Patriotic Colors!

Aloha, all!

     Tomorrow is the official beginning of the season of Summer (in the Northern Hemisphere of this fair planet) and it's definitely time to be thinking of the summertime activities that the month of July brings. For us in the United States and Canada, July brings with it our celebrations of Independence Day – July 1st for Canada and July 4th for the United States. Today also brings the latest Stampin' Up! Only Challenge, with its very seasonal theme for us of Patriotic Colors. In the United States, it's Hooray for the Red, White and Blue! So those are the colors I picked for this challenge (of course!)

     I'm not by any means an expert in which Red and which Blue we're supposed to use for patriotic colors of the United States. But I have to tell you that Night of Navy, a true blue Stampin' Up! dark blue, was just too dark for me to use in this project. I wanted something a bit lighter and airier. So out came my Pacific Point. This has nothing to do with the fact that I live in the middle of the Pacific Ocean. Oh, wait. Maybe it does? Oh, whatever – that's the blue I picked, so there!

     I've been trying as much as possible to show off cards here that have both an image and a sentiment to feature so that those of you who like to copy what I do can just pull out one stamp set. And, if you're thinking of buying something that you could use for the project, you only have to shop for one stamp set. This time it's the set, Watercolor Words, with that fun sketched star and the "hooray" sentiment.

     After I put the Real Red Cardstock on the Whisper White Cardstock layer, I thought it needed some texture. While the Softly Falling Textured Impressions Embossing Folder was initially meant to invoke the idea of snow, I think it does an equally nice job of evoking of the idea of fireworks falling from the sky. So Softly Falling it was for the texture. After that, I definitely needed some stars, so I selected two different colors – at the top there are 3 gold stars from the Metallics Enamel Shapes set, and at the bottom 3 Real Red stars from the Brights Enamel Shapes set. After the final mat of Pacific Point Cardstock and the card base of the Whisper White Thick Cardstock were added, the card was done! Red, White and Blue it is!!

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Posted on : Jun 19 2017
Posted under Challenges, Sizzix, Stamping |

My 2 Favorite New Colors!

Aloha, all!

     With 5 brand new colors being offered by Stampin' Up! in its latest catalog, I've quickly come to the realization that Berry Burst is my favorite new color. The realization was courtesy of my being down to my last sheet of the Berry Burst Cardstock! Not to worry. I have a whole pack on order. But there is a number 2 in the running for favorite, and that's Tranquil Tide. And boy do they go nicely together!

     I was looking for another stamp set (can't remember which one) to use for a challenge card. The challenge involved using new colors as well as Designer Series Paper. When my fingers flipped past the Artistically Asian Stamp Set, I stopped and went back to the set. I pulled it off of the shelf and the layout immediately came to mind.

     The most difficult part of this project was getting the floral image to stamp cleanly. I colored the image using my Stampin' Write Markers, and, as this is a rubber stamp not a photopolymer stamp, I had to continue to move my stamp around in the light to make sure that I was getting all parts of the image colored with the correct color. Applying the Berry Burst Marker was the hardest. After some practice on scrap paper, I moved over to the Color Theory Designer Series Paper I planned to use and applied the stamp being guided by my Stamp-a-ma-jig. And, yes, I did have to stamp it more than once. I have to say that all the effort was worth it!

     The next part that I had to work a bit on was using the Stitched Shapes Framelits to make both of the shapes I wanted to make a part of my layout. The square was easy as the framelits are square (or round or oval – but square for this card). To make the smaller rectangle, I first cut another square of the same size, with the sentiment towards the bottom of the die-cut square. Then I ran this through the Big Shot again, having moved the top of the framelit down so that it was just above the sentiment. I slide the framelit around a bit until it felt like the "stitch" notches fit properly into the already die-cut piece. It worked! I'd done this before, but I don't do it enough not to worry about it, especially when I'm using up Designer Series Paper pieces!

     To finish, I had to make a choice about which of the two colors I was using: which would be the cardstock background and which would be the ribbon. You can see my choice, and I think that this is just lovely. If I didn't have so many new stamp sets and other papers and colors to use right now, I might actually try this card again reversing the colors! Maybe in the future. We'll see.

     Meanwhile, you might be interested in the products that I used for this project. If so, please click on the photos below to learn more about them and even to order them in my Stampin' Up! Store – which is open 24/7/365!


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Posted on : Jun 17 2017
Posted under Challenges, Sizzix, Stamping |

Coffee in a CASE!

Aloha, all!

     The "CASE" in the subject of this post refers to a stamper's practice of using someone else's design as the basis for a new – or nearly new – project. CASE stands for Copy And Share with Everyone. In this case (double meaning here!), I was given the challenge of CASEing this project on page 126 of the latest Stampin' Up! Annual Catalog.

     While I love the Daisy theme, I had another stamp set in my new collection that I'd yet too use. So out came the Coffee Café Stamp Set and Coffee Cups Framelits Dies.

     I even used the coordinating Coffee Break Designer Series Paper set for this card! This set of paper has become my go-to favorite to use with lots of different stamp sets. When you look at a set of Designer Series Paper in the Stampin' Up! catalog, don't be too distracted by the designs that seem to be made for just one stamp set. Every sheet has another side to it, and sometimes those are the best sides as far as I'm concerned. While I'm sure I'll eventually use the sheet from this set that has coffee pots and cups all over it – or coffee beans or branches all over – I'm definitely going to be using the "other sides" a lot this coming year. There are two of those on this card.

     A fun part of the Coffee Café stamp set is that there are two sentiment stamps that fit right onto the coffee cup shape. Love this! And finally Stampin' Up! has given us a gorgeous roll of ribbon in the Garden Green Color – one of the 3/8" Stitched Satin Ribbon spools that has had other colors featured in past catalogs. And the final touch for this card is that I added a few of the Metallic Sequins Assortment.

     This was a fun and easy card to make, especially since I didn't have to do too much in the way of figuring out a layout. And I got to use yet another of my new stamp sets! If you'd like to experience some of the fun, be sure to check out my very own Stampin' Up! Store, which is open online just for you 24/7/365. Or click on any of the pictures below to learn more about that product before you order it!



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Posted on : Jun 15 2017
Posted under CASEing Projects, Sizzix, Stamping |

If Life Gives You Lemons….

Aloha, all!

     The good thing for me is that life doesn't make a habit of giving me lemons!  But I was quite happy to see the wonderful Lemon Zest Stamp Set appear in the newest Stampin' Up! Catalog. What fun it has been playing with that set and the punches that coordinate so well with it. It also had meant that, finally, I am making good use of my long-neglected Crushed Curry Ink.

     Once I decided to use this set, and to make the lemons the color of Crushed Curry, I had to decide which green I wanted to use to coordinate. After some trial and error, I found that I really liked Old Olive Ink for the lemon leaves and the cardstock accent color. The next step was to decide on which of the many crushed current Designer Series Papers I would use for this project. When I narrowed my choice down to two of the sheets from the Color Theory Designer Series Paper Stack, I couldn't decide whether to use the light or darker sheet. So – of course! – I used both! The technique of taking two sheets of paper or cardstock and turning one slightly one way and the other in the other direction is not one I've used a lot. But it really works nicely here, I think.

     The sentiments in this stamp set are a lot of fun to use, and they're very definitely of the mix-and-match variety. I chose the two in this card just because I love the word Zest. It just makes me feel perky, whether I'm in the kitchen zesting a piece of citrus, or in my craft room looking at this stamp set! I stamped the two sections of the sentiment on one piece of cardstock, and notched it on one end using with the Banner Triple Punch.

     Using punches was the theme of the day with this card. I used the new Lemon Builder Punch to punch both the full lemon and the leaves after I had stamped them with the Curry and Olive colors. Then I stamped two of the "slices" and punched those out using the 1-3/4" Circle Punch. for which these slices were designed. Perfect!

     After I adhered all the layers and punched pieces together, I tied it all together with a knot made of the new Old Olive 3/8" Mini Chevron Ribbon, and then sprinkled some Crushed Curry Enamel Shapes from the Regals Collection of the enamel shapes. I adhered it all to a card base made of Whisper White Thick Cardstock. Love that thick cardstock for a card base – and now we have Very Vanilla for that, too! More about that in a future post.

     Meanwhile, you might well be interested in some of these products. So here's a list. Click on any of the pictures and you'll be taken directly to my very own Stampin' Up! Online Store where you can learn more about the products as well as buy them when you're ready! One thing that you'll notice is that the Lemon Zest Stamp Set can be bundled with the Lemon Builder Punch with a 10% discount for buying them together in a bundle. Definitely a deal!


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Posted on : Jun 13 2017
Posted under Punches, Stamping |

Message in a Bottle Stamp Set!

Aloha, all!

     Yes, the first stamp set I used out of the box is all about a bottle! In this case, the fun new Stampin' Up! Message in a Bottle Stamp Set.

     If you look at the picture of the stamp set at the end of this post, you'll see that there are quite a few things that can be stamped inside this bottle – "I Love You" messages; an octopus; a whale; a ship (my husband's retired Coast Guard, and I dare not call that image a boat!); and, of course, this cute little mermaid. There are sentiments to go with all of these images, along with some fun toppers for the bottle.

     But my heart strings were plucked by that cute little mermaid and her delightful smile! So she was it. Then I had to go find some paper to help me decide what my layout would be like. As I went through all my new paper (and, no, I haven't bought it all yet), I stopped dead when I saw the heart design on the Coffee Break Designer Series Paper. Who would have thought I'd find exactly what I wanted in this paper set? I had been thinking I'd make the "water" in the bottle using Pool Party ink. But Soft Sky is one of the colors in this set of papers – and, it happens, on the reverse of the same sheet as the hearts that originally caught my eye. So I decided to use both sides of this sheet of paper, and split the card in half in the landscape direction.

     Before I added the layers of paper onto a mat of Early Espresso (another color in the papers), I tied a piece of Soft Sky 3/8" Classic Weave Ribbon around the Designer Series Papers where they met in the middle. Finally, I stamped, colored, and cut out (by hand) the bottle with the little mermaid in it. The colors on the mermaid are Garden Green, Peekaboo Peach, and Pumpkin Pie, all of which I applied using Blender Pens. I penned in her skin lightly, and varied the other colors a bit. Love that red headed mermaid!

     The sentiment at the bottom of the card is made up of two sentiments from the stamp set. I set them apart a bit so that I could add a heart shape from the Garden Green Enamel Shapes sheet which is part of the Regals Enamel Shapes set. How nicely that ties in with the design on the paper!

     So that's my first project from my big new catalog order. I'm pretty sure that I know which set will be part of my next project, but I won't let the cat out of the bag (no, that's not a hint) until I actually set ink to paper! Meanwhile, here are the main products I featured in today's project. My Stampin' Up! Store is open for business 24/7/365, so be sure to click on a product if you think it's one you might like to have. Or just call or e-mail me to let me know you'd like to order something, and I can do it for you! My e-mail address and phone number are at the top of this page!


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Posted on : Jun 11 2017
Posted under Stamping |

Out In the Garden With Delightful Daisies!

Aloha, all!

     With all the new Stampin' Up! Catalog excitement, I haven't forgotten that today is the day for the biweekly Stampin' Up! Only Challenge post! Believe it or not, we picked these themes for the challenges many months ago. We had no idea that Stampin' Up! was going to give us Demonstrators the opportunity to pre-order the lovely  Delightful Daisy Suite of products from the new catalog. This has just got to be THE perfect suite of products for this challenge.

     I was tempted to get out my new Daisy Punch and show off the Daisy Stamp from the Daisy Delight Stamp Set. But the punch is already on back order (can you believe that Stampin' Up! demonstrators snatched them all up?! I can because we all want to show them off to our customers so you'll buy them, too! But Stampin' Up! is taking care of that and promises the punch will be back in stock soon.

     So then I was going to use the smaller stamps in the stamp set (lovely all!) until I started looking at paper to feature in my card. There, right in the middle of a sheet of paper from the Delightful Daisy Designer Series Paper set was this lovely (am I overusing that word?) bouquet of flowers. Yes, there are some daisies in that bouquet. But there are also some fun tulips that will go beautifully with the new hostess set, Tranquil Tulips. But that's for another post.

     Let's just say that I figured I could not make a prettier bouquet than this one. So I cut it out with an oval from the Layering Ovals Framelits Set, matting it with the pattern on the other side of the same sheet, using a scalloped oval from the same Framelits set.

     I did finally use something from the Daisy Delight Stamp Set when I stamped the sentiment. I tried to curve the sentiment stamp a bit to fit into one of the banner shapes from the Banners for You Stamp Set, and almost made it just as I envisioned it. I need more practice! Then I punched the banner out using one of the dies from the Bunch of Banners Framelits set, mounted that and the oval die-cuts onto a piece of Old Olive Cardstock that I'd embossed using the Petal Burst Textured Impressions Embossing Folder.

     I tied the card front all together with a piece of the brand new Daffodil Delight 1/4" Double Stitched Ribbon. I'm so excited about all the new ribbon in the catalog this year! And I'm sure that this is going to remain one of my favorites!

     So that's it for today's project. The challenge over at SUO Challenges goes for two weeks. Maybe you'll have some new products related to your garden that you'd like to show off? If so, be sure to go over to their blog post and enter the challenge!

Posted on : Jun 05 2017
Posted under Challenges, Sizzix, Stamping, SUO Challenges |

Color Fusers Blog Hop: June 2017

Aloha, all!

     The Color Fusers Blog Hop has been on a bit of a vacation the past few months. But now the group is up and running again, with many new as well as returning members. I'm so glad to see all the fun projects using this month's color challenge:

     I've been having so much fun practicing with my watercoloring this past month that I just latched onto those middle three colors and went with a Watercolor Words Stamp Set card.

     The reason that those colors really appealed to me is that all three of them are in the Stampin' Up! Watercolor Pencils set! So I stamped away with the outline flowers and leaves in the stamp set and then colored them all in with the watercolor pencils. After they were colored in with the pencils, I lightly brushed them all with a watercolor brush with just the teensiest bit of water on it. This worked perfectly with the Whisper White Cardstock that I used for the stamped layer.

     I picked the sentiment for this as I have a card I want to send to a friend this week, and it's a "just because I feel like writing" card. So "Just for You" seemed to fit that bill.

     As I've been working on some designs for a new tutorial booklet this past week or so, I came across a card layout I made 5 or 6 years ago, and I'd used four layers for a sentiment section to bring out two of the featured colors. So I did that with this card, too, especially as this is a color challenge type of blog hop.

     The ribbon is brand new in the Stampin' Up! 2017-2018 Annual Catalog. It's a new 3/8" Mini Chevron Ribbon, and the color is, for sure with this challenge, Bermuda Bay.

     And, no, you will not find Basic Gray in this card, althought I considered making little gray dots all over the background using a small dot from another stamp set. But, as I was making this card, I had my work table pretty much cleaned up awaiting my imminent Stampin' Up! New Catalog Product delivery. Once I get more than one stamp set out, neatness quickly deteriorates into messy. Not happenin' right now!

Here are links to the other stampers in our blog hop. All their work is terrific and I'm sure you'll enjoy the whole hop! Be sure to come back here later in the week so see what I've got to show off from the new catalog!

Paola Phillips
Jo Anne Hewins
Melissa Kerman
Robin Messenheimer – You're Here!
Pat Ertman
Debbie Henderson
Cindee Wilkinson
Sarah Wills
Barb Mullikin
Tammy Civello


Posted on : Jun 05 2017
Posted under Challenges, Color Fuser's Blog Hop, Stamping, Watercoloring |

Happy 75th Birthday to My Husband, Harry!

Aloha, all!

     Today is a very special day as we're celebrating my husband's 75th Birthday. I mentioned this last week when I posted his birthday card a bit early so that I could enter it in the Stampin' Up! Only Biweekly Challenge.

     But it could not be such a special birthday without some really fun and unusual gift. It all started at Christmas time when we treated ourselves to a new camera. It was really my husband who wanted a "good" camera so that he could learn how to take artistic photographs of his garden. Yes, we both could go out and take photos of palms and orchids and other tropical wonders in our garden. But he wanted to do more. So, not only did we buy the camera (a nice Nikon Digital SLR with a couple of lenses). We also bought a DVD course in Photography as well as the Nikon D3400 for Dummies book to go with our new toy.

     And, except for some garden photos I took for a digital scrapbook before our last trip to visit family, nothing else has been done with the camera. And I took those photos – with an automatic setting, to boot! So I decided that now might be a good time to spring for some one-on-one photo lessons for Harry.

     We're spending this weekend at the Hawaii Volcanoes National Park, and I found some photographers who live in the town of Volcano who were available to spend this afternoon and evening with Harry to give him some photography lessons.

     As the photographer who is the one who'll actually be working with Harry wanted to talk with him before hand, I couldn't keep this as a secret gift. And, boy, did that start an avalanche! All this week and last, Harry has been working with a neighbor – also a photographer, though a hobbyist, not a professional – to learn how to use all the bells and whistles on his (well, really still "ours," but not at the moment) camera. So today we'll have the professional's take on those lessons as we hike through the forest and other areas of the National Park and, finally, in the evening, photograph the lava in Halemaumau Crater after dark.

     So that brings me to the final little gift I made for Harry in my Craft Room. This is a covered mini-notebook that Harry will be able to keep in his pocket and use to make notes as the afternoon and evening go on. And I'm sure there will be plenty of room for notes as he goes through his garden over the next few weeks. The scrapbook that we take to visit family this summer will be all HIS photographs, and Harry will be able to talk with our daughter – herself a professional photographer! – about how he took his photos. I can hardly wait!

     The paper that I used to cover this little notebook is from the Pick a Pattern Designer Series Paper set. This particular piece of paper is the main reason that I bought this set during the Stampin' Up! demonstrator pre-order period and didn't wait until now to order it. Perfect, don't you think?! I do, for sure!


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Posted on : Jun 03 2017
Posted under 3D Projects, Family and Garden, Stamping |

The New Stampin’ Up! Catalog is Here!

Aloha, all!

     As this blog post is being published, I am in the full swing of placing my first full order from the newest Stampin' Up! Catalog – the 2017-2018 Stampin' Up! Annual Catalog. I've been waiting for this day since I first saw the catalog online a month and a half ago. It was bad enough when we demonstrators got to see it a month before it went live. But with the new schedule, we're being teased evern earlier!

     Now you, too, can see the catalog today by clicking here. And, while I'm sure you've seen many samples of products that we were allowed to pre-order before today, I thought I'd take the time today to show you a project that I CASEd from the new catalog. Check out page 146 to see the original.

     For my version of this project, I used both sides of two of the sheets of paper in the Delightful Daisy Designer Series Paper set. The White and Navy Blue Daisy pattern is on one side of a sheet and the Old Olive leaf print is on the other. The Floral Print is on the other side of the Calypso Coral graphic design. The ribbon is the Daffodil Delight 1/4" Double Stitched Ribbon. There are two other colors of this ribbon, and I've ordered them both. Actually I've ordered a BUNCH of ribbon, though not all that is new in the catalog. Suffice it to say that I have enough to keep me for a while.

     The "Thank You" sentiment is from the Daisy Delight Stamp Set, which also includes the line of daisies that I stamped along the bottom of the Calypso Coral paper strip. The actual stamp has 3 little daisies, but they do stamp nicely in a row.

     Oh, and about this card – I've already sent it out to a dear friend who had us over for dinner at her gorgeous ocean front home just a couple of weeks ago. She's always so appreciative of cards that I make, and I love making them for her!

     Even though I'm ordering from the new catalog on the first day I can, I still won't get my order until late next week – maybe at last as early the following week. Do you know how many Stampin' Up! Demonstrators and Customers are at their computers or tablets at this very moment placing a first-day order??? Absolutely a lot. I guess if I wanted to pay a bit extra for special handling, I could. But I think I want to use that money to buy new products! I do have a class scheduled this month, but it's not until the 19th. So there's no reason to speed things up because of that. Or maybe there is. Hmmmm.

     As I write this, I don't have access to the online pictures or links related to products I'm featuring in this project. But I'll get on here and update this post later today. If you're interested in anything in the new catalog, you can just go directly to my Stampin' Up! Online store!

     Meanwhile, you might want to know the one thing that I'm ordering from this catalog that I could not possibly do without. It's the Climbing Orchid Bundle. Oh, I can hardly wait to color up some of those orchids to mimic those real orchids we have growing in our garden! I'll be posting one of those as soon as I get everything put away next week! And that bundle will be featured in my class later this month, too.


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Posted on : Jun 01 2017
Posted under Announcement, CASEing Projects, Stamping |

An Early Birthday Card for My Husband!

Aloha, all!

     At the end of next week, my husband will celebrate his 75th birthday. That's a big one as far as I'm concerned. Actually, at our age, every birthday is a big one! But from now on, any that ends in a 5 or a 0 will get extra special treatment. Extra special in the case of Harry's birthday card is one that's made with the popular Pop Up Twist design. (OK – everyone I know calls is the "Twist Pop Up" card. But I just like the way it rolls off my tongue when I say, "Pop Up Twist."

     This is also the day that the Stampin' Up! Only Challenge group starts its next challenge, which is to make a Masculine style card. No frou-frou or flowers this time! But that doesn't mean that it can't be a really nice card, and I think that this one is!

     As with most of my recent cards, I made today's project using a retiring set of Designer Series Paper. Yep, just one retiring product – the Floral Boutique Designer Series Paper. And wouldn't you know that it's already beyond retired – it's gone! Don't forget – even though it might still be on a page in your catalog, if it's retiring, it could run out soon! So don't hesitate to order something you might really like! Order at my Stampin' Up! Online Store!

     To decorate the front of the card, I used the Balloon Celebration Stamp Set to stamp the "strings" and three solid balloon in the background. Then I punched balloons from the Designer Series Paper using the Balloon Bouquet Punch. I adhered two of them using SNAIL adhesive and two using Stampin' Dimensionals to pop them up a bit.

     For the inside of the card, after I'd adhered two sheets of paper to the top and bottom, I stamped the "Look Who's Turning" and "Happy Birthday" using stamps from the Number of Years Stamp Set. For the Pop Up section, I stamped two more balloons – this time just the outlines – on the two center sections. Then I die cut the 7 and 5 using the Designer Series Paper and the Large Number Framelits die set. I cut the two hearts using the heart shape in the Sunshine Wishes Thinlits set. That's all I put on this as you really need to keep the layers in the folded section a bit on the flat side so that the card will close cleanly.

     I debated adding some embellishments onto the front of the card. But my final decision was not to as I think this card has enough interest with its Pop Up feature. And those balloons on the front are in three different layers, and that seems to add a bit of interest.

     I hope that you like this idea for a masculine card and will try either this or some other design to enter into the Stampin' Up! Only Challenge this time. It runs through June 3rd, and that's actually my husband's birthday. We're going on a short vacation to celebrate, and I know he'll love this card. If you'd like to try out this Pop Up Twist technique, I highly recommend the Split Coast Stampers website. The video there was definitely helpful!

     Here are the products I used for this project. All of these products are in the current Stampin' Up! Catalogs AND will be in the upcoming 2017-2018 Stampin' Up! Annual Catalog!


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Posted on : May 22 2017
Posted under Challenges, Family and Garden, Punches, Sizzix, Stamping, SUO Challenges |