Autumn Colors!

Aloha, all!

     I cannot begin to tell you how busy I've been the past week or so – and it's going to continue into this coming week. After that I do believe that life should slow down a bit. I had a summer-long commitment with one volunteer organization and an early fall commitment with one another, and wouldn't you know they overlapped during the first two weeks of September. Yikes, I'm really going to try not to let that happen again!

     But that never stops me from participating in the biweekly Stampin' Up! Only Challenge Design Team, and the new challenge starts today!

     I actually made this project for a greeting card swap that I joined at the beginning of August. These products weren't available for you to order – and have fun with! – back then. But they're definitely available now! And now, of course, is the time to start making Halloween Cards if you send a few of those out to your friends and family. I love to send them, because they are so unexpected, but so much fun to make!

     The stamp set that I used for this project is Merry Cafe. The images I used are the stamped words on the coffee cup as well as the little spider web up in the corner. They are just SOOO cute – and there are others in the stamp set, too! For the cup, which I made with the Coffee Cup Framelits set, I used a design from the Spooky Night Designer Series Paper set. I also found those fun witch hats in that paper set, and cut them out by hand before adhering them to the card with some Stampin' Dimensionals. The final fun accents on the central set of images are those fun Black Rhinestone Jewels. Those really added to the fun of making this card!

     The background was fun, too. Now we really get into my favorite Autumn Colors and the SUO Challenge. Pumpkin Pie and Cajun Craze are my go-to and definitely favorite Autumn Colors in the Stampin' Up! Collection. To make the top background layer, I got out my Brick Wall Textured Impressions Embossing Folder and inked up the raised side of the folder with a Stamping Sponge and some Pumpkin Pie Ink. Then I ran a piece of Very Vanilla Cardstock through the Sizzix Big Shot with the embossing folder and what a fun, almost spooky, look resulted! Note that this was the very first card I made for this multi-card swap. Once I saw it finished, I made one change, and that was to sponge not only the Pumpkin Pie layer, but also the brick wall textured layer. Boy, did that made a good difference!

     Finally, I layered everything up, first on a layer of Cajun Craze Cardstock and then a layer of Pumpkin Pie Cardstock, before adding it all to a card base made up of Thick Very Vanilla Cardstock.

     SOOO much fun! Here are the main products I used in this card. I do hope you'll think about buying one or two of them to help you with your own Halloween Cards! Just click on any of the icons below and you'll be whisked away to my very own Stampin' Up! store where you can purchase any of them!

 


Posted on : Sep 11 2017
Posted under Challenges, Sizzix, Stampin' Up! Tools, Stamping, SUO Challenges |

Happy Birthday, Becky!

Aloha, all – and especially Becky!

     My friend, Becky, is having a special birthday today. Yesterday I attended a girls' afternoon out Birthday Party for Becky. Of course, as I know she loves paper crafting, I had to make note cards for her.

     As I'm sure those of you who know what's what in the Stampin' Up! Catalog will know that there are some old and non-Stampin' Up! features of this project. But this set of note cards is what I wanted to make, so off I went with the products I had on hand!

     I love this set of current Stampin' Up! papers with all these lovely pastel colors. The Sweet Sugarplum, Calypso Coral, Old Olive and Pool Party colored prints are from the Petal Party Designer Series Paper Stack. The sheets are 6" x 6" and there are 4 of each sheet. There are 8 other double-sided designs in this stack. I've seen a lot of the "other" side of these papers in projects online, but I really like the single color prints!

     Here's a close up of one of the cards so that you can see not only the print, but also how I used a brand-new Textured Impressions Embossing Folder to enhance the look of the note cards.

     This is the Sweel Sugarplum Print, and is the same print that I used in the other cards. What I'd like you to see in this close-up photo is the new Quilt Top Textured Impressions Embossing Folder design. It really does look like quilted stitching and really makes these cards look so much more detailed than they really are!

     The initial in the center of the Whisper White Cardstock circles is the retired Stampin' Up! Thinlit set, Little Letters. This is one set that I have not been able to get rid of because it's so useful for cards and other projects that require letters. I cut the letter out of the same designer series paper as in the background for each of the cards in this set. For the circle, I cut one circle from the Stitched Shapes Framelits set and one from the Layering Circles Framelits set and adhered them together for a little bit more texture.

     The non-Stampin' Up! product is the Whisper White frame around the inside of the Designer Series Paper layer. I've had a set of these for a couple of years and enjoy using them for cards such as these. I'm still crossing my fingers that Stampin' Up! will come up with some rectangular stitched frames for use to show off to you and my customers! Meanwhile, I'll use what's available otherwise.

     Anyway, Happy Birthday again, Becky! I hope your next 10 years are as wonderful as the last 10 years that's I've known you!

     Here are the current Stampin' Up! products that I used in this project – and they're available for you to purchase by clicking on any of the pictures to go to my personal Stampin' Up! store!

 


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Posted on : Sep 03 2017
Posted under Sizzix, Stamping |

The Stampin’ Up! Holiday Catalog is Here!

Aloha, all!

     This is almost my favorite time of the Stampin' Up! year – when the Holiday Catalog goes lives and I get to start planning for cards and gifts for the Fall and Winter Holidays! If I bought whatever I personally wanted from this catalog, my wallet would be in serious trouble. But, as I haven't the space for all that wonderful stuff and since I don't have that much time to be blogging and sharing what I do, I've managed to keep myself in check!

     For today, this is my favorite product suite in the 2017 Holiday Catalog. It's also the FIRST product suite in the book, and I've already got my hot little hands on all of it! But I don't know where to start.

     OK, I'll start with the Christmas Quilt Bundle. The bundle consists of the Christmas Quilt Stamp Set and the Quilt Builder Framelits Dies. For this project, I used only the dies to create that fun quilt block. The best part of this project is that you can use any quilting color combo you'd like, so this does NOT have to be a Christmas project! And it's so easy to cut and reassemble all those little pieces when you first adhere the cardstock or paper you're going to use to a piece of Multipurpose Adhesive Sheets. I'm glad I have a good sized stash of those sheets as I'm going to be making a lot of my personal Christmas Cards with this suite of products!

     There are two other features of this suite that I just have to point out. First is the "stitching" on the quilt square. That's made with a die from the Framelits set that just makes those stitching lines and doesn't cut through anything. Fabulous feature! The second is the stitched quilting on the background layer made which is a piece of Quilted Christmas 6" x 6" Designer Series Paper. The quilting stitches are made with new Quilt Top Textured Impressions Embossing Folder. Is that fun or what?!

     Finally, the ribbon – it's the brand new Quilted Christmas 1/4" Ribbon. Attached to it is a simple "Merry Christmas" greeting from the oldie-but-goodie Teeny Tiny Wishes Stamp Set.

     Here's a Stampin' Up! Video about this fun new product suite. I hope you enjoy learning more about this and will be as quick to order some of the new products as I've been!

     Click on any of these pictures to go to my own personal Stampin' Up! store to learn even more about the products!


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Posted on : Sep 01 2017
Posted under Announcement, Sizzix, Stamping |

Stampin’ Up! Only Challenges – A Blast From the Past!

Aloha, all!

     As the current challenge at the SUO Challenge Blog is a celebration of its 7th Anniversary, we've chosen the theme, "A Blast From The Past," to celebrate! What I did for my Design Team Entry in this challenge is to recreate the very first project that I made as a member of the Design Team back in 2011.

     And here's the project that I made for that first challenge:

     I definitely remember when I created this card – and a couple of similar cards – back in 2011. At that time we had in our Stampin' Up! Catalog some of the old original Sizzix Circle Dies. These are thick dies that could cut through lots of layers of paper, cardstock, fabric and other materials. I loved them! I used the 3-1/2" and 3" circle dies for the larger circel. Then I had a 2-1/2" Circle Punch that I used for the mat in the smaller group. And finally I had to use the Circle Scissors Punch to make the stamped circle. My goodness – all those products!

     But in today's project, all I had to do was get out my Layering Circles Framelits to make ALL the circles! After that, the process for making the card was probably about the same as I made the 2011 card. I texturized the top background layer, this time with the Layered Leaves 3D Dynamic Textured Impressions Embossing Folder. I stamped a sentiment, this time with the Thank You from the Rose Wonder Stamp Set, and added some Pear Pizzazz Enamel Shapes, though not as many as the Rhinestones in the 2011 card. But that was a wedding card, and today's card is a simple Thank You card.

     The color that I chose to accent this card was Peekaboo Peach, which is one of the colors in the Naturally Eclectic Designer Series Paper sheet that I used for the front layer in the larger circle set. Peekaboo Peach is one that you'll see me use a lot this fall, including the Peekaboo Peach 5/8" Crinkled Seam Binding Ribbon, which is so much fun to tie into a bow!

     It really was fun going back to see what I was doing 6 years ago, and I'm sure that the other members of the SUO Challenges Design Team had fun with their projects. Be sure to visit the SUO Challenge Blog and see what they made with this theme – and maybe you'll be inspired to create your own "Blast from the Past" project and enter it in the challenge. There's blog candy this time at the Challenge Blog!

     Here are the products that I used in the project with the current products. Of course the Whisper White Cardstock is not only still around, it's still got the same product number that it's had for years and years!

 


Posted on : Aug 28 2017
Posted under Announcement, Challenges, Punches, Sizzix, Stamping, SUO Challenges |

Happy 17th Birthday, Quin!

Aloha, all!

     This morning on Facebook I shared a copy of the card I sent to our grandson, Quin, on the occasion of his becoming a teenager 4 years ago. Today is Quin's 17th Birthday, and he's about to enter his senior year in High School. What a difference 4 years makes! When he was 13, I wanted him to have a cute card. Today, I couldn't imagine sending a cute card to this young man. But he certainly deserved a card made just for him with lots of love from Grandma Robin.

     I looked around for just the right stamp set to convey a Birthday Greeting, and one that was my own design from my heart. So of course, there are hearts on it! And Quin is a star in our world, so there are stars on this card also! The cupcake frosting is not from any birthday-themed stamp set, but from the Coffee Café Stamp Set. The base of the cupcake is one of the dies in the Coffee Cup Framelits set. That little candle, though, is definitely from a Birthday-themed set, Birthday Banners Stamp Set. That set is also where I found the Banner and Happy Birthday stamps. There's yet one more stamp set featured on this card, and it's a sister set to the Coffee Café set, the Merry Café Stamp Set that will be in the Stampin' Up! 2017 Holiday Catalog, to be released at the end of this week. From that set I got all the sprinkles on the cupcake frosting.

     There are a few other framelits that I've used for this card, including the Stitched Shapes Framelits and Layering Ovals Framelits Sets for the central image. The stitched rectangle that I used for the top layer of the card is not a Stampin' Up! product. It's one of my favorite die sets, though, and I can only hope that Stampin' Up! can come up with something like this for its catalog before too long!

     A very Happy Birthday to you, Quin! And have a great Senior Year in High School!   

 


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Posted on : Aug 27 2017
Posted under Announcement, Sizzix, Stamping |

CASEing for a Class!

Aloha, all!

     I am fortunate to have a new person who is attending my regular card-making classes, and thoroughly enjoying them! She's not new to Stampin' Up! products, but her interest before this year has been primarily scrapbooking. While I certainly am no slouch when it comes to scrapping, I spend most of my personal time in making cards. So that's where my classes gravitate most of the time. The reason that I bring this up is that she is not really sure of herselt when it comes to figuring out how to plan a project so that she can make the best use of her materials. So we decided to have a one-on-one class to cover planning a project from start to finish. Rather than going through the whole creative process, though, I suggested we look through the Stampin' Up! Catalog – with all its great ideas! – and pick something to CASE (Copy And Share with Everyone).

     One of the ideas, of course, was to show that, just because you don't have the products used to make the card doesn't mean you can't CASE the card. I actually think it's a lot more fun to try out a design using different products even if I DO have the products in the original.

     For this project, I did not have the stamp set in the original of this project, which is on page 175 of the Stampin' Up! 2017-2018 Annual Catalog. But I did have most of the other products. This was also a great project for demonstrating how to cut paper to make the best use of what we had. We figured out that the top layer of the card in the catalog was Vellum Cardstock. But rather than cut into a piece of that, we chose to cut the card base and the other two layers from the same piece of Pool Party Cardstock. This way, we could use one whole sheet of cardstock without wasting too very much of it, and she'd learn some basic layering measurements to boot. We adhered the top two layers together and ran both of them together through the Pinewood Planks Dynamic Textured Impressions Embossing Folder. Then we adhered this grouping to the card base and set it aside.

     For the stamped layer on the front, we used the Oh So Eclectic Stamp Set. The outline of the flowers and the sentiment were stamped with Cajun Craze Ink, the flower backgrounds were stamped with Pumpkin Pie Ink, and the stems were stamped using Crumb Cake Ink.

     Once everything was stamped, we die cut the stamped area using the Lots of Labels Framelits set, and layered it up with a piece of a Delicate Doily and some 5/8" Burlap Ribbon. We used Stampin' Dimensionals on the side away from the doily and ribbon, and Fast Fuse Adhesive on the side already bolstered up by the doily/ribbon. The final touch was a small scrap of Pumpkin Pie Cardstock and a bow of Linen Thread.

     We did spend a lot more time on this project that it might seem we should have. But at each step, we discussed how we wanted to CASE that particular step. It was fun, my friend said she had a much better idea of how to structure a card, and we both have a cute "Just For You" card to send to a friend!

     Here are the products we used for our CASEd project. Don't forget that you can purchase any or all of the products for this project from my personal Stampin' Up! store! Just click on any of the pictures below and you'll be sent there right away! Thanks for all of your purchases that help me keep my Craft Room going!

 

 


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Posted on : Aug 23 2017
Posted under CASEing Projects, Sizzix, Stamping |

A Fun Double Espresso!

Aloha, all!

     I had so much fun with this project, and it's certainly much larger than most cards that I make!

     This pattern is called a Double Center Step Card, and it's 8-1/4" wide by the standard 5-1/2" high. Of course you can see why I chose the title for this blog post – this card is a double in every way! Just look at all those Coffee Images, taken both from the Coffee Cafe Stamp Set and the Coffee Break Designer Series Paper. The final "coffee" related Stampin' Up! product I used for this project was the Coffee Cups Framelits Set

     I love the colors in the set of Designer Series Paper – Garden Green goes oh so well with the Early Espresso and Soft Suede colors of the coffees, pots and cups in this set. I even love the touch of Pool Party blue, that I've accented with the Pool Party Shimmer Ribbon bow that finishes the project off.

     One thing that I noticed when I first used the Coffee Cups Framelits Set was that there was no stamp in the Coffee Cafe Stamp Set that went with the little coffee cup framelit. I quickly learned that there are some perfect little coffee cups in the sheet from the Designer Series Paper set that features coffee pots and cups. You can see one of them in the step image at the left of the card – that's one that I die cut with the framelit and placed on the right background of the card. There's another one (peeking in from the left side of the card) that I cut and put on the left background layer.  Sneak Peek:  There will be a stamped image in a Stamp Set in the upcoming Stampin' Up! 2017 Holiday Catalog! 

     Thanks for taking the time to read about this project! If you're interested in a tutorial for making this style of card, there will be one in my next Newsletter, which will be published at the end of this month, right when the new Stampin' Up! Holiday Catalog is released. Hint: I may just use that new Stamp Set from the new catalog for the tutorial! If you're not on my newsletter mailing list, you can fix that right now by clicking in the box at the upper left of this page!

     Here are the products that I featured in this project. Don't forget that, by clicking on any of the images below, you'll be whisked away to my very own Stampin' Up! store, where you can read more about the products and purchase them directly from me! That would really make my day!

 


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Posted on : Aug 20 2017
Posted under Sizzix, Stamping |

Orchid in a Jar

Aloha, all!

     I'm still in the north woods of Minnesota, and I'm definitely missing our tropical garden in Hawaii. What I miss most of all are the orchids growing all over our garden. They don't bloom all the time. But when we left, there were several to enjoy.

     Stampin' Up!, though, has made it easy for me to enjoy an orchid any time with its new Climbing Orchid Stamp Set

     Besides a spray of orchids, this card includes a not-so-fancy "vase" in the medium sized jar from the Jar of Love Stamp Set that's been around for a while. I also used a stamp from another new set, Colorful Seasons, to make the long stem so that the orchid spray could reach the water. The other stems are all from the Climbing Orchid set.

     For these orchids, I stamped the small orchid pieces on Flirty Flamingo cardstock, using Berry Burst ink. Then I matted the whole card front onto a layer of the same Flamingo Cardstock. The Hello greeting is from the Orchid stamp set. This is a fun card to make, and you'll be hearing more about it when I return from vacation!

     Another short post, but I'm starting to get the hang of posting on my mini iPad. On the other hand, our grandchildren have now arrived at the lake, so I may be short of time for such things as this for the next few days. It all depends on whether they want to hang with us old folks!

  

 


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Posted on : Jul 20 2017
Posted under Sizzix, Stamping |

Fun With a Coloring Technique!

Aloha, all!

     Most of you know by now that my favorite way to "attack" a card design is to construct a layout with layers of different sizes, colors and textures. I just love to stand at my work table and figure these things out as I go along until I find something that is pleasing to my eye. Today, however, I decided to try out a technique that a fellow Stampin' Up! demonstrator – Cindee Wilkinson – has been showing off on Facebook.

     The main layer of this card is made with a technique that I'm calling Reinker Blending.  To make this layer, I used three Stampin' Up! products: Glossy White Cardstock (yes, it's back in the catalog!); Reinkers; and Stampin' Spritzers. The technique involves applying drops of two or more Reinkers on a piece of Glossy Paper and then spritzing them with plain water (or add a bit of 70% alcohol if you wish), allowing the colors to blend together. Cindee used bolder colors and heavier spritzing in her projects, and that works beautifully, too. But I really wanted a softer feel to my card so I spritzed from a bit of a distance (10" – 12") and tilted my card back and forth and around a bit to get the look that I wanted.

     Now for the particulars of this card! My colors are Sweet Sugarplum and Berry Burst. I used an equal number of dots of each Reinker, about 6 drops of each. I used plain water and, as I said, spritzed it on the card front about 10" – 12" away. As the colors started to blend a bit, I spritzed a bit closer to the centers of the dots to make the color spread out a bit from them.

     I had been thinking about using another technique that I came across on the Internet last week called the Camouflage Die-Cutting Technique. This involves die-cutting a shape out of the colored paper and then replacing it over the negative space from which the die-cut image came using Stampin' Dimensionals. But I have also been thinking about using the Reinker Blending technique in a class I'm having next week in which the Climbing Orchid Stamp Set from Stampin' Up! will be featured (a class request). So, before I applied the Reinkers and spritzed the water, I stamped one of the images from the stamp set onto the glossy paper, using Jet Black Stazon Ink (not a Stampin' Up! product; but you can find it at most crafting stores). Once the paper was dry, I die-cut the orchid. My next step was to adhere the inked paper onto its mat of Sweet Sugarplum Cardstock, and then to adhere the die-cut orchid back into its spot using Stampin' Dimensionals. It's the same basic technique as the Camouflage Die-Cutting Technique, but, with the orchid image stamped, it's not really camouflaged.

     About the water and drying time. First of all, I applied water fairly sparingly which is what happens when you spritz from more of a distance than up close. The piece of paper dried beautifully in less than half an hour.  As with Cindee's project, water pooled at the edges of the Glossy Cardstock. But I had cut my paper larger than the size I was going to use in the actual card. So, rather than wicking pooled color up, I just let it dry on the edges, all of which I cut away to make the size I had intended to use.

     When I stamped the sentiment on the card as I was about to finish it (with Jet Black Stazon Ink again), I realized I could have stamped the orchid AFTER I'd colored and dried the paper. Either way, it seems to work just fine.

     And here I go again tying my project up with some of the great new ribbon in the Stampin' Up! catalog, this time the Berry Burst 1/2" Finely Woven Ribbon. Boy, that makes a nice bow!

     Here are the Stampin' Up! products I used for this project, and they are all well worth having in your stash of stamping supplies! It's easy to get them, too. Just click on a picture below and order any of them from my Stampin' Up! store.

 


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Posted on : Jul 06 2017
Posted under Sizzix, Stampin' Up! Tools, Stamping |

Color Fusers Blog Hop – July 2017!

Aloha, all!

     It's time for the monthly Color Fusers Blog Hop, and my brain hasn't yet wrapped itself around the combination of colors and the stamp set I chose to use. But it's here, and I do think it's growing on me!

     First the colors for the month:

 

     Now my card – then an explanation about what was going on in my head when I designed it!

 

     The day before I designed this card, I had been looking around the Internet for some ideas about how to use the new Stampin' Up! Stamp Set, So Many Shells..The only samples that I could find that used several of the shell stamps in one card had the same basic layout, including a sample card in the Stampin' Up! Catalog. But I wanted to plan a class using this set, and I just couldn't figure out what my designs were going to be in the time I'd allotted myself to come up with the class plan. So I put the So Many Shells Stamp Set away, and focused on another set that seemed more versatile.

     Then along came a reminder that it was time for this blog hop. At that point, I realized that So Many Shells was still firmly fixed in my brain as a set I wanted to work with. But with these colors? Oh, why not!

     So here you have three of the four shells in this set, cut out and accenting an oval shape – made with the Layering Oval Framelits – in which the sentiment appears. That's pretty much the one design I'd seen. But instead of using the natural colors that designers were using in their cards, I just sent with the challenge colors. One thing I played around with was using a neutral color – Smoky Slate in this case – to accent the shells. While the challenge for this hop is to limit ourselves to the prescribed colors, we are still allowed to use neutrals as accents. But, after I'd stamped the conch-style shell using Soft Sky and Smoky Slate, I wondered if having both stamps for this image was really necessary for the kind of card I was making. If you look at the Soft Sky scallop shell over to the right, you'll see a shell with just the one main image, and no second color. I'm not sure which I like better, but you have a chance to see both in this photo.

     The real kicker in this color combo with this stamp set was the Lemon Lime Twist. I originally thought I'd just make some sea grass with that color. But somehow I ended up using it as the background color for the design. I added some stamped shells, using Lemon Lime Twist ink, and, voilà, I had a background design.

     While it was a no-brainer to have Dapper Denim as a mat for the Lemon Lime Twist Layer, once I had the shells arranged, I was reminded about the dark cracked paper design in the Color Theory Designer Series Paper Stack. So out that came, and I think it's the perfect accent!

     The final touch was a bit of embellishment using the new Glitter Enamel Dots. I used two sizes of the circles and three different shades of the Dapper Denim, which is one of the colors in the set. I love that there are different shades rather than just one dark or one light shade of each of the colors.

     The more I look at this card, the more it grows on me! I may just have to try some different color combos more often! For sure I'll be doing that at least once a month with the Color Fusers group! I'll be back with another fun project on August 7th.

     Here are the blogs in this month's Color Fusers Blog Hop. Please visit them all and get some fab ideas for using this color combo!

     And when you come back here, you might check out some of the products that I used in this project. Just click on any of the pictures below to go to my Stampin' Up! shopping spot to learn more about them – and order them once you find out how much fun they can be!

 


Posted on : Jul 03 2017
Posted under Challenges, Color Fuser's Blog Hop, Sizzix, Stamping |