Friday, November 29, 2013

Joyful Christmas Sunflower Card

I've been making tons of Christmas cards lately, but I can't quite seem to bring myself to post one today.  By Monday, I'll fully be in a Christmas mood, but it's still November, so I'm going to enjoy my Thanksgiving decorations for at least one more day.  (Although I will confess that I'm pretty sure we're going to go get our Christmas tree today.)

I hadn't intended to get any new Christmas stamp sets this year.  But I've had my eye on Joyful Christmas since the Holiday catalog came out, and when the clear mount stamp was listed as part of the Holiday Sale (which is still going on!), the price was just too good to pass up on it.  I've been playing with this set for the past couple of days and have some gorgeous Christmas cards to show off in the next couple of weeks. 

Who Knew?

  • You can totally turn a poinsettia into a sunflower!  I think that an additional layer of the petals would look better (and more sunflower-like), but I used glue on this card and didn't want to mangle it in an attempt to dismantle it and add another layer.
  • Crushed Curry and Gumball Green look FANTASTIC together!  Never in a million years would I have thought to combine those two colors.  It makes me sad that Gumball Green will only be around for a few more months.
  • Maybe you knew this already, but RUN to the Clearance Rack and stock up on single color packs of Core'dinations Card stock.  That's where I found this Early Espresso paper.  It's also available in the Neutrals pack of Core'dinations Card Stock.

Stamps:  Oh Hello and Joyful Christmas
Ink:  Gumball Green Crushed Curry, and Early Espresso
Paper:   Gumball Green Crushed Curry, and Soft Suede card stock, Early Espresso Core'dinations
Accessories:  Simply Pressed Clay and Molds, Linen Thread, Gumball Green Stitched Satin Ribbon, Sanding Block, Paper Snips

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Truly Grateful Label Card

I think it should be obvious this week which products are my favorites!  But I love fall, and this is kind of my last chance to show off fall cards, because on Friday, well...let the Christmas season begin, right?

This is an upside down flip card, which I love.  It's nice to mix things up a bit and throw in some variety to one's card-making.
Tips & Tricks

  • To make the card "upside-down", simply fold the opposite way you normally would.  It's really that easy!
  • Pair up the Woodgrain Background stamp with the Woodgrain Embossing Folder.  It's a great combination!
  • Sponging the edges of the Label shape for both sides of the card adds a really soft look.  Did you know that you can cut a sponge in four pieces (like a pie) and quadruple the value?  It's actually a lot easier to use that way, too!


Stamps:  Truly Grateful, Yippee-Skippee, Gently Falling
Ink:  Early Espresso, Crumb Cake, More Mustard (retired), and Cajun Craze Classic Ink
Paper:  Crumb Cake and Very Vanilla card stock, Early Espresso Core'dinations card stock
Accessories:  Big Shot, Label Card Thinlits, Sponge, Woodgrain Embossing Folder, Sanding Block

Monday, November 25, 2013

Gently Falling Woodgrain Card

Yay!  It's Thanksgiving week!  I do love Thanksgiving, a holiday I've really only come to appreciate as an adult.  But I'll confess that I'm excited about this week for other reasons.  As I may have mentioned in the past, I homeschool my kids, and one of the very best things about that is the ability to set our own schedule.  And because we can do that, we take the entire month of December off from formal schooling (but we're always learning, because that's how life works!)  Since Thanksgiving falls so late this year, it actually marks the beginning of our break.  We've been working our tails off to get finished up before Wednesday, and it looks like once we finish up a few things today, we can start our fabulous, gigantic Christmas break!  That is what I am especially thankful for today!

So let's focus on this card for a moment, shall we?  I love the woodgrain stamp in the Truly Grateful set.  I also realized that with a little bit of help from my Stamp-a-ma-jig, it fits well with the large tag in the Chalk Talk Framelits.  That was a very exciting discovery!  And you all know how much I love woodgrain and leaves together.  I won't bore you with my gushing about that again.

Tips & Tricks

  • In order to make an embossed image pop a bit more, simply sponge a bit of ink lightly over the raised parts.  It makes a world of difference!
  • When using the leaves from Gently Falling, I always stamp off the background stamp (not the outline one).  I'm always a lot happier with the final product if I do that.  Try it out and see what you think!


Stamps:  Gently Falling, Truly Grateful
Ink:  Baked Brown Sugar, Cajun Craze, and Crushed Curry Classic Ink
Paper:  Soft Suede, Baked Brown Sugar, Naturals Ivory card stock
Accessories:  Big Shot, Chalk Talk Framelits, Woodgrain Embossing Folder, Bitty Banners Framelits, Linen Thread, Sponge

Linking up to the Fab Friday Challenge.

Friday, November 22, 2013

Prince of Peace Single Stamp Christmas Ornament

Despite the fact that I'm not at all in a hurry for Christmastime to arrive, I can't seem to help making Christmas projects.  Today I have a simple, yet very elegant ornament, that could also double as a gift tag.  In fact, that's what I'm planning to do with this one!

Tips & Tricks

  • Who doesn't love embossing?  I know I love it!  I actually tried making this with glitter instead of embossing powder, but it was just too much.  Let the simple elegance of the silver embossing powder shine on this project by making sure you've cleaned off all stray flecks before whipping out your heat tool.  This is an especially important step when embossing on a dark color as I have here with Night of Navy.
  • Chipboard is my new favorite element, but Framelits don't quite cut all the way through, especially if you've adhered Silver Glimmer Paper to it first!  A quick trim with your Paper Snips will clean up the edges and make your project look flawless. 
Every year my sister-in-law asks me to bring supplies to make a craft or ornament on Thanksgiving.  And every year I dutifully drag my supplies to her house, only to have them sit untouched the entire afternoon.  We'll have a smaller crowd this year, so I'm hoping that we'll actually get to make the ornament, and this is the one we'll be making.  Or at least the one I'll take supplies to make.


Stamps:  Prince of Peace Single Stamp
Ink:  VersaMark
Paper:  Chipboard, Silver Glimmer Paper, Night of Navy card stock
Accessories:  Big Shot, Deco Labels Framelits, Heat Tool, Silver Embossing Powder, Rhinestones Basic Jewels

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Christmas Tag

Last week I posted some Christmas tags that I made using My Digital Studio.  Today I have a tag I made with good old stamps and paper.  This one uses the Chalk Talk Framelits, and is intended to have a bit of a chalkboard look. 

Tips & Tricks

  • The chalkboard look is so easy to create...simply stamp an image or sentiment in Whisper White Craft ink on Basic Black card stock.  Then take a sponge dipped in Whisper White ink and gently dab or rub it in random spots on the card will look like erased chalk.  I added some Christmas ornaments to this to jazz it up a bit, too.
  • Stamp before cutting with your Framelits...that's the best feature of them!  Once you've stamped, you can line up your Framelits around the image, ensuring that it's perfectly straight and aligned!


Stamps:  Merry Minis (retired), Ornament Keepsakes, Christmas Greetings (retired)
Ink:  Real Red, Garden Green, and Whisper White
Paper:  Whisper White and Basic Black card stock
Accessories:  Big Shot, Holiday Ornaments Framelits, Chalk Talk Framelits, Merry Minis Punch Pack, Cherry Cobbler Baker's Twine, sponge

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Holiday Sale

Woohoo!  Be sure to check out this awesome list of discounted products that will go on sale beginning tomorrow, November 20.  A few items will be discounted at 30% off for only 24 hours, so if you've been wanting the new trimmer, the diagonal scoring plate, or even our Many Marvelous Markers, be sure to contact me or place your order through my online store tomorrow!

Monday, November 18, 2013

Thanksgiving Place Cards

So last week I took a little blogging break.  It wasn't intentional, but definitely necessary.  Last week was insane, and my stress levels were through the roof.  So hopefully you'll forgive me for not posting...I just didn't have the time or creativity to come up with any projects to post.

This week I'll have a couple of non-card projects to show you.  Today is a simple, hand-stamped place card.  Since this one features a woodsy look in fall colors, it's perfect for Thanksgiving.  And if I were going to host Thanksgiving dinner, I'd probably consider putting these on the table.  OK, that's a total lie, because as an introvert, finding out that I have to sit next to someone other than my husband is terrifying to me.  Since I hate being assigned a seat, there's no way I'd do that to someone else.  However, there are definitely situations where place cards are appropriate, and maybe Thanksgiving is that time for you and your guests. 

Tips & Tricks

  • You don't always have to use a background stamp in the vertical position.  For this card, I turned the Woodgrain background stamp so the grain is actually going across my card, instead of up and down.  I much prefer it this way!
  • Let's talk about alphabet stamps...I give you permission to NOT line up your letters perfectly when spelling out a name or word.  In fact, I was trying to keep this casual and didn't want the letters to look perfect.  The haphazard placement of the letters in my name give it a relaxed, hand-made look, which is exactly what I wanted.


Stamps:  Woodgrain, Gently Falling, Classic Alphabet (retired)
Ink:  Crumb Cake, Early Espresso, Cajun Craze, and Crushed Curry 
Paper:  Soft Suede and Very Vanilla card stock
Accessories:  paper snips, brayer

Monday, November 11, 2013

My Digital Studio Christmas Tags

Whether you want to believe it or not, Christmas isn't that far away.  Have you started getting ready?  I tend to shop through the year, but I still have lots of sewing to do, and cards to make.  I may end up with a mix of Christmas cards this year, just to keep it interesting.

One thing I always hand stamp each year are tags for gifts.  But I'm usually doing that at the last minute, and I get a little frazzled.  I think I've found a way to avoid that extra stress...making tags using My Digital Studio.

These photos show the front and back of a tag I made in about five minutes using MDS.  When a new project opened, I chose the Designer Templates, and then selected tags.  For this one, I went with the square tag, and used the Piece of Cake template.  But that's a birthday tag, and I wanted Christmas.  I simply swapped out the background papers, changed the text on the front, and swapped out the colors.  I also added a couple of ornaments to the back.  And seriously, five minutes.  I'm not kidding.  And the best can all be customized to your favorite colors.  Or, if you are a serious type-A personality like me, to colors that match your wrapping paper.  Sadly, I'm not kidding about that, either.

My Digital Studio Downloads:  Piece of Cake tags template, Be of Good Cheer digital kit, and Tree Trimmings stamp set

Friday, November 8, 2013

Home Decor Using My Digital Studio AND Stamps!

No matter how hard I tried, I could NOT get a good picture of this project.  That probably has something to do with the fact that I was taking pictures at night instead of during the day.  But I knew that if it didn't happen last night, it wouldn't happen at all today, and I really wanted to make sure I posted this today!

This is a cool hybrid project that uses My Digital Studio AND stamps and ink.  I know I've already mentioned that I love the Autumn Spice Designer Series Paper, and sadly, it's retired.  I especially love it with the Day of Gratitude stamps.  What's a girl to do when she's out of her favorite paper?  MDS to the rescue!  I use the Autumn Spice download, and created a single scrapbook page with it.  I selected the striped paper you see here as the background for my page.  I then typed the text of Psalm 100 and centered it on the page.  I did have to take into account that my frame is an 8x10, while the page is 8-1/2 x 11.  That's nothing a little trimming can't fix.  At that point, I was done, and printed out my page onto Whisper White card stock.

Next I just went crazy stamping lots and lots of leaves in my favorite fall colors.  I resurrected More Mustard for this one, and was reminded just how much I miss that color.  I'm sorry, but as lovely as Crushed Curry is, it's no replacement for the perfect fall yellow. 

And if you're wondering if I cut all those leaves out, the answer is yes, yes I did.  And my hand still hurts.  I tied a few scraps of ribbon around the frame (TIP:  tie the ribbon loosely so there's room for the glass and backing to fit in the space!)  Then I used my sanding block to rough up the frame a bit.  It had been a hideous blue and unfortunately the only black paint I had was some high gloss spray paint.  It needed some distressing to tone down that shine!  And that was it.  It's now sitting on my piano and I love it.  It really adds some pizazz to that area of my home this Thanksgiving season.


Stamps:  Day of Gratitude (retired) 
Ink:  Cajun Craze, More Mustard (, Old Olive, and Soft Suede
Paper:  Whisper White and Very Vanilla Card Stock
Accessories:  PAPER SNIPS.  Ok, and some retired ribbon and the MDS download, Autumn Spice :)

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Christmas Craft Class for Kids

This class will offer your children a way to create beautiful projects that they can give as gifts.  The projects this year will include two cards (and not just any in particular has a definite wow factor!), an ornament, and then a third surprise project.  (If you would really like to know what this project is, just email me.  I am not describing it here in the event that your child wants to surprise YOU with that gift!)

Dates:  Monday, December 9 OR
             Tuesday, December 10, OR
             Thursday, December 12, OR
             Friday, December 13
Ages:  7+
Time:  1-3 pm
Cost: $10, paid in advance no later than Wednesday, November 11.
Location:  my home

This class is for ALL kids (both boys and girls) ages 7 and up.  If there is interest in holding a class for little kids, I will consider adding a separate one.  Just let me know if you are interested in that option.

Also, this is a drop-off class, as I do not have space for moms to hang out.  If you have any concerns, please feel free to email me privately at a_l_stoudt @  (no spaces).

Any questions?  Please let me know!  This is always a lot of fun for both the kids and for me, so I’m looking forward to helping your children make these projects!

Monday, November 4, 2013

My Digital Studio

I decided to mix things up a bit today and post a card I made in My Digital Studio.  I tend to prefer to make cards the old-fashioned way, with paper and stamps.  But every now and then I sit down to play with MDS.  One of the best features (at least in my opinion!) is that none of the digital downloads retire.  This card features two of my favorite products:  Autumn Spice Designer Series Paper and the Day of Gratitude stamp set.  Both of those are retired, but not in MDS!  I love that I can still play with my favorite paper, which is exactly what I did here. 

Check back later this week when I'll have a fun hybrid home decor project that uses regular stamps and card stock in addition to My Digital Studio!