Friday, March 30, 2012

Friday Funnies: Deceptive Dishes

With April Fool's Day coming up this weekend, I thought you might enjoy these fake-out foods...whether you choose to use them for a prank or not!

There are tons of recipes available to trick your tongue, such as this seemingly common breakfast item:

Can you believe it's really cauliflower soup with garam masala-spiced toasted-Os cereal?

And have you seen the ever popular meatloaf cake:

For dinner, you could have dessert first and then enjoy your entree! While some recipes make savory ingredients look sweet, others do just the opposite. I'd love to try this cashew chicken stir fry:

Hold the soy sauce, please!

These hamburger cookies look yummy, too:

I won't be experimenting in the kitchen this weekend, however, because Steve and I will be at the Stamping by the Sea convention in Ocean City, MD. If you're planning to attend, please stop by the Inky booth and say hello!

In the meantime, how about we "dish up" some BLOG CANDY? If you've got a favorite faux recipe to share, please post the link in the comments section of this post and/or describe what it is. Or just let me know which of the above foods you'd like to try.

I'll take entries until next Tuesday at midnight Central time for a chance to win our 10961LC Prepping Chefs Clear Set (drawn by artist Ronnie Walter):

The winner will be randomly chosen on Wednesday, and I'll post the results here. Good luck, and I hope you have a wonderful weekend!

Thursday, March 29, 2012

Touch Twin Markers Challenge Sponsor

We're excited to be the sponsor for the current Touch Twin Markers Challenge:

This challenge has already started and will be running through April 14th. Look at the fun color palette they've chosen:

If you don't have any Touch Twin markers, you can still participate. For the time being, you can use any coloring medium.

The best part? At the end of this challenge, one person will be randomly chosen among the entries to win 12 Touch Twin markers!

If you need a bit of inspiration, check out this fun card designed by Tami Mayberry featuring 11082MC Bee Benton Clear Set (drawn by artist Darby New, with the image also available as 0218F Benton's Honey in the wood mounted version):

Here's a terrific tie-dye style Benton card (8722G Benton's Hiding & 2843G Can't Bear-lieve or 11081MC Aviator Benton Clear Set) created by Lydia Fiedler:

This cheery card was made by our talented DT member Tex Gerard with 11099MC Spring Blooms Clear Set (drawn by artist Vicki Schreiner, also available as wood mounted 2854H Daffodil Pot):

Another springtime beauty is this HoneyPOP card created by Jeanne Streiff (using 11090MC Tulip Duck HoneyPOP Set, drawn by artist Tammy DeYoung):

Love those HoneyPOP cards? We love this one designed by Vicki Garrett, too! It was made with 11025MC Caterpillar HoneyPOP Clear Set, also drawn by Tammy DeYoung:

So, are you planning to play in the challenge? We hope the answer is yes, and best of luck to you!

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

"Try It Different" Tuesday: Believe Rabbit

It's raining rabbits today...lots and lots of our 10303J Believe Rabbit, drawn by artist Tammy DeYoung. Check out this terrific trio, for instance:

These adorable cards were created by Lana Lepinski. They're so cute, I wanted to give you a closer peek at each one. You can click on each of the photos to view an enlarged version, if you wish:

The above layout is simple but effective. The torn paper matting is a neat way to showcase the main image. Here is another version:

Or you can try stitched color blocking, as Lana did here:

For a completely different look, Kirsten Butts used a lighter color palette:

Kirsten outlined the rabbit with a light grey marker, which helps make the image stand out. She used watercolors and left a lot of white space to give an airy feeling to this "girly" card.

This "boy version" created by Heather Nichols, with its kraft cardstock panel and white-inked edges, is just as appealing:

Or you can use bolder patterns and more paper choices to really add "oomph" to your card, as Lana did with this one:

No matter how you choose to design your cards, it's all about having fun. Hope you have a "hoppy" day, Inky friends!

Monday, March 26, 2012

Easter Hop Congrats

Congrats to Tammy and Tami B., whose names were drawn randomly from our Easter Blog Hop entries. (Tammy and Tami, please email me with your address.)

Tammy said...
OMGosh this is sooo cute Crystal!! I love that sweet image and the fun, fun sentiment!! Hugs, Tammy
March 22, 2012 at 5:42 PM

Tami B. said...
This is such a fun set that you used and so many possibilities. The team did a great job on all of their projects. I really enjoyed the hop.
March 22, 2012 at 9:02 AM

Tammy won 11095SC Flower Chick Clear Set (drawn by artist Tammy DeYoung):

This contains the stamps that Crystal used on her adorable basket. Tammy will also receive a "surprise" non-Easter clear set from our newest catalog flyer.

Tami B. won 11094SC Easter Millie Clear Set (also drawn by Tammy DeYoung):

This is the set that I used for my hop card. Tami will receive a "surprise" new Inky clear set, as well.

Thanks very much to everyone who participating in this hop. We're so glad you joined us and hope you had a good time!

Sunday, March 25, 2012

Sunday Stamping With Allie Gower: Daisy Teacup

I think it's interesting to discover where other stampers find inspiration for their projects. In Allie Gower's interview, she said, "Wow, I get asked that a lot. I find inspiration EVERYWHERE. At times, it’s almost overwhelming. I sometimes have to use a sketch or make a list of mundane things just to bring me back down from an inspiration high.

"When I need inspiration, I look a lot at ads, especially fashion magazines and high end stores, because they’re usually really well designed as far as composition--balance, color, etc. I just plug in the theme I’m going for, and everything else falls into place."

One thing that made me laugh was her reply to the part asking for a little-known fact about herself. She said, "I'm seriously geographically impaired. I could get lost going next door, so please, leave a trail of bread crumbs!"

When I saw this week's project, I thought, "Why not cupcake crumbs instead? That sounds even better to me!" Just look at this gorgeous cupcake box she made:

Allie used 11096MC Daisy Bouquets Clear Set, drawn by artist Vicki Schreiner:

Here's a closeup of the box front, which features one of the pretty images from the set (also available as 2893J Daisy Teacup in wood mounted):

Not only did Allie blend the colors beautifully on the image, but the patterned paper panels and pearls add a lovely touch.

And check out the layering:

That's right, she double-stacked them with foam tape for extra dimension!

The cut-out top was left open on this sample, but you could easily adhere Clear Cardstock underneath to "seal" this area if you wanted:

Allie described her stamping style in five words: You can do this too!

"That’s my style, she said. "Stamping should be fun for everyone, and I used to try and find all kinds of amazing new techniques with strange products, and I’m while I’m not completely over that chemist phase now, I find that I want to do simpler things that others can easily do as well."

Want to make your own decorated cupcake box? To create the basic box shape, Allie had an AccuCut die. Or you could use the CCBX01 Cupcake Box Pattern Template from our sister company Darcie's for another version.

* * *

I've sure enjoyed having Allie as our Inky Guest Designer in March, and I hope you have, too! Please join me in thanking her for sharing such fantastic projects with us.

As for Allie's parting comments? She had these "words of stamping wisdom" to pass along:

Be fearless. Like what you create, learn from what you don’t, and allow your style to grow with you. Don’t rely on the approval of others to dictate what you do. If you love what you do, do it a lot, and become good at it.

Keep sharing, the right audience will find you. If you’re finding that your skills are stagnating, take a class or try something new. Hone and stretch the skills you’ve attained. If you love what you’re doing, you and your work will shine. You’ll be happy, and we’ll know it.

Saturday, March 24, 2012

Bunny Egg Holder Tutorial

If you joined our Easter Blog Hop earlier this week, you saw the wonderful projects created by our Inky Design Team. (Psst...if you missed that post, there is still time to play along. Hop with us and leave comments before tomorrow at midnight, and you'll be entered for chances to win prizes!)

My friend Keri Lee Sereika was part of our very first team back in 2006, and now she's an "honorary" DT member. She participated in this month's hop and used 11038MC Bunny #3 Clear Set for her project:

Did you see the adorable egg holder she created:

She started by coloring the egg-holding bunny image (0730J Sm. Bunny's Big Egg in wood mounted) with pencils and blending with Gamsol:

The above photo also shows how she stamped the image again onto patterned paper from My Mind's Eye Stella Rose Hazel 6x6 Paper Pad and cut out the egg portion, so she could adhere it on the colored image.

The egg holder base was made from a 1" x 6" strip of white cardstock punched with a scalloped border punch and then layered from behind onto a 2" x 5 1/2" strip of light pink cardstock:

Keri rolled it up and adhered the short ends together:

Then she wrapped a 6" piece of 20 gauge Artistic Wire around a paint brush handle, leaving 1" at each end straight. She used a scrap of white cardstock to adhere one end of the wire inside the rolled egg holder:

She stamped the saying from the clear set (or 0740D Sm. Some-bunny Easter in wood mounted) onto a rectangular piece of white cardstock and notched one end into a "v" to create a flag shape.

The other end of the flag shape was folded over the open end of the wire and adhered into place. Want2Scrap's self-adhesive pearls and crystals were added as an embellishment to the flag and bunny's egg:

The finished bunny piece was adhered to the egg holder base using foam squares:

And, ta da, that was it! For the photo, Keri placed a hardboiled egg into the holder, but she suggested substituting a Cadbury egg if you wish.

If you'd like to download a PDF file of the instructions, click here. Thanks so much to Keri for creating this egg-ceptionally cute project and providing the tutorial!

Friday, March 23, 2012

Friday Funnies: Dogs

Sometimes dogs can be helpful:

While at other times, not so much:

There are the cute types:

And those who are funny:

We spotted that "car dog" when we were in California for the Carson show earlier this month, and he made us crack up! Here's a closer view:

This little guy is both cute and funny:

Speaking of funny, I kept bugging Ted to tell his dog joke so I could share it with our blog readers. After we finally got packed up from the Carson show, he agreed to let me record it:

Hope you have a dog-gone great day, Inky friends!

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Easter Blog Hop

Did some-bunny say Easter? Yep, it's right around the corner...and we have rabbit and chick projects to share with you! This month's blog hop features our newest Easter clear sets, along with a few classic favorites, drawn by artists Tammy DeYoung and Janie Miller.

To see what our designers made, please visit each DT member's blog and leave comments along the way. The more you comment, the better your chances are to win. (Limit one comment per blog, please.)

The blog hop starts today and ends on Sunday, March 25th at midnight Central time. Two people’s names will be drawn at random to receive a surprise Inky Easter prize pack! The winners’ names will be announced next Monday, so remember to stop back and see if you’ve won.

Ready to hop? Here's the order:


Once you're finished, please come back here to see my project and leave a final comment. Happy hopping, Inky friends!

* * *

For this hop, I used 11094SC Easter Millie Clear Set (drawn by artist Tammy DeYoung):

Just like our previously released clear sets featuring the adorable Millie Mousie character (10951MC, 10995MC, 11000MC, and 10999SC with her friend Mervin), you can mix and match the various elements for a number of different looks.

Here's a center step card created that I created with Millie holding the Easter basket:

This fun card design is easy to make, and it only takes a few cuts and folds. For a PDF file of the instructions that you can download and print out, click here.

I'd originally created the above card as one of the samples in the March Inky Board Program:

A few weeks ago, we shipped these sample boards (and the stamps used to make them) to stores that are subscribed to our Inky Monthly Sample Board Program. Click here for a list of stores who received the March shipment.

We encourage you to call ahead to verify they have these stamps in stock, and then please visit them to make your purchase. However, if you're unable to find a local retailer carrying stamps from this blog hop, you may order them online from us here.

Know a local stamp or scrapbook store that might be interested in our board program? Please ask them to email me for details. If they sign up for it and provide your name as a referral at that time, I'll send you a little thank-you goodie!

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

"Try It Different" Tuesday: Inkster

Are you "feline" like viewing a couple of cards? Well, then you're in the right place!

Today we're featuring 10075MC Cute Cats #4 Clear Set:

Allie Gower used two of the kitty images (0674H Inkster and 1361F Peek Over, drawn by artist Janie Miller), along with 8622D Friends Like You (also in 11093MC Groovy Nature Clear Set, drawn by artist Tammy DeYoung) to create this "meow-valous" card:

I love how she added dimension to it:

Not only did she raise the lower left kitty panel with foam dots, but can you see how Inkster's tail is elevated? Yep, she added a self-adhesive pearl to give it just the right amount of lift. How creative is that!

Here's a completely different type of card I made with Inkster:

The common term for this one is a "joy fold" card, and you can tell why when the upper and lower flaps are pulled open:

I've put written an instruction sheet on how to make this card. You can download that PDF file here.

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Sunday Stamping With Allie Gower: Delightful Dogs

When artist Janie Miller first submitted the stamp designs for 11076MC Delightful Dogs #3 Clear Set, they made me grin from ear to ear:

I still get a smile on my face whenever I look at them, especially when I see the stamps in a project like this:

Cute card, right? Allie Gower did a wonderful job, which anyone can see at first glance.

But if you look closer, you'll notice all the details that really make her project stand out! Take a peek at the shaker pouch, for instance. Not only is it filled with fun bead inclusions, but the dog image (0401F Butterfly Pup) is beautifully colored and blended:

And check out the butterfly and dog's paws, which are layered and popped up with foam tape:

Oh, but there's more! It's not just a regular shaker card. Push back the easel-style front, and you'll see the hidden treats inside:

Here's a better view of the shallow acetate box that holds the candies:

The base card measures 6" x 12", and it's scored at 6" and 9". The card front is 6" x 6", and the candy panel (with 0349D Fluttering By saying) is 2 1/4" x 5 7/8" with a 1 3/8" x 2 1/2" cut-out window:

I love how the chocolate pieces are neatly lined up like little soldiers:

Little soldiers waiting to be devoured by me, that is! You'll have to make your own, Inky friends. :-)