Saturday, July 7, 2018

~ Friends of Unity July Blog Hop ~ Christmas in July ~

Hello! It's the first Saturday of July!! That means it's time for another Friends of Unity Blog Hop!

Before I get started on my cards for this month's hop, I'm super excited to share that we have a new friend hopping with us... Joyce Verdon! I was really excited when Joyce started her blog the beginning of this year. She's an amazingly talented artist and I've been loving on her cards for quite some time. I was even more excited when Joyce said she'd love to join our Friends of Unity Blog Hop! So please give Joyce a big welcome to the hop!! 

Now let's get back to it... this month our theme is Christmas in July. I absolutely love making Christmas cards so when Jeanie suggested it, I thought it was a perfect idea!


For my first card, I wanted to go with a non-traditional color scheme. I was thinking light, pastel colors with a lot of white and some sparkle. I also thought I'd ink the little snowmen from the Snow Way set that I hadn't inked up yet. They looked like they wanted to have some fun!


To start, I made my background... I smooshed some Distress Oxide inks on my craft mat adding a bit of water. I like to work with one color at a time... I think it gives me more control on where the colors go. I start from the lightest color to darkest too, but I often go back and smoosh again with each color. So for my background I used Tattered Rose, Worn Lipstick, and Wilted Violet. I also like to create two backgrounds when I do this technique... it's amazing how different they will turn out and then you can pick and chose which one you want to use and save the other for another project.


Once I was happy with my background and I had it completely dry, I added some white acrylic paint splatters. For this I just add a drop of paint to my palette, spritzed it with a little water, mixed it up with a cheap paint brush from my kids watercolor set, and splattered away. I also used my Sakura Gelly Roll Stardust gel pen to add a bit of sparkly snow by simply making random dots.

Next was my scene... I die cut a few of the Tim Holtz Tree Line dies out of white card stock. I added some clear wink of stella all over the trees and then I added a touch of the stardust gel pen to the edges of the trees... not all over the edge but where I wanted some sparkly snow to be on the trees. I then layered the trees using pop dots just on the bottom portion of the tree line so the front layer of trees would give some dimension to the card. I die cut my Scalloped Stitched Rectangle Frame die from Gina Marie Designs from white card stock. I did that twice and layered them together to give the frame some support because I was going to pop it up on the card. 


My final touch for this card was, of course, these sweet little snowmen! I stamped them with the new Gina K. Designs Amalgam ink and then colored them with the following Copic markers ~ BG0000, BG11, B000, B01, V0000, V01, V04, R00, R20, R81, RV21, Y000, Y06. This was my first time using the Amalgam ink with Copics and it worked beautifully! I fussy cut each of them out and adhered them to the card. Now at this point, I decided to add the sentiment which wasn't the best idea because my white craft ink wouldn't show enough and when I heat embossed it and it still didn't show very well... so it's kind of like a hidden message in the sky. LOL :)


Since my sentiment on the front of the card didn't quite work out... I decided to ink up the inside of the card. I stamped a few snowflakes and this great sentiment from the Like a Snowflake sentiment kit using the same Distress Oxide inks from the background. I think they tie in really well with the front of the card.

Now, I got on a bit of a roll thinking up Christmas card ideas so when I saw this technique in an email I just had to give it a try. And it was a great excuse to ink up this sweet Unity set called Happy Holidays. This set was designed by Jolande & Marleen last year and I just had to have it, but I didn't get a chance to ink it up so I was really excited to get to play with it for this card.


I've gotten a bit ahead of myself though... to create the background, I blended Broken China distress ink over the top two-thirds of the distress watercolor card stock and then blended some Mermaid Lagoon at the top of the card stock. I wet my wide watercolor brush (not dripping wet, but a bit more then damp) and painted from top to bottom letting the brush create some streaks. I cleaned off my brush after every other stroke so the inks didn't get too dark and it kept a nice ombre look. I stamped the branches from the Winter Blessings set around the edge using Mermaid Lagoon distress ink at the top, Broken China in the middle, and then Tumbled Glass at the bottom.


I then stamped the ornament from the Happy Holidays set using Versamark watermark ink and heat embossed ultra fine white embossing powder. Using my water pen I saturated the middle of the ornaments with clean water and dabbed them with a paper towel to lighten the background colors to make the ornaments pop a bit more. Once that was dry, I used my clear wink of stella to add some pretty glitter and also a touch of the stardust gel pen to add some dimension. The sentiment was inked up with Versamark watermark ink on Pacific Point card stock and embossed just like the ornaments with white embossing powder. Those are my cards for this month's hop! So much fun to create and I hope you got some inspiration from them!

I have some business to take care of now, before we move on to the hopping. Last month I had a giveaway and I need to share who the lucky winner of the brand new Kendra Girl stamp set is...  drum roll please... the lucky winner is...





LISA BUSCH!!!! Woohoo! 
Lisa please email me at crystalominkler@gmail.com with your mailing address to claim your prize. Prize must be claimed within two weeks.
Thank you to all those that hopped with us last month and, of course, this month!

Now since I had such a blast making these Christmas cards, I thought I'd do another giveaway... this time the winner will receive a brand new Jolly Ol' Santa set! I was playing around with this sweet new set this week and thought he'd make a great giveaway... so be sure to hop and comment on each of our blogs so you'll be entered into this giveaway. We sure appreciate and love all of your fun comments! The winner will be announced during our next hop! There may even be another giveaway... you never know unless you hop. ;)


Now let's get hopping!


Crystal <--- you're here

up next ---> Robyn






Thanks for stopping by!

See ya next time.
~ Crystal




87 comments:

  1. Oh, I love both your cards!! The backgrounds are fabulous!!

    Congratulations to your winner, Lisa!!

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  2. Both of your cards are beautiful! I love nontraditional colors for Christmas, too.

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    1. Thank you, Wilma! Isn't it fun to change things up sometimes?! :)

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  3. BOTH of these cards are just stunning! I just love love love the non traditional colors! Brilliant!

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  4. Love both of these cards, Crystal! Love pink for Christmas and I just learned a new technique from you on the second!

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    1. Thank you so much, Joyce! I hope you share if/when you try that technique out! :)

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  5. Dang you Crystal! More stamps to add to my wishlist! These cards are adorable and I simply love the background colors in the snowman card...I wouldn't have thought of that blend for a winter scene but it is perfect. This is one of my favorite cards of yours! Great job.

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    1. Haha... I'm so glad you love the cards, Stacy! Thank you for your sweet comments each month! :)

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  6. Both of those cards are stunning! Thanks for the inspiration...

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  7. Love your cards and thanks for the great background idea

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  8. Wow Crystal! Beautiful cards! I love the use of non traditional colors on the first one. Gorgeous backgrounds and I absolutely love the scene you created on the first one!

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  10. Hahahaha I see my name below last months winner...so close. lol.
    Great cards. Just stunning. I love the snowmen, they are my favorite. And the blue pine bough background is amazing on your second card. Just lovely.

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    1. I know... just missed it by one. :( Maybe next time! :) Thank you so much for the sweet comments each month, Kim!

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  11. Both cards are beautiful Crystal...and I love the nontraditional colors too!

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  12. I love both cards, but the snowmen card is my favorite!! Your colors are so different and perfect for icy weather!! You are one talented lady!! xo

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    1. Awww... thank you so much for your sweet comment, Marcia! :)

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  13. Great cards. I love Christmas in July!

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    1. Thank you, Mary! Isn't it refreshing... especially after the heat wave we had last week! :)

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  14. The snowmen card is so cute! Your Holidays card is striking with that Ombre look!!

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  15. beautiful cards! love the ornament one!

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  16. I'm not going to lie, I love the distress ink color combinations for these beautiful cards. Shame it's summer here by the time December rolls around but it has started me thinking I best get started on some cards :) great coloring too

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    1. Yay! So glad you liked them, Kerri! It was kinda like that for us when we lived in California because it never really got too cold. Thank you for your sweet comment!

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  17. Great cards! That snowman one is so cute your coloring is awesome!! I'm dreaming of cooler weather here now!! lol!

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  18. These cards are gorgeous!!! I’m going to try the ombré effect!!! Thank you for sharing what you used.

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    1. Thank you so much, Denise! I hope you share if/when you give the ombre technique a try! :)

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  19. Beautiful cards I ❤️ ⛄️

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  20. Gosh, Crystal I love both of these cards! Great backgrounds, use of ink and stamps. Thanks for the inspiration!

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  21. These cards are gorgeous and I am so jealous since I am not creative like you

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  22. Crystal, I just love both of your cards! The snowmen scene is fantastic! And the blue with the ornaments is just beautiful. This makes me want to create Christmas cards now. ;)

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    1. Thank you so much, Carmen! Yay! That was our hope in sharing some Christmas inspiration! I hope you share what you make!

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  23. Adorable snowmen card! I love the way you did the sky. Your blue card has simplistic beauty.
    --Phaline Mays

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  24. I love both of these backgrounds and will have to try them out. Your layering on the first card is great!!

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  25. I like how you put the scalloped border frame around those cute frosty guys

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  26. These are great cards Crystal!! I love how you carried the theme of the front of the first card into the inside! Your cards are really pretty!! Thanks for sharing!

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  27. Great projects! Love the shadow box look of the scallop frame!
    Kim Marie

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  28. Both of these are gorgeous, but those blues are stunning. Fantastic cards!

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  29. Amazing cards Crystal!! I might have to CASE the second one, so beautiful!!

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    1. Thank you, Sandra! I hope you share if you do CASE it! I'd love to see your version!

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  30. I like doing non-traditional colors for my Christmas cards as well.... This year are browns! Anyway, lovely!!!

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    1. Thank you so much, Jen! Wow! Browns... sounds so interesting! Like a vintage brown theme? Ooohhh... sounds like a neat idea!

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  31. Great winter card I like your ideas and creativity.

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  32. I love your snowman card so much it’s adorable

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  33. Great holiday cards! Love the adorable snowmen and the beautiful ornaments!

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  34. Like both cards but especially the blue one with the fir branches and ornaments . . . Nice!

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  35. Lovely cards. Love the snowmen friends.

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  36. Your cards are awesome! I struggle with backgrounds and yours are just incredible

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  37. Wonderful cards! Love the pink background for the snowmen!

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  38. I love the pinks and purples for Christmas! Even the cold snowman seems warm! ♥️

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  39. Your cards are wonderful I love the colors you picked. They really are beautiful. Thanks

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  40. Love your cards as always but the snowmen are my fav. So super cute.

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  41. Great backgrounds and love the cute snowmen.
    slrdowney at hotmail dot com

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  42. Fantastic cards! The first is so sweet with those adorable and beautifully colored snowman. The second is so simply elegant. Fabulous background techniques on both.

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  43. Your Christmas cards are stunning! Thank you for sharing how you made them.

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  44. You’ve made two beautiful cards !! They’re pretty different but both backgrounds are absolutely fantastic ! I love the cuteness of the snowmen along with the gorgeous color combo on the first card. And I love the more traditional look and CAS style of the second one. Thanks for this inspiring work !
    [margessw(at)icloud(dot)com]

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