Remarkable Flower!

Aloha, all!

     As most of you who read Stampin' Up! blogs know, for a short time Stampin' Up! carried a line of alcohol markers. For a number of reasons, Stampin' Up! no longer sells alcohol markers, and I exchanged all those that I, as a demonstrator, had bought for other Stampin' Up! products. Nonetheless, I had become hooked on what I started to be able to do with alcohol markers. So, over the past couple of months, I've been buying another brand of alcohol markers and have started to learn how to use them. I'm hoping it won't be long before I feel as if I know what I'm doing wth them. Meanwhile, I think I'll share with you some of the projects I make as I go through the learning process.


     For today's project, I bought some colors that I thought would coordinate well with Stampin' Up! Bermuda Bay Ink and Cardstock. I do believe I succeeded!

     I've shown you a project already that I've made using the Remarkable You Stamp Set. I made the first one using an oval shape to feature another flower in this set, and, to tell you the truth, I had no intention of using an oval shape for this flower. But once all was said and done, I think that I really like the way that the oval shape shows off the water lily in today's project equally well.

     For the sentiment, I used the new Banner Triple Punch and I matted it with a piece of Bermuda Bay cardstock that I hand-trimmed to a size just slightly larger than the sentiment layer.

     I just love the new Boho Chic Embossing Folder. This is the second time in as many projects that I have used it. This embossing folder has a distinct pattern, so I've tried to make sure that I center my cardstock both vertically and horizontally in the embossing folder. This not only makes the edges look neat, but it also helps me place other elements onto the card so that they're centered just right in either or both directions.

     This card is intended for a very special person who has worked very hard for one of the local volunteer groups for which I also volunteer. The group wanted to send her something special in the way of a Thank You note, and who better in the group to do that than the card-maker! It goes out in the mail today!


Posted on : Jul 28 2015
Posted under Punches, Sizzix, Stamping |

Happy Birthday x 3!

Aloha, all!

     Welcome to the third Blog Hop of this summer for the summer online group, VC Rocks. It was 15 years ago this month that a group of Stampin' Up! lovers who couldn't make it to that summer's Stampin' Up! Convention decided to have a virtual convention online. What a blast it's been all these years, so we've decided that the theme for the July 2015 Blog Hop should be a Celebration of Birthdays.

     As you know, I kind of make things up as I go along, only occasionally having a full-out plan when I start to make cards for anything. But this time I had a plan and I went with it and it ended up as I'd planned it. Go figure! The plan was that I wanted to make three different Birthday Cards using the same three Stampin' Up! Designer Series Paper designs and the same three colors as the featured colors. As I got into the project, I did let one more "three" into the projects and I used three different Stampin' Up! Textured Impressions Embossing Folders (TIEF) for each of the three cards. Once I started photographing the cards, I could see some other opportunities for threes – but I had to stop somewhere!


     All of the cards use the same three sheets of paper from the Pretty Petals Designer Series Paper (DSP) Stack, featuring the three colors, Calypso Coral, Old Olive and Very Vanilla. I saw this basic layout on Pinterest a few weeks ago, and it's been in my head ever since. Now it's out and onto paper! I believe the original just used the DSP. But for this card, I thought a bit of a mat would make the three banners pop a bit. I cut the notches in the DSP and in the stamped greeting layer using the new Banner Triple Punch.  For the background, I used the NEW Boho Chic Embossing Folder. After matting the greeting layer with some Old Olive Cardstock, I added a bow made of the new Calypso Coral Thick Baker's Twine.


     For the second card, I used a layout inspired by the challenge layout in the latest issued of CardMaker Magazine. The DSP elements don't have any mats this time as they are all popped up from the background using Stampin' Dimensionals. To punch these, I used the Scalloped Tag Topper Punch, and then tied a bow at the top of each one. You'll recognize the Calypso Coral Thick Baker's Twine from the first card, and I added some Very Vanilla Thick Baker's Twine for a bit of contract. The background for the top part of the card is texturized with the Decorative Dots Embossing Folder, and I added a threesome of Calypso Coral and Old Olive Candy Dots as an added accent.



     Finally, here's another design that I've seen in so many places made by many different people. It's so simple, but has such a nice look. For the layered gift boxes, I cut each piece out and then adhered them all to a strip of cardstock before tying them together with a piece of the Calypso Coral Thick Baker's Twine. I added Stampin' Dimensionals to raise them a bit from the background layer texturized with the Arrows Embossing Folder.

     Thanks so much for getting this far – I usually don't have this many projects to share in one blog post. But it's been fun thinking about some of the activities we've had in the VC Rock Group each summer that I've been a member. I hope you'll visit the VC Rocks Blog Hop and check out the other Birthday Celebration projects by other members of our group!

Posted on : Jul 24 2015
Posted under Challenges, Punches, Sizzix, 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 |

Sheltering Tree with a Fun Technique

Aloha, all!

     Those of you on my Newsletter Mailing list have already seen this project.  But I thought the rest of you might like to see what fun I had with the Sheltering Tree Stamp Set. The set was first released as part of the 2015 Occasions Catalog, but now it's firmly entrenched in the annual 2015-2015 Stampin' Up! catalog.  And I'm quite please to see it's still around!


     The colors I used for this project are Watermelon Wonder, Cucumber Crush, Soft Suede and Blushing Bride. It's pretty easy to see which colors are where. As always, I love using the Photopolymer Stamp Sets – of which this is one! – because I am able clearly to see where I'm placing my stamps when one image is being placed specifically in relations to another – like the leaves on the tree trunk! Oh, and the background paper is from the Cherry on Top Designer Series Paper Stack. The sheets are definitely large enough to use on a large square card such as this one.

     What's fun and interesting about this card is how I used the large circles in the Sizzix Circles Collection Framelit to just partially die cut the circle. The technique I used is in my newsletter tutorial. If you'd like it, just sign up for my newsletter by July 21st (which is when I hope to get the next newsletter out).  I'll be incuding a link to the June newsletter tutorials in July.


Here are the products featured in this project. Link to my personal Stampin' Up! Store to order any of these!

Sheltering Tree Photopolymer Stamp Set (1371633)
Cherry on Top Designer Series Paper Stack (138443)
Cardstock: Whisper White THICK Cardstock for the card base (140272); Whisper White Cardstock (100730); Cucumber Crush and Watermelon Wonder from the Cherry on Top Cardstock Pack (139002); Pool Party (122924)
Ink: Cucumber Crush Classic Stampin Pad (138324); Watermelon Wonder Classic Stampin' Pad (138323); Blushing Bride Classic Stampin' Pad (131172); Soft Suede Classic Stampin' Pad (126978)
Blushing Bride Candy Dots (from the Subtles Collection – 130933)
Circles Collection Framelits (130911)



Posted on : Jul 18 2015
Posted under Sizzix, Stamping |

Using Project Life Cards for Something Sad

Aloha, all!

     Many of you may already have heard or read that the 16-year old son of a wonderful woman in the crafting community, whom so many people admire, has died suddenly. While I don't personally know Heidi Swapp, it's hard not to have been around crafting and not to have seen some of her work and crafting products. So when Becky Higgins of Project Life – who knows Heidi well – sent out a call for cards for the family of Cory Swapp, it was hard for me not to send something.


     In her call for cards, Becky Higgins asked us to share a quote or scripture or message of hope / encouragement / faith / whatever we feel in our hearst to share.  I decided I would write a note on one of the Stampin' Up! 4" x 4" Project Life cards in my ever-growing stash.  As I looked through them, I found the sentiment that's on the center element of this card. It exactly echoed my thoughts as I was going over this tragedy in my mind. I cut it out of the card from the This is the Life Card Collection and adhered it to the center of a white 4" x 4" card. Then I used the swish stamp from the Work of Art Stamp Set, colored it with the Razzleberry color used in the sentiment, adding some Crushed Curry and Pumpkin Pie, and then stamped it on the top. I added a stamped sentiment from the new Watercolor Wishes Stamp Set. For the bottom of the card, I punched a piece of Rich Razzleberry Cardstock with the Confetti Stars Border Punch. This card may not have a hand-written note, but it says what's in my heart.

     If you've come across the work of Heidi Swapp in your crafting, you may want to send a card, too. All of the information you need is in this Becky Higgins link.


Posted on : Jul 17 2015
Posted under Project Life |

New Stamps 10: Watercolor Words

Aloha, all!

     Have you noticed that "watercolor" is in the names of new stamp sets in the 2015-2016 Stampin' Up! Catalog? There are 5 stamp sets that have the word, "watercolor" in their names, and there are others that have watercolor as a theme such as Garden in Bloom, Work of Art, and Sheltering Tree, to name just three of many. I love this theme and I'm sure I'll be using these stamp sets a lot as the year goes on. One of the sets comes with a kit that will be available later this summer. I can hardly wait to be able to buy that when it becomes available, too!

     For now, this is the first time I've used one of the new Watercolor stamp sets, Watercolor Words. Oh, and there are not just words in this set – there are images, too!


     Besides the stamp sets, there is also a set of Designer Series Papers (DSP) with watercolor images as its theme – English Garden DSP. What a great combination this paper set and Watercolor Words is! Ooh, and I love the Hello Honey and Old Olive color combination featured in this particular sheet from the DSP set! So I chose those two colors for my stamping.  Important note: Remember that most Designer Series Papers in this Stampin' Up! catalog also have a coordinating Cardstock Pack! You don't have to go out and buy whole packages of cardstock just to use a few sheets of DSP! The pack for this paper set includes, Hello Honey, Old Olive and Soft Suede!

     To allow the outline of the flower and leaf stamps to show, I stamped those images fully inked.  Then I used a blender pen to pick up colors from the stamp pads and fill in with a lighter color. I wanted to mimic the Soft Suede center of the flower. The Blender pen made it too light and the actual Stampin' Write Marker made it too dark. For that "just right" color, I used a dry watercolor brush to pick up the color from the stamp pad and add it to the flower.

     In trying to find some texture for this card, I looked at several embossing folders before I had that "aha" moment when I came across the Honeycomb Embossing Folder. Hmmm.  Garden, Honey, Flowers. What's not more perfect than a honeycomb?!

     For just a bit of embellishment, I added three Soft Suede Candy Dots to the stamped layer.  I just love all three colors together in this card!

Now here are the products featured in this project. Link to my personal Stampin' Up! Store to order any of these!

Watercolor Words Photopolymer Stamp Set (138702)
English Garden Designer Series Paper (138440)
Honeycomb Textured Impressions Embossing Folder (129378)

Cardstock: Hello Honey and Old Olive Cardstock from the English Garden Cardstock Pack (138999); Whisper White Cardstock (100730)
Ink: Old Olive Classic Stampin' Pad (126953); Hello Honey Classic Stampin' Pad (133643); Soft Suede Classic Stampin' Pad (126978)
Blender Pens (102845)
Soft Suede Candy Dots in the Neutrals Collection (130934)

Posted on : Jul 14 2015
Posted under Sizzix, Stamping |

New Stamps 9: Garden in Bloom

Aloha, all!

     For today's project, I'm reprising a project that is my go-to card when I need to send a quick card that has a little bit of a gift in it – the Diagonal Double Pocket Card. I always like to have one of these in my collection with current projects, so why not start early this year with a brand new stamp set – Garden in Bloom.


     All of the images on this card, which includes two bookmarks as the "gift" about which I spoke, are from the Garden in Bloom Stamp set. I chose the colors based on the colors that are in the sheet that I used from the English Garden Designer Series Paper set.  This piece of paper has a delicate design of flowerettes and leaflets on one side and a not-so-delicate large strip on the other. When I fold a piece of paper like this, I fold in such a way that the design that I like most – in this case, the delicate design, is featured more in the card. The strip is only visible as one of the diagonal folds in the middle of the card. There's another little trick to this card that I shared in my last Newsletter. I'll include a link to my tutorial notes in my next newsletter, too, if you'd like to sign up!  Just complete the form in the upper left of this blog page.

     So back to the colors – they are Melon Mambo and Mint Macaron. I find that a delightful change from all my Watermelon Wonder/Cucumber Crush cards that filled much of my June blog posts!

     The stamp set is one of the "watercolor" themed sets that are found throughout the 2015-2016 Stampin' Up! Catalog. This set not only has the outline of the flowers and butterflies, it also has separate stamps to use to fill in the color.  To make thes work using the same color for both the outline and the fill of a stamp, I stamp the outline using full strength ink from the stamp pad, and then I stamp the fill off on a piece of scrap paper before adding it to the center of the stamped outline.  This stamp set is Photopolymer, so that process is oh so easy!

     I left most of the Whisper White Cardstock layer on the bookmarks empty so that I can write a note on each to the person who will receive the card. I was tempted to stamp the same sentiment on the bookmarks as is on the front of the card – it's such a nice friendship greeting! But I would have had to stamp it sideways, and that didn't appeal to me.  So I'll hand write a note.

     The ribbon at the top of each bookmark is the Whisper White 3/8" Stitched Satin Ribbon. I'm so glad to have this ribbon in Whisper White.  But it is just a bit too wide to make a nice knot in the top of this bookmark, punched with the Scalloped Tag Topper Punch. So I just slipped the ribbon through and used the teeny staples from the Handheld Stapler to lock the ribbon in place. It's kind of a fun look, I think! 

Here are the products featured in this project. Link to my personal Stampin' Up! Store to order any of these!

Garden in Bloom Photopolymer Stamp Set (139433)
English Garden Designer Series Paper (138440)

Cardstock: Mint Macaron (138337); Melon Mambo (115320); Whisper White (100730)
Ink: Melon Mambo Classic Stampin' Pad (126948); Mint Macaron Classic Stampin' Pad (138326)
Handheld Stapler (139083)
Whisper White 3/8" Stitched Satin Ribbon (138429)
Scalloped Tag Topper Punch (133324)



Posted on : Jul 10 2015
Posted under Gifts, Punches, Stampin' Up! Tools, Stamping |

New Stamps 8: Pointing to Layered Letters!

Aloha, all!

     Today's project is one I made for the SUO Challenges biweekly challenge which, this week, was to feature Stampin' Up! Designer Series Papers (DSP) in a starring role. As I looked around at my dwindling supply of new stamp sets to use, and scanned through the Stampin' Up! catalog for ideas for using DSP, I put two ideas together and came up with today's project!


     The paper is from the Cherry on Top DSP Set. Every time I've thumbed through this DSP stack, I've stopped to look at this design to try to imagine how I might use it without hiding the pattern. Then I noticed how the Stampin' Up! artists used the Layered Letters Alphabet Set in the catalog sample. In one sample, it almost looked as if there was an element pointing to the greeting made by the letters. Hah! That's how I could use the paper! There is it with the lines all pointing to the greeting – just makes it almost pop off the paper! Oh, and the DSP that I used as a base mat for this is the other side of the same DSP that I feature on the front. It's such a versatile set of papers!

     There is one stamp in the stamp set that is the rectangle background for each of the letters. It's so easy to line them all up because the stamp set is a Photopolymer set, and I can see right through the stamp to the paper.  No Stamp-a-ma-jig with these stamps! It's the same with the letters.  I stamped the background using Crushed Curry Ink, which is one of the colors in the DSP stack. Then I added the letters stamped with Watermelon Wonder Ink.  What a great idea Stampin' Up! has in its catalog!

     The "birthday" stamp is from the Endless Birthday Wishes Stamp Set – so many great words in that set! I also stamped that using Watermelon Wonder ink, and then hand-timmed the stamped image before adding a Rhinestone Accent to finish the card off.

     If you have some DSP you'd like to show off in a card, current or retired – but definitely Stampin' Up! – be sure to enter it in the SUO Challenge! The challenge starts today and goes on for two weeks!

Now here are the products featured in this project. Link to my personal Stampin' Up! Store to order any of these!

Layered Letters Alphabet Photopolymer Stamp Set (138692)
Cherry on Top Designer Series Paper Stack (138443)

Cardstock: Watermelon Wonder Cardstock (138334); Whisper White Cardstock (100730); Whisper White THICK Cardstock (for the card base) (140272)
Ink: Crushed Curry Classic Stampin' Pad (131173); Watermelon Wonder Classic Stampin' Pad (138323)
Rhinestone Basic Jewels (119246)

Posted on : Jul 06 2015
Posted under Challenges, Stamping, SUO Challenges |

Fun for a Summer Holiday Weekend!

Aloha, all!

     I'm taking a break from my counting off on the use of my new Stamp Sets because I just was not able to figure out a Fouth of July Card using my new stamp sets.  So I'm featuring a stamp set that, though it's not new, is one I've rarely used. It's so cute, how can I have missed using it?


     It would have been so much easier using the Sea Street Stamp Set last year when there was a set of Designer Series Papers that went beautifully with it. But, no. I let it sit all by its lonesome among the unused stamp sets. Sn

     But not to worry – here's the little Octopus out showing off on this summer weekend in the USA that begins with 4th of July Celebration!

     I got the idea for this card from several that fellow Stampin' Up! demonstrator, Mary Brown, made last summer (she doesn't let her stamp sets sit around!). I even scrounged around a bit in my retired product boxes to see if I'd left any of last year's Designer Series Paper lying around.  But no.  So I used stamps from the stamp set and three colors to make my own background. The colors are Pacific Point, Tempting Turquoise, and Real Red. I fussy cut the little critter out and added a banner using Celebrate from the Any Many More Stamp Set.

     This was a quick and fun card to make – and so simple.  Mary Brown does "clean and simple" cards so well, and I'm so glad to have her as someone to emulate!

Here are the products featured in this project. Link to my personal Stampin' Up! Store to order any of these!

Sea Street Stamp Set (wood mount – 133985; clear mount – 133988)
Any Many More Stamp Set (wood mount – 134273; clear mount – 134276)
Cardstock: Whisper White (100730); Tempting Turquoise (102067)
Ink:Real Red Classic Stampin' Pad (126949); Tempting Turquoise Classic Stampin' Pad (126952); Pacific Point Classic Stampin' Pad (126951)
Rhinestone Basic Jewels (119246)


Posted on : Jul 03 2015
Posted under Stamping |

New Stamps 7: Endless Thanks

Aloha, all!

     When it comes to featuring a stamp set that is all words, there needs to be something else in the card to make it a bit more interesting. I've had the idea for the layout of this card since back when the SUO Challenge group had its Stars and Stripes challenge. I just wasn't sure that this met the bill too well, so I used something else for the challenge. Now I'm thinking differently!


     Does this paper not have stars on it? And does this little bit of weaving not make stripes? So it's "Stars and Stripes," right? Thought so!

     It took a bit of measuring to end up with the stripes somewhat symmetrical with a card that remained a standard A2 size. Once I thought of making the sentiment the central strip in the overall design, with it wider than the stripes just before and after and those wider that the top and bottom stripes, it all seemed to have the right balance for me.

     Now where did I find this fun paper with the stars?  In the Sweet Li'l Things Designer Series Paper. I'm sure I'm not the only one who doesn't have much to make or demonstrate in the way of baby projects. My nephew in Maryland has a baby, but that's as close as I am to any baby. There are none in the rest of my family or among my customers or their families.  BUT I learned a few years ago that the "other" sides of Designer Series Papers with baby patterns are usually wonderful to use for any kind of project. And thus it is with this year's set of "baby" papers!

     The color in this set of papers is Hello Honey. As it's in one of the In Color groups, I chose another in that group – Mossy Meadow – as the accent color. I think it works nicely!

     The stamped sentiment is made up of three different stamps – the banner, "thanks," and "so much." It's amazing how well I can squeeze images together with the Photopolymer stamp sets, of which this is one. I knew what width I wanted that layer to be and I made those words work!

     To finish off the project, I used a piece of the new Thick Baker's Twine in Very Vanilla. That worked well as the base color in this paper set is Very Vanilla,

     It was a fun project and I'll share the measurements for it in my next newsletter. If you're interested in my newsletter, just sign up in the upper left corner of this page! My next newsletter will be towards the end of July after a fun visit from my teenage grandson earlier in the month.

Here are the products featured in this project. Link to my personal Stampin' Up! Store to order any of these!

Endless Thanks Photopolymer Stamp Set (138796)
Sweet Li'l Things Designer Series Paper (138447)
Very Vanilla Thick Baker's Twine (138411
Cardstock: Very Vanilla (101650); Mossy Meadow (133676)
Ink: Mossy Meadow Classic Stampin' Pad (133645)



Posted on : Jun 30 2015
Posted under Stamping |