Stretching the Stamping Budget

Of course, sometimes you just NEED a certain stamp- it may speak to your other hobbies, or remind you of a certain person, or have sentiments you love.  As a hobbyist, those were often the deciding factors when I bought stamps. Now, however, as a demonstrator I have to consider other things as well.  Does it have broad enough interest to please class members? Can it be used in multiple ways so that I can use it for more than one class? Does it have sentiments that are flexible for use with several occasions? I recently used those criteria to choose some new stamp sets.  Here are the sets I bought:


First is Perennial Birthday.  This is a simple but fun set that is clearly for birthdays, but has a number of flower and leaf stamps, as well as a couple of sentiments that could be used for other occasions- “today blooms just for you”, “wishing  you the best on your special day”, and “here’s to celebrating you”.  It’s also great for using the Stamparatus for the hinge-step technique to make multiple stamps in a linear pattern, like this:


Next is Seaside Notions- I think this set is VERY versatile!  It has great line drawings, and sentiments that say “here’s to you”, “with gratitude”, “happy birthday”, and “thinking of you”.  This fun bridge card is what I made:


I bought two other sets with the same criteria, Capture the Good, and Over the Moon:


I haven’t had time to play with them, but can you see that they might be used for several occasions, right?  If your stamp budget is unlimited, just buy what you love, but if you want sets that you can use  in different ways, keep these sets in mind!  The annual catalog is full of others, too, so browse around- you may find just what suits your needs. Thanks for stopping by!

Happy stamping,




Is It Wrong to Love My Embossing Folders?

I made three fairly simple cards for my class next week- not a lot of stamping or coloring, and no fancy folds- but I really like them anyway.  I was looking at them, trying to decide what made me choose them for the class, and realized that I really, really like the (dry) embossing on them. Take a look and tell me what you think.


The first card uses two embossing folders, one (Lace 3D) for the background in Whisper White adhered to a matching card base, and the other (Subtle 3D) in Blushing Bride for the “ribbon” effect. A few embossed leaves, a butterfly (snipped from the multiple butterflies in Butterfly Beauty die set), and a word from the Well Written dies makes a happy card for just about anything you want to celebrate!


Next up is another multi- purpose card- it could be for a birthday, thinking of you, or any special celebration.  It has an Early Espresso card base with a panel of Blushing Bride embossed with the Subtle 3D folder (you’ll see a pattern here, I love this folder!). Next is a panel of Early Espresso which has been cut and embossed in one step with  a die from the Lovely Flowers die set. Add your sentiment, this one is from the Forever Lovely stamp set, and cut a piece of light cardstock for the inside sentiment.

Lastly, a slightly more involved card, featuring- you guessed it, the Subtle 3D folder again.  This one uses one of my favorite stamp sets from the new Annual Catalog, Bird Ballad.


Over a Basic Black card base, I used the Crackle Paint background stamp in Soft Suede ink on Very Vanilla cardstock.  Next I made a frame from Soft Suede cardstock using two adjacent sizes of the Stitched Rectangles die set, and used the smaller rectangle of the two to cut the piece with the birds, which are stamped in Memento Black ink on Crumb Cake cardstock.  I then textured the stamped image with the Subtle 3D folder.  I think it looks like fabric! The cool hexagon stitched label is from the Stitched Nested Labels die set.

I hope you’re inspired to try some embossing folders in your papercrafting- I really do think they bump a project up to the next level.  I’ve embossed and die cut using my (very old) Big Shot embossing machine, but I am excited to tell you that Stampin’ Up! is soon going to be offering a new embossing alternative.  I am waiting with you to find out what they have in store!  They did such a great job upgrading from the available stamping platforms when they came out with the Stamparatus, I feel sure the new offering will be special.  Hmm, Stamparatus… that gives me an idea for my next class!

Happy stamping,


I am an Independent Demonstrator for Stampin’ Up!, and the products I mention above are all available in my online store.  If you are interested in purchasing items, or just want to browse, please click the VISIT MY SITE button.  If you have any questions or thoughts, please leave a comment!

A New Stamping Adventure (for me!)

I’m back from my trip to France, and facing a whirlwind of activity!  Recently I was invited to participate in a Stampin’ Up! demonstrators group to swap ATCs- Artist Trading Cards- which are 3.5x 2.5 inch little cards intended only for trading, never for sale.  While they are done in a variety of media, this group wanted to highlight our products and trade ideas for their use.  I decided to use one of my favorite stamps, Beauty Abounds, and to document my process.  If you are not familiar with ATCs, do a Pinterest or internet search- the results are amazing! Here is the final product:

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First, I made my own pretty paper by stamping the same stamp in Pool Party all over Whisper White cardstock, turning the stamp so it would face different directions.

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Next, I cut that paper into pieces that were 3.25 x 2.25 inches, stamped a flourish, greeting, and “splatters” on each piece, and mounted them with Tombow Multi Glue on 3.5 x 2.5 inch bases of Pool Party cardstock.

I only needed one small part of the butterfly diecut, so I positioned it accordingly, and cut it with my Big Shot diecutting machine (I used my Take Your Pick Tool to get the tiny bits out!).  Then, I trimmed the butterfly and hand cut pieces of vellum to glue to the back of the butterfly. I held them up to the light to check placement!

Finally, I use mini-dimensionals, cut it half, to adhere the butterfly to the card.  I positioned it slightly out of the white frame to give it some “movement”.

Of course, if you aren’t interested in swapping ATCs, you could still make similar cards and adhere them to the front of a plain folded card, or decorate the card with coordinating papers before adhering the ATC.  Give it a try!

Happy Stamping,


All items are available from Stampin’ Up! through my store.  Just click on View My Site above, and thanks for looking!


I’m so enjoying the visit with my family in France, and experiencing spring in a way I just can’t do in Florida!

I am looking forward to getting back to my desk, though, and working with some of the new supplies that will be arriving while I’m away. The Stampin’ Up! catalog year is ending June 3rd, and as a demonstrator I’m able to pre-order some things from the new catalog which goes live June 4th. Wait till you see what is coming!

Meanwhile, there are some beautiful things in the 2018-19 Annual Catalog and 2019 Occasions Catalog that are retiring for good, so if you are curious about those, click on Visit My Site above, and look for this logo:

There is also an online item that will only be offered during May- a complete product suite called Everything is Rosy. Check Pinterest for amazing samples using these products. It’s a lovely combination of pink and blue:

I’m looking forward to sharing some project ideas of my own when I get home in a couple of weeks. Thanks for dropping by, and happy stamping!


Long Distance Blogging

Of course, one can blog from anywhere, but right now I’m away from my usual cozy blogging chair in southwest Florida, visiting my daughter and her family in France! My French grandchildren are 9, 7, 5, and 3, so we’re having a lively time, and cardmaking is on the to-do list.

In the meanwhile, here is a card I made for my last class:

I used a combination of soon-to- be retired items (the Humming Along stamp set and cutting dies, and the lovely Petal Pink/ Whisper White variegated ribbon) and items that will continue into the next year (Petal Pink and Soft Seafoam cardstock, Petal Pink, Soft Seafoam and Gray Granite inks, and the oh-so-fabulous Crackle Paint background stamp). The doily was actually cut with a discontinued cutting die, but similar white doilies are in the catalog.

The base is Petal Pink cut to 8.5 by 5.5 inches, and scored and folded to 4,25 by 5.5. The Soft Seafoam is cut to 4 by 5,25 inches, and stamped with the Crackle Paint stamp in Gray Granite, then lightly daubed with it on the corners using Sponge Daubers. Likewise, the flower was stamped in Gray Granite, cut out, and both flower and Doily were daubed as desired with the three inks. A small length of ribbon was folded and adhered with Tombow Multi glue behind the doily and Doily and flower were glued to the crackled layer. The sentiment was stamped in Gray on Soft Seafoam, cut with a die, and adhered with Stampin’Dimensionals to raise it up.

All products are available in my shop (click Visit My Site above to shop), and the retiring items will be unavailable after June 2nd. Thanks for stopping by to say “Bonjour”, and happy stamping!


Finishing the Catalog Year!

The new Annual Catalog for Stampin’ Up! goes live at the beginning of June, so I am busy using products from this year’s stash, and anxiously awaiting news of which items will carry over into the new catalog, and what new and exciting things will be offered!  In this project, I’m using my favorite Designer Series Paper (DSP) from last year’s catalog- the Share What You Love DSP. The florals and coordinating graphics are just so pretty!


The card is a simple Z-fold; the Basic Black cardstock was cut to 5.5 by 8.5 inches, and scored at 2 and 1/8 and 4 and 1/4 inches to make the A-fold- first fold in half as usual, then fold the scored edge back and burnish the creases with the bone folder.  Choose your favorite coordinating prints.  The front and inner left panels are 1 and 7/8 inches by 5 and 1/4 inches.  The larger inside panel is 4 x 5 and 1/4 inches.  Then I used the largest  oval from the Stitched Shape diecuts, one in black and one in white, and the next largest one in white. On the smaller white oval, I stamped a flower from the Petal Palette stamp set, and “for you” from Beauty Abounds, and colored the leaves and flowers with Old Olive and Rich Razzleberry Stampin’ Write markers.  On the larger white oval I stamped Happy Birthday from a retired stamp set.


Center the large white oval on the inside and adhere.  After adhering the small white oval to the black oval matte, close the card, and apply adhesive only over the edge that will touch the front of the card.  Carefully center these ovals while the card is closed so that they cover the inner oval.  You could add other embellishments if you wish, but I let the pretty paper shine.

I hope this gives you some ideas for using your pretty papers- and, of course the card could be used for any occasion by changing out the Happy Birthday stamp.  Thanks for stopping by!

Happy stamping,


Faraway Friends

Over the years, I’ve lived in quite a few places.  I grew up in Buffalo, NY and after that lived in several places in New York and Pennsylvania until 9 years ago, when I left winter behind and moved to Florida.  I’m so happy here!  Unfortunately, moving from place to place means you also leave behind good friends and neighbors.  As a result, I use a lot of “thinking of you” cards for all kinds of occasions (or no occasion!). The card below is one such card- the color scheme puts me in mind of Lily Pulitzer colors.  It was inspired by one of our beautiful designer papers from this year’s annual Sale-A- Bration, but you can use any pretty paper as your jumping off place, and find three solid colors to coordinate.


The colors here are Granny Apple Green, Pool Party, and Flirty Flamingo.  I started with an 8.5 by 5.5 inch piece of green, scored and folded at 4.25 inches, and the blue and pink were 3 and 5/8 inches square and 3.5 inches square, respectively. The front of the green cardbase and the pink square were textured with the Subtle embossing folder using my Big Shot. I love the effect of this folder!


I used and 2.5 by 1.5 inch piece of designer paper for the banner, cut by hand, and a scrap of the same paper for the floral cutout. The flowers and green sprig dies are in the Petals and More Thinlits set, and the vellum leaves and pierced sentiment oval are from the Wonderful Floral Framelit dies. I used Pool Party ink to stamp the sentiment (from a discontinued stamp set), but I think next time I’ll also heat emboss it- always a work in progress! Attach the banner first, mat and attach the squares, and then add the flowers.


I adhered the floral spray with a small amount of glue dabbed (not swiped!) on with a sponge.  The leaves were attached with Tombow glue and the sentiment raised with dimensional foam.


I am an independent Stampin’Up! demonstrator. All products are from Stampin’Up! unless otherwise stated and are available for purchase from my online shop- click VISIT MY SITE  above. If you enjoy my blog, please follow me on my stamping journey!  Thanks for looking today, and (as always) I wish you happy stamping!


Not Just for Valentine’s Day

I was looking for a new stamp set for Valentine’s Day this year, and was captivated by the  Forever Lovely stamp set and coordinating Edgelit dies in Stampin’ Up!’s 2019 Occasions catalog.  While they did make perfectly lovely cards for that occasion, I’ve found I use the set for other cards as well.


This card has a birthday sentiment inside, but could just as easily be an all-occasion card, with get well or thinking of you sentiments (or just a personal note) inside.

I started with an 8.5x 5.5 inch piece of Lovely Lipstick cardstock, scored at 4.25 inches to make a card base of 5.5 by 4.25.  I cut a piece of Whisper White cardstock to 4×5.25 inches, and ran it through the Big Shot with the floral edgelit.  This cuts the piece in two, and I ran the bottom piece back through the Big Shot using the Subtle embossing folder.  It gives a really nice texture, like slubby silk.  Then I glued both pieces to the card front, fitting them back together,  stamped my sentiment in Lovely Lipstick ink, and punched both the sentiment and the “shadow” with the Pretty Label punch.  I was originally planning to cut the Lovely Lipstick label in half to make a “long label”, but decided I liked the look of it just on one end, as a shadow would be!  Another piece of Whisper White inside with your preferred sentiment, and you’re done!  Simple but elegant.

Thanks for stopping by!  If you want to follow my stamping adventure, please follow my blog.  All items used in the card above are available from my Stampin’Up! store page, and clicking VISIT MY SITE will get you there.

As always, happy stamping!


Hopping By!


I have a couple of classes coming up in the weeks before Easter, and wanted to include at least one Happy Easter (or Happy Spring, or just happy!) card.  This is one I came up with- I usually make up several prototypes before I decide on the cards we’ll make in class.  I think this one might be a keeper.

I love the Bunny Builder punch!  I decided not to stamp it with the Best Bunny stamps, but rather to have him looking out.  The card base is folded to 5.5×4.25, the Flirty Flamingo layer is 5.25×4 inches.  I cut the oval with the largest of the Stitched Shapes ovals, and embossed the layer with the Lace Dynamic Textured Impressions embossing folder.  The bunny is Crumb Cake with a Whisper White tail, with ink edging, the “grass” is from the Home to Roost stamp set (free with a $50 purchase during Sale-A-Bration, which ends March 31st), but you could use any type of grass you have.  I glued the bunny on, then stamped the grass in Pear Pizzazz, as I did the butterflies, on Pear Pizzazz cardstock.  The butterflies are from the Butterfly Gala stamp set, and coordinate with a fabulous Butterfly Duet Punch! A Pear Pizzazz ribbon, the larger butterfly raised with dimensionals, and it was done!

I hope you are inspired to share some spring joy!

Happy stamping!


** I’m an Independent Stampin’ Up! demonstrator, and I love to share stamping with my friends and customers.  If you are enjoying my blog, please follow Ready, Ink, Go!  If you are interested in purchasing any of the items used in this card, please click “VISIT MY SITE” above, which will direct you to my online shop for Stampin’ Up! supplies.  Thanks for looking!