The fantastically whimsical, one-woman-wonder of a cardmaker named Darnell Knauss made my day by agreeing to be featured on my blog. She's the owner of djkardkreations. If you haven't stopped by her corner of the blogosphere yet, you don't know what you're missing! This firecracker of a lady is probably the most encouraging, kindest soul I've ever had the pleasure to come in contact with. Her creations are always one part humor, the other part pure, raw talent. She is a master of all things clean, and I'm so jealous of her ability to take an image and really make it POP on a card.
Just look at her gorgeous work! You can totally see why I'd be inspired by the fresh, bright designs.
She is pretty much exactly who I aspire to be when I grow up. Her wit, humor, and penchant for making up hilarious acronyms constantly keeps me smiling.
One such acronym happens to be MACS, which stands for Mutually Admiring CASEing Society. Not only did Darnell agree to be featured, she also is CASEing my work, too! So go check out her blog. As I type, I don't know which work of mine she's chosen to CASE - I can't wait to be surprised!
But why bore you with my meanderings when the infamous Mrs. Knauss can fill you in herself? Here's 7 things you should know about Darnell:
1. How did I get my start in stamping?
I was invited by a coworker to come along to a Stampin’ Up! Workshop. Since I was the kind of person who spent $20-$50 a month on cards to send to family and friends, I thought the concept of making my own cards and saving money (oh, bwhaha) was the greatest thing since sliced bread. Not to mention, fun!
2. What's the craziest/funniest thing I've ever made?
That would have to be this card of a paper-pieced baby with measles (attached). I keep it on display in my Playhouse and every time I look at it, I giggle.
3. If I could be any craft supply, what would I be and why?Great question, Becca! I guess I’d have to say paper because of all that fondling that goes on.
4. What kind of cards are my favorite to make?My favorite cards to make are clean and simple and often one-layer. And if I can also make them whimsical or punny, all the better.
5. What are my favorite card-making challenges?You can find card-making challenges that I enjoy listed on a tab at the top of my blog home page. From those, it’s impossible to pick favorites. That would be like asking me which of the stars are my favorites!
6. What is my least favorite crafting supply?This question really stumped me. If I try a craft supply and don’t like it, I don’t use it again, so after a dozen years, that aren’t too many supplies in the Playhouse that I don’t love. Oh, what about my wall clock? Can we call that a crafting supply? It’s my least favorite because it goes too fast and I feel like I’ll never be able to get caught up on my NBUS, nor all the techniques I want to try, nor all the DJKASING I want to do!
7. What's your advice for new stampers/bloggers?I learned over time that you can’t just start a blog and then sit there waiting for people to accidentally drive by and see your cards in the window. My advice for newbies is simple: treat other bloggers like you would like to be treated. Visit, comment, and follow other bloggers whose style you like. Enter challenges, which will get you some exposure. It does take a bit of effort, but the rewards and the friendships that develop are well worth the effort! And don't be afraid to ask questions of more seasoned stampers! We love helping newbies!!
See what I mean by humor and wit!?! For my CASEd (Copy And Steal Everything) card, I searched and searched through droves of Darnell's creations. There were just so many great ones to choose from that I couldn't decide! I printed off 4 of them and hung their pictures in my craft room where they stared at me until I finally had to select just one.
After much hemming and hawing, this guy won:
I just adored the bright, fun colors. Most people here know I'm more of a mixed media, distressed type of girl, but it's not because I don't like clean and simple cards, it's because I'm just no good at creating them! This card shows off a perfect example of just how gorgeous clean work can be. It's so bright and fun and all things that are right with the world.
I wound up making two cards because I was so inspired!
My first card was made using a stencil. I went around the edges with a scoring tool and then I painted the "petals" in with a variety of Perfect Pearls.
My CASEd Cards
I cut around the edges to give it a cutout side panel, and used a stamp from Verve's "Big Wishes" set to finish it off.
I just loved all the shimmer and shine!
I wasn't quite sure if the cutout panel would work (it flattened nicely after being laid under a couple of books for the evening) so I also made up card number 2:
For this one, I colored in all the petals with Spectrum Noir markers and then outlined them all using a white paint pen. The sentiment is actually from a Papertrey ink set that Darnell had kindly sent me for Christmas! (Thanks, by the way!)
You can see that I also hand-drew some whisper white doodles on the outskirts, just to fill in some of that space. Ok, ok, it was really to cover up a mistake in coloring outside the lines. ;)
Remember when I told you that I couldn't do clean and simple. Well these cards turned out to be clean and NOT simple! One thing all those CAS goddesses don't tell you is just how much work goes into making something look so perfect! For me, if I'm distressing and inking something all over, it's no big deal if I make a little boo-boo because I just cover it up with something. You can't do that with CAS cards!! Every inch has to be carefully planned for and thought out!
So Darnell, here's to you and your perfection. Or something pretty close to it, anyway!
For my readers, will you please stop by djkardkreations and leave Darnell an extra little bloggy love? And if you haven't seen it yet, she's running the 3rd iteration of the NBUS challenge and giving away $250 in gift cards to STAMPlorations - just sayin'...
Thanks for stopping by! And if you haven't heard about it yet - I have some fantastical BLOG CANDY to give away on my previous post.