Friday, December 19, 2008

Blogger's Challenge #78 - Non-Traditional Christmas Cards

I have to say, that I loved this challenge! But.......I don't love this card.

I like the idea of this card, but after fussing with it and changing it several times, this is what I decided to go with bcuz I was too tired to mess with it anymore!

Those who were at my last 30 Card Christmas Card class will recognize this card, but theirs utilized the narrow White Grosgrain ribbon with a small bow. I'm thinking I should have stuck with that. Oh, well, for better or worse, here are the deets!

I started with a card base of Green Galore and stamped the snowflake image from Season of Joy in Green Galore ink. The focal point layers are Real Red, Pixie Pink and Whisper White. The word block from Season of Joy is stamped in Real Red on the white cardstock. The raised snowflake in the "o" of Joy is from Punch Pals and was stamped in Pixie Pink on Whisper White. I then punched it out with the 3/4" Circle Punch and popped it up on a dimensional.

The snowflake circle and the white and red layers were edged with 2 way Glue and dusted with Dazzling Diamonds to make it sparkle. Since this card has a contemporary feel to me, I added just a strip of Real Red Striped Grosgrain ribbon around the belly and attached the ends under the focal piece. Maybe that's the thing, I'm not as comfortable playing in the Bold Brights colors or doing the "mod" card style. But, that's how we grow as stampers, by stretching our creative wings and learning to fly.

Speaking of, I have to fly out of here - lots of teacher gifts to deliver today since it's the last day of school before Christmas! Emma is anxiously awaiting me at school! Tonight we have a fun evening planned, we are going to see West Side Story at the National Theatre in D.C.

Then tomorrow, Emma has her Holiday Ice Show at our home rink, the Prince William Ice Center from 12p - 3 pm. If you are local and want to come out, admission is free, just bring a canned good for SERVE for each person attending the show. Check their website here for directions. Emma skates around 1:30 and again at 2:40, but we will be there for the whole show. It's a wonderful show that showcases the talents of many local skaters and is a great FREE way to kick off your holidays! If you come, be sure and stop by the National Blades Fundraisers table. There are lots of raffle items and plates of homemade cookies for sale! Mine are the best though bcuz my friend Lissa made them for me! Love ya girl! You made my week!

Oh, and be sure to check out all the other Blogger's Challenge players this week by clicking on the link on my sidebar. They will have some fabulous creations for you to view, I'm sure!


Tuesday, December 16, 2008

My Favorite Card This Season!

Hello everyone! I hope you are staying warm and dry today. It is yukky drizzly rain here and the temps are expected to drop tonight so we'll have some fun black ice in the morning. Good thing I'm staying home and STAMPING!

Speaking of ice, I know some of you are waiting to hear how Emma's team did in Michigan at their competition. They skated their best skate EVER and finished 7th in their group. So, no medal, but their coach was so happy she cried. Apparently this particular event is akin to a national competition at this level because of the types of teams it draws. So for our girls to have done this well is really a feat to be proud of! I have some fun pictures to show you from our adventures there, I will get those up later this week.

I wanted to show you all a card today that I DID NOT make. It's such a beauty and my amazing stamping friend LouAnn Cruttenden from Michigan created this card. I receive a LOT of fabulous samples from amazing stampers all over the country and this year was no exception, but this particular card is truly my favorite of all this season.

LouAnn used the beautiful stamp set Winter Post which has that lovely skating couple in it. She combined Riding Hood Red, Chocolate Chip and Very Vanilla for this wonderful vintage feel and added that gorgeous Candy Cane striped ribbon. She did an amazing job and I just love everything about it!

If you were at my WOW Christmas Card class this year, you are already familiar with this card since you got to make it! And, some of you will be receiving this in the mail from me too! If you like it, please leave a comment so I can pass it on to LouAnn. She doesn't have a blog and I know she'd love to hear your remarks!


Friday, December 12, 2008

Blogger's Challenge #77 Christmas Ornaments

Hi everyone! Before I tell you about my challenge piece today, I want to apologize for being AWOL from the blog this week. Since we got back from Michigan we have simply not stopped and life has been really nuts in our home. Nothing serious, praise God, but just very full days and evenings.

I hate not posting, but when there is only so much time and so much of me to go around, something had to give. On the bright side, I do have a lot of projects that will get posted soon, I promise! And Tiffany if you are reading this - THANK YOU for the blog award! You are the best! I'll post it next week with my pass along choices, ok?

Whew, now that I've gotten that off my heart, let me share my ornament with you! This actually is one of the projects from my Procrastinator's Gifts classes this week. Yesterday's group loved it and I hope you will too!

It's pretty simple actually. Just stamp your images with Staz-On ink onto a piece of acetate cut to fit the circumference of your hollow glass ball. Cut a little tab at the top so it stands up in the neck of the ball to hold it in place.

For this one, I used the stamps from Winter Post and stamped with White and Black Staz-On inks. As they dried for about 5 minutes, I cut an exact size circle with my Coluzzle out of the now retired Bashful Blue Prints Paper pack. The edges were sponged with Chocolate Chip ink to age it a bit.

Then I used two Mini Glue Dots to attach the paper to the acetate, hiding them behind the snowflakes. This was then rolled up tight in a tube, paper on the OUTSIDE and slipped into the neck of the ball. The acetate layer will pop out, but you will need to insert a long thin object into the ball to flatten out the paper layer so it all stands straight. I used the end of the Coluzzle knife, but just make sure the cap is on!

To make the snow, I added about a teaspoon of Chunky Glitter in Clear through a funnel into the ball. The cap was added and then shaken a bit to make it stick to the sides a little. For the finishing touch, I cut 5" pieces of the Alpine Felt ribbon and Bashful Blue Taffeta ribbon and single knotted them through the top. Silver Cord was used for hanging it.

I hope you like this fun project! If you wish, you can shop for the supplies to create it yourself from my website HERE. Simply click on the SHOP NOW button and start shopping! Did you know that any order over $70 through the 23rd of December earns you FREE SHIPPING? Yes, it does! That's very cool!

After you are done shopping, take a minute and check out all the other Blogger's Challenge players by using the link on my sidebar. I know they will have great inspiration for you as well.

Stamped Blessings,

Friday, December 5, 2008

I {heart} this card!

Sometimes in stamping it's easy to add just one more embellishment or add another layer to make a project just a little "better".
But, sometimes, LESS is more.

I love this card for it's sheer simplicity. It's probably one of the most simple cards I've ever done, but it has a richness and elegance that is hard to miss. I hope that translates here on the blog photo.

This was one of the cards we did at my 30 card Christmas card class last Saturday and the girls loved it too! It's simply Night of Navy cardstock for a base with a front panel of Whisper White and inside panel of Whisper White as well.

We stamped the treeline from Lovely as a Tree in Night of Navy ink on the front and again partially on the inside panel. The greeting from Many Merry Messages was stamped in Silver Encore ink across the bottom and allowed to air dry -no embossing. We added an inside greeting from the same stamp set in Navy ink to finish the stamping.

The final touch was to just take the 2-Way Glue pen and draw around the base of the treeline. I then used Dazzling Diamonds glitter to make the snowscape sparkle.

Simple is not always my style, but I {heart} this card!

Thanks to all of you who are sending me good luck wishes for Emma and her team. The girls had their practice skate this morning and performed beautifully! We are hopeful for tomorrow morning. They skate bright and early with an ice time of 8 am!

We've enjoyed a fun day in Ann Arbor and I've taken a few pictures that I'll share with you next week (no way to download them remotely). Our meal times have taken us to wonderful places like Zingerman's Deli and Dessert Shop - Google it, you'll be amazed at how famous this place is, I know I was! The Dark Chocolate Gelato I had for dessert was simply put - AMAZING! And, if you are a fan of Food Network and the show Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives, you may remember Krazy Jim's Blimpie Burger when Guy Fieri featured it on the show. Well, we had dinner there tonight and I have to say it was one of the best burgers I have EVER eaten. It was truly a "dive" but it had so much character, we couldn't resist. I'm so glad we didn't! It's the first time Emma has ever eaten a hamburger and she loved it! Finished the whole thing!

So, there you have it, a card project and two restaurant reviews in one posting! Can it get any better than that?
Oh, yes, my online ordering special is still going on - be sure to get your order in before midnight on Sunday to qualify for the stamp set drawing! Click HERE to Shop now!

See you soon!

Blogger's Challenge #76 - Color Challenge!

Hey, it's Friday and you know what that means! No, not happy hour! Blogger's Challenge, silly!

I LOVED this color challenge - wanna know why? Because I already had this card done from one of my 30 card Christmas Card classes! YIPPEE! That's what I call pressing the EASY button. Yes, I'm excited, because it doesn't happen all that often, kwim?

Anyway, the challenge was to use Bashful Blue, Kiwi Kiss, Tangerine Tango and Close to Cocoa with a neutral - mine is Whisper White. I began this card with a piece of Frosty Day Designer Series Paper which has all of those colors in it. When I'm designing a project, I often just use my patterned paper for my color combos - SU! knows what they are doing so who am I to re-invent the wheel!
Anyway, I layered it onto some Chocolate Chip because I wanted a deeper shade of brown for emphasis.

This layer was placed on the Kiwi Kiss card base and then I stamped the greeting from Season of Joy in Close to Cocoa in the bottom right corner.

The focal point piece is simply Chocolate Chip layered with Bashful Blue and then the Whisper White piece. I stamped the tree from Season of Joy in Kiwi Kiss and then highlighted it with Dazzling Diamonds glitter. I also used Selene's trick and outlined the panel with glitter for added bling! Voila - finished and fabulous!

I hope you like the card this week! All the ladies at stamp class liked it - at least they said so! LOL! Be sure to check out all the other wonderful creations from the Blogger's Challenge players by clicking the link in my sidebar.

Don't forget my Weekend Online Ordering Stamp Set Giveaway! The ordering has begun so don't miss your chance at a FREE stamp set. a $50 order gets you in the drawing so go to my website HERE to Shop NOW!

We've arrived in Ann Arbor for the skating competition and the girls first skate is at 9ish on Friday morning. Keep your fingers crossed! Go National Blades!
Stamped blessings,

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Order Online and Win!

Hi everybody!

We are off on another ice skating adventure - this time headed up to Ann Arbor, Michigan for the Porter Synchronized Skating Classic. Did you know that Ann Arbor is the birthplace of Synchronized Skating? Well it is!

Since I won't be in the studio for you these next few days, I thought I'd run a little special for those of you who want to place an order with me ONLINE using my website!

Between now and Midnight on Sunday, December 7th, anyone placing an order online with me for $50 or more in products will go into a drawing for this very cool, now retired, new and Never used stamp set. Order $100 and get two chances to win!

Perfect Presentation was a Level 2 Hostess set last year and is the perfect set for you to use right now for making gift cards, tags and lots of fun embellishments for your holidays!

So don't wait another minute! Go to my website HERE and click the "SHOP NOW" button in the upper Right Corner!

When you've placed your order, I am notified via e-mail so it's just like Santa watching! I KNOW who is entering the drawing! I will pick a winner at random when I return to the studio on Monday and notify you by e-mail and announce it here on the blog.

You never know, I might just pick 2 names or maybe even three! Let's see, if Emma's skating team earns a medal, I might just give away 4 stamp sets - but you won't know if you don't place an order to qualify!
I've prepared some creative posts for you that will appear while I'm gone, so stay tuned for some fun stamping ideas! Now, go on, go shop!

A Star for Shannon

Remember last month when I went to the Regional Seminar in Virginia Beach? Remember me telling you that I got to spend a tiny bit of time getting to know Shannon West? Well, she has an amazing creative mind and one of the things she demonstrated for us from the main stage was this cute little Christmas tree decorated with ornaments she had hand made.

The ornaments were pretty special to her because she loves Diet Coke and used her empty Diet Coke cans and ran them through her Big Shot Die Cut machine with the Ornament Die.

Yeah, I know ! How Cool is that! The only problem was, she didn't have a decoration for the top of her tree. Now, how sad is that? Every Christmas Tree needs a topper and I figured the perfect one for Shannon would match her very cool ornaments!
So, on my last "supply" order from Stampin' Up! I added the 5 -Point Star Die for my Big Shot and started serving extra Diet Coke at my stamp classes! (Thanks for the help, stampers!)

When I had enough cans (5 to be exact) I cut them apart using my Craft and Rubber Scissors -Hey, SU! is going all Die Cut on their stamps, gotta find a new use for those great scissors!

I placed a portion of each can on the die and simply ran it through! It cut like BUTTAH! After I had my 5 pieces, I folded where necessary and stuck two pieces at at time together with Mini Glue Dots. They held long enough for me to use my Crop-A-Dile to punch a hole and add a Silver Eyelet so the pieces would stay together permanently. Once all 5 pieces were together, I took a small piece of one leftover can and rolled it up in a cone-like shape and used the Crop-A-Dile again to punch and eyelet it together.

The strap that holds the cone to the star was made by eyeleting two small strips of scrap can to the joint of two star pieces. I then wrapped them around the cone and trimmed the excess and once again punched and eyeleted with my Crop-A-Dile to hold it permanently.

I hope those directions are clear - it makes sense to me, but then again, I made the thing! If you end up trying it out and have questions, just send me an e-mail or post a comment. I'll get back to you!

Oh, and Shannon has promised to take a picture of the now complete Christmas Tree. I'll post it here when she sends it to me!

Ta for now!


Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Vintage Mini Albums AND a Big Shot Special!

I don't know about you, but Christmas is my favorite time of the year! I just love all the lights, music, smells even the crowded stores don't distress me! Most of my best life memories were made in December - two of the best are of my wedding, yes, Dec. 7th is our anniversary - 17 years! And my daughter's birthday is the 14th. It's really a great month for our family.

I have so many photos of Christmases past and other fun December events, and I really want to find a way to showcase them all, but not always in a traditional scrapbook album.

These cute little mini-albums are actually a redesign of my Fall Mini-Album that I posted back in August after I got my Big Shot machine. They are the perfect size to showcase just one event or occasion with enough room for journaling to remember the details.

I created the albums with just one die - the Top Note; and some patterned paper from the Bella Rose pack. The stamp set I used was Winter Post - love those skaters! The images and the paper were the perfect combination for a vintage feel so I just went with it and added the striped
grosgrain ribbon band and the Chocolate Chip Felt Ribbon to the rings.

The inner pages are made with Kiwi Kiss, Riding Hood Red and Chocolate Chip Cardstock.
The cover embellishment was made with the Scallop Circle from the Baskets and Blooms die and two of our fabulous circle punches.
These albums came together so quickly - about 1/2 hour total! I love how my Big Shot lets me get really wonderful projects done with very little effort!

Oh, yes, I promised you a special, didn't I? Well here it is!

Robin’s Big Shots Club – Special Offer – Thru December 31st

Purchase the BIG shot Special Edition Starter kit – catalog price - $195.95 (savings of almost $10 if purchased separately!)

and receive a FREE Die of Your Choice – my gift to you! ($19.95 Value)

Plus you will receive a FREE Hostess ONLY Level 1 stamp set ($20.00 Value)

PLUS $20.00 in FREE product of your choice from the Idea Book and Catalog!

Plus, become a member of my Big Shots Club and receive 3 FREE classes (total value $45) to learn all the ins and outs of the Big Shot and create some fabulous projects that you will simply love.

Check out the online Brochure HERE to view all the pieces described below plus all the additional dies and elements.

Here is what you receive in your Special Editon Starter kit:

Big Shot Die-Cut Machine (brochure page 2)
Multipurpose Platform and Standard Cutting Pads (included with the machine)
2 Stampin’ Up! Exclusive BigzTM Dies (Scallop Envelope and Top Note, brochure page 3 )
1 Stampin’ Up! Exclusive Sizzlits 4-Pack (Birds & Blooms, brochure page 3)
1 Stampin’ Up! Exclusive Decorative Strip (Join in the Cheer, brochure page 4)
Decorative Strip Cutting Pads and Extended Spacer Platform (brochure page 2)

1 FREE die (Valued at $19.95) your choice
FREE Hostess only stamp set level 1 – your choice
$20.00 in FREE product of your choice to spend in the catalog
3 FREE Big Shots Club Classes! (valued at $45 total!)

Your Price - only $229.50 for over $310.00 in fabulous products, tools, personal class instruction and projects!

This special offer is only good through me, your personal demonstrator and only through December 31st. Please place this order directly through me via phone or e-mail. If you order online from my website, you will not receive the special pricing.

If you are adding this to your Wish Lists, be sure to tell them it’s Robin’s Special Big Shot Offer. Their total cost is only $229.50 and I can have it shipped directly to them.

You will also need to have your Level 1 Hostess Stamp set picked out AND your $20 in Extra FREE product AND the FREE Extra die ($19.95 value). Be sure to list these items with this offer.

If there are No selections included, I will default to the “Best Yet” Level 1 stamp set, Cardstock and Designer Series Paper - $20 in product, and the Scallop Circle Die for your FREE die.

This is your chance to own this fabulous paper crafting tool! Let Santa bring it to you for Christmas, or contact me after the Big Day to put your Christmas money towards it!

Happy Tuesday!