Thursday, January 6, 2011

New Year, Same Holidays

Hope your personal version of 2011 is off to a great start. Having worked in food service retail for 10 years now, I know a thing or two about January.

1) Everyone tries in some way to do better in the new year. They diet, they curb their spending, they make resolutions. I love a fresh start as much as anyone.

2) Retailers want to skip January and steer people right toward The Next Big Thing, which, obviously, is Valentine's Day. At Starbucks, we have Valentine's mugs, tumblers, bears, and red velvet cupcakes on display already. Yes, it's only Jan. 6.

Since there is something to be said for planning ahead, and if you can't beat 'em you might as well join 'em, here are two cards I made for Valentine's Day. Each uses Love You Much, a very diverse set that coordinates with the Heart-to-Heart Punch.

The first card came together after a conversation with my ex-pat friend Elisabeth. We were discussing how to create the look of patterned paper using stamps, and how you can cut a window in a card and have a cool look that still a single layer card. I started by stamping the "love" image INSIDE the 4.25" square Whisper White card base with Black Stazon ink. I knew I wanted to "fill" the vase with "water" using Marina Mist, an Aqua Painter, a Versamarker, and Clear Stampin' Emboss Powder. Using Stazon meant that the image wouldn't bleed. I applied the MM ink with the Aqua Painter. I colored the area with Versamarker and heat embossed it with the clear EP. Voila--the look of water in the "V" vase!

I used a Real Red flower button from the Bold Brights Designer Buttons pack and added a little silver cord bow with a mini glue dot. Then I decided to create the look of a crystal vase by adhering Dazzling Diamonds Glitter with Tombow Multi-purpose Adhesive. Valentine's Day is synonymous with bling, dontcha know. Click on the image to see it up-close and get the full effect.

I used the heart image to stamp around the window I'd created, then colored parts of the hearts with my Basic Black Stampin' Write Marker (100082). It created exactly the look I was going for!

The second card is a takeoff of the first. I had stamped the Love image in the center of the card base, but I wanted some dimension. I had the window I'd cut out of the first card available, so I adhered it temporarily and stamped the Hugs and Kisses image in each corner. Then I traced around the square with the fine tip of my marker.

After I removed it, I realized that I liked the idea of a slightly raised image, so I restamped the Love image in the middle. I used the Small Heart Punch on a scrap of Real Red card stock and covered over the original flower image. I stamped another of the H&K image, cut it out, and colored it with just enough red to provide some more accent color. A few Stampin' Dimensionals, and the card was complete. Or do you think the Love needs to be colored black?

Are you in the mood for love now? I am. One of my New Year's resolutions is to be present, in the moment. I'm a future-oriented thinker, so I miss moments because I'm preoccupied with what's coming. And Valentine's Day is coming, folks. Just not today. Still, make it a point to tell someone that you love them today. You may not have tomorrow like you think you do.


Lanie said...

I love these cards and love the use of the button! :)

Tara said...

Cute cards! I had to laugh at your comment - I am assuming you work at SBux as well? I do and was just commenting on the fact that our Valentine's stuff was out too!

gitz said...

aren't you smart working ahead... love love love the first one. so adorable!