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March 2011

February 2011

Sale-A-Bration! Only a Few Weeks Left!

Hi there!  Before I get started on Sale-A-Bration, here's a stunning photo for you--yesterday afternoon's launch of Space Shuttle Discovery; beginning her final voyage into space.  A very bittersweet moment, indeed.  It's always exciting to experience a Space Shuttle launch, but knowing that this is just one more step toward the end of a very successful era of human space flight is very distressing.  If you have never seen a Space Shuttle launch in person, you only have two more chances:  Space Shuttle Endeavour in mid-April (STS-134) and Space Shuttle Atlantis in late June (STS-135).  For more information on launch schedules check out www.nasa.gov.

STS-133_022411
(Click on photo to see larger image) (Image Credit:  NASA)

I realized that I haven't mentioned Sale-A-Bration on my blog and that's not very smart!  Sale-A-Bration is a huge Stampin' Up! promotion and a great chance to take advantage of some terrific opportunities.  There are three ways you can take advantage:

1.  As a Customer at a Stampin' Up! workshop, for every $50 in merchandise purchased (before shipping & handling and tax), select one FREE item from 8 specific Sale-A-Bration products OR from more than 80 specially identified products from the 2010-2011 Idea Book & Catalog

2.  As a Stampin' Up! workshop Hostess, for every $300 in workshop merchandise purchases (before shipping & handling and tax) select one FREE item from 8 specific Sale-A-Bration products OR from more than 80 specially identified products from the 2010-2011 Idea Book & Catalog.  This is in ADDITION to all the great Hostess benefits you'll already receive!

3.  Sign Up to become a Stampin' Up! demonstrator during Sale-A-Bration and take advantage of a 15% discount on the Starter Kit AND receive a special gift bundle from Stampin' Up! worth up to $50!

Here's a quick and easy card I designed for Terry's Sale-A-Bration workshop last weekend.  It features THREE of the special Sale-A-Bration products:  the So Happy For You stamp set, the Ice Cream Parlor Ribbon and Button pack, and the Ice Cream Parlor Designer Series Paper and Quick Accents pack.

So_Happy_Stitches
(click on card to see larger image)

To make this card, roll the In Stitches Stampin' Around Jumbo Wheel over the Daffodil Delight card front at an angle using Daffodil Delight ink.  Wrap a piece of Ice Cream Parlor 1/4" grosgrain ribbon around a Pacific Point tag (die cut using the Big Shot and the Two Tags Bigz die with 1/2" cut from the end of the tag) and tie in a knot on the front.  Adhere the tag to the card front with the straight end flush with the fold.  Punch a 1 3/4" scallop circle from Ice Cream Parlor Designer Series Paper and adhere, centered, over the scallop end of the die cut.  Punch a 1" circle from another piece of Ice Cream Parlor Designer Series Paper and adhere, centered, to the center of the 1 3/4" scallop circle.  Thread a piece of Linen Thread through the button holes of an Ice Cream Parlor button and tie in a knot.  Adhere to the center of the 1" circle with a Mini Glue Dot.  Stamp "so happy for you" using Tangerine Tango ink near the lower left corner of the card front.

So_Happy_Stitches_Inside
(click on card to see larger image)

The inside sentiment area of the Daffodil Delight card is lined with a piece of Whisper White cardstock.  A 1/2" strip of Ice Cream Parlor Designer Series Paper was adhered across the top of the Whisper White cardstock.

So_Happy_Stitches_Envelope
(click on envelope to see larger image)

The In Stitches Stampin' Around Jumbo Wheel was inked with Daffodil Delight ink and rolled over the envelope flap of a Medium Whisper White envelope.

Sale-A-Bration runs through the end of March.  I'd love to meet with you and your friends, at your home or mine, during a Stampin' Up! workshop.  And if you've considered signing up to become a Stampin' Up! demonstrator, the time is right to take advantage of the great benefits for new demonstrators during Sale-A-Bration.  Just contact me for more information!

Robertssiggy

Stamps:  So Happy For You, In Stitches Stampin' Around Jumbo Wheel; Inks:  Daffodil Delight, Tangerine Tango; Cardstock:  Daffodil Delight, Pacific Point, Whisper White; Designer Series Paper:  Ice Cream Parlor; Embellishments:  Ice Cream Parlor 1/4" grosgrain ribbon, Ice Cream Parlor button, Linen Thread; Adhesives:  SNAIL, Mini Glue Dot; Tools:  Paper Cutter/Scorer, Paper Snips, Bone Folder, 1 3/4" scallop circle punch, 1" circle punch, Stampin' Around Jumbo Wheel handle, Big Shot w/Standard Cutting Plates, Two Tags Bigz die; Other:  Medium Whisper White Envelope


What's Black and White and Red...

Hello!  Thanks so much for taking the time to visit!

It's a busy time for me right now at my "day job."  We're back on track toward launch of STS-133, Space Shuttle Discovery, on February 24th.  The weather looks terrific for tanking and launch; so hopefully, we'll have a successful launch tomorrow afternoon around 4:50 p.m. (Eastern).

I wanted to share with you the final Thank You card I made for my Mom.  This one features a paper folding technique that was demonstrated to the 3-2-1 Stamp Team last Fall by the extremely talented Stampin' Up! demonstrator, Beth Daniels.  Since then, I've been looking for an opportunity to use this technique, and felt that this card design was a perfect showcase for it!

Cute_BY_The_Inch_Thank_You
(click on card to see larger image)

This paper folding technique uses a 4" square of Real Red patterned paper from the Brights Patterns Designer Series Paper Stack.  I'm really glad that Stampin' Up! went to these paper stacks.  It used to be that if you wanted a specific color patterned paper, you had to buy a pack of 12 double-sided sheets of that single color for $9.95.  Unless you were making a whole lot of stuff using that single color, you found that this paper was just lying around gathering dust.  With the Patterns Designer Series Paper Stacks, you get patterned paper for every color in each of the color families:  Brights, Subtles, Regals, Neutrals, and In Color at the really great price of $19.95!  (And in this paper stack you get 40 double-sided sheets of Designer Series Paper!)

To fold the paper, just fold one corner to its opposite corner and crease the fold with the bone folder.  Open the paper and then pick a corner with no crease and fold it to its opposite corner and crease with the bone folder.  Open the paper and then fold each corner to the center where the two creases cross and crease each of these folds with the bone folder.  Finally, pull up each corner at the center point and fold each one back to its fold.  Crease each new fold with bone folder.  It's as simple as that!

For this card, the folded paper was matted to a piece of Basic Black cardstock and then placed near the upper center of a piece of Whisper White cardstock with the bottom edge punched with the Eyelet Border punch.  The Whisper White cardstock was adhered to the Basic Black card base.  The medallion image from the Cute By The Inch stamp set was stamped with Whisper White Craft ink on Basic Black cardstock, covered with Clear Stampin' Emboss powder, and heat embossed.  The image was punched with the 1 1/4" square punch and placed at the center opening of the folded paper with a couple of Stampin' Dimensionals.  Below the matted, folded paper a simple "thank you" sentiment (Teeny Tiny Wishes) was stamped on a scrap of Whisper White cardstock using Real Red ink.  The sentiment was punched with the Word Window punch and placed on a scrap of Basic Black cardstock punched with the Modern Label punch.  The sentiment was adhered to the Whisper White cardstock with Stampin' Dimensionals.

Cute_By_the_Inch_Thank_You_Inside
(click on card to see larger image)

The inside sentiment area of the Basic Black card was lined with a piece of Whisper White cardstock.  The medallion image was stamped in the upper left corner using Basic Black ink and in the lower right corner using Real Red ink.

Cute_By_The_Inch_Thank_You_Envelope
(click on envelope to see larger image)

The medallion image was stamped again on the lower left front corner of the Medium Whisper White envelope using Basic Black and Real Red inks.

I think after making all these Thank You cards for Mom, I'm probably over using a combination of Red and Black for a while.  I really like the eye appeal of this color combo, though, and need to remember to use it every once in a while to shake things up a bit, color wise.

Robertssiggy

Stamps:  Cute By The Inch, Teeny Tiny Wishes; Inks:  Basic Black, Real Red, Whisper White Craft; Cardstock:  Basic Black, Whisper White; Designer Series Paper:  Brights Patterns Designer Series Paper Stack; Adhesives:  SNAIL, Stampin' Dimensionals; Tools:  Paper Cutter/Scorer, Paper Snips, Bone Folder, Modern Label punch, Word Window punch, 1 1/4" square punch, Eyelet Border punch, Clear Stampin' Emboss powder, Heat Tool; Other:  Medium Whisper White Envelope


Feelin' Blue About Bees

Hi there!  Thanks for stopping by to visit!

Today's post continues presentation of the cards that I made for my Mom to thank some very wonderful people for the gifts and tributes she received for my father.  After the last two cards with the Love Letters Designer Series Paper, I decided to change things up a bit and take another look at the Botanical Gazette Designer Series Paper and the Nature Walk stamp set.  I really liked the paper with the Not Quite Navy bees and the So Saffron dots, so I decided to incorporate this paper into a card design.

Nature_Walk_Thank_You
(click on card to see larger image)

The card base is Marina Mist; the edges of the card front sponged with Marina Mist ink.  Across the front of the card, I placed a layer of Not Quite Navy cardstock, the bottom edge punched with the Scallop Border punch to add a little interest and the edges sponged with Not Quite Navy ink.  On top of this layer, I placed a strip of the bee paper (the edges sponged with So Saffron ink) matted with a piece of So Saffron cardstock (the edges sponged with So Saffron ink, too).  I wrapped a piece of Old Olive 3/8" Taffeta ribbon around these pieces and knotted it on the front near the middle before adhering the pieces to the Not Quite Navy cardstock.

The focal point for this card contains the flower/stem image inked with Old Olive and So Saffron Stampin' Write Markers and stamped on Whisper White cardstock.  A bee image was stamped near the flower/stem image using Not Quite Navy ink.  The edges of the Whisper White cardstock were sponged with Not Quite Navy ink and place, centered, on a piece of Not Quite Navy cardstock (the edges sponged with Not Quite Navy ink).  These pieces were matted with a piece of So Saffron cardstock; the edges sponged with So Saffron ink.  The focal point was adhered to the card front with Stampin' Dimensionals placed behind the upper left and right corners of the So Saffron mat and a piece of Sticky Strip along the bottom back edge of the So Saffron mat.

Nature_Walk_Thank_You_Inside
(click on card to see larger image)

The inside sentiment area of the card is lined with a piece of Whisper White cardstock; the edges sponged with Marina Mist ink.  A row of bees was then stamped along the left side using Not Quite Navy ink.  Not shown here, but present in the cards I made for my Mom, was the "thank you" sentiment in brackets (from the All Holidays stamp set) stamped with So Saffron ink directly underneath the top four bees.

Nature_Walk_Thank_You_Envelope
(click on envelope to see larger image)

The lower left front corner of the Medium Whisper White envelope was stamped with the flower/stem image inked with Old Olive and So Saffron Stampin' Write Markers.  The bee image was stamped near the flower/stem image using Not Quite Navy ink.  Not shown here, but present on the envelopes I stamped for my Mom, was the "thank you" sentiment in brackets (from the All Holidays stamp set) stamped with So Saffron ink directly underneath the bee near the base of the flower stem.

You'll notice that the Thank You cards I made don't feature any bulky items or fancy ribbon treatments.  This was done on purpose to ensure that each card would require only one First Class postage stamp.  The easiest way for me to gauge this is to place the card in the envelope and slide it in between the tracks of my Paper Cutter/Scorer.  If there's no resistance, then the card will need only one postage stamp.  However, if you have a hard object on the card (like a Rhinestone or Pearl or button or large knot on a bow), you'll still need to add the extra 20 cents postage, even if the card will slide easily between the tracks of the Paper Cutter/Scorer.  This is because of the way the mail is pushed through the automated mail sorter and postmark machines.  For these kinds of cards, I put the extra postage on the card and write "Please Hand Cancel!" under the postage stamps.  Otherwise, the card will likely be destroyed or seriously mangled in the machinery.  I look at it this way:  if I've invested the time to make the card, I'm going to make sure it gets to the recipient in good condition.  Quibbling over an extra 20 cents in postage seems rather silly for such a special greeting.

Robertssiggy

Stamps:  Nature Walk (All Holidays--optional); Inks:  Marina Mist, Not Quite Navy, So Saffron; Stampin' Write Markers:  Old Olive, So Saffron; Cardstock:  Marina Mist, Not Quite Navy, So Saffron, Whisper White; Designer Series Paper:  Botanical Gazette; Embellishments:  Old Olive 3/8" Taffeta ribbon; Adhesives:  SNAIL, Stampin' Dimensionals, Sticky Strip; Tools:  Paper Cutter/Scorer, Paper Snips, Bone Folder, Sponge, Scallop Border punch; Other:  Medium Whisper White Envelope


A Striking Color Combo

Hello!

Here's another one of the Thank You cards I made at the Hospice facility.  This is actually the first one that I designed.  It's a simple design that I've used many times when I want to make a quick card.  As with the previous card, I used the Love Letters Designer Series Paper to help keep the color decisions as simple as possible.  This time, I used the Clearly For You stamp set for the focal point and the Tiny Tags stamp set for the sentiment hanging from the ribbon knot.

Love_Letters_Clearly_For_You
(click on card to see larger image)

The Love Letters Designer Series Paper features only three colors:  Basic Black, Riding Hood Red, and Very Vanilla.  There's something very elegant about that color combination that makes the cards designed with this paper extra special.  For this card, I substituted the Riding Hood Red with Cherry Cobbler.  I think the deeper red of Cherry Cobbler is very striking against the Basic Black.

The card base is Basic Black.  Across the front of the card rests a strip of Very Vanilla cardstock; the bottom edge punched with the Scallop Trim Border punch and the edges of the cardstock sponged with Cherry Cobbler ink.  A strip of Love Letters Designer Series Paper in Basic Black and Very Vanilla is matted with Cherry Cobbler cardstock and placed, centered, on the Very Vanilla cardstock.  A piece of Very Vanilla 1/4" grosgrain ribbon was wrapped around the cardstock/Designer Series Paper and knotted on the right side.  A Mini Glue Dot was placed under the ribbon knot to ensure it stays in place.  The border piece was then adhered to the card front with SNAIL.

A tiny Thank You sentiment from the Tiny Tags stamp set was stamped with Cherry Cobbler ink on a scrap of Very Vanilla cardstock and punched out with the Jewelry Tag punch.  The edges of the tag were sponged with Cherry Cobbler ink.  A hole was pierced at the top of the tag and a piece of Linen Thread was looped through the hole and around the Very Vanilla ribbon knot and tied off.  A half piece of a Stampin' Dimensional attached to the back of the tag holds the tag in place on the card front.

The background for the focal point uses the floral and scroll background image from the Clearly For You stamp set stamped with Crumb Cake ink stamped once on a scrap sheet of paper and then onto the Very Vanilla cardstock.  The raspberry image is stamped with Cherry Cobbler ink and the edges of the cardstock were sponged with Cherry Cobbler ink.  The Very Vanilla is matted to Basic Black and Cherry Cobbler cardstocks.  Stampin' Dimensionals were placed on the back of the focal point to adhere the focal point to the card front.

Love_Letters_Clearly_For_You_Inside
(click on card to see larger image)

The inside sentiment area of the card is lined with a piece of Very Vanilla cardstock; the edges of the cardstock sponged with Cherry Cobbler ink.  The focal point images used for the card front were stamped in the lower right corner of the Very Vanilla cardstock using the same ink colors and stamping process as used for the focal point.  The tiny Thank You sentiment was stamped near the lower left corner of the background image, again using Cherry Cobbler ink.

This version of the focal point was created again (less the sponging) for the lower left front of the Medium Very Vanilla envelope.

Love_Letters_Clearly_For_You_Envelope
(click on envelope to see larger image)

I seldom use Basic Black for a card base.  In fact, I began with a Cherry Cobbler card base (using Basic Black for the accent color) and just couldn't get comfortable with the look of the card with so much red.  After taking a few laps along the hallway to stretch my legs and refocus, I came back to it and gave the Basic Black a try.  What a difference!  I think this card turned out to be the prettiest of all the Thank You cards that I made.

Robertssiggy

Stamps:  Clearly For You, Tiny Tags; Inks:  Cherry Cobbler, Crumb Cake; Cardstock:  Basic Black, Cherry Cobbler, Very Vanilla; Designer Series Paper:  Love Letters; Embellishments:  Very Vanilla 1/4" grosgrain ribbon, Linen Thread; Adhesives:  SNAIL, Mini Glue Dots, Stampin' Dimensionals; Tools:  Paper Cutter/Scorer, Paper Snips, Bone Folder, Sponge, Scallop Trim Border punch, Medium Jewelry Tag punch, Paper Piercer and Mat Pack (or 1/16" hole punch); Other:  Medium Very Vanilla Envelope


Thanks with Love (Letters)

Hi there!  Thanks for stopping by to visit!

I've made a whole lot of Thank You cards recently.  When my father first went into the hospital in late November, I made a bunch of cards for my Mom to use to Thank all those who had sent Prayer Cards and Mass Cards for my Dad's recovery.  As Dad's hospital stay continued, she used up quite a few of these cards.  A few weeks later, when we knew that recovery wasn't going to happen, I began making more Thank You cards while sitting with my Dad in the Hospice facility.  The outpouring of love, comfort, and encouragement after Dad's passing was nearly overwhelming from all of Mom and Dad's friends, folks from their church community, Dad's former co-workers, friends and co-workers of myself and my sisters and brothers, and from lots of family members.  We received flowers, Prayer Cards, Mass Cards, and best of all, donations to charities on Dad's behalf.  What a huge blessing!  Thinking that this might happen, I wanted to make sure that the cards Mom sent to Thank all these folks for their kindness and generosity were just right.

Designing and making the cards presented a challenge.  I could only bring a few supplies with me to the Hospice facility and those needed to fit into a small rolling file cart.  Thank goodness for Stampin' Up! Designer Series Paper!  I chose a pack of paper, pulled out cardstock and ink in the coordinating colors, a package of envelopes, tucked in some basic tools and adhesives, some "flat" embellishments (to minimize the postage costs), a few punches, and a couple of stamp sets that might do the trick.  Add a small table, a work light, and a chair and that was my task for the day.

Most of the time, it was hard to focus on a card design while sitting in the Hospice facility.  The reason for being there was never far away from my mind and there were times when I was consumed by the inevitability of the end situation.  But the staff members at the Hospice facility were intrigued with what I was doing and as the days wore on, they began to participate with helping me to work out design issues.  You see, if Dad was "awake" I would site with him and hold his hand while talking to him about what was going on around him; I would only work on the cards while he was "sleeping."  The supplies would be on the table and as the staff walked by (on their way into the room to check on Dad) they'd see what I was doing and we'd talk about what I was trying to achieve.  They'd look at the stamp sets, the embellishments, and the punches and ask the "what if" questions.  We'd talk about it and when Dad went back to "sleep" I'd work with their ideas to see what I could come up with.

Love_Letters_Butterflies
(click on card to see larger image)

The first couple of Thank You cards use the Love Letters Designer Series Paper.  An appropriate choice for Thank You cards, don't you think?  The edges of a strip of this truly lovely paper were sponged with Riding Hood Red ink and adhered to the bottom half of the card front (the edges of the card front were also sponged with Riding Hood Red ink).  A strip of Basic Black cardstock was punched with the Scallop Trim Border punch and a piece of Very Vanilla 1/4" grosgrain ribbon was knotted and placed over the top of the strip.  The ends were folded under the strip and pressed in place onto a small piece of Sticky Strip on the back of the strip.  The Basic Black strip was then placed over the top edge of the Designer Series Paper.

My focal point for this card is the sentiment from the Butterfly Prints stamp set.  I stamped that with Riding Hood Red ink on Very Vanilla cardstock, punched it out with the Scallop Oval punch, and then sponged the edges of the cardstock with Riding Hood Red ink.  I matted the sentiment with two pieces of Basic Black cardstock punched with the Scallop Oval punch; the two pieces cut apart to surround the punched sentiment.  The focal point was adhered to the card front with Stampin' Dimensionals.  The butterfly was stamped with Riding Hood Red ink on Very Vanilla cardstock and punched out with the Butterfly punch.  The same butterfly was stamped on the card front with Riding Hood Red ink and the punched butterfly was positioned on top of the card front butterfly and adhered with a Mini Glue Dot under its body.  The body of the butterfly was stamped on top of the punched butterfly with Early Espresso ink.  [Having this stamp set in the Clear Mount option certainly made positioning the butterfly's body correctly a breeze!]  Then the wings of the punched butterfly were gently pulled up.

Love_Letters_Butterflies_Inside
(click on card to see larger image)

The inside sentiment area of the card features a couple more of the butterflies from the Butterfly Prints stamp set, stamped with Riding Hood Red ink along the left side of the Very Vanilla cardstock.  The bodies of these butterflies were stamped with Early Espresso ink.  A sentiment from the Flight of the Butterfly stamp set extends from the upper butterfly toward the upper center of the cardstock.  The sentiment was also stamped with Early Espresso ink.  The edges of the Very Vanilla cardstock were sponged with Riding Hood Red ink prior to being adhered to the inside sentiment area of the card.

Love_Letters_Butterflies_Envelope
(click on envelope to see larger image)

The medium Very Vanilla envelope front was stamped with the same butterfly and sentiment used for the interior of the card.  This time, the sentiment resides along the left front side of the envelope with the butterfly positioned above the sentiment.

Butterflies often come to mind when I think of loved ones who have passed away.  I like to think of their souls visiting us on Earth as the butterfly visits flowers; gently flitting by to share their wonderful colors and charm, causing us to smile, and reminding us that there's a wonderful, loving Presence that makes our world possible.

Robertssiggy

Stamps:  Butterfly Prints, Flight of the Butterfly; Inks:  Early Espresso, Riding Hood Red; Cardstock:  Basic Black, Riding Hood Red, Very Vanilla; Designer Series Paper:  Love Letters; Embellishments:  Very Vanilla 1/4" grosgrain ribbon; Adhesives:  SNAIL, Mini Glue Dots, Stampin' Dimensionals, Sticky Strip; Tools:  Paper Cutter/Scorer, Paper Snips, Sponge, Bone Folder, Scallop Oval punch, Scallop Trim Border punch; Other:  Medium Very Vanilla Envelope