Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Guest Diva Spotlight - Stephanie Kraft

Thanks for visiting on day two of our Guest Diva Spotlight. Today we're highlighting the work of our fabulous guest, Stephanie Kraft. Stephanie has been a faithful follower of Verve challenges and Mojo Mondays, and her clean, fresh style totally stood out to us! I love her color choices and the way the stamps totally show off her style. You can see more of Stephanie's work on her blog - HandKrafted by Stephanie.

When Stephanie sent me this card using the Comfort Plain Jane, it literally took my breath away. I absolutely adore the colors she chose (which would totally brighten someone's day!), and the pops of brown, stitching, and crochet flower...all perfect touches!

We asked Stephanie our Verve-i-view questions, and here are a few of her answers:

1. When/how did you get hooked on stamping?
One of my neighbors invited me to a Close To My Heart gathering in late 2003, but I was unable to attend. I was interested in getting back into scrapbooking (I had done a little pre-marriage and pre-child), so I contacted the demonstrator and asked if I could see a catalog. She invited me to her house and showed me some sample cards and stamps. She kept telling me how great stamping was, and I kept telling her that I didn't stamp or make cards and was only interested in scrapbooking! I took the catalog home and later that night ordered some scrapbooking supplies (as well as a bunch of stamps and ink). I've been hooked ever since!

2. How often do you stamp?
I try to stamp everyday, but that doesn’t always happen. To me, my stamping time is just as important as everyday chores (working out, cleaning, cooking, etc.) – stamping helps me to stay sane!

3. Tell me about your funniest or most embarrassing stamping related injury.
Sorry, I don't have a funny answer for this one... I can tell you that I have stabbed my fingers countless times with the paper piercer and cut off a few fingernails with my paper trimmer, gotten glitter in my eyes and rubbed them, but nothing too major... yet (knock on wood)!

The next creation of Stephanie's I wanted to showcase is this card using Hearts on Fire. All the little details are just perfect...not overwhelming, but totally make this card! I love how she repeated the sentiment and heart to create the background, highlighted the kraft panels with a white gel pen, and stamped on the twill. And if that wasn't enough, the button was a perfect finishing touch. Love it!

More Q&A from Stephanie:

4. How long does it take you to create a project that you're happy with?
From start to finish, a project takes me anywhere from 30 minutes to a couple of hours. I usually try to finish a card or scrapbook layout in about an hour (unless it is a mini scrapbook album or other large project). After that time, if I’m still not happy with it, I will put it aside and look at it from time to time throughout my day or week. I may come back to it and change something or just call it quits.

5. I am usually a little messy in my creating. Tell me about your creative space.
I am very fortunate to have my very own stamping/scrapbooking room (though my 5-year-old DD seems to think it’s her play room!). Despite this, I am constantly losing my supplies and often have problems finding what I am looking for (even something I just bought)! I am currently in the middle of big reorg project – my DH just put together a wall of cubes for me. I like having things organized and put away, but I also need to be able to see them. My hope is to adopt the motto of “everything has a place and everything in its place”.
I always try to start out with a clean workspace, but it inevitably gets taken over with supplies (and I end up creating in a tiny corner of my table). This drives me crazy, and I will often stop in the middle of a project to clean up a bit. I tend to be very meticulous (not an eye-baller at all!).

6. If you were stranded on a deserted island, which craft tool could you not live without? Why?
Assuming that I have basic supplies with me (cardstock, patterned paper, stamps, ink, markers, etc.), the tool that I use on almost all of my projects is my Cuttlebug. Of course, I’d also need my Cuttlebug embossing folders and Nestabilities along with it as well! My 2nd favorite tool is my Scor-pal and Scor-mat. I never thought I needed a dedicated scoring tool and now I wouldn’t want to live without it!

The last project of Stephanie's I wanted to show off was this stunning card using Hundred Hearts. Can you see that brown ribbon with pink polka dots? YUM! Everything she did totally draws your eye to the sentiment...and check out her perfect stitching AGAIN! I love the corners she created, and the ghost shape is just adorable. Did I say I love this yet?

And here are the final questions from Stephanie's Verve-i-view:
7. What is your biggest source of inspiration?
Other stampers! I used to spend all of my creating time browsing blogs or online galleries such as SCS, then I’d find myself with all of these ideas, but nothing created. I started keeping small notebooks everywhere (my car, purse, nightstand, notepad docs on my computer, etc.) where I jot down design ideas, sketches, etc. Now I try to make my browsing time count.

8. Who in the stamping world do you want to be when you grow up and why?
There are so many talented stampers that it is extremely difficult to choose just one! I just joined the blogging world a few months ago, and I am constantly amazed by the talent, the willingness to share ideas and the closeness of the stamping community. That said I greatly admire Debbie Olson. Hers was the first blog that I ever came across and I was (and still am) just in awe of her work. Everything from her vintage-looking creations to her incredible coloring never ceases to amazes me.

9. What is your favorite part of the creative process?
I like to begin a project with a specific design in mind (whether it’s an inspiration photo, sketch or the like). Before I begin, I gather a bunch of coordinating supplies (ink, embellishments, patterned paper, etc.) along with the stamp set(s) that I’m most likely to use. Having everything laid out in front of me helps my creative juices to flow. I am most happy when all the pieces fit together and the end result is something that I think is worthy of giving away. I love giving "handkrafted" gifts!

 Thanks so much for coming to check out Stephanie's eye candy today! We have certainly enjoyed having her as a Verve Guest this month. Don't forget, if you want to see more of her creations, check out her Verve Gallery. There's lots of inspiration waiting for you there. And if you haven't seen the latest Verve Release, CLICK HERE for the newest stamps and collections. 

Make sure you come on back on Monday, January 19th...Jen is kicking off the Project Parade in style! Stay tuned...