Thursday, December 14, 2023

Sketch Saturday: Warmest Wishes

I have just a couple of Christmas cards left to do but they are the ones that are personal. In this case, my son's girlfriend whom I haven't met, but many months ago when my son suggested this one was serious enough for me to send a birthday card, also told me that strawberries and bunnies would be a great theme.  So I decided to use the bunny theme for Christmas too!

Warmest Wishes

I wasn't quite sure how to make the card special, then happily Sketch Saturday came out with a fun sketch that I think really made the card unique and special.

The image is from Paper Rose. It must be older because I got the stamp at one online store (that didn't have the die) and the die at a different online store (that didn't have the stamp).  Isn't it amazing how far I'll go to not have to fussy cut something!!?  Then at one of those stores, I saw the paper and thought the soft colors and patterns would be just right.  And the paper happened to have a coordinating flower die! Finally, I had seen the Ink Blot Shop Holiday Times Sentiments and knew the look of them would be just right for this card so into my cart that went.  For those of you who are adding up all of these purchases - just stop - I don't want to know - this ended up being a very expensive card!!

A big thank you to Sketch Saturday for the inspiration that made this card special.


Stamps: Paper Rose Bunny & Guinea Snowman and die, Ink Blot Shop Holiday Times Sentiments

Dies: Echo Park Cozy Bunch (from Winterland collection), Memory Box Wrapped Stitch Rectangles

Paper: Echo Park Winterland 6x6, Stampin' Up Blushing Bride, Soft Succulent and Smoky Slate

Other: Pretty Pink Posh Snowflake Mix

Wednesday, December 13, 2023

Freshly Made Sketches: Ornamental Trees

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!

Ornamental Trees

As hard as I tried to limit the amount of new Christmas stash this year (given the surprisingly large box of not-yet-used stash from previous years), these trees by Gina K just had to be added!  They are so fun and unique, they add all the detail for you. Literally three trees (and a hint of patterned paper to fit the sketch) and I have a wonderfully detailed card that appears to have taken a lot more work than it did!

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


Stamps: Gina K Designs Wishing You

Dies: Gina K Designs Ornamental Trees

Paper: Reverse Confetti Very Merry 6x6, Taylored Expressions Blue Raspberry, Cilantro and Lime Zest

Ink: Taylored Expressions Cilantro

Other: Trinity Stamps Disco Ball Embellishment Mix, Taylored Expressions Dotted Lattic Embossing folder

Tuesday, December 12, 2023

TGIF: Merry Mistletoe

 I had the Lawn Fawn Merry Mistletoe set out on my desk and then saw that the sketch at TGIF Challenges would fit it perfectly!

Merry Mistletoe

I got this Lawn Fawn mistletoe set based on a card on the Doodlebugs blog, My intent was to copy it but I don't think I could have gone in a more different direction when I sat down to make the card. I found some old unused paper in my stash that for some reason today just called my name. So I sat down to match colors, etc. based on the paper.

The die set is very basic and very cute. I layered the two greenery dies and added some bright red berries on top. I accented it all with a sparkly blue bow.

Thanks to TGIF Challenges for giving me an idea for this die before it got lost in my not-yet-used Christmas stash just waiting for next year to roll around!


Stamps: The Greetery Sentiment Suite: Christmas

Dies: Lawn Fawn Merry Mistletoe

Paper: Kaisercraft Mistletoe (from deep in the stash!), Papertrey Ink Simply Chartreuse and Limeade Ice, Stampin' Up Pecan Pie and Poppy Parade, Stampin' Up Soft Shimmer (lagoon)

Ink: Stampin' Up Pecan Pie

Monday, December 11, 2023

Hand Stamped Sentiments: Birds of the Season

I didn't get many new Christmas stamps and dies this year.  At least until Black Friday/Cyber Monday - those sales killed my budget.  I already couldn't fit my unused Christmas stash back into its current box, but then even more showed up.  One of those was Altenew's Birds of the Season and it was going to get tucked away into that stash until I noticed the sketch at Hand Stamped Sentiments. It was meant to be!!

Birds of the Season

This was on odd purchase for me because I tend towards dies and not stamps. Making this card reminded me why.  SO many stamps that had to be lined up - and of course, any mistakes always happened toward the end requiring starting over from the beginning. Dies are more forgiving - especially using liquid glue so that I can nudge the various dies around on the card until they are exactly in the right spot.  Stamps aren't forgiving at all even carefully using stamp-a-ma-jigs, etc.  But you know what? I still think it's a gorgeous set and it will come out to play again.  It has three birds - there's a dove, a cardinal and a partridge (and the partridge has a pear to hang) so lots of possibilities.

I picked the sentiment because it fit the sketch but there are multiple fun sentiments.  I drew the line hanging it just to fill the space above the circle. 

Thanks to Hand Stamped Sentiments to keep this set out of the not-yet-used stash!


Stamps: Altenew Birds of the Season (and dies)

Paper: Stampin' Up Real Red

Ink: Stampin' Up Parakeet Party, Granny Apple Green, Sweet Sorbet and Real Red, Altenew Obsidian Black Pigment In

Wednesday, December 6, 2023

Freshly Made Sketches: Holiday Centerpiece

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!

Holiday Centerpiece

I ventured a little further from the sketch that I normally do. I almost didn't play along this week.  I spent a week with the flu and still feel totally run down - so not a lot of mojo.  I played around with the sketch exactly as is and instead of enjoying it, I got frustrated. So I decided to go with dies that I really wanted to use - and hope you can see still see the sketch in it!

The dies, except for the sentiment, come from Photoplay's Holiday Centerpiece.  It's a gorgeous set! The picture does not do this card justice. (To top off the lack of mojo, it was a gloomy, snowy day for pictures so it looks rather dull and flat.  Wow - could I whine any more??!)  Not only did I use gold foil for various elements, the paper has gold speckles in it.  So here's a quick snap just to show a little bit of the shine. 

Holiday Centerpiece

I ended up having fun with this card and I have the perfect receipient in mind.  So I may be whiny - but my craft room brought me out of my post-flu slump - so I promise to stop complaining.

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


Dies: Photoplay Holiday Centerpiece, Spellbinders Make It Merry Sentiments 

Paper: Lawn Fawn Spiffier Speckles, Stampin' Up Real Red, Garden Green and Pecan Pie, Taylored Expressions Shimmer White and Buttercream Frosting, Papertrey Ink Cocoa Bean, Concord & 9th Gold Foil

Other: Pinkfresh Gold Glitter Drops

Wednesday, November 29, 2023

Freshly Made Sketches: Lights for a Purple-Lover

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

A Purple Christmas

I knew right away what I was going to do with this sketch. I love it when that happens.  I had sorted out all of my Christmas cards and realized I only had five people for whom I didn't have just the right card. My purple-loving workmate was one of them so a string of purple Christmas lights was exactly what I needed to do.  Isn't that just the best part of this hobby?!

I had recently spent an afternoon playing in my Stampin' Up demo's craft room and did a number of cards with this set. In fact, I enjoyed it so much, I ended up ordering it for myself! Probably a silly thing to do because I've already made quite a few with it and there will always the next new thing. So I figured I'd get this one card made with it just in case it doesn't come out to play again.

FYI: The star is not the one that comes with the Merry & Bright dies. There's only one star die and I was too lazy to run it through the Big Shot six times. So I just used a punch to quickly get the six stars.

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


Stamps: Stampin' Up Merry & Bright (and dies)

Ink: Stampin' Up Gorgeous Grape and Highland Heather, Taylored Expressions Lavender Glaze, Jelly Donut and Eggplant

Paper: Memory Box Polished Foil Pad and Majestic Hues Glitter Pad

Other: Star Punch

Wednesday, November 22, 2023

Freshly Made Sketches: Merry Joyful Season

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

Merry Joyful Tree

This was kind of a selfish sketch because I knew that I had some large Christmas dies that I had not yet used so I left lots of open space. Then while I don't use a lot of patterned paper, I love a splash of it so I included the banner/stripe across the bottom. That was the idea anyway.  I couldn't find patterned paper that I wanted to use - none of my paper seemed bright and bold enough to anchor that tree. So I created my own using strips of cardstock in the colors that I wanted. 

The tree is by Simon Says Stamp and it's one of those wonderful dies that does all the work! Not that there isn't a lot that you could do with it, but I think it works just backed by red.  The only fiddly part of it is adhering the centers of the As, Os and Rs. So if I'd actually found patterned paper that I wanted to use, this would have been an extremely quick and easy card.

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


Dies: Simon Says Stamp Holiday Stack

Cardstock: Taylored Expressions Cilantro, Lime Zest and Cupcake, Stampin' up Poppy Parade and Flirty Flamingo

Other: Stampin' Up Polka Dot embossing folder

Wednesday, November 15, 2023

Freshly Made Sketches: Peeking Snowman

It's time for a new sketch at Freshly Made Sketches! Today we have a sketch by Linda.  On Monday, I posted what I think might have been the cutest die of last year.  Today, I have what is defnitely the cutest die of this year!!

Peeking Snowman

I had seen the Hero Arts Peeking Snowman die set on various online stores but it hadn't made it into my cart yet.  Then one day I saw it used by a couple of popular cardmakers so I went right to my favorite store and popped it into my cart.  I was happily adding other things to my cart (to justify the postage, don't you know!?!)  Mind you, I have a wishlist, so things were going into my cart quickly and while I was doing that - up popped the dreaded "out of stock" warning on the snowman.  I guess I wasn't the only one who saw those cards.  After a month of waiting, this guy finally was in stock and now it's in my collection!

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


Stamps: The Greetery Sentiment Suite: Christmas

Dies: Hero Arts Peeking Snowman

Paper: Bella Blvd Holly Jolly Christmas

Other: Simon Says Stamps Wooden Planks EF

Monday, November 13, 2023

Holiday Polar Bear

This guy is about as cute as it gets!  He's a Memory Box die from last year and I just could not let another year go by without using him!

Happy Polar Bear

The polar bear is the Layered Polar Bear, but his scarf is from Tall Bundled Snowman who is also very cute!  I adore his expression.  He's very easy to put together with just a few big pieces, then his feet.  I did the black on his face by cutting a small black circle and putting it behind the white so I didn't even fiddle with those small pieces.

The paper is Knit Picky from Lawn Fawn.  I LOVE the knit background and his scarf is from the other pattern in the pad.  They each come in multiple colors - so perfect for these wintery scenes. 

The sentiment is from Poppystamps. It's not exactly what I wanted to say but it pops nicely. Wjat the picture doesn't show well is that it is embossed in silver so works well with the winter scene.

So this is my unofficial pick for cutest die from last year - come back for my Wednesday post which will use my favorite cute die from this year!


Stamps: Poppystamps Christmas Quotes

Dies: Memory Box Layered Polar Bear, Tall Bundled Snowman (just the scarf), Trinity Embossed Edge Circle, Taylored Expressions Stitched Rectangles Stacklets, Lawn Fawn Mini Snowflakes

Paper: Lawn Fawn Knit Picky 6x6 dsp, Taylored Expressions Salt Water Taffy. Michaels Recollections Inkjet Printable Glitter Paper

Other: Wow Polished Silver Super Fine Embossing Powder, Buttons Galore Aquamarine gems

Wednesday, November 8, 2023

Freshly Made Sketches: Saw That

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

Santa Saw That

Santa got out his Christmas stationary and wrote one of my sons a note!  I've used this stamp set a number of times for them, and when I saw the sketch for this week, I knew the set would come out again.  Both of my sons are slowly moving into adulthood and they seem to be doing it in a very adult way (at their age, I was not nearly as calm and settled - but it was the 80s!)  So the sentiment does not entirely fit them, but I'm not quite ready to give it up.

I found a scrap of plaid paper and found some bright green to go with it. The notebook paper die seemed a little too big for the sentiment so I decided to add some trees and snowflakes and am calling it Christmas stationary.  The background and the notebook paper is a naturals type white paper with the flecks. I stamped Santa on plain white so his beard would pop and then fussy cut him.

Now I just have to decide which son deserves this!

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


Stamps: Essentials by Ellen Tis the Season

Dies: Papertrey Ink Spiral Notebook, Stampin' Up Sizzlits Merry Details for the trees (REALLY old!), Lawn Fawn Mini Snowflakes

Paper: Plaid from scrap bin, Stampin' Up Granny Apple Green

Other: Stampin' Up Polka Dots Embossing Folder

Wednesday, November 1, 2023

Freshly Made Sketches: Christmas Ribbons

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

Even though the sketch has circles, my mind immediately saw bows and ribbons. I had that all cut out before I had any idea what I was going to do for a sentiment. I thought about a gift tag or tags but they just hid too much of the ribbon then I realized that this sentiment set by Hello Bluebird was the right size and had multiple options that could work together.

A shout out to Brian King and his blog Stamp with Brian.  If you are into Stampin' Up (or even if you are not), you definitely need to follow him.  Not only wonderful cards - but he also gives color combos and that's my shout out today. I know the color combination on my card isn't all that unique - but it is for me.  It would never have occurred to me to pair Calypso Coral with classic Christmas colors. Not to mention, Mossy Meadow doesn't come out often for me (although as I'm typing this, I really don't why - it's gorgeous).  This is a trio of colors from this post on his blog and I thank him for the inspiration!

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


Stamps: Hello Bluebird Typed Christmas

Dies: Papertrey Ink Bows Galore

Cardstock: Stampin' Up Calypso Coral, Poppy Parade and Mossy Meadow

Other: Spellbinders Scattered Christmas Embossing Folder of the Month (Oct 2022), Stampin' Up Embellishments Toile Tidings Glitter Enamel Dots (real red), Adhesive-Backed Speckled Dots (mossy meadow), Fine Sparkle Adhesive-Backed Gems (calypso coral)

Wednesday, October 25, 2023

Freshly Made Sketches: Serene Bird

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!
Serene Bird

I love the look of the Serene Bird from Memory Box; it's absolutely perfect for a sentiment that includes "peace". I used the branch that comes with it as one of my banners. 

The rest of the card was a stretch for me but I love how it turned out.  First, I am not a huge fan of classic red and green. I know that's blasphemy for a cardmaker who does Christmas.  I struggle to use it on the clean white-background cards that I lean towards which is probably more of a statement on my cardmaking skills than on the colors!!  I love the colors toned down a bit - in Stampin' Up colors that would be Sweet Sorbet or Poppy Parade along with Parakeet Party or Granny Apple Green. OR I love classic red and green on kraft.  But I do love this paper pack from Stampin' Up and this piece had the blues and wheat and even some pops of white so I went with it.

Second, I would have said with certainty that I did not like the new color, Wild Wheat, but I do like it here.  I planned on a blue background for the bird and I tried them all but they didn't stand out enough against the pattern. So I hesitantly pulled out my Wild Wheat paper and I ended up loving the richness of it.  I can't say I'm a convert but I see that it has its place!

Do you love the pink color cast of the photo?  You should have seen it before I did some color correcting! It's due to the massive and truly gorgeous red maple outside my craft room window.  I wouldn't trade it for the world but there's a number of weeks where everything in my house has a pink/red color cast!  (FYI - I just use a freebie photo editor and it doesn't have the power to only color correct the background. If I take out the rest of the pink, the card itself changes to some truly odd colors!)

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


Dies: Memory Box Serene Bird and Branch

Paper: Stampin' Up Garden Walk 6x6 dsp, cardstock in Wild Wheat, Garden Green and Poppy Parade

Monday, October 23, 2023

CAS Colours & Sketches: Blessed

I have not done a slimline in ages and I actually enjoy doing them so when I saw the challenge at CAS Colours & Sketches, I knew I had to play along. 

Blessed Beyond Measure

The "good" reason for this card is that it will go out to the son who moved to Michigan and his girlfriend.  It's somewhat cute for her, but the rich fall colors keep it from being to feminine.  I also want to remind him that he's blessed - he has a good job, a nice apartment and this girlfriend seems sane!!  The very selfish reason for this card is that I have my Thanksgiving cards ready to go so my unused fall products are going back into a basket under my rolling cart and this tall slimline stamp set just doesn't fit!!  Selfish or not, I love that my two needs came together!! 

Doing this card, or actually photographing this card, reminded me why I hadn't done a slimline in a while. It's very hard to get a tall card in a square photo.  I compounded my problem by using gold embossing powder. In the photos I took with my normal set-up, the sentiment just looked like a dull brown - so I ended up directing a light at it to get a bit of shine. The struggle continued with the pinkish cast to the right (although you should have seen the picture before I used photo editing software and got rid of the pink cast that was over most of it).  But that's due to the glorious red maple - which is currently a blazing red color - that sits right outside my craft room window and I can only complain about the pink/red color so much because the tree is utterly gorgeous. Of course instead of whining, I could actually learn about photography - but I think I'd rather be making another card!!!

Thanks to the inspiration from CAS Colours & Sketches because this slimline ended up being exactly what I needed.


Stamps: Trinity Stamps Slimline Woodsy background (and dies), The Greetery Blessed Blooms (the sentiment) and dies

Dies: Trinity Stamps Modern Embossed Rectangle Stack and Slimline Modern Embossed Frames

Cardstock: Stampin' Up Pecan Pie, Mango Melody

Thursday, October 19, 2023

52 Christmas Card Throwdown: Gingerbread

When the color brown showed up in the current challenge at 52 Christmas Card Throwdown, it reminded me that I had Stampin' Up die set from last year that I hadn't given enough love to - the Gingerbread dies.  I paired it with sentiments from the new mini catalog - Christmas Classics.

Happy Christmas Wishes

I love the detail on these gingerbread dies and the set has the peppermint candy too! To make the peppermint candy stand out from the white background, I used some shimmer spritz although I didn't take a good enough picture for it to show. 

I balanced the weight of the gingerbread with a small strip of paper from the same suite of products. I love that it has coordinating frosting swirls! 

A big thank you to 52 Christmas Card Throwdown for reminding me to use this die set!


Stamps: Stampin' Up Christmas Classics

Dies: Stampin' Up Gingerbread, Scalloped Countors

Paper: Stampin' Up Gingerbread & Peppermint 6x6 dsp, cardstock in Cinnamon Cider and Real Red

Ink: Stampin' Up Gingerbread

Other: Shimmer spray, Stampin' Up Toile Tidings Glitter Dots

Wednesday, October 18, 2023

Freshly Made Sketches: Nostalgic Season

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

I got Catherine Pooler's Nostalgic Season set last year and I can't believe I haven't used it. Everything I've seen done with it is absolutely charming. There is a reindeer and a Christmas tree in it and those are the reasons I actually got the set. Since I didn't use those, I guess this needs to remain in my need-to-use basket, at least until the reindeer makes an appearance!!  But isn't it fun that it had these other stamps that worked beautifully with the sketch!

The set has the color blocks for each stamp so for instance, you can easily add three colors to the stockings because there are three separate stamps to add the color!  The garland is from a different set but it absolutely required to have if you have the Nostalgic Season set!

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


Stamps: Catherine Pooler Nostalgic Season and dies, Garland Borders

Cardstock: Papertrey Ink Aqua Mist

Ink: Stampin' Up Flirty Flamingo and Mango Melody, Papertrey Ink Aqua Mist, Taylored Expressions Lime Zest, My Favorite Things Lemon Zest

Monday, October 16, 2023

Hand Stamped Sentiments: Blessings

I thought the current colors at Hand Stamped Sentiments would be great on a fall card with a bit of a unique look. I also was in the mood to truly challenge myself and there are a couple of colors in the challenge that I'm not in love with. (I'm not naming names!)  I just got some fall dies from Lawn Fawn so decided to do a gourd and pumpkin grouping.

Thanksgiving Blessings

The layout and the sentiment took a number of turns but I finally settled on grouping the gourds on top of a die cut sentiment. With the Stitched Gourd and Pumpkins that I just got, I also ordered the Harvest Crate set which also has a signpost.  I had already cut the Blessings (by Photoplay) before realizing that the coordinating stamps for the die were just too small for the signpost - so found a retired Lawn Fawn set that happened to have "thanksgiving"!

I'm still not loving a couple of the colors, but I do like the uniqueness of this combination.  Thank you to Hand Stamped Sentiments for the inspiration!


Stamps: Lawn Fawn Happy Feast - retired ("thanksgiving")

Dies: Lawn Fawn Stitched Gourds, Stitched Pumpkins and Harvest Crate, Photoplay Say It With Stamps Blessings

Paper: Stampin' Up Cardstock in Calypso Coral, Lost Lagoon, Blackberry Bliss and Pebbled Path, Playing with Patterns 6x6 dsp (retired)

Ink: Stampin' Up Blackberry Bliss

Other: Stampin' Up Tinsel Gems 3-Pack, Stampin' Up Subtle Embossing Folder

Thursday, October 12, 2023

52 Christmas Card Throwdown: Joyful and Merry

I'm playing along with the current sketch at 52 Christmas Card Throwdown using three cute little trees by Echo Park.

Joyful and Merry Trees

I loved the idea of three little Christmas images in a row! Then as I was flipping through my Christmas stash, I found these new-to-me Christmas trees and they fit the sketch. I went for cheerful colors, slightly different than typical Christmas colors. It was turning out so light and fresh that I struggled a bit with the stripe behind them because I wanted to keep it subtle. Then I realized sparkly snowbanks fit the sketch and added interest without detracting from these cute little trees. 

A big thank you to 52 Christmas Card Throwdown for the inspiration!


Stamps: Penny Black Jolly Snippets

Dies: Echo Park Three Trimmed Trees

Cardstock: Stampin' Up Daffodil Delight, Mango Melogy, Flirty Flamingo, Coastal Cabana, Granny Apple Green and Pecan Pie, Taylored Expressions Cupcake, My Favorite Things Field Day, glitter paper from Michaels

Ink: My Favorite Things Field Day

Wednesday, October 11, 2023

Freshly Made Sketches: Thankful Grateful Blessed

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!

Thankful Grateful Blessed

I originally imagined this sketch on a more modern card with bright, fresh color palette.  Obviously I didn't end up that way. For me, autumn brings out a classic old-fashioned look and I was definitely feeling it when I made this card! 

The background paper drove the entire card - it's from an old paper pad but it felt like a quilt print to me and that's the mood that I was in. (Of course, it might be that we haven't turned on the furnace in the house yet because it is still getting quite warm during the day, but the early mornings are quite frigid and anything quilt-like is welcome!)  Then I found leaves that fit in little circles. I got this Taylored Expressions die set for an entirely different look - I wanted a variety of fall colors in each little cut-out area - but I like the way it turned out.  Not colorful, but very eye-catching! The sentiment was selected only because it fit in the square! It actually comes from a Gina K Wreath Builder set.

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


Stamps: Gina K Autumn Wreath Builder (the sentiment)

Dies: Taylored Expressions Mosaic Beech Leaf, Stitched Circle Stacklets, Stitched Square Stacklets, Stitched Rectangle Stacklets and Petite Rectangle Scallop Stacklets

Paper: Simple Stories Hello Fall, Stampin' Up Crushed Curry and Misty Moonlight, Taylored Expressions Sweet Potato Pie

Other: Stampin' Up Wonderful Gems

Thursday, October 5, 2023

A Horde of Zombies!

Halloween is just not my favorite holiday. It's a long story involving memories of my childhood a very long time ago when times were simpler and Halloween at least seemed safe, then 30 years of my adult life on a 5-acre property without trick-or-treaters, then moving into town and totally looking forward to trick-or-treaters and the first young one tripping down the single step at my front door and screaming at the top of his lungs.  And that was the end of it! My only nod to Halloween is a garden flag with witch legs in my front yard and the purchase and eating of an entire bag of Mellowcreme pumpkins (which no matter they say, are different from candy corn!)

Zombie Horde

I took a couple of long weekends off of work as the weather cooled to do some cleaning and organizing. That sounds sad, but I actually adore the act of organizing.  My craft desk is included in the clean-up and one thing I decided was to get any Halloween products out of my not-yet-used stash. Then this will be the last year that I send any Halloween cards.  My sons really don't care and my nieces have never really done Halloween so a lack of Halloween cards won't be missed.

Zombie Horde

But I did have to use some zombie products I got from Impression Obsession before it all got stashed away.  They have a fabulous zombie edger die that I actually used for Valentines! See it here.  This year, I'm using their Zombie Sayings set along with a zombie (that I'm not seeing in their store, but maybe I'm missing it). I kept it all very simple - because my husband and adult sons don't like lots of stuff on their cards - but how wonderful are these sayings???

Zombie Horde

I don't usually do Halloween for my husband, but the "Back in my day..." sentiment was too perfect for him.  My youngest son and his phone was also an inspiration for the first card.  The other sentiment that I wanted to use from the sentiment set was "When life closes a door it opens a window. Then zombies climb in and eat you" but for my oldest son who struggled to find a job and whose life is just starting to come together, I just didn't want to burden him with zombies crawling in his window!!!  So "keep calm" just seemed better.

Zombie Horde

I may not love Halloween but those were fun cards to make!!


Stamps: Impression Obsession Zombie Sayings and also a zombie from them

Dies: Memory Box Graveyard Landscape and Dangling Spider, CC Designs Bats, Little B Halloween (the cobweb)

Paper: from a couple of very old pads: Glitz Raven and Doodlebug Haunted Manor, Taylored Expressions cardstock in Sweet Potato Pie and Pumpkin

Wednesday, October 4, 2023

Freshly Made Sketches: Thankful

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!

Thankful Stitched Leaves

The oxidized paper from Stampin' Up might be the prettiest paper I've ever seen.  However, it's very hard to photograph.  I wanted to get a little shine on it but in so doing, the rest of the card just isn't a vibrant white.  Hopefully you get the idea.  One of the oxidized papers comes with some pretty peacock in it; the other paper is just basic colors. I went with the peacock just for the fun of a peacock leaf and sentiment.  

The leaves are an older Stampin' Up die set. I really wanted this year's leaf die set that had the veins of the leaves as a separate die so each leaf is beautifully accented - but it's almost impossible for me to justify another leaf die in my stash.  I do like these retired stitched leaves so I guess I'm OK letting the leaf veins go!!

I needed a smaller sentiment than anything I had in my Stampin' Up stash so I used "thankful" from the Altenew Celebrate us set. It's not a set that you would think would have a word like "thankful" but it does.  Then the white background needed a little something - so I used Papertrey Ink's Stitched Border Bling for just a hint of detail. 

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


Dies: Stampin' Up Stitched Leaves, Altenew Celebrate Us ("thankful"), Papertrey Ink Border Bling: Stitched

Paper: Stampin' Up Oxidized Copper Specialty dsp, cardstock in Copper Clay and Pretty Peacock

Other: Stampin' Up Adhesive-Backed Speckled Dots

Sunday, October 1, 2023

Atlantic Hearts Sketch: So Very Thankful

I saw the sketch at the Atlantic Heart Sketch challenge and I had a new-to-me leaf die on my desk along with some new fall papers - and it all came together!!

So Very Thankful

Fall, my favorite season, is very late this year.  We were in the mountains last week. We were there almost exactly a year ago and saw the most amazing fall colors that I had ever seen (at least in Colorado!)  Even today, my glorious red maple tree outside my craft room window has one red branch - the rest is solidly green. So I'll have to celebrate fall through cardmaking. 

I got the leaf die because of a variety of cards that I saw with this branch from PinkFresh cut multiple times for a large bouquet of leaves - it's a wonderful look. But when I saw the sketch, I thought it would work well dangling from the top with a little bow.  The sentiment is new from The Greetery in their August release - Thanks All Ways. It's a fabulous stamp/die set with large "Thanks", "Thankful" and "Thanksgiving" along with alot of little sentiments to fit those words.  Exactly the kind of set that I adore!

Thanks to the Atlantic Hearts Sketch challenge for the inspiration!


Stamps: The Greetery Thanks All Ways and dies

Dies: PinkFresh Fall Leaf

Paper: LDRS Creative Songbird Fields, Taylored Expressions Blue Corn cardstock

Ink: Taylored Expressions Sweet Potato Pie

Other: YNS Sugar Rush Gumdrops

Wednesday, September 27, 2023

Freshly Made Sketches: Christmas Stained Glass

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!

Christmas Stained Glass

The first step was looking for something in a big circle - preferably in my Christmas or Thanksgiving stash. I found this nativity and couldn't believe I hadn't used it. Then I started picking colors.  I quickly settled on Stampin' Up's Petal Pink and then I decided to use the two coordinating colors from last year's in-colors - Starry Sky and Orchid Oasis.  When they came out, I thought they would be the most perfect Christmas colors ever, although more from the winter aspect not really for a nativity! Then when last year's holiday catalog came out - they weren't there at all.  And they aren't there this year.  I feel like they added two in-colors that none of their designers liked.  But I like them - even on a nativity scene!

The plan was to do the actual stripe from the sketch with a sentiment but even with my large stash of sentiments, I just didn't have the right sentiment for the stripe.  So I went with a longer straight sentiment but not on a stripe. 

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


Dies: Paper Rose Christmas Stained Glass Circle, Echo Park Merry Christmas

Paper: Stampin' Up Petal Pink, Starry Sky and Orchid Oasis, My Favorite Things In the Buff, Taylored Expressions Toffee

Other: Stampin' Up Distressed Tile 3D Embossing Folder

Wednesday, September 20, 2023

Freshly Made Sketches: Wishing You Joy

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

Wishing You Joy

I started with great intentions to follow the sketch exactly - right down to the leaf.  It wasn't working for me so I changed ideas...then changed again...and again.  I finally settled on a reindeer but after all the changing, now I'm feeling like I have to struggle a bit to see the sketch. I was definitely inspired...the sentiment along the bottom with two small strips of color above it is not something I would have thought to do without the sketch. I moved my main image off center at the last minute when I decided he really needed to be looking at a star.

The cute little reindeer is from Impression Obsession and there's actually a second one in the set - you can see him in the dies in the corner of the photo. Or leave the antlers off and you have a reindeer couple! The sentiment is from Mama Elephant. Nothing in the set is Christmas-related so this one probably isn't either, but it worked! The set comes with one plain banner to put behind the words, but I cut it in silver and blue, then moved the die and cut a thinner strip for my two narrow stripes. 

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


Dies: Impression Obsession Two Folk Deer, Mama Elephant Banner Greetings, Alexandra Renke Snowflake Cloud, Memory Box Postage Square Layers and Star of Wonder

Paper: Stampin' Up Pecan Pie, Crumb Cake, Granny Apple Green and Coastal Cabana cardstock plus Brights 6x6 dsp; Memory Box Majestic Hues Glitter Pad and Polished Foil Pad

Wednesday, September 13, 2023

Freshly Made Sketches: Playful Pumpkins

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

This fairly new set from Concord & 9th has both fun stamps (and dies to cut those stamps) and also some stand-alone dies. Last week, at the last minute, I needed a few leaves and flowers so pulled just those out of the set (since it had just arrived in the mail and was still sitting on my desk). But right then, I put this card together.  I couldn't just pull a few leaves and flowers when all of these fun little pumpkins and sentiments were waiting to be used! I don't make a lot of Halloween cards - really just my two older teenage nieces and probably my son's girlfriend.  So the cards can be cute but not too young - I thought these jack-lanterns were just perfect.

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

Stamps: Concord & 9th Playful Pumpkins and dies
Paper: Catherine Pooler Sweet-n-Spooky 6x6, Taylored Expressions Strawberry Milkshake, Candy Corn and Mushroom
Ink: Taylored Expressions Mushroom, Strawberry Milkshake, Candy Corn and Plum Punch