Splashin' Into Summer!

Wow, what a weekend! It was everything Memorial Day should be: swimming, sunshine, relaxing with friends. And I didn't take a single photo...eeek! What is wrong with me? I guess I took the "break" a little too seriously. Oh well...there will be more swimming, sunshine and time with friends ahead of us this year.

What I DO have for you today are some projects using the brand-spankin' new Splash Dance line from Imaginisce. And...are you ready for this??? My first projects using the i-Rock! Oooh, there is so much I want to say about this cool new tool, but before I digress...let's take care of some business.

The Imaginisce June Sketch contest kicks off today! Are you playing along? Check out all the details today on the Imaginisce blog because you don't want to miss out on the awesome Imaginisce prize package.

This month's sketch is by the very talented Kim Holmes, and here's my take:

Leave a comment here, then hop on over to the Imaginisce blog for links to the other participating Design Team members and leave a comment on their blogs, too. Each comment is another chance to win!

Okay, on to the eye candy...are you ready for the i-Rock?

Um, yes. I created this all by myself. Okay, I had some help from the i-Rock and one of the stencil kits. My favorite thing about the i-Rock is that you can use any color combination of crystals (a.k.a. Glam Rocks) -- you're not limited to white or black or pink or whatever the manufacturers happen to think is "in" for the season. You can totally customize it to the colors in your layout.

Adding the flourishes gave the layout that little extra "oomph" it needed to really pop. It took me about 30 minutes to add it, but it was my first attempt and part of that time was getting my "technique" down. I'm getting faster, but there's definitely a bit of a learning curve.

My second attempt was on textured cardstock (Core'dinations), and I learned that the bigger rocks take a little longer to melt/adhere on the texture. I had them popping off until I finally realized that I needed to hold down a good 15+ seconds to make sure they were on there securely. And I love the way it turned out.

The blowfish stamp is one of the acrylic Snag 'Em Stamps from the Splash Dance line. I colored it in with Pebbles chalks and mounted it to a chipboard circle I covered in coordinating cardstock. Then I applied the rocks around the edge using the circle stencils for i-Rock. All of the circles on the card are from this same stencil set. I just varied the sizes and the types/colors of rocks.

A few quick tips I've picked up so far:

1. The tip gets hot and it will burn you (ask me how I know this). Be very careful not to touch it or let it touch paper or other items on your scrap table. (Not that your scrap table is as messy as mine... just sayin')

2. The bigger the rock, the longer it takes to get it warm enough to melt the glue on the bottom. Common sense really, but it took me a few tries to figure it out.

3. The stencils are fun to play with and make for a nearly foolproof design. I used magnets and a magnetic cutting mat to hold them in place while I was working. Be sure to choose rocks that are slightly smaller than the holes and, when you've got them all heated and secure, peel the stencil up s-l-o-w-l-y.

So far, I really love the i-Rock. It's opened up a whole new dimension of bling for me, and I can't way to play around with it more. Very fun tool!