Aug 31, 2017

Let's toast to a new Holiday Catalog!

Oh - summer is over.  This time of year is always a little sad...but then I am also a little glad.  Because (at least in Indiana) - the weather.  Oh, it's glorious.  It may be cool today - but I will be by the pool for sure again this week.  The days will be sunny, the leaves will be so pretty, the fires, the apples.  The Holidays.  The costumes.  The football.  The pies.  The Turkey.  The tree.  The snow (at least in December).  I love this time of year.  I am just sad to see summer go.

And with all these Holidays.  There is so much stamping that can go with it.  Today we kick off the Holiday Mini.  For me - I am doing TEN days of freebies.  It will happen in 10 different ways.  But you have to catch it on THE day - or you will miss it.  This is the hub though - so if you land here, you should be good - I may send you off someplace else to find it.  But consider this your map!

And for the toast - love this set - love the saying - take a second to watch the video and then meet me on the other side

I used just two colors on the card - Sahara Sand and Cherry Cobbler.  Mixed with this were some metallics - the Foil Acetate (flipped to the gold side) mixed with the fabulous new champagne foil paper and the Year of Cheer specialty washi tape.  

You can see I added a touch of Presecco to my champagne paper by running it through the Big Shot and giving it some bubbly.  The acetate and the cherry cobbler are also bubbly.  I stamped the wine bottle on shimmery white so when it is painted with the Wink of Stella the shine factor is off the charts.

The banners were attached to the card with adhesive so the washi tape is only an illusion that is holding the pieces together.  You will see today's FREEBIE on the ends of the washi!!!

Purchase $75 via my webstore using hostess code 2MVRWQRT   and I will send you the new Black Rhinestone Jewels FREE! ($5 value).  If you are able to pick your freebie up from my - then you just need to order $65 to claim your freebie!  Orders must be emailed to me or placed using the hostess code above by midnight Sept 1 to qualify for the free Rhinestones.

And may your glass always be half full....and refilled!

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Ten Days. Of Free.

This year I am kicking off the release of the Stampin' Up! Holiday catalog with 10 days of freebies.  You won't want to miss a day - when the day is gone - so is that day's freebie.  It might be in an email - in my blog  - on my Facebook - in a video - maybe even hidden in my Pinterest!  Most will be a free with purchase  BUT some..... will just be free!

If you don't have a copy and would like one, please let me know and I will get one in the mail to you!  Copies will mail out next Tuesday, so I need your address by then.

I will give you a hint that on Sept 1 - to find your freebie - you will need to head to my Facebook page.  If you don't already follow, do!  Every share, like, comment and especially getting some fellow friends to follow is appreciated....and will be noticed for possible freebies!

Aug 27, 2017

Quick Tip: Using Foil Papers with the Thinlits

I hear and read a lot of stampers who express frustration when working with the metallic foil papers and Big Shot framelits and thinlits.  Here is a short and simple video to help you take care of the problem!

The problem arises from both the bumps that allow the papers to release from the dies.  The foil paper has a tendency to have them impressed into your image.  

All you need to do is run the piece BACK through the plates.  You will need a plate that is fairly new - if you use an older plate with lots of cuts - then you will simply swap the dots with all the cut marks.  

Lay your cut out piece between the 2 plates with a piece of cardstock laying on top of the top play.
Roll the sandwich through.  Because all Big Shots are a little different - you might need to adjust the cardstock - use typing paper or two sheets of cardstock, whatver works best for you.

Aug 26, 2017

The Hottest Set from the Holiday Mini?! Painted Harvest

The 2017 Holiday Mini from Stampin' Up! does not go live until September 1.  Which means that at this point only demonstrators have their hands on the products in it.  So a quick search of Pinterest will tell you that the most popular stamp set appears to be Painted Harvest.

So - if you your shopping list from the catalog is a mile long - might I suggest starting with the set that will be the simplest to come up with a zillion and one ideas for!  Seriously, it is so beautiful - you just start stamping and it fills your page with watercolored like images.  It is part of a suite that includes a punch - so if you don't own a Big Shot - it will work for you!

My take goes with a more traditional sunflower color scheme as I included the yellow - last night while stamping with some of my team she did hers in blue. It is gorgeous and next week I will show you what she designed.

I did start mine on suede paper, but while pretty I felt it needed something more.  I ran it through the wood folder...and then remembered the fabulous wood designer paper.  THAT is really pretty and gave it the more rustic look I was going for.

Make sure to come back to my site in early September.  I will have all of the supply lists for the videos posted - along with all the freebies for each project!

Aug 25, 2017

Gourd Goodness and the Return of the Glossy Cardstock!

Today's Short and Simple video should get you in the mood for Autumn!  The weather here in Indiana has been decidedly cooler this week - highs in the upper 70's - so perfection.  Could 'almost' make you want to pull out the socks in the evening.  It's the September game we play.  Will we?  Won't we?  It's like the socks make you admit the summer is over.

If you are here before Sept 1..or a day or two will need to check back, this is another sneak peak to a Holiday catalog stamp set.  Some several of the products are not yet available.  I will add the shopping list to the bottom of the post then. You WILL want to check back - because the videos that have had Holiday catalog products will kick off that catalog with some FREE with purchase items!!!
This card ended up NO WHERE close to where it started.  I took some pictures of the process and will do a post on that someday soon.  There are two pumpkins in the stamp set.  The card was vanilla and sand. No leaves, no color.  Then it morphed to include color.  When I went to add ribbon I really wanted to use this lush Powder I redid the card (about the 6th time) taking all the colors down one to include the pink as the lightest.  Sometimes magic happens.  Sometimes it's just a lot of work, lol.

The Glossy cardstock has made a return.  Oh, the glossy.  That was fancy stuff back in 1995 when I signed up with Stampin' Up!  I remember the training video - probably had to tear Miss Ris away from the Disney in the VCR long enough to watch Shelly and LaVonne stamp that apple in a RAINBOW pad on glossy cardstock.  It was so upscale!

Then it went away.  I don't remember for how long.  But, it's been a minute.  I know Glossy never met these colors - Powder Pink, Sahara Sand, Peach....You know - it's a whole new Century!

I think I should be glad it is Friday.  The week started with some dreaming/planning the Greek Incentive vacation with friends while eating, stamping and trying not to blind ourselves watching the eclipse.  I have managed to get a lot done - much of it technology wise - which is always a challenge.  Tonight will finish the week up with same friends - stamping again.  I am a bit nervous.  Sometimes when I stamp "in public" - it's a scary thing!

Check back in early September for the shopping list and the tips on the how to's for this card!  You won't want to miss the freebie on the card either....I will post a reminder on my Facebook when the Freebie goes live, so make sure to follow me there!

Aug 23, 2017

My Stamp Storage Unit

I have had lots of requests to show my storage unit and other ideas.  Unfortunately that requires a couple of things...well...align, lol.  One - I have to have most of my things not out in my class buckets.  At any given time I have buckets sitting around my office with upcoming projects for classes or past projects that I am still waiting to film.  This week - I finally got most of the buckets up - while at the same time my office itself was in presentable condition.  (is it me or do most of us creative types work best in a mess?!)

This is an old TV unit that was my mom's.  She purchased it when TVs were just getting really BIG and still really deep.  Just a year or two later the backsides literally came off the tv's.  When she moved she no longer needed to hide her tv while not in use and gave us the unit to use for storage.  My husband and brother moved it up to my office where it held an odd assortment of stuff for several years.  When the time came for me to renovate the room - the piece really had to go.  The amount of space it takes up in the room for the junk it was holding was not worth the trade off.  Fortunately my husband remembered how hard it had been to get it UP the stairs and said it was NOT coming back down.  In fact they had cut it in HALF to get it up and he had re-glued it once it was in place.  So, I turned to Pinterest and he started designing something that would be much more efficient in storage.
 He built the two boxes that swing out.  You can see when they are closed they hold my ribbons, washi tapes, powders, glitters, embellishments, ink spots, embossing guns, etc.  There is actually quite a bit of spare room still in the front shelves.  Those swing open and there you see my favorite parts.  The bottom of the swing outs hold all of the ink pads, refills and markers in each of our colors. There is space for 3 years of rotating In Colors and with the Neutrals I have kept a few of my favorite retired In Colors.  I don't keep a lot of retired items.  The only real exception to that is ribbon (which I then use liberally to wrap packages) and the Alphabets from the Big Shot.
Above the Inks are punches, platforms, cutting pads, folders, punches, glues, daubers - again quite a lot of spare space.  I find as a catalog year goes on the cabinet fills up and when the retired list comes out I do a 'purge'.  You can see on the backside of the pull out boxes that they are covered in magnet sheets as well.  When the Holiday catalog and Christmas season are finished - I will move all of the dies that are not being used to the back which will open up room for all of the fun new things that will be in the Occasions catalog.

When I left my job in June I knew I was going to need a good chair.  I stalked all of the Home Goods - stopping in every one every time I passed one.  It had to be comfortable AND match my white farmhouse decor' - the biggest thing was that it was gold....not silver.  Eventually I found the perfect one.  However, if you look closely at the photos - you will see there are two different chairs.  My perfect gold leopard skinish chair wasn't perfect enough for my husband.  So the search continued.  Now when he is in using the computer he swaps over for his grey and gold Hilfiger chair.  Home Goods for the win.  My work table has an adorable rolling chair that matches mine. I don't like my feet to dangle (short people problems), so I got a stool to use to rest them on.  Unfortunately my work partner thinks I got it for her throne, so I rarely get to use it.

 I will get work table pictures soon!
 I used Washi tape to write the name and the number of pieces in each of the die sets.  Then when I put them up I can see if they are all there.  The sheets of magnet are from Amazon - much cheaper than buying them in the store.  They are glued to the inside panel of the unit and to the ends of the swinging boxes.

 The original inside (where the TV was to live) he built a unit that would hold all of the paper.  The top slides in all of the colors, the neutrals and holds plenty of space for the In Colors - watercolor, shimmer, glossy, vellum, etc.  Anything that is  8 1/2 x 11.  Some spaces I use for the assorted packs (usually because I am too lazy to divide them up).  One of the unintended advantages of this storage system was being able to see at a glance if I am low on a color.  I also realize there are some colors that I have not used in the entire time I have had them in here (looking at you Tempting Turquoise...but it's not the only one!)

 In the space under that are all of my 12 x 12 and scrapbook page protectors.  The magazine holders are a work in progress.  They are now reinforced, but they need to be covered - because they look....bad.  I need my work area to be pretty.  And pretty they are not.  I looked for a while hoping to find something better - but, really, these work well so once they are stronger they will be good.
 In next to it are some sliding drawer units from The Container Store.  These hold all of the scraps.  Not little scraps - I am pretty ruthless to how big a piece must be to be kept.  If the drawer is full then even more so.  I can only fit 6 drawers in the space - so I opted to divide them up by like colors, not SU color families (ie, reds/pinks, blues/purples, yellow/oranges).  I have an expandable file folder (also from The Container Store) that holds the scrap pieces of White/Vanilla pieces.

 The boxes above the paper...those have the die cut packaging, watercolor CRAYONS, crop-a-dile, glue guns, jewelry making supplies, etc.  I would love to swap over to all kraft colored boxes.  But you know when you are in the middle of a major renovation everything costs money.  Then you just want to be done.  Once you are 'done' it takes a lot to build back up to to phase two, lol.  Once I get the kraft boxes it will be a great time for a second purge!

 The light inside the unit was a great addition - especially if I need to work at night preparing for an event.

As you can see the unit holds a ton of my stuff.  My stamps are kept in built in shelves.  I have my clear blocks, scissors, and adhesives on my work table.  Under the unit are unfinished paper pumpkin and other kits.  If I could get a handle on all of the scrapbooking memorabilia I have in the room - that would be an accomplishment.

The room may look a little barren - but it is only because I chose to keep this side sparse since the unit is so large.  The wall opposite is a gallery wall with brick - so it has a lot going on over there!  Hope you enjoyed the tour - and hope it gave you some ideas.  Keep your eyes open on Craigslist or at the Goodwill.  I see similar units for sale quite often!

At Home With You - featuring Embossing Paste

Place a $75 (product) or more order via my website by August 25th - and I will send you a FREE jar of  Embossing Paste!

Today's Technique video features the new product - Embossing Paste.  I am sure there are many ways to use it - on this card I will show you two.

A few tips as you work with it.
It dries QUICKLY.  Which is great - for your finished card.  Not so much for leaving your open jar sitting there or for mixing up more than you may need to use for the project you are working on at that sitting.  So - don't take out anymore than you think you need.  You can see the small dallop that I use in the video was plenty for both my 'bricks' and the tree.

I started with ONE drop of the crumb cake refill first.  (and from what I have seen using it, the colors will not look true to SU! colors until the paste has had time to dry, especially true in the case of crumb cake - it looks weird until dry!).  Then with what is left of the lighter color you can add just a smidgen of your darker color.  For the topiary I added Tranquil Tide.  The two cards were made at different times, you will never get quite the same shade again!

The Topiary actually is a Christmas one if you would just color it in.  But because I used the Palette tools to cover it like frosting, they disappear and my tree is fine for summer!  I used the masks for the bricks.  I like the look of not covering the entire card, so I intentionally left parts of the corners incomplete.
It was touch dry by the time I was done with the card in the video, but not quite dry enough to firmly adhere the parts together.  Just a note if you want to do the same card at home - filming required me to run the pieces through the big shot before  - it would be easier for you to color them before doing that!  And obviously wait for everything to dry thoroughly before sticking all of it together.  When you are done with your silicone sheet, tools and mask quickly run some water over them or use a wet wipe to get them clean.  If you wait even 5 minutes and the paste dries....clean up will take longer than it took you to make the card!  Make sure to keep the cover and seal it back over the jar.  I have been using this same jar for over 6 weeks and the paste is holding up fine.  I have made several cards and we have used it at camp.  It is the kind of thing that is hard to gauge how much there is - but it will go a long way!

Finally - I am often asked how my watercolor looks so strong with the pencils.  No, it's not photoshop!  I just press pretty hard with my pencils!  Way harder than I have seen anyone else press. I rarely use one color.  My door is mixed with at least 3 shades.  I use one shade to line along the left sides of all the panels, maybe 1/4 way in and then add a line or 2 of coordinating colors.  The frame is brown and black.  When I blend the color with the aquapainter I pull it toward the empty space and if it doesn't all fill in, that's ok, I leave it.  What if a pencil breaks for pushing so hard?  Eh...  They are cheap.  Seriously - a pack of pencils is just a couple of dollars more than a pack of Designer Series Papers.  Even if I break the tips on occasion and they need sharpened more often - I just consider them a consumable.  Try it.  I think you will be pleased with a really strong watercolor look.  It also opens up some additional colors.  If I wanted to do some flowers with a strong pressed yellow and a strip of orange - it would be totally different than my door!

Hope you enjoyed this as much as I enjoyed making it!  Please share my site with your friends.  And if you need a Demonstrator - I would love to service you.  I have a great Loyalty Reward Program and starting in late fall I will be starting a VIP Facebook program for customers!  Thanks for watching!

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