Teaching an old dog…well, you know the rest

I started playing around with this blog months ago (I’m embarrassed to say just how many!), but just felt so overwhelmed that I backed away from the keyboard.  I already had a blog that is tied to my Stampin’ UP! website and I taught myself how to use that.  I’ll tell you, it wasn’t easy.  I’d stumble, fall down and pick myself up and try again.  And I finally felt fairly comfortable using the blog feature, so much so that I offered training for some of my demonstrator friends.  I was pretty happy that I had figured out how to use it and could share that skill with others who were struggling with it.  And wouldn’t you know it,  just as I started to get ready to roll out some structured training, we found out that Stampin’ UP! is going to do away with the blogging feature of our website.  I immediately went into panic mode!! We knew that things were going to be updated  but since so many demonstrators had already decided to use different blogging platforms,  SU! didn’t feel that the effort it would take to overhaul our existing format was time and money well spent.  They encouraged us to find a platform that was more user-friendly.   And since the existing blog will be going away in a few short weeks, it was the push I needed to figure out how to use my Word Press blog.

So, that brings me to where I am now…learning a new blogging tool.  I used to do software training when I worked in the corporate world and I really did enjoy it.  I liked learning how to use all the features and then showing others how to use them.  Don’t get me wrong, there were lots of challenges involved but there was great satisfaction in finally feeling comfortable using a new tool.  So that’s what I’ll be doing over the new few weeks, learning how to use the tools with this new platform.  And to be honest, it hasn’t been terrible so far.  I think I’ve got the basics down, I just need to delve into the more complex options to make sure I’m using this blog to it’s fullest capacity.   I have duplicated all the posts from my Stampin’ UP! blog over to this blog, you’ll see them listed in the Archive section.  Take a look and catch up!

I do think it’s important to learn something new every day, and it doesn’t have to be something major. Little things count too. I think this is one of the things I enjoy about crafting is that I do continually learn new things. My main interest is paper crafting but I like doing other things. The first craft I ever learned was how to do embroidery and I was taught by my maternal grandmother.  She embroidered a lot of things, pillow cases, table covers, chair arm covers (remember those??). And she loved to crochet and tried to teach me but I was never able to get the hang of it back then. I’ve also learned to cross stitch, sew (made a lot of my own clothes while in High School), decorated cakes, t-shirt painting, knitting and I did finally tackle crocheting again although I’m still very much a beginner. But paper crafting and card making have been a staple for me. I love giving hand made cards. I can personalize them to the recipient based on their likes. And the feedback that I get reminds me that people do still like to get mail! Let’s face it, we all get tired of bills and advertisements every day. A hand made card breaks the monotony and hopefully puts a smile on their faces.

So, getting back to the topic at hand, you are never too old to learn something new. If you’ve never tried creating a card from scratch, you are missing out!  I would love to help you experience it. I hold monthly classes at my home and I’d love to show you how easy it is to create a beautiful handmade card. You have nothing to lose and might find that you enjoy this craft as much as I do!  There’s a minimal monthly fee to attend which covers materials and project preparation.  You can find my schedule by clicking on the Upcoming Events option at the top of this blog.  For those who are not local, do not despair!  I am planning on starting to do some online sessions as well, probably through Facebook Live and also doing video segments that I hope to be posting to YouTube sometime soon.  I hope you’ll join me there as well.

Thanks for visiting me in this new “home” for my blog.  I would love for you to subscribe so that you don’t miss any future posts.  You’ll find that option on the sidebar.  And remember to always keep learning!

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NC Demos March Blog Hop – Cute Critters

Welcome to our NC Demos March Blog Hop!  I am so happy you decided to check us out.  We have a record number of demonstrators participating this month, so there are lots to check out.  You may have hopped here from Trish Todd’s blog, and I know her project was just amazing!

I’m so thrilled that this month’s theme is Cute Critters laugh  We have quite a  selection of stamps sets pertaining to critters, so it was a little difficult for me to narrow down the card I wanted to submit.   We recently added several adorable sets in the current Occasions Catalog, so I decided to choose one of them.

The stamp set is called Happy Tails and I used the coordinating Dog Builder Punch.  Isn’t it just too cute??  You can stamp the dog just as it is, or you can add large or small spots.  And of course, there is the prerequisite dog house along with some other accessories.  The sentiments are cute too! 

dog heart builder punchdog stamp set

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The front of the card is fairly simple.  I stamped the dog using the smaller spots, stamped the collar and punched it out.  Then I stamped the dog house in black and used Real Red for the primary color.  Next, I stamped several grass images using a stamp from the High Tide set.  I used a sponge dauber and Garden Green Ink to add some depth to the grassy area,  I added Dimensionals to the dog and placed him next to the dog house.  Then I took a scrap of Crumb Cake cardstock and stamped and cut out the bone and placed it over the door for decoration.  And last but not least, I stamped the sentiment, hand cut it into 2 pieces and then layered with Real Red and Basic Black.
I had a specific idea of what I wanted to do with the inside of this card.  I attempted to do a pop-up card of sorts.  It’s kind of hard to see it from the photos.  But, the dog houses do pop out when you open the card.  I guess I’m going to have to figure out how to add videos to my blog posts so I can show things like this!   You can see a little more of the fold in the picture on the right…

 

 

 

 For the dog house strip, I used the Stamparatus to evenly stamp 4 houses,  Then I fussy cut around the peaks of the houses and left about 1/4″ of cardstock on each side to use for adhering the strip to the inside of the card.  I then scored between each house and about 1/4″ from each end to allow for the flaps.. The strip was then folded like an accordion and I placed tear tape on each end.  I practiced my positioning so that the card would close without any of the folded strip peeking out, but it also needed to pop out when the card was opened.  Once I was satisfied with the positioning, I removed the tear tape backing and pressed each end to make sure the strip was secure. I finished the inside with 2 panels of Whisper White and used the Detailed Trio Punch to add a little pop. I definitely would like to practice this a little more, but for my first attempt, I was pleased with how it turned out.  Supplies for this card are listed below. 

 

I hope you enjoyed my Cute Critter.  If you love Happy Tails as much as I do, you can order the bundle HERE.  Since this set was introduced in the current Occasions catalog, we don’t know yet if it will carry over to the next Annual Catalog so get it now while you still can!   (Savings Tip:  Did you know that when we offer a stamp set with a coordinating punch or set of dies, you can save 10% when you purchase them as a bundle?)   

Now please continue on to see what the rest of this talented group selected as their Cute Critters.  I know you won’t be disappointed…!  Sue Stapp is the next stamper on the list smiley

Thanks for visiting!!

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NC Demos February Blog Hop – Keeping it in the Lines

Hello!  Welcome to our monthly NC Demos Blog Hop!  You may have just visited Frances Wagner’s blog and seen her amazing project! Thank you for continuing on through the rest of this months hop participants. 

Our theme for this month is ‘Keeping it in the Lines’. We were challenged with using our favorite line stamp set (how do you pick just one!) and then using our favorite coloring method.  SU! provides a LOT of options for that.  I find that I always forget how much I like coloring until I sit down and do it.  I will say, I definitely have to be in the mood for it, but once I start it is so relaxing to me.

The stamp set I chose was one that I received as a gift at last April’s On Stage event.  And I’m slightly embarrased to say that this is the first time I’ve used it surprise.  It is such a pretty set of images, I just felt like they were so small and I wasn’t quite sure what I’d want to create with them.  So the poor stamp set sat on the shelf, just waiting to be loved! (Click on the image if you’d like to add this to YOUR stamp collection!) In Every Season Clear-Mount Stamp Set

I knew I wanted to do something other than a card this month, and I have quite a few shadow boxes in my craft room inventory so I started to think of a project using one of them.  And since I am anxiously waiting for some signs of Spring, this stamp set immediately came to mind.

I chose 3 images, stamped them using Memento Ink and picked the colors of Stampin’ Blends I wanted to use and then I got busy.  And just an added note, when you are coloring with our Stampin’ Blends (alcohol markers) you must use Memento ink so that the outline doesn’t bleed.  After I fnished coloring, I felt like the images looked a little too plain, so I grabbed my Light Soft Sea Foam Blends and created a backgound for the images.  I really like how it made the images pop.

                   

After I finished coloring everything, I mounted the images on to Basic Black squares.
I tried several different colors of cardstock to use as the  background of  my 5×7 shadow box, but I just couldnt find a color that really made the images stand out.  So, I just went with white.  And to give it a little texture, I scored lines vertically every 1/2″.  It’s hard to see in the finished project unless you are holding it close.  And a little bonus of having the vertical lines, it made lining up my squares a LOT easier!
And this is the finished project.  A nice, clean home decor item that can be displayed pretty much all year!  I do apologize for the quality of the photo, it’s difficult to get a good image when you are trying to photograph something with a glass front cheeky  All the supplies used are at the bottom of my post.

Thanks so much for visiting my blog!  Please continue hopping along with us this month and visit the extremely talented  Jo Anne Hewins.  I know she has another fabulous project for us!

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Sale-a-Bration 2nd Release Items

Today we are going to take a look at the new Sale-a-Bration releases.  We’ve added 3 new items for you to choose from!

First up is a new stamp set called All Adorned (149728) and a sample card made using this set.  I love the sentiments and the images in this set.  This is available at the $50 level.

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The next new offering is Country Floral Dynamic Embossing Folder (149698) and a sample card.  The image this folder produces is STUNNING!!  There are so many possibilities for using this.  You can emboss on foil papers, emboss on Whisper White card stock and use our markers to color in the detail (as seen in the sample card), any apply ink directly to the embossing folder are just a few of the ideas.  This is available at the $50 level.

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And last but certainly not least is the Painted Seasons Bundle (150349) which comes with the stamp set and Designer series paper .  This bundle is available at the $100 level.  The patterns in the set of DSP are amazing!

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Click HERE to see a video that gives you a little more detail about this bundle.

I hope you’ve enjoyed seeing the new SAB offerings!  And if you’d like to see everything that’s available at both levels, along with some amazing projects, please visit my website by clicking HERE .

Thanks for stopping by today!

January NC Demos Blog – A Perfect Pair

Welcome to our January NC Demos Blog Hop!  This is a GREAT start to the New Year because we have brand NEW bloggers this month!!  Woo Hoo!! I’m so glad to see new people joining our hop, it’s just so much fun and a great way to share.  You may have just come from Frances Wagner’s Blog and I know she had a great project!

Our theme for this month is “A Perfect Pair”.  We were to create something using items from both the current Occasions Catalog and the Annual Catalog.  I know that everyone gets so excited when we unveil a new Annual Catalog, but a few months after that we come out with the Holiday Catalog.  And then a few months later there’s a new Occasions Catalog. I think we tend to forget our great Annual catalog when all the new goodies come out.  So, this is a great way to make sure we aren’t forgetting it!

My project wasn’t supposed to be displayed until this blog posted, BUT I recently attended our NC Demonstrator Quarterly event and at the last minute, I decided to submit my card in one of the contests that are always held during these events.  And to my honor and surprise, my card was in a 3-way tie for first place!  The category was Simple Stamping (what we used to call Easy to Demonstrate).  I was so glad I decided to submit it!

                                                                                                                                                                    The idea for this card had been bouncing around in my head for a few days.  I love the new Geared Up Garage bundle, but I wanted to see if I could venture outside the masculine mindset.
I immediately thought PINK and from there the rest of the card fell into place.  I colored the car image using Lt. Flirty Flamingo blends and cut it out using one of the car dies.Then I went right to our Fabulous Flamingo set in the Annual Catalog because I remembered that there was a sentiment that said “tickled pink for you”…PERFECT!

I stamped the sentiment on a scrap piece of Powder Pink cardstock and punched it using the Tailored Tag Punch, which is also in the Annual catalog.

 

Using another scrap of paper, this time Smokey Slate, I punched another tag.  I cut that in half horizontally and then mounted each piece so that it framed the top and bottom of the Tickled Pink tag.

 


Next I used the “oil splatter” stamp with Smokey Slate ink.  Then to add a little texture to the Whisper White mat I used the Subtles Dynamic Embossing folder, lightly spritzing the cardstock with water before running it through the Big Shot.  This softens the fibers in the paper which allows it to show much more dimension from the folder.  Just be careful not to saturate the card, just a light mist will do the trick.  The pink car was adhered with Tombow directly to the Whisper White embossed piece.  I cut a small piece of Striped Metallic ribbon and placed behind the tag and then attached it to the card with dimensionals.

      

     
I hope you enjoyed my out of the box idea for this masculine set.  And that you won’t forget our amazing Annual catalog while you are playing with your new purchases from the Occasions catalog.  There are so many opportunities to find A Perfect Pair!And just a quick reminder, no matter which catalog you purchase from, you will earn free Sale-a-Bration items for every $50 increment!  This promotion ends on March 31st., so make sure you are making the most of it!  It’s a great time to shop, host and JOIN Stampin’ UP!  I’d love to have you on my team laugh

I hope you will continue hopping with us and visit our next talented demonstrator and first time NC Demo Blog hopper, Jackie Claes.  And I equally excited to share that Jackie is part of my team, Stamping Companions.  I so happy that she has decided to join us this month smiley.

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Sale-a-Bration – What’s it all about?

We have just started a very exciting time of year at Stampin’ UP!  If you are new to SU!, you may not be familiar so I’d like to explain why it’s so special.  And if you have been around for a while, it never hurts to refresh your memory! During Sale-a-Bration, there are 3 ways that you can benefit from the promotion.  The first is that you can earn FREE merchandise, just for placing your normal orders.  For every $50 or $100 order (total before shipping & tax) you get to select something free from the SAB catalog!  Many of the items are created to coordinate with items in our new Occasions Catalog, so you’ll want to have both the SAB brochure  AND the Occasions catalog handy when placing orders.  And if you prefer to have real copies in your hand versus the online versions, please let me know and I’ll get them to you!  You can shop on my website here.

The 2nd special deal during this promotion is that you can earn ADDITIONAL HOST BENEFITS when your order reaches $250.  And you DON’T actually have to host a workshop!  This is a great time to stock up on stamping supplies for yourself, or combine your order with a friend (or friends!) and earn $25 MORE in stamping rewards! 
And the 3rd, and probably my favorite benefit is the added bonus you can receive if you decide to join SU! during SAB.  The normal kit price is $99, which would allow you to choose $125 in product for your kit.  BUT, during SAB, you will receive an additional $50 in product!!  Yes, that’s right, you would choose $175 worth of merchandise for just $99!  (Host sets and SAB items are excluded from the kit merchandise selection). 

And as if that wasn’t enough of a deal, SU! has sweetened the pot by giving you ANOTHER option for joining.  For just $129, you will STILL get $175 in product, but in ADDITION, you will receive this amazing Craft Tote to carry all of your goodies!  The tote is valued at $50, so you are saving $20!  This tote is one of the best I’ve ever seen SU! offer, and I’ve been a demonstrator for over 20 years.  It holds so much, it can even hold our Stampin’ Trimmer, something none of my other totes will do.  Here are a few pics, but they honestly don’t do it justice.

And here’s a quick video to show you all the features and benefits.  And just a reminder, the ONLY way to get this Craft Tote is to join SU! during Sale-a-Bration.  It is exclusively for new recruits!   Oh, and I almost forgot, you also get FREE shipping on your kit!

So, what are the benefits of joining Stampin’ UP!, aside from the 2 great kit options being offered right now?  Well, I’m glad you asked!  Here they are:

  • You get to create your own kit!  Choose ANY Stampin’ Up! products (including bundles) to fill your kit.  (Host sets and Sale-A-Bration gifts are excluded.)
  • 20 to 25% discount on future purchases!  Purchase the starter kit in January and receive a 20% discount (up to 25%) on additional demonstrator purchases thru a minimum of July 31, 2019.  This timeframe allows you to enjoy your discount on the new annual catalog pre-order, which happens in May (the catalog launches in June!)
  • Perfect timing!  You will have the same amount of time (through July 31, 2019) to reach your first $300 sales minimum and renew for the Stampin’ Up! July – September quarter.  Each quarter requirement is $300 in sales after that, and you are given one month’s grace period should you not reach that requirement by the end of the quarter.
  • Enjoy demonstrator discounts and benefits while you are active with no risk and no penalty to drop.
  • As a demonstrator, you get exclusive views of new product and catalogs!   View new catalogs and pre-order products a month (or more) before their release (and at a discount)! 
  • A perfect fit!  This offer is for those who are just looking for a hobby, or if you want to work it as a business.  YOU make the choice.
  • It’s just FUN!!!  There are no obligations to host workshops or parties, sell products to anyone else or personally purchase anything once you’ve purchased the kit!  If you decide that it’s just not for you, that’s fine.  Again, THERE IS NO OBLIGATION! 

But if you’re anything like me, you’ll want to keep on gaining all the benefits that come with being a demonstrator.  I have a great team of demonstrators and we LOVE welcoming new members!  You can become a member of my team by clicking here and filling out all the info.  And if you have ANY questions, just reach out to me, I’m more than happy to answer or walk you through the process.

So, that’s all the info about Sale-a-Bration! WOW!!  As I said, it’s an exciting time.   Just remember, SAB ends on 3/31, so don’t delay in taking advantage of all SAB has to offer laugh
Happy Stamping!

 

NC Demos December Blog Hop – Sale-A-Bration Celebration!

Welcome to my post for this month’s NC Demos Blog Hop! I appreciate you taking the time to check us out this month.  I know that everyone has been so busy preparing and celebrating Christmas, so I hope you take advantage of being able to just sit and enjoy the projects we all created for this month.  You may have just come from Frances Wagner’s Blog.  If you did, I know that you loved her project, she’s so very creative!
This month’s theme is Sale-A-Bration (SAB).  This is a yearly promotion that allows you to earn FREE items based on your purchases.  For every $50 you spend, you can earn something for free.  And you can choose from stamp sets, Designer Series paper, embellishments, dies, and kits!  There’s something for everyone.  If you do NOT have a SAB brochure, please let me know and I’ll get one out to you immediately!  AND, if you’ve ever thought about joining the Stampin’ UP! family, SAB is a great time to do so.  You already get a great deal when you sign up to be a demonstrator, but during SAB, you get so much more!!  Contact me if you’d like more information about it laugh

For my project this month, I decided to use the Home to Roost stamp set.  I love the style of this set.  The Rooster lends itself well to just be stamped in a single color, or stamped in black and colored with Stampin’ Write Markers, Stampin’ Blends or Watercolor Pencils.  I decided to go with a simple design.  And honestly, after the hustle and bustle of the holiday, I NEEDED simple, lol!  I think this card would be great to show a beginning stamper.  It’s not overly complicated, just ink (Stampin’ Blends, in this case), stamps and paper!

I almost always gravitate to full-size cards when I’m creating, but decided to use our note cards this time.  I cut Whisper White cardstock into a 2 1/2 x 2 1/2 square and stamped the rooster using Memento Black ink.  Then I colored him using the light Stampin’ Blend versions of Real Red, Smoky Slate, Mango Melody, Soft Suede and Crumb Cake.  Then I matted those pieces onto 2 5/8 x 2 5/8 squares of cardstock that coordinated with the color Stampin’ Blends that I used.  Well, except for the Mango Melody, I didn’t like the way that paired with the stamped image so I switched it out to Daffodil Delight. 

                         

 

Next, I stamped the grass using Memento Black, but I stamped off twice.  I also only stamped the top half of the image on the bottom of my note cards.  I wanted to be sure to leave enough room for the sentiment to be under the Rooster image.  I also stamped one image of the grass on the inside of the note card and also on the outside of the envelope, to tie everything together.  Then I tied 2 pieces of Black Bakers Twine around the bundle.  You can see all the products I used at the bottom of this post.

It took no time at all to make this  little set of note cards.  I’m thinking of giving it away as a door prize at my Open House on 1/5.  I have a fair amount of new potential customers and if they sign up to receive my newsletter I will give them a door prize ticket.  Keeping my fingers crossed for getting a few new attendees for my monthly classes!

One quick REMINDER!  You only have until January 2nd to order from the 2018 Holiday Catalog!  If there are any items that you’ve been waiting to order, now is the time to do it winkTo see the retiring items, click HERE!

I hope you enjoyed this project and that you take advantage of all the great Sale-a-Bration products that will be available starting on 1/3!  Thanks for checking out this month’s blog, and please continue on to see what the rest of the talented team has for you to see!  Jo Anne Hewins is next smiley

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