Thursday, July 31, 2008

SCS Challenge: Ways to Use It - Scraps!

Participated in the Splitcoaststampers "Ways to Use It" challenge today: "Scrap It!" The challenge was to make a card using scraps. Well, since my scraps are organized into Sterlite clear drawers by color, this was very fun and easy! I made 17 Christmas cards like the one I'm posting, and a few more that are not quite finished (I often make cards part way, and then finish them at another time!). Fun stuff, and a little Christmas in July!

For supplies used, visit my card on SCS:

Thanks for reading!
Katie B. :)

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

SCS - Card Sketch Challenge 187... & my creations...

Happy Wednesday!

Yay for Card Sketches and all of the INSPIRATION they provide at SplitCoastStampers (SCS)! Here is a link to today's challenge/sketch:
Here is the actual sketch:

And here are my creations that I posted this morning:

This one is very traditional, very soft and subtle. Pretty colors. (And yay for me - I used some older decorative paper - it's so easy to use the new stuff, but I have to encourage myself to use up the old stuff as well - and make it look just as good as the new!)

This one incorporates my ultimate favorite decorative paper - KI Memories - - check it out! :) I had fun adding the ribbon, flowers, and gemstones (got those from Hobby Lobby 50% off - I love jewels!!)

BLOG CANDY!!! This is the second to last day (through the end of July) that you can leave a comment to have a chance to win my first EVER blog candy giveaway! (Don't know yet which goodies from my studio that I'll choose - but it'll be something fun in yummy colors!) Talk to me... :)

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

sister/sister date...

Lil' sis and I spent Monday at Six Flags. It was great to have some QT with her. We floated around the lazy river and swam in the wave pool at Hurricane Harbor, then enjoyed some milder rides, a "Show Stoppin'" dance and singing show, an IMAX Planet Earth quickie (hence the fashionable glasses!), and a couple of rides down the Roaring Rapids - I wish I would have taken a picture of us sopping wet... we squished our way out of the park at closing and didn't get home until 1:30 am - crazy, fun day!!
katie b. :)

Monday, July 28, 2008

Show 'n' Tell - Some of my favorite cards...

I figured I'd share a few of my favorite cards I've created... another time, I'm sure I'll share ones from friends I've found on the web, but I'll start with, hmmm.... me! :) (not to be vain or self-centered or anything...)

Supplies: K&Company (decorative cut outs & paper), jumbo eyelets, Target $1 ribbon, DCWV cardstock

Supplies: Offray organza ribbon, KI memories DP, Creative Imaginations alphabet stickers (3D glossy), cardstock?

Supplies: gems, KI Memories DP, Making Memories clear baubbles, Hobby Lobby alphabet stickers (cheap, sorry, don't know which brand), DCWV cardstock

Supplies: Stampin' Up! alphabet letters (retired), white Signo gel pen (Stampin' Up!), silver plastic washer beads (Hobby Lobby), KI Memories DP and shimmer paper, DCWV cardstock, markers , Crystal Effects glaze (Stampin' Up!), ribbon scrap, colored staple (Making Memories)

Supplies: DP - KI Memories (stripes) & ??, Cat sticker - one of those multi-rolls sticker collections, metal tag - JoAnn embellishments, sentiment stamp - Michaels $1 bin, gold gel pen, scrabble letters paper - JoAnn (brand? sorry)

Have a great day! Create something... :)
Katie B.

Sunday, July 27, 2008

Homemade Light Box!

A few musings about the ever-so-slow process of learning photography skills...

So, last August I bought this brand, spankin' new, top of the line digital camera. (I'll have to go look at it to tell you what brand because I am that new to this foreign world of photography! Wait! I just thought of it... Olympus! There ya go). It claimed to be indestructible, and besides a battery that doesn't last near long enough, it is!

*You can drop it from up to 6 ft (perfect, I'm 5'11"!)
*You can drop it up to like 15 feet of water... poolside, no problem! deep end, sure thang!
*You can leave it in COLD weather (like -20 degrees Fahrenheit) - in my car in the winter overnight, no worries!
*You can crush it up to about 300 pounds... and thank God, even though I need to get more fit and lose some weight, I don't weight that much - so I can sit or step on it! (and so can my poppa!)

I bought the extended warranty from Best Buy, figuring that by the time the warranty was off, I'd be ready for a new camera anyways. I think I had the 3 or 4 year warranty... number details are not my strongest suite (if you haven't figured that out by now!)

So, anyways, back to this light box thing. I googled "how to make your own light box" and clicked around a bit. This was the main websites that I used:

(I would love that light cube and all of the accessories, but I used this to figure out how I could make my own)

My handmade table top light box (for now):

*Rubbermaid Bin (plus a couple more to prop things to the right height)
*2 Gooseneck multi light floor lamps (the kind with white covers and like 5 different bulbs
*Scrapbooking paper (12 x 12) - I stuck with just one tan & white baroque motif, but have intentions to play around in the future)
*A variety of silk flowers and found nature objects (like a smooth, polished rock from Lake Michigan - thanks to my scavenger Mom! <3)
*Cool vases (mine were from WalMart and Gordman's clearance section)
*Double stick tape (the answer to life's little problems - too little for duct tape at least!)
*Gorilla camera tripod (like $20 or so at Best Buy - very cool - you can wrap it around stuff to hold your camera suspended!)
*My trusty, unbreakable Olympus digital camera
*Ultra cool handmade jewelry - which is the whole reason I am learning how to do this!!

The best pictures were taken when I had some natural light coming through the windows. I also used my macro (or "flower" feature) with a little S1 feature on it (no idea what that means - think I'd read the owner's manual to my camera? Nah! I'll punt for now! I just make it a priority to read my owner's manual to life - the Bible - otherwise, I'd rather figure it out myself than read it in a manual - not the most efficient, but for my brain, sometimes, the most effective!)

I took a few pictures of each, and then popped the memory card into my computer and used Microsoft Office Picture Manager to resize my photos to "web - large" documents, auto corrected them (and if I didn't like the way that looked, adjusted brightness and contrast manually), cropped them and saved them. I figure it takes me just over 60 seconds to edit each picture, so not too bad (but could be faster always!). Then the long process of naming them - now that I'm selling them on Etsy, they need catchy, creative names. I'm feeling so corny... "Toes in the Sand" - goodness... who wants to wear a necklace with the word "Toes" in the title? Well, I enjoyed wearing it to a shower Saturday, so I suppose I didn't mind, but others might! :P

I have a ways to go before I would consider myself a true photographer, but the goal right now is to somehow end up with appealing photographs of my creations - show off how yummy the colors and designs are in real life... this'll do. :)

Also, since my first attempt at photographing my stuff, I have found a few more useful websites:

Well, I need some sleep. Enjoy life. Thanks for reading my stuff...

BTW, post a comment to be entered for blog candy for July yet - anyone out there reading this? :)

Saturday, July 26, 2008

SCS Challenge: Website Inspiration

Morning to the proud and few who read my blog... :) (still figuring out if anyone actually does!)

(Like I said in my previous post - if you are one of those cyberfriends - or real life ones - who actually stumbled upon my blog, leave a comment anytime before the end of the month and I will do a drawing for blog candy - some bit of goodies that I have created)

I have little time before wedding shower and Milwaukee today, but wanted to share a card I made in, no kidding, FIVE minutes. Yep, you read it correctly, 5 minutes! I love whipping out cards, so I've been known to make a batch of 8-10 in an hour, but never one design finished in less than 5 minutes. New record. I really appreciate the ones that have so many details and take 30-60 minutes, but sometimes it's nice to have quick and easy ones on hand, too.

I love the Splitcoaststampers website ( - if you are a rubberstamping or scrapbooking enthusiast and have never been there, it's everything you never knew you always wanted!) and today's challenge was to use a website (layout, header, footer, sidebar, etc) for inspiration. I checked through my bookmarks (favorites folder for all of you non-Vista users) in a folder I keep titled "Inspiration" - comes in handy for when I see something I know will inspire me later!). is one of my wishlist sites... I would love just about EVERYTHING they make to add to my studio, but for today, I was inspired by their header/title. So simple, so clean, stylish, perfect.

I have a pack of cards from the dollar section at Target (ooohhh, I heard they just brought in classroom stuff and I've purposely not gone in awhile, cuz dollar stuff adds up quickly and it's bad for my budget - or lack, thereof!) from "All in the Cards" - blue baroque looking things - which I had bought thinking I would embellish them and make a gift set for someone - little money, lot of love - perfect anytime gift for a friend! Maybe also for my blog candy... :) (back to seeing if anyone actually reads this!)

Anyways, I used one of those cards, picked out some ribbon from my ribbon wall (I'll show you pics another day - really great, cheap way to store ribbon - WalMart curtain rods, brackets, wa-laa! Less than $2 a row!) - This ribbon wall has really kept me inspired... it's so quick and easy to find the perfect match for a project and the ribbon colors and designs themselves are enough to get me inspired for a card! I adhered the ribbon to the card with my absolute favorite adhesive (although I regularly use at least a dozen different kinds) - my "Duck" permanent tape runner, and then used my Scotch clear glue 2-way applicator and a blue jewel, and then stamped the sentiment with my Studio G $1 stamp from Michaels (BTW, Milwaukee = trip to Michaels - yay!!) in timber brown Staz On ink - new pad, though, so super inky!, smeared just a little. As an after thought, next card I would stamp the sentiment, then glue the skinny blue ribbon right where I wanted it. And ta-da! Done in 5 minutes.

I then used a piece of blue tissue paper (still out from wrapping shower gifts), draped it loosely over my laptop, and shot the photo right here. Convenient! Not as cool looking as my new handmade lightbox (which I'll show in a different post), but definitely served the purpose of quick and easy. I resized and touched up the photo just a tad and posted... less than 10 minutes total. So cool.

And now I am off to get ready for today's baby shower, tomorrow Milwaukee's showers, then sleepover at Grandma's with a few relatives, and then Six Flags with lil' sis Monday (she earned free tix from her reading program - fun!)...

Happy day to you!
Katie B. :)

Thursday, July 24, 2008

latest & greatest (hehe) on Etsy!

Well, today was a milestone. I learned a bit more about still life photography, how to create my own banner and avatar for my new online shop, and uploaded 7 new items to my NEW Etsy store! I have a slight headache from all of the brain cells that are still a'sizzlin... :P

Check it out!

Here are some sneak previews...

I'm off to photograph more of my stuff...

If there is anyone out there actually reading this :)
make a comment and I will do some blog candy for July (and my hunch is that you will have a HIGH chance of winning it!!) :)