2019 Cards

If you don’t want to read the nuances about the cards I created in 2019, this is where you can see them all by month of creation. It can also be a place to get some inspiration for your own cards!

January

February

March

April

May

June

July

August

September

October

November

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Noel Candle cross stitch card

This card wasn’t too bad to make. I had several delays getting it assembled due to house construction. It’s hard to make time for everything or have motivation in general to work on things.

Like the last cross stitch card this came from a 1980s kit. Everything comes ready to make the card, including the envelope. Due to life circumstances I decided to work on these cards since I need access to minimal materials to finish them off.

With this card I ended up searching for something to help with the metallic thread. There are several french knots in this pattern that are all to be done in metallic thread. Problem is, it frays and gets caught on itself when pulling the knot through. I ended up searching a cross stitching group on Facebook that I’m in and found someone recommended “Thread Magic.” A store locally had it and I had some money left on a gift card to use there so I ventured out to get some of this stuff.

It wasn’t as magical as I had hoped. I ran the metallic thread through the tiny container at least twice and it still had trouble staying together and being “smooth” when making the knot or pulling through the fabric. Since I have it I will probably try it again on future projects in hopes that it will be a more successful venture.

Overall I think the card turned out nice. I’m not sure what to do with these, but they are now in my inventory of cards pile.

Stitching

Started: May 23

Finished: June 20

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With Heartfelt Sympathy (2)

This is the first time I’ve “repeated” a card. I try so hard to make each card unique and they still are as minor things are different. I felt that a white/cream card and my flower and butterfly embossing folder with sympathy stamp work so well together.

I’m still new to stamping and am trying to get used to the fact that some cards are going to look similar since the stamps don’t change. For the last couple of years I’ve had access to my Cricut and printers so I was able to use different fonts and create new things all the time. Now it’s a bit different with access to a limited number of supplies.

With this card I did do something very different and found a second stamp with text that fits with the theme of the card.

As you can see I used the same ink color inside. I did not emboss it (clear embossing powder on the ink) like I did with the outside. This card is also different because I used the embossing folder directly on the card creating texture inside.

Whew so much use of the word embossing this time!

To finish off the card I took a larger stamp I have to the back of the envelope. Usually I use lots of stickers, this time I decided to add something that won’t get ripped off in the mail. I have noticed with the clear rubbery stamps you can affect the way the ink appears. This time I dragged the ink pad across and it created the lines. Normally I would dab it which creates a more printed “dotted” look. Just something to keep in mind as you get started with stamps.

I’m still learning with stamps so you can see where I had a little hiccup I guess? My hand jumped a bit when I was pulling it up and it left a little shadowing. I may also be pushing the stamp down too hard. I’m guessing it doesn’t need near the pressure I put on it which may have also caused the extra ink deposits.

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Joy cross stitch card

If you look below you will see that I stitched this card a while back. It’s taken a while to get up the energy to assemble the card.

This pattern came from a 1988 kit I inherited from one of my mom’s friends. She has a ton of crafting things and cross stitch isn’t as easy for her any more so I have been able to take some of the kits and magazines to keep using them.

I’m usually not much for Christmas, but I’m still in the process of moving so my options are more limited with what projects I can work on. This project took a little bit of time as it’s small. The gold filament was also a challenge to work with. You don’t want sweaty hands with it that’s for sure!

This kit came with everything except the tape to hold the card together. Luckily I have double sided tape on hand from all my previous cards. The card has 3 panels, you put the cross stitch into the middle and fold a panel over to hide it. They also provide a card to go behind the cross stitch to help with stability.

Like usual I struggled with getting the pattern tight, you can see there it gaps from paper a bit. If I did this one again I would also cut down the fabric a little closer to the design. It was a bit close to the edges making the inside crinkle up a bit.

Overall a pretty easy project, just took a long time to put it together. Originally I was going to raffle off the card and send it to whoever won. Then I realized that it is a bit too early for Christmas. I can’t even claim Christmas in July yet!

Stitching

Started: March 19

Finished: April 20

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Class of 2021

It’s finally here! My second project finish of the year. This was a super fast project that I designed myself. The font did need to be tweaked after typing in the text to make it look right. If you would like to see the first graduation project I did for her sister a few years back, you can find that post here.

I somehow managed to make the triangles different on the pattern and had to fix as I went while stitching.

My niece is into grey and pink right now, but her school colors are dark blue and grey. I compromised with the triangles standing in for school colors and the text using a variegated pink thread. I didn’t plan for the 21 to be the darkest part, but I’m not mad that’s how it turned out.

To keep with the light and neutral theme I chose a white frame for finishing.

Stitching

Started: March 11

Finished: March 18

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Bounce

This was one of the longest cross stitch I’ve had probably ever. After completing 50+ cross stitch cards in a year I was a bit burned out. I started this project right after finishing the card project and really struggled to keep up the motivation.

My niece’s looming graduation put me into high gear to get this one complete. After letting this sit for several months I finally picked it up again and really focused. The challenge of this pattern was all the odd stitching.

It was beyond just straight whole stitching, there were quarter and three-quarter and what were who knows what fraction ones that I converted to be something standard.

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By early 2021 I was finally making some progress. I even managed to take pictures along the way. I’m not sure what skill level this pattern was meant to be, but as someone who has many many hours of cross stitching under my belt, this one was downright hard and frustrating. 

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Even with much concentration I still managed to miss-count and make the pattern my own, but not on purpose. At some point I gave up and just kept pushing forward to eventually get to this stage.

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There are a lot of details. Tigger is cute, until you have to backstitch each odd shaped stripe. It really makes everything pop. There is a reason for backstitching! It was nice that everything was one color. 

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For anyone who follows this now you know why it has been such a long time since my last post. And a very long story about a house that has made life all the more interesting and annoying.

Stitching

Started: November 29, 2019

Finished Stitching: February 15, 2021

Finished (with backstitching): March 9, 2021

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Grandma turns 90!

It’s not everyday you know someone who has been around for nine decades. My husband’s grandma now has. We’re having lunch with her to celebrate along with other members of the small family.

Her husband also reached 90, however he didn’t live much longer after that. We didn’t know his birthday would be the last we saw him well. Such is life, some people get more of it than others.

The card I had made for my husband’s grandpa can be found here. I came up with the idea easily since he was a former farmer and was always asking about how the farming community has been doing in Iowa and Nebraska. The card was a hit, so I had some pressure with getting this second card right.

I went through a few different ideas. If you want to see some of the inspiration cards I found on Pinterest you can see my Birthday Card board here. The first idea I had involved wallpaper. The second idea had me trying to print a border from a design pattern pack I downloaded recently. This was my third attempt.

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I found cardstock that had flower like the printed pattern I wanted to use. (That did not go well at all!) I knew I wanted to use my scripty stamps for happy and birthday, which left the 90th. I wanted a big bold font and found that Impact does the job nicely. I used gold adhesive foil for the letters.

To make sure I spaced out my glitter glue dots evenly I created a dotted line box in Illustrator. In a way I designed the elements in there, then used some of it in the Cricut Design space for the cutting. Like the cutout behind the 90 I drew around the 90th typed in AI. I made the layers different colors so it would pull 2 mats for the Cricut to cut on (the paper and foil). I printed just the dotted line box and made sure it fit inside of the frame, since I wanted the dots inside.

Double sided tape and foam tape were used to put it all together. The stamping is directly on the cardstock base. The foil has weird patterning on it from the press n’ seal I used, it wasn’t holding and the sticky stuff really sticks when you push it on too hard. Does give it an interesting texture though.

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Painted Birthday

Due to other things going on this year I haven’t had the time to make many cards. This one is for my mom. I thought I could come up with something fairly quickly to make and decided to grab some paints and glitter glue.

I picked the paint colors, then went to my stencil box to see what might look good. Once I was ready to start I decided I wanted to use a sponge and not brushes for this stencil. I like the look of it better and have an easier time with gradients.

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The lettering is sort of hand drawn. I have so many fonts (I download too many and have even found a site with commercial use fonts that are sometimes free or on sale). I found this handwriting type font and designed how I wanted ‘Happy Birthday’ to be laid out  in InDesign and printed it out.

I have a really old light table, not very big, yellow plastic thing that my mom got a garage sale for my brother. This thing is well over 30 years old by now, just needs a new light now and then. I used that to draw the lettering with my India Ink pens. I had to buy them for a college course (not 100% why they are so special, but they work well).

After I was done with the lettering I worked on the butterfly. I really like how it turned out. I wasn’t going to blend the colors, but I like that it happened. After I waited a little bit for it to dry I added the glitter glue. Black on the letters as highlights and “clear” I guess you could call it for the background and butterfly.

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Variety Pack

Spending the majority of 2019 making cross stitch cards I finally got around to using some of the new techniques gained to create some new custom cards.

It was time to up my game with my wallpaper cards. So many of the papers I have may look and/or feel really awesome to me, but they can be a bit bland to look at in a small format. With that in mind I took a few that I had pre-cut to assemble into a “standard” wallpaper card and took it up a level.

There is also a little bit of glitter glue involved since I bought a huge container of them.

Cricut cutout

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Embossing

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Stamping

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Upcycled pieces

 

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With Heartfelt Sympathy

When you have 9 funerals in 18 months, it changes your perspective on life. While I’ve had a really long break between funerals now, that streak having come to an end last year, I really feel for those who can’t come together right now when a family member dies.

I still can’t say the right things, and of course the cards I make are blank inside.

At work we were informed that a co-worker lost her husband over the weekend. We can’t sign a card as a company since we are all at home, so we were provided the address to send a card if we wanted.

Due to the aforementioned funerals I had actually purchased various sympathy stamps. But I still have a blank card to write something to and about someone I barely know. I can only hope that what I wrote is appropriate and what they need right now. I don’t try to be different, but I tend to be with the fact that I know reading yet another card that says I’m sorry for your loss is just another card. So I tried to say something, but not sure if it was right.

I used an embossing folder on a gradient grey cardstock and stamped in the blank area using a dark blue pigment ink. I then used clear embossing powder on the stamp. I attached the embossed and stamped part to folded white cardstock with double sided tape.

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May the Fourth…Be With You

First of all happy May the Fourth to all of you who celebrate! Since I have become much better at documenting projects on this blog it looks like my last May 4th card was in 2018. If you want to check it out you can here.

My brother and his family are really into Star Wars. Recently I went into the upper attic of our parents house and found some original Kenner Star Wars puzzles. I temporarily kidnapped them to make them and will be delivering them today to my brother and his family (on their porch of course) along with this card.

There were some missing pieces, but here are the puzzles:

Now to the card. I used the free fonts from dafont.com that have Star Wars looking text and some dingbats. Using the Cricut I cut out the words and images from a piece of black scrapbook paper. The base of the card is 110lb white cardstock.

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I recycled the letters, but held onto the characters and ships. Can’t let awesome confetti go to waste! Then some inspiration struck and I added a little glitter glue to them. I tried to get colors as close to the movies as possible. Believe it or not there is black glitter glue, I used that and silver for the tie fighter. Had to improvise for the more metal/grey color they are.

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For the inside I did the same idea as the front to finish the phrase with “be with you”.

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The pictures under the black are a collage from consecutive days of my 2016 daily calendar that I use for my Star Wars cards. I really like how the front turned out, but the inside ended up a little too far to the right, but you still get the idea of what’s underneath if you study it long enough. All of the art is from A New Hope.

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