It's finally here . . .

. . . the blog candy *and* the new SU! catalog!!!!!!!!!!!!! Whoo hoo! So, the blog candy includes this notebook (from Target) that I altered using some patterned paper by Rhonna Farrer for Autumn Leaves (also from Target). Also, I am including 36 quarter sheets of SU! designer series paper from the following collections: Oxford, Cambridge, Sarah, Rebecca, Recollections, and Sentimental Journey. And that's not all! The blog candy also includes two unmounted stamps from Starving Artist! I hope you all like this little ensemble that I have complied for you! For a chance to win, just leave a comment here on this post with a question you might have for me. The contest will run through Sunday, and on Monday morning I will have my daughter randomly pick a winner! Easy peasy, right? I am off to drool over my catty some more! There is no better way to celebrate my birthday weekend! *wink*

It's done . . .

Well, almost! I finished creating the blog candy this morning, and I am in the process of compiling a few extra goodies to pair with it. I will post it tomorrow! *grin* Tonight I hope to be flippin' through the pages of my very own copy (courtesy of my pal, Kelly! *waves*) of the new Stampin UP! Fall/Winter Collection catalog!!! Whoo hoo! In the meantime, I'd like to share with you a card I received from one of my blog readers, Danita (aka moberkitty on SCS). Isn't it lovely! I think the colors and layout she used are just fabulous! Thanks so much, Danita!!!

I'm working . . .

. . . on the blog candy, that is! I *finally* decided what I'd offer up for y'all as a little bit of appreciation for your continued support. It is still in the works, but I promise to have it done by the end of the week, ok? This is a really busy time of year for us. My daughter just celebrated her 5th birthday! Also, my birthday is coming up, as well as my wedding anniversary. However, it is the unveiling of the new Stampin' UP! catalog that makes this time of year especially exciting! I haven't even had time to stamp since Friday morning!!! *gasp* I will continue to work on the blog candy, but in the meantime I'd like to share another beautiful Blogger RAK with you! I received this card last week from Robyn Cardon (aka robynstamps on SCS). Head on over to her blog, The Pink Stamper, and check out all the goodies she has to share! Robyn, I *love* this card! It features one of my all-time favorite color combinations - pink and chocolate! Thanks so much for thinking of me!

Beate's Simple Sketch . . .

This is Beate's Sketch for this weekend. I *love* the simplicity of it! And I am lucky enough to "own" a Beate original of the same design! *grin* I am still lovin' my new Baroque Motifs set, so I decided to make yet another card with it! I am really hoping to see more sets like this in the new SU! catty - won't be long now! *giddies* I started by selecting a piece of Brocade Backgrounds designer series paper for the background of my card, and matted it onto a shimmery vanilla card base. Next I cut a 1 1/4" strip of shimmery vanilla cs and pierced both sides using my new Cutterbee Piercing Bug. Lemme tell you, this takes all the fuss out of piercing - it is so easy to use!!! I stamped the kind sentiment in River Rock ink and matted the strip onto some Chocolate Chip cs. Then I stamped the flower image in River Rock ink onto shimmery vanilla cs and punched it out using my 1 1/4" circle punch. I added a piece of chocolate cs which I punched with my 1 3/8" circle punch to the back and put an aged copper brad through the center. The medallion is popped up on dimensionals. This sketch would work fabulously for any patterned paper - why not give it a try? *wink* Oh, and I have decided to take the weekend to ponder what I will be offering as my blog candy. Never fear, I will post it early next week! Have any ideas of what you'd like to see? Drop me a line . . . ;)

Another Sweet Blogger RAK . . .

This one is from Lisa (aka Silvergirl on SCS). I was Lisa's big sis a few rounds back on DDSS. Lisa is a fabulously talented stamper, and recently has been giving some great artistic tips over on her blog, Silver Stamping. This card is so beautiful! I think she used the Faux Mother of Pearl technique to create the shimmery background. I love this all in purples!!! Lisa also used the Doodle This and Small Sayings stamp sets. Thank you, Lisa for thinking of me and for making *me* smile! You are super sweet and I am so glad to have "met" you through stamping!!!

It's hip to be square . . .

Today's "Ways to Use It" challenge was to make a square card. Well, I made three! I needed three cards to send and I don't know what else to say except that I was inspired I guess! This first card is a sympathy card for a fellow Splitcoaster, who lost her mother to cancer this past weekend. I was in her shoes about two years ago, so I know what she must be going through! {{{hugs}}} Julia! I hope this card brings you some comfort at this difficult time! I knew I wanted to use my new Artful Inkables calla lily (available at www.starvingartistamps.com). I stamped it in black StazOn ink on watercolor paper, and added the sentiment from the Brighter Tomorrow set. I watercolored the image using celery and saffron inks and my aquapainter. I matted the main image panel onto black cs after notching the corners using my 1/4" inch circle punch to create a faux ticket corner look. Next I added a piece of celery ds paper from the Palette O' Prints on top of a So Saffron card base and notched the corners with my 1/4" circle punch. I added some clack brads in the corners. Finally I added two pieces of black dotted organdy ribbon.

For the next card, I knew I wanted to use the Pick a Petal stamp set. I started by stamping the smile petal in black StazOn on polka dotted paper from the Palette O' Prints collection in celery, rose red, saffron, and amethyst. I cut out the petals and adhered them to a piece of shimmery white cs, which I stamped with the dotted trail image from the Little Lady set by PaperTrey Ink. Next I added the center, which is half of a 1" circle punched from black cs. I added a portion of the sentiment, also from the Little Lady set, and matted the main image panel onto black cs. Next I punched 1" circles from each of the colors of cs and placed them around the card base of black cs layered with shimmery white cs on top. As a finishing touch I added some black dotted organdy ribbon and popped the main image up on dimensionals.

For the third card, I knew I wanted to use the Butterfly Kisses set by PaperTrey Ink. I thought it would be neat to pair the swirly butterfly with the Baroque Motifs stamp set and Brocade Background designer series paper. I used a River Rock card base and stamped it with the large flourish image in Chocolate Chip ink. Next I took a strip from the ds paper and sponged it with chocolate ink before matting it onto shimmery vanilla and chocolate cs. I attached three aged copper brads to the bottom of the strip. Next I stamped the butterfly onto shimmery vanilla cs in chocolate ink and added the kind sentiment in River Rock ink. I punched the circle out with my mega circle punch and sponged the edges in River Rock ink. Finally, I matted the main image onto a giga scalloped circle punched from Chocolate Chip cs, which I notched the scallops of with my 1/16" punch. All cards featured today are 4.25" squares. I have not forgotten about the blog candy, I am just trying to decide what to offer! Stay tuned! *wink*

If it's not Baroque . . .

Today is Wednesday, and you know what that means - it's time for another SCS Sketch Challenge!!! I decided to use my new favorite stamp set, Baroque Motifs again - mostly because I just can't seem to put it down! I just love the elegant look of this set and it is super easy to use! To quote a line from one of my favorite Disney movies, Beauty and the Beast, "If it's not Baroque, don't fix it." I am tending to agree . . . *wink* I started with a River Rock card base, and stamped the large flourish across it diagonally, about one and a half times using River Rock ink. Next I selected a piece of designer series paper from the coordinating Brocade Backgrounds collection and sponged the sides using Chocolate Chip ink. I matted it onto a strip of Chocolate Chip cs and adhered it to the card base. Next I punched out a circle from some shimmery vanilla cs using my mega punch and sponged the edges using chocolate ink. I stamped the large medallion in chocolate and the stamped the large flower in olive ink on a separate piece of cs and cut it out. I stamped the small flower in chocolate ink and punched it out using my 1/2" circle punch and adhered it to the larger flower. I added an aged copper brad to the center, and popped it up on dimensionals over the medallion image. Then I matted the entire circle onto a mega scalloped circle I punched from chocolate cs and notched the scalloped using my 1/16" punch. Finally, I adhered the image to the card using dimensionals. Well, this is my 150th post and I'm thinking it is time for some blog candy, what do you think? Stay tuned for more info in the not-so-distant future! *grin*

Stamps for Sale!

Well, I am thinking it is high time I cleaned out my little stampin' corner. It is gettin' a little crowded over there, not much room for me anymore - LOL! So, I have decided to have a stamp sale. If you are interested in purchasing anything before I head over to the dreaded e-place, just drop me a line and let me know! Prices do not include shipping costs. Some of these will not be available to ship until July 1st per SU! guidelines, but I will definitely reserve it for you! *wink* Any questions, just let me know!

Here's the list:

All I Have Seen - $10
All Year Cheer I - $20
Expressive Flexible Phrases - $30
Flower Filled - $18
Fresh Fillers - $8
Fun Filled - $10
Good Things Grow - $15
Holiday Blocks - $15
Holiday Print BG - $12
In Full Bloom - $18
Island Blossoms - $30
Lexicon of Love - $10
Little Layers II - $14
Little Layers Plus - $14
Little Shapes $5
Love It - $18
Olive You - $10
Quick Thinking - $10
Shapes & Shadows - $20
Sketch an Event - $20
Stipple Celebrations - $18
The Fine Print - $6
Tiny Talk - $12

Whimsical Blossoms wheel - $4
Gifts Galore Wheel - $4
Island wheel - $5
Lots of Hearts jumbo wheel - $6
Bold Blooms jumbo wheel - $6
Paper Piecing Punch - $10
Island Blossoms SS Kit - $10
Just Delightful SS Kit - $10 - pending
Big Impressions Starter Kit - $15 - pending

Circle Hello . . .

It is time for another Sketch Challenge from Beate! Can I just say again how fabulous she is? I mean, the girl is on vacation and she is still posting to her blog every day!!! That's some serious dedication! *wink* This weekend, Beate's challenge is to make a circle card. I have never made a circle card before, but it was so much fun! I don't own any sort of circle cutting system, so I looked around and grabbed a small paint can and traced the bottom of that for my circle. Then I scored the paper at the edge and folded it to make two sides of the card. I cut out the circle with my paper snips and erased the pencil lines and voila! Next I added a strip of white cs for the spine of the card. I attached some clack brads and some black gingham ribbon. Then I scored the card again just under the ribbon. For the main image I stamped 5 of the sketch outline petals from the upcoming Pick a Petal set by Stampin' UP! They were stamped in Versamark on Groovy Guava cs and embossed in black. I cut them out using my paper snips and adhered them to the card. Next I embossed the scalloped center in white on black cs and cut it out. I added a clear crystal brad int he center and popped it up on dimensionals. For the sentiment I chose of of the studio G $1 images I purchased at Michaels and stamped it in Black StazOn. I love this color combination!!! Thanks for another fun sketch, Beate!!!

Christmas in June . . .

Well, here they are! The last of my card swaps that are due this month!!! I am very excited to have them done - yippee! Now I have to finish my Rolodex cards for another swap, and then get to work on my Circle Journal. *phews* I love this set, but I was soooo not in the mood to be making Christmas cards! It is called Perfect Presentation, and will be a level 2 hostess set in the upcoming SU! Fall/Winter Collection. For the first card I started by stamping the library card from Stamp of Authenticity in chocolate ink on Very Vanilla cs. Next I stamped the tree image in River Rock ink. On a separate piece of cs I stamped the merry definition stamp, which I inked using my red and olive markers. I cute it out and popped it up on dimensionals. Then I matted the library card onto Chocolate Chip cs and adhered it to the 4.25" square River Rock card base. I stamped the North Pole circle and the Merry Christmas sentiment (from Glad Tidings) in Versamark ink and embossed them in gold. Finally, I added some red gingham ribbon.

For the second card, I started with a 4" square of Sofy Sky cs. I cut a small vellum square and sewed it (not well) on three sides to the Soft Sky panel. Next I created a frame around the pocket using the snowflake image and Not Quite Navy ink. I matted this panel to a 4.25" Navy card base. Next I took the snowman image and inked it up with Soft Sky ink and rocked and rolled it in the Night of Navy ink before stamping it on whisper White cs. I trimmed around the image and matted it onto some Not Quite Navy cs. I used the tag corner punch at the top to create a tag, and added some narrow white organdy ribbon with a staple. Tuck the tag in the pocket and voila!

I just realized that all five swap cards I made are square cards. This is not normally a shape I use, so I guess I must've been in a square sort of mood! I also used the UHU Glue Roller, which I received as a promotional item, to complete all 56 of my swap cards! Lemme tell you, they took alot of adhesive and I was quite pleasantly surprised that I didn't run out!!! This adhesive holds well, and is super nice to hold and easy to use! Best of all - it is refillable!!! Thanks, UHU!

Hi . . .

Well, one more group down and now I only have two more to go! This card features the Pick a Petal set, which will be featured in the SU! Fall/Winter Collection. I started with a Soft Sky 4.25" square card base. I use my slit punch to create a scalloped border from black cs, and slid a strip of Purely Pomegranate cs underneath to make it pop a bit. I used my 1/8" circle punch to notch the scallops and added some black gingham ribbon across the panel. To create the flower I stamped three polkadotted petals in Soft Sky ink on shimmery white cs, and three scalloped petals in Versamark ink on Purely Pomegranate cs. I cut out all the petals - 72 of them! - and then matted the polkadotted petals onto black cs and cut them out again using my tiny scalloped scissors. Next I stamped the scalloped centers in Versamark on black cs, embossed them in white and cut the out. I arranged the petals onto the card base and popped up the center on dimensionals. Finally, I created the "hi" sentiment using the Typeset Alphabet Lower and black ink (although it looks blue-ish here). I think it turned out cute, and I hope my fellow swappers agree! *wink*

Swaps, swaps, swaps . . .

*Phews* Well, I have completed the second group of swaps I signed up for - only 3 more to go!!! This card was inspired by a card made by JanTInk over at SCS. I loved the layout and papers she used, and I added a few of my own touches as well. I started with a 4.25" square card base of River Rock cs - one of the new SU! In Colors for 2008. I stamped the flourish stamp from Baroque Motifs in River Rock ink on the top and bottom 1/3 of the card. For the center strip I used the new coordinating Brocade Background designer series papers. The striped piece is 2" tall and the two floral strips are 3/4". Next I tied a piece of taupe grosgrain ribbon in between the floral strips. For the focal medallion, I stamped the square piece in olive ink and the flower in Versamark and embossed in gold. They were both painstakingly cut out from the vanilla cs using my paper snips - my hands were sore after 12 of each! LOL! Both pieces are popped up on dimensionals for a very 3-D effect. Finally, I stamped the cherish sentiment in the bottom right corner in Versamark and embossed it in gold. I really like the way the gold ep looks with these colors, and the taupe ribbon seemed to fit right in. Wish me luck as I attempt to finish at least one more group of cards today! *wink*

Beate's Sketch Revisited . . .

I enjoyed Beate's sketch for this weekend so much that I decided to give it another try. I wanted to try out the color combination of Groovy Guava and Chocolate Chip for this card. I started with a chocolate card base and folded it to the specifications. I cut two guava panels and stamped them in chocolate ink with the flourish image from my new Baroque Motifs set. Then I sponged the edges in chocolate ink and adhered them to the card base. Next I stamped the square medallion image in chocolate ink on Chocolate Chip cs and cut it out. I also stamped the large flower image in chocolate ink on guava cs, cut it out, and attached it to the chocolate medallion using an antique brass brad. I decided to use a piece of my chocolate twill tape from the Martha Stewart collection as a closure for the card, and I used a buckle from my hodgepodge hardware tin as well. On the inside of the card is a guava square, on which I stamped a border using the small flower image and sponged the edges in chocolate ink. The medallion is attached on the left side with dimensionals. The flap of the twill tucks behind the medallion, and allows the card to open easily. I am really loving this set so far! Seems as though you can't go wrong, whatever you do!!!

Cherish New Rubbah . . .

Whoo hoo!!! My new SU! goodies have arrived!!! *giddies* I set to work right away working on my swap cards that are due a week from today. I need to get those in the mail on Monday, but I really wanted to use one of my new sets. For the layout, I was inspired by Beate's sketch challenge for this weekend, gate fold cards, as posted on her blog. Follow the link at right to get all the details! I started by cutting and folding the Not Quite Navy card base. Next I cut down some squares of Soft Sky cs and stamped them in sky ink using the large flourish image from one of my new sets, Baroque Motifs. I cut the square down the center and adhered the panels to the card base. For the main image, I chose a 2 1/2" square of Night of Navy cs, and matted it with a 2 1/4" square of shimmery white cs, which I notched the corners of using my 1/4" circle punch to create a faux ticket corner design. I stamped the flower seal image in Not Quite Navy ink on Soft Sky cs, and it out using my paper snips. I adhered it to the square using a silver brad. Next I stamped the "cherish" sentiment in Not Quite Navy ink in the bottom right corner. As a finishing touch I added a closure tie using some silver cord. I think this would make a cute wedding card! I can't wait to get some more play time with my new rubbah, but it will probably be Monday before I have anything new to share. Check back then to see more sneak peeks of the upcoming SU! Fall/Winter Collection! *wink*

Another heartwarming Blogger RAK . . .

This little beauty is from Diane over at My Little Stampin' Spot. Head on over and take a peek at all the lovely creations Diane has to share! For this card she used the Bodacious Bouquet, Aida Cloth, and All Year Cheer I stamp sets for this card. Colors of cardstock are Chocolate Chip, Cool Caribbean, and Whisper White. The strip of patterned paper is from the Friends & Flowers hostess Simply Scrappin' Kit. Colors of ink are Cool Caribbean, Chocolate Chip, and Certainly Celery. Diane also used some chocolate grosgrain ribbon, dimensionals and yellow stickles to complete the card! Thanks again, Diane! I *love* it!!!

Happy Chic . . .

Well, I spent most of today out shopping. My hubby had the morning off from work, so we decided to head out to the nearest urban area (seeing as we live in the middle of nowhere), and just relax a little. We went to Michaels, Target, Best Buy, Barnes & Noble, and the mall! *phews* Now that I am home I wanted to truly relax, so I used some of the new papers I purchased today to create another card for this week's sketch challenge over at SCS. I started by cutting down the Boho Chic patterned paper by We R Memory Keepers to fit the sketch. I adhered the striped paper onto the Chocolate Chip card base and matter the funky flowers onto a piece of Really Rust cs. I notched the corners of the flower paper using my 1/4" circle punch to create a faux ticket corner look, and added some aged copper brads. This panel is popped up on dimensionals. Next I cut a narrow strip of the striped paper and stamped "happy" from Happy Everything across it in chocolate ink and attached it with two aged copper brads. Fairly quick and simple, but again, I like the look! Tomorrow my new SU! goodies are slated to arrive, so stay tuned!!! *wink*

Sweet RAK attack . . .

Beate and I seem to have this little game of RAK attack going on. I'm not sure which one of us started it, but it sure is fun! Las week I was admiring this card over on Beate's blog, fresh & fun, which I must admit that I check multiple times daily!!! It seems as though Beate always has something new to share with us! If I remember correctly, Lori sent Beate and a few other talented stamper friends these Whipper Snapper bird images, designed by none other than SweetMissDaisy herself - Anna Wight! Beate colored the image using her Copic markers, which I love the effect of but *totally* cannot afford! The full set of those babies is over $500!!! *shock* I would buy a few singly, but I have no idea which colors would be best for me. My other favorite feature on this card id the faux stitching Beate did using the All in a Row stamp set by SU! She has single-handedly assured that this set will be on my July 1st birthday order!!! Thanks so much for sending me another true beauty, Beate! We are going to take a little hiatus while Beate is on vacation, but I'll be ready to pounce with another one when she returns! *wink*

Feelin' Sketchy . . .

Ugh! I feel as thought I *may* be coming down with a slight cold . . . again!!! It would certainly explain my lack of mojo lately. Well, that and the fact that whenever I have new rubbah' on the way I never want to play with anything I already have I am currently awaiting my goodies from SU!'s Fall/Winter Collection Preview. I have been not-so-patiently looking on as all my friends seem to be creating with their new toys already! *pout* Mine will be here Friday, so I'll just have to keep busy until then . . . So today is Sketch Challenge day over at SCS, and it is pretty simple and basic. Should've been easy for me, but no. I knew I wanted to use these beautimous papers by We R Memory Keepers from the Precious Metals - Vintage Brass collection. After matting the stripes on some olive Bazzil cs and the flowers on Sage Shadow cs, I tried adding a stamped image, to no avail. I am sad because I ruined one of the precious bee images Beate sent me. :( I thought about stamping on acetate across the center panel, but nothing really looked right. I settled on just adding this fancy "sweetness" snap, which just happens to coordinate perfectly with the papers. Go figure, since it is made by the same company and is also labeled Vintage Brass - lol! ;) In the end, I think it turned out fine, even if there was no stamping involved. *wink*

Sweet SCS Blogger Rak

I received this card in the mail the other day from Debbie Fischer, otherwise known as debbiedee! Besides being a fabulously talented stamper, Debbie is a member of the Splitcoaststampers Blogger RAK Club. Head on over to her blog, Snickerdoodle Dreams (how cute is that?), to check out more of Debbie's beautiful creations! This card had me gasping when I opened it, and immediately cursing the day I decided to trade away my Paint Prints stamp set. This card is just breathtaking, isn't it? I especially love the earthy colors and the distressed look of the card. But I think my favorite part is the large tabs Debbie created using a distressed rectangle block stamp. Pure paper genius!!! Thanks so much for thinking of me, Debbie! You are so sweet!

Are you a Technique Lover???

I know I am! I am always in search of new techniques I can learn to beef up my stampin' skills! Well, Monday is the day to do just that!!! Head on over to Splitcoaststampers to try out this week's Technique Lover's Challenge - Origami Shirts! I had seen one of these at a friend's house and I prompty stated, "I can't do that." Well, turns out that with a little time and the proper guidance - I can do it!!! *grin* I thought this would be perfect for making all those Father's Day cards I have been dreading. I am no good at making masculine cards! I followed the instructions using a piece of Sentimental Journey designer series paper. When I first got this paper my husband John saw it and thought it would make a nice shirt! Well, here it is and although it is probably not what he meant, I hope he and the other fathers in my life like it! After folding the shirt I added some aged copper brads for buttons. Then I started with a Sahara Sand card base and stamped it all over using sahara ink and stamps from the Office Accoutrement and Stamp of Authenticity sets to create my own background. Next I stamped the library pocket from Stamp of Authenticity in chocolate ink on Very Vanilla cs. I added the "Happy Father's Day" sentiment from All Year Cheer II in Buckaroo Blue ink, and the "for you" (from Happy Everything) and "dearest dad" (from Fancy Flexible Phrases) in Cranberry Crisp ink. I matted the card onto buckaroo cs and adhered everything to the card base. Finally, I added some pieces of cranberry stitched grosgrain ribbon in two of the corners. Go ahead, try a new technique! *wink*

A Quick Sketch . . .

I have been wanting to participate in Beate's weekly Sketch Challenges over at fresh & fun for a few weeks now, but unfortunately my busy schedule (I work weekends) has kept me from being able to. So image my surprise and excitement when I saw that this weekend's challenge had already been posted!!!!! And, since I already had this little puppy image stamped (in brown StazOn) and partially watercolored (with wwc's and aquapainter) from earlier today, it was perfect timing! I punched out the Patient Puppy by Whipper Snapper Designs on vanilla cs with my mega scalloped circle punch and pierced the scallops using my 1/16" punch. I decided to use a strip of caribbean patterned paper from the Paisleys & Petals collection, so I colored the puppy's collar caribbean as well. I matted the ds paper onto Chocolate Chip cs, which I adhered to the Creamy Caramel card base. I added some aged copper brads and popped up the main image on dimensionals. I added the "i miss you" sentiment (from All Year Cheer II) in chocolate ink and stuck the tab under the strip of ds paper. This is going to a good friend of mine who just happens to be a dog lover too! *wink*