Sunday, December 30, 2012

Winter Days

What a beautiful snowy weekend.  Max couldn't wait to get outside to go sledding.  His friend came over and they played for quite some time!  I didn't make it outside to take any pictures, but I was inspired for my scrapbook page.  The kids have a few more days off school, so I'm sure I'll have plenty of time to get some pictures of the kids having fun in the snow.  

Supplies Needed:
Avonlea My Reflections paper packet
Exclusive Inks:  Slate and White Daisy
Juniper Exclusive Ink - Discontinued
Art Philosophy Cricut Cartridge
Opposites Attract Cricut Cartridge
Card Stock: WhisperSlateSmokey Plum, and White Daisy
Embellishments:  Filigree Charms and "swirly pewter brad"
Glitz Glitter Gel

I also used my new Fiskar Interchangable Punch System for the "snowflake ribbon" that goes thru the middle of the page.  I chose random snow flakes to cover with White Daisy ink to bring focus to the snow flakes.

I chose one of the beautiful papers from the Avonlea paper packet to cut out the letters for my title and edged them with Slate ink.

When making my own background and Texture (B & T) paper on the bottom half of the layout, I used snowflakes.  Follow the rule of 3 when doing your random stamping.  I also chose to use Juniper ink on a few of the snowflakes to make them stand out.  

I also edged my paper in random spots and the corners with Slate ink.  

For my embellishments, I chose Filigree Charms and a "swirly pewter brad". 


I finished the layout off with 3 snowflakes from our Art Philosphy Cricut Collection. I added some Glitz Glitter Gel to make it BLING:)

I can't wait to get some fun pictures on this layout.  I've made 7 kits for our January club.  I hope they enjoy making it as much as I did!

Stay safe and warm in the cold weather.  I told my husband today..."Only 4 more months and we'll be mowing the lawn".  Yes, he looked at me like I was crazy, but hey, I have to have something to look forward to.  Think Spring!!!

Speaking of Spring....our new Spring Catalog will be coming soon.  The catalog will be available starting February 1st.  If there's anything left on your wishlist from our Fall 2012 catalog, get it now...only 32 days left to purchase.

Thanks for stopping by...happy scrapping!

Friday, November 2, 2012

Welcome to our November Hop!  If you arrived from Deb K.'s Blog you are in the right place!  Please continue to follow our blog hop and enjoy all the beautiful artwork and creativity.  If you've started here, continue "hopping" to Nicole's Blog.  You will know you have reached the end when you end up right back here.  

This month we've chosen layout #2 (pg 8-9) and a card pattern #20 (pg 42-43) from our "Make It From The Heart" pattern book.  

Fall is such a beautiful season.  I had great intentions of getting some pictures of our family playing in the leaves this year.  However, my father became very ill and time got away.  I guess I have my layout for next fall already done:)

I used our Color-Ready Accents-Arbor Wooden Shapes to add dimension to my page.  This is the first I've used our wooden shapes and I L.O.V.E. them.  I will definitely be getting more of them! 

The card pattern we chose is a very simple and easy pattern.  This card pattern is perfect for Christmas cards because it is quick and simple assembly.     

I chose our Pear & Partridge paper.  The sample layout used ribbon, but I chose to make the "ribbon" out of paper by folding like an accordion and adhering to the card.  I also used our Irresistibles Persnickety Journaling Spots.

Thank you for visiting my blog.  Please hop on over to Nicole's Blog.

Make sure you join us next month...we'll be showcasing layout #3 and the card will be pattern #21.

Saturday, September 1, 2012

September Blog Hop!

Welcome to our September Blog Hop!  If you've arrived from Deb K.'s blog, you're in the right spot:)  If you're just starting here, simply follow the trail until you have visited all the blogs in the hop.  You will know you reached the end when you wind up back here.  This month we have decided to go with "Consultants Choice".  When you are done viewing my project, I encourage you to hop over to Nicole's blog and check out what she has created this month.    

My family and I just took a week off to spend together before our kids head back to school...we had a "staycation".  We chose to do day trips and/or activities to just spend time together.  One of our fun days included hiking to Old Man's Cave in Logan, Ohio.  What a beautiful day we had for hiking.  The views were absolutely amazing.  Our kids had never been hiking, so they were in total awe of everything they saw.  I love it when our family makes memories that we will never forget.  I'm sharing a layout from our day of hiking.  

I hope you enjoy our blog hop and get inspiration for your projects.  I used some techniques from my "Technique Boutique" lessons.  Feel free to check those out and be on the lookout for more!

Thanks so much for looking and I hope to see you again as a follower.  Have a safe holiday weekend!

Supplies used:
My Reflections Avonlea paper
Make It From The Heart Volume 1: pattern 9
Campin' Fever stamp set
Chipboard letters
Cricut Art Philosophy Collection

Click HERE to move on to Nicole's blog.

Monday, August 13, 2012


Today I'm going to show you how to ink on chipboard to make your own embellishment.  

Supplies needed:

Refer to my 4 part lesson for priming, inking, using, and cleaning your stamps.  You will need to follow those steps when making this embellishment.

Step 1
Place your chip board on your paper with the foam insert placed under the paper.  I placed a blue piece of cardstock under the chipboard just to give contrast so you could see the chipboard on the paper.

Step 2
After you've primed your stamp, ink it with your choice of color

Step 3 
Stamp your chipboard.  I used a stamp that is going to have a lot coverage so I recommend holding the stamp firmly against the chipboard and count to 10.  The chipboard is porous and will soak up the ink.  Counting to 10 allows the chipboard time to soak in the ink and to have good even coverage.  If you are using a stamp with a less solid coverage, I recommend holding the stamp with medium pressure counting to 5.

With this project I also used the Faux Leathering technique on the Chocolate and Pacifica.  Refer to my post on August 7th, 2012 for this technique.

Below is the card I made making my own embellishment.  It adds just the right touch and gives dimension to the card.

Have fun embellishing!

Tuesday, August 7, 2012


Time for Technique Boutique

Now that you are comfortable using your stamps and you know which ink to use based on the project you are completing, it's time to learn some fun techniques.

The first technique I'm going to show you is how to make your own B&T paper; Background and Texture paper.  

This technique is called Faux Leathering:

Supplies Needed:
  • INK that is the same color as your cardstock or a shade lighter/darker
  • Deskpad or paper large enough to fit under the paper you are going to ink to allow you to go over the edge...and not get on your table.

Take your ink pad and "smear" the ink all over your card stock.  Not all the paper will get covered and that's good.  I prefer to go in a circular motion when covering the paper.  There is no wrong way of doing this.

Continue until the entire piece of paper is covered.

Now your ready to cut it into smaller pieces for your scrapbook page/card or use it as your base page.  Below is a sample of my artwork using this technique.

Have fun creating!  The possibilities are endless;-)

Sunday, August 5, 2012

How To Stamp Artwork-Part 4 of 4

The first 3 parts of my 4 part lesson discussed the pro's and con's for different types of stamps, how to mount and "prime" your stamps, and descriptions of inks available.  The last part of this series will discuss proper technique for stamping your image.

Once we are done with this lesson, we will move on to the "Technique Boutique" to learn fun techniques with stamps and inks to create beautiful artwork.

How do I stamp an image?

Most have played with stamps, even those that don't scrapbook or craft.  I remember making stamps in Kindergarten out of a sponge.  We cut circles and triangles and dipped in paint...what a mess.  I also remember in Jr. High making a stamp in art class.  I can't remember what the name of the material we used, but we carved an image out and again...used paint.  It was fun!

When you receive your CTMH stamp, you will find a foam insert included with each set.  This is not packaging to protect the stamp...well it its, but that's not its main purpose.  You will use this when stamping your image.

Your first step is to place the foam under the paper you're going to stamp your image on.  The foam allows  "give", if you will, when stamping your image. 

 I compare it to a mattress.  Imagine the entire backside of your body covered in paint.  I know, sounds weird, but stay with me.  Now imagine lying down on a flat board (your scrapbook table) to stamp the image of your backside.  There would be areas that wouldn't stamp...the small of your back, your neck, ankles...are you still imagining this?  Now imagine your backside covered in paint and you lie down on your mattress (foam insert).  Your mattress "snuggles" around you to fill in the areas that a flat board wouldn't.  That's how this works.

Next you want to "ink" your stamp.  I typically tap it with medium pressure 3-4 times in the ink.  

Place your stamp straight down on the paper and apply pressure.  Be sure not to rock your stamp (block) so the image appears as intended.  
  • When using an image with "fine" lines, apply little to medium pressure.  If you press too hard, your lines could be too thick on one side or have a smudged look. 
  • When using a stamp with a "thicker and/or bolder" image, you want to apply medium to hard pressure to get the bold even color on the paper.  

And that is how you stamp with our acrylic stamps.

Don't forget to clean your stamp.  You will need My Acrylics 
Spritz Cleaner and My Acrylics Stamp Scrubber.  

Spray the "scrubber" side.

In a circular motion, rub your stamp to clean.  Then repeat on the dry side to dry your stamp.

This is the end of my 4 part lesson.  Now that you know everything there is to know about the "how to's", now it's time to learn some techniques and make some artwork!  Stay tuned;)

Thanks for reading and I hope you found this helpful!


Wednesday, August 1, 2012

How To Stamp Artwork-Part 3 of 4

What type of ink should I use?

I’m going to cheat on this one.  Close To My Heart is such a wonderful company to belong to.  They have already put out a great explanation to all of us consultants, so I’m sharing with you.  

There are many different types of inks available in the paper crafting industry.  Inks are typically classified as a “dye” or a “pigment,” and can also be described as “water-based” or “solvent-based.”

Dye Ink: Dye inks are produced in such a way that they can achieve a broader and more vivid range of colors than pigment inks. Dye inks absorb directly into the paper or fabric that they are applied to, so the ink color blends more easily with the material it is used on.

Pigment Ink: In contrast, pigment inks have larger particles so that they “settle” on the top of paper and fabrics instead of soaking into and blending with the color of the material they are applied to.  Since this property allows those pale colors to appear opaque on colored or bright papers. (Depending on how thickly you apply the pigment ink to your project, it may take a few stampings to get a solid true-color on your project.) Pigment inks take longer to dry. 

Water-based Ink: Water-based inks (also called aqueous inks) are inks that dissolve in water and are excellent to use in watercolor projects. This is especially easy to do when you use the waterbrush (filled with water) and/or a blending pen. 

Solvent-based Ink: Solvent-based inks are inks that dissolve in solvent. Solvent-based inks separate from water just like oil does, so these inks are best used for putting down an image that you do not want to be disturbed by water coloring. As an example, you could use the Black StazOn® ink to stamp an outline stamp, let it dry, then use the Exclusive Inks® markers and waterbrush to fill the stamp image in. The StazOn® ink will not run or bleed while you watercolor it in. 

Alcohol-based Ink: The advantage of alcohol-based markers compared to water-based markers is that the alcohol dries quickly; therefore, you retain the color of the marker regardless of how many times you color over it, making blending the edges of two similar shades possible. Each layer of color is retained allowing you to shade and highlight without changing the tone or color into a different color; red remains red, yellow remains yellow. 

Watermark Ink: Watermark ink is a special formula specifically designed for giving papers a “water saturated” look where they are stamped. Watermarking as a technique does not work well on Close To My Heart paper. Because the ink is sticky before it dries, you can use it to add some embellishment to your project by stamping an image in it, then sprinkling prisma glitter, Fun Flock, or embossing powder over top. (As a note, embossing powder needs to be heat-set afterward in order to achieve the shiny embossed look.) 

I hope this information has helped you know which type of ink to use for your project.

The last part of this 4 part lesson is:  How do I stamp an image?  I know it sounds pretty obvious, and it is, but I will show you some different stamping techniques too!

Sunday, July 29, 2012

How To Stamp Artwork-Part 2 of 4

Now that I own a CTMH stamp, how do I get started?

This tidbit of information will show you how to mount and “prime” your stamps.

First I must tell you that I’m a very “wordy” person.  In my last blog when I said this is not “hard” and doesn’t take a lot of “work”; I meant it!  This looks like a lot, but I’m trying to give step by step instructions, so it appears to be a lot of work, but it really isn’t.  You’ll see!

First, you need an acrylic block.  Size doesn’t matter as long as it’s big enough for the stamp you are using.  Meaning, you don’t have to own 10 different block sizes, just as long as you have a large enough one to accommodate the largest stamp you have.  You can always mount a small stamp on a big block, but you can’t fit a big stamp on a small block.   I recommend 2 different sizes to get started; 2x2 (click here)and a 3x3 (click here).  If you have larger stamps, we also have a variety of other block sizes (click here).  I recommend the small one because although you could put the small one on a bigger block, it is easier for leverage of the block to not have a lot of extra space.  But make no mistake, if a 4x4 or bigger is all you have, it CAN be doneJ

Next you need your stamp set.  Remove your chosen stamp image and mount on the block.  If you look close, on the bottom edge of the block by my left thumb is a line for a guide to ensure you mounted it straight.

I learned some awesome tricks on how to “prime” my stamps.  This is something you can do for all stamp types.  I wish I could remember my fellow CTMH sisters that posted the information to give her/them credit.  SorryL  What is “priming” your stamp?  Well, if you stamp your image, and you wish it would be just a little “bolder” or “solid”, you prime it.  There were many suggestions of how to do this, but the one that works best for ME is:  Mount your stamp to the acrylic block and rub it on your arm.  This will help smooth the image and allow the ink to give a “bolder more solid” look to it.  **Just make sure you prime it BEFORE you ink it.  LOL.  If not, YOU will be pretty colorfulJ

Another good trick is to take a small sanding tool and “buff” the stamp(click here)

You can also use an eraser

Below is a picture of a stamp I had not used yet.  The stamp worked great right out of the package, however, if you look at the letter "U" and around the "squiggle" on the bottom right, you can see where the ink didn't cover.

Below is a picture of the same stamp used after "priming" on my arm.  Full coverage.

You are now ready to stamp.  Happy StampingJ

If you have any questions please feel free to contact me via email at or call me at 614-725-9677.

Stay tuned for my next lesson:  What type of ink should I use?

Saturday, July 28, 2012

How To Stamp Artwork-Part 1 of 4

I’ve met many scrappers that think stamping is “too hard” and “a lot of work”.  I’m here to show you that it’s not either “hard” or “work”.  For those that think it is, have you ever had a non-scrapbooking friend look at your work and say “I’m not crafty like you, I wouldn’t be able to do that”?  Do you tell them, “You’re right, you wouldn’t be able to do this.”?  I think not!  Most of us scrappers want to show anyone that’s willing to listen about our hobby.  We want to show how easy it can be to embellish a picture and make it unique to your style. 

Scrapbooking is an expensive hobby; don’t let anyone tell you different.  However, if you’re already scrapbookers, then you already have spent a small fortune, I’m sure.  Many of us have had to increase our homeowner’s insurance!  It would cost more to replace my scrapbook stash than it would to renovate my kitchen (with top of the line appliances, cupboards, flooring…)  Shhh, don’t tell Bill; I told him maybe the cost of the living room.  Ya know, maybe a new couch, carpet, couple of end tables, and some lamps.  Ok, he doesn’t “buy” it for a minute, especially since I’ve taken over 2 rooms in the house, but that’s my story and I’m sticking to itJ

There are so many different types of stamps, what’s the best type to use?

I’m glad you asked.  There are 3 types of stamps out there that I’ve used; I’m sure there’s more.  Let me tell you a little bit about each stamp and you can decide for yourself.  Of course, I will share my opinion of which stamps are best to use and why.  Please remember, my goal with sharing my opinion is to point out the pro’s and con’s to the different stamps so you don’t spend money on a product and then never use it.  That’s why I have 2 scrapbook rooms. 

  1. Rubber stamps
·         These stamps are typically mounted to a wooden block.  Usually the block has a picture of the image on top so you know what the image is.  I own a TON of rubber stamps; my husband calls it my “lumber”.  LOL 

          Above is a picture of CTMH stamps from years ago…keep reading to #3 and you will see the benefits to our new stamps!

·         Stamps a clear and solid image.
·         Easy to clean

·         Can be difficult to see where you are stamping.  If you are stamping random images on a piece of paper, this is not a big deal.  However, if you are trying to stamp with alphabet letters or stamp a scene, it is very difficult to see if you are lined up with the last image you stamped to have it straight and spaced correctly. 
·         Are the most expensive to buy of all stamp types
·         Very bulky to store; not top choice for those with limited work/storage space

  1. Rubber-self mounting stamps
·         These are rubber stamps and are not mounted on anything.  You mount them yourself on a clear acrylic block when you want to use it and then remove it to put back in the container. 

I don’t have a picture to show you because I don’t own any.  These came out after I started using Close To My Heart clear acrylic stamps, and those are the only stamps I use now.  I have a friend that owns some and of course I had to try them out. 

·         Stamps a clear and solid image
·         A little easier to tell where you are stamping because you have a clear block to help see through to your paper. 
·         Easy to clean
·         Takes up less storage space than the wood mounted rubber stamps

·         Because the stamp is not clear, it can still be difficult to completely tell where the edge of the image is; again for spacing and lining up with previous stamped images.
·         Less expensive than wood mounted rubber stamps, but still more expensive than my personal choice of stamp sets explained below.

I saved the best for lastJ

  1. Close To My Heart clear acrylic stamps
·         These stamps are acrylic, not rubber and they are clear…see through.  These are not mounted and require a clear acrylic block to stamp the image. 

·         Stamps a clear and solid image
·         Able to see exactly where you need/want to stamp because you can see exactly where you are going to stamp your image 
·         Easy to clean
·         Least expensive of all stamp typesJJJ
·         Takes up very little space for storage.  Perfect for those with small work/storage space.  Even better if you have lots of work/storage space because you can own a bunch of em’ like me. 
·         Can’t think of any…I love these stamps!  I’m being very honest when I say I can’t think of any con’s; I would restate the pro’s, but I’d be repeating myself and I’ve overloaded you with enough information.

I hope this helps you in your decision to try stamping and how to know which one will work best for you.  If you would like additional information on CTMH acrylic stamps, visit my website ,email me at, or call me at 614-725-9677.  Happy stampingJ

Next tidbit of info will be:  Now that I own a CTMH stamp, how do I get started?

Saturday, April 14, 2012

April Stamp of the Month

I just love April's SOTM!  If would like to create some great projects, spend $50 and you can purchase this stamp set for only $5.00.  You can also purchase this stamp set at full retail price of just $17.95.  Click Here.

Mojo Monday 235

WOW!  April is almost 1/2 over.  I can't believe how lucky we've been this past winter with mild weather.  Spring has been wonderful so far.  I've been playing with some Mojo Monday sketches this weekend and wanted to share the birthday card I made for my mother. 

I've used Close To My Heart's Florentine Workshop On The Go Click Here.   

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Don't have time to spend getting all you scrapbook materials out?  Need a quick scrapbook for a gift?  This deal is for you!  Purchase a Studio J 5-pack and get one 5-pack free.  This offer is available in February only!! This is a fantastic deal for any scraper.  Never tried digital scrapbooking?  See our video tutorial below and you can see just how easy it is to create beautiful digital layouts.  To purchase this fantastic deal click here .

Watch this Studio J video to see how easy it can be.  

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Here is the next Mojo Challenge.  I love the simplicity of this layout.  The best thing about joining challenges like this?  I use my scraps up.  I'm more of a scrapbooker but I love making cards too.  Following the Mojo Monday challenge allows me to work on making some cards ahead so I have a stash when I need one, AND I use up my scraps too! 

Challenge for you:  Grab your calendar and look for the next 3 occasions that you would love to give a card for.  Pull out your box of scraps and make 3 cards using this pattern for 3 different occasions.  Just by using different paper/color theme and embellishments, your cards will look different.  Try it!

Monday, February 13, 2012

S1202 Thoughtful Tidings, February 2012 Stamp Of The Month

Above is our February Stamp of the Month.  This set is very versatile.  Great for making a special card or great gift ideas.   Do you see the small writing next to the stamps giving measurements?  Great News!  This stamp set works with our Art Philosophy Cricut Cartridge.  Below are some wonderful projects made with the AP cartridge and this Stamp of the Month. 

 If you are interested in ordering from our new Spring/Summer 2012 Catalog, spend $50, and this set can be yours for only $5.  Make sure before checking out, you choose this special.  This stamp set will only be available through February 29th, 2012. To purchase the Stamp of the Month only click here .