Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Susan's Garden Cattleya

 Did you ever think you could easily create an orchid out of card stock?  Susan's Garden Cattleya (orchid) dies make this very easy and they are so beautiful.  To learn how to create this flower, you can watch Susan Tierney-Cockburn's Cattleya Video at this link.  I love that Susan has taken the time to create videos for us so we can understand all the steps for creating each of her flowers. 

For the background on this 6x6" card, I used The Crafter's Workshop Mini Leaf Frame Template.  The Savvy "Valentine Heart" was die cut and glued to the center.  The Savvy die cut Cupid was added above the flowers.

 To get started, I die cut all the pieces to create six Cattleya.  Susan explains, in detail,  how to color and shape all the pieces on her video.  I like to have all my flower pieces completed before I start assembly. 

Here is a closeup picture of my Cattleya.

You can purchase your Susan's Garden dies and products from Ellen Hutson, LLC.

Here are links to the products I used:


Monday, January 27, 2014

Ladybug Vase with Susan's Garden Spring Flowers

 My garden is in bloom with flowers created with Susan's Garden flower dies.  I recently found a very cute Ladybug Vase at my Florist and knew it would be fun to fill it with my own flowers.

 This is the front of the vase.  It stands 7" tall.

 And this is the back.  I placed (wedged) a green styrofoam ball in the opening to hold the stems.

I used the following Susan's Garden flower dies to create my bouquet of red Tulipsyellow Daffodils, purple Lilies, Mini Daisies, and Violets All the flowers were created on a piece of 18 gauge wire to create a stem. I used the Tim Holtz Die Pick Paper Punch to punch a hole in the center of each calyx before I created the flower.  (The calyx was shaped (cupped) first.)  I then added Ultimate Glue to one end and pushed it down through the hole.  Only a tiny portion of the wire is left above the base (on the inside).  When the glue dries, it will hold the wire in place.  This will not show once you add the stamen.  I poked the wires in the styrofoam, in the vase, to allow them to dry before adding petals.

This picture shows the calyx (base) for the mini daisy glued to the end of a wire stem.  As soon as the glue was dry, I added the petals to create the little daisies.  This is how the stems were created for all the flowers.  The wires were pulled out to add the daisy petals.

Have you tried creating a bouquet with your flower dies?

You can purchase your Susan's Garden Flower Dies from Ellen Hutson, LLC.

Here are the direct links to each flower and product used:


Thursday, January 23, 2014

Lily Project

 After creating my lilies, I did not complete my project to show you how pretty they will look on a card or box.  I had received a called that my sister was being taken to the hospital with a heart attack.  The good news is she did not have a heart attack and is ok.  Yesterday I completed this project and thought I would share it with you today.  I decided to decorate a box.  I combined the pretty Susan's Garden Lilies with three sprigs of Susan's Garden Forsythia.  What a pretty combination.  I added some additional embellishments to complete the box.

Here is another angle so you can see the dimension of the Lilies.  In case you missed it, I posted a tutorial yesterday on how I created these Lilies.

The products I use can be purchased from Ellen Hutson, LLC.  Here are the links to the two flower dies I used in this project:

Susan's Garden, Lily dies
Susan's Garden, Forsythia dies


Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Susan's Garden Lily Tutorial

 I had a request to do a tutorial creating Lilies using the Susan's Garden Lily dies. This is a six petal flower with a beautiful stamen.  I suggest you watch Susan Tierney-Cockburn's  Lily video at this link for step-by-step instruction.  Below I have taken pictures for you, as I was working on my flowers.

 Lilies come in many different colors.  For this tutorial I have created pink lilies.

 All the dies, to complete this flower, comes in the Susan's Garden Lily Seed packet.

 I like to die cut most of my flowers using white card stock so I can color them to get pretty, soft colors.  We are told we should use odd numbers when designing and I am able to layer three pieces of #80 card stock over the dies to die cut three sets at one time.

I used the leaf tool in the Susan's Garden Flower Tool Kit to create lines on each petal.  There is a long line from top to bottom, which is drawn on the back of the petal, then I turned it over and drew some short lines from the base of the petal, as shown in the picture above.

For this pink lily, I wanted to add some coloring to make it look realistic.  I started by using Susan's Garden, Bright Pink Pastel at the base of each petal.

 I love working with Pan Pastels because they blend together so well for a very realistic look.  This bright pink was a little too bright, so I used the light pink and blended it all over the bright pink to soften it.  The light pink was applied over the entire petal.
 Next I wanted to add just a touch of yellow at the base, so I added the bright yellow, blending it in well.

In this picture you can see the difference it made by adding a little yellow to the base.  I then blended in the yellow better by going over it with the light pink Pan Pastel again.  All this blending created a very realistic looking petal.  (I know, sometimes I take extra steps when working on my flowers, but in the end I think it is well worth it.  It only takes a couple of seconds of extra work to create something very realistic!  Try blending your Pan Pastels, I'm sure you will love the effect.)

 A lot of lilies have "freckles".  I used a magenta fine tip marker to add small freckles at the base of each petal.  The middle row does not have freckles. 

 There are three leaf dies in the package.  Add some character to your leaves, as shown on the left side, by shaping them with the tools in the Flower Tool Kit.  Draw a line down the back side then use the small loop tool to give them some "curl".

 One of the tips Susan gives us, is to shape the calyx (base) with the medium stylus to cup it.  The reason you do this is to have a nice "fluffy"  (dimensional) flower, which looks much better than a flat flower.  She tells us to hold the center of the calyx down with the point of the leaf tool and start adding the flower petals.  You gently wiggle the petal on the point making sure not to press it flat.  This little tip does make a big difference in having a well shaped flower.

 To assemble your flower, first add three petals, then go back and add the other three petals.  The gives more dimension to your flower.

For the stamen, I cut each point in half down to the base, then rolled it.  The tips were dipped in Susan's Garden Pink Pollen.  As soon as the six petals were glued to the calyx, I placed them in the Susan's Garden Flower Trays to dry.  This helps keep the petals pushed up while the flower is drying.  You receive 5 trays, each holding 4 flowers so you can work on a number of flowers at the same time.  If you don't place the wet (glued) flowers in the cups, the petals seems to slowly start falling down, which will leave you with a flatter flower. Once the flowers are dry, add the leaves and you are ready to decorate your card or project.

 I love how realistic Susan's Garden flowers look.

You can create these gorgeous flowers too.   I hope this tutorial gives you inspiration to create your lilies.

You can purchase all your Susan's Garden flower dies and products from Ellen Hutson, LLC.

Here are direct links to products I used:

Susan's Garden, Lily Dies
Susan's Garden, Flower Tool Kit
Susan's Garden, Flower Trays
Susan's Garden, Pan Pastels 
PanPastel Sofft Tools
Susan's Garden, Pollen
Ultimate Glue


Saturday, January 18, 2014

Susan's Garden Daffodils

 One of the first flowers to bloom in the Spring are the daffodils.  I had a request from MarieL to do a tutorial on how to create flowers using Susan's Garden Daffodil dies.  As I have said many times before, some beautiful flowers look very complicated to create but that is not so when you use the dies designed by Susan Tierney-Cockburn.  To watch Susan create this beautiful flower, step by step, I watched her Daffodil video at this link. You will find it very easy to follow along, and I know you will be able to create these beautiful flowers too.

After watching Susan's video, I die cut enough pieces to create three daffodils.  I used yellow card stock for the flower petals and stamen, and white card stock to die cut the base (calyx ) and leaves using white card stock.  You need to color the calyx with markers, as shown in Susan's video. so the center of the daffodil will be yellow like the flower petals.  I like to color leaves using several different colors of green.  For the tips of the stamens, I used Susan's Garden Yellow Pollen. Susan's Pollens have a very fine texture and resemble real pollen.

 I know I talk about this all the time, but the new tools that come in the Susan's Garden Tool Kit are so important to me to shape flowers, to make them realistic.  As Susan did, I used the loop tool to create shape to the large petal of the daffodil.  See how it created the "ruffle" lines for shaping.   (I didn't notice until just now that the loop tool rolled over in this picture.  You want the tip of this tool facing up.)  If you just use a stylus, you don't get the lines this loop tool creates, plus this tool also helps create a better shaping curl for both petals and leaves.

 Susan doesn't show putting a stem on her daffodils, but I thought it would look good because I was putting the flowers on the top of a box.  I used a wrapped florist wire and poked it through the center of the calyx.  It has lots of glue on the tip to hold it in place.  You should let it dry before adding your flower.

Once you have your die cuts shaped, it goes together very quickly.  You assemble the flower by first adding the small petals to the calyx, add the large center petal, then the stamen.  The Ultimate Glue is kind of thick and dries pretty fast.  It is the perfect glue for creating your flowers.

 You can see inside the flowers a little better in this picture.  Doesn't it look real!

Here are the three Daffodils I completed.

When decorating a card, or any project, it is always fun to add with a variety of flowers.   To decorate the brown wicker box, I added the Susan's Garden Daffodils, a spring of Susan's Garden Forsythia, and some Susan's Garden Violets.  A few other embellishments were pulled out of my stash and added to complete the box.  

 I know you will have fun creating these beautiful flowers.

Here are the links at Ellen Hutson, LLC for the products I used:


Thursday, January 16, 2014

Susan's Garden Fuchsia

 When I started creating flowers, out of card stock, I never dreamed I would be able to create a Fuchsia.  Every Spring I look forward to getting a large hanging basket of Fuchsia for my front porch.  They are so beautiful.  Susan Tierney-Cockburn has developed Fuchsia dies, gives us instructions, and has a video to help us create her very realistic Fuchsia flowers.  The instructions for creating the flower are included in the Fuchsia die package, and here is the link to her Fuchsia video.  Once you watch her step by step video, you will find it is very easy to assemble these beautiful flowers. 

In this picture I am showing the plain bird cage and all the shaped Susan's Garden  Fuchsia flower pieces I will be using to decorate the bird cage.  I find it helpful to have all the pieces colored and shaped before I start assembling each individual flower.

I found it is important to watch Susan's video for easy assembly.  The first time I created this flower, the video was not published and I have to tell you that it was much easier this time following her steps, than trying to figure it out on my own.    In this picture, you can see the calyx (base) glued together with the wire inserted.  Starting with this step, you get perfect flowers every time!  I know you will enjoy creating this beautiful flower.  The Fuchsia comes in many different colors.  This bright pink and purple happens to be my favorite.

Here is another picture of the Fuchsia on top of the cage. Don't they look realistic!   I have added a flameless candle in the bottom and surrounded it with a variety of other Susan's Garden flowers.  The small flowers added are:  small roses created with "Mini Petals"; Mini Lilies; "Violets", and mini daises. 

You can order your Susan's Garden Products from Ellen Hutson, LLC.  Here are the links to the products I used today:

Susan's Garden, Fuchsia
Susan's Garden, Mini Petals
Susan's Garden, Mini Lilies
Susan's Garden, Pansy/Violets
Susan's Garden, Mini Daisies
Susan's Garden, Flower Tool Kit
Susan's Garden, Pan Pastels
Susan's Garden, Pollen
Ultimate Glue


Sunday, January 12, 2014

My Die Cut Storage Area

I have had a few questions about how I store my dies and the extra die cuts.  I promised to take a few pictures and post them to show how I organize my dies and die cuts.  This is a picture of the area where I store my card stock, dies, die cuts and off to the right my embossing folders.  In the light blue notebooks, I store my dies by company and category.  I use the Martha Stewart notebooks and clear storage sheets you can purchase from Staples.  I use magnetic vent covers, cut to size, for the pockets in the notebooks, to hold the dies.  Back in November, 2012 I posted information about how I store my dies in the Martha Stewart notebooks.  You can see that post at this link.  My die collection has greatly grown since then!

The Susan's Garden dies comes in uniform plastic "Seed Packets" that store the dies and instructions.  I purchased a storage box that is 6" wide by 11" long to store these packets.  They are filed in alphabetical order. 

 I purchased two of these storage cabinets, each with 24 drawers measuring 4-1/2" x 5-1/2".  There is one drawer for each of the Susan's Garden flowers.  They are labeled in alphabetical order going across.  I have room for the new release that will be out next month.    When I die cut, I usually like to die cut a lot of pieces and all the left overs are stored here.  There are extra die cuts for every flower.  Some flowers are just die cut pieces and some I have colored and shaped.  It is so nice to have them stored like this. 

For my other dies, I have another storage system for extra die cuts.  They are stored in drawers labeled by categories.  By neatly storing extra die cut, it can sometime save a lot of time.  Sometimes I just go through these extra die cut and and come up with a neat layering design I would never of have thought of. 

It is always interesting to see how other people organize their things.  Do you have a special way to store your dies and die cuts?  I would love to read your comments.

Thanks for stopping by today. 

You can go to Ellen Hutson, LLC to this link to see all the Susan's Garden Flower dies I have in my collection.  Be sure to scroll down to see the entire collection.  If you would like for me to do a tutorial on any of these flowers, please leave a comment below.

Sizzix, Susan's Garden Flower Dies


Saturday, January 11, 2014

Ice Skates

 Have you ever recycled old Christmas cards to create some thing new?  When I received this Christmas card I knew it would be a perfect background for the Sizzix Ice Skates.
Sizzix Tim Holtz, Bigz Die, Ice Skates
I love these die cut Tim Holtz, Ice Skates.  This die was so popular that it was out of stock for a while but it is now back in stock at Ellen Hutson, LLC.  There are so many things I think I will be able to do with them.  They can be used for beautiful Christmas cards but also for  Winter birthday or thank you cards.

Here is a picture of the recycled Christmas card I used for the background.

My recycled card turned into this.   First the card was cut down a little then I die cut a frame to go around it.  This is a Spellbinder frame.  Next I die cut the skates.  These are easy to color and then lace up.  There are slits so you can add string for laces.  Ellen has a large variety of cords/twines you can use for laces.   I used Vintage Photo Distress Ink to sponge around the edges of the shoe and colored the heel and sole with the Vintage Photo Distress Marker. Silver paint was added to the blades.  A piece of twine was tied in a bow and a pair of Memory Box, Jolly Jingle Bells, were added.  The bells were die cut using silver card stock.  The ice Skates were attached with pop-dots over the background.  In the upper corner a holly die cut was added and scattered across the top of the card are some punched snow flakes left from a Martha Stewart border punch.  To add some sparkle to the picture, I added "Icicle" Stickles.

You can purchase the following products from Ellen Hutson, LLC by clicking on the links below:


Friday, January 10, 2014

Quince and Cherry Blossom Tutorial

Aren't the Quince flowers beautiful!   Below I have a tutorial on how to create both the Quince and Cherry Blossoms using Susan's Garden Flowering Quince dies. Susan Tierney-Cockburn not only designed beautiful flower dies which have instructions in each package, she also has step by step videos to help us create very realistic flowers.  Here is the link for the Quince video.

 I am always happy if I can create many different flowers with one set of dies.  With the Susan's Garden  Flowering Quince dies, we can also create pretty Cherry Blossoms.

Before I begin, I want to talk a little about the tools in the Susan's Garden Flower Tool Kit. Every thing you need is in this kit.  It contains the shaping mat, leaf shaping pad, non-stick sheet, scissors, self-closing tweezers, and three shaping tools - everything you need to shape and create your beautiful flowers.    The tool on top, in the above picture, is used for creating realistic lines in your  leaves.  I have put a piece of card stock under the tip so you can see the special design. You use this tool on the light green shaping mat that is in the kit. This pad has just the right cushion to create realistic veins on your leaves.   On the other end of this tool is a small stylus. 

The middle tool is one I almost always use to shape petals and leaves.  There is a small loop tool on one end and a larger loop tool on the other end.  The tool on the bottom has a medium and a large stylus end.  These can also be used for shaping or just conditioning the card stock. 

 To create the Quince, I shaded the base of the petals then shaped each one with the small loop tool.  I like to start from the very edge of the petal and pull toward the base, with the petal on the brown shaping mat. If you start just above the petal edge and draw it down, it will kind of curl the edge for a ruffle effect

 Here are the shaped pieces for the Quince.  Notice I cut down each leg of the stamen piece to give it a more frilly look.  I used a Copic marker to color the tips.

 The Quince has five petals.  This is a picture of the petals glued to the calyx (base).  Once they are assembled and dried, I like to go back with the small stylus and press down in the center, on the shaping mat,  to help cup (shape) them more. The two flowers on the right side have not been re-shaped.

In this picture I am gluing the stamens in the center of the flowers.  You can also see the nice shape of each flower.

 In the Quince die set,  you will find one petal shaped like this - it looks like two connected petals.  I used this piece to create buds and also used it to add additional petals in the center of the Cherry Blossoms.

 To create the bud, I used three of the "double" petals.  When you use the loop tool, it curls the petal more than if you are using just the stylus.  Draw the loop tool down from the top of each petal a couple of times and it will curl and cup the piece as you can see in the above picture.

 I use The Ultimate Glue to assemble the flowers.  I am working on the non-stick pad that comes in the Susan's Garden Flower Tool Kit.  To create the bud, you will need a piece of wire.  I am using a cloth covered wire you can get at the craft store.  It comes on a spool.

 After the petals were colored, shaped and the stamen is colored and each leg cut, I added glue to the base of each petal and along the bottom of the stamen.  You will need to work quickly, but I found it easier to add the glue to all pieces before I started putting the bud together.  Add a little glue to the tip of the wire and roll the stamen base around it. 

Next start adding the three petals, one at a time around the stamen, alternating the petals. You can form them in closely next to the stamen for a tight bud or more loosely for a slightly open bud.

 Every bud will probably turn out different, but it will look something like this.

Here is a picture of the finished Quince, buds, and leaves that were attached to a  wired sisal rope.  The Wired Sisal Rope was purchased at Hobby Lobby.  The leaves are from the Susan's Garden, Garden Leaves Dies.

 To create a Cherry Blossom, I created the flower just like the Quince using five petals. To shade the base of each petal, I used Susan's Garden Bright Pink Pan Pastel.   It is a more frilly flower than the Quince.   To create this fullness,  I shaped two of the "double leaf" die cut petals and added them to the center of the flower.

 I alternated the petals that were added in the center.

 For the stamen, I cut down each leg of the die cut rolled it and added Susan's Garden Pollen to the tips. 

I hope this information will help you create your Quince, Cherry Blossoms, and buds for both the Quince and Cherry Blossom.  Be sure to watch Susan's video for more information on how to create the Quince.

All these products can be purchased from Ellen Hutson, LLC:



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