Monday, May 31, 2010

Watch This Space ...

During the month of June, Stampin' Up! will offer several discounted products as "Deals of the Week." No limits and no minimum purchase required.

What are these deals?

I don't know!

Weekly deal announcements will follow the schedule below:

  • Deal #1: Tuesday, 1 June 2010
  • Deal #2: Wednesday, 9 June 2010
  • Deal #3: Wednesday, 16 June 2010
  • Deal #4: Wednesday, 23 June 2010
and will be available until close of business:
  • Deal #1: Tuesday, 8 June 2010
  • Deal #2: Tuesday, 15 June 2010
  • Deal #3: Tuesday, 226 June 2010
  • Deal #4: Wednesday, 30 June 2010
I will be posting the details here each week, so check back often to find out what's on offer.

A note on payment - because these deals are only available for a short period, I would prefer payment by credit card (Visa or MasterCard), as this will be quicker than waiting for funds from cheques or direct deposits to become available.

Also check back for pretty pictures of my recent visit to Sydney for the Stampin' Up! Convention - which I will get uploaded as soon as life calms down somewhat *g*

Friday, May 28, 2010

Limited Time Offer! Join Stampin' Up! today!

Have you been looking at your Stampin' Up! goodies and wishing there was a cheaper way of having it all? Do you have a wish list a mile long? Do you enjoy meeting new people and talking stamping and scrapping at every opportunity?

If any (or all) of the above apply to you, perhaps you should consider becoming a Stampin' Up! demonstrator!

From now until the end of July 2010, your Starter Kit will only cost you $259, a 20% saving from the original $324. With all the great products in the kit you can't go wrong! Click on the logo to the right to view and download a flyer with more information (note: the link will take you to Google Docs - please let me know if you have trouble viewing this, and I will email you the PDF).

Just so's you know, the value of the items in the starter kit is over $500, plus you get a "business block" of forms to get your business started. And for an extra $75, you can also purchase the optional Stampin' Memories Add-On valued at over $150. The Starter Kit and Stampin' Memories Add-Ons are customisable - if you don't like the stamp sets or colours included, simply swap them out for an item of the same or lesser value.

And to get your business started, as a new demonstrator you can get a whopping 30% discount on your first order (placed within 45 days of joining).

Add all of this up with the special demonstrator prices, previews and other special perks of being a Stampin' Up! demonstrator, and it's a pretty sweet deal!

Remember, a demonstrator really only has to work as hard as she (or he!) wants to - you can stay a hobby demonstrator, buying at a discount for yourself and placing a few orders for friends (so long as you meet your - very reasonable - quarterly minimums), or go all out and aim big - the top demonstrators earn cool stuff like cash bonuses, free stamp sets and even trips to exotic locations - next year they're going to Fiji!

So contact me today to find out more - I can give you information, advice and a password to join up through my Demonstrator Business Web Site.

Sunday, May 23, 2010

My other swaps

As well as the bird swaps shown the other day, I also made a few using the Scallop Circle dress design shown recently ... how cute are these in their pink and brown spots?

Rather than stamp a border along the bottom, this time I embossed the base card using my Perfect Polka Dots embossing folder.

Love 'em!

By this time this post (which I prepared earlier) goes live, I will have returned from Sydney, hopefully with lots of goss and ideas!

Images © 1990-2010 Stampin' Up!®

Supplies used:
Stamp/s: One of a Kind
Ink: Chocolate Chip

Cardstock: Regal Rose, Chocolate Chip, Whisper White

Other: Sweet Always Designer Series Paper, Scallop Circle die, Scallop Oval Punch, Large Oval Punch, Trio Flower Punch, Whisper White 1/4" Grosgrain Ribbon, Vintage Brads, Perfect Polka Dots Embossing Folder

Friday, May 21, 2010

Springtime Dress

I love this idea! The Scallop Circle die, available in the current Autumn-Winter Mini Catalogue, has turned out to be so much more than a circle with a scalloped edge. Here it's been transformed into a cute springtime dress with a couple of snips and some ribbon.

My daughter was my "creative consultant" on this card, but I didn't take her advice and add a layer of black cardstock behind the dress. I like the simplicity of the layering, even to the point of using Bashful Blue for both the base card, the scallop oval punch around the greeting and the greeting itself. I just popped it up on dimensionals to remove it a little from the base.

The "belt" is just a strip of Whisper White 1/4" grosgrain ribbon, with a single flower from the Trio Flower punch attached with a Vintage Brad through the whole lot to finish it off.

Images © 1990-2010 Stampin' Up!®

Supplies used:
Stamp/s: One of a Kind
Ink: Bashful Blue

Cardstock: Bashful Blue, Whisper White

Other: Washington Apple Designer Series Paper, Scallop Circle die, Scallop Oval Punch, Large Oval Punch, Trio Flower Punch, Whisper White 1/4" Grosgrain Ribbon, Vintage Brads

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Heading off to Sydney!

This time tomorrow I will be in sunny (?) Sydney, ready to attend the annual Stampin' Up! Convention, where I will meet lots of other demonstrators, learn some new tips & tricks, and generally hang out with friends. This is the one time of the year I go away without the family, and while I love them to bits, it's nice to take a break.

As is customary, I have been working on swaps to exchange with other demonstrators - a good way of gathering samples and ideas which you might not have thought of. I don't make many, because I have a short attention span *g*, so I like to think of these as "limited editions" LOL.

The photo above is a little dark, so here's a closeup of the little bird's wing, which I've popped up on a dimensional. Isn't this bird punch completely gorgeous?

Wish me luck in Sydney, and with any luck I'll come back with some great new ideas to share with you!

Stamps: Simply Said, En Francais
Ink: Sahara Sand
, Real Red
Cardstock: Kraft, Basic Black, Whisper White
Other: Two Step Bird Punch, Eyelet Border Punch, Top Note Die

Monday, May 17, 2010

Chalky Medallion

I have to say, I am really liking this stamp. I read the other day that it's one of Stampin' Up!'s top sellers in the United States, and I can understand why - it's elegant, big and suits a whole bunch of different occasions.

Here I have used a technique known as Poppin' Pastels (well, that's one of its many names), where you stamp an image in Versamark (a clear, sticky ink), then apply pastels over the top with either an applicator or eye shadow sponge. The effect as you can see is quite soft and kind of fuzzy around the edges, the result of rubbing chalks over the surface of the cardstock. The colour will attach itself best to the sticky Versamark, but will also leave a residue on the cardstock next to the image.

The ribbon ... look closely ... can you tell I didn't have any matching ribbon in my stash, so I had to use Whisper White 1/4" grosgrain ribbon, coloured with a Bashful Blue marker. Piece of cake - if you have white ribbon and a bunch of markers, you can have any colour you want. Just don't get it wet LOL.

I wish the colour was a little better, so you could see just how well the new Melon Mambo goes with Elegant Eggplant, a rich dark purple.

Images © 1990-2010 Stampin' Up!®

Supplies used:
Stamp/s: Medallion Background, Warm Words
Ink: Versamark, Melon Mambo, Elegant Eggplant, Bashful Blue

Cardstock: Bashful Blue, Melon Mambo,
Elegant Eggplant, Bashful Blue, Whisper White
Other: 1-3/4" Circle Punch, 1-3/8" Circle Punch, Whisper White 1/4" Grosgrain Ribbon, Bashful Blue Stampin' Write Marker, Stampin' Pastels

Saturday, May 15, 2010

Going shopping?

Aren't these little handbags so cute? I have seen them around the internet, even made a couple in the past, but this is the first time I've put them on a card.

They are pretty easy to make - you punch out a shape with your Round Tab punch and snip in in half. The handles are made using both the Small and Large Oval punches, and the flaps are just a variety of different punches trimmed down to suit. I have used brads for the clasp.

Images © 1990-2010 Stampin' Up!®

Supplies used:
Ink: Sahara Sand

Cardstock: Sahara Sand, Night of Navy

Other: So Swirly Jumbo Stampin' Around Wheel, Patterns Pack II Designer Series Paper (Level 1 Hostess gift), Round Tab Punch, Small Oval Punch, Large Oval Punch, 1-3/8" Circle Punch, 1-1/4" Square Punch, Scallop Oval Punch, Vintage Brads

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Scallop Circle Card

Here's a nice idea for a card that's just a little different ... tired of those boring rectangular shapes? Want something "outside the box"? Try a Scallop Circle card!

The Big Shot is pretty tough (see my earlier post Big Shot Sampler) and easily takes two layers of regular cardstock, so these little round cards are a breeze to make.

I would suggest layering any decorative elements, for instance patterned paper or strips of coordinating cardstock before you cut the circle - as I found the other night when putting this together.

And see the ribbon across the top? My daughter came up with this idea when we noticed that I had accidentally caught a little nick from the scallops across the crease - so we cut an extra hole on the other side (using the edge of the Horizontal Slot punch) and camouflaged the little mistake.

Images © 1990-2010 Stampin' Up!®

Supplies used:
Stamp/s: Live Like You Mean It (Level 1 Hostess set)
Ink: Melon Mambo, Basic Gray

Cardstock: Certainly Celery, Melon Mambo, So Saffron, Whisper White

Other: Scallop Circle die, Scallop Circle Punch, 1-1/4" Circle Punch, 1-3/8" Circle Punch

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Faux Patchwork

I have been seeing these so called "quilt" or "patchwork" cards on US blogs for such a long time, and have always admired how smart they look - and finally I got around to making my own.

They are a piece of cake to make ... well, as long as you own a Big Shot and the Top Note die (yes, I do love this thing, why do you ask?)

I punched 1-1/4" squares out of the double-sided Designer Series Paper from the Petal Party Simply Scrappin' Kit, glued them down them in a pleasing pattern on a piece of Whisper White cardstock, then ran the lot through the Big Shot.

I have seen variations on this theme, where small "cross stitches" were drawn on the "seams" between each square of patterned paper, but decided to go simple this time around.

And simple it was. Also quick (well, once the glue dried *g*).

By the way, have you seen the Simply Scrappin' Kits? They're like a coordinated scrapbook in a packet - eight sheets of plain textured 12x12 cardstock (2 sheets each of 4 colours), six sheets of 12x12 double sided Designer Series Paper (3 sheets each of 2 designs) and six sheets of self adhesive die cuts, all in Stampin' Up! colours and patterns, which also coordinate with stamp sets from the Stampin' Up! catalogue.

Images © 1990-2010 Stampin' Up!®

Supplies used:
Stamp/s: Seeing Spots
Ink: Old Olive, Pixie Pink

Cardstock: Pumpkin Pie, Whisper White

Other: Petal Party Simply Scrappin' Kit, Top Note die, Scallop Circle Punch, 1-3/8" Circle Punch, 1-1/4" Circle Punch, 1-1/4" Square Punch

Saturday, May 8, 2010

Big Shot Sampler

Yesterday I worked at the Stampin' Up! stand at the Melbourne Stitches & Craft show (and a big hi to Pam, Joan, Leanne, Gail and Denise who were there with me). I spent a little time demonstrating for the passers by, and chose to use my Top Note die with the Big Shot.

Following many discussions with people about the Big Shot and what sorts of things you can put through it, I was inspired last night to scrounge through my miscellaneous craft supplies to see just what you can put through the Big Shot using the Sizzix Bigz Dies (like the Top Note die).

And here you have it. My sampler ring, also known as "Things I Put Through MyBig Shot".

From left to right, the materials I used are:

A. Light weight chipboard
B. Corrugated card
C. Metal shim (yep, this won't last very long *g*)
D. Shelf liner (the grippy stuff)
E. Felt
F. Cellophane
G. Acetate
H. Fabric
I. Fun foam
J. Plastic - the sort that quilting templates are often made of
K. Shrink plastic (which is a little hard to see because all I could find was clear - and then I shrunk it *g*).

A quick disclaimer - these materials were cut using the Top Note Bigz Die. The Originals, Bigz and Bigz XL dies are strong enough to cope with thicker materials and layers. If you are using the smaller, more delicate Sizzlits dies, you will only be able to cut thinner material like cardstock, and only in single layers.

I'm back working at the craft show tomorrow, and will be taking my little sampler ring with me for that inevitable question ... "Just what can you cut with a Big Shot?".

Saturday, May 1, 2010

Top Note Gift Card Holder

I just love my Big Shot die cutting machine, and this Top Note die specially. Sure, it makes a nice layer on a card, but when you look at it in a different light, the possibilities are practically endless!

Do a Google Image search for Top Note Die and see what I'm talking about.

The other day I came across this tutorial for a nifty little gift card holder using this die. I have made similar holders in the past, but none came out quite as classy as this one *g*. Every time I look at it I feel so darned proud of myself LOL.

I put the front of the holder back through the Big Shot using the Perfect Polka Dots embossing folder, cut out a spray of leaves with my little Little Leaves Sizzlit die, and stamped up a storm with Cottage Garden - all available in the Autumn-Winter Mini Catalogue (contact me for a copy).

The colour is totally off here ... I have adjusted it somewhat with my photo editting software, but you really can't see the gorgeous Rich Razzleberry properly (I recommend calling me to book a workshop so you can see it in person *g*).

Here's a picture of the inside of the folder - I took the instructions a step further and used the Word Window punch (carefully positioned half on the fold) inside to create a nicely shaped notch for the gift card to sit in. Of course, the punch is only a few centimetres long, so I had to punch, then slide along and punch again to create a slot the right width.

The holder is held together with pieces cut from a little self-adhesive magnet sheet - I find these are easier on cardstock that velcro, which can stick a little too agressively and cause the card to bend and crease as you try to open it.

Images © 1990-2010 Stampin' Up!®

Supplies used:
Stamp/s: Cottage Garden
Ink: Rich Razzleberry, Pink Pirouette

Cardstock: Rich Razzleberry, Pink Pirouette, Old Olive, Whisper White

Other: Large Oval Punch, Little Leaves Sizzlit, Top Note Die, Perfect Polka Dots Embossing Folder, Word Window Punch, 1-1/4" Circle Punch, 1-3/8" Circle Punch, Scallop Circle Punch


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