My blog is called "Creative Smiles" because my designs are the result of incorporating mistakes. With fumble fingers that drop whatever they are holding - repeatedly, it takes a lot of giggles, smiles and creative patience during my crafting process. xx

Thursday, January 21, 2016

A Special Note of Appreciation

Hello, dear friends.

In the Paper Crafting World, there are several "levels" of expertise, styles, and techniques.
One thing I have discovered, the on-line Community is often "very small" these days.

My heart soars 
when visiting other people's blogs. I thrive seeing their (your) cards and projects.

It's a pleasure
     watching individual styles evolve,
          sharing experiments tried and proven,
               and marveling over what each person most enjoys doing.

But what is very touching~

     is the support the Crafting Community offers to one another.

My heart melts when
   I see pretty finished products.


     I become downright sappy when reading some of the heartfelt comments left on other blogs (as well as my blog).

  • Very talented individuals lavish appreciative and encouraging comments to beginners, inspiring newbies to try even more techniques. 

  • Younger crafters encourage many older crafters, whose methods may be "out of style" and whose abilities may be waning.

  • Skilled individuals share knowledge with those who are struggling.

  • Some bloggers share personal problems or insecurities, fearfully yet openly. I see encouragement to those bloggers in the form of sincere words from others who possibly never know what their kind "morale building" has done for a wounded heart.

Kindness is everywhere, 
even when crafters are stretched out and "maxed out" with their time.

A hearty thank you to:

commenters and blogging friends for taking time to visit blogs and share their heartfelt, sweet wonderful words which bring a little sunshine in the lives of others.

No act of kindness is ever wasted. 
It flows forward in ways we never see.

Thanks for letting me be a bit sentimental.


Wednesday, January 20, 2016

Love is in the Air {Scrapy Land}

A Big Hello to my Sweet Crafting Friends!
Welcome to Scrapy Land Challenge #34!

Theme: "Love Is In The Air" - (Valentine's) PLUS use Die Cut brands sold by Scrapy Land
Up for grabs is a $15 gift card to the Scrapy Land Store, and several badge opportunities, as well. 
We love being inspired by your pretty card submissions to our challenges.
You have until January 31 to submit your pretties!

My 6" square Project uses the following Scrapy Land Products:
QuicKutz Nesting Hearts, and Nesting Scallop Hearts
Crafter's Companion Die'Sire Rose Vine embossing folder
Crafter's Companion Die'Sire Floral Wonder embossing folder
Cuttlebug Swiss Dot embossing Folder (around image)
Memory Box Butterflies: Cascadia Trio, Leavenworth Trio
Spellbinders Grand Square Scallops Nestabilities
Boo Boo Time!

It's fun showing off my boo-boo's LOL
I wanted to use lots of embossed textures on this card, soooooo...
that meant using the dotted embossing folder around the image, but not ON the image!
I carefully fussy cut a mask from THICK CHIP BOARD to match the mice in a cup. 
Then ran the entire thing through my Grand Calibur.
Guess what? Those embossing folders are STRONG! The EF embossed right through chip board!
Next time I'll try cutting a piece of thick plastic.
Therefore, my mice look like they have some sort of pox. 
What can I say? Here is the close-up!

I am in love with the Crafter's Companion Die'Sires Embossalicious embossing folders! BEAUTIFUL! The FLORAL WONDER was used on the white heart layered, and covered with Lime Pearlescent Brilliance ink. I hated layering on top of the green background. The card base is really too pretty to cover up. The VINTAGE ROSE VINE folder is gorgeous! I used a sanding block on the coordinations paper to bring out the texture:

To provide  shaped visual interest, a thin frame was creating using the Nestabilities Scallop Squares. The actual square was used in another project, leaving this pretty frame. It's a great way of using the negative portion of our "left overs" when die cutting.


I recently hit the jackpot! A drawer of forgotten lace holders was rediscovered.
These are laces from the 1940s, 50s and 60s, formerly belonging to my Great Aunt Agnes.
How surprising to discover one of the laces was pale yellow with blue detailing for my second card!

Please notice that these mice have not been afflicted with the pox in this card:
The stamp set includes the sentiment.
The Nesting Hearts contains 11 dies, and the scallop hearts has five dies.

Now it's your turn to share your projects with us!

Scrapy Land Products:

Other Products:
  • Paper: SU designer paper, SU green CS, SU pink CS, Express-it White, DCWV Glittered paper
  • INK: lemonade distress, Brilliance Lime Pearescent
  • Yellow Heart Brad, Lace (on both cards), pink prima flowers, Copic Markers
  • MS lace heart edge punch
  • Images: Stamping Bella "Little Things"
Challenges I'd like to play in please!
  1. 2 Creative Chicks (Jan #6) "Anything Goes" 2/1
  2. Dies R Us #41 "Stitching" (zigzag stitch around frame Blue and Yellow card) 1/28
  3. Crafty Friends Challenge #23 "Anything Goes" 1/29
  4. Let's Color Linky Party #2 "Anything Goes option use pink" 1/29 (see tab top of blog)
  5. Crafting From the Heart #95 "Anything Goes" 1/24
  6. Hiding in my Craft Room #234 "Embossing" (used 3 different embossing folders listed under the SL Products) 1/24
  7. Lil Patch of Crafty Friends #26 "Anything Goes" 2/5
  8. Craft Your Passion #295 "Anything Goes" 1/24
  9. Love to Scrap! #70 "Anything Goes" 2/1
  10. Simon Says Wednesday Challenges (Jan 20) "Create With Critters" Stamping Bella's Mice 1/26 (sep post)

Stamping Hugs,

Wednesday, January 06, 2016

Germini Ursa by Sue Wilson {Scrapy Land}

Greetings, Sweet Crafty Friends!
Welcome to Scrapy Land Challenge #33!

Theme: Anything Goes Using Die Cut brands sold by Scrapy Land
Up for grabs is a $15 gift card to the Scrapy Land Store, and several badge opportunities, as well. 
We love being inspired by your pretty cards submitted to our challenges.
You have until January 17 to submit your pretties!

Scrapy Land Products Used:

My card base and the embossed layer on top are both ivory. The coloring is accomplished with inks. On the base, lighter on top, and darker on the bottom. On the embossed panel, darker on top, and lighter on the bottom, to create an interesting gradience. 

Inking will produce a reverse gradient effect - 
The Base: light on top, darker on the bottom.
The Top Panel: Dark on top and edges, light (no ink) on the bottom die cut portion,
shown below:

Make each card slightly different:

Scrapy Land Products Used:
Other Products:
  • Sparkle N Sprinkle: Cloud Nine Velvet Glitter, Detail Gold Embossing Powder.
  • Ivory, White Cardstock
  • Floral Embossing Folder
  • Ribbon, Lace, Trim
  • Sentiment: Stampin' Up!
Challenges I'd like to play in please!

A Snow Flake's Promise #13 Christmas Theme 1/11
Dream Valley Challenges #122 Christmas 1/15
Shopping Our Stash Weekly #233 Monochromatic (ivory/gold)

                                    Stamping Hugs,

Tuesday, January 05, 2016

Happy Birthday, Chickie!

Hello, sweet friends!
Today I'm sharing a card for a friend.
So happy to use this darling Bugaboo image won in a challenge recently:
Bugaboo's Chickzbirthday image

Isn't she so cute? I added a little extra confetti around the sentiment and image.

Colored with Copic Markers and "distressed" with sparkly Starfire glitter.
I used this sketch by Cheerful Sketches Challenge
(Isn't that a great name for a Challenge Blog?)

Products Used:

  • Scrapy Land Sue Wilson Pierced Rectangles
  • Scrapy Land Spellbinders Diamondessence Circles, Fantastic Flourish One (cut up - from my virgin stash)
  • Copic Markers
  • Bugaboo's Chickzbirthday image (from my virgin stash LOL)
  • Martha Stewart's Doily Lace Trim Deep Edge (from my virgin stash)
  • Cuttlebug Swiss Dot embossing folder
  • Sparkle N Sprinkle Starfire Ultrafine Glitter
  • Dotted Grosgrain Ribbon, SU designer paper, SU aqua paper, white

Challenges I'd like to play in please:

  1. Cheerful Sketches Challenge (Jan 1) Use Sketch Shown Above 2/28
  2. Catch The Bug Challenges (Jan 2) Anything Goes! 1/8
  3. Craft Your Passion Challenges #293 Anything Goes! 1/11
  4. Our Crafty Corner #5 Anything Goes 1/31
  5. Scrapbook Stamp Society Challenges #82 Anything Goes 1/17
  6. Dragonfly Journeys #38 Birthday Time! 1/11
  7. Glitter N Sparkle Challenge #169 Anything Goes 1/10
  8. Lil Patch of Crafty Friends #25 Anything Goes 1/16
  9. Quirky Crafts Challenges #1 Let's Celebrate! 1/28
  10. Crafting from the Heart #93 Anything Goes 1/10
  11. Ching-Chou Kuik Challenge (Jan.) Use Something New (new digi image, new Flourish die cut, new MS Lace Trim Deep Edge punch). 

Thanks for stopping by today!
Stamping Hugs,

Friday, January 01, 2016

Dancing Squirrel {Crafts Galore Encore}

Happy New Year!

And Welcome to my first blog post as a Crafts Galore Encore Challenge DT member! 
May 2016 be the best Year ever for my sweet crafting buddies and your families.
We are experiencing our warmest Winter ever, here in Central Florida.
Very strange to have the air conditioner whirring when so many others are contending with slush and ice! Still, no complaints...

(note to my blogger buddies: apologies for being absent from commenting. I am seriously ill and still not able to do much on line - hope to catch up soon)

The Rules to the Challenge are so easy! Just create your project (using any crafting medium) according to this month's theme with up to 3 entries, and link your blog posts directly to the linky on the CGE Challenge site! That's it! This month's challenge is easy-peasy - ANYTHING GOES.

Our fun, imaginative sponsor this month is Fabrika Fantasy
I'm playing with Fabrika Fantasy's silly and darling Dancing Squirrel which  includes FIVE files!
  • a colored image in both JPG and PNG formats, 
  • a black and white image in both JPG and PNG formats, 
  • and a bonus colored image including background in JPG format - 
  • all for $3.00!

After coloring with Copic Markers, I added several of the daisies from Dancing Squirrel's crown so that it is raining flowers as she dances! This card measures 5.5" x 7.5".

In 2015, I vowed to use "old stash" on each of my cards, and largely, I succeeded. This year, I want do even more! Remember a decade ago when Michaels (and other Big Box Stores) carried all those cute decorative buttons? My dragonfly buttons were clamoring to play with Dancing Squirrel. Made of Resin, they are coated withmSNS Starfire Glitter.



Looking forward to seeing your masterpieces this month at Crafts Galore Encore Challenge!

Challenges I'd like to play in pretty please:
  1. Creative Card Crew - #103 Anything Goes 01/12
  2. Tuesday Throwdown - #274 Anything Goes 1/4
  3. Crafting from the Heart - #92 Anything Goes 1/2
  4. Love to Scrap - #68 Anything Goes 1/2
  5. Crafty Creations Challenges #305 Anything Goes 1/4
  6. Inspiration Destination Challenges #66 Anything Goes 1/4
  7. C.R.A.F.T #344 "Anything Goes" 1/5
  8. CCC Digi Creations #40 Anything Goes 1/13
  9. Petal Lu (Jan 1) Anything Goes 1/12
  10. Sisters of the Craft - (Jan) Anything Goes 2/1
Stamping Hugs,