Sunday, February 28, 2021

Christmas Kickstart: Slimline Cards

 The challenge at Christmas Kickstart is to create a slimline card. When I started adding to my slimline stash I was planning to keep it to general dies and stencils but I couldn't resist this Christmas stamp.  Then I never got around to using it at Christmas! So here it is!

02.28.21 Christmas Kickstart

The image panel is cut with Trinity Stamps Modern Embossed Frame Panels.  These types of dies are some of the most boring dies to buy but, for me, they are the most used.  They are just rectangles, but I love finished edges especially when I am doing nothing but putting it on background paper. 

02.28.21 Christmas Kickstart side

I added glitter to the star and it's on the top edge of the "ground" also which I added just as a balance to the star.  A few sparkly sequins as starlight - and this card is done.  I actually played around with it for quite awhile trying different colors of different embellishments but I love the stamp and thought it worked well on its own.

Thanks to Christmas Kickstart for giving me the inspiration to use this stamp!


Stamps: Woodware Peaceful Night

Dies: Trinity Stamps Modern Embossed Frame Panels, Simon Says Stamp Holy Star

Friday, February 26, 2021

The Paper Players: Feline Fine

Given the felines in my house, one of whom is currently sitting on the card for this challenge that I need to get a photo of, I had to play along with the current challenge at The Paper Players which is "Feline Fine"

2.25.21 The Paper Players

My boys helped rescue the mother of our two cats.  When my guys were in elementary school, on an extremely cold day, the mother was a kitten trying to survive under one of the temporary classroom buildings.  The school wouldn't let them crawl under to rescue them during the school day, but they said any families could come back after hours (in the dark, when it was even colder).  We were one of two families dumb brave enough to risk the bitter cold. After belly crawling on the ice, one of the kids in the other family rescued the kitten and they took her home.  So when that cat later had four kittens, we visited them weekly from the day they were born. When it came time to find them homes, the girls in the other family were struggling with splitting them up so they kept two and convinced us to keep two.  The idea was the cats were the boys' pets.  Right.  Boys grow up - and leave home - but cats seem to stay. And they are such a big help!

Thanks to The Paper Players for the inspiration to create a cat card for my stash to send to one of my boys.


Stamps: Poppystamps Whittle Love Sentiments

Dies: Poppystamps Whittle Cat, Whittle Clouds and Little Bit of Turf, Memory Box Postage Square Layers

Paper: Memory Box Madras Plaid Coral and Green, Dashing Stripes and Dots, Lush Green Collection and Earth Neutral Collection

Thursday, February 25, 2021

TGIF Challenge: Sale-A-Bration!

The current TGIF challenge is to use something from this year's Stampin' Up Sale-A-Bration.  Given I got three different things, I just had to play along.  I even got two different patterned papers and I'm not a huge user of patterned paper.  The Oh So Ombre pack fits my CAS personality - but I also got the Flower & Field dsp which should be out of my comfort zone with the bold patterns but I love it! Although notice I still didn't use a lot of it!

02.25.21 TGIF

When I do get SU dsps, I tend to use the backside of the paper which is typically a subtle pattern. In the Flower & Field papers, it was the florals that called my name, especially the pattern that I used on this card. I used the Pretty Perennials stamp set and the coordinating dies. It's one of my favorites and works well with the paper.  For a little sparkle, I pulled out an older sequins set - the Iridescent Sequin Assortment because it includes Pool Party which is an accent in the paper. 

I also almost have the Sale-A-Bration Heal Your Heart stamp set. It's on the way but it didn't arrive in time to use on the card for this challenge. Having said that, "Happy Mail" is the type of sentiment I'm using a lot of right now as I still have friends and family who are staying in their homes so I send cheerful cards.

Thanks to TGIF for the inspiration!


Stamps: Stampin' Up Pretty Perennials

Dies: Stampin' Up Perennial Petals

Paper: Stampin' Up Flower & Field dsp, Just Jade CS

Ink: Stampin' Up So Saffron (newly inked so darker than usual!), Flirty Flamingo

Other: Stampin' Up Iridescent Sequin Assortment

Wednesday, February 24, 2021

Freshly Made Sketches: Sympathy with Floral Doodles

It's time for a new sketch at Freshly Made Sketches! Today we have a sketch by Judy and here’s what I did with it!

  2.25.21 FMS 

I pulled the colors from the washi tape. I had already added texture to the background and like it before I realized the sketch showed the sentiment directly on the background. I simply added a black sentiment strip which made the sentiment pop so ended up working out well. Obviously I branched out from the square on the sketch. I had planned on putting a square behind the flowers, but as I added the leaves and the tulip, the square would have just been too big. 

The flower dies are gorgeous.  I love the layers.  I went with white on the top layer to keep the card very fresh and clean - but could easily add coordinating colors. There are other options in the die set so I definitely will be doing an even bigger bouquet in the future.

2.24.21 FMS Side

I hope to see you playing along with us this week at Freshly Made Sketches.


Stamps: Papertrey Ink Round & Round

Dies: Altenew Floral Doodles Die Set, Altenew Featured Sentiments die set

Cardstock: Stampin' Up Cherry Cobbler, Blushing Bride, Crumb Cake

Other: Stampin' Up Tasteful Textiles embossing folder, Carpe Diem washi tape, Pretty Pink Posh Seaglass

Tuesday, February 23, 2021

Fab Friday: Garden Floral Stencil

I have not used a lot of stencils.  Maybe a few as light backgrounds but not much more than that.  No reason for it, I just have so many other products, why deal with one more?!  But finally, not only did I use a stencil but I used a five layer stencil!  I might be a convert because I love the results.

2.23.21 Fab Friday

I didn't spend any time thinking about this one.  It was really supposed to be a practice image.  I pulled out some colors that I knew would blend.  Then when I got this big flower done and decided I liked it, I wasn't sure how to use it. I'm kind of a small-little-groupings cardmaker - these big things stump me.  Fab Friday to the rescue!

The fabulous design team for Fab Friday are Stampin' Up demonstrators although it's OK with them if our cards don't use Stampin' Up products.  I have more than my fair share of SU products and I felt a tad guilty not using them. So at the last minute, I added a background using the  Stampin' Up Tasteful Textiles embossing folder! I like it - it gave it a nice soft look. The pinkish color is also Stampin' Up - I adore Flirty Flamingo - which is amusing because #1 I don't like pinks and #2 when I read other blogs I notice that many others actively dislike it!

This was fun and so much easier than I would have expected. I think I'm going to go try some different color combos!


Stamps: Avery Elle Simple Sentiments

Stencil: Pinkfresh Garden Florals set 

Dies: Pinkfresh Garden Florals, Taylored Expressions Stitched Rectangles, Scalloped Rectangles

Cardstock: Stampin' Up Flirty Flamingo

Other: Stampin' Up Tasteful Textiles Embossing Folder, Pretty Pink Posh Marigold jewels

Monday, February 22, 2021

Poppystamps: A Whittle Animal Lover

 I'm on the Poppystamps blog today with this card for an animal lover!!

2.22.21 PS

I love that row of Whittles - they make me smile.  I did this for a co-worker who adores animals and loves blue, but can you imagine it in pink with the Whittle Unicorn and hearts.  Or what about with about a bold stripes and various zoo animals from the Whittles line?

Check out the Poppystamps blog for all the details.

Dies: Poppystamps Happy Birthday Poe Script, Whittle Birds, Whittle Rabbit, Whittle Cupcake, Whittle Paper Hedgehog, Whittle Mouse
Paper: Memory Box Garden Folly

Wednesday, February 17, 2021

The Card Concept: A Big Hi

It's time for a new challenge at The Card Concept.  The theme is Welcome Wee One with a fabulous nursery as the inspiration photo.  I don't need any baby cards, but here's what I came up with.

021721 Card Concept

The main thing I saw in this photo was the variety of patterns and colors.  That's not something I'm good at.  I'm very matchy-matchy.  (As a proof story - about 2 1/2 years ago, we bought a new house for the first time in 30 years.  I fell in love with a house. We got in a bidding war and many would say we overpaid for it.  We don't see it that way.  It was totally finished in ways that I adored but am truly terrible at it. Like the bathrooms have tile and flooring that aren't matchy-matchy - but are absolutely perfect together! Don't even get me started on the richly colored accent walls. My craft room has a fabulous rust wall - one of my favorites - but the living room is a calm and relaxing blue. So for us it was move-in ready and totally worth the price.)

That was a serious sidetrack!  In the inspiration photo I saw stripes in the throw, a pattern in the rug (although I didn't use animal print), and the colorful curtains.  I also saw a unique mix of navy (I think that's the striped throw but it might be black), peachy/pink and aquas.  There's also a hint of greenery on the dresser. I pulled out a giant "hi" and added patterns and colors around that.

BTW - continuing on my theme of the last week of organizing - one of the things I did was purchase this packet organizer from Amazon (another version is on Simon Says Stamp which is where I first noticed it). I was going to use it for scraps but I ended up pre-cutting a variety of standard-sized cards and fronts, and I also added all of the white backgrounds and frames that I had created and never used.  The background on this card is out of that stash.

021721 Card Concept side

I'm new on The Card Concept design team, but I have decided that I truly love inspiration photos.  They take me in new directions.  I really like my card today but it's not a card I would ever have come up with on my own.  And that's why they call them challenges! I hope to see you playing along.


Dies: The Stamp Market Hi, Altenew Dotted Swirls Debossing Cover Die, Memory Box Scribble Leafy Branch Outline

Paper: Sunny Studio Dots & Stripes Pastel, Stampin' Up Pool Party and Mint Macaron, Taylored Expressions blue corn (the flowers are washi tape - I don't know where it's from)

Freshly Made Sketches: Big Hugs & Lots of Love

It's time for a new sketch at Freshly Made Sketches! Today we have a sketch by Amy and here’s what I did with it!

021721 FMS

I mentioned last week that I did a major clean-out of my crafting/work-at-home space and that I have a large basket of things I wanted to try.  There's nothing obvious on today's card, but I did use Altenew's Large Ink Blending Tool.  I got one that I planned specifically to use with stencils and white ink so using a stencil as the stripe on the sketch was the perfect chance to try it out.  

I think this blending tool is worth it!  Maybe I'll even use more of my stash of stencils if I have easier tools!!  (I do have other blending tools to try over the next few weeks - but I purchased this one specifically for white ink.)

Also new to me is the "Big Hugs" from Hero Arts that comes with a variety of matching sentiment stamps. I can see this set getting a lot of use - especially until social-distancing is a thing of the past (knock on wood!)

021721 FMS Side

I hope to see you playing along with us this week at Freshly Made Sketches!


Stamps: Hero Arts Big Hugs Stamp & Cut (includes Big Hugs die)

Dies: Taylored Expressions Petite Scallop Rectangles, Stitched Rectangle Stacklets, Double-Ended Stackers

Other: Taylored Expressions Mini Slim Stencil - On the Dot, Fun Stampers Journey Bloom Time sequins

Monday, February 15, 2021

Poppystamps Leafy Vines Slim Plate Two Ways

 I am on the Poppystamps blog today and am thrilled to share some of the new Spring release. It is full of Easter dies and beautiful new sentiments - and even a couple of slimline dies!!  Today I'm using the Leafy Vines Slim Plate but I couldn't quite decide whether to use it horizontally or vertically so I did both!!

Here's vertical.  This looked like a fabulous setting for some brightly colored birds along with the brand new Happy Birthday Poe Script die which is cut out of Memory Box black glitter to keep it fancy!

021521 Bird Flat

I also like the die used horizontally. To me it looks like a tangle of growth, perfect for wildflowers and butterflies!  The flowers and butterflies are also new (part of the amazing Fern and Daisy Pop Up Easel set) as is the Splendid Happy Easter die.

021521 FLowers Flat

Check out the Poppystamps blog for all of the details!

021521 PS Vines

Dies: Poppystamps Leafy Vines Slim Plate, Chirping Birds, Happy Birthday Poe Script, Fern and Easy Pop Up Easel set, Splendid Happy Easter.

Glitter Paper: black is from Memory Box Frosted Glitter Pad and the orange/yellow is from the new Memory Box Graceful Garden Glitter Pad.

Friday, February 12, 2021

CAS on Friday: Birthday Love

I went insane this week and I ended up spending hours upon hours clean and organizing my craft space. It's my happy place and I love the big window and the tall ceiling and the built-ins.  However, it's also my work space right now.  I just saw a commercial for Tuff Sheds in which they are recommending getting a Tuff Shed for a home office so you can leave the space behind at the end of your work day.  That's the problem I'm having - and I'm not kidding that I'm going a little insane.  As much as I love this space, I never leave it.  Now it's my happy place and my stressed out space. I don't want to work in a Tuff Shed so I stared at my space for a long time and I decided that if I really organized and in the process made the difficult decision to get rid of things that haven't seen the light of day, I could quickly and easily switch out my spaces.  The work stuff has a place to hide when I'm crafting - and my crafting stuff doesn't cover everything when I'm working. 

One of the things that came out of my flurry of organizing was a basket full of products that I had purchased intending to experiment with or needing to pick the best option.  For instance, I have a shockingly high number of paints and sprays that bloggers promised made splattering easy so you'll be seeing a lot of splatters on my card.  But not today.  

Today I pulled some Altenew ink out of the basket.  I'm a full collection kind of person - and I already have full collections of inks/cardstock from six companies!  I's a sickness.  I recently saw a discussion on people's favorite inks and Altenew showed up a lot so I've been thinking about adding a seventh company!!  When I ordered from them a while back, I tucked in the Rainbow Prism 6-pack of mini-inks. I decided they were today's experiment.

Then I saw the the current challenge at CAS on Friday: Love. The lightbulb came on.  I haven't used the Mini Delight: Birthday Love set also from Altenew.  This mini set doesn't have balloon strings, but I also recently got some basic Altenew washi that could substitute.  And to really get carried away with the same company - the sentiment is cut from the Altenew Featured Sentiments die set that I got for the rounded edges.  

CCS Birthday Love

I liked the inks - maybe not enough to go full collection (only because I already have six full collections and they've recently been organized!)  However, I think with the collection I picked, I missed out on the full benefit of these inks and that is those sets that include dark to light of the same general color to be used for layering stamps. That is something I do not have in my collection so I'll try one of those before I render judgement.  I like the coverage I got with it but it took a few tries each time because these inks don't play well with the baby wipes I used to clean. (FYI - I use Costco baby wipes as recommended by Jennifer McGuire.  Her most recent "My Favorite Crafty Things" video said try micro-fiber cloths.  My problem is the cats that walk across the desk and into my lap multiple times a day. No matter how well groomed they are, they drop fur everywhere. So I prefer baby wipes so I can use a fresh, unfurred one each time!)

Thanks to CAS on Friday for the inspiration!!


Stamps: Altenew Mini Delight: Birthday Love with die

Dies: Altenew Featured Sentiments

Ink: Altenew Rainbow Prism set - Ruby Red, Orange Cream, Warm Sunshine, Parrot, Lagoon and Deep Iris

Other: Altenew Delicate Stripes Washi Tape, Pretty Pink Posh Glossy Black gems

Thursday, February 11, 2021

Fab Friday: Happy Easter

I wanted to play along with the colors at Fab Friday. Two of the three colors were colors I really haven't used.  I'm not a big pink person although Blushing Bride has a softer look than most pinks.  Nor have I used Bumblebee. As a matter of fact, I was even surprised that I had the ink in my collection. I hadn't planned to get it because it seemed very close to other Stampin' Up colors.  But I do have it - so it seemed meant to be that I used the color combo.

2.11.21 Fab Friday

I love that embossing folder.  It's so delicate and I love that the bulk of the pattern is to the side but some dots and leaves spread further across the card.  I was inspired by the current sketch at Freshly Made Sketches because the simple stripes let so much of that embossing show. I didn't use this card for my design team post yesterday because I moved the sentiment from where it was identified in the sketch but you can clearly see that I was inspired!

I didn't set out to create an Easter card but the sentiments from Arrange a Wreath were the right weight and look for this card and looking at them made me realize that this was just right for Easter.

2.11.21 Fab Friday close

Thanks to Fab Friday for the inspiration! 

Stamps: Stampin' Up Pretty Perennials, Arrange a Wreath (sentiment)
Dies: Stampin' Up Perennial Petals, Stitched Labels (for the little "x" detail on the Bumblebee stripe)
Paper: Stampin' Up 2020-2022 In Color 6x6 dsp, Bumblebee CS
Ink: Stampin' Up Just Jade, Blushing Bride, Bumblebee
Other: Stampin' Up Meadow Moments Embossing Folder, 2020-2022 In Color Enamel Dots

Wednesday, February 10, 2021

Freshly Made Sketches: Hugs

It's time for a new sketch at Freshly Made Sketches! Today we have a sketch by Narelle and here’s what I did with it!

2.10.21 FMS

My first reaction to this sketch was "hmmm..what do I do with just two little stripes?" but I ended up having so many ideas. I'm using this card today because it closely follows the sketch but I have another card that varies a bit that I'm finishing up for tomorrow!! 

I went through my stash looking for big flowers. I ended up with this set from Concord & 9th because of the fine lines - I knew the sentiment would stand out. I stamped part of it in the upper corner and another part in the lower corner.  The stripes are washi tape from Altenew that just jumped into my cart one day (even though I think this is my second ever use of washi tape with the first being just a month ago.)  It was such a unique color combo and I loved the golden panels (which don't show well in the photo). I matched the ink and the cardstock to the washi colors. The sentiment is new-to-me from Simon Says Stamp.  "Hugs" card are currently my most used cards.

Hugs to you!!  I hope to see you playing along with us at Freshly Made Sketches.

Stamps: Concord & 9th Fine Line Florals
Dies: Simon Says Stamp Hugs
Paper: Stampin' Up Calypso Coral and Early Espresso
Other: Altenew Allium Palette Washi Tape, Studio Katia Gold Foil Pearls 

Monday, February 8, 2021

CAS Colours & Sketches: Christmas Joy

I typically take January off from making Christmas cards but now it's February.  I dreaded it a bit after the made rush in December but I have to admit, with a little help from the colors at CAS Colours & Sketches, I thoroughly enjoyed this and am ready to start building my stash!

02.08.21 CCS

The big sentiment is Sending Christmas Joy from My Favorite Things. I've seen so many cardmakers build cardstock stripes behind big sentiments. I thought these colors would work if I accented with a few snowflakes and a poinsettia.  My original plan was a trio at the bottom - a blue snowflake, a red poinsettia and a green Christmas tree but even with my stash, I couldn't find three that worked together in size and style. So I ended up with my favorite poinsettia, backed with holly leaves and a few tiny snowflakes as accents.

Thank you to CAS Colours & Sketches!!


Dies: My Favorite Things Sending Christmas Joy, Flora & Fauna Poinsettia, Reverse Confetti Holly, Lawn Fawn Mini Snowflakes

Cardstock: Stampin' Up Pacific Point, Just Jade, Poppy Parade

Other: Trinity Stamps Rainbow Reflections Rhinestones

Poppystamps: Love and Floral Stems

 It's my day on the Poppystamps blog. It's the month of love so I had to go with a love theme but I am done with all of my Valentines. So I used non-traditional colors for a card I can send anytime to my lonely friends and family who are still social distancing.

02.08.21 PS

There are lots more pictures and details on the Poppystamps blog - be sure to check it out!


Dies: Poppystamps Floral Stem Collage, Love Outline and Little Hummingbirds
Paper: Memory Box Cottage Stripes and Dots (the polka dot)

Wednesday, February 3, 2021

The Card Concept: Love You

 It's time for a new challenge at The Card Concept. Check out this luscious image!!

02.03.21 CCY

I was inspired by the colors and I started planning on being very literal with a cupcake. As I was flipping through my stash, I saw this set of hearts with the open one saying "i adore you" that reminded me of the open heart on the cupcake.  When I had the hearts cut, it needed a background - I looked at the inspiration and saw the cooling rack and that inspired me to pull out this particular background cutting plate. It all came together for my Clean and Layered Valentine.

My hearts are retired products. Sorry!!  Another company came out with the cutest set of hearts this year (looking at you Pretty Pink Posh). I had it in my cart ready to hit the checkout button when reality struck.  Last week, I posted that I didn't buy many Valentine products. So before I hit the checkout button, I checked my stash and sure enough, I had a nice stash of hearts.  Yes, it's retired but stamps come and go so quickly these days that I just have to keep using my favorites.

02.03.21 CC Side

This is going to my 16-year old niece so it just had to have sparkle. I had these crystal hearts that pulled in the colors of the stamped images.

I hope to see you playing along with us this week at The Card Concept!


Stamps: Simon Says Stamp Lots of Hearts (retired)

Dies: Simon Says Stamp Large Hearts (retired) and Small Love You, Lil' Inker Designs Quilted Stitched Pattern (store closed), Taylored Expressions Petite Scallop Rectangle

Paper: Stampin' Up Poppy Parade

Ink: Stampin' Up Poppy Parade and Flirty Flamingo, Papertrey Ink Dark Chocolate

Other: Buttons Galore Crystal Hearts

Freshly Made Sketches: Monkey Hugs

It's time for a new sketch at Freshly Made Sketches! Today we have a sketch by Karren and here’s what I did with it!

02.03.21 FMS 

I had some new products that were just crying out to be used with this sketch - starting with the Poppystamps Whittle Circle Frames!!  Given it was from the whittle line of dies, I also pulled out the Whittle Hearts and the Whittle Monkey because they had the same look.  It needed some leaves to I used the Orchard Leaves.  My plan was to make this a Valentine, but the new Big Hugs Posh Script die by Memory Box uses such fun fonts I think it really added to the cheerful look of this card.

I hope to see you playing along with us this week!


Dies: Poppystamps Whittle Circle Frames, Whittle Hearts, Whittle Monkey, and Orchard Leaves, Memory Box Big Hugs Posh Script and Wrapped Stitch Rectangles

Paper: Stampin' Up Crumb Cake, Sahara Sand, Granny Apple Green and Flirty Flamingo, old Sahara Sand dsp

Monday, February 1, 2021

CAS(E) this Sketch: For the Last Time

 It's the final sketch at CAS(E) this Sketch.  I thank them for the inspiration from all 405 challenges!! For the final sketch, they are doing a throwback to a sketch by the creator of the challenge, Jackie Rockwell.  BTW - she's also the designer of my blog!! Here's what I did the last sketch.

02.01.21 CtS 

And here's the sketch.

I wanted to go bright and cheerful.  I also needed a Valentine's card for my 13-year old niece.  That can be hard age - my niece is definitely thinking she's grown up but she still has an impish child in her. I started with the idea of the two speech bubbles and a heart as the middle element but it just didn't pop.  So I browsed my stash for a critter of some type and settled on this owl mostly because it was sweet but also because of its bold lines.

Just for fun - here's what I did with the sketch the first time it came around almost seven years ago when I was on the CtS design team.

Thanks to CtS for all of the inspiration over the years! You've been a resource for hundreds of my cards. I will miss you.


Stamps: Impress Valentine Words, Taylored Expressions Hoot Hoot Hooray Stamp & Die Combo

Dies: WPlus9 Hey Hi Hello

Paper: Stampin' Up Pumpkin Pie and Melon Mambo, Taylored Expressions Candy Corn and Strawberry Milkshake, My Favorite Things Black & White Stripes 6x6 Paper Pack