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Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Papercrafting Organization Day One

Hi Everyone!
I papercraft in my dining room. I mostly work at an old table that was discarded from one of my classrooms many years ago. I believe that the adage, "Out of sight, out of mind" rings true, so I like to keep my papercrafting supplies visible and organized so that I remember what I have. Stop laughing, Jeanne (and Peggy, Jan, Toni, Pattye, Gayle....) my papercrafting supplies ARE organized. It’s the rest of my stuff that needs a little help.

Most of my paper punches are stored in 2 clear shoe organizers that are hung on either side of my kitchen door. Yes, I said my kitchen door. There isn’t any other place to hang them that is close to my work space. They are visible and they are organized. Like I said that’s how I like my supplies to be.

My other punches are stored in a planter that I bought on clearance at JoAnn’s years ago. Look at the picture of it. It doesn’t take up a huge footprint, but does store the punches quite nicely and there’s even room for more of them! JoAnn’s gets those planters in every year so if you like what you are seeing you should be able to find one.

Yesterday while I was walking around HomeGoods I spotted a teak flatware organizer in the clearance section for only $5. It has 7 sections so it is slightly larger than the average flatware organizer. I knew instantly that it was deep enough to hold some of my stamps. Well, it turns out as you can see that it holds LOTS of my stamps. I am hoping that my sister, Jeanne, will be able to figure out a way to hang it on my wall. Hi, Jeanne! Are you reading this?

I am also hoping that Jeanne will be able to turn this shadow box that is holding other stamps in the landscape direction so I can arrange my stamps in a different way. Only stamps for the current "season" and everyday stamps are displayed. Right now I do not have room for other seasonal ones so they are stored in some plastic drawers. If my plan works and I can find a few more flatware organizers I am going to arrange all of them on the dining room wall with Jeanne’s help, of course, and then I can display all of my stamps. Visible and organized.

My buttons, LOVE my buttons, are sorted by color and are stored in glass canning jars. All of those years of being an early childhood educator paid off. I am great at sorting!!! I know that there are plastic jars sold for papercrafting supplies, but I prefer the look and feel of glass.

My paintbrushes, scissors, rulers, colored pencils, crimpers, paper piercing tools, and corner rounder punches are stored in a variety of ceramic vases and pots that were meant for plants. My thumb is only green after I have been stamping with a green ink pad so I found another use for all of those containers. They are fun and they are functional.

I have other organization ideas to share with you so please stop by tomorrow!

Saturday, April 24, 2010

Cardmaking Frenzy

Good Morning Everyone!
Shh! Don’t tell anyone. From time to time I think that maybe I have a little too much "stuff". But, then I get over that thought quickly. I’ve been on a card making frenzy. I was thrilled to discover that I had the thin teal ribbon that I "needed". Later on I had the thin green ribbon that I "needed". And I found the tiny plastic cherries that I knew I had stuck into some container, but wasn’t sure which one it had been.

It’s too bad that work and chores interfere with my passion for card making. I have two workshops, one parent/child program, and one children’s class next week that need to be prepped. I still need to move more stuff from the living room to the basement. There are also things like cleaning, grocery shopping and laundry that need to be done.
But...I can’t haul things to the basement until Rob wakes up and helps me. He’s going to the grocery store with me too, so I can put that off for a few hours. Workshop prep...well, I actually have been prepping in my mind as I create my cards. I do have to create the activities, but those can wait for a while too. After all, there are pictures to take and a blog to write.

When I purchased the supplies that I used in today’s cards, I didn’t have any specific plans for those supplies. The plastic cherries were "too cute" to leave in the bin. The little stickers were included in a block of Martha Stewart paper which was on clearance for $5.99 so how could I leave that sitting on the shelf. MaryBeth gave me a package of paper and one sheet of it had the elephant on it. The little hat, purse, and tag set were on clearance for .49 and my only regret was that there was only one set!
I do not consider myself to be an impulse shopper. I just "know" what I like and I enjoy looking for things that call out "card potential" to me.
So...I had 3 small pieces of paper with cherries on them that came from a DCWV small block called "Sweet" and I had some Mary Engelbreit rhinestone cherry accents that I picked up from the Dollar bin at Michaels months ago. Lately, I have seen cards with cherries on them in some of my magazines and I thought hmm, I have some cherries...
I used my circle Nestabilities to cut the white and red circles that have cherries on them. I love how easy it is to use Nestabilities and how nice they make things look. The Mother’s Day stamp is from the Lockhart Stamp Company.

This elephant card was so easy to make. Cut the paper, glue it on the card, add some text...done!

The "postage" stamps on this set of cards were in a Martha Stewart School Days block. I trimmed some brown tag and mounted the stamps on that tag so that they would "pop" off the card. Now that was easy. Cute too, don’t you think?

This last card was much more work...NOT! Okay, I admit it, Peggy. When I stamped "Happy Mother’s Day" onto that store bought tag, I messed it up a little. So I stamped on some bright yellow paper, cut it out, and mounted it onto the tag. Looks good. No one can tell the difference. The tag, hat, and purse were a little set that came with a dress too which I will use on another card.

None of these cards took long to make. In fact it takes me longer to take pictures and write my blog than it does to make most of the cards that I create. But the combination of card making and blogging is so much fun that I just have to do it!
Okay...time for reality. Talk to you soon.

Friday, April 23, 2010

Ink Pad Organization

Happy Friday to all!
When I began to papercraft my friend, Susan DeMuth, suggested that as I built up my collection of supplies, that I also find a "home" for each of those supplies. She knew from experience how easily ribbons, stamps, ink pads, and buttons could take over a papercrafting work space.

With those thoughts in mind instead of cards today I am going to share some ideas on ink pad organization. I store all of my ink pads in a wooden flatware organizer. I only paid $10 for this organizer at Home Goods, and I know you can find similar organizers in place like Target, for example. The organizer rests on its side and can store up to 60 Color Box ink pads in the 3 wide sections and up to 16 Distress Inks in the tall section. If you prefer StazOn or VersaColor ink pads you can store about 42 of them in the organizer.

Last night my friend Toni came by to create some cards with me. We talked about the papercrafting room that she is making at her home and about knowing what you have so that you don’t purchase multiples of the same stamp, paper punch, etc.

Toni created an Ink Pad recording sheet for us. We recorded the name of the ink pad and then stamped a sample of that color next to it. We can take that information to the store with us so that we don't purchase a duplicate ink pad. Or when we are making a card we can hold it next to our recording sheets to see which color of ink matches the paper the best.

If you would like a blank copy of the recording sheet please e-mail at and I will e-mail it to you. Please tell us how you organize your ink pads. If we can make this blog more interactive it will be more fun for all of us.
Have a great weekend!

Thursday, April 22, 2010

More Cards!

Hi Everyone!
I am very excited because I have some new stamps for Mother’s Day, Father’s Day, retirement, graduation, and First Communion and I have been trying most of them out.

These cards were created with a Hero Arts stamp called "Sally’s Bouquet". I love this stamp because it can be used for so many occasions. I colored the flowers in with my new water colors called "Twinkling H20’s". My friend, Toni, introduced me to them and I had to have some of my own. I need lots of work on my coloring as I don’t have shading down at all, but I am still happy with the cards I created.

I fell in love with the strawberry paper from Cosmo Cricket. Actually I fell in love with the entire line, but I was "good" and only bought a couple of sheets of the strawberry paper. (For now.)

When I bought the paper I planned to use my Accucut strawberry die to make a strawberry to put on the card, but it turned out that the strawberry was too big for the card that I wanted to make. My solution was an easy one. I used the die to cut out my strawberry and then used my scanner to reduce it by 50%. Then I cut out the copy and a strawberry from some scrapbook paper at the same time. I was so happy with the result. I plan to use that same technique with some of my other large dies

I used a "Happy Mother’s Day" stamp from Great Impressions on the card. The tag was cut from a Sizzix die. The ladybug is a button from Favorite Findings. I LOVE Favorite Findings buttons and just learned the other day that my friend, Susan, also loves them.

The First Communion stamps arrived in the mail yesterday in a drawstring bag. That was the first time I ever got a package in the mail that was a drawstring bag!
The stamps are from DRS Designs. They are larger than I expected them to be so I used them on a 5" x 7" card. I used gold ink from Color Box to stamp the chalice and the words. I colored the chalice in with my new "Autumn butternut" Twinkling H20 water color. I added Glossy Accents to the host and love how that made the host pop out.
Isn’t this giraffe photo holder adorable! I found it on sale in the Sears frame department. This cupcake photo holder came from Home Goods. Both of the holders are being used to hold cards on my computer table.
That’s all for today! Talk to you soon.

Sunday, April 18, 2010

"feel better soon"

Hi Everyone!
I am guessing that you may have had a day that you didn’t get as clear of an image as you wanted when you were rubber stamping. That’s how my morning went today. I was stamping the words "feel better soon" and I didn’t like the results I kept getting. I stamped over and over again on a sheet of white tag. Suddenly my frustration transformed into excitement. I had an idea!

I cut down a piece of white tag and used my Scor-Pal to score lines horizontally and vertically. Then I deliberately stamped "feel better soon" over and over again in more than one direction and with more than one color ink. A couple of times I taped over some of the words (for example "feel" and "soon") while I was applying ink to the stamp. Then I removed the tape before I stamped and only stamped "better" because there wasn’t any ink on the other 2 words. I don’t love the way the pink ink looks on this card, but I love the way the Moss Green and Cyan look next to each other.
The little penguin that I have popping off the card was created with a Memory Box stamp called "Posey Penguin". This concept lends itself to other words and phrases too. "Happy birthday", "Thank you", "Thinking of you"...the possibilities are endless.
Oh! How about stamping "Congratulations" over and over again, and then have some graduation caps popping out! Oh! The "Congratulations" could be stamped in the school colors.....Stay tuned!

Saturday, April 17, 2010

Saturday's Creations

Hi Everyone!

Another dreary Saturday, but at least it's not raining. I moved a few more things down to the cellar, but I decided to spend today creating cards. I remember the first time my friend, Toni, came to my house to create cards. It was not only the first time she had been to my house, it was also the first time she had created cards. She sat there for hours finding papers that looked good together. At one point she sighed and said, "I feel as if I am decorating a house." But she loved making the cards and we now get together regularly to work together.

As I told you in my blog last night I am trying very hard to use the materials that I have and not run out to buy more of anything. That’s harder than you might imagine. I thought of Toni today as I tried to make the materials I have on hand work together. I felt as if I was the one "decorating a house."

I found one sheet of 12" x 12" paper in my stash that had variations of the word "mother" all over it in shades of pink and blue. I used my paper trimmer to cut it into 6 pieces and then mounted those 6 pieces onto some pale turquoise cards. I played around for hours with ribbon, paper punches, Nestabilities, and stamps trying to put the cards together. I desperately wanted some white pearl embellishments, but finally settled for the pink ones that I had. I also wanted a rubber stamp that had the words, "Happy Mother’s Day" written in one straight horizontal line. I found one with a tiny font in my set of "Blooming Buttons" from PaperTrey Ink and decided I could make it work. I do have one other stamp that says "Happy Mother’s Day", but the words are written as 3 separate fairly large lines and are more suitable for the inside of a card than the outside of one. So far I have finished 2 of those cards. I like them, but don’t love them. I not so secretly want some white pearls instead of the pink ones. But I do like the way the stamps I used look.

While I was making yesterday’s cards I found some paper in the Martha Stewart School Days block that I thought would make a cute gift bag for a little boy. I used my "Around Town" template from PaperTrey Ink to create the gift bag.

I used a pink Marvy Uchida merchandise tag to create the gift tag.
After I made the bag I cut down some of the leftover scraps to make a card. I glued the paper onto a golden yellow card. The sailboats and the car looked too flat to me. I searched through my scraps and cut out an additional car and 3 additional boat bottoms. I used 3D dots and placed them on top of the car and boat bottoms on the card. I cut some tiny flags out of scraps and put them on the sails of the ship. I added tiny brads to create hub caps on the car. I stamped and mounted the words "Happy Birthday" onto another scrap and then attached those words to the card with 3D dots. Now I am happy with my card. I wish I had taken a before and after picture so that you could see the difference.

So for today I have managed to use the materials that I already have. But my favorite tape runner (Xyron) is empty and I only have a few mini glue dots left (Mini Dot n Go) so at some point I will have to do a little shopping. I will stay away from the paper and stamps sections...promise!

Friday, April 16, 2010

Thank you for a great school year!

Hi Everyone!

I have been learning many things as I write my blog. I have learned that no matter how excited I may be about a card I should wait until daylight to take a picture of it. I have learned that if I rest a piece of white tag on the edge of my kitchen sink in front of the kitchen window, place the card on the center of the tag, and turn off my flash before I take the picture, I don’t have any glare on the picture.

I also realized something last night. Although I create cards almost everyday, I have only been sharing some of those cards in this blog because I haven’t been showing cards that I created using dies that are no longer available. I realized that I don’t always have the dies or papers that are shown in the magazines and blogs that I read, but I still enjoy looking at the pictures. More often than not those pictures trigger ideas for cards that I can and do make. So I plan to show you more of the cards that I create and hope that they will trigger ideas for you.

I am going to be attending my first craft fair in May. I have purchased some graduation, Mother’s Day and Father’s Day stamps to create some seasonal cards. I didn’t start stamping until last summer so I don’t have any of those stamps already. I have also decided that I must make myself work with the thousands of sheets of scrapbook paper that I have here and not run out and buy more paper. I am going to attempt to limit myself to only purchasing consumables like glue dots and ScorPal tape and work with all of the ribbon, glitter, Stickles, paper punches, dies, brads, and embossing folders that I already have.

Last night I decided to create some End of the School Year thank you cards. I used an assembly line format so that I could create many cards in a short time. I have a Zip’eMate apple die that I used to cut out the apples. The middle punches out of the apple when the die is run through my Cuttlebug machine. I wanted to add more interest to the apple so I separately cut the stems and leaves out of brown and green paper. I created a template for "Thank you for a great school year!" in Printmaster. I used my pink circle Marvy Uchida paper punch to punch out the circles. You normally need Printmaster to be able to open a Printmaster file, but if I save it as a PDF anyone can open it. That means you won’t be able to alter the file, but you can print it and use it as it is. If you would like to get that file please e-mail at and I will send it to you.

The apples looked too "flat" when I glued them directly to the card so I put mini 3D dots behind them to add dimension to them. The paper that is behind the apples is mostly from the DCWV School Days block. The apples, stems, and leaves are cut from Martha Stewart’s School Days Multimedia Paper.
Have a great day!

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Mushroom Cards

Hi Everyone!

This week is really racing by, isn't it!

So what did I make today? Mushroom cards! Or should I say, "Cards with a mushroom on them." I was scrolling through the images of the paper piecing cards on the Scrapbooks, ETC. site when I saw a mushroom card and decided to make one, then two and then a third.

Basically all 3 cards are the same other than I played around with different scraps of paper to create them. I plan to make a 4th one and then a coordinating box or bag for them. I’ll give the set to one of the "mothers" in my life.
Yes, I said "mothers". After my mother passed away Annie Fay-Holt, Alice Baylies, Marie Johnson, Jan Jeffrey, and one of my grandmothers, Nana Kay, quickly stepped in to "mother" me. Alice, Marie, and Nana Kay have also passed away, but Jan Jeffrey and Annie still play a very special role in my life. Either one of those special ladies will love the mushroom cards. They both make us feel so good. They "ooh" and "aah" over the paper crafts I create and the cookies and breads that Rob and I bake for them.

You will notice that today I remembered to use my corner rounder punch and one of my Cuttlebug embossing folders too. The embossing folder I used is called "Tiny Bubbles". I thought that the tiny raised circles on it tie in nicely with the circles on each of the mushrooms. I put 3D dots behind the mushrooms and the grass to add dimension to the cards.

I may take off one of the "hi"s and substitute some other word or perhaps I will make another set of cards and then I will have a "hi" card for each set. Hmm, I like that idea. It will be fun to turn other scraps of paper into mushrooms.

Fun. Life should be fun. It’s fun to create cards and fun to share them with others. It’s fun to blog about them and fun to read about your reactions to them.

Today I finally made little labels for the backs of my cards. They have the logo that my awesome friend Susan created for me and my e-mail address. I printed them on small clear labels.

Okay, I have miles to go before I sleep. I have a workshop tomorrow afternoon that I need to finish prepping. Have a great night.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Today's Cards

Happy Tuesday Everyone!
I made 2 cards today and am hoping to make a few others tonight. Creating cards is so soothing, so satisfying, and so much fun.

I used 2 of my favorite techniques on this first card, paper piecing and stitching. The paper piecing pattern for the adorable little bird is one of the many free piecing patterns you can print from Scrapbooks, ETC. I added some dimension to my bird by placing some 3D dots behind him when I attached him to my card.
I used a flourish template from Bazzill Basics to create the "song" that the bird is singing. I used the template as a guide to show me where to pierce the paper and then I used a backstitch to stitch the holes I created. The quote is from a stamp from Verses Rubber Stamps. Be sure to check out their site. They have so many "quotable" stamps that I would love to own. Toni and Pattye some of those stamps were MADE for you to own for sure! (And then I can use them too!)
It was fun to create the flower on this second card. I used a "Clings" stamp from Hero Arts. I stamped the flower onto 6 coordinating pieces of paper. I mounted one entire flower onto my card. I cut a petal from each of the 5 other papers and glued just the center edge of each petal to the flower. I threaded some cord through a button and used a large glue dot to attach it to the flower.
If you purchase any cling stamps remember that you will need to attach them to a clear block.
Toni was trying to figure out how to attach a photograph to her comment. We don’t think it can be done through blogger, so if you would like me to post a photograph of one of your cards or other papercrafts please e-mail it to me and then I can add it to the blog. My e-mail is Please put "photo for blog" in the subject area.
Have a great night!