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Designer Day with Latisha Yoast

Hello there!  My friend Emily who is the owner of this fine blog, invited me to be a guest with her today.  How fun is that!  Let me introduce myself, my name is Latisha Yoast.  I have many hobbies, but my main squeeze is Paper Crafting.  

As I was brainstorming what kind of project to share, I was right in the middle of a project where I was making custom gift gards for my children’s teachers.  So I thought, “yes!” gift cards, something we all give as gifts.  Not to mention making a gift card takes very few materials. 
The most important tool you will need to create a gift card, is some kind of scoring tool with a ruler.  I used a Scor-buddy, but any kind of scoring tool will work. Miss Martha Stewart makes a fine one as well, if you are new to Paper Crafting, switch the orange blade out of your Fiskars cutting machine, and insert the black one, this is a scoring blade.  Or, simply use a ruler and bone folder. 

The second important thing you will need is a very strong double sided adhesive.  I use Scrapbook Adhesives by 3L Crafty Power Tape, when I need something strong and lasting.

When I create a gift card, I always start with a base.  I cut a piece of cardstock or pattern paper to a 4 ¼ by 6 ¾ inches template.  I score at 1 ½ inches, and then again at 4 ½ inches.  Once you fold the scored flaps in, on the smaller inside flap (where your gift card will be placed) place Scrapbook Adhesives by 3L Crafty Power Tape on the outer edges.  I prefer this adhesive because it has a ¼ width, which works perfectly for this kind of project.  Below is a template for you to follow, and to have a visual on which way to score.
Once the scoring & adhere the smaller flap is adhered down, the fun begins.  You get to decorate, stamp & embellish the custom gift card.

I have three different examples to show you today.  Sweet 16, Wedding and a Teacher Gift Card.

I encourage all of you to try to make a gift card for yourself.  They are extremely easy to make, and take very few materials to make.

Thank You to Emily and all of her readers for having me today!!

Happy Crafting!

Paper Crafts Gallery Idol Challenge 2013 Open Auditions Cards

It's that time of year again! The time of year when Paper Crafts Gallery Idol challenge begins with it's open round of auditions where designers can enter a total of three different cards to win a spot in the top 20. Gallery Idol challenge is like the popular live singing competition, however instead of voting for your favorite singing contestant, you vote for your favorite card making contestant. The theme for the open round auditions is birthday cards for children and teens. I created two different cards, one aimed at a little boy and the other for a girl.
For my first entry,  I used Photoshop to place an animal print brush as the background. Then I added some animal silhouettes in bright and trendy boy colors with a playful sentiment. Finally, for a little texture I stapled a little twine to the card.
For my second entry, I was inspired by the cute and trendy clutch purses that teen girls love to collect. I die cut cardstock to create this fun mini clutch, and added a beaded trim for the purse strap. The sentiment tag is also attached with the beaded trim  to mimic  a beaded chain found on high end purses. The striped flap can secure a gift card for an extra surprise!

There's still time to create a card and submit for your chance to make the top 20! Open Auditions end tonight!

Winner of Paper Crafts 350 Gifts and Cards Blog Hop

Thank you to everyone who hopped along with the Paper Crafts Blog hop! Your comments were so sweet; totally brightened my day. I would love to give away a free issue to everyone, but I only have one, so here's today's winner!

Stamped Cards Introducing Austen Obsessed and Eye Love

Today's release day at Sweet Stamp Shop, and I am showcasing two of the fun new sets; Austen Obsessed and Weird Love, plus new cardstock that is now being offered. It's 120 lb and perfect to stamp on.

For my first card, I used the Austen Obsessed set  which comes with a lace border and lace element stamp that you can create a lot of fun looks with, plus beautiful sentiments straight from Jane Austen literature. Imagine all the possibilities for this set!

Since, I am a fan of Mr. Darcy (and married my own Mr. Darcy), I wanted to use this most famous quote from the book.
I added a decorative lace trim with the border stamp and then created  a lovely focal point with a floral sticker, resin frame, ribbon, pin and bird. The fun patterns are made soft and delicate with the lace trim stamp and script sentiment.

Materials: Austen Obsessed Set | Sweet Stamp Shop Cardstock | Aqua Mist Dye Ink | Tuxedo Black Dye Ink | Up and Away 6" x 6" Pad | Up and Away Stickers | Bird Wood Veneer | Resin Frame | Ribbon | Heart Stick Pin | Postal die cut
Eye Love is a fun and quirky set! It comes with a variety of images  and sentiments geared towards vision, plus some other fun shapes. I like to stamp in out of the box ways, always trying to find new ways to stretch a stamp set. 
In this card I combined stamps to create a fun pattern design. I repeatedly stamped the oval and circle shape. Then, I flip stamped the circle stamp to fill in the inside of the circles with the back of the stamp.

After I stamped the design, I added strips of patterned paper, wood veneer shapes and sequins to add some dimension to the card.

Materials: Eye Love Set | Sweet Stamp Shop Cardstock | Aqua Mist Dye Ink | Clover Chalk Ink | Pale Tomato Dye Ink | Sequins | Triangle Wood Veneer | Yes Please 6" x 6" Pad

Thanks for stopping by. Make sure to visit the Sweet Stamp Stamp blog for a complete release of all the fabulous designers who are joining us this month. You'll find plenty more awesome crafty inspiration. 

Also, don't forget to leave a comment on my Paper Crafts Blog Hop post for your chance to win a free  special issue! Deadline is tonight, so don't delay!

Make Your Digital Stamps Transparent with Photoshop

Digital stamping. Have you heard of it? Have you tried it yourself? If you're not familiar with digital stamping, then today's project is for you. Digital stamps are so much fun to use. You simply download the file (either jpeg, png or something similar), and then you can customize in a photo-editing software program. The options are endless, and the best part? There's no mess to clean up!  For today's project I used a feather and sentiment digital stamp from the Paper Smooches blog and made the jpg a transparent png in Photoshop Elements, so I could make it look like the feathers are falling.
After I made the feather stamp transparent png in photoshop, I filled it in with colors and layered the feathers simply by copying and pasting. You can even change the opacity of a stamp to make the actual image transparent, so that images beneath it show through. Finally, I placed the sentiment and added "for you" using the Champagne and Limousines  font that you can download here. A few fun sequins finish it off with some cool stripes that move your eye around the card.

Not sure how to format your jpeg digital stamp so that you can color and layer it? Here's a fun tutorial that you can try. I used Photoshop Elements, but most editing programs are similar.

Paper Crafts Magazine Presents 350 Cards and Gifts

It's blog hop time, so you know what that means--another fabulous special issue from Paper Crafts Magazine has hit newsstands. 350 Cards and Gifts is full of all your favorite project ideas like card sets, gifts and tags. To celebrate this page-turner, I've created a gift wrap set with a matching card using Avery Elle's Ikat set; a super trendy pattern seen everywhere from kitchenware to home furnishings, and now paper crafting!
In a continued effort to not over-think my paper crafting, I am amazed at the sheer ease of this project, particularly the gift wrap. I took regular 'ol printer paper and stamped a fun ikat pattern on it (note: I went through five sheets of patterns until I settled on this one!). Then, I wrapped up some boxes with it, and added ribbon and twine!
I repeated the colors of the wrap in the card, and stamped the ikat pattern at a diagonal.  I added a wood veneer  and stamped a sentiment to create some visual interest.

This whole project was quick and easy--a perfect solution if you ran out of wrapping paper or need a coordinating card.

Please make sure to stop by the other lovely designers blogs to see what they've created for the hop. Leave some love at each blog for your chance to win a copy of this fantastic issue.

Emily Branch (that's me!)

I have a free issue to give away, so leave me a comment below telling me what's your favorite birthday craft to create by Tuesday, May 14th, and I will post the winner on Wednesday, May 15th! Please check back to see if you've won. I always pick a winner, but the winner forgets to check!

Mother's Day Spa Gift Box

Mom's are always busy, on the go, worrying about the family and tending the house. Rarely, do they get a break to relax with a glass of wine, some calming music and the lights turned down low. Since most mom's won't be getting any of that with the hectic pace of daily life, why not help your mom relax by wrapping up some spa essentials for Mother's Day featuring SEI's most recent collection, Diana
Aromatherapy is a nice way to relax, so consider including bath salts to your spa box as well as a loofa for an invigorating feel. Choose products like mini shampoo's, conditioners and lotion that can easily be tucked in a box. They're easy to decorate with patterned paper and not too heavy.
You don't want to make a mess, so make sure to package your spa box just right, so it's easy to use

| PACK OF LOOFAHS | Wrap a few loofah sponges in a glassine bag, and secure with a mat of die cut labels from Morning Walk and Close of Day. Attach a tag with baker's twine

| PACK OF BATH SALTS | Don't forget to package bath salts in a glassine bag for a luxurious  aromatherapy bath. Package in the same way as the loofahs.

| ESSENTIALS | Match the shampoo, conditioner and Lotion to the set by mounting Garden Party on Light of Dawn and adhering it to the bottle.

Place your spa essentials in a box, decorate and VOILA--you have a  beautifully wrapped spa box filled with every thing she needs to relax.


Tuck-Away Travel Notes

Have you ever asked your spouse what it was about you that made them fall in love with you? You may have expected to hear the typical responses, "your stylish hair," "that snort in your laugh," "the way you talk on the phone, apply make up and walk the dog all at once." Well, when I asked my husband this question while we were still dating, I was so wonderfully surprised with what he told me. He told me that he knew he was falling in love with me because I would hide little hand-written notes and crafted cards in his clothes when he traveled, and he loved finding them tucked away in his shirts.
So, with the celebration of our fourth wedding anniversary still fresh on my mind, and an awesome opportunity to play with Score Pal products, I created a mini travel notes matchbook set of tags that are  perfect to hide in your children's lunch box or your husband's briefcase.

Because these cards are teeny and meant to fit in a small space, the Score Buddy is the perfect miniature scoring tool to use with your SEI paper. I chose patterned paper from the new Blooms and Blossoms collection and created some trendy geometric patterns on one side, while leaving the other blank to write a message.
Since SEI and Score-Pal partnered up this month, I was super excited when I opened up my box and found all these goodies, including Score-Tape which I had just run out of! You can score your own deal on the tools by purchasing their adorable value bundle (pictured above).


Can you believe that this matchbook was made from a 6" x 6.5" piece of paper? Just score, trim and adhere with score-tape, and slide your tags inside! It's that simple!
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