109 posts categorized "Summer"


Thu 25

Sheer Circle Wreath, Little Dragonflies and Dazzling Dragonfly
by Jean Okimoto


Wondering how to use the new Sheer Circle Wreath in May?  Don't wait till the holidays - it's a great backdrop for the Dazzling Dragonfly on a summer card.  Diecut circles and rings create an artsy background or accent for any occasion.  Try it with butterflies, birds or your favorite design from Fish Tales.  And with snowflakes in December!

Hello, Jean Okimoto here - with congrats to all of the May Blog Blitz winners - enjoy your prize!  


Sheer Circle Wreath is great for diecutting soft,  textured papers - like marbled paper from Shizen Design.  The swirly waves of metallic inks form little coves and corners for the wreath.  Cut the wreath first, then trim the paper with the Rectangle Basics die.  

Cut Dazzling Dragonfly from Rose Gold mirror cardstock.  Assemble it - with the wings beneath the body instead of above it,  for a different look.  Cut Little Dragonflies from Rose Gold mirror cardstock too.  

Score, cut and fold a 5-1/2" square cream card.  Stamp the greeting - from the new Open Studio Thank You Sentiments Clear Stamp Set - with Distress Oxide Broken China.  Love how the versatile stamp set lets you create the perfect "corner" to complement the rectangle.  Dry the ink, then assemble your quick card.


Join us for another SUMMER HEARTS class at Impress on Memorial Day - Monday, May 29th.  We have so many great heart designs in our stash...let's use them throughout the year, not just in February.  

Thanks for visiting - hope you liked this simple design.  Diecutting special artpapers with Memory Box, Open Studio and Poppystamps dies produces great results - they cut right through the fibers, metallic inks and textures of handmade papers.  Pull those treasured papers from your stash and give it a try!





Fri 19

You're my Anchor
by Donna

Happy Friday everyone!

Today I have a cute summer card featuring a few new stamp sets from the May release.  There are so many cute images that it makes it hard to figure out which ones I wanted to use.

Boat 3

To make this card, I started with a piece of watercolor cardstock and stamped the waves using Blueprint Sketch distress ink.  With clear water and a paint brush, I brushed over the waves to activate the ink and give a watercolor look to the waves. Next, I spattered the paper with the same Blueprint  Sketch ink and die cut a frame using the Octagon Layers dies. After that, I sponged the frame with Vintage Photo ink and glued it onto the card front.  I stamped the sun inside the frame and watercolored it; the boat, I stamped once on watercolor paper and once on a piece of washi tape and cut them both out.  I only needed to cut the bottom of the boat from the washi tape, and I adhered it to the watercolor paper boat.  

Boat 1

I stamped my sentiment and anchor using black ink and added a black marker line from the anchor to the boat.  To finish the card, I glued the card front to a Crimson cardstock layer and glued this to a white card base.

Boat 2

Thanks so much for stopping by today!  Have a great weekend!




Thu 11

May Release Blog Blitz – A Fish Tales Stamp Set Giveaway
by Jean Okimoto


Bright tropical colors and the new Fish Tales Clear Stamp Set send birthday wishes today.  Hello, welcome back to our May Release Blog Blitz! Jean Okimoto here with another design featuring this great new clear stamp set and the matching set of dies.


It's easy to organize (and find!) your favorite "open" die sets if they're attached to curtain rings from a fabric or home store.  I attach the rings to a magnetic bar that's attached to a shelf in my work area.  That's a lot of attachment - but it works for me!

Paint deckle-edged rough watercolor paper from Shizen Design with Peerless Watercolors and air-dry it.  Add a pearly wash of diluted Peerless Transparent Silver and heat-set it.  The deckled edges and texture enhance the shimmery layer and contrast nicely against the matte diecuts.   Trim the right and bottom edges with a Rectangle Basics die.  

Gather an assortment of yellow, orange, flamingo, turquoise and green cardstock.  Stamp the happy little fish and wavy seaweed  from the Fish Tales Clear Stamp Set with VersaFine Onyx Black.   Heat-set the ink, then diecut the designs  with the matching Fish Tales Die Set. 

Diecut Seaweed Stalks from light green cardstock.

Stamp the greeting - from the Fish Tales Clear Stamp Set - on lime green cardstock.  Cut it with a Rectangle Basics die.

Score, cut and fold a 5-1/2" square white card.  Attach the diecuts and greeting - use foam dots for the bright yellow, orange and turquoise fishes.  Add blue gem stickers.


Want a chance to win the Fish Tales Clear Stamp Set?  Just add your comment to today's post - and it may soon join your Memory Box and Open Studio Collection.  Add your comment to Jenny's Fish Tales blog blitz post too - and all of the other Design Team posts during this week's blog blitz.  The entry deadline is 11:59 PM EST on Sunday, May 14th.  Good Luck to you!

We'll be using a few of the newest dies and stamps at the May 13th SUMMER HEARTS class at Impress.  We have so many great heart- and love-themed dies, stamps and papers - let's put them to work on summery cards for weddings, thank-yous and cards to say "I'm thinking of you."  See you on Saturday!





Sat 06

Sheer Circle Trimming and Fish Tales from the May Release
by Jean Okimoto


MemoryBoxFamilyOfFish, MemoryBoxRectangleBasics-MemoryBoxFishTalesClearStamps-MemoryBoxFishTalesDieSet-MemoryBoxSpringVioletsClearStampSet-MemoryBoxSheerCircleTrimming, JeanOkimoto-PeerlessWatercolors-ShizenDesign-WatercoloredCards-WatercoloredFishCards-ImpressCardsAndCrafts

A junior fish from the new Fish Tales Clear Stamp Set is the awesome alpha fish here, leading the Family of Fish across a watercolored backdrop.  The new Sheer Circle Trimming border - also from the May Release - accents this beachy scene.  Hi, Jean Okimoto here, with a design for a Dad, grad, or anyone special.


Paint deckled watercolor paper from Shizen Design with Peerless Watercolors and dry it.  Add a light layer of diluted Peerless Transparent Gold for a soft shimmer.  


Specialty papers can be challenging - especially when you need straight edges and sharp corners.  Memory Box dies are the perfect solution. They're great for cutting artpapers - including this watercolor paper made from recycled garment industry fabric scraps and the metallic marbled paper for the stamped fish.  

Place the deckled edge inside the cutting edges of the Rectangle Basics die and trim the watercolor paper.  I love the way the edge complements the Sheer Circle Trimming.

Cut white cardstock with the 3-3/4" x 5" Rectangle Basics die.  Cut it again with the Sheer Circle Trimming.  Determine the placement of the watercolor paper.  Cut the watercolor paper with the matching section of the Sheer Circle Trimming die.

Cut Family of Fish from Turquoise Cardstock. Remove the fish on the right side.  

Stamp the fish on metallic marbled paper from Shizen Design with VersaFine Onyx Black.  Emboss it with detail clear powder.  Cut it with the matching die from the new Fish Tales Die Set.  Cut an extra fish from cardboard and layer it for dimension.

Stamp  and emboss the greeting - from the new Spring Lilacs Clear Stamp Set - on orange cardstock.

Attach everything to a white A-2 card - use foam dots to attach the greeting.  Add gold gem stickers.


Do you have a stash of special artpapers that are a bit challenging to cut because of their texture, fibers and metallic inks?  Trimmers, paper punches and scissors tend to slip and/or tear the paper.  Cut them with Memory Box and Poppystamps dies instead!

Please be sure to join us for our May Collection Blog Blitz next week.  We can't wait to introduce you to our newest dies and stamps - and share our ideas with you.   New products, design inspiration and prizes!

Thanks for stopping by...have a great weekend.










Fri 28

Ocean Card
by Donna

Hello everyone!

Today I have a ocean theme card for you, featuring some of the summer dies that were just released.


To make this card I die cut the Seaweed Collage,Windswept Stems and the Swimming Seahorses from watercolor paper and painted them with watercolors.  For the background behind the Seaweed Collage I embossed watercolor paper with the Family of Fish die and watercolored that.  Once it was dry I spattered it with white paint and glued it to a white card base.


I used foam tape to adhere the seaweed collage die cut to the card and glued the other die cuts in place.  To finish the card I glued some cheesecloth and shells to the bottom of the card and then sprinkled some sand across the cheesecloth.  I added some glass drops to further embellish the card and you're done!


Thanks for stopping by today and have a great weekend!




Thu 09

Butterfly Swell on the Spring Blog Blitz
by Jean Okimoto




The new Butterfly Swell joins our Spring Blog Blitz today!  Hello - hope you're enjoying our blitz and loving the great new dies as much as we enjoy sharing our designs with you.  Jean Okimoto here, with a watercolored butterfly design for you.

Be sure to add your comments to each designer's post throughout the blitz for a chance to win a new die from our latest collection of spring and nautical designs.  Our blitz began on March 6th  and continues through March 12th.

Here are the directions for this simple card.  Paint a background on watercolor paper.  Splotchy and bright stands out more than soft and dreamy for this design - trust me!   


Cut Butterfly Swell from white cardstock and layer it over the background.  Slip the top and bottom center "tabs" behind the background to create the illusion of floating butterflies.  The die is actually designed to cut through the top and bottom portions so the butterflies are suspended between two sections of cardstock.  I decided to give it a different look here.  

Trim the Butterfly Swell panel to fit onto a textured white A-6 (4-⅝" x 6-¼") card.  Round the right corners of the panel and the card.

Cut the antennae - from the new Morning Garden Butterflies Set - from pink glittered cardstock.  The Morning Garden Butterflies are designed to match the solid butterflies of the Butterfly Ensemble set too.  

Add tiny clear iridescent sequins.


Hope you like this colorful and easy design.  Paint a stash of watercolored backgrounds in your favorite spring and summer shades - they'll be ready when you need them for a quick card for any occasion.

Big thanks to everyone from last week's HEY THANKS class at Impress.  Hope you enjoyed the techniques - and being among the first to create cards with the Spring Release.  Everyone got to meet Steve and Quincy too!  Thanks to Ann, Shari and Erin for helping us fill those shopping baskets with the latest must-haves.

Want a chance to win the Butterfly Swell?  Just leave a comment here - and you'll be entered to win this versatile, classic design that would make a great addition to your stash of Memory Box dies.  Add your comments to all of the Design Team posts throughout the blitz for more chances to win great dies from our new collection.  The entry deadline is 11:59 PM EST on Sunday March 12th.   Good Luck!





Fri 05

A Reverse Butterfly Collage Celebration
by Jean Okimoto


A colorful Reverse Butterfly Collage is great for any summer celebration - and watercoloring it is almost as enjoyable as the event itself.  Yes, it's Friday!  Hi there, Jean Okimoto here - with a design featuring one of my favorite dies.

Paint a rectangle of watercolor paper with Peerless Watercolors  in a random pattern of greens, blues, teals, violets and purples.  Air-dry it for a few minutes, the press it with a dry iron on the cotton setting.  Cut Reverse Butterfly Collage from white cardstock.

Place the watercolor paper behind the collage and lightly tape the layers together with removable tape.  Trim the layers into a rectangle.  Remove the watercolor paper and cut it slightly smaller than the collage so any colored edges won't peek out along the sides.  Attach the watercolor paper behind the collage.  Attach it to an A-6 card of textured turquoise cardstock.

Attach Scor-Tape behind gold mirror cardstock and cut two sets of the antennae from the Leavenworth Butterfly Trio die set.  Attach the antennae to the collage.  

Stamp "celebrate" - from the Open Studio Party Time Clear Stamps - on white cardstock with Radiant Neons Electric Purple.  Emboss it with detail clear powder. Cut it with the smallest Pinpoint Rectangle Layer.   Attach it to the card - use foam dots on the right side to compensate for the thickness of the collage and watercolor paper on the left.   Add gold sequins.

I think summer birthdays, graduations and weddings would be the perfect occasions for this card...hope you agree!


See you at the STAMPS AND A DIE - OH MY! class at Impress tomorrow.  We'll be using some of our favorite/classic/go-to stamps and dies on bright summer cards.  There'll be a few soon-to-be favorites too!

Thanks for stopping by - have a great weekend...




Thu 04

Follow Your Bliss with the Silver Springs Butterfly
by Jean Okimoto


A sun-splashed watercolored background sets the scene for the Silver Springs Butterfly die... and a bit of inspiration for our August Challenge.  Hello, Jean Okimoto here - thanks for stopping by today.  

Congrats to the winners of the July Challenge - here's  a link to the details of the August Challenge.  "Yellow" is the theme of this month's challenge - sunny, bright, upbeat - and it makes me think of lemonade, sorbet, lemon bars and cream pies.  Yes, I'm always thinking about food - but it's time to make a card...

Press the inks of a Melon Melody Kaleidacolor multi-colored dye inkpad onto a large acrylic block.  Use a waterbrush to paint watercolor paper with the different colors - let them mix and blend for a few minutes.  Dry the paper with a heat-tool.  If the watercolor paper is warped, cover it with a sheet of printer paper and press it with a dry iron on the cotton setting.  Trim it to 2-⅛" x 4-½".

Here's a tip - scrunch a sheet of deli sandwich paper and rub it briskly over the Silver Springs Butterfly die.  That makes it easy to remove the diecut - and all of those tiny pieces - from the die.  I've used scrunched waxed paper in the past - but that could leave a hazy residue on the mirror cardstock - it's just easier to buy an eternal supply of deli sandwich sheets and use it for both matte and shiny cardstock.  Cut Silver Springs Butterfly from gold mirror cardstock.  

Cut two of the Butterfly Ensemble butterflies from white vellum.  Attach the vellum butterflies under the gold mirror butterflies.  It's hard to see here, but it adds a soft translucent look and lets the gold stand out from the background. I just attached them with tiny slivers of Scor-Tape along the center of the butterflies.   Attach it to the background.  

Place a strip of Scor-Tape behind a scrap of gold mirror cardstock and cut the antennae from the Leavenworth Butterfly Trio set.  Attach everything to an A-6 (4-⅝" x 6-¼") card of textured soft white cardstock.  

Another tip - prep textured cardstock for stamping by placing it between two pieces of smooth cardstock and running it through your diecut machine between the cutting plates. The pressure flattens the texture just a bit - and leaves it smooth enough for stamping.  Stamp Follow your Bliss with VersaFine Spanish Moss and dry the ink.  Cut it with the smallest Stitched Rectangle Layer.  Attach it with foamdots.  Add gold sequins.


Hope you like this sunny bright card...and that you've decided to enter this month's challenge.  Good Luck!

If you're in the Seattle area, join us for the August 6th STAMP AND A DIE - OH MY! class at the Tukwila Impress.  We'll combine some of our favorite stamps and dies and create colorful cards for everyday greetings.

Thanks for stopping by...see you again tomorrow!

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Sun 17

Making Spirits Bright and a Plush Succulent
by Jean Okimoto


Hi there - we're in a big flowers mode this weekend - let's combine a Plush Succulent with some snowflakes from the Making Spirits Bright Stamp Set.  Jean Okimoto here...hope you're enjoying a sunny summer weekend!  

Our Plush Collection makes beautiful poufy felt flowers and succulents when petals and pieces are hot-glued in a natural, organic arrangement.  Or, try a more stylized look using 5 each of the Plush Succulent petals - except the largest and smallest. I'm gluegun-challenged so I just attached the velvet paper diecuts with doublestick tape.  It helps to attach the petals to a circle of cardstock first, then you can move it around to find the perfect spot for your flower.


Paint a background with Peerless Watercolors and heat-set it.  Diecut it with a Stitched Rectangle Layer.  

All of the stamps are from the new Making Spirits Bright set - they're officially snowflakes, but create beautiful flowers too!  Stamp the solid design on the smooth side of flamingo cardstock with VersaFine Onyx Black and cut it with the coordinating die from the Making Spirits Bright die set.  Stamp the others on the watercolor paper.

Diecut two of the Grosgrain Ribbons from glossy black cardstock.  Leave the cardstock in the dies and dry-emboss them for extra texture - use the rubber embossing mat and plates required for your machine.  Diecut the leaves from the Large Billow Flower Background and Leaves set.  Add clear sequins.

Want your card to be the perfect shade of white to match your watercolor paper?  Just use watercolor paper to make your card!  Use the smoother side  inside for your stamped greeting or handwritten note.  


See you at Impress again on July 23rd for two holiday classes - CHRISTMAS WITH MEMORY BOX and HOLLY JOLLY HEADSTART.  We'll create colorful holiday cards ranging from artsy + advanced to simple + "mass-produceable" - with diecuts and stamps, sequins, glitter and cool techniques.

Thanks a bunch for stopping by again today - enjoy the rest of your weekend!





Sat 16

Plush Anemone Party Time!
by Jean Okimoto



Celebrate a special birthday with a zingy orange felt Plush Anemone and Party Time's big 2-9.  It's an easy way to personalize a card and make it extra-special for the birthday girl - or your favorite store!  Hi, Jean Okimoto here, sharing a card I designed for Impress' 29th Birthday this weekend.


Cut the 4" Stitched Circle Layer from the smoother side of textured yellow cardstock.  Stamp Articles Ledger with Brilliance Pearlescent Olive.  Stamp the triangle circle, numbers and inside greeting from the Party Time set on the smoother side of a cardstock scrap with Memento Luxe Espresso Truffle.  Emboss them with detail clear powder. Cut them with Stitched Circle Layers.

Cut two of the Grosgrain Ribbons from green cardstock.   

Cut 5 each of the Plush Anemone petals from orange felt.  Cut the center fringe piece from black cardstock - use just half of it for this flower.  Trim 2 of the strips from one end to reduce the size of the center.  Attach a narrow strip of doublestick tape along the bottom of the fringe and roll it into a tight circle.  

It's optional - but I like to glue the petals onto a 1.25" circle of scrap cardstock so it's easier to handle the completed flower - instead of gluing it directly to the background.  Assemble the flower - leave an open circle of space in the center to attach the base of the black fringe.

Attach label paper or a sticker sheet to yellow felt to stabilize the little felt pieces and cut Blooming Border.  Attach one of the little yellow flowers in the center. 

Attach everything to a 5.25" square card of textured yellow cardstock.  Add bright orange sequins.  The weight, thickness and shape of the card will require extra postage and handling - but hey, it's a special birthday!


If you're in the area (or within driving, biking, sailing, running or walking distance!) - head to Impress for their celebration and 25% shopping discount today - July 16th.   Happy Birthday to Ann, Cindi, Lara and the entire Impress Team.  29 Years of upscale creativity, inspiration, great customer service - and a wonderful selection of Memory Box and Poppystamps products!

Thanks for stopping by...