Thursday, September 30, 2010

Casing Myself! It's a Good Thing!

Have you heard the saying "Too much of a good thing......can be a good thing!"? Well, it's a bit different than the original saying, but since cards and stamping are non-caloric, I have to agree in this case. And yes, I mean CASE!
If you tuned in here for Wednesdays post, you saw this very same card using Concord Crush as the POP color - I loved the design so much that I went back and changed it to Cherry Cobbler, just to see how it would look - so tell me, what do you think?

I LOVE the Cherry Cobbler and Pear Pizazz together - the cherry is deep and rich and the pear is just the right tone of green to keep the card feeling contemporary. The only other changes I made from the original post were using the ornament stamp from the Tags til Christmas stamp set in the Holiday Mini catalog and I changed out the brad to a Rhinestone Fire Circle one.

So, there you go - it's easy to switch out just a few things when you want to case a card. That's where YOUR creativity comes into play. So don't hold back - case away and as you do, you'll see your creativity grow by leaps and bounds. Pretty soon, we'll be casing YOU!

Have a wonderful day!

NEW! Coffee and Cards Express Class!
Hey stampers!
Beginning next Thursday, October 7th at 7 pm
I'll be back at Caribou Coffee in Bristow (Safeway shopping center)
with an all new EXPRESS stamping class!
I'll be there the 1st Thursday of each month -
you'll create 3 cards from start to finish and enjoy your favorite beverage and/or pastry at the same time!
You need to RSVP to me by Wednesday, October 6th so I have supplies just for you!
Class fee is just $10 for a fun, relaxing evening out!

Do you like today's card?! Good, because it's one that we will be creating!
Place a $30 Stampin' Up! order that night and receive a FREE $5 Caribou Gift card from me!
Can't wait to stamp with you all!

UDI Inspiration Challenge - Colorful Fun!

Welcome to Thursday stampin' friends! I am so glad to be getting back into my normal routine. I missed last week's Inspiration Challenge for the UDI Blog, because honestly, when I got back from Utah, I was just plain pooped! All my best laid plans to create my project when I got in from the airport dissolved into my pillow as soon as I got my suitcase in the door! LOL!
After an incredibly busy 6 days working and playing catch up - here we are again at another Inspiration Challenge!
I was so happy to see this photo today:

First of all, it makes me smile - I LOVE bubble gum and this cute old-fashioned machine just makes me want a penny to put in it!
But, I was really excited because two projects that I'd made before I left for Utah really fit the challenge well, and gave me the perfect opportunity to show them to you!

Here is the first of the two projects, a fun gift bag!

One of the Advisory Board traditions is to create a bag for each member and Shelli of "My Favorite Things". We exchange them during the retreat. I love this because it gives each of us a glimpse of our personalities beyond what we already know - stamping!
I made 9 of these bags - the one I'm showing you is mine, you can tell by the initials on the tag.

I'm really having a blast using the new Candy Cane Lane Designer Series Paper and the coordinating fabrics! In fact, both my projects today highlight that collection!
Here is a close up of the tag - all made with my Big Shot!

I stamped on the Whisper White cardstock with the Teahouse background stamp. It was glued to a thin piece of cardboard before I cut the letters out. (I save the backers from my packs of DSP for just this purpose!)

The front of the bag was so easy!

I just used Whisper White and Real Red cardstock, the Candy Cane Lane DSP, Whisper White 5/8" Grosgrain Ribbon and some of the new Candy Cane Big Designer Buttons. The White cardstock was punched with the Eyelet Border punch.

All the girls just loved their bags - I had so much fun making them for each one! I'm so glad they enjoyed them!

My next project was created after seeing the instructions for it on my Canadian friend Dawn Pritchard's blog. She is also an amazing scrapbooker, so you should certainly check out her stuff!

Isn't it cute?!!
I love having my very own Coffee Cup Cozy to whip out everytime I visit my favorite coffee shop!
Here is a close up of it off the cup:

And here is the back side:

It is entirely no sew and super easy to make! Dawn's directions are way simple to follow - thank goodness! And thanks Dawn!

So, there you have it - two very fun projects that really - I think - play so well off the inspiration photo this week. Be sure to visit the UDI Blog and see what the other design team members have created! I know you'll be glad you did!

Stamped blessings,

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Concord Christmas - A Clean and Simple Project

Good morning stampers!
Over on the Stamping 411 blog, we Operators have introduced some fun, new features that are giving you extra opportunities to put your creativity to work. One of these new features is my responsibility and will showcase Clean and Simple Stamping - a style that many have embraced not only for it's elegance, but for it's ease! One thing is true, Clean and Simple does not mean boring and sometimes it's actually a challenge to KEEP it Clean and Simple. Most of us are natural 'embellishers' so it's great to apply the principle of less is more once in a while in our art.

Today's card is not only Clean and Simple, but it shows non-traditional Christmas colors, something that I personally struggle with and I'm sure some of you do as well. It's hard to get the idea of what Christmas should look like to you personally out of your head when designing a project, but it's great for us to break out of our box sometimes. If you were at my Christmas in September class, you might recognize this one!

Let me start with some measurements for you:
Whisper White card base: 5 1/2" x 8 1/2", folded in half to create an A2 sized card - 4 1/4" x 5 1/2"
Concord Crush layer: 4" x 5 1/4"
Whisper White layer: 3 3/4" x 5"

You'll notice that for each layer, I simply cut the cardstock 1/4" smaller so that when it's layered, it provides a mat of 1/8" all around. These are great guidelines for any stamper to follow, especially if you are a novice. This 1/4" variance will become your standard over time and is easy to apply to any size of stacked layers.
Also, if you need to create multiple cards, a two color mixture and this layout are perfect for making the most of your cardstock. With just 3 pieces of 8 1/2" x 11" Whisper White and 1 piece of 8 1/2" x 11 Concord Crush, you can create 4 cards.

Now, let's get stampin'!
Using Pear Pizazz ink and the branch stamp from A Cardinal Christmas stamp set, I inked the stamp and stamped it multiple times on the top layer of White cardstock in the upper left corner. I re-inked the stamp between each impression for this project.

Next, I inked the greeting from Many Merry Messages in Concord Crush ink and added it across the bottom of the White cardstock.
At this point, I adhered my layers together with SNAIL Adhesive.

To create the ornament focal point, I first cut a strip of Whisper White cardstock at 2" x 11". Next, I chose my image from the Delightful Decorations stamp set and inked it up with Concord Crush ink. After stamping on the strip of White cardstock, I used my Ornament Punch to punch it out cleanly. Quick tip: I always stamp my image first, then punch it out. When you hold the punch with the punch window showing up, it is super easy to line up the image creating an almost perfectly punched image every time!

This ornament was dressed up a bit by punching a small hole in the center (I used my Paper Piercer) and adding a Rhinestone Circle Ice Brad to it. It was then easily attached to the card front with two Stampin' Dimensionals. You could also add Dazzling Diamonds Glitter with a 2 Way Glue Pen or the new Rhinestone Jewels if you don't have the Rhinestone Brads.

Once the ornament was adhered to the card front, I took a 5" piece of Whisper White 5/8" Satin Ribbon and tied it in a simple, single knot. The ends were trimmed with my Paper and Craft Scissors (which NEVER see paper in my studio - only ribbon and cloth so they don't dull).
After adding two Mini-Glue Dots to the center knot, I adhered it to the card front, just above the ornament, creating the look of it hanging from the tree.

So, there you go - a Clean and Simple project that's neither boring nor traditional!
If you wanted to, this card would be easy to step up by adding embossing - either heat or dry, glitter, more cardstock layers, a punched border - really, the sky is the limit! But really, isn't it nice to see that you can have something lovely without having to use all the tools in your toolbox? This project took less than 10 minutes to create from cutting to finish - and that's something we ALL can appreciate!

Have a wonderful Wednesday everyone!
I'll be back tomorrow with a fun stamped project for the UDI Blog Inspiration Challenge!

Friday, September 24, 2010

Stamping 411 Saturday Sketch - Foliage a la Vintage

Hi everyone! It's time once more for the Saturday Sketch Challenge over on the Stamping 411 blog. I just love being part of this design team - it's so fun each week to see the sketch and reach inside myself to create from a linear start. I'm a very linear stamper for the most part, but love stepping outside my box and adding vintage or rustic elements to my stamping. That's what happened this week and I LOVE the results!
Here is the sketch:

And here is my card:

Yeah, I got a little carried away with the details, but it was so fun to just pick something and Go!
This card was actually going to be an Autumn theme with a pumpkin from the Autumn Harvest stamp set for a focal point, but when I opened my embellishment drawer to gain some direction, my eyes landed on my yet unopened Waffle Paper. Yeah - that's some awesome cool stuff!

My card base is Soft Suede cut at 5 1/2" x 8 1/2". I folded it in half to make an A2 card measuring 4 1/4" x 5 1/2". The next layer is Old Olive cardstock cut at 4" x 5 1/4" and run through the Big Shot machine with my Texture Plates - they haven't been loved in a while - I chose the antiquey wallpaper looking one for this card. Here's a tip for getting a nice, deep impression from your Texture Plates: spritz the cardstock with a little bit of Rubbing Alcohol before running it through the machine. It is damp enough to break down the fibers in the paper resulting in a deeper impression, but evaporates quickly enough to not leave you with wet cardstock. Just don't spritz too closely to the cardstock, it will stain it.

The inside layer is simply a piece of Very Vanilla cardstock cut at 4" x 5 1/4" that I've sponged with Soft Suede ink. I stamped images from the French Foliage stamp set in the lower left corner to give it some interior interest.

My card front layers started with a piece of Newsprint DSP cut at 2 1/4" x 5 1/4". I randomly stamped images from French Foliage on it in Old Olive, Cajun Craze and Soft Suede. It's a bit hard to see in the photos, but I also used a bit of Champagne Mist Shimmer Paint and stamped the speckled image in that as well. The edges were sponged with Soft Suede ink and then I added the strip of Waffle Paper to the back side with SNAIL adhesive. I was surprised at how easy this paper was to work with and you can be sure I'll be pulling it out regularly now! Here I just pleated it up and gathered it loosely across the adhesive, letting about 1/4" hang below the DSP.

I covered the seam by adding a line of Sticky Strip on top of the DSP and gathering a length of Always Artichoke Seam Binding across it. Again, so easy to work with due to it's flexibility and lightness. Love it!
The top seam across the DSP was covered with the Chantilly Trim for a different texture twist.
I added a combination of the Chantilly Trim and Artichoke Seam Binding to the right side with Mini Glue Dots after adding one of the little safety pins from the Antique Trinkets collection. They are so cute!

My focal point is stamped collage style on Watercolor Paper - this is wonderful to work with.

I again, randomly stamped images from the stamp set and added some more shimmer paint before sponging all the layers with Soft Suede ink and adhering them together. Before I mounted the focal point to the card front with Stampin' Dimensionals, I added an Antique Brad to the lower left corner.
The top layer is cut at 2 3/4" x 3"and each layer underneath is cut at 1/8" intervals, giving a 1/16" matting for each one. I like this thin matting technique on some cards, it gives a hint of color without making the focal point exponentially larger. (Ok, that's a really big word - even for me! What I'm trying to say is that it makes it too stinkin' big to cut it larger sometimes!) :)

So, there you are, another week, another fun sketch, another card! I hope you liked it and I'm really glad you stopped by to visit!
Be sure to visit the Stamping 411 Blog and check out the other Designer's projects. I know they will have great ideas for you - they are a talented bunch!

Happy weekend everyone - I'm having an unplugged family weekend since I was gone most of this week and so busy since I've been home. It will be nice to actually SEE my family for two days instead of just rushing past them to get something done, know what I mean? If you do, maybe you need to unplug too and hug the ones you love most!

Stamped blessings,

Stampin' at the Firehouse!

Last night was the first of my new monthly stamp camps at the Manassas Volunteer Fire Company and boy did we have fun! I took a few pictures of the gals in action -

Above is Cathy and Lynn in the foreground; Nancy is helping first timer Liz at the other end of the table. Liz is bringing her sister next month because she said that she'd never believe that Liz made her cards unless she sees it for herself! LOL!

Here is April, Sheli and Debbie, yep, just stampin' away!

Cathy is so fun and here she is hamming it up for the camera!
Go Cathy!

Everyone looks so serious, but there was some serious stampin' going on last night!

Here is my mother/daughter team of Laura and Becky - they were so speedy and finished just behind Cathy!~
Were the cards too easy girls?!! :)

So, that's just a peek at the fun we had in our new home! You simply MUST come join us next month! The next one is scheduled for Thursday, October 14th at 7pm. It's just $15 for 5 completed projects and when you make a separate donation to support the Volunteer Fire Department, you get a special Stampin' Up! goodie from me!
It's easy to join us - simply RSVP by Monday, October 11th to let me know how many are coming with you. That's so I can prepare enough supplies for everyone attending. You pay at the door and stamp away the stress of your day!
Now, doesn't that sound like fun?!!
See you then!

Thursday, September 23, 2010

A Great Team!

Hi everyone!
I'm back from my trip to Stampin' Up! Corporate for the Advisory Board retreat and I just wanted to pop in here to say hello!
It was an awesome 3 days - we worked very hard, but had a lot of fun as well!
Here is a photo of us in the lobby at the corporate offices:

Top row L to R: Stella MacKay, Jodi Reinert, Sharon Armstrong, Karen Duke
Bottom row L to Right: Megan Wheeler, ME!, Jan Wakeland, Georgia Giguere

We have a great group of ladies this year and I know we are going to make a great team as we work together to represent both Stampin' Up! and our wonderful demonstrators!

For now, I am off to cut cardstock and more cardstock! I have my first stamp camp at the Manassas Volunteer Fire Company tonight at 7 pm and while it probably wasn't the smartest thing to do to schedule a LARGE stamp camp the day after I get back, I sure am looking forward to it! I've got all the cards designed, now just to cut and prep everything!

Have a wonderful day everyone and I'll be back tomorrow with some more fun photos and a project for you as well!
Stamped blessings,

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Daffodil Greenhouse Card Duo

Hi there stampers!
I'm back today with two fun cards for you. I'm still at Stampin' Up! headquarters in Salt Lake City and since I'm posting this ahead of time, I don't have ALL the details, but last night was a pretty special one for us on the Advisory Board. I'll fill you in when I get back later this week, ok?!

Today's cards are the same, but different! Two looks from the same materials.

The only differences are the greeting and the way the ribbon is wrapped on the card front. But don't you love how that ribbon done differently gives the card an entirely different effect? Yep, me too!
I demonstrated these cards at a Stampin' Up! party I held last month and everyone loved them! One of my favorite things to do is emboss the entire card front with my Big Shot and one of the embossing folders. It adds so much dimension and detail to a card and did you know that Stampin' Up!'s embossing folders are large enough to accomodate a whole card front? Others that are on the market are not - another reason to love SU! :)

My supply list is at the bottom for you this time, ok?

I hope you enjoyed these cheerful cards - want to make one? Come to my new Card Class this Thursday night, 9/23 at the Manassas Volunteer Fire Company! It's at 7 pm and is just $15 for 5 completed projects! You have to RSVP though because I want to be sure to have enough materials for everyone that comes. I'll be there once a month from now on stamping with my friends - I'd love you to join us!

Have a great day everyone!

Supplies: (All SU!)
Stamps: Friends Never Fade, Short and Sweet
Cardstock: Daffodil Delight, Early Espresso, Old Olive, Whisper White
Inks: Old Olive, Daffodil Delight
Accessories: Big Shot, Circles #2 Die, Elegant Bouquet Embossing Folder; Large Scallop Circle Punch, 1 3/4" Circle Punch, Old Olive Satin Ribbon, Early Espresso 1/8" Taffeta Ribbon, Stampin' Dimensionals, Greenhouse Gala Designer Series Paper

Monday, September 20, 2010

A Cute Christmas Card

No, really, it's cute! Trust me!
Hey everyone! Happy Monday to you!
As you read this, I am sitting in meetings with the new Advisory Board at Stampin' Up! headquarters in Salt Lake City. It doesn't sound like fun, but really, it is! I love putting on my "business hat" and taking a different look at the whys and ways that Stampin' Up! does business. It is an entirely different perspective from that I look at everyday and has given me an incredibly well-rounded view of this company I love so much. Last year was my first on the Advisory Board and I was blessed and humbled to be asked back to serve a second term. God is so good, isn't he?!!

Anyway, just a quick look at this 'Cute' card! It's from my Christmas in September class that I held earlier this month. Everyone just loved this little snowman!

You have to admit, he is pretty adorable!
I combine the stamp set called A Cute Christmas with the Candy Cane Lane Designer Series Paper - did you know that some of the sheets have fabulous red glitter built into the paper? Yep, it's da'bomb!
My colors here were pulled from the designer paper I chose - Baja Breeze, Blushing Bride and Whisper White for the cardstock. The little snowman is stamped in Basic Black then colored in with Stampin' Write Markers. The greeting was stamped with Real Red, then punched out with the 1" Circle Punch. I layered it on a piece of Blushing Bride punched with the 1 1/4" Circle punch and added two Rhinestone Jewels to it for some pizazz!
The ribbon is the Blushing Bride Twill - so easy to work with - I love to fray the ends on some projects because it's simple to do, but here, we just trimmed them with the Paper and Craft Scissors.

You know it's hard to complete a Christmas Card without using just a little glitter, so I added some to the snowy hills under the snowman with my 2 Way Glue Pen. Several Stampin' Dimensionals popped everything up nicely and this easy-peasy card was done!
Oops, almost forgot, I did stamp the little snow buddy inside the card too along with a "Happy Holidays greeting from Many Merry Messages. Yep, now it's done! :)

Have a great Monday everyone! I'll have a new project posted for you to see tomorrow!
Stamped blessings,

Friday, September 17, 2010

Stamping 411 Saturday Sketch Challenge

Hello everyone! Another week has come and gone and here we are again - time for the Saturday Sketch Challenge from Stamping 411!
Here is this week's fun sketch:

And here is my card:

Isn't it fun?!!
I had such a good time creating this one - it's so bright and cheerful AND I got to use the new Designer Fabrics - I'm loving that stuff!
Would you believe that the Designer Paper I used is from Candy Cane Christmas? Yep, and I used the matching fabric too - but it's not a Christmas card!
No, I wanted to play off the cheerful colors and the whimsical polka-dots.
For my focal element, I cut several size circles with all three of the Candy Cane Christmas Fabrics and some pink felt from the craft store with my Circles #2 Die and the Big Shot.

I layered them all up with with my hot glue gun - I use a low temp one- and added the stacked circles to the card front.
Next, I used two Subtles Collection Brads and added them to the holes in one of the new Big Buttons. I chose Pretty in Pink to go with the Real Red button. Then it was hot glued to the fabric flower. This was so easy to do and don't you just love the look? I really like the mixed textures, it adds so much interest to any card.

The rest of the card is pretty self explanatory, I layered my designer paper and cardstock pieces - Real Red, Blushing Bride and Baja Breeze and some Blushing Bride Twill Ribbon. Punched an Eyelet Border and then mounted my simple greeting with Dimensionals to the card front. I used Teeny Tiny Wishes, stamped it with Real Red ink and punched it out with the Modern Label Punch. After adding two more pink brads, it was ready to go and finished this fun card!

I hope you like it as much as I did and that it makes you smile today!
Be sure to check out what the other Stamping 411 operators created by visiting the blog. I know you'll leave with a bunch of great ideas from these talented ladies!

The rest of my weekend is pretty full, I fly out to Salt Lake City on Sunday morning for the Advisory Board Retreat at Stampin' Up!. I'm very excited to go, but boy, do I have a lot of work to do before I get on that plane! :) I do have some things to post for you while I'm gone, so be sure to check back on Monday - there will be a new project for you!

Have a great weekend!

Simply Seasons Greetings

Hi there stamping friends!
I am a little late getting my post up this morning - I usually try and schedule it for you the day before - but I had my fabulous 'Stampin' Fools' party group over last night and boy, did we have a good time! Such a good time, that when they left, I turned off the lights, went upstairs and sat! That was the end of me yesterday! LOL!

So, now that I've had my first cup of coffee, I'm ready to write something intelligent (I know, that's a matter of opinion!) here on the ol' blog! :)
We have a new group member in the Stampin' Fools and she was looking last night at designing some simple Christmas cards this year. So I showed her this card that I'd designed for my Christmas in September class last weekend.

It really doesn't get much simpler than this folks - but simple can be so striking and so lovely, sometimes it's just the best way to go.
This easy card takes just one stamp set (Snow Swirled), one ink pad (Night of Navy) and two colors of cardstock (Night of Navy and Whisper White).

For my card, I added a little bling in the form of the new Rhinestone Jewels, some Night of Navy 5/8" Grosgrain Ribbon and a little texture provided by my Big Shot and the Petals a Plenty Embossing Folder.
In this next photo, you can see just a peek of the stamped inside as well, I simply added another piece of Whisper White cardstock and stamped some bitty snowflakes along with the inside greeting from the stamp set. So simple and so quickly done!

The cardstock cutting for this is easy too - my Night of Navy card base is simply a 1/2 sheet of 8 1/2" x 11" cardstock. I cut it across the middle at 5 1/2", then folded it to make a 4 1/4" x 5 1/2" card.
The large Whisper White pieces for the card front and card inside are cut the same - 4" x 5 1/4" (just a 1/4" smaller than the actual card base)

Now, here's the easy trick - when deciding what size to cut the cardstock for your focal image, a good rule of thumb is to cut the piece you will be stamping on the same size as your block. Then the layer, or mat for it is cut at just 1/4" larger, so when they are layered together, you have a nice 1/8" border all around.
That's pretty much what I do all the time, and it helps me to know what size to cut all the layers underneath as well, especially when I'm using more than just two.

The ribbon is cut at 5 1/2", giving you 3/4" of an inch to wrap around the back of the white cardstock and adhere in place. That's my rule of thumb as well for ribbon. 3/4" of an inch is a nice amount to fold onto the back to hold it in place well.

Another trick to make a simple card look professional is the use of Stampin' Dimensionals. These are one of my BFF's in stamping and I use a ton of them. Just ask my stamping friends who come to my classes! :) But, giving your focal image a little 'lift' really makes it pop and the dimension creates an elegance you don't find at your local card store.
I don't know about you, but I don't think that paying $3 - $5 apiece for a FLAT card is such a great deal!
And can I tell you something else? I am always thrilled to hear from friends who have received a card from me because they invariably say that they "just can't throw it out", or that they've tossed all their other Christmas cards, but even in April, they still have mine on display. Not only does it make me feel great because they liked it, but it makes me feel great because they liked it enough to KEEP. You can't buy that in a card shop......

So, now you know some of my secrets and I hope they help you in your creative process as well. If you need any of the supplies I've talked about, or others for that matter, please visit my Stampin' Up! website online store where you can shop in your jammies 24/7! Just click the SHOP NOW button at the top right to enter the store.
All of you who place online orders this month will receive a special handmade card from me in the mail, AND you'll go in the drawing for the Perfect Product of the month!

Have a great day everyone - and go stamp something! :)

Thursday, September 16, 2010

UDI Inspiration Challenge - Among the Clouds

Isn't this an amazing photo?
I just love it; it's breathtaking to me.
This was our inspiration photo for this week's challenge on the UDI Blog and honestly folks, when I opened it, it took my breath away. As I looked at it, I thought, "How in the world am I going to be able to translate this to a paper medium?" It reminds me of the verse in the book of Psalms "The heavens declare the glory of God; the skies proclaim the work of his hands." Psalm 19:1

So, since any artwork of mine is like rubbish compared to the beauty of God's handiwork, I went with my gut and started with the colors. Choosing Marina Mist, Bashful Blue and Whisper White, I tried to interpret how I felt when looking at the photo - free and full of hope for the future.

The greeting I used is from Hope Happens and always reminds me to stay grounded in God's word and to trust his plan for me - he dreams bigger dreams for us than we ever could you know!

My card is a simple one, 4 1/4" square and I kept the embellishments simple so they would stand out on the white background. I stamped a piece of Whisper White cardstock with the Dot, Dot, Dot A la' Carte stamp and ran it through the Big Shot with the Beautiful Wings Embosslit Die. The butterflies were lightly sponged with Bashful Blue ink and the largest has antennae made of Marina Mist 1/8" Taffeta Ribbon.

To add emphasis to the greeting, I chalked over the word 'heart' with Bashful Blue pastel.
Really, that's all this card needed - keeping it simple, but lovely and encouraging.
Thanks so much for stopping by today - I'm so glad you did!
Be sure to visit the UDI Blog as well and see what the other design team members created with our gorgeous inspiration photo!

Have a blessed day - and let your heart have wings!

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Dashing Around Today!

So, what are ya'll doing today?!
I am going to be moving faster than a long-tailed cat in a room full of rocking chairs! LOL! Wow, I haven't said that in a long time, but it sure does apply to my day today!
I have two weeks of UDI Blog and Stamping 411 Challenges to create for, a downline meeting to prep for and I'm still working on some special projects for the Advisory Board retreat next week. I leave early Sunday morning for Salt Lake City, but boy, that day is coming up fast! Guess I'd better get busy, eh?

Today's card is another one that I designed for my Christmas in September class last Saturday.
It had been a long time since I had inked up Dasher and he was missing me!

There is a lot going on with this card, but it all comes together so easily! It's just Real Red cardstock for the cardbase, layered with a piece of Whisper White and randomly stamped with a snowflake from Snow Swirled in Crumb Cake ink. I sponged the edges with a little Real Red ink.

The focal point is a piece of Crumb Cake cardstock cut out with the Top Note Die and the Big Shot. I stamped Dasher in Early Espresso ink and then added the postal details with stamps from Winter Post (may this set never retire!) and Crumb Cake ink.
Next, I ran it through the Big Shot again with the Snowflakes Embossing Folder from the Holiday Mini Catalog. Love this collage effect! I added a piece of Real Red Taffeta Ribbon around the left side, then added the layered, punched snowflakes with the Chocolate Chip Brad in the middle. The entire Top Note piece was mounted on the card front with Stampin' Dimensionals - of course! :)

It's one of my favorites from the class last Saturday, and I hope you like it too!
Have a wonderful day everyone! Go stamp something, I know I will be!

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Greenhouse Gala Note Card Package

Sometimes stampers, you need a simple gift for someone who seemingly has everything.
Well, who couldn't use some uber cute notecards?
I think (next to money) that they are always the right size and always the right color! LOL!
Today I'm sharing a notecard package that I made up for a new hostess in August.

I like to spoil my hostesses and these super cute and super easy notecards were made for her in a jiffy. And the packaging was as quick as just snapping my fingers! Ok, not really, but it seemed like it!

I used the gorgeous Greenhouse Gala Designer Paper and some Old Olive and Whisper White cardstock. This was paired with some 1/8" Daffodil Delight Taffeta Ribbon for some lovely, seasonless cards. I used the For You Flower A la' Carte stamp and punched it out with my Fancy Flower Punch.
The notecards are sized at 4 1/4" square so they fit nicely in the Medium Whisper White Envelopes.
All tucked in a Large Cello Bag with a Greenhouse Gala DSP topper, it's finished off with a Rhinestone Jewel on the flower for a little bling!
My hostess loved this little gift and I hope you do too!
Have a wonderful day everyone - remember, you can place an order for any or all of the supplies I used on this project today by just visiting my Stampin' Up! Website - simply click the SHOP NOW button at the top right corner and you are on your way!
All online orders this month not only receive the Thank You card of the month from me, but will be entered into the drawing for the Perfect Product of the month! Now, you don't want to miss that, do you? :)

Back tomorrow with another fun project for you!

Monday, September 13, 2010

Rustic Snowflakes

Good morning stamper!
This is going to be a quick post because I am headed for a day in the studio!
I have a Plethora of Projects to complete and multiple deadlines this week - so I'm gonna be one busy stamper! :)
But I love it!!!!

Today's card is one that I designed for my Christmas in September class last Saturday. I love the rustic, masculine feel of it - very different than my norm!
I used Naturals Ivory cardstock for the top layer and ran it through my Big Shot with the new Snowflakes Embossing Folder.
After tearing the bottom, I sponged all over with Soft Suede ink, really emphasizing the snowflakes - love this technique!
The greeting comes from the Christmas Greetings stamp set, a handy 2 stamp set that's perfect for all your Christmas cards. I inked it with Riding Hood Red to match the middle layer of cardstock.

The focal point was stamped with the snowflake from the Winter Post stamp set using Soft Suede on Naturals Ivory. I punched it out with the 1 3/4" Circle Punch and layered it on a piece of Always Articoke cardstock that was cut with my Big Shot and the Circle #2 Die.
I added the Fire Square Rhinestone Brad to the center with my Paper Piercer and Mat Pack.
It's made to look like a Christmas ornament by punching a hole at the top and stringing it on a piece of Linen Thread which is attached to the back of the card layers. Two Stampin' Dimensionals behind the ornament holds it in place.

The inside is another piece of Naturals Ivory cardstock with more stamped snowflakes and part 2 of the Christmas Greetings stamp set. A little sponging on the edges finishes it off nicely!

I hope you like the rustic feel of today's card - let me know what you think by leaving a comment! I love knowing you are out there!
Have a blessed day!

Friday, September 10, 2010

Stamping 411 Saturday Sketch Challenge

Hi there stamping friends! It's one of my favorite times of the week - the weekly sketch challenge from Stamping 411! You know the drill, we operators at the 411 get a sketch to work with each week and the challenge is to see just what in the world we are going to make out of it!~

Here is the sketch we received for this week:

Align CenterAnd here is my card project:

Sometimes my most favorite projects start out as either an experiment or a mistake - in this case it was an experiment.
I wanted to try the Inked Embossing Folder technique with the new Snowflake Embossing Folder from the Holiday Mini Catalog. So, I pulled out a piece of Crumb Cake cardstock, just intending to play with it. Well, I inked the embossing folder with Whisper White Craft Ink using my Brayer and after placing the cardstock in the folder, ran it through my Big Shot.
It looked so cool!
But, I thought, well, that's gonna take a while to dry, maybe I should heat emboss it.
So, I pulled out my Iridescent Ice Embossing Powder and my Heat Tool and well, just look! Isn't it a cool effect? I love the raised Crumb Cake snowflakes on the sparkly background! The Crumb Cake cardstock combined with the Iridescent Ice embossing powder gives the Whisper White Craft ink a look more like Very Vanilla - very creamy, yet sparkly!

So after that, the rest was easy! I cut a piece of Crumb Cake cardstock at 4 1/4" x 11" and folded it lengthwise and then random stamped a snowflake from the Snow Swirled stamp set on the front using Crumb Cake ink.

I mounted the embossed cardstock piece on a piece of Early Espresso cardstock cut at 4" x 5 1/4". (the embossed piece is cut at 3 7/8" x 5 1/8")

For the embellishments, I wrapped a piece of Very Vanilla Satin Ribbon around the layered cardstock pieces and secured it on the back. Then I added a piece of Early Espresso 1/8" Taffeta Ribbon over that.

For my focal point, I punched two snowflakes with my Jumbo Snowflake punch, one from Early Espresso cardstock and one from a piece of sparkly Crumb Cake cardstock that I'd heat embossed the same way I did the background.
Using my Paper Piercer and Mat Pack, I added a hole in the center of each and attached them together through the background layers with one of those amazing Antique Brads! Seriously, I LOVE them!
The greeting was made with the Tiny Tags stamp set and the new 3/4" x 15/16" Oval Punch (yes, that punch needs a simpler name! LOL!). I just stamped the images I wanted using Early Espresso ink on Crumb Cake cardstock then punched them out. They were strung on a piece of Linen Thread which was wrapped around the brad to hang loosely from the card front. So easy!

Not to leave the inside empty, I simply added some Crumb Cake snowflakes there and a greeting in Early Espresso from the God's Blessings stamp set.

This might end up being one of my favorite cards this season and is definitely in the running for my WOW Christmas Cards classes next month!

I hope you like it too and if you do, be sure to leave me a comment! I love hearing from you all!
Be sure to visit the Stamping 411 blog as well and see what the other operators created from this sketch - I know you will be inspired to play along with us!

Have a wonderful weekend everyone!

Jeweled Tiny Teacup

Aaah, Friday.....seems like the perfect day to make time for a cup of tea and spend a relaxing few minutes sitting on my deck watching the clouds go by in the gorgeous September sky.
Yes, that would be awesome, don't you think?

'Cept, it's not gonna happen today, at least here it's not! LOL!
But, at least I have a lovely Clean and Simple card to share with you all today - it kind of makes you THINK of all those wonderful things, doesn't it?

I was fortunate enough to be able to do a special presentation several weeks ago and this is one of the cards I designed to showcase. It uses the adorable Tiny Teacup A La' Carte stamp and just two of our luscious new colors - Marina Mist and Daffodil Delight.

It's a very simple 4 1/4" square card, Whisper White on Whisper White cardstock and the two colors together. The only extras I used were some Marina Mist Taffeta Ribbon and the Rhinestone Self-Adhesive Jewels.
The stamp was inked with the Stampin' Spot Daffodil Delight, omitting the greeting and stamped on the bottom of the main panel. After masking the stamped teacup with one I had stamped on a sticky note, I then used my Stamp-A-Ma-Jig stamp positioner to stamp the teacup again, stacked inside the first one. So easy and so very cute!

I inked the stamp one more time, just the greeting and added it below the teacups, again, using my Stamp-A-Ma-Jig. The teacup image was stamped on the inside right corner of the card too.

The ribbon was wrapped around the main panel and secured on the back with SNAIL and I added the bow with some Mini Glue Dots. The last step was to add some bling and I simply placed 3 of the tiny Rhinestones directly on the ribbon.

I just love this little card - it's just full of sweetness and so fresh looking - kind of like a lovely September afternoon.
Have a blessed day everyone!

Thursday, September 9, 2010

UDI Inspiration Challenge - Color My World!

Hey stampers!
It's that time again - another Inspiration Challenge over on the UDI Blog and I have a fun project to share with you!

It's back-to-school week around here and I'm sure that it's been a shock to the system for many - me included - having that alarm clock go off super early again!
I am NOT made for 6 am, just sayin'!
So, with the early mornings, not so early nights and all the back-to-school stuff in between, this little stamper is tired! Good thing the inspiration photo this week was a bright one!
Here is a view of the cute project I was inspired to make:

And here is our Inspiration Photo:

This just screamed back-to-school for me and it played right into something I needed to make for Emma. She has P.E. on alternate days at her school and needs to carry her gym clothes back and forth. So, I got her a small, neon green canvas bag for her smellies and it was just so PLAIN! It needed a tag! Better yet, a Stampin' Up! tag made especially for her by Mom! Yeah!
Now, I don't know if she'll be the envy of all her friends (probably not), but at least her gym bag will be cute!
Here is a close up shot of the front of the tag:

I used a combination of current and retired products to make this - COLOR was key so I made use of what worked, kwim?

Here is a photo of the back side, I almost like it best:

I love, love how this turned out and Emma did too! Whew! At her age, you never know!
To make the tag itself, I used my Tombow Multipurpose Adhesive to adhere Whisper White cardstock and retired Island Oasis DSP to opposite sides of the cardboard that came with a package of the new Designer Fabric. Now that's recycling!
I ran it through the Big Shot with my Two Tags Die and then stamped on the Whisper White side with the Extreme Elements stamp set. I used Rich Razzleberry, Daffodil Delight, Tempting Turquoise and Melon Mambo - very bright!

The letters were cut with my Big Shot as well using the Simple Letters Dies. I stamped on them too and after adhering the letters to the tag with more Tombow, I covered them with Crystal Effects to make them shine!
The ribbon is some retired Rich Razzleberry Polka Dot Grosgrain and I tied it through a Pewter Jumbo Eyelet that I'd added with the Crop-A-Dile.

This project was so easy and fun to make - literally from scratch it only took me 30 minutes to finish except for the drying time for the Crystal Effects and I started with no plan! It's all about the Big Shot folks, it makes my stamping life so easy!

Be sure to stop over at the UDI Blog sometime today and see what the other Design Team members have created for you. I know you'll be inspired!
Have a wonderful day!