Hi There!

KatyI’m Katy, the Cavalier!  As you can see from the name of this blog, I’m the one in charge and supervise my human, Kim’s, comings and goings and I am especially involved when it comes to card making.  I am her muse.

We hope to bring a smile to your face with our cards, stories and random thoughts.

Hey, I just met you.  And this is crazy. But there’s my subscribe.  So follow me, maybe?

Stampin’ Up’s Close Out Sale is Here

Stampin’ Up’s Close-Out Sale starts today! 

It’s a perfect time to get those presents and stocking-stuffers for your crafty friends…or for YOU.

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Stampin’ Up is doing some spring cleaning a little early.  Check out all the fabulous deals–select items only available while supplies last!  Not all items are on “sale”; those not on sale are not being carried over after the holiday catalog expires.

Order now and have your goodies in time for Christmas!

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Just Peeking In at Connie Can Crop

December’s challenge at Connie Can Crop is, “Baby It’s Cold Outside”  and our projects should be anything with a winter theme or includes snow.

For the challenge, I made a card using the Snow Friends Window digital image by our sponsor this month, Bugaboo Stamps

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Bugaboo’s tag line is, “Go Ahead…Make Someone Smile” and their digi stamps do just that as they are so cute and whimsical.  I will be sharing more projects with Bugaboo images throughout the month, so stay tuned.  But for now, here’s my card:

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If you’re hesitating to use digital images because you haven’t mastered coloring with water-color or alcohol markers, I want you to know I colored this entirely in Photoshop Elements, including the shading.  There are a number of  free photo editing programs you can download if you’d like to try your hand at it.  Here’s a fairly new article (June, 2016) listing the best options available to you.  The only thing I did by hand was to outline the piece with black magic marker to eliminate the white cut line that remains after printing on a piece of white card stock.  Oh, and I also  coated the snowmen with Wink of Stella.  Here’s a closer look at that:

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I could have taken it up a notch by putting Crystal Effects (retired Stampin’ Up) on the lights and carrots or black Nuvo Drops on the other noses and I still may if the mood strikes.  If you haven’t tried the Nuvo Drops yet, I just want to make you aware you can make your own enamel dots for a fraction of the price and still have lots left in the bottle.

Then I turned this into a shaker card by importing it into my Silhouette design screen and tracing it to create cut lines around the perimeter and inside the window panes.   The panel underneath was created by importing a digital patterned paper from the Cookin’ Cookies Kit from NitWit Collections.  In the center I placed a rectangle and filled it by color matching to the blue in the snowman’s hat.  I wanted it to be much lighter, so I increased its transparency.  Doing that would allow the pattern below to show through, so I placed another rectangle of white between the two…problem solved.  I imported some evergreens from My Digital Studio (sadly retired) and, voila, I have my landscape.

I lined the perimeter of the landscape rectangle with Stampin’ Up’s Foam Adhesive Strips.  I am loving these for shaker cards!  I placed white mica flakes from the Mica Flakes Trio Pack, available in Stampin’ Up’s Holiday Catalog, in the center for my shaker contents.  Before I did that, though, I ran my Embossing Buddy along the inside edges of the foam tape before removing the protective covering to keep the mica flakes from sticking to it.  This picture shows the mica flakes a bit more…it catches the light and looks pretty darned realistic.

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The greeting was placed on a banner I made to span the width of the mat.  I used the Bandit font, also color matched to the blue hat for the greeting and for the sentiment inside.

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I took the same rectangle I made for the card front and copied it to the inside of the card, making it even more transparent and placed my sentiment right on top.

Now it’s your turn to make a project to enter in the monthly challenge.  Just click on the image below for complete details…and good luck!

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Technique Tuesday-Acetate as Card Base

Over the years, I’ve seen many cards made using an acetate base.  I’ve tried making several myself and always had trouble keeping them standing.  It seems the acetate I was using wasn’t strong/thick enough to support the card stock and/or embellishments.  I figured out several workarounds, but then I discovered Hero Arts Folded Cards.  Problem solved!  They are made of a nice heavy acetate; strong enough to stand up to the weight without bending.

Card made using an acetate base

To start, I dry embossed the card front with the Cloudy Day embossing folder.  I thought it would be the perfect backdrop for the “neighborhood”.  I discovered the acetate warped slightly from the embossing, so I pressed it under some heavy weight until it flattened out again.

To create my little street scene, I started with Miss Kate Cuttables Christmas House Border.  I made some alterations to make it what you see on the card.  I added a tree which was part of the House Step Card by Lori Whitlock purchased in the Silhouette Store.   I converted all but the outlines of the houses to print only to avoid having to cut all those small pieces.  Then filled them with color or pattern.  When I had everything placed as I wanted it on the card front, I made a copy of the entire scene it in my Silhouette design screen and Welded in the Modify Window to create one solid piece as a background. 

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I print and cut the houses and three of the welded pieces; one of which I used for the sentiment, which I created using the Alex Brush font and printed in brown.

I attached the houses and tree to the card front the Ranger Multi Medium for a secure bond.  The adhesive shows right through the acetate, so that’s what my solid background was made to hide.  From the same background, I cut the panel for the sentiment and another for the back of the card.  The top of the tree was attached with dimensionals.

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This was easy to put together, but I think the acetate makes for an unexpected  surprise for the recipient.  I thought this would be a nice way to say hello to our new neighbors and their little dog…which is why I included a cute dog house. 

I had such fun with this technique, I decided to make another…with snowflakes.  I’ll share that with you in one of the holiday blog hops in which I’m participating in December…if I can wait that long!

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Thankful at Paper Crafting World

It’s time for another post for Paper Crafting World.  Today I’m using the Pumpkins Corner Vine Cut File to make a Thanksgiving or thank you card.

Card made using Paper Crafting World's Pumpkins Corner Vine cut file

I decided I would cut the pieces of the pumpkin, vine and greeting, which is Lori Whitlock cut file purchased in the Silhouette store, from patterned paper rather than card stock.  I opted to use digital patterned paper for the ability to size the pattern to the pieces.  In this case I used the Pumpkin Patch kit by NitWit Collections.

I decided to keep the card base very simple and let the combination of patterns do all the talking.  As always, I sponged the edges to give added dimension.  I can’t stress enough how much I suggest you do this on your projects, too.

A few things “extras” I did to this card include popping the turquoise panel on craft foam.  I’ve talked about using craft foam previously.  If you missed that, you can find it here.  I also brushed the pumpkin and the “thankful” with clear Wink of Stella.

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Inside, a simple sentiment.  The inside panel is accented using some of the same pieces from the card front, converted to print only.  I created the sentiment using Times New Roman and color matched it to the pumpkin.

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Go Wild at Miss Kate Cuttables

It’s a Miss Kate Cuttables kind of day!  It’s my DT day and I have something cute to share with you.  In fact, I hope you,”Go Wild” over it.  I’m un”bear”ably excited to show it to you, so let’s get to it!  But first don’t forget to get your Miss Kate’s Freebie of the Day…a new file every day!

Here’s the front of the card:

Here's a concertina card I made using several Miss Kate Cuttables files. I share the template on my blog.

But there’s more going on inside…a lot more.  So I want to share that with you before I talk about how it came together.

Here's the card, opened, so you can see all the animals lined up with a birthday wish. They're real party animals!

And here’s a little closer view of the animals, each holding a letter which combine to spell out birthday.  There are more pictures in the gallery which show close-up of this group of party animals.

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The card base was made using a Concertina fold from a tutorial I found on The Craft Spa.  I created a template for you and it’s on the Hints, Tips & Tutorials page and I have a cut file for those with a Silhouette Design Edition V3.

I used several Miss Kate’s files to make this card, Welcome to the Zoo, Zoo Fun Bundle and the Go Wild Title.  I got the cage from the first, the critters from the second and the title, of course, from the third.

I sized the animals and cage for the card, placing the animal behind the bars sent them to print and cut.  I cut just the animals’ heads again and placed them on top after rounding them a bit using a Sculpy Tool I’ve talked about several times.  This provided a bit of dimension.  I placed them on a double mat of Whisper White and Garden Green.  I added a little Sakura Clear Glaze to the eyes, noses and feet…oh and the cute teeth on the hippo.

I changed the title to print only for the last panel.  Using this title for inspiration, I created the first, “It’s Your” panel and the individual letters which were double matted on the same white and green and attached using embroidery floss under each head.

To create the base, I used Tall Tales, a retired Stampin’ Up DSP.  You’ll need one sheet of 12″ x 12″ paper.  I provided more details with the template.

For the center medallion on the front of the card, I created a 2″ circle and created the greeting using a Jungle font.  I sized, print and cut the bear (2 of them) and the leaves.  I beheaded the second bear and did the same as with the critters inside.  I saved the bear specifically to use with the greeting I created.  Here’s a closer look at that:

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I’ll share another Miss Kate’s card with you next month.  In the meantime, check out Miss Kate Cuttables and share your own Miss Kate’s projects on the Galleria.

KimVSignature

Technique Tuesday-Heat Embossed Vellum

A quick welcome to my newest e-mail follower, weezie.  Thanks so much for joining us and bringing everyone closer to the card bundle give-away!  I also want to extend a warm welcome to two new subscribers on NetWorked Blogs, Kathy and Eva and also to my blogging buddy, Lisa, following me on Bloglovin. 

Today I’m sharing the second technique I tried with vellum, Heat Embossing.  Having watched several videos on heat embossing vellum, I knew the secret to success was not to keep heat on the vellum too long and to keep it moving to avoid burning it.  Benefiting from the experience of others, I got it right the first time.  Before I continue, if you want to see the first post in this series, you can do that here and the original blog hop is here.

Just before our November Technique Blog Hop, I saw this video by Jennifer McGuire and knew I just had to try this Back Stamping technique on one of my cards.  It took me several attempts to get it right because, just like Jennifer says in the video, dye ink can be messy when applied and take a bit of time to dry.  I made two cards using this technique.

Heat Embossed Vellum...using the back stamping technique.

My first card combines stamps from Balloon Celebration by Stampin’ Up and Bring on the Cake by SugarPea (Part of the Stamp of Approval Kit).  I started with the balloon and stamped it in Emerald Envy with the back of the photopolymer stamp.  I did a bit of dabbing and rubbing to smooth out the color as it goes on splotchy.  I set it aside and allowed it to dry as my first attempt got smeared when  I was moving it around to do the other stamping…lesson learned.

After it dried, I stamped the candles (again using the back of the stamp) in assorted colors randomly and allowed it to dry as well.  Finally, I got to turn the vellum over and stamped (with the front of the stamp this time) over the colored images in VersaMark and then heat embossed with White Embossing Powder.  Then I stamped in the open spaces with the balloon string, streamers and swirls in VersaMark and embossed that as well.

As the adhesive will show through the vellum, I created a frame in Emerald Envy to place on top of the panel and applied the adhesive to the back of that.  I made it slightly smaller than the vellum panel so just a bit of it shows outside the frame.  I really love the look of stitched and otherwise decorated frame and there are so many dies on the market to accommodate.  I was pretty confident I could accomplish the same thing with my Silhouette.  It may be that my blade wasn’t sharp enough, but it didn’t produce a clean cut.

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I converted the dotted frame cut file to print only for the panel inside and borrowed the sentiment from Stampin’ Up using the Always on My Mind font in Emerald Envy.

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My second attempt was much the same except I stamped the front in StazOn rather than embossing to see if I could achieve the same effect.

Vellum with the back stamping technique.

I stamped the back of the vellum with the back of the cactus from the Fred Bear Out West stamp set by Leighton Noyles.  I used Pear Pizzazz and Old Olive.  After it dried, I stamped the front in black.  Another lesson I learned was NOT to use Memento Tuxedo Black ink on vellum…three days after stamping it still wasn’t dry.  How do I know?  I picked it up and started attaching it when I discovered black ink…everywhere.  So, after I remade the panel, I applied adhesive behind the greeting and randomly behind the images.  With a Copic black drawing pen, I placed small lines in the open spaces.

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I created the speech bubble and cut the Howdy using Alternate Gothic 2 BT as well as printing the balance of the greeting in the same font.  I attached it with dimensionals.

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I made sentiment panel using the same font and stamped the cactus inside as well.  The placement of the cactus was decided for me by a black smudge from that Memento Ink.

I wanted to try my hand at embossing and cutting out a flower to attach to the front of a card.  I have seen many cards made this way and have liked every one.  I didn’t get the opportunity, but it’s on my to-do list.

The Stampin’ Up Extravaganza started yesterday!  Be sure to check out the deeply discounted items while supplies last.  And on the last day of the sale, November 28th, there’s a flash sale.  Stay tuned for that.  Click on the image to start shopping.

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Paper Piecing from Christi

In September I participated in the Smarty Pants Blog Hop.  One of the talented ladies who participated in the hop, Christi of Scrapping for Tranquility, offered up some blog candy for those who left a comment on her blog.

And I won!

I was able to pick any paper piecing I wanted from two different sites and, being the dog lover I am, I picked a dog themed piece.  It arrived today and it is the cutest…I repeat…the CUTEST paper piecing!  I just had to pop in quickly and share a picture of it with you.  The picture just doesn’t do it justice.

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Christi makes adorable scrapbook layouts so, if you’re in the market for scrapbook pages to showcase those pictures you now have sitting in your closet collecting dust, reach out to her on her blog and see if she can set you up with something clever and creative.

Thank you, Christi.  I love this little dog…and Katy approves, too!

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Give Thanks Blog Hop

Welcome to the Give Thanks Blog Hop

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‘Thank you is the best prayer that anyone could say.  I say that one a lot.  Thank you expresses extreme gratitude, humility, understanding.
Alice Walker

As we approach the holiday season, we can all take a moment to reflect on things for which we can be thankful.  We should be grateful for the big things; but also for the little things and take the time to give thanks for all the persons and moments that make our lives so special.

And speaking of thankful, we would like to say a HUGE THANKS to our sponsor today.

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Theresa is giving away a $20 Stampin’ Up Gift Certificate to one lucky winner AND take 10% off any order placed through her (not available on website) by November 30th.  Email her at scrapsbygracie AT gmail.com with your order.

All you have to do to win this fabulous prize is comment on each of the blogs.  That’s it! It really is easy. Of course, we would love it if you became a follower too. And, if you become a follower on my blog, you will be entered in a card bundle give-away when I reach 100 e-mail followers.  Don’t worry if you subscribe via NetWorked Blogs or Bloglovin as you’ll be included in the drawing.

You should have arrived from the award-winning card-maker, Sue’s blog.  If you’re here first, you might want to start at the beginning so you don’t miss a thing.  Now to my projects:

If you’ve been following my blog, you know I’m always talking about adding detail to cards to take them up a notch. Things like sponging, dry embossing and the like.  Well, today I’m doing something a bit different in this hop than in the past by showing you only two cards, but two versions of each; a basic version and a stepped-up version.  If you like this sort of comparison, please tell me in the comments section so I know to do more of this in the future.

My first card is a card in a box made with a cut file by Lori Whitlock purchased in the Silhouette store.  I love this type of card; they sure do have a wow factor for someone who has never seen one.  In my circle of friends and family, that list is getting smaller ;-).  Here is a side by side comparison of the two.  At first glance they don’t appear much different, right?

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But let’s take a closer look:

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The picture on the top shows the plain card while the bottom image shows sponging on the base of and all pieces.  It adds depth and dimension.  I also dry embossed the patterned paper using Argyle and Oriental Weave embossing folders which adds texture.

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Here you can see the sponging on all the pieces.  I got a bit carried away with the turkey’s l’il face, I think, but…too late now.  I used the Fancy Fan embossing folder on the tail feathers and I used a crimper on the leaves.  Here’s a parting shot of the stepped-up card:

 

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Next up, another picture of both pumpkin cards made using a Jodi Warner cut file purchased in the Silhouette store.  I used all the same Tangerine Tango and Peach Parfait card stock and Sunlit Summer digital patterned papers by Gina K Designs and All Our Yesterdays by Eva Kipler for the leaves.

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And here are a few comparison pictures.

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These first two show the difference sponging and dry embossing can make.  I used several embossing folders; Scroll Work, Tiny Mosaic and Love’s in the Air by Cuttlebug and Petal Burst by Stampin’ Up.

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Here we compare plain to sponged leaves which I also ran through a crimper and the stem embossed with Stampin’ Up’s Woodgrain folder.

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I upper picture shows the greeting with nothing done to it.  The bottom has been colored with a Copic marker which I also ran around the outside of the piece to hide the white edge of the print and cut piece.  Just tracing around the outer edge gives the piece a much more finished look.

Now you’re off to visit the fabulous and funny, Lisa.  I hope you enjoyed what I shared with you today and that you’ll visit me again…often 😉

Here’s the full line-up just in case you get lost:

And just before you go I wanted to let you know about a fantastic sale Stampin’ Up is having a sale!  November 21st-28th,  Get your goodies at some great prices!  Don’t wait too long after the sale starts as some items are available only while supplies last!

 

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Technique Tuesday-Dry Embossed Vellum

This is the first in my vellum and acetate series following our November Technique Blog Hop.  Today we’re talking vellum and there’s a lot to say.  First, did you know that early vellum wasn’t paper at all but from animal hide?  Today it’s made from wood pulp, cotton, synthetic materials or some combination of the three.  Vellum ranges from translucent (semi-transparent) to thicker semi-opaque.  It can be purchased plain or patterned, white or colored.

There are quite a few ways in which you can incorporate it into your card making; heat emboss it, dry emboss it, tear it, punch it, stamp on it, print on it, layer it over photos just to name a few.  Certain techniques do require careful handling and the weight of the paper should also be taken into consideration.

For this card I dry embossed the vellum…I guess you could say it’s been “raised it to new heights”.

Card made using a embossed vellum overlay. Details can be found on my blog.

When dry embossing, the weight of the paper and the amount of pressure applied need to be considered.   Too much pressure or a too thin vellum can  cause it to crack and even tear along the embossing lines.  For the card above I used  Stampin’ Up’s 45 lb Translucent, Text Weight Vellum worked perfectly with no cracking at all.  Here’s a visual comparison between SU’s vellum and a sheet of plain vellum from the Grafix 24 lb. Assortment Pack.

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Back to the card, after printing the greeting in Microsoft Publisher using the Edwardian Script font on the vellum, I cut it into a card overlay using the Sizzix Ornate Card Bigz XL Die.

By the way, I have a freebie for you   on the Hints, Tips & Tutorials page; seven pages of various options for the card front and a few choices for the inside of the card as well .  You’ll find it under Printables.  When you print it, set your printer to borderless, select only the pages you wish to print.  After printing, cut the paper in half lengthwise and score it in half widthwise.  Note: For those of you with e-cutters, I want to share something I do when using dies like this.  After die cutting, I scan it into my computer and import it to my Silhouette design screen and trace it.  Then I have the option

Next, I dry embossed it with the Elegant Bouquet folder.  The embossed flower centers were just calling out for rhinestones, so I obliged.  I attached it to a top-folding card base of textured blue by Bazzill.  I distressed the bottom edge of the card base using the Tim Holtz Distress Tool by Tonic and then sponged it with ColorBox Silver Metallic Ink.  I added a bit of braided jewelry thread to the top.

Here’s another card I made using the dry embossing method; this time with the Manhattan Flower embossing folder.  A long retired folder from Stampin’ Up, but still one of my all-time favorites.  You’ll recall I said the amount of pressure used can effect the paper…like this:

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I decided to use it anyway and just figure out how to fix it later.  In this example, I inked on the reverse of the vellum for a stained glass look.  I have full details in the gallery to keep this post from being overly long.  If you’re interested, click on the card.  I found the vellum didn’t take the ink color as smoothly as I hoped…I worked long and hard to try even out the color, but never really succeeded.   I thought I would show you one of my, “well, that didn’t work the way I thought it would” to share the benefit of my experience.

Card made with a vellum overlay colored from behind.

And here’s another card where I stamped on the card stock below the vellum panel as well as on it.  I used the lighter weight vellum for this card, so you could see the image below.  Then I dry embossed with the Dots embossing folder.  As with the second card, details can be found by clicking on the card.

Vellum flap over stamped card stock. I also stamped on the vellum.

Next week I’ll post with another way to work with vellum.  Hope to “see” you there!

KimVSignature

Dinner at Paper Crafting World

I’m excited to share my card with you today, but first I want to extend a warm welcome to Jane and Shannon M. and Shannon H. as my newest subscribers.  You are all entered in my card bundle give-away when I reach 100 e-mail followers.  It’s been a slow go, but we’re climbing.  I had similar give-aways when I reach prior milestones.  Even if you subscribe via NetWorked Blogs or Bloglovin, you will be included in the drawing.  Now on with my post!

Today’s my turn to post on Paper Crafting World, but I just touch on the highlights there.  I’m sharing my project here, too, with all the juicy details.

November brings Thanksgiving and with that comes…turkey!  I love turkey dinner with all the trimmings.  So, in celebration of that, I decided to make a card using the Turkey with Gobble Sign digital stamp.  In case you aren’t familiar with PCW’s digital stamps, they come in black and white, pre-colored and finished (with shading and digital filters).  While I enjoy coloring the images on my cards, today I opted to use the finished image and focus my attention to the card fold.

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I imported the image into my Silhouette design screen and replaced the pre-printed greeting with my own.  Then I traced it to create a cut line and sent it to print and cut.  Using the trace, I created a mirror image and color-matched it to the turkey’s body to place on the back for two reasons, to cover the white back of the printed image and to provide additional stability to the turkey.

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To create the base I used a Sliding Window cut file by Lori Whitlock.  Before I continue, one of my followers asked what I mean when I say I, “used a cut file”.   The short answer is a cut file is like a pattern to make a dress or other garment.  You purchase the basic file (pattern) and then add your own spin on it, like the seamstress would decide on what fabric and embellishments she would use.  So, back to the card base, I’ve never made this sort of card before, but it won’t be the last because I really like interactive aspect in general.   It’s pretty easy to put together…you certainly wouldn’t need a cutting machine.  Here you can see how the card works…a bit of ribbon at the top of the insert makes sliding it easier and helps the recipient to know to pull it.

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And on this card in particular, I love that I get to use a bit of my dry sense of humor on the front.  Behind the greeting, made using the Ambrosia font color matched to the turkey, is an outline of a roasted turkey.

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The patterned paper I used on the front is from the One Birdie Lane digital kit from NitWit Collections.  I changed the colors, though.  I matched them to the various colors in the turkey for a perfect combination.  One I printed everything, I matched it to Old Olive, Tangerine Tango and Very Vanilla card stocks.

I kept the inside rather simple, using the same font, with a wishbone…all that remains of the dinner guest!

I’ll be bringing you more Paper Crafting World designs next month so stay tuned!

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