Tuesday, October 6, 2015

Stamp Factory Cards for October

Every month I offer what I call a "Stamp Factory" class. We create a total of 8 cards - 4 each of 2 designs. Whenever you're stamping multiple cards like this, it's like having an assembly line of cards to stamp and make.

Card #1
This card features the Timeless Elegance Designer Series Paper and the Greetings Thinlits dies.  Just add a "pop" of color to the designer paper using ink and a dauber (I used Blushing Bride on this card).

Built for Free Using: My Stampin Blog

Card #2
Snowflakes and Christmas!  This card showcases the Flurry of Wishes stamp set and the coordinating Snow Flurry Punch.  I used Night of Navy card stock and ink for this quick and easy card.  Use a touch of white ribbon from the Gold and White ribbon combo pack behind the snowflakes.

Built for Free Using: My Stampin Blog

I'm really excited about this months cards! Both are simple and elegant!

If you live in the Dallas / Fort Worth area and would like to attend, be sure to RSVP so I can be sure to have enough supplies prepared for everyone (contact me for exact location).

Happy stamping and creating!

Monday, October 5, 2015

Halloween Card Swaps from Founder's Circle 2015

Do you love to decorate and send treats and cards for Halloween?  I just love handing a little decorated bag with goodies inside to my friends, neighbors and trick-or-treaters!  During Founder's Circle this year, I received these amazing (and adorable) Halloween projects.

Created by Rose Marie Coleman

This is like a little easel card.  I love fun fold cards like this.

Created by Jenn Gulch
Yummy treat holder with gum inside!

Created by Janet Baker
Don't you just love the withes hat?

Created by Kimberly

Who's ready to do a little decorating and creating for Halloween!  I know I am!

Happy Stamping,

Sunday, October 4, 2015

Join Paper Pumpkin and Help "Stamp Out Breast Cancer"

To show our support for Breast Cancer Awareness Month, Stampin' Up! is going PINK . . . or at least the October Paper Pumpkin boxes are! Stampin' Up! will be making a donation on behalf of all active and new subscribers to the Breast Cancer Research Foundation (BCRF).

Sara Douglas stopped by a local morning show,  Good Things Utah, to spread the word about Paper Pumpkin teaming up with the Brest Cancer Research Foundation in October. 

Stampin' Up! will donate:
  • $1 for every active Paper Pumpkin subscriber.
  • Plus, an additional $1 for every new subscriber.

Here's how you can help: 
  1. Subscribe! If you're new to Paper Pumpkin, click here to get started. Your first kit will arrive in a limited-edition pink box that you'll want to hold onto forever-and we'll donate $2 because you're new!
  2. Subscribe by October 10th to get this month's kit. Only those who receive the October shipment will be counted for the donation.
  3. Spread the word! Invite your friends and family to join Paper Pumpkin, too! I love getting that cute little box of creativity every month and I know you will, too!

Together, we will make a difference!

Here's to happy stamping and creating with Paper Pumpkin!

Saturday, October 3, 2015

World Card Making Day 2015

Happy World Card Making Day 2015!

I was trying to decide what (if anything) I should do for World Card Making Day and after much deliberation, I decided to .....go to the TCU football game!  Ha! Ha! (We are college football junkies!)

Actually, that's what I'm going to be doing first, then I'll be back home spending the afternoon putting more of my card kits together!

Did you have a chance to check out the tips and ideas video I did about the Watercolor Wishes card kit?  This is an amazing kit and I'm so excited with the results!

Features of the Watercolor Wishes Kit:

  • 20 card with envelopes
  • Stamp set included!
  • Clear block for your stamps!
  • Pre-water colored designs on each card!
  • Die cut pieces that are easy to punch out
  • Ink spots included
  • Coordinating Washi Tape
  • And More!
It's all in there!  This kit is really an all-inclusive kit!

This is just one of several kits from the Annual Catalog and there are even more kits in the Holiday Catalog!

I am currently working on the Cottage Greetings kit.  (Not the best picture but I literally just snapped the pic with the cards laying on my dining room table.)

Have you tried any of the Stampin' Up! kits before?  One thing is for sure - they're easy but beautiful!  I wish I could share with you the quality of the card stock bases and embellishments.  I know if you give the kits a try, you're going to love them!

I hope that no matter how you spend World Card Making Day 2015 (whether watching football or not), that you enjoy a day of creativity!  

Creativity is meant to be shared!

Built for Free Using: My Stampin Blog

Happy Stamping,

Friday, October 2, 2015

Founder's Circle Swap Time and PJ Party!

What would a Stampin' Up! event be without swapping?  And, to make it an even more memorable evening, it was a pajama party! What a hoot!

Everyone lined up in the hallway and we wound our way to the final room (where the party was happening!).

As people walked by, you dropped in your card and they gave you there's until the line finally folds on itself.

In the "party" room there was plenty of laughter, chatter and "oohing" and "aahing" over all the cards.

Below are a few cards created with trees from the Wonderland stamp set and coordinating products.  So elegant! It's going to be taking me awhile to share all 110 swaps but I'll also be posting more on my Facebook page so be sure to head over there, too, and check them out.

Created by Kay Shepherd

Created by Lyssa Zwolanek

Created by Mindy Gray

Built for Free Using: My Stampin Blog

More pictures to come!
Happy Stamping,

Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Founder's Circle Trip 2015 - Part 1

I was honored to be a recognized as a top 100 Stampin' Up! demonstrator (known as Founder's Circle) and was treated to an unforgettable retreat this month!  And, before I go any further I have to say "Thank you!".  Thank you to my readers, customers, stamping friends and family for supporting me and encouraging me along my Stampin' Up! journey.  My "little" hobby has turned into something so much more that I never dreamed possible.  I am so grateful for each and everyone of you.  Thank you for taking this journey with me!

The theme of the event was "Last Splash" because this was the last time that Stampin' Up! will have this retreat. They will be doing new and different incentives in the future (we'll have to wait and see what's coming!).

Outside in the back of the hotel everything was decorated for the evening meal together. The weather was perfect and it was a great time of catching up with old friends and making new ones!

Every table had it's own cake in the center.  YUM!

And since we were one of the last tables to get to the buffet line, we decided to dive into our cake first!  It. was. delicious.  (And well worth eating it first!)

The cake didn't stand a chance!

Every night a special surprise waited for us on our bed!  (Did I tell you that each of us attending had our own room?  Totally spoiled.)  I can't show you what's in this bag yet.  Let's just say that some amazing new goodies are coming!  Eeeekkkk,

From our hotel in St. George, it was an easy drive to go check out Zion National Park.  Who would have thought that rocks and dirt could be so pretty!

We even got a tour at the Stampin' Up! facilities in Kanab, Utah where stamps, ink and paper are manufactured.  What an interesting and insightful tour!  I have such a better appreciation for all those who work for Stampin' Up!

Checking out how our Photopolymer stamps are made.  Very cool process!

Decided I needed to be in one of the pictures.  Amazing facility!

Big mixing bowls that spread the ink on the firm foam ink pads.  Too funny to watch the foam pads get "mixed" in a big bowl.

They are #1 in my book!

There is so much more I want to share but I think I've gone on long enough today. I hope you are enjoying this inside look into Founder's Circle.  It's hard to believe that this was the last one - it was such a memorable trip that I would have loved to been a part of it again.

I'll be back tomorrow to share more - from the swaps (and PJ party to the final event).  And, some of the following posts will be all about the swaps - I came home with over 100 amazing swaps!  You're going to love the ideas and inspiration!

Happy Stamping,

Thursday, September 24, 2015

New Stampers - Tip #5

Today's last tip in my Top 5 Tips for New Stampers is all about being in community! (I hope you're enjoying these tips - I know there aren't really many pictures to go along with these tips but I hope you're getting some good ideas at least!)

One of the best ways to learn new techniques, find inspiration and make new friends is by being a part of a stamping group. 

If you're in the Dallas / Fort Worth area, I'd like to invite you to join in the stamping fun at one of my monthly stamp classes. I do everything from quick and simple cards, to different techniques and different fun fold  cards every month and guests are always welcome!  View my complete list of classes online here.

Another way to look for a stamping group is through Meet Up. Have you heard of this website before? Simply search what kind of group you're looking for and they'll let you know if there are any groups meeting in your area.  

If you don't find anything, don't be discouraged.  Start your own group! Gather your friends together and just enjoy a night of playing with stamps, ink and paper.  You'll learn so much more by gathering with others.  Find a video tutorial online, gather with your friends and try it out! The key is just being together!

Here's a quick recap of my Top 5 Tips for New Stampers:

  1. Find Inspiration
  2. Make More Than One Card at a Time
  3. Sizing of Mat
  4. Don't Get Discouraged
  5. Be a Part of a Stamping Community
I hope these tips have helped you get motivated to start stamping and try creating new things (even just a little bit!).  

I'm proud of my friend Brenda for not throwing in the towel. Even though her first card took longer than she would have liked (get her story here), I know the more she stamps and follows these tips, it will become easier and easier to design, stamp and create!

Would you like to see the card she made?  She did such a great job!

Thank you Brenda for letting me share it!

Do you have any tips for first-time stampers?  Or are you a new stamper and can relate to Brenda's story?  I would love to hear your feedback!

Happy Stamping,

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

New Stampers - Tips #3 and #4

Based on my friend's email, I've created a list of my Top 5 Tips for New Stampers and today I will be sharing with you Tip #3 and Tip #4.

Tip #3 - Sizing of Mats (Basic Pieces for a Card)

To mat a stamped piece of card stock:  Let's say I stamp a sentiment on a square piece of paper that measures 2".  If I want a thin border of card stock, I will cut a mat measuring 2 1/4" X 2 1/4".  If I want a bigger mat, then the card stock would be cut 2.5" X 2.5".

To make a mat for the front of a card:  Sometimes I will create mats that will be based on the dimensions of the front of my card (and not based on my stamped piece).  Since the front of the card measures 4 1/4" X 5 1/2", I could simply take off 1/4" or 1/2" (based on how big I want the "border) of my mats.  I know that any one of the following mats would look good on the front of my card:
4" X 5 1/4"
3 3/4" X 5"
3 1/2" X 4 3/4"
3 1/4" X 4 1/2"

Thin borders, I would cut:
4 1/8" X 5 3/8"
4" X 5 /14"

In the sample picture below, the front of the card measures 4 1/4" X 5.5".  The Early Espresso mat is 4" X 5 1/4" and the embossed Very Vanilla piece of card stock measures 3 3/4" X 5".  (For an even thinner mat, you could also cut this piece to 3 7/8" X 5 1/8".) 

Tip #4 - Don't Get Discouraged (Just Keep Stamping, Stamping...)

You will get faster as you go!  Don't be discouraged!  Keep playing!  The next time you sit down to make a card, it will go faster. And, once you have a design you like, try changing an element on it (change the paper, sentiment, stamp used, etc.) and you'll be shocked at not only how fast it goes but how different the card looks!  Once I find a design/layout I like, I stick with it and use it over and over (why re-invent the wheel right?).

In the immortal words of Dorie the fish, "Just keep stamping, just keep stamping, stamping, stamping," or was that "swimming?".  Ha! Ha!

If you are a new stamper (or paper crafter) and have questions for me, please comment below.  I'd love to help you out however I can!  If you are a seasoned stamper and would like to share a tip, please also comment! I appreciate the feedback!  (And, I know there are lots of other tips out there that I haven't thought of.)

Here's to more fun stamping and creating!

Monday, September 21, 2015

My Top 5 Tips for New Stampers - Tip #1 and Tip #2

I received an email the other day from my friend Brenda who had just created her own card from scratch.  Here's what her email said:

"So it took me almost 3 hours the other night to create this one card. Between trying to decide what to do and then cutting and recutting paper (because I didn't cut the correct size!) to the actual making.  What are some helpful tips to being ready when you sit down to do card making? Do you have pre-cut cards already (similar to when we come to stamp class) so that when you have some time to make a few cards just pick the various size paper/color to go with style. When you make one, do you make 3 or 4 of same at same time?"

My friend was so proud of her card (as she should be!) but was discouraged by the amount of time it had taken her to make it. Have you ever felt that way?  You're excited to get started but then 3 hours later, you might have one card or project to show for all that time.  I had the same experience when I first started stamping, too!

Her email has inspired me to create today's blog post - all about tips and suggestions for those who are new to stamping and don't want to spend a ton of hours just making a card or tow.

Tip #1Find Inspiration
When I sit down to stamp, I first need to find a little inspiration and for that, I turn to the Stampin' Up! catalogs (Annual catalog and the Holiday catalog) as well as Splitcoaststampers.  Splitcoast has a wealth of card ideas!  Simply type the name of the stamp set in the search box (in the gallery) and you'll get page after page of ideas.

Finding inspiration helps give me a starting point.  If I find a card I like, I start playing.  Don't worry if you don't have all the supplies in your inspiration piece - use what you have!  Change the stamps, paper and/or ink and you'll be amazed at your own card creation!

In the crafting world, this is called "CASEing" - Copy and Share Everything.  Copying is the highest form of flattery. It's not a bad thing to copy.  If you do copy a card exactly (using same colors, images, paper, etc.), give credit to the originator.  

Tip #2 - Make More Than One Card at a Time
Once I have found my inspiration card or idea, I will usually make 2, 4 or 8 cards at a time.  Since you can get 2 cards from one piece of 8.5" X 11" card stock, it's easier to cut for multiplies rather than one card at a time.

Card stock bases generally are 8.5" X 5.5" (scored at 4 1/4") or 4 1/4" X 11" (scored at 5.5"). 

It only take a few extra minutes to cut more card stock or to stamp a few more pieces and when you're done crafting, you'll feel so much more accomplished to have lots of cards instead of just one.

I hope you have found these first couple tips handy!  If you have any questions about getting started stamping OR if you have a suggestion to help new stampers, please leave a comment!  I'd love to hear your feedback and ideas.

Here's to a happy stamping experience!

Friday, September 18, 2015

Behind the Scenes with Videos

Ever wonder how I do my videos?  I just hosted a team event all about making videos and I thought it would be fun to share a "behind the scenes" look at how I do my videos.

Here's Vicki recording her first video.  (My hubby and son made all these PVC camera stands for each participant.)

Getting everything set up and ready

The video group!  What a fun afternoon!

I really enjoy making videos and sharing my love of paper crafting with you!  I hope you enjoy watching and being inspired!

Some additional pictures (Hope this helps, Tracey, with putting together your own stand.  Let me know if you have any other questions.)  Enjoy!

Top of stand with camera holder:

Base of stand: