Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Green Living

Hope you're all further along with your holiday to-do list than I am. More things keep getting added to mine! Each time I cross something off the list, two or three things find their way onto it. It looks like I'll be sending out Valentines or maybe even Independence Day cards instead of Christmas cards this year.

Last week, I spent lots of time preparing for a segment which aired last night on the local ABC affiliate KIVI Channel 6. The theme is Green Living. We used all sorts of environmentally-friendly materials like a drink carrier from Sonic, a frosting container, a toilet paper roll, a can of Pears, an old Albertsons grocery bag, a Starbuck's Frappuccino bottle and a brown handled bag from Aveda to create lots of fun wrapping options. The brief article and segment video are linked here.

Happy Holidays!

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Candy Colored Goodness -- and Candy!

I had the chance to borrow this bird stamp recently, and I love how it turned out! I warned my friend that if her stamp is ever missing, she should check my pocket. I know, I know... "Thou shalt not covet thy neighbor's stamps." But in this case, it's warranted, don't you think? This birdie rocks! I stamped several extras to play with later, too.

For this card, since the focal image is stamped on patterned paper, I decided to use the Neenah white for the scalloped edge. And for a little twist, I painted the scallops with Angel Wings Shimmerz. {No need to cover the whole oval since only the little scallops are showing!}

Stamps: Bird Stamp (Unity)
Paper: Classic Crest Solar White 80# Cover Smooth (Neenah); Euphoria PP (BasicGrey)
Paint/Ink: Angel Wings Shimmerz (Shimmering Products); Lilac Posies Memento Dye Ink (Tsukineko)
Accessories: Petite Oval Nestabilities (Spellbinders); Mat Pack & Paper Piercer (Stampin' Up!)

Happy Stamping!

Monday, October 06, 2008

Kraft Cardstock

I don't use a lot Kraft cardstock, but I think that's going to change! I played with some this weekend, and I really like the look of it. Oh, the possibilities!

The stamp used to create the background is the Solid Leaf Spray from The Rubber Café. I couldn't help but notice how strikingly similar it looked to the Making Memories self-adhesive fabric tape from their Fifth Avenue Collection. See for yourself!

Here's a close-up of the Shimmerzed flower. I added Angel Wings Shimmerz to all three layers of the flower. It's so pretty!

Stamp: Solid Leaf Spray (The Rubber Café)
Paper: Generic Kraft, Black & Vanilla Cardstock
Paint/Ink: Angel Wings Shimmerz (Shimmering Products); Tuxedo Black Memento Dye Ink (Tsukineko)
Accessories: Pearl Brads (K&Co.); Fabric Tape (Making Memories); Paper Flowers (Prima Marketing); Threading Water Border Punch (Fiskars)

If you happen to be nearby, the Re:Use Market has announced that its next Open House will take place on October 17 & 18. Check their Web site for more details. If you're able to go, take a bag along... you'll need it! :)

Happy Stamping!

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

News & Happenings

I got my artist's copy of Just Cards! yesterday. This is the first time I've had projects published in this magazine. The four cards they printed are: Starlight, Make the Most of Yourself, Hugs and Kisses, and Valentine Be Mine.

I'm excited to announce that I've joined the design team for The Rubber Café -- I even have a card to share with you. Purple is my favorite color, but I rarely work with it. Why? Well, if I make purple cards, I'll have to use up my purple paper, cardstock, embellishments, etc. I hoard purple stuff like crazy. Do you have the same trouble? (And in case it's not clear in the photo... the card is purple and it was photographed against a light olive background.)

Stamps: African Violets & Words of Faith (The Rubber Café)
Paper: Classic Crest Solar White 80# Cover Smooth (Neenah); Corduroy Textured Cardstock (Bazzill Basics)
Paint/Ink: Angel Wings Shimmerz (Shimmering Products); Tuxedo Black Memento Dye Ink & VersaMark (Tsukineko); Sketch Markers (Copic)
Accessories: Petite Oval Nestabilities (Spellbinders)

Happy Stamping!

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Blog Banner Challenge

As you can see, things are looking a little bit different around here today. I participated in the weekly challenge at Cornish Heritage Farms -- which happened to be to make your own blog banner. This is something that has been on my mind for several weeks, and I was thinking of hiring someone to update it. But how would I advise them on what I want, when I'm not sure what that is exactly?

I started with this card, which I made during the Kim Hughes Blitz over at CHF in June. I scanned it, and then decided I needed a funky font to type in my name and title. I downloaded one of Kim Hughes' fonts, CK Slim Mitch, to match her cool style.

Why not give it a try? I'm glad I did!

Oooh, in other Kim Hughes news, she just released two new stamp sets and they're both super-cute! Birthday Bash and Comforting Hugs are now available.

Happy Stamping!

Friday, September 12, 2008

Shining & Shimmering

There's a big going out of business sale at Mandarin Pixie right now. Prices are VERY low, so check it out. First come, first served.

I wanted to show off the adorable Kim Hughes owl and the birthday card that served as the inspiration for my Cards for Troops challenge on SCS. Cards are still being accepted, so if you have a little extra time to stamp this weekend, please make a few for the troops. They just need to be postmarked by 9/20. Click here for details.

Stamps: U R A Hoot and Tag You're It! by Kim Hughes (Cornish Heritage Farms)
Paper: Classic Crest Solar White 80# Cover Smooth (Neenah); Olive & Gold cardstock (Archiver's); Mellow PP (Basic Grey)
Paint/Ink: Beeswax, Rustic Red, and Sagebrush Limited Edition Shimmerz (Shimmering Products); Rich Cocoa Memento Dye Ink (Tsukineko); Chestnut Roan ColorBox Chalk Ink (Clearsnap); Beige E33 Marker (Copic)

We've all got some fun holidays coming up! Halloween was one of my favorites. Keep your seatbelts fastened for some Halloween blog candy coming soon. :)

Happy Stamping!

Friday, August 15, 2008

Today's the Day!

Big news and some fabulous projects for you to check out today over at the Shimmerz blog! Three new limited edition colors (Beeswax, Rustic Red, and Sagebrush) were released for this fall. Here's a project I made using the Beeswax gold:

His feathers were already paper-pieced in a gorgeous golden color thanks to patterned paper from Scenic Route.

Stamps: America the Beautiful and U R A Hoot by Kim Hughes (Cornish Heritage Farms)
Paper: Classic Crest Solar White 80# Cover Smooth (Neenah); Criss Cross Cardstock in Ladybug (Bazzill); PP from Scenic Route
Paint/Ink: Beeswax Shimmerz (Shimmering Products); Jet Black Archival Ink (Ranger); VersaMagic Chalk Ink in Night Sky (Tsukineko); Cool Grey C01 Marker (Copic)

Now if you happen to have offered blog candy and mailed me this stamp set as a prize, you might see this card in person very soon. :) Thanks, Kim!

Happy Stamping!

Monday, August 11, 2008


It's been a very busy few weeks. Much of the busyness has been related to my husband's surgery. He came through with flying colors (despite his numerous serious chronic health problems) and now we're adjusting to his new life of being able to do more.

Of course, we have some fun crafty busyness, too:
- I appeared on TV! There were two segments on their morning show featuring wedding stationery and BBQ invitations. Hopefully they'll take me up on my offer to demonstrate Christmas card ideas.
- Marianne Walker, whose talent amazes me on a regular basis, gave my blog an award but... more impactfully... said I inspire her. OMG. *humbling moment* Thank you, Marianne! You inspire me, too.
- Shimmerz is coming out with three new limited edition colors on the 15th. Can't wait! You can win the new colors by posting a comment on this blog post.

Oh, and check out the painted Prima flowers a' la Niki Estes. Tres cool.

Happy Stamping!

Thursday, July 03, 2008

Dave, Lila, Susie & Tiffany

Had yet another delightful stamping roadtrip with Lila this past weekend. It rocked!

We decided to spend the night in Twin Falls before heading up to Hailey for our class, and we made good use of our time there.  Unfortunately, we wrapped up our visit after 7:00 p.m. and were unable to visit Scrappin' Girlfriends. {See you next time, Michelle!} We had a sumptuous dinner and then headed to the hotel room where we stamped and colored.

Saturday morning, we were up comfortably early (without the use of an alarm because we were so excited!) and made it to Hailey by 10:30. We were glad to get to Susie Paperie early so we could choose our seats, get our supplies settled, and (most importantly) shop. There was even time to grab divine rosemary chicken salad sandwiches at the Big Belly Deli right around the corner. BBD supplied ginger snap and peanut butter cookies for the class and they were awesome, too.

Susie Paperie was a delight! So much fun stuff packed into the store, but it felt completely open and airy. Owner Adrienne was wonderful about everyone's needs and was nothing but helpful and gracious all day. I'll probably be ordering from her soon... she offers Copics and Memento inks and stamps galore! SP is a great place to shop or take a class. She has a whole wall that's covered with chalkboard paint, and she's got her class schedule written there. Love that!

After lunch but before our two fantastic classes with Dave Brethauer from Memory Box, we got a chance to meet Dave and talk to him a little. He was impressed that we drove 6 hours round-trip to take his class. He even blogged about us!

Our first class had to do with color blending and shading with Prismacolor pencils. I was baffled initially as to how we were going to get our butterflies to look as etherial and well-blended as Dave's sample, but he made it so easy! Most amazing is that he can color upside-down! He was very conscious of the whole room and came to each table to demonstrate each technique. It was very helpful. Here's one of my blended butterflies on cream paper.

Next came the watercolor class, and this is where I learned the most. I have watercolor pencils, water-based paints, and even watercolor paper... but I wasn't using any of these to their full potential. Even the most basic thing was new to me: the paper has to be wet! (Who knew?) In addition to coloring in stamped images, we also colored swaths of paper and stamped on top. Here are two examples of the latter, using Twinkling H2O's:

If you are lucky enough to live within a reasonable distance of one of Dave's classes, I highly recommend it. He'll be in Colorado Springs next at a store I got to visit in Jan '07 called Simple Pleasures and then after that in the Northeast.

Another great weekend with a great friend! And, Lila, "Your hands are full!".

Happy Stamping!

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

It came. It went....

...but we're STILL going to party. My 1-year blogaversary (which coincided with my sister's birthday) was last week. I didn't forget, but never did get around to posting about it or the blog candy I've been collecting for it. Happy Birthday, Kris!

Here's the scoop on what's been going on around here:

- I am working on building a design team for Shimmerz paints. They are so much fun to play with! Last night, I made earrings from beads that were painted with Shimmerz. They're so incredibly shimmery and they dry on slick surfaces. {singsong}Love It!

- Speaking of earrings, I learned to make earrings last fall. They are now for sale at a new, artsy consignment store in downtown Nampa called Sparrow Clothing, which had their soft opening on May 10th and sold 30 pairs by June 1st... and they didn't even have their Grand Opening yet. All 30 replacement pairs are made, and now there's the matter of getting the holders printed and assembled before sending them out there.

- I've been helping out at Creative Cuts & More, with blog buttons and newsletter formatting. Terry has lots of terrific new dies and new products that she'll be adding the the Web site very soon. Bazzill Bling and Tacky-Tape shapes... here we come!

On July 4th weekend, I'll be hosting a Wish-RAK challenge at Splitcoast for patriotic cards to send to overseas troops to send home to their friends/family. I can't WAIT to see what people come up with! I'm planning on making my samples from the Kim Hughes "America the Beautiful" set.

Here's a birthday cupcake for Kris and my blog. I'll have goodies for both sometime soon. :)


Stamp: Clear Design Cupcakes CL158 (Hero Arts)
Paper: Classic Crest Solar White 80# Cover Smooth (Neenah)
Paint/Ink: Golden Wheat, Magenta, Royal Purple and Bubble Gum Shimmerz (Shimmering Products); Brick Beige E31 Marker (Copic); Jet Black Archival Ink (Ranger)

We'll be heading off to Dave's coloring class this weekend, and then first thing Monday morning my husband is scheduled for abdominal surgery... so it may be another week or so before I'm able to post. Until then...

Happy Stamping!

Thursday, June 05, 2008

Kim Hughes Release & Blitz

So far, the first few hours of the Kim Hughes Blitz over at Cornish Heritage farms has been a total blast! Two winners were randomly selected from those who posted on the forum, and it turned out that Lila and I were selected. Pretty cool! Fall Silhouettes is on its way to my door!

Then there was a really tricky challenge. We had to use orange, lime green, brown, and cream... along with buttons and a bow. I was baffled by the color combination until I ran across the 6x6 pad of LilyKate paper. Perfect! Here's a
picture of the owl gal (eyelashes added).
If you'd like to see a peek at the whole card, click here.

Happy Stamping! :)

Thursday, May 29, 2008

Trifecta of Tidbits

I'm having a terrific stamping day today, and I didn't even stamp yet. It's nearly 11pm here, though, so squeezing in a little stampin' time before the clock strikes twelve is unlikely. Here's what made the day so great...

(1) Right at the crack of 10am, I was on the phone to the nicest lady at Susie Paperie in Hailey, Idaho. On my short list of stamper-stars to meet is Dave Brethauer from Memory Box. His coloring techniques are amazing, as are his card constructions. Very simple, tight, and impactful. Love them. So I got an autographed copy of his book, Card Design, when in Spokane and have devoured it with fervor. Long story short, he's coming to Idaho and my BFF and I are in seats #1 and #2. Can. Not. Wait.

Then the next two happened just within the last 15 minutes or so while I was blurfing.

(2) Kim Hughes {I *singsong* love her stuff!} posted on her blog the names of the winners for her Memorial Day challenge. And whose name is on the top? Mine. She's sending me America the Beautiful, one of her rockin' stamp sets. Now I just need to take some anxiety medication and try to figure out how to make a thank-you card for her. Seriously, it's like making a painting for Michelangelo.

(3) CHF is having a Kim Hughes Blitz and it's kicking off on Wednesday night, June 5th. Oooh, and in conjunction with the blitz is the release of more of her stamps. Maybe more than I can handle.

Happy Stamping! Hope your day rocked!

Friday, May 23, 2008

Memorable Memorial Week

Didn't have any big plans for the week before Memorial Day, but I had a few fun stamping surprises to share with you.

On Tuesday night, I had a chance to meet with Amy. I did not know that this would turn into a stamping-related event. She was in Boise (for the first time) representing Sigma Sigma Sigma, the sorority to which I belong. We discussed some of our collegiate experiences and our hopes for an alumnae chapter to be formed here. Somewhere in the conversation, she was talking about crocheting on the plane and said something that I thought might have sounded like "I make cards". So as we were packing up to leave the Boise favorite Flying Pie (we enjoyed Gourmet Night), I asked her "So, did I hear you say that you make cards?" And that led to another hour or two of discussion... ink pads, Greek letter stamps, etc. I can't wait to hang out with Amy again when I
travel to Colorado and/or next time she's in Boise. We had a million things in common. So a quick shout out to Amy: Hi Amy!

Then I noticed an ad on the Stampington Web site advertising
the Summer 2008 Take Ten magazine that's due out on June 1. I clicked on it and read through the promotional page... and then I saw a card I recognized right there on the page! It was a card I submitted back in November '07 and it had been used in the Take Ten and Catch Up issues recently to advertise the coming Take Ten. So here's a quick glance at what I saw. The print is awfully small, but it looks like its on page 3. I'll keep you posted if any of my other submissions are inside. Oooh and I can't wait to see the work of Teri Anderson, a former Idaho Scrapper. She's the Guest Artist.

Tonight, I cleaned off some desktop space in my craft room. The room might never be completely cleaned and organized, but at least I can stamp in there again. It'll be nice to have a place to hide out and stamp!

In enabling news, Frugalities is offering everything 49% off until May 28th. No coupon code necessary. I noticed they have some Daisy Bucket stamps for $1.17!

Happy Stamping!

Monday, May 12, 2008

Tyson's a Girl

I'm enamored with my new toy, the Fiskars Threading Water punch. It is a scalloped border with dots. Very cute! I had to try it out, so here's a quick little card I made using it and the fabulous Kim Hughes stamps which were featured as the stamp-of-the-month at CHF in April.

There's been quite a hubbub over the Threading Water punch over at SCS. Stampers have had trouble finding it. I found mine at Archiver's. Don't have one in your area? No problem -- they ship!

Stamps: Kim Hughes April '08 Tyson the Turtle (Cornish Heritage Farms)
Ink: Tuxedo Black Memento (Tsukineko)
Paper: AnnaSophia Faded Floral, Worn Dots, and Multi Floral (Bo Bunny); Classic Crest Solar White (Neenah)
Accessories: Threading Water Punch (Fiskars); Sketch Markers YG93, R29, BG02, E000, and C0 (Copic); Nestabilities rectangle dies (Spellbinders)

Happy Stamping!

Thursday, May 08, 2008

No Card Today, Either

I stamped yesterday at Lila's and had planned to finish up a couple of cards today to share with you, but no dice. Why? I left my entire binder of Cornish Heritage Farms stamps at Lila's! (Do you think they're safe!?) I did get to play with her new Kim Hughes Tiled Scallops Backgrounder. It was heavenly. I also stamped a couple of paint chips with the Grunged Flower daisy. They turned out great!

Some quick sale news:
- Purple Onion Designs is having a spring cleaning overstock sale. Seven full pages of stamps. Hers are all very nice quality red rubber un-mounted. Stamps in the sale include alphabets, definitions, and sentiments. 50% off and more. Reasonable shipping.
- Hope Stamps Eternal is liquidating inventory. Big savings here, too.

Also, if you're local to the Boise area:
- The Re:Use Market in the Linen District will be open this weekend. Check their Web site for directions and hours. All sorts of goodies are free for the taking, from wallpaper books to tile samples and everything in between. Bring a bag.
- Need to Bead on Vista is having a trunk show & sale this Thursday, Friday, and Saturday. Inside the store, everything is 20% off -- and the trunk show vendors have great deals, too. Some of the strands of funky-shaped pearls were marked $9 and were on sale for only $2. Bargain!

Happy Stamping!

Monday, April 28, 2008

Fell in Love... in a Hotel Room

Yes, I admit it. I fell in love in a hotel room. It was autumn. And we were too tired to shop. So we stamped. And colored. With Copics. Sure, I mispronounced their names, but it was love.

Today, the new
Stampers' Sampler Take Ten Catch Up Issue arrived. It's in a new format now. I appreciate updates. I do. But I'm not a big fan of the fact that this particular layout choice causes most cards to be partially obscured. If you have a copy, check out page 28, for example. There's a "Wanted" card with some string. Is it a lasso? A bow? And then with "Mona and Leo" on page 18... what's the rest of the saying?

How are the two related? "Winter Wishes" appears on page 97, and it was my very first Copic creation. There are visible lines in the coloring, but I'm armed with training and practice now... so future projects will be better. This snowman card was posted back in October, but here he is for an encore.

Supply List:
Stamps: Sentiment from Winter Wonder (
Verve Visual); Snowman With Checkered Hat (Lockhart Stamp Company)
Paper: Peapod Notecard (
Memory Box); Textured Cardstock in 2 shades of green (Bazzill); Gingham patterned paper (Making Memories Kids Collection); White
VersaFine Ink in Onyx Black (Tsukineko); ColorBox Fluid Chalk Ink in Deep Green (ClearSnap)
Accessories: Sketch Markers and Glitter Pens (
Copic); Dimensional Foam Squares (3M)

Today has been the warmest day so far this Spring. It got up to 79 today, but they're saying we're at a risk of snow tomorrow and Wednesday. Brrr. Better not put the fleece away yet.

Happy Stamping!

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Velvet Flowers & Copic Topics

So much to talk about today! Let's start with a card that looks as springy as I feel. The temperature is nice, tulips are blooming, and little buds on the trees are making it feel like Spring is here.

This Chick-a-doo line from SEI is so cute... one of my very favorites ever. The pretty blues and greens are wonderful together, and they really pop when combined with the slightly darker green Bazzill. Y-U-M!

Supply List:
Paper: Lime Crush Cardstock (Bazzill Smoothies); French Blue, Cypress, and Mint velvet papers (SEI); Chick-a-doo patterned paper (SEI)

Accessories: A2 Card Die & Various Flower Dies (Creative Cuts & More); Glitter Brads & Gemstone Brads (Making Memories); Buttons (Autumn Leaves); Silk Ribbon (May Arts); Rub-On (Deja Views)

And onto Copic Topics. Copic doesn't rhyme with topic. It sounds more like taupe than top. Cope-ic. It'll take more practice for me, but I'm trying to consistently say it like Marianne and other other Copic folks pronounce it.

There are a few KEY things I took away from the training class in Eugene. They include:

* These markers are modular. You can purchase new tips, more ink... even empty markers. Customize them as you wish.

* Most versatile marker of all? The colorless blender marker. You can use it to make textures in a field of color (bricks, spatters, dots, cobblestones). It can help 'erase' mistakes. It can make colored-in jeans look faded.

* Grab a bottle of the colorless blender solution. You'll be refilling your marker. You can also put some in a spray bottle to play with.

* When coloring, don't hold back with the ink. It should soak through the paper. The back should look evenly soaked. Be sure to protect your table surface by coloring on top of other scrap paper or a glass mat or other barrier.

* Play and go crazy. Try things you wouldn't normally do. Seriously. Touch the red marker to the tip of the yellow marker. The red ink won't hurt the yellow marker. Mash hard on the brush tip of the marker. It won't fray. And even if the brush does break, no biggie! The marker isn't ruined... you just take out the old tip and slide in a new one.

* Need a different color? Buy an empty marker and mix up your own custom color. Get a very pale blue by mixing blue ink with blending solution.

* Re-inkers can be used just like alcohol inks. In fact, they ARE alcohol inks.

* These inks can color just about anything. Laurie, my tablemate in class was using the airbrush system to color blush on the cheeks of felt birds. The crew of a currently-running Broadway show in NYC uses them to color the microphones so they hide in the actor's hair.

* The type of alcohol used in the Copic markers is like ethanol. Know what else is made of a similar type of alcohol? Hand sanitizer gel! They're great as disinfectants... but even better as a craft medium! (OK, isn't everything better as a craft medium?) So keep a pump of hand gel on your crafting desk. It works like a charm for clean-up. I even found a purse-sized spray gel which will probably never make its way into my purse.

More key tips and thoughts to come.

Happy Stamping!

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Bit by Bit

I'm home from my trip and feeling a little under the weather. I'm also feeling a little overwhelmed by trying to sum up my trip in just one post... so there'll be a few.

First, if you're ever in the vicinity of a Copic Marker Certification Class or other Copic class offered by Marianne Walker, jump at the opportunity. The course was full of valuable information. And Marianne? Let me sum her up with one word: WOW. She's an amazing artist. She helped us all to relax and play and learn. Her enthusiasm for and knowledge of the product line make her the perfect (coining a new term here) Spokesteacher.

Next, I found a little goody at JoAnn's in Ontario, OR. That JoA
nn's is SO much bigger than the ones here in Boise. I have been to Ontario upwards of ten times for surgical procedures on Dad's hands... and we drove past the JoAnn's each time. We never went in because I haven't found anything to purchase at the local stores lately. Let's just say that I won't be just driving past the JoAnn's in Ontario anymore. In addition to the four stamp sets, four ink pads, bead packets and Bigz die I got... I found this little gem. It's a pack of 21 "Dangler Clips", found in the jewelry-making department and offered for $2.39 after the 40% discount. Look familiar? They're dead-ringers for the Clip-It-Up clips that retail for $7.

There is much more to tell. Until then... Happy Stamping!

Wednesday, April 09, 2008

News & Happenings

I'm heading down the road on another stamping adventure... this time to Eugene, Oregon for Copic Marker Certification Training. Through my regularly-scheduled blog-hopping, I learned that a few stamping stars (like Cambria and Joy) will be there, too. I can't wait!

I've highlighted a few places on the map that I'd like to stop. We're planning to cross paths with Courtney. Stampin' Cat Studio has been on my wish-list for months and I'm glad I'll get to stop there. We're heading there earlier in the trip than originally planned because our first route is too dangerous. That's right... one of the mountain passes is closed and another has 254" of snow on the side of the road (yes, upwards of TWENTY FEET). I'm also going to try to time it so I can visit Daisy Bucket on the way back. Dad is coming with me, and we're going to make an adventure out of it!

There are lots of fun new stamps and specials going on:
- CHF's Kim Hughes came out with two new sets: Nature's Silhouettes and Baked with Love
- I spy a new CUPCAKE!! It's part of Anna Wight's new birthday set at Whipper Snapper Designs, scheduled to be released on 4/15/08.
- Michael's has little plastic pebbles in their floral department that look just like Dew Drops. Yesterday, I grabbed their big bags on clearance for just $2.
- Save 35% on Crafty Secrets products at 7 Kids College Fund by using code CRAFTY35.
- justjohanna has a special savings set for April -- save 25% on a 5-stamp set which includes adorable owl
- Viva Las Vegastamps is having a big sale on their grab bags.
- Flourishes released Menswear and Siberian Iris.
- Gina K. Designs is preparing to launch a new line of stamps called Kindred Spirits.

Oh yes, and if you're local to Boise, don't miss the Re:Use Market. It's only about the size of a closet, but is it ever fun! The price is right, too -- everything's free for the taking. TIP: Bring a bag. They'll be open Friday the 11th and Saturday the 12th -- check their Web site for hours. My last visit there was so much fun! I got a couple of 3-ring binders, a wallpaper sample book, 2 fabric sample books, some wonderful tile samples, a few small slabs of Corian, and a handful of rub-on letters. It's truly a treasure-trove for any crafter! I can't wait to run some of the fabric and wallpaper through my Big Shot!

I'll be gone for a while... learning, playing, and exploring.

Happy Stamping!

Monday, March 31, 2008

New Die Goes Vintage

There's a brand new die at Creative Cuts & More -- the Cupcake Box. Although it is the perfect size for a cupcake, it's also a great container size for all sorts of trinkets and ephemera. In fact, my very first thought with the Cupcake Box was that it would make the PERFECT gift box for a rolled-up necktie for Father's Day. So I asked my husband for a tie I could use as a prop to photograph with the box and he said that he doesn't have one! Yep, "Captain Casual" is his new superhero name.

I went ahead and decorated the box with a more neutral collage of postage and mail themes -- so now instead of dad's tie box gift, it'll be on Grandma's writing desk holding her postage stamps and return address labels. Isn't it funny how projects evolve?
Supply List:
Stamps: Vintage Postcard Set, Vintage Numbers & Late 1800s Script Background (Purple Onion Designs); Keys (Innovative Stamp Creations); Old-Fashioned Pen Nibs (Stamp Francisco)
Paper: Almond Cream (Bazzill Smoothies)
Inks: Vintage Sepia VersaFine (Tsukineko); Chestnut Roan Chalk Ink (ClearSnap)
Accessories: Cupcake Box Die, Clear Acetate Sheet & Killer Red Tacky Tape (Creative Cuts & More); Authentic antique letter & postage stamps; Buttons (various)

Happy Stamping!

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Richly Blessed

Spring is springing up all over the place, isn't it? I'm so inspired by all the colors and sounds. I only wish that the bulbs (purple tulips, no less!) that my dad got for me last fall were in the ground and not still in the garage. Most of all, I'm inspired by my friends and family. Love and happiness to you all!

I haven't done a lot of stamping during the last week or two... but I did make a hundred pairs of earrings and design special retail holders/displays for them. A new store is opening up nearby and I'll have more details on that soon.

Here's a quick card to share. I think these birdies are adorable and are even cuter when paper pieced with cute patterned papers.

Supply List:
Stamps: Anniversary Birds & Thankful Blossoms (Verve Visual)
Paper: Dutch Girl (Cosmo Cricket); Pearlized White (Verve Visual)
Ink: VersaFine Onyx Black (Tsukineko)
Accessories: Rectangle Nestabilities dies (Spellbinders), Black grosgrain ribbon (May Arts), Cool Gray marker C-0 (Copic)

Happy Stamping!

Saturday, March 01, 2008

New Card & New Releases!

Get ready for three terrific new releases from Verve Visual! First up is Easter Elegance, complete with an ornate swirly cross and decorated Easter eggs. Then there is Anniversary Birds, with two adorable modern birdies with great sentiments. And last is Thankful Blossoms, featuring flowers, a butterfly, and six sentiments in wonderful fonts. Love them all! The best part? Saving nine bucks when purchasing them all together in the Spring Launch Pack.

My card today features the beautifully unique cross from the Easter Elegance set. I just love it! This card frames the stamped cross with a big, bold cut-out using a die-cut card from Creative Cuts & More. I wish the photo showed this a little bit better, but you may be able to see that the largest swirl in each quarter of the cross look like it's lighter in color. It's actually a very fine application of micro glitter atop the stamped image.

Supply List:
Stamps: Easter Elegance (Verve Visual)
Paper: Sparkleberry Delight & Grape Delight (Bazzill Basics)
Ink: Wisteria ColorBox Chalk Ink (ClearSnap)
Accessories: A7 Cross Window Card Die & Nameplate #07 Die (Creative Cuts & More); Bright Jewels (Doodlebug Design);
Twinkle Micro Fine Glitter (The Stamp Doctor)

Happy Stamping!

Monday, February 25, 2008

I Went Back

On the Verve Visual blog today, I went Back-to-Basics!

My very first "technique" was edging. It was taught to me by Gwennie, who was my very first stamping teacher. She worked at one of only two independent rubber stamping stores in the Treasure Valley at the time. (Sadly, both have since closed their doors.) Her cards seemed to have such depth and richness. I wanted to learn from her right away.

The trick to the dimension and depth, she said, was the brushing of the ink pad against the edges of the cardstock -- a technique known as edging. The technique is very flexible. Using different amounts of pressure when edging, you can control the amount of color that is imparted to the paper. You can also vary inkpad types to achieve different looks. My favorite ink pads for this technique are the very spongy ColorBox Chalk Cat's Eyes, and Gwennie used these too.

Supply List
Stamps: Fancy Florals Remixed, Thoughtful Florals and Fancy Florals (Verve Visual)
Paper: Wild Wasabi & Whisper White (SU!)
Ink: Blue Iris ColorBox Chalk (ClearSnap); Wild Wasabi, Purely Pomegranate, Bayou Blue (SU!)
Accessories: White Glaze Pen (Sakura); Stitched Ribbon (SU!); Brad (Karen Foster Designs); Flowers (Prima Marketing)

To see the other photos of this card in progress, click here.

The Verve Visual stamp sale only lasts until Friday. You definitely don't want to miss it.

Happy Stamping!

Thursday, February 21, 2008

Five in Ten

There was a little treat waiting for me in my mailbox today -- The Stampers' Sampler Take Ten issue for Spring 2008. I hadn't ordered it yet, so this must be my "artist comp" copy. Yeay!

Five of my cards are in this issue. Do you recognize them?

Many Thanks appears on page 4. Snow, which I created as part of the Mandarin Pixie DT finalist challenge, appears on page 28. Make Me Smile, my very first Verve card ever, appears on page 113. Then two cards are in special areas of the magazine. Beaming with Happiness is featured on page 138 in an advertisement for the Summer 2008 Take Ten issue. Then, most exciting for me, is Wishing You which appears on page 26. It's exciting because
it has been chosen as the DESIGN CHALLENGE TEMPLATE for this issue. *squeal* Since I haven't shown Wishing You yet here on my blog, here it is:

Supply List:
Stamps: Starlight Starbright (Verve Visual)
Paper: Cowboy Collection (Crate Paper), Star Kissed Star Mile (Daisy Bucket)
Ink: Chestnut Roan Chalk Ink (ClearSnap), VersaFine Vintage Sepia (Tsukineko)
Extra Jumbo Scalloped Oval Punch & Super Jumbo Oval Punch (Marvy Uchida); Grograin w/ Satin Center Ribbon (May Arts)

for sharing my special news! I have quite a bit of stamping time scheduled over the next couple of days, and I hope to have more projects to share with you soon!

Happy Stamping!

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

A Fun New Adventure

There was some productive stamping and painting time today. I stamped a flat die-cut white cardstock and a separate white sheet of CS with a gray StazOn ink, since I felt that black would have been too bold. Then for painting, several colors of Twinkling H2Os were tested on the white sheet. Garnet was just the right choice: bold enough to stand up to the gray but not over the top. Assembly was easy after the paint was dry... that killer red tacky tape is REALLY sticky. Just what was needed.

You'll be seeing a lot more die-cut projects around here because I've accepted the invitation to join the Design Team for Creative Cuts & More. So fasten your seatbelt and get ready for the specialty-cut cards, fun boxes, and all the other great products Terry offers there. And in addition to standard papers, she offers her die cuts in chipboard, acetate, polyshrink, foam, felt, and beautiful metallics. And if you want something else cut, like a specific patterned cardstock, send it to her and she'll cut it for you! The DT is comprised of many very talented members (including my best pal, Lila), and I can't wait to work with them and get to know them better.

Supply List:
Stamps: Serenity (Verve Visual)
Paper: White Cardstock (Creative Cuts & More)
Ink:Stone Gray StazOn (Tsukineko)
Accessories: Garnet Twinkling H2Os (LuminArte); Short Puff Box Die & Killer Red Tacky Tape (Creative Cuts & More); black ribbon (May Arts)

Happy Stamping!

Thursday, January 31, 2008

Sketch Challenge

Have you heard about the sketch challenge being hosted by Verve Visual? The details can be had here, at the Verve Visual Blog. Basically: (1) Create a card using the sketch (2) Photograph the card and upload it to your gallery or your blog and (3) Submit a link to the card via a comment on the Verve blog by February 15th.

The prize is extra-cool! The winner of the sketch challenge will get to be the Honored Guest -- meaning that she'll get a copy of the Design Team Kit (which includes hot new not-yet-released stamps)! It'll be awesome! Julee has also stated that there will be some random drawings throughout the contest... so there will be even more prizes. If you need some inspiration, you can check out the Verve Visual Gallery. Each DT member submitted her version of the sketch. Here's mine.

Supply List:
Stamps: Swirly Stars, Starlight Starbright Remixed (Verve Visual)
Paper: Wasabi Green, Whisper White, Basic Black, and Cool Caribbean CS (Stampin' Up!); All Dressed Up Paper Stack (DCWV)
Ink: Caribbean Sea Spectrum Ink Pad (Stampin' Up!); VersaMark (Tsukineko)
Accessories: Nestabilities square dies (Spellbinders); Leaves Dew Drops (The Robin's Nest); Word Window Punch (Stampin' Up!)

Happy Stamping!

Monday, January 28, 2008

Shooting Star from Saturday

Saturday was so much fun! It started with an impromptu rubber stamp sale that I read about on Craig's List just a half hour earlier. The sale was only 1/5 of a mile away and the ladies were so nice. I scored a bunch of fun stuff! Then it was off to the post office, lunch with a friend, a quick visit with Julee (to whom I referred as my "dealer" at the sale) and then a much-needed stamping date with Lila.

Here is one of the cards from that stamping session: A Shooting Star. The 'shooting' part was created from thin strips of blue Deja Views paper and the white linen cardstock. At first, I was trying to curl them like curling ribbon with my thumb nail, but that caused the strips to rip. Curling them around my paper piercer worked much better! The curls were arranged so there were two white and two blue curled each direction, for a total of 8.

Supply List:
Stamps: Seeing Stars (Verve Visual)
Paper: Sharon Ann Little Ones Collection (Deja Views), White Linen CS (Archiver's)
Ink: Ballet Blue (Stampin' Up!)
Accessories: Stars #2 die (Sizzix), sewing machine, dimensionals

Hope you enjoyed your weekend, too! Happy Stamping!

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

New Card & New Medium

How fabulous to come across a patterned paper with polka-dotted stars when you want to make a card with a stamp of the same type! This American Crafts paper was perfect for the bold, fun look I was going for. (Thanks, Lila!) I also tried the Dew Drops from The Robin's Nest for the first time. Love those, too.

Supply List:
Stamps: Polka Stars, Swirly Stars (Verve Visual)
Paper: Celebration Collection (American Crafts); Caribbean Breeze (Bazzill Smoothies)
Ink: VersaM
agic Chalk Aloe Vera (Tsukineko)
Accessories: Large Squeeze star punch (Fiskars); Leaves Dew Drops (The Robin's Nest); dimensionals

In addition to stamping, I've starting working with beads. It all happened by accident, really. I was visiting my sister in Colorado this past September, and I handed over my camera to show her some really cute pictures of her son. She hit the review button and came across some pictures of some lam
pwork glass beads that I had taken a few weeks before -- and she asked for some earrings. I don't know if she sensed my panic when I said "Sure." Off I went to learn how to bead.

To make a long story short, I sent her several pairs of earrings for Christmas and she said she loved them. (Anyone near Boulder want to let me know if she's really wearing them or just humoring me?) I've rather enjoy
ed making the earrings, and I went ahead and opened an Etsy store to share them with others. The store needs some work (and some more inventory), but it's a start.

Happy Stamping (& Beading)!

Wednesday, January 09, 2008

January Verve Release

They're HERE! There are a total of five fun sets in this release. Three are star-themed and coordinate perfectly with Starlight Starbright, while the other two are heart-themed.

I don't know if I have a favorite set yet... I've been enjoying them all! The card I'd like to share with you today features stamps from both of the new heart sets, Heart to Heart and Wild Thing.

The Hugs and kisses sentiment is one of seven sayings and phrases in the Heart to Heart set. And the little VersaMarked heart in the background? That's from Wild Thing, where there are four of the individual asymmetrical hearts in various sizes and patterns.

Supply List:

Stamps: Heart to Heart, Wild Thing (Verve Visual)

Cowgirl Collection (Crate Paper)

VersaMark & VersaFine Sepia (Tsukineko)

Hearts Tipsy Die (Sizzix); White Glaze Pen (Sakura); Brown glitter brads (Making Memories); dimensionals

So, keep your Web browsers tuned to Verve Visual for the big release tonight -- and check the gallery, too, for samples that'll enable you for sure! And the guest stampers? Their projects will knock your socks off!

Happy Stamping!

Wednesday, January 02, 2008

"Love"ly Sneak Peek

Happy New Year! Let's start of '08 with a fun sneak peek! It's a card I created from one of the five new stamp sets that are scheduled to be released by Verve Visual on January 10th.

Click here for the sneak peek. And check the Verve blog each day until the 10th... because there are going to be some yummy samples posted.

Do you have any resolutions related to stamping or crafting? I resolve to get my craft room into better shape. I have plenty of organizational tools, so it's time to get working on it. It's embarassing to have to purchase something that I know I already have... except I can't find it so I need another. *scream*

Happy Stamping!