Monday, November 23, 2009

Featured Stamper: Karen Herrmann

One of the really great things about being a Stampin' Up! demonstrator is meeting all the other demos, who so generously share their ideas and teach you what they know! I have thoroughly enjoyed getting to know Karen Herrman, a demo from Tecumseh, this past year. She has agreed not only to allow me to post this project that she taught at our monthly area demo meeting, she even wrote up the directions! (Note the beautifully decorated envelope that makes such a card a pleasure to receive even before you open it!)

Drunken Leaves

This technique used our classic re-inkers, our Encore gold pigment ink, and either rubbing or denatured alcohol on our glossy cardstock. It is actually known as Polished Stone. Since we are making 2 cards, go ahead and do both of the glossy pieces at the same time. They will take just a few minutes to dry or you can dry them with the heat gun.

1. Using the felt and wood block or cotton ball as an applicator, soak felt in alcohol. Add a couple of drops of re-inker in each color to the felt. Tap and slightly twist the felt pad onto the glossy white cardstock. Try not to over-blend, but also be sure that you are spreading the ink around. Add a drop or two more alcohol to the felt and a drop or two of the gold ink to the felt pad and repeat. Set aside to dry for a few minutes.
2. Using all of the ink colors (clean between colors, please) and your choice of the leaf stamps, add a few stamped-off images to the Naturals Ivory piece that goes inside of the card. Attach to the inside of the card.
3. Ink one of the larger leaf images in Dusty Durango and stamp twice, on the square of Naturals Ivory cardstock.

4. Use the stamp-a-ma-jig if desired, stamp “thanks” on the square, over the leaves. Layer it onto Dusty Durango. Stamp sentiment on inside, over leaves.

5. On the Soft Suede layer, ink one of the stamps in Soft Suede and stamp it a few times around the edge, for texture.

6. Be sure the glossy cardstock is dry, then stamp a few leaves on the polished stone piece – use a couple of colors and/or images, if desired.
7. Attach polished stone piece to the front of the Soft Suede card. Use plenty of adhesive around the edge, since the paper may have a slight curve to it as it has dried.

8. With the hand held punch, punch a hole on the left side (through both layers) or where you want the ribbon’s knot to be. Using the dotted grosgrain ribbon, thread the ribbon up through the hole, from the backside…holding the “tail” that is on the front-side down, wrap the long piece of ribbon all the way around the card until you are on the backside again. Thread the ribbon up through the same hole, so both ends are now on the front side – one tail on each side of the ribbon as it goes across. Tie a half knot, adjusting the ribbon so the dots are showing, if desired.

9. Add stamped leaf, layered square to the front of the card.

Stamps: Autumn Splendor, Many Thanks

Inks: Crushed Curry, Dusty Durango, Soft Suede classic re-inkers and ink pads; Gold Encore pigment ink

Paper: Crushed Curry, Dusty Durango, Soft Suede, Naturals Ivory, Glossy White CS

Misc: Dusty Durango or Soft Suede polka dot grosgrain ribbon, Rubbing or de-natured alcohol, cotton ball or felt for an alcohol ink applicator, stamp-a-ma-jig


Thanks, Karen! This card was my first chance to use the Autumn Splendor stamp set and I'm still in love with it! Best of all, no raking necessary... Kathy

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Santa and Elf Box in a Bag

Materials: All materials are Stampin' Up unless otherwise noted.
Paper: Whisper White, Kraft, Old Olive, Real Red, Basic Black and Shiny Silver*.
Punches: Scallop Edge, Tab, Curly Label and 1/2" Circle.
Ribbon: Mistletoe Originals and Basic Black Velvet.
* Non-Stampin' Up item.

Good Morning all,
I saw these cute little guys posted on a website by Lenee Pearson and couldn't pass 'em up! Sooo cute! I have Rudolph rolling around in my head trying to figure out how I could create him. Wouldn't they make a fun trio? :) It's your basic Bag in a Box pattern then decorated up like Santa and the Elf. Stay tuned, I'm going to give Rudolph a try!

Have a great weekend!

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Christmas 1950s Style - Part 2

Here we go again with my red-and-black-and-apricot scheme! I love the fact that I've used Halloween paper to make a Christmas card, it feels somehow like "setting things right". This is a standard 4.25" x 5.5" card that hinges at the top. I've glued the Night & Day DSP and the strip of red to the apricot base, then sponged around the edges with Creamy Caramel. I've also pulled a little of the Real Red into the black and white DSP. "Joy" and the holly leaves are from SU! chipboard I had stashed, which I've simply sponged with craft ink directly. It's backed with a piece from the Christmas Cocoa DSP (mini catalog). I glued the letters to the rectangle so that I could work with them as one unit, then centered it and made a light pencil mark to position the white snowflake rub-on (another mini catalog find) before attaching the joy rectangle.

One more sneaky trick. For my "brads", I've simply used the 1/4" punch topped with a dot of Crystal Effects. You can use a drop of Tombow, a dimensional, or pop dots to adhere them, depending on how high a profile you want them to have.

Enjoy playing with this one,

All supplies Stampin' Up!

Paper: Almost Apricot, Real Red CS; Night & Day and Christmas Cocoa Specialty DSP
Ink: Creamy Caramel and Real Red classic; Real Red and Sage Shadow craft
Accessories: 3/16" black gingham ribbon, Icicle Rub-ons, Chipboard elements; Crystal Effects

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Working on New Studio Look!

I hope everyone likes the New Look!
Header Photo Credit goes to our Very Own Kathy.
Header Design Credit: I'll take credit for that one.
Background Credit: (I will have to double check on that one; I just forgot the name)
Brain Freeze:0

Take Our Poll and Let me know; Like or dislike!

Monday, November 16, 2009

Christmas 1950s Style

I was playing around with the Sweet Centers stamp set again, and realized I hadn't made anything with the ornament top... and I hadn't made anything without a treat cup! Of course one thing led to another, and this is what emerged. The color scheme of apricot, red and sage for some reason made me think of the 1950s, so I worked with that idea in mind and completed a couple of cards using the same set of materials (watch for upcoming posts).

I began with a 5x5" base, hinged at the top. After adhering my DSP (pieces from both Christmas Cocoa and Day & Night), I started sponging. I always try to "pull" a bit of the color from one section into its opposite, so here the DSP on top (and the ornament) got hit with caramel to age it (the neutral caramel is similar to the peach in tone and effect) and I "rosied up" the section of apricot base that shows at the bottom. This approach makes for a more unified look on the piece.

As I was trying out placements, I decided that the ornament by itself was a bit "flat" so I hand cut some simple holly leaves from sage scraps, sponged the edges with caramel, and added the large white snowflake rub-on as background and the smaller one as "sparkle" on the 1 3/4" circle that is the ornament (the white highlight is just a scrap of white made by using the same punch). The sentiment is embossed in white. When you attach the ornament, you could pop the center up on some dimensionals and glue the edges flat to add curvature to the surface... or not!


All supplies Stampin' Up!

Stamps: Sweet Centers and Yuletide Christmas (Holiday Mini Catalog)
Ink: Creamy Caramel and Real Red classic
Paper: Almost Apricot, Sage Shadow and Real Red CS; Night & Day and Christmas Cocoa specialty DSP
Accessories: 1 3/4" circle punch; Icicle rub-ons, Stampin' Dimensionals

Friday, November 13, 2009

Snap Cracker

Materials: All materials are Stampin' Up unless otherwise noted.
Paper: Whisper White, Real Red, Old Olive, Holiday Wrap*.
Ink: Real Red.
Stamps: Christmas Punch, Cute and Curly (Retired).
Punch: Scallop Edge, Curly Label.
Ribbon: Real Red and Old Olive 1/4" Grosgrain.
* Non-Stampin' Up products.

Hi there,
I saw these in a magazine and thought they would make a nice change to the traditional stocking stuffers. There were also some smaller ones wrapped up with striped paper and some clear cellophane to look like candy, then tucked in between the branches on the tree, super cute! I hope with the cold weather and the change of season's your getting inspired for the holiday's, they're just around the corner.


Thank You Tom

Materials: All materials are Stampin' Up unless otherwise noted.
Paper: Pumpkin Pie, Apricot Appeal, Old Olive, Real Red, Chocolate Chip, Close to Cocoa and Basic Black.
Ink: Pumpkin Pie.
Stamps: Cheery Chat and Best of Cluck (Retired).
Punches: 1/4"*, 3/4" and 1 3/8" Circle Punch, Scallop Circle and Slit.
Ribbon: 1/4" Chocolate Chip Grosgrain.
Misc.: Wiggly Eyes*.
* Non-Stampin' Up products.

Hello again,
I made these little guys as a thank you for a workshop I'm having next week. I was wanting a way to give my business card a little "wow" factor and figured you really can't go wrong with chocolate right? And, being so close to Thanksgiving I figured Tom would do nicely.
Hope you like it!

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Create a Custom Class!

Quite the motley crew, wouldn't you agree?! Three sisters, a daughter-in-law, and me. I've known the "Milligan girls" since we were in Sunday School together, so when Karen mentioned that her sisters were coming to town to celebrate Laura's birthday and they thought it might be fun to spend an afternoon playing with me in the studio, I was pretty excited! We had lots of laughs, made a bunch of cards, and generally had a great time doing something we all enjoyed. Karen's schedule is pretty hectic these days as she finishes up a degree in Conflict Mediation while working full time, so having me prep materials and teach freed her to simply enjoy the time with her loved ones.

If the idea of planning a similar activity with your extended family appeals to you, let's talk. I've got some time over Thanksgiving break that I've saved just for this purpose (who wants to stand in line on Black Friday, anyway?!).


Monday, November 9, 2009

A Thanksgiving Table

My sister is hosting the clan for Thanksgiving dinner this year, so I thought I'd put together some ideas that she might find useful. Maybe you will, too, as you're thinking about how to freshen up your holiday look.

You've seen the "tab punch punkins" in an October post - I love projects that carry over more than one season or occasion! The place card will look familiar as well. Atop the plate is a lovely swap that I received from Lisa Cool, concealing a packet of gourmet cocoa mix for some time late Thanksgiving day when all you have room for is a liquid... Another great swap is on display just above the forks. Karen Herrmann made little woven baskets from SU! wood sheets and tucked a candle inside. What a great favor or hostess giftie! Want to see more work from this great demo? Karen will be our featured stamper on November 23rd.

Did you realize that you can stamp on paper napkins? It's so quick and easy. Just grab a package of napkins in a plain coordinating color, then get out a stamp set and a classic ink pad. Ink up as usual and stamp right on your napkin!

Finally, you'll notice a little favor box that features autumn leaves. I treated myself to a new Big Shot die (Bag w/ Scallops) to help me prepare favors for a banquet seating 30. Wow, am I glad I did! All I can say is, thank heavens for sticky strip. These will be filled with my long time favorite "Dutch Mints" tied up in a little cello bag. Want to know how to get that same shimmery look on the leaves? Here's my mass production technique:

  1. Stamp Autumn Splendor leaves in Versamark on Naturals Vanilla card stock. Heat emboss in gold.
  2. Wet a cotton ball with alcohol (does not dilute the color like water). Using your reinkers, make "patches" of color appropriate to the leaves (e.g. for the Maple I used Ruby Red, Almost Apricot, and Bravo Burgundy; for the Oaks it was Soft Suede, Dusty Durango, and Crushed Curry). Pat the cotton ball once in the center of each leaf (each "loaded" cotton ball will do about 15 leaves), then continue adding color until the area inside the embossing is filled. Don't worry about "coloring outside the lines".
  3. Although I liked the vividness, I wanted to tone down the "busyness" of the color a bit, so I filled an Aqua Painter with Future floor wax and picked up a drop of ink (burgundy for the maples, Durango or Chocolate Chip for the Oaks) on the tip. I quickly drew down the spines of the leaves and "scribbled" a little on either side of this, leaving the brighter mottling to show at the edges.
  4. Using paper snips (yes, it does make a difference to your frustration levels), trim each leaf, leaving a scant 1/8" margin around the outside edge. This makes for less cutting and looks nice, too! Remember to rotate your paper while holding the scissors stationery.
  5. Lay a set of leaves and/or acorns together and punch two 1/16" holes through all layers. You will thread gold elastic cord through the flap of the bag and then through the holes in the leaf stack, tying them to the tab. Note: I am not going to detail construction of the bags themselves in this post.

Have fun pulling together your table setting - I'm convinced that proper attention to this detail makes the food taste that much better! Kathy

Saturday, November 7, 2009

Double Ball Ornament

Materials: All materials are Stampin'Up unless otherwise noted.
Paper: Bella Rose DSP and Christmas Cocoa Specialty DSP.
Punch: 1/16" Circle Hole Punch.
Ribbon: 1/8" White Satin Ribbon*.
Misc. Hat pin, small pearl bead and clear teardrop bead (Stampin' Up Pretties Kit).
* Non-Stampin' Up product.

Hello again,
Here's another tutorial I saw this week by Carol Dunstan and thought was so pretty, and can I say... sooo easy to make. Who knew with just a few strips of coordinating paper and a hat pin you can have gorgeous ornaments adorning your tree. They go together fairly quickly and the clear teardrop bead is the perfect finishing touch. When they catch the light of the tree and twinkle, you can't help but get excited for the wonder of Christmas!


Friday, November 6, 2009

Christmas Party Favors

Materials: All materials are Stampin' Up unless otherwise noted.
Paper: Whisper White, Real Red, Christmas Cocoa Speciality DSP.
Ink: Real Red.
Stamps: Christmas Punch.
Punches: Scallop Circle, Jumbo Snowflake, Wide Oval.
Ribbon: Riding Hood Red, White Satin*.
Misc. Silver Brad.
* Non Stampin' up product.

Hey there,
I saw these sweet little party favors in a tutorial by Andrea Walford and thought they were a great idea. I'm planning on using them for little treats for my co-workers. Who wouldn't like to come to work and find one of these on their desk! Just change up your paper design and you have party favors for any occasion or holiday!

Thanks for stopping by,

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Give Thanks

Stamps: Holiday Best hostess set

Ink: Soft Suede In Color Classic

Paper: Kraft CS, Pumpkin Pie CS, Razzleberry Lemonade DSP

Accessories: 1/4" Pumpkin Pie grosgrain ribbon; Wide and Small Oval punch; Designer Label punch

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

November '09 Stamp Club

For those of you who missed stamp club, I thought I'd post the project we did. Diane, ths month's hostess, requested a gift idea for co-workers that would be inexpensive and suitable for both guys and gals (not asking for much, was she?!). I thought this desktop sticky note holder fit the bill. By using DSP that coordinates with your photo, very little work is required to assemble a finished product, even if you create the "gussied up" version of the pen using microbeads (sorry they don't show up better).

Extra points for identifying the mysterious individual behind the beak and feathers... Kathy

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Cookie Sacks

Sorry No Cookies today!! Using Old with the New...

Stamps: Holiday Best (Hostess Set), Berry Christmas

Ink: Classic Real Red, Classic Basic Black and VersaMark

Paper: Naturals White CS, Certainly Celery CS, Real Red CS Retired Bella Rose DSP and Retired Ski Slope DSP

Accessories: 5/8” Sleigh Bells ribbon; Scallop square punch; Circle Scallop punch;1/4” Circle punch and 1” Circle Punch

Monday, November 2, 2009

Holly Jolly (Hostess) Santa

Puzzle Solved: Thanks to our reader Sandy, I can now refer you to the blog Vera Stamps for my original inspiration for this post. Thanks, Sandy, for taking the time to leave a comment!

Edit: I drew inspiration for this card from the web site of another SU! demo and carefully saved it on my computer for acknowledgement. Unfortunately, before I posted my version, my computer melted down and I don't know whom to credit! If this looks like something you've seen before, I'd love to know so I can give credit where it's due. -Kathy

I just love getting those FREE hostess stamp sets - and this month is an even better deal than usual for hostesses! (Can you say "Anything in the Mini for $10?" or "My Digital Studio at half price?" More deets at

One of my favorite layout tricks is "repetition with interruption". To make this card, I stamped the Santa image from the Christmas Punch hostess set four times in Real Red and four times in Old Olive onto Whisper White. I punched these out with the 1 1/4" square punch, so it was super quick! The sentiment fits perfectly within the Curly Label punch, and I like the way it interrupts the rigidity of the squares while still maintaining the grid design.

The card base is 5x5, with a panel of Real Red that measures 4.5" square (including a base panel such as this not only looks nice, it stabilizes the lighter-weight Whisper White or Very Vanilla cardstock). When adhering the Santa squares, begin at the corners, then center the middle one in the remaining space. By doing it this way, you avoid running out of space at the end of a row! The sentiment is popped up on dimensionals so that I could tuck the bow underneath slightly. I recently inherited "button boxes" from both my mom and my mother-in-law, so the jingle bells are vintage editions tied onto gold elastic cord.

A little tip for "matting" the Curly Label punch and/or the Top Note die: Cut two extra in the color you wish to use for the mat. Split one of these in half vertically, and one horizontally. Lay out each piece in matching halves, and pull the halves apart about 1/4". This causes a rim to extend beyond your top/stamped piece, and when you layer them all together with your two split pieces under your main image, you get a matted effect (there will be a little "nip in" at the corners where the two layers overlap). You may have to trim the points off where you've split the halves so they don't show from the front.

Hope you enjoy many special traditions in your "countdown to Christmas". Sometimes I think anticipation is 90% of the fun!


All supplies Stampin' Up!

Stamps: Christmas Punch hostess set

Ink: Real Red and Old Olive classic

Paper: Whisper White, Real Red CS

Accessories: 1/4" Real Red grosgrain ribbon; 1 1/4" square punch; Curly Label punch