Wednesday, 30 October 2019

Art With Heart “Heart of Christmas 2019” - Week 11

So Many Stars & Bubble Technique

Welcome to Valley Inspirations with Andrea to see another Christmas card for the Art With Heart Team's Heart of Christmas 2019 Blog Hop for Week 11.  I really appreciate you dropping in to check out my blog. I hope you are enjoying this week's blog hop. My fellow demonstrators are soooo talented.

This week I started designing my card by selecting a background that I had prepared a few weeks ago using the Bubble Technique. Back in Week 8 of the Heart of Christmas 2019 Blog Hop I experimented with the Bubble technique (which was such fun) and created a few backgrounds. I made a card using one of the backgrounds for Week 8's Blog Hop which you can see by scrolling down a little way on my Blog.

This background was created by blowing bubbles in soapy water that also contained some drops of Stampin Up's water based Re-inkers. There were 4 layers of bubbles - Seaside Spray, Pacific Point, Rococo Rose and Night of Navy.  While the watercolour paper was still damp from the bubbles, I embossed it with the Swirls and Curls Embossing folder.

Looking at this background, it communicated "a sky" and so again I went to the So Many Stars bundle. This is such a gorgeous stamp set and dies, which includes a range of stitched star dies in different sizes, a swirly group of stars and some filigree stars. I started playing with the products and then realised that my developing design had been influenced by a card displayed in Stampin' Up's quarterly magazine and one by the talented Katherine Mangelsdorf.  It's amazing how one can be influenced by things we have loved and are tucked somewhere in our brain.  Here's my card:

Bubble technique, Stitched stars, Andrea Sargent, Christmas, Stampin Up, Heart of Christmas 2019, Art with Heart, So Many Stars

To complement the So Many Stars bundle, Stampin' Up also released Mercury Glass Designer Acetate. It is amazing! One of the designs looks like splatters of mercury have been removed and you can see whatever is behind this acetate in those areas. This design complemented the effects of the bubble technique on the background.  I die cut a number of stars out of different colours of cardstock as well as silver foil cardstock and one from the designer acetate. A little stamping was added to the whisper white star and both the whisper white and balmy blue stars were sprayed with a touch of Frost White Shimmer paint mixed with rubbing alcohol. It was hard to capture the glimmer effect in the photos, but is delightful when it shimmers in the sun.

Bubble technique, Stitched stars, Andrea Sargent, Christmas, Stampin Up, Heart of Christmas 2019, Art with Heart, So Many Stars

When cutting out stars, as well as in mounting the card front, I played with different colours, including the colours used in creating the background. It seems that in creating the background the colours visually blended into different hues, so I couldn't go to the cardstock that matched the individual ink colours. I am fascinated with the interplay of colours and it was interesting to experiment with which colours would be best for the layered stars. I ended up using Balmy Blue cardstock, which was not a colour used in creating the background. You may also notice a very, very fine layer of Night of Navy under the embossed background. I originally had a wider mount but then cut down the Night of Navy so it was less dominant.

Bubble technique, Stitched stars, Andrea Sargent, Christmas, Stampin Up, Heart of Christmas 2019, Art with Heart, So Many Stars

In this close up you have clearer look at the layered stars as well as the background effect.  It's also easier to see further swirls made with Silver Metallic Thread. The layered star was finished off with a silver Faceted Gem. I love using the wide range of Stampin' Up products that so delightfully coordinate with each other. Their coordination certainly makes it easier to create.

The card inner used a greeting from the So Many Stars stamp set and a grouping of stars (which was stamped off first to ensure it was lighter than the greeting). Hmm, what do you call a grouping of stars - as there are only 5 stars in this stamp it can't be a galaxy???

Bubble technique, Stitched stars, Andrea Sargent, Christmas, Stampin Up, Heart of Christmas 2019, Art with Heart, So Many Stars

Tina Gillespie, a very special person and colleague, is hosting the Heart of Christmas 2019 blog hop this week. To check out the Art with Heart team’s festive creations you can visit the amazing Tina Gillespie’s blog. She has links to all of this week's blog hoppers where you will find a wealth of inspiration.

Thanks for dropping by to check out my blog. I so appreciate you spending time with me. I have loved sharing with you. 💕🐾

Thursday, 24 October 2019


Subtle 3D Embossing folder.

Thanks for dropping by. Welcome to another Art with Heart Blog Hop. I hope you are enjoying hopping along with this October 2019 Blog Hop.

This month we are featuring Stampin' Up's! versatile range of Embossing Folders. There are new Embossing Folders available in every Stampin' Up! catalogue. They provide an inexpensive way of adding WOW! to your projects. Currently there are 24 different Embossing Folders in the Stampin' Up range.

Tonight we plan on showing you lots of ideas on how to use these folders.

I really love using embossing folders on my projects and one of my favourites is  the Subtle 3D Embossing folder as it adds texture and character but in an oh so subtle way (which is probably why it has been given the name). The Subtle embossing folder allows blank spaces on a project without it seeming plain or boring. It is this embossing folder that I am using tonight. Here is my card.

I have used the Subtle 3D embossing on the Whisper White card front. The lace effect at the bottom of the card front was cut using the Delicate Lace dies, with a panel of Seaside Spray card stock providing contrast to show the die cut lacy effect.

The "Thinking of You" greeting came from the Good Morning Magnolia stamp bundle and was stamped in Night of Navy ink. The banner for the greeting came from the Frosted Bouquet dies.

The two close-ups show the background effect of the Subtle embossing folder as well as some of the floral and butterfly details around the greeting. The flowers, leaves and swirls were cut out of Seaside Spray, Soft Sea Foam and Silver foil cardstock using the Lovely Flowers dies and the Floral Bouquet dies. 

The butterfly was stamped on vellum with Seaside Spray ink using butterflies from the Butterfly Gala stamp set. Vellum takes a little longer to dry before the butterflies were cut out using the Butterfly Duet punch. Then the two butterflies were layered together and a small Basic Pearl Jewel added a finishing touch to the butterfly. 

As the "Thinking of You" greeting could be used for a number of different occasions, a coordinating greeting wasn't added inside the card. A small magnolia bud from the Magnolia Blooms stamp set added a simple touch to to the card inner.

Thanks for dropping by and taking time to check out my blog. I've loved sharing with you 💕🐾

There is more creative inspiration in this Art With Heart Blog Hop. The talented Sujatha Harding is next. Click here to visit her blog.  

If you find a broken link or have come to this blog hop from a different entry point, you can view all the participants below by clicking on their names and the link will take you to their blog:

Wednesday, 23 October 2019

AWHT Heart of Christmas 2019 - Week 10

Thanks for dropping by. This week my Christmas card for the Heart of Christmas 2019 Blog Hop uses one of the designs in Stampin' Up's beautiful Brightly Gleaming Speciality Designer Series Paper.

This year's Brightly Gleaming Speciality Designer Series Paper (DSP) is just delightful. The seasonal images and geometric designs (which could be used for a range of purposes) have copper foil accents on one side of the paper. Stampin' Up's colours - Mossy Meadow, Night of Navy, Pretty Peacock and Very Vanilla are so gorgeous when combined with copper foil. I just love, love, love this DSP, and so couldn't resist featuring it in this week's card.

Before I further introduce my card, I need to apologise for the quality of the photos in this week's blog. I have tried to improve them, but disappointedly, my efforts have had the reverse effect. I will seek advice during the week on how I can improve.  I sincerely ask for your patience this week.

Andrea Sargent, Stampin Up, Brightly Gleaming DSP, Christmas, Heart of Christmas

Andrea Sargent, Stampin Up, Brightly Gleaming DSP, Christmas, Heart of ChristmasOne of the DSP designs is made up of many, many gorgeous Christmas baubles and stars. I fussy cut many of the baubles and stars and then formed some of the baubles into a larger bauble that was framed by circles cut out of very vanilla and copper foil cardstock using the larger of the Layering Circles dies. The fussy cut stars were sprinkled around. The card front, that is both the very vanilla and copper foil cardstocks were embossed with a Subtle Embossing folder and the very vanilla cardstock was lightly sprayed with Frost White Shimmer Paint mixed with rubbing alcohol.  Star Designer Elements have been added inside the bauble and on either side of the greeting and a bow and string was made from Copper Trim. The greeting was stamped in the luscious Celestial Copper Metallic ink and came from the Shine Bright stamp set.

Here is a close up of the card's bauble.

I so love adding some matching design elements in the card centre. I included a fussy cut bauble and some stars, plus a thin strip of copper foil. The inside greeting came from the Light & Peace stamp set.

The wonderful Claire Daly is hosting the Heart of Christmas 2019 blog hop this week – to check out the team’s festive creations you can visit Claire’s page by clicking here. She has the links to all this week's blog hoppers where you will find a heap of inspiration.

Thanks for dropping by and taking time to check out my blog. I've loved sharing with you 💕🐾

Wednesday, 16 October 2019


So glad you are visiting Valley Inspirations on this, the second time I've been a part of the Art with Heart Team "Heart of Christmas 2019" blog hop. I appreciate you taking the time to check out my blog.

Heart of Christmas 2019

Tidings All Around

Christmas is such a special time of year. When I think of Christmas, one of the things that comes to mind is a beautiful Wreath hanging on the front door.  As I was designing tonight's card using Stampin' Up's Tidings All Around bundle, which focusses on a Christmas wreath, I pondered its symbolism.  After a little Googling, I believe that the wreath symbolises eternity because its circular shape has no beginning and no end. From a Christian perspective it represents an unending circle of life, and the evergreen aspect, most frequently used in making wreathes, symbolises growth and everlasting life. I'm someone who likes to understand the background of something - so I find this interesting.  Enough musing, now to the Chrissy card.

This week's card combines a number of styles and products that I warm my heart.  One of the styles I love to play with is a clean, uncluttered look.  I also enjoy using embossing folders to give interest with a tone on tone subtle effect; as well as add touches of sparkle and perhaps some ribbon. And this year, Stampin' Up's Brightly Gleaming Speciality Designer Series Paper (DSP) for Christmas is so sumptuous - a strip of one of the designs has been included. Here is my card:

Andrea Sargent, Stampin Up, Holiday Catalogue 2019, Tidings all around, All-around Wreath, Celestial Copper, Brightly Gleaming

The Tidings All Around stamp set and the matching All-Around Wreath dies provide a delightful wreath and a range of greetings.   The wreath (stamped in Pretty Peacock) provides a gorgeous base which can be decorated. I've added gorgeous little sprigs and twigs from the set of dies that have been cut from copper foil card stock and tied together with copper trim. Rhinestones, coloured with a bronze Blends to give them a copper tinge, were placed around the wreath in a number of groupings of 3 to add a little Christmas sparkle.  The Blends are Stampin' Up's alcohol markers.  (Its a pity that my photos don't pick up the sparkle that shimmer when light catches them. Bye the way, I hope you will see an improvement in my photos over time - I'm quite a novice in photography and am on a steep learning curve. Please be patient.)

I also used the copper trim to blend the upper piece of whisper white card stock (that was embossed with the Subtle embossing folder) and the decadent Brightly Gleaming Speciality DSP.  I so love the combination of copper and Pretty Peacock (a rich deep blue/green - the more I use this colour, the more I love it).  Carrying the copper theme across the card, the greeting was stamped in the new Delicata metallic ink, Celestial Copper - its such a gorgeous ink (yes, I love it too).

I like to add some design elements from the front of the card to the card inner and the envelope. This week a thin strip of matching DSP and a coordinating spray of leaves and twigs from the stamp set decorate the inner and this same spray also has been stamped on the envelope in Pretty Peacock ink. A snippet of the envelope can be seen in the first photo, above.  This card inner is reminiscent of my early years, (yes it was a loooong time ago) when the special and expensive cards usually had a seperate and finer paper as the inner. I've used a good quality printer paper (sometimes I use vellum, depending on the style I am wanting to communicate).

The special Claire Daly is back hosting the Heart of Christmas 2019 blog hop this week – to check out the team’s festive creations you can visit Claire’s page by clicking here. She has the links to all this week's blog hoppers where you will find lots of inspiration.

Thanks for dropping by. I've loved sharing with you. 💕🐾

Wednesday, 9 October 2019

So Many Stars & Bubble Technique

Hi, thanks for checking out my blog and my contribution to the Art with Heart Team “Heart of Christmas 2019’ blog hop. This is my first time being part of this blog hop - or any blog hop for that matter.  Here we go ...

Heart of Christmas 2019 - Week 8

Stars, and especially the star followed by the Wise Men, are a special part of Christmas. For this week’s blog hop I chose to feature Stampin Up’s “So Many Stars” bundle. The images in the stamp set and “Stitched Stars” dies are gorgeous and there is so much potential. Also, I recently saw someone prepare a background using the bubble technique and thought it would be great to give it a try to create a Sky background. Here is the card I created:

I did find inspiration from a card shown in the current Stampin' Up “Holiday Catalogue” (pg 3), but changed the background technique as well as various colours, card stock, greetings and accessories.

Creating the background using bubbles was so much fun. I felt I was connecting with my inner child as I blew bubbles from soapy water coloured with our ink refills and then scooped the bubbles on to whisper white card stock. Watching the bubbles disappear and leave colour where the bubbles had been was amazing - I can find joy in all sorts of crafty places. No background will be the same as another. I used Seaside Spray, Pacific Point and Night Of Navy with some Rococo Rose as the colours for my Sky background. Once the background had dried thoroughly, I stamped tiny stars over the background in Versamark and then sprinkled it with Shimmer White emboss powder. Heat setting the emboss powder is another process that gives me a buzz. I love watching the dry powder turn into shiny raised lines and seeing this powder turn shimmery white on the bubble background was certainly a buzz.

Also, I made this background at the same time. It’s lighter and shows more of the Rococo Rose. Before the paper had fully dried I embossed it with a different form of embossing that used the “Swirls & Curls” embossing folder which embedded a swirly design across the background.

Inside the card I stamped a different greeting and a few stars.

There are lovely cards in this week’s Heart of Christmas 2019 blog hop. Click here to head to Tina Gillespie’s blog. Her blog has links to all the other blog hoppers.

Thanks for dropping by.

Saturday, 5 October 2019

Brightly Gleaming

Christmas Preparations 

Yes, Christmas is coming - and it's much closer than you think. There is about 11 weeks till the special day. Oh dear, how quickly the year is going.

As a paper crafter, one needs to start preparing early for Christmas - making cards to share blessing and love with family and friends.  I thought I would share some of my cards with you over the coming weeks.  I had been hoping to participate in the Art with Heart team “Heart of Christmas 2019” blog hop. However, as a blog hopping novice, I haven't worked out all the steps as yet and have had a number of false starts (eg loosing a few drafts of this post - without even trying). Let's hope I'll be in the blog hop next week. Keep an eye out.

This card is using the gorgeous Brightly Gleaming suite by Stampin Up which can be found in their current 2019 Holiday Catalogue on pigs 30 - 32. To make this card, I used the Christmas Gleaming stamp set, the Gleaming Ornaments punch pack, the Brightly Gleaming Specialty Designer Series Paper and the new Delicata Celestial Copper ink. These items were complimented with a greeting from the "Merry Christmas To All" stamp set, a strip of copper foil and Very Vanilla cardstock that are all contained in the 2019 - 2020 Annual Catalogue.

The lovely Claire Daly hosted the Heart of Christmas 2019 blog hop this week – to check out the team’s creations for this week you can visit Claire’s page by clicking here. 

I'll be back next week on Wednesday evening with another card creation to share. Have a great week.

Art With Heart Colour Creations Showcase - #5 Blushing Bride

Blushing Bride and Prized Peony Hello. Welcome to Valley Inspirations with Andrea and the 5th Colour Creations Showcase by members of the ...