January 31, 2013

The 12 Kits of Holidays--January 2013

To see my CASE Study post, please scroll down!


Hello again!  I've got another fun post to share with you today.  If you've been coming around here for a while, you know that in 2012 I partnered with 11 fellow stampers to bring you The 12 Kits of Christmas.  Each month, we create cards and projects for Christmas (and Hanukkah!) using the same supplies.

This year brings a few changes, including the addition of two new crew members, Tracey McNeely and Kelly Schirmer.  Please give them a warm welcome, as I'm sure you'll enjoy their creations as much as I do.  :)

The other change for 2013 is that we'll be featuring lots of different holidays and occasions, not just Christmas!  There will still be plenty of Christmas inspiration throughout the year, with winter holiday kits every other month, but we'll also be bringing you ideas for Valentine's Day, Easter, birthdays, thank yous, fall holidays, and more.

Our first hostess for 2013 is Joyce, who provided us with a darling Valentine's kit full of goodies.  Fabulous papers, ribbons, and die cuts galore.  Behold:

Photo by Kara

I'd hoped to create a few more cards this month, but prepping to teach my very first class at the college drained most of my mojo over the last couple of weeks.  Lucky for me I have lots of supplies left to make several more projects before Valentine's Day arrives.  :)

On to the cards!  I've been smitten with this Memory Box die since it came out, so I had to reach for it first.

Cardstock:  Papertrey Ink (Hawaiian Shores, Pure Poppy, White)
Stamps:  Papertrey Ink (Heart Prints), WPlus9 Design Studio (Love You More)
Ink:  Stampin' Up! (Real Red)
Tools:  Memory Box (Piestra Tile die), WPlus9 Design Studio (envelope dies), Papertrey Ink (heart dies)

Using some strips of the My Mind's Eye papers in the kit, I think this simple little number is my favorite.

Cardstock:  Stampin' Up! (Poppy Parade)
Patterned paper:  My Mind's Eye (Lucky in Love)
Tool:  Papertrey Ink (XO border die)
Accessories:  buttons, DMC floss

This next one is a CASE of a card by Suzanne from last year's November kit.

Cardstock:  Papertrey Ink (Sweet Blush, White)
Patterned paper:  My Mind's Eye (Lucky in Love)
Stamps:  WPlus9 Design Studio (Love You More)
Ink:  Stampin' Up! (Real Red)
Tool:  Spellbinders (Labels 18 die)
Accessories:  button, DMC floss

Perhaps this last one is too simple, but I like it a lot.  I left off the embellishments since the sentiment and paper are fairly busy.

Cardstock:  Papertrey Ink (Pure Poppy, White)
Patterned paper:  My Mind's Eye (Lucky in Love)
Stamp:  WPlus9 Design Studio (Love You More)
Ink:  Stampin' Up! (Real Red)
Tool:  Spellbinders (Labels 4 die)

What do you think of the new 12 Kits format?  We hope you'll enjoy finding inspiration for lots of different holidays and occasions in the coming year!

Time to hop around to see what the rest of the gals have come up with!

Joyce: Cards-by-the-Sea
Renee: ItsAPatchworkLife
Tracey: InMyCreativeOpinion

Sharron: OnPapillionWings
Jeanne: AKeptLife
Amy: Stamp-n-Paradise
Kim: CupcakesCardsandKim
Kara: KandRDesigns
Kelly: GinghamGirl
Jessica: The Paper Parade

Thanks so much for visiting!

CASE Study #126


Happy, happy Thursday, friends!  Why am I so happy it's Thursday?  Well, it means I survived teaching my very first class yesterday (hooray for me!), and it means I'm home from work to go to my little guy's parent-teacher conference.  I might even work in some stamping time.  :)  What's making you happy today?

How's this for another reason to celebrate Thursday:  it's CASE Study time!  Lucky for us, we have one more week of inspiration from our January Muse, Amber of Damask Love.  This week's offering is a chic and sophisticated set of notecards:

By Amber Kemp-Gerstel

Seeing that pretty quatrefoil pattern reminded me of the Lush paper from My Mind's Eye that I've been hoarding for so very long, and it gave me a chance to make good on my promise to use more patterned paper.

Notice the distressing around the edges?  Yep, I pulled out some tea dye and sponged away.  I think it adds character.  To the card, anyway.  :)

Cardstock:  Papertrey Ink (Vintage Cream)
Patterned paper:  My Mind's Eye (Lush Pink)
Stamps:  My Favorite Things (Lovey Dovey Sentiments)
Ink:  Stampin' Up! (Chocolate Chip), Papertrey Ink (Chai tea dye)

Spread some love to the rest of the CASE Study crew, then try your hand at this week's challenge!  And don't forget to thank Amber for inspiring us throughout the month of January.

LOTS of good things to come in the next several days, so stay tuned, my friends.  You won't want to miss any of it!  *wink*

Have a happy Thursday!

January 25, 2013

CFC87--Make Your Mark


Happy Friday!  What a week it's been.  I'm definitely in need of some time to craft away my stress this weekend.  Anyone else with me?

I hope you'll make some time for a new CAS-ual Fridays challenge!  Your assignment this week:  use markers on your clean and simple creation.  Easy peasy!


I chose a small image from a CAS-ual Fridays Stamps set, Casual Elegance, stamping it repeatedly to make a floral border.  I used several shades of green and turquoise Copic markers to color the flowers in a gradient, which came out looking a bit like stained glass.

On a turquoise card base, I heat embossed the sentiment in white, then stamped and colored three more flowers, adding green gems to the centers.

Cardstock:  Papertrey Ink (Hawaiian Shores), WPlus9 Design Studio (White)
Stamps:  CAS-ual Fridays Stamps (Casual Elegance)
Ink:  Memento (Tuxedo Black), Versamark, Copic markers
Tool:  We R Memory Keepers (Corner Chomper)
Accessories:  Filigree (embossing powder), rhinestones

Pay a visit to the CAS-ual Fridays blog to see more inspiration from the Girl Fridays, then break out those markers!

Have a great start to your weekend!

January 24, 2013

CASE Study #125


Happy Thursday, CASE Study fans!  Aren't you loving the inspiration from our January Muse, Amber of Damask Love?  I know I am.  :)  This week's challenge is to CASE this kraft beauty:

By Amber Kemp-Gerstel
It just so happens that I have this U.S. stamp from A Muse Studio that hasn't seen enough ink, so I heat embossed it in white on a kraft panel.  After sprinkling the stamped image with embossing powder and tapping off the excess, I pressed an un-inked heart stamp into the powder to remove it.  I used a small paintbrush to remove the stray powder, then heat embossed the entire image and colored the heart with a Copic marker.

The tweed texture on the background is a nod to the corrugated texture on Amber's card, and I added pops of red with the heart, sentiment, and air mail strips framing the image.

Cardstock:  Papertrey Ink (Kraft)
Stamps:  A Muse Studio (Wish You Were Here), Papertrey Ink (Postmarks)
Ink:  Stampin' Up! (Real Red), Versamark, Copic marker
Tools:  Lifestyle Crafts (embossing folder)
Other:  Filigree (embossing powder)

I hope you'll join us this week at CASE Study!

Thanks for visiting!

January 21, 2013

Dream...then Do


Hi friends.  I intended to get this post up a little earlier, but we had a fun family day of ice skating.  :)  We were fortunate to have the day off from work and school in honor of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.'s birthday.

Thinking of Dr. King today, I decided to make a card using a sentiment from CAS-ual Fridays Stamps new set, Casual Elegance.  To me, this sentiment captures the essence of Dr. King's legacy.  It is not enough to dream of a better tomorrow; we must commit ourselves to making those dreams a reality.

Cardstock:  Papertrey Ink (Vintage Cream), Stampin' Up! (Island Indigo)
Patterned paper:  My Mind's Eye (Lost & Found Two: Breeze)
Stamp:  CAS-ual Fridays Stamps (Casual Elegance)
Ink:  Stampin' Up! (Island Indigo)
Tools:  My Favorite Things (polaroid die, star border die)
Accessories:  Michaels (star gems), seam binding, thread

I have a few dreams of my own for the coming year.  One of the more meaningful ones is to engage in more volunteer work, especially once my son starts all-day Kindergarten in the fall.

Another dream of mine?  To see my patterned paper stash diminish.  :)  I tried to put a teensy dent in it with this card, but I have a long way to go.

What are your dreams?  I'd love to hear.  :)

Thanks for stopping by today.  Have a great start to your week!

January 18, 2013

CFC86--Long and Short


TGIF!  I think I say this every week, but I'm so happy the weekend is finally here.  :)  And to start it off on the right foot, how about a new challenge at CAS-ual Fridays to spark your creativity?


This week's theme is Long and Short--create a clean and simple card with one long side and one short side, such as 3 x 6 or 4 x 8.

I saw this as the perfect opportunity to ink up one of the vine images in CAS-ual Fridays Stamps newly released set, Casual Elegance.  I stamped it twice to cover the length of my card.  After shading the leaves with Copics, I cut around each one with a craft knife so I could pop them up.  I love the dimension this adds to the image as well as the peek at the color under each leaf.

I chose a sentiment from another new CFS set, Loving Thoughts, to stamp along the top edge of the strip.

Cardstock:  Papertrey Ink (Berry Sorbet, Vintage Cream)
Stamps:  CAS-ual Fridays Stamps (Casual Elegance, Loving Thoughts)
Ink:  Stampin' Up! (Island Indigo), Copic markers
Other:  Queen & Co. (rhinestone)

The Girl Fridays have rocked the challenge, as always, so hop over to the CAS-ual Fridays blog for your weekly dose of inspiration!

I appreciate your visit today!  Have a great weekend, friends!

January 17, 2013

CASE Study #124


Hello again!  It's time for another week of inspiration from our January Muse at CASE Study, Amber of Damask Love.  Take a look at this sweet little ensemble:

By Amber Kemp-Gerstel
Those cute bottles lined up on Amber's card made me think of PTI's Gracious Vases, which I hadn't used in quite a while.  I stamped the open vases across a white panel in gray ink, then added color to one vase using the coordinating solid stamp.

After adding some green and yellow foliage, I stamped the sentiment in black and popped the panel up with foam dots on a green card base.  Yes, I used the Linen & Canvas plate again to add texture to the card front.  I can't help myself.  :)

Cardstock:  Stampin' Up! (Pear Pizzazz), WPlus9 Design Studio (White)
Stamps:  Papertrey Ink (Gracious Vases)
Ink:  Stampin' Up! (Pear Pizzazz, So Saffron, Basic Gray), Memento (Tuxedo Black)
Tool:  Papertrey Ink (Linen & Canvas impression plate)

Do yourself a favor and head over to the CASE Study blog to see what the rest of the Design Team has come up with this week!  I hope to see your entry in the gallery, too.  :)

Thanks for visiting!

January 16, 2013

CAS-ual Fridays Stamps Sneak Peek--Rad



Sneak peek week continues on the CAS-ual Fridays Stamps blog!  Today's featured set, which will be available on January 18, is a graphic set that you will turn to again and again for those hard-to-make masculine cards, especially the young men in your life.

I just used some of the fantastic mix-and-match words in this set to make a birthday card for my brother.  I first made a panel of cardstock strips, die cut a star from the center, then added some texture to the panel with an impression plate.

After stamping the "totally epic" sentiment through the star opening onto the card base, I impressed a smaller star on top of it.  Instead of added dimensional embellishments like buttons or pearls, I kept the design flat and masculine by punching circles in the top panel before adhering it with foam dots.

Cardstock:  WPlus9 Design Studio (Oatmeal, Lake House), Papertrey Ink (Pure Poppy, Terracotta Tile), Stampin' Up! (Early Espresso)
Stamps:  CAS-ual Fridays Stamps (Rad)
Ink:  Stampin' Up! (Early Espresso)
Tools:  Papertrey Ink (star dies, Linen & Canvas impression plate), hole punches

Check out all of the fabulous samples up today on the CAS-ual Fridays Stamps blog!

January 14, 2013

CAS-ual Fridays Stamps Sneak Peek--Loving Thoughts


Hi friends!  I have two special cards to share today.  This week we're bringing you sneak peeks of the newest CAS-ual Fridays Stamps to be released on January 18th.  You can find all of the details about the schedule of events, including the sneak peeks and prizes, on the CAS-ual Fridays Stamps blog.


Today's cards were made with a new set called Loving Thoughts.  For the first card, I did some masking with a Post-it note and stamped a frame using one of the flower images in the set.  I just love how it turned out!  I nestled one of the sentiments in the corner, added a pierced frame, and mounted the panel with foam dots on a square of plum cardstock.

Cardstock:  Papertrey Ink (Vintage Cream), Stampin' Up! (Perfect Plum)
Stamps:  CAS-ual Fridays Stamps (Loving Thoughts)
Ink:  Stampin' Up! (Rich Razzleberry)

My second card uses the floral images in a more traditional way, stamped onto a kraft card base with a masked strip for the sentiment.  I love the look of the red, black, and white stamped onto kraft.


I selectively inked the sentiment to make the word "love" stand out and added scored lines on either side.

Cardstock:  Papertrey Ink (Kraft)
Stamps:  CAS-ual Fridays Stamps (Loving Thoughts)
Ink:  Stampin' Up! (Real Red), Memento (Tuxedo Black), Clearsnap (Frost White)
Tool:  Martha Stewart Crafts (scoring board)

Don't forget to visit the CAS-ual Fridays Stamps blog to see more creations by the Girl Fridays with this new set.

Thanks for stopping by today!  I hope your week gets off to a great start.


January 13, 2013

Stamps for Sale--Updated

Please check out my updated Stamps for Sale page for some new offerings!  More to come later in the week, so please check back!

January 11, 2013

CFC85--Round of Applause


Hooray!  We made it to the end of the week!  LOL!  I'm looking forward to some fun activities with my family this weekend.  What do you have planned?

After taking a break last week, I'm back for this week's CAS-ual Fridays challenge.  Our theme is Round of Applause:  include at least one circle in your clean and simple design celebrating an accomplishment.


CAS-ual Fridays Stamps is sponsoring our challenge this week, so we're giving you a little preview of some of the goodies you have to look forward to in the next release.  :)

I decided to make a card for a male teen, which called for a graphic design, complementary colors of teal and orange, and a simple sentiment.  I'm guessing there are many teenage boys who would find the words "congratulations" or "way to go" totally uncool, but "epic" seemed appropriate.  :)

In case you can't tell, the circles with the open arrows are popped up on foam dots, while the last circle is punched in the teal panel with the orange arrows and sentiment stamped in the negative space.

Cardstock:  Stampin' Up! (Island Indigo)
Stamps:  CAS-ual Fridays Stamps
Ink:  Stampin' Up! (Tangerine Tango, Chocolate Chip)
Tools:  EK Success (circle punch), Papertrey Ink (Linen & Canvas impression plate)

We'll be sharing more sneak peeks of the new CFS sets starting January 14th!  In the meantime, visit the rest of the Girl Fridays to see what they have up their sleeves, then enter your creation in the gallery for a chance to win a fantastic prize from CAS-ual Fridays Stamps!

Thanks for stopping by!  Have a great weekend!

January 10, 2013

CASE Study #123


Well, hello CASE Study fans!  You're in for a treat today.  We have a new Muse for the first month of the new year, and it's none other than Damask Love's Amber Kemp-Gerstel!  For those of you who follow Amber (and if you don't, you should), you know that her clean and professional style is unmistakeable.  Here's the eye candy she's offering up as inspiration for this week's challenge:

By Amber Kemp-Gerstel

Now friends, I have a confession to make.  I wasted used way too much cardstock trying to get this idea on paper.  I tried every trick in the book to stamp in nice, straight lines, but it still looks wobbly.  I guess that's what I get for stamping while medicated.  LOL!  But having used all that cardstock in the process, I wasn't about to toss the whole thing, so here it is.

Stamps are from WPlus9's Love You More, using Real Red ink and the generation stamping technique.

Cardstock:  WPlus9 Design Studio (White)
Stamps:  WPlus9 Design Studio (Love You More)
Ink:  Stampin' Up! (Real Red), Memento (Tuxedo Black)

I'm just smitten over the rest of the DT samples this week, so be sure to visit them to get your creative juices going.

Happy Thursday, everyone!

January 9, 2013

January Cloud9 Blog Hop


Hello!  Boy, am I glad to be back.  We got home from our road trip last weekend just in time for my lingering cold to turn into bronchitis, so I've been taking it easy and trying to catch up on rest for the last few days.  I'm always reluctant to take antibiotics, but last night was the first decent night of sleep I've had for a while, so I guess it's worth it.  :)

Enough about me, who's ready for a new Cloud9 Blog Hop?  This month we're celebrating New Year's with a gorgeous inspiration photo from the blog Whimsy.


Photo from Whimsy
I pulled lots of elements from the photo for my card:  the manilla tag, the Scrabble tiles, silver stars, sheet music, kraft, and black and white accents.  I needed a birthday card for a friend who happens to love Scrabble, too, so I focused on making something I thought she might like.

This card is a bit of a departure from my usual style.  I love cards with an eclectic mix of elements but have a hard time pulling off that look myself.

Cardstock:  Papertrey Ink (Kraft), WPlus9 Design Studio (White), Michaels (silver shimmer)
Stamps:  WPlus9 Design Studio (A Pocketful:  Halloween, Super Star, A Pocketful, Postmarked)
Ink:  Memento (Tuxedo Black), white pen, silver glitter pen
Tools:  Papertrey Ink (star die)
Other:  EK Success (Scrabble stickers), manilla tag, vintage sheet music, silver thread, twill ribbon

Okay friends, it's time to link up your take on the photo at the Cloud9 blog!  You'll find more inspiration from the team, including this month's Guest Designer, to help you get started.

Thanks for stopping by for a visit!  Have a great day!
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