My blog is called "Creative Smiles" because my designs are the result of covering up mistakes. My fumble fingers drop whatever they are holding - repeatedly. Hence, the giggles and smiles of creative patience all throughout my crafting process. xx

Thursday, June 04, 2020

Lavinia World #28 - Christmas

Hello, Sweet Blogging Friends!
I hope this finds you full of good health and gratitude.
(Please accept my freebie gift at the end of this post)

Four cards

Yep! It's time for another Lavinia World Challenge!

Store -- Facebook -- Instagram
Play in our Anything Lavinia Facebook Group
and/or our Anything Goes Challenge Blog

These are simple cards, that really do look pretty!
So let me share how to extend the use of your die cut collection.

First, that pretty white Spellbinders die is a single cut. It makes the white background for the green Sue Wilson die. Ink the stamp with Shady Lane Versafine Clair ink. Cut it out with an oval die.


To change the SW ornate die into a frame, the die was left in place, then a dry-embossing sandwich was used to emboss the die cut, and finally, while the green cardstock was still in the die, a craft knife was used to cut out the oval center, creating a frame for the stamped image.

layering orate sets can make a pretty, delicate card with lots of texture.

Here you can see the same techniques used in burgundy colors. The image was stamped in Chianti Versafine Clair Ink, then heat set with a similarly colored embossing powder. If you look just above the word "Merry" you can see the overlapping "line" from the pieced together white slit. Otherwise, those circles would not have a white background. The embossed image would have shown instead.

The above card was stenciled with black ink, and a glossy silver "Merry Christmas". The card below was stenciled with Worn Lipstick Oxide ink, and has a white "Merry Christmas" which has been placed on a matching heat embossed "slab".

Maybe the differences are more clearly seen here (just click on the photos to enlarge):

Products Used:

Would you like a freebie Christmas digital sentiment?

My gift to you - for use on the inside or outside of your projects. Please do not sell the sentiment. Use it on any of your projects, including projects involving any design teams you might be on.

Click on the image to bring it to full size. Because of the changes Google Made with Blogger in June 2020, your image will appear solid black. Don’t panic. Right click and do a SAVE. Once it is saved on your hard drive, you can open it and it will have a transparent background. I could make JPG instead, but I prefer PNGs so they can be placed anywhere on a scene or project, and so backgrounds can be made using them. Please let me know if you have any problems.


On a Personal Note:

It is with great sadness that this is my final Lavinia World project as part of the really great Fantasy Team. Such a marvelous group of talented artists, and I think my favorite team ever. Each member of this team is kindly and caring in every way. I already miss the sweet camaraderie of the group. THAT BEING SAID... It will be fun cheering on these wonderful fairy friends from the side lines. I would like to thank the Lavinia World DT Coordinator Anne Temple for being patient with me and for all the encouragement offered by my team members.

As many of you already know about my health, I am leaving due to worsening health conditions. There are no cures for any of my illnesses. While there are a few medications to help some individuals muster through the symptoms, I am unable to tolerate them without further detriment to my body. 

One positive outcome about COVID-19 is that proper attention is FINALLY being called upon by the scientific, medical and political communities for ME/CFS. It is a debilitating syndrome that quashes one's quality of life. I contracted ME/CFS as a result of the Flu Pandemic of 1957. I'm sure many of you recall that pandemic because of the horrible symptoms and world wide deaths. Unfortunately, many people who contracted COVID-19 now are finding themselves suffering from ME/CFS symptoms (generally acquired through a viral infection). You may have heard scientists refer to a "COVID-related symptom "PEM" Post Exertional Malaise". This is where the body loses its ability to create "energy" from food and normal cellular activity. Instead, the body creates cellular waste. Here is the official lay definition for PEM: Post-exertional malaise (PEM) refers to a worsening of ME/CFS symptoms after minimal physical or mental exertion, which can be delayed 24-72 hours or more. PEM is considered to be the hallmark symptom of ME/CFS.
More information can be found here:

A Big Thanks to the designers who make these Challenges Available:

  1. The Holly and Ivy Christmas Challenge #73 Anything Christmas 6/14 (sep post)
  2. World Wide Open DT Challenge #5 AG DT (MY FINAL DT CARD wahhhhh!) 😞 6/15 (sep post)
  3. Merry Little Christmas Challenge #23 (June) AG Christmas 7/6 (sep post)
  4. Classic Design Challenge #6 (June) AG 7/1 (sep post)
  5. A Bit More Time to Craft #117 AG 6/15 (sep post)
  6. Fezziwigs Festive Frolics (June 3) Anything that shares the Christmas Story 6/15 (sep post)
  7. Christmas Craft Creations (May 27) Christmas Using a Die Cut 6/10 (sep post)

Leaving you all with Fairy Love,

Wednesday, May 06, 2020

to my blogging friends

Thanks to all my followers - this is especially for my friends who follow.

After a good 9 months of continued exacerbations which, unfortunately, barely remit before another exacerbation hits, I've been forced with a decision. I need to take a blog break to figure out exactly what my new limitations and abilities are. Some things my fumble fingers were capable of, have declined considerably, and my hand-eye coordination is basically non-existent right now.

I'm only sharing because in the past, I was accused of being "snobbish", or individuals have asked if I was angry with them. Neither is the case - I'm just overwhelmed, trying to do the smallest of things such as brushing my teeth, doing e-mail, loading the dishwasher or even showering. After discussing this with hubby and good friend Anne Temple, I'm going to take a blog break - hopefully only a month or so - as Jack and I figure out where my new plateau is, and which abilities are comfortable abilities, as opposed to no-longer-my-abilities-but-I-am-in-denial-because-I-still-want-them-to-be-abilities.

Thanks for understanding - and I hope you will bear with me til you see my re-emergence!

hugs and kisses,

Wednesday, April 15, 2020

Sweet Purple Bunnies for Spring

Waving Hello!
I hope you are doing well.

Today I have some bunny cards to share from an old, old, virginal Inkadinkadoo image, stamped with Monarch VersaFine Clair and colored with Tombow #133 marker. The leaves are very sparkly with glitter. I've used a different glue to adhere the glitter, so hope to hear back from recipients if it did not work well.

A great feat! They are A2 size.

Thanks to my friend Ana for helping 

to choose colors on these cards before our quarantine!

Clear glitter was applied to the greenery.

Shaded Lilac Distress ink highlights the background.

  • Image: Inkadinkadoo Bunny Retreat (this is the stamp)
  • Dies: Assorted Sue Wilson and Spellbinders dies
  • MS border punch
  • assorted embossing folders
  • assorted Brilliance inks, VersaFine Clair, Distress

Challenges I would like to play in please:

  1. Crafty Friends #133 AG 4/25
  2. Crafty Cardmakers #254 Easter 4/19
  3. Shopping our Stash #418 Happy Spring 4/28
  4. Unicorn Challenge #53 Furry Friends 4/30
  5. Use your Stuff #395 Easter 4/18
  6. All Fun Challenges #6 AG Easter 4/25 (Mon aft)
  7. Classic Design Challenge HAPPY 4TH BIRTHDAY! #4 AG 5/1
  8. Sparkles Challenge #127 Spring is in the Air 5/15
Wishing you love and wellness,


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