Monday, March 29, 2021

Altenew Educators Blog Hop - Favorite Old/New Stamp Blog Hop

Hello everyone and welcome back!  As you've probably noticed, I have been taking some time off from  "official" work to work on some other projects.  It is really difficult to work when my husband is working a combined shift of 4 weeks of days/2 weeks of nights and repeat.  He's in the guest room (which has black out film on the windows) trying to sleep during the day, which is next to my office.  You probably won't see a lot of blogging this year, but there will be some from time to time. Today I am back with Altenew for an Altenew Educator Blog Hop where we're featuring an old or new favorite or both!  You'll get a chance to see one of the things I've been playing with behind the scenes so let's get started.

Along with many of my industry friends, I have become obsessed with Gel Press Printing.  My friend, Lydia Fiedler, does Facebook lives every day during the week, and one of the things she's shown us is Gel Press Printing.  I resisted temptation as long as I could but finally caved in and bought a gel press.  A few days after that, Jennifer McGuire did a demonstration with hers using Distress Oxide Inks, so I have multiple mediums to try!  If you're interested in a class, I recommend Lydia Fiedler's classes on Gel Pressing.  

Since I last blogged, I had to replace my computer monitor, (yes I still like my desktop computer), so my photos look really different to me.  My previous monitor was 18 years old and it was made for photographers (what I did at that time) so it had a very high contrast ratio of 10,000 to 1.  Well, monitors have come a long way in 18 years and my contrast ratio is now 10,000,000 to 1!  WOWEE!  Plus, it's about twice as big as my old one.  Now that I'm getting back to work, I am definitely really enjoying this new monitor.  

For my first two projects today, I used a Gel Press Print for the backgrounds along with a couple of new-to-me Altenew products; Swirl Motif Die Set and Climber Flowers Dies.  The Climber Flowers are super easy to die-cut and put together.  The Swirl Motif is a bit more tedious for the top layer, but I made it easier by die-cutting some paper that already had adhesive on the back to make it go easier.  You just have to be careful as the die is very fine and detailed so it would be easy to rip.  I didn't have any trouble, but I was pretty careful.  I love the shiny gold on the shimmering gold shadow layer.

The flowers require three different colors or coordinating cardstock as do the leaves.  So a light, medium, and dark color cardstock in the same color family.  If you want to make it easy, use the Altenew Gradient Cardstock paper packs. But if you're like me and have a bazillion paper scraps, then grab your scraps and go for it.  

For the Swirl Motif Die, I used two different shimmer gold cardstock shades but just one shiny gold cardstock for the very detailed part of the die.  Just a note: I thought I had torn my die, but the very detailed fine piece actually cuts in two pieces.  So, don't freak out if it comes out in two pieces. I used a sentiment from the Beautiful Day Stamp Set.  It continues to be one of my all-time favorites!  

My next project was done with a specific person in mind.  There is a couple that my husband and I have been friends with for 37 years.  The guys have actually been friends since 1978.  Not long after we got married, we traveled to their home and we girls met for the first time.  It was instant friends from the start.  We've gone through a lot through the years together.  Births, deaths, weddings, divorces, and even a lung transplant, plus all the things in between that come with being friends for decades.  In January, we received word that Carol Jean had been in a terrible car accident.  The whole situation was very touch & go in the beginning but she is still with us and all of her injuries will eventually heal.  She had broken and bruised bones and complications of blood clots which is common after a broken bone.  So, we are super happy she is still with us.  Carol Jean is a very beloved person in her present community and the one she came from.  She taught mathematics at a college in western Kansas for many years and then taught for several years when they relocated to south-central Kansas.  Her husband cracked jokes about asking her for her autograph because people who love and know her came out of everywhere.  He didn't know just how loved she was and how many people cared.  I'm happy to say that she went home from the Rehab Hospital on March the 10th.  She is still in a wheelchair, but she'll get out of that maybe in a few more months.   

That said, I know she is going to need a great many "Thank You" cards.  She broke her wrist, so it might be a while before she needs them, but I'm going to send them just the same.  She sends a lot of cards each year and I make them for her when I can and know I am going to see her.  She always appreciates getting them. 

Both of us really enjoy the color Plum, so it was easy to decide what colors to work with when deciding on my project.  I wanted to use the Sweet Rose Bouquet Stamp Set because I do love it for simple but impactful stamping on a simple card.  I decided to make 10 of them, so I just did 10 of each layer of stamping before moving on to the next layer.  

I used the Sugarplums and Green Fields Collections of inks with one minor addition.  To make the blooms a little bit pinker, I stamped the first layer in Rose Quartz and then stamped over that layer with Pale Mauve.  This adds just that little bit more pink by putting that layer underneath.  I did all the stamping on white 4.25-inch by 5.5- inch panels and then cut them down before assembling the cards. 

Of course, before I could finish typing my blog post for this hop and another I was to participate in, my keyboard bit the dust!  Now, I am really hard on a keyboard and it takes no time at all of me to wear the letters of the keys.  Unfortunately, that wasn't the issue!  I would type along and only about 2 of every 10 letters actually worked and typed in.  So I had to order a new keyboard online since our local favorite store, Frye's, went out of business nationwide during the pandemic.  That has happened to a lot of companies this past year.  Anyway, it took over a week for my new keyboard to get here so I wasn't able to participate in the Celebrating Parents Blog Hop last week.    

I have one more style of card that I made in multiples for my friend.  I sent about 30 - 40 cards in all.  I don't count really, I just try to send as many as I can that fits with her current need.  

For these cards, I used the Positive Vibes Stamp Set (my old favorite) and coordinating dies, with some pretty patterned paper I had in Navy Blue and Yellow which I thought would make for a beautiful presentation for some thank you cards.   To see the many projects along the hop, here is your blog roll list.  

Altenew Educator Blog Hop List
Altenew Card Blog

Thank you all so much for stopping by today to celebrate my first Blog Hop of this year.  I have another coming along in June so I'll be back then to share new projects with you at that time.   

If you'd like to shop for any of the products I've mentioned, here is my affiliate link for you.  Just click the box! 

Thanks so much for stopping by today to catch up with me.  I especially enjoy it when you take the time to leave a comment, so I hope you will.