Thursday, February 27, 2014

Big Sisters Rule!

And I'm not just saying that because I are one, heehee! I just think being firstborn has its advantages (as well as a few disadvantages). One of the big advantages is feeling so grown up when helping Mommy and Daddy with the new baby. Another is bossing your younger siblings around when they get older, not that I ever did anything like that. Ahem.

I made this card for the daughter of a friend who just had a baby. This little girl has been the center of the universe for a few years, and may have some adjusting to do, lol. So in addition to the "congrats on the new baby" card I sent the parents, I also sent her a card acknowledging her new role in the family.

Every little girl I know wants to be a princess, so I had to devise a crown for her card. I took a small bite out of a Gold Foil Sheet with the 1 3/4" Circle punch, and then a bigger bite (about halfway) with the largest of the Boho Blossoms Punch. All I had to do was trim the sides a bit and add some pearls and bling, and voilĂ  - a princess crown!

Since I don't have any stamps that say 'big sister', I just printed it out on Whisper White cardstock, using the Algerian font which looks similar to the font used on the stamp.

STAMPS: You're Amazing
CARDSTOCK: Crisp Cantaloupe, Whisper White, Watercolor Wonder DSP, Gold Foil Sheets, Creped Filter Paper
INK: VersaMark, Calypso Coral
ACCESSORIES: Big Shot, Apothecary Accents Framelits, Bitty Banners Framelits, Pansy Punch, Boho Blossoms Punch, Gold Stampin' Emboss Powder, Heat Tool, Stamping Sponges, Rhinestones Basic Jewels, Pearls Basic Jewels, Stampin' Dimensionals, gold brads

Saturday, February 22, 2014

Happy National Margarita Day!

From Millan.Net
Yes, folks, today is the day that we celebrate that delicious concoction of lime juice, simple syrup, and distilled blue agave (aka tequila), with a spash of Cointreau or Triple Sec. And I just happen to have an appropriately-themed card, since it was the hubs' birthday a couple days ago!

Mmmmm, margarita-y goodness! There's even some "salt" on the rim, haha.

What's your favorite flavor? Do you prefer the traditional, lime based drink? Or are you drawn to the fruity flavors like strawberry or mango? Do you go for the blended, Slurpee style drink, or do you choose "on the rocks"? Salted rim or no salt? So many choices!!!

STAMPS: Happy Hour
CARDSTOCK: Basic Black, Whisper White, Gold Fancy Foil Vellum
INK: (Stampin' Write Markers) Basic Black, Smoky Slate, Cherry Cobbler, Lucky Limeade (ret.), River Rock (ret.), Certainly Celery (ret.)
ACCESSORIES: Pearls Basic Jewels, Twinklets Diamond Dust (non-SU)

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Freaky Mish-Mash

Welcome to the February 2014 Tour de Freaks! Our theme this month is "Mish-Mash", meaning we can do whatever we like! Which is right up my alley, because I like doing whatever the heck I want! It's the non-conformist creative person inside me showing through, heh heh.

I'm the first stop on the tour this month, but you may have just landed here from Judy DiScipio's blog. Weren't her projects great? There are eleven blogs linked and you can take the tour by clicking on the "next stop" button at the bottom of each blog.

My projects this month are from the All Occasions Class we just had. My idea was to create a bunch of different cards (without any greetings on them) to have available for any occasion that might pop up. Then all we'd have to do is add the appropriately themed greeting and get it right in the mail the same day! So you will see the "blank" card, and then one with a greeting added.

First up is something that could work as a masculine or a feminine card. The card uses Summer Silhouettes for the basic card, with a greeting from Perfect Pennants added on the second card.

STAMPS: Summer Silhouettes, Perfect Pennants  CARDSTOCK: Whisper White, Cajun Craze, Retro Fresh DSP  INK: So Saffron, Tangerine Tango, Baked Brown Sugar, Cajun Craze  ACCESSORIES: Big Shot, Banners Collection Framelits, Gold Baker's Twine

Next up is a decidedly feminine card with flowers and butterflies. The basic card doesn't even use any stamps! The second card uses Perfect Pennants again for the greeting. This one is going to someone very special to let them know I'm thinking of them.

STAMP: Perfect Pennants  CARDSTOCK: Whisper White, Island Indigo, Melon Mambo, Daffodil Delight, Gingham Garden DSP  INK: Island Indigo  ACCESSORIES: Big Shot, Apothecary Accents Dies, Fancy Fan folder, Bitty Butterfly Punch, Pearls Basic Jewels

Up last, is another card that would work for a man or woman. I'm giving it to a family member (who shall remain nameless) whose birthday is coming up real soon!

STAMPS: Flowering Flourishes, Delightful Dozen  CARDSTOCK: Whisper White, Old Olive, Pumpkin Pie, Gingham Garden DSP  INK: Old Olive, Basic Black  ACCESSORIES: Big Shot, Circle Card Thinlits, Modern Label Punch, Brights Designer Buttons, Brights Candy Dots

Yes, I realize the colors are different. I didn't have enough of the same style buttons!

Did you like the before and after ideas? I hope so! Having a ready-to-mail supply of any occasion cards is a good thing.

That's all for me this month. Next up is LeeAnn Greff's blog. Thanks for taking the tour this month. I hope you come back soon!

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

"May" There Be Love!

Lots had happened in the Elam family these past few days. We have welcomed a new bundle of joy, of the four-legged variety! After we had to put Bear to sleep almost ten years ago, we thought we could never go through that heartache again. Well, I guess time does heal some wounds, at least to the point where we thought we might be ready for a fur kid to love again.

This time we opted to adopt from a rescue organization or shelter, instead of getting a puppy.  We looked and looked, trying to find the "right" one. The first one we wanted went to a forever home before we got to meet him, so the search continued. We never got a response from a rescue organization on two others we were interested in, so we kept looking.

One day my honey came home from work and said he'd stopped by the local animal shelter on the way home and saw a likely candidate, and that I should go look at her in "Cell #51". I went the next day, and she did seem like a sweet girl, so I went to the office to see about getting her. They informed me that there were three people ahead of me on the wait list to adopt her. Yikes! I was sure we would lose on this one, too.
From Millan.Net
We were supposed to go back at noon on Saturday, and if no one else ahead of us claimed her, she would be ours. We got there 25 minutes early, but of course we had to wait until noon. (That was a looong 25 minutes.)

Now here is where I think divine intervention came into play......#3 on the wait list was there, too, BUT he didn't bring his children with him (which was clearly stated in the instructions on the card we both got). They won't place a dog unless they know the kids, and any other family dogs, all get along. So we got her!!!!

Her name is May, and she's 2 years 3 months old. We know this because she was micro-chipped, but the owners never responded to the shelter trying to contact them. I cannot imagine why they would want to give her up. She's already been spayed, knows her commands (sit, stay, down, shake, wait, okay), walks properly on a leash, is a dream traveling in the car. The only area I think needs a bit of work is coming when she's called.

So, needless to say, we are already smitten with this adorable creature. We think she's a Beagle cross, possibly with coonhound. Who knows? Who cares? She's OURS!!!

Thursday, February 13, 2014

Valentine's Day Eve

Today is Valentine's Day Eve, and also my baby girl's birthday (happy birthday, Shawn!). Do you have any special plans for your sweetheart tomorrow?

Here's a competely different take on a Valentine for somebody special.... no hearts of any color, no red, and only a little pink. This would work for a BFF, family member, or favorite co-worker.

This was my swap card for my stamping team meeting last night. My downlines and I started doing a monthly swap this year, and we're having a blast! I love seeing their creativity, and getting inspiration from them for MY customers. It's a win-win for us all!

So, in addition to talking about the latest news from Stampin' Up, we do a couple of make & takes, eat sweets, and have a good old time. If you'd like to see what all the fun of being a demo is about, we'd love to have you join us for a team meeting! The next one is March 12th at 7:00 PM. If you're interested, contact me for more info!

STAMPS: Blessed Easter and Oh, Goodie!
CARDSTOCK: Whisper White, Basic Black, Coastal Cabana, Shimmery White, Sweet Sorbet DSP
INK: StazOn Jet Black, Primrose Petals, Crushed Curry, Coastal Cabana, Pear Pizzazz
ACCESSORIES: Big Shot, Ovals Collection Framelits, Decorative Dots embossing folder, Basic Black 1/8" Taffeta Ribbon, Blender Pens, Stampin' Dimensionals

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Christmas in February

I know it sounds insane, but bear with me a moment! We've all had some time to recover from the Christmas chaos, right? And even though much of the country is still locked in a deep freeze, and the LAST think you want to think about is winter holidays (come on Spring, for heaven's sake!), if you create beautiful hand-crafted cards (and you send out about 90 of them, like I did last year), you really need to make a few every month. Otherwise, you'll be running around in a panic at the last minute trying to get them finished, signed, addressed and mailed. Where's the fun in THAT? Creativity is supposed to be a fun, relaxing activity, is it not?

Therefore, I give myself the month of January off to recuperate, and am ready to face the task again in February. The Christmas Card Club meets monthly from February until November. That gives us ten months to get the cards finished, and plenty of time to write personal notes and sign them, address the envelopes (I've taken to printing the labels now to save time), and get them in the mail at the beginning of December.

If you can't make it to our Christmas Card Club, why don't you have your own "club" once a month? Just figure out how many cards you need, divide it by ten, and make that many cards every month! Put it on your calendar. Make a date with yourself! You could even invite a friend or two for a fun few hours of crafty time. And just think of how you'll feel when you have that stack of beautiful cards all ready to go without stressing about it?

This card uses the Best of Snow stamp set (available through March 31st), but you could use any of the holiday stamps sets that are still available to order, even though they aren't in the current catalogs.

STAMPS: Best of Snow, Teeny Tiny Wishes
CARDSTOCK: Whisper White, Real Red, Old Olive, Gold Foil Sheets, Old Olive DSP Stack (retired)
INK: StazOn Jet Black, Real Red and Old Olive Stampin' Write Markers
ACCESSORIES: Big Shot, Window Frames Collection Framelits, Banners Framelits Dies, Decorative Dots folder, Rhinestones Basic Jewels

Sunday, February 9, 2014


You're on Candid Camera! Am I dating myself? Probably a large percent of you don't even know about that old TV show, huh?

As promised, here is the other card that we made in yesterday's Second Saturday Stampers club. You know, the one that uses those nine punches!

This would be a cute "Hello", "Thinking of You", or even Valentine's Day card.

Since cameras are really trendy right now, I wanted to try to create a camera card, using the Envelope Punch Board (hey, that makes TEN punches!) as a starting point. I Googled camera images to get an idea of lens placement, flash apparatus, viewfinder, etc., and came up with this. It's really easy to put together, but there are a lot of pieces when you add up all the punched, layered circles.

And what better greeting to use on a camera card than "You make me smile" from A Round Array. (If we had a stamp that said "Say cheese", I would have used it instead, lol.)
From Millan.Net

The layers of the camera lens are popped up on Stampin' Dimensionals to simulate the effect of a lens zooming in and out. And even with the double layers of dimensionals, it's still not so thick as to require extra postage. Yay!

STAMP: A Round Array
CARDSTOCK: Real Red, Brushed Silver, Silver Foil Sheets, Silver Glimmer, Basic Gray, Basic Black, Whisper White, Fresh Prints DSP Stack
INK: Real Red
ACCESSORIES: Big Shot, Circles Collection Framelits, Envelope Punch Board, Stampin' Trimmer, 1-3/4" Circle Punch, 1-3/8" Circle Punch, 1-1/4" Circle Punch, 1" Circle Punch, Small Oval PunchOwl Builder Punch, 7/8" Scallop Circle Punch, 3/16" Corner Punch, Word Window Punch

Saturday, February 8, 2014

Second Saturday Stampers

Did you know there is an awesome stamp club that meets monthly at my house? That's right! Every second Saturday we get together and have a great time, talking and laughing and eating. Oh, and stamping, too, of course!

This is one of the cards we made today. It was inspired by this card by Amy White.  I changed up the color combination a bit, but overall, the layout and elements are pretty much the same. Isn't it gorgeous?

We used two punches and three sets of Framelits on this one card. The other card, which I will show you tomorrow, only used one set of Framelits, but it took NINE different punches! Did that pique your curiousity? Check back tomorrow and see what we made!

STAMPS: Happy Watercolor, Papillon Potpourri, You're Lovely (FREE Sale-A-Bration set!)
CARDSTOCK: Very Vanilla, Rich Razzleberry, Pink Pirouette, Watercolor Paper
INK: StazOn Jet Black, Rich Razzleberry, Pink Pirouette, Pear Pizzazz Stampin' Write Marker
ACCESSORIES: Big Shot, Ovals Collection Framelits, Deco Labels Framelits, Banners Framelits Dies, Bitty Butterfly Punch, 1-3/4" Circle Punch, Brights Candy Dots, Blender Pens, Stampin' Dimensionals

Thursday, February 6, 2014

Happy Birthday to....

....ME!  Yep, today I am another year older, and it's one of those darn milestone birthdays, too.  You know, the ones that mean the passing of yet another decade, which makes you feel really old decrepit ancient fortunate to have survived this long! Which milestone is it? Well, let's just say it's one score and seven less than Lincoln's Gettysburg address and leave it at that, okay?

Am I depressed? Oh, HECK no! I'm amazed I've made it as long as I have, and besides, 60 is the new 40, right? (Oops.) And, honestly, I still feel like I'm in my thirties, so it's all good!
From Millan.Net
Now, if I was upset about it, which I'm not, I'd love to get a card like this one:

Isn't it just the sweetest, cheeriest thing you ever saw? The Watercolor Wonder Designer Notecards are adorable, and all you have to do is stamp something quick and send it! The background color is already on the note cards, and it's sturdy watercolor paper, too, so you can watercolor to your heart's content without worrying about the paper getting all wonky. Plus, you get 20 assorted cards (4 ea. of 5 designs) and envelopes for just $12.95! Such a deal!!!

The tulips from Blessed Easter was used here (without the greeting), because they were the closest thing I could find to buttercups. Stamped it once, used the Happy Watercolor "wash" stamp and then colored the leaves with a marker. Then stamped again on scrap watercolor paper and colored the flowers and leaves with markers, cut them out and adhered them with dimensionals.

The greeting is from Geometrical, another fun set in the Occasions catalog. (Remember, if you need one, let me know!)

Accessories: Stampin' Dimensionals (no Mr. Big, this time, can you believe it?!)

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Banner Blast Thanks & Mystery Hostess

I have a very sweet customer that I haven't yet met face-to-face (Hi, Linda!), who is relatively new to stamping, and it delights me no end to send her little cards to spark her creativity! It's the next best thing to sitting down with her and showing her all the tips and tricks I've learned since I started stamping five years ago.  Though, oh how I wish I could do that!

She earned some free Sale-A-Bration items with her last order, so the thank you card I sent used some of the items she received.  Gotta show her how to use those goodies, right?

This was a quick, simple card and uses a classic color combination - red, black and white. Because I added the Silver Fancy Foil Designer Vellum, I made the base card Smoky Slate to pick up the silver color a bit.  The Banner Blast stamp set and matching Banner Punch are FREE Sale-A-Brstion items tht you can earn with a qualifying purchase. For every $50 in merchandise you order (pre-tax/SH), you can choose one of the fabulous free items from the SAB flyer.  If you don't have the flyer, let me know so I can get one right out to you!

This week I'm having a catalog party, and anyone who places an order by Sunday night (9:00 PM Pacific) will be entered for the drawing to determine who gets the hostess benefits from the party! That's FREE hostess dollars to spend on whatever you want!

If you want to get in on the fun, you can call or email me, or order directly from my Stampin' Up web site and use Hostess Code H6UVFVDK at check out!

Remember, to be entered in the hostess drawing, you must order by Sunday night. I'll draw the name and notify the winner that night so she can choose her goodies.

Stamps: Banner Blast
Cardstock: Whisper White, Real Red, Smoky Slate, Silver Fancy Foil Designer Vellum
Ink: Basic Black, Real Red
Accessories: Stampin' Trimmer, Banner Punch, White Baker's Twine, Rhinestones Basic Jewels

Sunday, February 2, 2014

Super Bowl Musings

One of my downline had a birthday this past week, and she is a HUGE Denver Broncos fan. (Go 'Hawks!)  So, I made her birthday card in her favorite team's colors, as much as I could, and much as it pained me, lol.

Why am I cheering for the Seahawks? Well, several reasons....
  1. My BFF Barb is rooting for them. Don't really need more reason than that, but...
  2. My dear departed daddy was a Seahawks fan, and I know he would have been tickled to see them make it to the Super Bowl for their second time. (I miss you Daddy!)
  3. The Mannings. I have a distinct dislike for Archie and Eli, after the unprofessional crap they pulled when the Chargers drafted Eli ten years ago. So, Peyton is tainted just by being a Manning. Yes, I will admit that he is one of the best quarterbacks of all time, but he's still a Manning. (Said like Seinfeld says Newman, lol.)
  4. I have to keep the friendly rivalry going between me and my downline!
 So, what is on the menu at your house for the big game?

Stamps: Peaceful Petals, Gifts of Kindness (greeting)
Cardstock: Whisper White, Midnight Muse, Tangerine Tango, Watercolor Paper, Sweet Sorbet DSP, Midnight Muse DSP (2013-2105 In Color DSP Stack)
Ink: Jet Black StazOn, Calypso Coral, Tangering Tango, Old Olive
Accessories: Big Shot, Starburst Framelits, 2-1/2" Circle Punch, Aqua Painter, Pearls Basic Jewels

Saturday, February 1, 2014

Petite Petals X 4

This was a quick, fun card that we made at the Occasions/Sale-A-Bration party last weekend:

But after the guests left, I wanted to make one that was a little bit fancier. I added rhinestones to the flowers, and that helped somewhat:

But I still thought it needed something "more", so then I added a mat behind the polka-dot DSP to make it pop, added some subtle blossoms on the white (after stamping off on scratch paper), and stamped the greeting in black.  I think that helped a lot!

And then.......
I had to try that layout in a different color!

So, what do you think? I could have kept going with different colors and themes, but thought that was enough for now.  I'll play around with that sketch again soon, I'm sure!

It is very easy to make layers for the Scalloped Tag Topper Punch. I started with the colored cardstock cut 2" x 3-3/4".  The white cardstock is cut 1-7/8" x 3-5/8". Just make sure the white cardstock is centered in the punch when you punch it! (And use the sanding block to round the edges a bit.)

Stamps: Petite Petals, Yippee-Skippee!, Perfect Pennants
Cardstock: Whisper White, Coastal Cabana, Bermuda Bay, Crisp Cantaloupe, Calypso Coral
Ink: Bermuda Bay, Pool Party, Gumball Green, Calypso Coral, Old Olive, Basic Black
Accessories: Scalloped Tag Topper Punch, Petite Petals Punch, Whisper White 5/8" Organza Ribbon, Bermuda Bay 1/8" Taffeta Ribbon, Old Olive 1/8" Taffeta Ribbon, Rhinestones Basic Jewels, Stampin' Sanding Block (to round corners at top of white cardstock), Stampin' Dimensionals