Friday, December 31, 2010

A Wild and Crazy New Year's Eve

This is how it will go, according to my internal polling data.

Stamp and catch up on some computer things on my last day of vacation. Pay bills.

Have some blackeyed pea dip for luck.

Go to bed at 10.

If that was too much excitement for you, I apologize - that's how I roll!

I have to save all of my energy and squealing up for tomorrow, when the new Stampin' Up! challenge design team - the Creative Crew - is unveiled on Splitcoast! This group of fabby designers is going to head up monthly challenges in the SU Demonstrator forum, and WAIT till you see what the challenge gallery looks like!! SQUEEEEE!

I'll put up a home page story when we reveal it at noon CST tomorrow, so be sure and be hanging around Splitcoast if you've woken up from all your revelry! :)

In the downtime this week I've had a little fun with my owl punch, making gift card holders for some of my peeps.I folded a piece of Crumb Cake in half, and then put it just inside the bottom edge of the tag on my Two Tags die to make the holder - it's the perfect size!

Then I cut a piece of patterns pack DSP in Real Red for the backdrop for my Owlpenguin (idea from here).

So what are your exciting New Year's plans? Painting the town red? :)

I hope all of you have a safe and fun one, or an uneventful reading in your Snuggie™ one, or whatever you'd like most.

Loveyameanitbye. See you in 2011!

Saturday, December 25, 2010

A Blue Christmas...

Merry Christmas to each of you whose eyes rest here today!

I thought this year I'd deconstruct the Blue Christmas for you.

My favorite part of the creative process is designing, which takes place far from my teeny studio. It happens on walks, or with friends, or when I'm reading. You don't always know what goes into a card when you see it, and there's no better time than today to celebrate inspiration and design.

So here are all of the parts and pieces of my Christmas card this year.

Text, for the Christmas story - the greatest story ever told.

Music - a sacred joy of Christmas, and a powerful force for happiness and hope.

Peppermint - the most iconic, graphic and beautiful treat of the year.

And of course blue, so that I could give you a little piece of my heart.

Together, just a little paper wish for joy and peace.

I love making these cards. It's my favorite card of the year. For some of the people on my list, it's the only contact we have all year, and it's such fun to reconnect every December. I send 200 cards a year, give or take a few, so I usually start making them at Thanksgiving. Strange for a procrastinator, I know. :)

By the time I settle on a design, it has become the beginning of the holiday spirit for me each year, and it's just ... fun.

I took it apart this year so that you could see not just my deconstructed inspiration, but my deconstructed process. (Click picture for a closeup.) I added prices for all the consumables - I don't count costs for anything that isn't used up in the process.

You can see that adhesive is the most expensive part of the card, which - all in - cost 43 cents apiece.

Not too much for the greatest story ever told and a little piece of my heart. :)

Merry Christmas.

Thursday, December 23, 2010

So... If You Had

Just one Christmas wish, what would it be?Paper: Stampin' Up! First Edition, Very Vanilla, Basic Black Accessories: Tim Holtz Dies

Monday, December 20, 2010

The Bah Humbug Post

BWAHAH - fooled you!! I don't have a bah humbug bone in my body!

However, there does come a moment when you have to halt the Christmas preparations - the cookies, the preserves, the gifts, the lights, the yelling at people in traffic and shoving them on the baking aisle to get to the last can of sweetened condensed milk - and you have to make a birthday card.

So I dug out all my amazing pre-order goodies from the upcoming Occasions Mini Catalog and I made a birthday card for a friend.

The set is my fave from the mini cat - it's called Nature Walk. I have no more power to resist a set with a bird and speckledy eggs than I do butter or whipped cream.What's so superiffic about this little composition is the background, the left strip, the printed strip and the piece I stamped the eggs on are all from DSP from the new mini. The papers are AMAZING. The colored ones are from a package called Botanical Gazette, and the print, which I will buy a metric ton of, is called First Edition.

So the end result of this papery spiffiness is that this is a very quick card! All I had to do was add a little color to my birdie with a blender pen, and stamp the greeting.

BAM! There's your un-bah humbug birthday card!!

Now you may return to your regularly scheduled Christmas crazies! :)

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Reindeer Food

Look. As a person whose animals eat all of the following:

  • dryer sheets
  • ribbon
  • packing tape
  • styrofoam peanuts
  • pumpkin from the can
  • raw spaghetti
  • lint
  • embossing powder
  • cardstock
I would never advocate giving an improper food to a pet. Really - let them steal it and run under the bed with it like mine do. I think it tastes better under the bed.

No, seriously. I will really be serious.

Do NOT feed your pet reindeer this delicious Ghirardelli peppermint bark/dark chocolate combo that just happens to coordinate perfectly with your papercrafty Christmasy project that you did for your Splitcoast Shoebox Swap.


I don't think reindeer are supposed to have peppermint bark.

I have nothing to back this up - it's just a feeling.

What you SHOULD do with said peppermint bark is what I did though.

Step one: see THIS gorgeous creation on Splitcoast.
Step Two: Cut a petal card with your Big Shot Die from Tempting Turquoise.
Step Three: Stamp in black the wreath from Welcome Christmas on white cardstock and punch with this punch.
Step Four: Tie three sides closed with twine.
Step Five: Accent wreath with glitter and glue.
Step Six: Punch out a Martha Stewart teeny deer from Tempting Turquoise and pop him in the middle.

Add candy if you're not giving this to a reindeer. :)

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Come On Baby Light My Fire...

Well thank goodness Jim Morrison got pardoned this week. I'm very happy that our government is hard at work pardoning dead musicians. That sort of keeps them out of our hair while we craft and get through the holidays.

I adored The Doors. I loved Jim's spooky boomy voice and some of his creepier lyrics. I also love all musicians - Elvis, Buddy Holly, John Lennon and Jim Morrison - about whose deaths conspiracy theories abound. There's just nothing like walking down the street behind someone whom you firmly believe is Elvis. Or who really IS Elvis.

Chew on THAT. Mm hmm.

Well anyway, since old Jim was on my mind this week, I could not resist a fiery craft for my stamping class yesterday.

I got the idea from this great project on Splitcoaststampers. Brilliant. Literally :)

I decided to make my little set with the matchbox die to hold just one candle. The box base is Crumb Cake, and the sleeve is Deck the Halls DSP. The crown is from Artistic Etchings, and I used silver tinsel trim around the box, and a little rhinestone.
I made my votives by stamping the medallion from Artistic Etchings in Cherry Cobbler on white tissue paper. Then I sandwiched the tissue between sheets of copy paper before punching out a circle - 1.25" or 1 3/8" is fine. Then you punch a hole in the center of this tissue circle with a 1/16" circle punch. Slip that down over the wick, and heat the top of the candle with your heat gun until the tissue has been soaked by the wax. Do not hold the candle while you heat it - that little aluminum cup gets hot!

Then run some sticky strip around the side and add some of that fabby silver vintage glass glitter. Squish it into the tape with your finger.

Very fun, quick little holiday goodie for someone on your list.

Then, I had more 3D fun this weekend with a creation for Project Reanimate, which I have been neglecting.

To see what amazing household object I have reanimated with the help of my ADORABLE little Juniper Elf from the Starving Artistamps holiday release - head on over to this post for all the deets!

What are you cooking up for little gifties? You don't want to be unprepared if Elvis pops over for S'mores, you know.

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Ollie Does New York

My dear friend Libby mentioned New York today, so I thought I'd post this little ditty I made up when my friend Ollie the Octopus decided to hit the Big Apple.

He took one of my favorite paint chips EVER with him - I can't even believe I stopped hoarding this and used it on a card - and he used some Basic Grey Wander paper for a map. He's sitting on the notepaper pattern from the Basic Grey Whites collection that I cut with an eyelet Nestie. What you CAN'T see in this pic is his glisteny octopusivity that I created by covering him with Crystal Effects after I colored him with a Copic.

Maybe Ollie (who is one of a zillion adorable images from PaperWorks Co.) came to mind today because I am feeling a wee bit underwater... Anyone wanna throw me a paint chip? :)

Hope the ramp up to the holidays is going well for all of you beloveds! Who is going to Leadership with me? If you're not, I'll give you the live feed right here! :)

Have you signed up for the UBlue Cyber Club? Attended one of my Webinars?? Come on - get your geek on! :) Want to see my other blog?

Friday, December 3, 2010


I've always loved advent calendars because of all the suspense of opening teeny doors every day until Christmas. They were the perfect combination of mystery and surprise, and they were so elaborate and fun when I was a kid.

Despite that life long love, I've never really found one that I wanted to make until now. And ACK! I had so much fun making this. You should have heard all the giggling and snorting going on in here during this project!

Beate sent me a link to the lady that invented this amazing advent calendar tutorial, and I couldn't wait to make it. I knew EXACTLY what I wanted to use too, since I just got my uber fabulous Doodle Factory 'Tis the Season stamps and was dying to ink them up. I feel like stamping the little elf from this set on all that I survey!!

So without further ado - TA DA!!!!!!!!!!!!! The coolest Advent calendar ever!

Here's the basic creation before I added stamped images. It's 24 Real Red matchboxes, in alternating directions, with Candy Cane DSP accents and brads for drawer pulls. SQUEEE!!!

Here's a view of the top, stamped with 'Tis the Season on a Top Note die cut. And here are the four sides, aft er my stamped images were added.
It's just the picture that's wonky below, not the box :)

The Stampin' Up!/Sizzix Matchbox die got a workout, because the calendar takes 24 little matchboxes for the drawers. The Doodle Factory images are colored with Copics and I added Dazzling Diamonds Glitter. The greetings from this set are layered onto the little tag shapes that got punched out when I cut the matchboxes. I used my white gel pen on all the little drawers.

Once you have the drawers assembled, it really goes pretty fast. Cutting the matchboxes and assembling them is the most time consuming part, but it's not hard. It will take a full package of cardstock though - 24 sheets - plus your DSP for accents.

But I'm not sure I've ever had more fun making a 3D project in my life. I just love it! :)

Whaddaya think?
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