I am a quasi-hobby independent Stampin' Up! demonstrator. I do not book parties but I specialize in one on one instruction plus I still wanted a space to show off my cards and share advice about stamping and papercraft. Enjoy! All stamped images and paper are (c) Stampin' Up.

Saturday, 18 January 2020

Don't forget about Paper Pumpkin!

LOL, it's easy to forget that Paper Pumpkin exists. It's Stampin' Up's monthly mystery subscription box. I received one when I became a demo years ago, but I only recently subscribed after Mom showed an interest in cardmaking. The kits come with adhesive dots, but I prefer my favourite tear tap. Regardless, you're good to go!

You get an acrylic stamping block in your first order, so make sure not to throw it away :) Each kit may vary--cards, treat boxes, ornaments--but they all contain an exclusive stamp set. There are more than enough supplies to make all the projects.

You don't even have to make it like the picture :) You can use the die cuts with other Stampin' Up! items from the regular catalogue as the colours coordinate. "Alternative" projects can be found all over Facebook or Pinterest. For instance, Mom and I made cards instead of gift tags from the November 2019 Winter Gifts box and I gave December's box to Mom so she would have the perfect cards on hand. I introduced a friend of mine to the world of stamping in only 15 minutes with February's box :D Paper Pumpkins can be shared with anyone! Cardmaking can be really intimidating and people easily build confidence when they have success early on.

Be sure to subscribe by the tenth of every month to get that month's kit. Shipping is included in the price plus you can suspend a subscription or cancel anytime, so give Paper Pumpkin a try!

Your Friend, Christine

Tuesday, 14 January 2020

Purple Posy Tips from Stampin' Up!

As many of you may recall, Purple Posy ink pads just were not to be. The markers and paper are still available, however.

However, since Purple Posy is a cousin to Highland Heather, you can still try and get the look. Stampin' Up! offered these tips recently:
  • Stamp on Purple Posy Cardstock (item 150881) using VersaMark Ink (item 102283) to create a tone-on-tone look.
  • Heat emboss using Clear Stampin’ Emboss Powder (item 109130) on Purple Posy Cardstock.
  • Add 6–8 drops of Highland Heather Classic Stampin’ Ink Refill (item 147167) to a Stampin’ Spritzer (item 126185), then dilute with rubbing alcohol to reach your desired color. Spritz the mixture onto your project.
  • Use Highland Heather Classic Stampin’ Ink (item 147103) with a Sponge Brayer (item 141714), Stamping Sponge (item 141337), Aqua Painter (item 103954), or stamped off. These methods look especially great on Purple Posy Cardstock!
  • Color cling stamps using a Purple Posy Stampin’ Write Marker (item 150079) before stamping.
  • Color stamped images using either light or dark Purple Posy Stampin’ Blends (item 149566).
  • Stamp on Purple Posy Cardstock using VersaMark Ink to create a tone-on-tone look.
  • Heat emboss using Clear Stampin’ Emboss Powder (item 109130) on Purple Posy Cardstock.
  • Add 6–8 drops of Highland Heather Classic Stampin’ Ink Refill to a Stampin’ Spritzer, then dilute with rubbing alcohol to reach your desired color. Spritz the mixture onto your project.
  • Use Highland Heather Classic Stampin’ Ink with a Sponge Brayer, Stamping Sponge, Aqua Painter, or stamped off. These methods look especially great on Purple Posy Cardstock!
  • Color cling stamps using a Purple Posy Stampin’ Write Marker before stamping.
  • Color stamped images using either light or dark Purple Posy Stampin’ Blends.

Your Friend, Christine

Sunday, 5 January 2020

Time to Sale-A-Brate!

Stampers always have something to look forward to in the New Year--Stampin' Up!'s Sale-A-Bration. There are usually two rounds of nifty rewards and the first one is pretty sweet, with stamps, punches, dies, paper and more--check it out!. Sale-A-Bration runs from January 3-March 31, 2020.

The fun part of being a demonstrator, even a hobby demo, is that I can order products in advance. I chose these rewards: Thoughtful Blooms and matching punch, Lovely Lily Pad and the Lily Pad Impressions paper. The Lily Pad Impressions paper is quite bold and I'm not sure I have a big enough personality to use it, but we'll see!

Sale-A-Bration rewards
2020 Sale-A-Bration Rewards

I couldn't resist getting these stamps from the 2020 Occasions Mini-Catalogue. The mini-catalogue runs from January 3 to June 2, 2020, so there is lots of time to order. If you love punches, there are loads to choose from like the Heartfelt Bundle. I bought Special Someone as I'm an animal lover and Breathtaking Bouquet because it's a fabulous giant floral stamp with so much possibilities.

Stay tuned for some sampler swap fun from me and my Ink-Cited Canadians team mates!

Your Friend, Christine

Sunday, 22 December 2019

December Stamping Projects - Christmas Card Parade!

Merry Christmas and happy holidays! Finally I get a chance to sit down and share some of my Christmas cards. It's been far easier to share them on Instagram (@yourfriendchristine77). Normally I would provide more detailed instructions, but as you can see, I made a lot of different cards. Instead I'll share how I go about designing so many cards in such a short time.

First, I study the fall holiday catalogue long and hard. Sometimes there are sample ideas that I want to CASE (Copy And Steal Everything) or techniques I want to try.

Second, I take out my stash of scrap paper and start making sketches. My grade 6 teacher always taught us that paper has two sides and I never forgot this advice :-) I fold the paper into fourths and cut it apart. Sometimes sketches are detailed, sometimes they aren't. I jot down notes about colours and stamps along the way. All good ideas start with a sketch, even if it is on a napkin.

Third, I look through my stash. New stuff is always fun, but sometimes I want to mix and match. For example, last year's Beautiful Baubles set really compliments this year's Christmas Gleaming set. I also start gathering cardstock or DSP. Usually I put one project to a dollar store basket to stay organized.

Fourth, I order stuff! Yeah, you knew that part was coming :-) As a demonstrator, I get sneak peeks and can order a month ahead of regular customers, w00t!

Fifth, I start writing down all the steps I need to do. This isn't just because I love lists--it's easy to forget a step or measurements. If I want to go back and figure out how I made a card or what I used, then I can.

After that, the making magic part happens. I still work full time, so one evening I might cut paper or make bases and leave stamping and colouring for the weekends. If I can carve out an hour a night with Netflix, I'm doing pretty good! Usually I make cards in sets of ten so I have one to keep for my sample binder.

Lots of ink went into these moose cards with layers of Pool Party, Granite Gray and Petal Pink ink for a wintry look.

Strokes of orange and white pencil crayon on Real Red cardstock make the cardinal pop. For extra shimmer I used gold glitter glue on the branches. A fun and simple and card!

This very festive card was a quick make with the matching punches. Gold ink dots add an extra touch.

More fun with punches! Mint Macaron and Cherry Cobbler are made for each other. The Stamparatus was a big help with this card.

Colouring can be a challenge. I used strokes of purple and blue chalk pastel to create a night scene. The trick is to remove some of the pastel with an eraser to simulate moonlight.

And there you have it! 45 cards to give and five to show off in my sample binder. There actually is a sixth card but I'll reveal it later as I'm not quite happy with them :-) Enjoy the warmth of the holidays and I'll see you back in the new year with Sale-A-Bration!

Your Friend, Christine

Saturday, 23 November 2019

My First Papercrafting Retreat

Last month I did something super fun - I went to my first retreat for cardmakers and scrapbookers. It was always on my bucket list, but the timing didn't work out. Hosted by Stamping with Rose, I spent three wonderful days with just my mom, my ideas and my supplies. I didn't actually know what to expect, so I threw a bunch of things and my old Big Shot into a suitcase and knew that something would come out of it. The real advantage of a retreat is the distraction free zone it provides. You can get up early or stay up late. You can chat with friends or fire up Netflix. You can spread out across your table or build a little fortress of stamp cases and ink pads. It's totally up to you!

6' tables meant lots of elbow room!

One of the gals told me that most people find their first retreat overwhelming and it's true! The second time is more organized. What should you bring to your first retreat? Here's what I recommend:

A retreat is also a good way to polish off any kits or Paper Pumpkins kicking around the craft room. Many attendees were busy with Christmas cards. So many ideas came out of the retreat and I made about three dozen cards. I'm really hoping that the timing for the spring retreat works out in my favour next year :-)

Just a few ideas I came up with!

One of many make and takes

Your Friend, Christine

Monday, 14 October 2019

Hooray! Purple Posy ink pads are finally here :-)

Note: SU! announced November 5th that Purple Posy inks and inkpads are unorderable. There were just too many inconsistencies. The paper and markers will continue to live on.

I love purple so much that I just have to dedicate an entire blog post to Purple Posy, one of the 2019-2021 "in" colours. In colours are five special colours that are produced for two years in ink and paper. Sometimes they do come back - as Peekaboo Peach, Watermelon Wonder and Mint Macaron did last year during the colour refresh. Purple Posy's release was delayed due to quality issues even though paper and markers were readily available. I'm glad it was sorted out. There are rich purples, light purples, red purples, blue purples and every purple in-between that having a lighter shade makes Purple Posy is the perfect companion to all the new purples that came out last year, speaking of that. Here's how they stack up:

As you can see, Purple Posy is a very cool purple with tones of blue. It is also not super light like like Petal Pink or Blushing Bride ink. Now just to find the perfect project for Purple Posy!

Your Friend, Christine

Friday, 30 August 2019

August Stamping Project - Lakeside Thank You Cards

August was a pretty chaotic month with a lot of changes at work. One of my long-time co-workers left to pursue a new adventure in another province and I was stuck for a gift. I didn't want to give her a card, so I gave her a bunch of cards. These cards were put together on short notice in two evenings. I didn't even sketch it out - just hoped that everything would come together!

This isn't the first time I combined Lilypad Lake and Waterfront sets. They compliment each other very well. All I needed for the cards were some Very Vanilla bases, Whisper White cardstock fronts and scrap Pretty Peacock cardstock. I made a mask from scrap paper for the clouds and sponged around it. A little Memento and markers and the sailboats were coloured in. There were very few steps required in the end.

If I were to make this card again, I would add a background stamp - Birch maybe - to the bases. There will be more thank you sets in the future. It's a gift that just keeps on giving :-)

Lilypad Lake thank you cards

Your Friend, Christine