I'm ending the year with a tutorial post on the Sizzix blog!  Happy New Year Everyone!

Thank you everyone for your visits and comments, all the best for 2017.



Copper Patina Enchanted Dove Card

Hello there! Christmas is almost here but if you're like me and still have a few cards to make, here's some card inspiration.

My patterned papers that I used for my card are from BoBunny's "Tis the Season" collection.

For my card, I have used Sizzix's Tim Holtz Holiday Mini Greens, Vintage Tidings,  Mini Paper Snowflakes, Enchanted Doves and Stephanie Barnard's Dotted Circles.

A Dashing Deer Christmas Card

Hi everyone!  I know it's been quiet here on my blog, but I've still been busy crafting away.  
I have a Christmas card here on the blog today featuring Sizzix's Tim Holtz Dashing Deer Bigz die.

This deer goes so well with all the Christmas plaids out there.

I die cut the dashing deer from chipboard.  With bigz dies, you just need to sandwich your die  and material between two cutting pads.

After I die-cut the deer, I embossed the bottom half with Sizzix's Holly Ribbon Texture Fade.

The embossed die-cut was then painted with black gesso.

To highlight the embossed areas, I dry brushed (wiping most of the paint off your brush before applying lightly) with Fired Brick and Tarnished Brass Distress Paint.

The dry brushing gives the deer an aged look.

To finish off the deer, I applied a coat of Ranger's Crackle Accents.  Once this had dried, I applied Black Soot Distress Paint and wiped it off, leaving it just in the cracks.

Apply a touch of Tim Holtz Clear Rock Candy dry glitter with glossy accents, on the edges of the antlers and body to give him a festive look.  Snip off a piece of pine trim, with a small Tim Holtz pinecone charm and a ribbon bow complete my deer.

The plaid oval behind my deer was created with Sizzix's Tim Holtz Stitched Oval Thinlits set, black glitter paper, and plaid patterned paper from Tim Holtz Tidings Paper Stash.  I die-cut the two ovals, then on the plaid one, pulled off the stitched edge.  The black oval was adhered to my matted card (Tim Holtz paper), then the plaid oval was pop-dotted on top.  

I added in a knit looking strip die-cut from the Sizzix Tim Holtz Holiday Knit Thinlits set.  There's five different pieces, which can be used alone or all together.  When I combine  two different colours together, I place scotch tape on the back of the die-cut before removing from the die.  Usually it's the one with all the little pieces.  When they are left on the tape after carefully removing the paper from the die, they stay in place and are so easy to place behind the other die-cut.  I even leave the tape on the back to keep them in place.

Before adhering the deer, I added in some Tim Holtz Tidings Ephemera, my holiday knit piece, and some greens punched out from the Sizzix Tim Holtz Juniper Punch and cardstock.  Finish off with a Christmas Sentiment from Tim Holtz Metallic Holiday Talk and Metallic Label Sticker.

Thanks for stopping by!



Sizzix Gatefold Card Tutorial

Hi everyone!  I have a card tutorial on the Sizzix blog today!

We are featuring the new gatefold card dies designed by Lori Whitlock. Hope you join me there!



Day of the Dead Card

Hello there!  I have another Halloween card today for you.  Although if you look out my window today, it looks more like Christmas.  It started snowing Friday night and it has not stopped....not happy.  As I look at my daughter's Instagram photos of her laying on a beach in Miami, I'm really wondering, what am I doing here?  Hopefully it disappears soon, but something tells me it might be here to stay.  Ugh! Anyways, back to Halloween.

Love the new Day of the Dead stamps by Tim Holtz (CMS277) and I thought the smaller image would fit perfect in the new Sizzix Tim Holtz Ornate Frame.

The Ornate Frame #2 Bigz die is a steel-rule die, which means beside being thicker, it not only cuts out cardstock, but cuts out thicker materials.  Chipboard, fabric, foam, magnet sheets, leather, foil,  or plastic sheets.  I chose chipboard for my frame, as I wanted to cover it with different mediums.  All you need are your two cutting pads and your material on top of the die in-between those.

After die-cutting my frame, I covered it with Tim Holtz Distress Grit-Paste.  Let this dry.

Once your Grit-Paste has dried, paint it with your chosen colours.  I used Distress Wilted Violet and a touch of Black Soot paint to darken some areas.  After my painted frame was dry, I sprayed some of Dylusions Crushed Grape and Distress Antiqued Bronze Mica sprays.  

These Mica Sprays when dry, give a beautiful glimmer of mica to your projects.  I say, when dry, as the mica doesn't show up as much until your item that has been sprayed, has dried.  Each designer from Ranger Ink has their own set of three mica sprays.  They are all yummy!

I stamped my image on a piece of lightly patterned vintage looking paper will archival ink.  I then coloured in my image with Zig Clean Colour Markers.  I think, because this stamp is very detailed, I wouldn't be as heavy on the stamping.  I feel I lost some of the fine details with too much ink.  Trim the stamped paper and adhere to the back of your frame. 

For my black mat that's behind the frame, I took black cardstock (we have this beautiful matte finish black at the store) and embossed it with Sizzix's Tim Holtz Damask Texture Fades Folder.  To finish off the edges, I used Prima's Dresden Trim, which is embossed paper, cut, and covered in a layer of metallic foil.  This foil can be coloured, which I did with Black Soot paint and Prima Art Alchemy Dark Velvet Metallique paint.  I just used my fingertip and applied the paint on the embossed raised areas. I cut the strips to fit my mat and then they were adhered around the edges.

For my little Oct. 31 label, I die-cut the word from Sizzix's Tim Holtz Halloween Thin Words Thinlits set from red matte metallic cardstock, then matted on black.  My Sizzix Sandwich for die-cutting in my Big Shot was:  Magnetic Platform, Standard Cutting Pad, paper, Thinlits die (cutting side facing down) Standard Cutting Pad. The ends of my labels were hand-cut.

I finished off the inside with a mat Damask die-cut using Sizzix's Tim Holtz Mixed Media Halloween Thinlits die.  The red metallic paper was adhered behind it.  Happy Halloween was die-cut from the Tim Holtz Thin Halloween Words set also.  These letters are really tiny and thin, so adhering to your page is a little tricky to get them straight.  I apply piece of an adhesive sheet to the back of my paper before die-cutting.  Once die-cut, remove the negative piece of paper, the letters usually stay inside.  Then you can place the metal die on your paper and push through the little holes to eject your letters.

To finish off my card, I adhered a bow and skeleton charm (Tim Holtz) to the bottom corner.  The polka dot cardstock I used is from Echo Park.

Thanks so much for visiting!



A Steampunk Pumpkin Card

Hello there! Steampunk and Halloween seem to go so good together, so I couldn't resist this Steampunk Pumpkin stamp by Stampendous. I created this fun Halloween card.

I added in some gears die-cut from Sizzix's Tim Holtz Gearhead Thinlits set to give my image more dimension.

There are 22 gears in this set, one of them a corner gear collage, which I used on the inside of my card.

I stamped my steampunk pumpkin on a piece of patterned paper that had a very faint pattern with Archival Black Soot Distress Ink. This was my card front, which I matted with orange and deep purple cardstock. I stamped an additional image on the same type of paper, which was coloured with markers and a water pen.  This was cut out after I coloured it, and then I slightly shaped the edges to give it more shape.  This cut out was adhered on top of the stamped card with adhesive foam dots.

I used a thin chipboard, or you could use cardstock to die-cut my gears.  Before cutting them out, I applied a piece of Tim Holtz Sparkling adhesive backed paper to the top of my chipboard (TH93314).  This paper looks like glitter, but it is a smooth, very thin, sparkly sheet, kind of like a vinyl sticker.  It can be die-cut, used in a punch or torn. I also die-cut a larger gear using Sizzix's Tim Holtz Gadget Gears#2 Bigz die.

Once I had all my gears die-cut, I layered them with different combinations. The little brads are from Tim Holtz (93268) Hex Fasteners.  These were adhered over the stamped gears images. 

The corner gear die-cut was cut out of my patterned paper, and the negative part was used on the inside of my card.  I die-cut the same corner with the sparkly paper and placed in the matching space.  This was adhered on top of a purple cardstock mat, then my card inside.

To finish off my card front I die-cut the words 'Happy Halloween' from Sizzix's Tim Holtz Halloween Thin Words Thinlits set.  For Halloween, I used the negative piece cut from black cardstock, backed with the sparkly paper.  The word, happy was the letters die-cut from black cardstock.  I love the font on these dies, I know the negative is the main part used, but I do love how thin the actual letters are.  The patterned paper I stamped on is "Salvage District" from Prima Marketing and the other patterned paper(the darker pattern) is "Wonderfully Wicked" from BoBunny. 

Thanks for stopping by!



These DIY Cards with Sizzix are Snow Much Fun!

Just a little break from Halloween today, I have a tutorial on the Sizzix blog

Hope you visit me there!



HAPPY HAUNTINGS with DIY Sizzix Village Manor

Hello there!  Ready for another house tutorial? 

 I think I am developing a slight addiction to these Sizzix Village Houses.  Maybe it's a thing from my childhood, memories, whatever you would like to call it... as kids we used spend hours creating wonderful Barbie houses and furniture (at least we thought they were wonderful) out of cardboard, paper, anything we could find. Store bought, not even an option, we just created our own and loved every minute of it. These remind me of those days, so I guess that's why I could spend hours creating these! I've been including boxes to set my houses on; it gives another purpose or at least being a bit more practical when wanting to create yet another one (like I need a reason, lol!).  I even decided to make two boxes this time!  I have a quite a few Halloween decorations, so I can store a few things in these.  My original idea was to have a few of the Village Brownstones on the edge of the bigger box, but I'm not sure if they will fit, and this one took me a lot longer to finish than I thought. Too many other things going on in my life right now, so who knows, I might add on later.  
Anyways, grab a coffee, sit  for a spell, this post is a little long!  

I die-cut my Sizzix Village Dwelling house pieces from thin chipboard (Urban Scrapbook sells this nice thin dense chipboard, it even works with thin dies and is a little more stable than cardstock).  I know some people are confused about what each die set actually cuts out so hopefully I can explain for you.  There are two main house dies; The Village Dwelling Die which is the shorter and wider house and the Village Brownstone die which is the taller, skinner house.  You can be creative and create your own variations with just one of these houses, but well... I probably don't need to say anything else, you know (addicting, easier, a reason to shop etc).  The other dies, such as the Village Bell Tower (Church), are the add-on pieces to transform your basic house into a different kind of dwelling.  

The add-on die used for my Sizzix Village Dwelling to transform it into a Haunted Manor is the Sizzix Village Manor L die.  These are both Bigz dies, which mean they are capable of cutting out thicker material such as chipboard, plastic, anything that can be cut out with scissors.  I'm not going into great detail how to build my house as there are  instructions on the back of each enclosed die photo to use when building your house and also downloadable PDF instructions for these dies on the Sizzix Site.  Just look up your die on the Sizzix website, and there's a link on the left side of the die photo.  I usually print off one for my dies that are a little more involved when building, and keep them in a file.

How did I get that texture on my house?  I used this new Distress Grit-Paste from Tim Holtz.  Love this stuff, I want to cover everything with it!  

I covered a thin coat of Grit Paste on all my house and parts with a palette knife and let air dry.  I just covered the roof of my manor addition, as the rest will be shingled.

After everything was dry, I started painting with Distress paint. I don't recommend trying to colour the grit paste before applying.  It changes the consistency and the colour isn't as intense.  I started off with my lighter colours, Fired Brick and Fossilized Amber, and then darkened the pieces with Ground Expresso and Black Soot.  You are just going to paint the layers in random areas, letting the other colours show through.  If you want more of a certain colour to show, just go back and apply it sparingly.

For my shingles, I used Sizzix's Village Rooftops Bigz die. There are three different kinds of shingles on the one die.  You will need to cut out quite a few, to cover the house roof and the manor addition roof.  I used Tim Holtz Woodgrain Cardstock for my shingles, and in my opinion, this is the best woodgrain paper ever!  My only complaint, (Tim are you listening?) I want bigger sheets! There's so many things I would like to use it on, but 4 1/4 by 5 1/2, just a little too small.  Just sayin..... lol.  Anyways, I sprayed my sheet with Distress Spray in Hickory Smoke and a little bit of Black Soot. If it's too dark, just dab a bit off when still wet.  After it's dry, take your Black Soot Distress Ink pad, and run it across your paper.  It adheres only to the raised woodgrain areas, looks so cool.  After die-cutting my shingles out, I lightly sanded the edges and applied a lighter shade of Distress paint (Hickory Smoke) to highlight those edges.  Start from the bottom and adhere each row (there are also directions for applying these on the die package). 

For the Manor add on roof, you can see there's a round window on each end.  I die-cut two ends of that piece in a thin black paper, removed the tabs, and applied my shingles to that paper.  I then ran it through my Big Shot again, matching it to the shape on the die, so the window would be cut through the shingles.  You can always handcut it out after, but I liked the nice clean edge. That piece is then adhered to the roof end.

Adhere your roof  to your house.  The end with the front cutout goes on the porch front.  I used left over woodgrain pieces for my doors and adhered this before attaching to my house.  The little knobs are Tim Holtz Hex Fasteners (TH93268).  There are two different sizes of these brads in the package and they come in three different finishes.  I was going to adhere my roof to the manor add-on, but decided to add on the top railing and windows first.  
At this point, when creating my house, I wasn't going to use the bottom square that comes with the Dwelling, but decided later to use it. This was also covered in Grit Paste and painted. 
If you are going to use a tea light in your dwelling, this next step is best done now and not at the very end like I did. Apparently, I always like to make things difficult for myself.

From now on, I'm just going to die-cut a hole in the bottom of this house piece, whether I use a tea light or not.  No one sees it, and it gives you the option.  This way, you just set the light in the hole and the inside of your house is lit up.  I also cut a hole inside the box lid, the light fit snug without gluing it in and I could shut it on or off, or remove it.  I used a circle die, that turned out the exact size, I'm sure you all have a circle punch or die!  Also, I realized the the Manor add-on won't light up because it is separate from the house (roof in-between) so now is the time to cut a small hole in the middle of your roof where it is covered up, that is, if you want that part to light up. I just used a craft knife to cut a small hole. Good thing I make these mistakes so you don't have to!

The Village Manor also comes with window and fence pieces which I die-cut out of black cardstock(a heavier weight).  I added on a bit of green and grey paint and for the round windows, red and orange. I like to cover the inside of the windows with clear acrylic if I'm lighting up my house.  I used Ranger's Alcohol Ink (Black Soot and Lakemist) to grunge up the "glass".  Let's grunge it up even more, by cutting parts out so it looks like the glass is broken!   Adhere these to the inside of the windows. The little railing around the top of the roof are from fence pieces that are cut apart and just the top railing was used. Now Adhere your roof to the add-on and then your house.  I always use my hot glue gun for adhering these main parts together, they aren't going to fall apart then.  If you apply the glue to the inside, right on the edge, it usually catches, or make little tabs like I did on a previous house tutorial.

For my two chimneys, I die-cut out the Village Dwelling ones out of thin chipboard (short fat ones), embossed with my Tim Holtz Bubbles Texture Fade (an old one 657846) and painted these with Distress Paint.  The Manor chimneys were die-cut from Tim Holtz Metallic Core-dinations Cardstock and distressed. 

Adhere these chimneys to both sides of your house roof.  Adhere your house to the base and your Haunted Manor is complete!    Are you still with me?  I told you this was long!  I tend to take a lot of photos throughout. It could be been longer, but lucky for you a lot of them were unusable, as I didn't notice the battery on my camera was going dead and the photos got blurrier and blurrier.  

This next part is all about the boxes.

These are just paper mache boxes from a craft store.  This was a 3pce set.  I painted them with black gesso, inside and out.

Using a Tim Holtz Layering Stencil (Twisted #65), I applied it with black embossing paste all around my box. I applied it below where the lid would come to when on the box.

The lid was covered patterned paper.  The stripe is from Tim Holtz and the top is from Blue Fern. The edges are distressed with a sanding block and inked.  Once the paste was all dry, I applied different colours of Distress paint to the raised parts in reds, oranges and yellows, then applied Black Soot paint over everything.  While still wet, I wiped off parts so the colours showed through a bit. Sorry blurry photo for that one, but there is one where you can see it further down.

To decorate the top box lid, I die-cut a cardstock strip of the Sizzix Tim Holtz Cobblestones Decorative Strip die.  This was used as a stencil.  I removed most of the cobblestones, but left the outsides all uneven.  I just ran this through my machine once, so that they all didn't fall out as easy.

Using Grit-Paste again with my stencil, I applied a path to the top of my box which was covered with Tim Holtz paper. After this had dried, I painted with Distress Paint (Hickory Smoke, a bit of Espresso).

Your house can be adhered to the top at this point.  If you have holes in the house base and box, make sure you match them up!  I added in a branch from my maple tree, moss, a Tim Holtz pumpkin (TH93312), Tim Holtz Bones (TH93304) and a few little tiny pumpkins (I've had these forever, they are from a scented fall home decor package that you put in vases or bowls).

My other embellishments for the edges of the boxes are die-cut from these Sizzix dies.  The bats are  from Tim Holtz Mixed Media Halloween Thinlits die.  This was die-cut onto cardstock a few times(or you could use thin acrylic so it could be re-used) and used as a stencil.  I stencilled all around the smaller box and painted just like the Twisted stencil on the larger box.  I covered some parts of the stencil with masking tape so I had a few bats here and there, not as solid as other areas. Don't throw out the little bats that were cut out, they are great embellishments.  These are what I used on my house and tree. To make it look like they are flying, I glued two together, with a piece of thin wire in-between (about 1" and glue one end of the wire in the bats).

The gravestones are Sizzix's On the Edge Tim Holtz Graveyard Die that has been die-cut with Tim Holtz Substrate sheets (TH93291).  I like to use these when I want something a little tougher that can withstand more.  This paper is slightly textured, can be sewn, die-cut, punched, painted, or stained.  I figured since they were going on the outside of my box which would be opened, paper would tear or wear out faster.  The gate is Sizzix's Tim Holtz Gothic Gate  Thinlits die and is die-cut from thin chipboard.  It was then sprayed with Black Soot Distress Spray, then a little bit of Tim Holtz Mica Spray in Antiqued Bronze, Tarnished Brass, and finally a dab of Hickory Smoke Distress Paint.  These were adhered to the bottom edge of the smaller box.  

The Zombie who's making his way home, is Sizzix's Tim Holtz Lost Zombie Bigz die.  I die-cut this twice, both out of thick black chipboard.  I glued the two together, then coloured lightly with Tim Holtz Distress Crayons.  He was adhered with pop dots, just up to the edge where the box top comes, as he is higher and I wanted to be able to open the box. This way he's not touching the lid and because I have made him thicker, a little sturdier. You can see the finished colouring on my twisted branches in this photo too.

Can you believe it, I think I'm finished!  If I've left anything out, (really?) so sorry!

Thanks so much for dropping by,  hope I have inspired you in making your own Haunted Village!


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