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?

A Little Pick-Up at Eyelet Outlet

The way the dates fell on the calendar this month, I have three posts today and I sure don’t want you to miss any of them.  To see my Miss Kate Cuttables post, click here and for my The Cutting Cafe challenge post click here; or simply scroll down.

One of the new releases at Eyelet Outlet is an adorable Pick-Up Truck Brad.  As soon as I saw it, I knew just what I wanted to do with it.  So let me show you how I paired it with the Map and Tire Washi Tapes to make this card:

A Little Pick Up wm 1

See!  I told you that Pick-Up was adorable! Here’s a closer look.  I honestly don’t know how Eyelet Outlet manages to make something so small with such great detail.  The beauty is I don’t have to know…I just get to use them! 

I’m thrilled with the map washi, too.  It accented the truck perfectly!

A Little Pick Up wm 2

And it was a perfect fit for this card, which I’ve been wanting to make for quite some time, but couldn’t figure out just what would fit in those triple tags.  This is actually a Flip/Flap card…it’s the flip card with an extra flap so you have a full 4 1/4″ x 5 1/2″ inside with which to work.  Here’s a look at the flip in action:

 

A Little Pick Up wm 5

And here’s a better look at the flap inside with another Pick-Up brad on the Tire Washi Tape.  I placed the tape on each side and mitered the corners for a nice, finished look.

A Little Pick Up wm 6

I think this makes for a great masculine get well card.  Not that I want anyone to be sick…but I’m prepared!  Here’s another get well card I made using Eyelet Outlet Brads I particularly like.

Halloween Scene with Miss Kate Cuttables

For my card today, I used Miss Kate Cuttables Halloween Scene Borders.  I can’t wait to show it to you, but first I want to remind you to pick up your freebie of the week!

Now to my card:

The cut file generously includes three borders and I used all three.  I thought these would lend themselves well to a Bendy Card and, by George, they did!  Having never made one of these “from scratch” before, it took a bit of finagling to get everything in the right places and of the proper size.  The truly important measurements are the slots into which the sections.  Everything else is just a matter of personal taste.

Halloween Scene wm 1

I used a combination of Bazzill and Stampin’ Up card stocks.  As with all Miss Kate’s files, there are lots of layers to give real dimension to the pieces.  All of that work was done for me!

Thanks for visiting today.  I hope you return again real soon!

 

Thanksgiving Words with The Cutting Cafe

Our challenge with The Cutting Cafe is to use any cut file or printable of our choosing from the store.  Wow, what a job that was!  There are so many files from which to choose!  Since Thanksgiving is coming up next month, I decided to narrow my search to that.  I finally selected this Happy Thanksgiving Printable Set.  Turns out it was in a $.99 Cent Special section. 

And here’s what I did with it!

Thanksgiving|Card|The Cutting Cafe

I’m very happy with the finished card!  Especially since I had no clear idea of what I wanted to do.  Here’s a recap of how I meandered from the start to the finish of this card.

  1. Using Photoshop Elements, I colored the words in beautiful autumn hues and dry embossed it with the Square Lattice embossing folder.
  2. I traced the Happy Thanksgiving in my Silhouette…what a job that was.  I also created two Internal Offsets and cut the letters in three coordinating cardstocks.  Then I cut them and layered them on the printed greeting.  Here’s a closer look at that:

Thanksgiving Words wm 2

 

    3. I matted the panel on the same three colors of cardstock.  I realized once I did that I created an odd-sized piece, so my only option was to place it on a long card and             add triple-matted panels on either side.  They looked too empty, so I looked through my stash and found these wooden leaves:

Thanksgiving Words wm 4

    4. As a final touch, I coated the center greeting with clear Wink of Stella and added copper Nuvo Drops randomly.

Thanksgiving Words wm 3

    5. Just a simple sentiment for the inside, but to jazz it up a bit I created internal offsets, changing them to print only after I color-matched it to the mats and increased                the line thickness to 1.0.

Thanksgiving Words wm 5

 

If you’d like to see the projects the rest of the design team created for you this month, just visit The Cutting Cafe blog.  I promise you won’t be disappointed.  Leave a comment for a chance to win three free The Cutting Cafe files of your choice.  No cutting machine?  No problem!  All the files come complete with a .pdf so you can also cut them by hand.  Sweet!

I’m really enjoying working with The Cutting Cafe.  Have you seen any of my previous projects?  You can find one here.

 

Treat Bag Trio at Connie Can Crop

It’s my day to post at Connie Can Crop with my design team project using some adorable cut files from our sponsor this month, Dreaming Tree.

For my project this month, I used the Count Treat Bag, Frank Treat Bag, and Trixi Treat Bag.  You can also purchase them, plus two more files in the Frank & Friends Bundle for a discounted price.  So, here’s my trio:

Treat Bag Trio wm 1

I used the assembly videos to make these, no guessing where all the pieces should go.  They thought of everything when creating these bags; such attention to detail. 

Here’s a look at each bag individually:

Treat Bag Trio wm 5

Treat Bag Trio wm 4

Treat Bag Trio wm 3

These bags will be used to give treats to three little ones on our block; Ryan, Connor, and Kylie.  And these bags are a generous size, so they’ll be getting quite a few goodies in them…like one-stop shopping!

I don’t know if you saw my Connie Can Crop Challenge post this month using another Dreaming Tree file.  If you didn’t and would like to see it, here it is.  

Don’t forget about Connie Can Crop’s monthly challenge, To Die For.  Your project can be anything using a die or an e-cutter…including anything from Dreaming Tree.  Don’t have any Dreaming Tree files yet?  No problem!  Check out their freebies!  You can get additional details about the challenge or link up your project by clicking here

Chicken Crossing with Eyelet Outlet

If you’re looking for the Chills & Thrills Blog Hop, click here or simply scroll down. 

“Why did the chicken cross the road?”  Well, this card takes a look at that age-old question…from the chicken’s perspective!  The star of the show is the Chicken Brads.

Chicken Crossing wm 2

I hope their dream comes true!

This card was created by modifying a Standing Easel Card by changing where the card folds and also by tracing the top half of the road sign.  The card folds flat for mailing:

Chicken Crossing wm 3

The background was created by sponging with Distress Inks on white cardstock.  After it dried thoroughly, I embossed it with the Cloudy Day embossing folder.  I added the Sun brad in the corner to break up the empty space.  I added a grassy border to soften the edge of the card.  Looking at it again when it’s folded:

Chicken Crossing wm 1

To create the crosswalk, I cut a strip of cardstock and added Glitter Washi Tape in Black and Silver on the diagonal.  I think it worked out rather well!  The greeting was designed to fit in that open area below the crosswalk.  I just kept layering until I was happy with the look and the height.

When you open the card up fully, you see the sentiment inside.  

Chicken Crossing wm 5

I made another card with the Chicken Brads here and I just had to make another one.  They’re so darn cute! 

Thanks for stopping by today!

 

Chills & Thrills Blog Hop

Welcome to the:

It’s that time of the year when the monsters and ghouls come out to play!  They come knocking on doors in search of sweets!!  Join us as we share some of our fang-tastic and creepy projects with you!  They are sure to make you scream with delight.
 
If you arrived here from my design team sister, Sue’s, blog, you’re in the right place.  If you came here directly, you might want to start the hop at Connie Can Crop so you don’t miss a thing and increase your chances of winning.  However you came to be here, I’m just so happy you’ve joined me.
 
This is a one day hop, but you have until Sunday, October 15th, to hop and comment for each of our talented bloggers.
 
We have an awesome sponsor this month:
 
TWO lucky winners will receive a $7.99 gift certificate
 
Be sure to check out the store HERE.
Visit them on Facebook HERE.

 

What do you need to do to win? Easy… become a follower of each of the fabulous blogs in this hop and leave each of them a comment letting them know what you like best about their projects.  You will have until 10 pm Sunday to finish the hop and leave your comments.  Winners will be announced on Wednesday 10/18/17 at Connie Can Crop. Be sure to follow everyone and leave a comment along the way!
 

TRICK OR TREAT!

First up, I have a “monsterous” accordion card to share with you. (Misspelling intended, just in case you were wondering) I made it using several items from The Cutting Cafe, A Bunch of Monsters-Printable Stamp Set,  Little Monster Gang-Printable Stamp Set, and the Monster Love Background-Printable Stamp Set.

Here’s the front of the card:

Monsterous wm 2

And here it is fully opened:

Monsterous wm 3

But back to the front of the card for a moment as I want to show you the start of the show as far as I’m concerned and that’s the adorable Custom Printed Ribbon.  This is such a fantastic way to personalize any craft project.  When you link, you will see a wide variety of ribbon and print colors as well as fonts.  The application possibilities are endless!

Next, I have a gatefold card featuring an adorable little dog mummy by Pink Cat Studio.  The card, itself, was made using a cut file purchased in the Silhouette store.

Haunted House on the Hill wm 1

And here’s the gate, opened, letting the pup out on the town.  He’s on a mini action wobble spring, so he can really kick up his heels.

Haunted House on the Hill wm 2

And last is a cute little card I made using a cut file from our sponsor, Dreaming Tree.  Even better, this file is a freebie.  It was actually a treat box, but since I already made the three adorable treat bags in the Frank and Friends Bundle, I decided I would turn this into a card and I just love how it turned out.

Coffin wm 1

Now hop on over to the talented Miranda’s blog as I know she’s scared up something fun for you.

 
 
 
 

 

 
 
 
 
Here’s our spook-tacular line up in case you get lost:
 
 
Don’t forget to join our current challenge:
 
  •   Connie Can Crop Challenge #63
     due 11:59 P.M. Tuesday, October 31st, 2017
    Pacific Time

Miss Kate Cuttables Challenge-Orange & Black

 

It’s time for the October challenge at Miss Kate Cuttables.  This month the theme is Orange & Black!  But first, don’t forget to get your Miss Kate’s freebie of the day

For my project, I decided to work with this fantastic Stacked Jack-O-Lanterns cut file. 

Halloween|Miss Kate Cuttables|Shaped Card

I used Stampin’ Up’s card stock; Basic Black, Basic Gray, Perfect Peach and Pumpkin Pie with Whisper White for the inside sentiment.  As with all Miss Kate’s files, there are lots of luscious layers here; so I didn’t have to much of anything to add dimension.  My only accent was to coat the spider with Glossy Accents.

I turned this cut file into a card simply by cutting two of the largest pieces and scoring the back piece about 1/2″ down from the top.  I attached to two pieces with strong double-sided tape above the score line.

Here’s a close-up so you can see some of the detail in the file:

 

Stacked Jacks wm 3

Inside, I created a sentiment which plays off the stacked jacks.  Here’s what that looks like:

Stacked Jacks wm 4

So now it’s your turn to enter the challenge at Miss Kate’s Facebook Group.  The requirements for the challenge is to follow the theme of the month and use a Miss Kate Cuttable’s file in your creation, including any/all freebies you have.  The challenge will run from this evening through the 4th Monday of each month.  Winners will be announced, in the group, Friday of challenge end week.  Remember this month’s it’s orange and black.  Good luck!

 

Halloween Bat Treat Cup with The Cutting Cafe

If you’re looking for my Eyelet Outlet post, click here or simply scroll down. 

Our challenge today with The Cutting Cafe is to use any one of the Halloween and Fall Treat Cup Cards.  There are four complete cards; witch’s legs, bat, candy corn and an acorn together with a box and sentiments for each card.  There’s always so much packed into these files!  I decided to work with the:

Bat Treat Cup Card

Bat Treat Cup|Halloween|The Cutting Cafe 1

The pictures of the completed cards at the store looked awesome, but I was a bit intimidated at what I thought would be complicated construction.  I needn’t have worried though, as there’s a video provided which made assembly easy as 1-2-3.  I made the card and box base as well as the bat parts from Basic Black card stock.

As excited as I am to tell you more about the card, I’m over the moon about the new Custom Printed Ribbon now available at The Cutting Cafe Shop. I can think of so many possibilities for this ribbon and I bet you can, too!I made the card and box base as well as the bat parts from Basic Black card stock.

As you can see, I banded the gift box with the 5/8″ Orange Ribbon and made a banner for the top of my card as well.  I made a decision AFTER I took these pictures…ribbon this pretty needs some bling, so I’m going to go back and add some black rhinestones in between the printed greetings on the band and under the printing on the banner.  I made the card and box base as well as the bat parts from Basic Black card stock.

The card, box base, and the bat parts were cut from Basic Black card stock.  The patterned paper is from the digital Halloween Hooligans Kit from NitWit Collections.  As the paper has orange and purple in it, I added some Mike & Ike’s with matching colors.  I ate the pink and blue as they didn’t match…the things I do for my card making!

I coated the top of the bat with Wink of Stella.  Mistake!  Even though this is the clear Wink of Stella, it appeared splotchy when I applied it, so I coated it again…and again…and again to try to even things out.  It would have been better just to leave that bat alone!  The way the card is constructed, there’s a sliding panel on the back so you don’t have to destroy the card getting to the candy.

Here’s a closer look at the bat:

 

Bat Treat Cup|Halloween|The Cutting Cafe 2

I’m really enjoying working with The Cutting Cafe files.  If you missed the other projects I made, some of my favorites are here, here and here.  Our next challenge is on the 21st.  I’d give you a little hint as to what it is, but I don’t know yet!  Maybe that’s why Regina didn’t tell me…she knows I can’t keep a secret.  😉

Give Thanks at Eyelet Outlet

I’ve wanted to use the Leaf Brads to make a fall-themed or Thanksgiving card for some time, but there are so many other goodies to work with, I’m just getting around to it now.  You still have plenty of time to get these leaves if you want to make a card like this for a Thanksgiving or Fall card.  There are a number of other leaf brads, quicklets, ribbon and washi in the store as well.

 

Give Thanks|Thanksgiving Card|Shaker|Eyelet Outlet 1

I decided to make a shaker card with these brads.  I immediately thought of a window.  It’s so beautiful to look out the window on the autumn day and see the show Mother Nature puts on for us.

To do this, I snipped the brad prongs off the back and flattened any residual metal with the flat end of my paper piercer.  To ensure a nice smooth surface so the leaves would shake properly, I also added a dot of Glossy Accents to the back…worked like a charm!   I created the tree background by using a digital stamp in brown on a sky blue background.  Then I added my window over it, with acetate covering the back.  I attached it using mounting tape to allow plenty of room for the leaves to move.

I’ve made a number of shaker cards in the past.  Some of which are my all-time favorites.  There is a Shakers 101 Tutorial on the Hints, Tips & Tutorials page if you haven’t made one and are looking for a jumpstart.

 

Give Thanks|Thanksgiving Card|Shaker|Eyelet Outlet 2

 

And here’s what the leaves look like when they’ve all fallen to the ground.  Get the rake!

Give Thanks|Thanksgiving Card|Shaker|Eyelet Outlet 3

I created the greeting using another digital stamp, cut in a scalloped oval.  A slightly larger oval was used as a mat.  I covered it with Glitter Gold Washi Tape.  I also covered a strip of cardstock with the same washi tape and ran it through a Paper Crimper.  Who knew it would crimp so beautifully.

Give Thanks 2 wm 5

I used another digital stamp for the inside.  That panel was placed on a larger mat rimmed with more washi tape.  A perfect complement to the glitter on the front!

Give Thanks|Thanksgiving Card|Shaker|Eyelet Outlet 4

And speaking of gratitude and appreciation, do you know how much I appreciate you?  I know there are so many things requiring your time.  I am grateful for the fact that you take a few moments to spend with me. 

Picture Perfect-Part #1-Lighting

 

MP9004387551Oh, snap!  Yet another lousy picture!

I don’t know about you, but I post a lot of pictures between here and on social media.  Pictures that, more often than not, have been just so-so; a little blurry perhaps or a little washed out from too much flash, the object is crooked in the frame, or I have too much or insufficient border, etc.  Wanting to take better pictures or at least make the pictures I’ve taken look better, I embarked on a search for hints and tips on picture-taking and editing.  Since many of you are avid picture takers, I thought I’d share what I’ve learned with you in the event there’s something you’ll find helpful.

The first thing on my list of things I wanted to figure out was lighting,  I read a number of tutorials about this and the primary suggestion was to invest in a lightbox.  Well, I got one but I honestly can’t say my photos looked any better because of it.  Plus it was cumbersome to set up and store.  It now sits with several other “must haves” that turned into “why bother”.

So on to Plan B; figuring out how to create the proper light without a lightbox.  Much like real estate, it’s all about location, location, location:

  • Look for an area with good indirect lighting.  Indirect lighting, just in case you were wondering, is light that comes from all sides and illuminates the object totally.  If you have a room with windows on two sides, that works perfectly.
  • Or go outdoors, but again look for indirect lighting NOT full sun or your picture will look washed out and have unwanted shadows.  Morning or evening light is much preferred to midday sun.  Of course, the wind is a factor as well…you don’t want to be chasing your cards down the street.
  • But let’s focus on indoors, which is where I take all my (card) pictures; you should bring your project to the level of the window.  Here are several pictures I found online to show you what I mean.  As you can see, you really don’t need a fancy setup.  The back of the chair in each case holds the backdrop (card stock) for you.   The photo on the right shows the added option of accessorizing to match the theme of the card…I’ll talk more about that later.

HTDT setup 1

photo-shoot-set-up

I’m not blessed with a good light source as I do most of my photographing in the basement with just a small window at ceiling level, so I have to take additional steps to create “natural” light.

  • A foam core display board works really well to add light.  Here you can see the reflective quality of the white color and the angled sides.  If working with something like this, you just adjust the side panels until you see the light reflected on your project.  It’s subtle, but it works in most cases.

HTDT setup 2

  • If the foam core isn’t quite sufficient, you can help it out by adding artificial light. I use an Ott light as it’s about as close to natural light as you can get.  I got one of these because I work in an area with fluorescent lighting and there are times when I just need natural light…more so as my eyes are getting older.  Using it for photographing my cards is just an added bonus.  Here’s a comparison of a “daylight” light versus traditional artificial lighting.

ott light

Here are a few pictures I found showing how people use added lighting.  Notice how the light is directed down from the top as opposed to the sides, which would create unwanted shadows.  If you find you absolutely have to light from the side, do so from both sides to provide even lighting.

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Still need more light?

  • One final tip I found online at DIY Craft Photography was referred to as “bounce” lighting.  Basically, it’s a cheap and easy way of recreating the effect of a photography umbrella.  Look at the difference in these two pictures.  And then look at the magic of the bounce tool they created from cardboard, aluminum foil, and duct tape.

bounce 1bounce 2

Now I know not all of you are interested in photographing cards, but the same theory holds true no matter what images you’re capturing.  If you try any of these tips, please let me know how you made out and if you saw any improvement.

Stay tuned for Picture Perfect #2-Camera & Settings when I share what I learned and found helpful.

KatyVSignature