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Polka Dot Rosie

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Phineas and Ferb Bday Party--Oriental Trading Product Review

Hi there!  Today I'm excited to tell you about the fun that we had for my son's fifth birthday! We had a fantastic time and had all kinds of cute decorations from Oriental Trading (love that place!) to help set the mood.  I was provided products for the purpose of this review and am excited to share my experiences on them! Keep in mind that these opinions and experiences are mine and don't necessarily reflect everyone else's :) Oriental Trading is an exciting place to shop and their website is so darn easy to navigate! They have all kinds of ideas for most things imaginable and the prices are very reasonable. Check them out!

After browsing the wide selection, we decided that a Phineas and Ferb birthday party would be perfect this year. It's a very creative, fun show that my family enjoys watching, so we felt it was a good fit.  Oriental Trading had a great selection of their products, so we were very happy, and what's MORE important is that my kiddo was super happy too :)                                                         
                             
Check out these great decorations!
          Please note that  a cupcake ring made it's way into
                                                                                        the photo and that it's not a part of the package. 


After doing a lot of searching and narrowing down choices, I decided to order the following items:

Phineas and Ferb Invitations
Pin the Tail on Perry
Phineas and Ferb Candles
Table Decorating Kit

The invitations were just so cute! I like to make my own cards, but there was no way that I would be able to produce something like this and I thought they were the perfect way to announce the party. Agent P is the birthday boy's favorite character, so it was a no brainer :)  Invitations set the tone for the party, so I wanted something fun, cheery and thematic, and they absolutely fit the bill.



I love surprise images on the inside of cards! My son didn't color this image, but it would have been a great way to personalize each one :)



I really like to brighten up tables and space at parties and the table decorations were a perfect way to accomplish that! They were very cute and the little die cuts gave the kids who ate their cupcakes way too fast something to play with while they were waiting for everyone else to finish :) To my surprise no one played with the fun, inviting stand ups! I thought for sure they would be the first ones floating around the room, but they stayed put on the table while the kids reached for the little die cuts. I am so happy that we got these, by the way! They were so cute and added an extra level of cheer to the party. They were sturdy, easy to put up and take down, and they folded easily for storage.  There were a lot of decorations in the bag and they covered about 15' of rectangular tables without being crowded or looking sparse.  The Agent P decoration was about 12 1/2" high and the Phineas and Ferb decorations were 7" high.  I apologize for so much blank space in the photos. I didn't want to get crop-happy because I thought the die cuts were too cute to cut out!

















The candles were sturdy and had fun shapes, but I would have preferred if they were all the different characters rather than objects.  The largest one had two bumps on the bottom to hold it in place, but the others were just flat, so they didn't stick in as easily causing it to be difficult to get a decent picture of them in the cupcakes.  I wasn't sure if they would fall off or make it through the gathering of kiddos, singing, and blowing out candles, but they did without falling over too much! I put them in at an angle and rested them on top of a dollop of icing and I think that helped a bit. Although not my favorite, I got no complaints, they served their purpose, were solid and smooth, and I liked the way they felt (weird I'm sure LOL).

After all the fun of eating cupcakes, it was time to open presents. If you know my son, you know that this takes a while. A. Long. While.  A lot of his guests were crowded around him while he opened every last card and package, smiling and laughing at all the great presents he received. It was truly a beautiful sight :)  When we finished with presents and everyone got a giant THANK YOU, it was time for one game before packing up and heading home.

I was so excited about this game!

Pin the Tail on Perry was so much fun and quite hilarious!  It came with a cute poster, eight face masks, and 8 tails. There were ten kids at the party so I decided to make a few more tails out of orange cardstock because I wasn't sure if I would need more in case one got ruined or the older kids wanted to join in.

One thing that I didn't really like was that the tails were actually stickers so if you used them as such, the game could never be used again. In addition, in all my years attending celebratory parties, I have seen many people start to put their tail (or whatever they were pinning) on the poster, but change their mind at the last second and move it.  If we used these as stickers, where they stuck, they stuck and couldn't be removed. To get around this was very simple...we used double sided tape instead of the stickers and it worked out great!

One thing to keep in mind is to put the poster lower to the ground because little bodies can't reach as high as adults can. We had this party at a venue for kids where the teenage employees do everything for you, which is nice, but at the same time it kind of drives me crazy because there were certain things that I wanted a certain way.  They were a great group of workers and made the party fun, so I can't complain about much.  Anyway, back to my point....they put the poster high enough for taller people to reach so the kids had to reach up to put it in place.  I even had to pick up one of the three-year-old guests who was struggling to reach so he could put it in the right place LOL


Aren't these hilarious?!? I LOVED the expressions on these face masks!!! The kids looked so cute and silly in them :)  It's amazing how eyes can transform someone's face, even if they're cardboard cutouts!  Having said that, the masks must have been a little too thick and didn't mold easily to their faces because four out of eight children put the tail EXACTLY where it should have gone LOL.   Either they were very intuitive five-year-olds or they could see out of them ;)




These kids were AH-MAZING pinners ;)  It's difficult to tell from the photo, but four tails were stacked on top of each other in the right spot!  My son was the first who did it and exclaimed that he was going to get the prize because he was the winner LOL



What a fun time!!  Everything went fantastic and everyone had a great time! Overall I'm very happy with the party supplies from Oriental Trading! Nothing fell apart, the colors and quality were great, nothing was torn upon arrival, there were no surprises with the actual product looking different than the packaging. And what's best is that the prices are some of the best I've seen! I'm one very happy Mommy to one very happy five-year-old! 

Thanks for spending part of your day with me! Have a great one!






Wednesday, October 29, 2014

DigiStamps4Joy Challenge #103--Anything Goes!

Hello, hello! I am so very happy to share the exciting news that I have been one of the lucky ladies picked to hold a spot on DigiStamps4Joy's Design Team!! This is going to be an awesome adventure and I'm very much looking forward to the ride :)  The journey has just begun, but I have already met many wonderful ladies who are talented, supportive and encouraging!  If you haven't heard of DigiStamps4Joy, you should definitely check them out. They have hundreds of great digital images in their store just waiting to be printed and colored. There are new designs coming out every week, and they also have great challenges to play along with :) You should stop by and submit something this week! 

This week's challenge is Anything Goes!  I haven't done anything with a creepy factor since I started making cards, so I thought this Steampunk Spider would be so cool! I loved how robotic he looked and it made sense to use him since my son has become very interested in Transformers and robots lately, and he has a deep love of any and every kind of  creepy crawly creature.  I thought this would be fun to give to him with a little present tucked inside :)




I took a different route this time by making a bag (tutorial to come) and not a card.  I printed the spider and colored it with Copics, then fussy cut it out.  I  added Liquid Pearls and *LOVE* the way it turned out! It adds some shine, depth and interest, and I must say it's quite captivating in real life :) While letting it dry, I came up with the idea of adding the little ivory piece to resemble a flap because it just wasn't working without something solid and lighter behind the spider. After the Liquid Pearls dried, I adhered it to the front of the bag with dimensional tape, and I was finished!

Supplies:
Steampunk Spider (digistamps4joy image)
Neenah Solar White Cardstock
We R Memory Keepers Bag Punch Board
We R Memory Keepers Corner Chomper
Ranger Liquid Pearls (Dark Chocolate, Silver Pearl, Onyx Pearl, White Opal)
Foam Tape
Ivory Cardstock
My Mind's Eye cardstock
Copics (N 0; 2; 4; 6)

Thanks so much for spending part of your day with me today! I hope you enjoyed your stay!

Sunday, October 26, 2014

Give Thanks--NON8 Card Challenge

Hi friends! I have mentioned in the past that I just LOVE Naughty or Nice Challenges and today is no exception!  They have a great group of ladies over there who make it so much fun :)  If you haven't already done so, you should check them out!

I have an easy peasy card for you today but thought it fit perfectly with this month's challenge--giving thanks!  I really love cards that make you giggle and hope you enjoy it!


There are just a few steps in this card but that's perfectly OK! Sometimes you don't need to put a ton of time and supplies  into a card.  I just love how simple and fun it is!  Although it could be used for a man or a woman, men tend to like more simple things in life, and this definitely fits the bill. Simple, no frills, and beer, so what's not for a man to love?!

SUPPLIES:

Beer Mug Stamp (I have no idea what brand b/c it was an old yard sale find!)
Inkadinkado Kid Phrases
Copic YR21
Neenah Solar White Cardstock

Thanks so much for stopping by!

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

White Embossed Hydrangea with Watercolor

Hello, friends! Today I wanted to share a beautiful card I made using watercolor and white embossing powder. I just love this card and think the simplicity of it is what makes it so beautiful.


I started off by rubbing my anti-static on white cardstock before stamping my hydrangea stamp with Versamark Ink and heat setting it with white embossing powder.  I colored the image with my AMAZING Koi Watercolor set using two shades of green and one shade of purple. I made different shades by adding more or less water, depending on what I wanted.  Adding more water will make the color lighter; adding less water will make it darker. I really do love this watercolor set.  It's compact but has a wide variety of colors that seem to last forever, and comes with a water brush and mixing tray.  It's a lot of fun to play with :)

After painting the hydrangea, I set it aside to dry for a couple of hours. I wanted to make sure it was nice and dry before die cutting it so the colors didn't smear. I have done that before and it was so frustrating because I have found no way to save it after the damage has been done! This die was very intricate and removing the paper was tricky on the parts that had little curly q's, so I had to be very careful and move slowly.  Using wax paper usually helps remedy this problem, but I didn't have any an hand, so I went without it. Mental note to use it next time for sure, just to make it a little easier :)

I covered my cardstock in lilac paper and adhered the die cut with dimensional adhesive. And that is that :)  It wasn't a complicated card, but many times, the simple cards are just as beautiful!



Neenah Solar White Cardstock
Spellbinders Nestabilities Majestic Elements Adorning Squares
Heat Tool
Dimensional Adhesives
Lilac Colored Cardstock
Koi Watercolor Pocket Field Sketch Box
White Embossing Powder
Hydrangea Stamp

Thanks for spending part of the day with me!

Friday, October 10, 2014

Retirement Card Using Watercolor and Copics

Hello,  hello! If you frequently follow my blog, you may remember me talking about my friends Nick and Angie at some point.  I love hearing from Nick because not only his he a great conversationalist, but he usually has a fun challenge for me.  He's the one that always says "Hey, I need a card for xyz. Can you do it?" 

Duh. Yes. Yes, I can.

For this card, Nick's childhood dentist was retiring. He also happened to be Nick's kid's dentist, so of course he thought fondly of the man.  He wanted a special card to send to him and the inside had to be roomy enough for a lengthy, yet beautiful, message. This fit the bill:


I love this little guy, especially on retirement cards. He's just adorable and the sentiment is so appropriate!   In the beginning, I wasn't exactly sure how I was going to make it a larger card. I didn't want too much going on in the background since I loved the image so much, so I decided to cut a huge piece of watercolor paper and try a watercolor background, and would worry about the size later.

I smooshed Broken China and Squeezed Lemonade Distress Ink on my craft sheet, then sprayed really liberally with water. It was a giant puddle at this point and the colors started to mix together. I put the watercolor paper in the ink and moved it around to make sure it had good coverage.  If I missed any spots, I just dabbed the white spots in more ink.  I let this piece dry for a while and started working on the little boy.

He's stamped on Nina Solar White cardstock and I matched the colors of his clothes to the colors in the background.  After it was all colored, I cut it out with a die and sat it aside.

For the card base, I folded an 8 12" x 11" piece of cardstock in half, then made sure that the edge of the die was just a little bit HIGHER than the fold of the paper so that it kept that shape when it was folded.  I then used the same die to cut out the watercolor paper and adhered it to the base.  It's always a good idea to move the die around or put the layers in place before you die cut it because the look with watercolor can vary so much. Since the die was higher than the card base, some of it was cut off, but that's OK because it's completely covered by the piece of watercolor paper and you'd never know unless you looked at the back.

Next I added the little boy to the watercolor and ta-da! Job well done! Nick was thrilled and since it was larger than an A2 card, he had plenty of room to write his message. 

Here is a list of my supplies:

Copic Markers (Hair: E50, 53, 55; Skin: E 000, 00, 02, R20; Pants: B 93,95,97; Shirt: Y 2,6,8; Car: YG 03, 05; Keys: YR18; Shoes: N 0, 2)
Distress Ink (Broken China and Squeezed Lemonade)
Nina Solar White Cardstock
Strathmore Watercolor Paper
Daddy's Shoes by Stamping Bella
Spellbinders Nestabilities Mega Die Set Labels 8

Thanks so much for stopping by! See you next week!

Thursday, October 2, 2014

Iron Technique and Exciting News!

Hello out there! It has been far too long! We've had some problems with our internet acting up and suddenly had a TON of unexpected things going on. Life happens ;)  

I made a pack of cards for my mom's coworker who retired and this happened to be one of the ones I came up with. I actually started off with the rainbow background and let it sit for weeks not knowing what I was going to do with it.  I bought this sunflower stamp at Hobby Lobby months prior but hadn't had the chance to use it yet. I had forgotten all about it, but once I dug it up and started coloring it, it hit me that I was using the same colors as the background I had made weeks before! I put them together and really dig the result!



I used the iron technique on the background and really think it's one of my favorite techniques to do because it's just so much fun and the results are so cool!  It's like a science experiment the way the colors blend and change.  

First, I stamped a chevron background stamp onto watercolor paper, then heat embossing it with clear embossing powder. 

After all of the powder was melted, I took distress ink and smeared them all over the paper.  This could be accomplished a few ways: using a sponge or dauber, a blending tool, a paintbrush, or the ink pad. For this card, I wanted a more vibrant look, so I smeared the ink pad directly onto the paper.  It rarely looks fantastic in the beginning and sometimes it looks flat out terrible, but after spraying it with water and letting it dry, magic happens. Sometimes it turns out awful, but most times, it just has this really cool blended look to it.  I like to experiment to see what colors I like and seem to gravitate toward rainbow colors or different shades of the same colors.  

The last step with the iron technique is literally doing what the name says: iron the card. I like to make sure it's good and dry, so I let it sit overnight before doing this step.  Before ironing, I think it's best to put a scrap piece of paper over the ink then iron over it to lift off the embossing powder. You don't have to do this step, but it's fun and it wouldn't quite be the iron method if you didn't ;)  The embossing powder resists the water and ink, and when you iron that off, you're left with a flat background.  All of the parts that were covered with embossing powder are now the color of the paper you were using because you removed all of it.  It's really so much fun and it's like Christmas waiting for the final results :)

I stamped and colored the sunflower with Copics before fussy cutting it and adhering it to the background. I chomped the corners and added the little "thank you" sentiment on the bottom with dimensional adhesive, and that was that! I considered putting a little bow or ribbon on it but I really loved the CAS design so I stuck with it.

List of Supplies:
Stampin' Up Positively Chevron Background Stamp
Recollections White Embossing Powder
Iron
Versamark
Strathmore Watercolor Paper
Distress Inks (Barn Door, Spiced Marmalade, Squeezed Lemonade, Mowed Lawn)
Copic Markers
Scissors
Sincere Salutations Stampin' Up
Tombo Mono Multi Glue
Foam Dimensional Dots
EK Success Real Estate Sign Punch
We R Memory Keepers Corner Chomper
Heat Tool
Spray Bottle
Water
Perfect Pearls


Thanks so much for sharing part of your day with me! I have some exciting product reviews coming up in the near future, so stay tuned!