Thursday, December 30, 2010

Stampin' Addicts Blog Hop: Build a Blossom

Welcome to the Stampin' Addicts Occasions Mini Catalog Blog Hop!  We're thrilled to have you join us this weekend as we share with you a sneak peak of some of the new stamps and accessories in Stampin' Up!s upcoming mini catalog.  I'm stop 3 of 24, so if you are starting here, follow the link at the bottom of each page to continue on the hop to see all 25 stops.  You may have arrived here via Yapha's blog.  Weren't her projects using the cute Take a Spin set great?  My stop on the blog hop features the stamp set Build a Blossom along with the matching Blossom Petals Punch.  Let's get started!

My first project was inspired by a card I saw on Jackie Topa's blog (I'll add a link later).  I needed a Valentine's day idea for a swap at my upline's December team meeting, so I made one of those cute hand sanitizer gift boxes you may have seen on the web.  Mine was made following the tutorial by Robin Messenheimer, which was based on designs by Erica Cerwin and Connie Babbert (links to follow later).  I used the beautiful flower from Jackie's card on my gift box.  The sentiment stamps on the cover and on the inside are from Teeny Tiny Wishes.

Up second is a card I designed for dual purposes - for this blog hop as well as for a swap hosted by a fellow Stampin' Addict.  I've seen various amounts of these beautiful petals being used to create this flower, but I liked how six of them looked.  To get the petals where I wanted them, I carefully poked a hole at the inner petal edge and fed a mini brad through each petal, arranging the petals as I went.  This technique worked pretty well while making the 11 cards I needed to send to Kim for the swap.  I stuck the flower to the card with a large glue dot, and added the flower center by double-decking some Stampin' Dimensionals.  The Pear Pizzazz layer is also popped up with dimensionals.  The sentiment stamp once again is from Teeny Tiny Wishes.

At our December team meeting, Marianne shared with us Andrea Walford's Gratitude Book project, which Marianne had redesigned for Valentine's Day.  I loved the project, so I redesigned it yet again, this time using the Build a Blossom stamp set and Springtime Vintage designer series paper.  The book is made with five Mini Lunch Sacks, available through January 3 in the Holiday Mini Catalog, in case you'd like to buy Andrea's tutorial to make one.  Each sack has a tabbed piece of card stock that slides out, great for journaling or pictures.  The sentiment is from the stamp set Seasonal Sentiments, punched out with the Decorative Label punch.  I think this would make a great brag book to give to someone like a mom and mother-in-law, and I'm planning to offer it at my next stamp camp with the gals at work.

Up until now, you have probably noticed the Rose Red color coordination of my projects.  My final project departs from that theme a bit.  The Springtime Vintage DSP not only uses Rose Red, but also features paper designs using Not Quite Navy and Always Artichoke.  My final card is also a more 'out of the box' use of the Build a Blossom stamp set.  When I saw this set in the Occasions Mini Catalog, I immediately saw a flame by using two stamps, so that's what I used for this card.  I stamped the leaf outline stamp in Daffodil Delight, and the center of the flame is the petal stamp that I used on the project above, this time stamped in So Saffron.  I added a little bit of clear glitter over the top to give it some sparkle.  The sentiment stamp is from Perfect Punches, and is framed with Very Vanilla Seam Binding (love this stuff!) along with the new Decorative Label punch (with a handcut mat behind it) and the Wide Oval punch.

Well, that's it for my stop on the blog hop.  I hope you've enjoyed my projects.  I'd love to hear which of my projects you liked the most, so please consider leaving me a quick comment - then you need to hurry on over to Allison's blog to continue on your way.  She has some great things in store for you, featuring the Thanks for Caring stamp set.

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

ISO Rose Red Ribbon

Edited to add:  Never mind - found it on the SU! Clearance Rack - SCORE!
Hi everyone!  I'm in search of some Rose Red ribbon.  It was in the last SU! catalog, 1 inch wide, stitched down both edges.  Here's what it looks like:

I'd be willing to buy a roll or even a few yards if you have some you'd be willing to part with.  I could also trade something for it as well.  Please email me at if you can help me out.  Be sure to come back this weekend for the next Stampin' Addicts blog hop (where you'll see what I used this pretty ribbon on!).

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

A Social Network Christmas Video

Not a stamping post, but I wanted to share this with you.  At church on Sunday, an interesting video was shown:  A Social Network Christmas, the story of Jesus' birth told on Facebook.  It's almost 4 minutes long but worth the watch:

I thought it was great, hope you did, too!  We get so caught up in the buying of presents at this time of year, with many forgetting the true meaning of Christmas - the birth of our savior, Jesus Christ.  Wishing you and yours a very Merry Christmas!

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Great Stamping Poem by Pauline

I was looking over the latest blog entries with Google Reader this afternoon and found this great poem that Pauline Slovak had sent to Michelle Zindorf.  Loved it so much, I wanted to pass it along (to the tune of Winter Wonderland):

Brayers roll. . . . are you listening.
On the card. . . . ink is glistening.
A Beautiful sight. . .  we’re happy tonight.
Stamping in a Winter wonderland.

In the kitchen we can stamp a snowman.
Then add color to his carrot nose.
You’ll say:  Are you Finished?
I’ll say:  No Ma’am, I need to add some glitter to make snow.

When we stamp . . .  ain’t it thrilling.
Even when . . . .  the powders spilling.
We’ll create and we’ll play. . . .the art stamper way,
Stamping in a Winter wonderland.

Isn't that just an awesome poem?  Bravo, Pauline, and thank you, Michelle, for putting it up on your blog.  Merry Christmas, everyone!!

Theresa's Ornaments

I organize our Secret Santa gift exchange each year at work.  This is the third year I've used to organize our exchange, and it sure makes my job as head elf a lot easier than it used to be!  We had a small group of us participating this year but it was still lots of fun.  For our gift exchange, we anonymously give a small gift each day (valued at $2 - $3), Monday through Thursday, of the last week of school before winter break.  On that Friday, we wait until after school to give our final gift, worth $10 - $12, at a short Secret Santa get-together in the faculty lounge. 

I have to be careful and not give a handcrafted item the first four days because everyone would know it was me, but I wanted to give Theresa something handmade, so I waited for our final day.  In addition to a Starbucks gift card and a beautifully soft and blue scarf I found at Kmart, I made up four glitter ornaments to give to her.  This batch of four ornaments came in a nice box, so that's what I used to give them to her.  I used Mop 'n Glo floor shine to coat the inside of each ornament, then added holographic glitter that I'd bought several years ago at a rubber stamping convention.  It worked just great, and I was glad I didn't have to use up some of my reinkers to make the ornaments like I did last year.  The ornaments I made using the reinker technique still look like new this year, so I hope the Mop 'n Glo ones last as well.  Theresa loved them, and that's all that matters.  Here's what I gave her:

I can hardly believe Christmas is nearly here!  We're feeling rather water-logged here in Southern California - it's been raining since Saturday, and it's supposed to last through Wednesday night!  I like the rain, but not all at once like this!  Thanks for stopping by on this rather soggy day!

Thursday, December 16, 2010

A Quick and Easy CASE

When looking for ideas for my December stamp camp, I ran across this card by Amy Celona.  I made a minor change of the mat behind the dry embossed image.  I ended up making 18 of these myself, and they've come in handy this week!  They were quick to produce and I love the simple yet elegant design that Amy came up with.

Thanks for popping by - have a great rest of your day!

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Another Christmas Stamp Camp Card

I've been searching blogs the past few days for ideas.  I have a stamp camp coming up and I need another Christmas card design or two.  I wanted to use Dasher this year (can't believe I didn't ink him up last year!), and after seeing this card by Bronwyn Eastley, I knew exactly what I wanted to do.  I pretty much CASE'd her card - just added the ticket corner punch and black brads along with some clear rhinestones.  I think this would make a great Christmas card to give to a guy.  Hy hubby liked it when I showed it to him last night, so this will be his card as well as one I offer at my stamp camp on Friday.

Had a tough time getting a good picture today as it's rather overcast and gloomy out there today, but here he is:

I hope the gals like this one.

Stamp Sets:  Dasher, Many Merry Messages
Inks:  Encore Silver, Cherry Cobbler
Card Stocks:  Whisper White, Cherry Cobbler (textured), Groom Specialty
Accessories:  Black Striped Grosgrain Ribbon, Antique Brad, Basic Rhinestones, Ticket Corner Punch, Black Brads, Stampin' Dimensionals

Saturday, November 27, 2010

A Circle Snowman CASE

This cute little guy is making the 'rounds' these days (Get it?  He's made of circle punches... hee hee!).  Believe it or not, I made this card at our local coffee shop where I like to hang out with my DH on weekends while he listens to Leo Laporte's The Tech Guy show on the radio.  I do quite a bit of my crafting sitting here across from my handsome hubby - be it designing something new, assembling something I started at home, or cutting card stock to prep for an upcoming stamp camp.  Anyway, onto today's post...

I first saw him on Corinne (aka Roxy) Sommerville's blog, then on Dawn Griffith's, and a little while later on Renee Van Stralen'sedited to add:  Corinne cased this cute snowman from Sharon Field, and Sharon's card was inspired by a card designed by Heidi Van Laar, which appeared in Papercrafts Holiday Cards and More Volume 5.

I have this thing about matting/borders, so I basically decided to CASE Corinne's card (Copy And Steal Everything) and put a Chocolate Chip card base behind the card front.  I love the snowflake from the set Season of Friendship, so I stamped it onto the Crumb Cake card stock.  I debated on adding some glitter to the snowflakes, then decided against it.  Unfortunately the sponge I grabbed wasn't completely clean, so my Marina Mist sponging of the snowman circles and snow has a few stray colors mixed, but this is my prototype, so I'll be sure to use a cleaner sponge when I make more of this little guy.

I don't send many Christmas cards, so I think this will be our Christmas card this year (and we'll make him at my next stamp camp with the gals at work, too).  Thanks for taking time from your busy day to visit my blog today!

Stamp Sets:  Season of Friendship, Seasonal Sentiments
Card Stock:  Chocolate Chip, Crumb Cake, Whisper White, Pumpkin Pie
Inks:  Craft White, Marina Mist, Basic Black (classic pad & marker), Cherry Cobbler (marker)
Punches:  1 1/4 inch, 1 3/4 inch and 2 1/2 inch circle punches, snowflake for arms, large star for nose
Accessories:  2 way glue pen, ultrafine clear glitter, stampin' dimensionals, eraser from a new pencil (to stamp eyes)

Thursday, November 18, 2010

MDS Journal

I created a journal last month based on a card I made on MDS earlier this year, and this past weekend I finally sent the journal off to SU! printing services to have it printed.  I was a bit shocked at the price ($24.95) but decided to try it anyway.  It arrived today, and although I was happy about the fast turnaround time, I was upset to see that the image didn't print as I'd had it laid out in MDS.  Nowhere did I see any information that you needed to take into consideration the area where the binding is on the left, so instead of my project being centered, it's unbalanced.  Here's how it looked in MDS (front, then back):

The photo cover bleed area cropped it a little tighter, but the image was centered in the bleed area.  Here's how it actually printed.  My scanner had issues with the shiny reflective cover, but you get the idea:

It looks great other than the unbalanced cover, but at $24.95 each, I'm not sure I would want to try it again.

Saturday, November 13, 2010

November Sparkles Team Meeting Swap

I've been trying to think of what I wanted to do for my swap for our upcoming team meeting.  Our theme this time around is 3D Christmas.  I did some surfing on the web earlier today, looking for ideas, and kept going back to this post as well as this one from Connie Collins.  She used the 5-Point 3D star die to create her gorgeous projects.  I don't have the die (ok, not yet - I just ordered it), so while I continued searching the web for ideas, I came across this post on Splitcoast by Cindy Cade.  Cindy has a great tutorial showing how she made her 'pop stars', and what's even better, when I checked the gallery there on Splitcoast for more 'pop stars', Cindy had uploaded a template for those of us without the die.  I gave it a try tonight and I'm really happy how mine turned out. 

Since I don't (yet) have the die, I used Cindy's template, using a little bit of snail to help hold it onto the can while I cut out the star points.  Cindy's stars have a different embossing for each point, but I personally didn't like that, so I used the Vintage Wallpaper embossing folder, placing the cut out aluminum shape in the same place for each star point to have a more uniform look to my star.  To emboss the aluminum, I used the multiplatform with tab 1, one cutting pad, then the embossing folder, with the premium crease pad on top.  I think I'll try it without any tabs next time as the embossing punched all the way through in some places.  I have a really old hand-held stapler that staples very close to the edge, which worked great to hold my star points together.  Since all of my points were hand cut, there were some slight differences in how they fit together, so I needed to hide the center where they all met.  The medallion, also inspired by Connie Collins, uses the Perfect Punches stamp set, stamped on Very Vanilla in Cherry Cobbler ink (I stamped two).  I punched out the center of one with a 1 1/4 inch circle punch, mounted that on an Always Artichoke 1 3/8 inch circle punchout, and then punched out the second image with the scallop circle punch, The two are adhered together with stampin' dimensionals.  I used a 1 1/4 inch strip of DSP from the Deck the Halls pack, scoring every 1/4 inch, folding back and forth to create the accordion circle for the rest of the medallion.  Large glue dots help hold it together as well as hold it onto the aluminum star.

To finish off my project, I mounted antique brads through Artichoke Deck the Halls big buttons, pushed the brad ends through the Cherry Cobbler seam binding, and pushed the brad ends through the two small holes I'd punched along the crease in the aluminum to adhere the button/brad combo.  Here's how it turned out:

I think I'll wait until the die arrives to make the rest for my swap since I'll likely need to make four or five more of these, but I'm thrilled I was able to make one without the die.  I hope the gals like my 3D swap - it was fun to make!

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Tea Lights Mix-Up

Last month I saw this awesome post by fellow Stampin' Addict, Tanya.  I used this project idea for my upline's team meeting swap last month, and it was SO easy to do!  I had planned to share this with my stampers at stamp camp yesterday, but I somehow managed to leave the stamp set at home.  UGH!  One of my stampers made the box and I told her I'd stamp the top and do the candles for her over the weekend, so it wasn't a total loss, I guess.  Here's two of the ones I made last month:

I made nine of these when I was making my swaps, so I have a few left over to give away.  I think I'll redesign it in a Christmas holiday motif and bring it back next month for stamp camp.  Thank you, Tanya, for sharing your great project!

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Hello, Mr. Owl!

Last month I shared the beginnings of this card with my stamp camp group as a preview for this month.  I've struggled with how to finish it over the past month, so last night, the night before stamp camp, I grabbed a sentiment stamp and some ribbon, packed it in with the rest of my stamp camp stuff, and this is what I quickly came up with while the gals were working on something else this afternoon.  It was a hit and most of my gals chose to make at least one.  Now if I can just find some time to make a few myself!  Here's this simple but cute card:

When you open up the card, this is what you see inside:

So glad I brought the supplies for this one along, as I forgot the stamp set I needed for the tealight project I had planned to do today as well, so this gave my stampers a fourth card to make.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

First Christmas Card of 2010

Finally made a Christmas card over the weekend.  I just love the French Foliage poinsettia, so I made this one with Cherry Cobbler and Always Artichoke card stocks and inks.  Before adding the brad center, I spritzed it with the Vanilla Smooch Spritz (I hope that's what it's called - I'm too lazy to get up and go look right now).  The sentiment may be hard to see (yeah, and it's crooked, too, drats!), but it was stamped in Gold Encore ink and embossed with gold embossing powder.  The sentiment, I'm pretty sure, is from Many Merry Messages (again, too lazy to go look).  We'll likely make this one at my December stamp camp.  I love the Bisque Pottery technique for this one, too.  You can find a link for a tutorial video on this by checking out the post before this one.  Between this card and the 15 tags I made with this poinsettia, my right hand still is a little numb from all the cutting!!  Here's how it turned out:

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Christmas Tag Swap, Take 2

I signed up for two spots on the annual Christmas tag swap over at Stampin' Addicts, and this weekend I got the second tag finished.  It's based on several ideas I've seen in the past week or so.  The first idea came from this poinsettia card I spotted on Vicki's blog.  She saw it on Connie's blog, which inspired her.  Vicki's inspired me.  I liked how well the Vintage Wall embossing folder went with the poinsettia, and it made me remember a cool technique I saw last weekend on Diana's blog, using the same embossing folder, which she called bisque pottery.  Diana has a great video showing how to do this technique, which involves using a brayer on one side of an embossing folder to add ink on the non-embossed parts of the card stock.  Such a cool technique, and it was just what I needed for my tag.  The DSP is Deck the Halls and the sentiment stamp is from the set All Holidays.  I used one of the larger antique brads for the center of the poinsettia.  The antique whitewashed one really goes along well with the bisque pottery look, but I only had seven of those left, so I had to use two of the other larger antique brads, which also look good.  I can't wait to see what I get in return!

Friday, November 5, 2010

Christmas Gift Tag Swap

Spoiler Alert!  If you are participating in stamper_jamie's Christmas gift tag swap, you might not want to scroll down.

I've had a lot of fun over the past year participating in card, scrapbook layout, and now gift tag swaps!  I broke down and picked up the Two Tags die a while back, and I decided to use it for my swap.  It was fun coming up with the design, which was inspired by this gift tag made by the talented Connie Collins.

Seriously, though - how many of you out there suffer from the same problem that I do?  I'm talking about being corner rounder punch challenged!  If you round the corner of two pieces of card stock that you will be layering, shouldn't the curves of the corners match up?  I tried and tried but the curvature of the two pieces just never seemed to match.  Is it just me?

Friday, October 29, 2010

Quick Halloween Thank You Cards

I wanted to give a little thank you note and gift card to the two families who provide our oldest with a ride to and from school each day.  Here's what I was able to come up with.

I used a card design by Sofia, one of my stampin' 'sisters' from my upline's team.  Hers was a Thanksgiving card with punch-art pumpkins.  I made mine into a Halloween card using some really old SU! product.

My hubby was happy because I designed the inside, too:

I put a Panera Bread gift card in each.  I hope they liked the card and enjoy a tasty treat on us!

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Birthday Card for My DH

Today my dear husband is celebrating his birthday.  I wanted a fall themed card this time around, so I took one I made earlier in the month and changed it up just a little, which gave me the effect I was looking for.  I hope he likes it.

I don't know why I always wait until the last minute to make my guy birthday cards.  I really need to have a bunch of them on hand to choose from.  I have PLENTY of girly ones that will do the job, but very few in the masculine category.  Anyone else out there have troubles coming up with guy-appropriate birthday cards like I do?

Happy Blogiversary - It's Blog Candy Time!

Wow!  I actually have two things to celebrate - the first is passing 50,000 hits on my blog earlier this month (thank you) and the second is my blogiversary at the end of the month!  My first blog entry was on October 27, 2007.  Hard to believe that I've been blogging now for three years!  Sure sounds like two good reasons to celebrate - that's why I'm going to offer not one but TWO sets of blog candy!  I have two Botanical Blossoms SAB sets from two years ago, along with two Holiday Best Level 1 Hostess sets from last year.  Two lucky winners will receive a copy of each stamp set along with some ribbon and a few other accessories like brads/buttons.  To enter, simply leave me a comment on this post between now and October 31 and I'll enter you in the drawing.

Monday, October 18, 2010

Christmas 8 x 8 Swaps

Happy Monday, everyone!  Today I'm sharing the final set of swaps I received recently.  My swap was shared as part of a Stampin' Addicts blog hop to feature products in the Holiday Mini catalog.  You can see mine here.

The first swap I'll share was unsigned :(  Never would have thought to combine blue with this, but I really like it.

The second layout was also unsigned :(  Love the use of the new tag punch, dressed up with buttons or brads and the lace ribbon.

The next layout is by Debbie Dutchess.  I love the Cherry Cobbler seam binding - just got some of that to try out.  The medallion with the antique brad makes a nice touch on this layout.

The final layout is by Holly Pedersen.  I liked the way she stamped the background and sponged the edges of the spots where the pictures will go.

I hope you've enjoyed seeing all of the scrapbook swaps - I had a fun time coming up with my layouts and it's always nice to see what others do.  If you haven't participated in one, or if it's been a while, you might consider giving it a try!