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February 2010

Are YOU a Stampin' Addict?

Have you ever been up late at night working on a card design and just couldn't figure out how to make it work?  You need inspiration so you go to your computer and then what?  Where do you go?  Who can you contact in the middle of the night?

I have the answer for you:  Stampin' Addicts.  This web site is just chock full of great ideas and inspiration for just about any type of papercrafting (and even some stuff not made of paper).  Looking for a new idea for a Stampin' Up! stamp set that's been collecting dust?  You'll find it in the Gallery.  Want to try a new technique to take your papercrafting to the next level?  You'll find it in the Forums.  And that's just the beginning!

Stampin' Addicts is a fun, friendly, positive environment for papercrafters.  The focus is Stampin' Up! products, but you're sure to find inspiration for your papercrafting projects here.

This week, Stampin' Addicts is celebrating their First Birthday, so there's lots going on with Challenges, Blog Hops, and Contests.  Check it out! You may become a Stampin' Addict!


A Delightful Change in Plan

Hi there!  Thanks for stopping by to visit!

Saturday, I attended a meeting with my Stampin' Up! upline, Catherine Harwood.  She meets with her demonstrator downline once a month.  Catherine's meetings are a fun, interactive way for her to share information and ideas.  No Stampin' Up! gathering is ever complete without stamping, and Catherine always challenges her demonstrators with a new technique (or two).  Today's post includes one of those techniques:  a paper flower.  As soon as I made the flower, I knew that I would be making many more, I just didn't realize how soon that would happen!

Last night, while watching the Olympics, I decided to make a card for Gretchen Barron's current Inspiration in Action Weekend Sketch Challenge (IA120) using the Sweet Pea Designer Series Paper Pack and the coordinating Sweet Pea Stitched felt.  The plan was to create a flower arrangement of the felt pieces inside the scallop oval frame.  I thought to myself, "Quick card, lots of colors, no problem!"  The problem was that no matter how I arranged the flowers and leaves, I just couldn't be pleased with the results.  Then I remembered the flower I had made with Catherine and realized that I could use this technique to create the perfect focal point for my card!


The scallop shape was made with the Big Shot using the Oval Scallop Frame and two pieces of paper from the Sweet Pea Designer Series Paper Pack; one design for the center of the oval, and one for the frame.  I adhered these pieces, at an angle, to the third piece of paper from this very versatile paper pack, and trimmed the overhanging edges.  The Old Olive 5/8" satin ribbon was attached and then this element was attached to the Sahara Sand card base.  

The flower is made with two 1 1/8" x 12" strips of Sweet Pea Designer Series Paper Pack strips.  One 12" edge is punched with the Eyelet Border punch and then the strip is run through the Paper Crimper a couple of times to break down the paper fibers to make the paper easier to manipulate.  The end of the first paper strip is folded back (for a nice soft edge) and adhered to a 1 3/8" circle covered with Sticky Strip.  The paper strip is then pleated and placed, pleated and placed, following the contour of the circle.  It's a good idea to look at the back of the cardstock circle periodically to ensure that the same amount of paper extends beyond the cardstock circle so that flower remains uniform in size.  When you get to the beginning of the strip, you can move toward the center of the cardstock circle to create another layer or you can end the current layer by tearing off the remaining paper, folding the end under and placing it on the beginning, overlapped just slightly, with a Mini Glue Dot.  Create your next layer of "petals" and when you've gone around the circle, just tear off the remaining paper, fold the end under and secure the end with a Mini Glue Dot.  The felt flower in the center is secured with a Pop Up Glue Dot.

Place the leaves on the card front with Mini Glue Dots.  The paper flower sits above the leaves with Stampin' Dimensionals placed on the back of the 1 3/8" cardstock circle.  Rose Red cardstock was used for the Modern Label punch.  The Word Window punch was used to punch out the Mother's Day wishes stamped with Rose Red on Pretty in Pink cardstock.  These were placed on the card front with Stampin' Dimensionals.  The tiny felt flower was attached to the label with a Mini Glue Dot.


The Chocolate Chip/White polka dot paper was attached to the back flap of the envelope with SNAIL and the edges trimmed.  The paper strips left after the Eyelet Border was punched for the paper flower were used to add a colorful trim the envelope flap.

This card took a little longer to make than I had originally planned, but I think the end result was more than worth it!  I think it turned out pretty darn cute!

Edited to add:  This card was included in the "Late Nite Stampers Blog Find of the Day" for February 23, 2010.  Thanks, Kelly, for the recognition!


Stamps:  Teeny Tiny Wishes; Inks:  Rose Red; Cardstock:  Pretty in Pink, Rose Red, Sahara Sand; Designer Series Paper:  Sweet Pea Designer Series Paper Pack; Embellishments:  Old Olive 5/8" satin ribbon, Sweet Pea Stitched Felt; Adhesives:  SNAIL, Stampin' Dimensionals, Sticky Strip, Mini Glue Dot, Pop Up Glue Dot; Tools:  Paper Cutter/Scorer, Paper Snips, Bone Folder, Modern Label punch, Word Window punch, 1 3/8" circle punch, Eyelet Border punch, Big Shot w/Standard Cutting Pads, Scallop Oval Frame die; Other:  Medium Whisper White Envelope

You're Invited to a Sale-A-Bration!

Hi there!  Thanks for stopping by to visit.  I hope you had a wonderful Valentine's Day weekend!

Stampin' Up!'s biggest promotion of the year is underway and there are only a few weeks left to take advantage of the opportunity to earn FREE stuff!  During Sale-A-Bration you have the chance to receive one Sale-A-Bration item for every $50 you spend in Stampin' Up! merchandise.  OR you can host a fun Stampin' Up! workshop, invite a bunch of your friends for some hand's-on creativity, have a great time, and earn a Sale-A-Bration item when your workshop merchandise sales reach $300.  AND this year, the selection is the best ever!  You can choose from stamp sets, a Designer Series Paper pack, a brand new border punch, or choose from a list of more than 70 stamp sets from the Idea Book and Catalog. 


I would like to invite you to take advantage of this great opportunity.  If you live in the Central Florida area, please contact me to schedule your workshop.  If you aren't able to host a workshop, your on-line order will qualify for FREE stuff for every $50 you spend in Stampin' Up! merchandise.  You can access the Stampin' Up! on-line store by clicking on the "Order Stampin' Up! Online" button on the upper left sidebar, then click on the Shop Now hotlink near the lower right area of my Demonstrator Website page.

The workshop invitation shown above was made using the Inspiration in Action Weekend Sketch Challenge (IA119) sketch and incorporates one of the FREE Sale-A-Bration items, the Scallop Trim Border punch.  The paper strips from the Tea Party Designer Series Paper pack are adhered to a piece of Almost Amethyst cardstock; the right edge punched with the Scallop Trim Border punch.  A piece of Pretty in Pink 5/8" satin ribbon is tied around this element and the element is attached to the So Saffron card base.  The card focal point is matted to Pretty in Pink and Certainly Celery cardstock.  The butterflies are stamped with Almost Amethyst and Pretty in Pink and the sentiment is stamped with Certainly Celery.  The Almost Amethyst butterfly is punched out with the Butterfly punch, folded in half, and attached to the Pretty in Pink cardstock mat with a Mini Glue Dot. 


The Whisper White envelope is stamped with butterfly images in So Saffron, Almost Amethyst, and Pretty in Pink.  The sentiment is stamped with Certainly Celery. 

I hope you'll accept my invitation to join in the Sale-A-Bration!


Stamps:  Flight of the Butterfly, Sincere Salutations; Inks:  Almost Amethyst, Certainly Celery, Pretty in Pink, So Saffron; Cardstock:  Almost Amethyst, Certainly Celery, Pretty in Pink, So Saffron, Whisper White; Designer Series Paper:  Tea Party; Embellishments:  Pretty in Pink 5/8" satin ribbon; Adhesives:  SNAIL, Mini Glue Dot; Tools:  Paper Cutter/Scorer, Paper Snips, Bone Folder, Butterfly punch, Scallop Trim Border punch; Other:  Medium Whisper White Envelope

It's ALL About the Love

Happy Valentine's Day!

A quick post to show you the cards I made for my husband and parents for Valentine's Day.  These cards are also my submittal for the Pals Paper Arts Simple Sketch Challenge (PPA29).  Here's the card I made for my husband.


The only stamping on this card is on the inside of the card (I'll spare you the mushy stuff I wrote in there) and on the envelope.


The card I made for my parents is amazingly similar to the card I made for my husband, but in recognition of their 55 years of marriage, I changed the front panel to better reflect their years of committment to each other.


"It's ALL about the Love"...that's really the bottom line.  

Have a great day honoring all those in your life that you love!  Thanks for stopping by to visit!


Stamps:  Tiny Tags; Inks:  Crushed Curry; Cardstock:  Crushed Curry, Melon Mambo Textured, Rich Razzleberry Textured, Whisper White; Designer Series Paper:  Raspberry Lemonade; Embellishments:  Melon Mambo 1/2" dotted grosgrain ribbon; Adhesives:  SNAIL, Mini Glue Dot, Stampin' Dimensionals; Tools:  Paper Cutter/Scorer, Paper Snips, Bone Folder, Full Heart punch, Pinking Hearts Border punch, Big Shot w/Standard Cutting Plates and Multi-Purpose Platform, Scalloped Heart of Hearts Embosslit, Timeless Type Alphabet Junior Sizzlits; Other:  Medium Whisper White Envelope

Riding the Roller Coaster

Hi there!  I hope all is well in your world.  Things have been a bit of a roller coaster for me in the last couple of weeks with my "day job," family, and pets.  It looks like things may be calming down now.  We'll see for how long.

For those of you who don't know, my "day job" is at the Kennedy Space Center.  I work in an engineering area that supports the Space Shuttle Program.  The recent announcement of the changes to NASA, as proposed in the President's budget submittal, is distressing to those of us who were looking forward to the next human space adventure:  Constellation.  Facing the end of the Space Shuttle Program was tough; however, looking forward to the "next step" in human space exploration was exciting to contemplate.  At the same time, we were moving forward in support of the recent launch of STS-130 with Space Shuttle Endeavour.

(NASA/Sandra Joseph and Kevin O'Connell)

Standing in front of the Launch Control Center and watching the night sky turn to day as the Space Shuttle rose from the launch pad was awe-inspiring.  Night launch or day launch, I am always thrilled and amazed with every lift-off.  I think of all the thousands of people who contributed to the thousands of processes and procedures that must occur successfully each and every time in order to make this event happen.  It's the same feeling each time the Space Shuttle lands, whether it's here at the Kennedy Space Center or at an alternate landing site.

I also think about all the technological advances that have occurred since the beginning of human space flight.  It's surprising how many of these new technologies have translated into commodities that we now take for granted in every aspect of our daily lives.  Where will these advances come from if human space flight is no longer available?  I shudder to think that after all these years that we, as a nation, would be content to take a back seat to any other nation in microgravity research and development.

Shortly before all of this occurred, we were blessed to welcome a new addition to our family, our grandson Randall Charles.  Isn't he gorgeous??!!  He was slightly jaundiced at birth, but he's doing great now.  Thankfully, there was plenty of Florida sunshine available to treat it.  We traveled to South Florida to meet our new grandson just a few days after his birth.


This week I finished up a card for a color swap with a number of Stampin' Up! demonstrators.  Our challenge was to create a card using only one color from the Bold Brights color family, Basic Black, and one other neutral color (either Whisper White or Very Vanilla).  When I entered my name to participate in the swap I thought this would be a no-brainer; boy was I wrong!  I really struggled deciding which color to choose and then selecting a stamp set that I could use to showcase the color.  In the end, I decided on Eastern Blooms and Tempting Turquoise.


We were also directed to use at least three layers and an embellishment.  Once I picked the color and the stamp set, everything else seemed to fall into place.  The embellishments for this card are Tempting Turquoise 1/4" grosgrain ribbon, a clear/white button from Button Latte, and small and medium Clear Rhinestone brads.  Two single flower stamps are inked once and stamped three times randomly across the Whisper White cardstock panel on the upper card front.  One of the flowers on the right hand side of the panel was chosen and a hole was pierced through the center of the flower to accommodate the medium Clear Rhinestone brad.  You can see that the small Clear Rhinestone brad is inserted into the button holes of the button and then through the center of the flower before the brad legs are set into place on the back of the flower.  The flower petals were rolled under with the help of a bone folder.  The flower is attached to the Whisper White panel with a Pop-Up Glue Dot so that the petals of the flower don't get flattened.  The Designer Series Paper used for the lower part of the card front comes from the Pink Flamingo Designer Series Paper pack.  I liked how the graduated flowers tied in with the button.

The Medium Whisper White envelope was decorated in a manner similar to the Whisper White panel on the card front.  The large flower was stamped first, then the smaller flowers were inked once and stamped three times around the large flower.


I mentioned pets in the beginning of this message as being passengers on my roller coaster ride.  We brought a Shih Tzu puppy into our home in mid-December and we've been working with him and our 5-year old Golden Retriever.  Our Golden Retriever, Maxwell, has finally accepted that this new addition will be staying and has begun to play and romp with the Shih Tzu puppy, Zorro.  Zorro is beginning to understand the routine now and I think he is finally on his way to mastering the art of using the yard instead of the carpet.  We are enjoying watching the two of them play together as they romp around the yard and play tug-o-war with their toys in the house.

Life is that way, isn't it?  Mixing up the fun with the not-so-fun so that it becomes a pattern of contentment.  On this Valentine's weekend, I think about all the things in my life that I love and I feel overwhelmed with the blessings in my life.  My husband, my children and their spouses, grandchildren, parents, brothers and sisters (and their spouses, children and grandchildren), friends and even pets; they enrich my life and bring me joy.  I am so very thankful for all of you.

In the same vein, I am grateful to you, my blog readers, for taking the time to stop by to visit with me.  Your comments and encouragement are important to me and I appreciate your support.


Stamps:  Eastern Blooms, Teeny Tiny Wishes; Inks:  Tempting Turquoise; Cardstock:  Basic Black, Tempting Turquoise, Whisper White; Embellishments:  Tempting Turquoise 1/4" grosgrain ribbon, Small and Medium Clear Rhinestone brads, Button Latte; Adhesives:  SNAIL, Mini Glue Dot, Pop-Up Glue Dot, Stampin' Dimensionals; Tools:  Paper Cutter/Scorer, Paper Snips, Bone Folder, Modern Label punch, Word Window punch, Paper Piercing tool, Mat Pack, Sponge; Other:  Medium Whisper White Envelope