August 30, 2016

Baby, Baby, Baby

Hi all,

Today's post title is appropriate for many reasons. The first reason is because on Sunday, my baby turned 18! For those of you who have 'been there, done that', you know what I mean. There are those who are dreading having your babies that old and those of you, who at times, are looking forward to it. I'll admit, dealing with a teenager can be challenging. I think God makes them that way so, as a parent, you're ready to let them fly the coop!

Here's my boy. I don't often see a smile like that on him! On Sunday I take him to college. The house will be quiet without him! I sure do love the little goober!

Okay, another reason the title is appropriate is that over the weekend I was working on baby cards. A local gift shop, A Conversation Piece in West Bend, WI, sells my cards and placed an order for birthday, wedding and baby cards. I hadn't made any baby cards in awhile, so I dug through my stamp and paper stash and took to Pinterest for some inspiration. These are some of the cards I'll be taking to the owner for review.

This Sweet Sugar Plum Carriage is a quick and easy card to put together. Stamp and crop the image. Use dimensionals to pop it up on a piece of 3.1/4" x 3 1/4" whisper White cs that has been scored at 1/8" and 1/4" on all sides. That piece is mounted onto a piece of 4 x 5 1/4" Whisper White cs. I added a cheater bow using the new rusched Sweet Sugar Plum ribbon and mounted it to the 8 1/2" x 5 1/2" Sweet Sugar Plum base. I added a few pearls for a little touch of bling.

If you've not heard of a cheater bow, simply add a strip of ribbon across your card, adhering it to the back of the cs. Take a separate piece of ribbon and tie a knot around the strip you just adhered. Cheater, cheater! It also uses less ribbon than if you wrapped the ribbon around the cs and tied a knot.

For the remaining cards, I pulled out vintage stamps and paper. This is a good way for me to use these products. There are many business demonstrators who only have current products in their studios; I'm not to that point. There are some products that are easier for me to let go of than others. If you live in my area and host a class in your home or mine, you can choose a stamp set of your choice from the 'prize closet'. When I do let stamps go, I like them to go to a good home! I hate to admit this, but I have many sets that for whatever reason, were never inked. Too many stamps, too little time!!

Challenge yourself to find a card you like, but then make a few changes to make it your own. Oh baby, I know you can do it!

Hope your day is a good one,

August 25, 2016

Thinking of You....Flamingo Style!

Hi all,

I do love this Pop of Paradise leggy creature! 

I'm especially looking forward to a mix of cards using this stamp set to send off throughout the long Wisconsin winter. Wouldn't you love to receive this bit of sunshine in the mail?

I work at sending my hand stamped cards to a variety of people, just because. Over the summer I've been writing to a dear friend of mine quite regularly. I don't know how we got to be such good friends; her middle son dated my older sister, so Ruthann was old enough to be my mom. We both went through our cross stitch years and then both turned to stamping. I would stop and visit her on the five hour trek to/from my bestie's home. I was surprised and saddened to receive a letter from her son this week informing me that Ruthann had passed. She was such a wonderful, talented, loving woman and she will be missed by many. I am hoping that my cards brought a bit of joy to her days.

Over the weekend I plan to have some major play time with my holiday catalog purchases - stay tuned! Don't miss out - provide me with your email address in the column to the right and my posts will be delivered right to your in box.

Make someone's day - send a hand stamped card!

August 23, 2016

A Flirty Flamingo Hello!

Hi all,

A quick post today as summer is winding down and I'm working to get my kiddo set for his freshman year at college. I know the house will be empty without him, but it's time he heads out in to the world to figure out how life works. My bedroom is beginning to look like a retail store; I'm housing the college stuff in there for the next 2 weeks.

As other demonstrators are sneak peaking holiday items from the new catalog, I'm just not ready to give up on summer. This fun flamingo from Pop of Paradise just makes me smile and I think it would do the same for the recipient.

I broke out my Gorgeous Grunge stamp set to create my own DSP. I also sponged the raised embossing with Flirty Flamingo to give the background a bit more depth. The sentiment was stamped with Cucumber Crush ink, covered with clear embossing powder and heat embossed. I used the layering circle framelits to create the flamingo backdrop and the banner punch for the banner.

The Flirty Flamingo bow was accented with a bit of Cumcumber Crush Baker's Twine for a fun little finish.

Hope you enjoy this happy hello!

August 18, 2016

Great Way to Feature and Use Your DSP!


This week I'm sharing the latest birthday cards I'm sending to employees of the company I work for.

Are you one of those folks who has a hard time cutting in to your DSP? I actually know people who won't buy DSP because they think it's a waste of paper to only be able to see one side. Some papers are tougher to dissect than others.

Today's project is a perfect way to spotlight BOTH sides of your DSP in a creative fold called the curtain fold.

I mentioned in my Tuesday post that my monthly employee birthday cards are a great way to use my vintage products. I loved this paper stack from the last catalog; it was HUGE! That's a good thing, but I also had quite a bit of paper and other accessories left at the end of the catalog year. It was so darn festive, I had to use it for employee cards. In the process of making these cards, I actually emptied a roll of Washi tape - I love it when that happens!

This fold is a perfect way to showcase the patterns on both sides of your DSP. You can get 4 cards from a 12 x 12 sheet of DSP. I followed a tutorial by Dawn Griffith and altered it a bit to make it more duplicatable - that word is a bit of a mouthful! I ran a stripe of Washi tape on the inside piece of the card to jazz it up a bit, to tie the inside to the outside and to use up the never ending roll of Washi tape! SU! certainly is generous in the quanity of tape they give us.

That reminds me of a story. A year or two ago, Cheryl Ann, one of the Pals, was on a mission to use her Washi tape. She posted projects for WEEKS using Washi tape in more ways than I ever thought possible. The Pals group has an extremely active Facebook group and although we're scattered throughout the country, many of the Pals have become good friends. Anyway, Cheryl Ann had us all on pins and needles waiting for her next project. The accompanying posts were just hysterical. You had to be there, but Cheryl Ann was a woman on a Washi tape mission!! She certainly brightened my days with her humor and creativity

Ana-hoo, give this fold a try. It's easy, it's fun and it looks much more complicated than it is. You'll end up with a project that is total eye candy!

If you'd like to join our amazing group of Pals, get in touch with me. I'd love to answer your questions and have you on my team. I'll be honest, 97% of SU! demos are hobby demonstrators, joining for the discount, staying for the friendships and the fun. Click here for more information or give me a shout.

Hope your day is a good one!

August 16, 2016

Hinged Box Tutorial

Hi all!

Many thanks to those of you who left comments on my blog post last week that featured a hinged box. If you missed it, check it out here. I heard your request for a tutorial loud and clear!

When I first saw this box, I was attracted to its unique presentation. I attempted a few of these boxes following a couple different tutorials, but didn't like the end product so started playing around to make modifications and this is what I came up with.

This box really goes together quite easily. The pattern can be adapted to fit any size cards. You first want to measure your envelope, then add 1/4" to allow some wiggle room in the box. Your next measurement will depend on how many cards you want to add to the box. My box fits 4 A2 cards with envelopes and is 1" high.
                 My envelope measures 4 1/2" x 5 3/4"
                        4 1/2" + 1/4" + 2" (1" for each side of the box) = 6 3/4"
                        5 3/4" + 1/4" + 2" = 8"
                 For the top pieces, I divided my 8" measurement by 2 and added 1/16" and also added 1/16" to my 6 3/4" measurement.

The card stock measurements for the box I made in the tutorial are:

6 3/4" x 8"
4 1/16" x 6 13/16" - you need 2 of these
4 5/8" x 1" - you need 2 of these

So, cut your card stock and follow along!

If you have any questions on the directions, give a shout. I'd also greatly appreciate your feedback on the tutorial. I'm new to videos and am looking for ways to improve.

In the video I talked about aligning the card stock to the outside of the track. If you look at the center of the box in the photo below, you'll see there's a wee bit of an overhang onto the side of the box. If you cut too close to the center, you lose that overhang and that's the look that I don't like. There is a reason for my persnicketiness - is that a word??

Thanks for stopping. Be sure to leave a comment with feedback on the tutorial. To have my posts delievered to your mailbox, enter your address in the field in the right column. You can then take a moment out of your day to be a relaxed stamper!

Wishing you a Daffodil Delightful day!

A Swirly Masculine Birthday Card

G'day all!

No, that's not a greeting native to Wisconsin; I was just in the mood!

I think I've mentioned that in my HR role, I send birthday cards to each of our employees. When I first started, I knew I couldn't send 'just a birthday card'. So I started making cards to send. I work in health care, which employs a majority of females, but we do have our guys to celebrate too!

Making a dozen plus cards each month is a great way for me to use my vintage stock and no matter the vintage, the cards are appreciated!

This week I needed a masculine card, so I started flipping through my DSP. Hmmmm, nope that won't work. Wellllll - nah, I don't think so. I finally got to a Huh! I think that's it! Okay, we have a base and some DSP, now what? Tah Dah! This is my final product.


I made a half dozen of these, which will last for a couple months. Out of 160 employees, we have maybe a dozen guys. Any of you moms out there looking for a place for your son to meet a woman - tell him to get a job in health care and he'll have lots of choices!!

The sentiment is from the Tin of Cards stamp set, cropped with the Decorative Label punch. The ovals were cut using the Layering Ovals Framelits. I used dimensionals between the Night of Navy and Crumb Cake ovals. You likely recognize the Swirly Scribble die cut that added the perfect touch. An easy card to make and I now have one less piece of DSP!

Stop back on Thursday to see what I made for the ladies. To be sure you don't miss it, follow me by email; simply enter your email address in the required field in the right column.

Until next time, take gentle care,

August 11, 2016

Pineapple Swap Card


Welcome! Thank you for taking a moment in your busy day to relax with me. I greatly appreciate your visits and your comments.

I mentioned in an earlier post that I had been in Chicago, actually Schaumburg, for a gathering of stampers. Besides learning lots, catching up with old friends and making new, one of the highlights of the gathering was the swap. We were asked to make 40 cards and at the end of Friday's classes, we spent some time swapping. I love going back to my room and laying all of the swap cards out on my bed.

It's always so much fun to see all the amazing creativity and different styles. These will go on to sample boards to have out at my classes.

I chose the Pineapple stamp for my swap card.

If you read my earlier blog featuring this stamp, you'll know that I cut this stamp into two pieces. It made it MUCH easier to create 40 cards!

I used watercolor paper for the main image. I stamped the bottom half of the pineapple in Delightful Dijon. With the thick end of my Chocolate Chip marker I carelessly traced the lines on the stamp. I gave the stamp a spritz of water and stamped my image. Pear Pizzazz was used for the top of the stamp. The sentiment is from the Layering Love set. The DSP is Delightful Dijon from the In Colors stack. I added a bit of linen thread to finish it off. I had lots of compliments on the card. The shading from the marker provided a realistic look.

I'm working on the tutorial for the box I featured in this post. I've only done one video tutorial, so it will take me a bit to get it right. I'll have it for you next week.

Again, thanks for stopping. Wishing you an enjoyable day!


August 9, 2016

Detail Floral Wedding Card

Hi Stampers!

My project for today is a wedding card for my godchild, Katie, whose wedding was this past Saturday. Katie and her husband are both police officers on a local force. With all of the recent happenings with our people in blue, it's scary to think of her out there protecting her community because in my mind, having known her since she was a baby, she's the one that needs protecting!

Anyway, I wanted to make an elegant card and the Detailed Floral Thinlits made that job a snap. My first stop for inspiration is always Pinterest, lots of ideas out there, but not exactly what I was looking for.

I used Shimmery White card stock for this project:
4 1/4" x 5 1/2"
4 1/4" x just shy of 5 1/2"
3 3/4" x 4 1/8", scored at 1/2" on the short side
3" x 4 1/8", scored at 1/2" on the short side

Using the scored pieces of card stock, line up the thinlit with the score line and run through the Big Shot. You'll need to use the Precision Plate with this die. The Die Brush will also make using this die much easier.

Burnish your score lines and attach the die cut pieces to the 4 1/4" x 5 1/2" piece of card stock.

The pattern on this thinlit has a lot of open space and I don't like being able to see the writing through the paper design, so I used my Fine Tip Glue Pen on the die cut piece on the left side, slipped the additional piece of Shimmery White card stock (4 1/4" and just shy of 5 1/2") behind the diecut piece and adhered it. I also added a few rhinestones for a bit more sparkle!

The sentiment is from the Floral Phrases stamp set that bundles with this die (SAVE 10% with a bundle). I cropped it using the new Sweet and Sassy framelits. 

I slid the die cut piece on the right under the sentiment embellishment and bow to close the card.

Floral Phrases was used to complete the inside of the card.

You could easily incorporate the bridal colors in this card, either in the die cut pieces or the background. This beautiful die makes creating an elegant piece oh so easy.

I hope these tips help. If you have any questions, please comment below.

Until next time, take gentle care,

August 4, 2016

Floral Affection

Happy day to you!

If you're looking for a quick, easy, clean and simple card, look no furter! The Floral Affection embossing folder makes a powerful impression in this layout.

I CASEd this set from fellow Pal, Susan Itell. Her clean and simple style spoke to me with this card.

I'm going to make an admission. I have a bit of a hard time getting rid of retired paper, ink, etc and do my best to use what I have, but then end  up not using current items, so that before I know it, I have lots of other paper that is now retired. It's a vicious cycle! Do you ever do that? This is LAST project I made using retired card stock - Not Quite Navy. My church is holding a huge garage sale and after making this project, I pulled out my box of one gallon zip lock bags along with my retired card stock and filled the bags by color - retired card stock, ribbon, ink and marker. I added a few more household items to my boxes and drove to church and dropped them off. I now don't have to think about retired card stock! I feel so free:)

No matter the color, this layout is beautiful and makes a wonderful gift. I recently met a colleague for lunch and presented her with this set. She loved it! She was so impressed that she asked me to design a gift for the presenters at an upcoming conference she is planning. How fun!

This is a great set to make ahead and have on hand when you need to give a little something to a host or friend.

What makes this card pop?
       Scored lines 1/4" from the edge
       Dimensionals lifting the main panel from the base
       A coordinating stamp on the inside of the card and one one the envelope

Thanks so much for stopping. I'd love to hear about your stash - please share!

Hope your day is a creative one!

August 2, 2016

Pineapple, the Symbol of Hospitality

Greetings Stampers!

I spent last Thursday through Saturday at a stamping event in Chicago hosted by Lisa Pretto. Guests included many of Lisa's InkBig members and Mary Fish's Pals. My convention roomie Janet, flew in from Nebraska. I picked her up at the airport and we pretty much talked non-stop until I delivered her back to O'Hare on Saturday evening. Speakers included Lisa, Janet Wakeland, Sam Hammond, aka Pootles, Patti Bennett and Kylie Bertucci. What fun it was to learn from expert SU! demonstrators. I'll share more stories as well as some swaps in the upcoming weeks.

You likely know that the pineapple is the symbol of hospitality as well as an extremely popular image right now. SU! is right on trend and has a fabulous Pineapple stamp that can be seen on page 124 of the catalog or by clicking here.  It comes in clear mount and wood mount. I used this stamp for my swap card (I'll post that soon) and was commissioned by co-worker Jane to create pineapple note cards to give to her friend who is hosting an upcoming gathering.

So, I hit Pinterest to see what was out there and found a great layout by fellow Pal, Windy Ellard - who was in Chicago too! Here's my CASEd version of Windy's card.

In addition to the Pineapple stamp, this card features the Hello stamp from Pop of Paradise, the In Color DSP stack and the Swirly Scribbles Thinlits. The Thinlits coordinate with the Swirly Bird stamp set. This duo is as versatile as the Work of Art stamp set. It is definitely a set to own if you don't already; you'll use it in so many ways.

To make stamping this image MUCH easier, I cut apart the stamp, separating the greens from the fruit. You can use a sharp scissors, an exacto knife or one of the wire/heat tools that cuts rubber and styrofoam. I don't have one, but have seen them used online - pretty slick. If you do want to create the full image in one color, it's easy to do with the clear mount stamps, simply apply both pieces to a clear block and you're set to go.

Here's a peek of the inside. The small pineapple is also from the Pop of Paradise stamp set.

Okay, I CASEd a great card, but now, how do I contain them? Hmm.... I did some searching and found a tutorial on Splitcoast Stampers for a hinged box that looked pretty neat. I made one with some modifications only to find out that it was too small! I liked the box, so did some math and came up with measurements that worked for my set of 4 cards with envelopes.

What do you think? If you'd like to see a tutorial on how to make this, leave a comment below. Here's the final presentation.

Update: To view my video tutorial on this project, click here.

The set features Crumb Cake, Delightful Dijon and Old Olive. I hope Jane's hostess likes it - for that matter, I hope Jane likes it!

That's it for now. Thanks so much for stopping. I love to read your comments, so be sure to let me know what you think of this project; would you like to receive this? Better yet, would you like to make it? All of the products used in this project are available 24/7 in my online store.

Don't forget, your July purchases can earn you $$ to spend in August! Click here for details.

Until next time, take gentle care!