Thursday, March 27, 2014

March Madness Week #4/Thinking Outside the Box

Recently I traveled to the UK and taught a Dreamweaver Stencils teacher's certification course to store owners and teachers. Nina Lavelle (who owns a store called Creativity and Crafts in Eastbourne England) emailed me her final project a few days ago and I was amazed at how "outside the box" her creation was. She used the Molten Magic technique and a stencil design called Vintage Decor (LX7022). Suddenly she had turned this very traditional stencil design into a "bug" for a get well card. I asked her if I could share her tutorial on our March Madness posting and she generously allowed me to do it is:

Along the edge of the card it reads...

"Hear You Have A Bug"...cute idea Nina. 

The Molten Magic technique is quite simple. You can use any of the glossy embossing pastes and Nina used the Glossy Black Embossing Paste (DGKP).

Start by taping off all of the edges of the stencil when you paste-emboss. This ensures that none of the paste will go under of off the edges of the stencil. I like to impress people that the first piece of tape that you put down should be your "hinge" and that way your stencil won't smear the image as you remove the tape.

When I paste a very large stencil I like to use the paste spreader but I use the regular palette knife to pull the paste out of the jar. 

The Metallic F/X powders are kept handy and after the stencil is removed the "bug is sprinkled with two or three different colors of these mica powders.You can apply them with a stencil brush for a fine sprinkling or if you want to be more generous you can use a small scoop to add the colors. Work quickly because the paste needs to be wet for the powders to attach. Next tap off the excess powders. Now take a heat gun that heats very hot and start by heating the image underneath and then on top of the image. The thinner you have pasted the smaller the bubbles. If the paste-embossing is very thick your bubble may need to be tapped down with your fingers once it has cooled a bit. This will keep them from breaking or getting brittle.

Some of the new Dreamweaver die cut leaves (DD003) were cut out of crumpled brown paper and added as an embellishment to the creation on the left side of the card. Then the "bug" was cut out and added as well. It looks like some type of beetle that you would find amongst the leaves of the ground in a forest.

Such a fun card: Here is the final result!
Please join the fun...we have one more week of our March Madness ...anything goes! There will be three random winners chosen this month! If you need to know how to link up with the linky tool click HERE for more information. Don't forget to follow the list below to see what the team has posted this week. Leave them some love in the way of helpful generous comments and you could be our forth random winner this month. These winners are announced the first week of the next month's challenge right here on the Dream it UP blog.

Thursday, March 20, 2014

Thursday's Dream Schemes: Week #3 of the March Madness Challenge

These foxes come in two sizes LL3030 and small LM2016
Last week I did an extra little challenge, it was for those of you who read to the end of my blog and leave comments for my team.  There are three winners: Amante del Papel, Janis and Rose S. I will be sending you a special stencil of MY email me your snail mail addys and I will get your prize stencil to you ASAP! 

Thank you,  Pam Hornschu, (head of our Dream it UP team) for coming up with something new and interesting for challenges each month. I am really enjoying posting this month for the March Madness/Anything Goes Challenge

AND....I have loved seeing so many wonderful creations as each of you are meeting that challenge. Thank you for joining us.

Click HERE to learn how to link up to the linky tool if you need some help.

My post this Thursday is all about a created card from my friend Polly Weed. Polly traveled for many years doing rubber stamp shows and selling my stencils under the business name "Polly's Pals" and she still has an online presence. Polly does wonderful work with our stencils using them with pastels and the regular embossing paste (DEP). We sometimes refer to this paste as the maroon label embossing paste.
This paste is available in an 8oz. DEPL and DEP  4oz.

It is matte white and has two properties that make it perfect for Polly's stenciling style. Number one it is porous and is wonderful to stencil on top of and number two it is porous and is wonderful to stencil under. How does that work? Well, this is how she does it:

The first step is to stencil the paper with pastels. Really important in this first procedure is that after you load the brush ( and don't overdo the loading ) tap the brush onto a paper towel and then with a circular rouging motion stencil off the outer edge of the stencil design moving the pastel a bit at time toward the center. Don't get overzealous...easy does it. Once you have stenciled the fox stencil (LL3030) the next step is to paste-emboss the fox with the aforementioned regular embossing paste (DEP). Once the image is dry the pastels very softly seep through the porous paste for a delightful soft coloration. The next step for Polly is to get out the pastels and intensify anything that she wants to enrich with a bit more color. So you see that the porous aspect of this paste is nice for stenciling with the pastels.  Thank you Polly, for sharing this beautiful card on a MAD MAD Thursday!

Now don't forget to visit the rest of the team to see what MADNESS they have been stirring up! And be sure to leave them some love in the way of comments.

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Thanking "the rose" for playing along!

I love it when someone who doesn't have a blog takes me at my word and sends an email with a creation to join the challenge.

Rose sent this beautiful creation and here is how she created this "March Madness" card in her own words:

"The madness part is using the Grafix rub-on. I’ve had it for years but broke it out for this challenge. 

The shell (LM104) is done with the molten magic technique using Tim Holtz distress inks and translucent embossing paste. The sentiment is done on the computer and then printed on the rub-on sheet. A glue sheet is applied to the back and then the sentiment is cut out as close as possible the plastic backing is removed, the rub-on applied to the card stock and then the top plastic cover peeled off (and not easily I might add!!). I was pleased with the result. I then mounted it on cardstock which was run through an embossing folder and mounted on the card."

Very clever Rose, I have never hear of the Grafix rub-on material. I love that sentiment too! How true! It's cool to hear that people are digging into their stash and finding time to use it.

We still have time left in our challenge so if you don't have a blog and become inspired I am ready to add your creation right here. Just send me an email with a picture and a brief description (or lengthy if you desire) and I will post it here for you.

If you do have a blog and came by to post for the monthly challenge scroll down to last Thursdays post and link up with the linky tool. More instructions there if you need it.

Thursday, March 13, 2014

Thursday's Dream Schemes: March Madness Challenge

Yes, March Madness could mean a lot of things!

1. It could mean "thinking outside the box".

2. It could mean using something in your stash that you haven't ever tried before.

3. Try a new medium or substrate. Make a dimensional project instead of a card or a scrapbook page.

4. could mean using your favorite technique with your favorite stencil or stamp.

Whatever you do for our challenge this month be sure to have a "Maddeningly" good time and if you have never used our linky tool below click HERE to know more.

I have had in my stash for some time now some shrink plastic from Lucky Squirrel. It really is an "Artist's Grade Shrink Plastic"...just like they advertise. It shrinks evenly and doesn't do squirrely annoying things when you work with it. So on this March Madness Thursday I decided to add it to my Celebrate card. I cut an oval slightly larger than my Celebrate stencil (LS90) and sanded it then I stenciled it with Memories ink and a large stencil brush. I then used a traditional paper punch and punched a hole into the end of the oval near the "C" in celebrate. This of course needs to be a good sized hole because when the plastic shrinks this hole will shrink too. Then I placed the oval onto a piece of aluminum foil and set it in the oven (preheated to 325 degrees F.) for three minutes. I like using the oven because it heats so evenly compared to my heat gun. So there it is attached to my stenciled card with ribbon.

The card was a simple and quick technique called "Letterpress" which took less than five minutes to create. Here are the materials and process for the creation:


Vintage Decor Stencil (LX7022)

Memories Mists Sprays: Mango Lemonade (MM01) Cherry Smoothie (MM15) Blue Martini (MM21)
Cardstock: 80# (or heavier) white cardstock
Stencil Brush: 3/4" Natural Handle Dreamweaver Stencil Brush (or #18 size)
Cardboard box to use for a spray booth.
Embossing Machine: I use either the Cuttlebug or the Big Shot


1. Place the thick white plate onto the deck of the embossing machine. The Cuttlebug white plate is referred to as the "A" plate. The Big Shot white plate is referred to as the "Platform" and the two tabs that are added as shims with this plate are not used in this Letterpress technique with stencils.
2. Place a thin piece of scrap paper onto the thick white plate of your embossing machine to protect it from excess ink.
3. Place a paper towel in the bottom of the cardboard box.
4. Position the stencil on top of the paper towel.
5. Shake up the bottle of Mango Madness spray and spritz the stencil two or three times. It doesn't need to be too wet just well moistened.
6. Spritz on top of this spray just a couple of times with the Cherry Smoothie spray.
7. Gently pick up the stencil by the sides and position it on the scrap paper that you pre- pared in step #2 with the inked side facing up.
8. Position the white or light colored cardstock face down onto the inked stencil.
9. Gently place the thick Stamping Details mat onto the back of the cardstock.
10. Now place the two acrylic plates onto the rubber mat and run this sandwich of plates, stencil, paper and rubber mat through the the machine. Remember to follow this stacking method carefully to protect the stencil from being rolled and consequently warped. (Using warped acrylic plates can warp your stencils, so try to have a set just for stencil embossing.)
11. Now remove the plates and rubber mat to reveal the embossed card that you have created. Place it back into the booth and position the clean stencil on top of the design that was just embossed. This time spray the stencil with the Blue Martini color. Only give it one or two spritzes with the spray. There will be excess spray sitting on top of the stencil. Now use your large stencil brush and pull the color into the holes of the stencil in a swiping motion. This will pull the color across the embossed image and use this excess ink to shade and colorize the stencil design.

Hope you'll have as much fun creating as I did and join our March Madness. Below is a list of the design team who have been going crazy creating this past week, please take time to leave them some love. This week I am going to sneak a stencil gifty to someone who takes time to leave a comment for each of the team. Stay tuned and next Thursday I will announce a random winner for this kind hearted stencil enthusiast!

Thursday, March 6, 2014

March Madness/Thursday's Dream Schemes Challenge and We have a Winner

MAD I tell you! We're all going MAD! That is...MAD for Dreamweaver Stencils! Lol. Welcome to our "March Madness" challenge! Anything goes, and the more outside-of-the-box, the better. This year, we're aiming to play with non-traditional challenges whenever possible. So, break out all of your I-never-quite-knew-what-to-do-with-these-products stash, look at your Dreamweaver stencils in a whole new creative light, and get crafting! Oh, and don't forget to link those creations to the linkytool on the Dream It Up! blog for one of THREE chances to win the stencil of your choice! If you are a bit lost on how to join the challenge click HERE to know more of the details. Need some crazy ideas? Check our "A" team first, and our very special guest designer and Certified Dreamweaver teacher...Ms. Georgia Sommers!

And we have a random winner from our "February Flutters" challenge. It is, Janeen K, and here is the card she joined our challenge with: 

Thank you Janeen for joining in the fun of last month's challenge.  The molten magic technique that you used on your card was really great. Please choose any stencil you would like from and send me an email with your choice and your snail mail address: and I will get that out to you quickly!

As usual, this month I am going in many directions so going MAD will come quite naturally for me. This week I am posting a card done by Marj Marion another extraordinary stenciler in my life who I am fortunate to know. Although the technique is not difficult it is quite unusual and I thought it might inspire you to try something similar. 

As I said this is a really simple technique: Marj first paste-embossed the gears stencil (LJ911)with glossy black embossing paste (DGKP) and then while it was still wet she sprinkled it with a bronze (or copper) embossing powder. If you are having problems finding just the right powder in your stash you might consider some the the Stampendous Frantage powders that are available. You could even go crazy and mix your own from what you have.

You can finish this process two different ways, you can wait for the paste to dry and then heat the powder or you can heat it right away for a more molten bubbly effect. This often happens when you heat wet embossing paste.

She then added a sentiment and metal cog with ribbon from May Arts to make her card complete.

Now don't forget to follow our design team on the "A" list this week for a more inspiring "March Madness", leave them some love in the form of a nice comment and come back to  join the fun!

Saturday, March 1, 2014

Answering the Challenge

Sandi R. has taken me at my word and emailed me two cards for the February Flutters Challenge. The first beautiful card features the running horses stencil (LL559). I love the embellishments too Sandi! The stencil was paste-embossed with metallic gold embossing paste. Then she darkened the manes and hooves with a sharpie marker and tapped an ink pad at the base for desert-like hills. Once it was dry she added a couple of layers of clear embossing powder on top of the horses for a faux cloixonné effect.  

Her second card is fluttering leaves (LJ906) done again with the metallic gold embossing paste. Then she did the red leaves with the faux cloisonn é technique. She then cut them out and placed them on the gold embossed leaves. The live love laugh stencils (LL403) were used for the sentiments using a couple of different colors of paste smoothed together as they were applied. Gorgeous job on both cards, Sandi. I will enter your name twice for the random drawing this week.

Sandi shared with me that she promotes recycling and she used the navy blue cardstock that the stencils come on to create her cards this week. Thanks for the tip!

Sandi asked me if I knew of a way of joining the challenges without having a blog. I know maintaining a blog and creating it can be beyond some of our technical abilities as well as a time sucking venture. My husband joins some challenges by having a Flickr account. It doesn't cost anything and is only available to those people that you link it to. So you could link to our challenges whenever you want. Go to to find out more.