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Thursday, March 31, 2011

Black and White

Hi Everyone!

I cannot believe that it is snowing here AGAIN! Hello-o-o, Mother Nature.  Spring was supposed to start 10 days ago!

Marie will celebrate her 24th birthday this Sunday, April 3. I am excited about the plans I have for her special day. The comforter on her bed and the other accessories in her bedroom are black and white. When we are out shopping she stops to examine anything that could fit in with her room's decor. So I have decided to give her a black and white birthday party.

One of the gifts I am giving her is a handmade gift bag that is filled with cards. I pulled out my black and white buttons, ric rac, ribbons, twine, embroidery floss, and pearls and put them in an apothecary jar on my work table. I found just a few dcwv pieces of black and white patterned paper in my stash so I decided it was time to do some shopping. I found a 12" x 12" Black and White stack of cardstock from Me and My Big Ideas that was exactly what I wanted.

The colors on the cards and bag are actually snow white and black.  The photographs are a little muted because it was a gray day here today when I was taking pictures.  I used the large All Around Town Timeless Template from PaperTrey Ink to create this gift bag. The black circles on the paper are flocked.

Marie's quilt is black and white. The reversible side of it is the exact shade of blue that I used on this card. I used a wooden holiday tree stamp from A Muse Artstamps to create the party hats that you see on the card. I colored some of the sections on each hat with a black marker.  My Picksey Pick-Ups helped me pick up and add tiny black and white adhesive pearls to each of the hats. "Happy Birthday" was stamped with an Impression Obsession stamp. The edges of the card stock that the hats are mounted on are outlined with black baby ric rac. I used a Martha Stewart edger punch to edge the black and white dotted paper.

This summer Marie is going to be a bridesmaid for the first time. I used a blank black card and some white tag to create this wedding card for her to give to her friends.  I ran the white tag through a Cuttlebug embossing folder. The stamps I used are from a Hero Arts clear set of wedding stamps.

The flowers on this card were stamped with a Sun Days wooden stamp from Hero Arts. The brads, ribbon, and paper are from my stash. The text was stamped with a Judi Lynn Stamp of Excellence stamp.

Here's my favorite card in this collection. The paper is from the Black and White collection from Me & My Big Ideas.  The 4 rectangles that I glued onto the blank black card measure 1.25" wide x 3.75" tall. The text was stamped with a clear stamp. I am not sure which company created it.

I used black and white enamel accents to highlight the decorations on the cupcake. The cupcake was created with a Hero Arts big cupcake cling stamp. I ran the muffin wrapper through one of my crimpers to make it look more realistic.

Here's a quilted card. You know how much I love to create them. I added felt buttons to it. MaryBeth, you gave me those buttons!

I glued alternate strips of black and white patterned paper to this card. Then I added some ric rac and felt buttons to it along with Maya Road Rub-ons.
And that's it for now.  So far I've finished Marie's bag, her birthday card, and 7 cards for inside the bag.
Have a great night!

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Happy Birthday Owen

Hi Everyone!
I've missed you and hope you've missed me.  I have been incredibly busy with teacher trainings and will be busy with them for the next few weeks.  Since this blog is one of my hobbies, from time to time it has to take a backseat to other commitments.

While I have been planning, preparing, and presenting teacher trainings, I've had so many request for cards from mainly friends and families that I've had to keep on list of them on my computer so I won't forget anyone.  I spent the morning taking inventory of my cards so I know what I need to work on for the upcoming craft fairs.  I also took the time to straighten out all of my crafting supplies so that I am familiar with what I have and what I need.  Then I created the first card I've made in at least a week which is highly unusual for me. 

My friend Sandy's grandson, Owen, will celebrate his 3rd birthday in a little over a week.  Sandy said that Owen loves trucks and tools.  I decided to make him a truck card.  I searched in the local chain craft stores for some "cool" truck stickers, but didn't find anything I liked.  Then I remembered I've had that same problem in the past.  One of these days I need to order some online so I'll have them here when I need them.  Happily I do have a wooden dump truck stamp that I decided to use.  Be sure to click on the photograph to enlarge it so you can see it more clearly. 

I used a ColorBox black pigment ink pad to stamp the image 3 times on some yellow tag.  Then I fussy cut each truck.  I cut some black tag to create the road and some paper from October Afternoon to create the hills.  I used a white "Gelly" Roll marker to draw the lines on the road.  The trucks and one of the hills are attached to the card with adhesive foam to add dimension to the card.  If you look closely you will see a silver rhinestone headlight and a red rhinestone tail light on each truck.  I added some black pearl stickers to the smoke stacks and one of the tires on each truck.  The trucks are hauling cupcakes for the birthday boy. 

I stamped the text on a scrap of tag and then punched the side edges to make it look like a ticket.  I added some black pearl stickers to it.  There are 3 of lots of things on the card.  Owen's brother Henry and cousin, Sami, can help Owen find them. 

Hope you have a nice evening. 
I'll try to stop by again tomorrow. 

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Framed Buttons

Hi Everyone!

My grandmother, Nana Riley, had a black floral tin that was filled with buttons. I loved to feel their smoothness as I ran my fingers through them. I played with them and sorted them over and over again.

When she moved from Wren Street to an apartment on Spring Street Nana gave my mother the buttons. When I became a teacher my mother gave them to me. I kept them in my math learning center and my students played with them and sorted them as I had many years before.

One year while I was teaching at the Hastings School in Lexington my students were especially fascinated with the buttons. One day on their own they glued a sequence of buttons from smallest to largest to a strip of posterboard. Each day some of them would arrive with buttons hoping to have found one that was smaller or larger than the smallest and largest ones on the posterboard. If they found one that worked they added it to the posterboard.

One day a little boy named Jimmy arrived with a very tiny pink button. It was the tiniest button any of us had ever seen and was most definitely smaller than any button on the posterboard. Jimmy proudly added the button to our collection. It turned out that Jimmy had snipped the button off of his newborn baby sister's sweater!

One year a student's grandmother worked in the Women's department at Lord and Taylor's. She gave us tiny packages of beautiful buttons that were the extras that are often attached to clothing and fall to the floor when someone tries on the clothing.

Now that I am no longer in the classroom I use my buttons to embellish cards, wreaths, gift bags and more. I have them sorted by color and store them in pint and quart canning jars.

The newest special issue from PaperCrafts magazine is called 350 Cards & Gifts. There's a framed button shadow box by Jessica Witty featured on the cover. It's also on page 131. The minute I saw it I knew I wanted to create one to hang in my crafting corner.
I had a frame in my closet that is similar to Jessica's, but it's not a shadow box. I removed the glass from it and added some buttons to the center of it. I LOVE it.
Now I have to rearrange things just slightly on the walls in my own little corner so that it can be hung above my rubber stamps.
I have 2 workshops again today so I am heading out the door. 
Hope you have a great day!

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Anything But a Card Challenge

Hi Everyone!

I created today's project for the Impression Obsession Anything But a Card Challenge.  When I learned about the challenge I had just purchased their incredibly beautiful wooden Zinnias stamp and was dying to use it right away.  So I decided to use it on a gift bag. 
The Impression Obsession wooden stamps that I used for this project were
Blooming Spring
Bee Back
Bee Right
The bag was created with a Timeless Template from PaperTrey Ink called "Around the Town".  I ran double sided patterned paper through my printer to print the bag's pattern.  I followed their directions to create my bag and used an oval punch to create the handle. 
I used my Tuxedo Black Memento ink pad to print the stamp onto some water color paper.  Then I used my DerWent water color pencils to color in the flowers. 
I mounted the water color paper onto a rectangle of paper that is the same as the lining of the bag. 
I die cut a tag and stamped the text onto it.   I masked my stamp so that I stamped just one of the zinnias onto the tag along with 2 bees.  I attached the tag to the bag with a brad from my stash. 
I am planning to create some all occasion spring themed cards to put inside the bag.
Have a great night! 

Monday, March 14, 2011

Denami Design Floral Frenzy Challenge

Hi Everyone!

Thanks to everyone who posted a comment for the card I submitted to the Denami Design Floral Frenzy Blog Hop.  I truly appreciate all of your kind words.  It's been a long day.  I presented 2 two hour workshops back to back today and I am beat.  But... I couldn't go to bed without posting on my blog.

Since the blog hop filled so quickly everyone is being given a chance to submit a card for the Denami Design Floral Frenzy Challenge.  This card took a lot less time to create than my card for the Frenzy did, but I am happy with it. I used 3 Denami Design stamps to create it.
Medium round bowl # H82
Small blossom daisy #D75
Wavy stem trio #F187

I stamped the bowl onto a scrap of patterned paper, fussy cut it and glued it to a sheet of dotty patterned paper. I masked the top of the bowl and stamped the wavy stamp trio so they'd appear to be in the bowl. I stamped three daisies onto white tag, embossed them, and fussy cut them out before I used mini glue dots to adhere them to the wavy stems. Used mini glue dots to adhere a tiny brown button to the center of each flower.

I used one of my Martha Stewart edger punches to embellish the edge of a piece of green striped patterned paper. Added some baby green ric rac to my "window shade" along with some twine for the shade's cord.

This card feels summery to me and makes me think of a cottage at the beach.

Have a great night.

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Denami Design Floral Frenzy Blop Hop

Hello Everyone!

Today I am honored and very excited about being a part of the Denami Design Floral Frenzy Blog Hop.  You can win a prize if you visit each blog along the way and leave a comment there. 

When: The blog hop starts on March 13 at 6 AM,PST. However, you have until March 14, 2011, 11:59pm PST, to leave comments on all the blogs (to be eligible for a prize).

Why: To be inspired by beautiful creations featuring DeNami Design stamps and also the chance to win mini shopping sprees on the DeNami Design website!

Prizes: They are giving away THREE $20 gift certificates to their website! They'll be giving away one gift certificate to a random participant (DT members not eligible) and then they'll also be giving away TWO gift certificates to TWO people who comment along the hop!
The blog hop begins at Paulina Nakamura's blog at
You may have arrived here from Debbie Marcinkiewicz's blog at
Here's my card for the blog.  I used the following Denami Design stamps to create it...
Chickie with Flower #C72
Daisy Small Blossom #D75
Hibiscus Small Bold # E6
I used my Scor Pal Buddy to create a grid on a piece of white tag.  Then I added scraps from my collection to create a quilt.  I ran the quilt through a Cuttlebug embossing folder before I added baby ric rac to it. 
I stamped the Chickie, Daisy and Hibiscus stamps 5 times each onto a sheet of white tag.  I colored each image in using my DerWent Water Color Pencils.   I fussy cut each image out and adhered just the center of each of  them to the quilt squares with mini glue dots.  I added a tiny pearl to the center of each hibiscus and a tiny rhinestone to the center of each daisy.  The top of the quilt was created with a Martha Stewart Edger Punch.  I attached the quilt to a Currant colored Memory Box A2 card.  I'd love to own a quilt like it. 
Please remember to leave a comment on my post before you go to Karen Larkin's blog at
If you get lost or want to start at the beginning here's the link again to the Denami Designs Blog and list of participants.

Have a wonderful day!

Saturday, March 12, 2011

St. Patrick's Day Cards Again!

Top of the Morning to ALL of you!

Last night I sat down and worked into the wee hours of today creating St. Patrick's Day cards.  Earlier in the day I studied the cards I made a few weeks ago and decided they weren't my favorites so I edited them.  My original cards looked too flat to me and didn't have any texture. 

First I went to JoAnn's where I picked up 3 packages of K & Company's "Happy St. Patrick's Day" Dimensional Stickers.  Kathy, I used the gift certificate you gave me to purchase them.  Thanks, Kathy!
I embossed all but one of the cards I created last night.  I like the one that isn't embossed, but I feel that the embossing adds something extra to the cards without adding weight to them.  In addition to dimensional stickers I used ribbon and alphabet stickers from my stash on the some of the cards.  You'll also see some Favorite Findings shamrock buttons on a few of the cards.  I created 2 of the pots of gold with a Denami Designs medium round bowl stamp.  They were on my first 2 cards that I shared a few weeks ago which are the ones I edited last night. 

You'll notice that each card is only slightly different from the others.  I am okay with that this time.  Simply by changing the direction of the card or the embellishments or papers on the card  I have provided choices. they are...

Hope that you find a pot of gold today!

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Thank you cards

Hi Everyone!

I've been spinning in so many directions that I am getting dizzy! In addition to trainings, classes, and dinners with friends, I've been busy with phone calls, face to face requests, and e-mails asking for thank you, bridal shower, St. Patrick's Day, and birthday cards. Speaking of birthays last night my friend Patty took me out for Chinese food for yet another birthday celebration. Love those crab rangoon! I think I'll be celebrating my next birthday before the celebrations for this one ends! Mind you, I am not complaining at all!

When I got home I decided to focus on thank you cards. Many of you that follow my papercrafting blog also follow other papercrafting blogs so you are familiar with the challenges that magazines, stamping companies, paper companies, etc. sponsor to help us get to know their products. Well, I decided to rein myself in by creating a challenge of my very own. I pulled out my Cuttlebug "thank you" embossing folder and all of my clear and wooden "thank you" stamps. My challenge is for me to use every one of those stamps to create the thank you cards that I need. I could just make multiples of a few cards, but it's going to be much more fun this way.

Diane, please study the photographs of my stamp collection. Notice that there is more than one stamp that says, "Thanks a Bunch!" Each one is a different size and font. They give me choices when I am creating "thank you" cards that may have a bunch of flowers or a bunch of balloons or whatever other "bunch" I want to use with the stamp.

I store most of my clear stamps in clear plastic cd cases as the set they were when I purchased them, but a long time ago I decided to store all of my "thanks" stamps in a cd case of their own. I did the same thing with "hello" and "happy birthday" stamps. That way I don't need to go through each case to find those messages which I tend to use quite often.

Now here's a funny story. After pulling out the embossing folder and all of those stamps without even thinking about them I used stickers to create the "thanks" message on these first 2 cards. The papers I used are from the Pixie-Licious 6" x 6" Mini Deck that Jeanne bought me. The flowers, brads, stickers, and ribbons are from my stash. Look at that large brad on the first card. Don't you just love how it picks up all of the colors of the papers on the card! MaryBeth you gave me those brads a long time ago!

These next 3 cards were created with papers from the GORGEOUS Sweet Nectar Designer Mat Pad from K & Company. Toni gave me this collection for my birthday. Toni, I LOVE this paper. The floral papers look like rich fabrics.

I should probably just end this post right here, but I love this last card so much that I want to share it with you today. I told you I created this "thank you" challenge for myself. I figure I made the rules so I can break them too. My collection of clear "thanks" stamps is fairly extensive so I decided rather than use each one of them on their own card, I'd use most of them on just one card. What fun I had randomnly tapping each stamp onto a different color ink pad and pressing them here and there onto my card. I heat embossed each message with detail clear embossing powder. I didn't like the empty space I had created at the top of the card so I added some Favorite Findings crayon buttons that were in my stash. I love this card. It may be one of my favorites.

So which of these cards do you like the best? Please post a comment so I'll know!

Have a great night!

Monday, March 7, 2011


Happy Monday Everyone!

My friend Cindy from Mississippi ( mentioned she'd like to know what Jeanne and I bought the other day so I'll start today's post with that story.

Jeanne takes Marie on a day long shopping trip each year on her birthday. This year Jeanne decided that she wanted to do the same thing with me on my birthday and said we'd go shopping for paper crafting supplies. I told her I'd happily shop online, but that wasn't her idea of fun. So we decided to go someplace I'd never been and drove for about an hour to Rockland, MA to shop at The Crop Shop. As soon as we walked into the store we were greeted by Dee who owns the shop and one of her employees, Jean. Dee was packing for a trade show so she asked Jean to give us a tour. It turned out that we "needed" that tour because The Crop Shop is divided up into about 6 rooms and has a huge classroom that comfortably seats about 30 people. Each room is not only packed with supplies, but also has samples and decorative touches that make the store feel especially comfortable and inviting. My sister isn't a paper crafter, but totally loved the way the store looked and felt.

After our tour Jeanne grabbed a basket and told me to start shopping. In the second room I found Cosmo Cricket's Pixielicious 6" x 6" Mini Deck and some "Sweet Song" paper from My Mind's Eye's Alphabet Soup collection.

Jeanne has always loved "Lego" and squealed with delight when she discovered some Lego stickers and sheets of red, blue, green, and yellow Lego paper. She quickly added those things to the basket and said I could make something for her new house or her birthday with it. I found a package of school themed "BINGO" cards that I'll use for either end or beginning of the school year cards. Peggy, I was thinking of you when I saw them. I think the nieces and nephews will like them!

I've been looking every where for the We R Memory Keepers "Sew Easy" Stitch Piercer Handle and was thrilled to finally find it. Even though Jeanne was willing to buy me all of the "Stitch Piercers", I chose just the "cross" stitch one so that I can make sure that I like it and will use it. It turns out that you can stitch at least 3 different ways with the "cross" stitch piercer which I think is very cool. I've played with it a little and already know that I will be getting other stitch styles one of these days.

My favorite purchase came from the Holidays room. It's a 6" x 6" paper pad called "Peep" from We R Memory Keepers. As you may have guessed the papers in this pad are Easter related and I've already made some cards with it.

The Crop Shop has a Rewards Club. Each time you visit the store your card is stamped with the pre tax total of your day's purchases and when your card is filled you receive the average of those purchases as a gift certificate to the store.

If you are in need of a "feel good" kind of shopping day you'll want to visit The Crop Shop. They aren't especially deep on stamps, but I was told that they are increasing their inventory in that area. Sometimes just being warmly greeted and having the opportunity to walk around and absorb the atmosphere, view creative ideas, and add a few new goodies to your stash makes for a very special day.

Here are 2 of the cards that I've made so far using paper from the "Peep" Paper Pad. When I saw the layering paper on this first card I immediately thought of those marshmallow bunnies and chicks that we know of as "Peeps". Happily I have a "Peeps" bunny and a text stamp that says "for peeps sake!" from A Muse Artstamps.

I used them for this card along with a "Happy Easter" stamp from Denami Designs. The eggs and basket are Favorite Findings buttons that I purchased at JoAnn Fabrics. The ink I used for all stamped images is a Razzberry Color Box pigment ink pad.

The papers on this card are also from the "Peep" paper pad. The basket and eggs were created with a Martha Stewart paper punch. The bow on the basket is from another Martha Stewart paper punch. The stickers and yellow ric rac are from my stash.

I have more cards and other goodies to share with you sometime soon.

Have a great night!

Friday, March 4, 2011

Hoppy Birthday to ME

Good Morning!

It's nice to see a blue sky again today. Now if the sun could warm us up just a little! I celebrated my 58th birthday yesterday. I am having one of those wonderful birthdays where the celebrating goes on and on. It started with a package that was overflowing with papercrafting goodies from MaryBeth and has continued with a pre-birthday dinner at Jeanne's last Sunday, a day of shopping and eating out with Jeanne yesterday, a family party hosted by Marie tonight, and Chinese food with Patty next Thursday. I have daffodils from Diane on the dining room table and daisies from Marie on the kitchen counter and in the bay window. There are cards on the mantle and cake balls in the refrigerator. Fun! Fun! Fun!

In between planning and prepping some early childhood teacher trainings and a cooking class for a new afterschool program, I've been busy creating cards for online challenges and trying to rebuild my card inventory.

The minute I saw this wooden "Flower Frog" stamp from Hero Arts I knew I had to add it to my collection. Don't those big eyes and that wide smile on his face make you smile? I have a variety of great text messages I plan to use with that frog, but the first card I created with him was this "Hoppy Birthday!" card. I created the background cattails by adding Stickles to a long grass stamp from A Muse Artstamps. The clouds are die cuts from PaperTrey Ink that I paper pierced. The full view frog is attached to the card with foam tape. The frog's eyes are highlighted with black enamel accents.

I have a stack of cards that need to be photographed, but I need to focus on planning my workshops today. I'll try to post more cards sometime this weekend.

Would you like to see photographs of some of the goodies I have purchased recently and where I got them? If so, please leave me a comment and I will photograph the goodies while I am taking pictures of my cards.

Talk to you very soon.