By the Dock

Hello stampers and happy Friday to you. Today I am continuing to share masculine cards from the Happy Mail for Gerard Contest. Both cards today use the fantastic set By The Dock. Can you believe that I haven’t used this set yet? Before we get started on this post, I want to address a possible concern and get your feedback.


Yes or No?


When I share happy mail contest cards that I receive I often share the envelope as well because many of you add special touches or the stamp is eyecatching. It has been brought to my attention that I should be blocking out the addresses because of privacy issues. How do you feel about that?

Here is what was going on in my mind when posting these pictures. Given my blog audience I didn’t think it was an issue to show these addresses. In fact, I thought that these people might even get surprise happy mail from some of you just for fun. So I am asking you, should I block them out or not? If it was your card, would you want your address kept private? From now on, mention it to me in your card if you want me to not show the envelope and I will happily honour your wishes.


By The Dock Cards:  Ann-Marie Paré


By The Dock


This card is from Ann-Marie Paré, a darling woman who comes from Lachine, Quebec, just outside of Montreal. I love Ann-Marie’s delicate sponging of her sky and water. She captured the light perfectly! My second favourite thing is how she coloured her dock, it looks so weathered and worn. I can just picture looking at this dock on a foggy morning from a cozy cabin with the man that I love. Thank you so much for your fantastic card! The saying comes from a saleabration stamp set whose name is slipping my mind right now.


Lachine, Quebec


Of course I had to look up Lachine, Quebec, which is Ann-Marie’s hometown. Wow! Looks like the cradle of some amazing history. This is what I read:  Lachine, apparently from the French term la Chine , is often said to have been named in 1667, in mockery of its then owner René-Robert Cavelier de La Salle, who explored the interior of North America trying to find a passage to China. When he returned without success, he and his men were derisively named les Chinois (the Chinese). The name was adopted when the parish of Saints-Anges-de-la-Chine was created in 1676, with the form Lachine appearing with the opening of a post office in 1829.


Lachine Quebec


The picture above is from the Fur Trade National Historic site. If you want to read more about it or see some more great pictures, click here.


Terry Hamilton’s Card


I really love how two people can use the same stamp set and get a completely different look. Terry used shimmery white cardstock, she also sponged her background and masked a sun (or a moon). The dock and the boat were stamped on crumb cake with soft suede ink and cut out with the coordinating Dockside Dies. Simple bus striking. Terry used the stitched nested dies for the sentiment which was stamped in early espresso.


By the Dock


If you want to see a great technique for flawless sponging, check out this blog post from last year.


Kelowna, British Columbia


Terry comes from Kelowna, British Columbia. I just looked it up and I want to jump in my car and start driving. Kelowna is a small city in the Okanagan valley which is renowned for its orchards and vineyards. The wines that I have had from the Okanagan valley have been phenomenal!


Kelowna BC


If you want to read more about it, just click here. A visit to Terry is starting to sound like a great idea! You are so lucky to live in such a beautiful place.


Thank You


Thanks so much for joining me today, I hope you are keeping well with the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. I am thankful that my business keeps me busy and engaged. The only big difference in my day to day life is that in person classes have stopped and I cannot see my loved ones. That is pretty huge, but I have been super busy, so that helps a lot. Like many of you, I have gone through a lot of flour and yeast baking delicious things and trying new recipes. There is a lot of good to be found in this trying time. Please take the time to comment, it is always so nice to read your thoughts.


Fancy Folds Contest


If you love to make fancy fold cards, please consider sending one to me and you might win the Little Ladybug stamp set. Contest ends May 31. You can send your cards to Jackie Bultje, 81 Delaware Ave, Chatham, Ontario N7L 2W3. Thanks and have a super day.


I forgot to say that if you live in Canada, you can shop with me simply by clicking on the images below in the product list. Now is the perfect time to start a new hobby! Message me if you have any questions. Please.

Product List


All Stacked Up

Hello stampers. It’s a beautiful snowy Tuesday afternoon and this oma’s house is quiet for the first time since Friday! No patter of little feet, no tumbling of towers, no squeals of delight. I’m not going to lie. While I will miss my adorable little man, the quiet is rather sublime!!

Today I am going to do a blog post with Cup of Christmas all stacked up. A big thank you to Annette Koolmees for the inspiration. I shared her card in a previous post which you can see here. Cup of Christmas is also my stamp of the month for December.


My Card



I really like taking a picture with the ink pads so you can see at a glance which colours to use. Here you can see the Cup of Christmas all stacked up. Did you know that this stamp set uses brand new technology that allows you to do reverse stamping with the same stamp? Yes, the cup stamps are totally reversible!!



I took a picture with the Nine Lives stamp set in the background as well so I would remember that the heart stamp came from this set. The aqua painter is in there because I saturated it with old olive ink and then tapped it aggressively to make the background splatter effect.



I used the very same layout as Annette but I wanted to make my card easier so I masked the middle mug and just stamped the other two. None of these mugs have been die cut. The Sweet Christmas Wishes is embossed on vellum and overlaid on the middle mug for added interest. You could stamp it right on the mug if you wanted to, just make sure to emboss so that you don’t see through the sentiment.


Stamp of the Month


Cup of Christmas is the stamp of the month for December. If you purchase the stamp set then you will get the class for free. This will be our second card for that class. Stay tuned for card number three! Class will be on Tuesday December 2. I will do a Facebook live on the cards Tuesday night at 7pm and you can also purchase all three finished cards for $15 plus shipping. I will have today’s cards on my blog post tomorrow with a buy it now button. How awesome is that? Instant gratification.


A personal note


This afternoon I will be putting the finishing touches on my presentation for OnStage this weekend in Toronto. I have big plans!! The cards and projects that I am sharing are so lovely that I am going to be making my first ever pdf so you can recreate all of them yourself at home. This will be a huge task. I will be photographing them all today. That will be the start of it. I am really hoping that I will have the pdf finished before I leave for Toronto, that way everyone can purchase it and be ready to create with all this lovely new product. My first blog post on this will be on Monday, so stay tuned!!


Thanks for joining me today and have a super day.


Product List

Sponging and Masking with Looking Up

Hello stampers! I did some sponging and masking with Looking Up, a fabulous new card kit in our annual catalog. While the kit makes 15 cards you can make nine more gorgeous cards using the additional die cuts provided in the kit. All you need to do is make a simple background that is reminiscent of a sky. There are two ways to do this. One way is with a watercolour wash on shimmery white cardstock. The other way is a sponged background using a cloud formation mask. Sound difficult? Not if you hurry and get the rainbow builder dies that are on the clearance rack. There are two gems in that set: long thinlets in two different cloud formations as well as two other clouds and of course all the pieces to make a colourful rainbow.


Homemade cloud masks using window sheets and rainbow builder dies- the cloud ones.


Here you can see the two long thinlets and the acetate or window sheet masks I made with them. It is a good idea to write on them, not for you to remember what they are, but so that you can find them when they are laying on your table!! I absolutely love the background you can make so easily with them. Cheap, quick and artistic! It really is amazing what you can do with sponging and masking using just ink and paper. I kept it simple using only one colour of ink, but you could definitely take it up a notch and use more shades of blue and grey.


Alternate card made using the extra die cuts from Looking Up card kit.


It is difficult covering up some of that beautiful sky with the die cuts, but doesn’t it look great? The white is 3 3/4″ by 5″ with a bermuda bay mat of 4″ by 5 1/4″. Only the raspberry balloon is popped up with dimensionals. Did I tell you that you get a lot of those included in the kit?


Another bonus card using the extra die cuts in the Looking Up card kit.


For this card I did a watercolour wash on shimmery white cardstock which measures 3 5/8″ by 4 7/8″. This precise measurement allows you to get five pieces from one 8 1/2 by 11 sheet of cardstock. Crucial information when it is more than $1 a sheet.


Shimmery white cardstock, aqua painter and bermuda bay ink for a lovely watercolour wash background.


This card was supposed to be for the airplane die cut but I didn’t want to cover up the pretty wash. I will show you how to get this effect in a short video. It was easy to just add a swoosh of crumb cake ink to the bottom of the card to ground it! How do you like the crushed curry mat? I thought it gave it a nice cheerful look. Truthfully it was supposed to coordinate with the airplane but it works well with the trees too.


Here is the video showing how to make the beautiful backgrounds. If you click follow on the YouTube channel then you won’t miss out on any of my videos!



Everyone at class loved these alternative cards and they also enjoyed learning the new background techniques. It’s so much fun to see what you can do with just ink and paper. In my video I also show you how to cut your shimmery white cardstock most efficiently. Thanks so much for joining me, be sure to keep an eye on the clearance rack, I have heard that they will be adding a lot of new stuff very soon! If you choose to order online, I would love it if you also used the host code, that way free host credits do not go to waste. If you place your very own order of $200 you will qualify for your own host rewards. the current host code is YDZAPF6Y.

Product List

Masking With Window Sheets

Hello stampers! Don’t you just love it when you can use one product in several different ways? I love using the celebrate you thinlet dies from the saleabration offerings as a mask. I cut it out multiple times with window sheets (also known as acetate) I then sponged the back of them with tombow using our silicone mat and then let them dry for a few hours. They are now nice and tacky and can be used many times as a mask. Take a look at what I did:


window sheets used to cut out "celebrate"


I hadn’t used the new glossy white cardstock yet so I wanted to see how it would work. My original idea was to use Brusho, so I sprinkled on different Brusho colours and then spritzed with water. Well. It didn’t turn out as expected. The water ran under the masks, but I kept it and it grew on me. It is a great artsy look, not crisp and clear but very fun.


Glossy cardstock and window sheet acetate.



Here is a closeup and then you can see the little bling that I used that look like water droplets. They are called Glitter & Clear Epoxy Shapes and are found on page 33 of the Occasions catalog.

I still wanted to try Brusho with this mask but in a more controlled way, so I used a colour wash instead with my aquapainter. This worked quite well, but believe it or not I like the messy looking one better!!


shimmer white cardstock with Brusho aquapainter wash and Five for All


The next few cards are the more traditional ones using a brayer and ink. I randomly placed my window sheet cutouts and then brayered over them using only one colour, starting off the cardstock and then working my way up, but starting at the bottom each time so that I would get an ombre effect. See the video at the end of my post to get a clearer picture (pardon the pun!)


I used the Celebrate thinlets and the Amazing You stamp set with berry burst metallic edge ribbon


Don’t you just love how the Amazing You coordinates with the Celebrate You thinlit dies? It’s like a mirror image with different proportions. This one was done with Berry Burst cardstock, ink and ribbon. So pretty don’t you think? Simple but effective.


This card adds a third free saleabration item: ribbon


This card has a nice spring feel to it with the calypso coral. Did you notice the third free item on this card? It’s the shimmer ribbon pack! It comes in three colours and different widths, but five yards of each basic gray, bermuda bay and calypso coral. I love this ribbon, it is really beautiful. My last card is made using bermuda bay and the other two colours of ribbon from this pack. I thought you might want to see it all in action!


Bermuda bay card using glossy white cardstock, window sheet celebrate masks and free shimmer ribbon pack.


Sale-a-bration is such a great time of year in the stamping world. It is wonderful to be able to choose free product with every $60 you spend and this year they have upped the ante! There are two choices that you can have if you spend $120. One of those choices is the Celebrate framelits and the other one is the Happy Wishes stamp set. It is also an amazing time of year to become a demonstrator OR simple get the great deal on the starter kit for your own benefit. If you would like more information on that, comment below. I don’t want to sound like a broken record but I am very enthusiastic about sharing it since it is almost too good to be true. I would LOVE to have you on my team.


In the meantime, here is the video I promised you showing you the masking technique used on these cards. Enjoy.






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.



Embossing Paste and Pattern Party Stencils

What lives in the heart

I grew up on a farm and whenever I am driving through the countryside I always look with longing at the red brick farmhouses. They evoke such happy memories for me. Baking bread with my mom at the kitchen table, eating breakfast at 5:30am with my dad and brothers before going to milk the cows and bundling up in front of the woodstove to go outside and play in the snow. So when I saw the brick wall stencil and the embossing paste in the new catalog, I knew what I wanted  to do. I wanted to recreate those beautiful red brick walls and make some cards that bring back those same nostalgic feelings.

To get the perfect look for the bricks I added some cajun craze reinker to a small amount of embossing paste. I smeared some of it over the stencil onto whisper white cardstock. Then I added a drop of early espresso reinker to another small amount of paste  and smeared it over and around the cajun craze tinted paste. Perfection! Just the right hue for what I was looking for. Be sure to clean your stencil and your palette knives as soon as you are done so they don’t dry out and harden.


Add some drops of reinker to get just the right colour "bricks".


Brick decorative mask and embossing paste combine beautifully with Half Full for a vintage card.


On this card I sponged soft suede in between the bricks to give it less of a stark look. I love the look of an “exposed brick wall” with this Half Full stamp set, just what a wall in a nice wine bar or cafe would look like! The bricks also look better when they are left a little rugged with unfinished edges and also not covering the whole card front. Leaving the top corner unfinished is perfect for placing your sentiment. Remember to let your embossing paste harden before sponging around it or on it. If you have smeared the paste so that it is even with the decorative mask (in other words, thinly) then it takes about an hour to dry. When I made these cards I did all the background first. Then I stamped my images that I needed to fussy cut. Of course there were lots of other “mom” things happening in between too.


"Big Questions" comes from the great stamp set "Five for All".


I made this masculine card because my Pap had a truck just like this one before I was born! Add that to the fact that the colour of these bricks is exactly the same as the farm house that I grew up in and you have a winner for a card. Did you notice that the windows are black? The reason is that I am covering up a mistake! When I was watercolouring the truck I couldn’t manage to stay within the lines for the windows and it didn’t look nice at all, so I used a black marker to colour the windows in. I think it is rather effective!


When watercolouring goes a little wrong...try this marker trick.


The sentiment is from the stamp set Five for All. The truck is from the set Country Livin’. 


Using the Decorative Masks with Sponging

While my first instinct was to use these decorative masks with our new embossing paste, they also work great with simple sponging. You can use three tools to accomplish this: stamping sponges, sponge daubers or our sponge brayers. For the next card I used stamping sponges with early espresso ink on cajun craze card stock. The images were stamped in archival black, coloured and then stamped direct to paper with versamark and clear embossed. The images are from Country Livin’.


Country Livin' and a brick wall.


You wouldn’t know it, but there are three other masks in this set. The brick wall is definitely my favourite, but I also played with the cloud one. The other two are going to have to wait. What a great value they are. Four masks for $8 Canadian. Check out the Pattern Party Decorative Masks on page 201 of the catalogue.


Fluffy White Clouds with embossing paste


I used the smallest palette knife to make these clouds and give them texture the same way you would with icing on a cake. The sentiment is from a brand new set coming in the Holiday Catalog called Painted Harvest. I used the sponge brayer to make the background. The sand is done with soft suede and the sky is marina mist and island indigo. Card base is island indigo. The lady from Beautiful You is paper piece with real red and crushed curry.


White craft ink clouds with decorative masks.


The “cloud nine” card is definitely very textured. In Dutch you would call this a “misbaksel”. In other words, a few things went wrong with this one but I still wanted to show it. I started with a watercolour background which really is quite stunning. Then I decided to sponge the clouds with white craft ink. This was a bit of a mistake. The white just didn’t pop enough. So I decided to add white embossing powder, but some of the powder stuck to my watercoloured background making for a bit of a messy look. No worries, clouds sometimes look like that don’t they? I still think it is a bright and cheerful card and I would be most happy to get one in the mail.


Collage stamping with Post Script and Wherever You Go.


I do love the collage stamping on this masculine card. I used the stamp set Wherever You Go as well as the new background stamp called Post Script. I used embossing paste for the clouds but they kind of disappeared into the busy background. Sponging them with white craft ink after they dried really made them pop. I used sponge daubers to do this without getting white craft ink on the background. You can see that the bottom cloud is a little bit blue. I first sponged over it in blue and didn’t like the look. The craft white couldn’t quite cover that up!


Coffee Cafe and brick wall


This last card really has a rustic feel to it. Maybe it is because I actually painted with coffee on it! Yes, the brick wall on white was just too stark and I had some cold brew coffee in the fridge to make iced coffees so I thought, why not? I stamped the words repeatedly on the top right corner to give a chalkboard feel. You’ll notice a tinge of bluish green on some of the words, that is because I had done a watercolour background on a previous card and my grid paper was a little messy so some of the ink transferred to this card. I like it, but it would be hard to copy this look again. I have made a video to show how I did some of these cards but for some reason it has failed to upload to Youtube, so you can see it on my Pampered Stamper Facebook page.


Have you had a chance to try out the new embossing paste yet? I am looking forward to using this in my technique club. All clubs start in September and I still have room in technique club, upon request club (at this one the host gets to choose what we do) as well as the man,oh man club where we make exclusively masculine cards. Have a super day!


ps. the video has now uploaded to YouTube, so here you go!



Subscribe Here!

* indicates required

I want to receive your: