Thursday, August 18, 2016

The Wacky Watercooler Blog Hop Steps It Up for August

I don't know about you but I simply can't believe how quickly this summer is zooming by.  Not only is it rolling by quickly, but its time for the Wacky Watercooler Blog Hop once again.   Didn't we just celebrate?

I want  to welcome the awesome Fiona Whitehead to our group of Wacky Watercooler designers. Fiona's participated in many of our challenges and is a very talented stamper whom I know you're going to enjoy!  

The Wacky Watercooler Blog Hops has been pretty consistent over the years with design artists generally featuring three different projects for the hop. but we've thrown that concept out the window for today.  Yes, that's right, our August hop has a twist that we hope you'll enjoy!  Each design artist is starting out with an ordinary "I'm in a hurry I need to get this done" type of card".  Their second project will take that very same card and "step it up" a notch, and then our final projects will be a totally stepped up version that shows how fancy we really can get with this card. Don't be fooled, this is not as easy as it sounds!

Before we begin, our hops work on a circle basis so if you've started with me, just keep following the links until you wind up back here again.  If you've arrived from Heidi Weaver's blog I'm sure you're still reeling from her amazing projects.  At the end of my post just click on the Watercooler that says "next" and you'll go to Marsha Reed's amazing Coffeepot Stamping Cafe, where she has some fabulous projects.  What fun!

Project One: 
Okay, so this is the starting point of my "plain jane", "simple", "I'm in a hurry" type of card.  The focal point, the hydrangea, comes from a set I hadn't had an opportunity to use yet called Thoughtful Branches and it's matching Beautiful Branches Framelits.  This bundle is available only during the month of August or as long as supplies last.  So, what better time than this hop to show case it, and boy am I glad I did, not only for the end results but because it was an exceptionally fun bundle to use. 

Supplies:  (Note:  This supply list is for the three projects)
Stamp Sets:  Gorgeous Grunge, Thoughtful Branches (Limited Edition Only Available in August 2016),and Butterfly Basics. 
Ink:  Elegant Eggplant, Perfect Plum, Rich Razzleberry) So Saffron, Sweet Sugarplum, Wisteria Wonder
Card Stock:  Sahara Sand, Rich Razzleberry, Pear Pizazz, Sweet Sugarplum, Whisper White.
Accessories:  Big Shot, Trimmer, Beautiful Branches Framelits (Limited Edition Only Available through August 2016 or while supplies last), Itty Bitty Accents Flower Image Punch(R), Small Butterfly Punch, Tom Bow Glue, Dimensionals, Basic Rhinestones, Fluttering Embossing Folder 

How It's Made:  
1.  I cut an 8 1/2" x 5 1/2" piece of Sahara Sand card stock for the base and scored it at 4 1/4". 
2.  I looked very carefully at the fading hydrangeas in my garden to get the colour perspective and then created a palette on a piece of Whisper White card stock, using the Gorgeous Grunge splatter and spot stamps and the hydrangea image from the Thoughtful Branches set.  The colour mix was made up of:  Perfect Plum, So Saffron, Elegant Eggplant, Sweet Sugarplum and Wisteria Wonder.  

Note: I took this picture before I stamped the hydrangea image across it, so it was a lot fuller when I finished.
 3.  I cut out the hydrangea flower head with the Beautiful Branches Framelits.  It cut like butter and I must say I was so impressed, because I don't have a precision plate.

4.  I cut a second hydrangea out of Sweet Sugarplum card stock and adhered the two flower pieces together with foam tape. Glue the combined flower head in the top left hand corner using Tom Bow glue.  Tip One:  Before adding the adhesive shift the flowers just slightly so it the flower head looks fuller. Tip Two: There isn't a lot of room between the floors to fit in dimensionals so instead I cut a very small strip across the top of my adhesive foam strip and these eensy weensy pieces fit perfectly to separate the two layers and give some fullness.  

5.  Cut the stem from Pear Pizzazz card stock and adhere with Tom Bow glue.  I just did tiny little dots of glue on the back side of the leaf image and I used tweezers to lay it down on the card stock and secure.  

6.  The beautiful "Thank You" sentiment from Thoughtful Branches was stamped in Elegant Eggplant Ink just below the leaf on the left hand side of the card bottom.  

7.  The inside of the card has a 5 1/4" x 4" panel of Whisper White card stock with the simple "Your Kindness Makes a Difference" sentiment stamped in Elegant Eggplant ink.  

Project Two:
For the second project the following changes were added:
1.  I added a 5 3/8" x 4 1/8" layer of Rich Razzleberry card stock.

2.  The next layer is a 5 1/4" x 4" layer of Sahara Sand card stock.

3.  I stamped and assembled a hydrangea the same as in project one.

4.  I added a small Rich Razzleberry butterfly to the leaf.  It was punched out with the Bitty Butterfly punch. and three basic rhinestones were added to its center. 

5.  I used a retired punch called the Itty Bitty Accent punch (flower image) to punch out a number of small flower images which I shaped with a stylus ball so they had some shape. The flowers were attached with Mini Glue Dots.  I also added small basic rhinestones to their centers.

6.  The stem and sentiment placement was the same. 

7.  Nothing changed on the inside of the card.  

Project Three:

For my third project the following changes were added:

1. I added the Rich Razzleberry layer as in project two.

2. The Sahara Sand layer was embossed with the Fluttering Embossing folder.

3. I stamped the Thank you sentiment  as in projects one and two.  I then stamped the honeycomb stamp from Butterfly Basics , randomly over the Sahara Sand layer.  I used Sweet Sugarplum ink, but I stamped off before applying each image.
4.  I added the hydrangea as in Project Two but added more flowers and fluffed out the base so it was fuller. Instead of adding Basic Rhinestones I added small Basic Pearls.  I added Wink of Stella to all of the flowers.

5.  The stem placement was the same but I coloured the leaves and stem with Wink of Stella.

6.  I added two more butterflies in Rich Razzleberry and one in Sweet Sugarplum to the stem and added pearls to their centers instead of rhinestones.

7.  For the inside of the card I added a 4" x 5 1/4" layer of Rich Razzleberry card stock followed by a 3 3/4" x 5" layer of Whisper White.  The sentiment remained the same, however I randomly stamped the honeycomb image and added three butterflies.

Well that's it for my three "STEP IT UP" cards.  I hope you enjoyed this presentation, and the way I've used this stamp set to create them. I'd like to hear your comments, and which card you liked the most.

Marsha Reed
Heidi Weaver
Wacky Watercooler Blog Hop 

Happy Stamping!
Penny Tokens Stampin Spot
August Hostess Code:  EZGKEM73


Jackie said...

Penny, beautiful series of card. Changes were subtle, but so effective in terms of stepping the cards up.

Unknown said...

Wow Penny, each of your cards are so beautiful. The first card is so pretty and they get prettier and prettier. I have been putting off purchasing the Thoughtful Branches and it's matching Beautiful Branches Framelits, and I hope I can resist after seeing your creations!

Penny Hanuszak said...

Jackie thanks for checking out my Steps It Up card projects for this blog hop. I really appreciate your taking the time to comment.

Penny Hanuszak said...

Thanks Marie I'm glad you like all of the cards. I was reluctant to get that set too, however what sold me was the beautiful sentiments, which just blew me away. I know it's a limited edition, but I'll be using this for a long time to come for my personal stamping. Have a great weekend and happy stamping!

Stampin' Amigos said...

Wow, Penny--I loved the first one, so I was thoroughly delighted to follow along through your stepped up cards! Great changes and ideas; the textures of the hydrangea you've created are just beautiful! Thanks for the ideas.

Penny Hanuszak said...

Thanks Priscilla for leaving a comment. It was a little daunting to go through the steps, I think we all create cards and step them up naturally, so to have to work at it, was hard for me. But, I was happy with how these cards progressed through the steps. I'd do this challenge again! Happy Stamping.

libbystamps said...

I totally missed the blog hop or even thinking about sad. I am in love with this stepped up card design. And three times, WOW! I love your cards. Great stepped up series - I am a total fan!

Penny Hanuszak said...

Hey Libby this hop would have been right up your alley. I missed looking for your fabulous projects as they're always a highlight for me. Glad you enjoyed this one and my stepped up cards. Fun to do.

Gail said...

Oh, my goodness Penny. Where do I start? First, I love how you photographed your cards in a hydrangea bush! And the colours and layering are spectacular. Thanks also, for all the detailed instructions you provided. You knocked it out of the park with these projects!

Heidi Weaver said...

Wow, Penny---times three. When I looked at your first card I thought you were posting them backwards with the fancy, super stepped up one first, but that thought went right out the window when I saw your next cards. Card number two really stepped up the game and is lovely. And then you blew me away. I was amazed with card number three. Somehow you managed to raise that bar with some pearls, background stamping and background embossing. You went from a "wow" to a "Wow" to a "WOW!" Great work!

Fiona said...

Beautiful cards Penny - I really enjoyed playing along with the blog hop and stepping up the cards.

Penny Hanuszak said...

Thanks Heidi, Gail and Fiona for your wonderful comments. I was really worried about whether these cards would make the grade, and your reassurances have made me feel great! I love hopping with all you gals so much!

Deborah Smart said...

Three terrific cards, Penny! I'd be happy to with any one of them :) I love how you captured the colours of the hydrangea perfectly.

Marsha Reed said...

Beautiful cards, Penny. I love how you've stepped them up. The addition of the butterflies was sweet. I love butterflies. :-)

Heather Hopson said...

Penny, That's what I call stepping up for the Challenge. Wow! Each of your projects are beautiful and you have certainly made each card more dramatic. I love the colors you chose. The second and third card have that 3D look for sure. Well done!

Penny Hanuszak said...

Thanks so much Heather for your lovely comment on my cards. I'm glad you liked them and were able to pop in and check out the hop. These are fun cards to make. So happy you were able to get this set too!

Penny Hanuszak said...

Thanks Marsha. I'm glad you liked them. I love butterflies too so it seemed the perfect addition.

Back Porch Stamper said...

Beautiful card. Love your unusual technique!

Penny Hanuszak said...

Thanks Diane for stopping by to visit and leave a comment. I'm not sure if you mean the colouring technique - laying down the colour on the whisper white card stock, before cutting out with the framelits, or the addition of 3-d flowers to the finished hydragea. Both were fun to do and add just a little more pop to the card design.

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