Heads Up!

This is a little teaser of an announcement...  ;)

Make sure to check back here on Friday, July 2nd for something new and exciting here at Aspiring to Creativity!

Look forward to surprising you then!

ATC team

O Canada!

Last night was my last class until the fall. With Canada Day just around the corner, I planned the class around creating a pennant banner.

These pennants are 4" wide by 6" long, and you can cut 10 out of 1 12 x 12 cardstock.

We are so blessed to live in a free and prosperous country. I love Canada and thought it would be a good idea to create a patriotic banner for Canada Day. The students that took the class loved the pennant banner as well.

Here is a close up view of the banner in 2 sections. You can click on the photo to view it larger.

You can make all sorts of pennant banners - birthday, congrats, birth, anniversary, shower, graduation, and more. The pennants can be any size you wish. Try it out and see what your imagination creates. And to all the Canadian readers, have a great Canada Day on July 1st!

Here is the template that I created for my class in how to cut out the 10 pennants from a 12 x 12. Remember, if you are changing the size of your pennants, you will need to come up with your own measurements and template.(You may have to click on it to view it larger)

Circut's Designers Calendar - Maple leaves
             Plantin Schoolbook - heart               
Spellbinders - Standard circles, & Scalloped circles
Glitter Ritz - Fire Engine Red & White Cool Highlight
Ink - Color Box Cranberry Red, VersaMark and white and red embossing powder, UTEE (on the small maple leaves)
White & black gel pens
Fiskar's Apron Lace border punch
Lots of ribbon
white eyelets & Crop-a-dial II

Birthday Wishes

This is the latest addition to my PTI gallery. :)

This is the first card of a set that I'm creating specifically for a co-worker! It was inspired by Cindy Royal's card here. I'm not nearly the seamstress that she appears to be so my card is meant to look random and a little rushed. All the same, my future cards using this technique will look better!

I also finally got to try my Impressibilities! I tried to emphasize the impression a bit by inking around edges but I pressed too hard with my foam blender. Oh well. It still has a nice, softening effect. Next time I mean to do that I will just put the Impressibilities plate back over the pattern. It's meant to go along with the inking of the Fancy Tag in the middle.

I embossed the sentiment in white and it wasn't as perfect as I would like but it is acceptable to me.

This is meant to be a masculine card but it could really be an either/or card.

The interior (not shown) is stamped with "It's Your Day" from Star Prints in Terracotta Tile ink on a white paper insert.

{Supplies--all Papertrey Ink unless otherwise specified}
  • Cardstock: Smokey Shadow, Terracotta Tile, Orange Zest
  • Patterned Paper: Dotty Biscotti (envelope liner)
  • Stamps: Daily Designs Sentiments
  • Ink: VersaMagic Cloud White Dewdrop, VersaMark
  • Ribbon: Terracotta Tile Saddle Stitch
  • Other tools: Filigree white embossing powder; Dies: A2 Envelope Liner, Spellbinders Fancy Tags; Spellbinders Impressibilities: Pebbles; sewing machine; ink blending foam

Celebrate Friendship

Well, since I'm pretty much ready for my class this evening and have some time, I thought I would quickly add another post  about using up my scraps.

More Scraps! Well this time it's just the 12" x 4 3/4" green pieces left over from a class, along with a bunch of cream pieces that have been collecting. The 2 different patterned papers used are not scraps. This card is inspired by Lisa Johnson's beautiful and elegant card toward the bottom of the linked posting - Year of Flowers: Roses.

I just loved the colors used and the simple elegance of the design. I do not have the same rosebud stamp (It's on my PTI wish list) and had to use what I had  including the use of a patterned paper rather than two colors of cardstock. Therefore, it is not nearly as elegant as Lisa's.

Since we have just recently decided to create our own storefronts connected with this blog, I thought why not make as many as I can out of these green pieces. (click on the 'Store' tab at the top of this blog to find & connect to the storefront links) We also plan to participate in a community moving market in August to sell our papercrafts. So making a dozen friendship cards with this in mind doesn't seem over done. I was surprised at how quickly I could put a dozen cards together. I guess when you have a plan and prepare everything first, in an organized manner, putting them together is a cinch. In less than a day they were completed. I just have the special sized envelopes left to make.

You see here the different versions; each only a slight difference like the flower stamp used, the ribbon color and the patterned paper.

Well, I hope that all you readers out there are still  finding the time to craft even though the summer weather has us all doing other things and keeping us busy. Keep up the good work

Going Through My Scraps Again

About a month ago, I decided to go through my box of scraps. As an instructor, making kits for my classes, I accumulate more scraps than the average paper-crafter, and it needed taking care of. In the process of this organization the thought came to me that I should be making my own kits from all the scraps so that I could just grab one when I had the time or needed to make a card quickly. So I sat down and drew several sketches and then proceeded to cut up my scraps as per the sketches. I then included the sketch in with the number of scrap pieces cut to specs.

This took me nearly a week, but boy, was it worth it. So without further ado, here are some of the cards made from those kits.

I made two of these red, white & black 'Thank You' cards; One each of the set below with all the navy patterned paper; And, 6 of the masculine 'Birthday Wishes' card. These are each slightly different due to the section of blue print paper used dictating where the ribbon and tag should go.

These are all for sale at my storefront along with many other of my creations. Take a peek!

Celebrate Duo

Sorry for the dark pictures! Remember that you can zoom in by clicking on them.

These cards were inspired by at least 3 different people!

It started out with Lisa Johnson's Sweet Blush and Soft Stone combos here and here. I pulled out my Soft Stone and 2 soft colors to go with it: the Sweet Blush and some Lemon Tart.

The embossed portion along with embellishments was inspired by Mariana Grigsby here.

My first step ended up disappointing me. PTI cardstock is rather thick and didn't take well to being embossed. The page ended up a little ragged and I debated about scrapping the whole idea. My mom tried to convince me to keep the pieces but I told her that if I didn't use them now, I'd never use them. So to appease the both of us, I reworked the concept in my head a bit. Why not distress?

So I took my Tim Holtz paper distresser and roughened the edges of each card piece so they looked ragged on purpose. I then used my Tim Holtz Distress Inks in Victorian Velvet (on the Sweet Blush) and Scattered Straw (on the Lemon Tart) to "muddy" the colors, as it were.

I was much happier.

The pearls and rhinestones are various sizes to add a little pizzazz.

The last bit of inspiration came from Nichole Heady (of course!) here. The ribbon is absolute genius! I'm not much with a sewing machine, but after a few tries, and some intervention from my mother!, I finally got this done. I would even do it again!

I was going to make these into baby cards but "Celebrate" is a more universally-friendly sentiment. These cards can be used for birthdays, weddings, anniversaries, Mother's Day, you name it. The interiors are blank.

Oh! One more bit of inspiration (that makes 4!)... I've been noticing that cards have been scored along the top of tall cards lately (for example here) and I love it! This was my first try at it.

{Supplies--all Papertrey Ink unless otherwise noted}
  • Cardstock: Soft Stone, Sweet Blush, Lemon Tart
  • Patterned Paper (envelope liners): Pretty Pastels and Egg Hunt
  • Stamps: Damask Designs
  • Ink: Berry Sorbet, Simply Chartreuse, Tim Holtz Distress Inks in Victorian Velvet and Scattered Straw
  • Ribbon: Berry Sorbet Twill and Simply Chartreuse Twill
  • Other tools: Sizzix Hello Friend embossing folder, adhesive pearls (dollar store), adhesive rhinestones (dollar store), Spellbinders Nested Butterflies, A2 envelope liner die

Ribbon Ideas

The designers at WPlus9 Design Studio are focusing on ribbon uses other than the usual bows and whatnot. Some of their ideas are just stunning!

Here are my favs:
Great tutorial!

(This one was not the one she did for this specific project but it's stunning!)


A few people feature "stick-on" ruffles, but my fav example of this technique is by Ashley Cannon Newell (non-WPlus9 designer) here (see below for pic).

A ribbon technique I keep meaning to try was inspired by my daughter's Gymboree shirt. Check out these beautiful tulips!

Trying to show the ribbon folding detail:

Where do you find your ribbon inspiration?

My Niece's Baptism

My husband's niece is being baptized today. I wanted to make her a card for her special day that featured mostly white with one pop of color. That pop of color was going to be the sun but I ended up having to add ribbon (a desired addition) to hide the mark made from the small scallop die I used. My intention had been to have just a black and white balloon, but it just didn't look right. I tried SEVERAL variations before settling on the one shown. It was done with Y21, used a little more in some places than others to achieve a touch of shading, and the Buttermilk Spica glitter pen (click to zoom).

My favorite thing about this card is the clouds! Those clouds were #1 on my list of must-haves from PTI on their May release. I used them to cut clouds out of my focal piece of cardstock and then impressed the background with both sides of the Linen & Canvas impression plate. I just love the effect! The focal is then popped up from the card using dimensional adhesives. I'm sure I got this idea from Maile Belles, one of my fav card designers. I then used one of the cloud cut-outs popped up over a cloud "hole." I shaded the bottom a bit with a W1 copic. The card looked a little empty still and my mom suggested little copic birds.

Overall, I'm not entirely pleased with my card but neither do I hate it.

{Supplies--all PTI unless otherwise stated}
  • Cardstock: Stamper's Select
  • Stamps: Up, Up & Away, Year of Flowers: Violets (sentiment)
  • Ink: Lemon Tart, Memento Tuxedo Black (Tsukineko), Brilliance Graphite Black (Tsukineko)
  • Ribbon: Lemon Tart Swiss Dot
  • Other tools: cloud dies, Linen & Canvas impression plate, small scalloped border die, Copics: Y21, W1, 100 (black), 0 (colorless blender), Spica: buttermilk

Paper Poppies

Aren't these beautiful?! Learn how to make them on Lisa Johnson's blog!

In Honor of Father - Class

Well, Thursday, June 10th, I had another class. We made two Father's Day cards with matching frame stands. One being more traditional; the other, a more unique pocket/tag card.

The Bamboo pocket/tag card was the popular item. I used the Cricut's Pagoda crtridge to cut the bamboo. With 12 students/kits for class that was 36 sections of bamboo to punch out after being cut on the cricut. Unfortunately, despite checking the settings, the Cricut didn't cut as cleanly as usual and I was having problems getting the bamboo out. So, I thought that it would go faster if each student would punch out their own set. It did not go as well as I thought it would, slowing down the production for those who had signed up. My apologies to my class.                                                                                                             .
This card was the favorite of the class.Of the two we made, it is my favorite as well.(Sorry about the blurry photo).

Saturday, June 26, 2010

I finally remembered to add the template I created for my class on how to cut the cardstock shape for this tag card's pocket.(You may need to click on it to view it larger)

Happy Wedding Day

I actually conceived of this idea BEFORE I sat down to craft. However, it exceeded my expectations!

I wanted PURPLE for this project and, unfortunately, Plum Pudding just didn't do it for me. NONE of my solid cardstock collection did it for me. So, I broke out my new Tim Holtz Distress Ink called Chipped Sapphire. Perfect! I still used Plum Pudding for the base (as you can see from the inside) and used an ink blending foam to apply it. I love that inked effect! I then used a die to cut the center out and then used that over my mat to stamp the frame. Next, I stamped the flourishes in Versamark and used fine detail silver embossing powder for a gorgeous effect!

The top layer was adhered using foam adhesives. Unfortunately, the one I used is really thick and so the card really fills the envelope! ;)

The interior has a few stamped flourishes and a Large Labels Spellbinder die cut and embossed layer. Only the word "happiness" is embossed in the sentiment.

And, of course, an envelope with a matching liner.

{Supplies--all Papertrey Ink unless otherwise noted}
  • Cardstock: Plum Pudding, Silver shimmer cardstock
  • Stamps: Fancy Flourishes, Fillable Frames #4, Delightful Dahlia, Heartfelt Basics
  • Ink: Tim Holtz Chipped Sapphire Distress Ink, Versamark
  • Other tools: Fillable Frames #4 die, A2 Envelope Liner die, Filigree Silver embossing powder, Spellbinders Large Lables die

Girly, You Rock!

This is the card for which I used many of the same supplies as this one. Sort of a matching set. I made it for a friend who was feeling down. Very excited about how it turned out!

I placed all the Distressed Stripes stamps randomly on a block and then stamped the background cardstock (unknown brand--10/$1!). I really liked how the stripes didn't always meet the edge. Kind of gritty... perfectionists would hate it! ;)

I stamped the Pure Poppy flower in the center with Versamark but you can't really tell.

I used white gel pen around the edge of the focal image mat, white ink around the red flower, green ink around the white sentiment flower and 5 little rhinestones around the front for some perfect finishing touches!

{Supplies--all Papertrey Ink unless otherwise specified}
  • Cardstock: green (unknown), Pure Poppy, Hawaiian Shores, Stamper's Select
  • Patterned Paper: Beautiful Blooms
  • Stamps: Signature Greetings, For the Graduate, Distressed Stripes, Beautiful Blooms II (on the Pure Poppy flower in the center)
  • Dies: Mat Stack 1, Beautiful Blooms #2
  • Ink: Versamark, Tuxedo Black, Simply Chartreuse, Versamagic Cloud White
  • Other tools: white gel pen (not PTI), rhinestones (happen to look like Hawaiian Shores! but they're from the dollar store)

Birthday Wishes

This card started only with the green cardstock. I got it for 10/$1!! Almost looks like PTI's Simply Chartreuse. So that made it easy to match with some PTI patterned paper. I took all the rest of the colors, as well as images, from the Beautiful Blooms paper: Hawaiian Shores and Pure Poppy and the Beautiful Blooms II stamp set.

I've been trying to use up scraps as I create them, so be prepared for a similar card coming up.

{Supplies--all PTI unless otherwise specified}
  • Cardstock: green (generic), Stamper's Select
  • Patterned paper: Beautiful Blooms
  • Stamps: Beautiful Blooms II, Asian Fusion
  • Ink: Pure Poppy, Hawaiian Shores, Tuxedo Black (Memento Dewdrop), Versamark Dazzle (Frost)
  • Felt: Hawaiian Shores
  • Other tools: Rickrack border die, Beautiful Blooms #2 dies, We R Memory Keepers Corner Chomper (1/2"), rhinestones (dollar store)

Well Wishing Set

When I saw this paper, I immediately pictured a tall card. When I pulled it out at home, I also pictured a scrapbooking page so I may have to go back and get another sheet. ;)

This set is the first of, hopefully, many that I plan on offering for sale (see our For Sale page). It has sort of a country charm feel to it and while it isn't to my usual taste, I'm pleased with it. I must be diversifying!

The first one is extraordinarily tall and I had to make a custom envelope for it. Actually, I had to make custom envelopes for all of them because they were all unusual sizes. ;) The card interiors are all blank.

Aside from cutting out the flowers and matting them, I went around each of the petals with a Sakura stardust glitter pen. I fussed incessantly with the sheer ribbon to make that bow! I'm not the crafter my mother is! ;)

I tried a couple of ideas for this card but only had to renovate this card once! The only change I would potentially make would be to thread some white embroidery floss in the button holes.

This card was supposed to turn out completely different but when I saw this Cuttlebug die I had yet to use, my ideas changed. I used a Xyron to get those fine little flowers adhered to the card. Gotta love those sticker makers! I definitely wish that I had embossed the Enchanted Evening cardstock in the background but c'est la vie!

  • Patterned paper: Upsy Daisy Designs - A New Day (Dream and Faith)
  • Cardstock: Papertrey Ink - Enchanted Evening and Stamper's Select
  • Stamp sets: Papertrey Ink - Big & Bold Wishes and Asian Fusion
  • Ribbon: Dollar Store (sheer) and Papertrey Ink - Enchanted Evening grosgrain
  • Buttons: Papertrey Ink - Enchanted Evening and Spring Rain
  • Other tools: Sakura stardust glitter pen, Cuttlebug die (Poppies) and We R Memory Keepers Corner Chomper (1/2")

Gallery Idol Finalist

I saw this card on the PaperCrafts Mag blog and absolutely LOVE it! Pure genius! You can find it on the contestant's blog here.

I Can Do That!

Ever see something that's been invented by someone else and say, "I can do that!"? Only all the time, right!?

When I saw these felt flower embellies by Melissa Bickford, I decided that I had to try it. With my own twist, of course. I don't have anything in the way of fabric, so I'll try crumpled patterned paper instead.

Another PTI Moment

Another beautiful Debbie Olsen card! Look at all the stamp sets and colors she coordinates! It's so fun! I'm in love!

Card Revisited

Remember this card? Well, I decided to try a couple of different things with it.

The card on the right represents my first card with sewing on it! I finally broke out the sewing machine and initiated it into the world of papercrafting. I didn't really like the effect as much as I thought I would because thread is thinner than you think. I guess I was hoping for something like the stitching on the ribbon or the effect my mom gets when she uses "faux stitching" (paper piercer and white gel pen). Regardless, it was still fun.

The card on the right is my fav! I used PTI's Sunshine impression plate to make a puddle-like effect on the background! This card was donated to a charity auction, along with several of my mother's numerous cards and Stef's collection.

The only other real differences from my previous/first card is the dark blue mat (my goal, lately, has been to add more layers to my cards) and the size. I can't believe we hadn't discovered A2 cards before!! All you have to do is slice an 8.5 x 11" paper in half!

All Papertrey Ink unless otherwise specified.
  • Cardstock: Stamper's Select, Spring Rain, Enchanted Evening
  • Stamps: Scattered Showers Additions, Fillable Frames #3 and Autumn Abundance
  • Ink: Enchanted Evening, Lemon Tart, Versamark
  • Ribbon: Enchanted Evening saddle stitch
  • Dies and Plates: Fillable Frames #3 and Sunshine impression plate
  • Other tools: sewing machine

The Sophisticated Man

These are cards that I put together for this morning's class titled 'The Sophisticated Man'. In order to see the finer details click on each image to enlarge the photo.

.This one turned out to my favorite of the set.

On the Labels Four shape I used the spellbinders die frame and a black gel pen to trace the inner edge to create a fine black border. The black stamp and sentiment are two separate stamps, each stamped with Brilliance ink and heat embossed with clear embossing powder. When I made this card at home it was easy to create. However, in class this morning, we had problems with the ink not working well along with the embossing powder. I finally was able to get everything to work for the students, but it was frustrating at the time that this glitch happened while teaching a class. Now, it is something to chuckle about; after all life rarely runs smoothly. 


Spellbinder's labels Four
Brilliance lack Graphite ink
Clear embossing powder
Black and Cream cardstock 

I had seen a card quite a while back that had this Rolled-back-frame where the paper was cut from nearly corner to corner and pulled back without folding it. While trying to come up with cards for a man this technique came back to me so I experimented with the concept and came up with this card.
Paper piercer
Craft knife/Exacter knife
Black GelPen
Versa Magic Wheat ink
Versa Magic Spanish Olive
Bronze brads
Darck Brown, and cream cardstock
 Double sided patterned paper

I just love the shiny masculine patterned paper for this next card..I used the second stamp technique to create the look of foliage in the background. This adds dimension to any stamped feature on a card.

Paper piercer
Versa Magic Jumbo Java ink
Dark Forest Green, Dark Navy, & Cream cardstock
Patterned paper 

This card was inspired from someone else's creation I had seen a while back. However, I was unable to find the blog, and person, to give proper credit to them. I did a couple of things differently.

I love the striped velum. I've had a package of it around for a few years and love using it when I can. Using my computer I printed onto the velum the sentiment.I just love using my 2 1/2" Xyron for adhering velum, amongst other things. The Birthday Wishes Labels Four frame - I covered the paper with Versa Mark and heat embossed it with clear. This darkened the color of the green cardstock while adding the shiny look for interest. Then using Spellbinders Labels Four cut the frame that fit over the same die cut shape for the 'Birthday Wishes" sentiment stamped with blue and heat embossed with clear powder.


Versa Magic Night Sky ink
Versa Mark
Clear embossing powder
Spellbinders Labels four
Paper piercer
Rounded corner punch
Blue & Green cardstock
Striped Velum

Mariana Grigsby created an all red card, that I just loved. So this next one is a variation of her creation.( I like her all red card better)
Heat embossed ink resist technique is used in the creation of this card.


Versa Magic Jumbo Java ink
Versa Mark
White embossing pwder
Ink blending foam
Paper piercer
Spellbinders Labels One & Scalloped Circles
Cream & Bronze cardstock
Brown ribbon

So these are the cards I created to to teach different techniques while creating cards for 'The Sophisticated Man".