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January Challenge: Pick Your Inspiration!

January Challenge

Hi All,

Welcome to the January Challenge! It was so fun to have you vote on what cards you’d like to use for inspiration. It was a great idea from the community. I love when you all make suggestions.

So here are the three cards (click on each to go to the original post with video):

Split Background1. Split Background Highlighted Background2. Highlighted Background Distress Marker Coloring3. Distress Marker Coloring

Pick your favorite and use it as inspiration for a card of your own. I thought it would be helpful for me to give you a few comments on each…

  1. Split Background – This is the one I chose! See details below. Create a full-size background with any stamp or combination of stamps, then split it – up, down, sideways, in shapes… Or, use these colors to create a beautiful bouquet of flowers. Or or, color only certain parts of your background. This one has a lot of options.
  2. Highlighted Background – I made this one by using a single background stamp, stamping it with a subtle color, cutting out a piece to highlight, and popping the highlight on top. Instead of a background, you could stamp several images for a background in a lighter color, then use one of those images as your highlight.
  3. Distress Marker Coloring – For this card, you could use the diagonal layout as your inspiration, or you could use the technique. I stamped with distress markers, then filled in with the same color I stamped with.
    1. You don’t have to use any of these ideas – be creative and do something totally unique!

      If you are new to the community, I encourage you to check out the Challenges Page for detailed information about how the challenges work.

      The last day to submit your entry is Sunday, January 31st, 11:59pm CT. One random winner will be selected from all entries and announced on Monday, February 1st.

      SimonSaysStamp Gift Voucher
      The giveaway will be a $25 gift voucher to Simon Says Stamp, one of my favorite stores!

      Even though a random winner is selected at the end of the month, the challenge is open indefinitely. Please continue to post to the challenges. Continuously seeing everyone’s new work is a win for everyone’s inspiration!

      Okay, just to recap the main rules:

      • Your entry must be inspired by one of the three cards above. Be sure to indicate which card inspired you when you link your entry.
      • You can submit as many entries as you like! However, please submit only one entry per card.
      • After submitting your entry, leave a comment on the entry just before yours.
      • Leave more comments on entries, if you’re so inclined. 🙂
      • To be eligible for a prize, you must be an active member of LiveLoveCards at the time the winner is announced.

      Are you ready to enter? CLICK HERE!

      For my card today, I used the split background with the Sketched Roses stamp:

      January Challenge Card

      I used my distress inks to color the roses in some soft, muted tones. And just like the inspiration, I used vellum for my sentiment.

      I haven’t been happy with the lighting of my videos in my temporary crafting quarters, so I went out and purchased another light. Wow, I think the difference is huge. I feel so relieved! More delays on the new house. Hopefully the last weekend in January. Maybe they will take the paper off the counters in my room this week. If they do, I’ll share.

      Enjoy the video. I look forward to seeing your creations!



      To purchase at Ellen Hutson, click the EH link. To purchase at Simon Says Stamp, click the SSS link.

      Sketched Roses
      Sketched Roses
      Oriental Orchid
      Oriental Orchid
      Worn Lipstick Distress Ink
      Worn Lipstick
      Scattered Straw Distress Ink
      Scattered Straw
      Picked Raspberry Distress Ink
      Picked Raspberry
      Versamark Ink Pad
      Versamark Ink
      Hero Arts White Embossing Powder
      Hero Arts
      Black Embossing Powder
      Black Embossing Powder
      Strathmore Watercolor Paper
      Watercolor Paper
      Hero Arts Black Notecards
      Hero Arts Black Notecards
      Bazzill 40lb Vellum
      Bazzill 40lb Vellum
      Thin Paper Tape
      Thin Paper Tape
      Stampin' Up! Heat Tool
      Heat Tool
      Ranger Craft Sheet
      Craft Mat
      Fiskars Trimmer
      Fiskars Trimmer
      ATG Tape Runner
      ATG Tape Runner


      Sorry, the uploaded entries are no longer available.


  1. wrote on January 4th, 2016 at 1:11 pm

    mary w

    Beautiful Card!

  2. wrote on January 4th, 2016 at 1:44 pm


    Hello Darlene: I love all 3 of this beautiful cards, I will make my cards with these designs, I think, from the three, my favorite is #3, with those gorgeous Altenew flowers, simply beautiful.

  3. wrote on January 4th, 2016 at 2:59 pm

    Mary Jane

    Love the card for today. Cant wait to get started on this challenge!

  4. wrote on January 4th, 2016 at 3:22 pm


    I love the look of these cards they are one of my favorite and I love the water coloring you did on this one.

  5. wrote on January 4th, 2016 at 3:52 pm


    I love the soft watercolored look you got on your card, Darlene–great color choices! Thanks for the tip about cutting the 1/16″ out from between the panels, rather than just cutting the pieces and then spreading them 1/16″ apart. I never would have thought of that, but looking at your finished card, you’re right! Hope you are having a great year so far! 🙂 ~ Andrea

  6. wrote on January 4th, 2016 at 6:28 pm


    very pretty, delicate looking

  7. wrote on January 4th, 2016 at 8:12 pm


    dear Darlene, I so enjoy watching you watercolor. you inspire me to try colors that I otherwise ignore. lol I don’t think my worn lipstick and scattered straw have ever been used. lol this piece ended up with such a nice soft look, but with a striking look also. the way you cut the pieces will save me a lot of time. thanks so much, hugs, treen

  8. wrote on January 5th, 2016 at 6:34 am


    Love the colours of this card. You make it all look so easy. It’s also interesting that you use black cardstock quite a lot (a colour I rarely use) and it looks great. I might have a go at this some time this week. Thanks again Darlene.

  9. wrote on January 7th, 2016 at 3:41 am


    My favourite is the Highlighted Background. I used Distress Stains for the background and for watercolouring the focal image. I wasn’t happy with my frame so I layered the panel onto black.
    Thanks for the inspiration Darlene.

  10. wrote on January 11th, 2016 at 3:17 pm

    Patty Beers

    As usual I am having a hard time adding a link the correct way. Not sure what I am doing wrong.

  11. wrote on January 17th, 2016 at 1:01 am


    I love the challenge cards number 6 & 7 and ahow they haven’t done the normal split panel. Very creative.

  12. wrote on January 23rd, 2016 at 12:32 am


    Ausmex, I really like your card. I have that stamp set and want to try the flower in purple now.

  13. wrote on January 26th, 2016 at 10:55 am


    I am new to the site and posted a card – number 28. My card is stored on another card making site so if you were to click on it, you probably won’t be able to get into the site since it’s for members only.

  14. wrote on January 26th, 2016 at 11:18 am


    I added my card to pinterest and am deleting the one from StampNation

  15. wrote on February 13th, 2016 at 12:45 am


    Darlene I love this card! I loved the first one so it is no surprise that this one is one of my favorites as well! I wanted to let u know as well that I found a new way of adhering my vellum to my cards that makes it so easy and I don’t have to worry about strategically placing sentiments or embellishments in order to make sure my vellum is secure. I put Ken Oliver’s Stick it behind my vellum before I cut my vellum out. So when I die cut a shape or cut a banner etc… As long as the Stic It is completely covering the back of the vellum when you place it on your card not only will it be completely secure but you also will not see any adhesive behind the vellum. It works beautifully and I thought I would pass this technique on just in case you didn’t already know about it. Thank you for sharing this card with us it really is a beautiful card! And a question for you as well do you have to have a blog in order to submit an entry for the challenges?

    • wrote on February 15th, 2016 at 12:03 pm

      Darlene DeVries

      I like the idea of the stick-it behind the entire piece of vellum. I will give it a try. You do not need a blog to enter the challenge. These is some more info about that HERE.

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