Monday, June 28, 2021

Final Altenew Educator Certification Program (AECP) Assignment

Hello All! 

I hope this post finds you healthy, happy, safe, and of course crafting!  In today's post I am sharing my level three final project for my Altenew Educator Certification Program (AECP).  This took me  taken a lot longer that I expected, but you know life…   For my final project, I decided to make a card box.  The challenge to myself was to incorporate an Altenew stamp set with my card box.   I recently purchased Altenew’s Wild and Free stamp set, love, love, love it.   In my level three classes one of the inspiration projects used this stamp set.   It is such a fun and whimsical stamp set.   I love the open lines for colouring or just leaving as outlined image.   This stamp set was simply perfect for my project.   I hope you enjoy it as much I do. 

Making the BoxInstead of make the traditional cardstock box or buying a box from the craft store.  I made my box from scratch using my Laser Printer.   Last year I purchased a Glowforge Pro (GF) but never really did anything with it.  Just recently I started devoting more time to learning how to use it.    For this project I used some 1/8" Maple Wood (12” x 20” sheet), Adobe Illustrator (AI) and a box creating application.  I was able to create my box and engrave some of the images from the Wild and Free stamp set on my box.   

For the AI part: I designed my box template in the Box Design application to be 5” x 7” with a 2” depth and saved the design as a PDF file.    For the stamped images, I stamped the images with Altenew’s Obsidian Black Pigment Ink on to some white cardstock.  I left the images uncoloured.   Once the images were completely dried (pigment takes a little longer than dye ink to dry), I scanned the image into my computer and saved the image as an SVG file.  


I opened both the box template and the stamped image in AI.  I sized and positioned the image on the box sides panels.   The size of your image will depend on how large your box will be.    After I sized my image on the box, I added the “Just A Note” using a font in my computer font library.   To be able to print (engrave) text in the Glowforge (because I did not purchase their premium program at $50/month-NOT!) I had to change my text to a path outline.   I changed my text to an outline, grouped the text, the image, the box panels, and saved it in AI and as an SVG file.   I saved the project in AI just in case I need to make some changes or adjustments.      

Now we are ready to print (engrave and cut)I opened the SVG file up in the Glowforge application.  I used Glowforge proof grade materials, so I did not have to put in any unknown material settings.  If you use materials that they (Glowforge) have tested, the setting for that material is preset and guaranteed to perform as expected.  If I did not use proof grade material, I would have to tell the Glowforge what type of material I'm using, how fast to cut, how much power to use, how many lines per inch to print, and how many times to perform the task.  The wood is covered with masking paper to avoid or sometimes it just decreases the scorch marks from the Laser.  Below you can see the Glowforge engraving the one of the box panels, the template engraved and cut (or so I  You can see the scorch marks on the finish engraving and cutting.  Unfortunately, there was some "OPERATOR ERROR" on this one.  You can see the GF looked like it was cutting out the box template; however, it did not.  I for some reason had changed the settings (still scratching my head on that  So, yep, I had to do the whole thing all over (bummer).  After the box is engraved and cut, I removed the masking paper. As you can see, the masking paper was scotched not the finished wood.  This one came out okay, I'm pretty pleased with it.  I put the box together with some strong wood glue, clamped some places to hold the pressure, and and let it sit overnight until the glue dried.  


The pieces should just fall out but they did not, so I had to re-engrave and re-cut the project (sad face).

Note: You may notice the images look like they are white.  The colour is actually the masking tape.  It looked so nice and made the flowers and butterfly standout so well, I decided not to weed those pieces out.  I was going to attempt to colour them the same colours as the butterfly on the cards, but I didn’t want to mess the box up and have to start over again.

The cards:  I really loved the butterfly in the Wild andFree stamp set.  I used the butterfly with some of the sentiments from the stamp set to make a couple of note cards.   My note cards are standard A2 or 4 ¼”x 5 ½”.  I coloured the butterflies using Faber Castell Pencils, Gamsol, and a blending stump.  On the purple butterfly I just added some dots with a black pen.   For the Bluish-Green Butterfly I used some Altenew Sea Sure enamel dots in various sizes.   I added some Wink-of-Stella on both the butterflies to give a little bit of shimmer.   Note: I used small embellishments that I know would go through the U.S. Post Office Pitney Bowles machine for metering.

The envelopes:  I used my We R Memory Keepers Envelope Punch Board to make four envelopes.  I love white cards, so I created coordinating white envelopes for each card.  I tied them together by stamping the butterfly again and the large graphic text from the stamp set on the bottom left corners.   I used the bottom left corner so there is plenty of room for the standard "to" and "from" information, as well as the postage area.   For a different option I created plain colour matching envelopes.  

Here are some photos of the complete project:


Well party people this is my stop with the Altenew Educator Certification Program, but certainly not with using their amazing products.   I highly recommend the AECP if you can.  It is a good experience, and you will take away some valuable information to help you through out your craft journey.   Even if you don’t intend to teach, the classes are really good quality and highly informative.  

Til’ next time, Joyce

Monday, April 12, 2021

Cards in Motion


Hello and welcome back to my blog.  Today, I am going to share all five of my Altenew Educator Certification Program (AECP) level III cards and project.  I believe this is the last part before the certification (but I’m not for certain).   I am going to share them in five (5) different post, so if you are not busy get comfy and let’s get-it-in!  Level III is more relaxed in that you get to pick the classes you want to try as long as they are not classes that you have taken in the previous two (2) levels.  Altenew has a vast library of classes to choose from so you won’t have a problem finding something that piques your interest with great price points too.    I chose the following classes: Cards in Motion, Mixed Media for Memory Keeping, Stunningly Styled Stencils, Muse, and Monoprinting.   They were all a lot of fun and yes, I do recommend all of them.  For now, I left all the cards blank inside. 

My approach to the projects in this level was to go through all the classes first.  I took notes on things that I had forgotten about and tips I found helpful during the class.   After I went through each classes I started on the cards and had the classes up on the computer for reference.    My inspiration for the cards and page was a wide range from the class itself to my K-Pop world.     

The first card I did was for the Cards in Motion class.   There were several examples of cards with motion to choose from which was great.  I really like the shaker with the large window.   I used the Dearest Friend stamp set for my main image.   I like the open lines and the playful feeling of the stamp.  For the sentiment I used the Crafty Greetings stamps set.  The sentiment is stamp with Altenew’s ObsidianBlack Pigment ink.  I love the elegant font mixed with the printed words; the combination of the two fonts really animates your message.  The image is coloured with alcohol markers. 

Please enjoy a few photos of my completed card for the Cards in Motion class from Altenew.  If you are interested in learning more about Altenew products or any of the classes click HERE

Thank you for stopping, stay safe


Stunningly Styled Stencils


Alrighty, let’s keep this train rolling! We are checking out card number two (2) from my Altenew Educator Certification Program (AECP) level III class assignments.  This card is for the Stunningly Styled Stencils class.  Don’t you just love the name of the class?!  And these ladies did not disappoint.  I really like stenciling, but I always felt like they were so much work to achieve the beautiful results you often see in project and cards.  I think the problem was I was always rushing to complete the card or whatever I was working on.  Making this card was so enjoyable, which certainly encourages me to use my stencil more often.

I created the background for this card in no time!  A simple design with a bold statement.  My tip is to prepare everything you will need before you begin.  Everything from something to cover your fingers while you ink (to avoid aberrant smudges) to the damp cloth you’ll use to clean the stencil when you’re done.  If you are using a spray adhesive, include that prep as well.  Pre spray (prior to starting the project and while you are gathering the other items) your stencil in a well-ventilated area, so it can have time to be nice and tacky (sticky) when you are ready to use it.  I did this background in 10 minutes max with one attempt.  I am so please with the even distribution of ink across the card, this is thanks in part to Altenew’s Jet Black Crisp Dye Ink pad and their Chevrons Stencil.  I laid down a fairly good amount of ink and even when it dried back the colour did not fade out and lock splotchy.  To help keep my stencil secure, I used a TEMPORARY spray adhesive.  My inspiration for this card was the colours of my own crafting business which are Black, Pink, and White.  I also love the chevron pattern and wanted to make a card using that design.  I wanted a note card feel, so I added the Monogram trimmed in the gold and added a few sequins for the finishing touch.   The colour on the actual card is much darker than what is showing in the photos.  


And it’s on to the next…



Thank you for hanging in there with me.  I hope you are enjoying the cards and that you will find something that may be helpful and or inspiring to you in your crafting journey.   This will be card number three (3) of my Altenew Educator Certification Program (AECP) level III projects.   Card #3 is for the Monoprinting class.  Monoprinting or another name Gel Printing uses as the name is implies Gel like shapes to transfer different media like acrylic paint, dye inks, pigment inks to different sub straits such as tissue paper, vellum, cardstock, etc.  You can use other things such as stamps to take your Monoprinting to the next level.   You can purchase Gel pads on-line (Amazon) or at places like Hobby Lobby, JoAnn’s, or Michaels if you are in the U.S. 

I purchased a set of pads from Amazon last year but never had an opportunity to use them.  I was so excited to see the Monoprinting class in the Altenew crafting class library.   This was my first time doing Monoprinting; although I had seen it done many times on YouTube videos.  I will say it was not as easy as I thought it was going to be.  I did several and I do mean several practice prints before I got to one that I thought might work.  I found that I had difficulty with colour combinations.  A tip that was very helpful was to graduate one colour or you could use the colour combinations by Kristina Werner on Pinterest.  She has put together some amazing colour combinations.  After several what I called failed attempts, I decided to monoprint with a monocolour (lol).   Graduating one colour was a little less anxiety provoking for me.   Something to remember is your print experience is greatly influence by the sub strait and media you use.   Since this was my first attempt and not going as I expected, I kept it simple with dye ink and card stock.   I like the abstractness of the prints and using stamps and other items to give the print further definition really helped. 

I used a blue ink and graduated the colour starting with the most concentration of ink at the bottom.  I kept using what was on the pad until it was nearly gone.  I added droplets of water and square stenciling in gold to give it a grunge look.  After it was dried I used Altenew’s LeafCanopy stamp set add some leaves to the print.  I wasn’t happy with the print while I was creating, but what I learn during the AECP classes was to keep going eventually something will come to you.  I’m glad I kept going.  In the end I manage to come out with something I’m at least okay with.  For me what really made me like the card was the sentiment.  I think using Altenew’s “A Note Of Thanks” stamp from the Many Thanks Stamp Set trimmed in gold brought the card together.   Here are a few phots of my finished card.

Thank you for taking the time to visit.  Card #4 coming up.




Moving along to card number four (4) from my Altenew Educator Certification Program (AECP) level III projects submissions.   Now this card was inspired by the Korean artist Lee Ungno.  She was definitely my MUSE, which is also the name of the class for which this card was created.  Her “Bamboo” painting is just so peace to me.  When I look at her painting, I feel like I’m standing in the middle of a bamboo forest and I can hear the soft musical sounds of the culms and leaves moving in the wind.  I love this painting.  It’s very clean and simple like the card it inspired.  

I stamped several bamboo trees across the card front in Altenew’s Jet Black Ink.  I started off the card front and ended off the card front to give the look of an endless row of Bamboo trees.  There is no sentiment for this card externally.  My sentiment will be inside.   I think this would be a good sympathy or encouragement card.  Bamboo trees are strong, and both losing someone and being motivated in times of distress take a great deal of strength.  There is an implied message of strength in the image. 

I cut a frame four times in beige cardstock and clue them together.  I wanted the image to set back as if it was a picture in a frame like in the museum.   I really like the simplicity and the image that comes to my mind when I see it.   You can see a picture of Lee Ungno's painting below. 

Sometimes less is more...

Painting by Lee Ungno "Bamboo" 1971

Thanks for stopping by...

Mixed Media Page up next!


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