Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Sweet Treats

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Today I'm posting a card I put together for OWH (operation Write Home) for the Midweek Throwdown Challenge. I was asked to make a card with a Sweet Treat theme. When I was contacted regarding this project I looked at what I had in the way of sweet treat themed materials and realized that I had very little and half of what I had was glittered (which we all know, for the safety of our troops, is an OWH no-no). So I thought I either go buy better sweet treat themed materials or I improvise.

I thought improvise was a good option because so often we see cards made with all the typical, pick it up at the local craft shop, materials and if I improvise I could show how you can put together a cute card with your printer and the internet - or, if you want to get even more creative, your printer and your computer. If you have a program like Photoshop you can make your own designer papers for the backgrounds. If you don't have Photoshop there are good, and, more importantly, FREE programs out here that you can edit images with Like Paint.net or Gimp. I found that Paint.net works a lot like Photoshop - not exactly, but close enough. And lets not forget that we can also do some stuff with the basic Paint program that comes with most computers. 


So, keep an open mind with regard to what your options and possibilities are. And, now I want to show you the cards I came up with. Here is the first card. It's a simple card, but I think it's pretty cute. I hope you do too.



For this card I started out with two images that I grabbed from a website with free desktop background images:
http://www.backgrounddiva.com/wallpaper/desktop-wallpaper/valentines-day-wallpaper/valentine-cupcake
Be sure you stay within the guidelines of copyright infringement!  Most of these images are free for personal use but not free for commercial use. Once saved to my PC I can use it as is or use paint or Photoshop to tweak and edit.

I wanted to add the sentiment directly to the image but I wasn't really feeling the love of any of the fonts I currently had so I went to dafont.com and found what I liked. One thing I like about dafont is that if you see a font you think you like, just click on it and it opens a new page that allows you to type the text you are going to use and you see how that text actually looks in that font.



I installed the font to my PC and then opened the image in Paint to add text to the cupcake wallpaper and then saved that with a new name (that keeps the original in it's original state so I can use it again later.

Now that I have my sentiment image saved I open Microsoft Word and using the "Insert" menu I select "Picture" and then select "From File". I select the location I saved the picture to and it is inserted into Word. Then I grab the bottom right corner and drag the arrow to reduce the size to fit my A2 card - or, reduced to fit as the top layer on my card. (TIP: I printed on plain paper for a dry-run to verify my sizes)

Next I "Insert" the second wallpaper I saved (the one I decided would make a good designed paper). This one I did not resize since I knew I was going to trim it to be my bottom layer the same way I trim store bought DP.



From here I print my images on cardstock and trim. I added a punched trim behind the cupcake layer - punched with a Martha Stewart around the page punch (TIP: I cut my layer and made the around-the-page punches and then made the top image fit that size since the around-the-page punches require specific measurements in order to make a smooth transition from corner to corner). I used foam tape to pop the top layer up a bit and threw in a few pearl dots for glitz.

Okay, now, lets change this up a little. Lets use a cupcake from a kids coloring page for our top layer and a photograph image designed paper:



I took a photo of real cupcakes and using Paint.net (the free program) I lightened them so they would be a softer image.  Next I took a cupcake picture that I got from a children's coloring page website  and inserted it into a Word doc, added my sentiment and printed it out (along with my image for my background paper) so I could color it in with my Copic markers. 






Again, I added the punched border for a bit more layering and raised the top layer with foam tape. For this one I added some soft pink sheer ribbon for that touch of bling.

So, there you have two Sweet Treats cards and neither required store bought paper or stamps. Sometimes it's just fun to play "outside of the box" and be a little more creative!




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4 comments:

  1. I really like the lacey white border you used in both of these. It's perfect with the 'sweet theme'. I often find myself creating what I call 'hybrid' cards, using a combination of digital and non-digital elements and I agree that you don't have to have a huge store of supplie to make a nice card.

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  2. Thanks for the tutorial on making your own paper and using images to create it! This was great and the cards are great too! I still really like the borders :)

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  3. Thank you for sharing your cards. I just love the pink cupcakes.

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  4. Adorable cards.. thanks for the info on printing stuff off the web.. unfortunately I only have two black ink laserjet printers. I gave away the two color photo printers I had when we moved here since I print everything off at Walgreen's.. now I wish I still had one. thanks again ~ Pam

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