Life is Grand

Happy Monday stampers. Life is grand! It is easy to say that when things are going well, but you have to dig a little deeper to say it and mean it when things are not going well. But life is grand. We need to live every moment, to take joy in the little things because sometimes there are only little things. Today as I was driving home from pickleball I noticed how the sunlight was glinting off the Thames River that runs through town. Now the Thames is not a very pretty river. It is usually muddy brown, but when the sun is glinting off it, wow, it sure does look beautiful. Now I am going to talk about the stamp set Life is Grand. What makes this stamp set so appealing to me is first that the font is large and flowy. Second, it is a distINKtive stamp, which means it shows up ombre, or in at least two colours and that really has a wow effect without you having to do anything for it. It is also not a fussy distINKtive stamp. Doesn’t matter if your ink pad is juicy, it will still give you that beautiful effect. Let’s take a look.


Memories and More card with Painted Seasons paper and Life is Grand stamp set


Here you get a closeup glimpse of the beautiful lettering. This was done in Real Red, my favourite colour. I absolutely love it with Granny Apple Green. You probably recognize the frog from So Hoppy Together. You can get this beauty for free with a $60 purchase until March 31. Time is running out!! The toadstool is from a gorgeous set in the annual catalog called Sweet Storybook.


So Hoppy Together joins with Life is Grand and Sweet Storybook with Painted Seasons paper


I love everything about this card and I don’t even feel bad saying that even though I designed it myself and am tooting my own horn. This card just makes me feel happy when I look at it. I love, love, love the paper and sadly it is only available until March 31 as a free saleabration item, so if you love it even half as much as I do, you want to make sure you get it. If you live anywhere in Canada you can order through my online store. If you use the host code I will love you just a little bit more and send you a card to thank you. Well, let’s be real, you will get a card regardless because I believe that you deserve to be thanked if you give me your business. The toadstool (or mushroom) is from the set Sweet Storybook. I stamped the base on the white “band” of paper and then I stamped again and cut out just the top of it so that I could have it sticking out above the white band. I love the effect of that and it wasn’t difficult to do. I coloured the grass and the frog with our Blends. They are a wonderful product and at $6 each they are just slightly more expensive than our markers and infinitely better. One last thing to crow about with this card:  the patterned paper is cut exactly to 4″ by 6″ which makes it perfect for #loveitchopit. You can get six card fronts out of one 12×12 piece of paper with no waste. It then fits on our Memories and More cards which measure 4 1/4″ by 6 1/4″ and come with their own envelopes. So fast, so easy. The white strip measures 1 7/8″ by 6″.


Wood Textures paper, Life is Grand and Painted Seasons paper


Don’t you just want to touch your screen right now to feel those letters? Stamped in tranquil tide on Painted Seasons paper, they just pop off the page. I combined it with Wood Textures Paper covering the entire card front. Since the Wood Textures paper comes in 6 x 6 I didn’t feel bad cutting it to 5 1/2″ by 4 1/4″. You can use the remaining bits to decorate the inside of your card if you don’t want to waste it. Another great example of a #loveitchopit card.


Life is Grand in tranquil tide with Painted Seasons paper and Wood Textures paper


I love the effect of stamping on the patterned paper. This works especially well when it is muted background rather than a busy pattern. Both papers are from Painted Seasons, the same set as the bright and colourful paper on the first card. This card would be great for a man, even though it has a linen thread bow. Nothing can come close to our linen thread, and now you can get it in old olive as well.


Painted Seasons bundle, free with Saleabration until March 31


Here you can see the beautiful paper and the stamp set. You can get them free as a bundle with a $120 purchase or you can get just the paper with a $60 purchase. Let’s take a look at my last card. It doesn’t use this paper or the stamp set but it does use Life is Grand as well as So Hoppy Together.


Life is Grand with So Hoppy Together and the balloon punch.


Oh Granny Apple Green, how lovely you are, both on the lettering and on the frog. One of the things I have always loved so much about Stampin’Up! is the colour coordination. It makes it so very easy to take your cards from nice to stunning. On this card the ink pad, the cardstock and the Blends all match. The balloons were punched out with grapefruit grove and lovely lipstick foil paper and bermuda bay glimmer paper which I believe is still available on the clearance rack. I adhered the bakers twine to the balloons and to the frogs “hand” using our mini glue dots, also the very best in the industry. Just ask my class attendees who have brought “contraband”. Now they are believers too!!


I really hope that you get all you can out of the saleabration promotion which ends on March 31, which is Sunday. I have room for you on my team, and all my customers are also greatly appreciated. Thanks so much for stopping by, I hope you have a super day! Hugs from Chatham, Ontario.


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Artfully Aware Meets Brusho Paint Crystals

Happy Friday stampers. I just want to create a relatively short post today featuring Artfully Aware. After my Brusho class the other day I wanted to play a little more before I cleaned up. I wanted to use Artfully Aware because I love the artwork but I also love the artist behind it (Janet Wakeland) and her story for creating this set. This stamp set is in honour of her mom who is struggling with Alzheimer’s and the other images are her children and her husband. The message is that we need each other throughout the struggles of life and we can use our art to help ease the hurt and to celebrate the good.


Brusho blue sky on watercolour paper


The people look like they are sitting on a grassy knoll with a stormy sky overhead. The bright green grass gives a hopeful feel to this scene. The card front is watercolour paper. The images were stamped in versamark first using the Stamparatus and then heat embossed in white and black. This gives a nice raised image that helps keep the colour where it needs to be. It is important to use the Stamparatus when stamping on watercolour paper because you usually need to stamp more than once to get sufficient coverage as watercolour paper is a bit rough. I coloured the grass and the people with an aqua painter and ink. Then I spritzed the sky area with water and sprinkled on Prussian Blue Brusho holding the card at an angle to keep the water away from the people. I used an aqua painter to spread the blue close to the stamped image. I really love the effect.


The next cards have nothing to do with Artfully Aware. I just had leftover pieces from my class and wanted to do something a little different. I wanted to do more blue backgrounds and I also incorporated the butterfly from Springtime Expressions thinlets. I used the floral image to emboss the background for a subtle effect.


Prussian Blue and Yellow Brusho for the background


It isn’t the crispest picture, but I am in a time crunch and it will have to do. You can see the Springtime Expressions floral framelit embossed in the background. This one is done on shimmery white cardstock and the words and thinlet come from the Well Said bundle. The big butterfly is also from Springtime Expressions. The other two are from the Beauty Abounds bundle. I love Brusho for backgrounds don’t you?


Beauty Abounds and Brusho


For this card I did another Prussian Blue Brusho background. I had used the thinner embossing mat to emboss the background in this one and it is quite subtle. The previous card used the thicker mat and I do like it better. The butterflies were cut from a piece of shimmer white cardstock which was first spritzed with water and then sprinkled with ALL the Brusho colours that Stampin’Up! carries. You then spritz with water again and the colours flood together a bit. You can control the mix of colour by dabbing with a paper towel to absorb the extra water.


I hope you enjoyed this little bit of Brusho inspiration. If you want to get messy and feel like a kid again, buy some Brusho, some watercolour paper and some shimmer white and have fun. You will love it!! I will happily have you and your friends over for a private session as well. Have a super day and thanks for stopping by,


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Paper Pumpkin Blissful Blooms

Hello stampers. Do you like to treat yourself once in a while? I know I do. Sometimes it is a lovely bunch of tulips or a fun magazine or takeout sushi. You all know that I stamp and make cards as my business. Not many days go by without ink on my fingers. And yet who would think that I would want to treat myself to more stamps, ink and paper! Well….meet Paper Pumpkin!


You would be surprised that I very much look forward to getting my Paper Pumpkin every month. Do you know why? It is called “instant gratification”. Inside that little red box is a surprise. There is a stamp set, an ink spot (mini ink pad) and whatever paper and embellishments I need to make a stack of cards. Once in a while it might be some other paper crafting option. A mini calendar, treat bags or a framed art piece. I don’t have to think, I don’t have to decide, I just follow the instructions and create.


Paper Pumpkin Blissful Blooms is a beautiful kit with lovely cards, embellishments and stamps. I have created a class for you to introduce you to the beauty and simplicity of Paper Pumpkin. There will also be door prizes and great food. There is no need to be a Paper Pumpkin subscriber to come to the class and there will be no pressure to become one either. It is just a fun class that shines the spotlight on this wonderful product. The benefit of me telling you this now is that if you do choose to get a three month prepaid Paper Pumpkin subscription before March 31, then you will also qualify for a free saleabration item. How wonderful is that?  Let’s take a look at what I did with Paper Pumpkin Blissful Blooms.


Blissful Blooms Paper Pumpkin


I love the vivid colours of the flowers but mostly I love this sentiment. What a wonderful thing to say on a sympathy card. We want to acknowledge the pain and the loss but also celebrate the good memories and the love that was shared. The sentiment was stamped in Blackberry Bliss. The pink twine and the vellum leaves as well as the beautiful embossed label are all included in the Paper Pumpkin kit.


Altered version of Blissful Blooms Paper Pumpkin


For this card I took one of the cards in the Blissful Blooms Paper Pumpkin kit and I cut it in half. Then I again cut the card front in half and made an old olive and a blackberry bliss mat to make it stand out. I popped this panel up with dimensionals. Once again the label and the vellum leaves are part of the kit.


Rectangle framelits with Blissful Blooms Paper Pumpkin kit


I love the stitched rectangle framelits. I once again cut a card in half and used the card front to make two cards. I did this by using the rectangle stitched framelits. This is the inside of the rectangle piece. I mounted it on a piece of pineapple punch cardstock embossed with the Country Floral embossing folder. This beautiful folder is only available as a free item with a $60 purchase until March 31.


The other stitched rectangle from Blissful Blooms Paper Pumpkin


If you look closely at this card you will see that this is the larger stitched rectangle piece that I cut for the previous card. I layered it on an old olive card and then I used the back of the card that I had cut off to make this focal point. Both the sentiment and the flower stamp are part of the Blissful Blooms stamp set in this Paper Pumpkin. See the vellum leaf and the pretty pink metallic twine? Yup, all from the kit.


The other half of the card front in Blissful Blooms Paper Pumpkin kit


This is the last card for the class and it used the other half of the card front that I had cut in half for the second card I showed you. This part had more pink in it so I layered it with melon mambo and old olive for a brighter look. Just the right card to cheer someone up!


Blissful Blooms Paper Pumpkin stamp set


My Blissful Blooms Paper Pumpkin party will be on Wednesday April 10 at 1pm or 7pm. Class is $20 and you will make five cards. You will also get a door prize ticket and if you bring someone new, you will get an extra door prize ticket. You could win this stamp set or a different Paper Pumpkin kit. If I have extras left over I will offer them as classes by mail. Prepayment is required now for all my classes except Tuesday coffee and a card. E-transfer is preferred to [email protected]


Remember that saleabration ends in just ten days!! Message me if you have any questions. As always I appreciate you so much. Thanks for taking the time to stop by today. If you are interested in subscribing to Paper Pumpkin, here is the link. Click on the images below if you want to purchase a prepaid subscription and please do use the host code as that really helps me to keep class costs down. I will happily send you a card to thank you for taking this extra step. The current host code can be found in the sidebar of each blog post. I hope you have a super day.


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Flowing Fountain

Hello stampers. I love fountains and birds. The two often go hand in hand because birds are attracted to fountains both for drinking and bathing. I love fountains because of the relaxing sound of the splashing water and the artistry of their designs. In public spaces huge fountains are iconic gathering places. This Flowing Fountain stamp set drew me not only because of the lovely artwork but also  because of the beautiful words. It is perfect for sympathy cards and thinking of you cards. You can hone your colouring skills with this set using Blends, watercolour pencils or an aqua painter and ink. These cards are only a beginning of what you can do with this Flowing Fountain stamp set. Let’s take a look:


Flowing Fountain coloured with aqua painter and ink.


I stamped the image in Stayzon ink on shimmery white cardstock knowing that I would be colouring with an aqua painter. If you use Memento with water it will run or bleed. When you colour with Blends, then you need to use Memento ink. The shimmery white piece measures 3 5/8″ by 4 7/8″. With these measurements you can get five pieces out of a regular sheet. That is important because this paper is relatively expensive compared to whisper white cardstock but it is very well suited to watercolouring. The mat is pool party. I coloured with gray granite, pool party and granny apple green. Blueberry bushel, so saffron and calypso coral were used on the birds.


Just the sentiment on this card comes from Flowing Fountain.


I couldn’t resist making another card with Painted Seasons. It is only available until March 31 or while supplies last. The sentiment is from Flowing Fountain however. Don’t you just love the font? I used early espresso and cherry cobbler on very vanilla cardstock. The images were stamped on very vanilla and then run through the Big Shot with the Subtles embossing folder. It is important that you first stamp your images on the smooth very vanilla cardstock and then run it through the embossing folder to get that beautiful texture. Texture is particularly dramatic and important when making a tone on tone card.


Country Floral embossing folder inked up in crumb cake combines with Flowing Fountain sentiment


This card has the sentiment that I really, really loved in Flowing Fountain. I knew right away that I would use it over and over for making Hospice cards. I did a Facebook live video showing how to make this card this afternoon. Here is the link. Please do let me know if these links don’t work! I inked up the Country Floral embossing folder (on the logo side) with crumb cake ink. You just dab the ink pad directly on the folder. Then lay on your 4″ by 5 1/4″ piece of very vanilla cardstock and run it through the BIg Shot. Afterwards the folder rinses off beautifully just with water in the kitchen sink. I coloured the raised flowers with an aqua painter and ink squeezed into the lid of the ink pad or from an acrylic block dabbed directly into the ink pad. I used Petal Pink, So Saffron, Granny Apple Green and Blushing Bride.


Flowing Fountain has beautiful images and equally lovely sentiments in a beautiful font


I hope you were inspired by these cards today.  Remember, the country floral embossing folder and the Painted Seasons stamp set are only available until March 31 or while supplies last as a free item during saleabration. The folder is available free with a $60 purchase and the Painted Seasons bundle (it also comes with adorable paper) is free with a $120 purchase. If you live in Canada, just click on any of the items at the end of my post and you will be taken directly to my online store. If you do not already have a demonstrator, I truly would appreciate your business. Of course, there is always a spot waiting for you on my team as well. The very best deal ever is the starter kit! If you have a wish list that is around $95, then your best bet is to spend $135 on the starter kit. You pay no tax and no shipping AND you get to choose $225 of any products you like. This is only valid until March 31. After that you can only choose $165 in product. This is still a good deal but not as amazing as the one you can get right now! Want to treat yourself? Click here and let the fun begin.


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Brusho Paint Crystals

Hello stampers. Today we are going to do a little exploring of a very fun but easily overlooked product in our Stampin’Up! catalog: Brusho paint crystals. Brusho is the name brand of  these gorgeous intensely coloured paint crystals that are activated with water. It is really quite a fine powder. You poke a hole in the lid with a push pin or thumbtack and then tap the powder out where you want it. You then keep the hole sealed with the push pin or thumbtack when you are not using it. Rather than talk about it, I will show you the cards that I made and then explain what I did on each one.


Brusho paint crystals used in four different ways.


Here is the first card, it was a complete case (copy and share everything) from the catalog. I love the bold colours here. I stamped some images from Beautiful Promenade in versamark on shimmery white cardstock and white embossed with the heat gun. Then I sprinkled on mostly red and gamboge Brusho paint crystals and a little bit of yellow. I then spritzed lightly with water to activate the crystals. You might see a few blue spots, they can appear magically because of some fine powder left on my hands, on the work surface or even in the air!!


Red, yellow and gamboge Brusho paint crystals.


The card base is poppy parade, the edge is from Delicate Lace edgelits and the saying was stamped in Poppy Parade on Powder Pink. It comes from Birthday Cheer in the Occasions catalog on page 17. This card is a bit of an odd shape (I think because I messed up!) It is 1/4 inch shorter than normal- 5 1/4″ by 4 1/4″.


Rainbow effect with Brusho paint crystals


This card uses all the Brusho paint crystals. I cased it from the talented Connie Collins.  I took a piece of shimmery white cardstock that was 4 1/4″ by 5 1/2″ and I misted it with water. I sprinkled on an angle starting at the top in this order: red, gamboge, yellow, moss green and prussian blue. I then gently misted again just to get the colours to run and blend a little bit. I let it dry naturally (if you use a heat gun that tends to mute the colours a bit) I then cut out the butterflies with the dies from the Beauty Abounds bundle on page 13 of the Occasions catalog. The sentiment is from Well Said and it was embossed in white on basic black cardstock. The butterfly was adhered using glue dots only on the bodies of the biggest butterflies to allow for the feeling of movement.


Masking and Beautiful Brusho crystals


This Let it Ride card was cased from the internet. I think the original creator was Lynn Dunn but I was not able to find a corresponding blog post. This card is a work in progress. I made this one with shimmery white cardstock but am going to do it again using watercolour paper. I masked the horse using only a mask made with a sticky note which got rather soggy. The blue bled through on his nose making it look like he is wearing a bridle!! The top of the card around the horse was sprinkled with Prussian Blue brusho crystals and then spritzed with water. I used a aqua painter to spread it around close to the horse. The bottom part was simply coloured with Granny Apple Green blends. The sentiment was embossed in white before I applied the Brusho.


Painters Tape Brusho card


This last card is one of my favourite techniques with Brusho. You put a piece of painters tape across your piece of watercolour paper near the top leaving room for your sentiment. You then drop little dabs of Brusho powder along the bottom of the tape. I alternated between Prussian Blue and Yellow. They mingle nicely to add some green in between. You then hold the card at an angle and spritz down, just a little bit so that you still get colour droplets and not a messy trail running all the way down your card. This piece measures 3 3/4″ by 5″.  The words are from the Well Said bundle. This is a high ticket item on page 27 of the Occasions catalog- $103.50 for the bundle. I highly recommend that you put it in a starter kit. You save the shipping and taxes which for this bundle alone would be $23.69. You would still have $121.50 that you could choose products with and then pay only $135 for all that amazing stuff!!!


I have done several other posts on Brusho. If you type Brusho into the search box at the top right of the page you will see them all. Here is one to make it easy for you.


Saleabration is winding down, so be sure to get what you want on your wish list so that you can get some freebies as well. A LOT of our beautiful products are selling out, so don’t be disappointed and get what you want in the Occasions catalog today. If your wish list is long, I am telling you once again that the starter kit is THE way to go. No need to feel badly if you think you are only going to be a “kitnapper”. Stampin’Up! is willing to take that chance and I just want you to get the most value for your money. Diva Day is this Saturday from 10am till 4pm and you get to spend a day with me being pampered with food, fun stamping and free products in a goodie bag, but only if you have joined my team during saleabration.


I hope you have a super day! Be sure to pop a card in the mail today and make someone happy, or keep one in your purse to give to someone while you are out and about in your community. It’s little things like that that make the world a better place.



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