Happy New Year! I am delighted to welcome you to our new home for the Pop it Ups Designer Challenges. Having the challenges hosted on my blog allows us to change up the format a bit in the coming months and bring you even more videos and inspiration from the talented Designer Challenge Team and invited guests.
This month I issued a pretty simple challenge in honor of all the new Pop it Ups products . . . NEW! As long as they incorporated at least one new product into their projects, everything else was up to them. I love what they came up with, from tags to flat cards to pulls, slides and pops - they hit it all! Themes? We've got coffee, friendship, encouragement, Valentines, congratulations, love, birthday and tea. Change the greetings and many of these ideas would work for other themes as well.
For my card I wanted to transform Jinks the Monkey into a sock monkey for a fun "we should hang out" card. I wanted something that could be used as a Valentine, but would also work for any time of year. The new Oval Landscape Accordion fit the bill nicely and I assembled it a little differently to get a symmetrical look on a 3-page album. Learn how I made it by watching the video:
When the album is closed it measures 4" x 5.25".
By using the (optional) alternate assembly method with the center page folded, the album looks very symmetrical when open, despite being made from an odd number of pages.
This top view shows how it is assembled. The center page is folded and used as an X to connect the outer two pages.
Using a stencil to decorate the center page is a great choice since it has to be folded for this assembly method. Using a stencil pattern rather than adding layers keeps the bulk down on the page. The Trellis Wavy Frame added to the outer edges punches up the red, and the decorator heart is made with monkey tails.
All of the new products with the exception of the clear stamps have shipped out to local stores and I really encourage you to give those local stores your business before buying online. One thing I certainly saw at CHA were fewer local independent stores. We need them! If, however, you are sadly without a local store, here are online shopping links for the items used in the video:
Let's see how the incredibly talented Designer Challenge Team interpreted this challenge. I am happy to report that nearly all of the new products are represented this month. For each card you'll see a photo here with my thoughts on why it's such an awesome card, but you'll see SO MUCH MORE if you click their names to go to their blog posts. They all have additional photos, tips, supply lists, etc. Don't worry - by clicking you will merely open a new window, not lose this one. So whenever you spy a card you want to see closer, just click the name and open that window.
FLATS & TAGS - For the debut of this collection I asked the team to make some flat card fronts and tags to show that Pop it Ups can be used for more than just pop-ups. They came through with amazing booth samples and a few of them are posted for this month's challenge.
Shelly Hickox made these three pretty tags incorporating new products (Stencils, Hot Air Balloon, Stamps) with existing favorites (Clock, Eiffel Tower, Happy Birthday) and the results are gorgeous! I love all the pretty layers and textures.
Sandy Diller went steampunk with this tag, featuring Jinks the Monkey, Cheeky Monkey Clear Stamps and the Clock & Gears dies. I have nicknamed this tag Steamponkey. (See what I did there?) I love the rivets on the tummy. Brilliant!
Raquel Mason converted Cheepers the Chicken into a super chick, complete with mask and cape. She used the new Partly Cloudy Stencil for the sky and altered the Cheeky Monkey Clear Stamps to fit her theme. I love the chicken wire debossed into the piece.
Kelly Booth rocked the new Cup Pop Stand by using the Cup die for two coffee-themed cards. She incorporated the new Coffee Embossing Folder, Coffee Stencil, Flower Stencil and Coffee & Tea Clear Stamps. Kelly creates such amazing textures.
GENERAL POP-UPS - There are three new styles of General Pop-ups in the CHA 2016 release and all three were used in the challenge. There's the Cake Pop-up, the Hot Air Balloon with Pop-up and the Barrel Basket with Pop-up. You'll also see how the two new Characters, Baker the Beaver and Jinks the Monkey, plus the Baking-themed Props 8, tie in with the new pop-up dies.
Kelly Booth made this bright and fun birthday card with Baker the Beaver, Props 8 and the Swirly Flourish Stencil for the front of the card. She used some new stitched rectangle dies from Els van de Burgt Studio for the layers. The greeting is from the Just a Note Clear Stamps. I love the mixture of textures - pastes, Shimmer Sheetz, fluff & glitter.
Karen Aicken also used the new Cake Pop Up, but by using elegant shimmer papers, she achieved a completely different feel to the die. I love how she slid the die toward the right (placement along the fold is always up to you!) to keep the floral pattern traveling uninterrupted along the left side. Karen discovered an excellent alternate use for the Ring Frame Edges 1 die set - she makes banners! You'll see more banners on her second card coming up. What a clever idea!
Karen Aicken's second card uses the new Hot Air Balloon with Pop-up and once again, Karen shows the versatility of Pop it Ups where you choose your location along the fold. She decided to cut two pop-ups into the card and place a balloon on each, plus her signature banner technique connecting the two. Another way to spot a Karen Aicken card is to look for beautiful pen detailing, as she has done on the clouds and the balloons.
Fran Sabad shows the other new pop-up in this release - the Barrel Basket with Pop-up. For the Hot Air Balloon and Barrel Basket, the idea is that they are great decorator dies that happen to include a simple single or double tier pop-up for when you want to animate them. In Fran's case she decided she wanted the Barrel Basket further forward in the card to make room for her monkeys, so she switched to the Lots of Pops for the structure. Who doesn't love three monkeys juggling bananas?! She also shows the new Bananas Embossing Folder and the Pull Card Edges.
OVAL PULL CARDS - The newest addition to the Pull Card collection is the Oval Pull Card with optional Slot/Slider. I also added a fun set of edges called the Pull Card Edges that allow you to easily add paper around any of the three Pull Card designs, but also to use in fun ways like we've seen already for shaped cut outs, rickrack and more!
Fran Sabad combined the Oval Pull Card with the Hot Air Balloon for this sweet Valentine. Pull Cards have alignment nubs that allow you to choose your placement along the fold and also the card size. Fran made an oversized card to allow for three balloons.
As Fran's card opens, the slider arm pulls the balloon across the card, making it fly. This is also a great example of the Pull Card Edges in action. Her white patterned paper was cut with the edges to leave a slight shadow around the oval on the front of the card, and the scalloped border inside allows for decorating right over the tuck slot but it remains operational. This works on all three pull cards, by the way, which was no easy feat in the design process!
Summer Hills-Painter also used the Oval Pull Card, Pull Card Edges and Hot Air Balloon, but, once again, her choices are completely different and so the cards are completely different. So much versatility with dies - everyone should be using them! Summer shows an inspiration piece on her blog - a gift bag with hot air balloons. She used it as a jumping off point for both of her cards this month and even incorporated parts of the bag into the designs. On Summer's card you cannot spy any of the Hot Air Balloon in the closed position.
As Summer's card opens, however, it rises up. This is another great technique where she used the optional pop-up feature from one of the other Pull Cards - in this case the Spinner die from the Rectangle Pull Card - with one of the other Pull Card shapes. I love the styling on the balloon with the heart peel-offs as the trim.
HANGING CHARM PULL TAB - This die set was very popular at CHA and uses a basic interactive card technique, the pull tab tent, but with an added twist of an open frame to animate a hanging charm. Four charms come included in the set - a coffee cup with cardboard sleeve, a butterfly, a heart and an Eiffel Tower. You can also eliminate the charm and use the frame to animate a solid object. You also have the option to orient your pull tab as a forward pull or a rear pull. Lots of options with this set and the team has been making the most of them!
Frances Byrne made a very pretty in pink Valentine using the heart charm and a rear pull. By extending the pull tab and cutting the end into a tag shape, she adds form and function to the design. As usual, she has the perfect stamps for the card! I marvel over Frances's skill with combining colors and patterns. She's a master!
Summer Hills-Painter also extended the pull tab into a tag shape for easy pulling and used her inspiration piece, the gift bag, for the hidden greeting. Instead of a hanging charm, Summer used the frame to animate the Hot Air Balloon, which she assembled as a shaker! Such a great way to use the balloon. Once again those heart peel-off stickers along the trim really give the balloon that finishing touch.
Caz Counsell combined some beautiful colors for this card and I love how she incorporated the same colors into the "enjoy" stamp from the Just a Note Clear Stamps. Caz illustrates a great technique with the Pull Card Edges here - by using the scalloped edge on both sides of a skinny strip of cardstock, offsetting the scallops, the die creates a gorgeous rickrack! Caz also used the new Flower Stencil on this card, with paste for texture. Lovely!
Shelly Hickox drops the mic with this amazing masculine steampunk Valentine for her hubby. It's such a wonderful combination of signature Shelly textures created with mixed media materials, plus metals for that industrial feel. If you click Shelly's name you'll be able to see this card in action in a video. As I like to say about everything she makes . . . Shellypiece!
CUP POP STANDS - If you're looking for a great all-around die set to celebrate your favorite beverages - coffee, tea, hot cocoa - look no further than the new Cup Pop Stand die set. As we saw on Kelly's flat cards, it works great just as a cup embellishment for any type of project, but can also be animated into a pop-up using the included Pop Stand die.
Caz Counsell (from England) knew that she'd be using this die all the time to send tea cards, so she created her very own custom stamp to use as a tea bag hanging from the cup! Brilliant! I particularly liked this angled photo showing much of the card, but if you click her name you'll be able to see the other photos showing more of the details, such as the lace Paris Edge along the back of the card. I like her use of the Oval Pull Card heart on the cup - so sweet!
Frances Byrne (from Australia) made it a coffee cup for this gorgeous coffee card. You'll see the Pull Card Edges in use again - for the scalloped borders between the papers and also for the scalloped border across the cup - that scalloped border is a great addition to any card. Frances also used the Coffee & Tea clear stamps and the Just a Note clear stamps to make her custom greeting. The colors are so fresh and fun.
Sandy Diller (from USA) made this steampunk version of the Cup for the Pop it Ups Cardmaking | Winter 2016 eBook. It's FREE, so definitely check it out for awesome card ideas and instructions. The details in this card are spectacular, from the clever use of the Clock & Gears die, to the rivets and metal gears on the coffee cup. Sandy incorporated the new Coffee Embossing Folder into this piece as well.
Well I hope you feel inspired to check out the latest release of Pop it Ups dies, folders, stencils and stamps to make dynamic cards for any occasion.
Join us here next month, on February 10, 2016, when we will be taking on a challenge called GLITTER!