Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Copics Continued!

Hi all! Hope your week is going well! We are closing in on the end of the week here and I don't know where the time went! Hubby has Friday off so we might just hit the mountains! I can smell the fresh air now!

Copic week part two continues over at Flourishes. Last week, the owners shared some tips and valuable coloring tips. This week, it's the DT's turn! You'll have to check out the fabulous tutorial Cindy Lawrence put together over on the Flourishes Newsletter!

Remember this project I shared a little less than two weeks ago?

Well, I thought I'd revisit it and share some tips on how I colored it and some other fun things about adding some additional color with Copics!

First, these were the collections that I used....

Like I've said in the past, Flourishes makes it SO easy. They've grouped the colors so that you don't have to guess what colors will blend nicely. I colored these lemons in - I kid you not - 5 minutes!

Want to see?

I started stamping my lemons from the Life, Love and Lemons set with Palette Noir and then coloring the base of the lemon and leaves with the lightest marker in both collections - Y00 and YG91.
Then, I added some shading with the second lightest colors - Y02, YG93.

Then, I added the second darkest shades in both of the collections - YG95 and Y06. Keep in mind - normally I would be blending as I go because it is best to blend while the paper is still wet from the marker's ink. But, for tutorial purposes, I wanted you to "see" how the color is layered on the paper.

And lastly, I added a bit of the darkest shades in both collections - Y08 and YG99.
When you are done adding your shading, then it is time to go back over your work with the lightest shade in both collections to blend!


I didn't want to just leave the lemon with a white background. I wanted to add some depth thanks to the BG11 marker in the Water Collection. Here's a peek at those shades...
I love the lightest blue shade to add some depth to my images. Here is what it looked like before I blended...
And, here is what it looked like when I took my Copic Blender and, using circular motions, fuzzied the lines of the blue to make it look more natural..
You can't really tell because it is so subtle, but I edged my paper in this BG11 and then went over the edges with my blender pen. It just added a soft bit of color that I love.
And that, my friends is it! I hope seeing the process makes it easier to see just how easy it is to get the vibrancy that only Copics can deliver!

Be sure to check out Cindy's tutorial over at the Flourishes Newsletter. Latisha and Stacy also have samples to show as well. So, be sure to hop on over there too!

Monday, June 29, 2009


Hi all! I spent a good part of today cleaning the stamp room and man oh man did I decide to part with some fun stamps! Some are old and loved -- others have never been used! I had to make some room. I was bursting at the seams! Just click on the Stamps for Sale icon to the left and that will take you to my Flickr page. If you see something you like, just email me with your requests to juliekoerber@bresnan.net.

Thanks!!! Hopefully, I can find these stamps some good homes! ;-)

Coloring made easy!

I have to admit, I was a newbie to Copic markers until very recently and I was doubtful that I would be able to get my coloring to work for me. I tried but did have some troubles getting my colors to match up. Then a couple months ago.... I took the Flourishes Copic Collection for a test drive! I cannot tell you how easy this system makes coloring with Copics! The ladies behind the company did all the leg work and all you need to do is pick up the markers by collection. All the natural shades and highlights have been chosen for you to blend perfectly!

Ok, Ok. I'll stop. I'm just kind of excited about it -- can you tell?

So, all this week, the Flourishes DT is showing you all how easy it really is! Christine Okken is the hostess over on the Flourishes Newsletter and will be showing us all how to cast gorgeous light reflective qualities onto the parrot tulip in the Stamp Simply Thank You set. Faith Hofrichter also colored up some fun that you can check out HERE over at her place!

And, here is my card!
First things first, these are the two collections that I used....

I started by stamping my Sweet Peas onto Flourishes Classic White card stock. To color my flowers and leaves, I took the lightest shades in each color collection and colored the entire "base" of my flowers and leaves. Then, I added the next darkest shade and added even less of the darkest shade. Then, when all was done, I went back over my flowers and leaves with the very lightest shade to blend. Keep in mind, you don't want to let too much time pass before you blend. If the paper is still slightly wet, you will get much better blending results!

Here's a close up of my Sweet Peas so you can see the finished product!
As for the card mechanics, pretty self explanatory! The paper is Raspberry Tart from Stampin' Up. I used my circle Nestabilities to create my circles, added some pink bling and a fun bit of ribbon and.... done!

Don't forget to check out Christine's tutorial HERE. Thanks for stopping by! I'll see you back here soon!

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Twice as nice Friday!

Hi all! It's Friday... which means a plethora of fun is headed your way! Flourishes Friday is being hosted by the fabulous Leslie Miller and her focus today? How to use solid stamps in a fun way!

Sharon's Stamp Simply challenge was a two fold challenge - she wanted us to use green and blue together... and paper pierce! You'll have to check out the Stamp Simply crew and see what they cooked up this week! Sabrina -June Guest Designer, Janine, Jennifer, AJ, Tammy and Deb. We have two new members to the DT too! Barbara Anders and Jenny Gropp. Welcome, girls!

Back my creation! With those two challenges in mind, I came up with a super duper easy card that touched on all of that. My inspiration was actually THIS book by Nancy Curry. She has some great techniques inside that are things I turn to when I want to make my own backgrounds.

So, here's my card...
One of the techniques is to use resist ink. I used Clear Resist by Ranger, but you can also use Versamark and then heat set it before you move on to the next step. Using the resist ink, I stamped the flowers from the Spring Ephemerals set by Flourishes.

After that, take long post it notes and rip them to serve as masks. I used a Kaleidacolor ink pad in Calypso Blue and just rotated between the greens and blues in the ink pad. As I laid my mask down and then kept moving it down the line to cover my glossy paper, I changed colors and sponged on the next shade. I wanted to create a bit of contrast between each new strip. I hope that makes sense!

After you're done adding the ink, the rest is just the mechanics of the card! Paper pierce, add a decorative edge with a Martha Stewart punch, some green SU Twill ribbon, a stamped tag (sentiment is from the Sweet Violets set) and some bling! That's all there is to it!

Here's a closer peek at the flowers in resist ink...

You'll have to stop on over to the Flourishes Newsletter to read up more on Leslie's tips on ways to use solid stamps! And, don't forget to visit the rest of the gals on Flourishes DT ~Christine Okken, Cindy Lawrence, Faith Hofrichter, Latisha Yoast, Laura Fredrickson, Leslie Miller and Stacy Morgan
Thanks for stopping by! Hope you all have a great weekend and I'll see you back here soon!

Ten-Minute Creation!

Recently my neice graduated from high school and I wanted to make her a card that had a sentiment on it that really encouraged her as she steps into a new and exciting chapter of her life. So, I came up with this little card.....

I just love that quote. It is from the Timeless Quotes set from Flourishes and it is a quote from Dr. Martin Luther King. I think it is so true! My neice is about to go into nursing school. What a wild and wondeful ride that will be!

This card was truly a ten-minuter! I found some distressed linen patterned paper and I took a post it note and masked the bottom part of the card. On the top, I inked up my Nasturtiums stamp with black ink and stamped it along the top. Add some beautiful crochet ribbon, some 1/4" sheer and a stunning slide and you are almost done! I stamped the quote onto a piece of white paper that I had cut from the Curved Rectangles die by Spellbinders. I then made a frame using the same size die and the next one smaller. Add the frame to my quote along with some mini self stick silver pearls and.... done!

The card was a hit with my neice. I love when hand made cards are appreciated! It just warms the heart knowing that a card made with love is accepted with love. Don't you think???

Hope all is well in your corner of the world! See you back here soon!

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Butterfly.... flutterby...

If you stop by my place here -- you know I love to color! And, when I saw this image from Gary Robertson (Impression Obsession) called Window Box... I knew it would make a great afternoon of just my watercolor pencils, a cup of coffee.... and me!

It's a pretty straight forward card! I stamped the main image using Versafine Black Onyx, heat set and then just went to town with my watercolor pencils. I usually start with one color i.e. shades of green. Then, I blend with my blender pen before moving on to the next color family. What is fun about this image is it is kind of sketchy leaving your coloring a bit to the imagination! The base is kraft cardstock that was stamped with the Heart Scroll Border and Versamark ink. Add a button, some twine, fun ribbon, and a little distressing and paper piercing and... done!

I love that little butterfly up in the corner just fluttering by. Doesn't it just remind of you of a lazy summer afternoon when life can seemingly stand still... for just a bit?

Well, I had that kind of experience as I was relaxing tonight. My daughter was riding her scooter up and down the sidewalk and I was sitting on my front porch just soaking in the evening sun when I heard this LOUD buzz..... Luckily, I had my camera next to me because I planned on taking some pics of my DD. Look what I found!

Isn't that fun? I think my neighbors thought I was nuts trying to sit in my flowers taking a picture! Oh well, it will give them something to talk about! LOL!

Hope you are having a great start to your week! See you back here soon!

Monday, June 22, 2009

Fruitie Patootie!

Hi all! Quick and easy card for you this Monday!

When Flourishes released the Life, Love & Lemons set, this card popped into my head! Something perfect for a friend that you really need to catch up with!

I just stamped the lemon on a punched circle with Memento Dandelion and shaded a bit with Memento Cantaloupe using a waterbrush. Mat is up and add a loopy brad with some fun ribbon and a bit of bling and you're almost done! The circle was cut with a circle cutter and stamped with the lemon half and seeds using Cantaloupe ink as well. Add your sentiment and a scalloped edge thanks to some decorative scissors and.. that's pretty much it!!!

Do you remember me telling you about Flourishes' project to honor wounded warriors? Well, the news is even bigger and better and YOU could win some free stuff from the Flourishes store and help out a great cause! Click HERE to find out what I am talking about!

And speaking of Flourishes -- did you see their BIG announcement on the blog today? You'll want to check that out! ;-)

Thanks for stopping by!!! I'll see you back here soon!

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Dad's Three Little Lessons

For those of you that don't know, my "day job" is the editor of a regional women's magazine (Yellowstone Valley Woman. Recently for my Editor's Note, I wrote a little bit about my dad. I thought on this day we honor the men that made us the people we are, I'd share it all with you.

Dad’s Three Lessons...

When I was 6-years-old I climbed up onto a speckled horse named Smoky and was trying to muster up enough courage to go on a trail ride with the rest of my family. As the horse kicked and swatted off huge horse flies, I was grabbing on for dear life afraid this massive beast would throw me off. I screamed, “I’m scared DAD!! Get me off!” With the gentlest look in his eyes, my dad said rather firmly, ‘If you get off this horse, I promise this will be the last horse you ride.’ I was speechless. My dad was basically telling me, buck up or get off. I stayed on. The photos captured from the family camera show the end of the ride with a little girl waving and smiling. My dad beamed. As the story flashes forward, I went on to become an award-winning equestrian. It’s funny how life works its magic.

Dad’s lesson number one – never quit.

My dad never told me not to quit. He lived and led by example. At work, he was known as the problem solver. If there was a difficult issue, they sent it to my dad and he’d work away until he found a solution. As an automotive engineer, that is not an easy feat. His “stick-to-it-ness” earned him two patents. I can tell you one of the patents was for an Integrated Manifold Muffler Catalyst design. What that means, I am still not sure. I just know it was something “smart.”

When you look at my dad’s story, it reads kind of like fiction. He was a high school dropout who quit school to race cars. When he got some sense about him and realized he needed school, he attended high school and college at the same time – finishing both in the same time that it took many to finish college alone. His love for racing never ceased. When he was in his sixties, he made it onto the pages of Car & Driver magazine for taking first prize in the Michelin One Lap of America driving his Grandsport Roadster. It was a cross-country competition that had him gallivanting from city to city to race around different tracks. It had my mom in knots with nerves. I think she thought he was too old to do that kind of silly stuff. My dad didn’t think it was silly. He called it living. Life is just too short.

Dad’s lesson number two – live like there’s no tomorrow.

The third lesson was the hardest for me to swallow. It was to be strong. I remember hearing the words “cancer” and thinking, ‘No, God, please no.” I had known something was wrong for about a year but for some strange reason, my dad’s lung cancer went undiagnosed. When it was found, it was almost too late. My dad, being the fighter he was, decided to jump into treatment with both feet. I watched him turn into a shell of himself after rounds of chemo and radiation. The vision would have me crying myself to sleep many a night. As we sat on the couch together one day near the end, I remember holding my dad’s hand with tears in my eyes saying, ‘Dad, you are my hero.’ With his trademark wink and smile, he said without losing a step, ‘That’s ok, but I am not wearing a cape and tights.’ Here was a man who was 5’11 and down to 135 pounds yet he was still a giant in my eyes.

Dad’s lesson number three – be strong.

My dad lost his fight with cancer five years ago. It’s a fight I remember each and every Father’s Day. I don’t remember to reopen my grief. I do it because even in death my dad continues to teach me. He lived until his last breath. He didn’t quit. Instead, he walked into God’s open arms knowing, there was a new problem to solve up in heaven. I still see his wink and his smile. I hold on tightly to those three lessons that will carry me to my last breath on earth. Dad, you continue to inspire.

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Twice As Nice Friday!!!

A tasty treat for you this Friday! I've got two challenges headed your way! First, the Stamp Simply challenge (ssnotime92). And, second the Flourishes Focus which is all about Spellbinders Dies!

The Stamp Simply theme is all about summer recipes! You can check out Sharon's official details HERE! We all love getting new recipes to try out. Today our challenge is to make a card, or recipe card, or anything at all that will either hold a recipe or that we can write a recipe on AND there’s one more part that’s optional, but would be fun. SHARE your favorite summer recipe with us in your post!

I don't want to forget to include all the links to the fab Stamp Simply team! You need to check out their handiwork -- and recipes! Sabrina, June Guest Designer, Janine, Jennifer, AJ, Becky, Tammy and Deb.

So.... here's my recipe!
This was super duper easy peasy! I just used my Curved Rectangles Spellbinders die in the two largest sizes and before I cut the smaller shape, I printed my recipe thanks to my computer printer.

The rest is stamping the lemon from my Life, Love, Lemons set (brand new!) from Flourishes. I also used the soon to be released Buttercup and Fields Copic Collections to color both the lemon and leaves. This was amazing. I just picked up 8 markers without even thinking about what to use for highlights, main color and shading and within 5 minutes - I had my lemons colored! So.... stay tuned! These collections will be released in a matter of DAYS!

Here's a close up....

I did use a little stickles on the flower and I also used BG11 to create some depth around my lemon image.

The Flourishes Focus this Friday is all about Spellbinders dies! Latisha Yoast did a wonderful show and tell using a whole bunch of different dies! So, be sure to stop by and check her post out HERE! The rest of the DT has also created some eye candy and fun ideas for you to gander at! Make sure to hop on over and see what they cooked up!

Laura Fredrickson
Cindy Lawrence
Leslie Miller
Christine Okken
Faith Hofrichter
Stacy Morgan
Sharon Doolittle

Speaking of cooking... here's my Lemon Bars recipe! My mom has made these since I was little and even thinking about them makes my mouth water! It's a recipe she found in the Betty Crocker cook book.

photo courtesy of Betty Crocker

Lemon Bars

1 c. flour
½ c. butter or margarine
¼ c. powdered sugar

2 eggs
1 c. sugar
½ t. baking powder
¼ t. salt
2 tablespoons of lemon juice

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Press the crust into an ungreased square pan and bake for 20 minutes. Beat all of the filling ingredients for three minutes until it is light and fluffy. Pour over the hot crust. Bake at 350 degrees roughly 25 minutes or just until no imprint remains when touched lightly in the center of the pan. Cool and cut into squares and top with powdered sugar.

YUMMMMMMMMY! I think that I am going to do this more often - fun creations that I can share here with my favorite recipes! This was fun!

Thanks for stopping by and I'll see you back here soon!

Climbing Rose - IO Challenge!

Hi all! Hope life is treating you all well! We actually had a nice day that turned into a big thunderstorm! Do you ever sit on your front porch just to hear those thunder bumpers go by? I love it. Don't know why.. but I love it!
My kiddos were jumping around saying.. "God got another strike!!" Followed by "God rocks at bowling!" Just made me chuckle!

I digress! Today's post is all about an Impression Obsession DT challenge! This one was a ton of fun to do! You couldn't use any kind of decorative paper at all on your card.......

Gosh, with gorgeous images like that -- who needs decorative paper! I used two stamps here -- Climbing Rose and Heart Scroll Border! The rose was stamped with Versamark ink onto kraft card stock and embossed with black detail embossing powder. The Heart Scroll was stamped with Dazzle Versamark in Champagne. I love that stuff! It just lets off the most delicate glimmer while still keeping that watermark look. After I embossed the rose, I colored it by picking up marker (Tombow) that I scribbled on a plastic palette with a waterbrush and then painting my rose and leaves. (Marker colors are... Persimmon, Crimson and Avacado with a bit of sand on the tag) Here's a close up!
After that, mat it up, add a decorative border punch (Martha Stewart), use a ticket corner punch (SU), some self stick gold pearls (Mark Richards) and some fabulous ribbon and... bam! Done!
Now make sure you make the rounds and see what the other IO gals cooked up! I am sure you won't be disappointed! ;-)
Until tomorrow!

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Swinging the day away!

Hi all! How are things in your neck of the woods? Here it is a bit colder than the norm (not cold but not really warm either) and a little too rainy for my liking! One of my friends who lives in another part of the country asked... "Are you getting webbed feet yet?" and... I thought -- just might be! :-)

A few weeks ago, a friend of mine who is a SU demonstrator (Sheila Barthel) taught a class where you made ten cards in one fell swoop - two each of five designs -- great class!

Well, I was flipping through my cards and realized that I never posted them here!

Isn't this just a cute design? Thanks Sheila! I just think it's a great all occassion card-- one that could have really any kind of sentiment stamped on the inside! Obviously all products were Stampin Up. The set is called Branch Out. I love this set - it's the one that has all the elements that you can add to the tree! I think what I like the most is the little pop of black too.
That's it folks! Hope you're having a great week! See you back here soon!

Mod Topiaries!

Hi all! Hope you are having a great start to your week! I got a little something to show and tell today that I think is kind of fun! Quick post for a quick to create card!

When I first saw this image from Impression Obsession, I immediately thought Christmas - Christmas topiaries, Christmas stars-- you know-- it should be done up in green and red! Then, I said - Nope! Not going to do it! I chose pink and green and decided there's no reason why this cute image called Mini Topiaries needs to be Christmas at all!

This card was really easy peasy! I stamped the image using Memories Tuxedo Black and then colored the pots and greenery with watercolor pencils and blended with a blender pen. The Pink portions of the "trees" were actually paper pieced using the decorative paper from the same Stampin' Up decorative paper pack (all paper except for base and main image are from Raspberry Tart, white is Whisper White from SU). Paper pierce the edge, add some grosgrain ribbon and some bling and you are done! Like I said -- easy peasy -- and cute!

Happy Tuesday everyone! See you all back here soon!

Friday, June 12, 2009

Sneaks Are Over!

All good things must come to an end and such is the case for the Hot Summer Sneak Peeks from Flourishes. But... the good news is... now the stamp sets are in the store and you can see them in their full glory!!



Patriotism on Parade

If you missed the announcement about the Patriotism on Parade and Flourishes effort to make a difference in the lives of wounded soldiers, you'll want to read HERE! It's pretty special!

Before I go, I wanted to show you one more sample with one of the new sets! This one is an easy peasy lemon squeezy kind of card!

All it takes is some decorative paper (Bo Bunny), some paper piercing, a large oval punch (SU), some fun yellow gingham ribbon, a button and some watercolor paper and you're pretty much there! I stamped my lemon image with Hybrid Pallete Noir ink and then colored with Cantaloupe and Dandelion Memento ink pads and Bamboo Sprout (Memento) and Vintage Green (Vivid) ink pads with a water brush. Make a watercolor wash out of Stonewashed Adirondack and that's pretty much it! The dots were added with a fine tip permanent black marker and my paper piercing template (from SU). Add the button and.... voila!
Hope you enjoyed the peeks this week and that you love the sets as much as we do!
Thanks for stopping by! See you back here soon!

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Hot Summer Sets -- Grand Finale - plus a challenge!

Hi all! I hope you've enjoyed seeing some of the summer fun that's being cooked up by Flourishes! Today.... is the grand finale complete with fireworks!! Keep reading too because this set we are unveiling today is on a mission - one that we sincerely hope you will help us with!


For my project today, I combined the Stamp Simply challenge (ssnotime91) with my sneak peek! The challenge? Half circles! All you needed to do was create a project with a half circle as a part of the layout! You can stop by Sharon's place for all the official details HERE! And, you'll have to check and see what the other Stamp Simply gals cooked up! Sabrina, June Guest Designer, Janine, Jennifer, AJ, Becky, Tammy, and Deb.

Well, if you saw the Patriotism On Parade set - you'd know, a half circle is pretty easy to pull off!

So, off I went making "firecrackers!"...
I have to start by saying - this wasn't my idea! I picked it up in the June/July issue of Family Fun magazine. See?

Basically, you cover lifesavers with decorative paper and add the "sparkle" thanks to that metallic packing material that people put in gift baskets and bags. You twist some wire around it and then insert it into the center of the lifesaver! Easy peasy!

I knew right away that I wanted to make my half circle the bunting stamp from this new set. I stamped it, and colored it with Copic Markers (R27, R29, E33, and B29.) Then, I started to work on my box. I made it 5" by 9" and scored at the 2", 4", 6" and 8" mark so that I had a 2" square box with a 1" flap to secure my box. I also scored an 1-1/2" from the bottom to cut and create my flaps to secure the bottom. The rest is just decking out with decorative paper (the Paper Studio) and I did add some ribbon (Hobby Lobby) and bling.
I also added a little message on one of my firecrackers!
Now to the touching part about this set! This story is a bit long - so I hope you stick with me!! When this set was first crafted,one of the things Flourishes really, really wanted to do was use a portion of the proceeds to benefit a military cause of some sort. After digging into the issue,we found a great cause!

Friday night when this set is released - part of the proceeds will go to benefit The Wounded Warrior Project. Here's a little history about this non-profit...

"The Wounded Warrior Project began when several individuals took small, inspired actions to help others in need.One night while watching the evening news, a group of veterans and brothers were moved by the difficult stories of the first wounded service members returning home from Afghanistan and Iraq. They realized then and there that something needed to be done for these brave individuals beyond the brass bands and ticker tape parades. The resulting objective was to provide tangible support for the severely wounded and help them on the road to healing, both physically and mentally. What had been initially viewed as a small contribution (compared with what the warriors had sacrificed while serving our country) has become WWP's signature program:WWP backpacks delivered bedside to wounded warriors."

As I went through their website, I was amazed, absolutely amazed at the wide ranging programs this organization initiated. They have training programs to help wounded soldiers transition into the workforce. They have caregiver training focusing on PTSD. They have support groups and rehabilitative retreats that they fund. I started to cry when I saw all the good this organization does.

Having deep ties to our country's military, Flourishes wanted to be a part of the solution. We are proudly donating a portion of the proceeds of our brand new Patriotism on Parade set to the Wounded Warrior Project. We believe in the work they do and we can't wait to support this group's amazing efforts.

Before you go - please stop by and see what our Design Team crafted in honor of this special set!

Leslie Miller
Christine Okken
Cindy Lawrence
Faith Hofrichter
Julie Koerber
Latisha Yoast
Laura Fredrickson
Stacy Morgan

Do you want to win this set? Simply leave us a comment over on the Flourishes Newsletter -- the winner will be announced first thing tomorrow morning! Speaking of winning sets... did you check out our Easy Breezy challenge HERE? All you need to do is create a ten minute card and link it on THIS post by 5 PM Eastern tonight and -- you're in the running for the drawing for all three of our new release sets! We'll announce the winner during our Release Party!

FYI: Before I go-- don't forget the Flourishes Power Hour! It's our fast paced summer release party over at the Flourishes Forum on Splitcoast! We know you all love to be outside and have more family commitments - but we don't want you to miss out on the fun! So join us for an hour of reveals, games, chat and fun! The party starts at 9 PM Central TONIGHT!

Thanks for sticking with me and thanks so much for stopping by! See you back here soon!