Tuesday, 31 March 2009

Quick craft tip - cardstock tip no.1

For crisp card folds, first use a bone folder to score your card along the fold line (the cutting groove on the paper cutter will keep your fold straight). Fold the card along the fold line then run the bone folder along the length of the fold to press it in place.

Monday, 30 March 2009

Birthday card using a new stamp set from the mini catalogue

OK - I promised the other day to share with you the cards that we made at training last week, just as soon as I knew that I wouldn't spoil the surprise for others. Well it looks safe to share now.

This one's a birthday card using the deer from the new Forest Friends set out of the mini catalogue. First, "Bambi" was stamped using chocolate Chip ink on Whisper White card.  The reflection is made by stamping again onto the plastic sheet that comes with the stamp-a-ma-jig and turning it over and pressing the image down onto the card. The ink pools a little on the plastic but that helps give it a watery effect. 

Grass was added with an Old Olive marker using a piece of torn card to get the uneven effect. A Bashful Blue water colour crayon was scribbled around the reflection and then softened out with an aqua painter. The image was mounted onto Old Olive card and a semi-circle punched out with a 3/4" circle punch. A piece of So Saffron card was trimmed with the scallop edge punch and matted behind the Old Olive. So Saffron striped ribbon was tied across Chocolate Chip card and the reflected deer image added over the top with dimensionals.

Finally this was all added to a Bashful Blue card blank stamped with the Happy Birthday sentiment from the Occasional Greetings set in Chocolate Chip ink.

In the bottom left corner I've included a sneak peek at one of the other cards we made. I'll give details later in the week.

Keep Stampin'

Sara xx

Sunday, 29 March 2009

I've been tagged and here's my photo

I've been tagged by Heather. The instructions are to got to the fourth folder and post the fourth picture, then tag four more people.

Here's my pic - it's the Valetta skyline in Malta taken from the Sliema side of the harbour. 

I tag:

Saturday, 28 March 2009

Making note cards instead of using post-it notes

I've got into the habit (mainly from my day job I think, where it's general office practice) of using large Post-it notes to jot a note to friends when I'm sending them something through the post. It only really struck me a few days ago that it would be much more personal to make a quick note card to use instead. I hope to make a little set of notelets over the next week to have on hand but meanwhile here's one I made to send out yesterday.

I started with a Love Note in Very Vanilla. These are ready scored mini cards complete with envelopes but if you don't need envelopes (perhaps because it will be enclosed in a larger envelope or package) then it's very easy to cut and score your own from basic card stock. I coloured the hedgehog from the Fun and Fast Notes stamp set using markers direct to the stamp. I then stamped the image again onto a post-it note (they still have their uses you see) and cut roughly around it to create a mask. Covering the original stamped image with the mask I then stamped over the top with the Friendly background stamp using Basic Gray ink. Peel away the post-it mask and your image is now framed. Finally I added a small strip of Chocolate Chip narrow grosgrain ribbon along the bottom.

Much nicer than a simple yellow sticky I think.

Thanks for stopping by.

Sara xx

Thursday, 26 March 2009

A set of swap cards from the talented ladies at training night

On Monday night I went to a training event for Stampin' Up! demonstrators and what a fabulous night it was. Such a brilliant bunch of ladies, with so much enthusiasm, inspiration, generosity and just plain fun. Of course the night involved plenty of stamping too. I can't wait to share the cards I made with you but the training team are going around the country to other cities and I don't want to spoil any surprise for other demos. I'll post them on here as soon as I can but in the meanwhile I thought I'd share a pic of the swaps I received from some of the other demos. Some of the swaps are made with goodies and stash from the new mini catalogue. You'll love these new products and it's less than a week now until you can get your hands on them. Don't forget my offer of free postage on pre-orders placed with me during March.

Training events like the one on Monday are just one of the ways in which Stampin' Up! supports it's demonstrators. We were given lots of hints and tips for growing our businesses as well as time for networking/chatting/gossiping and the all important crafting, with make and takes for everyone. Why not join us ready for the next one?

Keep stampin'

Sara xx

Wednesday, 25 March 2009

Quick craft tip - inking tip no. 4

For inked images that won't run when watercolouring, use Stazon ink. This is a fast drying solvent ink (use in a well ventilated area).

Sunday, 22 March 2009

Elegant Mothers Day card dressed up with Pretties Kit

Now that I've given my Mum her Mother's Day card, I can share it with you. This is another large card using a full A4 sheet folded in half.

I used Mellow Moss for the card blank and used the corner rounder punch on all corners. Using the From the Garden stamp (a Level 1 hostess gift) I stamped the image using Versamark ink onto both Always Artichoke card and also onto vellum paper. Both images were heat embossed with gold embossing powder. These were cut out and paper 
pieced onto Very Vanilla card. This was then matted onto Always Artichoke card and then onto the card blank. All corners were rounded with the corner rounder punch.

Using the Happy Mother's Day sentiment from the Occasional Greetings stamp set I stamped with versamark ink onto Very Vanilla card. Gold embossing powder was added and then heat set. A hat pin decorated with vanilla pearls and crystals was added to the sentiment. Very Vanilla taffeta ribbon was tied in a bow to the end of the pin. The sentiment was matted onto Always Artichoke card with dimensionals and added to the card front, again with dimensionals. The corner rounder punch was used again on all corners.

Finally, for the inside I printed a verse directly onto Very Vanilla card. I trimmed this to fit inside, again corner rounding. Using 
Mellow Moss ink and the Forever 
Flowers Stampin' Around wheel, I stamped a border at the edge of the verse.

Hope that you've all had a great Mother's Day.

Keep Stampin'

Sara xx

Saturday, 21 March 2009

Earth Mother's Day card using gatefold design

Another very busy week for my day job - I've been busy travelling around the country, more than planned, so sorry for the lack of blog entries this week. I've just made my Mother-in-law's Mother's Day card this morning so I thought I'd share it with you.

I've used mainly tones from the Earth Elements family and I started with a card blank of Old Olive, using a sheet of A4 card folded in a gatefold design. Each half of the card front was matted with Pumpkin Pie card and one of the Haiku Designer Series Papers. Using the Happy Mother's Day sentiment from the Occasional Greetings stamp set, I stamped with Really Rust ink onto Whisper White card. I matted this onto So Saffron card and added a faux bow of Pumpkin Pie narrow grosgrain ribbon. I call this a faux bow because it is not tied, just pieces of ribbon, wrapped and stuck. The ribbon is secured with a medium rhinestone brad from the Circle Fire collection. This was matted onto Pumpkin Pie card with dimensionals. The whole was added to the left hand front of the card, again with dimensionals.

Using More Mustard ink, I stamped the trio 
of flowers from the One of a Kind stamp set onto So Saffron card and punched them out with the Boho Blossoms punch. Using just the largest flowers (and stashing the others to use elsewhere) I added brads to the centre from the Earth Elements collection. The flowers were added to opposite corners of the card with dimensionals, doubling them up for extra height on the central one.

I added an insert to the card with Very Vanilla card. The bottom of the insert was stamped with the same trio of flowers from the One of a Kind set, using So Saffron ink.

Thanks for stopping by.

Sara xx

Tuesday, 17 March 2009

Quick craft tip - using punches tip no. 5

Use your punches to create stencils. Punch the design out of cardstock or for easier positioning, out of acetate. Position the stencil over your work and sponge lightly, building the colour slowly.

Saturday, 14 March 2009

A card in spring colours to welcome my downline

I mentioned the other day that Julie is the first Stampette to join my little team. Before dashing down to London for a few days, for the work that is my day job, I made a card to welcome Julie (I also posted her a birthday card, but that was from my dwindling stock of cards that I've already blogged). I chose Certainly Celery, Bashful Blue and Lovely Lilac for all the elements, as I think they make such a cheerful spring colour combo.

I started with Lovely Lilac card as my base and matted Certainly Celery card and Bashful Blue, Patterns Designer Series Paper onto it. Using markers I stamped the leafy flower from the True Friend stamp set onto Whisper White card. I added a medium, blue rhinestone brad from the Circle Ice collection to the centre of the flower and matted onto Lovely Lilac card. Using Certainly Celery narrow grosgrain ribbon, I tied a small bow and stuck it below the main image using a glue dot. Finally I stamped the trio of flowers from the One of a Kind stamp set three times, using Lovely Lilac ink on Lovely Lilac card. I used the Boho Blossoms punch to punch them out. I added Certainly Celery brads from the Soft Subtles collection to the centre of each of the largest flowers and attached them to the card with dimensionals (saving the other flowers for a future project - waste not, want not).

Thanks for stopping by and I hope you have a great weekend.

Sara xx

Thursday, 12 March 2009

An extra 10% off the starter kit price 12th-25th March

I've mentioned the benefits of becoming a Stampin' Up! demonstrator before and now for a very limited time, there's an extra discount on the starter kit price. Instead of paying £139 to get £240 of products (a fantastic bargain to start with), if you join up any time 12th-25th March then you only pay £125 - that's almost half price.

This offer applies whether you want to become a demonstrator to run a business or just to get great discounts for yourself and your crafting friends.

What better time to join my team of Stampettes! Don't forget that I'm currently offering an extra stamp set in addition to the starter kit, if you join through me.

Email me at sarastamper123@gmail.com to sign up or ask any questions.

Sara xx

Wednesday, 11 March 2009

Anniversary card using the couple from Summer by the Sea stamp set

Before I get on to today's card I'd just like to welcome my very first team member - Julie. I've known for a few days, but now it's official, woohoo. Thank you Julie, for joining Sara's Stampettes. You'll see that she is an extremely talented lady, with a great blog already over at Julie's Crafty Corner, from which I've just learned that it was also her birthday yesterday. Happy Birthday Julie - what a week for you! I wish you lots of success in your new venture as a Stampin' Up! demonstrator and feel so lucky to have you on my team.

If you're thinking about joining Julie and me then please stop by tomorrow as I'll have a little bonus that might just make the decision for you.

Now onto 
today's card. This is another quick one using the Summer by the Sea set. 

I used Very Vanilla as my card blank. Using the couple from the Summer by the Sea set I stamped onto more Very Vanilla card using Versamark and embossed with gold powder. I did the same with the Wishing You Happiness sentiment from the 
same set. These were matted onto Creamy Caramel card before being attached to the card.

A great fix when you need an anniversary card in a hurry.

Thanks for stopping by.

Sara xx

Tuesday, 10 March 2009

Quick craft tip - inking tip no. 3

Use your inks to create a palette of matching paints. Dab your ink pad onto a clean tile or piece of acetate and use a damp paintbrush to pick up the ink and paint with it. Pick up just a little ink with a damper brush to get a lighter shade or use more ink and less water for a deeper colour. Test on a piece of scrap card for depth of shade before painting onto your masterpiece.

Monday, 9 March 2009

A couple of ATCs in red and black

I'm a little late posting tonight because I've just got a new computer and so I've been copying files across from the old to the new. I tend to get a little paranoid over backups these days as I've lost files in the past - better safe than sorry now.

These are a couple of ATCs that I made for a swap a short while ago. The red one is Ruby Red card as the base. Using the dinky heart from the Cause for Celebration set (level 2 hostess gift), I stamped with Pretty in Pink ink onto Whisper White card. This was tied with Pretty in Pink taffeta ribbon and topped with a Ruby Red heart stamped with the Polka Dot Punches heart and embossed with white embossing powder.

The black ATC was Basic Black card. Using the flower trio from the True Friend set I stamped with Basic Black ink onto Whisper White card. I sponged the edges to reduce the contrast a little. I also stamped the True Friend sentiment and matted that over the flower trio. To fill the final bit of (too white) space, I used the solo flower from the One of a Kind set.

All corners were punched with the corner rounder punch.

Keep stampin'

Sara xx

Sunday, 8 March 2009

A mini catalogue full of more Stampin' Up! goodies

Ooooooh so many great new goodies to choose from. One of the many benefits of being a Stampin' Up! demonstrator is that we get to order ahead of schedule, from the catalogues that will be coming out, so that we can make samples to show to you all. When I got a copy of the new mini catalogue, I made myself a cup of tea and sat down to start my wishlist.  It's looong. There are great new stamps, new designer series papers (including Almost Amethyst shades - one of my favourites), stripey ribbons in summer colours, christmas stamps, rub-ons, and oval punches! What a treasure trove. You can browse the mini by clicking here or on the mini catalogue image on the right hand side bar (be warned - it takes a little while to download).

You'll be able to buy  from the mini from 1 April - 30 September 2009 but I'm taking pre-orders now. I currently have my own offer (not a Stampin' Up! offer) of free postage on orders of £40 or over during March and I'm extending this to cover pre-orders (or combinations of pre-orders from the mini plus orders from the catalogue, but these will ship together after 1 April). Orders less than £40 are charged a flat rate of £3.95 postage. I need to receive cleared payment in full by 31 March and then all orders will be placed on 1st April (the earliest we're allowed) and delivery is estimated at 7-14 working days later.

If you'd like a real copy of the mini catalogue to actually hold in your hands then please email me and I'll send you one just as soon as my stock arrives.

Can you guess what I'm ordering? I'll be posting samples over the coming weeks so please stop back soon.

Bye for now.

Sara xx

Saturday, 7 March 2009

A new award for comments and support

Thanks to Heather for nominating me for this award.

I'd like to pass it on to:

Another quick card using the Summer by the Sea stamp set

Today's card is another one showing how the Summer by the Sea stamp set is perfect for creating quick cards. For this one I started with Almost Amethyst as my card blank. I stamped the boy in the boat with Elegant Eggplant ink onto Very Vanilla card. This was matted onto more Almost Amethyst and another layer of Very Vanilla. I then wrapped Elegant Eggplant narrow grosgrain ribbon around each corner and secured the whole to the front of the card with dimensionals.

Using the Happy Birthday sentiment from the Occasional Greetings set I stamped with Elegant Eggplant ink again onto Very vanilla card. This time it was matted onto Elegant Eggplant card and the whole added with dimensionals again.

Nice 'n' easy 'n' quick.

Keep stampin'

Sara xx

Friday, 6 March 2009

A sandy coloured, summery birthday card

Now I know that I haven't posted as many card ideas this week as usual. Hubby and I had the week off work and we went up to Scotland for a few days to visit relatives. The modern miracles of laptop and hotel wifi made it possible to post one or two entries but I didn't take my craft warehouse (seems like, haha) with me and so it has been a bit more limited. We're back home again now so it should be back to normal service.

I made this card for my friend's little boy for his birthday. The card blank was Summer Sun. I stamped the little boy on the beach from the Summer by the Sea set using More Mustard ink (sandy coloured) on Very Vanilla card. Using More Mustard card I used the scallop edge punch along both long edges and then scored double lines top and bottom with my Paper Cutter and Paper Folder. This gave a frame for matting the image.

I stamped the Birthday Wishes sentiment from the Circle of Friendship set using More Mustard ink on Very Vanilla card again and punched out with the 1" circle punch. I punched a 1-1/4" circle from More Mustard card and a scallop circle from Summer Sun and layered these up. Finally I created a loop of Very Vanilla taffeta ribbon, stuck this to the card and added the circles over the top using dimensionals.

Now I'm off to finish tidying the house before my in-laws arrive for dinner. Regulars to my blog will know that this means transforming my craft room back into a dining room - but don't worry, I'll have it back to crafting tomorrow!

Thanks for stopping by.

Sara xx

Wednesday, 4 March 2009

Great stamps for quick cards using the Summer by the Sea set

Some stamps are just so detailed and elegant that they don't need any extra work or embellishment. That's not to say that you can't add to them - just that they are good enough to stand on their own when you need a quick card. Sunday was just such an occasion. I realised that I'd missed my Aunt's birthday, didn't have much time for crafting (it's been busy, busy, busy lately and I'm still not getting the housework done) so I turned to a gorgeous stamp set that I've just bought - Summer by the Sea.

I started with a card blank of Pretty in Pink. Using the little girl stamp from the Summer by the Sea set, I stamped with Regal Rose ink onto Very Vanilla card. Using the Birthday Wishes sentiment from the Sincere Salutations set, I did the same. These had the corner rounder punch used on all four corners and were matted onto Rose Red card also corner rounded. I put a length of Rose Red double stitched grosgrain ribbon across the top of the card and added the image and the sentiment.

Quick, straightforward, but I think also elegant and effective. Oh, and I added an apology inside the card, for it being late.

Keep Stampin'

Sara xx

Tuesday, 3 March 2009

Quick craft tip - using punches tip no. 4

Use the "waste" from a punch by using a larger punch over the top of the design. Centre the punched out shape within the window of the larger punch and punch it out (an purposely offset design also looks good if there is sufficient space within the design). It usually works best to combine a more elaborate design with a simple one. 

Sunday, 1 March 2009

Get on Board with Chipboard - 25% off

In March you can get a whopping 25% off Stampin' Up! chipboard so now is a great time to stock up on our Letters and Bloom sets ready to embellish your cards, scrapbook pages and other projects. You can:
  •  stamp onto the chipboard
  •  layer it together for extra depth and dimension
  •  dress it up with Hodgepodge and Pretties
  •  cover it with Designer Series Paper
  •  glitter it
  •  paint it
  •  or even leave it as is, for a natural look
The new prices, just for March, are:

Page 78, Batch of Blooms on Board - was £11.75, now just £8.81
Page 78, Loads of Letters on Board - was £10.25, now just £7.69

and you can still get the same great deal on retired chipboard sets while stocks last:

Page 94, Blossoms & Basics on Board - was £11.75, now just £8.81
Page 94, Lots of Letters on Board - was £10.25, now just £7.69

Email me at sarastamper123@gmail.com to order your chipboard sets now. 

And my own special offer during March - on orders over £40 placed with me, I'll pay your postage costs (saving you a minimum of £3.95).