Three Ideas for the August Paper Pumpkin Kit!

Aloha, all!

     If you're like me and subscribe to Stampin' Up!'s Paper Pumpkin Monthly Kit, then you might be a bit disappointed when the kit features a 3-dimensional item. Hey, if I want a box, I know how to make one. What I do like with every kit, however, is that each and every one includes a new stamp set and some new paper or cardstock I've never seen before. Once I home in on the stamp set and cardstock, the rest of the stuff is just incidental.

     And so it is with the August 2015 Paper Pumpkin Kit. What fun are those metallic card bases! But oh that chalk look on Basic Black Cardstock is just not going to work.  And the boxes? Not going to happen. What am I going to do with a box with pink and black flowers? But that kit is not going to waste!  Do you know what those boxes are made of?  Cardstock! There are some pretty strips to be had from just cutting them up. And the black die-cuts? Heat embossing will work just fine with those. Sure, I could use the heat tool on the Whisper White Craft Ink. But I never have liked the chalk look very much anyway, except in a school type setting.

August Pumpkin 2_edited-1

     In addition to adding a layer of the cardstock from one of the boxes, I included a bit of Basic Black Cardstock to use as a mat to separate it from the striped background. I used three of the stamps in the August 2015 Stamp Set, stamped in VersaMark and then heat embossed with Gold Stampin' Emboss Powder. Finally, I added some Gold 5/8" Satin Ribbon to accent the stamped images. This is a nice card to send off with a quick note to someone!


     For this card, with the bows in the background, I took one of the pink banners included in the kit, matted it with a bit of Mint Macaron Cardstock, tied a bow of Gold 1/8" Ribbon, and made that the central background image on the card. Again, I gold embossed two of the stamps in the set, this time on Mint Macaron Cardstock, cut it with one of the framelits in the Chalk Talk Framelits set, and adhered it with Stampin' Dimensionals onto the banner element. This is a much lighter card for saying "hello."

August Pumpkin 3

     I just couldn't stop with this kit! As I was writing this blog post, I noticed how close in shape the Chalk Talk die was to the shape of the black die-cuts in the kit. I still had the Mint Macaron Cardstock out, so I stamped on it with the new Archival Basic Black Ink, trimmed the top to be straight across, then adhered it to one of the black die-cuts. I trimmed it's top, too, added some Pink Pirouette Cotton Ribbon and a few Pink Pirouette Candy Dots, and that element was done. But what to use as a background. Hmmm. I kept moving one of the pink banners around to see how that would work. Then I glanced down and saw that there were LOTS of those pink banners sitting on my work table. Two would work nicely. So I adhered them together and then ran them through the Sizzix Big Shot using the Elegant Dots Embossing Folder. Voila! Done.

     I believe my next step will be to use some of my floral punches to punch some images out of those big flower shapes that were meant to go on the box. Those will also make some fun additions to card fronts!

     For sure, I'm going to take this opportunity to make a few sympathy cards. I'm out of them at the moment, and it never hurts to have some around. The sympathy stamp in this set is really nice.

     OK – back to other projects! I hope you enjoy your Paper Pumpkin kit this month as much as I have!

Posted on : Aug 19 2015
Posted under Stampin' Up! Kits, Stamping |

New Stamps 11: Watercolor Wishes

Aloha, all!

     I have been waiting for over two months for this stamp set to land in my craft room! The reason is that Watercolor Wishes was not ready for prime time until the 2015-2016 Stampin' Up! Catalog had been live for a month and I'd had that catalog to order from a month before that!  When I first went through the catalog during the preview, I knew that was one stamp set that was definitely going to be on my list!  I also knew there would be a Stampin' Up! Only Challenge Theme in July that would be for us to use our favorite stamp set from the new catalog. So here I am with a sample from the stamp set!


     But there are two "issues" with this stamp set. The first is that, as wonderful as it is, the only way to get it into your hot little hands is to buy a card-making kit called (wait for it) the wonderful Watercolor Wishes Card Kit. That quickly brings us to the second "issue" with this set and its accompanying kit. It's been TOO wonderful – read popular. That means that, by the time you read this, it will likely already have gone into back order status – and may be that way for many weeks. 

     But I have the kit and Nonetheless, I have to share with you the first card that I made from this wonderful kit!

     This is basically one of the cards in the kit.  As with any kit, I find it hard to make the cards just as they are shown in the kit. While you certainly can make the cards as described – and they will be lovely! – it's more fun for me to be a bit creative and do something different.  If you happen to have a Stampin' Up! Catalog, look at page 80, and over to the left in the top photo, you'll see the two layers that I used for this card.  But I changed somethings out:

  • I used a different sentiment (from the included stamp set)
  • I stamped the sentiment only once
  • I added a knot of Watermelon Wonder 1" Dotted Lace Trim (not in the kit)
  • I added flowers and leaves from the kit that are different from the planned card (these are in the kit)
  • and finally I punched the corners of the card base to coordinate with the rounded corners of the dotted layer. 

     Believe me, there will be enough left in this kit to use everything in it, including the embellishments found in the kit. My plan is to hold classes using this kit after the first of the year. Perhaps by then the excitement of this new find will have worn off a bit, and I can get enough for everyone who signs up for my class!  I hope to make some video class sessions, too. So anyone will be able to get my ideas on using this kit whether they're in my neighborhood or not.  Stay tuned.

     Meanwhile, pick YOUR FAVORITE new stamp set, make a project with it, and head on over to the SUO Challenges Blog to enter it in the challenge! The challenge doesn't close until August 1st! (OMG! Is it August already???? Yikes!)

     Finally this blog post marks the end of my commitment to use all my new stamp sets from the 2015-2015 Stampin' Up! catalog? Oh, there were one or two "other" projects in there. But each was kind of "new" in its own way. So from here on out, I'm not limited to my new stamps or to creating a good excuse not to use them.  But I think I will be using all of them from time to time throughout the rest of the year just because I've come to like them – by using them and not letting them sit around!  I hope you'll try the same with stamp sets you've bought.  If you need ideas, let me know and I'll help you out!


Posted on : Jul 20 2015
Posted under Challenges, Stampin' Up! Kits, Stamping, SUO Challenges |

REALLY Cleaning Up!

Aloha, all!

     You may be just like me in that "cleaning up" means getting your stamping room or space neat and tidy.  But my latest cleaning after our move back home was SERIOUS cleaning up.  Yes, there are still a few boxes not unpacked.  For the most part, the boxes contain winter holiday-related "stuff," so that will come in the fall.

     But then there were those boxes that hadn't been touched since before we moved away from the lava last fall.  Since WAY before!  And I definitely got into those because they had to go as we were cleaning out our garage, too, and that's where they took up space.  I found lots of really old retired Stampin' Up! products (not stamp sets – I sell those pretty quickly when they retire).  The good news was that I had just driven past a friend's church where there was an announcement of a big rummage sale this Saturday. Woo-hoo!  I called my friend who said what I had would be great for the sale.  So I went through those boxes and took them up and all that stuff is gone away, and for a good cause.

     One product, though, was no longer in its original packaging, and I really had no way to pack it.  So I tossed it in a trash bag.  I wasn't 10 feet away from the bag when I realized that I could use it to make some cards for a fund-raising fair in which one of my service organizations is participating this weekend.  They don't care if it's retired or not!


     These are some of the cards that I made using the Petal Party Simply Scrappin Kit.  Man, those were bright colors!  And this is the time of the year for bright, so I figured, "Why not use the kit!?"  This kit had plenty of stickers in it, and all but one of the colors is a current Stampin' Up! color.  See that pink?  It was called Pixie Pink.  But note how well the Melon Mambo Cotton Ribbon goes with the Pixie Pink.  Of course, the Pumpkin Pie Cotton Ribbon went well with the same color of prints and cardstock.  The other two colors were So Saffron and Old Olive

     As this needed to be a quick project, I just made all the card bases out of So Saffron Cardstock, so that I didn't have to have a separate sheet inside for written notes.  That came from my current stash as did the "Happy Mother's Day" stamp from the Teeny Wishes Stamp Set.  I punched all the sentiments using the Word Window Punch, matted with cardstock punched with the Modern Label Punch.  To decorate the envelopes to go with the cards, I used an image from the current Hostess Stamp Set, "I Like You," and colored it in with Melon Mambo, So Saffron and Old Olive Classic Ink.  

     This was definitely quick and easy!  I really miss the Simply Scrappin Kits.  But there are so many other kits both in the current Stampin' Up! Catalog and the new one that comes out at the beginning of June.  I'm sure there are some possibilities for some quick and easy projects there, too!

Retiring Product Alert

     Of course, most of what I used in these cards has been retired at least since 2010!  The only product that I used in this project that's current but will retire is the Hostess Stamp Set, I Like You.  That's gone come the end of May.  It's a gorgeous set for coloring with any of Stampin' Up!'s Stampin' Write Markers!

     I think this is the last of the retired products that I'll find in my craft room that I'll be sharing with you.  I HOPE that's the case because I want to start using up all my retiring products and sharing them with you!  If there's any retiring stamp set that you'd like me to use so you can see what it might look like in real life, just let me know.  If I have the set, I'll surely share it here!

     Have a great weekend and be sure to come back!  I have a fun twosome to show off in a day or two.


Posted on : May 01 2015
Posted under Stampin' Up! Kits, Stamping |

Aloha ‘Oe to a Member of our Bridge Club!

Aloha, all!

     I'm sure that you know all about the various meanings of the Hawaiian word, "Aloha."  But another phrase you may have heard in a song but not frequently read online is "Aloha 'Oe."  That's a phrase that bids farewell.

     Today, at our regular Sunday Duplicate Bridge game, we say, "Aloha 'Oe," to a treasured member of our club.  He is British and has been working on our island for several years.  Now, however, it's time for him to return to England, and we'll miss him dearly. So we're having a small party in his honor and my husband, the bridge manager, asked if I could make a banner.  Of course I could make a banner! 


     For this banner, I used the Stampin' Up! Build a Banner Simply Created Kit. I originally bought it last fall intending to use it for various Christmas gatherings.  But then our move to get away from the lava made life a bit too hectic, and so the banner kit sat unused – until yesterday!  Out it came and I cannot believe how quickly this project took shape!.

     Speaking of shapes, all three of the banner shapes included in this banner are made of a canvas- type of paper, and they are SOOOO easy to color up with the stencils that area also included in the kit.

     The kit comes with a Stampin' Spritzer bottle, and I had other bottles that I could have used to color the banners.  But I started reading about how to "protect areas" and "don't make too wet" and so forth, and decided spritzing was not going to work for me.

BannerPieces     What did work though – and beautifully! – was sponging!  So I sponged away, alternating the three stencil background patterns that come with the kit as well as the three colors I'd chosen: Pacific Point, Crushed Curry, and Real Red.  Here are a few of the banners up close.

     Once the backgrounds were done, I needed to decided what colors I was going to use for the letters to spell Malcolm's name.  Finally, just to simplify my life, I stenciled all the letters using Real Red. Yes, there is a stencil for every letter of the alphabet!

     I also wanted to use some wide ribbon in between each banner.  The Crushed Curry Striped Grosgrain Ribbon in my stash was perfect.  Alas, I did not have any other color that would work.  Then I remembered all those boxes of retired product that I've still not advertised on eBay, and I knew where retired ribbons were.  Sure enough, there was the retired Pacific Point Ribbon!. Perfect.  You gotta love it when being lazy pays off!

     After making this banner, I still have plenty of banner blanks left.  But even if I didn't, Stampin' Up! sells the blank canvas paper pennants and the the jute twine for hanging the banner is a separate Refill Kit! 

     I see more banners in my future.  Do you have birthdays, showers, graduations – anything like that coming up! This is SOOOO easy and so much fun. You should try it out!  Here's all you need to make your own Build a Banner!


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Posted on : Jan 25 2015
Posted under 3D Projects, Stampin' Up! Kits |

Congrats! A BIG My Paper Pumpkin Kit!

Aloha, all!

     The "My Paper Pumpkin" kits are getting bigger and oh so better!  I've always liked them (though not all have been to my taste), but the latest kit for April 2014 is amazing.  There is enough Stampin' Up! product in the fun red box to make EIGHT CARDS!  And, with my stash of Stampin' Up! Stamp Sets and Embellishments, it gives me even more opportunities to experiment with the Stampin' Up! designs.


     For this card, the only thing that I added was the "Hooray for today" stamp from the Stamp Set, Geometrical.  Everything else is from the kit!  I even used the Island Indigo Ink Spot included in the kit to stamp the extra image.  And, yes, there are TWO Ink Spots in this kit, along with the die cut wooden embellishment, the champagne-colored self-adhesive glitter dots, and the beautifully pre-printed card.  Oh, and I can't forget those fab Photopolymer Stamps – two of them!.  They are designed so that you can stamp images in a row and they look just like the stamp is as long as the stamping.  That's one of the big benefit of Photopolymer Stamps – you can see right through them to the paper and stamp perfectly every time!  As these are solid type stamps, I find I usually have to season the image a bit for it to pick up the ink so that the image is fully covered.  No – not with salt and pepper!  With an eraser or piece of rubber.  I have a pink rubber eraser and I just erase across the whole stamp.  This set still isn't seasoned fully, so I did have to fill in a bit with my Stampin' Write Markers.  But they're well on their way.

AprilMPP     Here's a picture of the whole set.  Besides the Congratulations die cut wood pieces, there are also four "Thank You" die cuts.  Oh, and the envelopes have the gold foil liners that I've come to love in Stampin' Up! kits – I hope that keeps up!

     Of course I had a reason for making this card.  I sent it out to my grandson last week so that he'd get it on Absolutely Incredible Kid Day last week.  You might remember that I made a digital scrap page for that special day.  But the whole point of the day is to let a child know that we think he's incredible.  So that's what our note inside this card says.  He and his performing arts academy just put on a show at the Vancouver Mall in Vancouver, Washington, and we were so happy to see videos of his performances.  He should definitely have been congratulated for his great performance!

     While I'm on the subject of My Paper Pumpkin, there's a special going on right now!  If you sign up for My Paper Pumpkin before March 31, 2014, you'll receive a FREE SET OF IN COLOR MARKERS!  The markers will be sent with your introductory kit which also includes an acrylic block for use with all the stamps that you receive in all your My Paper Pumpkin kits. 

     These kits really are lots of fun, and I hope you'll sign up so you can have as much fun as I do when I get mine in the mail every month!

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Posted on : Mar 23 2014
Posted under Family and Garden, Stampin' Up! Kits, Stamping |

Fun With a New Card Kit! Thank You Notes Part II

Aloha, all!

     Finally I'm getting back to posting some of the Thank You note cards that I've made to send holiday Thank You messages to my friends.  And it happened about the same time I needed to make a card for the Stampin' Up! Only Challenge blog post with the them, "Fun With New Toys!"

     By the way – did  you know that this is National Thank You Month?!  What perfect timing!  I've almost got all of my Holiday 2013 Thank You notes done and the last of them will go in the mail today!  These two cards will be two of them!


     Both of these cards are made with the brand new Happenings Simply Created Card Kit and the coordinating Says It All Stamp Set.  The stamp set has four stamps in it, and I've just used two – because I needed Thank You cards, of course!  Here is a photo of the complete stamp set:

Stamp Set

     There's one item in the card on the left that's not included in the kit.  That's the mat made of Strawberry Slush Cardstock.  I wanted to make the two cards for this blog pretty much as the cards have been designed for the kit.  But I felt that the color values of the Pear Pizzazz Die Cut Banner and the background Smoky Slate Designer Paper were just too close.  As Strawberry Slush is one of the colors featured in the kit, I chose that color for the thin mat to offset the two kit elements just a bit.  I also placed the Silver Glimmer Paper Die Cut piece a bit differently that in the kit's photo.  Now that it's done, I think I like the kit's design for this a bit more.  But it's still a cute card that I won't be embarrassed to send at all!

     Now about that card on the right.  As frequently happens, I did not stamp the Thank You quite straight.  And yes, I did use my Stamp-a-ma-jig.  I was just in too much of a hurry and didn't pay attention to what I was doing.  Slow down, Robin!!!  Anyway, what I ended up doing was being a lot more careful to stamp the border image above and below the Thank You stamp.  Then I very carefully hand trimmed the die-cut piece on which I'd done the stamping so that the whole think looks straight – which of course it now is!  It's just a bit smaller than the original design.

     These kits really are worth every penny!  There are 15 complete cards (all you need in addition to the kit contents are the adhesives you want to use), including envelopes (not mentioned in the catalog, but there are envelopes for these cards).  And the price is only $14.95.  Even with tax and shipping, that's barely more than $1 a card!  Even if you buy the stamp set, too, each card will cost well under $2 a piece.  You cannot get that great a price anywhere these days.  And you'll have the stamp set to keep for other projects, too!

     As always, you can click here to shop in my Stampin' Up! store.  And if you're just interested in reading more about this kit, click here or the Stamp Set, click here!  I'm sure you'll have fun with them!

     And if you happen to have some new Stampin' Up! "toys," be sure to make something and enter it in the SU! Only Challenge blog!  Oh, and the "new" doesn't have to be in the new Occasions Catalog – just something that's new to you and you'd like to try out and show off how much fun you had with it!

    Just in case you might be interested in some other ideas for Thank You cards, here are some that I've posted recently.  As with the kits I used in today's project, you can purchase any of the products in ANY of these projects from me in my Stampin' Up! store!


Posted on : Jan 13 2014
Posted under Stampin' Up! Kits, Stamping |