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29 posts from September 2019

Wed 18

Thinking of You
by Melissa Rusk

Happy Wednesday friends! Today I used one of the new stamp sets with some inks to create a blended and stamped card. 


I started with three colors of the Distress Oxide inks in browns to create my ombre background. Starting with the lightest color first, I inked over the whole paper with a blending brush. Then I took the medium color and went a little more than half way down the paper. I finished with some of the darkest brown along the top third of the paper.

Then using the set of leaves from the Graceful Fern stamp set I stamped them three times using the darkest brown Oxide ink color. I added in my sentiment from the same stamp set to finish it off. 

Ink blending is so fun and it works great with these stamps! Have a great day!




Tue 17

Merry Mistletoe
by Trina Pham

Hello there.  Today I am sharing another simple Christmas card.  It used a technique I was intimidated by, but I finally tried it at a retreat back in May thanks to Susan.  The smell was what put me off, but then Susan recommended the splashless type.  Problem solved!  I barely even notice the smell.


Started by ink blending with blending brushes on hot press watercolor paper to create an ombré monochromatic background.  Stamped the mistletoe from Merry and Bright Mistletoe with Archival black ink.


Next, applied bleach to the image with a small brush.  The bleach will lift the color.


It’s a good idea to use a stamping tool, so the image can be re-stamped, if needed.  The image can be left as is or colored in.  


As you can see, I did both.  Left the leaves and only colored the berries with a red water-based marker.  For some shine and dimension, added Crystal Glaze to the berries.  And lately, I love my splatters, so added some to the upper part using white gouache paint. The sentiment from Mistletoe Swag was white heat embossed on a black strip to finish.


 You can save yourself a step by using color cardstock instead of coloring your own.  Keep in mind, the bleaching will not be immediate and will be noticeable only after some drying time.  And that does it for me.  Thank you for stopping by.  Have a wonderful week.






Mon 16

Grateful Autumn Leaves and Acorns
by Anne Thompson

 As soon as the 2019 Holiday images were released I knew that one of my first cards would incorporate the leaves and acorns from the GRATEFUL AUTUMN clear stamp set CL5243.

IMG_1761 (2)

I began by stamping the large leaves on a piece of off-white cardstock using VersaMark ink, added gold tinsel embossing powder, and heat set it.

IMG_1751 (1)

To color in the leaves I used a water brush and Distress Inks in Wild Honey, Rusty Hinge, Spiced Marmalade, Crushed Olive, and Gathered Twigs.  Because this image is stamped on cardstock, the water brush works fine because it doesn't saturate the paper.  I just picked up the color from the ink pad using the water brush and cleaned the brush between colors by scribbling the tip on scrap paper.  When the leaves were dry I cut the panel to 4 X 5.25.


Next I stamped and embossed the two acorns, painted them using the water brush and the same colors as the leaves, and fussy cut them out.  I used the water brush and more of the Gathered Twigs ink to color the cut edges.  Then I stamped the sentiment "begin each day with a grateful heart" with more VersaMark ink and used the gold tinsel embossing powder.  There are so many wonderful words in this stamp set that it was hard to choose which to use.

I used a round foam pad ink blending tool to add color to the edges of the leaf and sentiment panels. And then I went direct-to-paper with the ink pad to add a fine dark line on the edges.


To assemble everything, I used a tape runner to secure the leaf panel to a lightly-colored kraft notecard.  I added the sentiment strip using foam tape for more dimension.  I put foam dots behind the acorns to raise them to the height of the sentiment strip .


This is definitely a card for my September class this week at the local Senior Center.  They will love this!  I think you will love this stamp set, too!

Happy Crafting!

Anne Signature



Grateful Autumn

Clear Stamps Set



Sun 15

Send Hugs with the Memory Box Simon Says Stamp’s Exclusive Stamptember Stamp Set by Jean Okimoto

MemoryBoxStamptemberExclusiveSimonSaysStampSet, MemoryBoxStylishFrameTrio, MemoryBoxBoldFriendlyGreetingsClearStamps, MemoryBoxHeartBoard, JeanOkimoto, DiecutFlowerCards, CleanAndSimpleFlowerCard

Send a hug - and brighten someone's day - with a floral design from the Memory Box Stamptember Stamp Set for Simon Says Stamp.  It's a limited edition set celebrating the 10th anniversary of Stamptember and it's available while supplies last.  

Hi there, Jean Okimoto here with a simple design that's perfect when you need a quick card.  If you're busy or coloring-challenged like I am - this is your card!

MemoryBoxStamptemberExclusiveSimonSaysStampSet, MemoryBoxStylishFrameTrio, MemoryBoxBoldFriendlyGreetingsClearStamps, MemoryBoxHeartBoard, JeanOkimoto, DiecutFlowerCards, CleanAndSimpleFlowerCard

Stamp the bouquet on the smoother side of Coral Creme cardstock with Morning Mist VersaFine Clair.  Dry the ink. Cut it with the large circle frame from the Stylish Frame Trio.  Save the delicate double outer circles too.

Cut three accent strips of Rock Candy (¾" x 4"), Easter Grass (1"x 5")  and Arroyo (¾"x 4-½") cardstock.  

Use Worn Lipstick Distress Oxides to  stamp "sending" from the Bold Friendly Greetings Clear Stamps near the bottom right corner of a 5-½" square white card.  Stamp "hugs" from the limited edition Fresh Cut Bouquet stamp set.

Diecut a heart from Arroyo using the Heart Board die.

Assemble the card.  Add peach gem stickers.  

MemoryBoxStamptemberExclusiveSimonSaysStampSet, MemoryBoxStylishFrameTrio, MemoryBoxBoldFriendlyGreetingsClearStamps, MemoryBoxHeartBoard, JeanOkimoto, DiecutFlowerCards, CleanAndSimpleFlowerCard

Hope you like this quick and easy design.  Thanks for visiting...enjoy your summer weekend!











Sat 14

Simon Says Stamp’s Exclusive Stamptember Fresh Cut Bouquet by Jean Okimoto

MemoryBoxSimonSaysStampStamptember, MemoryBoxPetiteLeafFrame, MemoryBoxRectangleBasics, Ink-LiftingTechnique, DistressOxides, JeanOkimoto, StampedFlowerCards

The Memory Box Exclusive Fresh Cut Bouquet Set for Simon Says Stamp is great for the ink-lifting technique.  Pair it with warm Distress Oxide colors and crisp white diecuts from the Petite Leaf Frame Set.   The 10th Anniversary Stamptember Limited Edition stamp set is only available while supplies last - order your set soon and enjoy it for late summer and fall projects.

Hi, Jean Okimoto here, using a popular technique that's been around for several years -  but creates unique results each time.  Sponge or brush the smoother side of watercolor paper with overlapping layers of  Worn Lipstick and Picked Raspberry Distress Oxides.  Set it aside to air-dry.  Have a Kleenex tissue and another stamp block ready for the next step.  

MemoryBoxSimonSaysStampStamptember, MemoryBoxPetiteLeafFrame, MemoryBoxRectangleBasics, Ink-LiftingTechnique, DistressOxides, JeanOkimoto, StampedFlowerCards

Spritz the clean Fresh Cut Bouquet stamp with water and press it firmly onto the inked watercolor paper for about a minute. Carefully remove the stamp and lay the tissue flat on the watercolor paper.  Press it with the stamp block to absorb the excess water.

Dry the watercolor paper then trim it with the 3-½" x 4-¾" Rectangle Basics die.

Stamp the greeting - also from the set - on a scrap of watercolored paper with Morning Mist VersaFine Clair.  Trim it with the smallest Rectangle Basics die.

Cut the leaves and pods from the Petite Leaf Frame set from white cardstock.

Attach everything to an A-6 card of textured white cardstock - use foam dots for the greeting.  Add yellow gem stickers.

MemoryBoxSimonSaysStampStamptember, MemoryBoxPetiteLeafFrame, MemoryBoxRectangleBasics, Ink-LiftingTechnique, DistressOxides, JeanOkimoto, StampedFlowerCards

Hope you'll try this technique with different designs from our 2019 Holiday Collection.  It would be great with the evergreens, leaves and wreaths.

Thanks for visiting...see you tomorrow!








Fri 13

Hello Card
by Donna Sledzik


Good morning everyone,

Today's card uses an exclusive stamp set that is part of Simon Says Stamptember event. Please check out Laura's post yesterday for more information or hop over to Simon Says Stamp blog. 


I used a spotlight stamping technique for this card.  

On a white cardstock panel I stamped my image with Vintage Photo Distress ink.  I stamped on another strip of white cardstock with black ink and colored that image with colored pencil.

I lightly sponged Antique Linen Distress ink on both panels and spattered them with black and brown inks. Once the ink was dry I used foam tape and adhered my colored strip on top of the stamped panel.  I just matched up my image so it looks like one continuous pattern.  

I die cut the word hello several times from black cardstock and glued them together.  This gives the word a little more dimension. 


To finish the card, I stamped my sentiment under the word hello and added some black epoxy dots to the card front.  

I hope you stop by the Simon Says Stamp blog to get more inspiration!

Have a great day!







Wed 11

Stamptember Event With Simon Says Stamp


Greetings friends.  We are so excited to announce that we are participating in the Simon Says Stamp Stamptember event.  We have partnered with Simon to release an exclusive stamp and die set that will be available while supplies last.  Today we will be sharing some of our designer samples, but we also encourage you to visit the Simon Says Stamp blog to see lots of ideas for using the stamp set.  Hopefully you will be as excited about the new set as we are!



By Donna Sledzik

Why not highlight part of the stamp for a dramatic effect?


by Donna Sledzik

Donna once again spotlighted one part of the stamped image but in a completely different way than the first design.


by Laura Fulcher

Fall is approaching, and the stamp set lends itself well for seasonal color palettes.  You could do pastels for Spring, vivid colors for Summer or break out your autumnal colors.


by Laura Fulcher

Intimidated by coloring all the flowers?  Why not color everything but the flowers?


by Anne Thompson

Pair your design with Fall patterned papers and embrace the season.


by Anne Thompson

Don't forget to pair your card with a coordinating envelope!

SimonSaysStampStamptember, MemoryBoxExclusiveStamptemberClearStamps, MemoryBoxSimonSaysStampFreshCutBouquetClearStamps, MemoryBoxBoldFriendlyGreetingsClearStamps, MemoryBoxHeartBoard, JeanOkimoto, MemoryBoxCraftDies, DiecutFlowerCards, StampedFlowerCards

by Jean Okimoto

Make someone smile - trim Fresh Cut Bouquet with a circle from the new Stylish Frame Trio Set  - and send some hugs!

I hope you found lots of new ideas for using this exclusive stamp and die set.  If you want to see more ideas, visit Instagram and visit the #Stamptember hashtags to visit other designers.

Also, in addition to the stamp set collaboration with Simon, we are busy creating holiday projects using the latest collection! Check out our video this week featuring a fun technique (Die Cutting with Napkins!) using some of our favorite new holiday dies!

Wed 11

Add a Speckled Background to a Holiday Greenery Card by Jean Okimoto


MemoryBoxHolidayGreeneryClearStamps, MemoryBoxSquareBasics, MemoryBoxSpeckledBackground, JeanOkimoto, ImagineCrafts, ImpressCardsAndCrafts, The CraftersWorkshop, HandmadeFallCards,SplatterCards

Give a classic Christmas design a unique autumn look with the new Holiday Greenery Clear Stamps.  Invert the poinsettia and berries then watercolor them in warm colors on a caring card for someone special.  Hi, Jean Okimoto here with a fall card - and an easy way to add controlled splatters to any design.  

MemoryBoxHolidayGreeneryClearStamps, MemoryBoxSquareBasics, MemoryBoxSpeckledBackground, JeanOkimoto, ImagineCrafts, ImpressCardsAndCrafts, The CraftersWorkshop, HandmadeFallCards,SplatterCards

Color the smoother side of watercolor paper with a watery wash of Bundled Sage Distress Oxide.  Dry it with a heat-tool - alternately heating the back and front of the paper to minimize curling.

Stamp it with Pinecone VersaFine Clair and emboss it with detail clear powder.  Press the inks from Tomato Vine Kaleidacolor onto a large acrylic block.  Use it as a palette to paint the design.

Stamp the greetings on scraps of the tinted watercolor paper with VersaMark.  Emboss them with detail clear powder.  When they're cooled, brush them with Shady Lane VersaFine Clair.  Remove any residual ink on the embossing with a tissue.

MemoryBoxHolidayGreeneryClearStamps, MemoryBoxSquareBasics, MemoryBoxSpeckledBackground, JeanOkimoto, ImagineCrafts, ImpressCardsAndCrafts, The CraftersWorkshop, HandmadeFallCards,SplatterCards

Cut  Speckled Background from stencil plastic - the 12" square sheets from The Crafters Workshop are great for this.  Remove the diecut, rotate it 180 degrees and cut it again.  This adds a second set of holes in different areas. The diecut stencil in the background was cut once.  The stencil taped to the paper was cut, rotated and cut again.  

Brush or sponge Spanish Moss VersaFine through the stencil onto the stamped paper.  Move the stencil around to fill in any areas that need more spots.

Ink-splattering is cool - but my splats don't always land where I want them to.  Stenciling lets you control the location and intensity of those little dots.  You can even multi-color the dots with different sections of the stencil.

Trim the paper with the 3-¼" Square Basics die.  Cut a 1-½" x 3-¾" strip of dark green cardstock.  Cut a ¾" x 3-¾" strip of the new crushed copper paper from Shizen Design, sold at Impress.

Attach everything to an A-6 (4-½" x 6-¼") card of Candy Corn cardstock - use foam tape for the greetings. Punch and attach ¼" circles of the crushed copper paper.

Big thanks to everyone from last week's SIMPLY ASIAN and AWESOME BLOSSOM(s) classes at Impress!  I appreciate your driving - and flying - to join us.  Thanks Jenny - for those flowery bowls of great chocolates - all 6 varieties of them!  And thanks to Erin and Lynne for answering all of our questions and finding everything we needed.

No classes this weekend -  I'll see everyone again at the HALLOWEEN STASH CARDS class at the Impress Halloween Event on September 21st.  We're using great dies, inks and stamps - and mystery items from my stash.  Everyone gets some stash extras to make more cards at home.  We'll make 5 cards and a treat wrapper.

Thanks for visiting...





Wed 11

Die Cutting with Napkins Video by Dave Brethauer

Hello and welcome!

Like everyone, I am always trying to think of new and different ways to stretch my supplies and I want to share with you a technique that is inexpensive and easy, and it is something that you will have so much fun doing!

Check out the video for how to cut paper napkins with your dies so that they are still sturdy enough to craft with. I did a little experimenting before I recorded the video to see what works!

(Watch this video in HD by clicking here)

What you will notice with this technique is the terrific texture that appears when you color the die cuts with watercolor! The die cuts puff up and wrinkle a little bit when you add liquid to them, changing the smooth die cut surface into a slightly puckered shape. The color spreads quickly - sort of a faux watercolor technique - and because of the layers of napkin, the color is rich and deep when the paint soaks in. I accented the watercolors with a gentle coating of metallic watercolor to give them a little sparkle. For the projects in the video, I used some Gansai Tambi Watercolors and Starry Color paints - but try this with any regular and metallic watercolor!

You can experiment with how many layers of paper napkin you use, colored napkins,  - or maybe try tissue paper! The possibilities are endless!

Glad Tidings Berries Card

94306 Silverdale Branch

CL5245 Tidings Wreath Clear stamp set

Nap (1 of 16)Napkin2--3

I really like how the texture catches the light and shadows!

Nap (8 of 8)

Thankful Corner Branch Card

94301 Harvest Branch Corner Frame 

CL5243 Grateful Autumn Clear Stamp set


Once the piece is dry, it may not be completely flat - this is OK! It will add a cultural feel to your project.

Nap (14 of 16)Nap (14 of 16)

Night Before Christmas Card

94290 Corner Holly Swirl

CL5234 Typewriter Holiday Elements clear stamp set


Dies that have cut lines really show off this technique - the napkins retain those deep cuts and puff up around them.

Nap (7 of 8)

Nap (8 of 8)

Frosty Pine Card

94283 Pine Needle Oval Frame

CL5244 Holiday Greenery clear stamp set

Distress Oxide Peacock Feathers, Faded Jeans and Walnut Stain for the background

Nap (4 of 16)

Nap (1 of 16)

Here you can see how much the pine needle die cut is thicker and more raised than the background inlay.


Holiday Poinsettias

2229 Delicate Poinsettia

2235 Winter Berries

CL5246 Merry and Bright Mistletoe clear stamp set



Nap (14 of 16)

This technique really shines with leaf and floral shapes - the texture looks like real poinsettias!
Nap (14 of 16)

Autumn Leaves

2248 Autumn Leaf Set

30117 Wrapped Stitch Frames

CL5243 Grateful Autumn clear stamp set

Napkin--8Nap (3 of 8)Nap (4 of 16)

The crinkled look on leaf shapes makes them look real!

Tue 10

Spotlight Christmas Cards
by Trina Pham

Hello there.  I was doing a little re-organizing of my craft space and found some color cardstock I didn’t think I had any more.  I almost grabbed the blue color one (my favorite color), but decided to go “outside the box” and go for colors I rarely use.  I did some spotlight ink blending and made these Christmas cards with the fabulous new products from the Holiday release.


This blending technique gives a glow effect.  With most ombré ink blending, I like to use three gradient colors (light, medium, dark).  But by using a light color cardstock, it served as the light color and only the medium and dark ink colors were needed.


Started by die cutting the Gilded Wide Candle from white cardstock and adhering it to the panel.  


Using a blending brush, laid down the medium color around the candle, leaving the middle area untouched.  Doesn’t matter if ink gets on the  die cut because it will be covered up later. 


The darkest color was added around the medium color next.  


To emphasize the glow effect, applied black ink around the edges.  I did work the panel a little more after the process photos were taken. 


To complete the card, the candle was painted with white gouache paint.   The candle die cut was then stacked with another white and a gold foil die cut for dimension.  


The sentiment from Merry and Bright Mistletoe was heat embossed with white embossing powder directly on the panel.  The panel must be completely dry for this step (don’t ask me how I know 😂).  Or I would suggest doing any heat embossing first and just do some emboss resist.  Finished off with some white gouache paint splatters.


My second card was much easier.  There was no heat embossing directly on the panel involved, so no drying time was required.  I was also able to get a smoother blend for some reason.  


This technique can be done with darker cardstock as long as the ink colors are darker.  It would have a more dramatic look.  If I make them, Halloween cards would be perfect for this technique.  And that is it for today.  Thank you for hanging with me.  Enjoy your day.