Sunday, August 31, 2014

Winners Announced!

Woohoo, the winners have been chosen! For the Blog candy from my Six Years post, the random number generator picked number 2 and Loralee Parish was the second commenter, so she's the winner! Loralee, please email your mailing address so I can send your prize! Congratulations!

And the random name picker (aka my husband, Tom) drew Liliana Tincher's name for the Mystery Hostess. Congrats, Lili!!! I'll send you a text in a minute.

Thanks to everyone who participated!

Thursday, August 28, 2014

Holiday Catalog Now Live!

You've been seeing some sneak peeks from the Holiday Catalog for the past few weeks, and today is the day you can order from the catalog yourself! If you don't have a catalog, click the link on the left to see a PDF version, or let me know if you want a paper copy, and I'll send it right out!

These are some of the projects from inside the catalog, made by the fabulous Stampin' Up! artists (what a dream job that must be!).

There is still time to get in on the Mystery Hostess party that will close Saturday night. If you want to be in the drawing to be the hostess and get the benefits, place an order by Saturday night and use Hostess Code EJFSCUB7.  Everyone's name goes in the basket, a name will be drawn and winner will be announced Sunday morning!

Monday, August 25, 2014


Today marks my sixth blogaversary. Wait, what? Six years? Really?! It doesn't seem that long, at all. I had absolutely no idea what I was doing or where I would be going when I started this blog. I must say, though, I've thoroughly enjoyed the learning process, and most of all, the new friends I've made (both my e-friends, and the ones I've actually had the pleasure of meeting!).

There was a lovely surprise from Stampin' Up! in my mailbox today, too -- my Five-Year pin along with a nice congratulations letter from Shelli Gardner! I love being a part of this wonderful company!

So, to celebrate six years of blundering along fabulous, creative content, I'm giving away some blog candy. Just leave a comment telling me which project you liked the most, or how I've inspired you in some way, and you will be entered in the drawing. Because postage makes shipping outside the U.S. cost-prohibitive, I'm sorry I must limit the winner to a U.S. address. (But if you're outside the U.S., I'd still love to hear what inspired you!)

So, what is the candy? It's the clear-mount Summer Silhouettes stamp set and a roll of Lost Lagoon 3/8" Stitched Satin Ribbon!

Also, the Holiday Catalog launch is this Thursday, and I have Mystery Hostess party that will close Sunday Aug. 31st. If you want to be in the drawing to be the Mystery Hostess and receive the hostess benefits, just place an order by Saturday night, and use Hostess Code EJFSCUB7. Even if you don't win, I'll still send you a little thank you for your order!

Winners of the Mystery Hostess (for placing an order using the Hostess Code) and blog candy (for leaving a comment on this post) will be picked Sunday at 9:00 AM Pacific and contacted. Winning hostess has until 9:00 PM Sunday to let me know what she wants to spend the hostess dollars on, or winnings will be forfeit. I need to place the order that night, so I can't wait!

STAMP: Sweetbriar Rose
CARDSTOCK: Whisper White, White Vellum, Silver Glimmer Paper (retired)
INK: VersaMark, plus Melon Mambo, Old Olive, and Daffodil Delight Blendabilities Assortments

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Simply Elegant Tour de Freaks

Welcome to the August 2014 Tour de Freaks! Our theme this month is "Simple & Elegant", meaning something not too difficult, but still stylish. If you started at the beginning and have hopped in order, the you just landed here from the awesome Judy DiScipio's blog. If you started here, just click the link at the bottom of each blog to take the whole tour - there are fifteen of us this month!

In keeping with the theme, I made two simple cards using stamps from the Holiday Catalog that starts August 28th. First up is a pretty Thanksgiving (or even Thank You) card using the For All Things stamp set. I love the watercolor feel of it! I stamped the background behind the leaves in Hello Honey. The leaves were stamped in Baked Brown Sugar and Soft Suede. Then I borrowed a greeting from Truly Grateful because I wanted it to fit on the 1/2" strip of So Saffron.

STAMPS: For All Things, Truly Grateful  CARDSTOCK: Whisper White, So Saffron, Champagne Glimmer Paper  INK: Hello Honey, Baked Brown Sugar, Soft Suede, Early Espresso  ACCESSORIES: Gold Basic Metal Buttons, Gold Sequin Trim, Gold Baker's Twine, Venetian Crochet Trim

Next is a Christmas card using Letterpress Winter. In the catalog, it shows the stamp I used coordinates with the 2" Circle Punch, but I found it works with the Floral Frames Framlits, too! I've admired door cards for a while, and the image reminded me of a wreath, so I stamped on Pear Pizzazz cardstock with Mossy Meadow ink, and cut it out with the Framelit. That bow is the luscious Real Red 3/8" Satin Woven Ribbon on page 15. LOVE IT!

STAMPS: Letterpress Winter, Project Life by Stampin' Up! Holiday Cheer  CARDSTOCK: Whisper White, Pear Pizzazz, Mossy Meadow  INK: Mossy Meadow  ACCESSORIES: Big Shot, Floral Frames Framelits, Real Red 3/8" Satin Woven Ribbon, Cherry Cobbler Dazzling Details, Neutral Candy Dots

That's it from me today. Thank you so much for stopping by! Next on the tour is LeeAnn Greff's blog. I'm sure she's going to wow you with her projects!

Monday, August 18, 2014

Another Baby Girl!

I forgot to post this card a few weeks ago, so I'm fixing that oversight right now! This was the card I made for my cousin's daughter, who gave her her first granddaughter last month. The baby's name is Ivy Ray (isn't that beautiful?), so I thought the greeting from Ray of Sunshine was perfect! I found the inspiration for it on Pinterest from a card by LeeAnn Pugliese.

My cousin, Shaundra, is so blessed. Here's a quick back story: She had triplets about 28 years ago - two girls and a boy. Well, her two daughters got married in a double wedding, and then got pregnant within a couple months of each other. Up to this point, Shaundra had three grandsons, but no granddaughters. Wouldn't you know it - the girls found out they were expecting girls! One of them just had her TWINS last week (card already posted). So the count is even now - 3 boys and 3 girls! I'm so happy for her!

STAMPS: Ray of Sunshine, Kinda Eclectic, Perfect Pennants, Pictogram Punches, Papillon Potpourri
CARDSTOCK: Whisper White, Pink Pirouette
INK: Rose Red, Pink Pirouette, Melon Mambo Blendabilites (colored pearls)
ACCESSORIES: Big Shot, Circles Collection Framelits, Fancy Fan and Delicate Designs embossing folders, Essentials Paper-Piercing Pack, Itty Bitty Accents Punch Pack, 5/8" Organza Ribbon, Pearls Basic Jewels

Saturday, August 16, 2014

Welcome Baby Girls

Yes, you read that right - that's girl times two! This card was made for my cousin's daughter and son-in-law, who just welcomed Mila and Monroe into the world.  When I was looking for inspiration for a suitable baby card, I found the most adorable card in the entire world. Even though it's from six years ago, it's perfection, so I just CASEd it pretty much as is, using what I had on hand.

Again, I had to rely on retired stamps, because I don't have that many occasions to make baby cards (darn it!), so I can't justify the expense of a new baby set every year.  I was blown away by the detail on the original card, and I don't know if you can se it very well here. The scored cardstock made to resemble wainscoting, and the brad "pegs" with the wire hangers just slay me! I hope Karissa and Derek get a kick out of it, too!

STAMPS: Baby Bundle (retired), Party Time (greeting, retired), Baby Tees Jumbo Stampin' Around Wheel (retired)
CARDSTOCK: Whisper White, Pink Pirouette, So Saffron, Subtles DSP Stack
INK: Memento Tuxedo Black, VersaMark, plus Pretty in Pink (retired) and Daffodil Delight Stampin Write Markers
ACCESSORIES: Simply Scored scoring tool, glimmer brads (non-SU), Hung Up Cute Clips (retired), Whisper White 3/8" Taffeta Ribbon (retired, colored w/marker), Large Oval Punch, Stampin' Dimensionals

Friday, August 15, 2014

For a Very Special Little Guy

Being the girly-girl that I am, and being that I love flowers, and butterflies, and unicorns, and shiny squirrels, and being that my baby boy is 37 years old and my grandson is 13, I don't have very many occasions to make a card for little guys. (Whew, almost ran outta air there for a minute!) Therefore I don't have any (current) stamp sets that are appropriate. Soooo, to make a short story long, I had to use a retired stamp set to make this card. It's called Cool Kid, and it's a cool stamp set. I was sorry to see it go, because that super hero dog just tickles my funny bone!

My cousin's daughter had twin girls a couple days ago, just three days after her little boy turned three years old. I think he's going to make an awesome big brother, and will take very good care of his baby sisters. I know everyone makes a big deal about babies and mama, and sometimes older siblings can feel left out. So after I made the congrats card for mama and daddy, I made this card for the big brother. When he opens it, a big red star pops up, and it says BIG brother. I hope it makes him smile!

STAMPS: Cool Kid (retired), Kinda Eclectic, Back to Basics Alphabet (not shown)
CARDSTOCK: Whisper White, Real Red, Silver Glimmer Paper
INK: StazOn Jet Black, So Saffron, plus Real Red, Pacific Point, and Basic Black Stampin' Write Markers
ACCESSORIES: Big Shot, Circles Collection Framelits, Stars Framelits, Lucky Stars embossing folder, Real Red 1/4" Cotton Ribbon, Itty Bitty Accents Punch Pack, 2" Circle Punch, 2-1/2" Circle punch, Stampin' Dimensionals

Thursday, August 14, 2014

White Christmas Joy

As soon as I saw this stamp set in the Holiday Catalog, I knew it had to be near the top of my wish list. It has everything needed to build a beautiful, whimsical winter scene, down to the littlest detail. This is a photoploymer set, too, so it's super easy to place the image exactly where you want it, because the stamps are totally clear.

First of all, I adore bears, especially polar bears. I love birds, too, and the two tiny Cardinals are so cute. And a snowman? Don't even get me started on how much I love snowmen! So, as you can see, this set really, really appeals to me.

From Millan.Net

After stamping the trees on Whisper White, I stamped again on a large sticky note making sure the hill was near the sticky part. I used it as a mask when I spritzed the sky. (Fill Stampin' Spritzer to within 1/2" of top with rubbing alcohol, then add 6 drops of Lost Lagoon refill ink.) Three or four sprays is all it takes.

While the sky dried, I stamped and fussy-cut the bear. Since the spray was largely alcohol, it dried quickly, so I colored the tree trunks with Smoky Slate using a Blender Pen. I then added a few swipes of the 2-way Glue Pen and Dazzling Diamonds to the hill and tree branches. (When dry, it helps to brush off the loose glitter with a soft brush.)

That's it for another sneak peek from the Holiday Catalog. Stay tuned for more in the coming days! There's another polar bear in the works.

STAMPS: White Christmas, Good Greetings

CARDSTOCK: Whisper White, Lost Lagoon, Pool Party, All Is Calm Specialty DSP
INK: Memento Tuxedo Black, Lost Lagoon, Smoky Slate
ACCESSORIES: 2-Way Glue Pen, Dazzling Diamonds Stampin' Glitter, Frosted Sequins, Lost Lagoon 3/8" Silky Taffeta Ribbon, Stampin' Dimensionals, Stampin' Spritzers, Blender Pens, Linen Thread, Jewelry Tag Punch (retired)

Wednesday, August 13, 2014


Stampin' Up! just released a new photopolymer set called Yee-Haw that is, hands down, cuter than a speckled pup! If you have a little buckaroo or buckarette (is that a word?) or even a big one in your life, if you live on a ranch, or just wish that you did, then this is the set for you!

Here are some ideas from the fabulous concept artists at Stampin' Up!

See those cute circles? That's not a stamp! It's the dots mask (from the Dots & Stripes Decorative Masks) - just use the pen tip from a Stampin' Write Marker to trace a circle in each spot, then add cross-hatch marks!

That's just a few of the ca-UTE things you can do with this set! Get it while the getting's good, and then share a link to your creation in the comments below. I'd LOVE to see what you do with it!

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Beauty of the Season

Did you know that this is a stamp that YOU can pre-order from the Holiday Catalog? It's true! If you absolutely can't wait until August 28th, and you just HAVE to get something from the new catty, Beauty of the Season just might hold you over until it's all available!

The Cardinal was stamped on Watercolor Paper with StazOn Jet Black. After moistening the paper with an Aqua Painter, a Lost Lagoon wash was applied. While the background was drying, the bird was painted using Real Red. Baked Brown Sugar was used on the branches, and Real Red again on the berries. I did find I lost some of the detail on the face when I stamped it, and the eye kind of disappeared. So I took a black Sharpie to the smallest size of Basic Pearls and added a beady little eye! I swear, it looks like it's looking at me!

I need to work on my watercoloring skills a bit. Unfortunately, I didn't wait long enough for the sky background to dry before I started painting the branches and berries, so the ink ran a bit. Although that can be a lovely effect for some projects, it wasn't really the effect I was going for here. Oh well, live and learn. (Patience is a virtue - something I'm still working on, lol.)

 STAMPS: Beauty of the Season, Good Greetings
CARDSTOCK: Whisper White, Brushed Gold, Real Red, Watercolor Paper
INK: StazOn Jet Black, Real Red, Lost Lagoon, Daffodil Delight
ACCESSORIES: Aqua Painter, Gold Basic Metal Buttons, Real Red 1/4" Cotton Ribbon

Friday, August 8, 2014

Shiny Squirrels

Okay, this card was completely unplanned and just sort of happened. As I was going through my Box of Awesomeness (aka Stampin' Up! preorder goodies), I was struck by how much the Note Tag Punch reminded me of a tombstone (shiny squirrel moment). I guess I had Halloween on the brain, which is really weird, because Thanksgiving and Christmas are much more my style.

Anyhoo, I don't have any current Halloween stamps, with the exception of a couple of small images on the Holiday Home and Holiday Invitation sets. Hmmmm, what to do, what to do.......

Then I remembered I had a bunch of componenets left over from the September My Paper Pumpkin kit I got at convention. There were some awesome stickers and equally fabulous copper-colored sequin trim with black twine that I knew would be perfect for the card!

I sponged a vivid sunset, stamped the RIP on the headstone using the Back to Basics Aplphabet and threw it all together. Turned out pretty well, I think, for being totally unplanned. I swear, Halloween was channeling through me, saying it wanted some attention, too!
From Millan.Net
Now, as for this My Paper Pumpkin kit - trust me, you don't want to miss out on it! It has burlap treat bags to decorate with die-cut tags and some fab photopolymer stamps, along with the stickers, twine and sequins. And there will be plenty left over from the treat bags to make some cute cards like this one!

There's a special going on right now, too! If you sign up for My Paper Pumpkin, you get your first two months for 50% off! That's just $10.00 per month to have awesome project kits delivered right to your door! Be sure to enter the promo code HALFOFF2 when you sign up, and I'd be ever so grateful if you name me as your demonstrator! Sign up before Sep. 10th to get the discount, and the Halloween kit I used here!

STAMPS: Back to Basics Alphabet, Holiday Home (bats), Holiday Invitation (greeting)
CARDSTOCK: Basic Black, Whisper White, Basic Gray, Smoky Slate
INK: So Saffron, Pumpkin Pie, Cajun Craze, Memento Tuxedo Black, Smoky Slate, Whisper White Craft
ACCESSORIES: Note Tag Punch, Heat Tool, White Stampin' Emboss Powder, Stampin' Sponges, Sponge Daubers, September Paper Pumpkin Kit (trees and crow stickers, black twine, copper sequin trim)

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Peace & Joy Christmas Bauble

I think this is the last Christmas Bauble card for the time being. I've really enjoyed coming up with different creations using that a la cart stamp, and have even more ideas floating around in my noggin. But yesterday my box of Holiday Catalog preorder goodies arrived from Stampin' Up! and now I have new shiny squirrels to distract me!!!

From Millan.Net

This was pretty straighforward coloring, using the Stampin' Blendabilities markers again. The bauble was stamped with Memento Tuxedo Black ink, so it wouldn't "bleed" with the alcohol markers. Then I just used the Cherry Cobbler and Old Olive markers to color, along with a bit of Smoky Slate for the ornament hanger. Old Olive and Pear Pizzazz DSP along with a Tea Lace Paper Doily help to highlight the ornament, and the the white gel pen added some shine to the berries.

Even with the strip of Real Red chevron DSP, I still felt it needed something more, so I got out the Stampin' Pierce Mat and Essentials piercing templates to add some faux stitching. Much easier than dragging out my dusty sewing machine! And didja notice? NO Mr. Big anywhere in sight! *gasp!* The ornament was fussy-cut and the circles and banner ends were punched; no die cuts, no embossing folders!

Okay, I've yakked enough - now I need to play with my new toys! If you don't hear from me in a few days, send in a recscue team with some chocolate and coffee, will ya?

From Millan.Net
From Millan.Net

STAMPS: Christmas Bauble, Good Greetings (from upcoming hostess promotion - stay tuned!)

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

Christmas Bauble with Blendabilities

Here is the other heat embossed, Blendabilities-colored Christmas Bauble. The grey of the Brushed Silver cardstock toned down the Coastal Cabana Blendies to a near-perfect match of Lost Lagoon - something to keep in  mind for future projects! I've always been fond of silver and blue for Christmas, so this just really appeals to me.

The All Is Calm Specialty DSP colors are Lost Lagoon, Pear Pizzazz, Smoky Slate, and Soft Sky, so that gave me my color choices for the bauble. Since we don't have Pear Pizzazz Blendabilities (yet), I used a Stampin' Write Marker for the holly leaves. The colors are so soft and subtle, Calypso Coral seemed more appropriate for the berries, rather than the deep red of Cherry Cobbler.

I have one more Christmas Bauble project to share, then I'm on to different stamps to color. Have I mentioned latyely how much I love to color? Yes? Well, then maybe you can understand my current obsession with Blendies.
From Millan.Net

STAMPS: Christmas Bauble, Endless Wishes
CARDSTOCK: Whisper White, Lost Lagoon, Brushed Silver, All Is Calm Specialty DSP
INK: VersaMark, Coastal Cabana, Calypso Coral, and Smoky Slate Stampin' Blendabilities, plus Pear Pizzazz Stampin' Write Marker
ACCESSORIES: Big Shot, Perfect Polka-Dots TIEF, Delicate Designs TIEF, Heat Tool, Silver Stampin' Emboss Powder, Lost Lagoon 3/8" Stitched Satin Ribbon, Silver 1/8" Ribbon, Rhinestones Basic Jewels

Monday, August 4, 2014

Monochromatic Christmas Bauble

I've been experimenting with different techniques using the Stampin' Blendabilities, and this was one of the results. I've heat embossed with gold on the Brushed Gold cardstock before, and really loved the look of it, so rich and elegant. But this time I wanted something with more pop, to stand up to adding color with the Blendies, so I tried it with Early Espresso embossing powder. Wow! Definitely more pop!

The Crumb Cake Stampin' Blendabilities were used, and the Bronze and Mocha from the Skin Tone Assortment were also used. Just a fabulous selection of browns!!!

Check back in a day or two, because I did another one in blues with silver embossing on Brushed Silver that I'll be sharing. It looks gorgeous!

STAMPS: Christmas Bauble, Endless Wishes
CARDSTOCK: Baked Brown Sugar, Early Espresso, Brushed Gold, Gold Soiree Specialty DSP
INK: VersaMark, Crumb Cake and Skin Tone Ass't. Stampin' Blendabilities
ACCESSORIES: Big Shot, Oval Collection Framelits, Extra Large Oval Punch, Heat Tool, Early Espresso Stampin' Emboss Powder, Tea Lace Paper Doilies, Early Espresso 1/4" Cotton Ribbon, Stampin' Dimensionals

Sunday, August 3, 2014

Swapping (Again!)

Here is the swap I held back a few days ago, because I had to wait until I was sure my Control Freaks peeps had received theirs. This is soooo much more vivid in real life! The Champagne Glimmer Paper mats behind the sun's face and the sunburst panel really add a lot of sparkle, and the Basic Black makes it pop!

Did you know about the August Big Shot special? If you buy the Big Shot (I love my Mr. Big!), you can choose a bundle of stamp set with matching Framelits (five bundles to choose from) for FREE! And one of them features a stamp set from the new Holiday Catalog, woohoo! (Christmas will be here before you know it!)  If you already own the Big Shot, you can save 15% on just the bundles.

Also, all the Blendabilities color sets are available for purchase now and I have a special offer for you, too! If you buy any of them this month, I will send you my Stampin' Blendabilities Tips and Tricks. It's loaded with helpful hints for getting the most out of your markers, as well as some cool techniques to try! This offer is only good for the month of August, so don't miss out!

STAMPS: Ray of Sunshine, Kinda Eclectic
CARDSTOCK: Whisper White, Basic Black, Hello Honey, Champagne Glimmer Paper, Moonlight DSP Stack
INK: Memento Tuxedo Black, Hello Honey
ACCESSORIES: Big Shot, Arrows TIEF, Hello Honey 3/8" Stitched Satin Ribbon

Friday, August 1, 2014

Showcasing Gold Soiree

This was another swap card, and I think it really shows off the Gold Soiree Specialty DSP. This paper is fahhhhbulous, dahling! Not only does one side of each sheet have a gold design of some sort, but both sides are beautifully glossy. (I'm starting to think about Christmas cards, and this paper is going to get a lot of use, I can tell ya!)

Relying on the patterns in the paper made it really easy to just make the greeting the focus. As a woman of a "certain" age (snort), that greeting just tickles my funny bone, too! It's from the Oh My Goodies stamps set, and all the stamps are made to fit the Deco Labels Framelits Dies. No fussy-cutting needed!

This month Stampin' Up! has a Big Shot promotion going on! Through August 31, get an exclusive Framelits and Stamp Set Bundle for FREE when you purchase a Big Shot. And this stamp set and Framelits bundle is one of them! (Or, if you already own a Big Shot, get a 15 % discount on the selected bundles.) Check it out on my Stampin' Up! website!

STAMP: Oh My Goodies
CARDSTOCK: Garden Green, Whisper White, Gold Soiree Specialty DSP
INK: Calypso Coral
ACCESSORIES: Big Shot, Deco Labels Framelits, Crisp Cantaloupe Thick Baker's Twine