Wednesday, March 28, 2018


 The Stamp Collector CMS338 set has some really cool old vintage stamp images. I wanted them to make a colorful background for my card, so I arranged a bunch of the stamps over a piece of Distress Mixed Media Heavystock on my Stamp Platform and then I was able to stamp several pieces before I cleaned them all off and put them away.
 I stamped them in Hickory Smoke Archival Ink -- that is key to this technique. Then I dried the ink with a Heat Tool.  Once dry, as usual, I settled in with a good episode of Murder She Wrote or Hart to Hart and started watercoloring. I used the Distress Markers in many different colors but only used one color per stamp. I scribbled some of the Distress Marker on the Glass Media Mat, then picked the color up with my Detail Waterbrush and applied the color to the stamped image. The really cool thing that happened was that the Hickory Smoke Archival Ink somehow enhanced the color or the Distress Marker Ink and made it look like I had individually stamped each image in a color and I didn't. I really love that little surprise!!
I cut the background with one of my all time favorite Sizzix Alterations, the steel rule Bigz Postage Stamp Frame. It's seriously one of the BEST dies!  So versatile and I use it a TON. It is retired, so if you find it, grab it! If you don't have this die, don't worry, there is a new one coming out soon with 5 different sizes - Stacked Postage. Hooray!
For the sentiment I stamped the large circle and the word Original from the Mail Art CMS339 stamp set. In the opening I picked the sentiment "For Being You" from the Pennants CMS330 set and stamped it in the that space.  
Then to keep with the whole postage theme, I tied some Eclectic Elements Crafter's Thread around it as if it was a parcel.
This is another card that really isn't difficult to make it is just a little time consuming to color all the stamps different colors, but seriously it is so worth it! 

Tuesday, March 27, 2018

Embrace the Journey

This is a very simple card I made using the Tickets CMS337 stamp set and the Pennants CMS330 stamp set. I added a little cork from the Ideaology Textured Surfaces , a few Ideaology Hex Fasteners, and some Ideaology Filmstrip Ribbon.

I just hand cut the pennant and the two mats. The blue color is Sapphire Distress Ink. The tickets were stamped with Vintage Photo Archival Ink.

Sunday, March 25, 2018

Collage Paper Altered Books

I have decided that I want to make some altered books for my coffee table for most holidays. This set was for my St. Patrick's Day decor.  I thought the Aviary Collage Paper from Tim Holtz Ideaology would be perfect for the main part of the book and the Plain Collage Paper for the binding. I started off by gathering some supplies.
Old Books
Collage Paper -  Aviary and Plain
Distress Paint - Peeled Paint
Distress Collage Medium Matte
Distress Collage Brush
Salvaged Design Tape
Stamps of your choosing (I used an older Stampers Anonymous set called Sketch Elements CMS054 and the Worn Text CMS156 alphabet set)
Distress Embossing Ink
Ranger Superfine Gold Embossing Powder
Ground Espresso Distress Crayon
Gold Metallic Distress Crayon
Tarnished Brass Metallic Distress Spray
Crinkle Ribbon
Various Adornments or Die Cuts
The bindings on my books were red so I painted them green with Peeled Paint Distress Paint.
Then to make the de-embossed wording less prominent, I put some Plain Distress Collage Paper over the bindings with Distress Collage Medium.
I liked the grey color on this set of books, so I left it unpainted and just applied some of the Aviary Collage Paper. I tore it into pieces and then applied it with Distress Collage Medium.
I wanted the edges to look older and have a gold sheen since these are for St. Patrick's Day decor. First I applied some of the Gold Metallic Distress Crayon to the edges of the book pages, then I sprayed some of the Tarnished Brass Distress Stain over them with a brush and worked it in then quickly dried them so they wouldn't warp too much but would look fairly old.
This is probably a good time to explain my St Patrick's Day decor briefly. I decorate to celebrate Patrick's faith and life. So no leprechauns, rainbows or pots of gold in my decor. I use a lot of greens for Ireland, shamrocks, crosses, and touches of gold since our faith is precious to many of us.

Patrick was Scottish and was kidnapped and enslaved by Irish clans as a youngster. He escaped returned home, became a Christian, and later returned to Ireland as a missionary to share his faith with the very people who enslaved him. So to celebrate that, I chose the words FAITH, for his faith, FORGIVE, for the fact that he repented and asked for forgiveness of his sins and then in turn, he forgave those who had enslaved him, and then the word FOLLOW because he chose to follow Christ and to follow the call to go to Ireland.
This cool ornate stamp is on the Sketch Elements CMS054 set and I used it on the top and bottom of the binding on each side of the words which were stamped using the Worn Text CMS156 alphabet set. I stamped them onto the binding with Distress Embossing Ink and then covered them with Gold Superfine Embossing Powder from Ranger, then went over them with some Ground Espresso Distress Crayon when they were cool.
I love the look and think it looks really old!
I added a strip of Design Tape along the edge of the green part of the binding just to add a little interest, then I put some Ground Espresso Distress Crayon all around the edges of the book to age it.
I dyed some crinkle ribbon withthe Tarnished Brass Distress Stain and tied it around all three books.
Here you can see that gold shine on the page edges.
I often use Shamrocks in my decor, the three-leaved clover of Ireland since that is traditionally believed to be what St Patrick is said to have used to explain the trinity, but the four-leaf clover is rare and treasured much like Patrick's faith, so I'm very glad there is one in the Souvenir Adornments pack! I added some of the Alcohol Ink Gold Mixative to color it gold before attaching it with a cross below the bow. To make the cross I cut one of the Mini Ornate Crosses from the Movers and Shapers line out of black chipboard, then put Distress Embossing Ink on it and covered it in Gold Embossing Powder. I did this a couple of times and then aged it with Ground Espresso Distress Crayon.

Friday, March 23, 2018

Just My Type

Oh I had so much fun planning the design for this love note which features Inventor 1 CMS340 stamps and the Ornate Trims CMS326 stamps (one of my faves!) from Tim Holtz and Stampers Anonymous. These Inventor stamps are cool and since I don't have much talent in the world of mixed media art, I really enjoyed the challenge of coming up with ways to use them for greeting cards.
The main typewriter image is stamped on Distress Mixed Media Heavystock in Black Soot Archival Ink. Then I went over the whole thing with Antique Linen Distress Ink, added Brushed Corduroy Distress Ink around the edges, and then spritzed drops of water on it to age it.
For the base, I embossed a bunch of the Ornate Trims stamps in gold on a piece of Distress Mixed Media Heavystock. Then I colored it pink with Spun Sugar Distress Ink. I used this as the base and made a second one and cut the hearts out of it using the Sizzix Alterations Heartfelt Die. This is one of those dies I consider to be a staple die that should be in every crafter's collection. It is a steel rule die and can cut so many things it is a must. For this card I cut the Heavystock and chipboard for each of the hearts.
For the sentiment I stamped several sentiments from Glorious Bouquet CMS325 and then cut out the letters individually to make the play on words with the typewriter.

As a final detail I stamped one of the Trimmings that kind of looks like beads. I gold embossed it, then colored with Distress Marker in Victorian Velvet, trimmed it closely and attached it to the top and bottom of the typewriter piece.

 Although this card has a couple of steps to it, it's really not a difficult one to duplicate.

Thanks for visiting!

Blessed are the Curious

This card features the Theories CMS329 stamp set and all of the new mini stencils from Tim Holtz and Stampers Anonymous.
There really isn’t a technique here, but I stamped the tightrope walker and sentiment, then cut along the tightrope and inserted the stenciled Pennants (punched with the Sizzix Alterations Pennant Punch) under the top part of the card so that it looks like the pennants are hanging off the tight rope. I was hoping it would give it a festive, carnival feel.

Tuesday, March 20, 2018

Hello Spring!

Wishing you a very happy first day of Spring by sharing this card that is in full funky floral bloom.
It’s no secret by now that quite possibly my favorite new release die is the Planks die. I really love it. It can take on so many different looks. For this card I was feeling a little “Joanna Gaines” and wanted to make it look a little like weathered shiplap for the background.
To make the floral wreath, I cut multiples of the florals from the Funky Florals 3 Die Set from Distress Mixed Media Hardstock. Then I sat down, put on a good movie, got out my waterbrush and Distress Markers and I got to work water coloring the Florals and putting the extra pieces on them. I’m not gonna lie, this did take some time, but the more Florals you use, the more variety in the assembly and water coloring. I really enjoyed finishing each floral piece and watching the wreath come to life.
I finished the card off with the Shadow Script #2 word Hello for this Hello Spring Card. Although this was made as a card for display purposes, it could easily be in a Framed Panel or put on an Etcetera Tag as a piece of home decor, and based on the ink colors you choose, it could be a happy, warm wreath for summer or a deeper, browns, reds, and rusts for fall.

I hope this card brought a bit of spring and a bit of inspiration to you today!

Saturday, March 17, 2018


Happy Saint Patrick's Day!  
This is a day I spend cooking all day because over the years I have developed a menu that has become one of my husband's very favorite meals of the year.  I'll share that below, but first, let's talk about this card.

I used several new Sizzix Alterations dies designed by Tim Holtz. They are listed below.
Stacked Labels
Stacked Arches
Shadow Script 1
Funky Florals 2

Now, as promised, my Saint Patrick's Day menu. I don't use recipes exactly, so I have linked to a few on Pinterest that are close. Be sure to check in on my Instagram for pics of our meal!
Guinness Irish Stew
Irish Soda Bread with Kerrygold Butter
Banoffee Pie
Served with a pot of strong black tea

Friday, March 16, 2018

My Beloved and My Friend

I made this large Etcetera Tag as part of this year’s addition to my Valentine’s Day decor based around a favorite Bible verse from Song of Solomon 5:16b which says, "This is my beloved and this is my friend." 
 It was so much fun using a whole bunch of the new Ideaology and a few little odds and ends from my stash.

For the background, I attached canvas to the large Etcetera Tag with Distress Collage Medium and then attached the Floral Collage Paper over the canvas with more Collage Medium. To mute the color, I washed the whole thing with Picket Fence Distress Paint and wiped it off. Once it was dry I attached some Design Tape around the outside edge and then went over the dges of the whole tag with Ground Espresso Distress Crayon. I just really love the aged, distressed texture on the background.

Supplies Used:
Large Etcetera Tag
Floral Collage Paper
Rose Design Tape
Distress Collage Medium
Distress Picket Fence Paint
Tattered Rose Distress Oxide and Distress Stain
Distress Crayons - Vintage Photo, Picket Fence
Vignette Frames
Gumdrop Hearts
Jeweled Charms
Locket Keys
Story Sticks
Adornments Milagros
Alpha Chips Elementary
Alphanumeric Script
Lace and rhinestone scraps from my stash

Thursday, March 15, 2018

A Perfect Fit

Today’s blog post features two new Stampers Anonymous stamps by Tim Holtz. I used the Batik CMS327 background stamp and the Inventor 3 CMS342 dress form to make a card that could be a love note, a Valentine, or just a note to celebrate something that ended up being a perfect fit.
 I wanted to take a minute to talk a little about color with this card. I don’t have a particular design style. I just go with whatever inspires me in that moment, and that includes color. Sometimes if I’m working on multiple projects at once, you might see a similar color theme or common design element that is my favorite in that moment. That is the case with a lot of the Stampers Anonymous samples I made this year. I found myself reaching for many of the same colors over and over. This year’s favorites were Brushed Corduroy, Chipped Sapphire and Aged Mahogany. Peeled Paint is quite possibly one of my all time favorite colors, so of course it always makes its way into many of my cards.
For this card I pressed Chipped Sapphire, Aged Mahoghany, and Peeled Paint Distress Inks onto the Batik Stamp, the gave it two light overall spritzes of water, and stamped it onto Distress Mixed Media Heavystock. Then I measured two more pieces of Heavystock and I used a blending tool to load Chipped Sapphire onto the edges to make matching mats. I sprayed them and dried them before layering them all onto a Peeled Paint Cardstock base card.

All that to say, don’t be afraid to pull out some of those Distress Colors you don’t think you really like and give them a whirl! They might become a new favorite!

Thursday, March 8, 2018


I made this card to celebrate the many brave women in my life, and especially those who have fought and weathered severe hardships with strength and grace. I am thankful for each of them and for what they have taught me through their endurance and resolve. Much love to all my brave sisters on this International Women’s Day.
Supplies used:  
Stacked Labels
Funky Florals 3
Shadow Script 1
Fold-Up Bows
Stitched Ovals 
Star Bright Texture Fade 
Embossing Diffuser Set 1
Worn Lipstick Distress Oxide 
Spun Sugar Distress Oxide
Peeled Paint Distress
Shabby Shutters Distress Ink

Saturday, March 3, 2018

Tropical Is a State of Mind

There’s nothing more vacationy (my word) than a drink with a little umbrella. This tropical drink Blueprint Stamp reminds me of my favorite fruity drink at Trader Sam’s Enchanted Tiki Bar at Disneyland.
I started by inking up the Botanical Background Stamp CMS327 with several green colors and one blue, then spritzed it with water and stamped it on Distress Watercolor Paper. Once it was dry I stamped the large Tropical Drink from the Cocktails Blueprint Stamp CMS336 in the center of it in Black Soot Archival Ink.  I also stamped a sentiment - “is a state of mind” from the Pennants CMS330 set to go with the word tropical.

I stamped a second blueprint onto another piece of watercolor paper and then watercolored the image and fussy cut the image. Then I adhered it over the other image on the background with dimensional adhesive.
I colored a third piece of watercolor paper with the same color as the umbrella for the bottom mat.
The yellow cord is Crafters Thread by the Tim Holtz Eclectic elements.

Beer and Pretzels

I found some inspiration online for this card in the form of pub signs. I really wanted it to feel more like an artistic sign than a card, so to do that I added several layers, including a corrugated base from the Textured Surfaces, a layer of stenciled Distress Heavystock using the large  stencil, and a layer of Distress Woodgrain Cardstock cut with the new Stacked Arches dies from Sizzix Alterations.
The stamps used were the Beer Blueprints CMS334 for the bottle and mug, and the Mini Blueprints10 CMS336 for the title and pretzels. I stamped them all on Distressed Mixed Media Heavystock, and then water colored them and cut them out. 
I popped several of the shapes using dimensional adhesive, including the foam. The different levels adds a lot of interest, but is so simple to do. 

Friday, March 2, 2018

Off the Vine Card

The Blueprint Stamps from Tim Holtz through Stampers Anonymous are some of my favorite stamps from Tim (and MJ3rd)! I love to pair the full size with the mini's and that's what I did on this card. I used the Wine Blueprint CMS333 and Mini Blue Prints 10.

I started by making the background which is made by putting Chipped Sapphire, Pine Needle, and Aged Mahogany on the Batik CMS327 background stamp. Spritz with water and then stamp. Sew it on a slightly larger piece of cork from the Ideaology Textured Surfaces. 

Stamp the full size grapes, bottle and word corkscrew as well as the mini corkscrew. Watercolor them with the same or coordinating Distress colors.
Cut the words and images out and then adhere with dimensional adhesive.

This is another very simple, straight forward design for a card that can be used for any occasion.