Thursday, August 30, 2012


Here's another beginner card using only a few supplies.  After scoring the sides to make the folds, I stamped the holly from the SU "Christmas Blessings" set in green on the panels.  (If you have only black, you could color the leaves and berries.)

Next, I stamped the greeting in black on green cs and used a square scallop punch.  Any large punch would do, or you could just cut a square.  Since I had the brad and light green tab, I used it to hold the gate closed.  I could have cut a holly leaf and mounted it with a dimensional in the same place instead.  Inside is "Merry Christmas" stamped in black.

Materials used:  white cs, one scrap of green cs, double stick tape, scallop punch, red gem brad with green tab, green and black inks, and 3 stamps.

TIP:  Make sure you put tape on just the left side of the square so you don't seal the card shut!

Wednesday, August 29, 2012


Here's the first card under the new label of "Beginner Basics."  (See previous post.)   The tree was stamped on a large scrap of white cs with India Ink Black.  Green, red and gold gelly roll glitterpens were used to highlight some of the swirls, ornaments and the star.  One small clear gem was added to the star center.

To start, I used white cs from Walmart as the base.  Using colored  cs on top saves money since you only need 1/4 of a sheet per card instead of the usual half.  Using the edge of the tree for a border, I stamped the edge of the green with Versamark and attached the panel with ds tape.

After coloring the tree and cutting down the white panel, I attached it to the card with SU dimensionals.

The materials used were:  white cs  and a 4 x 5 1/4" piece of green SU cs, two stamps (one for inside,) three Gelly Roll pens,  black india ink, Versamark, one gem, ds tape, and 5 dimensionals.

With a minimum of supplies, this card was easy to do without looking like a "beginner" card!

Tuesday, August 28, 2012


I've decided to start a new category just for beginners. I'll be posting cards using a minimum of materials.

If you've been a stamper for awhile, think back with me to our starting days. What supplies did you have? Remember the first time you saw gold embossing being demonstrated? Did your eyes pop like mine did? ...and didn't we all cut out images by hand before our CB days? Ten years ago when I started, ALL my supplies fit into a set of 3 plastic drawers from Kmart! Now, I have a "tower" full that I have to keep re-organizing (not that I'm complaining.)

One thing I miss is: the local stamp store. It's been replaced by the big chains further away with nobody to let you try things or show you new techniques as they evolve. However, now I make use of the internet for purchasing new stamp sets and supplies that are delivered right to my door--who would have thought... And now there's Utube demos and Splitcoast Stampers for ideas. WOW! What a world!

As I think of the new stamper, though, I realize that all the products and techniques we now take for granted must be overwhelming. So I came up with the idea of showing how to make beautiful cards with minimal supplies (or expense!). Look for something later today under Beginner Basics.

Meanwhile, leave a comment naming something in your stash you couldn't live without or the latest innovation you find most helpful. For me, it would be the clear stamps and acrylic mounts that enable you to see exactly where you're placing things, as well as how much less room they need for storage!

Sunday, August 26, 2012


Now that summer is winding down, it's time to start adding to the Christmas cards for this year.  Since I send out 100, I like to get an early start.  This card is from last year's set from SU, "Beautiful Season."  It was very easy to make, starting with Crumb Cake cardstock and a woodgrain Versamark background.

After stamping the image and greeting, I colored the leaves with a green marker and the berries with a red Gelly Roll glitter pen.  I stamped the bird again on white, colored it with a gray marker, added a little "blush" on its tummy and mounted it over the one beneath with dimensionals.  Then I stamped the inside greeting and rounded the top right corner--done!

Friday, August 17, 2012


Hexagons--what a great way to use up some scraps!

For the birthday greeting, I stamped it on a scrap of matching green cs and cut it larger than the opening.  To line it up with the word window, I  covered the back of it with SNAIL and held it in place behind the ivory panel as I pressed it onto the card base.  Then I removed the panel, added dimensionals and attached that to the card front over the greeting.
(I hope this makes sense.)

Thursday, August 16, 2012

State Fair Results

Blue ribbons for the birthday, pergamano and Christmas card divisions, and a second place for the other Christmas card.  Since my cards were the only ones entered in the Professional category (because I teach, sell cards and have been published) it was really no contest.  In fact, there were only about 20 cards overall.

Sadly, this will be my last year to enter.


Nothing like before and after photos to tell the story! As you can see by the first photo, I had very little clean work space. I wasted more time looking for things than I did for stamping. How frustrating is that!

To achieve this dramatic improvement, I followed my own advice of three piles: one to give away, one to throw away and one to put away (the hardest of all!) The throw-away pile went into a few plastic garbage bags, the give-away pile is in the hallway to bring downstairs and actually give to fellow stampers and, for the rest of the story, I did a marathon rearranging of everything left. In fact, it took all week.
First, the overstuffed closet. Notice that now you can actually see the floor! There are no longer any obstacles to reaching things. The white cubicle holds odd items that have nothing to do directly with stamping but are out of the way. On top is a stack of stamping books and magazines I will go through later today with the same 3 piles in mind. The 5 containers are clearly labeled, 2 with Christmas stamps, 1 for Halloween and Easter/Spring and the bottom 2 for travel memorabilia. I still have 1 more empty one to use later, probably for Mothers Class items. To the right is a metal duct (looks gray here) that I placed all my magnets on from the fridge, which also looks neater now, too. Can you tell I was on a roll???
Meanwhile, back at the table, I moved my Cuttlebug station over to a more accessible spot next to my desk blotter. It used to sit on top of the file drawers which now fits underneath the table. The top drawer holds all my embossing folders and dies. The second drawer is for specialty 12 x 12 paper and the bottom drawer...well that's another whole story.

The biggest change is how I store my cardstock. A few years ago I bought a huge paper rack for $25 from a craft store that went out of business. I set it up in the closet, arranged my cs in color families on 36 slots and kept it behind closed doors away from the sunlight. Unfortunately, I had a hard time seeing the variety of shades in such a dark area. That rack is now in the hallway to be given away and the cs is in file folders in the bottom drawer under the CB. It's still protected from fading sunlight, but now I can see what I have. In fact, I discovered whole unopened packs of delicious SU cardstock that had been hidden. I won't need to buy any more cs for years!
Several of the items that were taking up space on the table have been moved to the second cubicle that I took out of the closet. It now holds a basket of Stickles; a basket of distress inks, pads and sponges; and a box of embellishments--all easily reached from my chair. Notice the absence of clutter on the floor!
Finally, a view of my table and desk from the door. It took hours of sorting, purging and rearranging to get things back under control; but it was all worth it!

Friday, August 3, 2012


...RIBBONS, that is! Three blue and one red--more details later...

Wednesday, August 1, 2012


The Holiday Frame embossing folder on P. 7 is soooo versatile.  Here it is with another butterfly (imagine that!) and an appropriate Bible verse.

Using a scrap of double-sided dsp, I die cut the solid butterfly, cut it in half and overlapped one over the other for a side view.  For the black overlay, I brushed some Galaxy Gloss on it and set it aside to dry.

Then I used the embossing folder on the front of a white card and brushed a Versamark Dazzle ink pad over the raised portions for a little glimmer.  I then stamped the verse on some dsp and rounded the corners plus the lower right corner of the card.  To assure that it wouldn't come loose during mailing, I attached it to the card with two large glue dots.  The gold bow was added with a smaller glue dot.

Once the butterfly was dry, I assembled it and attached it with a dimensional. It is positioned to cover the tiny Christmas tree underneath, making the oval useable for any season!