Monday, January 30, 2012

MIA

I honestly don't know how time gets away from me  I can't believe its  been nearly a week since I last posted!  I've certainly been busy in the interim and have lots of great projects to show  you.  Today I'll start with a card I designed for one of my monthly groups who met last week.  It is a card that could be a Valentine or easily be altered for  a birthday or even Mother's Day (which is what one of my club ladies did!) just by switching out the sentiment.  See what you think:

Valentine for a friend using the P.S I Love You and Take it to Heart stamp sets from the Occasions Mini as well as a sentiment from Teeny Tiny Wishes

Inside view
Now I have to say that this is another CASE of a card I saw on our demonstrator forum.  The original designer (whose name escapes me) used the I [Heart] Hearts stamp set, which I don't own, so I had to get creative  in switching up the design to work with what I had on-hand.  The original card also used the new Hearts Framelits which are on their way, but haven't arrived in my stamp corner yet.  So, instead, I used a heart from the Take it to Heart set (which I received for free during an SU incentive campaign last fall) and punched it out with my full heart punch.  It doesn't quite fit the punch...it left a border around the image, but I rather like it!  I then die-cut the little hearts using my Fashionable Hearts embosslit die.  The background of the focal image is a stamp from the P.S I Love You set...have to say I'm using that set a lot this Valentine's day!  I always enjoy the challenge of redesigning a card to work with product I have on-hand...try it the next time you see something you love but think you can't make because you are missing some of the elements in your stash.  Just find ways to make it work with what you have.  As for the rest of the card, the colour scheme is pulled from the Everyday Enchantment DSP:  calypso coral, lucky limeade, pool party, poppy parade and soft suede.  Both the DSP and the little flower brad are available for free during Sale-a-bration...so get shopping and choose which freebies you'd like!

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

An In-Colour Valentine

Whew...what a busy 24 hours!  My workshop last night was terrific with my host earning a ton of free product and some super Sale-a-bration extras including a great reusable tote bag and a bundle of three SAB-exclusive products:  Fresh Vintage stamp set, Everyday Elegance DSP and the ribbon and brad pack.  Then it was home to unpack and repack for my monthly group at school.  After teaching all day today and then teaching my stamping class I rushed home to dinner and then out again to my son's first class of the new semester of Kindermusik!  Now I'm ready to drop...bath and bed are in my immediate future...but first I wanted to post a fun Valentine's card that I designed for my monthly group that met today.  It uses three of my favourite in-colours: lucky limeade, island indigo and pool party...not exactly traditional Valentine colours...check it out:
CAS Valentine (based on a layout by a fellow demonstrator on our online forum) using the Sweet Cake stamp set.

Inside view with sentiment from the P.S. I Love You stamp set.
One of the things I like most about this card is the colour scheme.  The island indigo, pool party and lucky limeade are all made using cardstock I received for FREE from the Sale-a-bration catalogue!  Nothing better than free stuff!  I used river rock for the card base, which is a colour I rarely use, but it works really well with the blues and green...so well that I fully intend to use this colour scheme again!  This card came together really quickly at my class today...and my ladies loved it!  It is the perfect Valentine to give to the man in your life. 
Now I am off to have a nice hot bath and get into my jammies...have a great evening and happy stamping!

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

It's the most wonderful time of the year!


Nope...its not Christmas...or back to school for that matter (have I ever mentioned how much we teachers HATE those Staples commercials?).  It is SALE-A-BRATION!!  For the next 10 weeks Stampin' Up is offering a ton of fantastic promotions.  What's all the excitment about?  FREE STUFF that's what!  There are three ways you can earn free product:



I am so excited about this year's edition of Sale-a-bration!  There are so many fabulous products that I can't wait to get my hands on!  I've been showcasing a few products over the past month or so, but look forward to more great projects using products from the SAB catty.
Tonight I have my first SAB workshop...on the first day of the promotion, no less!  I'll post photos of the projects tomorrow...it promises to be a fun evening.  Call or email today to book your SAB event and start your wishlist.  I'll do my best to help you earn everything on it!

Friday, January 20, 2012

Vintage Birthday

One of my stampin' buddies recently celebrated a milestone birthday.  I won't say which one, but it is the same one I celebrated last June!  In honour of her birthday I created this vintage birthday card for her...after all, she is a classic!

Birthday card for a stampin' pal using the Forever Young stamp set and sentiment from Word Play.
One of my favourite parts of this card is the background.  I'm not sure it is visible in this photo, but I created an embossed background on the black card base by randomly scoring a grid using my Simply Scored.  It was SO quick and easy to do and adds an interesting backdrop for the rest of the card.  Try it...you'll be glad you did!
I used lots of other details to add to the vintage feel, including a strip of Timeless Portrait designer fabric, an antique brad and some black velour ribbon that is long-retired.   I wanted the sentiment to kind of float on the card so I heat embossed it with pewter embossing powder and then fussy-cut it out before popping it up against the black decorative label (which I embossed using the houndstooth folder).
On another note, there are just FOUR more days until the start of Sale-a-bration!!  Are you excited???  I sure am...and I have a workshop booked on the very first day to share my excitement with a whole lot of new stampers.  I can't wait!  This weekend is all about making my list for my very large order that is going in first thing on Tuesday morning!  Happy shopping and have a great weekend!

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

The January Blahs

I definitely have a case of the mid-winter blues.  I just feel lousy and haven't had much interest or motivation to do much of anything...including stamp!  I have to say that has never happened to me before...stamping is usually the way I snap out of the blues.  In any case, I had to start planning for some upcoming classes and workshops, so I got onto our demonstrator forum in search of inspiration.  Boy, did I sure find it!  There are so many talented stampers out there!!  Today's card is one I CASE'd from a card by a fellow demonstrator; unfortunately I didn't save the post and can't give credit where it is due.  Just know that this layout is not my original idea.  Have a look...
Valentine's card using the P.S. I Love You stamp set from the Occasions Mini

Inside view with image and sentiment from the Sprinkled Expressions stamp set from the SAB Catalogue.
This card is so simple, yet effective.  I used the Scalloped Heart of Hearts embosslit to cut the grey hearts and then punched several different papers and stamped images using my full heart punch.  The punched shape fits perfectly inside the scalloped heart die cut.  For a little texture I added an embossed border using one of the folders in the Adorning Accents set.  The image and sentiment on the inside are both from one of the stamp sets that is available for FREE with a $60 order during Sale-a-bration.  Only 6 more days till the start of Stampin' Up's biggest (and BEST) promotion of the year...are you ready?  If not, start making your wishlist and choosing which items from the SAB catalogue you want for free!  Then book your workshop and get even MORE free stuff as a hostess!  Hurry...Sale-a-bration only runs till the end of March...after that those amazing, SAB-exclusive products will be gone for good!

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Amour for the Monkey

I was asked to be a guest designer for this week's challenge over at A La Card Monkey.  The sketch is a simple one which allows for lots of creativity and plenty of room for interpretation.  Since my week was SOOO busy last week, I found myself throwing this card together after work on Friday, rushing to meet my deadline!  The result is not my favourite card ever, but it is a nice, understated Valentine that  would be perfect for just about anyone.
Vintage-inspired Valentine's card for this week's A La Card Monkey challenge.

Inside view
Ok, I used a bunch of different stamp sets for this card.  I pulled one or more images from each of the following sets:  French Foliage, Creative Elements, Artistic Etchings, and Take it to Heart.  My colour scheme was simple:  Poppy Parade, Soft Suede and Very Vanilla.  I did manage to take my new Edgelits for a test drive, using the scalloped die to cut the bottom edge of my DSP layer.  I have to say they are as easy to use as the new Framelits...and they're a snap!  If you haven't already ordered yours, you'll want to do so soon...you'll wonder how you ever lived without them!
Now for other news...as some of you are aware, my master bathroom has been under renovation for more than a year and a half.  What started as a simple shower project turned into an almost complete remodel.  It has been a huge source of stress waiting for it to finally get done (yes, my husband was doing this project himself!).  Well, I am thrilled to say that my bathroom is DONE!!!!  My son is having a bath in there as I type this post...and when he's done it is SO my turn!  I am going to have the longest bath in history...I may not get out until I have to go to work tomorrow morning!  If you don't hear from me over the next couple of days...you'll know where I am...

Friday, January 13, 2012

Another Hectic week in the books...

TGIF!!  This week has been SOOOO long!  I hate the first week back to work after a vacation...it is always a shock to the system and this week was extra-busy with my team meeting on Monday night, a parent meeting and an open house at school on Wednesday and Thursday nights.  Whew... I have worked some long hours this week!  So I'll say it again...THANK GOD ITS FRIDAY!!  (In fact, tonight at dinner while saying grace I did...thank God, that is). 
So...tonight I have the final card from my One-Sheet-Wonder class.  Today is the deadline to register and there is still room, so call or email to reserve your spot if you haven't already done so.  And now, without further ado, here is the card...
Card #6 in my One-Sheet-Wonder series using Fresh Vintage stamp set and sentiment from Occasions Alphabet.
I saved my favourite card for last.  I'm not sure why, but something about this one appeals to me.  It is really simple to put together...I actually CASE'd myself for a shoebox swap I did at our last team meeting, so it must be easy! 
I've been so busy this week I forgot to mention that I am a guest designer for this weeks challenge over at A La Card Monkey.  I will post my card for you tomorrow but you can get a sneak peek by checking out the challenge later tonight.  I also found out that I was one of the Artist Picks over at Hand Stamped Sentiments for last week's challenge...
for THIS CARD.  If you get a chance this weekend, why not try an online challenge?  They are fun and a great way to ignite your creativity.  Have a great weekend, everybody....TGIF!!

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Spotlight on Fresh Vintage

How is it Wednesday already?  The week has flown by, as is typical of my first week back after the holidays.  Today I have two cards for you.  The first is a card I designed for one of my monthly groups and features a tried and true technique:  spotlighting.  I again used the Everyday Enchantment DSP from the Sale-a-bration catalogue...see what you think:
Thank you card using the Fresh Vintage stamp set and Everyday Enchantment DSP from the upcoming Sale-a-bration catalogue.

Inside view featuring sentiment from the Pursuit of Happiness stamp set.
I used a couple of techniques on this card.  The first is spotlighting where I highlighted a portion of an image stamped in a neutral colour by stamping in colour.  The second is distressing where I tore my cardstock and sponged using crumb cake and soft suede ink to give it an aged, vintage look.  As for the rest of the card, it is pretty straightforward.  I stamped the floral image in crumb cake ink on very vanilla cardstock, making sure I had one image fairly well-centred.  I punched the bottom edge with my eyelet border punch and then distressed all the edged with the tool in my cutter kit.  I tore the upper left and bottom right corners and then sponged as mentioned above.  I adhered this piece to a piece of Everyday Enchantment DSP.  To do the spotlight, I simply inked my stamp with markers, stamped it on a scrap of vanilla cardstock and then punched it out with my 1 3/4" circle punch.  I adhered it to the background using dimensionals, ensuring that the images lined up.  I added the lace trim and an antique brad as well as the little jewelry tags before adhering the whole cardfront to a crumb cake card base. 
For the inside I stamped the floral image, after first stamping off, in the lower right corner of a piece of vanilla cardstock.  I stamped the sentiment over top of the floral image in soft suede ink.  I adhered the vanilla cardstock inside the card.
The second card I have for you tonight is the next in my One-Sheet-Wonder set.  It is a simple thinking-of-you card...
One-Sheet-Wonder card #5 using the Elementary Elegance SAB stamp set.
The deadline to register for this class is Friday, so be sure to call or email to confirm your spot before then!  Till next time...have a great week...and happy stamping!

Sunday, January 8, 2012

H is for Happy

I bet you've been wondering where I've been all weekend!  I've been up to my eyeballs in junk!  I've been busy purging my house of stuff...we have too much of it!  I got rid of bins of my son's baby clothes (yay for having a new nephew who is growing out of his newborn clothes), sorted out toys, setting aside some for said nephew and others to donate.  This was a tough one for my son as he had trouble letting go of some treasured baby toys, but when I explained that Baby Ben (his cousin) needed them he was a bit more receptive to "donating" them.  Anyhow, I didn't do any stamping this weekend, but I do have the next card in my One-Sheet-Wonder class series for you.  Today's is another birthday card because...well, today is my mom's 69th birthday!  Its hard to celebrate when one's parents live 4 hours away but we did chat on the phone and she had a great day with my Dad and some good friends.  So, here is a birthday card in honour of my mom...

Birthday card using a sentiment from the Occasions Alphabet set.
Now I have to issue a correction...for days now I've been calling this DSP Everyday Elegance when, in fact, it is called Everyday Enchantment!!  Guess I should have my SAB catalogue out when I type these blog posts!  My apologies for the misnomer and any confusion I may have caused!
I do like this layout...it is quite different from anything I've ever done, but I think I'll be using it again!  Don't you just love to CASE yourself??  Just a reminder that the date for this class has changed to Friday, January 20th at 7:00 pm...register by the this Friday.
Tomorrow I am back to work...I can't believe how quickly my two weeks have flown...of course it didn't help that I was sick for most of it!  Ah well, time to go earn some money to cover all those Christmas bills that are filling my mailbox!

Friday, January 6, 2012

For a Friend

Today's card is the third in my One-Sheet-Wonder collection.  Just a reminder that the date for this class has changed from Sunday, January 15th to Friday, January 20th...if you haven't already done so please register by Monday, January 16th so I can be sure to have enough supplies on hand.  Now...on to the card!  Check it out:

One-Sheet-Wonder card #3 using a the Fresh Vintage SAB set and sentiment from the Occasions Alphabet set
Once again, I'm not going to tell you too much about how I put this together because I'll be teaching it in my class, but you can likely figure it out!  The DSP and brad are both Sale-a-bration items.  I used crumb cake seam binding ribbon for the bow.  The sentiment is stamped in poppy parade and is from the Occasions Alphabet set.
That's it for now...I'll be back tomorrow with another OSW card and another I made for a friend's birthday...till then, happy stamping!

Thursday, January 5, 2012

Something for the Monkey...

It truly has been ages since  I've had time to participate in the A La Card  Monkey challenge!  I've just been SO busy these last few months with my Stampin' Up business and  conducting holiday concerts for my day job as a high school music department head that I had absolutely no time to stamp for pleasure at all.  Thankfully the past few days have been much quieter and I had a chance to just sit and play with some of the new products from the Occasions Mini.  Today's card is one I designed using the this week's sketch:


Here is my version...
Sympathy card for Monkey89 using the new Bordering on Romance set and Twitterpated DSP from the Occasions Mini with sentiment from Petite Pairs.

I know the challenge was to do something "fresh" and what could be fresher than a new  mini with brand new products, right?  I just was dying to use this set and paper and a  baby card just didn't seem appropriate.  Anyhow, I really enjoyed watercolouring this one using my markers and blender pen...there's something so relaxing about colouring.  The design of this card is a little different...but it is still 4 1/4" x 5 1/2" in total height, though, so it still fits in a standard envelope (no extra postage required!).

Yesterday I promised I would  show you one of the cards from my One-Sheet-Wonder class each day this week, and I haven't forgotten!  So, here is card #2:
OSW Card #2 - for BABY!

Ok, now this one IS a baby card!  I love this colour combo for either a boy or a girl.  In fact, it is the same one I used for my nephew's shower invitations and favours.  Again, this uses the same sheet of DSP as yesterday's card...and the next 4 I'll show you!  If you'd like  to learn how to make this card and the other five as well as the pretty box to put them in check out my Upcoming Classes and Events page for details.

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Happy New Mini!!

The new Occasions Mini is here!!!  I am SO excited about this mini...it is absolutely full of fabulous new products.  I think I'm most excited about the new Framelits dies.  Check them out:

Hearts Collection Framelits Dies 125599
Labels Collection Framelits Dies 125598

 I honestly don't know how we lived without these dies for so long!  I have the Labels Collection and I think I have used them on pretty much every project I've made since getting them!  They are super easy to use and are such a nice change from the Top Note (not that I still don't LOVE that die too!).
Today's project is a perfect example of how these new dies can be used in different ways.  I designed a series of cards for an upcoming One-Sheet Wonder class and then created a box to put them all in.  Over the coming days I will post each card individually so that you can get a good look at them, but if you need a sneak peek, check out my Upcoming Events page HERE for a photo of the whole set.  Today I am featuring a birthday card...have a look...
One-Sheet Wonder card #1...all of the cards use products that will be available for FREE during Sale-a-bration, beginning January 24th.


I'm not going to give a whole lot of detail as to how to create each of these cards until after my class on January 15th.  Suffice to say I used a TON of Sale-a-bration product and my new Label Framelits!  I will, after my class, post the cutting layout for the One-Sheet -Wonder and the box template on my Tutorials page for anyone who is interested.  In the meantime, happy stamping...and enjoy the new Mini!

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Last day to order from the Holiday Mini and Sale-a-bration Sneak Peek!

Time to stop procrastinating!  Today at 11:59pm the Holiday Mini expires to make way for the new Occasions Mini which goes live at midnight.  If there are still items on your wishlist or things you loved this year that you want to have for your holiday crafting next year, you have just a few short hours to get your order in before they are gone for good. 
As if the new Occasions Mini weren't exciting enough, we also have Sale-a-bration to look forward to!  In just three weeks Stampin' Up's biggest (and best!) promotion of the year begins and today I have a sneak peek at some of the FREE product that will be available beginning January 24th.  Have a look...
Birthday card using Elementary Elegance stamp set and Everyday Elegance DSP available for FREE during Sale-a-bration 2012.
Isn't that paper just gorgeous??  I love every page in the pack!  I can't often say that about DSP packs, as there are usually one or two patterns I don't especially care for, but this truly is beautiful paper.  The stamp set I used is called Elementary Elegance...love this one because it has both images and sentiments...always a hit.  Notice the butterfly brad and pretty ribbon?  Those are also FREE Sale-a-bration items!  They come in a combo pack which includes 30 printed brads and two 10 yard spools of organdy ribbon...and it all coordinates with the paper and the stamp sets!  Gotta love Stampin' Up's easy coordination...makes putting projects together a snap!  The scalloped edge on the card was created using the new Edgelits dies from the Occasions Mini...they're an easy way to add elegance and detail to any card.
Can you tell I'm just a wee bit excited about this year's Sale-a-bration??  Just wait till you see tomorrow's post...

Monday, January 2, 2012

Time to start thinking about Valentines...

Now that Christmas and New Year's are behind us it is time to get busy designing Valentines projects!  Today's card is one I designed a while back for a class on watercolouring I am teaching at an upcoming weekend retreat run by my upline.  Check it out...
Sweet Valentine's card using the Greeting Card Kids stamp set with sentiment from Delightful Dozen.
I kept the layout for this card fairly simple because the focus of the class is on watercolouring using different media.  I did add a bit of bling with the silver glimmer paper to highlight the sentiment (have I mentioned how happy I was to see that it is carrying over when the Holiday Mini ends tomorrow??).  I used rose red ink to stamp the sentiment, which is the same shade I used to colour the little girl's dress.  The DSP I used is from the Flirtatious pack.  I layered it on a piece of whisper white cardstock that I embossed using my perfect polka dots folder.  The whole thing is layered on a pretty in pink card base.  Easy and straightforward, leaving lots of time to watercolour!

Sunday, January 1, 2012

Happy New Year!

Well, here it is a brand new year and to celebrate Stampin' Up has some fantastic new products to start your crafting year off right.  In just three short days the new Occasions Mini catalogue goes live, filled with tons of fabulous new goodies to tempt you:  Framelits dies (nesting dies that cut several different sizes of the same shape), Edgelits dies (dies that create decorative edges on your cards), and a gorgeous large doily die.  If dies are not your thing, there are plenty of new stamp sets, Designer Series Papers and embellishments to choose from (can we say pleated satin ribbon and scented embossing powders??).  I really had a hard time controlling myself during the pre-order...I truly wanted one of everything in the mini!
Now let's not forget that when a new mini begins, we must say good-bye to the previous one.  There are just three days left to order from the Holiday Mini, so if you adored those mini jingle bells as much as I did, you'll want to order your supply for next year's holiday crafting, as they will be gone after the 3rd.  As with any mini, there are some items that are carrying over; to see the Carry-over flyer click HERE.  (I have to say I did a little happy dance when I saw that the silver glimmer paper will be carrying over!)
Now on to today's post.  Since we are celebrating the birth of a brand new year I thought it fitting to feature a birthday card.  This one uses a ton of product from the upcoming mini and also works for this week's challenge over at Hand Stamped Sentiments.
Yummy birthday card for HSS# 99 using the Sweet Cake stamp set and Sweet Shop DSP from the Occasions Mini.

Now doesn't that look good enough to eat?  The best part is that it SMELLS just as good!  I used the new vanilla scented embossing powder on the icing of the cupcake to make this card smell absolutely scrumptious!  WARNING (to all you new year's dieters out there)...this stuff smells good enough to eat...when you're heating the powder to melt it you'll want to take a bite!  I used several new products on this card:  Framelits die for the calypso coral label that I then embossed using the perfect polka dots folder, the Sweet Cake stamp set, which I stamped in pool party and again in soft suede and then paper-pieced together to get the multi-coloured image, and Sweet Shop DSP (gotta love those cupcakes!).  There are also a couple of teasers from the Sale-a-bration catalogue, which starts January 24th.  The brad and the 1/8" organdy ribbon are both available as part of the Everyday Enchantment Ribbon and Brad pack you can earn for FREE during Sale-a-bration!  Conveniently, they both coordinate with many of the products in the mini...you'd think maybe Stampin' Up plans these things!
Honestly, the crafting possibilities in the new mini and the SAB catalogue are just endless...what a great way to start off a brand new year!

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