Sunday, June 7, 2015

CYCI #73 Am I Blushing?

Howdy!  Be forewarned...I'm long-winded tonight.  Shocker!

Glad you made it for another edition of a challenge! This week, we have a color challenge:
So I was actually stuck on this challenge.  I did what I normally do when faced with a color challenge; I pull the ink pads and cardstock, lay it out on my desk, and stare at it until I see an image that I can use for inspiration (maybe something underwater, a circus tent, an animal, etc.) then I grab a few stamps sets to go with my vision and get to work.  This one wasn't that easy.  It started out just fine...the laying out of the colors and the staring was no problem!  Actually, I'm lying. It kind of was a problem.  Well not really lying, I just forgot something that happened...wanna hear about it?  Feel free to journey into my world....
I'm not sure if most of you know about my creative lifestyle and habits.  Let me share with you.  I'll start with the basics.  My wife is a stamper.  She's been doing Stampin' Up! for over 10 years.  Needless to say, she has accumulated many things.  Like any creative person, she is "creatively organized."  Which works out great for her.  Now here I come.  I start stamping a few months ago, and now what is hers is also mine to use.  Luckily, I have paid some degree of attention to her hobby/business through the years, and I am somewhat familiar with the supplies and general gist of cardmaking.  So when we stamp together, it's easy for me to ask her to hand me some washi tape or baker's twine, or have her tell me where the embossing folder is, and especially be able to answer the ever important "What color paper is this? Island Indigo or Pacific Point?  Crushed Curry or Daffodil Delight?"  Now fast forward to current times.  What started off as just stamping with her when she stamps has turned into me doing my thing and her doing hers.  She'll say "I have a blog post due on Wednesday and I haven't made my card yet," and I'll think "Oh, crap!  I have to make a card tonight because I have a blog hop tomorrow!"  But then she says "Well I'll just have to make something tomorrow," and I think "Oh crap!  I need to go to work tomorrow! I still need to make a card tonight!"  You see, I have a more-than-fulltime demanding job.  Plus a wonderful family of 3 daughters and an amazing wife to give my attention to when I'm not working. So when do I stamp?  Usually after 10pm.  Yep. Which is actually pretty nice.  It's quiet and it's fairly relaxing - until I hit a creative block and have a project due the next day with no inspiration to create...those nights are NOT so relaxing.  Since I tend to procrastinate and wait to make a project until the night before it's due, failure is not an option.  Neither is not being in the mood.  Good thing I'm more of a night person anyway.  So back to my life... I start stamping around 10pm, and it takes a while for the creative juices to get flowing.  So it's usually around 11 or 12 by the time I'm in the zone. And can you guess what happens then? I need something for my card.  And by that time, I can't ask anyone for washi tape, or baker's twine, or if Coastal Cabana has retired yet (sadly, I do know the answer to that one) because I'm the only one awake.  So much of my time is spent searching.  And searching.  And looking at to see if product is current. Then searching some more.  Then looking through the catalog to see if there's an embellishment that would work with my card.  And if there is, it's usually a blessing and a curse.  The good part is that there's an embellishment that would work with my card.  The bad part is that now I have to find it!  Lol! 
What does this have to do with the color challenge, you ask?  Well, the colour combo is Blushing Bride, Sahara Sand, and Basic Black.  I hadn't ever used Blushing Bride or Sahara Sand.  In fact, I actually had to leave our craft room just to find those ink pads out in the "secondary" ink caddy in the spare room.  They were among colors like Creamy Caramel, Eggplant Envy, Lucky Limeade, Gumball Green, and Cajun Craze.  So they were pretty much banished.  I always thought that was all retired stuff, but I guess I was wrong. 
So I grabbed the two ink pads and of course they were dried out.  But miraculously I found a Blushing Bride refill!  No luck on the Sahara Sand, though.  But as I stood in the dining room looking at the ink pads and going through the "staring" phase of my creative process, it hit me. I was holding Sahara Sand and I thought "hey, that's just a grayish-brownish color."  And I immediately thought of another brownish-grayish color, except this one was new, had coordinating accessories, and most importantly, I KNEW WHERE IT WAS!!  That's right, I'm talking about Tip Top Taupe.  So sorry to the folks at CYCI...I tweaked your color challenge a little bit, but if I never would have told you then you probably never would have please forgive me and give me points for honesty.
Anyways, my take on the color challenge is a combo of Tip Top Taupe, Blushing Bride, and Black.  But even after I found the colors, I still struggled with the challenge.  Don't get me wrong; it's a great color combo, and the colors work beautifully together.  I just didn't have an Aha! moment. After a while, I did have a few ideas of some directions that I could go, so I headed over to the stamp shelves and grabbed a few stamp sets. I must say, that part has become SO MUCH easier since we renovated the craft room.  Before, we had a mix of current and retired sets all sharing the same shelves.  Now, we separated new from retired so I am able to focus on the current sets!  It's the little things that make me happy...
Now I'm back at my desk with the colored card stock, ink pads, and selected stamp sets all piled up.  I start stamping the Build a Birthday cake onto a Blushing Bride card front.  It doesn't stamp right, so I use the back, I'm not happy with it so I try another card front, and repeat until I literally went through an entire sheet of card stock.  Yes, that's 8 chances for something to work, but it didn't.  I put that set away; it wasn't meant to be. 
But during the process, I did get another idea.  The colors, the stamp set, and the layout I was playing with really leaned toward a "Clean and Simple" (CAS) design.  CAS is not my thing. Not my style.  I really really like the look of it, especially from superstars like Krista Frattin and Sarah Sagert, but for some reason I just can't bring myself to do it.  I guess I like to torture myself with a high degree of difficulty and complication.
But this week I decided to go for it, and here's what it looks like:
I actually have one and a half cards for this challenge.  Ok, I didn't REALLY make half of a card, but...well, take a look:
See, I just couldn't bring myself to leave it plain.  While I do like the look of the first card, I felt like it was missing that certain je ne sais quoi and it needed a little pop of bling.  My 10 year old daughter actually helped me with this the morning after I made the first version.  I think the glimmer of silver, button, and twine bring balance to the card and complete it.
What do you think?  Would you have been happy if I had just made the CAS design for you?  Or did it need the extra bling?  Just want honest opinions here.  Don't worry, you won't hurt my feelings. I really do like them both.  It's just the whole CAS thing throws me for a loop....
Thanks for making it to the end.  Even if you just skipped the story part and stayed for the cards. Either way, I'm still glad you're here.  Don't forget to visit to see what the other designers have to share.  After you get all inspired by these colors, bust out your Sahara Sand and Blushing Bride and get to craftin'!!  Join us this week and show off your stuff!
Time to hit the hay for me.  Please leave comments.  Let me know what you think about my CAS.  Should I try it again?  Or stick to complex?  What do you like? Not like?  Was this too many words?  Should I practice CAS blog writing? LOL!  Ok, for real, I need to go now. It's really late and I have a lot to do tomorrow.  Thanks for being here and reading this and liking my stuff.  See you later this week with an all new post.  Take care, y'all!


  1. I typed up this great reply... and lost it on my cell... so now I"ve got to figure out something equally funny...

    Love the card!

    Thats all I got! LOL!!!

  2. James, I love both cards! Much of my style is CAS and I gotta say that even with the bling, I still consider your second card to be CAS. Grin

  3. Hi James, this is my first time on your blog and you weren't kidding about the long read. but thank you I enjoyed reading it. Now you asked for honest feedback....i would much prefer to receive the Blinky card, I agree it needed balancing up. If I had of got the first card I probably would have checked the envelope to see if anything fell off! Lol thanks for sharing your story.. G'day from Melbourne Australia!!

  4. Like your CAS card with the banners best, yes I call that CAS also. Looking forward to seeing your new craft space in the near future.

  5. Bravo on both! Great Job and Thanks for sharing!

  6. Your post made me chuckle, because I can relate... too many stamps to choose from! I love the bling you added! Perfect touch!

  7. Dang, I don't even remember writing the end of this post. Lol! I must have been delirious by then from sooo much writing. I think I was literally dozing off when I got to the end. Thanks for sticking with it :-)

  8. Lol it is so funny to read of your trials and tribulations in card making. It sounds just like my attempts to make something work, I do a lot of staring as well but it works for me and for you by the sounds of it. While I would never choose Pink as a personal choice I might just give it a go as I really like this card, both versions are ok with me. I have no probs with the long read, I really enjoyed the story and I feel like I belong in this crazy stamping world a bit more.
    Regards thestampinupbloke from Tasmania