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Saturday, December 31, 2016

Winter Cardinal

Water color blues & grays background

I love cardinals.  I think it is because of the startling red color of the males in the stark winter snow scape.  Lovely . . . .

This by far though, is my favorite bird stamp!  You can get it here:

This was so pretty in person. I don't know why the lace
looks lumped but it wasn't & the card showed through
it.  The background was embossed with a clear
powder that has limited shimmer & sparkle. Subtle
but stunning in person!  The die cut star had a bit of
yellow water color on the inside & was then covered
in prisma glitter. It was then placed on a slightly
sparkling blue lace card stock
After stamping it and coloring it a couple of ways (water color background, vs water color cut out)  decided that I was obsessed with fussy cutting the whole thing and putting on different backgrounds!  I loved the simplicity of the snow scape at the bottom & use the stitched edge dies from Frantic Stamper (
The red ribbon of paper is Peddlar's Pack Snow Flurry, stamped with white ink, cut to size & scalloped on one side. Then layered over a dark brown.  The background stamp is Stampin Up!'s  French Script in dark brown on Craft.  I love the natural element of this card but wanted just a bit of bling so I added the red sequins

    On this one I decided to try a wood grain embossing folder. This one is from  Tim Holtz ALTERATIONS. I inked the inside with several shades of green. After it was embossed I took a brown ink pad and rubbed across the raised areas.  Then a simple tag heat embossed with white branches, attached with brass brads holding the die cut sentiment JOY found at one of my favorite web sites 
I layered ivory and olive ribbon beneath it putting that panel on top of a dark brown ~ pinking one edge & then onto cranberry cardstock.  I think this one is almost my favorite!!

Because I'm not a great photographer, here's what you can't see, but made a big difference in the finished product: 
1) All of the snow on the branches was covered with the Smooch Pearlized Top Coat
2) The berries were colored with 2 or 3 shades of red & orange
4) Each bird was lifted by dimensional tape (the star was flat against the background)
5) The background of the die cut "JOY" was heat embossed with Ivory branches.  I wanted to keep the clean look but didn't want a large blank space either.
6) The backgrounds shimmered like a cold sky behind the birds ~ I just loved the effect!

Tuesday, December 27, 2016

Label's for Homemade Gifts

Hello everyone!  I'm sending out more Christmas Greetings!!  I hope you had a wonderfully refreshing and relaxing holiday season.  BUT !!! If that didn't quite happen and you're Christmas season was more like mine {Busy beyond belief with no time to think!!}  then you may be left in the backwash wondering where the time went and realizing that you've forgotten a friend or two! 
Well sisters, it's not too late and without feeling like you're running that frantic race, here's an idea to help you spend some quiet time crafting and even "cooking" alone or with someone you love (kids will really love surprising someone with this after Christmas gift idea).

The gift idea I've implemented for years is the warm hug of Gourmet Cocoa on a chilli Winter's day!  Here's how I do it ~ it is so fun and relaxing & because it is post Christmas there is no pressure to have it delivered "on time".  Recipients will just love that they've been thought of for no "reason!!"

For the jars I use anything with a lid!  I also really like glass because you can see the chocolaty goodness inside! I've used left over jars of all different shapes and sizes.  When I'm lucky enough to come across cute decorative jars and snap them up (like these!)
I like to make up names for the mix
and use a couple of circle punches
to add a label to the top. 
I use a simple (& really old) Word program to print out labels in the
fonts I like.  I print them on card stock and cut them out as needed

Add an extra layer of warmth by rubbing the edges of all of the tags with antique colored ink.  I also think for a brighter, more modern look colored inks would work great.

The Snowman Soup Stamp is a garage sale find, but I'm sure you could print out the same thing using the font you like best - & in a size that fits your jar. Click the photos to enlarge if you'd like to use the poem.

Punch or die cut labels and stamp with something Wintery and good! I think the options are endless.  Base it on how much time you like spending with your rubber stamps and coloring, which of course is an option & not a requirement!

For my labels I mostly used a straight
edge cutter leaving extra length which
I then inserted into a punch.
Ta-da! Custom shapes!!

When gluing together the labels for a curved
surface, roll and bend them AS THEY ARE
DRYING. They will stay on the jar much
better and won't pucker when you go to
bend them later
Layer as many or as few of labels and "dangles" as you'd like.  Then top off the whole thing with a strip of fabric as the ribbon.  I love the way the unfinished edges fray.  Regular ribbon works great for this too.  I just like the more rustic look!

For inside the Jar. . .  If you don't have a secret family recipe for the cocoa, feel free to use a purchased cocoa and "specialize" it by putting it in a blender with something yummy. Crushed hard candies like peppermint, cinnamon, or a tablespoon of Jello Pudding in flavors like caramel, vanilla, etc make the cocoa unique & customized. 

Your friends and family will love this warm winter hug, great for giving even past Saint Valentine's Day!

Merry Christmas!

The Christmas Card I made for my adult teen daughter.  MERRY CHRISTMAS MADISON!

Hello, I hope you are enjoying the after glow of Christmas. I know we are.  Now that all of the pressure and excitement is over there is finally time to lay on the rug in front of the fire and play board games, color, read . . .  I love Christmas!

In case you're noticing the shorts we worked on these this Autumn!! They have to be sent off a little early. I'm a little late with the posting!!
My daughter and nieces made Christmas cards for US Sailors overseas.  (Thanks to Carrie Lee-Walden on the Unity Show & Tell Facebook page, who collects them & sends them off)

I am so proud of their generous hearts and I wanted to share their beautiful creations with you.

I hope each year you find your self more profoundly touched by the message and meaning of Christmas. Our family wishes you 'Glad Tidings' and above all Love.  Merry Christmas! 

An inspiration for you:
My nieces had never rubber stamped before and LOOK what a beautiful job they did!!  If you've been afraid to give stamping or card making a try I hope these beautiful creations will inspire you to give it a try.  Ask a friend who you know has some supplies (she'll be thrilled to have a partner) and you'll find yourself having a wonderful afternoon.


All images stamped can be found at

Saturday, December 10, 2016

Frosty Fields

Good morning friends!  Did you wake up to deep, fluffy, frosty snow this week?  We sure did!  It is beautiful !!!(unless you have to drive in it!)

Well here is another frosty, cold card inspiration.  I am hooked on this masking and layering technique! And it's so easy, I hope you'll find fun in doing it too :)

First I round punched a piece of paper for a mask and put it in the position on my cardstock that I would want the sun (or moon - depends on how you're looking at it!)  Making sure that it does not move I began rubbing color around it with a sponge tip blender (I think a cotton ball or some other means to quietly smear color will work just as well).

Make sure the circle will not be moved. you can use a repositionable adhesive on the back of the circle to help with this. I used several colors of blue and gradually darkened the horizon line and stayed light higher above.  Once satisfied with the colors and blending, remove the paper circle.   

Now get out some darker inks and begin stamping in the "weeds".  I used the second and third generation ink (stamping again and again without re-inking) to create depth.  Oh, you'll be so excited in how this begins to come together!!!

I then die cut birds out of some paper I'd just randomly water colored. With dimensional tape, perch a bird (mine are from Impression Obsession) on a stem or maybe cut out a fancy label or banner with a sentiment instead!!  I also die cut the frame from "Memory Box's Frostyville Frame" and frosted it with glitter.

Attach it all in layers on coordinating card stock & base and done! I really hope you try it out - it is great instant gratification!!

I stamped this several times because I just love the look.  With this one I did the dryer sheet technique of  glittering the entire background.  I added some yellow to the outer rim of the moon to make it show up more through the layer of fabric and glitter over it.  I also decided it was all too faint and stamped some of the weeds over the top of the dryer sheet.  I love the results! 

Have fun and share your ideas and creations in the comments below :)

Wednesday, December 7, 2016

Winter Frost Papers

Hello Friends!  Just some fun wintery inspiration for you.  This card is made from the Stampin' Up! Designer Series Paper " Winter Frost ".  I layered bars of my favorites onto black cardstock and laid  that over a pure white card base. 
A  lace border was punched from the front bottom edge only.  I then put a blue ribbon under a sheer ribbon both with banner cut ends.  The sentiment was stamped and embossed on a die cut label whose edges were rubbed with shades of blue ink.  Add 2 gems for accents and "Ta-Da!!" a beautiful, Wintery card!!

Friday, November 4, 2016

Enter to win with SCRAPBOOK.COM !! !!

Who Couldn't Use an extra $2,500 crafting dollars???  FOLLOW THIS LINK FOR YOUR CHANCES TO WIN!!  (if you win I'll even share it with you!!)

Sunday, October 30, 2016

The Hop to Stop 2016 - Raising Awareness for Domestic Violence

Please check out this important blog hop to Stop Domestic Violence! Visit The Damsel of Distressed for all of the details and to link your own card!

{{You see, purple is the color of National Domestic Violence Awareness month. 
1 in 3 women will experience domestic violence over the course of their lifetimes. 
Let that sink in - 33% of all the women you meet. 

Women between the ages of 15 and 44 are more likely to be injured or die as a result of domestic violence, than through rapes, muggings and car accidents combined.

And women aren't the only people who are affected! Women, men, transgender - gender doesn't matter. Domestic violence is something that exists regardless of gender, socioeconomic status, religion, education level, etc.}}

(taken directly from the Damsel of Distressed "Hop to Stop" posting)

Friday, October 28, 2016

Creating Custom Plaid Papers

Have you noticed with the onset of Fall all the new plaid papers that are coming out?  I am one of those people that is crazy about plaids. I just LOVE them!! Unfortunately I rarely am able to find papers that are not only the colors I want but also the pattern of plaid I like! 

If you truly love stamping (like I do!!) this might be the time to start making your own plaid papers.  The following is a picture tutorial on creating your own  designs. Click on the pictures to enlarge them & make reading the notes on them easier.

Also, unless you plan to make your lines with a ruler, or free hand, you'll want a "plaid builder" stamp set. I'm sure there are many out there.  Here's one of the sets carried by Papertrey Ink

The stamp set I am using is Retired (Long ago!) by Stampin' Up!

To make your lines evenly apart make incremental marks at the top, bottom & sides of your paper and line up with the stamp lines on the imaging sheet. Once your first lines are in they become your guide to the next stamping lines.  If you need to extend the size beyond the size of your stamps the best way to keep there from being a line across your finished work is to stagger up & down your original lines so that the stamped connection is scattered through your piece.

I extended the length of the stamps above as an after thought. You can see how I ended all of the edges in the same line.  Although careful as I stamped the line becomes more apparent. Staggering where the end of the stamp falls would eliminate this linear distraction

If you aren't sure how far apart or what colors or line patterns to use making your plaid, find one you like. . . . in a book, on line, maybe your favorite blanket or shirt.  Have it nearby and stamp the elements from that as you go.  It's limitless how many ways & colors you can stamp them!  It is also a good idea to identify & use the colors in your favorite papers.  Then they are always sure to match!

Thursday, October 27, 2016

Feline Fun

Here's a fun kitty stamp from Unity Stamp Company "Meow Meow Meow"

I just love the sweet little glasses.  I think it says a lot about this little cat's perr-sonality!! 

Everyday Cat Sentiments Mini Stamp Set  
The whole set of feline saying is only $5 !!  I think they are all such fun!

                        The sentiment I used is
                          from Papertrey Ink.
                    Click the pictures to enlarge

Inside I used 4 different stamps to get the sentiment I wanted!!!  The main body of the sentiment  was individually inked and stamped. I purposely left off the "Autumn" portion of it which is positioned at the top of the stamp.  I used a stamp positioner to place the words (each from a different stamp!!) "have" & "a".  Then I lined up the "PURR-FECT" part of the sentiment in the Unity set, selectively coloring & stamping it.  THEN (whew!) I stamped the word "Autumn" at the very bottom of the sentiment!

Luckily it all lined up & I really like the results.  I wanted an Autumn just because (or maybe "Just Be-claws") card & I really wanted to use my new cat stamp, so this made it all tie together for me!

For fun I usually try to finish the back and inside of all my cards.  This one was so quick & simple and I love the way it makes it feel that much more special to the recipient.

Luckily, I already had some die cut leaves on hand because last night the bearings went out in my Big Shot.  :(  Absolute awfulness!  To make the things I normally used the Big Shot for: I drew in the stitching around the large background and traced one of my dies & cut it out by hand for the plaid cameo.  Not having access to my dies also encouraged me to check out my punches. Making the leafy vine was super fast with my Martha Stewart border punch!
I'll have to remember to look at them more often!!

Tomorrow I hope to blog how to make your own plaid backgrounds like the one I used as a cameo behind our cute little cat.

In case you've missed it I shared an easy way to color the die cut leaves and a super simple way to pop them up without a lot of fuss.  I've been having a lot of fun using them out of my stash for the last couple of weeks!! See blogs from October 2016 "Water Color Leaves" & "Making Small Die Cuts Pop-Up"

Saturday, October 22, 2016


Oh my, do I ever love my green eyed kitty.  She grew up in my plant pots (literally!!)  Her name is October.  Her Mom is a Siamese with bright blue eyes & father was a blue eyed calico, Siamese cross.  We always look forward to the kittens! Not only precious, but the array of fur & eye color is exciting to find out!   

As my Autumn bulbs arrive and as I'm dutifully dividing my iris, etc. October's first kittens play in the dirt and chase the clods as I dig!  They get in the way of the shovel and walk all over my hands so that I can't see what I'm doing!!  I have to chuckle & often give them a squeeze (which also really slows me down, but oh well ~ such is life!)

One of the barn kitties hanging out at the house while I garden

October & her kitten enjoying the spot of dirt right where I need to dig!!