Christmas Sampler Frenzy

Hello stampers. I just wanted to create a quick blog post before I go and visit my parents. It is such a joy to own your own business so that you can prioritize your family. Now that they are almost 91 and 85 I try to visit at least once a month. This month it will be twice! My Pap is turning 91 on November 19. In the meantime, I had given myself a deadline, to get these two samplers done and posted before I left. I will be able to truly relax with them then. These samplers are the same layout as the one in my earlier post. The first one uses Night in Bethlehem and is a traditionally religious sampler. I love the clean lines. What do you think?

 

Bethlehem Christmas sampler

 

I used a smoky slate base of 8″ square and basic grey squares 2 1/4″ square with white squares that are 2″ square. The focal point is basic black 4 3/4″ square with a white piece 4 1/2″ square. The framelits are cut out of basic black and copper foil. The star is crushed curry. The next sampler is made using Hearts Come Home and is more traditional in colour and theme with Santa Claus and a Christmas village look.

 

Hearts come home sampler in real red, garden green and night of navy with a touch of silver glimmer paper.

 

For this sampler I used garden green, real red, night of navy and a touch of silver glimmer paper. The dimensions and layout are the same as the other samplers. You can get a class to go kit for $25 in Canada, just message me if you want one and we will figure out the details. The reason I am starting to offer these classes to go is that I am transitioning my business and my life! Bittersweet for sure.

 

 

Please just pray for me that I will find a new home that has one room that is big enough to hold my beautiful stamp room table. Sending big hugs your way, and now I am off to visit my loved ones.

Christmas Sampler Framed Art

Hello stampers! Framed art samplers are like scrapbooking for the wall. It’s like card making taken to a different level. I love creating seasonal samplers that can be interchanged in the same frame. Let’s be real. If we kept making beautiful samplers and adding them to the walls we would soon run out of wall space and our homes would look like a scrapbooking store! This year I wanted to make a sampler using the beautiful Year of Cheer suite, but I also wanted to combine it with the stunning Santa’s Sleigh framelits. This is what I came up with.

 

Santa's Sleigh and Season of Cheer make for great art and great gift giving.

 

As you can see this would also make a great gift for someone on your list. It really doesn’t take much time to make because the smaller squares are so simple; the patterned paper is so beautiful it stands up all by itself! The mats for the small squares are made of champagne foil paper and they are 2 1/4 inches square. The inside squares are 2″ square pieces of Year of Cheer specialty paper. One of the squares is made of copper foil paper embossed with the Softly Falling embossing folder. Here is a close-up:

 

Gold glimmer paper and dazzling diamonds glitter paper make for beautiful trees.

To coordinate with the Year of Cheer paper, which is very rich and metallic, I used gold glimmer paper, dazzling diamonds glimmer paper and copper foil paper for the trees and for the deer and sleigh. I added early espresso behind the deer and one of the trees to add both depth and contrast. I also thought that the little red bow on the gold embossed wreath added just the right pop of colour. All these dies come from the Santa’s Sleigh set. I found that laying the foil sheets upside down helped for cutting them out so they would delaminate. It also made the sleigh and deer face in the right direction for what I needed. That is what is so nice about using either foil sheets or glimmer paper. If you turn them around you can have your image facing in two different directions.

 

The sampler fits into a 12x12 frame with an 8x8" matted opening.

 

This frame is 12×12″ with a matted 8×8″ opening. I found them last year at Wal-Mart and I am guessing that at this time of year they will once again have a great selection of frames. The whole thing is “built” on an 8″ square of early espresso cardstock. The biggest square is 4 3/4″ square of whisper white and 4 1/2″ square of champagne foil paper. The foil paper was first embossed with the Winter Wonder embossing folder. If you were planning on giving this away as a gift you could pair it with this beautiful card:

 

Washi tape combined with Swirly Snowflakes thinlet dies makes for a stunning card.

 

I used champagne foil paper with the Swirly Snowflake thinlets dies together with the Year of Cheer washi tape to make a stunning Christmas card. The sentiment is embossed with copper and I used the ever popular and useful Stitched Framelits to cut it out. The last thing I want to share is a cute little idea for using your left over Year of Cheer specialty paper. This paper is so beautiful that it makes any small gift extra special. I used it to wrap these Ferrero Rocher chocolates. I found a case of these at Costco with a dozen packages of three in a box.

 

 

I simply wrapped a 3″ by 5″ piece of paper around the chocolates and then tied a piece of metallic edge ribbon around it.

 

Class to Go Offer

 

As you might know, my house is up for sale and when Rachel is done school in June I will most likely be moving away from Chatham. I hope to continue teaching classes in person but I also realize that more of my income will depend on online sales. With that in mind I am starting to offer “classes to go”. The Christmas art sampler will be $25 including shipping to anywhere in Canada. Frame not included. Payment can be made through PayPal or etransfer. I haven’t added an online shopping feature for this yet, but if you comment below or message me we will get the job done!

It’s All About the Treats: treat tubes to the rescue!

Hello stampers. That is a hashtag I use often: #itsallaboutthetreats. It sometimes really is all about the treats. If you have read my “About Me” section, then you know that I am called The Pampered Stamper because I like pampering my people with good food while they stamp, or more accurately, before or after they stamp. Stamping is always great fun, but gathering together in fellowship over good food, that is priceless. Stamping without treats just seems empty to me. Soulless. In this post you will see how we can combine treats right into the card. How much fun is that? Stampin’Up! has made it possible with their treat tubes. They were first featured in a Paper Pumpkin last year and were such a hit that they made into our catalog. I got the idea for these fabulous cards from my dear friend BJ Peters.

 

September Paper Pumpkin and treat tubes combine for this great card.

 

I used the September Paper Pumpkin stamps to make this paper myself. I just stamped in versamark and white embossed the leaves and then sponged with real red, pumpkin pie, crushed curry and old olive to make a beautiful background paper. The stamps are from Spooky Cat. This card fits into a regular envelope but it probably costs a little extra to mail because of the bulk.

 

Spooky cat, treat tubes and washi tape make for a quick and easy card.

 

I couldn’t resist using the retired washi tape from last year’s holiday catalog. Anything with words on it and you have me hooked! But check out the cat? How awesome is our cat punch? Buy it in a bundle with the Spooky Cat stamp set and you will save 10%. Did you know that if you place an online order with me this month you will get entered into a draw to win any bundle of your choice? I am doing this to help celebrate my 12th anniversary with Stampin’Up!

 

Tags and Trimmings combine with treat tubes for a super card

 

This last card is a total case from BJ Peters. I didn’t have any Christmas M&Ms so I used crushed candy canes instead that you could use as a sweet topper on your whipping cream for that fancy coffee or hot chocolate.  Now I’m guessing you would like to have the measurements on how to make this adorable treat holder yourself. No problem, I totally understand, so I have a little diagram for you. I will also share a video so you can see how it is done.

 

 

I am not sure, but I think that the inspiration for these treat cards may have come from the post-it note holders that have been popular for a long time. Sometimes we forget the “oldies but goodies” so I will share a picture of one of these as well as the measurements for a standard square post-it note pad. First of all, here is the old one that I have held on to for many years because I thought it was so cute. Originally I made it for a teacher’s gift class.

 

 

I used this old one to get the measurements for the new one. Real red cardstock is 3 1/4″ by 7 3/8″ scored at 3 1/8″, 3 1/2″ and 3 7/8″. Cut between the score lines at 1″ and 2 1/4″, this will make the pen holder part. Here is the new one that I made using the Hang Your Stocking stamp set.

 

This post it note holder makes a great stocking stuffer or impromptu little gift.

 

Before I share my video, don’t forget about the contest I am offering this month as a celebration of my 12th anniversary with Stampin’Up! If you order online during October you will be entered into a draw for any bundle of your choice but you must use the current host code when you place your order. Good luck!!

 

Christmas Sparkle with Year of Cheer Suite

Put a little sparkle in your life…simply!

A lot of card makers are like crows, they like things that sparkle! The Year of Cheer suite definitely has sparkle with all the metallic papers, the pretty embellishments and the amazing washi tape that all go with this suite. You can even go over the top and mix it with our glimmer paper. I am so thankful to Barb Stewart for designing these beautiful cards. As soon as I saw them I knew I would offer a class with them and everyone was in love. The best part is that you get a beautiful card with very little effort and that is what many of us long for. Simplicity. Beauty. A little extra time to just relax. These cards do all of that!

 

Year of Cheer suite and Add a Little Glitz

 

I did add one extra card to the class out of sheer necessity. You see when I decided to offer this as a class I was totally out of the foil snowflakes, so I wanted to offer an alternative. I ended up using the stars from the Starlight Thinlets and it turned out beautifully. The stars are so very lovely, but the foil snowflakes are immediate gratification. I will share a video at the end of this post to show you how to make the stars in the most easy and efficient way.

 

Starlight Thinlets Alternative

 

The starlight thinlets coordinate with the Star of Light stamp set. I love this 21 piece stamp set because not only does it have beautiful star images including star dust that can be used on Disney cards as fairy dust, it also has lots of beautiful sayings.

 

Use starlight thinlets as the focal point of this card.

 

When my customers saw this card they thought I had embossed the star. Really it is just two star framelits layered on top of each other. I have some pictures here, but please note that in the second picture the stars are just laying on top of each other, I haven’t adhered them yet because I want to do that in my video and I don’t want to have to make more stars!!

 

Layered stars in different foil and glimmer papers are just stunning.

 

Measurements

Now for the important information. Measurements do make everything easier right? No need for guesswork. Here you go. All the cards are the same which is just wonderful.

heavy white cardstock: 4 1/4″ by 11″ scored at 5 1/2″

foil paper (I used champagne, silver and gold but copper also works) 3 3/4″ by 4 3/4″

patterned paper from Year of Cheer- 3 1/2″ by 4 1/2″

for the sentiment- whisper white cardstock 1 1/4″ by 3 3/4′ metallic 1 1/2″ by 4″

One of the cards uses soft suede for the matting and this also looks quite wonderful, so if you need to save some money you could use this instead of the foil paper. To make your foil paper last longer be sure to cut out stars from your big mat before you put the patterned paper over top, just be sure to leave a 1/4 inch margin all around!

 

Foil snowflakes are the perfect easy accent for this card.

 

Did you know that you get 12 gold and 12 silver foil snowflakes in each package and that they are cream coloured on the back? So you can use them as a neutral accent or you can sponge them with any colour you like, or you can stamp the whole snowflake with versamark and emboss in gold, silver or copper for a thicker, more luxurious finish.

 

Here is another inspiration for the Add a Little Glitz stamp set that the saying “May your season sparkle”.

 

Finally here is the video on how to use your star framelits with the least amount of frustration.

 

I hope you have a great weekend! Remember if you live in Canada and don’t already have a demonstrator I would love to have you order from me or even better, join my team and get your own discount.

 

Christmas Stamp-a-Stack

Stacks of Cards

One of the most popular classes of the year is the Christmas stamp-a-stack. Everyone loves giving and receiving Christmas cards and it is really gratifying to make a stack of them all at once to get a jump-start on the season. I love having a big stack of cards all ready to be mailed out on December 1. It is really nice to make some over-the-top special cards too, but quick and easy stamp-a-stack cards are always fun to do.

 

Inspiration

I was inspired by two things when I was creating these cards. The first inspiration was our October paper sale which goes to the end of October. If you buy three packs of featured paper you get one pack FREE! So I bought some paper for myself of course including the Be Merry paper. The second inspiration was my swap card from Selina Merali. I love the layout of this card and the nice big sentiment and I thought it would work really well with the Be Merry paper.

 

Two versions of the same card using the Be Merry dsp.

 

The designer series paper is layered on a garden green mat measuring 4″ x 5 1/4″. The bottom strip of patterned paper is 2″ x 3 7/8″. The top part is whisper white 3 1/8″ x 3 7/8″ and it was stamped with real red using the snowflakes from Night in Bethlehem. The words are from Carols of Christmas. I used shimmer black ribbon and red satin ribbon to finish it off. The snowflake on the left is from Colorful Season and the star is from Night in Bethlehem.

Here are some more versions of this same card:

 

Mix and match paper and stamps for a simple Christmas card.

 

Here is the original card from Selina. She used Merry Little Christmas designer series paper from the holiday catalog. Isn’t it just amazing how the little details can make all the difference? I love how the linen thread and the rhinestone add just the right touch to the little tree accent. The stitched thinlets are also fabulous for accenting the sentiment.

 

Selina Merali's card using Merry LIttle Christmas suite.

 

Sometimes Simple is Best

 

The next card I made expressly with simplicity in mind. I love this snowflake border thinlet and I really wanted it to shine without any distractions. So I combined it with a bold sentiment and a few rhinestones.  Which colour combination do you like best?

 

Snowflake Sentiments and That's the Tag combine for a clean and simple card.

 

Although I love both colour combinations, the card on the left is quicker to make as there is no embossing. If you really think about it, this card doesn’t even have to be a Christmas card, it could just be a cheerful winter card or even a birthday card. I used pool party on the first card and heavy white cardstock and night of navy on the second card with the sentiment embossed in white as well.

 

The last set of cards were cased from another swap card, this one I received from Genevieve Ko. The cards are the same, I just used a different sentiment on each one. They use the Night in Bethlehem suite.

 

Night in Bethlehem combines with Star of Light for a simple but stunning card.

 

This card is a little more intricate for a stamp-a-stack card but it is not too difficult to prevent you from making a bunch of them in good time. The hardest part will be deciding who to give them to!

 

Class Date and Details

 

The date for this Christmas stamp-a-stack is Wednesday October 25 at 9:30am and 7pm. If the response is overwhelming I will also open up a spot at 1pm. The cost is $35 for 12 cards and envelopes.  You will get four cards of each design. There will be variations of each card that you can choose from. I will set up three stations so that you can make your cards at your own pace. Please bring your own adhesive which includes a tape runner of your choice, glue dots, dimensionals and fine-tip glue if you need it. A pair of sharp ribbon scissors can also be good to have on hand. There will also be a door prize at this event, it will be the Merry Patterns stamp set that is a host exclusive.

 

Contest Winner

 

I almost forgot to tell you about the winner of my Spooky Cat contest. Thanks to everyone who commented on my posts, I really appreciate it. The winner was Juleen Henderson. Comments are always appreciated, it helps to alleviate the feeling that your blog posts are just disappearing into cyberspace. Have a super day and keep on stamping!

Retiform Technique

Hello stampers. When is the last time you really played with your stamps? This retiform technique is a great one for encouraging just that. Retiform means “netlike”. The Webster dictionary says:

Definition of retiform. : composed of crossing lines and interstices : reticular netlike; specifically : being the connective tissue cells of the framework of the lymphatic glands.

Well, we are not interested in the lymphatic glands, but the crossing lines and all the other fun stuff involved with this technique is truly addictive. Here is what you need to have on hand to do this technique. Two coordinating colours of ink, a lighter shade and a darker one. A sponge. Sticky notes of varying sizes. The five inch by three inch is ideal and then the smaller square ones are great too. Rather than describing the technique in writing, it is much easier to simply watch the video, so I will post that at the end. In the meantime, check out the various cards that I have made. I was originally inspired by a video I saw on Pinterest by Randi Collins. Here is the link to her video.

 

 

I used three different Christmas sets to make this card: Night in Bethlehem,Hearts come Home and Musical Season.

 

 

For this card I used early espresso for the stamping and soft suede for the sponging. I used the stamp sets Night in Bethlehem, Hearts Come Home and Musical Season. I accidentally stamped the one drummer boy in soft suede, but it still looks good I think. For the next card I used the exact same stamp sets but switched it up a bit. No two cards are alike, and that is the fun part.

 

 

Early espresso and soft suede combine for a monochromatic Christmas card.

 

This one is different mainly because of the straight segment at the top of the card. Do you think this adds to the card or takes away from it? The next two cards use the stamp sets So Many Shells and High Tide and the colours marina mist for sponging and dapper denim for stamping.

 

This great retiform technique card uses High Tide and So Many Shells from Stampin'Up.

 

The next card is done by my customer and friend Heather Adams. She left a bigger white line between segments and I really like that look as well.

 

Bolder segments with a bigger white space between them make this retiform technique card really pop.

 

The last card has a bit of a twist in that it uses a pop of colour. I used the stamp sets Painted Harvest and Vintage Leaves. Colours are soft suede, early espresso, crushed curry and cajun craze.

 

Vintage Leaves and Painted Harvest are used to make this retiform card with a pop of colour.

 

This last card was made by my team member Aileen Boersma. She made it for her grandson using No Bones About It.

 

Great retiform card for a kid's birthday

 

So there you have it! A great new technique called “retiform” which sounds more complicated than it really is. Just mask off sections with sticky notes, sponge and stamp till you fill up your card front. Watch the video for full details and then get down and dirty and make some of your own. I would love to hear how you make out with it. If you need any supplies and you live in Canada, please use the host code on the side bar when you place your order and I will pop a card in the mail to you as a thank you. Are you a true addict? Then save yourself a bunch of money and join my team by getting the starter kit, it really is the best deal in the entire catalog. Click here to do that, or message me if you have any questions.