the faces of it. Call me an atheist, a pagan, treehugger – I don’t mind. As such, I do not really believe in praying to God, as in, asking Him for a miracle. I do believe in praying and using a focus point to send positive energy too. For some, the focus point is God, and that way, the positive energy is focused and sent into the universe. Faith can move mountains. I might have mentioned it before: the snowball effect.

The snowball effect of positiviness

Imagine you go out in the morning, walking to your car / work /  busstop / trainstation. You pass a stranger on the street, who looks rather grumpy. Maybe you are grumpy too as it’s early. Easiest is to just ignore eachother and go on your way. But what if you look him/her in the eye, really see this person, this being, and say “goodmorning” with a smile? Smiling eventually makes you feel better. (I know from working as a waitress – sometimes I didn’t feel like being cheerful, but ofcourse I was friendly and smiling at people, and not soon after I would be genuinely smiling, I’d feel better and be cheerful. I know this doesn’t always work, but might work for normal grumpiness). So that is the effect on yourself.

Acknowledge existence

Now the effect on the stranger. Maybe he/she felt very lonely, unimportant, had a bad start of the day or something sad has happened. Maybe your smile and greet can bring a smile on his/her face. Maybe he’ll feel noticed, and feel seen. Nothing is worse then being ignored – it’s like your existence, your very being, is denied. That is why I never ignore a begger, homeless person, or people you feel uncomfortable around: being ignored is very painful. It is hard sometimes to look someone in the eye, greet, and move on, (without giving money, or buying the homelss newspaper) – but I force myself to do it. The least I can do is give them a smile and a greeting – acknowledge their existence.

Appreciate existence

Now, not only acknowledge their existence, but somehow, in truely seeing or looking at a person, you can make a person feel valued, be appreciated and worthy of existence. So, that stranger. Maybe he’ll feel a bit better. Maybe he’ll greet the next person he meets in turn: it could be the busdriver who is looked in the eye and greeted, maybe even smiled at. By smiling from the heart, you make a person feel welcome, feel appreciated. A person feels better about him/herself, and feel better about life, and want to do better in life – make other people feel that way too.
It might not work for everyone, but I’ve experienced this the first time in high school – I wasn’t one of the popular girls, more a quiet and shy girl who felt like not fitting in. One of the more popular boys one day asked me a question about something in the lunch break (no idea what the question was) – but he made me not only feel like I existed – he made me feel like I was appreciated.  He looked me in the eye, and treated me with respect, with value. He saw me. It’s not like he was hitting on me or absently asked a question – he was calm and focused. I was impressed by it – I never thought he’d speak to me, or at least not as sincere as he did then. I felt respected, worthy of existence, so to say. It’s not like this happened all the time he spoke to people, but just that one time made a huge impression on me. I wanted to be like this too: to be able to really see a person and make this person feel valued, feel acknowledged, appreciated just and accepted just the way this person is inside, not just how others categorize this person.

Maybe that busdriver smiles more at the people coming into the bus, greeting them more cheerfully. And maybe those people are a bit more positive.

All these little bits of positiviness give off a vibe – have you experienced the feeling of solidarity after a country has won an important soccer game? The positive vibe in a meeting room, the energy, when everyone is excited to get started on the new project, to do his best and to give his all? This positive vibe, positive energy can have huge effects could have been started by a single smile in the morning.

Healing thoughts

So I believe in positiviness, in healing thoughts. Ofcourse, I too am not always the sunshine in the house, I have plenty of grumpy and negative moments, but I try. I keep thinking of posibillities, for Meg, rather then impossibilities. I keep thinking of rehabilitation, recovery for Meg, instead of the long way it will be and the limits she might have.

Normal life continues – normal activities take place, we still laugh at jokes, have fun with our kids and cherish moments together. It is needed, for Meg.

We too burn a candle for Meg (albeit one on batteries, I don’t dare leave a burning candle out with young kids around, not even if I’d put it high up).

We too “pray” for a good recovery and send healing thoughts her way.

Will you think of her too, even though you don’t know her? Send some loving thoughts her way, send her strength, send her comforting thoughts and feelings of safety.

Miracles happen – let Meg’s recovery be one.

 

Card display

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A while ago I made a card display rack, meant for projects in progress. Or rather, cards that I still needed to finish, but when they were stacked away they didn’t get finished. I haven’t put the display rack back up after the move, but it didn’t really work in the way I hoped it would, it didn’t make me finish the cards faster :P.

Making the rack was fun though. It is made from a wooden childsafety fence for the bottom or top of stairs.

Moved, but still here!

Still here, but not really crafting, because of the following reasons:

- I moved house;

- I am still pregnant (7 months now) and it limits me (less sleep or no sleep, no heavy lifting due to pelvisissues etc;

- It took a while for craftsupplies to be stored properly;

- It takes a while for a new routine to settle in;

- There are still boxes to unpack and furniture to assemble;

- I’m having some pelvis issues due to

- in the process of selling the old appartment

- tired from all of the above.

 

But the crafting vibe is coming back, especially after having fired up my pc finally and having read a few rss feeds.  (unfortunately, can’t read all 1000+ missed blogpost)

Here is another card of mine which I made a while back, I think I made it for my grandmother, so should be around October.

I used a wallpaper sample, stamp from Chocolate Baroque, Caran D´ache Neon Colors, distress ink, gold embossing powder, embossing folder, clearstamp with sentiment, the dege is a celtic frame cheery lynn die if I recall correctly.

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AWOL – where have I been?

(Scroll down to see a gallery of about 30 previously unposted cards!)

Well, I’ve been busy again, with lots except cardmaking.

I sent half my relatives&friends christmascards after 4th of January (maybe a handfull got them in time as I brought those with me, but hadn’t finished the rest yet). The other half of the relatives&friends didn’t get a card. Who did or did not get a card was kind of random, I had printed out the adresses on stickers, and just took a card, scanned the list to see who would match with the card, of the other way around.

Before that I was busy with christmas, buying a house, renovating our appartment to put it up for sale, and being pregnant again. I still am, don’t worry, but the most tiring weeks are over, I don’t crash in bed at 20:30hrs anymore. The appartment isn’t up for sale yet, there are still a few renovation works to be done and to be honest, I want to move out before we put it up for sale, as I just don’t want the stress of getting the house in a showroom kind of state, with all sorts of stuff tucked away (where??) and the kids toys not all over the place, and everything clean and spotless. Not to mention, taking the bigger stuff out of the house (oh and the kids) when there would be visitors, things like the stroller(s). So, we’ve also been planning the moving, and some renovations / freshening up in the new house. It doesn’t look like crafting time anytime soon, my crafting stuff is too efficiently tucked away to take it out. (Well, I can get to it, it’s not in boxes, but it’s spread in 3 cupboard which are not near eachother. And as it takes up quite some time, I rather not start crafting untill after I’ve moved.)

I still had lots of unposted cards, so I’ll show you now in almost random order.

Most used stamps: Chocolate Baroque and Design by Ryn.

Most used materials: Distress ink and Caran D’ache (or was it arche?) Neon colors.

Most used technique: stamping (duh), masking, sponging. Some dry and heat embossing as well, and some dies are used.

You’ll see all pictures in the slideshow gallery first, beneath that is the thumbnail gallery. Most cards deserve a bit more spotlight though, as ofcourse details get lost on thumbnail size images :P. Maybe I”ll show them full size in a post another time.

Want to know more details about used materials or how I did it? Just ask, I am be happy to answer!

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