Monday, October 31, 2011

Happy Halloween

Hello stampers and welcome to another week of The Classic Card!

I don't know about you, but I can hardly believe that it is the end of October already.  Will somebody please drag their feet with me and maybe we can slow this mad whirl of days down a bit.  It's kind of like a merry-go-round that is going too fast.  A glance out my stamp room window this morning shows blue skies and pretty fall trees that look so much more vibrant in the sunshine.  I hope that you are enjoying a spot of sun this morning as well!

Since today is Halloween, I've got just the card for you.  It is a little something different, using a Letterpress Plate for the Big Shot. 

You can find the Letterpress Plates for the Big Shot on page 217 of the big catalog.  We haven't played with these much at stamping parties, but they give the look of a card printed on an old-world letterpress.  The image is debossed (pressed down into the paper).  If you've ever been to Oblation Papers in Bridgeport Village, you know how expensive this type of card is.  You'd be shocked to see that they run $5 and up just for a simple card with no embellishments.  With your Big Shot and a Letterpress Plate ( $5.95- $7.95), you can easily achieve this high-end look. 

I inked the words "Trick or Treat" with a Pumpkin Pie Craft spot (the small ink pads) and the trim with an Old Olive craft spot.  You must use craft ink (pigment-based) with the Letterpress Plates.  The card is then "printed" ( run through the Big Shot) on watercolor paper (p. 181).  After printing, dry the craft ink with a heat gun, then set your card front aside for a while to cool.  I adhered my letterpressed focal panel to a Chocolate Chip card and added some Pumpkin Pie and Old Olive grosgrain ribbon to repeat the colors of my printing. 

Speaking of Trick or Treat... do you have plenty of candy for tonight, or have you been raiding your supply? I have found a great way to stay away from the Halloween candy.  I only buy candy I don't like... that way I'm not tempted to sample it.  So I have all 285 Tootsie Roll pops ready for the little goblins tonight.

Have a great Monday everyone and meet me back here tomorrow for another classic card.


Friday, October 28, 2011

Out to Lunch

Happy Friday, Stampers! 

I'm sorry to have missed blogging yesterday, but I was out to lunch.  No, I don't mean I just forgot because I was in a mental fog.  I mean I really was out to lunch, as in having fun with friends.  Yesterday was such a beautiful day, I decided to play hooky from all things stamping related and just have a day off.  So a few of my Bunco buddies and I went shopping and then had lunch.  It was a refreshing change from my daily routine, that's for sure!  But now I'm back and I have another card to share with you. 

As I get older, and I'm sure many of you have noticed this too, suddenly I seem to need more sympathy cards than ever.  I guess it is an unavoidable sign of aging.  So today I've got a card that makes a perfect expression of sympathy to send to someone who is grieving.  It is clean and simple and strikes the right balance between too cheerful and too gloomy.  Here it is....

The base of the card is Very Vanilla and the focal panel and sentiment are also stamped on Very Vanilla.  The other colors are Cajun Craze, Crumb Cake, and Always Artichoke.  The stamp set is Love and Sympathy and can be found on page 76 of the big catalog.  I colored directly on the stamp with my Cajun Craze and Always Artichoke markers (p. 179).  The sentiment was stamped in Early Espresso (p. 180) and punched out with the Extra Large Oval punch, (p. 212).  To give a little extra interest, the Cajun Craze panel was embossed with the Stripes embossing folder (p. 218).  The lack of ribbon, brads, or other embellishments make this card easy to mail. And since these types of cards are usually mailed, rather than hand-delivered, it just makes sense to leave off all the knots, lumps, and bumps that embellishments cause.  That way, your card will arrive in an envelope that is intact, instead of one that is a sad-looking ripped and torn mess.

Thanks for stopping by today, stamping people!  Please come back on Monday when I'll have another classic card to inspire you.  Meanwhile, enjoy the weekend and don't forget to take a little time out just for you to stamp and just enjoy being creative.


Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Better Late than Never

Hello Stampers and Happy Wednesday!

I'm sorry I'm very late in posting this today, but I had an early start this morning running around doing lots of other things and wasn't able to sit down at the computer until this afternoon.  But never fear, I'm here and I have a great card for you today.  Well, I like it and I hope you will too.  Since I'm leaving in a couple of hours to drive to a meeting with other Stampin'Up! demonstrators, I'll just cut to the chase and show you my card right now.

Side note to my readers...
I'm looking forward to having my son-in-law, the photography expert, help me figure out what is wrong with  the software for my digital camera.  Apparently, having this yellow cast to photos is quite common with Canon cameras.  It is fixable, I'm sure, but I wouldn't know how to go about doing that.  I'm hoping he can help me figure it out and fix it when they are here over the Thanksgiving holiday.

The colors I used on this card are River Rock (for the base layer and the panel behind the focal panel), Elegant Eggplant, Old Olive, and Watercolor paper for the stamped focal panel.  I used the new Houndstooth embossing folder (p. 218) to add texture and interest to the Elegant Eggplant layer. The stamps are from the classic Nature's Pace stamp set (p. 129).  I stamped the grapes on the Watercolor paper (p. 181) with Staz-On Jet Black ink (p. 203), then colored them in with Watercolor Wonder Crayons (p. 202) and a blender pen (p. 203).  To add a bit more age to the piece, I sponged the edges in Early Espresso and spritzed some  Early Espresso ink dots on it with the Color Spritzer Tool (p. 203) and an Early Espresso marker (p. 180).

To align the Mini Brads (p. 199), I used the Mat Pack (p. 207) and the Paper Piercing Tool (also p. 207).
Please, please, please invest 9.95 in the Mat Pack so that all of your brads will stand at attention in a straight line.  I don't think anything looks worse than brads that are supposed to be in a line, but are wandering all over the card.  It is such a sad look, and so easily avoided!  Some linen thread tied around the panel finishes off the card and adds to the rustic look.  The sentiment  (another Ralph Waldo Emerson quote) is from the Nature's Pace set as well.

Thanks for stopping by!  I hope I have inspired you to stamp something pretty today.  Meet me back here on Thursday for more ideas for classic cards.

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

More Sunshine on the Way???

Hello stampers and happy Tuesday!

Wasn't yesterday a beautiful day?  I hope you enjoyed that warm and wonderful sunshine while it lasted!  I got to sit on the porch yesterday afternoon in the bright sunshine and it was almost hot, so I was glad I had a cold glass of Diet Rite Cola, my favorite.  I wouldn't normally take time out of a busy Monday to sit on the porch, but I felt I needed to take advantage of the beautiful day and just absorb some sunshine.  I'm hoping we'll have more of the same today and maybe a few other days this week as well.  I can dream, can't I?

In celebration of yesterday's sunshine, I've got a card today with the sentiment "Live in the sunshine," a Ralph Waldo Emerson quote.  The set is a big favorite of mine called Field Flowers (p. 120).  I've used this set a lot and I'm sure I will continue using it.  If you don't own it yet, you might want to click on the "order now" button at the top of my blog so you can start playing with it!
Check it out...

This is an easel card in a slightly different size.  The folded base that makes the easel is a strip of cardstock 3 1/4  inches wide by 11 inches long.  Score it cross-wise at 3 1/2 and 6 3/8.  Fold into a Z shape and that will be the base of your easel card.  If you'd like all the measurements for this card, please send me a quick email and I'll send you the complete directions. 

The card stock colors I used on this card are Old Olive, Rich Razzleberry, and Whisper White.  The flowers were stamped first in Calypso Coral and then overstamped with Rich Razzleberry.  Some Rich Razzleberry grosgrain ribbon makes the perfect accent. 

I'm off to babysit for my 8 week old granddaughter today, so I've got to run. Thanks for stopping by today my stamping friends!  Meet me back here tomorrow for more stamping inspiration and another classic card.


Monday, October 24, 2011

A Flower for all Seasons

Hi everyone and welcome back to my blog!

I hope you had a good weekend and enjoyed the amazing fall colors that are showing up as the trees put on their prettiest "clothing."  I drove out to Hillsboro yesterday and even though the day was cloudy, those reds and golds really lit up the landscape!  Our huge red maples haven't dropped yet, but once they do my attitude toward those gorgeous leaves might change a bit as I'll be out there raking daily.  But for now, I'm just enjoying the fall season.

I've been busy designing fall cards and Christmas cards for upcoming workshops, but today's card features a stamp set for all seasons... the wonderful Build a Blossom set (p. 112).  You can vary the look of this set by simply changing the colors of the petals and leaves. Of course the color of the background that you place it on can change the look significantly as well.  Check it out...

A few of you might recognize this card, as it was one we made when this set first came out.  The colors here are Whisper White on the base of the card, which was cut with the Scallop Square die for the Big Shot ( p.223) and embossed with the Perfect Polka Dots embossing folder (p. 219).  The ink on the petals is Daffodil Delight and the green I used for the center of the flower and the card stock accents is Certainly Celery. The petals were punched out with the Blossom Petals Builder Punch (p. 213). The sentiment is from the Teeny Tiny Wishes set (p. 157) that can always be counted on when you need a small greeting to fit into a circle or oval.  The tiny oval punch shown here is no longer in the catalog, but the Large Oval Punch, (p. 212) layered on top of the Scallop Oval Punch ( p. 210) would work perfectly as well.  So while this card says spring, you could make it more like fall by using More Mustard ink on More Mustard card stock with an Early Espresso center, or even use a darker color like Cajun Craze.  The possibilities are endless with this set!

If you have this set in your collection, you might want to try creating a poinsettia with it.  Use the pointy petals and stamp them in Real Red on Real Red card stock.  Then punch out a bunch and layer them up.  I've seen this done somewhere ( I really should write these things down) and it makes a beautiful poinsettia, although I wouldn't suggest using this idea for your Christmas cards.  You might go crazy with stamping and punching and gluing all those petals.  Perhaps it would be fun for one or two special cards, but I don't want to be responsible for any stamping meltdowns!

Thanks for stopping by today!  Make it a great Monday and I'll see you back here tomorrow for another classic card. 

Friday, October 21, 2011

Easy Breezy

A happy fall Friday to you, stampers!  Thanks for coming back to see what I have for you today!

It's a breezy fall day out there, but at least it's not raining (yet!).  The birch tree just outside my window is a beautiful shade of gold and I wish those leaves could cling for a while.  Unfortunately, they are falling like crazy and that means only one thing.... I'll soon be outside in the breezy fall day with a rake in my hand.  I do love the gorgeous colors of autumn... who doesn't?  However, I think those gorgeous colors are even more amazing with a backdrop of blue, blue sky (big sigh).  We sure haven't seen much of that lately, have we? 
But carry on we must, through gray and drizzle and whatever else mother nature has in store for us. 

Today's card is a little something different again, like yesterday's, for those of us who are easily bored and looking for something other than an ordinary 5 1/2 by 4 1/4 card.  Here it is...

This little gem is a 4 x 4 card.  You know, the one the US Postal Service likes to charge more for, if you mail it in a square envelope.  You can get around that, though, by just mailing your square card in a regular envelope.  I wouldn't suggest mailing this one, however, as the fabric ribbon makes quite a bulky knot when tied.  I would suggest hand-delivering this to the recipient.  If you must mail it, then a padded envelope (p. 182) would be the best way to go.

The colors here are Cherry Cobbler, Always Artichoke and Very Vanilla.  I just love that color combination for Christmas... so rich and classic.  The base of the card is Very Vanilla and the Cherry Cobbler and Always Artichoke panels are layered on top.  Inside, there's a little pocket that holds a gift card or cash.
I'm sure just about everyone on your guest list would like receiving one of these with a little surprise tucked inside.

The stamps are from the fabulous Tags til Christmas set (page 32).  This set of 9 tag stamps will keep you in Christmas tags for years and it's priced at only $22.95 for 9 stamps.  That's 2.55 per stamp, people!  What a great bargain for stamps.  And these are no ordinary stamps, as all of them have punches to match.   If this set is not already in your collection, you'll want to add it to an order very soon.

The December 25th stamp is punched out with the Decorative Label punch (p. 209) and then I added some of the beautiful Glass Stampin' Glitter ( p. 201).  This chunky glitter gives a vintage look and is so easy to apply.  I just went around the oval with Crystal Effects (p. 206), sprinkled it with the glitter, and set it aside to dry.  Crystal Effects not only gives a shiny look to leaves, flowers, and other stamped images.  It is also a powerful adhesive and it works great in an application like this.  The Very Vanilla panel behind the focal point is embossed with the lovely Finial Press embossing folder (p. 219). 

Tying the card closed is a strip of Deck the Halls Designer fabric (p. 196).  These beautiful fabrics come in an extra large "fat quarter" size.  I'm not a quilter.  I admit that I don't have the patience for a long-term project like that, so I don't really know what the term "fat quarter" means.   The actual dimensions of the fabric that you get from Stampin'Up! is 27" by 18".  The great thing about Stampin'Up!'s fabric is that it matches our designer papers, buttons, card stock and everything else, which makes color coordination so very easy.  Making ribbon from this fabric is easy too, just tear it into strips or cut it with pinking shears and you've got tons of "ribbon" to add color and dimension to your cards and paper-crafting projects. 

OK stampers!  That's my easy, but different, card for Friday. Thanks for stopping by today!  Enjoy this beautiful breezy fall day while it is still dry outside.  I hope you'll all enjoy the weekend ahead and that you'll have time to stamp something pretty.  Meet me back here on Monday for another classic card.


Thursday, October 20, 2011

A Change of Pace

Hello there!  Welcome to Thursday's blog post!

Are you one of those people who are easily bored?  Are you always looking for something new... whether it's a new restaurant, new recipe, new place to visit, or maybe just a new card design?  I have to admit that I get very tired of the standard card format of a 5 1/2 by 4 1/4 folded card that opens on the left.  So when I find a different fold, different size, or something that varies a bit from the "same old, same old" card format, I'm one happy stamper!

And today I have a great card for you that will provide a refreshing change of pace.  Check it out---

This fun design folds out when you pull down on the point at the bottom. It opens out to reveal the center panel which is glued to the base.  This panel is stamped with the greeting.  We've made this type of card at some of my events in the past and I'm thinking I need to include this design in one of my upcoming classes or parties.  The theme can be varied to suit the occasion, but I especially like this format for children's birthday cards. 

The base of this card starts off with the Scalloped Square (p. 223, cut with the Big Shot) in Early Espresso card stock (p. 180). The folded layer on top is Crumb Cake card stock (p. 180)  stamped randomly in Cherry Cobbler ink (p. 179) with the medallion from the Artistic Etchings stamp set (p. 129).  The focal point is Very Vanilla card stock (p. 180) stamped with the En Francais background stamp (p. 151) in Crumb Cake ink (p. 180), then overstamped with images from the Artistic Etchings set (p. 129).  The Eiffel Tower is stamped in Early Espresso ink (p. 180) and the medallion image is stamped in Cherry Cobbler (p. 179).The focal panel is layered onto a panel of Cherry Cobbler card stock (p. 179) and is accented with a bit of Early Espresso grosgrain ribbon (p. 195).

So there you have it stampers, a fun card that is different from the usual to help relieve a case of stamper's boredom!  If you would like the directions for creating this folded masterpiece, please send me an email at and I will email you the instructions. 

Thanks for stopping in today and I'll see you back here tomorrow (Yay for Friday!) for another classic card.

Have a great sunny Thursday!

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Tea Time

Happy Wednesday, stamping friends, and welcome back to my blog.  I wish you could come in and join me for a nice hot cup of tea on a blustery fall day.  It would warm us inside and out as we chatted about stamping and our latest creations. 

On a recent trip to the grocery store, I shopped the tea aisle and stocked up on some of my favorite teas, like Constant Comment (orange spice), Earl Grey (bergamot), and Sleepy Time Extra (with camomile and valerian to help me get to sleep on the nights when the sandman just can't seem to find me).  With our weather taking a turn for the worse, this might be a good time to stock up on tea for your household as well.  There's nothing like a comforting cup of hot tea in the afternoon to take the rough edges off the day.  If you invite a friend to stop by and join you, you'll have a spot of brightness in what might have been a lackluster day.

Speaking of tea, Stampin'Up! is coming out with a new product suite called Tea Shoppe and you'll be able to see it in January, when the new Occasions Mini-catalog comes out.  I've seen some sneak peeks of it and you will LOVE it.  Meanwhile, we have the cute Morning Cup (p.54) set to play with.  Today's card is a "girly" card featuring this same set.  Unlike yesterday's manly card with the hairy fibers, this one is accented with lace and feminine!  We made both of these cards at a recent "Coffeehouse Crafternoon" at Symposium Coffee here in Sherwood Oregon.  We had a nice room upstairs all to ourselves and sipped our lattes while we created.  We had a great time just relaxing and creating.  If you'd like to join us next time, watch your email inbox.  I'll be doing another one soon.  Here is today's card:

Again, I used the Mocha Morning Specialty paper (p. 183), but this time a flowery design instead of the stripes I used on the manly card. The base of the card is Very Vanilla card stock (p. 180).  The Two Tags Die (p. 222) was used again to cut the bookmark in Crumb Cake card stock (p. 180).  I used Crumb Cake taffeta ribbon (p. 195) and the Chantilly crochet trim (p. 194) for the top.

 I know you have a friend who would love to receive this card in the mail.  Then she'll be able to remove the bookmark and every time she uses it, she'll think of you... her "tea-riffic" friend.  To make the card even more fun, you could tuck a tea bag inside (use a glue dot on the back of the wrapper).  If you wanted to make this into a gift card holder, you could  make a little pocket by gluing a strip of cardstock inside at the bottom of the card and sliding the gift card into it.  There are lots of possibilities with this stamp set!

Have a great Wednesday everyone!  Hope you can take time for a "spot of tea" as the British say and I hope you'll come back tomorrow to see what I have in store to spark your imagination.


Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Wake Up and Drink the Coffee

Hello stampers and welcome to my Tuesday blog!

Are you a coffee lover?  If so, you have a lot of company here in the great Northwest, where sometimes coffee is the only thing that keeps us moving through day after day of gray skies, rain, and chilly weather.  I do love my coffee, but I hate to admit that most of the time I'm a wimp and order decaf.  I've found that even one cup of real coffee after lunchtime can keep me awake most of the night.  Not fun.  Back in the day, I could drink coffee with the best of them, with no ill effects.  It must be old age setting in. 

Today's card features the fun set Morning Cup.  Check it out....

You can find the Morning Cup set on page 54 of the big catalog.  If you don't already own this cute set, you might want to add it to your next order, as it can be used to make all sorts of fun coffee and tea cards.  This set would also be perfect to use when making gift card holders.  What a great way to give a Starbucks card to a friend! Who wouldn't love getting a fun card  like this, with a removeable bookmark on the front?  This card was designed to be a "manly" card, but I think anyone would like it.  The bookmark is cut from Crumb Cake card stock with the Two Tags die for the Big Shot.  (page 222).  It is adhered to the card with a tiny bit of adhesive, so that it can be removed easily. The base of the card is made with Crumb Cake card stock as well.  The handsome striped designer paper is from the Mocha Morning specialty collection, found on page 183 of the big catalog.  This great collection features some beautiful flocked papers as well as regular printed designs.  You'll be able to make some striking cards if you have this paper in your stash. And yes, I admit that the fibers on the top of the bookmark are not Stampin'Up!  But for this card, I wanted something more masculine and I think the hairy looking fibers give it that "man card" look I was going after.

It looks like it's going to be a beautiful fall day out there, so I hope you'll make some time to get outside and enjoy the sunshine!  Meet me back here tomorrow for another classic card.
Thanks for stopping by!

Monday, October 17, 2011

Blooming Happiness

Hello Stampers and welcome back to my blog!

Sorry for the break in blogging, but in an effort to achieve balance in my life, sometimes I have to let stamping take a back seat. Hopefully, this will be a week of uninterrupted blogging, as I have nothing on my calendar that will keep me away from my computer. 

Yesterday I was able to get out in the garden for a few minutes and I took the time to cut some flowers from my very small (and quite bedraggled-looking) raised beds where I scattered some miscellaneous flower seeds last spring.  I think the container said "Cottage Garden" or something like that.  Anyway, the cosmos are still blooming, along with some daisy-like flowers that I don't know the name of and I was able to pick quite a pretty bouquet.  I thought that was pretty amazing for mid-October.  As I was cutting the flowers, I was reminded how much I love them and how much happiness flowers bring into our lives. I wish I had flowers all year, but my yard will soon be bare. Soon the only flowers I'll have will be from the store.  Even if I can't always treat myself to a big bouquet, I can always pick up a few to remind myself that somewhere, flowers are in bloom.

Of course you must have figured out by now that today's card has something to do with my love of flowers.  If you looked into the cupboards where I store my stamps, you would discover that flowers are well-represented there.  I don't think I'll ever have enough flowery stamp sets... I just keep collecting them !

Here's the card....

The colors on today's card are Tangerine Tango, More Mustard, Old Olive, and Chocolate Chip and I love the way these colors combine to make a card that has a fall flavor.  The stamp set is Fabulous Florets (page 107).  This great set was in the Summer Mini-catalog and I'm so happy it crossed over into the big catalog.
The sentiment "the earth laughs in flowers" ( e.e. cummings) is perfect on this card.  If you need some quick cards, this set makes quick stamping a breeze!  Just pick out some coordinating colors and stamp up a beautiful collage of flowers.  Then all you have to do to finish is to add the sentiment of your choice to the center (it could be a birthday, sympathy, wedding, congratulations, or just about any other kind of card)  and you'll be finished in just minutes.  Don't forget to show the envelope a little love as well by stamping on the corner and/or the back flap.  I love a clean and classic card like this--- no extensive layering, no embellishments to worry about when mailing it, and no time-consuming assembly--- but it is still a pretty card that you can be proud of sending to brighten someone's day. 

Thanks for stopping by today.  Have a great Monday and a great week!
Happy stamping!


Wednesday, October 12, 2011

A Little Birdy Told Me...

Hey there, stampers!  Welcome back!

A little birdy told me that Christmas is just around the corner.  No need to panic, though, but there is reason to start thinking about it, planning for it, and thinking about ways you can simplify the Christmas season for yourself so that you have time to enjoy it.  In years past, the holidays from Thanksgiving to New Years were a blur for me.  I had so many lists (Christmas card list, shopping lists, grocery lists, decorating lists, guest lists) that I almost needed a list of my lists.  Now that I'm retired there's the temptation to continue to go "all out" during the holidays, but I'm making a real effort to resist that temptation, and I hope I can persuade you to join me in a simpler, saner holiday season.

One way to start simplifying is to pick a simple design for your cards this year.  If you're at all like me, you might want to make stamping your cards into some type of competitive event, with a fabulous design, lots of layers, heat-embossing, lots of embellishments, etc.  But really, the whole point of sending a Christmas card is to reconnect with friends near and far and convey to them that you are thinking of them and sending good wishes to them.  And when you consider that your efforts might be appreciated for a few minutes, displayed for a couple of weeks, and then recycled... it really doesn't make a lot of sense to work yourself into a frenzy over them.

Here's a pretty card that has a great classic look that you can easily make in quantity. 

I've used my favorite Christmas color combination on this card--- Whisper White, Cherry Cobbler, and Old Olive.  The stamp set is Language of Friendship (page 101).  In clear-mount, this stamp set sells for a mere $11.95.  The coordinating punch, Bird Builder Punch is on page 213.  This little bird looks great in Cherry Cobbler for Christmas, but he'd look great in blue for a spring card or yellow for a summer card, making this a very versatile set. The punched circle is from a new die for the Big Shot called Perfect Pennants (page 221).  I made the "ribbon" from Old Olive card stock and embossed it with the new Snow Burst die that's in the Holiday-Mini catalog at the bottom of page 33.  The sentiment "welcome Christmas into your heart" is from the set Heard from the Heart (page 167).  The only ink you'll need for this card is a Basic Black stamp pad (page 180). 

Should you want to order the supplies to make this card, give me a call and I'll get everything ordered for you.  You can also shop 24/7 at my Stampin'Up! site which you can find at

Thanks for stopping by today.  I'm sorry that I won't have a post for you on Thursday, but the grandchildren are coming for a visit and I know I won't have time to blog.  But I'll be back soon with more stamping fun.
Have a great Wednesday!

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Easy Sophistication

Hello Stampers! 

Today I've got a card for you that is classic and sophisticated, AND super-easy!  Sometimes you just need a quick card and this one fits the bill.  It features one of my favorite color combinations--- Basic Black and Whisper White.  It is hard to go wrong when using these two together.  You can also add just a pop of color in an embellishment--- say some Cherry Cobbler, Elegant Eggplant, More Mustard---to give your card a bit more "oomph," but on this card I don't think that's necessary.

Here's the card

The stamp set is Simply Soft (page 12) which is one of the amazing hostess sets you can receive FREE when you host a stamping party.  This is a two-step set, which means each flower has two parts.  First you stamp the outline, then you fill in with the solid stamp. This two-step process produces a great image and is fun to do.  And the clear stamps let you line up your images so much easier. The ribbon is found on page 195 and adds such a lovely touch.  I tied some white baker's twine (page 194) around the ribbon to scrunch it up, then threaded the twine up through one of our buttons (page 197) and tied it in a bow. With a variation in the sentiment, this could easily be a  birthday card, wedding card, sympathy card, thank you card, anniversary card, congratulations card, or just about anything.  In fact, it would be a great idea to stamp up some cards like this in advance, but leave the sentiment off.  Then when you're in need of a card to send off quickly, you can add the appropriate sentiment and your card will be mailbox-ready. 

I hope you'll take a little time today to stamp some all-purpose cards like this.  You'll feel so organized and on-top of things when you have a little stash of cards, all ready to send at a moment's notice. 

Thanks for stopping by today and be sure to come and visit me tomorrow.  I've got more classic cards coming up for your viewing and stamping pleasure.
Enjoy your Tuesday!


Monday, October 10, 2011

Rainy Days and Mondays

Hello stamping friends!  Welcome to another week of my blog.

I know I'm old, you know I'm old, (maybe you're old too), so there's no sense in pretending that I've never heard of the Carpenters or the song "Rainy Days and Mondays."  As I gaze out my stamp room window, I can't help but think of that song.  Yes, it is raining and yes, it is Monday, but I'm not going to let those two facts get me down.  I'm just going to turn all the lights on and stamp away the gloom.  If you have the chance, I suggest that you do the same.  We can stamp up some cheerful cards with happy colors and I'm sure we'll all feel better for it!

I'm off to babysit the newest grandchild this morning, little Allie, who is just 5 weeks old, so this will be a rather short post.  But before I go, I've got a card for you.  I can't say this is over the top bright and cheerful, but it is pretty, in a vintage-y way.

The colors here are Very Vanilla, Crumb Cake and Soft Suede.  The base of the card is embossed with the Framed Tulips embossing folder (page 218).  Then the stamped panel is layered on top.  It is stamped with the large Hello Doily background stamp (page 150) in Crumb Cake.  Then the flowers (Field Flowers, page 120) are stamped over the doily with Soft Suede.  The sentiment is from Petite Pairs ( page 164).  Some Crumb Cake taffeta ribbon (page 195) adds a pretty touch.  The two punches I used for the sentiment (large oval and scalloped oval) can be found on pages 212 and 210 of the big catalog. 

This card is a CASE (stands for Copy And Steal Everything) of a card I saw elsewhere.  I'm not really sure who the original creator was, but if I knew, I'd give them credit.  I tweaked the colors and added the sentiment.  That being said, there are a LOT of cards out there with this same idea... the doily background with something stamped over it.  Why not get out your stamps and ink and create your own version of this card?  It would make a great birthday, thank you, thinking of you, or sympathy card. 

Make it a great rainy Monday!  Thanks for stopping in and I'll see you back here tomorrow for more stamping chat and ideas. 

Friday, October 7, 2011

Finally Friday!

Welcome back to my blog and welcome to Friday!

I'm sure that Friday is the most longed-for day of the week, and with good reason.  Even for those of us who are retired, Friday signals the start of the weekend and the fun and activities that weekends bring.  Speaking of fun activities... I have one for you!  You are invited to join a great group of stampers this Sunday at my house for some Christmas card-making fun.  You'll make two great cards (I'll show you one of them shortly), and you'll also have time to pick out a design for your Christmas cards so you can get started on them early this year.  Then on October 30th, we'll gather again for a work session where you'll cut, stamp, and start assembling your cards. At this session, you'll be able to use all of my tools, such as paper cutter, Big Shot, Big Shot dies, puches... the works!  I will jump in and help you if you'd like so it will go more quickly.  Cost for the two classes is only $15 total.  That works out to $7.50 per session.  That is a great bargain, stampers!

Here is one of the cards you'll make:

The colors on this beauty are Very Vanilla, Cherry Cobbler, and Always Artichoke, making for a rich and classic card.  I'll show you a fun technique where you'll ink the raised portion of the Vintage Wallpaper embossing folder, then run it through the Big Shot to produce this awesome background.  This would be a quick card to create in quantity, as there isn't a lot of stamping... just stamp three times and you're done!  The greeting is punched out, so that is quick and simple too.  The stamp set is Welcome Christmas and can be found on page 36 of the "big" catalog.  The sentiment "Joy at Christmas" is from the stamp set Perfect Punches, which is on page 140 of the catalog.  It is punched out with the 1 3/4" Scallop Circle Punch and the 1 3/8" Circle Punch (punches are on pages 210-213). Add a bit of Cherry Cobbler seam binding, found on page 195 and you have a card you'd be proud to send!

Enjoy the weekend stampers!  I hope you'll make time to stamp something pretty!  If you'd like to join me for the Countdown to Christmas class this Sunday, please email me at  I've got a couple of spots left!

Thanks for stopping by today and I'll see you back here on Monday for some new card ideas.

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Pear-fect for Fall

Happy Thursday, everyone! 
The weekend is almost here!  Time for you to relax, wind down, and enjoy some fun.  For me, the weekend means party, party, party... as in stamping parties.  What a great job I have!  Every time I go to work, I end up at a party!  Has the thought crossed your mind that being a Stampin'Up! demonstrator would be fun?  If so, now is the time to seriously consider joining.  During October, you get an extra $100 in product or a free Big Shot when you join.  Email me if you are interested in hearing more

Have you ever thought of sending out just a few Thanksgiving cards to a few special people, just to let them know you are thankful to have them in your life?  Expressing gratitude should be something we do year-round, not just at Thanksgiving,  but Thanksgiving is a perfect excuse to let close family and friends know how much you love and appreciate them.  And today, I have just the "pear-fect" card for doing that,  Take a look...

This elegant card uses the hostess-only stamp set "Faith in Nature."  You can easily get this set free when you hold your own stamping party.  The colors used here are Very Vanilla (card base), Cajun Craze (main panel), Always Artichoke (embossed panel), So Saffron (horizontal strip).  The focal image is stamped on watercolor paper( page 181) in Jet Black Staz-on ink (page 203) and colored with Watercolor Wonder Crayons ( page 202) and a blender pen (page 203). The sentiment "Happy Thanksgiving" is from the stamp set Teeny Tiny Wishes (page 157).  The Watercolor Wonder crayons are so quick and easy to use... even an amateur can achieve very artistic results.  Anyone who know me knows that I'm no artist!  I can't even draw a decent-looking stick figure.  But with my stamps, ink, and paper I can soar to artistic heights I never imagined.  That's what so great about stamping.

Thanks for stopping by today, stampers!  I hope I've inspired you to make just a few special Thanksgiving cards.  Please meet me back here tomorrow for more stamping fun and inspiration.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Hello again!

Hello stamping friends!

 I'm hoping today finds you happy and busy and doing whatever it is you do on Wednesdays. I'll soon be putting on my exercising clothes and heading off to Curves, right after I finish this post.  I find that if I exercise in the morning, I have more energy all day long.  I hate to admit it, but I guess the rainy season is really here to stay.  We've had rain for so many days in a row that I finally gave in and had John bring in the patio furniture.  I was hoping for one more chance to eat outside, but I've given up on that idea now.  Also, yesterday evening was the first time we turned on our heat in months.  So it must be true... summer is really over :(

Thankfully, we've got a lot of fun holidays to be making cards and gifts for, so I'm hoping that will distract me from the less than gorgeous weather.  I've been designing cards like crazy for the past few days and I've got lots of new things to show you in the days ahead.  But before we move on, I've got one more card for you featuring the Hello Friend set that I showed you yesterday.  Here it is...

This is a Z fold card and is very easy to make.  The colors are Whisper White, Pacific Point, and Pool Party. The cute ruffly ribbon (page 194) is also in Pool Party.  If you'd like the directions for the Z-fold card, just drop me a quick email at and I'll email them to you. 

I'm assuming that my customers are the only readers of my blog at this point, but if there's anyone out there who doesn't have a demonstrator, I would love to have you join my group of happy customers.  I offer lots of stamping events for your entertainment and stamping pleasure and I've got tons of ideas to share with you.
My contact information is shown on the blog header.  If you'll email me, I'll send you a newsletter with all of my upcoming events listed. 

Thanks for stopping by today and I hope you'll be back tomorrow for more stamping inspiration.

Have a happy Wednesday!

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Hello, Friend!

Hello there and thanks for stopping by today!

 A glance out the window of my stamp room shows another gray day... (big sigh!)  I've got plenty of work to do today, so I can't dwell on the weather for too long.  While I'm stamping and cutting and creating, I'm going to suggest that you take advantage of the gloomy weather as well and make a few cards today to send to some friends you may not have talked to in a while.  Yes, email and facebook are great for a quick way to communicate, but nothing will ever take the place of a hand-written card or letter that can be tucked away and read again and again. 

Here's a card that you can send for no particular reason... a card just to let your friends know that they are in your thoughts.  In some ways, the card sent for a non-occasion has more impact than a birthday, anniversary, or holiday card.  People expect to get a card on their birthday, so it is not a big deal to get one.  But an unexpected card can bring a jolt of happiness to the recipient.  And we all know that everyone could use a jolt of happiness now and again, so spread some happiness around!

This quick and easy card features the new stamp set My Friend, found on page 139 of the big catalog.  The colors are Concord Crush for the background panel and Pear Pizzazz for the vertical card stock piece that is layered under it.  The base of the card is Whisper White.  Some Concord Crush ribbon (page 194) and a Basic Rhinestone (page 198) at the end of the culicue on "hello"  add a touch of elegance.  This card would look great in many different color combinations.  Get out your Color Coach (page 174) and come up with your own great colors.

I'm sure you can think of a friend or two that would love to hear from you.  It will only take a few minutes of your time to send a ripple of happiness into the world.  If you'd like to increase the size of that ripple, try this:
write your note to your friend on a post-it note ( one of the larger size ones) and stick it on the inside instead of writing directly on the card.  Then your friend can send it on to one of their friends and so on.  Who knows how many people will get this unexpected but happy surprise in their mailbox?! 

OK, enough talking.  Let's go get started on our stamping! Thanks for stopping by today,  and don't forget to come back tomorrow for another stamping idea.
Happy stamping!

Monday, October 3, 2011

Let's get started!

Hello stamping friends!

Welcome back to my blog!  Sorry I have been absent for a few days, but the visit to Seattle to see the grandchildren was great.   We had sunny weather the whole time, which was a true gift! Well, September sure flew by, didn't it?  And now we are into October... time to start thinking seriously about the upcoming holiday season.  In order to make this your most relaxed holiday season ever, I'm going to try to help you finish your Christmas cards by early November this year.  Wouldn't it be nice to have those fabulous hand-stamped cards all done way ahead of time?  Think of how organized you'll feel, knowing that they are ready to be mailed. Then you'll be able to concentrate on all the other things you need to do, like shopping, decorating, and baking!

In order to accomplish this feat, all you need to do is get started NOW!  Next Sunday, October 9th at 1:30 pm, I'm offering you the opportunity to come over to my house for the first Countdown to Christmas class. At this class you'll decide on a stamp set, colors, and design for your card.  You'll also get to make two great cards and enjoy some delicious treats.  Then, on Sunday October 30th at 1:30 pm, you'll cut your paper, stamp, and begin assembling your cards.  At this class you'll have the chance to use all of my tools, including the Big Shot, my Big Shot dies, embossing folders, punches, etc... everything you may not own. 
These classes are a real bargain at just $15 total, or free with a $50 purchase.  Email me soon to reserve your spot.

To get you in the proper mood for starting your cards early, I have a Christmas card for you today.  Check it out.....

This fun card features the new Stitched Stockings stamp set that is found in the Holiday Mini-catalog, as well as the Stocking Builder Punch that is featured there also.  The colors are Lucky Limeaid, Crumb Cake, and Cherry Cobbler.  The elegant greeting is from the new set Hand-Penned Holidays, also in the Holiday Mini.
The Cherry Cobbler baker's twine adds a fun touch. The textured background was made with a new embossing folder, Snowburst. 

Thanks for stopping by today and be sure to come back tomorrow for more stamping inspiration!