Friday, January 29, 2016

A Nice Cuppa

Hello there!

Are you a fan of tea?  Do you start your day with a strong cup of tea with cream or milk in it?  Just the thought of milk in tea almost causes my blood to curdle, but I know that true tea-lovers often like it that way.  So, while I like tea, I'm not an avid tea-drinker.  But for all of you who love, love, love tea, tea-time treats, scones, crumpets, clotted cream, tarts, and the whole afternoon tea shebang, there's a new Stampin'Up! set that is calling your name from page 35 in the Occasions catalog.

It's called "A Nice Cuppa" and the images in the set are great! What's even better is that there is a set of coordinating dies, plus
some darling silver embellishments (a teaspoon, a lemon slice, and a tea pot) AND coordinating designer series paper... everything you need to create an amazing card is right there!

Here's bright and cheerful card I made with these fun supplies...

.  The colors I chose to use were taken directly from the designer paper... Bermuda Bay and Melon Mambo.  The card base is Whisper White, with a panel of Bermuda Bay added on top.  The designer paper panel is 5 inches by 2  1/2 inches.  I wrapped the card front with Melon Mambo cotton ribbon before adhering it to the card base.  The inside sentiment says "and spending time with you." 

I'm pretty sure that someone you know would love to get a sweet card like this.  Why not plan a tea party for a few good friends?
It wouldn't take that much work and what a fun afternoon you'd have!  Make a couple of pots of tea, get out some pretty cups, make or purchase some cookies, cupcakes, or other treats and spend an afternoon catching up with friends.  What could be better than that?  I hope I've inspired you to reach out to friends you haven't seen for a while.
Life is short, time goes by too quickly, and none of us spend enough time having fun with friends.  Pinkies up!

Here's to hugs and happiness and tea parties!

Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Hello there Bear Hugs!

Hey there stampers!

Have you purchased the new  Bear Hugs stamp set and framelits on page 40 of the
Occasions catalog?  At first glance you might think that it's a set just for the kiddos
 in your life, but nothing could be further from the truth.  This is one of those
 super-versatile sets that can be used for so many occasions.... Valentine's Day,
Mother's Day, Father's Day, new baby, and then a year-round "love you."' I'm having
fun with it right now making Valentines.

The framelits are on the Weekly Deals this week for $20.25 ( regular price is $27, so
they're 25% off), but it's still a better deal to buy both the stamp set and the framelits
together in a bundle for $41.50.  If you got the stamps, but not the framelits, then
getting the framelits for 25% off this week is definitely a very good deal!

Well, after all this talk about Bear Hugs, I suppose you'd like to see a card.  Luckily,
I have one to show you...

Isn't he cute?  This is one of the cards we made last Sunday at the Great Eight card design
class.    The card base is Crumb Cake, as is the oval that the bear is on.  The textured panel
is Soft Suede, as is Mr. Bear. The heart and panel behind the DSP is Cherry Cobbler and
that fun dotted designer paper is from the Farmer's Market collection of DSP on page 143
of the annual catalog. 

Don't know what the weather has in store for us today, but hope all is sunny and happy
in your world!
Bear Hugs,

Monday, January 25, 2016

Botanical Gardens Suite

Hello Stampers!

We are supposed to enjoy a day without rain today, just like yesterday only with a bit more sun.  I'm hoping that actually happens!  I recently got a new pair of sunglasses and I haven't had an occasion to use them yet, so maybe today's the day when I'll need to wear them... one can hope!

The new product suite called Botanical Gardens ( pages 26-27 of the Occasions catalog) uses some rather unconventional colors in the coordinating designer paper... Basic Black, Cajun Craze, Hello Honey, and Mossy Meadow all seem more suitable for fall than for spring. However, there are a couple of designs in the package that are quite perfect for spring and I used one of them to give this card a fresh spring-y look.

The predominate color here is the lovely Mint Macaron... which is a minty green with a blue cast to it.  I love how fresh and clean this  looks!  I used some Hello Honey for the three-layered flower, which I cut with the Botanical Builder dies. If you click on the card to make it larger, you can see that the centers of the tiny flowers in the DSP are Hello Honey, so naturally I chose to repeat that color with the flower and one of the background panels.

 That curvy-curly "thanks" is from the Cottage Greetings stamp set on page 94 of the big catalog. I'm really quite picky about fonts... some I love, some I cannot stand.  With me, there's not much middle ground when it comes to fonts, but this one is one of my favorites. 

As always, I sincerely hope that your week is off to a smooth and happy start.  Unfortunately, no one has figured out how to put a day on rewind so we can start over.  If you are having "one of those days," just do the best you can with what you've got.  That's all anyone can expect from you.  Oh, and while you're at it, be kinder than is required, not only to yourself but to everyone.  Kindness is important and there's not enough of it going around these days.

I hope you've enjoyed the card and that you'll come back on Wednesday to see what I've dreamed up.

Hugs and happiness,

Friday, January 22, 2016

A Girly Valentine with Love Blossoms DSP

Hello dear blog readers!

Well, we've finally arrived at Friday and I was seriously considering showing you another Flowering Fields card.  But then I thought you might not appreciate a whole week of nothing but Flowering Fields, so I decided to give that set a rest and show you something entirely different.

Check out this sweet Valentine that would be perfect to send to a friend, daughter, aunt, grandmother, granddaughter.... anyone who'd appreciate a "girly" card.  The new Love Blossoms 6 x 6 paper stack has so many pretty patterns soI wanted to be able to show off more than one pattern.  I think I accomplished that with this card...

If  you are wanting a very clean and bright look, there's no better way to achieve that than with a white card base and a white background.  I embossed the background panel with the Happy Hearts embossing folder, then added a panel of Blushing Bride on top of it to serve as a base for the hearts which I punched out with the Sweetheart Punch.  The sentiment is from the Bloomin' Love stamp set that 's on page 17 of the Occasions catalog.  The Word Window punch was the perfect size to punch it out.  I wrapped the card with some Blushing Bride cotton ribbon and added a sweet bow that I made with the Bow Builder Punch.

A little cutting, a bit of embossing, and some quick punches and voila!... a pretty card to send off to make someone's day a little brighter!  We could make this card at your stamping party!  I've
got a few dates open during Sale-a-bration, so let me know if you'd like to host and earn tons of free goodies.

OK, my friends, I've got to run!  I hope you'll make some time this weekend to have some creative fun with your stamps, ink, and paper.  If you aren't attending my class this Sunday, why not call a friend or two and invite them over  for a "crafternoon?"  You could drink coffee, tea, or wine and make some fun Valentines.  Oh, and don't forget the chocolate.  Chocolate is almost mandatory when stamping.  It seems to have magical qualities and will boost your  energy and creativity.  Enjoy the weekend!
Hugs and happiness,

Wednesday, January 20, 2016

More Flowering Fields

Hey there stamping friends!

It seems a little strange to be thinking about flowering fields, but I suppose at some point this rain will stop, the sun will come out and there will once again be flowering fields.  I have a feeling that we have quite a bit more winter to get through before we can enjoy the sight of flowering fields. So, in the meantime we'll have to get a little dose of springtime from the new Stampin'Up! set Flowering Fields. It's one of the free sets you can earn with a $50 purchase.

I wanted to show you the clean and simple card we made with this set at Donna's party last Saturday morning. 

I wanted something warm and sunny, so like the card I showed you on Monday, this one features Calypso Coral.  There's something about Calypso Coral that makes me think of a tropical vacation and who couldn't use one of those about now? 

We used the Dots for Days stamp (page 129 of the big catalog) to create our own dotted background.  This is a great stamp to have because you can make great dotted paper in any color combination you can imagine.  The flower was stamped with the new archival Basic Black ink.  It is a permanent ink, so it's perfect for coloring because it won't run when it gets wet.  We used Teeny Tiny Wishes  (page 95 of the big catalog) for the sentiment and everyone got to choose their own. With 24 different sentiments to choose from, there is one for every possible occasion.  Every sentiment in the set fits with the Word Window Punch.  How easy is that?  Some Calypso Coral Thick Baker's Twine (page 158 of the big catalog) was perfect to tie on the sentiment.
Fresh, bright, and springy... just the perfect antidote to a gray, rainy, and blustery day.

Well, my friends, I've got to get back to work.  I'm in the middle of cutting all of the paper for my class on Sunday afternoon.  I'll be back on Friday with more stamping inspiration.  Try to stay dry!
Hugs and happiness,

Monday, January 18, 2016

Flowering Fields, Stampin'Up!

Hey there, stampers! 

It's Monday once again, although I'm guessing that many of you have the day off since it is Martin Luther King, Jr. Day.  Of course when you're retired like me, every Monday is a day off!

We had a great time stamping at Donna's party on Saturday and I'll share one of the cards we made on Wednesday.  Today I'm going to show you the first card I made with the free Sale-a-bration set called Flowering Fields.  It is a "line art" set... one that you can color.  What I especially like about this one is that while you color in the flowers and leaves, the images are quite small so it doesn't take forever to do the coloring.  I'm really into instant gratification and I would hate to spend 10-15 minutes coloring a flower.  While I'm not wild about this card, I decided it was worth a view.  What do you think??

I wanted a nice warm, bright color, so I chose one of my current favorites... Calypso Coral.  I used some of the matching DSP (that you can also get as a free Sale-a-bration item) for the bottom part of the card.  Then I stamped some of the flower and leaf images on the panel above.  I covered the seam between the two with some Calypso Coral seam binding.  The sentiment is from Cottage Greetings on page 94 of the big catalog.  I love the font in this set and it goes so nicely with the style of Flowering Fields.  The DSP in the background of this photo is one of the patterns in the coordinating Wildflower Fields collection.  Isn't it great how Stampin'Up! helps us with stamps, paper, and accessories that go together so beautifully? It makes creating a pretty card so much easier! 

By the way, I used the new archival Basic Black ink (page 28 of the Occasions catalog) to stamp the flowers.  This ink is permanent, so it is perfect for use when you're going to add color.  It dries quickly and won't smear... yay!

That's about it for my Monday post. I'm writing this post on Sunday night and Devoted Downton Abbey fan that I am, I'm getting ready to watch this week's episode.  What will we do on Sunday nights once this season is over?  I feel sad just thinking of it!  I guess I can always use the time on Sunday night to write an extra-long post!

Hope your week is off to a great start!
Stamp something pretty today!

Friday, January 15, 2016

Bloomin' Love,Stampin'Up!

Whoop de do... it's Friday!

What big plans do you have for the weekend?  I thought we were going to have a visit from the Seattle gang this weekend, but a couple of things came up that they cannot miss, so our belated Christmas has been put off once again.  Can you believe we will be opening our gifts in February now?  I'm seriously tempted to just save everything and re-gift it next year.  I'm sure the grandchildren wouldn't approve of that plan!

Have you noticed how quickly January is passing by?  Valentine's Day will be here before we know it, so if you are planning to make some hand-crafted cards for family and friends, now's the time to start planning.  Of course, Stampin'Up! has got you covered!  Just check out pages 16-17 of the new Occasions catalog and you'll fall in love with the new "Love Blossoms" suite of products.  This suite is anchored by a new stamp set called Bloomin' Love and there's also a great 6x6 stack of designer paper called Love Blossoms. 
A beautiful heart thinlit die, some gorgeous Blushing Bride glimmer paper and an embellishment kit round out this collection of goodies.

Let me show you a pretty and feminine card that I made using these products...

The colors I used for this card... Rose Red and Blushing Bride... were taken from the DSP.  I started with a white card base, then added a panel of Rose Red that I embossed with the Happy Heart embossing folder.  I cut a banner shape from some of the DSP, wrapped the front panel with some white satin ribbon, then added the stamped image.  I punched some flowers from Blushing Bride glimmer paper and added them to the heart which is stamped in Rose Red.  As always, this card is much prettier when seen "up close."

I would love to show you and your friends how easy it is to make this pretty card.   I've still got room on my calendar for your stamping party, where you'll get the freebies, so please let me know if you'd like to be the owner of some great new stamps!

Well, friends, I think we've come to the end of my post.  Whatever your plans for the weekend, I hope you'll leave a little time open for creativity.  There's nothing more relaxing and rejuvenating than allowing yourself  some time to play with your stamps, ink, and paper.

Happy weekend, everyone!

Wednesday, January 13, 2016

A party without cake....

Hey there,stampers! 

It's Wednesday, and you know what that means.  It means that I'm sitting down at my computer on Tuesday night, wracking my brain for clever things to say about my card so that you'll have something to see this morning.

I hope you don't feel too disillusioned, but I always write my blog posts ahead of time, then schedule them to be published on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays.  I find that it is easier to do a series of posts all at once, because once I start writing, it's just easier to keep going.

Today I'm going to show you a birthday card that you could use for almost anyone, with a change of color.  Take a look and you'll see what I mean...

I would never suggest giving a Melon Mambo card to a guy, but if you replaced it with Crushed Curry or Mint Macaron, then it would be totally acceptable for a man.  This card uses a lot of new products in the "It's My Party" Suite on pages 4-5 of the new Occasions catalog. 

There's new DSP, a new embossing folder, a new set of mini-punches, a new stamp set, and even some new baker's twine.
My favorite thing in the suite is this saying..."a party without cake is just a meeting."  If you think about it, doesn't a cake really "make" a party?  Cookies or pie just don't have the same impact as a cake!  And being a confirmed cake-a-holic, I insist on having a cake at any birthday party I'm hosting.  Of course candles and balloons are must-haves as well.

The designer paper, also called It's My Party is full of prints that would work for anyone... stripes, dots, stars, candles, confetti, balloons.  None of the designs are gender-specific or even age specific, which makes this paper so very versatile.  It will be your "go-to" paper every time you need a birthday card. 

OK, stampin' peeps, that's my post for Wednesday, January 13, 2016.  Please come back on Friday and I'll have more stamping inspiration for you.

Hugs and happiness,

Monday, January 11, 2016

Another masculine card with "the sky's the limit!"

Helloooo Monday!

How is it that Mondays seem to roll around so very quickly?  On Thursdays I start getting excited for the weekend, then it's Friday, then ... blip!... it's back to Monday again.  Don't you wish there was some way to slow down the passage of time on Saturday and Sunday?

It was a busy Saturday here at Stampin' Central, with 29 stampers attending my Occasions catalog and Sale-a-bration Kick Off.  We ate, chatted, laughed, stamped, and had a very nice time.  If you missed out on attending and would like to get an Occasions catalog, please contact me and I'll make sure to get one to you.

Since I showed you a masculine card on Friday, I thought I'd continue with that theme today.  My plan is to get these masculine cards out of the way so we can get back to the fun stuff... the flowery cards I prefer.  My apologies if you are a big fan of masculine cards.  Somehow they just don't float my boat, although I know that they are necessary.

This would be a great card for a guy who's graduated, who's been promoted at work, is starting a new job, or maybe even retiring!

For the background I used the Watercolor Wash background stamp, stamping in Soft Sky.  The sentiments are stamped in Early Espresso, as is the biplane.  The base of the card is Early Espresso, with a Lost Lagoon panel on top.  I used some 5/8 inch striped cotton ribbon in Lost Lagoon.  The woven stripes on this ribbon have a nice crisp look which reminds me of a pinstriped shirt... perfect for a masculine card.

May the week ahead be a good one for you!  I hope you'll be able to squeeze in a little time for creativity.  Heaven knows we all need a break from the mundane realities of life.  It's hard to be thinking about the chores that need doing or the bills that need to be paid when you are absorbed in the creative process.  So get out your stamps, ink, and paper and have some fun! You deserve it!

Hugs and happiness,

Friday, January 8, 2016

Sky is the Limit, Stampin' Up!

Hi there, stampers!  Happy Friday!

So sorry I missed my Wednesday post.  Is senility setting in?  I thought I had written and scheduled it, but by the time I found that I hadn't taken care of it, it was too late to do anything about it. 
So here I am, with egg on my face, hoping that you will give me a pass.

Are you excited for the weekend ahead?  Have you made some plans to do something relaxing, rejuvenating, or just plain fun?  Quite a few of my customers will be joining me tomorrow for my
Occasions Catalog and Sale-a-bration Kick-Off . I think everyone will be excited to get their new Occasions catalog, which is jam-packed with all sorts of amazing products.  Of course it will be fun to reconnect with everyone after the holidays.  It seems like a long, long time since we've stamped together.

Today I'm going to show you a card made with one of the free Sale-a-bration sets that you can earn with a $50 purchase.  It's called "Sky is the Limit" and it is only available until February 15th.  Then on that date, Stampin'Up! will unveil some new Sale-a-bration goodies.  This will keep the Sale-a-bration offerings fresh! 

OK, let's get to the card...

As you might remember, I'm not a huge fan of masculine cards.  I much prefer the flowery girly cards that I can send to my daughters, my sister, and my friends.  But once in a while, we all have a need for a masculine card.  With Valentine's Day as the next "holiday" on the horizon, I decided to make a masculine Valentine.  The sentiment "You send me soaring" is part of the set, along with the  bi-plane and the smoke that's in the shape of a heart. The set also includes some other sentiments, including "The Sky is the limit." "Happy Birthday," and "Congratulations.  This would be a great card for someone who's newly married to give to her husband.  If  you've been married for 45+ years like I have, maybe a more appropriate sentiment would be something like  "You drive me crazy."  I'm sure that some of you out there can relate!

The colors I used are Crumb Cake, Cherry Cobbler, and Early Espresso.  I stamped in Early Espresso and added the burlap ribbon for a bit of masculine texture.  The Tiny Triangles embossing folder adds more interest. 

I hope I'll see you at one of my upcoming events during Sale-a-bration, which goes until March 31st.
Have a great weekend, everyone!

Monday, January 4, 2016

Back to Real Life...

Hello Stampers!

Well, we knew this day was coming.  It's Monday, January 4th and the holidays are really and truly over.  And what a gift it was to have a snow day yesterday!  I loved staying in my jammies longer than usual and spending time upstairs in my stamping room, working on cards and gazing out the window at the beautiful snowy scene below. There was quite a parade past my window... a couple on bicycles, moms and dads pulling their little ones on sleds, bundled-up people walking their sweater-wearing dogs, and even a woman with a cast on her leg taking a walk on crutches!  What was she thinking???

It won't be long now... the new Occasions catalog will begin at 2 am on January 5th.  I wonder how many stampers will stay up until then to place an order?  I'm sure there'll be quite a few, but I'm hoping to be sound asleep at that hour.  Sale-a-bration starts on January 5th as well and goes until March 31st, so you have plenty of time to earn some fabulous freebies with each $50 you spend during this time.

Here's another sneak peek of new catalog goodies.  Beginning on Wednesday the 5th, the sneak peeks will be over and I'll just be showing new catalog products... products that are "orderable."
I hope you've enjoyed seeing some of the new goodies that are in store for you.

 That great script-y sentiment is from a free Sale-a-bration set called Hello.  The DSP (Botanical Gardens) and the three layered flower (made with the Botanical Builder Framelits) are both part of the Botanical Gardens Suite of products.  I can't wait for you to see this fabulous group of coordinating products!  You are going to love them! Stampin'Up! makes it so easy to create amazing projects with their color and style coordinated stamps, ink, DSP, card stock, and embellishments.
Well, my friends, that's my Monday post!  Now I'm going to put my creative hat on and start working on designing some new cards using new stamp sets, paper, and accessories.  Thanks for stopping by today!
Hugs and happiness,

Friday, January 1, 2016

Happy 2016!

Hello Stamping Friends!

Happy Friday and a happy new year to all!  May 2016 be a great year for all of us, filled with the blessings of family, friends, health, meaningful work, and of course STAMPING! 

Although I've been unable to blog for the past week, I think I've figured out how to use my laptop to access my blog and write new posts, so that's a very happy thing!  The process is a little different, but I think I can make it work until my tech wizard son-in-law Eli can travel down to Portland to solve my desktop computer's issues.  I think I must have picked up a virus somehow... I'm just not sure how that happened!

In just a few days... 4 to be exact... the new Occasions catalog will go "live."  We won't be able to order from it until noon on January 5th, as there is a transition time between the old and new catalogs from midnight on the 5th until noon on the 5th, as all of the old items are removed from the ordering system and all of the new item numbers are added.   

Meanwhile, you need another little sneak peek of new goodies, don't you agree?  Here's a card that I love and I hope you love it too...
This card is a lot brighter and more colorful in real life, but I think you can get the idea.  The gold panel is Hello Honey and the DSP is the new Botanical Gardens Designer Series Paper.  That fabulous sentiment is from a free Sale-a-bration stamp set called Botanicals for You.  I stamped it in Mossy Meadow, then added the little flowers and leaves in Hello Honey, Cajun Craze, and more Mossy Meadow. 
I love the huge size of this sentiment.  The set also includes 3 smaller sayings so you have options.  Your card can say "just for you... on your special day" or add
... because you're so nice or
... because you're awesome.
I hope you are planning to attend my Occasions Catalog and Sale-a-bration Kick-Off next Saturday, January 9th.  The morning session is now full, but there are spots open in the afternoon from 1-3 pm.  The best part is that you'll get to pick up your new Occasions catalog and the Sale-a-bration brochure as well!  This is a free event and there'll be stamping fun, yummy food, and door prizes too!  You won't want to miss out on this afternoon of stamping, so send me a quick email to so I can save you a spot at the stamping table!
Please come back on Monday for more stamping inspiration!
Hugs and happiness!