Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Back to the "Bleach"!

Here are the cards we made at my Back to the "Bleach" Technique Class last week:

If you've never tried using bleach with your stamps, it's really not as scary as it sounds. You can create a stamp pad by pouring some bleach onto several layers of paper towels (on a plate or tray). After stamping, just clean your stamps as usual.

You can also use bleach like watercolors--with a paint brush or the tip of an Aquapainter. Just be careful with the bleach. It is very caustic, so if you put it in the reservoir of the Aquapainter, be sure to empty it as soon as you're finished using it. If you leave bleach in the reservoir, it will eat away at the sponge inside the Aquapainter (this is a tip from experience).

Here are some close ups of the cards:

The stars were stamped with bleach and the head of the eagle was colored in with bleach (heat embossing the image first).

We used the See You Around wheel rolled over the bleach "ink" pad to create the background.

The shells were stamped with bleach, let dry and then stamped over using Bordering Blue classic ink. The key to this technique is to let the bleach dry completely. If it's not dry, the bleach will effect the ink color--which is a whole new look.

As you can see from these cards, bleach reacts differently to different card stock colors. Bleach on the Pacific Point card stock left a greenish hue--similar to Kiwi Kiss. On Kraft, bleach created a So Saffron color. Give it a try and have fun seeing what colors emerge!
Don't forget, TODAY IS THE LAST DAY to order the products on the Last Chance List. All of these card were made using retiring stamps. If you'd like to place an order, go to my website and SHOP NOW!
Happy Stampin!

Monday, June 22, 2009

Brag Book... this one's for a Grandma.

The daughter of a friend of mine (from one of my stitch groups) just recently had a baby. When she was asked if she had pictures to share, my friend gave all sorts of excuses as to why she didn't have any... even though her new grandson was several days old and she was actually at the birth! Knowing that I was going to be seeing her again at a luncheon a few days later, I quickly whipped up a clear envelope Grandma's Brag Book:
Boy, was she surprised! Coincidentally, she had actually just gotten pictures back from the printer before coming to lunch and there were just the right number of pictures for the pages I included in the book! So, instead of people fingering all of her precious grandson's pictures, she was able to pass around this book. I have to say, it was a proud moment for both of us. :)

Here's a closer look at the tag. Notice the new punch I used, it's called Modern Label. It's new in the 2009-2010 Idea Book & Catalog and will be available for you to order on July 1! I also used the Billboard Decorative Strip Die (& the Big Shot) for the title on the book. It's not a new die, but I don't think I've shared a sample of a project I've used with that.

Happy Stampin!

Friday, June 19, 2009

Seaside Beach Page

Seaside Beach Page 6-09
Originally uploaded by bbstampin
Here's the 12x12 page I used to demonstrate how to incorporate the 6x6 workshop page into a larger layout. I used another retiring stamp set: Big Deal Alphabet. The letters are punched out using the tag punch and tied together with Natural Hemp Twine. I also used Inspired by Nature (seagrass) stamped in Very Vanilla craft ink. All of these items will be sticking around in the new catalog.

While Supplies Last means While Supplies Last...

I have been a smidge busy this week. With a workshop scheduled on Tuesday, I thought I was all set with a 6x6 scrapbook page and card all designed and ready to go. Well, as I mentioned when the Last Chance lists came out, the retiring accessories are only available while supplies last. Unfortunately, as the workshop got closer, most of the accessories I had planned to use were sold out! Here's my original page:
The Baja Breeze striped ribbon and Baja Breeze card stock are both sold out. When I last checked, the Baja Breeze ink pad and Walk in the Park DSP were still available.

I had even come up with a 12x12 page to show at the workshop--so people could see how to incorporate the 6x6 page into a standard sized album
Also retiring, but still available is the Big Deal Alphabet set. The Great Friend stamp set from the Occasions Mini will be coming back in the 2009-2010 Idea Book & Catalog!

SO, on the morning of the workshop, I went about designing a new page for the make-n-take:
This time, I used regular colors & accessories that aren't going anywhere and planned the page around a retiring stamp set (Seaside), which will be available to order right up until the end (June 30). In the end, I think it turned out to be a better page for the group. One person at the workshop said she was going to use her page as a gift for her dad for Father's Day. They had just gone to the beach and she had the perfect picture to add to the layout!

I did create a 12x12 page to show with this page, but I'm having technical difficulties with uploading it with the correct orientation. So I will have to upload it separately through my backup, the photo sharing site Flickr.com.
Happy Stampin!

Friday, June 12, 2009

Hello and Good-Bye...

As you may know, Stampin' Up!'s new catalog is coming out on July 1. As a demo, I have the opportunity to pre-order some fun new stuff before the catalog goes live! My box of pre-ordered goodies arrived last Wednesday, but I had a lot going on personally last week. So, I am just now getting around to sharing one of my new catalog creations with you.
I used 2 new stamps sets (Circle Circus and Teeny Tiny Wishes) and 3 of the new In-Colors (Bermuda Bay, Crushed Curry & Soft Suede). The Modern Label Punch and Soft Suede Polka Dot 1/2" Grosgrain Ribbon are also new.
You may be thinking, "Hey, this card layout looks familiar!"... Well, I actually came up with this card before I came up with the card for the class that I showed you in my last post. I just liked it so much, that I changed it up with different stamps and accessories.

I prefer to keep my blog-o-creativity upbeat and happy. But that's hard to do when someone important in my life has passed on. I feel I should share the news... my cat, Daisy (16 yrs) went to kitty heaven last Saturday. It was fitting that on the morning of her passing, she enjoyed one last time in a box (one of her favorite things)... I guess it's a good thing I paid to expedite my pre-order... this is priceless:

You may think she looks fine in this photo, but what you don't see is the fact that she could hardly breath and she was wasting away. She weighed a whopping 5 lbs 8 oz at the end. She was a sweet kitty and will be missed terribly.

But don't worry, I'm not lonely... I have another cat to keep me company:
I have to tell you that Punkin did not start doing this until after Saturday. Curious, huh?!
Happy Stampin!

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Seeing Spots No More...

At my stamp-a-stack card class this morning, we'll be making several cards using retiring stuff. Here's one of them:

Say good-bye to the following: Seeing Spots, Zoofari, Baja Breeze Double Striped Ribbon, Black Hemp Twine, Baja Breeze & Kiwi Kiss (card stock & ink).
To create the spotted Kiwi Kiss layer, I ran the card stock through the Big Shot with the small dot patterned Texturz Plate, then I lightly sanded it using a sanding block held flat with the paper.
Happy Stampin!

Friday, June 5, 2009

Farewell to the Rooster...

Gone will be the mornings of the Rustic Rooster crowing from my craft room... waking all the other stamps, mingling with the sheep from Pun Fun and the horse from Wanted. The Level 2 Hostess set will be retiring to greener pastures along with the other stamp sets of the Last Chance List.

Okay, I'll admit, I love this set and it won't really be leaving my stamp collection... the rooster will just take the long journey across to the other side of my craft room and will hang with the other sets of yesteryear. If you'd like a chance of earning your very own Rustic Rooster, give me a call and schedule your June workshop today!
Happy Stampin!

Thursday, June 4, 2009

Saying good-bye is hard to do...

One of the stamp sets I'm most sad to see retire from the catalog is Seaside. I just LOVE collecting seashells on the beach! Here's an ATC (artistic trading card which measures 2 1/2" x 3 1/2") I made using the set for a swap I participated in several months ago:

It may be hard to see, but I used the crackled glass technique. First I stamped the shells in black ink and sponged around them using several different colors of classic ink. I let it dry. Then I used a Versamark ink pad directly on the card stock and sprinkled on Glassy Glaze Enamel Embossing Powder (EP) and heat set... caution! Hot Finger Warning! Oh and, yes, it's normal for the EP to fly all over since the pieces are bigger than the regular type EP. I repeated this step several times to get it good and thick. Lastly, I put it in the freezer to really stiffen it up. After about 10 minutes or so, I gently bent it in different directions to create the cracked glass look.
Happy Stampin!

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Hoard No More! ...well, at least for this Pop-Up Graduation card.

How many of you buy things on impulse and then are either afraid to use them because they cost "a lot" and it has to be a pretty special project or once the items arrive, you just can't figure out what to do with them? Well, I have a stack of stuff like this... mostly accessories. Coincidentally, before I found out this item was going to be retiring, I decided to break into my long hoarded pack of Hooray Designer Hardware. As a bonus, I also used some grommets (also hoarded) from the Occasions Mini on the same card! Check it out:

I saw the idea of using the Top Note die to create a gift card holder on the inside of a card on Shelli Gardner's blog. She mentioned that Stampin' Up! gave their employees cards that actually had a place for 2 gift cards inside (dinner & a movie). Neat idea, huh?! I only needed a slot for one gift card for the graduate I plan to give this card to, so I had to attach it differently that it was on my inspirational card. Here's what I came up with:

It's pretty simple... I folded a 5" piece of card stock in half (the length doesn't matter, but should be at least 4", depending on how deep you want to make the slot that holds the gift card) then set the folded edge 1/2" - 1" in on the short side of the Top Note die and ran it through the Big Shot. At this point, you can decide how much of the gift card you want showing and then score the same distance in on both sides. This creates the flaps that hold the card slot in place. I then used Mono Adhesive to attach those flaps to the inside of the card. I also added a little adhesive inside the edges of the folded area (beside the card slot), so the card would fit more snuggly. Clear as mud?
Happy Stampin!

Monday, June 1, 2009

Last Chance Lists Released!

This is always such an exciting... and stressful time for me. New stuff just around the corner, yet having to say good-bye to some stamps & accessories that I've grown very fond of over the year. Click HERE to see the retiring stamp sets. Click HERE to see the retiring Decor Elements (which are 25% off). The stamps and decor elements on the Last Chance lists will be available through the end of June. At the stroke of midnight (well, maybe a few minutes earlier), they will no longer be available for you to order!

On the other hand, the accessories that are retiring will only be available while supplies last. Believe it or not, there are already products that have SOLD OUT! Here is the list... get out your magnified glass (or click on it to get a bigger view):

If you see anything on these lists that you just can't live without, please give me a call or go to the shopping page on my website to place your order NOW!

Happy Stampin!