Aug 2015 Pop it Ups Designer Challenge - Inspired Creations

It's Designer Challenge day! This month I challenged the team to be inspired by each other. They were instructed to go back through their teammate's creations and find one (or more) to use as inspiration for a new project. They could be inspired by the whole card, a technique, a color scheme, a combination of dies - anything. The results are magnificent and you'll definitely want to check them all out on the Elizabeth Craft Designs Blog Post here.

AugAnimated

I was inspired by three projects - Kelly Booth's Easter Oval Accordion from the Spring/Easter challenge, and Caz Counsell's "FrankenPop" card and Fran Sabad's Poppy Halloween card from the Spooky September challenge.

KB_Halloween_OC_Accordion_Open

From Caz's FrankenPop card, I took inspiration for styling Jolly the Mouse as a monster. I filmed this as its own video so it can double as the "how to assemble" video for Jolly. Just cut the pieces from traditional mouse colors instead of monster colors when you want to create a sweet mouse instead of a scary one.

 

Once I had my "monster mouse" I was ready to tackle the main project, where I included several techniques. Here are the techniques (and start times) included in this video:

  • Technique #1: How to create the silver/black embossed damask pages. (slide to 1:50)
  • Technique #2: How to create an Open Center Accordion. (slide to 3:35)
  • Technique #3: How to cut an opening in an accordion page and add fishing line to float items. (slide to 6:00)
  • Technique #4: How to make bats and bones from the Cocoa the Horse die. (slide to 8:40)
  • Technique #5: How to use transfer paper to make a spooky debossed tree background. (slide to 12:35)

  

When the album is closed there is no indication that the middle pages are not full outer frames. This is why it's important to make Open Center Accordions in multiples of 4 pages so that each "open center section" is attached to full pages on each side. This view shows off Technique #1 (silver/black embossed damask), #3 (Cocoa bat) and #5 (transfer paper spooky tree background)

KB_Halloween_OC_Accordion_Closed

 

Here is a close-up of the first two pages:

KB_Halloween_OC_Accordion_Pages1

The close-up of the second two pages shows Technique #3 (fishing line floating) and Technique #4 (Cocoa bat & bones) plus another version of Technique #5 (spooky ghost tree)

KB_Halloween_OC_Accordion_Pages2

Here’s a handy reference for making bats using the Cocoa the Horse die.

CocoaToMakeBats

The video mentions that the display of an Open Center Accordion will differ slightly from a typical accordion. The two inner ovals will not pull out all the way into a straight line but will stay slightly bent in the center. However, the lack of a center outer frame means there’s no problem viewing both inner ovals.

KB_Halloween_OC_Accordion_Open 

Don't forget to see all the inspiration pieces on the Elizabeth Craft Designs Blog Post here.

Elizabeth Craft Designs products are sold at independent craft stores worldwide. Here are some online shopping links for the products used in both videos:

 
Edited to add . . . Shelly Hickox told me that there are actual craft videos on Vine, which I found surprising as you only get 6 seconds. I've used Vine to post looping videos of my cards opening and closing, but never any instructions or anything. So I thought I'd see if I could pick out 6 seconds of the Monster Mouse video and it's surprisingly how much you can show in 6 seconds! So if you don't have nearly 8 minutes to spare to watch the real video above, here's a 6 second version:

 

July Secret Word Giveaway *WINNER*(s)

Congratulations to Judy, who was chosen by random draw as the winner of the July Secret Word Giveaway. Judy's comment:

I am excited about the merry and bright collection. I get excited about anything that pertains to Christmas. Excited about adding to my Christmas stuff.

The secret word for July was "Excited" in honor of the brand new collections. Judy's comment on the July Designer Challenge - Homegrown Holidays blog post was chosen by random number generator and she has won her very own #1045 Fence Pop Stand die plus a Farm Character die of her choice.

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Now why is the July winner announced in mid-August, you ask? Two reasons - 

  1. I didn't send the July newsletter in July. I waited until the dies were shipping the first week of August, so as not to frustrate folks who wanted the dies as soon as they saw them. (What can I say? I'm a giver!)
  2. I forgot to post the winner last week like I was supposed to. Luckily Liz e-mailed me a reminder so I am rewarding her niceness by picking a second not-at-all-random winner from a list of exactly one comment and guess who won? LIZ!

Liz's comment...

I’m Soooooooo Excited !! as the song goes …. Thank you for the wonderful additions to the Farm series. My card recipients will appreciate their new cards. The Mouse and Reindeer characters will be MUST HAVES too. Can’t wait to get my hands on them. Thanks again for your creativity.

...was chosen as a bonus winner. Liz will also win her very own Fence die and her choice of Farm Character.

Congratulations, Judy and Liz! Check your e-mail for some happy mail!
 
Want to be in on future Secret Word Giveaways? Join my mailing list for ONE e-mail a month that will include the secret word for that month's giveaway plus a link to the Designer Challenge post where you should add your comment. Click the button below to join the mailing list. Your first newsletter will come on the next Designer Challenge day (or sometimes the next day)
 
 
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Or another way to join the mailing list is by using this handy "text to join" method. No need to do both, either the blue button above or the "text to join" below accomplishes the same thing. (Readers outside the United States should probably choose the blue button rather than the text option, since standard messaging/data rates may apply.)

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17th Birthday Cards for Karl & Emma

HEY! This isn't funny . . . these babies just keep growing up! Here's a selfie of us Thursday on their birthday - seventeen years old! (Can you believe Karl was less than 3 lbs at birth? I know! Crazy!)

17SelfieKKE

I like to personalize their birthday cards for what they're into at the time. Two years ago they got Dr. Who 9th Doctor cards. Last year Karl got a video game/music card and Emma got a Captain America card. This year I was a little stumped for Karl because he really hasn't changed his interests in a year. However, he does attend horse therapy and we do live in Texas, so I hit on the idea to make their cards have a Texas theme. 

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Both cards are 5" x 6" cards, fitting nicely in A7 envelopes. For Karl's card front I assembled a Texas flag using strips of cardstock and the barn star from the Star Accordion die. By selectively inking three stamps in the Homegrown Greetings Clear Stamps I was able to create a custom "Keep Calm and Howdy Birthday" greeting and used a tag die from the Tags Pivot Card to cut it out. The barbed wire is from the new Western Edges die set.

Karl17Front

Inside Karl's card I've used the pop-up portion of the Sleigh Gift Card Holder die to make the platforms and then used the Barn and Cocoa the Horse on the platforms. I embossed the Chicken Wire die in silver and black powder for the foreground and used the horses edge die from the Western Edges for the backdrop. The "Texas, Est. 1836" is a Deadbeat Designs rubber stamp that is stamped, colored and fussy-cut, then added with All Seasons Tree clouds into the sky. Cocoa the Horse is styled as a Texas flag with an altered Props 1 Bowler-hat-turned-cowboy-hat.

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In this next photo you can see that when the barn doors slide open a little "happy birthday" message is revealed inside the barn plus some additional hay blobs from the Hay There set. The grass die comes in the Western Edges die set.

Karl1BarnDoors

I wanted to continue the Texas theme for Emma's card but also wanted it to have a driving theme as she recently got her Learner's Permit and is currently doing her driving sessions. I decided to make a Texas Longhorn cow and style her like Emma with short brown hair and hipster glasses. The Western Edges were used to create a suitably Texas backdrop for the card front and Brownie Emma sports a pink cowboy hat.

Emma17Front

I used the tail of Jolly the Mouse to make the horns for Brownie the Cow. The cowboy hat was made easily by simply trimming the top of the bowler hat from Props 1 into a cowboy hat shape.

Emma17CowHat

When the card is opened I wanted to have Brownie Emma driving a car. The Lorna Label pop-up die provides the platform for the car and the backdrop is the barbed wire Western Edge and some fussy cut clouds from a piece of patterned paper. I used gray cardstock to make the road and added the stripes with yellow and white graphic art tape. The striped patterned paper is an older Basic Grey paper from my stash.

Emma17Open

I assembled another Brownie Emma, this time with her hat attached to a horn as though it were flying in the wind. I also trimmed out her front legs and tail to move them into a driving position. The steering wheel is two small nested circle dies and two thin cardstock strips to make cross bars.

The car itself is made from the Bathtub die. I cut one from red and turned it upside-down to be the main portion of the car. Then I cut another bathtub from silver Shimmer Sheetz and trimmed out the lip to be the car's bumper. I found some metal mesh and two silver buttons in my stash and added them to the front of the car. I made the little Texas license plate by hand and used two black rectangles of cardstock with rounded corners for the tires. For the top I used the Oval Accordion and largest oval decorator die, nested together.

Emma17Closeup

The cards were a hit! Happy Birthday, my babies! 

17Cards

Want to make your own Texas-themed cards? Elizabeth Craft Designs products are available at independent craft stores worldwide. Nowhere near a craft store? Here are some online links for all the ECD products used on these two cards:


July 2015 Pop it Ups Designer Challenge - Homegrown Holidays

I'm blogging on the Elizabeth Craft Designs blog with this month's Designer Challenge. The theme this month is Homegrown Holidays where I challenged the team to make Christmas in July cards with a farm or country feel. They were encouraged to use new dies from the Farm 2 and Merry & Bright collections, which will ship the first week of August 2015.

JulyAnimated

For my contribution this month I did something different. Rather than make one 16-18 minute video teaching a fully decorated card, I concentrated on a couple of shorter "how to assemble" videos that will be easy to refer back to when you just need a quick refresher for how to assemble a die. Today I have the Farm videos - How to Assemble the 6 Farm Characters and How to Assemble the Fence Pop Stand die. Coming soon will be the Merry & Bright assembly videos. 

 

 

The clear stamp sets have arrived the but dies are still two weeks out. They will start shipping to independent craft stores worldwide the first week of August 2015.

KarenBurnistonFarm2_Fence

If you are lucky enough to live in the area of an independent craft store I highly encourage you to give that store your business before ordering online. Yesterday my friend Karrie Allen, the owner of Scrapp'n Savvy in Spring, Texas came over to use my set of dies to design cards using the Christmas kit from SS's upcoming Kit Kraft Day.  If you are a Houston-area crafter you should definitely check it out. Here are the cards Karrie designed. This is the type of personal service, ideas, inspiration, love-of-the-craft that store owners show their customers every day. Please support your local stores first - they are such a vital part of our industry and of our communities.

KarrieCards

For those of you sadly without a local store, you will be able to purchase the new dies online when they become available. 

 
Don't forget to check out the Elizabeth Craft Designs blog for all the amazing Homegrown Holidays cards by the team!
 
Happy Crafting!
 
KarenSiggyLogo
 

Giveaway winners announced!

Congratulations to Jan and Lorie for being randomly selected to win the Sneak Peek Giveaway. 

Jan wrote:

OOHHH my!! What fun new critters! And I love the props, I want to spread those around on Hoppy and his friends!

Lorie wrote:

Perfect found my Christmas cards for my horse friends. Thanks for listening to all our requests.

Jan and Lorie will each get to choose one clear stamp set from the two choices below: Homegrown Greetings or Merry & Bright.

If you missed the preview of the two new collections you can see them here: Sneak Peek: Summer 2015 Pop it Ups Release

Your next opportunity to win will be this week when the monthly newsletter goes out with the Secret Word Giveaway. If you're not already a member of my mailing list you can sign up in the left sidebar using the blue "join my mailing list" button. You will receive one e-mail a month normally on the day of (or day following) the Designer Challenge. 

Jan and Lorie, check your e-mail for some happy mail!

Thanks to everyone for commenting on the new collections. They will start shipping to stores the first week of August 2015.


Sneak Peek: Summer 2015 Pop it Ups Release

Today's the day! I'm excited to share Sneak Peeks of my two newest Pop it Ups collections for Summer 2015. Each of the collections features six new dies and a 4" x 6" clear stamp set. 

First up, Farm 2. The first Farm Collection has been very popular and I've been getting a lot of requests for more farm animals. 

Farm2Collection

Meet Cocoa the Horse, Snowball the Sheep and William the Goat. (It's up to you if you call him Billy!)

1044_Cocoa_the_Horse 1046_Snowball_the_Sheep
1048_William_the_Goat

The packaging sample for the Fence Pop Stand is an "I love you" card and you can see how nicely the collection coordinates. For this card I've used Cocoa the Horse, the Chicken Wire, Fence Pop Stand, William the Goat and the Homegrown Greetings Clear Stamps. 

KarenBurnistonFarm2_Fence

The Fence can be used several ways - with or without the cross bar that makes it an X-lattice fence, with or without the included emboss/stencil feature that give it the woodgrain look, with or without the extra posts that give it dimension and with or without the included Pop Stand die that turns it into a pop-up fence. Additionally, the fence can be assembled as a corral by connecting the outside posts and not the center. There are a ton of variations with the fence die.

1045_Fence_Popstand
You may notice some things we've added to the packaging - the assembled size of the dies (since you always choose your own card size the pop-up "sizing" is just the pop-up portion of the die), the number of dies in the set, and the item numbers/names of the other ECD products used on the decorated package sample. The instructions for assembling the pop-up dies are on the back of the packaging as usual.

People always ask how I name the Characters, and in this case Cocoa the Horse was named by my husband, John. I wanted a name that would be similar in feel to Brownie the Cow and he came up with Cocoa. Everyone knows a Billy Goat, so I decided for the more formal version, William, just to be silly. Snowball got her name because she's big, white and fluffy. (or in some cases . . . she's pink!)

KarenBurnistonFarm2_PinkSheep

Inside this card I added the "Baby don't herd me!" stamp from the Homegrown Greetings Clear Stamps. This 4x6 set includes sixteen stamps meant to coordinate with the new Characters. There's a little something for all sorts of themes in this set; encouragement, love, birthday, hello, belated birthday, I don't follow the herd, and farm living. 

CS002HomegrownGreetingsClearStamps

I designed the Farm 2 collection with more of a western feel than the first Farm collection. The Western Edges can be used to make great backgrounds. The small horses will also work great with the Barn Pop Stand die.

1047_Western_Edges

Finally there is the Chicken Wire die. This die doubles as a hexagon template - the ejection holes in the die are perfectly spaced hexagons that can be sponged or sprayed through for interesting backgrounds. Another great feature of this die is its size. It's 5.5" wide, so it will span a landscape A2 card, and 3" tall, but repeats on the vertical. So in other words, if you want a full background simply cut two chicken wires and stack them to make a 6" tall piece.

1043_Chicken_Wire

 

Next up is the Merry & Bright Collection. Once again there are 6 new dies and a 4x6 Clear Stamp set. Since the stamp sets are meant to coordinate with the entire collection, I felt that it was important to keep the number of dies in each collection to a manageable (and more affordable) size. 

MerryBrightCollection

Two new Characters join the gang in this collection. Rudy the Reindeer was named by my daughter Emma and Jolly the Mouse was named by John. I wanted a name for the mouse Character that would work for a Christmas release, but also year-round. Once again John came up with a great name. Jolly the Mouse comes with two accessories - a 2-part candy cane and a 2-part piece of cheese. Rudy the Reindeer comes with a wreath to wear around his neck or hanging from an antler.

1038_Jolly the Mouse 1041_Rudy the Reindeer

Several members of my Design Team had been asking for a Santa hat and antlers to fit the Characters. Props 5 includes a whole Santa costume - hat, glasses, mustache and beard, plus a set of antlers and a bright red nose to turn any of the Characters into a reindeer.

1040_Props 5
Here's a card with Jolly wearing the Santa suit. The background is made using the Merry & Bright clear stamp set.

KarenBurnistonMerry_JollyMouse

You'll see the Merry & Bright Clear Stamps show up on all of the pop-up samples to follow. There are 16 individual stamps in the set and they are designed to coordinate perfectly with all the dies in the Merry & Bright collection. 

CS003MerryBrightClearStamps
Next up is the Merry Christmas pop-up die. The Happy Birthday has been a popular die so Els asked if I could design a similar pop-up in a Merry Christmas theme. Instead of having just the words as the pop-up part, I thought it would look nice with some extra decor so I incorporated swirls, a flourish and hearts. 

KarenBurnistonMerryChristmas

The die set includes a dimensional banner to fit the lower platform that can be optionally stamped with the clear stamp set. The accessory words, flourish and hearts can be used independently as well, so this is a great die for both pop-ups and flat cards. 

1039_Merry Christmas Popup

I really love how the new Christmas Trees Pop Stand die works. You can create two sizes of tree - a smaller flat tree (the clear stamp set includes a greeting that will fit this tree perfectly) and a larger dimensional tree with a hanging center and two trees that expand when the card opens.

KarenBurnistonTrees

The included Pop Stand die is a single, so you are not required to put both trees in the card, but it's easy to do so by simply cutting a Pop Stand wherever you'd like a tree. There are two string-of-baubles dies that can be used for decorating the small tree when not using the coordinating stamp. The dimensional tree is best decorated with patterned paper, embossed cardstock and/or glitter dots to make sure it can still open and close without too many bulky ornaments.

1037_Christmas Trees Popstand

 

Another request by Els was a pop-up sleigh. I designed a pop-up sleigh die years ago with a different (more complicated) mechanism. That die is long since discontinued but I always liked the shape of the sleigh, so I have brought it back with an easier and more useful mechanism.  This die is called Sleigh Gift Card Holder because the pop-up structure behind the sleigh includes integrated tuck slots to hold a standard size gift card. The pop-up is fully functional with or without the gift card. Additionally, since the sleigh parts and the pop-up parts are on different dies, they can be used independently of each other. You can swap out different items on the front of the pop-up to change the theme entirely. The card below shows off the Merry & Bright Clear Stamps and how well they coordinate with the dies in the collection. The "Santa Says" circle stamp can be optionally filled with "Nice!" "Naughty!" or "Shop!" and fits perfectly on the sleigh.

KarenBurnistonSleigh

Another fun (and optional) feature of the Sleigh Gift Card Holder is the extra angled platform on the right side of the card in front of the sleigh. I designed it to perfectly fit Rudy the Reindeer so that Rudy's antlers, which extend outside the card edges when the card is open, will be hidden when the card is closed. The small angled platform can be popped back in when not needed. 

1042_Sleigh Gift Card Holder

 

The team has been busy making amazing cards with the new collections and you'll see a lot of those cards debut on their personal blogs this weekend and especially next week, when the team takes on the Designer Challenge with a theme of Homegrown Holidays - Christmas cards with a country or farm feel. The best way to make sure you don't miss those cards is to "Like" the Karen Burniston Designer Facebook Page, where I post links every day.

The collections were previewed to retailers yesterday and many stores have already started placing their pre-orders to be first in line to get the collections when they start shipping the first week of August, 2015. Is your local store already carrying Pop it Ups? If not, please encourage them to do so. Elizabeth Craft Designs ships to stores worldwide and they can find out more information on the website: elizabethcraftdesigns.com

Make sure you check back next week on July 15th for the Designer Challenge. My contribution will be short how-to assembly videos for all the new pop-up dies in the Farm 2 and Merry & Bright collections. I can hardly wait for you to see all the amazing samples by the team! Some are being posted already:

Fran Sabad's Birthday on the Farm Card
Kelly Booth's Jolly Santa Rudy Sleigh Card
Caz Counsell's White Stag with Christmas Tree Card
Karen Aicken's Silver Rudy Lots of Pops Card

 

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  • Farm1
  • Card_PIU_LotsaRudy_2
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GIVEAWAY: leave me a comment on this post by 5 pm CST Sunday, July 12, 2015 to be entered into a random drawing for your choice of either CS002 Homegrown Greetings Clear Stamps or CS003 Merry & Bright Clear Stamps. I'll draw two lucky winners!

I hope you're as excited about these new releases as I am, and may the odds be ever in your favor!

KarenSiggyLogo