Card Making – the ultimate cheap thrill?!?!

Seriously, who are they kidding?!?!  I just got my March 2007 issue of Redbook.  There is an article on page 36 that talks about stamping your own stationery – the ultimate cheap thrill!! 

Um….have they ever honestly stamped before?  On what planet is this a cheap hobby?!!?  I could not stop laughing at this ludicrous idea.  Anyone who starts doing this thinking that they will ‘save money making their own greeting cards’ is totally in DENIAL!  Anyway, not only do they talk about it being cheap – but they made the most simple designs – and simple is not always bad, but these….well, mamak agreed – they are not cute!

Anyway, you’ll have to check that out for a good chuckle!

And several of you have asked for a card recipe for the brown and cream floral card I did at stamp camp.  I thought I would include a photo here and tell you how I made it.  I completely case’d this from Amy Westerman’s blog.  I just loved the simplicity and it was a perfect one for a class card!

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I stamped Bud Basics (a set from the summer mini last year – hope it makes the next catalog, it’s a great set!) in vanilla craft ink on chocolate chip cardstock.  Then I put a strip of certainly celery down and stamped in chocolate chip.  On a square of vanilla, I stamped the flower outline and the leaf outline.  Then I used celery ink to stamp the leaf “insides”.  I left the flower as an outline.  I think Amy’s is way cuter, but I didn’t have that stamp!  For the ribbon, I just folded a tiny scrap in half and taped it to the back.  It is mounted on vanilla cardstock for the base. 

I am a procrastinator…

Are you?  I am terrible about it.  I will have a project or a due date on something and I will wait til the last minute.  I am up the night before stamp camp working on cards.  Why do I do this to myself?  My sister-in-law just says that I work better under pressure.  I don’t know.  But this is another one of those days!  Now, in my defense, I was sick a lot this month and didn’t even get to play with my GinaK stamps until last week.  But here are a few I made and hadn’t shared!

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This is a sweet baby girl card.  That Lilykate paper from Basic Grey is just perfect to do simple baby cards on.  It is so pretty all on it’s own, you don’t want to do too much to it!  I love the little baby pea pod stamp, it is so cute!  And can I tell you, how nice is it to not have to cut stamps – just get to ink them right out of the box?!?!  I love it!  Gina’s are nicely trimmed, great rubber and I think they stamp really well.  Anyway, I used the mega scalloped punch and the jumbo circle.  I paper pierced the scallops and ringed them with my white gel pen.  I punched the corners of the lilykate paper with the ticket corner punch from SU.  Then pierced the corners of the mellow moss layer as well.  Topped it off with some white polka dot organdy from Starlitstudio and that was it!  I think it is simple and sweet – perfect for a little sweet pea girl baby!

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When I asked for tutorial suggestions, someone asked about the sparkly panel technique.  Well, Beate already has an excellent tutorial on SCS about this – and who can top Beate?!?!  So I will just show a sample and then link you to her tutorial, ok?  When I saw this little Leprechaun hat I just knew I wanted to stamp them and them sparkle them up.  not sure why, but that’s what came to mind!  So I did a bit of two tone (check that – used glorious green and gable green!! Gotta love St Pat’s day!) on the hats with my markers.  Then I stamped the entire panel with versamark.  Sprinkled Irridesdcent Ice embossing powder all over it and then used my heat gun.  I think it is so sparkly and fun IRL, but it was hard to really catch any of that with the camera.  I think my favorite thing is the curly question mark at the end of Feelin Lucky? It’s just fun!

Okay, I’ve got two more cards to finish up for a deadline today so I gotta get to work – what was that about working better under pressure??  And I wanted to do the Sketch Challenge today…..and I had some bag tags to make…..and I wanted to work on Alex’s name for the wall……oh the list goes on and on for a papercrafter, doesn’t it??

Backpack Tags…

Ok, I got this idea from the fabulous Jen (genie1314).  She has been making them as luggage tags and diaper bag tags.  Well, after picking Jen’s brain and learning where she got her supplies, I made a few this weekend!  Now Mamak’s girls and my SIL Tiff’s daughter have little tags for their backpacks!  They are really easy to make and they look so cute!  I left the back blank so that they could put an address label or something on it for identification purposes.  I told them they just had to pass along my information if anyone else liked them. 

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Here are the badge holders that I got at Walmart.  They make a vertical one and a horizontal one.  Make sure you measure the opening before you make the inside stuff.  The vertical one is slightly smaller than the horizontal one.  I got them in packs of 12 for $1.67 in the office supply aisle at Walmart.

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Here is Brooklyn’s tag.  I am sure I’ll make her a new one soon – I never like my first try at anything!  Tiff says it is great (she wanted pink and black), but I am just picky that way!  I just did a Monogram because her name is a little long!

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These are for Mamak’s girls.  Katie likes purple and Libby likes pink.  I used my cuttlebug flowers die to punch the little accent flowers.  I also punched more holes along the top plastic to give me more room for ribbon.  Can a girly tag every have enough ribbon??

Now, for my new stamps to arrive because I think I have a way to do a more ‘manly’ version for the boys!

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Oh, and I didn’t want to tie mine on with ribbon (Jen said this is how she did it).  So I went to Michael’s and looked around.  I found two options.  One was the little silver ball chain with connector that you see on some key chains.  These were pretty inexpensive.  Then other was to get a pack of lobster claw clasps and put those and the tag on a key ring thingie.  I tried to take pics of LIbby and Katies’s so you could see that a bit.  Hope that helps!  And Jen was right – they are addictive!

CC103: Spring Fun!

I finally caved and got the Doodle This set from the SU Spring Mini.  I just love it.  I love to watercolor and this set is all about that.  So I had to mount it right and away and get two cards made up for the Color Challenge today!  A great spring time color combo suggested byHandstampedhappiness

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This was my first card, I just knew I wanted to watercolor on the Fabriano cards Edie sent me (watch your mailbox girlie!!).  I love these!  So simple to stamp on and watercolor.  And it looks fantastic!  No layering or anything!  Anyway, I watercolored this and then used my new Sakura Quickie Glue Pen.  I am in LOVE!  You just dot it on and sprinkle the glitter over it.  Such precision!  I got mine fromStarlitstudio, and she is fantastic to work with!  I touched it off with a little grosgrain ribbon I got on a tiny spool at Joann’s.

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This second card, well…..it was getting really late.  It’s not that I don’t like it, but I liked the first try a lot better!  Anyway, I did the same watercoloring, only this time I used white cardstock.  It was a lot harder on there, lol!  I used the Quickie Glue Penagain for my glitter.  Then I stamped one of the doodles on the cool caribbean layer and used the paper piercer to pierce the dots on the doodles.  I finished it off with an A Muse Artstamps sentiment.  That’s about it!

I hope you enjoy these fun spring colors!  It’s in the 70’s here this week, so we’re in shorts and the boys are loving it!  Don’t be too jealous – it’ll be 100 soon enough!

Baby Things

A few friends have had babies recently.  A group of us (hi Losties!!) got together and made 6×6 pages to make a nice album for them to just fill with pictures.  I am terrible at stuff like this!  But I tried!  I also made a square card for it to match.  For some reason I hate making Baby cards.  Of course, this is what my mom requested for her school and my stamp campers would like to make some next time too.  So I will share these today and some more later on.  Maybe if I make bunches, I won’t hate making them so much?!?!

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This is the girl 6×6 layout.  I used Basic Grey Lilykate papers on it.  There is also a RGB chart on SCS to coordinate your printer ink with SU colors.  So I used that to print out the sayings in Chocolate Chip.  A bit of narrow organdy ribbon and that’s it!  These are VERY simple pages.

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The boy layout is exactly the same, I just used different papers from Lilykate. 

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The cards are square – I think 4 1/4 x 4 1/4, but I can’t remember for sure.  I used the Basic Grey Lilykate papers to match the 6×6 pages.  The elephant/baby stamp and the sentiment are from A Muse Artstamps.  I love their images – especially their sentiments! 

Anyway, there’s my baby things for today! 

A New Sunday Topic: Stamping Space

I thought I would start a few thematic days on my blog.  This will be the first one, and if y’all like it, I will try a few more designated days.  That way, I make sure I share those things too.  Sunday will be the first trial run on this.  I am going to call it “Stamping Space Sunday”.  Each Sunday I will share a more in depth look at something in my stamping space.  This will also help me to update photos of my space as things change.  I know that organization is a HUGE thing with paper crafters of any type.  There are always too many products and not enough space.  I hope that some of my solutions can help a few of you out!

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This Sunday I am going to share my ribbon storage.  What paper crafter doesn’t have tons of ribbons???  I mean, can you really ever have too much ribbon?  I know I don’t think so!  Currently I store my ribbon in 3 different places.  All are in an arms reach from where I sit when I work.  The first is my main storage place and this is where I started with all my ribbon.  I used to only purchase SU ribbon.  I am very particular about matching and their ribbons are perfect matches to their papers.  But, sometimes I just need some that I can’t fine from SU.  So now, I have expanded beyond their spools.  I got this rack from MyCraftSolutions on ebay.  It seems to go off and on as a store on there.  I really love it, and it is perfect for spooled ribbons.  I just have it hung on the wall over my stamp table.  It has 4 dowel rods.  I put cord, string and wide organdy on the top.  The second has all narrow organdy – these are either from SU, Michaels, or Starlitstudio.  The third dowel stores all my SU grosgrain.  The bottom rod has a wide mix – SU gingham, American Crafts, and other patterened spooled ribbons.  I love this rack, it holds a lot of ribbon, and I can reach them easily.  Usually, the ribbons are hanging down quite a bit and sometimes I have to spin them back up on the roll, but the dowels do not unroll easily – so it really is a wonderful system.

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My second storage place is one of those 3 drawer plastic storage units you can get at Target or Walmart.  I have several of these in front of me on my stamp table, but one is just for ribbon.  I have all my American Crafts spools – the small ones that come in the 5 packs and don’t have holes in the middle.  The bottom drawer is all the scraps of ribbon I have from when I’ve cut a length off a spool and didn’t use it all.  Kind of a mess drawer, but at least it is contained!

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The last storage place is new.  I got these 3×3 drawers from Cropper Hopper and they are used to store my ribbon from TexasJodyLynn’s shares.  I love that she has done these, and I’ve got a pretty good variety of ribbon too!  If you haven’t had a chance to do one of her shares – you really should!  She is FABULOUS to work with, and her prices are fantastic.   OH! And she has a polka-dot ribbon share RIGHT NOW!  She does Prima shares too!

Anyway, that about sums it up for my ribbon storage system!  So how do y’all store your ribbons??

And, what do you think of Stampin Space Sundays?

A Thank You and other stuff…

I just wanted to say Thank You to all of you who read my message about my sister.  I really appreciate all the supportive comments.  Many of your comments made me cry all over again!  And I don’t cry, lol!  Anyway, your sweet notes and prayers really mean a lot to me.  Thank you for letting me share that part of my life.

Nothing new for today, I had to take our van in to the shop so I haven’t had a chance to sit down and stamp yet.  Our passenger side sliding door is stuck shut!  Now, we bought this van in 11/02 and this is the first time we’ve really had to fix anything.  But, yuck!  Anyway, it won’t be fixed until tomorrow.  We have to leave it there because it doesn’t have a side door on it now!  Can’t really drive it around that way!  Thank goodness mamak’s family helped out by lending us their van/carseats to drop it off and get Andy from school today!  We’re gonna thank them by providing their dinner tonight.  It’s always fun to have the 5 kids eat together.  They are hilarious because Libby and Andy are so bossy – and they are each bossing with their ‘rules’.  Oldests are SO similar!

Anyway, that’s all for this afternoon.  Maybe I’ll get something else new made and I can share it later.  Also, mark your calendars for March 23&24th!  It’s the next VSN (Virtual Stamp Night) – the online stampathon that Mamak and I created two years ago! It has grown more and more every month and it is tons of fun!  I am gonna play  hostess for a round this time and I think I have talked Mamak into coming over and playing the challenges with me!  Check out the forum and watch for updates here!

February Stamp Camp Cards

Here are the cards we will be making at my class tonight.  We do 5 cards for $10.  Most of the ladies that come do not own any stamps themselves, they just like to come to the classes.  I try to keep them fairly easy, and if we use background stamps – I prestamp them.  Most of these cards you have seen already, but the two in the front are new.  The brown and cream floral card was CASE’d from a great design byAmy Westerman.  I really liked hers and tried to do my own version with the stamps and papers I had.  The pink and gray elephant card is also new.  I don’t particularly like that card – I think it was very late at night when I put that one together.  Sometimes I get a bit stumped for camps.  It is hard to do watercoloring with that many people, so I try to steer clear of that.  And more elaborate cards are more my thing, but again – too hard with that many people.  So it is always a stretch for me to come up with simpler things for camps. 

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Also, I wanted to share a new website with you all.  This is Julie Brooks (JJBrooks on SCS).  She is my newest downline!  I actually have TWO downline now!  Anyway, she just started her stamping blog, so check her out!  ‘Sup Julie!!

And other thoughts…

Most of you know that Mamakimberly is my sister.  This is her family blog.  She is my younger sister.  She is also the person that introduced me to stamping 3 years ago.  She told me we were going to try this despite my protestations that I could “buy that at Hallmark, why would I want to make it??”  (I know….how awful was I?!?)

A large part of my wanting to move to Texas was to be near her.  I have another sister, a brother and my dad all here in Texas.  But I am closest to my sister Kimberly.  When I moved here we got together every day almost and stamped.  We created Virtual Stamp Night on splitcoaststampers.  It was her brains behind the First Arlington Stamp Day.  I think she and her girls lived here that first summer. 

Even after she quit stamping to pursue digital scrapbooking, we still talk all the time.  She doesn’t come over every day, but our kids go to the same preschool so I see her all the time.  And I think we talk several times a day on the phone and via Hello (the bestest IM program EVER). 

She made me this blog.  It was her idea that I start one in the first place.  She makes all my watermarks, my headers, etc.  You can view her products here, for a short time anyway.  And this is where we get to the point of my post.  She is moving.  To China.

I have known this for a long time.  But I have been in complete denial.  I just thought of it in the future.  It was a long way away and I didn’t really let myself think about it.  I am not sure what made it sink in this week, but it has.  And it’s sunk in hard.  I don’t know if it is the talk of getting their house ready to sell, just the fact that I am emotional this week anyway, the closing of her digital sales.  I don’t know.

When I think about not seeing Katie and Libby – who FREAK out with excitement every time they see me – every week….it breaks my heart.  I know their move is a wonderful thing.  I know it is what they need to do, and I am very happy that they are getting this opportunity.  I fully believe in what they are doing and I support them all the way.  I think it is where they will be happiest.

But I don’t want her to go.  I can’t even think about it without crying.  She’s my best friend.  I love you, Kimberly!  I know we don’t ‘say that’ in our family, (you know what I am referring to, lol) but it’s true. 

Sorry to lay that on y’all.  It’s just really been weighing on my mind this week.  They don’t leave til this summer, but I know these last few months are going to fly by so fast.  And then they’ll be gone.

I love Daffodils….

and I was so excited to get this stamp!  I also love to watercolor.  I think it is therapuetic.  My preferred way to watercolor is with the thinner aquapainter and a drop of reinker on the lid of an SU ink pad.  Mainly because this is really handy, easy and not messy. 

Have you ever watercolored something and then put the final touches on and thought “oh cr*p, now it sucks!”  I mean, it’s not that the whole thing is ruined (although sometimes it is!) but it just is not what you had in mind.  And the thing that really stinks with watercoloring is that you have already invested all this time into it.  This is what happened to me today. 

I was coloring the daffodils and I love how that turned out.  (I colored the middle of the flower with barely banana and the outer petals with so saffron.)  Then I went to color the pitcher……and I hated it!  I used ruby red and it just did not achieve the look I was going for.  So I decided this could be a post for my blog!  I cut another piece of cardstock (this time the SU watercolor paper) and re-did the whole thing.  But I completed both cards so I could show you.  Now, it isn’t a bad card.  It just is not what I had in mind.  (this is also the Sketch Challenge for today!)

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This first one is where I messed up.  I just didn’t like the pitcher that bold.   I was thinking it would pop, like a brightly colored ceramic pitcher or something.  But I just wasn’t feeling it once it was done.

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This second one I colored the pitcher with going gray.  It’s a much softer look over all and a lot more me.  I used SU’s colored mini brads and the cuttlebug textile folder (man, I cannot get enough of that folder!) to complete the card.  I didn’t put sentiments on the cards yet – sometimes I will leave them until I am ready to use the card.  Then I can still stamp whatever I want or need at the moment.  And sometimes I leave them blank and just use the inside to write whatever I want. 

So what color would you have done the pitcher?