Creating Your Own Craft Dies!

(This post was originally published in April, 2016.)

Over the years I have collected an assortment of crafting dies. When SpellBinders came out with their thin dies I was so intrigued with the many shapes they offered. I selected some basic shapes I thought I would use and soon found myself purchasing smaller label shaped dies.  (I know many of you have your own collections of die cuts too!)

When I create my cards, I usually use border shaped dies and labels. The stamps I use for the greeting are usually put on a popped up label, with a background label to accent it. Sometimes the next sized die is a bit bigger for my needs.  So, I discovered a way to create a die that is my right size. I thought I would share my little discovery with you!

using die cuts to fit your projects, created by HorseMark Cards

I simply cut out another die that I already used for the stamped greeting. Then I cut that die in half, so as to stretch it out to fit both ends of my original die cut message. I attach each piece to the message and I have a background accented greeting that is the perfect size!   Sometimes I just cut out the same  shape in the next size and us it as an added background. I think it adds a new dimension to the card. (I chose not to use the bigger background on this card as I thought it was too large.)

thinking of you card with die cut flowers and greeting created by HorseMark Cards

Many of the dies today are sold in nesting groups so you won’t have to use this technique. However, some of the labels in my stash may need a little background help. This is also a great way to use paper scraps!

I also decided to use a Memory Box flower die to accent this card.  I popped it over an embossed background and am pleased with the results.  What do you think?

I hope this little trick is helpful to you the next time you need to have the perfect size background die for your project!

Enjoy your creative day and thank you for visiting!

~~ Vickie

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Moving On with the Move!

Hello!

Remember me? I know many of you do, since you have been visiting my blog even though I have neglected it for the past few months. I thank you for that!

Since September, life in the HorseMark Cards world has been very hectic. Between nursing a bum knee, celebrating birthdays and holidays, bringing in the New Year, and something else. Oh yea! We moved from our home we had for almost 20 years into a single level home about 17 miles away. No matter how many or few miles you move, the packing and unpacking process is a big one!

It is amazing how much you can accumulate over the years. We raised our two sons in our old home and since they both live in San Francisco, they have limited storage space. Guess where some of their stuff is! Sorting through things to decide what to keep or donate took an incredible amount of time.
But, I am happy to report that the process is about complete!

crafts, moving, embossing, decorative boxes

Once again, I am fortunate to have my own creative space to design my cards. It is the last room in our new home that has been unpacked. The time it takes to organize my supplies is another process altogether! Like many of you fellow crafters, I will probably rearrange things several times before deciding what works best. Then I will change it! Sound familiar to you?

Anyway, I just wanted to update you on why I have been in silent mode. I hope to be back in the blogging world soon! I have posted a few items on my Instagram if you want to follow me there! I also share creative ideas on my facebook page. Come on by for a visit!

Enjoy your creative day and I will see you soon!

Thanks! ~~~ Vickie ~~~

Creating Butterflies!

Hello & Thanks for visiting today!

Do you like butterflies? Many of my regular readers and followers know that I feature many types of colorful butterflies on several cards I create. I love them so much that I included one in my HorseMark Cards logo!

HorseMark Cards, custom handmade greeting cards,

The easiest way to create a butterfly is by using a butterfly punch or  die. These come in many different shapes and styles and can be used with colored or textured papers to created interesting butterflies.

Butterfly paper punches and dies, custom handmade cards created by HorseMark Cards

You can also place a die over the butterfly image on patterned papers to create a very different butterfly.  Place it over the same image or use it alone, either way works! I used this cute butterfly die from Elizabeth Craft Designs.
image

I added this pretty butterfly on the inside of the card. I added a solid base under the delicate butterfly to add some more dimension. Adding the little ‘fly dots’ makes it appear that this pretty butterfly flew on the card! It’s nice to open a card and also see something extra!

Butterflies on cards created by HorseMark Cards, using dies and paper punches

Another idea for adding a butterfly to your project is to use one of the many craft papers that feature butterflies. I like to fussy cut around the butterfly image. It can be layered on the same image to give it a different effect.

Card with butterflies created by HorseMark Cards, notecards, friendship cards

Many of the paper punches and dies of butterflies are smaller, so this is a great way to create several of them and use your scrap papers!

If you are going to give a card directly to your friend, instead of mailing it, you can also add some small butterflies on the envelope.  It adds a bit of fun!

Butterfly card created by HorseMark Cards, with decorative envelope, layering papers

I hope I have inspired you to create pretty butterflies for your projects!  They are perfect to include on many types of cards; note cards, sympathy cards, Mother’s Day cards, and birthday cards!  Butterflies can flutter anywhere!

If you would prefer to have me design a card, or two, with butterflies I would love it! Contact me at horsemarkcards@gmail.com and you will have your cards in a few days!

I appreciate you visiting my blog today!  Please visit HorseMark Cards on Instagram to see more card designs.

Enjoy your creative day!   ~ Vickie

 

Creating Paper Ornaments for Christmas Cards!

Hello Friends!

The first leaves have fallen from our trees, the mornings have started to be a bit cooler, costumes and candy are featured in the stores, and pumpkins are everywhere! And yes, there are Christmas trees with lights displayed in most stores. The holiday are coming! Many of us prepare for them a bit earlier than others, especially if we are creating handmade items. So, it is time for me to start creating some holiday cards!

It is a bit difficult to get into the holiday spirit when the sun is shining and we are still having warm days here in northern California. I needed to find a bit of inspiration. I started to browse through my Christmas papers and previous holiday cards I had created. Of course, checking for ideas online also got me into the holiday spirit. It’s amazing to see so many creative ideas and such talented people in our world! I would like to add a bit of my creativity to this festive season!

Christmas paper ornament made with label die

I had used my swirl die to create cards from old photographs and a thought occurred to me. I remember seeing some delicate, lace-like Christmas ornaments on a card I saw online. I didn’t bookmark it at the time, since I wasn’t in the Christmas mood. Anyway, I thought I would use this swirl die from Di-Namics along with a circle to create a Christmas ornament for a card. Since my swirl die was rather large, I added a smaller scalloped ‘ornament’, which has a shiny silver star in the middle. (My photography skills are still a work-in-progress.) This is the card I created.

Christmas cards, ornaments, using dies
Christmas card with ornaments created from dies.

Looking through my collection of dies to find other ideas for Christmas ornaments turned into a fun treasure hunt! These scalloped label dies from ‘Nellie’s Multi Frames‘ would make wonderful paper ornaments. These dies are small enough that you can use paper scraps! I layered some different papers together and I created these cards with them.

Christmas card with paper ornaments
Christmas card with ornaments created from label dies
Christmas card from HorseMark Cards, paper ornaments made with label dies
Christmas card created with label dies. Add gems to make them sparkle!

Since I create all the Christmas cards we send to our family and friends, I need to make simple cards. A card with a single ornament on the front would be a simple, yet nice card to send out for the holidays.

Christmas card created by HorseMark Cards, using paper scraps
A Simple Christmas Card

I used many types of papers and soon found myself having lots of fun deciding what kinds of ornaments I could make. This was also a great way to use some of the paper scraps I have leftover from previous projects! Now I’m in the holiday mood, and keeping very busy creating cards! I know you are all creating wonderful projects for the upcoming holidays too! I’m looking forward to seeing what ideas you have for this festive season!

Thanks for visiting today! Enjoy your creative time!

~ Vickie ~

Thank you card with snowflakes created by HorseMark Cards

Creating Seahorses and Seashells Greeting Cards!


 
When I first purchased my Cuttlebug die cutting and embossing machine many, many moons ago, I couldn’t wait to try all the new dies that were available for my new toy. One of the first theme sets I purchased were these two ‘under the sea’ dies.
 

horsemark cards, cuttlebug dies
 

I have used these for a few projects over the years, but they eventually found their place in the back of my die cut storage bin. When I found this pretty paper from SEI, I decided to take these lost dies and put them to use.
 

craft papers of seashells, horsemark cards, glittery papers
 

My Cuttlebug makes all sorts of grunting noises and the handle comes off if I don’t hold it just right when I’m using it. So, last year I decided it was time to upgrade to a Big Shot. Luckily, I am still able to use all of the Cuttlebug dies and embossing folders I had accumulated.

My old under the sea die cuts were used to create a birthday card for someone special that happens to live on a beach. How perfect is this?
 

birthday card with seahorse, seashells, beach themed cards, horsemark cards
 

Well, once I finished this card, I loved it so much that I had to make another one. This time I changed it and created a thank you card.
 

thank you card with seahorse, horsemark cards, card with seashells
 

I love the sparkly papers and enjoyed creating these two cards. I will be making more of these for sure. It was also nice to use some older products that had been forgotten for a bit.

Do you have any older products that need to be brought back to life? I’m sure you can come up with some creative ways to use them!

Enjoy your creative day! Thank you so much for your support of HorseMark Cards and my little blogging corner. I really appreciate you all!

~ Vickie

This post was shared on Inspiration Monday. Check out this blog for creative ideas!