Sketch Challenge #93

Happy Halloween, everyone! I hope you get all treats and no tricks this year!

I have a great sketch for you today, I hope you'll give it a try!



This week's samples were provided by Marianne! You can see more of her beautiful work on her blog, Petunia's Paper Passion! Thanks so much for the great sample cards, Marianne! That cupcake is so cute!





Got an idea for a cute card now? Get started! Be sure and come back here to link up your blog or gallery photo so we can all see!

To play along in this week's sketch challenge, simply upload a project using this week's sketch to your blog or online gallery then leave the link to that entry using the Inlinkz widget at the bottom of this post. And remember, you may use this sketch at any time. Feel free to re-post the sketch on your blog along with your card… then come back and leave a link for us so we may all see your cards!

We encourage everyone to take a few moments to visit and leave comments for the other participants. Comments are a wonderful way to say thank you for sharing your creative project and inspires everyone to create.



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Vlog: some exciting news for Veteran's Day!

If you'd like to post a badge on your blog to remind yourself to come see the bloghop on Veteran's Day weekend -  they're now posted on the bloghop page:
http://operationwritehome.org/bloghop.html

See you at the hop!

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Featured Cardmaker: Susan S., Simpsonville, SC

Hello everyone! This week I have the pleasure of introducing you all to Susan and to share a beautiful group of her cards that are sure to inspire some creativity.  Susan does not have a blog (when I ask she said..."not yet" — so we might be able to talk her into starting one :) so please be sure to say hello and leave her your comments here on this post.


How long have you been stamping?
I began scrapbooking about 10 years ago.  My first projects were very simple with paper and few purchased stickers and computer printed journaling.  I taught myself by reading magazines, going to make & take demos, and supplier websites. I incorporated stamping in to scrapbook and card projects about 4 years ago.  My collection of stamps has increased significantly in the past 2 years as my card making projects increased.


Do you have a craft room or specific area where you stamp/craft?
Yes!!  I am fortunate enough to have a craft room set up in our bonus room, complete with it's own bathroom (very convenient).  It is really funny to remember that I started my scrapbooking interest with a shoebox sized plastic container of scrap papers and a few 12 x 12 printed sheets.  Now I have a room full of paper, embellishments, tools, ribbons, etc.  I could start my own store.  Y'all know what I mean :)


What are your favorite stamp/craft products?
My all time favorite tool is my Craft Robo (like Silhoutte) and Klic N Kut software that I received as a Christmas gift several years ago.  I can create my own embellishments with this tool and software.  I also like to use embossing folders and dies (QuicKutz, Spellbinders) with my Epic Six.  I have the QuicKutz hand tool for quick 2 x 2 dies also. I admit it, I am addicted!


Do you have a favorite technique?
I like to use flowers on many of my projects, but I also enjoy incorporating ribbon, string (twine, hemp or jute), lace, doilies, and buttons.  I enjoy using my sewing machine on paper projects too.  Sometime soon I plan to try using actual fabric pieces on some projects.
 
The group of cards that I just sent to OWH were made from scraps, large and small, left over from scrapbook projects. I challenged myself to create cards without cutting from any new 12 x 12 sheets and put those scraps to good use! I was pleased with the results. 


Are there colors you love to include on your cards?
My most favorite color is pink and like to use that for cards for the ladies.  For the gentlemen, I like to use shades of brown with greens or blues.  For a change, I try various color combinations and sometimes the best ones turn out to be 3 or 4 scraps that fall together in the scrap pile and catch my eye.


How did you hear about Operation Write Home?
I found out about OWH earlier this year on a website link. I was so excited to find a way to share my papercrafting hobby with our military heroes. I set out to make 20 cards to send, but proudly sent my first group of 50+ cards to OWH back in February 2011.

   
What motivates you to make cards for our heroes?
I guess you can say that it's in the family. I was born in a Air Force Base hospital while my father served stateside in the 1950's. Both of my grandfathers served in the Army during WWI. I have an uncle served in the Army and was reported MIA briefly during WWII. My father-in-law served in the Army during WWII. Not only do the heroes sacrifice to keep our country and the world a safer place, their families sacrifice too. It is an honor and a privilege for me to make cards for the heroes to send back home to their loved ones.  I think about the heroes and their loved ones when I create the cards and I put my heart into each card that I make for them. This is a wonderful way for me to utilize my God given creativity for a great purpose!


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Polka Dots

 Thanks for a great challenge last week, your Thank You cards were beautiful!   
Thanks for the wonderful inspiration too –

This week our challenge theme is POLKA DOTS, we challenge you to make cards for our heroes to send home to their family and friends using polka dots! I can’t wait to see your card creations! 

I also read on Facebook the other night that Sandy had to stop packing boxes because she didn't have enough Birthday, Miss You & Thank You cards...  If she's your shipper you might consider combining those themes with your polka dots, hint, hint, hint...  (:

Our sample card maker this week is Elizabeth!  To see more of her wonderful art work please visit her Visions of Paper blog.  She also has something special on her blog for you!


Thank you Elizabeth for sharing your awesome creativity with us!



To play along in this week's challenge, simply upload a project using this week's challenge to your blog or online gallery then leave a direct link to your project using the Inlinkz widget at the bottom of this post.  And remember, you may use this challenge at any time.  Feel free to re-post the challenge on your blog along with your card… then come back and leave a link for us so we may all see your cards!

We encourage everyone to take a few moments to visit and leave comments for the other participants.  Comments are a wonderful way to say thank you for sharing your creative project and inspires everyone to create. 
Thanks for stopping by and hope you join in the fun!

To play along this week, please enter your name, URL and email address in the link below then press next step and select the photo of your creative project.  An icon will appear on the blog featuring the photo you selected.  If the photo doesn’t appear right away, don’t worry, it will after the page has been refreshed.



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Tutorial - Woven Heart Card

Special thanks to Kathryn for today's tutorial! You can see more of her great work on her blog, Kathryn's Cards. Kathryn is helping us transition from Christmas into Valentines. with this woven heart card. Remember, your shipper should have all your Christmas cards by October 31. And if you're having a hard time wrapping your mind around Valentines while you're still designing your Halloween outfit, just think of them as "I love you" cards. Love is good all year round!






This card idea came by way of my mother. I can remember her making these woven hearts out of old file folders when I was in elementary school. This is a modified version that will fit on an A2 card and also has a pocket for a small note!

To make the heart, you should choose two contrasting colors of the thinnest cardstock you have. You want something thicker than copy paper but not as thick as a good card base. I used the paper that comes in packs of 50 from JoAnn or Michael’s.

Cut one strip of each color 2 inches by 6 inches.



I used the second largest “large scallop oval” from Spellbinders Nestabilities to make the edges of the heart. The die is 2.75 inches by 3.5 inches. Thread the cardstock strip through the Nestability so you will only cut the top edge off. (Thanks, Sandy- I learned this on OWHtv!) In the photo, the cutting ridge is facing down. Secure with a bit of painter’s tape so the die doesn’t slip out of place while you’re setting up your die cut machine and running it through. Note: If you don’t have Nestabilities, you could simply trace a 2-inch circle at the top and trim carefully with a pair of straight scissors.



This is what it will look like after you use the die.



On the wrong sides, use a ruler and a pencil to mark three lines 4.25 inches up from the narrow straight side, one half inch apart. I laid the paper on my cutting mat while I did this to make sure my lines would be parallel. Trim with scissors or a paper trimmer, being sure to only cut to the 4.25-inch mark. Erase marks gently.




Weave strips together. This is easiest and you’ll have less wrinkles if you weave nearer the bottom of the loose ends and then gently work the strips up when you’re finished. It takes some finesse and patience, so don’t be discouraged if the first one you make gets a wrinkle or two.

Two rows done:



Weaving the front is done:



Woven strips are worked up to the top of the slits:



When the front is finished, flip the heart over and weave the back.





I used photo splits to hold the loose ends together because it was hard to get my ATG into such a small space.




If you’re in a rush or tired of weaving, you can cheat on this last weaving step. To cheat, cut a 2-inch square of scrap paper. Fold all four pieces of one color over so they’re hiding behind the heart, adhere the square on top of these strips, then adhere the four other strips to the top of the square.

If any of the strips are visible from the front, you can trim a little off the back.



Your heart is finished. Add it to a card however you like. If you want to use the heart as a pocket, apply adhesive only in the areas shown in the photo below so that it can open.





If you want a smaller heart, try cutting two strips to 1.5 inches by 4.5 inches.

Cut two slits (instead of 3) one-half inch apart, making them 3.25 inches long. For my sample of the smaller card, I traced a circle and cut the rounded parts by hand instead of using a die. A large corner rounder would also work well.


Thanks again, Kathryn for this great tutorial! The pictures make it so easy to see.


Remember, anyone can submit an idea for a Tuesday Tutorial. And if you'd like to do one, but don't have an idea, just write me at kate@operationwritehome.org. I have ideas, and will help you put it together.






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Important note to read

Please check out the notice posted on the Homefront Blog yesterday. Thanks!

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Sketch Challenge #92

Hi Cardmakers! If you watched this week's OWH TV, you heard Sandy put out a request for AnyHero mail. The shippers are in need, so let's please be sure to include a bit with each package! And it just so happens that today's sample cards are super cute AnyHero cards, feel free to CASE them!

First, check out the sketch! Remember that all our sketches are designed for A2 sized cards (4.25" x 5.5") since that is what we prefer to receive.



Our sample maker this week is the talented Marsha. She has a blog called Gramma's Room, be sure and visit to see more of her beautiful work. Thanks for the awesome sample cards, Marsha!

(In this first sample, the star image that Marsha used is a free digi that you can get right here on the OWH Digi page!)





Everybody read to go, now? Don't forget some AnyHero cards, please, and be sure to come back and link up your card so we can all visit!

To play along in this week's sketch challenge, simply upload a project using this week's sketch to your blog or online gallery then leave the link to that entry using the Inlinkz widget at the bottom of this post. And remember, you may use this sketch at any time. Feel free to re-post the sketch on your blog along with your card… then come back and leave a link for us so we may all see your cards!

We encourage everyone to take a few moments to visit and leave comments for the other participants. Comments are a wonderful way to say thank you for sharing your creative project and inspires everyone to create.




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K 'n K Designs OWH Fundraiser Blog Hop

Happy Saturday OWH card makers!

It's Jan checking in again today to let you know we have a K 'n K Designs OWH Fundraiser blog hop going on!


You'll see lots of fabulous cards made with K 'n K Designs & Dee Dee Anderson's special OWH images like the one above!  There's a fabulous prize package being awarded to 2 lucky winners from K 'n K Designs too!  

Your next stop on this hop is at my blog 

We hope you have time for some inspiration and eye candy hopping along with us this weekend!!

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Featured Cardmaker: Lisa E., Taylorsville, NC

No doubt everyone is busy packing up those last Christmas cards for the fast approaching Oct. 31st deadline! I have some lovely cards to share with you this week that should get you in the mood to switch gears back to everyday designs. This week's inspiration comes to us courtesy of Lisa in North Carolina. Lisa blogs over at Lisa E. Design Blog so be sure to pay her a visit and of course leave her a shout out in the comments section here too!


How long have you been stamping?  4 years

Do you have a craft room or specific area where you stamp/craft?
My guest room doubles as a crafting space. Every dresser drawer is full of supplies. My stamps are stored in what is supposed to be the linen closet.  (The linens are in a box under the bed! I use those stamps a lot more.)


What are your favorite stamp/craft products?
Stampin’ Up! Stamps and cardstock mostly along with Hero Arts and Hampton Arts. Papertrey Ink also has great cardstock. I’m a pattern paper addict.  Basic Grey, Crate Paper, October Afternoon really fit my style.


Do you have a favorite technique?
I like to try all kinds of things. Embossing was one of the first things I learned and I still love it.

Are there colors you love to include on your cards?
One of the best things about cardmaking is the chance to work with every color at some point. You can try out a color you aren’t necessarily drawn to on a card without making a huge commitment. My all time favorite color is Stampin’ Up!’s Baja Breeze.

  
How did you hear about Operation Write Home?
I saw some posts on Splitcoaststampers and checked it out. I had tried unsuccessfully to sell some of my growing stash of cards and was delighted to find a home for the cards I love to make.

What motivates you to make cards for our heroes?
When I was a child almost every man in my family was in the military at some point. I was 10 years old before I realized that all little boys didn’t grow up and go off to war. My Dad is a veteran having been drafted for Korea when he was 18. He often told me how alone he felt when he first arrived there. My aunts have talked about being the ones waiting stateside while their husbands were away during WWII and Korea. 


With two long wars going on, it seems even more important to find a way to say thank you. I just imagine that I’m one of those family members waiting at home. It would mean so much to get a card with a note from overseas. It is a tangible connection and a keepsake. I’m very touched by the stories I read on Operation Write Home website. It makes our work of creating a card an honor.

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OWHtv: Episode 33

This week: Some cute images from The Angel Company, and the coloring made each one into a different ethnicity. Stump Sandy card at the end has an image by The Greeting Farm.


Which is your favorite?






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Thank You!!

 Thanks for a great challenge last week, your Masculine cards were great!   
Thanks for the wonderful inspiration too –

This week we challenge you to make Thank You cards for our heroes to send home to their family and friends!      
I can’t wait to see your card creations! 

Our sample card maker this week is Kathy!  To see more of her wonderful art work please visit her blog My Creative Impulse.



Thank you Kathy for sharing your awesome creativity with us!



To play along in this week's challenge, simply upload a project using this week's challenge to your blog or online gallery then leave a direct link to your project using the Inlinkz widget at the bottom of this post.  And remember, you may use this challenge at any time.  Feel free to re-post the challenge on your blog along with your card… then come back and leave a link for us so we may all see your cards!

We encourage everyone to take a few moments to visit and leave comments for the other participants.  Comments are a wonderful way to say thank you for sharing your creative project and inspires everyone to create. 
Thanks for stopping by and hope you join in the fun!

To play along this week, please enter your name, URL and email address in the link below then press next step and select the photo of your creative project.  An icon will appear on the blog featuring the photo you selected.  If the photo doesn’t appear right away, don’t worry, it will after the page has been refreshed.



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Tutorial - Polar Bear Card

This week's tutorial features another card I fell in love with during the hop. Thanks to Lauren of Paper Love. When I told her how much I loved her card, she agreed to make another one and write a tut for us along the way!




Supplies:
Sheet of white cardstock
Sheet of blue cardstock
Snowflake stamp
Pigment ink in white or embossing ink
White embossing powder
Blue pigment ink
Gray/Cream pigment ink
Heat tool
Thin, black marker



Punches: (Or an adjustable circle/oval cutter)
4 circle punches in different sizes: 1-3/4”, 1”, 5/8”, and 1/2” are the sizes I used
2 oval punches in different sizes: 1-3/4” x 1” and 1-3/8” x 3/4” are the sizes I used
Word window punch: 1-3/4” x 3/8” is the size I used



Cut the blue cardstock into an A2 size card. From the white cardstock, cut a 5-1/2” x 2-1/2”.

Tear off a 5-1/2” edge about a half inch off and use the blue pigment ink to distress the torn edge.



Stamp the snowflake stamp using the white pigment ink (or embossing ink) in various places on the blue card.

Use the white embossing powder and cover the stamped snowflakes. Use the heat tool to emboss the snowflakes.



Use the punches (or circle/over cutter) to cut the following:
- Two large circles (1-3/4”)
- Two medium circles (1”)
- Two small circles (5/8”)
- Four extra small circles (1/2”)
- Two large ovals (1-3/4” x 1”)
- Two small ovals (1-3/8” x 3/4”)
- One word window (1-3/4” x 3/8”)



Cut the word window in half - these will be the arms of one of the baby polar bear.
Cut the rounded tips of one of the small ovals to create the snouts of the baby polar bears.



Cut off one rounded tip of the large oval to create the snout of the mama polar bear. Refer to the photo.



Distress the edges of all of the punched pieces using the gray/cream pigment ink.



Glue the distressed, white piece onto the card - only glue the sides and bottom edges of the paper. You will need to able to slide punched pieces behind the “snow.”



Glue one of the large circles as the mama polar bear body. Glue the two small circles as ears onto one of the large circles. Half of the circle will be behind the “snow.” Refer to the photo.



Glue the small oval behind the “snow.” Half of the oval will be shown. Glue two of the extra small circles as ears behind a medium circle to make a baby polar bear head and glue it to the card overlapping the body and mama bear head. Refer to the photo.



Glue the large snout to the mama bear and a small snout to the baby bear. Refer to the photo.



Assemble the other baby polar bear by glue the arms, extra small circle and small snout the the medium circle. Refer to the photo.



Glue the last baby polar bear to the card, overlapping the mama bear’s head. Using the black marker draw in the noses and eyes.



Lauren, thanks again so much for writing today's tutorial!

Everyone, please remember, if you see a card or technique that would make a good tutorial, or if you'd like to write a tutorial but need some ideas, please write me at kate@operationwritehome.org.



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