I've already mentioned to those on my Newsletter Mailing List that I'm going to be a bit scarce online for the next couple of months. It's all good news, but sometimes even good news in life gets in the way of some activities. In my case, it's best for all concerned if I back away from my Stampin' Up! activities and focus on my family.
You may know from reading here that, back in the fall, lava bearing down on our little town of Pahoa, Hawaii, scared us into moving out of our home and into a rented house, at least until we could get our bearings and decide what we would like to do on a permanent basis. On top of that, we had to cancel a trip to visit many members of our family on the U.S. mainland. It was a bit of a stressful time and you may have noticed that I was missing in action back then a bit, too.
But this time we're not reacting to something imposed on us. We've decided that we are going to move back into our own home. The lava is being very slow in deciding what it's going to do. Besides that being a good thing in and of itself, it also means that our local and state governments have made some plans about what to do if (likely when) the lava cuts off our main road. So we're comfortable moving back. But to get ready, we've decided to do some much needed renovation and updating of our home. With that and the move, you can imagine where my focus is going to be for a while.
On top of that we're once again planning our trip to the mainland, and we're going to try to see as many of our family members as possible. Can you say, "Long Trip"?
I'm still going to be on here now and then, and certainly every other Tuesday for the Stampin' Up! Only (SUO) Challenge blog post. But as of last week, my craft room has once again been packed up, and will likely not be unpacked until just before our travel.
My plan is to be back in full Stampin' Up! "swing" by the end of April – just in time to get our demonstrator preorder peek at the new 2015-2016 Stampin' Up! Catalog. Wow! This year has gone fast!
I'll be online for sure, and am still an active Stampin' Up! demonstrator. So, if you have any questions, feel free to post them here – I get notifications any time there's a comment. And my Stampin' Up! store is open and ready for any orders that you'd like to place between now and then. You know how easy that is, so keep it up! It will definitely help me to keep my sales up for the time I'm gone.
The Stampin' Up! Only (SUO) Challenge this time is to make a card for a teen. I have a teenaged grandson, so making this kind of card was a fun challenge for me. As I was making this card, Quin's mother posted some wonderful photos on Facebook showing him making dinner for the family as a Valentine gift. And he did everything on his own. The menu looked like I would have been more than happy to be there. What a wonderful kid!
Besides being a cook, Quin is also involved in theater and is a singer with a group of budding musicians – great stuff for a teenager! So when I first saw the Be the Star Stamp Set in my Stampin' Up! Catalog, I knew I'd be using it to make cards for him. It's already in the mail to him to let him know how proud of him I am!
The background paper for the card front is from the Painted Blooms Designer Series Paper set. Yes, this set has fabulous floral prints. But the painted stripes on the reverse of a couple of the floral prints are fun prints to use, too. This print is Daffodil Delight, but it also has some hints of orange in it. I decided the orange I would use to accent this card was Tangelo Twist, which is the square mat between the striped paper and the Whisper White Cardstock on which I stamped the words. I stamped the top two using Tangelo Twist ink, and then I used Mossy Meadow for the third stamped sentence.
I used Mossy Meadow to stamp the small star groupings in the background and also used it to mat the entire card front. Back to the Daffodil Delight, I used Daffodil Delight ink to stamp the two larger stars, with the largest star stamped on Daffodil Delight Cardstock and the smaller on Whisper White Cardstock. After cutting the stars using the Stars Framelits set, I attached a piece of Mossy Meadow 3/8" Stitched Satin Ribbon behind the stars for a fun accent. I adhered the star group onto the card front using Stampin' Dimensionals. For the final accent, I added a Rhinestone Basic Jewel to the center of the stars, with a few smaller Rhinestones on the smaller star groupings. Gotta have something shiny with stars!
If you have a teen in your family or circle of friends, think about making a card for him or her and sending it off – "just because." Teenagers need that from us now and then. Of course, then you'll want to add it to the SUO Challenge Blog! We'd all love to see it.
And if you'd like to use this wonderful stamp set, following are links to my online Stampin' Up! store where you can buy it and the other products I featured in this blog post!
I mentioned a couple of blog posts back that I really don't like wasting paper. This is especially true of paper out of which I've die cut something. A former neighbor taught me years ago not to throw out the negative images when I'd cut the then new Top Note Die. Not only did the Top Note shape get used, but the rectangle from which the die cut was made was used as a frame for another project!
Do you remember the birthday card I made for my sister-in-law, Deb, last week? I was sure to cut the "hello" from the Hello You Thinlits Dies so very little was wastede. Yep, I purposefully cut it from the bottom of a Whisper White Cardstock rectangle - and here it is! With that Crisp Cantaloupe Cardstock showing through the "hello" makes a lovely card all by itself. Of course, it's hard for me to be THAT plain. So I picked another product from the Stampin' Up! 2015 Occasions Catalog – the Spring Flowers Textured Impressions Embossing Folder. I only wanted the texture to be on the top of the card, so I just ran the embossing folder through the Big Shot part way. Then I tied some of the Crisp Cantaloupe Thick Baker's Twine asround the Whisper White layer where the textured area met the plain cardstock.
There's another addition that you could make to this card, and that would be to capture the little pieces that were cut out for the hoops and glue them onto the card, too. I think both ways work just fine!
So remember when you're die-cutting with your Sizzix – look to see if there's something you can do with that negative space that's left!
Here are the products I featured in this project. Do take advantage of being able to order any of these directly from my Stampin' Up! store by clicking on any of the images!
You probably know that Stampin' Up! is a Direct Sales company with a multi-level marketing organization. I'm so happy to be a part of this organization, and I'm especially happy to be in the downline of one of the most wonderful Stampin' Up! Demonstrators, Sandy Hancock. So I was so happy when another downline alerted me to her upcoming birthday. At that point, there was no chance that a card that I made would get to Sandy in time for her birthday. The silver lining in this little cloud was that I'd get to use a sentiment that I've been dying to have an excuse to use.
What a fun, fun image this stamp is. I cannot take my eyes off all those wide-eyed critters staring out from the card! But more than that, I wanted to attached the "it's pasture birthday" sentiment to it. Perfect!
The stamp set is called From the Herd, and I do not have the time or space to go into all the details of this fabulous set. What I will tell you about this set is that I colored it with Stampin' Up! Blendabilities alcohol markers. The largest animal – I cannot at the moment think of what it's called! – I colored using the Calypso Coral Blendabilities set, so I decided to use Calypso Coral Cardstock to form my card base. I made the card front two layers of the cardstock, clipping the corners of the top layer and embossing it with the Decorative Dots Textured Impressions Embossing Folder.
I also think that a bow is absolutely necessary on a birthday card like this, so I added the FREE Calypso Coral Ribbon that's in the current 2015 Sale-A-Bration Catalog. There are three rolls of ribbon and an assortment of three different color buttons in one bundle that you can get FOR FREE just by purchasing $50 worth of other Stampin' Up! products. This goes through the end of March. Add a comment here if you'd like to know more.
What a fun card this was to make. Hmmmph! Pasture birthday, indeed!
Earlier in the week I posted a Hexagon-shaped card and said I'd tell you how to get the tutorial later in the week. Well, now is later as I've made a Valentine Card with the same shape!
What fun making these cards with "different" shapes is!
As I'm sure I mentioned before, this is not a true hexagon. To get to the shape of a true hexagon I would have had to have some really hard measurements in my instructions – 3/32"? Probably not. But for a greeting card, I think the shape is fine – if you want a hexagon look! The only issue when you have a not-quite-hexagon shape, is that you have to pay attention if you're cutting layers. What fits one way may not – will not! – fit another way. So I found myself putting "up" arrows on the back of each layer as I made it. Otherwise it's like doing a jigsaw puzzle trying to turn pieces around to see which way they might fit. But it's paper, and a little bit of trimming makes it work!
For this card, I used the Stacked With Love Designer Series Paper Stack from the Stampin' Up! 2015 Occasions Catalog for the background layer. This is the first time I've used the Black and White sides of any of the designs in the Paper Stack. They really do set off the red very nicely.
The stamped image is one of the stamps in the You Plus Me Stamp Set, also in the Occasions Catalog. I've really enjoyed using the set for Valentine cards, and I'm sure I'll find some uses for it after Valentine's Day is over – that would be after today!
I accented the card with a doily from the Tea Lace Paper Doilies pack, as well as a couple of Real Red hearts punched with the heart punch in the Itty Bitty Accents Punch Pack. The final touch was Rhinestone Basic Jewels in the middle of the two hearts.
Fun little card! And here are the Stampin' Up! products that I used for this project. Don't forget that, to order any of these products, simply click on the picture below and you'll be whisked away to my very own Stampin' Up! store! If you have any questions, please add them to the comments below and I'll get right back to you!
OH! And how do you get the tutorial for this card? Just sign up for my newsletter using the box up to the left! I published the tutorial in the newsletter that I sent out earlier this week, and I'm going to send out a second publication of it next week!
Finally I'm getting back to posting some of the last of my 2015 Valentine Cards. This time I did not use a set that's a Valentine stamp set per se. But this is a new set in the Stampin' Up! 2015 Occasions Catalog – Sheltering Tree.
This is another Photopolymer Stamp set that makes is to easy to get images stamped just where I want them! In the case of this stamp set, not only is there a stamp for the trunk/ branches and one for the flowering part of the tree. But there's another little stamp with just a few of the "flowers" on it that I used to stamp some different color throughout the tree.
For the major part of the flowers, I used Strawberry Slush Classic Ink. But when I finished with this stamp, I added in some leaves throughout the tree using that little stamp and some Pear Pizzazz Ink. Such a nice touch! And you're not limited just to two colors. Use as many as you'd like. Want different pinks throughout? Use different pinks!
This is really a nice, simple card – just a hint of a mat made with Strawberry Slush Cardstock, a pretty bow of Pear Pizzazz 1/4" Cotton Ribbon, and a plainly-stamped sentiment from the same stamp set.
But then there are those hearts! I needed a variety of punched hearts for another Valentine project, so I used Strawberry Slush Cardstock and the Confetti Hearts Border Punch to make the tiny hearts that are sprinkled throughout this lovely tree!
This is a very easy card to make, especially if you need some last-minute cards as I definitely did! Here are the products that I used for this project. Every last one of them is useful for so many other things than Valentine cards! They'll get lots of use in my craft room later in the Spring!
Today I had an idea for a card, and my card ended up looking JUST like I wanted it to – unlike yesterday's disaster.
To begin, I had a challenge – the biweekly Stampin' Up! Only (SUO) challenge in fact. The challenge this time was to make a card with a shape other than a rectangle or square. With all the different Sizzix Dies that Stampin' Up! has in its catalog, this should be no problem.
But I had to make it more difficult than it needed to be. I wanted to make a Hexagon Shaped Card!
And I finally figured it out! This card is made from a folded 4-1/4" x 5" card base, with the fold at the top (the 5" side of the card). I'll be making another of these cards later this week or next, and I'll let you know then how to get a copy of the tutorial for it.
For this card, I used the Butterfly Basics Stamp Set, which I bought as a Photopolymer set. I love that I can see just where I'm stamping something with this style set! The colors I chose for the card were Mossy Meadow, Tangelo Twist and Baked Brown Sugar. Except for the main fern leaf on which the die-cut butterfly is perched, I stamped the inked stamp on scrap paper once before stamping on the Very Vanilla Cardstock that I used for the stamped layer.
I made the butterfly with the middle sized die in the new Butterfly Thinlits Die set. This makes such a stunning butterfly which fits so many kinds of paper crafted projects! I cut the die using Tangelo Twist Cardstock. Did you know? There's a great "sandwich" recipe for cutting thinlits. Thanks to fellow Stampin' Up! Demonstrator extraordinaire, Patty Bennett for this! The Sizzix die sandwich is this: from the bottom up, a platform (I like the magnetic platform); a cutting pad; a piece of a plain dryer sheet (yes, the thing by your dryer); the cardstock; a piece of waxed paper (yes, the stuff in your kitchen); the thinlit die; and another cutting pad. What an easy way to use these delicate dies!
On the inside of this card, I added the Happy Birthday stamp from the same stamp set, and accented it with another little stamped butterfly – this time fully inked!
If you have a favorite shaped card or want to try one out, just stop by the Stampin' Up! Only Challenge Blog, first to get ideas, and then to enter your own project in the challenge! It's so much fun!
Here are the two main Stampin' Up! products that I used for this card. What great products from the Stampin' Up! 2015 Occasions Catalog!
Not every project that I make turns out at all as I envisioned it. Sometimes that's a good thing, as I find myself with a project that grew in a different direction than I'd planned and I end up with a card I'd be proud to send or give to a friend. But then there are times when I wonder if I shouldn't just put it in a box somewhere until it just disappears into the void. Today's project is of the latter variety.
I'm really not sure what to say about this project except to tell you my thoughts as I started on it. The first thing was that I wanted to practice the "Kissing Technique," which is something I've not done in a while. That's where you ink up a background stamp and and then press a solid stamp onto the inked stamp and stamp the solid stamp. As I had my Stamped With Love Paper Stack out on my work table, I thought of using the colors in it. I also had my brand new Petal Potpourri Stamp Set and the coordinating Flower Medallion Punch out – I hadn't put them away from my most recent Stampin' Up! order. So all I had to do was to find a good background stamp to work with. Ooops, I only own TWO background stamps! I just do not know how that happened. But out came the Dictionary Stamp and I decided to work with that.
I'm just not going to go into any more detail. You can probably see what happened – pulling out a piece of the Typeset Specialty Designer Paper to go with the Dictionary stamp, adding ribbon and a strip of the other paper. When it was all done, the whole design was out of balance and the colors didn't work. Sigh. This is why I don't write a blog post every day!
But speaking of that – tomorrow I'll share with you a project that started out with an idea and I think ended up being a winner. So don't give up on me!
My sister-in-law, Deb, had a birthday on Thursday, and today's card is the one that I made for her. I didn't want to post it here until I was sure it had made it from Hawaii to her home on the east coast. Certainly by now it has. I'm writing this on Friday afternoon in Hawaii, and it's probably a bit late to be calling her to find out. So here goes, and I hope you don't get to enjoy it before she does!
Oh, and there's another fact about this card that I must share and that is that it is the original design of fellow Stampin' Up! demonstrator, Mary Brown, the "Stamper Camper." I just loved the way she made this card and I had to copy it with my own colors.
What fun it was to make this card – and you would not believe how easy!
The first step was to create my card base – Whisper White Cardstock, embossed with the Spring Flowers Textured Impressions Embossing Folder. Then I cut a piece of paper from the Stacked With Love Designer Series Paper Stack using the largest die in the Deco Labels Collection Framelits. Then I trimmed the die-cut piece to fit on the front of the card.
This is when I cut the middle sized butterfly from the Butterflies Thinlits Dies set. The next step was to adhere the die cut paper to the card front, with the embossed card front showing through the area from which the butterfly had been cut. Then I applied Glue Dots to the center part of the butterfly and adhered that back into the place where it had been cut out of the Designer Series Paper. I just LOVE this look!
The last step was to cut the Hello image (from the Hello You Thinlits Dies set) out of Whisper White Cardstock. I adhered that to the front of the card using Multipurpose Adhesive – just a few drops around the back of the letters and that image is definitely going to stay put!
You may notice that the top of the "h" sits on top of a butterfly wing. That's how I originally saw this done. But just before I put it in an envelope to send to Deb, I flipped that wing out and set if free! I liked that much better for this card!
I hope you enjoyed reading about this project, and I also hope you'll find it fun enough to purchase some of the Stampin' Up! products that I used in it. Here's information about the featured products. If you click on any of the pictures, you'll be whisked away to my very own Stampin' Up! store where you can buy any that you wish. If you have any questions, just leave a comment and let me know!
My first Valentine of the season used one of the sentiments from the Sheltering Tree Stamp Set, and I just couldn't put it away!
I originally got the stamp, "you warm my heart," out to CASE (Copy And Share with Everyone) a card by one of my Stampin' Up! Demonstrator friends, Terri Tank. She made her card as part of a challenge a week or so ago, and I just loved the simplicity of it. Her colors were a bit different, but the idea is just the same. In fact, I liked this card so much that I used it as a Make and Take card in a workshop I held earlier this week.
The 1" strips of Designer Series Paper are from the Stacked With Love Designer Series Paper Stack that's in the Stampin' Up! 2015 Occasions Catalog. The strips in this card are 3-1/4" wide, but I also tried a card with 3-1/2" wide strips, and both work nicely with this layout. For the background behind the strips, I cut a piece of Real Red Cardstock as wide as the strips and 4" high (that allows for a 1/4" space top and bottom and 1/4" between each of the strips). Soooo simple!
Then for the heart decorations, I used the heart shape from the Itty Bitty Punch Pack to punch hearts from both Real Red and Crisp Cantaloupe Cardstock. But before I adhered the hearts, I stamped the sentiment at the bottom using Real Red Classic Ink. The Sheltering Tree stamp set is a Photopolymer stamp set, which makes getting that image right where you want it on the card SOOO easy!
So – I have two of my Valentine cards made! Hopefully next week I'll be able to make all the rest and get them mailed out in time for the holiday. Nice that it's on a Saturday this year – one extra day to hope the mail gets there!
If you'd like to use any of these products to get started on your own projects, just let me know (phone and e-mail contact information are up at the right), or you can order any of the products by clicking on the photo below, which will take you directly to my very own Stampin' Up! store!