Aloha for the Month of April!

Aloha, all!

     Aloha means many things here in Hawai'i. When I use it to greet you each time I write a blog post here, I mean it as a sense of wishing you an affectionate, "Hello." When people speak of "living the aloha spirit," they are talking about the sense that we should live in peace and with love and compassion.

     But today, I'm using it in another way, as I'm saying goodbye to you – but just for a very short time! My husband and I are taking an extended vacation during the month of April to visit family all over the United States mainland, including attending the wedding of one of our nephews in the Washington, D. C., area. Of course I've made a personal card for the bride and groom, and my last post until I return is featuring that card.

     When I first saw the Lucky Elephant Stamp Set in the Stampin' Up! 2017 Occasions Catalog, I wondered if it would be appropriate as a card for this wedding, especially as our nephew is marrying a woman of Indian heritage. Surely I'd be able to use it! Then, when my sister-in-law said that the bride was going to be wearing a "stunning gold tunic with a red gown" for the wedding reception, I knew JUST what I was going to do with this elephant – Emboss it in Gold on Real Red Cardstock.

     After that, I tried to use all kinds of other gold products in the Stampin' Up! catalogs. But every time I tried to add something such as the Gold Foil Doilies or the Gold Ribbon or Gold Twine, the card just started to look too gaudy. And gaudy wasn't what I wanted. I wanted something simple and, hopefully, elegant. I do think that the final card has that feeling.

     The gold embellishments, both the circles on the rug on the back of the elephant and the hearts in the background are from the Metallic Enamel Shapes assortment. After I matted the main stamped layer using Gold Glimmer Paper, I felt that was all I needed.

     The sentiment is from another stamp set in the 2017 Occasions Catalog, Beautiful You. I seems to fit right in. There is a bit of fussy cutting work with the rug on the elephant's back. For that, I stamped and embossed just that part of the Elephant stamp on Pacific Point Cardstock. I then cut it out along the outside edge of the elephant stamp and just above the bottom part of the rug. (My first try was to stamp/emboss on Whisper White and then on Very Vanilla Cardstock, and color in the empty spaces with the Pacific Point. After not liking what I ended up with, I had the "duh" moment that led me to stamp/emboss on Pacific Point cardstock itself. Well, duh!

     Here are the products I feature in this card. Even though Robin's Craft Room will be on vacation, don't forget that my Stampin' Up! store is open all year, regardless of my personal plans. Just click on any of the pictures below to go to that store, learn more about any of the products, and then buy them if you'd like!

     Aloha for a month!

    


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Posted on : Mar 30 2017
Posted under Announcement, Family and Garden, Stamping |

Getting Ready for my Next Newsletter – Sign Up This Week!

Aloha, all!

     I've been really busy getting ready for a long trip that will begin on April 3rd, and I've not had much time for crafting at all! But I have had some time in my craft room, and this week it's mostly about getting ready for my next newsletter – which will be early for a change. I'm planning to have it ready to e-mail out by Saturday, April 1st.

     This Diamond Fold card is one I've been meaning to try out, and I thought it would be a fun project for Springtime. I have written a short tutorial explaining how to make this fairly simply fold and I'll be including it in my upcoming Newsletter. As you can see, you can use any cardstock and/or Designer Series Papers for this card, so you're certainly not limited to those in this sample. But I'll give you all the measurements for all the layers you see here, along with cutting and scoring instructions!

     Anyone who signs up for my newsletter will not only get a link to the tutorial for this card, but will also find a link to a darling and quick-to-make gift box for Easter or other Spring treats. So sign up for my newsletter by March 31st! There will be other Stampin' Up! news as well!


Posted on : Mar 29 2017
Posted under Announcement, Stamping |

It’s Almost April!

Aloha, all!

     The theme for this week's Stampin' Up! Only Challenge is, "My Favorite April Theme." For me that's easy as I only ever think of April in terms of two ditties: "30 Days Hath September, April, June and November…." and "April Showers Bring May Flowers." The former of these two doesn't really add itself to being the theme of a greeting card. But the latter certainly does, especially when there are raindrops on Designer Series Paper and an Umbrella in a favorite Stamp Set!

     The Designer Series Paper used throughout this project is from the A Little Foxy Designer Series Paper Stack. And the lovely lady with the umbrella is from the Beautiful You Stamp Set from the Stampin' Up! 2017 Occasions Catalog. (By the way, this Stamp Set will NOT retire at the end of the Occasions Catalog's Sales Period. Yay!)  The sentiment on the card is made up of two of the many words in the Crazy About You Stamp Set.

     It's been quite a while since I've done some paper piecing with a stamp, but I just had to try it out with the image of the lady with the umbrella. To make this work the way I wanted it to, I stamped the image THREE times.

  • The first time I stamped it using Memento Tuxedo Black Ink onto the top layer of Designer Series Papers.
  • The second time I stamped it (same ink) onto Whisper White Cardstock, which I cut out by hand and adhered to the first stamped image. (I used a retired Blush Blossom Stampin' Write Marker to color her legs and upper back. There are ways to mix current Stampin' Up! colors to get a nice light flesh tone, too. But I prefer the Blush Blossom as long as I have it. If you'd rather have skin with a darker color, one that I've found that looks nice is Soft Suede applied with a Blender Pen.)
  • The final time, I stamped the image (same ink) onto a piece of Calypso Coral/Whisper White print from the A Little Foxy paper set. Then I cut out the dress and umbrella and adhered that to the Whisper White image.

     One of the idea cards in the Occasions Catalog gave me the idea for using the Delicate White Doily as an embellishment on the card. It gives the Calypso Coral Cardstock background a bit of texture. I thought the Pool Party 3/8" Stitched Satin Ribbon was also a nice way to separate the two sections of the card. Then the sentiment element brought the two sections back together nicely. I stamped the two words using Calypso Coral Classic Ink, and cut both the sentiment and the paper used to mat the sentiment using one of the dies from the Bunch of Banners Framelits Set.

     The final touch was a mat for the whole card cut from Basic Gray Cardstock. Smoky Slate is one of the colors in the Paper set, but I wanted a darker edge for the card, so went with the Basic Gray.

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     And now a bit more about April. I am going to be away from home and my craft room for most of the month of April. I've found that, when I'm gone for such a long time, I haven't been really successful in trying to keep my blog going for the whole period. In fact, this time, in getting ready for our trip, I've been a bit on the sporadic side in terms of posting. So I've decided to give my blog a bit of a vacation while I'm gone, and start it back up when I get back. I'll post when I leave, but I thought I'd give those of you who have read this far a heads up!

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     Here are the products I used in today's project. As always, just click on any of the photos to go to my very own Stampin' Up! store to ready more about the product and even buy it for yourself! Even when I'm gone, my store is always open – 24/7/365!

 


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Posted on : Mar 27 2017
Posted under Challenges, Sizzix, Stamping, SUO Challenges |

It’s Not Always Easy Taking Photos!

Aloha, all!

     One of my favorite activities in my craft room is taking photos of projects that I've made. I'm sure you can tell that I take a lot of trouble to make sure that what you see on my blog post really shows well what you can do with a Stampin' Up! product. Believe me, if I can do it, so can you! But as often as I use the glittery addition to projects called, "Wink of Stella," I've not been able to capture just how great this sparkly product can look on a project. So today, with a card I made using Wink of Stella Clear, I decided not to try to use the great natural daylight I have coming into my craft room, and waited until it was dark. Then I turned on an Ott Light and turned and twisted this card with one hand until I could see the reflection of the light in the glitter. Then I took my camera in my other hand and snapped away.

     The light worked its charm, and I'm sure that now you can see what this fun product can do with a card! See that glitter on the flower?! It's Wink of Stella at work!!! The bee has some, too, but it's a bit less obvious.

     Now that I've got that out of the way, I can direct your attention to some other features of this card.

     First, this Designer Series Paper is a sheet from the Inside the Lines Designer Series Paper, which is a FREE PRODUCT in this year's Stampin' Up! Sale-a-bration catalog. You've seen it here before if you follow my blog. But this is the first time I've used another new Stampin' Up! product with it – the brand new Stampin' Up! Watercolor Pencils. For this picture, I used the Melon Mambo, Old Olive and Daffodil Delight pencils, and blended them with Stampin' Up! Blender Pens. My watercoloring with the pencils and blender pens is pretty rudimentary. But I still love the way that I can use the same pencil and blender pens to get lighter or darker shades just where I want them. Yes, there are lots of YouTube videos out there that are great for showing you how to decide where the light is coming from so that you can shade "just right." But I think that this coloring looks just fine to me. Hey, the light's coming from directly above – works for me!!

     Here is a list of the Stampin' Up! products I am featuring in this card – which, by the way, is going out to one of my customers for a Thank You for a recent purchase. Did you know that I make my customer purchase Thank You cards specifically designed for you? I look to see what you've ordered, and try to make a card for you that includes one of the products you just bought from me. This customer ordered, among other things, the Inside the Lines Designer Series Paper – which she got for free for one part of her $100+ order! You could be that customer the next time! Just click on the picture of any of the products listed to go to my very own Stampin' Up! store to find out more about the products – and order them on the spot!

     Happy Stamping!

 


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Posted on : Mar 21 2017
Posted under Stampin' Up! Tools, Stamping |

Birthday Blast – A Star of a Stamp Set!

Aloha, all!

     Today's blog post is not just about a stamp set. It's also about a fun Sizzix Edgelits Set that goes with it. I definitely haven't heard the word, "edgelit," in a while, and I didn't even realize how this one worked until I got it in my hot little hands last week. The edgelit can be used by itself, but it's really a Blast when it's used the the Birthday Blast Stamp Set!

     When I put the shape that the main die in this set cuts out over the starry image from the stamp set, the effect is amazing! Before I go into some hints for making a card like this, I'll share some details about the other parts of the card.

     First of all, the colors in this card are both in the 2016-2018 Stampin' Up! In Color set – Emerald Envy and Peekaboo Peach. The greeting is also a part of the Birthday Blast stamp set – it's all in one stamp, so there's no need to stress over lining the two words up. The stars underneath the greeting are from the 2016-2018 Enamel Shapes Set. The final element on the card is the bow made with the Emerald Envy 1/8" Taffeta Ribbon. One of the nice things about showing off a card made with colors in a specific group is that there is usually a set of cardstock that you can buy that includes all the colors in the set. In this case, there's a pack of 8-1/2" x 11" Cardstock that include both of these colors as well as the other 3 colors in this In Color set.

     Now about my trial and error in making this card. Die-cutting the top layer is not much of a hassle at all. I cut a piece of cardstock 4-1/2" high and 4-1/4" wide. I stamped "Happy Birthday" so that the top of the stamp is about 2-1/4" – 2-1/2" up from the bottom edge of the cardstock. Then I placed the edgelit across the cardstock, placing it about 1/4" above the top of the greeting and ran it through the Sizzix Big Shot.

     I set that aside and went to work on the stamped image. For this part of the project, I cut Whisper White Cardstock 5-1/2" high and 4-1/4" wide. Then I stamped the star blast image so that the top of the arch is about 5/8" from the top of the cardstock.

     Finally, I glued the top layer to the stamped layer. I applied adhesive only to the bottom rectangle of the top layer. Then I carefully placed the large center star over the stamped center star and made sure I got the left and right slashes so that they showed through the die-cut slashed leading up to the other two stars. Once I had that arranged, I (again carefully!) laid the lower rectangle down onto the stamped layer, adhering it securely.

     What you have at that point may look like a mess! But not to worry. What you want to do is to cut this grouping into a rectangle that's 5" high and 3-3/4" wide. I began cutting the grouping by making sure that the bottom edge was parallel with the greeting on the top layer. Once I had that edge the way I wanted it I used that edge as much guide to cut the other sides, starting with either the left or right side. I made 3 of these cards, and I found that I trimmed them in a different order each time. One time I made sure I had a squared-off rectangle before I worked on getting the whole thing down to size. There are probably as many ways of doing this as cards I would make. But it's really worth the effort – and it's not really that much effort!

     When it came to the ribbon, I just tied a small bow and adhered it to the base of the star "blast." But, when I had some of my downline make it in a class I had for them, some of them tied the ribbon around the die-cut base and then tied the bow. I think it looked good either way – whichever you prefer!

     Here's a recap of the products I used for this project. Click on any of the photos to get to my Stampin' Up! store to find out more about any of them and even to order them right away! If you have any questions, you can always call me at the phone number shown up near the right top of this page.

 


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Posted on : Mar 19 2017
Posted under Announcement, Sizzix, Stamping |

A Paper Pumpkin Alternative

Aloha, all!

     As you may have noticed if you pay attention both here and on Facebook, I've been a bit scarce with my work of late. We're getting ready for another long (for us) trip next month, and there is SOOO much I have to get done before we go that my Craft Room has been getting short shrift – as has this blog and other stuff. But, when my monthly Paper Pumpkin kit arrived in the mail yesterday, I just had to take a minute to open it up to see what I could do with it.

     As I keep up with the social media sites that chat about Paper Pumpkin, I knew what was in this month's kit, and I knew that half of it was going to be fine, but the other half not so much. The "not so much" part consisted of supplies to make a bunch of 3" x 3" cards. I have absolutely no use for cards of such size. They're too small to mail, and that's how all but a very few of my cards are transmitted to their recipients. On the other hand, I didn't want to waste that part of the kit, so off I went to try to find some alternatives. This was my first try, and I think it's a good start. I'll make some changes on the second try and share them with you once I have them all made up.

     As those of you who have seen this kit surely noticed, the papers are the same design as in the Stampin' Up! Playful Palette Designer Series Paper Stack from the 2016-2017 Annual Catalog. So that's where I went for a larger piece of paper for a background for a full-sized 4-1/4" by 5-1/2" greeting card. Then I started playing with the papers in the Paper Pumpkin kit.

     The first thing that I did was to cut in half all of the 3" x 6" rectangles that made up the card that was to be folded to make the 3" square. The top square in this card is the front of the Peekaboo Peach Design and the bottom square is the back of the Multi-colored Swirl Design. The middle square is the "address" side of one of the envelopes. I simply trimmed around a whole envelop to make it 3" square and the back just fell right off.

     I embossed the Very Vanilla square using the Petal Burst Textured Impressions Embossing Folder which I thought was a good match for the flower petals that I made out of the bunny ears that were in the kit as self-adhesive die-cut shapes. I've already seen some cards made with full flowers from the bunny ears. But there aren't enough to make all the cards that I want to make with this kit. So I have made a tulip-y flower bud instead. The one part of this card that I don't think works so well is the flower stem. I'll do something different next time around. But I do like the bow, and I will be using the ribbon that matches the other colors in this kit in future cards, too.

     So – my first try with the card part of the kit. Believe it or not, I'm going to be able to make really good use of the other part, which is a set of treat bags on which I can stamp bunny faces (yes, the stamp set is included in the kit) and fill with Easter candies. For a change, we are going to be able to share an Easter Dinner with our daughter's family – another two adults and three wonderful grandchildren.

     It was really nice to have a chance to take a break from travel prep (oh, that includes getting our taxes done before we leave as we'll be gone over April 15th – U. S. Income Tax Day!). So it's going to be a challenge. But seeing the grandkids and other family on this trip makes it all worth it.

     Here are the products I feature in this card, not including the March Paper Pumpkin Kit. At this point, I don't know if it will be available for purchase individually. But I'll be sure to let you know if it becomes available. It's a cutie!

 


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Posted on : Mar 18 2017
Posted under Paper Pumpkin, Sizzix, Stamping |

Avant Garden – Maybe the Best Sale-a-Bration Set!

Aloha, all!

     I have been having so much fun using the Avant Garden Stamp Set from this year's Stampin' Up! Sale-a-bration Catalog. I haven't shared it much here because most of what I've done is just stamp its images on flat, blank cards, which isn't really exciting blog post-wise. But this week, I decided I had to share it because I thought it would be a great stamp set with which to make some Thank You notes I'm sending out to customers.

     This is still not all that exciting as greeting card layouts go. BUT it also includes something else that's going to be coming to an end before too very long. It's probably very likely that most, if not all, of the 2015-2017 Stampin' Up! In Colors will be retiring come May 31st. So I'm working hard to use up as much of my retiring inks, papers, and embellishments as I can.

     For this card, I stamped the flower and the sentiment using Watermelon Wonder Stamp Pad, as well as Mint Macaron for the stem and leaves. Sob! Both colors won't be in the In Color section of my craft room any more. One can only hope that both of these great colors will remain in the next Stampin' Up! catalog, perhaps replacing some colors that I hardly ever use. (Yes, I have non-favorites in my Stampin' Up! collection. But that's just a personal preference, so I shall not discuss them here.)

     Then there's the great Designer Series Paper Stacks that are available in all of the colors in the Stampin' Up! Catalog. I used one sheet of the Watermelon Wonder color from the 2015-2017 Subtles Designer Series Paper Stack, with the top half of the card being the print on one side of the sheet and the bottom on the other. I saw another color used this way on Pinterest a while back, and figured it would be fun for this fairly simple card.

     The sentiment is from the Teeny Tiny Wishes Stamp Set. I punched it using the Classic Label Punch. Now, those of you who are familiar with this punch may know it's a lot larger than this photo shows. What I did was to cut the teeny tiny "Thank You" then punch the words so they were over to one side of the punched shape. Then I picked up the punched shape using a sticky note, reinserted it into the punch, and punched just on the other side of the "Thank You," shortening the shape! Much nicer that that small sentiment in the middle of a really long punched shape!

     The ribbon is an embellishment from the 2016-2017 Stampin' Up! catalog – Mint Macaron 3/8" Sheer Linen Ribbon. The good news is that I've almost used up my latest spool of that ribbon. Oh, and that would be the bad news, too. It's probably too late in the year to be stocking up on much that might retire. But that's just for me because I'm a demonstrator, and I try to use at least 99% current Stampin' Up! products in my blog and Facebook posts, as well as in my newsletter. For you, if you like any of these products, now is probably the time to think about finally buying them before they go away! Just sayin'

     Speaking of which, here are the products I featured in today's project. As always, you can click on the pictures of the products and get whisked away to my very own Stampin' Up! store!

 

 


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Posted on : Mar 15 2017
Posted under Punches, Stamping |

Up In The Sky – Things That Fly!

Aloha, all!

     It's time for the new challenge over at the Stampin' Up! Only Challenge blog! This time we changed it up a bit and just picked a theme out of the air. Or, in the air, actually. It's "Things That Fly" this time around, and flying was immediately on my mind when I had the time set aside to make my card for this week's challenge.

     For me, it was flying as in all the airline reservations I've had to make for another of our marathon trips to the United States Mainland next month. There are 8 airplanes on this card, and you'd think that would be enough. But, no. We have to take 12 planes to get to all the places on our itinerary this time around. I was going to try to get all 12 on a card, but I couldn't figure out the design. I had a circle in my head – because we're starting and returning to the same place – home! And this card is large enough (5" x 7") that I didn't want to go large enough for those 12 planes.

     First about the card. Graduation time is coming up, and I'm sure to need a graduation card this year. What a great sentiment to someone who's starting a new part of his or her life – "The Sky's the Limit"! And, of course, the finishing touch with the "Huge Congrats" stamp. All three of these stamps come from different Stampin' Up! Stamp set, all of which are currently available on the Stampin' Up! website.

  •      The plane stamp is in a set that is on the Clearance Rack at Stampin' Up! for a lot less than the $13.95 I paid for it a couple of years ago. The stamp set is called, "Greetings From," and is not only a great set for scrapbooking, but it has wonderful little elements that are great on cards – such as this cute little plane. Get it while it lasts!
  •      The "Sky's the Limit" stamp is from the "Over the Rainbow" stamp set, which is in Stampin' Up!'s annual catalog, and is still very much available.
  •      The "Huge CONGRATS" stamp is from a set called, "Watercolor Wishes," and that's only available as part of an all-inclusive kit called (amazingly) Watercolor Wishes.

     I chose the colors for the planes before I went about figuring out what I was going to use as cardstock and Designer Series Papers. That's why the Daffodil Delight planes look a bit different. I originally made those planes another color. But then, when I went to find paper, I fell in love with the idea of the striped sheet from the Party Animal Designer Series Paper from the Stampin' Up! 2017 Occasions Catalog. The quickest way for me to "fix" my project was just to stamp the plane outlines on Daffodil Delight, cut them out, and glue them over the color that was on there. And, yes, I considered doing that for all the planes; but, no, I didn't want to spend any more time fussy cutting.

     As for my travel next month, all of our plane reservations are made. And so far, 4 of the flight time departures and/or arrivals have changed. One of them involves a change with gives us less than an hour between flights in Atlanta, and one for a similarly short time in Minneapolis. Yikes, those are big airports!!! I guess I should wear good walking (running?) shoes!

     More about my travels later on this month. For now, here are the stamp sets, paper and tools I used for this card. Just click on any of the photos to go directly to my Stampin' Up! store to find out more about them – and even to order them, which would be a really good thing, especially for that stamp set on the clearance rack!

 


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Posted on : Mar 13 2017
Posted under Challenges, Sizzix, Stamping, SUO Challenges |

Fun Colors with Make a Medallion Stamp Set – #4

Aloha, all!

     This is the last of the four identical-except-for-colors Birthday Cards I made last week with the Make a Medallion Stamp Set from this year's Stampin' Up! Sale-a-bration Catalog. And you know by now, if it's in the Sale-a-bration Catalog, you can get it FOR FREE with any $50 Stampin' Up! Purchase.

     You have to admit, this color combination really is a lot different from the rest of the cards (which are all pretty much different from each other, too!). The color that's a rarely-used color for this card is Tempting Turquoise. When have you last seen me use this color??? Not in a very long time. It's so long since I've used it that I still have the old style Stampin' Up! Stamp Pad and Reinker for this color. It's not the only one, but it's definitely a rarity! The other two colors that I used for this card are Peekaboo Peach (which you see a lot in my posts these days), and Night of Navy, which I had out for one of the other cards in this series.

Here are the products I used for this, the fourth in this series. There are still a few more weeks for Sale-a-bration, but I think it's always good not to put off earning Sale-a-bration products until late in the Catalog period (which ends March 31st). You should note that, if you buy the Layering Circle Framelits and the BIG Designer Series Paper Stack, you'll have spent quite enough to get this stamp set FOR FREE! You can click on any of the pictures below and get right to my Stampin' Up! store, where you can order everything 24/7/365!


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Posted on : Mar 13 2017
Posted under Sizzix, Stamping |

Fun Colors with Make a Medallion Stamp Set – #3

Aloha, all!

     Here I am again with yet another card made just like the last two I've posted – with the Make a Medallion Stamp Set and Designer Series Paper Stacks. But the colors are definitely new!

     There's lots of green here, but NO Mint Macaron. While I love it, it needed a rest for a bit. The background color here is Pear Pizzazz which hasn't seen the light of day in my Craft Room in forever! I decided to pair it up with Garden Green, which you've not seen too often of late. I thought that Calypso Coral would go nicely with this combo, but instead I switched to Watermelon Wonder. That made this another fun combination!

     The Designer Series Paper layer is Pear Pizzazz from the Subtles Designer Series Paper Stack. I cut the circles for both the Medallion and its mat using the Layering Circles Framelits set. For the small banner behind the circle layers, I cut a piece of Watermelon Wonder Cardstock using a framelit from the Project Life Cards and Labels Framelits set. Now I know that the banner may look like Calypso Coral. But is my camera is so tired of seeing that color that it will just not recognize the Watermelon Wonder Cardstock? Hmmpf! Anyway, I adhered the banner using SNAIL Adhesive and the circle layers using Stampin' Dimensionals. The sentiment is from the Teeny Tiny Wishes Stamp Set. There are several sentiments in that set that will fit nicely into the center of the medallion – I just happen to have a slew of birthday cards I have to send out in the next month. And now I have them!

     Here are the products I used for today's Make a Medallion Card. Remember that this stamp set is FREE if you purchase $50 of any Stampin' Up! products. If you buy that Layering Circles Framelits set and the BIG Designer Series Paper Stack, that will be enough to get that stamp set FOR FREE!

 


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Posted on : Mar 12 2017
Posted under Sizzix, Stamping |