Saturday, December 20, 2014

Full Speed Ahead!

Who else out there is frantically crafting in preparation of the big day on Thursday? I swore this year that I would get stuff done ahead of time to make this week a little easier. Didn't happen! But, as with anything, I have a plan in place to pace myself a bit. A little bit every day makes things doable. My list today is wine tags for the bottles of wine we bought for the staff at my husband's office, Christmas cards addressed and sent, four packages in the mail, and two more stitched ornaments done (all cut out this is easy and enjoyable). Plus a trip to Walmart and Hobby Lobby after 7 tonight (hopefully the crowds will have died down) for the last minute stuff....and cocktails at a bar afterward as a reward.  I can do it! And so can you. Keep chugging along folks.

Here's a project that I'm giving to close friends. I'll be popping these in mailboxes on Monday. I have a Phone Case Die stitched out of paper to hold an ornament made from the Stitched Frame and the Stitched Ornament Hanger. And I also cut a CD holder out on my Silhouette and put a fun holiday music play list on a CD so there is some fresh tunes for the last few days. Both are embellished with Songbird Dies and the sentiment is from Season's Greetings.

I adore making and giving these ornaments (Stitched Frame, Stitched Ornament Hanger, Stitched Years).  I think it is very tricky to do something nice for somebody that is meaningful, but doesn't make them feel obligated to give you a gift back. You know what I'm saying? It's a bit of a cycle.  I don't want to add to anybody's to-do list. Hoping this gift strikes that balance.

I got (happily) recruited this year to take holiday photos for several families. Helps out with projects like these. And I'll be on the lookout in the coming year when I'm spending time with friends and family to take photos with this project in mind for next year's gift giving. It will be a nice surprise when Christmas 2015 rolls around.

As for the celebration and traditions that are happening right along with the crafting, I thought I'd share a little something that happens every year in the small town I live in...Santa riding around all the neighborhoods on top of a fire engine. How great is this? We had our visit last night. Such a sweet and simple way to put smiles on the faces all over town. :)

I hope you are experiencing some of the magic the season has to offer:).

Friday, December 19, 2014

Paper Smooches Love

Man, do I have some projects to share with you today. In the midst of all the holiday craziness, I managed to get a little zen crafting time.:)

This project uses Lovely Thoughts. I opted to color my roses with markers instead of the two-step stamps included. Nice that you have both options. Quite a fan of these roses!

I masked off a Fancy Frames (you get this set free this month with a $60 purchase in the store) and stamped a floral cluster from Blossoming Buds all around it. Butterflies from Flap Happy add a little whimsy.

Lots of Love. The overlapping " I love you" begged to be colored. I have a little bee from the set carrying love between two flowers from Daisy and Paisleys.

Roses Dies were used to create this lovely focal point. I cut the die four times and glued the pieces together for a dimensional look. The banner is cut from the Streamers Dies and stamped with Blissful Banners.

Squared Frame die was cut down to create this smaller focal point and I used the new Love & Cherish Dies for both the "love" die cut and the hearts. Very easy card.

This is the Welcome Wagon stamp set for the "neighborhood" and "welcome" stamps. You can see, I took the name of the stamp set literally and put a little house (Bitty Bungalows)  in a wagon. (Knick Knacks).

I used the Pattern 1 embossing strips here in the openings created by the Stitched Frames Dies. A perfect fit.  Large Snowflakes Dies and the Christmas Words 2 Dies add some more die cutting fun to the front.

Whew! That's a lot! But this time of year, it is go big or go home right? Speaking of which, right back to the salt mines for me. Got to keep working away at that holiday to-do list:). Hang tight if you are in the same boat. It's only a week away, right?:)

Monday, December 15, 2014

December freebie set, Pretty Petals

Surprise! There's an extra holiday treat for you this month if you are ordering from Papertrey Ink. All the details can be found at Nichole's blog.

Here is my project using the new Pretty Petals freebie.

I stamped my flowers in Hawaiian Shores and Tropical Teal. In the open spaces I used little flicks with my Copics to add the coordinating color. "Love" is from Love Notes and "you always" is from Wet Paint III.

Photo Credit

The use of  the Travel Plans frame had some inspiration. ( Isn't this a pretty piece? ) I found by stamping the frame and then die cutting the middle out with the Simply Framed die, you got a narrower border. Good to note for the future!

Happy Shopping!

Stamps: Pretty Petals, Travel Plans, Love Notes, Wet Paint III
Ink: True Black, Tropical Teal, Hawaiian Shores, Winter Wisteria
Dies: Simply Framed
Cardstock: Stamper's Select White, Winter Wisteria

Release in Review

Here we are, back to wrap up the December Release with the rest of my projects. All new products will be available tonight to purchase at The store goes live at 10 PM EST.

On to my projects....

Drips & Dribbles, Keep It Simple: Valentine's Day, and Type Strips II. I wrote up a separate blog post for this project because it has several photos. Click on over to see what is inside these stitched up paper Coin Purses:).

Hello There: A sweet, simple card in pastel rainbow tones. Berry Sorbet for "red" and Melon Berry for "orange" give it a soft touch.

Birthday Classics: January and Tinsel & Tags House Additions: These are natural companions for each other. Nice to use bright colors in the dead of winter to bring some much needed cheer. I used Background Basics: Striped Sweater to make things EXTRA cozy.

Little Human and Type Strips II: Because I know a thing or two about buying Gymboree t-shirts with robots on them. :) The uneven coverage of the embossing powder works to my advantage here, because a well worn and washed t-shirt has the same look.

Give Me a Hand: I felt that this stamp set by Lexi was the "must have hit" of the release.  :) So very useful. Those hands can be used in so many different ways. Here, I have somebody carrying a tall stack of presents (Make A Wish stamp set) from to a party.

Phrase Play #11: A fun birthday card. The "hip hip" part of the die cut was colored with Copics in situ. Never ever removed from the cut. Surprisingly easy to do.  Birthday Style adds some festive balloons to my card.

Block Party: Oh man, what a clever set. I love it. Reflects early childhood so very well. I made this piece of wall art to match Sully's Big Boy Room. When I get around to changing it over from the nursery, that is. Poor kid still has girl prints up on the wall left over from the previous occupant. The curse of the third child.:)

I photographed this with his new quilt. It's a spot on match and I couldn't be happier with how it turned out.

Little kids like to build. And then put Hot Wheels all over their creations. Or, at least, that's what happens around here. I used Boy Basics: Truckin' It to add in cars to my creation. This is so very much my Sully Bear.

Thanks for joining us this month! Hope all your holiday crafting is coming around nicely.

More release projects below:

Betsy Veldman
Dawn McVey
Maile Belles
Heather Nichols
Melissa Phillips
Danielle Flanders
Laura Bassen
Laurie Willison
Ashley Cannon Newell


Coffee Cozy Wraps
Stamps: Type Strips II, Drips & Dribbles, Keep It Simple: 
Valentine's Day, Scentimentals 
Dies: Type Strips, Tag Sale #5, Coin Purse, Coffee Cozy, Coffee 
Cozy Detail Dies, Mini Blooms, Bitty Button Stacks, Zipper 
Border, Stitched Holiday Words Cardstock: Classic Kraft, Stamper's Select White, Pure Poppy, Hibiscus Burst
Ink: Classic Kraft, True Black, Hibiscus Burst, Pure Poppy, Dark Chocolate
Felt: Pure Poppy, Hibiscus Burst, Harvest Gold, Spring Moss, 
Vintage Cream

Hello There
Stamps: Hello There
Dies: Hello There, Clouds, Sunrise Impression Plate 2
Cardstock: Stamper's Select White, Winter Wisteria, Aqua Mist, Harvest Gold,Soft Stone
Ink: Berry Sorbet, Melon Berry, Harvest Gold, Simply Chartreuse, Aqua Mist, Winter Wisteria
Harvest Gold Button

Birthday Classics
Stamps: Tinsel & Tags House Additions, Birthday Classics: January, BB: Striped Sweater
Dies: Monthly Moments: December
Cardstock: True Black, Stamper's Select White, Hibiscus Burst, Blueberry Sky, Berry Sorbet, Simply Chartreuse Ink: Hibiscus Burst, Blueberry Sky, Berry Sorbet, Simply Chartreuse, True Black

Little Human
Stamps: Little Human, Type Strips 2, Love You To Pieces: Plane
Dies: Type Strips, Shape Up: Sweater, Love Lives Here
Soft Stone Patterned Paper
Cardstock: Enchanted Evening, Blueberry Sky, Stamper's Select White, Pure Poppy

Give Me a Hand
Stamps: Give Me a Hand, Make a Wish, No Strings Attached, Keep It 
Simple: Birthday, Tiny Tags I
Dies: Give Me a Hand, Bitty Button Stackers, Pack Your Bags, Pinking Sheer Edge
Ink: Royal Purple, Fine Linen, Winter Wisteria, Soft Stone,  True Black 
Cardstock: Spring Rain, Stamper's Select White, Blueberry Sky

Phrase Play #11
Stamps: Phrase Play #11, Birthday Style
Dies: Phrase Play #11, Birthday Style
Cardstock: Smokey Shadow, Stamper's Select White
Ink: Berry Sorbet, Hibiscus Burst, Winter Wisteria, Simply Chartreuse, Summer Sunrise
Aqua Mist Bitty Dot Patterned Paper

Sully's Wall Art
Stamps: Block Play, Boy Basics: Truckin' It
Dies: Truckin' It, Block Alphabet Uppers, Double Ended Banner
Ink: True Black, Enchanted Evening and Classic Kraft
Cardstock: Simply Chartreuse, Stamper's Select White
Enchanted Evening Gingham Paper

Valentine's Coffee Cozy Wraps

I took the opportunity with the February Release at Papertrey Ink to get my teacher Valentine's Day presents done while I was completing my assignments. Two birds, one stone and all that.  I laugh, because I haven't done anything for teacher Christmas gifts yet, but I'm fully prepared for a holiday that is nine weeks away! Go figure:).

The coffee cozies and the packaging I made needed several photos to tell the tale. Too many to fit into a regular release post, so I decided to type it all up separately here. .

Basically, I took two Classic Kraft cardstock cuts of the Coin Purse Die and made them envelopes to hold a Valentine's Day treat. I used lots of December stamps on this project. You've got the Drips & Dribbles to reinforce the coffee theme. I pulled Scenta-mentals  (previously released) from my collection for the three step coffee cup and stamped it on Tag Sale #5 along with the matching sentiment. The more color the better.

I used Keep It Simple: Valentine's Day and the Type Strips II with matching Type Strip Die along the bottom edge to spell out the teacher's name.

On the backside, I used a partial die cut technique to add a paper zipper using the Zipper Border Die. I need to stamp the "pull here" from Movers & Shakers Sentiments. Forgot that part!

Once the zipper is pulled, you gain access to the contents. Is this case, a Valentine's Day Coffee Cozy and a gift card to Dunkin' Donuts.

And just for fun, a pretty shot of the four coffee cozies I made. The "love" is from Stitched Holiday Words. Mini Bloom Dies, Bitty Button Stacks, and Coffee Cozy Detail Dies make up the rest of the embellishment.

Really a fun project. I found that stitching up the paper Coin Purse Dies to make a wrap took little time at all. The single running stitch helped with that...and it looks so pretty! Hope you are inspired to try this yourself. Lots of love in one little package.

Coffee Cozy Wraps
Stamps: Type Strips II, Drips & Dribbles, Keep It Simple: Valentine's Day, Scentimentals 
Dies: Type Strips, Tag Sale #5, Coin Purse, Coffee Cozy, Coffee Cozy Detail Dies, Mini Blooms, Bitty Button Stacks, Zipper Border, Stitched Holiday Words
Cardstock: Classic Kraft, Stamper's Select White, Pure Poppy, Hibiscus Burst
Ink: Classic Kraft, True Black, Hibiscus Burst, Pure Poppy, Dark Chocolate
Felt: Pure Poppy, Hibiscus Burst, Harvest Gold, Spring Moss, Vintage Cream

Sunday, December 14, 2014

Introducing Love You To Pieces

If you've made your way to my blog today, here at Day 5 of the Papertrey Ink Countdown, you already know that what I've got to show you is ABSOLUTELY amazing. I would even say groundbreaking without feeling like I'm venturing into the territory of the over exaggerated. And we've got Betsy to thank for it. Who else?  I tip my hat at you Bets! Well done.

For Valentine's this year, we've got the Love You To Pieces Collection. We've got dies and stamps to create a 3D fox or plane out of coaster board, paper pads to wrap it all up in, and and ideas to make coordinating cards. It's a dozy! Wowza.

Here's one of my two ensembles. I've got the 3D fox, a mini-card, and a decorated envelope.

For both the fox (girl version) and the plane (boy version), a printed paper pad is available to purchase. You cut the envelope design, fold it up, and you've got this cleverly printed square envelope that perfectly holds the coaster board (that is die cut with your 3D project).  I've decorated my envelope with a matching fox (Love You To Pieces: Fox) and sentiment (Love You To Pieces Additions).

And here's little foxy herself. This is a special die that cuts all her pieces out of coaster board. And the Love You to Pieces: Fox Collection has stamps to add the details. I sponged my coaster board with Summer Sunrise ink to give her an all over orange complexion.

 The inside of my mini-card created with the Monthly Moments: Journal Card 1 Die (cut to make a card with a fold in the top). I've decorated it with stamps from Love You To Pieces: Fox and the Love You To Pieces Additions.

The envelope from my second ensemble stamped with the Headline Alphabet, Love You To Pieces: Fox, and the Love You To Pieces Additions. I used the new Envelope Zipper Die along bottom edge of the heart. This is how you access the contents.

The contents of the second ensemble with envelope zipper ripped open. You have a flat pink fox on coaster board all ready for assembly. Fits the envelope perfectly. And you have another card made from the Monthly Moments Journal Card 1. I stamped the dotted background with Simply Framed and filled in the holes from a stamp from Love You To Pieces: Fox.

And the inside of that card. :)

So, blown away? I am. Still shaking my head in wonder. Awesome collection of paper crafting items. And they'll be available tomorrow night at 10 PM EST at  It's going to be a fun Valentine's.

More inspiration below:

Nichole Heady
Betsy Veldman
Dawn McVey
Maile Belles
Heather Nichols
Melissa Phillips
Danielle Flanders
Laura Bassen
Laurie Willison
Ashley Cannon Newell


Stamps: Love You To Pieces: Fox, Love You To Pieces Additions, Simply Framed, Headline Alphabet
Dies: Love You To Pieces Fox Collection, Envelope Zipper Die, Monthly Moments Jouranling Card 1
Ink: Hawaiian Shores, Raspberry Fizz, Hibiscus Burst, Pure Poppy, Aqua Mist, Summer Sunrise
Cardstock: Stamper's Select White
Love You To Pieces Girl Paper Pad

Saturday, December 13, 2014

Introducing Big Hugs

I know ya'll are excited to see the set we are featuring today for the December 2014 Papertrey Ink Countdown. It's all about hugs. Big, cozy, loving hugs. Of the papercrafting variety, of course. Because, if you think about it, that is what homemade cards *really* are anyway. They are a way to send a hug in the mail to those that you love when you can't be there. So it seems fitting that we can now label them as such.

You know...aren't we just finally calling a spade and spade?:) And in such a wonderful way.

What is so great about the Big Hugs Collection are that the five large stamps that say "hugs" in a variety of fonts are also offered as dies. So many options. This card uses a stamped "hugs" from the set and is completed with the rest of the sentiment. I layered it over the floral heart from the With All My Heart set. There was room on the heart stamp for the word "sending" so I could seamlessly use the two stamp sets together.

Here's a close up of all the details. A few things to note. The Harvest Gold strip of paper and the Simply Chartreuse scalloped border underneath are cut using the Hello There dies. Adore how easy this look is to create because these dies are cut to 4.25" in length. Also, the heart stamp you see here (from With All My Heart) has additional stamps to layer in a floral cluster in the design. I opted to do something different by die cutting various Button Stack dies instead. With so many size options in the button dies, I was able to fill the openings in the stamp rather well, allowing the leaves to show as intended.

Limitless Layers Hearts was cut into a Stitched Circle Dies for a inlaid die look. And BB: Diagonals gives some depth to the background.

Next up, I'm using a die cut "hugs" on my card design. When I think of hugs, I think of the words "cozy" and "comforting". With that thought, my word "hugs" and the Pure Poppy heart are cut out of PTI felt.

A quick tip for working with intricate die cuts made out of felt. Die cut a matching cut out of cardstock. Glue your felt cut to the paper cut, so you can maintain the shape a bit better. The paper cut will guide you.  This also makes it easier to glue the felt to your card or project.

And speaking of hugs, how about Lexie's Give Me a Hand set? Is it not the best way to wrap up the large heart created by Limitless Layers Heart Stitches? It looks like a hug! Fabulous.

That's it for me today. I hope you like this set as much as I do. Only a little bit longer to wait until you can get your hands on it. Big Hugs and the rest of the December release will be available on Monday night at 10 PM EST right here.

More hugs are to be seen. Just click below:

Nichole Heady
Betsy Veldman
Dawn McVey
Maile Belles
Heather Nichols
Melissa Phillips
Danielle Flanders
Laura Bassen
Laurie Willison
Ashley Cannon Newell


To Make Your Day Brighter
Stamps: Big Hugs, With All My Love, BB: Diagonals
Dies: Hello There, Button Stackers 1, 2, and 3, Stitched Circles, Limitless Layers: Hearts
Cardstock: Smokey Shadow, Soft Blush, Harvest Gold, Simply Chartreuse, Melon Berry, Stamper's Select White
Ink: Melon Berry, Simply Chartreuse
Harvest Gold Damask Patterned Paper

To Hold You Tight
Stamps: Big Hugs, Give Me a Hand, Hello Sunshine
Dies: Big Hugs, Give Me a Hand,  Limitless Layers Heart Stitches, Edgers #4
Cardstock: Sweet Blush, Hibiscus Burst, Stamper's Select Whtie
Ink: True Black and Fine Linen
Patterned Paper: Aqua Mist Gingham, Hibiscus Burst Polka Dot
Felt: Pure Poppy, True Black