Saturday, October 31, 2009

I.N.S.A.N.E. (cards + NaNoWriMo)

**warning: slightly longer post than normal**

oh my goodness. it's been forever since i posted last! so so so sorry :/ it's been ridiculously busy this week--i made cards on wednesday, but didn't get to taking pictures/ posting until today. yesterday was my mom's birthday, my last swim meet coaching for the season, and this whole week was chock full of things to do (clean the house, wrap the presents, go to work, etc etc)

anyway, i decided it was about time i get on the ball, and i'm super excited to share some of these cards with you. unfortunately, some are kinda old (as in--i'm behind in posting). i'm going to be putting a "schedule" together of my weekly activities so i can organize my time better. i'm a list person--do so many more things when i go to check them off a list. speaking of why i need to make lists...

i have to tell you--i'm doing something CRAZY. like literally I.N.S.A.N.E. i am participating in NaNoWriMo. it's crazy. here's a little info about it.

National Novel Writing Month is a fun, seat-of-your-pants approach to novel writing. Participants begin writing November 1. The goal is to write a 175-page (50,000-word) novel by midnight, November 30.

Valuing enthusiasm and perseverance over painstaking craft, NaNoWriMo is a novel-writing program for everyone who has thought fleetingly about writing a novel but has been scared away by the time and effort involved.

Because of the limited writing window, the ONLY thing that matters in NaNoWriMo is output. It's all about quantity, not quality. The kamikaze approach forces you to lower your expectations, take risks, and write on the fly.

Make no mistake: You will be writing a lot of crap. And that's a good thing. By forcing yourself to write so intensely, you are giving yourself permission to make mistakes. To forgo the endless tweaking and editing and just create. To build without tearing down.

As you spend November writing, you can draw comfort from the fact that, all around the world, other National Novel Writing Month participants are going through the same joys and sorrows of producing the Great Frantic Novel. Wrimos meet throughout the month to offer encouragement, commiseration, and—when the thing is done—the kind of raucous celebrations that tend to frighten animals and small children.

okay, so you realize i'm crazy, right? 50,000 words?! and i teach! and i craft?! o.m.goodness. i can't believe it. i am LITERALLY insane. and am in need of support. so please! encouragement would be awesome. and maybe i'll be brave enough to share some of what i write.

you can follow me on twitter as ginnygurl if you're interested in seeing what i'm stressing about next :D / :S should be interesting no matter what.

okay, and on to the cards... the first one (at the top) was made using two stamps and lots of punches/ paper. i used the DoodleFactory gingerbread man stamp. there are actually two sides to the stamp--one where the little guy is happy, the other where he's sad... so cute. i used the DeNami Design "Merry Christmas" sentiment... i just love how swirly the script is--perfect for all sorts of things.

okay, and here we go with a "bird cage card." the transparency is from Hambly, and then i used a new technique *yay* of glitter tape along with some red DeNami glitter. hmmm, and that ribbon, pom pom trim are fab too, eh? i like the fall colors here.

and that cute fall leaf brad? YEAH! i love it. i used it on my mom's bday card that i'll share later. oh! and last year when i went to CK Seattle i got some of these "calendar pockets"? that i have never used... but seeing as Christmas is coming up, i thought they would be a perfect countdown part for cards... and for birthdays... and anything, really.

so so so in love with satin ribbon right now. and i love the look of layered flowers, don't you? i used MME glitter paper for the card--anything with a vintage feel has been catching my attention lately... hmm, wonder why?

okay, this next card has a similar color scheme cause i couldn't bear to NOT use it again... i borrowed a flower idea i saw on a blog the other day. now i can't remember where i saw it, but it was where you cut a square piece of paper and folded it and eventually rounded some corners, and VOILA! a flower shape. yeah, i didn't do it exactly like it was explained, but the brown part of the flower was a perfect backdrop to make the embellie stand out, don't ya think?

that "always adorable" chippie piece is from K&Co. how do they always have the CUTEST products? i could spend the majority of my $$ getting stuff they release... *sigh*

okay, and lastly, here's a SUPER fun card i made at the stamp party last weekend... the group i went with turned out being bigger than i thought--so lots of fun was had! i seriously could NOT resist these adorable snowballs... they're like bling, but for Christmas! how cute are they with this snowman... looks like he's about to throw them at someone, huh? hehe.

all the stamps i used were from the Impress store. the way it works for the stamp night is you pay $20 for pizza, drinks (yay for martinis this time around) and unlimited use of stamps and ink pads. you also get entered for door prizes and get 10% off all purchases :D so yeah, i had a lot of fun, and it was so great to relax and create with my girl friends.

well, hope you enjoy, and look back soon... i have a blog-o-versary coming up :D

oh, i have a question. what do you think of my new blog header? the title, GinnyLou Studio, is actually the name of my Etsy shop that is somewhat neglected as of late. i like the colors, but would love your input as well... so be honest!

whew, so thanks for reading to the end! take care, and don't forget to comment--i love seeing what you have to say! :)

making memories anyone?

oh my goodness!

my friend Paulina is hosting an amazing BLOG CANDY giveaway! it's super simple to enter, so head on over HERE to post your comment.

check out these goodies!

seriously, i'm drooling over here :D

i'll be back soon with a LOAD of cards to share...

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Amy Butler is my hero.

yay! yummy snowflakes, rhinestones, pearls, and ribbon...

okay, remember back to THIS post about my "non-traditional" Christmas cards? i'm posting the other cards i made with the wonderful Amy Butler paper... i think the card below is the closest out of all of them to a real Christmas color scheme, but paper crafting is all about trying something new and different, right?

i really love the satin ribbon... ahh, such great bows! :D

well, today is busy busy busy for me... i'm coaching a swim meet today starting at 3pm, then going to a stamp night (i miss the first part, but get there later :D), then spending the night with a friend before going to church the next morning. whew, do i have a lot to pack for!

oh, and i also got some coupons for frames that are SUPER cheap, just TODAY, and i'm going to be using frames for Christmas gifts this year... so i may have to fit in some shopping, too... hehe. wow.

anyway, thanks for looking, and let me know what you're thinking of this round of cards :D

Friday, October 23, 2009

sei sweetness

ok, quick post. here's a new card that works for the Moxie Fab World challenge--use ruffles on your card. i re-discovered this FABULOUS ribbon in my drawers that i got ages ago but never used 'cuz i liked it so much and 'cuz i'm a hoarder. it's velvet, wavy, AND ruched/ ruffled. perfect, no?!
i used some excellent SEI patterned paper here from the "poppy" line, and i just love the mettalic gleam to the leaves on the flowers, agreed? oh, and the buttons from my stash are threaded with beads and wire before adhering.

this card could work for a get well or sympathy note--nothing too flashy or garish, right??

oh, in other news, tomorrow night is the night i go to Impress for stamping with my friends--super excited to see all of them and break out some awesomeness. and let's not forget how nice it will be to talk about stamping with people who understand the love/ creativity. seriously, only ONE of my coworkers (all teachers) scrapbooks. i mean, seriously? she doesn't even make cards anymore. so anyway, going to this will be a LOT of fun.

thanks for stopping by, hope you have a great weekend :D

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Moxie Fab World Challenge: Ruffles!

Moxie Fab World is hosting a new challenge: use ruffles of some sort on your card...

i totally went gingham Christmas on this one. used some October Afternoon paper, flower gems, Martha Stewart snowflakes again, my DeNami glitter, and a Paper Co. stamp. plus, you see that vintage button? it's amazing. actually much redder IRL.
so for this challenge, i saw the sample pictures Cath put up on the blog, and then i went ahead and pulled out some fabulous ribbon i bought in a fiber pack at Impress Rubber Stamps in Tukwila. i'm in love with this ribbon.

IRL you can see how the reds in the paper, ink, patterned paper, ribbons, and buttons all go together. here, in my mushie picture, it's not so clear. my apologies. BUT! speaking of Impress Rubber Stamps, i'm going to attend a stamp night THIS saturday! w00t w00t! i am so excited. last time i went with friends and we had a ball--pizza, stamps, ink, and 10% off all purchases... can you say amazing?! oh, and that stitched stamp is from Impress & the last time i was there... hehe!

oh>> in other good shopping news, i'm going to be at the CK Convention in Bellevue, WA with fellow blogger and amazing card-maker, AMY :D can't wait to meet up and spend some $$ (well, maybe just the getting product, not the spending $$ part ;) hehe) so i'm getting busier by the moment, but i think you'd all agree that it's a GOOD busy, especially when it involves crafting! am i right?

anyway, thanks for looking, and don't forget to enter yourself into the challenge by Oct. 26th!


(BTW, this is post #150! who woulda' thought?!)

non-traditional Christmas

hmmmmm, yummy! have i mentioned i love satin ribbon before? it's just perfect. like, everything about it is perfect. it's bow-ability *yes, just made that word up* and it's elegance.

these cards basically remind me of my friend Paulina--very girly and sweet.

doesn't it look scrumptious on this non-traditional Christmas card? i love that pink, and it matches the Amy Butler paper so fabulously :D

loving the Martha Stewart snowflake punch. i bought it along with the other snowflake punch (you'll see it later) in the off-season Wal-Mart clearance isle for $4 (or was it $2?) either way... such a great deal! and the pearls and rhinestones are a fav too. definitely addicted--you'll be seeing LOTS of those coming up :D

here's another one--same layout, different papers/ ribbon. can you tell i'm gearing up for Christmas? this year i've been tossing around gift ideas, and i've come to the conclusion that almost everyone on my list will be getting a handmade gift--whether it's cards ('cuz Lord knows i have a HUGE stash to de-hoard), or framed paper art, or some type of cookies in a cute tin. we'll see... but i'm definitely planning.

do you have any lovely gift ideas that never fail to please? i'd love to hear about them. (oh, and i'd also love to know what you think about these cards :D) i'll be posting some other sweet cards later too... this layout was so simple and easy that i couldn't resist just using these papers 1x. plus, they were double sided, so i had to show you both options (: hehehe.

anyway, thanks for looking, and i hope you enjoy the rest of your weekend!

blog candy winner!

hi all! thanks to all of you who participated in my first blog candy giveaway... it was so much fun! i got to read your comments and get to know you a little more--i loved seeing what fall activities you really enjoyed... most of them match up with mine :D

anyway, on to the winner!

i used to generate a winner (super easy :D) and comment #16 won!

Amy from Scrapping Mommy shared her favorite fall activities and said,

"Hi Ginny!! What awesome blog candy!! I have spread the love by posting about your blog candy on my blog's sidebar. ;) My favorite thing about fall is the cooler weather, I get to wear sweaters, the awesome fall harvest and yummy soups that I get to make with it, and the chance to get to do more baking."

congratulations again Amy! please contact me at larsenvt (AT) gmail (DOT) com so i can get your goodies out to you :D

and for those of you that want another chance to win, i'll be posting some more candy soon (i've got a blog-o-versary coming up soon :D) so check back later...

hugs to all, and thanks again!

Saturday, October 17, 2009

it's as easy as taking candy from a...

***NOTE: contest is now closed. Thanks to all who participated!***

oh wait, it really IS that easy!

woohoo! finally time for some long-awaited blog candy here! i've been remiss in not posting this sooner, but ...well, you don't want to hear excuses, you just want to know what you could win! well, luckily, i took some pictures and put some descriptions down, so get a glimpse at the super sweet stuff you'll be entered to win :D

(NOTE: this post will stay at the top of the page until the contest is over. please scroll down to see current postings. thanks!)

S.E.I. Lovebirds line “Key to My Heart” paper
Making Memories 5th Avenue line “Sophia GeoFloral” paper
Cosmo Cricket Hello Sunshine line “Hula Hoop” paper
green Prima flowers (24 pieces)
Maya Road car key chipboard coaster album
Making Memories Sabrina line rub-ons
Making Memories Sabrina line border edges (24 pieces)
Making Memories 5th avenue line Sophia chipboard alpha stickers
3 spools of pink, brown, and white American Crafts ribbon
Studio G alpha stamp set
Assorted orange and red Prima flowers
Family stamp by Studio G
Sassafras felties: “snack attack”
Sassafras felties: “perchers”
2 yds white lace
Assorted buttons (DeNami Design & vintage) –red, white, and green
2 ¼ yds of red & white 2” wired polka dot grosgrain ribbon
2 ¼ yds of light blue w/ white stitching 2” wired ribbon
2 ¼ yds of pink satin 2” wired ribbon

so all in all, there's some pretty yummy stuff. hope you enjoy! now, on to the details and what to do...
  1. leave a comment ON THIS POST answering the question: "What is your favorite FALL activity, and why?"
  2. leave a way for me to contact you. (ie: blog or email address)
if you become a (public) follower, or already one, you get to leave an additional comment! just let me know you became/ are a follower!

you have until Saturday, October 17th, 9 PM PST to enter. i will post a randomly selected winner on Sunday, Octover 18th.

if you feel like passing on the love by mentioning this candy to your friends, go ahead!

have fun, and good luck :D

Friday, October 16, 2009

card patterns sketch #36

hey! i got to participate in another blog challenge. this time it's from Card Patterns, and i got to try a funky sketch that i wouldn'tve thought of if i hadn't happened to check it out this week.

for this card i used some Bazzill, owl ribbon, and most of the patterned paper is from DCWV {Indian Summer}. hmm, i even busted out my Cricut for the bookplate cut-out. seems i've been neglecting that lil' baby lately :D

i've been super busy this week--getting swim meets together, going to teacher training, and just being all around tired out. i don't think i got to bed earlier than 11:30pm ANY night this week except for last night. and THEN, i didn't even remember to set my alarm... so thank goodness for family members who "have my back." sheesh--i would've died if i was late to school.

anyway, i'm going to be back for some more posting... i think it'll be Christmas themed. i seriously can't wait. i've been listening to snippets of Josh Groban's "Noel" CD lately--ahh, definitely getting me ready for Christmas :D

thanks for looking, and enjoy your weekend!

oh, P.S.! check out my BLOG CANDY... one more day only to comment!

Monday, October 12, 2009

Kazan's Sketch #37

so here i am with Kazan's Sketch #37 from 2sketches4you.

i decided to go with a Christmas card because the sketch wasn't quite reminding me of anything other than a wreath! my friend Paulina also made a wreath card for this sketch.

well, i hate to leave this so short, but i really have to go to bed--school tomorrow means an early wake up call. don't forget to check out the blog candy i'm giving away HERE. there's only a few more days to enter, so put yourself in the drawing, and tell your friends too :D

thanks for looking, and leaving some comments--i love reading them!

Saturday, October 10, 2009

365 Cards day 219

here i've made a very "Paulina" card... pink, sweet, and pearly. i did distress some edges, but it makes it look softer :D

it's for the weaving challenge over at 365 cards day 219. i had some fun with SEI "lovebird" paper, as well as my Cricut, MM stickers, and some paper piercing and pearls. all come together to make this super sweet rendition of the challenge. i realized i hadn't done any weaving since about 1st grade... imagine that?!

i added that bird cage for a sweet touch... don't you think it looks like a pair of lovebirds? :D hope you enjoy. don't forget to enter my BLOG CANDY for an easy chance at some goodies (even SEI paper like the stuff i used here!)

thanks for looking!

365 Cards day 218

here i am posting day 218 Super Sketchy Sunday for 365 cards... i pulled out some new papers from My Minds Eye for this, as well as some lovely vintage white and red buttons.

i'm super busy today, working with cards, getting ready for another week at school, and trying to clean some too. not feeling that great, though, so i may just end up sitting around my craft desk instead of being super productive. oh well. some days just are like that.

thanks for looking, and check back for more challenge cards. also, if you haven't entered my BLOG CANDY, you should do that now--it ends next Saturday. spread the word :D

Friday, October 9, 2009

2sketches4you Laura's #36

oh my gosh! as i was making this card last night to participate in Laura's sketch #36, i said to my sister, "this is the cutest card ever!" hehe. and i really really do like it. i moved the scallops from the bottom of the sketch to right below the midline (with my lace). don't you love how you can switch one element of a sketch and still have it "work"?

see that amazing cupcake felt sticker? it's from sassafras and i'm giving two feltie sticker packages away in my BLOG CANDY--so if you think this card is cute, you should definitely enter.

the rest of the supplies all come from DCWV except the ribbon and lace--Michael's and Jo-Ann's.

that silhouette paper is actually velvety, and i love it. this card has so much texture and interest--maybe that's why it's become a quick favorite.

well, gotta get going--today i'm spending some much needed "rest/ catch up" time with a girlfriend, Paulina... we're getting massages :D then going to dinner :D and THEN going to a party. YAY! and you may be wondering why i'm blogging on a friday morning... well, i have the day off school! w00t w00t! i am so happy :D sleeping in is my favorite.

well, thanks for stopping by, and don't forget to enter in the blog giveaway HERE.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

monster cards and a little about me

hey there! so last Saturday was World Card Making Day, and as i was surfing the web for all the fun stuff going on that day, i happened upon the Caardvarks survey regarding paper crafting. i thought at first--"there's too many questions," (ha! this coming from the English teacher), but as a dutiful sister would (*cough, cough* CHOKE) i followed my sister's encouragement to fill out the Caardvarks survey anyway. now i'm glad i did, even though it took some thought and typing :D you know, good things *DO* often take some time... BUT, the cool part is that some of my responses were actually highlighted on the blog on Sunday. :D

i've included my full responses below the pictures... i hope you enjoy learning a little bit more about me and my paper crafting style!

this group of cards uses the Doodle Stack from DCWV, a lot of red, green, and kraft. also, all the stamps are PTI sentiments that i borrowed from my friend Paulina.

don't you love those little faces of horror and delight? :D they make me laugh.

i showed these to my brother Peter, and he said, "When am I going to get my birthday card? Can this be my birthday card?" i just about fell over laughing--i said, "YES! ...just let me write something on the inside." anyway, i know if it passes muster when my brothers like it :D

all the layouts are similar, with just a few parts arranged differently. i had a fun time distressing the edges with an actual distresser as opposed to my scissors... SOOO much easier :D
anyway, here are the Q/A's as promised, and if you haven't already seen my BLOG CANDY from a previous post, you need to get going! go over and enter by leaving a comment--it's that easy :D

What is your favorite part of the card making process?
I love making the card… finding the right paper, cutting out the pieces I need, and putting it all together. I also really like adding the finishing touches—the glitter at the end, or the flower embellishment.

What's on your craft table right now?
A card in process: DoodleFactory “Santa” stamped in chocolate ink on cream paper. I’m working on a combo challenge card for Christmas—it’ll count towards Dawn Mcvey’s Color Challenge as well as 2sketches4you, Kazan’s sketch.

What color combos do you most enjoy?
Ooooh, I absolutely LOVE pink and black. I wear it a lot, so that may be a reason why.

Where do you gather inspiration?
Everything. I like looking at blogs and sketches, but really, when I’m not basing a card or layout on someone else’s art, I just kinda look around and ideas start flowing. I am not currently keeping an idea book, and luckily, haven’t *had* to keep one—my ideas haven’t stopped yet :D Pretty paper doesn't hurt one bit either--having things on hand helps me get going!

How many cards do you make in an average week?
Well, because I teach full time (9th grade English), and coach girls swimming, I generally only get to create on the weekends. Maybe 3-4?

How did your passion for card making begin?
My friend Paulina kinda got me started. She invited me to a scrapbooking convention last November, and I ended up going and spending a *ton* of money. Then I had all these things I was looking to use, so I started a blog, looking at work that I admired, and then it just kind of took off from there. I have always loved Paulina’s cards, and still point to her encouragement as the reason I started blogging/ card making.

What's your favorite card theme?
I love making cards for birthdays. I tend to go “whole hog” as my sister Cecelia would say, and the last couple of “cards” I’ve made have turned into booklets :D hehe. I especially like making cards for people I know intimately—family, friends, co-workers, because it gives me pleasure knowing I’ve created something they’ll love.

What 3 pieces of advice would you give to a new card maker?
Keep trying new things. Don’t be afraid to ask questions. Update your blog/ photo gallery frequently. (Advice #4: participate in challenges and comment on other work—they’ll come back to your blog and leave you encouragement and good feedback if you ask.)

Other than card making, what other hobbies do you enjoy?
I love scrapbooking (even though it’s in the same category as card making), and watching movies. I’m something of a movie addict—I love watching movies just about all the time. I also love baking, when I get a free moment… anything with chocolate (banana nut chocolate bread, chocolate chip cookies, etc).

Do you send or hoard your cards?

Both. When I create something specific (birthday, anniversary, thank you, etc) then I send it right away. BUT, I usually don’t have a specific purpose in mind when I make all the cards I do—so I have ended up with a stash of cards that keeps piling up. I am working on de-hoarding that stash by slowly listing these cards on Etsy. We’ll see how it goes :D
thanks for stopping by, and don't forget to check out the candy HERE!

Saturday, October 3, 2009

Kazan's #36 & Dawn McVey's #17

yay, a combo card challenge!

i finally got to participate in two challenges this week, which is major for me since i've been so busy lately with school (open house on thursday) and coaching the swim team (2 meets this week--phew!)
anyway, i was able to participate in the Raspberry Suite Color Challenge #17 over at Dawn McVey's blog (use the colors aqua, red, brown, kraft, and cream) as well as Kazan's sketch #36 over at 2sketches4you. hope you check both of them out as the participants have LOVELY entries :D

here i was able to make a super sweet "ho ho ho" Christmas card with one of my favorite stamp lines--DoodleFactory stamps... isn't that Santa the cutest? :D

well, i've gotta run--i'm going to see "Whip It" with my sister tonight--should be good.

also, please enter my BLOG CANDY above for a chance at some lovely goodies.

enjoy, and thanks for looking!