Monday, October 31, 2011

Happy Halloween!

I love Halloween. Some years I have more energy for it than others, and this year was a low energy year, but I did celebrate with my family yesterday--at our annual Pumpkin Carving Extravangza! Ok, well, we all carve pumpkins on the floor of the Kohls' living room. I don't have pics, as my sister and nephews have them, but I do have something to share--

COOKIES! I used Stampin' Up!'s new Sweet Pressed Cookie Stamps to make Halloween cookies. After 14 year old Nathan ate one, he declared, "Good." He then noticed the Jack-o-lantern impression. Go figure. I didn't go all fancy and bag them up or anything. The top one is one of the sugar cookies and the bottom two are Shortbread. Both recipes came from the insert provided by Stampin' Up! I found it easy to make them, especially with a cookie scoop to make similar sized cookie balls. After scooping them, I just slipped the silicone stamp on the wooden handle and then :

I was so proud! I made a nice looking cookie!

Then, reality struck as I took the first batch out of the oven:

Yep. That's the batch on the floor. Bummer. The first ones weren't ones that were edible due to my clumsiness, so I had to keep trying! The final results were pretty good.

Happy Stamping!


Saturday, October 29, 2011

Start November with Digital Designing!

Wow! November? How did that happen? It's just around the corner. I feel like September and October just flew by! Luckily, I stole a few moments to make my November calender in advance:

Cool, huh? I used new, FREE downloads for Stampin' Up!'s Digital Scrapbooking Days, November 4-7! I can imagine spending the weekend snuggling under fleece, digi-scrapping my Christmas books and calenders, and chatting with online friends at Well, I'll do it around my busy schedule!
Celebrate Scrapbooking by checking out!

Happy Stamping! (and designing)


Thursday, October 27, 2011

A Flowery Noel

Red is a color of Christmas and winter flowers contrast with the white snow of winter in a joyous way. I always have red in my winter decorations and perhaps that's why a swap card I received featuring a cool punched flower had to be CASED. (Copy and Share Everything is our Motto).

Stamps: Many Merry Messages
Paper: Holly Bouquet Designer Series Paper, Real Red, Wild Wasabi, Early Espresso, Whisper White
Ink: Early Espresso
Accessories: 1" Circle Punch, Sponge Dauber, Shimmer Paint, Real Red Brad, Itty Bitty Circle Punch, Sticky pages, Mini Glue Dots, Paper Snips

You'll need 8 circles. Fold 7 of them so that the one "half" is less than the other. Then trim off a tip on each one. Arrange overlapping with the 8th circle as a guide, and you have them! So very cool.

I'd love the thank the stamper who made these, but I lost the contact info. If anyone knows who I can give credit to, let me know!

I made duplicates to round off my Christmas Card collection. Every month except September, I made a bunch (up to 12) and now I have plenty for sending out. These 4 are bonuses!

Happy Stamping!


Tuesday, October 25, 2011

A Gentle Get Well

I've said it before and I'll say it again--Stampin' Up! designed the Spice Cake suite just for me-- leaves, fall colors--no pink! As I designed this card, I knew it needed to be earthy--a reminder of the strength found in nature to sustain us through hard times.

I'm sending this one off to a friend's husband whom is having difficulty recovering from a motorcycle accident. I've known them for 10 years and they have made my time here teaching a joy.

Stamps: Gently Falling, Sincere Salutations  
Paper: Spice Cake Designer Series paper, Crumb Cake, Very Vanilla, Early Espresso, Pool Party Ink: More Mustard, Pumpkin Pie, Soft Suede
Accessories: Early Espresso 1/8" Ribbon, 3 " Circle Bigz Die, Big Shot, Tags Sizzlet, 2 1/2" Circle Punch, Simply Scored, 12" Paper Cutter, Oval Punch, More Mustard Brad, Paper Piercing Tool

I got the template for this card from my Stampin' Up! Demonstrator friend, Patrice, at our last team meeting. She figured out a template that would fit a regular sized envelope. For my card, I first inked my leaves in More Mustard and then swirled the edges using the rock-n-roll technique. Then, I stamped the outlines in Soft Suede. For the tag, I sponged the edges and then stamped my old-time favorite Sincere Salutations. For the background, I cut squares of Spice Cake Designer series paper to fit my template.

Happy Stamping!


Sunday, October 23, 2011

Halloween Treats, no tricks!

I couldn't ever play a trick on the Ronald McDonald House of Marshfield and these treats are headed there: I hope this bouquet of treats brightens a moment or two for the families staying there!

Stamps: Spooky Bingo Bits
Paper: Frightful Sight, Basic Black, Basic Gray, Pumpkin Pie, Cherry Cobbler
Ink: Pumpkin Pie, Basic Black
Accessories: Simply Scored, Sticky Pages, 1" Circle Punch, 1 1/4" Circle Punch, 1 3/4" Circle Punch, 1 3/8" Circle Punch, Dimensionals, Cello Bags 1" by 8"

I've been making these all morning and am glad to have them ready to send off in the mail tomorrow. I found it easy to make a bunch of these with the Simply Scored. I just placed my 12 x12 paper on the top, and scored every 1/2 inch. Lickity split! I then cut 1 1/4" Inch strips and turned them into lollies! I have two tips for you--

Tip #1 Make a paper ramp for your candy. It's much easier to put it in with a shoe horn-type paper folded into a V.

 Tip#2: Use a circle punch to punch out a circle of sticky pages to adhere to your lolly center. It will never separate with that much hold!

Happy Stamping!


Friday, October 21, 2011

Double the Tree Trimmings

My students are obsessed with gum at school. I keep picturing the double mint twins, but when I reference them in a joke, the 11 and 12 year olds I teach look at me as if I am crazy. Anyway, the idea of double vision or double the fun came to me with this card.

Stamps: Tags Til Christmas, Many Merry Messages
Paper: Wild Wasabi, Bashful Blue, Whisper White, Holly Bouquet Designer Series Paper
Ink: Real Red, Wild Wasabi
Accessories: Mover's and Shapers XL die, Holiday Windows, Big Shot, Scallop Trim border, Red Baker's Twine, Vintage Wallpaper Embossing Folder

To cut my card front, I simply placed the Movers and Shakers Die on my Big Shot. I then placed the ornament cut out where I wanted the first one. I placed my cardstock on top and ran it through my Big Shot. I then lifted up the cardstock, moved the die a bit down and right and then ran it through again. Easy! and cute!

Happy Stamping!


Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Gingerbread House Tips and Tricks

Today, I am sharing the details of the Gingerbread house I made for the Stampin' Addicts Big Shot Blog Hop last weekend. I appreciate all of the positive comments I've received on it. I wasn't sure when I was "done" if I added enough, too much, or not enough. I liked it so, but wasn't sure how well it would be received. I am filled with gratitude from all of the positive feedback I have gotten. Thank-you.

 First, the base is Early Espresso. I first made it the size of one milk carton, but my door wouldn't fit, so I made it bigger to fit the door. The door is the glitter striped paper from the Holly Berry Bouquet paper. I needed a frame, so I used plain old Wild Wasabi Cardstock punched out with the Designer Label punch and layered them to fit the door. I added a heart from the Owl Builder punch for a door handle. I wanted a candy cane, but the red candy cane didn't look right. I then decided to add candy canes from the Jolly Bingo Bits stamp set around the entire house. I also added a scallop trim border around the bottom like icing (but way easier than the real thing). For the windows, I punched a square with the scallop trim corner punch to make a cute little background for my striped inside. I also added some peppermint candies to go with my theme.

The roof is featured in this picture. Yes, I did punch strip after strip of paper with the Scallop Trim Punch. I wanted it to look like icing. My favorite houses have the decorator icing all on top. I was afraid it wouldn't look right, but the only way to find out was to try. After I got the roof done, I added 1/2" circle punched circles of Real Red and Wild Wasabi and dabbed them with Dazzling Details. How fun! I love gumdrops!

Ok, here it is: how to combine two milk carton cut outs to make this box:
 I just adhered the tab of one of the boxes on to the side of the other and then folded every 2 panels. I then, folded the bottom tabs in so that one was on top of the other. Easy.

The top was a different story. I had to create new score lines by taking a ruler and my scoring tool from my simply scored. I went from the corners where the roof meets the side to the center of the panels. I refolded on these score lines and added my roof of crumb cake paper, which I had cut to 5 x 3 1/2" and scored at 2 3/4".
Perhaps this view helps:

 I hope this allows you to create your own!

Happy Stamping!


Monday, October 17, 2011

Big Shot Blog Hop Close-Ups

Thanks for all the positive comments on my post last weekend. I appreciate all of them dearly. That's one thing that's amazing about being a Stampin' Up! demonstrator--joy in creating.

In order to make the blog hop viewable, we are limited to 4 photos per post. Otherwise, hoppers could be there all day! I wanted to add more photos and details about my projects, so here they are. Wednesday will bring a tutorial on the gingerbread house. Come on back to see that! First, the pumpkin.
 I followed Carmen's tutorial on her blog Stampin' Addiction, "Hexagon Box Tutorial." As I wrote in my original post, one of her swaps at Convention was a cute little hexagon box. I thought it looked just like a pumpkin and wanted to make one. So very cute! I found it hard to make the Crystal Effects seal, but that's just my messy style. Once I added the crimped cylinder of Old Olive in the center, it all worked out just fine. I used the Pennant Punch for the triangles, but free cut my mouth all my own.

Next, the Haunted House:
 From this view you can see the ghosts I stamped right on the silver glimmer paper with black ink. I love those Spooky Bingo Bits! Such a cute way to make accents! I cut a bit of Frightful Sight Designer Series paper featuring the spider for some fun. The boo is Basic Black on Peach Parfait.

 I used the tombstone from Spooky Bingo Bits on Basic Gray and cut them out. I folded the bottom over when I attached them to make them pop up a bit. You can see the Spider Web Embossing folder in the background.  For the clouds, I used the Cupcake Builder Punch and used a mini clothespin to shut the box. The bat wouldn't stamp right on the Glitter paper--the solid image didn't like the glitter texture, so I stamped on Whisper White and trimmed. It's more like a bat signal now than a bat flying in the moonlight like I first envisioned, but it works.

The front has a window that I punched out with the 1" Square Punch. I used Concord Crush with the Postage Stamp Punch to make the window border. Inside you can see my gummie spiders. I had to add a layer inside of silver Waffle paper so what light that did make it in would make them show up. The front one is yellow and red and you can barely tell. However, a 10 year old who saw it in person noticed them right away:). The cat needed some grounding so I used my Scallop border punch to add a little fence like action. I used a circle of Glimmer paper cut with the circles in the Cupcake Builder Punch to add a little glam to the witch's hat.

My last feature today is the Birdhouse. As I wrote in my blog hop post, I was inspired by the beautiful papers in the Frostwood Lodge Suite.

 I used the 1 1/4"  Circle punch for my opening and added a scallop circle for the door. It needed something more, so I used a scrap to quill a flower. That way, my plaid pattern showed up! I used the 5 Petal Punch to get a leaf. The windows are 4my favorite detail, though. I used the a Curly Label Punch for the outline on the red birch-like paper. I then needed windows so crimped some paper, gathered it with some Red Baker's Twine. A few glue dots later and I had curtains!

The roof was made by layering scalloped pieces of the birchbark paper. The roof looked a little bare, so I added a quilled flower. I then used more red Baker's Twine to make a hanger. A cute, but rather easy Christmas ornament.

Remember, I'll explain the gingerbread house on Wednesday. Until then,
Happy Stamping!


Friday, October 14, 2011

What to Do with the Milk Carton Die- Big Shot Blog Hop

Big Shot. I want to be a Big Shot. I love my Big Shot. Hardly a project goes by when I don't use it! Owning one has changed my papercrafting--for the better! Embossing, 3D-ing, Card-making, Die-cutting, quilting, oh I love all the things I can do with it. My friends at Stampin' Addicts (the number one site for stampin' ideas) and I decided to celebrate the Big Shot with a blog hop in it's honor. If you have already been hopping, you may have come from Carmen's blog featuring the Candy Wrapper Die (my second favorite die) or perhaps you are hopping backwards and came from Debra's blog featuring the Petal Cone Die (my third favorite die).

Welcome to all things Milk Carton, my favorite die! Love it! Here's what I made this week with it:

Cool, huh? I've been inspired by papers, the seasons, and well, my own creativity.

First up is the pumpkin box. I've seen a few around that look similar, although I've had this idea from the moment I got a swap from Carmen (the blog before mine) at Convention. She had this great little treat box and I thought--it's a pumpkin! Inside, a whole bunch of candy corn.
Next up, a haunted house. I made this with a single milk carton die cut. I just embossed it with my spider web embossing folder, filled it with gummy spiders, added a square window, a little bling from my Spooky Bingo Bits, and I have a super cute party favor!

By the way, it's sitting on a box bottom that I made from the Milk Carton Die. I couldn't get a lid to fit so I used it as a platform instead!

Next up, my flannel birdhouse. The Frostwood Lodge paper called to me with its wood tones and plaids. I knew I wanted to make a birdhouse and this is what I designed!

I added the quilled flowers after I had leftover strips from my roof. How cute! I just love my windows!

Finally, the best of the bunch--the gingerbread house.

This was mulling over in my mind for a while. When I went to make it, I realized that I had wayyyyyyy more ideas than would fit on one milk carton. So, I combined two milk cartons to make this extra large holiday decor (filled with peppermints). I used the Jolly Bingo Bits for accents along with my punches and fun papers!

I'll post more details and pictures on my blog Monday, so come back to visit and see more! For now, move on down the blog hop to Debra's blog Heartfelt Inspirations and see all the amazing creations with the Petal Cone Die!

Happy Stamping!


Thursday, October 13, 2011

Stitched Stockings in a Row

I am a known swap-a-holic. When a Holiday Mini Catalog swap sign up crossed my inbox, I had to do it. Who cares if I was in the middle of Convention swaps at the time and we didn't even know what was in the Holiday Mini? When I shared my cards with my stampers, they all oohhhed and ahhed over one and then demanded we make it. Here is my version of the great Cindy Elam's stitched stocking card:

Stamps: Stitched Stockings, Many Merry Messages  
Paper: Holly Berry Bouquet, Real Red, Whisper White, Wild Wasabi  
Ink: Wild Wasabi, Real Red
Accessories: Big Shot, Snow Burst Textured Impressions Embossing Folder, Silver Glimmer Paper, Stocking Builder Punch

My Stampin Celebration stampers loved it, but thought it would take a long time. However, it didn't the stocking punch makes the card a snap! Here is Cindy's version:

Stamping is all about CASEing other cards. (C=Copy, A=and, S=share, E=everything). We often are inspired by others, the Idea Book and Catalog, and sometimes our own brain! Sharing what we love--that's stampin'!

Happy Stamping!


Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Happy Turkey Day!

Happy Thanksgiving! I love Thanksgiving and just had to share this little guy I made last week with my Stampin' Celebrations group. I first saw this version at Convention during a presentation by Carrie Cudney. I knew we had to make them! So cute!


Stamps: none
Paper: Spice Cake Designer Paper, Chocolate Chip, More Mustard, Pumpkin Pie, Brights Designer Series Paper Pack, Regals Designer Series Paper Pack
Ink: None
Accessories: Heart Treat Cups, Heart Punch, Build a Blossom Punch, 1 1/4" Circle Punch, 1/2" Circle Punch, Itty Bitty Circle Punch, Sticky Strip, Mini Glue Dots, Chocolate Chip Scalloped Edge Ribbon

I made them on two different backgrounds as I was experimenting. I like them both. One of the best features of Stampin' Up! Designer Series paper is versatility. The Spice Cake paper included these green sides, which worked perfectly with the colors of my turkey.

The only tip I have is a photo of the wings laid out. I added a circle base underneath so I could figure out where to place them.

Happy Stamping!


Sunday, October 9, 2011

Spooky Spider Web

I don't think I can make a Halloween card without using the spider web embossing folder. So when my demonstrator friend Patrice Pierce showed a group of demonstrator friends this technique, I knew I had to do it immediately. Besides, it fits my inner child.

Stamps: Spooky Bingo Bits
Paper: Cajun Craze, Basic Gray, Frightful Night Designer Series paper
Ink: Basic Black, Cajun Craze
Accessories: Spider Web Embossing Folder, 1" Circle Punch, 1 1/4" Circle Punch, White Crayon, Brayer, Lucky Limeade Ruffled Ribbon

So cute! It looks as if I colored the web, but I didn't--not really. Here is how I did it:

First, put a piece of paper the size you want inside the embossing folder with the ridged side of the spiderweb underneath.

Take your crayon (after removing the wrapper), and rub it over the paper. This leaves a wax rubbing of the web.

Using your brayer (I have one just for black), ink up the paper. Repeat as much as needed to make it look dark.

Finally, use a cloth to wipe off the excess. (I used a napkin--we don't use paper towel in our house).

Pretty cool, huh?

Happy Stamping!



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